Monday, December 6, 2010

Private

Okay all, I'm going private! Since you all love to read my blog, don't forget to give me your email addresses so you can continue on reading!!! Thanks!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Thankful


(Our snowman family)

I know this is a little late seeing how Thanksgiving was last week, but I wanted to take a minute and tell you all about the things I am thankful for. I'm not usually a sappy, mushy, emotional person and I always have a hard time expressing my thoughts. So, this is my once a year where I guess it's okay to break out of my shell, sort of. I'm not really going to do a lot of telling, I'm going to show:





These three boys are the LOVE of my LIFE!!! I live each and every day to make sure that they are fed, clothed and happy! I'm going to be honest, I don't LOVE every minute of it. There are many days that I want to pull my hair out and scream and cry and just give up!! But then there are also many days that I just want to scream to the world that I have the BEST children ever!!! So let's face it, if I didn't have these three boys, my life would be so completely empty! I love them so much and I am so thankful that they are a part of my life!

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving cause we sure did! Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Finally Done!!!

Never have I been so sick of canning in my entire life, but I am happy to say that I am done canning for the season!!!!! It seems like the last 4-5 months have been so crazy and I have constantly had canning materials all over my kitchen and pantry!!!! It all started with a few batches of tomatoes. Then I did some more tomatoes, and then some peaches, and then some more tomatoes until I didn't want to see or eat another tomato in my life!!! I decided to freeze some corn and that wasn't too bad because my MIL helped me!!! In September I thought I was finally done so I decided to clean up everything and pack it away.

Then, I went to my parents and picked some apples!!!! HELLO applesauce!!!! I did so much applesauce I didn't want to eat another apple in my life! Oh.....and then I came home from my parents to find a whole new box full of....TOMATOES!!!!! Ahhhhh!!!! I could've beat my husband for bringing me more tomatoes to can! I also forgot to mention that I did some pickles mixed in with all those tomatoes!!! Once again, thinking I was done and that I finally had my kitchen back, I put away all the canning stuff. A little too soon however, this weekend my husband pulled up all the beets and decided we (I) should pickle them!!!

So, if you've ever canned before, by yourself that is, then you know exactly what was going through my head when I saw that bucket of beets!!!!! But, like a good wife that I am, ha ha, I pickled those beets and now I can finally say that I am DONE canning this year!!!! When I told my husband I was so glad to be done he said to me, "What about the parsnips!!" I think I better not tell you all what I said in response to that question!

Now that I am finally done, it is so nice to go down stairs and see all my hard work!!!! At least I know that if we have a disaster in the next year that doesn't destroy my home or basement, I'll be able to survive on spaghetti sauce, peaches, applesauce and beets! Sounds yummy right???

I guess I better rest up until next summer because my husband is planning all sorts of stuff to garden next year!!!! I should start a sign-up sheet for helpers right now! LOL!!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Super Mario World!!!

So Rayden decided last year that he wanted to be Mario for Halloween this year. When I got his costume last year on clearance I just happened to see a Luigi costume for Randy and thought I'd get it. Over the last year I thought it would be fun to have a Super Mario family for halloween!!! I happened to have a lot of pink dresses from High School dances and thought I could be Princess Peach. Then I saw a lot of costumes online for a toadstool for Ryker. I was too cheap to spend a lot of money on his costume so I threw together my own costume for Ryker (Thanks mom for the help!) I wasn't sure Ryker would wear his hat but he LOVED IT!!!! The kids just loved dressing up as Super Mario Bros. and so did everyone else!!!!

Rayden was really into the dracula teeth! Maybe next year he will have to be Dracula!




We had fun making Frankenstein cupcakes! They were filled with green pudding!!!!

The last week we have been in a huge apple mess!!!! Rayden and Ryker were huge helpers and we had a lot of fun canning applesauce, apple pie filling and drying apple rings!!!

The glasses were to keep their eyes safe from the splattering hot applesauce!!!

I also got to spend some time with my family this month! My sis and I celebrated our birthday's with the traditional pumpkin pie!!!! Happy Birthday to me!!!!!!

Another school field trip to the pumpkin patch!!!

This was actually the day of my birthday and I had a great day going on Rayden's field trip, making sugar cookies and decorating them with our cubscouts!!! Then we went to a movie with Randy's family!!! Thanks all for the birthday wishes!!!

Rayden picked the BEST pumpkin in the whole patch!!!!! Happy Halloween all!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tired


I'm TIRED!!!!! So tired that I finally gave in today and just let Ryker wear a pull-up all afternoon! Despite that, I still managed to have multiple accidents to clean up!!!! How is that possible you ask? Well, the potty training thing has been so crazy at our house lately! Let me just vent to you all for a few minutes..... I've known from the start that Ryker will test my patience in every way possible. I've said before that it took incredible amounts of patience to even get pregnant with the little guy. In fact, almost three years ago today I found out I was pregnant with him and I was just so shocked and excited all at the same time! However, let's just say the whole pregnancy was miserable, and after the first night in the hospital after he was born, without any sleep, I knew I was in for it with this guy! Every step of the way has been such a trial!!!!

Nursing him was soooo difficult, he would fall asleep every time I would try to feed him or he would bite me, or just not suck at all! His acid reflux was just horrible and I had to give him the nastiest medicine the whole world multiple times a day! The little guy probably thought I was the meanest person on the face of the earth. Becuase of his reflux, he would only sleep if I held him in a certain position and the minute I put him down in bed he would wake up! It was a good day if he took a nap for longer than 30 minutes! Then, when it came to baby food, the kid wouldn't touch the stuff! I had to puree my own baby food and even then he was so picky!

When it came time to crawl I was so excited because I thought that maybe I could finally get something accomplished during the day without him constantly by my side or in my arms! Not a chance!!!!! He wouldn't crawl anywhere unless I was in his sight!

Then he learned to walk!!!!! Unfortunately he learned so well and decided to branch out so much that he constantly was running outside into the road or down the street and all over! There is no middle ground with him, he is only into EXTREMES!!!! He must be his dad's boy.

So, a few months ago he decided that he no longer wanted to wear his diaper anymore and would just take it off all day long. I finally gave in and said no more diapers, except at night of course because let's face it, I don't want to wash and and make his bed every single day! We were off to a great start. The first couple weeks went so well that I thought we were officially POTTY TRAINED!!!! Of course we had accidents here and there but they were pretty rare. Then, he decided that he no longer wanted to poop on the potty. So we struggled for a week trying to get that down and things were flowing pretty good. Then, we had to go camping. Something happened that weekend that totally destroyed all our hard work!!!! I think he just got the idea in his head that since we were outside all day long that he could just drop his pants anywhere and just go!!!!

It's been a month now since we went camping and I really thought we were making some great progress. The last few days have been so great with hardly any accidents. Hurray!!!! And then today happened. I have been super busy with trying to do all the canning and cleaning and laundry and homework and church callings and playgroup and the list goes on and on and on! We had a little accident while I was working out with some ladies this morning. Nothing too bad, it only took a few minutes to clean up and I thought we would be good for the rest of the day. Let's just say the rest of the day turned into accident after accident after accident. I think I am ready to just give up with the whole thing and just put diapers back on the kid! But actually, I know that isn't an option because he will just take it off and go anywhere he feels like it!!!! So what do I do with this little child of mine?????? I'm in a no win situation here!!!! It's a good thing he is so stinking cute! He truly does make me laugh all day with the silly little things he does! I can't imagine life without him (well actually, I can. It would involve a lot less cleaning up of his messes)!

So here's to the next few weeks! May we have fewer accidents, a lot less laundry to do, and many more trips to the bathroom!!!!! Wish me LUCK!!!!!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Heber Century


What a SEXY husband I have!!!!! Rand started riding with some of our friends about 3 months ago and he immediately got hooked! He loved it so much that I decided to give him my dishwasher fund so he could buy himself a road bike (instead of borrowing from people all the time). He started out just going with some friends about once a week and riding about 30 miles. Then he just kept going further distances a couple times a week and pushing himself to get ready for the 100 mile race in Heber.

So originally he was just going to ride the race with our friends and I was just going to bum it for the day at my friends cabin because, HELLO!, I have never ridden my "mountain" bike for more than 2-3 miles! When I mentioned to my mom that Randy was going to ride the 100 miles, she got excited and talked me into riding the 25 mile race with her and my sister. So, here I am on my lovely "mountain" bike thinking it was going to be a breeze! SO NOT AS EASY AS I THOUGHT IT WAS GOING TO BE!!!! It was so DIFFICULT for me!!! I just felt like I was pushing myself so hard the whole time. My amazing friend GiGi, who has been cycling for awhile, invited us to their cabin to ride the race with them. She was so amazingly nice to poke along the tail end of the pack with me probably bored out of her mind. She is such a great friend and I am forever grateful to her for sticking with me until the end!!!

All in all, it took me about 3 1/2 hours to ride the 25 miles and Rand made it through the 100 miles in about 8 1/2 hours. CRAZY STUFF!!! Next time I ride in a bike race, I will make sure to either have my own road bike, or borrow one from someone because that was just plain torture!!!! But, we had a great time with our friends and loved being in such a beautiful country!!!

Rand, Dave and Dan finishing the 100 miles!!! Way to go guys!!!!!!


Me, my mom, and sis. We were just about to start, hence the smiling! Trust me, I was not smiling at the end! But it is kind of cool to say that I've ridden 25 miles!

Me and GiGi!!!! What a Saint for sticking with me!!!

I love this great guy!!! He is such a hard worker and accomplished so much!!!!!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Happenings


Lots of things have been happening around our neck of the woods lately. We are just busy busy busy all the time. Rayden finally started Kindergarten!!!! He absolutely loves riding the bus everyday. One day he wanted to go to story time at the library but it starts right as school gets out for the morning kindergarten class. So, I told him if he wanted to go to story time then I would have to pick him up from school. He decided that riding the school bus home was way more fun than story time so I guess no more story time (It's not like we've been going a whole lot in the last year anyway so not much difference there). He also has some neighbor kids in his class and he really is liking his new teacher. However, I am having a hard getting into the homework routine. I guess I'm not ready for summer to be over because we are still playing quite a bit! I also decided to go to the PTO meeting the other day and it felt so weird. I do not feel old enough to be going to PTO meetings!!!! It's fun to get involved and it's also good to know what's going on at the school. It's also been really nice to have some one on one time with Ryker every morning.
We also have been doing soccer this year! I decided to volunteer to be Rayden's soccer coach (another thing I don't feel old enough to do)! Rayden loves to go and his team is just so cute. We are nearing the end of the season and it is amazing to see how much the team has improved over the last few weeks! I haven't decided if I am ever going to coach soccer again. I don't really know much about it but I figure the kindergarten and 1st graders don't mind.

Rand and I also celebrated our 7th anniversary last month! We didn't do much to celebrate because we were so busy. We took a little four wheeler ride up the mountain and watched the sunset. I can't believe it has been seven years already. I have been so lucky to have such an amazing husband. We get a long so well together and just really enjoy being together. I must have truly been inspired to say yes to his marriage proposal after we've only been dating about a week because he truly is the perfect person for me!

In August we had a fun trip to Bear Lake with some friends. We truly have been blessed to find some great friends here who love doing the same things we do. Randy has been into cycling now that he has his new road bike. They rode around the lake a couple times and we had a lot of fun playing on the beach! Randy has also been training for a 100 mile ride this weekend up in Heber. I decided I would ride, but only the 25 mile. I hope I can make it, I haven't even done a bike race before so we will see how it goes.

So, here are some pictures of exciting adventures:

Bear Lake!!! Ryker loved playing with the big tractors. It kept him busy the whole time!



It was a little overcast when we were at Bear Lake. But, it didn't keep us from having fun!


So much for my pedicure. Ryker jumped in and played in the water for the longest time! I guess now I know what I can do if I need some quiet time and need to keep him busy!

Rayden's first day of Kindergarten! I can't believe how big he is!!!


Ryker likes to put on Rayden's soccer socks and shoes! What a cutie. It reminds me of how Rayden used to put on Grandpa Bytheway's boots!

We went camping over labor day weekend to Piute Reservoir. It was so hot and windy! We had so much fun though. The kids rode the four wheelers, swam in the water, and we even found a spot up on the mountain to shoot some clay pigeons!

He's starting to climb just like his daddy. Strap some climbing gear on this kid and he'll be ready to go!
Here's our little camp spot off by the rocks. We were a ways away from the rest of the camp trailers. It's probably a good thing because we have some noisy little boys!

Here's all the guys....oh and Raimee. She totally shot better than most of them! Way to go Raim!!!

Here are the ladies with the guns. We all took a few turns shooting the clay pigeons. Notice I don't have a gun. I probably shouldn't be trusted with one, we almost had an accident while I was holding it!

Rayden was an animal on the little bike! He was pretty brave to drive by himself. He only got a few war wounds!


Randy studying!
Gotta love the crack! He's actually got such a little bummer, but without his diaper, his pants just fall down! Yes, I forgot to mention that we are potty training. We had a pretty good first couple of weeks. He had a hard time going #2 but we finally got the hang of it. Then, we had to go off and go camping and it has been a struggle ever since we got back. He just doesn't want to sit on the potty anymore. So back to square one!

We've had a really fun summer but it's nice to relax a little bit and get back to a schedule. Randy is back at school, he only has one year of lecture left!!!! I just can't wait for school to be over!!!! Now it's time to get ready for all the holidays!

Friday, August 13, 2010

More fun!

This summer just hasn't been slowing down for us!!! On the 24th of July we went to Monroe to see the kids and grandma in the pioneer parade! They were pulling a handcart with grandma! We also had to stand in line for more than hour so Rayden could jump on the trampoline with the bungee cords. I wouldn't have let him do it because it is such a waste of money but he had his birthday money and was determined to go!



Last weekend we went on another vacation, this time to Bear Lake!!! Unfortunately I forgot to pack my camera :( However, I found out on the last day that Randy packed it but by then it was already too late! We had a great time though. The kids could just live on the beach if I let them! As I sat on the beach enjoying the sun, I realized how dirty Rayden's swimsuit has gotten over the summer playing in all the water and sand! Then I realized how blessed we have been to be able to go on so many fun vacations this summer even though Randy has been in grad school all summer! I guess his teacher's have wanted to have fun too because they have been a little relaxed. That is another exciting thing....Rand is officially half way finished with the lecture portion of grad school!!!!! HURRAY!!!!!! We made it one year, the first semester was horrible and I thought I would go insane before the two years were up, but I have to say it hasn't been too bad.
Randy has also taken up a new hobby :( I don't like his hobbies because they don't usually involve me. I know I'm selfish. I have to blame myself a little for this hobby interest because I gave him my dishwasher fund so he could buy himself a road bike. Now I'm stuck home doing dishes all day by hand while he is off riding with the guys. I guess I should confess that I have a dishwasher....it just doesn't do so great on the washing part. I figure if I'm going to have to pre-wash all the dishes and wash some the dishes again after they come out, I might as well just wash them once by hand. So, if any of you feel sorry for me....feel free to donate to my new dishwasher fund!!!


After we got back from Bear Lake we jumped right into the county fair activities! Grandma R. likes to get all the grand kids and do little projects with them that they enter in the fair. She also lets them enter all her produce from her garden! I entered my canned peaches and peach salsa this year and they both took first! I'll have to get started on some projects for next year! The kids also participated in the kid rodeo! They love just being out all night with all the cowboys and cowgirls in town!!!


Here is Rayden next to his lego creations. He got a blue ribbon!! (1st place)

Of course Ryker loved the tractors!!!! This boy was born to be a farmer!!!! All he says day after day is truck and tractor!!!!
Oh, here is a video clip of Rayden riding the mutton! The first year we lived here we was a little too scared to ride. He was also a little young. The second year (last year) we were all sick and had to stay home on the couch while all the cousins went. This year I was shocked that he wanted to ride the mutton! I thought for sure he would be too scared. Sure enough, he went ahead and rode the mutton! He was so brave too!!! He didn't even cry after he got bucked off and trampled!! I think next year we'll bring a helmet! Our next adventures for a little while will be soccer! Rayden is playing this year and they asked me to be his coach, heaven knows why?? I mean about the coaching part. I know very little about soccer but I guess that's okay since he is only 6! Wish me luck!


video

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Summer Fun!!! (really long post)

So, we have been very very very busy this summer. I just feel like I have been going non-stop for the last few months. It felt good to actually sit down for a few hours today and relax and catch up on some blogs. Then I realized how long it has been since I blogged and thought I better get to it! Here is what we have been up to:

We started out the summer with a trip to Zion's! I don't remember ever going to Zion's before so this was really fun for me! We headed down with a bunch of my family and took a nice easy trail for the kids. It was pretty hot, we had to stop quite often to count kids and take water breaks, but we all made it safe and sound! Well, except for a bloody toe at the very end for someone not wearing shoes, but other than that it was great!

The kids loved the little pool of water at the end of the hike! It was nice to cool off!

Here's our cute little family! Don't look too long however, we're a little sweaty and gross!

And of course, all the kids!!! Well, most of them anyway!! What were we thinking taking all those kids hiking????
My two little one's are just so cute!!!

We also went and did a little rock climbing!!! That was even hotter than hiking because we waited a little too late in the day. The itty bitty ones had a hard time with the heat and headed out yearly but the older boys had a blast. They climbed up those rocks so fast and were so brave to go all the way to the top!!! I think we'll have some great climbers in this family!

All my boys have summer birthday's, so we have had a lot of birthday celebrations lately. Ryker's birthday came first. He LOVES trucks!!!! So you can see why his birthday cake just had to be a truck! He turned two this year and he is all over that terrible two business!!! It's lucky he's so cute or else I don't know what I would do. His cake was a little sloppy because I had to make it in a hurry but he loved it! We had a good time celebrating with family!!!

Randy celebrated his birthday second but I forgot the camera. We were actually in Lake Powell on his birthday and didn't do much to celebrate except for ride the wave runners!!!!

This was our first trip to Lake Powell this year. We went with the Riddle family to Antelope point marina and took a houseboat up Navajo canyon. It was beautiful weather, except one day, and we had a blast! The houseboat was really nice and we had a fun slide on the back. We also had some friends next door on a houseboat with a slide that was even higher! It was great!

Ryker is seriously contemplating whether or not to get into the water or finish his gogurt!

We made a waterslide down the hill into the lake. The kids loved it! I tried it once and wasn't a huge fan. It hurt!

I love how you can see Rayden's arrow in this picture! We like to experiment on his hair in the summer and he wanted an arrow like on the last airbender! He felt pretty special to have different hair and all the cousins loved it!!!

Randy liked the water slide....ouch!!!!


Ryker loved the boat. Except he always fell asleep. I could never figure out why kids always fall asleep on the boat. It seems so uncomfortable!!!


Randy was a pro at knee boarding. He had a rough time getting up everything else but he dominated on the knee board!!! Go Babe!!!!

This was the whole crew!!! It was so much fun, thanks mom and dad Riddle!!!!!

This is what the cousins do when they get together. The girls like to dress up the boys. Can you believe Rayden is the one in the hat. He can play a pretty good girl!!! I'm going to have to use this picture as blackmail when the boys grow up!!!

Fourth of July was pretty crazy this year! It was hotter than ever and crazy too! We had fun going to the parade, having a bar-b-que with friends and then watching the fireworks! I love the fireworks!!


This is our second trip to Lake Powell!! We camped at Lone Rock with my family and had a blast! Ryker was totally in his element! Food and treat galore, sun, water, sand!!!! What more could a kid want? We were fortunate enough not to have a fire incident this year with Ryker. Although, cousin Zack wasn't as fortunate, sorry bud :(

The kids loved playing in the island. It was so nice to have, thanks Sarah!!!!!
The boys love to sit on the wave runners and pretend like they are going on an awesome ride! This is actually as fast (or should I say slow) as some of them like to go! Ha Ha! Actually most of the boys love going for rides! Well, at least my boys do!

How many kids do you think it will hold???

I guess I was the only one paying attention in this picture. We had a lot of fun at Lake Powell with my family. Minus the sand in everything it was a pretty fun and relaxing trip! It was hotter than Hades but the water was warm and the skiing was great!!!

Rayden turned six years old today!!! We celebrated by having Sponge Bob birthday party last weekend with some friends and family. He loved his cupcake cake!!! I almost backed out of making it at the last minute because of my medical situation but he was almost in tears because he really wanted his cupcake cake. I thought that sitting down and frosting a cake wasn't too stressful so I decided to go ahead and do it. It turned out really cute and it made him feel pretty special. If it weren't for my amazing sisters who pulled together and helped me with the birthday party it would have been a huge disaster. Thanks girls!!!!
Anyway, Rayden is six now and I just can't believe it! He is getting so big! He has already lost two teeth and just informed me that he has a molar coming in in the back of his mouth! He loves loves loves playing Legos with his friends and he recently has fallen in love with star wars! He is such a big helper and loves having his own room!

This is my little Ryker......he may be little but he has a big personality!!! He's a wild one!!! He really keeps me on my toes. I have to constantly watch him or he gets into everything!!!!

A couple things I have left out that has made our summer even crazier is we finally moved into a new house!!!!!! It was kind of last minute but I am so grateful that we were able to find a fairly new house that was in our price range and that would fit our family. There weren't a whole lot of options available in our small town and I've been watching the market in our area over the past few years. When I first saw this house, Rand and I wanted it so bad but it was a little out of our price range so we kind of just forgot about it. Then, our Realtor found out that the seller's were willing to drop their price! We were so excited and knew we had to jump on it! So far it has been a dream come true having my own house again! But, it has also been a lot of work! Having everything in storage for two years was a nightmare!!! I couldn't remember what boxes everything was packed in. Anyway, we are slowly getting settled. It has been hard since we have been so busy but little by little it is falling into place.

Also, just a week after moving into our home we found out we were pregnant with our third. I was a little shocked (well actually a lot shocked) but excited at the same time! Everything seemed to be going well, no sickness and feeling great, except for being really tired and really hungry all the time. I was even able to keep running and run the fourth of July 5k run. I felt great! Well, last week I started having complications. After having an ultrasound and seeing the babies heartbeat I felt a little better but I still felt like things were not going to end well. A few days later I had a miscarriage. It was difficult to go through but I was very blessed to be able to have my family around to help me get through it all. In a way, I was really grateful that I was only 7 weeks along because it was a lot less complicated then if I had been further. It was also a really good learning experience for Rayden. He has learned so much about prayer and Heavenly Father's plan for our family. In a way, I never really felt like it was time for this little spirit to come to our home. I am so grateful that I have learned early on that life isn't always about what I want, but what Heavenly Father wants for me. So, anyway, our little family is doing great and we are really loving the summer and all of the fun activities we have enjoyed! We have been surrounded with family and friends and we are loving life!!!

Hopefully soon I will post pictures of the new house!!!!!