Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Jessica's Everything Else in the Whole Wide World Museum

I realized I missed blogging a few events from my trip to Utah, so here is everything else you didn't see and probably never wanted to:

And in absolutely any order I want it to be in! Because it's my blog post and I'll cry if I want to!

Ha ha Mom! I still have one arm that hasn't been broken in this backyard!

Life occurrence #9 of Jacob smiling in a photo I took.

Life occurrence #409 of Jacob NOT smiling in photo I took. (I get it, you have a reputation to uphold, but throw me a bone, mister!!) This picture was taken while we were riding TRAX downtown and right before this totally legit crazy lady started talking to me about a printed paper of gobbledygook she referred to as "the Stock Market". I can barely admit to this, but she actually asked me to take her picture.......and I froze up and didn't. I'm so ashamed.

Bowling with the cousins!!! There were 13 of us bowling and when we wrote down all of our names for the genius employee to enter in the computer for us, Jacob wrote down Snape and I wrote down Voldemort. But guess who they left off- Voldemort. I later had to be put in as just plain old Jessica. Sigh. However, completely on accident they entered Sean as Jean, which kinda made up for it. That and Jean slipping and falling on the floor on his first bowl. And I am still disappointed that Luke is holding a pink pretend knife he won with his arcade tickets. There was a green one in there, I don't know what happened.

Let's see, who does Cindy's face remind me of in this picture with her cousin Michelle at Pace's in Bountiful? Hmmmm. Oh wait, me.

The face Nathan is making was imitating the face that Luke kept making the entire trip. It kinda became the joke of the trip with Luke. Nate makes a good Popeye, I think.

UTAH GRASS IS SO SOFT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saying goodbye at Nathan and Linnley's house before we left the next morning. Some more excellent faces being made in this one. And some excellent unfocused camera action by me as well.

Nathan took a huge risk by inviting all of us up to the lab where he helps with research at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. He works with zebra fish! So here he is taking some out and letting the kids have a first hand look. It was pretty cool!

Cindy and Luke demonstrating they know what the word "grimace" means.

Sunday after dinner, Uncle Dan played a small game of kickball with the cousins. They had a blast with him :)

Here is a long view shot of Cindy and Jacob as we walked on the surface of the moon. Actually, this is on the way out to the shoreline of the Great Salt Lake. It's WAY better seeing it from 33,000 feet in the air.

Cindy and cousin Kate. They got along so well and had fun being reunited again since Cindy's trip a few weeks before. Cindy misses you, Kate!

Okay, back on the swing again. It's just a rope in a tree, but I still think it was the highlight of the entire trip for these guys :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

A Luke Quickie

Yesterday we needed something to watch, so we fired up the Netflix and finally Jacob chose an episode of Man vs. Wild. Luke happened to be around and was only kind of watching until we heard him exclaim, "Oh gross, that guy is eating a sheeps GUTS!"

Bear, meet Luke. Luke, meet Bear.

Need to wash that down with a good pun? Well, here ya go:

Sunday, August 28, 2011

He put a ring on it

In honor of this...

There once was a boy named Jimmer
Who went way out on a limmer.
He proposed to his match,
She approved with one catch:
That they name their first daughter Kimmer.

Yahoo misses those little details.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Luke Quickie

Tonight for scriptures we read the story of the rich young man, who Jesus told to sell all his things and give the money to the poor. At the end of the story, I asked Luke, "So should we love our Xbox more or Jesus more?" Luke thought really hard, squirmed for a minute and finally said, "I think both." Ouch.

And now a Cindy quickie, also related to Xbox...

I asked Jacob if all his brothers got online to play Xbox last night. He said everyone but Sean played. Cindy then said, "I bet I know why! He and Tara were sharing one long, giant kiss!" An excellent reason to miss Xbox, in my opinion :)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Introducing the Pink Ranger and her sidekick Durf

Cindy had her 3 week follow-up appointment for her arm. She had this idea in her head that a miracle might occur and her arm would be magically healed and she would not need a second cast. I love her faith :) No, another three weeks need to pass by. I was astounded when the nurse offered her the choice of different colors and "American Flag" was one of them. American Flag but NO rainbow?! That needs to be fixed, STAT! Luckily Cindy did not chose glow-in-the-dark or glow-in-the-dark stripes. Ewww. I convinced her to go with pink and it was the exact right decision.

And I was completely fascinated by the machine that takes a cast off. It looks and sounds like a saw but it breaks the fiberglass purely by vibration. So even if it touches your skin, nothing happens. So cool! The nurse was brilliant though, because she showed Cindy the saw for only about a millisecond and just started cutting. Cindy lost about 4 years off her life by the panic attack she had, but it's like ripping off a band-aid, just do it quick. She really did cry over taking off the cast more than the actual moments after breaking her bone.

And this time I was much smarter and immediately put MY mark on the cast first.

Last time I hesitated and got to sign after Cindy, the next door neighbor girl, and two other names of kids Cindy wrote on there herself because "they moved away and wouldn't be able to sign it." Ha ha, suckers! I got dibs this time. And it is a darn good thing because when she got off the bus today it was covered in names. But all know who is most important :)

And what has Luke been up to? Same old, same old. Sleeping almost upside down on the couch with his eyes open....

(Yes, I really did take this photo in the dark two mornings ago when I found him. Because obviously this is WAY more comfortable than his twin size bed and fluffy pillows...)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Yet another great parenting tip

And now I will pass on yet another piece of my most wisdomous parenting advice. Here is one I rediscovered this week. And actually, I can't even take credit for it. My friend Karin's husband's mother (try to follow along), who had at least 22 kids if I remember right, used a pizza cutter to cut up all the kids pancakes and waffles. (Insert music from Handel's Hallelujah chorus here) I absolutely HATE cutting the kids' pancakes and waffles. It just makes me CRAZY! Especially when they are so chewy and stretchy. The pancakes, not the kids. So the other day I remembered the magical pizza cutter and within seconds I was ready to give up my life as a homemaker and become a professional pancake cutter. Now I want to make the kids waffles every meal of the day just so I can cut them up in under 3 seconds. Plus I am also thinking, what else can I cut up with a pizza cutter!?!?!? Tip of the iceberg, my little friend...

Monday, August 22, 2011

Luke has entered the academy

His Jedi training has begun :)

Luke on his first day of preschool.

Cindy was on day 3 of school already, but she came flying into this picture at the last minute like the true photo spaz I have trained her to be.

Luke had a good first day. He got to class and began to draw just like the teacher asked. When she came around to compliment him he said, "I was trying to draw a Temple but it didn't really work.." Oh Luke. You are the cutest :) I think he is going to have a great year!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

I do! (love Sweeneyville)

It's finally the moment you have all been waiting for. Here are my pictures from Sean's wedding. Seeing as this event was the entire point of our trip, I guess it's about time to share a few of them.... (Facebook helped with a few of these. And by Facebook I mean Brooke :)

They got married at the Salt Lake Temple at 9:40am, so we had to be there by 9 to get settled. The kids stayed with some cousins outside and then waited patiently for Sean and Tara to make their grand exit. In the meantime we got to see about 6 other couples come out those same doors. It was pretty fun to critique the different dresses, examine the comparative level of attractiveness of the bride and groom and have the kids accidentally be in hundreds of pictures they never should have been in :) By the way, true, white wedding dresses are definitely in the minority nowadays. Not many brides were wearing one at the temple. Apparently it's all about the cream.

Luke, Lauren, Cindy, Kate and Michelle patiently waiting... Well, Cindy and Luke not so much...

My pictures aren't spectacular, but Sean put Tara into one amazing dip at the top of the stairs.

Cindy and her cousins pretty much attacked Tara the moment she got to the bottom steps. The were on her like a cheap suit on a Toyota salesman. We had to do a little crowd control to keep Tara in one piece.

But finally, we let the girls have their bridesmaid moment in the sun and help carry Tara's dress around to other side of the temple. The cute girl next to Cindy is actually Jacob's cousin Kate, who is the same age as Cindy and Michelle and who Cindy got to hang out with when she went to Utah with DeAnne 3 weeks ago. Kate is GREAT!

It was mentioned at the wedding luncheon that Tara is extremely knowledgeable about what to do to make sure you always look good in pictures. I'll say! She is very photogenic! And I guess Sean is handsome too :)

The photographer took an identical photo of this one, however, I really wish they would have put Cindy and her cast of awesomeness on the other side behind Sean. Sigh....

All the siblings together again :)

Best In-Laws EVER!!!

Uncle Nate the Great and Luke.

This is the only photo I have from the wedding luncheon at the Joseph Smith Memorial building. Yes, totally out of focus, but you get the idea. Sean did play the guitar and sing for Tara. He is very talented and we all enjoyed listening to him play and sing without screaming.

They had their reception at the Wight House in Bountiful, Utah. Just to reiterate, I don't take the best pictures, but you get the idea.

As was mentioned previously, Cindy did throw up right before the wedding reception and Luke threw up in the car on the way there, so this picture is pretty accurate concerning their moods when we first arrived:

But as Jacob observed, If only we could all look so pretty when feeling totally sick :)

If we're being honest, we all know that with her cousins around, Cindy couldn't be kept out of the action for too long. She was feeling remarkably improved by the end of the night!

Cindy and Michelle, BFFs :)

All of the Sweeney clan, or should I say tribe.

Pretty dresses, handsome boys, dancing, flowers, and CAKE??? Best. Night. Ever.

Luke is a stud. He totally protested about the purple tie, but in the end he manned up and wore it like rock star.

How unfair is it that KaRyn is this gorgeous? Very, very unfair. Where does she gets her good looks from anyway???


The throwing up, the cast, the endless complaining about the tux- for these reasons I gave up on a good family photo. This is more "us" anyway.

Okay, this one isn't too bad :)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

It's Cougariffic!

Since teachers had to be back for school last Monday, Jacob left Utah Sunday night. Which allowed me and the kids to play around for another day. We decided to head down to good ol' Provo! First to BYU, then to Springville to see my former BYU roomie Jen. It is always fun going back to BYU, isn't it? So many fun memories there :)

First I met up with Sarah Foley (one of the awesome YW from my home ward) at the bookstore. It was only then that she told me she about to leave for the airport to come home to Florida for 9 days. D'oh! I was under the impression that I wasn't going to see her again for ages and ages and I would win the awesome young women's leader of the year award for this visit. Nope, she was just too nice to tell me to wait a few days and I would see her back home. Just another reason she is cool. Of course the other reason I went to the bookstore was for some cool new swag. It's tradition to get a new BYU shirt every time I go. Cindy and Luke found other ways to entertain themselves while I shopped....

Luke cried about not getting this "claw thingy" for over an hour.

Cosmo! My what a big squished head you have!

After shopping, I hit the Clyde building to pop in on Krista Tripodi, another former roomie. But alas! She was not to be found for the whole week :(Sorry, I didn't warn you, Kriggity. It was kind of spur of the moment and I was just so sure that you would be there!!) But no worries, this will just force Krista to come to Florida and visit ME for a change :)

Then we did some general exploration of the campus. It really is a goregous place :)

Then it was time to get to the good stuff. I promised the kids we would find Po, the Dragon Warrior. And he really IS in the Talmage Building! But good thing there's no charge for awesomeness, because I wouldn't have paid. Look what he did to my children!

Awh, who am I kidding? I could never really stay mad at the Dragon Warrior :)

After BYU we went to the Springville Wal-mart to get Cindy her very own pink CTR ring. She was pretty happy about it. Then we went to visit my former BYU roomie Jen Harris Barnes. I hadn't seen her in YEARS! I love Jen. She is cool and smart and capable and an awesome mother of FOUR. We had some good times together at BYU, from our first shared windowless common room in U-Hall of the now demolished Deseret Towers dorm, to sharing the basement of her grandma's house in Orem just before we both got married. It always amazes me how you can just be thrown together randomly with someone as your roommate and they end up being lifelong friends. Just another way BYU is absolutely magical. Her hubby Greg was there too, and I have known him since they met at Park Plaza apartments where we lived together sophomore year. Her kids are also totally adorable. The two oldest boys took my kids to the park, let them walk their dog, shared their Thomas toys and even had Cindy asking if she could live there by the time it was time to go. Even more awesome is that I didn't even take one picture! Where was my brain??? I might regret this, but at this point in time, these are the only digital pics I have of me and Jen together.

In our defense, we were actually way ahead of our time with these. Imagine teenagers today still trying to be as wacky and goofy with 35mm film cameras. Nearly impossible! Plus we had to wait over 10 years to post these on Facebook! Obviously the wait was totally worth it, though...