Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

For the beauty of the earth

For the beauty of the skies

For the Love

Which from our birth

Over and around us lies


Lord of All,
to thee we raise


This,

Our hymn of grateful praise

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I have never met a kid...

Or an adult, for that matter,

that doesn't like a good treasure hunt.

Which is why geocaching is the perfect activity for a sunny and care-free day.

Playing detective and tracking down the hidden cache with a GPS....

Deciding which treasure to take home with you once you find it....

Enjoying the day with your friends.....


And hiding the box again, imagining the next adventurers who will find it.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Some evidence of #4 in my last post

I find that if I am feeling a little blah.....

....I usually don't blog much. Mainly because I am worried that I will say something that will seem melodramatic and embarrassing later.

Yes, I haven't been blogging much lately, which means that yes, I have been somewhat blah. The main reason:

The economy.


So cliche, huh?

All my life I've never been too worried with economy talk. It has never really affected me before, so I guess I didn't get it.

But house prices have dropped dramatically in our neighborhood in the past month. Despite that, sales have stalled. Lenders are asking for at least 10% down, which, let's face it, most people just aren't prepared for.

Which means it isn't an ideal time to be selling a house.

People come and see it and LOVE it, and some even want to buy it and just can't get the lending right now.

And knowing how this is affecting us makes me think a lot more about how much worse it is for a lot of other people out there right now, which makes me feel depressed and very fortunate at the same time.

So yeah, that makes me feel blah when I think about it, but here are ten other things that make me feel not-blah-at-all:

1. We have a renter lined up for the house, which means it will now be making us (instead of costing us) money every month.

2. Last night after a FHE lesson from Colin, we did Family Movie Night, and for once it was actually successful (Colin usually gives in to his high-energy fidgets 20 minutes in and finds something else to do). Gabe was adorable and wore his ninja hat and held his Kung Fu Panda sword the whole time. It was just pure FUN.

3. Colin and Chad are off for the week after today.

4. My baby gets cuter every day.

5. I finished ordering my Christmas cards yesterday and I am really happy with them.

6. I get to put my Christmas tree up this weekend.

7. My kids, husband, and I are all healthy.

8. My husband, who works for a bank, has not lost his job and we are well taken care of because of it.

9. I got to have all the Charlotte family over on Sunday and we had such a good time. I am so lucky to live near them!

10. Being worried always makes me pray more, which brings the spirit into my life more, and leads me to make decisions, large and small, that impact my life in very positive ways.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Too fun to be called babysitting

Last Saturday Evan and Santi hung out with us while Bobby worked and Sabina went to the temple. Those four boys have so much fun together that I just have to check in on them every once in awhile to make sure they aren't up to too much mischief. I thought this was a cute picture of them.





Not long ago I was talking to Audra on the phone and Lettie was driving her crazy by "doing the dishes" and making a big mess. Hehe. Sorry Audra. When I watched Lettie, Jovie, and Callie on Thursday, right after we finished lunch, Lettie hopped up and gathered everyone's plates and proceeded to help me by washing them. Since I don't have to deal with the mess that it could create daily, I thought it was sweet :o)




Oliver got so much love that day! Those three girls just mothered him, and he really loved every second of it. He is used to lots of boys who come up and just say "OLIVER! Oleeeeveeeer!" really loudly in his face. These little girls, on the other hand, were quite gentle, and tucked him in with soft blankets and stuffed animals.






Callie being goofy with her sister.











Wednesday, November 19, 2008

EVERYONE! Take a guess

I happened to chat online today with my youngest brother, Bryce, and found out that his mission papers are in! He said he will probably know where he is going by the first week in December.

He gave me permission to get a poll going on here about where he is going to be called. I don't care if you normally don't comment here, you need to now! Everyone take a guess. Jeppson siblings, make sure you get Bryce's nieces and nephews to guess too and post it on here! Comment soon before someone else takes your guess!


If someone guesses correctly (specific mission, here is a link to all of them), I will buy you a $25 gift certificate to your favorite restaurant!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Starry-eyed

For what must have been my tenth birthday, my sister Christie bought me a ticket to the high school play she was performing in - A Midsummer's Night Dream. I sat there, with the lights low, transformed into a world of Shakespeare and romance, and felt a tingling, overwhelming, thrill spread through my body.

The Arts. I was bitten.

My soul lived for that thrill from then on. It would consume me while watching a touring ballroom team or a fellow dancer performing. And I felt it while performing myself. Backstage at a recital or competition, I reveled in the excitement awaiting me onstage. The lights, the hushed voices before the music began, and the experience I was about to have, collectively, with the audience.


Whether I felt it as a performer or an audience member, the thrill always lifted me, carried me to great heights, but then inevitably left me again, feeling somewhat lonely. A lonely girl in a small town, surrounded by people interested in other things, with maybe three chances a year to get those good-goosebumps.

Three chances a year is actually pretty good for a town like Blythe, but still not enough for someone so bitten.

Even though I left that town almost 10 years ago and had many opportunities to immerse myself in The Arts in college, I still remember other little girls like that lonely one, who would come up to me after dance recitals or play performances with starry eyes. I could tell that they felt the thrill, that they hungered for it, and couldn't find it often enough.

Which is why So You Think You Can Dance means so much to me. True Art, every week, straight through your television. Terms like "beautiful lines" and "Contemporary Dance" are now known and used by the mainstream public.

And starry-eyed girls everywhere feel a lot less lonely for it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Happy Birthday to Sabina!

Sabina is a sister-in-law from heaven. She is truly one of my best friends and my children adore her. Seriously, I think Gabe wants her to be his mommy.

Did you know....

that I love So You Think You Can Dance?!

You did?

Oh.

Well, check out Audra's post anyway for some smokin' pictures. (sigh)I was about fifteen pounds lighter when they were taken! Hurray for babies though and all that.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Maybe this is a little un-hip to ask....


but did anyone see Oprah yesterday with Hugh Jackman? He is about the closest I get to having a celebrity crush. I am hoping this movie is going to be good (and not rated R).

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Oh, it's over alright!


We haven't had a lick of candy in this house since early Monday morning, when Chad took it to work and gave it away. How did I manage that, you ask?

We pretty much let the kids go at it with the candy on Halloween and Saturday. On Saturday afternoon, our own tummies bloated with chocolate, and our ears about to explode from the constant whining and begging, Chad and I sat the kids and their rotting teeth down and made them a deal. We would trade them all but ten pieces of their candy for a toy of their choice (provided it was under ten dollars). Oh, you better believe they jumped on that. New toys are usually reserved for birthdays and Christmas.


And so we set off to Target, where Gabe quickly settled on a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle (to go with his ninja costume, which he is still wearing around the house), and Colin hemmed and hawed until he decided to get some sidewalk chalk and a dry erase practice-your-alphabet book. Pure excitement, that kid.

Win win.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The view from my bedroom window

Autumn 2008
Don't look too closely - I was using my camera's panoramic mode and I messed up a little.

Walk right in, sit right down, baby let your hair hang down


I almost didn't bother trying. It was was 6:00pm, and the rumors of long lines across the city were rampant. The news was even showing voter-related traffic. I hadn't voted yet because I hadn't wanted to drag three boys with me (Colin was off this Monday and Tuesday) to possibly stand around for a couple of hours. Now that Chad was home and dinner was over, it was time for bedtime, and I didn't want to be cruel to leave it all to Chad with a wide-awake baby. So I decided to bundle the tyke up and at least drive over to my voting place to see what the lines looked like.

Which is how I found out that an hour and half before the polls closed was the perfect time to vote yesterday. No lines greeted me - Only the enthusiastic volunteers (all delighted by the sweetie in the sling), who helped me walk right up to one of the many empty voting booths.

Once there, this is how I voted:


I pointed to each candidate and said their name. If Oliver cooed, I voted for them. It took a long time, but I think it worked really well. You know how people always say that babies are still so close to heaven. Who better to decide? Certainly not me.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

(sigh) Baby names part III

I am a yupster?
All of my boys' names are on this list.
So is Oscar, btw.

Shoulda gone with Carver.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The whole shebang

Both Colin and Gabe could not have had a better time than they did last night. It was wonderful and magical. The cold snap we have been experiencing went away just in time. I have never seen Gabe run so much, even at the end when he had to carry his bucket with both hands. Our street was as festive as usual. The boys were both tickled with their costumes. Oliver was happy the entire time. It was just perfect.

I have never been able to get a really good picture of my kids in their Halloween costume on Halloween night. They are just way too excited.

Oliver wore the chef's costume that my mom made Colin his first Halloween, when he was 6 months old. Since Oliver is only 2 months, I did a quick tighten on the hat, but it still fell over his eyes every once in awhile. Have you heard? Oliver is a pinhead. Despite being in the 50th percentile for weight and height, his head in the 25th. Weird for someone who has Jeppson genes.
Bobby and Sabina (notice the link- she has a blog now!) came over with the kids after they finished their neighborhood.

Liam and Oliver looked so cute together with their costumes on. That hat seemed to add just enough weight to make it impossible for Oliver to pick his pinhead up.

This is a picture to cherish. Notice Liam grabbing Oliver's scarf. Is this the way it's gonna be Liam? C'mon, you've only got him by three months!

Even more impossible than getting a good picture with three boys in their costumes is getting a good picture with six boys in their costumes, after they have had tons of candy.
What makes this picture especially funny is the one that follows. Look at Oliver leaning on Gabe.......



And then watch Gabe get up quickly to cough! Down goes Ollie!

I have banned Simpsons consumption for all juveniles in the house, but I made an exception for last night. It's a bit of a tradition to watch a Treehouse of Horror before bed. Oliver actually laid there for quite some time. Yep, we start 'em young around here.