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2 Girls, 2 Boys and a whole lot of noise.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Guam radio

If you ever need a trip back to the 90's you should come to Guam. I have heard Ace of Base, Kacee and JoJo, and other songs as if I was back in high school. Bone Thugs in Harmony came to the Island last weekend and they had people parking along the main road in Guam for miles down the street. Maybe that is what the local radio stations can afford. I don't know. On the other hand, they have this hilarious radio DJ named Malafunction. This is a skit...or poigniant reflection of the Guam attitude...and it is funny. Had to share. (This should be the GuamGov one.)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Mom of the year today

We have had 4 days without school. My kids did not sleep in on any of those days.
It is Monday here. Guess who is still in bed at 7:25 (school starts at 7:40)? Both my kids. My logic for letting them sleep so long - Katy had a bad night because her stomach has been hurting. (She doesn't act sick but it sounds like it intermittently is causing her pain.) So I am thinking, we will just have pop tarts for breakfast and have a mad dash to get to school.
Cody gets up and gets ready and eats his pop tart. (mom of the year 1)Katy, well, let me digress here for a minute. As a mom, you think "I can get them ready in 10 minutes. Dressed, shoes, pop tart, hot lunch today, out the door. Totally do-able." What us moms forget is that these angelic children have wills of their own.
I forgot to anticipate the attitude and refusal I would get from Katy on pretty much everything I asked her to do. I even tried to dress her myself. You know, they can sure produce impressive maneuvers when they really don't want you to do something. So Katy says her stomach is still hurting, she isn't moving and says she wants to stay home from school. My rule is that if you stay home from school you get no TV privileges and have to lay in your bed all day. Surprisingly she agreed to that. Then I became suspicious.
I took Cody to school late and forgot the juice drinks that I was supposed to take for snack. (Mom of the year 2)
I took Katy to the school nurse who had a line of sick kids at 7:45 in the morning - must have been an awesome Thanksgiving weekend for everyone else too. She looked at Katy and said that her stomach is distended. (I am not even sure that is the right word, nor do I know what that means.) She pushed on her lower abdomen and said to keep an eye on it. It is either constipation or could be appendix related. She has no fever and she didn't seem like she was in much pain so I just said I would keep her home and give her some laxatives.
So that was our morning. Cody had a birthday party to go to after school. We headed to that and both kids played there. Cody wanted to go on the zip line thing they had, so I lift him up and Katy decides to push him. Once it hits the end it ricochets backwards. Because Katy is pushing him, Cody hits that end too quickly and he drops off of it onto an uneven ground with a bar in the middle. I admit that I wanted to be mad at Katy and I may have even swore...quietly. (mom of the year 3) That is going to leave a mark. I think the wind got knocked out of him, too. After that, the kids got balloons to take with them and we left the party.

The kids are hungry so we go to lunch at a sub sandwich place. Cody starts to act tired and lays on my lap. He ends up hitting his face pretty hard on the table when I tried to make him stand up as we were leaving. (mom of the year 4)
I need a new taillight so I stop at the Napa Auto Parts store here and get one. As we are getting back in the car both kids take their time getting into their doors and the balloons fly out. Tears were shed, people. They also tried to blame me for not grabbing them. (Have you ever tried to grab a balloon that has just been set free?) (moty5)
After I got my calm mommy sense back I suggested that we go to the slushy place. Grandma Rachel (our former neighbor) sent us some money to go get a treat and the kids love this place. Here are our happy faces at the slushy place.
I also want to take a minute and point out something. Guam has an issue with it's budget. They don't have one, not that that is uncommon these days. There is a lot of corruption and little oversight and as we were standing outside a government vehicle pulled up in the background. There were three people in it. On the side of the car is written "Government of Guam For Official Use Only". I am certain that only official business was transacted at the Slushy shop today.

We shipped off our Christmas cards and then came home. I pulled out our not-so-awesome leftovers from last night/Thanksgiving (It is a mashed potato casserole with the leftover potatoes, ham, peas and corn. We had the potatoes and ham on Thanksgiving originally and the casserole last night as well.) With this in mind, I knew I would have to change my approach. Picnic in the living room! They thought that was awesome...until they took a bite of the casserole again. I think 3rd time was not a charm tonight. I had to spoon feed them and they drank a lot of water but the casserole was not wasted! (It is gone now.)(also, moty6) I feel kind of bad because if Jeremy were here he wouldn't have stood for that and we probably would have ordered pizza. However, I am over my "dining out" budget this month, so maybe cereal.
The whole point of this journal entry is to remind myself that some days I get to be a supermom. Today was not one of those days.

On the other hand, I did get almost all of the Christmas packages done. Here is what is going to the post office tomorrow: I had a lot of fun shopping for my family and I hope you all like your presents.

Whew! Now I can work on Jeremy's presents. And then someday I might be able to read my books again or have some fun, maybe.

As a side note, my 23 year old brother is very sick and they aren't sure what is wrong with him. He is over 6 feet tall and has dropped to 137 pounds, his heart is racing at over 123 bpm, and who sleeps all the time. He was doing body building not too long ago and was quite healthy so this is quite a dramatic change. He will hopefully get the results from an MRI tomorrow. Potential tumor on the Pituitary gland is the current diagnosis. I did get to speak to him on Sunday, though, so tonight all our prayers and thoughts are going to him. Love you, Nate.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

October and November activities

This week was Parent Teacher Conferences for both my kids. While I was waiting for Katy's conference I noticed her picture on the wall. It was very cute and I had to take a picture of  it to show her dad...especially because she wrote that he is in the Army. I guess we need a Family Home Evening on the different branches of the military and the rivalries between the branches. :)
 Yesterday was Jeremy's birthday so we made him a cake. The kids had fun decorating it, obviously. The kids only got to talk to him for a minute but they wished him Happy Birthday. Since it was "date night" (a babysitting co-op where we all take turns watching the 17 kids between the 5 of us), the other 3 couples and I ate the cake and sang to Jeremy when he called. I'm not sure he loved that but we thought it was great. The kids got some cake too. Happy Birthday, Jer!

Going back a little to Halloween:

He insisted on a moon face. Everything had to be moons.

Katy LOVES art so she had to color all over it before we carved it. (I can't tell you how many papers I find that have doodles all over them.)

We carved these 2 days before Halloween and sprayed them with Bleach water so that they wouldn't get moldy right away. They lasted through Halloween and the morning after they had mold on them.
Thank you to the Douglas family and to Ms. Brittany for helping us experience this tradition. I never found pumpkins this year.

Katy was Jessie, Cody was Spiderman. They had a great time with all our friends a we Trick or Treated on a warm October evening.

Our decorated house
And of course, I have to add a Guammy thing:
We went to American Grocery, which is off the military base. This gallon of milk is $7.79. It made me grateful that we don't run cars on milk and that I get to shop on the base where milk is 4.20 a gallon. :)

This makes me a little humbled...these are coconuts. I delivered medicine to Lovely when she was sick. I kept telling her to get some water and take the Tylenol now. She finally said that her husband would bring home bottled water after work (they have no running water). I gave her what I had in my water bottle in the car but she said that she could go machette a coconut for "water". I took this picture because this is Lovely's water supply...talk about living off the land.
Aspen and I also visited a lady named Rosie. Rosie lives in a cinderblock home and I will post a picture next time I visit her. She just got back from the Phillipines. Her mother just died and they sold their truck so that they could pay for her ticket to go there. When we arrived at her house she was crying and said that they had had to cremate her mother because they couldn't afford to bury her. She was also upset because she has a handicapped sister that she had to leave behind because she couldn't afford her ticket to come live with her now that their mom is dead. She wasn't sure what to do. I felt impressed the night before our visit to come and visit her and while we got to bear our testimonies to her and tell her that the Lord loves her, we got to hear her testimony as she bore it to us.
She said she knew that these trials were just something that the Lord wanted her to learn from. She had to quit her job because she felt the people were dishonest and something didn't feel right there. She said that she has a job where she can work on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and earn $15 a day. She wants to come to church on Sunday so she will try and see if she can change someone for a different day. There is no Bishops Storehouse here, although it would be heavily utilized if there was, but we offered the services that the church provides here. She told us that she didn't want to be a burden on the church and that she knows that the Lord will help her. Aspen and I were very uplifted with this stong spirit that we get to visit teach.
I am trying to reconcile to the fact that I have so much and they have so little. It is strange because we are all equally happy. I am happy to give them whatever they ask for but I don't think that they would be comfortable with all the things that I have, just as I would not be comfortable living in their conditions. Perhaps it is selfish of me because I am the one who has all the "stuff" but I feel like when the Lord says "Unto whom much is given, much is required," (D&C 82:3) he is talking to Aspen and I. I wonder if we were chosen to have the "stuff" because it can be a great trial to overcome gluttony and selfishness. I also wonder if we were sent here to Guam because He knew that we would try to do the things that He needed us to do. I truly feel like our family has been sent here to "serve a mission".
I also want to thank everyone who reads about our experiences and especially those who take the tme to comment or send me a personal message in any forum. It was hard to come here and at first it felt painful when no one contacted us for a while to see how everything went with this great uprooting for us. It is always hard when you go through something tramatic and you want to feel sorry for yourself. Fortunately those feelings subsided and the Lord provided good people that are missing their families as much as I miss mine so we spend a lot of time together. I am grateful to the Lord for sending us friends, for placing us in loving families that care for us even from great distances, and for helping our family grow in amazing ways.
I will end this sappy post with some Kaitlynn-isms that have come to my mind recently but are from a while ago:
Me: "Kaitlynn, I need you to help clean this up."
Kaitlynn: "I can't. My bum is itchy."
Cody was doing something naughty and I had told him more than twice to stop. (He was 2). I said to Cody: "Cody, stop playing with that. This is your last warning!"
Kaitlynn: "Yeah, Cody, this is your last morning!"