Sunday, June 1, 2008


Wow, what a relief today to turn the calendar and have it relatively empty. May was filled with a lot of fun things, but oh my was it busy. Here's just a quick run down of the months events.
- weekly soccer practices for Abby & Bridget and Saturday games
- piano recital for Abby & Bridget
- dance recital for Abby, Bridget & Ava (btw - we had to attend two separate recitals because they couldn't arrange all the girls classes into one show, so we sat through 3 hours of dance!)
- a 4 day trip to Montana for me for my grandpa's funeral. I spent many days prepping for this to make it as easy as possible for Quinn. I had all the girls clothes laid out for all four days, dinners planned each night and an itinerary for who needed to go where when. The only thing I couldn't help out more on was the hair fixing - Quinn managed really well.
- planning and executing teacher appreciation week for Bridget's class. This included taking over the class for 45 min. one day and collecting money for and buying a class gift.
- girl scout stuff - putting together an awards ceremony for the girls and prepping a habitat for humanity house for the girls to paint (I missed the actual painting part - I was in Montana)
- hosting a neighborhood barbecue and outside movie night. Quinn actually put quite a bit of time and energy into this, but I helped a little too!
- birthday Luau for Ava & Iris. Their actual birthdays got lost in the shuffle of recitals and such, so we celebrated with a big party a few days later. It was a fun party to plan and the weather cooperated so we could have it outside.
- planting time. May means time to plant a garden and get all those summer annuals in. We have a very small garden, but a very large rock wall that requires a lot of weeding.
- two year-end school parties to help with. One required me filling over 50 water balloons - my fingers were a little raw and my shirt a little wet after over an hour of this.
- 4 new babies born this month. Part of my calling is to arrange meals for these new moms and also visit them and their new babies.
- Mother's day - which I mostly missed being in Montana - but I came home to wonderful surprises and gifts from my wonderful family!
- clearing out the basement so we can finish it. Again, this task mostly fell on Quinn's shoulders, but I have spent some time going through boxes and purging and packing and also planning how we want to finish this thing out. We are now the proud owners of a new gas fireplace - too bad it's summer now - we'll have to wait a few months to actually enjoy it!
Now all this is in addition to our regular routine that includes weekly dance lessons for the older three, weekly piano lessons for the older two, volunteering weekly in Bridget's class at school and all the other little day to day household duties. As I said before, all very fun and exciting stuff, just a bit much crowded into one month. That's why I'm looking forward to June so hopefully we can get caught up on some of the things that have fallen by the wayside (Laundry!). Did I mention that I managed to find time to read all 600+ pages of The Host? Good thing I've got my priorities straight.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Name Game

I just read a post from a friend about how they came up with their kids names. I'm still not officially blogging yet, but I couldn't resist writing this post. Just as a note, we are not early namers. We're more of packing up walking out of the hospital saying "what should we write on the birth certificate?" namers. Quinn will not even discuss names before the baby is born - which I think is the main reason for the delay. The stress of the hospital and post delivery issues do not contribute to a good environment for these important life long decisions. Surpisingly, I'm actually quite happy with what we've come up with!
Abby Brenae - I was one of thousands of parents that thought this was a unique, not over used name. I hadn't heard it on TV, I didn't know any other Abbys (besides Dear Abby) and in fact I worried that it was a little too unusual. Fast forward five years later and there are Abbys everywhere. She if often questioned if it is short for Abigail..........NO! I knew I would never call her Abigail so it's just Abby. Brenae is one of Quinn's concoctions. He likes to take a name and tweek it a bit. It's like Renae with a "B". Fun Fact: if she ever marries anyone with a "Y" last name, her initials will spell ABBY!
Bridget Kate - This one I'm not quite sure about. I honestly don't remember where we came up with Bridget (like we sometimes wonder where she came from too!). I think when I was little my mom told me that if my brother had been a girl, his name would've been Bridget. I guess it's just stuck with me since then. It's also Irish which neither of us are, but the name Quinn is. I've always loved the name Kate but felt it didn't quite work alone with our last name, but sounded good as a middle with Bridget.
Ava Simone - Most dramatic (& tramatic) experience of all. First of all, I had heard the name Ava here and there and really liked it, but I was afraid that it was going to be too popular so it sort of fell to the bottom of the list. So, were in the hospital eliminating names based on all sorts of factors. What are we left with? Jetta! Yes, we actually named Ava "Jetta" at first. We came home and I immediately knew that it was all wrong. I could not even bring myself to call her Jetta. That was on a Saturday. We spent the rest of Saturday and most of Sunday going over names again and decided that she needed to be Ava - whether it was too popular or not. I went back to the hospital Monday morning and changed the birth certificate to Ava. Simone was just one of those names that I liked, but was not daring enough to use it for a first name.
Iris Elizabeth - By far the easiest of all. I had seen Iris in a baby name book and jotted it down to consider. I had twenty to thirty of these "considerations" so Iris was just tossed into the mix. The weird thing is how it kept coming up. 1. while shopping in St. George, I heard a mother call her daughter Iris. 2. after returning home from St. George, for two days in a row, Iris was an answer to a crossword puzzle clue. 3. Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes had just named their baby Suri. Quinn really liked that name, but I knew we couldn't use that right after they just did. I told him that my mom used to work with someone named Siri. When I asked my mom how it was spelled she told me and Quinn just stopped and said "guess what siri is spelled backwards?" Ta Da - Iris. It still wasn't totally decided upon before she was born, but I was pretty sure that's what I wanted. Elizabeth is just one of those classic names that sounded pretty with Iris. I guess it's sort of a family name too (whose family doesn't have an Elizabeth somewhere in the line?), but that wasn't really the motivation.

I'm not sure what I would name a boy if I ever had one. I've always love the name Taylor, but I think it's gone too much to the girls side and I'd have to have a definite "boys" name considering he'd have 4 sisters. Truthfully, as hard of a time as we've had coming up with names for our girls, I think boy names would be even harder. We like to joke that we'd name a son Dollar - get it? Ha Ha - Dollar Beal!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

News Flash...

..... I officially stink at blogging. I warned all of you not to visit my blog until I got it to where I wanted it to be. Now you get a glimpse into what I'm all about.

I'm an all or nothing kind of girl. I want things in my life to be a certain way - laundry, kids, house, etc. I'm not obsessive/compulsive by any means, but I am picky about how things are and I like things done my way. The problem occurs when I get lazy or distracted or just don't want to do it. Here's one example.... I don't want to do the laundry - I hate doing laundry (especially the kids stuff - it takes forever to fold and hang), but I don't want anyone else doing it either because they don't do it my way. I once saw on Oprah that you should let the kids help fold laundry and clean up around the house. That is a nice theory, but I have to be the one to fold the towels the way I want them folded and put them away in their color families so they look nice in the linen closet. My kids try to help and I've even spent time showing them the right way to fold, but I end up re-doing it when they leave the room. If I'm not in the mood for doing laundry (which is most days), we just end up with piles of laundry! How does all this relate to blogging?

I want my blog to be just so. Do I want to spend the time to figure out how to do it? No - I have to spend my time thinking about all the laundry that I've let pile up. So instead of just posting here or there, I ignore it or as my husband likes to put it "bury my head in the sand". I'd just rather not do it at all until it is up to my satisfaction. Why then, you may ask, am I even blogging now? A few of you out there have been bugging me about why I haven't posted since the beginning of December. Hopefully, this will satisfy you until I complete my blogging 101 course and officially get things up and running. I promise to let you all know when the "Grand Opening" will be (like it will really be that exciting, but who knows? Maybe I'll even offer door prizes for the first 10 viewers!) Until then, happy blogging to you all!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Love/Hate Relationships

As I journey through my day to days, I often find myself feeling love/hate relationships with lots of things. The one that comes to mind today is my sewing machine. First of all, I HATE it because it is a cheap machine that I bought several years ago and I continually have problems with it. Today for example, as I was changing the sheets on our bed, I decided to make a quick alteration to our pillowcases. It should've taken 10 minutes at the most - but my machine had a different idea. My thread kept breaking mid sew and I had to stop, re thread and start again only to have it happen again a few inches later. I also hate the fact that I don't have a dedicated sewing area in my house. I end up hauling the machine upstairs to work on projects at my kitchen table, which creates a huge mess and invites trouble from the little people living in my house who think it's fun to push the peddle when I'm not looking and sprinkle pins throughout the house (you'll have to ask Quinn about helping me find pins... with his feet!)

Now I LOVE my sewing machine for what it represents. Every fall, I get this little urge to browse through the pattern section at the fabric store and find the perfect Halloween costumes for my girls. Even after all the frustrations of dealing with my inferior machine, agonizing over zippers (don't even get me started on zippers - ugh!), and unpicking and resewing countless mistakes, I find an unexplainable satisfaction from completing the project. I think part of it comes from my love of solving puzzles. It's the excitement of starting with simple materials and putting together these fabric pieces in just the right way until you end up with an actual article of clothing. Now, don't even think of asking me to hem your pants, I'm really not that great of a seamstress, but it is something I enjoy when my machine is working well.

My latest project that is still just in the idea stage is to make matching nightgowns for the girls for Christmas. They all love wearing nightgowns, but it's nearly impossible to find any out there that aren't smeared with Bratz or Sponge Bob all across the front of them. I found this really old fashioned style pattern with lace trim and ruffles at the hem and sleeves - it reminds me of Little House on the Prairie. Realistically, it will be a miracle if I could complete just one, let alone all four, but I'm still hopeful that they'll be done in time to open on Christmas Eve. Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Welcome to my Blog!!

Alright ... so here I am starting another new project to take up more time that I really should be spending on other unfinished projects (i.e. scrapbooks, quilts, various home improvements and the always unfinished folding of the laundry). However, I feel quite justified because this will be like my personal journal (another neglected project) that should be easier to keep up on for some odd reason that my hand written journal. The only difference being that my hand written journal is generally kept private while my blogging journal will be out there for all the world to see. I don't want to promise too much - so my goal at this point is to update or "post" once a week. Maybe when I get better at it, it will be more often. I am also not promising too much excitement - my blog may be boring, but it's about my life and that's not boring to me. I will have to sign off for now, seeing as my typing has been interrupted by a very suspicious odor emanating from a certain 17 month old!