Sunday, March 29, 2015

Food Rant

They just opened a brand new McDonalds near our house, and it's pretty nice!  It has a little bit of an upscale feel compared to other venues we've visited, and I was starting to get a little lax in my 'fast food is a necessary evil' mentality.  Instead of once in a blue moon, between Ty and I we ran through that kid food haven three or four times in a two week period.  On Saturday I took Maddie to get her ears pierced, but then we were late for another thing, so I hurried down an extra exit on the freeway to go home via the McDonald's drive through.  $4 later I had enough food to satisfy two and half kid's need for lunch, plus a guaranteed "on time" stamp for my itinerary.

Right after I patted myself on the back for being such a savvy Mom, Annie pulled a sliver of sharp metal out of her mouth.  Train derailed.  It was long and pointy on both ends, like a giant finger nail clipping made of aluminum.  I spent about 10 seconds imagining what that would have done to her intestinal track before I threw away the rest of her hamburger and realized that eating at home is pretty savvy too.

As busy as life gets, it's so hard to figure out kid food sometimes.  I know, I know, you have to just let them eat what you're eating whether they like it or not.  That philosophy earns me a lot of whining, and I get that in my day naturally, so...  It's much more satisfying to have taco night (again) and clear empty plates instead of dumping a bunch of more elevated food into the garbage.   Then I always end up playing room service at bedtime when everyone wants crackers, and for the love, I just have to have this day over right. now.  But really, I can only eat so many tacos.

Is it so bad that I wanted a brief window of food related peace?  It's not like it's going to kill them to eat junk every now and again (assuming there is no metal in the hamburger).  I am grateful for the reality check, however, when it comes to food.  It reminded me that no one is going to prepare a healthy and additive/metal free meal for my family except me.  It's the annoying truth.

I also realize that we live in a world with a lot of flashy food products that my kids see every day in advertising and on the school lunch table.  I can't just pretend that isn't happening.  We can make a lot  of good choices about food, but we can't eliminate the junk.  I hear all the time about "poor so and so" at lunch.  Her Mom only gives her carrots and a sandwich for lunch, so the kids feel bad and share treats with her.  Yeah, sorry health mom.  The birthday train is also ongoing at school, so good luck avoiding the processed sugar.  

just the best
I guess I will keep working on the food problem.  For St. Patrick's Day we made fruit rainbows.  I felt pretty good about that.  We also made lime sherbet floats, and then made them again and again for like four days.  Whatevs.  They keep needing to eat... and we repeat the process of figuring out what to serve.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Roller Derby

My house has totally turned into a roller derby.  All my kids (plus any others who venture into our basement) are caught up in roller blading fever, and it's the middle of winter...I'm going to laugh when it gets warm and no one EVER skates outside.  I taught two neighbor kids how to roller blade just this week because that's all anyone is allowed to do at this house anymore!

We now have three pairs of roller blades, thanks to Christmas, and the girls wear them around all the time like they're shoes.  Maddie wore hers to dinner the other night, and Alli was wearing them last night while Ty was playing Mario Kart with her.

It can get cumbersome.  Maddie actually thinks she's faster on her skates, but of course skating around the kitchen while you clean up dinner is more hindrance than help.  But my rising blood pressure and stubbed toes aside, I'm glad they've found a new love.

I might need to take a minute to apologize to the parents of the eight kids who just HAVE to have their own roller blades now after wearing ours.  It's just contagious.  We wouldn't be doing it ourselves if not for other kids paving the way.  It's funny to watch how mad kids get when they can't stand up straight while my kids are zipping around, but that's exactly what made my kids want to practice.

In fact, I was a little surprised that Alli took to roller blading after a lot of earlier failed tries at friends' houses.  But it all became clear when she told me that she was wearing someones skates (pretty unsuccessfully) and they said, "Well, you know roller blading isn't for everyone," and that was the moment that decided it all.  No, not surprised at all anymore!  That's my stubborn girl.  I love that about her, bless her heart.  It's such a good, and hilarious quality, that she inherited from me (you're welcome).

We took the girls to Classic Skate a week or so ago, so they could try out their new skills.  After all, skating around an unfinished basement and kitchen sink is great for learning but not quite as accomplished as working up some speed.  Ty rented skates so he could go out with them, but when he was the only adult on the floor acting crazy and skating around, he felt a little sheepish.  At least I thought it was pretty amazing.

It turns out that wearing roller blades around like shoes for a month really pays off at the skating rink.  They did great!  Even Annie was able to go all the way around the rink without any trouble, other than the fact that she just refused to go the right direction.

In case anyone is wondering, that old guy with the striped ref shirt and the boss skating moves is still at the skate rink turning kids around who like to go against the grain and showing the teenagers how cool it is to skate backwards.   The good news is that Annie WILL listen to the random ref, even when it's exactly what I've just been telling her 18 times.  Yep, you still have to skate to the right.

Now I guess I need to learn to roller blade too because it looks so fun.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Slumber Party Mystery

Alli turned 11 this weekend, and I can't believe how grown up she's getting.  We had one of those mystery theater parties where everyone has a part and tries to guess who committed a crime, which was a riot with a bunch of eleven year olds.  I got to play the part of the host/detective on the scene.  It was a slumber party mystery, and Alli's cousin Jaycee played the cheerleader who couldn't stop saying "Go Team!" and ended up stealing everyone's stuff.  Then they played Murder in the Dark, but whenever the lights went out they just screamed and giggled, so we didn't always catch the murderer. Grandma brought a Cold Stone cake because the one I attempted was, let's just say not edible...  I struggle with the cake part of birthdays, but I love Alli!

Ginny crawled all the way up the stairs at Grandma's on Alli's birthday, which was also pretty amazing.  Alli and I spotted her while she made those big moves.  When she got to the top she was so  excited, she started jabbering.  It's fun to see her try to communicate a little bit.  I think she was proud.

Friday, January 16, 2015

So Big

On Saturday night Ginny woke up from her nap, and when I went in to get her out of the crib, she was hanging over the railing trying to get a better look at the floor.  She looked up at me with her big toothless grin, and I got a little bit mad at her!  Why can't she stop growing up?  There will be no more pulling up on things in. this. house.   But a few days later, there she was pulling up on the stairs.

We all just adore the pants off this little girl.  Every time she does something new, like eat food from a spoon, or sit up for a second by herself, everyone cheers for her.  And then Ty and I look at each other like, where is the time going?  It's bittersweet, I guess.  The last time for this and that keeps passing us by.  I'm afraid that I'll blink, and it'll be my last kid going to college instead of just learning to stand up in a crib.  You want to be upright?  Whaaaa?!?  Next thing you'll want to live on your own, and that is not happening, sister!  Poor thing.  I won't ever let her grow up.  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Never Speak of it Again...

I haven't written a word in over a year!  Man that was a rough patch.  I just re-read all of my New Year's goals in the last post, and, funny thing, they're pretty much identical to the one's I just made last week that blew my mind.  Top of my list this year was getting organized, streamlined, and efficient so that I can HAVE MORE FUN...

Last year on New Year's Eve I wrote, "Have more fun" and "Find Joy in the Journey," and that would be an excellent lead in to this year, minus the 12 months that occurred directly after I wrote it.  No, we did not have more fun last year or find a whole lot of joy in the journey, but we did bring a healthy, sweet, and wonderful little girl into the world.  It's funny how those resolutions have a way of running away with themselves.

I'd like to say that I endured the whole ordeal with grace and style, my head held high, but mostly I just slouched uncomfortably around making everyone miserable.  Well, misery does love company.  If it's true that you can climb a mountain just by taking one step at a time, then that's what happened here.  We kept putting one foot in front of the other and hoped it was like a pass/fail situation instead of the graded type of life test, and hallelujah, we made it!  We have the sweetest, cuddliest, most precious little girl who brings with her a lifetime of joy and fun.  But it was really really hard.  I'm never doing that again.
I'd like to go back and have some cathartic recap of all the craziness that happened last year, but honestly, it feels like dead weight.  I gotta let it go because this next year is going to be amazing.  I can already tell that there is some magic waiting to happen.  I made about 80 goals I want to accomplish, and so far, after a whole 5 days, I am tearing it up.  That's a good sign, right?  I know, it's a little early to break into a victory dance, but I can just tell that between Ty and I, we have enough energy to make things happen in 2015.  If we don't accomplish everything, we'll conquer something we never intended.  What I'm trying to say is, I haven't felt this great in years!  That's worth celebrating on it's own because I've felt like 7 days in Lehi for an entire decade.  I haven't taken my asthma medicine for about a month now, and I've never felt better.  I was right all along: the meds were doing more harm than good!  Now someone sign me up for Doterra.  Just kidding.  Don't call me about that, I'm only joking.

I have made a lot of goals, and one of them is to write a weekly post to record the life and times of my kids.  I really hope that one sticks because they love to read the old stories, and it makes me sad that I've lost so much time.  So, cheers!  Here's to blogging in 2015!

Christmas Card 2014

Merry, Merry Christmas

This year has been filled with adventure.  We had a baby!  Ty started a new job, and we moved across the street.  It was like running a marathon, only life style.  And speaking of Marathons, Ty ran a few of those too.   He ran a lot.  In fact, he ran so hard that he now has a broken leg.  It’s kind of an accomplishment if you think about it.  I definitely couldn’t run myself into a stress fracture!
It’s been a crazy year filled with miracles.  We learned that we needed to move just 4 weeks before Virginia was due in May, and I was on bed rest for low fluid.  I wasn’t allowed to pack a single box!  The same week we discovered that the next-door neighbors were moving OUT and would be ready to rent their house on the very same day that we needed to move IN.  We literally rolled our stuff down the hill.  What a miracle!

Help came from everywhere.  It was like Angels came to take care of us.  In two weeks they packed all the boxes and then helped unpack them.  They cleaned the house.  We ate amazing meals that I didn’t cook.  I counted about 25 people who sacrificed in big and small ways to help us out that month.  I didn’t even think I knew 25 people that well, and truth be told, I actually didn’t know a few people before they showed up with a mop.  If you are one of those wonderful old or new friends, thank you again, and imagine me giving you a big hug!

The day we moved my fluid dropped so low that I had to have several tests done up at the hospital, and I ended up having our baby girl 7 days later by C-section.  She was beautiful and healthy—that day another Angel touched our lives.  She is so sweet and special, and really she must be after the category 5 storm her birth caused in our lives.  We gave her an extra special name: Virginia May after both of her amazing grandmothers.

As if all that wasn’t enough change for one year, Ty also took on a new job, so now he has two.  It’s been a great opportunity and a Miracle in itself.   In between working for two companies, Ty took Alli hunting this fall and is teaching Maddie how to ski, which they love.  He, as always, lives life as intensely as possible.

Alli (10), Maddie(7), and Annie(5) are growing too fast.  I wish they would just stop!  Alli is going to be in Middle school in another year, and is such a beautiful, talented young lady.   She is a whiz at school and wants to try out for the school play next month.

Maddie has re-discovered her long lost friend Ginny!  Whenever Maddie looks at her, she laughs.  Every time.  Either Ginny thinks she looks goofy, or they are reunited at long last, haha.   It also tuns out that Maddie is super fab at math.  Her teacher raves about her.  (She must get the math gene from Ty.)

Annie is hilarious.  One night Ty pulled into the garage after we’d eaten dinner.  As he walked in, he asked Annie what was for dinner, and she said, “we had chicken and rice and delicious beans.”  He was disappointed to find out that the delicious beans were black-eyed peas.  Annie and I love them, but no else does, bless their hearts.  New Year’s in non-negotiable though!  Good luck, and all that.

We love all four of our delightful girls.  They make life so amazing, and we feel really blessed this year.  Merry Christmas!  Hope your holiday is bright. 

The Hansens