Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Yesterday Gina asked me if I was still feeling better with this pregnancy than I had with the others and I was thinking about how I felt at this point when I was pregnant with Alaina (it wasn't that long ago). I looked back through my blog and found:If you recall, I just posted this picture a few posts ago:
The first one was taken at 30 weeks pregnant with Alaina and the second was taken at 28 weeks pregnant with no-name-baby (yeah, we're struggling with a name. As usual). I thought it was interesting to note that I have the same farmer's tan in both pictures and I'm wearing the same shirt (my maternity clothes are in short supply at this stage). I think I look a little bigger in the current pregnancy picture (especially since it's from two weeks earlier in the pregnancy) and I look more in shape with Alaina's pregnancy (swimming during pregnancy is great! So long as you can hoist yourself out of the pool--it stops being great when it requires a crane to get you out). The other thing I noticed is that I'm carrying lower this time. I thought I was carrying super low with Alaina, but maybe not... So what's the superstition about how you carry and gender? Is carrying low supposed to be boy and high is girl, or vice versa?

The name game... I had a girl name and a boy name picked out (Cambrie and Bronson), but in the last few weeks, Brice vetoed Bronson and I vetoed Cambrie. I'm glad we did because now those names are obviously just not the "right" names. But now we're back to square one. And we're running out of time. Why are we so dang picky? But at this point, we can't afford not to be. We love our other kids' names SO much, it would be a shame to go with a name that was merely "OK." Feel free to make suggestions as long as you won't be offended if we don't decide to use them (did I mention we're picky?). We tend to like names that are uncommon but that don't sound weird. And I don't usually like names that end with an "s" sound because I think it slurs into our last name ("Is his name Mac or Max Somers?"). I also don't like names that rhyme with Somers and make it sound sing-song-ish. I love the name Tanner, but Tanner Somers is too rhyme-y for me. I've also realized that I really like boy names that are kind of solid-sounding or strong-sounding and for girls (this surprised me) I like names that are pretty and girly. I would have thought that names you could use for a boy or a girl we be more my style for girl names (names like Riley, Skylar, or Jayden), but after Raelin and Alaina, I guess not. Well, I guess I'd better hit the name books for the bazillionth time. See ya!

Friday, April 23, 2010

You have GOT to check this out!

Here is a link to my sister-in-law's blog. She just posted Christmas pictures (she's got 4 kids and she's the Relief Society president--cut her some slack on the blogging -K-) and there is a CLASSIC of Ryker. He is SO funny!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Crash and Burn

Guess who!

Nope, not Ryker! Not Brice either! (Those would have been my first two guesses)

Alaina had her first big spill. It was SO SAD!It actually looked way worse the day after I took these pictures, if you can believe that!
She was playing on the top of this firetruck and took a dive off the back, landing face first into the rocks below. I thought her forehead took the brunt of it, but then her nose developed this huge scab over the course of the day (at first it was just a little raw looking) and the bruise on her forehead was minimal.
But as you can see, her spill didn't scare her away from the firetruck entirely. But she hasn't attempted to get on the back of it again... Smart girl.

And just for fun, here's a picture of this new trick she does that I love! She's such a funny little thing!(In case you can't tell, this is half of an Easter egg and she holds it in her teeth to make a funny green nose for herself.)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Alaina's signs and belly pictures

I've wanted to put together an album of baby signs with the other kids, but never got around to it. But this time, I'm finally doing it. So here are some of the signs Alaina uses that I was able to get pictures of:
"Please" (says "eeeese")
"Thank you" (says "tee-too")
"Water" (says "moe-moe" ) The ASL sign for water is three fingers up making a "W" tapping next to the mouth, palm forward. Since I took this picture, Alaina has modified her version to three fingers up tapping her cheek with her palm facing backward. It's so interesting to me how the signs change as kids try to copy just right.
"Cracker" (says "cckka-cckka" with something like a French accent--the "c" sound is kind of garbled in the back of her throat)
"Banana" or "Bread" (she just kind of flops her hands back and forth for both of these words, but when I guess the right one, she rocks back and forth and laughs or nods her head "yes")
"Food" (says "foo")
"Shoes" (she uses this sign for both socks and shoes even though the signs I use with her aren't even remotely similar)
"Potty" She usually gets that thumb tucked into her fist more like the ASL sign. She's been doing GREAT about signing to me when she needs to go (pee OR poop!!!). She's even signing BEFORE she goes! But, alas, she won't actually go in the potty. She just wants to tell me about it. But we're getting closer! Yay!
She uses lots of other signs that I don't have pictures of yet, but I'll keep working on it. Raelin used a lot of signs also, but she'd drop them once she could say the word. So the set of signs she was using at any given time was smaller than Alaina's because Alaina uses ALL of her signs ALL the time! She really seems to enjoy trying new signs and seeing me recognize what she wants to talk about!

And here's my huge belly:
I have several friends that are due around the same time as me and they are all TINY! What is the secret, girls? Please share! (Shauna, Briana, Karly...?) I was huge with Alaina too and I was working out regularly, so it must just be how my body carries these days. But it sure does make moving around difficult. I was trying to work on building a bassinet for the baby, but I had to give up! Any of you that know me well know that that's hard for me. It's not uncommon to see me out in my yard wielding a chain saw, so to be foiled by a router-and-hammer project is rather frustrating. Sometimes I think I'd prefer the rib kicking from Raelin's pregnancy. Though I'm sure if I had that, I'd still be complaining about it, wouldn't I. Ah, well, at least it's mostly in the belly and not spreading all over my body (yet). All in all, this has been my best pregnancy and I have fewer complaints and a lot more excitement. It's really mostly just heartburn that's killing me (and I've tried everything!). The belly-in-the-way impediment has only started being a problem in the last two weeks or so and it's just kind of annoying.

And here's a cute hairdo I did for Raelin the other day. She wanted a star in her hair. It turned out really pretty!
When the bangs dried and came down on her forehead, the front looked better than in this picture, but her smiley little face is the point here. She was so happy! I love seeing her happy.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


So, Raelin opened up to me about some friend trouble she's had. She keeps to herself most of the time, but I know that if kids are even just a little unkind to her, she takes it really hard (I did too when I was little). But it turns out that some girl who used to be her friend shoved her face in the snow and pulled her hair! What the...!? Poor little thing. She was so sad when she told me about it (you should have seen that bottom lip poking out!). It was hard to send her to school today. Obviously this happened a while ago, since there hasn't been a decent amount of snow on the ground in a while, but it still breaks my heart to hear about her troubles, no matter how long ago it happened. I don't really feel like homeschool is the right thing for her right now, but I sure wish I could just keep her home and safe from mean kids! Why are kids like that? How can they be so mean? Especially to a sweet, nice little girl like Raelin. I could understand someone shoving Ryker's face in the snow (not that I'd be okay with that, but I'd at least understand that Ryker probably did something to provoke it), but Raelin? She's so nice and kind to people. She doesn't ruffle feathers or be mean to people. Why do people pick on her? Poor thing. The only thing I could even think to tell her was that it's not her fault. That kids who are mean like that are mean because they feel yucky about themselves and not because they think she is yucky. So sad...

Monday, April 12, 2010

Little Sahara, etc.

We went to the sand dunes the other day to play on my dad and bro-in-law's four wheelers. My dad bought this ancient beast of an RV off of KSL (we love KSL) a few weeks ago so that he could go camping/ATVing and my mom would be willing to come along. She doesn't camp without a bed, running water, a non-smelly toilet, or a shower (does that really count as camping?). The rest of us certainly didn't inherit those genes! Anyway, my family camped out there for a few days, but the kids and I just went for the day on Friday. The kids had a great time and were sad to leave.

Poor little Raelin had a run-in with the handlebars, though. Her sad little face was heartbreaking, but (amazingly) she didn't cry! She got a good bruise and a small gash on her cheekbone. And it's most likely due to the fact that she was wearing a helmet! It made her head so heavy that she couldn't hold it up over a big bump and the handlebars just happened to find the gap in the helmet to crack her in the face.
Alaina and I just hung around the campsite with Gina and Russell. Alaina liked walking around and playing with dirt and sand. That kid LOVES dirt! The loves to feel it fall through her fingers, she loves to dig in it, and she loves to eat it. Alaina also had a great time "playing" with Baby Russell. They were SO cute!So, I thought of something recently that seems to be paying off, so I'll share. I realized that I used to use the term "dolly" and "baby" interchangeably when talking to my kids about dolls. But I realized (with the pending 18 month gap between babies) that I should really distinguish between the two. A baby is NOT a dolly. Think about it. How do kids treat dolls? They poke their eyes, bang their heads, drag them around by their arms and legs and necks, drop them, throw them, and generally abuse them. Do you really want them to confuse their dolly treatment with a real, live baby? I think not. So I've been careful to talk about dolls as dolls and NOT babies. I think that it plays a pretty significant role in how gentle Alaina has been with her cousin. Sometimes she tries to pat him a little too rough, but otherwise, she's very gentle, even around his face. I've been impressed!I made the mistake at the sand dunes of bringing my camera out to watch the kids play. Sand and cameras DO NOT mix!!! I think it was a contributing factor to the demise of my last camera--it died shortly after a trip to the beach. I was really careful, but that sand is so fine it gets in everything and it clings to little kids and little kids cling to their mothers. So I ended up with a tiny bit of sand around the lens of my camera. I could hear it grinding as the lens opened and closed. So today I thought, "Well, maybe I should get my little compressed air thingy and try cleaning it out a bit before it gets too worked in there and messes things up." Bad idea. It made it worse. So then, I decided that maybe I could take the case off and blow the sand out better from the inside. Always consult the Internet before you attempt such things! There might be an easier way! There were some things I should have tried first, but in the end, I think I would have ended up taking the thing apart anyway. So I took off the cover and then I tried to take off the plastic housing around the lens. And then the trouble started. I unscrewed the screws, but one corner of it wouldn't come lose. I could see the gears underneath, so I tried blowing just through the gap, but some of the gears jiggled loose and I couldn't get them back in their spot. So I broke my dad's cardinal rule: I forced it. The plastic housing broke. Fortunately it wasn't a functional portion and it didn't affect anything. I was able to clean all the gears and put it back together, but then I tried to turn it on and... Nothing. I got a lens error before the motor even tried to open the lens. So I took it all apart to make sure I'd put it all together right. I recleaned everything and put it back together. Still nothing. I tried again. And again. And again. I searched the Internet and found nothing useful (except to learn that this is common problem with this type of camera and tiny dust particles). I tried a few more times. Still nothing. I gave it a rest for a while and tried to consign myself to the fact that I'd broken my camera. I nearly cried. Then I got on KSL to see if there were any cameras for sale that I could justify buying. There weren't. I was miserable. I found one camera that I thought maybe I could buy if I could talk the seller down $10-$20 and if Brice's shed this week was going to be taking him up towards Salt Lake anyway (travel costs are a major consideration with KSL shopping! A $10 item is not worth a trip to Clearfield, even if it's a steal!). I thought maybe I could try one more time and see if there was another spot I'd missed (tutorials for other models made me think I might have missed a spot, if I could find the corresponding part on my camera). I was in the process of working on it when Brice called me back. I was telling him my sob story and then I found a little tiny spine hidden behind some plastic in the corner that butted into the gears. I cleaned it and put things back together as Brice and I discussed our options. But then, lo and behold, I tried the camera and it worked! Hurray! It makes a different noise as the lens opens than the noise it used to make pre-sand encounter, but I'll take it! Lesson learned: get a disposable camera when going near sand. But perhaps the pictures I got of our little day trip was worth it. Maybe. You decide:

Gina wanted some pictures of Russell's first campout, so we did a little photo shoot.

Russell refused to look at the camera. Absolutely refused!

Another lesson learned: if you wear your hair with a part in the middle, put sunscreen on the part. Ouch!And this picture is not at all related to this post. Oh, well, I guess it kind of it. This was me checking to see that my camera was working after the near-catastrophe today. Look at those chubby cheeks! Where did those come from? And I love those big bright eyes!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


We have the greatest Easter tradition (in case you didn't already know that). First the kids get their egg hunt which takes about 15 or 20 minutes. And then the grown-ups (can you call us grown-ups if we still get excited about hunting for eggs?) get to go a-hunting. My dad hides our eggs really hard (and then we hide each other's harder as we come across them) and it takes us a good hour or two to find them all, even though we each only have 10 eggs. We end up in trees, on roofs, under RV's, climbing poles, etc. It's great! Of course, I only have pictures of the kids' hunt because I was too busy hunting to take pictures of the adult hunt. But there are pictures and if I ever get them, I'll post them. We look ridiculous, I'm sure.

Ryker was in a hurry everywhere he went

Alaina loved the robin eggs and M&M's but she couldn't chew them so the colored chocolate goo was constantly dribbling down her chin. It didn't help anything that she'd shove 4 or 5 of them in her little mouth at a time. It was really gross!
Their loot:
So much fun! The kids helped the grown-ups at the end because we were having trouble (as usual) with our last few. They had a totally different vantage point, being so much lower to the ground, which helped a lot!

This weekend was also General Conference for church where we get to listen to our prophets and apostles speak to us. We spent the weekend at my parents' house since we don't have TV. Aside from the spiritual side of things (which was wonderful, as always) we also had LOTS of yummy food. I'm still full. It was my birthday on Sunday, so we had even more yummy food and cheesecake. What a full weekend! It was great!