Monday, March 31, 2014

March 2014 on FB

March 1: I have a really bad taste in my mouth right now. It's called Firth.

March 4: Jimmy Fallon is such a fabulous anti-depressant!!!

March 7: Having nightmares simultaneously makes me feel: 1. upset for what occurred in the dream and 2. happy that it didn't happen in real life!

March 8: Josh & I took Kanyon to his first wrestling meet today in Darby, Montana. He did so well! We were both very impressed. Although he didn't win a match, he scored some points and never got pinned and put up a good fight!

March 14: Guess who {finally} got bold enough to add some pink color to her hair (after thinking & talking about it for 6 months!)?!!

March 15: Today, I love: blue skies and warmth of sunshine, taking naps, watching my strong son wrestle in a meet, having a dependable car, seeing my husband in a hoodie, having leftover cooked hamburger to make an easy dinner with, and being with good friends at a movie.

March 16: Sunday siestas never get old!!!

March 18: [in response to a quiz called "What Musical Instrument Are You?", I was told I'm an oboe: "Your brightness and quirkiness lights up any room! The oboe has been said to possess clear and majestic tones"]...I was just teaching my 1st graders today about the's the voice of the duck on "Peter and the Wolf"! Random fact...people used to call me "Ducky" in high school because my voice sounded like that character from "Land Before Time". Oboe=Duck=Ducky=Kala

March 20: I am in awe of my young students' talent today! The 2nd/3rd grade show "Movies 101" was phenomenal! I was so proud of all of them and their acting/singing/performing abilities! I've never done such a huge show (100+ kids), and there's been lots of stress and sleepless nights leading up to today, but the internal rewards that I have now are definitely worth it all! I love my job as an elementary music teacher!

March 21: I am PINK dabadeebada!!! Crazy...crazy for feeling so PINK!!! I'll have a PINK Christmas without you. How come there's lots of songs about blue and not more about pink? I decided to change that today! Along with my hair!!!! (Josh replied "Look up Aerosmith's "pink"!)

March 22: Spring Vacation here we come!!! Family trip to Arches National Park--complete with stops to visit family along the way. Hoping for warmth and sunshine, as well as a long car ride without too many backseat fights! ;)

March 28: Today's Good News: I finally paid off my appendicitis surgery (from 8 months ago), I scheduled my first college final for this weekend, I hiked/walked over 7 miles this week in beautiful southern Utah and I woke up today without any more soreness from doing so!

March 30: I've had 10 days off from school, and yet I'm still wishing there was more vacation time before having to go back tomorrow!

March 31: Today's good news: I won a game of Ticket to Ride against my family tonight (yay!!), Josh and the boys de-thatched and mowed our back yard this evening (it looks & feels more like spring now), and I started to read some of my favorite books to my sons' school classes (I just LOVE SkippyJon Jones books and anything by Roald Dahl!).

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Saturday Morning Sexy Man

I sure love this good-looking, incredibly endearing, very talented, hard-working, absolutely amazing man of mine.
Sometimes there's a complete story behind a single photo that nobody knows except for the person who took the picture. There's definitely a little story behind this picture, and I want to write it down to retain it in my mind's memory bank.
Josh and I have both had some rough times with our jobs this year, and with recent news of the Middle School closing next year and grades 5-8 students being pushed into the overcrowded and rundown elementary school and modular buildings at the high school, we were considering moving to somewhere far away from here. Josh applied at a job in northern Montana at a golf course that was within an hour's drive of Glacier National Park, which sounded appealing to both him and I. We started making plans and dreams for our future that included living in a new place. Around the middle of February, we found out he didn't get that job. It was a definite blow to our hopes for the near future, and it put him in a funk for a week (and rightfully so).
One Saturday morning at the end of February, we slept in (my favorite thing about Saturdays!). Josh got up, took a shower, and he put on some shorts because he didn't have plans to go to work that day. We went out to the living room to watch some TV, and Kanyon walked by and put a hat on Josh (which apparently he thought would complete the half-dressed look on his dad!). We've started DVRing all of Jimmy Fallon's Tonight Show episodes, because we don't stay up late enough anymore to view them, but we are huge fans of Jimmy Fallon! So on this particular Saturday morning, we had a marathon of watching new Jimmy Fallon episodes together on the couch.
Jimmy Fallon is such a natural anti-depressant. He's hysterical and so talented, and we laughed so much that day, which was very therapeutic for both of us. It was really the turning point in breaking out of the funk we'd been in. The sun was shining that morning, and the sunlight was coming straight in through the window and lighting up Josh's body on the couch. With the sun's light and the infectious happiness from watching Jimmy Fallon, it was the perfect setting for taking photos of my favorite person in the world.
I got out my camera, and shot a whole series of pictures of him. I'm in love with all the photos from that Saturday morning because the lighting is perfect on his body and his face is glowing with his natural smile. He doesn't like any of the photos {of course}, but they make me so happy whenever I look at them. I even put my favorite one as my screensaver on my laptop, and every time I open it, my face totally lights up (unfortunately, he said I DEFINITELY couldn't post that photo on my blog).
Although things didn't work out like we hoped they would, we are making the best of still living in Salmon for now. I can honestly say that wherever this man is, I'm happy to be by his side. I'm very blessed that's he's forever mine.    

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Robots and Eagles

The Cub Scouts' Blue & Gold Banquet was at the end of February. The boys had been working for weeks on preparing for it at their den meetings. The theme this year was robots, and they created and practiced a skit, helped color a backdrop for it, and made props for it. In addition, they were supposed to make a robot invention at home to bring as a table centerpiece. They both made robots out of tinker toys--a magnificent invention for creativity, if you ask me! I thought both of their tabletop robots turned out so well!

We ate casseroles for dinner, and then we watched their fun skit about zombie robots and scouts.

Ammon's Eagle Scout Court of Honor was on the last day of February. He had a joint court of honor with his friend, Hunter.
They displayed their Eagle Scout handbooks on the table. Ammon's project was building two bridges for the golf course this past summer. Hunter's project was repainting over 30 water hydrants in the city boundaries last fall. Hunter's mom Ashley had two blankets embroidered for the boys, which was a fun surprise and a nice gift. 
My parents came up for the occasion, and my dad (an avid scouter) had the boys say the Eagle Scout charge, which was such a nice part of the evening's program. So many things happened regarding the court of honor that were out of my control, and completely stressed me out in planning the program. But at this one moment, I felt like everything would be okay.

Our Bishop Justin Williams, who has been Ammon's scoutmaster the past few years, presented him with the award. He said some very nice things about Ammon, and we were so grateful for his presentation.

I pinned Ammon's eagle award on his shirt, then he attached the mom's pin to me, the dad's pin to Josh, and the mentor pin onto Justin.
Josh got his Eagle Scout project done the night before he turned 18, so he was so instrumental in helping Ammon get his project done as soon as he could. My dad also took Ammon to a scout camp with him last summer which enabled Ammon to earn more merit badges and camping nights, for which we were so grateful. We are so proud of Ammon for this awesome accomplishment!

Friday, March 28, 2014

"Be Mine, Valentine"

My students' first musical performance for this school year was the 1st graders production of "Be Mine, Valentine" on Valentine's Day. For the past 3 years, the 1st graders have done a show all about Spring, but this year, I changed up my performance schedule as well as all the traditional shows I've done. I had a new concept for the 1st graders' show, and I thought the 'love' theme would be so cute for those young students. I envisioned a program that all the parents would just adore, and the results were exactly just that! 
I decorated the stage very simply, and I was happy with the results. I created a large banner using a Valentine's candy heart font with the program's theme "Be Mine, Valentine". I cut the lettered hearts out of white paper, and painted the letter and border red, then glued them onto a large piece of pink paper and hung it from the ceiling. I am a symmetrical person, so I made sure the stage decorations were equal on both sides. I hung 2 red tissue balls and 6 heart streamers on opposing sides of the banner. On the side walls, I pinned up two long sheets of red paper, then I had all the 1st graders draw Valentine's pictures, and I attached them to the paper. So for about $8 and some time investment, I had a very presentable stage that went well with the adorable program.
I firmly believe that each child should have a special part in each of the performances. So, the concept for this program was similar to the 1st grade Spring programs I've done in the past: each child spoke in the microphone saying something about Valentine's, then each child got to do something with a prop during one of the songs. A couple months before the show, I asked each student 3 questions: "What is a valentine?", "What do you do on Valentine's Day?", and "What's your favorite part about the Valentines holiday?". Then I selected one of their 3 answers for them to tell the audience, and I formed the program based upon those answers.   

There were 48 children in this performance, and the show was split up into 8 sections. In each section, several kids spoke their parts, and then there was a correlating song that those particular students who just spoke got to do something special during that song. The 8 songs were:

1. "Love is a Magic Word" -- the kids spoke about how Valentine's Day is for people to love others. They got to hold magic and heart props during the song.

2. "Skinnamarink"-- the kids talked about how special Valentines Day is. There was one girl and several boys in this section, and the boys each gave the girl a flower in a unique way during the song.

3.  "You are my Sunshine" -- the kids talked about people in their families who were "their" Valentines. They got to wear sunglasses and do action movements during this song, and one held up a large sun in the background.

4. "There's a Little Wheel a-Turning in my Heart" -- the kids talked about what a valentine may look like. They got to blow pinwheels with little hearts on them during this song.

5. "I Made a Valentine" -- the kids talked about valentine's they've made and decorated before, and during the song, they delivered special valentines to members in the audience.

6. "Mail Myself to You" -- the kids talked about ways to send Valentines, then they walked across the stage wearing giant envelopes during this song.

7. "When You Send a Valentine" --the kids talked about giving candy and gifts with their Valentines, then during this song, they acted out what was being said in the song about dropping off valentines, ringing the doorbell, and running.

8. "Viva Valentine" -- the kids talked about their favorite things to do on Valentine's Day. Then they each got to hold up one letter of the word 'Valentine' as it was being sung about during the song.

Kanyon's special part he got to say in the microphone was in the 7th section: "What kind of Valentine's do you like to give?". His answer was: "give candy to your friends".

During the song, he got to deliver a heart to a door, ring the doorbell, and run. His {special} friend Olivia S. was on the other side of the door, and she opened the door after he ran off and picked up his Valentine during the 1st verse. 

When the song was done, he joined his classmates back on the stage to observe the other kids saying their parts, and to help sing the songs. His decoration he drew for the program is the red heart on the wall directly above his head.

The program only lasted about 25 minutes, but it was so delightful. The students performed their program twice: once for their student peers on the 13th, and once for their parents/grandparents on the 14th. The final performance was absolutely perfect, and there were so many "ooohs" and "ahhhs" from the audience during tender moments in the show. I loved hearing the parents swoon over their cute kids! I was so happy with how it all turned out! And seeing my own child perform in my production is always so beneficial for me. I'm so happy I get to be their music teacher. This is a picture of Kanyon and his {special} friend Olivia S. that he got to deliver the heart to during the performance. He loved his part, and he was very happy to be able to deliver the heart to the girl that he likes so much!

I was so proud of the students; watching them perform is one of my favorite parts about being an elementary music teacher. One of the 1st grade teachers told me it was her favorite 1st grade musical performance yet! Success!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

My Valentines

I think Valentine's is such a fun holiday! We had lots of celebrations for it this year, too: including elementary school class parties, a 1st grade musical program, a church activity date night, and a band dinner & dance fundraiser, and luckily I was able to make it to all of them!

Kanyon's 1st grade class all had brown bags that they decorated themselves to hold the Valentines they received from their friends:
After they passed out all their Valentines at their class party, they ate treats and played games until it was time for their musical program (more about that later):

In Jonah and Micah's 4th grade class, they were responsible for making their own Valentine box at home. They were instructed to invent their own box by making something creative out of reusable materials. I stopped in at their class party and it was interesting and fun to see all the different ideas that all the kids came up with.
Micah made an army tank out of 2 cardboard boxes, a paper towel roll, a plastic frosting container, and frosting lids. He used duct tape and paint to complete the look. Also, the top portion of the tank swivels, which was a cool feature of it, too. The hole in the top is where people stuff their valentines in, but the main box has an affixed lid so that when he was ready to get the valentines out, he just had to open up the lid and he could see them all.

 Jonah made a football. We cut the corners off of a cardboard box, and taped the edges together to create the shape. Then he covered it in duct tape and we cut a hole in the top for people to put the valentines in. He painted white around that slit and other parts to look like a football. His box also has an affixed lid, so when he was ready to get the valentines out, he just had to pull on a tab to open the lid and see them all.

Kanyon passed out regular valentines with Pixie Stix taped inside them. Micah passed out Fun Dip packets. Jonah was going to pass out glow-in-the-dark bracelets. We made cards that said "You LIGHT up my life, Valentine", and taped the bracelets to the cards. But then two of the bracelets broke open and the glow liquid spilled all over (and one exploded in Jonah's eye), so then we started over and different made cards that said "I PIX you for my friend" and taped pixie stix to them instead. One of his classmates had a similar idea and taped a card that said "We were MENTO be friends" to packages of Mentos!

Ammon is a part of the high school band, and one of their fundraisers this year (for their upcoming spring trip to Seattle) was a dinner & dance fundraiser on Feb. 15. The event was set up in the high school gym, and the band played several jazz songs for the audience to dance to. There was some swing dance instruction, some soloist numbers, and a yummy dinner of baked potatoes, too. It was a fun event, and Josh and I had a great date night!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Snow Much Fun!

We received so much snow at the beginning of February: over 10 inches in a 2-week time period!

It was so delightful for the boys to play in; they'd never experienced that much snow before! They went sledding down our hill a lot, they got pulled behind the 4-wheeler down the road, they made snow forts, and had snowball fights. They played in the snow after school and on the weekends, and they had friends over to join them in their fun, too.





Sunday, March 16, 2014

Lucky Seven

Kanyon is one lucky boy to have lived to see his 7th birthday. The day before we began celebrating his special day, he was found running along the snowy highway after school in below freezing temps... CLICK HERE to read more about it. It really freaked me out for days afterward, but it made me even more appreciate how blessed we were to celebrate his birthday with him.
This year it was his turn for a family party. He chose for us to go bowling together. On Friday night, Feb. 7th, we went to eat at Burger King for dinner (he really wanted chicken nuggets), and we went bowling in Salmon afterwards.  

It's not often I beat Josh at a game, but I did! I even beat Ammon, but barely! was so happy to win this game! I got 1st, Ammon got 2nd, and Kanyon got 3rd. And Kanyon got a strike during one round using the ball-roller, which was super exciting, too! The order on the screen is oldest to youngest (Dad, Mom, Ammon, Jonah, Micah, Kanyon):
On Sunday, Feb. 9th, we had a family party for him at our home. He requested chicken, so I made two kinds: baked (fried) and rotisserie (BBQ). and we also had mashed potatoes with country gravy and biscuits to go with it. It was a delicious meal that Grandma & Grandpa T. and Uncle Tim & Barb joined us for, too.

After dinner, he opened his pile of gifts from us and both sets of grandparents.

His favorite gift was the highly-requested iPod. He's been using Josh's phone so much, that it was practically a necessity for him to get his own hand-held device like his brothers! And since then, Josh has really liked having his own claim on his phone again!
In addition to the iPod, Kanyon got some great gifts, including clothes and legos and cash and the fun R/C monster truck from Tim & Barb.

For dessert, he requested chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream. Josh and I returned from our trip to Boise (to the Imagine Dragons concert) that afternoon, and made it home just in time to make his dinner. Since I knew I wouldn't have time to make his cake, I just picked up one for him at WalMart.

On Monday, the 10th (his actual birthdate), he took sugar cookies (his favorite kind) to share with his class at school:

As a 7 year old, Kanyon loves:
--the food burritos, tacos, and chicken nuggets
--the color gold
--his friends Keagan & Abby, and his {girl}friend Olivia S.
--to play his iPod (right now his favorite games are MineCraft and Clash of Clans)
--to sing songs (especially ones with a lot of repetition)
--to play board games (he always wants to pick the game for FHE each week)
--to jump on the trampoline (he always prays for his trampolines, too!)

He is doing good at school. He's an excellent reader, and very smart in math. He likes P.E., and likes playing the sports basketball, soccer, golfing, and wrestling. He enjoys singing and humming and making us guess what song he's singing/humming. He likes riding his 4-wheeler, and riding his 2-wheeler bike. He likes trying to make Olivia S. giggle and is very fond of her. He has finally outgrown his habit of watching Tom & Jerry every night at bedtime, and is no longer using melatonin to help him fall asleep either. He still struggles with constipation, and occasionally still gets easily frustrated and hits others, but he rarely bangs his head anymore. He's growing up to into a smart, bright, fun young boy! Happy Birthday Kanyon, we love you!