Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Very Short Book Post

I am having such trouble deciding which book to review. There are so many books and so little time! Maybe I will turn this blog into a full time book review.

I love any Mo Willems book. My favorite page from all his books is when Trixie goes boneless in Knuffle Bunny. I was so excited to see a new Mo Willems book (although Rachel informs me they are not new- I am just slow!). Even better, this is a whole series of books (I counted 9 on Amazon). These are great books for early readers. Willems' ability to capture expression with such simple text and drawing is enchanting. These books are just laugh out loud funny. Most importantly, they stand the true test of picture books: you can read them over and over and not get tired of them!

Adrenaline or How to Scare Your Children 101

Yesterday I got a call from a friend saying that our elementary school was in lock down because there had been a shooting nearby. The police had not caught the gunman. At this point I finally registered that there had been helicopters flying overhead for quite some time. It always surprises me how quickly my heart rate shoots up when something is happening to one of my kids. We were supposed to go to the school and pick up our children (school was done- I was actually waiting for Rachel to walk in the door). So, I got the other kids in the car and made the quick drive to the school. I was pretty impressed with the organization and precaution that the school took. The kids were all pretty scared. Even though the teachers tried to downplay the situation, it is pretty hard to downplay a lock down. Our school (built pre-Columbine) has exterior doors and windows. When the school goes into lock down, they shut the blinds, turn off the lights and have the kids lay down flat on the ground. Pretty spooky for a little kid.

The shooting was just south of us. The police shut down three schools in the area as a precaution until the gunman was caught. Although it turned out that there was never any real danger to the schools, I was happy to see how well implemented the lock down policy was.

On a happier note, it is a beautiful day! The girls insist it is spring and keep pulling their shoes off to play outside. Paul and JT are skiing up at Sundance- I hope they have something to ski on! I am trying to ignore the path of destruction Thing 1 and Thing 2 leave wherever they go. Perhaps we will go for a walk to see the goats and chickens when Katie gets up from her nap!
Thing 1 and Thing 2 (And yes, Adrie is wearing a slip. Because she is a princess and a slip is a beautiful thing. Try to tell her otherwise. Also try to keep real clothes on that child. It is a full time job (oh yea, it is MY full time job at which I fail miserably).)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Supreme Court Rules Unanimously in Pleasant Grove's Favor

We (City of Pleasant Grove) are famous! OK, maybe not. Today the Supreme Court ruled in favor of PG. Although I question if this case should have ever existed, let alone made it to the Supreme Court, I am happy about the outcome. If you would like to learn more about this case:

Happy reading. I think the Justices may have been having a little fun with this case.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Books, Books, Books

I love to see what everyone is reading. I love suggestions for good books to read. I really should be on Goodreads, but first I am doing this blog! I couldn't decide how I wanted to list books on my blog. One of my sisters makes little comments about most of the books she reads- I love to read her comments. Currently I am ranking the books out of 10 points. I think I may need a new system because realistically I don't read books that I would rank a 3 or 4 (or if I do, why would I even bother putting them on my blog?). I have had several people ask "Which book would you recommend from your list?" So, because I love books, I am going to try to do a weekly book review. It may not happen every week. Like most people, my reading goes in spurts. Here is the

I Am David by Anne Holm
The first thing I love about this book is that is was originally published in 1963. Children's literature has seen a huge growth in the last 20 years. Sometimes it is hard to find good literature among all the trilogies, series, and "children's books" written for adults. When I find an older classic, I really respect that the author chose to write a children's book in a time when it certainly wasn't trendy or lucrative. Most of the time, these classics tend to have more substance than the thousands of children's fluff books that are published now.

This book also has an intriguing story line. I Am David is about a boy that is raised in a concentration camp (in an eastern bloc country). When he is 12, he is given the opportunity to escape and begins to make his way across Europe to Denmark. Because he has only known life in a concentration camp, he has no frame of reference for life in the real world. He experiences things like color, smiling, and religion for the first time. The story line captures the imagination and makes the reader think.

The characterization in this book is incredible. Although there is essentially only one character, David, his physical journey as well as his internal journey make a captivating read. Perhaps the thing I love most about the character is his purity and quest for knowledge.

This book will make you think. It will stay with you- I keep talking about it and thinking about it. It is not a book to read just for entertainment.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

What is on your shopping list?

I keep a shopping list on my kitchen counter. One for Costco, one for Walmart, one for Maceys. This way when my scattered brain remembers that we are out of vanilla or chocolate chips or cat food, I write it down while I am thinking about it. Yesterday I looked at my Costco list and this is what I found added:

My first thought is that he (the source of the list additions is rather obvious) wanted to make some type of explosive device. After questioning, he just wants to grow a crystal garden. I can handle a crystal garden. However, I don't know if I will find all these products at Costco!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Valentines Day and A Big Mistake

I have learned to buy valentines early. This year I bought them as soon as Walmart put up the red and pink display (approximately 2 days after Christmas). As I stood in the aisle contemplating my choices I finally settled on three boxes of Disney Princess (gag, but compared to Bratz or Barbie . . .) and one box of a pretty cool little football game. I knew the game would be a hit! Later, I had a brilliant flash of inspiration- or so I thought. I would let Rachel and Joseph split a box of princess and the box of football. Then, all the girls in their class would be happy with princess and all the boys with football. Rachel thought it was a lovely idea and being the organized child that she is, finished her valentines on Monday. Tonight Joseph sat down to do his. I handed him both boxes and started washing dishes. After a minute he said "Uh Mom, I don't have enough football ones." I filled him in on my brilliant idea of the boy/football, girl/ princess valentine. A look of absolute terror crossed his face: "Mom, I cannot pass out princess valentines." Oppps. There went my great idea. I must admit I felt his pain but I had to leave the room to find Paul and laugh, laugh, laugh.

He solved the problem by refusing to put his name on the valentines. He will take princess ones (what option does he have at 8:00 the night before his class party?!) and football ones, but they will be anonymous. I am not pressing the issue.

So, happy Valentines Day! I hope your day includes sugar cookies with pink frosting and perhaps less parental embarrassment than Joseph!

Monday, February 9, 2009

The First One and Some NEWS

I am a reluctant blogger. Not that I am a reluctant reader. I enjoy following several blogs, mainly family, and have thought for quite some time about starting one myself. My hesitation stems from two silly and immature thoughts. First, the whole blogging/ social networking world takes me back to feelings of insecurity I had in Jr. High and High School. On several blogs that I have seen, the list of friends goes on so long that you actually need to scroll down to get to the end. What if I start a blog and I only have two friends?! See? It feels like High School doesn't it? Secondly, at one point in my life I had much to say about whirled peas, but now my life is consumed by such questions as: "Did you wash your hands?" and "Does that go on the floor?" I am not sure that I have much to say of importance.

When I was young, my parents would always say to me "Friends come and go, but your family is always there." They were right, of course, and in this fact I found my answer to blogging. One of the benefits of coming from a large family is that I realized that I would already have more than two ready made "friends" (answering the High School Friends Insecurity Issue). I also thought about how much I love to read about my far scattered family and realized that they may also like to read about us (answering the Having Something to Say Issue).

So, here I go! I don't have any stunning pictures of myself:-) I had to rely heavily on my very computer savvy husband to get this blog up. I had to edit Katie's picture because she had a big smear of something that looked like chocolate on her chin. All of that aside, I do like to keep in touch with family and friends that feel like family.

Of course, the real reason that you visited this blog on the very first day was to hear our NEWS. Yes we are having a baby! Believe it or not, Joseph will finally have a brother. We are very happy and grateful that everything looks healthy with the little baby.