Saturday, October 25, 2008

High School Musical, 3rd Grade Style

She has caught the dancing bug. That's right! Alyssa boogied her way through a Saturday morning learning a new dance for a football half time show. She and her good friend Ashley, participated in a dance clinic, put on by the local High school dance team. Alyssa loved every minute of it.

There is nothing Alyssa loves more then flouncing around on a dance floor, wiggling her hips and waving her finger. The song they danced to was appropriately titled "Tell me something I don't know", which seems to be a constant phrase used in our home as of late. Because 8 year old girls do know everything, and they are absolutely never wrong.

This coming Thursday, the kids get to perform their dance at the Century High School football game half time show. We have hit the big time now. What fun to see such joy race across Alyssa's face as she completed the dance and had the praise of 15 high school girls. It was definitely worth the 25 bucks. Each girl had their picture taken with the Century dance team, and received a T-shirt honoring the event. I'm sure the shirt will be worn for many weeks to come.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Humpty Dumpty needs his Horsemen

Today was Peyton's Humpty Dumpty drop for Kindergarten. All of the children in his class, and the other Kinder class, were given the assignment to create a container to house a raw egg. It had to be strong yet light weight and soft enough to provide cushioning for the egg. This was definitely a homework assignment that screamed "Dad, gets to help". Peyton's teacher, Mrs.Herzog, loved how involved the fathers became. Each dad beamed with pride at his creation. I have to admit there was some pretty extraordinary homes for these tender eggs.

We witnessed parachuting loaves of bread, spring enhanced footballs, jello stuffed Tupperware, and foam blown tennis shoes. Peyton's creation came from moms stock pile of preschool materials. He used a plastic bucket that once contained a pile of buttons, and stuffed it with Pillow batting and feathers. The outside was decorated with a picture of Humpty about to take the plunge. So cute!

Our always adventurous and theatrical principle, Mr. Noesen, then dressed up like a king and climbed to the roof of the school with the help of several dads. The children anxiously waited down below, and chanted the Humpty Dumpty Nursery Rhyme. This was the cue for the launch. As you will see in the following pictures, Peyton's egg was not so lucky. But man what a fun day they had!
The egg safely nestled in the can

Peyton awaits the inevitable

King Principle Noesen

Peyton's egg is about to make the plunge

The kids looking upward and onward

Oh! our poor little egg. Sorry Humpty!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Fall Favorites

My good, good friend Rose and I went for a walk this morning to take in the beautiful Fall colors. Autumn is absolutely my favorite season. Everything looks brilliant and majestic. Along the way we passed my favorite tree. We pass this tree everyday on the way to taking the kids to school. I love it because it turns every imaginable color. All of this looking at fall colors had me thinking about all the other things I enjoy about the season.

Thick, soft, and comfy blankets. I love being able to pull out those heavy linens and pile them high on my bed.

Hot Chocolate. This is one of the few ways I actually enjoy chocolate. It feels so smooth as it trickles down your throat. Yum!

Pumpkin pie. The sheer texture of grainy pumpkin, so mush like and slimy should turn you off. But it tastes so darn good you forget all about the texture.

Sweaters! I love me my sweaters. I love to rap myself up in a sea of thick and sometimes itchy browns, greens, and burnt oranges.

Yummy Stew! I could eat a different kind of stew everyday and be perfectly happy. At least I'm getting my vegetables.

Persimmons! They are this fabulous fruit. Many people say it is an acquired taste. They are kind of a mix between a pumpkin and a peach. Very fallish, and I love them.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Little Red Head that Could

I think I can, I think I can, I think I DID. Sewing has always been a terrifying and unpleasant experience for me. I'm pretty sure I gave my mom a few gray hairs back in the day. She tried to teach me how to sew several times, unsuccessfully. I reasoned it away saying, "most of the time it is cheaper to just buy products anyway." However, this past week made it necessary to catch the sewing bug.
Alyssa will be participating in two talent shows in the next couple of weeks. One of the numbers she is involved in requires her to wear a Poodle Skirt. I do not own one. I desperately tried to find someone who would let me borrow theirs. I even went on the hunt at local Good Will Stores and costume shops. I mean it's Halloween right? There has to be something. NO! The one I did find cost $30 and I refuse to pay that for a talent show, I am far too cheap. I finally told myself, you can do this Nancy, a poodle skirt has to be one of the easiest things to sew. I headed over to Joanne's for the 99 cent pattern sale, found the easy version of a poodle skirt pattern, picked up the essential materials(felt, elastic, iron on poodle,thread) $ 6.79 later I headed home and went to work. Much to my surprise I enjoyed myself. I even understood the pattern and instructions. Maybe my moms teachings rubbed off on me after all. Needless to say, Alyssa now has a poodle skirt and a proud mom. I can, do it, I can do it, I DID !

Getting ready to cut!

cutting success

See mom! your old sewing machine is still being used.

Finished product! Isn't it pretty?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Primary Program 08'

Yesterday was the Quatama Ward Primary Sacrament meeting program. This is absolutely without a doubt the best Sunday of the year. There is something magical about seeing 80 children valiantly sitting up on the stand, that makes your heart flutter with pride and love. Primary Children songs have the most tender and influential messages. When they are sung by sweet , innocent voices the message is heard 100 fold.

This year I was told that when the program was being written, the wonderful primary presidency sisters included little snippets of comments that the children had actually said throughout the year. I guess that is why when I saw Peyton's speaking part, it looked like something he would actually say. Well at least the last sentence did.

When Peyton took to the microphone he proudly claimed:

" Families can go to the temple together. I can prepare now to go. I can obey the word of wisdom and eat healthy food like watermelon."

Alyssa was for the 4th year in a row assigned a talk. She always does such a terrific job. This year she spoke on Family History. These were her words:

"Sometimes I like to hear stories about when my grandma’s and mom were little girls. And sometimes I dream about how many grand kids I will have one day and what they will like to do. All of these ancestors and future generations are linked together like this chain.

In the spirit world, the gospel is taught to those who died before receiving it. But they don’t have a body to perform the baptismal and temple ordinances. We are the center link in this chain. By doing our family history, and performing temple ordinances for those who have died ,we can keep our family bound together.

Someday, one of these future generations will discover , that I was the first person on both sides of my family to be born in the United States. And my dad is the only member of the church on his side so there’s lots of work to do there. I know that doing our family history is a way of showing love for our Heavenly Father and our families. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ Amen."

Alyssa also had the added pleasure of singing a little solo. She was able to sing the 2nd verse of "I am a Child of God." What fun to hear that sweet voice carrying out over the congregation.

I am grateful for all the time and effort wonderful, dedicated primary leaders put into sharing their talents. They are helping to raise confident, spiritual children.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Grrrrrrr, tweet,Roar

This week was parent / teacher conferences, NO SCHOOL, so we thought it would be a good time to make use of our zoo pass. Wednesday ended up being a perfect day to go. It was bright and sunny but a brisk 59 degrees. So we bundled up and went for a nice stroll around the Oregon Zoo. All the animals were out in full force. Seeing as we were one of the few families taking advantage of the day, the kids loved being able to walk around and have the exhibits to themselves.
Camden all snugly and warm
The kids always stand and observe the geyser for at least 5 min

Alyssa on a make shift swing, while waiting for Peyton to finish looking at the geyser.

rrrribit! anything is a playground at the zoo

Wow! A life size "beary". Peyton recently read a book about a Polar Bear that climbs into a little girls bedroom window and snuggles with her to keep her warm. I think he wishes this bear would do the same. His "beary" ( a plush polar bear he adores ) has been hibernating in moms closet for several months now.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mmmmm Food! / 5 Months

Do you think this boy is almost ready for starter foods?
Camden you are 5 months old now and here are some of the things we have been noticing about you lately:
* You will reach for anything that smells good. Even if you have just eaten and are full to the brim, you will strain every muscle in your body to try and get the food that someone else is eating.
*You hate to be on your belly and will scream until we help you turn over. You have turned over on your own twice now, but you were not happy about it.
* You love to laugh. Any moving object is absolutely hilarious. You have also discovered that laughing makes people notice you, and you will give a giggle just to make someone look in your direction.
* You are extremely ticklish. Under your chin, on your sides, the ends of your feet, it doesn't seem to matter where, all of them make you squirm and laugh.
* You love to sit up and stand up. In fact we have a feeling you may skip the crawling stage all together.
* Your favorites books are :
The going to bed book - by Sandra Boynton
Babies Counting 1 2 3
Clifford's noisy Day
*You love it when we sing:
Five little monkey's swinging in a tree
I have a Tiny Turtle
Rubber Ducky
*You love to play with your:
Multi colored chain link rings
Plush, shaking lion
We sure love you Camden. You have brought new life, hope and joy into our family. We can't wait to see what the next five months brings.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

It's all Over

Alyssa's Soccer team

Peyton's Soccer Team

We tried something new in sports this year and it didn't cost us a thing. A brilliant Gentlemen in the Hillsboro Stake started a stake soccer league. Chet and I always try to encourage our children to participate in various sports. The problem is that they are so expensive and it is getting increasingly more difficult to have them in sports at the same time. So when we heard about this FREE league we thought we would give it a shot. The old saying does hold true. You do get what you pay for. There were moments of frustration over teenage coaches, and Senior coach no shows. But all in all the kids had a wonderful time.

The Free league is perfect for Peyton. He spend most of his time with his head in the clouds anyway. The relaxed structure and whimsical program feed his needs of exploration. Alyssa however found it frustrating. She is mega competitive and really likes hard core practices and high octane games. I think next year we will put her in the city league and just keep Peyton floating in bliss with the Hillsboro Stakers.

Wonderful friendships were formed. I for one will miss gabbing it up with the ladies in between cheers and encouraging chants. It was a great opportunity for Alyssa and Peyton to meet new people in the Stake. Thank you Brother Gerber for seeing a need and filling it.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Wedded Bliss

We had the great honor of attending a beautiful wedding on Sunday. Our sweet neighbors ( They really are more like family, we lovingly call them Mama Seichen and Professor) invited us to attend their Daughter Hannah's wedding. They held the wedding at this gorgeous yet quaint Bed and Breakfast. It is Called Portland's White house, I'm sure you can see why. The original owner thought a lot of himself and decided to build his own, smaller scaled replica of the White House. I think we can safely say he was the President of his family. It has now been turned into a Bed and Breakfast, and has hosted many sweet little weddings.

Hannah has always been a simple, kind hearted, and multi talented girl. She looked beautiful in this Grecian cream dress with blue sash. Her smile says it all. She has definitely found the right man. Doesn't professor look dashing in his dark blue suit?

During the Luncheon all of our little monkeys fell asleep. We took this snap shot not only because it is sweet, but to show the size difference between the Seichen's and the Bui's. The Seichen's are a tall strapping family. The Bui's are cute and petite. They do say opposites attract.

One smart gentlemen came equipped with his own toy. He created a bike with a front cradle fully loaded with pillows and knickknacks. The kids had a great time taking turns riding around the block.

The day was gorgeous and the mood calm. We found this experience to be a great opportunity to discuss with the kids the difference between what we witnessed this day and a temple marriage. Alyssa kept asking us " So they will not be married anymore after they die?" We were able to remind her of the importance of eternal unions and the joy we feel because daddy and I are married for time and all eternity. You could see that knowledge fully registering for the first time.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

High School Tag

I knew eventually someone would tag us for this dreadful look down memory lane. So here it goes. I even got Chet to do it with me.

1. Did you date someone from your school?
Nancy- Yes, several, and we will leave it at that!
Chet- NO comment!!!!!

2. What kind of car did you drive?
Nancy -A Nissan Micra. I loved that car. It was a gorgeous vanilla white with blue interior. I named her Milly Vanilla. The best part was she had an 8track player instead of a radio. Awesome! We picked up a bunch of old 8tracks at the Salvation Army and would rock out to old 70's classics.
Chet- A puke green 1980 Honda Civic Hatchback. You could never drive it on the Freeway because high mileage got the engine too hot.

3. Did you pass your driver's license test on the first try?
Nancy- You better believe it.
Chet- The driving test was a cinch, but the written was a quadruple bust!

4. Were you a party animal?
Nancy- Never, I still hate being in rooms that are too loud (such a grandma)
Chet- Depends, If you consider watching college football on Saturday a party.

5. Were you considered a flirt?
Nancy-No! but others may say differently
Chet- Define flirt?

6. Were you in band, orchestra, or choir?
Nancy- Band only in 10th grade, played the flute. But I definitely was a choir girl. Choral class, and Ladies Select Choir.
Chet- Heck NO!!!!! They were psyco.

7. Were you a nerd?
Nancy- No, But I was by no means popular.
Chet- Heck No!! They were psyco too.

8. Were you on any varsity teams?
Nancy-Yes! Rugby and track. I miss rugby the most. No padding, just cleats, mud and big angry girls. What I wouldn't give to tackle someone right now!
Chet- Nope, just JV

9. Did you get suspended/expelled?
Nancy- Nope
Chet- Yep! Ask Giles

10. Can you still sing the fight song?
Nancy- I never could
Chet - Fight Song?????

11. Who were your favorite teachers?
Nancy- Ms. Marty, she was the Spanish teacher and I remember always admiring the way she dressed.
Chet- The ones that put up with my shenanigans

12. Where did you sit during lunch?
Nancy- At Home, I had a car and made the most of it. I dragged my friends home with me.
Chet- In the Quad

13. What is your schools full name?
Nancy- Lethbridge Collegiate Institute
Chet- Mountain View High (Vancouver, 1st two years), Hillsboro Union High (last two years)

14. School mascot and colors?
Nancy- Rams, green and gold
Chet- MV: Thunder, green and royal blue
Hilhi: Spartans, blue, red and white

15. Did you go to Homecoming and who with?
Nancy- Canadian, we don't waste money on such frivolous things.
Chet- Yes, Kristie Fromhold. Varsity volleyball player and good friend

16. If you could go back and do it again, would you?
Nancy- Never, I was glad to move on to college. I would do college again
Chet- definitely, as long as I have the flux capacitor with me.

17. Where did you go senior skip day?
Nancy- Don't have those. Canadian remember?
Chet- Those Canuks are lame. Hung out at the Washington Square Mall. Would have more fun, if had more money.

18. Who was your prom date?
Nancy- Dan Court. He was 6 foot something. and I am 5 foot nothing. It made for some interesting pics.
Chet- Lillana Job ( Student body President)

19. Are you planning on going to your 10 year reunion?
Nancy- Long past, had no interest, Our graduating class pretty much hated each other.
Chet- Yep! To show off my weight gain

20. Did you have a job while in high school?
Nancy- Dairy Queen, Hickory Farms, and Taking Santa Pics. Yes I worked them all at the same time. Busy Girl.
Chet- Yes! Achieving greatness at fast food joints.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Nancy's Angels

Meet the new defenders of appropriate television programming. Peyton received these Nerf guns for his birthday last month, and they have become the center of a fun family game. When watching television the kids look out for anything annoying or wrong. They then pause the T.V and shoot Nerf darts at whatever was disturbing them. For instance, Chet was watching football on Saturday. During one of the key interviews an annoying cheerleader kept popping her head up. The kids paused the T.V and filled fer face full of Nerf darts.

I do realize that this may seem disturbing to some people. But I ask you this. Would you rather have your children shooting foam darts at a screen or short range at each other?

Chet and I have also gotten in on the act. It is surprisingly fun to take aim and shoot to your hearts content. Plus a little healthy competition never hurt anyone.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I have decided to reclaim my identity. No more of this "I am a citizen of Canada, but a permanent resident of the United States" That is far to long of a statement to make every time someone asks me where I am from. So from now on I will proudly claim "I am a CANMERICAN". I truly believe there are enough of us residing in the States to merit such a phrase.

It is strange how once you have lived in a new country long enough, you seem to lose who you are. When I visit my relatives in Canada they say that I talk funny now. When I come back home to the States, my friends tell me that I sound funny. You see! I sound like a CANMERICAN!

I will forever call items by American and Canadian names. I will always spell words the American and Canadian way. So for your future reference. If you see me spell, or hear me say the following things, DO NOT be alarmed.

Theater - Theatre
Center - Centre
Neighbor - Neighbour

Romen Noodles - Ichiban
Markers - Felts
Colored Pencils - Pencil Crayons
Garbage Disposal - Garbirator

There is one phrase I have successfuly combined. Americans are known to say HUH! after there sentences, Canadians of course the ever popular EH! I choose to seek even ground, and now say HEY!

I just can't help myself. I am a CANMERICAN. Right now I am working on a theme song for all those like me. It is sung to the combined melodies of Yankee Doodle and Frare Jacques. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, October 6, 2008

The 8th Dwarf



You probably can't tell, but Camden is wearing an undershirt that has three of the seven dwarfs on it (happy, grumpy and sleepy ) Since Camden shows all of these emotions five minutes prior to bedtime, we thought it would be fun to take some snap shots of him hitting this mood cycle wearing the shirt.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

lovely neighbours

Today I am ever so grateful for kind and patient neighbours. We are blessed to live in a large culdesac, which houses many rambunctious children under the age of 9. This is perfect because my children fit in perfectly. Most days breeze past with laughter, bike riding, monster tag, and four square. However, there must be opposition in all things, therefore occasionally we experience a bad day.

As of late the new infatuation is climbing trees, in particular a large pine located in one of the back lots. All of the children in our culdesac have been told not to climb that tree, and yet daily we are prying youngsters out of its branches. Yesterday was no exception. Peyton, along with two close friends decided to make a fort amongst it's needles. All was well until an argument broke out about who should sit where in the fort. The argument turned to yelling. The yelling turned to face reddening screaming, which then turned to hitting, crying, and name calling. I could hear the fight snowballing from my open balcony doors, as I quickly tried to finish changing Camdens diaper. By the time I finished and raced outside, the two friends had been pulled home by their parents and Peyton sat crying on his bike in front of the mailbox avoiding my gaze.

The infamous tree

This is where the gratitude takes place. It would of been easy for us as neighbours to punish our own children and avoid each other for the coming weeks. But we happen to be surrounded by incredible people. Each of us has our own religion or belief system, but our family values happen to be the same. We found ourselves each grabbing our 6 year old by the hand and bringing them back outside to find some resolution. There were apologies, forgiveness, and a friendship renewal. I will always be grateful for parents who take the time to instill good values in their children. And for neighbours who try to be more then just neighbourly, but loving neighbours.