Thursday, March 27, 2008

Happy Easter--and all the great things that go along with it!

This Easter snuck right up on us but we had a great time anyway. Friday night we began the celebrations by dyeing hard boiled eggs. We ended up with some real works of art. I think my favorite was the green monster hands which Emmeline created by placing her whole hand into the dye cup when she was trying to get out an egg. She decided that was a much quicker method of gathering the eggs then trying to balance them on a little spoon. Truth be told. . .it is easier that way. What a smart little girl. :) We also had an egg spinner which we purchased at Wal Mart last year for 75% off. We've been waiting a whole year to try the sucker out and we were not disappointed. It was a lot of fun banging the top down and watching the egg spin around. It definitely created more action (or at least more noise) then the usual drop and wait method of my youth.

The Easter Bunny came to our house and on Saturday morning the girls found baskets full of goodies. It was so funny to see how differently they went through their baskets. I know that age has something to do with it but perhaps it is also indicative of their differing personalities as well. Emmeline went through hers slowly. As she found a new item, she would forget about the rest of the basket and want only to play with the toy she found. Brett and I sort of had to coax her into looking at all of her new little gadgets. Mabel on the other hand, just liked to pull stuff out. It seemed as though her objective was to empty out her basket as quickly as possible, occasionally sucking on something that looked especially tasty (plastic eggs, sunglasses. . . .you know the really good stuff) then discarding those items to get back on task and finish unloading all the goods. Basically, it was just hilarious!

On Sunday we had a nice meeting at church. Of course, Easter is always a special occasion to remember the atonement and resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I love how joyful the Easter hymns are. "He is risen, He is risen. . .Tell it out with joyful voice! He has burst His three days' prison; Let the whole wide earth rejoice! Death is conquered, man is free. Christ has won the victory." What a wonderful truth and what a glorious gift.

We finished up the holiday with one more easter egg hunt here at our house, a delicious traditional easter feast of ham, funeral potatoes and of course deviled eggs, and a special family devotional which consisted of telling Emmeline the story (the two year old version) of Christ's Atonement, death and resurrection and watching the Living Scriptures movie "He is Risen."

All in all, it was a truly wonderful holiday!!

Great Adventurers

This summer the Zoo is offering camel rides. Emmeline really wanted to try it out so we let her (how often do you get to ride a camel. . .) I remember when I was young and got to ride an elephant at Wildlife Safari in Roseberg Oregon. I dont remember much else about the wildlife safari. . .just riding the elephant. Anyhow, Emmeline loved every second of our camel ride on 'Big Joe' and as we got off she exclaimed, "more more." I told her we couldnt ride it again right away. I thought we might be in for a little tantrum but she took a second to compose herself and said "okay mommy." I was very proud of her. Unfortunately they wouldn't allow riders under 2 years old so Mabel is going to have to wait a while before she gets to ride a camel. I think she was just happy to get out of her stroller and play with daddy while Em and I waited in the line. We are very excited for another fun filled year at the zoo!!

On the Hunt

Here is a shot of Emmeline searching for easter eggs at our church's play group easter egg hunt.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Play Group Easter Egg Hunt

On Friday March 21 our ward play group had a super fun activity. We met at the park and had an Easter egg hunt. Each mom brought 10 candy filled plastic eggs for each child who was participating in the hunt. Then, while the kids were busy sliding down the slides and swinging on the swings, a couple of moms and a couple of the oldest children went out and hid all the eggs. When the hiding was finished the kids all lined up and ran to collect 10 eggs. It was so much fun. We had children there between the ages of 6 months old (Mabel) and 11 years old. I think it was fun for everyone and it was a great way to have a big easter egg hunt that wasnt a lot of work or to expensive for anyone. Emmeline loved finding the eggs and putting them in her basket!!!

The Squirrel Drama Continues. . . .

Well our squirrel resident has not been caught yet. Last saturday Brett climbed up there and found a huge nest. Apparently the little bugger had been quite busy creating the perfect home for itself. Brett pulled out as much of the nest as he could get to and also closed up the hole in the siding where the squirrel was coming in and out. I was so proud of Brett for all his work. Then--dum da dum dum--Sunday morning the scratching sound returned. Apparently the squirrel did not appreciate being evicted and began scratching out a new hole. This time it made the hole in the wood. Yesterday (Tuesday), our animal control guy,Tyler,came by and put a trap in the new hole. Basically it was the kind of trap where if the squirrel entered the hole at all--snap--it would be dead. I was a bit concerned because we would have a dead squirrel hanging from our roof until we called and had Tyler come take it down. I didnt think that would be the most pleasant sight in the world.(Although it might be a strong warning to any other squirrel who had thoughts of moving in). But I wanted the squirrel gone so we let the trap go in and began waiting. All day, each time I approached the house I would warily check out the top right corner of the roof and sigh with relief that I didnt have a dead squirrel hanging there. I figured it would probably happen this morning since we usually hear the squirrel working in the roof in the morning. Well this morning came and so did the usual scratching. The squirrel stayed away from the trapped hole and began biting and clawing a new hole
back into the siding. I couldnt believe it. Brett went outside and there was the squirrel, just sitting there watching him. It didnt even run away. We decided that if we had a bb gun that squirrel would be a great target so this morning we went and bought a bb/pellet gun. If we hear the squirrel tomorrow morning. . .we are going to settle this the true southern way.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Dancing in the Rain #2

Does this look like fun or what!!!!

Just Singing and Dancing in the Rain

There is just about nothing that Emmeline likes more then venturing outside during a rainstorm or going outside right after it rains and splashing in the puddles. I happen to also love splashing in the rain, so it works out pretty well. I was happy to find this adorable Winnie the Pooh rain slicker for a dollar fifty at a local consignment sale. Hurray for rain! Hurray for sales!

Laughing Mabel

It is a little difficult to see Mabels face because she is bouncing up and down, but her little laugh is so sweet!!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Attic Attack

This story begins over a month ago. I'm sure I should have been keeping a running blog with updates but I didnt. So now I'll write up the whole story here. . .sorry it seems so long. In January Brett and I were continually being awoken at ridiculous hours in the morning (6ish- - -hey, its ridiculous for me, I know my early morning seminary family is laughing at me) by a scratching sound coming from directly overhead. There is nothing overhead except for an empty attic. After a couple days of waking up to this intrusive sound, we decided something needed to be done. Sure, I could have put my head up there myself and checked things out but I am a huge wimp and I kept having visions of a killer squirrel flying, yes, flying at my face and scratching out my eyes leaving me for dead and my two daughters motherless. (perhaps my visions were a little dramatic). Needless to say, we called up an animal pest control guy. He came over and sure enough found evidence of a squirrel living in our house. Apparently there were nut bits around and some insulation was being nested. He also found an opening in our siding where the squirrel could easily enter. He set up some traps and we waited and waited. He kept checking the traps but getting nothing. After a couple of weeks he determined that he misdiagnosed the problem and explained that we were probably hearing something smaller. He showed me one of the traps which he had set up completely covered in sunflower seeds and which when he showed it to me-didn't have a trace of sunflower seed anywhere to be found. Magic. He explained that had a squirrel been munching on those, the trap would have sprung, so it must be a different varment, perhaps a rat or something. Great. I'm not gonna lie. The sound of "squirrel" is much less repulsive to my ears then that of "rat". Anyhow, our pest control expert set some rat traps and we waited some more. Then last friday he came by and found two unfortunate little mice caught in the rat traps. Our pest control man chuckled. . ."All this for two little mice" and explained that they had a separate mice poison operation which we could pay for. (He did set up 4 complimentary mouse traps in the attic which we could keep). He said that if we had any more trouble we could feel free to give him a call. Keep in mind, throughout all of these traps being set up . . .every couple of days, the scratching would return. Always in the morning.

Now the story gets really exciting. Yesterday, despite the dead mice in the traps, the scratching was back. Now, I may not be a pest control expert, but I knew that the sound was not being made by a mouse. It was to loud, to big. Then it was back again this morning. I asked Brett if he would bring the ladder upstairs. I was going to be brave and try and get a look at our new resident for myself. Brett, being the brave and gentlemanly man that he is, offered himself to go up into the attic instead. Since Brett is the protector of the family. .. . I readily let him prove his bravery. He poked his head up in the attic and didnt see anything. Drat. We continued on with our morning. Just as Brett was about to walk out the door and head to work, we heard the busy little bugger back to work in the attic. This time I told Brett to go all the way in and just try to scare it a bit whilst I stood guard outside. I watched the hole where the pest was entering and exiting. I dont know why, but I was obsessed with seeing it and knowing for sure, once and for all, what was up there. After a couple of minutes. . .I saw the little head poke out. Our "friend" pulled its little body and tail up onto the roof. It was most certainly a little grey squirrel. I wished that I had thought to bring my camera out. But there stood the little critter for a couple of seconds before vanishing away into the forest behind our house. I have since recalled the animal control guy and explained that we did most certainly have a squirrel. He is going to come back and start the trapping process again on wednesday. I wish him luck, it seems as though we have an extraordinarily intelligent squirrel residing with us. If only it would refrain from scratching in the morning, I might even consider letting it stay and guard the house while we are away. I can envision it now, any intruder who attempts to enter the house will be met with a squirrel flying, yes, flying towards his face, claws outstretched, ready to scratch out some eyes.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Goin Fishin

Bowling in Action

Here is a clip of Em in action at the bowling alley. You can read about our adventure in an earlier post. :)

Swing Swing Swing