Friday, November 28, 2008

Sheldon's Mission Call

Well, today was the big opening of Sheldon's mission call. He is my youngest brother and the youngest sibling of ten of us kids. All of my brothers served missions, either foreign or foreign speaking. I served in Los Angeles and was also at the Visitors' Center there. Darrell went to the Dominican Republic, Daniel to Arcadia, California Mandarin speaking, Sam to Australia, and Roger to Guatemala. And my brothers who went overseas all got sick too. SO, hopefully Sheldon won't follow suit there.

BUT he did follow suit as to going foreign and foreign speaking. Sheldon is going to: Milan, Italy! Yeah! He will serve for two years as a missionary and share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the people there. In February, he will go to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah for a couple of months to get a jump on Italian and to refine his skills in sharing the gospel. We are so excited for him! Congratulations Sheldon!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The Robertson Family 2008 Christmas Letter

Since we're cutting back some this Christmas, we have posted our family Christmas Letter online. We don't want it to get lost in the shuffle of other December happenings, so there is a link for our letter on the upper right sidebar. Happy reading and Merry Christmas!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

Happy Birthday today Amy!!!

Darrell and Stacie and their kids came and visited us for Thanksgiving. They arrived last night while Lee was at the ward football Turkey Bowl. We enjoyed having them here and are looking forward to seeing them right after Christmas too!

Yesterday, Lee was able to come home a little early as he basically had a half-day at work. He did have to go to a training in the afternoon, but it only lasted 45 minutes and I was thankful he was home a little more yesterday!. Thanksgiving preparation started on Wednesday. Though under the weather, I made 6 pies, a pumpkin dessert and prepped the veggies for Thanksgiving Day. Here are the first pies in the oven.

TODAY: Before the big feast we played outside and enjoyed the GORGEOUS weather! Darrell took some of the older kids on a walk through the woods behind our house and he found two bonsai trees that he took home with him. The kids also had fun playing hide-n-go seek all around the house and enjoyed a little "house" Lee set up in one of the storage rooms.

Katie and Clark

Haley and Jessica

The turkey was one of the first things done! I watched a video on Food Network by Alton Brown on how to do a perfect holiday turkey. It worked great! Though it wasn't perfect all-around for Lee, he did say that he had some yummy pieces. Doesn't it look great?? It was done in 2 1/2 hours and it's my first turkey I've ever done.

The feast begins!

Another view

After some more eating and talking and Lee cleaning up--you are the BEST Lee!--we went to a park on base.

Katie, Eric and Clark

Shanna, Joseph and Jessica

Eric and Haley. Eric had a blast playing with our cars and trucks.

My brother Darrell and Lisa

Katie and Clark

Cal, Jessica, Clark and Katie

Jessica and Shanna

After the park (we counted it as our "Thanksgiving Day Run"), we had PIE of course!

Darrell and Stacie left early this evening. We wish they could have stayed longer! I am glad they took some pie with them. I think I made too much. We got everything cleaned and kids in bed before 8. Clark helped us out by falling asleep during family scripture reading at 7.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Okay, so I know I am over doing it on the whole gas price thing, but it's a $1.49 here on base.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We hope you did too!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

So, I drove by the gas station on base and it's now a $1.63. Nice.

I know I've been posting gas prices a lot, but it's SO fun to see them drop and drop and drop! Last night on base it was $1.69. On our way to Rolla for our little excursion on Saturday I saw a sign for a truck stop where fuel was $1.49! WOW! It would be very fun if it got down to $0.99 a gallon, or at least below $1.30. I just hope they stay low till after the holidays. I don't want them to go back up, but I don't mind if they do start to raise in January. I wish I had a tank so I could buy and store a year supply of fuel right now!

The past three weeks, once a week, at school Clark has had his first spelling tests. The first two he did fairly well and got a 4/5. This last one he brought home though, he received 100%! A few words he started out wrong, but apparently corrected them before the test was over. He even did great on writing his numbers too. On some he tends to write them backwards. This was the test that we didn't prepare very much for either. On his way out the door I was spelling these words to him and having him repeat them. Guess it worked! Great job Clark!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Monday Blog Readers!

I didn't have any pictures of the girls for the blog, so I took some this morning. The outfits they are wearing I got for $2.00 each at Target. Yep, each piece was $1.00! Well, the shirts were $0.94 or something like that.

A self-portrait of Cal by Cal

On Saturday Cal, Clark and I took a bus to Rolla, MO to see the Pixar movie Ratatouille. Afterwards we had pizza for lunch, saw real rats, the boys got a balloon animal, and Clark got a little rat made out of felt. Cal LOVED the rats. He was sad when we left. This whole trip was FREE. Even the ride on the bus and lunch! Thanks Armed Services YMCA!

Saturday after we got back I went grocery shopping and later we drove to Lebanon for the adult session of Stake Conference (about a 45 minutes away). The kids did pretty well. We just stayed in the foyer. While we were there we kept seeing two girls coming in and out of a nearby classroom. Towards the end of the meeting all of our kids, plus another little girl, ended up in the room. The girls were really nice and had fun with our kids. We both love going to the adult session of Stake Conference. We stopped and got a little treat and then headed home. We were sad about BYU loosing. I don't care if Utah gets to go to a BCS bowl or not. I still wish we would have beat them!

Sunday morning we returned to Lebanon, but this time not to a church building, but the local Civic Center for Stake Conference. For our church, congregations are divided up geographically. Depending on how many people live in a particular area that are members, the local congregation is called a brach--for a smaller congregation, or a ward--for a larger congregation. So many of these units, branches and wards, make up a Stake. I am not sure how many wards and branches are in our Stake, but usually it's about 10-14 branches and wards that are in the same Stake.

Twice a year, the whole Stake meets together for Stake Conference. We hear gospel messages from people in different wards and branches and also hear from the Presidency that is over the Stake. At our conference we also heard from the Mission President and his wife who are in charge of the missionaries in this area, and the Temple President and his wife who are over the St. Louis Temple. The meeting was good, our kids could have been better, but the people we sat next too were very sweet and understanding.

I think I have all the food that I need for Thanksgiving so I can avoid any last minute shopping trips. I am really liking the idea for future Thanksgivings of going out to eat or ordering pizza...

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! We are so grateful for our wonderful family and friends!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I just did a "word verification" for leaving a comment on someone else's blog. It was a good one:
gedgre. I am all about higher education and great job to those people out there who got a GED and then go on to take the GRE for graduate school!

So why not one more random thought...I read some get-out-of-debt articles my mom sent me. One person wrote how is good to pay off your house as soon as you can. I totally agree! Then the person basically wrote that having a paid for house is good because it can be borrowed against in case of an emergency. I totally disagree!

There are some things people do or say that I don't agree with, but I can see where they are coming from and understand their point of view. I cannot understand borrowing against one's home. Paid for or not! I would rather rack up the bills on a credit card. Why on earth would I borrow money against my home for an emergency just to increase the risk of loosing my home? And why would I borrow on it when I've already paid for it?! I would go sell pizzas or work at Micky D's! And WHY WHY WHY would I borrow money against my home to remodel it or ESPECIALLY TO GO ON A VACATION??? I do not understand...

I do have some pictures to post and some updates about our happenings, but I've been catching up on blogs and now it's time for bed. Good night! Don't let the frogs whistle!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Just updates...

Yesterday Clark was sick and stayed home from school. His first time! He had a fever, but he didn't have one today and went to school.

Today I accidentally closed the door on Haley's right-hand pinky. Ouch! While I was sitting in the hallway holding Haley and consoling her, Shanna was so sweet and brought Haley two blankets and a teddy bear. My girls are so sweet!

Now for the main update. Yesterday afternoon Lee said that he bid $250 on a bike stem that he really liked on eBay. And he also said that he probably wouldn't win it because there were three hours left for bidding. When he told me I was quite shocked. I said that the stem will be his only Christmas present. (Especially since our spending limit for Christmas presents for each other is $5 each--I told you we were gun-ho about getting out of debt.) Later I also wondered why he didn't ask me about it first, but I remembered that he said he probably wouldn't win it anyway. As I kept thinking about it, I knew that his current stem was kind of uncomfortable, and with him riding in 30-40 degree weather I want him to be comfortable. He is such a great husband to ride his bike to work so I can have the van since I am home with the kids. When he mentioned this huge purchase I knew we had the money, but with November almost over, December coming up, plus just paying a lot towards student loans I was taken aback. But, $250 is a lot cheaper than a new vehicle, that's for sure! Mentally, I came to terms with this big purchase--that might not even happen because three hours were left before the bidding ended.

Last night I went to a Relief Society Home, Family and Personal Enrichment meeting. It was on Visiting Teaching. The first lesson was really cute. There was bread, meat, cheese, etc for sandwiches and chips and pop for dinner. The sister first teaching mentioned some things about visiting teaching and related it to the food: being "sandwiched" for time, don't get stuck in a "pickle", don't be a big "cheese", "mustard" your courage, if you "carrot" all about your sisters then you'll contact them, etc, etc. It was cute. Our Bishop is letting us borrow tables and chairs during the holidays since we will have a lot of family here. So I got a table and chairs for Thanksgiving. We'll take these back after Thanksgiving and then get more for Christmas.

Back to the stem story. After I got home Lee started telling me about the bidding. He said he bid a dollar fifty for his first bid, but was outbid. Second bid: two dollars, but still outbid. The third bid was for two fifty and he was the highest bidder. Lee then told me with 15 minutes left he was outbid. He thought about bidding again because it was a really nice stem, but remembered my earlier surprised reaction and didn't bid. Someone won it for $2.75.

While Lee was telling me all of this I felt so BAD! I TOTALLY thought he meant $250 when he said he bid on the stem for "two-fifty". I don't know very much about bikes, but I found out last night that an ultra nice stem would be about $100 max. I also felt very extremely silly! A bike stem for $3.00 is an awesome price and obviously Lee can buy anything he wants for $3.00 without consulting me first. I do try to be a good wife! When he found out my HUGE misunderstanding--or should I say my two-hundred and fifty-dollar misunderstanding--he then knew why I seemed so shocked when he told me about his bid on eBay. The only good thing that came out of it was that it was 10mm shorter than he would have preferred. I think Lee and I are really good at communicating...I just wish I would have "communicated" earlier! So, hopefully he can find a stem soon that he absolutely loves and will be more comfortable riding his bike. He just saved us $250! Now I can go shopping. (Just kidding!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sisters, Sisters June 10, 2007

Shanna ran into the corner of the computer desk this morning. She received a nasty, little bump too! It was so sweet because while I was sitting on the couch holding and consoling Shanna, Haley started to pat Shanna's back and head. So SWEET! Later we had a snack and Shanna and Haley were feeding me. They think it's so funny to do that. Haley's quantity of food she was feeding me got bigger and bigger and I couldn't keep up!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

A few weeks ago I took Cal and the girls to story time. It was for Cal, but he did not do well. I finally took him out for a little walk in the library and we came back later and did the craft. The lady that did the craft mentioned a craft activity every Thursday morning. This past Thursday I went to it with my neighbor and her twin girls; of course Cal, Shanna and Haley came too. Cal decorated a foam leaf and then they had snacks for the kids! And it was all free. I am going to wait a little while for story time with Cal, especially since the twins are normal 18-month year olds and they don't want to sit for a 1/2 hour. We read to Cal at home anyway--it's the craft stuff that I am not good at. So this will be great!

Yesterday we took a trip to St. Louis and I went to the temple. The picture below is where we bought gas. A little while later we saw fuel for $1.71! Here on base it is $1.85--not too bad either. I hope the prices keep dropping, because then (hopefully) it will take longer to go up.

After the Temple we went shopping at both of these stores. I bought some fabric for the girls' Christmas dresses...stay tuned on that one. I want to have them done December 6th, so they can start wearing them to church the 7th. I think I'll have them wear them every Sunday in December, and then again around Valentine's Day. Anyway, I just love that there is a Hobby Lobby and an Aldi joined together! What a match!

While I was at the temple (Lee forgot to get his recommend renewed) the kids played at a nearby park for a little bit. It was COLD yesterday. Mid 30's! Notice Clark is outside and Shanna and Cal are inside the van.

The girls and Cal did go out.

Miss Shanna

Miss Haley

Cal looks cold and desperate

Clark enjoying the photos being taken of him...reminds me of you, Stephanie!

A slip-n-slide isn't the best in almost freezing weather. I wonder if Clark liked it?

Clark looking chilly too.

Last night the girls took a long time to fall asleep. It didn't help that they both had a nap in the van around 5:30pm. I went in to check on them because they were still making noise and this is what I found!

Shanna (or Haley, but I think it was Shanna) pulled the cribs together and Shanna somehow crawled into Haley's crib! Crazy. They were having fun together! Shanna is also getting into things lately. A few days ago she got on a little chair and grabbed a jar of applesauce off of the counter. She walked over to me and dropped it. Of course it broke and made plenty of glass shards. It took awhile to clean up. Lee just informed me that Shanna crawled out of her crib after her nap today. NICE!

We are having a good Sunday. The kids were pretty good in Sacrament meeting. My class seemed to go okay. I won't do a lesson this next Sunday as it's Stake Conference. We will start getting ready for Thanksgiving. My brother Darrell, his wife Stacie and family are coming for Thanksgiving and we are excited to have them. They'll be the first to stay at the Robertson Resort. And it will be my first time EVER cooking a turkey. Though I am considering a ham...

Have a wonderful week!