Sunday, May 31, 2009

Monday-Friends over for Memorial Day dinner; roasted marshmallows outback
Tuesday-Deb had her baby!!! 9 POUNDS of cute boy!
Wednesday-Cal and Clark with Lee at work while the rest went to Elden's check-up; he weighed in at 5 pounds 11 ounces, I watched my friend's kids
Thursday-Clark started summer school
Friday-Cleaned the bathrooms, enjoyed the splash park, went to Bunco with my friend Kelly (and it was completely free...I don't gamble)
Saturday-Went grocery shopping for next week, friends came over, found a turtle, have to get van fixed, Lee and I played Othello and I won (again)
Sunday-Lee home from church with Elden, Shanna and Haley (girls had runny noses), my lesson went well

Nice and brief, huh? Kelly and Chris and their family moved Saturday morning. We are so sad that they left. I got pretty teary-eyed after I had said goodbye to Kelly and was telling Lee that they had gone. Usually Lee and I are the ones leaving, not good friends moving away from us. It is sad seeing their house all empty. Can you tell I miss them?

Kelly and I went to Bunco together. It was pretty fun and I am glad I went. They had awesome prizes there! But of course I didn't win anything. One lady asked me if I had any kids and I said I had 5. She was really surprised! (I LOVE it when people are surprised. Or when they think I am pretty young for having five kids.) After I got back from Bunco I was talking to a different friend and she was saying how she paid to be in a Bunco group. I was surprised. I have two other friends that play Bunco, and I thought it was just a game that people played. I didn't know that some paid money to be in it. Anyway, the Bunco night here on base is completely free.

Today is Elden's due date. I was reading through our experience that Lee had recorded. I am grateful it is over. And I am grateful for the human tendency to forget. It makes the experience seem less painful.

Have a great week!

Monday Night with friends

Tuesday with Kelly's kids. Shanna LOVED the tire swing and held on VERY well!

The turtle

Clark outside with his jamamas, as he calls them

A summer evening

Fudgey Cocoa No-Bake Treats
From Hershey Kitchens (with Ruth's variations)

3 c. quick-cooking rolled oats
1/2 c. peanut butter
2 c. sugar
1/2 c. margarine (don't use butter)
1/2 c. milk
1/3 c. cocoa
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Line cookie sheet with wax paper or foil. Spray with non-stick cooking spray so the cookies won't stick. Measure oats and vanilla and set aside.

Combine sugar, margarine, milk, cocoa and peanut butter in medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a rolling boil and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from heat.

Stir in vanilla. Quickly stir in oats. Drop mixture by the spoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet. Cool.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Clark was messing on the computer and typed this into the search bar. I thought the "Did you mean:" suggestion was funny.

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Did you mean: cgfdddgdhghhgfghgsdhdhkagbx75421098765432

Thursday, May 28, 2009

My 300+ containers of milk can't be donated. The National Milk Bank doesn't accept milk from persons who have received blood in the past twelve months. I had a blood transfusion of three units during my c-section. Oh well. I can't use it. I have 100 containers here at home besides.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Our quiver is is our van...

All five kids in the Villager

I am finally updating my blog. It seems like I haven't done it in a long time...even though it's just been about 2 weeks. I won't even try to make it short. I did make a few separate posts to categorize the pictures better. (Scroll down for those.)

It has been great having Elden home. I was surprised to learn about the many doctor visits he will have. It makes sense, the dr. wanting to keep tabs on a preemie; I just wasn't anticipating all the appointments. As of right now, Elden goes in once a week for a blood test, and goes in once a week for a weight/temperature check. I really like his pediatrician here on base, so that is good. One thing I really liked is that Dr. Smith told me information, he just didn't assume I knew what to do in caring for Elden. And he did tell me things that I didn't know.

Elden is still anemic. He is on iron drops, plus a multivitamin. He would take the iron drop pretty well, but struggled with the multivitamin. He would spit over half of it out, and then gag for a few minutes after. We finally started mixing it in with my pumped milk. So now Elden gets a bottle once a day with a little of my milk plus the multivitamin and iron, tinted a 70's green. He takes the "fortified" milk very well--which is good. I don't want him to loose the skill of drinking out of a bottle! (My girls did when they were about 10 months old.)

The adjustment to now having five kids all together has been good. Elden doesn't seem to mind the extra noise one bit. The first two nights that he was home were rough=very little sleep for me and Lee. For me, my biggest adjustment was with two kids: having a toddler and a little baby, plus re-learning the baby stuff over again. Even when we brought the twins home it didn't seem like a big deal. Yes, there was more work involved, but mentally it was easy. And now, having one baby after having twins is very easy. I am glad the nights with infant twins are over. Those memories of the twins being babies have been coming back to me since Elden has been home. (Good luck Lorrie and Becky!) There are some things about having a baby that I will never miss.

Elden has gone through SO many diapers since he has been home. He is constantly having small stools in his diapers. I need to ask the pediatrician about this...any thoughts Jolene, Amanda S. or Sally? He has only been home 13 days and has already gone through 110 diapers! I feel bad for the kid. I wonder if it's the multivitamin or the iron.

I looked online the other day for preemie diapers and found a good deal on Elden will be in preemie's for awhile, so I bought a bunch. I got free shipping, plus an additional $11 off my order! I went ahead and got the girls their diapers for the month of June.

This week Lee took Monday and Tuesday off. My friends moved this past week and I wanted to help them out. Lee and I watched their kids on Monday and then had them over for dinner that evening. Tuesday we watched their kids again, at the last minute.

Tuesday night we had some other friends over for dinner. They are moving too!!! I wasn't expecting them to move for another year, so this was a sad surprise for me. I am very sad that they are leaving. It happened to be one of their son's birthday that day, so we had a little celebration with them. My friend's kids were so excited to see the baby, it was cute. And the birthday boy asked if he could hold Elden for me while I ate. How sweet!

Clark and the birthday boy were in the same class at school with the same teacher.

We are going to miss you guys!!!!

The next day Elden had his little check-up at the hospital. I figured out how to get the girls and Elden in the double stroller! Once Elden gets bigger it won't work anymore though. Cal went to Lee's work while I took the rest of the clan to the appointment. When I picked up Cal I met Lee inside so the ladies at work could see Elden. After that we went to the park and met up with two of my friends and their kids (and Lee came and ate lunch there).

Last week I exercised on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. Thursday Lee was at work, so I took all the kids with me (minus Clark). There is a community center really close to our house with some nice treadmills and a little play room for the kids. Plus there is cable TV in the exercise room and I let the kids watch some PBS shows. After exercising I went to another community center and picked up two trays of free flowers. Sorry, I don't know the names, but I got some white flowers, and purple flowers. They give out the free flowers every year to people who live on base. Pretty nice! We also did lots of cleaning on Thursday.

Friday was Clark's last day of kindergarten. He had a somewhat bumpy year, especially with switching schools two months into the school year. I even questioned myself if I made the right choice in putting him in. His birthday is in July, so he is still 5 and could have started kindergarten this fall instead. Well, now that it is all over, I am confidant that he went in at a good time. He isn't the smallest in his class (average to even a little taller than average) and he has done just fine with learning how to read and other skills. Plus on his standardized testing, he is in the 99th percentile for the nation--above average. Yeah! Kind of weird that one year of school is done with. We have several more to go!

Friday night we watched Kit Kittredge: An American Girl. It was a cute movie with a fun plot. Thanks for recommending it Mom and Dad R. I forgot to cancel Netflix on time, so now we are doing one more month. They don't give partial refunds, so we are trying to use it as much as possible before June 9th rolls around.

Yesterday I went to the Stake Relief Society Enrichment meeting. And I went all by myself. Thanks Lee! It was in Rolla, so I had a little drive each way too (it's 30 miles away). I went to three classes: What's for Dinner, Stretching Our Dollar and FHE Ideas. They were good classes, but I especially liked the FHE Idea class. I got some great ideas. Two websites that I am excited about are: and The ideadoor has free FHE lessons from the Deseret Book that were put together from 2004-2006. Chocolateonmycranium has flannel board stories from the Friend all put together that you can just print off and then cut out the figures. And many of you know that has free FHE packets that sound really good too.

Once a week members in my church having Family Home Evening (aka FHE). It is usually held on Monday night. It's a time where we get together as a family and have a spiritual lesson on a gospel topic, anywhere from learning about Moses parting the Red Sea or about learning to be honest. We also sing songs and have a treat. Other things are included too depending on how a family does it, like reading from the scriptures, or having a family member share a talent. It's a great night to learn more about the scriptures and Christ and be together as a family.

Last night we took the kids on a drive after their baths and read scriptures in the van. Our objective worked for 3/4 of the older kids. Cal, Shanna and Haley fell asleep about 10 minutes into our ride. Before our ride Haley was pulling a folding chair into the kitchen and it fell on her right big toe. It cracked the nail and bleed a little underneath the skin. It's a bit swollen too. Poor girl.

We saw this right before the drive. Can you see the second rainbow?

Today Lee took Clark, Cal and Shanna to church. I stayed home with the Elden. Since Haley's toe is still sensitive, she stayed home too. I figured a shoe or even a flip-flop on her foot would be uncomfortable. Lee also taught my lesson for my class that I teach every week--Gospel Principles. We'll keep switching for at least two more weeks. I am not sure how long to keep Elden home from church. But I wanted to do it at least a month.

Thank YOU everyone, for the many emails, and comments and love and encouragement. It's a been a long road, and we still have a bit to go. The support and love from all of you has made the journey bearable and even enjoyable.

Check out the other posts below. If anything, there are some cute pictures that I am sure you will enjoy!

My poll on grocery spending closed several days ago, and here are the results (a little easier to read than the poll on my sidebar.) 76 people voted. The numbers on the left represent the number of people who voted. Sorry for the poor quality. I made the graphs and then couldn't paste them into blogger. We can't convert them into pdf files either as we don't have the software for that. So, these are pictures we took of the graphs off of our computer.

Also, I have included my menu below for the month of June. Most dinner items I or Lee make. We basically don't buy any prepared meals. We do buy chicken nuggets about once a month. Since we are still working on getting out of debt, we don't spend as much as I would like on groceries, though I do feel that we eat just fine and I am satisfied with our current diet. We usually just have a main dish and a vegetable. Plus with little kids, our family doesn't eat as much as one with teenagers. And the other meals: for breakfast we have cereal, oatmeal, or eggs. Lee will make German pancakes or pancakes on Saturday. For lunch we have sandwiches or leftovers. We don't buy a lot of meat. Normally just ground beef and frozen chicken tenders and an occasional beef/pork roast or pork chops. Of course there would be more menu options for us if we bought more meat or even seafood. (I am not a fan of seafood, though I don't mind fish.) Meat here at the commissary is a pretty good price, but money wise for us, it's cheaper to buy less meat.

For snacks we have crackers, or apples, or occasionally yogurt. We will do popcorn sometimes too. I love the Orville Redenbacher's Simply Salted popcorn and I buy a box about once a month. We mainly drink water and milk. I buy three gallons of milk a week. Usually I will buy 2 things of frozen orange juice per week. We will sometimes buy pop/soda for a birthday or a get-together with friends (MAYBE once a month, about every 6 weeks on average) and recently I started buying the $0.15 packets of Kool-aid. (I have only bought 4 packets so far. Two last week, and two for this week.) There is a clear watermelon flavored kind, and we had that when our friends came over. I love that it is clear! We do buy ice pops a lot. The kids usually eat those during scripture study or when Clark would get home from school. We also buy ice cream fairly frequently. If we have cookies I make them. My kids really like a no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookie that I make. And we also love chocolate chip cookies. Basically, all the desserts we eat we make--except ice cream or candy--and we don't buy candy very often either.

If any of you have an Aldi that you can shop at, if anything, there are two items I love getting there and would recommend: animal crackers and tortillas. I LOVE their animal crackers. They are so good you see! And, I LOVE their tortillas. The tortillas are only $.99 for 10 and the texture and taste is better than Mission Tortillas, in my opinion. There are also other great deals at Aldi, but these are my top favorites. Plus I also love their store brand Belgium chocolate. SO GOOD! But, not necessarily something I buy all the time. (I should get a year supply though!)

As you will see we rarely go out to eat. The only time that we are planning on "going-out" is when we will buy a pizza on the way home from a temple trip the middle of June.

June Menu

1 Monday: Tacos
2 Tuesday: Macaroni and cheese
3 Wednesday: Pancakes and eggs
4 Thursday: Cheesy potato casserole
5 Friday: Black beans and green chilies with rice
6 Saturday: Pasta salad

7 Sunday: Croissants with cream cheese filling
8 Monday: Baked potatoes
9 Tuesday: Beef stroganoff
10 Wednesday: Vegetable stir-fry
11 Thursday: Homemade Chicken noodle soup
12 Friday: Spaghetti
13 Saturday: Pizza from Little Caesar's

14 Sunday: Beef roast with potatoes
15 Monday: Tuna pinwheels (like cinnamon rolls, but with a tuna mixture inside)
16 Tuesday: Chicken nuggets and shoestring fries
17 Wednesday: Bean Dip (homemade refried beans, sour cream, cheese, tomatoes) with chips
18 Thursday: Chicken and cream cheese gravy over rice
19 Friday: Macaroni and cheese
20 Saturday: Hamburgers and homemade french fries

21 Sunday: Stuffed Shells
22 Monday: Black beans and green chilies with rice
23 Tuesday: Quesadillas with leftover black beans and rice
24 Wednesday: Broccoli soup
25 Thursday: Cornbread chili casserole
26 Friday: Spaghetti
27 Saturday: Roasted potatoes cubes

28 Sunday: Grilled cheese sandwiches with baked beans
29 Monday: Mashed potatoes
30 Tuesday: Green pepper casserole with rice, hamburger, and canned diced tomatoes

The whole kaboodle May 17, 2009

I cut my on the 16th...didn't turn out too bad.

On the 15th Lee took Clark and Cal on the Father and Son's Campout.

Earlier on the 15th, much to my sorrow, Jeff and Lois left after a week of being with us. They are now in the DC area! Watch out DC, the Heits have arrived!

You can that Jeff was quite popular here

One night Reed fell asleep in Elden's car seat

Reed seemed to enjoy being here.

Uncle Sam gave us a bunch of candy and one night I let the kids go to town on some chocolate

On Tuesday after Elden was discharged...a picture with one of my wonderful nurses while I was on bedrest.

Elden in an open crib...getting ready to go home! (May 12th)

Another one of my favorite nurses, Sally. When I said good-bye to her, it was like saying goodbye to my "hospital" mom. The picture turned out kind of weird.

Elden again in an open crib!!!

My antepartum buddy, Lorrie. Though we never met while I was on bedrest, her twins were born the same day Elden was born. We later met up in the NICU.

My milked that I pumped at the Ronald McDonald House. If I counted right, there are 220 containers here in this picture. And at the hospital there were at least 70 more. All of that milk is at the hospital. I am working on trying to donate it all. I have about 100 containers of milk here at home that I will keep.

Sam bought HUGE chocolate bars for the girls and had really tiny ones for Clark and Cal. Clark wasn't so sure about it...

On the 10th--Mother's Day, we had another little celebration for the girls 2nd birthday. It was fun having the Heits here for that.

The Thomas tent looks a little too freaky in this picture...

For Mother's Day Lee made me a candy bouquet!!! He did a fabulous job and it was YUMMY!

During the day on Mother's Day Lee made awesome chocolate chip cookies and gave them to the mom's that he home teaches. (He even did the ribbon to tie the bags closed!)

This is Jolene, Elden's primary care nurse. I FINALLY met her a few days before Elden went home. She was also born at 28 weeks!

ALSO on Mother's Day our van reached 180,000 miles! We were given the van in 2004, and at the time it had roughly 78,000 miles on it. 100,000 miles in 4 years, not too bad!

A couple of random pictures for you...
Haley with Padamine inspired hair

Cal with women BCGs