This week we took our biannual (semiannual) trip to Rexburg to visit Woo's sister Karen and her family. We were delighted to find their new (to us) race track painted on the basement floor. Karen and Peter told us that the track+two scooters=the best Christmas present ever. And we'd have to agree.

It rained a lot, but it didn't matter. Mostly kids just had fun playing with their cousins. Last visit Hyrum and Jake made Penelope cry. This visit she was their favorite cousin. Ruby participated in her first tea, excuse me, cocoa party. She enjoyed dressing up and acting refined with Alina and Christina. She was dubbed Princess Purity. I assume because Princess Sophistication was already taken--by Alina.

Karen, Peter, Woo and I were able to sneak away for a quick gelato date while Pete kept everyone else alive, and Karen and I left the men in charge while we went to the General Women's Conference with Ruby, Christina, Alina and Eve. Karen spent most of the time in the hall since Eve had recently discovered squawking, but I think we all enjoyed it.

By the way they were acting in Sacrament meeting, I was afraid both Moses and Linus were going to refuse to go to Primary. Luckily, I thought to steer Moses in Josh's direction, and had Herbie take Linus. They walked off feeling independent, but also safe, and I avoided that tricky mom-to-strange-teacher handoff that was sure to be a disaster.

Thanks Karen and Peter!

Whenever Penelope gets to pick a movie, she always picks a Shirley Temple one. Part of that is because they're in pink case, but I also think those slow, older movies hold her attention a little better.
Me (helping Penelope with the top snap of her jammies): Are you sure you want these on? You can't wear them outside.  
Penelope: No! They're outside jammies!

I was happy to hear Herbie and Moses laughing together at breakfast over something they'd read together in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Herbie is good about reading to his younger siblings whenever they ask.

Herbie told us his class did an art project featuring their favorite food. Here's what the other kids did: cookies, cupcakes, hamburger, fries, blueberry cake, jolly rancher, pizza. Here's what Herbie did: a salad with a carrot on top.

Me (detecting an odd smell coming from Herbie's feet): You need to change your socks every day, Herbie. You can't wear socks even two days in a row.  
Herbie: Two days? Try two weeks! 
Well, no wonder.

Linus has taken on the role of manly bug killer.
Eliza (a friend pointing from the couch at a boxelder bug): “EEEW!! A Spider!”  
Linus: I’ll get it! Can I use your shoe?”  
Eliza: No!  
Woo: You can use my shoe, Linus.  
Penelope (raising her arms and opening her eyes wide): Die it! INTO THE SKY! 
Linus (lifting the shoe): It’s mashed.   
Penelope: It’s moving!  
Eliza: It’s moving, Linus!!!  
Linus: I’m going to get a kleenesk.  
Penelope: Go get a kleeneks!
He had better success with that bug than with the spider he found in my room and hunted for full ten minutes. It didn't help that he picked up a pair of Woo's shoes that had 1" wide cleats with 1" wide spaces in between.

Archie has learned "stop it!" He says: TOPfft! TOPffit! He had one more outing in the flour, before we got smart and put the lids on tight on our ten gallon buckets.

Woo's started a few extra projects to get himself on the All Stress Diet--and he's lost 10lbs!!!

Even though probably every day I have to deal with something that's a pain in the rear, I'm also feel like I'm currently living through the best time of my life. I'm a lucky gal to have a supportive, caring husband, and that I get to spend my days with my own children, whom I love and enjoy more than anything. I enjoy the challenge of figuring out how to make things run smoother and better, and it's so fulfilling when it does. Of course, our lives would be a lot harder, if we didn't the Spirit in our home, and I'm so grateful that I know how to invite the Spirit and that I can teach those skills to my children. I'm a happy lady (even if I rarely smile :).

Hope you've all had a great week!