Amateur Face Paint, Purchases and Super Heroes

Linus spent a couple days this week smeared in face paint done by amateurs. Here's my 30 second old man for his Hundred Day party.

And here's the remains of his Dalmatian face for apparently his 101 Day party (schools these days and their parties... )

He also was really, really excited to get his new walkie-talkies in the mail. He's been saving up for these for months, and I purposely did not buy them for Christmas so he could buy them himself. He thinks the clips on the back are a pretty nifty feature; they can be worn like holsters.

Penelope also was due for a purchase, so she browsed the aisles in search of the perfect toy. She brought me this doll, "I think it's Elsa." I looked the doll over, saw that there was a button. Penelope's face lit up into the most beatific look of excitement and astonishment when the doll blared, "Let it Go." I knew I had to let her buy it, even though it's every parent's worst nightmare.

She hugged that doll so tight, and whenever anyone would walk by us in the store she would push the button with such a proud look on her face, as if she knew that anyone who heard the doll would immediately agree that she had found awesomest purchase in the whole place.

Penelope had a party of her own--the Super Hero party. She went as The Mopping Princess.

Archie is such a pleasant mother's companion. I couldn't ask for a more perfect youngest child. I go to the library and he types quietly on the computer next to me. I visit a neighbor, he pulls a car out of his pocket and drives it quietly up and down the coffee table leg. I work at home and he figures out his letters.

Of course sometimes he gets mad (like we all do)---"... AND I'm not inviting you to my mom party!"

I've been so pleased for Herbie to stop resisting and really get into Ralph Moody's Little Britches series (I think you would really like them, Earl, if you haven't already read them. Don't be put off by the name :). He's requested all of them and read the third one in three days. It seems like I have to remind him there are good books out there every winter, but this year I was especially vigilant because his back-to-school blessing mentioned the impact the good books he would read would have on him and his future family.
Herbie (after explaining to his younger siblings what constipation is): I know it sounds 
fun..., but it's not.

Ruby's still reading anything and everything. It's no problem getting her to read good books; she's interested in everything from George Washington Carver to E. Nesbit to The Giver. At parent teacher conferences we were happy to hear that she continues to work great with others, is kind to everyone (even those who are different or don't easily fit in), and a new one... is really great at setting high goals for herself and going above and beyond what is expected of her on projects.

Moses bore his testimony today, which was a fun surprise. It was an even better surprise when he stood up and said that he knew we should honor our parents and he thanked us for being so nice to him and teaching him to do his chores so he could know how to work when he's a dad.

Moses was terrified to ask the woman we visited today for a glass of water and wouldn't do it for several minutes, so this was an especially big deal for him, and he was on cloud nine for a long time after; he felt so good.

Woo did not go snowboarding at all this week. Because of proximity and work hour flexibility, he gets to be choosy about the snow and just doesn't go if it's not awesome. He went cross-country skiing a few times instead and enjoyed that.

Woo also bore his testimony today. Also about the temple. In short: his life is much happier and more enjoyable since he started going more frequently.

I felt great for most of this week (thank goodness!). I think we might all be out of our January funk. I just keep doing what I'm always doing: mothering, wifing, family history, writing, exercising, and occasionally (for an extra dose of fun) sketching.

That's all for our week. Hope yours was great!

Testimony Below:

A year or two after my mission I was sitting in a Relief Society lesson taught by my friend Karly. Karly had recently been through the temple a few months before and she said that since receiving her endowment she had noticed that her prayers were being answered more quickly and more easily.

When she said that I had memories of my prayers and their answers flash through my mind and the Holy Ghost told me that what she had said was also true for me, even though I had never realized it before.

I don't fully understand all the blessings of the temple, but I know my life is much more peaceful because of regular temple attendance than it otherwise would be, and I definitely know my Heavenly Father hears and answers my prayers. I also believe that the temple enhances the blessings of all the other commandments I manage to keep. And all of it is made possible through the atonement of Jesus Christ.

I love my Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ and I know they live.