Saturday, March 31, 2012

T.J.'s Heavenly Drive

Once we finished the rooster hunt and got back to work, Jim finished bringing us the road base. He brought us two loads. After dumping the first, he took Hunter, Cody and Jared with him to load up the dump truck and haul more over. Jared drove his skid steer back (It was at Jim's house. I love having Jim and Cherie live one minute away from us. It's so fun!) After dumping the second load of road base out front, Jim pushed it all around and evened it out with the skid steer. It's so nice to get this in. We get so much mud here when it rains.

Jared had to leave for Priesthood conference, so he couldn't take the skid steer back while Jim drove the dump truck home, so next in line was... T.J.!!! He was so excited! Jim told him to drive slow and stay to the side and he'd follow him, even though T.J. knows how to drive pretty well now.
 Of course I had to get pictures!

 And he's off.

 It's about a mile from our house to Jim and Cherie's. 

A mile of T.J. being awesome as he drove the skid steer down the road.

Man... he's getting old!

And so am I.

Our road base.
Jim is so awesome to always help us. He and my Dad are so handy with all their fun equipment they have (to play on... hee, hee!).

Redneck Fun

Lately we've been having problems with some roosters and a hen coming over to our place to eat our food, and irritate our chickens. Not to mention show our chickens how to cross the road (No this isn't one of those "Why'd the chicken cross the road jokes").

The roosters were Frank's... our neighbor who died on Christmas. He raised chickens like no one I'd ever seen before. He'd hatch 30 or so at a time, usually about every month. Needless to say, it wasn't unusual to look over at his place and see a Mama Hen walking in the grass with 20 or so chicks following behind. When he died, the family and city tried to catch as many of his chickens as they could, but there were a few stragglers left behind. And they seemed to find or house.

They drive us nuts.


They are loud, obnoxious roosters who crow even at 3:00 in the morning sometimes. They make a mess and poop everywhere. And attack our hens constantly. Besides, I wanted to plant our garden (it's time to get the peas and carrots in), and I knew they'd be right there eating the seeds, so we decided to take matters into our own hands.

 Look at this fearsome bunch. Pellet gun and blow dart gun. What Rooster in their right mind would come around this bunch?! Especially the cross-eyed boy!

 That Rooster would. He's in the horse corral. Makes me irritated just looking at him.

 Jim was bringing us some road base this afternoon and had to get in on the fun.

 We chased those Roosters everywhere. We shot them around our place. Then they'd run in the field out back, or down in the ditch. So we'd go around, find them again, and POW.
Then the game would start all over again.
 OK... really... there is a joke with these Roosters.
"Why'd the Roosters cross the road? Because Frank died."
It's a terrible joke, we know.

But it's true.
 While chasing the Roosters, we found buried in the ditch under the culvert pipe, eggs the hen had layed. So now instead of shooting the hen, too, we want to catch her and keep her.
Hope she lives since Jim got her.

 Here he is folks... one of the meanest, sharp shootin'est, cowboys who ever did  draw his Blow Dart Gun!

 I mean.... (ha, ha!)

He looks like one of those actors from an old musical who's about ready to break into a tap dance with his top hat and cane.
You never know what's up with this kid.
He's such a comedian.
 But he's still a good shot with his blow dart gun.

Cody and his spear. He didn't have his blow dart gun or bb gun outside so he decided to stab the roosters when they came by him.
Unfortunately the roosters finally got smart and took off across the street, in an area where the guns couldn't go. 

But they'll be back.

And so will we.

My Cute Hunter/Protector of the garden.
(Love this picture.)

Although we didn't quit kill the Roosters, we got some good shots in, and a ton of fun! Yes, it's redneck fun, but oh my heck... it was a good time! I love seeing these boys out to get their kill. Too bad T.J. wasn't around. He'll probably think twice before going to the store next time with Grandpa and Kai.

And to those Roosters who think they got away, but will be back... let me remind you...

I'm usually home.... and a very good shot!

Hey, I did win "Annie Oaklie" one time against the Drury girls! And that's sayin' something!

Mwahahaha! (evil laugh)

Conference Weekend

I love General Conference Weekend! Seriously, it's one of my favorite weekends of the year! And the fact that we have it twice a year makes it even better.
This year we got a bingo game for the kids to play while they listen. But they had other ideas of what to do during conference. About 5 minutes before the morning session was to start, all three boys were looking for notebooks. T.J. and Cody found theirs, but Hunter was running desperately through the kitchen and living room and finally said, "I can't find Heavenly Father!" Meaning his notebook that has a picture of Jesus on the front (a birthday present from the primary). We found it and the boys settled down quietly to watch conference.
They told me they wanted to take notes instead of playing bingo today, and then maybe play bingo tomorrow. How freaking cute and grown-up is that?! I was so impressed. So of course I had to get the camera.
 I love how Hunter writes. And look how organized he was... numbering them one through six. He definitely takes after me... an organized momma's boy! He was so proud!

 Cody didn't want to pose for a picture. He was too busy listening. Good boy Cody!

(Ignore the ugly beast of a chair. Jared loves that thing. He's had it since he was little and when his parents wanted to get rid of it, he immediately took it. It's ugly, so old, and not very comfortable. But he loves it. Someday I'll win and it will be gone.)

T.J.'s list next to a picture of some cowboys. So typical of him. I love it!

I kept telling them I thought it was awesome they were taking notes, and finally it came out. T.J. said, "We're taking notes so we can answer Dad's questions and show him we listened."
Ha ha! Smart boys! They definitely passed that quiz.

They did good and listened well for an hour.

Then Cody and I played catch with a plastic Easter egg, while T.J. and Hunter tried to play Monkey in the Middle. And I realized something during this game... Cody is excellent at catching! And I mean EXCELLENT! I think this boy needs to get into baseball. He was catching them left and right, and even the ones above his head (you know... the kind that fly right above you that the trained catchers can catch without even a thought of what to do kind). Let's just say that was one of the reasons why I didn't listen to much of conference the rest of the morning. I was shocked at how well he did. And excited!

Hey, at least we got a good hour's worth in. 

P.S. Wasn't Pres. Packer's talk AWESOME! SO far... my favorite!

Monday, March 26, 2012

New Boots

I love getting new boots. There's nothing like it. I love the smell, the feel of the tough leather, and how clean they are... cause let's face it, when you're a cowboy/girl, they don't stay clean for long. At least around here any way.

Then again, I love a good pair of worn in boots. The ones that fit your feet just right and show the story of your life with the worn out look.

I guess it's safe to say I love any kind of boots.

It was Hunter's turn for new boots. His old ones were on the verge of not being able to be called boots any more. The seams had come unsewn and the leather could literally be pulled up to reveal his socks. But cute little Hunter still wore them. He has a hard time parting with clothes and boots. But even he knew it was time for some new ones.

So we headed into IFA. He looked all through the boot section and spotted the John Deere boots. He threw them on so fast and started struttin' around. Granted he looked good in them, but there was a slight problem. The John Deere boots had doubled in price! 'Bout made me sick! We used to be able to get a good pair of them for $45.00, and now they were $80! Ridiculous! I love John Deere but I'm not paying $80 for a pair of boots that will be grown out of before they are worn out. He's the last kid of mine which means there aren't any others to take over the boots once he's finished with them.

I felt so bad telling him we couldn't get those. I told him they were too much. Hunter then said very sternly, "What... you don't want me looking good?!" The things that come out of that boys mouth. I couldn't stop laughing. He's such a character.

Finally he decided he liked these boots instead so we got them.
Once Hunt put them on there was no taking them off. Jared had to throw Hunter up on the counter to check out. The girl who checked us out was our neighbor. She had a good laugh at Hunter like we all do.

I love that kid. I love his imagination and the things that come out of his mouth. He's sure a character. It's so fun to see his personality come out more and more as he gets older. Now if only we could get him to stop wearing his size 6 wranglers when he wears an 8. He looks like he's wearing tights. Hopefully one of these days he'll like his new clothes, too.


I just joined pinterest today. Not sure what I'm doing yet but it looks fun. I can see why so many get hooked and can spend hours on this thing. If you want to follow me go to
I always told myself I wasn't going to join. It sounded like another thing I'd waste my time on. But I've seen so many cute things on there that is was tempting me more and more. And I want to try and sell my book using pinterest.
Thought I'd better join though first and learn this thing.

Wish me luck.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

What Happens Around the Campfire, Should Stay Around the Campfire...

Love this picture! This is so typical of my boys to build a fire and sit around it this way while starting sticks on fire.

Love these boys!
All Jared wanted to do tonight was sit around a campfire. He's had such a busy week with work (love receiving blessings!) and just wanted to relax. So when he got home from shoeing tonight, we went out back and built one. Let's just say it was an interesting time tonight with my boys.
They look so sweet, yet were SO hyper!

I don't know why, but they were all on one tonight. It was joke after joke, bodily sounds coming from every which way and end, and laughter galore. I finally gave up on trying to remind them there was a girl present (me) and to use manners. It wasn't working even with Jared tonight. I reminded him how much I have to put up with living with all boys. And I can take a lot. I said out loud how I deal with a lot of stuff with boys and most of the time I can take it. That's when Cody said, "Mom, you're a manly woman." Yep, that's me! And that's actually a good compliment for me. I'm no sissy or city girl that's for sure.

We had hot dogs, baked beans, carrots and sugar snap peas, funyuns, and smor's. It was pretty tasty.
I know these are blurry. I couldn't get them to hold still long enough to take a picture without the flash on. It was just too much for these hyper boys. Although, Cody's stick he's flinging around looks pretty cool.

Hunter had a revelation through this whole thing. He announced, "The Holy Ghost lives inside of us. So he's camping inside me." Somewhere in the middle of this ruckus, he managed to find a spiritual moment.

But that night soon came to a screeching end as the boys decided to pee on the fire. Guess they'd had enough. I told Jared my day was rounded out. I did facials this morning with Mary Kay and then hung out with boys tonight who talked about farts, burps, spitting, and peeing on the fire. Girly stuff to manly stuff. And I have to admit, as much as I like Mary Kay products and facial parties, I have to have my country girl side as well. I got that tonight for sure.

All in a day of raising boys.

And a husband.

40 minutes later, after coming in from around the fire, I go upstairs to find this...
Pardon the mess... we had Kai here today. Boy I tell you... that kid never stops! Wish I had that much energy all the time.

Their high-strung spirits had had enough I guess.

This was just too cute to not take a picture of. I've never seen them all asleep at once like this. They had a big day though. Lots of work with Dad, and then extremely hyper at the end can do it to ya.

Goodnight my boys. Thanks for making this night memorable.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Poor Cody... The Long Wait on Testing

You guessed it, we were back at the doctor's again with Cody yesterday. What else is new. Poor kid.

Cody was having a lot of pain in his legs and feet over the weekend. And I mean a lot! He was miserable through Blakeley's blessing, seeing Glen and his family,going to church Sunday, and even going to Cherie's to hold Blakeley for the first time he was miserable. So I took him in to Dr. Duffy again yesterday morning. We tried giving him Benedryl Sunday and Monday, but it didn't seem to do anything for him (it didn't even knock him out! I'm gone within an hour of taking that. Man this kid is tough! Dr. Duffy even said the same thing about him -  it knocks him cold!)

We told Dr. Duffy it just doesn't seem to be getting better. We tried the Benedryl but nothing was working there, either. And we even stopped his training for football. We didn't want to cause any more damage with trying to train. Dr. Duffy became more serious this time, which scared me. Usually he's pretty light hearted and fun, I mean, look at last time... joke after joke. He said he wanted to take some x-rays of Cody's hips and make sure the ball joint hadn't slipped, causing weird pressure on his feet. I guess sometimes that can happen with kids who are a little bigger. He didn't think that was the cause, but he wanted to make sure. And then he wanted to do blood work to check for something... Rheumatoid Arthritis.

My heart sank.

He went over our family medical history again and asked how closely related the person was to Cody who had it. It was my Grandma Holt... Cody's Great Grandma. So ya, it was still pretty close. He said there was going to be a lot of blood work done today and that he'd call me at the end of the day when the results were in. Dr. Duffy did mention that even if the blood tests were normal, there was still a small chance of Cody developing Rheumatoid Arthritis later on and that's why this weird reactive arthritis to strep is hanging on so long. That it could be dormant in him right now and just not show up. Great. He also ran a strep test to make sure he didn't have it again. That came back normal, which was both good and bad. Good in that I didn't want strep again, and bad in that now it's looking more and more like it could be Rheumatoid Arthritis. He said in the mean time to switch and have Cody take Claritin. It's a stringer medicine and stays in your system for 24 hours so it should work better if it's a reactive arthritis we're dealing with.

So, after the x-rays were done, Cody and I headed downstairs to the lab. Cody was pretty nervous. He's never had to have blood drawn before. I knew he was nervous cause he held my hand. Luckily, we got an excellent phlebotomist who did a quick stick that didn't hurt much at all. I was surprised at how many viles they took, I think it was four or five. She said most results would be done by tonight but some not for 24 hours. So the waiting game began.

I was honest with Cody and explained what they were testing for. I think it's important for kids to know, too. Cody dealt with it pretty well and didn't freak out.

We ran to Walmart where we bought some Claritin for Cody, a movie - Dr. Dolittle 1 & 2, and a lunchable for lunch.

I bought Pioneer Woman's new cookbook for me. I wasn't going to because of how much it was until Cody said if I didn't by that for myself, he was going to buy it for me. So I did. With how much stress I've been under with Cody, I needed something to take my mind off of it.

I stayed off my phone all day, just texting when I needed to get a hold of someone. Carrie kept T.J. and Hunter at her house all day to give Cody and I a break and relax. And then at 4:30, Cody and T.J. went to scouts. It was a nice break, albeit stressful though waiting for that dreaded call. Cody started asking me more and more, "Do you think I have it?" I'd just answer with an, "I don't know Bud, let's just wait and see what they say and we'll go from there."

He was starting to get more nervous.

I knew the minute I went to pick up the boys from scouts, they'd call, and sure enough, they did. Dr Duffy's nurse called and said the results from the x-rays all looked good, and they hadn't gotten back all the blood work just yet, but one of the levels - the inflammation level - was up showing something was going on. So Dr. Duffy wanted to retest some blood work again in the morning. Cody wasn't too happy with that at all.

We had Trevor come over last night to help Jared give Cody a priesthood blessing. The blessing promised Cody that his body would heal and go back to normal again. That through the atonement of Jesus Christ, he would be healed. And it promised that he would get a good night's sleep. Cody hasn't slept through the night in quite a while. Every time he turns over, he wakes up in pain, sometimes not being able to go to sleep again for a while. Cody slept great last night, didn't wake up once. And the blessing helped to calm nerves some for all of us. I love priesthood blessings.

So this morning, after dropping the others off at Carrie's (it's so nice she works from home when stuff like this hits!), Cody and I headed to the Hospital again. Luckily we only had to go to the lab today so we wouldn't be at the Doc's all morning like yesterday. As we checked in at the register's office, Cody made a point to tell me her office smelled like gummy worms. He's such a funny kid! Nothing gets past him.

The blood work went pretty good. This time it hurt more then yesterday's. We got the room again with the cool picture of the barn. I love barns.

Once that was over we went home for yet another waiting game of that dreaded phone call. Cody did seem to be doing a little better then yesterday with the pain in his legs. I prayed so hard that the Claritin would work and he wouldn't be looking at Rheumatoid Arthritis all his life.

Every time the phone rang we both would jump. I realized how much this was affecting Cody. When I'd tell him it wasn't the doctor that called, he's get so ornery. We both just wanted to know if he had it or not.

I was surprised when his office called at 2:00. I thought we'd be waiting all day again. Dr. Duffy's nurse said all the results were in and it was good. It showed no signs of Rheumatoid Arthritis and his inflammation levels a had dropped just a bit!!!!! Oh I was so happy to hear that! I told the nurse to let Dr. Duffy know Cody seemed to be doing a touch better from the Claritin. We were told to continue with the Claritin for a week and see how he is. And to call with updates to let Dr. Duffy know how he's doing.

I jumped off that phone as fast as I could and told Jared the news. Then I went outside to find Cody, who was out with the animals trying to take his mind off of this, and told him the good news, along with a big hug! We were both so relieved!

I'm so glad things turned out this way. I couldn't even imagine facing Rheumatoid Arthritis with a child so young. Especially to know we'd be eventually facing cancer treatments if he'd had this to help control it. I'm so thankful for answers to prayers and priesthood blessings.

And modern day medicine.

And Claritin.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Hunter is such a boy! Tonight we decided to rent a Red Box so T.J. and Hunter ran with me down to Maverick to grab one (yes I know we are old timers, we don't have movie channels, red boxes and such available through t.v. on demand. We don't watch enough movies to justify it.). After grabbing the movie we jumped in the truck and backed out. Hunter immediately shouted,  "I just farted! Lock the doors!" and laughed!

Oh my goodness, I had to laugh at this one.

He's 7. Seven!

I blame this on my brother Jim. He's exactly like this and everyone says Jim and Hunter are twins. I'm starting to believe this more and more.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Blakeley's Birth Day!

This morning at 4:40 a.m. my cell phone rang. Usually you don't want a phone call at that time in the morning, but once I saw it was Jim, I knew what was going on. He said, "Your niece is on her way." He said Cherie's water broke at 3 a.m., they are at the hospital (I already knew. I could hear the heart monitor.), and that she's dilated to a 3. I asked if they needed anything and he said they forgot their camera and the blanket they are going to wrap her in, so Jamie was bringing it to them. I tried to go back to sleep, but after news like that, anxiety and excitement started running through me. I ended up getting up and called Jamie to have her take some card stock up as well so they could get a copy of her footprints. Jamie was at Jim & Cherie's, so she ended up just stopping by my house and I gave her some. After that, I ended up going back to sleep for an hour and a half, the whole time dreaming the baby was born and she was crying a lot. But when I woke up, I realized every time I'd hear Blakeley cry, it was actually the chickens crowing outside. Ya, it was some good sleep, not!

So after getting up again, I called Jim. He said Cherie was still about the same and was getting the Pitocin at the time. I showered, & got me and the boys ready. Jared went to his BYC meeting, and then came home. And we headed to the hospital. We stopped at Jim's to grab his cell phone charger, (where I apparently dropped my phone. I didn't have it with me all day today, and on a day like this!), then grabbed him a Subway Sandwich for lunch cause he was starving, and headed to the hospital. Cherie looked good. She was now dilated between a 5 and 6. We hung out in her room for about 45 minutes. My poor boys couldn't be in the room. They only let kids 12 and older in now, so John and the boys hung out in the waiting room after saying hi to Cherie.

 Even though Cherie is 3 weeks early (they moved her due date back to April 2nd), it's kind of a relief her water broke. Her blood pressure was starting to go up again and she just wasn't feeling very good. I'm glad Blakeley's close enough to her due date that she's OK to come now.

 I was so excited!! Can you tell?!
Jim loved his sandwich even though I forgot cheese, bacon and toasting it. I'm the bestest sister!

The boys did great even though we spent a LOT of time in the waiting room. John made them paper airplanes that kept them entertained for a while. There were the vending machines and the snack room we visited a lot! (which is really only for patients), and T.J. brought his Transformers toys so he kept busy transforming them.
It was cute seeing Jim. He was so excited. Cherie was, too, but her epidural was bugging her a bit.
At 12:15 the doctor came in to check her. He said she was at a 9 so they were going to start pushing. So we went to the waiting room. We weren't planning on staying, but since she was pushing already, why go home, right?! Besides, I left my purse and camera bag in there, so I was stuck.
T.J. didn't mind staying. He was supposed to give a talk in Primary today and was trying everything to get out of it. His prayers were answered.
 The waiting room. For how big that hospital was , their waiting room was tiny. We all got to know each other pretty well; including another girl who was waiting for a friend to have a baby. John thought she was cute. So Jamie got some info on her and found out she was kind of seeing someone. John was so embarrassed. Good entertainment.
 Cherie's brother Jeff and is wife Kate joined us in the waiting game. Jeff is hilarious!

 My Dad came after work. He's being like the kids and hiding cause he didn't want his picture taken.
So he pulls his hat down to hide from the camera.

 T.J. found mini soup cans in the snack room. By this time we'd been waiting for 2 and a half hours. Everyone was getting hungry.
 He opened the can and it splattered everywhere!
After waiting around for 4 hours, Jared left with the boys. He wanted to change out of his suit so bad, and they were all starving. He didn't have his wallet and my purse was in Cherie's room, so we couldn't go down to the cafeteria.

 This was my snack I found in the snack room.

 Finally around 5:15, Jim came out with the good news!!!! He'd text Jamie around 5 and said Blakeley was here, so we all knew. We just had to wait for him to come out now. I called Jared using my Dad's phone and told him. They went to his parents for dinner, and then came back up.
 Jim sat and told us all about it. Even though they kicked us out at 12:15 and said she was starting to push, she didn't actually start until 2. Wish we would have known that. We all were starting to worry that she may end up in a C-Section.
Blakeley was born at 4:40, weighing 6 lbs. 3 oz. and was 18 and a half inches long. Everything went well.
I was going to guess she'd be 6 lbs. 3 oz. Funny.
 Jim & Cherie's friends Tyson & Clarissa were also there.

 Finally we got to go back and see her. Cherie looked really good! And Blakeley is so cute!
 Isn't she sweet! Look at her hair!
 Jim was so excited! I love this picture of him.
 My cute Dad seeing his "Favorite" Grand Daughter. He calls favorites all the time. He was so excited to see her. I love the smirk on his face.
 Dad got to hold her first, then Mom.
 And then me!! She is so tiny! Isn't that the cutest look on her face?! I can see both Cherie and Jim in her. She has Cherie's cheeks for sure. And part of her reminded me so much of my boys when they were first born. It will be fun to see how much they might look alike.
 There is nothing like holding a newborn baby. I love their smell. And cuddling them. I can't wait to watch her when Cherie goes back to work. Oh ya... Jim & Cherie asked me to tend her!!! She's thinking of working 2 full days a week. I'm so excited. I love her so much already!

Jeff came later with balloons.

Jared and the boys seeing Blakeley for the first time. The nurse was so nice to stop and let them see her before going into the nursery. They are so excited to have a baby cousin again. They can't wait to play with her.
 Jeff seeing Blakeley.

 Watching Blakeley get her shots and be cared for by the nurse. They opened the blinds so the boys could see.

 Isn't he cute?!

 The boys got to go see Cherie, too. She was looking even better after eating. For getting up at 3, she looked really good!

 Blakeley's cute footprints on my card stock.  :)  I did this with all my boys so I could have a set, too.

 Jim checking on Blakeley in the nursery.
 So cute!
 Getting ready for her first bath.

 Jim got to help bath her. He was so cute to watch with her. He kept looking at Blakeley, smile, and talk in a cute, soft, high pitch voice. He's going to be so cute with her! He already is great with my boys. And now he has his own.
Once her bath was over, we left. By now it was just after 8. Cherie's parents, Willie and Renee, were about an hour away. They left California this morning and drove straight through. We didn't get to see them but we will soon. Every one was pretty beat. It was time to go.

Once we got home, Hunter found his own baby. He wrapped a bag of macaroni noodles in a dish towel and carried it around saying, "Blakeley's born." He loves to copy anything that happens.

I'm so excited to be an Aunt again.
I love my cute niece Blakeley. I'm so glad everything went well today. It was a good day!