Saturday, April 25, 2015

Monster Trucks

Griffey has loved monster trucks ever since her was little.  We brought him to a monster truck show in Eugene when he was two and have always wanted to bring him back.  We surprised him with this trip to the monster truck show at Chase Field in Phoenix in January.  He was so excited!
 I know he really appreciates the special time with just us and no other siblings.
We all agreed the best moment was when Grave Digger drove up to a wall and drove up it and did a back flip.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Yay! We are coming home to Oregon!

We are coming home! I had an interview last week for a job in Dorena, Oregon and they called me back a couple hours later to offer me the job! I am so excited!!

I will be teaching a K/1 combo class in a small country school outside of Cottage Grove, Oregon.

We are so excited to finally know that it is the right time to come home.  I was feeling really lost on whether to stay here or come home because we had jobs here and nothing really lined up there.  Well,  after I didn't sign my contract here in Arizona, I was told that I still had the option to reapply to the district and they could find me a place in another school because my position was already filled. So, I did end up reapplying and interviewing with another school and I got the job, but hadn't signed a contract yet.  It was nice to have a back-up plan, but it didn't feel right. I felt pretty depressed and lost staying here and having to go to a new school and not knowing where Griffey would go to school and not wanting to stay in Arizona.

Adam was still feeling unsure about leaving, but we agreed I would still look in Oregon and I got an amazing job!!

And now...we just found out that Adam's school is most likely being closed down due to budget cuts next year, so he wouldn't have had a position for next year anyway, so it all worked out perfect and we got out of here at the right time!

We don't know when we are going to leave Arizona yet.  I have some trainings in June in Oregon that they would like me to be at, but Adam wants to teach summer school here, so we are just going to weigh out the different options and see when the best time is to move.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


Natalia has been walking for about a month now and Noah is still not walking.  It has been a little concerning that he hasn't started walking yet, but I keep hearing that I don't really have to be worried until he is around 18 months. They are 16.5 months right now so I'm not going to worry yet.

He has always been a little behind Natalia with developmental stages (crawling, talking, smiling, etc.) but it is only because he was sick so much last spring. He spent so many days in the hospital and at home recovering from his RSV and Bronchiolitis that is makes sense that he has been a little slower than Natalia.

Usually when I hold Noah's hands and try to get him to walk with me, he will take a few steps and then try to drop down on his knees.  It seems like he just has no interest in it.

Tonight, he was acting way more determined to walk than usual.  He kept crawling over to Griffey's Frisbee on the ground and putting one foot on it and standing up with the other foot on the ground. He thought it was hilarious that he had one foot on the Frisbee and kept laughing so hard and looking around to see who noticed him. 

Once he noticed we were all cheering for him so much for standing, he crawled over to his push walker and stood up behind it and started trying to walk while pushing it. He kept falling over and losing his balance, crying, and then getting back up to try it again. He did this for probably about 10 minutes.  Usually he would have given it up by then, but he was so proud of how much we were cheering for him. When I said it was time to go to bed, he started crying because he wanted to keep practicing, when he usually is fine going to bed.

Seeing his determination was sweet because I have been seeing a lot more of their personalities develop lately and I know he will get the walking thing down pretty soon.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Testimony Meeting and Listening for Answers

Today was Fast Sunday and we had our testimony meeting at church.  About half way through the meeting, Griffey turned to me and told me I should go up there.  I told him, "Ask Daddy," because I hadn't felt like I was burning to say anything at the moment and had Natalia on my lap and Noah on the floor next to me.  When Griffey turned and asked Adam, Adam also kind of brushed off the idea, but said he would go up and help Griffey.  I told Griffey I would go up there if he did and he thought about it for a second and got really nervous. He told me he would be too scared. 

Griffey sat and thought for a minute and then told me he would if I helped him know what to say. Then he stood up and said, "Let's go!" Scary! I don't go up there very often either, so he was really testing my comfort zone too!

Griffey bore his testimony in front of the congregation for the first time! He said, "I have a testimony of Jesus Christ.  I know he loves me.  I have a testimony of prayer.  I know that every day when I pray, I feel comforted.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen." His testimony was so sweet and simple and perfect.  I am so proud of him!

After Griffey, I bore my testimony of prayer and receiving revelation.  I have had to rely a lot on the power of prayer as we decide whether this is the right time to go back to Oregon or not.  Obviously we really want to go back after this school year, but we are waiting to see what  Heavenly Father has in store for us.

Adam and I have been praying, fasting, and going to the temple in hopes of having out path laid out more clearly.  So far, I have felt that our purpose in coming to Arizona was to become a stronger family unit and strengthen our bonds.  We didn't know it when we came, but I feel that way now.

Now I feel like Heavenly Father is telling us we can go back if we feel like our marriage and our family unit is strong enough.  Here, we do everything together. We carpool every day.  We do everything together every night and on the weekends and in Oregon, we have a lot of family and friends and a lot of distractions from our little family. When we are upset we pull apart to deal with it, whereas here, we are stuck together to figure it out.  We have been able to resolve conflicts so much quicker and easier here.

I feel like Heavenly Father wants to make sure we understand how everything will change when we go back.  So I evaluated all of that and I feel like we are stronger than ever and can go back. 

Then, next I felt like we needed to evaluate our finances.  I kept praying and kept feeling like I needed to create a budget so we could see what it would look like to move to Oregon with three kids and no jobs and how long our savings would last and take time to really think about the financial impact of moving.  I felt stressed by what our budget looked like, but I also know that we will have our tax refund and we will be able to get by for a few months until we get a job or else we will find some other kind of income besides teaching while also looking for teaching jobs.

I feel like the main answer I am getting so far is that Heavenly Father is trying to teach us to think through every aspect of this big decision and then make the best choice.  I think we will be fine either way, but I want our children to thrive so I keep praying for more specific answers.

Right now, I don't know what we are going to do, but I just keep praying and I just keep reminding myself to keep my personal desires out of it so the Spirit can lead us in the right direction.

A small part of me wants to stay.  Right now, Griffey goes to kindergarten at my school, right across from my classroom. I cherish this so much.  After we drop Adam off at his school and the babies off at Anita's, Griffey and I have a few minutes alone in the car to talk about our goals and hopes for the day. When we get to school, Griffey hangs out in my classroom for an hour before school starts.  He plays on the computer, helps me get things ready, and sometimes joins my before school reading group.  He knows the kids in my class because they come in and see him before school.  I know what he is doing in his class and he knows what I am doing in mine.  At the end of the day, he will come in while I pack up and do the math or art activity that I haven't cleaned up from the day. He will ask me if my kids were good and what we learned about.

We talk about our day and share all the little joys and experiences that I wouldn't have even known about him if we weren't at the same school and so close.  I also see him throughout the day when I am walking my class to specials and his class is just getting back.  He used to yell, "Mom!" across the courtyards (all the classrooms open up to the courtyards unlike in Oregon where it is all one building), but I taught him to just quietly wave.  I love spotting him across the courtyard waving.

If we go back to Oregon, I will miss out on all of these things.  Most likely, we will not be at the same school and I will be trying to make time to pry information out of him about his day while also juggling setting up a new classroom and getting to know a new school's policies and procedures and probably a new grade level and curriculum and everything else.  If we stay, I will not lose my precious time with my little boy.

On the other hand, I know that Griffey will not stay at the school I teach at forever. It has always been the plan to go to a different school after first grade..  Anyway, I know that the precious time I have with Griffey would end soon either way and I can't blame it on Oregon.  Obviously, there are a million things going through my head and I am trying to find the right balance between overanalyzing and listening too close and  not listening close enough to here the direction of the Spirit.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Gender roles

I have always been very vocal with Griffey and Adam and my students that I do not like gender stereotyping.  I hate that our society has denoted certain colors are boy colors and certain colors as girl colors.  It is annoying when I look in the toy section and see pink rows and blue/gray rows. 

I have always made sure Griffey feels comfortable choosing from all the toys and not just the "boy" toys and same with clothes, activities, tv shows, ect.  Griffey has loved Dora and Thomas and loved his Dora shirts as much as his monster truck shirts.

However, Noah and Natalia are sooo much different than how Griffey was! It is very interesting to see.  Since I ultimately want my kids to choose their interests for themselves, I don't want to push them into gender roles, but I also don't want to push them so far in the opposite direction that they don't feel comfortable liking gender stereotypical things around me.

Last month, we took the kids to Toys R' Us to get a feel for what Noah and Natalia might like for Christmas.  I handed both of them a baby doll.  Natalia instantly embraced it and started singing, hugging, rocking, and patting it's back. Noah, on the other hand, started biting it's face and then grunted as he threw it to the ground.

We ended up getting Talia the doll because it was so cute seeing how attached she was, but I also feel like I need to tell everyone, "We tried to give them both one.  Noah didn't want it." Just to make sure they know I am not pushing them into gender roles.

I don't have a lot of experience with this because Griffey always liked everything. Noah is very brash and destructive.  He grunts and hits and throws toys.  He loves playing catch and throwing balls.

Natalia, on the other hand, loves headbands and bows and smiles when she puts one on.  She sings all the time and will hug and rock any stuffed animal or baby doll she finds.

I think it is just important I always make sure they know that they have any option of clothes, toys, activities, etc. and that it is also okay if they do choose gender stereotypical things.

Christmas 2014

Right now, we are enjoying our 2-week Winter Break in Arizona.  We stayed in Phoenix this year because we are trying to save up money to come home, to Oregon, permanently as soon as we can.  We feel like we have put in the time here that we had planned on and will start the process of looking into when to come home.

We don't have an exact timeline yet.  Every time I pray to know when to move home, I get the answer that we need to go to the temple, so that is what we are going to do this week.

It will definitely be a big, scary move because our school ends in May here and schools in Oregon don't typically hire until the late summer, like August. We will be leaving secure jobs where we have already proven ourselves and become comfortable for the hope of finding a job in Oregon. Scary!

Anyway, even though we weren't around family for Christmas, we still had a nice time.  We bought a tree from Costco because it was from Oregon.  We had soooo many presents from all our family.  It was incredible! I had to write down who bought what so I wouldn't forget because we were so spoiled!

On Christmas Eve, we went to another family in our ward's apartment.  Jared and Ashley live right next to us in our apartment complex and have two young kids. They were also far from their family in Idaho, so we had a delicious Christmas Eve dinner complete with a ham and my grandma's frozen mud pie. I made the ham and I am so proud of myself because it was my first time!Then we played Christmas Bingo and then Natalia and Noah both had meltdowns because they are both teething.

On Christmas, we just hung out at home and watched Christmas movies and played with our new toys.  Griffey got a bike from Santa and legos, clothes, socks, a mirror, and tons of other stuff.  I was impressed that Griffey was so willing to get rid of a lot of his old toys to give to other kids. He is such a sweet boy.

Griffey helped me deliver presents to two of my students who were definitely in need and he even donated 5 stuffed animals to them.

We have been enjoying our winter break by laying around and relaxing and also by deep cleaning and purging all the unnecessary stuff we have.  It is so nice to have all this time!

We went up to Camp Verde the day after Christmas to stay at my friend, Rum's other house.  It was cute and all decorated for Christmas.  We planned to go to relax and get away from the big city.  We made frozen pizza and rented some redboxes and were ready to hang out, but then both babies started freaking out.  Noah spilt pizza sauce on the clean carpet and they were both trying to tear down all the breakable decorations, like candles.  Then Griffey was acting up because I promised to do Legos with him but then I had to make dinner and feed the babies and figure out how to work the dvd players and baby proof the house and feed myself and a million other things.  Griffey became vey whiny and wasn't listening and the babies started crying because they were teething so I just started packing up.  I couldn't take it.  I didn't want to do this all night. Oh, and the heater kept short circuiting so it was freezing there and we forgot the pack-n-plays, so the babies were going to sleep on the floor.

So, I packed everything up and told them all we were leaving. We left at 7 at night and it was supposed to take 1:15 minutes to get home.

There were two accidents on the 2-lane freeway, so it ended up taking over 3 miserable hours to get home.

I was annoyed, but then I realized that we still had well over a week of vacation, so I got over it pretty quick.

Now our Christmas tree is down and the house is looking pretty polished which feels nice.  I have about 3 things to get done in the next 7 days, which is awesome! I love Winter break and wearing work out clothes all day and sleeping in! It makes up for the insane hard work we do throughout the school year.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What was my password?

So, when you forget your password and become pregnant with twins, it is not unreasonable that your blog will be neglected.

It has been a long time and I got pretty tired of writing on this blog, but I just went back and was reading some of my old, old posts and I realized how neat it was to have those memories written down.  I liked being reminded of things we did as a family as well as how I used to think about things, so I am going to start writing on here again (when I remember.)

I am doing it for myself and my family so we have these memories.

That's all I want to write for now.  I don't think I am going to go back and fill in the gaps.  That would be a lot of work, so I will just move forward.

Oh yeah, there are five people in my family now, not three. That's all the update I have for now.