Monday, September 30, 2013


Started preschool with the boys today.  It is pretty simple, but we didn't have any bored moments today (hooray!).  We don't have a tight schedule, but snacks are around 10 and 2 (it keeps them from moaning for food all day long) and lunch is at noonish.  They can play outside whenever they want and all their hunts for acorns and yes, dinosaur bones keep them out there for long stretches of time.  They love it and so do I.

Then for about 20 min we have a lesson (following It works great (you know, the one day we have tried it).  :)  It is good for the different levels all my boys are in and it doesn't take long if they don't want it to.

And it makes me feel like I am actually accomplishing things with the kids not just fighting against them. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

My Four Boys

 It really is insane how quickly my little people grow.  Andrew is now 7 1/2 weeks old.  He kind of smiles now, but most of his smiles are for Daddy.  He is sleeping much better and WAY happier.  I cut out milk and pretty much all chocolate from my diet and we try to keep to a pretty consistent schedule and that has helped him a lot.  He has a cold right now, which totally stinks, but he is handling it pretty well, minus the puking a lot, but at least he breaths okay.  He is so precious and since he is happier, Tys and him hang out more, which is really cute.  The older boys all still love him and get super cute when they try to help him.  Love it.  He wants to be held all the time which I really don't mind, I just don't get to very often.  Little moments where I can, I just soak it up.

 Sadly, since Josh has been at school, I never take pictures of him.  I will have to change that.  But I did take a picture of one of his school papers.  "I like the Bune in my picture."  Yes, it is a bunny and he spelled it how it sounds.  Completely adorable.  He is usually pretty happy when he hops off the bus (he loves his bus driver, Tracy, she seriously is amazing).  We eat a snack and he tells us about his day and shows us his work, it is so much fun.  There are meltdown moments, but not nearly as many as I thought we would have.  I love hearing about all his buddies and the snacks he has and what he did.  It is bizarre to think most of his time awake, he isn't home with me.  Tys and I still have mixed emotions about it, but I know he is way happier at school then he would be here at this time in his life and he is learning much better too.  He is so much better learning with others.  I do love it once he gets home.  It doesn't seem right until the whole family is together.

 Then there is my crazy Caleb.  He has really stepped up since Josh went to school.  He helps me SOO much and rarely has whiny days (but when he does, he makes up for lost time, lol).  He loves baby Andrew and is so quick to help him be happy.  He loves to laugh and be silly.  This is him being a walrus (apple pieces) in case you were wondering.  Seriously, the kid is so much like how I remember being as a kid, so silly.  He loves to run around outside chasing squirrels with his buddy, Logan.  The other day they were raptors pretending to go to school.  Hilarious.  They had backpacks and created an imaginary bus and everything.  I love this age.  And I love this little guy.

And my ham.  Oh Matthew.  He still loves to push EVERYONE'S buttons.  He is so full of life and energy.  The kid never stops moving, even in his sleep.  He has such a different build than his brothers too.  He is stocky and tough looking, like a mini football player.  Tys and I were talking about this today and then a few hours later, I found him outside throwing a football around.  So it really wouldn't surprise me if loves sports.  His vocabulary is growing...slowly, but it is growing.  He mostly still just says "uh huh" all day long, but there are other words too like "gur-gurl" for squirrel and...okay, mostly the same words like "Josh" and "ruff ruff" for shoes and "ka-ker" for basically any type of food or drink, and when he wants something he goes "MaMA! Mon!" and drags me wherever he wants to go and points.  He does have conversations with us, we just have no clue what he is saying.  I'm sure he will get there.  But why speak when you can get whatever you want without using the energy?  Haha, that is totally my fault.

But yeah, I love my little munchkins.  We have our moments where I want to tear my hair out but the little moments where they kiss me with their snotty grubby faces, well, it totally makes up for it.  :)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Baby Squirrel

I was reminded of how fragile and precious mortality is this weekend.  Luckily nothing terrible happened to my little family, but there are always moments where I think, "wow, that was close, how are we all still alive?"  (Of course there are thousands of moments like that every day, I have four boys).  We had lots of moments like that this weekend, but there was one that keeps sticking with me.

Josh and I went on a little Mama-son date night Friday night.  We went to see "Oklahoma," a play my brother is in.  When we went to get in the car, we saw a little squirrel on the ground not running away.  It was just a little baby and so precious.  It wasn't moving much, so I figured it fell out of the tree or something, but I hoped his mom would come and rescue him or something.

Turns out he wasn't rescued and the next morning he was still there, still alive, but barely.  I felt horrible.  Tys and I wished there was something we could do.  The boys told us we should take it to the hospital or vet.  I wanted to, but what on earth would we do, "Hi, we would like to pay whatever it takes to heal this little guy."  Yeah, not happening since we don't have that kind of cash.

I tried to explain that to the boys and that Daddy and I didn't know how to heal a little squirrel.  So they both (Josh and Caleb) vowed they would both become veterinarians so that if animals ever were sick, they could heal them.  I think that is a great idea.

Tys was awesome and took care of the little creature as best he knew how so that it wouldn't suffer any longer than necessary.  But we both felt miserable.  The baby was seriously adorable and we didn't know how to make it better.

Then of course there are moments like this that make it sound even worse:
(the boys were talking to Grandma Cooper via Skype)
Josh: Oh Grandma, there was a baby in our yard that was sooo cute, but it was sick!
Caleb: Yeah, and it was dying and so Daddy killed it and now it is in heaven.
me (from across the room): It was a baby squirrel, not a baby human!!

Horrible, but hilarious.

But this was beyond precious:
Caleb praying:
"Dear Heavenly Father, please bless the little baby squirrel.  He is dead and in heaven.  Bless him to be resurrected."

I don't think there is anything more precious than the heart felt prayer of a little one.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Some Change is Bitter Sweet

This blog is mostly all about my boys: Tyson and the four little munchkins we made, and then my babysittees (since basically everyone I babysit are boys too).  But, for the past three and a half years I have had a huge section of my life that has been just girls.

For anyone who doesn't understand the inner workings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, almost always each member of the church is giving a calling, or an assignment.  This gives not only a feeling of purpose, but also helps each of us work in unity to take care of each other and help each of us to draw closer to our Savior.  My calling for the past several years has been working with the young women (girls ages 12-18) in our ward (or congregation).

I have LOVED it.  The girls are hilarious and so kind.  I have found so much solace whenever I am with them.  I have taught them, and they have taught me, and with several of the girls I have become their friend.  It is such a wonderful feeling to belong with them, to know I was loved.  And I love them.  And as my whole life is surrounded with boys, I cannot even begin to express how much of a blessing it was to actually be with girls, to cry and feel normal.  And the other leaders I have worked with are incredible.  They are like superwomen and have taught me so much.  They have become some of my closest friends.

Well, this last Sunday, I was released from my calling.  It is normal, we all have different assignments and the Lord knew someone else was needed to work with the young women and I (hopefully) learned and taught everything I needed to.  I know if my heart that this is how it needs to be and I feel (as cliché as this sounds) at peace with it.  There really is no other way to describe it, because I am not really happy about it.

It will just be so weird to be at church and go to the normal classes (like with the women that are my own age) and not be with my girls.  But I am so excited to watch them from the sidelines now, to see them grow up and I know it will be okay because I will still be here and get to hear all their stories and excitement for life.  My heart just hurts a little.

It is probably ridiculous to be in this state of mourning, but since change always makes me a little sad and writing is how I process, you get to read this soppy story.  :)

Good news is, change also makes me excited.  It means surprises are in the future.  I don't know what the Lord has in store for me next.  It could be anything.  I could be asked to be a leader or arrange chairs or coordinate parties, or work with cub scouts (I would have even more boys to write about lol), or have no calling at all.  That is okay, because I still have a purpose, to do all I can to lead people to Christ.  I'm excited about that.

Tree House Update

Per Request, here is the latest on the tree house:

Several months ago, Tyson sat down with the three boys and discussed what they wanted in a tree house should they get one.  See here for that post about their planning/scheming.  It was adorable their long list of things.

Tyson has wanted to build a tree house for the boys for a long time now.  After he talked to the boys, he went outside, found the right trees and then made a plan.  Tyson is a detailed person, so a lot of thinking and mapping went into it.

When his mom and dad came after we had baby Andrew, then they used some of this time to start on the project.  We used two big posts from the fallen carport to use as the main supports (that and the tree), and then built the main base. 

Tyson cut off some small limbs in the way and then painted the base.

Tyson is so attractive, especially when he is working. :)

That is how far we have gotten since it is expensive and pretty time consuming.  And I am not much help with the little man cub with me basically all day long. 

So the next step is to add a railing and then build the house part of it.  I'm sure it will take awhile to complete, especially if we had any of the things the boys really want like stairs and carpet and oh yeah, a pool that they can swing off the tree and jump into.  Just small stuff like that.

For sure though, the ladder will be the last thing added.  That way they can't get in it without us until it is ready.

But we are all really excited about the new addition to our property.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Just so Thankful for my Love

I am a die hard romantic.  I love romantic comedies, I love cute (not sleazy) romantic novels, I love any love story.  Seriously, I have spent countless nights staying up late reading them, giggling like a little girl and crying with the characters. 

It is ridiculous.

But not.

Love is the most beautiful thing.  All emotions are strong and powerful and Satan tries to mimic the emotion of love with lust, but it is nothing like it.

It may seem weird but love almost feels like an energy.

I have been so blessed with my relationship with Tyson.  He is my very best friend.  The whole world can feel horrible and sad and stressful, and then Tyson walks in the door and everything is set right.  It is like all the bad stuff just dissolves when he is near.

We have are disagreements and he does often drive me nuts, but that just makes me love him more.  And it is true that we fell in love really fast and we are pretty perfect for each other, but we also have to work at staying in love.  Falling in love is easy, staying that way when everything around you is changing, and you are changing, isn't easy.  But it is fun when you make it that way and the results are wonderful.

The other night, I woke up with little Andrew, fed him, burped him, changed him, swaddled him and rocked him, put him back in bed and then with sheer exhaustion literally crawled into bed.  I was just going to lay on my pillow and slip into slumber, but I rolled over a little and touched my forehead to Tyson's.  He was completely asleep and didn't respond in any way, but I felt an energy from him.  It may sound weird, but even unconscious, I could feel his love for me.  It somehow helped me be not so weary, to feel happy even when I felt so worn out and frustrated.

I don't know what all the rest of our lives hold or how difficult they will be, but I'm excited to be more and more in love with my Tyson. 

It is like loving my kids, it always amazes me how I can love them all and love them so intensely.  I don't know how it is possible to love Tyson more than the day before, but it is, and I love it.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Where Does Jesus Live?

Caleb: "Jesus is in Heaven."
Logan: "No He isn't."
Caleb: "YES He is!"
Logan: "Nope."
Caleb: "Mom, Logan thinks Jesus isn't in Heaven!"
Logan: "He isn't in Heaven, He is in church with me."

Love little kids and their very simple, yet deep conversations.

(And Em, never fear, there is a tree house post coming as soon as I have five minutes without kids fighting or Andrew being hungry.  Lol)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sing Louder

Okay, so anyone who knows me knows I break out into song at random moments.  My kids are super used to this and will either ignore it completely or look at me and smile.  They probably think I am crazy.

Well, Logan, my babysittee, really hates my singing.  Every time I start he plugs his ears and tells me to stop.  At first it really hurt my feelings.  What?  He doesn't like my voice?  But I got used to it.

Now I have a new tactic: Torture.  If he doesn't like it, I will make him listen.

I unplug one ear and sing louder.  :)

Okay, I have only done this to him once, but it was very funny.

He smiled.

Then he stopped smiling as I started laughing and said,

"Cami, don't do that.  That's mean."

Haha.  I love being able to torture these boys.

They torture me, I think it is only fair.  :)

Monday, September 9, 2013

How They Grow...

It is probably because my little Matthew turned 2 yesterday, but I keep thinking my little kids are growing up so fast.  Matthew is so big and he is finally starting to say more than "Momma, Dadda, Bebe" and of course, "crackers."  He has such an attitude sometimes, but he is so adorable he gets away with it almost 100% of the time.  It really isn't good.

We had his party yesterday and thanks to both my mom and Tyson's mom, we had these adorable cupcakes.  During the party, Josh was building a tower and Matthew ran up and knocked it over.  Josh got mad and screamed at Matthew, then started bawling.  Really nothing new, but he told me his tooth hurt.

me: "Well, were you clenching your teeth when you got mad at Matthew?"
Josh: "yeah..."
me: "Well, that hurts your teeth, so learn to not freak out so bad."
Josh: "But now my tooth is loose!" (giant wail)
me: "oh my word..."

After rolling my eyes, I check his tooth expecting him to be totally exaggerating and yup it was loose.  I had to turn around and do breathing excercises to keep from crying.  I know, totally ridiculous.  But my kid is going to loose his first tooth!!  I was just getting used to him being in Kindergarten.  How dare he decide to grow up even more?  :)

He hasn't lost the tooth yet, but I'm sure Tys or I will take the pliers to it soon since any time he takes a bite of food he starts complaining that it hurts and I just don't think we can take it much longer.  I mean cereal, how can that possibly hurt when it is your front tooth?  But, I don't really remember being 5 and how a loose tooth feels, so I will withhold judging the kid too much.

As for my other children, they are growing too.  Caleb is learning to tell time, it is adorable.

me: "Caleb, what time is it?"
Caleb: "Um, the little hand is at the 10 and the big hand is between the 4 and the 5."
me: "perfect, thanks Caleb."

Yeah, I'm not great with explaining what that means, I just need to know the time when I am stuck on the couch feeding the baby.  It kind of slips my mind to help my kids understand beyond the obvious.  :)

And get this: baby Andrew only woke up once last night and only twice the night before that.  Huzza, huzza.  Plus, today he hasn't been too cranky during the day.  I am feeling pretty much human, it is great.  And we went to the park today with no melt downs.  It is a good day.

Caleb is SO sweet with Andrew.  He can always get him to stop crying.
Thank you so much to everyone for being so nice and sympathetic with the many rough days so far.  I don't know for everyone else, but I heard lots of people say that once you get past 3 kids, it isn't a big deal.  Well, that isn't true for me.  I think 4 is way harder, just in different ways.  But it is still in the first 90 days, so things may change later.  :)  (Tyson says Andrew has a 90 day probation period)

It has been so nice now that Andrew doesn't cry as much.  I notice that he really has a cute face that I am just in love with.  I can't stop kissing and snuggling him.  I guess I am a pretty lucky woman. 

Tys and his dad working on the treehouse

I made a cake for Carmel's 16th birthday.  Just so you know I had to work REALLY hard to get it to tilt like that so she would look like a volleyball Barbie, okay?  Don't judge my skills.  :)

Love how mad Andrew is and Matthew is just focused on the camera.

Our teddy bear party today at the park.

I don't have any pictures of Josh and his loose tooth, but never fear, I will get that documented.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

House of Tempers and Tantrums

Welcome to my home.  The likelihood of you witnessing either a fight, meltdown or temper tantrum while you are here is probably 100%.  So you should probably stay away.  Most of the first 2 hours of my day, I kind of wished I could.

But Matthew finally fell asleep after waking up before 5am (that is when we first heard him).  And Andrew slept for at least an hour without waking up shrieking (that just ended though).  So I must end this post. 

However, we are finally getting into a sort of routine.  Today is Logan's first day back in our home, so now, without any more holidays and such for awhile, we can start getting things back to normal and hopefully I will start posting once a day. Anyone that has any good ideas for homeschooling preschool tips or ideas or programs that work well, please let me know.  I really want to do fun things with the boys that help them learn.

It is good to have a routine.  :)  I just hope that cuts back on the crankiness.