Monday, October 29, 2007

Just a short note...

For those of you who have asked, the laundry from the camping trip is still not done. I had 2 or 3 loads left in the garage when the boys decided to have a fire in the pagoda in the backyard. So more stinky clothes to go into the pile. I do not think it will ever be done...

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I Got A New Car!!! Oh and Lewis got a new car too.

I got a new car! I got a new car! Can you tell that I am excited about my new car? So here is the deal...

We went a little crazy and decided to trade in both of our cars. I had a KIA Sadona and Lewis had a Toyota Corolla. Both were bare base models. The van was 5 years old and about to be paid off, but had 58,000 miles. The Toyota was 18 months old and had approximately 27,000 miles.

I have been driving the van for the past 5 years. A mini van. YUCK!!!! Anyone that knows me at all knows that I have never wanted a van...EVER. Even with 4 kids I hated driving a van. So the heavens shined down on me and I got my new car last Monday. It is a 2008 Ford Taurus X. It is a crossover. That means it is half way between an SUV and a station wagon. One of my friends described it as "A Subaru on steroids". I am in love with it. It is the first car that I have ever been really excited about. The kids love it. The 3rd row seats are raised so Jason can see over the seat in front of him, and he just loves that. The girls can get themselves in and out of it, I love that. It has all of these cool features. I think my favorite one is that by a push of a button the petals move up to meet my feet. (I am no longer sitting so close to the steering wheel that if we had an accident the airbag would crush me to death. That a bonus for everyone.) I know it can't be all perfect, and I will find things to complain about later, but for now the DVD playing, 7 passenger seating, dual zone climate controlling, SUV power having, car type gas mileage getting, made with short people in mind car, will do just fine.

Lew got a new car too. It is a 2007 Honda Civic S.I. Basically a sports car. Now, he needed a new car. We needed to get out of the Toyota with the HUGE percentage rate. He loves the new car. He told me today that he has never had a compliment on a car that he owned before. Probably because he has always had a sensible Toyota Corolla or a van to drive in. Today he got 2 compliments at one stop. He was beaming. I understand. Before he got the Corolla he just traded in he was driving a Corolla. And before that one, yep, another Corolla. Man we just liked the Corollas. Or maybe that what we could afford. Before the 3 Corollas we had (YIKES!!!) he drove a 2 door blue Geo Metro. (We each had one. When we met we both drove matching blue Geo Metros. We did not know it of course, but it is the cars that our fathers gave us when we got out of high school. The only difference was mine was a 1994 model and his was a (approximately) 1984 model.) His car is fast and manual, but he loves it.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


So we went camping this past week with my parents, Alain and Donna. We left on Thursday and came home on Sunday. It was the first camping trip for any of our kids. We thought it was going to be a nightmare, but it ended up pretty good. Here is the weekend in a nutshell....

Thursday: I packed the bags for 6 people, ran my errands, went to the store, and washed all of the laundry needed to go. Oh, all before 11am with all 4 kids with me. Lewis was working for the morning, so I had to handle it all alone. Lewis was supposed to be home at 11:30 and help me get the car packed, but he did not get home until almost 1pm, which was the time my parents were supposed to get to our house to leave. My parents showed up at 1:30, and their truck was so full that we had to unpack some of it to make room for the stuff that did not fit in our van. Who knew that camping with 4 kids and 4 adults ment bringing a year's supply of everthing? So we get on the way at a quarter to 2. We made it down to Virgin ( just outside of Zion's National Park) in 4 hours. We set up camp and made dinner. Hot dogs, chili, and chips. Followed by Smores. Got the kids to bed by 9pm and then the fun began, for me anyways. For any of you that know me, you know that I stay up really late. I watch TV until about 1 or 2 am every night. So at 10pm in the dark with the fire out and nothing to do, I was lost. The girls were asleep in my tent, and I forgot to bring a book. I litterally had nothing to do. Everyone went to bed, and I stayed up swirling the flashlight at the tent ceiling for hours.

Friday: We got up, made bacon and eggs, and then got dressed for the day. Lewis woke up sick. He was all stuffed up and miserable. He was alergic to the outside or he had a cold. I think it was both. It was supposed to be cool so we decided to go to St. George for the day. We stoped at a cowboy town for the kids to play. They fed the animals at the petting area and we got some cute pictures. We then drove down to Mesquite and had a buffet lunch at one of the casinos. And then went shopping at the outlets in St. George for the afternoon. Children's Place had all of their girls clearance on sale for $2.99 or less. EVERYTHING! So I got the girls some skirts and long sleeved shirts. We then drove back to camp and wanted to go swimming, but it was too cold. We had grilled sandwiches for dinner. Adam was the "offical" fire guy. He started our fires and kept them going. I was nervous at first but then he got pretty good at it. (The only problem that I had with the fire was the smoke always followed me anywhere I went. I know people say that the smoke is following them, but in my case it is true. By the end of the weekend it was a joke around camp not to sit next to me because the smoke would blow in your face.) We put the kids to bed early and Lewis, Alain, Donna, and I played Rummy. I won by a landslide.

Saturday: We got up had breakfast and drove into Zion's. We did 2 hikes, which the kids enjoyed. Everyone liked the Weeping Rock hike. It is a short half a mile hike that goes strait up. Water from 1200 years ago runs through the rock and makes the rock cry. It was really interesting. Everyone walked the whole way except for Abigail. She was carried by Lewis and Alain. Then we drove through Zion's and went to a Buffalo Farm and had a really late lunch. Most of us had buffalo burgers, but Adam had chicken strips. After lunch we drove back to the camp area and the kids played at a park down the way. We cooked chicken for a late dinner, and then put the kids to bed at 9. We played Rummy again but stopped half way through because of the wind, and cold. It was really cold the last night.

Sunday: We got up and Adam started the last fire for breakfast. I made pancakes, and eggs. When it was time to put out the fire we had Adam and Jason put their "fire pushing sticks" into the fire. (The sticks were about 3 feet long, and 2 or 3 inches in diamater. They had played with and used these 2 sticks to help in the fire all weekend. They sharpened the ends into spear heads.) As soon as they put them into the fire, Jason then realised that he was not going to get it back. It was burning with fire. Jason had a meltdown. He was sitting in his seat bawling. Tears were running down his face onto the ground. He did not realise he wasn't going to be able to take it home. He was miserable and angry. He chose to ride home with my parents because he was mad at me and Lewis. On the way home we stopped for lunch, Jason forgave us and made it home by 4pm. We unloaded the car and I realized that I had a garage full of dirty clothes, blankets, shoes, and coats that just stunk like smoke. I had to leave everything out there while I washed loads.

The pile is still there, it is smaller but there are still maybe 12 more loads to go. Everyone was very well behaved. We have decided that they are old enough to camp. Maybe we will go again in the spring. I might have my laundry done by then.

I Have Been Tagged

I was tagged from The Queen's Buzz so I need to answer these questions....

What I was doing 10 years ago... Living in Virginia, at SVC. Pregnant with Adam, and throwing up 20 times a day.

What I was doing 5 years ago... Living in Lehi, Utah. Haley had been born 2 weeks before. I was spending my days tired and driving Adam to and from preschool.

What I was doing 1 year ago... Living in the house I am in now. Working full time at Channing Hall. I was very sick, and stayed sick for several months.

What I was doing yesterday... Working at Channing. I was doing paperwork for the state. Very busy doing all of the dirty laundry from our camping trip this past week.

5 places I'd rather be... shoppping, at the spa, anywhere with hot weather on vacation, sleeping, or Vegas

5 snacks/treats I love... Strawberry Shortcake, Cheesecake, any berries, Molten Chocolate Cake, and gummy Frogs

What I would do with 100 million dollars... buy a house, new cars, a plane, give some to each of my family members, buy a new wardrobe oh, and retire

5 Favorite TV shows... Lost (starts Feb '08), CSI (original), Gray's Anatomy (I can't explain this one...I just like it), Gilmore Girls ( I know it is off the air, just one of my all time favorites) and I really like the new show Pushing Daisies

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Haley's 5th Birthday

Today I am writing in purple because it is Haley's favorite color. Her birthday weekend is finally over. It started on Friday with her actual birthday. She turned 5, and is now a big girl. She had a nice birthday. She got some new clothes and then she got to pick out where we went for dinner. She chose Applebee's. We sat to eat at 7pm, which is late for the kids, but they managed to behave themselves...pretty well. She managed to keep the birthday crown on all though dinner. She then managed to wear it most of the day on Saturday. On Saturday she a long (20 minuite) conversation with Lewis' mom on the phone. I don't know what she said, but she said it was her best conversation ever. On Sunday we had a family party with her Grandma, and Grandpa Balmanno, Cris and Marlo (my brother and his wife) and their 3 kids. It is also Michael, their youngest's birthday so they celebrated together. We had lasagna, garlic bread, swedish meatballs, salad, and 2 kinds of cake! Haley had a cheesecake and Michael had a chocolate cake. Haley got a new art set, a Strawberry Shortcake book, and finger puppets and a puppet stage. I think overall it was a great day for her! She still has one birthday surprise left, but that will not come until next week. I told her in leu of a party that I would take her and 1 friend to Sweet N' Sassy. It is a little spa place for little girls to get manicures and pedicures, and to have their hair done. It is so expensive though so I told her 1 friend. She wanted to have a whole party there but no way!! It would be like $200 to $250 for 5 girls!!! It is crazy. Still she is excited to go and take her friend Sage. I will post pics after they go.
So I have a funeral to go to tomorrow. I hate funerals. I never know what to say or do. My dad says it is because I do not know how to deal with death. Maybe he is right...maybe not. This will be my second funeral and/or service in 2 weeks. It seems like whenever I have funerals they come in 2's or 3's. Never 1 at a time. It is weird. Oh well. I will write more later.....

Thursday, October 4, 2007

First Sickness of the Season and More

I was at work yesterday meeting with one of our food suppliers and I started to feel congested. Now this usually happens when I am meeting with this particular person because he wears an abnormal amount of cologne. I mean not just a is like he takes a bath in it right before he gets to my office. It usually stuffs up my nose and makes me sneeze. So anyway I did not think anything of it until I left to get the girls from the babysitter. I was sneezing and my throat started to feel dry. Oh no. Right? I am going to have a sinus infection in a matter of days. This happens to me every fall here in Utah. Last year I got 4 of them. My doctors told me it is because of the inversion.
I totally believe this because when I go to Park City I feel great. I clear up completely, once I am out of the valley. When Lewis and I went to Las Vegas for work last October I had a sinus infection. After 12 hours there I was feeling like a new person. No congestion, no cough and my voice returned... that is until I went home to the dust bowl where we live.
I am looking out of my window right now over the Salt Lake Valley and it is so disgusting what I see. Even with the wind blowing there is a layer of gray, brown smog. No wonder I get sick in October every year. The worst part is they told me there is no way to avoid it unless we move. Great. I am not ready to move.

So on to something more exciting. Tomorrow is Haley's 5Th birthday!!! She is so excited to be a big girl. She informed me today that she no longer wants a night light. She is too big. Well, we will see how long that lasts. The boys gave up their night lights, and then wanted to buy lava lamps to have on at night because "they look cool". So I wonder how long it will be until Haley wants a "cool" lamp in her room too. Probably 2 nights. For her birthday she wants to go to Sweet And Sassy. It is a little girls spa type place. The do your hair, paint your nails and then you get to dress up and walk the cat walk. It is very fun, and very expensive. So as a compromise we are going to have a family party and then she gets to choose 1 friend to take with her to Sweet And Sassy. They will go next week. I will have to post pictures of them after they go.

Ok thats it for now. I need to take some medicine.