Meet The Nat Pack!

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The Nat Pack: The super fashionable, super mod, super hip family consisting of Nat, Pete, Jakob, Brock, Troy, and Ivy. Like The Rat Pack, only younger, cuter, and not as rich or famous.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Old and New

Old: Here is part of one of our old couches, the Aztec couch. It was a hand-me-down from my parents. We had it for 8 years; my parents had it for at least 8 years before that. The footrest on one section wouldn't kick in any more-it leaned to the left. You'd try to move it and the back would come completely off. Oh, and it used to be a 5-piece sectional, down to three, then down to two. It fell apart, section by section. And no, it didn't come frayed like that.

Old: Downstairs couch #2. The plaid couch. The best nap you'll ever get in your life couch. The cushions can make an ideal house/fort couch.

The plaid couch is also a hand-me-down from my parents; they bought it when I was 6. So it's the almost 25-year-old couch. The can't sit on it, because you'll sink so far in couch. The springs are popping through the padding couch. The toothpaste mushed into the arm couch. The lumpy, bumpy, hanging on by the skin of its teeth couch.

Old: My boys thinking that butts-and butt pictures-are so awesome.

Old: My dad. (KIDDING!!) It's just old news that it was his birthday the day before Easter, and I just haven't blogged about it for some reason. In summary: my dad rocks, his birthday was fun, and I wish I could be more like him.

Old: More furniture. This chair is featured in pictures at my parents' house when I was, mmm, 1, I think. Of course, it didn't have that huge crack on the seat back then, but 30 years and jumping little boys will do that to vinyl. It lays back really really fast, and has put more dings in my wall than I care to count.

Old: But not in super bad shape-the upstairs couches. We've had them for nearly 5 years, but again, they were hand-me-downs from my parents, and I swear they got these when they got the Aztec couch. So, maybe 15 years old?

New: Jake's pajama pants. I sewed 2 pairs for my growth-spurt boy in about a half hour. I love fleece-it's so forgiving. I gave them a huge hem, too, so that when he shoots up another 2 inches in two months, I'll be able to just let them out and they'll still fit.

New: Upstairs couches. Sage green. And microfiber! (Translation: perfect for kids.) My kids love that they can rub the fabric one way, and it gets all dark, and then rub it the other way, and it's light. Hours of entertainment.
New: My zeal for finding old people on New Family Search. Both frustrating and fun.

New: Downstairs couches. No more holes! No more sinking in! No more crazy footrest! Dark brown, man-made leather, and very comfy.

New: Upstairs chair, that actually goes with the downstairs set. It still reclines but slower, and with a button!

New: Rules and regulations for my kids about couch kindness. No jumping, no climbing, no cushions off, no markers/crayons/writing utensils, no food. Of course, these rules are actually all old rules, but now we need to enforce them.
So now I guess I need something borrowed and something blue. (I've actually been thinking I want to paint my downstairs family room a light blue. Hmmm.)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Thanks A Lot

So. I'm trying to be a better person. Once again, I've been working on personal progress, and one of the goals is to be more grateful; another is to be a peacemaker.

Last Thursday, I was the total opposite of both of those in a very bad, very very opposite way.

Let's just say my kids are lucky that they are still alive.

I decided I needed to repent. So, here's a list of things for which I am thankful. YAY!

1. I'm grateful for sunny days. LOVE the sun.
2. I'm grateful for rainy days. LOVE the rain.
3. I'm grateful for Babe's Bakery, and their yummy Veggie Sandwich. Mmmm.
4. I'm grateful for my church.
5. I'm grateful for my memory-the ability to remember some things.
6. I'm grateful for chocolate.
7. I'm grateful for my sight.
8. I'm grateful that Pete has a job with a steady income.
9. I'm grateful for my house.
10. I'm grateful that I don't have to pluck chickens in order to eat them.
11. I'm grateful for good songs, with good messages.
12. I'm grateful for the ability to hear.
13. I'm grateful for amazing teachers.
14. I'm grateful for a good night's sleep.
15. I'm grateful for tulips.
16. I'm grateful for good books.
17. I'm grateful for the temple.
18. I'm grateful for prayer.
19. I'm grateful for my cuddle bug Troy.

20. I'm grateful for laughter.
21. I'm grateful for hugs.
22. I'm grateful for kisses.
23. I'm grateful for modern technology.
24. I'm grateful for my hands.
25. I'm grateful for lazy Sundays.
26. I'm grateful for my creative Jakob.

27. I'm grateful for Coke.
28. I'm thankful for my heated blanket.
29. I'm grateful that Pete will cuddle with me.
30. I'm grateful for my many, many clothes. (Even though I have to wash all of them. But hey, we're not naked.)
31. I'm grateful for my health.
32. I'm grateful for my calm Brock.

33. I'm thankful for vacuums.
34. I'm thankful for my children's health.
35. I'm grateful for my amazing parents and sisters.
36. I'm grateful for my talents.
37. I'm thankful that I feel the urge to become a better person.
38. I'm thankful that I know so many amazing women that I can attempt to emulate.
39. I'm grateful for my happy Ivy.

40. I'm thankful for dancing.
41. I'm thankful for cookies.
42. I'm grateful for beautiful pictures that my kids draw for me.
43. I'm grateful for learning in every aspect of my life.
44. I'm grateful for clean sheets.
45. I'm thankful for cool movies I can watch with my kids.
46. I'm grateful for easy dinners.
47. I'm thankful that I can stay at home with my kids.
48. I'm grateful for good customer service.
49. I'm grateful for ancestors and their sacrifices.
50. I'm grateful for the ability to walk.

...and so much more.

What are you grateful for?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Last night I was doing the dishes.

I realized that a lot of what a mother does is very repetitive. Sometimes it seems that, as soon as we do it, and YAY! it's done!, we have to do it all over again. Dishes. Meals. Changing diapers. Grocery shopping. Laundry. More laundry. (Did I mention laundry?)

Even what I say to my kids is the same old thing. Day in, day out. ("Time to clean up", "brush your teeth", "sit down and eat please", etc.)

A hamster wheel. Around and around.

Groundhog Day.

Have you seen that movie? Basically, the main character, Phil, is stuck in the same day, repeating the same actions. Eventually he learns that he should take advantage of the time he is given: to help others, to improve their lives, and to improve and perfect his own life.

So, back to my dishes. I realized that, I can do the same dishes the same way, over and over, and have a crappy attitude about it, or I can see it as an opportunity to perfect myself. I can do my dishes (among other duties) and become a better person, a better mom, because I get to repeat my daily actions so much.

Another movie analogy: Karate Kid.

Mr. Miyagi has Daniel do chores, over and over, that don't seem to relate to karate at all. But one night Daniel realizes that, even though it seemed pointless, he was actually learning the right moves and building his muscles the right way so that he could be great at karate.

My "pointless" tasks of keeping house? It just means I'll be fit for the kingdom. When I'm doing dishes, I'm not just doing dishes, but I'm teaching my children that cleanliness is next to godliness, that we need to take care of what has been given to us, and that we're blessed with work, not cursed with it.

And here is a scripture I memorized not too long ago, that I think are the characteristics of a great mom. I hope I can polish them up in this life: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance; against such there is no law. -Galatians 5:22-23

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Spring Break Projects

You know how I said I don't have any hobbies? Well, I can think of one. A big one. I like to organize. Okay, so it's not a really cool hobby, per se,'s totally me. And I own it.

I'm a nerdy organizer!!

Oh, and I'm also a minimalist. Big time.

Toss that crap out!


I don't know if it's the nasty weather. Or the extra time that I've had this week with not running kids around to activities, or teaching piano lessons, or helping with homework. Or the fact that it's just Spring Break, and my brain thought, "Hey! Spring! Spring = Cleaning!" But something has got me going on projects.

I wiped down my stair well, and both of my halls. I organized my pantry today. I cleaned out both of my hall closets. I made a run to the dump and to D.I.

So refreshing!

But part of my downstairs hall closet held a bunch of disorganized pictures. Seriously, it could keep me up at night. I think I've mentioned about 5,000 times how much I've been wanting to digitally scrapbook. This isn't just one project, though. It's scanning stuff from the last two years to add to the digital pictures. It's scanning my baby pictures, and my kids' "professional" yearly pictures. It's...just so much.

Here's a picture. Tip of the iceberg, my friends.

But, I figure I have a good 8 hours coming my way this weekend. If I just sit and listen to conference, I fall asleep (it's those soothing apostle voices!). If I sit and listen and scan pictures, I'll get double the awesomeness in the same amount of time. And then hopefully I can keep the momentum going until the dang thing is done. (Another thing about me: I hate having partial projects laying around. I like to focus on one thing at a time, and get 'er done.)

To my pictures and my scanner, I have one thing to say. And I will say it using a quote from "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs": See this contact? This represents you. See my eye? My eye represents my eye. As in, I've got my eye (sticks in contact) on you.

Bring it on, mountain of pictures.

Bring it on!