The theme for January was Basketball.
It is one of my favorite ways to pass a cold January Saturday.
The boys both played every Saturday and luckily, never at the exact same time.
And sometimes it was too cold to practice outside, there were lots of dribbling drills in the living room.
And don't let this picture fool you, Miles has been loving basketball this season. He just kills me with pictures, always worth over paying when i get a keeper like this.
Lots of BYU games.
Crew finally graduated to being old enough to bring a friend. Lucky for me, he picked Liam, so then I got a friend too. :)
It was Liam's first BYU basketball game, so we pulled out all the stops. Cougar Tail, Getting on the jumbotron, and BYU won. Pretty much perfection. They can't wait to go together again next season.
These girls danced the night away.
and Paul and I got tickets in Domo's suite for a Jazz Game. My favorite kind of date night.
Next up was Snow.
Erin and I found these footprints going between our houses. It was determined to be Miles, although all 8 of kids are crazy enough to walk barefoot in the snow.
I hiked and hiked and hiked in January.
Kacie and I started our own hiking group.
some days were rather frigid, but it didn't stop us.
Although, we were almost stopped by a blizzard. We ended up going to breakfast, but the weather calmed down, so we just headed out for a walk around the neighborhood so we didn't feel like too big of wimps.
- The kids still walked to school or the bus stop (further) everyday, that's just the kind of mom I am. :)
- We finally got some good sledding in.
And Soldier Hollow with the Goodwins.
it was crazy. We'd never been before when you went so fast down the hill. There was lots of crashing into people and the safety barriers, but luckily no one from our group was involved.
Fang turned one!!
I even made him a homemade peanut butter cake with banana frosting.
He didn't quite know what to do when everyone was singing him Happy Birthday.
He just wanted to get to his cake.
This is one well loved dog.
Fang is always living his best life.
Even when being tortured by Ruby.
One of the best parts about Fang though is he keeps the kids company on sick days.
And there have been so many sick days this winter, so at least that helps him earn his keep.
Crew caught the worst of it, with a nasty case of croup. He had to sleep in our room so I could monitor his breathing, meaning I didn't sleep, but luckily he did. After lots of steamy showers, midnight porch sittings breathing in the cold air and a dose of steriods, he finally started to feel better.
- Ruby had her 100th day of school!!
- Macey made it into her school's Geography Bee and did awesome.
- and the rest of January was survived with lots of puzzles, play dates, and book reading under blankets.
Might of actually been one of my shorter January's. February on the other hand seemed to last about 58 days.
december part 2: Winter Break
We flew to Texas for Christmas.
It wasn't quite as bad as I thought it would be to travel with 4 kids and lots of luggage the week of Christmas. It was a long, but manageable day.
Luckily, we've got this flying thing down. and Renting a mini van and beach house made things much less chaotic.
The kids top, number one, thing they wanted to do when we got to Lake Jackson was go to Chuck E. Cheese.
They have been sad since ours closed a few years ago and this filled the holes in their hearts.
My top, number 1 thing, to do was hang out at the beach.
Not a bad way to spend Christmas Eve and get out some energy.
Crew was the only kid that wanted to build a Sandman with me.
And we were the only people on the beach that actually went in the water, pretty sure everyone else was locals. : )
I could of spent days just like this, but sadly we just got the one day.
Luckily, Paul and I did get a few beach walks in during the week.
- Christmas Eve at the beach house.
Everyone was very impressed with my christmas tree and our house decor even added a nice finishing touch to the tree.
Got my Christmas Eve tree and stocking pictures, like always.
Ruby also lost a tooth Christmas Eve, which just added to the excitement of it all.
- Christmas Morning!!
Waiting on the deck cheering Opa on as he climbed the million stairs up to the beach house.
I didn't take many pictures this year. But, we nailed it in the present department. Every kid was happy, grateful, and had a toy to play with.
then it was onto Paul's parents house, where the cousins finally came into town!!
This is it, the only picture I took Christmas Day. But believe me, it was awesome, kids loved being with all The Navasards, and it was very magical.
We spent the rest of the week eating good food and hanging out family.
Brooklyn proved to be the best toy there was.
Some of our favorite food:
Asels, where Crew ordered a donut burger.
So much Shipley's, but yet not enough.
Got takeout from El Torro.
We spent the day after Christmas at Keema Boardwalk.
Another day visiting the museums in Lake Jackson.
Then we did family pictures before we had to head up the airport hotel in Houston.
Kids said it was their best Christmas Ever!
After a very delayed flight home, we picked up Fang with 20 min to spare.
Fang was crying, kids were screaming. it was quite the reunion.
And here's Fang's report card. :)
Kids were also happy that Santa stopped by our house and filled up Fang's stocking. Proved to the younger 3 that Santa is for sure real.
We then had a perfect, mellow, New Years Eve with the Rensinks.
There was Soda Pong.
Just an overall goodtime where kids were asleep by 10:30.
And then we spent the rest of break being lazy and playing in the snow.
Typical Utah kids: the moment the sidewalks and roads are semi clear they are back to bike riding, scootering, and playing basketball.
Paul brought out the water balloon launcher to aid in the neighbor kid snowball fight.
Not a bad Winter Break.
december part 1
The gathering of snow clothes is always the most stressful part of a snowy day. Luckily, I figured out before it was too late that Ruby needed some new winter clothes for walking to school, here she is happily modeling what I picked out.
Since Trina and TJ didn't make it for Thanksgiving, they sent the kids a package to help ease the sadness. Kids of course loved every little thing Trina picked out for them.
I felt like we didn't have as many performances as normal this December and it was weird. Part of that I suppose is because it's the first time since 2nd grade that Macey hasn't done The Scera classes.
The 3 little kids did have a Christmas concert at school, but I took no pictures. You'll just have to believe me it was adorable.
Ruby had a little dance recital.
And Macey had an Orchestra Concert.
and that was it. No stress at all.
I blew up a potato in the microwave. Everyone found it very entertaining. Except me, because i had to clean it up and then had no dinner. :)
Fang is still living his best life.
Finally got him his first pup cup from Sodalicious. He's hooked and now loves Sodalicious as much as the rest of us.
Got a car wash between snow storms and the kids thought this was pretty hilarious.
Ruby got Student of the month for November. They take their pic and get to have a catered lunch with the principal. She loved every minute. And she really has worked her little kindergarten butt off and earned it.
She came into kindergarten a lot behind and has worked hard to pay attention and try when things are tricky. And most importantly, she is kind and respectful.
Finally found the perfect Christmas puzzle for us. We sadly lost 3 pieces in the process of putting it together and everyone is blaming Fang.
We took the little kids to Starwars (Macey went with her friends). Miles and I waited in the hall for the previews to be over. They are always too loud and intense and scary for this one. Who knew the previews for Starwars lasted 30 min!!
Macey threw a wild and crazy Christmas party for her friends.
I love these new friends she's made since our move.
Our main goal for this holiday season was trying to find a way to serve our community and get our kids involved. Plus, buy our kids less. And we finally did it. We only got each kid one present and there were just fine with it.
We decided to adopt some families in our area through United Way.
It was a bit stressful shopping for an entire Christmas for 3 other families, in addition to ours. But, all worth it in the end and we were able to find the things on the kid's lists.
The kids were a bit nervous when we started delivering the presents to the families. but, it was good for them to talk with these moms and see families in different circumstances than ours, but that these families were still kind and nice. Plus, all the families had a little treat for the kids, like hot chocolate or brownies and they just thought that was the nicest thing ever. We will for sure be doing it again next year.
Nana and Pop-Pop came out to visit.
- We had a gingerbread making competition. boys vs girls.
The boys gingerbread house had gingerbread men pooping. machine guns. they wrote Die in frosting on the roof. It was hilarious and wild.
these kids are never boring.
We went to 2 BYU basketball games when they were here.
We went to Christmas in Color again.
It was pure chaos in the car switching kids in and out of the sun roof, but we did it and no one got hurt.
I took my dad hiking.
It was so fun to share something I love with him.
We made Nana's dreams come true by taking her ride the animals at the mall.
We did our Early Christmas.
The Nerf guns they got the boys were huge hits.
And everyone had a chance to wear their Christmas best.
Next up...Christmas Break.
November was one of our more mellow months this year, it was much needed and appreciated.
- We spent a few sunny afternoons at a new park
with our friends.
- We all passed many hours enjoying Disney+
- So much BYU Basketball
. We have really enjoyed having 6 season tickets this year.
- Crew got glasses
- Holly went to Grandparent's Lunch
at school with the boys. They've never cared about not having grandparents to join them all the other years, but this year, they cared. Holly to the rescue.
- Working with the youth at church
always keeps me busy. We did a movie night and I couldn't resist doing a soda bar for it.
We also had YW's in Excellence. All the cute girls in our congregation.
- We took our last trip to the aquarium
before our pass expired.
We really will miss coming here a few times a month.
- I of course went hiking
every friday with my people.
- Chewbacca Crew
made a lot of appearances this month.
is still the most popular member of our family and likes to be in on all the action.
- We had our last cub scout pack meeting
!!! They did a cub-a-polis.
Miles got 2nd place.
- Miles also had a surprisingly adorable and not too unpolitically correct Thanksgiving performance
- Miles turned 10
!!! Pretty crazy that he's already 10.
He had an awesome birthday party at Nickelcity. I told him he could invite 10 friends. He wanted to invite 14. So, he decided if we didn't get him a present, he could invite 14 kids to his party. Done.
Love all these kids.
His actual birthday was pretty mellow, just the way I like it.
He nailed his 10 year photo shoot.
Miles is my most social child. He is always planning play dates with his friends and searching the neighborhood for kids to hang out with.
He is sweet, a hardworker, cuddly, funny, and just one of my favorite kids in the whole world.
Miles loves all things basketball. Favorite teams are BYU and The Rockets. Favorite players are TJ Hawes and James Harden.
He also loves Harry Potter, Jurassic Park, riding his bike, and playing the switch.
He's a keeper.
there were a few tears before Thanksgiving, because Trina and TJ couldn't come because of the crazy weather. Luckily, we were able to pull out of our sad rut and ended up having a really good and lazy Thanksgiving.
The snow helped out a lot.
We went for a walk before we ate. The kids built their first snowman of the season.
Had to have a soda bar with Thanksgiving Lunch.
We ended the day with seeing Frozen 2, which ended up being way better than any of us expected.
- Normally for Black Friday
we make our kids go on a hike. Lucky for them, the snow meant we went sledding instead of hiking. #optoutside
It was a pretty great sledding trip...which means there was very little whining and mostly lots of laughing.
- We ended Thanksgiving Break by decorating for Christmas
and going to Christmas in Color.
the new sunroof was a huge hit.
It was a good month!
October was another thrilling month around here.
- We tried to enjoy the last of our warm weather.
- We did our last local hike before the snow came up Diamond Fork Canyon.
Fang loved hiking and the kids were much better sports having Fang along.
We also got stuck in a traffic jam of cows. It was very exciting and very gross seeing the cows up close, slobber and all.
- I got to go on my first Kindergarten field trip with Ruby.
Crazy and fun, just what a kindergarten field trip should be.
- Macey had her first Orchestra concert. Because of scheduling conflicts, she is in the 9th grade orchestra instead of 7th grade orchestra. So, with only a handful of hours of experience she was thrown into Symphonic Orchestra. She has worked her butt off and it was so fun to see her first performance.
- We used our fire pit for the last time of the season.
- Paul and Miles went on a trip to Washington DC.
The Astros just happened to be playing in the World Series while they were there. Paul couldn't NOT buy tickets.
They had a blast at the game and Miles' favorite player (Alex Bregman) even hit a grand slam.
Miles' favorite parts were the natural history museum and the national zoo. :)
While they were gone we got hit with an extreme cold front. It was horrible and I still made everyone walk to school.
- We did not make it to a pumpkin patch, like the rest of the state. So, I counted our trip to the aquarium decked out in creep halloween decor, our festive trip of the month.
- After much screaming, anger, and tears, Miles finished his first big project of the year and I didn't have to do it for him. It was a huge feat.
- The most stressful part of the month though, was family pictures
I tried something different this year...no planning or coordinating of outfits. We just wore our coats. It was awesome and saved me on lots of stress and decisions.
- We bought Gerald, our new tent trailer.
and took it south for Fall Break to Goblin Valley, parking it in the exact spot where we went for #momhike the month before.
While it was not as relaxing as my #momhike trip, it was fun to get out and let the kids explore Goblin Valley.
Last time we took the kids to Goblin Valley it was 105 degrees out. A nice 70 was much more suitable for adventuring.
Goblin Valley is just one big play ground. No hikes, just running around and climbing on things.
And sweet caves to explore.
The kids loved their first trip in Gerald and I loved not waking up in a tent.
The 2nd day we explored Little Wild Horse.
It started out with LOTS of whining from Ruby.
Luckily, once we reached the slot canyon, it all subsided and the kids had endless energy running around in there.
Constant bridge making and taking turns going under kept everyone entertained.
They were even cooperative for photo ops.
I see many trips with Gearald in the future, with hopefully less whining and more sleeping.
- Still weekly mom hiking. And an impromptu evening visit to Sodalicious in PJ's for an emergency #momhike pick me up.
- Some of my favorite calm moments captured:
Of course Halloween happened and was crazy.
class party prep
Carving pumpkins the night before Halloween
Stitches after pumpkin carving.
Never a dull moment here. I was headed out the door to a Halloween High Fit Class with my friends, Ruby was running and jumping around the living room on her way up to bed and just smacked her chin on the top edge of the counter. With my wound experience and being able to see the fat in her chin, I just decided to head to the ER. handful of stitches later and zero tears, we were home by 10:00.
And I think we have now been in every ER room at the orem community hospital. :)
I ended up making/putting together most of the kids costumes this year and it was fun to do Halloween costumes again, after a little break.
Crazy, cold and fun night.