...and they all lived happily ever after...

...and they all lived happily ever after...

Monday, December 29, 2008

Happy Holidays, have an ear infection

Yesterday, we took Logan to the instacare because he woke up from his nap with a fever and he was just miserable. He hasn't been eating well for a few days and he has had a runny nose, but he is getting teeth in so we didn't think much of it. Well, the poor guy has an ear infection...second one this month. He is on a stronger antibiotic this time, but he is just really miserable today. He doesn't want to do anything but sit on my lap and lay against me. He has red rimmed, watery eyes and hasn't really eaten anything. It was a long night for him (and for Josh and me), I feel really bad for him. Hopefully after a couple of days of medicine, he will start to feel better.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas (and a warmer new year)

We hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas. Ours was certainly unforgettable (and eventful). On Christmas Eve, we read the Christmas story (as always) but this year the kids wanted to act out the story. We scrambled around trying to find costumes to satisfy Aubrey and Bryce. Gavin would only agree if he could be a Power Ranger so we decided who better to protect sheep than Power Rangers and we put him in as a shepherd. Everyone really took to their part. It was a lot of fun and a great way to remember our Savior and His birth.

Christmas morning was early, but fabulous. It is so fun to see kids get so excited about everything, that is one of the great joys of the holiday.
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Christmas afternoon we started cooking. The missionaries were coming for dinner that night and we had decided to make a turkey dinner with all the fixins so it would be a festive meal (is that what they eat in Serbia??). Anyway, for some reason the turkey didn't cook all the way even though we cooked it nearly an hour longer than the bag had said and because the turkey was slow we didn't get the rolls in the oven in time. Dinner was a comedy of errors, but we had a good laugh and so did the elders and we ate things as they became available. That is one Christmas meal they won't forget any time soon.

Next, about eight o-clock our power went out. It got cold, quickly. We put the kids to bed and tucked sleeping bags around them. We put them all in one room to try to keep things warmer. It was a long night. Logan kept kicking out of his blankets and then couldn't get back in so we would have to go tuck him back in. As long as we stayed in bed we were fine, but if you had to get out to use the bathroom or something, it got pretty dicey. The power finally came on the next morning at 7:08, just as we were packing up to head to my mom's for some heat (kids under eight don't sleep in..especially when you don't want to get out of bed).
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Finally, as we went outside that morning we were welcomed to a wonderful white world of winter. It was pristine and untouched and beautiful. Not so much fun to shovel, but our kids had a great time trouncing through the drifts. What a fabulous holiday, we wouldn't change a thing. We are so grateful for our Savior, whose birth and life we get to celebrate this time of year.


Very Happy Holidays to All!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Temple Square Trip

Last night we took our annual trip to Temple Square to see the Christmas lights and displays there. We bundled everyone up enough to rival Ralphie on "The Christmas Story." The kids had a great time. Logan sang to himself as we pushed the stroller around and the other kids had a great time riding on their Uncles (thanks Chris and Micah for being patient pack animals). Parker and Aubrey couldn't leave until we had been up to see the "The Big Jesus" (the Christus), that was very important to them. It was a wonderful evening...all the blisters, cuts and scrapes of those who manage to put up the lights are greatly appreciated. What a beautiful place.



Monday, December 15, 2008

All About Logan

OK, so we have had a lot of fun with Logan this holiday (this is the first Christmas that he is really conscious of) and we thought we'd share some of that. Right after we put up our Christmas tree, Logan took an interest in the lights, but not in the way any of our other kids have. He opted to hold on to the strand and then shove a light up his nose, which sort of lit up his whole face. We thought how horrible it would look if he accidentally got electrocuted and we had to explain to the police that he had been putting lights in his nose and we didn't stop him because we thought it was funny.
Second, with the first real snow, we took everyone outside and Logan hated the snow. He wants nothing to do with it. He screamed and cried when he fell over and his little hands got in it and then he coudln't manage to get up without putting his hands back in the chilly fluff. Thankfully, he has a very sweet big brother in Gavin who was willing to comfort him and try to help him feel better.
Finally, Logan has LOVED all the music of this holiday and has really taken to dancing. All that really means is that he spins in circles and makes himself dizzy, but his little eyeballs also gaze off in the direction that he is turning and we think it is really cute. Kids make the holiday wonderful and everything else too (except messes, and diapers, and sickness, and peace and quiet, and...). Oh, the joys of parenthood. We love it!!!

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Merry Christmas Everyone!!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Small Miracles

This past Monday Aubrey was in a chorus concert for school. They call the program "Winterfest" and it is held at the high school. Eight elementary schools come to sing a couple of songs each and the high school band plays a couple of songs. Aubrey has been to practices every day for a week after school and she was thrilled to be in the concert. The night of the event, Josh was feeling really sick to his stomach so we decided he should stay home. He was asleep when I packed up all five kids and bundled them into the van. I was really worried about keeping my four lively boys quiet and semi-still for an hour plus of singing. I quietly prayed that we would make it through. We deposited Aubrey with her group and then found a place to sit and we sat for over an hour. The boys stayed put. It was a miracle. Logan sat on my lap, content, the entire time. He swayed to the music and clapped at the end of each song. Gavin and Bryce sang along (sometimes Gavin sang his own thing) when they knew the song. Parker made sure to make sure that I noticed he was listening and then clapping for everyone. But no one ran away, no one screamed, no one threw a tantrum, no one even complained about being bored. I was so grateful for the sweet peace that I felt with my little family as we actually enjoyed an elementary school Christmas concert, all six of us. I know that the Lord was with us, in some small way, that night and that the Savior helped my boys be able to "Be still." We have been richly blessed. I have a fabulous family.

p.s. No pictures because while I remembered the children, I forgot the camera.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

May We All Become as Little Children


OK, I know that I just blogged a couple of days ago, but I can't help it. As I said before, we decorated our house for Christmas recently, and one of the things that we did was to put out our Nativity scenes. We have a small resin one that the kids can sort of move around and set up as they want, but they aren't supposed to play with our ceramic one. The other day, I came in to find our Nativity arranged as seen here. Bryce was the only one in the room so I asked if he had been playing with it because this is not how I had set it up. He said "No" he hadn't been playing, but he was worried because some of the people in the display would not have been able to see Baby Jesus from where they were standing so he needed to move them. If only we were all so eager to "see" the Savior in our own lives. I don't think I will move it back. I think this is the way I like it now. Children are such a blessing.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Here We Come


The day after Thanksgiving, our children could wait no longer. It was time to Christmify our house!!We'll share some of the finer points with you. Parker (our nearly five year old)was our photographer. You will notice that our Christmas tree only has ornaments from about the middle up. This is because our one year old, Logan, is a normal one year old child. He cannot help but help himself to anything interesting that is within his reach. Sometimes he just reorganizes the placement of said ornaments, sometimes they find their way between couch cushions or into the sink or toilet. It is all kinds of exciting, decorations and hide-and-seek all in one.
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Next, Parker wanted to show off his ginormous (or so Aubrey says) stocking. This is the stocking that the hospital staff placed him in to bring him into my room when he was first born (he was born on Christmas Eve). He loves this stocking and every year attempts to climb back inside it so that we can see how much he has grown.

Finally, we have our family stockings. I made these during the December of 2000 and I guess we were lucky we made just enough for everyone to have one (we just add their names to the socks as they come along). Josh and I love watching this shelf become more crowded as our family has grown. Christmas with our children is a joy. We love the songs and shows and stories. Hopefully, we can help them remember our Savior at this time as well. We feel awfully blessed to be a family.


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Dancing Queen

This past weekend I went to a couple of school musicals to see a couple of my girls perform. One of the shows that I saw was "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" at Hunter High School. It was wonderful, very well done, and a lot of fun to watch. However, I think Aubrey had a better time at the play than I did. During one of the songs, the actors came into the audience to take a few people on stage to dance. Aubrey was one of the chosen few. She went up on stage and a sweet Egyptian girl (at least according to her costume) sort of adopted her and they did the twist together. It made Aubrey's night. I wish that I had had a camera there to catch the excitement. It was a pretty fun night. Aubrey and I had a great time together.

Also, lately Gavin has taken to changing his clothes seven times (or more) a day. Any time he gets a drip of water or an almost invisible speck of food on his clothes, he feels compelled to change them...immediately. This makes for a lot of laundry. My parents are probably laughing up a storm at that. I have heard the stories of how I was exactly the same way when I was little. Stupid heredity!!!

P.S. Saw Twilight this weekend...I loved it. YEEEEEAAAAAH VAMPIRES!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Moment of Gratitude

Thanksgiving is a great time to be grateful (of course, when isn't a good time to be grateful). This past weekend I had the chance to spend three hours on Saturday playing volleyball with our ward co-ed volleyball team. It has been years since I have played, but I love volleyball so I was thrilled. It was nice to find that I wasn't as rusty as I had thought I would be (I'm no Misty May-Treanor, but I do alright). It was fun to be in front of a speeding volleyball and be able to get it where it needed to go. It was a little bit embarrassing to serve underhand the whole time, but at least those serves went over the net. Our team ended up taking second place in the tournament and we all had a lot of fun. The next day, despite ugly bruises on my knees and forearms and some severely sore thighs, I made it around and even managed to have a good day. It reminded me how much I love this sport and how grateful I am for great games, wonderful people to play with, and a loving Heavenly Father who remembers who we are, even if a part of that identity is buried somewhere deep below the surface.


We have been trying to help the kids learn about Thanksgiving and the reason that we celebrate this time. It is a little bit hard (when there is already Christmas music and Christmas toy catalogs) to get them to focus on anything but the Santa holiday. However, we are doing our best. For family home evening we watched a show about William Bradford and Squanto and the first Thanksgiving. The kids were a little more interested in pretending to be Indians than really paying attention, but we gave it a go. Josh and I feel very blessed that these precious souls have been entrusted to us and we hope to do the best that we can to bless them and help them grow into the amazing people we see within them. I guess our Heavenly Father probably feels the same about all of us.


Bryce tells us he is most thankful for legos, his school teacher, and bionicles. Aubrey says she is thankful for clothes, food, and her family. Parker is thankful for the color red, pre-school, and ice-cream. Gavin is thankful for his primary teacher, Dino Rangers (like Power Rangers) and Ben Ten Alien Force. Logan is a little small to tell us what he is thankful for, but we know he loves his binki and blanket and anything small enough to put in his mouth. As a family, we have been very blessed. We have a beautiful home, wonderful friends and family, a job our dad loves, working vehicles and even an overly obnoxious dog. Most of all, we feel blessed to be able to be together as a family and to have a Heavenly Father who loves us and cares for us. We love you all.


Happy Thanksgiving!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Kids, Toilets, and Noses

It's funny how being a parent puts you in touch with things that you never really thought much about before you had children. For example, since becoming parents, Josh and I have learned how to remove and replace toilets (with three removals and two replacements, we are old pros) , how to counteract a variety of clothing stains, how to appreciate "Magic TreeHouse" and "Magic Schoolbus" books, how to clean up puke without puking yourself (that one's easy, you ask your sweet husband to handle it), and so forth.
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Another thing we have come to know is how to get things out of children's noses. While we have removed things from the nose of almost all of our children (thank you Bryce for not stuffing things up there and hopefully Logan will choose not to do that as well), most of our nose object removal knowledge has come courtesy of our now three year old, Gavin. This week Gavin came in to our bedroom complaining that his nose hurt. When we asked why it hurt, he looked at us with this "Duh, because I shoved a little green plastic ball up it" expression. Fortunately, we are not amateurs in this arena (although we have had to take Gavin to the doctor to remove other objects). Josh expertly maneuvered the offending ball and the universe was returned to normal. You can always count on Josh when nostril probing is required.


We have also learned to appreciate home movies made by our little ones. Aubrey has been the creator of late and below you will find her latest cinematic creation. You will note the Christmas music in the background, the kids cannot get enough of it. Poor left out Thanksgiving. Enjoy her little show.


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Kids definitely keep life interesting. As a side note, we just found out this week that Bryce's reflection contest entry (a picture of Moka...it's in a previous post) is going to be moving on to the district level of competition. We're not sure if that means he was first place in his school or top two or three, but either way we are really proud of him. He worked hard on that project.


Life here is never dull, that is for sure!!! (but that's the way we like it)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

OFF TRACK LAMENT!!!

Well the kids are off track. Is that enough information to relay the chaos that currently reigns supreme in our home? With all five children at home all day, the awful din that reverberates through our entire neighborhood is sure to send tremors throughout a one block radius. However, on the other hand, the sounds are mostly happy ones so it is all worth it. I do get a little bit worn down by the constant state of vague mess that seems to hover throughout the house now, I just don't seem to be able to stay on top of it all...by the time one is cleaned I have been preoccupied long enough to leave time for another one to magically appear.

It's times like these that I am really grateful for my sweet husband. He is sure to laugh when I am being ridiculous, or step in when I am about to lose it, or just wrestle with the kids when they need a break from me. We wouldn't stay sane without Josh. He is currently a high school psychology teacher. It is his first year at Murray High School, however, he is already one of the more popular teachers. In fact, they had to add another psychology 1 class 2nd semester because the two that were scheduled filled up completely. His sports psych class, which had 16 students this semester, is also much more full next semester. The kids really enjoy him and we couldn't be more proud of our dad. He keeps us all happy. We love him!!!
I am also grateful for fabulous books that let me escape for a few moments into someone elses world. I am currently re-reading the Twilight books. Boy, I love those, they are so much fun. To think I ignored them because I don't usually care for vampire books.
Off track or on, it is such a blessing to be able to spend all day every day with my little ones, my favorite people in the world. I can't lie, I am grateful for nap time and I might not be sane without it (wait, am I sane now...ok, that's debatable). I am sure grateful for your family, even with the destruction and yelling and fighting and mess at home with all five kids, I wouldn't trade it for the world. What could be better than family.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!

Halloween is so much fun! This has been a great season for our family. Last night we carved our pumpkins and had a wonderful time. Bryce always hates pulling the guts out of the pumpkin, he doesn't care much for goopy, messy things. Gavin and Dad worked hard together to make a happy/scary pumpkin. Aubrey designed her jack-o-lantern face and then cut out Logan's pumpkin for him while Dad cut out most of hers.


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Parker did his cutting entirely by himself. It got pretty hard but he really stuck with it. Logan was very protective of his pumpkin and didn't want anyone to get too close to it. They turned out well and it was a great night for our family.

Earlier in the month, we also took our yearly trip to Gardner Village to visit the witch displays there. If you haven't ever been, it is a really fun (and free) activity, especially for kids. This year we downloaded a scavenger hunt that you can do while you are there and after we found everything on the list, we got a 25 cent cookie from the bakery at Gardner Village. We all had a really exciting time and the kids all loved the cookie at the end.


All in all, it has been a great month and a wonderful holiday. We are looking forward to trick-or-treating tomorrow and class parties and all of the fun that comes with Halloween. Have a very...

Happy Halloween!!!

From the DeMouxs





Monday, October 27, 2008

What is Joy Anyway

Children bring us joy. I don't mean that only in the grand sense of things in some immense gigantic way. I think children remind us of the joy that there is in small things. Today, we went to the park to play. Bryce, Aubrey, Parker and Gavin made immediate friends with every other child at the park (age 2 years to 11 years). They ran around like banshees (which is fine when we are outside) and had a wonderful time with their new bffs. However, Logan was the one that really got to me. He is at that akward age where he doesn't want to sit in the stroller while the other kids play, but he is a little too young to actually be able to do much serious play. Walking on sand is a challenge for him. Yet, because it was hard for him to balance on the sand, he fell over and his little hands ended up immersed in the tiny particles. He was immediately thrilled. He spent the next 30 minutes grabbing handfulls of sand, raising them shoulder height and then dropping them. He couldn't get enough. He ended up covered from head to toe in sand, but he had the time of his life and I remembered how much joy there is in a pile of sand.



Also, Bryce has been working on a project for the reflections contest at his school. Their subject is "WOW" (whoever came up with that lame idea should be sent back to kindergarten where people still have immaginations). Bryce originally wanted to make a video about some times you might say "wow" in your life, but that didn't work out. So, he decided he would take a picture. His subject was our easily excitable dog, Moka. Bryce spent about 45 minutes in the yard trying to get a picture of the entire dog (we ended up with lots of pictures of rear ends as Moka ran through the frame before Bryce got the picture). He stuck with it and we were really proud of him. Take a peek at the picture he chose, he is really proud of it. He, too, is a joy!!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Melissa Hypothesises


I have a theory on smartness (yes, that is the technical term). I propose that an adult female has a certain reservoir of smartness available to her. Each time she gets pregnant, the growing baby, in need of smartness of its own, saps some of the smartness from her reservoir, leaving her happy, but less smart than before. I think I am a prime example of this as with the birth of each child I become more scatterbrained and less quick witted. I simply don't remember things that used to be no problem. However, this weekend I had a surprising surprise. I got a call from my younger brother looking for help with his calculus homework. Naturally, knowing that my smartness is depleted (not to mention it has been 12+ years since I have attempted any calculus) I was skeptical about whether I would be able to help. However, my reservoir of willingness to try anything once is not so depleted so I opted to give it a go. Happily, when I arrived at his house and opened the book I found that although my smartness has thinned, apparently the calculus pods were still intact. Between the two of us (with one late assist by my brother, Kevin) we were able to complete the assignment without too much difficulty. It was nice to be able to work on difficult problems and solve them. It helped me remember the person I once was, smart. My eight year old has a tendency to think that I don't know anything, or very little, and sometimes he is right. It was a great joy to remember that I do know something once in a while, and that my smartness isn't entirely gone.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy Autumn


Fall is such a great time of year. We have spent the last couple of weeks canning, and boy are we all tired of that. But, now we are fully stocked on canned pears and peaches and we have more peach and pear jam than we know what to do with.

But, more exciting than that, we are really looking forward to Halloween. The kids are all thrilled about the upcoming holiday. They have already decided what they want to dress up as. Bryce wants to be a secret agent (not a spy...don't get them mixed up or you get in trouble), Aubrey wants to be a princess/fairy/dancer/teacher. That should be interesting. Parker wants to be Shadow the Hedgehog (thank goodness, we can reuse the costume I made Bryce last year) and Gavin wants to be a fireman or pirate...he can't decide. Logan is going to be a skeleton...he doesn't get to choose,oh, the troubles of being one. Our house is appropriately spooked with decorations of all varieties and we can hardly wait for the big day. What a wonderful time of year!!!

Our Family

It's been a great nine years since the start of our family. We couldn't be more thrilled with the way we have grown (and boy have we grown). After our marriage in August 1999, we welcomed our oldest son, Bryce, in June 2000. Then Aubrey, Parker, Gavin, and Logan joined our family in quick succession. It can be hectic and a little crazy sometimes, but we wouldn't change it for anything.
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