Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Still more Christmas Break Fun

We took the boys to Flagstaff over the weekend. I know half of the country is digging out of snow and likely cursing it the whole time. We are thankful for it. I love the snow and I love the rain. Anyway we took the boys up to play and we had a great time. We had a great time sledding and even just watching it. The sledding hills were packed and thankfully, we had no injuries. Levi slept through it all. AJ had the most fun sledding with his brothers, but Jake and Caleb had the most fun of all.

More Christmas Break fun

We got up this morning and I decided enough is enough. We needed to get out of the house again so we went on a 6.5 mile bike ride. We stopped at the park for an intermission. This also served as an incentive for the boys to go and complain less. It worked. I got my exercise, the boys got out some restless energy, Ryan got to sleep undisturbed and we all got some fresh air. They obviously had fun at the park, they usually do. Ryan woke up and called me and we were about to go home when another boy came out and they ended up playing t ball with him. How could I make them leave? So of course, we stayed another 45 minutes. It was worth it even though I didn't get to see Ryan but for a few minutes, that part sort of bites. My days have sort of run together and I didn't even realize that today is New Years Eve. The boys want to stay up tonight. I'm sure that will be some good pics to post tomorrow. By the way I think my legs are dead, it's been awhile since I've ridden that long. It wouldn't be a problem if I wasn't pulling 50 pounds of kids behind me in the trailer. I love that thing!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!! Our Christmas started early, very early and unfortunately, Levi had a rough night which means I had a rough night and I wasn't ready for it to start, but after Ryan got home this morning from work (he pulled an overnight) we started. As you can see, the paper tearing was enjoyed by all. Levi didn't take long to catch on but AJ was all too happy to help him anyway. Jake and Caleb had a great time also. After the gifts were opened, Ryan went to bed and the boys disappeared upstairs to play with very loud Firetrucks, tractors and police cars and a tunnel that the babes got. Even though the boys didn't get alot of presents this year they all enjoyed the ones they got and apparently the ones their brothers got also. We snacked all day on leftovers from Mary's party last night, as always a good time and great food. Tonight we had our traditional Christmas dinner and then Ryan went back to work. I'm looking forward to Saturday when he will have a day off and a night off. Did I mention that he is amazing!? I'm debating on going out tomorrow for the awesome after Christmas shopping, we could use a couple of things and I read the sales are supposed to be incredible. I'm not eager to take four boys to the stores but I probably will, mostly to get them out of the house so that Ryan can sleep. I bought him ear plugs but I think quiet is still better. I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and remembered to be thankful for the reason we celebrate it, I know we did. Love to all!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Ok, I know it's not politically correct to call it Christmas Break, it's supposed to be winter break now. I don't care. For me and mine, it will always be Christmas Break. Anyway, the boys are on CHRISTMAS BREAK and we are it's only Tuesday I'm already exhausted and my house is a mess! I can't even remember what we did on Saturday, Sunday is a blur. Yesterday we made cookies all day and I do mean all day. We finished about 3 and quick got ready to go to Mesa to the temple to look at the lights and eat at Matta's, which is Ryan's fav restaurant and a must hit everytime we go to the temple. I know the weather man called for rain but come on it's Arizona and they are hardly ever right, it usually doesn't actually happen. Last night it did, we walked around the temple grounds in the rain. Oh well, it was still pretty and the boys still enjoyed it and I'm still thankful for the rain. Today we went hiking in the white tanks and did the waterfall hike, with all of the rain recently, the waterfall was flowing and there was water in the wash. It was a nice little walk and of course the boys had fun. I like going and getting some exercise while the boys burn off some energy. We stopped at the visitor center this time to let the boys look at all of the snakes. They make my skin crawl and my stomach knot but the boys are fascinated. They had one particular diamondback rattler that as soon as we walked by it's cage, it coiled and poised to strike and was hissing and rattling. The ranger said they don't strike at the glass but then he looked at him and said, "well he sure looks like he is going to this time doesn't he." The boys really liked that. They also have a gila monster and the boys liked that and the scorpions and tarantulas the best. They are definitely all boy but anyone who knows them already knew that. When we got home from that I made still more cookies while the boys watched movies and then tonight we went caroling, at Jake's request. We visited a couple of friends and delivered some of the cookies we made. Now you can see why I am already beat. Mary called and said if it rains tomorrow she is moving her Christmas Eve party over here, that's okay with me but now I have to mop my floor and stuff tonight instead of tomorrow. That's no big, it's going to be fun. Ryan says I'm glutton for punishment but I'm glad the boys are enjoying their CHRISTMAS break. Anyway, I'm not sure how long I can keep this going but I know that after Christmas they'll be busy with their new stuff so I can sit still for a few minutes. It's fun anyway and I'm glad we are making memories they'll enjoy.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


We had our ward Christmas party last night and of course Santa knows what a great time it is every year so he always comes and hangs out with the kids. AJ wouldn't sit on his lap this year but I thought he might this year since we have been talking about it so much this year and he has been saying that he will tell Santa he wants candy for Christmas. He calls Santa "Christmas" for some reason. As you can see from his face in the picture, he wasn't trusting him enough to take his eyes off of him even for the picture. He definitely wasn't going to sit on his lap. Caleb got a santa hat from my mom and was having a blast with that, as you can plainly see. Tonight was our annual Maher Christmas party and this year we did it at our house. Considering that we have a pretty big family and a not so big house, it went pretty well. The food was delicious, the desserts were delightful, the gift exchange was fun (we got Wall-E, sorry Karla), the kids had fun playing upstairs and if the quality of the fun correlates to the noise level, they were having fun. Considering how many kids were here and how loud it was, the mess is, actually, not bad at all. I love Christmas. Not for the gifts although it's fun to give and nice to get. I love Christmas for all of the opportunities we have every day to celebrate the life of our Savior. I am so grateful for his atoning sacrifice. I am thankful for my husband and children. I am thankful for all of my family. I am thankful for wonderful friends. I am thankful for more blessings than I can ever name.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Stick em up varmint!

I turned around in time to see AJ just like this. Then he pulled out his guns and told me to stick em up! He is such a miniature version of his older brothers. They used to do the same thing. Caleb used to put his in his belt. I think the pockets are my favorite. My boys are so boy and they crack me up. His stick em up face is hysterical. He is so serious.

Yuuummmmyyy Oreos!

Levi discovered that he REALLY likes oreos. We bought some Christmas Oreos yesterday and he got one for dessert after dinner. He wore a lot of it, thank goodness for oxyclean! He had to break in those three new teeth! Caleb was enjoying his dipped in milk, my personal favorite. I haven't made any Christmas cookies this year and it feels like my Christmas is missing something. The boys are done with school until after the holidays and so I think we'll bake on Monday. I might invite some friends over since having the boys help me will be go better with another grownup to help me. Any mom will know exactly what I mean. I love them so much!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My Wonderful Caleb

So... Caleb is a wonderful but challenging spirit. I often see him do mischievious things but just as often he does wonderful things just as quietly. He never seeks recognition for anything he just does it. We had a yard sale a couple of weekends ago and Caleb's friend Derek came over. Derek is over at our house daily and is constantly wanting to be here. Anyhow, Derek wanted to buy something but didn't have any money. Caleb went into the house and took money out of his piggy bank and gave it to Derek to buy something. I thought it was interesting that instead of just giving it to Derek he took his own money to let him buy it instead. This picture is from when Caleb shaved a stripe into his hair. I wasn't happy. Today I got a phone call from his school. I saw the number on the caller ID and was instantly afraid something bad had happened. When the Dean of Students was on the line I thought it was something related to football since the boys are playing. Then he said I have your boy in my office. I said which one? Caleb was in his office having gotten a positive referral. I had never heard of a positive referral, when I was in school a referral meant you had done something bad, since Caleb is unpredictable, I asked what he had done. Then Mr. Kemmer told me. Caleb had helped a fellow student pick up his change he had dropped, given it all back to him and gone back to work. His PE teacher had seen and was impressed with his awesome behavior and had given him a positive referral. I was so proud. I was also very pleasantly surprised that the school recognized kids for their good behavior not just their poor choices. Caleb is so awesome. He is so challenging but so amazing. He told me he wasn't going to help but the spirit told him to so he did. He is AWESOME!!!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Our Christmas Picture

So... We were asked this year if we were doing a Family picture. I decided that since we didn't do one last year we should probably do one this year. We decided it would be more economical to do it at home. So we did. We had Luke come over and take our picture in our front room. Ryan has no patience and taking family pictures with 4 little boys is no small undertaking. We took many pictures and finally settled on the one I have now placed behind our blog title. I think it turned out pretty well, I only had to crop out one dog and he at least wasn't blocking anyone like Jazzmin was in some of them. Sometimes I think if they put a camera in our walls, we could be a sitcom with all of the off the wall and downright hysterical stuff that these boys do.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Our Dune trip

So, we went to the dunes with Ryan's brother and family and some of their friends. I knew it would be fun but I didn't realize it would be that much fun. Thursday Jake was in my bed at 5, completely dressed and ready to load the trailer. On Friday AJ woke up at 6 on Friday and kept repeating Allie, Rhino, dunes. The worst was on Saturday when he woke up at home, he went to sleep at the dunes and woke up at home. He was very mad and kept saying dunes go back! The boys had a blast and didn't stop all day. If you know my boys that isn't anything new. It was nice for them to have plenty of room and dirt and stuff to do all day. I had to make them stop to eat lunch and dinner. They were so tired they, even AJ slept all night and never even turned over. It was nice to hang out and enjoy each other and just have fun. I felt bad for AJ though, he is too little to ride the quads but he wants so badly to do everything his brothers do. It was alot of fun and I can see why people get so into it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

the monster sleeps recent months AJ has become attached to his towel. After he takes his bath he wraps up in his towel and the only way to get him into pajamas without bloodshed, ok not that bad but almost, is to promise he can wear his towel over his pj's. Usually it resembles a cape. He wears it to bed and when falls asleep, I hang it back up on his hook in the bathroom. Today was a very busy day and AJ never got a nap. Suffice to say the evening was less than pleasant but at 5:30 he fell asleep next to me on the couch like this, watching Christmas movies with his brothers. I love it. My favorite is the towel over his eyes as he slumped down into oblivion. As I type he has made his way down to a laying position never having awakened and his brothers have just finished their movie and are off to bed. They are so awesome, I love them so much and they are so much fun.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Levi turns 1

So... Levi, my baby, turned one today. It was pretty mellow. Since today was Sunday we went to church as usual and as soon as I walked into the chapel I remembered that we were feeding the missionaries tonight. Luckily I had already made chili and it was in the crockpot at home keeping warm. So for today, he got some regular milk, he doesn't care for it and who can blame him, and a brownie with a candle. We all, including the elders, sang happy birthday to him and then AJ tried to blow out his candle and drooled all over the table, barely missed the brownie. It was pretty gross but very funny. The boys were all tired from being up so late last night at the light parade and so they went to bed right after this. We are having a slightly bigger birthday celebration for him in 2 weeks at the same time as Ryan's family Christmas party. I'm pretty irritated because I don't want his birthday to get forgotten in all of the Christmas hubbub but I guess right now, since he doesn't really know or care anyway, it's no big deal. He is happy with his sweeter than cows milk mommy milk and doesn't care that he is another day older.