Monday, January 23, 2012

Person I Admire #7 (and final)

Julia Frederickson

I’m sure I could go on and on about the people around me that inspire me but I thought I’d wrap it up with one last person.  The final person that I admire is my mother.  Anyone who knows me well, knew this was coming. 

I feel like women are under a lot of pressure to be “super-mom.”  We are expected to be involved in the school, drive our kids to countless practices/games/events, and make sure you are put together all the while.  It seems that we all need to be couponers, bloggers, facebookers, and pinterest watchers.  Don’t forget to be crafty. . . your kids NEED to have amazing birthday cakes, handmade decorations in their rooms, accessories, and scrapbooks documenting every major event in their life.  What I think we have a tendency to forget is that our kids don’t actually care about all that stuff.  They want mom to be aware of them, spend time with them, and love them unconditionally.  This is where my mom excelled.  She was a “super-mom” not because she had or did all the right stuff but because she was completely devoted to her children.  I admire my mother’s patience more than anything.  I can never remember my mother yelling at me or any one of my siblings.  Should I repeat that?  She NEVER yelled at her kids!  She was patient and long-suffering and loving.  My mom was my #1 fan in gymnastics and I think only missed one competition my whole gymnastics career.  She is an amazing teacher as well, she taught us values and principles in the home in a way that made us listen and want to do what she taught.  My mom has always been one of my best friends and confidant.  I remember coming home from high school, sitting on the kitchen counter and talking her ear off as she made dinner.  I talked to her about everything and she was a great listener.  I never understood my friends who hated their moms or spoke badly of them, that was not the kind of relationship I shared with my mother

My mom continues to be a super mom to her grown and married children and super grandma to her eleven grandchildren!  I am so blessed to have such an amazing woman in my life!


Friday, January 20, 2012

Piano Man


The most challenging thing for Carter is anything involving fine motor skills.  As he says, “I just can’t make my fingers do what I want sometimes.”

Needless to say, piano is not something that comes easily, he has to work at it.  We have had many tears and moments of defeat in the past 9 months. 

Carter is also a very determined child when he wants something.  He found out that a few kids were playing songs for the Veteran’s Day Assembly and he (on Monday night) decided he wanted to play the Star Spangled Banner (that Thursday).  His teacher found him a simplified version and he set to work.  I didn’t think it was possible so I encouraged him to practice but told him that if he didn’t get it in time, he could always do it at the talent show.  He practiced more in those few days than he ever has, but he still struggled with the timing and a few notes.  He confidently brought his music to school and played it for the music teacher Mrs. Nelson and bless her heart, she allowed him to play it as prelude while people gathered for the assembly.  It was not perfect but it was such a huge moment for him! 

Since then, his teacher and I have seen a different kid at the keys.  He still gets frustrated now and then and still thinks he should be able to play a piece the first time he tries it, but I see him enjoying it more and sharing it with family members and friends when he can.  Brenda had her 5 students to her house for a Christmas recital and she had Carter open the night with the Star Spangled Banner.  He later played 3 more songs: Up on a Housetop, Jingle Bells, and The First Noel.  His grandparents and a couple of aunts, uncles, and cousins came to support him.  He was very proud of himself and grateful that he had an audience of family who loves him!


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Big White Out


We headed to Big White the day after Christmas with Theresa and Tony.  I was a bit worried the skiing would be bad because they hadn’t gotten a ton of snow yet and a few of the chairs still weren’t open.  Luckily, it snowed on us the first day and continued to snow the whole time we were there. 

005We did presents in the condo with Grandma and Grandpa. 

006007027010What a sad Santa!030029028

Sydney loved this pot holder kit she got from Theresa.  They had fun making some very colorful hot pads!014Check out the new stairs at the condo!  After having to tear out their old ones, they went for the covered version.  Theresa was so happy about them.  She made comments every time she walked down them. 

015While Derek did some skiing at Happy Valley, I took the other ones skating.  Olivia decided it was much more fun without skates!016017018


019020Derek is still the child most excited about skiing.  He doesn’t do a lot of turning so we keep him on the bunny hill but his attitude is great and he loves doing it.  (More than I can say for the older two!)021022024023025026

Gotta love the kids carnival with insane amounts of people smashed into the lodge for some games, mediocre face painting, 20 minute line for cotton candy and lame prizes.  The kids love it!


Unfortunately, Tony was feeling very sick while we were in Canada.  Fortunately, that meant he was willing to stay in the condo with kids while Garth and I skied.  We got to ski together way more than usual.  On the last day, it snowed 6 more  inches so they opened “the Cliff” a chair that had not been open yet this year.  I have never been on the cliff.  It is a double black diamond because it is crazy steep.  I am not an expert skier, I just try to follow Garth as well as I can without killing myself.  When he saw that the cliff had just opened, and we could make fresh tracks on a run, he talked me into going (I’m still not sure how he convinced me.)

cliffSo we did it.  The pictures, of course, look way less intimidating than in person.  When you get to the top you ski to the edge and the beginning is straight down.  Your skis stick out suspended in the air.  My heart was pounding, but I went for it.  I was not impressive down the hill but I made it and I was pretty proud of myself for trying something that I never thought I would do. . . and I will probably never do it again!


Christmas 2011

IMGP4973We kicked off the Christmas season with the Five Mile Prairie Pancakes with Santa.  Derek was really excited to sit on Santa’s lap this year. . . IMGP4975






Olivia was not!IMGP4977For Christmas Eve this year, my cousin rented out a local ice skating rink and all of my cousins and their kids met in the morning for some ice skating and foot hockey.  Derek and Olivia could not wait to skate.  Olivia kept telling people we were going ice skating.  But once she actually got her skates on, her tune really changed.  She ended up doing a lot of sitting on the bleachers.                                                    IMGP4996IMGP4997IMGP4994IMGP4995Derek started out grumpy and defeated but then he caught on and had a great time.  He threw a mammoth tantrum when it was time to go because he did not want to stop.IMGP5003IMGP4999IMGP5001   Ouch. IMGP5004

IMGP5005After skating we went to the church for some soup and play time with cousins.  My amazing cousin Kelly made these huge hula hoops.  Sydney and Addy were the hula hoop queens!                      IMGP5006                                    Christmas Eve night was spent at my mom’s house for the traditional dinner and nativity reenactment. 

IMGP5008IMGP5011                                   We were so glad to have Jordan and Kailee here so we could soak up some baby Georgia time before they headed off to see her family.


Carter played and Derek sang “Jingle Bells”IMGP5021IMGP5022IMGP5025IMGP5026IMGP5027Olivia wouldn’t pose in her new jammies so she grabbed cousin Brooklyn.  Derek was a big fan of his fire truck jammies.





Carter was the highlight of my Christmas this year.  He truly caught the spirit of giving.  Back in October, we were at an Other Mothers quarter sale and he bought this big truck and the stuffed sponge bob for his little siblings then he later bought a bedazzled Hannah Montana shirt for Sydney.IMGP5030The week before Christmas he was stressing because he didn’t have a gift for Garth.  I tried to tell him it was no big deal but he was not having that.  I dragged the kids along to Macy’s one day (in an effort to find jeans long enough for Garth) and Carter kept disappearing and coming up to me with different things asking if it was the right size or if he could afford it.  After many strike outs, he walked up with this golf shirt and it was perfect.  The right size, a brand Garth likes, and on mega clearance for $10.  Carter was thrilled and it was amazing to see his face light up when everyone opened their presents from him.  It was a proud mommy moment!IMGP5029IMGP5031001

Christmas day was spent going to church, playing with new toys and hanging out with the Hamilton’s up at the farm.  Then we came home to pack up the car to head to Canada in the morning.