Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Eye-Popping Thanksgiving

What caused this flesh eating bacteria to show up on these girl's faces? Don't they look sad? Answer: highlight here --> Cassandra's Lemon meringue pie froze then turned to mush!
What caused this poor dog's condition? Answer: highlight here--> He ate leftovers, ALL OF THEM!

But that was the worst of it. The rest was good ol' fashioned Thanksgiving day fun. It started off with football. Tackle, in the mudd, in your face turkey bowl. Burnt biscut award goes to Melody, who took Sammy down like Michael Strahan sacking Tom Brady in Super Bowl 42!

How did that feel mel?After the turkey bowl we had turkey platters. Cassandra outdid herself this time. She prepared two birds, one from a Dr. Pepper brine and the other Cherry Coke. Yum! She also baked a storm of pies, from the traditional cream cheese, to the eye-crossing key lime pie. She made a cornbread stuffing worth dying for. Add candied yams and deviled eggs (Melody's deviled eggs non-the-less) and the menu was set. The poor girl, she worked her self silly. I asked her if she was exhausted. she replied:
Need I say more? Oh yeah. My cousin Armando and his family joined us for the feast and games. It was a blast. When you are at our house, remind us to invite him over to play games. You have to play Taboo with the guy, he's halarious. We didn't ask him if he liked the food, we just took a picture. I'd say it speaks for itself:
One more note, Dora the explorer and her friends showed up to the party as well. I'm not kidding! Dora and friends, live and in living color.
Pictured above: Back row from left to right:Boots the Monkey, Tico, Isa; Front: Dora the explorer. Say it with me, Swiper no swiping!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Dear Toot(h) Fairy

Shhhhh. Don't move! Did you feel that? A draft. Asa left the garage door open again? No, wait... it's an open window, I think.

Look closer...

Keep going .....

Stay with me here ...

There! There it is! Ariella lost her first tooth.

And boy was she delighted. She had been anticipating this for a long time. Asa gave her tips about how to do it faster, but she soon found out Asa hadn't tried any of these methods. They are actually methods he would like to see others try, just to see what happens.
Ariella is way too smart for that. Instead she came to Dad for help. She may have been better off with Asa's advice.

She anticipated the tooth fairy so much, that she wrote a letter about two weeks before losing her tooth. Below is a scanned image of the letter. It may be hard to read so I typed it out below.

Mrs. Toot (sic) Fairy,

I am going to lose a tooth tomorrow or the next day or the next day. I hope you put something under my pillow. I hope you put gum or money under my pillow, both probably.

Ariella. You can call me Arianna if you want.

So next time you see Ariella, and you are not sure whether to smile at her or kick a field goal, tell her how grown up she is now that she is missing a tooth. And ask her what the toot fairy brought her. Call her Arianna for extra points.

When Pigs Fly!

When pigs fly, the garage will be cleaned, the yard will be manicured, and all of the laundry and housework will be done.  Oh yeah, we will have pleanty of money to pay all of the bills, enjoy some family time and even help those less fortunate.

Well, pigs didn't exactly fly, but swine flu.  Get it? swine (pigs) flu (flew).

It all started with Ariella coming down with a low-grade.  For a couple of days she wasn't herself.  She got over the aches rather quickly but still complained of headaches and stomach aches.  One day later Asa wakes up announcing he wasn't feeling well and that his chest hurt.  This is where Cassandra swings into action and gives him a hit of Albuterol-some leftover from an underlying asthma issue about three years ago.  When he spiked a fever, it was time to call Dr. Erickson.  Given Asa's history, Erickson decided to have him brought in--through the back door!  Asa feels like a patient with clout when he gets to come in the back door.  Dr Erickson had him tested. Comfirmed.  Swine flu.  Probably what Ariella had as well.  And Malachi came down with it not long after that.

The great thing is that our kids pray every day.  They pray for health.  Divine health.  Asa has taken it upon himself to pray for anyone who gets sick in our family.  I know God hears and answers these prayers.  Although Malachi coughs and hacks, it appears that the worst is behind us.

Cassandra and I? we are doing our best to keep this flu at bay.  However it's funny that we attribute any small case of indigestion, or headache, or not wanting to wash dishes to the swine flu.  But its probably more a case of FDR's assessment in his inagural address "the only thing we have to fear, is fear itself."

So the garage didn't get cleaned, that's my bad!  The yard is not exactly manicured-that's me again, but Cassandra does a fantastic job keeping the house clean and the laundry going.  However, aside from that we can't help but realize just how blessed we truly are.  Thinking about it, the garage-- it gets cleaned from time to time, but like Malachi pointed out one day Americans are crazy, they are the only ones that keep their very valuable cars outside in their driveway and their worthless junk in their garage.   Aint that the truth? The yard?  That too is underutilized right now anyway from all of the rain we've been getting.  It will get its cut soon enough.  As far as the bills getting paid, God has been faithful.  And we still manage to sneak away on occasion to see our loved ones.  Only the good Lord knows how he's helped us help others, but He has.

So spread the word.  Pigs flew already.  Now quit making excuses and begin enjoying the blessings of TODAY!

Monday, October 26, 2009

She shoots, she scores!

The world series is upon us. Millions will be tuning in to see if the Yankees will win and few give Philly a chance. For us, the Gonzalez family, we already witnessed the best the world of sports has to offer. Yup. The stars? Well suffice it to say that they could barely see straight from the blinding lights of the paparazzi's cameras flashing. Okay, there were few paparazzi, but a lot of parents and grandparents.

It all went down on a dry field behind the church on Jackson School Road.

There were three All-Stars we were especially tracking with a glimmer of hope that we might perhaps catch a glimpse of greatness, awesomeness, and sheer athletic brilliance.

All Star #1

Ariella N. Gonzalez (these days, she wouldn't mind it if you called her Ariana).
Height: 4 foot-nothing (that may be exaggerating a bit)
Weight: Princesses do not disclose their weight (sorry)
Position: Team Captain of good form and 'only kick the ball when it comes your way.'
Team: The Dragons (Dragon Breaths)
Notable Highlights: Loved to watch dandelions grow-while playing. Constantly forgot either her water bottle or her pink soccer ball at the field--hey it's either the treats or the water bottle. In her words "Treats, duh!" When the ball got swarmed, she would rather stretch and try to perfect doing the splits. She loved to cheer for her teammates when they scored. Second to the last game, we encouraged her to try and kick the ball into the goal, Please! Just once!, and wouldn't you know it? She did, nearly giving her coach a heart attack. She was all business after that.

All Star #2

Asa G. Gonzalez
Height: Shoulder height to Malachi, but a full head taller than Ariella
Weight: Let's just say were glad a wind gust didn't carry him off
Position: Center, right winger, left winger, defender, and goalie
Team: Out of the Blues (Clues)
Notable Highlights: Routinely neglected to tie his string on his shorts, so he played with one hand on his hip and still outran everyone on the field. I guess it could be said he took them on with one hand tied behind his back. He had smothering defense, no one could score on him when he played goalie, although he preferred playing center. He figured out how to get open so his teammates could center the ball to him in scoring position. He shoots, he scores. Of course I missed that one, but I was told it was a bullet!

All Star #3
Malachi A. Gonzalez
Height: Juvenile Giraffe
Weight: The kid eats rocks
Position: All positions but mostly goalie
Team: The Shadows (shallows)
Notable Highlights: Perhaps the best goalie we have ever seen. His size 13 shoe either blocked any shot in the vicinity or tripped half of the other team's players. He is the only one of the All Stars not wearing cleats because I refused to pay for a pair of shoes he would outgrow before we left the store and would only use for a couple of months anyway. Besides if he would have worn cleats, somebody would have lost an eye. Aside from that, his soccer skills really improved this year. He is still trying to match his best game of yesteryear when he scored 8 goals in one game. Maybe next year.

All Star #4
Tierzah K. Gonzalez (TKat)
Height: Taller both than the cat and dog
Weight: More than the cat, but less than the dog
Position: Cheerleader, grape taster, snack inspector
Team: All Teams
Notable Highlights: Pointed out every plane that flew by, barked at every dog, shared snacks with a girl twice her age (the girl looked for us every game after that). Sampled the pinot noir grapes that grew by the fence, nearly learned to say: "she shoots, she scores" when her older sister scored that blistering goal.

It's the Great Pumpkin!!

In the immortalized words of Linus:

Each year, the Great Pumpkin rises out of the pumpkin patch that he thinks is the most sincere. He's gotta pick this one. He's got to. I don't see how a pumpkin patch can be more sincere than this one. You can look around and there's not a sign of hypocrisy. Nothing but sincerity as far as the eye can see.

It's true, we found it. The most sincere pumpkin patch of all. Each of the kids picked out their favorite pumpkin, but after looking at their pictures of the final product, we are now wondering if it wasn't the pumpkins that picked out the kids.

Hey, is that a hay ride? It is! We can't pass that up! Hay fever? who cares, undoubtedly the hay irritants are smothered by the exhaust from the tractor pulling the cart. I think it was the fumes that finally kicked in that full dose of nostalgia, you know that feeling that fall is in full swing here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Add the face Tierzah was making on the hay ride, that "what is this wonder filled thrill? so new, so foreign" face and that was enough for me to declare "You can pick any pumpkin you can carry!"

Yeah, I had to reel that one back. It turns out that with enough determination, Asa can carry a pumpkin twice his body weight, and not that I'm against paying $60 for a pumpkin, it is just that if I allowed Asa to take in the small pumpkin, Baby Sasquatch, err, I mean Malachi, would want to do the same. Then we would need a stimulus bill passed just to pay for our pumpkins which will sit out by the front door and ... rot!. Cassandra, in her wisdom turned it into a let's try to find the "perfect" pumpkin. Which Ariella interpreted that to mean, 'let's find the pumpkin that most resembles a princess.' That worked out much better. BTW, what do you do with your pumpkins other than the usual oven toasted pumpkin seeds and pumpkin pie?

There it is; we visited the most humble of all pumpkin patches. It was so sincere that the pumpkin bowling was closed for the weekend. And the corn maze? Well we have a teenager who would really like to get back there to try it out. And since this particular pumpkin patch exudes humility and sincerity, we just may take the kids back on Halloween night so they can get presents from the Great Pumpkin. What? You don't believe in the Great Pumpkin? Just you wait. He will come. He will.... 'Norman is that you?', 'coming mother!'
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Guess What I can do?

Reader discretion is advised. If you are not eating, feel free to proceed. Otherwise, come back later. Else you might be exposed to words like 'poopy' and 'potty.' Unless you are a mom, moms don't seem bothered by this kind of stuff, so go ahead and bite down on that breakfast bar and enjoy my first post on our family blog.

Yup, she can do it all by herself. Well, on her own terms that is. Every now and then you are blessed with a child who comes to you, well to her mother at least and tells her that her diaper is yucky. Those of you that have gone down the potty training trail know that when a child can identify the problem, the job is half done. They pretty much potty train themselves. The trade off in this case? It has to be on her terms. But it is just like TKat; on her own terms. The good news is, she prefers using the potty instead of a diapee. The bad news is sometimes she's too caught up in her activities of daily living that she will... well... you know. But like I said, it has to be on her terms. But this being our fourth child we are well aware that a little positive reinforcement goes a long way: Chocolate works most of the time :).

I know that some of your little ones accomplished this feat at an even younger age and others, uh let's jus say they were late bloomers (we had two of those, both boys interesting enough --he blushes, albeit grinning-- ). If you have some of the latter, don't despair the day will come, I promise it will. Just keep a chocolate bar nearby, bubbles worked for Ariella, and may the gods of John Crapper smile down upon you soon. Three cheers for TKat!!!
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Monday, September 7, 2009

Hello?? Anyone still out there??

OK it has been almost a year since I posted! I decided I needed to get back to the posting on here!! I am a failure at blogging!! YIKES!! Anyways...I am turning a new leaf! Since I posted last I started working at a homeless shelter 3-4 days a week! That has been another challenge, but is rewarding. We also now have a TEENAGER in our house! is true...Malachi is now 13...TIME FLIES!!
Most of all we are LOVING LIFE!! We try to enjoy and have fun with our kids on a daily basis! Malachi is 13, Asa is 9 1/2, Ariella is 5 1/2 and Tierzah is ALMOST 2. We play lots of games with them, talk, laugh...which means...our house is messy( a lot of the time)...the kids don't usually get to bed by their bedtimes(yes kids you do have one!)...and there is a lot of laundry to do(hopefully tomorrow :)) But we are happy and LOVE our kids. I will post some new pics tomorrow....from our family reunion, Malachi's birthday...and some others! Love to all!!

New Years backround

My Cute Kids

My Cute Kids
At the Portland Temple