Saturday, March 31, 2012

Soccer & Rain

Spring soccer isn't the warmest so far. Jenna was back playing today although not completely 100% yet. It began to sprinkle toward the end of the game, and Heather poked a couple of large holes in a trash sack and stayed dry while we huddled. The game was lost 0-1 in the 4th quarter, but Jenna did so well at goalie and defense that it didn't feel like a loss at all.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Practice

I took this picture of Heather practicing yesterday for fun, and found myself thinking about practice. I have been blessed with the ability to do things well the first time around, things like school, a new sport or teaching a group of kids at church. This can, of course, be a dangerous thing especially since I didn't have lessons or extra curricular classes when I was young to teach the importance of practice. I have, however, had very meaningful lessons in practice, both good and bad. I'll share the best of both.

In college, I had to take a Biology class. Groan. I was not a science girl, but since I had to take one, I chose Genetic Biology. This seemed fitting because of my Child Development major, and I thought the knowledge might come in handy. It was still science, and because of the material not being repetitive (I really never mastered meiosis and mitosis in high school), I had to work a little harder for a good grade. In order to really get to know the material, I took my notes home each week and recopied them on to note cards. Then I used the notecards to study from. As each quiz and test were taken, I would be shocked at the A I would see on the paper. I was an A student, but never in science or math. When the semester came to a close, I purged my binder and book bag as usual, but I couldn't part with those note cards. That A meant more to me than all the other As I always received. I had finally had a lesson in working hard and earning the accomplishment through practice. I've never forgotten that lesson.

Another lesson I haven't forgotten is the one in which I didn't practice and fell flat on my face. I was to play my flute for a church meeting as I had done other times. I reviewed my music enough to not be sight reading, and I thought myself prepared. In the moments before I played, I was surprised at how calm I felt. I thought I had arrived at some point where nerves wouldn't bother me anymore. I was so calm that I missed some notes and ended up really messing up the flow of the number. I learned that with practice, things are more automatic, kind of like what they say about muscle memory. I also learned that nerves are something that keep you focused. I've pretty much welcomed the nerves ever since. I have also welcomed the blessings of preparing as my prayers are answered to have the music I play sound pleasing to the congregation. When we work hard, we are blessed.

We are in a place right now where our daughters need to learn about practice. Jenna wants to quit piano. I told her that we wouldn't quit until she had had several weeks of practice in a row. She had been discouraged at piano lessons, but had not connected that it was because she wasn't practicing. All of the sudden she is practicing (wanting to show me it won't change her mind), and the music is coming easier. She is having more fun and I haven't heard her talk about quitting for a while. She may still want to quit, but both girls are reaping the rewards of practicing. I hope these memories stay with them and that they learn that practice time is something to be welcomed, not dreaded. I'm really thankful for the lessons I've had, not that it will motivate my children at all. But at least I won't wonder if it's really necessary to encourage practice; I know it is, and that's what I'll practice while I preach it.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Pickles

If you have ever wondered where the name, "Peterson Pickle Jar," was born, here is the explanation. Petersons love pickles. I learned this when our daughter was given her first pickle by her Peterson grandparents during a camping trip. She was around two years old, and she loved the pickle. Petersons traditionally serve pickles with holiday dinners and with every day lunch-time sandwiches. Grandma Peterson pickled her own pickles, onions and cucumbers. We always have a jar in the fridge and bust out the pickles now and then. I like dill pickles just fine, but Petersons can make a whole snack or side dish out of them. Jenna proved to be a Peterson in her own right, and both girls have gone through their "favorite" kinds over the years (always Clausen's, but varied between spears, baby dills, etc.). Recently, the favorite has been the sandwich slices (why? I don't know), and my girls get a bowl and a fork and fish out anywhere from 3 to 5 pickles at a time as a snack. Now that is pure pickle love for these Petersons. I've had to keep several jars in the fridge as the two gals can down a jar in one or two sittings. I'm not sure it's a healthy snack, but they certainly enjoy themselves while crunching down their pickles. By the way, if you ever want a really yummy, huge dill pickle, Disneyland has the best oversized pickles of the ones we've tried. Take it from the Peterson girls. They are pickle experts.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Creating - FHE Rotation Chart

Lots of good creating happening this week when I should probably have been doing dishes. Oh well. When the mood struck, I went with it. I made this 4-family member Family Home Evening rotation chart which I've had sketched out for a year or two. Most of the premade ones allow for larger families, and I don't really care for the ones we've tried. I'm excited to try this one. We put our names in different fonts to make it fun. Jenna wanted bubble letters, but the only puffy ones we found made her name look like Jenno. So we went with the puffy cow letters even though the E isn't perfect. We did Heather's in "Herculaneum" marking her Greek/Roman mythology vibe. I laminated everything at the copy store with the heavy duty lamination sheets. The names are attached with squared of sticky back Velcro.

I've also put together Conference binders for the girls and made Bingo cards to use during Conference this weekend. I'll post those later. Need to go finish decorating for Easter.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sick Girls - Update

The girls are getting better...slowly. Both missed the Cast Party on Friday, Jenna missed soccer on Saturday (doctor's orders) and both missed church today. I've had this feeling that they need not return to their activities too quickly. We have been fortunate that the majority of our illnesses are better within a day or two of missing school (sometimes attached to a weekend). These two cases of illnesses have been different. Heather has had bad headaches, coughing that keeps her awake at all hours and lots of nasal congestion. Jenna's chest sounds better, but her coloring, dark circles under her eyes, extreme nasal congestion and coughing persist. Both of the girls have more energy than they've had the entire week put together, but they are not back to 100% just yet. Heather will return to school tomorrow with some minor irritations (needing a tissue frequently and maybe some coughing), but Jenna is going to be home at least during the morning. I want to check in with the doctor before sending her back.

Many mother's have wondered and marveled about mother's intuition. When I became a mother, I felt a connection with Heavenly Father that amazed and comforted me, and I figured out early on that this must be what mother's intuition was all about. This week caused me to reflect again that in His wisdom, Heavenly Father doesn't charge us with the important task of parenthood and not accompany that charge with Divine help. If we seek and listen, He is there for us as week make decisions for our children. Amid my worry this week about school missed, homework piling up and what kind of letter the school office might send me because my children were absent, I have felt peace, reassurance and a sense of what the best path is to be on for each of my girls. I have had an overwhelming sense that I need to slow down, worry less and allow the girls to recover fully. I am so thankful for this Divine assistance and simply want to document this here.

As always, thanks for listening.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Hunger Games


It's 3:30AM and I'm blogging. There are about 15 more minutes until Kelly's alarm goes off, and both of my recovering children are occupying our only couches, so what's a girl to do? Well, okay, yes--most girls would be asleep. However, in my attempt to live my second childhood to it's fullest, I've just returned from a midnight showing of The Hunger Games. My brief review is as follows...

If you haven't read the book, read it first. The book has the detail and development a movie can never quite achieve. After you've read the book, seeing this movie will not disappoint. It was mild compared to what I expected, but the horrific nature of the games was well-conveyed by the actors. The acting was impressive.

Here are a few poor quality pictures from our event...
When we checked in we were assigned to "District 4"

Some of the girls dressed in character--Sarah dressed as Effie. I dressed as a tired mom of two sick children--oversized sweater, comfy pants and my hiking shoes. I appear to look as tired as my outfit.

After movie, cleanup and good-byes, it was a bit late. Or early.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sick, Sick, Sick



Heather woke up with a fever this morning. She's been stuffed up for over a week and has asked for decongestant almost every night this past week so she could sleep. I was pretty sure she had a sinus infection, and I was able to get her an appointment with our pediatrician. When Jenna woke up sounding croaky, I had a feeling I should take her in as well even though she was still on an antibiotic. Yesterday, Jenna had complained that her chest hurt while running at school. So, I called back and added her to been seen with Heather. I figured it couldn't hurt. I was glad I had the double appointment when Jenna woke up from a late morning nap with a fever.

We learned that Heather has a sinus infection (which I had guessed) and Jenna was far sicker than I thought. She has Respiratory Airway Disease which is essentially essentially something that got into her lungs while she was trying to recover from her sinus issues these past two weeks (I'm sure playing soccer in the cold rain on Saturday didn't help). After an in-office breathing treatment, she still had wheezing in her right lung. She is now on a new antibiotic, a steroid, a nasal spray and a breathing treatment every four hours. She is also to avoid physical exercise for 7 - 10 days which rules out soccer for this weekend. Poor girls!

Now if I can keep the threats to send us to the School Attendance Review Board away, we'll be okay. We've had a lot of random illness this year with Jenna and have already received a list of all the days she has missed. Hopefully both girls will be recovering in the next day or two.

Off I go to grab some more tissues and Gatorade. Keep us in your thoughts.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Show Is Over!

Our big show is over, and we're packing up. We've turned in our costumes and are turning our attention to putting everything away at home. It has been a fun few weeks, and we have strengthened friendships and made new ones. That is one of my favorite things about our shows--we meet new people in the Stake that we may never have crossed paths with otherwise. My second favorite thing is sharing what we've worked on with friends. We definitely have some great memories to keep! And I must add, because this is our FAMILY blog, that Kelly made all things possible with his sound engineering genius. He worked long, long hours so that our show would have the best sound possible, and he did an INCREDIBLE job!

Grace, Madi and Heather in their "Walking on Sunshine" costumes

Heather and her fellow zombies in their "Ghostbuster" costumes

Millay, Grace, Madi, Heather and Carlin in "Proud Mary"

Jaelyn, Sarah, Sydney, Cashel and Jenna in their "Fun, Fun, Fun" costumes

Sarah, Jenna and Toto backstage in their "Munchkinland" costumes

Jenna and Sarah were also in the "Every Girl Can Be A Princess" number (not pictured)

I performed in "It's A Small World," and I choreographed "Every Girl Can Be A Princess," "I've Got A Dream" from Tangled, and "Ghostbusters" (with my friend, Tricia).

Grandpa, Angie and Daisy

The Petersons and Hansons

My friend, Sarah, and two of her children

The Valenzuelas

The Moshers and Kellers

Rainy Day Soccer

As we left for Jenna's 11:00AM soccer game, the rain began to come down in sheets and was driven hard by the wind. They don't cancel soccer unless the field is unplayable, so we grabbed our huge umbrella, hats and weather proof outerwear. Jenna wore her dry sweatshirt underneath her jersey (no jackets allowed over the jerseys), but she had to remove her beanie before playing. The girls were soaking wet and shivering, but at least the running warmed them up. My pants were soaked even though I was underneath the umbrella. The wind was blowing so hard that you can hear it in the video below. Jenna scored 2 goals and her team won 6 - 0. Our team mom made a run to 7-11 for hot cocoa which was a great treat for our soggy team.


video

Friday, March 16, 2012

It's Friday!


Even though I haven't had a job outside the home for 12 years, I still LOVE Fridays. No homework, no worry about bedtimes and no setting the alarm clock for 6AM. It's just an awesome day. I thought it would be fun to look at our week and pick my top 5 moments. Here they are in no particular order:

#1 Heather got her second A on a math test
#2 Jenna found her acting chops and delighted us in her show numbers
#3 Antibiotics, gotta love 'em
#4 Watching our show come together and how much fun the cast members are having
#5 Sunny, beautiful days with temperatures in the mid 60's

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Scenes from "On The Road"

I took the camera tonight and tried to shoot some of our girls' numbers. Most photos were blurry due to low light and no flash, but here are a few that give an idea of what we've been up to...

Heather sings a small group part in "Walking On Sunshine" decked out in her 80's garb

Jenna dancing in "Fun, Fun, Fun" by the Beach Boys

Rapunzle's hair, final product (we braided it HERE)

Our dog, Winston, stars at Toto in "Munchkinland"

Jenna and her friend, Sarah, are Muchkins seated to the right of Glinda

My friend, Trish, and I choreographed the zombies for "Ghostbusters"
Heather is in the center of the pic with the veil over her face. The 12-13-year-olds say this is their favorite number. I'm sure the make-up was huge in the fun factor.

Heather's History teacher, Mrs. Hogrebe, came to the show with her husband. Several teachers were in the audience last night, and the kids were so excited to show off what they've been up to.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Apples and Inspiration

While washing some apples this morning and setting them to dry in the light of my kitchen window, I was inspired to photograph them. My brilliant sister would have made these look scrumptious. My photos turned out a little dark even though I think I had the settings correct. Although they were nice pictures, I nearly gave up on them until I enhanced them with a little bit of extra light. What a difference.

I'm reflecting a lot on extra light today. I'm nearly finished with Stephanie Nielson's story about surviving the horrific airplane crash she and her husband were in, and on my morning walk I listened to Elder Patrick Kearon's BYU Devotional from Valentine's Day. I think I've listened to it at least 4 times. I am craving a little extra light and realizing that I have been keeping the blinds closed. I'm not sure why the simple task of opening those blinds alludes me on a day-to-day basis. When the reminder comes to pray I often think that I'll do it in a minute, and then I forget. I can't afford to forget. Elder Kearon's talk can be heard HERE. The subject is non-denominational and is about communication with our Father in Heaven. If you have an iPhone or iPad, the BYU app is free and the devotional is on there to listen to.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Things That Matter Most

I pinned this last night from a favorite blog, Dreamland, and it got a ton of hits within minutes of the pin. It must be a message that speaks to our souls.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Law & Order - A Play

In the midst of a crazy rehearsal schedule for our church show, we were able to hop in the car and zip over to see our dear friend, Daisy, perform in a community theater production called Law and Order. It involved the Big Bad Wolf on trial, many fairytale witnesses, and Daisy starring as Rumpelstiltskin, the prosecutor. Very fun show and Daisy did a great job!

Snow at the Beach

Grandpa Ron has been visiting frequently, and this time he brought some snow from our recent storm. My first thought was, "Oh how fun!" followed by, "We don't have time for this, but we've got to make it work." We called the Holbrooks on our way home from school, and even though we were an hour away from our rehearsals, they met us in our front yard for a snowball fight! It was so fun, and we were proud of ourselves for making the time to do it. Normally we'd see Grandpa in these photos, but he was smart to stay out of the way. Sister Holbrook wasn't so lucky! We even caught our other friend Rachel walking home from high school. It's been a few snowball fights since she's joined in the fun. We are so lucky to have such fun friends!

Leapin' Lunch

We didn't have any special plans for this particular leap day, but Jenna and I did enjoy lunch together at Lunch on the Lawn. It's always fun to picnic with a special lunch and enjoy extra friend time.