Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Happy Birthday Keenan!

It's hard to believe it, but yesterday we celebrated Keenan's 4th birthday! He's such a joy to have in our family and everyday I'm grateful for the kind-hearted little boy he is. The time is going by so quickly, but it's really fun to watch him grow and develop over the years.

I had a cold and was feeling kind of crappy so I let Keenan decorate his own cake this year. It was really cute and he had fun. I think I'll actually give the boys the option to decorate their own cakes from now on. Keenan decided to draw Optimus Prime from the Transformers. So funny. He was so proud of his cake. And he should be. . . don't you think?

We had his party at Pizza Hut and despite some lack of preparedness and efficiency on their part, it was a really fun night. There were lots of friends and family to share Keenan's special night with him.

My dad and step-mom came; along with my step-sister, Kirsten; her husband, Adrian; and their son, Dominiq.

Tyrel's family also made the trip to celebrate with Keenan, including Dianne, Ralph, Erin, Taylor, Sage, and Tylee (and of course their baby brother who hitched a ride in Erin's belly.) ;)

There were also many of my close friends whose children have become friends with my boys. They included Aubrey Nebeker (no relation. Just a weird coincidence) and her girls, Zoe and Ruby; and TJ Faddis and her daughter, Shelby, and son, Casey. It was really nice to have everyone there.
Keenan said he had a really good birthday and I had fun sharing this special night with so many friends and family. We were only sad not to be able to spend the night with Tyrel, but we know how much he wanted to be there and he left a very cute video message for Keenan on his facebook page wishing him a happy birthday.
Happy Birthday my big 4-year old!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Just Catching Up

So I realize that it's been eight months since my last post. In my defense, I told everyone at the beginning that I'm terrible at keeping up with this kind of thing. But, a lot has happened since my last blog so I thought maybe I should catch up.
Of course, most of you will already know everything I am posting about by now, but since I plan to use this site as my journal (I'm even worse at journals than blogging) I'm going to include it all anyway. Read it or don't, it's up to you.

So, where to begin . . .

The car

Last may -I think it was memorial day weekend- we took our truck in to the dealership for a recall. We also brought the Sentra so we could go do stuff around the Murray area while we waited. Except, that never happened. Instead, I decided to "just look" at the Muranos that Tyrel had been trying to talk me into for a long time. The day ended by leaving our Sentra at the dealership and drving off in the nicest car I've ever had the privelage of driving. If you can feel lust for a car, I did. Is it terrible to be turned on more by your car than your husband? It had all the bells and whistles and then some.

Now fast forward to December OF THE SAME STINKING YEAR! It was the 12th of the month and Tyrel was, once again, working out of town. We had been invited to a Christmas party at one of my old high school friend's house in Brigham City. I was very excited because several of my old choir buddies who I hadn't seen since high school were going to be there. On that morning, I woke up and looked outside. The weather was nice, but I thought to myself, "I should check what the weather is going to do the rest of the day." But, being me, I lost that thought in the morning's chaos, trying to get my kids ready on time (which will never in my lifetime happen. I'm sure of it.) As we got into the car, later than I'd hoped yet again, I thought, "I really should go back in and check the weather conditions before we go." But, we were already leaving late so I ignored that little prompting.

On the way there, I kept thinking, "You should turn around. You're going to wreck."
But I still ignored it. "Puh-shaw!" I thought, "You're being paranoid."
Shortly after passing the Morgan area, the weather started looking a bit foreboding, but still nothing terrible. I slowed the car to about 10mph below the speed limit and continued on, even when I got the feeling that I needed to pull over at an exit and just wait for a half hour or so. But, I did call my sister-in-law, Lisa, to ask how the weather was through the canyon up to Logan. I had decided I probablt wasn't going to risk dropping off the Christmas presents to them on this trip. I would just go to the party in Brigham City and possibly stay the night. The presents could wait.

Very shortly after I called them to say I probably wasn't going to come, I passed the marker showing I was only 9 miles out of Brigham City. Suddenly, the roads got bad in a hurry. Honestly, I should have slowed down much sooner than I did, but I was stupidly determined to get to this party before the roads got too bad. I should have realized that they already were too bad. But before I could even think about it and adjust my speed, the car in front of me slammed on its brakes. I tried to stop, but just kept sliding forward. I quickly looked to my right to find the lane clear so I tried to swerve into it to miss the car. I think I did miss the car (but I really don't remember and it wasn't on the police report) but we slid off the road head-on into a concrete foundation for the port's sign (or whatever it was. It was big.)

The entire front of my car was smashed in through the fire wall. Every air bag in my car deployed. It kind of looked like the inside of a jumpy castle. I didn't even know there were that many air bags. But most importantly, I turned around to find my kids crying, but perfectly fine, except for a very minor cut on Keenan's chin. It was only after that that I realized that I hurt everywhere! We were transported via ambulance just in case and they did a lot of X rays, but in the end, we were very lucky (not to mentioned watched over) to have nothing more than a broken pinky and some bruises.

I had a lot of family members come to my rescue. Shane spent several hours at the hospital with my kids while I was in X ray. Then he took us to the airport the next morning to pick up Tyrel, whose job had flown him in after he found out. Erin came up from Woodruff to get us from there and take us all home. And even though I didn't end up needing them, I had several other family members who were packed and ready to come and get me and the boys within an hour after I wrecked. I am so lucky to have such an amazing family.

The fact that my children are alive and there are no major affects is the most important thing to me and I am grateful everday that we did not suffer more for my stubborness and refusal to listen to the promptings I had. HOWEVER, now that all is well and I can be thankful for my children, can I just say, "My car! My car! My beautiful car!" I had planned to grow old with it. I guess I'll have to settle for Tyrel. Dang my luck.

Summer Visitors

Okay, now rewind back to the summer before the accident. My mom was able to fly up from Phoenix for the 4th of July weekend. I was really excited because distance and finances have really limited my ability to see most of my family. It was only the third time my mom has been able to see my kids.

We had a great weekend! We started by going to the Zoo, but got rained out about a half-hour after we got there. It was quite a rain! My mom and I pushed the kids in the stroller up all the hills running all the way and we were completely soaked when we made it back to my car (my beautiful car). But, it was kind of funny and we laughed the whole way.

Then we just spent the weekend relaxing together. The boys and my mom and I made a holiday cake out of whipped cream, blueberries, and strawberries to look like the American flag. It was pretty cute and tasty. I think that will become a tradition for us. We enjoyed the 4th of July in the absolutely most amazing place to celebrate it. Evanston, Wyoming. I never would guess I would say anything like that about E town, honestly, with all the fireworks that just the normal citizens light off, compbined with the city's, it truly is the most spectacular 4th of July sky in the world (I have confirmation of this from two brothers in the military who have spent it all over the country.)

When the weekend was over, we were sad to see my mom go, but we were glad to have gotten the chance to see her again.

Later in the summer my little sister, Darbie who is the funniest person I know, (she's made me pee several times in the recent past. Really. I'm not ashamed to admit it) came up for a trip to Bear Lake. It was just her, me, and our kids who were all ages two and three. We thought it would be the best trip ever--a trip that would give our kids all the memories we had camping as kids. We were wrong.

Turns out, we hate camping when we are in charge. It's a whole crap load of work and not much relaxing. Plus, we were visited during the night by two skunks who were in love *wink *wink. I take full responsibility for that because it was my bright idea to leave the leftover dinner in the fireplace and burn it in the morning (hey, it was late and we were tired). So we provided the "lovers" with a romantic dinner and a private room (our fire pit) to "express their affection for one another." I've never heard what skunks sound like before, let alone what they sound like when they're "happy." Turns out, they sound a lot like an aroused man and his nagging wife. If Darbie and I hadn't had to pee so bad, it might have been funny, but we were stuck in our tent crossing our legs just waiting for them to leave so we could go to the bathroom. (I've kind of used the word "pee" a lot in one blog, huh?)

We ended up leaving one day early. I think the kids did have fun, though, which is important. We spent the next night at my house playing sleep over. It was really good to hang out with my sister again. We were kind of inseparable before I moved back to Wyoming.


That fall, Keenan started pre-school for the first time. He absolutely loves it! His teachers inform me that he is one of their favorites because he is smart and he always listens to their directions and is nice to all the kids. Go figure. I don't know what I'm doing wrong at home, but it's good to know he is capable of being good. No, I'm kidding. He really is a good kid and I'm very proud of him. I love seeing all the papers and drawings he brings home. His little brother gets excited too. He gets excited to drop him off and pick him up and see Keenan's papers and hear about the letter of the week. Draiman knows all of Keenans' teachers and classmates' names. It has been a really fun experience for everyone and it gives Draiman some one-on-one time with mommy, which he's never had before.


Next came Halloween. Keenan was Raphael, which was very convenient because we had the costume already (I made Tyrel wear it. It was funny.) Draiman was the black Spiderman. I got the smallest costume I could find and still had to hem the pants and shorten the sleeves. I didn't have to adjust the mask though, Nebeker heads are huge. ;) I was a witch and Tyrel was a bleeding-face skeleton thing. It was a fun night.

After Halloween was Thanksgiving at my mother-in-law's. I love getting together with Tyrel's family. It's always fun with lots of laughs . . . and Shane's dutch oven potatos and deep-fried turkey were amazing! Okay, Shane, even though I'm sure you get the joke, it really was great. I was pleasantly surprised by your potatoes and I would eat them again without hesitating. Of course, if my considerate husband had just kept his mouth shut about the fact that I normally don't like dutch oven potatoes, I wouldn't have to say anything, would I Tyrel?


Okay, so you already know how my Christmas started. With a bang, no pun intended . . . okay it was intended and really bad. But, after we recovered from the physical and financial injuries from the accident, we had a good holiday. We went to Rifle, CO to spend the week with my sister, Tuesday, and her family. The kids loved it and so did I. I love going places where the kids are constantly entertained by other kids. It's nice.

Tyrel cooked most of Christmas dinner with my sister, so naturally, it was delicious! I think my sister's kids aren't used to his kind of cooking, though. Sometimes he forgets to be "kid-friendly" and my kids are just so used to it that they wouldn't know what to do with a normal dinner. Well, that's not true. Since Tyrel works all the time, they are stuck with my cooking a lot. That means grilled cheese sandwiches and soup, mostly.

But, overall, it was a really nice Christmas. The kids were very happy with Santa and so were Tyrel and I.

The New Car

So having just totaled our car, we were in need of another. We both decided that although we liked the Murano (okay, I passionately adored it), it would be nice to not have the huge car payment that came with it. Plus, we didn't have the kind of down-payment for a new one that we'd used on the Murano. So, Tyrel found a really great '97 Ford Explorer. It's old, but was in unbelievably good condition. It only had 51K miles on it and used to be a company vehicle so it had all of its maintenance logs and had just been really well taken care of. With the little money we got back from insurance and some from our savings, we were able to buy it out-right, leaving us car payment-free. It's a nice feeling. Maybe nicer than the deep love I felt for the Murano. Kudos to Tyrel for finding it. He's really good to have around sometimes.

Valentine's Day

I absolutely have to blog about Valentine's day because it was sooooo surprising. We have never celebrated Valentine's Day in our entire relationship. Tyrel says it's because he loves me EVERYDAY, which is nice and I always agreed before we had kids. I didn't realize how important it would be to have a day to set aside just for you as a couple after your kids come along. But nonetheless, we've never done anything on this day. And we still didn't DO anything this year. But . . . he bought me a set of real pearls--necklace, bracelet, and earings! This is a really big deal because he not only doesn't do Valentine's Day, but he has sworn never to get me jewelry. Apparently I told him when we were first together not to bother because I just lose all my jewelry, but I have changed my mind since then and he has refused to adjust. So it was a really nice surprise.

And finally . . . The Piece de Resistance . . . The Vasectomy!

Okay, I debated whether or not to include this since it is kind of a personal decision and not something that everyone wants to hear about. But, it also embarasses my husband. When weighed out, the pleasure of doing so is greater than the disgust any of you may feel for reading about it.

We have been throwing around the idea for a long time and when I had some issues that forced me to forego our current method of birth control, we decided to finally bite the bullet and just get him snipped. We love our kids, but we know our limit. Not that we think everyone else's limit should be the same, but we know ours. We are content, the boys are content, and we, personally, don't have the patience for more kids. Plus, Tyrel would really like to eventually get a job that allows him to actually see his kids. If we have more, he'd be stuck in his job longer.

So, last Thursday I took my husband in to get fixed. What a freakin' easy process! I know, I know, I wasn't the one who had to do it. But, if child-birth were as easy as a 20 minute trip to the doctors office and you just left with a slight limp and the need for frozen peas between your legs for a couple of days, we probably would have had another kid already. I have a friend who thinks we should have the vasectomy reversed and then done again. That way, we'd be even. Two for me and two for him. I kinda like that idea . . .

So that's it. I think I am caught up with all the major events from the past eight months. Plus, I've just written a novel, which is an accomplishment I didn't know I would do in my life. I should include photos but then this blog would probably overload the blogspot site and no one could read it. Maybe I'll follow up with the pics to go with the stories in a few days. (I promise, no vasectomy photos though.) Hopefully, I'll keep up a little better now.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Colorado Dinosaur Museum

The boys and I spent the last weekend in Rifle, CO to visit my sister, Tuesdey (Don't be confused. That's her name--Tuesdey.) She has two boys that are also 14 months apart, although they are now 7 and 8, but she relates so much to my crazy life. My boys love hanging out with their older cousins and finally getting to do rough, crazy boy stuff. I loved having two older boys to entertain mine so that I could have an adult conversation and watch some movies without interuption.

While we were there, we went to Grand Junction and went to a dinosaur museum. They had so much fun! They still talk about it and ask when they can go again. When that was done, we went to Chuck E. Cheese's and then to the movie "UP." It was a really full day, but so worth it because the kids were really well behaved and Keenan actually thanked me for "letting us do this stuff." What a great weekend!

Here are some pics of the Dino Museum.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Holy Hair!

We've had quite a "hair-raising" week this week. (Pun completely intended.)

First, Tyrel has decided to sport a chicken-style mohawk. Every time he shaves his head he talks about it, but always shaves it off before the night is over. Well, this time it stayed. To my dismay, some tard at his job told him it is "awesome" and so now it is here to stay.

If that isn't bad enough, he convinced the boys that they wanted their hair like his. This backfired though. Keenan, so sure that he wanted hair like his dad's, got his cut into a mohawk. Unfortunately, his excitement only lasted until he actually saw himself in the mirror. At that point, he immediately burst into tears and sobbed, "I don't want it! Take it off!" So, we shaved his whole head. He was slightly more tolerant of this new look, but still a bit sensitive about being bald. Although we tell him how cool it looks (and so should any of you who see him) he really looks like a leukemia patient . . . or a little like the albino from "The Davinci Code."

Draiman also got a hair cut, but I am the only one sad about it. He is not bald, nor does he have a mohawk. But . . . I love, love, love his long surfer hair and I had just gotten it exactly how I like it. Unfortunately, with the warmer weather he was always complaining about being hot and his hair was constantly matted with sweat so I cut it short. I don't even get sad when I get my own hair cut off, but it was really hard watching his locks fall to the ground.

I'll post pictures of the new looks for all to view later.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Happy Birthday to Draiman!

I'm a little late posting this, but Draiman's 2nd birthday was on the 2nd of May. It's official. I no longer have any babies in my house. Now it is filled with the joys and constant noise and trouble of two little boys.

Draiman was a little sick so we didn't do anything big, but he had a good time anyway. As with all birthdays in our house, we started the day by making his cake. For months he has been asking for a Thomas the Train cake. I had even bought little cake toppers that would make it super easy. But . . . the day before his birthday he decided he really wanted a Spiderman cake. Good thing that's a super hero that I can actually draw! Despite the last minute change, it turned out okay and Draiman loved it (which is all that matters anyway).

That night we had a simple celebration with just our family at home. We had cake and ice cream and Draiman got to open his present from us.

The next evening the grandparents came over and, to his joy and wonderment, Draiman got to open more presents!

Thank you Grandma and Grandpa Spotten and Papa and Kelly for coming! Draiman loves his presents and it's always nice to have family so close to share times like this with us.

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Easter Bunny, The Dentist, and Mr. Fix-it

It's been awhile since we've posted so I thought I'd throw it all into one great big blog.

We had a great Easter. The kids had an Easter egg hunt at Grandma's house with all of their cousins on the Nebeker side. It was really cute watching them tromp around in the snow looking for eggs. As always, I was so impressed at how well the older kids take care of and help the little ones. What good kids are in this family. I always feel lucky to be a part of it.

The following Saturday, we took the boys to the anual Easter Egg "Chase" at the ball parks. The police department provides the event every year, filling 8,000 plastic eggs with candy and spreading them out on each of the four fields. The kids gather at their designated field, according to age range, and when the police siren sounds they all take off in a big, chaotic frenzie and gather eggs. It kind of resembles a hoard of locusts flying over a crop devastating everything in their path. It takes an hour to get everyone organized and ready and then it is over in about 2 minutes after the siren goes off, but the kids all love it.

Keenan didn't get very many eggs because he was too concerned about getting the pink and purple ones. That's my boy! Draiman only got some because Tyrel grabbed a couple for him. He was so excited by the kids running around like chickens with their heads cut off that he just ran and kept passing the eggs. Also, out of the hundreds of kids at the field that day, the newspaper asked if they could take his picture and it ended up on the front page! You can see his picture Here.

On Saturday night we dyed eggs. This was the first Easter since we've had the boys that Tyrel has been able to be home with us to dye eggs, so it was kind of special for our family. Draiman was too cute. Everytime we gave him a color, he piled every one of his eggs into it so they were stacked on top of each other. Some of the eggs didn't even touch the dye, and it overflowed onto the table!

Foolishly, I assumed that the boys would wake me up at the crack of dawn, as always to say that the sun was up, but instead, I woke up to the sound of little feet running around upstairs. (I'd like to note here that I've been trying without success for months to get the boys to go upstairs when they wake up in the mornings without waking me up and Keenan picks Easter to start.) So, I hurried and woke up Draiman and Tyrel and we went up to see their baskets and find the eggs that the Easter Bunny had hid. Then I made my traditional Easter breakfast quiche and took it over to my dad's to have breakfast with them. Tyrel got called in to work so we ended up spending the day there and had a barbeque that night with my brother and my dad and their families. It was a fun day and I'm grateful that we got to spend at least some of Easter with Tyrel this year.

The Dentist
Keenan went to the Mt. Ogden Surgical Center yesterday morning to have an insane amount of dental work done for a three year-old. We woke up bright and early (actually, it wasn't bright at all. It was 5am and snowing) and headed for South Ogden. They let me stay with him to get the "giggle gas" until he fell asleep and then I had to wait outside while they started the IV and did the procedure. He did not like the gas at all. The anesthesiologist said it smelled like giraffe feet and that's why they have such long necks. Keenan thought it was funny later that day, but not so much at the time. It all went really well and he came out with five fillings, one pulpectomy (the equivelant of a root canal, but on baby teeth), and three caps. He hacked and gagged a bit when he was recovering from the anesthesia, but he's been perfect since. No pain, but it's easy to tell he needs some time to get used to the caps. He licks them and moves his lips over them a lot. I think we'll be cutting back on the sugar in his diet, though.

Mr. Fix-it
I've been getting itchy to redecorate the house a bit and have been telling myself that now is not the time to spend money frivolously. So, I was secretly overjoyed when I could not get the walls in my bathroom clean and when I realized that the trim was pulling away from the wall, not to mention the fact that I've never been able to get them clean since we moved in. I decided that this was reason enough to paint and get new trim. I went to Wal-Mart and bought some paint (on sale, Tyrel, calm down) and painted the bathroom. I was going for a light, neutral brown tone, but it ended up being a bit "earthy." What I mean is that it looks like someone took a bucket of mud and very neatly spread it over my walls, but that's what you get when you buy bargain paint that was "mis-tinted." Nonetheless, my walls now look clean. Well . . . muddy, but there are no fingerprints and it did richen up the room a little.

I thought that with all of the brown it needed some white so I went and bought white trim. At this point, I had already painted the walls and bought the trim so Tyrel didn't argue. He just gave in, bought a mider box, and put up the trim for me. Now I don't know how many of you have ever experienced Tyrel's carpentry, but it is a bit . . . verbal. If something doesn't fit right, or look right, or nail right, words fly. I've learned to stay out of the room and just look in if I hear anything that sounded like something got thrown through the wall.

So, as Tyrel was in our tiny little bathroom swearing like a sailor, the boys and I were in the kitchen playing with play-do. It was a great teaching moment. The lesson? We never repeat anything we hear from daddy when he is building things. But, when it was all said and done, my bathroom was finished (except I have to touch up the ceiling where the paint seeped under the tape.) Everytime I go in, I decide that I like the brown a little more and I realized that muddy brown is the perfect color for a bathroom. It will hide anything (and I do mean anything) that two little boys can think of to smear on the wall. ;)

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Happy Birthday Keenan!

March 2nd was Keenan's 3rd birthday! I always thought it was silly that moms got so emotional at things like this, but I was a little sad to know that Keenan is officially a real kid. (As opposed to the fake kid that he used to be.)

It started off a week ahead of time when Tyrel took Keenan to a hockey game with Uncle Shane and Kalen. Keenan has decided that he wants to be a hockey player so this was really fun for him. You'll have to ask Tyrel about the details of their excursion. They didn't tell me much except that they had fun, that I will go watch Keenan play when he gets big, and that Uncle Shane gets a little crazy at hockey games.

Because of the crowding problem we had in our tiny house last year, we decided to have separate parties for friends/cousins in the area and for grandparents. The Saturday before Keenan's birthday, we went to McDonald's for the "kid party." Lots of cousins and friends showed up and I think they all had fun.

We had Spongebob and Patrick cupcakes that Keenan, Draiman, and I made and individual ice cream cups. It was super easy and I thought they turned out kinda' cute!

On Keenan's actual birthday he woke up to find his present from Tyrel and me-a brand new Spiderman bicycle! We took him out to an empty parking lot to let him ride it later that day. It was so cute watching him figure out the pedals because he got so excited when he could make it move by himself.

Then, Keenan and I made his Spongebob cake (something he'd been anticipating for at least six months). Spongebob didn't have any arms or legs, but it was exciting for a three-year old anyway.

We ended the festivities with a visit from both sets of grandparents and, much to Keenan's wonder and excitement, more presents! It's sad how quickly the years have passed since we brought him home, but we had fun celebrating with him anyway!