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Arissa is so funny. She has totally picked up Jesse's sense of humor (I don't know if that's good or bad). I'm sure she must be the only 7 year old who loves to watch Seinfeld over and over and over AND finds it just as hilarious as Jesse & I do.

Last night she and Jesse were messing around w/ each other, and she said to him "speak to the booty cause the hand's off duty", which was something she must have heard on t.v. but who knew she'd remembered it and was saving it to use on her daddy at just the right time. :o)

Tuesday she went to the dentist, and got braces. Well they're not exactly braces, but it's a big metal retainer thing and it's supposed to widen her upper jaw to fix her bite. We have to tighten it (or "widen" it actually) twice a day for 2 weeks, then she has to wear some appliance 14 hrs a day for a year or so. Aside from the twice a day tightening, the thing doesn't seem to bother her...I think she thinks it's kind of cool. But I feel bad because I'm not sure if the kids at school will think it's as cool. I hope it doesn't make her feel self-concious.

And lastly, tomorrow is Drill Team tryouts. So if you happen to remember, say a little prayer for sweet Arissa. I'm sure I'm more nervous than she is. If she doesn't make it, things will be might even be for the better because like I said before, I'm not sure if she's ready for the hard work that will be entailed if she does make it. But since it's something she wants, I want her to make it and have fun and love it. Arissa tends to sometimes do less than her best when put on the spot....I guess so if she's critisized, she doesn't have to feel bad because she wasn't really trying her hardest. I think I'm like that too. So my prayer for her will be that she 1) has fun no matter what 2) tries her best 3) doesn't dwell if she makes a mistake or doesn't make it. But I do know Arissa is the best one in the drill team she's in I'm pretty sure I'll have good news to report next time I post!

Soooo cute!

I have some SUPER cute pictures to post....

but I have to restrain myself because I'm sending out announcements w/ the pictures on them and I don't want to spoil them!

Mariah is graduating preschool in 2 weeks, and she is so excited. When Arissa graduated preschool, I took the cutest pictures of her in her little cap & gown....she was in front of the church/school, it was just about sunset so the lighting was really good, I rolled up a piece of paper to be her "diploma", and I had her jump up and down excitedly while I snapped some pictures. I got a really good, clear one of her mid-jump. And I made cards to send out the picture with, and the quote I used for them was "Excellence is not a skill, it's an attitude", or something to that effect. The cards were simple, just pink cardstock w/ a ribbon tied around, and Arissa's cap & gown were pink so it matched nicely.

I wanted to do the same for I bought all the supplies to make the cards, I got a good quote off the internet, and yesterday we got her cap & gown so we headed to the preschool @ 7:30 after dance rehearsal to take the pictures. Mariah is so happy to graduate preschool and move on to kindergarten, and it totally came through in the pictures. She looked so old, I saw a glimpse of what she'll look like as a teenager/adult. She's too cute and sweet. Here's the sneak peek:

I had a teacher conference w/ her teacher Ms. Erin today, and it was nice to hear that she recoginizes what a sweetheart Mariah is too. She told me she's smart, of course....she knows her letters, numbers, etc etc, beyond the requirements. But she is also the best listener in the class, the most helpful, the most kind, the one to notice when other kids are hurt or sad and try to make them happy. That was pretty much the exact same thing Arissa's preschool teacher had said to me about her. Gotta love that.

our weekend

What a busy weekend we had! Saturday was Mariah & Mallory's birthday party. Despite the fact that it was horribly hot, they had a great time. Several kids from each of their classes came, plus our 2 neighbor friends, a family friend, and family. We played a game (which Arissa won), ate lunch, made a craft, had cupcakes, and opened presents. The girls got such great was as if they had each written out a wish-list and mailed it w/ the invitations....they got exactly what they liked and wanted. To make sure Arissa didn't feel too left out, Jesse & I got her a present, and so did my dad.

You know Mallory likes her gift when she makes this face:
Mariah, with her money ("one dollar" as she calls it) from Grandpa:

"I can't even beLIEVE it!":

Arissa helped her sisters by reading their cards:

Lunch is served (pizza & lemonade):

The craft. Each kid decorated their own goody bag to take home. We painted the front of the bags w/ glue, and the kids put on pieces of tissue paper:

The cupcakes! I stayed up till 11:30 on friday night making these. I made the frosting from scratch & topped off the cupcakes w/ paper hydrangea petals:

So the party was a success. The next day, Mallory & Mariah went to a birthday party for one of the girls that had come to THEIR party. After church they went to Boomers, and were there for about 3 hours. When they got home, Mallory felt REALLY warm. I thought it must just be because they had been outside, since it was so very hot. But then she layed down and was very not herself....she was very fatigued, didn't want to eat or drink or play. She would nap, then wake up, then nap, then wake up, and one time after waking she seemed really confused and disoriented and it scared us. I called the dr because I thought she might have heat exhaustion. I called the dr and they said take her to ER. I said even though she seems better? Can't it wait until the morning? They said take her to the ER. I said even though she's sleeping peacfully now? They said take her to the ER. So at 10:30pm, Jesse & I dropped off Arissa & Mariah & my grandmas, and took Mallory to the hospital. Every nurse and employee we came into contact w/ the whole night was very very nice and sweet to her. When offered stickers for being so good, Mallory declined the several choices they gave her and kept repeating that she wanted "Princess sticker. Ariel. The little MERMAID.". So the nurse searched their whole supply and finally found Mallory some Ariel stickers.

They gave her some motrin, which finally brought down the 102 degree fever. Then the dr ordered a urine test & chest x-ray (to rule our pneumonia). The chest x-ray was fine, I told Mallory they were taking a picture so smile pretty, and she sure did. The urine part, was not so fun, since they had to get the sample via a cathedar. But all in all, she did great. I was prepared for ear piercing screams and though she did cry, her volume wasn't what I was expecting.

At about 1am, she came back "to life". She was talking, laughing, playing...sliding across the hospital floor in her socks. We sat in the Emergency Room until FOUR THIRTY AM, when they told us she had a urinary tract infection, prescribed some medicine, and sent us home. Today she still has a slight fever, but she feels much better.

This is her at the start of the party for her little friend:

And this is her by the end. You see what I mean, she wasn't herself at all:

And lastly, Arissa's Hummingbird project was due today. While the girls were at the party sunday, Arissa & I worked on her hummingbird model and habitat. During the process, I dripped hotglue all over my hand, and ended up w/ what I'm sure must be a 2nd degree 1 inch long burn on my thumb (and a smaller one on my middle finger). It blistered up and hurt so bad I thought I was going to throw up. I held it under cool running water for 10 minutes, crying the whole time. Today it feels much better. Poor Arissa felt so bad for me...and she refuses to ever use the hotglue gun again. :O)

Mallory's Birthday, Flowers, Mother's Day Gifts, & Swim Class Last Night

Mallory's birthday was a busy day....she and Mariah had went to preschool, which was good because I was able to send cupcakes and the class celebrated her special day. Then she came home and opened gifts real quick, then we were off to their Preschool Open House. We got to meet lots of their little friends and their parents, and see what they've been doing this year. It was fun. Here's the three sister's:
This is Mallory opening the gift from Jesse and I....Mariposa Barbie w/ glitter wings. As you can sort of see from the picture, she was overjoyed and amazed.

And this too, made her scream w/ excitement. Barbie Mariposa movie. (This was from her sisters)

This is Mallory & Mariah letting everyone know that until June 6, they are "twins" (cause they're both 4 yrs old).

When you see this picture, you should be able to understand why I spend as much time as possible in our yard tending to my flowers. Have you ever seen anything so beautiful? Now these are blue (they look purple cause they just bloomed) and because of the content of our soil/water, any hydrangeas I've bought in the past always turn pink. But for now, these are SO making me happy.

This is a bloom off my 5 year old hydrangea bush. These little guys are such amazing growers...they are lush and green and beautiful.

These are the cards & gifts we gave for mother's day....a poem on the card w/ some glitter added by the girls, and a cd w/ a few cute little songs performed by the girls, produced by Jesse and I. We have a recording program on our computer, and Jesse has been acquiring recording equipment, so we are able to edit and add effects and it's pretty amazing. Here's a link to one of the songs:

And these are the picture's from swim class yesterday. It was an especially fun class. First off, 7:00 pm in the summertime is a nice time to swim. It was warm but the breeze was cool, the water is warmed like always, and the light wasn't blaring like it is at noon. Also there were water toys in the pool that have never been there on a saturday before.....slides, boats, etc. The girls were so excited as soon as we walked in. When they called their names though, Mariah was in a different group. They've always all 3 been together in all the previous classes (it's 3 students per instructor). The girls were so confused, they didn't understand that they could be seperated. When Mariah figured out where to go, Mallory tried to follow her, assuming that must be the group she's in too. But we got it straightened out, and it worked out well. Mariah was in a group w/ slightly younger kids...and that matched her "bravery" level a little better. Arissa & Mallory's teacher was able to push them along a little more. And Mariah preferred the teacher that she had in this new group too.
This is Arissa under the water for 4 counts!

Mariah & her new teacher:

The "twins":

Mallory spitting. (At least she's not drinking it like she tried before):

Mallory @ the "island" in the center of the pool:

Sweet Mariah made a new friend with whom she has something in common.....a love for Dora the Explorer (see how they both have the same one?). They formed a bond. :O)

Mallory, about to go under:

Mallory & Arissa...loving it:

I'm still here!

No I haven't forgotten about my blog....on the contrary, several times a week things happen that I can't wait to post and share pictures of. But our computer at home is so much slower than the one here at work, and the last time I tried to upload pictures, it took about an hour and then it failed at the end. And I haven't had the time, or more importantly the patience to try again!

Plus this is the busiest time of the year at our's "birthday season". Mallory turned 4 on May 8, Jesse turned 27 on May 11, Mariah will turn 5 on June 6, and Arissa will turn 8 on June 17. Plus there was Mother's Day. Plus I'm planning birthday parties. Plus Mariah is graduating from preschool. Plus this is a super special birthday for Arissa because once she's 8, she'll be baptized, and so I'm trying to plan for that as well.

Also, at drill team practice on Tuesday night, Arissa got an invitation to try out for the big drill team. The one that competes and does tours. She's very excited, and I am excited for her. I'm also a little weary for her, because I'm not sure she understands what a commitment it will be. They practice A LOT. And they're expected to do nothing less than their very best for the ENTIRE practice, every practice. And they march in parades....sometimes long parades, when you don't think your legs can carry you until the end. Arissa is good at drill though....she's the best in the class she's in now. And I know that should would be just as good in the big drill team. But she's only 7, soon to be 8, and I wonder if maybe it'll be too much for her. And once we sign up, we sign a contract for a year, which means if by the 3rd month she's drop dead tired and it isn't fun anymore, she can't quit because it'll mess up the whole group. But I don't want to be negative at all, and I'm not trying to be. I'm trying to be realistic. So I sat down and tried to explain as best I could, what a commitment it will be and that it's a lot of work, there are times when it's more work than it is fun. But she feels that she still wants it, so try-outs are May 30....and now I'm nervous for her. :O)

What else has been happening.....well I've been working on my garden quite a bit. Sometimes it seems silly to me, being as that we're just renting right now and someday I'll have to leave all my beautiful flowers and plants and hardwork for someone else to admire or change or neglect. BUt for now, my hydrangeas are beginning to bloom....and I feel so happy everytime I look at them. There's SO many buds about to bloom, it's incredible. It makes me proud too, because I've finally learned how to take care of them can only cut them at certain times if you want them to bloom the next season, for instance. Also, Jesse built a trellis out of wood, and my new Wisteria is rapdily climbing it. This week I noticed it surpassed the top of the trellis but had nowhere to go, so last night Jesse had to add on to the trellis so it can climb to the roof, and then soon we'll need to add something to the edging of the house so that it can climb around it.

This is Jesse building the trellis....and our sweet little neighbor friend Alex watching.

And every saturday for the past month the girls have been taking swimming lessons. It's so much fun to watch, they really enjoy it and it's so cute! It's funny how different they are though....Arissa, of course being the oldest, is really learning fast and at the last class she was able to swim a short distance w/o the teacher holding her. She also loves to jump off the side and swim back up. Arissa is very diligent and serious.

Mallory is a little daredevil....she's FALLEN into the water twice, and once was the very first time she got in, and she still loves it. She shows the most excitement, she's always smiling. She loves the water, and she also loves the toys they let her play with. She plays while she waiting for her turn to go out into the pool, and then to entice her to try going under the water, the teacher will toss her toy-du-jour out aways and then help Mallory "swim" to get it. And then there's sweet little girl. She enjoys it too.....when she's not terrified of it. She does NOT like going under the water, and a lot of the time she sits there and cries. Not wailing cries, just little sobs....she still wants to be in the water, and when her teacher asks her to try going under, she does, but most of the time her face looks like this:

See what I mean? I feel bad for Mariah but at the same time, how cute/hilarious is that face? I thouroughly enjoy the 1/2 hr I spend watching them swim every saturday.

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