Sunday, September 28, 2008

Like Father, Like Son

We are, and always have been a Star Wars obsessed family.  I have adopted these feelings since marriage but The Hub is life time fan.  

Nearly twenty five years ago,  my Mother-in-law donated The Hub's supply of SW action figures and battleships to the Deseret Industries.  To this day - there are some deep seated feelings of resentment over this act of donation.  To try and heal the wounds, when we were first married, I started hunting for SW action figures and gave them to The Hub for birthdays and Christmas.  They were difficult to find at the time because it was before the re-release of the Trilogy and the completion of the Prequels.  Upon recieving them, The Hub opened the figures and set them out lovingly on a shelf in our bedroom.  He now regrets opening the packages and the action figures are in a sealed container hidden in the closet (the kids are allowed to look at them whilst supervised).  We also have an adult sized Vader mask/voice simulator in the closet, and just yesterday 'M' mentioned that he really wanted to get this $200.00 light saber that comes with a special stand for display purposes.  

We once owned the Star Wars Trivial Pursuit Game but The Hub gave it to his brother because he felt like owning it make him too much of a nerd.  Let's be honest - a person who excitedly purchases the game and effectively slaughters all competition with his vast store of knowledge gained from not just watching the shows but reading the literature - has achieved ground breaking SW nerd status - regardless of weather they keep the game or not.
As I said, we are all big fans, but 'N' actually outpaces 'M' in his devotion to the galaxy.  Starting at the age of one, he could always be calmed if I quietly hummed any of the Star Wars theme songs in his ear.  In fact, because 'N' has been on hyper-active hyper-drive since birth, I have spent many hours over the past decade humming, and da-da-dumming this musical score.  For three years I did not hear a word from the stand during sacrament meeting at church on Sundays because through the force I had to pin 'N's arms to his sides, crushing him against my chest, as I lured him to complacency with my well rehearsed, renditions of 'Luke's theme', 'The Rebel Fanfare', or my personal favorite - 'The Imperial March'.  

Over time - other audio-visual passions have 'forced' SW from the limelight of 'N's life - Buzz Lightyear, Batman, Spiderman, Pirates of the Caribbean - but still - the love for the Star Wars Saga remains persistant and strong.   I don't have to hum so much anymore - he does that all by himself - but a frequent topic of discussion in my home is 'Jedi Training School' at Disneyland. We discuss how it went, the techniques the boys learned, the costumes they wore, and when we might be able to attend again. 

The Hub recently added a special download to his iphone.  It is a magical program which plays Star Wars theme music.  This music accompanies the simulated light saber sound effects which are activated when the user swishes his phone around the air with his best Jedi moves.  

Said The Hub cheerfully to 'N' this morning:

"You can try this but if you drop my phone I will have to beat you!"

To which I replied:

"Honey - maybe any activites you plan with the kids that involve the words 'I will have to beat you' are not appropriate."

All three kids had a grand time swishing the phone to beat of 'The Imperial March' and no one dropped the phone.  

No beatings today - May The Force Be With You!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Christmas Card Freebie?

Every year coming up with Christmas Card ideas is a struggle for me because I like to design things on my own but I am a procrastinator by nature.  I ALWAYS save the cards for the last minute, resulting in my mailing them out on about the 20th of December.  This is why I am THRILLED to have discovered an offer for a Free Christmas Card design!  

If you live in Utah and are in need a new family photos check out Jack and Jill Photography! The photography and prices are both amazing!  

Friday, September 26, 2008

My Buddy

Because I unintentionally birthed my first 2 babies just over one year apart, child number three is further in age from his older siblings. While 'A' became a big sis at the age of 1 year, 1 month, and 12 days - 'N' did not become a big brother until the age of 4 years and 4 months. 'Z' will not ever become a big brother despite his periodic questions and comments like: "when are you going to get another baby in your belly?" or "When another baby gets in your belly you will be a big fat Mom - so I won't sit on your lap!" and "When we get another baby do I have share my blankie - because I will hate that baby!". 

My little guy will turn 5 next month - and because 'N' started school 4 years ago - 'Z' has been my solitary buddy and side-kick for nearly his entire life. He still has one more year until Kindergarten but is busy this year with preschool.  
While dropping him off at preschool gives me the selfish pleasure of a few child free hours - I am phasing into a new time of life - which is bittersweet. 
Next year I will wave goodbye to my little buddy as he leaves on the school bus with his 4th grade Big Bro.  Sis will be in middle school then, which another crazy phase all together!

So - this school year I will commit to having fun with my baby. Except I will not publicly call him that as he as told me "don't call me cute things - because it is so much embarrassing!" 

This year is the end of being a mom with little kids.....which brings on mixed emotions - 
do I sigh wistfully, 
shed a few tears, 
or start planning a rockin' PARTY!?

Helping me attach new knobs to the kitchen cabinets.

Does this child:
A: have confusion with the terms 'under' and 'on'
B: misunderstand the proper use of a lawn chair
C: suffer from exhaustion during the final leg of soccer games

Showing off his sense of style - flip flops, summer p.j.'s, 
and a winter coat to combat the mild rain.
This kid goes after a slice of watermelon the way that I dig into a pan of warm brownies!

                                            Hmmmmmm - I have no words for this one.......

                                                   JUST GOTTA LOVE HIM!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Like Mother Like Daughter - OR - Blast From My Past

During the summer of 1989 I was in between 8th and 9th grades when my family decided to take a cross country road trip so that we could participate in the Hill Cumorah Pageant.

Because I was fourteen, I had a wee bit o' attitude. Because it was the eighties, I also had a strange sense of fashion.

My trademark attitude was incredibly-uninterested-in-family-togetherness. My trademark look included a small braid going down one side of my head that was secured at the bottom with plastic pony beads and a bandanna which I rolled up and tied around my ankle. (See picture below of disinterested lounging teen with blue bandanna.)

Too bad I don't have the pic of me (and my bandanna) sitting on the sidewalk in Williamsburg, Virginia giving my photographer/Dad a look that would have landed me in my room if we had been home.

Recently I was showing 'A' my photo albums from The Hill Cumorah Pageant. She noticed my special use of the bandanna and said:

"Oh! That is SO cool! I think you have some bandanna's - can I use them to do that?"

I agreed because let's face it - I did look incredibly cool and only a very cruel mother would deprive her pre-teen daughter of this neat-o fashion oportunity.

She hasn't executed this stellar look yet but this morning she asked me to try something new with her hair. She requested a small braid on one side - secured with plastic pony beads at the bottom (she has never seen photos of me with this 'do' and I have never told her about it)! Lucky for her I have maintained my tiny-braid-pony-bead skill set, and I have many bandanas in wide array of colors as I use them to 'Aunt Jamima" my super short hair at the gym! Lucky for me she seems to have inherited my past sense of fashion, but thus far there is no indication of my past attitude.

(I will post a photo of her hair do after school - and maybe I will let her use my pink bandana as well!)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

General Update and A Parental Check List For Next Weeks Soccer Marathon

Before school started we spent a day in Baltimore. This was a sloppy second for the kids as we had planned on going to Busch Gardens but we had to call the 'game' on account of rain. We spent time at the Harbor, had seafood, went the the National Aquarium, and did a drive by of Charm City Cakes (for those of your familiar with Ace of Cakes).

Shopping for school necessities and supplies is becoming as expensive an event as Christmas! Thank goodness we have a great Outlet Mall in nearby Leesburg! My Dad was definitely right - it costs a lot to keep kids in shoes!

'N' and 'A' looked great for their first day back at school (3rd and 5th grade respectively). I still have one more year to hang out with 'Z' as his 5th b-day isn't until October - he is looking forward to the start of preschool and is the envy of his big bro and sis as he is still allowed to sleep in!

My friend and I went to a slammin' rally for McCain and my girl - Sarah Palin. I LOVE her - and so, by extension - I think that McCain is pretty okay too. I have much to say on the topic of our upcoming election and the suitability of the primary candidates - but that song and dance will have to wait for another post. (better photos coming soon)

Next week during our three hour stint at the soccer field I will bring the following:
1. A beach umbrella for shade
2. A cooler filled with ice, fruit, and many COLD drinks
3. Chairs for all five family members
4. Sunblock
5. A blanket to spread on the ground
6. Lunch
(I would add a battery operated fan but such a purchase would break my new goal of only buying things that are on my 'need' list)
Next week I will not:
1. Let my self nor any of my children get a sunburn
2. Have nothing to sit on but a blanket
3. Have nothing to drink but HOT water by the second hour
4. Mooch a chair off of my neighbors
5. Have three hungry, hot and tired kids

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Flesh Eating Bacteria Strikes Again!

Over the summer my Dad contracted a case of cellulitis. If you do not care to read the oh-so-scholarly wikipedia article I have provided as a link, know that it is an infection of the deep subcutaneous tissue of the skin caused by an invading bacteria. This is a condition that is treated quite seriously as if it goes untreated it can turn into Flesh Eating Bacteria! After several trips to the doctor, and the emergency room, I am pleased to report that my Dad recovered 100%.

Fast forward to last week, which was the first week of school for the kids. 'A' got a nasty looking spider bite behind her ear. Gradually, it began to bother her and after a few days her complaints of discomfort increased and the bite became raised, lumpy, (and pretty gross) so I took her into the doc. Though the bite looked awful, the doc (and the three others who were brought in to confer over her condition) was very concerned over a slightly reddened circle that was spreading around the bite, onto her neck and face. (This reddening was not present when I sent her to school that morning.) And what was the diagnosis? Cellulitis by spider bite!

Now she is on heavy antibiotics and is feeling fine. Poor girl!Let no one say that the Thornton's are not doing their part to wage war against Flesh Eating Bacteria!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

What Did I Do Today?

-Woke up at 6:30 to get the kids ready and out the door by 7:20
-Made 10 PTA posters for the Reflections Program to advertise an upcoming open house that I am in charge of
-Strategically placed said posters around the school
-Could not leave the school due to a fire drill that forced me and Z outside for 20 mins
-Went to the gym
-Made some returns to Target
-Met with my counterpart and planned two months of cub scout den meetings
-Homework with kids
-Piano practicing with kids
-Coached A's soccer team
-Coached N's soccer team
-Went to Back to School Night

(oh yeah, and made breakfast, scoured the kitchen, packed lunches, entertained Z, made more lunches, entertained Z some more, moped the floors, did a few loads of laundry, made dinner, put kids to bed......)

WHEW! Maybe I will run for V.P. of the United States in my spare time!