Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

We had a relaxing and enjoyable day before Christmas. We started the morning by cleaning the house and getting ready for Santa to come. Then, to kill some time, we watched all our old home movies of Christmas past. It was fun for the kids to see themselves and what Santa had brought each year. It brought back a lot of really good memories. The best part of the day was the blizzard that hit around noon and dumped at least 6 inches of snow in only an hour or two. So we put on all our snow gear and played and shoveled for a few hours. Then it was finally time to get ready to go to Grandma Miller's for the Christmas Eve party.
We had the best dinner of prime rib, salmon, and all the yummy sides. After dinner, we played Christmas music with my chimes and acted out the nativity, always one of my favorite traditions.
It was a wonderful evening spent with my family.
Upon arriving home, we read a few Christmas stories, put out cookies and milk for Santa and celery for the reindeer. This was the final pose in front of the tree before the boys went to bed. They had a hard time sleeping because they were so excited.

I think Mitchel understands that it is really Mom and Dad who puts out the presents, and I think Max knows it too, but they are so good to still go along with the "magic" and not ruin it for their younger brothers. I think all of us, including myself, don't want to let go of the idea of Santa. For me, he is as real now as he was when I was a kid. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

I'm still here

Wow! It has been a long time since I have blogged about my/our lives. I think it is because I have been posting more frequently on Facebook and I figure no one really reads this blog of mine anyway. Also, life has just been same old same old for a while and it hasn't seemed like there has been much to write about. Not to mention that it takes time to do this, and it just hasn't seemed that important to me lately. Instead of using my blog to help make my scrapbooks, I now make photo books at the end of each year to preserve our memories. I don't include any text in those books, so I don't feel the need to write everything down like I used to. I still love to read other people's blogs, but they don't seem to post very often either. I guess this is one fad that is fading.

Anyway, things at the Harker home have been going well over the last few months. No major changes and no bad news either, which is a good thing. School is going great for both the kids and me. We are loving our schedules and teachers and such. We had a fun Halloween and Thanksgiving and just put up the Christmas decorations today. All the boys got straight A's on their report cards for the first term. Miles is in the groove of preschool. Mike still works at Diamond Rental. I've ran a few races (a 10K and a half marathon) and was proud of my times on each. Other than that, it's just business as usually, ya know, laundry, cleaning, dishes, watching movies, grocery shopping, keeping everyone fed, reading, more laundry, working, working out, more laundry, more cleaning, etc.....

Life is good though and I wouldn't trade mine for anything!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Max is 9!

So cutie pie baseball star Max turned 9 at the beginning of September and I am just now getting around to blogging about it. Life is crazy! In the morning, he woke up to find a few gifts on the table. The big box is a Star Wars Lego set (did we really need another one of those??) And an Xbox game (did we really need another one of those either?) It's getting harder and harder to find good gifts for my boys.
 Then, before he headed off to school, his Mom gave him a healthy birthday breakfast of donuts and chocolate milk. Then she won the mother of the year award (NOT!) but Max was happy about it.
 That night, along with Tracy's family, we went to Crystal Hot Springs for an overnight camping trip. There was a deal on KSL for swimming and camping and that seemed like a good thing to do for Max's b-day. It actually was a lot of fun even though the camp ground was a dive and the bathrooms were yucky. We still loved roasting hot dogs and making smores.
 The fun part was swimming in their pools. They really were hot and they definitely had a lot of minerals in them. You didn't want to get the water in your mouth. It tasted all salty and minerally. It even turned parts of my pink swimsuit orange. But it was relaxing. Max and Mitchel payed extra so they could go down the waterslides (rip-off).
 (sorry if you are being blinded by all of our glowing whiteness!)
It was an interesting place, and I don't think we'll ever camp there again, but it was a fun adventure and a great way to celebrate Max's ninth birthday. Thanks for celebrating with us Wood family!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Miles goes to Preschool!

Since all the other kids got a first day of school post, Miles gets one too. He is a little young to start school (he just turned 3 this summer) but because of my work schedule, I thought his time would be better spent in an academic environment than at a babysitter's house all week. He was totally excited to start and go to school like his big brothers.

 These are his gang signs, so don't mess with Miles :)
So far, so good. He attends three days a week. Mike is responsible for dropping him off each morning. He also uses his lunch break to pick Miles up and bring him home since I don't get done teaching in time. Then I meet them at the house so Mike can go back to work. You can't imagine how grateful I am that Mike is willing and able to do this. Miles loves it too. As he likes to say, "Daddy is my buddy!"

Saturday, September 15, 2012

First Day of School

This was the first summer in a long time where I felt like we were able to really get in everything I wanted to do. This was probably because I didn't have to worry about YW camp or Youth Conference this year. So by the time the first day of school rolled around, I was actually ready and looking forward to it.
Mason - 1st Grade
 Mitchel- 6th Grade
 Max - 3rd Grade
 They were all excited to start too.
 Mrs. Beecher is a first year teacher. Mason told me that he thinks she is beautiful and really nice.
 Mitchel has Mrs. Parish. The sixth grade has an army theme, so all the teachers were camo on the first day. (I did too which you will see in a minute)
 Max has Mrs. Hagen. He is attending Fox Hills this year in their gifted magnet program. I will miss seeing him at school with us, but I think he will be very successful over there and put his genius mind to the test.
 And here I am on my first day of teaching. The first week I spent just helping out and testing students. I got my own 5th and 6th grade reading classes the second week.
It's going to be a great year and I'm looking forward to teaching and watching my kids learn great things!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

My Classroom - Before and After

This is what my classroom looked like at the beginning of August when I first went in.

This is what it looked like at the end of August after my Mom and I put up bulletin boards and got everything looking nice and cute.
 The place with the mountains is my reading center. Every time a student reads a book, they get a die-cut tree to put up with their name and the name of the book they read.
 If you were a student in my class, this is the view you would be seeing most of the time.
 My desk.
 My birthday bulletin board. On your birthday you get to use one of the M&M dispensers to get a handful of M&M's.
 I'm ready to go. I can't wait to meet my 5th and 6th graders. I feel like I have done everything I can to prepare for them. I feel so blessed that I got this job. I'm looking forward to an awesome year!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

August Adventures

More fun than ever was had by the Harkers in August. When summer starts to wind down, I try to kick it into high gear and get in as much togetherness and fun as I can.
We spent a day swimming at Murray Pool with some of my friends and their kids. Look at my little fish!

I worked with Julie and Kristen in YW and miss seeing them and talking to them, so this was a fun day to be together and catch up.
We visited the Herriman Beach again with some moms from my ward. Really great to get to know them better and soak up the sun.

The other moms had to leave, but the boys and I stayed for a while longer to be silly and just hang out together.
Back in January, we had promised Mitchel if he did all the right things in school until the end of the year, we would take him to Lagoon. I had won two free tickets off the radio and our neighbor gave us some discount passes, so we finally went. It was a blast to see my kids so excited about the rides. I must be getting older, because my head couldn't handle any of the spinning rides.

It was a really hot day, so getting soaked on the Rattle Snake Rapids as one of our first rides was a good idea.
We all braved "Wicked," even Mason!
I have continued to get up at 5:00 each morning this summer to go to the gym or go running. One morning when I got home from the gym, this was the sunrise I was privileged to see. It was totally hot pink because of some fires in the area and all the smoke that was in the air. Beautiful.
Max was awarded his Wolf badge at August pack meeting.
Thanksgiving Point does $2 Tuesdays in August so we went down to goof around at the gardens. This is the boys showing how hot it was that afternoon.
So we cooled off at Noah's Arc.
My favorite, and one of our last, activities of August was an afternoon spent at Classic Waterslides. I have driven by them for years off the freeway and always thought they looked kind of lame. Boy, was I wrong. They were a blast! The lines are very short so you just keep going on them over and over. They are fast and crazy and we loved them!We should have tried them years ago.

The also have big blow up water slides that are awesome!
Mike's work had a end of summer party at Mike's boss's house. It was fun to be with the people he works with and get to know them better.

We tried out the new splash pad and park in Sandy, UT. We took Mason's friend Hank with us.
A good time was had at Taylorsville pool with the cousins.
Max went off the high dive for the first time, and then kept doing it over and over. It took a lot of courage, but I finally managed to jump off it a few times too. (I couldn't have my kids tell me I was chicken!)
I had wanted to check out the new Museum of Natural History at the U of U. It was totally worth it! This is the best museum I have ever been too. There was so much to see and do. We were literally there for 4 hours and still didn't see and do everything. Loved it!
Loved this quote (and how my boys posed in front of it!)

Well, that's about it. Summer is over. Time to get back to real life. I'm always sad to see summer come to a close. I know that these moments are precious and one day I won't have cool little buddies to hang out with me. They are such a joy to be with. I love playing with them, learning with them, talking with them, laughing with them, sometimes yelling at them, but always loving them. I am looking forward to a new school year and seeing all that they will learn and how they will grow. I am so proud to be their mom!