Friday, May 28, 2010

What I'm going to do this summer...

Today is the last day of school and it's such a bittersweet day. I'm looking forward to not having such a structured schedule, not having to worry about getting the kids out the door by a certain time, allowing late nights every now and then, etc.... BUT, it seems like every summer I get more and more stressed about how I'm going to keep the kids entertained! So I've been sitting here stressing about it and then I remembered this list that I found in Kya's room the other day....

What I'm going to do this summer

By Kya Cluff

1. Crystal Springs (I have no idea where she got this idea!)
2. Play outside
3. Play board games

4. Make stuff out of paper
5. Have a campout on the trampoline

6. Do manacures and pedacures (only things she misspelled on the entire list)

7. Water balloon fight

8. Play in our pool

9. Spy on Ember
(ha ha, she cracks me up!)
10. Movie

11. Sing primary songs

12. Have a party on the trampoline

13. Go on a treasure hunt

14. Play with the family
15. Play basketball

16. Play baseball

17. Go to the park

18. Play on the trampoline together (Together with WHO?)

19. Play with Q-Tip (our cat)

(and yes, it was color-coded just like this!)

This list made me feel so much better! I love how simple it is and how easily entertained kids can prove to be. They don't need costly outings or expensive vacations. Sometimes I think as adults we go to too much of an extreme to make sure our kids are entertained, when it's really just life's simple pleasures that they want. I mean, sure it's great to do those things every once in a while if we have the time and money to do so. But don't rule out the simple and easy things.

I think with the exception of Crystal Springs (and hey, maybe even that!), I could help her accomplish everything on this list!

Here's to a fun and simple summer!!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Summer fun brings.....March babies!

The month of March brought THREE new babies to our circle of family and friends. All three couples wanted the sex of the baby to be a surprise. I could never do that! But it did make it very exciting to find out what each one of them had. We were guessing they'd all be girls, but we were only right with one.

On March 1st our close friends, Kalun and Kristi Merrill, welcomed a baby GIRL they named Addison Emma. She was 7 lbs. 6 oz. and 20 inches. Such a beautiful baby! Here she is at 2 days old:

Then Matthew's brother Dave and his wife Kenia welcomed a baby BOY on March 12th. They named him Joaquin K after both of the grandpa's middle names.
He was 9 lbs. 2 oz. and 22 inches!!! What a big boy! He already started out big, but for one reason after another we didn't get to see him until he was 16 days old, so he hardly even looked like a newborn by then!

And finally, my brother Chuck and his wife Ginger welcomed a baby BOY on March 18th. He was 7 lbs. 1 oz. and 20 inches. Ginger had him naturally. I think she's crazy, but to each his own! ;) About 2 days after he was born they finally came up with a name for him....Zaxton Kalan. Of course they had to go with another Z name! (Their other two are Zailey and Zenick.) We had a fun time guessing what crazy name they'd come up with! If names were allowed in Scrabble, his name would be worth a lot! His middle name is a combination of both of the grandpa's middle names, Kay and Alan.

We drove all the way up to Bear Lake to see him a couple days after he was born and planned to spend the weekend so we could help out with their other two children and make meals, etc... Well, after the first day of being there I got really sick and we had to leave early so we didn't get to spend nearly as much time with them as hoped, but they came down a month later for Kya's baptism and we got to see him again. He was still tiny, but didn't quite have that newborn look anymore!

Welcome to the world Addison, Joaquin, and Zaxton!!!

Itty Bitty Ball

Logan played Itty Bitty Ball again this year. Same as last year it was the one that has a little of, basketball, soccer, volleyball, and football. The name of their team was Team Batman! His coach this year was much better! I found out later that it was a girl from Kalun & Kristi's ward. She was great! Being a whole year older made a HUGE difference. He participated a LOT more and actually did pretty well all things considered. Although, he did still: get easily distracted, do a lot of weird dancing, act aloof every once in a while with his shirt....A LOT!!! I've found this to be a common theme for kids his age. I'd look around the room at the other kids to see if they were doing it too. Logan was definitely not alone!
He and his teammates also thought it was cool to show off their muscles!
And there was always candy at the end of each day of course. One of the best parts!

Logan had pretty good form during volleyball. He did surprisingly well!

Logan was one of the biggest kids on his team which meant he got one of the biggest shirts. This picture just doesn't give you that great of an idea, but it was pretty darn big!
This picture gives you a little perspective. It was big enough for ME for heavens sake!

Peyton had a lot of fun as a spectator!

Logan being the goalie on Soccer Day

Lined up ready to play some football...

Catching the football - apparently Logan thought he was going to make a hoop for it to go through!

Getting ready to kick the football...

Practicing throwing it through targets. Logan was actually pretty darn good at this one!

Logan in his football stance I guess. We made it all the way through the game of flag football this year without Logan throwing punches when people tried to steal his flag thing. ;)

This lady made me laugh. Seriously? Check out that camera! She looked like paparazzi! I half expected to find my kid on the front of a tabloid!

Final day - They played a bunch of silly games, played with the parachute (one of the highlights!) and then Lenny the Lion came!

Way to go, Logan!

Logan's warming up to Lenny. He agreed to take a picture with him as long as he could stay this far away from him!
Peyton is still very unsure about Lenny the Lion. She would NOT go near him!

It was another great year! Go Team Batman!!!


The only thought that came to mind when I looked out the window this morning was, "SERIOUSLY?!?!?"

I had been waiting to put out my new summery welcome mat until I was SURE it was done snowing. I finally put it out last Monday because SURELY it had to be done, right? Wrong! It looks a little silly and out of place. Come on, I've lived in Utah all my life.....I really should've expected this.

My poor plants and lilies that we planted on Saturday! Why oh why didn't I procrastinate....again?!

September came down this morning wearing a cute little spring outfit. I told her to look outside. She did. She still wanted to wear it. Then she asked me where her black boots were. I had put them away already seeing as how we shouldn't have needed them anymore! I told her it would look kind of silly, but the more I thought about it, it just seemed to fit with the weather! So we went and scrounged up her boots. She left the house looking like a perfect combination of winter and spring, just like it did outside!

I guess it will be a pajama day for us. And now maybe I'll finally have a chance to catch up on all my blogging!!! Maybe it will be a good day after all! :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


I know, I know, it's been a while since I've blogged. I've been meaning to and wanting to. It's been a nagging thought in the back of my head for weeks and weeks. And not in a bad way. I LOVE to blog! I love having something to look back on and remind me of special occasions or random silly happenings. My blog is my journal and without it I'd probably forget so much detail about all of the events and things in my life. Life just gets so busy sometimes, which is exactly WHY I haven't gotten any blogging done the past couple months.

Take a look at this calendar:

Why am I complaining about being so busy when the one and only thing on my calendar for last month was Kya's birthday?! I had to laugh when we went to turn the calendar to May and realized that that was the only thing that ever got written down for the entire month of April. In reality we were SO busy that we didn't even have time to ever write anything down!

Not only have the past couple months been busy, but they have been such an emotional rollercoaster! I've spent a LOT of time crying the past few weeks, but thank goodness not ALL of it was for bad/sad reasons. There were quite a few really great, happy moments too. It's funny how just when you think things are going great (not perfect, but great) and you're finally on top of has a way of throwing a curve ball at you. I'm trying to do better at rolling with the punches. Many days I just feel punched!

So, before I let any more time pass and forget too much, I need to hurry and blog about all of those moments. But just to avoid an anxiety attack from feeling completely overwhelmed (which has been a pretty constant theme lately), I think I'll ease back into things and try to do just a couple posts a day. One of these days I'll be back on top of it. Or, maybe not! And if not, I'll TRY not to guilt myself over it. Because after all, there are more important things in life. Like MAKING the memories that are blog-worthy, but may or may not ever actually make it onto the blog!

Friday, February 26, 2010

New National Holiday: Crazy Outfit Day

I don't remember exactly what it was for, but today at the girls school they had "Crazy Outfit Day". They have been so excited about this day and have had their outfits picked out for a while. This is how they looked when they left this morning:

I love watching my kids get so excited about stuff like this and see how creative they are. They make me laugh!!

Note: It's still a little wet outside from the snow yesterday so they actually wore real shoes (mismatched of course), but they took their slippers to change into at school.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Valentine's Day in the Cluff household is not complete without:


A new tradition that apparently started though was this:

I think it's a Valentine's love fort!

We had a fun day celebrating Valentine's Day today. This day is an extra special day for Matthew and I. For Valentine's Day back in 1999 my sister and I invited our boyfriends over for dinner at our apartment. Later that night Matthew actually proposed to me. It was a complete him and to me. It was not something that he planned. It just felt right and he seized the moment! We had only been dating for 2 weeks! So Valentine's has always been a day that has been that much more special for us. Every year we re-create the meal that I made for Matthew that Valentine's Day 11 years earlier. Over the years the day has evolved into a fun "family" holiday. I love all FIVE of my valentines!

One last thing I wanted to share....
Among the candy that September came home with from her school Valentine party on Friday was one of those typical Necco hearts that said:

The world sure is a different place than when I was bringing home Necco hearts from school Valentine's parties!

I hope you all had a fun Valentine's Day and you got to spend it with at least one person you love!!


Friday, February 12, 2010


September was in DESPERATE need of a haircut (she had been trying to grow it out, but it wasn't working too well - it was just looking "stringy"), and both Kya and Peyton could use a trim. My friend Katie's daughter, Annie (who is a good friend of Kya's) was wanting her hair cut too. They were out of school last Friday, so we decided to make a GIRLS DAY of it and took them all to get their hair cut. Then we went home and did manicures. What a fun, girly day! I forgot to take before pictures, but here are the afters:

The girl that did Kya's hair was done before anyone else, so she decided to curl it. I LOVED IT! I wish I could figure out how to do it because it really just gave so much volume to her face. She looked like a completely different person! But alas, I lack skills in the hair department. I've tried and tried to recreate this look with no success. :(

September's was a little shorter than I requested.....but as long as there isn't anything big coming up (and there's not), I'd always rather have them go too short then leave it too long. It's that much longer we get to wait until a haircut is needed! She looks so cute! I've always loved her hair short.

This was Peyton's first REAL haircut. It kind of made me sad! I think we cut off the majority of what she had left of her curls. :( All of the girls at the salon thought she was so stinkin cute. I would have to agree! She is so stinkin cute, but man is she hard to get a good picture of! She is one of my favorite subjects to photograph because she is STUNNINGLY beautiful, but I can never get a good shot of her because she's also a complete character!!! I couldn't get her to sit still to get a good shot that would show off her haircut....but as she was running away from me I hurried and snapped one that kind of gives you an idea.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Guess who got glasses???

Doesn't she look so cute and smart?!

We've known for a few months now that September needed glasses because she would squint to see EVERYTHING! But we had to wait until open enrollment with our insurances....and then we still had to wait for January when her coverage would start. This girl was counting down the days til her appointment. She was so excited to get glasses! We found out at the appointment just how desperately this girl needed them. Her vision is 20/200!!! For those who don't understand what that means (I didn't), it means that things the average person can see at 200 feet away September would have to be 20 feet away! Holy crap! The dr. joked that he wasn't sure how she'd made it so far in life. ;) She has had them for two weeks now and still just loves them! Being able to see is really an amazing thing!

Christgiving Thankmas!

We started a tradition with my family last year of celebrating Christmas and Thanksgiving together. We call it "Christgiving Thankmas". We do all the gift giving and the big feast all in one get-together. It's the best of both worlds! Last year we did it in between the two holidays, but because of scheduling conflicts this year we ended up doing it early January. Plus, we have 4 birthdays in my family ranging from 12/28 - 1/26, so we celebrated them too! We did it in Bear Lake again in one of Chuck's and Ginger's cabins just like last year.

My camera went missing during all of the gift opening so I didn't get any pics of that, darn it! But here a few fun, random snapshots I took:

Joey, what are you doing???

Kya, Kaylee, and September enjoying looking at the photo books my Mom made.

My Dad wearing the new hoodie and pj bottoms we got him.

Emily showing off her drawing skills.

Why is Zenick not happy? Maybe his Dad just gave him VINEGAR to drink! Chuck played a mean trick on him and gave him a cup with vinegar in it that he thought was just water. Poor kid!!

Peyton showing off the mess she just made of herself. Who left the red marker out?!?

Nick brought up his girlfriend, Sami. Last year Joey brought up Emily and 5 months later they got married. We'll see.... :)

Zenick is obsessed with tags!

Peyton can touch the ceiling!

Nick too! ;)

Bonnie making her famous and delicious egg nog! Yum yum!!!

I don't remember what was going on here, but apparently Peyton thought it was TOO LOUD and thought she'd help protect the ears of the innocent!

We brought up our Wii and the new Super Mario Bro's game, which is kind of a throwback to the Super Mario Bros. on the original Nintendo gaming system. It was so much fun to see the little kid come out in everyone......ahhh, childhood memories!

I LOVE everybody's faces! We're all so serious!!

Well, except Chuckie....

Wow, this must have been a really tense moment....
Not for long...

The whole trip was sooooo much fun! Great food, great company, and so many great memories made! Thanks Fam! Can't wait til next year!!