Monday, September 28, 2009

Sept. 17, 2003

According to our local news, we are now on a tsunami watch also. They are already opening up shelters across the island. As all of you as my witnesses, I will never again ignore the prophet's counsel to get a food supply and 72 hour kits. As soon as this passes, you better believe that I am getting my emergency preparedness kit READY!

Step back in time with me for a moment...

The weather was bright and sunny. The humidity was relatively low.Not a cloud in the sky. Nice beautiful day in Norfolk, VA. My sister Susan and her family were visiting. It was also Harmony's first week of pre-school.

Sept. 18, 2003...Hurricane Isabel hit. Power lines were down. Trees were knocked down and floating down the street. Rain and strong winds. Our family sat in a 100 yr old home, and watched as the water poured from the sky.The wind gusts were so strong that our gate was knocked over. Huge limbs were literally floating down the street. We were one of the lucky ones that didn't even lose power. It was a crazy storm.

The weather yesterday (our Tuesday) was bright and sunny. White puffy clouds in the blue sky. By afternoon, it had started to turn a little grey and windy.

The storm has now changed direction and we are expecting to get hit early tomorrow morning. There are also two storms coming up right behind this one.

I spent Monday fighting the crowds at the commissary and gas station. But I feel that I have everything I need. We have batteries, candles, canned food, water,paper products, clothes etc.

Our home is made of solid concrete. Ben describes it as " a concrete bunker". We honestly don't believe that we will suffer any damage. We figure we will lose power and that is about it.

As for now, our kids have a half day today. We will find out today if school will be in session for the rest of the week.

Although we don't feel like anything will happen, we ask you to please keep us and our family and friends in your prayers. Guam hasn't seen a typhoon in a long time and it looks like we are going to get hit.

Not to alarm anyone but, with the loss of power, we also lose our phones and internet. So if that happens, we will not have a way to get a hold of you. We will keep you posted as much as we can. We appreciate all your thoughts and prayers!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

the long awaited blog update

(Oh for the cute!!)
( Connor in his classroom)
(Ethan's teacher's last name is Byrd. So this is him with his "byrd nest".
( by her all about me poster outside of her classroom)
("Ethan if you want a new shelf, you have to sand it yourself!" )

(Mommy's sweet pea)
(pre-k wears Ivan out!)
( Lots of love for Mason)
(Ivan waiting not so patiently for cookies)
(Why we like having Daddy home early!)
I hope you are sitting in a comfy chair, cause there is a lot going on around here!

Harmony has become a major bike rider. We always worry about her because she is not into sports AT ALL. She likes to spend a lot of time playing video games. However, one day she went out and decided to try again. The next thing we knew...she was all over the neighborhood. Now every day she hurries out to ride. Harmony will be starting Girl Scouts again. Her leader is our neighbor...very convenient! She is a junior GS and is looking forward to it. 5th grade has been good so far. We had open house last night. Her teacher let me know that she is very disorganized. Tell me something I don't know!(: She is supposed to be bringing a folder home every day and I haven't seen it once. We set up a reward chart and I hope that will help her!

Since it is my blog, and he is my child, I can brag a little right? Last night his teacher told us that he is ahead of every child in his class!!! He has to do seperate math problems so that he is challenged. He also is the highest reader. Go Ethan! Ethan hates wearing his tie to church every Sunday. I get new excuses every week. Last week I sat him down and asked him if he knew why we think it is important. He said no. I said well when you are twelve what happens? Exasperated he said, "I know I know! I have to go on a mission!" I started laughing, I told him unfortunatley they don't let us send boys out that early!

Connor also got a glowing report yesterday! His teacher let us know that he is consistenly finishing first. So she has him correct other people's work. He seems to have the most homework of all the kids. He and Ivan are now sharing a room. Connor and Ivan are both very messy. Ethan CAN be, but when it comes time to clean up...Ethan was all in his own. So I moved Ethan out. We are trying to teach Connor a little more responsibility...we'll see how it goes! I feel bad for Connor because he is such a night owl. But they have to be up at 6am every morning.Sometimes we are literally dragging him out of the bed. He is drinking instant breakfast in the car every morning since he is not awake enough to eat breakfast!

Ivan...well that is a whole post in itself. Ivan is so special to me. I know he is not my baby but the whole mother hen thing is...Ivan had a really bad day at school. If you follow me on facebook, you probably read about it. It was rough. On him. On me. The next day was better and every day just gets better and better. He started speech today and he said it was fun. He was so excited to show me the bear that he made in his class today! Ivan got to bring the snack in on Wed. He was soooo excited. He showed the bucket to everyone. Just Ivan and I went to the store to pick it out. I was worried because he wanted "black bears" aka chocolate teddy grahams. I was couldn't find just "black". But he took it well. Phew, crisis diverted. I worry about Ivan but we are taking one day at a time.

Mason is still known as "newborn or babyboy Turner" in all of the military programs. Like our insurance. One person tells us to go here, that person tells us to go to another. One big loop. Unfortunatley he hasn't been in for his 2 month appt. because of all this. Ben got on the scale with him a while ago and he weighed in at about 13 lbs. A nice big growing boy! He is sleeping through the night and has been for awhile now. I am grateful for all the sleep! He has a fussy period between about 4:30 to bedtime. It makes it difficult but I try to remind myself to enjoy it! Instead of reminding myself of all the other things I have to do!

Ben is now working about 5 minutes away from home. I love his short commute! We have been able to play at the park, go for walks and just enjoy having him home more. His job down here is not as difficult as his old one. So he has been studying for the next series in his tests so that he can get his architects license. He also is my own personal furniture maker. I keep him busy! He recieved his unofficial orders and is looking forward to being in a battalion.

I just got called back to the primary. I have been in a primary calling since I started going to a married ward. I figure I still have lots to learn because they keep putting me back in! This week I will be teaching sunbeams but I was actually called as the 2nd counselor. I also have been going walking and making healthier choices. I decided to go caffiene/pop free and have been since Sept.15th. Every time I get a headache or feel tired I miss it, but otherwise no. It has been a good choice for me. Other than that...well the kids keep me busy. I love the afternoons when we get to be a touch lazy.

So that is it. anyone still awake? I will try to do better with posting it has just been kind of crazy. Plus I couldn't get my memory card to work. But that has been fixed now so no worries!

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I have been having a hard time keeping up with my blogs.

I have been having a hard time keeping up with laundry.

I have been having a hard time keeping up with the dishes.

I have been very, very tired.

I have been making changes in my life. I know that once I am used to it, it will be a GOOD thing. I haven't quite made it there but I will.
I am giving up caffiene. Yep. I have made decisions regarding "my weighty issues" post. The first thing I decided to do is give it up. I have now gone 3 full days without any. I know it's not much, but it's a start.

There are other things that I am doing about my weight. But in a move that is completely unlike me, I am not going to share. The reason why? I am just not quite ready too.

So if you notice a lack of blogging, I am probably just taking a nap!

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Guam is currently bracing itself for a Tropical Storm. The sky is dark and we had a nice down pour as I dropped the kids off. The toys are all put away. Ben is filling up water jugs. I am charging DS's, ipods, etc. I don't know if anything will happen but you know what they say..."If you are prepared you shall not fear". That is the mantra we are going with.

I think warm homemade bisquits and soup are in order! We are supposed to have 6 inches of rain by the end of the day!

Oh and can you believe that this is MY 900th POST!!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009


( Right after I took this picture, the kids came to a drinking fountain. There was a stool in the way so all the kids walked around. Except for Ivan...he went right over and jumped off!

When Ivan's teacher, Ms. Allison moved last May, we had no idea what would be in store for Ivan. And once we moved him up to Anderson Elementary...we really had no idea! His IEP (Individualized Education Plan) called for at least 2 days in a regular pre-k and 2 days in his PSCD class. Also any therapies that he might need.

We talked to the principal & teachers and found out that Anderson does a full inclusion for their PSCD kids. What does that mean for Ivan? Morning pre-k (7:45-10:15) Monday thru Friday. He is in a regular ed class and his the pscd teacher comes into his class, to suppport the teachers and help them. So technically he has two teachers and one aide.

School starts early here and because we no longer live just up the means for an early wake up! I had to pull Ivan out of bed this first day, and his breakfast was a bag of cereal and cup of milk in the car!

He was so excited to be just like the big kids. No "special" class, and being able to go at the same time as the older kids.

I think that when your child is "special" the little things mean so much more. I got misty eyed as I watched him walk off with the other kids. My big man.

After I dropped him off, I headed to the commissary. IT WAS THE MOST QUIET TRIP I HAVE HAD IN A LONG TIME!! Mason slept the whole time. The store itself was very empty. I got everything done really fast. But as I was walking down and aisle I noticed that 2 birds were sitting on a shelf. Ivan loves to see the birds in the store. I started to say, "Ivan look" but realized that my little buddy wasn't there.

He's growing up. I will miss my little sidekick this year. My new sidekick is still all quiet and snuggly. Harmony thinks that she is closer to Ben because they are both the oldest.Ivan and I are both the 2nd to last children in families with 5 kids. Maybe that is why he just holds a special little place in my heart. Or maybe it is because through all the trials and struggles, we are still hanging in there. I don't know, but boy I love this kid!

Monday, September 07, 2009

Kids are funny...

Some funny stuff going on around here...

Harmony and I were discussing something ( I don't remember what) and she didn't agree with my view of things. I looked at her and said, "are you fighting with me?" Her reply..."maybe, but I don't want to get into trouble."

Connor had smelled some baby oil and said, "hey this smells just like Mason!"

Ivan brought me a bag of chocolate chips and said, " If I give kisses then I get some of these for a snack."

After much convincing, I put 4 in his cup. "What?! Only four?" I told him, "there are four for my four year old." Ivan: "But I am 16!" I started cracking up and put some more in. He ran off happily and said, " I like being sixteen!!"

Ivan starts pre-k tomorrow and although I am going to enjoy the quiet, I know I am going to miss this kid!

One day at a Time

The words "I hate Guam" were muttered (ok yelled a couple of times) a lot during this weekend. We have endured no water pressure, so many gnats we can't even count, maps that aren't labeled goes on and on. Some people think that living on an island = paradise. Let me tell you, it's not true.

A lot of our friends moved away from Guam this summer. Almost all of them talked about the things that they would miss. After this weekend, I racked my brain but really couldn't come up with anything. It's sad I know. I will miss friends that we have made, but other than that...hmmm.

This morning, I got up to go walking. It was not quite 6am and the sun was coming up. The moon was shiny and bright, but the sky was pinks and oranges. The palm trees were swaying in the breeze, and I thought, "well this isn't so bad."

So I decided to take it one day at a time. Find one thing every day that I appreciate about this island. I am still counting down until the day we go home, but maybe I just have to adjust my attitude a little. So while I didn't have my camera with me on my walk, this is one of my favorites while I have been here.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Why God Made Moms

Mason has been crabby for about 12 hours now.
He is finally sleeping.
Ivan is screaming his head off because I won't let him watch The Simpsons movie.
I get to go to an IEP meeting for him in 1.5 hours. Oh joy.
I shelled out $56 dollars today for random school stuff.
I have volunteered to bake for the PTO.
I have volunteered to bake and get crafts ready for Ivan's class.
Harmony doesn't think I know whose agendas need signed, who needs money for recorders, who needs book logs filled out. However, I do.
Ethan's teacher sent home a "Additional School Supplies Needed" list. We haven't bought enough yet?

So today when my friend Heidi posted this...I knew I needed it. It made me laugh a lot and cry a little. Hormones. Oh hormones.


Answers given by 2nd grade school children to the following questions:

Why did God make mothers
1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's mom like me.

What kind of a little girl was your mom?
1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice..

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?
3. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms work at work and work at home and dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friends.
4. Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your mom perfect?
1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd diet, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.
2. I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on the back of her head.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

How could I forget?

Having 2 blogs and being on facebook, I forget when and where I post certain things. I forget that not everyone reads my blog (!) or some people aren't on Facebook. So for those of you who haven't heard...

We got our officially unofficial orders. Why are they considered unofficial? Because they aren't on paper. And if they aren't on paper...they are easily changed. BUT the fact that Ben is allowing me to publicly announce it is saying a lot. Anyhoo...our next duty station is...PORT HUENEME, CA!

I am absolutely ecstatic to be going so close to home. We have not been within a day's drive of family (let alone 2 hours)since the last time we were stationed there! And at that time, Connor was only one!

I am already plotting & planning. Trips over holiday weekends,visiting CA friends, trips during spring break, holidays with family...ahh I can't wait.

Seriously everyone is going to get sick of us! I can't wait!

A weighty issue

Today is my "Guam birthday". Although I am not technically 31 yet...there is nothing like a birthday to make you stop and take notice of your life.

Last year as I entered my 30's I told myself this was it. It was my time to get healthy. Once and for all. I wanted to look in the mirror and liked what I saw. I wanted to run and play with the kids. I wanted Ben to think, "boy I am so lucky to be married to such a hottie", I wanted to be a good example to Harmony. A little less than 2 months later...pregnant.

I gained 15 lbs during my pregnancy. Although I seriously struggled with the gestational diabetes, my doctors were impressed that I had kept my weight gain so low. I was impressed because I wasn't doing anything to help it. Seriously.

On the 4th of July, I was dialated to a 3. I was tired, cranky, contracting constantly. But I wanted to have fun with the kids at the fireworks. I spent the night sitting in a chair. My back hurt. My legs were tired. I was tired. Ben would have to help me get out of the camp chair. Yes part of this was just being pregnant. But part of me kept thinking, " I hate this. I don't want to not be able to keep up with my kids."

At the end of every one of my pregnancies I feel huge. And it's funny because as soon as I have that baby, I feel super skinny!! Lol

Today I have been feeling:
5)grumpy with Ivan

My diet since Mason has been born is a lot of chocolate and diet coke. Diet of champions right? I spend so much time in the rocking chair that I feel lazy.

Although I don't feel healthy, all in all, I am very content with my life. I am happy with where we are. I just don't like looking in the mirror.

I am not sure what to do.

My roadblocks are:
my sweet tooth
putting myself last
Mason is very fussy at dinner and I often find myself not eating dinner until 10 pm, breakfast (if at all) at 11 and lunch around 2 or 3
I love cooking and baking but don't find making healthy stuff as fun
I have a grocery budget
I have lots of other people to cook for
I don't want to be hungry
My strengths:
I like to exercise..when I find the time
I am a morning I like to get it done first thing
I have support from my family
I have a husband who loves me
I have kids who love me

So questions...
Do I follow a low fat diet and not worry about calories?
Do I count calories?
How much exercise do I do?
Can I drink Crystal Light instead of water?Does that count?
Should I follow a plan like weight watchers?
Should I do a South Beach diet and watch my carbs?
How do I balance healthy eating with what I feed my family?
How do I do it so we all eat one meal, not the kids eating one and me something else?
How do I get rid of my sweet tooth?

Questions, comments and help would be appreciated. I know a lot of my family and friends are very fit and healthy. Help a girl out, I want to be among your ranks!

Then again, should I just screw it all and wait until I am 41?