Dream Shard Blog: The Scintillating Adventures of Our Household

Choose a Topic:

May '15


Found the girls in a surprisingly peaceful setting near bedtime.



I love seeing my kids together and happy.



Mar '15

Dinnertime Candids

During dinner tonight Elizabeth had a pouty moment. She has the best glowering, sullen looks where she tucks her chin under and sticks out her lower lip. I missed the lower lip but caught the rest. I can’t help but laugh when she glowers.




So then Carissa wanted me to take a picture of her, too.


And we couldn’t leave Wes out.





Nov '14

Our Saturday

We started our Saturday with flu shots for everyone. Boy, it was fun.

Actually, I anticipated that the kids (the two older ones, anyway) wouldn’t like the idea of it, so we didn’t tell them about it until we were almost there. Carissa immediately starts to protest and Wes starts saying, “Daniel Tiger,” meaning that he’s remembering the episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood on PBS Kids where Daniel goes to the doctor and gets a shot. (Which, by the way, in no way makes it easier for him to go get a shot, even though it’s “just like Daniel!”)

We were supposed to start with Carissa since she’s the one with an egg allergy and should be monitored for 30 minutes after to ensure she doesn’t react. But the nurses pulled the shots for John and me first, so we went first. Then Elizabeth because she didn’t know any better. She had a sucker in each hand as the shot went in, so even though she cried a minute or two, she quickly remembered her suckers and was OK again.

Wes was harder because he knew and didn’t want the shot. John tried reasoning with him for a while but it didn’t help. He pulled out his tablet and got Wes on Angry Birds. Wes was involved, cried briefly at the shot (super briefly) and then was engrossed in Angry Birds again.

Last of all was our allergic one, Carissa, who during this time was hiding in the lobby. She was effectively working herself “into a state.” We pulled her into the exam room and tried reasoning with her. No good. Her arms and chest and cheeks were flushed because she was so upset. The nurse said it was a good thing we noticed that now so we’d know it wasn’t part of an allergic reaction later. When it came to it we just had to get the shot done, and so the nurse did it.

It did not go over well.

If she was unreasonable before the shot, she was inconsolably unreasonable now. I can’t even remember all the things she was yelling and crying about, but we couldn’t even get her out of the exam room when it was over. She refused to leave. So we left her for a few minutes, but she wouldn’t come out, not even when the nurse tried to bribe her.


Finally John pulled her outside and she did not calm down until we were at BYU, which was our next stop. On Saturdays Wes gets to hang out with different BYU athletic teams, and today it was the gymnastics team–one of Wes’s favorites!

We were actually on time, for once, but the door was locked. The team was trying to get someone over to open it for us. So we waited.


And waited.


And waited more.


Until it opened! Wes loves all things tumbling and gymnastics. He dove right in, literally, by jumping into the foam pit and then climbing this thing.


I’d be scared of heights, but not Wes.


He did it again and again and again and again.


Wes also liked the trampoline.


And the rings.


Carissa found a buddy right away (Sin To) and got to work building castles out of the foam pieces and playing in the foam pit. She loved it.


While I have no pictures of Elizabeth to show, she was equally happy running around everywhere and doing everything an almost-two-year-old can do.

Once we got home I made lunch all around, put Elizabeth down for a nap, and did dishes. The plan was to get groceries but to wait until Elizabeth woke up so I could take her with me and leave the two older (and easier kids to babysit) home with John. But she took a long three-hour nap! By the time she woke up there were other things we needed to do and I didn’t get out for the shopping until after 4:30pm–dinnertime. Dinnertime is the worst time to go grocery shopping, especially when you take kids. I ended up taking Wes and Elizabeth and I admit to buying all sorts of things that weren’t on the list because they kept tossing things in and I was losing the willpower to resist. They were hungry, I was hungry (and I had brought snacks for them, but still), and we were at Wal-mart, which is the black hole of all grocery stores. You could go in and never come out, it’s so big and full of people and lines. By the time we checked out it was 6:30 and we had to wait in line 20 minutes just to pay for our stuff.

Thankfully Wes, who can sometimes be so frustrating to take places, was a great helper tonight. He loves to help, more than almost anything. He helped me put all the food on the conveyor belt, he helped me put the filled bags into our cart, and he even helped me swipe the credit card (his favorite part).

OK, we ended up with cupcakes and Oreos and drumstick ice cream treats we definitely had NOT planned on buying. But after all his hard work, he earned that cupcake with frosting.


Oct '14

Today, the Dentist

We started our morning at the dentist. We are grateful to have dental insurance, which we never used to have, and I intend to use it.

Today was maybe the fourth time my kids (the two older ones, anyway) have been to the dentist. The first time was when Wes was about four, and Carissa one or two. It was a total train wreck. Wes had meltdown after meltdown. (Carissa did fine.) After that I stayed away from the dentist and eventually chose a different one to go to. I think I’ve also found my voice as a parent since then, recognizing that for Wesley’s needs I really need to talk to the people who work with him and help them understand and prepare for his challenges curing the visit.

I’m learning that Wes needs consistent exposure to difficult experiences to help him adjust. I have an appointment set for him next month, and every month thereafter, to get him into the dentist and help him get used to being there. As soon as we exit the lobby (fun area) and enter the main part of the dental office (scary area) Wes gets nervous. It’s written all over him. I know it’s because of his previous medical experiences of many kinds (drawing blood, getting x-rays, sleep study, having tonsils looked at, etc. etc. etc.) where because of his unwillingness to do the things he’s asked to do (hold still, open mouth, do this or that) he has been held and forced against his will to do it. Sometimes as a parent you think that’s the only way. The job gets done.

But it has its effects.

So Wes is super nervous and non-compliant at any medical office. Today he did really good overall, but that’s because we didn’t make him sit in the x-ray chair (DEATH! HORRIBLE DEATH!) or even in the chair that leans back where the dentist examines him. He also didn’t get his teeth cleaned. There was a moment when I tried to force him to sit in the lean-back chair for his exam but it was clearly a bad idea and we adjusted. Dr. Ryan just sat next to him and really nicely showed him how he was going to count his teeth. And then Wes complied. And that’s why we’re going back next month too.

Carissa and Elizabeth, on the other hand, did everything they were asked to do. Even Elizabeth! I was shocked that she sat still and obeyed the x-ray tech and didn’t cry or fuss or anything. And the same thing when Dr. Ryan looked at her teeth. No problem at all. And she’s not even 2 yet!

Carissa said she didn’t like the x-rays, which I can understand since she has to hold something in her mouth and it’s kind of big and awkward, but she didn’t cry. The kids all got rewards from the treasure machines at the end and I took them home, relieved.

Until next month.





Oct '14

This weekend stuff

Realized I didn’t know where Elizabeth went, and found her behind a closed door. Sneaky girl sneaking around with my black waterproof mascara.



Wes is giving another talk in Primary (church) tomorrow. The topic is how the Proclamation to the World on the Family helps our family. Wes is a good reader and can read most of the words himself. Very proud of him!




I took Elizabeth our for errands today. She lasted through 2.5 stores before she didn’t last anymore.


Yesterday I took the kids to the mall (to visit the Halloween store for costume ideas) while our carpets were being cleaned (the sound scares Wes). We got sidetracked into the amazing toy store and came out with this new digger for Wes. He plays happily with it in our sandbox, which is starting to get too small for his 7-year-old body.


Carissa showed me this picture she drew of our family in her Hello Kitty scrapbook. I like the buttons on John’s shirt, the color of my coat, how tiny Elizabeth is, and the thought bubble above Carissa’s head that shows she’s dreaming of Hello Kitty.


Wes and Elizabeth both like blowing bubbles a lot.



Aug '14

We finally did something fun

We finally did something fun together.

After dragging my three kids to my physical therapy appointment I took them to a splash pad to play.

The personality of each kid is apparent:

1) Carissa: Put on eye protection and stay to the edge of the water.




2) Elizabeth: Run like a crazy woman through the water and get as wet as possible, as fast as possible. And then retreat to Mom for a snuggle in the towel.



3) Wes: Drink the water.