June Trip to Bismarck

We headed to Bismarck for our monthly temple trip again. It is so much work to drive four hours just to go to the temple! Each month I try to reason with myself on why it would be okay to just skip this one month; it's a slippery slope. Yes, it's worth it to make the trip but I am really looking forward to living closer to a temple. Normally Sam goes to the session on Friday night and I go Saturday morning but I had a lot of shopping to do the next day so I went on Friday night. I nursed Declan and then left to the temple. Sam got the boys ready and took them to the pool.

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The session was fairly empty. There were only seven women and four men in the session. I felt so clear-headed and comforted at the temple. It was nice to be there.

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When I came out of the temple, I sent Sam a text. He responded, "Hey. The boys are still up. We stayed at the pool until 8:45. Edison peed in the elevator, our neighbors knocked on the wall and then came to our door to complain about our crying kid interrupting their tv watching. I couldn't find a pacifier to help him go to sleep." So... It didn't go well? I was laughing so hard.

The next morning, we dropped Sam off at the temple (another small session; three women and five men) and then I took the boys shopping for picture outfits.

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It rained the whole morning. Heavier rain than I have seen in years. It was exciting and I wanted to run and play in it.

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We started driving home right at noon and got home at 4pm.

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We went to our ward barbecue. It started pouring rain a few minutes after it started and everyone hustled under the trees. Eventually most people went inside the building but the kids were content playing in the wet parking lot.

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We were so excited for the Upper Missouri Valley Fair! I went one night last year but I was volunteering with Alex's gymnastics club and I didn't get to see the sights, try the fair food, or watch my kids go on rides. Our first stop was to see the animals. We got there just in time for the boys to try milking a cow.

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The animals were sticking their heads through the fences and licking Declan's leftovers off of his tray. He was not happy about this and kept pushing their heads away.

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We bought some tickets for the boys to go on rides. Tickets were $1/each and most rides required three or four tickets. Totally insane.

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We walked around the whole fair and then told the boys to choose one ride. We didn't want them to choose the first ride they saw and then want to ride the next one they saw as well. Their choice was the helicopters.

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We bought 20 tickets so we let them choose another ride: the cars. Edison spent the whole ride either turned around to watch Alex or waving at me. So cute.

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 The last ride they chose was the dragon rollercoaster. Alex was terrified and my jaw hurt by the end of the ride because I was smiling and laughing so hard.

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Fair food. In my opinion, it's the best part.

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They were doing free caricatures and since Alex and Edison already have their own, we got Declan's done. She threw away her first draft because it was kind of terrifying. This is what we ended up with.

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"Look, Mom. It's the Holy Ghost." Umm, what?

There was a strange woman wandering around with this "Enchanted Wagon" turtle following her. She sprinkled fairy dust (glitter) on everyone's heads and had them jumping around and dancing.

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We went back to the fair again the next day.

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The little piglets next to their mom were less than two days old. It was crazy to see them walking around!

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Alex and Edison stood around waiting until they could milk the cow again.

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We all played in the bounce houses. Sometimes I forget to play because I am so busy being in mom mode.

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Alex ran over to me flipping me off and yelling, "Pooooop!" A child left it as a gift for everyone else at the bottom of the slide.

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Back for more food.

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I bought them enough tickets for one more ride. They wanted to go on the dragon rollercoaster again. But it was out of order so they ended up going down the big slide. Alex started heading up and the operator said that Edison was too small. He added that Sam could take Edison up but we would have to pay for each of them. We only had enough tickets left for one person. Cue Edison's breakdown. The operator said, "This is the second kid I have made cry today. You can go up." So it worked out. One ride down the slide for the three boys was $8. Ridiculous.

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Good times at the fair. There was so much good people watching to do. These people must be in hiding the rest of the year and then they put on their especially trashy clothes and come out to the fair. It is amazing.


Inky & Pinky

My kids have become obsessed with stuffed animals. I did not intentionally buy them an excessive amount of stuffed animals but I am also not a touchy-feely person so maybe they went somewhere else for that comfort? They always take at least one of their animals to bed. They tend to go through a rotation of them though. Not really attached to any certain animal. At the beginning of the school year, when Alex's class was learning the letter "B", all of the kids had to bring a stuffed bear to school. Alex picked one out of our toy drawer of stuffed animals and I asked him what it was named. He had no concept up until that point of naming stuffed animals. It was like pulling teeth to get him to come up with a name. Eventually he chose Dash, and the naming-stuffed-animals floodgates were opened.

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The octopus came from our ward Halloween party. The elephant was mine when I was a kid, but Alex named it himself.

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Inky and Pinky

When we went to the Royal Saskatchewan Museum in April, we got these dinosaurs for the boys.

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Rexy and Dragon

Before Alex was born, my aunt gave us the cougar. I can't remember where the yellow bear came from. The blue bear was taken from my parents' house.

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Cougar, Teddy, and Bear (formerly Dash)

Edison loves that Scout can say his name and knows his favorite food and color. Alex has learned all of the songs though. Sometimes we hear Alex sing, "Me and my pal Edison. We're the best of friends!" He sounds just like Scout. Computer voice and all.
The yellow duck (Ducky) was a gift to Alex from one of Sam's classmates. It has a red Cornell shirt somewhere. Edison has claimed it as his own.
The frog is named Hopper. Edison got it at the ward Halloween party last year.
The brown bear was also mine as a kid. I called it Freckles but I convinced the boys to keep the name.
The boys got super creative and named the next one Big Bear, but I called it Snuggles when I got him. I bought him when my best friend and I rode our bikes up the hill to the grocery store. I was probably 12 years old.
Nemo was Edison's Christmas gift from Alex. Alex got a fish as well but that was confiscated by the Gunny Monster because Alex forgot to pick it up before bed one night.

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I asked Edison to remind me all of the names of these bears and he listed their names, "Scout, Ducky, Hopper, Fishy, Edison, Big Bear, Freckles." So cute.

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The boys with their own animals they built at Kids Day Out this year.

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Alex and Edison snuggling the cutest little animal of all.

I have no idea why I am recording all of these things. My intense paranoia about all things ever makes me wonder about our house burning down sometimes. I could keep important documents in a fireproof safe but a lot of little thing we have, even what would look meaningless to most people, has a story for us. My kids are making me into a hoarder.


Seeing Williston

Most people have never been to Williston, North Dakota. I am going to start a regular blog feature (sounds so official) to help everyone get to know Williston a little better. It will sometimes be good and sometimes bad. There is a lot of both around here.

Williston's online presence, excluding Facebook, is nil. It is shocking how much information can be found on Facebook though. I belong to several groups for people who want to buy, sell, or trade items. There are groups for people who have lost or found pets, people who want friends, have kids, or are oilfield wives. And there is always room to complain or ask for restaurant reviews as well. There is a group for everyone. One of my favorite groups seems to catch all of the above. One night in May, I was in bed in our hotel room in Bismarck. Three kids were sleeping just a few feet away from me and Sam was at the gym. I could not stifle my laughter when I came across this fabulous listing. Insane rent prices are driving people to the brink. The people in Williston are mostly friendly and mostly strange.

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June Dates

The nice weather has totally opened up our options for dates. However, the boys still want to do the same things each date. Edison's Daddy Date started with a trip to Walmart to look at toys.

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Then they went out fishing. But it was pouring rain so they only got to stay out for a little bit before they got rained out. There is always frozen yogurt to keep the date going though!

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I knew this was going to happen: Alex and Edison prefer Daddy Dates. I am just not very fun! Luckily, Sam still likes going on dates with me. We went to the park to have a picnic and play tennis.

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I am really horrible at tennis. I am not being humble. I am so bad. Sam was using his brand new racket which meant I used his old one. I didn't realize how heavy it was until we traded later on. I felt like someone had given me a dead arm. We went back to our picnic blanket and watched the clouds while we talked. It was very nice.

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For Alex's Mommy Date, we went to the airport to watch the planes.

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We ended up playing I Spy the entire time. Sometimes I can see where Alex is looking when he picks his color and I guess the object right away. But then he tells me I am wrong so I keep guessing. Each time I make a guess he weighs in his mind if that is what he "chose" and then he will tell me if I am right or wrong. It is totally cheating but so cute! And I guess I am kind of cheating by watching to see where he's looking.

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On our way home, we stopped by the Niederhauser's and Alex tried to break their fish tank by climbing into it.

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