Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Fun

Christmas Eve we invited my parents to come over for dinner. I made ham, squash, corn, rolls, and mom brought the cheesy potatoes. After dinner the boys played Christmas bingo while mom and I cleaned up. Then J played the piano for us. J, James and Jakub opened their jammies, and a Christmas adventure book that Santa had sent them in the mail. We started at 6 and by 8 they boys were in bed sleeping. When John and I went in to check on J he was laying sideways, we moved his head to the pillow and he said, "these jammies make me run faster."
Our Christmas Miracle was the boys sleeping until 7:30, they are usually all up by 6:00. I made breakfast cake, we opened presents and watched the snow fall. John surprised me with a new set of scriptures. He wrote his testimony inside. What a good husband. We were planning to head for Clinton at 10 but we decided to wait until 2. The boys have all been sick but it wasn't going to stop of plans just slow them down.

Ofter 2 hours in the car we made it to Grandma and Grandpa Mills'. Again we had present time. James and Jakub got the Little People Nativity, outfits, and books. J got 2 Wii games, an outfit and books.
On Friday Jaren and Sarah came over and we gave them our gift. I made them a levi quilt. It was made with blood, sweat, and tears, but mostly love.

Jakub loved playing in the box. But the funniest part of this picture is James hair.

On Saturday it took us 2 1/2 hours to get home. It was a fun filled holiday. I am grateful for this time of year to reflect on traditions and Jesus Christ. I am truly blessed to know he is my Savior.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas at the Sparrow's

Today was our family Christmas Party. Charlie and Melissa leave for California tomorrow with her family. Scott and Paige will be spending Christmas Eve at home and then with her family on Christmas Day. Karen and Brandon will be with his family for the holiday, so today was Christmas.
We celebrated with our traditional Christmas Eve Menu. Everyone's favorite finger food. This year the only people that stayed true to there usual was Grandpa (stuffed mushrooms) and Karen (Ham roll ups) The rest of us ventured out to new found loves. I made John's Aunt Brenda's cheese ball. It is the best recipe. I usually choose pumpkin roll. Charlie and Melissa brought fondue. Scott made bacon raps. And Grandma made bread sticks and the none finger food, Broccoli soup.
After lunch was present time. There were 7 big huge boxes in the basement one for each grandkid and then a small package for baby Elle.

James was slow at getting started so John helped.
Jakub opened his one tiny rip at a time.
Inside the big box was 3 presents and a bean bag chair. Each kid reseaved a blanket made by grandma, jammies and a stuffed toy. J's bag was blue, his blanket said future missionary and his monkey had a future missionary tag. James and Jakub got dragon blankets and Yo, Gabba, Gabba toys.
After the Grandma gifts the kids played in the big boxes while the adults exchanged gifts. Youngest first.....Charlie and Melissa opened a down comforter from Mom and Dad. Karen and Brandon opened a broken snowman cookie jar from Charlie and Melissa. It had dropped out of the bag when Melissa had carried it in the house just hours before. They gave Taylor some books and Elle an outfit. Scott and Paige's family opened a Blockus game from the Rawlings. Our boys received a hand made car map track from Scott and Paige. They gave John and I a flag badge that Scott wore on his uniform in Iraq and plaque thanking us for our prayers while he served. It also included a picture of his group of guys that he was in charge of. If you know me well you can guess that I cried when I saw it. Paige also gave me a headband. Way Cute!

Then it was mom and dad's turn, we had them this year. I made a 8 x 8 Christmas Scrapbook, it had pictures of Christmas' past and blank pages for the future. I am hoping mom can handle one page a year.

Mom and Dad gave all of us a plaque with our last names and it had the temples we were sealed in. Some money to go shopping and food storage.

Grandma read the Christmas Orange Story to the kids while they ate oranges in their new jammies while sitting in their chairs. Grandpa read from the bible the story of Christs birth.

It was a wonderful "Christmas" day!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Little Star/Gingerbread/FHE/Birthday

The Little Star Party is a family tradition for the Mills Family. John's Grandma Mills brings a small rapped gift for everyone. Everytime you hear the word star in the story you pass the present to the left. Whatever gift you have after the last "Star" is yours.
James and Jakub love hanging out with their uncles Bin and Jaren. Our 2nd activity was the gingerbread house decorating. Here you see Megan and Tanner working on the Noble house.
Then it was upstairs to reenact the nativity. Luke (Grandpa) told the story of Christ's Birth. In the stable you see Joseph (J), Mary (Rylie), and Baby Jesus (Wyatt). The Angel (James) with his heavenly host (Jakub) visited the shepherds (Tanner, Camden, and Caleb). Later 3 wise men (John, Bin and Jaren) came with gifts.
After FHE we sang Happy Birthday to Lara and ate Chocolate Cake with Peppermint Icecream.
Because we will not all be at Mom and Dad's during the same time on Christmas day we surprised them with a gift from all of us.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Visit to the Library

I am sad to admit that this the the first picture I have of J with Santa. He is 6 years old and I have never taken him to visit Santa. (another bad parent moment)J told Santa he wants an Ipod. Lucky for me Santa found a cheap MP3 player online a few months ago.
Taylor would not even look at Santa. But she told Grandma she wanted a doll, a toy for her baby sister, and a bone for Barkley. Grandma passed the information on to Santa.
Jakub took Santa's hand and smiled while I took a picture. He kept saying, "Santa, Santa"

James wouldn't even get close to Santa. So Grandma held him next to Santa so I could get a picture. What is a picture of Santa without a screaming child?

There was a tree with books underneath for the kids to choose from after saying hi to Santa. I love our community. Small and Generous. We didn't have to drive far or wait in line to see Santa.

The boys all wanted to go home with Grandma, so she took them. I spent an hour cleaning the kitchen, doing laundry, and vacuuming. Those tasks take all day when the boys are home. The house was only clean for about 1/2 hour, when we got home it was time for dinner and the mess what back again.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

She's Here!

My sister's c-section was this morning at 7:30. It was so fun to go see her baby girl just hours after she was born. I gave her a bottle and changed her diaper. The newborn diapers don't even fit. She is 8lbs 8ozs. that is one pound bigger than Taylor was. Her blood sugar was low just after she arrived but they are keeping an eye on her. Karen looks so tired. Her poor diabetic body struggles when pregnant. As you can tell by all the "she's" this baby girl is still with out a name.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


It was a Beautiful Turkey Day.


And Jakub
wanted to get on the roof with Papa and Uncle Scott. They were putting up Christmas lights.

My mom prepared a wonderful feast. She loves to cook and insisted on making everything by herself. It was perfect. I hope someday I can cook as well as her.
After lunch Charlie, Melissa, John and I played a game while the kids decorated gingerbread men. Grandkid # 8 is trying to get in on the action. Baby Rawlings will be here on Dec 2nd. I hope she has a name by then.
Later in the afternoon all 7 grandkids ate popcorn and watched a movie. Us girls worked on our snow and Santa projects in the craft room. I love the holidays.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

J lost his 1st tooth

Dear Tooth Fairy,

Here is a special pocket you see,
To hold the lost tooth, dear to me.

Keep this tooth in a special place.
And notice the hole in my smiling face!

Your Buddy,

Monday, November 24, 2008

Despite Illness

The flu bug attacked our house on Thursday Morning. Jakub was the first to be infected. And it has raced through the house all weekend. Friday the boys and I were suppose to leave for Clinton after school and stay at my in laws over night. Well Friday morning I was hit hard with stomach pain. I didn't get my house clean, I didn't do laundry. I could barely function. But as all of you moms know, I still had to care for the kids. Friday night James and J started throwing up. It was a mess all night as John and I ran back and forth from room to room. And remember I was not 100% myself. John scrubbed floors, I washed sheets. It was a sleepless night. Saturday was the big day for Jaren and Sarah. Jakub woke up feeling good so he left with John at 6am to head for the Salt Lake Temple. It was so hard not to just back up and go, but I didn't want to chance the mess in the car.

Family pictures were in the afternoon before the reception at union station. I packed the boys in the car with there jammies on and headed out. I am so glad we were there to get pictures. It was a beautiful reception. Jaren and Sarah looked great. I wish them a long and happy life.
Sarah and J.
Jaren and the boys.
Grandma dancing with James.
Papa hanging with Jakub.
Pretty dang cute picture of a bunch of sickies.

What a blessing it is for John and I to have all our siblings sealed to there families forever.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


So much has happened in the last 10 days. I was asked to babysit a 13 month old boy, M-Thurs. 7-4, who turns out to be very needy. I was already watching a 3 year old 2 days a week. On top of that I interviewed at the school district and got the job as a part time custodian. After 9 hours of babysitting I clean the middle school for 3 1/2 hours. I thought it would be good to work and get caught up some bills (car repairs/ER) and hopefully get some money saved so we can finish our basement.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My best deal yet....

I have been saving up coupons for the last several months. I have 5 copies of the Hearld Journal delivered on Sunday so I have 5 of each coupon. Well yesterday was a great pay off to all the coupon maddness. Karen and I left for Logan at 5:30am. Albertsons was allready packed when we got there just after 6. Some of the items we wanted were already gone.

Here is my list
8 all detergents
4 cereal
5 cookie dough
2 Q tips
6 dove bars
8 lotions
14 progresso soups
4 ragu
8 knorr sides
8 onion soup mix
8 green giant frozen veggies
4 cake mix
5 wish bone salad dressing
1 frosting
12 shampoo
3 bleach
8 skippy peanut butter

108 items
Saved $288.82

We stood in line to check out for 1 hour. It was like the day after Thanksgiving.

By 9am we were in mom's car headed for Layton for our annual birthday shopping trip. It was so much fun to hang out with my mom and sister. I used my birthday money to get me a new shirt and shoes for the upcoming wedding.

The great end to a great day was coming home to a clean house. My wonderful husband had done the dishes and cleaned up. The twins were in bed sleeping, and I was able to spend a few hours organizing and putting all my stuff away.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Bad Mom

I took James back to the Dr. yesterday. He has been so sick for over 2 weeks now. His ears are even worse. I guess his little body was having such a hard time fighting the reaction to the Amoxicillin that it didn't help the ears. So now we are on a med antibiotics. He isn't sleeping well so I haven't slept more that 4 hours a night for weeks. I hope he is on the mend and will be up and running soon.

Monday, November 3, 2008


On Saturday we had a bridal shower for my soon to be sister in law Sarah. It was a great success. After the extented family left Bin gave a great FHE lesson on being more Christ Like. Then we sang Happy Birthday to the November Birthdays....Myself, Tanner and Caleb. And ate a wonderful Gingerbread cake that Megan made.

On Sunday my mom made my favorite for Sunday dinner. Ritz chicken and Pecan Pie. YUMMY!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Trunk or Treat

Our ward had every family bring soup and candy. We ate at 6 then paraded around the gym picking up candy at the tables. By 7 we were out the door and headed to Grandma and Crapa's. On the way home we made one stop at the Mickelson's so J could do some trick or treating. Now we are home and the kids are in bed. John wants to watch a scary movie and I have no desire. I hate to be scared.

Audrie this is for you

A Halloween in the past........Remember This? I can't remember how old we were.
Did we go toilet papering looking like that?
I can't figure out how to turn the picture.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

1 year ago

Every night for 5 nights straight J would say "I don't want my tummy cut." John and I would explain that it would be OK. We had a list of events that would happen before surgery and that helped keep him focused on the fun things.
On Friday October 26th my brother Charlie returned home from the Chili Conception Mission.
On Sunday afternoon J asked Charlie for a blessing. My dad, Scott, Brandon, and John joined in. The spirit was fresh from mission field strong. Charlie blessed J that he would recover quickly and have no pain.
Monday night we went trick or treating to a few of our neighbors. We had arranged with them to come a few days early. Then we had dinner at my parents house and carved pumpkins.
Tuesday morning (October 30, 2007) started with the usual 2 high blood pressure pills for J. He asked for food but I had to tell him no. When he asked why I explained that it was the big kidney day. My mom came to the house about 10am to pick up the babies they were 7 months old. After loading them into the her car we left for SLC. We checked in at 12:45. The waiting room was empty. J got to pick from any game system (PlayStation, game cube, Nintendo 64) and he tried them all. There was a craft table so he made a pumpkin. At 2:30pm they gave him some liquid to help him relax. By 3 we were walking behind the Dr. pulling J's bed. We said good bye at the door to the operating room.
We went to get some food and then up to the waiting room. John's parents were there to visit with us. At 4:30 we got a call from surgery and everything was good. At 6 we were told that it would be another hour because they were having complications. At 7pm Dr. Snow walked in, he explained that
laparoscopic surgery went well. He made 4 small incisions and through the lower one he removed the kidney. There was a small mass the size of a quart that he sent to the lab to be tested.
At 8pm John and I went to see J in recovery. He was still out and only waking up to throw up. I went up to the room to pump. By 8:30 he was in his room #3089. John sat up with him most of the night while I slept.
6am he woke up hunger. I told him his kidney was out and he said, "I am so happy." I went out to get him some crackers and juice. We started Lortab at 8am with breakfast. He had bacon. 10:00 he walked down to the Halloween party. By 12pm Dr. Snow & the Urologist had both seen J and given the OK to take him home. We were shocked. We were scheduled to stay for 2 or 3 nights. It took several hours to get the paperwork done for the release, so we went trick or treating around the hospital with the other kids. J insisted that he didn't need a wheelchair, but after only a 1/3 of the way through he was tired.
So my story is very long and extremely detailed, but the point is J was home by 7pm -- 24hours after having his kidney removed.
I want to thank you all for all your love and support over that last year. It has been a roller coaster of emotions. We are grateful for each of you.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


After the twins went to bed we carved a pumpkin with J and made cookies.

Monday, October 27, 2008

8 things tag

I am accepting Becky's tag......

8 TV shows that I watch:

1. Amazing Race

2. Extreme Makeover

3. Biggest Loser

4. Days of our Lives

5. Jon and Kate Plus 8


7. Smallville

8. Decorating Cents

8 Things I did yesterday:

1. Made waffles

2. Didn't do dishes

3. updated blog

4. wrestled with the boys in Sacrament Meeting

5. Sang fun songs in Primary

6. Had Sunday Dinner at my Parents

7. Finished one Christmas Project

8. Spent quality time with John

8 Places that I love to eat:

1. Big J's

2. Olive Garden

3. Chilis

4. Angies

5. Copper Mill

6. Wendy's

7. Arby's

8. Subway

8 Things I am looking forward to:

1. My Birthday

2. Halloween

3. Birthday Shopping with my mom and sister

4. Pecan Pie

5. My mom taking the kids over night

6. Jaren and Sarah's wedding

7. Christmas

8. Snowmobiling

8 Things on my wish list:

1. eliminate John's student loans

2. finished basement

3. a fence around the yard

4. caught up scrapbooks

5. replacement for my lost diamond

6. family vacation to disneyland

7. new furniture

8. maid

8 people I tag

1. John

2-8. anyone who wants to.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Chili Party & Corn Maze

At Aunt Brenda's Chili Party we dressed up the twins as Thing 1 and Thing 2. J was a Pirate.
After having some yummy chili and donuts we went to the Corn Maze in Syracuse.
Here are 7 of the grand kids. Camden, Tanner, Caleb, Jakub, J, Rylie, and James. Wyatt and Lucy were in strollers.
All the kids loved the slides. Here is one of the smaller ones. Perfect for James and Jakub.

The THINGS playing in the ghost.
James waved at everyone he passed on the train. Jakub cried when he got out and the train drove away without him.
By the end of the day the blue hair and mustache were fading, but not the smiles. We all had a great time. Thanks to Grandma Mills for a fun family day.

Pumpkin Bash

It was a again other year that I didn't win the pumpkin bash. But I don't care I had a lot of fun. This year my team was.....Jim, Kenny, Brandon, and Preston. We were in the craft room. I wish there was a picture of our pumpkin with the lights off because it was really cute. We used glow sticks for the ears and the tongue.

My mom and Ina played with all the kids making play dough pumpkins and coloring pumpkins, while the adults were in 3 teams creating. It so great to enjoy the game and not worry about my boys.
Dad and Uncle B tallied the votes. And the winner is......the team from the garage. They gave a POWERFUL performance.

Friday, October 24, 2008


I just finished the apple treats for the pumpkin bash tonight. I made some with chocolate and granola, some with whipped cream frosting and chocolate chips, and the 3rd kind is chocolate peanut butter.
I cut up some apples and dipped them in the chocolate peanut butter for Jakub,
and James. They would suck of the chocolate and give me back the apple and say. "More"