I don't want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with long perfectly manicured fingernails. I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking the kids to scout camp. I want there to be a smudge of peanut butter on my shirt from making sandwiches for a sick neighbors children. I want to be there with a little dirt under my fingernails from helping to weed someone's garden. I want to be there with children's sticky kisses on my cheeks and the tears of a friend on my shoulder. I want the Lord to know I was really here and that I really lived.
~Marjorie Pay Hinckley~

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Star Wars Party

I think the whole birthday party thing is getting out of control! I love birthdays way too much! Kaden wanted a Star Wars birthday party this year, so this is what we did.

We had about 15 kids that came, mostly boys. As they came, they made their "lightsabers". I bought pipe insulation and wrapped the end in duct tape. Then I had colored tape that they could use to decorate their light sabers.

After all the light sabers were ready, we had lightsaber training. Each child had a balloon that they had to keep in the air using only their light sabers. This got a little tricky when the wind picked up, but it was still fun! Then they each picked a partner and had a duel. The only rule was only light sabers could hit light sabers. No hitting people on purpose.

After light saber training, we had blaster training. Each "padawon" was given a blaster and had to use it to shoot at pictures of different star wars villans. Each villan was worth a different amount of points. The kids probably could have just played water guns for the rest of the party and been happy. They had a lot of fun with those.

Next I divided them into teams and had each team build a death star with chalk. Then they had to use their blasters to destroy the other team's death star.

The original plan was to use water balloons, for bombs, but I ran out of time to fill the water balloons. It would have worked better to use water balloons, because the kids got frustrated with how slow it was.

Next they had to free Han Solo from Carbonite. I froze little army men in blocks of ice, and they had to get them out however they could.

We then took a food break and went to the Cantina for Jabba Hut pizza and Yoda Soda. They could choose to have their Yoda Soda with or without Dagobah Sludge (lime sherbet.)

Next we had training with Master Yoda. I set up an obstacle course they had to complete with Yoda on their backs. They had to battle the Storm troopers (buckets with pictures of Storm troopers they had to kick over.)

Fly their fighter into a black hole ( a frisbee with a picture of a star fighter on it they had to throw into a bucket).

Make it across the lava planet ( a red tablecloth with paper plates for stepping stones.)

Finally they were ready for battle. I made a Darth Maul pinata by buying a Spiderman pinata and spray painting it black, then taping Darth Maul's face to it. It turned out pretty creepy. The little girls I was tending that morning were pretty freaked out.

They were blind folded so they had to use the force to fight Darth Maul. It worked out perfect because the last boy to have a turn was the one who broke it open.

We ended by eating light saber cupcakes. The boys got to take home their light sabers, blasters, and all the candy they got from the pinata.
Kaden said that it was his best party ever ands thanked me for being the most awesome birthday mom! That's why I do these crazy parties. It is worth it to see my kids so happy and to be the most awesome birthday mom!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Kaden's Birthday

Kaden's Birthday was pretty much a party all weekend. His birthday fell on a Sunday, so we had his friend party on Friday. On Saturday we went out to see my sister Larissa's new baby and he went shopping to spend all his birthday money and out to dinner. Then Sunday was his actual birthday. It was also ward conference that day and the Stake President invited the bishopric over that evening for dessert and socializing, so everyone there sang to him too. What a fun weekend!

Blowing out his candles.

His Star Wars cake.

Opening presents. He got an Air Hog Chopper and a Star Wars Transformer.
I cannot believe it has been 10 years since he was born. Where has all the time gone? Kaden is a great kid; he is just naturally good. He always does the right thing, not because we want him to, but because it is the right thing to do. I don't know if that made any sense, but I really don't know how to explain it. He is also so kind and is always concerned about everyone's feelings. He doesn't like it when people are being picked on and stands up for others. His teacher this year always commented on the amount of integrity he has and how unusual that was for a 4th grader. He is a straight A student, especially excelling in science. Happy Birthday Kaden! We love you!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Gone Easterin'

Easter for us Emery County folk is a big deal, and because of that , I have always loved Easter weekend! We have always done all the Easter Bunny/ Easter Egg stuff on Sat, so that Sunday could be all about our Savior and His resurection, and that is something I have continued with my own children. In fact, we have always gone to my parents house for Easter, but because of Aubree's ballet recital Friday night, this is the first year the Easter Bunny had to find us at our house. Tyson was really worried about this, but luckily he did find us, so he was quite relieved! He did have to find new hiding places for the candy, because we weren't at Grandma's

Dividing up the booty. Glad I look so cute in my PJ's!

Cambree was more interested in what was inside her basket. She didn't waste any time breaking into the candy. Each kid got a movie and a book.

We then headed over to Grandma's for some good old Emery County Easterin'! It really is a verb where I come from. Everybody heads out to the San Rafael for good food and a whole lotta egg rollin'! I was so excited that all my siblings and their families (other than my sister Larissa's husband who was in the Bahamas) were there for the weekend. We have so much fun when we all get together! Here are all the kids (other than Brennen and Cambree, who were asleep in the car) at Buckhorn Wash. It is a cool place with some Indian writings.

After Buckhorn wash, we found a hill to roll our eggs down. In the Larsen family, the term roll is used loosely, as the eggs always seem to end up flying through the air. I blame my Grandma Sitterud for that one; she always used to start the egg fights when we were kids! Here are Bruce, Aubree, and Cambree with some cousins rolling eggs.

Tyson making the hike back up the hill. Grandpa picked a really steep one this year!

Kaden plotting his next move.

Brennen after a really good throw!

No trip to the desert would be complete without a stop at the wedge! We actually haven't been there for a few years, so my kids were way excited to go again!