Friday, September 15, 2006

Inspiring Israel

Riding Herbert the Lion
Camping with Dad
Eating hotdogs
Playing outside Organizing cereal boxes

Our Favorite Kiddo is always finding something to be excited about!

Electric Eliza

OK most of the time Eliza is a baby on the edge full of electric energy. She's our favorite little darling with such a cute smile, full of oversized teeth for her tiny face. We are proud of her for taking her first step on Sept. 12, 2006. She's good at wearing herself out, of course Israel her big brother makes sure she's always entertained.

Zion's Park Adventure

We visited Zion's Park and then climbed some in St. George. We're getting very good at climbing and last night Robin climbed a 5-11B at the indoor climbing gym called The Quarry in Provo where she teaches Yoga twice a week. We also hiked through Mystery Canyon and repelled down 12 repels with a final repel into a river and a fantastic 120' repel into a spring of water with ferns growing all around. If you ever get the opportunity AND you have someone like Chuck that knows how to keep you safe- don't miss that opportunity! Thanks for Michelle for watching Israel and Eliza for us! We wish we had pictures from Mystery Canyon, but we didn't want to ruin our camera.

Climbing in St. George, Utah

Fun pictures of us climbing on some rocks! We've gotten better since then. Stan attempted a 5-11D but it he didn't get too far (not pictured here). Stan enjoyed the bird-life in Southern Utah. We're climbing with my siblings Chuck, Diana (his wife), and Amanda.

Hurriane Katrina Aftermath April '06

Here are some pictures from our trip to the Mississippi Gulf Coast in Biloxi, I think 9 months after Hurricane Katrina blew threw.

Monday, June 12, 2006

More MM

Israel loves PeeWee the teacup chawawa that our close neighbors the Hollingsworth's adopted last month. There is a lot a squeeling and running around in circles when these two play together. Potty treats and book reading only worked so long for Israel. Now he's watching Dora movies while sitting on the Dora potty. No more fighting to sit on the potty, but he's also not telling us when he has to go yet. We hope that will come soon. We've been going strong for a week and a half though- that's something! Eliza has two teeth now- both bottom teeth are in. She's such a doll. Here's a picture of her in her Sunday outfit. We tried to get a picture on both of them before church, but Israel is into blocking out Eliza at the moment. Last week was the end of normalicy. We turned in all our notices at work and this week is the end of work for us- AND our time to pack pack pack. We're setting aside what we're living on for the next month and packing up everything else. We're going to be hating our clothes:) We found an endanged bird on Sat. on our trip to Ovett, MS. Israel loved using the binoculars- and looking at Dad's bird book. We'll make a birder out of him yet. After seeing the red cockaded woodpecker we picked gallons of blueberries in Sandhill, MS. Stan tried to tell our friend, whose farm we were on about our bird siting. It went something like this Stan: (said with great excitement) Have you ever heard of a red cockaded woodpecker?! Friend: Ya'll can call them whatever you want, we call them red headed woodpeckers. So about this corn I'm . . . Stan: (weak attempt while farmer explaining the poor dry soil)Well actually, the red cockaded woodpecker doesn't have much red on it. pause. Well, thanks for letting us pick you blueberries. Friend: Glad to have you. We don't pick much anymore and otherwise they just go to waste. Say, our cucumbers . . . End of conversation blip So far we've had blueberry cobbler, blueberry pancakes, and blueberry buckle. We've barely made a dent. We'll have lots to consume in this one week:) We're excited to soon be seeing all our family over the next month as we travel to our new home. Oh, if anyone knows how to remove crayon from beige carpet I'd love to know. Israel was a super artist this week. More next time . .

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Mommy Mumbles Again

This past week has included many new experiences. For the first time ever I contacted my Senator regarding an issue- and asked them to vote for the marriage amendment. I just sent an email, and to both MS senators (I'm not sure which one is mine). It felt good to do.

Our most exciting family news is in regards to Israel. On Monday we decided we'd had enough of this anti-potty training. So, we took a trip to where else but Toys R Us for the perfect potty for Israel. He adores Dora (Dorda) and so we finally picked, after assembling 2 of training potties, a padded seat that fits onto you toilet that is Red and covered with Dora, Boots, Backpack, and Map. Our courage was a little low, so our efforts at home didn't start until Friday for a big weekend push. With a bit of resistance I got Israel onto his potty seat and read him a book until he peed in the potty. Then of course we had a big celebration- high fives, and a treat. We didn't have any candy except mini toppings for yogurt, so I gave him some of those and called Stan to pick up treats on the way home. He got mini snickers. Much nicer than I would have gotten. They work like a charm. Israel can now pee on demand for those little suckers. He's always loved to flush the toilet and today I couldn't get him to get off. We're very excited, taking him about every hour and a half. Stan and I are walking around so proud like we finally figured out the trick (Dora) and giving ourselves a lot of credit. It's not that Israel's finally ready or anything that he's doing or that we've been praying for potty training to work- those couldn't be the reasons:) Now we just have to keep it up.

In getting the house ready to sell and for viewings Israel was a big helper- especially with the sweeping!

That precious little outfit is 0-3, from Grandma Aschraft, and it still fits!

This Sunday our stake put on a huge production "Let the Morning Come" about the restoration of the gospel and a celebration of Joseph Smith. We've been practicing for 2 months, chior, orchestra, speaking parts etc. The audiance filled both gyms in our stake center- mostly members, but also curious people from the community, family friends, and investigators. We advertised in the newspaper. Anyhow, I sang 1st alto and had the speaking part of Lucy Mack Smith- mother of the beloved prophet. I only had to memorize and say 4 lines, but boy was I nervous! The cast fasted (we ate before the production) that we'd be able to convey the Spirit, to remember our lines, and appropriately convey our love of the Prophet. (We hadn't been able to run straight through in our dress rehearsal Sat. evening) It was so powerful-everyone remembered their lines, we sang with strength and my testimony was deepened as was the audience. I've been reading Lucy Mack's biography of Joseph- excellent read.

We also have a new tooth in the family. Eliza, at 8 months has finally cut her first tooth- bottom right. Bottom left will probably cut this week too.

How we love our children!

Love to all!
More Mommy Mumblings coming up next week!

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Hall Farm

Hello Everyone!
We are preparing soon to leave the only home our children have known. Our little Fam is kind of like a Farm only we're raising kids. Israel seems to think farm animals are ubiquitous anyways, and recently Israel pointed out a Hippo at church! Not to mention tigers, elephants, and monkeys that serreptiously appear and disappear throughout our neighborhood.
Eliza seems to think that life is all about finding someone to hold her; which is delightful of course. And she is a precious and beautiful little girl with a spirit that softens hearts and reaches out to everyone.
We're excited to leave for BYU on June 28, but first we're stopping by the Cole's Knobb Manor in Check, Virginia!
We are so proud of our little family, and so grateful for the restored gospel of Christ that makes our family eternal.

Dauphin Island, Alabama

Dauphin Island April 24, 2006
Robin executing some beautiful yoga poses on the gorgeous white sands of Dauphin Island, Alabama
We are so excited for Robin who is beginning a 6 month yoga certification program in Salt Lake City starting the end of June.

Mommy Mumblings

I have been a mother for 2 years, 7 months, and 24 days. Since that time I've planned to create Mommy Mumblings, a weekly journal, or post, of my family. Like most things I've planned to do as a mother, they take a bit longer to get started than planned, and even longer to finish! I'll not try to go backward except in stating that my two children Israel Ashcraft Hall, and Eliza Mariam Hall were both born in the wonderful month of October, Israel on the 4th (2003) and Eliza the 3rd (2005). We've yet to have a birthday to figure out how we're going to handle that one! Both were born healthy- Israel on the top of the charts and Eliza on the bottom. In the midst of moving and the stresses associated with it, this is the first week in 2 months that we've had a breather- we have a buyer and no inspections occurred. Stan, my husband, can't get over how relaxed and beautiful I look this week. (I haven't minded the compliments.) Given some time to relax, to sleep (as much as 7 month old Eliza lets me), and having given myself permission to not stress has been wonderful. As much as possible I've tried to keep far from my thoughts the home inspection on Tuesday, and the packing, and all else involved. Obviously I need to keep working on this one. The added freedom has let me enjoy Israel and Eliza this week. I've been more patient and not had that guilty feeling because I'm letting Israel watch "Dorda" one more time while I make the house sparkle or putting Eliza in her swing again so I can mop the floor. Instead we've played outside more- my sidewalk drawings are hard to beat, and I can safely cross the street to visit Dixie, the little puppy across the street. Not only that, but Israel will hold my hand, pause at the curve, and look carefully up and down the street for cars, "all clear" and a strong yank come at the same time tells me it's safe to cross.he breaks into a run about halfway if I don't hold on tight enough- he's so excited he started squeeling as we enter the yard. Eliza and Dixie are pals. Dixie thinks Eliza is a good kisser, and I have to agree having received a few wet ones myself. If I were a dog, they'd be pretty good, sloppy ones. Eliza has discovered how to move- she's such a crawler and delights in pulling herself up- until she realizes she can't do anything else except fall down- at which point she cries out repeatedly. She's started sitting at the table with the family- Israel's out of his booster seat. He's so tall for a 2 year old. Eliza loves to be with us for dinner. We can't get away with eating without her. On Friday we tried to have a candlelight dinner before I & E were asleep. We're not moving our candles, so we're using them- we can't even burn them in Wymount Terrance - it's like the student housing is set to the same fire codes as our church buildings. Not a match is to be lit, not a lighter to be flipped, not a candle to be burned. Anyway, Eliza and Israel determined we weren't to eat alone both coming to the table to eat our delicious spagetti. Eliza sucked the sause off the noodles and devoured the bread from Daddy's lap that night. He's a big of a softy for his little girl. I can't blame him- her face lighting up, arms flapping, and legs kicking when she sees us after an absence. Thank goodness for our children, without them I might still be working a desk job and not found such joy in the home, or taken the time to discover other joys in my life- such as cake baking and yoga. I'm an oxygen mask mother, I take care of myself so I can take care of my babies and my Stan. Until next week . . . Hopefully I'll post bits of the week, joys in the home, and more Mommy Mumbling, so come on back!
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