Friday, November 12, 2010

Cancun, Family and Friends

I'm feeling ungrateful gratitude. Wait, let me start over...

Mike is involved with Dish Network and Direct TV. Because he and all the rest of Dish One/Bioguard (our pest control company) work so hard and are so good at what they do, Mike and I have gone on numerous trips recognizing him and the rest of the hard-working guys for their accomplishments. I've been to Bahamas (3 times), Florida Keys, Istanbul, Ephesus (ruins are AWESOME!), Belize, Cozumel, Puerto Vallarta, Greece, Italy, Pompei!!, and just recently Direct TV sent us to Cancun.

So here comes the ungrateful part. I'm DONE! I feel guilty leaving kids, I miss them, and honestly, if you've been to one tropical island, you've been to them all. Same souvenirs, same water, same beaches, same little kids trying to sell you the same little flutes (it breaks my heart), and although Europe is cool, I think I'm not the traveling kind......yet. I think it goes back to my early days when I would read in my room for hours doodling and thinking of those boys I was interested at the time. I'm comfortable where I live. I still think about that house on John Day where I grew up till I was in third grade.

Here is the grateful part. All of the help we get with our kids! Uncle Jeremy and Auntie Robyn watched Brock and Taycie. Taycie threw up one day, Brock diarreahed in his underwear more than once. Oh. My. Goodness. Awards, anyone? And when Robyn's parents were in town and they needed to get away, there was Brigitte to watch them and take them to Farm Country and show them a good time. Cason and Rhett were with Jeremy and Nadia Jackson, some good friends of ours. Don't worry, Cason threw up one night, as well. While there, my boys were treated to Farm Country, Home Depot's building center, Swimming!, parks, rock climbing and an actually sweet woman instead of their cranky old mom! I just couldn't have asked for better people to take care of my kids. I'm am grateful for their willingness and comments of "We'll take them anytime!" My heart is full because of them, not Cancun.

So here's some news....I'm pregnant for the 5th......yes, 5th time! Number 5 is due June 18th! Mike is ready to take the fetal position himself, but we can do anything with the Lord's help......right? RIGHT!!?? 5 kids 6 and under, and before you ask, yes, we planned it!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Family Pics 2010

It took so long to download these that now I have no energy to write commentary. Just know I was sweating by the time we were done taking pictures. www.sanaejames.com did the pics, she is amazing and when we move (when, not if) I might have to come back to Utah just to have our pics taken.














Wednesday, August 18, 2010

End of Summer Slump

Other than Cason and Mike's birthdays, we have a pretty boooorrrriiiinnnggg August. So here is just a few very bbbooooorrrrriiiinnnggg pictures of things that have occupied our August thus far:

Who slayed the poodles? I think the job was left half done, as evidenced by the clumsily disposed of corpse of the standard.

If you like laundry, you'll love my house.
Four days worth of laundry for the Hammonds.

And for the grand finale......Cason's tan!
Sorry Cason! I had too! Don't forget, you said I could!

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Looongest Vacation

So here is what happened:

7 hour trip to Garden Valley, Idaho (without Mike).
Whitewater rafting
Ziplining
Summer outdoor Theater
Card Playing

When Mike got there, Taycie had to have him sleep with her in the tent.
Uncle Josh reading to Taycie and Eliza. As far as I'm concerned, a reunion just isn't a reunion without Waldo.
5 hour trip to Kennewick.
The SPLASH PARK!! Cason, Rhett, Maddox, Brock and Taycie taking a breather before REALLY getting wild.
Picking a nose while wearing Uncle Evan's shoes. Talented? I think so..
And the wonderful ride home.... 10 hours, to boys who LOVE to scream at each other and no, I repeat....NO DVD PLAYER!! We made it with my sanity barely in tact. (Again, Mike wasn't there.)
A quiet moment captured by Cason between the screams.
BORED
REALLY bored
I'm glad we were able to spend so much time with family. I'm glad we were safe. I'm glad the "creep" (what Taycie called the creek behind our cabin) never came and got us out of our beds.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Money, Money, Money

I wish I had one of these growing in my backyard!

A lot of you might laugh at this, so let me back up.

When I married Mike, he sold pest control and sold it well. He now owns a part of a Pest Control company, BioGuard Pest Control, while also owning the majority of Dish One Satellite, a company he started with a partner. He is a hard worker and I knew even before we got married that I wouldn't see him very often and that we would always be blessed financially.

Well, we were shaken up a little (okay, ALOT) when we got the recent appraisal on our house back yesterday. Okay let me back up again...

I miss having family close


I want my mom close. I want to go to the grocery store with my sisters. I want my brother to be able to see his nieces and nephew. My dad and I have been on the hunt for the perfect piece of property in Kennewick for me, one of my sisters and my parents to build our houses on. Okay, now on to the appraisal...

Let's get personal. We bought our house for 420,000 in June of 2007. It seems sooooooo ridiculous....NOW. It feels me with anger.......NOW. Our house has just appraised for 290,000. AAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!

Goodbye dreams of living with my family. Goodbye hope of a life filled with free babysitters (I already promised I wouldn't abuse you!) We are here to stay awhile.

Here is my meager attempt to be positive:
I love the ward, friends, theater, canyons, eating, Fourth of July and support that Utah has to offer.

On a side note, and since Mike hardly ever reads this blog.....he is wavering with having a baby! He feels the responsibility of Fatherhood acutely. He is an invovled father and because of that fact, another baby with a low appraisal is just too much for him to handle.....

Poor dear.

We are still going to try soon, so if you see or talk to him, a little encouragement would be appreciated. I have faith everything will turn out right. Because of this, I decided that if we have twin girls (I'm just sayin'!) their names will be

Aniston and Faith (because we need it to survive!)
(I thought this was especially appropriate because I want to use cloth diapers with the next one)

I don't think it would ever dare to be a boy, but just in case, I got my bases covered with

Cache (pronounced Cash). Have a great day!!!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

My Mom's Side

Did you know I'm Mormon? Well, I am. My mom wasn't raised Mormon or "LDS". She converted when she was 19.

My maternal grandpa thought our church was a "business". My mom was married to my dad in the Salt Lake City Temple.

Her parents were not there.

My mom's brother, uncle Jim, was around when the first three nieces were born. (Me and my sisters) Shortly after my brother was born my uncle received a pamphlet about overpopulating the Earth.

My mom took his chance of having children by having 5, or so he thought.

That pamphlet put the idea into his head that severed our relationship.

Just before my Grandma died in October, he started coming around and being friendly. We just met in Spokane this last weekend to spread Grandma's ashes.

This is Uncle Jim now. Shown with Erin's first, Eliza.

If anyone can unite a family, it's definitely Eliza!

We chose to spread Grandma's ashes along one of the trails she hiked. She was an avid hiker and her hiking group actually made an award with a pair of her most used hiking shoes. They had holes everywhere.
Grandma had such a reverence for fun. Kids are supposed to have FUN!! I love the stories of my mom's childhood because they include memories of traveling out of the country and floating down rivers. In her memory, I will try to seek tranquil, outdoor freshness and remember that fun memories will always take precedence over sad ones.

Here's to Grandma. Here's to FUN!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Have you met....


My dogs?

This is Paris

A standard poodle. She only shows her good side to her family. She barks at any newcomer to the house, and won't let them touch her. She watches over the children and is the kindest wrestling partner Brock and Rhett will EVER have.

This is Brody.

A miniature poodle. He is that dream dog you wish you always had. He follows me around and whenever I sit he is quick to jump on my lap. He never barks, or chews things, just wants to be loved curled up next to someone.

This is Jenna.
A small standard poodle. She eats socks. She could be a professional sock-eater. I could be the professional sock-poop-picker-upper. That should and does sum up Jenna.

Did I mention my dogs are going to make me a lot of money? They better. I sure have spent a ton on them.

Go here www.whispervalleypoodles.com to see more of how I spend my time.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

SHOOT!!

Kids.
I thought after I had Rhett that we were done, done, done.
Now I feel like another one.
Oh, here we go!!

Bottles, diapers (more? Whimper, whimper)
That lovely guessing game entitled:
"Who knows why they are crying?"

So worth it.
You know I've already thought of names and I'm not even prego.

Girl:
Aniston Kay

Boy:
Joel
Packer (family name)
Dillon
Keegan
Kian

Wish me luck.
(Wish Mike more luck!)

P.S. Can you guess which baby this is?


Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer= Russian Olive Trees and Frozen Cookies

MMMMMM! Have you ever smelled a Russian Olive?
If you don't think you have, I bet you are wrong.
Whenever I am on the freeway passing American Fork and Pleasant Grove, I can roll down the windows and let my nose fill with the freshness.
I swear all my troubles are scared away.
Russian Olives are my troubles' enemy.


Confession: I bought these at Costco.
Not one was baked.

Instead they were devoured as "frozen cookies".
That's right, a whole box of cookie dough was eaten within 5 days.

The culprits:
Cason
Taycie
Brock
Rhett
.
.
.
.
and me.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Oh, yes I did!!


What???!!! I NEVER make purchases like this, you know, the "see-something-you-like-don't-tell-your-husband-get-the-card-before-you-change-your-mind" kind of purchase. I usually give myself plenty of time to let the want become a discarded thought. But here's the great part (I think)....I don't regret it!! Cason is going to Kindergarten this fall at a school in bike distance and Taycie got into their preschool program, so I will be taking two kids there and would love to ride bikes there with room for Rhett and Brock. So, yes, I shouldn't have, but I DID!!

Don't forget to read on about NieNie!!

NieNie Dialogues


I was asked to pick a woman to portray for an little program we are doing at Girls' Camp next week. I chose to tell Stephanie Clarks story. I had never heard of her or her blog but from the little I heard, I knew she would be perfect, so I delved into her blog after the kids went to bed. It wasn't long before the tears came. I was crying for a mother who grieves for a life gone. What's so much more though, is what she celebrates. She loves her family, especially her husband. She shares the gospel, she rejoices in temples. If I keep going the floodgates will open again. Please read her blog! nieniedialogues.blogspot.com And please read March 23, 2009. I promise if you do, you will go about your day a little differently. I hope, hope, hope I do.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Trying to get there

Will I ever get there? Children who can communicate feelings with words instead of shouts, screams, crying, and whining (ohhhhh..the WHINING!)
The Dream Home I've been obsessing over...
The garden with corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries and so much more...
My future pool table, you know, the ones where you can put a ping pong table on top...
A pool with an automatic cover...
A session of Settlers of Catan with my kids, instead of begging my brother to bring his roomates over...
A work schedule for Mike with numbers ranging from 9 to 5...
Just a little land...nothing under an acre..
Kids who sit ALL the way through church coloring or reading...
Diaper free? No that's too much to ask. ONE in diapers...

Is it an unachievable dream or too much to strive for? I don't know. What I do know is what we've already achieved. Are you ready to RUUUMMMMBBBLLLEEE??!! Da da da duh da da da.. daaaaa.....

Children who sweetly profess their love without pride or provocation.
A home big enough for us and those who need help.
A JOB first of all, second of all one that fills my husband with satisfaction and confidence.
A kidney shaped pool that has no automatic cover, but drains my kids' energy and teaches them to swim "SUPER-FAST", just like Rocket from Little Einsteins.
Kids who relish everything they learn in church and can see everything literally, the way religion should be seen.
Children who depend on me for almost all decisions.

I think I'm good.

Don't you think for a second I'm going to give up on the first hopes. It's all a matter of time and appreciating what you have NOW so you can appreciate what you have later, too. :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hammond House Mornings

video

I thought I would give you front row seats to the show I get most mornings. Cason is our little athlete and we are glad Taycie tries! Notice Cason's Kung-Fu/breakdancing moves. I think it would go well with a good wholesome Techno beat, if I ever let him listen to it. Taycie is just happy to involve Ammon, one of our house guests.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Our Dream Home....Well, mine at least!


If you know even just a little about me, you know I'm obsessed with floor plans. Here is the end of the search...I think!

I love everything!

It's not for everyone. Just me. I think I'm going to add a basement with a storage room and another multi-purpose room. Waddya think?

My Family


Still a perfect staircase!



Rhett. Happy to be with siblings, happy to be with dad, happy to be with mom. Happy!



Brock. Fiercely loyal, Snuggle bug, great screamer.



Taycie. No pretenses, true to herself, puffs dad up, respects mom.



Cason. OBEDIENT, honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous. My straight arrow.

Valentine's Day


Mike: "The Daff-O-Dillies, or whatever, are supposed to bloom on Valentine's Day!"

I love, love, love my husband.
Every Valentine's Day I tell him not to get me any flowers because it costs too much and they don't really mean that much to me.
But every Valentine's he never fails to purchase those over-priced, beautiful flowers.
.
.
.
I'm glad he does.
.
.