Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Our Version...

Of the answers to the Christmas letter :)
** if you didn't get the original you-fill-in-the-blanks-card, that means we don't have your address, or I am just plain brainless :)  (If you do want one, shoot me your address and I can still pop it in the mail!)

Merry Christmas 2010!!

It has been quite an eventful year in the Brewer household.  We moved to a new house and put down roots in Rochester.  We've done much working, playing, and general frolicking.

We didn't add any new members to the family, but our children keep growing faster and faster every day!

Seth, our oldest by a whopping 3 minutes, turned 8, got Baptized, and is in 3rd grade.  He loves spies, ninjas, and anything to do with light sabers, especially those from Star Wars.

Sarah, also 8, like Seth got baptized at our family reunion in Wyoming.  She is a very talented artist and loves to play with her friends.  She and Seth play the violin, although they don't like to practice.

Ben, age 5, just started kindergarten and has discovered a whole new world now that he can read.  He recently started playing the cello.

Joshua age 3, is extremely active, and keeps mom on her toes with his various antics.

Elizabeth just turned 1, started walking, can scream like a pterodactyl, and loves to snuggle with her blanket in mom or dads arms.

Jerry has been working at Mayo Clinic for over a year, and is loving it!  He cuts out skin cancer, and has been known to slice off a mole or two on the side.

Jen is still teaching aerobics, writing a book, and most of all tending to her kiddos.

As this Holiday Season approaches, we are most importantly grateful for the Gift of our Savior, Jesus Christ, and hope that this Christmas Season finds you all healthy and happy!

Happy Holidays!

The Brewer Bunch

Saturday, December 11, 2010

We have never been accused...

... of doing things the easy way.

And Today was no exception.
Well, let's back up a bit first:
-- We have been in the house since April
-- With a 3 car driveway, we have said probably every month, "we should really get a snow blower before winter"
-- After our first storm last week and shoveling aforementioned driveway, again statement of, "ya know, we should really get a snow blower"

Fast forward to today:
-- Blizzard warning turns into a full fledged blizzard
-- we decide it's a great day for making some deliveries
-- only get stuck twice - one of those in front of our own house trying to get back into our (already shoveled twice and now showing no signs of shoveling) driveway

-- dig out, get the car in to have hubby say he is going to go finish up some more errands
-- me ask if he can just stay and do the errands on Monday (this statement did come back to haunt him)
-- me offer to help take the seats out of the van so he can get a snowblower (hint hint ;)  ).
-- hubby still unsure that we need one, says he's going to take the smaller car
-- me say probably not such a good idea, it's lower than the van and can get stuck easier

-- a few minutes later I look out the window to see hubby... in his car... right by our driveway... stuck

-- walk out to shovel out again and say, "the thing I want more than anything in the world for our anniversary is a snow blower"
-- we get the car unstuck and he's on his way
-- get a call a while later and hear, "I think I should have brought the van, this car is too low and gets stuck easy..."
-- starts getting dark - learned that all snowplows for the county have been called off due to the wind and blizzard
-- get another call:  hubby stuck at the base of hill
     (side note:  our house is at the top of quite a big hill - 2 ways to get here - both have quite a steep incline... so I guess you could say it really is "uphill both ways"... )
--- the good news is that he has a snowblower!
--- bad news - there is no way that the truck he got from home depot to bring it home is going to make it up the hill.
--- he tries the other hill.  Nothing.
--- we deliberate and decide to have me walk down the hill, walk the snow blower home while he takes the truck back to get his car.

--- tell kids I'm heading down the hill and will be right back.
--- walking down hill and into the wind and freezing snow gives me a whole new respect for the pioneers.
--- get to the truck to have both of us realize there is no way either one of us can lug the 100+ pound snow blower up the hill.  load it back in the truck, Jerry heads back to home depot.
--- I walk back up hill to home, only to find that within the time frame I stepped out, Joshy has clogged the toilet and water has flooded the bathroom, hallway, and halfway into the kitchen.  (seriously??!  Enough with the water issues already!!!)
--- clean up water (and kind of sort of lose it with the kids, who all just stood there watching the water getting spread farther and farther without putting down a single towel), get another call...
--- hubby tried a different plan (other than the one discussed about parking at gas station at bottom of hill and walking up, because the car wouldn't make it over the drifts, which now reached about knee height in the middle of the road)... and was stuck half way up hill.
--- after trying for quite a while, finally unloaded the groceries he had in the car, and walked the rest of the way - kids all bundled up and run out to meet him and help carry bags.
--- we all head back to car (yes, even 3 yo and baby are bundled up.
--- all kids in stuck car, us trying to shovel, push, rock and move car any which way.
--- sweet soul with snowblower comes and blows us a tire path up rest of the hill - we make it to the entrance of cul de sac.
--- get stuck.  again.
--- shovel.  again. thinking, 'wow, this would go so much faster with a snow blower... which we now own... that at one point in time was oh so close to our house... but is now sitting back at the store...'
--- another sweet neighbor takes pity and comes out with another shovel in hand to help dig path through the road and into driveway... then helps us push and shove and maneuver the car sliding and slipping
--- finally getting it into our driveway and garage
--- backwards and crooked
---  but in.

Nope - never accused of the simple, logical way of doing things.

...P.S. as I got in, defrosted, and opened the mail, this picture pours out of one of the envelopes...

Yep, true story.  Irony at it's best.  (Doncha just miss Minnesota like crazy, Marissa??!)

Friday, December 3, 2010

The Law of Natural Consequences...

... are beautiful when it helps to teach the children a lesson...

... like this morning, for instance, when I sent the boys up to shower
     (after Seth whined about having to take once, since 'we took one yesterday!')
... and they asked if they could take a tubo tub
... and I relented (something I would live to regret)
... and as I sat emailing friends trying to work out a babysitting swap to volunteer in the kids classrooms
     (see?!  that's what I get for trying to volunteer!)
... Sarah brought down Elizabeth, who was sopping from head to toe in her pj's after just walking by the bathroom
... apparently from the 'tidal wave' that was coming from the bathtub of the boys...
... and I walked up to find not simply a turbo tub... but a whole bathroom sized swimming pool
   (are you feeling a little de ja vou-ish about now... wasn't my last post about something to do with waters and bathrooms??!!)

... instead of ranting and raving, this time I simply had the boys get towels and clean up their own mess, every nook and cranny of their mess
    (okay, so I still ranted and raved a smidge while they were cleaning up their own mess... )

... but that's not the law that really sunk in with Seth.
... nope, the beauty of it came back in the way that because of the extra clean up time, we were late getting to school    (okay, true confession, I took my time a wee bit getting the little ones ready to make sure that we would be a little late, just to drive home the lesson... hey, I never said the law of natural consequences couldn't use a little help every now and then!!)

... and this child HATES to be late, especially to school. 
... as in, he would rather stay in the car and hide all day then have to walk in late to school 
   (... those of you know know me, know for sure that this trait came straight from his dad!!!)

So as we pulled up late to school, I simply said, "well, the extra clean up time made us late for school... I guess you'll think twice about making such a big mess in the tub next time."
Judging from the look of horror on his face as he made the walk of shame to the school door, I think for once he maybe kinda sorta learned the lesson :).

Child mess: a little inconvenient  
Motherhood moment of triumph: priceless!