The Preslar Family

The Preslar Family
December 2017

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Boys in a Bucket

This weekend my brother Adam and his family drove here from Boulder for a wedding. The reception was on Friday night, and S came here to play while they were gone. C and S did much better together than on our trip to his house. C got a little sensitive and huffy, but S was so excited about the new turf that I don't think he noticed. They had a pretty great time. One of the best things about having an unlandscaped yard is that there is plenty of mud to dig and play in. I put both boys in grubby t-shirts over their undies, turned on the hose, and let them go for it. There is nothing quite like seeing little boys playing in the mud. They exude joy.

After I let them get completely and totally filthy, it was time for cleansing. I figured we needed to do some sort of pre-rinse before heading straight to the bathtub. So Troy and I filled our big blue gardening bucket with warm water, stripped them down, and plunked them in. This made for some great pictures, and when they started singing opposing "raining" song, it made for a cute little video (see bottom of post), in which you can see C getting huffy and S not noticing.

S stayed pretty late, and so we put him in some of C's jammies and piled everyone into bed for stories. R even climbed in bed and pulled up the covers all by herself. This is significant because she's a notorious covers-hater. She can't stand to have anything on her while she sleeps and will violently kick off anything that's touching even her feet. I thought she was pretty sweet to tuck herself in. Why isn't she pictured in the mud? It turns out she can't stand getting dirty. "Muddy! Muddy! Messy! Hep you!" (help me) Here's the bedtime shot. Cousins are the greatest!

Monday, April 23, 2007

The Duet

This evening, post bath. Yes, I know what you're thinking. "She's going to tinkle on the piano!" Don't worry, the second I took off her diaper before the bath, she tinkled on the floor, so it was already taken care of. CTP has been spending a lot of time at the piano, mostly practicing the theme to "Jaws" or what he calls, "DA da DA da." He'll then compose original themes called "baracuda jaws" and "megaladon jaws" and other types of large marine carnivores. RAP contributes as much as he'll let her.

RAP's latest

RAP has moved on, just briefly, from "Old Donald, a cow, a cow." See if you can figure out what she's singing now:

"pinkal pinkal thtar
howie wagon....are
up high"

Yeah, I'm not sure where the wagon part comes from , but that would be R's rendition of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" that she sung so winningly in the bathtub the other night.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Hasn't this been FUN?

I must say, I feel as if I'm returning from a sojourn in hell. Pardon my French. I think I've had other entries complaining of illness, and I do apologize for adding another, but it's got to be said. Being sick when you're pregnant just isn't fair. Today is day 14 of possibly the nastiest cold I've had in a decade. It's been horrible! And I need you all to feel bad for me! I think the part of any cold I hate the worst is the sore throat, which usually only lasts two days or so - I had one for more than 10 days. And the sinus infections, headaches, no sleeping, the violent, both the kids got it too. And Troy. Today, I still have many symptoms but I at least feel like I'm turning a corner. I really would like to continue moaning and groaning about this, but it doesn't make for a very interesting entry. I'll sum up with this: Let it be known that I have felt really horrid for a lot of days.

I will comment on a few of my favorite kid moments over the past few days. We've had a LOT of down time. I'm really trying hard to not spread this illness too far and wide, though I did let CTP go to school last Tuesday. I couldn't help it - he was having his first big field trip! He was so excited, and his cold wasn't too bad yet. They went to Cactus and Tropicals, a local nursery. My guess was that they were learning about plants, but all I could get him to tell me about it was that he and his friend Issac were detectives looking for clues. I love his creative little mind.

Anyway, one evening after dinner, we were all enjoying some Oreos dipped in milk. I then let the kids watch a show while I did some cleaning up. After a few minutes CTP came running in and very excitedly told me, "Mom. I just saw a preview for Oreos! We HAVE Oreos! THEY'RE MILK'S FAVORITE COOKIE!!!!" As he said this last part he clenched his little fists and enunciated each syllable by shaking his fists in the air. It was so funny. A "preview," by the way, is his word for commercials. He's picked up on a couple of other commercial messages of this type. Perhaps my favorite was a couple of weeks ago I was brushing C's teeth and he stopped and said something along the lines of, "Mom, does this toothbrush have a tongue and gum cleanser? 98% of bacteria are on your tounge and gums." Okay, thanks for the message that I need to turn off the tv!

RAP is really into "Old McDonald." She loves it when we sing it to her, the more verses the better. Little did you know that Old McDonald's farm includes tigers, monkeys, owls, and even the occasional dinosaur. Lately she's started singing it to herself, almost non-stop. Her version goes, "Old Donald, a cow a cow, moo moo moo." She will sing this to her self 50 times in a row, and I love it. You can get her to add a pig or a sheep once in a while, but her focus is on the cows. Then she figured out she could be funny, and sing about silly things on the farm. "Old Donald, a feet, a feet!" or "Old Donald, a Chase, a Chase." Then she took a look at me and sang, "Old Donald, a tummy, a tummy."

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

My Favorite Part

When I made my gender announcement, I forgot to mention my favorite part. CTP, of course, has been certain that he had a brother coming all along. If you have ever taken my advice and read my brother Adam's blog about his son S, you'd know how very very upset S was when his new baby, born in February, turned out to be a girl instead of a boy, or better yet, Flash. C obviously picked up on this because when we told him that he was going to have a brother, his first reaction was, "YAY!!!!!" His second reaction?
"Smith wanted a baby brother, but I'm going to get one first!"
Yeah, no competition there.

Monday, April 09, 2007

It's a....


This morning my mother came over at 8:30 so that Troy and I could make the grueling trek across the street to Salt Lake Regional Medical Center and have an ultrasound of our latest offspring. To tell the truth, I've been almost positive that we were having a girl. This pregnancy has been much more similar to RAP's than to CTP's, and when we heard the heartbeat at one of my appointments, my midwife told me that it was pretty fast, thus much more likely a girl than a boy. Also, and don't laugh, but have you heard of the Chinese gender horoscope? There's a calendar based on the age of the mother and the month of the baby's birth that predicts the gender of the baby. It's been correct for both my kids, and is often correct for friends I know. Well, it said that I was having a girl if the baby was due in September, which my midwife predicted. However, today at the ultrasound, it was determined that I'm farther along than that, and I'm actually due in August - just the day after RAP was due. And yes, the Chinese calendar predicts a boy for me if it's due in August. Funny, huh.

Needless to say, we're very happy. It's a little strange whenever you have to adjust your thinking like this. I really truly thought I was having a girl, had been imagining a girl and planning for a girl, remembering all my favorite little things that RAP wore, thinking of names, etc. And suddenly, that person doesn't exist. It's a boy! I'm really happy that CTP is going to have a brother. I think RAP will probably enjoy being the only girl. Of course, only time will tell us that. I don't have any boy names picked out at all, but it sure is fun for us start thinking about that, and seeing that healthy little body growing and moving around in there. We got to see his little hands in front of his face, and we saw him yawn. He's a kicker, too. Wow. I'm actually getting more excited to meet this person. Of course, this evening when C dumped an entire glass of milk on the floor while R was clinging to my legs and crying, it was hard to imagine throwing a baby in the picture too, but I'm sure we'll all survive, right? RIGHT???? Of course we will.

A Visit to Thanksgiving Point

I've always known that Thanksgiving Point had a great Dinosaur Museum and I've always meant to take CTP down for a visit. However, it's pretty pricey and I just never made the effort to make it happen. Then my friend Emily let me know that Monday nights are only five bucks a person - now that I can manage. So this evening she and I, C and R and Emily's three darling boys piled in her van and made the trek. Wow was it worth it! Of course, I've become of bit of a dinosaur zealot, but I really think it was pretty neat. The displays were set up along a chronological pathway with both skeletons and life-like models combined in realistic settings. C was so ecstatic that he could hardly contain himself. I think he missed most of the museum because he couldn't stop running and running from one display to the next, hardly even pausing to look carefully because he was overcome by all the prehistoric delights surrounding him. There were some wonderful play areas dispersed among the displays as well - including a great water and sand play pool filled with mini toy dino's to scoot around and build mountains for and bury. Really neat.

By the way, on an unrelated topic, I feel the need to let you know that RAP is a genius. She is not yet 20 months, and can recognize a circle, heart, star and triangle, and she also knows the colors yellow, purple, and green. I'm telling you, she's brilliant. Don't you think? C cares very little about learning the letters of the alphabet, but I find that forgivable since at the museum tonight he saw a giant millipede and informed me that it was an "arthroplura." The thing is, I'd be better if he'd stick to just dinosaurs, but he's starting to expand to all prehistoric animals, both pre- and post-mesozoic era. I can't keep up.

Pastoral Filth

We've entered a wonderful time of year. Wonderful, yet so filthy! I no longer work quite so hard to keep my kids busy and happily engaged in meaningful activity...I just open the back door. They both just run outside and spend hours having an absolute riot just getting dirty. We have lots of (for lack of a better word) "wilderness" in our back yard, and lots of currently unused garden space. This means there are mounds and mounds of soft dirt just begging for playing in. A hose usually gets involved as well. I suppose as a mother I should have qualms about this. They really do get so unbelievably dirty - and their clothes are nearly hopeless - thus, they generally end up naked as well. This time of year this will go on for an hour or two or sometimes three, and then they're so cold and dirty that they come begging for a bath. Thus the cycle begins - from a romp in the back yard, me going out and sponging them off to at least get the clods of dirt off, and then running a hot bath for them to play in for another hour or so. Often, the kids would like the cycle to begin again as soon as it's over. I just can't help loving how much they enjoy being outside, no matter the resulting laundry challenges.

I was going to go on to describe two days last week when the filth got out of control when RAP decided to use the tub as her potty not once but twice in a row...but that seemed like maybe more information than anyone would want....

On a different day last week we got the chance to try out our new kite. It's a really cool kite - a big ornate dragon CTP just went nuts over when he saw it. There was just enough breeze to suggest that we might be able to get it off the ground. We made a quick trip to Sugarhouse Park with the famous kite flying hill (the same hill that's famous for death-defying sledding in the winter.) The kite never really took off. I don't know if that was due to the lack of quality in the kite or the breeze, but it was still fun. And one of those happy moments when you watch your family having fun together and remember what all the filth is for. Yes, I thought a great deal about George Banks.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

A Trip to my old Boulder

It's so hard to even know where to begin! I moved to SLC from Boulder, Colorado just before the start of sixth grade in 1984. It was a tough move and my family went through some hard times after we got here (don't worry, we're all okay now:) But each of the four kids in my family have absolutely the fondest of memories of our childhoods in Boulder. Of course, some of us remember a lot more than others, but even saying the word "Boulder" seems to conjure up images of safety and happiness for each of us.

My Brother Adam and his wife Whitley are now living just outside Boulder in a town called Superior - he's a lawyer in a firm in downtown Boulder. They just had their second baby in February, and were planning on blessing her Sunday, March 25. I really wanted to go meet baby L and visit Boulder for the first time since I was 18, and for the second time ever since I moved away. I didn't think it would be possible - I couldn't imagine my kids managing 8+ hours in the car. But my mom and dad urged me to caravan with them, and we made it. Actually, the drive went great. Thanks to a portable DVD player on loan from a friend and my mom in the car with us, the ride was almost the easiest part. It's exhausting to have little kids in a strange town.

I was delighted to meet L - she is a tiny little thing, and sweet as can be. My first thought was that she looked EXACTLY like Adam, but as the week went by she seemed to grown into her own little face. CTP and his cousin STR got to spend a lot of time together, and let's just say that they were the best of times AND the worst of times. There was a lot of fun play and also a little rivalry there that got quite explosive, but there's no need to go into detail. Believe me.

What a thrill to see so many of my old haunts! When we first got to Boulder, there was little I remembered, because we were driving through a part of town that seemed to have been turned into strip-mall heaven, and I was very disappointed. However, we got around to many places, everywhere from my old neighborhoods to the library, from schools I attended to the grocery store I remember best (King Soopers!) What I was really surprised about was what small little landmarks I unexpectedly remembered and realized had meant a great deal to me. For example, our neighborhood of "Spanish Hills" was a couple of miles outside of town. In between were several fields and farms, and there was one specific field always full of cows that sort of marked the point for me when we were officially in or out of town, depending on which direction we were going. When thinking of Boulder, I hardly ever thought of that field, but once I saw it I felt instantly like a 10 year old again. I loved that field, and looked for it every time we went to or from home.

I also really enjoyed learning the layout of Boulder - I never drove there before, and didn't have a very clear picture of the layout of the city in my head. Suddenly to understand where the library was in relation to the Pearl Street Mall - this great outdoor walking mall where we played our instruments as children on weekend evenings - it was so interesting.

Of course the best part was spending time with family, seeing Adam and Whitley happy and getting settled, enjoying the new baby and S's ferocious energy, eating Whitley's mom's good food...ah yes. I could ramble on forever, but I'll put in some photos instead.

R was delighted with L, which made me happy. Usually she has absolute fits of rage and jealousy if she catches me even so much as looking at another baby.

Our house on Caballo Court, in the neighborhood of Spanish Hills. This is the house we lived in when Peter was born, and the house we all remember best. Just looking at this photo makes me want to tell a hundred stories. In my marriage, Troy has always been able to tell me the stories of his youth as we drive around town, and I've never been able to do that. I don't see those places, and I was so sorry Troy wasn't able to join us on this trip. Another time, I hope.

On our third day in town, I insisted that we go on an official outing someplace. We took S with us to visit the Denver Aquarium, which was fantastic. Here is C looking at the otters. There were amazing shark displays, huge turtles, wonderful fish of all kinds, and even a pair of tigers. The highlight was probably feeding the rays. I've never felt anything like it. You held a little dead fishie in between your knuckles in the water and these rays, two and three feet across, would swim up your hand and suck it out. C was much braver than I was. The other highlight was mom and dad buying these massive suckers for the boys.

After the aquarium, we decided to drive home through Golden, Colorado. Yes, home of Coors Beer. Also the home of a train museum that we visited as kids. It's a big yard just packed full of old trains from all ages that you can climb on and walk through.

This is the downtown library. We loved going to this place. Of course, the inside is quite different - completely remodeled, and nothing about that was familiar. I was so glad that the facade at least was the same. Our favorite part of the library was a giant book they kept on the floor of the children's area. It was made of all sorts of fabric, like a crazy quilt, and had several big padded pages that it took a couple of kids to turn. I think it must have finally become a health hazard and been incinerated or something.

Doulgas Elementary School. It looks absolutely exactly the same as it did when I attended. Certainly a boring picture for you, but it takes my breath away.

The Pearl Street Mall is about three blocks of down town Boulder that has been paved in bricks and is an outdoor shopping mall. There are lots of neat little shops, and you can always find someone playing an instrument with the case open before them, hoping for tips. As kids, we did that a couple of times. We were a hit. I remember some summer evenings with acrobats and jugglers and tightrope walkers and everything. It was pretty quiet on the Sunday afternoon we went there, but there were still the two little play areas for kids I recall with absolute clarity and adoration. One has several boulders just for climbing and scampering on. The other has four animals, two stone and two bronze. They were both crawling with kids and I loved seeing my own children taking part.

So that's probably more information than anyone wanted to know. I'm so glad I got the chance to go. I won't say it was easy - we were all exhausted by the end and my kids took about a week to recover. I was going to go visit Peter next, leaving in just two days, but it was too much - sorry, Peter & Sheri! The kids did so great but really needed activity every moment and it was a lot of work. Worth it, though. I'm so grateful to my parents for towing me along - I certainly didn't make the trip easy for them. It was a great chance though, and I was so glad to see Adam's family. Peter, we'll get there soon!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Snotty Even in His Sleep

I'm writing this post partially to procrastinate writing another one - it's now been a week since I returned from a trip with my children and my parents to my home town of Boulder, Colorado (or as CTP says, "Codorado,") and I'm so full of feelings and joys and about 200 pix to chose from I just haven't sat down to write about it yet. Tomorrow.

For tonight, I must tell you that my husband is a very witty person, always quick with a snappy reply or clever response to what you have to say. He does this even in his sleep. He has the uncanny ability to carry on a conversation as if he were awake even when he's not, and many are the times when I have irritatedly reminded him of something we already talked about only to realize that he was asleep when the conversation happened. Some of my very favorite incidents occurred early in our marriage when I was still getting used to his snoring (and before I started snoring myself, apparently and much to my horror.) I'd gently nudge him and say, "Troy, roll over." Once he replied, "how about you roll over instead," and another time he said, "well, which way should I roll?" Snotty, I tell you.

Over the weekend we really didn't even attempt to watch the LDS General Conference. We just wrestle the kids for two straight hours and get frustrated. So we DVRed the whole thing and have planned on watching one talk an evening, starting last night. After we finally got RAP to bed we decided to watch the first talk of the first session, Elder Scott's talk about prayer. Almost as soon as the talk began I looked over at Troy and he was already, uh, ....listening with his eyes closed. If you know what I mean. I said in disbelief, "are you already asleep?" He said in a perfectly normal conversational tone, "No, I'm just saying my prayers." I sheepishly left him alone, until this morning I mentioned it and he started laughing out loud because he didn't remember saying that - of course, he really was asleep.