The Preslar Family

The Preslar Family
December 2017

Thursday, June 19, 2014

End of the Year

I'm realizing how many things I meant to mention in one post or another that, when put all together, pretty much sum up the last month of school.  We did lots.  And lots.  This will really be more of a photo essay, but that's fine with me.

Let's see - let's start with Bundle.  She graduated from preschool.  I'm sure Jim Gaffigan would have something snide and hilarious to say about attending your kid's 2nd graduation by the time your child turns five.  But it was kinda sweet - Bundle is done with preschool!  I can't believe it.  And I'm seriously celebrating the last time I ever have to drive her to preschool.  I am so excited to just walk all three kids over to our school next year.  It's going to be wonderful.  Thank you West High, we had a great preschool experience.  Miss Donna, you have been adorable.

Shortly after Bundle's exciting commencement ceremony came one of the biggest nights of my PTA Volunteer coordinator year.  That would be our annual Art Showcase, in which the kids get to bring their families to view student art from the whole year along with special project and auction items and a community art gallery.  It's a very big night.  It was pretty bitter sweet for me because the head organizing honcho of the showcase (who had been running the show for seven years) was also the PTA president, and this was her swan song.  Man, that woman had me at hello.  I loved working with her and am still feeling very sad to see her go.  It's reminding me of my sophomore year of high school when all of my favorite favorite friends were seniors.  They all graduated and I felt so left behind.  Lots of great people are done at our elementary this year.  But then I look at all the great people who have joined the crew since I got involved and I feel better.  So many neat women.  Here are the kids showing off some of their art:

And here's me at my seat of honor - in the conference room herding the volunteers to their spots all over the school.  That is a very familiar spot to me at this point.  And with Bundle just starting her seven year journey there I guess it will just become more familiar still.

Oh yeah and one little awkward note....our school always does a drawing for these giant gift baskets at the art showcase.  Hundreds and hundreds of people enter.  The chances of winning are so slim I never considered asking my kids to not enter due to what folks might think if a PTA officer's kid won.  I felt a little weird when Stomper's name was called out and even got teased by one dad who made me feel pretty bad but then I asked myself if it's fair to my kids to not let them enter - they did all the things every other kids does to enter a ticket so why not?  We are loving this giant basket of art stuff.  Please don't tell me if I made the wrong choice because it's too late now. Also, I urge all of you with multiple children entering a drawing such as this to tell the kids that no matter who actually wins, the gift basket belongs to all the children.  It will save some tears and fighting if you prepare them before hand.

Here I am at a party to say goodbye to Sherri (that's not her - she's another sweet friend, Janet) - we all had to wear tiaras for the evening.  I felt foolish.  

Another spring time event at our house:  Troy grew a beard to celebrate his release from our ward's bishopric. His previous beard-growing record was four weeks.  He made it to about 4.5 weeks (and looked very handsome if you ask me) before the beard made him so nuts he couldn't take it another moment longer and shaved.  But it was a fun month of very stubbly kisses for us all.

The day before school got out Bitty finally got a chance to be in her class play - her teacher had been to India the previous summer so they did a retelling of an Indian folk tale, and she was ecstatic to wear some Indian bling.  She was so cute.  I love watching her on stage.

And finally the last day of school arrived.  Another very bittersweet day - not only is our PTA president moving on, but so is our beloved principal, Mrs. Miller.  I am so sad to see her go and have some butterflies about meeting our new principal, that's for sure!  Mrs. Miller could ask me to do pretty much anything for her and I would do it.  I have loved and admired her deeply.  Sniff.

The last morning of sending them out the door

Miss Carruth

Started the year as Miss Wiscomb and around Halloween went on a blind she's Mrs. Erickson!

And finally, later that evening, after I had thrown only one tiny little party for this birthday gal, came the Family Fun Fest carnival, where I could be seen slumped over at a shaded table, sipping diet coke, checking in volunteers and watching the roaming crowds.  Long day, nice cool evening, and never have I been so happy to go to bed.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


This was a very long time ago, but you may remember that the beginning of the 2013-2014 school year was a busy one - Wednesday, August 21st was not only the first day of school (which comes with several responsibilities for the PTA volunteer coordinator) but also happened to be my daughter Bitty's birthday.  And Birthday party.  And the day two little guinea pigs were invited to live at our house.  Big day.  Well, guess what - Tuesday, June 3rd was the last day of school (which also is the day of our school carnival which comes with several responsibilities for the PTA volunteer coordinator) but also my daughter Bundle's birthday.  And birthday party.  And....luckily no new pets were added this year.  But it was a party of 4 and 5 year olds.  BIG DAY.

I know what you're thinking - why didn't you just make her have her party a different day? I probably should have. I could even have tried to trick her into thinking her birthday was the next day, but you have to know that Bundle's brain would not have gone for that.  She wakes up pretty much every morning with an announcement on what day it is before she says anything else.  She just orients herself every morning by figuring out what day it is.  It's pretty funny.  And if you remember, she is very focused on her birthday.  All Christmas season long she preferred to talk about her birthday plans rather than the impending visit from the big man in the red suit.  She has planned and planned and planned.  So when I even mentioned holding a little party for her on a different day, her lip quivered and she quietly said, "But mom, my birthday is on Tuesday June 3rd and so I need to have my party on Tuesday June 3rd."  Okay, honey.  I can pull it off.

Luckily I was able to convince her to have a small gathering on our back porch instead of following through on any of her other ideas which ranged from the unreasonable (flying to Paris France with 8 of her best friends) to the horrific (Chuck E Cheese).  I was so happy when she asked if we could please have a few friends over for a (ready for this?) Fairy Princess Birthday Tea Party.  (That was the official title.)  We threw together a few invites, sent them off and headed to the dollar store for some cheap decorations.

After spending the morning trying to bring order to the house (possibly a stupid thing to spend time on since we would next be inviting total chaos in the form of birthday guests), Bundle and I created our party room on the pack porch.  We had a good time working together.

Then after heading over to the school to watch the last few minutes of the Last Day Assembly and snap pictures of the kids and their awesome teachers, we hurried back home to finish the party preparations.

The best part of the day was that Bitty offered to be my assistant for the party.  I was so grateful to her for helping - she was absolutely darling with the little girls.  And even better, her dear little friend offered to come help too.  So I had two amazing 8 year old assistants.  Heaven-sent, I tell you.

The party began with crafts in the corner - fairy wings and crowns.  Neither craft ended up working very well but who cares - the time it took for the kids to do their decorating ate up about half of the party time which is really what I'm looking for in any party activity.

Then we herded the gang to the table for tea.  Thankfully Bundle was thrilled with just lemonade.  For Bitty's party in August I tried to make an herbal tea concoction that the kids might like and it wasn't very popular.  These gals ignored the cream puffs and just drank a lot of lemonade.

For a little while we just cranked up some dance music and tried to have a dance party on the back lawn.  It turned pretty quickly into just chasing each other around.

Then came presents....

And cake....

And after a very spirited 90 minutes, the party came to an end.  Whew.

 Happy birthday, my big five year old gal!  Love you dearly.

Monday, June 02, 2014


Today is June the 2nd.  Looking at my blog page I see that I am in a rut:  4 entries per month.  That's the best I can do lately.  Well, dagnabbit, this month I am going to do better!  (Of course I am!  Summer is starting and I am going to have a TON of free time!  Well, that is, when I'm not running my daily carnival for the kids so they stay busy, creative and out of sibling squabbles....)  But yes, I'm shooting for more than four entries this month.  That should be pretty easy, actually since I'm so far behind that I already have at least four things about which to write.

Where to begin, where to begin?  I'm not going to go in chronological order because who cares anyway.  How about a recent really really fun weekend: Memorial Day/My Birthday.

I love my birthday.  I find May 25th to be an absolutely magical day in the most magical of all months.  Spring has finally settled its roots in deeply enough that fears of late-spring snow are over and flowers abound on every porch, in every border garden, in every hanging basket.  Everything smells nice.  It's not too hot yet.  The end of school is just around the corner, and dreams of late starry summer nights, sunburnt legs and sleeping in are setting in in ernest.  The whole month just tingles with anticipation.  I always feel very celebrated on my birthday - it's a great day for me to recognize the blessings and lessons of another year, the grand folks that fill my life, all that there is to be happy about.

My birthday fell on a Sunday this year, usually a bummer because one of my favorite birthday activities is to stop in and partake at several of my favorite restaurants throughout the day.  So since I wouldn't be doing that, I just thought about what I would really love the most, and it turns out that I just feel so filled by the dear friends in my life.  What I really wanted was to be with some of those people.  Happily, Peter and Sheri were able to come up for the weekend, and we did our best to fill the days with activity such as (doi) a trip to the zoo - they had to see the lions, right?  (Twice, actually.)  We also hit Seven Peaks Water Park on its opening weekend, happily much warmer than the opening weekend last year - oh what a difference 20 degrees makes!  Sheri took me for a pedicure, we had my parents over a couple of times, we had a fantastic bbq lunch at my sister Margaret's house - it was a great weekend.

And on my birthday itself? Well, church in the morning for one thing.  But since my brother announced to everyone that he was visiting for my birthday,  I was well-wished and happy-birthdayed all over the place.  After church I got to go for a walk all alone:

...and that was heaven.  Sheri made sure I didn't touch a dish all weekend.  And then, get this, I TOOK A NAP.  And in the evening?  A picnic dinner at our Matthew Park high above the city behind the capitol building where we met with a few families from our neighborhood.  We enjoyed the breezy view of our green valley surrounded by the still-snowy peaks.  Sheri got all the kids playing a round of Red Rover that turned into an hour-long rover marathon.  Hilarious.  We ate cake, we talked, we enjoyed one another's so-pleasant company.

See?  I just love my birthday.  Even when I go ahead and turn 41!!  I am officially in my 40's.  Not just in my 40, like last year.  It's plural now.

Another major activity of the weekend was enjoying this little squirt and her very juicy thighs

Cara was happy and sweet all weekend long except for this one moment, which we had to capture because it was so funny and cute