Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Eve Merriment!


We had a wonderful Christmas Eve! We invited our pretend grandparents, otherwise known as Ms. Bea and Mr. Marvin, along with a little neighborhood friend to participate in the festivities. After a delicious lunch/dinner (linner?) at Outback Steakhouse, we made a quick stop at the dollar store so the kids could pick out presents for each other and then bee-lined it home to get ready for the big night. Todd helped the kids wrap each other's presents, while I started on the cinnamon buns. When the buns were safely baking in the oven afloat in all of their caramely goodness, we began my favorite night of the year by opening the first gifts of Christams and putting them on:

Then it was time to act out the Christmas Nativity. Faithful Todd read Luke 2 while our budding actors performed their parts of standing perfectly still. Being the only girl in the fam, I usually have to play Mary, so it was very refreshing to have our neighborhood friend fill in for me. Although Jude would not let me wrap him in swaddling clothes, he was very professional in his part as baby Jesus, beaming munificently up into Mary's face.

Next, we heartily sang our favorite Christmas carols and then off to the kitchen to enjoy ooey-gooey, oh so yummy cinnamon buns and hot chocolate in our new snowflake mugs.

Of course, we musn't forget Santa. He needs all the energy and comfort food he can get on his long, arduous journey across the globe:

The Stockings were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there!

To bed, my little childlings and may your dreams be filled with sugar plums and all good things this Merry Christmas Eve!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Bad Habit

I have this bad habit of wasting my time perusing the anthropologie website and salivating over almost every single item they have in their home section. I confess, I load up my "shopping cart" without a hint of discretion. Sometimes there are over 30 items in my cart at a time. BUT here is where you should be very, extremely proud of my perfect self-control: I never proceed to checkout. Never, ever, EVER. Really, that is admirable, yes?

On a side note--just in case you were planning on getting me a Christmas gift this year--I will give you a peek at the rug that is my heart's desire:

And, bonus, it only cost $1000. I repeat--it only costs ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS! Very affordable, darling :).

How to Behave and Why

My kids are having a fabulous Chrismas full of wonderful and delightful surprises. However, if I wasn't a little bit of afraid of my children, I would cancel all their presents and give each of them their own copy of this helpful instructional book:

Monday, November 23, 2009

Let me tell you about MY NIGHT.......

This evening, I had my nose out of joint. My little naughties were much naughtier than usual. The house looked (still looks) like a bomb exploded in it. Pretty much the only noises I heard all night were "Crash", "Whack", "Scream", and "I'm telling Mom!" I spent two hours making soup with one arm while holding the baby in the other. And then those rude little things refused to eat it and sat at the table saying "Ooh, this is so yucky, mom." Reuben managed to "accidently" tip his soup over so he didn't have to eat it while the others spread biscuit crumbs from floor to ceiling (exaggeration, not quite to the ceiling, but really, almost!) There was also actual punching at the dinner table. After dinner, I excused myself to go cuddle baby Jude to sleep. I instructed Jonah to go turn on the t.v. to the pbs channel for the kids, hoping against all odds to have 15 minutes of quiet so I could get Jude to drop off into dreamland. No such luck. Reuben had taken the batteries out of the controller and lost them so there was no way to turn on the t.v. For the next 30 minutes there was a steady stream of kids coming into my room to tattle tale: "Mom, Reuben filled the bathroom sink with biscuits and turned the water on." "Mom, Jonah accidently broke a picture and there is glass all over the living room." "Mom, someone peed on the floor and I slipped in it" (no confessors). And on and on it went. I finally got Jude to sleep (the smallest Crandall cannot fall asleep unless his head is laid snuggly on his mother's arm) and had dozed off myself, when I heard three happy, excited voices by my bedside. My sweet stinkers presented me with handwritten love notes, mangled biscuits left over from dinner and ice water (note to self: never, EVER, make biscuits again). And another surprise was waiting for me upstairs:

Well guess what, me wee boys, I love you, too! And you may count yourselves very lucky that I've changed my mind about our theme song for next month being "I'm gettin' nuttin' for Christmas, cause I ain't been nuttin' but Bad!"

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Baby Jude pictures--at last!

My sister's best friend is an incredible photographer. I'm in love with her work (check out So when she agreed to take Jude's newborn pictures, I was thrilled to the tips of my toes. Kristy worked her magic for the price of a steaming bowl of chicken tortilla soup and some chocolate mint cookies (I definitely got the better end of the deal, yes?). Without further adieu--presenting Jude Larson Crandall!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Wasn't I meant to be upper crust?

Today I was going through a box of old pictures in the storeroom when I ran across a very funny letter that I wrote years and years ago that someone (my mom) kindly had saved. As you you shall soon see, it is by no means based in reality, but rather a product of a child's very active imagination.

Here it is:

"Dearest Maxamillion,
Lamb Chop. Do please remind Edgar to take the mercedes in to fix that dreadful choking sound. Oh, and please instruct Rosalind to cancel the catering service for Saturday night. Their lobster dish is horrid and Cook can do just as well. Frederick has a violin quartet performance at the Governor's mansion at 2 o'clock this afternoon. There isn't a way in the world I could tear myself away from Mimi's charity luncheon, so I'm afraid you will have to go. Frederick depends on it. Take the helicopter if you must. Just one more thing, darling--call Marcel at the travel agency. Tell him it is imperative that we get Gateshead for the 20th. Really, our soiree will not survive without the tiered gardens. Dearest--thank you ever so much. I do hate to pile on such a list on your day off, but life must go on--musn't it?

With Tenderest of Regards,


Tell me, wasn't I meant to live the life of a filthy rich socialite? What happened?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Echo Lake Fun

It's been four whole years since the last time we stayed at the cabin. This isn't just any log cabin. My mom and dad along with all of the aunts and uncles and of course the grandparents helped build our cabin when I was two years old. The wood flooring in the cabin is from my dad's old elementary school. I spent all of my childhood summers here swimming, tubing, canoeing, swinging on the rope swing and sleeping in one the of the many antique brass beds lining the top floor. The miraculous thing is the cabin really hasn't changed in all these years--same furniture, same curtains, same rugs, same bed, same dishes... I didn't realize how much I missed the cabin until I walked through the door. It was so fun to share the joys of the cabin with my own children.

Here is a view of Echo Lake from the third floor balcony of the cabin.

The boys had a blast! They went swimming for hours every day, went for tube rides behind the boat, jumped off the platform, swung off the rope swing, caught turtles out in turtle bay in the canoe,and crawdads off the dock at night. Ezzie mastered the kayak and even took Reuben out for a few rides. For the Fourth, a few of my siblings drove out to the Indian Reservation and purchased illegal fireworks and we had quite the show from the dock! It really was a perfect vacation.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Family Pics

We are back from a wonderful, fun-filled trip to Montana. It was 10 days of awesome! When I download the pics off of my camera, I'll post all about the cabin.

While we were in Montana, we had the opportunity to take some family photos, the first we've taken in nine years because of all of the sibs going on missions. Sadly, we were still missing our brother Ben and my Todd but it was still the largest group of family we've had in a long, long time.

Here is the Larson Clan:

The Mamacita and the Papa:

The Brothers:

The Sissies:

The Granchilluns:

The concerted effort to get all the grandchildren to look at the camera at the same time:

Candid shots:

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Ezzie's birthday and Baseball

Well, I certainly am an inconsistent blogger, aren't I? I could blame it on lots of things if I wanted: the craziness of getting ready to move next week, this long, drawn-out pregnancy (I guess it isn't really drawn-out. My guess is that the baby will probably make his entrance after the standard nine months), working my bum off as relief society president, baseball usurping our lives for the last two and half months...but honestly, the real reason is just plain laziness. The two hour naps I've been prone to taking every afternoon for the last 2 months have also probably contributed to my lack of motivation. Speaking of stolen afternoon naps...I have a clever strategy I use when I answer the phone to hide the fact that I've been snoring away only seconds before; I sing a few scales (La,la,la,la,la,la,la) before I say "hello", thereby banishing the groggy, tongue-slurred speech that is dead give-away.

Back to the topic at hand: I will always be able to find a million excuses for not blogging, but I've decided instead to look for reasons to blog.

One great reason is my Ezzie June's 6th birthday. I love this child. I have felt an especially tender connection with him since the day of his birth. He is sweet, sensitive, artistic, and just plain beautiful. He has an old, wise soul in that little six year-old body of his.

We have a tradition in our family that the birthday child is king for the whole day. He wears a crown and gets to order all of his loyal subjects around. We respond by bowing and saying, "As you wish, Oh royal King." Ezra gave all of us titles in his royal kingdom. Of course I was the royal Queen. Todd was the royal knight, Jonah was the royal Jack...and Reuben was the Royal Slave!

For the next part of this post I am going to gripe and complain for a bit. I can never say the word "baseball" without saying "grrrrrr" under my breath at the same time. When I say that baseball (grrr) has usurped all of our time for the last two and half months, I am not exaggerating. We found ourselves marking time at the baseball fields at least four days each week (I guess that is what happens when you have two players and they both have two practices and two games every SINGLE week). Gone are the days when kids organized their own practices and gmaes in the empty lots behind their houses. We live in a time where soccer moms and baseball moms, day in and day out, have to load up their kids, drive some distance to scheduled practices, wait on the field for practice to wrap up, and then drive their kids home or on to another lesson. And what's up with playing a sport 4 days a week for heaven's sake! Why does the sport have to take over the lives of entire families. What happened to the well-rounded child and what happened, for that matter, to unstructured free time? HUH?

Now that I've got that off my chest, here are some cute pictures of my little sluggers:).

And of course, let's not forget their little fans: