Monthly Archives: May 2012

Megan’s First Piano Recital

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Megan has been taking piano lessons for exactly two months now.  She LOVES it, and LOVES to practice.  On May 26th, she had her very first piano recital.  Grandma and Grandpa Johanson were in town so they were also able to attend.  Megan chose a very simple song, and she did GREAT.  She was by far the youngest and littlest performer there (not to mention the cutest!)

All ready to head out to the recital.

At the recital hall. She was so excited!

In the middle of her performance. How cute is she?

Her bow at the end. So cute.

Megan is sure growing up on us, but each new stage of her life is so fun and so wonderful.  Have I mentioned that I am just absolutely crazy about this girl?  Her next recital is in the Fall.  I am looking forward to seeing the progress she has made.  I am sure she will continue to excel!  Love this girl!

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Our Graduate

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Megan in the beginning of the school year.

All ready to head out on her LAST day of kindergarten.

The school year is officially over!!  What a year it has been!  On May 24th, Megan graduated from Kindergarten.

Showing off her “diploma.”

 Megan’s graduation day festivities included: the class performing all the songs they learned about “colors”, a slide show of various class activities, a performance of the class talent for the school-wide talent show (as well as a few individual talents), the handing out of diplomas, and lots of yummy food.

Singing the “colors” songs.

A picture of Megan during the slide-show.

The class talent. One student laid on the ground with just their legs showing, while another student sat on top and pretended that theirs were the legs of the child on the ground. It was very cute and very funny.

Megan took her role as the “legs” very seriously.

A video of the class talent:

Megan performing her talent. She sang “The Fifty States that Rhyme.”

Megan also performed her song for the school-wide talent show (she was the only Kindergartener who did a solo act!) Her is a clip of her performing for the parents at the graduation party:

My cute Megan waiting to receive her diploma.

Shaking her teacher’s hand and receiving her diploma.

Jane was there, too. But she did NOT graduate! She is still my baby!

 Megan’s kindergarten experience was filled with ups and downs.  Academically, she excelled: no problem.  She was the most advanced reader in her class, and was five reading levels ahead of the next child.  There were never any struggles when it came to learning.  She ate up all the new information and loved it.  Socially, she struggled.  Emotionally, she struggled.  Behaviorally, she struggled.  But she made leaps and bounds of improvement in ALL those areas.

When we met Megan’s teacher for the first time, I was sure she wasn’t going to be a good fit.  Honestly, I am not sure what I was expecting, and I was so apprehensive about Megan going to school that I don’t think I could have designed a teacher that I could have deemed good enough for her.  But Mrs. Lee was perfect for Megan in so many different ways. She was the perfect balance of patience, discipline, compassion, kindness, and intelligence.  She never got frustrated with Megan.  She was never mean to her or overly strict.  Not one other student in Megan’s class behaved the way Megan did and Mrs. Lee treated her just the way she needed to be treated.  And honestly, I don’t think Mrs. Lee had a clue beforehand what to do with Megan.  She was just ultra sensitive to her needs, and she was ALWAYS communicating with me.  I am sad that Mrs. Lee can’t move on to first grade with Megan.  I am terrified that she has raised the bar too high for any teachers to come.  I could not have asked for a better teacher to initiate Megan into the classroom setting.

Megan and Mrs. Lee

Adam and I are so proud of Megan and her kindergarten accomplishments.  It wasn’t easy for her.  She is different than EVERY other student in her class, but she hung in there and did her very best.  We are anxious and excited to see how she does in first grade this fall.  First grade??!?  NO!!!! 🙂

Daddy and his graduate

I love this girl so much!!!!

We had a gift waiting for Megan when we arrived home for the graduation festivities:

Graduated from Kindergarten…off to see the “world!”

We love you Megan!!  We couldn’t be more proud!!!

Field Day

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May 17th was “Field Day” at Megan’s school.  I have fond memories of field day as a child, so I was excited for Megan.  She had such a great time.

When I arrived, Megan was playing four square. Sometimes she waited patiently for the ball to come to her…

But most of the time, she waited for her turn while dancing around!

More dance moves.

Turns out, when the ball does come to her, she’s actually pretty awesome at four square.

Jane had an awesome time running around Megan’s playground. She LOVES her big sister.

There was a sidewalk chalk station. Jane wanted to do everything Megan was doing.

Megan only got to the do the slip-in-slide twice.  The first time, she ran the entire length without sliding. I thought for sure we were going to end up in the ER!

The second time she slid on her knees. She loved it!

Unfortunately, the kindergartners didn’t get to enjoy too much water play because there were so many other children and they only attend half-day.  So after field day, we met up with some friends at the splash pad in Spanish Fork, and they had a blast playing in the water some more.

Jnae had zero qualms about getting wet. She loves the water.

Megan had a great time at the splash pad. She is going to have so much fun this Summer!

A lot of the reason I blog these days is because Megan loves to go back and read when I post about what we have done.  I also love being able to share pictures of my adorable girls and what they are up to.  We have so much fun all day every day.  We are only one week in, but we are LOVING Summer already! In fact, it is well after 9 in the morning, and both girls are still asleep!  Better get some more blogs posted while I can!!!

Mother’s Day 2012

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I am so grateful to be a mother.  I love my little girls: so much.  But motherhood is not defined by the physical process of giving birth alone.  I am so grateful for all the women in my life who are such wonderful examples of motherhood to me and my children.  I had the opportunity to give a talk in sacrament meeting on Mother’s Day.  What a wonderful experience it was throughout the proceeding week to study and pray and research what it REALLY means to be a mother.  All women are mothers by divine design.  I am so grateful for the knowledge of my role as a daughter of God, and I love that I have two little girls that I can raise up to also be mothers; no matter what their future maternity or marriage status may be.

For Mother’s Day, Adam and the girls beautified our front porch for me.  So we had a shoe bench that we got from our sister-in-law Mary but hadn’t been using for shoes.  Adam turned the bench into a planter.  He also put some flowers into a pot and into Megan’s old rain-boots.  Add a hanging plant and the porch was complete.  I love walking out on the porch and feeling the thought and love that went into my gift.  I’m a lucky gal to have such thoughtful kiddos and husband.

Megan, who does NOT enjoy getting her picture taken: at ALL, wanted me to take this one of her with the planter.  She is such a sweetheart.

I hope that my own mother and my mother-in-law also had a wonderful Mother’s Day this year.  No amount of words or gifts could ever do my love and appreciation for them justice.  Happy Mother’s Day CJ and JJ!  I love you!

Family Night: I Love to See the Temple

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For Family Home Evening a couple of weeks back, we took the girls to the temple.  We first took them to the Provo Temple, and then we took them to the new Provo City Center Temple Site.  They both loved the temple and temple grounds.  We talked about what is done in the temple, and about the importance of a temple marriage.  Both girls had a wonderful time and it turned out to be a great family night activity.

On Saturday, May 12th, Adam, Jane, and I attended the Provo City Center Temple Groundbreaking.  Elder Jeffrey R. Holland presided, and gave wonderful remarks about the old tabernacle and the new temple.  It was a wonderful experience and I am grateful that Adam and I were able to go.  You can read a summary of the event: HERE.  I do not take it for granted that we will soon have not one, but two temples within a mile of where we live.  Hooray for temples!

NO TV WEEK!

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In April, Megan came home with a note from school that April 23-28th was no TV week.  Now, Megan doesn’t really watch a lot of television (especially not compared to her mom and dad) so I didn’t think she would take much interest in “No TV Week”.  But on the morning of the 23rd, I came downstairs to find that she had taped a sign to the TV that read “NO TV THIS WEEK.”  And she didn’t watch TV ONCE the whole week.  Or play Wii, or play XBOX.  She was pretty determined.

I tried to fill her week with some unique activities just to accentuate “NO TV” and I think she had some pretty memorable experiences.

She and her dad worked on this thing called “Snap Circuits” which Megan and I bought Adam for Christmas.   So you follow directions to put all different pieces together on a circuit board to create different things like lights, fans, alarms, etc.

The two of them had such a great time working on the different projects.  It was the PERFECT activity for them.  They spent hours working on it, and there are still plenty more projects to be done!

We also hiked up to “Y Mountain” for the first time as a family.  In fact, this was only my second time.  The first time I hiked to the Y was with Adam before his mission.  If was fun to go up there again together; this time with our girls.

Megan was our guide:

Oh to be young…she basically ran the entire way up the trail, which can get pretty steep at times…

“Mom!  I’m the ‘Y’!!!!”

Jane wanted to “SLIDE” the entire way down the mountain.

Mostly Jane just wanted to stop and play in the dirt.  Here’s Daddy giving her a little pep talk. “We’re almost there!” The girls taking a little rest (for mom and dad’s sake…)

“Mom!  There’s the temple!”

Megan at the top of the Y:

Jane at the top:

The girls and I at the end of the hike.  I was more worn out than the children!

We did lots of other activities during “No TV Week”, but hiking the “Y” was by far the most memorable for Megan.  To this day she still looks up at the Y on the mountain and talks about our trip up there.  It was a totally fun experience!

It’s Been a Month?!

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Wow, a whole month since I’ve updated.  One might get the idea that we are busy or something.  Welp, you’re right.

This little cutie turned 16 months old.

Look at her all sprawled out on our bed like she owns the place.  Oh wait, she does own the place.

Jane is something else.  She is hilarious.  She has so much personality.  She cracks me up.  She is talking a lot these days.

Jane LOVES Sesame Street.  Especially Elmo.  What child doesn’t love Elmo?  Oh, I know, those children who aren’t exposed to Elmo.  What a tragedy!!!  Jane’s obsession with Elmo is so fun. She can say “Elmo” and “Big Bird” and “Bert” and “Ernie” and she makes a grumbling noise which represents Cookie Monster.  I think the funniest one she does though is the character Count.  She does his little hesitated laugh: “Ah. Ah. Ah.” It is hilarious!  She also says “mom” but not all sweetlike, but more like an annoyed teenager: “MOOOOOOOOOOOM!”  She can say dad, more, all-done, uh-oh, dog, kitty, bye, hi, pop (as in popcorn), hello, drink, up, no, and “uh-huh”.  She says “ish” for shoes, and she wants her shoes on 24-7.  Probably because I don’t let her go outside without shoes, and she always wants to go outside.  She is too much.

Jane’s working on her next batch of teeth – I think she us up to 14 now, or at least almost 14.  She still does not like food.  So sad.  I really question whether or not my children are really my children because they don’t like food and I love food.  What is wrong with them?  Food is awesome.  She does like strawberries though.  And Jello.  But not strawberry Jello.  Just kidding. She does like strawberry Jello.  Tricked ya.

Megan is almost finished with Kindergarten.  Be still my heart.  Seriously.  I keep asking her to please not start First Grade in the Fall, but she tells me, “Jesus wants me to go to First Grade.”  And I just can’t argue with that.  So I don’t.  Mostly.  I’ve also asked her to turn five again next month instead of turning 6, but same thing: “Jesus wants me to grow up.”  Which is followed by, “don’t worry mom, I’ll still love you when I’m big.  Even if you’re in Heaven.”

Since we started evaluations for Megan in January, she has now received three separate diagnosis, which are all related to each other.  So she’s got Aspergers, and also what is called a Pragmatic Speech Impairment, as well as a Sensory Integration Disorder.  So we’ve got lists and lists of interventions we need to be practicing at home, and she regularly attends behavioral, occupational, and speech therapy.  Overwhelming is a gross understatement, but she’s doing great.

She’s still our little smartie pants.  She is currently determined to learn the names and locations of EVERY country in the world, and she’s very interested in the value of money and how monetary exchange works.  Mathematics continues to come oh-so-easily to her and recently she has taken to division.  She is enrolled in a Chinese Immersion Program for first grade, and she is totally stoked about that.  She is LOVING piano lessons.  She pulls out her music books on her own each day to practice.  We never have to remind her.  She also adds lyrics to all the practice songs that are just notes.  I am not sure how her teacher feels about that…but her music books are FILLED with her own notes and lyrics.  It’s wonderful to see her eating it up like this.

Adam has wrapped up another year of teaching at UVU, and will take a break from that for the Spring/Summer.  He received such good evaluations from his student this past semester.  He is a wonderful teacher.  I love that he gets to teach at UVU, but I also love that we get to have him home again on Saturdays! Yay!

We are so excited for school to be out and for Summer to arrive.  This upcoming Monday we are having a “calendering” FHE where we schedule out the days of Summer.  Can’t wait to fill the dates with trips to Seven Peaks and all sorts of Summer activities!  We are also so THRILLED for Adam’s sister Carrie who is getting married to James in the Timpanogos Temple on June 16th!  Adam and I REALLY like James.  We can’t wait!!!  

I am going to work on going through some pictures now so I can get some new posts up.  I hope there are at least a few of you who are looking forward to some updates!