La Famiglia Itri

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Toe Day!

One of my favorite days of the year is when I get my toenails expertly painted courtesy of my work! I also get cookies and soda, and a bag full of goodies. For my toes, I can pick any design I want. Any pattern or picture I can find, I can request it. And now that Lila is a little older, she gets to come too! She came last year and was really scared. But this time she was champion! Sorry the first picture is a little blurry and glarey.

Lila Ballerina

If you ask Lila what she wants to be when she grows up, she says "I wanna be a ballerina!" with excitement. She is taking a Saturday morning ballet class right now from a wonderful sister in my ward who is offering the classes for free. In one of the classes, Miss Angela wanted to teach the importance for the kids not to go all the way up on their toes because it would hurt their feet. She showed them that they would have to have special shoes before they could do that, and in the meantime, they should use "half toe" to dance on. A few days later Lila found my pointe shoes and tied them around her feet.  It was adorable. But she got in trouble for it because she is too little to be on pointe and my shoes are expensive! But I do hope one day she gets to that point. I will nourish her little ballerina dream!

Unfortunately, she gets stage fright. Here is a little bit of her dance moves, but once I turned on the camera she wasn't as zealous as she had been before. She is still adorable though.

Sleepy Heads

Does anyone else think babies and kids do some of their best work in the cute department while asleep?

Lila and Elsa

Lila likes to eat Eggo waffles almost every morning for breakfast. But a few days a week she will settle for cereal. She almost exclusively uses her Elsa spoon that Shelly and Matt gave to her for her birthday. Sometimes she even has her Elsa jammies on too. She is the best.

Sunday Afternoon Picnic

Once when we were eating hot dogs for lunch, I turned it into a picnic for me and Lila. Now every time we eat hot dogs she thinks we automatically have to have a picnic. So we ate lunch outside today. Nick enjoyed some outdoor charm as well.

Sharing Time

I don't know why, but I really enjoyed my sharing time lessons this month and thought I would share a bit of what we did with you. It is probably quite boring for all of you adults to read it. So, please feel free to skip this post and focus on the ones about my family. But in case you don't have anything better to do, here it is!

Our scripture this month was the fourth Article of Faith. It goes like this:

"We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost."

In fact, the song of the month happened to have lyrics that match that verse exactly! (Don't worry, it wasn't a coincidence. We did that on purpose). So, can you guess what we learned about each week? Well, here is a brief overview.


First, I introduced the month with representations of each step on the path to Christ that is laid out in the Fourth Article of Faith. Then we took away steps 2-4 and focused on step #1.
We talked about how a seed is like Faith. The focus was on how to make our seed grow. The kids easily understood that a seed needs sunlight ant water to grow. Our seed of faith is planted in our hearts and needs food to grow as well. The food that faith needs in order to grow is obedience. We talked about how when we obey Christ's commandments, our faith in him gets stronger. If we don't feed our faith by making bad choices, our faith plant starts to die. 
You may not be able to see in this picture, but here are some really sad looking plants in the cup on the left. Which plant would you rather your faith looks like? We also talked a little about how our Faith needs to be in Jesus Christ, not something else. And, the best way to be obedient now is for them to be obedient to their parents.


Week two started with a brief review of week one. This time we only had the seed packet to remind us about faith. Then we talked about repentance. 
We had a bowl of water that represented us as perfect babies who had never made a mistake. Then, as we grow, we make mistakes. The sin makes us dirty. (pour pepper into the water). We demonstrated that we cannot get the pepper out by ourselves, even if we try. But there are steps we can take to be clean again!
In the back of the room, I had a few tape strips laid out a few feet apart. At one end we had a picture of Jesus Christ with a small bottle of soap. I explained that whenever we sin, Jesus Christ is waiting for us to repent, we just need to take the steps to get to Him. He is always offering to cleanse us, but we need to do the proper work to get to Him. So we had one kid stand on the other side of the room and made up some example of what they might have done that needs to be repented of. Then we took them through each step. First, the realized they did something wrong. Step up to the first tape line. Then, they had to apologize. Step to the second line. Next they had to try and make things right. Move up one more line. Finally, they had to never make that mistake again! (or at least genuinely try not to). Then, they had access to Christ's atonement "soap."
Even though it isn't a perfect depiction, you get the idea. The soap causes all the pepper to scatter and fall to the bottom. When we did it in primary, I didn't accidentally put so much pepper in the bowl. The effect was a little better. My strategy was to let the kids see it, then put the bowl away really quickly before they noticed the pepper wasn't actually gone.


Of course, we started again with a brief overview of Faith- it is like a seed and grows with obedience. We kept the soap to represent repentance. When we repent, Jesus Christ can make us clean again. This day, we talked about baptism. Because the Article of Faith actually talks about immersion, I had a little doll and "baptismal font" to show that we go all the way in the water. But that wasn't the main focus of baptism for the day, so we moved on quickly.
We focused on making promises. In senior primary we even talked about the word covenant.  (Trust me, the junior primary in our ward wouldn't have gotten anything out of that discussion...) First I had two kids come up to the front and made up some sort of promise they might make to each other such as "Stephanie promises to come to McKenzie's birthday party, and McKenzie promise to let Stephanie have a cupcake at the party." Then the two linked arms. We focused on this link as the main reminder that a promise was made. 

We had a picture of a child on the board, and a picture of the savior. I had some papers in the box that had some of the things that get promised when we are baptized. The kids got to take out a paper and try to guess which promises were made by us, and which ones were made by Christ. 
We promise: To take upon us the name of Christ, to keep His commandments, and Always remember Him.
He promises: we can have His Spirit to be with us, and that we can return to live with Him.

Once we had them all on the board, I circled the things we promise, then circled the things Christ promises so the circles became linked. Then we did a quick overview with our toys. I held up the girl and two strips of paper. This is what we are like before we are baptized. We might do things, and Christ might do things, but they are separate. 
 Then, the girl goes all the way into the water, and comes out linked to Christ through the promises that were made.

The Gift of the Holy Ghost

Sorry, not as many fun pictures for this last one. We spent the first few minutes reviewing again. By now, the kids were excited to come open the previous boxes and show off their knowledge of what was inside. I was impressed that the kids remembered that the liked paper represented a promise. Both junior and senior primary had at least one kid that could tell me what it represented before I said anything. Then we said the whole fourth article of faith together. In talking about "the laying on of hands for the Gift of the Holy Ghost," we focused on the laying on of hands part. I had invited a member of our ward who holds the Melchizidek Priesthood to come spend some time with us. I pointed out that the Article of Faith doesn't just say "the Holy Ghost", or even "The Gift of the Holy Ghost." The part about laying on of hands is very important.
I had written out some questions and placed them in the box. We all recited the Fourth Article of Faith together, then a kid would pick out and ask a question that my visitor would answer for them. Then we would recite again. (Repetition, repetition, repetition!) In senior primary we sat in a circle and they passed around the box. Whoever was holding it when we finished reciting would get to ask the next question. 

Our questions: What priesthood do you hold? How did you receive the priesthood? How do you confirm someone a member of the Church? What does “laying on of hands” mean? What does it mean to “receive the Holy Ghost”? How can the Holy Ghost help me?

Then, our tower was complete. The gift of the Holy Ghost was represented by the ribbon on the box making it look like a present.

In case you were wondering, I try my best to follow the outline provided by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints specifically for these lessons. I also got a few ideas from the internet. Pretty much the only thing that was my own was to have the boxes and items that represented each thing with a review each week. Also, I don't know what I will do when I don't live near my mom anymore, since I used a ton of her stuff. Her boxes, her wrapping paper, and her pink bathtub. :) I love you mom!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

9 Months

I can't believe my baby is 3/4 of the way through his first year. When I was pregnant, I was very very worried about going back to the baby stage. Lately I have been thinking about how happy I am to have a baby in my life. He is so wonderful. He makes me feel so lucky.

Here are some things about him:

loves exploring the floor. still scootches around on his belly instead of crawling up on his knees. favorite toy to find is paper or napkins or anything he can shred. likes holding cylindrical objects like pens, markers, chapstick, glue sticks, etc. total mommas boy. finally eating great, baby cereal and baby food included. goes to bed at 8:00 without problem or any work on my part. likes his big sister as long as she isn't smothering him. loves water. gets excited when he sees us getting a bath ready. could splash in the pool or tub for hours. still takes a binky. squeezing in to 6-9 month clothes. I think I have put off upgrading him long enough he might need to jump to 12 month clothes. size 3 diapers. gets separation anxiety. has two teeth. is loud. likes to yell for no reason. starting to refuse to be covered when momma feeds him. lets strangers hold him. still likes to be swaddled.

I forgot to take any pictures today so this is what you get. I snuck in and got one just two hours before the end of his 9 month birthday. isn't he sweet?

Here are some others from this past month.

He was playing around and just decided to take a nap.

His first tooth! I know you can barely see it.

Play time with big sister

Getting away from Daddy at church

I love those ears.

Now enjoy this little tidbit of the way Nick laughs sometimes.