Tuesday, January 18, 2011


There's nothing like the month after Christmas to keep life interesting!
We finally got our van fixed, now it's running just fine, but it was costly. We're hoping to put it up for sale soon and buy another car.
But that's not so easy, particularly when Moe needs two teeth crowned. We've just put it off for so long and now it has to get done. It will be a relief for him, though, and that's important.
All the kids are playing basketball at some level. Michael is on the freshmen team. Last Friday he got knocked over and banged his head on the floor. He was diagnosed with a mild concussion and will probably sit out the rest of the week to recover. He's doing really well though and we feel sure for a complete recovery.
Noah just tried out today for the seventh grade team. There are a lot of kids who want to play, but I'm pretty sure he'll make it onto one of the teams. And you know what that means ... of course he needs new shoes!
Ruby and Mia are part of the Woodburn parks and rec youth basketball program. Mia plays on a kinder-1st grade team, mixed with boys and girls. She was pretty lost during her first game last Saturday, but was a real trooper and ran up and down the court, hoping to get the ball. Ruby is on a girls 4th-5th-6th grade team. She didn't really want to play, and missed two practices the first week because she was sick, but still went out there and tried anyway. So proud of her! I think she'd rather be a cheerleader than a sports athlete, so we'll see where she goes down the road.
I bought a membership to the Woodburn Aquatic Center and I've spent several days in the past week getting acquainted with the treadmill. I've yet to enter the pool, though ... maybe sometime this week.
We're trying to get back to regular scripture reading, family prayer and family home evening. It's more hit-and-miss than I'd like, but we're trying. We had a fun FHE last night!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

2010 Christmas letter

Dear family and friends,
In the age of Facebook, it hardly seems necessary to send out a Christmas letter, but I’m a writer, so I can’t help myself.
Like every year, this one has been full of ups and downs, successes and failures, growth and opportunity, the laundry always one load behind. While the kids look forward to being a year older, the parents lament it. And if only I could get everyone to put away their shoes!
Obviously, one of the biggest things we did in 2010 was to take a family vacation to Disneyland. Truly, it was just perfect in every way. We couldn’t have asked for things to go smoother. And we created some wonderful memories that the kids are still talking about. We all just relaxed and enjoyed the experience, along with the 1.678 million other people trying to do the same thing! No, actually we went over Halloween and the crowds weren’t too bad. I think our favorite rides were in California Adventure … Soarin’ Over California, Grizzly River Run (where Mom and Ruby got soaked!), Toy Story. But we loved Thunder Mountain Railroad and Autopia too.
You can read my column about it here:
A vacation nearly perfect in every way

We also acquired a new member of our family: Odie. He’s a pug, almost 4 years old, and he’s just adorable. He loves to snuggle, stand right under your feet while you’re trying to do something, shed hair and chew on his nylabone. He’s just a wonderful, agreeable dog and it’s been fun having a doggy around the house.

Hmmmm, what else? Michael “graduated” from middle school and started high school and early-morning seminary this year. He’s attending Woodburn Arts and Communications Academy, and his favorite class is “intro to theater” (the rest of his classes are pretty standard). He seems to fit in really well at this school. He’s also on the freshman basketball team right now. He’s working hard and hopes they can win a few games this season. He’s well-liked and respected and is an overall great kid!

Noah is in seventh grade this year and is doing phenomenally better in every way. Sixth grade seemed to be a challenging transitional year for him. He played indoor soccer earlier this year, which was pretty fun. But he hurt his knee and that kind of squelched his drive. Yet, he came back this fall and joined the seventh grade football team, and now he’s doing wrestling. This kid has such an amazing drive to conquer the world.
Ruby also is doing much better in school this year. She just turned 10 and is a beautiful young lady. She loves listening to music, like Taylor Swift, and playing solitaire on the computer. She played soccer this fall and had fun being part of the team. She’s the fastest typist in the whole school! And she loves to write. Ruby is definitely her own person who’s just sure she knows as much as her mother and doesn’t need to learn a thing!

Mia wrapped up a year of preschool and now she’s in kindergarten. It is just amazing to see the transformation take place when they start school. She’s becoming more self-confident, her words are more mature and she’s pretty self-motivated. Even though she’s the baby of the family, she also has to keep up with everyone older than herself, so she just assumes she can do anything they can do. Mia has a kind personality who loves to help people. She loves helping in the kitchen, coloring and learning her letters. We put her in the Spanish dual immersion and she’s doing excelente!
Moe has been at Costco for over three years now. He has switched to a mostly daytime schedule and changed responsibilities, from cleaning the bakery to “wrapper.” He also helps sometimes with baking. As you can imagine, they love him there. He’s a hard worker, friendly to everyone and really pays attention to detail. After all the challenges of having our own business, it’s been such a blessing to have the stability of this job. Costco is definitely a growing company, so thank you to all those who shop there!
I’ve now been editor of the Wilsonville Spokesman for three years. I’ve gone from utterly hating it to becoming more comfortable with it. I’m still the primary chorister and having a good time with that. I’m enjoying motherhood and being a part of my children’s lives as they grow and develop. It’s a lot of fun, even in the challenges.
We hope you are all doing well. Please keep in touch!
From the Te family: Moe, Michelle, Michael, Noah, Ruby and Mia

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mia's swim lessons

Mia is a crazy woman in the water! She had swim lessons in July and just did so great! She would try anything her instructor told her to do, and more. She showed absolutely no fear, which is a big change from a couple of years ago.
All of our kids have been pretty fearless in the water, but I think Mia may beat them all. She practiced jumping in, diving, kicking and she's a pro at floating.
On the last day, the kids got to go down the slide and swing on the rope. What fun for all of them. Mia, way to go!

Growing up

The time has finally come ... Michael shaved his mustache! I think it looks pretty darn good. He's surprised at how quickly it grows back.
The boys are at scout camp this week. The girls went to see their cousins for a couple of days. Mom and Dad had a date night! What fun! We went to a movie, got something eat and wandered around Bridgeport, without worrying about "getting home on time."

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Summer fun!

Thanks to Mia's 5th birthday, we got a really fun slip and slide. Three of the kids tried it out with great results. Noah, of course, was the most adventurous. Mia and, suprisingly, Ruby were much more hesitant about diving down.

The weather has been so strange this summer. 65 degrees one day and 95 the next. It was actually cold two nights ago, with a stiff breeze blowing through.
But, true to form, the slip and slide no longer works. "Somebody" stepped on it too hard and popped the pillow at one end. Do you think Wal-Mart will take it back?

Things that make me happy

Although I enviously view other people's flowers and gardens, I don't have much time for it myself. But every year when my hydrangea blooms, I feel extra special. It looks so beautiful next to the house, which is hard to believe when you see it in February.
A local garden designer taught me how to prune it. Now, after three years, it's finally paying off!