Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone!
Here are a few pictures from our trick-or-treating adventures tonight...
Here's Jakey all ready to go get some treats!

The three scary pirates! Arrgh!

Not exactly intimidating, but definitely cute.

Here's our traditional pumpkin. This pumpkin was especially fitting this year considering how I can't seem to keep anything down lately! ew...

Just as we were getting started, Jakey fell on his lip while trying to get into the wagon. Luckily, it wasn't anything that a loving daddy and a little trick-or-treating couldn't fix.

This is the way to go! Next year, I'm going to hop in there too!

The kids had such a great time tonight, and it was so nice to get to know our new wonderful neighbors! But I have to say, we definitely miss you Lutz family!!

Here's Jakey showing me his lip. :( Aww... love this little guy.

Look at all that booty! (The candy that is... haha!)

The pirates playing rock-scissors-paper over their yummy loot!


Yay! It's the 31st! Now that I've achieved my goal of a blog post every day this month, I think it's time for a little respite... so you might not hear from us for a while.

Happy Halloween from the Hudson Haven!

Friday, October 30, 2009

(Not so) Sweet Tooth

Since many of us are especially concerned about our kids' teeth this time of year, I thought I'd pass along a highly informative website about dental health. Since I have the worst sweet tooth ever, I have learned about sugar and tooth decay the hard way in my lifetime, and this website teaches the facts very plainly.

Here is some information about sugar and dental health, followed by a link to the site...

"Believe it or not, even if you never brushed your teeth, you would never get a single cavity if there were no sugar in your diet. No sugar, No decay....period! Even if you NEVER brushed your teeth! (If you want proof of this, go to a museum of natural history sometime and look at the skeletons of ancient humans. You will find their teeth quite worn, and some may be missing from gum disease, but you will see NO cavities! These people did not have dentists, and they did not brush their teeth, but they had limited access to concentrated sugar which is the reason that they had no tooth decay.)
This does not mean that sugar is evil. If you eat sugars only with meals, it does relatively little harm. 95% of all cavities are caused by specific sugar habits.

If you seem to get a lot of cavities, then you almost certainly have a sugar habit. By that I mean that you tend to expose your teeth to something sweet numerous times throughout the day. The key here is the frequency of exposure, not the actual amount of sugar in the foods eaten or drunk.
-Say you buy one can of (sugared) soda (or even natural fruit juice) and then sip it throughout the day, taking a sip, putting it down, then picking it up for another sip twenty minutes later.
-Each sip allows the sugar to coat your teeth.
-The bacteria in your mouth metabolize the sugar turning it into acid.
-This acid remains active for about twenty minutes at which time you take another sip starting the whole sugar/acid cycle over again.
-One bottle, or can may last a whole day, but that bottle contains enough sugar to cause huge damage to your teeth.
-Note that even if you drank an entire case of Coke in the space of 20 minutes, that case of soda would constitute only one discrete exposure and would do minimal damage to your teeth."

So in other words, snacking on one single skittle every 20 minutes or so several times a day can do much more damage to our teeth than eating the entire bag of halloween candy in one sitting! As far as our dental health is concerned, it's the frequency with which our teeth are exposed to the sugar that matters. I highly recommend checking out this website for more info... but beware, the pictures on this site will make you want to stop what you're doing, and brush your kids' teeth (and your own) right now!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I Hope You Dance

Celeste and her best friend N got to dress up as princesses for a halloween party at school this week. They started dancing in the backyard after school, and I thought it was so sweet, I had to take a few pictures...

I Hope You Dance
By Lee Ann Womack:
I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed
I hope you still feel small
When you stand by the ocean
Whenever one door closes,
I hope one more opens
Promise me you'll give faith a fighting chance
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance
I hope you dance
I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Living might mean taking chances
But they're worth taking
Lovin' might be a mistake
But it's worth making
Don't let some hell bent heart
Leave you bitter
When you come close to selling out
Give the heavens above
More than just a passing glance
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


...that's what pirates say when they get to eat their treasures! This was us last night at the trunk-r-treat. Our camera stopped working, but my friend took this picture for us. This has been such a fun tradition for our family. The kids sure love this now, but I'm thinking pretty soon they'll probably want to do their own thing. I don't know how many more years we'll be able to continue this tradition, so we're enjoying it while we still can!

We were able to get a pretty good deal on these costumes. The hardest part about this was trying to find a modest lady pirate costume! I had to improvise a bit, and ended up using one of my own long skirts and pinning the white blouse to the vest so my shoulders weren't exposed. Why doesn't anyone sell classy and decent costumes for women anymore?! Anyway, I found the rest of the costumes at goodwill, so all together, it wasn't that expensive... and definitely worth it for the memories. I'll take more pictures on Saturday when we go out again for our second round of treasure hunting. Hopefully my camera will work next time. I have to get some shots of Jakey's bottom... his backside is padded and it cracks me up.

Hope you all have a happy halloween!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I don't really have too much to say tonight, but since I committed to writing a post every day this month, and I'm on a roll so far, I think I'll just write a little update on life...

So Jon has this exam coming up. In the actuarial field, to keep progressing and moving up in their career, they have to take these notoriously difficult exams. His next one is on Nov. 9th. He has been studying for months, but a week or two before his exam, he has to devote some serious study time to review all the material. This on top of work, family, and church responsibilities... he's under a lot of pressure, but he's really great at balancing it all.

I came across one of his hundreds of note sheets today and thought I'd scan it... Take a look at this crap...

(By the way, does anyone know how to add the zoom-in feature? It's hard to appreciate unless you see it up close.)
I mean seriously, it looks like a foreign language! Anyway, I just let him do his thing. And I'm grateful he does it so well!

I'm doing ok... definitely pregnant. I have never really experienced morning sickness with the other kids. But this time, it's a different story. Maybe I'm making up for what I missed. I have been really nausious and so exhausted for the last week. The thought of food is repulsive most of the time... but unfortunately that didn't stop me from raiding the good stuff from the kids trunk or treating bags tonight.. ha ha! I justify that they don't need all that candy anyway. Except I didn't touch the older kids bags... they know EXACTLY how many pieces of candy they have. (Darn ;)) Anyway, so I did a little research on morning sickness tonight, and found that if you're more sick than usual, it could be twins. Um... whoa. I think I would seriously go out of my mind.

Celeste is loving school. I met with her teacher for a parent teacher conference recently, and she told me she has gotten a green (which means she's had good behavior) every single day! And apparently, the teacher is pretty liberal about handing out yellows and reds, because she said Celeste was the only one in the class that has gotten a green every day so far. I was sooo pleased with her. I care more about how my kids are developing socially than academically. I want them to be thoughtful, caring, and kind people. And that means more to me than how quickly she can add or how neat her handwriting is. I love my sweet Celeste.

Benny makes me laugh every day. He seems to go from one mini-obsession to the next. Right now, he's obsessed with The Incredibles. He puts on his Mr. Incredible pajamas the minute he walks in the door every day. If he could, he would wear them to school too. He tells everyone that he has Mr. Incredible pjs, and his enthusiasm about it greatly amuses people. He is just the funniest, quirkiest kid, and I love him so much! He is also adjusting really well in school. I'm glad he's in this 4K program, because I think he will be well prepared for kindergarten. I LOVE his little raspy voice, and I wish it would stay that way forever. I still haven't tried to teach him how to pronounce his L's because I think it's so cute the way he says, "I yuv yew."

Charity is my sweet little cuddle bug. I'm enjoying the extra one on one time I get with her every day when the other kids are at school and Jakey takes his nap. She has a very easy going and laid back personality... most of the time. But she is also developing a bit of a 'tude. It's hard for us to get upset with her though because she's so darn cute when she gets mad! ha ha!! But she is such a sweetheart, lately out of the blue she'll say, "Mommy I yuv yew. And I don't want you to die... ever." It melts my heart. She has really gotten into puzzles recently... and she's great at them! She's seriously better than I am. When we go to the library, she and I work on puzzles, and she usually finds where the pieces go before I do. She has a ton of patience and determination, and she'll work on it until it's finished. I love this little girl so much.

And then there's my Jakey buddy. I can't believe he's not my little baby anymore. He is simply a hilarious little kid! He just swings from one emotion to the next, and it is too fun to watch. His face is soooo expressive! He will get upset, but usually he'll have this slight grin, and you know if you tickle him, he'll just start laughing. There is SO MUCH personality crammed in that little body... it's crazy. He loves reading time lately. When I'm in the middle of something else, he'll just bring a book to me, and plant himself in my lap. He's good at reminding me what my priorities are. I remember my grandma always said, she wished she could invent a "kid stopper". I always thought she was a little kooky when she said that... but now I understand.

I guess I had more to write than I thought I did. I am really just grateful for this life I have been given, for my family, for the gospel, and that I can be with these... my favorite people... forever because of Jesus Christ. Life is not perfect, but we are happy.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Super Benny!

It was Bennybud's 5th birthday today. He woke up to some presents on his bed and his favorite cereal for breakfast. (These were some favorite traditions from my childhood.) One of his gifts was a super hero costume and he LOVED it! He was running around the house like a superhero all day. I even let him wear it to preschool. Here are some highlights from his special day...

Benny was so excited that we got to meet his favorite superhero (Daddy) during his lunch break.

Jon invited a few friends from work to join us for the birthday lunch. They were such good sports to wear the party hats with us!! Ha ha!

Then we had a little family party tonight with a cake, and silly string. Every 5 year-old has to have silly string, right?? It was probably the coolest part of his day... but not mine. ;) I have a hard enough time keeping up with the messes around here as it is! But he loved it, so it was worth it.

Nana and Poppa sent a birthday package for his special day, and he was so thrilled. Thanks for your thoughtfulness Mom and Dad!

I sure love my Bennybud! He is a kind, tender hearted, and imaginative little boy, and I'm so grateful to be his mother.

Happy Birthday to one SUPER kid!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

For the young women

I LOVE working with the youth in the church. The young women I have met here are amazing, and I am grateful to have the opportunity to serve them and to try to help them grow closer to Jesus Christ. I love each one of them. I am astounded at their spiritual strength and their testimonies of the gospel. Many of them are just one of just a couple Mormons in their entire school. They show great courage to withstand temptations of their peers, and stand up for their beliefs.

These young women are wonderful examples to me of TRUE beauty. They understand that although it's important to try to look our best, inner beauty is what matters most. This video is really eye-opening, and I think it's good for all women to see... especially those who are most vulnerable to the pressures and influences of the media.

Looks will fade, but inner beauty will last forever.

Breaking News! This just in...


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Beautiful Mind

Celeste's favorite thing to do lately is build "airplanes" in the backyard with her friends. The girls have used up almost our entire tape supply, and our paper supply is also dwindling, but that's ok, because it's so good for their imaginations! They write out an itinerary for the airplane, and they draw pictures of all the passengers, and tape the pictures to the boxes. It's hilarious to watch them occupy themselves for hours with this simple activity. And it's interesting that although we have a ridiculous amount of expensive toys and movies in the playroom, their favorite thing is always to get outside and use their imaginations.

Did you hear that Grandmas? As much as we appreciate your generosity, the kids don't need any more toys. (But we could use some tape. ;))

Friday, October 23, 2009

Argh Matey!

I have absolutely ZERO energy tonight. I seriously feel like I've been hit by a truck. I guess taking that "boot camp" class this morning didn't help... what was I thinking?! Somehow I had forgotten about this less than joyous part of pregnancy, but I keep telling myself that he or she or (they?? eek!) will be well worth it. Anyway, so this will be a brief post. I just thought I'd upload some pictures of our little man Bennybud during his 4K halloween party today. Charity, Jakey and I got to join him for all the festivities and it was tons of fun...

Benny and his BEST friend batman... aka Dylan. Benny talks about Dylan all the time. In fact, the first thing he said after we told him we were having a baby was, "Can we name it Dylan?" I'm so glad he's found a good friend here.
Look at that face! This little stinkerpot gave me a run for my money today! He's definitely entering the independent stage. I think it's going to be a long 9 months with this guy around. ;)

Here are the kids going trick or treating around the building. Benny would always say, "Chucker chweet pees" (ha ha!) I didn't correct him cause I thought it was too cute.

Love my little pirate birthday boy (on Monday)!
And there's Charity in the back looking at herself in the mirror. ha ha!

Here is Benny's most intimidating pirate face. Argh!

Thursday, October 22, 2009


In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, there is a conference held twice a year in Salt Lake City, Utah and broadcast all over the world. A few weeks ago our family was blessed to watch the 179th Semiannual General Conference. It is a special opportunity to listen to uplifting music from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and inspiring messages from our church leaders. But the most wonderful thing about the conference is that we have the opportunity to receive guidance and loving direction from a prophet of God. We believe that there is a prophet on the earth today just as in ancient times... like Abraham and Moses. I have personally received a witness from the Holy Spirit that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. I always leave the conference feeling edified, hopeful, and committed to be a better person.

Here is a link to read or listen to the talks:,5239,23-1-1117,00.html

The following was my favorite talk. They were all wonderful, but this one was especially meaningful to me:,5232,23-1-1117-7,00.html

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

5 little pumpkins

We went to a pumpkin patch the other day and let each of the kids choose their very own pumpkin. We bought one extra little pumpkin and hid it from the kids. When we got home, we lined all 5 of the pumpkins up and said, "Oh wait a second, there's an extra pumpkin! Who do you think that one is for?" And then we broke the news that there's an extra Hudson on the way. They were sooo excited! Jakey had no clue what the fuss was all about, but he kept yelling, "Yay!" like the other kids, and clapped his hands. Little does he know, that means he's not gonna be the baby around here anymore... and he might not be too thrilled about that. ;)

Here are a few pictures of our fun day...At the petting zoo, this goat was super eager! Most of the goats would timidly eat the food out of the cup, but this one had the right idea! He just grabbed the cup out of our hands and dumped all the food out all over his face. Smart goat!Then another goat even more aggressive and climbed up on the fence! Um yeah... that's when mommy got worried, and we decided to move on.

Ha ha!! This picture cracks me up. We told the kids to make a scary face. I just love my little trick-or-treaters.

It won't be long until it's wayyy below zero here, so we're trying to get out as much as possible while we still can. Hope you're enjoying the fall season too!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Mormon Message

I love this video about the atonement of Jesus Christ. I know that He will heal, comfort, and transform us when we turn to Him in faith. He has healed my broken heart, and He has given me hope to keep trying when life seemed unbearable. I testify of His infinite and perfect love for each one of us.

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Mattew 11:28

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sweetest Day

Jon gave me a special gift on Saturday for Sweetest Day. He specified 10 things he loves about me and he clearly put a lot of thought into it. I felt that I should include it in this blog, so our kids will know how much their mommy and daddy loved each other.
I'm lame... I didn't get him anything. :( I also didn't expect anything. We normally ignore this particular holiday, since we already celebrate our love on our anniversary, and on Valentine's Day. But I think since we just found out we're expecting again, he felt compelled to do something special.

Is he the SWEETEST, or what?!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Yes, you guessed it... we're expecting again! This means that we'll have 5 kids, ages 6 and under for about a month, before Celeste turns 7. We're so excited to have another sweet blessing from Heavenly Father join our family! I honestly love being pregnant (except for that last month when I feel like an enormous manatee), but I am blessed to have easy pregnancies. Plus, Jon spoils me like crazy when I'm prego... so that's a bonus. ;) I'm also grateful that it happened after the move, now that we're settled, and things are feeling somewhat normal... well... as normal as life can be with 4 little ones. Things are going to be pretty wild around here, but I know that Heavenly Father will strenthen me and my husband and help us to carry out all our responsibilities. We'll do the best we can, and trust the Lord to make up for what we lack. Thanks for all your congrats and encouragement! You're wonderful friends, and I'm grateful to have such supportive people to share the happy news with. :)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Tale of Two Brains

Mr. Wonderful and I got a good laugh out of this video. Sometimes it's best to just laugh about the differences between men and women. Trying to change each other simply doesn't work! Enjoy!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Daddy's Girl

My very favorite time of the day is when we put the couches together after dinner and have "snuggle scriptures" as a family. It's just a little bit of time we have together at the end of the day to be close and to learn about the gospel. But I swear something tries to keep us from making it happen, because inevitably the phone will ring, or someone comes to the door, or we'll get in a little tiff right before this special, sacred time. I love this little tradition, but sometimes, when the kids are being... well... kids, I wonder if it's making any difference. But I know that it is. I really appreciated what Elder Bednar shared in conference last week...

"Sometimes Sister Bednar and I wondered if our efforts to do these spiritually essential things were worthwhile. Now and then verses of scripture were read amid outbursts such as “He’s touching me!” “Make him stop looking at me!” “Mom, he’s breathing my air!” Sincere prayers occasionally were interrupted with giggling and poking. And with active, rambunctious boys, family home evening lessons did not always produce high levels of edification. At times Sister Bednar and I were exasperated because the righteous habits we worked so hard to foster did not seem to yield immediately the spiritual results we wanted and expected. Today if you could ask our adult sons what they remember about family prayer, scripture study, and family home evening, I believe I know how they would answer. They likely would not identify a particular prayer or a specific instance of scripture study or an especially meaningful family home evening lesson as the defining moment in their spiritual development. What they would say they remember is that as a family we were consistent."

Consistency, (not perfection) is what we are striving for! And all of this matters because "No success in life can compensate for failure in the home." (David O. McKay) I remember when Elder Rasband of the Seventy came to visit our church in Ohio, and he said something about this statement that gave me great hope. He shared that quote and then added, "and the definition of failure... is when you stop trying."

So every night after we finish reading, we give a big group hug we call, "Hudson Hugs" (I know it's so cheesy ha ha!), and we all say, "I yuv yew famiyee!" (This is how Benny and Charity say it since they can't pronounce their "L"s- the funniest is when they ask for "yucky charms") But anyway, just this simple embrace seems to dispel any contentious feelings, or lingering negativity that might have built up among us during the day. It reminds us how much we love each other. And I think it's important to end the day on a good note.

So tonight, during snuggle scriptures, Charity climbed on Daddy's lap, and they both fell asleep. She had been a little lethargic for most of the day. I think she might be getting sick. :( It was too sweet, so I had to stop and capture the moment. She is such a Daddy's girl!

I am grateful to have a husband who is such a wonderful man and a kind and loving father. And I'm grateful for my little sweeties. They are each such a tremendous blessing in my life. I just yuv my famiyee. ;)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Simple Thought

Recently I have begun listening to K-LOVE (a Christian radio station) because it seems to be one of the only uplifting stations I can find these days. Tonight I was touched by a spiritual thought, and I wanted to share it. It was from Rick Warren's book, "The Purpose Driven Life". I have read this book, and although I am not in complete agreement with everything in it, I feel that it is truly an inspired book that has blessed millions of lives including mine. So the spiritual thought was that we have a tendency to make the excuse in our lives that God won't use us for His purposes because we aren't "good enough". We feel inadequate and become discouraged, and our capacity to do good is lessened. But Warren argues that, "All God's giants were weak people." He goes on to specify the weaknesses of some of the greatest prophets and spiritual leaders of all time:
-"Moses' weakness was his temper but God transformed him into "the humblest man on earth."
-Gideon's weakness was low self-esteem and deep insecurities but God transformed him into a "mighty man of valor."
-Abraham's weakness was fear but he became "the father of those who have faith."
-Impulsive, weak-willed Peter became "a rock."
-The adulterer David became "a man after my own heart."
-Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samual are other examples of men whose weaknesses were turned into strengths.

We can also liken this to the prophets in the Book of Mormon. Here are just a few examples I could think of:

-Enoch described himself as “but a lad, and all the people hate me; for I am slow of speech.” (Moses 6:31)
-Ether was unpopular- people “esteemed him as naught.” (Ether 13:13)
-Alma the younger and Enos both had a rebellious past.
-Moroni did not have the gift of good judgment in writing "for Lord thou hast made us mighty in word by faith, but thou hast not made us mighty in writing" (Ether 12:24)

But in spite of these weaknesses, look at the great work that Heavenly Father performed through each one of them! Their words and the examples of their lives continue to bless the world.

These examples of "weak" men, give me hope that the Lord can do a mighty work through all those who are willing to put their trust in Him. I believe that each of us have an entirely unique mission to perform on this earth, and that the Lord can use His weak instruments, to bless other people's lives. I believe that this is only possible through the atonement of Jesus Christ. We are made perfect in Christ through his grace, and through our faith, repentance, and obedience to His commandments.

Ether 12:27- And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

The "gospel" truly is the good news! It is a message of hope for all of us weak ones.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing

I thought I'd share my favorite recording of all time. My parents had a VHS that we used to watch on Thanksgiving called "A Thanksgiving of American Folk Hymns" by the BYU combined choruses. I just found it on youtube and I'm so excited! This arrangement is truly a masterpiece, and the performance is so heartfelt. It's just unbelievably beautiful and the ending makes me cry every time I see it. Enjoy!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Never a dull moment...

Could someone tell me what compels children to stick stuff up their noses? We had our first little mini-emergency here tonight. Charity came to me crying and she was pointing to her nose. I couldn't see anything up there, but she was in pain so I could tell it was serious. So after a few failed attempts to get the mystery object out, I called Daddy for help. And naturally, Daddy was able to dislodge it in one try... and it landed in her mouth. Ew. But she was so relieved! And so were we. I wonder what adventures lie ahead tomorrow...

Sunday, October 11, 2009


I LOVE Sundays. It's my favorite day of the week. I feel strongly that rituals and traditions keep families united and strong. So we have established a few rituals every Sunday that help to make it a special day for our family. First, and most importantly, we go to church as a family. Then, after church we have what we call "snack and snooze". We're usually starving because our meetings last 3 hours, so we have a big smorgasbord of leftovers from the week, and then we all crash and take naps.

In the afternoon, sometimes I'll get out a "Sunday jar" full of random ideas for service and other activities for the kids that are appropriate for Sundays. (I usually get that out if the kids say they're bored.) Then later in the evening, we make popcorn together, and watch a Sunday movie about Jesus, the Bible, or the Book of Mormon. It's a wonderful time to be close and to enjoy some time together. Lastly, we call Nana and Papa and each of the kids get to talk to their grandparents. We weren't very consistent in doing this for a while, but now that we have set aside a time every week, it has really helped to make it happen. Since we don't have any family here, it's a great way to nurture those important relationships.
Tonight was especially fun because Daddy set up the big pumpkin for us. Here are a few pictures from today...

The kids love making popcorn! They go crazy whenever it starts popping! I don't think we'll ever get microwave popcorn again, because this alternative is just too much fun!

It's showtime!Our ever amusing Daddy trying to make us laugh. I love to laugh, and he loves to make people laugh, so I think we're a good match. ;)

And naturally, there had to be at least one melt down! ha ha

Here's the silly glowing pumpkin we've put up every year since Celeste was born.

Poor Jakey wasn't too sure about this enormous foreign object taking over the front yard. He was pretty apprehensive about it and he kept clinging to my leg.

Who needs to rake when we have our very own little leaf collectors?!

Hope you enjoyed your day too! Do you have any Sunday rituals or traditions?


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