Meet my kids.

I have three kids. They’re great. I really like my kids. (Whew.)

Since I’m a mom and spend nearly every minute with at least one kid physically on me, if you come back to this site ever again (please, please, come back!) you’ll probably read things about them. Especially since the oldest kid was the inspiration for this project. So maybe I should say something about them here, so you know who I’m talking about.

We’ll call the oldest Pickle, since that’s what we call her around here. She’s eight right now, in third grade. She loves to read (hallelujah), and create amazing things with paper, and she’s quite sporty. She likes to run and skate and bike and jump and swim and pretty much anything outside. She plays team sports at recess with her friends even though I don’t think I’ve ever put her on a sports team. She would much rather do than watch. But more than either of those I think she would like to talk.  She’s a talker.  She adores her dad.
She loves to read and draw, but her favorite subject at school is math. She’s taking piano lessons (because I’m making her), and she can memorize anything if it’s put to music. Once she gets a song figured out, it’s in there forever. I taught her to spell her name by singing the letters and she could do it when she was two, almost before she could talk.
She wants you to know that she loves to make Valentines and she’s a very happy girl.

The middle kid is the only boy (so far), and we can call him Juice, since that’s what we call him most of the time. He’s five and finishing his third (and last) year of preschool. He really wants a brother to be on the “boys team,” and he wants him to be named Clarence (sorry, buster). When it’s time to clean out his room and get rid of “baby toys,” he wants to put them in a box and save them for Clarence.
He is our Puzzlemaster. He’s learning to write all his numbers and letters and he really wants to read. (I should probably teach him, but I’m probably going to leave that to Kindergarten.) He has his big sister’s fascination with numbers and he likes to figure out simple addition problems, and he’s so proud when Pickle can answer the really hard questions, like what’s 100+100, without even a thought. She’s amazing in his eyes.
I asked him what he wanted you to know, and he said, “I want them to know that Jesus is our Savior.” (I meant to ask if there was anything he wanted you to know about him, but I guess that is probably the most important thing you can know, so learn that lesson from my five-year-old.)

The last one (so far), my baby, we’ll call RoRo. (I would call her Baby, which is what we usually call her, but hopefully before too long there will be another Baby around here and she’ll have to graduate to a big-girl name.)  She’s three-and-a-half and in her first year of preschool.  She was my buddy for a long time, the only one at home with me those few hours a week that Juice was in preschool, but she was so sad when he got to go play with friends and create things and learn that I put her in a little school, too.  She loves ponies and tea parties and peanutbutterjelly.  She is almost potty-trained, and has been almost potty-trained for over a year.  She’ll get it, right?  Before she leaves for college she’ll have a streak of like five dry days?  Right?  (Should I put that on the Internet?  Remember, future employers, this is a pseudonym.  Note to baby daughter: don’t put your mom’s name on your resume.)  She is pretty sweet and she loves babies and she will set the table for you at every meal.  If she’s mad she pouts, and she can stick that lower lip out for days.
She wants you to know that she wants a pony birthday cake.  Because that’s what you want people to know when you’re three and your birthday is more than four months away.

So, that’s them.  All my kids are adopted, so you can look forward to posts about that in the future.  The oldest one is black, so I feel strongly about multiculturalism and diversity and learning about and loving each other.  Two of them are girls, so I feel strongly about women’s issues and respect between the genders.  We are all a bunch of Mormons, and I believe the Church is true, so there will be some posts about that, too.

My kids are all very different.  There’s definitely something to the nature-versus-nurture thing.  Some things they came with, and some we’ve tried to teach them.  All of it I hope they will harness and turn into something great.


Emma Higbee

Emma Higbee became a Pioneer when she was 11 years old.


Emma’s family were Mormons, and they lived in the frontier town of Nauvoo, Illinois, along with many others of their faith.  They had spent years, all of Emma’s life, being chased from one town to another across four states as they tried to live peaceful lives and create something good.

Finally, when Emma was nine, her family had to leave their home in Nauvoo and start for the American West, a place no one lived.  If no one was there, no one would bother them.  At least, that’s what her Papa told her.

Emma’s family — Papa and Mother, Emma’s step-brother John Sims and her baby sister Minnie — traveled for months and only got as far as the makeshift town they called Winter Quarters on the western edge of Iowa Territory (now Omaha, Nebraska) before they had to stop to rest and save money to buy supplies for the rest of their journey.  They stayed there for two years.  Emma’s Papa ran the ferry across the river to help other families coming behind them.

When Emma was 10, Brigham Young took the Vanguard Company, the first group of Mormons, and traveled to the Salt Lake Valley.  He came back telling of a peaceful, safe place where they could build and grow.  Emma was ready.  She was done living in a tent.  She wanted to go to Zion.

Well, she wasn’t quite done living in a tent.  In 1848, the summer before Emma turned 12, she and her family walked 1,031 miles from Winter Quarters to the Salt Lake Valley.  Along the way Emma saw babies born and a child die, she faced hunger and consuming thirst, and she came face to face with a herd of bison in her company’s camp.  Her faith was tested as she became lost along the wagon road and relied on the teachings of her father and her own experiences with prayer to find her way back to her family and eventually to the Salt Lake Valley.

On September 24, 1848, Emma Higbee arrived at Zion.  It wasn’t exactly what she’d expected.  It certainly was nothing like Nauvoo.  But there was peace there, and the opportunity to live her beliefs.

Emma Higbee was a Pioneer.


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