Friday, May 30, 2008

Just You Watch

I'm bypassing Friday Fun in favor of Just You Watch.

Tornado Watch.

I don't like this. At.All.

And Sugar Daddy will be on the YM's camp out tonight. Which leaves me all alone, under a Tornado watch.

Did I mention I don't like this? At.All.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Remember these? Here's what they've become. A pretty good use of them, I think.

They are currently hanging in my laundry/mud room, and hold all the things that used to hang on my fridge. School notes and menu, VT route, the latest book report criteria, etc.

And look at this beauty I picked up yesterday. It is now hanging in the toy room. I absolutely love the colors, and of course the circles. For some reason I'm drawn to things with circles. I'll post about that another day. But take a guess at how much this baby cost me. Go on, guess.

*and after posting this, I realized the new bulletin board picture is upside down. Just use your imagination, cause I'm not going back in to fix it.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Grapes and Disney

My kids are kind of addicted to a couple of things.




They will eat a pound or two in a day. It makes for an interesting time finding a bathroom in random places, if you know what I mean.

And they are also addicted to the Disney Channel. I think I have seen every episode of Zack and Cody, Wizards of Waverly Place, Phineus and Ferb, and of course Hannah Montana. And the summer hasn't even begun yet.

Good times.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Many Pictures, Few Words

Memorial Day weekend was great. Busy, nice weather, and fun. Can't beat that. Here are the pictures from the ever exciting weekend happenings.

Gretta. Gotta love that face.

She likey her Diet Pepsi.

It was this contraption or a pool.

Maggie in front of the fountain at the Chicago Temple.

And she's off. Gretta loves to go fast in the stroller.

And the Ward BBQ. Hot dogs, warm mayonnaise based food dishes, and merry go-round, bad bad combination. Several kids ended up a little green. Not mine, though.

Emma is still recovering from her Strep. Gretta has learned how to go down the stairs, and Maggie thinks she can stay up late and sleep till 9 or 10. All good things, I think.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday Fun

Okay, here we go again.

What are you doing for the long weekend?

I'll start.

Friday night, hopefully a movie and dinner. Depends on the babysitter.
Saturday, primary activity at the temple, and then maybe the zoo after that.
Sunday, church?
Monday, BBQ and games at the park with the Ward.

*I'll also be missing the annual Memorial Day BBQ at Julie's house. And of course, the whole cemetery action. Be sure and tell everyone "Hi" from me.

Now you.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Yesterday was Maggie's last day of preschool. She was in a class with only 4 girls, all of them darlings, and the sweetest, most organized teacher EVER. They had an "under the sea" theme for the year, and every activity and story went along with this theme. They learned about recycling trash they find on the beach, and what animals live in the ocean, and colored all sorts of sea creature pictures.
Here is Maggie with Kaitlyn, Jenna, and Taryn. Taryn's family lives just across from our neighborhood, so she and Maggie play quite frequently. It's nice to have a good friend so close.

And here are the girls with their teacher, Kim. She's so nice, and seriously the most organized person I have ever met. And she has very shiny floors. All good qualities in a teacher, don't you think?

And here's Gretta mowing the lawn. She loves outside. Loves it. She will try and go outside the second she wakes up. She walks to the front door and tries to pry it open with her little baby fingers. And then of course, she cries when it won't budge. But this lawnmower kept her entertained for an hour. Although, she can push it, she can't turn it around. So she just walked and walked until she ran into either the street or the hedges. Then someone would turn her around, and off she'd go. What a kid. If only I could get that lawnmower to really mow the grass, I'd be set.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Happy Mail

I love mail! It makes my whole day, if not my entire week. Really, it does. Here is the latest in the Happy Mail category. Note who it's from. Yes, that indeed says "the best sister ever!" in the return address portion. Niiiice.

And here's what was inside. Yay for Death Cab. And double yay for Smashbox. I love the Smashbox primer. It's the best I've ever tried, and trust me, I've tried my fair share. Meg knows me so well, it's scary.

And in case you were wondering, I'm totally loving the new Death Cab album. I loved "Plans" so much, that I was leery of this new one. But it certainly didn't disappoint.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Guilties

Guilt. I hate that word. More than hating the word, I hate the feeling of the Guilties. You know what I'm talking about. Everyone gets it, and I don't know anyone that likes it. But I've made a resolution. I am no longer going to feel guilty for being the way I am. And I think the best way for me to exercise my renewal of freedom from the Guilties, is to write it out. Plain and simple. Things I will no longer feel guilty about.

  • Not being thin enough.
  • Not being pretty enough.
  • Not having a perfectly clean house.
  • Not buying my kids everything they want.
  • Not going to church every week.
  • Having friends that are not Mormons.
  • Preferring to spend time with my family than with the Ward.
  • Using an occasional colorful word to enhance my point.
  • Letting my kids eat candy, and preservatives, and watch TV.
  • Being myself, and all that it encompasses.
I've been having an inner turmoil since we moved here. I have been finding out who I really am inside. And you know what? I kinda like me. I'm pretty cool. I would be friends with me if I wasn't me. I am fully aware that I may not be a spiritual person, or one who sees beauty in every day life, or even one who looks for those things, but I have my ways of staying happy and seeing what fulfills me. I also understand that what and who I am today is not who I will always be, but merely a beginning to what I can become. But I have to do the things that feel right to me. And it's not always the easiest thing. But it's who I am. I am me. And gosh darn it, I like me!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Garage Sale

I have entered a new world. A world of junk, dollar bills, and plastic tables and chairs. A world where .25 cents makes all the difference between life and death. A world where, as Sugar Daddy showed us, speaking Spanish can make you many, many friends in a hurry. I can't take much credit for the garage sale. I only had a few maternity clothes and a handful of toys to sell. I think my grand total was $4.50 or something, but it was still fun. This is my neighbor Kate. She is the garage sale guru. She gets the best deals on everything. Plus she totally gets free stuff from, then sells it. What an imagination! If I tried that, I would end up with a car full of junk that no one else wanted. Anyway, she is the greatest neighbor, and my kids love her. She told them they could help her on Saturday with the sale, so at 5:30AM Saturday morning, Maggie gets up, dressed and heads to Kate's to start selling. Yes, 5:30 AM! Luckily, Kate sent her back home, and she didn't go back until 8:00, but since I was sleeping I have no idea what she was doing for those 2 1/2 hours. I'm such a good mom.

So that was my garage sale experience. I don't think I would ever do one on my own. I'm just not that motivated. But it is pretty fun to just chill and chat with the neighbors.

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Mowstress

I am in charge of the lawn duties. How very eco of me, huh? Yes, tis true, I mow the lawn every week. I also have taken up the weed whacker duties, which is a completely new experience for me. But if I do say so myself, the lawn looks pretty damn good.

But I have a problem.

You see, it should only take me about an hour to mow the front and back yards, and yet somehow it takes me 3. What could I possibly be doing wrong? I think I know.

It may have something to do with the fact that I have to stop and chit chat with the neighbors for an hour in between bag emptying breaks. This translates into long, long afternoons spent "mowing" the lawn. So I've decided to call those pesky gossiping neighbors that I love so much my "mowstresses". I think that's a pretty creative word, don't you? Feel free to use it in a sentence.

"On my last pass, along the grass, the mowstress stopped me to talk to her ass".

I think I just swore 2 times in this post. That's gotta be a record. And for all you G-Rated folks out there, sorry.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Everything's bigger in the Midwest

Okay, this has been a weird transition period for me. In Utah, we have exactly 2 seasons. Freezing, and construction. Here in Chicagoland, there is an actual Spring. Like with rain, and thunder and lightning, and everything. I certainly don't miss hearing about "the drought" like it is some sort of disease. So along with rain comes several things I'm not familiar with. First is the birds.

They come out in droves. Or would it be flocks? But they descend upon the yards as if they are a moving carpet of worm devourers. It's strangely beautiful.

Which brings me to the worms. Look at these things! I have my foot there for size reference, not because I was going to squish it. Not only are they ginormous, they come out and basically cover the driveway. When the rains subside, the asphalt is plastered with little shriveled worm corpses. When we subsequently draw on the asphalt with chalk, as kids tend to do, their little corpses are peeled up like scabs. It's disgusting.

And here's Maggie looking very concerned about the whole worm/bird/nature situation. She is not a nature lover. Everyday she asks me if there will be bees out. I always say no. I always lie. Sorry.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Patient arrived home at approximately 10:30 AM EDT on Tuesday. He basically walked up the porch steps, up the back staircase, and fell into bed, and has moved nary a muscle for hours now. He ate a blue popsicle at the hospital this morning, and has a residual blue tint on his teeth, which is actually a nice change from the blood stains that were there yesterday. Although it does cause me to envision a Smurf colony has taken up inside the hole where the uvula used to be.

Patient has not needed pain meds, as of yet, which is disturbing considering I waited an hour for them at Wal-Mart. Doesn't he understand? Just take one, honey, it will make us both feel better. But this is actually a good sign that his pain is under control. I expect patient to remain sleepy, or sleeping, for the rest of the day and probably all day tomorrow. I just hope he'll find a time in there to take a shower. Hope hope hope.

Monday, May 12, 2008

We have removal

It's official. The removula was completed today at 10:30 AM EDT. The patient is stable, groggy, but otherwise progressing nicely. It is planned for patient to be discharged Tuesday morning, as early as possible, as his wife hates seeing him in a hospital gown and bed. She is a very demanding woman. Ice pack for his overheating, no tea or coffee on his food tray, please, and keep the popsicles coming. She also doesn't believe the Nurse effectively took his temperature or blood pressure, and is concerned by his lower than normal oxygen saturation. However, all of these issues will be resolved through the night, with careful observation.

And that is all, folks.

Thank you for the many well-wishing emails and phone calls. And a special thanks to my little helper for taking my kid and not complaining about a 6AM intruder. You rock.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Mother's Day Week

To my mom

There are so many things that make you who you are. I couldn't possibly sum it all up in just a few paragraphs, or pages, for that matter. So I enlisted some help. Together we have racked our brains, smiled, laughed, cried, and felt pangs of homesickness, all to pay tribute to you, and your wonderful self.

Remember all those times you had to sit with me in school? Sorry.
I laugh when I think of all the times we had church activities, and you were always in charge. Always.
Making sandwiches on the cooler in the boat, and you only forgot the knife once.
The smell of Gardenia lotion in your bedroom.
The way you have the B. in your name.
Putting your family first, even when it's hard.
Discovering that you might have a bit of a rebel in you. Just a bit.
Au Gratin potatoes and chicken noodle soup. And Nasi. And turkey dinner, and rolls, and roll-ups, and I think we eat too much...
The way you send out cards "just because" to random people.
The way you keep friends for a hundred years.
Trying to find your way out of the ZCMI parking garage.
Keeping your cool when your sweet Cadillac lost the brakes on the way home from the mall.
Flying away at a moments notice when one of us needs you.
Using the "facilities" in a nice new house, when there was no running water.
Always saying "this too shall pass" and other fine words of wisdom.
Staying calm when the motorhome battery exploded, and just blowing out the flame.
Saying "Time to find a beach".
The yellow Blazer.
Your beautiful fingernails.
The way you love every piece of jewelry you've ever owned.
Shoes. Shoes. Shoes. Shoes. Shall I go on?
And last but certainly not least, QVC.

Mom, we love you. You are the rock we cling to, the light in our tunnel, and most of all, our friend forever. We couldn't do any of this "life" stuff without you.

Happy Mother's Day

*Thanks to all the sibs who helped out with this. Hopefully we aren't written out the will. Yet.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Mother's Day Week

Things I've learned about being a mother from other mothers.

Being a mother means more than just bearing children.
Being a mother means not always being friends with your kids.
But knowing when you need to be.
Being a mother means watching your kids try, and fail.
Being a mother means waiting for your kids to make the right decisions.
Being a mother means just listening while your kids cry.
Being a mother means not taking anyone's side.
Being a mother means working through the pain.
Being a mother means trying to do it all, but not feeling guilty when you don't.
Being a mother means understanding that your kids could never possibly love you as much as you love them.

Stay tuned for a special post tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Mother's Day Week

More of why I love being a mother.

Look at that face. How could I not just want to eat that face? She is so funny. I love being a mother because my kids make me laugh, at least several times a day.

As you can see, we were having fun with the hose yesterday. It was nearly 80 here, and wonderfully summery. The kids were a little hesitant at first, what with the cold hose water and all, but it didn't take long for them to "warm" right up to the idea of spraying themselves, and each other. I love being a mother and seeing my kids forge ahead through their fears.

And this is what happens when Mom and Dad sleep on a Saturday morning. This is how a 4 year old gets her own breakfast. Note the cut open box, and of course the opened bag of marshmallows. And what does a mom say about this mess? "Good job", of course. I love being a mother and teaching my kids independence. I love seeing them learn new skills, and seeing their self-esteem rise due to praise for their good decisions.

There are so many reasons I love being a mother. The more I think about it, the more my joy swells. Mostly I just love that I have this job, with basically no prior skills, and I feel like it is a natural fit. Even though I'm not the most nurturing, huggy touchy feely mother, I feel like teaching my kids to do things on their own, and stand up for themselves is just as important as holding their hands and carrying them around. Don't get me wrong, I do my fair share of hugging and kissing, they certainly aren't neglected in that area, it's just not my strong point. But that's okay. I hope I make up for that in other areas.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Mother's Day Week

Why I love being a mother

  • It makes me do things I would otherwise never have courage to do.
  • It makes me see things from a smaller, more innocent perspective.
  • It makes me more confident in my decision making skills.
  • It makes me rely on faith and promptings in a way I have never known.
  • It makes me stick to my guns, and stick up for my kids.
  • It makes me see how lucky I am to have healthy, happy kids.
  • It makes me appreciate my own mother more than ever.
Why do you love being a mother?

Monday, May 5, 2008

Feliz Cinco De Mayo

Mexican food. I love it. Like as in LOVE it.

And today we celebrate by eating Mexican food.

I have no idea why Cinco De Mayo is a holiday, I think it has something to do with freedom from the French or something, but I really don't care. Any excuse to eat Tamales, and Enchiladas, and rice and beans. I'll take it.

So happy day to you. Enjoy your freedom from the French.

And stay tuned this for a week of Mother's Day sweetness.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Friday Fun

If money were no object, (that is one of my favorite sentences, by the way) and you only had a week left to live, what would you do?

#1 Assume you are in great health. Let's pretend the world ends in a week. Mmmkay?
#2 Um, I guess that's it.

I'll start.

I'd charter a private jet, take my entire family around the world to all the destinations we would like to see. I'm thinking Holland, the Dead Sea, Iceland, Caribbean, Antarctica, and popular US destinations.

Then we'd fly back home, chill at Mom's, and just laugh and laugh with each other, just like we used to every Sunday night. We'd have a turkey dinner, followed by popsicles in the backyard under the shade of the weeping willow.

That would rock.

Now you.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


Poor, poor Sugar Daddy.

He snores. Bad. Like, as in fog horn bad. Like, as in he wakes me up several times a night with his baritone scales. Good thing he has perfect pitch.

To remedy this situation, we've made an addition to our bedroom. No, not separate beds, although I wouldn't complain, but something much more high tech. He now has to wear a CPAP to bed. He struggled at first with the face mask, and mostly the not being able to pick his nose all night long, but that's a whole nother post, but now he's doing fine with it. Problem is, he still snores. Hmm, what to do?

The doc has come up with a great new plan. Uvula removal. Say that five times fast. No, seriously, try it. You know you're doing it in you head, aren't you? Yeah, I did it to.

The Uvula is that oddly shaped, (and named) hangy ball thingy in the back of your throaty. Apparently it gets all sleepy and relaxed at night, as any good body part should, and falls backwards and partially blocks off the airway causing snoring, and in Sugar Daddy's case, sleep apnea. Sounds as if removal is the way to go.

So he goes under the knife on May 12th. Can you imagine the pain of having stitches in the back of your throat? I sure can't! But if it gets him, and me, a good nights sleep, it's worth the pain. I mean his pain. But we share pain, cause we're just that close.