Thursday, October 30, 2008

Leave A Message At The Beep

Keli can't come to the blog right now. You see, she and her Sugar Daddy have gone to the city for a night on the town. Good food, good shopping and good... Well, use your imagination. Let's just say it's been a while since they have been away from the kids.

So, Hyatt Regency, here they come. Thanks to for getting them a great deal, and thanks to Grandpa for watching the kids. Don't expect pictures, because it's not that kind of trip.

Later alligator.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Dang You Darci

A few weeks back, my loving cuz Darci from L-to-the-V blogged about her sweet kid pooping in the bathtub. You will want to scroll down a little bit to see the comments section. Go ahead, scroll. I'll wait. I'm waiting.

Did you see what I said? Yes, my kids had only ever done this once. Note that I said kids. With an S.

Until recently. Gretta has taken it upon herself to poop in the tub 4 more times since I wrote that comment.

Murphy's Law? Probably. Sick irony. Yep. For sure.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I love living just outside the Ghetto. It makes for fun times driving around town. And it makes me appreciate my surroundings. The other morning I was heading back from a muy delicioso breakfast of Nutella and banana crepes at Wildberry, when I was treated to this prime specimen of hoopdee hoopness.

Sorry for the poor picture quality. I was trying to drive and take a picture all at the same time. Shh, don't tell. But for those of you that can't tell, yes, those are in fact Twenty-Fo inch rims on a car. Yes, a car. Some trucks can't handle Twenty-Fo's. Niiice.

And here are the lovely ladies with whom I shared a nummy breakfast. Neighbor Kate and Cayden, and Rosalia, who we're still trying to convince needs a blog. Because every good mom needs a blog, right moms? And for the record, she has the cutest hair I've seen in a long, long time. And her little boy there, Giovanni, he didn't make a peep through the enitre breakfast. Which is more than I can say for Gretta. And Cayden.

But really, this breakfast has awakened in me a sense that I need to do those kind of things more often, and an appreciation of good friends who share my needs. Why oh why do we act like hermit crabs all winter? I mean besides the sub-zero temperatures? It felt so good to sit and chat about mom stuff, and kid stuff, and most importantly, woman stuff. It was like Relief Society. Only yummier.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Best Thing

For those of you that know me well, know that I likey my sleepy. I love taking naps, and I love sleeping in on cloudy, rainy days. Unfortunately, I have an early riser on my hands. Emma likes to get up around 6 or so, sometimes earlier. But it's not Emma that I'm talking about. Maggie, she could sleep in until 8, no prob, so it's not Maggie I'm talking about either.

It's Gretta. She wakes up at the first sound of life in the house. Which, unfortunately, is around 6 when Emma wakes up. Not.A.Good.Thing. But since I'm a loving, devoted mother, I arise and start off the day, doing my motherly duties of cereal and milk and making lunch. And of course I do all of this with a smile on my face, and a song in my heart. Sense the sarcasm here.

The other night, as I was getting G ready for bed, she became fixated on a Hello Kitty pillow that resides on the bunkbeds that share her room. She didn't want to leave that pillow alone on the bed. So I put the pillow in her crib, thinking she would be sick of it in no time. Turns out, she loves it. Yeah, she's 21 months old. She probably shouldn't be sleeping with a pillow. But she is.

And my life has suddenly become much, much easier. Now, her once short sporadic naps have become 2 hours or more. Heaven! And her habit of waking upon any sound in the house? Gone! She sleeps through anything now! I can even go in her room to check on her now, which is probably a good thing, since she's sleeping with a pillow and she's 21 months old, or have I mentioned that already?

So thank you, Hello Kitty. I never thought I would be grateful for a creepy kitten with a giant head, and yet, I am. Gretta thanks you too, from her very rested heart.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Send out the P.I.'s

Have you missed me? Be honest. You have, haven't you. Haven't you? Well, even if you haven't, I've missed you. Oh blogdom, do not a hater be. Please take some pity on my poor, slacker soul. You see, I've been so very busy. You will never understand the "ness" to which I've been busy. In the last 96 hours, I've played host to 8 guests, at 2 separate intervals. You don't understand the amount of time, and laundry detergent, that has been spent folding towels and sheets, and rugs, oh my!

Here is just a taste of what kind of things I've been up to recently.

Lugging around 6 kids. To dance, to the drug store, and to McDonalds. Where else could 6 kids be entertained simultaneously? In the picture are only 5, but you can't see the one sharing the cockpit of the vangina avec moi.

And here are their dear, dear parents. Parents for whom I have an immense respect, not only for traveling so far to attend the temple like dedicated Latter-Day Saints, but because I now understand the time and patience it takes to rassle 4 kids. I may have provided the cheeseburgers, and even though I skimped on the drinkage, there was nary a complaint. Good, good kids.

So dear blogdom, now you have my plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. Don't they call it by reason of mental disease or defect now? Probably, but either way, it fits. Do not fear, I will return. And I will return with a promise of more interesting posts, and pictures of various projects and children. So for now, dear blogdom, I bid you adieu.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Busy busy

We've been an in-law hosting house the last few days. It's been so awesome to have family come and visit. I love having the MIL here to entertain the kidlets with puzzles and games, and all other sorts of distractions. But I also love having the MIL here because she shares my love of all things craft. 'Cept she's good at it. So we've been keeping plenty busy around here with projects galore.

This is the first taste of what is to become many, many wonderful items. One is already finished, but it will have to wait. I know, the suspense, yeah yeah.

This is the other outlet du crafte. This was last nights family night project. My kitchen table was slathered with newspaper, and then the newspaper was topped with paints and pumkins and brushes, oh my! We ended up with a pumpkin per person, and one extra. I think they'll look quite loverly on the front porch.

Stay tuned for more excitement. We received a phone call this afternoon asking to be the B&B for more family members later this week. Of course I was more than happy to oblige, so it should bring some good times.

The Happiest

A shout out to my awesome bro. It's his birthday. He's a way hottie, I have it on pretty good authority that he's just getting better with age. Good job on that.

So here's to you, oh aged one. Have a mighty fine day.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Dancing Queen

Maggie has been taking dance lessons for the last month. And let me tell you, if there could be one girl that loves to dance more than any other girl on the Earth, it's Maggie. This girl, she amazes me. Just when I think she couldn't get more girly, she goes and does something that just makes my jaw drop. Like galloping. She gallops everywhere, because that is what she learned to do in dancing class. Here is a picture of her galloping around her gym. She's wearing a tail, and they were dancing to Jungle Book music. It was adorable.

And here she is looking possessed while trying to hop on one foot. She is really quite good at hopping, but it's hopping and looking graceful at the same time that trips her up.

Mostly I just love that she loves it. It's like soccer or any other sport kids choose to do. Seeing the joy of accomplishment in their eyes, and the thrill of the new and undiscovered that makes spending all that time each week freezing my butt off in a musty old gym worth it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Win Sumthin

If you like handbags, as I know you do, check here for a chance to win a brand new one. They are giving away a bag an hour for 24 hours! Crazy!

Thanks, Handbag Planet!

2nd Picture

I was tagged by Rachel, (which reminds me, I'm still not positively sure as to how to pronounce your name correctly. I've heard it like Ray-shell, and I've also heard it like Ruh-shell, so if you could enlighten me, that would be super!) who challenged me to post the 2nd picture ever uploaded to my computer. Wow, this is going way back in the way back machine. I have a few less chins, and Maggie has a whole lotta black hair! And I can't believe Emma. She's always seemed so grown up to me, but she looks so little in this picture. So here you go.

I think my BFF Lisa Blackburn took this picture, she also gave Emma that little dolly, which we still have! We also still have the jammies Emma has on. My mom gave those to Emma when I was still in the hospital after giving birth. Of course now, the sleeves and pants have been cut off to fit an ever growing child, and making them much more comfy. Gretta was just wearing them the other day, and they are trash-tastic! But I digress.

Maggie was about a week old in this picture, I think. I know she was still pretty new, because I can only fit in those jeans I have on for about the first 2 weeks after I have a baby. Then the tummy puffs back up, and there's no way in Hell those things are going on. They've been that way with all 3 babies. Plus, obviously I was still not sleeping much, just look at that shiny skin and the apparent lack of blow drying skills. Nice. Sugar Daddy is looking good as always, though. He's my babe.

Monday, October 13, 2008

And I Don't Even Smell Like Curry

This weekend I realized I'm not as low maintenance as I hoped. And of course, it all hits at once. Suddenly I needed a pedicure, my brows waxed and a good deep conditioner. The pedicure and deep conditioner will have to wait due to time constraints, but I was able to get the brows done.

I branched out, partly out of curiosity, mostly out of desperation. And I'm thrilled with the results. See what you think for yourself.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Things I've Learned Since Living In The Midwest

  • How to avoid dead racoons on the road
  • How to prove residency for everything
  • You're likely to be the only Mormon in your town
  • And probably the first one most people have met
  • The true meaning of "wind chill"
  • How to use a dehumidifier
  • That you can't pass on the right.
  • Game days are religious holidays
But most importantly, I've learned a lot about myself.
  • I can do pretty much whatever I set my mind to
  • I'm more self sufficient than I ever thought I could be
  • I enjoy discovering new places
  • I'm stronger than I ever thought I could be
  • I appreciate my family, both near and far, for the efforts they put in each day
I love living here. I love starting a new adventure for my family, and I love knowing that wherever we are, whatever the situation, we will always have each other.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Spiritual Aardvark Theory

I was listening to Kathy and Judy yesterday. They have a wonderful talk radio show that totally cracks me up. I'm not normally a talk radio person, because let's face it, I'm not that into politics, and I don't pretend to be smart enough to know what the heck they're talking about anyway. But K and J, their show reminds me of something like an audio blog. You know, just kind of random things, not much of a filter, etc. etc. Yesterday they had on a girl (woman?) that had just copyrighted a new "scientific theory". Now this is good. Apparently one day, she and her friend were watching TV, and a commercial came on that had a scene with a girl in an aardvark costume that was participating in a school play. She commented to her friend about how random an aardvark was, and how you never see them. Well, the next day, for some odd reason, the word aardvark came up 3 different times, with no help from her! So this got her thinking. Doesn't this happen a lot? You see something, or hear something, and sure enough, it's everywhere. It's like your brain is suddenly more aware of that specific subject, so you notice it more.

I have taken this theory one step further (farther? I can never remember, please correct me, Eliza). When we were dealing with the sickness and subsequent death of my mom, we were all acutely aware of so many miracles happening around us every day. From the smallest things, like the hospital cafeteria having the best cookies ever, to the big things, like all being in the right place at the right time to be there when she needed us most. Whatever the miracles, we saw them. Sadly, I've started to be blinded to them again. I knew it would happen, life takes over, and days turn into weeks, and before you know it, months have passed. We were all living in a cocoon of small miracles for those 6 weeks, and lived and breathed to see a miracle every day. Now, it's just a matter of making it through the day.

So I've decided to reinstate the Spiritual Aardvark Theory in my life. I need to start looking for those miracles every day. I need to see it in my kids, in life around me, and most of all, in myself. I need to have the courage to make it over this hump and to embrace the miracles that I am entitled to. That we're all entitled to. I need my eyes opened to the gifts that are all around me. I need to see that life has a meaning beyond the hurt and pain I feel now. Any ideas are welcome, but mostly, just a big thanks to all of you for reading this. I know, it gets all blah blah blah, but it helps my brain.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Birthday Girl

Today is Maggie's birthday. She's 5. I can't believe that I have kept a human being alive for 5 years. Some things we love about Maggie are:

She is always crafting. She loves to cut and paste, and color and draw, and sing and dance and dress up.

She is very smart. She had an evaluation done for her speech class. She scored the highest possible points. She gets that from her mother. ;)

She is very, um, shall we say, determined. She knows what she wants, and she will do whatever it takes to get it. She gets this from Sugar Daddy.

She has a special affinity for Nunn Bee. Nunn Bee is my mom's mom, who died before Maggie was born. Yet somehow, Maggie knows all about her. Especially that Nunn Bee gave her all that hair she has. I love that they share old souls.

She is very independent. She will climb on counters and chairs and stools if it warrants getting something she's after. This is a trait I love.

So Maggie, I love you. You are very special. I know you chose to come to our family because you knew you'd be happy here. You have a very special spirit, and have a definite sense of right and wrong. Thank you for being so sweet and kind. You are a wonderful daughter!

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Wow. Today is quite the day. It's a Sunday, which is not a usual blogging day for me. But today, today I have to write. There are just too many words in my head, and let's face it, it gets crowded in there with the voices.

Today is my mom's birthday. She'd be 60. I miss her. A lot.

Today is also Conference Sunday. She loved Conference Sunday. She would cook turkey dinner, and we would meet up at her house to eat between sessions. It was the best.

17 years ago today, she and my dad were returning home with my brother from his mission to Japan. And guess what? She made sure Jill knew how to cook the turkey dinner so it would be ready for us when they arrived home.

1 year ago today we were enjoying our last "girls trip" to Seattle. We had the best time. The underground tour, the locks cruise, and Ruth's Chris. We practically had to wrestle my mom to the ground to get that bill away from her. But we did it, and it was the least we could do to show our appreciation. I would wrestle her to the ground in a second now, if i could.

I'm not sure if it's a good thing or a bad thing that all of these events circle around this date. I find it strange that this has always been a special weekend for our family, even back 17 years. I know it will be comforting to hear our Prophet speak each year, around her birthday, and know that the words he and his disciples say will bring comfort to me. The last few days have been very emotional because of the anticipation of this weekend. I've had my share of anxiety attacks, pity party, and crying during dinner. But now, now I know that I have the knowledge and keys to see her again. And that makes this weekend even more special.

And I will be making a turkey dinner in her honor. Yams and all. And I will do it every conference Sunday, just like she did.

Happy birthday, Mom. I love you. I miss you.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


It's been 3 years.

1 new kid,
1 new house,
1 cross country move,
1 death,
Lots of good times.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Happy Day To You

Hey, did you hear?


She's 27.

She rocks.

So head over to her blog and wish her a happy day.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

7 Crazy Things

I've been tagged, as have so many others. Here goes nothin'.

1. I'm afraid of a lot of things. Tap water. Fruit. Eyeballs and Toenails. The dark.

2. I have issues with my sheets. The bottom sheet has to be taut. The top sheet cannot be pulled up too high. And then there's the whole thing with my pillow. I buy a new pillow every couple of weeks. No kidding. Ask Sugar Daddy. They can be the cheap ones, I prefer those actually. And if anyone, especially Sugar Daddy lies on my pillow, it grosses me out. The "head smell" on my pillow of another person is so disgusting. It must be all those years of doing hair.

3. I tend to be a bitch. Not really, but I'm a little shy (oh, ha ha, I know, but really, I am), and I think people mistake it for being a snob or something. After they get to know me of course, they know I'm a bitch, so it's okay.

4. I don't like to fly. This causes a problem with living across the country from my favorite people in the world. It's a

5. I have a strangely low butt crack. You know how girls will wear low rise pants, and sometimes the butt crack is right on the precipice? Not mine. It's weird. But I'm grateful.

6. I can do the splits. I can do them 2 ways now, and if I'm really warmed up, I can still do the middle splits as well. It's freaky.

7. I produce freakish amounts of ear wax. There are times when just randomly a big chunk of wax will fall out of my ear. If I use a Q-Tip, which is rare because I've been reprimanded several times about putting anything smaller than your elbow in your ear, when I pull it out, it is covered in wax. It is seriously so gross. But what can a girl do?

So there you go. 7 of the countless things about me that are strange and wonderful. Now you know me better than you ever hoped you could. You're welcome.

I tag: KELLI and MEG, so they will have a good excuse to update their blogs, finally! JILL, NIKKI, KATHIE, and HEIDI, because I think they don't have enough to do all day so they need this to keep them busy.

So Exciting

Gretta is definitely my silly girl. She is full of spunk, and isn't afraid to show it. She dances like the white girl she is, and doesn't back down to mean neighbor boys that try and steal her milky.
She also likes to find strange and new places to hide. The latest has been sitting inside my desk drawer. She barely fits. But she manages to climb on in, and make herself right at home. I caught her the other day, and she is showing me her "excited" face. It reminds me of the mask from "Scream".

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Cuff Me, Part Dos

As I exited Kindermusik, which Gretta absolutely loves, I lingered a while in the parking lot chit chatting with Dubya and J-Lo. We had lots of stuff to catch up on, as we always do, but mostly we were waiting for Lil' Jo to settle down, since I was apparently ripping him away from his mother's womb while she visited the dentist later that day. It's always such an awkward situation when you know you're a perfectly capable babysitter, but for some reason, the kid just doesn't want to believe you, and cries and cries, and the mom gives you that look, like, "are you sure you're okay with this?" . I was totally okay with taking him, but he just didn't want to leave. I don't blame him, she's an awesome mom, she bakes things like German Chocolate Cake Bars, and Ribs and Red Beans and Rice, and Home Made Rolls. I make things like McDonalds Chicken McNuggets, so really, there's no comparison. I should get to my point or this post will be a freaking novella.

So we sat there, chatting in the parking lot, and a Park Ranger Police car pulls up next to my van. I instantly start making smart ass comments to Dubya and J-Lo about how he "found them out" and "oh, now they're hauling you in". I'm so funny. This is when Mr. Park Ranger approaches and knocks on my window. I unroll it just enough to speak through, thinking for some reason he knows me, or knows Sugar Daddy, or something. He asks me to "step out of the car, ma'am." Uh, okay.

So out I go, still thinking in the back of my mind that this is some sort of practical joke, or that Ashton has finally decided to Punk me. He then asks for my Driver's License and Proof of Insurance. I supply his request as quickly as I could, all the while giving off an air of "okay Ashton, I'm totally on to you". He then proceeds to tell me that he has it on good authority that someone saw me pull in to the parking lot, park, leave, and return a short time later. In that frame of time, someone hit the back of his Police Car, breaking off the attached bike rack. He wants to go ahead and do a paint match test, since he has silver to black paint transfer on the offending piece of broken bike rack. I tell him to go ahead, but I never left the parking lot, I pulled in and stayed the entire hour. Besides, it's freaking Kindermusik, there are approximately 319 minivans in the parking lot, 74 of which are silver*.

He starts trying to match up the bike rack with the various dents and scratches** in my van, none of which really match. Then he asks how far away I live. "Like 5 minutes," I say. "How many vehicles do you own?" he asks. "Three", I say. "So, it would be feasible for you to have hit my car, left the scene, driven home, and returned in a different vehicle?" Hmm. I guess I had never really thought of that. Me being the smart ass that I am, start popping off a little. "Well, considering one of my vehicles is a 1949 blue Chevy truck that doesn't run, that's not an option. And the other one is a lifted Dodge truck, so it would have done a lot more than just a little bike rack damage." I'm so funny. Again. He doesn't think so. Finally, he gets it. I'm not his man. I have witnesses to my whereabouts. There is no evidence. He countenace softens and he proceeds to tell us that now it's a felony hit and run, blah blah blah. At this point, it just barely has hit me that I was pretty dang close to being hauled off to the slammer. Now that would have been a good story.

* I may have embellished that statistic a little.
** There was an incident in which I was trying to back out of the snow covered driveway, across the snow bump the plow leaves. I went for it full force, almost made it, and then hit right into both garbage cans that had been placed right in my blind spot. Whose fault is that? Mine? The snow plow's? Sugar Daddy's? The jury's still out. There are also a few scratches from someone, ahem, not me, backing into the garage and not realizing they weren't pulled in far enough before closing the garage door.