For my recipe blog go to:

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I am housewife...hear me roar!

I went to get new glasses the other day.

A Russian woman was "helping" me. ("Helping"- meaning she showed me where all the designer frames were, gestured nonchallantly to the "rest" of the frames- which I took as her thinly veiled opinion that the "rest" of the frames were utter poop, and then left me to my own defenses.)

When I had chosen my favorites, she then informed me the rimless pair I had chosen was on special that day- for only $400! *cough, cough*

"Uh... I thought you said they were on sale!" I choked out.
"Oh, dey are. Dese are designer, so you know, you vill be paying more...obviously."

I said nevermind and handed her my second pair- horn rimmed cuties, also from the "designer" rack, but on sale.

"Put zem on," she said just staring at me.

I did as she commanded. She smiled and said she approved. "Oh yes, dese look very good on you. Good choice, dese horn rimmed are very in-fashion right now."

Yes, I may be a stay-at-home mom and housewife, but I do have some idea of the going fashion right now, thank you.

I went to pick out my second pair that were NOT designer, rimless, pocket-bleeders. It only took me a few moments because I had had my eye on another pair earlier before I decided on the rimless. I grabbed them and took them up.

"I'll take these, then," I said as I put them down.

"Put zem on," she said again with a very somber expression on her face.

I obeyed. This time, no smile of approval. No nod of agreement. Just dead face.
"Hmmm... " she said as I took them off.
"Put zem back on. I vant to see again."
Ok.
"Vell... do you like zem?"
Now, I'm no idiot. I know this is her way of saying she hates them, they are not from the designer rack, they do not cost an arm and a first born child, these will NOT do, in her opinion.
However, I am confident enough in my choice. I like thise simpler, more understated, cheaper pair.
"Yes. I do like them. I think they have a classic look. I'll take them!"
"Hmm.... put zem back on again."
I hessitated before doing it this time. She was trying to let me know she knew better than I what looks good, but I had to strongly disagree. After all, she had horrible orange-blonde hair from a bottle. How good could her taste be?
But I put them back on.
"Hmm.....vell, ok, den."

So, I pick up my new glasses today. Maybe I'll post pictures. Maybe the russian mafia will come after me for not capitulating. Maybe I will hang my head for the next several years as I wear the glasses of shame. Or, maybe I really do know what looks good on me. Either way, it's done. I am, however, just a little teensy bit proud of myself for not succombing to russian woman's scare tactics, and standing my ground. I find this sense of power a bit refreshing. Maybe I will just hold my head higher today.
I am housewife. Hear me roar!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

My blog has the wrong name...

I re-named my blog the other day, and it bugs me to death. Why? Because it is not the truth. Chaos, yes. Organized, not by a long shot!

I've heard it said that artists minds tend to be less organized because we always have projects and ideas floating around, crowding out any place where organization might take its place. This is definitely true of my mind!

But I didn't really come here to talk about how messed up my mind is. So, if this was an essay for high school english, I would get an "F" because the opening sentence does not reflect the true topic of the paper. However, it does represent the scatter-brained nature of my ever-morphing mind! So, in a way it really is fitting now that I think of it.

Anyway, what was I saying? Oh yes, the true reason to write today is to air my frustration at this lack of snow we are having this Christmas season. I live in a state where a white Christmas is absolutely expected! If I wanted a green Christmas I would live in Hawaii!

I have been having a very difficult time getting into the holiday spirit this Christmas. Partly due to the fact that the whole ugly truth about Santa was exposed in all its blaring nakedness last week, and my son's twinkling child-like illusion came crashing down in one giant heap of broken dreams. But I think it is also partly due to the fact that we have had NO snow... at all! No glowing christmas lights illuminating the fluffy white heaps of snow on our bushes and eaves of our house. No giant floating flakes that stay on your nose and eyelashes. No snowman gracing our front lawn in mismatched gloves and old scarf.

So, my prayer this Christmas is that there be snow!!!! I'm not getting any Christmas presents this year (that I am aware of. And I am always aware of all the presents I get because I purchase them and then wrap them, write a note "to my lovely wife whom I adore forever and ever, love your husband" and pretend to be totally surprised when I open them on Christmas morning. But I spent way too much on gifts for my husband and son I decided to forgo any presents I might get.) But the one thing I absolutely insist upon this year is snow! Lots and lots of snow! Piles of snow! Snow I have to shovel three times in one day to clear off the sidewalks! (Hey, then I might get myself a snow blower for Christmas and act totally surprised when I open it on the big day! What an idea!)

So, pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease.... let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!!!!!!

(And let me get a little more organized, too. There, now I tied it all in!)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

New Look...

I color my hair because it makes for a cheap new change when I need one.

I wear red lipstick when I want to feel on top of the world, whether I actually am or not!

I wear a dress or skirt when I'm feeling pretty, or want to feel pretty.

And I re-dress my blog when I'm bored.

So, the blog got a make-over today. New name, new face. Consider it red lipstick and a new hair color for the blog!

Happy Holidays!!!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Who cares???

I think I can honestly say I have reached a point in my life where I really just don't care what others think of me. And let me say, it is freeing! I gave a lesson in church on Sunday. The stress of planning the lesson the weeks before Thanksgiving really got to me. I had trouble thinking about what to say, how to say it, etc. In the end I just put it aside and enjoyed turkey and pie.

Saturday afternoon I picked it back up again. Suddenly the thoughts all came together and I knew what I was going to say. I gave the lesson on Sunday and ended up having way too much information, rather than not enough- which is good. And when I finished, I packed up my things and left. I didn't worry about did people like it, or did it touch someone, or offend anyone (which is often the case!) No, I just felt good because I had done my very best.

I realized in the end it is just you and God. If you do your best with what you are given, He knows it. He knows who you are and what your needs are and what all your faults are and why you have those faults. Everyone in the world has faults and they have to deal with them in their own way. I am glad to know it just doesn't matter what others think of me! You should all try it!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Married to Superman

Last night I dreamed of Superman. Yes, blue tights, red cape and all. I was a student in college, just sitting outside a building studying. Suddenly, my eyes were drawn up from my books at the sight of bright red boots, tight fitting blue spandex over unrealistically muscular legs, and a flapping red cape descended from above me and landed next to me, with token hands on hips.

Of course I was amazed, stunned, aghast...you name it! Superman! Was sitting right next to me! He spoke to me, and I have no memory of what he said because I was so gobsmacked by the whole experience. He said something about wanting to take me out, but that he'd be right back because at that moment someone needed his help. And just like that, he was gone.

My dream ended before he returned, sadly. I awoke smiling and trying to get back to sleep so I could find out what Superman wanted with me. As I was thinking about my dream I remembered as a 10 year old girl how much I adored Superman. I mean THE Superman- Christopher Reeve. I loved him soooo much I was quite sure it was possible for me to marry him someday. Once, my dad too me to a wax museum in California, and there was a statue of Superman. I had to pose for a picture next to him, my frizzy perm and all. But I was in love.

Thinking about my dream I began thinking of my sweet husband. We celebrated 12 years of wedded bliss in October, and for the most part, it really HAS been wedded bliss. We are the best of friends. He just "gets" me like no one else. He laughs at most of my lame jokes. He knows exactly what to tell me when I am feeling low. He knows just when to step in and offer to bring dinner home. He is my real-life super hero.

Last night I was tending my 4 neices and nephews. I was in the middle of trying to make dinner in my tiny kitchen with the table pulled out to the middle of the room so everyone could fit around it. In one arm was my little niece- who was crying because she was afraid of my husband who had just walked in the door, while my other arm was frantically trying to fix hot dogs for everyone, chicken quesadillas for the grown-ups, and pulling french fries out of the oven before they burned, all while searching for an inch or two of empty counterspace to put the hot pan.

My sweet husband, knowing my niece who was screaming in my arms because she was deathly afraid of my husband, graceously offered to take her and try to read to her so I could finish fixing dinner. He patiently read her pop-up books in the living room while she screamed constantly in his ears for about 20 minutes until dinner was ready. He didn't come in frustratedly thrusting the child in my arms again saying "she's all yours". No, he was the picture of calm and my own personal heaven-sent angel!

Then, after all the kids left, I informed him our son had been planning a "mommy slumber party" for months and we had put it on the calender for that night. That meant mommy would be sleeping in the guest bed with the kid- away from the husband. (Because three in the bed is just a recipe for a horrible night's sleep! I know- we've done it before.) He just smiled and offered for all of us to watch a movie before bed. He even went out into a snowstorm to get me some diet Pepsi and chocolate, because I NEEDED it! It reminded me of when he left in the middle of the night on our wedding night to get me some cold medicine because I had a horrible sore throat.

I realized then on my wedding night, and again last night, that I indeed have married Superman. He doesn't need any blue tights or shiny red boots. He doesn't need to fly with his fist extended forward and one hand on his hip. He works hard, and treats me like a princess. I couldn't ask for anyone more suited for me.

So, after I couldn't get back to sleep this morning to dream about Superman, I realized, all I had to do was wake up. I had Superman in my very own house! I love you, Sweetie!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

My list of I don't regrets and I wishes...

I don't regret:
-not hiring a wedding photographer. I know, but it worked out just fine!
-marrying the man I did. He is a little goofy, to be sure, but I adore him!
- being a stay-at-home mom. Hard work, no recognition, but HUGE rewards!
- that piece of chocolate cake last night. (well, ok, maybe just a little.)
-putting too many exclamation points when I write. It expresses my personality in black and white!
- "most" of the things I say before thinking, which is just about everything that comes out of my mouth!
- my decision to send my kid to private school. Biggest blessing!
-that night in Paris so long ago when the air smelled of roasted nuts and pipe tobacco, and his cologne smelled of.... what? Oh, I guess that didn't really happen.
-my inability to remember movies I've seen several times. It's like seeing it the first time every time I watch them!
-my testimony of the gospel. It is my greatest comfort!!!


I wish:
-my home was big enough to host Thanksgiving dinner for all the extended family. I would LOVE to cook the huge turkey with all the trimmings and have everyone here! *sigh*
- I could stand to wear 5" platform heels. I adore them!
- my hair was as thick as it was in high school.
-I could find the perfect shade of deep red lipstick. Still looking.
-more moms could stay home with their kids.
-I wasn't afraid of the dentist.
-teleportation was real. I'd be in Ireland or Wales right.... NOW! *poof*
- I could go back to the 1950's and be a housewife in an apron with red lips in an era I felt like I belonged! (I could teleport there!)
- I was going on another cruise with my hubby and son!
- I lived next door to my mom and my sister!!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Beautiful video about the Book of Mormon!

Monday, November 7, 2011

House Dress Revolution!

I have a secret desire, soon to be revealed. Right...about...now.

I want to bring back the house dress.


No, not this:


I wouldn't be caught dead in this!

No, something more modern and chic, like this:

Yes, I am old fashioned. That is an understatement! But I also want to look beautiful for my cute husband when he gets home. I think a house dress could do that for me. I could wear it all day long cleaning, then pretty up my hair and put on some deodorant and Voila! I'm a beautiful, waiting-at-the-door-with-a-fresh-popped-can-of-mtn.Dew-kind of housewife! (No shaken martinis at this household, nosiree!)

So what do you say? Join me in the new house dress revolution??? Are you with me, ladies?
How about this one?

And one of each of these!!!

Yes, ladies, it is a sickness.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Always kiss me goodnight with vinyl

I never thought I'd be one of "those" women. The ones who plaster their walls in vinyl cut-outs. Well, never say never.

I didn't know what to do with my kitchen walls, and found this darling branch and birds design. This morning, in about 20 minutes, I created art on my kitchen wall!

It went from this-

Before:


To this-
after:

and this:


Next project:
Put up wording above my bed that says: Always kiss me goodnight... but brush your teeth first! (Ok, maybe not... but it's tempting!)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Yay for this fun earthly existance. Right?

This year's Halloween preparation has been... well.... weird.

I usually get totally into Halloween. Well, by "totally", I mean, I get out my cute decorations for the livingroom, put out my halloween pillows, hang up a halloween wreath outside, maybe string some lights. I listen to halloween music all day long, watch old scary movies, and bake like crazy. I'm usually on top of the halloween costume for my little buddy early on and just putting on the finishing touches about now.

This year??? Well, not so much. It started out great. I've been watching old scary movies quite frequently as I fold laundry or do other mundane household chores. But with my husband's new calling in church things have been in a state of chaos.

To top it all off, our basement flooded over the weekend and I had to totally trash my sewing room to get to the flooding closet. Lost a lot of my fabric, too. Bleh! So I have to muck out the muck to get to the half-finished costume today.

Not to mention the pressure that has been put on my by my little buddy. He said "Mom, every costume has to top the costume the year before it, just so you know." Ya. No pressure! Last year I spent about an entire week, several hours a day, working on his Prince of Persia costume. The year before I spent about that same amount of time perfecting his Jack Sparrow costume. This year... well, I think I've put in a total of about 4 hours so far. Legolas is NOT going to be stunning, let's just say that.

I'm trying not to feel like I've failed in some way because I haven't put my entire heart and soul and bank account into this costume. But honestly, I just haven't really cared this year. I hope it doesn't show when all is said and done, though. I'm sure it will be just fine.

And the whole point of Halloween is loads of candy anyway, right? So as long as he gets his sugar rush we're good, right?

Well, I'm counting on that as I try to find my sewing machine under piles of fabric and bags of trim. That is, after I put all the fans away and clean up all the mops and towels and try to tack down the carpeting again from the flood. Yay for this fun earthly existance, right??? :( hee hee

Monday, October 17, 2011

Chocolate cake makes anything go down easier!

Wow! What a day we had yesterday!
My husband was put into the bishopric as the second counselor in church yesterday. I sat there in amazement at the incredible bishop we had, and thinking how grateful I was to have such a sweet, kind-hearted bishop. Then the new bishopric gets put in and I felt ovewhelmed with love for each of them and thinking how YOUNG they all looked! I got choked up as the new bishop spoke about following and acting on the promptings of the Spirit, and letting it take you where you need to be. He talked about how they wanted to move many times but it didn't feel right. That one really spoke to me, for sure!

So it looks like I'll be seeing a lot less of my hubby for a while! My relief society president told me it was good because there'd be fewer chances to not get along! She is so cute!

Today I am grateful for family support, church members with kind words of encouragement, and chocolate cake from Costco which I had no reservations about having two slices of yesterday.

Now on to the treadmill to work off that cake! Here's to a new week, and a new adventure!

Monday, October 10, 2011

sad, sad day.

I just heard some incredibly shocking news and I am reeling from it all. I barely slept a wink last night. Some dear, dear friends of ours are getting a divorce, and it is breaking my heart. We used to do things with them all the time. Our kids played together, did egg hunts together. We had them over for breakfast to watch conference occasionally. They were a solid couple, weathering difficult storms. They had a beautiful family. I looked up to them, and prayed for them often.

I just spent the last 20 minutes writing and re-writing, deleting, and writing, then deleting again- strong words about divorce. I decided not to put them here for now. I am too upset.

But I am really mourning the loss of our dear, sweet friends' family today. And my prayers are reaching out to those poor darling kids.

Sad, sad day.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Simple Irritable Housewife syndrome....I've got it, apparently.

Tonight I needed someone else to do the cooking. I wanted something warm, something comforting, something homey, and I didn't want to be the one to have to put it all together.

It was one of those days- you know, the ones where little irritating things seem to go wrong all day long. My potted plant broke and got dirt all over. I got the whole bed made up with clean sheets and found I had lost two pillow cases which could not be found anywhere. I stubbed my toe about 50 times on the leg of a chair. Just one of those days. Many might say just the simple little irritations of a common, everyday housewife.

Well, when my sweet hubby got home from his long day at work, he sensed my frustration and offered to take us all to dinner. My hero! We went to this family restaurant near our home. Let me tell you, who knew a crispy breaded country fried steak with mashed potatoes and gravy (which was the size of Texas, and which I shared with my husband, thankfully!) and an ice cold diet pepsi could solve all my ills? There is no more comforting thing than snuggling cozy around a table eating good food with my cute little family on a cold rainy night.

Thank heaven for good food, good service, loving family, and cozy warm beds to snuggle into on a fall night. This simple irritable housewife is content.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Nice to get away sometimes.

Last weekend we took a very short trip to St. George and Zion National Park, and boy, was it needed!

My husband LOVES to hike Angels Landing, but I won't let him do it alone. (I know, mean wife, huh. I also won't let him ride his bike all the way to the top of 2700 S. without a helmet. Call me a shrew if you want to.) But, I lovingly arranged for him to hike with some family members, and Saturday was the most beautiful day to go. (pay no attention to the date stamps on the pictures. My camera thinks it is 2010.) (Oh, and I tried to get the images going the right direction... I think it would take a rocket scientist to get it right! Sorry.)



My mom, my sister and her kids, and me and my son hiked around the lower portions of Zion


My sister's drool machine, aka cutest baby ever, was in a front carrier and he was the best hiker of all! I had a fun time with the nieces and nephews. I even got to wash out pee'd in underpants in the virgin river!

I know, lucky me! (don't let anyone read this. I don't think you're supposed to do that sort of thing. The deer can do it, and the little squirrels can do it, but little 4 year olds can't I guess.) I'm certain if I'd seen another woman washing out underwear in the river I would have snubbed my nose at her and cast judgement on her, so I welcome it, I guess.

I got to search for little shy gnomes hiding in the forrest as I hiked with my cute niece back from seeing the lower Emerald Pool.

I was trying to distract her from complaining about not wanting to walk and wanting to be carried. Frankly, I wanted to be carried too! It worked. She couldn't stop talking about gnomes after that! (Yes, folks, I'm that good.)

Loved not having to fix breakfast for 2 whole days, sitting on the green lawn outside the Zion lodge eating sandwiches, smelling the fresh air of the gorgeous canyon, getting my feet wet in the Virgin, and eating at our favorite mexican place, Paula's.

Sunday my hubby, my son, and I went back for our last dose of Zion for the year. We did the hanging garden trail which we'd never done before and saw a super tiny frog- about an inch long!

Then my husband talked me into doing the "other" trail connected to the one we were on. Ya, it ended up rising about 300 feet in several switchbacks along a 3 foot wide trail with a sheer drop-off on one side.

My son kept saying "Ooo mom... don't look down!) I about sold him to the nearest asian. (There were about a hundred of them and they all thought he was cute. It wouldn't have been hard to find a buyer, I'm sure!)



We reluctantly left that afternoon after indulging in a delicious ice cream cone. The drive home was long and a bit forlorn as we know we wouldn't be back for several months. But it was sooo nice to see Zion in the fall. I love that place! And I had such a great time with my family!!!!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Must watch!

Yesterday was a struggle.
Then I watched this, and I felt much better.
Love Pres. Uchdorf!!!!

http://lds.org/general-conference/watch/2011/10?vid=1180453706001&cid=7&lang=eng

Monday, September 26, 2011

Roller coaster and merry-go-round all at once! Pass the barf bag, please!

Wow. Ever have one of those weeks that turns into two that turns into three horrible, stressful, no time for anything, weeks? Well, we're going on week three here, people. And let me tell you, I've got more gray hairs!

This morning started out with me, bright and cheerful (acting... I was only acting!) trying to wake up the kiddo for school. "Get up, Bud. Gotta get up early today so you can practice piano this morning before school!" Then I went in every 5 minutes for the next 35 minutes to remind him to get up. I finally gave up trying to get him up early enough to practice piano and just let him get up whenever. He dragged himself out of bed 15 minutes before we were supposed to leave, slowly ate his oatmeal and proceeded to fall asleep at the table. I guess he had a bad night or something.

Then, the entire 13 minute drive to school he cried, screamed, yelled, kicked, gritted his teeth, and squeezed the dickens out of my finger- mad that he had to go to school when he was tired and why did I tell him he would get used to this earlier schedule and why was I making him go to school when he was sleepy. Ya.I've been there before. Not going to take you home. Fun times.

I won't even get into the stress at home right now. Work, unfinished remodeling projects, real estate school, month-end overtime, church callings... (and we haven't even gotten to me yet!)

So I guess I just wanted to vent to someone, even if it is cyberspace and everyone else just passes this one over. Maybe it's best you do.

I am just wondering, when does the world slow down a bit so we can take a breath and get to know eachother again? Someone stop this ride so I can get off!!!!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Little Perspective...

Life has been running at full speed the last few weeks. There has been a lot of good, but at times I've felt overwhelmed, occasionally depressed, frustrated.... well, the list goes on. (Am I not describing every mom out there?) But I watched this video and it put things into perspective.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I knew it was bound to happen...

Ha! Again, Ha! (as my cute grandpa used to say.)  I knew I would do it sooner or later, and I was right!

With my son's new shorter school schedule, I just KNEW I would be out shopping one day and forget to leave to pick him up. I told myself, Erin, you should set the alarm on your cell phone so you don't forget to leave on time, but did I do it? Of course not! I never listen to my nagging. My husband doesn't, why should I?

So I was happily picking out fabric for my new sewing venture (which I'll mention another time) when I suddenly had this voice in my head shout "Erin, go pick your son up from school you bad mother, you!"  (Yes, the voice is a little condescending!)  I looked at my phone for the time and saw I was 5 minutes late in leaving! Yet, here I was with a whole cart full of 6 bolts of fabric, trim, foam, and other sundries. I didn't have time to get it all cut and checked out. What was I to do?

I had to leave the whole cart there and run out. I barely made it in time to pick up my little guy, but I made it! Phew! We quickly dashed back to the fabric store in the hopes that my cart would still be sitting there, derelict in the corner of the cotton calico section. Alas, some dutiful worker had cleaned it all up. I had to do my shopping all over again. And I ended up deciding I didn't need as much fabric as I thought, so that goes to show you Joann's worker: don't be so hasty to put things away. You make less money!

Actually, it goes to show me- I'd better figure out how to set the alarm on my phone so it doesn't happen again, which I just KNOW it will! *Note to my son's future therapist: Just remember all the other really good things I do like make cookies, cook homemade dinners every night, sing to you in bed, and stay up with you when you're sick. I wasn't so bad after all, was I? So forget the times when I forgot to pick you up from school because I was in fabric heaven at the fabric store. Let me have my moments!  

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fun at the Fair...

I have gone to the Utah State Fair every year of my entire life (with the exception of one, I think.)  See, I grew up about 4 blocks from the fairgrounds. Every year, usually on opening day, we'd come home from school, do our homework, and then my dad would pick us up and we'd walk to the fairgrounds.  We'd look at art, and crafts, and giant pumpkins, and I would always be afraid of the huge bulls and pooping cows. We'd squeel at the baby piggies, eat exotic foods, and stuff our faces with way too much carmel apples, cotton candy, and indian fry bread with honey butter.  I loved watching all the freaky people that come out of their dark corners of the universe to do the same thing we were doing.

Well, of course, I have continued that tradition with my son. The earlier years were mostly looking at the animals (and yes, am still afraid of the huge bulls, but not as much so;) and riding the ponies, and maybe a ferris wheel or two.  But this last trip to the fair was the best of them by far!

My son is 10 now. I made him accompany me to the home arts building and the arts and crafts building, and of course, the art building. I was prepared for eye-rolling and a lot of whining. You know what I got? "Mom, look at that! You could make that!" or "Mom, I could totally make that. Do you think we could try one day?" and "Look at that beautiful painting! Look at the use of light and shadow...".  My heart swelled within me!!!! 

We walked with our arms around eachother the whole time, ate delicious food, watched a giant cow being milked, (brought back memories of when I was a new mom...) enjoyed a hypnotist show- which I still think is all a hoax, ate slushie drinks and indian fry bread, saw a giant pumpkin almost 900 pounds, learned how bees make honey, watched two parrots mating, and had the best time ever!!!

I can't wait for next year!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Aaaaaannnnd......we're off!

Couldn't sleep last night. Anxiously awaiting first day of school. Nervous jitters. Fears of not remembering where the class is. Fears of forgetting to bring a sharpened pencil. Fears that traffic will be so bad he doesn't make it to school on time.

And then I told myself to just calm down and chill out!

You got it, the nervous one was me! My son was cool as a cucumber, as always. He marched right into the school like he owned the place. And when I went to give him a gushy goodbye, I'll miss you, be good and listen and don't pick your nose and don't be annoying and remember who you are hug and sloppy mommy kiss I got the quick cheek turn. Yep, he's in 5th grade now. No more mommy smooches I guess. :(

It was strange to drive away from the only school he has ever known, the one he has walked to every day for 6 years since preschool. It was strange to hear the loud speakers of the school from my kitchen window and know that my son was not one of those kids reciting the pledge of allegience.  But it was also nice having that quiet time as we drove to his new school downtown. We listened to classical music and felt the warm sunshine beating down on our face as we got on the freeway. It was nice to have a few extra minutes together to just talk before school. Usually it's rush rush rush hurry brush your teeth eat your breakfast no you don't have time to give the dog a kiss goodbye hurry run to school there's the bell goodbye I love you!  So I think I might like this new arrangement.

So, a new school year begins. I am finally calming my nerves. Part of me will miss the summer, but it is definitely good to have him back in school. Now, when do I get to pick him up again?

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Good decision. I love it when I am such a good parent!

Ok. My concerns about messing up my child for life by sending him to private school have been obliterated.

Last night was a parent's meeting at the school with the teachers and it was fantastic!

 Get this: This school prays every morning before class.
                This school recites part of the preamble of the constitution, and various other famous writings  every morning.
                 This school requires each child to memorize a poem every week. (I remember my grandpa telling me he had to do this growing up and always had a great poem to tell.)
                  This school takes 6th graders and up to the Shakespearean festival every year to view a play they are reading.
                  This school has two faculty members (principal included) who work, UNPAID, because they believe in a good education.
                  My son's class has 12, count them- 12, students!!!!!!
                  Every kid learns latin to better their understanding of language and grammar.
                  The school day is from 8 - 12, so more time for extra-curicular activities.
                  Aaaaannndddd.... there is a family who lives just a few blocks away from us who wants to carpool so we can each have a week off!!!! I'm sold!

I am super excited for this year now!!!! Big sigh of relief.... bring it on, baby! (Is it next Tuesday yet?)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

"The big hard decision" (or, "My kid is really going to need therapy someday!")

Ok, let's face it, every parent has NO clue what they are really doing as a parent. It's a shot in the dark when it comes down to it. (And we will never admit this to our kids, right?) We face decisions every day about things that we never encountered when we were kids, that our parents never had to face because there weren't things like internet and cell phones and violent video games. (Asteroids was pretty edgy, I admit, but nothing compared to what is available now!)

I am finding myself constantly scratching my head at some of the choices I have to make as a parent. However, I think I'm doing pretty well, overall. My hubby and I discuss things together and usually agree. My son is reasonably accepting of our decisions with the average amount of "why mom" and "but, but...".  And in the end he is really good at complying and moving on. (When I put my foot down about NOT playing Halo under any circumstances whatsoever, he didn't even argue. In fact, he told his friend he didn't think he should play it and to stop bugging him to play it. Pretty impressive if you ask me!)

So, the decision to remove my son from public school and into a private one was pretty difficult, and came with a lot of doubts, fears, uncertainty, and apprehensions. (And many more accompanying words I can't think of right now.)  But, the decision has been made and he will be attending a private school this fall.

Overall I think this is going to be a very good move. Parts of me are nervous for change, though. There is no playground or recess. The school day is only 4 hours long. I will now be driving him to and picking him up from school every single day. (Yes I got lazy being able to watch him from our door to the school every day in the comfort of my own home.) I have to fix lunch for him every day now. (Which I loath and despise having to make lunch every day, but will get over eventually after I feel enough guilt for feeding him microwave burritos for the 15th time.) Extra activities like gym and music will have to be done outside of school. (But we've got it covered- piano lessons and swim team.)

So, why am I nervous? Because it's change. It's something neither my  husband or I have ever done. It's different. But sometimes different can be good, right? My son seems to be fine with it, so we should be too. I just hope I'm not setting him up for years of therapy in the future, you know? ("My parents ripped me from the only school I ever knew and sent me to...  oh.... I just can't say it..... p-p-p-private sssssschoool!!!!") 

So, two more weeks of summer at our house and then.... back to school! I feel like I'm going back to school too. Maybe I should go buy myself some new clothes to celebrate! Sounds like a good plan to me!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Uniform

School uniforms:  Like or Dislike

For me, it's a little of both. I like the ease of shopping for clothes with limited choices, but I still have to buy regular clothes for after school so it's like buying two wardrobes. Blech!

However, this year with my kiddo starting at a private school I was a little worried about the uniform policy. But I was happy to hear there is no "special" uniform (ie: ridiculously expensive ugly plaid pants with required wool jackets and ugly brown shoes). In fact, the uniform policy is pretty much the same as his last school with one exception. He can wear ANY color of shirt he wants rather than just three color choices, as long as it is a solid and has a collar!

So I have been shopping like a mad woman buying every color polo shirt under the sun. And the sad thing is my son will probably do his usual "shirt of the week" and wear just ONE shirt for the week, claiming it is perfectly clean and why make all that extra laundry. Ya, he does his own laundry, so you can see his ploy here.  (I finally had to make a 2 day shirt rule: if it's been worn for 2 days it goes in the laundry. And yes, that huge ketchup stain on the front means it has to be washed even if it's only been worn once!)

But yay for all the colors of the rainbow in choices now! I know he doesn't care as much as I do, but it makes me just a little bit happy about school clothes shopping this year.  And yes, I did get myself a new purse and some new granola-ish sandals. Hey, a mom needs a little something for herself for shopping so hard for her family, right? I thought so!


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Where have I been???

I've been:

Splashing at Bear Lake
Hiking Bridal Veil Falls
Strolling around Cascade Springs
Exploring the zoo... twice
Sliding at Seven Peaks
Screaming at Lagoon
Lounging in my back yard
Riding my bike
Playing with nieces and nephews
Watching movies with my hubby and son

And there are still 26 more days left to enjoy before the kid goes back to school!!!!

I plan to:
Feel the burn on several more hikes
Play on a vacation
Enjoy my sister's baby some more
Splash at the aquarium
Slide some more at Seven Peaks
Make at least ONE s'more
Swim at the pool
Explore the copper mines
Enjoy my backyard

And.... harvest a fresh tomato!!!!

So, you may not hear from me much until I'm satisfied I've accomplished all I set out to do this summer!

See ya soon!!!!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Following those promptings...

I am trying to better myself. I know, it's a big job.

I know I can't change everything wrong all at once, (there's a lot!) but I can start little by little.

I am starting by trying to heed those "little" promptings that come. You know, the little thoughts that tell you to do something and you don't understand why.

Well, yesterday I saw a neighbor outside. She was smoking and looked so sad and depressed. My first thougth was, oh, more drama. But then I had a stronger thought that I should go talk to her. Honestly, I didn't want to. She was smoking and I abhor second hand smoke. But there that thought was and I had promised to not ignore it when it came.

I went over to her and asked if she was ok. She proceeded to tell me her brother had just passed away unexpectedly and she was having a hard time dealing with it. I offered words of comfort and support, the best I could. I've never lost someone so close to me like that so how can I know what it's like? But I said what I felt right and left.
Today I found a very sweet card in my mailbox from her and it warmed my heart.

Again, today at church we were handed notecards with someone's name on it in the Relief Society. We were supposed to write down what we would tell that person if we were talking to them about how much Heavenly Father loves them. I got a lady I don't know really well, but I've been acquainted with her for 10 years and really admire her. I proceeded to write my thoughts down on the paper. I knew we were not intended to give the note to the person, it was just a personal exercise, but I felt prompted to give my note to her. I was nervous. I didn't want to. Why would I hand a random note to someone like that- "Here, I wrote this note in Relief Society for you".  But, I promised I would act on those promptings so I sought her out and handed her the note.

I don't know if she needed to hear what I had to say, but I hope it helped her feel good. It was good for me to look outside myself and try to serve others around me. I will make an extra effort this week to do more of this. It's gotta be good, right?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Coping skills

You know it's going to be a hum-dinger of a day when you absolutely MUST have chocolate and it's only 10:00 in the morning.

And the reason you need that chocolate is because your dishwasher won't turn on and wash the hugely full load of dishes inside.

So you decide to take all the dishes out and wash them by hand and realize you hear water running somewhere.

So you go look for the running water and find the water heater is leaking! So you find the water shut off valve and stop the constant running, all the while wondering how long it was doing that and how big your water bill is going to be.

So you walk back to the kitchen to do your dishes only to find that, of course, there is no more hot water because you shut it off!!!!

And you realize you are NOT going to make it to swimming lessons because the repair man is coming for the water heater, and you are NOT going to exercise today because you will be cleaning up water-heater mess, and you are NOT going to shower because there is no hot water anymore.

So you start foraging for chocolate.

Yep, it's going to be one of those days.

Friday, July 8, 2011

I'm a little bit country... not really...

I despise country music. And wranglers. And cowboy boots. And cowboy hats. And guys in cowboy boots and cowboy hats with wranglers on who listen to country music.

But, I do love the rodeo.

Go figure.

I do, however, close my eyes when the guys try to ride those bulls. I close my eyes when the clowns try to distract the bucking horse so the rider can run to safety.  I close my eyes when they are trying to rope the calves because I feel bad for those poor little calves. My eyes are pretty much closed most of the time, actually.

So why am I dragging my family along to see the Days of 47 Rodeo in a few weeks? Because it's good ol' fashioned family fun! And I told my hubby- who's eye-rolling was actually audible when I told him we were going, by gum- that he was going to love it, so mark my words. 

I guess we'll see if I'm right in a few weeks.

(please be right... please be right... please be right...)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

This post has not titled because it's pretty boring... for a post about being totally busy, that is.

The past few weeks have been a bit crazy around here. I can tell because my laundry basket is overflowing, which means I haven't had ANY time to do laundry. (Which also means I don't have any clean clothes to wear.)

My two cute nieces came to play for the weekend and we had a great time swimming and playing. I love them!!!!

Then my other cute niece came to stay for the whole week.... we had a great time going to Seven Peaks and the movies.  (By the way, I would rather stick toothpicks in my eye than see "Rango" ever again. Just so you know!)

Then we went to my mom's and my in-laws and to a baby blessing and at lots of yummy food.

Then we celebrated the 4th by going to Seven Peaks again, watching a movie, lighting fireworks and watching all the cool new legal aerial fireworks all the neighbors bought.

And today I worked for 3 hours in the yard weeding the gardens. Eck!

So, now I'm totally broke (financially as well as emotionally and physically) and now I need to take my kid to swimming lessons. I thought summer was time to be lazy and bored. Maybe that's just when you're a kid.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Fond Farewell...

Last night was the 3rd and final showing of the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy.  Yes, me, my husband/ LOTR fanatic, (although I don't know how he can really call himself that since has has YET to read the book! Hello... even I've read it!!!!  Ok... maybe I skimmed it... mostly.) my son, and even my 10 year old niece  all attended.  Here is what I learned:

1) There is something physically WRONG with those LOTR addicts. Something in their brains makes it impossible for them to navigate stairs. 3 nights of movies, same set of stairs every time, same people tripping up the SAME stairs... every single time!!!!  I even mentioned it to my husband afterword. "Isn't it strange how so many people had such a hard time on those stairs? IT's bizarre!" To which he replied: "Oh, I totally know what you mean. I tripped up those stairs several times, too!"  ( hmmm... shoulda known he'd  have trouble... LOTR fanatic!)

2) All the dads who thought it would be cool to bring their little 7 or 8 year old son to the movie were sooo excited at the beginning. And soooo tired of all the questions by the end! There were like 3 dads around me all saying "Sssshhhh..... just watch. I'll explain it to you later!"  Pretty funny, actually!

3) Not all LOTR geeks are guys.  Hello.... 5 girls showed up all dressed like Elf wanna-be's. And they looked ridiculous... until their boyfriends walked in wearing capes as well...(sparkley ones, even) and they looked more ridiculous!  And they ALL looked absolutely obsured as they tried to go up the stairs in those long flowing dresses and capes... tripping themselves and eachother!!!! That was my favorite part!  Hello People.... LOTR fans +  stairs + long costumes= disaster!  There should have been a sign posted at the entrance to the theater: CAUTION: THERE ARE STAIRS IN THIS AUDITORIUM. PLEASE, REFRAIN FROM WEARING YOUR CAPES.

4) 3 nights at the movies with my sweet little family is priceless!  I enjoyed "geeking out" with you all... and enjoyed watching the geeks even more!  Goodbye all you freaks!  May you have luck emerging from your grandmother's basement to find a worthy mate who will love your elfish fantasies as much as you do! And good luck to the 4 geeks who sat behind us in every movie who are apparently going to win the next video game tournament in Vegas... whatever it is.  May you find your way to a shower sometime before then!!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Chick Flicks and Sleep-Overs...

Yesterday I learned a few things:

1)  I CAN survive my son's first away-from-home friend sleepover

and

2) Men CAN enjoy a chick flick... if there's lots of fighting in it.

My son was invited to his first sleep-over last night. I said "yes" before I realized what I was saying. What?! My son can't sleep over at friends houses, he's still too little... or... maybe not. He is 10, I guess that's not too little... is it?  My husband had the same reaction. But we gritted our teeth together and let him do it. I kept telling myself, "He's a good kid, right? He makes good choices. He's not going to come home tatooed and with a nose ring.... right?"   Well... he's not home yet, so I can't say for sure, but I'm pretty confident he'll be ok.

Anyway, because of this surprise evening free from parental duties, my hubby and I got to go on a spontaneous date! He said I could choose the movie, and I actually chose a chick flick rather than the action movie I usually choose knowing my hubby will sigh and roll his eyes in a chick flick 9 times out of 10 and I'd rather enjoy the chick flick on my own.  But, I exercised my womanly rights and we went to see "Water for Elephants". It was excellent! And my hubby loved it as well. True, it did have lots of fighting, and that's venturing into the NON-chick-flick variety, but it had enough romance and drama to please me, too! It was a win-win movie!

So, Yay for manly chick-flicks and friend sleep-overs! (I think. Like I said, he's not home yet, so maybe not yay, but I'm crossing my fingers for Yay!)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Not a stand-up-in-the-kitchen-snarfing-it-down kind of dinner, but what you gonna do...

Tonight I made pasta for dinner. Hubby was going mountain biking in the canyons with a friend and I am paranoid my diabetic husband will pass out from low blood sugar, so I made pasta.  But not just any pasta. I made Penne pasta in a smoked gouda and white wine cream sauce with sundried tomatoes and artichoke hearts, with garlic and butter shrimp on the top with a crusty parmesan topping.

And we snarfed it down while standing up leaning against the kitchen counter. I laughed at the oddity of it all. It was a meal fit for a candlelight dinner with sparkling bubbly and chocolate dipped strawberries, but here we were eating it as though it was Kraft Mac and Cheese and the house was on fire.

Ahhh... real life. Gotta love it sometimes.  At least I sent my husband off with a belly full of deliciousness rather than yellow death. I'm sure it will make his ride that much better!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Lord of the Rings: Part Deux

Last night we went to the second "Lord of the Rings" movie.  (Yes, it has its own name, and I'm sure all you LOTR fanatics are just mortified that I don't know it off the top of my head, like not knowing the words to the national anthem or something. But I don't know it, ok?)  (Ok, I just looked at the DVD, it's "Two Towers". There, are you happy?)

Guess what I noticed? A lot more "families" there- men who'd dragged their wife and kids to see it.  I heard the guy in front of us whisper to his wife and 8 year old son: "Thanks for geeking out with me this time!"   Frankly, I think he came last week, saw the pathetic state of most of the men's situations around him and said, forget this, I've got a smokin hot wife at home and I need her here to reassure me I'm no loser like these punks! You know I'm right!

Oh, and I counted exactly how many people tripped going up and down the stairs last night: 18! And many were repeaters... they tripped going up, then back down, then back up again, like they had forgotten there were stairs there.  I couldn't believe it! Aaaaaannddd... the stairs have reflective tape on them so they are quite visible. (I went up and down them several times just to test it for myself- without a problem.) I know videogames are supposed to be good for hand/ eye coordination, but has there ever been a test measuring the effects of video gaming on foot/ stair coordination?  Maybe they're more used to going up "virtual" stairs rather than real stairs. Many looked as though they hadn't gone up a flight of stairs- successfully- in quite some time. 

So, next week is the last movie. Yes, we're going. And I think I'll bring a flashlight next time to help those poor souls manage the stairs better. Or perhaps I'll put a little Gollum doll at the top and say "Look to Gollum.... look to Gollum" and they'll make it just fine. :) 

And yes, we had a great time!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Lord of the Obsession

My hubby and I thought it would be fun to go see "Lord of the Rings" in the theater last night for their special return engagement. (Ok, my hubby thought it more than I did. And then my son caught wind of it and HE was ecstatic, so we had to go.)

I was designated to go reserve our seats beforehand because hubby and son were on a scout hike. So, like a dutiful wife I bought my ticket, got some popcorn and cold drink for the hikers when they returned because I knew they'd be hungry and thirsty, trudged up the steps to the theater and found 3 seats in a good spot before all the rest were quickly snatched up.

As I sat patiently waiting in the air-conditioned auditorium, I began to notice something. I did NOT fit in. I began to catch snippets of conversations around me and they all carried the same peculiar theme. They all managed to slip in terms like Middle Earth, Frodo, Hobbits, etc  into sentences seemingly unrelated to the movie in any way. I soon realized these people were not only obsessed with this movie, but couldn't carry on a conversation on ANY topic without referring in some way to the movie!

I chanced a look around the place. Sure enough, my suspicions were correct. I had deduced a few things about these people in listening to them and to see them it was clear:

1) most of the audience was single. (and very easy to see why)
2) most didn't own a razor, or didn't know how to find a decent hair dresser
3) ALL were LOTR experts. And every one had a very strong opinion about things in the movie that, had THEY been consulted, would have been much better. (as though it was perfectly natural for Joe Schmoe to be phoned up and asked what he thought should be done with the Gollum character.)
4) They all had something else in common (as though the previous 3 weren't enough), they all talked about gaming, and seemed to be equally obsessed with gaming as with LOTR. When a preview came on about a video game being made into a movie the audience collectively gasped and became actually giddy!
5) Not a one of them could manage stairs in the dark carrying a drink and popcorn without stumbling and spilling said items! I counted at least 8 people having difficulty with this! (probably because they were too afraid to look away from the screen perchance something might have changed  in the movie that hadn't been there the other 465 times they'd watched it before).

Oh, and the guy next too me seemed to think there was something totally wrong about a normal looking housewife with flipped hair, sparkly lip gloss and a freshly laundered blouse attending this particular event. Honestly, I began to think that myself!

However, when my hubby and son finally showed up about 20 minutes into the movie, and my son curled up next to me and began excitedly asking questions about certain things in the movie, and my hubby held my hand and whispered "this is so fun", I began to think that maybe I belonged there after all. Sandwiched between my two favorite men in the whole world- who just might fit in too easily with the rest of the crowd if it wasn't for my gentle, guiding hand. (And my clothes washing and hair cutting abilities!)

So, we are going to see the second movie next week. I think I'll bake cookies for all the schmoes around me as I save our seats. (it's scout night again). Maybe I can even offer some motherly guidance to those poor souls and help them maybe be able to bring an actual date to the next one in another week.  We'll set some goals.  But I know I'll love snuggling up to my guys again and enjoying what they enjoy.

And maybe I just might catch the fever. Maybe. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Nothing like fun with the cousins!

Last weekend I was able to take my little buddy up to my mom's house. All the cousins were there. (Yes, all 6 kids together... I was popping Advil like crazy!)  I went up to help my mom watch my sister's kids while she recovers from bringing her newest little one into the world. My mom is living in South Carolina until November, so she doesn't have internet or cable hooked up right now. We were wondering how the kids would entertain themselves if they couldn't play computer games or watch tv.

Guess what? They found a way:


My brother and his wife came over with their two girls and he built all the kids a tree house in the vacant lot behind my mom's house! They made a flag out of an old pillow case and I drew the skull and swords.



We had a big parade to post the flag:




And the kids spent the entire next two days playing in that tree house! I thank my brother and his wife for being our salvation!

Now what to do the rest of the summer?!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Love of gardening gene... I was absent that day.

I don't like gardening. That is to say, I do love picking fresh tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, herbs, zucchini, carrots... etc. And I love watching them grow and fill in the garden. I also love watching my flowers begin to bloom and fill the front of the house with color. However, I do NOT like to dig in the dirt. Nope. Not one bit.

I've heard many "green thumbs" say how much they love to get their hands in the soil and work it and feel it under their feet. I am not one of those people. I HATE getting dirt on my hands. I hate digging it out of my manicured fingernails. (Ok, manicured is a very loose term. I paint my nails about once a year, but I do keep them nicely smoothed and rounded. Ok, well I try to. Sometimes.)  And what I hate most is getting the garden ready to... well... garden.

Every spring when the weather is wet and rainy the grass grows and becomes thick and lush and green. It does that in my garden, too. And it's too wet to go out and dig it out while it's new, so by the time it's dry enough to go do some yard work the grass in my garden has grown a foot tall and is thick and firmly rooted.  The same goes for my flower garden. There is one patch that just won't stay free of grass. Grrrrr....

Today as I sat digging out the grass, digging deeply then pulling hard with both hands, dirt spraying all over my face, in my hair, down my shirt, into my shoes, on my legs. Well, I wasn't loving it. I thought about how little kids will sit in a dirt pile and pour dirt on their heads and laugh. Well you know what? I don't think it's funny! And I didn't do that as a child. I'm sure of it! (However, I did eat dirt, but that's an entirely different thing. I still sometimes smell it and remember how good it tasted. No, I haven't eaten it since I was at least 5!)

But, I just have to remind myself how good those home-grown tomatoes will taste, and how pretty those flowers will look, and how I won't have to duck my head in shame as I leave my house and see my grass over-grown garden and see my neighbor's perfectly hand-clipped and trimmed yard. At least I'll have some pretty veggies and flowers to show off. 

Incidentally, my son decided yesterday to go out while I was at the grocery store and weed some of the garden for me so I didn't have to do it all today. Isn't that the sweetest thing ever? And I didn't even ask him to do it! He said it was because he wanted to do what Jesus would have him do. That just melted my whole dirt-encrusted heart!!!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Ramblings about my little kiddo

Sometimes I wonder how I got put in charge of raising a boy such as mine. I look at him and see him grow each day. (Sometimes I think I should do something to stunt his growth so he can stay as little as possible for as long as possible!   I'm kidding, of course!)  I am impressed with the person he is.

When we have family scripture study, he doesn't say "Awe... Mom! I don't want to!" In fact, I don't think I have ever heard him say that during scripture study ... EVER! (I can't even count on two hands and feet the number of times I said that as a child to my own mom, though!)  And I love hearing him read from the scriptures. I am convinced that regular scripture reading by children increases their overall reading abilities immeasurably.  He sounds out the difficult words and nearly always gets them right.

I am impressed with the good choices he makes, too. If there is a show on television that doesn't look good, he will turn it off. Or if his friends want to watch something he knows isn't good he will tell them no, and that it isn't good for them! He is always mindful of those around him. He is so tender with his little cousins, too. Always making sure they are ok. If someone gets hurt he is there immediately trying to make them laugh. I just love that about him!

My son makes me want to be a better person. When I'm having a crabby "mom" day, he tenderly puts his arm around me and asks how he can make me happy. He always brings me flowers. I love that! He helps me make my bed. He does his chores without complaining (most of the time).

I want to be the best mom I can to him. I want to make sure I play with him as much as possible, and enjoy this time I have with him. Only 9 years until he goes on his mission. And those teenage years are fastly approaching where he will rather be with his friends than his mommy. But maybe if I stock the refridgerator with Sunny D and make homemade cookies, just maybe my house will be the cool house and I can at least listen to him play with his friends. 

He is coming to the end of his 4th grade year. We are making some big decisions about his future right now. I am nervous for change, but at the same time I see good things are possible.  He is a good kid. He will adapt quickly to whatever change comes his way. I just have one shot at this- helping one child turn out right. I hope I don't mess up!

I guess I'll just keep trying my best. He is a great motivation for that. And he loves my homemade cookies, so I'd better get baking!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

What I learned on my 4th grade field trip to This is the Place Heritage Park today...

Lesson #1:  If you think you're prepared for a busload of screaming 10 year olds... think again.

Lesson #2:  Promise your group candy at the end of the field trip if they behave perfectly. They will behave like angels! (turns out the candy store was closed, but they didn't know that until AFTER the field trip was over! hee hee)

Lesson #3:  repeat these words in your head about every 20 minutes: "It's only 4 hours... it's only 4 hours... it's only 4 hours". (No, you can't bring a hip flask to "help" you through this mantra, either.)

Lesson #4: some people's kids only seem like brats until you talk with them or if you are really nice to them. Other people's kids really are brats- through, and through. Those are the kids you make be in the teacher's group!

Lesson #5: IT's ok to be the "fun" mom on a field trip. IT really does make the day go better if you have fun along with the kids!

Lesson #6: Be prepared to sink into a catatonic state upon your arrival home. Be sure to have a bag of Doritos, a cold diet coke, and some chocolate within arms reach before collapsing on the bed. You won't be moving off your bed for about 2 hours. (Who knows how those teachers go a whole school year without totally losing it?!)

Lesson#7: Go on as many field trips with your kid as possible. You will be so glad you did, and more importantly you kid will. (when I walked into my son's room today all the kids perked up and said "Oooo... *bleep's* mom is coming! She comes on every field trip we have, and she's awesome!"   Ya... that made my whole day right there!

Monday, May 23, 2011

How did I get so lucky?

I am soooo proud of my little family, I just have to take this tiny moment to brag a bit.

Yesterday we presented the sacrament meeting program in church. I really wanted to teach my little guy how to give a "real" talk this time. He's 10 years old and I knew he could do it. So I sat him down one day with The Friend magazine and told him to pick a story he would base his talk off of. He had already read several of the stories, so he picked his favorite one- about being positive- and went from there. I then had him think of a few personal experiences that went along with the idea of positive thinking and how prayer helps us have a good attitude. He came up with two, and we included them in his talk. We then put in a few scriptures and a quote from a General Authority, and I typed it all up for him.  His talk ended up being almost 4 minutes, and he did such a good job! He spoke clearly, and even looked up from his paper at the audience like we had talked about!

I spoke as well, despite the fact that I had completely lost my voice two days before, and had to forego singing at a funeral of a dear friend the day before. However, I was able to speak yesterday, so I was very glad. I spoke about truly dedicating ourselves to the gospel rather than waiting around for some divine revelation. I felt good about how I did, overall.

My hubby and son then played "Families Can Be Together Forever" on the piano together, and they did a really good job! I was thrilled!

My hubby then spoke about making and keeping covenants with Heavenly Father. His talks are always so much more spiritual than mine, I think. I really admire him for his ability to write a deep talk.

Then, my hubby sang a solo. (I was shocked when he suggest he sing a solo since I couldn't sing a duet with him.)  The organ accompanied him and there was a beautiful violin obligatto part. It was so beautiful, I got the chills!

We came home from that high at church (and relief it was all over, of course~) and began getting ready for my family to come over for our massive May birthday party together. (Me, my sister, and my brother's birthdays are all within a week of eachother. It's like Christmas in May!)  IT was so fun to see everyone, and we managed to squeeze into our tiny house once again. I am always amazed that we can fit everyone- however tightly- into our home. It really helped to be able to bannish the kids to the basement to eat and play! Thank Heaven for that family room and second kitchen! What a sanity saver!!!

I didn't want the fun day to end last night, but I sure have good memories about it all now! I love my family!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Wicked fun!

Last week we took a quick little trip up to Boise to see "Wicked".

A few thoughts on this:

#1: I forgot how....how shall I put it.... boring, the landscape is in Idaho.
      Ok, it is beautiful, in a way. But there is just field after field after field after field after field. I remember making the drive through Idaho way back when I was going to Ricks college. The drive to Boise was no different.

#2: I LOVE road trips with my little family!
     My son is soooo amazingly good on road trips. He doesn't complain about how long it's taking, or being cramped or bored! Of course, it helps to have an endless stream of movies available at his fingertips, (how did the pioneers EVER do it without dvd's?) but he doesn't always watch movies. Sometimes I'll see him gazing out the windows and commenting on the beauty of the scenery.  Where did this kid come from? I don't know, but I"ll keep him!
     I always bring a good book along to read aloud to my hubby. It makes the time pass quickly and I just love it! Also, pre-sliced cheese and apples, crackers, beef jerky, banana chips, and M&M peanuts are a MUST!
(Eason in the hotel, dressed up for the show. Wet swimming suit hanging on doorknob!)
#3: Not all performances of "Wicked" are created equal.
      Saw it for the first time in London and it was SPECTACULAR!!!! Saw it again in Salt Lake and it was pretty dang good. Saw it in Boise and it was good. I'm afraid to see it again, actually... at this rate of success. No, it was really fun and my neices LOVED it. They were panting all over Fiyero, of course. And we sang the soundtrack all the way home- seriously, for 5 hours straight!

We stayed in a nice hotel, ate a delicious seafood dinner, (yes, seafood in Boise... I know, but it was good.) had a lot of fun at Wicked, and I think my husbands favorite part was the Peregrine Falcon habitat.

 We saw a sign for it on the freeway when we were just about to go home. Of course, Peregrine Falcons are his absolute favorite birds, so we had to go. It was really neat. And we found out the place also breeds the endangered Condors there! Pretty cool! (this isn't a peregrine, it's a Harrier something.)
(wingspan of a condor. Apparently they are very aggressive and will attack grown men at any given moment! Mommys, too!)

So, Yay road trip! Yay for "Wicked", yay for a VERY obedient kid and a generous husband, and me for packing all the food and reading for 5 hours straight each way.
           

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Pinewood Derby, Part Two: Divine Intervention!


Well. We he made his car and painted it (with a little help, of course), took it to the derby last night, placed it on the track, and.......

WON FIRST PLACE!!!!!!
We went with NO expectations. I mean NOOOOOO expectations. I nailed in the wheels about 10 minutes before we left for the race, and I don't know what I'm doing! But we went to have fun, right?
Well, after the VERRRRRRYYYYYY long winded track-owner guy gave a 40 minute (no exaggeration here) lecture on how much he paid for the track and how a kid dented one of the lanes and how we will all sign over our first-born children and their children's children if anyone even looks at his track wrong, and the longest description of how the race will work and how scoring will work and how parents need to stay out of his face and kids will forfeit their place on the board if they don't get their car on the right track... blah blah.. you get the idea. We finally began the race. And guess what....

His car finished first.... by a whole car length! I stopped gabbing with my neighbor when I saw, and I KNOW my mouth was open and my face showed the shock I was feeling.  Well, I thought, that's a nice way to start out the race. I'm glad he got to finish at least one race first, that will make him feel good.  Then, he raced again... and came in first! And then again, and again, and again, and again!!! At one point he came up to me and whispered with this dumbfounded look on his face "Mom, did you see that? I can't believe I'm coming in first! Do you think I might win?" Only 1 race did he not come in first, and that was the dented lane that was slowing down all the cars when they'd race in it, and he came in 2nd! He made the final four, obviously, and.... finished 1st in every one!

I think we were all in shock!  People kept coming up to us after and asking to see the car, wanting to know what "tricks" we'd used to make such a fast car. Honestly, we have no clue! To bring it up to weight we drilled three penny-sized holes in the bottom (my idea) to put pennies in. Apparently the planets were alligned just right because we did something right!

Actually, I really think we owe it all to our dear friend Sid. He passed away last week, and he sooo wanted to help our little guy with his car this year. We had arranged to have them work together but his health became so poor he just couldn't do it. I think he was behind the car the whole night pushing it on- what else could it have been? Thank you, Sid. You made a little 10 year old VERY happy last night!

We went out to his favorite restaurant to celebrate after. Training Table burgers make everything better, right?

It is just great to see the "underdog" win once in a while, ya know? We had no chance in *bleep* and we did it! I am so proud of my little guy!
Ladies and Gentlemen...

I give you..... "THE WRATH BRINGER"    (yep. that's the name. And he sure "brought it"!)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Oh Yeah... it's Pinewood Derby Time, Baby!

Question #1:  Why do people get so "into" this whole pinewood derby thing?

Last year there were something like 40 races total to determine the winner. 40? Really? When I saw that number up on the whiteboard at the gym I thought, this can't be right. We won't really have to watch 40 races right? Wrong. We had to watch more like 50 because all the leaders and parents and on-lookers who had brought their own cars had to have a chance to race them after the cub scouts had finished! Really.

Question #2: Who is this really for?

Last year the parents spent more time rounding up their cub scouts- who were having more fun flipping coins against the wall at the other end of the gym- to come race their car again. "You wanna see if you win, don't you?"  Well, isn't it obvious they don't?

And, as I said before, the parents line up at the end to get a chance to race their own creations. They looked more excited than their children who, after having been drug up to the front for 40 different races,  couldn't care less about their parent's cars and just wanted to go home and eat something other than cheap hotdogs and stale chips. I think it's obvious who this is really for.

Question #3: What parent really lets their kid actually do his entire car himself without "aiding" even a little tiny bit?

I didn't think so.

But, all that aside, we are participating again this year. However, my son seems more interested this time than last time. We'll see though when we actually get there and there are only 32 more races to go before the end where the parents get their 10 races each, and the kids are scooting their heads along the gym floor to see who's hair can stand out the furthest with static electricity and whining occasionally about wanting to go home because they're board.  And we'll be sure to file down those wheel axles and powder those thingamajigs and align the whatchacallits.  Because that's just what you have to do to win, apparently. My poor kid, though. He has two very... shall we say... NON-competetive parents. I couldn't care less about the race, I just want his car to look cool. (And pink, but I couldn't persuade my very masculine son to paint his car pink with white clouds like I wanted. Darn it.)

So, we get to go bask in cub-scout heaven tonight. Wish us luck. And lots of migraine medicine. I'm sure I'll need it.  Yay Pinewood Derby!!!!



Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Royal Addiction...

Ok. It could be that I am becoming just a little bit out of control obsessed with the Royal Wedding. I just pre-ordered my own copy of all the wedding music performed during the ceremony. Well? It was beautiful! And having been at Westminster Abbey, I can close my eyes and almost feel like I am there again.

And I will probably watch the whole ceremony again this afternoon as a reward for getting myself to exercise today.

And I will probaby pull up the pictures of the royal wedding cake again. They are gorgeous!

Yes, it is an addiction. But, if obsession with the royal wedding is wrong, I don't wanna be right!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Royal Bliss!

I am a sucker for weddings. I can't deny it. And I cry at every single one! (Except my own. For some reason I was in too much bliss on my own wedding day to get weepy.)

So, you can imagine what a basket case I've been this weekend with the Royal Wedding of William and Kate! My husband and son, however, do not share my sappy nature when it comes to the Royal Wedding. They've spend much of the weekend rolling their eyes. And my son has been ranting every time he sees me watching footage of the wedding, or on the lives of the bride and groom- "Why?! Why do women love this royal wedding stuff so much? Who cares????"   Yes, he is a typical male.

I even got to attend a real wedding ceremony at the beautiful Red Butte Gardens on Saturday, and it was so beautiful. The ceremony took place in their Orangery, a glass enclosed room with the backdrop of thousands of yellow daffodils coated with a thin blanket of fresh snow. And the ceremony itself took place while large, white snowflakes fell quietly in the background.  The food was decadent, the music fantastic, and I held my eternal companion's hand the whole time. And yes, I cried! (and I didn't even know the couple!)

Yes, some may think the Royal Wedding is ridiculous, but, I love it, nonetheless. So I am sitting here on my bed, folding laundry, watching the ceremony- again- and weeping! And I love it!!!!! "Marriage is happy news" as is said in my favorite movie- "Moonstruck". 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

One Step Closer...

I am so tired of people asking how my kitchen is coming and my response being: "Great. It's almost done. I only have the ceiling left to paint, and the edging to do...)

So, instead of making dinner tonight I did something else.

I painted the ceiling.

Except for the edges... which I can't reach... because I'm short... and afraid of heights...on that big, tall ladder...

So now my answer will be "Great, it's almost done! I just have the edging to to!" 

One step closer!!!

Friday, April 15, 2011

I wanna be the hot grandma!

Yesterday I saw a cute little old lady walking her two dogs. She must have been in her 80's. She was just taking cute little tiny steps as her two little black poodles scampered next to her. She had on cute little work-out pants. She had her cute little sun visor shading her eyes. She had on her toning shoes.

Wait... what? Toning shoes?

I began thinking of a saggy, wrinkly 80-something butt. Would toning shoes really help? And when I'm 80-ish will I really care if my caboose is toned?  I don't know... maybe.  But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that this lady still takes good care of herself, which probably makes her happier. And look great from behind!

So, maybe I will care after all when I'm that old. I came home, strapped on my toning shoes, and set that mental picture in my mind of how I want to look, as I'm working out.  (You know, that mental picture you have of skinny legs, no jiggling... the- workout- will- be- all- worth- it- because- it'll -make- me- look- like- that  mental picture?) Except, my mental picture changed. I am now speed-walking 2 miles a day to look like that cute little old lady with the great butt!

Ok, maybe not. But it's not a bad thing to shoot for after all. It's like the really big picture- the one WAAAAY down the road. And it's good to have the future in mind, right. I wanna be the HOT grandma!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Progress is progress!

Remember when my kitchen looked like this:


And then this: (giant gaping hole in the side of our house in the cold of October!)
And this mess? I sure remember it!!!!


Well, it's almost done! We now have this in place of the giant gaping hole: (sorry, the light is bad.)

And this where all that construction stuff was!

Now all that's left is to paint the ceiling, do a few little "finishes" and fix a small part of the floor that refuses to cooperate! Yay!!! (I love my pretty smooth glass tile backsplash. I run my hands across it several times a day! My husband is getting jealous, I think.) 

(Oh, and if you're interested, Income Property is our new favorite show around our house. It is about turning people's homes into income properties! We LOVE the before and afters! You can watch it here.)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Who do you think you are?

This show makes me cry every single time I watch it. (Which is usually when I'm trying to work out on the treadmill, which is impossible when you are crying, at which point I usually collapse onto the couch with a big wad of tissues unil I've cried it all out, then finally end up turning off the episode until I am through with my workout so I can cry and not risk breaking my neck falling off the treadmill!)

It reminds me how strong the bond of family is, and how far back it reaches throughout our family tree. The amazing people we come from, and how they are all up in Heaven aware of us and rooting for us, and cheering us on, and telling us we can do it because they did it, and we are part of them! (Now see, I'm getting choked up again!)

Watch it today if you haven't seen it before. http://www.nbc.com/who-do-you-think-you-are/

My hubby and I are going to be taking a family history class in church together. We have been meaning to do it for a very long time, but I will admit it is very daunting to me. I took a genealogy class in college (9:00 AM, freshman year... not a good combination.) and didn't do so great. (I think I pulled a C... and not without a LOT of begging.) So I am quite nervous about it, but hopefully I will catch the "fire" and feel inspired. Although I don't know if I'm quite ready for visitants from the other side of the veil to prod me along in my family research. I think I might keel over with a heart attack if that were to happen. I told my husband if anyone were to visit him to please tell them he does his entertaining in the livingroom so as not to freak out his wife. 

Anyway, this show "Who do you think you are" is certainly sparking that fire within! (This particular episode had me just sobbing!)