Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas craziness

I love Christmas. I love the smell of the Christmas tree permeating my house for a whole month. I love the lights and all the decorations. I don't love the scrambling around to buy presents. I am always plagued with the worry I didn't get enough presents for somebody. I started to reflect on the one thing which makes my Christmas miserable (besides dealing with nasty family members) and decided I was not going to worry about this year. I have to be honest though, I worry about it a little. :P

As I've watched my kids in Christmases past tear apart their presents like a wild herd of hyenas taking down a gazelle, I realized they don't appreciate the gifts as much as they really should. This year I've decided to tone it down. We bought the boys a couple of high ticket items and clothes - that's it. The high ticket items are very useful and meant for all 3 of them. I started to doubt my decision but then came across this article from MSN. The article suggests there are 7 things you can buy with money that make you happy. I was skeptical when I read the article but was pleasantly surprised at the end. I think you will enjoy it. Here is the link:

http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Investing/HomeMortgageSavings/7-smart-ways-to-buy-happiness.aspx?GT1=33011

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Zion National Park at Thanksgiving


We went to Zion National Park this year for Thanksgiving. All I can say is there is no way anyone can be an atheist once they've seen this spectacular place. Only God could create something so beautiful!

We visit Zion every year, usually for Veteran's Day as my grandfather's ashes are scattered there (on the Overlook). However, this year we decided to say goodbye to slaving over the hot oven for Thanksgiving and instead went to Zion. I am so glad we did! We stayed 5 days. It was a great vacation. Two of the days it rained. At first I was upset because we couldn't hike but we spent the time shopping and lounging around in the hotel.

Taking this vacation made me realize how important it is to take it easy. There were no phone calls to make, no emails to send, no errands to run, just enjoying God's beauty. While it is important to serve, we also need to make sure we are serving ourselves and our families first. As a very good friend of mine said, "sometimes we get too caught up in responsibilities that we forget our spiritual responsibilities." So true! Whether it's errands, kid activities, Church responsibilites or even Christmas shopping, I believe we need to focus more on simplicity and spirituality in our lives. We don't have to kill ourselves to prove we're great people, parents, or members. Most of the time it is the small simple things that bring the greatest joys to our lives. I know I need to remember this.

I have included a slide show of Zion. I must warn you, there are many pictures so speed bloggers beware! Also, if you read this post PLEASE COMMENT as I have no idea if more than 3 people read this lol.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Mom Song

My mother-in-law emailed this to me. So true!

What Thanksgiving Food Are You?




You Are Mashed Potatoes



Ordinary, comforting, and more than a little predictable

You're the glue that holds everyone together.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Shiny Food and 52 blessings







We have a wonderful food storage group in our ward. We are so lucky to have a knowledgable woman as the head of this group. Thanks to her, we were able to get both the poucher and the canner from the Bishop's Storehouse so that none of us had to drive down to La Jolla. In the last several months we've participated in canning/pouching nights. In fact, I spent 3 hours tonight canning the last of my food storage (I still need to freeze more meat). I am so grateful for the advice of our Prophet. I feel much better knowing I have food to feed my family should the worst happen. This is my blessing for the week. I probably have about 3 months worth of food stored around the house. I took some pictures of my food storage. Like I said, this is only 3 months worth but it sure looks like more! I just need to figure out where to put the rest of it. :P












Monday, November 10, 2008

Yiddish

After using some interesting language in front of a hardened marine, I commented, "I swear like a truck driver." He replied, "you don't swear like a truck driver, you cuss like a pirate." Since joining the Church, I have toned down my foul language but tend to use it frequently in the privacy of my own company or around my husband. As I try to be sensitive to those of a more gentle disposition and less wordly language, I've found myself coming up with alternatives to my previous foul language.

Some of my favorites are "schmuck" and "putz." Both are Yiddish terms and are actually pretty foul but nobody seems to know what they truly mean. In my opinion, flippin' or it's derivations is just as bad as the original term. However, because I don't want to offend anyone, I choose the deriviation. Due to the lack of understanding of the Yiddish language, if you can call it that, I can still get away with a few "bad" words here and there. I don't think I can count Yiddish as one of my 52 to blessings but it is certainly up there as a means to wean me from my pirate-like nature.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Jon and Kate plus 8

I was just wondering if anybody else was completely annoyed by the show "Jon and Kate plus 8." When I first started watching the show, I thought it was funny and sympathized with all their kid mishaps. Now, the show totally annoys me. Why, you ask? The whole hardship of raising 2 sets of multiples (8 kids) seems like a crock of *&^% to me. At first, I could tell they were struggling, trying to keep it together but now it seems that since their show has aired for a while they are getting all sorts of kickbacks. The latest episode, shows all of them flying to Hawaii while making multiple trips to the bathroom with the kids, which looked miserable. One problem - they were flying first class. What's up with that? Moreover, they are going to Hawaii to renew their vows, which is lovely, but who is paying for this? Also, did anybody see the episode in which Jon was given free hair plugs? Has anybody noticed that if you look hard enough there is always an extra helper with them? She's rarely filmed, but she's there. Oh, they are also buying a house on like 5 acres. He's the only one who works and I'm pretty sure he doesn't make enough for all this (I could be wrong).

Here's my problem: Okay, so they had twins, took more fertility drugs and had 6 more. Life is tough and they're dealing with it. They get on a TV show so they can "inform" people what its like having this many kids and how hard it is. After a few seasons suddenly everything is "paid for" by other people because they are fans of the show. However, Kate keeps bitching at Jon and Jon stands around like a big slug. Huh? I don't get this. I don't begrudge them the help but come on. They decided to have all these children and received a windfall and they are still complaining? What really irks me is what happened to the genuineness of the show? Wasn't the purpose to show how tough it is? If they're receiving all this help then doesn't that kind of defeat the whole point? I don't know, I guess its supposed to be reality TV and it doesn't seem very real to me. I mean, why don't the TV execs step into any one of our churches and start giving hand-outs? At least we could watch a show in which the parents were pleasant.

Am I nasty wench or does anybody else feel annoyed too?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween

We went to the church for Trunk or Treat this year after the boys realized they could go more than once around the parking lot for candy. All the little kids and adults were dressed to the nines. It was so much fun. Unfortunately, we didn't eat dinner before going so we were starving by the time it was over. Sorry we missed the scones and hot chocolate but we HAD to get something to eat besides sweet gooey stuff. I am so thankful to everybody for all their hard work in order to prepare the carnival and trunk or treat. This is my weekly blessing.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Harry Potter Party

We went to the annual Harry Potter Halloween Party this year. Last year we missed because of the fires. So, this year we were determined to go. Conor and Cade dressed up as knights. While their costumes weren't traditional Harry Potter, they did count as part of the chess pieces in the first movie (I think). Henry was a perfect Draco Malfoy. We had a little trouble keeping his hair slicked back. it looked pretty good the beginning of the night but by the end, it was stick straight up. He stilled looked totally cute.

Victor was Professor Snape and I was Professor Trelawney. I won the dress up contest! The only reason I won was because my kids were totally screaming for me lol. Anyway, I got an awesome Sirius Black wand for winning.

The party was a blast. The kids got to make their own potions (drinks) and the first Harry Potter movie was playing on the side of the house. Hmmmm...good idea. Maybe I should have an outdoor movie night next summer. I digress. Thanks Dusty and Jenny for the super fun party!

The Pumpkin Patch

Just like everybody else, we went to Bates Nut Farm. It was so fun! It was a little hot and pretty crowded. I look forward to the pumpkin ice cream every year. So good! We had a blast and will carve pumpkins tomorrow! Also, as is my tradition I got a couple new Christmas ornaments. I love the holidays!!!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Naps...curse or blessing?

Ok, ok, I know I said naps were a blessing in my "52 Blessings" but I'm starting to wonder if they really are. Lately, I have been taking naps with Henry since he's been super fussy about going down for a nap in his own bed- bad habit, I know. Anyway, I lie down with him in my bed thinking I will just wait until he starts to get tired or falls asleep. Not a good idea. I fall asleep before he does! Then, I'm up all night because I took a stinkin' nap for a couple of hours. I tried to drink a bunch of diet pepsi today to stay awake but to no avail.

The positive outcome of all of this is my son loves to take naps with me so if I'm tired I can get some rest. I still sleep with my Pooh bear, pathetic I know, and so does Henry. So cute! I love how Henry is so similar to how I was as a little kid. Lately, my husband has enjoyed taking pictures of us sleeping. I don't know if he thinks it is cute or sad. Anyway, here are the pictures. Oh, and I haven't gained 300lbs like it appears in the photo that makes me look like I have 5 chins.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Martha Stewart

I was looking for new songs for my ringback tones and came across these Martha Stewart bloopers. I laughed so hard I was in tears. I hope you like it too. Btw, the weird looking Fabio wannabe on the horse is Conan O'Brien.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Labor Day



Alright, alright, I will really try to get better at blogging. It seems like I don't have enough time to hear myself think let alone journal. But, if Lauri, Ginger's daughter can do it, so can I.

We went to a friend's house on Labor Day for fun and activities. We had so much fun. Henry drank the syrup straight from the snow cone machine instead of adding ice. I figured, oh well, he'll run all that sugar out eventually. There is a really funny picture (above) with Henry and his snow cones. Tonya served the volleyball right into Henry's snow cone. I don't think he knew what happened so he just turned around and starting yelling at the kids closest to him.

Conor and Cade had a blast in the jumper and running around playing war games with the other kids. The party was right around Cade's birthday so we decided to bring a cake just for him. We didn't even have to do anything except put the cake in the freezer. This birthday was a snap.

Our hosts have a BEAUTIFUL backyard that Victor and I have decided to use as a model for our new backyard after the remodel. We had such a blast visiting and eating all day long! Our hosts were so gracious and calm the whole time. I was impressed!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Balboa Park

Ok, I'm not doing too well with this posting stuff. I completely intended to keep this up but after some frustrating bouts with downloading pictures from my phone, I sort of forgot about blogging. Anyway, I finally changed my email- excite is horrible btw- so I could actually get the pictures I emailed to myself. For some reason, excite eats them.

We went to Balboa Park to see the new mummy movie they had out- not as cool as I thought and a little more graphic than expected. The boys loved it. Gross=entertaining for boys. We had a picnic out on the lawn in front of the fountain which was awesome until bees started "attacking" Conor. I say attacking loosely because I've never seen someone so dramatic about bees flying around. It's not like he's allergic. We finally had to make him eat under another tree because he looked like some kind of injured rodeo clown. *Sigh* Regardless of Conor's epileptic like display, we had a great time. I love the kid's room with all the different activity areas. I'm including a slide show. I hope you enjoy Victor's Blues Brothers look.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Anybody remember this one?


I laughed so hard when I first read this. Enjoy!
[Arkansas Democrat Gazette], July 25, 1996

Two local men were seriously injured when their pick-up truck left the road and struck a tree near Cotton Patch on State Highway 38. County deputy Dovey Snyder reported the accident shortly after midnight Monday. Thurston Poole, 33 and Billy Ray Wallis, 38, are listed in serious condition at Baptist Medical Center. The accident occurred as the two men were returning to Des Arc after a frog gigging trip. On an overcast Sunday night, Poole's pick-up truck headlights malfunctioned. The two men concluded that the headlight fuse on the truck had burned out. Since a replacement fuse was not available, Wallis noticed that the .22 caliber bullet from his pistol fit perfectly into the fuse box next to the steering column. He inserted the bullet, the headlights again began to operate properly and the two men proceeded on east-bound toward the White River bridge. After traveling twenty miles and just before crossing the river, the bullet overheated, discharged and struck Poole in the right testicle. The vehicle swerved to the right exiting the pavement and striking a tree.

Poole suffered only minor cuts and abrasions from the accident, but will require surgery to repair the other wound. Wallis sustained a broken clavicle and was treated and released. "Thank God we weren't on that bridge when Thurston shot his nuts off or we might both be dead," stated Wallis. "I've been a trooper for ten years in this part of the world, but this is a first for me. I can't believe that those two would admit how this accident happened", said Snyder. Upon being notified of the wreck, Poole's wife asked how many frogs the boys had caught and did anyone manage to get them out of the truck.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Beach Days

We have beach days in which we go to the beach, just for a few hours and have fun. I love to watch my kids run around in the waves, make sand castles, scream, holler and act like total boys. Conor and Henry have developed this tandem boogie boarding thing in which Henry gets on the front of the board and Conor is on the back. They are so cute! I love to watch my boys playing together like this. It makes all those hard days totally worthwhile. Conor is on the far left with Henry in the front and Cade is on the yellow boogie board. P.S. Don't mind my finger covering part of the shot. I'm new at all this! Plus, all these "videos" were taken with my phone. :P

video

Here's another one of the boys playing in the sand. Undoubtedly building some kind of impenetrable fortress.

video

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

What did you do all day?




I received this email from my mother-in-law and just loved it. I know you will too!

A man came home from work and found his three children outside, still in their pajamas, playing in the mud, with empty food boxes and wrappers strewn all around the front yard. The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house and there was no sign of the dog. Proceeding into the entry, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, and the throw rug was wadded against one wall. In the front room the TV was loudly blaring a Cartoon channel, and the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing. In the kitchen, dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled on the counter, the fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door. He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she might be ill, or that something serious had happened. He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door. As he peered inside he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and walls. As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel. She looked up at him, smiled, and asked how his day went. He looked at her bewildered and asked, "What happened here today?" She again smiled and answered, "You know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what in the world I do all day?" "Yes," was his incredulous reply. She answered, "Well, today I didn't do it."

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Swings at Home Depot


I am planning on having about 20 women over to my house for an RS Girl group. I am totally excited about the party but why does everything have to go wrong just before you need to do something?

We have a cute little pug puppy who has been limping around for the past couple of days. Probably some injury due to the fact that she likes to wrestle with our 80 lb black lab mix. I decided to make an appointment with the vet today. However, I still needed to go to the grocery store to buy all the goodies for the party. I packed up all the kids and headed for two grocery stores- one has great produce and the other has good stock stuff. Anyway, we were rushing around in the grocery stores so we could make it to the vet in time. If I had been by myself, I could have gotten this done in 20 minutes flat. In order to help me, I thought I'd let the older boys push the cart with their little brother in it; they could follow me and I could just grab and run. It turned out that Cade thought it was some kind of racing game and decided to run full speed in the grocery store with his brother in the cart. While Henry was bellowing war cries in the cart, Conor was bitching at both of them, hoping to both make himself look mature and possibly get Cade in trouble (this is a recurring theme in our house). I asked Cade to stop. Not 1 minute later- same thing. I would just like to add here that parents can't speak normally to children. Whatever you say is only effective if you say it 20 times. Anyway, after repeating myself numerous times, we got to the check out counter where some woman gave me a dirty look and rolled her eyes.

Second grocery store: same thing, wash, rinse and repeat. Except, this time Conor, the babbler, is trying to have some kind of conversation with me. I tried to tune him out but its just not possible. Meanwhile, Cade was giving me the "stink eye" because I wouldn't let him push the cart anymore and Henry was whining about not being able to participate in the Von's 500 Race Spectacular. Fried and frazzled, we get home, unload the perishable stuff, get the dog, head to the vet.

When we got to the vet's office the 10lb pug decides to play "quien es muy macho" with any dog who gets close to her. I'd never heard her growl before but it was pretty pathetic. In order to keep the dog calm during the vet visit I decided to leave the boys in the waiting room. They had a great play room with a TV and chalk boards. Sounds good? That should placate them for 15 min. right? I don't think so. I was discussing different options with the vet, one of which included $700 worth of x-rays and multiple diagnostic readings, when I heard screeching and then crying from the waiting room. I say calmly to the vet, "those are mine, give me a minute." The vet laughed- you know, that fake laugh that really says "I'm glad I'm not you." Anyway, I went out to the waiting room to find my 10 year old's head stuck in some kind of box in the play room. I have no idea if it was a left over box from some surgical supplies or what. At this point I'm asking myself if this normal behavior for a 10 year old. The 3 year old is crying because the 12 year old wouldn't let him stand on the chair- go figure. I put the 10 year old in time out, yes folks, time out in the vet's office and go back to the patient room to see how much worse my day can get.

Thank the gawds for naps! We got home and ate a quick lunch. My sweet little 3 year old snuggles up to me and says, "go mommy bed." How cute! I head to the bedroom with Henry and threaten the boys with pain of death should they wake us up. Luckily they were quiet. However, the first thing which occurs the minute we get up is a nice little spat between the 3 year old and the 12 year old in which the oldest tells me his little brother is picking on him. Huh?!? They got into some kind of verbal argument in which I could hear the grating sound of Conor lecturing and Henry's non-discernible babble in retort- remember he's only 3. How do you argue with a 3 year old? At this point, I'm about ready to kill Conor with my bare hands and wondering if I will actually enjoy it. Instead, I decide to go to the Home Depot.

The main light in the kitchen blew out so we replaced it with this really great retro light. Unfortunately, we had to go through the attic to re-wire everything while taking a good chunk of the ceiling out. After we repaired the ceiling, we just needed some paint to match the existing ceiling. Hence, the trip to THE Home Depot. An aside: I don't think you can really refer to Home Depot without the "the" in there. Something about having an awful experience there 99% of the time warrants the infamy. Anyway, I went to the paint counter in which some new guy was there that can't match the paint color. Why? Because he doesn't know what he's doing. He actually said this to me. He didn't know how to put less yellow in the paint color and suggested I wait 30 minutes for the "real" paint guy to get back. Yeah, like I have 30 minutes to kill with 3 hyperactive kids. I smiled and decided I would try to make the best of the situation.

The minute we walked off, all 3 boys starting fighting about who would get to push the cart with Henry in it. I call my husband, begging for mercy. Please come meet me at the Home Depot, I beg. He's on his way. In the meantime, Henry wants to stand up in the cart because sitting down or even sitting in the intended part of the cart is just too boring. So I let him walk with me- so stupid. He started running every direction like some kind of sniper target with the two older boys running after him screeching and hollering at eachother. As I watch this display, I am keenly reminded of the velociraptors in Jurassic Park. I'm done at this point. I notice some swings for sale in the garden section. I sat down on one and started to swing. This is pretty good. Suddenly, I don't really care what they're doing. I'm also wondering if I'm at the begining of some nervous breakdown. My husband finally shows up, looks at me with a questioning, half scared look. The minute he got there the boys were angels. What's up with that? At this point, I don't care. The real paint guy has showed up and technically my shift is over.

Anybody else know this kind of day?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A picture speaks a thousand words


Ok, so, in my "about me" section I talked about my boys. Take a look at what I'm dealing with lol. Captain Henry and his deck swabbers! This pic was taken at the Renaissance Fair.


Blogging?

Ok, so I read Ginger's blog after she wrote the url on the back of the church bulletin. :P Interested, I began to surf the different blogs linked on her "favorites." I came across the blogs of most of her family. I am officially a "lurker!" While reading her daughters's blogs, I laughed so hard I nearly pee'd my pants. I wish I could have been one of her eight children. Anyway, I think I read all of them and was disappointed there wasn't more. What a great idea blogging is! I can't wait to share my experiences with my family. It is so great when you realize you aren't alone in your interesting trials as a stay at home mom. I loved reading all of your blogs. =)

Continuation...

It is now 3:45am and I have finally figured out how to make all the cute little icons appear. Hopefully my kids will leave me alone so I can take a nap tomorrow.