Thursday, October 30, 2008

Letters by Emme

Dear Dad,
I (heart) u so much!! I love your curly hair.
He smells like pizza
He keeps me in a house
He is my dad
He is my wonderful dad!!

Dear Cannon,
I (heart) u so much! Stay smart, hope
you always get "A's"
ABC, 123
He is smart
Yesiree, I (heart) u.
U (heart) me for all eternity.

Dear Claire,
You are such a
great sister. I love u so
much!! Thank you for being
such a great sister.
She is like silver
or is it gold
she is my sister
my wonderful sister.

Dear Chance,
I (heart) U!! I like your
brown hair.
He smells like candy
He is as handsome as Tony Hawk
He is my brother
my wonderful brother.

Dear Mom,
You are the best mom
ever. You are a
great cook. I (heart) u so
much!! You are very
beautiful. I (heart) your black
Her hair is like candy
she smells like perfume
She is very handy
She is my mom
My wonderful mom.
I (heart) U!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


We celebrate Halloween early around here. Mainly because there was a neighborhood FHE party and it was just another excuse for the kids to dress up and eat candy.
Because they won't get enough on Friday.

Is she not the most cutest Snow White ever?
I firmly believe I do not ever recall a more adorable version of this princess. Even with blackened feet from the rented bouncer. (You should have seen the bath water.) She fully enjoyed herself and ate as many pieces of popcorn off the ground as she could, and drank from as many people's cups as she found. What are the odds that she won't contract some hideous disease?

Can I just tell you that I love the Disney Store? I went there last Saturday looking for a ninja. The salesman showed me this Power Ranger. I told him I really needed a ninja. He said it was 75% off. I bought it.
We've declared it a red ninja, just ask him. Complete with gloves, boot covers, and a helmet. For like $10. Fantastic.

She decided a month ago that she wanted to be a black cat. I was a little hesitant (fearful of a catwoman type outfit), but she insisted all she needed was black pants, a black shirt, cat ears and a tail. I dolled it up a little with some fuzzy yarn around her wrists and ankles. But she absolutely loved it and drew on the whiskers and nose herself. I love costumes that are regular clothes.

He originally wanted to be Wall-e. You know, a robot with tank treads and controls inside. I talked him out of that. Then he wanted to be a spy with night vision goggles that cost $80. I said no to that one. He got depressed and said he didn't want to be anything. My dearest talked him into a secret service agent. I love this costume. It's a pair of sunglasses and one of my ear buds and a fake real-looking gun. I actually bought the shirt and pants too, but he totally plans on wearing them after. And do you see that little piece of red ribbon? That's his holster, made by him. He looked for black ribbon but couldn't find any. I love how clever he is.
I love costumes that are regular clothes.
I love them.

Friday, October 24, 2008


I was inside my house busy the other day when my baby came up to me. "Bubbles," she said, pointing to the gigantic container of soapy water sitting atop the fridge.
My first instinct was to tell her, "Not now, see mommy is really busy doing important stuff like cleaning the house and making dinner."
But, she can't understand that. All she can see is the bubbles and me shaking my head, saying no.
So I threw caution to the wind and took that large jug of bubbles out to the front yard and started blowing for her. She screamed for joy, eyes sparkling at the sight of bubbles everywhere. She would chase them across the grass as they skittered and floated, until they reached her little fingers and Pop! While there were copious amounts of bubbles in the air immediately following a good puff of air, the bubbles would soon scatter and Pop! Pop! Pop! The offending culprit was usually a blade of grass, or a leaf on a tree, or even a strong gust of wind. Sometimes she would actually touch one and laugh as it Popped! on her finger.
She was having such a grand time.
I got caught up in her excitement and wanted to really impress her. I tried my best to blow as many bubbles as I could, so there could be hundreds floating in the air around her. As I did I noticed something. The quicker I exhaled, the less bubbles came out of the wand. But if I slowed down and took a long steady breath out, so many bubbles would emerge that I could usually take another breath without having to reload.
I thought about this for a little while. Sometimes I get so caught up in trying to be better, a better mother, wife, friend, sister, daughter, neighbor, Primary pres. I want to impress others, make them like me, it's the people pleaser in me. But as I try too hard to do too much, like the bubbles, I usually end up feeling empty and realize I haven't really accomplished anything.
I need to remember to take a long, even breath when it comes to my life. I can't be everything to everyone all the time.
And I need to remember that sometimes, it's okay to blow bubbles in the front yard with my baby.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Two - It's where it's at

I let all two year olds eat cookies for breakfast on their birthday. In fact, on their birthday, all two year olds get to eat cookies all day long. Soda pop too. That was pretty much her day, cookies and soda, soda and cookies. I mean, it's not her fault her brother has the flu and we can't go anywhere or do anything. To compensate for this unjustness, I allow an all-you-can-eat cookie and soda buffet. It is her birthday.

Also on her birthday, all two year olds do not have to comb their hair. No, two year olds get to spend their day in their jammies, read books, eat cookies, drink soda, take naps, and cuddle up to their mommies, without having to undergo the ritual of untangling the disaster that is her hair. Which, lets face it, will just tangle itself back up a minute after I detangle it.
I love two year olds. But mostly, I love this two year old. How could you not?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Nothing gets done around here

It's fall break.

Let me tell you what I've accomplished.


Not much.

My children being home distracts me from my to-do list.

But I can tell you that I've washed more dishes than humanly possible. How is it that I need to refill the dishwasher thrice daily? How is it?! Do you have any idea how many dishes that is?! Come on children! One cup a day, rinse and reuse. That's my mantra. I should've started saying it on Monday.


I have been able to dissect all the available info, and have put together a plan for our 3 month food storage. This took quite a bit longer than expected. (I was right, Gluten Free makes it challenging. But not impossible.) I am thoroughly excited about it and cannot wait to start purchasing bulk quantities of canned goods. That's right, thoroughly excited. And you should be too. Excited that is. About food storage. Who knew it could be so fun and liberating? Kammie did. She was our most recent Cannery/Food Storage Specialist. And she's laughing at the rest of us right now. Wagging her finger and smirking, I'm sure. It's okay, we deserve it, those of us who did not heed her calls to store up. Kammie, can you hear me? I'm sorry Kammie, really sorry. I should've listened. Please forgive me.

My 3 month supply will include items such as chicken enchiladas and pumpkin muffins. It might take me a year or two to collect all the food, but in the end, we'll be eating pretty.

By the way, pumpkin muffins rock.


By the way, my kids have lived outside all week. They've had wrestling tournaments on the trampoline and played war on the swing set. My windows are open and I've been baking. I love the fall. By the way.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ummmm, what?

Today when I called a friend of mine, her husband answered.

"May I speak with _______," I asked, customer-service-like politely.

"She's had a rough morning and is taking a nap right now," says husband.

Here's where it got dicey. Don't ask me why I said this, it just came out.

"Well, when she's aroused, could you have her call me?" asked I.

Uncomfortable Pause ensues.

"Suuurrrre," he finally answers.

I hang up the phone and wonder, well, that didn't sound right.

And then I flush red and my mouth gapes open. Aroused?!! I said aroused, to her husband. I told her husband to call me when his wife was aroused. AROUSED!

And I'm sure he will never look at me the same again.

(for the record, I meant to say 'when she arises' or 'when she rouses'. I just combined them into one sentence.)

My trash runneth over

I witnessed a miracle today. I mean yesterday.

As many of you know, I have trashy problems. Remember when our can went missing? That was an awful couple of days.

This past weekend my sweetest installed winter grass. (I know, I know, isn't that like unenvironmentally friendly? Shouldn't I just let it go dormant to save on water? Guess what? I have four children. It's only nice enough to be outside during the winter. It wasn't even a hard choice. Don't hate me because I plant.)

In order to plant the rye, you must remove all summer bermuda from your lawn. It is a tedious job. One of mowing 3 feet, emptying the grass clippings from the mower bag, and repeating for all 1300 square feet. (We aren't even talking the backyard yet.)

As my professor was doing this, certain words came from his mouth. Mostly they had to do with, "I can't believe I let you talk me into Bobsod @!#$*!!*#". Why was he so perturbed? Because Bobsod is unbelievably thick, think carpet-like. It's awesome to play on, really bouncy and soft. But it's not so fun to remove. It took him a looooong time. (We aren't even talking the backyard yet.) It was a lot of mowing, emptying, mowing, emptying, mowing, emptying.

Take a moment to ponder all that emptying. You can imagine that we had a serious trash problem. Where does one put 10-12 large bags of dead grass? Especially when we are still a garbage producing family? And the trash man doesn't show up until Monday?

By Sunday night we had 9 grass bags on the side yard and 4 indoor garbage bags in the garage. Take a moment to imagine the smell.

Monday came and my prof told me to go to our neighbors cans and see if they had any room, ie. put some of our trash in theirs. Ummm, isn't that illegal? Is their such a thing as garbage fraud? I felt dirty all over even opening their lids. Of course, their was no room.

So I stuffed our can as full as I could, with 4 extra bags spilling out the top. And waited. The trash man doesn't come until late afternoon.

I came home from an errand and discovered he had come. I took the bags from the garage and some of the bags on the side yard and almost filled it back up. And then I left it there on the curb. Why did I leave it on the curb? Sometimes I'll put it away, sometimes I'll just pull it into the driveway. But yesterday I left it on the curb, almost full.

And then the miracle.

The trash man, he came again. He came again! I heard his truck pull up, stop, and drive away. I looked outside and saw the can lid was closed. I went to check. It was empty! Empty! I had witnessed a miracle, a tender mercy. My trash was overflowing and he had emptied it. Again.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

To my dearest prof:

Aren't you worried about the possibility of being on the receiving end of a rock, thrown through your office window? There's a lot of Anti-Canadian sentiment out there, I'm sure. I'm glad to see you haven't deterred from your patriotism. And Einsteinism. Wait, isn't that an element?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Brick walls all around me

Do you, any of you, wonder why I post? I mean, what is the point of my blog? To marvel at my children? To find humor in the mundane? To discuss running? The answer is, yes.

Do you ever wonder why I don't post more personal topics? It isn't that I don't enjoy a good laugh/cry or testimony building experience. I love reading all about yours, so please, by all means, continue. It's just that emotionally charged stories and such are hard for me. Don't get me wrong, I can definitely pour my heart out over the keyboard. I just have a hard time letting you look at them.

Why is that? What is it about me, that doesn't like showing you, my faithful readers, my innermost thoughts and feelings and experiences?

Honestly, I'm not sure.

Do I fear judgement? Yes, but that's not the whole of it. Here, I will try to explain.

You know how you find yourself sitting in a pew on the first Sunday of the month? Here you are, minding your own business, tending to the needs of your children, poking your husband awake, listening with one ear and one eye. And suddenly you know. You know you're going to get up. You don't want to, you try to suppress. But you know. And pretty soon you are standing, your feet are taking you to the front of the chapel, up to the pulpit, and you find yourself sharing the one thing most sacred to you, for all to hear. And your heart is bleeping out of your ribs and your face is red all the way down to your chest and you are avoiding any and all eye contact, and you are talking 800 words a minute.

Phew, and you're done.

But see, that's not the worst part. The worst part, in my opinion, is the aftermath. It's the smiles and the pats on the back and the "I really liked your testimony" comments that come for the next few hours. Why does this bother me? I mean, isn't the whole point of sharing so that others can get something out of it? So that we can lift each other as a whole? Why do I cringe at every compliment? Why do I wish I could just go home and forget the whole thing?

I think, and I could be wrong, but for me, I think it's because I've let myself become vulnerable. I've exposed the real me, raw and open for all to see and, let's face it, judge. (We're not even discussing the whole problem of "What if I said it wrong?" I know there are rules, I read the Ensign. What if I thanked instead of testified? What if I used the wrong words or stumbled over my thoughts incoherently? What if I sounded like an illiterate? These are real worries.)

This problem of showing my vulnerability trickles down to my blog as well. I just can't. I've tried a few times, but end up removing the post or posting a lot until the offending post gets relegated to the archives. I can't even look at it, much less the comments.

So for now, I will keep my personal stuff personal. And I will continue to enlighten you with my wit and charm, my children and my professor, my running. You know, my regular life.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008


It's snack time, and around here, pickings have been pretty slim as of late.

I'm trying to cut back on the processed food for two reasons: money, and a desire to feed my children more than chicken nuggets and french fries every other day. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I still do it, just on occasion instead of it being the norm. But the main reason is money.

I've cut out many extras on our grocery list. We are down to the bare essentials, so that hopefully we can reduce our weekly food costs and start a food storage program. That's right, I said start. I know now is the most inopportune time to start, but it's better than not starting at all, right? A bad start is better than no start. Start start start start start. What a funny word. It's a star with a tart on the end.

So like I said, it's snack time, and long gone are the goldfishes, the fruit cups, the fruit snacks, the cookies, the wafers, the crackers, the granola bars, pretty much anything that comes individually packaged. (I still buy some of that stuff for the older kids lunches(school lunches are $2.25 each!!! Multiply that by 2 children and it's over $20 a week for food that my chitlin's will only eat half of. Ridiculous. Plus, no gluten free offerings.)

The call comes, "I'm so hunnnngrrry! Can I have a snack?" says he.

"Sure," I reply.

"What can I have," he says.

"What do you want?" I ask.

"What have we got?" he volleys back.

Good question. I search the fridge, then the pantry. Like I said, slim pickings.

"How about peanut butter on a stick?" I offer.

"Shhoooore," says he.

I dig up a plastic knife and scoop out some pb for him, and then another for his sister.

"Mom," he grins, "it's like a peanut butter popsicle."

Yep, a peanut butter popsicle.

At least he's not using his finger to dig it out of the jar.

Like his mom does.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008


My sweet Cannon asked today,

"Mom, can we get our car a tattoo?"


"A tattoo, like the one in that car's window," he pointed out.

He was of course looking at a sticker of an animal of some sort, pasted in the back window of a large truck. It wasn't a bumper sticker per se, but a vinyl sticker in the outline of this animal that I cannot remember. A fish, maybe?

"Do you think our car would look cool with a tattoo?" I ask, as we pull our minivan into the garage.

"Yeah, but we have to go to a special place where they put them on." he says, informatively.

"A tattoo shop?" I offer.

"Yeah, a special tattoo store where they put them on the cars."

Is it against my religion to give my car a tat?