Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Overheard Wednesday

~ "Mom, some of the of leaves that have changed colors on the trees are the same color as diarrhea."
~ "Oh's a clift hanger!," said at the end of her favorite show.

Monday, October 12, 2009

What Are You Looking At?

I have gotten to the point that, if I am going to continue to blog, I need a new look. I know there are people for these sorts of things. I would love any and all suggestions, as well as some referrals, to people who might be able to help me. Blog-wise, that is. (Please don't send me numbers to the local therapist. I will ask for those numbers and referrals in a different post.)

As I listen to my children squabble, I begin to wonder if all children come wired with the same faulty programming that requires them to whine, cry, and throw tantrums over a sibling gazing in their direction. I remember as a child, sitting at the table for breakfast, building a fort around my cereal bowl with cereal boxes, because Kaylene, my sister, was either looking at me or my cereal. I know.........the gall of some people. I still clearly remember my annoyance! Humph! Thinking about it still sorta ticks me off. OK, it might be time for you to give me those other numbers now. Back to the topic at hand......You know, my children will actually throw punches over a sibling looking at them. With four kids in the house, there is a good chance, somebody is going to look at you. Since my children are not biological, I am assuming it is not my genetics, and, well, Kaylene doesn't live with us, so I am assuming that it is not environmental. I am going with the faulty wiring theory.

Let's sum up. I need a new look for my blog, and I don't even care if you are looking at me.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Overheard Wednesday

The title is self explanatory. I really don't want to forget all the cute funny things the Sea Monkeys say, so I am going to record them here. I hear too many things during the week to give each of them their own story, not to mention I would bore you all to tears.

Wild Child says
~"Dad, we found a dead mouse in the lawn at school, but I didn't eat it."
~said in her bed time prayers, "Please help me to get strong enough to crush dad."
~"WBU when you could be you?" She thinks this is hilarious

Little Jamaican
~"Grandma, why does your face always look like that?"
~"Knock, knock" Little Jamaican
Me, "Whose there?"
Little Jamaican, "Banana."
Me, "Banana who?"
Little Jamaican, "Banana butt cheeks." Don't ask me. I don't know. I think we need to find more appropriate knock-knock jokes.

My Son
~"I wanna be da bad guy."

The 1st One
~"I have two words. N-O!"

Monday, October 5, 2009

Swingin' moods

As I am uploading pictures from my camera yesterday, I came across these:

These are from a day we went out to Promontory to see a static fire. As I look through them, I notice the expressions and can't help but think about this:

Friday, October 2, 2009

Who's coming over?

Everyday, I get up and suggest to my family that WE need to get the house picked up and cleaned. Everyday, they act as if this is some new form of torture that I have invented to make their lives hellish. What I don't understand is how this is a new concept to them every single day. How they don't get (after years of me telling them, showing them, and reminding them) where the dirty clothes go, where the toys go, and where the trash goes.

Then there are the books. Books are becoming a love-hate type of thing in my house. The 1st One is always reading. Good if you are also willing to help with other stuff and not reading all night instead of sleeping. My Son has two books he wants read over and over and over again. I am so tired of reading about Star Wars I could cry. What is worse, I get to hear the epic battle played out again and again in his bed at night. For an hour you can hear battle cries, clashes, and, my all time favorite, "OH NOOOOOOOOOOO! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGHHHHHHHHHHHH! HELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLP MEEEEEEEEEEEEE! AGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" The Wild Child will cry for hours if she can not find the book she is looking for and will cry for days if the book she is looking for is in the possession of a sibling. Which brings me to the Little Jamaican.... Oh, that girl! She loves books. I am not sure how the books feel about her. If she would just read them and look at them we would be in good shape, but she likes to build with them, make them into blankets to sleep under at night (don't get me started with that), she likes to draw/color in them, and occasionally remove an offending page from the book. (Sorry I got off on a tangent here.) So the books get left out all over the house.

I would really like to understand what happens in my bathrooms. The combination of paper, water, hair products, and whatever else is in there could seriously cause the EPA to make me placard my bathrooms with signs such as this.
However, the part that has me most perplexed is this. Everyday when I say we are going to pick-up and/or clean the house, the response is always the same. They always ask, "Who's coming over?" They seem to be under the impression that we only need a clean house if we are having guests over. In their defense, I become much more adamant about the task-at-hand when we are expecting people over, but certainly a woman could desire to walk through her living room with out threat to her feet or use a toilet in her own home without having to hover.

So today is no different, I am off to get this place cleaned before we have guests. I am assuming they would rather not hover.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Unfulfilled Expectations

While attending the family ward for the area I lived in, I was invited by the bishop to attend the singles' ward. If you aren't LDS, wards are where areas are divided up into congregations. I really had no desire to attend but decided to give it a try. There was a chance I would meet some people I would like and maybe I would enjoy the change of scenery. So...I decided to go one Sunday.

Sacrament meeting was fine, though a little strange since there were no babies crying, no kids fighting over crayons in loud whispers, no mommies or daddies standing in the back rocking a child, or all the other things that were so comforting to me about a family ward. The family ward had all the right sounds as far as I was concerned.

I remember nothing of Sunday School that day, but in Relief Society (women's organization within the church), was a lesson I will never forget. The topic was on "Unfulfilled Expectations." Truth is, we all go through this in our lives. We all have times that we expect things will go one way and they go another. Learning to deal with these with faith and grace is something most of us desire. Did I mention I was 21? That is an important piece of information in this story. At this point in my life I had had my fair share of disappointment, not more than most, just the average amount. There was much for me take from this lesson until it turned into something else all together.

As there were many women in this Relief Society approaching 30, the lesson turned into "Why am I not married?" At 21, I knew why I wasn't married. It was because I didn't want to be yet. Besides that, I had to wait till I was 22 to meet Prince Charming. Though now, with maturity, I can clearly see why, within my religion's culture, that would put some into a certain amount of distress. At the time, I could not wait to get out of there. I had a whole life ahead of me filled with twists and turns and accomplishments and, yes, unfulfilled expectations. I had plenty of time to find the person I wanted to build my forever with.

Which brings me to this.......I will be 38 in January. I am OK with that. (Well mostly) Maybe I am having a mini mid-life crisis. The doctor whom I renamed suggested that I had 'til 40 to try and have biological children. After that, he said we are pretty much done. So now I am wondering, if I think I am happy just having the 4 beautiful, amazing, though somewhat feral children, or will I later find myself with unfulfilled expectations? If I have another one or two will it be more than I can handle? Is it worth all the heartache and the emotional roller coaster that is the treatment for infertility? Will I regret not trying everything under the sun to get pregnant? Will I be OK not knowing what might have been? I have children, so I fulfilled that expectation, but still, all the other questions I don't have answers for, threaten my peace of mind.

So my real problem is this: I am fence sitting. With things like this, taking no action and not making a choice almost always leads to Unfulfilled Expectations. You are left feeling like you had no control in the situation or you had control and forfeited said control. I want to make a choice, and know that I made the right one, so that I don't look back with regrets.

So, there you have it. My unwelcomed deep thoughts for the day. I was hoping for a light and funny post, but this is what came pouring out. Huh.......

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

What am I teaching them?

Tonight we went out for ice cream cones at McD's as a family. Now this particular location is the nicest I have ever been in and has service that out does most other restaurants in the area. As we are sitting there in the dining area eating our ice cream cones, Fox News is going on all the TV's. There is coverage on Obama's comments to Iran; there are comments on school children singing praises to Obama; and lots and lots of other Obama stuff from the panel of commentators they have on. I think my children are not even paying attention. Then I hear the Wild Child say, "Hey, I think that was President Obama." Wondering what she was thinking relative to that, I asked her what she thought about President Obama. Her very certain reply, "Obama is just like Satan." "What? Why would you say that Wild Child?" I ask as I look around to see who might have overheard her. The 1st One chimes in with, "Well, he tells lies." Huh..... Now I am thinking, "Have I ever lead them to believe that I think our president is less than honorable?" I was clear during the elections that I was not in favor of either canidate. That I was not certain of their sincerity or their integrity. When he was going to speak to the school children, I told my children that we would discuss whatever the President had to say when they came home since I was not sure of what he would say. I did not know if he would say something contrary to what we believe or not. (Their school opted to not show the brodcast so it ended up being a non-issue.) All that into consideration, I am not sure I would have jumped to the conclusion that "Obama is just like Satan.", though I may have jumped to the "Well, he tells lies." It really makes me wish there was more honesty in politics. I wish that we did not have to question everything that our politicians say, that we could trust whatever came out of Washington, our states, counties, and cities.

Anyway, I think it is safe to say that I have minority children who are not in favor of the current administration. I will have to ask some more questions soon to see how they came to these conclusions and why they feel the way they do. It will be interesting to hear what they have to say.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Hot Pursuit.....

Sometimes I think it is just a matter of time before I find myself wondering where I went wrong.... Wondering why I am seeing one of my sweet beautiful children on an episode of "COPS." It's not so much the lack of respect for my authority or the screaming they hate me when we have to leave the mall play area or even the brawls they get into with each other that worry me the most. It is their sense of adventure. The constant question in their mind that says, "I wonder what will happen if I do this?" You know like when the Wild Child cut up a whole mess of stuff in her brother's closet or the feathers, knee deep in a bedroom, when they opened a down pillow.

Today, it was the Little Jamaican who let that question get the best of her. All morning long, before kindergarten, I kept asking her to find her homework so we could turn it in today. She kept telling me it was lost and that she couldn't find it. Every time I reminded her, she was watching TV. (Dora has a way of sucking that child in.) Finally, I turn off the TV and tell her she has to find it. After a half-hearted attempt, and claiming it was no where to be found, I started looking for it myself. I found it a short time later. So this is why I was so surprised when we went to load up in the family mini-van to hear her exclaim, with a smirk on her face, "Look what I did, Mom." I looked to find she had drawn on the side of the van with what appears to be permanent marker. What concerned me most, was, after losing some privileges and a scolding, she still could not wipe that little smirky smile off her face.

So, all the marker did not come off, but more than I thought would did. So this has me wondering, "When I will be getting that call to come post bail?"

Monday, July 13, 2009

Let's Say.......

Let's say that someone's six year old insists that her clothes match, even though this someone knows they do not. Let's say the six year old continues her campaign until said someone does not care anymore. This sweet six year old now believes that she can argue anything to become her version of reality. Now, I see no sense in arguing with a six year old over trivial matters. If she wants to wear mismatched clothing, by all means have at it. BUT, do not expect me to tell you it matches.

I have noticed adults around me who have learned similar lessons. Adults who think that selective memory is going to save them from harsh realities. Some think they can out wait whatever it is that they don't want to deal with, thus making it a non-issue. Others believe they can convince those around them that their mismatched socks do indeed match.

This reminds me that in many places, if you do not know the law and you break it, you are still held accountable. Even if you are amazing at rationalizing your actions, most would still hold you accountable for a myriad of transgressions. For instance, we once thought we had re-registered one of our vehicles and found out later when a ticket was given to a family member that it was not. The officer did not care that we were certain we had done our duty. He didn't care it was not my family member's truck. He especially did not care that we never got a renewal notice.

When I started this post I thought my frustration was with people choosing to be oblivious as a defense mechanism, when, as it turns out, my frustration seems to be more with rationalization. Huh..... This is another fabulous reason to blog. It is so much cheaper than therapy.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Quotable's from the Wild Child.

There are days I hear things from my children that I could never make up on my own. The Wild Child says something almost daily that cause me to quietly chuckle to myself. The world through her eyes is a much more interesting place, than the world through mine.

There was a day this past week that the quotable's were flying faster than I could write them down. (If I didn't write them down, they would be gone from memory in 24 hours.)

We have once again been invaded by earwigs. I would like to go on record that I HATE those things. EWWWW! I have been killing 100's a night. We have been using all kinds of methods to rid ourselves of these annoying creatures. I am happy to report as of last night I only killed 4 in the house. I still found one in the bed, but he was dead, so I can live with the progress made. The Sea Monkeys are not as afraid this year of the earwigs. In fact, they will kill earwigs themselves. Anyway, I digress, to get these little pests under control, a trip to my local IFA was in order. That store has a wide variety of solutions and potions to get rid of any pest that ails you. I tell the Sea Monkeys before entering the store that they must keep their hands to themselves because there would poisons and such. If you have spent anytime with children, you know they had to touch everything. Upon checking out, I ask the clerk if they had public restrooms so my children might wash their hands. She pointed me in the direction and we headed down the long hall way. I am thinking.....If we are here, we should all make a pit stop. I can only talk My Son and the Little Jamaican into such a thought. As I am headed out of a stall, I can hear the 1st One and the Wild Child discussing the vending machine in the women's bathroom. "What is it?" I hear the 1st One ponder. "Well, I know that one is a cigarette.", I hear the Wild Child explain, "But I don't know what that one is." Then I hear the 1st One ask, "Mom, what's a taaaaam.....what's a taaammmmmpooooon?" During our trip to this wonderland of woman's bathroom vending machines, a sales associate has come to use the facilities. She can no longer control her snickers and is full on cracking up behind her stall door.

Later, I have to go to Costco to pick up some prints of pictures my sweet SIL took for me. I tell my kids that we are going to pick up something kind of fun. I hear grumbling and displeasure from the back seats. Then above the murmuring I hear the Wild Child rant, "I know you are NOT going to buy anything fun! NOTHING! You're not buying a water slide or a swimming pool OR A UNICYCLE ARE YOU?" What??? A unicycle? When did Costco start selling those? Apparently we have different ideas of fun.

Finally it is time for the Rocket Scientist to come home from work. I love that time of day. I love to see his beautiful blue eyes and the way he makes sure to come kiss me when he walks in the door. I must say, this guy knows how to make his wife feel special. This day is no different. There were no comments from the peanut gallery. Huh? I should have known better. As I continued to work on the kitchen, the Rocket Scientist thought he would steal another kiss. This time the Sea Monkeys notice. "EEEEEWWWW," collectively. That is every parents right to scar their children with the knowledge that their parents kiss. But then.....the Wild Child pipes up with, "I know what kind of kiss that is! It's a China kiss!" Seriously, it was more than a peck, but it had no definitive nationality. Really!

So to sum it up here. They sell cigarettes in the women's bathrooms called taaaampoooons. Unicycles are the epitome of fun and China kissing has been observed. I wonder what tomorrow will bring?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Did You Think I Would Ever Blog Again?

There were moments I had my doubts too. Since the beginning of the year I have struggled with emotional survival. The loss of loved ones, the pressures of motherhood and other various things were threatening to crush me emotionally. I am not complaining and I am certainly not making excuses, I am just coming clean.

I love to look at life like I am a spectator sometimes instead of a participant. I love how that changes my perception of "situations." That said, recently a "situation" happened to someone I adore. No matter how I look at it, I often lose perspective. I have not wanted to blog. I was afraid I would say something I shouldn't or perceive something to be something it is not.

I am feeling stronger now and my sense of humor is returning. I have a bunch of blog fodder and am ready to to start flinging it. Not to mention, I am jonesing to catch up with the blogs I follow.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Is Mexico Know For It's Salt or It's Restrooms?

Last week or was that a week and a half ago......anyway, driving to Carson City, NV, for my grandfather's funeral, we made many pit stops. At one point a family member we were traveling with threatened to put her 30 year old husband in Depends. Truthfully, it was those under the age of 8 that we stopped for the most. As we are rolling into the rest area at the Salt Flats, the little Jamaican looks around and asks with all the excitement of Christmas morning, "Are we in Mexico?" I have never been to Mexico, but this is not what I expect it to look like, but to the Little Jamaican, it might as well have been. This part of Interstate 80 is about the most boring stretch of road ever. That is unless you get out, walk around in the salt, taste it if you are one of my Sea Monkeys, which the Wild Child emphatically exclaimed, "It's just like real salt!", or desperately need a restroom and have just found one.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

My Mom's Parents.....

So these thoughts starting flowing about the time I had no time to share them. I am frantically trying to get everything ready so that we can leave Friday morning for my grandpa's funeral. But, since the thoughts are here I will find some time when I should be sleeping to make up for the time I am spending now to write down my thoughts.

My first memory of my grandparents is at their home in South Lake Tahoe. If you have never been to Tahoe, you owe it to yourself to go at least once in your life. To me it is heaven. On the occasions I was permitted to stay with my grandparents for a few nights, I would get to sleep between them in their bed. (There were never any monsters in Grandma and Grandpa's bed.) I remember how the carpet smelled in their house. Is that weird? I remember celebrating Christmas in their house. The snow and the hill in the backyard was perfect for sledding. I can still see my grandma hanging out her clothes to dry on a line that was on a pulley that went from the eaves of the house to the other side of the yard. She would stand there and hang one article of clothing at a time, pulling the line to make room for the next. My grandma was a bit of a neat freak, but she never made you feel unwelcome because of it. You know how things like pillows shift when you sit on a couch? Well when you got up she would straighten them when you weren't looking. You would have to be sneaky if you wanted to catch her doing it. When we would first arrive at my grandparents, my grandpa would pick us up and hug us so tight that I was sure he loved me more than anyone else loved me. He could hug so tight that sometimes I thought it would be OK if he loved me a tiny bit less.

Some years later my grandparents moved to Carson City, Nevada, which was great since that is where we lived at the time. Grandparents closer is always good. I remember sitting at the bar in my grandma's kitchen while she cooked us "noodle soup" for lunch, aka Top Ramen. I loved that stuff as a kid. When the soup was too hot, she would pour a little cold water in the soup to help it cool. Well one day we must have had her a little frazzled because when my sister said hers was too hot, grandma poured a little milk in my sister's soup. Grandma was clearly annoyed at what she had done, but my sister didn't care. She ate it anyway. Not long after that we learned that my grandma had cancer.

I know that my grandfather spent his life savings trying to save his wife. There was never any question about how grandpa felt about grandma. So much so that when my grandma's health started to really decline, the nurse who cared for my grandma commented that she wished someone would love her even half as much as my grandpa loved my grandma. My grandma knew she was going to die. She would say, "I don't know what the Lord has planned for me, but I wish he would just get on with it." My grandma died shortly after my eighth birthday. I still miss her almost 30 years later. Before she died, she had a "heart-to-heart" with my grandpa that no wife ever wants to have with her husband. Grandma knew that Grandpa needed a wife or he would be miserable and difficult to deal with and she told him so. As they were having this conversation she expressed to him that she wanted him to re-marry and that she thought he should marry the nurse that cared for her. Now I ask you......Could you do that? I love my husband fiercely and I would want him to be happy......I just don't know if I could know who she was or pick her out. OK, truthfully, I don't know if I can really stand the thought of him being married to anybody but me, but the Rocket Scientist would have to re-marry too. Months after my grandma passed away, my grandpa married my Grandma Carma. She was the nurse that cared for my grandma.

One of the coolest things about gaining another grandma was that I gained two more aunts and an uncle. (Grandma Carma's children from another marriage.) Something that I have always been thankful for. It honestly felt like more people to love and more people to love me. When I was twelve, we moved away from Carson City, but through the years we have visited often.

When my grandpa passed away a little over week ago I felt like I knew him better in his last days here with us than I did before. Funny how someone all of your life has been "framed" one way. To me he was just Grandpa. As I looked at his large frame in what seemed like a tiny hospital bed, I realized for the first time, he was a lot more than Grandpa. He was the son of Swedish immigrants, a brother (number two of five children) , a father of seven children and a husband. He was a business owner, a friend, and a man with dreams, goals, failures, and accomplishments. I also learned there was more to his sense of humor than I knew most of my life. For instance, my grandpa loved caffeine-free Diet Coke and chocolate chip cookies. In fact I have heard it said that he was the original Cookie Monster. I am certain for the last couple of years that he has tried to sustain his life on this particular diet, though there were many that tried to convince him to eat things that were better for him. When my grandpa knew he was going to die in a few days, my Grandma Carma asked him if he thought there would be Diet Coke in heaven. His reply was "Nooooo!" Grandma Carma then asked, "Then what will you drink, Ed?" His quick as a whip reply was, "I'll just drink water."

I have more stories about my grandpa I will share in following posts, but for now, it's back to laundry and getting ready to get out of town. Thanks for listening......

Sunday, May 3, 2009

I'm Still Here and Other Blah Blah......

I have had blog material flying at me. I have had things I have desperately needed, wanted to record so that I would have it to look back at and chuckle. have all heard nothing from me. Even if I don't get out here what I want to share, I will for go sleep to hear what you, my trusted bloggy friends have to say. So why the absence?

Here is my excuse:

To whom it may concern: Please excuse Karen for neglecting her blog and yours for the past couple of weeks. Her grandfather recently passed away and she has felt she needed to write a post about him and his life before she did any more blogging. This has turned out to be more difficult than she would have expected. She had no idea that she would miss him so much or have such difficulty expressing her thoughts and feelings and organizing the facts. Sincerely, Karen's Self-defense Department.

I have come to realize a few things about me. Anything I put in this blog is here because I don't want to forget. I also care that you read it or want to read it. I shouldn't care, but I think if it isn't something you want to will I ever be able to get my posterity to be interested in what my life was. These thoughts also bring me to want to make sure all my facts are straight. (Especially in regards to my grandpa.) I suppose I think of this blog as my journal and one day plan to publish it at Blurb or something like that so that one day my when I leave this earth, my grandchildren and great-grandchildren will know who I was. They will know what I cared about. They will know that my life was not perfect, but that in time most pain fades and love remains.

So if you made it through all that.....I am working on a post about my sweet grandpa that will make you smile. Until I get it finished, this is what I heard from the Wild Child and the 1st One today:

1st One: Mom, Wild Child has lotion all over her bed rails.
Me: (Raise eyebrow.)
Wild Child: Dad said I could. It's so that bad guy won't be able to steal me.
Me: (Shaking my head)
1st One: (Starts helping the Wild Child put more lotion on the side rails of the loft bed.)
Me: (Thinking, why didn't I think of that.)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Questions and Estrogen Don't Mix

Last week, after picking up the 1st One and the Wild Child from school, a heated debate erupted from the back seat. This is not new news. It happens almost daily. The new part was the topic of disagreement.

The Wild Child asked if ducks have tongues. The 1st One insists that they do because she has seen a duck's tongue before. The Wild Child of course is not convinced that her sister is right. Then the "you're stupids" and the "I hate yous" are flying before I can even begin to say, "I don't know if ducks have tongues, but we can look it up as soon as we get home." Fortunately they mellowed until the Wild Child and her inquisitive brain decided to try one more time to start World War 3. In her sweet little voice she asks, "Mom......Are pandas bears?" Once again before I can respond the 1st One is answering with, "Panda-BEAR, Polar-BEAR, they are BEARS!" You know that infuriated the Wild Child and the insults were flying again. I just don't get enough of that, so before my head exploded, I explained we would look that up to when we got home and there was to be no more talking. Finally, two seconds peace.

So if you are wondering......All birds have tongues, even ducks. As for the panda, well, scientists don't seem to be able to agree either. Some say they are more like raccoons and others say they are more like bears. Fortunately, that was acceptable to my girls.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Wonder Woman and other Thoughts by Red.

My friend, who I refer to as Red, has been kind enough to write a guest post for me. I love her sense of humor and her ability to enjoy the good with the bad.


How is it that some people seem to have 48 hour days while the rest of us get 24? I recently met a woman who is the author of five books, works as an attorney, is involved in her local city government, has four young adult sons, and if that isn't enough, she's undergoing radiation treatments for breast cancer. Adding to life's challenges is the recent job loss of her husband forcing the necessitation of selling their home. And to top it all off, she's chipper, thoughtful, and positive. If it was me, local donut shops would need to get busy making enough product to satisfy all my stress-diverting, fattening but comforting, circular sweet treat needs.
That sort of woman must have (and deserves) one of those magical Samantha-from-Bewitched noses to accomplish so much. I'm probably better off as a 24-hourer (I know that's not a word). My only potential superhero trait is Super Spelling and I've got a long way to go to get there. When "Lightning-fast Mood Swings" becomes an acceptable superhero power, I'm golden! I should be content as-is; it would be hard to deal with the intense chafing caused by those Wonder Woman gold bracelets-- especially with the price of Neosporin these days.
I'd like to have a mature, spiritual, and professional response to my new Wonder Woman friend having to go through radiation and other difficult challenges... but all I can think is THAT IS SO LAME. I'd say it "sucks" but using that word here in Utah could brand me as a heretic and we're already on thin ice since the overt display of black skeleton lawn flamingos last Halloween. In the past, when our attitudes or behavior were outside the Utah Acceptability Code, we'd just say, "We're Californians," and people would tilt their heads and nod with understanding, but we've lived here for six years now so that doesn't fly anymore.
Breast cancer is such a no-fair disease. No real rhyme or reason to its targets. I was going to say its "victims" but women are too strong for a word like that. I've had quite a bit of it in my family. I was even tested for the BRCA gene after I let my paranoia get the better of me (I don't have it but that isn't a guarantee). I was considering a preventative mastectomy at the time. My aunts, both breast cancer survivors first diagnosed before 50, strongly advised me against it. I thought it might be good to get rid of potentially hazardous tissue-- especially if I could use the empty space more efficiently by having a zipper implanted so I could use them as coin purses. My old stick-in-the-mud doctor said no... what a dream squasher.
As a mom in year five of chronic neck pain from something not my fault (a car accident caused by a guy looking down to roll up his window and smashing into the back of me), I can imagine a little of what it is to be sidelined by health issues. Like Wonder Woman, I was one who didn't like wasting time. In my past on-the-move life, I even taped Ensign articles to my shower door each day so I didn't waste time just standing there washing my hair (cuckoo! cuckoo!). Since the accident, I've adjusted my time/accomplishment ratio to suit my physical limitations.
When I was in pain, I'd say to my Heavenly Father, as nicely as possible, "Do you know how much good I could accomplish if I wasn't in agony every day?!" Alas, He had so much in store for me to learn. I still think I would've been just as good a student if He dropped a "What to Learn from Challenges" book at my feet, but whatever. He's in charge. The old "These experiences make you stronger" bit sounds hollow amidst suffering. I just thought, "Poop! I'm strong enough; any stronger and I'd have freakishly broad man shoulders or be a major no-necker like those weird body builder guys." (Oh, no offense if you know any of those men. I'm sure their personalities are A+.)
I don't at all mean to make light of what must be a head-popping, stressful time of life for WW. I assume from the sweet, hilarious, and great attitude of her messages that she's not usually in the mood for seriousness. I'm just getting into writing what I want again after not having more time or energy for anything other than my work as a correspondent and mother of six so meeting yet another person who gets so much done is a thrill.
WW's willingness to add to her list of responsibilities with community service work amazes me. I hope she's up and at 'em faster than a flash. I know she's added yet another person (me!) in the world who'll be praying for her to bounce back faster than... a speeding bullet? after a bad perm?... that springy thing at the bottom of a door? ... one of those boxing things on a pole that goes BOING when someone way stronger than me hits it? Well, you get the idea.
It's great to have all sorts of friends; overachievers, underachievers, donut eaters or marathon runners., I like them all. A wide variety of people in one's life keeps things interesting. For those of us stuck with only 24 hours in a day, I say "Hang in there. Just do your best, my healthy-wristed sisters." I try to be a friend to all types because even wonder women need a break sometimes. And when they do, I'll be there to help, Neosporin in hand.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Is Flunk a Bad Word?

You know the moments in life you hope desperately to avoid? The 1st One has brought it to my attention that I will have many a minutes like this in my life.

In the 1st One's sweet innocence the other day, she tells me the book she is reading has a bad word in it. Thinking to myself, "What is she reading?" I decide to ask her what the word is. She spells it for me. "F-L-U-N-K." Wow, OK, well. I explain though this word is not a bad word, no one likes to flunk. I lamely try to give her a definition she will understand. She insists that her teacher said that is was a bad word. I think for a minute......"Well, it sort of sounds like a really bad word, but flunk is not a bad word." Her reply, "Oh, (insert F-bomb here) is a bad word!" I finish hyperventilating, knowing that all my children have now logged that word somewhere in their sweet little heads to be used as ammo in the future. I say that yes, she is right. "Sweetheart, that is the worst swear word I know of. So much so, that Mommy has never said it. Please don't ever say that again. OK?" Amazingly enough, she has been very mad at me for the last few days, but has not used that lovely word. I am counting my blessings.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Red's Funny Sarcasm

I have a friend who makes me laugh on a regular basis. I believe that such friends are the stuff that sanity is made of. Even when this friend is having a not so pleasant day, she has a way of making me laugh. The following is an e-mail she sent me, on St. Patrick's Day. I got permission to share it, though she thinks that I will be the only one to think it's funny. You will all have to let me know if it's just my warped sense of humor or if my friend is truly funny.

Here is what you need to know before reading this. Red has six children ranging from 16 to 5 years of age. Alice is the oldest and Holly the youngest. Mike is her husband. Names and places have been changed to protect the innocent.....or whatever.....

"Remember all the kind things I said about Alice? Yeah, scratch that! Mike went out to the garage last night and the car door was open. He told me to check everything in my purse. My ATM card was missing. Last night Alice asked if she could go get Boca burgers from the store. I said yes. When I realized my card was gone, I called her and asked if she'd seen it. "No," was her quick reply. She said she'd look through her stuff just in case. Mike called the bank and a $4 purchase had just been made at Leeker's. When Alice got home, I confronted her in the garage. She still said she hadn't seen it. After she could tell I was going to shove my fist through her lying teeth, she pulled my card out of her shirt! I asked her how many times she'd done that before and she said, "I don't know. Maybe once or twice." Ha! What a fricking liar! As Mike reviewed our statements, it turns out she's made quite a few purchases at 7-11, a place I never go, over the last 3 months or more. She's probably stolen hundreds of dollars. All the while, laughing to herself as I defended her as a good person over and over.
I called the police, made sure it wouldn't go on her record, and asked them to come scare the crap out of her. Gotta love the local P.D. He said, "I can do two things: come talk to her while you're there or come put handcuffs on her and talk to her in my patrol car. I prefer the tough way." Yeah, we voted for the latter. He came over, put handcuffs on her as she cried her little whiny-butt tears and took her to his car to talk with her about what a felony is. This was all around 12:30 a.m. Nice!
I hope she got the message. I never get fit-throwing mad, but I sure was last night. I threw a shoe at her. I wanted to beat her senseless with it! I would prefer a kid who was defiant to my face over a sneak and a liar- she knows that. It sucks to be played for a fool. Perfect timing for Mike to leave out of town for the week, too. He was trying to be the good cop (he's usually the butthead- totally hard-nosed with her), joking and stuff. He's lucky he didn't leave this morning having to pass through the metal detector with my shoe up his butt!
Lucky visited our house this morning but he wasn't happy about forcing a celebration to a house of contention. I think our Lucky is in the slammer because his replacement wasn't nearly as festive. He did put an L on all the kids' foreheads. Unfortunately, Alice's stood for liar. If you see flames at our house, don't worry. It's just Alice's pants on fire.
So, that's more than you wanted to know about our day. I'm dropping the kids at school and sleeping for awhile. Holly is dying to watch the new Spongebob--today's her lucky day! I know Alice will be O.K. in the end. She is a good person, but to be honest, I'd rather her be a skank than a liar. It's probably good parents don't get to choose their kids' faults. After seeing what serious trouble they can get into, I'd probably choose the package that includes no sense of humor, Chicklet teeth, a hyena laugh, a peg leg and an affinity for collecting scabs. While those things may put a damper on one's social life, at least they'd be honest. Grrr.. sometimes this parenting gig sucks big time! (Really, I'm not bitter either!)"

Just for the record, Red is an exceptional mother. Alice was not hit by a shoe.....Red's aim is bad. Alice has been making better decisions, Mike made it through airport security, lucky for him and as for Lucky the leprechaun.......well, I guess we will have to see if he shows up next year.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

No Loving Here

I can't remember if I have ever mentioned that as a family we struggle with traditions of our own. The Rocket Scientist had a very different version of the same holidays than I did growing up. Though, we don't argue about it, we haven't really set many traditions of our own.

One tradition we have managed to set is our Sunday night. We gather as a family and watch Extreme Makeover, Home Edition. Either the Rocket Scientist will make popcorn or I will make something else to snack on and we watch this show. I love this time. The kids will usually cuddle with us on the couch and we get to watch something of value. It is honestly about the only TV I get to see in a week.

Well Sunday night, the Wild Child announces in a very disgruntled voice, "I hate this show. It is just about loving and taking care of people and houses!" The RS and I did a double take and stifled our giggles. I think it actually comes down to she doesn't like to see me cry, but whatever. She got over it and was sitting next to me by the time they were taking down the old house.

After every episode, we talk about what we can do as a family to make this world a better place. The kids have some interesting ideas, but we will save that for another post.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter with some of my favorite's

By Del Parson

Have you ever noticed that most children when shown a picture of Christ know who it is almost every time. Well unless your grandma dates a man with a beard and your great-grandma has a dog that looks like a lamb. When my nephew Michael was little, like four-ish, his mother showed him a picture, similar to the one above. Michael's grandma dates a man named Jim, who has a very neatly trimmed beard. Jim is a very nice and attractive man who is very much family. Michael's great-grandma had a little, fluffy, curly haired dog named Boodrow. When four year old Michael was shown said picture and asked who it was, he replied, "That's Jim and Boodrow."

I know that there are rules about using others work on your blog, so I hope I am following protocol. I have linked all the pictures back to where you can learn more about the artist and/or purchase their work if you feel so inclined. These are some of my favorites and Easter seemed like the appropriate day to share them. I am partial to those that depict Christ with children. They evoke feelings of reverence, love and peace for me. Feeling that are far to absent in the world.

Do you have a favorite? I would love to see it. Send me a link......

Art by Greg Olsen

Art by Greg Olsen

Art by Liz Lemon Swindle

Art by Del Parson

Art by Del Parson

Art by Simon Dewey

Happy Easter.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Shopping for a Chandelier with the Wild Child

You really have no idea how much fun it is to shop for a new light fixture with the Wild Child. We went to Lowes to replace the chandelier in out kitchen. The old one was plenty nice, just too small for the room.

When we get there, I go over the the oiled bronze, wrought iron and/or brown fixtures since that is what everything else in the house is. The Wild Child tells me she does not like these lights because they look old and broken to her. So I ask her what she does like. She shows me this and others like it:

Though I think this light is gorgeous, it is just not going to work in my kitchen eating space.

There was much debate over three different lights that I liked. I let the Wild Child give her input as to which one she liked and why. This the is the one we chose:

The Wild Child liked it because of the "pineapple." When we get home later that night, I tell the Rocket Scientist that I bought the new light and needed him to install it. Then the Wild Child proceeds to tell her dad, "We bought the one with pineapple on it that looks like a disco ball." Anyone feel like dancing?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Lay me off....

Yesterday there were lay-offs in my husbands company. I can't help but think about those families who now are wondering what is next for them. Up until yesterday morning, I feared a lay-off like any other SAHM. Somehow yesterday morning after many sleepless hours because of an unwanted dream, I came to terms with a lay-off. In fact, I wanted it. It would mean a new adventure. A new start. It wasn't us though. I am afraid that it was another family craving the security a job brings. Funny how life is always throwing you curve balls.

My bloggy friend Nancy, who is almost my neighbor as of a few months back, so eloquently said what I am feeling, though, they are her feelings. We must be drinking the same water.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ohh.....I have issues.

Yes, you read the title right. I have issues. They may be related to not having enough sleep or to how stressful today was, but either way, I feel like trouble.

I, like so many others these days, have gotten sucked into the Facebook world. I tried to resist for a long time, but so much of my family was there, I gave in so I could keep in touch. Before I knew it I had 108 friends. Some of them old boyfriends. This really is no problem...other than on days like today when I am just not right. Let me be clear, I am just looking to torment them, strictly for my amusement. You know, like send them a dozen or so nominations for "most lovable person" or better yet, how about a 250,000 "kidnap'd" request. Trust me, these are people who have no time for such silly applications. I have no ill or romantic feelings for these guys. None. I'm just in that mood that doesn't say much for what kind of person I am. I want to be amused and that would so entertain me.

Ahhh, never mind, I've got a Rocket Scientist here that I can torment instead. I wonder how he feels about watching chick flicks till 4:00AM?

You all have a good night.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Dreams of a Crazy Woman

Thank you friends for all the well wishes. The Rocket Scientist is back at work. The 1st One is back to school. The Wild Child has bronchitis, but is now on the mend and My Son and the Little Jamaican, it is believed by the doctor that, they have allergies. So things are looking up around here.

When the alarm went off this morning the first thought in my head was something left over from a dream. Not a pleasant dream, not really a nightmare either. It was just enough to make me question taking Benadryl before bed. The thoughts going through my head when I awoke were these: "It is so sad that Mick Romney is dead." I need to disclose that I know no one named Mick, not a Romney or other wise. So as I am trying to get conscious I realize this and wonder if something happened to Mitt Romney. Fortunately after scanning the news for 10 minutes, it would appear that the previous presidential hopeful is just fine.

There have been other times that in a dream my Rocket Scientist has done something unsavory and I have awakened very angry with him. Why is that? I know that it was just a dream, though, I am still furious with him. Poor guy, he has to pay for what my mind makes up at night.

Then there is the dream I had when we were still somewhat newly-weds. The Rocket Scientist's mom had passed away in November and his dad decided that a family ski vacation to Mammoth was in order. So in January, we joined his family on said ski trip. We all stayed in a condo in the area. The second level of this condo was a loft that was open to below. There were two queen size beds up there. So the RS and I took one bed and the RS's younger brother and the love of his life took the other. Below in the family room, my FIL slept on the couch and a couple of the RS's older brother's kids slept in sleeping bags on the floor. I am dreaming away one of those nights about having to make it to my best friend's wedding and that I can not get the Rocket Scientist off the mountain so that I can go get ready. I continue to plead my case. As the dream goes on, the RS is now driving me to the wedding and even though there is still time for me to shower, he is ignoring my requests. I become more persistent that I want to take a shower. I begin repeating over and over again, "I want to take a shower! I want to take a shower! I want to take a shower!" In my dream, I get louder and louder as it seems that my demands are falling on deaf ears. It wasn't long after that I was awakened to my husband trying to quiet my yells, my SIL snickering, and my BIL telling me to take a shower then. Fortunately, I woke no one below. To make this story complete, I need to say that, yes, I was mad at the RS all day long that day. Yes, I was allowed a shower, but I was already ticked, though not his fault.

My question to you now is, do others pay for what you dream about?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Looking for the Health Fairy

There is some junk in the air over here. The Rocket Scientist has Walking Pneumonia, the Sea Monkeys are coughing and stuffy and honestly, I am still not right. If there is a Health Fairy for our family, I'm thinking that she's vacationing in Bermuda.

So anyone out there have any home remedies they swear by when they or their kids get sick? What about prevention? You have something that works well? Please share......We are thinking of buying stock in in Kleenex.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Malibu and Weddings....

Did I ever mention that the Rocket Scientist and I lived in California when we were newlyweds? We lived in the Los Angeles area in the sun and smog. There were so many things I loved about living there. The food, the ocean, the sunsets, the palm trees, the public transportation that I knew like the back of my hand, the Central and South American cultures melting into North American culture, and the ocean breeze.
This past weekend, the Rocket Scientist and I had the pleasure of being apart of our dear friend Kevin's wedding celebration. The Rocket Scientist met Kevin while going to school. I can hardly believe it's been more than 13 years since we left Southern California. For all the places we visited while we lived there, we never once made it to Malibu. I assumed it looked like the rest of the area. I should have known better. Our friend Kevin and his lovely bride were married in Malibu over looking the ocean on Saturday. It was beautiful. Some how that word does not seem to be enough to describe the setting or the wedding. The canyons in the area, I am told are reminiscent of Hawaii, bright green hills only to be broken up by the soft blue/grey of the ocean. The groom so happy I thought he would spontaneously combust and enough love in the air to fill the ocean.

Congratulations Kevin and Angelique! May your years be filled with as much beauty and love as your wedding day.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Have you met Lucky?

I'm still not up to par....and I have a flight to catch in the morning. I am wondering to myself, how bad is that going to hurt? Ugh.......I would give you my left toe to breathe out of my right nostril. Really I would. You wouldn't want my toe though, nor could you grant me clear sinuses, so this is a pointless and rather disgusting paragraph. In fact you are now wondering to yourself if I have lost it. Maybe you think my fever got to high or I took the wrong meds........
Anyway, I have some quick things to share and a promise to catch up with your blogs next week. On St. Patrick's Day this week, I woke to find this:

This got me to thinking about leprechauns. My friend Wendy knows a leprechaun named Lucky that manages to sneak into her house every year on St. Patrick's Day and causes some mischief. You know, turn furniture up side down, hang underwear from ceiling fans, leaves green "L's" on her kids foreheads, leaves green pee on the toilet seat; I know I must be forgetting a few things, but you get the point right? Well, each of my children has a certain amount of Irish in them. In fact I am the lone soul without any Irish heritage in the house. Honestly, I look at these photos and I see leprechauns. Yes, they are in their night clothes, if that is what you are asking. It was only 11:00 AM and a lovely 60 F. Some were serving snow as lunch, some were trying to kill "mosquitoes" with a snow shovel and others just in it for the adventure.

Do you have leprechauns? Or is this an isolated case?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Stuck in the Mud....

So that pretty much describes how I feel. Yesterday, I thought I might be having a mid-life crisis, but by noon, I knew it was just Strep. As soon as those antibiotics kick in, I have some funny stuff for you. But today, I'm just going to lay here and pretend the world stopped because I did.

Friday, March 13, 2009

What's a Girl To Wear?

This morning I sent the Little Jamaican in to get herself dressed. This can be quite confusing when you are four years old. Then you add that it has warmed up just enough that all the Sea Monkeys think that Spring has sprung.This causes some serious wardrobe confusion. It is a bit chilly, a bit warm and plenty of mud to tromp through.She had just gotten dressed and I had not done her hair yet.......and she had developed a case of the sillies.I have no idea why, but when she does, it always ends up with a shot of her back side.
I hope you have a wonderfully warm weekend.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Things heard around here today.....

I was calling the clinic today to dispute what was mine and what was my insurance's responsibility when I had to step into my pantry so the poor woman on the other end of the line could hear me. The Sea Monkeys were being extra loud and there was no quieting them. As I stepped into the pantry, I started to tell the woman that I felt like "Old Mother Hubbard" when I realized in my tired and noise induced stupor, I had confused my nursery rhymes. I had to correct myself and tell her I meant thatI felt like the "Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe."

The First One was in the shower when I heard her ask me to come help her. When I got there she asked me, "Will you move the shower runner?" It took me a minute, but I figured out she wanted the shower head adjusted.

The Wild Child talking to her dad on the phone asks if she can wear his shirt to bed because he is out of town. That is one of the Sea Monkeys' very favorite things to do when their dad is away on travel.

When offered chocolate milk today, My Son tells me, "I don't eat this."

I would quote the Little Jamaican today, but it's been nothing but tired sass that doesn't make me smile or entertain me in the slightest.

Counting the seconds till the Rocket Scientist is home. It's just not as much fun without him.

(Sorry about the sap. It happens when I'm tired.)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Questions Answered and an Interview....

First to clear up who "TROY" is: He is the main male character in Disney's High School Musical. Troy's real life name is Zac Efron. He is cute, so I can see why the Wild Child has a thing for him.

Last week, one of my new bloggy friends was kind enough to interview me. She is the Antiques Diva and she is darling. See........

I have been curious about antiques for a long time, but know nothing and I mean nothing about them. I have learned more about antiques and foreign places in the past month than I have managed to gather in the past, um, 29 years of my life. Thank you, my new friend. You are both entertaining and educational.

Interview Follows:

Antiques Diva: If you could LIVE any place in the world where would it be and why?

I would love to live everywhere. Trying to pick one place is like trying to pick your favorite piece of chocolate. Paris, Prague, Oslo, Copenhagen, Alabama, Idaho, Washington DC, New York City, Iceland, New Zealand, South Africa, Puerto Rico, Lake Tahoe, you get the point, right?

Antiques Diva: Describe your perfect day

This makes me think of the movie Miss Congeniality. You know when Stan, the pagent host asks Cheryl Frazier aka: Miss Rhode Island, "Describe your perfect date." To which she replies, "That's a tough one. I'd have to say April 25th, because it's not too hot and not too cold. All you need is a light jacket."

My perfect day would constitute having a house keeper and French pastry chef on staff. That would be followed up by hiring a personal trainer so I could eat the pastry without guilt. A perfect day would also include time sleeping in the sun, playing with my kids and quiet dinner out, alone with the Rocket Scientist.

Antiques Diva: If you could only live with one accessory for the rest of your life, which would it be and why? Only one item!

I am a little embarrassed about how sappy this answer is going to sound, but it is the truth. It would be my wedding ring. We were married 14 years before the Rocket Scientist bought me a ring. In his defense, he had tried to buy one before, but I insisted I wanted a home more than a ring. (We were getting ready to move at the time.) When we were first married we were broke, so he wore his dad's old wedding band and I wore my mom's old wedding band. Anyway, this particular accessory is a reminder that I am the luckiest, most blessed woman on the planet.

Antiques Diva: Why do you blog and which blog/s inspire you most?

I blog for many reasons, but the biggest reason I blog is to take the time to find the joy and humor in my life. Somehow when I start to type, I find the humor in the feathers knee deep all over the bedroom floor or the strength to face neighbors again after this. Another reason is the friends I have made and the ease in keeping in touch. It sort of makes the miles and time disappear.

There are many blogs that inspire me. I love having a glimpse into other people's heads and worlds. It makes me feel normal and unique all at the same time. It is safe to say that if I read your blog, you inspire me. There are many other blogs I do not have listed down the side that inspire me as well. I am thankful for the opportunity you have given me to be a part of your life by putting your thoughts out there to be shared.

Antiques Diva: If you had to choose a flavor of ice cream that most fits your personality, what kind do you think you would you be?

This one is easy, Neapolitan. I am a little bit of everything. Meaning just that. I'm a little bit red neck, a little bit class, a little bit of something else I can't quite put my finger on. I guess I could be Spumoni just as easily.

There are a few of you out there I would love to interview, but I will let you volunteer. So here are the rules:

1. Leave me a comment on the “Interview Me” blog. (Meaning this one.)

2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.

3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions. Be sure you link back to the original post.

4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.

5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.