Thursday, December 31, 2009

Good-Bye 2009

Over the past year:
Steve has worked his bum off. He stopped doing musicals, due to my insistence, and has joined a choir that he LOVES and does well in.
Cameron has gone through all the ups and downs of getting his ADHD under control. We may actually have the winning combination right now! :) He's also started to grow as a young man and is a VERY helpful older brother.
Jacob went from a squishy ball of goo to a walking, talking little boy. If you were to ask him who he was in a picture, he'd tell you "bebe," but would deny being the baby if you pointed to him and asked. (In fact, just a few minutes ago, he grabbed my arm, and chanted over and over, "SIPPY! SIPPY!! SIPPY!!!!" I can't believe how big he has grown over the last year!)
And me? I've just done what I do. I have gained a few bad habits over the last little bit, and resolve (which I RARELY do...) to stop swearing. (Yes, I swear, not a LOT and not really bad, but enough that it's beginning to bug me....I promise, I never swore until I had kids.....) I also hope to get in better shape (healthy, not necessarily losing weight, but that would be nice too...)
Happy new year, may it be filled with much happiness!

Monday, December 28, 2009

I Win the Coolest Mommy Award

It's only for a week, but he's SO excited about it! :D
Update: (Thursday, 31 Dec)
Cameron doesn't have his cool mohawk anymore. I warned him when we did it that he had to be a good boy and obey me, or it would disappear. Yesterday he ate candy for breakfast and I told him, "You get one more chance. Don't eat candy or sweets for breakfast or you will lose your mohawk."
This morning he confessed to eating candy for breakfast and the mohawk was buzzed off. :(

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

More Christmas Memories

Christmas day was always fun. We would usually wake up VERY early, after getting very LITTLE sleep and would peek to see what Santa brought us. He didn't usually wrap the presents, just set them out with our stockings next to the gift. Mom and Dad told us that if we were quiet, and didn't wake them up, we were okay to just play with those gifts. The rule was that we couldn't wake them up until after 8:00. Sometimes we took that time VERY seriously, other times we just played and didn't bother.
After Mom and Dad woke up, we'd open the gifts. We were to tell whoever gave us the gift "thank you" and then we were good.
After the gifts were opened, Mom would set about to make us a big breakfast. Mom didn't make us breakfasts (unless we were camping or it was a special day) so we were VERY excited to get this big meal. We'd have pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, juice, milk...the whole thing. Mom told us that she made us breakfast because when she woke up on Christmas morning, she and her siblings would gorge themselves on the candy they got in their stockings, and would get sick. She didn't want us getting sick, so she made us breakfast.
After breakfast, we'd just play with our new things, start getting cleaned up for the day and would just enjoy our morning at home. Mom's parents would usually come over to see us, and chat for a while. (I believe they visited every local family on Christmas day.....) We would show them our gifts and would talk to them about what they got. It was very fun.
Later in the afternoon, we'd pack our things up, only taking ONE gift per child, and would go to Dad's parents' house for dinner. It was fun there too. Grandma and Grandpa lived in another small house, but it was always filled with people and fun smells and sounds. I LOVED seeing my grandma's tree. It was big and VERY full. She always put different flavored candy canes on her tree, and would let us pick which ever candy cane we wanted. I always liked the strawberry ones, but my brothers loved the blueberry or bubble gum flavors.
After a filling dinner (yet again, turkey, salads, potatoes, pies...) we'd open presents. My aunts and uncles would tell me about all the fun things Santa brought them, and I'd share the same. It was such fun.
That night, we'd go home, happy and filled with food. I'd always try to remind myself that Christmas wasn't all about the presents or the time spent with family. I'd try to remind myself, that many years ago, a baby was born. And because of this baby, we are all VERY blessed and we can, once again, return to our Father in Heaven.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Memories

For the last month or so, I've been feeling a bit nostalgic for Christmases past.
Things haven't been the same for a very long time, but I thought I'd put down my memories into words so that I can continue to remember those happy Christmases from when I was younger.
My whole life, I've lived in the same town as both sets of my grandparents. Because of this, we were blessed to have double the holidays. I also knew all but one set of my great-grandparents. Holidays were HUGE! None were bigger than our annual Christmas Eve celebration.
Christmas Eve started pretty early, around 5:00 in the evening. We'd go visit my mom's parents. Grandma would have a huge spread of turkey, ham, jello salads, rolls, veggies....lots and lots of food. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a teeny, tiny house (which has always amazed me, because they raised 12 children in that teeny little house.) We would crowd as many of the local aunts, uncles and cousins that we could. Grandma would have us go downstairs to open our present from her and Grandpa, and often, we'd open a present from the family who had our family. (It was easier for one family to buy for another rather than everyone buy for EVERYONE in the family....) We'd always sit around and laugh. And for a special treat, the little kids would often gather around Grandpa's train display that would run around his Christmas tree. It was a magical time.
After visiting my mom's parents, we'd visit our great-grandparents. First was Grandma and Grandpa W. They had a house-full as well, and their house was even SMALLER than my other grandparents' house. We'd squeeze in the whole family and kids would sit UNDER the table to eat. And eat we DID! Grandma W would have a HUGE spread of everything: turkey, mashed potatoes, salads, jello, was FABULOUS! Then after we'd filled our bellies, we'd gather in the small room that held their tree (where I would often sit and just stare at the pretty lights and just sit and think about what Christmas REALLY meant. Even now, thinking about it, I'm feeling peaceful and happy.) Grandpa would pull out the gifts and we'd tear into them. It was always fun!
After seeing Grandma and Grandpa W, we'd head around the corner and down the street to Grandma H's. Grandpa died when I was very young, so I don't have many memories of him, but I remember going to Grandma's house. Her house is a blur of purples and happy scents in my mind. (Mingled with a little scent of moth balls....not so yummy...) It never failed, but we'd always show up at her house just a LITTLE too late. Every year one of Santa's elves would show up with a box filled with bags and bags of goodies for all of the great-grands. Those bags would have peanuts, hard candies, apples and oranges in them. The smell of the brown paper bag would mix with the other scents, and would make me happy. We'd sit and talk at Grandma's house for a while, the whole time she'd be offering food to us, to which we'd politely decline... It seems like there was always an argument of some sort at this house (the H's are NOTORIOUS for arguing....) And shortly after having Grandma open our gift, we'd head out.
After leaving Grandma's we'd drive around town looking at the twinkling lights. The radio would play those beautiful Christmas songs, and we would sing along. We would get home VERY late, and I would try my hardest to fall asleep so Santa could come, but I never managed to fall asleep easily. I still have problems falling asleep easily on Christmas Eve.
Those were fun nights, very busy, but fun. I miss those busy grandparents have died (for the most part....only my mom's dad is still with us...) and even then, the traditions have changed. I find myself wanting to drive to those houses just so it can feel as magical as it did when I was younger. I know it can never be the same, but I still find those thoughts running through my mind this time of year.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Holiday Plans

I can't believe that Christmas is THIS week! The time just FLEW by. Seriously, wasn't it just July?
This week is kind of a busy week for my little family, but MOST of the plans should be fun.
Today our big plan is to go to the District Health office and get the H1N1 vaccination. I've been waiting for my boys to not be so sick when I take them to get it. I think once we're all vaccinated it will be a HUGE weight lifted off of my back. I'm so paranoid that any little cough or fever will blow up into this HUGE flu pandemic. (Yes, I'm crazy...)
Tomorrow Cameron is getting some dental work done. It's going to be done in a surgical setting, since the boy is SO anxious about anything going in his mouth. Hopefully they'll take care of this poor boy's pain and make him a little bit better!
Wednesday is my big baking day for the week. Cameron has his last day of school and his Christmas program (which I think they call a Winter Festival...can't offend anyone...) I'll go and watch his program, check him out of school early (LOVE that part of the whole thing...) and then we'll come home and make LOTS of Christmas cookies and treats. We heard through the grapevine that Santa wants snickerdoodles this year, so we'll be making the dough for those and some other fun cookies.
Thursday is the day we're spending with Steve's family. I'm actually VERY excited about this. Steve isn't AS excited as I am. We're going to leave in the morning, pick up Steve's parents and drive to spend the day at Steve's brother's house.
I'm excited about this, because I DO enjoy talking with my in-laws, and I know my boys just LOVE grandpa. He is their absolute FAVORITE! Cameron keeps asking when we get to see them, and when I tell him how soon it is he is practically GIDDY! I love it when my boys get this way!
We'll be having a good day laughing and talking and eating pizza. (Yes, pizza is the family tradition on Christmas Eve. I don't remember the whole story, but it started when Steve and his brother were in their teens. I don't *get* it, but I don't try and push MY traditions in on them either.) After dinner, we'll be taking Steve's parents home and HOPEFULLY we'll get home before it's too dark. We hope to see some of the fancier light displays and make some Christmas cookies.
Friday....The BIG day! We're going to be pretty laid back on Christmas, at least, that's my PLAN! I always make a big breakfast on Christmas (because that's what MY mom did...and we always enjoyed that tradition.) We'll stay home so the boys can play with their new things for a while, then we'll go to my parents' house and hopefully get to talk to my little brother (he comes home from his mission next summer!!) Then we'll have a family dinner and then the BIG family get-together that evening with my grandpa and my aunts and uncles and cousins. I'm sure the phone will be ringing off the hook with family who want to talk to grandpa and wish him a Merry Christmas.
Thankfully, my plans aren't TOO involved, and I'm planning on just relaxing and enjoying my week.
Christmas to me isn't about the stress of plans, it's about going with the flow, and enjoying each activity while you have it. It's about spending time with family and making lots of fun family memories together.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Experiment Update

So far, Cameron is a much better behaved child. He was a little scared by the lack of gifts, but once he was told that they were taken away because he's been misbehaving and has been selfish, he changed his tune. He knows that the gifts will return once he has proved that he can be less selfish and better behaved.
The tree looks bare, but the lessons being learned are WELL worth it!

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Christmas Experiment

This year, we are VERY blessed. We were able to put many presents underneath our tree this year. It is humbling to have SO much.
We decided that since we have enough for our needs, we'd like to help others out, in the same way we've been helped out in the past. We went to the store on Saturday (how crazy are WE?! It was insane!!) and bought some toys for a family that we know will not be getting anything for Christmas this year. When we brought the gifts in the house to be wrapped, Cameron began crying. He was upset because he wanted the toys. They were JUST what he wanted. When I told him that these toys were for kids who wouldn't have a Christmas, he just cried that he wanted them even more.
I was in SHOCK!
I did NOT raise him to be such a selfish child. I promise.
Not only was he wanting these particular toys, but he also has been BEGGING for things when we go to the store. When he wrote his Santa letter, he kept thinking of MORE things that he wanted to ask Santa for.
I just realized how selfish and SPOILED he really is. It needs to be stopped NOW!
After thinking about it, and conferring with a parenting expert (thanks, Mom), we've come up with a solution. Not a nice solution, but one that I HOPE will open the eyes of one selfish little boy. We are taking ALL but one present of his from underneath the tree. We'll only leave him and Jake ONE present. We will then inform Cameron that since he has SO much, and is SO blessed, we decided to donate his Christmas to kids who need it. (Really, we're just trying to get a reaction, we won't be giving his things away, unless he NEEDS them taken away...) I may have a VERY sad boy on my hands tomorrow, but something drastic needs to happen.

When the House is Quiet...

...there's usually a good reason.
Glad it was THIS one and not a *disaster* reason.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Weather Outside is Frightful....

So we bundle up anytime we leave the house.
Such cute little boys! <3

Song of My Life

Lately, I've been depressed and I've posted a few frustrating posts. I apologize. When I think of my *problems* this song pops into my head. LOVE it!

Sounds Like Life to Me by Darryl Worley

Got a call last night from an old friend’s wife
Said I hate to bother you
Johnny Ray fell off the wagon
He’s been gone all afternoon
I know my buddy so I drove to Skully’s
And found him at the bar
I say hey man, what’s going on
He said I don’t know where to start

Sarah’s old car’s about to fall apart
And the washer quit last week
We had to put momma in the nursing home
And the baby’s cutting teeth
I didn’t get much work this week
And I got bills to pay
I said I know this ain’t what you wanna hear
But it’s what I’m gonna say

Sounds like life to me it ain’t no fantasy
It’s just a common case of everyday reality
Man I know it’s tough but you gotta suck it up
To hear you talk you’re caught up in some tragedy
It sounds like life to me

Well his face turned red and he shook his head
He said you don’t understand
Three kids and a wife depend on me
And I’m just one man
To top it off I just found out
That Sarah’s 2 months late
I said hey bartender set us up a round
We need to celebrate

Sounds like life to me plain old destiny
Yeah the only thing for certain is uncertainty
You gotta hold on tight just enjoy the ride
Get used to all this unpredictability
Sounds like life

Man I know its tough but you gotta suck it up
To hear you talk you’re caught up in some tragedy
Sounds like life to me
Sounds like life

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

That's IT!! I QUIT!!

Being a mommy this week is SERIOUSLY trying my patience.
Today's adventure: going to the dentist, waiting for a phone call, and taking a nativity set to church.
Sounds easy enough, right?
Going to the dentist: Have I ever, EVER, mentioned Cameron's constant anxiety? He asks so many questions when he hears that he's going to a doctor of ANY sort. Thankfully, he has an amazing orthodontist who has worked VERY hard to calm some of his doctor/dentist related anxieties.
Today I checked the boy out of school, and off we went. Of course, the dentist appointment HAD to be in the middle of Cam's lunch, but his teacher was great and got him a styrofoam tray to take his lunch with us. On the way to the dentist's office, I told him to eat as quickly as he could, and thankfully, he was hungry enough that he ate the main part.
At the dentist's office I had paper after paper to sign, and of course, the machines that the secretaries work with ARE NOT working when I need them to. Cameron got called back by the hygienist before I could even get my name signed. He was a little anxious, but went back fine enough.
After all the new forms were signed, I went back to the room with Jake. Cam was in the process of getting x-rays, and wouldn't you know it, the BIG film is making him they have to do a smaller one. After 10 minutes, he's finished and we can come in and sit next to him. I do have to say, the cleaning went SO well. Cam only gagged a few times, and tears weren't shed.
Next part, trying to remove one loose tooth, and give the kid a shot to numb the main tooth that they need to give a "min-root canal" to. THAT did NOT happen. Instead, after wrestling with the boy for a while, they decided that it would be WAY easier to take care of it when he's the hospital. NIIIIIIIIICE!!
Going to the dentist: check....sorta.
Waiting for a phone call: So I got a letter telling me that I needed to call for an interview. Instead of having someone at the ready INSTANTLY when I call, they want me to leave my name and phone number. They will call me back "sometime today." If they can't get ahold of me the first time they will call ONCE more. If they get my voicemail, I will be instructed to call them back.
Okay, fine.
I call early in the morning, about a half hour after they opened up the phone lines. I leave my message and wait.
I manage to get the boys ready, send Cameron off to school, and even sneak in a haircut for the baby. All is well....until I decide to leave the phone out of reach and go upstairs to fix the new hair style.
They called...and I picked up the phone JUST as it flipped over to voicemail.
SO, I need to call them back. BUT it took them 2 hours to return the first call. I figured I'd call them after the trip to the dentist, since I knew I would be home.
The instant I walk in the door from returning from the dentist's office, I call and leave another message. Then I grab the phone, put it RIGHT next to me on the couch, and settle in for the wait.
I wait and wait....
I figure it's going to be a while, so I even call and cancel Cameron's therapy for this afternoon. I settle in and wait some more....
FOUR HOURS LATER, and in the middle of when Cam was SUPPOSED to be in therapy, I get the call. I listen to the guy talk, basically mumble a yes or no and then it was over 15 minutes after it started.
Waiting for the phone call: check.
Taking the Nativity set to the church: I volunteered to take my little nativity set to the church for a decoration for our ward party tomorrow night. They weren't going to start decorating until 6:30. It's already been a long day, I'm tired, the boys are grumpy and I would MUCH rather stay home, but I don't want to say I'll do something and then not do it....
I gather up my poor nativity set (that has been thrown and chipped and "loved" to death this year.....thanks, Jake....) and put it in a grocery bag, and turn around to get my coat and Jake's coat....
*shake shake shake....CRASH!*
Oh, NO......
Jake has just shaken the HECK out of my poor nativity set. The pieces went flying and my angel, who SHOULD fly well, since he has wings, is now separated from his wings.
I am SO tired, SO burned out, and SO tired of my stuff being ruined....I acted VERY VERY poorly.....
At this point, I was done. Done doing the things I am *supposed* to do. Done trying to be nice when I don't feel like it. Done being the mama. I am DONE!
I search the house for super glue (I KNOW I bought some, but do you THINK I could find it?) and decided that they don't NEED the angel, but my boys DO need to know that they are more important than my things. I calm down, gather things up, bundle up the boys and head out.
UGH! Not only that, but they're STANDING in front of THEIR garage to WATCH me try to get out. Are you kidding me?? SERIOUSLY!? Move your freakin' truck, before I go all Fried Green Tomatoes on it!! Nope, nothing.
I made a 50-point turn and manage to get out, while being watched by my inconsiderate neighbors....get the nativity set to the church. As I'm putting my poor offering on the stage for later, I pull out one of my wise men (Jake's favorites to play with....) and notice he's HAND-LESS! Are you kidding?? Really!??!
The members of the committee are grateful that I brought my set, and thank me over and over....then I grab the boys and leave for home.
I'm done. Bedtime can be early for tonight, right?
Taking the nativity set to the church: to round up the hand for my wise man and find my super glue.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Ever Wonder Where Your Life Went?

I have weeks where I feel like I'm going a million-bazillion miles an hour, then there are weeks that seem to DRAG by. This week is the light-year moving kind.
It all started with a, singular, chipmunk cheek. Cameron came home from church sporting a poofy left cheek. The last time his face got swollen like that was when he had an abscessed tooth. I knew that the next day would be spent calling and visiting the dentist.
Sure enough, after an x-ray (where I got to push the button, and was told I was a PRO) we decided that it was an infection and that a loose tooth and very large cavity was probably the culprit. He was immediately prescribed antibiotics and we have an appointment to get the teeth fixed tomorrow.
Today was crazier....I took my mom and uncle to the airport to greet my cousin who was coming home from his mission. When we got to the airport, we thought maybe his flight got in early. The flight board said it was modified to 11:55 instead of I was confused. Eventually someone came over the loud-speaker to inform us that their flight had been delayed and wouldn't arrive until 1:15. Well, I was hungry, so was my mom and grandpa (Grandpa came with my aunt....mommy to the missionary), so we went to lunch away from the airport.
We went back to the airport at 1:10 to find that the plane landed at 1:06! LIARS!! :P
So we left there and I went to drop off a family address list to my great aunt Pearl who is THE funniest lady I've EVER known. Love her....anyway, she HAD to give my mom a tour of her apartment, including the "museum room."
After that, I had to pick up some music for a funeral I'll be singing at on Saturday, then we were off to take my mom and uncle home. I was going to leave Jake with my mom because she spilled his chocolate milk on his coat and wanted to wash it. I also hoped that he *might* take a nap while I went to take Cameron to therapy. (Didn't happen, but it was a GOOD hope...)
I hurried back to the opposite side of town to get Cameron, to take him to speech. After dropping him off, I went to the boys' pediatrician to pick up some prescriptions for Cameron, then I was off to the pharmacy.
The pharmacy I usually go to did NOT have one of the meds, and wouldn't have it until next Thursday. WHAT good does that do me NOW!? I need those meds, our lives are chaos without THOSE meds....Fine, whatever. I grabbed the script and went to another pharmacy, and THANKFULLY they had it in stock, but it would take 25 minutes to fill. That was okay, by this time Cameron was finished with therapy, and I needed to pick him up. I quickly drove to the building, and sat down. BIG mistake, I instantly fell asleep. IN THE WAITING ROOM! (Thankfully, it wasn't a DEEP sleep, and my head-bobbing and hand un-clasping woke me up....several times....) Soon Cameron was ready to go, and we were off to pick UP the prescriptions.
By the time we had everything and headed back to get Jacob, it was 4:30. As soon as I walked in the door, my mom asked if I would pick up some things at my aunt's house and run one errand for her. *sigh* No biggie, she did errands for me ALL the time when I was growing up, it's only fair that I try to help her out when I can, right?
I went to my aunt's house, had a good chat with her (I LOVE my aunt....can I say that?) and hurried to drop off a check. As soon as that was done, it was 5:15, and I was POOPED!
I went back to get the boys, bundle them up, (because it was SO freakin' cold outside, did I mention that?? The whole day I think our high temperature was 13....MAYBE...) then head home to make a quick dinner of hot dogs, chips, and ravioli.
After dinner was over, we had to take Cameron to the church for scouts and I needed to put my visiting teaching numbers in the computer (the ONE thing I MUST do in a timely manner with this the numbers as soon as I can....) After I kicked one of the ward clerks off the computer (he was such a good sport about it too), I imputed the numbers, grabbed Jake and headed home. I was able to sit and do absolutely NOTHING of importance for 30 minutes. Thirty minutes of bliss.
Then I headed back to the church to grab Cameron and be DONE with the day.....but I couldn't find him. I looked in the room they usually meet in, and no one was there. I heard lots of loud noises in the gym, but it was the other ward's primary activity.....where WAS my Cameron?
I figured that maybe they did something different and I missed them dropping him off at home. (I was SO glad I left the front door unlocked....) so I headed home, HOPING to find Cameron. Jake was NOT happy to be leaving the church without his brother, he sobbed "Mammon!!! MAAAAAAMMMMMONNNN!!!!" I told him that Cameron was probably home, and we needed to check, that seemed to calm him down a little....
At home, no one was there. There were no calls from the leaders, and I began to worry.
Now, usually I don't worry about him. His leaders are WONDERFUL and usually keep me up to date with their activities, and if I forget or get busy they bring him home. Seriously, those ladies are AMAZING!! So I thought, 'Well, maybe they're back at the church. I'll go check.'
Back to the church I go, no one. No lights, no cars that I recognize.....nada.
I'm beginning to worry. How could this crazy day get worse? An over-tired mama, with a stinky baby in the backseat, missing her little "special" scout....and the over-active imagination.
I admit, I sat in my van and sobbed. I missed my "Mammon" too.
I prayed for peace, and soon I decided to go back to the church for one last check, then I'd wait at home. Every car I passed on the way I looked at closely. After checking out the church, I noticed a car that came from the church turning on my street. I followed quickly, and sure enough, it was his leader dropping him off.
The long day was finally over.....until tomorrow.
Really, why don't I get paid for doing this job?? It's SO hard and SO time-consuming! UGH! :P

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Special Primary

Tonight I went to see the Special Primary's Christmas Program. It was SO cute!
My uncle is a member of the Special Primary, and he asked us if we'd go to see it. He was thrilled this year because he didn't have a speaking part, he just played the bells in the bell-choir.
I noticed that despite the age difference, special primary is VERY much like children-under-12-primary. There are the ones who like to speak VERY loudly into the microphone to see everyone jump. There are the ones who are antsy and have to stand and wave to everyone. There are the over-zealous singers. There are the ones who play with their costumes so that they can't see. You have the shy ones, and the out-going ones. The singing is cute and the program is ALWAYS something that makes ME cry.
While we were sitting in that chapel, I looked over to my sweet Cameron and had a thought pop into my head. I wonder if years from now I'll have to take HIM to Special Primary and we'll be involved with them. I know Cameron isn't really *special* but in a lot of ways he IS. I don't know what the future will bring, but I do know that those special "kids" are definitely some of the choicest people I've ever met and if Cameron is found among them, he'll be VERY blessed.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009


Now that our home is decorated for Christmas, I'm finding it difficult to keep a certain 18 month old child out of the pretty decorations.
The first night we had our nativity set out, Jake pointed to the pieces. He found a few that he liked and called our little lambs "doggies." I corrected him saying they were sheep, and he instantly repeated "sheep." Then I told him, "Those are pretties, don't touch, just look." Instantly we had a new word for the fun toys mom had set up. He poked all the little kings and said, "pwetty! PWETTY!!" The "pwetties" haven't been safe since.
He's also taken to throwing things INTO the tree, just to see what happens, and he loves grabbing the ornaments on the bottom of the tree and throwing them. (Thankfully, the hooks have been tightened and he can't pull them ALL off anymore...but for a few days it was NOT fun!)
Today, I realized that he's only little once, and it isn't SUCH a big deal that he likes to play with my nativity set, so I just let him play with long as he doesn't throw them and break them. (They're not TOO breakable, but I'm sure Jake would find a way if he could...)
Tonight his favorite was the Baby Jesus. I told him, "Jake, that's the Baby Jesus. Can you give Baby Jesus a kiss?"
His response, a slobbery wet one, repeating, "Jesus!" And then a quick toss of the Baby Jesus on the floor.
Oh, joy!

Friday, November 27, 2009


I'm COMPLETELY done with my Christmas shopping. Oh, I know there is ONE more thing that I really want to get, but even without it, I can still have a VERY happy Christmas, and so will my boys....all three of them! :)

Black Friday....First Time in LINES!

I have been a scrooge in the past. I would avoid leaving my house on the Friday after Thanksgiving because it was Black Friday. It's because I'm a wimp, and I don't like big crowds. HATE them.
Then a few years ago, I found an item on a Black Friday ad that I just *HAD* to have! I woke up early, and went to Walmart. (Yes, the store that is open 24 hours a day.) All I had to do was walk INSIDE the nice, warm store, find my item (shrink-wrapped for my protection) and wait until the appointed hour of 5:00 am. Poof, magic, I was in and out of the check-out VERY fast, and home before 5:30.
I have NOT attempted to brave a Black Friday since.
I did find that I quite enjoyed the rush I felt getting my Christmas gifts at AMAZING prices, but I also realized that I quite value and enjoy my sleep.
This year, there is a special store that had their first door-busters at midnight. I ALSO found that they had the EXACT toy that I wanted to get my boys for Christmas. I also found that they were a FANTASTIC deal!!
I HAD to have the toys.
For those toys, I was willing to brave the wait in line.
I didn't realize that in order to get in and out quickly I should have waited in line in front of that store at 6:00 pm. No, seriously, there were people lined up THAT early!
Instead I took Steve's car and left home at 11:20...arriving AT the store at 11:30. I went to get in, that line ran from the front door, all the way down the parking lot to the main road, then turned toward the fast food restaurant at the opposite corner of the parking lot, then turned yet again toward a super-cool pet store. I had to wait in the MIDDLE of the parking lot. I put on my gloves, and waited. People came and waited in line behind me. I don't think I will ever see these women again, but we bonded. We bonded in that "we-stood-in-line-for-over-an-hour-in-the-freezing-cold-discussed-our-hopeful-purchases-and-helped-keep-the-mood-light-for-each-other" kind of way. Keeping a positive attitude while around these women was easy. For that, I'm grateful, because things could have turned ugly, fast.
At midnight we heard whooping and cheering at the front of the line, the doors were opened. The people who paid their dues by waiting for hours and hours were now INSIDE, the rest of us shuffled toward the front of the line at a snail's pace.
The lady who was next to me said, "We'll probably get up to the front, they'll cut us off and say, 'You can't come in.'" I plugged my ears and did the universal-sign for "I'm not hearing this, so you can't jinx me!"
After a half hour of walking slowly to the open doors, we were VERY close to the front of the line. We could see the doors and the employees who were guarding the sacred line, asking for anyone to turn in any "butt-ers." (To which we joked, "Who wants rolls?" Yes, it was dumb, but remember, we were freezing our brains off, and it was after midnight....brains turn OFF at midnight!) We joked about the toys we were getting and if the prices were REALLY worth standing out in the cold for. One lady said that if the toys we wanted were sold out that we could always tell the kids, "Sorry, but Santa lost the toys in the snow, watch for it to melt. You'll probably find it in the spring."
Soon, I was within 8 people of being IN the doors and IN the heated building. SO close! The spiky-haired-guard-of-an-employee stopped us and said that we'd have to wait at LEAST 20 minutes for the check-out line to get smaller. (DANG that jinx didn't work...) We could see the end of the check-out was RIGHT by the front door. (No joke!) So we talked and stuck our hands and cold toes INSIDE the doors where the heat was blowing.
One woman, who was visiting her daughters from Washington, was freezing. She's not used to these cold Idaho nights, so I said, "If you promise to be good, I'll let you stand by me." (I was RIGHT at the door, I could feel, smell and TASTE the heat. She came up and said how cold her fingers were, I said that I could warm them up for her, she looked skeptical, but I really meant it. I held this poor woman's hand to warm up her fingers, and we laughed and giggled about how I was warm because I have extra padding (while I patted my belly and thighs.)
After a while of waiting AT the door, we slowly sneaked inside the front entrance, and waited between the front doors. It was nice and warm. Soon, we FILLED that little front room with lots of people began filling the room, we checked our watches. It had been 20 minutes. Some people began complaining, and I reminded them that the spiky-guard had said at LEAST 20 minutes....(some said it was giving her the benefit of the doubt...)
After another 20 minutes of waiting, people began to get impatient. And at the moment that things could have gone bad, who came to save us? Spiky-haired-guard-lady! She said she could let in 15!! I was one of the few chosen!!
Getting in was easy compared to FINDING things. It's not like they put the big sale items where you can find them, get in line and check out, they have to HIDE everything. I grabbed an employee quickly and she showed me where the toys I had been searching for were, then I decided to check on another toy that Cameron wanted. I'd found a good deal for THAT toy online, but it was the SAME price in the store, so I grabbed that as well. (Although, now that I'm home and checking the online deals, it's cheaper. But with the shipping, it really was less expensive to buy it in the store.) I also wanted something FUN for Jake, since I got something for Cameron, so I found another FUN toy and got in the check-out line, which started where I had entered the store.
An hour later, I was around the store and in a check-out line. Just as I was checking out, someone found a hidden stash of the Zhu-Zhu pets. PANDEMONIUM!! I watched grown women RUN to get these toys. I quickly paid for my stuff and LEFT!
As I was walking to Steve's car, which I had parked on the OPPOSITE side of the parking lot, I looked at the line, it was now visible from the front door. It only went halfway down the parking lot instead of all the way around it. I was happy to be out of there and WITH the things I had gone in for. I was leaving the store at 2:00 am, bag in hand, feet aching, but with a smile on my face.
Was it worth it? We'll find out on Christmas morning.
Oh, and honey, I parked the car right up front. I thought you'd like that. Can someone please find my brain now?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thankful November

Living Prophet
I'm grateful that Heavenly Father has not closed the heavens to the world. He does speak to men through his living prophets. I am SO grateful for the knowledge I have that our prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, communicates with Heavenly Father and passes His words to us.
I am also grateful for the other leaders and "prophets, seers, and revelators." How blessed we are to hear their words twice a year at General Conference. We are also blessed to have their words written down for us to read in the May and November Ensigns.
I cannot express my love for these men and the things they share with us. My heart is so full of gratitude.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thankful November

Disposable Diapers
SOOOOOOO glad they invented these puppies. I go through a lot in a week. (Well, not as many as I used to when Jake was smaller....) I'm glad that if we have a messy diaper I can just wrap it up on itself and just toss it in the garbage. I'm EVER so grateful for these when it comes to potty training because I have a small glimpse into life before disposables.
Swishing around a pootie diaper in the toilet is NOT something I ever want to experience. Although, I have heard that washing dirty diapers in the toilet made hands softer....(personally, I think it's something that women said to keep their sanity.)
I'm just glad that I don't have to deal with that. Yay for the disposable diaper!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thankful November

Our lives are SO enriched by technology. Instead of saying WHY I'm grateful, I think I'm just going to list those things I'm really grateful that we have.
Cell phones
VCR/DVD players
Digital Cameras
Game systems
Newer cars
iPods/MP3 players
Message boards
Online shopping
SO many things....aren't we just SO blessed?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thankful November

I'm grateful for this day and age when we have cars to take us places. I was doing errands on Saturday (fun ones, not the boring ones) and I filled my van with gas and reset the miles. By the time I got home, after my 4 hour break, I had logged 20 miles. If we didn't have cars and I would have had to walk that, I don't know if I would have made it; not to mention dragging two little, cranky, boys around.
On days like yesterday, when it snowed several inches, I'm grateful for cars more than usual. I'm glad that I can climb into the car OUT of the cold and that I will get to my destination in relative warmth.
I'm also grateful that in my family we have two vehicles to get us places. When Steve and I were first married we didn't even HAVE a car, now we have two, and we don't have to rearrange our schedules to get the other to the places they need to go. It's SO SO SO nice to have more than one car in our house.
I'm grateful for cars because they make our lives SO much easier and more comfortable. We truly are BLESSED!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thankful November

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I'm grateful for food. I am VERY VERY thankful to live in a place where I can just make a quick run to the store if I ever run out of any food. We have SUCH an abundance of food, and I am grateful that we aren't starving and that my kids are well-fed.
On Thanksgiving, I'll be VERY thankful for a fat turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes smothered in mini-marshmallows, sweet pickles, cheese stuffed celery, rolls, jello and pies with "plop." :)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Thankful November

Heated Home
I'm very grateful, especially this time of year, for a warm home. My kids are warm, my house is warm and I am warm. I'm SO grateful for that.
I'm also grateful that I have a roof over my head and that it is a comfortable place for my family to live. We are so blessed to live in this part of the world where our homes are nice, spacious and comfortable. My little brother is on his mission right now in the Philippines, he is constantly telling me about how bad the living conditions are there. In fact, the area he's at right now, he says, smells like a dump...literally.
I'm SO glad that I live where I don't have to smell my sewage and my family is safe and sound.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thankful November

Not a big thing, but I'm grateful for wax, and it's wonderful properties. I'm particularly fond of wax's ability to remove unwanted hair.
Normally, I feel rather sasquatch-y, and the other day a friend waxed my eyebrows (and a few other parts of my face...) and I feel like I new woman! I'm SO grateful for this little thing that can help me feel a little prettier, and a little bit better about myself.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thankful November

I've got a group of friends who have encouraged me to read my scriptures daily. This is something I've struggled with for years. Usually, I get motivated, and start out gung-ho, but then lose interest half-way through. Since my friends are doing it too, I'm a little more motivated this time and I'm doing well. Thanks to this website, it's easy and SO fun.
I love the stories that they tell us, and knowing that Heavenly Father has preserved these words for our day and age is something that is humbling. It's so important, and I am grateful to have them in my life.
I learn new things everytime I read them. Someone once told me that if it was something that is IN the scriptures (particularly the Book of Mormon) then there is something there for us to learn. Ancient prophets spent lots of time, effort, and sometimes even gave their lives for those words. Shouldn't it be that important to us?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thankful November

Washer and Dryer
I am very grateful to have a washer and dryer IN my home. For the first 4 years of my marriage we lived in apartments that did not have the hook-ups and I had to take my laundry somewhere else to be washed. It was hard and not fun.
Once we found this apartment had the hook-ups inside of them, we were SO excited. No more packing our laundry out of the home....we could do it AT home.
I am also grateful for the machines themselves. I am glad that we don't have to wash our clothes by hand.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Thankful November

Cameron has been playing on the VIP soccer league, and his final "game" was last night. I was really impressed with how much he's improved in the last 5 weeks. The first week he had NO idea what was going on, but he enjoyed playing with the ball and other kids. This week, he followed directions VERY well, and even did some amazing head bumps. SERIOUSLY!! He loved it, and played very well. I know he wouldn't have done as well, without the young kids who volunteered to work with these special little kids.
The kids who helped out, in most cases, weren't much older than the kids playing. They were only 12 or 13, but they were SO patient and caring. I am SO grateful to these young kids who spent their Monday nights helping out. These "helpers" were JUST fabulous, but I am also grateful for the coaches who volunteered to put the league together. It was a fun month and I know that I will always feel a special place in my heart for these amazing people who gave up some time for my little boy's happiness!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Thankful November

I feel so grateful for the talents I have. They're not much, but I do appreciate them in my life.
I'm grateful for the talent I have with music. I used to love playing the piano for therapeutic reasons, but since I don't have a piano in my home, I can't really do that. But when I can play a piano, I am grateful for those hours and years of hard work.
I'm grateful for my talent with singing. I guess I've always just taken for granted the fact that I can pretty much pick up a melody or even, with a little work, the alto line of a song. I love singing and my extent with that talent is singing in my ward and stake choirs. I love to sing, but not so much that I will sing a solo. I must do it in a group....but it is something I really enjoy and I'm grateful for.
I'm grateful for the talent of friendship in my life. I've found it easy to make friends and I'm grateful that I can do that.
There are more, but I do appreciate the talents I've been blessed with and that those around me have been blessed with.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Thankful November

Calm and Peace
I'm grateful for those rare times when I'm not stressing or worrying about something, but when I feel content and at peace with my life. (The last few weeks have been one of those rare times.)
I don't quite know how to explain the serenity I've been feeling. I know the world is in turmoil, and that there are many who are struggling, but for the last few weeks I've felt peace in my life.
In all my married life, I've never really felt like I was living in my "home." I've lived in many apartments that keep me out of the elements, but never really felt like I've been "home" since my parents lived in their previous house. (Yeah, I didn't even feel like I was "home" in their new house....) It's been a long time coming, but right now, I feel like I've got stability and a house that feels like a "home."
I even feel peace that if I never get pregnant again, that I will be okay. I feel calm with the idea that I may only ever have these two little boys in my life. I never felt that peace anytime after I'd had Cameron. Right now, I'm okay getting pregnant, or not. I feel completely content with my life as it is right now.
I pray that this happy, contented, PEACEFUL feeling lasts forever. Seriously, I'm SO blessed!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Thankful November

Encouraging Words
I feel grateful for those who speak encouraging words, even if they don't know exactly WHO their audience is.
I came across a saying, and felt inspired and hope to make it a part of my life. I'm sure the woman who said it didn't know she would be inspiring someone like me, maybe she did, but I'm grateful that she said it.
"Life is not a race--but indeed a journey. Be honest. Work hard. Be choosy. Say "thank you," "I love you," and "great job" to someone each day. Go to church, take time for prayer. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh. Let your handshake mean more than a pen and paper. Love your life and what you've been given; it is not accidental--search for your purpose and do it as best you can. Dreaming does matter. It allows you to become that which you aspire to be. Laugh often. Appreciate the little things in life and enjoy them. Some of the best things really are free. Do not worry, less wrinkles are more becoming. Forgive, it frees the soul. Take time for yourself--plan for longevity. Recognize the special people you've been blessed to know. Live for today, enjoy the moment."
-Bonnie Mohr

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thankful November

I have so many things that make me laugh. I'm grateful that even when things aren't perfect, that I can find humor in things.
The number one place I find humor is in my boys. They are constantly making me laugh.
Jake has learned that funny things make mommy and daddy laugh, and today while talking with Cameron, Grandpa was mentioned. Jake immediately piped up by saying, "Gampa funny!" Then he covered his mouth and began laughing.
I'm grateful to be around people who have a good sense of humor, and can appreciate mine. Some days it's just fun to laugh.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thankful November

Yes, I am grateful that we have Walmart. I love going to ONE store and getting SO many things (even though most of the time I don't always *need* them.)
Really, it is one of my most favorite stores and I do love that I can find almost anything that I may want or need there.
I'm just glad that I don't live in the middle of nowhere and don't have access to Walmart.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thankful November

Freedom and Those Who Sacrifice to Preserve That Freedom for Me
I didn't really PLAN on making today's post so appropriate to Veterans Day, but it just worked out that way.
I feel so incredibly grateful to those soldiers who fight to preserve our freedom, and I also feel deeply grateful to their families who sacrifice their time with their loved ones for MY rights.
Last night was a rough night for me. I was without my hubby and trying to deal with two little boys who do the things they normally do (whining, begging, screaming, disobeying....) and I lost it. I got frustrated and yelled and put them to bed quickly before I did something I regretted. I really missed having the support of Steve and wondered if he were to leave me to care for this family all by myself for a year, how would I survive. Then I thought of my friends who DO go without their husbands for long periods of time. The sacrifice is SO huge, and I feel like thanks is not adequate enough.
I've also been contemplating the shooting that happened last week and how these men and women sacrifice ALL the time, not just when they're at war.
We have so many servicemen and women that deserve our appreciation and respect, and I want to add my small thanks for their HUGE sacrifice for me to live the way I do.
Freedom is something that I also appreciate. Those men who fought for the declaration of independence and the constitution are men that I also feel indebted to. They worked to make this land a place where we have the right to do so MANY things. With all the recent changes that have been made, I feel like my freedom is getting smaller and smaller. I worry that we're giving up too much of our basic freedoms that the founding fathers fought SO hard for in order to have *peace.* (And with that *peace* I'm not entirely sure that's the word I'm looking for.)
I am grateful to live in a land that has so many freedoms, and I hold them SO SO SO sacred. We are so blessed.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thankful November

Random Nice Strangers
Yesterday, while driving around town in the dark, I noticed that my front headlight was blown out. BOO!! On the way home, I made a quick stop at an auto parts store.
The employee who was up front greeted me (dragging my two boys with me) and asked what I needed. I told him, and he looked it all up for me, and found it before I could even catch my breath. After ringing it up, and trying to convince me to buy the brighter, fancier, more expensive head lights, I thanked him and was about to leave when he asked me if I was going to install it now, I said I might try, and he asked if he could help.
In about 3 minutes he completely installed the light FOR me. All I did was stand there.
I was SO grateful! I thanked him, calmed my whiny boys and went home on a brightly lit road.
I'm so grateful that there are helpful, happy, NICE random strangers willing to help a crazy lady and her two kids LATE at night!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Thankful November

Good Music
I DID have to specify that it's good music I'm thankful for and not just music. (My old neighbors have turned me off to *all* kinds of music.....)
Yesterday was our ward's Primary program, and I was asked to sing one of the songs with Steve. It turned out pretty nice (I think...) and the kids did a FABULOUS job. They knew those songs SO well, and they sounded like a little choir of angels.
I have such a love for the beautiful church music (especially the Primary songs). I know there are some who don't think we celebrate enough with our music, but to me, it's the most BEAUTIFUL kind of music, and it brings the Spirit.
I also love and am grateful to those who write music that uplifts and makes people happy. I can't tell you how many times I've been in a crabby mood, and hear a happy song and my mood will change.
I am so grateful for music, especially the kind that brings happiness and the Spirit.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Thankful November

And not just ANY blankets, but my comfy, warm, homemade blankets. I have several blankets lying around my living room at all times. And not just because they look nice, but because sometimes it's nice to climb underneath a blanket and snuggle a grumpy child. Or if I'm just a little chilled, it's nice to snuggle beneath.
We have been given several VERY nice quilts over the years, and I am grateful that people love me enough to make me something nice. I'm so grateful for those nice feelings on cold days.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Thankful November

My Mommy
I have the BEST mommy around. For years and years I was a major brat and would tell her almost daily that I hated her. (Yes, I've apologized over and over....but it's NEVER enough!) When I became a teenager I realized that the one thing I really wanted out of my life was to be friends with my mom. It took many, MANY years before that happened.
BUT now we ARE friends. In fact, besides Steve, she is my best friend. We talk about anything and everything. We are SO alike, and I wonder if that's why I disliked her so much growing up. Anyway, we will quite often say the same thing to Cameron, in the SAME tone of voice. (We said it one time at the same time, it was like hearing it in stereo!)
She is an amazing example to me of selfless sacrifice. She's taken care of MANY family members, including both of my grandmothers when they were sick with cancer. She now cares for her handicapped brother, doing more for him than I'm SURE she'd like to do. She helps out MY little family. She's there to support me, and let me know that she cares.
Yesterday she gave me a quick call to ask if I needed her to pick something up for me at the store. She doesn't HAVE to do this, but she does it anyway, and I'm so grateful.
I have the bestest mommy, and I am SO grateful that she and I have the relationship that we do now. I am SO blessed!

Friday, November 06, 2009

Thankful November

Indoor Plumbing
Yeah, I went there. :P
All day yesterday I was feeling pretty miserable (the flu has hit...) and I was SO glad that I had my little potty rooms to go to instead of running outside somewhere.
I wish that I had felt well enough to take a shower. I can't imagine NOT having warm, running water IN my house. We are so blessed!!
Now to make them self-cleaning.....

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Thankful November

Good Friends
Over my life I have been truly blessed to have such good friends surrounding me. When I was VERY young, we lived on a street that had NO other people who lived around us. Oh, there were bars and stores, but no neighbors. I dreamed of living somewhere where I would have friends. We moved to a WONDERFUL neighborhood when I was almost 5, and I met my first of many good friends.
She taught me how to use my imagination. She accepted me for who I am. And even when we fought (which, by the way, was TOTALLY stupid....) we always made up and acted like nothing had been wrong.
In high school I had a VERY good group of friends. I believe that I would have been a VERY different person if I had not been a part of this group. They encouraged me in SO many ways. I can't believe that I was really so lucky to have these girls in my life. (The occasional guy would try to join our group, but for the most part it was all girls...) I don't talk to many of the girls anymore, but I do appreciate the example they were to me.
And now that I'm older, I feel SO blessed to have SO many friends. I have good church friends, I have good family friends, and now because of the computer, I have amazing friends all over the country and a few in other countries. I feel so blessed to have people who care about me all over the world.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Thankful November

SO much is packed into this one word. I am SO grateful to have the Gospel in my life. I know with how rebellious I've been in my life, that I would not be the happy person I am today if I did not have the blessings of the Gospel.
I'm grateful that our Heavenly Father truly does care about each of us. He loves us so much, and he is personally invested in each of our lives. Many times I have felt His love for me, and I know that He loves all of us.
I feel blessed to know about where I came from before I was born, and where I'm going when I die. That has helped bring me calm when I otherwise would lose my mind.
I'm grateful to know what I know, and that my Heavenly Father loves me enough to continue to send revelation in this day and age to his Prophets. I feel SO blessed!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Thankful November

How can I NOT be grateful to have this little boy in my life? After struggling to get pregnant for over 5 years, imagine my shock when I took the home pregnancy test and found out that I really WAS pregnant. At first, I quietly told Steve that he shouldn't get his hopes up, but that there were two lines. We both just smiled and thought about how amazing it was that we had gotten what we'd prayed for. (And then I spent the whole next week in prayer, THANKING Heavenly Father for blessing me.)
Jake truly brings joy into our home. I find myself constantly laughing at the little things he does. Like yesterday, he would take the empty trick-or-treat bucket, flip it upside-down and push it down on his head, rock on his rocking toy while "reading" a flyer we got in the mail. I just laughed at the visual, because I knew if I'd gone to get the camera to capture it, he'd stop.
He is so much fun to watch interact with my Cameron too. I don't know how they still get along with each other after they drive one another SO nuts. But whenever Jake sees Cameron after he's been gone to school there is much rejoicing. Both boys laugh and play for a few minutes before the arguing and bossiness comes out. Those few minutes of happiness and joy make me SO grateful to have this little boy. (Not that I don't love having him the rest of the time, but those few minutes are the times when I feel the blessing of having two children the easiest.)
It wasn't until I had Jacob that I truly understood how DIFFERENT Cameron was. Jake says SO much, even though most of it is hard to understand. He really understands US, and is such an obedient child. I love the fact that he picks up at LEAST a word a day. I love trying to figure out his little vocabulary.
Jake is a funny child, who knows it. He spends his days trying to make us laugh, and then feeling pride in his own little sense of accomplishment. He loves us all unconditionally, and we love him SO much. I am so lucky to have these little boys in my life!

Monday, November 02, 2009

Thankful November

I'm getting an early start today....
He was my first baby. And he's still my baby, despite what he thinks.
Because of Cameron, I've had to do some pretty big growing up and changing my ideas of what having kids would be like.
I remember seeing him for the first time after he was born and thinking, "This little boy and I have a long way to go..." I instantly fell in love with him, and we've been together since, doing a lot of growing up together.
When I learned when he was almost a year old that he wasn't "normal," I never really thought that he couldn't ever BE normal. I always figured he was just a little behind and that eventually he'd catch up. I figured it was just a slight set-back.
Since then, I've learned that Cameron will probably never catch up to his peers. He will probably always be just a little behind. And in the last year or so, I've accepted that. I've learned that despite what he can and can't do on his own, he is my son, who I love dearly, and I need to just live with my new altered reality.
He's taught me to be a little more patient (even though I need to be a LOT more patient....) and continues to love is crazy mama despite MY set-backs.
I love having my Cameron in my life. I'm so glad that Steve and I followed the promptings of the Spirit early on in our marriage to have kids. He's been such a great blessing to us.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Thankful November

I'm not that good at reading other's blogs, but...I just barely read my friend, Mary's, blog and she had a FABULOUS idea. A thankful post everyday until Thanksgiving. I'm stealing that idea, because I need more gratitude in my life.
My husband
Today I'm grateful for a loving husband.
He puts up with my bad days better than I deserve. He works hard for my little family. He loves my family and has grown with me in the last 10 years.
We can read each others' minds most times, it makes me laugh. When I have some fun news about the boys, or something that is devastating to me, I am anxious to talk to him and tell him.
He's a great friend and makes me want to be a better me.
Love you, honey, and I'm SO grateful to have you in my life!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!!

This year Cameron was a vampire, and Jake was a dragon. At our ward Halloween party Jake won in the baby boy category, he won a big box of M&Ms. Cameron got scared at the spook alley, and has vowed that he won't do that again.
Trick or Treating was fun. We tried to get out when it was fairly light, and all went well until we got around the corner, by then Jake was DONE! I took both boys back, and my FABULOUS cousins took Cameron out again for me. He got QUITE the haul, that I had to go through and pull out the sticky, gummy candies...but he's still got a lot. All in all, a VERY fun, nice weather, holiday!
Happy Halloween!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Unknown Prayers Answered

I've been pretty humbled lately. I feel very grateful at the same time.
First off, I have THE best visiting teacher. Seriously, I LOVE this woman. Don't be jealous, but don't ask for her can't have her...she's MINE!!
She called me yesterday morning wondering if she could stop in and visit. Not a problem, I'd just be in my messy house, still in pajamas....She promised a quick visit.
When she showed up she came with a big bucket full of goodies. She talked with me, and we laughed and giggled. talking with her just makes me SO happy!! She is who she is and she doesn't change for anyone. I've decided that when I grow up I want to be like her.
Then today, was a busy, LONG day. I was going to see if I could start donating plasma so that I could add some extra money to our Christmas budget, but after a VERY frustrating day, I found out that I don't qualify, YET. I can't donate until I'm finished nursing Jake and once I get a paper signed by my doctor saying that he's monitoring my insulin resistance. I *might* be able to try again in December.
So I was feeling bad for myself, wiped out, tired....and I got a fun call from another lady in my ward. She wanted to know what apartment I was in because she was in front of my building and she had something for me. (I had just woken up from a short nap and wasn't really *aware* of what she'd said, or the fact that she "had something" for me.)
She rang the doorbell and I opened it to find a SWEET woman, (I know, most women are sweet, right...) handing me an exercise ball. Last month, we'd had a fun service auction for our middle of the week Relief Society meeting, and I had bid on her service of getting the winner an exercise ball and teaching them how to use it. I didn't win it, but she's so sweet, she got me AND another woman the same thing. She asked me when I could exercise, and I was so out of it (hello, I JUST woke up...*giggle*) I kinda said I'd talk to her later.
How kind and SWEET are the women of my ward? Honestly. I am SO humbled that I have these women thinking of me and helping me.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

An Experiment in Baking Bread

Anyone who knows me could tell you that I do NOT bake. If forced to, I may, on occasion, bake cookies or cakes, but they have to be THE easiest recipes. I am not good at it, nor do I particularly LOVE it. I only put up with it because I love to EAT.
Lately, I've been inspired by some friends who have been making their own food (bread, chili, cakes, suckers, treats of all kinds). I've felt like if I had lived in pioneer times my poor family would have starved, just because I dislike baking and cooking SO much. But, because of these friends, I've decided to try doing just a little bit more. I mean, making my home and family happy is my job as a stay at home mom, right?
So today I got up the guts to make my own bread. I have NEVER made my own bread before (except in a bread maker, but that doesn't really count, does it?) I've tried rolls and cinnamon rolls, but they never seem to taste as good as they do when other people make them. NO more leaning on other people's successes for me; I'm going to be a *real* woman.
After a quick call to my mom (who ended up talking to me for a while, putting me off of the schedule I had biggie, I love my mom and we can talk about nothing for a LONG time...) I got some courage and decided to try.
Instead of following a big elaborate recipe, which would NOT be me....I decided to take a recipe I've already used in the past (for cinnamon rolls) and try to turn it into a bread recipe. It's actually a roll recipe, but how different can rolls and bread be?
I followed the simple instructions (and ended up with dough clear up to my elbows....) I put the dough in my two bread pans, let it raise and right now they're in the oven.
Oh, it smells delightful.
The tops aren't pretty, but I'm hoping the end result will be a happy, and filled tummy.
Results to follow shortly....If it tastes as good as it smells, I will share the recipe....then you too can feel domestic! ;)(Recipe....)
After Dinner Rolls
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup sugar (it was a LITTLE much, next time I'm only using 1/4 cup)
3 Tbs. yeast (Saf Instant is BEST!)
2 eggs, beaten
1 can evaporated milk (12 oz.)
1/8 tsp. salt
5-6 cups flour
1 cup boiling water
Mix together. Form into balls and place on baking sheet and let raise. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
To make bread, follow the directions for rolls, except place half the dough (formed in a ball) into two bread pans (one batch makes two loaves). Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.