Friday, February 27, 2009

Three Thoughts

  1. I'm always amazed at how scared I can get to run an activity for girls ages 8-11. Today I had an activity, the other leader is out of town so it was just me. One girl showed up which is pretty normal, sometimes we have zero, other times we have three, mostly one. Anyway, I always get worried and stressed for nothing. Even though it was just me and her, she seemed to have a blast. Heck I gave her chocolate milk, and she got to hold my baby why wouldn't she have fun?
  2. I think I am absolutely so lucky. I have the best husband, and the cutest kids. I love them!
  3. I love when people comment on my blog, it makes me feel befriended. I get all my comments sent to my email, and its pretty much the only email I get other than netflix so its pretty exciting when I open the account and have three new messages.

For Grammy

The other day my mother requested some head shots of my baby. She said she need to see the shape of her head, (don't ask me) she said it was a grandma thing. So I obliged.
These first two are pretty much what my daughter looks like to me.
I think she looks more like my side than my husband. But she does have Rasmussen ears, like her dad. Which is funny because my son looks like his dad, but has my ears.


I took way more pictures than I was planning. Big brother was asleep, and we were having fun.

This was my attempt to get her smiling in the picture. It hard because she gets fascinated with the camera then stops smiling. But for me to get her to focus on me talking baby talk I have a hard time aiming the camera without looking, hence my ear.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Shot up

My children had their well child visits yesterday. Ironically enough neither of them were well. They both got immunization, and so now our house is a sorry lot with their sore legs and stuffy noses. My daughter was 11.5 lbs, and 23.75 inches long. My son was 29.5 lbs and 36.25 inches long. Thank goodness I swear he was 28 pounds for almost a year. My son was 25th and 25th percentile. My daughter was 50th for weight and 75th for length. Yes, she is long and leggy. I have no problem with 25th its easier to move them and such. My doctor and her nurse are nice and all but I don't think I will be coming back up this way for her, once we move out west. I don't like pushy doctors and after this time I decided she was pushy. She asked me about J man development, then asked is he in preschool or daycare? I said no, then she said in very condescending, pushy way, next year. I just looked at her. If I decided to put him in preschool next year is my own business, not hers to regulate. She can tell me she recommends it, she can tell me why she thinks it would be a good thing, but in my opinion I am paying her, she can not tell me how to raise my children, especially if they are healthy. If he was lacking developmentally she could say it will help catch him up, but he is clearly not lacking. I miss J's doctor he had before we moved, he and his nurse were the best doctors I've ever seen for kids. Even though he was a family doctor not a pediatrician. I don't like pediatricians offices, I feel like its a cesspool for germs. Not that I feel like other doctor's offices are germ free, but I'm at least not scared of my child moving.
Begin the rant:
I will probably put J in preschool next year, but I haven't decided. I have a friend who's little girl is very intelligent, and she decided to not put her in preschool, because she knew even without preschool she would be bored in kindergarten because she is so smart. And her daughter is now in kindergarten and bored, without going to preschool. If J learns how to read in the next 6 months, then I'm pretty sure he will also be bored in normal kindergarten. I realize preschool is more than learning to read, but I'm sure I can find my child plenty of social interactions without paying for preschool. And no this rant is not about the money. This rant is about America's obsessiveness for free childcare that we call "school" and maybe if our children played just a little bit more and did less facts, figures and flashcards the children would not only be less overstrung, but would actually be healthier and smarter too. In the doctors office while I was waiting I read a pamphlet about ADHD. It was ridiculous. I think ADHD is a legitimate problem for some people, but I don't think medication is always the way to solve it. More play often helps control the symptoms. In the pamphlet it said things like, my ADHD got worse in high school, so with medication and help from the counselor I learned how to write down assignments in a schedule. I thought SERIOUS?! he doesn't sound like he has ADHD he sounds like he is a high school student that is involved into many activities and has too much homework. Learning how to schedule time is a vital skill for anyone not only "hyperactive" kids. And heaven forbid small children not wanting to sit still for 7 hours and only learn math and english. Rant complete.
Back to doctors, I loved my son's pediatric dentist, so even after we move we'll come back up here for that. The dentist my husband and I saw, is a sub, (long story) so no need to come back for him. After actually having a baby, I decided I liked my OB a lot. I don't know if she is my favorite doctor in the world, but good enough that I don't want to take a gamble and try to find a new one. I would be perfectly happy to see her for all my babies, and have all my babies in the hospital I had N babe. My husband and I loved the hospital, the nurses were all so helpful and nice. Most of the nurses we had in the hospital with our son were push and rude, so it was great to not have a single nurse that was rude for my daughter. I always expected to leave this state after we finished school. That didn't happen, getting a job is who you know not what you know and we didn't know anyone with computer job hook ups outside of this state. I then expected to be gone before my son started kindergarten, that is clearly not going to happen. I won't be surprised if my son gets ordained to be a deacon while living in this state. Although I do think we will be living somewhere else before he graduates from high school. Who knows I could be wrong. I'm not sure how my children's sad pathetic immunizations turned into my 15 year plan for doctors. Its really their colds that make them pathetic. We hadn't been sick all winter. But once the weather warmed up, my son was a goner. He handles cold weather fine, he just doesn't do well in fall and spring when it goes back and forth between cold and warm.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The birthday fun never ends

Ok, it does now this is the last post. I saved two presents for my son to open on his actual birthday. One was from his grammy, she was on speaker phone so she could hear the fun. It was really funny to hear him narrate to his grammy. Unfortunately I think she mostly heard little sister screaming.


The last birthday cupcake.

End of the Valentine Birthday Pictures

The other night, was playing around on picasa and created these. I love them. I'm sure no one else cares but me and maybe a grandma.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Happy Mardi Gras...Merry Mardi Gras...

My son made this mask at the library. Sort of the helper lady, was a little controlling, but I think he still enjoyed himself. I think he did a good job of making a manly mask. I was impressed, he picked out the feathers, beads and other embellishings, its just the lady helping him decided where he should glue.
I don't like paying taxes, but if we have to pay taxes I'm glad some good for things like parks, public library, and free crafts for children at the public library. My husband said something to the effect of, I don't like taxes either, but if we are going to have to pay they should go for things all people can use, like libraries, and roads. I love the free crafts that my son gets to do at the library. I've learned he has skills I didn't know he had. Like beading, I would have had no idea that my son was naturally an excellent beader.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Persuasion

Persuasion Persuasion by Jane Austen
It only took me a year to finish this book. To be fair to myself, I will say I maybe spent a month total out of that year to actually sit down and hold the book. When I started it a year ago, I was really enjoying it, but I don't think I enjoyed it quite as much this time around. This year I originally thought Anne Elliot was a push over, but once allowed for her to fictionally exist in her century and not in 20th or 21st Century, I gave her a little more credit. Sir Elliot and the sisters were extremely annoying to me, but I assuming Austen wrote them that way on purpose. Her sister Mary, it a stunning example that depression sometimes comes on out of pure laziness (yes I know sometimes, it has other cause it too, like chemical imbalances.) By the time I got to the end I did end up loving the store which is what I knew would happen. But the question I have is, Austen wrote that the oldest sister was the prettiest, but yet all the men wanted Anne. I didn't quite understand that paradox. Was it that the men liked her personality better, or was it that just Sir Elliot thought the eldest was prettiest?

The book made me think about social classes we impose on ourselves, and the ones other impose on us. The US may be officially a classless society, but we sure impose plenty on ourselves.

The best part about reading this book, was while finishing the last few chapters, I had the song Clair de Lune in my head, (thanks to my son always turning on the music for his sister in her Graco Baby swing. My son loves classical music.) It made for a very enjoyable back drop to the end of a romance novel, even if Debussy is the wrong time period for Austen.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sunday Journal Post

I need to keep a journal, and make this more of a blog, but yet I'm too lazy. For me recording spiritual things,in a journal is a necessity, so here it is. Our fourth Sunday lesson was on Elaine S. Dalton's talk, A Return to Virtue. I wasn't able to go to Relief Society, because my boy had a cough left over from his fever three days ago, but I still read the talk at home. During conference I don't think I appreciated this talk, but after reading it today, I thought it was fantastic, I would totally recommend reading it, especially the second quarter of the talk. What stood out to me was, her talking about Satan poisoning us by degrees, in reference to Lehonti in Alma 47. She said,
What could be more deceptive than to entice women, young and old, you and me, to be so involved in ourselves, our looks, our clothes, our body shape and size that we lose sight of our divine identity and our ability to change the world through our virtuous influence?
(She also mentioned vices for men, and teenagers.) This thought has been a constant in my mind the last few months. Now I have no problem with women looking fashionable but the question comes in...is it in moderation, what examples are we setting, are we focused on keeping covenants, or trying to stretch them to make the more convenient for ourselves.
A few things have brought this to my attention, over the past few months.
  1. When one of my activity day girls (age 10ish) in my last ward complimented me on a shirt that was low cut. I don't think the compliment was referring to the cut but it made me think what type of example am I setting? I don't want her to see Sister Huntz... and assume it is ok to wear low cut shirts, or anyone to see me for that matter. I vowed to be better after that, I was really embarrassed even the though the girl did not know.
  2. When I was pregnant with my son, I remember a Relief Society lesson where we watched part of a talk given by Elder Holland. I can't remember anything about it, other than the thought, "If women of the church are concerned with a nip here or tuck there, what are we teaching our daughters?." He actually didn't use that phrase, but it is emblazoned in my mind. How is my self perception of my body going to effect my daughters' body images? I made a goal from that day on to have a healthy body image. The talk is titled, To the Young Women of the Church, but much of it is as relevant to the women of the church. Actually if I was going to recommend only one talk it would be this one over Sister Dalton's. I think the church should print it up on little plastic cards, for all the Young Women to have in their wallets, maybe even for the adult women too. Yes, I love this talk this much. I included the part of the talk I'm referening to at the end of the post, along with another paragraph I liked.
  3. Lastly, in a Relief Society lesson a few months ago, the teacher mentioned some quote, maybe by Brigham Young, or maybe Joseph Smith, about the daughters of Zion acting like the harlots of Babylon, or something to the effect. The teacher said she thinks one interpretation of that is women dressing immodestly. I started to think about, I thought the teacher had a very good point. Good and bad have come out of that lesson. I am trying to be better about my clothing options, but at the same time, I have started to notice low cut and other revealing clothing on other women who have made the same covenants as me. It quite easy to tell if they have made those covenants when they are trying to push the modesty limit. I would rather not notice, and not feel like I'm judging them. But I have noticed some women who wear very low cut shirts, who have teenager daughters, my question is how do you teach your daughters about modesty, if you are not so keen on following it? Maybe some parents don't care, but personally I don't think I want teenage boys noticing my daughter's immodesty. Plus I would like to hope that other parents are going to teach their teenage daughters about modesty so my teenage son doesn't have to deal with that. I remember a lesson at some point, I can't remember who gave it or where it was but they said it really was not fair to our Aaronic Priesthood holders to dress provocatively, and in all honesty I didn't really understand until I had a husband to explain it bluntly to me. My RS teacher might have misinterpreted it a few months ago, but I have decided to agree with her. I try to often make a mental check on if I'm acting like I'm from Zion or Babylon in my appearance.
Here is the section of Elder Holland's talk I was refering to:
In this same vein may I address an even more sensitive subject. I plead with you young women to please be more accepting of yourselves, including your body shape and style, with a little less longing to look like someone else. We are all different. Some are tall, and some are short. Some are round, and some are thin. And almost everyone at some time or other wants to be something they are not! But as one adviser to teenage girls said: “You can’t live your life worrying that the world is staring at you. When you let people’s opinions make you self-conscious you give away your power. … The key to feeling [confident] is to always listen to your inner self—[the real you.]” 8 And in the kingdom of God, the real you is “more precious than rubies.” 9 Every young woman is a child of destiny and every adult woman a powerful force for good. I mention adult women because, sisters, you are our greatest examples and resource for these young women. And if you are obsessing over being a size 2, you won’t be very surprised when your daughter or the Mia Maid in your class does the same and makes herself physically ill trying to accomplish it. We should all be as fit as we can be—that’s good Word of Wisdom doctrine. That means eating right and exercising and helping our bodies function at their optimum strength. We could probably all do better in that regard. But I speak here of optimum health; there is no universal optimum size.

Frankly, the world has been brutal with you in this regard. You are bombarded in movies, television, fashion magazines, and advertisements with the message that looks are everything! The pitch is, “If your looks are good enough, your life will be glamorous and you will be happy and popular.” That kind of pressure is immense in the teenage years, to say nothing of later womanhood. In too many cases too much is being done to the human body to meet just such a fictional (to say nothing of superficial) standard. As one Hollywood actress is reported to have said recently: “We’ve become obsessed with beauty and the fountain of youth. … I’m really saddened by the way women mutilate [themselves] in search of that. I see women [including young women] … pulling this up and tucking that back. It’s like a slippery slope. [You can’t get off of it.] … It’s really insane … what society is doing to women.” 10

In terms of preoccupation with self and a fixation on the physical, this is more than social insanity; it is spiritually destructive, and it accounts for much of the unhappiness women, including young women, face in the modern world. And if adults are preoccupied with appearance—tucking and nipping and implanting and remodeling everything that can be remodeled—those pressures and anxieties will certainly seep through to children. At some point the problem becomes what the Book of Mormon called “vain imaginations.” 11 And in secular society both vanity and imagination run wild. One would truly need a great and spacious makeup kit to compete with beauty as portrayed in media all around us.
But I also like this:
First of all, I want you to be proud you are a woman. I want you to feel the reality of what that means, to know who you truly are. You are literally a spirit daughter of heavenly parents with a divine nature and an eternal destiny. 1 That surpassing truth should be fixed deep in your soul and be fundamental to every decision you make as you grow into mature womanhood. There could never be a greater authentication of your dignity, your worth, your privileges, and your promise. Your Father in Heaven knows your name and knows your circumstance. He hears your prayers. He knows your hopes and dreams, including your fears and frustrations. And He knows what you can become through faith in Him.
For you to fully claim Heavenly Father’s blessings and protection, we ask you to stay true to the standards of the gospel of Jesus Christ and not slavishly follow the whims of fads and fashions. The Church will never deny your moral agency regarding what you should wear and exactly how you should look. But the Church will always declare standards and will always teach principles. As Sister Susan Tanner taught this morning, one of those principles is modesty. In the gospel of Jesus Christ, modesty in appearance is always in fashion. Our standards are not socially negotiable....Good friends would never embarrass you, demean you, or exploit you. Neither should your clothing.
Overall it was a good sabbath. I did attend sacrament meeting, and listen to excellent talks in my opinion about missionary work. Talks that proved:
  1. Just because someone does appear to have accepted what we are teaching them, does not mean they won't come around at some point.
  2. People are always watching our example, whether it be good or bad. They will notice the light of Christ in us, that we are ourselves do not see, and be drawn to it.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Before the Dawn

Just when life couldn't get any worse, the dawn came...as I put both of my children to bed, I was happy as could be.
Finally after 8+ hours my daughter finally decided to stop crying and finally nurse.
Finally after weeks my son was able to say, "mommy, daddy proud of me for pooping in toliet."
And finally after 24 short years of life, I am utterly and completely a mom. I can't go a week without talking about my offsprings' bowel movements.
But speaking of bed, after a very stressful day with my daughter, after she finally went to sleep with a fully tummy, I found myself not wanting to put her down. Who would have thought?!
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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Not Candy Canes but Valentine Js

Lets not forget the cookies. Is there anything so pretty as a shinny cookie sheet covered in cut out cookie dough.

This was J's first real experience frosting cookies. We cooked the cookies before we frosted them.



In case you are wondering, that platter says, "Smart Women crave good company", the back says, something to the effect of children make good company. Some how its all tied to the boys and girls club, I don't quite now how, ask my sister it was my Christmas present last year. And well its great advice, plus it came in a huge box, with stickers with the same picture plastered all over it. Not only that its very useful, its my only light weight platter.

Love is not over

I have more valentine's fun to post. It was just so fun the pictures, and treats never end.



Boy were those cupcakes tasty!

Brits and Books

I took this from Bec's blog, because some of these books I haven't read but do hope to, so I figured if I want to succeed in reading them, I need the list. Where better to keep the list than my blog? Remember I don't blog for your enjoyment I blog for mine. Your enjoyment is just an extra added bonus. When I was pregnant I had a private blog of only me and my husband so I could record life, that was literally my own enjoyment, I think my husband only visited twice.
Anyway, to the blog post:

The BBC believes most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here. How do your reading habits stack up?

Instructions:
1) Look at the list and put an 'x' after those you have read.
2) Add a 'L'to the ones you LOVE.
3) Star (p) those you plan on reading.
4) Tally your total at the bottom.

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen--L
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien-- p
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte-- p-maybe, I will eventually but not high on the list
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling-X
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - P
6 The Bible- I don't know if L or X is better, I mean yeah, I really like the book of John, but I don't know if I will ever read Numbers again. I read the whole thing in High School to prove it to myself.
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte-- L
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell—X
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens—X
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott-- P
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy-- P
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller--
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare-- I've read a few, I doubt I will ever read the complete
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier-
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien--x
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger-- X
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot--
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell p
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald--L
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens--
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy -p
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams—P
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh-
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky--P
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck- x
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll-X
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame-- I might have, but I might have just read spark notes
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy- p
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens--p
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis-- L
34 Emma - Jane Austen- x, I read 3/4 then school started again, does that count?
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen-x in the process
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe -- L
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini --
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden-
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne-- L
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell— x
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown--
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery --L
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy--
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood--
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding--
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan-
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel-- I need to finish it
52 Dune - Frank Herbert-- P I should its my husband's favorite
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons-
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen- L
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon-
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens--P
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley--
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon--
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck-- x
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov-
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold--
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas- I read the abridge for High School, which I think should count, its still super long, I plan on reading the full book too some day
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac-
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding-
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville - P
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens -- p
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker- p
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett--
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson -P I have read him before, just not this one
75 Ulysses - James Joyce--
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath--
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray--
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens--X
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell--
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker--
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert--
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White--P
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle—P
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton--
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad-- X
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery- I can't remember, some I was suppose to read, but did I ever?
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams--
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas-P
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare-
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl--X
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo- p

24ish, depends on how you count, since I had a lot of starts. Not bad, one for each year I'm alive right? Considering I didn't start reading until I was 16, I think thats not bad at all. I read before 16, just not for leisure.
Apparently this is a facebook thing, but I'm not on facebook. I waste enough time on here.
Which is now very apparent to me, my son thinks he should spent all his time on the computer too. I'm trying to diet my computer use it hope it will decrease his. He now has is own account on windows, we needed to lock down the internet and the system profiles from his little finger clicks. The other day I got out of the shower, and I could hear he was watching something on the computer, before his own account, he had clicked on the firefox latest headlines button, and was watching movies on BBC. He is also a part of KidZui now, that way he can watch Youtube without me having to watch every single click. He has his own avatar. What is the world coming too?! I still monitor his computer use, but at least I can get in the shower without too much fear. I also put up the laptop sometimes, or he will spend all day. He also gets it taken away if he messes his pants. Only big boys are allow on the computer and big boys use the toilet. Sometimes a TV seems better than only the computer. Between my son wanting to use the computer and my husband working at home more often, my screen times has been cut way down. Now if I could only cut down my son's, luckily for the most part out of sight, out of mind.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Demands

I really do not think I'm a bad mom. For one I don't abuse my kids, so I figure hey on the scale of good parenting, I got to be up there. For two they want to give me hugs so I'm must be doing something right. Even the little one, when I pick her up, will lean into me, and wrap her skinny little long arms around me. You may say I'm imagining it she is too little, but considering she hates to lean on us, and has been holding her head up straight since she was three weeks old, I'm pretty sure its a hug.
Here is the reason I feel like I'm not meeting all my demands... I take everything too personal. Its true, despite how much it annoys my husband, I do. If my children cry a lot I wonder what I'm doing wrong. I keep wondering what I've done to make my son not want to poop in the toilet anymore. I keep wondering what I can do to get him to start again.
I think what am I doing wrong that makes my daughter go into crying bouts, or what have I done that makes her spit all day.
When my husband is in a bad mood, I wonder what can I do to make it better.
Or when money is tight, I wonder what did a do buy that was too much, what did a allow my son to get a the store, that is now busting the budget. (Truth be known, it was 50-50, it the hospital bills from the baby, and expensive rent) (I am spending less, I go to JoAnns half as often and spend half as much as I did in our cheap rent apartment down south.)
Overall this is a terrible habit. Its a good thing I didn't marry an emotionally abusive man, or he could really capitalize on this. I am working at not blaming myself for everything that goes wrong. But when I feel overly stressed or overly tired, all the sudden I start blaming myself, and I can't see things clearly. Its actually excellent for me to be the mother of a toddler/ a mother of two, I'm understanding agency so much better than before.
For example, I taught my son how to be potty trained, he was potty trained for 7 months or so, we were pretty much accident free for months, until January. I've tried every incentive, but yet my son has no desire to sit on the toilet. Here is where his agency comes in, he has to sit on the toilet every evening, but if he doesn't go then, and he goes an hour after we put him to bed, what can I do? Nothing, he has his agency. I have done everything I can to help/teach him, but he ultimately has the end choice, and his choice is not my fault if I've done everything I can. There is no reason in getting upset, because then it turns into a power struggle (easier said than done). I am trying to calmly deal with the situation, tell him I'm disappointed. Tell him he would have gotten a bowl of ice cream if he would have gone in the toilet. But after that there is nothing I can do. As bizarre as it all sounds it helps me understand the gospel so much more.
It helps me understand better that I do the best I can in life, and the Lord makes up the rest.
Its like when I was still pregnant, and every month all month long I really really tried to do visiting teaching, but I almost always failed, every single month. The women in power of Visiting Teaching, kept asking why it wasn't getting done. (Our visiting teaching department is very concerned about numbers.) I kept telling them, I'm honestly trying very hard, I spent the whole month trying, but could not get a hold of them. I could tell they didn't really believe me, but what else could I do. Or the months, when my VT partner would say she would set up appointments, and every week I would ask her if she had, and every week, she would say she forgot. What was I suppose to do? Go and schedule them myself? Some would, I did not, I don't work like that. She volunteered to do it, and told me she would, I often offered to do it myself, but she kept telling me she would. I'm sorry if people disagree but I was not going to do in that case. Anyway, I'm sure you all appreciate all these rambling.
I could just type it up and never post the post, and feel better. But at the same time, with as much as I post, I would hate for you all to think my life is always sunshine.
I know life really is never as hard as I seem to think it is, but yet I can still complain. And still feel bogged down, and feel like life is demanding too much of me. Because heck I am not one of those super moms. I will be the first to admit, I'm not a super mom. Some women try to look like super mom, or super woman... whatever they might be doing in life at the time. Not me. More than half the time I strap my son into his car seat, I realize his face has food on it. Do I run inside and wash it? nah... I would hate for people to see me as more put together than I am.
Success to me is not measured by homemade gourmet meals, a sparkling clean house, amazingly well groomed children, in brand new never stained name brand clothing. I would hate to look perfect, like some people do. Heck if I care if my child has more than three toys out at the same time. Success is ending the day, with either the laundry wash or folding, I never set my expectations too high by hoping for both. Success is sitting down with my family for dinner maybe four times a week, with a meal I've made. But even if that number is not met life goes on. Success is saying family prayer with mom, dad, and three year old, half the nights a week, and just one parent and three year old the other nights. Success is having my son sit still for 5 minute Family Home Evening. Success is my son not crying during church, and not running away. Even if that means he is laying in the aisle singing to himself., hey he is not taking up the whole aisle, he has to lay right next to our pew, parallel, not at an angle. Success is when at least once a week, my son is willing to repeat the prayer we are telling him. Success is when he sit still during a prayer at least once every other day. Success is dry underwear even if he is pooping in his pants. Success is one baby smile a day, even if the rest of the time she is crying and spitting up. Success is knowing in 50 years from now we still want to be married, even if one of us is annoyed at the other today. (PS About 99.9 % my husband and I are happy with each other, but this post is blunt, I won't lie, we do get annoyed at each other. In which case adult conversation in the house is zero, the only talking is from a small child, or spoken to a small child.) Success is looking down and realizing that your daughter just spit up all over you in public, but at least you showered this morning, even if she cried for the 15 minutes you got ready. And the biggest success of all... getting two new pairs of LONG jeans that will still fit in 10 months when I look like a gangly 12 year old, for a grand total of $35 before tax. Ok, life might be demanding, life might not be perfect, but at least I got long skinny jeans.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Life

I should list everything I'm thankful for, but instead I'm going to complain. I think life is hard, and it totally stresses me out lately.
There is never enough money
There are too many poopy pants
The dishes always need doing
It takes me all day long to do the laundry, and tomorrow, there will be just as much again
My children always need feeding
There is never enough time to do all the things I want
- I have stacks of books to read
- and stacks of material too sew
- and back to the never enough money, I want to buy every piece of pretty material I see, but I haven't sewn what I have
I never feel like I have enough time to spend with my husband, really this is one of my biggest complaints. Even though we spent lots of time together I always wish there was more time.
First set of immunizations come too soon, I don't even feel like we've adjusted to the new family size and I have to immunize already. Immunizations are so tiring. She cries enough as it is.
Health insurance sucks.
The carpet in my downstairs is nasty. But its a rental, so what can you do?!
Really I'm just very tired it was a long weekend, birthday partying wore me out. And I felt like missed half of the party anyway.
My hormones are still not normal I think, because my nasty carpet made me want to cry.
And by no fault of his own, my husband is always working.
I want a break/vacation, but every day my husband is suppose to get off, he ends up on the phone for 6 hours.
Yes, I know I'm complaining a lot, and all of these are really blessings in disguise.
Its better for my husband to work a lot than get no pay check at all.
I could go through and do the flip side, but instead I'll wallop in my suffering, and instead silently think, life isn't bad at all.
But seriously I don't feel like I'm meeting any of the demands put on me, I feel like I'm falling short in about every aspect. Oh well, the good with the bad right?!
Good night, and Good luck. Or vise versa, I never can remember. I desperately need both.

Hoping to boost the industry

The Tales of Beedle the Bard The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling
It wasn't that trilling of a book. It was a few fairy tales that Rowling wrote. She makes the disclaimer in the book that they are not like "muggle" fairy tales because they don't have happy endings. I'm not looking for happy endings, but a few elements of a story would have been nice, like a sequence of events that relate to a climax. The tales were rather dumb in my opinion, but I did enjoy "Dumblebore's" reviews of the tales afterward, because they were written in JK Rowling form.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sunday School

In the past I have not been a big fan of Sunday School. I figured one of the reasons we are asked to attend is to see how faithful we are in attending, something as boring as all get out. I rarely had interesting Sunday School teachers growing up, and once the the novelty of boys wore off, there was really nothing left for me. After my husband and I got college degrees, we found a nice apartment in a fourplex. We loved our Sunday School teacher, she was so good, it was one of the reasons we didn't want to move. I didn't know it was possible not to want to move because of a Sunday School teacher. Then we moved up here, and we have a really good Sunday school teacher now, but not quite as good. I figure a big part of being a good sunday school teacher is 1. don't be as dry as all get out, and 2. don't try to impress the class with your vast knowledge of boring biblical facts. To me the scriptures are not about historical facts, but about gospel principles. (One of which is humility.) Anyway, this all has nothing to do with anything.
Last Sunday, we had Ward Conference, a member of the Stake Presidency gave the Sunday School lesson, and it was not really a Sunday School lesson but it was still my favorite meeting of the three hours, also something I never knew could happen. He talked about Fasting and Fast Offerings. I will admit that I have a hard time having an attitude of fasting when I'm pregnant or nursing. I actually like Fast Sundays if I'm fasting a meal or two, but I really have a hard time mentally fasting per se without physically fasting. So I guess I should work on that. But this is not the point of the post.
Fasting was a short part of the lesson, it was mostly on Fast Offering. It made me appreciate Fast Offerings more than I have recently, and helped me reflect on Tithing and Fast Offerings, more than I have lately. (The lesson barely mentioned Tithing, but in my mind I have a hard time differentiating between Tithing blessings and Fast Offering blessings.) As we were unlocking our door after church, my husband said, "well I guess we should double our fast offerings again." My response was yup.
Over the past few days since the lesson, I have been reflecting on my fast offering blessings.
My husband wanted to try pay for an undergraduate education without grants, and hopefully without student loans. At first he said if we can't do it without grants we'll get a student loan. I thought he was a little crazy, but I was in love, so I said we can go without grants as long as we don't get a student loan. Grants before loans, since the government pays the interest on the loan until graduation anyway. Some how we made it. He succeeded in his goal. He worked part time during the school year, and full time plus during the summer. I worked full time the summer before we got married, and the summer after we got married, after that I had a kid. I didn't work during the school year, because I study an exorbitant amount for mediocre grades. But we graduated debt free. A few things made this possible,
  1. My dad paid for my tuition, without this I would have either not graduated in four year, not had a child, or would have had to work more.
  2. We went to a University that has incredibly cheap tuition all things considering.
  3. We got some killer deals of cheap rent. (but I tie this to #4)
  4. But mostly I believe we were able to do this because we always paid our tithing in full, and we paid a generous fast offering.
I am writing this post for myself, to record how much gratitude I have for the financial blessing I've received as an adult. I don't really have a plan of how this will all come out, but I just feel the need to write this. When we first got married, we lived in an elderly woman's mother in law basement. Which means, our part of the house was not separated from hers. She would occasionally walk in during our dinner to get to her storage cellar. We didn't know her when we knocked on her door, but she let us stay in her house for $75 a month. Yes you read that right $75, I guess that was the cost of our utilities. The house was in desperate need of updating, it smelled like dust and such, the carpet was very old, and it was like living in a cave from the 70s, but it was still a huge blessing. A week or so after we got married, we sat down and looked at our finances, with what money we still had saved from our summer jobs, with our wedding money, and my husband's measly paycheck, even with only paying $75 a month we only had enough money to get us to about the March. (I say my husband's paycheck was measly because it was, and he would be the first to agree, it was hard to find a job that paid anything above measly in that college town. Too much supply of cheap labor. My husband had the same job all four years of school, with a raise every year, during his senior year, he was in a class, and he was one of three people who made $9 or more, in a class full of seniors. Everyone in class wanted to know what he did to make so much-- $9 a hour at 20 hours a week. Mind you this class was 2 years ago, and we did not make it up to $9 until two years after we were married.) Anyway, so based on our calculations we were going to run out of money about a month and half before school got out for the summer. We didn't really know what we were going to do, but we didn't have much options so we just lived as frugally as we could. We paid our tithing in full, because well I don't think it even occurred to us not to, neither of us were raised with the option to not pay. We paid our fast offerings because it seemed important. Some how we made it to the end of the school year, with enough money to get to Georgia to work for the summer. I still have no idea how we ended up with enough money, our finances defied the laws of mathematics, it was literally a miracle. We never went out, unless we heard of some free dinner, we were first married who cared. We ate only off brand food, I tried off brand mac and cheese twice, and decided I would rather go without than eat off brand mac and cheese. I can't eat anything other than kraft. We didn't have a car payment, we didn't have a loan on my diamond ring, because my husband refused to go into marriage in debt. We never went to the movies unless we won free tickets, we didn't have the Internet (the old lady's house wasn't wired for that), we didn't have tv, we didn't buy anything, other than necessity food and text books literally. (Speaking of TV we read an Ensign article when we were in school about tithing blessing of a man who had run out of food. In it it said he planned to go home hungry and watch tv. We laughed we had not had to go home hungry yet, but at the same time we didn't get to go home and watch TV. Although our lack of TV was more a choice than a financial necessity, many people offered us free tvs.) But even with all that, I know the only reason we made it to Georgia debt free was because we paid our tithing.
By the next semester we had saved up tons of money, but still not enough to get us to the next summer. Plus I was pregnant, the only maternity clothes I had my mom bought me for my birthday. The real test this time came when in a Stake Conference we were asked to double our fast offerings. We heard lots of talks about doubling until it hurt. It hurt, but we were fine. We moved to a more expensive place, but luckily Brent's sister still gave us a good deal on our rent. We had to move, for one, the old lady's adult children weren't so keen on us being there, and second I needed the internet for school while I was home with the baby. But then at some point, we were in another conference and asked to double our fast offerings again. Then it hurt, it really hurt, we were paying almost as much in fast offerings as we were in tithing. We really did not know how we would survive. In the beginning of every school year, and every semester we looked at our finances and did not know how we would surive the whole time. But some how we did, I know it was because we were paying a full tithing and a generous fast offering, plus every time tuition was due, my husband felt it was important to contribute to the Perpitual Education Fund, as a sort of insurance we would have next semester's tution money. Many semesters ended with us expecting to be in the hole, and every semster would end with us having about $86 give or take to our name, total. Which was a huge blessing at least we weren't in red.
It seems unreal to me, that I have lived those miracle tithing stories that you hear in conference, but yet I know I have, I remember doing the math. I have also often wondered how come I got blessings to keep me out of the red when others haven't? I don't know, I doubt I will ever know. But I do know the Lord is just and the Lord is merciful. How that connects to individual blessings I can't understand at this point. All I know is I have seen tithing blessing after tithing blessing in my married life.
The last summer before senior year of college, the job market didn't quite go the way my husband planned, he was employed for part of the summer. I worked a total of two days, which was two more days than I had worked since my son was born, (I worked as a favor to former boss). We REALLY didn't know how we were going to make it senior year, we had less money saved then ever before. But after a few weeks into the school year, my husband met with his counselor and it turned out he was able to graduate a semester early. Imagine that, only one semester of tuition. It was another miracle. We could not believe it. Sure I was a little jealous my husband was graduating a semester before me, me the one who had my graduation plan even before starting freshman classes, me the one who told him I wouldn't marry him until he picked a major, was graduating four months after him. Oh well, it was a blessing, and I still graduated in eight semesters during which time I had a baby. By the way, I never bought clothes for my son while we were in school, everything we got was either a present, or handme downs. I think we bought a coat, some socks, and pajamas one winter. Other than that it was all given to us. My husband never got new clothes, everything he wore he either had before we were married, or were handme downs from my brothers. I never got new clothes, my maternity clothes were a gift from my mother. As vain as this may sound it was actually rather challenging for me, I enjoy new clothes, in high school I considered myself semi fashionable. I've never been trendy, but I've like to look in style. It was hard to see girls in new fashions, and think these are the same clothes I had in high school. At one point, I happened to look on the GAP website, probably to dream about the clothes I couldn't afford. The site was having a promotion, I made a few clicks, and I happened to win a $200 gift card to Gap. I guarded the gift card very carefully, and carefully kept track of how much a spent. I only bought clothing on sale, it was the only money for two years for clothing. (Actually I did buy a few baby things for my son, through the card.) Once again I truly believe that card was a tithing blessing. It is said, with obedience and faith we will be blessed beyond our imagination. Sometimes it doesn't seem right to have such temporal superficial blessings, but yet, the Lord loves us and wants to bless us even with things that don't seem that important. The only time we went out to dinner during the two years is if we got a gift card from someone. Luckily our anniversary was after Christmas. We only went to movies if we had a gift card, or it was something we really really wanted to see, then we would go to the dollar theater. I remember right after my son was born I had a real hard day, my husband came home and took me out for fast food. It seemed unreal, going out without a coupon?!
Just because money isn't as tight now doesn't mean we aren't still get blessings from paying our tithing and fast offerings. Our cars are both about 10 years old, but we still got excellent deals on them, each for a couple thousand less than market value, we were able to buy them cash, after a few very frugal months before the purchases. This past christmas we didn't know how we would afford to buy christmas presents for people, something we felt was important to do since they were coming to OUR house, to visit US. With moving, and having a baby money was tight, but we ended up with an Amazon gift card for over a $100, which is how we bought all the presents. Hope people wanted books. We were planning to buy a house a year and half ago, but after looking into it felt like it was not something we should do. That I believe was a blessing, every house we looked at has dropped in value, we would have been over extended in our payments, and belly up. We looked at buying again in August but once again felt strongly we should rent. Once again we would be over extended and belly up, houses price have dropped a ton in value we were are living. Not to mention we don't really like the area we are living, but we thought we would have loved it, it not a bad area, its just not really for families. But now after living in a house this price we realize that we want a much smaller, more modest priced house when we buy. We can make the payments at this price, but not if we have my husband do an MBA and want to pay the bills. Now as we are looking, we are looking at more modest houses, after prices have dropped, and hoping for something much lower in value than what the bank will let us get in. Our rent cost now, has helped us to understand a follow President Hinckley's advice from October 2008. I talk my father made sure I heard many times. "I recognize that it may be necessary to borrow to get a home, of course. But let us buy a home that we can afford and thus ease the payments which will constantly hang over our heads without mercy or respite for as long as 30 years." We are hoping to get a house that we will still be able to pay while my husband is doing his master's even if he loses his "real job" and he has to go back to hourly wage jobs. Hopefully we can follow President Faust's example, "President Faust would not tell you this himself. Perhaps I can tell it, and he can take it out on me afterward. He had a mortgage on his home drawing 4 percent interest. Many people would have told him he was foolish to pay off that mortgage when it carried so low a rate of interest. But the first opportunity he had to acquire some means, he and his wife determined they would pay off their mortgage. He has been free of debt since that day. That’s why he wears a smile on his face, and that’s why he whistles while he works."

Cake updated

Here is a shot of the cake the correct direction. My son though the feet were very exciting.
He was so happy to get to celebrate his birthday. He loved that he had birthday plates and such.
This is why it was a full morning. Cell phones, cookies, other birthday cupcakes. Seriously the top of the cupcakes took me two plus hours. It was insane, I don't think I'm cut out of this cake decorating business. But yet, I'm sure all my children will have equally time consuming disasters.
He was so happy to have his Uncle Daniel come, he talked for weeks about Uncle Daniel coming to his birthday. And he was also glad to have his cousin from down the street come, so he had someone to play with.

I'm free

Today my boy turned three. Although he pronounces it free.

Dang it! This picture uploaded wrong. I made my son a caterpillar cake, and then it started to have issues. It took so long to do the tops, all morning! He loved it. Then he head started to fall off. I don't know why I put it on a round cake, I should have made a rectangular cake, I wasn't thinking. Live and learn, this is only my second birthday party as a mom.
We celebrated his birthday on Saturday, with his dad and uncle who are also valentine babies.
I have a ton more pictures but I'm too tired to post anything more than one picassa post.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Vee gifts

Long story, short, or not told at all. I decided it was high time to make my son the goldbug I've been planning to do for a year. I had no idea what I was doing when I started. I just randomly cut, and sewed. Then I unpicked, and sewed some more. His antennas have a pipe cleaner in them to give them shape. One leg is quite a bit longer than the other but that's what you get with homemade toys, made by me. Not to mention his head/face is lopsided. I was laughing about it to my husband, and he said that's ok that how he looks in the book.

I decided to give it to him as a Valentine present, because for one he already had enough birthday presents. And for two, I wanted to try my hand at making doll rattles for the girl. And I thought he would appreciate getting something handmade when she got something. She isn't quite old enough yet, but soon. They are kind of ugly, but it was a first attempt, without a pattern. Sadly enough I made the green one second, but yet its the worst. They match her baby quilt.

Then I felt bad, that my husband didn't have a valentines present and the kids did. Since he is quite literally my valentine (his birthday), I decided to just make something stupid and stuffed for him, like the kids got. Sadly, his present is made with scraps. But true nonetheless.
Lastly, I made myself a present, but I didn't wrap, mine up. A valentines apron. Once again, I didn't buy trim so I had to look at what I had, and what I had was left over pink satin quilt binding trim. So that's what won.
A holiday of homemade. I should take the handmade challenge for valentines I could accomplish that! J is going to think that February is just as excited as December. Cake, cookies, presents multiple days in a row. And snow! blah, that's the most depressing part of Valentine's Day. By the way, I do think Valentine's is a stupid holiday. But I do love the valentines candy, much better actually than Christmas candy. Other than the candy and cookies its good for nothing. I never once celebrated Valentine's Day with a boyfriend, I never even had a date on Valentines until I got married. But part of the fun of kids is doing fun things on all the holidays I think. Anyway. By the way, since my husband's birthday is on the 14th, we've always celebrated valentine's day on the 15th. Some may wonder why we even celebrate, after 4 years I do, seems like his birthday is the perfect excuse to ignore it. I think it has something to do with being newlyweds 4 years ago, and just be so excited to have a date on Valentine's Day. I really couldn't tell you why, I can't even remember why. Probably has to do, with I really wanted these kissing frogs from Hallmark, so my husband planned to buy them for me, but on Valentine's Day we got about 4 feet of snow, so even with skipping class, and only going to work, he spent the whole day other than work, and pie shoving the neighborhood. Ahh, to be young and in love, I doubt my husband would still go down to the hallmark store to pick up stuff animals, and I doubt I would even ask for them anymore.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Really I did not post these pictures for the holiday. I'm posting to show off. I made a matching hair bow to match her dress. Plus I made the shoes, remember. I thought she looked so cute, with the whole matching outfit for church. Which is slightly ridiculous, since she likes to be swaddled, and stays covered in a blanket the whole time.
She cries just like me and her brother. If our next child does not have my sad genes we won't know they are upset, because Brent never looks upset, only the rest of us. She has the same sad lip that J has, that they get from me. My brothers use to tease me when I was little say, oh we've gone too far, here comes the lip.
Ha, I didn't mean to post this one. But heck, isn't she cute?
Incidentally her second cousin has the same dress.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Brent's guest post on the economy

I can't listen to Glen Beck or Sean Hannity without being horribly annoyed because they always distort the truth to further their neocon views which lead to government expansion.
In this video, Glen Beck doesn't understand the very graph he is trying to explain. He said that it was "the amount of money that we print and have in the system at any given time", however this isn't even remotely the case. If this were true then around 2006 Bill Gates personally owned nearly 10% of the currency in the system.
The "amount of money in the system" which causes inflation/deflation is the amount of printed (or physical) money multiplied by the amount of money created through the fractional reserve banking system multiplied by the rate at which it circulates. Right now we are hitting a severely deflationary market despite the fact that the incompetent Fed is trying to print their way out of a global depression. The reason for this deflationary period is three-fold.
1. Because of the housing/lending financial bubbles popping, which is leading to bank failures and the derivatives markets crashing, large quantities of money are being lost from the system (the fractional reserves portion of our currency). No physical money has been or will be lost in this process.
2. As a result of the recessionary/deflationary economic times people are attempting to hold on to more of their money slowing down the circulation and therefore deflating the currency.
3. When deflation kicks in businesses can't afford to expand and therefore make more cuts again pushing us further into deflation. As confidence drops, money is pulled out of the stock markets which is a combination of created currency and circulation gone crazy. This is leading to an all around nose dive of the total amount of money we have in the system.
So despite the fact that the Federal Reserve is printing up large sums of physical currency, they haven't even come close to printing at the rate that we are losing it. As that graph of printed money is shooting up like a weed, the amount of money in the system is dropping like a rock. Until the day when those numbers pass each other, we will see deflation rocking the United States so bad that we will be begging for the affects of inflation to kick in. Anyone in debt will basically be stretched in a financial torture rack. Anyone with a stable job and even the slightest ability to stay out of debt will be able to weather the storm rather favorably. During this time, cash will be king.
We will learn to live and cope with the deflationary market as did past generations during the Great Depression. Then one day inflation will sweep through our system like Australian wildfire incinerating the deflationary demon and completely devouring all wealth from anyone but the wise and prudent. On that day only hard tangibles will have value and the dollar will be used for toilet paper.

Pretty Much Sums it up

I have been pondering educational options for my child, since before he was born, I think in fact before I was married to his father. I'm pretty such I remember talking education options with his father before he was my husband, before we had confessed our undying love for each other, and before we ever started dating. I'm not sure if I got that order right, maybe we confessed before dating who can remember. Anyway, so this post from Pioneer Woman pretty much sums up everything I've ever thought.
Here is the short of what she said,

What I think is this:

1. Some people COULD homeschool who don’t think they can.
2. Some people DO homeschool who probably aren’t the best suited for the job.
3. Some people think PRIVATE SCHOOL is the answer to all their prayers, when really, the public school in their area is just as good.
4. On the other hand, some private schools do provide a great education.

If we buy a house in this part of this valley, then for my son we are swaying toward Spanish Immersion Charter School. I asked my husband what if the next child isn't as smart and doesn't know how to read before kindergarten than Immersion wouldn't be good. He said than we won't put her in it. My husband is so sensible always pointing out the obvious I can't see.
According to my husband he does not speak spanish well enough to teach our children. Understandable, I don't think I read well enough to teach my child. Luckily he is learning to read himself. But at the same time, my husband has plans of us all living abroad in a spanish speaking country somewhere south of here. (Which country has yet to be determined, we have lots of options.) My husband doesn't set very many goals, the ones he does set he accomplishes, I'm pretty sure even if my children don't live abroad, I will spend many a year in a country other than this. Even if we do live abroad I don't think my children really have to know spanish, just a bonus. So we figure since my son seems to be smart so far, why not try his hand at spanish. He is already doing quite well. We checked out Little Pim Spanish Videos from the library. They are FANTASTIC! We have dreams of buying them, my son does so well with them. After watching the first two videos, he was already repeating the third video. There is a lot of "educational videos" out there these days, and Little Pim is the only one I've ever seen my son interact with. Loves any and all the spanish videos he has gotten from the library. He also has a few spanish books, mostly thanks to the cheerio boxes, but I've also bought a few, and he learning all the vocabulary in the little dictionary. He hasn't mastered it, but he is picking it up way faster than I would have thought. He already knows more than me, which is easy to beat. But I did take Spanish from 3-8 grade, so when I watch the videos with him, it starts to come back. He also tells me when I pronounce it wrong. My brother reads my kid's Spanish dictionary in Portuguese. Anyway, this is a long post about nothing.
So far educational choices are not needed yet. But I fear them, like really nothing else. My greatest fear is than one day I will feel inspired to change my children's educational location, to a place I don't want. That might make no sense to anyone, but in my mind my sister understands. Really the world is filled with endless possibilities. Everyone on one side of the family homeschools, almost every female on the other side has taught public school, and so we think we should go middle ground with Private. Unfortunately we will probably never be that rich, and currently that's not really an option where we live. We like charter, in our last town we worked with kids, and we were always impressed with the kids that went to Charter schools. Not that the kids that went public were bad, some were in fact super smart. That would be the nature of children, and any education choice. Really it all has to do with strengths and personality. Some kids excel in public, and some don't. Hopefully I'll have the intuition to know where my children will excel. And hopefully it matches with what I want... but nothing in life ever does.

Will this make me sound crazy?

The Case Against the Fed The Case Against the Fed by Murray N. Rothbard
I'm sure this was a very informative, but it was also extremely dry. Even though I haven't read something this boring, since my Palestinian Hamas textbook in my senior polsci research class, I was going to prove I could finish it. I didn't finish it since I have a newborn, and Kim wanted to pick it up. (Although I'm not blaming my failure on Kim.) I didn't start reading it until it had been in my house for about a month. I read 3/4 of it in about a week before I ran out of time. It seemed to contradict the DVD The Money Masters on some points. I wonder which one has more facts straight, or if they are both sort of right in their interpretations. Maybe they weren't in contradiction on some points, I just was reading the book wrong, or maybe its been too long since I watched the movie. If I was going to suggest one, I would suggest the documentary, The Money Masters it was better at adding drama. The Fed is a scary organization so I would think it would be easy to add drama to written piece as well. Maybe I'm sounding stupid and naive by writing all this, but the book was one of the driest text books I have ever read. Although it was informative.
Like I said I would suggest The Money Masters if anyone cares to know more about the Fed, and isn't related to my husband, and already looked into matters. If you want to watch it, you can click on two dozen or so videos on YouTube to watch it, or just click once for three hours on google video. My husband and I listen to it in the car on a vacation, the visual part of the movie isn't that exciting, since its a documentary. So we uploaded the video to our mp3 player for the car, my husband couldn't watch because he was driving, and for whatever reason it made me nausea to actually look at the screen. To finish off, if you want to know the origin of Central Banking, its an interesting watch, if you are in the mood for a documentary that is about a decade old. But it is still just as relevant, anything more so, with the current recession.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

More Jacky

My Bonny Light Horseman: Being an Account of the Further Adventures of Jacky Faber, in Love and War (Bloody Jack, Book 6) My Bonny Light Horseman: Being an Account of the Further Adventures of Jacky Faber, in Love and War by L.A. Meyer
I liked this book, because I like the Jacky Faber books, but I am ready for an end to the series. In was harder for me to be involved in the plot than in book 5, but it was a quicker read. I enjoyed the book, but it wasn't the best Bloody Jack book there. I think I'm ready for her to just hook up with Jaimey and be done with it. The book is about Jacky being forced in to be a spy, and her adventures as a female spy, in some parts she is actually known to be a woman, and in other parts she is up to her usual tricks of being dressed like a man. While pretending to be the opposite sex, and still in her espionage work, she goes to war. It was interesting, I enjoyed it, it was fun, just not the best out there. When I was finished part of me wanted to be done, and part of me wanted to continue reading the life of Jacky. I very much like the series.
This was the first novel I read in 2009, and the first novel I read with a new baby. I looked forward to nursing, because it meant I got to read my book.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

More

Told you I like stripes pajamas on my babies.




I espeially like green stripes.

Three of my favorite things

Three pictures of three of my favorite things
1. my daughter
2. stripes
3. Baby nightgowns


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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Enjoying two

I'm enjoying having two children, its so much less stressful than one. Now that I have more than one I've given up being in control, and so now its easier to enjoy the fun.
I'm also enjoying my daughter being two months old (almost), she is almost getting fun. I said that to my husband the other day, don't you think N is almost getting fun? He said she is getting there but not there yet. Things she does that I love right now.
  • She adores her dad, always has since before she was born. For almost the past month now, she loves to talk to her dad. She smiles and coos at him the whole time. She also copies his facial expressions which makes him laugh.
  • Like I said she has always been a daddy's girl, she would get very excited in the womb to hear her dad talk to me.
  • The other day I was holding her against my shoulder, and Brent was a few inches in front of us, she slowly fell backwards than twisted around to try to cuddle with him, while I was still holding her. We decided to let her win, and let her dad hold her.
  • She really does adore her dad. The children and I were in J's bed reading, next to his pillow are pictures of dad (we hung them while dad was learning to shoot, to help J miss dad less) N saw the dad pictures, and immediately started smiling, cooing, and almost laughing. She was so happy to see those pictures.
  • Did I mention her cooing, I'm loving the cooing.
  • And the smiling.
  • She loves her older brother, for about a month now she loves to watch him do all the things he does. She watches him with an eagle eye when she is awake.
  • Plus her big brother gives her the most adorable kisses. Sunday she was laying on the couch, he went over to her and gave her "little Eskimo kisses".
  • She loves to read, she watches in amazement when she happens to be awake when I'm reading to her big brother. She also loved to hear me read when she was in the womb. (I know what all you women who have also had babies are thinking, maybe she was just active when you were still. No, she had an active when still movements, and she had excited movements. They were different trust me.) Apparently she also likes being read to about linux, at least that's what her dad says.
  • Plus I love when my husband poses our infants, he use to do it with the boy, now he is starting to do it with the girl.
  • She likes to stare at venetian blinds.
  • She still likes to be swaddled.
  • She is starting to enjoy her baths. She at least no longer screams, cries, whines, or fusses during them now. It was a long journey, of 4 different stages before we got to this point.
  • She still has that new baby smell
  • She is getting fat, at least her face, the rest of her is just very long.
  • People say she looks like me.
  • But she has her daddy's ears. There is something about that, that just makes me giddy.
(I know this picture is weird, its headband prep. And it looks like her face is wrapped up but I promise its not. None the less it shows her ear. The other day, J was telling me all the things that his sister has that are little, little hands, little etc, little ears. Then he said he had big ears. That made me laugh, because he has my ears, and we both have super little ears. His ears and his sisters ears are the same size, if anything hers are bigger. My husband and I put the kids ears next to each other and eyeballed measurements. I doubt my daughters ears are big, maybe they are, but my husband's ears aren't big they are just normal size.)