Thursday, March 31, 2011

Updates on the Two Year Old

Lastly, the other day I asked a friend to watch her while I went to preschool co-op with J.  My old babysitter moved so this was the first time this friend watched her.  When she dropped her off, she said, she's so dainty.  Its so cute! I said I know isn't she?!  I don't think I'm dainty at all, so I love it with her! But its true she is just naturally dainty, I love it!
 My Nan loves butterflies, she loves to dress as one and find them and each time she says, "buh-her-bye." Its so adorable in my opinion, the way she says it.  This girl is all about function over form, if its uncomfortable she is not doing it, except she will wear her "butterfly" wings in her carseat?!  My real favorite is when she finds a blue butterfly.
This picture was taken back in January.  My cousin's wife put a picture of their little girl going to a pink birthday part in a pink dress and pink tights.  I thought it was so cute, I wanted to copy it and we just happened to have the right hand me downs in the closet.  I would have never thought on solid color, but its so cute on a little girl. Especially pale pink on a blondie.  (Here is the inspiration, she is the one on the left. I thought there was a picture of her walking.)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My house

I officially own a house.  Or I officially now have a mortgage for a house, that I could potential own in 2041.

Would you like to hear about my house?  There has been a lot of talk but not a lot of facts.
It is barely more than 2,000 sq ft, including the basement.  Which at the fear of sounding ungrateful, its not very big for a two story house with a basement. To me it seems like a wide townhouse, except its on a quarter acre of land instead of connected to the next house. We are one of the smallest and lowest priced houses in the development. Yes, you heard right my husband is moving to a housing development, I never thought that would happen. Neighborhood yes, but housing development with a sign in front?! The house was built in 1999, and the previous owners foreclosed, and we bought it from the bank.  The main floor has a living room, a dinning room, a kitchen, and a half bath/laundry closet.  The upstairs has three bedrooms and two full bathrooms.  The basement is one full size rec room, which we could add a forth bedroom if we wanted to and make the rec room smaller, since the electrical is separate, with another full bath (which will have a child lock on it, I'm not cleaning four bathrooms), utility closet, and another closet. Its 90% finished which means its all finished but the utility closet.  One of the best parts of the house is the three car garage. Two of the worst is the lack of storage and the lack of patio.  All it is a 10x10 concrete slab in the back. Good news is the roof was replaced a few years ago, bad news the hot water heater is on the end of its life, heres hoping the hot water heater, the dishwasher and stove all break in the first year under the home warranty.  Its in a great school district which is perfect for my precocious 5 year old, and for the resale value. Down side we have some of the highest property taxes in the area, but one of the reasons we chose it was for the school district knowing full well how much it cost. The church Primary he will be attending at church as over 100 kids in it.  I don't know if that is good or scary, we have never lived in a ward with more than 40 kids in the primary. Here is the floor plan because I love floor plans, whether its the house I own or not.

Monday, March 28, 2011

More Hair

I've been meaning to post this for a while now.  This was my hair inspiration:

I have no idea if it actually looks this this or not.  I think my stylist was scared to actually cut it this short, I kept telling her more, more, until I gave up. And now its been a month so its really not short anymore.  I also don't think I have the right type of product.  But other than that, I think it might actually be close.  I use 'Curly Sexy Hair' Curling Creme and it works ok, as long as I go light so my hair isn't crunchy.  I really love the product in my son's hair.  It defines his curls, without it looks like he has product in his hair, it makes it look very natural just without the frizzy fuzz that comes from bedhead.
I use to think this this was the same hair cut, just curly instead of natural, but now I don't think it is, its longer. Unless she has fake temporary hair extensions which I recently read is used by all stars on red carpet affairs.  I don't know, when my hair actually curls instead of waves it looks quites similar.
I've only blow dried my hair straight once since I cut it off last month.  Thats why I was so excited when I saw the first picture of Kiera, because I get so tired of blow drying my short hair, so I was excited to find a style that isn't straight. 
The other day I thought hmm?  I wonder if my hair looks like doo-doo, everyday? Since I put some light gel in it and just go.  Maybe? Oh well.  I'm content, and my husband likes me. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Lots of Books, its been awhile

Turns out I haven't posted any books I've read on my blog since the middle of January I've read a lot of book since then.
Driven: An AutobiographyDriven: An Autobiography by Larry H. Miller
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A few months ago my grandma had me read chapter 7: Numbers when she was reading this Biography, and it was quite interesting, and parts of it reminded me of someone I know, so a few weeks ago I decided to pick this book up from the Library.  The first two Parts of this book were simply fascinating to me, and really enjoyed reading the beginning of the book.  Once they got to the Jazz my interested started to wain because I care so little about sports.  The rest of the book from there had interesting parts and scanned other parts.
I'm glad I read the book in its entirety because he has a chapter about his friendship with David McCullough the author of 1776 and John Adams.  "David was saddened that many students were no longer choosing a liberal arts education and that history was no longer required for graduation for many universities and colleges. (211)" That made me feel better about myself since I have an undergraduate degree in Political Science with a minor in History.  I've always been taught that liberal arts degrees are worthless and we should all be studying math in science.  While I agree we need strong endowments to encourage growth in science, I think thats a good point, we also need to remember our history. Science is the future, history is the past and they are both important.  Larry H. Milller also wrote that Miracle at Philadelphia by Catherine Drinker Bowen was one of his favorite books.

Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Frontlines of the New Girlie-Girl CultureCinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Frontlines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture by Peggy Orenstein

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book was everything a book should be I laughed, cried, and gobbled up obscure out of context statistics. I questioned all my purchasing power as a parent. I remembered the little girl I use to be, who still wanted a lot of (really expensive) American Doll toys after she had declared herself too old. (Who knows if I verbally declared it, I did it my head.) I came to terms with my buying my children licensed characters toys. It made me regret buying a pink tricycle (then again I already did), wish the fairy wings were blue, and glad I haven't bought my daughter pink rain boots since she enjoys her unisex/boy color boots plenty. The book is pretty much about how pink has taken over everything girl and in an effort to keep our daughters innocent we oversexualize them. Yes, that is contradictory, the whole point of the book. Being a woman is a very confusing a social context whether we are living in a post feminist world or 1950s, being a women has not gotten any easier. Women are suppose to be strong and gentle? A women either spends too much time working and being "manly", or too much time in the kitchen giving up what her feminist forbears fought for. I found the book fascinating, it make reflected on my childhood, and teenage life, and how I'm currently raising and planning to raise both my daughter and also my son. I don't think you can raise a well rounded male without teaching him women are not sex objects because the book has prime examples we aren't teaching our daughters how respect themselves. That being said I don't think everything girly and pink is wrong, I just don't think I need to buy everything in two just because I had a girl after a boy. My daughter has plenty of pink clothes, and even though color is a societal pressure I'm really quite confused. Since my daughter had very little pink as a infant, other than clothes, she has unisex carseats (navy blue), strollers, and I put her in as much purple as I could afford. How come before she was a year and half she had unmistakably picked pink her favorite color? Luckily she doesn't know toys come in all pink, and she has a brother so she can learn good spatial skills as she plays with all the cars and blocks. The author and I disagree with cooking pots. She sees them as a sexist toys, where I see them as a unisex toy, every boy under 5 that has come in my house has played with our (non-pink) kitchen set just like every girl. But maybe that is the point, kitchen sets, and brown blocks can both be unisex toys. Children who play well with the opposite sex grow up to be better human beings as they are better at relating, understand and communicated with the opposite sex.
I don't agree with everything, as the author and I have different moral opinions. Although I will say the author and I both agree women are not meant to be a male's sex object. Let that be a disclaimer if you have a problem reading about sexual context in a modern world this book is not for you. But those sections are such small parts of the over all argument.

Jane Austen Ruined My LifeJane Austen Ruined My Life by Beth Pattillo

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed the second book Pattillo wrote so I checked out the first. It took me a little longer to get into this one, but I throughly enjoyed this book too. The book is about a woman realizing that life is not the Disney princess syndrome. Although she blames it on Jane Austen, life is not just getting to happily ever after. Life goes on after that, it everything takes works. Of course there is the fictional story about Jane Austen and how it corresponding with the the main character's life. It was a fun little pretend read. The moral of the story is that Jane Austen knew life was more than just happily ever after, so why don't her readers.

Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart: A NovelMr. Darcy Broke My Heart: A Novel by Beth Pattillo

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was a shameless guilty pleasure that I grabbed off the display shelf on the way to check out in the library. Its always embarrassing to pick up a book that has a heart romance sticker on the spine. But it was a good quick read, I enjoyed this Jane Austen spoof more than the other few I've read. Its of course about a girl who comes across her own Mr. Darcy in her life. I guess you could guess what happened by the title, which might be one of the reason I enjoyed this book. I enjoy Pride and Prejudice as much as the next girl, but I don't really think Mr. Darcy is the Greek god everyone makes him out to be. In fact Mr. Darcy is a jerk, which is the point of Pride and Prejudice in my opinion. I enjoyed the book about a Mr. Darcy who wasn't so fantastic. In the rest of the spoofs I've read I think the authors miss the point that Mr. Darcy isn't perfect. The other half of the plot is Claire the main character going to Oxford for a Pride and Prejudice conference and coming across the original copy of First Impressions. Although it served the purpose for this spoof novel, and it was a fun fairy tale, there were some very big flaws by Pattillo the author. For example the first and last paragraph in her fictional First Impressions have nothing to do with the rest of the novel. But I still enjoyed the book.

Luka and the Fire of LifeLuka and the Fire of Life by Salman Rushdie

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I think I enjoyed this book. I wanted to read it but every time I did I fell asleep after 20 pages. I think that has more do with my life than the book. I enjoyed this book much more than the Haroun and the Stories of the Sea. At the very end of the book, I realized one of the reasons I probably enjoyed the book. Its about "a child who defies Time's power just by being born, and make us all young again". In that young Luka and I have something in common, since I'm a child born to not so young parents to make them young again. My whole life I remember my mom telling me I kept her young. Although my mom was much younger than Luka's parents. I quite enjoyed the second half of the book when all the old creatures of past cultures mythologies showed up. I do love a book set currently with stories of old traditions, the book has everything from Nordic gods, to Native American tribes gods, to Pacific Island gods, to Aztecs, to Japanese, to of course Greek, Roman, and Egyptian gods, and everything in-between. What I didn't really like about the book was the author trying to make it like a video game. Since I heard a interview with the author about the book, I knew it would be the case, and it a minor part of the plot, but I thought it was unneeded, and annoying. But I don't really enjoy video games so maybe other readers felt different. I will also say I found the discussion on security quite entertaining, since my husband always preaches to me about internet security. Lastly, the book also has a lot of left handed power for all you lefties out there feeling neglected.

Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of ThingsStuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I thought this book was amazing, I gobbled it up, I read it in one weekend. I found every case study so fascinating. I love case studies, but not really scientific explanations, so this book was good for me. Only one textbooky chapter and the rest was story after story. It made me question everything, could I hoard, could my husband, is my child destine? It was scary because I share many personality traits with some of the hoarders explained in the book, I am very wordy, I remember everything about the objects in my house, I feel guilty getting rid of presents people have given me, even years after the occasion. But I have way too much of my paternal grandma inside of me I could never start hoarding, I love clean rooms.
The worst part of the book for me though was wondering was I worried about this disease or was I just reading it for the entertainment sake? Mental illness has seem to have come into vogue in the entertainment realm, and I sincerely hope I was not reading it for entertainment. For many years I planned on going into psychology so I have always been interested in books like this. The main reason I read this was as a cautious worried mother. Wondering where do we stand? After I finished it gave me another reason to pray my children never go through a major trauma because that seems to offset most mental illness. But I think I only know collectors. (My rudimentary understanding is collecting does not interfere with daily living, while compulsive hoarders can barely live amongst their stuff.) I have a collector in my house, and he seems to be fine with me thinning his treasure boxes, as long as they stay mostly full. A trait that hoarders do not share, as long as some is saved, I can get rid of plenty. Thank goodness. I sincerely felt bad for the family members that have to deal with loved ones who compulsively hoard.

Cornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset SistersCornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset Sisters by Lesley M.M. Blume

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This was another computerized suggestion for me. I didn't enjoy this one as much as the JF I've read this month. The other ones I thought had a broad appeal, while this one was really only for a 12 year old girl. Not to mention the dog on the cover was so ugly I almost returned it to the library without reading it so I wouldn't have look at it, but the font was cute enough I thought I'd give it a try. Yes, I always judge books by their covers. The book is about a lonely only child who has no friends; her elderly neighbor befriends her and gives her some much needed confidence. Like I said I think it would be very appealing to a younger girl who is feeling a little self-conscious, which would probably be every girl. But I guess I've grown up too much over the years to see the entertainment in this book. Not to mention I had good writing but not amazing writing. It was not brood over the word selection enjoying each morsel of text. Long and short, the book wasn't bad.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Where I'm going with my credo....
  While falling asleep a few nights ago, I've thought I want to think of attributes and virtues that we are naturally good at.  So I thought what is one of Brent's strongest qualities, and scribbled it down in the dark in hopes of not bothering his sleep.  What about Nan?  J? Me????.  What about our legacies?  What did our parents instill in us, my parents, Brent's parents?  What about their parents our grandparents?  Luckily a lot of the qualities overlap on people, and I figure Brent will cut half.
Then I also decided to channel, the Thirteenth Article of Faith.  Oh that is where I regained my vigor, Brent's speaking assignment. Also Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, then I stretched and thought, maybe the Boy Scout Law.  I'm really trying to research this.  I only plan on writing one of these,  I want to write this once, and then always fit us as life continues, no matter where life takes us. I should also read our PB, you know what that stands for.
I also thought of a lot of virtues that great, but decided not to list them.  I want this to be realistic.  Friendly for example.  We like friends, we love talking with people, we like small dinner parties but we are not really the type of people that start talking to the random person in the grocery store.  It takes a lot of effort on my part to be friendly to the person next to me in church that I don't know.  I guess outgoing is the actual word.  We can be friendly, but we will never be outgoing. I wanted to focus on things we naturally are, and improve and become better in, not things that are just not our personality.  That might not make sense you. But remember last post, I wrote, "We also talked about companies with mission statements who's action are pretty contradictory." I don't want to set this lofty credo with virtues we will never obtain in our mortal life time, and friendly to strangers will never fit that bill. I didn't want my children to feel overburdened by this their whole lives, since none of us are outgoing so friendly never even made the list. Friendly is just an example, I thought of all types of things that I have since forgotten about.
 Recently a friend on FB posted a link to this blog post that inspired me, even though they aren't really virtues, and slightly different than what I'm trying to accomplish. By the way, this is obviously longer than We are a Family of Integrity, or Having Fun Doing the Right Thing, but it won't be too long, its not going to be pages, or even paragraphs.  But maybe one paragraph, or a few sentences, at the least a very long run on sentence. Actually it is the last.
The real question in all of this, is will all my faithful readers be disappointed if I don't post the end product?  I don't think I am going to.  You'll just have to visit me in our new house to see it.  Or email me. Although maybe I post a Wordle, because they are so dang fun.

To me this also all has to do with these two blog posts that were written in September and just barely posted.
Hopes and Dreams

Mission Statements

Growing up every time I did something wrong it seems like my mother told me "We are a Family of Integrity."  That is the family motto she and my dad set, and I wasn't an overly obedient child, so let me assure you I hated hearing that phrase.  Some children seem to have a hard time being obedient, like as hard as they try they just keep making mistakes.  I was not that child, if I disobeyed I did it with a clear idea of what I did. Now my mother would tell you I was mostly a good child, which I'm sure is true, but sometimes I loved being contrary, and it seemed like the times I choose to be contrary were the times my mother followed up with "We are a Family of Integrity", which just made me more angry, because how can you be contrary when you mother just told you that as a family we adhere to strict moral and ethical principles.  I also quickly learned that saying you didn't want to be part of a Family of Integrity was not allowed.  You may be allowed to disobey rules and suffer consequences, but not having Integrity was strictly unacceptable.
The point of all this, during my contrary years I despised that phrase but now as a parent I see why my mother always seemed to be quoting it to me when I was in middle school.
At least one of my brothers' families has made a family motto for his family, and over the last 5 or so years I've thrown the idea out to my husband.  All the ideas I roughly thrown out over the years seemed to be wrong for my husband's vision of our family. Then last year for my birthday we went out to Tucanos and as we were waiting for a table we noticed the mission statement on the wall for Tucanos Inc or whatever the official title of the company is.  At the time, my husband was learning about company mission statements in one of his business classes and so this provided us with a nice conversation.  For class he had recently read some articles about various companies (Johnson and Johnson) and their commitment to following their mission statements. So that filled with more vigor to give our family a purpose.  But we also talked about companies with mission statements who's actions are pretty contradictory. Also back in September I had a few conversations with various people about what legacy, traditions and goals we have for  our individual families.
 I was filled with new vigor but not a lot because I haven't done anything about it in 6 months. Some where along the lines, in the midst of my brain going loopy from all the legal gargon of house contracts. I've restarted my quest. Actually it the thought of a new start and beginning.  What legacy do I want my children to remember, since we are starting in on the chapter of life that J might actually remember.  We moved a lot over the past few years, but as adults my children won't remember any of it, this house we are moving into will be the beginning of their memories.  Metaphorically where are we going as a family with this fresh start?
 Although it turns out Johnson and Johnson has a credo not a mission statement.  And that seems to ring a bell from my birthday date, we decided a family motto isn't working since I've yet to come up with something.  Mission statements are... I have no idea the definition, but credo might be us?  We agreed what format we want it to take, and decided, the best chance of success is me writing an overly long rough draft and Brent cutting what he doesn't like.  Then it will be perfect for our family. At least that is what we agreed on last September, but maybe Brent was just high off the lack of children in our presence since we actually had a babysitter.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Rich People

My son's best friend in preschool lives in a different school district but we live in one of the few school districts that ofter preschool in our state, so he applied and was accepted to preschool.  His friend lives in my favorite part of the state.  All these beautiful older homes, that are ghastly expensive, well maintained and wonderfully updated inside.  They have beautiful mature neat green yards, with trees lining the sidewalks.  If this area of town remains nice over the next 40 years like it did over the last 60 years, I totally want to retire here, because I love it so much.  As we drove through the neighborhoods to get to J's house. Yes, J's friend's name starts with a J too.  I saw these people walking down the street.  The women had fitted down jackets on, and were pushing jogging strollers as they strolled down the street with their house. They overwhelmed me.
I said, Brent do you ever wonder why rich people are so active?  (Rich as in upper middle class neighborhoods, where house is average $300K for a small three bed.)
He said no, I wonder why poor people aren't more active.
Really I asked? Did you see those girls in those down or like-down jackets pushing the jogging strollers?
He said what do you think we'll look like once we move?  Its a nice neighborhood we are buying in.  When the weather is good we always go for walks.
Good point, he won. I wish we were more active, but we active enough, and have great health. Our idea of fun is browsing REI.
So it turns out I hate my tall thin self, and find myself vastly overwhelming. Dang it.
Although not too overwhelming, you'll rarely see me out with another girl. I grew up with brothers. I find girls in large groups overwhelming. Never once attended a GNO, well except in high school as a boycott to school sanctioned activities.

Monday, March 21, 2011


Yesterday I went to pick my two year old up from Nursery in church. As she ran toward me her teachers said, where's your picture? She quickly turned around and said Dah-dee! Grabbed her picture and brought it to me, pointing, saying, Dah-dee, Dah-dee!

Apparently she colored her happy face to look like daddy. She was so proud to show it to me, and especially her daddy. Personally I think it is a pretty good likeness, he has black hair, eyes and mouth, just like in real life.

One more story about my daughter at church.  We are trying to encourage her talk, and use language, which includes a weekly speech class with Aunt Danna our resident speech pathologist.  Yesterday during church I was interacting with my daughter, whispering to her when her play included looking at me.  We had three different colored bunnies at church.  Nan was showing me the blue one, saying blue, and then showing the pink, trying to say pink.  I leaned over to her, and whispered you're right, thank you for talking.  Then irony of the situation hit me.  What mother whispers to her child thank you for talking during church?  Apparently a mother who is desperate to hear her daughter to communicate through other means than crying.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

No Staycation

I've always wanted take a staycation.  We seem to go on vacation all the time and still never use up all of Brent's time off.  (He racks up a lot of comp time and vacations usually use up that, barely touchs time off.)  I've always wanted a staycation, go see all the local attractions eat out as often as we want or not want, sleep in the comfort of our own bed, have the kids in their own room, not shoved against us in a tent or hotel room, and then actually sleep in.  But atlas that has no appeal to my husband. We could even catch a movie or two and still remain under budget.
I was scarred hearing the fictional story of two men that drove across the country in different directions and happened to meet at the Grand Canyon  but had never seen any attractions in their home states.
I wanted to do everything there was to do here. I didn't want to move away and someone say, oh I love such and such, we always do that at my family reunion, have you been?  And then have to say no. (I have an exception, I could careless about any resort/theme park/water park type thing.) So last year on our spring break camping trip I made a list of things I still needed to do, before we moved. I had no moved date set in the future but I knew it would come eventually.  And now we are moving and I did hardly any on my list.
Here is what I still have yet to do:
Antelope Island
Salt Flats
Any part of the Great Salt Lake for that matter
The Planetarium
Ensign Peak
Great Basin National Park
Dinosaur National Park
The last two are hardly done from the comfort of my own home, but you know.  I also have already been to Dinosaur National Park before, but my kids love fossils and Dinosaur Bones so I want to take them.

I actually have seen most of the stuff there is to see in my opinion, but never from the comfort of my own staycation, mostly with just the kids.  Brent has interests in going to museums and such in other cities, but not much here. Although he has been to plenty with us.  I plan what I'm going to do then tell him, and sometimes he comes and sometimes he doesn't.
The only thing I feel bad about not doing is Ensign Peak.  I really wanted to hike Ensign Peak since it is referenced in conference all the time.  I also wish I would have had time to take my family to the Planetarium, but there are Planetariums in other places too. There is also a good chance I can do everything on my list because I will be back to visit. But man I feel lame I never hiked Ensign Peak.
Oh I'm also planning to take my children to the Bean Museum in BYU during all the BYU graduation/commission weekend.  We have never been to the Bean Museum, everyone says its great and free. Even if we even run in for two minutes.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Family Date Night

We are on a budget, because of the house and moving. I half my grocery bill and currently I really don't buy anything else, or than gas and diapers. Anytime I get the itch to buy, I think paint cans. But when Brent came home from work yesterday asking do you want to go see Tangled?  I jumped! I have been begging to go since January.  Even though we are on a tight budget, we decided we would spurge, and buy a few hamburgers and French fries first. We got the kids in the car, everyone was excited. Then we didn't even make it around the block when I said, we should have just spent the same amount of money, we are spending tonight to pre-ordered it on Blu-ray from Amazon, it would look better on blu-ray on our TV than at the dollar theater. Brent asked do you want to? I said, it comes out in two weeks. Brent asked again do you want to? I said maybe... but the kids are excited.  He said thats ok, let's do that instead, it will look better on our TV.  I had already planned what to cook for dinner, but I hadn't started so we went home and I started.  We turned around before we even made it to a stoplight.  We watched a Neflix movie and had a picnic in the living room.  J was disappointed he didn't get a hamburger, while Nan was still excited, we kept asking once we got home who is having fun?! She kept saying, ME! She didn't know what she was missing unlike her brother. But they both enjoyed dinner, while watching G force on Netflix instant view, so it was a fun night even if it took a different turn.  But as I cooked dinner, I felt pathetic and kept laughing, my poor children, their parents are so frugal its just not fun.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Part 2, Of wondering where we have been

I also cut my hair. I took this picture myself on the way out the door running my son to preschool. I thought man, I wish my hair looked that good at my cousin's wedding. Some days, my hair naturally looks great and some days it looks terrible, and I have no skills to improve it. The best thing about this picture is its slight overexposed so you can't see my chronic dark circles under my eyes.
Also we were asked to talk in church last sunday, I obviously didn't talk I wasn't there. But my husband said yes he would. I said you are crazy what about the kids he said ah, I'll figure it out. Well he showed up to sacrament meeting and the Bishop arranged for a couple to watch our kids. So he totally lucked out, because he didn't have to take care of them by himself. In fact he didn't even have to take care of them, he sat on the stand while someone else took care of them. Oh course since they were slightly nervous not being with their parents they were perfect. Then my husband really lucked out the guy before him took all the time but five minutes. So my husband gave a super short talk and didn't have to watch the kids while I was out of town.

My daughter also got her hair cut, which she wasn't too trilled about, but it was a huge improvement. It should have been cut 6 weeks ago. I think all her hair has finally grown in. Unfortunately her hair isn't as A line as I would have liked.  The back length is great, but I like it wrap around her ears and its too short for that.
Here is the before, since the back has been there forever, and the front is still growing in, she was channeling some Mrs. Brady.

Ah, but the best story by far I almost forgot about.  The day I was flying out to my cousin's wedding, my daughter literally spilled milk everywhere on the floor.  Apparently no one noticed but mom, so even though I have to leave for the airport in 10 minutes, I wipe it up then grab the mop.  This was all very exciting to the kids, I normally mop after they go to bed.  So once I finished I let them use it while I finished getting all my stuff together.  Well next thing I know, when I walk back into the kitchen they are moping the table!  Ahh! gross.  So I grab the mop then disinfect the table, and pretty much grab my suitcase and run out the door.  It was a liberating morning, to say the least.

Not used up

You know the old phrase "Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without"
In a way it plagued me. I'm fairly decent at doing without, at least I think.  I had no problems giving away perfectly good quality things, but if the things weren't a complete set or were only half broken or had some life left in them, I couldn't get rid of it.  I thought about that object not completely used up, and worn out sitting in a land fill and it plagued me, thinking that I had not been as completely industrious as I could. I would give away good toys because our toy boxes were overflowing and leave mismatched half broken toys in their place. I figured I could give away good toys, but second hand stores always have signs saying no broken things or garbage. Finally after months, years, who knows how long of this craziness my husband called me on it.  
It wasn't until he called me on it I realized it for the craziness that is it.  I have since realized it better to plague the landfill than my house and/or toy boxes.  For about the last 6 months, maybe a year I've started to adopt what I call the Teresa test.  I stand over the garage can, hold something in my hand and think if I were Teresa what would I do with it?  And almost inevitably it is throw it away.  Teresa is too smart to clutter her house with broken things. Considering I rarely buy my children toys, and I rarely buy them clothes, yet all the toy boxes and all the dressers are overflowing with items, I don't feel like giving away good quality stuff or throwing away broken things isn't industrious.  Life has changed, and industrious in the home has a different meaning. At least in my opinion.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Do you wonder

Do any of you out there wonder where I am?  When I'm at the computer I have writer's block and am incapable of coming up with a blogpost.  But when I'm offline my brain reels with me.
But over all I guess I'm busy.  I spend my mornings as a family secretary, buying a house is a part time job I spend most mornings, either on the phone, or on the computer researching.  Luckily my afternoons are free, I will admit I've spend some days, starring at the computer, looking at kitchens, paint jobs, and furniture, but mostly I'm exhausted.  I put my daughter down for a nap, get my son settle, read for 20 minutes and then nap for two hours everyday.  I go to sleep with my husband at 11 when he gets home and then drag my butt out of bed every morning.  I'm just so exhausted.  Brent has three classes, instead of two class this semester so we only see Brent on Tuesday nights, Friday nights and during the weekend. Last weekend I went to Arizona to see my cousin married, so its been awhile since I've spent time with my husband other than reading contracts and signing papers.  Since he has his new job he is always at the office so we don't even get to eat dinner with him, the kids never see him except Tuesday night and during the weekend. But by now they are hardened and don't even seem to notice.
Yup, last weekend the tables turned, Brent has never watched the kids that long without me, I on the other hand have weathered plenty of business trips and gun camps while he goes and plays with his siblings.  So I was glad the tables were turned and he got his chance.  He never thought it was easy for me when he left, but now he'll have empathy instead of just sympathy.  I asked him how it went, as in how did he survive.  He said something to the effect it was constant all the time.  I said yeah, its hard to do it day after day with no breaks.  No one take over.  He said, "yeahh"
If I'm not sleeping or on the phone, I'm reading.  I of course have a book to read, but I'm also quite obsessive with magazines these days.  But like I said never parenting magazines.  I of course read the TIME each week.  I started reading the Smithsonian cover to cover each month, and it fascinates me more than I would ever imagine.  I started reading Whole Living each month.  I also get Martha Stewart and Better Homes and Gardens, but I don't even read half of the articles.  But I started to Redbook for free.  Bizarrely enough I read it cover to cover the first week I get it.  Thats embarrassing to admit.  So what is that three full magazines a month, plus the TIME weekly.  I'm just absorbing a lot of media outlets right now.  I wish I read the Ensign cover to cover each month, but well... I started giving the kids The Friend to flip through so they can be like me while we eat lunch. (I never read normal books or magazines on sunday, I've been reading other things on Sunday, I just never get to the Ensign.) Its been great, to give them the Friend because then we have great conversation about the church based on the pictures they see, and what they can do to be better people.  Have I ever mention my son is precocious?  When I think of a way to describe my son, I always think of Mormon 1:2, "I perceive that thou art a sober child, and art quick to observe;" I'm not quite sure why he is quite the way he is, or why he is sober, but I sure do love him.  The other day my neighbor told me, when he was over playing all of sudden he got up and put on his shoes.  Her son, his friend asked where he was going, he said, I have a lot to do today, and I only planned to stay a little bit, and its been a little bit.  
And that is our life lately.
I barely even mentioned my cousin's wedding.  I was so glad I was there, it was so great to see some of my cousins I haven't seen in a long time.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Giving Up

I've had two teeny dresses, two small white oxfords and an apron on my ironing board for a month.  I'm giving up, I'm not going to iron them.  Which is sad, I come from a long line of ironing, on both sides of my gene pool.  But I'm the black sheep I guess, or the generation of change to give up.  I ironed, my brothers ironed, my mother of course ironed.  But then I married my husband and he does not come from a long line of ironing.  I have no idea what is linage of ironing is, but I know his mother did not iron, and his best friend's mother taught him to buy wrinkle resistance clothing.  So then I gave up, I ironed my husband's shirt once years after being married.  Well first I left his white shirt in the drier for two days, then hung it up, in Church I was embarrassed.  So the following week I ironed it.  When proudly whispered to him that I ironed his shirt, he looked at me confusedly and asked why. Clearly my husband is a lost ironing cause, he can't help it. All the influential mothers in his life taught him to not expect such things from his wife of the 21st century.  And right they were in that influence.  But I had plans to teach my children the beauty of a well ironed church outfit.  But I've failed and giving up, the dresses are getting hung up.  Maybe next time.
Maybe once we moved, I'll set ironing as a goal, and maybe I'll be obsessed with counting my pennies, and saving them for yet another can of paint. A bank owned property needs a lot of cans of paint.

Truth be told I'm on top of my ironing as long as I sew.  No sewing means no ironed clothes.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


I love how clueless my husband is about cultural things.  Last night my husband came home from a work dinner outing thing. Our conversation went like this:

Brent: I brought you my french fries, you'll like them, you'll want to eat them tonight.
Me:  Ok, where did you go tonight anyway?
B: Ruby Tuesday's.
My thoughts went something like this:  Really?  You think I'll like lame food from Ruby Tuesdays? But I appreciated the gesture and didn't complain.  When I finally got around to reheated them, the box said Ruby River Steak House.  Oh, that made sense, I could see a Steak House having really good fries.

The conversation continued,
Me: You know you went to Ruby River Steak House tonight not Ruby Tuesdays.
B:  Really?  Why did they keep talking about Ruby Tuesdays on Tuesday?
Me: Did you they actually say that?
B: I don't know they talked about something with Tuesday.
Me: Might it be that it is Fat Tuesday today?
B: What is Fat Tuesday?
Me: Mardi Gras.
B: Blank stare.
Me: Carnival?
B: More blank stares.
Me: Fat Tuesday is the last day of Mardi Gras, which you know as Carnival. Lent starts tomorrow.
B: Registering at the word Carnival, more blank stares wondering why anyone other than Catholics care.

I loved this conversation.  The thing with my husband and most of his family is they are totally not connected to what society deems important.  When you get to know them you might wonder why they don't cultural references.  But I've known my husband long enough to just know who he is, and to find his quirks endearing.  I found the conversation quite amusing in a good way. I appreciate that one, my husband had no idea what restaurant he ate at, and two that he ignored all media sources from Facebook, to the Radio all day, that he never took the time to listen to the mindless babble of the world.


(if you are reading this on a RSS feed, this is old, i forgot to push the orange button)
Last night Brent and I stayed up way too late, signing millions of papers from our mortgage broker. Niether of us were happy, we were both tired and had no desire to read what we already knew, we are legally required to pay our mortgage.   But the mood greately improved once we got to my husband's race.  It was a two part question for us both of us.  Question One, Hispanic/Latino Orgin?  The banker marked a negative for me.  But not my dear German desented husband.  According to her he is Latino.  It made me so happy, I'm laughing as I type this.  Question two, Race, we were both marked as white.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Second Story

Here is the second story from the business trip, the third story is the story of the house and probably will never make it on my blog, at least not in its entirety.

The first night I was in Colorado Brent and I rented Date Night.  I can't recommend it to anyone because it was quite PG-13, but funny.  The best part was when Steve Carell's character asks his wife Tina Fey if she every fantasizes about another man.  She says, No, I just want to go to a room all by myself, not take care of anyone,  and listen to the quiet.  (Its sounds a lot better in the movie.) Carell says that's just weird.  Then she goes off about taking care of the kids, the house, and her job, and how every night her kids are shocked they have to put on their pajamas.  Like they've never heard they are going to put pajamas on before. It also makes it funny because she emphases the "ja" Although I will say I thought that was the funniest part of the movie, and all of Carell's characters annoy my husband and I.
Then next day Brent went to work, and I stayed in our hotel room.  I lived the dream!  I didn't take care of anyone, I read a book (or two), no one wiped boogers on me, no talked to me, asked questions, or whined to me. I didn't have to talk, and most importantly no one screamed!  It was really quite wonderful.  But I'll be honest, I've never been so excited for Brent to get off work and he finished at 3 pm that day.  I probably could have handled another day of solitude.  But more than that, and I would have gone stir crazy.  Don't get me wrong, I loved that day, it was so wonderful, to not talk at all!  But a strange thing happened.  Instead of sitting reading my book on my wonderful Nook that my wonderful husband bought me for Christmas, I turned on the TV, and let Buffy the Vampire Slayer Marathon run in the background while I read my book.  I finally had silence, and it was almost too silent.  Its embarrassing, but I'll be he honest.  (Nothing but full discloser on this blog.)

Friday, March 4, 2011


First off, just so no one feels left out we are under contract with a house out of state, if you want to know more about it you'll have to email me. Things can still fall through, but I decided I don't mind going public.

My daughter who barely talks except as speech class, amazed me yesterday.  She wanted her dress up clothes on, specifically her fairy wings.  I asked her if she was a fairy, she replied, "no, butterfly"  Sure it wasn't that clear, but I understood. She has never said anything like that.  The most contrary amount of communication she normal has done is shaking her head no, saying mama, when Brent asks her something.  Other than that is screaming and hitting. She is totally into her "butterfly" wings the past two days, and even wore them on top of her rainjacket yesterday to pick her brother up from preschool.
On the way out the door, I asked her if she was going to fly. She was hopped all over the grass waving her arms and was pretty disappointed when she did making lift off.  Usually she isn't that fond of her tutus, but who can blame her.  A fit outfit with high heals is so much more modern. She loves her high heals, all shoes not just high heals, even boy rainboots and snow boots.  But it makes me wonder....
I started reading, Cinderella Ate My Daughter by Peggy Orenstei.  I always knew that gender colors are based on society.  But how does my daughter know?  She has always been in "boy" carseats, either navy blue or black, all our strollers have been blue.  I tried to put as much purple on her as I possible could as an infant, and then when she wasn't even a year and half old, we were shopping with grammy.  Grammy and I found this darling baby blue plaid dress.  We showed it to Nan, she pushed it away, and would not allow it to enter the cart, as we continued around the rack she grabbed the pink dress.  We did not pick it up, she grabbed it.  Nan will always pick the pink shirt, after I pick up a different shirt to show her.  I know colors are based on society norms but how does she know?
Although I will admit there is plenty of gender roles in our house.  I have never made my son play with a doll and he was given plenty as a baby.  While I bought my daughter plenty of baby dolls, and other girly toys.  But she has yet to have a barbie or other type of toy, I try to buy mostly gender neutral things, and my daughter does love red sports cars, guns, blocks and motorcycles. Last year she had such affinity for motorcycles, it scared her dad.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Long Goodbye

The Long GoodbyeThe Long Goodbye by Patti Davis
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The back of the book says Biography, but I'm pretty sure its a memoir.  Not much straight fact, mostly feelings and emotions.  That is the official classification, right?!
I read this book because I thought it would be more about Alzheimer than it was. The book is about Ronald Regan's daughter coming to terms with the disease and her the relationship she made with her father. Alzheimer's runs in both my and mine husband's family so I thought this was a must read for me.  Even though I enjoyed the book be warned this book has very little to do with the degenerative disease and all about a grown woman forgiving herself for the bridges she burned with her parents. But like I said I did enjoyed it, it was quite interesting since I was a wee babe when Reagan was in office I know very little about the man, and only what my textbooks taught.  I thought Davis was very well written and conveyed her raw emotions eloquently.

View all my reviews
One step farther than Goodreads.  One thing I found very fascinating and reflexive about this book was Davis describing her parent's relationship. " marriage was not as entwined as my parents'. They relied on each other, never stopped appreciating each other; they genuinely liked being together.  A friend who is my mother's age said to me, 'I've been married twice, and I never had that kind of closeness with either husband.'
"Shakespeare wrote plays about that kind of love, poets, songwriters, novelists, have tried to describe it.  We all know about it, yet our own experiences have fallen short so many times that cynicism has taken up residence. 'It would be nice, but....' is the most common reaction. But they have it. As a child, I felt excluded by their bond; as an adult, I'm fascinated by it. But I've never stopped puzzling over it." (119-120) I thought that is what my children feel, excluded by my husband and my relationship.  I have no idea what Regans marriage was like, I'm sure some has a better marriage than me, but mine is as wonderful and fabulous as I could imagine.  I don't think about anything or anyone as much as my husband.  I dream about him almost nights, I wake up thinking about him, I miss him when he is gone.  When he is working at home, I love my children's nap time.  I love to have my children quiet (even if the oldest is silently playing video games) and go sit in where my husband is working.  He is working so I have to sit silently or read, but I just like to be with him.  He is always willing to grocery shop with me, or any other errand, he never offers to sit in the car and wait, he always comes with me.  And I want to join him on his errands just as much.  Everytime he walks out the door without me I am sad.  I adore my husband.  My children always try to squirm inbetween us, he never lets them, and I rarely do.  As a young mother I'm sure my children's well being should be my top concern but yet, whats usually on my mind first is how much I love my husband.
So as I read the multiple accounts of Davis about her parent's relationship I wondered will my children think that about me and my husband?  I eventually decided, no, I really have no idea what the details of my parents marriage is like.  But when I think about my parent's marriage I first think of getting my learning permit at 16, and my parents always riding in the backseat of the car so they could hold hands together, and putting my younger brother shotgun.  Then I remember a few years before that when a cousin asked, do your parents always kiss each other in front of you?  I was confused and taken back, of course, isn't that not normal?  The older I got the more friends I had often were taken back by my parents mutual adoration with each other, I had no idea it wasn't normal to have parents like that.  So I was never fascinated, or puzzled.  For a girl who didn't plan on getting married, I knew I would never settle for anything but the best.  I often think I feel bad for all those out there who aren't madly in love with the spouse, and feel relieved for everyone who is. Which is also the reason I have often found myself thinking, as I imagine my children's futures, I don't think single is sad, but I would feel lonely for them if they had a struggling marriage.
"But my parent's lives have always wrapped around each other with little need for anyone else. (153)"
Like I said my husband and I spend so much of our free time together we really have very few friends, because we are always so busy spending time with each other we don't have time for others.  Which is why the MBA has been so challenging for me, because I've had to learn how to get other friends and do things with others, even if I would rather be spending time with Brent.  Maybe that is why I think about him so much.  I sometimes feel bad, I'm pretty sure Brent's heart is capable of more love and respect than mine, I feel like I'm giving him the bad end of the deal.  That being said, maybe we are just different, I know when he is at work, he is at work thinking about work.  Not about me, which is fine.  Because I'm fickled because even-though I've pined over him all day, he walks in the door and I suddenly become shy.   I often wonder what the outside see when they look at Brent and I.  Do we come off as madly in love, or two people just married, PDA has never been a priority of mine.

My favorite quote from the book, which seems to be fitting for my life right now.
"We're not always meant to know why, my father used to say; we're meant to trust (193)."


Life was traditional today. It was uncanny.  So weird.  For months I knew: relax life will not continue like this forever.  At Christmas I knew I should be patient but I couldn't. I knew it was a small season, but I wouldn't believe.  Today I had a glimpse of what life might be, and as I said it was just weird.
Brent and I woke up, I said good bye to him as I got ready and he left for work.  He left the house and went to "the office" to work.  I got the kids up for school; we ate breakfast.  We left for school, the oldest dropped off, me and the little one went grocery shopping.  Eventually the end of school came, lunch came, a trip to the library, babysitting friends (actually cousins).  Then Brent returned home from the office, phone calls were made and received, dinner was made, and eaten much later than 4:45 pm.  The tabled cleared, dishes cleaned.  When I realized it was already bedtime.  I bathed my children, Brent fixed the shower head.  Prayers were said and books were read.  Could life have been so normal and average in MY household?
Life is never that normal and consistent, never that average.  Not for years, even before Brent started school he was working crazy hours, paged and random times.  While I was cleaning up the dishes, when I realized it was almost bedtime, the bizarreness of the normalcy hit me.  I mentioned it to my amazing husband and said soon life is only going to get more normal isn't it?  Once we buy a house, we'll be so normal I won't know what to do with life. He laughed at me, and slapped my bum.  (yes, we are those type of people.)
Now yes, I know my life will hardly be normal everyday, after July.  I also know I will never "arrive".  At the same time, I can't believe how normal my life is about to get. Not only that Kindergarten starts in the fall.  Its almost here, I couldn't wait in December, now I can almost see it like the mirage-y wet highway in front of you when you drive through the desert on a road trip.  I'm not quite sure if I'm ready for my car to driving so fast.  I'm often shocked how adult like my life is.  A few years ago earlier in my marriage, I found felt like I was playing pretend, someone was eventually going to come home and tell my boyfriend and me to stop kissing and go home.  But no one ever did, he wasn't my boyfriend, he is my husband, I'm not babysitting its my child.  That feeling has long past, in fact I almost forgot about it.

New Kid

I totally forgot I wanted to blog about this a month ago.  J has a new kid in his class, which I was surprised when I heard because you have to be accepted to preschool, pay monthly, and there is a cap on classrooom size.  Although I don't know if the new kid is paying. J and his friend were telling me all about this kid before he came, they were so excited.  But all they knew was he was from a country near China, (they couldn't remember the name) and is learning English.  Finally I figured more details, the little boy is from Burma, and based on some other details I'm assuming his family are refugees but that hasn't been confirmed.  J is very excited to have him in his class, but I think mostly because the first half of both of their names are spelled the same.  J has affinity for other boys who's names also start with J. My son informed me this other boy speaks Chin and English.  Which I was a little confused about wikipedia confirmed it is a dialect.  I really have no idea what the point of this blog is other than record how happy J was to get a new kid in class from a different country.  I help out occasionally in the classroom, and I was very impressed on how well the new kids could draw.
Yes, I know this is the most boring post ever, and also slightly confusing without names.
In other preschool notes, J has a best friend in class, but his best friend is a different group than him, we'll call him Ja.  I helped out one day when Ja was sick and not there.  My son made it very clearly to me when I set out the placemats for snacks (the rest of the class was at recess) that he wanted to sit by the red group, my son's group.  Which I found a little surprising since he is the only boy in his group, and normally he likes to set up placemats of an all boy snack table.  At one point it got very upset because he thought I didn't put in next to red group.  Long story, the groups got a little switched around, and his favorite red group friend who is a girl who we'll call K got switched to another group yesterday.  When he told me I could tell he was very sad.  I felt bad, but such is life. Its quite funny because he always says hi and bye to K, and she just sort of looks at him.  But in preschool defense he can't even remember the names of the other two girls.  Luckily my son knows the name of girl that took K's spot.  Unluckily they were playing in toy cars or something like that yesterday in the hallway and the girl that is new to red group bumped J and his head hit the sink.  He told me how bad it hurt.  I felt very sorry for him, his favorite group member gets bumped and he gets his head bashed.  Poor kid, I don't think preschool was too great for him yesterday, but you would have never known that today when he went in. Luckily he is friends with the girl who got switched into his group that knocked him over.