Tuesday, September 30, 2008

'Goodbye, Mr. Bond'

Netflix rocks. I love having it delivered right to my mailbox, it's made getting the mail fun again - even if I do have to pay for it. I like saving the time and gas $ spent going to the video store (actually, that doesn't really matter to me, but I feel like I'm in a commercial when I say it). The store where I have to look at all the disgusting, sinister, creepy movie covers and tell my kids to close their eyes and then lead them around like a guide dog. I don't enjoy the video store like I used to. Sorry, tangent, not what this post is about.

'The name is Bond, James Bond.'

My husband is a fan. Ever since he was a kid he wanted to be Bond. Complete with his gadgets, guns and fast cars. The women, not so much. He could have cared less, and thankfully he's still that way. Manly has always had a 1 track mind - guns & gadgets (or is that 2 tracks? since they both start with g's, I'll say 1). When he was a kid, he was the one staying dressed up in his suit after church. His Mom, would oogle over him being so handsome and good to want to stay in his church clothes all day. The truth was, he would get home from church and switch tracks in his mind, from church boy to CIA agent, licence to kill. He was Bond for the rest of the day. If his mother only knew......she would've laughed.

Since I spent this summer watching all 6 seasons of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman (remember Sully? I know, huh.), it's been Manly's turn to pick our Netflix. I'll admit our Friday night fun nights have been pretty....well, fun. I'm not so much a Bond fan, but I love watching them with him. It cracks me up to hear him laugh at parts where no one else is laughing, and to ooh & aah over the guns, & the corny one-liners which always win over the ladies are fun for all. He becomes 12 years old again and I get a glimpse into his childhood. I wish I could have known him as a kid, from what I hear he was a character, actually many different characters. So I came up with a list of reasons why he's way better than Bond.

Ten Reasons why Manly is better than Bond:

1. He doesn't kill people. I admire that.

2. Forget exotic supermodels with fabulous accents and voluptuous figures, he's got me. What more could he want? (It always comes back to me, I know.)

3. He's not wasteful. Have you noticed how many tuxedos, dress shirts & women J.B. goes through? Between the blood, wine & lipstick, he can't keep a shirt clean. What does he do with all those clothes & women? Probably throws them away. Manly's totally not like that. He still has shirts from the late '80's, and a wife from the mid-90's. He's way frugal.

4. The only thing he likes shaken not stirred is his root beer float, and if he's feeling really crazy, he takes his root beer on the rocks.

5. The only things he hunts are deer, elk & misplaced car keys. Not crazy villains who weep blood, have metal teeth, eye patches & names like Specter.

6. His fancy car is an '02 Chevy Malibu. You can close your mouth now. Trust me, it is fancy compared to the other vehicle we have, & he doesn't wreck it every 5 minutes. I really appreciate that.

7. The biggest risk he takes is riding his bike to work, without a helmet, on a windy day.

8. He's a family man (at least he knows how many children he's fathered....... 4, just in case you weren't clear on that).

9. His coolest gadget is, & I quote, "Probably my brain.", Need I say more?

10. He's not a jet-setting, secretive CIA agent. He's home with us. Sure, the CIA wanted him - after he brushed up on his current events (seriously, that's true). HA! Fools. Their loss is my gain.

Monday, September 29, 2008

It happened

Guess what I actually got to do on Saturday? It's been a life long dream of mine, recently listed in my life list . Now, can you guess where I went & what I got to do? Let me give you a hint:

+ + +

Got it yet? Okay, try this:

+ la, la, la, la....

Did you get it? Can you see me? I'm the one in white. Oops, too vague? I'm just so excited. I'm the one standing in the middle, 7th from the left - 3rd from the top. See me now? Cute, huh?! Liar, you can't even see me. What an experience though. Best day of my life!

Since you were sitting next to me in my stake center in Idaho, you didn't fall for it, did you? But you, who weren't sitting next to me, fell for it, huh? I've always loved a good, clean blog joke (Sarah & Mary), who doesn't? Laughing is the best.
Actually, as I was watching the broadcast Sat. evening, I kept getting distracted each time the choir sang (I know, totally not like me). 1st, I thought about what it would be like to sing in a choir in the conference center, and then I started wondering, as the camera's would pan the singers, if any of them had blogs. I wondered how many bloggers there were singing tonight and if I would come across any posts on Monday about how wonderful it was to sing in that choir. So far, I've come across a husband of a singer blog, but no, 'it was so wonderful!' posts. And I'm done searching anyway because that's lame.
When you're watching conference or these broadcasts with big groups of assembled people, whom you don't know, do you ever start wondering about their personal lives? Like: Is that her natural color? I wonder if she's embarassed having the camera do such a close close up of her. I wonder what her dental issues are to cause her to get braces at this time in her life. How does the choir director have so much energy? Why is that lady smiling so big when everyone else is smiling normal? I wonder how closely I'm connected to her with the whole 6 degrees of separation thing. What white shirt would I wear? All these and more crossed my mind Saturday night at the broadcast.
I did actually listen to most of the broadcast.....(at times my mind would wander and wonder about the ladies I didn't know who were sitting by me.) It was fabulous, of course. But, this is the roller coaster ride I went on during the broadcast:
Me thinking at start of broadcast (fyi - I have a bit of a 3rd person relationship with myself in my head, but I know you do too, so I'm not wierd): 'I've already been gone over an hour, I should go home now. Why? I should clean or help get the kids ready for bed & church tomorrow. No, you don't want to do those things, you want ice cream. True, but I don't know if I can sit still for the next hour & 1/2. Do it! Okay I'll try, I'm glad I'm sitting close to the exit, just in case. Loser. Shut it. Listen to Sister Beck now.'
Listening for a few minutes:
'I am a loser. She is so good. If only I could be so charitable & righteous and worthy. I don't serve enough. I'm going to h. e. double hockey sticks. No, don't think that. You're good enough, you're smart enough, & doggone it people like you. Don't think about SNL during the broadcast. Totally inappropriate. Starting to feel a little lower, even more lower, and then something happened. As I listened a little bit longer, miraculously my spirits started to rise. Getting higher. 'Hey. I can do that. I want to do it. I want to be better. Who can I help?'
With each speaker my spirits rose a bit more and I was feeling so happy and grateful that I went and stayed (I can get ice cream after) and then it was Elder Uchtdorf's turn. 'Ha, ha! He's so funny. I totally burn the toast too. I'm definitely not as good of a cook as his wife is.' Feeling lower, a little lower and then up, up & away. He did it. Totally uplifted. How do these apostles and General Authorities have such great super powers? All of a sudden I'm the best person I know. 'I'm worth it. I can do anything I set my mind to. I am a woman, a daughter of a king. I can serve better, I can work harder. I can strengthen my home and family. I get it, it doesn't matter if I burn the food, I can sing with the choir someday.'
Totally worth going to.

Friday, September 26, 2008

2 Things


'Her hair became entangled with the toy car's wheels...'

That is an intriguing first line to a story my 10 year old daughter started writing a few days ago. Lundles, is of the creative sort. She loves to draw, craft, write and just create in general. She also definitely has the personality that goes along with those creative types, you know, moody, angry, distracted. I have no idea where she gets it from, *ahem. The problem is sometimes... okay, most of the time, the rest of the story doesn't get written. I find papers, like the one with that sentence on it, all over the floors, randomly.... constantly. I can't tell you how many stories are in my file on the computer, which she's started, but hasn't finished. Who is she? How did the car get in her hair? Who will pay for that? We'll never know because she decides that she's done with it. She's written enough to satisfy her curiosity. And if I even dare suggest she finish it because inquiring minds want to know, then I receive the smirk & it becomes a big, fat joke on me. She enjoys that.

At least she's writing right? Right now she's working on a story titled, 'Junie P. Jack'. She's the cousin to Junie B. Jones (for those of you with 2nd graders or who like really funny books, you know it). She has a baby brother too, which she calls 'stinky cheese head', because her parents had to sell her bed to buy him a crib. What is my daughter trying to say? What kind of justice is she looking for in this world? Maybe she's heard, 'life's not fair, so eat an apple', a few too many times. As long as both of her ears stay in tact then I won't worry.....too much. And, if I find out what happens with the girl, the car, J.P. Jack or stinky cheese head, I will definitely let you know. But don't hold your breath.


click on this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvc7FHqfzBY

Okay, I love my in-laws. I admire them, I look up to them, I highly esteem them (Jane Austen, anyone?). My sister in law, who's a mom and grandma is going to beauty school & she is trying to win a contest. Last night she posted a clip on YouTube and is trying to get as many hits as possible to qualify for the top 3. So please take a minute, even if you don't know me or her, to check out her clip. Next to her mom (my m.i.l.), she's the sweetest, most sincerely goodest (no, you didn't read that wrong, I really did say goodest) person I've known. Manly comes from a family of 10 children. He's on the younger end of the line, so the oldest 5 siblings all have grown children and are grandparents. Two of the older sisters are going to beauty school in Rexburg. Love that! They are so cool.

THING 3: HA! Tricked ya! You thought there were just 2. Just wanted to say, Have a great and safe weekend, unfortunately I'll be thinking about you because I'm a little o.c.d. with this blog thing right now, but I am going to try to take the weekend off. Anyway...

THING 4: HA, HA, again!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

THIS is a Good Place To Live

Life is fragile. That's all there is to it. There are simply things that happen in our lives which we have no control over & don't understand. Sometimes that's the hardest thing, about life, to accept. That's one reason why I am so grateful to have something to believe in. My beliefs have been fostered by the gospel taught in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. During the difficult times in my life this knowledge has helped me take that necessary step of acceptance and has given me hope for the future. This realization of life is also one of the reasons why I love where I live.

Most, if not all, of Eastern ID, has been touched by the sudden & tragic passing of the popular radio DJ, Wayne Richards - "the voice of SE Idaho". He died Sunday night while on vacation with his family in Hawaii. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and all who loved him. Like many of you, I never knew him personally, but I'll miss him.

I'm a radio junkie - the A.M. kind, you know, talk, politics, issues.....the fun stuff. Since I started listening to that, about 10 years ago, I gave up F.M. radio. Didn't want it, didn't need it, until a couple of years ago. I decided to have music in the mornings, while the kids and I were getting ready, with local news and updates....school closures, things we need to know before sending our youngons off in the sub-zero temperatures. The dial always seemed to land on Wayne Richards' morning show on Soft Rock Classy 97 - Wayne & Liza in the mornings. Like many of you, I listened, I laughed, I called (I tried many times to be a contestant on battle of the sexes, but could never dial fast enough). I always appreciated his kindness to the callers & fellow DJ's, his clean, & smart humor, his quick wit, and his sincerity about the good things in life.

What I have come to appreciate just as much over the past few days is the way our community has rallied together to honor this man & support his family. Where else can you live & listen to public, on-air sobbing (without the DJ getting blasted for it), and being so touched you can't bear to change the station? In radio it's considered unprofessional, it's a big taboo. His station has spent the past 3 days making and playing tributes to Wayne (for his family), telling funny stories, sharing their memories of him & inviting listeners to call and do the same. It's been wonderful to learn more about him from normal, everyday people like me. Stories about him giving up his seat in the movie theater for someone else & how he was a sincere friend to everyone as he would always take the time to talk to people along the way.
Businesses all over the area are putting up signs to honor & remember him, a shop has made thousands of free bumper stickers with one of his sayings on it, and so many are telling their stories of how he was such a positive influence in their lives. I don't think these people are doing these things because he was a local celebrity & they want to jump on the bandwagon. I think it's because he was simply a good, decent, hardworking man who loved his family & friends & they want to reach out in their own way to help his family and each other. Initially, I wondered if business would resume as usual after a day or two, and if the emotion would cease. That hasn't happened, and my love for this community has grown.

I haven't always loved it here - the cold, the snow & the 8 month winters aren't really my thing, but I have always liked it here because of the people, especially in my neighborhood. This is real America. These are real people. They are sincere, hardworking, caring, down-to-earth, humble people. My family has been rallied around & strengthened by this community several times in the past few years as we have been through many ups and downs. Where else can you live and have neighbors (visiting teachers) who'll offer to take your newborn twins during the night so you can sleep and rest a weakened heart (literally)? - Women who have to get up at 6:00 am for their jobs and whose husbands would actually get up with them to help feed those babies. Where else can you live and have neighbors who'll organize babysitting for your children & bring in meals, while you're on bed-rest for 5 weeks, and aren't even permitted to sit up? Where else can you live and let those people help your family & take your precious babies and children because you absolutely trust them? Where else can you live and know people are praying for you & crying with you when you've suddenly lost your niece or brother or mother to tragedy? They bring meals, clean the carpets, share a hug and a laugh and give their love & support in their way.
That is where I live. Sure, it's not perfect. We have our share of crime, crazies & crooks (aka - politicians), but it's the people who make or break a community. And for the most part, these are good people. This is my community. Can you see why I've come to love it so much? I am saddened by the passing of Wayne Richards & I know it'll be a long road for his family to travel. Thank goodness, this community has been as a shining city on the hill during this tragic time. It truly is a good place to live.
P.S. While we're on this subject, please take a few minutes to check out the Nie Recovery link on the side of my blog. These young parents of 4 small children were in a plane crash last month & miraculously survived. Their flight instructor didn't. The two of them are trying to recover from terrible burns covering their bodies. They need all the help - financial, spiritual and physical - that they can get. Please do what you can. Sometimes all we can do is pray & I know it helps. Like most of you, I don't know them, but my heart goes out to them. I want to do something. I have been impressed with this blogging community, which I have recently moved into. I have seen so many links to Nie and everyone wants to help. It's wonderful.....and a good place to be.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Delusions of Grandeur

Last week I was thinking about my Things To Do Before I Die list. It was on my mind because my sister had emailed pictures of her fabulous trip to Jerusalem......the one in Israel. I know, totally on my list. I'm pretty sure I know how you're feeling right now and before I go any further I would just like to say, Chill out! I know you'll feel terrible if I die tomorrow and didn't get to go to Jerusalem, but seriously, I'll be dead. So I don't think I'll even care at that point. It's just one of those lists I have for myself. You know that kind of list with all of the amazing life goals that never actually get accomplished (unless you're Bill Gates or Oprah), but just knowing you thought of them and wrote them down makes you feel really cool. The list goes on:
Learn Spanish. My family and I go to the Spanish Branch in our stake. *For those non-Mormon readers out there - we go to church with Spanish speakers. Also, I would like to say, Welcome or Bienvenidos. People of all different religions, beliefs, political views, hair lengths, colors, shapes, languages & sizes are welcome - unless your eyes are violet and then I'm totally jealous of you. Okay, you're still welcome, I just had to get that out in the open so there's no awkwardness between us. It doesn't matter what church we go to, we're all still members of this great big dysfunctional human family. I'm thinking that someday I'll post a list of common Mormon vernacular & acronyms - I use 'em all the time. Maybe I should add that to my life to-do list. Anyway.....

Manly is fluent, I'm so not. I know I should be by now (we have been going to the branch for 2 years), but have you ever tried to learn another language? That was rhetorical. I don't want to hear your success story...this is about me right now. It's really hard! People say that Spanish is one of the easiest languages to learn. I keep telling that to myself & reminding me that, 'If I can learn English (yes, it is my native tongue.....but still), which is way more difficult than Spanish, then I can learn Spanish.' But it's just not coming to me. Studying might help, but seriously, who has time for that? Yes, rhetorical again.
Invent something.

I'm still trying to think of something to invent, but when I do it'll be AMAZING! It's going to be something that will help people, & at the same time look really stylish sitting on their shelf. It can't be too expensive because everyone will want it. And if everyone wants it, it'll have to be mass-produced. Okay, then I'll have to find a really good manufacturer with state of the art production lines that have all the latest robots & equipment. I'll also need to get in touch with the best patent attorney out there who will be able to see the vision of this product and how it'll transform our world as we know it. Top notch marketing will be a must - only the best for the best....... I'm getting ahead of myself here. I would like to invent something.
Sing with the MoTab choir.
Love them! All I would need to do is be an incredible singer & sight reader/reader of music in general, live in Utah & actually be invited to participate. But have you heard them sing? They rock - not literally, they're AWESOME! I love to sing. I'm not bad, but I'm a dreadful sight reader. I'm pretty sure that most, if not all, of the MoTabians can look at a sheet of music and just start singing it without accompaniment, or a fellow singer standing next to them, who knows what they're doing, that they can copy. And I don't live in Utah, probably never will. But, If I ever get terminally ill that's what I would wish for. And don't go getting all sappy again, be happy for me that I would get to do something on my list.
Travel back in time.
Probably not going to happen, but if it does I would like to meet: Micheal Landon, to tell him he was the BEST t.v. dad ever (I pattern my parenting after Ma & Pa Ingalls) & that Little House was the best show ever made and to quit smoking (& then I'll totally be a hero for saving his life.) Benjamin Franklin, I'm a huge fan, plus I went to Franklin High School in Portland, and we were the Quakers. I've always wondered if he thought that was a dorky mascot or not. Pope Joan, to find out if she was a real person or not. My Grandma Elsie, to tell her sorry for running over her, when I was 5, with her Cadillac. I would also like to be a fly on the wall in the Salem witch trials, wouldn't want to be there because I know they would totally think I was a witch, but I could be a fly. (As long as fly swatters weren't invented yet. Okay, they were drowning people to see if they survived to prove they really were witches so they could kill them. Of course they hadn't invented fly swatters yet).
Make a million dollars. This will come with the invention.
Become a funny philanthropist. I mean come on! We all love the rich guy, or gal in my case, who gives away her money to worthy charities, but it's the funny one who gets the laughs. I'm just saying....
Travel - I started writing a long list of where I want to go, and then it wasn't funny anymore, it was just a list. So basically I want to go everywhere in the world including this beach (on this plane - cool, huh?).
I think this & the philanthropic endeavors will also come after the invention. I better get working on that.
Win a major award.

I don't even care what it is, I'm not picky. It could be anything like: the Nobel Peace Price, the Pulitzer Prize, Mother of the Year, or an Oscar, or Mrs. America, how about Best Invention of the Century, or Philanthropist of the year, the Purple Heart would be great, or some cool blogging award. Anything will do.
This is my list. I never realized how much potential I don't have and how delusional I appear in writing until I actually see it in print before me. Depressing. But at least I'm realistic. Now you can help me & yourself: leave a comment. Seriously. Then you won't feel so guilty when I die and you're thinking, 'oh, how sad she didn't even get to do any of those things on her life list and now she's dead and will never have the chance again.' Maybe I can win some kind of blogging award by getting a lot of comments. Even if I don't know you, leave a comment. You won't regret it, you see I'll come & check you out & it'll be a win-win situation.

*Haunting voice from the dead*: "leeeaavvveee a commmmennnt"

Friday, September 19, 2008

NOT worth the wait.

As I was waiting today, I started thinking about what I was waiting for & how it totally wasn't worth it. What was I waiting for? My yearly exam. The yearly exam. If you're a female, you know.

BUT WAIT! Keep reading (if you are a male, or an innocent type, or my husband, you're probably thinking - I've read enough of this trash). Don't worry, I'm not going into any detail. There will be no gore, no potty talk or any description of any kind. Just some observations.

For example, I waited 45 minutes to get into my room, while 3 other people who came in after me, went out before me. That's not cool (starting my belly-breathing). I admit, when I go to an appointment, of any kind, I quite enjoy the token 5-10 minute wait. It's my chance to peruse and read the magazines and newspapers which I'm too cheap to buy. But 45 minutes is a little much. Did I mention there were 3 other people who came in after me and were called out before me? Whatever. Since I'm a giver I decided to give them the benefit of the doubt. Maybe they were having a really busy morning. Seriously, have you noticed how many pregnant women there are out there? Anyway, my turn finally came and I thought I saw a trace of remorse on the nurse's face (or maybe it was indigestion 'cause she's prego too.) as she moved quickly around to get me into my room, take my blood pressure & give me the drill down.

Surely, they wouldn't keep me waiting any longer, especially now that I'm in the room, donning the coveted hospital gown with a thin sheet on my lap and my feet freezing to death. They should hand out footies. Actually they (my insurance company, the government & whoever else is in on this) should pay me to come to this kind of an appointment, because we all know that if you go then you don't get whatever it is they're checking for. In typical Em fashion, my too-active mind kept telling me how this was totally NOT worth the wait. And then started rhetorically asking in it's mocking tone, you're actually paying for this? Why? I hate waiting. FYI, I do have a little bit of a problem with patience when it comes to the improper use of time due to fruitless waiting. I started thinking about ways I could get some money out of this, then those thoughts wandered to shopping, and ended up waiting in line at Walmart. And my mind was on a roll for the next half hour of waiting. Yeah, I know.

Because I was in an irritated mood, I started thinking about other things that aren't worth waiting for and then on to my pet peeves. Like, it bugs me when there are 20+ (are there that many? either way, you get the point) check out lines at Walmart with only 2 or 3 open at a time. Since it is about the only place to shop in my town, that makes for long lines on certain days. Never go on a Saturday (unless it's between the hours of 6:00 - 8:00 a.m., or you're toast) that's all I'm saying. Also, it bothers me when people adopt a baby and then get divorced. There just seems to be something ironically twisted about that. I don't get it. (Remember, this is irritated Em thinking out loud - anything goes.) Then, naturally, various eating sounds started roaming through my head. Ew. Just for the record, your eating sounds don't bother me, it seems to be just my family members who make the really annoying noises. Another thing that wasn't worth the wait was, Breaking Dawn. Man, I was so disappointed with that book, especially after the last 9 months of waiting. Like a pregnancy. At least you get a baby (or 2, or 3) out of a pregnancy. That's worth the wait, this book wasn't. And then.........


She-Dr., "Hello, Em. Are you ready?" "Sure am." Really saying in my head, " No. I think I need another 2 years to WAIT. Are you kidding me? Do you have any idea how long I've been waiting? I've been ready since the 8th grade! Oh, man. What does my babysitter think of me by now?" And then that's it. It's over. Remember how I like to time everything? Yes, I did. It didn't even take 5 minutes. I waited all that time for less than 5 minutes of complete humiliation. I had my dignity stripped away in a matter of minutes, and I'm paying money for that? What-ev-er. And then of course, because I was having bad thoughts in my head, my Dr. is totally cool. She treats me like I'm her new best friend and then I'm wondering when we can do lunch. I get dressed, she promply comes back in, totally sits down and shoots the breeze with me, while wearing the cutest dress, and telling me about how............. she's pregnant. Of course.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Out of order

FYI - My latest post is the one titled, Memos. I started it a few days ago, saved it as a draft and then finished & posted it tonight. But, it's down a few posts from here - out of order. I couldn't figure out how to change the posting order or put today's date on it so that it would come up as the newest one. I'm so not computer savvy (It's really pathetic. We grew up with a computer in our home, for heaven's sake, before it was even cool to have one - way, way before the web & modern gadgets of nowadays.)

Also, let me take a moment to publicly thank my great friend H. who has so patiently been answering all of my, "How do I do this?" questions via email. H., You have been a great friend and mentor all my life, well for a few years anyways. From our time together, as adolescents, in Portland, to rooming together in college. You're awesome! Thanks for all of your help, I couldn't have done it without you. Cue - orchestra. Dab at fake tears.

Come on down & check out my latest. Oh. BTW, I'm still trying to figure out how to link to the LDS.org website. So if any of you know how to do that, feel free to offer your help. I'm happy to take it - free of charge. Thanks

*Quick update (9-19-08). Thanks to my friend Marianna, for teaching me how to use the 'post options' button at the bottom of the page. Now I can keep my posts in order. Thanks M., you're great!


To: Hoodee,
Subject: I still love you.

Remember that day you barged in my room while I was getting dressed? I had no idea you were even up yet. You pointed to my leg & asked, "Are those growing so big?" I looked down. "Not down there," you complained, indicating my calf (Dang! I was really hoping that's what you were referring to.), "that one!" pointing to my thigh. Excuse me? "No, they're getting smaller." (Oh man. I had myself convinced that going to the gym has really been paying off.) You stood there for a moment with your thumb in your mouth & your eyebrows crinkled down to your nose, & then you randomly blurted out, "You smell funny!" Rude. I did not. You weren't even standing close enough to smell me.

Well son, I forgive you. And I still love you (It's been said before,
I'm a giver.). No matter what size my legs are, I'll never get enough of your funny comments & quick observations. But maybe don't say things like that when you're 14......but keep sucking your thumb, that's cute.

To: Lundles,
Subject: You'll understand

You have to stop growing up so fast. I totally don't get how you're almost 11. You wear my same size shoe. What's that about? So just stop. Okay?

*NOTE TO SELF - invent anti-aging serum. A real one, not like the fake ones in the movies & administer it to oldest child before her next birthday. Or just find a good, ethical vampire to take care of it.

BTW, Lundles, where did you learn phrases like 'equal rights'? It doesn't apply in our home. I know it's not the 1950's as you so astutely reminded me. But, No. You do not have equal rights with your parents. Dad & I are equal, but you're 10 so you're about 1/3 of our equalness. It'll make sense when you're my age. Don't worry, I'll be sure to remind you & your 10 year old daughter of this when the time comes. It'll probably be right after I drop her off from a fun-filled day of buying her whatever she wants & doping her up on as much pop, cotton-candy & ice cream as she can handle. It'll really make sense then.

To: Epee,
Subject: Thanks

Hey bud. Thank you for all of the hugs and kisses you so freely give me. They are the best part of my day. Will I still get those when you're 17? I hope so.

To: SidySue
Subject: Your vernacular

Honey, you're 4 years old. I don't think it's appropriate for a 4 year old to say, Holy Cwap. Also, sure I laughed the first time you called me a Hideous Beast, it was totally unexpected. I mean, what mother doesn't dream of her cute, snugly, pink ballerina, sweet baby girl to stomp her foot and exclaim, "I will NOT pick up my toys, you Hideous Beast!" But now I see the error of my ways. After the 10th time, it's just getting old.

*NOTE TO SELF - Figure out which Disney movie the child is mimicking & destroy it in a fiery pit. Or just throw it away.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Best FHE Ever!

It wasn't really. I think Manly & I were the ones who really enjoyed it. We watched a movie and it is my new FAVE! It is called the Ultimate Gift. It's a great family movie with an awesome message, but it was a little over the younger ones heads. My 7 year old liked it. My 10 year old really liked. My husband & I Loved itIt's basically about what's truly important in life & what lessons we need to learn to live a worthwhile life, which includes reaching out to others. I highly recommend it. I've got the book on my to-read list now.

Cyber stalking

No, don't worry, I'm not being cyber-stalked. If only I could be so lucky. At this point in my blogging life I'm begging everyone I know to read it & leave comments - even if they think I'm a big dork. And hoping that people I don't know will stumble across it and visit for a minute then leave a charming little message. I'm trying to get discovered by the big blogging agents who are hanging out at the blogging malls waiting to discover the next big blogger. Me. Hasn't happened. Anyways.

Since I'm not a guilt trip type of person, I'm totally not going to say how I thought you were really my friends & family & if you loved me you'd do it. (Ew, I sound like the bad boyfriend. Don't ever give into him. In fact, break up with him right now & never talk to him again. You're way better than that. He doesn't deserve you. But totally do what I say.) Okay, FYI, I have a problem with tangents. I do them. A lot. So back to my point.

Today, as I've been stalki.....reading other people's blogs, whom I don't know, I've noticed that most of them have 2 things in common. They don't have many pics of their kids, if any, (definitely not the kind that are cluttering up the sides of their blogs) & they, well not many anyways, aren't using their families real names. I thought this was just because they didn't like their kids, or they weren't cute or something.

Then the light bulb in my brain turned on as I was reading through a post. This gal mentioned avoiding cyber-stalkers. Initially I didn't think much about . I mean isn't that what we all want? Someone to read our blog & be like, 'I like this blog I'm going to follow it'? But then my imagination started to take control. I started thinking about the word STALKER, & all of the unpleasant images it conjures up. Then, I started thinking about what a cyber-STALKER might try to do with our info. & pics & names of my family. It freaked me out and I was positive that my family & I were going to be next. Then I snapped out of it.

But, it left me a little freaked out & sweaty. So, I went back and changed the names of my family members - to goofy ones, but if you know us then it doesn't matter what I call them. You know who I'm talking about. And if you don't know us then you can think - 'wow they gave their kids really goofy names'. So, now I understand why some of you have gone private and why some of you call your kids #1, #2 ......you get the point. And to those of you I don't know, I'm sorry that I thought your kids probably aren't cute. I bet they're adorable, but you'll probably need to post a picture to prove it.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

He's So Lucky

I'm a dreamer. I dream, I daydream, I fantasize, I converse in my head. The wheels in my head are usually spinning out of control. Some people say it's an over-active imagination, others simply call it procrastination, & yet there are those who sum it up to adult ADD - probably. I'm the kid in the movies who sits and stares out the window dreaming about how I'm the nerdy girl & no one likes me. They all make fun of me & trip me in the halls & shove me into my locker until the cutest boy in school asks me out because he sees that spark of beauty deep down inside of me. And I tell him, 'No way!', because I've got a great personality, I totally know who I am. I'm one of those spicy, sarcastic type of girls who's great at bantering & so that makes the cute boy want me all the more & everyone else is like, 'What does he see in her?'....... And then the cranky he-teacher snaps me out of my daydream and totally embarrasses me. So then, I start daydreaming about how I'll get my revenge on him & everyone else in the class who was laughing.......

Anyways, my mind doesn't seem to slow down much when I'm unconscious either. It's very rare for me to have a dreamless night. And, about once a year or so, I'll have these blockbuster dreams that are like epoch trilogies. Sometimes, they'll go on for 2 or 3 nights in a row (not recurring, the to-be-continued kind). I'll get so wrapped up in them that I can't wait to go to sleep the next night to find out what happens next and then when I do, I'll have a completely different dream. It's like someone turned the channel. I'm sorry but, The Love Boat just won't do when you've been anticipating Lost all day. Ugh. I never find out what happens. I mean, come on! Did I ever get away from the bad vampires after I escaped their English dungeon (can you guess what I've been reading lately?) & save the little children in the daycare who were right in their path leading to me? Did I ever get to the attic in my grandma's house in Portland, the last safe place on earth for me to be, in time? Who knows, because I wake up and can't ever get my unconscious brain back to the right channel.

I also have lots, & I mean a lot (for the most part this is about the only adult interaction I get during the day) of conversations, with people, in my head. I mostly talk to Manly in my head, but sometimes if I have a conflict with someone, like a jerky painter, then I'll go over that conversation in my head before he arrives. I imagine what he'll say, then what I'll say to that, and then what he'll say back (trying to be all cool) & then I'll totally burn him with a great one-liner. Of course, when he actually does show up I don't say any of it out loud and he's the one getting in all of the punches with the rude things he says. And I just take it - whatever.

But, I can totally predict how these conversations are going to go in my head. In the past when I have tried to have these conversations with Manly.....out loud......in real life, I usually ended up getting mad because he didn't follow the script and he would start saying the wrong things. I felt like stomping my foot & yelling, 'That's not how it's supposed to go! Try again!' And maybe that happened once or twice.....I can't remember. So for the sake of the family, our marriage, his sanity and the peace in our home (ahem) I've learned to keep those kind of conversations in my head. Until now.

I recently had a very, um, descriptive talk with Manly, in my head, in which he was telling me why he's the luckiest man in the world to be married to me. Sweet, huh? So of course I'm going to share, but really there's not enough time to tell you everything he said. Honestly, I don't want to brag. Some people are really full of themselves & I'm totally not like that. So here's Manly's (the Manly that was talking in my head) top 5 reasons why he's so lucky.

1. I sacrifice. I make a lot of sacrifices for him and his children (yes, I did incubate & bear them, but I like to give him all the credit for them. I'm generous that way.). For example, making dinner for them when I could be doing something else like reading a book or watching one of my chick-flicks. Or not spending a lot of $ on home decor & shoes when there is really so much that I want. I love how in my head he gets that. He so understands how many things there are out there that I want to buy & don't & what a toll it takes on me.

2. I'm a giver. I'm constantly giving him free advice - he doesn't even have to ask for it. I give him advice on everything like how to style his hair, what clothes to wear & even how to rub my feet more effectively. There is never a shortage on the advice I give him. He can't get enough.

3. I never complain. About 6 months ago our dishwasher wasn't working. I didn't complain once when I had to ask him & his children to wash the dishes after dinner. He really appreciated that. No man wants a complaining, nagging wife. He is lucky.

4. I'm thoughtful. I'm frequently thinking of ways he can be a better husband (everyone can use some help sometimes. Well, most everyone, some of us don't need it.) & ways he can make my life easier. And, I'm always thinking up those cute little compliments he should be giving me. He loves that.

5. I'm pretty much perfect. In my head he told me how perfect I really am, but that seemed a little sacrilegious to me. I'm not that perfect - no one is - but I'm probably pretty close. He really does make a good argument for it. Like he said: I'm an excellent cook, I'm an awesome housekeeper, manager, organizer & decorator - watch out Martha, I'm on your heals. I still look good for my age - aka, hot momma. I sing, I dance, I'm way funny. Not to mention, I'm smart, witty & especially humble (the list could go on & on, but you get the point.)

Are you totally going, 'Oooooh! How sweet. She's so lucky!'? I am. I am so lucky that I'm a dreamer because that conversation, in my head, totally made my day. Does anyone ever say nice things to you in your head? Or do you have the best one-liners when no one else is listening? Let me know, I'd love to hear about your dreams & sweet escapes.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Tag, you're IT!

Okay, so yesterday I was telling my husband about how my days are going so much better since I've set the goal not to get on the computer during the daytime. They really have been better, I've been more productive, more patient with my kidlets, I have even provided dinner ev-er-y-day this week - not necessarily good ones, but something edible has been on the table.....before bedtime. (Except Sunday, which doesn't count because that's MY day of rest and so if people are bold enough to get hungry they can make it themselves - I don't care if you're 4 years old, it's time to learn some self-reliance.) He was so happy to hear my goal and I was totally pumped.

So anyways, about a 1/2 hour ago, I got off the phone with my girlfriend Becky, & I was telling her about this whole new, wonderful world of blogging and I got way nostalgic, totally missed my blog and then I wondered what was going on with each of you. So I decided that 4 days was a really good accomplishment and I'll try again next week. It's 3:00 right now and my two oldest chillens got home from school about 10 mins ago and I'm right here, right where I'm supposed to be, it feels like home - posting. (I have no idea where anyone else is, since the four of them saw me on the computer the house got eerily quiet.)

(*It's 7:00 now. I was only on for about 20 mins earlier when being the "responsible mother" got the better of me as my 2nd grader came in begging me to help him with his homework.......whatever. Some kids have no boundaries. And then I decided I probably should keep my daughter's Dr. appt. & since I was up I thought I might as well make dinner. But, I'm back)

What I'm getting at is that I was tagged, so really that makes breaking my goal the right thing to do. I've seen this happen a couple of times on a few of my friends blogs, before I ever had one, and I wondered what it was all about. I thought about what the rules of this game are: Who can you tag - anyone? What happens if you never respond to the tag, are you put on some kind of a blogging blacklist? And worse, what if you never get tagged? Are you like the kid who never gets picked for the team at recess? It really started to worry me. I wondered what I would do or say if I ever got tagged, but what would I do or say if I never got tagged? And then it happened, I was tagged last week and I'm finally responding, I believe I am still within my statute of limitations to reply.

My cute neice-in-law, tagged me about 6 quirks I have. I had to think long and hard about that one because I've never really thought of myself as a quirky person. 5 minutes later I came up with my list and then realized I had to narrow it down. Here's what I came up with:
1. Making goals that last 4 days & calling that an accomplishment.

2. I hate almost all condiments. Ketchup, mustard, mayo, salad dressing (except Italian), relish, anything along those lines - Blech! And no, it's not because I'm trying to be healthy or lose weight or anything admirable like that (I make up the calories I would have had in Symphony bars. Yeah, you know what I'm talking about). I'm just dang picky, I get it from my dad. Basically all I like, as far as that goes, is butter - not real butter, but the stuff that tastes really good - Country Crock, Salsa - yum, & Italian dressing.

3. I am terrible at recording on the camcorder. Manuel recently bought a new camera with a "special" button on it for "special" people like me who are 'recording challenged'. It's called an anti-shake button or something like that, and he "lovingly" continues to remind me to turn it on next time I record.

4. I am grossed out and weirdly drawn to freaky swarms of bugs. About this time each year we get these hornets nests on our shed and I know I should spray them as soon as I see them (I eventually get it done) because we have small children &it's not safe & blah..blah...blah...but I can't stop looking at them or taking pictures like these:
A couple of years ago we had this ginormous ant hill under our big pine trees, that I eventually had exterminated, which I'm still trying to get over, but the ants were so big and there were so many that you could hear them walking around on their hill when you were standing a couple of feet away. It was my kids science lesson all summer. Ewwww, huh?! I liked it.

5. I time everything on my stop watch. I love my watch. And I mean everything. Like, sacrament talks, testimonies, how long it takes me to write a post, how long it takes to gas up the car, exactly how long it takes me to drive from my house to my parents house in Utah, even how long it takes to go #1 on the potty. Have you ever timed that? 45 seconds really is a long time.

6. But I think my quirkiest thing is that I am obsessed with picking my husband's dry head. I am so lucky to have married a man with a super dry flaky scalp. I love it. It is my favorite pastime in the evenings after the kids are in bed. I could sit and pick his scalp all night if he would let me. This is pretty much what he thinks of it:
Okay, now I tag you: Sarah, Erin, Vanae, Mandy, Katie E., Katie U., Keri & Heather & really anyone who wants to respond to this tag because this is the all-inclusive team!

Friday, September 5, 2008

BIG Week

This week is not the BIG week, last week was BIG, this week is a normal size, but I'm writing this week about last week because I didn't write last week about how BIG it was - Capeesh?!
RIIINNGGG - Time for school.
Last Wed. was the 1st day of school. Of course we were late...why wouldn't we be? I was only up at 6:00am and the kids were all up and showered and dressed by 7:15 and we live a full 2 blocks away from the school. We did have a great breakfast though (made by me, which is why it only happens once a year), one that you have to use frying pans, spatulas & cooking spray for, and had plenty of time to spare. But I guess we were just waiting for someone to tell us it was time to go. So when I finally figured out I should be the one to say that, we headed over and wondered why none of the happy little children were frolicking on the playground. When we walked in, the halls were empty, where was everyone? They were already sitting in their seats, weird. My poor kids were stressed enough (they actually hate being late) but I still made them stand outside their doors so I could take their pics, like all of the other (punctual) moms do, 15 minutes BEFORE school starts.

Epee's - 2nd grade
Lundle's - 5th grade (fake smile - not happy about having to walk in while her teacher is in the middle of her one woman act about class rules, punctuality (oops), and the rest, & NOT EVEN happy about her mom making her pose for a pic. while she's mad & she's like way too old for this anyway!).

Fair Time.
The other thing that made last week big was the parade on Sat. The one that kicks off the Eastern Idaho State Fair. L & E both got to be in it for the CBTA (their acting class). They were way excited to be in the parade and to get to wear face paint and have colored hair, which I'm still trying to wash out! Their float was Willy Wonka and they won 1st place. (Not to take away from their teachers creativity because they did a great job on the float, but they were like the only ones who had a real float.)

Epee's Oompa Loompa pose.

Yep, you guessed it. Lundle was the Blueberry girl - Violet B....(I would spell it out if I knew how.)

It was a long, hot day but they did have a lot of fun riding & waving.

Us having fun at the parade...waiting.......& waiting.........

Okay, I had to post this pic though. This was my very favorite! The Broncodettes dressed up as........anyone get it? Yes! Napoleon Dynamite! They were doing his dance, it was the funniest thing ever!
It was a good week, but I'm glad it's over and am back to normal sized weeks - I can't take too many of those or I frazzle.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

And that?

Okay so I just got finished writing that last post about whether Scooby doo has a prophet or not, which I'm sure we could debate on for the next hour, when the same little troublemaker walked in my room and asked: "Mom, what are these for?"Oh No! Not THIS conversation again! I just got finished posting about our last cute, little, frustrating, I-don't-know-how-to-answer-this-kind-of-question ordeal (which I nearly failed). So I said, (naively hoping my answer would be sufficient & we could just put the pads away and forget about it), "Well, those are for mommies to use........not kids." Yeah, right. Like that was an acceptable answer or something. If I really thought the conversation was going to end there then it's time for me to get a reality check. When does the conversation ever end there? That would be way too easy. Of course Hoodee wasn't alone, and this time SidySue got interested in what was going on, I think the bright pink, shiny package got her attention. She asked, "Do mommies use it like this?"

"No, it's not really an eye patch. I wish it was though." She persisted, "Then what do mommies use it for?" At this point I'm smart enough not to bring up any words like blood, gross, psychotic or curse because anything that sounds gruesome or scary (which we all know it is) is really cool, and this line of questioning would never end. So with my fingers crossed behind my back I tell them, "Mommies just use them in their panties sometimes." Sidy thought about that for a minute, had to try the idea out and asked, "Oh, like this?"
"Yes! Like that because mommies like to play dress up sometimes too." To which I heard a giggle and, "silly mommy", as they both walked happily out of the room. Woo Hoo, it worked. (of course then I was immediately regretting that I didn't have the camera out to capture it, so I made them come back in to re-create the moment & share it with you.)

And to those of you who are questioning my parenting skills and thinking what a bad mom I am because I didn't take the time to explain "feminine mysteries" to them in a way they can understand, you're right - I probably am. The less they know the better. If you heard our conversation this morning about beer and alcohol, you would totally understand what I'm talking about, they are only 4 for crying out loud. They'll figure it out soon enough and then I'll be the one giggling.

How do I answer that?

*Setting the stage: Hoodee(4) sitting on my lap while watching Scooby Doo.
Hoodee: "Mom, do Shaggy and the gang have a prophet?"
Mom: Thinking, 'What a cute question, he must be a deep thinker, I never knew what a spiritual kid he is', so I reverently anwer,"No, they're just cartoons - only real people have a prophet."
Hoodee: Frustrated from apparently receiving the wrong answer, "UGH! No Mom! Do Shaggy and the gang like the Prophet?"
Mom: Not sure what to say & having 2nd thoughts about my 1st thought, "Well, they're cartoon characters and.......
Hoodee: Totally mad, near tears, "Mom! Do Shaggy and the gang like the Prophet?!
Mom: Debating whether to get mad back (there's no low I won't sink to), or just tell him what I think he wants to hear, & understanding there is nothing spiritual about this. Decision made, "Yes, Shaggy and the gang have a prophet, it's President Monson." Holding breath for response....
Hoodee: Hesitantly, "Do they like him?"
Mom: Starting to breath, "Yes, they like him and listen to him."
Hoodee: Big smile and making eye contact for the 1st time since the conversation began, "Thanks, Mom!"
I guess I chose the right answer.