Aug 22, 2008


Things I've been meaning to post:
  • Ahhh, the Olympics. For a long time I couldn't bring myself to watch any Olympic Games because I would get so depressed for everyone who didn't get a medal, but now I've found the silver lining: ridiculous commentators and reporters. Our favorite so far was a woman interviewing Ryan Lochte and asking him what is was going to take for him to beat Michael Phelps. Ummm, how about... swim faster?
  • Mia has become obsessed with REM's "Stand." It was cute for the first 10 times that we had to listen to it in a row. Now I'm begging her, "can't we just listen to 'Wee Sing' again?"
  • A few weeks ago we were sitting in church (Stake Conference), when Sam found some mints that I had bought while pregnant. On the package it says, "ENERGY" in huge letters, so you can imagine how I was feeling when I bought them. I had one, thought is was disgusting and forgot about them until Sam found it in the bottomless pit that is our diaper bag. So I gave him one. And of course Mia wanted one too. Then I started reading the label to find that they were sugar-free (lesson learned: never buy sugar-free mints or sugar-free anything again for that matter), and that they had caffeine. WHO PUTS CAFFEINE IN BREATH MINTS?! Basically, we had just given our small children the equivalent of half a cup of coffee in the middle of a meeting where they were supposed to be quiet and calm. I might has well have given them Red Bull. So, I did what any other ghetto mom would do-- gave one to the baby too. Just kidding. No, I doped up myself. I mean, if they had half a cup of coffee, I might as well have 3 to keep up with them right?
  • While we're talking about questionable parenting, I was with the kids at a McDonald's Playland last week and found myself telling them something along the lines of, "If you don't eat, you can't play." It suddenly occurred to me that I was basically telling my children, "eating this trans-fat-full, cholesterol-laden, pathetic-excuse- for-food is way more important than exercising." What the? I feel the same weirdness at Costco when I tell them they have to eat their hot dogs before they can have their churros. I mean really, is the hot dog that much better nutritionally than a churro? Who am I kidding?
  • Mia is learning how to ride a bike without training wheels, so I've been spending a lot of time running behind her while holding on to her bike seat on the sidewalk in front of our house. The whole time I'm singing the song from the old Mormon commercial, you know the one. Sing with me now, "You know you never played ball very well/but mother you never failed me/You gave me the best you had/and if you feel bad/missing your masters degree/well I hope you know at least/that I'm your masterpiece/mother you never failed me!" Classic.
  • I went to a baby shower for a friend recently and one of the other guests happened to be one of the nurses assigned to me after I had Nate. In fact, she was the one on duty when I passed out in the bathroom and everyone thought I was bleeding to death. We laughed about it, chatted for a while, and then it was a little weird when I realized, "man, this lady took my catheter out." Awkward.
  • Last week when I was putting the kids to bed one night, it got a little...tense. I heard Mia yell out, "Sam, we have a mean mom, huh?" No, you have a mother who needs a vacation. And speaking of...
  • It was one year ago that we took our vacation to Hawaii without our kids. I feel a little cheated that since I hadn't started this blog yet, I didn't get to post about how super AWESOME it was. And seriously, it was. I didn't even know the meaning of the word "incredible" until I ate at Mama's Fish House on Maui. In memory:

Nate is 12 weeks!

When it comes to Nate, we're half seasoned parents (note: that doesn't mean good parents, it means much of the time we forget where he is, he hardly gets bathed, and the binky doesn't get cleaned when it drops on the floor), and half blubbering, goo-goo eyed, "isn't this the cutest baby you've ever seen?" variety of parents. The kid is 12 weeks old today, which means he is more baby and less newborn now. It means he is sleeping 10+ hours at night, but still needs a little help with the binky and swaddling, and he smiles and coos at us, but also demands a little more attention and cuddling too. It also means he's entered the blow-out stage where, rather than multiple episodes of minor seismic activity throughout the day, he experiences major Mt. St. Helens size eruptions every 1-2 days that leave him literally covered head to toe in poop. (My apologies to John Young for such graphic descriptions of #2, and my apologies to Nate for putting such personal details on our public blog-- when you're a parent you can do the same buddy). And finally, it's been enough time since his birth that the complex process of insurance claims and medical billing in our behalf has come to an end, and the result? Over $2000 out-of-pocket. Ouch. I figure, with Mia we paid about $300 total, and Sam was a freebie from the state of Washington, so the average is about $800 per kid. I doubt we'll ever spend that much on any of their birthdays again. Too bad for them. And since we no longer have enough money to plan our master bath remodel, I guess I have some time now to post some recent pictures of him. So here you go: 12 week old Nate.

Aug 20, 2008

Costco: the game!

Are you ready to play?

We start off with "Spot the Mormons." It's easy during the summer. Just look for knee length shorts and cap sleeve shirts, a minimum of 3 kids hanging off the cart, and a cart full of diet coke. It's fun and wholesome!

Next we move on to "Shopping Cart Traffic Jam", thanks to Elderly Couple Stopped in the Middle of the Aisle, and Bottleneck at the Free Samples.

Speaking of the samples, it's time for "Demo Derby": how many times can you hit each one without getting caught? Careful, those old ladies can be feisty!

Oh no! It's the dreaded "Toddler Tantrum/5 Year Old has to go Potty Right Now!" obstacle. Remember to smile, you're on camera.

You made it to the check-out line! Let's play "Pimp my Total!" Will it be $135? $189? No, it's $270, and half of that is for diapers. Hurray for almost 3 year-olds who aren't potty trained!

Make sure to treat yourself to a Costco Dog on your way out: 5000 calories in 10 bites-- you deserve it!

But wait, the fun doesn't end there! When you get home you get to play "Where am I going to put all this crap?" (also known as "Time to Buy a Deep Freezer").

Thanks for playing-- Hope you won!

Aug 13, 2008

For all you English majors out there

I recently read a book that quite honestly has me afraid to ever talk or write anything again. It's called Literally, the Best Language Book Ever: Annoying Words and Abused Phrases You Should Never Use Again, by Paul Yeager. Three words: fanatical language purist. I don't think this author thinks that language should change or evolve, let alone be fun or amusing. However, amidst the mildly annoying ranting, he did have some valid and thought provoking points about language and communication, and embarrassingly it was a little educational. His main point is that we tend to use trite or trendy phrases and words without thinking about what we really want to say, and the result is ineffective communication. (I just had to look up "ineffective" in his book to make sure it wasn't on the blacklist-- it's a pretty long list, almost 200 pages. Like I said, kind of makes you afraid to talk.) Yeager's laundry list of offenses include grammatical errors, redundancy and repetition (long litany), illogical phrases (that's nothing to sneeze at), trendy expressions (don't go there, wow factor), nouns used as verbs (google it, text me), cliches (Rome wasn't built in a day), inarticulate language , incorrectly used words (empower, literally), overused words and phrases, and non words (irregardless). My biggest language crime: hyperboles. Big time. I also said "supposively" for years (that's not in the book, but I just feel the need to confess it). Here are some more examples of things that, according to Yeager, should be banned from our language:
I could care less
it's all good
my bad
whatever floats your boat
bang for your buck
bring it on
what's up
I gave 110%
chill out
back in the day
war on terror
think outside the box

Some of those things I just don't know if I can give up. But one thing I absolutely can agree with is ginormous. Yes, we get it-- gigantic and enormous, but unless you want to sound like you never passed the 2nd grade, please do not ever use this word. Ever.

So, what's your language pet peeve?

Aug 12, 2008

Made it through the day

So I am resisting the urge to apologize for that last post (you know the perfunctory "sorry for being so negative" rider following a downer of a post). Thanks to everyone for the sympathetic comments. I had a bad night, and they happen to me more often than I would like. There are worse things than not being able to shut your brain off at 1, 2 or 3 am, but when you're in the middle of it, oh, it's beyond frustrating and it's hard not to throw yourself a big pathetic pity party. So I captured the moment and sent it out into cyberspace. And then woke up the next morning (eventually), and muddled my way through the day like I always do. All in all we survived the day fairly well. It's a good thing we're still in the middle of life with an infant and my kids have learned not to expect much from me, so they weren't too disappointed. But here's a moment that needs to be recorded:
Note: for security purposes I have decided that from here on out my kids will be referred to as Abcde, (pronounced Absidee), LeVoyd, and Miracle's Precious Gift, (or MPG for short).

Last Friday I woke up completely motivated to potty train LeVoyd (we were out of diapers). After about 4 hours I was pretty much out of momentum, and had eaten most of his potty treats anyway, so I gave up. Abcde however, still had the drive and tried to pick up the pieces of my ridiculous attempt. Over the course of the weekend, the 2 of them would have potty parties and I would overhear snippets of the most hilarious things, such as Abcde saying, "and then you'll have to earn some money and get a job OK?" Not much progress was made despite the valiant effort, but luckily no accidents either. That's why today when it was quiet time and LeVoyd wanted to have some potty time, I (in my sleep deprived state) just brought his potty into his room and let him have at it. I'm pretty sure I meant to check on him a few minutes later but I got caught up reading some really important blogs and then took a shower and did some other stuff. Eventually I went in his room and found this

and more specifically this

Don't look too closely, but there is a suspiciously yellow liquid in the bottom of that potty. I'm not sure when the cars ended up taking a dip, but there they were. So of course we celebrated, and promptly cleaned all the cars. I'm hoping his big sister will have him potty trained by the end of the week.

Aug 11, 2008

3 AM Wish List: a walk on the dark side

It's almost 3 AM.

I wish I was asleep. I've been sitting here thinking of everything I wish for right now, and just a warning-- it's not world peace, or an end to poverty, or anything remotely noble. Occasionally during my insomnia bouts I wax philosophical and altruistically solve the world's problems, but tonight I'm feeling very self-centered, and also very unfunny (warning #2).

I wish I wasn't an insomniac. It really sucks.
I wish I was still cool. Not in a pop culture, hip music and high fashion kind of way (seriously, once skinny pants came back, I knew I was out of the fashion loop for sure). but in a self-assured, true to my inner self, powered by ideals, unconcerned about what anyone else thinks kind of cool. I think I used to be like that.
I wish I knew exactly how to handle my kids all the time. I wish I could accept that I don't.
I wish I lived closer to my family.
It would be nice to wake up tomorrow to a clean house. But I wish I didn't care so much about stupid things that don't matter.
I wish I could read non-fiction and not have it put me to sleep. I wish it would work right now.
I wish I had a little more faith. I'll leave it at that.
I hope all my friends and family know how much I care about them. I should tell them (you) more often.
I wish I could just write everything I really felt right now without worrying about depressing the pants off of everyone who might read it.
I wish I had auditioned for the St. Mary's Nightingales (singing group) during my last year of college.
I wish I still believed that people are basically good at heart. But more so, even though I say that everyone is worthwhile and valuable, I wish that I actually treated everyone like I believe it.
I wish I never had to shave my legs again.
And yes, I wish I had a million dollars.

Good night everybody.

Aug 6, 2008

Nate: our almost kid

Almost 10 weeks; almost 12 lbs; almost 23"
But pretty much the most perfect baby ever.

Aug 4, 2008

The best years of our life, right?

That's what I was telling myself last night around 4:30 in the morning when every person in our family was wide awake, and it seemed had been for hours, and with no end in sight. And of course, there is no explanation, as is usually the case with these things. All you know is child A wakes up child B, who wakes up child C, who reawakens child A, and the cycle continues until you find yourself slipping into a dark place, fantasizing about sound-proof, padded rooms that lock on the outside. And the hours go by and still no one is sleeping, and by then you are certifiably insane. It's the kind of night that you just have to document, because no matter how much you swear you will never forget it, you will, in fact, forget it. Just like how I'm so tired right now, I can't remember much of anything that happened this week, except one thing: for some reason the one thing I remember from this week is that we ate cooked spaghetti noodles with no sauce for breakfast one morning because we had absolutely no other food in the house. That's a moment worth documenting. The best years of our life, right? Plain noodles for breakfast and family bonding at 4 AM.