IKEA don't

So I live ten minutes away from IKEA and today was my first trip. Something inside my head was whispering for me not to go. I should've listened. I spent three hours hauling my large, pregnant behind around the show room. After that we went to pick up our purchases. I suppose the entire time we were walking around the showroom we were supposed to be taking notes about aisles and bin numbers. They had posters that told us we should be doing this. That is all well and good I say, but what about those of us who can't read? That's right. We get hosed. Anyway, after hours of more wandering we found what we were looking for only to discover it wouldn't fit in our car. I think at that point I gave up and fell asleep in the gigantic aisle while Sean lifted me onto a large cart and pushed me out to our car. I'll have to figure something else out.



I have pink eye. "But isn't that something gross that four year-olds get?", you ask. Yes, it is, and apparently me. I also have a truly attractive head cold to match it. This after a 24 hour stomach bug. All this three days after I finally conquered bronchitis and a severe sinus infection. It's sort of like the lemon juice in my eye, salt on my wound, gravel in my knees of this pregnancy. My lips are cracked because I can't breathe with my nose and my hands are cracked because I wash them every five seconds. I don't want to be responsible for "that Christmas when we all had pink eye "(as heads turn toward me).

Thankfully after seeing the doctor visibly cringe when he looked at me, I got some eye drops that seem to be working. I've been in bed all day and am feeling a little better. I can't wait to see what I wake up with tomorrow! Chicken pox? Possibly. The mumps? Even better!


What I Learned Today....

Wrapping presents with a two-year old "little helper" increases the difficulty of the task from "moderately difficult" to "outrageously absurd".

Not only that, on my list of talents gift wrapping ranks at number 999, right before drawing. I find it rather amusing that I can be so astonishingly bad at something most people find rather simple.


Merry Christmas 2007

We did it. We actually took the pictures for our Christmas cards. Okay, we did this like two weeks ago, but I've been so sick that I haven't really cared. If you are the lucky ones to be on Sean's side of the family you will be getting a Christmas card in the mail very soon. If you are on my side, I wouldn't hold my breath. Hopefully before July. I suppose I could do them now instead of blog, but this is much more fun and doesn't require untold hours of searching for addresses. Instead, I'll show you some of the highlights of the event, which always takes way too long and never really yields perfect results...

At first, I was a little crazed.
Ten minutes later, Sean was a little crazed. Really, the only time I ever see him get a crazed look is when we are taking pictures. The whole thing cracks me up. I think I've married someone sane, then click goes the camera... Unfortunately for Sean I'm pretty sure I have a crazed (or grumpy) look from sunrise to sundown.
Gracie must be doing something really cute.

Me (with aforementioned grumpy look) having a hard time understanding why I am wearing a silver scarf and funny hat when all I want to do is go back to bed.

Tip 1: if you are going to tickle torture your daughter to try and make her smile, make sure your finger is NOT showing...and warn your spouse.
We got this stunner after Sean gave us a lecture on how we needed to lean better.This is the final picture we chose for our card. Sean thought he still looked a little crazed so we photo shopped in a new head (pictured below). At first he had a double chin, but after a little clean up he looks as good as ever. I am not sure where Sean saved the photoshopped photo, but with a little imagination you can get the gist of it...Merry Christmas!



My dear friend Mary Richards and her husband J.B. are proud new parents to another baby boy, Ben Richards.

If you ask me, I think he looks like he's about to give a very important speech. Extremely presidential.

Here he is, exhausted after his speech that received a standing ovation. Those cheeks are darling. I love baby cheeks. It's perfect that babies come with built in pillows.

Mary is doing just fine. In true Mary fashion she was on the air while in labor. I find that so amusing..."back to you....ouch...". (She's a radio reporter.) She now has the desperately confusing task of trying to manage a toddler and a newborn. I plan on learning from her example.

Way to go!


Couldn't Say It Better...

I'm thinking about ordering this poster as a "you're pregnant and 12 weeks away from giving birth" gift. I can think of about a million places where it would be appropriate.
1. The front room: Why just yesterday I went into our "nice" room only to find Gracie acting coy and super cute, which means she's up to no good. I spotted her clenched fist and pried it open only to find a bottle of green food coloring.
2. The kitchen: for the times when I am trying to cook dinner, having it go terribly wrong, all while telling Gracie to stay out of the knife drawer.
3. The family room: this is where the arguments over what to watch on TV generally happen. I will interpret the "carry on" to not stop until I have won.
4. The garage: This is where I store all our cleaning products, poisons (drano), and tools. This poster will be necessary if I ever find Gracie in there unsupervised. I am sure this will happen at some point.
5. My bathroom: Let's just say that pretty soon stretch marks will be the least of my problems.
6. The kid's bathroom: Let your imagination run wild...
7. The nursery: I think over the changing table would be the best spot.
8. Gracie's room: For the time she discovers she is now big enough to crawl out of her crib.
Mmm...The posters come in four different colors. Maybe I should simply by two of each, plaster them all over my house and call it a day.


In Love...

I'm currently in love with all winter citrus fruits, from oranges, to mandarines, to clementines. I love everything about it, the sweetness, the tartness, the way my mouth puckers after eating way too much of it. I'm glad winter has its small burst of fruity deliciousness. Hopefully, this peak season of citrus will be enough to hold me over until spring strawberries, which usually bring tears to my eyes.


Good bye

I've been killed off with bronchitis and a raging sinus infection and cannot attend my cousin's funeral in Boise. I still wish I was there. The whole thing is so sad. I'm pretty sure having loving ones die unexpectedly is every one's worst nightmare.

Here are some articles I've found online, it's been pretty big news in Idaho. His obituary is listed first, followed by a news article.

Dane Richard Mortensen Dane died, in Iraq last Sunday, Nov. 25, 2007 while escorting a convoy supporting coalition efforts in the war. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Nov. 30, 2007 at the LDS Meridian North Stake Center, located at 5555 North Locust Grove Rd. in Meridian, Idaho. Dane entered this world on March 31, 1984, weighing 10 lbs 7 oz in Boise. His physical size was perhaps necessary to hold his spirit, love of life, and mischief. He attended Joplin Elementary, Eagle Middle School, and graduated from Centennial High school in 2002. Through out this time he was active in baseball, football, soccer, wrestling, and tennis. Dane loved hunting, shooting, and all outdoor activities, and people loved doing these things with Dane. Dane was a natural leader who generated enthusiasm, and fun for those involved in any activity he participated in. During middle school and high school Dane developed a deep pride of America, and a desire to serve his country in the military. His patriotism was deep, sincere, and unwavering. While a senior he joined the United States Marine Corps, going to boot camp just after high school graduation. After boot camp and training he was stationed at the Bangor Naval base near Silverdale Wash. While, there he met the love of his life, Megan St. Jean. Megan brought about a positive and profound change in Dane; he was completely happy and satisfied. They were married on Sept. 3, 2004. Subsequently, in 2005 he was sent to Iraq, where he served a combat tour. Dane was stationed in Ramadi, when it was a stronghold of insurgents and he saw combat almost daily. Dane was honorably discharged from the Marines in 2005, with the rank of corporal. Dane spoke highly of his military experience and particularly of the Marines, and the deep and steadfast friendships he had made there. Megan and Dane were blessed with a son, Kyle on March 23, 2007. Dane deeply loved both Megan and Kyle and overjoyed to have a son. At the time of his death Dane had returned to the Middle East to work for a security company. He worked in Qatar and Iraq. Dane is survived by his wonderful wife Megan, and beautiful son Kyle, His parents, Rick and Marva, brother, Erik, and sister Kimberli Stevens, a brother in law Dave Stevens, a nephew Damon Stevens and niece Meylnn Stevens, his Grandmother Evelyn Storer, and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. All will miss him, but remember him always.

Centennial High School graduate Dane Mortenson, 23, an Iraq War veteran, returned to that war-torn country as a civilian because he couldn't find a job with benefits at home, his friend and family said Tuesday.
He died in a crash while escorting a convoy in Iraq Sunday, 24 days after he started working for a British security firm.
"He had to man up," said longtime friend Adam Frickey. "His wife was pregnant, he couldn't get a job with benefits, so he did it."
It's unclear how many U.S. civilian workers are killed in Iraq. There appears to be no official record of U.S. civilian contractor deaths in the war.
In May, The New York Times reported that 917 civilian contractors had been killed in Iraq, based on interviews and information from the government.
Mortensen had planned to join the Marine Corps since his sophomore year of high school, said Frickey, who enlisted with him after they graduated from Centennial in 2002.
"We wanted to be the toughest, the best, so we joined the Marines," Frickey said. "Originally, we had planned to stay for 20 years."
The two served together in the same unit during a tour of duty in Ramadi in central Iraq.
Mortensen was honorably discharged from the Marines as a corporal in 2005.
He loved sports and the outdoors, especially hunting and shooting. He had a lot of pride in America, and "his patriotism was deep, sincere and unwavering," his family said in his obituary.
Mortensen's survivors include his wife, Megan, whom he met while stationed at Bangor Naval Base in Washington state, and his son, Kyle, who was born in March. The family is establishing a trust fund for Kyle, Rick Mortensen said. Details are pending.


In our hearts and thoughts...

Dane Mortensen, my dear cousin, died while working for a private company in Iraq. He served diligently in the U.S. Military. He leaves behind a darling eight month old son and his sweet wife. Everyone who knew Dane knows what a thoughtful young man he was and how he simply wanted to support his family.
I wish I would have had more time to get to know you better.



Scene: Dinner table, I just leaned over and kissed Gracie on her cheek.
Gracie: Smells like poop.
Me: Did you toot, sweetie?
Gracie: No
Me: Does mommy's breath stink?
Gracie (shrugs shoulders): Yeah.

To do this week:
Teach Gracie phrase "I'm overwhelmed by the amount of mints I carry around. Would you like a dozen?"


Not Really There...or Here or Anywhere...Really

Talk about an absentminded week. Starting Tuesday of last week I got a parking ticket. Sure the sign said No Parking, but come on! Anyway...

On Thursday I got a speeding ticket. I was racing to the library so I could avoid a 10 cent fee. I was clocked at going 20 over the limit. Please don't ask me where my mind was. If I had to guess it was in a flowery meadow far, far away from the road. The nice police man only wrote the ticket for six over. Bless him. I think the fact that Gracie kept yelling "Be careful, mama" from the back seat didn't hurt anything. Way to go, girl. You are never too young to start charming men that give out tickets.

This morning I started to fill my sink up with soapy water when I decided it would be the perfect time to deal with some of my tickets. Five minutes later I turned around to see my sink on the verge of overflowing.

Also this morning I enjoyed a delightful run barefoot, in my pajamas, while I chased my daughter who was also barefoot and in her pajamas. We were outside, because the mail man broke my doorbell (longer story). I was on my cell talking to a long lost friend, when I looked up to see Gracie booking it down the street. Since it was a long lost friend, I didn't want to hang up. We made it all the way to the park where I saw a billion dressed, well-groomed mothers, playing with their dressed, well groomed children. This embarrassed me enough to hang up the phone, grab Gracie and run back home.

I think it's best if I don't operate anything harder than the television. Even that is iffy.


If Only....

my hips and stomach weren't expanding at an average of an inch an hour, I would so own this dress. Find it and many other cute and modest styles at www.shabbyapple.com. Until then, I will continue to daydream about the time when I get my figure back, which will hopefully be eventually as opposed to never.



I just told Gracie not to stick pizza up her nose as a horrible scene will surely be the result, one where she'll have to go to the doctor. Her eyes lit up. She loves the doctor, because apparently that is the only place where she gets to play with new toys and get a sucker. I saw my mistake and to get her off track I started making gagging noises so she would hopefully realize that pizza up the noise is gross, and no one wants mom making nasty gagging noises, now do they?

Also, I woke up this morning to find that the best place for our cordless phone is apparently on top of the fridge. I pull a muscle every time I reach for it. Umm... I'll have to ask Sean about that one.

I was at the BYU Bookstore yesterday and decided that not only am I going to collect every good novel out there, but also all the fantastic children's book. I find them to be so inspiring. I also have fond memories of reading such books in my youth and want to give my kids the same opportunity.


More of the Good, the Bad and the Wishful

Okay, here is the deal. I am pregnant and not feeling so overwhelmed with the desire for self improvement. Yes, I've got my bad habits, but I don't currently feel bad about them. I figure the fact that I get up in the morning, make a couple of grilled cheese sandwiches, and occasionally take out the garbage more than qualifies me as a super hero. This is certain to change once I start feeling like a human and not a slug. But for now, I might consider these as more "not my best" habits.

1. TV Watching. I'm willing to bet this is a common bad habit for more people than just me. At the end of the day, I'm beat and can barely keep my head my up so I turn on my trusty DVR. What did I ever do before cable and no commercials? Oh yeah! I read novels. Who needs those!

2. Bad Hair. Don't get me wrong, I always try my best to have fantastic hair but I've fallen into this habit of not doing it that often. I simply pull it back into a ponytail. Since I am prego I try to keep the highlights to a mild roar and I'm also finding it difficult to hold the hair dryer above my head. A lot of things are working against me right now. So this habit is here to stay until I have enough energy to be horrified at myself.

3. Sugar. This one comes and goes. Now that Halloween is over, it's on its way out. Thank Goodness.

4. Poor Organization Abilities. Right now, sitting in my new pantry are plastic hand gloves right next to the cereal. I have a feeling they don't belong there, but don't care. I think an embarrassing situation is likely to occur before this changes, something along the line of a guest pouring nails into their bowl for breakfast.

5. I sometimes don't brush my teeth until noon.

6. Dead Cell Phone. My phone always dies when I'm giving directions.

7.Overprotective. I am bizarrely protective of Gracie. It will be for the best if I can break this habit before she turns five. How embarrassing to have your mom following you around school?


I knew it, I just knew it.

You Belong in Rome
You're a big city soul with a small town heartWhich is why you're attracted to the romance of RomeStrolling down picture perfect streets, cappuccino in handAnd gorgeous Italian people - could life get any better?
What'>http://www.blogthings.com/whatcitydoyoubelonginquiz/">What City Do You Belong In?

Sorry for the funny punctuation. That is how it showed up. I have no idea how to fix it.

The Good, the Bad, the Whishful Habits

My friend Alyssa did a blog where she listed her seven good habits. She plans on listing her seven bad habits, then seven habits she wished she had. I am blatantly stealing her idea. Here goes nothing. They might be a little different then they would be in my not pregnant, always sick days, but I'm going to be honest and list my current good habits, which may turn into my bad habits, once I am able to get a grip on things.

1. Snacking. Normally this would horrify me, but seeing as I can't eat real meals because of heartburn and small stomach issues, I find I am really good at this. Gracie and I snack everyday at 11 and 3. I usually try to make these healthy tasty snacks. It's become our favorite part of the day.

2. Sleeping. I know a lot of people who struggle to get the recommended 7-8 hours a night. This is so not a problem for me. Without even thinking I usually manage to pull somewhere around 8-9 hours. I think the fact that I can't really function after nine at night has something to do with it.

3. Walking. I can't remember when I haven't been in the habit of walking every day. I love it. It relaxes me and provides me with special alone time.

4. Checking the mail. What can I say? I'm good at it. I do it every day with out fail and throw away any stuff that is not important. I hate junk mail hanging around my house.

5. Paying Bills on Time. Every time a bill comes, I take it straight to the computer and enter it into our bill pay. This keeps me from wondering what bills I've have or haven't paid. Did I mention I love bill pay and have no idea how people used to function with check books and stamps. After I enter it, I throw it away or file it for record use. I think I do this because I hate junk mail or scraps of mail hanging around (see #4).

6. Cleaning House. Cleaning does the same thing for me as walking. I love it. I love the way my house smells after its been scrubbed clean. I love knowing that sticky things aren't on my floor and that people can feel free to sit wherever they want. Cleaning also helps me when I have nervous energy. Stop by my house on a tense day and you're sure to smell Pine Sol from the free way. Even though I am more apt to use those fun smelling delicious cleaning products that are a little more expensive. I justify the cost by saying that cleaning is my hobby and I should invest in it.

7. Diaper Changing. I am also really good at this. The habit started when Gracie was born and she was always getting a rash. I had to change her diaper the minute she went or she would get a rash. One thing you can almost always count on is that Gracie has a fresh diaper. I like to think she finds it refreshing.

So, those are seven of my good habits. Tomorrow I will post my bad ones then I will post my wishful habits. It's nice to see that I am at least a little bit on top of things!


Insulting Compliment

Two things really: 1) I need some dear motherly, kind advice from someone I trust, and 2) I really did receive and insulting compliment at the mall yesterday.

Here is what happened.

Scene: I am minding my own business trying to find Gracie a Christmas outfit.

Lady with child strapped to her chest (she was very nice): Hi, I'm from Mary Kay and I'm doing my portfolio and I feel so silly saying this, but I think you would make a fabulous before and after. Would you mind if I gave you a facial and a makeover and took your picture.

Me: Uh....no thanks.

Lady with child strapped to her chest: Okay, thanks anyway.

The sad thing is I thought I looked pretty good that day. Apparently, I looked like one of those girls from the teen movies that is a nerd but becomes beautiful after a gay guy does her hair. The whole thing was a really big upper. As I drove home I decided that the only person I will let ambush makeover me is Oprah, because she has celebrity stylists cut their hair and they all come out looking like super models. And they get new outfits, and they get to be on T.V. I think I might let myself go a little bit more so someone will worry and write a letter saying that I need help. I think it might be worth it.

As for the motherly advice, I just caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. Someone I know and trust needs to come and kindly tell me that it is time I start wearing maternity tops. I think if they say it with tact, a kind look in their eye, and possibly squeeze my hand, I will take the news okay.


Halloween Memories

We finally found the cord that allows us to download pictures! Here are some of our very SCARY Halloween...And of Gracie blowing out her very belated birthday cake.

The anvil that Sean made for his work. His work goes all out for Halloween. They were pirates from the Caribbean. The entire theme was Disney.Gracie was the cutest, most easily scared cheerleader you ever did see.
Here is a bad picture of Gracie with Snow White and the seven dwarfs, who were actual little people. I tell you Sean's work was out of control. Apparently the CEO hire little people every year for his costume. Last year he was Charlie from the Chocolate Factory, the little people were oompaloompas.
Sean and Gracie right before Trick or Treating.
In her excitement, Gracie suffered a lot of skinned knees, but she recovered about five seconds after each one.
Here's to next year! We'll have another little one to dress up and get hyped on sugar!



This picture has nothing to do with my topic, I just get a kick out of seeing my husband looking inspired as if he is ready to conquer the computer programming world. When he was looking for a job, we took a billion pictures of him for his online resume. This is one of them.

Back on topic. I've come to a realization. I can't always be a gigantic go-getting goal setter. Ever since I can remember I've set goals, some of them silly, some of them grand, but I've almost always accomplished them. I don't take my goal setting lightly. I really think about something, ponder it, then ponder it some more. When I finally take the plunge, I know I am serious. I didn't take running a 5K lightly. It was torture of the truest form. A little after Gracie was born I made a conscious, well thought out decision that I wanted to be a writer. Writing is something I love, it's something I want to do, something I feel driven to do. While Gracie was in her first year, and when I was relatively friend-less, I wrote my first novel. It was a delightful experience, one I thoroughly enjoyed. The entire manuscript was recently requested by a company. It's an LDS Young Adult novel. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

As painful as it is for me to admit this, my goal-setting self is having a hard time keeping up with my goal, which is essentially writing ten pages a day. Every time I go to write, I fall asleep. There you have it. Right now I have a sweet daughter that requires constant vigilance from the moment she wakes up to the moment she goes down. Sean is gone during all those hours. I have a gestating son that requires constant nourishment. For the past couple of months, I've been berating myself for not keeping my goal. I have really never done this before, but after much thought and pondering, I've decided to switch my goal. I'm going to focus on being a whiz bang mama. I can't physically keep up my writing and I'm so creatively blocked that I can't put together a decent sentence. At least I have my blogging, that I am still able to do!

I figure that soon enough Gracie will grow out her terrible two's, Jared will be four months old and taking regular naps. I will be able to get back to my ten pages everyday soon enough, until then, I am going to focus on being a mom, and enjoying the time I spend at home.

I am going to let the guilt go and just be happy.


Fantastic Halloween Read

I'm reading The Historian again, just in time for Halloween. It's a perfect vampire novel, with a villain no teenage girl would ever want to fall in love with. It's not horror spooky, but has a more subtle spook factor. Totally recommend. Find it at Amazon.com

It's A Boy!

Sean and I went to our ultrasound yesterday and discovered that Gracie will be a big sister to a little boy. We are uber excited. During the ultrasound I caught a glimpse of the baby's face and I swear I saw Sean looking right back at me. It's a good thing it's a boy. The ultrasound doctor also said she thinks they'll move my due date up because the baby is measuring big. Very exciting.

I would like to post an ultrasound photo, but that would require a scanner. A) I don't know where my scanner is and B) I wouldn't know what to do with it if I did. I'll have to have Sean work on it.

In other country news:

Last night when I got home from the grocery store I found a weird bug being eaten by an even stranger larger bug. I decided to end the whole survival of the fittest fight by stepping on them.


I actually moved a dried out contact

I've finally got the Internet and it's super fast. Super cool.

I'm too tired to really organize my thoughts but there are few thoughts floating around in my head.

1. I've lost my friends and fun favorites folder. This is very distressing. I will now have make a new one. Bummer.

2. I'm sort of moved in. Everything is still messy, but at least we can find our tooth brushes and toilet paper. I figure it's a decent start.

3. I actually packed a bottle cap.

4. I'm going to glitter some pumpkins. I do this every year. Every one just has regular old pumpkins while I have rock star pumpkins. It's the one craft I do all year.

5. Gracie got a Little Tikes car from her nanna and pompa for her birthday. She's been sitting in it for the past three hours.

6. Sometimes I feel like I've been an unwilling participant on America's Biggest Loser for the past two weeks.

7. I got cable and a DVR machine. I gluttoned out on cable for two days then lost interest.

8. Sean keeps asking me if I know where his hand mirror is so he can cut his hair. The answer was and still is no.

9. Yesterday I caught a glimpse of Sean carrying my hot pink diaper bag in church. He held like it was a moldy stinky rag, about three feet in front of him with a scrunched face. I laughed for twenty minutes.
10. My father-in-law was so exhausted from helping us move that when he was at McDonald's he ordered the "Big and N*sty" instead of the "Big and Tasty" value meal. I heard this when I was slap happy and laughed for three straight hours until two in the morning.

11. I still haven't unpacked my camera or my scale. The whole thing has been rather freeing.


So Long!

I've just found out that I will Internet-less or Internet free for the next two weeks. My dear husband, who is in charge of booking utilities, informed me that he has no idea who we are going to use for phone or Internet and that it might take awhile to get it connected. I quickly screamed, threw my hands in the air and ran to post this blog.

I will use the next two weeks to unpack, book new doctors and maybe meet my neighbors.

Thank goodness he took care of the electricity and water.

Until then, I will miss you all. I will see you in two weeks and hopefully have a bunch of pictures to post of my new family room that I painted blue. I can't decide if I like it. I now have to go to Home Depot for the five millionth time this week.


A Life Behind Bars

All right, here it is.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to be arrested for being a poor mother. Before you start protesting and saying such things like "we all make mistakes", please listen to this one.

Here's the scene: I'm in Seattle, I'm morning sick, and trying to do five million things at once.

Gracie(toddling toward me): I pooped.
Me (wrinkling my nose): Yes you did.
Gracie: Change it
Me: Okay, bring me a diaper and the changing pad.

---she actually does this now!---

I quickly change Gracie's diaper and move forward with my life, which consists of me running the diaper out to the dump. I come back to find my daughter doing weird lunges around the house. She looks up at me, her big blue eyes full of concern.

Gracie: Bum. It hurts
Me: Well, maybe stop lunging.
Gracie: Hug
Me: (I pick her up): Is that better?
Gracie (now squirming beyond reason): Bum, it hurts.

This is when I figure I should check things out. Two seconds later I discover a diaper so poorly placed that I have accidentally discovered the next big thing in torture.

Me: Honey, I'm so sorry! What have I done? Please forgive me! I would never do this to you, unless, you know, I did. I promise I didn't mean to do this. From now on I will be so careful when changing your diaper. You are the most precious thing in the world to me! I love you so much, here eat five million m&m's.
Gracie's eyes are wide open with concern. She can't remember the last time I threw a fit like this. The next thing I know she won't stop lunging and won't stop telling me her bum hurts. It's been like this all week. On the airplane "Ouch, it hurts!", at home, where Sean keeps asking me why her bum hurts, and anywhere else we happen to be.

I can picture myself next time at the grocery store. Unwittingly, a social worker will be behind me looking for chips when a weird conversation catches her ear.

Me: You've already had enough butter and chocolate for the day, so stop asking for it.
Gracie: Bum, it hurts
Me: No it doesn't. You just want more chocolate.

This conversation will continue long enough for the social worker to call the police and have me arrested. I will be sad to leave my small family and new home before ever moving into it. But I will have learned my lesson about the importance of a decent diaper change.

***On another note, it turned out, much to every one's gigantic disappointment, the my mom did have thyroid cancer. Thankfully, it had not entered her blood stream and she is currently recovering from a second surgery. After figuring out proper hormones, it looks like she should be just fine, for which I am eternally grateful.***

***On a totally random tangent, does anyone know the artist who sings the song in the new Old Navy commercial? The one about if you're cold you can have my sweater? I can't get it out of my head and want to download it. Thanks!***


Mystery Solved

I've figured it out. The reason why people can live in Seattle is because there is approximately four star bucks for every adult. It's awesome. Hence the following scene.

It's yet another stormy day, for three days Autumn and her sister have been staring at downpours and cloudy skies.

Jasmine (Sister): What do you want to do?
Autumn: I don't care, maybe we can go to Starbucks and get a carmel apple cider.
Jasmine: Okay, they are really good. Sounds good to me.
Autumn: Awesome, I love the rain, it's beautiful and soooo green.

Repeat four times.

My trip so far has been fun. Jasmine's new baby, Ryder, is absolutely gorgeous and is such a good, mellow baby I'm having a hard time believing he is real. This is where I would love to post a picture of me with Ryder, but I forgot to pack my camera. I'm honestly surprised I made it here without losing my luggage and/or my daughter let alone my camera. It's best if I don't brag about this right now as I still have to make it home.

On a much sadder and nervous note, we are eagerly awaiting some test results to see if my mom has thyroid cancer. She's already had one surgery and we are hoping and praying that is all she will need to have. Mom, our prayers are with you!

In other news: Sean closed on our house. We are officially home owners! Rock on.



Do you ever feel overwhelmed with all the responsibilities that naturally come with being a woman? How you're just expected to know things, accept things bravely, and cook? Me too.

It's been a long day. Nothing bad has happened. I'm just worried about my squirt. She's sick with a mysterious illness, she's scratched her burn so much I'm afraid it's infected, and I should have way more things packed than I actually do.

Thanks for listening dear blog readers, I'm just feeling a little worn out. But I will now bravely leave my chair to go cook some noodles. Cheer me on!


I'm back..for awhile

Hello, I'm back dear Internet friend of mine. Sean got me some sort of dial-up free trial thing. It's nice to know I have a husband that cares about my time online almost as much as he cares about his. So, I suppose I'll give an update.

1. I need new glasses almost as much as I need tums. I'm excited to get our new insurance. Hopefully, tomorrow morning I will find myself at a eye store picking out new frames.
2. Sean started his new job today. It's almost 3:00 and I still haven't heard from him. This is either really good or really bad.
3. My stomach has seemed to have shrunk. This is very startling since I am now entering the pregnancy phase of wanting to eat my house. Yesterday I dished myself up a big bowl of spaghetti and ate three bites. The whole thing was seriously depressing.

4. I am still in complete denial about my desperate need to start wearing maternity clothes. I hopefully won't continue to squish myself into my black dress so many times that my mother has to come and force me to buy new clothes. She made me do that with a pair of shoes I kept wearing. I really loved those shoes. What made the entire thing extra sad was that Sean was so happy to see me wearing another pair of shoes, I think he wrote my mom a thank-you note. I think I have a weakness for attaching myself to weird things.
5. Two weeks to go before I fly out to Seattle to visit my beautiful new-momma sister! Did I mention I am only slightly terrified to be taking a toddler on a plane, by myself?

6. Less than four weeks to go before I officially move into my new house! Every time I close my eyes I find that I am decorating it. There are some fabulous shelves in the kitchen just begging for me to get too creative and overdo it.

7. My apartment is super cluttered from all my half-effort attempts at packing.
Here are some pictures of my soon-to-be, new-to- me, house

This, as you might be able to tell is the front yard. I'm very excited for the garage. I'm not so excited about not having to scrape my windows as I am about the fact that I will be able to leave Gracie in her car seat while I bring in groceries. I currently live in a place that has no garage. I can't take a bag of groceries inside my house while Gracie is in her car seat because I am sure my car will be hijacked and then I will have to go on the news and beg the car thief to keep my car, but return my child. When I worked in the news, I always heard my director say that those parents were idiots. They weren't idiots, they were exhausted and unlucky.

Here is the kitchen where I plan to teach myself how to bake bread and make gingerbread houses. The last gingerbread house I made was eaten by mean-pants roommates. That's another post in and of itself.

Here is a shot of the living room. Unfortunately, the piano does not stay. I will have to put my unused guitar in its place. I think I'll also add Gracie's toy piano. That should really brighten the room.And hence the fully landscaped backyard with a swing set. This is what sold us. Apparently living in an apartment with a small patch of grass on a busy street makes one a little fanatical about a fully fence backyard.

So, I've got plenty on my plate for the next couple of weeks, most of which involves me taking my daughter to doctor appointments. We have her allergist appointment coming up, I'm praying she has outgrown her egg allergy.

Until I get another idea, or until my Internet trial runs out...bon voyage!


Woe is me!

I'm in the library right now. We have no Internet. Woe is me.

The difficulty in blogging this post all has very positive reasons behind it. In less than a month we are moving to Utah County. That's right. I thought I left the county behind when I graduated BYU, but I wrong. Sean scored a great job at Omniture and starts work on Friday.

We were getting free Internet from his past employer. That little perk is now gone. I suppose now would also be a great time to mention, even though everyone already knows, that we are expecting in March. I'm getting congratulations from odd men in the street. Honestly, the LDS rumor circuit is something to behold. Just because I look like I might have gained five pounds and that I am about to puke doesn't always mean a gal is pregnant... Anyway, we are really excited! We are excited about our new house, new baby and new job. We have been blessed so greatly!

Okay, Sean is outside chasing Gracie around the library. I have pictures of the house we are moving to, but they are on the other computer. I will post them as soon as I can. I might be hitting the library everyday. Honestly, I had no idea Sean and I were so attached to the World Wide Web.


I Fought the Law....

And I won!

Okay, so there are five million things going on in my life right now, and five million other things I should right about. But right now, I only have enough time and energy to tell you this. I won my battle with my health insurance.

Here's the deal. There is only one burn clinic in Utah, and they were not on our preferred care list. As a result we were charged outrageous prices for EVERYTHING. Every time I got a bill, I would just cry as our savings was flushed down the toilet. It didn't seem fair. I mean where else were we supposed to go? My mom suggested I appeal. So I called and in a very polite voice explained the situation and how we had no other choice than to be robbed blind. I was denied. I accepted that as my fate. Then I got another bill above and beyond the call of duty. Just seeing how much money we were going to have pay for something that normally should be covered infuriated me. I sat down and typed out the meanest, most polite letter you've every read. It gave me the chills to read it. I'm pretty sure I used some legal terms that people have told me to use before.

Anyway, it worked, our claim is being reprocessed for in-network fees. In a way it doesn't matter if we get very much money back at all, even though I suspect we might, I fought, I won, I feel good about standing up for my rights.


Smells like my Youth

I love this stuff so much. If I could, I would marry it and promise it all sorts of things.



Don't sign me up...

Every season I get a brochure in my mail for community education courses. I have never taken one of these classes but that doesn't stop me from flipping through the entire thing, and pretending that I'm going to sign up for a class or two...or two hundred. There are so many things I would love to learn, so many hobbies and so many languages. There really isn't a class I wouldn't like...except for a few of these gems. My imagination will not be registering for any of the following offered classes.

1. Bobbin Lace.
Umm...not high on my list of crafts. I would have to wear lace before I learned how to make it. Good class, not for me.

2. Scrapbook Cards.
I've finally admitted to myself that scrap booking, and making cards from scrapbook stuff will never be within my skills. Instead I will enjoy the beautiful cards my friends make and send them sloppy handwritten notes in return. A gal needs to do what a gal needs to do.

3. Phlebotomy Certification
It would never happen.

4. Computer Keyboarding
I've already figured this one out.

5. Writing: Obituary Workshop
I could see myself taking this class to new levels, the likes of which they've never seen. I am sure my obituary would turn out to be nothing more than a fantastical pack of lies. I would get kicked out for sure.

6. (My favorite so far) Avoid Lunacy- Drive them Sane.
This is a class for couples and singles. I say if you are in a relationship that is driving you crazy, you may want to fore go this class and head straight to the mediation department.

7. Aquatics: Early Bird Run
Swimsuit and early morning? Wouldn't happen.

8. Medieval Swordsmanship Beginning
If you're really lucky, sometimes you can catch the medieval sword fighters at Sugarhouse Park. I love to watch and wonder what their real lives are like versus their fantasy lives. Not for me, but certainly for a lot of people.

9. Dog Obedience: Beginning
My fear of dogs is growing as I get older. My heart would stop if I went to this class.

10. (This really is a class) Forkbending.
I guess I can go and learn how to bend a fork with my mind. Right after this class I will strap on my hot pink superhero costume and patrol the streets for people manipulating stop lights with their minds.

11. Paganism, Witchcraft, Wicca
Living in Sugarhouse, I see enough of this stuff all ready. No need to take a class.

12. Stamp Camp.
Clever name...please see #2

13. Making and Using Blowtubes and Darts.

So there you have it. Those are the classes that I will not be daydreaming about. In the meantime I will be daydreaming about learning 5 new languages, how to weld metal, and how to cook for a crowd.


Happy Anniversary

In some ways it's been a long three years and in others it barely feels as if a day has passed. You've accomplished a lot. I've never seen anyone work harder. You've snagged a fabu job, and have a daughter who believes the sun rises and sets because you ask it to. Happy Anniversary to the love of my life. Thank you for being everything I could have ever hoped for and more.


Something Needs to Change

I cannot sleep tonight. Every time I close my eyes, tears float to the surface. My heart begins to race as I realize that something needs to change.

Seven months ago, my Bishop's pregnant wife, Michelle, his son, Ben, and his daughter, Anna were killed by a drunk driver, just half a mile away from my house. I can vividly recall the blare of the sirens as the ambulances sped by our house as if it happened yesterday. There seemed to be a million of them. My bishop lives on my street. I drive by his house every day. I've tried to write this blog before, but I've always given up because words aren't enough to describe the deeply profound, and yes, sacred effect this tragedy has had on my life.

The first two months following the accident, his house was draped with pastel ribbons and bows, a color for each person that died. Eventually the ribbons were removed and everyone on my street and in my ward tried, and still fervently try, to act normal and that a tragedy of such magnitude couldn't possibly have occurred to a righteous man and his sons living just a half a block away. But we all know it did, and lessons have been learned.

My bishop (now former, he was released this past Sunday), immediately decided to forgive the teenage boy responsible for the accident. He says that after looking at his deceased wife, he knew she would want him to forgive, so he decided to forgive. After that decision, he heard his son Sam cry out from the back seat. I believe that decision has made it easier for him and his family. He now only has to deal with grief and pain. Anger has been left out of the equation. For the first five months, I couldn't look at him sitting up on the stand without the lyrics to a Paul Simon song floating through my head "...Losing love is like a window in your heart. Everybody sees you're blown apart. Everyone hears the wind blow...." I found it so hard, and still do, to think of anything to say. I would say hi, smile and act overly cheery, all the while resisting an overwhelming urge to sob and tell him how sorry I was.

Tonight while watching some mindless entertainment show I hear that Lindsay Lohan is only to get a day in jail and have to finish rehab for a SECOND DUI. Now, I don't know if this is what everyone gets who gets a second dui, or if she is getting special treatment. That is beside the point. The point is that now millions of people who get drunk and drive are going to hear this. What's the worst that can happen? They'll just get some community service and a day in jail, drink and drive all you want, nothing bad will happen if you get caught.

Something needs to change. Something has to change.

The laws need to be tougher. I'm a fan of if you drink and drive your license should be suspended for life. If you get caught a second time, that's ten years in prison. There can be stipulations, like get your license back after five years for good behavior or something like that. I don't think this is too extreme or too tough.

I wonder if the judge who Okayed Lindsay's plea bargain would've made the same decision if he had lived on my street and witnessed the agony that I have witnessed. If he had to watch a man struggle as he does his best to piece together a better life for him and his sons. I daresay the outcome might have been different.

I don't know where to go from here, or if I'll ever be able to help make a change. I hope so. I hope I will be able too, but as for now, something has to change.