Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Today is New Year's Eve, and it would be very convenient if we ended up having the baby tonight, but chaSo there are nces don't seem great. See, if we have the baby tonight, we don't have to pay our deductible for our insurance. Since we have private insurance, we pay $3500 before the insurance foots a penny, but then, at least, it does cover pretty much everything else. So if we do end up having the baby at the first of the year, we won't have to worry about any other medical emergencies. But the thing is that we probably won't spend $3500 before we end up going to school, where they should have some sort of group insurance. GROUP INSURANCE! YAY!! So, anyway, we went for a walk last night to see if we could encourage the baby to come, and he didn't seem to want to come last night. I even ran about 100 yards. I am 37 weeks today, so it would really be just fine if the baby comes today. The baby will be healthy. At my 31 week ultrasound, the baby was 4 1/2 pounds already, so with six more weeks of growing, he should really be fine. :) Anyway, we will do a post when he comes. Until then, we're planning on having a New Years Eve party with scones today. :) My cousin Kim said that it used to be a tradition at my Grandma Skouson's house to have scones on New Year's Eve, so I wanted to be a part of that this week. We're excited! Happy New Year to everyone!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Eve

I have several posts from the Christmas season that I want to write, and I thought about writing them backwards, but to try to keep this blog as sort of a journal, too, I decided that for my own sake, I'm going to write the posts in the time order that they happened. However, some of the things won't be happy and might be a bit grotesque thanks to our furry roommates, so please, if the killing of innocent animals bugs you, please don't read these posts.

So, our friend Melissa over at http://takingwhatisleft.blogspot.com commented that if the mice were going to live there, at least they could help me clean up like the ones in Cinderella do. Apparently, on Christmas Eve, one decided to try to help. He wanted to help wash the crockpot bowl that was soaking overnight in my sink because of stuck on food that we couldn't get off. We didn't know it though, so I started to dump out the soapy water, so I could wash the bowl, and there I found it, a mouse had drowned in my crockpot. . . I must have jumped at least 6 inches, and Rob said that he wishes he had a picture of the face I made. I was totally grossed out, and I thought about chucking the crock pot and going to target and getting a new one where they are on sale for $15. I came to my senses however, and I kindly let Rob have the honors of going to dump the mouse into the outside trash can. It was a tramatic experience. However, Christmas Eve did get much better from there.

We cleaned up the kitchen and the house a lot, and then we went into the room with our lovely $20 Christmas tree and read the story of Christ's birth directly from Luke. The kids were pretty enthralled with it actually. They got to open their Christmas Even pajamas, and then we all piled in the car to go to Thomasville.

In Thomasville, we ate at Applebee's, and the kids enjoyed that. Then, we got in the car to look at Christmas lights. Thomasville has a beautiful public house that is decorated to the nines and they have a Christmas display set up specifically for cars to just drive around the old plantation and look at Christmas lights. I got a few decent pictures of this one, so I hope to put up that post later. ONce we got home, Jackie went to bed right away, but Ben wasn't so sure he wanted Santa to come. He wanted Christmas to come, but he wasn't overly fond of Santa, so when we told the kids to go to bed because Santa can't come when kids are awake, Jackie went right to sleep. Ben, however, tried to stay up, so Santa wouldn't come. At 12:30 am, we finally got him to sleep, filled up the stockings and went to bed. I hope to get the pictures from my camera downloaded, so you'll see some of the pictures of the lights. That will have to come later though.

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas (or whatever you celebrate, but this is my blog, so I wish a Merry Christmas) and I hope people go on to have a wonderfully happy New Year.

Monday, December 22, 2008

If you like Scrapbooking

Life as Lou is an awesome scrapbooking blog. She is a designer for Cosmo Cricket and Quickutz, and she also teaches scrapbooking classes at a local (to her) and internet store called The Scrapbook Nook. She is amazing at what she does. She's also a first class mom. If you get a chance, hop over to her. The link I left is for a drawing for $150 in scrapbook supplies. If you're interested in this awesome blog, head on over and check out her blog. Also, she has a Christmas album class up on her blog that looks like tons of fun. If I were any good at scrapping, I might try this. If you're interested in the rest of her blog, just click the Home link at the top, and you can have hours of interesting reading. Good luck to all scrappers out there.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Unexpected

Haave you ever had a day where everything that happens is either unexpected, or nothing you expected to do works out?

It sort of started out the night before when Jackie just absolutely refused at all costs to go to bed. I finally gave up trying to work on it at 11:30. She fell asleep at 2. We told her at 11:30 that she could stay up and not go to school. She threw a fit about wanting to go to school, and we told her that if she wanted to go to school the next day, that was fine, but she had to go to sleep. If she didn't go to sleep in the next 10 minutes, there would be no school, and Daddy and Mommy weren't going to bug her about it. She could choose. She chose.

I have never had a day like that so much as yesterday. It started out that while I was getting ready to teach seminary, I got a call from the mother of one of my students that the girl had an emergency. I needed to go be with the mom through this emergency, so I cancelled seminary. (This was a big emergency.) Then, I called Rob and the Branch President to come give the girl a blesssing, and Rob also ended up asking the Branch President's wife to come get the kids, so I wouldn't have to leave the mom.

When I was on my way to go pick up my kiddos, I got a call from my friend who was planning on helping me unpack some more. She was at my house, and I wasn't there. I stopped by on my way to pick up the kids and gave her the keys to my house, and then I went to get the kids. Once I got home, my friend and I decided not to really unpack but just to let the kids hang out. that was good, but Jackie was sort of a pill (I know, shocker; she got all of 5 hours of sleep the night before!) and I was absolutely exhausted. We let the kids play until lunch time, and then I put BOTH of the kids down for naps. I was adamant that Jackie had to actually go to sleep. By 3 they were asleep, which was unexpected. My friend was supposed to come back, but while she was running errands, her son had an accident and ended up having to go to the ER to get his nose X-rayed. While they were there, the poor little guy had another type of accident and didn't have any dry pants. So, I stayed home and got a little bit done, but also, Rob got off work unexpectedly early, and we left for Tallahassee early. We had to take a computer down there. Also while we were there, I thought that there would be a great sale at Kohl's on a KitchenAid mixer. The sale wasn't nearly as good as I thought, so I didn't get one. Everything just seemed to be different from what I planned yesterday, and even though I'm almost through another entire day, I'm still not sure I'm recovered.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Still not unpacked

I can't seem to get the motivation today to keep unpacking and doing laundry and the other million things I have to do (like wrap Christmas presents, so I can get them in the mail and get them to family in time for Christmas). So, I'm thinking that I'll just blog instead. I have lots of fun things to blog about. Particularly a really awesome story time they did at the library a couple weeks ago, but I just can't get up the energy right now to do that either. Instead, i'm sitting on my bed, while my children watch Clifford on the TV in my room and I just sit here blogging and looking on the internet. At least last night, Rob and the kids got a ton unpacked out of my living room, and I can use it. So I'm resting a bit.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

New Roommates

We have some roommates in our house that we didn't realize we had until we had moved all of our stuff in.

On Tuesday, we moved in, and our house, especially the kitchen had a horrible smell. We thought it would get better when we started wiping out cupboards, and it did for a bit, but we found mouse poop there. YUCKY! We thought, maybe it's just old, so we wiped down each cupboard before we loaded them full of stuff like dishes, paper towels, paper dishes, and snacks foods. . . .

Two rolls of paper towels have mouse poop on them today, so they're fresh. The Orkin man just came yesterday and said that these mice are a huge problem. We need to get treated for them right now. Rob and I talked about it, and we are going to rent mouse poison boxes for the back yard to catch the mice and kill them before they even come in. However, I have looked up some articles, and it is dangerous for me to breathe around the mouse poop let alone clean it up. I'm hoping that Orkin can get rid of our neighbors, so we can have a mouse free home very quickly. Mice DO NOT make good roommates.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

In, out and In Between

My friend who just moved out of this house called Monday night and offered to come help me pack and move in on Tuesday. That is an offer that I can't turn down! There is still stuff at Mom Robinson's house, but not much, and we got all the big stuff Tuesday thanks to Danielle and her husband. We took turns watching kids and packing, and I didn't have to do any heavy lifting. So, we got to sleep here last night for the first time, and it feels good. I haven't done much unpacking today because I ended up needing to go to Thomasville, but I did get a huge tub full of cleaning supplies almost cleaned out plus a bunch of clothes put where they should be. With all of that complete, I am starting to feel like this may be home.

So, the reason that I was in Thomasville instead of being at home where I really NEEDED to be was because of my wireless air card. We have not had service with the air card for over two months, and regardless of hours spent on the phone with tech support, hours spent in the store, and hours spent on the phone with Windows, all was to no avail. So today, I went over to the cell phone store determined to have it out with them. I was planning to say, "I don't care what you say about me having to pay you for your termination fee, I haven't had service for the last two months, and you can't hold me to a contract that you're not keeping your end of the deal with. I'm not leaving this store until, 1) My service works on a consistent basis, and you can make it happen, or 2) You cut me off as of the last time I was in here with no penalty." Well, I didn't have to. The girl got right to work trying to get the card to work, and after SHE spent more than an hour and a half with tech support and couldn't get it to work, she thought, maybe you just need a different type of air card. WOO HOO!!!! She plugged in one that was already programmed that another store agent used and my computer helped it hook right up. Then, she put in the disk for this one, plugged it in, programmed it, and all of a sudden, it worked too. It seemed almost like a miracle.

However, the biggest miracle of all of this is that I took both of the kids with me, and they were both good the ENTIRE two and a half hours that I was in the store. (Every bit of this time was spent with the agent.) Jackie was asleep when she got there, and she stayed asleep the entire visit. She has had a hard time going to bed at night for awhile, and she needed the nap. Ben was asleep when we got there, too, but it was a new place for him, so he stayed awake. However, he sat in the chair and drew and looked at the different name cards they had available, and some of the time, he just sat in my lap and cuddled. I had said a prayer before I went in, and I think that Heavenly Father answered my prayer. There is no point in paying a monthly fee for a service that I wasn't receiving, and I asked Heavenly Father to help me be assertive without getting angry if it came to that. As it turns out, I got the absolute best agent ever, and she got things fixed for me with no problems. THANK YOU Miss Marchelle! Anyway, so I now have the internet, and it works, but we don't have a three prong outlet in either our living room or our bedroom here, so I am not sure how to hook up our electronics. . . Also, I have to go leave my laptop in the kitchen and let it charge and then sit somewhere comfortable to use it where I want to while it is not plugged in. Things are definately looking up here.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Movin' Out. . . Again

Anthony works in a grocery store, saving his pennies for Sunday. . . Mama if that's movin' up then I'm moving out. Again, I'm a huge Billy Joel fan, and again, we're moving out.

Several things have happened all at once, and Rob and I feel like it's time for us to move out. We signed the lease today on a house in town. I'm very glad about this!!! It will be nice to get my own space. :) I don't want to share details on the blog for two reasons. First, it isn't nice to gossip and second I don't know what lurkers I have. But the long and short of it is that I am about to have my own kitchen again. Yes, I am SO looking forward to that.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pictures from Thanksgiving

We tried to take some family pictures so that my MIL could have some for her Christmas cards, but things just never seemed to work out. Here are some of our better attempts.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Last Day of NaBloPoMo

Today is the last day, and I did pretty well. I didn't get them all, but I certainly did better than I expected to do. I didn't get yesterday, and I have no reason. I guess I just forgot to post what I was thinking about. I did make it to my laptop yesterday and everything. I had a whole post typed out in my head today when I sat down to my computer, but for some reason, I can't even remember what it was supposed to be about let alone the entire post, so you're just getting an update on our day. Our day went OK, but we are down to one car, so we're planning on trying to figure out our schedule with only one car. We need to figure out how to get me to seminary in the morning and still get Jackie to school in the morning and get Rob to work. We loaned our van to some of our friends whose truck broke down. They were planning on moving to Mississippi, so we knew our van would make it. I called them today to see how the drive went, and they said that they decided not to go. They will still have our van until they get a chance to get their engine replaced in their truck. Things will be interesting for awhile.

Well good luck to all of you, and I hope you have a great time as we enter the Christmas season. Although this is politically incorrect, Merry Christmas, and I hope to say that a few more times until we get to that point. I can't wait for Christmas to come.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A New Toilet Seat

Have you ever sat on a toilet seat with a crack in it? It's not the sitting that hurts. It's the standing up. Whenever I sat on it, somehow, it would make the crack open up, and then as I stood up, I got a grand pinch. Now people, I'm tolerant of stuff, but I can only take a pinched bum so many times. Three days was enough. Remember, I am seven months pregnant, and I have to pee in proportion to that. After three days, I finally bit the bullet today and drove to Tallahassee AGAIN, so we could get a new toilet seat. We did it. We got a new toilet seat and we are very pleased with it. As soon as we got home, I uninstalled the old one and put the new one on. OH the bliss! I went, and then I stood up, and wonder of wonders, no pinch! What a lovely $25. . . Some of the best $25 I have spent in awhile. . .

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

A very Happy Thanksgiving to all. For those of you reading on a different day than today, (more power to you, please spend it with your family) then I hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving.

Our Thanksgiving started out really well. We all dressed up in nice clothes and went to Cracker Barrel in Tallahassee for Thanksgiving dinner. I highly suggest it. The food was wonderful, the 35 minute wait for a table wasn't horrible, and we didn't have to do any cooking or cleaning up. They had turkey, ham, dressing, and a whole bunch of things to go with it for 8.95 and that included a drink and pumpin pie. However, since I'm not that fond of turkey, pumpkin pie, cranberries, or several other menu items, I ordered a steak for 9.99. I loved it, and I'm feeling a lot better now that I have a little bit of iron in my system. So, for anyone who doesn't want to cook next year, leave early, and go to Cracker Barrel for Thanksgiving lunch.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Twilight Series

I have heard people rant and rave about Twilight by Stephanie Meyers. I'm not sure what to think. I have not read the books nor seen the movies, but after so much hubbub about them, I'm thinking that I may need to read the books. So, if anyone has any good or bad things to say about these books, I'm open to them. I am automatically leery of any book that has anything to do with a vampire, but people have said that the book is more about forbidden love. I just think that I'm not sure about them, but so many people have talked about them that I think I may have to try to read one. . . So I'm open for comments.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Primary Program

Sunday was the primary program, and although Jackie has had a little verse or something to say before, this was the first time she's actually given a real talk in church. I did help her, but she did a great job. She told the story of Jesus being baptised in the River Jordan by John the Baptist. I helped remind her a little bit, but she looked at the pictures we drew and was able to do it mostly by herself with just a little bit of reminding from me. Three cheers for Jackie. I'm so proud of her.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Pictures

Here are the pictures from my cell phone from the Glenn Beck book signing.





I did get one picture of Glenn Beck, but I can't see him very well, and the other pictures are cooler anyway. :) Ben and Jackie really did do well, and if he'd gotten there on time, Ben would have made it through the whole thing happy. As it was, we did pretty well, and we're glad we went.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

What a good husband

My Rob is a wonderful husband. I went to my friends' new house today to return her crock pot. She had brought some chili over, and we all ate it together right before she moved. I forgot to take it over when I was helping her pack, so I had to drive 30 miles to return it. That was OK because I just couldn't stay home today.

I was so tired when I got back, so Rob cooked our frozen pizza and then he also put the kids to bed. What a great husband! Thanks Rob. Now, it's 11:30, and he wanted to make sure I got my post in for the day, so even though I've already been to bed for two-three hours, he helped me do my post. I wasn't going to post on this but considering that I'm tired, and it is 11:30, this is a great post, and I do love Rob! :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Book Signing

Glenn Beck wrote a book called The Christmas Sweater. It is not politically based at all, neither is it extremely well written. However, I do recommend that people read it. This book is worth one good read, and the last 20 pages or so could be read over and over again.

Since he was planning on being in Tallahassee today at 5:30, Rob and I decided that we would try to go get our copy signed. We had talked to the hosting book store ahead of time and found out that they were giving out tickets in advance, starting at 9:00 am this morning. We weren't crazy enough to want to stand in line for the first tickets this morning, but we did manage to get to Tallahassee by 11, so we could get our tickets to get in. We were in the 251-300 range, and we felt pretty good about that. They were taking people into the line in 50s, so we got in line just behind the 200-250 range. It worked out alright except that he was extremely late.

After a glorious day of shopping in Tallahassee, (It was also Friends and Family week at Kohl's, and thanks to my awesome brother-in-law working at Kohl's corporate, we had a coupon for 15% off of the entire ticket at the end. Also, Kohl's was having a fabulous sale, so we bought all of our clothes at great prices to begin with. We got three outfit packages for our new little guy (maybe Daniel?) for $9.99 a piece, that type of thing.) we arrived at the book store right at 5:30. We only had to wait around for 10 minutes or so until our number was called to get in line, and at that point, we were feeling pretty good about things. While waiting in line, we heard that Glenn Beck was going to be late. He was scheduled to be there from 5:30-6:30, but he didn't even arrive until ten to seven. Luckily, we were stuck right next to the entire table of children's Christmas books, and underneath it, they had these cool sleeping bags that look like animals. In their packages, they made great pillows for my kids to sit against while they turned the pages of book after book on the table looking at the pictures. Ben made it for almost a half hour doing that, and Jackie made it for almost 45 minutes. I'm glad we got stuck there instead of the political section or something. Ben got tired toward the end, and he just wanted to "go home and get my milk. Go get my milk at home." Rob had a hard time struggling with him for a few minutes, and I really had to pee, so I had to brave going toward the totally packed front, right by the door that Mr. Beck was supposed to come through to go to the bathroom. Apparently, they were only letting one person at a time go to the bathroom, but when they saw me, they let me right in. I guess they understand that pregnant people just can't always wait. . .

About two-three minutes after I got back from the bathroom, he got there and started signing books. We were only in line 15 minutes after that to get our book signed. I didn't actually get a picture of him signing our book, but I did get some good pictures of while we were waiting. If I didn't feel so utterly exhausted, I would go back out to the car to get my purse and cell phone, but I don't want to have to face coming back up the stairs and the resulting three contractions. I need my energy. Going all the way down there, back up, and the contractions is too tiring. So, I hope that I post the pictures soon. We had a good time though, and over all, today was a great day. Now, I'm pooped, and I'm getting ready to prepare the youth Sunday school lesson for tomorrow. The usual teacher is out of town, and he subbed for me, so I'm returning the favor. Good luck to all, and best wishes to all in their Happy Thanksgiving preparations.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Cancer

I called my mom today on my way home from my routine appointment with the midwife. I just wanted to reassure her that everything is great. Also, I wanted to ask how my dad is doing because we got an email last night that he's in the hospital with pneumonia. My mom said that the pneumonia is getting better because he was on five liters of oxygen yesterday morning, and by last night, he was on plain room air. That's a good sign. However, the bad news is that the cancer in his abdomen is back, and it's never going away. His 3-6 months he was given is now for sure. Because of my pregnancy, I can't hop on a plane and go see him. I'm truly grateful for my time in September. Soon, I hope to write a tribute to my dad.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Good baby

So, today, I had yet another ultrasound. The baby is growing really well. He wouldn't show us his face again, so I have no pictures to post, but the Dr. said that he's measuring at roughly 4 1/2 lbs. He just has to stay in there a few more weeks, and he'll be fine. His lungs look good, and he's measuring really well. He wouldn't show us his face because he's so low that they couldn't see my cervix either. They couldn't get around each side to see him. I haven't done any damage to myself, but I am planning on taking it easy. I hope he stays in there about three or four more weeks or so, and then I would be quite happy if he came on out, so we can meet him. :) Good luck to my little guy. He's working on getting born the natural way, so I won't have to have another C-section. What a good little guy.

My LSAT Score

I got my LSAT score a little while ago, but I am sort of not happy about it, so I don't think that I posted about it.

The LSAT is measured on a curve. The lowest scores are scored 120, the median score is 150, and the highest score possible is 180. I got a 156 which is somewhere around the 50-60th percentile. It's not a great score, but after talking to a lawyer that got into all 15 law schools to which he applied, I'm not as worried about getting accepted somewhere if I really do decide to apply and go to law school. It's been a dream of mine for quite some time, but at the same time, I don't want to miss out on the lives of my children either. I guess it's just a lot of time to spend on my knees. We'll see how things go once Rob gets into his program.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Not just another lazy day

So, this morning, I was really looking forward to today. I woke up thinking, "All I have to do today is teach my seminary class, and then I can go home and rest while I watch the kids." Note to self: Whenever you think that, FIND SOMETHING ELSE TO DO!!! Instead, I got a call from one of my very best friends saying, "Would you mind coming over to help me pack today? We have to move out." Her husband got fired from his job earlier this month, but they weren't that worried because he expected his pay check to be 2000 more dollars than the paycheck he got. . . His boss just decided not to turn in the papers that would give him the commission he earned through the month of October. So they can't pay their rent. This means that they have to move in with his mom while he looks for a job. I did spend the day helping her take care of her kids and taking care of Ben while Grandma spent some special time helping Jackie make cookies. I also helped her pack quite a bit of her house. She is planning on moving out this weekend. I did not pick up any boxes that had been filled, and I successfully kept from lifting Ben today! Three cheers for me. I did not run today either, so there's another cheer for me. I hope that I can keep this up. So far, it's kind of like this blog. One day at a time. If I forget, oops Oh well, I just need to keep going and trying to see how well I can do.

I guess that's like life too. I'm never going to be perfect, but in everything I do, I just need to keep going even after I've messed up once. So far, I'm doing pretty well.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Really On Restriction

OK, so I'm lucky that I'm not on bed rest, but I went in for a biophysical profile (also called a BPP) for Ben today. A BPP is an ultrasound where they look for certain things. One of those things is to see how well the baby is moving, and another is to see if the placenta is still attached. Everything came out good. The test came out good, but I'm still on restriction. I cannot lift Ben at all, and I cannot run at all. I'm having too many Braxton Hicks. . . I'm alright, and I'm going to be really careful. Today at story time, the other moms helped me chase Ben, so I wouldn't have to run. We'll make it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

On Restriction

When the nurse told me on Saturday night in the Triage unit that I wouldn't be able to lift anything heavy, I specifically asked her "How heavy is heavy?" She said, "You can most definately not pick up your children." I knew that would be hard, but I had no idea how hard. Ben takes off his shoes all the time, and it's been cold. Also, I have to be able help my kids get down the stairs even when they don't want to go. I'm not sure how much longer I can do this, but I don't want to end up on full bed rest. So, I am going in for my BPP test tomorrow at one. I'm really hoping that I can get off restriction afterward, but things aren't looking good for that. I thought I was supposed to get the test today, but they couldn't get me in. It's a really busy office, so I'm not surprised. I guess I'll let people know how things go again tomorrow.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Cheated

I guess I sort of unknowingly cheated yesterday. THanks to Rob for posting for me last night. However, the rules of NaBloPoMo weren't broken. The only rule is to have a post for every day, and it doesn't say that the same person has to post each time. So, a great big Thank You to my loving husband who watches over me so well.

I do have to call the Dr. for a certain test tomorrow as soon as the office opens. We'll just have to see how that goes, I guess. Until now, I'm under restriction from the Dr: No heavy lifting. This does pertain to Ben, and I have already messed up a couple times today. However, I would for sure have held him more if I could have, so I'm thinking that I'm still better off than if I'd hauled him around all day. I'm really sure that the baby is fine, but I had a whole bunch of Braxton Hicks all in a row yesterday, and I wanted to make sure that I was alright. I do feel better after having gone to the Dr. We'll see how everything else goes at all of my appointments this week.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Placeholder

This post will serve as a placeholder until the actual post about today is written. Forgive Ellie for not writing it today, but trust me when I say it has been one of the longest we've ever had.

Quick facts:
1) Awakened in the morning by the front desk informing us our car was broken into
2) Taking hours to deal with the police and cleanup
3) Taking more hours to find an adequate cover for the broken window so we could drive home
4) Stopping at the hospital on the way home to make sure there wasn't a premature labor going
5) Finally getting home just after 11PM

Fortunately, we did both make the temple last night, so the purpose of our trip was not thwarted.

- Robert, making a note for Ellie

Friday, November 14, 2008

When ECing is not an option

There was a little while this summer where Ben was very much into ECing. He would tell me pee pee or poopy when he needed to go to the bathroom. In fact, he had three days when he was completely dry. Then, he started taking off his diaper and trying to pee anywhere but his diaper or the potty. So I laid off. Now, he is not interested. AT ALL. In fact, he is to the point where he will tell me he is not poopy if he is. I'm just waiting for awhile to see if he has another sensitive period, and then we'll do some sort of conventional potty training. I think that talking about it and being open to the child's wants is one of the biggest parts of ECing. Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Update

Just so everyone knows, I am planning on telling the Dr. at my next appointment, and if I see any blood or have any big problems before then, I won't hesitate to drive all the way to Tallahassee and go in. I also have an ultrasound scheduled for a week from today, so I'm not too extremely worried about it. Once the initial pain went away, I've mostly been fine. I'm sore but it's more like muscle sore than the hurt was at first. :) I just scared myself a bit yesterday, but I really think I'm alright. The baby has been moving, and I am not having big contractions, so that's a good sign. :) Also, I have been good about not chasing Ben today.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fall

Today, Jackie kept asking over and over, "What season is it, Mommy? Summer?" I would always reply, "No, Jackie, it's fall right now."
Apparently, my body took that to heart. We had gone over to my friend Danielle's house this afternoon, and the kids had been running around outside a lot. The weather is beautiful in the afternoons! Then, we went inside, and I guess Ben got a little bit of cabin fever for the little while we were inside because as soon as it was time to go, and I got the kiddos outside, he started to run away. I stepped forward to grab him, and my foot kept sliding. Both of my feet slid out from underneath me, and I fell hard on my hip. I haven't felt quite the same the rest of the day. I'm hoping that I'm alright. I'm not bleeding, and my water didn't break, so I'm thinking I'm alright. However, when I fell, I felt really wet for a minute. As soon as the horrible pain went away enough for me to be able to stand up, I went in to the bathroom. I lost a good chunk of mucus. I'm slightly worried. I'm just going to be really careful for the next few days, and I'm going to be on the lookout for any signs that anything is wrong. The baby is moving a bunch, but it doesn't feel frantic, so I think we're alright. Sheesh though. It really scared me!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Preliminary Finding

So, after trying both the knit wrap and the cotton homespun wrap (with borrowing my friend Danielle's baby) I have decided that both of them have good and bad to them. The homespun wrap is not as movable once it is tied either in the back or the front. The knit wrap, however, is very easy to maneuver once the baby is in, and it's on. That one feature of both of them is both a pro and a con for both of them. If you are going to carry a baby bigger than say, 20 pounds, I would recommend the non-stretchy material for a wrap. If you have a new born that would need to be moved to nurse and then put back in a different fashion, then go for the kit. The knit is so stretchy, that sometimes the baby seems to slip around a little more, and it's harder to get the fabric tight. But the woven wrap was good to keep the baby in the same space, but I had to keep untying it when she would get tired of being in the same position so long. I may change my mind after my own little guy comes along, but that's the consensus with my friend's six week old girl who is about 11 pounds. If anyone has more experience, feel free to share it in the comments section.

Monday, November 10, 2008

A great family night

In our church, we set aside one night per week (for most families, it's usually Monday) to have a night with our family. We call it Family Home Evening. The purpose of this is to teach us how to get along with each other and to like each other, and ultimately, to learn how to want to hang out together. For this time, our family usually sings an opening and closing song, has an opening and closing prayer, and has a short little lesson. After that's over, the highlight is having treats. Then we play with the kids a few extra minutes before bedtime. At our house, we're lucky if we keep the kids' attention for 15 minutes, but it seems good. Tonight, we went over to a friends' house and had a combined Family Home Evening with their family. The lesson we dis turned out great! We did a flannel board story of The Good Samaritan. Here is the link where I printed the pictures from to make the pieces with. I just printed out the pictures on a piece of cardstock, and then I colored them and covered the entire back of the paper with rubber cement (Make sure you don't miss any or it might be a critical piece that falls off in the middle of the story.). Then, I stuck a paper sized piece of flannel to the back. After that, then I used some good paper scissors (But NOT my fabric scissors) and cut out the pieces.

To make the flannel board itself, I cut a good sized but not huge piece of cardboard, probably about 24" by 18". After that, I painted the card board really well with the rubber cement. Then, I very carefully, but quickly due to the drying nature of rubber cement, spread flannel over the entire board but I left about an extra inch and a half of flannel hanging over each side. I turned over the cardboard and painted two opposite sides with the glue and then pressed the fabric down over them. Then I painted the other two sides including the parts already covered by fabric and I pressed the fabric over those. The corner fabric will fold up on itself and stick. However, for good measure, I taped down the edges with packaging tape. Wherever there was a lose end of the fabric, I taped it down to the cardboard.

Although this process seemes involved, this doesn't have to take long. This worked a lot better for me because I wasn't trying to make it perfect. All of the kids loved it, and the older ones helped me read it from Luke 10 while the younger kids helped me put up the pieces. I might try a different one in a few weeks since it worked so well.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Stretchy versus non stretchy

OK, all, I've read a lot about wraps the last few days, and I've seen different people say things about stretchy wraps and I've seen other places recommend you get a fabric with stretch like knit or fleece. So, the wraps I made the other day were out of a ribbing, (read knit that you put around the top of a sweatshirt for people who are not sewing inclined.) so it was pretty stretchy. The other fabric I bought is a homespun 100% cotton. I don't have a baby yet to really try these with (I've been borrowing my friend's), but if anyone has an opinion on when and why stretchy or non stretchy would be better, please let me know. Thanks!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Productive

Do you ever feel like some days, you're on top of the world and you can do anything, and other days, you just want to stay in your bed, pull the covers up over your head, and never see the world again because you just know that no matter how much you try to get done that day, you won't have made a dent? Usually, lately, my days are the second type, but I get up anyway. Today however, my day was the first one.

I successfully got Jackie to do 4 sets of 15 minutes and get her room completely clean. Then, the kids and I built towers out of blocks, and they shared and had all sorts of fun. Jackie would build a tower, and Ben would say, "Jackie, I knock over you tower?" And she'd tell him whether or not she was finished. As soon as she was finished, she would gleefully say, OK, Ben, knock it over. Ben would reply. "OK Jackie, I knock it over now." He'd run full speed ahead and kick it. Then, he'd go gather up all the blocks, and beg for her to "build it" again. It was lovely.

We spent three hours at the park on a picnic today, and then we also spent time at my friend Kim's house tonight where the adults played games while the kids did a great job of sharing. They were getting along great. I feel great about today!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Tagged Again

My friend Kim (who has several blogs) tagged me, and since this month I'm scraping for anything to blog about, I'll take a few memes.

A. Attached or single? Attached. Very attached. I love Rob!
B. Best friend? Rob
C. Cake or pie? Do I have to choose? How about both! OK, well not pumpkin or pecan pie or red velvet cake. Other wise, bring it on!
D. Day of choice? Saturday
E. Essential item? Laptop
F. Favorite color? Green or turquoise
G. Gummy bears or worms? Cinnamon bears
H. Hometown? Monticello. If you can guess the state, you didn't grow up with me, and you're not married to me, 10 points for you!
I. Favorite indulgence? Jamba Juice (Tropical Smoothie is NOT the same. . .)
J. January or July? In GA, January. It's gorgeous.
K. Kids? Two and 2/3. Jackie is 4, Ben is 2, and Our Little Guy maybe named Daniel is coming sometime in January.
L. Life isn’t complete without? Rob, the kids, and chocolate.
M. Marriage date? July 2003
N. Number of magazine subscriptions: One. Rob's sister Anne got me the Readers' Digest for Christmas last year.
O. Oranges or apples? Depends on when and where. If it's Christmas time in Mesa, definitely the oranges.
P. Phobias? Can't think of one right now, but it's not the usual stuff.
Q. Quotes? "Service is like peeing your pants, everyone else can see it, but only you can feel the warmth." "Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday." Authors unknown to both.
R. Reasons to smile? When I see Rob playing with my kids. Also, when Rob and Todd get together. I always laugh so hard!
S. Season of choice? Probably autumn. I love the leaves! (Also, the weather is almost always nice in the fall wherever you go.)
T. Tag 5 people. Not sure I want to tag anyone. I've tagged a bunch of people lately. If you want to do this, consider yourself tagged. Come back and tell me, and I'll come comment on your blog.
U. Unknown fact about me? I'm not sure, my life is pretty much an open book. But one thing most people don't know is that I had a skin surgery when I was 2, and the Dr. gave me enough medicine that I should have been completely out. I was so scared that it still took my dad, two of my brothers, and the Dr. to hold me down during the surgery. That's the story of my life. I am THAT stubborn.
V. Vegetable? Steamed broccoli and steamed cauliflower.
W. Worst habit? Not sharing that. You may not ever hang out with me again.
X. X-ray or ultrasound? Ultrasound.
Y. Your favorite foods? Popcorn, Cheetos, and milk. . . I pretty much lived on those while I was in college and single. Rob didn't think it was a healthy idea, so it stopped once I got married.
Z. Zodiac sign? Pisces

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I can't find my FrankenKozy!

I have a mei-tai style sling that I made using these directions. (Jan at sleepingbaby.net has a whole bunch of great sewing goodies for moms of young children, please go check her out. I'm sending you to the entire site, so if you want a ring sling, feel free to peruse, but if not, over on the right hand side on the top tool bar, there is an about sbp link. Under that, click on do it yourself.) My FrankenKozy is wonderful! In fact, it's so wonderful that I made two and used them both. My new problem is that I can't find it, and I must have put it in storage. A lot of my sewing stuff went to storage, but this is one thing that I'm slightly devestated about. When I find it, I'm hoping to do a post about the different styles of baby wearing instruments I have tried out and which ones I like most and which ones I don't. There. You all have something to look forward to.

At this point, you have several things: Upcoming sometime next week is hopefully a step by step instruction list of how to make Thai sticky rice. Also, a review on different types of slings. Just lots of goodies to come!

New Cell Phone

I missed a day, and I know that it's against the spirit of the NaBlo but I'm going to do two posts today instead. It is now 5:40 in the morning. I went to bed last night at 9:30 exhausted, and since my iron is low and I'm six months pregnant, I am not sure that I could have had any type of coherent post last night.

Well, Tuesday morning, I plugged in my cell phone, and it didn't start charging. A while ago, I pulled the charger out, and it had broken in my phone. I have been making due with the broken charger, but all of a sudden, the broken charger didn't work. My phone died. I can't get the charger to work at all in any way anymore, and now all of my calendar, my phone list, and everything is gone! However, after three hours in the alltel store, on the bright side, I now have a beautiful new LG Scoop. It's pretty fun. :)

Also, I made a babywearing wrap yesterday. I had my friend with her new baby come over, so we could try it out, and it was great! We're both so excited. I'll write a whole post about that at some point when I can get a couple of pictures to put on it. :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day

I almost named this post Sionara, but I decided that election day was better. I'm working on keeping back my tears while we watch the election results roll across the screen. I feel like I'm watching my freedom go out the window a little bit at a time as each state goes either red or blue. Anyway, congrats to Barack Obama.

Ben and I went to the Dr. today, and I am pleased to say that we only have viral upper resperatory tract infections instead of strep throat. They prescribed us some medicine to help us with our symptoms, and we're excited about that. I bought some fabric today, so I can try to make myself a wrap. (I just bought 5 yards of machine wash and dry fabric, and I'm going to cut the 60 inch wide fabric into three and use a surge stitch on the edges.) I am going to try to sew some tonight. I won't be sleeping very soon.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Help Support Mamograms

The Breast Cancer Site has a goal to donate one mammogram to a person in need every day. However, they are having a hard time doing it. They have sponsors who pay them per click on a certain button. You don't have to buy something (but that does encourage the sponsors.) Just go to this link, and click on the button. Help a woman in need and maybe save a life.

http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Fast Sunday

So, I have a really hard time on Fast Sundays while I'm pregnant. I feel like I'm missing something. But today, both of my kids had green snot coming out of their noses, and they were both running low grade fevers, so they had to stay home from church. Grandma and Papa weren't feeling very well either, so they volunteered to watch the kids. That was a huge blessing for me because the Primary president was sick, the first counselor was out of town, and the second counselor just got released a couple weeks ago and called to be the Young Women's president. With no primary presidency in the primary, someone had to fill in. The primary president asked me to do that. I didn't mind. However, I was really wondering this morning when both of my kids woke up sick how we would handle that. Rob was filling in for the youth sunday school teacher who was also out of town. In our branch, there is a large shortage of substitutes for things like that.

Filling in for primary was a blessing though. I got really lucky. Since my kids weren't there, and I had to be there, I had the opportunity to sit through an entire fast and testimony meeting. I felt like I should get up and say my testimony simply because I had the opportunity, and I was so grateful to be listening to an entire meeting! I also volunteered to play the organ today. Do you know how nice it is to hear the organ instead of the CD's? Anyway, I know that this might not make sense to everyone. In our church, the first Sunday in each month is set aside for fasting (but pregnant women are not supposed to fast) and on that same Sunday, we don't schedule sermons or talks. People from the congregation are given a chance to stand up and tell about their testimony of the gospel and our savior. The Holy Ghost is very strong at these meetings. I was very grateful to be able to listen, and maybe Heavenly Father just knew that I needed this more than anything else right now. I needed a time to be taught instead of always to teach.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

First NaBloPoMo

Today is the first day of my NaBloPoMo. I'm really going to work at this. Today was supposed to be a post saying how a "bathroom day" with Ben went, but he woke up with green snot pouring out of his nose, and he woke up really tired because he couldn't breathe in the middle of the night. Therefore, I did not just hang out with Ben in the bathroom today. I did get our new bassinet put together though. (My current bed is NOT safe for co-sleeping, and there is no chance to make it so, hopefully more on this later, with pictures.) Also, we watched the GA/FLA game, and it was horrible. I have never seen GA play so badly, nor have I seen so many bad ref calls. I'm not even a fan of GA, but at the end of the day, I do feel like UGA got the short end of the stick. Hopefully, I have more interesting stuff tomorrow.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The NaBloPoMo

So, I've seen NaBloPoMo around in many places, and I never knew what it meant. I finally looked it up on the internet. It means that a blogger posts every day for a month. So, for the month of November, my goal is to do one blog post every day. Some of them may be dumb, and some of them may be great, but I think that this will make me a better writer, and it will help me be a better journal writer. :) So, look forward to a post a day *crossing fingers* starting November 1.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Freedom

Disclaimer: This post is not very well put together and may not be coherent to anyone but me, so it's really just a journal entry, but I felt like I need to post it publicly in an attempt at explaination to my readers for the way I am and for some of my readers to understand why certain things fit into the parenting category for me.

When I first had Jackie, I had seen many of my brothers and sisters be parents, and I had a good bunch of babysitting experience. I knew how to change a diaper, and I knew the basics of child care. I knew that I wanted to breastfeed if only for the immunity benefits, but there are a whole bunch more benefits that come from breast feeding. My sister-in-law gave me The Baby Book by William Sears.

It was so full of good, practical advice that it made me look into attachment parenting. I was already working hard to breastfeed, and my friend Crissy showed me this awesome pattern for sewing a tube sling and baby wearing just made sense. Also, I had heard that you can spoil a baby by always responding to their cries right on time. This book rapidly changed those fears, and I felt good about holding Jackie anytime she cried, and I felt relieved to have medical permission to co-sleep if I chose to. I started only basing my parenting on just what felt right and what was natural, and that's how I found Elimination Communication. People have been parenting for a long time without diapers, and it made sense to me that babies wouldn't want to sit in their own pee any more than an adult or a dog does. So, my parenting style became all about communication and working to talk with my kids.

Once kids get to be two, some of the attachment parenting ideas like baby wearing (although once in awhile Ben still likes and wants to get in the sling) and for me breastfeeding have become obsolete. We still cuddle a lot, and touch is really important to my parenting, but at the same time, I have tried to figure out how to parent an older child as naturally as possible.

Children naturally hit and kick each other or get angry when someone takes a toy. There has to be a way to teach them that certain behaviors are not acceptable. I have thought about this long and hard, and for me, choices come with consequences in life. Every choice comes with consequences either positive or negative. I want my kids to see this as the natural way of things. If you put the bobby pin in the wall outlet, you will get shocked. As a mom, I try to let my kids get natural consequences as much as possible, but in this case, I will take my kid away and try to give him/her a safer consequence.

In my most recent bout with Jackie this week, I have thought a lot about consequences and freedom. Sometimes, it seems like we think that freedom means that we get to make all the choices we want and there are no consequences. Consequence free choices=freedom in some way. However, there is no consequence free choice. Freedom is the right to choose. Once we choose, we have to deal with whatever outcome happens from that choice. For me, this is imperative to my ideals of natural parenting. If Jackie chooses to break rules just because I'm not around, the consequence of that choice is that I need to be around all the time to help her stay safe. (Thus, we had to have a leash time.) If she chooses the other side and chooses to follow the rules, her consequence is that she gets more time to decide which good toys to play with, and she seems to have a much better time. (She really didn't like the leash time. My activities weren't fun for her.) I guess, for me, this is where politics ties into my parenting style. If we make certain choices in our government, we lose certain freedoms. If people are allowed to make certain choices, then other people aren't ever allowed to have any choices in life.

There are certain choices right now that everyone is faced with. Please weigh the consequences carefully. There are things that we want, but my question is: what are we giving up to have those options? If we give up our military funding for other programs, when we need our soldiers to keep us free, where will they be? And where will we be? We'll lose all of our freedom. We won't have the right to make very many choices at all. I guess that's why parenting and politics go together for me. The very most fundamental in my own parenting style is that choices and consequences go together, and I guess, it's just how I see everything in life.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ben's Birthday Cake

Yes, as you saw in the previous post, Ben's cake was Elmo. I went to the local party supply store and looked for some Elmo things to make his party happy. He got a balloon, napkins, plates, and cups with Elmo and Sesame Street characters on them. However, I also saw the Elmo cake pan. I decided to try it, and as you saw, it turned out well. I had already bought a party cake mix from Wal-mart and some cream cheese frosting that I was going to put sprinkles on with some Elmo candies, but then I saw the cake mix, and I knew he'd love it. Every time he sees a picture of Elmo, he says, "Mama, make Elmo cake?" He wants another one.



The cake pan was sort of expensive, but not as expensive as buying a cake usually is, so I'm posting my pictures of the process in case someone else decides to be brave and try. (P.S. I didn't try to pipe the frosting on in stars, I used a rubber spatula and just normal cream cheese frosting instead of making butter cream.)

First, I just made the cake mix like the instructions on the back. And then I used Pam for baking (with flour in it) and sprayed the pan. I poured in the batter and spread it around with a spatula. Then I put it in the oven. It did take a little longer to bake, but the instructions for how long to bake it were on the inside of the pan when I bought it. (Being literate is definitely a blessing.) Once it came out of the oven, I let it cool in the pan for about 10 minutes and then I cut off the rounded part on the back to try to make it so it could lay flat on the pan. Then, I went around the edges with a rubber spatula and dumped onto the cooling rack. I left it on this rack for a little more than an hour, so it would cool well and not fall apart when I frosted it.

Then, I took a cookie sheet with a flat side and just slid it under the cake. You can use a cookie sheet and a cake board instead, but I already had the cookie sheet, and it worked well. Then, I sorted two cans of frosting into several bowls. I put about one whole can of frosting into a big mixing bowl and dumped in a whole bunch of red cake frosting food coloring. I didn't quite use enough, so it was still slightly pink, but that stuff gets everywhere, and I have an uncanny talent for huge messes, so I decided to quit while I was ahead and use the pink.


Then, in one of the smaller bowls, I put black food coloring. I did buy the black from the party store, too because it's almost impossible to mix black. I used a large amount of black for the small amount of frosting, partly so I wouldn't have gray and the black turned out alright. OK, so I'm really cheap, and I didn't want to get cake decorating stuff just for the mouth and eyes, so I used a plastic zipper bag and cut off the corner. (If you want to try this, I highly suggest from experience (see above about the messes?) that you get a brand name one that you know the zipper will STAY closed on.)

Then, I squirted it out of the bag onto the mouth. Then, I very carefully used a rubber spatula to make the red. It worked out well. I wanted it to be fluffy, so I purposely didn't try to spread it straight. I went different directions, and I kept pushing the spatula into the frosting and lifting it out. It turned out pretty well. Once the red was done, I added some yellow to it to make the orange for the nose. Then, I used a butter knife to spread the nose. I wanted it to be as smooth as possible. It didn't come out completely smooth, but I feel like I did well. Then, I used some white that I saved out and didn't color for the eyes. I used a different butter knife and spread the eyes. Then, I used my trusty plastic bag again and did the black spot on the eyes.

Ben knew at first site who it was. He pointed right to it, his smile went all the way across his face, and he said, "ELMO!" There are quite a few cake pans out there, so if you want to do a kids' b-day party, this was fun, educational for me, and cheaper than buying an Elmo cake from somewhere else. I'm thinking that next time I have a two year old b-day I'll try again with the Elmo. I'm thinking that for Jackie, we might get brave enough to try Tinkerbell. . . :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ben's Birthday

Ben's two year old birthday was on the 10th of this month. It was just a tiny deal with one of our closest friends' families, our family, and Grandma and Papa. He loved it. I'm sorry that this post has taken so long because I know that my kids' pictures are some of the favorite posts from most of my readers. I need to be better at downloading my pictures to my computer from my camera. So enjoy the pictures from Ben's birthday.


Ben loving his birthday cake.

Ben loves Elmo. Having an Elmo theme was Jackie's idea because she saw the plates and knew he'd love this. Here's his cake.

Ben's cake with two candles

Ben Blowing out his candles

The kids at their table eating the cake. Dinner was not nearly this exciting!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Rebellion

I believe that children thrive off boundaries. However, I also realize that sometimes they are going to test their boundaries. Jackie has been testing boundaries quite a bit right now. In the past two weeks, she has given herself a haircut, (with the adult scissors that she knows she's not supposed to have) dumped yogurt onto the floor, tried to climb over the banister, gone downstairs anytime she can without permission, (not usually a problem for most families, but I do live with my inlaws) and generally just trying to do whatever she can that she knows is against the rules to see if I'll notice if she does it when I'm not directly watching. She's also been doing the same types of things at school.

We had a very frank discussion at bedtime last night. I told her that if she can't follow the rules when I'm not watching her, then I'm just going to have to watch her all the time. I don't really believe in putting a leash on a child, but I'm at the end of my rope. If I can't trust her to follow the rules when I'm not around her, then I am just going to have to keep her by me all the time for a little while. I figure one day on a leash, and we'll be able to start communicating and listening better to each other. Today, she has done really well, and she didn't get in trouble at school either. I'm hoping that just our talk did it, and I won't have to resort to backing myself up. Please cross your fingers for me.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hold my nose and vote

I have some strong objections to John McCain. I feel like in this election, I am choosing between Socialism lite and Communism in my vote. McCain/Palin is socialism lite, and Barack Obama with his comments about the "need to spread the wealth around" are the communism wolf not even trying to disguise himself as a sheep. So, I went to the polls this week (Since they changed the law in the State if GA, and we can vote this early.) and voted for the McCain/Palin team.

Here are my big three reasons.

1) Abortion. This is my big fat number 1. Although I am a staunch pro-life woman, even if I greed with first trimester abortion, I definately don't and never will agree with third trimester abortions. Babies have been viable even in the second trimester, so how can someone not call a baby born in the third trimester a baby? Legal murder and I don't get along, and I cannot see how a third trimester abortion is anything but legal murder. Barack Obama voted three times to keep infanticide legal in the state of Illinois. Since he did that, he has also stated that he wouldn't want his daughter "punished with a baby." Adoption is an option. The guilt felt over an abortion would haunt his daughter for the rest of her life. Please watch the movie below.

This movie is about a nurse's experience with infanticide. This is even worse than abortion.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIdbYjmbFzo These babies were alive when they were born too early on purpose.

2) National Health Care. Both candidates have some sort of national health care plan, which I think is all about taking money from some people in the form of higher tax brackets and giving it to people in the lower tax brackets. I believe that people should be able to keep what they earn in most cases. The reason that we have a Federal Government is for our protection. One of my favorite sayings is this: "Any Government strong enough to give us anything we want is strong enough to take away everything you have." (Gerald Ford. Presidential Address 12 August 1974).

3) Patriotism: John McCain spent time actively fighting for my freedom. I know that he knows the true value of freedom. Barack Obama's wife said that "For the first time in my adult life, I'm proud of my country."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYY73RO_egw

I've been proud to be an American my entire life. I grew up loving this country and having respect for the flag. Maybe it's because my dad was a Major in the Air Force, and I had an uncle who died in Vietnam, but I always grew up with a deep sense of love for America and a knowledge of the price of freedom. I'm intensely grateful for all the soldiers and what they choose to do with their lives for me. I can't stomach the idea of putting someone in the whitehouse who supports a wife who has not felt that love for this country.

I admit that McCain has his x's against him as well. However, I think that there are times when certain things have to be weighed against one another. I would like to cast a vote for a write in for Mitt Romney, but I really felt like I had to cast a vote against Barack Obama for number 1 if for nothing else. There is a part of me that needs to share with some of my friends who have sincerely asked for some info on candidates, so I am posting this info for anyone who wants to know. Please pray about your decision before you go to the poll, and carefully weigh the issues that truly are important to you. I'll still love any of you if you vote for Obama, but you can see why I can't. Good luck to all of you, but just remember to be a part of the American system and go vote on or before Election day depending on the laws in your state or county.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

For anyone wondering.

The type of rice in the bottom picture is Thai sticky rice. It's my absolute favorite. My friend who comes to clean my house gave me a Thai steamer, and it's wonderful. Next time I get around to thinking about it and getting to it early enough in the day, then my plan is to take pictures and post instructions on How to make Thai sticky rice. It's yummy, and it's actually one of the only types of rice that doesn't make me sick. ON top of that, I really love it. It's a shame that this much rice went to waste. . .

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Happy Birthday Rob

So, Rob already knows what he's getting for his birthday because we're used to talking to each other about anything over $20. Since his present cost quite a bit more than that, then he knows what he's getting. However, I think that the Wii will be good for our family, and he'll really like it. I also think that it will be good excersize for all of us, and I think that we'll want to excersize more when it's hot outside. We've been good about going on walks, but it's better when we don't have to go outside in the heat. :)

I love you bunches, Rob. Happy Birthday to you!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Unintentional Science experiment

Well, about a month ago, I found a Tupperware container in the fridge. I know, as a general rule, I never open the Tupperware containers I find in the fridge unless I’m absolutely certain what’s in them, and whatever was put there has been put there within the last week. Well, this one, I knew was a certain type of rice, so I wasn’t particularly worried at first. I noticed that it had a small amount of green color so I left the container on the upstairs counter. About a week later, (I know, nasty, but you have to realize that I’m living in the upstairs portion of my mom-in-law’s house, and I have to worry more about keeping my kids from destroying the downstairs portion and from destroying anything in her house.) I got up the gumption to open the container. Rob had told me that it needed to go, and it needed to go now. I decided that if it were as colorful as he said it was, then I ought to take a picture for posterity.


Three points for anyone who can tell me what type of rice this is, and an extra point for someone who can name all seven different colors of mold.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

To the interesting stuff

So. I love the awards and tags, but my life has been so crazy lately that I'm sure you're dying for some of the nuances of what's been going on.


As I said before, I FINALLY finished my quilt!!!!!! YES!!! Here are a few pictures.



It really is a beautiful quilt, made all the more beautiful by the knowledge that it's on its way to California. :) Also, I'm hoping to post some things about our trip to Utah. I was going to take lots of pictures of the beautiful mountains and landscape on the way from Salt Lake to Phoenix via St. George, but my camera batteries died in the middle. I'll post a few pictures though. I loved my visit to Utah. My dad seems like he's going to make it through the radiation alright, and if it works, he'll have some good months.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Tagged

OK, this is my last of the three tag/award posts. In this case, I have been tagged. My friend Katie tagged me quite a while ago. I'm sorry that it has taken me this long, but at least I'm back to blogging at least once a week. I should be able to do some catch up posts in the near future because this coming week is Fall Break, and I don't have to teach Seminary. Also, I don't have my quilt to sew!!!


Here are the rules to the tag:

1) Link to the person who tagged you.
2) Post the rules on your blog (copy and paste 1-6).
3) Write 6 random things about yourself (see below).
4) Tag 6 people at the end of your post.
5) Let them know they are tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
6) Let the tagger (who tagged you) know when your post is up

So, here are the six random things about me.

1) I absolutely love to read LDS fiction. I'm crazy for what my friend Tracy calls paper doll books. They're all the same story with different dresses. Maybe it's because I can read one in about four-five hours, and then leave it and be happy with just getting to escape life for a few hours.

2) I have a passion for the criminal justice system. I love it. I think that our system in America, while flawed, is incredible. In fact, I'm taking the LSAT tomorrow. Wish me luck.

3) I don't brush my teeth nearly enough. I know, it's a nasty habit. I'm working on it. My mom says I need to love myself more. She's probably right.

4) I don't brush my hair much either. That's an OK habit though because you can't really tell whether it's brushed or not. :) I love that.

5) My eyes are hazel. Most people think they're brown, but if you get close enough, you realize that they're really green with orange in them, so they look brown once you're about two feet away or so. (Jackie's eyes are like mine.)

6) This one is from Rob: Loves watching football but won't admit it. I'm leaving that in. I can think of about 50 things I'd rather do than watch a football game, but I have to admit, that I like the big plays.

So, I have already sent a whole bunch of people things. However, I think that I'm going to tag my sister-in-law Darlene, my sister Martha, my friend Jamie, my friend Emily, my friend Crissy (who I hope this will encourage to post a little more often ;)) and Julie Pippert (who needs a little fun in her life right now after Hurricane Ike, she could probably use a few prayers too, to anyone who wants to send some.)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Blog awards post number 2

Here is another blog awards post. My friend Katie nominated me for this award.

Here are the rules to the award.

The winner can put the logo on their blog.
Link to the person you received your award from.
Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
Put links of those blogs on yours.
Leave a message on the blogs you've nominated.
Write an acceptance speech in the style of the Academy Awards, thanking everybody’s mother, father, sister, brother, aunties and uncles and the kitchen staff at your favorite restaurant!

I sent Katie an award Thursday, but I would like to to thank her nominating me for this award.

1) My first nominee is my friend Leah. She hosts a scrapbooking/parenting blog called Life As Lou. Right now, she's going through some tough times, but if you want to see some beautiful and awesome scrapbook pages, head on over there and check her out. (She's beautiful too!)

2) Second, I would like to nominate Melissa. Some of my very favorite posts to read ever are her posts about what she sees at the grocery store. She has found some strange items, but she's extremely insightful, and I love to read and comment on this blog.

3&4) My third and fourth nominees both host the same blog. Two Guys Making That Money. These people are my husband Robert and his best friend Todd. This really is one of my favorite blogs. Although Robert is the predominant poster at this point, some of my favorite posts ever written by anyone are posted by Todd. Therefore, I'm nominating them both and hoping that they will both respond.

5) For number five, I would like to nominate my friend Kimberly. She has several blogs. The link is to her OB Nurse blog, but she has a great blog of her photography. She can choose any of her blogs to respond to this with because they're all great. :) (This is the same Kimberly that sent me the award I posted about previously.)

6) This nomination goes to my friend Kristene. She almost always posts some sort of picture with any post. Since pictures are some of my favorite things, then I'm excited to see pictures on almost all her posts.

7) My final nomination is my sister-in-law Jill. All of her posts are fun. She also posts a lot of pictures. She doesn't post often, but every post is full of life, vigor, and love. I love you Jill!

I would like to thank Katie for nominating me for this award. Also, I'd like to thank my husband Robert for working hard to provide everything for me, and most especially for earning enough money for me to have several avenues to high speed internet access. :) OK, so the internet is not the most important thing to me, and I'd also like to thank Robert for supporting me in staying at home with my children. I'd like to thank my children for being such wonderful kids and also for providing so much blog fodder. Otherwise, I would never be nominated for any awards. My kids are most definitely the most entertaining part of my life. I'd also like to thank my mom and dad for raising me to be the kind of person I am, and I'd especially like to thank my dad for being the best type of example to me. His example keeps me going.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Awards and Tags

While I was taking my blog break and finishing my quilt, I got nominated for several awards and several of my friends tagged me. The next several posts will do with these items. I feel very grateful for all of my friends who thought of me, and I'm very grateful to have so many friends who blog and also grateful for other bloggers who have become my friends. :)

My first award is from my bloggy friend Melissa's blog.


This award is just an award from a friend to a really great blogger friend. I really appreciate Melissa's blog because she regularly makes me laugh but also because she has some different views than I have, and it makes me take another look at what I think. A great big Thank You to Melissa for this one. I'm going to pass it on to my friend Katie. If I ever look at a friend who describes all of the qualities named in the picture above, Katie would be one. She is always nice to people and honest with love. She is definitely trustworthy and honest, and she works really hard not to hurt people's feelings because she cares about everyone so much. Thanks to Katie for being such a great friend ever since we were in 5th grade.

The next award I have won is from my friend Kimberly. She's so awesome! I go out to lunch with her once a week (whenever I'm lucky enough.) She has the cutest little girl, and my kids love to play with her. As a labor and delivery nurse, she's always working for her patients, and she has some good insight into all of the physical aspects of having babies as well as the emotional aspects of raising her daughter. A huge thank you to Kim!


For this one, I'm going to pass it on to my other friend Kimberly, who with her husband hosts http://walkeringaround.blogspot.com.

I have another big award to do tomorrow, and I have been tagged, so I will do that post tomorrow. :)



Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I finally finished my quilt!!!!

I finally finished my quilt. I did it a few days ago, right before I left for our trip out west. To any readers that I may still have left, I hope that you still love me. I know that ditching my blog for a little bit wasn't a very nice thing to do, but really, something had to go. One thing that I'm certain about is that I cannot piece quilts for Ellie Bellie Baby. My quilt would have been complete a month before if not for the pieced top. Also, sewing for pay isn't nearly as much fun as sewing for my own family or a close friend. I'm going to include pictures of the quilt at the bottom of this post, so feel free to scroll down if you would like.

Right now, I'm out west with my dad, who is for sure dying. The Drs. have given him 3-6 months to live. I'm just grateful that I'm getting to spend this time with him. :) We went to a series of Dr. appointments yesterday, but since they were with my mom and dad, we actually had some fun. They gave him a room to lie down in between visits at the VA hospital, and that was really good for him. My parents and I played 5 Crowns (If you don't know this game, it's a great card game for anywhere between 2-6 players) and just had fun. I also got to talk to my dad quite a bit.

While I was with the Dr., Rob took the kids to a place in Downtown Salt Lake City called Discovery Gateway. They loved it! They had so much fun with the activities that Rob kept saying, "There's still more to see." I'm so glad that we got to come. And on the bright side, we still have until Sunday here in Salt Lake, and then we get to go back to Phoenix and hang out with my cousin and Rob's best friend again for a day before we fly out. :) We also get to stop on our way down there and see my brother. :) YAY!!!!

Stay tuned because my next post is going to entail some meme's that I've been passed along by several of my friends in my absence, and it will be pretty fun. (At least for me.)

Sunday, August 31, 2008

More and More crazy life

So, I haven't posted for awhile because I haven't been exactly sure what date I was supposed to post my MotherTalk book review, and I can't find out when it was supposed to be posted. So I have waited awhile to make sure it was live when it needed to be.

Also, things are just crazy. I have some really important news to share, but I am going to make myself a deal that I cannot blog until I finish my online driving course to keep the points off my license. I also cannot blog until I finish the quilt! My poor customer! I just haven't been able to sew like I want to. So, don't expect too many posts for a little while, but I have several posts running around in my head that I'm dying to share, so I'm hoping this will be strong motivation for me to finish my projects. Also, I have to finish a training class my new online tutoring job. Therefore, I really need to figure things out. I'm hoping that I can blog again by the end of the week. Rob will only have to work a half day tomorrow, so I'm really hoping to get a lot of this done. *crossing my fingers* Good luck to me!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Dangerous Days of Daniel X: A MotherTalk Book Review


I was really excited to open my door and find this book on my doorstep the other day. The Dangerous Days of Daniel X is a book by James Patterson which was written specifically to help young boys ages 10 and older want to read.


After reading this book, I would say that it does it. This book is full of alien chasing and super powers. Daniel's parents die when he's three years old, and he can conjure them up whenever he needs them. One of his best powers is that he can rearrange atoms and another best power is that he can change himself into different shapes. This book made me want to keep turning the pages just to see what happened.


One draw back is that there is a lot of gory stuff (the boy is trying to kill aliens) but the story would probably be appropriate for boys ages 10 and older. I wouldn't try to get anyone younger to read it though.


The Dangerous Days of Daniel X is a fast read with short chapters that will really help a young reader be able to put the book down and still want to pick it up again. Also, this book has a lot of really great action sequences that made me really want to keep going.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Our house, but not for long!!!!

So, yesterday was circled with a big red mark on the calendar. Why? Because it was the end of the 20 days in which the buyers had to back out. They didn't! YIPPEEE!!!!!!!!! They are now stuck with a house that will close on Aug 27 at 4 pm. Yes. I did say that the house will close, and less than two weeks from now, we should have a big chunk of cash deposited in our bank account.

Rob and I are thinking of looking into houses that are going into foreclosure from tax leins, so we can buy a house (without a loan) wherever he ends up for school. Any one have any good ideas on that?

There is a hump day hmm today, and I might get to it later tonight and post it tomorrow, but I'm really not sure that I want to share something that personal on this blog right now. . . Anyway, so I'm really excited about our house selling for sure, and it's one more hurdle we've passed on our way to helping Rob acheive his dreams.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

South Georgia Rain

It was a cold and rainy night. . .

I used to think that the above phrase was redundant. If it's a rainy night, of couse it's cold. Enter south Georgia summers. The other day, the temperature was 90 degrees outside, and it had rained pretty hard. Jackie and Ben wanted to go outside and blow bubbles. The sky was still spitting at us, and you could feel the mist, but the hard rain was gone, so I decided that blowing bubbles was fine. The puddles were warm, and the rain that was still coming down, or just appearing out of nowhere and hitting my skin, was probably about 90 degrees as well. When the bubbles would hit the wet cement, they wouldn't pop. I thought, "YAY, I'll go get my camera" and by the time I came back, the kids were done blowing bubbles. They had dumped it all over them, and Jackie and Ben were in desperate need of a bath. So, we had all sorts of fun blowing bubbles in the south Georgia rain, but the bath time was fun, too.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Scarecrow and Mrs. King

I remember when I was growing up, (I couldn't have been more than seven) my family would all get together one night a week and watch Scarecrow and Mrs. King and then right after that, we'd watch Remington Steele. I really loved Scarecrow and Mrs. King, and I've remembered it over and over with all of the crime solving shows I've watched. This show is sort of like a cross between Numb3rs and MacGuyver. (I love both of those shows, too.) Well, I found a place to watch it for free on the internet.

Now, on the whole, I'm not a big fan of AOL, but AOL has full episodes of old TV shows for free! I have been quite happily running Scarecrow episodes while I wait with the kids at bedtime or while I'm working on cutting out my quilt pieces. I am a happy woman!!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Seminary

OK, so I'm LOVING teaching seminary. It's hard, and I'm going to be more than exhausted by the time fall break rolls around in October, but I'm loving it. My girls are totally awesome! Behavior problems don't exist, and they all have some great questions. We've been working together to find answers in the scriptures. So far, we've only had an introduction to The New Testament and talked about the plan of salvation, but we'll actually get into the New Testament starting Monday. I'm totally excited!

However, I have not yet started my quilt in any fashion except to get the fabric preshrunk, but now that I've finished that, I'm going to start cutting on it. I think I can get it mostly cut out today during Ben's nap and tonight after I clean the kitchen.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Thinking that truly changed my world

This post, although I've had plenty of time to think about it, is not entirely well thought out, and you may have to excuse me.

This post is part of Julie's Hump Day Hmm. She posted the topic early last week, but I had no chance to post on it, and Mr. Linky didn't arrive at her blog until yesterday, so I'm going to post on this anyway. I think it's a great topic, but my post has several facets to the same thinking that changed my mind, my ways, and in some ways, my life.

One thing that changed my thinking was that I'm in charge of my own feelings. Other people cannot and do not have the power to MAKE me mad. They can heckle me all they want, but they can only make me mad if I choose to get mad. They are not in charge of my feelings. I had a tough time in school, and the boys really worked to make me unhappy. About my junior year of high school, I came to the realization that what they think really doesn't matter. It doesn't. They are working to bring me anger, but that's not up to them. Whether or not I get angry really is up to me. Miguel Ruiz's book called The Four Agreements really helped me see this idea. He calls it "Don't Take Anything Personally." What they think and do really is up to them. How I feel about it is what I'm in charge of. Abuse does hurt, but I can't be hurt unless I'm willing to be hurt. That part really is up to me.

Along with that goes the idea of honesty. How often would people's feelings get hurt if we honestly expected people to be honest with us. When we ask our husbands, "Does this dress make me look fat?" if we expected them to answer honestly, would we get our feelings hurt if we knew they were just really being honest, and they didn't want us to walk around looking fat to other people? No. We wouldn't.

This honesty idea does not mean tactless, but it does mean honest. I really need to work to be honest with people. Most of the time, it also means that I need to speak up if something around me is not right. If someone else is getting teased or belittled, it IS my job to say something about it. If those people get their feelings hurt by me saying something truly honest with no intent to hurt someone, that really is up to them.

These realizations have changed my life. The only person for whom I am truly responsible is myself. However, I am responsible for myself. No one else is responsible for me, and that changes how I act and feel every day. If someone says something hurtful, I have to remember that the words are coming from them, it's not really my fault. I need to take responsibility for any wrong action I have enacted, but their feelings are their own. Rob really is in charge of his own feelings. When he or I interact now, I remember that he's in charge of what he eats and how he feels about himself. Whether or not I work say nice things to him and help him is my responsibility, but whether or not he listens to me is his. Now, I really work not to get angry with him.

I don't know if any of these thoughts made sense to anyone else, but these were thoughts that really did change my whole way of thinking and looking at life. My self-esteem really does come from inside. If I base it on anyone else, it's false. I need to base my self-esteem on what truly helps me be happy and I get to choose even that.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

More about way too crazy

I really need to take a driving course online. I got my first speeding ticket on the way to an OB appointment somewhere in the first part of July. I already paid the ticket online, but if I take a driving course, then I don't have to have any points assessed on my record. I'm going to do it. I need to do it sometime this week, maybe today.

However, on top of all of that, I got my first order on Ellie Bellie Baby!!!! YAY YAY YAY!!! However, I have a killer quilt top (which I will post on here for everyone's viewing pleasure) to make as rapidly as possible. Also, I have five seminary lessons to teach this week, and I still have children to chase.

Jackie is out of town for a few days with Grandmama and Papa going up to see her cousins. She was WAY excited, and they left yesterday bright and early. I'm interested to see how that goes. I'm so happy for her. She loves her cousins. But with one thing and another, I hope that I get around to posting because this will be an interesting week. I'm hoping to post instructions on this quilt as I make it. It is not to be a bed cap because the customer wanted just a quilt. But it's going to be awesome.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Way too crazy for my own good

This last week, I spent the whole week in Virginia taking two of the girls from our branch to EFY, for my readers who aren't familiar with my church, it's a youth camp called Especially For Youth. The girls loved it. While they were at their camp, I went to Williamsburg with one of the girls' moms. I got to go help her drive up there and back, and we had a blast. I'm sorry, but I didn't really have time to post. Honestly, I'm just exhausted by the end of every day, so all I've had energy to do at night is some online seminary training or preparing my lessons. Seminary starts Friday! CRAZY! I'm in the process of thinking of an answer to Julie's Hump Day, and I may post one tomorrow, but at this point in time, there are no promises about my blog. I truly love blogging, but I just don't know that I can stay awake at the computer long enough to post it.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Memories

My friend Katie has this on her blog, and I thought it looked fun, so I'm playing along.

So here's how it works...
1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you know me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you. If you don't want to play on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, I'll leave my memory of you in my comments.

So there you have it! Post away! Oh,and if you don't "know" me well enough to have a memory, feel free to use anything you've read here. A favorite post you've read, etc. that way everyone can play!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Another tribute to McKenna and others

This post is coming a day late, and it may be a dollar short, but I really had to decide whether or not to write something on this topic. After having some extra special experiences because of my niece, McKenna, I wasn't sure whether or not to write this post.

Julie's Hump Day Hmm topic yesterday was: share your thoughts about a case of some medical or other situation that deviated from the "norm." What do you think about the drive to fix? Do all conditions and situations need fixing? Or do we societally need to consider our need to control, master and manage, and instead spend some time, sometimes, learning how to deal? Or...are those mutually exclusive?

I think that there are times when we have medical conditions that, if fixed, would greatly improve the quality of life for the person with the condition. My dad had a triple bypass for his heart, and right now, he's in the hospital having chemo treatment number three because of lymphoma. It can be fixed, and he is old enough to make the choice for himself.

However, I think that the world needs people like McKenna, too. Her spirit was so pure. McKenna was able to teach me things, without ever speaking to me, that I could not have learned from a person who walks and talks and makes mistakes. McKenna taught me the true meaning of love. Sometimes we think of love in terms of what we can do for other people or what they can do for us. "If you love me, you'll" is a phrase commonly heard in society. And the sad thing is that people believe it. In reality, love is a feeling we feel for others, and so we do things that we think will make them happy because, in loving, we want other people to be happy. Whenever I walked into my sister's house, I could automatically feel McKenna's love. If I was sad or heartsick about something, I just needed to go sit by McKenna and all of a sudden I KNEW I was loved and calm just filled me from the inside out. Those talents, I believe, were given to McKenna in place of other talents that other people have. It might have been beautiful if we could have fixed her, but in reality, we would have given up so much more, and since she couldn't choose herself, we can't know what she would have given up, maybe grudgingly, to be able to do things that most other children can do.

I love McKenna, and I'm so glad that she's happy now. And now that she's rid of her earthly body, she still has all of the beautiful talents that she gained here, but her spirit is now free to run, jump and dance. She now gets the best of both worlds.

In the end, a boy with autism, or a girl like McKenna both have the talents they have, and they are who they are partly because of the other problems they have. Some of us have problems that don't show so well on the outside, but those problems make us who we are too. Would we give up the knowledge we gain through experience just to get rid of the problems? I wouldn't.