Tuesday, October 21, 2014

happy birthday last year!

So. So. Tired.

I survived the last two weeks - the WonderGirl 8th birthday hoopla that included her baptism, then my birthday hoopla that included traveling to Atlanta to play with my band.  Early mornings, late nights, and the confirmation that I DO feel a heckuvalot older this year.  Possibly due to the late nights/early mornings thing.

I just looked back at my 14 years of blogging (YEAH.  DUDE.) and since the second year of my bloggeting, I've done a year recap of my previous year for my birthday.  So since 2001 - and last year, I forgot, apparently. How can I remember what happened to 33 year old me, when I had Thing 3 and my brains fell out during delivery.

But ah!  I'm a blogger!  There's a history of my doings everywheres!  In fact tonight at church I'm speaking on journaling, since I keep at least 5.  Seriously.   No wait - 6.  So I looked back and pieced together what happened 2 years ago, and before I pontificate on year 34, here's a brief look at 33:

 Went to Portland for the bestest weddingest of the amazing Pascal and his super awesome woman.

 Took pictures like this.  Cuz I was still knee-deep n my 365 self-portrait project.
 Taught this one violin.  And piano.  The Dude too, but he won't pose for 700 pictures or until I get one I like (usually takes about 700)
 Celebrated 8 years of marriage. AAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaa.

 Finished my 365 project with only minimal whiplash.

 Survived a wicked winter.

 Kept being pregnant.

 Gave birth to this slice of heaven on earth.

 Went to church 6 days later to see the husband be set apart as a bishop.

 Did the 3 kids thing...
Dani came to visit!  So we did this!

Played a Scottish festival with The BlarneyGirls.

Had an AMAZING summer.  The baby was too small to get into anything, the Dude had just given up naps and was an actual KID (not toddler/baby) so we got to go on adventures and just be blasted happy lotsa the time.

 Went to Chi-town to see one of my favorite bands, the Polyphonic Spree, which happened to also have 2 of my awesome college buddies in it!

Did I mention how awesome our summer was?  Cuz it was.

And that actually kind of covers it.  Not terribly thrilling, but I can use a year of downtime here and there.  Stay tuned for 34...

Saturday, October 4, 2014

why hello, october

A few things:

This weekend  is my favoritest weekend because it is GENERAL CONFERENCE and there ire spiritual and physical goodies and jammies everywhere.

It's officially one week until WonderGirl turns 8, gets baptized and I host a mazillion people at my house.  Or 10, whatever.HO.LY.SNAP.

I got to go to the Chicago Temple a week or two ago.  Temple going is NOT an easy thing out here in the tundra, so it was awesomesauce.

I cleaned the kitchen.  Just thought you should know.

Thing 3 walked up to me this morning holding an Easter egg and handed it to me with a "Pease?" and when I opened it up for him, he said "Tank oo!"  That was so flipping cute that it made up for the time last week when I was reading a book to the Dude and out of nowhere Thing 3 hit me REALLY STINKING HARD in the head with a drumstick.  I didn't see it coming, either, so it was a nice surprise.  Not.

With medication and the blessing of my mom coming out a few weeks, I feel slightly more myself.  I don't know if you noticed that I was about to go completely insane, but I was.  If you didn't, booya to my acting skillz.  If you did, I should probably stop opening conversations with "Can you remember the last time you showered?  Cuz I can't!!"

One of the awesome talks today was by a woman who talked about a group of teen girls who asked her about what she wished she'd known when she was a young woman.  Her answer was that she wished she'd understood the sacrament better.  And then proceeded to give a seriously fabulous talk about that.  I wondered what I wish I'd known... and one thought that popped into my head was to have had a better perspective of what matters and what doesn't.  Thankfully I managed to get out of that age without too many bruises, but I think I would have liked to have the sense to fret less about a few things.

Pinterest is my spirit animal.  I don't know what that means, either, but I know that I MEAN IT.

Now, to go to sleep and wake up to snuggling/breaking up fights with the wee ones, the husband cooking up a storm, and a spiritual feast to boot!!!  I love the first weekend of October so hard.

Friday, September 19, 2014

you oughta be in pictures

In addition to my request in my last post, I figured I should also post an actual update/posty thing.  So I'll settle with some random pics form my 365 project lately:

 This girl is turning 8 in less than a month.  !!!!!!!!!!!!!  She is thrilled to get to be baptized on her exact birthday, and the husband's family has this gorgeous baptism dress they've passed down for 2 generations now.  How cool is that??

This kid.  He has been so lucky in early intervention programs and teachers who genuinely love him - and it makes me so happy to see how far he has come that I'm only slightly exasperated by the fact that this was the best back-to-school picture I could get out of him.  He cracks me up.

We live next to a corn field and I got it into my head that we should go take a fall-ish picture in front of it.  This was also the best shot we could get out of us.

You know, my life ain't half bad.

baby helps

So our dear Jane has a human in her abdomen that will be exiting shortly!

Yeah, I wanted to make that sentence as awkward as humanly possible.  Good for me!  Anywho, I'm trying to get for her all the very most helpful things I ever had as a mom and I wondered if y'all would weigh in?  I feel like I was punched in the face by motherhood and my memories are spotty.  There are tons of books and trinkets that I love, but the number one was this:

Sleep sacks.  Oh MAN, Thing 3 is my best sleeper and I swear it's gotta be because I discovered these.  Then there are snack traps, pacifier clips, extra socks (ALWAYS EXTRA SOCKS.), etc, but what am I missing?  What was your big help?

Monday, August 25, 2014


I was drowning last week.  I've been drowning for a while, actually.  It's incredibly hard to articulate, especially being surrounded by so much modern convenience, plenty and loving family.  So I haven't, just tried to muddle forward.  It's like walking through oatmeal, and I can't explain what I'm trying to do.

But mommies know.  So I call my mom.  Or she calls me.  And last Tuesday she listened while I tried to talk.  Gave encouragement the way a mom knows how to do.  And then called me back an hour later and told me she'd booked a flight for THAT NIGHT and would be staying with me for the rest of the week.


I can't explain how close I came to really losing it, and how she helped.  But I will say my head feels above the water today. I feel like I can make it to tomorrow, which is more hope than I've had in a while.  So there's that.

When mom was here, she told me about a painting that she'd seen in the Louvre that had stuck with her.  She described in such a way that I had to look it up and see what she was talking about.

It was Scene from a Deluge by Anne Louis Girodet-Trioson and it WILL give you nightmares. So read on at your own risk.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Friday, July 25, 2014

at the midnight hour... more more.

Friday night, kids are in bed, jammies on, when the husband gets one of those calls. And the poor guy has to suit back up and go for the umpteenth time this week and help the masses.   So I text Jane. She's married to my brother who was also called as a bishop last year, and  she's my go-to when it all gets a bit much. 


And in the meantime, I'll blog. A few of the promised before and after pics of the TEN FREAKING YEARS. 

At the Halloween orchestra concert I conducted. 

The night we got all officially engaged. 

Engagement shots. 

Just before Brasil got totally humiliated at the World Cup a coupla weeks ago. 

At an 80s party this February... I think. 

Last week. 

I used to get my hairs did. And bought clothing that looked good on me.  Now, I unashamedly care not for beans. And my main motivation in the clothing I buy is how much of this will keep me covered while I'm dragging one child through the store while another is on my hip, yanking at the neckline, chasing the third who is two aisles ahead of me, screaming for cupcakes and the potty. 

Like I said, it's a good life. But completely unplanned. 24 year old me would be totally weirded out. 


SO.  Yesterday afternoon I was feeding Thing 3 and waiting for the husband to come home from work when a nice teenage girl showed up.  It's cool, I knew her.  She just stood there at the door smiling at me and I was like... "soooo..... what can I do for you?" and she was like "Your husband is surprising you.  I'm watching the kids tonight."  

A night out??  I don't have to set up the sitter??  Niiiiice.  And then, in walks the husband with a dozen roses and chocolate.  It has not been the greatest week so I figured it was a "Hey, let's do something nice for you so you stop stomping around the house like an annoyed T-Rex" surprise, but it was actually a "Hey, we met 10 years ago today!" surprise.


TEN.  FREAKING.  YEARS.  I mean, I know the big wedding one is coming in January but that's still soooo far away.  Like 5 months.  Because yes, I got married that flipping fast.  But... dang.

And instead of being all goopy and dreamy about 10 years together, my mind is reeling from the fact that I am now 10 years older than when I was single.  DUDE.  What would 10-years-ago say about where I am today?  I mean, if I think about it, Jared seems about spot on.  He's got a fancy corporate jorb and he's a bishop and wears button-up shirts to work and Dropkick Murphys tee shirts when he's not at church.  That sounds about right.  But me??  I did NOT picture any of this.  I'm not saying I'm hating it, but I also don't feel like I made a conscious effort to become this half-crazed mother of three.  I feel like it just kinda happened.  I got married.  Then I had a kid.  Then... then... then... this happened. This is freaking me out. 

As I was panicking on the couch today, I decided to take a selfie of me to compare to whatever picture I could find of me 10 years ago.  As I was snapping it, it realized behind me was a closet with crap spilling out of it and a photobomb by the Dude, who has been belting out the lyrics to Schoolhouse Rock's Electricity and TROGDOR THE BURNINATOR all day.

Yeah.  That sounds about right.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

the one where we get to stare at my face

I should probably know how this happened and details and all that, but I have no clue - there's a YouTube channel up of a gazzillion vids from our live shows in GA!

Our singer is AFREAKINGMAZING and you should totally check out all the videos where she sings and melts me into a puddle on the floor with her gorgeousness, but since this is my blog, I wanted to share this juicy tidbit - that I WROTE! (and then played.  I'm the one with the fiddle - you know, the one an entire foot taller than the rest of the band)

I know what you're thinking.  Why on earth did the sound guys have a UHaul parked behind the stage for the entire weekend, thus turning every pic and video into a UHaul commercial?  Me too.


inspired by my newsfeed this morning

My grandfather had a poem written up somewhere, and I memorized it.  Probably incorrectly, but this was the jist that my brain held onto:

I have often thought that I could be better
if I was a bold and brisk go-getter,
instead of a slinking placid sheep
with an unscrupulous urge to oversleep.
But the world needs fellows like me, I'll bet
else who would the go-getters go and get?

It's like someone wrote it for me, right?  Anyway, it fits with my daily WHAT THE HUH?? today.

Who are the people who feel the need to go up to a waiter/ manager and complain that someone else is breastfeeding?  I mean, who ARE they?  And as you should all be aware, I am NOT a breastfeeding advocate.  It was one of the worst things I've ever survived (and no, it wasn't because it hurt - it was that fun disorder it gives me) and when lactivists come my way, I run the opposite direction.  When I hear all the data about how I'm doing horrible things to my kids by giving them formula, I show them my kid's test scores from school and their clean bills of health.  Breastfeeding is great, but the alternative isn't the demon it is made out to be.

(that's the harshest I'll ever rant about it.  if you can call that a rant.)

But if they want to do it, it's not a big deal.  If I see someone do it, I just think about how hard it is to mother no matter what our choices.  Even if they aren't doing the best job of covering up, I just look a different way.  Partly because when I did it, it was before all those awesome hooter-hiders came out and covering a nursing baby who is clawing at the blanket you are trying to keep that cover on WHILE fighting a mad suicidal monster inside of you is AWFUL.  More power to anyone who can manage to do it.

But really, who has the energy to go up to someone and complain about it and insist they stop? Who are these people?  I mean it - I'm not demonizing the people who get offended either.  We are all children of our Father in Heaven and I try not to demonize any of us because we all have our own invisible baggage we are carrying.  But with all that internal juggling, who has the time to go pointing fingers at anyone else?  Maybe they could teach me something about time-management.  Maybe if I organized my schedule better, I'd have more time to set aside for judging others.

And that goes for people who have the time/energy to complain to flight attendants/employees about other people.  I have limited time on this earth.  I'm not going to spend it demanding other people not go about annoying me.  (heaven knows there are enough things people could complain about ME - I'm trying to keep my glass house in one piece).

But then I think of that poem - and there ARE times when someone should stand up about things.  Things that are dangerous, hateful, whatever.  The world has been made a better place by people better than me who don't make a habit of minding their own beeswax.  It has its place, it really does.  The world needs whistle-blowers, abolitionists, suffragettes, etc.

So I guess what I'm saying is I'm glad there are people out there who aren't like me.

But take it down a notch, people.  There are worse things than someone breastfeeding in a Starbux.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

r u three?

Summer officially started Monday.  2 weeks ago school was out and we left immediately for the south and my yearly gig with the BlarneyGirls at the Blairsville Scottish Festival.  A marvelous time was had by all and then we headed home just to have the band meet me up here and play two shows in Wisconsin.

This is terribly boring, but it explains while Monday morning, the house was suddenly empty of all the guests and it was just the kids and I, staring blankly at each other.  The day did not begin well.  I know many moms who wail about the summer and how they can't stand the craziness of the kids and how they can't wait to send them back to school and I always thought they were just grumpy pants people.

Until Monday.

At one point I was marching through the house hollering that summer was cancelled.  I won't give specifics, but things were not going well.

The cruddy thing is, last summer was AMAZING.  I had two kids old enough to have some serious fun with and the baby was still very much a baby who was content with sitting in his carseat on excursions.  I was so happy all the time I couldn't stand it - you may remember my infrequent LIFE IS SO GRAND posts.

But now I have 2 kids who are still open to fun, and one kid whose life's ambition is to run into traffic.  And to burst the eardrums of EVERYONE EVERYWHERE.  I love this 1 year old but if we both make it to September I'm going to ... I can't think of it yet, but I'm going to do something drastic and wonderful for myself.  It's a big IF.

Did I pop onto Blogger just to moan and groan to y'all?  No.  Well okay, a little.  But I'm also on here because I CAN.  See, a few years ago my laptop died and I decided I didn't want a replacement because I didn't want that big of a distraction around.  I wanted to be in the moment with the kids, you know?  Besides, if I need something I have my handy dandy iPhone.  Except the iPhone is also really slow and typing is a pain and I can't ever really comment on anything.  Anywhere.  We have a big awesome computer (a few actually) but the one with all the awesomeness is the big one in the living room that also acts as our TV and is shared with the whole family, so getting access is not simple.  Which has been fine - a little isolating, but fine.

Until Monday morning when I was convinced we were all going to kill each other and the thought came into my head that I needed a diversion.  HARDCORE.  A diversion that allows me to read blogs and comment and get out of the madness for a few minutes.  TO ACTUALLY BLOG AGAIN.  So I've convinced the husband's tablet thingy to accept me and that's how right now I'm am connecting with you and ignoring the fact that Thing 3 smells like a barn and is trying to dissect the vacuum.

So hello!  Have a nice day!  I exist!  I look like a crazy person!  I'm not going to come up with a witty finish because the Dude is trying to convince me that he should have cotton candy for lunch tomorrow and I'm so tired I'm actually considering it!  Bye!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

yo wazzup pinterest

Welcome to another edition of Stuff I Found on Pinterest That Ended Up Being Awesomesauce!  This time I've even added a coupla phone pics of the end product to show what they look like in the real world.  Or at least in the Reva barely-passable world.  But they still worked, so booya!

I love cilantro but I never end up using all of it.  I hate HATE throwing away wilted cilantro.  It's seriously depressing.  So I went searching for solutions and found a nice recipe for a cilantro-lime pesto with directions to freeze it for later.  I froze it in an ice cube tray (I only had star shaped) and defrosted a few the next time we had fish tacos and it was super yummy.  Plus it made me feel 14 kinds of cool so that's nice.

We made a sugar scrub in my MOPS group and it was the simplest ingredient list ever - so I had to make my own when it was all gone.  2 ingredients - lavender scented baby oil and sugar.  It was super exfoliating and my legs appreciated the whole 28 seconds it took to mix it all up.

I've mentioned before that I make my own laundry detergent, but I was never comfortable making dishwashing detergent with Borax.  I found a recipe without it AND directions for making them into individual tabs.  So far it's worked out great, it took less than 5 minutes to make them and again, I get the added bonus of feeling cool about myself.

Moms love pictures of their kids and grandkids.  With my mom breaking her leg this winter, I thought that she'd like some wearable pictures for Mother's Day while she laid on the couch.  I found lots of tutorials that involved clear stones and Mod Podge and a lot of other things I could totally see myself screwing up, but then I found this tutorial that used Epiphany Crafts adhesive bubbles with charms to match.  I went to Walmart to get the supplies to make the bracelet and ordered the Epiphany stuff on Amazon - with the usual result of me being overly proud of myself.

A few other things of awesome note:

Ken Jennings Junior Genius guide books are super great and WonderGirl approved.  We're digging the geography one lately.

Three great FHE lessons we've used were this one for Lehi's Dreamthis one for the Plan of Salvation and this one on testimonies.

Lastly, I used this diy body wrap a little while after having Thing 3 and it helped my body feel a little more like myself.  I didn't notice losing inches off my waist (maybe a centimeter or two, just water weight), but it tightened up my skin and that felt heavenly, post-baby.