Tuesday, August 31, 2010

comments make me dance

And then Cathie said exactly what I needed to hear:



Maybe we’re all average. Maybe life is mostly just average. As President Hinckley quoted, “Most children grow up to be just people. Most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration. Most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. …Life is like an old-time rail journey—delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride.”

Or to quote my favorite new show of last season, “You’re a normal person. There’s nothing very special about you at all. You’re going to be great at a few things, but really crappy at many more. And that takes a lot of the pressure off! So you can live a full, happy life.”




I challenged WonderGirl to tidy her room, and decided to take my own advice and tackle the tangled mess that my jewelry has become. It isn’t a urgent need as I can’t wear any currently, what with the claws of destruction that are the Dude’s hands.  It was like reconnecting with old friends.  I’m not a jewelry-for-jewelry’s sake kind of gal, most of what I own has sentimental value.  I cringe when I get invited to those overpriced jewelry parties - I’d much rather spend money on a necklace from some exotic locale I’ve visited than a catalog.  There’s the necklace I wore on my wedding day that was a gift from a friend years previous, the bridesmaid necklace from Dani’s wedding - and Megan’s.  The one I bought from a Peruvian on the side of the road in Brasil, the necklace I bought at the last Scottish festival I played as a member of the BC, the bright yellow necklace my mother bought me at the Cherry Creek Arts Festival to bring me light when she wasn’t around… how long until the Dude stops clawing at anything shiny he sees?

Monday, August 30, 2010

And then, I thinks to myself - can an average person produce a child that does THIS?? (it’s the Yellow Submarine one… I could use a laugh today, I’m sure you could too:)





above average

So the church has this new thing going - “I’m a Mormon.”  There are videos and profiles of members all over the world, which I think is cool.  There are so many misconceptions about our religion and theology, why not go straight to the members and see if we’re all cult-crazy zombies?


Because some of us aren’t.  I think.  


Seriously, if I had a dollar for every time someone found out I was a Mormon and was shocked and then said - “but you don’t act like a Mormon -” I’d have piles and piles of dollars.  Because they have this preconceived notion that I should be … well, I don’t know who, really.


So I thought - how nifty!  I’ll put up a profile and people can see how cool I am while doing the Mormon gig!


Except, if I try to describe myself on paper, I don’t have anything really interesting to say about who I am.  I’m completely average.  I’m a stay at home mom in Wisconsin to two kids… I used to play violin a lot… there are newscasters and doctors and actual musicians on there.  I’m oatmeal.


Ug, so there I am, feeling all boring and bland, and then I made the mistake of watching part of my master’s recital video, which further illustrated the average diagnosis - I never was a GREAT violinist, but I was decent.  Now I’m not being hard on myself here.  I have a bachelors and a masters in violin performance so I have the right credentials to go around critiquing talent.  Which I do allll the time in the car.  Last Saturday the local NPR station played the worst version I have ever heard of Rhapsody in Blue and I started screaming at my dashboard.  How could someone butcher poor Gershwin so?!?!?!  I have half a mind to march to the station and punch the program manager in the eyebrow.


Regardless, I have to come to terms with this average thing.  Life for an average person isn’t that bad, right?  No one is asking us to cure any diseases or run any countries - heck, no one even asks me to cook dinner.  We’re jsut supposed to live our little lives and make the economy hum.  I have a fine, modest and normal life in a small town in America, in a peaceful home where I can live in comfort - many in this world are not so lucky.


Still… I wish I had something up my sleeve.  Something new and exciting the world has never seen.  Something that wasn’t there before… okay sure, there’s that noble job I’m doing of raising two awesome humans, but that’s hardly revolutionary.


Maybe I’ll just settle for making average look a little less average.



Just showed this to the husband.  ”I don’t get it - who is this about?  Some girl?” he said.  


“No, white tigers, like in the picture,” I said.  ”It’s just disgusting how they over-breed to get them.”


“…Are you sure this isn’t about Paris Hilton?”


(image via beautifulshadows)




It’s True  (via ooliquidnightoo)


Friday, August 27, 2010

“While my baby is taking her nap, I try to imagine her dream and capture it.” Holy SNAP this is adorable (thanks kimbo!!). You can see more images on Mila’s Daydreams.





brain mumblings

Cannot SLEEP.  Today was insanely productive and also unproductive and my brain refuses to turn off.  It is in fact, running through the first page of Fritz Kreisler’s Praeludium and Allegro over and over and arguing about fingerings.  I wish I was kidding.  stupid brain, just stay in third position and extend.  noooo, you can’t really sell the vibrato if you do the harmonic! ug.  Also, this is what else is in my head:


Have I ever mentioned that my day can be made or broken based solely on the chance that I can sucessfully get WonderGirl to eat something healthy?


I have a lot of bad days.


This morning, I made applesauce muffins from scratch.  I let WG help.  I thought they were kind of gross, but she ate TWO.  THERE WAS BRAN IN THERE.


Then, drunk on power, I made a smoothie with bananas, berries and milk and put flax seed in it. SHE TOOK FOUR SIPS.  (and then I froze them and she ate a smoothie popsicle as dessert after dinner.  FLAX SEED.  DUDE.)


Now completely hammered on awesome parenting, I talked a teenager from church into coming and playing with my kids all day long so I could clean something.  Anything.  Just one room.


It took me over 5 hours to clean the kitchen.  REALLY.  REALLY CLEAN.


It looks like someone else’s kitchen.  I scrubbed places I didn’t even know existed.  Do people with clean houses actually take toothbrushes to every teeny tiny vent and corner and edge to make them look that clean???  I even scrubbed the KitchenAid.  Is that normal????  It’s sparkling.


I couldn’t stop.  I have never, EVER in my life been that driven to clean.  I’d swear it was nesting except I am so most definitely not pregnant.


I couldn’t have done it if someone else hadn’t been there tending the booboos and playing with the kids.  The second I focus on anything other than them, the Dude will faceplant somewhere and WonderGirl will nearly decapitate herself while running up the stairs.  (she actually did that today.)


This is why I can’t play violin.  Or do anything else other than mother.  I cannot think about anything else when I play, and when I don’t have my mind trained on the wee ones, they nearly kill themselves.  I have two of the klutziest children, I swear.  


It’s probably because I cannot multitask.  I think I could be a good housewife (minus the cooking) if I had no children, or job to occupy any other portion of my brain.  As it is, I stretch out my brain to include wife, mother, housewife (violin isn’t included any more - I rarely have the chance of solitude to even get it out of the case), and I’m pretty meh at all three.  When I am an awesome mom, my house is a wreck.  When I’m a good wife, my kids feel left out.  When I am a good housewife, I have to pay someone to take the mom spot because I simply can’t do both.


But oh… today… the kids were happy (though I could tell the Dude knew I wasn’t there mentally for him, he got very clingy tonight), the sitter insisted on sending the hubs and I out on a date for dinner in his “new” 30 year old jeep he bought sight unseen on eBay (it’s actually kind of awesome) and during their baths tonight I scrubbed and cleaned two bathrooms.


Then, I pulled out my Satin Hands set that my mom got for me back when I was in grad school, battling tendonitis.  I scrubbed and rubbed my raw fingers with the gooey, luxurious cremes and felt my mother giving me a big hug and an “I’m so proud of you.”  


Ug, but now, my brain will not stop.  Why??  Heck, I even snuck carrots into WG’s lunch!  I can’t stop scheming how to get someone to come play at my house all day and distract my children so I could clean another room.  Maybe even two.  Oh, what a castle we could live in if I wasn’t always concerned about loving and nurturing my offspring.


It’s totally worth it to live in a pigsty, though.  I really missed them today.  But, I do have a clean kitchen.  That’s so weird.

Thursday, August 26, 2010



throwback thursday


Again, a day late.  I was still in Iowa half the day, so there’s my obligatory excuse.  This entry is only from October 1st, 2008, but given how huge WonderGirl is, it’s a Golden Oldie.  The caption reads - “That’s my girl.”  And whenever I see her in my head, this image is at the front.  Sassy, looking forward, and about to throw sand at no one in particular, just to see what kind of splash it will make.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010



GPOYW -Food Pyramid Model edition. I was so upset about the lack of playmates in Wisconsin that I jumped in the car yesterday, got really lost and ended up in Iowa City. Cousins, Target and the Children’s Museum are soul soothing :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

ask and ye shall get

Wow, when you ask questions you ask QUESTIONS.  Oh well, let the hilarity ensue…


Tia asks: Do you ever plan on moving back to Atl or do you think it is just out of the question?


I LOVE ATL and the south, and yes, I would totally move back there.  I don’t know if it’s in the cards, but it all depends on anyone in the HotLanta offering the employable one in our marriage piles of money to come work for them and boss everyone around (that’s his specialty).  Although WonderGirl got a allergy test yesterday and it turns out she is NOT allergic to strawberries, but she IS allergic to cockroaches.  So maybe the south is out after all.  ;)


Kelly asks: Are you planning on having any more kids? If so, when?


I’d consider having one more if there was some kind of medical procedure where my uterus was able to keep the pregnancy a secret from my breasts.  Honestly, after the Dude who is the most adorable little boy that has ever existed, I could be tempted.  But I don’t know if I can go through d-mer again.  And knowing what it is is AWESOME, but that doesn’t stop the process I have to survive while trying to care for a newborn.  So that’s a huge No CLUE for ya.  (although it has occurred to me that when I get pregnant, we have to move… so if I get REALLY sick of Wisconsin… I may be tempted;)


mbear asks: How do young mothers today raise moral, virtuous children? A Catholic friend of mine is considering a “promise contract” between she and her 6th grade daughter. What is your advice?


I giggled when I read that, because the thought occurred to me that asking the mother of a toddler how to raise a virtuous child is like asking a woman who has never given birth before what her labor plan is.  You can make lists and have demands, but in the end, it’s completely out of your control.  My plan is actually this:  love.  I don’t really know what I’m doing. I mess up a lot.  But if I love them all day long, be the best example I can be, crawl into bed with them to hold them and tell them how important they are… maybe they will mirror my actions.  A child learns to speak the English language by mirroring their parents, so if the language of my life is virtuous and good, there’s a good chance they will mirror that too.  It’s my only idea really, so I’m banking on it.  I just love the crap out of them all the time.  Case in point:  I made a lot of mistakes growing up, but no matter what, the love and example of my parents kept me on the right path.  Their example still is what helps me aim in the right direction.  I was bemoaning how I’ll never be able to accomplish anything near what my parents had, and a few hours later I received this message in my inbox from my mom:



Dear Reva,
I reflected on what you said and I have to admit that I accomplished 
only a fraction of what my own mother did...from scratch.
The percentage of growth and accomplishment that my mom had to show by 
the end of her life BLOWS MY MIND.
My own percentage of growth is wee in comparison.

I think you think too much of me and what all I/we did in those years we 
were together.
And for sure....I didn't do all of what you think I did in the first 5 
years of your life!
Lighten up, sweetie. Each day has its own ups & downs. Hopefully more ups.
Keep your eye on the prize.
You have a tremendous helpmate.
You are hot.
You have incredible children.
You know the Gospel and live/show it fully.
You have mighty blessings from heaven, e.g. health, lovely home, 
gorgeous bod, yummy food, cool hair, nice cars, etc. :)
You write a cool, engaging blog that has moocho friends.
You are hot.
You are talented and your talents are well-trained.
Your make modest look chic.
You are educated.
You have an intelligent husband who engages you in conversation.
You make a violin sing
You are hot.
You are virtuous and of good report.
Your husband and children love and adore you.
You make wicked fondue.
You play the guitar and sing and can chew gum at the same time. woohoo
AND you are hot.
I am just glad that somehow I managed to be some kind of example you 
deem worthy of regarding and worth following.
You've got plenty of time to be an even better example for your own 
children. And your daughter will sing your praises one day.
Make each day count and keep your eyes on the prize.
Let each season of your life ripen in its own unique goodness.
Keep listening to the Spirit and go where the Lord leads you.
I am honored to be your mother.
I love and admire you.
Mama



If I can give my own children anything near the love and devotion my parents gave me… maybe there is a chance I won’t fail.  That’s my plan for now, anyway.  :)

Monday, August 23, 2010



Duh Duuuh Duh!  duh duuuuh duh  Duh Duuuuh Duh!  duh duuuuh duh


dum dillie um dillie um dillie um dillie um dum dum dum.  Repeat.



via For reference sake:in-the-margins

*crack*

I thought post partum depression was hard.  I thought moving pregnant… twice… was hard.  I thought the eating strikes, the nursing debacle, the tantrums, travelling with toddlers and the stomach flu was hard.


Nothing, nothing hurts like seeing my little girl ostracized by other kids.  When we moved here, we went to a playgroup and my sunshine of a girl ran up to some girls her age and brightly announced she was there to play.  They yelled “No!” and ran away.  I stood there in horror, watching her stand there in horror.  She’d never been rejected before - I’d never seen her rejected before - and it felt like I’d been punched in the gut.  She looked at me so sad and confused and cried “No one wants to be my friend!”  I didn’t know what to do.  I held her while she cried and I fought my own tears back.


It hasn’t gotten easier over the last year.  Lately she asks me about all her friends we left in Georgia and begs me to take her to the Madison Airport so we can go see them.  She’s lonely.  I feel like a failure. I miss her friends.  There are so many unfriendly kids.  I work so hard to teach her to be loving and kind and understanding, and she is.  She goes up to kids on the playground and assumes they are the same, and when they aren’t and won’t play with her… I cry with her.  I yelled at a girl who would not STOP treating her like dirt, in my own home.  


What does a mom do???  Do I teach her to start acting like she’s a jerk 17 year old too???  ouch.  ouch!!  It really, really hurts.


A while back, my BFF Sabrina and I were reminiscing about our wacky, innocent HS hijinx and she told me that she prayed her daughter could have a friendship like ours as she goes through those hard adolescent years, and I’m starting to understand what she meant.  I love her.  I adore her.  I hold her every day and tell her that she is amazing, a daughter of God, wonderful, and brilliant.  My mother did the same thing (she still does, actually).  I know it’s all I can do.  I really, really hope she can have a friend who believes in her and treats her well too… we all need all we can get, really. 


Maybe I should start her blogging early… ;)

i have a compulsion to blog

… but can’t think of anything to say.  Ask me any question, and I promise I’ll make the answer all interesting.  Far more than my actual life ;)



Good luck with the new school year, scholars :)

Saturday, August 21, 2010



ohmyheckmormons:



HAPPY BIRTHDAY THOMAS S. MONSON!


  • born August 21, 1927

Kate Rusby : Sweet Bride (this is long and quite possibly, incredibly boring. So if you are in a hurry, the jist is I miss creating music. This song is absolutely lovely and one my trio does a nice version of, despite my singing backup vocals ;) It has been in my head for a week, taunting me, saying “You wish you could write something like this… but alas, it’s not in your season..” It’s making me feel.. creatively/musically constipated.) I realize that my last bazillion posts or so are completely about my children or motherhood. I really do still exist somewhere inside of all this, and I’m going to try to post about that small sliver in there. I may have to squint though… When I joined the BC, my first celtic band, it was a huge and surreal experience. They were already established, recorded, and had a huge presence on the music scene in the southeast. There were tons of gigs - pubs, concerts, festivals, we played them all and it was a dizzying, fantastic ride. Then I migrated south o’ the border and had to quit. Funny, when I would cry about leaving the US to give birth, the thing I was the most upset about was leaving the band. When I came back they still had their new fiddler, so the guitarist and I started a trio with his daughter, just side things. Parties, small pubs, etc. It was terrifying because now there weren’t four other people to cover me up - I had to play whole sets without the singer and there was nowhere to hide, plus I was singing backup now. I had to find (the hard part) and learn a huge new repertoire, which was daunting but ultimately really exciting and rewarding. I was creating. It felt so, so good. It reminded me of my college days where I took my guitar everywhere I went, writing song after song and playing open mic every week at the Brickhaus. Except the music I played with the trio was less angry and actually worth listening to (though I adore every friend that would come with me, cheer and support - I was a lucky girl for sure!). A bit later, I rejoined the BC again, but there weren’t as many gigs. And there was drama here and there, and schedules made it impossible to get together to write new material and record. And there just weren’t that many gigs any more - pubs were closing, concerts were farther in between. When I did play with the trio, it was always almost a cathartic experience - there was no drama, it was me and the guitar and voice, creating, improvising, having a ball making music. It was absolutely wonderful. I had to leave it all behind again when we moved last year, but I got to go back and play a festival with the trio this summer. They’d learned a lot of new material with the fiddler who had replaced me so it was tough work (and I’m rusty), but standing up there on stage, dancing around the melodies, leading the guitarist and knowing he could follow ANYthing I threw at him (he’s SO unbelievably good - the best I have and will ever work with. DANG.) was such a uplifting, amazing experience. I asked him why the BC weren’t playing much and his reply was that NOone was playing much. Was it the economy? I figured - but no, he said the tide had just shifted. A few years ago, when Riverdance, Braveheart, and Lord of the Rings were all coming out, celtic music became very much in demand, so bands started popping up. But it’s just not the “in” thing right now, so bands are breaking up and having to compete each other for gigs. It made sense to me - I’d felt the slow drying up processes. So now I’m thinking - what’s the “in” thing now? Indian? Alaskan? Justin Bieber? Should I try to jump on another bandwagon? I miss being creative. I miss the feeling of freedom and terror that comes with improvising and composing, not just regurgitating someone else’s sound. People often ask me why I don’t just go play in an orchestra, and that’s why. It’s against my nature to blend in with 16 other violinists. It’s really, REALLY hard and I’d rather expend my energy making my own music. Of course, after playing with my last guitarist, no one will ever come close. So I have no one to create with, and that limits things. I got a new computer with some fancy schmancy recording and looping software so I could create that way, but it’s not all completely hooked up l and I can’t get my other half to help me with it since we’re tag-teaming our offspring every minute we’re at home together. And trying to write music with children climbing you is incredibly… frustrating. I canNOT multi-task, so the kids get mad or the music stinks. So I try to ignore those urges to create because there’s just no time or opportunity, but then this song pops into my head and I can’t shake this physical need to play, collaborate, even (heaven help me) sing. It is sweet, ethereal, and addicting. I feel like a junkie, jonesing for another hit. Not just any hit - that perfect place with amazing people where the music just starts coming from some other place and it feels like you’re standing outside of it, watching this magic happen almost on its own. I miss music.

Kate Rusby : Sweet Bride


(this is long and quite possibly, incredibly boring.  So if you are in a hurry, the jist is I miss creating music.  This song is absolutely lovely and one my trio does a nice version of, despite my singing backup vocals ;)  It has been in my head for a week, taunting me, saying “You wish you could write something like this… but alas, it’s not in your season..”  It’s making me feel.. creatively/musically constipated.)


I realize that my last bazillion posts or so are completely about my children or motherhood.  I really do still exist somewhere inside of all this, and I’m going to try to post about that small sliver in there.  I may have to squint though…


When I joined the BC, my first celtic band, it was a huge and surreal experience.  They were already established, recorded, and had a huge presence on the music scene in the southeast.  There were tons of gigs - pubs, concerts, festivals, we played them all and it was a dizzying, fantastic ride.  Then I migrated south o’ the border and had to quit.


Funny, when I would cry about leaving the US to give birth, the thing I was the most upset about was leaving the band.


When I came back they still had their new fiddler, so the guitarist and I started a trio with his daughter, just side things.  Parties, small pubs, etc.  It was terrifying because now there weren’t four other people to cover me up - I had to play whole sets without the singer and there was nowhere to hide, plus I was singing backup now.  I had to find (the hard part) and learn a huge new repertoire, which was daunting but ultimately really exciting and rewarding.  I was creating.  It felt so, so good.  It reminded me of my college days where I took my guitar everywhere I went, writing song after song and playing open mic every week at the Brickhaus.  Except the music I played with the trio was less angry and actually worth listening to (though I adore every friend that would come with me, cheer and support - I was a lucky girl for sure!).


A bit later, I rejoined the BC again, but there weren’t as many gigs.  And there was drama here and there, and schedules made it impossible to get together to write new material and record.  And there just weren’t that many gigs any more - pubs were closing, concerts were farther in between.  When I did play with the trio, it was always almost a cathartic experience - there was no drama, it was me and the guitar and voice, creating, improvising, having a ball making music.  It was absolutely wonderful.


I had to leave it all behind again when we moved last year, but I got to go back and play a festival with the trio this summer.  They’d learned a lot of new material with the fiddler who had replaced me so it was tough work (and I’m rusty), but standing up there on stage, dancing around the melodies, leading the guitarist and knowing he could follow ANYthing I threw at him (he’s SO unbelievably good - the best I have and will ever work with.  DANG.) was such a uplifting, amazing experience.


I asked him why the BC weren’t playing much and his reply was that NOone was playing much.  Was it the economy?  I figured - but no, he said the tide had just shifted.  A few years ago, when Riverdance, Braveheart, and Lord of the Rings were all coming out, celtic music became very much in demand, so bands started popping up.  But it’s just not the “in” thing right now, so bands are breaking up and having to compete each other for gigs.


It made sense to me - I’d felt the slow drying up processes.  So now I’m thinking - what’s the “in” thing now?  Indian?  Alaskan?  Justin Bieber?  Should I try to jump on another bandwagon?  I miss being creative.  I miss the feeling of freedom and terror that comes with improvising and composing, not just regurgitating someone else’s sound.  People often ask me why I don’t just go play in an orchestra, and that’s why.  It’s against my nature to blend in with 16 other violinists.  It’s really, REALLY hard and I’d rather expend my energy making my own music.


Of course, after playing with my last guitarist, no one will ever come close.  So I have no one to create with, and that limits things.  I got a new computer with some fancy schmancy recording and looping software so I could create that way, but it’s not all completely hooked up l and I can’t get my other half to help me with it since we’re tag-teaming our offspring every minute we’re at home together.  And trying to write music with children climbing you is incredibly… frustrating.  I canNOT multi-task, so the kids get mad or the music stinks. 


So I try to ignore those urges to create because there’s just no time or opportunity, but then this song pops into my head and I can’t shake this physical need to play, collaborate, even (heaven help me) sing.  It is sweet, ethereal, and addicting.  I feel like a junkie, jonesing for another hit.  Not just any hit - that perfect place with amazing people where the music just starts coming from some other place and it feels like you’re standing outside of it, watching this magic happen almost on its own.  I miss music.

Friday, August 20, 2010



throwback thursday


I’m getting back into the swing of things, so let’s all pretend I actually posted this on a Thursday ;)  Today I thought I’d try something different.  Back on April 10, 2008, I posted this picture and this picture of what I saw as I entered the kitchen - WonderGirl had gone into my room, found these red heels and had walked in them all the way across the house with this serious investigative attitude.  It was amazing to happen on it - and even more amazing that she didn’t hear me run for the camera so I could capture her explorative solitude.  Today I thought I’d post a different picture from that quick snapsnapsnap session, just in case anyone doubts that I gave birth to myself.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010



GPOYW - Who Threw An Awesome Wee Party For Her Awesome One Year Old And Snagged This Tee For 8 Bucks??? ME!! - edition.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010



The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of family and summer, and I’ve missed you bloggety-ness.  Today has its own whirlwind - trying to get ready physically and mentally for the anniversary of the Dude.


One year ago tomorrow, I was introduced to one of my very best friends.  I can scarcely get my mind around it.  It’s not a “look how far we’ve come in the last year!” type of incredulity, it’s more of “I still can’t believe this angel is mine.” 


A whole year of being so distractingly in love.  I am a very, very lucky girl.

Thursday, August 12, 2010



The season pass to Circus World this summer was totally worth it.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010



GPOYW - Looking For My Good Side edition.  I think it’s my left.  Your right.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

bathtime

The other week I put a few bubbles in the Dude’s bath.  I didn’t realize he’d never had a bubble bath before, and his reaction was one of reverent awe.  I felt… honored to be there as he carefully and joyfully touched bubbles for the first time and marveled at them on his fingers.  He looked up to me with the happiest face that said - “Thank you for sharing this with me!!” and stood up to survey this wonderful new world.  He clapped his hands and gurgled with pure glee as I almost passed out from the perfection of the moment.  And that’s when he joyfully peed all over the bubbles.


I actually love this job.

Sunday, August 8, 2010



This last Mother’s Day, the missionaries serving in our ward were asked to speak in sacrament meeting.  People who speak on Mother’s Day have a way of turning their talk into a sales pitch for how awesome their mom is.  Speak from what you know, right?  And two 20 year old men who are far from home for two years and only get to speak to their families twice a year during their missions… well, they can go bonkers on the subject.  Absence makes the heart grow verbose!


So I have to admit, when the first elder stood up I braced myself for an Ode To My Mother speech.  But what he said smacked me in the mental face:


“I have the most incredible mother there ever was.  And I hope every single person here disagrees with me.”


And then he went on to talk about his mom and lalala, but that opening was so refreshing to my soul.  It has been churning around in my mind lately, especially as I watch my two wee ones turn into actual people.


I walk around in a sense of awe most of the time - this 3 year old who boldly goes up to anyone and everyone and speaks so clearly and creatively.  Who is so stinking smart that a woman today assumed she was 6 because of all the words she could spell from memory.  And my almost-one-year-old who has the most engaging smile that ever was - I can hardly breathe when I look at him because he is SO. WONDERFUL.  He cheerfully jabbers on in adorable jibberish and absolutely loves this planet he gets to live on.  And I (naughty me) can’t help but feel bad for anyone who has ever given birth to a child that is not these two.    


But I’m stopped in my naughty pride when I think to myself - “I have the most incredible children the world has EVER seen.  And I hope every other mother disagrees with me.”

question

How many elders does it take to bless the sacrament in a ward in Nauvoo where the congregation consists almost entirely of families in vacation?



Answer: Eleven! FYI, for any normal congregation, it takes two. This place is packed!

Friday, August 6, 2010



I’m watching a performance in Nauvoo of some dancers and fabulous musicians in a lovely setting under the stars and mosquitos. The fiddlers are playing far more fabulous than my presently retired self, so in an effort to not feel so old and mom-ish, I’m blogging a picture of the event. Because the loud announcer man said pictures were prohibited by law.



Take that, maturity!



(Yes, I know its completely unrecognizable, but don’t go harshing my buzz. I feel awesome. And about 10.)



I picked out some new frames yesterday. I will so miss my red glasses! The styles are so dark and black now, and it just doesn’t go well with my coloring. The lady said they used to have bright frames, but they were discontinued because they never sold. Durn it. I bet I’d be smokin’ in some candy colored peeper buddies.



On the road through Iowa again. This part of the country doesn’t feel like home, but it sure is beautiful. Also, I’m feeling intensely thankful for portable DVD players and whoever invented the french fry.



The husband opened a piece of chocolate last night and found this written inside.



I wonder who Dove is marketing to??

Wednesday, August 4, 2010



GPOYW - Cute Babies Distract Beautifully From Bad Hair Days - edition.  He’s one year old this month, can you believe it??


We’re gearing up for some houseguests for the next few days, then we head to Nauvoo Round 2 for a reunion.  9 kids under the age of 5.  If I don’t return, it means I was killed in a kid stampede.  


For those who have been asking, GPOYW stands for Gratuitous Picture Of Yourself Wednesday.  You should do it too! 



(via overflowing)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010



My new sister-in-law mailed me this pic of my brother and I at his wedding in June (sidenote - I have the best sister-in-laws ever.  They mail me presents all the flippin’ time!) and it struck me how ALIKE we look.  That never occurred to me before, since all 4 of us have distinct looks from different lines of the family.  Definitely related.



This doesn’t have the type I’ve been getting from WonderGirl lately - the one where you’re sitting on the floor, she reaches her arms out wide and goes limp, basically punching you with her entire body.  


Love hurts.  (click for enlarged pic)


(viagerilee)


On the way home from the airport, I caught this radio program on the NPR Ideas Network.  It’s regular folks telling a story, like open mic for storytellers.  We all have at least one story we tell at parties that always score big.  I know Lola and my husband have some seriously awesome ones.  The stories on the program were so good, so raw, I was laughing and bawling all at the same time.  I wonder what story of mine I could tell?  The whole giving birth in Brasil thing?  The time my car broke down in the desert in New Mexico and I got in a car with a random family to drive me to Arizona?  You can call a story idea in, and then people vote on the one they like, and you could get flown to NYC to tell your story at a storyslam.  


I have a new bucket list item, people.


What story would you tell?  What story of mine is not terribly boring??



Monday, August 2, 2010

turn, turn, turn

On the way to Nauvoo, my mom and my aunt insisted on stopping at the Carthage jail.  A place for quiet contemplation.  And I worked my butt off to not take that away from the other visitors as I hid in the bottom floor of the jail trying to get my stir-crazy WonderGirl to stop screaming.  While my poor mom tried to get the sleepy Dude from screaming as well.  I hope I didn’t ruin the experience for the other people there.


It’s a wonderful thing to go to sacred religious sites, but I feel like I don’t belong there right now.  It’s just not my season in life.  Later, sure.  As long as I accept what my season is, and know that I’ll have other seasons, that’s fine.  So I got to thinking of all the other things that don’t belong in this season.  Indulge me, if you will.


It’s not my season to watch anything from primetime during primetime.


It’s not my season to wear my hair down.  Or wear jewelry. (little fingers grabbing and pinching, ouch!)


It’s not my season to take a undisturbed shower.


It’s not my season to be able to schedule a doctor’s appointment for myself.  I’d rather be sick than try to find a babysitter during the day.


It’s not my season to have a vacation that is actually relaxing.


It’s not my season to have a decent night’s sleep.


It’s not my season to fit into my clothes.


It’s not my season to read a book or do a puzzle while laying on the floor.


It’s not my season to walk through a grocery store without singing primary songs at the top of my lungs to keep the Dude from crawling out of the basket.


It’s not my season to hear anything said in church.


It’s not my season to have anything in my house where I originally put it.


It’s not my season to be able to eat an Oreo in plain sight in my own home.


This is, of course, not a comprehensive list.  I will probably be adding to it.  What about you?  What is out of your season?



Get it??  Hahahahaha!!!


(via neuralwalls)

Remember: the heavens will not be filled with those who never made mistakes, but with those who recognized that they were off course and who corrected their ways to get back in the light of gospel truth.

Remember: the heavens will not be filled with those who never made mistakes, but with those who recognized that they were off course and who corrected their ways to get back in the light of gospel truth.
Dieter F. Uchtdorf (via findingjoyinthejourney)

i'm slightly happy to be in wisconsin again

Long story short, I’m back.  Wisconsin eventually let my parents out of the state (it really only gave us trouble trying to get IN both times) and I am back to the regular hum of life.  I have gone an entire WEEK and a HALF without checking blogs and being on the web.  And dangit, I missed you.  I get lonely without y’all.


I’ll get to catching up with you… anything huge happen while I was gone?



Truer words have never been blogged then reblogged.


(via greenmnms:gerilee:in-the-margins)

What's the opposite of pride AND humility? Self flagellation?

This weekend at our stake conference , our leaders spoke a few times about pride and the importance of humility.  So I did a good ol' s...