Wednesday, August 31, 2011

the Economist's top 10 most livable cities in the world

via tiredandinspird:

10. Auckland, New Zealand

9. Adelaide, Australia

8. Perth, Australia

7. Helsinki, Finland

6. Sydney, Australia

5. Calgary, Canada

4. Toronto, Canada

3. Vancouver Canada

2. Vienna, Austria

1. Melbourne, Australia

I’ve been to #1, #2, #4, #6, and #9 (and the airport of #10 :) and lemme tell you, I’d move to any of them in a heartbeat.  Like today.  NOW!!!!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

this might seem like a tmi post...

… but I’m a mom, so it’s expected.  The Dude just pooped and peed in the potty for the first time!!!!!!!  For you non-parents out there, this is a HUGE deal.  Most of all I now know that without a shadow of a doubt that my son will do ANYTHING for candy and snuggles.  ANYTHING.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Rainbow Connection : Weezer feat. Haley Williams This song is a bad mood killer. And high five to them for this awesome rendition!!

Rainbow Connection : Weezer feat. Haley Williams

This song is a bad mood killer.  And high five to them for this awesome rendition!!

a bad start for Monday

It’s Monday.  School starts for WonderGirl on Thursday.  I’ve been doing okay.  I got the morning preschool I wanted so we can still have violin/piano/playtime in the afternoon while the Dude is napping, plus there’s no school Wednesday.  That thought has kept me afloat.  Except this morning I realized next year she’ll be in ALL day school.  Every day.  How will we practice??  How will I stand having her gone from me for so long every day until she’s 18 and she leaves me forever holy snap I can’t breathe.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

overheard in my kitchen

Scene: At the table as a family for dinner. The wife is gushing about the upcoming trip to the Big City.

Wife: We only have a few weeks to plan - we have to get every single thing perfect!!

Husband: Why?

Wife: Are you kidding me?? A vacation? Without children? To NEW YORK?? This is a once in a lifetime thing!!

Husband: No, it’s not. We’ll do crazy stuff again.

Wife: Okay, true, but this is a still HUGE and we have to plan every second exactly right. We have to get the most out of every moment and see everything and do everything and…

Husband, interrupting: I don’t know what you are planning to see, but I’m mostly going for the shopping and food.

stunned silence

Wife: …

She melts into a puddle on the floor as she realizes she is married to the most perfect man on earth.

aaaaaaand scene.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I apologize for writing an entire post in caps.  Although in this case, it is entirely appropriate.


I am SO PUMPED to get this album!!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

nothing to see here, keep it moving, folks

I always knew I needed to have more than one child.  I felt if I was really going to have a family, I was going to work through my crazy and go all out.  Give my kids someone to commiserate in with in therapy when they grow up and realize their mother was a complete lunatic.  

Of course, once I became a parent it became VERY clear that I had my work cut out for me.  Physically, chemically, emotionally, I’ve found I had challenges I had previously not imagined.  I’m thanking my lucky stars that that’s ALL I’ve had to deal with.  I know it could be much, much worse.

So anywho, when WonderGirl was about 18 months I started praying to know when the right time to add to my brood would be.  I just asked when the right time was, that was all.  And I didn’t get an answer for a while, but when I did I knew it was right.  As scary as it was to go though the horror that was becoming a mom the first time around - oh, and and us having to up and move AGAIN during my last trimester, I felt peace.  I knew it was right.

The timing was perfect for WonderGirl.  She was potty trained, and was ready to go to daycare 2 mornings a week so I could have some time to learn all about the Dude.  It was an adjustment, but like I said, God’s timing has a way of being just right.

The Dude is a whole different animal.  He has other strengths that I’m just discovering.  When I look at where WG was at his age, and where he is, the difference is shocking - but at the same time, I’ve been there for his progress and I see his pace - it’s not as fast, but every day I can actually watch him use all his mental and physical energy to break though and accomplish or learn something new.  It’s like watching the strength of a mountain climber - and I’m in awe.  He is amazing.

I’ve been praying to know if this is it.  The Dude needs a lot more hands-on involvement to learn which I LOVE to do bytheby, and the thought of having a baby while I’m working my brains out trying to get him consistently verbal makes my head spin.  I pray to know what I should do - and I’m not getting any answers.  I feel like I’m climbing the mountain along with the Dude, and we aren’t to a resting point yet.  It’s close, I can TASTE it, but we’re not there and I have no idea when we will be.

(aside - remember how I got WG’s first consistent words to be “please” and “thank you” because I’m one tough broad?  He’s there!!!!  He says “Thanks Mom!” about 600 times a day without prompting, without begging - and SO cheerfully… I feel like I’ve won an Olympic medal, seriously.)

I’m just typing this out because I needed to see it.  Having another one is still very much an option, but I sure wish I could get a clear answer. Something like opening up my scriptures one day and reading “And behold, I decree that my servant Reva shall only be allowed two children to traumatize.”  I’d be totally okay with that.  Or “Yea, verily I say, Reva needeth to have another child, despite her obvious mental instability.”  Or even “Patience - thy Dude shall be prepared for a new sibling on such-and-such date, so stoppeth the freaking and chillax.” I’m cool with all of these options.

But I open up my scriptures and I get stuff like Thou shalt not amuzzle the ox when he treadeth out the bcorn.  (Deuteronomy 25:4) 

That’s not helping.  

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Balloons galore + mattress on the floor + the kids’s favorite babysitters and friends = the perfect 2 year old partay.  My Young Women (teen gals) from church wouldn’t hear of having me miss the Wednesday activity because the hubs had a meeting and it was the Dude’s birthday, so they came over (with Jenna - greatest counselor ever with her super kiddos) and played with the kids until the Dude looked like he was going to hyperventilate.  Heck, Jenna even brought the Dude home-made playdough!!!  There are so many awesome action shots I can hardly choose one!

This was my day yesterday.  I prefer the first scenario, myself :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Have I mentioned the Dude is 2?  And that I am very conflicted about that fact?

Excuse the fact that this pic is blurry.  He’s 2.  They’re ALL blurry.

I love how I’m all “Let’s look adorable for posterity’s sake!” and he’s all “Why am I not in motion right now?  You have 2 seconds to start throwing me or imagonna start whining, so help me Elmo.”

Remember how when you’d wake up on your birthday or Christmas, the whole world felt different?  I try to create a different atmosphere in the house when there’s a birthday.  Not much, usually crepe streamers and tape - and for the Dude all I used here was balloons, yarn and construction paper.  Little things that make a big impact, you know?  I think he appreciated it.  (scroll for all 4 picture thingys)

My Dude is 2 today.  Really.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Gogol Bordello - Not a Crime To prove that I’m not mopey, this was the next song on our Living Room Dance Party playlist. The Dude is doing a toddler form of head-banging. And it is AWESOME.

Gogol Bordello - Not a Crime

To prove that I’m not mopey, this was the next song on our Living Room Dance Party playlist.  The Dude is doing a toddler form of head-banging.  And it is AWESOME.

Blue Skies - Noah and the Whale I’m anxious today. I’ve been thinking of how lucky I am to do this stay-at-home mom gig, and have the freedom to focus on just that while husband has to go out and be the breadwinner. That’s got to be insane, all that soul-crushing responsibility. On the flip-side, sometimes I feel like a spectator of my own destiny, trying to make the best of what the fates decide to toss my way. Also it’s raining. This song is just right today. PS. In reading this, it sounds like I’m depressed. I’m not, I’m in a remarkably cheerful mood.

Blue Skies - Noah and the Whale

I’m anxious today.  I’ve been thinking of how lucky I am to do this stay-at-home mom gig, and have the freedom to focus on just that while husband has to go out and be the breadwinner.  That’s got to be insane, all that soul-crushing responsibility.  On the flip-side, sometimes I feel like a spectator of my own destiny, trying to make the best of what the fates decide to toss my way.

Also it’s raining.  This song is just right today.

PS.  In reading this, it sounds like I’m depressed.  I’m not, I’m in a remarkably cheerful mood.  

I have to admit, my favorite part of swim lessons is waiting outside the pool with the Dude for the half hour. We snuggle while he watches the trucks driving behind us like it’s the greatest movie ever. Nothing can be bad with the world when you have a Dude babbling and kissing your ears - his affection is so unaffected and genuine. I’ll have to remember this magical moment for later when we do some grocery shopping and he does his best impression of a rabid badger the entire time.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

ima just gonna post this here

In response to my dear Jane and Cellogirl, who were all “maybe I should jump ship to Tumblr cuz Reva’s new layout is purtier than the Bloggerz” - let me give you reasons why Tumblr is the awesome:

  • Audio posts.  YEAH.

  • Really fantastic layout options (called themes) that you can personalize easier in HTML than Blogger.  And they look way cooler than all those cutesy things made for Blogger too - but that’s just my personal preference.  HTML wrangling in Blogger or Wordpress is for folks who are smarter and cooler than I.

  • The interface is all glossy and cool looking.  Blogger looks like an office park.

Um… Okay, that’s really why I dig it here.

Why Blogger is what I’m still using for my family blog:

  • You know how you can post pictures in your entries?  Not so easily done in Tumblr.  You can post pics at the top, but if you want to add more in the entry, you have to save them in Flickr or Picassa or some other lovely URL makey thingy.  Not hard to do, just a little more effort.

  • All those widgets and links on the side of your blog?  Blogger OWNS that show.  In Tumblr if you want ‘em, you do it all HTML manually.  Which is why my blogroll is crazy and hopelessly out of date.  It’s not hard to do, it just takes more than the 4 seconds it takes in Blogger.  And I have cable TV, so my free time is pretty much gone.

  • Commenting.  Blogger has it, it’s easy to use because you don’t have to do anything really/  Tumblr doesn’t have a commenting option, so you go and use Disqus which you have to manually add to the HTML (although not always, if the layout/theme you pick has it built in) and sometimes it can be a total pill.  

They have stuff in common, like the ability to have multiple blogs and stuff.  And you can blog from your phone by apps or even texting if you want with either.  With Tumblr you can even do an audio post by calling in from your phone!  I did that once and had my brother play some violin for you.  And you can have stick your posts up on your FB or Twitter which I think you can do with Blogger as well.

So that’s why I’m here.  I mean, I’ve been blogging for over 10 years - I have some pretty big opinions on whats I likes.  For a family blog with lots of pictures, Blogger isn’t as pretty, but it’s easy in its own way.  And for my personal blog, Tumblr is just right for my shallow I-like-shiny-things side.  That being said, if you WANT to follow me to the dark side, you’re more than welcome to join me - and I’m here for free tech support 24/7 :)  Oh, and I made the header with Picnik.  Which is awesomesauce times infinity.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

GPOYW - Trying To Amuse Myself And Take A Self Portrait Since The Dude Wouldn’t Stand Still To Take A Decent Picture As Usual And While I was Doing That I Got Distracted By His Screaming - edition.

o hai

Didja notice the new layout thingy?  A new layout day is as awesome as a haircut day.  Whee!!  Awesome points:

  • Larger pics and videos.  

  • Share button.  Right there at the bottom right of the post.  Yeah, you dig it, you can Facebook, Tweet or Google# it.  I JUST BLEW MY OWN MIND.

  • Random button at the top.  In the mood to play Russian Roulette with old Reva posts?  BLAM.

  • It’s pretty.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

And then today I woke up and thought - hey, I wonder if I can sew jeans.  Because I bought these awesome things a few years back online for pennies but in person they were weirdly baggy.  And now they aren’t.  Did you know you can sew jeans with absolutely no fancy equipment, training or brains??  Apparently you can!!!

Next up… a skirt, methinks.  With a ruffle involved.

america is

having your daughter tell the check-out lady at the grocery store who you are going to vote for and having said lady suddenly stop chatting with you, and then you walking to the car feeling bad that the lady had been offended, but as you finish piling kids and food, you are greeted by that same but now breathless lady who had gone and run all over the sprawling parking lot to find you and give you a bag of groceries you’d accidentally left behind in the store.

I wish our elected officials had that level of civility.

Monday, August 8, 2011

I found this scrap material at the thrift store this morning and decided that I don’t care if my bum is not in shape for horizontal-stripes - and made a skirt out of it.  Oh, and took WG to swim lessons, had a picnic and did violin AND piano lessons.  Holy Monday, Batman!! 

title here is

I downloaded a songwriting app that lets you play guitar chord progressions with your phone. I am not impressed, but I am amused. It has some preset chord progressions to familiar pop tunes - but “U Belong With I” by Tailor Fast had me stumped for a minute.

Got it yet? Oh Engrish, I love you so.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

anti-social networking

I think Facebook was invented to make me feel good about my children.  There are several moms on my feed that only post negative things about their kids and being their mom.  Exclusively, and almost hourly.  I get that for them, it’s a stress reliever.  And I appreciate that they do it, because it makes me feel oh-so-much better about my own tornado-children. Who, however insane, haven’t poured chocolate syrup in my dishwasher.  Yet.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Along with makeovers, the sleepover involves picture taking.  I wanted to see if I could make some kind of photobooth type thing work for the event… apparently I can.  Thanks,!


I’m EXHAUSTED from our trip.  That’s the sign of a good trip, I think.  I miss my parents and family like a crazy person, but at least I’m at home and not wrestling with the Dude in antique-filled historic homes.  WHEW.

So, I’m pooped and trying to climb out of piles and piles of sweaty laundry -  what do you think I’m doing tonight?  

If you guessed hosting a sleepover for the Young Women from church, you’d be right.  Am I insane?

If you guessed YES, then you are also correct.  Oh, oh - and ask me what I’m doing tomorrow AFTER said really insane idea???

If you said driving teenagers to Chicago to go to the temple there, you’d also be right.  Yeah - the drive alone is at least 7 hours round-trip.  

Am I a masochist?


The plan tonight is Pride and Prejudice (the Kiera Knightly one - we don’t have a whole week to see the BBC one) and then the Bollywood version - Bride and Prejudice.  Some pizza making, manicure-ing, and makeovers and photobooth goodness.  Except for the makeover guru won’t be here until 10pm…. I know.  I know.

Also, I’ve been agonizing over the drive to Chicago for weeks.  That’s an all day thing, and I don’t get time off from my day job.  There is no easy temp agency to call.  Plus, since I’m taking all the teenage girls to Chicago, that means all my usual babysitters are leaving town!  I have been thinking I wouldn’t go and just hope there were enough adults to handle things, but a friend who has 3 active kids of her own offered to take mine for the day.  I’d be overjoyed, but instead I have insane guilt.  Leave my kids?  With a mom who already has 3 (plus her youngest can count for at least 3 more).

So last night, one of my young women called me and asked me accusingly if I planning on not coming to the temple because of child care.   I admitted I’d considered it, and she told me in no uncertain terms that would be unacceptable, and her sister (visiting from college) had offered to stay and watch my kids.

I may have cried.

So, I’m back, and completely batty.  How YOU doin’?

HEAR YE. I need to document the fact that I ran 3 miles and didn't feel like death.  So just to make sure it wasn't a fluke, I did...