Friday, April 30, 2010

11 Years.

11 years ago today I married HIM! My T.O. My hunk a hunk a burnin' love.
11 years ago today we began our eternal family.
And now here we are, 11 years later. Happy. In love.
A little grayer. A little bigger around the middle. A lot more in love.
Daniel, I love you! I couldn't have made a better man if I tried!
Happy Anniversary!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Camping On The Prairie.

So I was flipping through channels while my kiddos were out in the incredible gusts of wind raging through the backyard playing stick ball with an actual stick because we no longer have a bat and came upon Little House On The Prairie oh how I wanted to be Laura even though I'm the oldest and Mary is the oldest and most obvious choice I have freckles too and I hit the info button on the remote which proceeded to tell me that the episode is the one where Caroline hurts her leg which gets incredibly infected while her family is camping and waiting for her to join them but she almost dies and cuts the infection out of her leg but then someone the reverend I think comes and finds her and helps her.
So I ask you.
Isn't Camping and Little House On The Prairie a little redundant?
I thought so.

Monday, April 26, 2010

A Day In The Life.

Here we are again. Another week...
Monday...Another Wolf Den meeting. This time the boys earned the Video Game belt loop. So much fun! 8 year old boys!
Tuesday...My visiting teachers came! Yay. Ruthie came home from school and then got all the cake decorating stuff out. When I asked what she was doing, she said, "Don't worry, I've got it all under control." Then she dropped to the floor when I took the picture!
Wednesday...Webelos and Piano. My kids are getting good at piano. Isaac has earned his ReadyMan badge. This is a gift from neighbor friends. Fun window art.
Thursday...I met one of my counselors to set up chairs for the Primary Talent Show. When we got home, I told Ruthie to go to the big freezer and get a Hot Pocket for lunch. She came up and said that it was squishy. I touched it and then ran down to find all the ice cream sandwiches I'd bought for the Talent Show were melted. Along with everything else. I dropped the chickie off at school and ran out for more treats.
The talent show was awesome. We have very talented kids! The treats were a big hit and I brought the extras home to feed them to my kids for breakfast the next morning. I really needed to go grocery shopping!
Friday...I had moved time out Sam's stool because he was buggin'. When I grabbed for the stool, my wrist hit a hinge on a door. All I got was the little prick that barely bled. It hurt. And this morning I could see why. There was a 3 inch bruise on my wrist.
Daniel and I got our finderprints done to update our domestic adoption stuff. Then we got lunch. I love when he works at home. It's like I have a hubby again. We had movie night and watched Everyone's Hero.
Saturday...I went to Salt Lake to meet some friends for lunch! Yum. And Fun. Another movie night with Because Of Winn-Dixie. So good! This is Sam's paw print on the printer.
Sunday...Stake Conference. Good meeting. I'm glad Sacrament Meeting isn't 2 hours long!
Isn't he cute?! I love that his teeth are almost bigger than his head!
Did you feel that? That shift?
Have a great week!

Friday, April 23, 2010


Kids all off to school....Check
House a total disaster....Check
Dirty dishes in the sink...stink....Check
1 pot of Mac n Cheese on the table that the kids ended up just eating out of because mom wasn't home to make sure they ate properly but at least they ate....Check
Mom's back full of knots because the stress is finally done and now I can feel them....Check
1 broken freezer with 5 boxes of ice cream sandwiches totally melted and dripping on the meat that is now melting because the freezer isn't even cold....Check
No milk, no eggs, no cereal, only a heel of bread and lots of thawed out chicken nuggets....Check
Enough ice cream sandwiches (from the ice cream recovery act) to cover breakfast for 3 hungry kids....Check
Primary Talent Show done and a huge rockin' success....Check

Less than 7 weeks before I'm on a cruise ship with my man...Check

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Daniel and I woke up at 1 am to loud and long thunder and rain. Then we ALL woke up at 6:30 am to loud long thunder and lots of rain. We're tired! And a little cranky. When I picked Isaac up from Webelos to go to Piano lessons, it started to hail like nothin' I've ever seen! Then I hit Isaac's arm with my car door as we were getting out all fast and furious like. It left a mark!
But Daniel will be home around 7 tonight!! YAY!! And it's pouring where he is. So he'll be wet.
And my cement has freckles.
I'm going to bed. Maybe at 7.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Day In The Life.

Monday...Sam's Birthday!!! It's been a long 8 year wait, but we finally got there! You can easily see Sam's most favorite thing. Godzilla. He got the Godzilla doll. Best Birthday Ever!
We also had a Wolf Den meeting. Oh so fun!! They all earned a Music belt loop and each ate about 4 cupcakes!
Daniel and I also purchased our plane tickets to get to our cruise!
Tuesday...Went to Pier 1 and got the basket thingy. Then to Roberts for the filling. It's a corner softener. Don't mock! I still don't know what to do with the other vast corner. But my visiting teachers are coming on Tuesday. I may pick their creative brains.
Wednesday...Piano and Webelos. Is there really anything else to a Wednesday? I had a Stake Auxillliary training that night that was very good. This is a picture of my 8 year old. This is his "let me blink in the picture" pose.
Thursday...Tax day. But we were already done many moons ago. So that's all I've got for Thursday. This is Ruthie. Cute!
Friday...Date night to dinner and the temple. Again we are so happy we are staying here. We enjoyed just sitting and enjoying our evening out!
Daniel told me to go in and look at Ruthie asleep. This is what I saw. Later when I checked on her, she was just like this, but with her finger on her cheek like she was deep in thought.
Saturday...Chores and chores. And salty bread. Our niece is leaving for her mission on Wednesday, so we went to an open house in her honor. We met a friend of hers who lived in China for 5 months about a year ago. It was fun to talk about squat potties with someone who lived it.
Sunday...Popcorn popping on the Apricot tree. yay! Spring is here. We went to hear niece Taylee speak in church. Then went to Primary in our ward. We love sitting on Sunday night and watching America's Funniest Home Videos. In our jammies. With popcorn. We are ready for a new week!
And just in case you were wondering, we use those plane tickets in just 7 weeks!
And only 6 weeks left of school!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Playdough Bread?

What does it mean if, when you are baking bread, it does not rise? And then when you bake it, it looks like this?....
At first I thought it was our oven. That it was time to get a new one!!
No such luck.
As I made a new batch of bread dough I realized what my mistake was.
I doubled the salt.
Have you ever had Playdough Bread?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Day In The Life.

Okay. I know this is days late. Days. But I've been busy. The whole let's stay here for the rest of our lives thing exhausted me. I needed to rest. So here is last week...

Monday...One week left of being 7. I invited all the Wolves (Cub Scouts) to have a den meeting at our house. Sam has been waiting 2 years for this! No one came. It was still Easter vacay. But we went to lunch, got Sam's cub book and shirt and had a fun day anyway!Tuesday...Snow. Who invited the snow?! Seriously, there were INCHES of it! With snow boots and gloves we went on with our regular Tuesday duties! Wednesday...I don't think this has anything to do with Wednesday. One of the kids took this picture. The blur is nice. You can't see the wrinkles and stuff. Piano and Webelos. Yay! Thursday...We are hoping this fella will start to get to be home earlier than 8 pm soon. The project will be done soon and then we get our dad back. April 8 marks one month (according to the date) until Sam's baptism! Yay! Friday...I went on Isaac's field trip. 4th graders are really funny. We went to the Air Museum, an historic museum and the Rock and Gem show at the Golden Spike Arena. We all froze our patooties off at a park for lunch. But the Diet Pepper sorta made up for it.

That night Sam got to choose where we went to dinner to celebrate his birthday. He chose our favorite Mexican place. Daniel was taking a picture of him and saying something about his birthday when the wiatress came by. Then she and another gal came and put this grande sombrero on Sam's head and sang Happy Birthday. So fun. Now Ruthie wants to come here for her birthday. Saturday...Boutiful Baskets, Baptism, Ruthie went to a friend's birthday party. Then we all went to the Rock and Gem show. So fun. The kids each took $10 and spent it all on really cool rocks and gems. It was about 5:30 when we finally started home and we were starving. So I took us all out to a Pizzeria close by. One of our favs. We got stuffed and now no one is allowed to ask to go to dinner for 6 months! Except for Daniel and me. We still need to date! Sunday...Church. Lunch. Get together with family to talk and plan the cruise and eat yummy treats. And play with cousins. This is Isaac's B-52 plane he built. He's so talented! I am actually taking some pictures this week. You know, now that we're half way through it.

Have a great rest of your week!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

My Soapbox.

As many of you are aware, there has been some news time given to International Adoption as of late. My heart is broken and I feel the need to stand on a soapbox for a moment.

First, every child deserves a mother and a father! No question in my mind. EVERY CHILD deserves a mother and a father. There are children all over the world, who, through no fault of their own, do not have a mommy and daddy. Disaster, illness, death, abandonment, selfishness, politics, and many other things have given way to create children we refer to as orphans. There is no way to express the pain in my heart for all those children who do not have a home and a mommy and daddy. To love them. To nurture them. To feed them. To kiss and hug them. To protect them. To provide for them. I would love to see all of the orphaned children and all the children who are abused and/or neglected be placed in a home with parents and love and protection. I am not asking that everyone now try to adopt. It can't work like that. But those who feel a desire to have a child join their family. Who feel that there is one more person who needs to be with them. Do it. Do it boldly. And do it now. And to the governments who put regulations and limitations on who can adopt and under what circumstances they can adopt. Knock it off! Thank you!

Second, International Adoption (from now on IA) is a difficult and heart wrenching experience. I had no idea what we were getting ourselves into when we brought our daughter home. How she would change our lives forever. How she would look at her brothers with so much love and admiration. How she would wrap people around her finger no matter where she was. How she would smile and how my heart sang when she did. Nor did I realize how difficult it would be. I refer to the first 3 months we had her in our arms as “Hell On Wheels”. It was hard. I didn't leave the house for 3 months. I only went grocery shopping after she was asleep for the night. I held on to anything that looked like she trusted me with all I had. I had to prove myself. I had to teach her that I would always be there for her. That I would never leave her. That I love her with all my heart, even though she didn't even know me. After 3 months of intense attachment therapy, I finally saw the light at the end of the tunnel. When a child has been institutionalized, there are deep rooted issues that many are not ever aware of. Some of that comes out as mistrust. Some comes out as violence. Some comes out as self destruction. I can't tell you how grateful I am that Daniel and I (and our boys) stuck with our sweet girl. That we worked hard each and every day and night to teach her that we are hers. Forever. There is help for those who need it. There are people who can step in and correct behavior and teach a parent how to parent a previously institutionalized child. How to attach to a newly adopted child. I wish every IA parent went into IA with eyes wide open and all the resources listed and ready to be contacted!

Third, Adoption is wonderful and part of Heavenly Father's plan. There is something about adoption that rings true and everlasting and real. We are all adopted, afterall. As children of Christ, we are all adopted. Isn't it wonderful?! When we, as husband and wife, realize that birthing our children is not part of the plan for us, many turn to adoption. But it has to be a full hearted turn. Both have to agree and feel the necessary pull to it. If one or both don't, it will never work. Children are an heritage of the Lord (Psalm 127:3). Adoption is hard. Heck! Parenting is hard. But the children are worth it. If they weren't, well my dears, we would have been lost a long time ago. We were all children once ourselves. And to have the wonderful and beautiful title of Parent or more specifically, Mother, we should do everything in our power to give our children everything they need!

And lastly, the little boy who was sent back to Russia. I hope he gets the help he needs. I hope a family is found for him that will love him and nurture him and help him. I hope the mother who sent him on a plane by himself to fly half way around the world has justice brought to her.

And now I'll step off the soapbox.

Cute Quips.

This is a conversation at dinner last night...

Sam: "Not everyone is human. You start out as small as a germ. Then you grow into a baby. Then you grow into a toddler. Then you grow into a teenager. Then you grow into a human being. Then you grow into a mom or dad. "

Me: "Oh! So I'm a human being? "

Sam: "Yes. But we (referring to himself and his siblings) aren't human beings yet. But we will be when we're adults....And we're still germs, too."

.....Hmmm. It all makes sense now!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Now that my kids' ages are all even again (6, 8, 10) I can think straight. It's an even thing. Hard to explain. But it's a curse! I need to finish my family room. I have one wall where I will do vinyl lettering...Lori, I'll get with you soon!...and the Proclamation. Then I have this corner...
I have been thinking a table with a lamp and books. But the space is kinda big. And kinda weird.
And I can't find a table that I like that's less than $150! And the vent has to be able to breathe. The room becomes a vacuous hot cave in the summer. I don't like summer for that very reason!
Any suggestions for what I can do to this small but significant space?!
Then, when the room is done, I will still need to do something for a window treatment. I may need to wait till my kids are 8, 10 and 12.

Monday, April 12, 2010

I Have An 8 Year Old!

For the second time in my life, I have an 8 year old son!
This time....Sam!
Sam has been waiting for this moment for many years! Well, at least for 8 years.
Sam is my silly boy. He loves to entertain.
I rarely get a straight face from him.
Isn't he just the cutest?!
He gets his entertaining talent from his dad. Who he emulates well!
Sam will be baptized next month.
He starts Cub Scouts today!
Then we'll have cake.
Sam we love you and we are so happy your are ours!!
Happy birthday!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Pink Lemonade.

How do you get pink lemonade? I mean, I've never seen a pink lemon. I don't think there is anything wrong with pink lemonade. I do like to drink it. But I can't imagine a pink lemon would be as sour as a yellow lemon.

We have had a rough go lately at our house. Not at odds with each other, mind you. Just trying to figure out what we are supposed to do. Where we are supposed to go. We have been in limbo for a couple of months and it was eating us alive. But we finally made a decision that was RIGHT. Isn't it funny when you feel that there needs to be a change so you pray and sit in the temple and fast and talk and you look at all the options and then when it really comes down to it you don't need to actually make a change because there doesn't need to be a change only the experience to get you to appreciate the fact that there won't be change? Don't you love run on sentences?

Let me go back to the beginning. When we were engaged, we looked at how our lives would come together and where we needed to live to do what needed to be done. Without even much discussion, we knew we needed to look for a house close to where Daniel worked at the time. When I saw this house, I knew this was where we needed to be. Daniel kept telling me that the kitchen was small. I know, I don't care, this is our house. We made an offer and it became ours! We knew this was where we would be for the rest of our lives. This was where our grand kids would come and visit us. We love this house. We love the neighborhood. We love our ward. We love the schools. Etc.

Right after getting home with Ruthie, Daniel was offered a job that would have him commuting to Salt Lake. We knew it was the right time and the right job. A wonderful opportunity. So he took it. Then, a couple years later, the company made a decision that would affect us for, well, forever. They wanted to move all the IT people from SL and Provo to one location. The south end of the SL valley. Many people actually live up where we do. And further north. Many people moved. Many found new jobs. We knew he needed to stay at the job and that we needed to stay here.

Then we re-thought that plan. Last year. Maybe we should move closer to work. I would be closer to my family. We could have a bigger kitchen. But even before we got serious about looking for a house, we knew we didn't need to move. The reasons for not moving last year became obvious to us over the course of the year. Those reasons still exist, but this year brought new challenges. Pink lemons, if you will.

Back to the pink lemonade for a minute. You know the saying, “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade”? Meaning, make the best of your situation. But what if the situation demands a change be made? What if the situation isn't horrible, sour, so to speak, and the changes that need to be made aren't horrible? Just change. Just action needed to be taken. Not negative, not horrible, not sour, but life changing nonetheless. Pink lemons. Did you like that I wrote nonetheless? I thought that was totally cool!

Our pink lemons showed up as a move. Relocation. New schools. New ward. New neighborhood. New friends. Not horrible. Just change. Different. With opportunities. Potential for growth and learning. Pink lemons.

So Daniel and I began the process of deciding what was best for our family. Daniel doesn't get home until 8 pm most nights. He is working most Saturdays and sometimes on Sunday. Some nights he'll get a phone call at 11 pm from someone needing his help with something. Then he doesn't get to bed until after midnight and then still has to get up and go again in the morning. Our kids see their dad long enough to brush their teeth and say goodnight. It sucks, to tell ya the truth.

So we looked at moving on a more serious level. Actually making plans for our house so we can sell or rent it. Making lists of what we wanted in a house and what we would be willing to leave out if necessary. Knowing that our present situation could leave this house sitting empty for as long as necessary, but needing to be in a house and ready for school to start at the end of July. We have been stressed out. Our burden has been heavy. We knew that we needed to make these serious changes. I even made it all known to my Priesthood advisor in my calling so that a change could be made in Primary. This was all very painful.

Then something happened. A potential job offer. From Daniel's previous boss at his old job. He could be just 5 minutes away! An answer to prayers??? Well. It just threw in another angle that made things more muddy. What if the job wasn't actually offered? What if she couldn't offer the money he required? What if? What if? What if? Pink lemons all over the place. Then the phone call came. But things didn't really go smoothly when Daniel said he couldn't leave his current job until later in the summer. Umm. She needs to fill the position sooner. So that just added to the confusion and made the burden that much heavier. So we focused on moving.

I began looking for a house. Over the weekend we went and looked at a couple of them. Do you know what it's like to drive through a neighborhood and feel squished and suffocated? That's what it felt like. Those were definitely not where we were going. But we pressed on.

For the last couple of months we have been focused on the pink lemons and making pink lemonade. Taking a situation and making necessary changes so we could be happy and have our family be together and happier. We need our dad home with us. We need a not so stressed out dad. We need to make a serious change.

On Monday and Tuesday I sat with a goal in mind to find as many homes as a I could in the areas we were interested in with all the things I wanted in a house in the budget we named. I started to write down addresses. I just didn't LOVE the houses. If the kitchen was big, the dining room had carpet. If the wall colors were perfect, the kitchen was dull. If the kitchen was just not me, the rest of the house was beautiful. And on and on and on. I was feeling defeated. But we still have a few months. And each time I would turn around and see my house, I would just feel so happy about MY home. My family room is coming together just how I want it and I love it. But I need to leave it for someone else to enjoy. And possibly paint over.

Tuesday night Daniel and I were sitting in bed and wondering what to do. It seems we just figure we're moving but we aren't thrilled. So I kept asking him what we are going to do. Finally he said, “Let's just stay.” At first I thought it was just the tired in him. But he kept saying it. Do you know the feeling of a burden being lifted? That's what we had. A smile came to my face that is still there. I feel lighter. I am happy. We are staying here.

So why all the drama? My feeling is that in order to truly appreciate our home and who we are here, we needed to be brought to a point of losing it. Of having to start all over. Of talking my kids into all the “wonderful” things that would happen when we move. We are happy here. When I told the kids this morning, they all smiled and got a bit giddy. We love it here.

So now we focus on new carpet for us to enjoy. Finishing the basement so the boys will have their own rooms. Here. In this house. I will finish the family room and then move on to Ruthie's room. I will continue to love my friends and to build new friendships. Here. In my own home. And maybe you'll find me drinking pink lemonade more often. In my small, wonderful kitchen.

Monday, April 5, 2010

A Day In The Life.

I really thought I did a marvelous job with pictures this week. Buuuut....Umm. I'm not sure what happened. Oh well.

Monday...For FHE we started the Easter All Week theme at our house. Sunday is Palm Sunday, so we talked about the triumphal entry and got palm leaves to add to our experience. Monday was when Jesus cleansed the temple. I have coins that my parents brought back from Jerusalem. We used those as our visual. Oooh.
Isaac was up all night coughing so he stayed home and slept. Yes. He actually slept. And it wasn't even dark outside. My kids just don't do that.
Tuesday...I decided that our mantel would be our visual for our week's learning. Don't the palms look fanastic in the vase thingy? We also added pictures. Tuesday Isaac went back to school. Gladly even. And our lesson was about the first and great commandment. And I just realized I do have a picture but didn't put it on here. We talked about loving God first and then loving others. We painted little hearts, put our names on them and then stuck them on a big heart that says Love One Another. We then put that on the mantel.
Wednesday...Piano and Webelos. Isaac is working on his Readyman badge this month. This is a heart shaped chicken nugget Isaac found. I don't know how he got to Wendy's to get lunch. But he did! We learned about the parable of the 10 Virgins and lit our oil lamp.
Thursday...The oil lamp again. We talked about the Last Supper and the Garden of Gethsemane. We had unleavened bread. No one cared for it. But my kids know quite a bit about all this stuff. Apparently they DO listen! Thursday was also the first day of Easter break. We had a boring day. Friday would be much better.
Friday...As an Easter break fun thing, we took the kiddos to the 3D How To Train Your Dragon. We loved it! It was snowing when we came out and when we got home it hailed a bit. Those are the armadillos in the hail. We learned about Jesus' trial, crucifixion and burial.
Saturday...Daniel took Sam and Ruthie to the city Easter egg hunt. I didn't buy a single piece of Easter candy this year. Not even baskets. The kids each got to choose a chocolate bunny and one other thing. That was it for goodies. The rest was the Spiritual aspect. Today we watched conference and learned about Missionary work in the Spirit World. We are lucky to have Uncle Aaron and Cousin Rebecca there working hard while we work here.
Sunday...More conference. The theme I got from all sessions this time was family. The role of mothers and fathers. I loved every minute of it!! We watched To This End Was I Born. We talked about the Resurrection and had a Resurrection breakfast. The best part was when the kids asked if we could do this every year. You mean you don't want to color eggs and get baskets of candy and wait for the Easter bunny? You would rather learn about the Savior and celebrate with a breakfast and talking about Him? I can handle that.
We went to Abbie and Poppy's house for birthdays and Easter. I can't say we didn't have ANY commercialization. But it was nice to not have it at home.
I wonder if I could get away with no presents for Christmas?
Have a terrific week!

Friday, April 2, 2010

What To Do?

So what do I do when I am making a batch of brownies and I triple the amount of water by accident?

I triple the whole shebang and make 2 really thick pans of brownies.
And then I eat them! Oh, my family eats them, too.

What do you do?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Thought For Thursday.

My grandma was asked at one time in her life why we don't use the Cross on our church. As you may know, the LDS Church buildings and Temples don't have a cross on them. She said that this thought came to her as she was being asked and it has stayed with me ever since.
We Worship A Living Christ
I am looking forward to Easter. As a family we are preparing ourselves for a more Christ centered Easter. A living Christ centered Easter.
He was resurrected. He lives. I know it.