Friday, October 31, 2008

Cake Wrecks

My friend Kim posted a link to this on her blog and Nathan and I laughed our butts off for about 15 minutes. Go check it out! It is dang hil-ar-ious. I also have it on my list of websites I like to visit.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

And It's True.

This is basically the same post I did at my blog, but I wanted to share it here, too.

Yesterday I was at Joann’s Craft Store and when it was time to leave Megan and Jeremy decided they were cranky. I was trying to round them up and take Emma’s car seat off the cart at the same time another customer was walking over to put her cart away. Megan and Jeremy were turning circles, rotating directly in her path. I calmly asked them to rotate my way so she could put her cart away, but they were slow to listen. Emma's car seat wasn’t coming off the cart easily and I was beginning to get frustrated. The customer approached and asked my kids to move, which kind of freaked them out because all of a sudden there was this strange lady in front of them with a huge cart in their little faces. They did finally move, but I could see in the woman’s face she was sizing me up as a mother. She either thought, “Oh, that poor young mother doesn’t have a clue what she’s doing. I can’t believe she has three.” (Because apparently in this part of the country, having three kids means you’re something akin to a rabbit.) Or she was thinking, “Ugh. This stupid young mom that can’t control her own kids. Now I have to step in and help her because there’s no way she’s going to make it to her car with a truckload of children.”

Either way, she felt compelled to walk me and the kids out, all the while looking disdainfully at me because my baby had no socks on her feet (she had a thick blanket and a heavy coat covering her though) and cautioning my children to look both ways before they stepped into the parking lot. My children already know this. I’ve trained them to be so fearful of cars that every time we go down to the underground parking for our building, Jeremy peeks out the basement door, checks to see if it’s all clear, then runs to our car as fast as he can while crying out, “I’m scared of car!” or “Don’t wanna be smashed!” My children know to look both ways and just because they weren’t using their ears in the store because they were too busy spinning, doesn’t mean they needed a lecture from a complete stranger.

For a split second after this happened I felt like a bad mom. Ems didn’t have socks on. I needed to explain why she didn’t have socks on: we ran out of the apartment in a hurry. Instead of having my kids hold on to the car seat or my shirt like I usually do, I had them hold hands with each other and hold my free hand (it was quite the spectacle, I’m sure). The guilt didn’t last long, but the frustration and anger I felt for the woman who felt the need to judge me did. And I guess I’m discovering as I write this, that some of the frustration and anger is still around.

But the point is, when we got home, and out of the car, and into the basement, the kids were smiling and twirling, and laughing and being their ultra silly selves. They were happy. I love it when they are happy together. When they play together so well. I’m a good mom. My kids are happy kids who are learning and growing. My kids are loving kids who care about other people and aren’t afraid to show concern when others are sad. My kids love to laugh and I give them ample opportunities to do so. I love my kids and I’m a good mom.

My husband is a terrific husband and father. He plays with the kids every day. He has special games he plays with them and special songs he sings to them. Games and songs that mom either isn’t willing to play or songs mom can never remember the words to. He has worked hard to provide for us, and continues to work hard as he is in dental school. I love it when the kids do something cute or funny and we share a look. A look that says, “we have the cutest, most smartest, most adorable kids ever.”

And it’s true.

Dear Valued Customer

This is a sad post. Not sad as in tears, but sad as in, Oh, wow. You're a loser. So any of you who gave me coolness points for sleeping on the streets of NYC or for biting that drunk jerk, if you're going to drop my coolness rating, please don't tell me.

Like most people I feel annoyed when all I get in the mailbox is junk mail. (Although you may seriously doubt that after reading this post.) I want a letter people! Good old fashioned stamps and envelopes with paper and ink on the inside. And it must start with "Dear Kellie," instead of, "Ms. Buckner."

However, the other day (no, not the day I escaped to my mailbox, another day) there was no real mail in my little box. There was nothing. No junk mail, no real mail, nothing. I sighed as I closed the little door and walked back to the elevator. I left for the store and came back about an hour or so later. As I pulled in, I noticed the mail truck sitting in the parking lot! Yay! A second chance! Maybe I wasn't forgotten! Oh the possibilities! A pizza ad? I know there's a Dominos near. Or maybe Bed Bath and Beyond, promising me $10 off my purchase of $50. . . . Oh, I know! Maybe I was sent some personalized return address stickers with birds on them, or drawings made by kids. Anything, please!!! except a bill. anything except a bill.

Is it sad that that day I needed junk mail to make me feel good? In a way legit? I'm a person. Did I need the junk mail to tell me I am legitimately a person? A "valued customer?" Yes. It is sad. Wow. Y'all that know my address. Maybe you could toss me postcard or something. Or at least send me your old Valu-Pak.

What am I Reading Tag

I was tagged by Janelle at Nutter Stuff for a What am I reading Tag. I am reading lots o' stuff, but decided to use Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson.

Here are the Rules:
1. Get the book that's on your nightstand (or whatever you happen to be reading).
2. Open it to page 56 and find the 5th sentence.
3. Post the next couple of sentences on your blog, along with these instructions.
4. Do not go and find your favorite book; it has to be the one you are reading now!
5. Tag five other people to do the same.

So here it is:

Book: Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
Page: 56
Sentences 5-7: She could vaguely remember a time when someone back in her village had Returned. It had been nearly ten years back, and her father hadn't let her visit the man. She did recall that he'd been able to speak and interact with his family, even if he hadn't been able to remember them.


I totally forgot to tag other people. Oops. I tag Amber from Arizona Omers, Jenny from We are a Happy Family, and anyone else who wants to play along.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I am going to check the mail. I am going without any of my children. I will leave them in the apartment. Why? Because I am going INSANE right now. I need the minute and a half to myself. And I might just take another 30 seconds to read the mail before I come back in the apartment. Who knows. Maybe I'll pray that the elevator gets stuck.


I'm back. I lingered outside the door for a minute or two. My neighbor came home while I was standing there. I think he thinks I'm strange for reading the junk mail outside my apartment door instead of going inside. I tried to be as enthralled in the pizza ad as I could, but I'm not sure if he bought it or not. I decided to finally come in because I knew Mr. Darcy was about to propose to Elizabeth Bennett and since it was his second proposal and I knew she'd accept, I had to come in to see the happy moment.

Monday, October 27, 2008

In Potty News . . .

Jeremy did it! He earned his first Matchbox car for staying dry for seven days! We've been giving him fruit snacks each time he goes potty and about a week and a half ago Nathan made up a potty chart for him. Jeremy has to stay dry (meaning no pee diapers, but a poop diaper is ok) in order to put a star on the chart. At the end of seven dry days (not necessarily consecutive) he gets a Matchbox car, like he did tonight. Then his next goal is to stay dry for 6 days, then 5, 4, and so on down to one. At the end of each goal he gets a Matchbox car until we reach the last day (by which point he should be completely potty trained) when he will get a "Big Prize" which will be Diego underwear. I forgot that was supposed to be the Big Prize and already opened them and put them in his dresser, but he doesn't know this. And since I'm the only one who opens that dresser, I'm likely to be the only person in the apartment to see them until he actually earns them.

This method worked great with Megan. After she earned her Big Prize she did have a few accidents, but we cured that by telling her that the Disney Princesses on her panties didn't want her to wear them anymore because they were afraid that she would pee and poop on them. Her eyes got really big and she promised she would never have another accident again.

I'm so proud of my little Jeremy! Good job, bud!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Christmas Tag

Laura from Team Moffitt tagged me with a Christmas 2006 tag. I think the idea is really funny, so here are a few pictures from Christmas '06.

Blowing Bubbles with Grandpa Kent

Nathan with his "My Baby Got Stole. . .By A Bear Holding A Shark!! t-shirt
The shirt was a total surprise to him, thus the excited face. Usually he can guess what his presents are--that time I was successfully sneaky.

Grandma Mary helping Megan open her James Avery Craftsman bracelet from Aunt Laurie.

Grandpa Roy letting Jeremy play with his hat.

Megan eating the popcorn off of our $5 Charlie Brown Christmas tree.
(I will miss the $5 Forest this Christmas)

I tag anyone who wants to play along!

Trick or Treat

Halloween has started early this year. Thanks to the supreme kindness of two girls in my ward (Church group), I was able to finish Megan's costume before the ward party. It was supposed to be a trunk-or-treat--but it rained. So we brought everything inside the Church and used the classrooms instead of our trunks. And I am very disappointed in myself for not taking a picture of the door we decorated because it looked dang awesome. Here is a picture of a couple of the spiders I made to decorate our door.

Here is a close up of one of them. I ran out of time to do a good job on it, but I mod podged it with some funky Halloween material and scraps from Megan's Halloween costume last year. You can kind of see where I ran out of time because there are those white spots. I'll fix them--one day.

Beside the trick or treating, the ward had chili, cider, and a costume contest. There were about 50 kids there and only 6 prizes and guess what!

Jeremy's costume won "Most Humorous"!

We were so excited for him. He got a ribbon and a little trophy. It figures that his costume would win a prize and not Megan's though.

His costume consisted of:
1. a jacket he already owned
2. a pair of jeans I bought at a thrift store that Nathan sewed patches onto
3. an old felt paperboy style hat of mine from high school
4. a five dollar flannel shirt from Wal-Mart
5. and eyeliner

Since I don't wear much makeup, I did have to buy the eyeliner. So. Do you want to know what he was?

A hobo. Yes, my son dressed up as a hobo. A homeless man. Nathan thought it was hilarious. This is how I got him to agree to let me have free reign with Megan's costume, which wasn't as economically kind to our budget.

Oh! I almost forgot the most important part. As we were driving home from Wal-Mart (to pick up the flannel shirt and eyeliner) I turned into the parking lot of a synagogue. I have no idea really what religion worships there, but they had a very pretty wooded area in front and I needed a long stick. I didn't want to go to Lowe's and buy a dowl, so I hopped out of the car, found a good stick that's about three and a half feet tall and took it. I dropped it right into the car's trunk and drove off. I really hope they don't have amazing security cameras focused on the trees that zoomed in on my license plate as I was driving away with their stick. That would be stupid. Anyway, Nathan turned this stick into a delightful prop for Jeremy. A little hobo sack.

Megan's costume, as I said earlier, wasn't cheap. Or easy. Every year I tell myself, next year I'm going to do something simple, and then I don't do it. (Next year she's going as a ghost with a white sheet and two holes for her eyes.) Me and my mediocre sewing skills suffered many late nights with her dress. Luckily, I didn't have to make anything other than the dress. Thanks to Joann's Crafts and Target, Megan had all the necessary accessories.

Megan's Costume Stats:
1. dress + 50 mom hours on the sewing machine
2. dress up shoes with heels (which she amazingly learned how to walk in very quickly)
3. Fancy Nancy purse
4. Fancy Nancy earrings
5. Fancy Nancy crown
6. Fancy Nancy sunglasses
7. feather boa
8. random necklaces and bracelets
9. butterfly
10. curlers for hair
11. mom's vintage gloves

Just in case you didn't catch on from numbers 3-6 on the list, can you guess who she is?

Fancy Nancy

Fancy Nancy always has a butterfly in her hair, so I picked one up at Michale's Arts and Crafts and clipped it to her Fancy Nancy crown.

Emma was me as a baby. This little groovy number was mine when I was a precious little baby.

Of course, after Granpa Kent saw this picture,he said she looked more like a Cupi Doll. So when we went to another Halloween party put on by CADA (I have no idea what it stands for, but it's the dental school's thingy/club/let's be lonely together because our husbands/wives live at the school and we never see them anymore and let's hand out toothbrushes to elementary school kids support group for student spouses. Got it?) We added another element to the costume (besides the different outfit because she totally pooped on the other one).

The eyeliner came in handy again! Nathan drew the little Cupi Doll curl so it would look more like a costume than just a really cool vintage outfit. Next time she wears it (minus the eyeliner curl), she'll just look like she's really hip.

Here are a couple pictures from the CADA party.

It was carnival style, so there were lots of games. Here, Jeremy didn't quite know what to do with the neon green vampire teeth and didn't really want to put them in his mouth.

So all in all it was a ton of fun this weekend and we're looking forward to doing it all over again on Friday. It's a good thing Megan's costume is getting so much wear, because DANG IT! I worked hard on that dress!!!!!!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ornery American Blog

I decided to put this on my blog in its entirety because Scott wants it in as many places
as possible. I don't know how much of my political opinion y'all know--it can't be much
because I'm still figuring parts of it out--but I thought this article to be extremely
informative and important. Scott is of course an amazing writer, teacher, and orator,
and I respect him greatly. I've read many an article of his and almost always find
myself agreeing with him on every point he makes.

By Orson Scott Card

October 5, 2008

Would the Last Honest Reporter Please Turn On the Lights?

An open letter to the local daily paper -- almost every local daily paper in America:

I remember reading All the President's Men and thinking: That's journalism. You do what it takes to get the truth and you lay it before the public, because the public has a right to know.

This housing crisis didn't come out of nowhere. It was not a vague emanation of the evil Bush administration.

It was a direct result of the political decision, back in the late 1990s, to loosen the rules of lending so that home loans would be more accessible to poor people. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were authorized to approve risky loans.

What is a risky loan? It's a loan that the recipient is likely not to be able to repay.

The goal of this rule change was to help the poor -- which especially would help members of minority groups. But how does it help these people to give them a loan that they can't repay? They get into a house, yes, but when they can't make the payments, they lose the house -- along with their credit rating.

They end up worse off than before.

This was completely foreseeable and in fact many people did foresee it. One political party, in Congress and in the executive branch, tried repeatedly to tighten up the rules. The other party blocked every such attempt and tried to loosen them.

Furthermore, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae were making political contributions to the very members of Congress who were allowing them to make irresponsible loans. (Though why quasi-federal agencies were allowed to do so baffles me. It's as if the Pentagon were allowed to contribute to the political campaigns of Congressmen who support increasing their budget.)

Isn't there a story here? Doesn't journalism require that you who produce our daily paper tell the truth about who brought us to a position where the only way to keep confidence in our economy was a $700 billion bailout? Aren't you supposed to follow the money and see which politicians were benefitting personally from the deregulation of mortgage lending?

I have no doubt that if these facts had pointed to the Republican Party or to John McCain as the guilty parties, you would be treating it as a vast scandal. "Housing-gate," no doubt. Or "Fannie-gate."

Instead, it was Senator Christopher Dodd and Congressman Barney Frank, both Democrats, who denied that there were any problems, who refused Bush administration requests to set up a regulatory agency to watch over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and who were still pushing for these agencies to go even further in promoting subprime mortgage loans almost up to the minute they failed.

As Thomas Sowell points out in a essay entitled Do Facts Matter? "Alan Greenspan warned them four years ago. So did the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers to the President. So did Bush's Secretary of the Treasury."

These are facts. This financial crisis was completely preventable. The party that blocked any attempt to prevent it was ... the Democratic Party. The party that tried to prevent it was ... the Republican Party.

Yet when Nancy Pelosi accused the Bush administration and Republican deregulation of causing the crisis, you in the press did not hold her to account for her lie. Instead, you criticized Republicans who took offense at this lie and refused to vote for the bailout!

What? It's not the liar, but the victims of the lie who are to blame?

Now let's follow the money ... right to the presidential candidate who is the number-two recipient of campaign contributions from Fannie Mae.

And after Freddie Raines, the CEO of Fannie Mae who made $90 million while running it into the ground, was fired for his incompetence, one presidential candidate's campaign actually consulted him for advice on housing.

If that presidential candidate had been John McCain, you would have called it a major scandal and we would be getting stories in your paper every day about how incompetent and corrupt he was.

But instead, that candidate was Barack Obama, and so you have buried this story, and when the McCain campaign dared to call Raines an "adviser" to the Obama campaign -- because that campaign had sought his advice -- you actually let Obama's people get away with accusing McCain of lying, merely because Raines wasn't listed as an official adviser to the Obama campaign.

You would never tolerate such weasely nit-picking from a Republican.

If you who produce our local daily paper actually had any principles, you would be pounding this story, because the prosperity of all Americans was put at risk by the foolish, short-sighted, politically selfish, and possibly corrupt actions of leading Democrats, including Obama.

If you who produce our local daily paper had any personal honor, you would find it unbearable to let the American people believe that somehow Republicans were to blame for this crisis.

There are precedents. Even though President Bush and his administration never said that Iraq sponsored or was linked to 9/11, you could not stand the fact that Americans had that misapprehension -- so you pounded us with the fact that there was no such link. (Along the way, you created the false impression that Bush had lied to them and said that there was a connection.)

If you had any principles, then surely right now, when the American people are set to blame President Bush and John McCain for a crisis they tried to prevent, and are actually shifting to approve of Barack Obama because of a crisis he helped cause, you would be laboring at least as hard to correct that false impression.

Your job, as journalists, is to tell the truth. That's what you claim you do, when you accept people's money to buy or subscribe to your paper.

But right now, you are consenting to or actively promoting a big fat lie -- that the housing crisis should somehow be blamed on Bush, McCain, and the Republicans. You have trained the American people to blame everything bad -- even bad weather -- on Bush, and they are responding as you have taught them to.

If you had any personal honor, each reporter and editor would be insisting on telling the truth -- even if it hurts the election chances of your favorite candidate.

Because that's what honorable people do. Honest people tell the truth even when they don't like the probable consequences. That's what honesty means. That's how trust is earned.

Barack Obama is just another politician, and not a very wise one. He has revealed his ignorance and naivete time after time -- and you have swept it under the rug, treated it as nothing.

Meanwhile, you have participated in the borking of Sarah Palin, reporting savage attacks on her for the pregnancy of her unmarried daughter -- while you ignored the story of John Edwards's own adultery for many months.

So I ask you now: Do you have any standards at all? Do you even know what honesty means?

Is getting people to vote for Barack Obama so important that you will throw away everything that journalism is supposed to stand for?

You might want to remember the way the National Organization of Women threw away their integrity by supporting Bill Clinton despite his well-known pattern of sexual exploitation of powerless women. Who listens to NOW anymore? We know they stand for nothing; they have no principles.

That's where you are right now.

It's not too late. You know that if the situation were reversed, and the truth would damage McCain and help Obama, you would be moving heaven and earth to get the true story out there.

If you want to redeem your honor, you will swallow hard and make a list of all the stories you would print if it were McCain who had been getting money from Fannie Mae, McCain whose campaign had consulted with its discredited former CEO, McCain who had voted against tightening its lending practices.

Then you will print them, even though every one of those true stories will point the finger of blame at the reckless Democratic Party, which put our nation's prosperity at risk so they could feel good about helping the poor, and lay a fair share of the blame at Obama's door.

You will also tell the truth about John McCain: that he tried, as a Senator, to do what it took to prevent this crisis. You will tell the truth about President Bush: that his administration tried more than once to get Congress to regulate lending in a responsible way.

This was a Congress-caused crisis, beginning during the Clinton administration, with Democrats leading the way into the crisis and blocking every effort to get out of it in a timely fashion.

If you at our local daily newspaper continue to let Americans believe --and vote as if -- President Bush and the Republicans caused the crisis, then you are joining in that lie.

If you do not tell the truth about the Democrats -- including Barack Obama -- and do so with the same energy you would use if the miscreants were Republicans -- then you are not journalists by any standard.

You're just the public relations machine of the Democratic Party, and it's time you were all fired and real journalists brought in, so that we can actually have a daily newspaper in our city.

The City of Ember

The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau is a fantastic novel and apocalyptic in nature. DuPrau's writing style easily drew me in as she described things as simple as the metal band that holds a pencil's eraser or as beautiful and common as a blue sky. Ember is an underground city, though the people who live there don't know this. It is thought to be the last surviving city, created as a safe haven by "the Builders" and was in actuallity created so that mankind wouldn't be wiped out if something did happen, such as nuclear war.

The story focuses on a young girl, Lina Mayfleet, and her friend, Doon Harrow. After Lina finds a mysterious document they decide to look for a way out of the city. They recognize that their city will not last as many supplies are running low, including lightbulbs, food, and medicine. The cliffhanger at the end made me want to run to the library and check out the next book, The People of Spark.

Some authors I find spend too much time on description, going into full detail of each leaf on each tree, DuPrau has mastered description. She knows just how much to give without detracting from the story. She also has a great talent for creating mystery-filled, exciting stories.

This book is listed as a middle grade level, but I would consider it Young Adult level. While the level of reading isn't difficult, it does deal with serious and difficult situations which in my opinion, has carried the book further into the Y.A. readership. It has also won the Mark Twain Award.

Watercolor Portrait Contest

Over at Sitting Pretty Studio Zana is offering a FREE watercolor portrait from a photograph of a child or infant. Go enter your name in the contest! Her work is amazing and has kind of a vintageness (is that even a word?) to it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My Search for Chutney

Never, repeat, never go to Wal-Mart if you need chutney. The employees do not know what it is or where to find it.

Yesterday I got a new issue of a wonderful cooking magazine that my mom-in-law has been so gracious to get me. I look forward to each new issue because when I look through it I actually feel like cooking. And for those of you who read the tags post, you must know that isn't often since I stated that "I hate to cook." Because really, I do. But when I get this magazine in the mail I get so excited looking at the tasty food that looks so easy to make. One of the recipes was a yummy potato and kielbasa skillet which I insisted on trying. Another was a tortillini dish. And then there was a side of carrots which looked scrumptious.

It was the carrots that got me at the store. They called for Mango Chutney. I've never bought chutney before, but judging from it's name, specifically the mango part, told me it might be a jelly-like substance.

Still with this possible understanding I wasn't sure what it was or where to find it. I stopped an employee and asked.

Me: Excuse me, I have a question. Do you know where I could find chutney?
Not-Quite-There Employee: Uhhh. [scratches head, jaw slack, eyes glazed] No. I don't know what that is.
Me: Right. Ok. [backing away slowly] Thanks.

Then I asked a manager. Get this, the MANAGER!

Manager: What is that? Chutney? No. I don't think we have that. If we do it would be in the produce.

Me: [Produce? Is he kidding?] Uh. Ok. I'll check there. [walk away]

Manager: I'll come with you.

Me: [Crap]

So the manager asked a produce employee who so brilliantly said, "No, we don't carry chutney."

About five minutes later in the frozen foods section, Produce Guy: Hey, I was thinking about the chutney. I was thinking that you could just mix some spices. You know, like get some mango spice and some chutney spice and just mix them up."

Me: I didn't think of that.

Yeah. You want to know why I didn't think of that? Because there's no such thing as mango or chutney spice!! It is a JELLY-LIKE substance! So all y'all at Wal-Mart (I know there's a couple of you who check this blog once in a while) if anyone asks where the chutney is or if you sell it, please do not advise them to mix mango spice and chutney spice together.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Tagging Fun

Jess at Our Awesome Life tagged me with two different tags. I love these things, they are so fun!

The Rules for playing TAG:

*Link to the person who tagged you
*Post the rules on your blog
*Write six random things about yourself
*Tag six-ish people at the end of your post
*Let each person know he/she has been tagged
*Let the tagger know when your entry is up

1. I sing all the time. Like all the time. When I met my sister's husband for the first time I must have been listening to the radio or something (I stand by the possibility that there could have been a perfectly legitimate reason for me to sing and that anyone in my situation probably would have burst into song as well. Such as a radio playing or a movie with good music on T.V., or something in the general vicinity that reminded me of a good song, or a song being stuck in my head, or having just heard a song half an hour ago--something!) Anyway, one of the first things he said was in a slightly hushed tone to my sister, "You're right. She does sing a lot."

2. I don't sleep. I just lay on the bed with my eyes closed and my body tense, waiting for the first child to wake up and walk bleary-eyed into my room.

3. I miss going to school and learning in a classroom environment.

4. I just read a great book called The City of Ember. I'll do a book review on it tomorrow.

5. I hate to cook. Hate it. Did I mention that cooking isn't really my thing?

6. At Ricks College I once took toilet paper from the lounge bathroom because our apartment was out of t.p.

I tag Kim, Katie, Sarah, Jerie, and Janelle

The other tag is 3 embarrassing moments. Jess, you knew I was perfect for this one, huh? It's a good thing I have such a never-ending supply of these!

1. I once went to school without pants on.
2. My period started and I wasn't prepared when I was in . . . let's see, should I give you the band story, the primary story, or the Stake Conference with Nathan's family story. . . .?
3. I once threw up in front of a total stranger and she had to hold my hair back for me so it wouldn't get in the nastiness. My Spanish teacher then had to take me home from class. The next day she made a big deal about it in front of my entire class, who had already seen me turn four shades of green and then pasty white. Luckily they missed the actual puking since it happened when class was over. That's why it was a complete stranger I threw up in front of. She came into the room for her class after my classmates left. After I barfed my teacher came back in the room with her car keys and my teacher and this girl walked me out to the car, past all the students in the hallway who were told not to enter their classroom because a girl was throwing up in there.

I tag everyone! Specifically: Laura, Amber O., and Merrianne! I really want to see y'alls' answers!

The Halloween Cat's Meow

Look what I just made! I found the recipe here.
Obviously mine don't look as good as the professionals, but I'm still pretty dang pleased with myself. I just put some of the leftover dough in the fridge,
in hopes of making it easier to work with.

Merrianne, as I was making the kitty cookies I couldn't help but think of your cute Halloween costume! If I thought they'd survive the trip, I'd mail some to you!

Road Trip!

This weekend we decided to take a road trip to Pittsburgh. For some reason we love to punish ourselves with long road trips and three cranky kids. for this road trip there were two things on our agenda.

Ikea and leaves.

We accomplished both.

So much prettier than Cleveland. I mean, there are pretty parts of Ohio with the leaves changing, but this is just gorgeous!

Jeremy making a sweet face while I'm trying to sooth Emma.
She'd been in her carseat a l-o-n-g time by this point.

Megan doing her typical, princess-tilting-head-to-the-side pose. With Oreos on her mouth, too.

The trip was fun. We ended up getting some Christmas presents for the kids as well as the dresser we wanted. I love Ikea. It is just so much fun! There was a Toys R Us next to it, so Nathan took Jeremy there while I took Megan back in Ikea to play at the children's area. While she played I checked out some of the cute kitchen ware. Found my future china!

New Quote Monday

This week's quote is another Ashleigh Brilliant quote, again from a Demotivator. The man is, well, Brilliant.

"Much work remains to be done before we can announce our total failure to make any progress."

This quote reminds me of any typical day of mine. So busy, yet nothing gets accomplished.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

It's Autumn

I guess I'm not the only one missing the
warm summer weather!

If you couldn't tell, the bean bag pillow is the "swimming pool" and they are diving into it. They've been doing this for days now. While Autumn is pretty, it is also depressing because it means Winter is on its way. Sad.

P.S. check out Megan's foot in the last action shot there. She has the belt I made her on her ankle. The kids were pretending she was a dog and that was her leash. They had it around her neck and when I told them they couldn't have it there, they took it off her neck and put it on her ankle. Too cute!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Join in the Discussion

For the rest of this week and part of next week on my blog, the family, I'm covering difficult topics with children, such as sex, modesty, drugs, smoking and drinking, language, death, etc.

I'd appreciate any comments or ideas you have on teaching children about values and standards, any experiences you've had with your own kids, or if you disagree with me, let me know that, too. But I think most of you will agree with what I've written and will continue to write on the subject.

For any readers who aren't LDS, I'm really interested in your thoughts and how you've taught your kids (or plan to teach your kids) about these topics. So please, go to the blog and let's talk about it!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Quilt Giveaway!

No, not me. I'm not that generous or talented. This is a seriously beautiful quilt. You can enter by going here and leave a comment. The blog is called Pigtails and Snails and is a really cute blog. So go check her out!

Book Review-Left To Tell

A while back I decided to do book reviews because I tend to read a lot. Books take me out of the ordinary day to day life and, well. Let's face it. Every mom needs to get out of the ordinary day to day life once in a while. I've read a ton of books since deciding to do a book review, but just haven't gotten around to actually doing it yet. So here goes my first. We'll see if I can keep it up.

The first book I'm reviewing didn't actually take me anywhere I wanted to be (as in away from ordinary life) because as I read it, I kind of wished I could just wake my kids up and hug them and kiss them and make them play with me.

The book I read is Left to Tell by Immaculée Ilibagiza. It tells the story of Imaculée, one of the very few survivors of the Rwandan genocide, and how she truly found God as she hid with seven other women in a tiny bathroom.

As I read this book I was brought to tears multiple times for multiple reasons. The intense hatred of the Hutus, the Rwandan tribe which began the genocide, for the Tutsis (the Rwandan tribe Imaculée belonged to) is something I can't understand. As I read her words I simply couldn't believe that human beings could be so cruel to one another. I was a history major and spent an entire semester doing independent study on WWII. I know all about the Nazi's and the holocaust in Germany, the propaganda they used, rampant mind control, and fear tactics, but the holocaust in Rwanda was on a completely different level.

Some of the times I cried were because I felt so infereior to Imaculée. She is amazingly close to Heavenly Father, knows His will for her, and in my opinion, has the faith to walk on water or move the Uinta mountains. As I read about her relationship with God and her complete trust in Him I couldn't help but think about all the things I should be doing more often and more fully to have a better relationship with God.

Left to Tell is an extremely well-written, thought provoking, emotional book. Be forwarned. There is graphic dialog. Not as in swearing, but as in the violence. Something that caught me off guard was Imaculée's friends and neighbors tell her in great detail how each of her family members died. They are all gruesome and violent. If you can't handle that, then be aware that she describes many murders of various people of various ages. It is sad, it is horrible, it is non-fiction. It really happened and isn't something we can ignore, which is something most countries tried to do when the holocaust was actually happening there.

I highly recommend this book to EVERYONE. Yes it is sad, but it is also the most uplifting book I've read this year (only The Book of Mormon could beat it). I read it because it was the book club book for our Relief Society this month and to be honest, I didn't want to read it at first. I don't usually read non-fiction. (I have enough real life everyday, thank you. I don't usually want more when it is time to relax.) But as I started to read it I couldn't put it down and now I really would love to meet Imaculée. She does conferences and lectures and at the website (the link is above) you can find if she'll be close to your area.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Perfect Baby

I just have to say that I have the happiest, funniest, most wonderful, perfect, and amazing baby ever. Right this minute she is laughing her head off as Nathan pretends to eat her. Usually all we have to do is look at her to send her into hysterics. It is a great blessing having her in our home. She loves to give us kisses and I just love when she reaches her little arms up to me. I love going into her room when she's woken up in the morning or after a nap and seeing her smiling, happy face.

I love you Emma!

Apple Picking (Again) and More Fun

Grandma Mary and Amber requested pictures, so here they are!

Jeremy saw me with a towel on my head after a shower
and then asked for one when he got out of the bath.

We went apple picking at Patterson's Farm. Megan sneaked up a tree to get some of the apples because they were all too high for her to reach.

Sharing Apples

Emma gets to just hang out. Lucky girl.

Megan really wanted to try out this swing. She was just all kinds of excited about it.

By this point in the day the kids were all really tired and getting them to smile wasn't easy.

This was a gorgeous lake they had on the farm. The trees around it were all changing and it was just really relaxing to be there and sit by it while Megan and Jeremy looked for flowers and weeds to throw into the lake. Of course, very little of what they threw actually ended up in the lake because of a breeze that was going toward us, blowing everything back in their faces.

Here's a primitive stitch I did for our neighbor.
(This is a really random post filled with all kinds of stuff, sorry.)

On a rainy day we decorated cupcakes for Halloween. I know it's a bit early, but I really wanted cupcakes. We invited a couple kids in our ward to decorate them with us. Most of the cupcakes were eaten before the icing or sprinkles even made it to the table!

The other day Jeremy decided (or Megan talked him into it) to wear Megan's pajama top. They called it his school coat. Apparently he is ready to go to school only if he is wearing it. Here I think he's actually wearing the bottoms, too. This surprises me because I didn't think he had enough waist to keep them up.

Megan kept insisting that Jeremy go to school, so eventually I played teacher with
them and did a math lesson and a geography lesson.

So as you can see we are having fun and being busy. Now I am off to work on Megan's Halloween costume.