Sunday, October 31, 2010

This is Halloween, This is Halloween

*Photocredit goes to Brynlee*
Hope your Halloween was spooky.  And that you were able to sneak a fair share of mini candy bars out of your lil' one's goodie bags.  And that your kids suffered from a sugar induced coma and fell asleep at about 7:30 tonight.  If only, right?

And also, Happy Halloween from our

r e d

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Oh My Quotable Wednesday: Big Sister

I planned on posting the Oh My Quotable Wednesday post on, you know, Wednesday. But blogger wouldn't let me.

Well, in all fairness, it would let me. It just auto corrected my picture every.single.time turning it sideways for me. Thank you very much, Mr. Computer, you big FAT know it all. But as it turns out I didn't really want the picture to be turned sideways.  Go figure.

So in an effort to solve all the sideways problems, I went to bed.

And it helped.

And then this morning, I turned the pictures sideways prior to uploading it to blogger. Then when blogger auto-fixed it for me . . . TAADAA! right side up.

I really am half, one quarter, one-eighth genius.

Happy Thursday, my friends. 

 There's actually a purpose to Oh My Quotable Wednesday
And I'll share it with you.
Possibly after all my chores are done. 
She says as she takes some cold medicine
and glances over at the kitchen full of day old dirty dishes,
feeling thankful that she can't actually smell {or breathe} out of her nose.

Monday, October 25, 2010

I’m Gonna Like Me

I'm gonna like me when I roll out of bed,
From my ugly square feet,
to my wild bed head.

I'm gonna like me when my fat pants are tight.
When not an item in my closet
seems to fit me just right.

I'm gonna like me when I'm on top of my game.
When I wear lipstick, when I'm witty,
when I'm the far opposite of lame.

I'm gonna like me when I forget about the van's hatch
then close the garage door
leaving our swagger wagon's backside all scratched.

I'm gonna like me when I laugh really loud.
And sound less like a human,
and more like a clown.

I'm gonna like me when I'm the "World's Best Mom".
When we dance in the toy room
and the kids think I'm da'bomb.

I'm gonna like me when I have one of those days.
When I'm impatient. Inadequate.
And wish my worries away.

I'm gonna like me when I'm a good friend.
When I send a card, make a phone call.
When I'm there 'till the end.

I'm gonna like me when we happen to lose touch,
because even if not talking
I think of them much.

I'm gonna like me when I've reason to be proud.
When I've done a good job,
when the cheering gets loud.

I'm gonna like me when I land flat on my face.
When I stumble,
and I struggle to even finish the race.

I'm gonna like me when I speak outta turn.
When I share when I shouldn't.
Someday. I'll learn.

I'm gonna like me when I rock as a wife.
Supportive. Flirty.    
A companion for life.

I'm gonna like me when we don't see eye to eye.
When there's a misunderstanding,
or only a 50% try.

I'm gonna like me when the dinner's so gross
that we set it aside
and eat cereal or toast.

I'm gonna like me when my best's not that good.
When no matter how hard I try
it's just not as it should.

I'm gonna like me at the end of the day.
When I put on pajamas, take off make-up,
and kneel down to pray.

"I'm gonna like me because I'm loved and I know it
and liking myself
is the best way to show it."

"I'm gonna like me
I already do!
But enough about me.
How about you?"

I'm gonna like YOU
in sunshine and rain.
So I recommend that
you like you too!

Blog idea comes  from the children’s book
“I’m Gonna Like Me” by Jamie Lee Curtis & Laura Cornell.
Have you read it? If not, I suggest you do.
It’s one of our favorites.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Ancient Chinese Proverb

Child given bowl of cornstarch and water, busy for afternoon.

And because even ancient proverbs need pictures.
Us at corn maze.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

Because I love to tell ya’ll stuff.

Can I tell you a few things about my little sister Katie?

Well. . . she's our roommate. Sleeps in the bedroom at the very end of the hall. But she's seldom ever home. She's an English major. And won't hesitate in correcting your grammar mid-conversation. She can write a well written paper in record time. And can read an entire book in an evening. Yet, she doesn't know how to spell Mississippi. Just sayin', Kate. She covers her ears and pretends not to listen if ever she thinks that my sisters or I have shared too much information. {Which seldom happens, mind you.} She always looks like she just stepped out of a fashion magazine. Yet she shops at the Goodwill, almost exclusively. And she's proud. She sleeps with earplugs in. And, when she doesn't have class, occasionally forgets to wake up until noon. She likes Ramen Noodles. And Mountain Dew. Although she's currently on a no caffeine diet. She does that occasionally. But then she gives in. And she and Mountain Dew are reunited once again. She's watched all the episodes of "Friends" more times than is considered healthy. She hates when you ask her too many questions. And doesn't like to be center of attention. She a hard worker. And quite charming. And she always has a vase of fresh flowers in her bedroom. Fresh flowers from Jake.

Can I tell you a few things about Jake?

Well. . . he's humorous. And energetic. And my kids think the world of him. In fact, I think all kids do. He's just got one of those personalities. Fun-loving. Playful. Entertaining. He loves those little flavored tootsie rolls. And usually has a pocket full to share. He ate lunch at Quiznos every single day for a long time. And then Quiznos closed in our town. And now I don't know where he eats lunch. He speaks Spanish. And served a Spanish speaking mission. In California, I believe. He graduated from the same high school that Spence graduated from. Except for, a few years later. He works at a restaurant. And brings rolls with cinnamon butter to our house upon request. He cracks me up. And he's fun to hang out with. He's patient. He doesn't give up easily. Because sometimes good things are worth waiting around for. Even ask him.

Can I tell you a few things about Katie and Jake?

Well. . . they like each other. A lot. And their names sound good together. Kate and Jake. Wouldn't you agree? He bought Katie a sparkly ring. And she said yes. And now they're going to get married. And they can't wait.

And neither can I. Congrats Kate and Jake. We are super excited for the two of you. Love you guys!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Pumpkins 2010

On Monday we painted pumpkins. Here's the hard evidence:

Spence's Patrick Star Pumpkin:

Brynlee's White Ghost Pumpkin:

My Trick or "Tweet" Pumpkin:

Jace's Splatter Pumpkin:

I love fall. I love traditions. I love my family.

Speaking of family, my sisters are here.

We stayed up until the very early morning hours: planning, looking at old pictures, and discussing all manner of highly educated and important topics.  My house is screaming with children and the couches are full of exhausted mothers.  It's starting to feel like holiday time.   And I love it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Dear Jace: On your second birthday


As much as I feel inclined to start this letter in the cliché "how can you be getting so big so fast" manner. . . I'm going to try to refrain myself. As much as I want to reminisce about how I use to snuggle your tiny newborn head between my shoulder and my face. . . I won't. And although I feel the need to tell you that I haven't the slightest clue as to when you got big enough to talk and color and wrestle {and throw tantrums}. . . I'm not going to allow myself. Instead I'm going to focus on the part of you that makes me the absolute happiest right now. The two-year-old you, the big boy you, the you that I love so much. And although it's true, I can't believe you're getting so big so fast, I also would never be willing to trade my time with you, at this age, for anything. Even a littler model. Because you're two, and although I can't believe it, I love it!

Right now, as I type, you and I are sharing fruit loops. Malt o' meal straight out of the bag. I'm sitting criss-cross-applesauce on a barstool and you, still in your footie pajamas, on the counter. You carefully pick a fruit loop for yourself, then without hesitation grab a chubby two-year-old handful for me. I continue typing while you stuff my face with fruit loops, most of which land on my lap or on the floor or on the barstool. But you don't care. And neither do I.

Oh my goodness, Jace, you are such a fun kid. Our lives have been so sweetly blessed by you joining our little family. You're definitely where you belong. And I can't get enough of you. No matter how much I try I can't get enough of your kisses; you lean in close, lips almost touching my cheek, then make kissing noises. Adorable. And the way you say thank-you. Dank-ouu. And in the cutest little boy voice. Melts my heart. And you're little blonde head and your blue eyes that sparkle the same shade as Grandpa's. All of you, I can't get enough of it.

And although sister complains sometimes about Jace Buddy doing this or Buddy doing that, she is protective of her little brother as a mother bear of her baby cubs. Today when we dropped her off at preschool she gave me a kiss then ran back to your seat and gave you a kiss. She grabbed her backpack, headed out the van door, then changed her mind and came back and gave you one more kiss before she left. And as much as she loves you and protects you, I think you idolize her even more. You copy e.very.thing your sister does. Everything. You copy what she says, how she sits, what she wants to eat. You're her shadow. Her echo. Her sidekick. Where there's a Brynlee, there's a buddy.

And you and your dad, Jace. I love it. I'm sitting here trying to put into words your relationship. Cool? Beautiful {in a very manly way, of course}? Loving? Perfection? It's a bond that only a father and a son can share. It's different than your and my bond. And different still from dad and Brynlee's bond. I overheard dad telling you the other day that he can't wait until your old enough to go watch all the "boy movies" with him. We're going to watch them all, he said, every single good boy movie ever made. And you will, I don't doubt that. But for now you two wrestle, you "punch", he gives you horsie back rides, sometimes you cry when dad has to leave for work, and you are always the first one to greet him when he walks in the door again. I think you and dad will always have that bond. You're so much alike, made for each other, the perfect father and son team.

We went to your two year doctor appointment last week. You weighed 28.4 pounds {50%} and were 36 inches tall {79%}. You hate nursery. Love naptime. And wrestling. You live for hotdogs. And squeal when daddy gets home from work. You call 'jumping on the tramp' bonka bonka and love to pretend you're a dog. You call yourself "buddy" and say "no, I'm buddy" if anyone ever tries to correct you. Your dad calls your uncontrolled laughter your "fat boy laugh" and we hear it often. You wear 3T clothes and size 7 shoes. You think your sister is hilarious and you copy her every move. You love outside. And every.single.time you're given the opportunity to purchase a treat you pick a pink sucker and a blue laffy taffy. You know your colors. Orange, pink and black are your favorites to spot. Pink was the first color you learned, thanks to your big sister. And for a while you called the color white, milk. You've discovered a new found love for trains and have recently become obsessed with your mega-blocks. You adore you're Aunt Maire and jumping on/off furniture. You hate haircuts and getting your teeth brushed. You know all the characters on Spongebob by name. You have beautiful eyes and the cutest little raspy voice. And your run makes my heart skip. You sleep with your "yahyah"{silky: which is actually a small piece of my undershirt} and your "more"{sippy cup}. And you make us all so very happy.

Happy second year, little buddy. I love you forever and ever. And then some.


Monday, October 11, 2010

He's like a walking Disneyland


Sometimes we walk down to the school by our house. And then you beg dad to pick you up and hang you from the soccer goal post. And he does, because he's your dad, and that's what your dad does. Once you're {somewhat} securely hung dad let's go of you and you white knuckle it until you can't hang on any longer. And then, without warning, you drop. Mom says a quick prayer takes a picture. And then at some point between letting go and landing dad catches you.

And then it's the next persons turn. Turn after turn, same routine, over and over again. Because things like that never ever get old.

Well, for you.

Eventually dad makes up some excuse about how his legs aren't working anymore. Or how he lost his real arm {back in the war} and how his artificial replacement arm tires easily. Or how you can only do it one.more.time or the posts are going to completely engulf in flames. He saw it on a movie one time. No kidding.

And then your eyes immediately turn to me for reassurance. "No sir, huh mom?" Because that's what you always do when dad starts with his story telling.

You two have the coolest dad. Ever.  I hope you know that.

Loves forever,

Sunday, October 10, 2010

An inadequate post.

Dad's farm at sunset.
I've felt so inadequate lately. I wish I could explain it. I've tried. But I just can't seem to pinpoint the exact reason for the massive serving of inadequacy garnished with even more inadequacy, and then served on white paper plates that are obviously inadequate for such an occasion.

Inadequacy is something that my mind usually doesn't bother itself with. I mean, I'm usually more bothered by the excessive side of the scale. I talk really loud, speak before I think, share more than anyone bargained for and interrupt more often than commercial breaks on the season opener of American Idol. I'm not saying that inadequacy isn't something that I struggle with, because HEAVEN HELP ME. {Don't tell anyone, but I don't even have an etsy shop or a photog business or make all my old shirts into perfectly sewn little dresses for my stylish daughter, and I'm not even going to tell you how much money I DIDN'T SAVE due to my inadequate ability to clip and organize coupons.} I'm just saying that I'm the proud owner of plenty other personality quirks that seem to trump the feeling of inadequacy.

But lately my inadequacy has all but consumed me.

You call yourself a good mom, Kim. {evil chuckle} Good moms don't forget about the laundry and allow it to mold in the washer until one starts to wonder what died. Good moms don't allow their boys to eat a solely hotdog diet for SIX DAYS IN A ROW. Seriously Kim, would you get it together. When was the last time you exercised, huh? Or read a book? You need to pay more attention to the needs of others, Kim. Be more aware. And your hair. Oh sweetie, your hair looks horrendous. Would you learn how to properly apply make-up, Kim. P.S. you need a new wardrobe. You are so inadequate. Sigh.

Most of the time my extreme optimism is able to ward off any feelings of inadequacies.

So what the kid hasn't eaten anything but hotdogs for a week. Every hotdog slice is saturated in ketchup before entering his mouth. So it's actually like he's eating tomatoes. By the truckload! And no biggie that the same load of laundry as been 'resting' in the washer since last Tuesday. The clothes were stained. They needed that extra soaking time.

And usually what I can't fight with the glass half-full scenario I'm able to overlook as something that I'm working on, something that I'm trying to improve, the whole "I'll do better next time" thing.

But lately I've been acutely aware of me and all my inadequacies. They've been starring me straight in the face begging for my surrender; taunting me to admit failure, to throw in the towel, to acknowledge an inadequate defeat.

It's not my inadequacies as a mother, or a wife, or a housekeeper, or a friend that seem to be getting the best of me. Although, no kidding, those inadequacies are as numerous as wedding announcements on the BYU campus.

What's really bothering me is the inadequacy that I've been feeling in my church calling. I'm the Laurel advisor, I teach the 16-18 year old girls.

This isn't my first time having this calling; I've had a calling in the Young Women's for the majority of my married years. In fact in the seven years I've been married, I've held almost every calling available in the Young Women's program. I love the Young Women's program. I love the lessons, I love the weekly "mutual" activities, I love girl's camp and I love being involved with the youth in the ward. I'm comfortable there, and never ever before {not even as Young Women's President} have I felt inadequate.

But for some reason the last few months have been different. Maybe I haven't spent enough time preparing. Or haven't started early enough. Maybe it's because of the group of girls that I have in my class right now. Or maybe just one or two of the girls. Maybe because I don't prepare a tablescape with every lesson {gasp}. Maybe it's because I can name 85 people in the ward that would be much better in the calling. Maybe because I get too excited when I teach: talk to fast, to loud, repeat myself. Maybe because I have young children and a husband that I would much rather spend my time with. Maybe it's none of the above. Or maybe a mix of all of the above.

But whatever it is . . . it's a battle, of sorts, that I fight every Sunday evening. That overwhelming feeling of inadequacy. 

And somehow, I'm not sure how yet, but somehow I'm going to overcome it. Any ideas?

Spence and I just heard strange noises outside and we went to check it out.
Err, um. . . I sent him to check it out while I sat comfortably {and safely} on the couch.
He found a baby deer relaxing on our back lawn.
We found a few more on the front side of the house.
That explains all my mysteriously eaten tomato and pepper plants.
And the yard full of deer poop we've been cleaning up day after day.
But they were baby deer.
And they were cute.
So I'm over it.
The eaten plants part.
Not the deer poop.
Because, seriously, gross.
That's what the neighbor's yards for.
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