Friday, July 31, 2009


There ya have it!
That sums it up!

Week One with Simon
Parker and Simon went bowling with some GIRLS.
We went up to the cabin with some GIRLS.
We also went on a picnic and panned for gold.
I told you I was going to get rich!
I found a couple of rocks with flecks of gold, and I'm pretty sure I can cash them in for $1.79.

(Still up at the cabin) Seven hours of game playing, with GIRLS though. It was awesome! We played Nertz, Scum, Farkle, Quiddler, Speed Scrabble and ate and ate and ate.
We came home from the cabin in time for Parker and Garrett's last summer lacrosse game. There were no girls involved. After seeing the boys being beaten with lacrosse sticks, Simon decided he would stick with golf.

Garrett and Simon just left for the County Fair to see some GIRLS (and the pigs they raised). Garrett will have Simon back here in time for Parker's Sophomore Class Swim Party (where there will be more GIRLS).

So far, Simon is exhausted.
And we haven't even had time to hit up the non-GIRL activities like seeing the Denver Mint, the Natural History Museum, Hiking in Castlewood Canyon, etc.
Why do I have a feeling that when we DO do those activities, there will be GIRLS involved?

Thursday, July 30, 2009


Ooo...Ooo...I'm late!
I almost didn't get to play.

But I made it back from our little trip to the mountains for Writer's Workshop from Mama Kat/

I liked all of this week's prompts, but I chose:

Seven Things I LOVE About Summer

1) Doing NOTHING!!!!!
Who doesn’t love those long days of nothingness? I love getting up in the quiet coolness of the morning and enjoying cookies and coke while reading the paper. (And the teenagers love that I am not waking them up). Then I putter around the house doing a couple loads of laundry, organizing things, watering the flowers, and grocery shopping. And then it’s off to the pool to do a whole lot of NOTHING. Come home, clean up, cook dinner and do some more NOTHING. Love it!!!!

I love reading and it seems like there isn’t much time for sitting around the pool reading during the school year. Maybe because the pool is closed. I love historical fiction and mystery/thrillers……….no pulp fiction or chick lit though! Some recent good reads are People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks, The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, Moloka’i by Alan Brennert, Winter in Madrid by C.J. Sansom.

We probably use the grill 3 out of 4 nights that we eat at home. Chicken, Beef, Burgers, Dogs, Kielbasa, Veggies……..its all good!

Call me crazy! I like em! I know they are a pain to shop for, but once I find one I like, I want to go to the pool all day everyday and live in it. Two of my pregnancies were spent being a beached whale by the pool. I loved it!

I don’t think I have to explain this one. Juicy watermelon, nectarines, cherries, peaches, all manner of berries. Eat whole. Eat cut up. Cobblers, crisps, pies, smoothies!

Fake Otter Pops. I don’t like the name brand Otter Pops. I like the off brand TROPICAL ones from WalMart. I like em because they come in flavors like Banana, Pineapple, Watermelon (or some pink flavor) etc.

7) Doing NOTHING!
Have I mentioned that I absolutely LOVE the fact that, for the most part, our days are unscheduled? The whole day is stretched before you. Should we go to the park, take a hike, see a movie, go to a museum, explore a place we haven’t been ……….or………do nothing?

Monday, July 27, 2009


It's everyone's favorite day!
Let's play Random Thought Tuesday with Keely at The!

*Wow! Can you believe that I can't even think of anything random?
That's because I am cheating!
I'm writing this on Monday night because I am on my way to a cabin in the mountains with Parker and Simon (French Foreign Exchange Student) and some friends.

We're going to be kicking back, eating, playing games, panning for gold (I'm gonna be rich!), hiking, going on picnics, wandering around Breckinridge, reading and playing games.

*We've been teaching Simon important vocabulary words that his English teacher hasn't taught him. We are soooo service oriented at this house! You should hear the boys define "weird," "creepy," "tight," and "Sike!" But Simon has indulged us as well.

Garrett: "How do you say UGLY?"
Garrett: "Yeah, like, 'that girl is ugly.' "
Simon: "Ugly."
Garrett: "Yeah. What is the word."
Simon: "Ugly. We say ugly."
Garrett: "So how do you"
Simon: "Same. We say sexy."

I guess we know all the French we need to know!

*You know how car rides with kids are an awesome time to TALK?
Over the years, I've trapped all the boys in the car to discuss important topics.
Garrett is the best. He stares longingly out the side window with one hand on the handle.
He's kind of saying a double prayer: "Please make her stop talking" and "I'm gonna open the door and dive me!"

We've covered a multitude of important topics like SEX and DRUGS and well, the other day we covered ROCK AND ROLL.

It wasn't exactly rock and roll, it was more about hip hop.
We had a philosophical discussion/argument on who has done more for the industry:

Kanye West or Lil Wayne?
We're at an impasse.
At least we can both agree on sex.

*Bacon, Cupcakes, Butter, Avocados, Shrimp Cocktail, Sugar Cookies with Pink Frosting, Ham and Funeral Potatoes, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy...

I'm hungry! Don't all of those sound good?

* Brian hates to play games - like card games and board games, and, well, head games too.
I like games and no one will play games with me except for Parker. But how many games are for two players? Here's where Simon comes in!
From the moment he got here, I've tricked him into believing that 1)we always play games and 2) everyone has to put their own dishes in the dishwasher after meals. So now HE is setting an example for the boys and the boys think THEY are setting an example for him. I just leave my plate on the table and walk away.

*I've got to do an update on Trammell in Cambodia!!!! But I will be out of town when his email comes Tuesday night. I won't have computer access for a couple of days, so you'll have to check back.

* Oh, I ordered some really cute Ed Hardy tennis shoes. I was hoping they would come by now. They aren't the usual dark colors with skulls. They are an aqua color with koi and geishas and skulls.
*You know how I hardly watch ANY TV?
Well, I have a new favorite show! Are you ready?
Yeah, I really like Kat Von D and the gang.
I have a sick fascination for all the people who come in there and get the most bizarre things tattooed: a pic of their dog on their calf, a screaming pumpkin on their cleavage, or a picture of themselves!!! <- well, half the face is themselves, the other half is a skull (that makes it way more understandable.)

Enough of the random! I have to get up tomorrow at 5 am if I'm going to get everyone out of here at 8.


I substituted for Relief Society yesterday.
The lesson was on a talk give by Dallin H. Oaks in the last General Conference.

The title is Unselfish Service D (without the D but I can't do the link without the D). You can read the whole talk and it really is worthwhile.

I loved all the conference talks, but after reading this one 7-8 times and pondering it all week, I really came to love it.

The crux of this talk is that in order to come unto the Savior, we need to lose ourselves in service.

The Savior told his disciples:
“If any man will come after me [He said], let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it” Matthew 16:24-25

I particularly appreciated that the title of this talk was not just "Service," but "Unselfish Service."

Sometimes we are reluctant to serve because we 1) don't have time - we're busy with families 2) we are afraid our efforts won't be good enough or 3) we feel like we already served and someone else should do it this time.

1) Sometimes our time is limited. There are definitely seasons when it is easier to serve. But all of us can find a little bit of time to help someone in need. We can make a phone call and friendship someone new. We can double our recipe and make an extra dessert or meal for someone. We can involve our children in service and let them reap the rewards and feel the happiness of serving at a young age.

2) Our abilities are good enough! We may not be gourmet cooks or concert pianists but neither of those are required to assist others. All of us have talents and abilities that can be used to help lift others. One sister told about livng in a tiny apartment that didn't even have room for a table. She was reluctant to have the missionaries over for dinner because there was no where for them to eat. She overcame her worries and served them dinner on TV trays while they sat on the couch. She and her husband sat on the floor with their plates on the coffee table. Everyone ate, everyone had a good time.

3)There is always plenty of work to go around. Just as we welcome help around the house from our husbands and children, our Relief Society Presidents, Elders' Quorum Presidents and Bishops welcome our efforts at visiting teaching, befriending less active members, reaching out to the youth, and assisting in anyway to lighten their burdens. We made convenants at baptism and in the temple to help others and to consecrate our time and talents to the Lord.

Gordon B. Hinckley said, “He who lives only unto himself withers and dies, while he who forgets himself in the service of others grows and blossoms in this life and in eternity.”

President Thomas S. Monson said, “You can never love the Lord until you serve Him by serving His people.”

As is always the case in Relief Society, we had a stimulating discussion and many were willing to share their experiences and insights. The time flew by and we obviously didn't get to discuss every aspect of the talk.

I highly recommend reading it!!!

Saturday, July 25, 2009


We picked up our Foreign Exchange student today.
Simon is 14 1/2 and is from a village near Normany, France.


Although we do not know ANY French,
the Parker and Simon are FLUENT
in the international language of VIDEO GAMES!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

In a Perpetual State of Giddiness!

It's time for Mama Kat's Writers-Workshop-l. I chose the prompt to write about something that makes me giddy.

We already know what makes me giddy:

There's more!

You know how the BONEHEAD BROTHERS make me laugh, cry and tear my hair out all at the same time?
You know how they are 17-18 year old boys and they act like.........17-18 year old boys?
Yeah, they are loud, obnoxious, messy, and sweaty.
Yeah, they think they are cool and funny and soooo smart.
Yeah, their idea of fun is to take lots of food to the basement, play video games and talk about girls until I text them at 2 am and tell them to SHUT UP!

And you remember the BONEHEAD BROTHER'S REUNION?
It started last night when Garrett flew to Utah for a PARTY, PARTY WEEKEND with Tyler.

He arrived at 10:54 pm.
I told him to text me when he got there.

Check! He texted at 11:08.

And I told him to take lots of FUN pictures.
This was in my inbox this morning - sent from his phone.

Sometimes they surprise me!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Who doesn't LOVE mail?

Me: Parker, you got something in the mail.
P: I did? What is it?

He follows me outside to the car where I left it.

P: What is it?
Is it a check?
Is it money?
It's an invitation to a party?

Me: {evil laugh}

I guess not everyone loves mail.

Parker's on page 13 of All Quiet on the Western Front. Only 280 to go.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


It's my favorite day!
It's Random Thought Tuesday with Keely: theunmom/.
Go there. Play along. Link up.

*Couldn't post early this morning because I tool Garrett to get his SENIOR PICTURES taken. Yea Garrett! Yea senior pics!
He gets a discount (if he can find the coupon somewhere in his trunk or under his bed) because he did this for them:

*I made SMOOTHIES for the kids yesterday.
We love homemade smoothies.
There is nothing remotely healthy about the ones we make…
Other than the 7 servings of fruit.
There are probably 29 teaspoons of sugar.
Who cares?

Here’s what we do:

Put all of the following into a blender:
Scoops of Raspberry Sherbet
½ of banana
3-4 Strawberries
Orange Juice
4-5 Ice Cubes
Blend away.

You can put in whatever fruit you want:

I forgot. They are healthy because the Raspberry Sherbet is FAT FREE.

*The foreign exchange student comes on Saturday.
I decided it was time to get ready for him.
No, I didn’t make the guest room bed.
I started with important things.
I cleaned out the pantry
and picked up the rifles or shotguns or whatever kind of guns they are off the floor of the storeroom.

*What is wrong with our family? (Don't answer that!)
Last night, the tornado sirens went off about 10:15ish.
First, I went outside. (?)
Then, I went to the top of the basement stairs to call the boys UP. (?)
After calling their names 50 times, I realized that big gusty bursts of cool air were coming up the stairway.
Finally, Parker answered, "Mom, were you calling us?"
Me: Yeah.....What is with all the wind down there? Is the door open?"
Parker: "Yeah. We were outside because the tornado sirens are going off." (?)

*Parker told me he failed the “permit test” at drivers’ ed and has to go back to take it again this Friday.
Liar, liar pants on fire!
I didn’t believe him for even ½ a second.

*Seriously, does anyone really CARE about Jon and Kate?????

*I bought my first Christmas present.
I’d tell you all about it but then
Garrett would know that he is getting…………

Monday, July 20, 2009


As you may or may not know,
the BONEHEAD BROTHERS have been separated for THREE WHOLE WEEKS.

Okay, it's going on four!

Tyler has been at BYU for summer term.
I just don't know HOW they've been able to manage.

Just last night, I said to Garrett,
"I feel sorry for Tyler's roommate."
G: "Really? Why????"
Me: "Well first, there's Conquistador l and Tyler farts."

Garrett didn't see either of those as deterrents to living with Tyler.

So, if you haven't seen your Siamese Twin in 3 weeks and he isn't coming home until mid August, what should you do?

YES! It's a Bonehead Brother Reunion!

Me: "Garrett wants to go visit Tyler in Provo."
Brian: "I'm fine with that. When does he want to go?"
Me: "Next week, like from Monday to the next Monday."
Brian: "Oh NO! Hell NO! He can go for 3-4 days. He should go for long enough to go to class with Tyler and go to Tyler's singles ward, but not longer than 3-4 days."

So it's all set.

Garrett will be in Provo Thursday through Sunday.

I wish I could tell you to come back and read about their reunion and adventures, but do you really think that we're going to hear about them?

So if you're in Provo this weekend,
keep an eye out!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

It's NOT A CUPCAKE but.....

You all know I love cupcakes and cookies and butter and bacon and...
Well, really I just love food!

I just made
and thought I would share:

1 lb. Pasta - like Rotini or Farfalle or Fusilli

Cook Pasta according to package directions.
Rinse in cold water and drain.

1/2 C Olive Oil
1/4 C White Wine Vinegar (or Red Wine Vinegar or flavored Vinegar)
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a small bowl, whisk oil, vinegar, salt and pepper together.
Forget the small bowl!
Just put everything in the pot of boiled pasta.
Marinade overnight.
Really!!! Who is thinking about tomorrow tonight and boils their pasta 24 hours in advance?
Don't worry about it.
Boil it in the morning.
Marinade until a couple of hours before dinner.

1 jar Marinated Artichokes chopped
1 can Olives - except for the ones you eat while draining them
20 - 25 Grape Tomatoes cut in half
1/2 chopped Red Onion
8 oz fresh Mozzarella cut in chunks
2 stalks of Celery chopped

Cream Sauce <- THIS is what makes it!
1/4 C Mayonnaise
1/4 C Sour Cream
2 T Pesto
1 t Dijon Mustard
2 T freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

In a small bowl, mix all the above and toss with pasta mixture.
Forget mixing it up in the small bowl. You seriously can just dump everything in the pasta pot and stir vigorously. Taste it and add 1/2 of all of the cream sauce ingredients. You don't need to measure. You get the idea.

Refrigerate until you serve.

Now you can make the pasta, marinade and sauce and add ANY of the following instead or in addition:

Any meat - salami, ham chunks, grilled chicken
blanched broccoli
zucchini or squash
any kind of cut up cheese - monterey jack or cheddar
thawed frozen peas
radish slices
green onions

I can't wait to eat this tonight!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Driver's Ed with Parker

Parker is spending everyday this week at Driver's Ed.
How exciting is that????
Except there's no actual DRIVING involved.

The purpose of this class is to get your classroom work done so you can get your permit the minute you turn 15.

Our laws are a little wacky. In order to actually get your license before you turn 35, you have to follow a complex 67 step process that starts when you are 14 1/2 and must proceed like a shuttle launch or brain surgery.

Also, in case you haven't noticed, we are merciless teasers at our house.
But luckily, Parker is an old soul. He is a fun loving 14 year old who loves to blow stuff up on the drive way and laugh his head off at "Tom & Jerry" cartoons. But he's also very serious about school, church, lacrosse and learning life's lessons through observation.

Oh.......and he's 14 1/2, 4' 11" and about 90 pounds and he takes it all in stride.

To his credit, Parker has some decent driving experience.
Besides driving the ride on mower all over the place, we have this 97 GMC Sonoma truck
that is used for hauling. Every trash day, it's his job to drive the truck from one end of the yard to the other and offload the bags of grass clippings and yard word debris. He has also driven me to neighbors' houses.
Here are some conversations with Parker:

Me: "Come on. You're driving me to the Brown's so I can give them this."
P: "Okay"

After he moves the seat ALL the way forward (it's a bench seat, so now my knees are up around my chin), backs out of the driveway, drives down the street, makes a left hand turn and starts up a small hill...............
I ask..........
"Can you EVEN SEE over the steering wheel?"
P: "Nope, not really."
Me: "Oh, well we're almost there."

Me: "You ready for Drivers' Ed tomorrow?"
P: "Uh yeah, I guess."

Me: "Do we need to get a booster seat for you?"
P: "Yeah! You're funny mom."
Me: "I'm just saying. We could get phone books or something"

Me: "How was driver's ed?"
P: "Fine."
Me: "Did you know anyone there?"
P: "Oh yeah, Max, Preston, Matt, and three other kids from school."
Me: "Ahhh.....what did you learn?"
P: "Well, it was typical. We saw all the usual videos where everyone dies. You know- it's basically like the teenagers think they are invincible and they think 'it will never happen to me,' and then they are idiots with the car and everyone dies."
Me: "Hmmmm.."
P: "Yeah. We saw about five versions of the same video: Geico's, Allstates, and some others. Basically, teenagers are idiots."

Me: " was it today? Did you drive anywhere?"
P: "Yeah.........I drove to Wyoming and back."
Me: "Cool. What did you guys do?"
P: "Ummm....more of the same. This nurse came from Swedish (top rated trauma hospital in the city) and he brought pictures of stuff he's seen. It was cool."
Me: "So it was like pictures of accident victims and stuff?"
P: "Yeah it was like yesterday but real pictures of people who have come in there from car accidents."
P: "Oh and we took a quiz with permit questions on it. I did well. I missed 2."
Me: "Cool. 2? Out of how many."
P: ".........mumble 5"
Me "You missed 2 out of 5?"
P: "Mom! 25!"
Me; "Okay then, you've learned everything: teenagers are idiots and you know all the answers to the permit test questions. I guess you know everything."
P: "Yep....pretty much."
He went back today though.
I wonder which movies they are going to see today?
Probably more blood and gore.
I would like that class.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009



Don't you love Random Thought Tuesday.

I do...because I'm random.
I'm late joing in with Keely I tried to post this morning but Blogger was broken,

as in, it wouldn't let me space anything. It was like my "enter" button was broken. So I gave up.

I worked yesterday.
Guess who my boss was?
Garrett - my 17 year old.
Wow! That was a trip.

He set up his laptop and showed me how to enter information onto this website while he drove to the office to pick up some more files.
Ummmm.......that didn't work out so well.
He told me to call him if I had questions.
I called him while he was still in the driveway.
He made it look super easy. It wasn't.
Who knew I was stupid?
I never thought I was..........until yesterday.
Good thing I wasn't getting paid!

Guess who is in Drivers' Ed this week?
Yep, tiny baby!
We've been our usual loving and compassionate selves and have been teasing Parker that maybe he should take a booster seat or some phone books with him.

Last week, I read The Elegance of a Hedgehog.
I had a difficult time getting into it at first.
And then suddenly, I rounded a corner and loved it.
I was reading it at the pool.

The writing was so beautiful
and what was happening was so beautiful that I started to cry.
I had to put the book down.
Then I picked it back up and continued reading
and I would cry again over how tender it was.

I was sad when it ended.
But I don't know that I would recommend it because it was soooo hard to get into at first.

I signed up to have a foreign exchange student.
He's from France.
He's 14 1/2 and he's coming for 3 weeks.
I told Parker, "I got you a playmate."
Really, we'll have a good time.

Parker played in the Varsity lacrosse game last night
and SCORED!!!!!!!

I love reading the paper in the morning
while eating a bakery item - like brownies or cupcakes and drinking an ice cold coke.

But the paper is making me really mad lately.
I'm deciding -
is the newspaper dumb? or are people dumb?

The article are written from a stupid perspective about stupid people doing stupid things and it leaves me wanting to say DUH!


Monday, July 13, 2009


Today we are talking about Sibling Rivalry.
Are your kids Friends or Foes?

How do you encourage love at home?
How much bickering and arguing can you tolerate?
What is or is not acceptable?

First, I have to look at my own childhood.
There were 4 of us.
I was the oldest, the only girl and obviously the most well-behaved, least troublesome child.
To be honest, I don’t remember us really arguing much.
I'm sure we did.
It was like two families.
There was my brother and I - 2 1/2 years apart.

And then there was a big gap with the "babies" being 10 and 12 years younger than I.
I know that we were NEVER allowed to fight physically.
If we wanted to hit each other,
we had to wait until my parents left to go to some church meeting. ;)
I’ll tell you about chasing my brother with a ski pole some other time.

My mother also made sure to find something good and praiseworthy about each of us.....which with some of those boys wasn't always easy to do!
One time when she was yelling at my brother,
I came in and sweetly announced,
“Mother dear, I just finished emptying the dishwasher
and now I will go and pick up the toys.”
For some reason, she didn’t think I was being altruistic and called me out.
But I was always close to my brothers and we’re still very close today…
Maybe even a little bit sick and twisted close………as my fantasy would be to live with all of my brothers and their families on the same street.

I don’t want you to think that we were perfect…….only I was.
We did have our moments.

My brother did slug the other brother and say, “Dude, I’m sick of you always being so selfish!”
They were 25 and 23 and it was the day before the selfish one’s wedding.

As for my own angels,
It’s pretty much the same.
Physical violence is never allowed………except on the lacrosse field and only when focused on the opponent.
I don’t put up with name calling or belittling either.

I've tried to encourage my kids to find a talent or skill that is just theirs...something they can excel at without having to compete directly with their brothers.

We didn't have many "play dates." The boys had to play with each other so they pretty much had to get along.

We try to support each other by having the entire clan go to the boys games, recitals, choir performances, speeches etc.

And I do remember having little talks with them about “Your friends will come and go but your family will always be here.” Etc. etc.
I even remember the boys bickering one time in the kitchen
And I pulled the Heavenly Father card.
I did.
But I wasn’t lying.
I can’t remember everything I said but I remember feeling like if I didn’t bear my testimony of our family and its purpose, I would have to answer to Heavenly Father. I knew that as the mother, I would be held responsible.

I told them that. I bore testimony of my responsibility as a Mother and their responsibilities to each other as family members and brothers.
It was pretty sobering.
No one said an unkind word the rest of the day…..
Maybe even the next day too. ;)

So share your hot tips!
How do keep the kids from killing each other?
Comment away!

Saturday, July 11, 2009


Remember in 4th grade when your teacher taught you that ANYONE could write poetry? And you learned to write Haikus?

Our local newspaper has a weekly Haiku contest.
They throw out a topic like GRASS or CHERRIES.
The winner gets $25.
I haven't entered.
I haven't played along.

But yesterday, I was thinking of all the things that remind me of summer.
And rather than make a LIST,

I wrote some Summer Haikus.
Don't laugh.

You can do it too!
Three lines - first line = 5 syllables, second line =7 syllables, third line = 5 syllables.

Write your own and comment back.
I want to read yours!


Long days of nothing

No plans, no obligations
Do just what you want

Under breezy trees
White clouds drift through turquoise skies
Views mottled by leaves

Juice dripping freely
From melons, peaches, cherries
Staining chins and hands

Swim suits and towels
Coppertone wafts through the air
True scent of summer

Cherry or grape please
Orange is last to be picked
Ice cold, sticky bliss

Sizzle, Steam, Smoke
Eating to the crickets’ song
Hamburgers, Hot Dogs and Ribs

Slowly, slowly falls
the sun into night. Streetlights on.
Darn! Time to go in.

The ceiling fan whirs
Heat hangs in the air outside
I twist in the sheets

Friday, July 10, 2009


It’s time to PARTY!
We skipped last week.
So I hope you have saved up your brilliance for this week’s topic:


Sibling Rivalry!

Do your kids tease, bicker or fight <-okay that’s like asking if they breathe!
Do you think it’s inherent in families?

Is there anything you can do about it?

What do you do when all HECK breaks lose and everyone is at each other’s throats?
What are your limits?
How do you encourage “Love at Home?”

So start a fierce competition in your home to see who can come up with the best solution – kidding!

Think about it this weekend.
Come back on Monday and comment.
OR better yet, email your wisdom and you can be the guest poster!

On your marks, get set, GO!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Plan the FUNERAL

THIS is not what I expected at all today!

I planned on giving you a few updates ..... like about the Black Widow l, Trambodia, Peter Rabbit and the vegetable garden, and my brush with fame........well I still am going to....kinda.
Black Widow & Babies Update:

As of last night, Momma Black Widow was STILL ALIVE!

The whole "catch the offending creature in a jar with no air or food or water" was a HUGE mistake. I had know idea that she would bear children and live forever!

A month has gone by.
She FINALLY died some time in the wee hours of morning.
But what now? What about the egg sack, ball, nest thingy?

I do have one friend of a friend of a reader who is NOT HAPPY that I am not planning on releasing 60 baby black widows into the wild.
He is really offended and upset. Evidently, he plays his clarinet and violin for HIS pregnant black widown in captivity and then drives somewhere where black widows are revered and appreciated and sets them free. Oh please, oh please don't let him find out about this.

Seriously, this is an INSECT (okay - arachnid) DISASTER.

Why, oh why, couldn't have just done the right thing and smash the black widow with a rock?

Oh and since I am evidently a collector of dead insects, I now have these on my desk.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Three Second Rule????

Is it a "Three second rule?" or "Five second rule?" or "Thirty minute rule?"
And does it just apply to your own house?

Just the kitchen?
What about the bathroom?

Who made up this rule?
I need some clarification.

The reason I ask is because the other day, Parker ate a churro off the street.

And I'm not talking about from the in VENDOR.
I mean from the in OFF the street.

And not really off the street, but off of the parking lot.
Is there a difference? And if so, what is it?
I admit it.

I bribe my kids to accompany me places with food.

I told him he could get WHATEVER he wanted from the luscious Costco food court, knowing that even if he bought one of everything, it wouldn't cost more than $5.

So we were leaving Costco with 2 Polish dogs, 2 drinks, 1 ginormous slice of pizza and 2 churros............along with the heavy laden cart filled with life sustaining items like Blood Orange soda, salami, beach towels and AAA batteries.

We made it all the way to the car when one of the churros just broke in half and fell to the ground.
He paused.
He snatched it up off the parking lot.
And quickly took a bite, like eating it hurriedly would prove it was alright.
It's alright isn't it?
I don't think he beat the 3 second rule.
He might have beat the 5 second rule.
But he for sure beat the 30 minute rule.........which is why I like the 30 minute rule.
And besides, our Costco is only like a year old,
so it can't be that bad.........can it?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


It’s Random Thought Tuesday with Keely The Unmom/.

- I love Random Thought Tuesday. In my life, everyday is Random Thought Day.

- Garrett got a NEW job. Oh he’s still a lifeguard. But in his free time, he is a business man. It’s serious business too! He has a blackberry and a laptop and he a cosigner on the business account. (Because I am such a supportive mom, I laughed – like guffawed- the whole time he was telling me about it). He kept saying, “Mom, why are you laughing?” I was laughing to hard to deny that I was laughing. Anyway, he is managing a self storage center. He rents out units, collects rent, locks people out when they don’t pay their rent, lets them back in when they finally do come up with the money, etc. It’s a legit job.

- When Garrett and I went to the funeral last week, he nudged me and said, “Mom, see that statue on the right?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Garrett: “It looks really familiar.”

Me: “Duh! It’s The Pieta. You’ve seen the real one in Florence.” Garrett: “Yeah…….I knew it looked familiar but isn’t the real one bigger and it’s not plaster is it? Isn't it made out of marble?” Oh geez!

- It’s going to be 96 degrees today. I’m thinking of spending the day at the pool. Brian says that is backwards to how most people think. He says that on hot days, people look for things to do INSIDE, not purposely go outside. What do you think?

- We are getting a new bishop Sunday. I’m excited! Not because I want to dump the old bishop. I like him. I LOVE change. I find it exciting.

- Don’t you hate it when you are handling frozen juice, ice cream or popsicles and sometime in its life it has melted and dripped and then refrozen and every time you touch the container, it’s sticky. What is with that?

- I love Colorado summers. If you’ve never been to Colorado, you really should visit. I have NEVER seen a sky so cloudless and blue. Everyday is gorgeous.

- If I see ONE MORE Michael Jackson anything, I am going to scream. Enough already!

Monday, July 6, 2009

OOPS! I Did it Again!

I'm a slow learner. A really slow learner!

Yesterday, we were asked to fast and pray for one of the missionaries in the mission here. He is serving in the neighboring stake. They were having a zone activity and he fractured his neck. He has feeling in his arms but not in his legs. He is having surgery to see if they can repair whatever they need to so that he can get the feeling back. His family has come from out of town to be with him. The whole story is really sad.

Luckily, between sunday school and relief society, the nursery leader stuck her head out of the nursery and asked if i could help her. A sweet little girl had soved wads of toilet paper down the toilet and the mini toilet in the nursery was overflowing, plus one of the little boys really had to go.

So while looking for the plunger and taking this boy to find his parents, I had a minute to say a little prayer. I was busy making my case before the Lord and pleading that he would restore the feeling to this missionary and make him whole. I even had a convincing argument that such a miracle would really unite the mission. I was going on and on "selling" the Lord on my idea of what a good outcome would be.

Suddenly I realized that it isn't really my decision. How do I know what would be "best" for this missionary? I found myself saying, "Nevermind Heavenly Father. I take it all back. I don't know what the best thing is. It's wrong for me to ask for that. What I really want is for thy will to be done."

How many times to we try to counsel the Lord and tell him what WE think would be best?

Having found the plunger, someone to fix the toilet and the little boy's dad, I entered Relief Society just as the lesson was starting.

The lesson was on "Sincere Prayer." Hmmm.........who needed that lesson?
Yep, sometimes I need it spelled out for me!

Friday, July 3, 2009


Summer is the time to reunite and reconnect with family.

There's the big hugs and sloppy kisses from people you've never met,
matching t-shirts for 125, warm potato salad in the park, and skits about "inside" family jokes that anyone born after 1959 doesn't get.

And everyone's favorite activity is when the professional photographer shows up to take pictures of the whole gang!
I hope you have a wonderful time at your reunion!

I just hope it's not with any of these families!

A family that hunts together..........eats?

If you're hookin up with Ron and Lucinda and gang in North Dakota, you might want to offer to bring the burgers.

If you are passing through Nebraska, do NOT accept an offer to stay in the Bates extra room. Get a hotel!

Looks like the Young family reunion has started without you and they aren't playing card games!

And I thought it was bad when they passed out matching t-shirts at the reunion.

Can you say............."Family Tree?"
I'm sorry.........just say no.
But I do want to see how the multigenerational picture comes out.
Bummer that Jeff and BeckLynn won't be there. They're.........busy. But they send their love and sent this pic so they can be photo-shopped in!
Happy Family Time!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


In my darkest hour of sitting by the pool,
you felt my pain and heard my pleas and responded.

Look what someone brought by last night -
Aren't they are cute and fesitive? And the pinwheels that really spin when you walk!

and look what someone else brought by.
Guess what I am having for breakfast?

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I don't want to admit this, but since there are only 3 readers of this blog, it will be our little secret.
Jen suggested I "try" The Cookie Company at Southlands.
Do think the fact that the when I walk into The Cookie Company, the owners stop what they are doing, bag up a frosted sugar cookie and ask me how yesterday went (including details) is an indication that I've tried it?
It's just that they are a small business owned by women and I WANT them to succeed!

Now on to Writer's Workshop with Kat at Mama's Losin It.
She puts out five prompts and you are invited to write to one of them.

I chose #2 - Write Five Incredibly Short Books.
The examples listed to inspire us included:
"The Book of Female Popes"
"The 2008 Book of General Motors Profits"

Here are five books that I wrote over the winter and are on my summer reading list -

"Hip Hop Songs with Family Friendly Lyrics" - this will be a wonderful tool for Family Home Evening.

"Professional Athletes We Should Emulate" - a must have for any teenage boy desiring to "go places" in life.

"My Love Affair with Housework"

"Smart Boys" - Lists of ALL the intelligent things boys do during teenagedom.

And - inspired by a Canadian friend (and my brothers who are brats), "Canada's Contributions to World History."

Happy Reading!