My Family

My Family

Wednesday, January 31, 2007


Interesting that mud is much slicker than ice.
Especially when it is 4-6 inches deep.
Add to the melting snow a day of rain and it is a be-yoo-ti-ful sight.
If you are a mud monster.

Yesterday afternoon Stephen, Emily and Nathan had piano lessons at 3:30pm.
At 30 minutes each, that puts us finishing up at 5pm.
Not too bad.
Except driving out to the bus yesterday, I slid and spun out just enough that I didn't want to risk coming home for one hour and then trying to get back out for the Primary Board Meeting at 7pm.

Oh, and did I mention that Pat is in AZ for work-related training?
He'll be home tonight, but it didn't help when it came to juggling everything for the PBMeeting.

So, I had friends lined up to watch the kids...
and was debating on how to use up an hour and fifteen minutes between the end of piano lessons and the time when I was dropping kids off before my meeting.
Eating out was an option, but deciding on the place was a little more difficult.
The kids were torn between Taco Smell, Booger King, and Windy's...but I kept thinking that the time it would take to feed the kids at one of those places would not be enough to fill that whole hour plus.

As I was driving down the highway, I had a thought.
It was Tuesday night, and Golden Corral has "family night" on Tuesdays.

Almost immediately, my logic took over.
Me? Alone with 6 kids at a sit down restaurant?
No way.

Dang that Golden Corral pot roast.
After thinking about it, I just couldn't stomach the thought of my less-appealing options.

I pulled into the parking lot of Golden Corral and threatened my kids--oh, I mean explained nicely how much I needed their cooperation to make this (seriously insane) endeavor to work.

And then we got out of the van and headed inside.
Within the first two minutes, I almost walked out 3 different times.
Once when everyone was shrieking and jumping around in the rain as if they had never see it before.
Once when Thomas was hanging from the bar where you rest your tray.
And once when Bekah had to "climb" the wall to see over.

By the time we reached the cash register, I was committed to stay, (at least in theory).
Total bill: Approximately $23.00
Not too bad for 7 of us! ($2.99 for Stephen and Emily, $1.99 for the younger 3, and Sam-Sam was free).

We were alerted to a table for 8 behind some friends of we headed that way, with me thinking they would at least understand my frustrated, terse snipping at my children as they chose not to behave.

We were soon seated, and headed to the salad bar first.
Everyone (except Sam-Sam) chose something they wanted or liked, and came back and ate their first plateful of food.
Next, I paired Stephen with Thomas and Emily with Bekah and instructed Thomas and Bekah to keep both hands on their glass plates at all times and have Stephen and Emily serve them what they wanted.
Genius, I tell you.
Those kids rocked.
They did a muy fabuloso job, and made me a very proud mama.
Same set-up, and a visit to the dessert bar ended the meal on a very sweet note.

No broken plates, no screaming, fighting, or hungry kids.
It was a miracle.
Even if I was slightly insane for choosing to go out to eat with 6 children in the first place.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Newest Dental Procedure

Bekah just asked me to cut her teeth.
Do you think it's possible?

Her sharp fingernails were taken care of in just a couple of minutes.
Why not clip her teeth as well?
They have bitten her fingers one too many times in the past couple of days.

I'll be putting in a call to our dentist to see if he'll specialize in 4 year old teeth cutting today.

Let Go!

Those are my almost 2 year olds favorite words right now.
It applies to almost everything...
when someone tries to take his toys (mainly dvd's he's popped out of the cases),
when I'm holding him and he doesn't want held,
when I'm changing his diaper.

Funny how sometimes I want to yell it too!
(Doesn't every mom at some point?)
If not, you are a saint!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Does being unable to go anywhere constitute being stranded?
Actually, it's not that I CAN'T go anywhere, it's just I'm choosing not to.
So, I guess that doesn't fit actual stranded status.

The van got stuck, spinning out in the snow, 4 times yesterday.
Twice I dug it out myself...
Once I just rocked it back and forth (you know,, turn the wheel a touch,, etc.)
And the last time, Pat was home and he and a neighbor pushed me out.
Seriously, a pain in the butt every time.

I am grateful to be in a warm home.
I am grateful to have food to eat.
I am grateful to live where I live, in a secluded little piece of what we call "heaven".
I am grateful for the knowledge I have for getting a vehicle "unstuck".
I am grateful that we got enough moisture in snow form to leave a significant snowpack in the mountains and bless our land in the summer.

But it can melt already.
Past the icy, messy, slushy, get stuck no matter what stage.
I like being able to go places.
A lot.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Faith Like a Child

It's amazing what happens when a storm is due and your child prays for a snow day.
The majority of that snow fell on Sunday night.
It's the most snow I've seen fall in one night since we moved here 3 1/2 years ago.
It's hard to tell, but that "snow-woman" is buried up to her middle.
The kids are a good 6 inches into that snow.
Those would be the boulders out front.
It's hard to see where they end and the other snow begins, but I think you get the idea.
Yup, that's up to the bumper in front.
No, I haven't tried to get out yet.
That will be an adventure, won't it?
That would be the hood of the van, with Emily measuring the snowfall.
Another pretty good picture of snow accumulation on the chairs out by the trampoline.
For those of you who have been here, that's our backyard...right above the "cave".
You can't see any of the rocks out back.
The coverage of snow is beautiful...and so needed here in our "desert".
(It doesn't feel very desert-like today!)
There is more snow in the forecast.
Potentially through Thursday.

It was snow day #2 for the kids.
(They had Friday off too due to the 4 inches that fell then.)
They are a little restless and bored...
Stephen actually told me he was ready to go back to school tonight.

If tomorrow is a snow day, or a 2 hour delay day, I'll be looking for ideas of things to do.
In the snow, inside, wherever.

Here's to a substantial snowpack in our mountains this year!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


We went to the temple this weekend.
I love to be there.
Even though it takes major planning, it is always a joy to spend time in the house of the Lord.

We were gone for 3 full days, and knew our pellet stove would run out of pellets before the weekend was over.
It wasn't much of a choice to turn the stove off...we just figured we wouldn't waste any pellets warming the house while we were gone.

Arizona turned out to be very cold.
It was very different than we expected...we usually wear shorts and short sleeves with no problems...but this time, it was actually cold enough that I was shivering walking into the temple.

I figured if it was cold in AZ, then certainly it was much colder we usually have a significant difference in temperature between the two places.
Come to find out, it was freezing here...
actually, quite significantly below freezing...
and with our home not being warmed, night or day for 3 days, it cooled down to a mere 36 degrees inside.

Both Pat and I were a little shocked at just how cold it was when we arrived home, but because it was late, we just bundled the kids into 2 sets of pj's and put them all under 3 or 4 blankets.
Sam-Sam was debating whether or not to stay asleep, and so I put him on my chest and wrapped the front of my winter coat around him.
He acutually fell asleep that way...and as I sat shivering, inside of my coat, my mind turned to our pioneer ancestors...who had little protection against the biting winter cold.
No shelter from the wind.
One or two blankets, and for some, no good winter coats, because they either didn't have the money to have one, or they had planned to arrive in Utah before the winter storms approached.

It took all night for our house to approach warm...
and the stove ran all night.
Even yesterday, it still was chilled in the rooms away from the stove...
and again, my heart went out to those who lost their lives...
sheltering their children against their hearts, trying to trap their body heat to keep their little ones alive, and yet still, feeling their child grow cold and still because they simply could not fight the grip of death that comes to those who cannot get warm.

I am so grateful for the shelter of my home.
Not the emotional or spiritual shelter it gives me from the world,
but this time, for the actual shelter from the physical elements that impact us.

I am grateful, when the wind chill lowers the outside temperature to 15 or 16 degrees, that my home provides protection for me...and for my family.
And I pray for those who do not have the ability to heat their homes...
and for those who do not have homes.
Because truly, they literally are freezing.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


I have a doll sitting on a shelf on my dresser in my bedroom.
I've shown her to a few people, mostly to have them shrug away her importance in my life.

She was the first surprise I remember under the Christmas tree.
She has always had her own unique smell, and was simply beautiful to me.
She has lost a foot (or a leg, depending on how you look at it).
Despite her nearing the Velveteen Rabbit "real" in my heart...she remains inanimate to the rest of the world.
Sweet Natalie, you will always have a special place in my heart.

Do you have anything that is special from your childhood?
I'd love to hear about it.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


I started the fall season of 2006 with great hopes for my writing...

I was certainly going to write every day...
I was going to submit articles like crazy until I found the perfect magazine match that would publish everything that flowed from my fingers...
I would not get discouraged...
I would not get distracted.

I felt like they were really pretty reasonable goals, granted, I needed to be focused, but these were things I could do!

Interesting what the course of life plays out within a matter of months....
Dizziness, worse than anything I've ever experienced,
A sister who needed support,
Lots of medical tests with no specific conclusive results,
and a pregnancy.

That writing train has been slightly rerouted.
I'm still committed to writing...but I've got to take a long hard look at what is realistic over the next 7 months (and realistically, the next 18-24 months...until bambino/a is old enough to not need the momma every 2 or 3 hours.)
The family that is already here and their needs have got to come first...which means...
staying on top of the laundry,
grocery shopping
and general home maintenance...
all of which have suffered greatly over the past 2 months.

So, if you have any ideas, send them my way...
I would love to think on them...
I just can't promise any grand results for a while.
(That's not an apology, just a realization...)

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Slavery vs. Responsibility

The kids don't go back to school until Monday.
They have spent the vacation technologically stimulated.
Movies, computer, more movies,
and every now and again, a game on mom and dad's Nintendo DS.

This morning I told them no technological distractions until they cleaned up some of the after-Christmas/New Years chaos.
It was a good plan.

It just wasn't enough.
They were supposed to clean the whole house for me.

I'll settle for their bedrooms, and their end of the house being relatively liveable again.
Thanks guys!