Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pop-in (or out) for Thankgsiving!

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Because our tires needed to be changed, the weather was not ideal for travel and because we were not too excited about traveling a total of 6 hours on Thanksgiving day, we begged my aunt Jodi and uncle Dave if we could crash their Thanksgiving feast which was a mere 1 hour distance from our house.  I don't know how, and have little true desire to learn, to cook a turkey, it therefore was a great relief knowing that this Thanksgiving wouldn't be that moment.  There's something so intimidating about knowing that you have to put your hand up the backside of the...well, you know, to get that "extra" stuff out of the turkey before you can cook it (one should really have at least one licensed gastroenterologist in the family).  I didn't know that people ate gizzards until I saw it on the title of a shop in Michigan titled "Fish and Gizzards."  I really don't know if I could be one of those people who so strictly follow that code of ethics which goes "waste not, want not."  Eew.  I made the rolls and brought the string beans, safe, very safe.

IMG_1706 [800x600] Chris, Isaac, Gavin, Vanny, Britton, Douglas, Dave, Reed, Jodi, Guiliana, Tessa, and me in the reflection of Chris' glasses.

The food, of course, was fabulous and my aunt Jodi can make a wonderful pumpkin cheesecake and apple pie!  We had a great time with everyone, playing games (Balderdash, a favorite of mine, rabiator:  a machine used for milking rabbits), checking out Dave's awesome Christmas light display, and taking a short waddle down the street in order to get some food on the path to digestion.  We wish we could have seen Chris' family, but because of my earlier excuses, we'll have to wait until Christmas.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Ask "The Doctor"


Dear The Doctor,

My body is shaking and my nerves are shot as I finally sit down in front of this computer to express my current feelings. The symptoms started at around 4:00 this afternoon, shortly after my kids got home. I don't know if it's something they brought home with them, but it seems to have intensified with every hour. I just put my kids in bed and it is now 8:02 and the feeling of shakiness is starting to ebb. My heart rate has slowed down, I've stopped pulling out my hair, I've put the last cookie back, I've swallowed so my throat doesn't hurt from the over exertion of my vocal chords, my neck has finally popped, and I can finally sit and undue the top button of my ever shrinking jeans, ahhhh... What do you think is wrong with me? Is there a cure? I don't know if I can go on like this for much longer! Help!


Mrs. Shakey

Dear Mrs. Shakey

You have what is, in the world of pseudo-psychology, commonly known as Bonkerism. See definition below:

"Bonkerism: the theory that if any one person, usually of the female gender, is locked up in an enclosed area with his or her children for any sustained amount of time, and the children having no entertaining stimuli but each other, that that person will most likely embrace the thumbing of her lips while mumbling some nonsensical phrases (other physical symptoms like hair loss, "chubbiness", and cross-eyed-ness may occur), thereby accepting this condition as "the way", der Weg, la condizione, 方向 , fate, the unavoidable path. The call for help may reveal itself in the seemingly random statement of "I'm going bonkers!"Often those who regularly practice bonkerism meet there end in a special place with pink padded walls. Researchers have discovered a few treatments but they can cost quite a bundle as the labs can only be found in Hawaii, the Bahamas, and in cute little Chalets in Switzerland. Due to environmental hazards, these labs have never been built near child friendly climates. Dr. Eve Bonker, the founder of bonkerism is the first known patient to have recovered, this happening soon after her youngest child left home and got married, having practiced Bonkerism for many many years she gives the enduring sufferers hope." -- The Health Encounter of a Third Kind, p. 33.

Yes, Mrs. Shakey, there is hope and if you do have the funds, look into the suggested options. If things are tight, I'd suggest moving to a warmer climate so that the enclosed subjects might roam freely out of doors. Bonkerism doesn't have to be your fate.

Forever Listening,

The Doctor

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I t'ought I t'aw a Twighty Tat! I did, I did!

twilight ticket 1

With all the giddiness that I thought only possessed by 13 year old girls, I went to see the movie Twilight.  My mom and I met Erin and several of her friends at the theater Saturday morning.  The theater was packed with women and only 12 men, one of which sat by me with his wife.  Having read the book several times, I had certain expectations that I knew could not be completely met in 2 hours (Dear Ms. Hardwick, I would gladly sit for 6 hours in order to get every tidbit of the book as long as you give me a couple of potty breaks).  When you've read the book and then you see it on film it's hard not to constantly compare the two.  I find that I get distracted and am thinking too hard and am not sure if I'm getting the full effect intended by the movie makers.   So, as a movie I was curious what a non reader of the book thought.  Thankfully, that man I was sitting next to was such a subject.  I asked and he said in his lowest voice, "I thought it was great.  I really liked it", (men are so full of all those little exciting details we crave, not). So there it is.  I have to echo his simple opinion with a small amendment which goes like this:  I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED THIS MOVIE AND I'M GOING TO GO SEE IT AGAIN, AND, AND, AND (I think I'm hyperventilating)...Go see it if you haven't.  Read it if you haven't. And call me if you need to talk about it.  I had an awesome conversation on the phone with my bud Melisa who is in Michigan.  New Moon is officially on its way to becoming a movie, so, just another thing to obsess over for however long it takes to finish it.  Get to work guys, quickly!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Room Service, please.

My sister, Erin, and I were having a strange conversation which started by voicing that often recurring thought that I might be crazy. I've wondered this and have thought, well maybe everyone is just humoring me and telling me I'm not crazy when I really am. So sometimes I'll say, "I'm going crazy..." then I'll take a quick sideways glance toward the listener to see if they're shaking their head's up and down or side to side. I never seem to catch either action which makes me also doubt my vision. So, anyway, this time she chose the path of empathy and said that she too was going crazy and then we toyed over the idea of becoming room mates some day in an institution for the mentally insane.


What do you see Rorschach? Swatches of Thumbprints?

I took these ideas a step further, in the usual pattern of my sometimes conscious dreamlike vocalized thoughts, to wonder if perhaps Erin and I might someday be room mates in an in-mates kind of setting. Both of us, in the future having finally realized that living on the outside has become too expensive, and that since by then most of our tax dollars would be going toward correctional facilities with their vast libraries, room service, psychological services (a big perk for me), and the chance of getting another college degree paid by the state, might make this change of address necessary. And of course, my thoughts went on in this usual pattern to the point of wondering what kind of crime would I commit to make the crime worth leaving me with a record and my thumb prints in "the system" forever, or until electronic warfare becomes the norm. Having to suppress a number of violent crimes that would be aimed toward certain types of sex offenders, I tried to think of non-violent yet worthy of memory and great laughs while I wait out my year or more long sentence.


Last night, I asked Chris the same question I'm now asking myself, and he said he would probably sneak on a space shuttle aimed for the moon. They wouldn't be able to let him off, as you know it is outer space and would make them guilty of inhumane treatment, even for humans, and it would take at least 7 days to get back, so he'd have 7 days of weightlessness, a first hand view of Earth, some of that awesome space food and lots of fun buttons to push (this is assuming they don't have air marshals with loaded pistols and handcuffs on space shuttles).

Back to me. I am a pretty modest person, so wardrobe "malfunctions" are out. I can easily feel bad about hurting someone's feelings or possessions so shouting insults about a person's car while stealing it would also be out. Again, because of the modesty issue, I don't think I could get away with standing in my late 1980's biker shorts and halter top as still as a statue, with a trench-coat puddled around my feet in the MOCA, of course with an official looking label on the ground titled "uncommitted flasher- in yellow." Sometimes I've thought of connecting the dots on one of those Jackson Pollock splatter paintings that all of us have at some point said, "I could have done that!" while looking at the amazing results one gets by flicking paint onto a canvas (if you had thought of it first, you'd be rich, but you'd also have to act morose, accept the fact that the empty tube of cadmium red really has done permanent damage, and that you'll never be able to look at spilled milk or splattered spaghetti sauce the same way again).


Later (yes, it's always later when I'm thinking like this)...I know I'm not pure in heart, but I truly am still having a hard time as to what I'd do. My good "shoulder angel" must have eaten his veggies today because he is winning. Though, I'm pretty sure that in the next 4 to 5 day's the bad one will be winning. So, if any of you who have actually made it to the end of this blog entry have any ideas, please leave them in the comment section. Who knows, by tomorrow I may have completely reformed and realized that by the time this drastic step becomes necessary I may have 3 supportive sons who are either practicing doctors, plumbers, or great defense attorneys making it so that my medical care is free, my drains would be always unclogged, and I would never get the chance to suffer for my planned offenses.

Latest idea...break into a violin museum and play a Stradivarius, naaaa, I'm so out of practice it would hurt both me and the poor guy watching the surveillance videos.

I'd better go to sleep as this blog is getting weirder and weirder as I go...zzzzzzzzz

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I Love Lucy!

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Erin and I paid a visit to our newest niece while Chris watched her 4 girls and our 3 boys, 7 children under the age of 6, yikes! But, thank you my love for giving us the time to see this adorable little girl.

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I made her cry, somehow and found that moment to be the opportune time to hand her back to her dad and take some pictures. Lucy's mom wouldn't let me take any pictures of herself and I had the feeling that I'd end up with a fork in my eye if I tried.

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Aunt Erin has the magic to stop crying babies mid tear and put them right back to sleep.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The Zoo Keeper and Mr. Hyde(s)

I've been using the "big voice" way too much lately which is why this weekend's trip was so necessary.  I believe my mind is devoid of the ability to think of exciting things to do in this town.  Maybe my effort muscle has been pulled but when it comes to thinking of activities for my boys my brain starts to hurt.  So, here we are, left with 3 bored kids + 1 dull mommy = 4 people in need of evacuation, not forgetting the sanity saving variable called Chris. 

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Off we went to St. George for a 2 day break and to allow the "big voice" to recover from overuse.  Once we got there we had a wonderful time seeing most of my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, my dad, Max (the dog) and Tuna (the cat).  We had a great time hiking in Snow Canyon while gathering rocks, looking for dinosaur bones and foot prints, finding the sources of all that lava rock, talking, laughing, finding proper anatomy hiding bushes and making sand angels (I would guess that every culture has a need to make these ground impression angels and has to make due with whatever materials are at hand, snow, sand, ash, or primordial sludge).  Southern Utah, and for that matter ALL of Utah is packed with geological beauties.  It's a thrill to see the uncovered remains of time worn on rocks, mountains, and valleys. 

IMG_1616 [800x600] Fossilized Grandpa, Aunt Mary, Douglas, Reed, Chris, & Isaac stuck to this wall.  Amazing their cloths are still so intact!

We had a wonderful time seeing and doing and it is always worth it while one is in the moment.  Though, I would have to say that the dude who said "Focus on the journey, not the destination," never traveled seat-belted in a mini van for more than an hour with kids!  Unkindly, I sometimes think of my kids as wild animals because what kind child would throw their chicken nugget box at your head, scream at glass shattering pitches, and never tire if picking on it's fellow travel companion?  So, the zoo keeper (apparently me) and her wild animals, after this fabulous time in St. George, finished up their travels by returning to the home that now seemed the ultimate spa.  All it took was a total of 10 hours in a minivan to realize that the 6 inch thick water tanks, the 30 foot high fences, and the gaping moat between her and the ferocious creatures on the other side (oh, and the homemade healthy food stands in the walkways), really were great ideas.  "Change" isn't always such a good idea, it's just change and who knows, it might just be from the moving torture chamber with windows and a DVD player to a seat on a high wire with a great view of 50 alligators directly below. 

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A new gratitude has been born for the mundane life at home and with the gift of time and space from the minivan, the mute button on the "big voice" will probably keep, well...I'll try.  If it wasn't for that focus on the destination, we would never leave the house.  So, thank you my dear wonderful family, you gorgeous state called Utah, and you 3 great kids that stepped out of my minivan, leaving the Mr. Hyde's locked inside while we had fun,fun,fun.  Really, the destination was worth it!  Next time, just "beam me up Scotty!"

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A Reed-a-don!!!

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IMG_1677 [800x600] Someone lost his tooth!  According to him the tooth fairy is about 8 inches tall and is dressed in purple.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sleepless in Sin-eattle

I can't sleep anymore so I'm up early with nothing to do but blog. Isaac has climbed in bed with me and had to settle right in the middle of the bed, forcing me to sleep on my side. He's a funny kid. When he starts to wake a little he'll reach over and start playing with your face until you tell him to go back to sleep.

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The other reason I'm up is because I had a sudden feeling of guilt remembering that I accidentally emailed several people the wrong link to a very funny video clip. The problem was when I copied the link it turned out to be the clip that played after it on this particular site which was filthy and now I've sent all my wonderful friends some material that will singe all their ear hairs and burn the retina in their eyes. The original and hilarious link was one I got from my friend Melisa's blog which is where I should have copied it but didn't. Now I probably have friends who will never speak to me again or at least open my most likely profane emails. Boo-hoo.

Well, I'm going to try to do something of "good report" now that I've repented of my bad report. And, it's so dark in here that this super bright monitor is blinding me, forcing me to hold on to these little notches located on the letter's F and J like a blind man holds to his walking stick while falling off a cliff.

Side note: I got a ticket to go see Twilight with my sister and 18 of her friends on the 22nd, yipeeeeeee! She's got a lot of friends! This discovery hits especially close to home right now, realizing that I probably just lost most of mine...sniff, sniff...Sorry again.

Monday, November 10, 2008

"When I saw you I fell in love, and you smiled because you knew." William Shakespeare

"Stolen kisses require an accomplice."

the kiss sailor

"Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves."  ~Albert Einstein

Evening session in Dr. Minivan

Reed:  When you get married you kiss?  And then you can hug?

Mommy:  Yep. (keep the answers simple)

Douglas:  Well, I'm going to be doing a lot of kissing in my life.

I fear I have the 6 year old version of Casanova reincarnated in my son Douglas.  Having simultaneously had 3 girlfriends in Kindergarten and now at least one that I know of, I can hardly wait till he discovers that girls are plagued with cooties.  Fortunately, it's usually the girls decreeing him their's and the affection is always quite innocently displayed in chasing each other and giving hugs.

Reed asked me what cooties were after I told him to cover his mouth the next time he sneezed in my direction.  It was kind of hard to say as the picture of those cute plastic bugs popped into my head.


I resorted to comparing them to germs that don't make you sick and that girls have them if you're a boy and that boys have them if you're a girl.  I confused him and luckily he lost interest before I could expound any further.  In Reed I believe I am quite safe as he already wipes off my kisses in a habitual manner.  In fact I challenge him not to wipe them off and he smiles and cannot resist it.  Douglas once reminded him that you can't wipe off a kiss, even if it's wet "because the spit is just the shell of the kiss."

Pyrus calleryana

Since posting the previous post, my curiosity got the better of me and I had to look up the flowering and de-flowering (there is no connotation to that last word other than the innocent patterns displayed by natures wondrous ways) habits of the Flowering pear tree and learned that this tree blooms in the Spring and the Fall.

Some last minute pollinating


So..uh...let's look at the calendar,'s November 10th.  Yes, I believe it's still Autumn and I've noticed that a lot of my trees are now without leaves and are hunkering down for the upcoming winter storms.  So, what the heck is my flowering pear tree thinking?!  I have 4 of these trees and this one particular tree seems to think it's Spring.  I'm not a tree expert, though I do believe I have some understanding when it comes to the changing of seasons, but this does seem to be so last season to me.  Maybe this guy's just up for some last minute pollinating, I don't know, but I guess it's it's own business and I'll have to leave him to it, just weird.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

May the Magic Thumb be with you!


The dryer repairman came today, not between 1 and 5 but, much to my great delight, at 11:00.  And just as I suspected, a repairman with access to things we mortals cannot attain, he was in possession of a magic thumb.  I will not tell you how simple the repair was because to reveal it would be a great embarrassment and would forever doom me to that class of people unable to plug in something so simple as a hair dryer.  Truly, it wasn't that simple, but that magic thumb ought to be referred to the "trouble shooting" department at GE when they decide to rewrite the manual.   Since his repair took all of 2 seconds, I referred him to the maintenance of the washing machine which, for a good while now has smelled of some living organism akin to the one eyed water creature on the planet Dagobah in Star Wars:  The Empire Strikes Back.  After retrieving 5 pennies, a screw, 2 bobby pins, and some other mucky looking stuff, he flushed the whole thing with some sort of washing machine laxative thereby draining it of all impurities making it suitable for sanitizing all future pennies and screws.

 vote today

The car is still functioning and I was able to vote with little incident other than having to suffer with Isaac who had a case of boredom which symptoms were displayed in the need to run all around the gym, which had been dressed up as a voting station.  As I tried to keep an eye on him it may have appeared that I was trying to see who the guy next to me was voting for.  Not that I cared, but with those little walls there I felt the same feeling of guilt one might have while cheating on a test.  So, in order not to seem a voting cheater, I tried to voice my son's name a little louder while standing on my tippy toes in an I'm-not-looking-over-your-partition kind of way, rather above and beyond toward the great spectrum of the gym.  He didn't tell on me and I was able to exit the gym as a proud member of this free country bedecked with a sticker proclaiming that I voted.

Monday, November 3, 2008

I'm related to Super Erin!

super woman

What does it mean when your dryer stops working with a load of wet laundry in it? Or when the car you wish to use to take those wet cloths to the laundromat in won't start?  Or when the Internet decides not to connect? Or when your 3 year old finds paper to be very appetizing but in the way tobacco is consumed with chews and spits?   Perhaps I offended Electro, God of all things shocking.  Or maybe I've taken the role of Alexander who had a "horrible, no good, very bad day."  Well, it actually wasn't that bad because I happen to be the sister of Super Erin who came to my rescue just before the flux capacitor exploded, and brought life to the car battery and the use of her very capable dryer so that we might have clean underwear tomorrow.  Thank you Erin a million times over for your super hero skills, and for feeding us lunch while our stuff dried.  You are the woman!  Oh ya, I forgot to mention that she let me watch the new Tinkerbell movie, a privilege I know I would never have in a house full of boys.  Did you know they won't even let me walk down the "pink" aisle at the store?

Later...the dryer is still dead after several chest compressions (or repeated button pushing, door shuttings, and exclamations of frustration from the laundry lady, me) but then it may just be in a comatose state. Perhaps even an unconscious coping mechanism for dryers who are doomed to dry a butt load of laundry all in one day, while awaiting the GE repairman to come tomorrow between 1 and 5pm, no doubt with some power greater than mine, perhaps a magic button pushing thumb that can only be purchased at stores where they sell those hands that hit things to make them work.

Oh, oh, oh, the Internet just started to work, so here goes my post!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Candy, Costumes, and Cavities

IMG_1572 Here we have Reed, Isaac, Douglas, Alyssa, Chandler, Dantzel, Austyn, Preston, Brooklyn, Gabriella, and the one adult with the ability to keep all mobile creatures at bay for 1 second, Erin the Great.

This was the only picture where everyone was actually standing where they should. Who cares if nobody is actually looking in the right direction, it's the position that counts. It makes me wonder if those older black and white photos from the 1800s and early 1900s where nobody is smiling, if it wasn't really the bad teeth but rather the inability to focus, stay still, and smile at the same time. Actually, I think the no smiling thing was a habit from when people had to sit for hours and hours while an artist painted their likenesses but never got over the habit of not smiling, forgetting that the picture only took a few seconds and that their cheeks wouldn't kill after just a minute of smiling. This I-don't-have-to-frown-in-my-picture realization probably didn't occur to the sitter until maybe the 1950's when the photographer could drop the paint brush, pick up the camera and holler the words "smile", "say cheese", or "say Beach Blanket Bingo!", and who couldn't smile after saying something as stupid as that?

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Here are a few of the trick or treaters willing to stay still for a photo. We have Bell, a Power Ranger (I think), Alice, and a boppin' 50s girl all just dying to get out and start begging for future trips to the dentist, I mean candy.

Merry Christmas!

December 2018 (Cliff’s notes version:  Merry Christmas, we love you all, and have a happy New Year!) Dear Family and Friends (...