Thursday, May 29, 2008

Wide Awake and Frustrated

LD and I have been awake since 3:30 am. LD is tired, but not sleepy and I'm the lucky one that gets to be up with him. I even tried putting him back in his crib and letting him cry it out...after 35ish minutes, DH was begging me to get him so he could sleep. Lucky him. I didn't even get to workout...LD was still awake and DH was still asleep. I'm even more frustrated since between my calling and the end of year school stuff...and throw in unexpected company over the weekend and leaving to visit relatives in a week...long road myself...three kids, there is so much that isn't getting done. How Frustrating! Thanks for letting me vent. Have a great day, y'all!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Food Storage----What works for ME!

I have been storing food for years. But, in the last couple of weeks I had a wonderful idea that really works for me and my space I have to store. Today, I carried out the final step of my plan and I love it! It is perfect for me. I guess I realized that I have to store food as it works for me...not everyone else.

I have a long hall closet and that is about the only place to store food. I do have staples like beans, wheat, rice, etc. I also have amassed a collection of cans of soup, chili, tomatoes, peanut butter, rice, etc...., but it, to me, is all just a chaotic mess. Without having a room or location that I can easily view what I have and rotate it, it just wasn't working for me. I probably have 1-2 months worth of food, but it would be rather interesting to see how it could get thrown together.

So, I sat down, created a "Week 1" menu and shopping list. Then I went to the store, purchased all the items and a big, cheap tote. I placed all of week 1's items in the tote. Before storing the tote, I took note of all the expiration dates so that I could be sure to rotate items in a timely manner.

I am so excited. This works so well for me. The whole week is there, in the tote, and planned out. When I need to use this week, it will not be haphazard meals thrown together. My goal is to have 16 weeks of food this way (just over three months). Because I am not rotating in the traditional sense, these totes can be stored in the back of the closet, hidden away, until time to rotate and/or use! After the 16 weeks, I will continue to add to the staples part of the long-term storage.
An unexpected benefit is that I realized if I ever felt prompted to share in my abundance with those less fortunate, how easy to thrown in a tote and some recipes in my car and give a week of food away.

I am so excited. I just sit and look at my tote in awe. It works so well for our family that I am surprised I didn't think of it sooner! :)

Addendum: I just went out to my garden and picked our first zucchini of the year! :) We've already been enjoying onions, radishes, and cilantro, just seems more like a harvest to pick a zucchini. We also have 5-6 pink tomatoes and a ton of blackberries! :)

Since I'd already posted about food storage, it left me in awe of the wisdom of God. He tells us to store food and He tells us to grow a garden. What a perfect combination. If we had to, we could live with our stored food and supplement with fresh fruits and veggies for a much healthier and more palatable combination! How wise! :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

You know it's going to rain when.....

  1. DH washed his car on Saturday.
  2. You got up extra early to set out the hoses on the lawn and watered the front AND back on the same morning.
  3. You prayed for rain yesterday so you wouldn't die in the horrid heat and humidity at an amusement park (a whole other post by itself!).

-sigh- Yep, NOW it is raining. -sigh-

Saturday, May 24, 2008

11 years!

Happy Anniversary to us! 11 years ago today was our wedding day. I can't believe it has gone so fast. Here's to another wonderful 11 (and more!).

Today has been awesome. We got up early and went to the temple then out to lunch. We're now at home relaxing (such a rarity!). Next, DH has some sort of present! Yippee! :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Good and Bad

Today I woke up at 4:40.

Good: My body is being trained to be ready to go work-out at that horribly early hour.

Bad: This morning was our day off this week and I was supposed to sleep in until 6:00! UGH!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

No (wo)man is an island

Yesterday was horrible. Today was great.

I realized how very grateful I am for the support of other women in my life. I started out this post with three...then four...then five...and so on. There are too many women to thank and be grateful for. Today, however, I want to express gratitude for a specific few (I tried to keep it to 5...but, as you really is 6!). These are in NO PARTICULAR ORDER, just the order that they popped into my head.

I could NOT live my life without your support. I could NOT accomplish all I do without the strength of those around me. THANK-YOU.

Woman #1: My friend, J, a.k.a. The Relief Society President. I sit back with awe at the great love and wisdom she shows as she leads us by the Spirit. She is one of my favorite people and I look up to her so much. She is wise, loving, patient, organized, an awesome mom. Thanks for your love and guidance!

Woman #2: My friend, S, a.k.a. My Sister. My sister is my best friend, ever. I can totally be myself with her and I know she won't ever judge me. I can cry to her (something I can only do with one other person). She doesn't get bugged if I call her every second. She loves to talk me through all my silly thoughts and feelings. Thanks for your love and concern!

Woman #3: My friend, JK, a.k.a. Work Out Buddy. JK faithfully gets up to meet me at the gym at 5:15 in the morning, even though her best time would've been later. She motivates me to work harder and, boy!, do the hours and calories fly by when we chat. She is also such a great balance to me. Our personalities are so different and she makes me better as I try to be more laid back like her. Thanks for your love and consistency!

Women #4: My friends A and Nikko, a.k.a. Best Texas Friends. A was out of town this past week. Oh, how I missed her. She is my sounding board for everything. She is my cheerful voice of reason when all seems to be going down. She is the other person that I can cry to. Nikko is my stalwart support. She is consistent in her friendship for me and willing to do anything for me and my kids. She doesn't mind my calling just to chat even when it might not be the most convenient time. Thanks, guys, for your love and support!

Woman #5: My friend, TxMommy, a.k.a. Super Mom. TxMommy is such an example to me. She is so fun. She is so creative. She is so laid back. She is so observant. She is the best mom the world has ever had. I look up to her so much. She is also very wise. I value her friendship a great deal more than she knows. Thanks for loving me and teaching me!

This doesn't even begin to cover them all! There are so many others that I could go on forever. I have so many friends in this ward. I have awesome visiting teachers. I have so many friends throughout the country. I have such great extended family. I have so many women that support me and take care of me. I cannot do it alone and, tonight, I am grateful that I am not an island! :)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Tough Love x2

Tough Love #1:

It is tough to love a sports team and watch them lose.

It is all over. The Jazz lost last night. Perhaps I knew it was going to happen, as I haven't once posted about this series like I did the Houston one. All I know is that while we are so sad and wish it weren't so, in many ways I am glad: I am glad to get my evenings back (particularly all those games that end after midnight!) and I am glad that they played well enough to make it to the second round. We started off discombobulated last night. DH thought they were lackadaisical, but I interpreted them as trying too hard. It doesn't help them that one of their superstars wasn't. His points DECREASED in the playoffs. That shouldn't happen to all stars. A game or too, sure, but EVERY game? It is sad. is all over. Farewell Jazz.

Tough Love #2:

LD had to have a lesson in tough love from me this morning.

He is so strong willed. He has been throwing huge tantrums at every meal. I think it is mostly because it is my idea to call everyone to come eat, not his. He hates his high chair, but won't sit still in a regular one. He refuses to eat even his favorite foods until the rest of us are almost done eating and he finally realizes I am serious.

Well, for months he has been able to unhook and take off his own tray. This has been part of his tantruming. He takes it off and throws it on the floor. What a protest, eh? This morning, I decided it was time for him to learn. I know the experts say that Time Out doesn't work until they are two, but I had to do something, so I tried it. We use our laundry room with the door shut and the lights off for time out and call it "The Dark Room."

So, I warned him that if he threw his tray again on the floor that he would have to go to the dark room. He did. And, he did. I shut the door and set the time for a minute. I let him out, hugged him tightly, told him not to throw his tray and warned him again what would happen if he did. And, he did. And off he went to the dark room for a minute again. Let's just say it only took those two times. He understood and did not throw his tray on the floor again. He did refuse to eat, but no more trays on the floor.

And, he ate wonderfully at both lunch (he was probably STARVING) and dinner. No tray throwing. I have no doubt that he will visit the dark room again, but for now...tough love and I are friends.

Follow-up: It is now Thursday morning. He has NOT thrown his tray once since the dark room on Saturday! He has not even refused to eat like he'd been doing for a couple of weeks. I guess he is a fast learner. :)

Friday, May 16, 2008

First Karate Belt Test

This post is overdue. C took his first karate belt test last Friday. He has a private tutor and I didn't even know until we showed up for class that his test would be that day. One thing I surely did not know until C started karate is that there are so many different schools of karate. I knew there were a lot, but I had NO idea there were so many. His teacher does different schools and we were supposed to choose one, but I never she just did. In this school, little kids keep their white belt and earn stripes for the belt. Then, when they earn their black stripe, they jump to the adult yellow belt and proceed from there.

C is really good at karate. I didn't know he had such a talent. His teachers are all so impressed with his abilities and he is only six! He hates to practice, but really enjoys the classes.

So, he did his test for his orange stripe. He performed so well, although I could tell he was very nervous. I was so proud of him. His next test will be next week and he has to break a board. I'm more nervous about this than he is. I guess they don't practice beforehand. They just do it while taking the test! Crazy! Good work, C! Keep it up!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


It has been a busy week. But, when is it not? One of my best friends says that I just make myself busy. At first, I didn't agree, but after much reflection, I suppose it is true.

  • I chose to go to my kids' awards ceremony at the school, even if it was pretty rinky-dink and not that well planned out.
  • I choose to go workout at 5:15 in the morning.
  • I chose to accept a calling in the Relief Society presidency and thus I choose to attend weekly presidency meetings and frequent Enrichment Committee meetings, as well as visit new sisters, help with visiting teaching, etc.
  • I choose to help with the stuff I can do for the clinic so that DH doesn't have all of the burden of running our own business.
  • I choose to maintain some semblance of order and cleanliness in my home.
  • I choose to plant and maintain a garden, as well as cut, edge, water, and fertilize our lawn.
  • I choose to help out a friend and neighbor by watching her children.
  • I choose to cuddle and read books with LD before he takes a nap.
  • I choose to have the big kids take turns helping me cook so I can spend time with them and they can learn a very valuable skill.
  • ETC

Along these thought lines, I just decided to look up some quotes from General Authorities. I wanted a barometer. How am I doing? Is it bad to be busy? Here are some quotes that I found:

Elder L. Tom Perry (in this talk) stated, “These are busy, busy days for you. I have seen women in all kinds of circumstances—.....but it is my opinion that … Mormon women are among the hardest working women in the world. They plant gardens and they bottle the produce; they sew and bargain shop. They go on the heart fund drive. They take dinners to new mothers and the sick in their neighborhoods. They take care of aged parents. They climb (mountains) with Cub Scouts, go to Little League games, sit on the piano bench while Jennie practices, do temple work, and worry about getting their journals up-to-date. My heart bursts with pride when I see them come into church on Sunday, some as early as 8:30 in the morning, their children all clean and shiny, their arms loaded with supplies, as they head for classes where they teach other women’s children. They scrub their houses with little or no domestic help and then try to be the glamour girl in their husband’s life when he arrives home at night. But remember, my dear young friends, that you are now doing the work that God intended you to do. Be grateful for the opportunity”

President Gordon B. Hinckley (in this talk) stated, "Someone has said: “Be kind to the women. They constitute half the population and are mothers to the other half.”
My dear sisters, you marvelous women who have chosen the better part, I stand in great admiration for all that you do. I see your hands in everything.
Many of you are mothers, and that is enough to occupy one’s full time.
You are companions—the very best friends your husbands have or ever will have.
You are housekeepers. That doesn’t sound like much, does it? But what a job it is to keep a house clean and tidy.
You are shoppers. Until I got older I never dreamed of what a demanding responsibility it is to keep food in the pantry, to keep clothing neat and presentable, to buy all that is needed to keep a home running.
You are nurses. With every illness that comes along, you are the first to be told about it and the first to respond with help. In cases of serious sickness, you are at the bedside day and night, comforting, encouraging, ministering, praying.
You are the family chauffeur. You are driving your children about on paper routes, taking them to athletic events, driving them on ward outings, hauling here, there, and everywhere as they pursue their busy lives.
And so I might go on.

Well, you dear women, I say thanks to you. Thank you for being the kind of people you are and doing the things you do. May the blessings of heaven rest upon you. May your prayers be answered and your hopes and dreams become realities."

Finally, President Faust stated, "Some of you sisters may feel inadequate because you can’t seem to do all you want to do. Motherhood and parenting are most challenging roles. You also have Church callings that you fulfill so capably and conscientiously. In addition, many of you, besides all this, have to work as well as care for your family. .... In general you noble sisters are doing a much better job of holding it all together and making it work than you realize. May I suggest that you take your challenges one day at a time. Do the best you can. Look at everything through the lens of eternity. If you will do this, life will take on a different perspective."

Sorry. That is a novel. I guess it is what I needed to hear, since so much came up when I researched this topic. I guess it is okay to make myself long as I have the lens of Eternity to judge my choices by. So...tomorrow, I will choose to be busy again! Isn't it wonderful?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all the awesome mothers out there. Thanks to a Grandma who is such an inspiration of faith and dedication. Thanks to a mom that loves me unconditionally. Thanks to a sister that is my shoulder to cry on. Thanks to a mother-in-law that exemplifies quiet service and beauty. Thanks to sisters-in-law that make me always feel included. Thanks to great friends that teach me how to be a better mom through their examples.

Most of all, thanks to a Heavenly Father that blessed me with this calling of all callings: Motherhood!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Whirlwind, Tornado, Destroyer.

What do they have in common? They all fit LD perfectly.

He is in such a horrid stage. I have had permanent marker all over my monitor not once, but twice in the last 24-hours. Mind you, all markers are kept above the height of MY head. He is such a climber and so good with his hands that he can figure his way into anything! He takes apart both of my vacuums on a regular basis. He wants to play in the fertilizer, spray vingear on his face, empty all cupboard and totes and closets in the entire house. He moves 2-3 objects over to climb on the counter to reach the cookies that are way too high and way out of reach. What a mischevious little guy.

Since I am a mom, though, I hope that:

The marker means a budding artist.
The climber means a budding athlete.
The taker-aparter means a budding mechanic.
The fertilizer means a budding gardener.
The vinegar means a budding house cleaner for some very lucky wife.
The emptier means a budding organizer.
and the thought process to manuever 2-3 items to climb on to reach the cookies means a very smart "cookie" indeed.

I love him to pieces...but I just needed to vent. If anyone wants their houses torn apart faster than you can turn around...I'll rent him out to you by the hour (not that it would take that long.)! :)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

In the words of a song...

"My God is an awesome God."

Need I say more?

Teacher Appreciation Week

It is Teacher Appreciation Week and I am the Room Parent. Being as non-creative as I am...I thought this would be a huge expensive chore. Not so much. I am so pleased with the ideas I came up with for C's teacher...and I thought I'd share in case anyone would like to copy.

Yesterday: I took in a bouquet of flowers with a little card (a poem) that I wrote plus some homemade Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. The kids signed the card, then we hid it in the classroom and played Hot-Cold with the teacher when she came back in.

Today: I sent C with a candy bar card. It turned out soooo cute! (Another poem)

Tomorrow: I bought her favorite kind of soda and I'm going to attach this poem I wrote:

Dear Mrs. J,

I’d like to leave you with this soda can…
To help you remember I’m your #1 fan.

Each time you reach to take a little drink,
A memory of me I’m sure you will think.

You’ve cheered me up every time I felt low

And you mean more to me than you ever will know.

And now that the grading is almost all done,
Thanks for this year, it sure has been fun!

Love, and then I'll have each child sign their own name and each one will tape it to a can of soda. It should keep her stocked up for a couple of weeks, at least!

Thursday: I have a picture I took of the class last week on the field trip that I had printed. I bought a signature mat to go with it and had each child sign that also yesterday when I was in. I'm going to wrap it all up and send it with C (so I don't have to go back in.).

Friday: The teacher will be I'm not doing anything else.

I decided I must've been a little poem happy since they all turned into poems. Oh well...I am so pleased that the ideas turned out cute and that they weren't too costly and that it makes the teacher feel important. After all, they have our kids for seven hours a day!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

NBA Update #6--It's Over, BABY! :)

We're going to LA! That is going to be a tough match up...but we're out of the first round! Yippee! :) Williams was AWESOME! Go Jazz!

Utah Jazz: 4, Houston Rockets: 2

Happy DH: 4, Grumpy DH: 2

Happy Family: 4, Frustrated Family: 2

Games ending after midnight: 3 (But, who cares? We WON!)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Field trip, Activity Days, and Yummy, Yummy, Yummy.

Yesterday I had the privilege of accompanying C on his field trip. We went to the Botanic Gardens. It was really neat to be there with him and his class. It was actually my first field trip with him. Last year (Kindergarten), LD was too little to be left with someone else (NO SIBLINGS ALLOWED!...A rule that I hated at first (In K's old school, sibs could come), but for which I am grateful now as I get to focus on the child I am with rather than his/her little brother). This was the first and only trip for this year and I was lucky enough to be chosen to chaperone.

Then, also last night, K had Activity Days Recognition Night. It was fun. All the girls have such various personalities and talents. Her friend, S, got to come with her parents and that was nice, too. Although, they got to the church and people were asking them which ward they needed. They had no clue what they were talking about! :)

Finally, I found this recipe earlier this week on someone's Menu Monday. It looked so delicious that I had to put it on the menu for this week! It was worth every penny. Yummy! Yummy! Yummy!

Life is just so exhausting. This new calling really eats up my time. I know as I work on balancing everything that it will all fall into place, but....there is just a lot to fit into each 24 hours that I have been given, especially when I have a DH that works so much and so hard!