Friday, December 28, 2007
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Friday, October 26, 2007
- Simone Weil
5 Jan 1786 Jacob NEWMAN
27 Jan 1786 Roxana HAND
29 Jan 1786 Elizabeth WHITTLE
5 Mar 1786 Guri ASLAKSEN
21 Mar 1786 Moses SWAIM
23 Mar 1786 Mary DAGGET
28 Mar 1786 Phebe Ann MORTON
1 May 1786 Thomas RUSSELL
10 May 1786 Jacob RHOADS
23 Jul 1786 Hans SORENSEN
27 Jul 1786 Stephen HOOPES
30 Jul 1786 Mette Marie PEDERSEN
1 Aug 1786 Charity SWAIM
2 Aug 1786 Sarah WILLSON
15 Aug 1786 Rachel A. SHIPMAN
21 Aug 1786 Athalia HOWARD
22 Aug 1786 Samuel WHEELDON
4 Sep 1786 John WELBORN
22 Sep 1786 Julana GEER
24 Dec 1786 Mary POTTS
2 cups white sugar
3 egg whites
3 tbs corn syrup
3 tbs cold water
1 tsp vanilla
Thursday, October 25, 2007
I got my first real taste of this when I helped others edit their fanfiction in a process called "beta-ing". This is really just having someone read and review your writing, but they call it this in the fanfiction world. I love doing it for others and having others do it for me. Even when I've written something I think is good, the chance to make it better is both challenging and exciting to me. I think one of the things about NaNoWriMo that will be most insanity provoking for me is the no editing thing. To have no time for clean-up or meaningful feedback might push me over the edge.
I got a few ideas on the drive home - yeah! I think I have decided on my heroine's name - one I thought I made up, but apparently someone else did too as there is a dragon drawing by that name at Elfwood.com. Anyway, I am going to try and write the required number of words everyday between now and the 1st, to see if I can get myself used to it. Not on The Novel of course, but this and other stuff.
I am sick. Sniffling, sneezing, coughing, stuffy-head, nasty cold sick. I thought I was better, but then yesterday it hit me again with a vengeance. The rest of the family seems fine - thank heavens - but I am wishing for a nice, warm, dark cave to crawl into for a few days. Instead I have 4am feedings and a 4 year old who wakes up at the crack of dawn, followed by her baby brother. Please, let them not get sick. I don't think I could handle it this week.
I do have to say how appreciative I am that they wake up exuberantly - it's hard to be unhappy, regardless of how I feel physically, when I am awoken by two blissfully cheerful cherubs. Even with the hard moments, I truly do delight in my children. I can't imagine a better thing than having them.
Allie asked for the Overnight Butterscotch Buns recipe, so I thought I'd share it with everyone. It has a different actual name, that is just what I call them.
1 (3 oz.) pkg. butterscotch pudding (not instant)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup melted butter
Lara's note: We have theorized that this recipe what could be made with any flavor of pudding and add-ins.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Friday, October 19, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
Last night I dreamed about a dancing, and a friend I had when I was a teenager whose given name was Molly Shenandoah. I always loved her name and it seemed to fit her. Being a child of the 70's in a small Washington self-proclaimed hippy town, I had lots of friends with unusual names - in my 2nd grade class their were girls named Butterfly & Cinnamon and boy named Reefer (no joke). But Molly's name wasn't just unusual, it was lovely.
Molly was tall and pretty and smart. She was a great dancer and she had a boyfriend I wanted (and eventually got a half dozen years later). She was a year or two older than me, thrillingly Californian and very kind.
After she moved, we kept in touch on and off... the odd phone call and Christmas card, meeting up occasionally when she came to town. She was someone I called when I heard at 20 the devastating pronouncement from a doctor that I would never carry a child. Since proved wrong... but at the time as a young newly-wed, very much wanting a baby, I was crushed.
What she said to me was one of the most comforting things anyone said during the following 8 years of childlessness. "Some people are just meant to be mothers, and you are one of them. Somehow you'll find a way. You'll be a wonderful mother."
I dreamed we were taking a modern dance class in the gorgeous room on the top floor of the local YMCA that I taught in for a number of years. She was married and expecting a baby. We were so excited because we were again in a place where our lives matched enough that we could keep up with one another again.
Being one who believes in the power of dreams, got out of bed and Googled her :) She is married, is living in Ohio and had a baby about a year ago! Weird. She and her husband run a spicy pickle company and she works with a local group whose mission is "to educate, support and empower women as they journey through pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period". I think I'll write her this week. Who knows. Maybe it's our time again.
I've joined NaNoWriMo. I'm nuts. But Allie offered home made chocolate truffles. What was I supposed to do? I have NO IDEA what to write. The quote at the beginning of this post was to remind me that I can do this and I need to trust that I can.
BTW, that old boyfriend of Molly's? The one I went out with years later? He introduced me to Allie and after a dozen years she and I are still great friends.
Monday, October 1, 2007
"In my opinion, the teaching, rearing, and training of children requires more intelligence, intuitive understanding, humility, strength, wisdom, spirituality, perseverance, and hard work than any other challenge we might have in life." - James E. Faust
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Thursday, September 6, 2007
I ordered parrot stickers off eBay today as well for our "Pin the Parrot in the Nest" game. I will laminate them on card stock for the kids to use and have my husband (who is an artist), paint a tree with a nest in it on blank newsprint. We're going to limbo and do an octopus ring toss in a kiddie pool.
The chips and bottled water have been purchased - I tried to buy juice boxes too, but Costco was out! Totally and completely out of ALL juice boxes! I'm going to have to get them elsewhere as they won't be in for another ten days or so they said. This weekend I want to fill the pinata and the goodie bags, get the games squared away, wrap Princess' gifts and get the cake ordered. I love parties :) Planning, executing and attending!
Monday, September 3, 2007
We made it through all of church on Sunday for the first time in months and months! I love the feeling of sitting in church with my husband and children, singing hymns my family has sung for generations, listening to the blessings on the sacramental bread and water - the same ones that have been said for generations, relaxing into the rhythm of my spirituality. Granted this is hard to do with the kids in tow, but I love them so much, I would rather do the Sunday Struggle, then imagine my life without them.
For the first time since I joined CU as a professor and then as I continued as the Dean, I created my own degree plans last semester and started working on goals for myself. One of the areas I decided to pursue was the College of Career Enhancement. This college was created so that women in any stage of their lives could work on "enhancing" their career skills, whether they work at home with their children or outside their home.
I'm a stay at home mom. I'm a lot of other things too, but when a blank form asks for my occupation, that is the closest thing to the truth! The first 2 goals I chose to work on were:
- Go to work with a positive attitude all month.
- Express enthusiasm for your job to your boss or co-worker.
These were huge things for me. The opportunity to be reminded daily of how much I love what I do and who I do it for has really changed me for the better. I've taken to telling my husband and my children that they are my favorite job and how much I love to be with them and take care of them... and every time I say it out loud, it reminds me why I chose this "career" instead of becoming a professional ballerina. I love what I do and I know it matters - nothing could be more fun (or more beautifully challenging).
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Saturday is a special day.
It’s the day we get ready for Sunday:
We clean the house, and we shop at the store,
So we won’t have to work until Monday.
We brush our clothes, and we shine our shoes,
And we call it our get-the-work-done day.
Then we trim our nails, and we shampoo our hair,
So we can be ready for Sunday!
Usually, we only get a few of these things done, but today we have a lot of them on the list. When I am done writing this, I'll start the dishwasher, get cleaned up and take Princess shopping with me (mostly returns). Later we'll get the kids washed and trimmed, pack The Church Bag and lay out the clothes for tomorrow morning. Our congregation meets at 9 a.m., which is way too early for me, thus getting there on time takes a fair amount of planning. Each year we switch times with several other congregations that meet in our building and can I just say how thrilled I will be in January when we are meeting at 11 a.m.? Thrilled.
My "to do" list is always too long... this is what I dream of getting done today:
- water indoor plants & the yard
- take Princess outside to play
- dishes done
- read with my husband
- scripture study
- write in my journal
- mail baby presents to my cousin Kate & friend Danica
- get baby present for my friend Patty ready to take to church tomorrow
- tidy house
- read to Princess & Baby Bear
- write a love note to my husband
- delete 100 emails from my inbox
- bake cookies with Princess
- spend some time on my church work
- write some prose (fanfiction most likely)
- write thank you notes for Baby Bear's gifts & Princess' birthday gifts
- art or craft with Princess
- dinner on the table
- write some poetry
- give my husband a foot rub
- work on my family history
- create Fall Semester calendar for CU
- scripture games with Princess
- scripture study with my husband
- list stuff on eBay
- call my grandma & my friend Sabrina
- help Princess decide on something nice to do for someone else
- play World of Warcraft with my husband
Friday, August 31, 2007
Initially she wanted chocolate, but the lure of this white cake with it's bright orange frosting, sprinkles and four plastic sunshine rings was more that she could resist. Our local grocery store, which I love, does all of it's baking from scratch and the cake with light, moist and delicious. Hate the white frosting, but I've never met white bakery frosting I did like, so that was okay. The bakery lady let her choose a color and wrote on it and Princess was in heaven. We also got home from the store with ice cream, strawberry sauce, chocolate sauce, milk & a new matchbox car.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
Thomas H. Huxley
English biologist (1825-1895)
True, isn't it? I didn't get lots done yesterday and at the end of the day, when my daughter was hungry and the baby was napping and the cable guys had been here for a couple hours and my husband needed to be picked up from work, the last thing I felt like doing was being "fun". Yet that is exactly what my family needed me to be. It's interesting that we usually consider the thing we "have to do" as something unpleasant, when it is sometimes a thing we wouldn't mind doing if we were in a better mood or had more energy.
So I did what I needed to do... I packed the kids in the car, stopped to grab dinner at the drive up window of the hot dog stand, picked my husband up and took them to the park. We ate, we played on the jungle gym (yes, all of us - mama even went down the swirly slide), Princess ran through the sprinklers in her new butterfly swim suit and then we headed home. Laundry and dishes and mess still abound, but we all went to bed happy.
Yesterday we decided on a date for Princess' birthday party and reserved the shelter at the park we ate at last night. Today I made my order from Oriental Trading for games, prizes, goodies and decor, including the treasure chest pinata! I also made the guest list and we decided to do messages in a bottle for invitations. I am excited and so is Princess. Usually our parties are not this "store-bought"... but I need the help this year and the shopping is fun :)
Today is her actual birthday and this morning when we woke up I told her the story of her birth as I usually do. Tonight we'll have Hawaii BBQ take out, make a Hawaiian Cake and give her a few gifts, including the coin collecting supplies papa picked out for her on his lunch break today :)
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
So after we got everything planted, I freaked out a little and could only bear to go look at it every few days. I was sure everything was going to die, sure it would be some kind of bad omen for a pregnant lady to kill all her plants! What can I say. Pregnancy hormones can be fun.
With the new baby here, I haven't had much time to care for the garden lately. My husband has helped a lot and kept things watered, but we lost many of our original seedlings. I love being in the garden! It is so amazing to me that you can plant a seed and grow food and flowers on par with what you find in the best stores. Next year I hope we can get started earlier since we've missed our window with most things and won't have much harvest before the weather turns too cold. Our growing season is short here in the pacific northwest!
Monday, August 27, 2007
Change your thoughts, and you change your world.
-Norman Vincent Peale
Saturday, August 25, 2007
The princess wants a "pirate luau", so right now my brain is working overtime on figuring that out. I've already decided to purchase (gasp) a cake from the (gasp) grocery store, which is unheard of in my family. I'm also considering having the party somewhere other than my home, which is too cozy for a handful of toddlers and parents to play comfortably in. The weather has been really great, so a park might be just the ticket. On the other hand, the Northwest is known for raining on parades... so we'll have to have alternate plans if we do that. Why all this deviation from tradition? I have a new baby. He's a great baby, but his sleeping/eating/changing schedule leaves little time for things like creating a pathway through the rubble for guests to hang out at our house or baking birthday cakes from scratch. I am also buying the pinata, but will try and manage to stuff it myself.
We usually celebrate our anniversary at home over pasta (his with lobster, mine with basil pesto). This year we probably continue the tradition of not leaving the house, and our anniversary present lists have been narrowed down to one thing that we both want: a full night's sleep. The other thing we try to do is visit the place we were married around the time of our anniversary. We've only missed a couple years of doing this and I hope we manage it this year. There is something wonderful about visiting the place we made sacred vows with one another and realizing that we both consider it the best thing we've ever done.
There is a lot of reflection for me this time of year. As a kid, I always felt like the year really started in the Autumn and it still feels that way to me. There is a little wiggly-ness at buckling down and getting back to work/school/real-un-summer-life, yet also a thrill at starting again. This is the time that I make resolutions (not January) and try to decide what I want to do with myself and how to make it happen.
Friday, August 24, 2007
I was woken by the princess shaking my shoulder and insisting that I come "fix" the TV. Usually when this happened, she'd pushed a button on the front of our old TV and switched it off the channel that the cable comes through to grey fuzziness, which freaks her out. I moan, I groan, I turn over, and then I get up to rescue her from static oblivion.
After a few minutes of punching buttons, I notice that much of the television appears to be damp. And smells faintly of oregano. Even in my sleepy state, this sets off an alarm, but it's a quiet one. I tell her she'll have to wait for papa to get home to fix it, get out the play dough (yes, my kid gets to play with play dough unsupervised), and head back to bed. I get up for real a couple hours later and inspect the set again. This time, I recognize that vaguely spaghetti-sauce-smelling smell: Sol-U-Guard.
Last summer I got talked into trying (joining) the MLM giant Melaleuca - only as a customer, not as a salesperson - and surprisingly, I've found I really like many of their products. I prefer cleaning products that are not horrifically poisonous to my family or the planet and it's hard to find them reasonably priced, even in the environmentally conscious (obsessed) hamlet I live in. Sol-U-Guard is their botanical disinfectant and it's great stuff. It's pretty non-toxic so I keep a bottle on the kitchen counter for clean up, and apparently the princess is now tall enough to reach it.
When confronted with the evidence, she admitted to helping me clean up the "dirty old TV" with dish towels (which she hid in a pile behind the couch) and the spray from the counter (which she put back). I thanked her and we had a discussion about asking mama or papa for the correct tools to do a cleaning job next time since different jobs require different things to clean them (i.e. do NOT spray wet stuff directly into the control panel of an electronic device).
We waited a few days for it to dry out, but the wires didn't recover. The box was ten years old, so we felt we got good use out of it, but the idea of spending ten times more than the $60 we bought it for in order to replace it made us pretty unhappy campers. I was ready to go to Wal-Mart and buy whatever was on sale and big enough for me make out the picture while sitting on the sofa. I'm pretty irritable when my television (or my Internet connection) isn't working right. My husband remained level-headed and spent a week researching the best options in flat screen home theater systems. When all was said and done, we had 5.1 surround sound and a TV that could be mounted on the wall.
Fabulous! But we really weren't wired for all that, and none of the new stuff would fit in our old entertainment center... so we now have a living room theater with so much extra furniture in it you can't walk without tripping, and enough wiring strewn about to string up a suspension bridge (or alternately trip and break an ankle on). We've tried selling the furniture on craigslist, but despite the fact that it's nice stuff, no one seems to be in the market for it.
So yesterday, the guy who helps us with home improvement projects beyond our capabilities (which is most everything) came to drill holes, get the cables off the floor and start work on remodeling the shelves that will be on the wall that the TV will be on when we get the furniture gone and can actually put it up. S helps him out and finally we think of dinner at about 7:30pm. It would have been earlier except Mr. Fix-it brought his daughter and she was playing out in the backyard distracting the princess. I was feeding baby bear & folding the mountains of laundry which cover almost every surface at this point.
Through the open window I heard the neighbors ordering pizza and lost no time ordering some up myself. I went to pick it up and swung by the store to pick up root beer (Hansen's all natural was on sale and I feel way less guilty when I buy that instead of the "unnatural" varieties lining the 2 liter shelves) and vanilla ice cream (Breyers, with the little black vanilla specks in it, also on sale, so I stocked up). By the time we were eating it was after 8pm, and we finished around 9pm, just as Mr. Fix-it left.
Now, I could have prepared pbj sandwiches for everyone, mixed up some frozen lemonade and left it at that... but some days you have to let the magic in. Eating pizza and root beer floats with my daughter in the warm summer dusk, way past bed time, is one of those moments that I'm glad I didn't let pass me by. There will be plenty of nights ahead for sticking to routines and creating order out of the chaos. Yet as I write that last sentence, I realize that last night was something I want to make sure is part of our lives on a regular basis. I want "order" to mean joy amid the chaos and I want the ability for spontaneity to be "routine" in our lives.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
I've spent some time this week catching up on some of my own favorite blogs and I really do enjoy reading about other people's "stuff" - food, kids, favorite television.I also came up on a sort of photo blog on flickr this week - Matt McGee's 2006: 1 photo/365 days and I had a great time going through and looking at the progression of a year in someone's life, through their lens (no pun intended).
This interest in connections with people you don't know but have something in common with, plus my love of writing is what is motivating me to start this blog. I haven't written much in the last year, but I am hoping this will give me a push to write at least something everyday.
My almost-4-year-old has chewed through our first set of Sipper Seals. I remember doing it myself as a kid (we had the same Bell Tumblers) because there is something seriously irresistable about the combination of semi-hard plastic and child-size chompers. So I went looking for someone to buy new ones from - a Tupperware Lady!
The prices were not outrageous, but I admit to being quite tight-fisted when it comes to shipping costs. It's the only thing I hate about online shopping. I look for coupons, I look for discounts, I take my business elsewhere. Now, the shipping prices listed where not unreasonable... but it's my least, least, least favorite kind. Flate rate, PLUS. The more you order, the more you pay. So I started looking elsewhere and ended up saving a bunch of money on eBay! I love eBay and one of my most favorite things about it is that ith most sellers, the more you buy the bigger the shipping discount. Happy me! I also stocked up on a few Modular Mates (storage containers, not a dating service), since my daughter has decided we need 4 different kinds of cold cereal open at any given time and I hate stale cereal. I considered getting some new ice cream keeper fresher thingys, but apparently they don't make these anymore, so I'll need to spend a little more time on eBay to find some reasonably priced.
My husband came home for lunch and began updating the insurance paperwork to reflect the new addition to our family. Our son is almost a month old now and in the course of the discussion this afternoon, an oft-contemplated-never-resolved topic arose. Who gets the kids, should both parents perish? The problem seems to boil down to the fact that while we are related to and have friendships with many wonderful people who adore our kids, none of them are us. Some live where we would choose to raise our children. Some share the same religious convictions. Some have the same sort of common sense that we have. Some share child-rearing philosophies. Some would treat our children as their own (which could be good or bad). But no one family has everything we desire for and strive to give to our children emotionally, spiritually or environmentally.
We've been struggling with this since our daughter was born almost four years ago and we have yet to put anything in writing. There are periods when I don't think about it at all, and then there are days when it worries me to no end. The thought of leaving my kids devastates me and yet the thought of leaving them without a sure custodian that I trust freaks me out even more. At this point, I'm hoping that my lack of clear direction in all of this is a sign that it won't be an issue any time soon! As my husband said on his way back to work - I guess we need to think a little longer before we decide. How do you choose different parents for your children than the ones they already have?