Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Who's in charge here?

For the last couple of years, Jane and I have been in hot competition over charge of this house and it's contents. I figure that I'm in charge, seeing as how I gave her life. She's pretty determined that I'm wrong. I am either completely ignored or openly defied by her about once every ten minutes or so and she feels completely justified. Sometimes I just deal with it and move on, but at least once a day we end up yelling at each other, neither of us willing to relinquish our God given right to be in charge. Imagine two wild animals fighting for alpha position except we are both a stubborn as mules and we never get any closer to resolving the issue. If I leave the room for half a second I return to find that she has given Lizzy permission to have an enormous red popsicle and eat it in the front yard by herself then shown her outside and closed and locked the door. I'm so not kidding.

Today, Jane and Lizzy were "painting" outside. "Painting" consists of 2 cheap brushes, a small bucket of water and the patio as a canvas. I stole this idea from another mom's blog and it entertains the kids almost every day. You should try it.

Anyway... This was a bad idea today for a couple of reasons. For one, Lizzy is sick as a dog and shouldn't have been outside and for another, I was upstairs trying to make some barrettes. All of a sudden I heard the all too familiar banshee scream. This time, it was Jane. I ran downstairs to try to prevent her from coming upstairs and waking Charlie.

Turns out that she had fallen and scraped her knees on the bricks and there was a little legitimate blood. The girls REALLY like bandaids, so we have the general rule that unless there is "red liquid pouring from your skin" you don't need one. I carried her and her sobbing self to the couch while I went to fetch the Hello Kitty bandaids that I bought at Target last week. I searched, but they weren't there. All of a sudden I hear Jane pull it together....

"Mom, you aren't looking in the right place. The bandaids are up there, I know it, you aren't looking hard enough."

"Jane, I've taken down the bins and looked through them, they aren't here."

"Bring them here, I'll find them. Nevermind, (sigh) I'll just come over there."

And then I watch her stand up, walk from the couch to the kitchen and climb up on a stool. She insisted that I put the bins of medicine on the counter for her to go through. And with an air of superiority I get...

"They aren't in this one, give me the other one... Hmmmm. Mom, they aren't here. You'd better go find them upstairs. They must be in the bathroom."

Obediently, I go. I return a couple minutes later with a couple generic bandaids that I scrounged up from the bottom of the vanity drawer. She informed me that they will have to suffice and starts to open them. I wanted to put some ointment on the scrapes since they were pretty dirty, so I told her not to move until I get the Neosporin. When I get back, she's trying to bandage her own wounds...

"Jane! I told you not to do that! Let me put some of this cream on them."

"Fine! But this one goes on this knee here and this one goes over here."

"I think that I know how to put on a bandaid, just let me do it."

"That's too much cream! I don't need that much. You're putting it in the wrong spot, it needs to be more over here! We need another bandaid, this spot isn't covered well enough!"

I tried to keep it together, but I don't take very kindly to a four year old treating me as though I'm so incompetent that I can't successfully adhere a bandaid to a knee.

As soon as I finished, the tears began again.

"Mooooooooom! I feel horrible! I neeeeeeeed you to caaaaaaaarry me!"

"Fine, but I'm taking a picture first."

the invalid.

Monday, April 27, 2009

I'm dreaming of a white kitchen

It's actually happening...

We are giving my kitchen a much wanted (no, it isn't "needed") makeover. This is the easiest makeover ever. Since we have an IKEA kitchen, it's just off with one door and on with another. I'm bordering on giddy about it. I LOVE white kitchens and because I'm a snob (I figure I must be), I couldn't allow myself to be happy without one.

I'm painting the interiors of the cabinets with glass doors this blue color. Pretty, eh?

And as I was taking pictures, I started to wonder if my newly acquired Costco flowers might be behind Lizzy's absolutely miserable allergies. She's been coughing, gagging, sniffling and crying all day. Poor baby. I thought they might add a "homey" feel to the tools, debris and folding table as a makeshift countertop, but now I feel bad.

On another note, Charlie really likes bouncing. He's been sitting in the jumper bouncing and bouncing for like half an hour now. It's fabulous.

p.s. - if you or someone you love/like/tolerate is in the market for the used IKEA doors and hardware that are pictured, let me know. They are dirty, they have two sets of holes drilled in them from when we changed the hardware they are beech colored, they are now discontinued (so you can't get anymore to match) and they are cheap.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It's coming....

We've been getting a little taste of the upcoming summer and it has reminded of some of my favorite things about warm weather.

It's wonderful how much time the girls spend outside. They are happy, I'm happy and for some reason, I almost never mind it when they get filthy. I enjoy seeing all the dirt wash away each night in the bath, followed by everyone crashing after a long, wonderful day.

I also love when the girls just hang out in their swimming suits which facilitates their running through sprinklers at every opportunity. They also look fabulous paired with boots. This is Lizzy's "cheese!" face. We might have to work on that.

Crusty faces, pink cheeks, wild hair, sundresses, popsicles, flip flops, late nights... is there anything better than kids and summer?

And I'm giving myself about 2 weeks of 90 degree weather before I start complaining about the heat and wish that it were fall.

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'm not a regular mom, I'm a cool mom

Sometimes, I wish that I were a fun mom. You know the type, the women that seem to have endless time and energy to play with their children, decorate things with them, build things with them actually make the things that they see in Martha Stewart Kids and other equally idealistic and unreasonable magazines. They must design their lives around making life fun for their kids.

No, I am not a fun mom.

I've decided that it's because I'm too selfish. I want to be able to do what I want to do too often. I'm ok with it, they'll get over it. Children are incredibly resilient, thank goodness. Most of the interactions I have with the girls involve telling them to stop bothering each other, stop bothering me, stop making messes, start cleaning up and other similar not fun things. One of Jane's favorite lines (that I hear about 20 times a day) is...

"Mom! I'm NOT having ANY FUN!"

I've told her that I don't try anymore because she never has any fun and I've actually found that when I use reverse psychology on her and tell her that I'm going to try to do everything that I can make sure her day is as boring as possible, she goes out of her way to have as much fun as possible. It's amazing. Does that kind of manipulation qualify as child abuse?

Every so often, when I'm feeling particularly energetic, I make an attempt to do something fun and then I take pictures of it to post on my blog so that anyone that sees it will think that I do that kind of stuff all time. I'm deceiving them all.

I don't know if was the sun or the fact that I'm feeling well rested after being able to put a long week behind me with a great night's sleep last night (comparatively speaking, always comparatively speaking), but today....I was feeling fun.

So I thought to myself "what does a fun mom do?" and it came to me that I've seen a lot of women post about these muffin tin lunches that they make for their kids. If you're a little behind the fun mom times, you fill little mini muffin tins with different foods so that your children can enjoy a full shmorgasbord of little kid food AND eat a nutritious lunch without noticing. Kids are such suckers, they'll eat just about anything as long as it looks cute, that is until they have time to realize they don't like it. This is why you limit the intake of each item to a couple of bites and provide lots of items. Brent and I used to use that trick on Lizzy when she was on her hunger strike last year. We'd give her a nibble of cheese, and spoonful of yogurt, a single fishy cracker, etc., until we hoped she'd had enough food to keep her alive. Where were the fun moms and their muffin tins then? Huh?

But I digress.

I don't have the necessary mini muffin tins, but I did have these silicone ones that my grandma gave me and while it didn't provide nearly the number of options I would have liked, it looked pretty.

They even got a whole hearted "WOW!" out of Jane when she saw what she was eating for lunch.

And the girls ate pretty well too.

Success! Until next time, Fun Mom. Right now, I've got to get back to being boring.

I feel alive again

We had a fun weekend full of outdoor activities. It's about time it warmed up around here.

Brent started building my island for my kitchen.

The girls really like the construction phase.
(now I'm all worried that it's going to take too much space)

Brent took the girls to the zoo

not that you can tell from the photo, but trust me, they were there.

Afterwards, Brooklyn came to play.

A year ago, when we moved, I was really bitter and just missed my old house. At this point, I've gotten over it and the only thing I really miss is living across the street from Brooklyn (and her mom, of course)

They love her too.

Charlie also enjoyed the warm weather.

We invited ourselves to dinner at Leslie and Cameron's house on Sunday. It was de-licious. After dinner and several of my perfected homemade oatmeal cookies, we decided to walk off some of the calories.

I love walks in the evenings. This time we headed for the Daybreak temple, it's almost finished.

Ben was there too and cute as ever, just like his little brother...

We tried.

We had a really nice weekend, hope that you did too.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Happy Birthday Lizzy

Today, Lizzy was successful in her attempt to turn two.

Birthdays mean a lot more to me as a mother. I always think of what I was doing however many years ago on that very day...

Funny that I thought she was going to look like me :)

My tiny little girl has certainly flourished. She's not a runt anymore.

Jane specifically requested that we have a "feast" for her birthday. I'm not that good at preparing feasts, but I tried, wanting to make the day a little special. Lizzy just wanted her rainbow jell-o and a cupcake.

(I took photographs to document my attempt)

We love Lizzy SOOOOO much. She is the sweetest, funniest little thing. I can't even think about her without smiling, can you blame me?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


My basic nature requires that I live with a great deal of regret and being the mother of three children triples the amount of regret that I live with. One of my biggest regrets as a mother is that I didn't pierce my girls' ears when they were babies. I know, it seems dumb, but I knew that they'd want them pierced eventually and it's so much easier to just do it as babies, I should have just done it then. Now I've created problems.

Jane has been desperate for several months to get her ears pierced and I told her that she could do it whenever she wanted to, but she was terrified. I don't blame her, the thought of forcing two more holes into my head isn't a pleasant one for me either.

In an effort to appease my guilt and satisfy her apparent need for adornment (that's a word, right?), I made her several pairs of clip on earrings. I felt like quite an attentive parent. She would wear them as long as her little ears could tolerate them, but they pinch! I can't imagine that piercing them hurts any less that clipping those things on.

Finally, Saturday morning, she must have had enough because she came in our room, woke me up, and with a look of utter and complete determination said

"Mom, I'm going to get my ears pierced today. I'm gunna do it."

I didn't take her seriously because I was sure she'd bail. She didn't. I held my word and took her to the mall where she bravely sat there and took the pain like a pro. Not a flinch and not a tear. That's saying something, coming from Jane who cries at the drop of a hat.

I'm actually really proud of her for going through with it, bravery isn't her strength. Now I just have the rest of my life to regret that I've been raising her to allow her vanity to motivate her that much. Oh well. I'll worry about that another day. She's stinking adorable.

Monday, April 13, 2009

My Apologies

I am sorry to everyone else in the world, but it seems that I have officially given birth to the most adorable boy out there.
Ok, I suppose I might be a little biased, but seriously...

I don't know how she managed this one since Charlie doesn't actually sit up yet.

Brooke is amazing. I stole these from her website, hope that you don't mind! If you are in the Salt Lake area and want/need an awesome photographer, I highly recommend Brooke. You can always link to her from my blog, oliverminie j. photography is in the links on the right.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

It's Raining, It's Pouring

Ok, so it wasn't really pouring today, just drizzling, and it was only for a little while in the morning, but I got the girls these cute raincoats for Christmas and we were all excited for them to be able to use them today.

When I woke up this morning to gloom I figured that it was going to be a designated pajama day (days that I make a conscious effort to be a slob instead of allowing it to happen without my notice), but when my kids staggered their wake-up times over the course of about 3 hours and I had ample time to get them clean and clothed, we decided to venture out instead. I made the girls go outside and pretend to play in the cold rain so that I could try to take some pictures of them, but they both ended up crying and coming in within about 5 minutes. So much for that idea. Lizzy was particularly disgruntled. At least I tried.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

That Darn Cat

We have a cat. Her name is Nina*. Nina is good for a lot of things. She is very useful if you like to be awakened at 4:00 in the morning because she wants to be let outside. She is fabulous at covering pillows, blankets, car seats, bouncy chairs and coats with a carpet of cat hair. She also has a gimpy eye that oozes brown goo sometimes and she likes to rub it on your clothes. But I have to say that out of all her good qualities, the most endearing is her fondness for killing birds.

The birds she kills are always small, unlike our old cat who took out magpies on her good days. Is it just me or does it seem a little cheap to take out something so much smaller than you are? This morning she killed 2 birds and was kind enough to bring them to the door for us. I'm sure it was to make them easier to find, I'll have to thank her for that later. She usually just leaves them in the grass or the playhouse or somewhere for the children to find and poke at and then come screaming.

Lizzy was kind enough to inform me this morning... "Mom! Nina kill birdie!"

the morning's casualties

The kids wanted to go out and play, but I wasn't about to let them out there with two (I'm going to assume) diseased, dead birds hanging out on the porch. I tried to follow Brent's example and pick them up with a shovel to dispose of them. It was harder than it looked. It was like trying to pick up a limp noodle. Lucky for me, one of my favorite people, Brooklyn (more on her later), is hanging out at our house today. She was happy to take care of it for me.


After she also failed to pick them up with the shovel, she took a much more... practical route and just grabbed the little corpses. I gagged, but I'm sure glad she was here to take care of the dirty work.

Nina: bird murderer. This is the face of a cold blooded killer. No remorse at all.

*Our old cat was named Abby. My mom has a cat named Sadie. I will have all cousins with children bearing the same names know that we did not name our cats after your kids, you named your kids after our cats. They all feel very honored. :)

Edited to say: For the record, the reason that I have a cat is because I love her. Yes, she drives us a little crazy, but she is really quite sweet and affectionate. Plus, she still has a kitty face, which is super cute.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

I'd like to bear my testimony of...

For those of you who find me bordering on sacrilegious when I write my testimony posts, this one is for you. Today, I want to bear my testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It seems to me to be a little out of my character to do so, especially on my blog, but I'm going to do it anyway.

What a blessing it was for me to watch/listen to General Conference this weekend. For too many weeks, I've felt as though I've been floating around in this world without anything to hold me down. I have felt lost, without purpose, easily frustrated, easily confused and sometimes downright depressed. I have known that I needed to find my feet and that I needed the Lord to help me find them, but sometimes you get so lost that you don't even know where to start to get back on track, you know? I won't burden you with any more details, but now, more than ever, I think that I understand the misery of damnation. There is nothing more horrible than the inability to progress.

It's hard for me to listen to leaders of this church speak. The words that they speak can just pierce my soul, I feel as though they are reading into my mind, finding all of my weaknesses and insecurities and laying them out for the world to hear all about them. They make me feel so unbelievably inadequate, so small, so insignificant, so weak. It's in my nature, like so many others, to let those thoughts lead me to just give up and stop trying, but I'm trying to fight those inclinations. One thing that I know the Lord has blessed me with is a sense of who I am and where I came from. I know that there is so much more to me than what I have become so far. I know that the Lord has given me great potential and I don't want to let him down by not even trying to reach it.

I still don't exactly know where to start, I still feel incredibly inadequate, probably because I am. But I want, so desperately to please Him. I want to do what He wants me to do. I want Him to know that I've tried my hardest to be His servant. I want to take the inadequacy that I feel and allow it to motivate me to be an improved person, propel me onto a different level of living. Through all of the negativity I feel about myself, I also have a great deal of hope and excitement for what I can become.

I hope that all of you took the opportunity to listen to conference as well... who were your favorite speakers? What touched and inspired you?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I'm Sorry

I know, I'm posting like crazy, but I had to share...
Tonight we put Lizzy to bed and later heard her playing in her room. I saw that she had turned her light on and heard her playing with a book that plays music. We just ignored her since she spends a lot of time playing in her room instead of going to bed. After a while, she started to cry, then scream. I debated whether or not to go in there. She screams and cries every single night and we're trying to stop placating her. Eventually she stopped and I figured she had gone to sleep.

Later, I went upstairs and noticed that her light was still on, that's unusual. I cracked the door to turn it off and I noticed that she wasn't in bed. I looked on the floor... no Lizzy. I walked in the room kind of confused and a little nervous. Not next to the dresser, not behind the door, where the crap did she go? Finally I thought to open the closet.

Turns out that my little baby had locked herself in the closet with the musical book. She had been screaming and banging to get out and I just ignored her. She finally gave up and curled up in a tiny little Lizzy ball on the floor of the closet and was using her doll as a pillow as she slept.

I feel horrible.

When I get a brand new hairdo...

Have you ever noticed how many women blog about their hair? I'm a total hypocrite when it comes to hair posts because if I know you, I'm actually very interested in your hair. Want me to vote on a new style? Yes, PLEASE! Want to show me before and afters? I'm so there.

But if I don't know you, that is, if I have intruded into your private life via your personal blog where you share things that are intended only for your loved ones, I will judge you, harshly, for being so vain as to think that I (the uninvited stranger) care about what color your highlights are this month. Ya, I'm a TOTAL hypocrite...

and I will now proceed to blog about my hair.

I think that every woman should have their thing that makes them feel girly, girls need that. Some do their nails or buy makeup or shoes. For me, it's my hair. I spend a lot of money on my hair. Between the cuts, the shampoo and the products, let's just say that I don't tell Brent how much I spend. I hate to admit that in case you think that it always looks bad. Brent used to work with a woman that was still sporting a mullet or "femullet," if you will. When we found out from her husband that she forked out over $60 a month to keep up that unsightly 'do, we about died. Anyway, my thing is my hair. There will be no GreatClips or SuperCuts stylist anywhere near my brunette locks, thankyouverymuch. I'm one of a trillion women with a head full of insecurities and I think that my hair is my best feature, so I act accordingly.

Considering how much time I obviously spend thinking about hair, I'm surprised to have realized that I've been in a hair rut for the past several years. Observe:

Summer 06'

Summer 07'

Summer 08'

I decided it was high time for a slight modification and made an appointment to go in last week.

Problem is that since I go to such an expensive (and skilled) stylist and I am NOT made of money, I end up stretching out my cuts as far apart as I can get away with, sometimes longer. I know, I make no sense. And the hair stylists are always way cooler, and more beautiful than I am. They are all into fashion and music, they spend the whole hour I'm there talking about the awesome party/club/show they went to over the weekend and what they're planning to do at the gym that night and what cool vacation they have planned, just to start.

Then there's me. The stay at home mom living in Sandy, Utah.

So I before I go, I feel compelled to take hours to prepare myself for the experience. I try to make my overgrown hair look half way decent (so that it can immediately be washed), put on makeup for the first time all week and go through my entire closet in an effort to assemble an outfit that will make me look as fashionable as possible. It does no good. They all see right though me and I know it. Last week when I was there, I had the humiliating experience of being asked what kind of music I listen to. The coolest thing I could think of at the moment was the Killers at which point my stylist informed me that the last time they played here, they performed at Saltair and since he knows the owners (of course) he got box seats and so on. Ya, I get it. I'm not cool.

It's worth it though.

yes, i took this photo of myself and yes, i felt weird which is why i couldn't look at the camera. i don't mind the armpit pic (as i understand they are known) when i'm not the only person in the photo. i'm not even entirely sure you can get a good idea of what my hair looks like.

The reason that I'm moved to the point of posting about by my cut is that I don't really actually have to do my hair. For my whole life, I had board straight hair until Lizzy was born. Since then it's been all wavy and when it is cut this short, it requires only a little encouragement to give me a finished product. It's dramatically cutting down on the amount of time it takes me to get ready in the morning (or afternoon) which I always very much appreciate.

So there you have it. I have just blogged about my hair, several photos included. Judge away. I can take it.