Wednesday, April 28, 2010

To the Table

Lately I've been reflecting on friendship.
And how much I really love my friends.
Every friend we have brings something to the table.
They contribute something to our lives.
A good sense of humor. A positive attitude. Words of inspiration. Encouragement. Insight. A good listener. And then there are those that are just easy to be around.
It's got me thinking about myself as a friend.
Sometimes I think I'm concentrating so hard on being a better wife, mother, primary teacher, housekeeper, cook, etc., and not enough on being a better friend.
So I'm asking this of you, blog readers.
What do I bring to your table?
What is it about me that makes you want to keep me in your life?
I know, this is a little self-indulgent on my part.
But I'm curious.
And yes, family, acquaintances, and those I've never met - this means you, too :)
By the way - isn't that a fabulous table I put at the top? Love.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


Every month for the last 6 years, my 8 best friendies and I get together for our monthly GNO (girl's night out). This month Janie planned and we all went up to Midway and stayed overnight in a condo.
Our hubbies were all so great to let us have a little get away together - it was so needed and we had so much fun!
Here are some pics I stole from Amy's blog:
Janie, Amber, and Shauna at dinner

Me & Amy - apparently my head is massive! We must've looked at this picture a thousand times and laughed our guts out. Julie & Crystol - if you ever want to witness hair perfection, these are your gals.

Crystol, Janie, Amber, me, Julie, Shauna in the hot tub. I know, we're hot.
The junk food coffee table of shame. We polished off more of that than I'd like to admit.
Saturday was Janie's b-day, so after midnight we had her blow out her candles.
Julie & Amber had to leave in the morning, but the rest of us stayed and hit the outlets in Park City. Perfection!
Some of my favorite things about our little shenanigan-filled adventure:
showing the girls my swimming skills
coon skin caps
Amy's fabulous waffles
PB M&M's
"chicken cutlets"
finally going to bed at 4:30 am
the herd of elephants on the stairs at 7:00 am
leaving our front door open all night long (woops)
the most powerful hot tub jets in the world
being the rowdiest group of completely sober adults in a grocery store ever
never a break in conversation
skinny jeans
Crystol's hand towel
laughing until I was crying (more than once)
feeling rested (well, not rested....more like rejuvenated) when I got home
I love my girl friends. I don't know what I would do without them and our monthly gab fest parties.
I love you guys, and we missed you Abby & Lisa!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Comparisons....I Know, it's Wrong

We all do it.
We compare ourselves to other women - women at church, the gym, the mall, the grocery store, the park, driving down the freeway. Everywhere.
We compare our homes to others in the neighborhood, our friends' houses, houses on TV.
We compare our children to other kids.
And this is where my crazy thoughts have taken me today.
Mya doesn't know what her toes are, and I feel horrible about it.
Lately I've been really struggling with comparing my kids to other kids. I compare Lo to kids in preschool, forgetting she's an entire year younger than most of them. I compare B to every other kid I encounter her age.
Lauren spoke exceptionally early. By Mya's age she was speaking full sentences - we had conversations, she could tell me exactly what she wanted in great detail. Mya grunts. She walks to the fridge or the pantry and grunts.
The comparing has gotten worse lately because I've watched a friend's little girl the same age as Mya and she says SO MANY WORDS!
Drink, please, thank you, shoes, picture.
She knows EVERY animal sound I can throw at her.
Today Mya told me a snake said "rarr", and last week tried to lick the tire on the truck.
I've really been beating myself up about this because it's my job to teach her where her toes are. It's my job that she knows what a snake says.
This has been bothering me for a few weeks now.
And then I realized that it doesn't matter.
Does this mean that she isn't smart? Does it mean that she's stupid?
Of course not!
And at the end of the day, do I honestly care if anyone thinks my small toddler is stupid? No. Because I know she isn't.
And she probably just doesn't care.
It's not like she'll never know what a snake says, and it's not like she'll never know where her toes are. And let's pray she doesn't continue to want to know what a tire tastes like.
There is no child like Mya.
This kid has caused me more heartburn and tears than I'd like to admit, but I wouldn't trade her for the world. She's sassy, determined, independent, stubborn, and - on occasion - the sweetest thing you've ever seen.
She only gives loves when she really, really wants to. And consider yourself special if you get a kiss - those are not handed out to just anyone.
There is a big, special place in my heart for this kid, and I firmly believe that there's a really, really, really good reason she is part of our family. And I'm hoping that stubborn streak is going to come in very handy when it comes to peer pressure someday. Her determination and independence are going to get her far in life. I can pretty much guarantee she'll never take crap from anyone.
And this post has gone on far too long, and I can't think of a good way to wrap this thing up, so have a nice one.
Mya rocks (when she's not licking tires)!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thank Goodness!

Here's a list (you know I love my lists) of things I'm very thankful for today at 5:36 am:

Friends who let you gripe and complain and whine to them and still make sure you know you're not a bad person.
Low fat recipes
A hubby who cooks dinner for me almost every night these days
My flexible schedule
Missionary brothers
Family that is so willing to help us ALL THE TIME
Warm weather
Modern medicine
Red Mango
Lo's crazy prayers
People in our lives who sacrifice their time willingly and with a smile to help when it's needed and ask nothing in return
B's smile every morning when I get her out of bed
Our fabulous ward

And that's all I have to say for today. For some reason the true meaning of gratitude and service are on my mind today. There are some things I really want to say, but probably shouldn't. So I'll just leave it at this.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Memory Lane Part Deux

So I found more pictures that I wanted to post.
Here is Amina. About a week before her wedding we flew to Vegas for a one night shop fest. My feet have never been so sore!
Gorgeous Amina right before she got married
Ahhhh, Bryan and Hyrum in their kilts. Priceless. Bryan learned quickly why women tuck their skirts under before they sit down. He wore it "traditional style" - aka: commando. Because why would a man want to wear underwear under a skirt?

Funnest wedding I've ever been to. This is probably around midnight - we thought this fireplace provided a beautiful background for a lovely pose.

My first (and so far only) trip to Lake Powell. I think it's one of the most beautiful places I've ever been. Such a fun week!
(you can definitely see the 30 lbs I mentioned earlier in my face here)

There was some crazy wind while we were there and the men had to go out and secure the anchors. This is how Bryan's dad (or is it Christopher Walken?) looked after they came back in.

And yes, this is what you think it is. Bryan and his FATHER both mooning a passing houseboat. Like father, like son!

And this concludes my little trip down memory lane. I hope you've enjoyed my past as much as I have!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Memory Lane

Our desktop has a virus or something, so we transferred all of our pictures from the last 5 years to our laptop. So all day I've been re-organizing all of them, and going on a little trip down memory lane.
So here's a few little pre-blogging tidbits. Circa 2005-2006.
San Francisco for our second anniversary. Best trip ever.
The hilarious personality of Mr. Will
Brock would drag this little dog around all day long

Our Christmas card

Bryan mistook this as a picture of Lo and put it in a book for me for my first Mother's Day. It's Will :)

We got to spend so much time with Lexi! Notice the ball of drool settled in her chin - love it.

This kid defnitely helped us prepare for parenthood.

Girl's trip to NYC - our teeny bathroom in the Waldorf, shared by 4 girls. Probably one of the most unforgettable trips ever. Ask me sometime, if you have a minute, and I'll tell you all about it.
Bryan has a crazy knack for getting kids to sleep on him. And then following suit.

Our attempt at having 2 dogs. Sadly, Winnie had to move on to a family more well suited for her craziness after about 9 months with us. No dog has ever been bathed more frequently in their first 9 months of life. Ever.

Another thing I'm going to note is I don't know if you clued in that I didn't put any pictures of myself from back then. Well, I'm just going to say that I'm patting myself on the back big time right now, because I was a good 30 lbs (yes, kids, 30) larger than I am now. Not smaller, bigger. And that is before children.
So, I'm giving myself a big ole WOOT WOOT for that!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Weekend

We started out Easter weekend by going to see "How to Train Your Dragon" with Bryan's family (LOVED IT) on Friday afternoon. Afterwards we went to Shara's and dyed Easter eggs.

Lo insisted that all of hers needed to be pink. All 12. You can see 1 yellow one in there, but it has pink crayon on it. It took some serious convincing to allow Shara to put that one in with the rest.

Here are the girls in their dresses. I opted for super casual sun dresses this year. Even though I'm not the one wearing them, I have a hard time with the traditional Easter poof.

I couldn't get a picture of them standing together, so this is as good as it got :)
And yes, I'm fully aware of B's yellow jeally bean chin.
Sometimes I wonder how I got so lucky to have such cute girls. I know I'm a little biased, but come on! Seriously....

The Easter bunny brough the girls each one of these princess chairs. Mya can't get enough of them - she spent the day carrying hers around from room to room, and stacking it full of her new stuff. So cute.
Oh, and NEWS FLASH.....did you know the Easter bunny is a girl? Well, ours is, anyway. I was informed of this by Lauren. I guess it makes sense - all of the pastel colors and such. It's a very feminine holiday.

All in all we had a very relaxing but fun weekend. We don't get to spend nearly as much time together as a family as we'd like with our crazy work schedules, so we thoroughly enjoyed every minute of this weekend.
Conference was fabulous - we didn't get to see too much of it because of family gatherings and the kids, but thank goodness for a DVR, right? So I'm looking forward to watching it during the peace and quiet of naptime.
And I have to document this because it was just too sweet.
Lauren has the best primary teachers. They definitely go above and beyond for her class, and she learns so much. She came home last week talking about how Jesus died and was resurrected. She told us the story (in great detail for a 3 year old) of how they went to Jesus' tomb and the stone had been moved away and his body was gone. She talked about the angel that was there, and how Jesus came back and people touched his hands and side. It's amazing to me that she has absorbed this. Sometimes I don't give her credit for what she knows and what she has the capability to learn.
In her prayer last night, she said she was thankful that "Jesus bleeded for us and was resrected". Completely unprompted by me.
I sometimes wish I could freeze her right now. She's so sweet and innocent, and such a good kid. I'm truly blessed to be her mother.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

ALWAYS Listen to Nursery Rhymes

Lo has this annoying bedtime routine where she jumps on her bed, counting the number of jumps, and then for the grand finale lands on her knees.
I'll just clarify right now that I have never condoned this routine. Sometimes, you just don't think some things are that big of a deal.
So you let your kid jump on her bed every night - and every night you tell yourself that you need to put a stop to this routine because it's dangerous.
We all know the story of the 5 little monkeys, right? I should know better.
Weeeellllll, this is what happens when you don't listen to nurery rhymes.
Your kid gets a black eye :(
On Lo's final jump to her knees, she somehow launched forward right into her headboard.
And this is the result.

This is how it looked yesterday morning
And now today
Feel free to show this to your children as a lesson to NOT jump on the bed.
And, again, I have to say.....
Please.....hold your applause