Friday, August 31, 2012


When I was a little girl my parents taught us our phone number by putting it to music. By music, I mean they taught us to sing it. I guess we were having trouble learning it until they put a catchy tune to it and once they did that we were able to easily remember it. To this day I know that tune. Of course, it was back in the day when phones had exchanges and our exchange was "Oliver". That may mean anything to some people but it stands for the O and L or the 6 and 5 on the phone dial/punch pad. At least I think that's the correct interpretation.

Today, in my little two student pre-school we took on the telephone number. Let me just say that I understand why my parents resorted to adding a tune to it. I was prepared to have them learn it with a tune but wanted to see how they would do without it, first. The difference was remarkable--and almost immediate. I think it will only be a day or two until they have their phone number memorized. Had I tried to have them memorize it without music I know we would have been at it for much longer.

There is much wisdom in learning from the lessons of others and not trying to re-create wheels on our own. The other thing that struck me is how much music makes a difference in our lives. My children have always gone to sleep to music. It calms and soothes them. Now it teaches them.

I have loved music in many forms~~but in the simplest tune my parents taught me as a child I was given the security and safety of knowing I could call always call home if I needed to. Thank you Dad and Mom, I love you.

Thursday, August 30, 2012


It was a busy day. Got up and did a few things with the kids. We worked on the alphabet and then I let them play on their own while I made lunch. I did the laundry and got 2 miles in on my treadmill. I also watched my niece and nephew, fixed dinner, went to Carly's soccer game, took the kids to visit my brother-in-law's fire station so they could see the new fire truck he bought and then came home to watch the speeches at the RNC! All in all it was a good day and I got lots of things accomplished but I am bushed! Night all.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


I got ambitious this morning and started my own little pre-school with my children. Carly's pre-school went out of business and Jono can't go anywhere he could pick up germs so I decided this might be easier to do myself. Today we worked on the letter "A" and learning what a "week" is. You know--Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday . . .

They both already know how to count to ten. Well, actually they can count higher than that. They can also sing the alphabet, though we have to work on recognizing numbers and writing them. They know colors and are pretty good at shapes.

Mostly, what they wanted to do was use scissors and glue. I found that they are actually dangerous with scissors--even when being closely monitored--especially Jonathon! I've got to find some activities/creations that don't involve scissors or really even glue if possible. They liked making something to help them remember the days of the week.

Now, if I could only figure out how to make something that would help them remember to mind their mother . . . ;)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Well, the kids had to call Julie this afternoon because they missed her so much. They really are having a hard time adjusting to life without her in the house. Julie is enjoying her classes -- even the homework so far.

Jono had a soccer game tonight. His breathing was enough better that we let him play. He never stayed in for very long at a time. Lot's of breaks--and he did fine. He is getting more comfortable with the ball--and he stayed pretty close to it tonight. He had team and individual pictures taken tonight. I didn't like the team one they took but I think the individual one will turn out cute.

It was 98 degrees here today! So hot. It didn't start to cool down until after 7:00 p.m. this evening and even then it was pretty warm.

Well, not a ton more going on here. We have the kids down so think we will head to bed. Wow, it's even before midnight! Yay!

p.s. I'm including this photo of Jono that Megan took a couple of weeks ago. It's a litte blurry but I LOVE IT! It really captured his personality!That's my boy!

Monday, August 27, 2012


I had Carly hair done a few weeks ago. It's a pretty intense process to have your hair braided, especially if you're a little girl. It involves a lot of time, a lot of sitting still, some pulling and once in a while some pain. Carly is really patient and tries so hard to be good. The last time I had it braided which, like I said wasn't long ago, it went frizzy really fast. I called the lady who did it a few days ago to ask what I could do to keep it from doing that and she wanted to look at it. When she saw it today she immediately insisted on re-doing it. Well, it took a little over an hour to take it down and then about 3 hours to braid it again. It's darling and Carly loves it. I'm just hoping it will not frizz this time--well, at least for awhile. Isn't she cute?!


Sunday, August 26, 2012


Is it really only Sunday night? Wow, it seems like a long time since we dropped our eighteen year old off at college. This has been a lot harder than I imagined - O.K. maybe not. I knew it would be hard. I miss Julie really bad.

I think the thing that has surprised me is that she hasn't called much. This is our little girl who had to hug and kiss us and tell us she loved us every night before bed. And all of the sudden -- almost nothing. I've messaged her a couple times and she did message me tonight but it is such a change. I think I am having Julie withdrawals. No, I know I am having Julie withdrawals! I miss my little girl-it is hard to believe she is all grown up and gone.

This really isn't about missing her help around the house or with the kids (although, I do.) I just really miss her. :(

Jules, I miss you and I love you. I'm glad you are having fun, making new friends and are in the place you really want to be. I'm thrilled you are happy! That makes me happy-but know you are missed.
I love you, Mom.

Friday, August 24, 2012



Wow! Look at those! Awesome!

BATMAN Cupcakes! So cool!
And a Spiderman Costume! I LOVE Super-Heroes!

Plus a chocolate cake for me and my Daddy to share!

Look, I'm three! This is how you say it with your fingers!

Thursday, August 23, 2012


It finally happened. The day arrived . . . we took Julie to college~and left her there. That was really hard on me. Harder even than I thought it would be. It was easier for her. She was so excited. She had 5 darling roommates to get to know and a fun weekend of new student orientation ahead. Although, she did wake me up this morning with a text just before 8:00 to tell me she'd been exploring the campus and what fun things she'd found. I love my Julie. I already miss her so much. It has been a hard day's night. I have a feeling it is only going to get harder from here. Lol.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


A Ringleader, that is! So proud to say . . . that's my boy! 
He's a face-puller. Come on guys--feelin' the peer pressure yet? Let's do this!

That's the way. Make a face! Everybody pull!   

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Today is Rob's birthday! We did a lot of things today but not much focusing on him. We were busy getting Julie ready to go and then we had Jono's first soccer game. Then Rob got called out this evening. He got to open gifts around 10 p.m..Wow, life just gets so busy sometimes. I love this guy more than I can tell you. I don't know what I ever did without him. Happy Birthday Sweetheart! I love you!

Monday, August 20, 2012


But who's counting. Wow, it really has come down to two days left with my first baby girl. She is headed to college. She crawled into bed with me today and we just held onto each other for a long time. I'm going to miss my Julie. To tell you the truth I don't know what I did before I had her and I don't know what I am going to do without her. She has driven me crazy ~ and kept me sane. (Don't worry--I'm sure she would tell you the same about me!) I love her to pieces and I am going to miss her so much I already can't stand it. I hope she's not going to mind too much when I check in with her every hour on the hour. ;) Lol!

Sunday, August 19, 2012


It's been a long weekend. I will have write more about it later. We had a birthday party for Rob and Jono today. Rob's birthday is Tuesday and Jono's is Friday but Jono plays his first soccer game on Tuesday and Julie leaves for school on Wednesday so we wanted to celebrate a little early. We had some neighbor who are friends and Rob's brother and his kids  over for dinner. Grandpa even came upstairs! It was fun.

Well, I will write more later. Night all.

Thursday, August 16, 2012


My cousin sent me this poem today and it really touched me. Maybe because one of my friends posted on Facebook last night about having to put her Dad in an assisted living center and what a difficult time both of them are having with it. I know them both really well and it just broke my heart for them. Anyway, this is a beautiful, thought-provoking poem, everyone should read. Here are it's origins:

When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home in North Platte, Nebraska, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value. Later, when the nurses were going through his meager possessions, They found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital.

One nurse took her copy to Missouri. The old man's sole bequest to posterity has since appeared in the Christmas edition of the News Magazine of the St. Louis Association for Mental Health. A slide presentation has also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem. And this little old man, with nothing left to give to the world, is now the author of this 'anonymous' poem winging across the Internet.

Crabby Old Man

What do you see nurses? . . What do you see?
What are you thinking . . . . when you're looking at me?
A crabby old man, . . . . . not very wise,
Uncertain of habit . . . ... with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles his food . . . . . ... and makes no reply .
When you say in a loud voice . .. . . "I do wish you'd try!"
Who seems not to notice . .. . the things that you do.
And forever is losing . . . . . . . a sock or a shoe?

Who, resisting or not . .. . . . lets you do as you will,
With bathing and feeding. .. . . the long day to fill?
Is that what you're thinking? . . Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes, nurse . . . you're not looking at me..

I'll tell you who I am. . . as I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding, . . . as I eat at your will.
I'm a small child of ten . .. with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters . . . . . . who love one another.

A young boy of sixteen . . . . with wings on his feet
Dreaming that soon now . . . . . a lover he'll meet..
A groom soon at twenty .. . . .my heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows . .. . that I promised to keep.

At twenty-five, now . . . . . I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide . . and a secure happy home.
A man of thirty . . . . . . My young now grown fast,
Bound to each other . . . With ties that should last.

At forty, my young sons . . . have grown and are gone,
But my woman's beside me . . .. to see I don't mourn.
At fifty, once more, . . babies play 'round my knee,
Again, we know children . .. . My loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me . . . .my wife is now dead.
I look at the future . . .. . .. shudder with dread..
For my young are all rearing . . . young of their own.
And I think of the years,. and the love that I've known.

I'm now an old man . . . . . and nature is cruel.
Tis jest to make old age .. . . look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles ... . grace and vigour, depart.
There is now a stone . .. . where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass . . . a young guy still dwells,
And now and again .. . . . my battered heart swells.
I remember the joys . . . .. . I remember the pain.
And I'm loving and living . . . . . . life over again.

I think of the years, all too few . .. . gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact . . . that nothing can last.
So open your eyes, people .. . . .. . open and see.
Not a crabby old man. Look closer .. .. see ME!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Jono has been really cute the last couple of days. He has wanted to say the prayer at meals and at bedtime by himself. His words are getting pretty clear but not always understandable so sometimes we are not quite certain what he's asking for or for that matter when he is winding down to a close. Although, I figure as long as it's coming from a child the Lord is okay with whatever it being asked for because it's coming from an innocent and trusting heart.

It was really funny the other night, though. It was Carly's turn to say prayer as they were going to bed. So, she started and I was helping her. About halfway through, Jono started repeating the same things she was saying at the same times. That did not make Carly happy at all. (We are LEARNING to SHARE. Not quite there yet and it was NOT his turn!) She opened her eyes and glared at him. He looked up and smirked at her. Hmmm. This is not how prayer is supposed to go--thinks the Mom! I asked Jono to stop, told him it was Carly's turn and we started again. Sure enough, there's that mimic saying the prayer with her. I just let it go this time and shortened the prayer. It made me smile, Jono smirk, Carly frustrated ~ and I have to think it gave Heavenly Father a little chuckle to see and hear his little ones trying to communicate with him in this way. :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


My cute little boy. Oh my goodness--my cute, cute little boy. Tonight was his first ever soccer scrimmage with his soccer team. His uniform is too big for him (well, all of the boys uniforms are too big) but he is adorable in it. He did such a good job. I didn't know whether he would follow instructions or go off and do his own thing but he did exactly what he was told. Plus, even at almost three it is so obvious that he is going to be athletically inclined. He is fast and on target--and that is not just a proud mom talking. He really is good. I was kind of surprised at how well he did for being so young. It was so hot out, too--in the upper 90's--even at 7:00 p.m.-so I give all those little boys a ton of credit for being so good.

 It was fun to watch Rob, too, with his little boy. This is the first time he's had a son to do sports with and I could tell he really enjoyed being out there on the field helping Jono understand what to do. It was sweet thing for a mom to watch. It made my heart smile. :)

Rob helping Jono get his uniform and shin guards on

Rob getting Jono ready for his first soccer scrimmage

Jono in his soccer uniform

Monday, August 13, 2012


No doubt you saw all the hub-bub this past weekend when a certain Presidential candidate chose his running mate. Well, no sooner had he made that choice than those mean-spirited commercials portraying that Congressman (now VP candidate) wheeling Granny in wheelchair right off a cliff began to run again here. My little Jonathon was watching TV with Grandma when one of those commercials came on and he was really upset by it. He turned to Grandma, visibly shaken and said "Gamma, fall, her hurt. Gamma, I help you. I get Daddy!"

Mom came and told me about that and how concerned he was for the Grandma in the chair and worried that it might be her. She said he even realized that maybe he wouldn't be able to help on his own so he was going to get Dad to help. I thought that was pretty smart of him. Mostly, I think it's pretty cool how much he loves his Grandma (and Grandpa.) He is a handful at times but really he is a very sweet, kind-hearted boy. And Grandma and Grandpa have him wrapped around their little fingers . . . or is it the other way around. I never can remember. Lol!

Saturday, August 11, 2012


It's been a really strange week and I hate to admit that I haven't been out of the house a whole lot. I did go help a friend with some wedding flowers for her daughter's wedding on Thursday but other than that I have pretty much been home. I haven't really felt that great--not sick really but very low energy and pretty headache-y. I think it has something to do with how hot it has been. We have been in the 90's-100 degrees the last few weeks and I have never done well in heat.

Carly has been bugging, bugging, bugging me to find Gabby's (Douglas) address so she could send her a letter. Finally, today I tracked down the address where she could snail-mail her. Carly was so happy! We wrote Gabby a real letter and she can't wait to put it in the mail. Although, I'm kind of afraid of how crushed  Carly may be when Gabby doesn't actually come over to play and watch cartoons with Carly like she's been invited to do. Then again, hopefully, my four year old's attention span won't be long enough to remember she sent the letter or exactly what she said. I mean, I can always hope, right? It is rather cute--though, she doesn't understand Gabby is a bit of a celebrity and not just someone who can show up at her door and be her friend.

Grandpa has been busy with Alumni fundraising again. But then, you probably know that. He's probably talked to most of you. ;) He is doing really well getting around and he's talking a lot louder than before. Grandma is doing well also. All of us are just trying to stay cool. Not much else happening here. Hope all is well with you and yours.

Thursday, August 9, 2012


Dear Gabby,

I like you so much. Can you come over and play? We could have so much fun together! Can you come over tomorrow? I want you to teach me to do the fun stuff you do. Can I come to your house, too?  Call me, okay? Love, Carly

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


Today was a monster long day. I took Julie down to BYU today so she could look for a job. It's a little over an hour from our home.She doesn't move there for a couple of weeks still but if you want a job as a student you have to get there early and look for one. We took the young-uns with us and wow, that was a trip! Lol! Carly was actually pretty good. Jono was a typical almost 3 year old boy! He was very busy, rambuncious, loud and fast. It's just a good thing there were two of us!

Julie did manage to get one interview and applied for two jobs. She felt really good about the interview and hopefully will get a call for an interview on the other job, too.

Rob is on-call this week and he has been slammed with calls today. It's almost 3:30 a.m. and I am up waiting for him. He is finally on his way home now. I am crazy to be up still but I was too wired from our day to sleep. The kids will get up early and I will pay. :(

The funny of the day is a short conversation Jono had with Grandma this morning. We told him we were going bye-bye and where we were going so he went down to tell Grandma we were leaving. When she asked him where we were going he said "Going to Bye Bye U, Grandma!" Well, pretty darn close. Lol!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012







Sunday, August 5, 2012


It's been a long day and my head hurts so this will be short. It's been a pretty good day though. I taught today and honestly, for the first time, I felt pretty good about my lesson. What was different. I prayed alot, stopped looking at my notes and relied on the Lord. Seriously. I told him He had to teach and asked him to bring the spirit to the class. It was the best class I've had.

Tonight, I told the little ones they could go for a bike ride. They were so excited. We got out on the sidewalk and headed to a friend's house. We weren't more than a block when Carly looked up and saw lightening a good ways off. She said it out loud and that was it for Jono. He climbed up me and wouldn't let go. So there I was with one toddler bike with training wheels with no toddler on it. One toddler bike with a toddler riding it and a new thirty pound growth on my left side with two blocks to go and a storm coming. "Let's go home." I say. "NO!" Says, the four year old. I keep trying to shake loose this new attachment on my left side but it won't budge. I'm now dragging the bike--because it's hard to lean over that far with a weight attached. I can't ride it--I'll break it. My four year old was promised a ride and she's GOING to get it. My two (almost three) year old is terrified and holding my left side hostage. GAH!

Finally, we make it to our friends house just as little raindrops start coming down. We knock on the door and her husband answers it and looks at us really puzzled. As I start to ask for his wife and daughter, he asks me where his wife and daughter are. Apparently, we left our houses at the same time thinking we would meet on the way but took different streets. Jonathon is nearly beside himself and tried to force his way inside for shelter. I pull him out and tell him we will call Dad. I call Rob and ask if my friend has gotten there. He says "No." Now I'm really confused but I just ask him to get in the van and come get us. He calls back ten seconds later and says she arrived as soon as he hung up. In the end, we all found each other--but my arm is sore and I've decided I'm not going on a bike ride again until I've checked the weather report!


Started out doing errands today. We ran into a beautiful black woman and her daughter at Sams who had lovely braids in their hair. I always ask who did their hair. It turned out the mother had done them and offered to do Carly's hair. I was thrilled. She had time today so we rushed our shopping trips and got together with her and she did a beautiful job on her. She is really quick but it took  a lot longer than planned because we had to take out Carly's old braids and they had been in for a while and were really tiny. It took a long time to take those out. At any rate, she looks adorable--and of course, I have not yet taken a photo--so, tomorrow!

Julie had a date tonight with a new young man named James. He seemed really nice and was very respectful to us and to her. They went out with another couple and played croquet and had a picnic. It was cute. But since she's leaving soon I'm hoping it is a one and done. She needs to do some dating at school while she is there. None of this long distance stuff. (Like I really have a say--you know. Lol!) Well nighty night!

Friday, August 3, 2012


I noticed yesterday on a certain social network my sister Sarah was lamenting that she only had 15 days until her daughter Caitie leaves for college. I've been trying hard not to do a countdown myself but it's really difficult when I know our daughters are leaving only 3 days apart. (Thanks a lot, Sarah!) I don't want to constantly remind myself that in less than 3 weeks my oldest baby girl is no longer going be sleeping under the same roof for the first time since I've been sleeping under this roof. (Tears now streaming down cheeks.) And frankly Scarlett--I dunno what I'm gonna do without her. If Sarah lived closer I guess we could cry on each other's shoulder's and start hanging out together--but that isn't going to happen.

In reality, I'm as worried about Carly and Jono's reaction to not having her here as I am my own. They don't know life without her. In fact, Jono gets really upset if he gets up in the morning and she has already left for work and he hasn't had the chance to give her a hug. So--this could be a little traumatic for him. We may just have to figure out this whole Skype thing. I've never tried it but I know lots of people use it and love it. And it's not like she's leaving the country. She will only be a little over an hour away. She just won't be here everyday. Things definitely won't be the same around here without our little Picklehead. (You know, I'm not sure how she got that nickname--but she seems to like it so no harm, no foul. Lol!)

Thursday, August 2, 2012


It's all about Gabby at our house! Have you been watching the Olympics? Well, Gabby Douglas is so amazing! She is the latest, greatest solid gold gymnast and Carly, Jono and well, O.K. the rest of us are head over heals in love with her! We have watched everything she performed and think she is fantastic! Tonight Carly asked me if I thought we could go see her. I told her I didn't think so. Then she asked if we could have her come over and play. Hmmm. Explaining logistics and stardom is going to be a challenge but I think I'm up for it! Hopefully, we will see more of Gabby after the Olympics. Maybe she will pick up some sponsorships! Way to go Gabby!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Today, as a family we took a stand and we did it at our favorite chicken restaurant. We went to Chick-Fil-A for dinner. I'm sure you've heard of the controversy where the owner spoke up for traditional marriage and all of left wing America came down on him and his business for it. The left called for a boycott of Chick-fil-A and even talked of not allowing them to open restaurants in certain cities across the nation--though those cities had to back off that later. That's a simplified version of what occurred but what it comes down to is the fact that this situation is about a whole lot more than chicken and boycotts. In fact, it hits at the very heart of our first amendment rights--first, at our right to freedom of speech and second, our right to freedom of religion.

Dan Cathy, the owner of Chick-fil-A, was asked in a recent interview how he felt about certain issues and he answered those questions. What most angered the left was that he stood up for traditional marriage. They didn't like this at all. It is my personal opinion they were baiting him so they could cause a controversy, but I can't prove it. At any rate, he has the right to his beliefs and opinion and to speak his mind. Dan Cathy is a very religious man -- all Chick-fil-A's are closed on Sundays and he treats his employees well.

For me this has become the camel in the tent argument. For years those who believe in something other than traditional marriage begged and pleaded for tolerance from us. I think to a large degree many of us gave that tolerance--and even love. Then they asked for civil unions--they needed the insurance and security. We said -- we understand, and said 'O.K to those. Then, they asked for marriage because they wanted exactly what men and women who are married have. Many of us believe that is one step too far because we believe marriage to be a sacred union between a man and a woman. It seems now that the entire camel is in the tent and we find ourselves on the outside looking in. We are now the ones who must ask for tolerance of our beliefs--only when we do, there is none. Absolutely none. It is as if they have never been on the other side of this equation--never walked a mile in these shoes. How quickly they forgot the tolerance we gave.

For me, standing in an hour and a half long line in 92 degree heat tonight was not at all about buying chicken or supporting a company I was afraid might go bankrupt if I didn't. For me, standing in that line tonight was standing up and being counted as a Christian, as a daughter of God who is willing to say out loud "I know my Savior Lives!" I Love Him! I read and understand his word and I will not be dragged about by the winds of this world. I know right from wrong and good from evil. Jesus Christ lives and He loves us and he wants us to follow HIM! He wants us to choose the right way not the popular way or the loudest or easiest way.

I don't do lines, seriously, I don't. I will drive out of my way to avoid standing in a line. I'd rather have a root canal than stand in a line. But tonight, I felt privileged and proud to stand up and be counted for Christ--because in my mind--that's what I was doing. This world isn't getting easier, it's getting harder. It's not getting lighter, it's getting darker. Our choices have to be the right ones, at the right times in the right places. As time goes on I feel like we are going to find ourselves forced into more and more of these corners where we have to choose--and I wish all of us Godspeed.

This line outside wrapped around the building and once inside snaked around two and half times. We waited an hour and a half to get our food from 7 p.m to 8:30 p.m. They opened at 10:30 in the morning and had been hit hard all day long. I called another Chick-Fil-A in the mall nearby to see if their line was shorter and they said they were really busy too but were almost out of food! Yay for conservative Christians!

It's a little hard to tell here but this is a view of the line. There weren't really very many people at tables because most were in the lines. The lines were several people thick and snaked more than twice through the restaurant before you could order. All this while the drive-through had two lanes backed up to the street full the whole time!

This is a view of the drive-through coming from two directions and backed up to the street from both. It was almost dark when we left and it was still backed up like this. I feel for their employees. They were working so hard!

Carly, Rob and Jono right as we were getting in line! Still chipper, before our hunger and thirst got pounding!