Widgets Magazine

Apr 30, 2013

Busy Monday

Sport at bat
We had one of those crazy evenings lined up before us. Sport and Curly both had baseball games, Scout, Crafty, and Princess all had dance, and Prima Donna had a concert and rehearsal. The logistics of getting everyone where they needed to be and then supporting them was a nightmare!

I typed up a whole list of instructions for the Dog Walker, so much so that he went into meltdown and I had to rearrange the plan. My second plan had me meeting my sweetie at the concert with Baby Doll in tow. My sweetie put the nix on that plan.

Prima Donna's in there somewhere...
By then I was starting to get a little frustrated, but like any good composer, once more I rewrote the song. I just had to get everybody to come in and out at the right times. I knew it could work, the order just had to be perfect.

We had a breakthrough when the Gym Rat changed his plans and offered to run Prima Donna to the concert at 6:15. Suddenly everything fell into place with only a couple of minor mishaps. The first one came at 4:15 just as the Dog Walker and I were leaving to gas up our vehicles. One of the girls in our dance carpool hadn't been picked up and her mom was in Oklahoma. I sent the Dog Walker to pick her up and drop her at the studio and then meet me at the pumps. I had planned to squeeze in Curves before I taking the boys to the park, but the change in plans gave me only one time around the circuit instead of two (Mishap #1).

Then I raced back to the house, picked up Curly and Sport and we headed for the baseball fields. Meanwhile, the Dog Walker picked up Prima Donna from her last rehearsal before her musical on Wednesday (I'll give you more about that one after we see the show), but they are doing Once Upon a Mattress. He also dropped Crafty at the dance studio, then headed back to the house for a little more homework.

I kept score at Sport's game until his second at-bat was over and then I handed off the book to the team mom. Curly was about 5 minutes late for his t-ball game and he was very unhappy with me. He literally left me in the dust as he took off the hundred yards to his little ball diamond set up by the playgrounds. (That was mishap #2.)

Back home, the Dog Walker loaded up Scout and Baby Doll and headed once again for the dance studio. He dropped off Scout and picked up Crafty and the three of them ended up at the park to watch Curly's game. Right after they arrived, I climbed in my car and drove 30 blocks to the middle school to watch Prima Donna's concert with my sweetie. He went there straight from work. Thankfully, I hit all green lights and I arrived inside the auditorium with 5 minutes to spare.

After Sport's game was over, he walked over to Curly's diamond and then they all piled in the van for one more stop at the dance studio to pick up Scout. Meanwhile, back at the concert, my sweetie and I enjoyed a few moments together without the kids (except that it was a middle school and the seats were way stinkin' small!).

When it was over, I sent my sweetie to the Home Depot for a dowel Prima Donna had to have for a homework assignment and then he drove to Wendy's. I guess you figured that one out too...no time for dinner in this schedule. Prima Donna and I drove to the dance studio, and picked up Princess and her friend from the carpool. I dropped off the girls at the house so they could change while I ran their friend home.

Then it was back to the house to load everyone up in two vehicles (because the big van is still full of charity stuff I haven't had time to drop off) and we made the quick drive to Wendy's. I had some awesome coupons that made it more tolerable, but I still don't like taking 10 of us out to dinner without a celebration of some sort. I just couldn't face another bowl of cold cereal for dinner.

Back home it was no rest for the weary. After scriptures and family prayer, I got the little kids to bed and the Dog Walker back on his homework and then I headed for my sewing machine. Prima Donna needed her banner-sized Coat of Arms to have a backing and a casing put on it so it could be hung from the dowel my sweetie bought.

Finally I can finish my post and head for bed. If we ever manage to finish the Dog Walker's homework...

Then it just might be time for me to take that final bow.

Apr 29, 2013

Choir

I don't think any of you will be surprised to know that I love to sing. When I was in high school I was in Swing Choir and Chamber Choir and when I was a senior I sang at State Choir. It was so cool! We even made a record (that I can't even listen to anymore), but let me tell you, 50 male voices singing Down in the Valley was so awesome. It gave me goosebumps.

So when the girls asked me to join our Church choir with them before Christmas, I jumped at the chance. Normally I don't sing with the choir because it makes getting kids ready for church very difficult, but my sweetie agreed that he could handle it, so off we went.

I loved it! First let me say that I love Christmas songs and singing them in harmony with a group is the best. But after our Christmas program was over, we switched to the 11:00 church schedule and that was the end of choir for me.

She looks more and more like me every day. Poor girl.
The choir director invited me (and the girls) to come back to choir for the Easter songs, but I didn't feel like it was fair to my sweetie so I told him "No." Then right before Teach's farewell, a member of our bishopric approached my sweetie and asked if there was any way that the girls and I could come back and support the choir.

After a very short conversation with my sweetie, we both agreed that this was now an unofficial calling and that meant I would always support the choir if at all possible. So today we got the opportunity to exercise our voices and sing before the congregation. It was a beautiful rendition of Come Unto Christ by Sally DeFord.

I would love to have given you a real picture, but they discourage us from taking pictures at our Sacrament Meetings. Not that they are secret, everyone is invited to attend, but they don't want to make them a media circus and destroy the spirit.

So instead I have a picture of Prima Donna and her cute crimped hair. She is one of my singing buddies along with Crafty and Princess.

I love singing in our little choir. It's not like the huge choir I participated in during high school, nor is it a hundred voices strong, but I give it my best and to my ears it sounds like a heavenly chorus.

Apr 28, 2013

There's Always Laundry

People ask me all the time how I get all the laundry done at my house. The short answer is, "I don't."

There is ALWAYS something to wash at my house. We do have two laundry rooms, one downstairs for the big kids and the one I use on the main floor. Last year my sweetie bought me two huge front loaders and they are so nice! We actually have enough space that he offered to buy me two of each, kind of like a laundromat. I assured him that was a great offer, but it wouldn't fix the problem.

The problem was me! I can only fold so much laundry at a time. Having it wash faster would just make it that much harder. So I continued to do laundry every day, sometimes as many as half a dozen batches a day but then my problem was a pile of clean laundry instead of a pile of dirty laundry. Either way it was an issue.
Even Curly folds his own laundry!

Then one day I had a brilliant beyond brilliant idea...

I didn't have to fold this laundry all by myself! (I know, pretty obvious, huh? It only took me almost 30 years to get it.) So one Sunday afternoon after we had returned from church and the kids were digesting one of my sweetie's delicious lunches, I asked the Dog Walker to haul all the clean laundry into the family room. Then we popped in a Disney movie and I invited all the kids to my Laundry Folding Party.

They were so excited to actually watch a movie they all grabbed their baskets and joined me. The laundry folded up in no time and it was fun to do it together. Now we have a Laundry Folding Party almost every week and the kids look forward to it no matter what we are watching.

Tonight I put in Global Warning from the History Channel because the Dog Walker needed to watch it for his Meteorology class. I had one grumbler at first, but even she was soon fascinated by the lava and the dinosaurs. Sport kept saying, "Be quiet, I can't hear!" He was totally engrossed, but when I checked, his clothes were in his basket and mostly folded.

When we are finished, we turn off the TV and the Dog Walker hauls heavy baskets for the kids and then they quickly put them away. What would have taken me hours is completed during a single movie with smiles all around.

And my smile is the biggest.



Apr 27, 2013

The Treasure Hunt

Last Tuesday was Pack Meeting and if you remember correctly, it's a big huge hairy deal here at my house! My sweetie is the cubmaster and I'm the cubmaster's helper. We had planned a treasure hunt for six teams. I ordered chocolate coins from the Oriental Trading Company and we filled each plastic treasure box carefully.

My sweetie went over to the church early to hide the boxes before the scouts got there. Curly was so excited, he was beside himself! He helped me fill the boxes with all those yummy treats. But while his dad was over hiding the treasure boxes, Curly fell asleep on the couch.

My sweetie came home, changed into his scout shirt, and tried to wake Curly up. But it wasn't happening. Our 4-year-old was out for the count! So my sweetie left him with Princess, dreaming about the treasure hunt that would be long finished by the time he was awake.

Curly finally awoke about 11:00 and of course he was devastated! The candies were long gone, devoured by the cubs and their little brothers and sisters. Not even Sport thought to bring home a couple of coins for a sleeping boy. Curly was inconsolable.

Until my sweetie offered to make a treasure hunt just for him.

So on Wednesday, my sweetie procured a different treasure (we couldn't wait for more gold coins to arrive) and he hid clues around the house for Curly, Scout, and Baby Doll to find. Sport and Crafty came along just for fun. As they ran outside to check for a clue on the trampoline, he stuffed his treasure into a "hot box," or the oven as it is more commonly called.

The kids raced back in the house, searching frantically for the final clues. Their first thought for "hot box" was the dryer (which I thought was pretty good reasoning) until I pointed out that it was a box and the dryer wasn't square. They ran for the oven and discovered several boxes of Dominoes Pizza!

They were beyond excited. We rarely have takeout pizza and when we do it is usually something cheaper, so this was a rare treat. My sweetie grinned as he was once again successful with his treasure hunt. I gave him a big hug on my way to the pantry to find the paper plates. The kids thought they found the treasure, but they were wrong,

I'm the one with the treasure and I found him just about 30 years ago.

Apr 26, 2013

One Sweet Slice Video Contest

Remember last Saturday when I told you we went to One Sweet Slice and enjoyed their cupcakes? Well, I want to tell you the rest of the story.

While we were there, my sweetie happened to pick up a little flier that talked about a video contest they were having where the winner would receive cupcakes for a year! That really meant a dozen free each month of the year (I personally can eat way more than one cupcake a month, especially those key lime ones...).

Anyway, when we looked at the date, the contest was set to close that night at 11:00. Princess, Prma Donna, and Crafty were at a dance competition and I knew they would be the ones most interested (well, actually, I knew they would be the only ones who could possibly save their cupcakes until they got home and could pull out a video camera since they weren't with us). Everybody else snarfed down their cakes in less than 30 seconds except for Baby Doll.

So we bought Princess, Prima Donna, and Crafty each a cupcake to use for their videos and then we headed home. The girls were excited about the contest, the only problem was that Princess and Prima Donna really wanted to attend the Stake Dance and that made it difficult to produce a video, but they managed and quickly emailed them to the judging committee. Sadly, the judges never got the videos. I don't know if they messed up the emailing or the files were too big, or what, but on Monday morning when I contacted One Sweet Slice, they had not been received.

Thankfully, they agreed to still take them and with Bossy's help, we finally got the files to them. But by the time they finally got up on YouTube with the others, we lost almost a whole day of sharing. I was hoping you could help us make up for lost time!

Bossy wanted me to tell you that voting counts for "shares" comments, or likes but only on YouTube. Please, oh please let everyone know that my girls have friends and are awesome! If you get there from the One Sweet Slice Facebook page, look for entries, 16, 17, and 18. 

Crafty's ninja video 

Princess's any place video

Prima Donna's sharing video

You guys are awesome!

 

Apr 25, 2013

Guess What?

Guess who got her new driver's license today??

That's right! Princess!

I can't believe that half of my children have driver's licenses now. At the risk of getting in big trouble, I'm going to tell you a little about my drivers. I guess I need to preface this by saying that I don't really like to drive, so I am pretty much always happy to have one of the kids behind the wheel. That means I have had plenty of opportunity to observe their driving habits.

Remember that I am sort of an expert at riding and critiquing somebody's driving. My dad was a driver's ed teacher and I spent many hours in the backseat because he wasn't able to take out a single student so one of us would have to go with him.

When Bossy turned 16 I was soooo excited to finally have another driver!! My sweetie worked long hours and I just needed someone to run kids to the dance studio or to the school. Bossy was an amazing driver right from the get-go. She watched her dad and emulated his movements. My only complaint was that sometimes she tended to stop a little too fast, which wasn't a big deal unless I was 8 1/2 months pregnant. (When I was 9 months along is was like BRING IT ON!)

The Gym Rat was always a bit of a speed demon and he liked fast sporty cars. That's why I currently have an old Camero with a super souped-up engine sitting on my driveway. Not that it can manage to pass inspection right now... (thank goodness...).

The Drama Queen was a distracted driver. She liked to look around and see what was going on elsewhere besides the road. In her defense, I drive the same way. I've just always been interested in my surroundings and what other people are doing. Now that she drives a Ford pickup truck she doesn't have to worry so much about being careful because people just naturally get out of her way.

Teach was a timid driver. She didn't go on the freeway (after her initial driving test) until she was almost 18. She doesn't like to drive at night because she doesn't feel like she can see well and she is more than happy to hand me the keys if we are going to Tupperware training across town. Of the many times I was in her car, I'm guessing I drove about 50% of the time.

The Dog Walker used to be a careful driver, but from what I hear lately he has gotten quite aggressive. I rarely go anywhere with him when I'm not driving. He is perfectly content to climb into the passenger seat and let me drive. Unlike Bossy who reaches for the keys even if the two of us are just running to Curves.

And then there is Princess. She is a careful and meticulous driver, just like I expected her to be. Her only fault is that she tends to accelerate through the turns at the wrong time, but that will come with a little more experience.

I took her out driving last week, trying to get all of her hours in before her appointment today and I asked her to go through the drive-up window at McDonalds. I think that actually terrified her more than the freeway! She doesn't like to talk to strangers.

Where have the days gone when the only thing I had to worry about were the strangers??

Apr 24, 2013

And the Verdict Is....

Remember a few days ago when I told you about the Allergy Clinic I signed up for? Well, today was the day! It was also a little crazy, hectic day with the clinic sandwiched between a softball game for Scout and Pack Meeting.

So after Scout's team got totally trounced, 13 - 1, we hustled to the van and raced to the University of Utah Healthcare Center at Daybreak. We were about 5 minutes late and I'm pretty sure we were the last two seated before Dr. Kevin Wilson started to speak.

He told us all about the different allergens and how his clinic could test for them and then recommend treatment. Scout was getting pretty restless especially when he started talking about the "skin prick" test. Thank goodness they had cookies for her to nibble on. I had originally planned to have her tested for allergies as well, but as the doctor described the process in detail, she started with, "I'm not doing that!" I'm pretty sure she repeated that phrase about 25 times.
When the good doctor was finished, the nurses and medical assistants began administering the allergy tests. It was kind of cool, actually. They had a tray, kind of like a tiny egg carton with 8 different substances in it for each forearm. After swabbing the areas with alcohol, the nurse used a plastic applicator with 8 little arms. She dipped the applicator in the substances and then pressed each one into my arm.

They promised there would be no blood, but they were wrong. Three of the little applicator arms actually broke the skin and a tiny drop of blood appeared in the drop of substance. It didn't hurt, but Scout was pretty upset by it and it wasn't even her arm!

When she told the nurses she wasn't interested in participating, they smiled and moved on. I'm sure they thought I was being ridiculous, but she has never shown signs of allergies before so I wasn't that worried about getting the tests done even if they were free.

After 20 minutes and a couple of games of Hangman with Scout, the nurses started back around to read the tests. Some people had flaming, itchy red spots the size of quarters on their arms, but not me. Mine stayed small, about the size of a large zit. The nurse kindly informed me that I had zero allergies! Which was news to me because if you remember right, the pollens in the air have been driving me a bit crazy lately, but maybe their mix just wasn't quite right for me. They certainly weren't interested in making me an appointment with the doctor like they were with the six-year-old on our table that had huge red circles up and down her arms.

All in all, I was glad to know that I don't really have to worry about allergies right now, but if I did, I would know just the number to call, 801-587-8368. And their cookies were pretty good too!

**I was compensated for attending this clinic and writing this post, but the opinions are all mine.**

Apr 23, 2013

More From Texas

I got to email with Teach today! Since Monday is her P-day (or preparation day) she gets to email for 30 minutes at the local library. I don't get her full attention, because she has to email her mission president and today one of her friends, but I do get a bit of her time.

Last week she was on around 10:30 in the morning, so I expected something similar this week. Silly me! I had to wait until after 12:00 to hear from her. I thought you might want to hear a little more about her mission.

The bike is great! (: I get bikers butt on the seat but it's really not to bad. I just have to pin my skirt and that works out. We have a "no drive day" once a week. and sometimes we'll bike on the weekends just so it's easier to contact people on the streets. it's kinda creepy when we just pull up next to them in a car!

The single biggest expense for her mission was a sturdy bike. It cost about $750 to purchase and have it shipped to her mission. I was hoping that she wouldn't need one, but her mission president said that every missionary in Texas needed to have a bike. I'm glad to know she is using it....a little....

We caught a cockroach this week and I about died!!! It was just chillin on the floor and Sister Kutie (name has been changed) trapped it in a cup. You can't squish them because then more come so you have to put them in a box and throw them away. we threw him away this morning. We named him Sherman. I kinda miss him. (:

We don't really see many cockroaches here in Utah, so that has been a totally new experience for her. She was worried that she would freak the first time she saw a big bug. Sounds like she handled it ok.

Remember I told you she was visiting the stockyards? 

So the stockyards were awesome. A member named Kayla (she's 18 and is going to UVU) was down for spring break. Her family owns 2 stores down in the stock yards and so she took us there to tour the place. We went into her store and I came to the conclusion that there was no way I wouldn't be able to get souvenirs and this might be the only chance so I loaded my arms and got something for everyone. Mom. it was insane. I'll send you the stuff... probably next week. I want you to know that she only charged me $23. I probably left with over $200 worth of stuff. It was such a generous miracle. I was so grateful and I prayed that Kayla and her family would be blessed for such generosity to the missionaries.

You know I just had to ask her about food!

Crafty and Sport writing to Teach.
We eat with members about 4 times a week. Other than that I make a bag of chicken and put it in either sandwiches, wraps, tortillas, etc. I have rice and black beans. We eat turkey sandwiches for lunch, and I have Greek yogurt. I buy frozen steamer veggies because they're easy and delicious. sometimes I eat tuna on crackers. I don't buy too many desserts. (does trail mix count?) but then I ALWAYS eat the desserts that the members give us. They're usually the best part. (:
 
We had brisket the first night at the Mission home.... and then Katie's grandparents cooked us steak last Sunday... (they feed us lunch every Sunday) it was good... and the bishop made us ribs. they were yummy. the bbq is pretty legit around here. (:

We spent part of our Family Night writing letters for Teach, but I still miss her beautiful smile. So I don't know about you, but I'm ready for some of that legit BBQ. Anybody got any frequent flyer points they want to donate so I can spend next week in Texas?

Just kidding, as much as I would love to see her, she doesn't need the distraction and I have too many baseball games to go to next week anyway.

Apr 22, 2013

Kicked Around

I've been feeling a little kicked around this week. I'm not sure why because lots of good things are happening here. Crafty got the coveted role of Kate in Taming of the Shrew for her 6th grade Shakespeare production. The Dog Walker's full tuition scholarship was renewed for Summer Semester (although my sweetie and I were way more excited about that than he was...I think he was looking forward to a break.)

Princess finished her driving hours and is looking forward to getting her license this week. Sport hit an awesome double in his baseball game and then stole his way home! Crafty, Sport, and Scout all finished their Soaring Eagle Awards. Sport actually got a spot in the Lego Crew class (he couldn't get in last month, it was already full on the first day of registration.) I won a boatload of Tupperware in a random drawing at training and Princess got every single class she wanted for next year in Arena Scheduling.

I have a Tupperware party at Curves tomorrow which is awesome except that I have to get up at the crack of dawn to set up. Princess and Prima Donna both danced several dances at the Stake Dance last night. And Curly finally has his first baseball game (in the big leagues!) tomorrow. Not many weeks have so many good things happening!

So what's wrong with me??

(Now comes the whiny part, so you might want to stop reading...)

Still with me? Good! So today at church I was chatting with a friend of mine who happens to teach at the same college the Dog Walker attends. She told me that we have the absolute WORST teacher for his Lit class! It's no wonder he can't get a decent grade on a test. He spent many hours on his last essay test and he got 3/ 25. Seriously! For one of the questions he got a zero out of seven possible.How can that happen?! He wrote about 500 coherent words that might not have been a perfect A answer, but come on, it was worth more than nothing!

Wait a second while I catch my breath, that was a pretty good rant...

And then tonight, just when I was feeling my most kicked around with the Sunday night blues, Crafty decided to do gymnastics across my kitchen floor. She did a cartwheel and totally kicked the land-line phone right off the wall! And no, it doesn't work any more.

I stayed in the office while she confessed her sin to her daddy with many tears and apologies. He handled it like a pro. He asked her if she learned her lesson and she sniffed and nodded her head. Then he cautioned her against gymnastics in the kitchen while he went to work on replacing the destroyed phone.

I'm not mean enough to kick her around, but I would have at least assigned her a job or given her a good rant...


Apr 21, 2013

Spring Cleaning

I finally had a day off from all the chasing around. It felt nice to sleep in a bit. Princess, Prima Donna, and Crafty all had a dance competition in Clearfield, but my sweetie dropped them at the carpool spot. That left my day open except for a birthday party Scout was planning to attend in the middle of the day.

It was a perfect day for a little spring cleaning.

The kids didn't think so. But eventually I prevailed and Sport and Curly brought down the clothes out of all of their drawers so we could sort them. They sure have grown this winter! By the time we were finished we had loaded two large garbage bags and refolded all of their things for them to put back in their drawers.

Mine's gone already?!
On my way to pick up Scout from the birthday party, I dropped the garbage bags at Deseret Industries. They are a charity sponsored by the LDS church that sends clothing and other supplies all over the world. The boys thought it was interesting to think about the various countries their discarded t-shirts and jeans might help clothe.

When we returned, we piled the kids in the van and headed for the library. After cashing in our free book coupons from the Beehive reading contest, we decided to walk over to One Sweet Slice.

On the way, the kids ran through the fountain, but it didn't matter because there was only a little water in it. In Utah we are in that awkward place between winter and spring, not cold enough for the ice skating rink, but definitely not warm enough to turn on the fountain.




I don't know if your kids watch TV, but mine see very little and when they do get the opportunity, one of their favorite shows is Cupcake Wars.

They loved watching the episode with our very own neighborhood cupcakery and were even more excited to see them win!

We had never taken the kids to One Sweet Slice before, but since we had three free coupons...


Want my advice? Try the key lime cupcake, I'm sure that's the reason they won.




Apr 20, 2013

The Car Wash

It's raining here in Utah tonight. Want to know why? It's because I had my car washed yesterday!

Since the Dog Walker had classes and it was Curly's day off from preschool and dance, I had to take my entourage with me to run errands. I've gotten a little spoiled, I usually have older kids home to watch the younger ones so I can just take off if I need to run to Curves or to the post office. But yesterday was a different story.

After we finally had everyone dressed, with shoes and socks and jackets in place, Curly, Baby Doll and I headed for the van. "Ooooo!" Curly admired. "A bird pooped on your window, Mom." Sure enough, there was bird poop streaked all down the driver's side. I tried to ignore it as I quickly buckled them into their car seats, but Curly was determined. "There's bird poop on Baby Doll's window too."

She and I both glanced up at the same time and her little face settled into a permanent frown as she spied the mess on her window as well. I sighed, pulled the door closed and clicked my seat belt. "Well," I responded, "there is only one thing to do." I paused for a little dramatic effect...

"CAR WASH!!"

That brought the smiles back. My kids love the car wash! Usually in the warmer months we wash the cars out on the lawn, but every once in a while we enjoy the adventure of  the car wash tunnel. Curly could hardly sit still as we drove to the post office for our first stop. "When are we going to the car wash?" he just kept pestering me.

"Soon!" I promised and rebuckled their seat belts."We have to get gas first." They patiently waited while I pumped the gas. After all, that was another kind of adventure. Then it was off to the car wash.
Of course I had a free coupon in my purse...

As we approached the tunnel, the attendant started spraying off the van and using a big brush on the windows. Curly, who is always watching to make sure things are done right, hollered, "He got the bird poop!" And then the big brushes started to turn.

I pulled out my cell phone and snapped a few pictures for you. Sorry some are a little dark. It's not that light in the tunnel. As we approached the end, Curly shouted, "Here comes the big wind!" So glad we got a play-by-play of the most excitement we'd had in a couple of weeks.

When we were finished, we pulled into a parking stall and let the attendants dry everything the rest of the way with towels. They were very thorough! So much so that I reached into my purse and pulled out a second dollar to tip along with the first one I had in my hand for just that purpose.

As they shut all the doors, Curly announced, "Time to go!"

I smiled all the way to the school to pick up the other kids. It's amazing how such a little thing can make life so fun. I think that tonight when I get down on my knees I'll thank my Heavenly Father for that little bit of bird poop and a free coupon for the car wash.



Apr 19, 2013

Another Allergy?

My mom holding baby Gym Rat
I woke up this morning with what felt like a fuzzy tennis ball in my throat. I couldn't swallow and my mouth was dry, but I was too tired to do much about it as I stumbled out the door just before 7:00 AM to run the carpool. My sweetie had an early meeting and I was on my own.

As we pulled up to the school, I complained a bit to Princess about my throat and she quickly assured me I wasn't the only one suffering. When I got back to the house, I pulled open the medicine cupboard and popped a Loratadine. I shook my groggy brain, willing the tiny pill to work faster. When did this all happen?

I remember my mom always complaining about hayfever when we were kids. Since my dad owned a small farm, I always assumed she really got sick when she was around the hay. It wasn't until I was older that I realized that she had seasonal allergies  that sometimes got way out of hand.

My sweetie has always trouble with allergies, but not me. Not until the last few years, that is. How is it that a healthy adult can suddenly start having issues with the outdoors? Well, I plan to find out!

Today in my email, I received an invitation to an Allergy Night hosted by the University of Utah. They are having a free event on April 23, 2013 from 6:30 - 7:30 at their Daybreak Facility in South Jordan. They are even offering a free allergy test (with a skin prick) to figure out what type of allergies I might have developed in my old age.

So if you are anywhere near South Jordan, and the pollen is driving you crazy like it is me, check out this website

http://healthcare.utah.edu/calendar/index.php?trumbaEmbed=view%3devent%26eventid%3d104696528

 to get yourself registered too. I hope to see you there!

**I was paid a small fee for this promotion.**

Apr 18, 2013

A Little Randomness

I'm feeling a bit random tonight and a lot burned out! The Dog Walker started a new job at Wal Mart about a month ago, stocking shelves three nights a week. He works the graveyard shift on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. You would think that might mean I could get more sleep since he is gone those nights and I don't have anyone up to help with homework (except Prima Donna)...

But no, it doesn't work that way. Instead when the first of the week rolls around, he is used to staying up all night so that is when he wants to do his homework. This 3:00 AM thing just doesn't work for me when I have to get up early and get kids off to school.

In fact, it's carpool week for me (you know how much I hate the carpool!) so that means I have to be coherent and ready to drive at 7:00 AM.

I sent the Dog Walker off to bed about 20 minutes ago so I could give you a quick post. I thought it might be fun to pull up a few old totally unrelated pics and tell you what I remember. Teach used to do that for me once in a while, so I guess I can do it by myself...maybe...


This first one is a cute pic of Bossy and Gamer and baby Taco. Aren't they cute!?


Oh the Dog Walker will be so mad at me for choosing this picture! When he was little he just loved Barney. One day at the mall he had a chance to hug his hero in person. These funny pictures were taken by him in 2007 right out of his scrapbook. Without Teach's step-by-step instructions, this is probably how I would be scanning pictures too!

Another one from the same year. This is his cute Halloween costume I made. Except he forgot his cowboy hat!



 Sweet little Princess and baby Scout about Christmastime, 2005.
The Drama Queen and Teach just being so silly! I always warned Teach that she shouldn't pull a silly face in almost every picture she ever had taken. Because someday somebody might just put them on the blog...

Good thing she can't read blogs on her mission.

And with that, I bid you good night!

Apr 17, 2013

Breakfast with the Mayor

Do you remember way last summer when we all headed off to our CountryFest celebration? Princess and Prima Donna were in the parade with the marching band and Sport led his group of helmet wearers on their bikes. The Dog Walker had his dancing filmed and entered into the contest by Utah Dave, and the kids all participated in the Pinewood Derby that was set up at the park.

They love racing their cars any time they get the opportunity and this time was no different. After they raced each other, they had the opportunity to race with the mayor! He had an amazing car made to look like a city golf cart (I wonder if he made it himself?) and it was much faster than I expected. He beat all of our kids, but promised them a consolation prize of having breakfast with the mayor. That was in June.

When the email finally came mid-March, we had pretty much given up thinking it would ever happen. So last Saturday was the big day. We dressed the kids up cute and headed for the University of Utah medical center at Daybreak. I know, weird place for a breakfast, huh?

We met in a conference room and helped ourselves to muffins, eggs, bacon and sausage, fried potatoes, and juice. The muffins especially were delicious. We sat with our tables in the shape of a U and the mayor sat with us. He answered informal questions and asked the kids about their activities, particular ball and things offered by the city.

After we were finished eating, he took a few minutes to talk to the kids in a more formal way. He and his assistants asked us how they could improve the Pinewood Derby and increase participation. The kids were full of suggestions! I was proud of their ability to speak up in their first-ever political forum.

After the talking was over, they spent some time making a little video to go on the city website. I was planning to put this whole post up when the site was live, but honestly, if it takes as long as the breakfast invitation did...






Apr 16, 2013

Kiylee's Christmas - Chapter 14

So we are finally here! The last chapter of my never-before-published children's novel...what do you think? I guess I won't ever make any money off it, but at least a few of you have read some of it. It's hard to spend so much time on something that nobody will ever read.
Cover for my Book created by Dog Walker

I'm sure by now you figured out that this is a mostly true story although my memories and Bossy's memories tend to differ some. And my sweetie's memories are something altogether different. But I think I captured the essence of the real-life drama that devastated our lives back in 1997. 

 Chapter Fourteen – Kiylee’s Christmas

    “Line up, line up!”  We crowded near the top of the stairs in our new pajamas.  Mom was first, carrying a fragile wrapped gift in her arms. Nathan was after her, then Kiyna, Kinsey, Neal, and finally me. Dad was already downstairs. He always went down first to turn on the Christmas tree lights.
    It was still dark outside and the living room was lit only by the lights from the tree. “Careful,” Mom cautioned as we made our way excitedly down the stairs. 
    I bumped into Neal somewhere near the bottom step and I grabbed his shoulders to keep him from falling. “Kira,” he complained. 
    “Oh, you’re fine,” I mumbled. “Hurry up.”
Mom sat down on the couch and cradled the precious gift on her lap. Usually, we all grab our stockings and then start ripping, but not this time. I picked up my gift for Kiy and carried it to Mom. I could see the tears shining in her eyes as she carefully unwrapped the blanket from Kiy’s arms and sat her up. She still looked so pale and small! I handed her the package.
    Kiy was too weak to tear the paper herself, so Mom helped her. Within a few seconds, the doll’s blue eyes stared up at Kiy from the torn paper. Kiy looked up at me and smiled. “Ra-ra,” she whispered and reached for me.
    I hugged her gently and carefully while the tears slid down my cheeks. I looked at Mom and she was crying too. “You know, Mom,” I said, “the best gifts aren’t wrapped in Christmas paper.”
Kiy and Nate at the zoo about a year later.
    I glanced across the room at Dad. He was trying to get Nathan to open one of his presents. I laughed, “Guess what, Dad?” 
    “What?” Dad asked.
    I gently stroked Kiy’s wispy curls. “I believe in miracles.”
    He smiled. “And in Santa Claus?” he questioned.
    I looked around at the mound of unopened gifts. “And in Santa Claus!”






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