Thursday, January 31, 2008

In case you wanted to know

which X-Man I would be,

You Are Iceman

You tried to live a normal life, but it just wasn't possible
A bit of a slacker, you rather tell jokes than cultivate your powers

Powers: turning self and others into ice, making ice weapons, becoming nearly invisible

which is too bad cause I hate Iceman. Ruff. Who believes those stupid quizzes anyway?

Anyway, sometimes my husband thinks he's funny. Like the other day, he came home and said, "I did our taxes today. This is how much we're getting back. Can I buy a truck?"

Oh, you are sooo SOOOO not funny. But sorta.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Today, church went pretty well...oh, that is AFTER Brett took Ethne (and so the other kids too) out to the foyer for the entire Sacrament Mtg, because when I went up to play the organ (yeah-before the mtg even started) Ethne threw such a fit that he just kept her out.

Anyway, we came home and had some very delicioso pork chops that Brett made for us, and then Brett went home teaching. I laid on the couch to digest, and pretty soon fell asleep. So, an hour or so later I wake up to Ethne standing beside me, and something feeling a little sandy is dropping from her everywhere. It is brown sugar that she and Ethne got into from my little lazy Susan where it is kept, and opened, pigged out on and spread EVERYWHERE!!!!! GRRRRRRR!!! Ethne had also spilled a great amount of milk from her sippy cup on herself and so she was dripping with sugar. It was tracked throughout the whole house. I was so mad. I couldn't believe Hazel would do that (though of course she said Ethne opened it), and I couldn't believe Jethro didn't wake me up and tell me!! (Yeah, yeah, don't pin it on me--just cause I was sleeping...I take no responsibility!)

Anyway, Brett came home after I had dumped Ethne and Hazel in the tub and was starting to clean up (not to mention there was cards and game pieces of a ton of board games all over the place) and he took care of the kids in the tub and made them stay on the couch while I cleaned up. And, he also contributed a bit of humor to the situation. First he said that we like raising ants at our house, adn then he said, "What is this, a house for ants?!" (Zoolander, in case you didn't get it.)

So anyway, I just felt so astonished that my good kids would do such a thing. It's my sister Andrea who's supposed to have the demon children (okay, demon child), not me!

Oh, and also I was going to mention that Brett and I went on a date on Saturday, and it was way fun! We went and played raquetball again (I'm already getting soooo much better...ha!), and then because our kids were at the babysitter's who lived on the opposite side of town, we just ran our errands before we picked them up. So, first we went to the shop at Brett's school, and he tried to fit a plug in this transmission that he's going to be putting in our car, but it didn't work because the tap wasn't exactly right for the plug that he had (the tap being a tool that creates new threads to screw something into--I learned that that night).
Then, we ran over to the church so I could go through the hymns once (yeah--I procrastinated really bad this week!), and Brett was monkeying around with the stops, and I told him to lead for me, and he was being all funny. Anyway, it just reminded me of how much I love to be with my honey! He was gone most evenings last week working shifts for a contractor friend of ours, so I was missing him. So, yeah. Goodnight.

Friday, January 25, 2008

My Fire Fairy

I just have to write about my adorable baby girl tonight because...she's adorable! And soooo funny!!! The last few days it's as if she suddenly grew this hilarious little personality. Everything she does is funny, and she KNOWS it. She is such a hoot.

She'll follow Jethro and Hazel around as they chase each other around, and she laughs and laughs. Or she'll just come ambling into the room, swinging her arms, and giving this funny little look.
Tonight we went to Chic-Fil-A where I babysat some kids and we had dinner (of course), and she was eating her fries, but she had to carefully dip each time into the ketchup. Haa ha. Then, when we were done and I took her into the play place, she was just screaming in excitement and laughing, and following the big kids around. It's like, before she would think, 'Hmm--this is something new and interesting', but now she KNOWS that this is FUN man!
Later on, she was feeding little pieces of her bread to me, and then, when all of the bread in her hand was gone, she reached for some in her mouth, already chewed, to share, and so of course I squawked EWWW! and put her hand back to her own mouth, and she laughed and laughed like there was no tomorrow, and kept doing it over and over, and laughing and laughing.
What a joy!
P.S. For a very funny story about Hazel go here. (It's at the end.) It's totally like Hazel--she likes to just make herself right at home. At the library she'll climb up on anyone's lap who's sitting in the chairs (complete strangers) and expect them to read her a story! Anyway. There's also some pictures of Ethne modeling a very adorable hat that my talented friend knit.
p.s. I can't wait for summer so I can get some good pictures again! even when it's bright out, it's so hard to get a picture that's not blurry. GRRRRRR. This irks me to no end. Have I mentioned that someday, when Brett and I move away from this play house and get a real house, it will have windows EVERYWHERE?! And if there isn't, I will chop through the walls with an ax like on the movie Fried Green Tomatoes.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Today is my mom's birthday.

Okay, today is my mom's birthday, and this post is about her. It can be a little awkward reading a post where the person praises their mom, because everyone thinks their own mother is the greatest, so it's weird hearing someone else proclaim that. But you know, I don't care because my mom really IS the greatest mom, so I'm going to shout it out. Okay, just kidding, I know I won't change your mind, but there truly are some really REALLY cool things about my mom that I'm sure most everyone would find interesting, and this post is for my own benefit--so I'll just write whatever thought comes to my head. Without further ado.

My mom's name is Lorie Fay.

She is the youngest of nine kids and she grew up on the most GORGEOUS spot of land on the earth--in Southern Alberta, about fifteen kilometers away from Waterton National Park (Canadian side of Glacier National Park) on a ranch.

Now, some true (though seemingly unbelievable) facts about her childhood: She and her two parents and eight brothers and sisters lived in a house with only two tiny bedrooms, a tiny front room, and a small kitchen. It has since been enlarged, but even as it stands now it probably has less than 1000 sq. feet. (And I feel very cramped living with 3 kids in our 900-something sq. ft. house!). I know that she had told us before how the arrangements were, but I had forgotten, so I asked her recently. She said that in the one bedroom there were two full sized beds, one that three brothers slept in, and one that three sisters slept in. Another sister slept in a pull-out cot that they pulled out into the kitchen every night. Her and her brother Delroy slept in some kind of small bunk bed in their mom and dad's small room. She said, "You know, in those days, we all just went to bed. At the same time." Oh, and in the summers, her brothers slept in a tent in the front yard. She remembers once, after her oldest sister, Jeannnette had gone to Ricks for nursing school, a guy from the States came 'calling' on her and slept out in the tent with the brothers. My mom said, "He must have thought we were so back-woodsy!" Indeed!

Also, my mom never had an indoor toilet until after she got married. This is in freezing Canada, for Pete's sake! Whenever I count my blessings, I always am thankful for an indoor toilet. She even remembers using paper and magazine pages for wiping. My mom is tough. Much tougher than a regular person.

My mom says that sometimes she feels more akin to people that are a generation older than her, because her growing up was the same as theirs.

My mom and dad grew up in towns close to each other, and my dad and my Uncle Delroy played on the highschool football team. Once upon a time at a Stake dance, my mom saw my dad and since she hadn't heard the outcome of the last game, she asked him who won. My dad saw my mom, thought "Wow" (okay, for the record, I don't really know if that's exactly what he thought, but I'm sure it was something akin to that), and took his date home so that he could come back and pick up my mom and take her home.

Since my mom was still at the junior high, and my dad was at the high school, he would pick her up at lunch time and they would drive around. My mom said none of the high school girls liked her at all---in fact, were pretty snooty because, of course, they were jealous that this little impostor was dating the senior class president, football star, basketball star, wrestling star, rodeo star (did I miss anything? ;) ). And mom was mad when this one guy--a good dancer--wouldn't dance with her because he was afraid Dad would beat him up.

One of the coolest things ever to me, is that after they got married, my mom rode the rodeo circuit (I thought that my mom and dad did together, but she corrected me that Dad only did it in high school). She barrel-raced on my Uncle Montey's horse named Badger while he was at Ricks. I asked her if she ever won any money, and she said remembers winning in Taber and Writing-on-Stone. She said that they stuck out in her mind, because the money she won was more than the entry fee and gas money. :) Other times, my dad and mom did other stuff, like the Rescue Race, where the girl is standing at one side of the arena, and the guy on the horse comes racing towards her, and as he turns around her, he swings her up on the saddle behind him. I TOTALLY wish I could watch them do that. Mom said she thinks Brett and I would be good at that because he has good upper body strength and I'm light. Wish I could try--wouldn't that be awesome! (And as a random sidenote, Brett can do that super-awesome swinging-jump into the saddle, you know--sans stirrups, and it looks soooooo awesome! One of the reasons I had to marry him.) (Another sidenote, why did my parents have to move to the States before I could become a champion barrel-racer--I know that was my true life's calling!)
Anyway, my mom is good at a gazillion things. Let me start listing.

She's an incredibly skilled and intelligent softball player (she said this came from playing with her brothers and sisters everyday after chores were done. They would play 500, and she'd always beg her older brothers and sisters to let the ball drop so she could catch it on the roll, but she said only her nice brother Perry would ever let her. She also described a game called Auntie-I-Over (sp?) that involved throwing a ball over a roof, which she said taught you to never drop your fly balls).

She has an AMAZING voice that I LOVE soo much, and plays the piano really well, and leads ward choirs awesomely (I LOVE being her pianist, she is so enthusiastic and she likes going fast, like me).

She is a fantastic cook and everything she makes tastes great. She has always baked bread for our family, and she makes these INCREDIBLE chocolates and other candy at Christmas time.

She is SO CLEAN. I mean, her house is ALWAYS spic and span--even when she had nine kids at home ranging in ages from 16-1. My dad says sometimes when he's taking her somewhere, he wishes he could blindfold her until they're out of the house, because she'll see a speck of something on the stovetop, and have to scrub it off, then that turns into washing the wall behind the stove, then that turns into the wall adjacent to the stove, and pretty soon she's washing the ceiling three rooms down, and when you ask her what she's doing she says, "Just wiping this spot off the stove." This is perhaps why I can never be at peace with my house. My sister Amy and I have sadly wondered how we came from her. At least I know HOW to clean really well. Anyway, further discussion on this topic will deteriorate into a very long ramble, so I will stop now.

She knows how to drive a tractor, pull a horse trailer, etc.

She is competent in many areas of home repair/building.

She is very smart in general, and also smart at SO many things! For example, she can intelligently talk with my dad about cars, horses, dairying, farming, education, and other things.

She can cut hair and she is very fashionable (though I learned from her to dress in work clothes if you want to get work done that day). I don't know how she got this--I think it is just innate, because I'm sure she has never in her life wasted time reading a fashion magazine. One time some college girls that lived in Minot were talking to her and they said that she had perfect eyebrows. It's true. How does she know how to pluck her eyebrows to perfection? She also does a wonderful job of applying makeup. And, she is gorgeous.
My sister Kami told me that she thinks mom has a never-fail sense of style. For example, Kami will always ask her opinion on a flower arrangement she does or something, because Mom will always pick out whether something is out of balance, it needs something, etc.

One year at girls camp, she was the only one who could light the fires (and Kami helped her).

My mom is smart at all things housekeeping. Gardening, food storage, cleaning, preserving, laundering, etc. Just the other day Brett and I were chopping up a ham that we got on sale, and because our last ham had got freezer burned before we got through it, he said, "Let's call your mom to see what she advises." And lo and behold, she knew just what to do. I always wonder what in the world someone does when she doesn't have a mother who knows everything. I call her to ask something about a recipe, and she asks "Now, does your recipe card say one egg or two?" And I reply one, and she says, "Well, change it to two, that works better." And this is all without going and picking up her recipe card--it's all in her head. It's really amazing.

She sews well. She doesn't often do it too much 'for fun', but she has made beautiful dresses for her girls before, made many quilts for her kids and grandkids, made all the girls dolls, some Halloween costumes, etc. And she's really good at mending holes in jeans. :)

She has really beautiful handwriting. Whenever I or several of my siblings name one of our kids, we always ask her to write it out for us so we can see how lovely it looks. (That gene missed me too, unfortunately.)

She is a friend to EVERYONE! Her neighbors become fast friends. People she meets at church, people she meets at her kids' schools, people on the street, tell her their life stories (she tells them hers too, we always have to pull her out of places). She always offers to help old ladies and old men in grocery stores. Etc. etc.

She's just really good at all the mom stuff. Like when she makes a sandwich, the slices are cut the perfect width, and there's the precisely perfect amount of peanut butter and honey. When she packs a tin-foil dinner, it's not only neat and tidily wrapped, but utterly leak-proof. She can pack things in a box tighter and better than anyone on earth.

She is really really strong. Kami and I decided that she is super-human. She had ten babies and is still slender and trim. She usually beats all the girls at arm-wrestling competitions (though it can be a close call with Megan), and if there was an endurance race I'm sure she'd win that as well. After Brett and I got married we drove to NoDak for the reception there, and his parents flew up as well. We were all chillin outside and for some reason Wyatt started a competition to see who could climb up the rope swing the fastest. My mom totally climbed it so fast. It's funny because it made a big impression on my mother-in-law. She has mentioned it a couple times, saying how impressive it was. And it is. I tried it-and it was hard!

Okay, I'm getting tired, and starting to feel wussy. On to different things. So, my mom's two soapboxes in life: Hard work and Obedience. If you do those two things, you've got it made. She's a very good example of both. See, look at her milking the cow at two years old. Hard worker. As for me, I may have sprung from a different mold, but I cleverly married someone just like her in that department, so I've got it made, right?

Kami and I were talking the other day and decided she's the non-mopiest person we know. She had some quite tough years there when they were young marrieds, had lots of little kids, and dad was deciding whether to be a farmer or a teacher or a dairyman or go back to school, but I just can't imagine her ever just lying on the couch, crying and saying, Wo is me, I have such a hard life. I just know that she just got up and did the work that needed done (not that I believe she was continuously chipper, but still). She's just not one to moan about stuff. When I asked Brett what he thought one of my mom's greatest qualities was, he said her positive attitude.

She always puts her greatest effort into everything she does. Everything. She doesn't even know how to do something passably. One example, in trying to think of something that I'm better at than her, I thought of writing in school. As in, if you don't exactly know the answer, but you can fudge your way through a great-appearing essay anyway--well, I'm really good at that, but my mom--she has to KNOW it. Inside and out. She prefers numbers because, you do the calculations, the numbers come out right. Exact. She always does her jobs with high energy and high speed too. Only not too speedy, because it has to be good. But yeah, high energy. Really though, I think the reason she is so slim is because she is constantly on the go...she really can't watch movies, it strains her far too much to sit still for that long. ;)

She's very practical.
With all this talk about practicality and hard work, you should know that she is SOOO MUCH FUN! In high school, often when Kami's and my group of friends would try to decide whose house to go to, one guy would always say, "Let's go to the Rasmussen's so I can beat their mom at ping-pong!" (My mom is a very excellent ping-pong player.) She likes having get togethers and playing and laughing. She has this wonderful laugh that you can easily pick out in a crowd. Here's a picture of her beating up/tickling Wyatt. She once punched one of my guy friends in high school in the nose on accident when she was pretending to fight him. He turned the wrong way, and she nailed him. It was pretty darn hilarious.
She has a nose like a blood-hound. Once, Wyatt and I built some little fires outside and when we were finished playing around, we ran around flapping our arms and shaking our shirts for a LONG time to get the smell off of us. Well, it so happened that later that day she was tickling us, and then suddenly she was stopped, and sniffed my hair, and sniffed again, and said, "You've been playing with fire!" I couldn't believe it. That reminds me of another time, when she was gone somewhere one evening, I got into the icecream and had some in a cup that I was walking around with, and a teeny tiny itsy bitty little drop fell onto the carpet. Since it was a teeny tiny itsy bitty little drop, I just rubbed it in with my sock--the carpet being very brown-specklish and very good at hiding things. When mom got home she was talking for a minute and then IMMEDIATELY zoomed in to the spot on the carpet and said, "What's this? Who was in the icecream?!" Actually, I don't remember if she knew it was icecream, but either way, I was in trouble. How does she do it?!

So, I suppose I should let you know that she's not absolutely perfect. She does have a very few human frailties. One is a colorful vocabulary. Once upon a time, she was taking me and Kami and probably Wyatt to something, and was in a hurry, and backed out of the driveway into somebody's car that was parked there. She exclaimed, "Hells bells!" Kami and I tried to stifle our laughter at her highly amusing choice of words. One other time I remember her swearing (though it wasn't hells bells that time) was when we were on a long trip home from California, and Kami and I were fighting in our seat, and we were pushing and shoving and being completely obnoxious, and Kami pushed against me really hard (in revenge of something I had done to her) but her feet, which she was using as her leverage, were against the big back window of the van, and suddenly the window just popped out. When I realized what had happened, I thought, "Oh no, Kami's going to die." It was a frightful thing. When Mom realized what had happened, she was very mad (understandably so). (However, we backed up, and the window had fallen on sand and AMAZINGLY had not broken. But it was a cold ride back home to Utah in Dec. with only a quilt stretched across the window.)

Once upon a time when I was a young'un I got in trouble at Youth Conference, and the YW leader was very angry with me and said a lot of mean things (like that I thought I was better than everyone else...blah blah), and so I was stubborn and didn't apologize (for a crime that was VERY minimal, I assure you) and so I got sent home. Well, my dad came and picked me up, and I had to explain to them, and they said that it doesn't matter the situation, you should just obey the leader, but they didn't get too mad, and sent me to bed. Then (don't read this next part mom and dad!) I got out of bed and listened at their door, and mom was REALLY mad at the YW leader! She was saying how she should have handled it so differently and that she should not have said the things she did, etc. And I felt SOOO good!! My mom was defending me and it was sooo very very heartwarming! I think that that may not have been exactly the true significance of what she was saying, but that's how it felt. So good.

Another time, at YW camp, I got in trouble for going out past curfew and going swimming (sheesh--what a wayward kid!). My mom was there as cook that year. The leaders came and had a talk with me the following mid-morning. They said that they wouldn't tell my mom about it as long as I didn't get into any more trouble. I said, "My mom already knows about it." They said, "She does?! Who told her?" and I said, "I did." Ha ha--so much for their big threat.

It's so easy to tell that my mom just loves her kids. From little things, like how whenever she sees a baby on a movie or t.v. she says, 'Why didn't they use one of MY babies? My babies were sooo much cuter than that one." It's so funny, and she's completely sincere. And she always wants to make sure we have all the things we need. Like last Christmas, she called me and Kami and found out which size pans we had and bought us some Lifetime pans (which have an 'L' on them, which I always thought stood for 'Lorie' growing up). She always helps us with whatever we ask her to, she talks to us, and hugs us and takes care of us and thinks of us all the time. It is sad that I can't live a little closer, because she is a fantastic grandma too, and my kids LOVE playing with her!!
In closing, I'd just like to say that I'm incredibly blessed and grateful that I got to have her as my mother.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

One year!

One year ago today I started this ol' blog. And this is my 201st post (I think). So I should probably have something really amazing to say, but I don't. Just a rundown of my last few days.

Friday night Brett and I went on a date and played raquetball. It was SOO much fun, but I am a total pansy. My arm was so tired in no time. I never actually beat Brett, but one game I gave him a fairly good run. (Of course, he was playing left-handed, but that's a trifling detail.)

Saturday I took the kids to Lowe's and they got to hammer together some wood and made a truck. They really enjoyed it (especially Jethro) and they were so cute in their aprons and goggles with their little hammers.

On Monday we set up the little kids' tent in the front room, built a fire in the fireplace, and had tin foil dinners for dinner (cooked in the oven because the fire wasn't making enough coals fast enough). The kids started out the night sleeping in the tent, but couldn't keep from playing so had to get transferred to their own beds. The pictures are of Ethne being a monster and scaring the kids inside the tent. She had a ball doing this.

Yesterday I went over to a friend's house and let the kids play, and then came home to pick up Jethro from school. When we had picked him up and were home, getting out of the car, this lady came up to me and begged for a ride to the Food Stamp Office because if she didn't get there with this thing they needed before 4:00 they were going to tear up her application (which I don't buy, but if it were me, I wouldn't have wanted to go back on the bus the next day or whatever---it's freezing cold.), so I took her there. We had an interesting conversation about how you can be any age and go to Purdue (she didn't know that) and how she thought if you wanted to go to school and better yourself you shouldn't have to pay anything, the government should pay it for you. Hmm, wouldn't that be nice.

Anyway, I got home and started making dinner because the missionaries were coming over, and I was a little behind after taking the lady (and of course, Ethne had slept on the way there and back, so her nap was way too short, so she was crying and screaming if I wasn't holding her). I thought about calling Brett to see if he could come home early to help, but then I decided not to. The missionaries called and said they'd be a little late, so I managed to get all the food ready in time and most stuff cleaned up (Jethro vacuumed the living room--YAY for useful children!!), and then the missionaries showed up, but Brett wasn't home yet, so they had to wait in the car. I called him and he was still at work!! He NEVER stays that late, he always gets hungry and comes home, but of course, picked today to stay late. Anyway, we eventually did eat and it was good.

This morning I took the kids to Chic-Fil-A for breakfast because they're giving a free breakfast entree to everyone every Wednesday morning until the middle of June. This was awesome of course, and the kids played for a long time on the play place.

The other exciting thing for today was that Hazel started a little ballet class!!!!! She was pretty excited and I was very excited for her, and it was really fun. When I told her in the morning what exciting thing she got to do, Jethro said, "I wish I could be in a dance class. But not a gentleman dance class, a COOL dance class." I assured him that he could TEACH classes on how to dance cool (the kid is amazing).

Anyway, that's how my life has been going.

Friday, January 11, 2008


A conversation with Jethro about names:
I was slicing olives, so the kids kept coming in to snitch some, and I told them that I have a grandma who's name is Olive. Jethro said, "Why did she choose that name?" And I said, "She didn't choose it. Her parents named her that when she was a baby. Just like I named you Jethro when you were a baby."
"Are you glad I named you Jethro?"
"Well, yeah, it's okay.....but I wish you would have picked Speedy. Or Flash."

A conversation with the missionaries about my husband:
--Hi, is your husband home?
--No, he's at work.
--Oh, we saw two vehicles?
--He took his motorcycle today.
--He has a MOTORCYCLE?!!!
--When did he get it?
--In the fall, but it's been in the garage, taken apart for the last little while, so he could play with it that way. Now he put it back together, so he rode it today.
--He takes things apart and puts them back together?
--Yes, it's the joy in his life, actually.
--He's really handy, isn't he?
--Is there anything he can't do?
Pause. --I'm sure there is, but I can't think of anything at the moment.

A conversation with my brother-in-law Blake about his new girlfriend.
--So we've seen each other pretty much every night for the last nine nights.
--Wow, nine nights and you still like her? That's a good sign.
--But I don't get to see her tonight, because her BFF has to have some time with her.
Laughing my head off --Did you just say BFF? HAHA!
--And I don't get to see her tomorrow night either because her sister's husband is going somewhere, so she's going to visit her sister.
--Too bad.
--But it's okay, because I'm actually kind of sick.
--That is too bad.
--Yeah, I'm pretty positive she gave it to me. I guess I should've tried harder to keep her from giving it to me.
(suspiciously)--Tried HARDER?
--Yeah, she's really fun to kiss.
--That's what I thought.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

philisophical question for the day

So, obviously there are different ways of doing things, but my question is, can they be equal, or is one way always actually better than the other ways? Take for a simple example, going to school. People do it in many different ways. Even the people that are devoted to graduating, doing well, etc. One person may study to absorb, understand, and liken as much of the information as he can, in other words, do his best. Another person may study to get the grade, remember for the test, or do what needs to be done to get by. A person can do very well by this method--I know because I did it. I have lots of "school" skills--I could always study the night before and do really really well on a test. And I always knew just how much effort I had to put into something to get an A. (This reminds me of how we'd show my dad a report card and he'd look at the 97% or whatever, and he'd ask what percent we needed for the A, and we'd say 94%, and he'd say, Why did you bother with the other 3%? Now this was in jest, but it's the kind of thing I totally get.)
So you'd think that it's the person who really did their best that is the 'better' way, right? But what if the get-by person actually gets better grades than the person who did their best? Is it still the better way?
But anyway, it's not really school that I care about, or was thinking about when I started on this thread.
So I do know that everyone is different and comes from a different place. So different ways of doing things should be equally valid, maybe. Except mainly everyone is trying to become better--trying to reach perfection, if you will. So perfection is a point say up high, and everyone starts funneling toward it, and as they go higher into the funnel they get more and more alike. So, then maybe some ways are better--they are the higher, more perfect ways. Then again, if everyone is different, maybe there are different ways of being perfect. Except I don't really buy that exactly.
Take me for example, I'm sitting here writing random, non-understandable junk when I should be mopping my kitchen floor. My mother would NEVER be on the computer wasting time when there was a floor to mop. In fact, my mother would have mopped the floor six hours ago if this were her house. To tell the whole truth, she probably would have mopped the kitchen floor about four times between now and the last time I mopped it. But then, maybe she actually mops too much--I mean, there has to be a point where there's actually too much mopping, at the expense of other things. Perhaps I'm not so far wrong to spend my time in other good pursuits. Or perhaps both ways are just as good. So, maybe I am just rambling all this because I'm trying to figure out if I can excuse my unmopped floor by arguing that there are separate but equal ways of doing things.

Another question of a non-philisophical nature. Why do all of the pants of all of your kids get holes in the knees at the SAME time??

Monday, January 7, 2008

Many topics.

So I decided I need to really REALLY exercise. I would say exercise more, but that would lead to the wrong idea that I actually exercise at all, which is untrue. But I can feel my muscles start to atophy, and I probably can't throw a football across my backyard (okay, I really HOPE I can, since my backyard is pretty small), but anyway--back to the point--I just don't find my Cindy Crawford workout video at all exciting and I don't like jogging and with three kids I don't know how to do anything more fun. Brett said I need to buck up and do it anyway, cause it's not like most people really find exercise fun. But I do find lots of exercise fun---sports, swimming, dancing, hiking, it's just hard to do those things right now. So. Anyone want to go play raquetball with me every morning?

I'm probably on this rampage right now only because I just spent the entire weekend curled up reading the Twilight series, and so didn't move or walk or do anything to get any energy out so I was feeling like a convalescent by the time I was done. The first night I finished Twilight at midnight or so and then, because the dumb thing has a chapter of the next book in the first one I got the next book out and started reading it and read till 3:45 when Brett woke up and realized I was still reading and yelled at me to get in the bed right then. Ooops. It's not my fault! I take no responsibility for my poor behavior--I blame it all on my genes. My dad stayed up reading whole nights when he read the Work and the Glory books--then went to work, then came home and slept on the couch.
Anyway, my opinion on the books is fairly low. They do (obviously) keep you turning the pages, but I simply canNOT sympathize with someone who can't figure out who she's in love with. The whole last book was Bella saying "oh, I'm breaking everybody's hearts but can't seem to stop myself, wah-wah-wah" over and over. Get a grip. Anyway. Oh, and the talk about immortality made me think of the book Tuck Everlasting (which is a PHENOMENAL book), and the talk about the vampires extra senses made me think of X-Men, and there was a vampire book by Robin McKinley that came out only a few years ago that was much the same too. (Not that I'm saying no author should ever write a book that's similar to another--otherwise there'd never be any new books, I'm just noting that all of these things came to mind.)

Anyway, if you want to read a TRULY good fantasy novel, read The Perilous Gard. THAT is worth reading over and over and over!
So, last week there was snow, and today was soooooo WARM! It was awesome! It was Jethro's first day back to school and so I took the kids in the stroller to pick him up, and we stayed and played on the playground for a while. Jethro pretended to be a pirate, and he started chasing me and Hazel, and then Hazel and Jethro became pirates and ganged up on me, and I really had to actually run fast to get away from the two of them--Jethro was SOOOO mad. He kept screaming, "That's no fair!!!! You can't run at top speed!!!" And I was like, "But I have to run at top speed or you would get me!" Anyway, it did much good for my lazy self. Jethro finally grabbed me at the end, and then Hazel came barreling into me and we all fell over and I was laughing so hard I couldn't even get up. So so so fun.
Hazel is so clutzy--seriously it is amazing. One of the nursery workers was saying how he was going to miss Hazel, how she's always happy and then his wife mentioned, "and she's such a great colorer--she has such amazing fine motor skills," and Brett's like, "Yeah, too bad she doesn't have any gross motor skills." hee hee. But he told me about this conversation at dinner time, and then he was talking on the phone with his parents later, and during the time he was on the phone she fell over or ran into something about 4 times. We laughed so hard every time. That girl really needs to learn to watch wear she's going. :)

Ethne has been SOOOOO ornery lately. It's not really her fault, since I think two or three teeth have been coming in at once, but really, she's been a bear. Last night she was being a little bit nicer, and giving Brett a few half-smiles, and Brett and I were shocked and decided it was like seeing the sun after 40 days and 40 nights of rain. Poor girl.
I made chore charts for the kids and it has seriously been FANTASTIC!!! I can't figure out why I didn't do this sooner. Hazel and Jethro have been making their beds everyday, their clothes actually go where they're supposed to go, Jethro sweeps under the table every day, has done dishes almost every day, they set the table, and Hazel has started putting her dishes in the dishwasher WITHOUT being told. It's AWESOME! Who knew that all I had to do was print out a silly little paper. Jethro says I should make one for me, and maybe that would be a good idea, then again, it would probably only help if my mom was checking it.
Hmm, what else is new? My little sister Lindsay, who's turning 19 in a month, just got braces. She SAYS it's because she's always wanted them (her teeth are not crooked, well maybe on the bottom a little, but not noticeably), but I know that it's because she thinks that way no one will ask her out for the next 18 months, thus making it a lot simpler to wait for her man while he's gone. Don't deny it Lindsay. You know it's true. ;)

One more story. This morning when I was still in bed, Jethro and Hazel came in to ask if they could watch a movie (what do they think I'm going to say---no, I think I'll get out of my warm cozy bed and actually take care of you--ha!) and when they were walking out, they started arguing about who got to choose the movie, and Hazel started getting upset and I heard Jethro explaining to her about Choosing the right, how that means doing what Jesus would do--I can't really remember if he was trying to persuade her to let him pick, or if he was letting her pick to set the example--but I thought it was so sweet! He just got his CTR ring from church yesterday, so I was so impressed.

Well, that's all, folks.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008


First, I just have to say that Kami's case of morning sickness was the most contagious I've ever heard of. She had it, then Leo, then Ethne, then Jethro. Okay, so it was really the flu (although Kami really is pregnant and had been sick due to that.) So our New Year's festivities were not quite as festive as they could have been. But we still had fun. A nice couple in Kami's ward had a little party at their house, and as they are from Europe and had just had a visit from their French parents, they shared real European cheese with us. Brett was in HEAVEN. I think his resolve to move to Switzerland was completely solidified.

When we got home, we had a leak in a pipe, so the carpet in our hallway was soaked, but Brett fixed the leak, and we kept vacuuming up the water with our shop vac, and it's all good. It felt nice just to put the kids to bed and watch a movie. We watched Stardust, which was very good.

So, I think I already mentioned how Jethro has started writing by sound now. It is really so exciting to me, though I realize it's probably one of those things that's not as exciting to everyone else as it is to me. In fact, I can imagine that it really won't be JUST as exciting when the next kids start doing it (makes you think about how the firsts in a family may get different treatment--high expectations, lots of attention etc.). Anyway. It is fun stuff, so here's some examples. This above, "I love mom" was the first thing Jethro started writing all on his own after his name. AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!

Do you know what this says? Tales of the Sea. He has the V in 'of' mixed up, but it's pretty cool, nonetheless.

And, this one--- My mom is the nicest girl. Awwwwwww again!!!!!!! And I didn't even tell him to write that. Okay, maybe I did. I can't seem to remember exactly....

And here is a book he wrote and illustrated all by himself. It was a month or so ago, so I did the writing for him, but I only wrote exactly what he said. The concept is all his. I don't know if you can easily see the words, so I'll write them for you.
Cover page: Mice Hide, Cat Purr by Jethro J Bell
Illustrated by Jethro J Bell

The cat chased the mice. The mice hid behind the tree. (His mice are very good, don't you think? The shape of their heads is excellent.)

The farmer found the mice and put them in a place to live with lots of cheese. (I think the farmer is so cool looking.)

The mice were happy with all of the cheese. There were three loaves of cheese. (I like his word choice there--loaves.) :)

The mice were settling in at night to go to sleep and they had to be really quiet because the cat was by their cage, but the mice did not get harmed. (Getting more verbose--I specifically remember talking about how wordy kindergarteners are in one of my speech path classes. They'll go on and on and on and on and their sentences will be forever long.)

The mice were sound asleep and the cat was too. It was almost dawn and the mice were actually awake but the cat wasn't.
(The End)

Great story, isn't it? I'm so proud. ;)

And a few pieces of artwork by Hazel. Remember the Christmas presents I made for my sister's family? How I cut out a picture of their faces and glued them on a canvas and painted their bodies? Anyway, as I was working feverishly on them one day, trying to finish so I could mail them in time for Christmas, Hazel came in and asked if she could use some of my papers, then my scissors, then my glue. These are what she made.

Uncle Tim:

Miriam, and Aunt Andrea. Awesome.

And a little something about Ethne, so she's not left out. When all my kids were born, my mom made them quilts. They all love them and sleep with them every night. They're all tied, and when Jethro was little, when we put him to bed he would grab one of the patches of yarn and rub it between his fingers and thumb. Every night--like a little comfort routine. Anyway, he doesn't do it anymore, but the other night I noticed Ethne doing it too! Very interesting, isn't it. I thought so too.

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