Monday, January 31, 2011

List list list.

1. The other day Ethne said “How do babies get in your tummy?” and in the moments I was pondering what to say, Hazel jumped in and explained it very well.  “Well, the spirit is in heaven, and then it comes doooooown (said while moving her hand from above her head downwards) to the tummy, so it can get a body.”  Well done.

(p.s. I think this picture of Orrin and I turned out pretty nice, only I hate all the junk in the background.  We had to be right in front of the window to get any light.  Any of you photoshopping pros out there who know how to make it look like a nice, neutral background want to do it for me?)IMGP4804

2.  We did a LOOOOT of laundry on Saturday.  About 10-12 franks’ worth.  I had a lot of folding to do this morning. 

3.  Last night my baby started talking to me.  I LOOOOVE that when babies start looking intently at you and opening their mouth and giving tiny little coos.  He did it with Brett this evening too.  So sweet.

4.  The other day I went to a second-hand store and when I went to the door it was locked, and I was annoyed because I can never seem to get to that store when it’s open because of its weird hours, so I was shaking my fist at it, and then the lady came to the door and started unlocking it.  Then I was embarrassed. 


5.  The reason I was at the second-hand store was to buy some Christmas presents for Brett.  I had wanted to get this one sweater and a movie (Master and Commander, one of Brett’s favorite movies (he also loved the books and read all fourteen hundred or so of them)) BEFORE Christmas, but unfortunately, I put it off until the last couple of days before Christmas, and when I finally got there it had already closed for Christmas break.  So I thought I was a wife-fail.  (Have you seen the fail-blog videos?  Hilarious.)  But guess what?  Last week was a store-wide 50% off sale.  So, NOT a fail!  Who cares if it was under the Christmas tree—I saved a chunk of $$$.

6. Besides, when I told Brett at Christmastime about my fail, he said, “That’s okay.  It’ll make me feel better that I didn’t get anything for you.”  If you didn’t catch it, we’re not big gifters.  Gifts are not the love language for either of us.  Not that I don’t really like it when I get them.  (And I did get something- my Christmas present was glasses/contacts, remember.  My trial pair of contacts is on its way.)

7. Which reminds me, I had another eye appointment on Friday (to order the contacts, since the first time I went I thought I would get glasses, then changed my mind), and so I was driving to Brett’s work to drop off the kids with him while I was at the appointment.  Unfortunately, I got lost.  At one point I was very close to the street I was supposed to be on, and yet, not on it.  In fact, I may have been on a street that is just for buses, but I’m not sure.  Anyway, I got way out of where was supposed to be (it’s even hard to find places to pull over in Bern, it’s not like the States where every little store has a big old parking lot out front!).  Then I called Brett and he gave me some directions, and unfortunately I got lost again.  Then I called him again and with his help, finally got there.  I HATEHATEHATEHATEHATEHATEHATE driving in cities!!!  I have no directional sense whatsoever.  When I called Brett and told him the street I was on, he asked me if I was facing north or south on it and I had no idea.  I get more tense when I am lost in a city than anything else in life, I think.  I get so stressed.  The poor children totally take the hit, and if they make any noise at all, not to mention whining or fighting with each other, I jump down their throats and yell at them to be silent.  It’s not fun.  So anyhoo, when I finally got there, Jethro and Hazel said “Good job Mom, you made it!”  and I was kindof laughing because if it was a good job I wouldn’t have spent the last 40 minutes driving around needlessly.  I missed my appt. but they were able to fit me in a bit later, which worked out well.  By the way, did I mention I had directions printed out and had been to Brett’s work before several times?  Yeah.  I’m lame.  Brett won husband of the year for not harassing me at all (until the following day).

8. I loved Orrin in his spiffy church clothes yesterday.  He was soo cute!  Too bad it was sooo overcast that the pictures didn’t turn out as well as they could have.


9.  By the way, you may be thinking how can a second-hand sweater be a cool Christmas present anyway?  Well, fear not, it’s Coo-Wul.  I’ll post pictures when he wears it.  (He was going to wear it to church this Sunday, but the pants to go with it were in the laundry.  See #2.)

10.  Also on Sunday, Brett was teaching a lesson during the third hour of church.  He’s in the elder’s quorum presidency, and they were presenting their message about emergency preparedness.  So this girl was sitting by me and translating for me (I love everyone who translates for me!!!) and when Brett mentioned me, she translated it, “my beloved wife” and then we were laughing and making jokes about how men should ALWAYS have somebody translating for them and saying things like how wonderful and beautiful their wives are and other things they mean, but forget to say.  Ha ha.  It was funny.  Perhaps you had to be there.

11.  Mom, Brett told me to thank you for your great example of emergency preparedness because when he was finished with his spiel and still had 15 minutes left to go, he told the story of the train wreck and fertilizer in the air and how you had your 72-hour kits at the ready so you could grab them and go. 

12.  It was my dad and my brother’s birthday yesterday.  Happy birthday to Dad and Wyatt!  You can go feel the love for them here and here and here and here.


13.  Lindsay, Brett just came by to hand me Orrin, and he happened to see a picture from one of the posts I was linking to of you and Alan, and he said, “Hey, that’s not what’s-his-face!”  It was hilarious.  I laughed really hard. 

14.   Hi Sterling!  Love you!

15.  I think I’m almost incapable of writing a post anymore without making it a list.

16. The end.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I had to wait to post this until after my little sister had announced that she was pregnant.  Here ‘tis:

Today (the Wednesday after having Orrin on Sunday morning), I was feeling a bit emotional and very VERY sore, and then I started chatting with my sister Lindsay on facebook.  She’s just barely pregnant with her first baby (like six weeks along) and I asked her how it was going.  She said, "Well besides very sensitive breasts, it’s mostly good.  Just that I wake up starving but nothing sounds good to eat.” 

And I totally had to laugh, because I was like, “I’m sorry you have sensitive breasts.  I feel your pain, seeing as how I have great big, rock-hard, excruciating bowling balls attached to my chest right now.”  Hilarious.  Ahh, the joys of engorgement.


Then Lindsay said, “Yeah, I liked it when my breasts were small insignificant parts of my body better.”  Amen, sister!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Update of all people Bell.

1.  Me?  I’m tired at the moment and wishing I hadn’t eaten all the chocolate chip cookies earlier today (much to my children’s chagrin), so that I had some to eat now.  Tomorrow I am going to get my hair trimmed, which it has been needing for quite some time now, so that will be good.
2.  That reminds me that I’m also supposed to be getting contacts ordered this week.  For Christmas I said I wanted new glasses, but I went to my appt and my prescription hadn’t changed much at all.  Also, even though Brett and I know that everything in Switzerland is three times as expensive, it still kindof killed me when I saw the total cost of getting new glasses would be.  And I didn’t really find any frames that I absolutely loved, so I wondered if I should just forget the whole thing and get new glasses when I get back to the wonderful world of Wal-Mart, and they won’t cost half our life-savings.  But now I think I’ll get contacts because how awesome would it be to maybe wear sunglasses, or actually be able to see when I go swimming?! and I’ve wanted to get some for several years now.  Last time I tried it they didn’t work though.  I tried two different pairs and never could stop feeling like I was twirling, so I gave up.  I hope it works this time!
3.  That reminds me that the other day the kids were watching the movie Swiss Family Robinson, and that family is from Bern, did you know that?  And so when Fritz and Ernst were talking about things in Bern, they mentioned Marktgasse, which made me feel totally cool because I know where that is and walk down that street all the time.  In fact it’s where my eye exam was, which is what brought this up.  (This picture is me and my friend Talitha from church.  She’s a cool girl.)
4.  Speaking of things to watch, lately I’ve been absolutely riveted by the show ‘Who’s the Boss?’ because for some weird reason I looked it up on youtube when I was feeding Orrin one day (instead of the Cosby Show which is what I would normally pass the time with).  Tony Danza is cute and HILARIOUS, and I was completely hooked.  I told Kami this and then later she told me she watched a couple shows and was not impressed.  But watch this clip and tell me it’s not hilarious!

who's the boss
5.  Speaking of Who’s the Boss, a show from the eighties, why is it that women’s fashion styles change so drastically so quickly and men’s hardly at all?  It’s a little unfair.  And why were glasses the size of car tires ever in style?  WHYYYY?  And p.s. every time Angela slips off her clip-on earring before answering the phone it reminds me of my mom doing that on Sundays when she wore her clip-on earrings.  And p.s.s. did you know Tony Danza was a boxer before he was an actor?
6. Moving on.  Brett is doing well.  Right now he is sitting on the couch with his laptop on his lap, sleeping.  It’s what he always does in the evening.  Start reading a book, fall asleep.  Start doing work on his computer, fall asleep.  Silly guy.
7.  The other day I asked Brett how much it would cost to feed one cow if you didn’t have any of your own grass or anything, and he started scribbling down figures and doing the math and gave me a very rough estimate.  Then I was asking a few other questions and he was all excited and said, “I LOVE talking about these kinds of things!”  Crazy kid.
8.  By the way, our family spends about $1,000 (well, actually not dollars, but franks) on milk in a year.  We drink about 3 liters a day, and we can get our milk at the farm next door for a frank/liter.  Moo.
9.  Another thing Brett said that I love--  I asked him, “You know how everyone says marriage is hard work?  Do you think it is?”  and he opened his mouth to start saying something, then closed it, paused, and said, “Is this a trick question?”  Ha haaa!  (by the way, he was going to say no, but didn’t want to imply that he never worked on our marriage-as in working on improving it, etc.)   I sure love him.
10.  So, Brett went to parent-teacher conferences the other evening, and came home with some very shocking and disappointing news about Jethro’s performance in school.  We laid down an addiction-recovery program plan for him, and feel that he will soon be back to his usual successes.  Because if he can pull his nose out of a book long enough to do his homework, that should automatically start improving things, right? (We were under the impression that he always finished his homework at school.)
11.  I felt quite frustrated again after we heard about this, about not being able to communicate with Jethro’s teacher, or read the letters and things that come from school.  Grrr.
12.  Hazel wrote me a letter in school today.  She’s really coming along in her reading and writing, although she is sometimes confused at what the vowels say, because of course they’re different in German and English.  Basically she’s learning to read both languages at the same time.  She told me that one of the kids in her class noticed this letter and saw that it was in English and started trying to read it, so then she read it to me like he had read it, with the German pronunciation.  Hard to explain, but it was very funny.
13.  This is her school picture.  Isn’t it cute?  (It looks better in real life, this is a picture of the picture.)  I don’t know why Jethro never had pictures taken.  Weird.
14.  Ethne is crazy.  She says crazy things all the time.  And she likes to sing.  And she likes to watch t.v. (or rather, youtube).  Here she is with her doll stroller that she got for Christmas (it came from the side of the road—awesome find!) and her diaper bag. 
15.  Talmage is cute.  And he likes to get into things and make messes and wear people’s shoes and read books, and lately he has been stealing carrots from the fridge and eating a bit of them and then leaving them around the house.
16.  Orrin is a sweetie-petey.  The poor guy had a rash on his face.  It was pretty bad, but I’m happy to say that it’s definitely on the mend.  He also had a hip ultrasound yesterday (apparently it’s something they do here quite often), and he’s cleared to play soccer.  :) 
17. His shirt says 'Always happy’ and when I bought it I thought that it was rather presumptuous of me to get it.  Who knew if he would be perpetually happy or not at that point?  In fact, I rather feared I would jinx myself buying it, but so far he fits it quite well.  (Even though he doesn’t look all that happy in this picture.) 
18.  A while back I said that I would write about some of my new year resolutions, but I don’t really feel like getting in to them as deep anymore.  You know, because the year’s not so new anymore?  Ha ha.  Anyhow, to be very brief, I really want to PLAN PLAN PLAN our time this coming year (not really our daily time, but our trip/vacation time), since it will be our last year here.  I want to make sure we’ve done our darndest to see as many things as we can, and that what we do do is what is at the top of our list to do.  Am I being clear?  Okay, go HERE (and while you’re there, take a look around more posts on the blog.  It’s… awesome).
That’s how I generally like to roll.  And while that’s all well and good sometimes, I just don’t want to look back after we’ve left Switzerland and feel regretful that I didn’t take all possible opportunities for doing the things we could have. 
So I’ve been planning.  A trip for the whole family in the summer to Croatia, maybe coming back through Italy.  A trip for Brett and I and Orrin in the spring to Spain (except this may not be coming along as well as I could hope because Orrin needs a passport first, and paperwork is DUMB and takes TOO LONG).  A trip for just Brett and I in the fall to Greece.  (Brett doesn’t know about that, but I say- for crying out loud if we don’t just do it now we never will!  It’s our ten-year anniversary this year too, so I think that calls for something amazing, right?)  Also there’s the week that my parents are here to plan awesome things for.  Not to mention EVERY SINGLE WEEKEND!  We have a lot of Switzerland and Europe to see before we go back to the homeland.
19.  I had some other goals too.  For instance, I ordered a post-pregnancy workout DVD and have even done it more than twice!  But I now remember one reason why I don’t like exercising—it really cuts into your relaxing time.  Another goal I told Brett was to be cuter—to buy some clothes that are actually cute (this is my I-just-had-a-baby-and-haven’t-bought-any-new-clothes-for-nine-months self talking).  Brett said that was the worst resolution he’s ever heard, and he said ‘What does being cute have to do with your eternal salvation?’  and of course I had to say that it doesn’t, but obviously not every resolution has to do with your eternal salvation.
20.  I kindof want to go through the year’s pictures and post my favorites.  Wouldn’t that be fun.  We’ll see if I get around to it.
21.  Now I’m going to bed, so The end.

cute ad I want to remember the pose from

Monday, January 24, 2011

Talmage, happy and sad.

My handsome, handsome, handsome kid. How I love him. His big, gorgeous blue eyes, his adorable cheeks, his happy smiley, mischievous mouth.

How he hates getting his picture taken. (At first. Until I do something funny enough to make him laugh.)

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Come on, tell me how adorable he is. Don’t try to deny it. He is a bit pesky, though. He bites and makes messes and tonight when we playing Jenga for FHE, he knocked over the game twice. But you know, his cuteness makes up for it. Easily.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Nature walk.


I love this picture.  It looks like Orrin (I just wrote Talmage, then I deleted it and wrote it again.  Basically poor Orrin is always called ‘TalOrrin’.) is really settled in to the family.  :)



Last week’s weather was just beautiful.  SUNNY and 50ish degrees.  We had to go out for a little walk.  Here’s Hazel by a rock covered in cool green growth:


Closeup of the cool green growth:

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Daddy and Orrin:

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Cute little Orrin:


I call these next shots ‘Movement’ (aka blurry):IMGP4525 IMGP4526 IMGP4527   IMGP4546 IMGP4548 IMGP4549

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the prettiest animated Disney female of all?


I always dismiss Cinderella, Aurora, and Snow White (and most of those others in the above picture) out of hand, because…I just don’t think they’re pretty.

I do think Belle is pretty though.  Plus she likes to read, and while that doesn’t make her prettier, it does make her cool.

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I did like The Little Mermaid when I was a kid, I was only in kindergarten or so when it came out, and she had red hair for goodness sake, so I had to like her.  However, she can certainly be annoying, and a lot of the time she’s actually not that pretty, except one particular part where I think she is:

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Now Jane, well, I love Jane.  She’s really awesome and funny …but I’m afraid awesome and funny doesn’t win you the prettiest contest (not that she’s bad looking, just a little goofy—in a good way, of course).

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Tinkerbell is actually very pretty, but for some reason she doesn’t seem to ever get mentioned in these kind of contests.  She’s not a princess, nor the main female protagonist, but I like her.  Very feisty.


A newer one—Giselle—quite cute too.  What color would you call her hair?  Is it red?  Strawberry blonde?  (This picture doesn’t look as red as a lot of others.)  And by the way I LOOOOVE that movie.  I totally did not expect to like it so much.


BUT….. many people fail to look back into Disney annals for some more interesting candidates.  Such as Molly – from ‘The Saga of Windwagon Smith.’  Now THERE is a foxy lady.  She’s got some AWESOME hair.

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Gorgeous eyes

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And I’ve never seen a Disney girl dressed anywhere near as classy as her.  I LOVE her dress (and hat and umbrella) here:

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You’ve just got to admit that she’s a knockout!

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And then there’s Slue Foot Sue from ‘Pecos Bill’ –the first female woman Bill ever saw.

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Again with some gorgeous eyes (that Pecos Bill goes swimming in):

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Not only is she beautiful, but what’s more attractive than a cowgirl with boots and a hat?

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Can I help it if all the most beautiful girls are redheads?  I cannot.

BUT duh duh duh DUHHHHH… my pick for The Most Beautiful Disney Female:

Tarzan’s mother.  Yes, she only has about 1 minute of screen time (maybe that’s why I like her so much, she doesn’t have any time to do anything silly to lose your respect), but I think she’s just beautiful.

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But maybe she won some points with me just because her husband has AWESOME facial hair.

The end.

(Who gets your vote?)

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