Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Do I Look Crazy?

This afternoon, I took 6 kids to Target. Did you hear me right? SIX. KIDS. I took my 3, 2 neighbors, and 1 of the twins.

A few people did ask, "are all those girls yours?" I even saw a few gawk at me. I was gawking at myself. At one point, the baby was fussy so I was carrying her through the store with the other 5 ducklings following and pushing the cart. A woman commented to me, "wow, you must have been really bored to bring all your kids here." Huh? Is that what most women do when they're bored? Haul 6 kids to the store? My idea of boredom is having nothing to do. Geez, boredom sounds fantastic. Don't ya think? That's my wish for the new year--boredom. Scratch that--boredom and a cupcake.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

The Twelve Moments Of Christmas

1. Extreme elation that comes when a Nana bypasses all parental arguments and buys Sam EXACTLY what she wants. She is no longer the lone human in the universe who doesn't have a cell phone.

2. Hearing Makell exclaim, "All my dreams came true!" Then watching her zip out the door and realizing that 15 mph is really fast.

3. Finding a present that so eloquently describes the recipient.

4. For the child who loves bacon--bacon bandaids.

5. ....and gummy bacon.

6. Fulfilling an obsession for dry erase markers (to teach school with).

7. Santa giving exactly what was asked for.

8. Sweet babies to hold.

9. Matching jammies.

10. An ingenious use for the boppy pillow.

11. 70 degree weather in the middle of winter.
Perfect temperature for a tetherball showdown.

12. Falling asleep at 5:00 pm from an overabundance of excitement.


Monday, December 22, 2008


"According to the Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game, while both male and female reindeer grow antlers in the summer each year, mail reindeer drop their antlers at the beginning of winter. Female reindeer retain their antlers until spring, after they give birth. According to every historical and artistic rendition depicting Santa's reindeer, they all have antlers. Therefore, every single one of them, from Rudolph to Blitzen, are female. We should have known. Only women would be able to drag a fat man in a red velvet suit all around the world in one night and not get lost."

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Miracle

Look what Santa flew in on his Continental sleigh.
Double Christmas joy.
We are over the moon.

Now at 6.5 pds.

Now at 4.3 pds.

Compared to these girls, I doubt that anything opened on Christmas day will be as thrilling. New toys just can't compete with new babies. If you put your nose up to the computer screen I bet you could smell that sweet baby smell. It's intoxicating. I think I'm going to find a way to keep them. I doubt my sister will mind. It is the season of giving after all.....

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Fa La La La La

Christmas songs just sound better when played by your own children.

I'm sure they are going to thank me one day for forcing, I mean persuading, them to practice....right?

Friday, December 19, 2008


Every now and then, I have a blip of genius. It just happens. The last time my brilliance sparkled brightly was when I had the girls convinced it was my birthday. When it really wasn't. I just wanted to see if they would be nice to me. Todd told them the truth and ruined my plan. He's such a downer that way.

A few weeks ago, genius showed back up. I made up an imaginary dog. A-Mazing! I'm like the smartest mom ever! All the people in this house (excluding myself) really want a dog. Not happenin'. It's like buying a toddler and bringing it into your home. Oh, and this toddler isn't even covered by your insurance, and you have to pay to shack it up at a pet resort if you go on vacation. For reals not happening. So, as my genius was percolating, I realized that if there are imaginary friends, there can be imaginary dogs. Sweet.

This is Olivia (oh yes, I even gave our new dog a name):

I've talked about her for weeks and I think everyone is on board. Again, A-Mazing. Addie has now started schlepping this stuffed dog around and telling us that this is Olivia. The girls will ask me, "Well, where is Olivia right now?" I always respond, "Wherever you want her to be." Then they inquire, "What does Olivia eat?" "Whatever you want her to eat of course." I've explained to them that she is the perfect dog. So obedient and quiet.

The other night Todd even called to Olivia. Patted his hands on his thighs and leaned down and called to our puppy. It was at that moment that I knew I should be a member of the Menza Society. Honestly, if I can get a 43 yr. old man to beckon to an imaginary dog, I just might be the smartest person in Texas.

I'm toying with the idea of breeding Olivia. Nana told the girls that if our dog had puppies that she would buy one. They might be a little costly. With each puppy you also receive a Foster Child. A-Mazing.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Enough Already

What is it with this time of year? I have so much to do, take care of, clean, attend, blah, blah, blah. I think my head is going to explode. I know I am speaking collectively for all mothers. Explode. At least at that point the craziness would all stop. If I exploded, I wouldn't have to seach ONE-MORE-STORE for the one item I can't find!

While I was pulling into the parking lot of the 5th store on my list for the day, I remembered a childhood Christmas. It was the year of the Cabbage Patch dolls. I recalled my mom telling me when I was older about waiting in line for the store to open that year. And then all the mothers in a frenzy to grab the dolls. At the time I thought she was crazy. As I sat in the parking lot today, I realized she was a supermom.

For all of us who are stretched to our limits, maybe we could all plan to explode simultaneously. Wouldn't that be amazing!? A unified message, don't ya think? I just hope it doesn't mess up my hair.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Which Eternity Is It?

In Primary yesterday, the question was asked, "What do you think it will be like when Jesus comes again?" All the typical responses were given. But from the back of the room I heard, "There won't be any school!" He, he, giggle, giggle, crack a grin......

Wait a sec. Hold up......calm, cleansing breaths. OK, let's be rational and think about this. For eternity--is there school or isn't there? My personal belief holds true that school is a gift sent to mothers. A gift from heaven. Ah...so....what's the deal going to be for eternity? School or no school? Are they going to be with me all day, everyday, FOREVER!? panic, panic, lamaze breathing. I demand an answer!! I'm stomping my foot right now! Seriously! Don't you think that mothers everywhere need to know? What if no one goes to school? What will we do? Is there homeschooling in the eternities and no one has told me?! Oh my mercy goodness, I'm feeling faint.

Someone has to know the answer to this question. Maybe there was some fine print that I forgot to read somewhere: "Eternity will feel like one looong Sabbath Day." Is that how it will work? I'll grit my teeth and hold my breath for 3 hours hoping they don't do something too embarrassing, and then we will come home and everyone will fight and destroy the house? Really? Please, someone tell me. Hurry...

I'm thinking we should all sign a petition. If that doesn't work, I'm stocking up on valium.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Feels Like Home

The unbelievable happened today. It SNOWED! In Texas!
A cold front moved in last night and this morning it actually felt like the winter we are used to. By afternoon the flakes appeared. We started screaming from the excitement. I sat in my car and looked around at the snow, and felt a piece of my Utah home.

Snow is a phenomenon here. The last time it snowed (for an hour) was 4 years ago. As we drove down the street, kids were waving their hands out the windows trying to touch it. As we pulled up to Sam's school, teachers had let their students outside to run in it. Pure magic.

If you squint your eyes, you can see our Texas snowflakes:
The best place to catch a snowflake:

Soaking in the magic moment:
Don't worry about us freezing in Texas. It will be back up to 70 degrees by the weekend!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Fear Of The Fairy

Everyone is afraid of something. You know you are. I'm afraid of tons of stuff. The thought of sitting on an airplane makes me stop breathing. The thought of all the pills in the world disappearing makes me cry big, salty tears. Fear is irrational, that's what makes it so crazy.

Addie Bean is afraid of the tooth fairy. She has told us the fairy is a boy that is lurking around here every night. We have exhausted ourselves trying to explain that the fairy only does a quick drop-by when you lose a tooth. It's wasted words. She is convinced he is trying to get her. The other night she told me, "I am so sick of seeing the shadow of that tooth fairy's head!" I stared at her with intense curiosity. She continued, "His head! His head! I can see it! Will you call him and tell him I'm sick of it!?" It turns out that the haunting shadow is cast by the armrest of the chair in the family room. With scientific logic, I explained this to her. Again, wasted words. Every time she walks by that chair now, I hear her say to herself, "there's his head.....". The girl is only 6. She has a serious amount of teeth yet to fall out. The boy fairy is going to be around for a while.

Any advice about fear is welcome. You must consider your audience before offering. This child lives in THIS household. That already sets her threshold for crazy pretty high. I mean, come on, she is afraid of a boy with wings that brings you money. Sounds pretty fantastic to me, but I guess fairies can be scary. Especially those whose heads cast a shadow.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Today is your birthday.

I've thought of you all day. It's been painful because I miss you. My mind still lives in a realm where I can't accept that you are not here. I exist on the belief that you have to be here somewhere. You just have to, because my own existence is defined by it. I close my eyes and I can see you. I hear your voice on the other end of the phone. I cry and then quietly beg and plead for you to come back. Please just come home and walk through the door. Please just call and reassure us that everything will eventually work out.

Everywhere I go, I am reminded of you. I can't escape it. I never expected that my memories would haunt me with the reality of what I have lost for the future. It's as if the deepest part of my soul has gone missing and can't be replaced. Why has that happened? How can it be fixed? I'm sure there is no answer to satisfy my questions. And even if there were, the pain would still remain. It's always present. The prickly edges of the pain have slightly worn down, but its core is fixated inside me. I don't expect it will ever leave.

On this day I want you to know of my love for you--my gratitude for being your daughter. We all now work to live the kind of lives that will take us to where you are. You set the standard and we are trying to reach it. Before you left, I told you to wait for me there. Someday I will feel your hugs again and hear your voice. Until then, I will wait. I will think of you and teach my girls all that you taught me. I will wait.....

Happy birthday dad. I love you.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Candy Land

Andi is a Hawaiian goddess who has adopted my girls. She offers endless hugs and brings them treats every Sunday. She has WAY more energy than humanly normal. We love her. She invited the girls over to decorate gingerbread houses. She told us that this year she only made 32 houses (for all those coming to decorate). When I told her that I couldn't believe that she baked, cut out and sugared together 32 houses, she responded, "Oh, it was no big deal. I used to make 175!" That's a serious amount of frosting. I immediately envisioned bathing in it.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Something happened today that hasn't really happened to me before.....my hair moved. In the wind. (pause for gasp) I can't ever recall this happening before. It might have occurred once or twice when I was in 2nd grade, but definitely not any time after that. I'm opposed to hair movement and I'm pretty sure its against my religion. Everything in its place--including hair. I spray it in the morning and it should stay there. ALL day. Nary a hair out of place.

Lately, I have made a valiant effort to reduce my hairspray intake. I'm giving back to the environment. Me and Al Gore. So, because of my efforts, my hair is more free flowing. It's ridiculous and I can't stand it. It's too unpredictable. And, I know this is a shocking revelation....I don't do unpredictable. Ever.

When I was in high school, I had the best bangs ever. No kidding. I would rat them really high to form just the perfect nest. I would spray them solid and there they would stay. For a week. When the wind blew, the nest moved as one unit. I remember my mom telling me that one day I would wake up to find my massive bangs sitting beside me on the pillow. Like a rat. Ouch. I think that one scarred my self esteem a wee bit.

I have sometimes wondered what it's like for most people. Is there really anyone out there that doesn't have a testimony of hairspray? Oh snap. That would be sad. Honestly, I can't imagine that anyone like that even exists. Why live if you're just going to let your hair look ugly? Sheesh. That's dumb. Better take a hard look at your priorities.

After my experience today, I'm not sure if I will continue with my decreased hairspray usage. I'm going to pray about it and then I'll decide. I'll keep you posted...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Weebles Wobble

This is Sam and her backpack. Do you see how she is leaning? It's all the weight of the backpack. Mostly it's her laptop and the crazy heavy battery. She carries this all day long. Leaning like she does. I watched her the other day and realized that when she walks, it looks like she is giving her backpack a piggy back ride. So, I decided to weigh the big, black burden: 18.5 pds. Sam weighs 65 pds. Hmmm, that might explain the leaning.