Monday, April 29, 2013

Airplanes and Tutus

We go together like.....

...Peanut Butter and Jelly.
...Fries and a Frosty.
...Bert and Ernie.
...Airplanes and tutus.

Did that last one throw you off? Sorry.  Life of an almost 4 year old deems that airplanes and tutus do in fact belong together.  So much so that he freaks out if is airplane is missing its tutu.  It all began rather innocently. We're trying to teach the kids about money by giving them an allowance.  They pay a %10 tithe and then the rest they can spend how they choose (though Mommy tries to talk them out of buying goodies with them because Mommy already buys/makes too many goodies as it is). So what do they set their hearts on? Toys of course.  Because they don't have too many of those yet.... We were at our "local" (local being the next town over) secondhand store a few weeks ago and the boys were insistent that they NEEDED to spend their allowance.  So I let them.  They fought over who got the train.  Ian did because he really did see it and claim it first.  Then Landon was left to choose something ELSE.  And he found a stuffed airplane.  He loves it and now sleeps with it. 

Fast forward to a little over a week ago.  I ordered some tulle for my sister in law's wedding this summer. I offered to make outfits for the nieces and nephews if she desired and she found what she wanted me to make. For the little girls she requested something akin to THIS .  So I set out on a rather large and daunting task.  I've never made a tutu before.  Or a tutu dress.  I ordered the tulle from (I love And then it came in the mail.  Mail days are like Christmas.  CRAFTY mail days are especially awesome. Whip out the tulle.  Check my supplies for elastic.  Dang. One piece left about 10 or 12 inches.  Not enough to make a mockup.  But enough for a bear tutu.  Red and white with yellow ribbon around the top.  (A picture here would be lovely wouldn't it?  The problem with upgrading to a sleeker smaller camera is that I often can't find it.) Ian graciously let me put it on Teddy (his beloved bear) and I even added a bow to his ear.  Very chic. Very cute.  When Teddy is dressed up in his tutu ensemble he is to be called "Cutie" not Teddy.  I was informed.  In walks little brother.  Green with envy.  HIS bear did not have a tutu.  Well Teddy was done with the tutu after a day or so.  Remember the allowance money stuffed airplane?  It now proudly wears the tutu and is no longer complete with out it.  At least the airplane is ok with still being called Airplane.  

Funny things Landon says (who will be 4 in just under 4 weeks, oh my!):

"I'm taking my Turkey and my Airplane to bed with me."  (and now you can envision the WHOLE picture- complete with tutu.  
"Three for Partycakes."  What's partycakes?  I don't know but apparently three of us are waiting for them.  
"We don't have Mop." Meaning he wants to mop.  Why? Why not?

(those last two were just while I was typing). 

And to those of you still reading: I leave you with a treat, a la Blackmail: 

I got my mockup dress done with the help of my fantastic model. 
 I hope he's not scarred about this later. 
And yes- it's a little too long. It'll get a trim soon. 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Red Dirt and lots of it!

Small town life.

Con: Stores close at 8 or 9 or 6pm. Shop early. 
Pro: This means you're forced to get everything done and then can have actual FAMILY time. 

Con: Middle of "no-where".
Pro: Within a couple hours of Arches, Grand Canyon, Mesa Verde, Canyonlands, Natural Bridges and other NATURAL wonders.

Con: Less People. 
Pro: You find a few good friends and ya stick with 'em.  Also traffic? What's that? 

Con: One stop light.
Pro: Out of town-ers mistake it for an actual stoplight instead of a blinking red.  Nobody knows when to go. Thus providing a good laugh.  Unless you're from here- in which case you grumble about "tourists" and "it's a 4-way stop buddy".  But I still think of myself as a transplant and thus smile when they're stuck waiting for a green light that will never come.  

While coming home from taking Ian to school this morning I was thinking about how much of living in a more populous area doesn't mean you actually know more people- generally we know people based on where our kids go to school and what activities they're involved in- at least that's how I know people.  Usually.  Here we have one elementary school, one middle school and one high school.  And you know the people in your district because you go to work with them and go to church with them and see them at the grocery store.  Given- there is a lack of choice (home school or public school) but I don't think it's all that bad.  And living "in the big city" (read: more than 20,000 people) you have access to more shopping options, more entertainment options and more places, in general, to spend money.  Here, we have less easy options to spend money.  Usually we have to make our own fun.  Though we are getting our first ever bowling alley and are all pretty excited about it. So make our own fun we do. Like yesterday.  Sean had the day off of work for Navajo Nation Sovereignty Day.  I thought we'd go to a National park since this week is National Park week and we're so close.  (It also means FREE this week and free is good.)  But instead we worked together at our house. 

We have no end to projects at our house. No really, I'm pretty sure they'll NEVER END! Gearing up for summer there's talk of gardens and yards and water (because we're in a drought and NEED water badly-praying, fasting, hoping for it.)  Our yard is.... large. But also very sad.  It's been neglected and abused and used as a dump for the last seven years.  Thus our biggest job right now is CLEAN UP.  People often comment on how nice our yard is looking and I think, "But all we did was spend an afternoon cleaning up garbage." Yet that's how big the impact is.  I don't think our ground will grow anything but weeds.  And red ants.  We have oodles of them.  But there are no worms.  Just red dirt and alfalfa where grass is supposed to be (though we won't be putting in much grass- remember desert?) So we mow the alfalfa and pretend we have grass (though I think I'm MORE allergic to alfalfa than grass- and that's saying something.) Back to all this talk of gardens.  I feel like we need to try and grow something.  Self-sustaining. Kid teaching.  Good things gardening teaches us (as Master Yoda would say). Purpose. Direction.  But I don't grow things well.  Sean does.  Which is why I'm glad he's part of this whole operation.  And our yard is icky.  I wanted to CONTAIN the garden so it doesn't get overwhelming and so it might actually stand a chance.  After much discussing we decided on making a box in which to grow our salsa garden (because that's our favorite thing about summer).  Sean made the box out of remaining lumber.  we put a crappy sheet down to allow for drainage but also to block weeds out- no buying the fancy stuff for us (it's an experiment of sorts- to see if buying the fancy black fabric stuff matters or if we can do the same thing with regular ol' fabric I have on hand.) Then the dirt.  Oh my the dirt.  We have to shovel it from what will eventually be the lower terrace and wheelbarrow it over to the box.  It's maybe a quarter to a third full. (the rocks are to help the gaps-because the ground is not level yet) But we had good help.  See?

The handprints are butterflies...sorta.

We'll be busy the rest of the week filling it with dirt. 

All in all a good day off from the office I'd say. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Stop. Eating. My. Deodorant.

 "Stop eating my DEODORANT!" I cried for the billionth time as I wondered if I should feed my kids more often.  Which of course led to a lovely round of mommyguilt. (Note: My kids get 3 square meals a day and snacks inbetween that do NOT include deodorant.)

Then I found this blog.  And I feel much better.  

Laughed so hard I cried. 

My kids looked at me like I'd lost it. 

Maybe I had. 

Just a little. 

If you're a mom- please take a minute.  Your sanity is worth it.  

You're welcome. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


Dan, a blogger, wrote a post a while back "The Disease Called Perfection".  It's worth a gander.  We get so caught up in appearances that we forget to be real and forget those we idolize are real too. 
So here's a glimpse at my real life (mostly so *I* remember to give myself a break). 


-We are trying to get out of debt.  Which means we drive cars that are 20, and 17 years old. Which means they break down occasionally.  Like this week. (Wheel bearing) So I don't have a vehicle and will be walking to help at Ian's class today.  Not a big deal and better for my health for sure.  But it's COLD outside.  My ears hurt when we got home from walking Ian to school. Blessed to live close enough to do that but still kinda bummed my easy option is gone.   
-We also live in an unfinished house because we're being frugal.  Now, we do happen to have shelter from the storm and for that I am intensely grateful.  I just wish that we had more to show sometimes. Though I'm grateful beyond words that our mortgage is %13 of our take home pay.  Which is why we're trying to get rid of the student loans and credit card debt so we'll have more moolah to spend on our house- or say, a new car.  
-I have these headaches that I'm beginning to think are just a part of life.  They're not a big deal but it's annoying.  I thought it was caffeine.  So I cut that out.  Nope. I thought I needed more water.  So I added more of that.  Nope.  I thought it was sleep.  It still could be that.  I've tried a bajillion different pillows and some help more but none is quite on the money.  I wake up with neck pain. Which leads to a headache.  And allergies mean my sinuses are continually congested- again a possible reason for the headaches.  So not a big deal to anyone outside my head.  But real. 
-My three year old (almost 4) is putting tiny hair rubber bands into the sheath for my sewing scissors.  Weird? Maybe.  But benign. And kinda cute to see the intent look on his face.  He has also started calling me Ms. Frizzle.  I take it as a high compliment.  
-I finally have a rocking chair again.  The day I got it I cried.  Just a little.  I've wanted one so badly since I sold the one I had to make the move.  It was just before Mother's day 2 years ago and I hope the woman who got it rocked her babies in it.  (Her husband was going to surprise her).  Though it was sweet and I'm glad it went to a good home I have longed for one ever since.  My baby is a year and a half and he never had the peace of Mama rocking him before bed.  He loves it. And I love that he loves it.  (I did also try rocking him to sleep at church a few times but he knew that something was up and would NOT settle down to even enjoy it.) Sometimes we just sit and rock for a minute.  
-I also have a scalp condition that makes my scalp and neck so itchy sometimes.  It's like severe dandruff and is mostly under control but flares up now and again.  It's in a flare up stage again right now and makes me want to chop off all my hair (which would help) but I've worked so hard to get it long that I'd hate to give that up.  We'll see which side of me wins out.  

Things you never knew you never knew eh? 

And now for an awesome joke that Sean told me last night:

-What do an Eagle and a Mole have in common?

--They both live underground........except the eagle. 

Thank you and goodnight. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

Love Trumps All

In light of a trying week I'd like to share with you a few things I know that bring hope and comfort in my life.

My sister in law and her husband lost their nephew this week to an accident.  A baby left in a draining tub for a few minutes.  He was 3 months younger than Charlie. My sweet little Charlie.  Their sweet little Kayj (pronounced Cage).  So much hurt. Pain. Longing. Loss. Hope.  Hope to see him again. To hug him again.  To see his smile light up a room.

I know there is life after death. That we go on.  That our spirits commune with others.  That we are not alone.  I have always known this.  It speaks truth deep down to my soul.  And that gives me hope.  Purpose. Direction.  I believe God puts us on Earth to learn a few things.  Mostly love.  And sometimes with that love comes pain.  Sometimes unbelievable pain.  When we are swallowed up in sorrow we are surrounded by love.  Which is odd when you feel so incredibly alone.  Love of perfect strangers who hear your story and connect.  Love of community members who mourn when you mourn.  Love of family who ache with loss.  Love of a Father in Heaven who hears our pleas in a bathroom.  To ease the burden.  To send love and comfort.

I firmly believe that LOVE TRUMPS ALL.  Even in pain and loss and suffering.  As a high school sophomore I remember hearing about all the problems around the world and how simple it seemed that they could all be solved with love.  And yet, I'm not cynical enough to discount that solution yet.  Life is complicated. It's true. And Love? Love is powerful.  

"To love another person is to see the face of God." 
-Les Miserables

Hold those you love a little closer and be quick to forgive.  We never know how much time we have with those we love. We might as well spend the time well.  Spend the time loving each other.  Dishes can wait. Laundry will be there.

Love to you all.

If you're at all interested in sending love to a family who could use it here is a little more info (courtesy of Facebook):

As many of you know, Tye and Laici Shumway lost their little boy Kayj last night in a tragic accident at their home. The Shumway's are fairly new to the Vernal area, having moved from Blanding, but in the short time they've been in our neighborhood, they have been such a blessing and we consider them dear friends. We can't imagine their heartache in letting Kayj return to his Heavenly Father. We feel lucky to have had the opportunity to know Kayj for a short time. He brought so much joy with his sweetness and stunningly handsome little face.

Unfortunately, the loss of Kayj is not the only thing the Shumway's are dealing with right now as Tye was laid off only a few days ago. That's why we have set up a Paypal account to assist the Shumway's with the expenses they are facing. If you would like to donate, please 1) go to, 2) log in (or create an account to log in), 3) click on "Transfer", 4) click on "Send someone money", 5) enter "" as the recipient, with your email as the sender, along with the amount you would like to donate. If you do not have a Paypal account, and do not wish to create one, we would be happy to arrange other means for you to assist.

If you'd like to help but don't want to do the paypal account- send me a comment with your email.  No one sees the comments until I approve them and I'll keep things confidential.

Again, give someone a hug today. Spread love.