Saturday, June 26, 2010

Ah....the sweet life

So, Nate and I have been married 17 years to the day today! Things are going great. I don't know how we got to suddenly be SO lucky. The beginning of this month was SO stressful and today we're feeling so blessed. We LOVE our new place. Our neighbors on one side said we can pick all the avocados (they're Haas, by the way), blood oranges and lemons we want. On the other side we took a peace offering of choc chip cookies for all the fruit the girls have been stealing and they said we're welcome to come pick anytime!!! All their trees drape over our fenceline....Grapefruit, plums, apples, oranges, and the sweetest apricots I've EVER tasted! Mmmmmm.....You know what kind of freaky foodies we are so we are lovin' life.

Oh, and did I mention it is QUIET here? Who knew I could sleep ALL night...Yes, ALL NIGHT! I had no idea how much a quiet neighborhood would mean. Thank you, God, for all we went through to be here today. I LOVE it here!!!!!

Now let's see if those 15 lbs come back now that I'm happy :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

How to lose 15 lbs in 2 weeks! It really works!!!

OK, so you may not want to try this, but it really worked for me.....

First, you want to have your landlord send you an email telling you he'd like to raise your rent $700 per month. Then you frantically look for another place to live while knocking on everyone's doors in the neighborhood to ask if they are renters and if so if they would divulge how much they are paying. Argue with your landlord (actually my good friend did most of the negotiating for us--but we did have to do the grunt work)

Second, find out you actually qualify to buy a house and start trying to find one. Make an offer--a LOW offer--have them refuse your offer, then accept.

Third, stop sleeping because you're so stressed out.

Fourth, ask your landlord if you can rent month to month until you can buy a home and have him say "no" because he believes in only renting in the summertime for one year periods at a time.

Fifth, spend a lot of money on a home inspection, mold inspection, and I can't remember the other inspection we paid for, but we did!

Sixth, find out you have to move in 2 1/2 weeks because your landlord won't let you stay even 6 more weeks past your lease date expiring. SO in between everything else you're trying to do with 4 kids you have to add packing up the entire house to the mix--and find a place to stay until you can move into the new house. You'll have to put your stuff in storage and move twice.

Seventh, find out there's lots of mold in your proposed new (OLD) house. 300,000th's range in 4 rooms--and sellers are unwilling to clean it up properly because you made a low offer. Cancel offer then...

Last, but not least, you find a new rental and sign all the paperwork to move in in 2 weeks.

Haven't finished the last step yet. I know, I know, there are a lot of steps, but it really worked for me! Boy, somewhere deep down I must like a lot of DRAMA in my life! Yep.

Oh, and did I mention I was planning on auditioning for the San Diego opera in June?--I had to give up that goal midway through this whole fiasco--no time to practice! I did manage to get up my own website for voice amidst this crisis, though :)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The perfect day

The perfect end to a perfect day. Everyone woke up early to find their easter baskets. After the hunt we ate belgian waffles with fresh strawberries and whip cream. Then we watched conference, practically uninterrupted as the girls ran inside and outside of the house--playing with their new house made from my new dryer box and getting ready for an easter egg hunt outback. After the first session we ate lunch and had 4 egg hunts in the back yard. For the second session I painted all the girls nails and they helped me laminate some things for Joy School.

After conference I took the girls swimming while Nate and Jake went on a practice run with 40 lbs packs for Jake's scout Havasupai trip next week. After dinner we snuggled and watched a movie before putting the girls to bed.

I LOVE conference weekend. I was touched deeply and was inspired by so many of the talks. It buoys me up and helps me feel like I can face anything. With the Lord NOTHING is impossible. I love the gospel of Jesus Christ and am so THANKFUL for conference weekend! I wish we could do it 4 times a year instead of two. I love getting to sit in my own home to watch it and not have to worry the entire time about keeping my kids quiet. They can do whatever they want by me and play all over the house or outside and they are happy as long as we are all together. The internet broadcast was amazing, too, on our giant plasma TV. We had no interruptions and it looked just like it would have on cable.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Emmy's dress is DONE!!! It took a month and Aunt Janet's, Cheri's, my Mom's, and Mary Sutton's help. In fact, I'm not really sure what I contributed to the making of the dress--OK, maybe buying the supplies. Can someone remind me to NOT attempt something like this again unless I've had some sewing classes first. This took WAY TOO MANY hours to complete. But it is done and I feel like the Allelujah chorus from Handel's Messiah is playing in the background.

Emmy was so excited when she woke up this morning and got to try it on. It's not perfect, but I think it turned out beautifully.

I'm SO glad it's done and over :)

Sunday, March 7, 2010


I've started taking a parenting class titled, "redirecting children's behavior" and I LOVE it! You see, THIS is what I've always wanted. What I didn't learn in college and why I always feel like I have NO clue whatsoever at being a Mom. People always shush me if I say that--but it's true. I know everything about singing a role on stage or developing a character or how to choreograph a show, etc....But never learned how to raise children. It's all by trial and error so far. I am learning so much and getting wonderful gems to use at home. I have also learned that Nate and I are doing a few things right. Woohoo!

Emmy and I were in a disagreement about something and Jake uttered, "this isn't a democracy Emmy it's a Matriarchy". I said, "What? That isn't true I don't rule the roost" He said, "it's not like I said it was a dictatorship. It is a Matriarchy." OK, so I'm going to have to work on that a little and let my kids make more decisions on their own.

Aunt Emily comes this week! Yeah! Goals: take down the Christmas tree upstairs before she gets here. Yes. I said the Christmas tree.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

San Francisco

Nate and I went away for the weekend. The first in three years--that I can recall anyway. And, no I don't count when we had to go house-hunting last spring. That is NEVER a vacation. Anyway,... We had a wonderful time!!!! We met up Friday afternoon with my friend Juliet and husband, Pat for her 40th birthday dinner. We had a lovely time visiting with them and touring a bit of the city. We ate at the greatest places...mmm....went to the King tut exhibit on Saturday, waited in line to get Wicked tickets for $25 bucks (Danae your crumpling of the ticket theory failed me!)--we still got in, though. They gave all of us that waited discounted tickets (although, not for $25). The theatre had a ton of empty seats. Sunday we stopped in to hear a lively methodist choir singing Jesus' praises complete with live band and HUGE choir, walked around golden gate park (even though it's winter it was still beautiful!), raced back to our hotel, checked out and flew back home.
Oh, and I almost forgot--we got to see a guy peeing on the sidewalk...some woman yell at me "get away from me you f.... b...!" while standing at a bus stop not 5 feet from me...Oh, and one guy, high as a kite, broke into a conversation with Nate and proceeded to follow us for 15 minutes until we finally had to walk back to our hotel to shake him off. Pat and Juliet shared with us the cardinal rule up there, "Do NOT engage! Do NOT engage!" Woops! Didn't know that one. Ah... SF!

The kids were so excited to see us--as we were them. Three days is the perfect get away. I miss them too much after that.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Weirdest day ever in So Cal

Emily decided she wanted us to all go to the beach. When we got up I noticed it was raining--doesn't usually do that here. I called her up and said are you sure you want to go to the beach? Yep! So we left. They're plane was leaving out of Long Beach so we decided to make the trek up there so they wouldn't have to travel so far on vacation (it's about an hour away). When we got up to Long Beach the wind picked up the second we got to the bay and then it started to rain. Sheets and sheets of rain. Vivian wanted to go to the car. We stood there for a while all huddled under a blanket while Molly and Abby played in the sand and at the waters edge. Eventually, Abby came over to us with blue shaking lips and said, "Mom can we go?" We packed it all up and headed to "Open Sesame". A Delightful mediteranean place.

After lunch it seemed we were in a monsoon. The trees were all leaning sideways in the wind and it was cold and rainy. Emily wanted to go to the mall so she could go to a store called H & M. We were hoping the kids could find a playplace as most malls have-- to play together before Molly and Ethan had to fly back home. Nope! All they had was a costly carousel. Jake went in the bathroom and came out and said "Dad, look at the water on the floor".....then, it started gushing out of the bathroom door. The entire lower level at South Coast plaza (a HUGE mall) was starting to flood. All the lower level stores were beginning to close. Nate and Pete were advised to go get their cars out of the parking garage as it was also flooding and leaking. We all stepped outside and cars in the parking lot had water almost up to their door handles. It was crazy. When we drove on the freeway every now and again a brilliant driver would go whizzing by us-- dousing us with a wall of water so that you couldn't see a thing for a few seconds. After the mall we decided it best to part ways and go home. I don't think I can recall a day like this EVER in sunny southern california, but I guess they do happen occasionally!

The rain reminded me of storms in North Carolina--hurricane weather really. I still remember vividly trying to escape a hurricane and driving in it the entire 7 hour drive to stay with MJ when Jake was just three and Emmy a newborn. We got so drenched every time we stopped the car and had to get out.

Glad to be home safe and sound in my warm and cozy bed :)

Friday, January 8, 2010

While I was sleeping...

Today was a horrible, no good, very bad day! I decided to sleep in (always a mistake in my house) and it just happened to be the one and only morning Vivian pooped in her diaper upon waking up and tried to clean it up herself. Yes, she's potty trained, but wears a diaper at night and NEVER poops in it, except this morning. There was poop all over my beautiful blue throw rug in a trail to the diaper box from the bathroom, in the sink, on the counter, etc. Nice :) If you want to put me in the best of moods for the day make me clean up poop first thing. You know this was why I would never go into the medical profession--gross things are GROSS and I don't like having any part of them.

Then I let the girls wear two darling, matching "baby lulu" outfits I had just bought the day before. Abby ripped hers within the hour and Vivian managed to sneak out of her bed at nap time and find the green silly putty. It is now embedded in the fabric. ANYONE know HOW to get silly putty out of mesh fabric? Oh, and did I mention she pee'd on the carpet as well this afternoon? As I was sopping up the pee with a rag and cursing under my breath I thought, "This is it! I am done! I don't want to do this anymore! When will the pee and poop EVER END?!!!!" I didn't send out any Christmas messages this year because THIS is my life-- day in and day out--doesn't make for very sweet tidings.

After dinner, we all watched Evan Almighty--pretty funny, by the way. Afterwards, Viv and Abby wanted to dance to the music. The credits ended with a slow song and Viv squeezed me tight with her head resting on my shoulder while Abby held on at my hip as we danced together and suddenly all was right with the world again. What a roller coaster motherhood is! Or...maybe it's just me.