Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Yay ME!!!

Just a quick post to let you all know that today is my fifteen year anniversary of being cancer free!!!


It's also the eighteen year anniversary of the day I was diagnosed for the first time when I was 16. Crazy, huh? I had my surgery on Dec. 28th and was diagnose on the 29th. Had a month of tests. And started radiation therapy the day after my 17th birthday. Having kids now, I can't even imagine what my parents went through. How they must have wished they could take my place.

I finished radiation on April 16th. I missed half my junior year. Two years later in May, I was re-diagnosed. This time I was FILLED with cancer! I had it in my lymphnodes, kidneys, lungs, liver, spleen, blood, bone marrow, stomach....Every. Where. My doctor even made a motion that described tumors just floating in my body. Not even attached to anything. (This is where the video blog would come in handy, so I could show you!) I had a 30% chance of survival. I started the 7 months of chemotherapy that would actually make me gain weight. Yes, it took my hair and yes, there were days I felt really crappy but I could literally feel it making me well again. One treatment in, and I knew this was going to work. Many prayers were offered in my behalf. I was given an amazing blessing where my body was commanded to heal. And it did.

On December 29th, just a month before I turned 20 I finished my cancer experience. One of the worst experiences of my life, but probably the BEST experience for my life.

So today I'm grateful for the life I have. The only way my life could be any better is if my dad was still here with me. But all in's pretty good. I know he's on the other side watching out for me.

Happy Anniversary to MEEEEEE!!!!!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Oh, Lookie There! It's A Blog!

Oh hi there! Remember me? I'm the girl who used to blog but then my computer started being weird and then the holidays came and before I knew it, it'd been almost three months since my last post.

Today is Christmas day! It finally got here! And, like every single year, we got too much. This year I have no one to blame but myself. I did every single bit of shopping, wrapping, placing under the tree-ing, etc. Tavis did most of the earning, though.

I got a cute little netbook for Christmas! (DeNae it's just like yours only red.) It has a webcam so this is what my plan is: I'm going to start "vlogging". You see, I'm much funnier in person. In fact, I'm kinda the funniest "in person" person I know. But writing? Not so much. What do you think of this idea? The thing I don't think I'm gonna like about it is that I'll have to put on make-up to do a post. I hope it makes my posts more entertaining. And this way maybe you can see all of Harley's antics in live-action.

Ok, I'm off to visit family. I hope you all had a very happy Christmas. I know I sure did. Still missing my dad, but being with my family fills that hole in my heart.

Thanks for the computer, Tav!

Monday, October 4, 2010

How To Irritate Your Waitress. A List.

  1. Be teenagers.
  2. Be old.
  3. Be...well I better not say this one. It'll just get me in trouble.
  4. Tell me you're ready to order and then proceed to discuss every single thing on the menu with the person or people you're out to dinner with. (I understand people have questions about the menu. If you'd like to discuss the menu with ME, I'm more than willing to do this. I also don't mind coming back when you're REALLY ready to order.)
  5. Tell me you don't want anything to drink. Just water. (Since when is water not something to drink?)
  6. Try to talk to me from your table while I'm talking to another table. (Really, this one shouldn't even have to go on the list'd be surprised.)
  7. We print a menu for a reason. Please don't try to play swippy-swappy with all the side dishes and this's and that's. (Actually, this one doesn't apply to me since I work at Outback. We have a "no rules approach" so we'll totally hook you up with pretty much whatever you want and we really will do it willingly and I can pretty much guarantee you won't pay extra or at least not too much. Yeah, Outback's that cool.)
  8. If you don't want dessert, it's really OK. Really. You don't need to apologize. I mostly ask because they tell me too. Oh and because we have the freaking BEST chocolate sauce on the planet.
  9. When the first thing you order is silverware, that's annoying. You don't even have any food on your table. Settle down. I promise I won't make you eat your steak with your hands.
  10. If you change your mind on what you'd like to eat, that's totally fine. But could you please wait til I've finished talking to the person I'm currently talking to? (Really, didn't we learn this in, like, 8th grade or something?)
  11. If you change your mind again, it really is OK. After all, you want to get your money's worth!
  12. Don't have a conversation with me that starts with "so what if we couldn't pay?"
  13. Sitting in my section that only consists of three tables to begin with for FOUR HOURS will seriously irritate me. I understand you work together and, therefore, don't get to see each other Every. Single. Day. but when you're my first table of my shift and you're still there when I get cut at the end of my shift, that's just rude. At least tip me well to somewhat compensate.
  14. Obviously, I'm gonna have to talk about tipping. This part is more of a survey. How many of you go out to eat with a pretty good idea of how you're gonna tip? Regardless of service. Obviously, really bad service is going to get less of a tip. But I really believe that unless I leave your drinks completely empty all night, you're gonna tip me the same no matter what.
  15. And speaking of tips. Verbal tips don't feed my children. Yes, I LOVE to hear, "you were so great! Thank you so much! You're the best waitress we've ever had!!! Here's your 5% tip!" but I make $2.13 an hour. Which pays my taxes. So...y'know.
  16. Stiffing me is obviously going to irritate me/make me hope you wrap your car around a tree on the way home, causing your airbag to go off and therefore make you puke up your entire dinner. If you can't afford to eat out, go to McDonald's. Or Sizzler.
  17. Please don't try to get free stuff. If your meal really wasn't good, that's one thing. But when you eat everything except one tiny bite and I then tell me it was no good...that's lame.
  18. What's the deal with not wanting ice in your drinks? So many people are doing this lately! Am I missing something???

OK, now it's your turn. Tell me all the ways that I, your server, can irritate you.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Guess What I Found??

The melted phone! I set it in a pan after I took it out of the oven and put cold water in it. I thought I'd thrown it away but when I went to do the dishes, there it was!!

Some of you asked if the potatoes were ruined and the answer is, no. I was only pre-heating the oven so I hadn't put them in yet. Thanks for your concern.

This is the back.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Post That Almost Was

My friend Shanna did a post about her oven rebelling against new and alien foods being placed in it and I commented on that post which then inspired me to make my comment be my own blog post. (Whew! Was that the longest run-on sentence ever, or what??!!)

I wanted to post about Harley and his oven escapades. (Yes, more escapading.) I wanted to tell about how he LOVES to put things in the oven (including himself, at times) (ok, so he mostly just stands on the door but when I say "he puts himself in the oven", it sounds funnier) and how I always have to check inside before I heat it up to make sure there are no treasures in there.

I was going to tell about how last night, I heated up the oven for the funeral potatoes I made to go along with the ribs I (helped) made for Tavis's birthday dinner. (When it's my birthday, we go out. When it's his birthday, I have to cook. Blah.) But I didn't check this time.

I wanted to tell about how we all know the smell of burning plastic is unmistakable and that when I opened the oven door I saw Harley's Lightning McQueen cel phone in there, all bubbled up.

I wanted to tell you all of these things but when I went to take a picture of the phone I realized I must have thrown it away, already.

So never mind.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Random, I Guess?

Today is the one year anniversary of the last time I saw my dad alive. I'm kind of a wreck these days. The one year anniversary of his passing is rapidly approaching and it's gotten me all in a state.

Harley says the funniest things. Seriously, I know I say it a lot, but that kid is so freaking CUTE!!!

Any time we go over a bump in the road or a door slams or whatever he yells, "GEEZ, CAR!!" or "GEEZ DOOR!!!" So the other day we were in church and the deacons were handing the bread trays up to the priests. They clanged together and in the midst of the quiet Sacrament meeting Harley yells, "GEEZ BREAD!!!" A ha ha ha!!

The next Sunday, (last week) the passing of the Sacrament began and he says at full voice level, "EH WATER, COMIN'?" I whisper, "no, baby, it's the bread." Harley, "BREAD COMIN'?" Then after he takes his one piece he says, "I WANT MORE SAMMICH."

Remember when I told you about the old guy we scraped off the street? (Did I mention this guy was freaking ninety-two years old??) Well, a week later Harley and I went to his house to check on him and take him and his wife some cookies. We pulled up to the house and my TWO YEAR OLD says, "eh guy? Owie, eh head?" I know, right?? Just proving once again that he's kind of the coolest kid ever to have graced this earth.

School started and I guess I'm relieved. It's nice to be back on a schedule. After a rough first day for the boys things are looking like it's gonna be a good year. Did I already say the part about Tav's son living with us? He's 16. A junior. I was nervous at first, I won't lie. But it's been a lot better than I thought it would be. He helps a ton with babysitting Harley. And he and Hayden get along pretty good. My girl is left out a bit, so I need to make sure I give her as much of my time as possible.

And good things are happening around here.

That's it, I guess. Peace!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

This One's For You, Karma

(Don't worry. I've fallen behind on the laundry again.)

The other day I was out and about with my kids. I turned right, heading home, and then decided I wanted to go to the Verizon store to talk to them about my keypad wiggin' out. To get to Verizon I had to turn around. I turned down one street, then another, then another. On the third street I thought to myself, "why did I go down this street? I don't want to be on this street."

Just then I saw something that I wasn't sure I was really seeing. It was a man laying in the road. Y'know how sometimes it takes your eyes a couple seconds to decide if you're really seeing what you think you're seeing? Yeah, like that. So I pull over and tell Hayden to come help me. He was confused and I told him there was a man in the street back there! Of course he jumped out, eager to help (and by "help" I mean "get in on the action" but I wanted him to be a part of this).

The wind was blowing a storm in. Hard. It was only 60 degrees outside. The man had been taking his trash out when a gust came up and grabbed the trash can and him and knocked them both to the ground. I helped him sit up and he started scooting to the side of the road. He wanted to get up but I didn't think he should. His head was bleeding and running down his neck. I know enough medical stuff (after all, I did answer the phone in a radiology department for 3 years) to know that heads bleed a lot. If he hadn't been elderly I probably wouldn't have been as worried as I was. Finally his wife came outside and was all "oh no, not again!" We helped him stand up and I called an ambulance. By this time the rain was coming down and the wind continued. We got him to the garage and seated on a chair.

I was still talking to the dispatch lady and she told me she wanted me to stop the bleeding. I had Hayden run to the car to find some napkins but he couldn't find any. I ran over to the car and grabbed a (clean) diaper. Hey, they're absorbent, right? Slapped the diaper on his head and waited.

The paramedics got there and took over. They were so impressed with the diaper!!! YAY ME!! The one dude said that it was the most clever thing he'd ever seen! (I seriously learned that in like 7th grade health class. That and maxi pads.) They decided he was ok enough for his wife to take him to the hospital rather than ride in the ambulance.

I learned a week later when I stopped by to see him that he got 8 stitches and he'd be getting them out the next day.

OK, so here comes the Karma part!!

This past weekend I was on my way to Kohl's to get Harley some church clothes. (Actually, I was going to get him some "shiny pants". The kid LOVES his "shiny shoes". He's been wanting them for weeks because dad has them.) I got all the way to the store, looked around for my wallet and realized I had left it home. DAMMIT!!!

I started driving home when Tavis called me. He asked if I was missing something. I'm like, "yes! Did I leave my wallet home?" He's all, "uh no. You left it on your car and some guy just brought it to the house."

HOLY CRAP!!! I had just worked the night before so I had a bit of cash in there. Not to mention my ID and credit cards. But everything was still there. Untouched.

So thank you, Karma, for not screwing me like you usually do. It's about freakin' time!!!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Update You've All Been Waiting For

Recently my friend Annette Lyon posted on her Facebook that she was going to sort the laundry that was on her great room floor and DeNae was able to point out the post I did about laundry that was "so disturbing, so terrifying, it will torment you in your dreams" and Annette is still probably sleeping with the lights on. So I took matters into my own hands (as opposed to say...someone else's hands) and I got the situation handled!

Remember this?

Well get a LOAD (Get it? LOAD?) of THIS!!!!

Please stop staring at how lame and stupid my laundry "room" is. My house is old, k? The picture is supposed to depict the marked absence of clothes on the floor. It's been almost two years since that post but people, my laundry is DONE. Done, done. Washed, dried, put away. D.O.N.E. Do you know how long it's been since I've had every stitch of laundry done? Stop guessing, you're embarrassing yourself. YEARS. Literally years!!! Even before that picture above was taken. Let's see...I moved into this house four years ago and I think I did pretty good for the first six months. So, ya, since then.

I won't lie, it's a great feeling. I'm sure it's helped that Hayden and Avery have been at their dad's for a couple weeks. But at least it's done! I'm making us all go naked from now on so I never have to do laundry again. (Now we can't stop puking every time we look at each other, though. And when we're not puking, we're pointing and laughing. It's a trade-off.)

Having all my laundry done does have its drawbacks, though:

I don't have any hangers left. Which is just as well since I can't squeeze one more shirt in there, anyway.

The shelf in my closet, where I put my pants and shorts is piled to the ceiling.

Sock drawers are filled to capacity.

This is Hayden's shorts drawer, overflowing.

The towel closet is completely full and I've had to put towels in other places.

So, DeNae and Annette, I hope you can sleep peacefully tonight. Of course, it will require you to get the image of my naked family out of your heads. Sweet dreams!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Story

So the other day I was getting Avery and Harley in the tub together. Avery got in first and I told her to start getting her hair wet so we could wash it.

Being the 9 year-old girl that she is, I figured she freak if Harley peed in the tub like he ALWAYS does the second the little thing touches the warm water. I don't usually worry too much when he pees in his own bath because his pee is still baby pee. Not something you'd want on you but certainly not something to wig out over. But she's NINE. And a GIRL. So I had to do everything I could to make sure tub-peeage (thanks for the work, DeNae!)did not occur.

I had him stand next to the tub while the water ran to encourage him to go in his diaper. Then I took his diaper off and aired the little bugger out in the hopes that the air and the water would inspire him to go outside the tub.

Next, I put him on the potty to try to get him to pee before I put him in. (It should be noted that he has never peed on the potty. Never, ever. But I thought I'd get extra credit from Avery if it looked like I at least tried to make sure he didn't pee in her bath.) After about two minutes of sitting, he said he was done.

After about 3 or 4 minutes I decide that I've done all I could do to prevent him from peeing anywhere near her bathwater. I get him off the pot, turn around to set him in and see my NINE YEAR OLD DAUGHTER sitting in a yellow pool.

"What the hell???" Say I. "Did you pee in the tub?"

Avery literally started to shake her head "no" but quickly realize she was SURROUNDED by evidence and nodded, sheepishly.

Very Under Control Mom: "WHY HAVE YOU PEED IN THE TUB???????"

Mortified Child: Quietly, "I don't know."


VUCM: "Do you always pee in your bath?"

MC: Shakes head, no.

VUCM: "Tell me the truth."

MC: "Sometimes"

VUCM: "Munchkin, you can not pee in the tub! Maybe, under the most dyer of circumstances, when you absolutely can not hold it, you can pee in the shower. But, really, not even then. And NEVER in the bath!!!!!"

So we drained the water, cleaned the tub and the toys, and got them both back in. And they bathed happily ever after.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Cry Me A River. Of Sweat.

So I keep hearing how HOT it is in places like, Las Vegas, for instance. I even heard of a news report in Arizona telling people not to go outside barefoot for even a minute. Not to get the mail or take out the trash or anything because people were getting 2nd degree burns on their feet.

And did you hear last week that in China the cars were melting to the pavement? Yep. It was a new road and the temperature outside was 110 and the temp on the pavement was 140 and the cars were literally getting "stuck in traffic".

And while I don't doubt you're having yourselves a warm snap, I'd just like all you whiners to see how hot it is in Pleasant Grove.

This is the sign in front of Walgreens just down the street from my house. Taken on Sunday.

So next time your temps outside reach 116 degrees, try thinking of those of us who are REALLY suffering!

Friday, July 16, 2010

You Are Not A Bun

Dear Harley,

If I've told you once, I've told you a hundred times: Get. Out. Of. The. Oven.

I realize there are times when you need to reach your cookie.

And cook.

Or just stand there and suck your thumb.

But you've got to find a better place to do these things.

I mean it. Don't even think about it.

One of these days, I'll surprise your daddy and it's actually going to be hot in there!

Love, Mama

Sunday, July 11, 2010

One From The Archives

This is from my archives. One year ago today I was rebaptized. Today has been an emotional day for me. I've missed my dad a lot, since this was his greatest desire for me. To see me back in good standing with the church before he died.

Just minutes after I clicked "publish post", I received the call that my father had passed away. I miss him so much...

I have been so blessed to have been born and raised in the Gospel. What a gift it was to have been sent to parents whose testimonies had already been set in stone. Their faith has always been unfaltering. I went to Primary every Sunday. I was baptized when I was 8. I went to Young Women's every week and I LOVED it. As I look at the youth of today (and even some of my sisters) I realize that the experience I had in the Youth program was quite rare. I lived for activities night. I counted the minutes til girls camp. And cried for a week after it was over. I loved my leaders. I loved my bishoprics. All (and I do mean ALL) of my friends were in my ward and I really, truly liked going to church. I wasn't a rebellious teenager. How could I be? I was diagnosed with cancer a month before I turned 17 and started my first treatment the day after my birthday. I had to be home-schooled for 3 months. I missed out on the dance team that I'd worked so hard to make and I was sick during the try-outs for my senior year. I only saw my friends at church and even then it was different. They didn't know how to act around me. So my parents became my best friends. It was their friendship that got me through that time of my life. And it was during that time that I gained my own set-in-stone testimony. I had a closer relationship with my Father in Heaven during that time than I've ever had. Up to and including now.

Two years after I was declared to be in remission, I relapsed. I was a year out of high school and had a steady boyfriend. We'd moved from my home "town" (more of a city than a town) to a new, literal, town. The odds were very much against my survival this time. This time I was FILLED with cancer. This time I was so incredibly sick. But this time I had my own testimony to draw upon. Don't get me wrong. My parents' faith was still going to get me through but now we were all armed with it. And after an amazing blessing from my former bishop (and another former bishop who died of cancer a year later), I started the 7 months of chemotherapy knowing I'd beat this cancer again.

And I did.

I finished my treatments three years to the day after I was diagnosed the very first time. I was now almost twenty. I'd had cancer twice. (It was Hodgkin's Disease, by the way. I don't think I said that yet.) Looking back, it's almost as if I opened my eyes on the day I was no longer a teenager and really began my life. My boyfriend and I had broken up the day before my birthday. I was cancer free. I was living in a new place. My dad was about to be my bishop. My mom and I were best friends. It was a great time in my life.

I met and married my first husband. We were married in the temple. We had two kids. We were best friends. Life really was good.

So why am I telling you all of this? I want to show just how BLESSED I have been. How much I've been given in my life. I don't think that what happened next can be understood unless you understand all I'd been blessed with. Because seven years after I got married (eight years after I "opened my eyes") I chose to give it all up. I chose to say, "thank you, Heavenly Father, for all You've done for me. For my good health, my beautiful babies, my really nice husband. But I'm going to take a pass for now."

My husband and I split up. I went on a path for the next several months that was in the complete opposite direction as the path I'd been on my whole life. I went from one end of the "spiritual spectrum" to the exact other end.

My actions led me to a disciplinary court. Where it was explained to me that if I were to change my ways, right then; recommit myself to the Lord then I would be able to keep my membership. I know the church doesn't like to excommunicate people. I know the Lord works in ways of love, not punishment. But I made the decision to throw it all away.

I was surprised at how much it really did affect me. At that point in my life I really thought I didn't need the Lord. I didn't need the church. I was "happy". But as I walked home from the church I cried and cried.

I had already felt the absence of the Holy Ghost. I wasn't as patient with my kids as I had once been. I was glad to have them be with their dad because I knew he was a much better parent for them than I was. Things weren't going well at my job. I was angry and hostile to my ex-husband when, really, he hadn't done anything wrong. But having it be official. Having the bishop tell me I was excommunicated just rocked me.

I went on with my life. I continued down that path for a time. But that eventually got old. I was ready to settle down again. I'd already changed my ways with my kids. I was back to being the kind of mom they needed. I had a new and much better job. I still was completely inactive but in my heart I still believed.

I met Tavis and married him 9 months later. He's the love of my life. We got married in May, 2006 and that following Thanksgiving, my dad had a heart attack. He didn't die but it shook me. A month or so after his heart attack he came to me and showed me a piece of paper. It was a list of all of his kids with our birthdates, date of sealing for my oldest sister, and our baptism dates. But next to my name it was blank. Blank. I was a blank line! He told me he wanted, more than anything, for that line to be filled in before he died.

Well, absolutely. Who knew how much time he had left? The chances of another heart attack after a first are really good. So I decided it was time. After several meetings with my bishop we got it figured out that I could be re-baptized. And the only thing it was really going to require of me was that I, y'know, go to church. Everything else in my life was back within the Gospel standards. We decided it would be the same day my 8 year old daughter was baptized. But an hour before hers as not to take anything away from her special day.

Boy did the adversary work on me! Tavis and I fought more than we ever had. I didn't want to go to church. It was so easy to find reasons not to go. But I knew why I was having those feelings. And I did my best to ignore them.

At my disciplinary council the bishopric took a long time to deliberate. Longer than I thought should be necessary, frankly. I knew I was ready. Why were they having such a hard time figuring it out?

My bishop came out of his office and told me he'd forgotten to give me the baptismal interview. (I'm not kidding.) After the interview he was quiet. He finally said, "do you think we're rushing this?"

My heart sank. I couldn't believe he was saying this. I had enough faith, though, to know that if he wasn't getting the confirmation he needed from the Lord then I'd just have to wait.

But I this is what I told him:"The only thing we're rushing is the paper-work. (Because of my wanting to do it the same day as my daughter.) During the last five years my life has gone down every possible road. But my faith, my testimony, has never faltered. I've never stopped believing in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Not one time. I most certainly stopped living it, but I never stopped loving it. My faith is not being rushed. My readiness is not being rushed. All that's being rushed is getting it down on paper."

So he went back in with his counselors and they deliberated again. He called me back in and delivered the most poignant speech I'd ever been given. He said, "Thank you for giving the Spirit time to work. I went from being unsure about your readiness to knowing without question that this is the time for you to be re-baptized. I'm not sure why it's now, but I received revelation that the Lord needs you back now. That NOW is the time for you. I know that in time it will be revealed to us just how important the timing of this is, but for now I just know that it's not by accident that you've chosen now to come back."

Wow. I was speechless.

Which was OK because one of the counselors had this to add, "First, I want to thank you for your courage. It can't have been easy to come and meet with four men you barely know (this was the first time I'd even laid eyes on this man), and put your faith in us. So, thank you. Next, I want to tell you that I've got a general testimony that God loves everyone. But tonight I received a testimony that God loves you. And I'm so thankful to have been in on this council so that I could gain that testimony."

So I was baptized the following Saturday. My dad baptized me when I was 8 and he baptized and confirmed me again. People kept asking if I was so excited??? And the correct answer, of course, was YES!!! But really? No. Because I didn't feel like anything was going to change. All it was was a piece of paper. But as was pointed out to me by a friend, the commitment would be stronger. And she was right. I was wrong to have down-played it so much. I didn't want a big thing. Your first baptism is something to celebrate, not your second. But when the day came, I was truly EXCITED!!! (And not just because my sisters had come from out of town to be there!) I came out of the water feeling a lot like I did on my 20th birthday. My life was really going to begin. Again.

I've got a beautiful baby boy, now. And what I want next is to be sealed to him. But for now, I'll bask in the peace that having the Holy Ghost back in my life has given me. I'll never take that peace for granted again. I'll never let my Heavenly Father down again. My faith is renewed. My commitment is stronger than ever. And my life is right where I want it to be!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A Letter To My Baby

Dear Harley,

When mama puts sunscreen on you, please don't touch me. Ever. I know you're little and this is the first year you've been able to go to the pool so I'll forgive you this once. But from now, on, don't touch mama with your sunscreened hands. K, baby?

Love, Mama

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Yep, It's Official

"Mama! Mama!"

Harley comes in the door with his hand outstretched.


I'm sitting on the couch and I don't see anything in his hand, so I ask him to come show me.

He comes to me, still holding his hand out. And as he gets closer to me I see the "ball".

Sure enough, potato bug.

Proof positive that I have a two year-old BOY!!!!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

And That's Why It Took Me All Day To Do This Post

Today my baby turns TWO!!!!! I just can't believe it. The time goes so fast!

He's been the light and the life of our home these past two years. Before I met Tavis I knew I was done having babies. I didn't want any more. And now I just can't imagine our lives without him.

He's the funniest, nicest, sweetest, CUTEST little boy in the world. He really is just so nice and pleasant. He's just so fun to be around.

He talks so cute. He's so playful. He's funny and pilly and clever. He's a snuggler. He loves to sit on my lap and just chill.

He wakes up in the middle of the night or first thing in the morning or even at night before he goes to sleep and he wants "wottet". Which, literally translated, means "Rocket" from his favorite show, "The Little Einsteins". I swear, he better be a freaking GENIUS when he grows up or I'm suing someone.

He loves tractors and dad's truck and being outside and his little dog, "Futty" (Fluffy). He loves his brothers and sister. He'll eat anything we put in his mouth. He looks at the picture of my dad on our fridge every day and says, "there's papa!".

He gets nervous around strangers so when he warms up to you, it's a real treat. He's very attached to mom and dad. He loves to go "bye bye" and asks to go somewhere every day. He gets that from me. I like to bum around, too. Every single time Tavis puts his shoes on to go somewhere, Harley will take one and put it in the corner by the front door. Then Tav has to ask him to go get it and he does.

He lights up our lives. He makes each day worth getting up for. He makes my big burly husband talk like a baby. He snaps me out of a depression. He truly is a gift from heaven. I can't believe I'm the lucky one who gets to be his mom!

Happy Birthday, Harley! You are one of the most loved kids in the world!

This is Harley on Mother's Day
Harley and Tavis on the "hoe" spoken of in the previous post
Harley and "Papa" at his first birthday
The day he was born...
Six days before he came to our family...

Monday, April 12, 2010

Actual Phone Conversation

Tavis: "Hello!"

Me: "Hi, babe! How's your day going?"

Tavis: "Pretty good. Just runnin' the equipment today." (Which explains his good mood. He loves to be in the equipment. Boys and their tractors!)

Me: "Well I just called to tell you I love you." (I'm nice like that.)

Tavis: "Aw, thanks! Love you, too!"

Me: "When do you think you'll be home?"

Tav: "I'm not sure. I'll call you when I get off this hoe."

Me: Long pause "Wow. Any other wife might be a little concerned about that statement."

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

In Which I Take Back All the Nice Things I Said About Old People

So I'm in line at the post office the other day. I was probably six people back and the line continued to form behind me. Along one part of the wall was a rack of greeting cards. As Harley and I waited in line he took interest in the cards. Of course. He'd pick out a card, look at it and place it back exactly where it didn't belong. So I'd take the card and put it back it its spot. This had happened a good ten times. It wasn't hard. He'd take a card, I'd put it back. No biggie. He wasn't being bad. He was entertained and staying close to me so I was fine with this "game".

Then an old man and his grown daughter got in line about three people behind us. He asks the gal behind me, "is that your little boy?"

I tell him he's my little boy and, naturally, prepare myself to hear what everyone says, "oh he is so CUTE!!! Look at his darling blond hair!! Oh, those blue eyes!!! His smile!!! What a doll!!!"


To my surprise the old man says, "well he's playing with all the cards! If that was my child I wouldn't let him play with that. Oh, now he's moving them. NO! NO! That's not where that one goes!! HEY!! Hey, you can't put that there!" His daughter tried to politely shush him. He tells her, "I'm just being mock-serious".

Mock-serious??? Who says that? Old Man River, that's who.

I keep giving him my best "stop talking to my child like that" smile. I don't get offended easily. I know old people have lost their filters. And their ability to control the VOLUME OF THEIR VOICE. His daughter was clearly embarrassed by her father. She had the look of "please don't get mad, he's an old geezer" on her face. But the only reason I'm mad now is because I continued to replace the cards but he doesn't know I've been doing this all along. He thinks I'm doing it now because he made a fuss about it.

By now I've moved far enough up in the line that Harley's too far away from me for my comfort. So I gather him up and set him on the counter. He tried to grab all the "change of address" forms and I told him he'd send that old man into a tailspin if I let him play with those.

So we mailed DeNae's 25th wedding anniversary gift and were on our way. It got me thinking, though. Will I be a sweet old lady or an ornery old bag? I haven't decided yet.

Today is the last day to donate your Snuggie to Kristina's oldies. But don't give one to that old man. OK, give him one but make sure it's a PINK one.

Monday, March 15, 2010

It WaS HITting Everything BUT The Fan!!!

Alright, people. This post is going to contain a lot of TMI. Seriously. A. Lot.

I LOVE TMI!!! Love it, I tell ya! I live for it! I love everything from child-birth to periods to bowel movements to **sex** (not tons of details, just generalities) to toenail fungus, I love it all. And I want to hear it all. And, my friends, I tend to share it all.

Last Tuesday I got up and had my morning movement. Typically my #2 is round and pebbley (which I learned later wasn't the way it's supposed to be. But it's always been that way so I'm not going to worry about it.) and I'm able to (if need be) give a courtesy flush. This time, however, it came out in one long piece. Not allowing for the courtesy flush. Then, like I always do, I used too much TP. Tavis gets so frustrated with me because I use a ton of toity. But I can't risk having a finger break through!!! Hayden and I use waaaaay too much. Avery, on the other hand, uses like half a square which is just gross.

So I flush. And the toilet makes that sound that we all know. The sure sound that it's not going down. It fills up. Then slowly drains down., however did go down. So what I'm left with is a wad of T.P. at the bottom of the toilet with no water in it. You got the visual? A few minutes go by and I flush again. Again with the filling of the toilet.


Again it drains slowly down while I go get the plunger. Flush again and plunge like crazy. The toilet fills up and this time it overflows! But during these couple of seconds of overflowing I think to myself, "well this sucks, but once the toilet stops filling it'll stop overflowing".

But guess what? This time the toilet doesn't stop filling. Y'know how your toilet will sometimes continue to run and you have to jiggle the handle? Well, that's fine as long as your toilet isn't clogged because it'll just drain as it fills. Yeaaaaahhh...not so much when there's in the pipes.

So the water keeps coming. I keep plunging. Water is filling my little half-bath.


The water flows out of the bathroom, into the hall and into the kitchen which is right next to the bathroom. It covered half the kitchen floor. (Trust me, the thought of sh*t water on my kitchen floor is nauseating.) I tried to turn off the water to the toilet but it wouldn't turn! Luckily just one week prior Tavis showed me where the main shut off valve to our water was. (Conveniently located inside the heat vent next to the front door.) So I run and turn it off.

Ran downstairs to the laundry room to grab some dirty towels to sop up the water and Oh. My. Gosh. It's running in to my basement!!! We have a 6 ft crawl space under my house and the toilet water was running in to it.


Now I'm just at a loss as what the *h* to do! So I call Tav. Every husband wants to get a phone call from his frantic wife saying there's crap water all over the house. Luckily he was almost home. People, there was so much water on the floor that the towels wouldn't even touch it. Wouldn't even scratch the surface. I put three down on the bathroom floor and there was still literally 2 inches of water on the floor. Not to mention the totally soggy hall carpet and the half-inch of water on the kitchen floor.

So Tav gets home and we survey the scene. I've thrown away my hat that was on the floor. There's a bag of toilet paper in the garbage because it's soaked. Ironically, the toilet bowl cleaner pad thingies were floating around the toilet. And I've got an empty storage bin with the soaked towels in it.

"Where's the shop-vac?" I say to him.

"It's not meant to suck up THIS much water."


So we got our carpet cleaner and started sucking up the water. It worked great! And came in very handy when it came time to clean the poop water out of the carpet in the hall. Although, let's be honest. Every time we walk past there, we're gonna remember. I find myself skirting around the area all the time. Even though he did a good job of steam cleaning it.

After all (most) the water was sucked up I Pine Sol-ed the hell outa that bathroom! And the kitchen! Did I mention my darling niece was on her way? Ya. Just as the mayhem was winding down, Vanessa got to my house. I went running out to greet her....."VANESSSSSSAAAAA!!!!!!! WE'RE HAVING A CRISIS!!!!!"

She called her mom to tell her she'd made it safely and started telling her what had happened. The story really could only be told first hand so I got on the phone with DeNae and told her all about it. First we laughed at how completely insane the story was and then at what our lives have become. Every crisis or trauma is....what? A BLOG POST!!!!! You know the whole time I was trying to shut off the toilet I was thinking, "I should grab a picture of this so I can blog about it". But I also thought, "pretty sure Tavis wouldn't see the great blog potential this story has and would probably be all...'get the poop water off the floor'". He's such a fun hater!!!

I have two other number 2 stories but this one is really long so I'll summarize: The next day I was changing a number 2 diaper of Harley's and took his pants off only to find number 2 all down his leg! Of course I'm not expecting to have number 2 outside the diaper so I'm not being careful and it get all over me! My leg, my hand, etc. I called Tav inside from the garage to help me with that one.

The day after that, Hayden and Harley were in the bath together (My older kids literally fight over who gets to bathe with Harley. He's just so dang CUTE in there!) and I was on the phone (a rare occasion as I really don't like to use my phone voice). Hayden starts screaming "MAMA!!!!! HARLEY POOPED IN THE TUB!!!!!"

Yep, he sure did. A lot.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Snuggly Buggly (my mom says that)

It seems the topic of old people has been on my mind a lot this week. On Wednesday my maternal grandpa would have turned 100 years old. He died at 88 1/2, so he lived a very long life. My grandma is still alive and kicking (butt) at the age of 96. Yes, she's a little slower and a lot deafer and requires constant care (which requires my mom to go tend her every other weekend) but she's sharp as a tack up there (taps side of head). She can tell you the names of all her grand kids, great-grand kids and great-great grand kids. (Yes, that's FIVE generations!!) She can tell you most of their birthdays or at least the general time they were born.

This is my grandma at my dad's funeral. No, she doesn't have a black eye. That thing's been there for as long as I can remember. I don't know what it is. DeNae, do you?

And on that same Wednesday I ate breakfast with my very good friend Kristina P. Who is doing something really, really great. She's doing a "Snuggies for Seniors" drive. If you don't know Kristina then A: you're really missing out on one of the funniest people ALIVE and B: she's kind of obsessed with the Snuggie. And by "kind of" I mean it consumes her every living, breathing thought.

Oh my heck, I did it!!! I "grabbed the button" and I put it on here! I've never done it before! YAYAYAYAYAYAY meeee!!! I don't know how to get rid of that line next to it, though. Baby steps.

So please, click on those cute little old people and do your part to keep these geezers warm! I know I will be!

After all, if we didn't have old people who else would give me a 10% tip???

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Post About Nothing

Not much to report here. I'm such a lame blogger these days. Why? I don't know!! I've noticed that ever since my dad died, I'm not not into it anymore. But I really wouldn't say the two are connected. I need to get better at it though, because I like the idea of keeping up with what's going on in my life. Like being hip-deep in toddlerdom.

c[//n;; bbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbkj['

See??? That was Harley. Maybe that's why I'm a lame blogger. Because he's up in my grill all the time. But I honestly wouldn't have it any other way. He's been such joy. He really is my joy. Do you know that just a few days before my dad died he sent me a text in reference to this post that said, "I love you so much. You are my joy"? I can't begin to tell you how much I wish I had saved that text. And Harley really, truly is my joy these days.

So Harley talks a TON lately. Oh my heck it's the cutest thing EVER!!! His latest word is "Ma'er". It's Mater, from Cars but without the T. He loves Mater. I went on a Mater quest this past Monday. Couldn't find him in all the usual places...Wal Mart, Toys R Us. So we went to the mall and found him at the Disney store. Ohhhh, did we find him!

Did I mention that I should have been shopping for Hayden's birthday during my Mater quest? Well I should have been. Actually, I did shop for Hayden. I can't believe my (oldest) baby is ELEVEN!! Here's a fun little bit for you: My sister, DeNae was 11 when I was born. I was 11 when her son, David was born. David was 11 when Hayden was born and now Hayden's 11. Crazy, right?

This post is all over the place. I apologize. I got nothin' though.

I love my job. How many waitresses can say that? I really do, though! Last night I waited on a man who was eating alone. He was a soft spoken man. Very nice. His bill was $28. He gave me two twenties and asked that I just bring him $5 back. So I did. When I gave him his change, he told me he'd like to pick up the bill of the table next to him. Who does that??? Very nice people, that's who. Their bill was only $20. (They shared a steak.) He gave me $25 and told me to keep the rest. When he left, I was cleaning up and found the $5 change I'd given him still in the black book. Nice, right? See? I love my job.

Am I the only one who's ready for winter to be over? I feel like such a whiner because we really haven't had a harsh winter. I just want it to be WARM!!! And yet, I'm stressed about summer coming because it means no more bulky hoodies to cover my muffin top. And I have to shave my legs every day. I guess it's all about trade offs, right?

I had a great birthday. Probably the best ever. It seems like I say that every year. That's a good thing, I think.

I'm excited for this. I haven't bought my ticket yet but I'm for sure going. I can't wait! I want to have a big slumber party that Friday night. Braid each other's hair. Paint finger nails. Strip down to bra and panties and have a tickle fight. Freeze the bra of the first girl that falls asleep. Y'know, do it up right!

OK, that's it. I'll stop. Have a great weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Prayers, Please

OK, so I know I didn't post anything in the previous post and instead of deleting it I thought I'd let you all see how freakin' funny and bratty Kristina is.

I was doing it from my phone while I sat on the toilet next to the tub as Harley bathed. It didn't work. Obviously.

So last week a girl I work with was telling us about a friend of hers who'd been giving her two young sons a bath and left them alone in the tub. One was two, the other 16 months. The baby drowned. His older brother (6) ran down the hall to find his mom and tell her the baby wasn't breathing. She started CPR, big brother called 911 and his dad who had just left for a bike ride. The paramedics arrived and took him away. He arrived 11 minutes after the 911 call at the hospital, DOA. Moments later they flew him to PCMC. Where they revived and stabilized him. He was still unconscious. His heart was beating on its own but he wasn't breathing on his own.

I only know all these details because I saw on Facebook that a girl I went to high school with was saying that her friend's baby was so resilient. She put a link to her friend's blog and I began reading. And bawling. My baby is only a few months older than this baby. I read and read and bawled. I read about the whole thing. My heart went out to this poor mother. What guilt she must be feeling! She mentioned in one of her posts that it was the first post she'd done since this little guy was born. Kind of ironic. So I read that post. I saw the pictures of that new little baby. And his mom. And I know her! I went to high school with her too! I couldn't believe I'd read this whole story. Heard about it for a week at work. And all the while, I know her! We roomed together in San Diego on our concert choir tour.

Anyway, the point of this post is not to depress you. It's to ask for your prayers on behalf of this little baby and his family. Once again I'm amazed at the way this blogging world works. On the first post this girl did there were 20-something comments. On her latest post (not even 2 weeks later) there were 500-something comments. That's incredible to me! Anyway, please go read her story. Or at the very least, offer up a prayer for her family today.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Let The Celebrating Begin

So my birthday is coming up. It's on Monday. I love, love, love my birthday! This is the first year I've actually not looked forward to the aging part, though. But oh well. What ya gonna do, right? So I've always felt that since my birthday is the first day of the shortest month I really should be allowed to start celebrating in January and go all through the month of February. Tonight kicked off my month-long celebration!

Vanessa (whose adorable baby girl turns 3 on Monday, too) insisted we get together for my birthday (thanks, girlie!) and who am I to disappoint a friend? So we got together at Goodwood. The place where I met 6 out of 8 of these awesome, awesome women. I met them almost a year ago at Kristina P.'s blog lunch. I can't believe what a strong bond and friendship has grown from that day. Blogging has brought to me friendships that I never thought possible. If I never blog another word it will be ok because I truly feel like I've gotten out of blogging what I wanted. Although, when I started blogging I didn't know I wanted this. Anyway, I just really, really want to tell you girls how much you mean to me. I'm so blessed to call you "friend". Thank you so much for making my birthday so special. I am the luckiest girl in the world. I feel bad, though, that I'm in a fight with all of you because I told you, "no gifts or we're in a fight". And every last, stinkin', darling one of you brought me a gift. NAUGHTIES!!!!!

OK, we're made up. Let's never fight again. Until my birthday next year.

It's times like tonight that I really miss my sister, DeNae. She's my bestest blogging buddy. My biggest cheerleader. And seriously in the top three funniest people I know (numbers 1 and 2 being me and, well, me). I wish she lived closer so she could join me at all my bloggy outings. If you don't read her Backordered Life, you're totally missing out. Love you, sister!

So here we are: going from front left, clockwise around the table: Veronica, Melissa, Me, Sherrie, (half of) Kristina, Motherboard, Annie, Tiberon, Vanessa. I apologize for the devil eyes! I really did do the "red eye fix". My computer must know things about some of you that I don't....HA!

Again, thanks so much for making me feel so special and so loved. And I hope that you all know just how loved and special you are to me.

That's what I'm celebrating this year. Not that I'm turning 34. But that I have such great, great friends.

Friday, January 8, 2010


Avery comes home from dance last night and we all eat dinner.
She asks if we wanna see her dance. Tavis says, no. (Kidding)
She falls apart (I jump Tav. Tell him that wasn't funny. He apologizes, saying he was kidding.) and goes downstairs.
Harley follows her.
He climbs up on the computer desk and gets stuck.
Avery runs upstairs and tell us he's stuck.
We tell her to get him down.
She says, "he's down. Here he comes."
He comes in the room holding two pens and a pencil.
Tav tells her to get them from him.
She starts toward him and of course he runs.
She tackles him.
Hayden jumps in to "help."
Harley hits his head on Hayden's knee. Freaks.
Avery takes the pens from him. More freaking.
I console Harley.
Avery goes into the kitchen and comes back in with a Ring Pop.
Asks if she can have it.
Tavis says, no. (Thought she'd already had one.)
She freaks again.
Runs into the kitchen, slips and falls rounding the corner.
REALLY freaks.
I accidentally let Hayden see me laughing at Avery's demise.
He starts laughing.
Avery takes it well.
She goes in the bathroom and says she hates her life. Wants to "go to bed, get a new life and hope she dies in her sleep." (I know, right?)
I console Avery.
Still holding Harley.
Her outburst has caused him to cry even more.
I tell Hayden he might as well get in here and bawl, too.
He does. (Pretend)
I tell Avery to get her dance CD and go with me to my room to show me her dance.
She and I and Harley go up there.
She flops on my bed, flailing. Says, "I'm too upset to dance."
I tell her I can't listen to her bawling anymore so she should go to bed.
Harley and I go back downstairs.
Avery screams, "I DON'T WANT TO GO TO BED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Harley and I and Tavis watch TV for a few.
Avery yells down asking if she can come out.
I tell her only if she's done freaking.
She is.
She comes down and sits by me.
I tell her to grab her spelling words and we'll go over them.
She freaks.
"I CAN'T DO SPELLING IN THE LIVING ROOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
I tell her she has two choices: do spelling or go to bed.
More freaking.
I tell her if she keeps it up she'll only have one choice. Bed.
She gets her spelling.
Spells all the words correctly.
Harley has stopped bawling.
Hayden's watching TV.
She's done freaking.
It's 8:00 PM.
Tavis needs a glass of wine.