Sunday, December 30, 2007

Mama Shhh

Mama Shhh is apparently my new name. I've noticed lately that Gus does this Shhh thing to me all the time. And then today Les informed me that almost every morning when he wakes up he says to Les "mama, shhhh" putting one finger up to his lips. Although I understand why he does this, considering my new at-home job, I am still a little bit distraught by my son's perception of me. All of a sudden I'm the mom that you have to tiptoe around. I have this vision in my mind of the mom in the movies that is drunk on the couch with her tongue hanging out of her mouth and drool oozing down her cheek, still wearing her kitchen apron, and the kids all slink by her on their tiptoes, shooshing their friends so she doesn't wake up and start throwing things.

It probably doesn't help that in addition to the new job in the morning where Gus and Dad have to be quiet I also have started taking naps a lot more often during the day as a direct result of the new job. I wonder how he will be affected by this new idea of his mom being a Shhh mama. Maybe 10 or 20 years from now he'll either be the laziest boy ever and want to sleep all the time or maybe he'll resent the fact that I took too many naps and he'll be disgruntled with all laziness.

Any thoughts?

Saturday, December 22, 2007


A few days ago Les and I were in a Walmart doing a little impulse shopping when a man walked in holding a 4 or so year-old boy who was having a screaming fit. At first we weren't sure if the man was the little boy's father because of the way he was choosing to react to this tantrum (we should have know better). As they walked in the man said to the little boy in a very panicked, frantic, and obviously frustrated tone,"what do you want? a cookie, there are donuts right here, do you want a donut, I'll give you a donut. I have one right here. Oh, ice cream? Okay, what ice cream would you like? Pick whichever one you want. Whatever you want. " This is basically just a replay from my mind of what actually happened, but it's pretty close to the real thing. Les and I stood there staring (and Les usually doesn't stare). Watching this encounter scared us both immensely and neither one could turn away. We didn't speak it to each other but I know we were both picturing us doing that exact same thing in 3 years from now - and the thought of that freaked us out.

We do currently have a little problem with the 'giving Gus anything he wants to keep him quiet' thing. It is one of the main things we need to work on as far as our parenting skills go. A one year old (and younger even) can absolutely throw a pre-meditated tantrum. They are so much smarter than we give them credit for. Les and I, from the the very beginning, have joked that Gus has us on "parentwise" (a play on the "Dr. Spock" of our time - "Babywise"). He has us at his every grunt and call and he knows exactly how to get what he wants.

At the very moment, after watching this parenting train wreck in the Walmart, Les and I made a vow to one another that we would not be that parent. We would not let this manipulation run it's course to such extremes. We even shook hands to seal the deal.

So, um, now any suggestions on how to parent?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Like father like son

I love this picture of my boys because they look so much alike here. Look at the lips, the eyebrows, the whispy morning hair. And of course the big blue eyes.

Monday, December 17, 2007

My Birthday/ Making me Happy

10. Yesterday was my 27th Birthday. I am excited about being 27. I think it will be a good year.

9. We had an amazing visit with our friends Colby, Amy, and Steven this week. They brought yellow curry from Tai Siam. We played tripoli and laughed our guts out. And then they put on a concert for us right in our living room. It was so beautiful with the Christmas lights behind them and the mixture of sounds. I felt like I was in a different world. (Surprisingly the guitar, harmonica, cello, and accordian really blend well together - at least when you are as talented as they all are.)

8. On Saturday I found a rug on craigslist and so I drove out to Herriman (beautiful mountain neighborhood way out west) to have a look at it. It turned out that the home had been in the Parade of Homes and they were now selling all the furniture. I about hyperventilated with excitement as I walked through this gorgeous house. I did buy the rug and I also bought this white bowl. It was $10 - how could I resist. This was my birthday present to myself.
7. Thank you to all the kind people who have sittered Gus the last few weeks. We've had a lot going on and we've really taken advantage of our sitters. My favorite part is to hear what Gus did while we were gone. Last night Brigita said that he sang them a song. He made muffins with Hannah. And my mom always brags about his long attention span - especially when it comes to cooking.

6. I finally found some things to give Les for Christmas! I hope you like them honey.

5. It is so nice to have a tree up this year. We weren't able to use any of our Christmas decor last year because we were in the process of remodeling the house.

4. Les and I have been watching all kinds of Christmas and psuedo Christmas movies (the ones that just take place at Christmas time). Les and I are constantly quoting lines from this, one of our favorite movies, "Millions". It came out in 2004. The first time you watch it use the closed caption - that way the wittiness won't get lost in their thick accents. There is even a mormon missionary camio in this flick.

3. This week is going to be so fun and a little crazy. We have a party every night this week. And we are also eating dinner out every
night this week...scary. I could so easily gain 10 pounds.

2. Les gave me this set of 'tried and true' cookbooks for my birthday. I've wanted these forever. Thanks honey! Lots of good cooking to come.

1. I received lots of cards and gifts from friends and family yesterday. I felt very loved. This cards was from my mom. She's funny.

Friday, December 14, 2007

My First Snowman

I had no idea when I got married that I had married a snowman-making expert. Seriously Les had this thing made in about 6 minutes. Les was shocked when I told him I'd never made a snowman before. Yes, I did grow up in Salt Lake City. It seems to me that we tried making snowmen all the time growing up. I think we even tried making a snowfort a couple times. But, the snow was never quite packable enough and our packing and rolling never amounted to much.

Now, I realize that this my first snowman is quite ugly. We couldn't find the traditional peices of coal for the eyes and mouth so we scavenged for other things. The best we came up with was this candy cane mustache. Gus was actually not very interested in the snowman until we added candy to it.

While Les was in the house looking for eyes, nose, and mouth he locked us out of our house accidently - on his way out the door. So, all 3 of us were stuck out in the cold for an hour or so while Les looked for a way to break in and then my mom was able to come and bring a spare key (we did go the our neighbor's house while we waited)

When we returned home we found our poor snowman had tipped over. It was a very interesting day. We'll probably have to attempt this same project again next time it snows so we can get everything right.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Making me Happy

I love reading Ali's "Making me Happy" 10 item list each week. So, I am going to copy her idea (I think she actually got the idea from Domino magazine - so I don't think she'll mind). Here are a few things that I am giddy about this week.

10. My invention of the Chili's carribbean salad for dinner last night- a pretty close duplication if I do say so myself. It's my mom's favorite. Yum.

9. I am loving working from home. My job has worked out so well.

8. Opening the mail today and finding a wedding announcement for my cousin Nathan Simmons (Heather's brother) - whom I didn't even know was getting married. And even better - his fiance looks gorgeous and sweet - exactly what he deserves. The mail also brought my new Domino! Yahoo.

7. My new IKEA dishtowels with gorgeous Christmas patterns - and oh so cheap too! I went to return an item and vowed to Les that I wouldn't buy anything. And then I spotted the towels. I really had to bribe him on that one.

6. Gus's recent ability to say "snooooo" and "ice". He's also been doing his alligator impression a lot lately - no idea why. He's such a cute boy. I can't wait to show him off to Les's family over Christmas.
5. We attended the Forgotten Carols this week with the Larsons- continuing our yearly tradition. They changed the show quite a bit - but I loved the new singer. Jordan something. He has a really powerful voice.

4. The threadless $10 shirt sales this month- we missed the "Now that's Dope. Indeed" Tee last week but we did manage to score the "I listen to bands that don't even exist yet" Tee this week. We also got a good laugh at this Go Japan! Tee.

3. My great idea to throw a party - a breakfasty- brunch party with the girls/moms in the neighborhood. I can't wait to flaunt my quiche recipe, as well as crepes, and cinnamon bundt cake.

2. My ward Christmas party took place on Saturday night and it all went very well. The food tasted really yummy, we had lots of people come - even more than usual. And the best part for me were the decorations - they were beautiful! The corner display with nativity scenes (with moss velvet fabric woven between and pine swags) looked amazing and the tables with IKEA red and white table runners and pine swags as centerpieces were also fantastic! Everyone raved. Even the old ladies who I feared might find it too modern were making comments. It feels funny to have something you've worked hard on for 3 months be over.

1. Christmas is really here. We have bombarded ourselves with music, we put up our tree (which Les insists we leave the lights on all day and night), and now I just have to figure out what I am going to get for Les. Any ideas?

Monday, December 03, 2007

I love being married

A few nights ago Les and I were able to go to our Stake Bishopric dinner that was held at the Jospeh Smith Memorial Building. We had a great time - the food was really good, the company was great, and John Bytheway came to speak to us. (he is one of my favorite ever speakers - does that make me a teenybopper - or do they say tween now?)

His talk was about marriage. Several times throughout the night he said "I love being married." I remember when Les and I first got married we said that all the time. We told everyone - marriage is wonderful, we love being married. However, it has been a long time since I said it. I'm happy to say that although our marriage has had its adjustments with the addition of Gus, I still LOVE being married.

When I first fell in love with Les I saw him as the most sincere, genuinely kind person I'd ever met. And now that we've been married for 6 years...wo ho let me tell you... He is still the most sincere and kind person I know. I trust him immensely. I look up to him, he has so much wisdom and perspective.

My eldest cousin Sheryl is currently in China undergoing a very painful and arduous process of a stem cell transplant (which is the last hope for her rare and supposedly "incureable" disease). For the last 40 or so days she has been in what they call "the box". This is an 8x8 room which must be completely sterile. Only the doctors and nurses can come in after sterilizing themselves completely and covering up with several layers of clothing. With there 6 children at home, her husband Lon has been in China with her throughout the ordeal and while she is in the box he can only see her and talk to her through a glass window. Here is a part of his most recent email:

For the past 40 days, as Sheryl has either been in the box or with so many tubes and pain that I have not been able to be with her, it is hard to look thru the glass and not be able to hug her. The phone doesn't work most of the time for Sheryl- so I can hear her but she cannot hear me. Many of you have offered to fly over and see Sheryl and me - we had to say no. I truly feel that I am alone and in prison. I have never felt so all alone as I do now. Yes, I feel the peace of the Lord, yes, I have the scriptures, yes, I have prayer-but I am alone and Sheryl is all alone. The people here at the hospital speak either no English or very broken. We speak no Chinese so it is hard to have a conversation. Last night I took Sheryl a sliced apple, some yogurt and a piece of bread. Her nurse microwaved it all for a long time! Of course, it was ruined! So I tried one more time and thru charades the nurse got it right the second time!

(I just had to include that part about the microwave because I thought it was so funny)

He continued writing about how grateful he is for eternal marriage and how hellish eternity would be if he couldn't be with his wife for the next, I don't know, trillion years. They have hope and faith that this treatment will work and that she will be coming home in a few months. It's intersting from an outside perspective to see these, what I saw were perfect people, who had everything in the world going for them - so many blessings- to now be tested by fire and to watch them truely mold into even more saintly purified beings.