Give Oh Give Away!!

For those of you who don’t know her, my good friend Dana is having a GREAT giveaway on her blog. Click here for all the details. You have one of 6 chances to win. Dana has some freakin’ awesome stuff, I have to say. Each of my boys has one of her t-shirts, and I recently purchased some photo notecards. There is even an item from Heather, who crochets the CUTEST stuff ever!! If I had a little girl, they would have all headbands and hair clippies from Heather.

And, if you need good gifts or just would like to help stimulate the economy a little, go to Dana’s Etsy website here or Heather’s website here. Trust me!!!

Just A Few Things

I know you are all dealing with snowstorms and we’re not, so please don’t roll your eyes too much at me. We’ve been getting quite a bit of rain. I love it. What I don’t love is just how stupid Phoenix drivers are when there is some rain.

I was leaving school earlier in the week and only about 2 drops of water hit my windshield. A VERY light mist of rain, if anything, and suddenly everyone is driving 20 miles below the speed limit! In a city where you are considered to be a slow driver if you’re doing anything less than 20 over any other day of the year.

Rain make Arizonians (or maybe just Phoencians???) absolutely nuts. On Wednesday we had a really rainy, windy, chilly day. Ches said his students were trying to convince him it was snowing. They were serious. Now, it was still about 50 degrees out, and I’m sure we all know it has to be a lot colder than 50 to get snow. However these kids thought it was snowing because “the rain isn’t coming down straight.” Seriously. You can’t make this stuff up. Have you ever heard of wind, kids????

*****

Tonight is my school’s Solstice performance. Every year they pick a children’s book as a theme, then each class picks a song to represent a part of that book and does a dance. I was pretty unsure of how it was all going to go until the dress rehearsal yesterday. The kids had parts of their costumes on and each class performed their dances so well. It was adorable!!! I can’t wait for tonight, now. This year’s book is called “The Yellow Leaf” and it’s about changing seasons (or something).

My job is to work the music. I get to press play on the stereo and pause it in between class performances. So exciting. ūüėČ

*****

I was looking for a copy of The Nutcracker to show to my students for Thursday and brought home a couple other movies for the family to watch. We got Wall-E (Dallin has been begging for it!) and A Muppet Christmas Carol (one of my absolute favorites growing up). We all loved Wall-E (and the kids have been watching it almost non-stop). Aiden surprisingly watched the entire Muppet movie and wasn’t scared by the ghosts or anything! He kept telling me how much he liked it. Yay! Someone to share my love of the Muppets with! I think I’ll go out and get the Muppet’s Treasure Island next. That’s a pretty fun one, too.

Ches brought home Hancock from Redbox yesterday. I really liked it! I pretty much like anything that Will Smith does, and this wasn’t one of his typical good-guy characters. If you haven’t seen it, I highly it (just watch out… there’s a bit of bad language, so it’s not suitable for young kids at all).

*****

Speaking of Christmas movies… My favorites are A Charlie Brown Christmas (the best part being where Linus quotes from the New Testament and the other Peanuts start singing “Loo loo loo”), A Christmas Story (“Fra-geeeee-lay. Must be Italian.”), A Muppet Christmas Carol, and Mr. Bean’s Christmas.

Ches hates A Christmas Story. When we were still at Ricks, I remember one night hanging out at our friend Randall’s house with Laural and her roommate, Amy. We were watching A Christmas Story, and Amy and I were just rolling on the floor laughing because we love this movie so much. I think it’s hilarious. Ches, Laural, and Randall, however, sat there complaining the whole night. “This movie is so stupid!” they would tell us, over and over again. “It’s not even funny.” So I never rent it and never watch it because it’s no fun to watch alone.

We’re going to be with my family for Christmas this year. My family loves this movie, so I will watch it with them. Ches can go play with the kids or something. I’m so excited!!! (I’d triple dog dare him to watch it with me, but the point would be lost on him.)

*****

The first time I ever saw Mr. Bean (it was the Christmas one!) was when I was a senior in high school. I was taking Music Theory, and a lot of the class was actually free time. We were all excited about the music of Jurassic Park once, so one girl was going to bring that in for us to watch. She couldn’t find it, however, so we watched The Hand That Rocks The Cradle. Yeah, I know.

Anyway, another girl, Brandi, brought in Mr. Bean once. I’ll never forget the first time watching Mr. Bean play with the Nativity. I could not stop laughing. We watched tons of Mr. Bean after that, and I love to especially watch the Christmas once every year. Even Ches enjoys it (and he’s not usually a huge fan of British humor).

Oh, and in case you were worried… we did learn music theory in the class. Just not everyday. It gave me enough of a background that when I started as a music major at Ricks I was confident enough in my theory abilities that I did well the first year. We won’t talk about Aural Skills or Keyboard Harmony. Blech. (After I finished at Ricks I had a chance to talk to my high school director once. I kind of yelled at him, “You didn’t tell me I’d have to sing. By myself! In front of other people! Sight-singing sucks!” He sheepishly smiled and said, “Oh, I forgot about that.”)

*****

New reason why I love Facebook: videos of my high school marching band have been posted recently. I got to watch my sophomore and junior years’ marching shows. SO. FUN. Sophomore year we did a 60’s show where we played “Yesterday”, “Aquarias”, and “House of the Rising Sun”. It was my favorite show. I always thought we did pretty well, and it was fun to watch it and realize that yeah, we were that good. I can still think that!!!

A lot of my friends have posted pictures from high school in “Remember When” type albums. So. Funny. I wish I had a scanner because I’ve got some great pictures to post. I think my mom has a scanner, and I’ll definitely be looking for stuff at her house over Christmas!

*****

Leaving for Texas on Sunday. My whole family is going to be at my mom’s this year. It’s going to be a very full house, but SO FUN. My dad has to work Christmas Day, so my brother decided to distract the kids from the Christmas presents, we are all going to the beach in Galvastan. My boys are overly excited about going to the beach. I don’t think they understand that it’s not like going to the beach in the summer. We aren’t wearing our swimsuits and playing in the water. But we’ll still have a ball, I’m sure. We went to the beach in New Hampshire all winter long when we lived there. It was cold, but we still found tons to do. I’m sure a beach in south Texas will be fun, too.

*****

Buy a Post Secret book for someone for Christmas this year to help support the website. I’m going to! (And I’m hoping to receive a Post Secret book or two myself)

*****

Since I’ve been so lax in my writing, who knows if I’ll write again before then, so…

MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY HANUKKAH

(whichever you celebrate) ūüėÄ

WHY??? (A Complain-y Post. Be Ye Warned.)

My 3 Day Walk is almost here, and I’m NOT ready. ¬†I still have to raise $450 (or it comes out of my pocket… guess who is giving up her next two paychecks????), my period started today (I haven’t had it since the beginning of September… I’m so unpredictable… it couldn’t wait ONE more week??? ¬†I won’t be done and comfortable by Friday!!), and this evening I wrenched my lower back (OH! ¬†The pain! ¬†I can’t move… I can’t stand up straight… ).

I still need to either borrow or buy an airmattress so I don’t have to sleep on the ground. ¬†I still need some proper clothes to wear (I only have one actual pair of capris that I’ve been walking in, and I’m not wearing the same pair for 3 days in a row), and I need a new waist pack (mine is super small and only holds one water bottle, my cell phone, my driver’s license, and a small amount of cash and I need to hold 2 water bottles, my cell phone, body glide, chapstick, cash, ID, bandaids/moelskin, and an extra pair of socks to change at lunch time). ¬†

I had a rotten day at church today. ¬†The kids in primary can be so obnoxious. ¬†Our primary program is in two weeks, and since I won’t be here next Sunday, we didn’t have Sharing time today, just singing time. ¬†The kids groaned no matter what song I said we were about to sing. ¬†They wouldn’t follow direction, kept talking to their neighbors, and some just flat out wouldn’t sing. ¬†In Senior primary, when I mentioned I wouldn’t be here, the kids cheered. ¬†Thank goodness primary was over right after that, because as soon as the kids were out of the room, I seriously started crying.

Dallin won’t eat food. ¬†Well, he’ll eat junk food, candy, and cereal. ¬†He didn’t have lunch (it’s not unusual for him to skip a meal or two) or dinner, but only wanted milk to drink. ¬†I wouldn’t let him have any milk until he ate some food. ¬†He is one stubborn kid. ¬†He never did get any milk. ¬†I couldn’t even get him to take one measly bite of food. ¬†So no milk, no dessert… nothing! ¬†The kid worries the heck out of me with his constant refusal to eat. ¬†And he’s not the skinny kid in the family. ¬†How is he getting enough nutrition out of cereal and milk and tootsie rolls?? ¬†I don’t get it.

I stopped taking my medication for about 2 months. ¬†I think it was only 2 months. ¬†Anyway, things were not good, and Ches got me a refill. ¬†I’ve been taking it, and I think overall it has helped, but now I’m getting migraines a lot. ¬†I think Welbutrin is not right for me. ¬†I might have to go back to Zoloft, but I hate the way Zoloft makes me feel when I forget to take it even once. ¬†I get all dizzy and feel like I’m about to pass out at any second. ¬†So… off to the doctor I must go to discuss my options.

I think my job is great, but I also think it sucks. ¬†I am not a teacher of young kids. ¬†My degree is in secondary education, and I think if I’m going to teach, that is where I should be. ¬†As sweet as the kids are (most of the time), I’m just not enjoying it like I want. ¬†I am a firm believer in doing what makes you happy. ¬†If I’m going to leave my kids with someone else all day long, I’d better darn well LOVE what I’m doing, not just tolerate it. ¬†And then there’s the whole discipline thing: ¬†I think that most of the classes are fine. ¬†I can handle a little bit of extra noise. ¬†i mean, I’m not in a normal classroom, and these are all toddlers and preschoolers and young elementary school kids. ¬†I don’t expect them to be able to come into a large, muti-purpose room and stay on task 100% of the time. ¬†My methodology is to essentially ignore the little disruptions. ¬†If I ignore them, they go away. ¬†If they don’t go away, then I deal with it appropriately to the situation. ¬†I am so tired of having other people in the school tell me to always be right on top of these kids… to not even give them an inch… blah blah blah. ¬†Just let me handle my classes, thank you very much. ¬†If I have major issues, I will let you or the lead teacher (who is where I’d go to first, anyway) know and we will come up with a plan. ¬†But I just don’t think things are THAT BIG A DEAL, so stop instructing me EVERY DAY on how to teach and discipline my classes.

I’ve been having a real hard time just enjoying my life. ¬†It’s so easy to put on a fake smile and pretend that everything’s great, but I’m getting sick of faking it. ¬†I’m pretty sick of being so lonely. ¬†I go to the park with my kids for the playgroups and I try to talk to the other moms, but I just don’t feel all that comfortable. ¬†One day, after school, one kid had his skateboard at the park. ¬†This other kid, who is probably in 2nd grade, was riding on the other kid’s skateboard, on his knees, when he feel forward and hit his head on the cement. ¬†Of course he starts crying for his mom, but she isn’t there. ¬†Their house is literally across the street. So he immediately runs home. ¬†The other moms say he’s not the type of kid to take comfort from anyone else, but he ran home, so I’m not thinking it’s a big deal. ¬†Then one mom says very emphatically, “THIS is why you come to the park! ¬†You have to watch your kids!” ¬†The other moms all start agreeing and nodding their heads, and they are all talking around this one point, and all I’m thinking by now is “CUT THE APRON STRINGS!” ¬†The kid is old enough to be by himself at the park across the street! ¬†I let Aiden go to the park now all the time without me. ¬†I don’t let Dallin or Parker go, but Aiden, I feel, is old enough to be able to play without my constant supervision. ¬†The park is visible from my house, and Aiden has certain rules he knows and follows (like he is either at the park or at home… he doesn’t go to anyone else’s house, EVER, for anything), so I don’t really worry too much. ¬†You can not watch your kid 100% of the time, ladies! ¬†Let them learn to be responsible for themselves at some point! ¬†(The mom most vocal has kids both older and younger than the hurt boy) ¬†I’m also thinking that if this is how you are talking about someone who isn’t here, what are you saying about me, behind MY back! ¬†Sometimes I’m not there, at the park, when the bus comes in the afternoon. ¬†I would like Aiden to come home first, but most of the time he just stays at the park and plays (because all the other kids are staying and playing), and a couple of the moms mentioned that they have tried telling him to go home and check in with me and whatever. ¬†So I’m wondering what exactly are they saying to each other when I’m not there. ¬†If they are going to say stuff about the one mom and be SO rude about it, I can only assume you do it to me, too.

I’m sick of trying to make friends, but not succeeding. ¬†I just don’t feel a part of anything, no matter what functions or casual meet-ups I attend. ¬†I feel like an outsider. ¬†I miss my old ward and my old friends. ¬†I miss other places we’ve lived because I had such great wards and friends. ¬†I loved my callings, and I loved the friends I had and the plans that we made.

I miss autumn. ¬†It’s my favorite season. ¬†Arizona just doesn’t get an autumn. ¬†It goes from HOT hot hot hot hot summer, to summer, to a mild “winter” (which feels like summer to some of you, perhaps), to summer, and back to HOT hot hot hot hot summer. ¬†It was in the 70’s all last week and it was wonderful!! ¬†Aiden wore a jacket to school each morning (hey, it wasn’t in the 70’s yet that early in the morning) and the boys wore pants instead of shorts and I got cold enough to want hot chocolate at night. ¬†Not that I ever need it to be cold to drink hot chocolate. ¬†It’s just nicer. ¬†But I miss a real autumn, with a cool wind, changing leaves, wearing sweaters and scarves, and seeing my breath in the morning before school (I can do without scraping frost off the car windows in the morning, however).

So, now you know why I haven’t written in a while. ¬†When it rains, it pours. ¬†I have tons more I could complain about, but I need to go to bed and get some sleep before another “fun” day of work tomorrow. ¬†Oh, and I have to pray REAL hard that my back is better so i can function. ¬†I guess tomorrow I gotta try to see a chiropractor. ¬†I can’t let this be like when I hurt my back a couple months ago. ¬†It was a couple of weeks before I was back to normal. ¬†It sucked!!!!

Camping and Pumpkins and Primary, Oh My!

Last week was Fall Break for Ches and Aiden (my school doesn’t have Fall Break, but I only work 2 days a week) so I decided I was done with our family never doing anything or going anywhere. ¬†I went to work Monday, and once I got home we loaded the van and went camping. ¬†We got out a couple of hours later than I had originally planned, but since Ches and I are used to setting our tent up in the dark, it wasn’t that big of a deal. ūüôā
In the tent

We got there, set up the tent, and went to sleep. It got down to the low 40s during the night, so we were pretty cold, but it wasn’t horrible. I think the worst was waking up in the middle of the night to hear coyotes screaming. That’s what it sounded like, anyway. Screaming. It was so freaky!!

On Tuesday, we got in the van and started to drive, just to see what there was. We were camping just outside of Payson. Not too far away we saw the sign for the Tonto Natural Bridge in Tonto National Park, so we decided to check it out. It was so fun! We got to take a small hike to see a waterfall, and we had a picnic lunch while we were there.
Cheese!

After lunch, we jumped back in the van and continued to drive. The boys fell asleep, and we woke them up to see Potato Lake. They liked seeing all the animal tracks around the lake and climbing on the fallen trees.
On the tree

We drove up Kehl Ridge, and at the top got to see a gorgeous view. I’m not a photographer, and I’m sure I had my camera settings wrong, so this just doesn’t do it justice.
The View

That night, back at camp, we roasted marshmallows and made s’mores and had hot chocolate. The kids had a blast running around, “collecting firewood” (which really meant picking up sticks and throwing them into the campfire).

Wednesday morning we packed up and went home. It was a short camping trip, but perfect for us right now. We figured out that Parker has never actually been out of Phoenix… he’s never been in the car for more than an hour at a time! He had a hard time that first night. Parker really didn’t like being strapped in the car for so long. (Driving to Texas for Christmas is going to be interesting)

On Saturday Ches and I took the kids to Vertuccio Farms, which is a farmer’s market, pumpkin patch, corn maze, and more. The kids jumped in a bouncy house, pet and fed some farm animals, and ran through a hay bale maze for kids. Then, as a family, we went through the corn maze. That didn’t go over as well!!
corn maze
Yay sheep!!
The boys

It was a good week, overall. Until Sunday.

Sundays are hard. It’s hard to be dressed up and have to sit quietly and be reverent during chruch. I get that. But Aiden has SUCH an attitude lately! As you may know, I’m the song leader in Primary (basically the children’s church). We had just started Singing Time when a sister from the Relief Society (the women’s organization) came in to make an announcement. They were getting a group together for whoever wanted to join to make rag quilts. She was showing some quilts as an example and said, “So if you are interested, let me know…” when Aiden stands up and says very loudly, “My family is NOT interested in THAT!”

I was SO embarrassed. I told him to sit down. I actually am interested in participating in this activity. Aiden just thinks it’s girly and is anti anything girly these days. It’s one thing to not want the pink cereal bowl, however. It’s quite another to be rude in front of the entire Primary. So he got quite an earful after church (even though when I went to apologize to the sister for Aiden’s rudeness, she just laughed it off and said she can’t wait to tell her grown kids about it. At least she thought it was cute!) and we’re working on limiting outbursts now.

Today is a new day. I’m cleaning and cooking and baking and ignoring the kids who are begging for ice cream for breakfast. I don’t have to work today, and we have friends coming over for Thanksgiving. Hooray!! it’s a great day today!!

Weekend Update

It’s been a really busy/interesting weekend. ¬†Friday started off well… we all love Fridays, as it is the last day of school before the weekend, and since this was a long weekend, it was even better. ¬†Friday evening we learned that Ches’ cousin, Nathan, passed away that morning, so it became kind of a somber day for us. ¬†While not unexpected, it’s still hard, as Ches is really fond of that particular branch of the family. ¬†We’re really going to miss Nathan. ¬†We are both upset that Ches’ school district has screwed up his paycheck, so we can’t drive up to Utah for the funeral. Although, even if he had gotten what he was supposed to get, I think we are still too poor to be able to afford the gas money to drive up there. ¬†So we are both sad about that. ¬†We want to be there, but we can’t. ¬†It sucks, but oh well. ¬†

If any of the Vons are reading this, our sympathies to you. ¬†We’re really sad to not be able to be up there with you guys this week. ¬†Just know we’re thinking of all of you, especially Kristy and the boys. ¬†Again, we’re really going to miss Nathan.¬†¬†

Saturday was a really busy day. ¬†We were still kind of somber, but with all the plans we had, it was hard not to have fun. ūüôā ¬†Dana was visiting a friend of hers, so we met them at Ikea and did some shopping. ¬†Then we all headed to a really fun splash park at Tempe Beach. ¬†We left there for a swimming/BBQ/ birthday party for the son of a friend in Tempe, then came back to Gilbert for a “Jimmy Buffett” party that was hosted by the parents of Ches’ drum instructor. ¬†It was also a pool/BBQ party, and Peter, the drum instructor, is in a steel band, so we got to hear them play. ¬†This was their 12th or 13 year of throwing this party. ¬†SO many people of all ages there. ¬†You could tell it was a popular tradition! ¬†That was a really, really fun party, and if we hadn’t been so tired we would have stayed longer. ¬†It was really long day, so we headed home and we all crashed (actually, everyone else crashed. ¬†I headed to Wal-Mart for some food and birthday presents for the next day).

Sunday I slept in, but the boys got Ches up nice and early. ¬†It was Ches’ 36th birthday, so before church I wanted to get the cake made. ¬†As I was in the middle of that, I got a call asking me to sub in Dallin and Parker’s nursery class. ¬†I’m already in Primary, so I couldn’t, but for some reason the call triggered my memory. ¬†Aiden was supposed to give a talk in Primary!! ¬†Aaaahhhh!! ¬†So after I got the cake in the oven, Aiden and I went to the filing cabinet and took out his old talks and picked one. ¬†I’m so thankful I’ve kept his old talks!! ¬†He chose the one he wrote last year on “The Creation”. ¬†He did a really, really good job reading his talk. ¬†Of course everyone was impressed with his reading skills. He only mispronounced two words… he pronounced the “h” in “herbs” and he said “image” like “im-MAHGE” and with a soft “g”. ¬†Cracked me up. ¬†Ches, too. ¬†

After church and naps, I made Ches’ requested orange chicken for dinner (I went the easy route and bought one of those easy dinners from Wal-Mart. ¬†I much prefer the Trader Joe’s orange chicken, but we don’t have a TJ’s close to home, and it was so late once I went to the store anyway. Another time, perhaps.) ¬†After dinner we did presents (Ches got an iTunes gift card, a DVD of all the Pixar shorts, Phase 10 dice, and some almond rocca), then cake. ¬†He had asked for a black forest cake, which I have never made before. ¬†I found a nice, easy recipe, and most of the reviews on it were favorable, so I tried it, but I only modified the frosting and made it a two layer, round cake. ¬† It turned out really well, but it was NOT what Ches was expecting. ¬†Now, I’m not normally a cherry fan, and I’ve never liked cherry and chocolate mixed, so I didn’t know what a black forest cake really was. ¬†This is not it. ¬†This should be called a chocolate cherry cake. ¬†THIS is more of what Ches had expected. ¬†So, I’ll have to try again, I think (just not really soon… Parker’s birthday is in one week, and I think we might be caked out for a while). ¬†Anyway, everyone like the cake, and then we all went upstairs to watch the Pixar shorts.

Today was our lazy day. ¬†The boys still got Ches up early and I still got to sleep in, but we just hung around the house most of the day. ¬†Ches got some school work done, I cleaned the bedrooms and loft, and then about 4:30, Ches took off for school. ¬†The band was supposed to help Chick Fill-A do some promotions for their new Chick-n-Strips. ¬†Chick Fill-A has really helped Ches’ band out over the past couple years, so even though it was a holiday, most of the kids said they could be there. ¬†I packed the kids up in the van about 5:15 so we could eat out, but the band wasn’t there. ¬†My cell phone was out of power (oops), so we drove to the high school. Ches was there with just two students. ¬†The rest had all gone home already. ¬†The busses never showed to take the kids to Chick Fill-A, and there was no one to get a hold of to find out what was going on. ¬†It was so disappointing!! ¬†Once the remaining students were picked up, however, our family went to Chili’s and used the last of the gift certificate Ches won in a radio contest a month or so ago. ¬†Yummy food. ¬†ūüôā ¬†Oh, and we remembered why we rarely take the kids out. ¬†It’s just too hard. ¬†Dallin didn’t want to sit in his chair. ¬†He wanted to dance to the music and “play games” (he could see the TV in the bar and thought that must be a fun place, even though we kept telling him that wasn’t games, but a room just for grown-ups. ¬†Aiden wanted more of an explanation, so I finally said it’s where grown ups go to drink alcohol, and before I could finish with any more of an explanation, Aiden practically yelled, “Alcohol?!?!?! ¬†Oh no!! ¬†We don’t drink alcohol!!!!!” ¬†The hostess started giggling at that.). ¬†So there is nothing leisurely about taking the kids someplace other than McDonald’s. ¬†They’ll grow out of this, right?? ¬†Right????

So, that was our holiday weekend. ¬†Full of unexpected twist and turns, full of swimming and parties. ¬†It was fun, but now I need a couple more days to recuperate from the weekend. ¬†I’m tired.

We’re In! (And Other Randomness)

So we’re in the house. ¬†yay! ¬†We still have boxes everywhere and it feels super chaotic here, but that will sort it out soon enough. ¬†The kitchen is a lot smaller than my last few kitchens, so I’m trying to get it all set comfortably for me. ¬†That’s probably the hardest job right now. ¬†At least we have an actual pantry here.

*****

Dallin is having the hardest time adjusting. ¬†The first couple of days he kept saying he wanted to go home now, and when we said “But this is our home now” he would start to cry and yell, “No! ¬†It’s not home!” ¬†He’s doing better, and last night was the first night he didn’t wake up screaming and freaking out in the middle of the night.

*****

We got our phone and internet hooked back up on Tuesday. ¬†It’s nice to feel connected to the world again, even if all the phone calls we’ve received are from telemarketers.

*****

My stepmom’s father passed away last weekend. ¬†The viewing is tomorrow and the funeral is Saturday. ¬†I feel awful that we can’t be there, all because of the price of gas. ¬†Lancaster is definitely within a day’s drive from here, so it would be do-able, but we just plain don’t have the money. ¬†Money sucks.

What’s that quote? ¬†Something like, “Money only matters to those that don’t have it.” ¬†How true that is.

*****

We rented some movies recently with a gift card a friend gave us. ¬†We read about the story of Noah and the ark for Family Home Evening on Monday, then planned to watch “Evan Almighty”, but the kids were horrible and we sent them to bed. ¬†Ches and I watched the movie. ¬†It was really cute. ¬†Definitely good for a family. ¬†Steve Carrell is hilarious. ¬†I’m really starting to enjoy his work (I’ve ever really watched him before and no, I don’t watch “The Office”. ¬†Flame me later for that, ‘kay?). ¬†I especially liked the scene where Evan starts telling God that this isn’t in his plans, then he tells God what all his plans were and God starts laughing. ¬†It made me think of one of my favorite quotes: ¬†“If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” ¬†It has certainly held true in my life.

At the end of the movie I told Ches,”I sure hope God is like Morgan Freeman’s portrayal of God. ¬†He’s kind, loving, and really funny. ¬†I’d like to think that is was God is really like.” ¬†Both of these “Almighty” movies (Evan and Bruce) just make me happy to have some faith. ¬†Probably silly, but still. ¬†That’s just me.

*****

In case anyone was wondering… yes, it is hot here. ¬†And yes, it’s going to get hotter. ¬†How do we stand it? ¬†We have air conditioning. ¬†And we drink lots of water. ¬†And eat lots of ice cream and Otter Pops.

*****

I’m all signed up for The 3 Day walk. ¬†I’m working on my personal page (I thought it was all set up, but I guess not). ¬†You can visit it at¬†http://08.the3day.org/goto/Sariah.Sharp¬†

Feel free to make a donation online, or just keep up with my progress. ¬†I’ll be keeping a blog there, as well as on my personal fitness/weight loss blog (“So Long, Fatty!”) that will mark most of my journey through training and fundraising.

*****

Ches just told me that some friends of ours who are moving to Wisconsin are loading their truck tonight. ¬†I didn’t think they were leaving until next week!! ¬†Anyway, looks like we’ll be driving out to Tempe tonight. ¬†Aiden has to at least say goodbye to Carter!

*****

I’m thinking of setting up an email account for Aiden. ¬†He has enough long-distance friends now. ¬†He loves letters — both giving and receiving — but is horrible about sitting down and actually writing. ¬†He loves being on the computer, though. ¬†I don’t know. ¬†He’s only 5, but if I monitor it well, maybe it could be a good thing? ¬†I don’t know. ¬†I keep going back and forth on this.

*****

Well, back to unpacking and such. ¬†Fun fun fun. ¬†ūüėõ

Baby Boom

Doesn’t it feel like every person you know is either pregnant or just had a baby?¬† Seems like it here.¬† Every night, in our family prayers, we ask for blessings for each of our pregnant friends and family members that the pregnancies will go well and both the mother and baby are healthy.¬† For a while, we were naming the people we were praying for, but then the list got too long.¬† We can’t remember everyone!!¬† We have Emily, Rachel, Tanya, Jean, Laural, April, Anna (although she just had hers), Kris, Tenille… I think that’s it.¬† Seriously!¬† I can’t remember!¬† It’s just too many!

In our immediate families, we have two babies (girls)¬†coming on Ches’ side and one (boy)¬†on my side.¬† Which means I get to shop for some really cute pink stuff (if you don’t like it, tough.¬† I have all boys and I want to shop for pink, frilly things!!¬† I don’t get to do that!!!), and possibly hand down a couple of really cute boy things.

Which reminds me… Alyson, do you want a winter coat and snow boots for Tweedle 3?¬† For next year, that is?¬† My kids have now outgrown that stuff, and we obviously don’t use it a whole lot here in Arizona! ūüôā

I love new babies.¬† They are just so precious with their little, wrinkled hands and that old man look to their face.¬† They are so soft, so quiet, and so cuddly.¬† I love that they sleep so much because it’s a great excuse to just sit and hold them.

Uhhh, I’m not saying I want another baby right now.¬† Nope.¬† No baby hunger here.¬† I’m not even kidding.¬† I don’t think I could survive having another child right now.¬† Give me at least another year before I think about it.

Until I have another one… I will enjoy everyone else’s babies.¬† Mostly because it’s not my baby, so I don’t have to do the nighttime feedins and the diaper changes and deal with the pukies and all that.¬† I just get the cuddly stuff.¬† Perfection!

Pay It Forward

This looks like so much fun!  I got this from Julia, who got this from Karen.  If you want me to send you something awesome from Arizona (or what *I* deem awesome from Arizona), follow these rules: 

1. Leave a comment that says you want to receive something from me and you want to Pay It Forward. The first THREE to agree to Pay It Forward at their blogs will get a gift from me. I need your home address, so I will respond to your comments by email and request your addresses.

2. The three winners must do the same thing on their blogs, so the Pay It Forward challenge will continue.

Friends Forever (at least online)

Hello, my name is Sariah and I am addicted to Facebook.¬† Not because it’s Facebook, but because you all know I’m actually addicted to Scrabulous.¬† I was questioning the validity of my having a Facebook account for a while until I played Scrabulous the first time (losing spectacularly to Karen, I might add).¬† I only joined Facebook because I was invited by Kris, I had heard about it from Erica, and thought “Why not check it out?”

It was the same thing as MySpace.¬† A friend from college invited me and I had heard all this hype about it, so I thought I had nothing to lose (except maybe some dignity as a “grown up” who was too good for such childish things!!¬† heh).¬† I joined MySpace long before I joined Facebook.¬† I did connect with some old friends from college and high school, and that was cool.¬† But overall, it was nothing special to me.

The thing is, these sites give us this false sense of popularity and friendship.¬† I have reconnected with all sorts of people I used to know and have lost contact with, but I’m not sure “reconnected” is really the right word.¬† We’re “friends” on MySpace and Facebook, and maybe we’ve sent a nice little message to each other saying “What’s up???¬† What’s new in your life???¬† My life is wonderful!!”, but other than that I don’t think I’ve truely connected with anyone.¬† I play Scrabulous with my current friends.¬† I send comments or write on the walls or send those mystery flowers to my current friends.¬† I receive comments or mystery flowers or funwall posts or whatever from my current friends.¬† My old friends that I’m supposedly reconnecting with are just pictures and a name under the category of “friends”.

If Hasbro has their way and gets rid of Scrabulous, I don’t know if I’ll keep on Facebook.¬† It’s just another waste of time and pretense.¬† I haven’t looked at my MySpace page in a few months.¬† I should just shut it down.¬† It’s also a waste of time and pretense.¬† I miss my old friends and wish we were still in each other’s lives, but unless we actually make an effort and rekindle our friendship with more than a picture on Facebook, I just don’t see friendship with them in the future. (I’m not saying my friends need to make the effort, by the way.¬† I do, too.¬† It has to be a mutual thing!)¬†

It’s funny how you can have “98 Friends” on one of these social networking sites, but still feel as lonely as you did before you ever signed up for the site.¬† I think they should change it from “Friends” to “People I May or May Not Have Known at Some Point in the Past”.

My friends these days are you, my devoted readers who “converse” with me through our blogs.¬† My best friends these days are my family.¬† My extended family who I talk to regularly (or semi-regularly) on the phone.¬† Mostly,¬† my husband and kids.¬† They are my best friends and I have the best time with them!¬† I shouldn’t need Facebook to tell me I have friends.¬† I do.¬† I’m satisfied.

Mmmmm, Foooooood

My kids have become picky eaters.¬† I don’t really know when it happened.¬† Aiden used to love vegetables so much that he surprised my friends one night when he asked for a salad.¬† My friends were watching him for the evening and had made tacos for dinner.¬† What two year old asks for salad??¬†

One of Dallin’s favorite first foods what broccoli and beef with steamed rice.¬† Those were not really fun diapers to change, but he loved that broccoli!¬† Now, however, I’m happy if he eats one actual meal a day.¬† He’ll eat some snacks (and I try to keep out the really bad junk… but it’s also just easy to give him a package of fruit snacks), he’ll drink just about anything I give him, but he really won’t eat.

Since I wanted to eat more healthily, I thought I did well Saturday night with dinner:¬† Grilled salmon fillets, steamed veggies, steamed white rice (I can’t bring myself to do brown yet.¬† Sorry).¬† Ches hates fish, so I grilled a chicken breast on the George Foreman grill for him.¬†

Right as we were about to eat, the doorbell rang.¬† My neighbor had come over to practice with me as we were playing a special musical number in church the very next day.¬† I was kind of surprised to see her two kids with her, but I welcomed them all in.¬† Now, her kids aren’t exactly “normal” kids.¬† They have behavior problems.¬† They are overweight.¬† The boy has just been diagnosed with learning disabilities and a slight case of Asperger’s and was switched to new classes where he receives a lot more attention.¬† He is a 6th grader.¬† The girl is in elementary school.¬† I don’t know if she has any learning disabilities or anything at this point.

Well, her kids immediately set out to play with mine.¬† Fine.¬† Except they hadn’t eaten yet.¬† Needless to say, my kids were so busy showing off, being loud, and running around that they really dind’t get anything eaten until I was done practicing with my neighbor.¬† She took her kids and left, which brought the decible level in my house down considerably.¬† Ches and I rounded up our kids to try eating dinner again (with me this time), and I was all set to be proud of the boys because I could see they had eaten the salmon off their plate.

Not so.¬† The kids didn’t touch their plates.¬† Ches of course didn’t touch the salmon.¬† I was practicing.¬† Who does that leave???¬† Hmmmm….¬† That’s weird.

(EDIT – I forgot to mention this paragraph, so I’m adding it in now.¬† Which is okay because I don’t think anyone has read this post yet anyway…)¬† In church on Sunday morning, we ended up sitting in the same pew as this family.¬† The boy switched seats so he could sit by Aiden (which did not please me as I was working hard to get him to stay reverent and he did not need the distraction of the boy), and as Aiden was eating some fruit snacks and a granola bar, this boy was trying to be subtle and asking him for some of his food.¬† I had to tell the boy “no” at one point because I only bring a few snacks and they have to last all three of my boys for all of church.¬† I don’t mind sharing¬†with other babies in Sunday School because by then my two older boys are in their own classes and the other babies’ moms usually share snacks with Parker, too.¬† But I didn’t like this 12 year old begging snacks off my 5 year old.

Last night my neighbor called to ask me if they could drop off her daughter this morning for school as the mom had to go sub at 7 am and the dad had to leave for work by 7:30 am and school doesn’t start until 8:20.¬† I’ve given the girl lots of rides, so I said “Sure, no problem.”

7:30 came, and so did the girl.¬† Aiden and Dallin were just starting breakfast.¬† As they finished up and Aiden went to get dressed, the girl said to me, “I’m hungry.”¬† Several times she said that.¬† Now what am I supposed to do, I thought.¬† We don’t have any money and I’m being stingy with food so we can make whatever we have work and this kid wants to eat??

I asked the girl if she had breakfast, thinking the answer was yes so I could tell her, “suck it up!”, however she said no, her dad woke her up, got her dressed, and brought her over.¬† Hmmmmm… weird.¬† So I fed her breakfast.

This is kind of bothering me.¬† I mean, who goes to someone else’s house and eats off the KIDS plates??¬† Who sends their daughter off to someone else’s house to go to school without getting her totally ready (which means EATING breakfast)??¬† And when did it become part of my job description to take things away from my own strugling family just to help out another family???¬† It’s just food, but it’s getting to me.

I don’t know.¬† What do you think?