Friday, January 30, 2009

eat your heart out IHop!

because this little apron whipped up something delicious for dinner last night! in honor of paulie bleaker we did a little breakfast for supper because, you know, it's his favorite. we made cinnamon sugar banana pancakes with strawberries and powdered sugar for dinner. i left the strawberries off mine and added a little peanut butter...mmmmm....delish! i know, i know - probably not the healthiest dinner but the cinnamon and brown sugar made the pancakes dark so if you squint and use your imagination you could pretend that there were whole grain and they included fruit so i'm not feeling too badly about it. plus it was like dessert built right into dinner so no need for something sweet after. that's my kind of dinner! generally i like whole grain pancakes but darek vetoed it last night. however if you make this with whole grain pancakes and cut back on the sugar then it would be a decent and inexpensive meal...just a suggestion.

i did a little experiment this week and decided that i wasn't going to spend any money or go to the grocery store. i wanted to see how long we could eat out of our cupboards. i even busted out the bread machine and made bread when we ran out. i felt so pioneerish and loved it. OK, so i had to go to the grocery store once because we were having guests for dinner and i needed fresh salad ingredients. and i might have picked up a few other little, eensy, weensy items, but mostly we just ate what was in the house and i must say it was a yummy and creative week. and it's not like i have a banana tree growing in the backyard so i had to make a few exceptions. if i had a garden {it would be dead and FROZEN right now} then i could provide my own fresh ingredients which would be great. all in due time, i suppose.

today i've got honey granola whole wheat bread baking in the breadmaker. i had to experiment a little with the recipe but if it turns out well i'll post it for you bread machine owners out there. i know, i can hardly call myself pioneerish if i'm using a breadmaker but i'm trying. we did have a couple power-outages this week due to the weather. that's when we busted out the battery-powered laptop and watched movies. my pioneer ancestors were probably turning in their graves. can't even rough it for one evening? oh i have a long way to go...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

detail or clutter?
not perfect at this, but working on it


ah, just the sound of the word makes my life easier. by nature i've been an over-doer all my life. forget giving 100%, i'm shooting for 1000% here and quickly running myself into the ground. i remember the fist time i heard the phrase "sometimes less is more." my friend said it to me in high school. we were planning a school dance or picking out decorations or prom dresses or toppings for our frozen yogurt or some such choice with life and death consequences. what a liberating concept. hmmm...sometimes 100% or even 75% or whatever is just fine. *exhale* i do love details but i've come to discover that there is a very fine line between detail and clutter and it takes a wise mind and a keen eye to know the difference.

fast forward a few years and i'm serving in the stake primary presidency where my dear friend, the president, reminded me over and over again that my role as her counselor was to keep her from going overboard. to remind her when we were making things too complicated. to simplify.

then i became a therapist and lo and behold! a lot of heartache and suffering in this world is due to the inability to simplify our lives. too much stuff and sound and indulgence and chaos and running around. no deep breaths, no quiet moments, no herbal tea...

i'm also a natural born pack rat, born of a natural born pack rat (sorry, mom) but have again over the years discovered the glorious liberation born of the oft overlooked concept of "throwing things away!" or better yet, giving things away. trash turned to treasure. but again, fine line between trash and treasure. trash = throw away!

knowing the difference, that's the key. is this a detail that's making my life more beautiful, more peaceful, more me? or is this clutter that is blurring my vision?

it reminds me of the serentity prayer, one of my favorites. something i used often as a therapist ~ for my clients as well as for myself.

God grant me the serenity to
the things i can not change
the courange to
the things i can
and the
to know the difference

the wisdom to know the difference...

i find that sometimes my life fills up with clutter. my mind fills up with clutter. my house fills up with clutter and it's time to clean it all out. if i'm walking through a store and i spy a you-can't-pass-this-up deal on a whatsit, a thingamajig or a whatchmacallit and i think i just can't live without i take a deep breath and remember all the whatsits, thingamajigs and whatchamacallits at my house and boldly and bravely keep on walking! not always, but i try. i've decided that if there isn't a place for it in my house then there isn't a place for it in my life. there are exceptions of course, living in a small space, i have to be realistic that sometimes things get a little tight, but if i can keep that at a minimum then i'm a happy girl.

i laid in bed for two hours last night before falling asleep. darek was headed into his third REM cycle just as i was headed to my third bathroom visit. no matter how tired i am my mind will not sleep! it's full of clutter. i'm making to do lists and boo hoo lists and woo hoo lists and all manner of lists...clutter. it helps for me to journal and pray and clear that stuff out, and oftentime having a clean physical space helps me have a clean emotional space.

i read THIS talk this week. i love it. one of my favorites. it talks about henry david thoreau. he lived in a small cabin at walden pond for two years, leading a very simplified life style. he concluded that to survive one must have four things: food, clothing, shelter and fuel. L. Tom Perry talked about these four things and placed them beautifully within the framework of the gospel. and here it is, as simple as can be:

food ~ follow the Word of Wisdom, care for the physical and spiritual self
clothing ~ practice modesty, present yourself well
shelter ~ live within your means, avoid debt
fuel ~ feed your spirit with spiritual fuel

i love it. it makes it so simple. when in doubt, simplify. and i've always loved studying the word of wisdom, not just in the sense of avoiding harmful things but also in the spirit of embracing healthful things. check out more about this HERE or click on my tomato to the right.

and in the spirit of simplicity i've again been chanting to myself all week long:
use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without!

Monday, January 26, 2009

great wall of chocolate anyone?

after seeing valkyrie (did i spell that correctly?) with the coxes on friday night (good, sad, interesting), someone one (i won't name names, *ahem* ME) had the bee-rilliant idea of following up the movie with a little something sweet called the great wall of delicious layers of muy (don't know "very" in chinese) chocolatey deliciousness. i've not always been connoisseur of fine chocolate but as i've entered the mystical land of thrity-year-old-women i've joined hands with all other hormonal women in more fully appreciating the deliciousness of chocolate. i admit however, that i am a chocolate snob. no brown waxy business for me! only smooth rich deliciousness, like that found in the seven layers of the great wall. run, run as fast as you can to your nearest PF Changs.
and you'll also notice we scarfed our walls in the split second between our server setting down our plates and picking up our camera. too delish to wait.

darek and i had a second date night saturday night! it's like we've suddenly discovered the wonderful world of babysitters and life has taken on a whole new meaning. that of after bedtime excursions. it's quite wonderful. we went out to dinner at Tu y Yo in powderhouse square, an all too authentic mexican restaurant that serves a variety of cacti species, black mold and fried, stuffed, you name it, grasshoppers. where are the enchiladas? "where are the cheeeeps?" we went out on a limb and although we passed up the moldy insects, we tried some other delicacies of the pork and plantain nature. much more palatable then the rest of the menu. it was good, but don't go there...expensive, small portions, grasshoppers, etc.

darek spent saturday afternoon with atticus while i went to the temple. it was lovely. so peaceful. i love escaping the chaos and clutter of the world for a while. i've always wanted to get some good night shots of the temple but the fates worked against me by way of sub-zero wind that single handedly frostbit my face off while effectively shaking my tripod, thus preventing much in terms of impressive photography. oh well. it was lovely nonetheless and i'll be making these spouseless trips to the temple more often if you care to join me.

because it's becoming a weekend habit to spend both friday and saturday night with the coxes they joined up with us after our fried grasshopper evasion and we watched We Are Marshall. it was good, i cried. i daresay we each shed a tear or two but i won't embarrass shawn and darek by admitting this. it made me want to go outside and yell "WE ARE" and listen for someone to respond with "MARSHALL!"

we've been bundling and spending time out of doors despite the frostbite. i mean, who needs pinkies anyway? atticus prefers walking like a big boy to strollering like a baby boy. each time he felt brave enough to approach the snow, he'd step on the ice and change his mind. he'll make it to the snow someday.

although darek's busy season officially ended last friday he's still got some stuff to finish up and is working late tonight. bummer. i'm looking forward to more time with darek at home, so is atticus. it's an extra special treat when dad is still here in the morning when atticus gets up, or gets home in time to play before bedtime in the evenings. i love to see how excited they both get to see each other, can't tell which is the one year old...

i hope you each had a great weekend and are staying warm this week. and cry me a river you californian-arizonian-las vegasians! no "gosh it's been so hot here lately" comments to this post. i don't want to hear it! there must be some really important life lesson for me to learn from this twenty degree weather...any ideas?


Saturday, January 24, 2009

i saw this guy

on the subway
pull up his shirt
to scratch his stomach
he was wearing
women's nude nylons
pulled all the way
above his belly button


Thursday, January 22, 2009

do any of you miss your kids
after they go to sleep?

i do
i spend all day with that little guy
and i get real tired running around
and it's always nice to have some quiet time
and i'm real grateful that he's such a good sleeper
(he slept in until TEN-THIRTY this morning)
and i don't want that to change


i admit
i miss his when he's asleep
i love to see evidence of him all over the house


i know atticus has more blocks then any one year old requires but when i found these vintage blocks, the "big block" version, not like the little whimpy ones i got him from target, i could not resist.

and he's real happy about that

and i just can't resist making him happy

i tried to post a video of him stacking the blocks that the LV mccoys sent him for christmas but blogger was not cooperating. in fact, does anyone else have the problem that blogger automatically uploads any photos you put on your blog into your web albums and then when they fill up, you have to delete some of your web albums to get more space? and it always messes up my spacing. any suggestions?


back to the little bug

and his big blocks


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

let freedom ring!!

"We ask you to help us work for that day
when black will not be asked to give back,
when brown can stick around,
when yellow will be mellow,
when the red man can get ahead, man,
and when white will embrace what is right."
~joseph lowery, inaugural benediction

today was a great day in our nation's history!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

girls night at bonbon's
bonnie's husband is chillin in china all month so she decided to have some girlies over to do girlie things like play light as a feather, stiff as a board and truth or dare. lisa fell asleep so we froze her brazier and put her hand in hot water. we also did a crappy christmas gift yankee swap. in other words, we regifted our worst christmas gifts we got this year. my mother-in-law stashed a 100 dollar bill in a used book that my sister-in-law had already read and hated just because she needed something to put the cash in. sharla left the book at my house when she went home since she hated it anyway. so i regifted it. sans the 100 dollar bill of course since that wasn't the crappy part of the gift. however, being the funny chick that i am, i put a 1 dollar bill in the book. and to be even more generous i put one of the garbage pail kids in it that santa left me in my stocking. and to top off the awesome-ness i made a cd with christmas music, so the gift wasn't a total loss. some funny things were exchanged however. i lucked out and got a fridge magnet alphabet set for atticus which is something i had tried to find for him for christmas anyway! so great!
so kate got tracy's gift: a loofah and an ornament of the ogden temple that her mother-in-law had given her. i laughed really hard at this one.
leslie got my book, which the other girlies said was actually by a good author so hopefully she'll like it. and as you can see she is already half way through it.
elizabeth got some sweet little hawaiian shirt coasters that bonnie's mother-in-law made her (what is it with regifting mother-in-law gifts? hmmm...)
bonnie's gift was hilarious. soap on a rope shaped like a hand. in other words GROPE on a rope! awesome. perfect for her husbandless month, but i won't make that crass joke...
lisa got some mary kay lotion that kate's mom gave her over a year ago, smelled a little stale
and tracy got a grow your own jesus. i had to laugh when i remembered that amy filled up the entire bathtub to grow her own boyfriend and was so disappointed the next morning when he only grew to 5 inches tall! she thought he'd be a full SIX feet tall! how classic is that?
and gatsby got a stomach ache from eating the food i accidentally dropped on the floor. oh yeah, and the whole brownie he so stealth-like snatched off the plate that i set on the floor while putting on my shoes. he even ripped the foil off the get the brownie, all before i could intervene...sorry bonnie! and your welcome gatsby.

we chatted and chatted until early in the morn as girls are wont to do when husband and childless (except for jonas. he did come. and i did hold him. and i did love it.) we talked about some funny things...things girls tend to talk about when their husbands aren't around and they've eaten too many **** and @@@@ and %%%% and ####. it was all very funny.

thank you bon bon for the really fun night!

atticus loves his new magnets. he actually found the bag the next morning and brought them to me with a "what's this/are these for me?" look on his face. he knows that anything florescent colored in this house most likely belongs to him. i showed him how to stick them on the fridge and he got very excited. he clapped for himself after each and every one he successful stuck to the fridge. and do you love his gangster style jammies in this picture? i could only get the top button done up before he sped away.

yesterday i met up with jhordan downtown to see twilight again...much better the second time around although the painful parts were still p.a.i.n.f.u.l! awk-ward! ah but it hurts so good!
then jhord and shawn came over last night for pizza and another bad movie - the x-files - did not hurt so good that time.
and today i stayed home from church for a poopy migraine! not fun. but that's not stopping me from eating a brownie right now. what can i say? we're trying to not eat treats during the better finish off the brownies tonight!
i hope you had a fun weekend too, but without the migraine!
sweet dreams

Friday, January 16, 2009


while i was in the kitchen this morning making atticus' breakfast he was busy in the other room digging through my diaper bag to find breakfast all on his own. he found this little orange, his favorite and dug right in. he just bites through the peel, spits it out, then digs into the orange. i'm so glad he's such a competent little eater!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

it worries me just a titch

that my one year old knows what to do with a cell phone
he also knows to point the remote at the tv
and loves to put food in other people's mouths
my little copy cat
deep in conversation. this is a very important call.

when in doubt

check the trash can because that's probably where atticus stashed it. i've been missing one of my pink fuzzy slippers for the last few days and i have a sneaking suspicioun it got thrown out with the trash last week. i also just dug around in the trash can to see if atticus dropped my urban outfitters gift card in fun...

Monday, January 12, 2009

last weekend

we went on a date! we saw Doubt with philip seymour hoffman and meryl streep. as you can imagine the acting is very well done although the story was not a feel good warm fuzzy story but still very thought provoking and good. it was nice to get out and spend some time with the hubby although it was about zero degrees. must bundle!

i felt sorry for this bum i found in chinatown, so i brought him home with me.

church was cancelled on sunday due to snow storms. now don't get me wrong. i dig church. but i must admit it is so nice to have an unexpected day home with the family. we did all kinds of stay-home-on-sunday type activities. like build forts.

play with our favorite toys

and draw pictures for dad

on saturday we took a little trip to target and i just had to take a picture of atticus standing up in the cart. this is his favorite thing to do. there is no sitting in the cart, just standing and pretending like he's leonardo dicaprio being "the king of the world" on the titanic. he just looks around and points at everything then turns around to make sure that i am seeing all the wonders of the world that he is seeing. it makes me laugh everytime.

atticus had a weight check today with the doctor to see if we've been able to remedy his mini-man-ness over the last six weeks and he's put on over two pounds! thattaboy!

Friday, January 09, 2009

does your one year old have a purple ear?

because mine does...
oh well
i guess a purple ear is better than a black eye
or a green face
or a red and white polkadot throat
or whatever kind of body discoloration random illnesses can bring

these pictures don't show just how purple that little ear is. he smacked it on the bookshelf a few nights ago. it made me real sad. even after he was over it and playing again and didn't even remember that he had a purple ear i still felt real sad.

but he's a happy camper regardless

he's even thinking of applying to harvard
where they are inclusive of individuals of all ear colors

he's been quite into organizing his toys of late. this cupcake pan is his current favorite kitchen item to pull out of the drawer below the stove and fill with toys. i find the pan in very random places, like under my bed.

ever since learning how to stack the wooden rings onto the wooden peg he tries out all his toys to see if they'll stack too. he lucked out with his slinky. he usually tries to stack blocks and balls and whatever else he's holding onto the peg with no luck.

and he got a belated birthday gift this week: this bag!
plus it had a really great wooden train in it as well which he also loves!
thanks midge and daisy :)

the end


Thursday, January 08, 2009

and the winners are...
drumroll please

i let atticus randomly select three names out of a hat and here they are:

1} jen r. from the always clever the dog ate my homework
2} bonnie d. from the happy blog of bonnie in beantown
which, i might add is oh so convenient since i will be seeing her tonight!
3} "oh ceciiiiilllliiiaaa - you're breakin my heart, your shakin my confidence baby!" and i must say that with such a singable name like cecilia you deserve a cd of new music!
plus, although your suggestions were very worthy contenders, many of which brought back all manner of happy memories of my growing up years, they were all 80's and 90's-ish which indicates quite clearly that you are in need of some new music!


do not despair, for my heart is soft and my blank cds are aplenty
and i do believe i fall into the category of push over
so, congratulations also to:

laura from an ordinary mom because let's face it, she's no ordinary mom and well to be honest, it's her birthday on monday and this is what she asked for :) and who am i to deny such a noble request?

which also means my bro <R> will be enjoying this cd muy fabuloso because he is indeed married to (no) ordinary mom and i trust that she will be willing to share the wealth, verdad?

and last but surely not least, another of my favorite sisters-in-law *cori* from seven mccoys for several reasons but most of all because i owe her, for she made me this fantastic apron. a magical apron that whipped up pecan crusted pork chops, mashed potatoes, steamed carrots and corn bread all on it's own last night for dinner. yes, i do believe that she is worthy of a cd of new music, don't you agree?

so those are the least for now. being the push over that i am, you see, i'm sure if any of you non-winners really beg, or twist my arm, or send me flowers, or tell me how funny i am - you too will be the lucky recipient of the magnanimous new cd.

so here's the dealio - if you have my e-mail please e-mail me your address so i can get your cd to you toot sweet (that means "very fast" for you non-french speakers)

and, please be advised, that i will try to make the cd a good mix of all the fantastic suggestions that i got from all you fantastic people and i will TRY {but can not fully promise} to make sure that the cd i send you includes music that you did not suggest because that would defeat the purpose now wouldn't it?

but to all who contributed: THANK YOU! my week has been full of discovering new great music! i have over a hundred songs in my iTunes shopping cart that i need to choose from and i have several new pandora stations singing out with artists of your suggestions. and i encourage all of you to look through the suggestions the rest of you posted in the comments and spend the next ten hours iTuning everything. it's great! thanks for playing along and please join us again in the future for whatever else my attention-deficited mind comes up with!


Wednesday, January 07, 2009

* resolutionary challenge 2009 *

i don't know if you remember but i participated in a resolutionary challenge last year for three months. it was a challenge to implement ten healthy habits a day and accrue points for each habit accomplished each day. everyone puts $20 into the pot then the people with the most points at the end win the moolah. the habits were things like getting enough sleep, eating no treats, drinking lots of water, eating fruits and veggies, exercise, scripture reading, journal writing, you know - all that stuff that's on your list of resolutions also. it was pretty rigorous and since atticus was a newborn and nursing all night some of the goals were hard to accomplish each day. anyway - this year's challenge is a little different. it's a little less rigorous and in my opinion, more do-able and more realistic and probably more enjoyable. if you're interested in joining or you just want to check it out and get ideas for your own new year's goals HERE is the link. good luck!

also - i stumbled across THIS website yesterday and discovered that although i'm 30.3 years in age, my RealAge according to my health habits is 26.6 years! hooray for growing younger! i liked this site because it tailors it's info according to your specific needs and interests. so my page includes info on overcoming insomnia and headaches and other things i'm interested in. check it out if you're looking for a good source on healthy living.

and thank you to all who have made music suggestions on my previous post. i've been loving discovering all kinds of great music this week. i'll pick three winners tomorrow afternoon so be sure to check back and see if you're the lucky winner of a cd full of new music!


Sunday, January 04, 2009

leave a comment for a free music giveaway!!

i love that people do giveaways on their blogs and since darek and i are all about iTunes of late and are seeking all kinds of good new music to fill in the sad void left lingering now that the christmas music season has passed, we'd like your suggestions of music you think we can't live without! so please leave a comment listing one or two or whatever number of your favorite songs - all genres welcome - and then on thursday at noon i'll randomly pick a lucky winner (or maybe a few lucky winners!) from everyone that left a comment and i'll burn you a cd of all (or at least the best) songs suggested. how do you feel about that? do it! leave a comment! you're all invivted to my house for a dance party! woo hoo!

Friday, January 02, 2009

*H*a*Pp*y* ~ *ne*W* ~ *Ye*A*r*
a day late
i love celebrating the new year. not in the go out and party all night kind of way - as evidenced by our last minute decision to cancel our plans to head to new york for new year's eve because we are too old and tired and rickety to participate in such madness. instead we went to bed at NINE-THIRTY! nine thirty, people! how lame are we? perhaps i shouldn't have disclosed that detail. and to make matters worse we've stayed up past midnight for the last two weeks and we choose new year's eve to turn in early? anyway - as i was saying, i love the new year. i love new year's resolutions and setting goals and making plans and hoping for fun adventures in the new year and all that kind of cheesy stuff. unexpectedly, some unknown force of nature took us by storm this week and we've been cleaning and organizing our apartment like our lives depended on it. total cleaning hysteria, i tell you. there were purchases made of large storage containers the likes of which are now filled with all manner of christmas paraphernalia, blankets, sheets, clothes, shoes, odds, ends, thingamajigs and whatnots. all storage containers have been neatly stacked or stashed under the bed, in our closet, in the basement and everywhere orderly. plus a trip was made to the goodwill today to unburden ourselves of all things burdensome. so clean. so nice. such a great way to kick off the new year.
after cleaning and slaving all day with the normal stuff like laundry and such, i wanted to put one last blanket on the top shelf of our linen closet. i went into our bedroom closet to get the stool to stand on. when i saw the stool i remembered that i wanted to stack one last box on the top shelf of the bedroom closet. when i went to get that box off my dresser i remembered i wanted to clean out my sock drawer {which contained a frightening amount of non-sock items} to add to the box before putting it on the top shelf. when i started cleaning out my sock drawer i found a checkbook full of checks that i'm not using anymore that needed to be shredded. when i asked darek where i should put the checks so that we would remember to shred them i remembered that there were more checks in the kitchen junk drawer. when i went to find the checks in the junk drawer i realized that i should really to clean out the junk drawer as it was all amuck. as i started to clean out the junk drawer i found a broken magnet that i needed to glue back together before atticus found the broken piece and ingested it. when i went to find the superglue in the desk drawer i found a knob that came off atticus' puzzle piece that also needed to be glued back together before ingestation.
so i
glued on the knob,
organized the puzzles,
fixed the magnet,
added it to our stunning magnet collection that adorns our fridge,
cleaned out the junk drawer,
filed the papers in the "keep" pile from the junk drawer,
found a parking ticket from our last trip to new york
that still needs to be paid
but darek refuses to pay it,
shredded the checks,
cleaned out my sock drawer,
one third of the contents of my sock drawer to our goodwill pile,
one third to the box destined for the top shelf of the closet,
and folded the remaning third to be left in the drawer,
organized said box,
stacked it on the very top shelf of the bedroom closet,
retrieved the stool,
folded the quilt,
and finally
placed it
on the top shelf of our linen closet.
which was,
if you recall,
the original task.
this is the result of having a highly distractible mind. somewhere in all that cleaning frenzy i was also sidetracked into cleaning out both drawers of my bedside table but please don't ask me to recall how in the world my random chain of cleaning events led me to that side of the room. i can barely remember how old i am, much less what i did 9 hours ago.
and don't even get me started on all the darek cleaned and organized today. suffice it to say that it resulted in $35.06 worth of change that coinstar gobbled up when we went grocery shopping tonight.
anywho - needless to say our house is spic and span and i'm loving it! i know that all you former roommates of mine are wondering why in the world i didn't discover my neat-freaked-ness years ago when we trashed skyview 3 and shot bottle rockets into large crowds of people. i've often asked myself the same mystifying question. i'm pretty sure it has something to do with my new apron. it's mindboggling what a woman in an apron can accomplish.
happy new year
may it be merry
and bright
and spic
and span
and warmer than boston