April 30, 2012

Sleep War

Sometimes when other women talk about how much they love when their kids crawl into bed with them and snuggle up to them, and how they treasure those moments and the feel of those little bodies lovingly curled up next to them, it makes me feel like a Really. Lousy. Mom.

Terrible, in fact. Okay, worse then terrible.

Because I can't stand it when the kids crawl into bed with me! GAH HA ah-aaaarrrrrrgh....

I know, I know. You are sitting over there gasping in horror and wondering what kind of mom I am.

Well I'll tell what kind of mom I am. The kind of mom who wants to live to see the next day! The kind who wants all her body parts still tact when I gracefully swan dive out of bed in a haze of sleep deprived effort. The kind who wants to keep as much hair on her head as humanly possible. The kind who appreciates that her nose is somewhat straight and would rather not get it broken in the middle of the night.

I don't think I've ever had a kid crawl into bed with us and lovingly curl up into a slumber-filled snuggle. No no, kids in the bed means survival of the fittest.

It is all-out war.

Usually when Savannah crawls into our bed, I get a knee to the gut or a palm-smack to the face, not to mention she rolls over two hundred times an hour. Joseph usually kicks me in the back or clobbers my skull with his own. Jacob is more of a hands or feet tangled-in-the-hair kind of guy, but my face and back have also received love taps from his knuckles and feet. Once I woke to his toes poking my eyeballs. 

Just last night, it was Alayna who crawled into the bed. I made the mistake of rolling over onto my back. And twice, not once... twice I about had the wind knocked out of me as restless little legs came full force down into my stomach as she tried to kick the covers off of her. When you are relaxed enough to be sleeping and something unexpected like that happens, believe you me, it hurts.

So I sit here in total awe at the moms who gush about loving their sweet sleeping children all snuggled up into bed with them. I mean, how does that work for you? Straitjackets?

Maybe if I went to bed with a football helmet and pads, I'd love it too. In the meantime, I'll do my best to stay alive by carrying kids back to their own beds every night. 

'Cause in case you couldn't tell, they are capable of sleeping anywhere - in any position.

April 27, 2012

Showering is Dangerous

I finished my morning shower and got dressed. Twisting my wet hair up into a towel and securing it on top of my head I stepped out into the kitchen and froze, my jaw dropping open.

The towel may have unceremoniously dropped to the floor too, but I can't be sure. All I could see before me was a wide and vast sea of mess.

The paper drawer had been emptied, coating the floor in paper, scraps, and coloring books. On top of the papers and heavily sprinkled about lay waves and waves of markers, crayons, and yarn, all pulled from the kids art drawer.

A bag of bread was cast off into one corner, leaving a trail of half eaten pieces in it's wake. Baby snacks were crushed and strewn across the paper coated floor.

The small bib drawer was pulled open and the little cloth protectors were dangling and dripping from it. Hiding her face behind the open drawer stood a three-year old girl who had about six bibs attached around her neck.

Across the room the drawer that held things like sandwich bags and aluminum foil also lay wide open and half its contents sat on the floor beneath it. The cup and tupperware drawer had also been ravished and relieved of their contents.

In yet another corner my cook books and recipe cards had been dumped out, and in the middle sat one very happy almost one-year old.

The almost five-year old lay one top of the counter munching away at a piece of bread as though he were king of the world.

I took in the scene, then reminded myself to breathe.

Then I ....    *beeeeeeep* We're sorry, this program is temporarily out of service. It would appear a power surge temporarily shorted the circuits. Please wait while we fix the connection.*beeeeeeeeep* ....

Needless to say, it didn't take long for those kids to have it whipped back into shape.

The only thing is, I was so stunned I actually forgot to take a picture! And it takes a lot to shock me.

*hanging my head*

I'm losing my bloggy touch people.  I feel so ashamed.

Still, if anyone were to ask me what the heck I do all day, I may just take to strangling them.

Lovingly... of course.

April 25, 2012

Beware The Bloggy Curse

A few weeks ago I gave a little "blogging 101" presentation to a group of business women. It was a lot of fun and they were really nice.

When I asked how many of them had ever started up a blog, it surprised me that only one of them had and she admitted to never updating it.

Near the end I was asked how many readers I had. I admitted that according to my RSS feeds, there are well over four hundred people who subscribe to my blog. Although I tried to tell them that this was nothing in the bloggy world, especially since probably only half of those people actually READ my blog, they still managed to appear impressed, probably so they wouldn't hurt my feelings.

My friend who invited me to do this presentation said, "Wow! Can you imagine having four hundred people read everything about your life?"

Weirdly, that kind of stuck with me. That's what's so funny about blogging. It seems to give the appearance of knowing all about someones life and I think that's where all the silly 'comparing ourselves to others' comes in.

But really, we see what they want us to see, just like I tell you mere snippets of my day. A funny moment here, a crazy story there, a cute picture to send warm fuzzies and sparkly sprinkles your way.

I don't always write about the kid who wet the bed at 1am and I had to clean it up all alone because Hubby was out of town. Or when a child and I go twenty rounds because I was on the phone while they were trying to ask me a question about t-shirts, and I told them to wait a moment and they didn't want to, so they cry and wail at the top of their lungs. Or when I feel so frustrated I am barely holding it together so I run off to the laundry room to hide among the dirty clothes for a moment of peace. Or when the neighbor calls to ask if she can look at something in our basement and I calmly say sure, only to throw the phone down and fly around the house like a crazy person stuffing things here and hiding things there to give the fragile appearance of a decently clean house. Or that I dread dinner time because I don't feel like cooking since I am knee deep in craft projects. Or when the baby wakes up in the middle of the night screaming as though she were having a night terror and it takes me an hour to get her calmed down enough to fall back asleep. And so on and so forth.

So before you look at this picture and think, "Wow! I sure wish our bedtimes were that nice! She is so put together, I wish I was like that!" Let me assure, it was a mere drop in a sea of bad bedtime experiences.

Yes, it was fun and cute and heart warming and all that stuff, but it's certainly not always like that. Sometimes it's growling and crying and over reacting.

In a mom group I'm a member of on Facebook, a cute little mom admitted that she was horribly embarrassed when a new friend stopped by and caught her yelling at one of her kids. Fifteen comments later, all the other moms assured her that she was completely normal, that we all do it and have bad days, that they appreciated her making them feel normal, and how we need to get past this idea of giving off a false public perception.

I loved that.

Sure we don't run around telling people all about the inner struggles of our family, or air all our "dirty laundry" so to speak for all the world to see, as it should be. Some family and martial struggles are meant to stay private and within the walls of your own home. But it would also be a mistake to assume that what others show us is exactly how they are all the time.

So beware the curse of the blog and the often false public perception if gives. What you see is not always what you get. So don't feel bad that you didn't hand paint and distress all your own furniture, or invent the perfect family night.

Hey, I didn't either! We'll start a club.

Just keep plugging away, one day at a time.

NOTE: This blog was written for me. Because I found myself comparing me and what I do to what others were showing about themselves on their blogs.

I needed a mental slap to remind myself not to do that.

April 23, 2012

Wasps and Raspberries

I was weeding out the front flower beds this morning... that have yet to have any flowers planted in them, eh hem anyway, that's beside that point.

With flip flops on my feet and a shovel in my hand, I was whacking at those weeds with all my might so I could pull them out of the hard ground. I reached down at one point to grab a handful of weeds when a sharp pain penetrated the soft skin between my thumb and index finger.

Obviously surprised and in pain, I jerked my hand back while my other hand that was holding the shovel, involuntarily shoved it forward as I let go.

Poor Jacob who had been crouched down next to me had the unfortunate luck to have that shovel land right on his head. He looked so stunned for a moment then started to wail. I looked from my hand down to the weeds and saw that nasty wasp crawl out of his patch to gloat at me.

I took that shovel back in hand. He didn't gloat long.

Dag-nab-it I've forgotten how much those suckers hurt.

I made sure Jacob was okay then sprinted in the house to take care of my sting.

Not long after I was going at the weeds again, a blister broke out on my palm. At this point I was feeling rather irritated at my bad fortune this morning, so I decided to call it good.

Gathering up a big arm full of weeds, I started carrying it over to garbage can. Just as I was passing Claira, a rock feel off the pile and right onto her little head.

Curses. Poor thing was so shocked, and I am so done with those stinkin' weeds this morning.

Saturday Hubby took it in his head that we needed to clean out the garden area. Feeling rather shocked at his eagerness, I readily joined in. I thought for sure I'd be tilling the garden myself this year as Hubby seemed to have no interest in it. Guess I was wrong.

Just don't tell him I ever admitted to such a thing.

So Hubby cleaned out the garden and tilled the ground. When he was done I started going at the raspberries. They needed pruning badly and we decided that with so many starts, and despite our small garden space, we would make two rows of raspberries.

A few hours later....

You think I look bad, you should see the other guy!

The raspberries didn't stand a chance against my devastatingly muscular arms.

Especially if you read the post before this one, you'll understand.

Devastatingly muscular. Yup.

Try not to be too jealous.

Our garden is about ready to be planted! But there is a cold streak coming on at the end of the week so we're going to hold out a bit longer.

In the mean time, I'm wearing shorts today in honor of the 80 degree weather we should be having today and tomorrow.

Ah... bliss....

April 20, 2012


I was sitting on the couch downloading a preschool learning game on my kindle for Jacob when Alayna saunters up and stands next to me.

It didn't register right away what she was doing or saying, but then my mind zeroed into focus.

As her little hands squeezed my arm up and down, she kept repeating, "Squish, squish squish, squishy squish squish squish, squishy squishy......."

If you need me today, I'll be downstairs... doing girly push-ups for my apparently, really squishy arms.

And eating chocolate to nurse my bruised ego.

I'm all about being properly balanced like that.

April 18, 2012

Vitamin Sucker

Whenever I am pregnant, (and no, I am so not making an announcement) I get knocked flat on my face with morning sickness. The constant nausea can be brutal at times.

I have tried every trick in the book that is suppose to help, but to no avail.

One of said tricks some people swear by, is taking a vitamin B6 supplement. Tried it. Didn't work. Whatever.

It's kind of like trying to give up my chocoltae addiction. Tried it. Didn't work. Whatever.

Still, I have a big bottle of B6 sitting in my cupboard. After having a discussion with a few people on the benefits of B6, like increased blood flow to the brain and calmer nerves, I couldn't help but think this would be a great vitamin for my children to take, besides the kid ones they have!

I'm trying to draw attention away from the fact that I should probably be taking half a bottle a day. After five pregnancies, by nerves and brain need all the help they can get.

Work with me here, I grew with a super health conscious mom.

So, I started giving Savannah (age 7) and Joseph (Age 6) a little B6 vitamin before school in the mornings. They are small enough, and the kids are use to me giving them vitamins, so much so that they just kind of scrunch up their face, shrug their shoulder, and swallow it down.

Yesterday morning at breakfast, everyone was in unusually good mood, so when I brought out the vitamins, all four of the older kids wanted to try the B6, even Alayna (age 3). I handed them out and they all downed them with their juice.

Alayna took a little more effort but after some whining and grossed out face making, and with all the other kids cheering her on, she swallowed it down and beamed with pride.

You'd think she had just won the Nobel peace prize or something.

Anyway, since everyone seemed to be in a good and daring mood, I brought out the vitamins that hubby and I take.

"Oh yea? Well who wants to try and swallow and big mommy vitamin?" I taunted.

The "we are cool" feeling was still lingering so they all wanted to. I only gave them to the three older ones and Savannah downed hers with her juice like a pro, then smugly told the others that it was easy and you couldn't even taste it.

Joseph then popped his in and managed to swallow his down without much drama.

While all this was going on, I noticed that Jacob (age almost 5) had his head down, resting in between his hands.

Soon all attention was focused on him as all the kids were pounding the table with their hands chanting, "Jacob! Jacob! Jacob!"

Some people have drinking dares, we apparently have vitamin dares.

I think our game is way cooler, just sayin'.

When he didn't look up I asked him if he was okay. Slowly he raised his head and looked at me. The expression on his face was a weird mix between looking like he was going to puke, like he was sucking on a lemon, and like he had just seen a horror film.

It took me a minute to register what was going on.

"Jacob?" Are you... sucking on that vitamin?" Tears welled up in his eyes and he nodded.

Ack! I'm... *gag* I'm even feeling all nauseous as I'm writing this, thinking about how totally disgusting that must have tasted.

He spit it out into his hands as I eww-ed and gross-ed and, you're not suppose to suck on them, at him.

Savannah took charge, being that she is so old and mature and knows everything now *insert eye roll* went over and encouraged him to swallow it down with his juice.

To my great surprise, he did! We all cheered and he looked so proud of his great accomplishment, even laughed when we all congratulated him.

*shuddering off the heeby jeebies* Yuck, vitamins taste gross, and as much as I love mine, you couldn't pay me enough to suck on one. Bleh!

This morning, just for fun, I asked if anyone wanted another mommy vitamin thinking they would never go for it. Savannah proudly said yes! Joseph took Savannah's cue and okay-ed.

Jacob looked down-right worried for a minute before he broke out a huge smiled and vigorously nodded his head.

"Oh ya?" I said disbelieving, "And do you think they taste good?"

Jacob threw out a big "Yes!"


I will never understand kids. Because right now, I feel all... *gag* grossed out again. *shudder*

Quick! Pass me a chocolate bar....

April 16, 2012


Alayna runs over to me laughing hysterically. "Look mommy! I have bread in my boogers!"

Sure enough, sticking out of her nostrils were little pieces of bread.

I was torn between feeling horrified and laughing out loud.

In the end I'm pretty sure my reaction came out as a wide-eyed, choking bark.

I think I'm going to start adding, "... and please, please, please, please help my children grow up to be normal." to my prayers every night.

April 15, 2012

Easter Weekend - Part 2

We had the guys hide the Easter eggs Saturday afternoon. I later decided it had been a really bad idea once the kids started discovering empty eggs. *insert evil stinky eye here*

Hey, at least when I steal candy from little kids, I have the decency to cover my tracks by spreading the other candy out so it simply appears that the containers aren't stuffed to maximum capacity.

You can tell I write a blog post late at night when I start using phrases like "maximum capacity" to explain how much candy is in an Easter egg.

Anyway, the kids were all excited about the hunt, especially the big kids. Ahem... Abe.

Oh dear... *gasp* do you see that? Do you!? I think my brother's mannerisms have rubbed off onto my boys! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.....................

On your mark... get set... GO! 

I think all 96 eggs were snatched up in under five minutes. I think it took so long because there were so many little kiddos. At least fighting over eggs was at a bare minimum.

It only got ugly when the big kids started fighting over them. Awwwkwaaarrddd....

Okay not really. It was a big ole' snowball fight that broke out with all the hard crusted snow left in the shadowy spots behind the house.

Poor Angel (yes, that really is my sister's name), I think they were trying to shove it down her pants.

Have I mentioned lately how mature and sophisticated we all are?

Just checking.

Even my little twiner nieces had a blast.

Those girls know how to work the system around here! But sadly they've all gone and abandoned me by moving away, so how will I ever teach them how to handle their daddy? Or tell all his embarrassing life stories like every big sister is suppose to do for her little brother?

Ah well, I suspect those girls will be alright

Well, maybe anyway..... Stay strong girls! Stay strong!

All in all, I think the kids had a blast!

Soon, all us responsible adults wrestled the candy baskets away from terrified-that-they'll-never-see-their-candy-again grasps. I mean honestly, you'd think they were afraid I was going to eat it all!

Pish, give me some credit! I'd save them some-ish... a little bit anyway. Hey, I'm simply looking out for them, that's all! Motherly love and all that. *clearing throat...* What!?

Anyhow, after we ate a fabulous dinner and did some socializing, our lovely company whittled down to just the family members who were staying at our house.

The next morning, being Easter Sunday, was kind of a crazy who-gets-the-shower-first-before-all-the-hot-water-is-gone sort of morning. Luckily church started late enough so I think we were good. Soon the girls we're flaunting poofy dresses and the air smelled of mouse and hairspray.

Okay okay, "flaunting" wouldn't be the right word for miss sass-a-frass here who didn't even want to wear her dress in the first place.

At least Lilli know hows to flaunt.

Claira got tired of flaunting and settled for staring.

While the girls were flaunting the boys were, well, you know. Doing all that important stuff guys like to do.

The girls had other plans.

We all tried taking family Easter pictures but, you know how that can go.

You probably didn't believe me when I said it took us twenty pictures to get the one I posted on Monday.

Well, here ya go. Proof.

We even tried to take pictures of all the present cousins/grand kids.

Check out Jacob's face. Wait for it...

Wait for it...

And... mean auntie Becka took away all his blankets. Ruthless I tell ya.

And there you have it, our Easter in an egg shell. (I know, I thought it was clever too)

I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

The End.

April 13, 2012

Easter Weekend - Part 1

Since the demise of my beloved iMac, which took my favored photoshop program down with it, editing photos has become a real chore. Dang windows programs.

So forgive the late posting.

As mentioned on Monday, we had quite a few family members and in-law family members join us. My brother Abe happened to be graduating from college and since it lined up with Easter weekend, my parents came down to see him walk and celebrate the holiday with all of us.

Oh, and Abe and Annie are moving down to Salt Lake, abandoning me. That was the other reason.

And since my parents were coming, my two younger sisters decided to come join us as well, who will both be moving far away within the next six months and abondoning me too.

Not that I'm hurt, crushed, and devestated over it... really! I didn't effect my mood at all. I love having my family in town!

The thing is, my family gets along really, really well.

We are all quite mature and sophisticated.

Even the kids are on their best behavior and don't pull crazy stunts.

My children personally set the example for good behavior and manners.

But despite our calm and mature personalities, we do know how to have fun and there is never a dull moment.

Luckily, we all get along with each other's spouses,

and we respect bounderies in matters of personal conduct.

I personally make an effort as hostess to make everyone feel welcome and wanted.

My nieces and nephews LOVE me! I have a gift for making them smile.

We always make sure our children are involved in age appropriate activities of the highest caliber.

We may not enjoy food very much,

or go through lengths to ensure there's enough for everyone,

but what's that compared to knowing our family values privacy above all else?

But since none of us look-a-like we're always having to tell people we're related, especially my sisters. (who are moving away and abandoning me) For some reason, no one can see the resemblance! Weird.

Oh well. At least I'm told quite often that Claira and I look exactly like each other. I've even been asked if she's my little clone!

It's nice to know what I'll look like if I'm bald.

So yea, just your average, everyday kind of family! (who are all moving away and abandoning me, not that I'm having issues with that... clearly)

Just wait until I tell you about our easter egg hunt....

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