Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Beauty Tips

I wanted to share this with my niece, Angee, and when I read it again, I still love it so much I wanted to share it will all of you:

For attractive lips, speak words of kindness.

For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people.

For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry.

For beautiful hair, let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day.

For poise, walk with the knowledge you'll never walk alone.

People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; Never throw out anybody.

Remember, If you ever need a helping hand, you'll find one at the end of your arm.

As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.

The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.

The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole, but true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows, and the beauty of a woman with passing years only grows!

Sam Levenson

Posted October 1999

Contrary to what some may think, Audrey Hepburn did not write this beautiful poem, Sam Levenson did. Levenson wrote "Time Tested Beauty Tips" for his grandchild, and it just so happened to be one of Audrey's favorite poems. She read it to her children on the very last Christmas Eve she spent with us here on Earth.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Time to purge or "I wanna be sedated" or Where's Sigmund Freud when I need him?

My brain is so full... I can never get rid of enough craziness running around in it. I can't focus anymore. My brain is full to the absolute brim. I need to purge. I need room to think about good stuff. Important stuff. Necessary stuff. Fixable stuff.

I don't think anyone cares to know or wants to hear all of the JUNK in my head, but it needs to come out.

1. I am so sad about our cat, Pippin. In a nutshell, he's not here anymore. He was being so mean to Caspian and Noira we took him away. We weren't sure what to do. Long story :( How do you choose one cat over the other? My kids, especially the girls, are SAD. I am one of those girls too. I wish we could have all of "our" cats, including Carmel and Oscar. Who, you say? But that would involve some backstory. In the words of Flynn Rider, "Sorry, Blondie. I don't do backstory!" Well, at least not today.

2. I am convinced that my house will magically be "CLEAN" when Beck is approximately 6 years old. Melted popsicles, mud, cereal, legos, paper scraps, bugs, grass, clothes, crayons, pee (yes, pee!), etc. How can you possibly enjoy that? I love HIM, just not his messes. I'm just so tired all the time. See #4.

3. I am completely blown away by the behavior of some "adults" I have witnessed over the past two days. BLOWN AWAY. Wow. Where are your manners? Are manners important? Am I just a hypocrite for complaining about it? Probably.

4. I have been having the most extremely upsetting, vividly realistic dreams and nightmares for the past month or so. My husband thinks it's funny. He thinks I should write them down and use them for a book. Believe me, I could. But I'm not sleeping well and my mind, heart, and body are truly experiencing all of these emotions so I wake up very upset and exhausted. I'm waking up all through the night and when the alarm goes off it takes me a good five minutes to convince myself that none of the nightmares really happened.

Anyone out there ever had recurring intense nightmares before? They're not the same story every night, so I guess I mean recurring in the fact that every night I have a nightmare. Sometimes they aren't about anything even going on in my life -- where are they coming from? But there is a common theme: there is a very stressful, often life-threatening situation and I'm supposed to get out of it or fix it or save people. Every time I fail. Last night I didn't. That was the first time. I woke up very exhausted and freaked out, but happy, because I "saved the day". Hmm... I wonder what I'll dream about tonight?

In no particular order and in no great detail, here's just a sampling of my nightmares: my Dad, my husband, my kids, people in my ward, getting in a car accident with my friend, Kree, doing daycare in a restaurant where the walls rotate, trying to get out of a car that is underwater, trying to get out of my house that is on fire and trying to get someone to believe me and help me call the fire department, people making me have my picture taken with my head and arms locked in one of those wooden things (? I can't think of the name), Kevin Bacon, being in middle school and trying to find a babysitter for my kids, so I can go to class and then fly (really fly) home and get back to cheer-leading practice and make dinner before the football game, trying to fly away from the "bad guys" while holding all four of my kids, my Mom and Zeke being insanely furious with me for not agreeing to watch some kids in our ward in the middle of the night, helping my friend, Ruth, reunite two ghosts living in our apartments that were trying to kill us until we figured out what they wanted (oh my, that was last night, it's still freaking me out), Zeke leaving me, my Dad dying, Zeke leaving me, my Mom dying, Me leaving Zeke, Me dying, Zeke dying, my kids dying, Zeke leaving me, my Mom being mad at me, not being able to find our house, and of course, the classic, being naked in public (I was at the grocery store and every time I would try to cover myself with something it would disappear -- this might seem funny, but people had called the police and were going to take my children away from me) Okay, are you scared yet? Of me, at least, right?!

My nightmares don't make ANY sense, but they are driving me CRAZY. Or? Am I already CRAZY and my brain is just churning and twisting all night long trying to sort through my issues? Really, guys, I think I might be crazy.

5. Do you ever have a terrible suspicion that someone doesn't like you? Someone you like. Someone you REALLY like. Someone that matters. You can just FEEL that everything you do and say is annoying the HECK out of them? And then you suddenly realize it's true and you feel like a total nub? :(

6. I am really stressing about something. I don't want to blog about it yet... I have a really hard time leaving my children. I have extreme GUILT. Guilt about doing something for me, guilt about spending money, guilt about being okay and getting to do stuff, guilt about my sister... I'm sure none of this makes sense to most of you. Sorry. Blah. I'll let you know how it all goes next week. I don't want to put stuff on my blog that is scheduled to happen and you know what a paranoid freak I am. I don't want people to know where I'm at (or not) and when. I hate having choices sometimes. I make dumb choices sometimes. Too often lately.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

WAY better than Disneyland

Lacy, you just took your youngest child to preschool for the next 3 hours,
what are you going to do next?!
"I'm going to the temple!"

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Real Deal

I woke up in a funk the other morning. Around 4am I had a nightmare about my Dad... I just couldn't seem to shake it all day long.

Things got to me all day, that feeling again like I don't fit in, I'm a terrible mother, a terrible person, a failure.
Life is too hard, things are too sad and scary and HARD.

Did I mention that life is hard?

Stressed, anxious, depressed, scared.

I just wanted to be home with my kids.

I came home and read some scriptures, helped fix some of the girl's Polly Pocket dresses (no small task), helped Beck make a track for his car, moved all the pictures around on my wall and added some more, made dinner, just going through the motions really. I just felt sad and lost today.

Zeke came home tired and stressed too. We couldn't wait to get the kids to bed. I came downstairs to find Zoe starting the movie, "The Other Side of Heaven". I love this movie. I love the Tongan people (and I love Anne Hathaway). Most of all, I love the message. I felt the Spirit so strongly.
My heart needed it.

I couldn't find the exact quote, but I love the part after the storm and they all make it to shore and one of them says sometimes the Lord calms the storm and sometimes He calms the sailor. I've heard that many times before, but then Elder Groberg says, "and sometimes He just lets us swim." Isn't it true? I know that God loves us and helps us, but sometimes I think we have to work things out ourselves so we can learn and grow and exercise our faith.

My favorite quote that brought me peace, "There is a connection between heaven and earth. Finding that connection gives meaning to everything, including death. Losing that connection makes everything lose meaning, including life."

I am convinced the only thing in this world that brings any peace to my troubled heart is The Gospel of Jesus Christ. I feel better because of the truths I was reminded of that give me hope for a better day and faith in an eternal family. It's the real deal!

I invite all of you, especially those members of my family who don't have this peace in their lives, to come unto Christ. ALL of you.
Pray to know if this Gospel is true.
I know that I haven't been the best example every moment of my life, but I know this church is true and I am forever grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ that makes it possible for me and for everyone to repent of their mistakes and try to become a better person each day. A change of heart. We have the opportunity to be Eternal Families and live again with our Father in Heaven in peace and love because of His Son.
"I tremble to know that for me He was crucified.
That for me, a sinner, He suffered, He bled, and died..."
("I Stand All Amazed", Hymns #193)

Monday, August 15, 2011

THIS is the definition of Insanity

"The definition of Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result." ~ Albert Einstein

I can't believe how often this quote applies to my life. When I finally wake up and realize what I'm doing -- this quote always comes to mind.

Thanks, Gabe, for letting me use your AWESOME gorilla skull on my blog
(I think it would make a cool T-shirt):
I was whining to Zeke this morning (Wednesday after my last post) about how hard it is and how stressed I am, how messy the house is and how grumpy we all are and sick of each other. DUH!

Kids eating breakfast hours apart, sleeping in until 10 or 11, friends coming and going, insanely stressful dinner making times, "the witching hours" as my friend Stephanie calls it. She talked about quiet/play in your room time right before dinner when they're hungry, tired, and excited for Dad to get home. GENIUS. She also told me to spend more one on one time with each child. INSPIRED. Hard to do, but VERY important.

Today I changed, made a schedule, not just in my head, but on paper on the fridge and went through it with each child and well, tried to follow it --aaaaah. So much better! Another quote I need to practice more often, "If you don't write it down, it's simply a wish."
Not every member of the household was pleased with the "SCHEDULE" (i.e. Gabe), but I think they'll figure out soon enough, "If momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!" There HAS to be some structure even to summer. June was so crazy and July was so busy. Better late than never, right?

We've done a lot of cool things -- swim lessons, play group, afternoon at the county fair, late nights with friends, summer reading program, cooking together, yard work, sewing, etc, but it's all been "roly-poly, pell-mell tumble-bumble" and I end up at the bottom of the hill in a big heap.
Now that there's only 2 weeks left, I've got it all figured out... for NEXT YEAR! Bring on the Strawberry Shortcake! :) 10 pts. to the first person who can identify one of our favorite books I'm quoting. Oh, and here's the guardian of our front porch (Thank, Caspian):
Is he cute or what?
(Dedra and Tawnya don't need to answer this, but I love you anyway :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

How many Chips Ahoy cookies can you eat in one sitting?

Tonight I am tired, but Zeke is working late and the kids are in bed. Lots of rambling will inevitably follow... you have been warned!

Well, I'm feeling very random this week. I'm looking at the calendar and summer is almost over. Part of me is happy -- I'm ready for more structure and routine and not so much craziness 24/7 with the kids. (Yes, I'm one of THOSE Moms, start your eye-rolling and tsk-tsk-ing now if you must... whatever!) Part of me is sad too, because I don't feel like we've had enough time (or money) to do all of the things I wanted to.

Summer has been a whirlwind of running from here to there and staying home just long enough to play catch-up on the housekeeping (and just barely at that).

I haven't felt very good this week. Mostly today. My loveliest of lovely friends, Tawnya, brought me some back up: Chips Ahoy cookies and Tim's Sour Cream and Onion Potato chips. Yes, for the record they were absolutely divine! Crunchy, chocolatey, salty, sugary goodness. How did you know I love each of these? Thank you! I think I ate 7 or 8 cookies for lunch (yes, for lunch). Then, I had a couple more when I was fixing dinner. Today was a day I needed some comfort food. Tawnya is SO wonderful. I hugged her even though she's not a hugger. Sorry, Tawnya, I just had to! I tried not to break down crying when I opened the door to see my dear friend. I feel like such a baby lately.
Beautiful, aren't they?

Yesterday wasn't exactly my favorite day. Not the worst by any means, but not my favorite. I almost hit a car as I was merging over into the right lane. Zeke says they were in my "blind spot" and they were too close, but it was SO close. It really threw me off. It scared the ba-jeebers out of me and as we pulled into the gas station, I just started crying. Crying because I'm tired, crying because I was scared, crying because I'm frustrated, crying because I'm sick of paying doctor bills (nearly $500 a month!), crying because I don't know why (I realized today that my hormones are out of whack like they always seem to be every couple weeks).

I'm feeling so down on our financial situation. I'm not feeling as optimistic as I was last year at all. I was reading through last summer's posts and I was a nut! I didn't care if we had $5 to our name and last year, we didn't! I was living on faith and just going with the flow and things were taken care of. This year, Zeke has a new job (a better paying job I might add), but the expenses just keep rolling in. I guess I need to recognize that at least we have enough to pay our bills. I am proud to say we are still not incurring any more debt (other than doctor bills, but who has a few thousand dollars just sitting around not earmarked for something else?) Someday we will, but today is not that day. It's like one step forward and ten steps back.

I've also felt a bit somber this last week. My great uncle Nyals passed away. Then, Norma, one of the sweetest older ladies in my parents ward passed away. These deaths came as "blessings" so to speak. Both of them were very old and their poor bodies were just worn out. To top it off, an older sister of one of my neighborhood friends was brutally shot to death right in front of her own son. She was only 39 years old. Life is short. I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I hope I can become better and better each day so I am ready to meet God when it's my turn to go. Not that I want to go anytime soon. I'm just feeling rather reflective and thankful for Nyals and Norma, but really sad for Tina and her family. I wonder what my kids would say at my funeral? She was tired all the time and cried a lot. Gosh, I hope not! I feel like I'm not living up to my potential each day.

I find myself not accomplishing much these past few weeks. That really bums me out. I look at my house and I just feel more tired. I don't know where to start. When I do, a fight ensues somewhere on another floor of the house. It usually involves Beck and whoever. He is at that age where he's trying to figure out his place in the pecking order so to speak. He wants to be big and do everything the big kids do, but he can't and he knows it, but does it anyway. He spills food every meal, everyday. It's not my favorite thing. He will NOT allow us to sit and watch (and actually hear) a movie. He just can't sit still for that long, even if it's one of HIS movies. Oh, and after a bout of stomach flu, Beck has fallen off the potty-training wagon. Or is he back on? I'm just worn out.

Yesterday, he was sitting at the table coloring and swinging his legs and singing to a made-up tune, "I love my Mommy, she's so cute!" And I proceeded to completely melt right there on the kitchen floor. I wrapped him up in my arms and started crying. (I'm always crying lately)

Why are the hardest things in our lives some of the best things?

Zeke and Gabe made it home safely from Scout Camp on Saturday and I am so grateful. I was missing Gabe SO bad last week. The day before he left I absolutely could not wait for him to go. (Sorry, Gabe!) The incessant teasing, fighting over computer turns, arguments over curfew and chores, and the extremely loveable, somewhat annoying, but ever constant: "Mom, guess what? I'm taller than you!" By Tuesday, I was being a baby, crying some more and wishing I could hear him tell me again that he's taller than me.

Then, last night I watched "Soul Surfer" with Zoe, Kaia, and Zeke. Now, it's not one of the best movies ever made, but the story is really good. The girls loved it, especially Zoe. Even though it's rated PG, Kaia was more than a little freaked out by the shark attack scene. She was up well past midnight crying that she wants to keep all of her arms and legs and NEVER go in the ocean. Oh dear. I must admit I found myself thinking the same thing and even woke up last night from a nightmare about it. (I'm almost 37, by the way. Yeah.)

This girl is AMAZING. Her name is Bethany Hamilton. I love movies and books based on true stories. It had a great message, but I found myself being a little negative about it and then mad at myself because I was. Her family lives in Hawaii and they surf. A LOT. In fact, that's ALL they did. Oh, and they went to church a few times. And surfed and surfed and surfed some more.

My dear husband of 15 years leans over (just as my mind was forming the exact same thought) and says, "What does her parents DO for a living?" "How can they have that much money to live in Hawaii and basically play all day?" I know movies don't show everything, but it seemed to be more than a little vague in that part of the story, if not completely absent. Just wondering.

Okay, so today my kids had to watch the movie 4 MORE TIMES! We got our dollars worth at the Redbox this time! Kaia says, "You know Mom, this movie has really taught me that I should believe in myself and I can do anything I want if I try hard enough!" (She's seven, by the way) Then, she says, "I've decided I want to be a surfer more than anything, but well, since I'm afraid of sharks (no, really?) and since we don't live near an ocean (good point), I'm going to go outside and climb a tree. A really big one." I love what she comes up with. Her take on this movie just made me smile.

Zoe and Kaia have talked about Bethany Hamilton ALL day! I think they'll talk about her for some time to come. Today, they tucked one of their arms in their shirts and were even pretending they only had one arm, just like Bethany. I hope they always remember her story and really believe they can do anything they want to. Well, as long as it doesn't involve oceans. Just kidding. Not really.

I went to the Relief Society Activity for our ward tonight. It was about Education. I was thinking, "Okay, whatever, it's not my time yet." But it was REALLY good. I'll have about 5 hours of "free time" each week during the school year when Beck is in preschool and the older kids are at school. I've been planning to go to the temple one of the days and the other is a free day to do errands, house projects, etc. Just for me. I've waited over 13 years for this. I hope I didn't jinx it. Anyway, one of the speakers talked about the Cache Valley Volunteer Center and I got so excited about it! I'm going to check into it and volunteer a couple days a month. I would like to volunteer at the Literacy Center or the Humane Society.

Anyway, there is no point to this post. I just have so much in my head and it feels good to get some of it out. So I ate about 10 cookies today -- and I didn't get sick at all. Yay, KEFIR! I would be eating more right now, but when I got home from the Relief Society Activity they were ALL GONE. Gabe found them. End of story.

Friday, August 5, 2011

No more PRIVACY!

So I finally got to meet my friend, Dedra! She and her children and her sister, Gina, stopped by on their way through Utah. We had a great time!! :)
She fixed my necklace and made a keychain for Kaia with the leftover beads :)
And we had to try on Beck's goggles just because:
Here's Gina: she made breakfast!
Yeah, it's me:
I am so excited to tell all of you that her blog is not private anymore! Go see! She's funny and way groovy and she ALWAYS makes me laugh.
Bless her heart! (Just kidding, Dedra!)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Dying to tie-dye

My kids have been BEGGING me to make tie-dye some T-shirts for FOREVER. Last Saturday was the first Saturday we've been home in FOREVER. This was it! I got a kit from Wal-Mart ($20):
It was really fun and easy. We also got most of our shirts at the D.I. (thrift store) for $1 each. Yeah! After getting all the shirts damp (I just ran them through a rinse/spin cycle in the washer), we got to wrap them all up and "tie" them with elastic bands according to the pattern we wanted. The kit came with some great ideas and instructions.
I would recommend doing the dyeing part OUTSIDE!

Ziploc baggies came in handy to store the shirts once they had been dyed so they wouldn't bleed onto anything else.
After letting them sit for 8 hours, I washed them according to the directions in the kit. Next time, I think I will let them sit longer for even brighter colors. They faded quite a bit. We wanted to get them done so Gabe could take some to Scout camp. Here we are:
Do we look tired? We are, we stayed up past midnight on Saturday rinsing them all out and getting them in the washer...

As soon as we got home from church on Sunday, we all put on one of our shirts. I decided Caspian needed one too.
Poor cat, he was in the right place at the wrong time...
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