Friday, December 30, 2005

Looking back...

Okay, so I've been reading a lot of other blogs today and figure I needed to make an entry myself. I knew it would be slow today, almost half the department took the day off, this afternoon will be even worse. It's only 10:47 and I'm very, very bored. My brother and a lot of other people reading this may say that it's cause I am a state worker, aka cardboard cutout, but it's not usually like this. I know my job title sounds very prestigous and I actually know a lot more than you may think, but since this consolidation the duties are not finalized between everyone yet. So add that to the fact that it's a slow time of the year, I haven't got anything to keep me busy except IM'ing with my sister, blogging, and the food that's leftover from the festivities (I sure don't need more of that). Why didn't I take the day off I tell myself? Cause I'm stupid. I could be at home playing the "chase the naked baby around the house" game right now. (Savannah thinks it's a game to get out of the tub and have me chase her to put her diaper on! She just loves the fact that I need to catch her before she piddles on the floor so it's become a game to her!) I could also be cleaning my house and taking our tree down or watching daytime television. But I chose to come here. I guess with a new boss I've kind of set a standard for myself to not miss any work unless I absolutely needed it. (I really want to be able to say to someone that I have to use or lose my vacation within the next couple of years!)

But enough about that boring stuff! I've got an idea from you fellow blog members to reminisce about the top ten or so things that happened for me and my family in 2005. I think it's a good way to sum up some of life's milestone events. So let's see, in 2005...

1. Savannah turned 1 and accomplished all the normal baby milestones for her age (she still has yet to talk in sentences though...oh and she's back on the binkie for bedtime BTW)
2. Michael turned 16 (still no license, but has brought up his grades for two semesters now! - in case you didn't know that was part of the deal before he can get his license)
3. We got a pet dog
4. We put our lawn and sprinkler system in!
5. I work in a new office
6. No one died in my family this year
7. Michael got his wisdom teeth pulled
8. My little brother had another baby in July
9. Michael worked on a farm for the summer
10. I was awarded 5 years of service through the State of Utah
11. I got my first speeding ticket
12. We refinanced our house

That sums up some things for now. I'm sure I'll think of more as time goes by.

Monday, December 26, 2005

After all is said and done...

I look back on our holiday weekend and, well, everything went as planned and the kids were very excited. It was a wonderful Christmas this year. Mom's party was fun too. We played the gift trading game and no one wanted to trade which is very unusual. We also had white elephants and visted my Dad and Grandparent's at the gravesite. It was a beautiful day to do so and even though I know mom wasn't up for company, I think it makes her feel better at least while we're there. (I hope) I usually get very depressed after Christmas is over, but it seems to not be so bad this year. All I have to do is look at our photos and they bring smiles to my face. See for yourself! Anyway, not going to spend much more time on the PC, I've got legos and dolly's to play with!

Monday, December 19, 2005

It's just my preference

I've been listening to the free radio on MSN today at work where they play a variety of music and I swear I hit the button that was not "country" style Christmas music, but some song by the Dixie Chicks that is supposed to be Christmas themed came on anyway. I'm sorry but I hate country versions of Christmas music. (That's probably cause I don't like country music anymore - yes I once did, back in the early 90's.) So no offense to you all that do, but I just like the traditional ones that really feel like Christmas. Just had to get that off my chest...

Sunday, December 18, 2005

It's getting close!

Christmas is almost here, can you believe it? As I've been wrapping and buying the last of our gifts this weekend it makes me so excited. I know Christmas isn't about gifts but it seems to put me in the spirit. And the snow! Last night it snowed and was so beautiful and white....dang, I should have taken a picture. Anyway, I'm excited and I think the kids will be very excited this year too!

Friday, December 16, 2005

I am bored again

As my blog's tagline says, "When in boredome, blog something!" so here I am. No need to rant and rave about why I'm bored and the current situation about my work's lack of job duties. I'll just dive right into this.

So I have a lot of thoughts running through my mind this morning. Here are the current top ten:

1. I wonder what my mom and sisters are doing right this minute. I hope they are warm in the sunny air out there on their cruise and are relaxing, Lord knows all four of them need it.

2. I wonder if we are being too mean to encourage the boys to keep their grades at a C average or some of their Christmas presents will be at stake.

3. I wonder if I'll get used to this new theme on my blog. I've had the other since the inception of my creation.

4. I think I'm finally getting excited for Christmas. Why is it that gift giving (buying and wrapping gifts) puts me in the mood more than anything? Ah, I suppose...we haven't had our family party yet so that is another thing that usually helps.

5. I wonder when the mail will get here so I can maybe have something to do.

6. I think I'm so bored I want to instant message old friends that aren't really my friends any more just because they are online and my real friends aren't.

7. I'm getting really hungry.

8. I'm really, really, bored.

9. I wonder how long it will take Savannah to finally be rid of the beloved binkie. (We are working with her right now on not using it. She has been using it only for bedtime these last few months, but now it's time to break the habit so we can go on forward with potty training. I don't want to let her grow up!!!)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Go figure once again!

Let me tell you another quick story about Savannah and her playing with my wallet. If you read this blog on a regular basis, you would know that last week she lost my wallet the same day I got pulled over for my very first speeding ticket. Well this time she was playing with my wallet, she took my debit card and put it in a pocket I never use nor knew even existed! I've been without it for a week - searching high and low for it, calling the grocery store countless times just knowing they were hiding it from me, and finally today I decided to declare it lost and request a new one to replace it. in the meantime my account can't be accessed online nor can my husband or I use our ATM cards as they will be issuing new ones. And of course I found it just 5 minutes ago after catching that little bugger playing with my wallet again! All that trouble and go figure once always find what you are looking for when you are not looking. I need to start keeping my purse up!!!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Am I a whimp or what?

So my mom and my three sisters are probably in Mazatlan sipping on the good stuff aboard their cruise right now while I'm tending to laundry and a sleeping pill hangover from last night. My mom invited all the daughters on a cruise as our Christmas gift but I knew I wouldn't want to leave Savannah for a week without any contact so I stayed behind. All their kids are grown up and well over 10 now so no biggee to them to get away. Anyway, I can't wait to hear their adventures and see their pictures when they come home.

Friday, December 09, 2005

I miss my Grandma

As I hear the old time Christmas music I miss my Grandma Johnson and am sad to be reminded that I'm no longer a kid. My missing her always starts with Halloween and ends through Christmas. I miss her all the time but the seasons of fall and winter I miss her the most. I hope she knows I am missing her and I hope she knows that I feel bad I didn't spend more time with her when I should have. I was always so bashful as a kid I never talked to her or got to know her then and when I was grown up I never made the time to see her as often as I could have. Why is it that I think of her more now than when she was here just two cities away for me to visit? She could have used the company too, she was so lonely that she even called me once to see if I still had her Titanic movie I borrowed and returned the week before just as a means to have a reason to call and strike up a conversation. So I feel guilty that I miss her now. She was a perfect person in my mind and I think I felt awkward being around her cause of all the things I did or didn't do in my life. She is an angel and I miss her. If you could see all the wonderful things she made with her hands for each of her kids, grand kids, and great grand kids you would be astonished! Afghans, quilts, dresses, Barbie clothes, ceramics, cross-stitch, you name it! I wish I would have kept those things she made from when I was little. At least I still have my afghan and dish towels she hand crafted. Those things are and will always be irreplaceable. Christmas when I was little was so magical and she made it that much more special. What's even more magical is something that happened after my Grandpa passed on seven months after my Grandma did. My aunt had called us grandkids up to let everyone know they were free to look in the house to see if there was anything we wanted to keep. I had my eye on something back when Grandma and Grandpa were still alive so naturally I would look for it. You see, Grandma had started putting grandkid's names on different knick knacks of hers in the later years as she had them in mind for when she passed on for them to keep to remember her. I knew she hadn't picked anything out for me yet and so every time I went over to visit them I would look at the little stuffed Bambi on on the shelf amongst the hundreds of other things she had and tought to myself, "I wonder if Grandma would mind me asking for that." I only wanted it cause it always made me think of her. I don't know if it's because her name was Fawn or if just watching the old movie with the old music reminded me of her or what, but I never got up the nerve to ask and just kept checking back when visiting to see if it was still in its place. So after Grandpa died, I was rummaging through the pile that was left on the floor of their living room to see if anything caught my attention that I would want to keep that would remind me of them. (I couldn't believe that someone just threw everything off the shelves and dumped it on the floor!) After a while I found on the very bottom the little stuffed Bambi. I was so excited, I thought, "Wow, no one wanted her stuffed Disney characters?" (She had ALL of them!) But then I looked around at the pile and actually they were all gone except for that Bambi. I knew right then and there someone had listened to my wish and now I have the Bambi adding to the magic she created holding my her memory of her dear to my heart - thoughtful, loving, and always unselfish.

One of the best pics of my Grandma's smile!

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

She did it!

Savannah went potty in her training toilet for the very first time!!!! YAY! She is constantly surprising me every day now. The other day she said, "Brush teeth," and she carried on a baby-talk conversation with me on the phone when we were stuck in the snowy traffic for 2 hours last night. Only one problem lately. She has been obsessed with jumping. She can't fully do it on her own yet, so she requires assistance. Talk about wearing me out! I finally took some online advice and let her use the cushion to the couch for practice and it works very well. Anyway, I just had to share this milestone with you all before I get to my check book.

I got my weekly coupon from Osh Kosh in my email this morning and its doing its job alright. Makes me want to stop on my way home and pick out a few things for Savannah. Why is it so intriguing to shop for clothes for little girls? I'm afraid if I were to win a shopping spree in a contest and had my choice where to shop, it would be anywhere that I can buy outfits for Savannah. Even when we visit Target, Shopko, or Walmart for other things outside of clothes, I still find myself drawn in the toddler section looking at all the little girl clothes even if I was just there looking at them the day before. I'ts bad I know, but I just love it. Am I obsessed or what? Probably a mommy-daughter thing.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

I hate to say it...

...but I wish I worked in an office with a bunch of men - this sounds different than what you think. You see, with women, this time of year it's all about giving cutsie little Christmas gifts given to EVERYONE at work. I don't have that kind of money or time this year so I am "bah humbugging" the idea. If I worked with a bunch of men, none of this would matter. So what am I going to do for 8 ladies and one guy for gifts in my team at the office? I have no idea. I thought about getting each one of those large Symphony candy bars, wrapping it up with a cute little note and calling it good, but is that too cheesy? I guess since this is my first Christmas with this team and I don't know them very well, I'm not apt to make the effort too personal but in light of the season of giving I still want to let them know I care with some kind gesture. What do you think? Any ideas? (Think cheap!)

Monday, December 05, 2005

Christmas Carols

My husband and I were talking about the holiday songs playing on the radio and he's right, the songs are ruined with new versions. Granted some of them are the oldies and goodies but then you get this mixture with today's stars singing the carols and it just ruins the whole experience. By the sounds of different collections from the free radio I've been listening to online, they have been doing this for some time, not just now. I'm sorry but I like my Christmas songs to be nostalgic and simple, there is no need for a twisty edge of vocals by Jessica Simpson or Faith Hill added to the old fashioned song as if they are trying to make the top hit list. (Yet I like Barbara Streisand's wild version of "Jingle Bells," but that's probably cause it reminds me of when I was little and my mom would play the LP vinyl record while she was baking, and how can you go wrong with Barb?) Maybe I'm just getting to be old fashioned or something.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Go figure

Okay, okay....I've had it! This morning Savannah got my wallet out of my purse and was playing with it. When we left to go to the grocery store I couldn't find it after I swear I took it from her and put it in safe keeping. So after looking for a half an hour, I decided to just go without it. Well needless to say on the way home from the store, guess who got pulled over for speeding? I did. I can't believe it. I have never NEVER had a speeding ticket in my life. I usually always drive the speed limit and I ALWAYS have my license with me. But of course not today. I don't get it. I guess there is a first time for everything. Two weeks before Christmas I have to pay a speeding ticket. And the cop said he would give me a warning on not having my nice of him. First of all the road I am talking about is a 5 mile stretch with NOTHING on it. NOTHING! They had the speed limit set at 45 when they first built it. A few months later they put it down to 40. Why? I have no idea. There are no houses, no turning lanes, hardly any traffic, and no intersections at all! Just because there will be doesn't mean they need to have the speed limit so low now. The drive is long enough and sometimes it's hard to not space off and go faster than you realize (kind of like being on a long road trip out in the plain fields). I hate small towns for that reason. I sped all the time when I lived in a bigger city and no one ever noticed then.

At least the rest of the day wasn't a total loss. Savannah played with the snow for the first time (only for a second cause it was soooo cold) and the boys made a gingerbread house together.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Chistmas Shopping Bah Humbugs!

I'm sorry to say but either it's because we're done with our Christmas shopping or because I'm tight for the rest of this year because of Christmas or that I'm really not about the whole commercial way of thinking for the holidays for once. I'm sick of all the radio stations and TV commercials talking about shopping and this and that is for sale. This isn't what Christmas is about! It's about making gingerbread houses and getting together with family and lights and caroling and remembering Christ. Anyway, it's been bugging me all week so I had to get it off my chest.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Talking about People will eat anything at the Office

This is soooo true. I was visiting Three Blog Night today and read this entry and just realized how much people do eat at the office. And he is right that it's not just regular food, it's the ick food too. Even I am to blame for doing this. Just yesterday I had a coworker offer me some shelled pumpkin seeds that were green and she had so many that they looked she was carrying around a Ziploc bag full of hopps for home brew. So after I told her, "No thanks," she proceeded to talk me into trying some anyway and of course I did. Needless to say they were okay, but in a cow manure tasting kind of way. I think they were supposed to be used for roasting in the oven with a little oil and seasoning salt, but they were raw. I ended up eating half of them while sitting at my computer working away and still have the rest sitting on my desk. I'm sure that as long as they are sitting there I will pick them up in handfuls and finish eating them without even realizing it.

And then you have the office potluck. If people only knew who made what they surely wouldn't try everything. Or is it that they feel obligated to? I took all the stuff from a potluck once just to be nice. I didn't eat most of it after I found out who made what, but they didn't need to know about it. That's why it's good to eat at your desk in private. Knowing what I knew from visiting the ladies restroom at work, you wouldn't have touched that lady's pomegranate salad either!


People will eat anything at the Office

It never ceases to amaze me the garbage people will eat here at the office. Just the other day we had some extra "blah" tasting corn on the cob. I bring it to work, two hours later...GONE...and this was 12 ears. No small feet for even a big office. But took the cake. A recipe gone bad as far as I was concerned was sitting in my little playmate cooler festering for a few days when I decided,,,,screw it I'm going to see if anybody here will eat this. A Little social experiment so to speak. So I put the suicide supper in the break room freezer with a note sure to tempt people....."Jim's Food". Four hours later....GONE, including the cool whip container it was in (kind of wanted that back). And this stuff was bad, I mean it even looked bad. Imagine something offwhite with ham chucks in it....that's what this was. And I don't even know what that green stuff was. Anyway, I'm watching the bathroom door for any sudden movements.....this could be bad. Stay tuned till next week when I bring a dead animal to work.

Damn, I really miss the cool whip container.

Monday, November 28, 2005


Wow! This day has gone by fast. Maybe being gone an extra day or two out of the week helps pile up the mail creating extra work that actually keeps me busy. Either that or I'm just too efficient. I love having lots and lots of paperwork! (I know I'm a geek but if I don't feel productive I'm not happy.)

I was feeling depressed last night at bedtime. I don't know why. Maybe it's this cold weather? Maybe it's from coming down off of all the holiday fun and events over the last four days just getting to me with the beginning of a new work week? I dunno. I've been okay during the day today, probably cause I've been busy but now that I am not, it's coming back. I say that because I would normally say I am looking forward to getting off to go home - which I am but I'm not if that makes any sense. You see, it's Charlie's first day of school for the new semester tonight so I won't get to see him until really late and the kids won't get to see him at all. Of course don't get me wrong, I do look forward to the kids and the dog (who all endlessly love me the first five minutes I'm home) but making dinner is always much more fun when he and I do it together. It's also nice when we eat together as a family. It's just too quiet around there without him. TTFN, hopefully tomorrow will be a better day and I won't be so hum drum.

I gotta hand it to him

My husband is too kind. I know if I were in his shoes, I wouldn't be as strong as he is. This weekend we went to a surprise birthday party for an old friend of mine. Well the friend I am talking about was friends with me when I was with the ex. In fact this friend had actually gone to school with the ex. So at this party everyone has now and again brought up the ex's name or talked about the boys when they were young etc. Well this being the past that Charlie was never involved at that time, you'd think it would bother him that people don't think about it the way we do - the past, all is forgotten. But he doesn't seem to let it bother him. I always wondered how I would do as a step mom but I don't think I could do it as well has he has being a step dad. I don't know if I could take kids who have a different mother and try my hardest to be a mom to them into the relationship without feeling highly uncomfortable. So I gotta give Charlie some appreciation cause I don't know how he does it without feeling so "out of place" when we are at parties like that or when my family has from time to time mentioned the ex or something from the past that excludes him. I know I wouldn't want to hear about his ex or what she did or people asking about where she is (Yes, people come right out and ask me all too often about my ex and what he is up to...and the nerve of them - why would I know or care anyway? - He's my ex for God's sake!). I'd be a little pissed after a while, but I guess that's what to expect with a mixed family with a past behind them. (All but the asking about the ex part anyway.)

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Thanksgiving wrap up

Our Thanksgiving weekend is going well, all but one incident. Shortly after eating dinner, Savannah had to go to the emergency room. We were all sitting around visiting about to watch a movie and Savannah was playing with one of Grandma's pillows from her new couches and was rolling around on the floor wrestling and tackling it like she does to the boys. All of a sudden she started to cry like I've never heard her cry before. Jacob said he had heard something pop, and that's when she started to wail. I picked her up thinking she had popped the joints in her fingers and went to kiss them better but she just screamed holding her wrist. Poor little thing! Our first thought was that she either sprained her wrist or broke something since she was in so much pain. Charlie (knowing what to do) instantly immobilized her arm to relieve the pain and held it tight to her chest as we ran off to the hospital. Luckily mom only lives about a mile away so we were there and back within a half an hour. She had dislocated her elbow from the socket. The doctor popped it back in and she was as good as new, a little sad, but she wasn't in any more pain. Scare the crap out of me! And here we are thinking of having another?

To wrap up the rest of this weekend, yesterday we put up the tree, today we'll go window shopping and to a birthday party, and tomorrow is Harry Potter! I wish we could have four day weekends all the time! But then again, it's not always fun to be so busy either!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Holiday weekend plans

Well here we are. The day before Thanksgiving. The "Friday" of the work week (for me and my family anyway.) The boys are actually out of school today, lucky dogs. Speaking of school, WOO HOO! Congratulations to my husband for completing yet another semester at school! This week has been nice in that he has a break between semesters on a holiday week when we both have time off of work. So it's basically party time, well it will be after we get off work tonight!

So it's funny when you think about teenagers and some of the things they do and say. My boys, although 14 and 16, are still just little kids inside as they are excited for the holidays. Jacob said to me the other night, "Mom, I'm not going to eat for two days so that way I'll be hungry for Thanksgiving dinner." I told him there wasn't any way he was fasting for two days! A couple of weeks before that he overheard my talking to my mom about Thanksgiving plans and said, "Mom are we having Thanksgiving at Grandma's this year?" After I told him, "Yes," he then said, "I can't wait to taste Grandma's turkey. I'll bet it will be so good." Now this excited little boy named Jacob I can see, he's always my little boy, but even Michael is into it. He surprised me when I asked him what I should take out of the freezer for dinner, "Nothing, because it's Thanksgiving." Also a few weeks ago he had asked me about where we were having dinner so I told him at Grandma's and mentioned that his cousin, Alex who is his age, will be there. He said, "Cool!" So to me it sounds like they both are really looking forward to it reminding me that they are still my little boys deep down inside.

The Friday after Thanksgiving is the traditional day we get our Christmas tree. It used to be the day that the boys and I would put up the pre-lit artificial tree, but since I'm no longer single and remarried we now get live trees. It's so nostalgic and the kids just love it that I know they are really looking forward to it. The only problem is the guy we bought from last year isn't open yet and we're afraid he's out of the tree selling business. We really liked his trees since they were fresh cut the week before he sold them. They weren't as expensive as the regular lots and he's not too far from our house. So I'm afraid we'll end up buying one of those dried up fire hazards at the grocery store lot. Personally I don't like to buy live trees. There is no sense in cutting a perfectly live tree to store it in the house for a month and then throw away. It just makes no sense and makes me feel bad. But I do like the smell they have and it always reminds me of when I was little so I guess for now while the kids are still growing we'll be getting real trees and maybe I can talk my husband into a pre-lit artificial tree after they are grown and gone.

This weekend we are planning to go see Harry Potter. I'm sure it will be sold out so I plan to buy the tickets ahead of time online just to be safe. The boys also got really excited about that when I told them we were going. Savannah will be staying back with Grandma and will have fun chasing her cats around that actually let her catch them. Our cats are never catch worthy, not even for us adults. They are losers when it comes to pet-quality.

Sunday we will visit with my old friends, Shaun & Lauri, who will be in town because of the holiday. It will be nice to see them again since it's been over a year since we saw them last. I hope they haven't changed too much. It seems that when people move away the distance in time and miles between you both everyone grows apart. And I'm sure they haven't changed as much as I have, this I know. Since they moved to Montana, I've gotten married, bought a house, and had a baby. My life is much different now than when they lived here. I will enjoy seeing them nonetheless.

That's our weekend in a nutshell!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Better the second time around.

I made chili on Sunday night but it didn't turn out like it normally did - probably because I forgot some of the ingredients at the store - but it still turned out okay. So today for lunch I guessed it, leftover chili! My husband is right. Chili is always the best after it's had a chance to sit for a couple of days. Needless to say I had a good lunch!

As a side note, let me tell you a funny story about Savannah. The night we had chili she was bound and determined it was hot immediately after she took her bite. Let me explain though. The chili was cooled off to room temperature and she has always eaten our chili previous to this and has never complained. She is constantly sticking her fingers in salsa and hot sauce at the restaurant and eating it plain. So this I don't get. Our chili is not spicy, not as spicy as we could enjoy it. We make it mild just for the sake of Boo's and Jake of course (he used to think think toothpaste and mint gum was hot).

Let me get to the point now. Savannah has been on this kick lately of saying "hot" everytime we serve her dinner. I admit that it usually will need to be blown on and cooled down as I warn her saying the word "hot" so that she doesn't dig right in just in case it's too hot. So she's careful now and says "hot" before she blows on her food and takes a bite. Now the funny part of this story is that when she saw that I had a small glass of eggnog last night, she of course wanted a taste of it (just like she does everything she sees anyone eating outside of the dinner table). So I gave her just a sip. She takes her sip and pulls away from the glass really fast and then looks at me while shaking her head, "Hot!" It was so funny. Eggnog has spices in it and I guess she can taste them and so she thinks they are hot. I thought she would have liked it but she didn't want anymore after that. Funny! I think we have a second Jake on our hands.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Yay! A short week!

I love the holidays and celebrating them, but most importantly I love them for the time I get off at work! I know my brother, Marty, is thinking to himself as he reads this, "Yeah sure, "cardboard cut-out" government state worker that gets a holiday for taking a crap." But I get the holiday off for Thanksgiving just like anyone else and even though I am taking the day off after, I still have to use my vacation time for it. So see Marty I'm not as big of a slacker as you like to make us state workers out to be!

I think the real reason I love holidays though is that they give me extra time to spend with my family who I love dearly. I'm talking about all of my family, not just my immediate family. I'm really looking forward to Thanksgiving this year since it will be at Mom's and not to mention the fact that Mom is making the turkey. I haven't had Thanksgiving at Mom's for I don't know how long. The boys are really excited too. It seems like it was when they and the other grandkids were still little we would got together more often but since most of the kids have grown up, there doesn't seem to be as much time spent together. I don't know, maybe it's just my imagination.

My sister, Monica, and her family will be there, my family, and my brother John and his wife. Maybe there will be more show up for pie. I only hope Mom is looking forward to it as well since I know this year will be the most different for her since she will be home both for Thanksgiving and for Christmas the first time without Dad. I hope her cruise she and my sisters take in between the two holidays will allow her to make some neat memories that will help her cope.

I've seen other people recently list what they are thankful of for the holiday on their blogs. I'd like to make one this year, I never do and it will be good to have a perspective on it since it is the whole reason we celebrate it. In the meantime while I work on my list, I'd like to hear one or two things from anyone out there reading this that you are thankful for to help bring about the spirit.

I am thankful for...

(In no particular order and only pertaining to this moment and time. Is subject to change!)

1. Ibuprofen
2. My auto mechanic brothers
3. Cookies
4. My boys
5. My husband
6. My lawn
7. My mom
8. My job
9. My house
10. Holidays!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Lights Up

We've been putting up our Christmas lights this weekend. It's a litte earlier than I wanted (I usually don't do any Chirstmas decorations until the day after Thanksgiving) but the weather is so beautiful, how can we pass up the chance? Anyway, last year we skipped it all together and it just wasn't as fun, so here we are putting up the dang lights! (Or I should say my husband. He does most of the work, I just put the ones on the porch.) Well I'm off to get Savannah a PB&J for back with some pics of the lights when they're all done!

You can see by the look on Savannah's face that she's not too happy playing the part of the pretend Christmas Tree! She's like, "Why are you doing this?"

Friday, November 18, 2005

Am I bad?

Am I bad cause I work full time and don't stay home with Savannah everyday? Well I feel bad. As I just got done taking a minute to read blogs, I've come to realize that I feel jealous of the blogging stay-at-home moms that write about every little happening with thier kids in exact detail as it just happened that day. Me? I'm just stuck here at work and blog when I get time or need to get something off my chest. I started this job when I was single with two half grown boys and needed it cause there was no other means for support. I also needed to plan for retirement and have always wanted a career in accounting. Since then I've met a wonderful husband and now have a young family started again. Normally I am proud that I work and love having a career. But today I feel jealous. I want to be home with Savannah and play on the floor acting silly with her giving her horsey rides. I want to be able to tell people that she is happy when just Daddy comes home, not both of us. I only feel sorry for myself sometimes and I know that there would be one day without each of us going nuts being at home, me without my work and Savannah without playmates. But next week is a short week for Thanksgiving, so I just wanted to rag about it for a minute and thanks for listening. (And maybe it's the fact that it's a sunny day outside and half of my team has left early for work. Plus I'm all caught up for the day. I know, I'm too damned efficient.)

On the other hand, I am really feeling more and more like I belong at this office. Finally. As time goes by it feels as if I've known everyone all along. Even the director of Finance chatted with me about everyday stuff at potluck lunch. My husband would be embarrassed to know that we were talking about him, but oh well. Now the only thing left that I need is my silly friend Lisa to help me sing old country songs out loud while we are working!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Good Job Michael!

I just wanted to say how much Michael has improved his grades this year so far. This is really good considering that last year he had at least one or more failing grades in some of his classes, and that was throughout the whole year. This time he didn't even get anything lower than a C-! Good job! (Of course making him wait to get his license hasn't encouraged him at all...that and a hard working job on the farm for the summer. ) We told him that if he weren't to graduate he should get used to working a hard job like that with little pay. He has told us that keeps his mind focused on getting that diploma because he doesn't want to end up in a job like that out of high school. Just goes to show that a little discipline and rules can go a long way, especially with teenagers who are so easily apt to get out of hand. I need to give Charlie a lot of the credit though. I think he has been good for both of the boys and helps keep them focused on their future. He will be the only dad to them they'll ever know. He is good at talking with them about man stuff that I can't relate to them with since I've never been and never will be a boy. (Duh.) In so many ways I really wish he would have been around sooner when the boys were younger. Michael has been through a lot with my divorce and all, he has struggled with his emotions and dealing with the fact that is father is felon in prison with no intent to have and hold a real relationship with him. So this past summer up until now has really been a good eye opener for him and I hope he is prepared to be on his own come time to do so.

Sunday, November 06, 2005


Since Dad has died, certain times of the day on the weekends will trigger memories of when I was a kid. It seems that what went on during a typical Saturday or a Sunday is what comes to my mind most. On Saturday mornings I will often remember Dad with his music playing loudly and him frying potatoes for breakfast. The smell of bacon and eggs cooking on the stove was present and the stereo would be playing Mexican ballads, Johnny Cash, or stuff like the theme to "The Good, Bad, and Ugly." Dad would be so lively on those mornings and grumble at me for not saying "Good Morning" back as he read the newspaper in his chair. I wasn't a morning person, but he was and everyone else needed to be too! It all makes me laugh now and I wish I was more of a morning person like he was.

Today the memory I have is of when the whole family would go for a ride up the canyon on Sundays. I don't know how often we went on these rides, but there is this one event that sticks out in my mind the most as it is so vivid. I remember getting home from church and mom and dad packing the pot roast and vegetables in the big black roasting pan right out of the oven and into the car. We would head out for a scenic ride up the canyon and a quck picnic out in the woods. Cascade Springs, the fish hatchery, and drives around the expensive neighborhoods are just a few other rides to mention. I hope to do the same thing with my own family more often to continue to share the memories I had of my childhood and maybe we'll bring along our pot roast too!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005


Halloween was great. The weather was nice, there were plenty of kids in the neighborhood running around making the spirit alive, and our jack o'lanterns didn't wilt for once. I think because they are so big they are apt to take the heat of the candle a bit better, that and we just carved them on Sunday night (I know - we got off to a late start). Savannah didn't know what to think at first but she got the idea soon enough after the first few pieces of candy. When she got home she enjoyed transferring her candy from her bucket to the Halloween bowl that the trick or treaters emptied.

I can't believe how many trick or treaters we had this year! In years past we've either been at mom's or the neighborhood had it in the church parking lot AKA Trunk or Treat - another Happy Valley tradition for a Sunday holiday - so we were never home to really gauge what it would be like. We bought quite a bit of candy but still ran out about 7:00. I have never seen so many Darth Vaders in my life! I think my favorites were the Star Wars family (Mom, Dad and two sons dressed all in theme), Scooby Doo, and the miniature doctor. My brother and his family did a good job too. I couldn't stop cracking up at his Napoleon Dynamite impression! Overall, I think this has been the best Halloween in a long time! Hope it was all good for you out there.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Talking about Halloween Memories

We took the kids to Pumpkinland yesterday even though it was raining all morning. The sun came out and weather warmed up making it a great afternoon for us. The corn maze was quite muddy but nothing that couldn't be cleaned up. I'm pretty sure that for Savannah this is the continuation of the tradition I had with the boys year after year when they were small before Charlie and I met. We all picked HUGE pumpkins to carve and afterward we went to mom's and had pizza and watched Charlie Brown's Great Pumpkin and Ichabod Crane's Headless Horseman by Disney. Of course Savannah didn't sit still long enough to even watch one inkling of the movies, but I think mom enjoyed our company as we did hers since we won't be seeing her on Halloween night. All in all it was a very enjoyable day and I think that this makes for a great memory this year and years to come!

What's your favorite Halloween memory?

Friday, October 28, 2005

Missing loved ones.

So I haven't seen my husband for the last three days. I'm getting so used to having his company with the extra carpooling time, that I'm having withdrawals. He usually is at school on Wednesdays and Fridays anyway, but yesterday he had to work until 9:00 p.m. He says, "At least it's not forever." But then I think about my dad, and now that he's gone, I realize that there is a forever, no matter what people say to try to make me feel better about his dying. So there is a forever at some point and time for everyone, and someday Charlie will be gone too, and my other family. I think to myself, "How does someone prepare for something like that?"

I can't even stand to watch the news any more; a two year old little boy beat up and killed by a grown man, a lady hit on her bike, two teenage students hit while walking to school, and worst of all - a lady hung herself on a tree in the neighborhood which no one noticed thinking she was a Halloween decoration! And all this in one week. So I guess what I'm getting at is, let your loved ones know how much you care for them while they are still around, or not around. Even if it is expressing your weakness of missing them or needing them. Charlie said to me today after I told him I wished he didn't have school tonight, "I know it sounds bad, but I'm happy that you miss me." I guess he makes a good point that even though I was expressing it in a different way, I was still saying I love you.

I wonder if it's bad then if I am not missing my dad as much as I used to? Or am I? I still miss him, I know, but it comes out in different ways than it did before. Before I used to mourn from deep within, sobbing with heart wrenching tears. I still do, but only on occasion. Now when I'm missing him and thinking of him, I put the radio on his favorite AM country station or I'll watch an old TV show like Andy Griffith or something to keep his memory alive with me. I even enjoy watching the Time Life commercials that are on in the middle of the night or Sunday morning advertising the Classic Country collection with clips of Johnny Cash, George Jones, and Loretta Lynne when they were in their prime. Takes me back to some good memories of many Saturdays at home in the backyard with the old radio blasting out the garage from morning until night. Dad was always tinkering around. I still haven't listened to the taping of the funeral and don't know if I ever will, even though I do have a copy. I guess I'm just not ready yet.

Back when I was a single mom, I never thought I would get married again, yet I did, and I did to a wonderful man that knows just as much as good old Dad did about fixing things and making things work. And Charlie was there for me 150% when my Grandma died, then when my Grandpa died 7 months later, and then when Dad died another 7 months after that. How could I have gone through that alone? I feel all of these feelings but what right do I have to feel them? Mom has lost her mother, father, and last her husband all within 2 years time. She is doing well from what I see and I commend her for being so strong and coping with such a great loss even though she doesn't want to. I hope she knows she is loved, and I hope my husband knows he's loved too. I am grateful for them both and all of my family, and I always miss my loved ones when they are not near.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Ode to the husband

My poor husband. He spends all his time at work fixing things and maintaining the facilities there so nothing goes wrong but no sooner does he try to make for a lazy weekend, stuff at home goes wrong. The thing is that we live in a two year old home with no preivious owners. There shouldn't be anything wrong for a very long time. But the water on the bathroom floor and the plugged up dishwasher when we moved in was a good sign the plumber the builder hired is a P.O.S. Now our pressure reducer isn't working and since it's a $120 piece, you'd think it wouldn't be going bad for at least 20 years. I'm sure this butt-crack showing idiot simply put in something used or second hand he bought. So now my hubby's spent the last hour trying to keep our overflow from the water heater from leaking. And of course, this happens on a Sunday when there is no one to call to get something done for a reasonable rate.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Halloween Memories

My favorite memory of Hallowe'en is my Grandma Johnson's house where she had doughnuts and apple cider waiting for us kids on the night of Hallowe'en. She always loved our costumes and always took pictures of us then while she and mom would visit, we would spend what seemed like whole night in her neighborhood trick or treating getting loaded with candy! This time of year makes me miss her and Grandpa the most. As Hallowe'en approaches it's always fun to look back on years passed albums to see everyone's costumes and wish I were a kid again.

Thanks Mom

Mom took me out on the town for my birthday, well technically it was after my birthday, but the weekend doesn't always land where you want it to. First, we went for an hour of massage therapy and boy did I have a knot in my back that really didn't want to come out. Then we ate at PF Chang where of course I got the Cashew and Almond Chicken and she got the Moo Goo Gai Pan. Was the yum! And the best part of all was the play at the Hale Center Theatre. Disney's Beauty and Beast was excellent! They portrayed every character just as it was in the movie and the special effects were wonderful. I enjoyed it so much that I had to go home and watch my copy of the animated movie on DVD. I can't believe how close they were word by word on the script! Anyway, it was a great time and I'll always cherish this birthday present. Thanks again mom, you're the best. It's memories like these that making getting old not so bad.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Can I just say...

...that taking care of someone else's kids makes you really appreciate your own? I guess living with them you just know them like the back of your hand and it all comes so naturally. I've been been off work for the last two days since our sitter has been on maternity leave and this week was the week we didn't have anyone for replacement so my husband and I are taking off half and half to stay home with Boo. I also volunteered to take on my brother and his wife's kids who also use the same sitter, (who right now are all asleep along with Savannah - hooray!), and I guess I just know Savannah too well making it easy to take care of her. I think that's a mom's advantage, but when you take care of someone else's kids for only two days it's a little hard to get to know their eating habits and so on and you know you're not mom so nothing will be as good as what their mom does. Savannah's cousin is about 4 months younger than her and I guess I'm just happy to know that Savannah eats better than I thought she did as I have worried too much about that since she's so much littler than her cousin and come to find out her cousin doesn't even eat half what Savannah does. And although Savannah doesn't talk much, she just seems so much more grown up to me now with the littler kids around. I reminisce as I feed the baby about when I used to feed Savannah when she was that little. Makes me want to cry and just having my birthday yesterday doesn't help as I realize we're both growing up too fast.... Oh, and as a side note on babysitting, I have come to the conclusion that I don't want any more kids and that I don't think babysitting is a full time job for me - even though my brothers kids are very good and easy to take care of. Thank you to all my babysitters I've had, you do a hard job!!!

Monday, October 03, 2005

Week 2 in New Office

I've actually had work to do today! Can you imagine rejoicing for work? Now that Lisa has started her new job, I will be immediately responsible for her duties from my old region as well as the Western region duties on a temporary basis until the other two on my A/P team are brought up. It was silly though to have had me sit for a week with nothing to do other than socialize, and that doesn't go well over here with the director of the department around the corner - besides, I'm no social butterfly (Thank goodness for that, I don't want to be thought of as a troublemaker!). I can't even totally unpack until Friday of this week since they are moving everyone around. So yeah, last week was a total drag.

I told my new coworkers I didn't know why they assigned me to come in last week with no work. So I said to them, "I think they had me come in to either get settled in or to make sure that I wasn't going to change my mind." They laughed at that, after all this transition has been so "if-fy"from what I hear with people being frustrated and unhappy. It was a fun loving joke and they all know I'm not going to leave especially when they find out that I am driving 84 miles per day round trip to be here and carpooling over half the week with my husband to do so. If that's not committed, what is? Besides, maybe the real reason behind it all was for the big wigs to make sure they were the ones that didn't need to change their mind about me being here! Now that I can see!

I think I'll be fine though. My dilemma right now is that I NEED MY KEYBOARD TRAY BEFORE MY ARM FALLS OFF! That and the fact that I'm not accustomed to the lunch group yet and am not sure I ever want to be. TMI about the LDS temple, young women night, and the LDS General Conference session that aired nationally over the weekend. I need to somehow sneak away while I'm not established and start either eating by myself (where it's most safe from making unwanted friends) or find a different group. I guess we'll see. Funny how Happy Valley was less LDS oriented at lunch time than it is here outside of it! Go figure.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Good Food. Good Weekend.

It's been a nice weekend. My sister came down to visit and spent some time with me and my mom for my "early" birthday yesterday. We went shopping and to the movie "Flight Plan" then to Mimi's Cafe for dinner. It's always fun to have a girls date out. Today my family and I had a pleasant afternoon with home-made chicken noodle soup. (I'm secretly hoping it will get rid of my sinus problems for good!) To top it all off, we made carameled apples for dessert I can't think of a better way to start the fall season!

Friday, September 30, 2005

Cold, cold, go away

ARGH! I hate this. So I've just gotten my end of the deal from the family cold. Haven't had one for a while, but that's what I get for kissing my husband only he got more than just a cold. He also was sick to his stomach in addition to the freezing and coughing so at least I feel lucky in that sense without the porcelain king by my side. Nothing's more miserable cause you are still functionable, yet you feel like crap. It's all in the sinuses which makes it hard to think, hard to hear, and hard to see. My eyeballs even hurt. I guess I just need to buy some cold meds and walk around like a zombie, not that I already do.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Day 3 in the New Office

Today we had an evacuation drill. Very organized, very calm. I'm thinking, "Wow! This place has got their act together!" Well being that my old office would holler out over the intercom, "Code Yellow" but no one knew what it meant kind of makes a person leery. Well come to find out the next day there was a real and actual bomb threat that no one on my side of the building new about, so someone, or a couple of people actually, weren't doing their job. So yeah, this is progress. Sure, we aren't allowed to ask for Kleenex tissue as part of the office supplies, but the fact that people actually mark a roll to make sure you are there at the evacuation point makes better sense. Besides, too many "Milton's" over used their share of tissue back at the regional center anyway. On an ever brighter note, turns out there is a beautiful day outside and I am now stuck in here until 4:00 smelling leftover bagels.

Hmmm...makes you think...

"Employees especially respond to praise that comes from a boss or supervisor. Sometimes just a knowing look, smile or thank you is enough to give employees the message that they are recognized and therefore valued."

This is a quote from my friend's newsletter that she publishes for the regional agency I just finished working for. For me and the time I've worked on my team from day one to last week, nothing was ever said to mean anything more than a simple "Thank you" from my boss. Now that is enough for me, I was happy to have that. I'm not one of these girls that needs to have attention by acting like a fool to get it.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

This is so hard today...

Today, right now actually, there is such an emptiness inside. This is so hard. To feel as if you are part of a new family that is. I guess while working for the regional side of things I really took for granted the closenesss that came from that. Here it feels like there isn't that type of bonding. I especially miss my friend, Lisa. I miss her a lot and it's sad to know that I finally found a really good friend that I coudl have spent a lot of good times with who actually had so much in common with being a full time working mom that we have to be separated now. I haven't had anyone around to be friends with like that since I started this job except for Julie, but she and I didn't work as close together as Lisa and I do. I miss our dark office. I miss the view. I miss the feeling of knowing just about every answer to anyone's questions. Now I don't get asked questions. I'm not needed like I was before. Is this impersonal sensation I am getting because I now work for managing the whole state rather than a region with too much to take care of instead of the ability to take care of each other? Don't get me wrong, everyone in this office has been so nice to me, but it just feels so impersonal here right now. I know it's cause I'm new here and it takes time to adjust to new environments and I'll get through it all eventually. I will and I'll be better. It's just hard to do at the same time I am missing my good friend.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


Okay, so I did have one occurance of something on my first day here at the Admin North building. I am sick of this drama, do I have to go through this type of thing again and again? Sure why not!! What kind of a woman would wear a mini skirt, knee high boots, and sit open legged leaning on the desk where at eye level in front of a coworker who is sitting in his chair? And if you were a woman who did that sort of thing at work, wouldn't you be embarrassed for you and the guy if someone had unexpectedly showed up to the scene who was new and being shown around getting introduced to people on their first day? I mean, hello, it's so obvious what you are doing!!!! DUH! After all what are these people thinking? This is work! Not a freakin' bar where you pick up on men! It's obvious that men get googly over this and can't control themselves, so women, KNOCK IT OFF! You are a disgrace to those that actually socialize romantic relationships outside of work where you are supposed to!

Monday, September 26, 2005

First Day

Well my first day here at Admin North was slow but good. I and no one else will really know what I'll be doing for a while as things get filtered through the system, but I am glad to have a computer finally. I guess they thought I would just be able to hook up and go, but when the IT guys found out where my computer was from they wanted to wipe the slate clean on that puppy! Everyone was really nice and introduced me to themselves and have shown me around and all. Now all I need to do is just wait for the work to pour in, which it will. Eventually.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Talking about Dad's Chili Verde

And the verdict is....4 STARS! The verde turned out great! I think I did a good job and the men would agree. Spicy and full of flavor but not so spicy that you can't taste anything. I think I especially like the flavor of the egg mixed in with everything. If you're not one that likes to mix your food, well you'll have a hard time with this. I just eat the verde and potatoes burrito style in the tortilla and dipped it in my egg yoke. The house still smells of green chilies but it's the good kind of smell. I think I'll have to make this more often, even if they aren't dad's chilies.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Hmmm...what to wear for Halloween?

Obviously Savannah is a petite thing. Petite enough that she still fits in her costume from Halloween last year. Of the busy bee costume for 3-6 mos sized babies, drowned her last year but I think they manufactures make them big on purpose so that you can put their coats on underneath so if we really wanted to we could use it again. We put it on her the other night and it's just fun to see her reaction. She still hates it even more than before now that she can express herself better. (If you can't tell by the expression on her face!) But the funniest thing of all is that the pic of when she's older makes her look like she has an afro hairdo. LOL.

For this year, we don't know what she'll be. It's a toss up between an angel and a witch. Depending on what her disposition is for the week when we go shopping I guess. Last year picked the "Busy Bee" cause it was just after she started crawling and she was into everything. This year the holidays will be a lot of fun now that she's a little older. Unfortunately we'll all have to share the candy cause if we let her get to it she'd eat it right through the wrapper!

Some funny stories about Jake

I have been meaning to write about Jacob for a while now. I don't think he's had his own category yet just cause nothing major has been going on with him for me to talk about. So I wanted to tell a few funny stories about him that he will never live down. We just call them "blonde" moments. Enjoy.

Jake's embarrassing story #1:
When going to the grocery store one day, I had purchased some meat from the butcher. Even in this day and age they do still wrap some of the meat in butcher paper, you know, the white thick paper? It was a pot roast about the size of a 5 lb bag of flour. I like to have pot roasts every so often and this one was on sale so I was planning to keep it in the freezer for whenever I had time to do a big dinner. From day one my boys have always helped with putting the groceries away so I usually don't inspect what they are doing until after it's done. I make sure things are usually in the right place, but this time I really didn't bother to check and was in a hurry to do something else. About two weeks had passed by when something coming from my cupboard smelled like a dead mouse. I had the boys check to see if their hamsters were in their cages and that they were both still breathing and alive. I looked under the sink to see if there was anything theree. I just couldn't find where that smell was coming from. I told my husband about it, that maybe he could take a better look and at that time it was getting to the point where we could really pinpoint where the smell was coming from. It wasn't in the cupboards on the floor so I thought to myself, "This must be a really tricky mouse to get up so high and got stuck so that's why it died." I cursed at the cats for not doing their job and was disgusted they could allow us to have mice. So as we opened the cupboards the smell just poured out from what looked like a bag of flour. Jake had put the roast in the cupboard not looking at the package at all.

Jake's embarrassing story #2:
We went to Lotus Garden to try their Chinese buffet for dinner since we were right in the neighborhood. It wasn't our usual spot we go to but we thought to try it anyway. They have a Mongolian barbecue with the meat, noodles, and veggies displayed in front of the grill. I don't know if he had chosen the meat and veggies he wanted and had them cooked or if he smiply wandered over there thinking it was part of the regular buffet. When he returned to the table, the Asian waitress looked at his plate and laughed and said, "You cook noodle!" really fast in a hard accent. None of us could understand what she was saying and we hadn't noticed Jake's plate yet, so we kept asking her to repeat what she said. She laughed and laughed and repeated herself until we finally understood. When we looked at Jake's plate, there they were, raw noodles from the Mongolian barbecue!

Jake's embarrassing moment #3
Before I got married, the kids and I would often go out with my parents for dinner. Different Chinese buffet, different city. All was well and we were done eating. The kids always go for the soft serve ice cream afterward and there are usually toppings available. I was sitting at our table visiting with my brother and as Jacob walked up to sit next to me with his bowl of ice cream, he sees the expression on my face and utters, "I know. I have too many sprinkles." I laughed out loud as hard as I could and said, "EW! You put bacon bits on your ice cream!" He was shocked. In one sense he didn't believe me and didn't want to admit it but in the other I knew he knew. We dared my brother to taste the ice cream with the bacon and he did! I wished I would have not said anything to see Jake's expression after his first bite!

Dad's Chili Verde

I'm finally going to try my hand at Dad's chili verde tomorrow for breakfast. Since mom brought so many chilies last week for our salsa, I can't let them go to waste. But it's sad to know they weren't planted with Dad's hard working hand so I think of it like this, they were still grown in his soil which still make them his. Dad would roast the chilies, peel and seed them, then he would make his verde sauce, add some pork and seasonings and serve with his famous fried potatoess and warm tortillas aside huevos. One of my best memories of spending time with my dad during the last decade is peeling the chilies with him. As I was roasting and peeling them tonight, the scent that brought warm feelings gave me a smile on my face letting me know that he was right there with me. I hope it turns out just like his. Just like the way I'll always remember.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Saying my Goodbyes...

"Fair Thee Well...."
So today is my last day of working in the regional center office. I have had such great friends at work here. I am going to miss them so much. We have had so many laughs together and memories that being separated from each other will be the hardest part of all of this consolidation of admin stuff. For me, it takes good time to develop a relationship with someone to actually consider that person a friend, in fact I don't go out of my way to make friends, if they happen, they happen. So to finally relate with a small group of friends individually or together is always something earned over time. Since I don't really have friends outside of work that live nearby who I don't really talk to very often so it's been so good to have them at work. They were one of the main reasons I got up in the morning to come here everyday. Where else can I go to talk with other women about the working mom stress, the funny things husbands do stuff, the emotional "TMI" stuff, the sharing of good recipes and baked goods from home, the housework tips, the funny kids stories, and the good advice from one working mom to another?

It's funny how we've been treating every day this week as if it's our last - going to lunch, eating chocolate, reminiscing, and bringing in treats for each other. I guess reality is really hitting so we're getting our friend fix now before we all go our separate ways. I wish them all the best of luck and plan to keep in touch with them as much as I can to see how they are doing and will be thinking of them through my next endeavor. Thank you ladies for being my good friends! I will miss you greatly, you are one in a million.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Yay! I'm so excited!

So my brother's been fixing up my car and we also had new tires and alignment for it done and can I just say I'm so excited! It runs like brand new! Yay! No veering to the left anymore, no grinding dust on my brake pads. Thanks to my brother, Marty. I am so appreciative to have brothers that are mechanics cause in this day and age you can't trust a greasy stranger to be honest with you about your car in order to make a buck or two.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

"Working Mom-isms"

I guess in the interim of trying to find a temporary babysitter while mine is out on maternity leave and my moving to the Finance Office at work, I am in the midst of so many thoughts of "working mom-isms." I don't know if that is a real term, in fact I'm sure it's not, but I've come to add it to my dictionary for the week. Being a working mom, I'm sure those of you out there also tend to ask yourself if this work thing is all worth it for your family. Of course it is and it isn't. Is it worth it for you? Most of the time it's not but in a lot of ways, it is. I mean there's pride that comes with working outside of the home, but to be honest it's just more work. To tell you the truth if I were to quit today, all my extra time aside from taking care of Savannah would be invested in cleaning my house. So would I be quitting just to do housework? No, not really, I would have more time after school and at night for the rest of my family without worrying about putting the laundry away or getting the check book balanced. The only problem in fully quitting for me would be taking away my abilitiy for personal growth. I think working has really helped me to becoming a true individual. It has helped me find myself in so many ways that I couldn't get from anything else.
Earlier I was blogging about organization so I hit a few other places while surfing the net and came across a very true to the working mom's heart article. It's given me good insight to not expect so much to be done at home and make compromises where they can be made rather than get mad and feel like I do it all so that I can enjoy the time I do have at home. My husband tells these same things to me all the time, but I never want to listen. I just want my house organized at all times so I can feel at ease with life. What's wrong with that? I admit, I'm not as bad as I used to be, but there are many days where I feel frustrated to come home and still see a need to work. Don't get me wrong though, my boys are awesome at helping with their chores, if they are reminded. I just need to reprogram the way I think, cause I really don't have to do it all, but there are some days that it feels that way and my husband can vouch for that! See this article!

Here we go...

So I just heard that the office I'm going to move to next week has very poor morale due to some decisions and the fact that people are being slotted into other jobs and being asked to move out of their cubicles. I am very leery about all of this, more so than I was before. I guess I have to walk through those doors with my head high and remember to not take anything personal, none of this is my fault! So I gave myself a "Hard Working Mom of the Week" award since this is all taking a toll on me personally in addition to the babysitting dilemma. YIKES! Here we go on the low end of the rollercoaster, eh?

Monday, September 19, 2005


Brrr! It was a cold ride to work this morning, with the window down that is. I've been driving my dad's truck for the last week while my brother is working on the 30,000 mile service on my car. The truck is about 17 years old and it has electric windows and locks that have worn over time and sometimes they work and sometimes they don't. Well Friday afternoon it was freakin' hot and I was stuck in traffic for about an hour, so instead of running the air conditioning, which by the way works very well - go figure, I just rolled the window down a ways. Well this morning I saw that it was down and was hopeful it would go back up as sometimes there are no problems, but I was wrong. So here I am, state worker on her way to work, rolling down the highway at 65 miles per hour holding my hair in one hand and the steering wheel in the other and the heater is going but not really warming me up other than my feet. You'd think if it's going to be 80 degrees during the day, how could the morning be so cold? No better way to start a Monday morning at work...

Garlic fingers and a smelly house!

This weekend my husband and I canned salsa. Yeah! We did it! This is the first time for him for ever even seeing this kind of thing done and this is the first time for me for actually doing it without a friend or family member helping. So yeah, we're pretty proud of ourselves! Garlicky smelling fingertips and a spicy smelling house later we had canned 23 jars. If we wouldn't have ran out of a couple of rings, we would have had 25 jars, but that's okay. And my fingers still smell like garlic.

It's funny how the weekend worked out though. We were supposed to go to my sister's house for a BBQ on Saturday and she lives like two hours away so it would have been an all day event. Well she and I were supposed to can some tomatoes and possibly juice depending on how much tomoatoes I would have brought up from mom's garden, but turns out she had canceled Friday night, after I picked the tomatoes. So here Charlie and I are with a box full of tomatoes in the pantry that needed to be used within the next couple of days. Of course we wanted to take our shot at salsa, and since we had mom over for dinner on Sunday and she brought some green chilies with her and more tomoatoes so we could make use of them and take our hand at trying it. Funny thing is after all those tomatoes we had, I forgot to save one for our hamburgers this week! DANGIT. I guess I will have to stop at mom's for one measley tomato on my way home from work.

For dinner we had my yummilicious basil rub roasted chicken. I just love that stuff! The breasts are so flavorful and tender and the drippings make the best gravy too. Mmmm...I hadn't actually planned on mom being over for dinner until next weekend, but with the change of plans we made it a week earlier. It's funny how things end up working out, but it sure makes the weekend feel productive even if does fly by when there are too many things packed into it. Here's the recipe for the chicken:

Roast Chicken Sweet Basil Rub

5 lb or close to Whole Roasting Chicken
Stuffing (if desired)
1 Tablespoon Salt
1/2 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
2 teaspoons Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 Tablespoon Basil
1/4 teaspoon Onion Powder
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/4 teaspoon Paprika

Mix salt, sugar, garlic, onion, paprika, and lemon juice together. Next, add black pepper, basil and oil. Mix into a paste-like consistency. Rub mixture on breast and thigh area of stuffed whole chicken and cook 20 minutes per pound in a Reynold's roasting bag.

Organization a Must

It's funny how stuff comes about throughout the day makes you think about things. I was training a co-worker on some of the duties he'll be taking over when I leave to work for the Finance Office. As I was handing the information over to him he seemed to be overwhelmed with how organized I had kept things. He stated, "You are so organized. I need you to come and work on some of my stuff." I laughed and told him my husband had just said the same thing to me but not five minutes earlier. Coincidentally, he and my husband happen to be in the same type of job. Aside from the point that the industry of faciilities management expects too much paperwork to be done on top of keeping the building running and the staff happy with their offices, is that I came to the conclusion that organization skills and motherhood go hand in hand.

Being a mom is like a full time job. You have deadlines to meet, tasks to delegate, supervision of staff, budgeting and accounting duties, appointment making, and most of all you coordinate team building exercises like no one else. In some essences mothers have an advantage to being organized for these reasons. I mean don't get me wrong, organization skills take good practice, a little disciplining, and some OCD tendencies, but if a person isn't put in the situation to manage something like that they may not thrive on it the way we moms do. It's hard work to be organized and if you've been doing it as long as I have it tends to become second nature. I just hope that when I leave my coworkers, there are not strings untied and things aren't left "undone." I think the aim for my goal this week is to be able to look behind me and know things were taken care of leaving a good impression with the staff who are staying behind.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Can you believe this?

Have you ever heard of a cat who eats raw macaroni? So we got home late last night and didn't put all of the groceries away and wouldn't you know it but there was egg noodles all over. Yes, Kittens has gotten into the package of egg noodles and ripped it open to eat them. I'm telling you this cat eats everything and anything but to actually go out of her way to get to it is just retarded! I guess that's why she's so heavy and fat, not including all her fur. I wonder if there's such a thing as kitty counseling, I mean is she just eating cause she's bored and depressed or could she really be that hungry?

Here is the wanna-be Garfield caught eating raw macaroni a while back ago. Yes, this isn't the first time!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Can I just say...

that stress is not good on the face? I mean I've always had bad acne my whole life, , yes pizza face, but I've felt I've outgrown the hormonal breakouts that occured all day long every day and things were finally toning down for good. But no. Not these past two weeks. It's like being 14 all over again. And then I find that when I'm nervous I start to pick and touch my face even more which is not good for your complexion anyway. So I wonder, do I have acne at all or am I finding impurities and bumps in my skin picking them so much they look like zits that are being healed over? All I know is it really needs to stop and it won't until I am safe at my job again or I sit on my hands. I hates it! I hates the insecurities!

Oh, and my poor husband. He had to have an ingrown toenail removed yesterday. Oouch!! I wouldn't want that, but if I could, I would trade him since he is really suffering and has a job where he is on his feet all day and I don't. I guess those things can be a b*tch if you know what I mean and I think toes are more sensitive than you think with all those nerve endings and such. I feel bad for him and I hope by the time he reads this, he's feeling better.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Jen's got a point

So I was reading my sister's blog this morning and thought, "This is so true. And how do you tell someone other than a friend or family member that you gotta go?" Just the other day some people gathered around my cubicle as I was already standing up to leave to go potty and they all started a conversation. Luckily I could sit down to help relieve the pressure, but if I hadn't had that option I would have been in the same boat as Jennifer. I'll bet after you dart away like that, they must think you are psycho and then realize what you were doing when you come back a few minutes later so it wouldn't have been any different if you had made the announcement to them that you had to go anyway. She's right about the blogging too. This is such a good way to share with people about anything you want to and for them to read it on their time if they want to or not.

Quote from Bitterkat

September 13, 2005

sharing...oversharing, and blogging

My poor co-worker. She really needs her own blog. The lady loves to share. The nice thing about a blog is you can share away and if someone actually reads your blog and gets bored they can just quit reading. No one gets their feelings hurt. It's all about the sharing. It's not about the listening.

Take today:
I really had to go to the bathroom so I jumped up out of my chair and was immediately blocked by oversharing co-worker. She had this look on her face that I know really well. It's the look that says "I am so excited and I have to share...I just have to."

So I stopped but kind of started dancing around (gotta go!).

Coworker: "I made a marinade for my chicken that I'm bbq'ing tonight."

Me: "That's great!" then I tried to run past but could see that she wasn't ready to let me through.

Coworker: "It's got all this stuff in it. You'll love it. You have to hear..." and then she named the ingredients one by one counting with her fingers.

"Balsamic vineger""Italian dressing""Olive oil""[some other stuff]""Ketchup""Hot dog mustard""[some other stuff]""and a touch of lime!"

Her face glowed with excitement!

Then I jumped up and down and squealed, "Yay! That's interesting!" and then quickly ran away to the potty.

She's a sweet lady. But she really needs a blog. A place to share the random crap and stuff.

Coming soon: I share another random recipe from the 70's recipe book.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

C is for cookie, that's good enough for me.

One of my favorite things in this world is chocolate chip cookies, that with a cold glass of milk. Mmmm, nothing better. So I'm told I make a good chocolate chip cookie. Well not to boast or brag, but I do like my chocolate chip cookies too. But what's not to like about them and any other cookie made by any other person? So sugary and chocolatey all warm and gooey fresh out of the oven?

I wanted to share with you my recipe which isn't a recipe at all, it's just my way of making the cookies and since people are always asking me how I get them to come out so well, I thought I would share what I do. The trick for me is to use butter flavored Crisco in stead of real butter or margarine. Real butter and margarine cook differently so I think that makes a big difference.
I had plenty of help from Jake and my husband eating the dough, Michael eating the fresh baked cookies, and as you can see from Savannah cleaning up. Usually the broom wins these fights since she is so little.

Tammy's chocolate chip cookies:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Using a regular chocolate chip recipe off the back of any baking product, I take the eggs, sugars, and butter flavored crisco and cream them together with a hand mixer until smooth.
Next mix in the salt, baking soda, and vanilla.

Finally I add the flour to this mixture. I don't add exactly what the recipe calls for, I just add 1/3 cup at a time until it looks like it's at the right consistency. Doing only a small amount at a time makes it easier to blend in. I use the hand mixer at first making sure flour is mixed in evenly after each time I add it. When it gets too thick for the mixer, I then switch to a wooden spoon and keep adding the flour 1/3 cup at a time until it is at a good form, sticky so that it sticks together, but not gooey on your fingers that you can't drop it onto the cookie sheet.
Then I mix in the bag of chips. Take a spoon and form the dough into dropfuls onto a silver air bake/aluminum cookie sheet. Not sure what they are called, but they work better than the dark pans.

Bake one cookie sheet at a time in the center of the oven for about 13 minutes or until there is browning starting to form on the cookie. I alternate between two cookie sheets so there is a batch in the oven the whole time. I let them cool about 5 mins while the other pan is cooking and then start all over until the dough is gone.

When they are cool enough, put in an air tight container or sealable sandwich baggies. This will help keep them soft.

The tops of the cookies should have a few spots starting to brown telling you they are ready!

Sesame Street has started having Cookie Monster advertise eating vegetables. When I was kid watching the show I never got the impression to pig out on a bunch of cookies from watching him do it. Or did I? Maybe that explains my love for these cookies? Hmmmm...we might have something here. Cookies are a sometimes food? Do these people think that parents allow their kids to eat cookies whenever they want? Maybe some parents do, but Sesame Street shouldn't feel liable for the kids eating habits just from watching the show. Check this post out...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

It's a Sheba, Sheba, Sheba!

As my dad always used to call out to her. So we adopted Sheba from my sister-in-law this weekend. Turns out we happened to mention to mom we were in the market for a fence so if Kathy ever wanted to get rid of Sheba, we'd take her since it seems Kathy's has never been all that into her as a pet and we have known we wanted to get a dog sometime after getting our fence in. Because my mom lives with my brother and Kathy, no more than she mentioned my suggestion to her, Sheba became ours. I think the fact that the cops were called in about her barking the night before last from someone in my mom's neighborhood was the reason why we rushed our decision on taking her before the fence is in, but we figure might as well start bonding with her now. She's actually a really good dog. Now you know if it had been a Marmaduke dog there would have been no the fact that she's a patterdale terrier and a jack russell (little thing with hardly any fur, less than the cats even) made the decision to take her an easy one. Savannah and the boys really could use a dog and the dog could really use them. Kids and dogs go hand in hand, in fact they are running around together upstairs right now. It's not that Kathy didn't lover her, she just didn't pay the attention to her that she needed. But boy, she's a hyper little thing and I guess so is Savannah and Jacob and Charlie! So here's to a new era of doghood for our little family. I myself haven't owned a dog, EVER, unless you consider the German Shepherd named Belle mom and dad had when I was a kid and all the litters of puppies she had around her, but that was AGES ago! Luckily my husband's was raised around dogs so he'll know how to take good care of her when me and the boys can't figure it out. I feel so bad though, last night we took her harness off and it just snapped off like a rubberband. I don't think Kathy realized that maybe Sheba grew into it and should have had it loosened it a little for her, that and she always left her on the leash. So her fur and skin is so raw she is scratching it to death as it itches with healing, but she still seems to be a happy camper. Now the cats? Well, that's another story. Let's just say that they've disowned us and still haven't come out from under the box springs of Michael's bed in the basement bedroom. Not for food, not for water, nothing. It's been almost 24 hrs now and I wonder how much longer it will be before they'll get with reality and come out. LOL!

Jake and Savannah playing with Sheba in the back yard. (Note there is thick grass now!)

Jake loves his new pet!

That is one tired out dog! I don't think she had a nap all day and she sure is worn out!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Two more weeks...

And I'm off to work in my new office in the big city. Yep, they've given me a date now, the 26th. It's a week sooner than I expected so now my apprehensiveness has advanced 2/3 more than it was before I got the news yet at the same time I feel some change will be good. I think it's just hard to be the newbie all over again and working with the big wigs is...well...sort of intimidating. (Yikes....)

The drive will change a bit. Okay it will change a lot. I will be able to carpool with my husband since he only works about 7 miles away from the office I will be working. I don't know if that's a good thing or not cause they say that sometimes too much time spent together can harm your relationship. I'm sure I'll have my share of Bob & Tom and he will have his share of Radio from Hell since we both agreed we would take turns listening to each other's stations. I'm interested to see how our fuel bill changes after a month and that will definitely help our budget! (Don't even get me started on the gas prices!)

Thursday, September 08, 2005

I'm such a GEEK!

Take some advice from me, if you are working around new people or will be, give them a chance to get to know you before you make jokes. Obviously my joking style is subtle and people don't always recognize it, so I should have known when to keep my mouth shut in front of my soon-to-be supervisor. Yesterday I was invited to the office where I will be transferred to for an accounts payable training for our the new imaging payment system. Well needless to say, I thought I made a funny in reference to something she was saying. Turns out she took it serious. We were talking about the process of approvals and she used the example speaking for herself, "I will approve this at this time and yada yada," so I say, "Wow. Sounds like you'll be a busy woman." (Meaning that she will be approving all of the accounts payables for the whole state, but knowing that she wasn't it was supposed to be a joke. I'm not that dumb!) Then she saids, "There will be more than one person approving transactions." Duh, I knew that all along! So it must have been the way I said it...ugh.

I'm such a blockhead. My soon-to-be new boss is actually very nice even though she is a very sharp woman, she does not come across as condescending as a lot of people who are smart do. She seems to have good managing skills and listens to your point of view, but then again I haven't really worked for her. I guess cause one of her staff suggested to me that she is and can be hilarious, that I thought she'd know I wasn't being serious. But like I said, takes people to get to know you.

So now I'm thinking maybe I will fit into this new accounting group I will be working with soon, dry humor and all. You know what they say birth control is for accountants? Their personality!

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


So the governor is housing 300 New Orleans refugees right now at Camp Williams. They say that half of them want to relocate with other family members in other states and the other half want to stay here. I think they are all feeling overly welcome from the hospitality of ours and the other neighboring states trying to help comfort them. My only worry is that when all the newness of trying to get them back onto their feet is worn off, they might not be so happy to stay here. In the business I work for, we strive to get people out in the workforce, but I hope these people don't jump too fast for what is already a heavy populated area growing at a fast rate. I'm not a counselor helping them out, but for those that are they gotta wonder if they do stay in the state if they will end up back in their offices looking for jobs or training a year from now. And who will pay for their training for them while they are jobless? Will our Unemployment office pay their UI checks? I sure don't imagine that FEMA will pick up the bill after all is said and done. And do these southern people know about the type of community they are getting themselves into? I mean we're talking on the other spectrum of New Orleans style living. I bet some of them will cling to the change of scenery, dry valleys, and the secure feeling they have after all has happened, but as far as work I imagine a lot of them will be going to SLC since there really isn't much money or choice of jobs in Happy Valley. I suppose, if I were in their shoes, I guess anything right now is better than nothing. Good luck to them regardless of where they stay, they've been through hell.

Monday, September 05, 2005

We're Back!

Well we're back from Goblin Valley. $160 in gas later I was wishing I would have just listened to Charlie and bagged going no matter what my desire was, but what ya gonna do? The prices of gas shouldn't stop me from getting my family out into nature should it? When we got there it was pouring down rain. I was worried that it would be like that the whole time but in the back of my mind I knew it wouldn't. The next morning we awoke and yes, it started to get hot....we ate breakfast, had a messy diaper accident, and then went to the valley of the goblins. Stupid me, after I had my sister go to all the trouble of sending me her back pack carrier to lend to us so that we could pack Savannah around while we explored the rocks, I forgot the dang thing. I had kept it in the motor home from the trip we took a month ago at Palisades, but then Jacob had used it in between and I had forgot to make sure he put it back in. Duh! But all's well that ends well and I'm glad to be back at home. So's Savannah. She really is at the point where she doesn't travel well. We'll have to keep that in mind for any next year's plans. Now that I'm relaxing at home, I have more time to think about work. I've been very apprehensive thinking about all the changes I'm about to face. And because I'll be "alone" without my friends is why it's the scarriest for me. I have been in my job over 5 years on the same team in the same building with the same boss. So yeah, a little anxiety there. I need to just take it one day at a time. I used to be so good at telling that to myself after going through my divorce and quitting the drugs...I guess I kind of gotten out of the habit.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Have a good weekend!

Well it's a holiday weekend. Yay! When I randomly have suggestions of where our family needs to go from time to time, like camping or a day trip, my husband tells me, "Make the arrangements and we'll go." So for this weekend I made reservations to stay at Goblin Valley. As of right now I don't even know if we are going for sure. With the way gas prices are I'd rather spend the money on movies and pizza or something we can do at home. But then if we do that, it feels as if this summer will be a waste. What to do? We already have mom's RV waiting at home to pack and go, but it would be great to not go anywhere either.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Things are moving fast!

So I just found out yesterday that I will be permanently moving to the "salty city" over the next few weeks to help out with piloting the transition of duties from regional to state level administration. I didn't think I'd have to move for at least three more months, so this is a big change that I don't know how much I'm ready for. I guess no better time than the present? Funny how a few weeks ago I was wishing it would get over and done with and boy did I get my wish? I'm going to miss my friends more than anything and hope that they all keep reading my blog and stay in touch, at least by way of technology. I'm sure there will be lots to share with our new experiences and endeavors we are about to have in our new positions.

My poor Mom.

My mom had surgery yesterday on her shoulder. I feel so bad for her. It's so hard to be uncomfortable and then on top of that she doesn't have dad there to help take care of her. There's nothing better than having your spouse around to help pick up your slack when you are down. I've tried to offer to stay with her as long as she needs, but she insists I go home to my family. I just want to cry...if I could take her place I would, but God doesn't allow us to do that. Hope you are feeling waaaay better by the time you read this mom.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Ooh, big celebrity in town!

Or at least in the vicinity of the same county where I live. News flash: "Gary Coleman from "Different Strokes" moves to Utah"...supposedly after he fell in love with the rinky dink town after shooting a movie there. I think he's just bankrupt, found the houses cheap, wanted live differently and not have to live up to an exhausted child star role for a change. Wouldn't you? Anyway, it's getting pretty serious now...we're officially becoming the next Hollywood.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

This weekend

We went to see the movie Skeleton Key with my mom yesterday and boy can I tell you if a movie leaves you thinking about it even into the next morning, it's a good movie! I admit I thought I had it all figured out and thought it would be mediocre, but they definately saved the best for last in this one. We also went with mom to find her a surround sound system for her new family room/entertainment room. I don't know how many years it's been since she's had the TV in her front room, but it's a been a long time. Her new furniture and system will be a nice change and everyone can enjoy watching movies together.

Politics, go figure...

You know there are some really crooked ways in the business world. Especially in government. There has been something bothering me so bad this weekend that I can't help but talk about it to ge it off my chest. Of course I won't go into specifics, but things going on a work right now are not and never were in the best interest of everyone, only those that are favored for reasons I will never know. Even the best of people that work hard and get their job done on time every time are still kicked in the chin when it comes to fairness, and yet others are just freely given oppurtunities they haven't really worked for. I know for my position, I will be okay, but it's the others I worry about, and the others I know that do more work than anyone who are the ones that will be treated the poorest and be given excuses for why things will be done they way they are. And of course no repercussions will be taken to fix things and make things fair, and nothing anyone says will matter, so here we go again. Round two. Anyway, now that I feel better I will leave it at that.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Welcome back friend! :)

We decorated my friend's cubicle while she was at Disneyland. Gotta love the hiding Hawaiin boy in back of the Dragon photo! Took her some time to finally notice it there, HEE! Sidenote, would you ever want a golden plated crystal demonic dragon as a gift for your 30th birthday from the office "group?" (Inside joke!)

We screwed up all kinds of stuff!

So many funfilled surpises...don't worry though, there will be more stuff for her to find later when she moves to another job due to the reformation of admin....hee hee!

Work Friends

Good friends, good food, lotsa fun! We celebrated Gina's going away to bigger and better things today at lunch. No better way to end it than with chocolate and and many laughs! Since we'll all be separated soon, we needed to get a lunch fix!

Since they are getting rid of our positions, Gina's gotten a new job, Lisa is on her way to one next, Julie gets a new office in a new location, I'll be moved to the "Big City" out in capital land, and I'm gonna miss them greatly and all our good times...

Julie, me, Lisa, Gina, and Selma

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Back to School

Well the boys are back in school. Michael is a junior in High School now and Jake is in the 8th grade at Middle School. They didn't seem as excited this year as they've been in the past since this is their second year in the same school I think. They've both hit the milestone of turning over into a new journey of entering High School or Middle School, so it doesn't seem like it's been much of a transition from the summer. Of course now their nights will be full of homework and remembering to set the alarm, but boy will they be able to appreciate the weekend. It's a little harder on us, mom and dad, though. Getting Savannah off in the morning to the sitter takes an extra 15 mins worth of time, but seeing her little smile and that she's always so happy to see us in the morning makes things less hectic. So I guess back to the old rig-a-ma-ro with life, eh? Only 4 more years and then it's time to send the last one to kindergarten. Wow, that sounds weird!