Sunday, August 31, 2008

Woman, You Know How I Eat My Ice Cream!

I like ice cream.

I like chocolate ice cream.

I like chocolate ice cream drenched in caramel.

I like Belgian chocolate ice cream with cocoa shavings drenched in caramel.

I like Belgian chocolate ice cream with cocoa shavings drenched in caramel not in a bowl—I take my ice cream straight from the container.

I like to have my wife bring me the container of Belgian chocolate ice cream with cocoa shavings drenched in caramel, after I have yelled, "Woman, not in the bowl! You know how I take my ice cream!"

There are two issues addressed in this post: first, the method in which ice cream is consumed by me and by most other ice cream aficionados—though they usually fail to admit it; second, the fact that I summon my wife by calling out, “Hey Woman!”

My name is “Raging Stallion,” and I’m addicted to ice cream, I’ve been clean for about 12 minutes now. . . . Seriously, there should be a 12-step program for persons who suffer withdrawals when their freezer doesn’t contain the proper percentage of frozen delight.

I apologize now to anyone who has participated (or will participate) in any social event involving ice cream at our house—chances are I topped the ice cream before it ever got to your bowl. If I didn’t, I wanted to and Maleen wouldn’t let me.

Have no fear, though, it’s all sanitary enough. You see, I take special care to honor my wife with the first bowl of ice cream—scrapings from the potentially affected (or infected) areas of ice cream. Ah, sweet ice cream. But it doesn’t stop there. Maleen and I like to doctor up our ice cream just so—well I do anyway. This usually involves chocolate syrup (not chocolate “sauce,” Maleen) if it’s anything but chocolate ice cream and caramel to compliment the chocolate. In the spirit of efficiency, I combine the act of doing dishes (by not dirtying any) and eating ice cream in the extremely functional method directly from the container. No bowl, no scoop, just one spoon. Yes, folks, that’s right 66% less dishes to do—means a cleaner house for me and you!

So now that I have that out on the table (ha, ha, no pun intended), now we address the other issue. To all of you who I have offended in referring to my wife as, “Woman,” I offer the following explanation (not really an apology—just information).

Families enjoy a heightened level of freedom of language. We take additional liberties once we’re over the threshold that we won’t take once we cross over the threshold again to the outside world. This usually manifests itself through inside jokes and unique terms of endearment.

Since I rather enjoy the shock manifested on the faces of polite company when I yell out, “Woman, bring me my ice cream!”; I like to create terms of endearment for my wife that are sensational to others. I like to watch others squirm in the way they do when they’ve heard something they find absolutely offensive, but don’t have the words to say to a host who has uttered such offense. Do I toy with people too much? Probably, but I like to consider myself somewhat of a social experimentationist. Some people recognize this behavior under a different title, “pushing other people’s buttons.” I have to say that because I get deer-in-my-headlights gazes when I say “Social Experimentationist” to people, but “The-Guy-Who-Pushes-Other-People’s-Buttons-to-Check-Out-Their-Reaction Person” seems at least intelligible to most other humans, if not condoned.

Anyway, my wife explains it this way, “I don’t mind it when he calls me, ‘Woman’ because he thinks it’s funny and he laughs at his own jokes. And it makes me happy that he laughs at his jokes. If I thought for one minute that he said it offensively, he wouldn’t be able to use that phrase. But as it is, I kind of enjoy the reaction he gets from other people, and probably from me too. Do I react?”

I once said that at one of my workplaces to the absolute astonishment of a female educator. “If someone called me, ‘Woman,’” she proclaimed, “I’d slap him ‘cross the mouth.” Thank goodness I married Maleen.

So to all you peeps out there who may have heard this term of social-experimentation endearment, now you know why. My secret’s out of the bag—and that’s just fine, I’ve still got ice cream to soothe the slap—when it [eventually] comes.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Look Who's Starting to Smile

Daisy is starting to brighten when she sees familiar faces. This is always a special time for me because it makes me feel all the work until now has not been in vain. If she is smiling at me, that means I have done something right.

I have to admit that the newborn stage is a little odd for me. Every child comes with personality but it is harder to find at this age since it usually consists of how calm/cranky they are, or whether they tend to pee when you take their diaper off. Daisy is prone to have trouble burping and she spits up a lot, but that doesn't tell me anything about her sense of humor or if she will have an aptitude for art. Yet, I love Daisy with all my heart; as much as my other girls who are bursting with pizazz. And I know that all that personality is bottled up inside her, waiting to be revealed.

I can't wait. Those smiles are just the beginning.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Ha Ha

I go scrapbooking with Keri each month. She is my good friend and so she knew about little Daisy long before Daisy even had a name. When I was contemplating the name Daisy, I told Keri,
"Knowing me I will probably end up shortening her name. After all, we call Ivory, Ives all the time. So who knows, I may end up calling her Days instead of Daisy."
To which Keri replied,
"How cute, you would have Days of our Ives."

Ha Ha

Recently I was listening to KidStuff on the radio. There was a guy on there named Ralph from Ralph's World (a show I have never seen), but it must have music on it. He said that after a show one time a mother came up to him and told him a funny story. Her kids had gotten into the habit of listening to ONLY songs from Ralph's World in the car. The mother wanted to hear something else so she suggested The Beatles. The kids only agreed to listen because she told them The Beatles were Ralph's cousins. After a short time one of her kids came up to her and said, "Ralph's cousins really aren't as good as he is. They must feel really bad about that."

Ha Ha

Wow, it is definitely a different generation being raised. I still love The Beatles. Then again, I haven't heard this Ralph guy. Maybe he isn't too bad.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Swimming at Grandma's

Since my last post was rather wordy, I thought I would put this one in since it is mostly pictures. Do you recall the 255 pictures Grandma took...well here are a few more.

Here is most of the gang. Kathryn (a SIL) with her three boys (KJ in her lap, Kaysen to her left and then Hinckley standing) and my three girls on the towels. Yep, she has all boys and I have all girls.

Here is my other SIL, Amber, with her youngest, Jack.

Robyn and Rozzlyn (Amber's oldest) had a great time together. Grandma said they held hands most of the time while they played.

June was warming up on the toasty cement. Tyler says he used to do that all the time.

This picture makes me laugh. Kaysen and Hinckley are hosing down Rozzlyn, but she seems to be enjoying it.

Here are my three sillies.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Ivory; Fears, Stubborness, Holding Hands, and Growing

Recently, Ivory has been conquering her fears. I am so proud of her. The first was the car wash. It used to be that we would get in there and the soap would cover the windows and she would freak out. Then all through the washing and rinsing she would cry. I would try to explain to her that everything was all right, but it didn't work. I would even give her a snack, but when we got inside the car wash she would just hold the snack and cry. Poor Ivory.
I tried to wash the car when she wasn't around, but the other morning I couldn't avoid a few errands with her and the car wash was one of them. I tried to prep her early to give her plenty of time to face her nemesis. "Ivory, we are going to wash the car today, but don't worry, it is just water. You aren't going to get hurt."
Ivory sat thinking for a moment and then said, "I don't want to be killed in the car wash." Wow. I am not sure if I was more shocked by the fact that she knew the word 'killed', or that she actually thought the car wash could be lethal. I explained very patiently that the car wash was not dangerous; that no one would get hurt. She still mentioned several times on the way there that she did NOT like the car wash.
Then the big moment arrived. We entered the car wash and things were okay as usual. Then...came the soap. I turned around and watched her eyes get big, and I said, "Isn't that cool?" I could see her trying to relax her face and put aside her fear. She finally smiled and said, "Yes, that's cool." I managed to convince her during the entire ordeal that it really wasn't so bad. She did an awesome job.
Then the same day, she conquered her train fear (maybe?).
Ivory has always feared the trains. They are loud by our house, but once she was at a neighbor's house whose fence is the only thing that separates them from the track and that was too much for her. Before that instance, she was leery, but after that, she was down-right petrified. If she was playing in our backyard and she heard a train, she would come running for me, crying, asking to be up. If she was in the yard without me, she would run to the back door, wailing and pounding on the glass. And, if there was a train outside when she planned to go out, she quickly changed her mind and you couldn't convince her otherwise. She would always say, "Trains gonna get me." Poor kid.
Yesterday evening though, we were out enjoying the weather together as a family in the backyard. I decided this was an ideal opportunity to get rid of some popsicles cluttering the freezer. Ivory was standing with a popsicle in her hand when she heard the train. Her eyes got wide for a moment and then she looked at the popsicle and then at me. I smiled and told her she was going to be just fine; she could stay right there and finish her treat. I think the sugar won her over because the apprehension faded and she ate right through the train. She even looked over and said, "I can see the train."
I am so proud of my little lady. Look at her tackling milestones and facing down her fears. I hope she can ignore the train even if she doesn't have a popsicle next time. But she is a trooper; it almost inspires me to get over my fear of spiders...almost.

In other Ivory news, even as she grows, she is getting more stubborn (wonder where she gets that from?). The other day she had a sore throat so she was more quiet than usual. I guess I should say, she didn't speak as often, but in actuality, she was louder than usual because she was crying about everything. I knew she wasn't feeling well, so I tried to be understanding, but that only goes so far. Eventually my patience was wearing thin, and I started to ignore the constant sobbing. She went into her room and her baby and carebear were still in her crib so she couldn't reach them. She started bawling once again. I came in and quickly assessed the situation, but I wanted her to ask for them in a normal voice (we tend to frown on drama in our house). I told her to tell me what she wanted, but she just looked at me with those big brown cow eyes and said nothing. I mentioned that I would be in my room when she wanted to voice her complaint. Well, not much later, I came in to this.

She wouldn't leave the room without her animals, but she wasn't going to talk, so sleep was the only compromise (I put her animals next to her so at least she could wake up to them and we wouldn't have to start all over again). Stubborn little bug.

Hey, I'm on a roll, why stop there? Ivory made me laugh the other day when we were crossing the street. She does NOT like to hold hands while crossing the street, but her stubborn mother keeps making her hold someone's hand. I don't care if it is June, Robyn, Mom; just someone. So we were crossing and she let go of my hand. I firmly reminded her that she has to hold someone's hand while crossing the street, so she immediately clasped her hands together and said, "I am holding my hand." Touché Ivory.

Lastly, even as she is getting older, she isn't getting much bigger. I wanted to buy her some new pants, but I couldn't find 2T ones, so I thought that maybe she could fit into the 18 mnths size. So I grabbed those but they were really too long and too big at the waist. So, yes folks, we got 12 mnths. Never mind the fact that she just turned two and a half.

After I washed them, they are a little more capri (which makes me feel a bit better), but they are still more her size than the others. I am raising a herd of midgets. At least they are cute midgets.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Do You Hear What I Hear?

I was pondering today on the emotional feelings that can go with a sound. For instance, my heart never fails to give a leap of anxiety when I hear one of the children coughing at night. Lately the sound of the toilet flushing upstairs brings with it a wave of pride and relief because that means someone made it to the bathroom in time and that is a penny (or thirty) I am saving by not using a diaper.
One of my most favorite sounds in the world is the front door opening. It means Tyler is home. I can't really express all the emotions that run through me from that small seemingly inconsequential noise. I am a little put-out when one of the children opens the door around the time he would normally come home, because the surge of adrenaline is annoying when there is no Tyler to go with it.
A few days ago, I heard possibly one of the worst sounds in the world. It was an ice cream truck (which is annoying by itself) playing It's a Small World. What a terrible combination.

For posterity, I need to document one of my favorite sounds from childhood. When my Dad would get medicine or eye-drops for me, he would rub the bottle between his hands to shake it up, and it would make this cool clicking sound—kinda like when you shake a can of spray paint. I always loved that sound; and I would try to duplicate it by rubbing the bottle between my hands, but I could never make it work. It wasn't until years later that I discovered it was his wedding ring clicking against the bottle. Now I can make that sound too (thanx Tyler).

What are some of your favorite sounds, or least favorite?

Monday, August 25, 2008

First Day of School

Am I ready?

I think she is.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Better Late Than Never

So, I have a confession to make.

I can't type.

Well, I obviously know how to use a computer or how would I have blathered on for over a year now. But, I do not type like I am supposed to. I have developed my own style of typing that works well for me. Tyler laughs hysterically when he watches me type. He tells me that there are a few fingers that I never use (like my pinkies) and I don't use my thumbs for the space bar. (You should try typing without your thumbs sometime.) I never really noticed my terrible typing. I knew it wasn't correct, but I could type about 60 wpm so I wasn't bothered. I did have to look down from time to time since my fingers weren't used to finding the keys, so I couldn't type in the dark (but who sits and types in the dark anyway).
I was never very good at typing to begin with. In school there was a keyboarding class I should have taken to improve my inadequate typing, but I didn't really want to take the class because I was a straight-A student and I worried that typing would be my downfall. But to complicate the matter, there was...Mr. Bilow.
Mr. Bilow was the keyboarding teacher, but he was also my gym teacher. Most people didn't meet Mr. Bilow until they took keyboarding, but I knew him all too well. He chose me early on to be a P.E. leader in his class. I thought this was because I was athletic and that may have been part of the reason. But I really think it is because he was kind of a creepy old man. I hate to even say this because it is not going to help any of you mothers sleep better at night (especially you mothers with daughters). I had heard rumors that he pinched girls bottoms in the hallways, but I didn't believe the gossip because I figured he would have been fired if he was walking around molesting students. Now before you freak out, he never laid a finger on me and I sure wouldn't be writing about it on here if he had (I'm sure I would go through the proper channels of counseling). However, he did earn my apprehension. He used to watch me run at the beginning of class. Jenny and I were the two leaders and we would run together to keep the other kids motivated. (Interesting that he chose two GIRLS for his leaders). We both noticed that he watched us, but I thought at first that he was just making sure that we were doing our job. Well one day before class I had to have Mr. Bilow sign something for class. It was just the two of us. I came up and he said, "You know Maleen, if you were older, I would hustle you."
Um, what??
I laughed awkwardly and left quickly (at the time I wasn't even sure what the word 'hustle' meant, but I could feel that it wasn't good). I never really looked at him the same after that. I wasn't fooled when he watched us run at the beginning of class (Jenny and I had many conversations about twisted gym teachers). And then came the time for keyboarding. I'm sure none of you can fault me for not wanting to take another class from Mr. Bilow. I didn't relish the thought of him peering over my shoulder while I typed. I admit that my grades still factored into the decision, but Mr. Bilow tipped the scales.
Thus my typing has never been ideal. I was reading someone's blog the other day and they mentioned this website where there is a typing class for kids. I bit the bullet and went to take it myself. I now type more or less correctly, but much slower. This is very frustrating to me and I often want to resort to my previous concocted version, but I can see improvement and I don't need to look at the keyboard now (Yay! I can type in the dark now!!!!). I have a lot to say, so it's tough to s-a-y i-t s-o s-l-o-w-l-y, but I'm convinced it's going to pay off. I am often tempted to write short sentences or leave out jokes to save my fingers the extra agony, but truthfully I need the practice.
And so, it took me many more years than I planned (and great mental tribulation--I may need counseling after all), but now I can type. Thanks for nothing Mr. Bilow.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Geez Man, I'm Surrounded By Amateurs...

...if you want something done right, you've got to do it yourself.

Yeah, I think the crab said it best.

Some of you may be like me. I love help with the house, but I also like things done a certain way. I try very hard not to be picky because I think Tyler would be less likely to help if I told him he was doing things the wrong way. So when he empties the dishwasher and I find dishes in the strangest spots, I don't complain. And when he takes the kids for the evening and gets them in bed but doesn't put dinner away, I thank my lucky stars that he took the kids in the first place.
One of my favorites is when he folds laundry. He really doesn't know which clothes go to which child. Inevitably one of the kids comes to me with a shirt or some pants and asks why 'so-and-so's' pants are in MY drawer. I just smile and say, "Your Dad put the laundry away," and they always understand.
Just a few nights ago I left a bunch of laundry on the bed. It was already folded in neat piles and Tyler was kind enough to put it all away for me. The next morning, I went to get some underwear for myself and it seemed like I was a short a few so I asked, "Tyler, did you put all my underwear away?"
"Yep." He said. I didn't think much more about it. Every time I opened my drawer though, I could tell that I didn't have enough. I thought maybe I had more in the hamper that I hadn't found yet, but after doing five loads yesterday (almost everything in the house) there was no more underwear than before. I was stumped. I even asked Tyler a few more times if he put my underwear away, but the answer was always yes.
Well, last night as I finished the very last of the laundry, I had some mismatch socks. Everyone ends up with some socks that don't have a match, so I have a drawer where I put them until we can locate their mate. So, I opened up the sock drawer and there was ALL my underwear. I just started to laugh. True, it is the drawer above my underwear drawer, but it is also Tyler's sock drawer. Why would my underwear go in there? I turned to Tyler and said, "My drawer is the third one down.
"What's in the second drawer then?" He asked.
"YOUR socks," I said, stunned that he hasn't realized this. "In fact, you made me move all my stuff down to the third drawer so you could have your socks in here," I continued.
"Really? When did I do that?" he inquired.
"About two years ago..."

Ahh, there is probably a reason that women run the household most of the time. I'm just glad that I found my underwear, and next time I just need to look a bit more thoroughly when Tyler puts stuff away. It may not be where I would put it, but it is probably somewhere close by.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Fete Day!

I am a little behind on blogging, but I couldn't neglect a post about Fete Day. For those of you who don't remember Fete Day, it is our homemade holiday for August. We dress in a color (different each year) and then we plan some activity, invite some friends and exchange gifts of the same color we wear. This year was purple and we had a great time.
The Eddy's and Scoresby's joined us for bowling in the afternoon. I have to admit that I was a little jealous of the Scoresby's purple tie-dyed shirts. We always wear the color (of course), but I liked the look of their whole family matching. They even all picked out purple bowling balls (now there is a family that takes Fete Day seriously).

This is the first time we have taken the girls bowling and I think they enjoyed themselves. It certainly helps that the lanes have bumpers for the youngun's and a ball ramp to get the ball up to speed.

We let June try once without it, but we thought we were going to have to run down the lane and push it the rest of the way. Tyler was actually quite good at lining up the ramp to hit down individual pins. Robyn liked the air most of all

and Ivory liked that she was among friends.

I think she has a thing for Mason because you couldn't keep her away from him; and to his credit, he took everything she dished out (this included hair pulling, pinching of cheeks and possibly licking or biting). He said he didn't mind. I can tell he is going to be a good dad. Check him out, holding Daisy after asking really nicely and sanitizing his hands (Keri, you are raising a real gentleman--let me guess; he isn't this nice to his sisters usually?).

Tyler and I had a good time bowling, but our scores were not spectacular. I think the girls all beat Tyler, but Keri was the real champion of Fete Day. She had the highest score of the group (better luck next time, Stevie Buns). We took her crowning photo back at the house.

Here is the queen of Fete Day, but we had a close runner up. Bret wished he had won, but he had to settle for 'best in show' (here he sports some of Savannah's Fete Day gifts).

Back at the house we opened an assortment of purple presents and then feasted on some delicious chow. I love how Tyler is trying to escape with his homemade cinnamon rolls with purple frosting (don't worry, they didn't get far).

We had a very enjoyable day and here is one more picture of the matching shirts (Mikayla is absent because she left to babysit).

Sorry we didn't get a family picture of all of us in purple, but we just didn't look as good.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Dawn is Breaking

Yes, I have finished Breaking Dawn. That means tomorrow I can actually...

-Take a shower
-Clean something in my house
-Speak to my children
-Read people's blogs discussing this (stupid addictive) book

I decided to just dive right in and get it done. Quickly, like ripping off a bandaid. Tyler looked at the house today when he came home and asked if I was finished with the book (He may have noticed my lack of housecleaning). At that point I had two pages left to read...seriously, two pages. But now that I am done, life can resume its normal rhythm. Phew... the way; no cavities.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Let's See a Show of Hands...

...all those who like to go to the dentist?


No hands?

Except you there in the back. What, was your father a dentist? I mean, who could possibly enjoy having their teeth scraped and if they are really lucky, they can come back to get their teeth drilled. Not my idea of fun. So I am less than thrilled to be going to the dentist tomorrow. Here is hoping I don't have any cavities.

The good news is I finally finished my other book, so I can now devour Breaking Dawn. Do you think the dentist would let me read while he cleans my teeth?

p.s. I am very impressed. Several people got the kids correct. The first one was Daisy and the second was Robyn.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Quick Quiz

Name these two children.

Hint: They are my children (your choices are June, Robyn, Ivory or Daisy)

Good luck. Tyler didn't get them right.

I Won Third Place at the County Fair

And by County Fair, I mean our Ward's Enrichment Night where they put on a County Fair of their own. It was really fun, right down to the meal of chicken and corn on the cob. We played games and socialized. It seemed like a lot of the new babies were out (including my own), so sisters walked from car-seat to car-seat taking a peek at the new additions.
They had a Pie Contest and I decided that I could get involved in that. At the last minute I wasn't going to make one because I didn't have peaches and it meant another trip to the store (I was already having one of those weeks where you end up at the store every day despite your well-laid plans—and I know you have all had a week like that). But I went anyway, and in the end I was happy I had gone. My pie came in third place (judged by the elder's who were stuck in the nursery). It is my mom's recipe, but I have always enjoyed it. Here it is:

Peaches and Cream Pie

½ cup sugar
2 TB flour
1 unbaked pie shell
½ pint whipping cream
6 or 8 fresh peaches (or 1 large can sliced peaches)

Mix flour and sugar well. Add cream and stir until smooth. Peel and halve peaches. Remove pits. Lay in unbaked pie shell, cut side up. (Or drain can of peaches and pour into pie shell) Pour cream mixture over all. Bake in 450 oven for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake for another hour or until custard just sets. Rack to cool then put in refrigerator. Eat ice cold. Yum!

It is different and tasty! I thought the whole evening was very well planned. They even had some sisters in the ward perform a clogging routine they had learned. If I don't make it out to the real County Fair this year, I will count this experience just as good.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

All Tuckered Out

My mother-in-law sent along some pictures of the girls while they were in Idaho (about 255 to be exact). I probably won't put them all on the blog, but there are some that are worth viewing.
These two had to be first. After a long day of playing in the sun and water, Ivory was starting to be weary. Grandma brought her inside and put her in the sink with warm water. She gave her a cup and spoon to play with to keep her busy. Well apparently it wasn't quite enough to keep the attention of a tuckered out two year old because Grandma came back to find this:

Poor little lady fast asleep in the sink. At least she managed to prop herself up so she wouldn't fall in. Grandmas sure know how to use up all their energy. Stay tuned for more G'ma adventures.

Monday, August 11, 2008

70 Pairs of Underwears

So the potty training is going well. Ivory was very ready (I guess her silly mother was holding her back). We have an underwear drawer in the bathroom where the girls go when they need panties. Luckily since I have all girls, I don't need to separate out any underwear; they all just go in the drawer. Ivory knows where to go and she knows what to do. She even likes to put them on by herself (I just have to show her which side is the front). Most of our underwear has come from Grandma. She knows that it is better to have more than less underwear for those kids who don't pick up on potty training quite as well as Ivory (um...that would be my first two children). But, Grandma has failed to STOP buying underwear. The drawer was getting quite jammed before the trip to Idaho, but after they came back from time at Grandma's, it was ridiculous. They came back with more princess panties and the drawer could no longer hold the plethora of underwear we own. Just for kicks, I decided to count them. So, counting the ones I could find (which I think is most of them), we have 70 pairs of underwear. Anyone in need of little-girls panties??
It has taken some stress off me. The other day, Ivory did have one accident (the only one so far). She had a bit of diarrhea that took her off guard and she smudged a set of undies. I only felt slightly guilty that I threw them away instead of scrubbing them out. This guilt comes from my insane need to not waste things, but I think we will manage with our 69 other pairs of underwear. And don't worry, next time I will clean them out like a good mother should.

Oh, and Santa, we don't need any underwear for Christmas, thank you.

Friday, August 8, 2008


Now if any of you have ever been impressed by my crosstitching abilities, you should know I learned from a master. Obi-Wan has taught me well. Usually I just call her mom. She recently finished a project that I think turned out amazingly well. Here is a link to her site where she has a few pictures. I was just going to link to it, but then I realized how sad I would be if I made this blog into a book later and didn't have a picture of my own, so here he is.

How awesome is that? I am truly impressed. My mother keeps trying to tell me that I have gotten better than her at crosstitching. I am NOT convinced.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Cure

My girls are back!! I was so happy to see them last night. No one got into bed until after 11:00 pm, but I needed extra hugs and kisses. I think they had a blast up in Idaho. June especially was already missing Grandma and I think I have been called 'Grandma' at least eight times this morning. Robyn was dry all night and Ivory has been wearing underwear all morning. Even as I type this, she headed in to use the bathroom yet again (seriously, how does Vicki work her magic?)
But even more miraculous...Vicki cured Ivory's eczema. Poor Ivory has had bad skin problems since she was born. A lot of it went away, but the eczema continued in the crooks of her elbows and knees. Her knees are especially bad. We have tried many things; ointments, cremes, lotions, prescription and over the counter stuff. Some things have helped a bit, but nothing has taken it away. Even this last week while the girls were in Idaho, I asked the doctor for another prescription. I even bought the creme yesterday but I may never have to use it because Ivory's legs look great! Like all-the-way-healed great. You can't even tell that she had an eczema problem. Apparently Vicki was using Cortizone.10*, an over the counter anti-itch creme. Who would have known? I am thrilled. Her little legs look so wonderful. I hope it lasts. I know some things work for a while and then don't work as well, but since nothing has made this much of a difference, I will be happy as long as it lasts.

*By the way, the creme is made to work on skin irritation, inflammation and redness, rashes, insect bites, and eczema and psoriasis (that last one is for you mom--try it).

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Maleen's Musings

Where to start? I was in the shower (where I do some of my thinking) and I decided that I had a lot of random thoughts that needed to be spoken, so lucky they come. Of course, you can decide now to stop reading, but since you are already here--take a gander.

My allergies have been so much better this year. I don't know if this is because I was pregnant, or that I am getting used to the pollens and such, or if everyone felt better this year. Whatever the reason, I am certainly not complaining. Instead, I am rejoicing. I have not had ONE night where I couldn't breathe. This is miraculous. Now, don't get me wrong, I can't mow the lawn or weed the garden without some serious sinus discomfort, but as a whole, I feel GREAT! I have made my peace about living with a tissue within arms reach, but the added bonus of a whole allergy season of breathing...I feel like I won the lottery. Now, when I say breathing, this means that at least one nostril is clear. This may still sound uncomfortable to some of you, but people, one nostril is a whole lot better than no nostrils. Trust me on this one. So, I will do my happy dance out of summer and into fall and just hope I don't get sick. Fingers crossed (only once this time).

We went to the end-of-the-summer-reading-program-party-thing last night. It was enjoyable, although Tyler and I didn't win anything this year. They had a Jeopardy game and it was fun to see what I knew. I don't think I would have won (had I been a contestant) because there was this amazingly intelligent lady playing, but I would have given her a run for her money. As it was, they added lifelines so the contestants could ask the audience if they didn't know an answer. I was very proud to have contributed in that respect. The category was Mystery (I think) and the question was "This author used to be a jockey but now writes mysteries involving horses." The contestants were stumped so they used a lifeline, and I swear I was the only person yelling from the audience. Does no one know Dick Francis?? He writes great mysteries. My mom introduced me to them and they are very exciting. So thanks mom: you made me look smart in a room full of people who claim to be readers. Okay, that sounds derogatory. I am actually very happy that so many people sign up for the program and that reading is happening at all (it is almost a lost art to some people) but it is telling that the number one reviewed book for the summer was, The Host by Stephenie Meyer.

Even as I speak of summer fading away, I will miss all the nice sunshine. I am blessed with A/C so I don't notice how hot it is some days. However I do notice the sunny skies. One of my favorite things in the world is when the sun comes out from behind a cloud and all the rooms in the house light up (as if the house was having a giant epiphany, or the Savior just entered the room). It is such a warm happy feeling. Ahh...

If you stop and think about it, it is rather ridiculous that all sitcoms have this silly laugh track in the background so people know when to laugh. The other evening, I couldn't hear the dialogue (because I was too far away) but I could hear the laugh track. It went off after every single line trying to spur the audience to laughter. I still think it is rather silly, but I guess it proves the point that it is more fun to laugh with someone.

My kids are coming back TODAY!! YAY!! That is NOT the tragedy. They are coming back early because a lady died in my mother-in-law's ward and Vicki is in charge of funeral organizing. So, I am very happy to be seeing my children again (and early) but I hate that it is at the expense of other peoples' happiness.

Blat. So my children are coming back (good thing) but it means the magic will end (bad thing). What magic, you might ask? Well, my mother-in-law is magic. Didn't I tell you? She potty trains my children in the blink of an eye, and yet, I can't seem to duplicate the feat. Last time the kids went up there, Robyn did not have to wear a diaper to bed (like she does at home). Wow, I thought: she has finally learned to go through the night. Um, no. She came back home and it was wet beds all over again.
So, of course, Robyn has not needed a diaper the entire time she has been up there. But even worse, Ivory has not needed one either. Ivory has been using the potty down here (nothing consistent), but miracle Grandma has worked her spell, and the child is potty trained. I feel terrible because I actually sit here wishing that Ivory would have an accident so Grandma could see that she really isn't ready yet (after all, if she were ready, I would have helped her figure it out), but no...instead I hear stories like everyone going to the zoo and Ivory asking to go potty. Well, they weren't near a potty so Grandma told her to wait. Ivory asked again later, but they still weren't near a bathroom so she was again told to hold it. Grandma may have been doubting her powerful influence by this point because she put Ivory in a diaper (just in case). However, they arrived home later and Ivory reminded Grandma about the potty, and sure enough, she had a dry diaper.
So, will I be able to replicate these amazing happenings when the girls get back...probably not. Yes, it makes me feel a bit like a failure, but what can you do? Maybe Vicki will let me borrow her magic wand.

Thanks for enduring the blathering. There are my thoughts for today.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A Daisy for My Daisy

Truthfully, Daisy will probably get so many daisy things throughout her life that she may get sick of it. But for me, it certainly isn't old yet. My mother-in-law sent daisies to me in the hospital and I thought it was so cute.
Now Tyler likes to buy me nice jewelry when I have my children. It is a little tradition he does and I love it. LOVE. IT. Of course, I don't have the best history of taking care of this jewelry he purchases, but I promise it is not on purpose.
When I had June, he bought me pearl earrings to represent his two pearls (me and June). Well, one of the pearls fell out of the setting. Lame (I don't blame myself in this case).
Next, when I had Robyn, Tyler bought me this beautiful Tanzanite bracelet (The one on the link is not quite right, but it reminds me of mine). I have not seen many pieces of jewelry that are as beautiful as that bracelet.

I lost it.

Let's have a moment of silence for my bracelet. I still want to cry when I think about it. If you ever happen to find a Tanzanite bracelet (what are the chances?), check with me please.
So then along came Ivory. I am sure Tyler was reconsidering by this time whether he wanted to buy me anything. But my darling husband bought me a diamond pendant with three diamonds representing my three beautiful girls. I really like it, but I don't wear it often for fear of losing it.
Now with Daisy, Tyler had something special in mind. He came to the hospital with silver daisy earrings which I wear all the time, but he told me that was not the thing he had planned to get me. Later when he found what he wanted, he bought me a beautiful white gold daisy pendant with a perfectly cut diamond in the center. It is petite like my little Daisy and I love it. It was hard to get a good shot of it because of the reflection, but here is a good idea of what it looks like (it obviously looks better on me!).

So I got a daisy to go with my Daisy. Like I said, I'm not sick of the idea yet, especially since daisies are one of my favorite flowers.
As for the jewelry, I am 2 for 4. Fifty percent is not terribly good. It is actually a failing grade. Guess I need to have some more kids to bring my percentage up.
Here are some more pictures of my darling girl.