Nov 29, 2013

Ah, Thanksgiving

It's just us this year: seven little people celebrating Thanksgiving in a cozy house in Colorado Springs.  We have had such a nice, quiet day.  My Thanksgiving goals: stay in my sweats all day, eat lots of pie, and catch up on my blog. Check, check, check!

This morning Garry and Zach went to our ward's Turkey Bowl, an annual flag football game.  Zach earned the MVP award for his "gorilla glue" hands that caught every pass. Garry was glad that Zach was his first draft pick.  They had tons of fun.

Yesterday I made homemade stuffing and crescent rolls from tried-and-true family recipes.  I also tried new recipes for pie crust, sour cream lemon pie, and banana cream pie.  They were all fantastic!  Today we cooked a turkey breast in our long-neglected rotisserie grill. Garry's marinade and butter rub made it the most finger-lickin-good turkey I've ever had. Garry's mashed potatoes and gravy did not disappoint either. I brought out a fancy tablecloth (Lexi: "What's that thing on the table?") and our crystal goblets for the feast.

Before we ate, I wanted to take a family picture.  We couldn't find charged batteries for our camera with a timer, so we opted for a cell phone shot of just the kids.  I made the mistake of asking Lexi to un-tuck her shirt from her clashing skirt.  She burst into tears.  Dinner was getting cold, so this is our family portrait for the day.  Excellent!

As we ate, we discussed our blessings, especially those we take for granted.  Thanksgiving will close with the Ravens vs. Steelers football game on TV and some family together time. Being together is pretty high on my gratitude list.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Nov 28, 2013

kate says...

Kate is equal parts mischievous and hilarious.  Yesterday Garry said she knew the GPS coordinates for the candy I have stashed in my church bag for the Beehives.  She raided it more than once, which was so frustrating!  However, the other day, she made me laugh so hard!  We were driving home from something and Lexi said she had to use the bathroom, but that she thought she could "hold it" for a few more minutes. Kate immediately said, "I can hold it for you!"  I'm actually laughing about it as I type.  She was so sincere!

Much of what makes us laugh around here is the things Kate says.  She says some funny words that I want to remember. Unfortunately my list of her unique vocabulary has disappeared twice.  I imagine I'll keep adding to this list as my limited memory improves.

Angel Muffin=English muffin
Uh-ola bar=Granola Bar

And some phrases:

Yeah, sure
Hold you stand up=hold me while you are standing, not sitting
Tan I {insert something she wants to do} like 40 minutes?

This conversation captures another theme in Kate's life:

Lexi: Mom!  Kate peed!
Me: Peed where?
Lexi: Over there!
Me: Where over there?
Lexi: She's right there, Mom.  She peed in her diaper.
Me: You mean she's wearing a diaper, and she peed in it?
Lexi: Yes. I could feel it when she was sitting on my back.

Kate often takes it upon herself to change her wet diapers, and to remove the poopy ones before alerting me to the situation.  And yet she won't sit on the potty.  We're in a funky in-between stage on the issue.  I probably need to buckle down and give potty training another go.  Maybe over Christmas break.  Maybe next summer....

Kate has the best laugh EVER.  It's this jolly, gut-busting super-giggle that makes me so happy.

Kate currently favors climbing pantry and refrigerator shelves and dresser drawers, changing her clothes five times a day, smearing diaper cream everywhere, filling the bathroom sink with water, emptying brand-new toilet paper rolls, and trying to fix chocolate milk for herself.  On the upside, she can put on her own shoes.

She's darling, for sure, but exhausting.  I'm pretty sure she could tell you that herself.

Tyler in the news

Tyler's fifth grade year is going well.  He's happy at school and has good friends there.  He participates in two extra-curricular activities that he loves: news crew and art. 

Anyway, here are some videos of Tyler's news broadcasts at school.  He's a cute little news anchor!

September 16: 

September 30:

October 28:

November 11:

I put on my Mean Mom hat and make Tyler continue with piano lessons, which he hates.  He's got natural talent, so I won't let it go, but my incentive programs aren't working.  I often wonder if paying someone else to teach him would work better.  Any volunteers?

Tyler loves loves loves to read.  He is especially fond of fantasy, but recently started the Kid Lawyer series by John Grisham and is hooked.  When I asked him what he wanted for Christmas, he didn't have any ideas. I asked him if books would be OK, and he was thrilled.  I guess we have an easy job this year!

Poor Ty struggles with being a younger brother. Oh, he is so jealous of all that Zach can do and have. Zach has developed a bit of a social life, which always leaves Tyler feeling friendless and alone. He believes such fun things will never, ever happen for him.  It especially kills him to see Zach have a phone.  I'm not sure how to help him.  Life mostly isn't fair, and Tyler is unfortunately not learning that lesson very gracefully at age nine.

One of Ty's favorite things to do is cook.  He is especially fond of making breakfast.  He's getting really good at pancakes, French toast, and German pancakes.  He makes a mean chocolate chip cookie, too.  I'm glad he is following Garry's lead in the kitchen.  I hope to train him to take over dinner soon!  Haha...

Tyler is the most affectionate person in our household.  He needs LOTS of hugs and positive affirmations. He loves to cuddle on the couch and hang on me when I'm working on the computer and huge me from the back wherever I am.  Sometimes I struggle with this because I'm the opposite of affectionate, but I try hard to give him what he needs.  This seems to be a very emotional season for Tyler.  Hugs are the least I can do for my sweet little boy.

Cell phone stories: Thanksgiving edition

It's Thanksgiving, and among a thousand other things, I am grateful for the gift of free time.  Today I am going to catch up in this one small area of my life.  Here we go.

I am thankful for Kate's leash.  It makes waiting for 45 minutes at the JoAnn cut counter (Christmas projects!) a little more bearable.

I am thankful for paint, and for a helper who thinks that covering sharpie and dings and scratches and dirty spots all over the house is a fun Saturday job.  And also for a husband who patches dings and holes and scratches all over the house so I can paint them.

I am grateful for patience and creative discipline.  Lately Zach has refused to get in the van if he can't sit where he wants.  When he refused a ride home from school after being denied the front seat, he made a scene and then walked all the way home (about 1.2 miles).  The natural consequence for this recurring behavior is that Zach gets to walk where he wants to go, including school, for two weeks.  This was fine and good on the first day, but we woke up to snow on the second day.  Never has it been so hard to enforce a consequence.  It was 17 degrees and windy.  Rough morning for everyone!  Apparently walking to school didn't scar Zach for life, because he walked home from church--by choice--in the same weather two days later.  On a related note: I am thankful for friends who will listen to me and help me develop patience and creative discipline.

I am grateful for better days, too.  On this night I took Zach out for a haircut (I paid), shopping (he paid--he had birthday money to burn), and dinner (I paid).  He spent a lot of money on clothes for himself.  I am thankful that I spent more on Qdoba nachos than I did on my scores at the Salvation Army: a shirt, a sweater, and a skirt for $6.99.

I am thankful for the online tutorial that is going to help me finish my reupholstering project.  I am also thankful for the website that is mailing me upholstery fabric samples.  They are purple. 

I am grateful for Lexi's awesome preschool teacher and fun little class.  She is so happy at school.  I loved her little Fall Feast and program last week.

I am grateful for Lexi's darling ballet teacher.  Last week Lexi was in a major funk when we arrived at class, so I planned to wait with her on the couch until she was ready to dance.  Miss Amy invited Kate, who always wears a purple tutu on ballet days, to participate in class.  I think it was the best hour of Kate's life. Lexi danced for the last five minutes of class.

I am grateful for my church callings, past and present.  On Sunday I was released from being the Beehive adviser. While I love (love!) my girls and fellow leaders, I have known for awhile that a change was coming. I am now the Primary secretary, which offers a good change of pace.  I am looking forward to something more behind-the-scenes and administrative.  The presidency I joined is made up of three awesome ladies and I'm excited to work with them.  I feel like I have moved to another planet, though.  The Young Women already seem so far away, and I haven't missed a Sunday yet!  These are my notes from my first meeting with Sandi, the president.  My to-do list is a mile long, but I am chipping away at it.  I kind of love spreadsheets...

I am grateful for YMCA basketball.  I love the way Gavin's confidence on the court is growing.  Kids his age are so cute and innocent.  Small things are huge victories, so they are fun to watch.  Zach's team hasn't had much success, but he is learning his strengths.  Zach's coach keeps putting him in the low post position because he's so tall, but he's a much better point guard.

I am grateful for good behavior in grocery stores, even when it comes as a result of a bribe.

I am grateful for the simple pleasures that children enjoy.  Playing outside on a snow-delay school morning was so exciting for these two little monkeys.  Snow!  Hooray!  It really is beautiful.  I am thankful for warm clothing and a furnace and hot chocolate.

I am thankful for my van.  I am also thankful for good mechanics and enough money to patch up my van after I skidded on the ice and slammed it into a curb.  Being without a vehicle large enough for our family for four days was rough!  I am thankful for Mindy for helping me pick up the van from one mechanic to the other. And for her willingness to text about random things at all hours of the day.

I am thankful that Kate naps most days, even though she destroys her room on days that she doesn't nap.

I am thankful for the temple, and for the sweet experience we had there on Tuesday, when Zachary did baptisms for the dead for the first time.  I figure if we can be in the temple together, then our family is doing well enough.

I am thankful for this Thanksgiving Day, not only because I get to eat these delicious rolls and the two homemade pies in my fridge, but because I am blessed in countless ways and I'm grateful for a day to celebrate them.

Nov 18, 2013

Apology Letters

Dear couple sitting next to us in church,

I'm sorry.  Just really, really sorry.  I avoided all eye contact with you and sent many a frustrated eye-roll at the ceiling as I tried to manage the small people who alternately ALL wanted to sit by me/you and then down on the other end of the bench, raising Cain as they walked to and fro.  Good grief.  It was like a clown car on a seesaw.  I promise to leave you alone next week, even if it means sitting in the back on the hard chairs.

The mom of those kids
Dear Gavin,

Sorry, bud.  Your hair is not turning brown, even when you plaster water on it.  I'm not sure why you are so disappointed.

Dear new-to-me chair,

Sorry for taking you apart.  Even as I am painstakingly (no really, it actually hurts) removing all of your staples and brackets, I feel like I'm stripping your dignity, one layer at a time.  Now you're standing naked in my living room and I want to cover you with a sheet.  And sorry also for being really weird about this.

Novice reupholsterererer
Dear Applebees,

Sorry I asked you to reserve seating for 16 when only 9 people actually came for dessert.  That was awkward.

Heidi, party of...?
Dear pants,

I'm sorry you are struggling to stay aloft when so much fat is trying to push you down.  It's easier to buy a belt than to exercise, so I'm going to the store tomorrow.  Good luck.

Muffin top
Dear Allison,

Sorry I quit physical therapy "against medical advice."  I know you want me to keep doing my core exercises, but my hip and back have felt better in the last two weeks than they have in the last year, and I think I have determined the connection.  Love you anyway.

Former Friday patient
Dear Beehives,

Sorry for sitting awkwardly in my seat every week.  My blasted feet don't reach the ground and I can't sit in those hard metal chairs very gracefully.  It's annoying, especially when people are looking at me.  Can't we just sit on the floor?

Sister B
Dear black pencil skirt,

Sorry for wearing you every.single.week to church.  I really need more skirts.  I guess if I really felt sorry for you I'd go shopping, but that would make me feel sorry for myself (see my letter to my pants), so I believe we are in what the cliche-ists refer to as a "Catch 22," whatever that means.  "Between a rock and a hard place" is just a dumb thing to say.  Maybe I should make up a euphemism for really stupid.  I'll work on that.

The lady with the super boring Sunday wardrobe
Dear Saturday,

Sorry for cramming so much into your scant hours.  Who knew that so many lame/menial/annoying tasks could be smooshed into one day? That must have been exhausting for you.  Oh wait, that was me.

Weekend Warrior
Dear Gavin and Lexi,

Sorry that I'm taking all of your stuff away tomorrow.  It's alllllll over your floor AGAIN, even though we cleaned it alllllll up yesterday.  I'm not a huge fan of you making messes just for the sake of making messes, so I figure if we eliminate the source of the messes, then the messes will go away.  That might mean you'll be out of underwear after two days, but what the heck.  There are pull-ups in the drawer.

The management
Dear Not Me,

Sorry for discovering your secret today.  Don't pretend you didn't fill that tall laundry basket with all manner of household belongings and hide it in the utility closet a couple of months ago.  You must have been so disappointed that your family recovered long-lost items like pajamas, a beloved dress-up gown, brand-new-back-then school shoes, and my favorite sandal.  I know you thrive on getting other people in trouble, and making other people miserable, etc., so I'm sorry for ruining your fun.  But seriously, don't ever do that again.

Secret Finder
Dear Zach,

Sorry for not believing you that you "lost" your white Sunday shirt.  How is that even possible?  Sorry for not being willing to iron another too-small plaid shirt when you opted to wear that to church after rejecting the other shirt I ironed for you.  We all survived, but you had better find your shirt for next week.  Talk to Not Me and I'm sure it will show up.


Nov 15, 2013


It's a season of projects, and surely it's only going to get busier the next couple of months. 

I'm still working like mad on Crèche posters and invitations. The approval process is slow, and my flaky brain has made some mistakes.  Posters are now hung throughout the community, and 1600 invitations will be distributed by full-time missionaries in the Colorado Springs mission, which has 60 companionships.  The first week of December I will be making name and story cards for about 500 nativities (Crèches) and indoor signage for the event, which happens in three weeks.

Tuesday evening (the night of Kate's Sharpie incident) was Young Women in Excellence, which is an event designed to celebrate the girls' experiences and accomplishments this year.  I recently wrote a song (which I thought I'd never do), and my friend Mindy sang it during the program.  I am doing the Personal Progress program with the girls, and this was one of my projects.  Writing music has tapped a part of me I didn't know existed.  It's been a neat experience.

Yesterday I bought myself another project: reupholstering two of these chairs. The acquisition of these chairs is kind of a funny story.  There's this house in the neighborhood of Lexi's preschool that I drive by six times a week. It often has random furniture in the yard, but no "for sale"  signs.  Yesterday these chairs were on the lawn.  After thinking about them all day, I decided to see if they were still there and ask about buying them.  The owner happened to be in her driveway when I got there.  She said I could have both for five bucks! Sweet!  They have great structure, and I think they will provide the extra seating in the living room that I have been craving.

Reupholstering is probably a larger job than I can handle. Just taking the staples out of the fabric has proved to be a Herculean task, and I'm nowhere near done. If you happen to have experience with this or other steps of the process and can offer tips, let me know.

Garry has a project too: he's been called to lead the ward's cub scout Bear den (Tyler's group) and teach Primary every week.  That makes Tuesday nights extra busy for us, but like everything else in life, we'll figure it out.

Just add it to her resume

Kate and I have reached a compromise on nap time.  She doesn't always sleep, but she will play in her room for at least an hour.  It's great.  Sometimes, though, she trashes her room, and on Tuesday she was apparently locked in her room with a Sharpie.  Not sure how that happened...or how I'm going to clean it up.

Oh brother! So much for Mom's great compromise.  The good news is that as I tucked her in for nap time the next day, Kate said to me, "I won't color on walls ever again. Just paper. Just paper."  and then she slept for two hours.  I guess we can be friends again.

Post edit: Today Kate squirted lotion in a 20-foot strip across the basement carpet.  When I was done scooping it up with a spoon, there was about a cup of lotion in my bowl.  ARGH!

Nov 14, 2013

Middle school mania

Zach is a busy kid.  He (voluntarily--his idea, actually) goes to a before-school band practice session at 7:00 a.m. He plays on the soccer team most days until 4:30 p.m. That's a long day for a 12-year-old.

On Tuesday nights he has mutual/scouts, and on Wednesdays and Saturdays he plays basketball on a YMCA team. On Friday afternoon he delivers the paper. He looks forward to the afternoons when he only has math homework (generally his only homework). 

Last week Zach went to High Trails, a four day, three night outdoor school just for sixth graders.  He had a fantastic time with his buddy, Eli, and his other friends. They hiked a lot, played cooperative games, and did things like orienteering and rock climbing.  What a great camp!  He came home utterly exhausted. Then he went to an all-day merit badge clinic the next day. 

Through it all, Zach has an awesome attitude.  He is mostly getting good grades (still working on a better attitude in math) and enjoying school.  We are proud of him.

Nov 10, 2013

Why is it?

Why is it that I would rather clean up this mess

than this mess?

I feel bad admitting it, but I'd make the same choice, as Garry said about bathing the children, "every day, and twice on Sunday."  Maybe I should stop asking why and just be glad I didn't do both tonight.

November Letters

Dear Luvs diapers,

I've been a loyal customer for 12 years.  However, this week you complicated my life.  Recently you changed the pattern on your diapers.  Instead of having a jolly dancing monkey only on the front of the diaper, you now have the same monkey on the front AND the back, and it is more difficult to determine which side is the front.  Yes, I am 34, and yes, I am diapering my fifth child. You probably think I should be more capable, but I'm telling you I have laid a diaper down backwards soooo many times in the last few days that I need to blame someone besides myself.  What few brains cells I still have I need to devote to things besides diapers.  I know this begs the question: Why don't I potty train Kate already?  I don't have a good answer for that.

A disgruntled mother
Dear family history missionaries,

The other night at dinner you challenged my family to learn some stories about our ancestors.  Because I am an obedient child, today I sat down to try and find something.  I did find interesting things about Eli Mundell and his posterity, but it's what I can't find that is vexing me.  If someone out there has a marriage record for Emma Mundell and Richard Stewart, I'd sure love to see it.

Family searcher
Dear Not Me,

This week you broke the garbage can, lost a shoe, ate the last of the Cinnamon Toast Crunch, left a banana peel on the family room carpet, peed all over the wall, lost my keys, and performed several other nefarious deeds that I can't think of right now.  I really don't need you stirring the pot.  Just cut it out.

Let's get real, though.  I know you didn't lose my keys.  That was me.

Yo mama
Dear movie theater,

We forked out the big bucks to see a current movie in your hallowed halls, but when we walked into Theater #4, it was completely full.  It's kinda ridiculous that when we went to exchange our tickets you charged a 3D upgrade fee for the only movie we could get into at that time.  That said, Gravity was pretty cool, despite being more intense than I like.  AND, we didn't pay a babysitter, since Zach and Tyler manned the fort while we were gone.  Woah.

The G is for Gravity daters
Dear Sandra Bullock,

I want your legs.  And also your flat stomach.  But I didn't like your hair cut in that movie.

Dear Garbage Man,

You didn't take my can of dried out paint last week.  Hopefully you don't see it this week inside the black trash bag.  Ha.

Sneaky McSneakerson
Dear Becky,

Thanks for painting my bathroom this week.  I love love love the color, and that you did all the work!  I will design a million party invitations for you if you'll trade me again for your painting services.  Heck, I'll do pretty much whatever you want in exchange for your painting services.  Thanks, friend.

Dear brain,

You are a whole lot of crazy in the middle of the night.  Good grief.  My friend tells me that my subconscious self is my therapist, since I work out all of my conflicts and angst through symbolic dreams.  I'm glad this friend can make sense of bunnies killing each other over a piece of garlic, a high school principal smoking pot, swimming with foggy goggles, driving through the desert while sobbing, and marrying a woman on the beach. All I know is that I wake up exhausted and confused.  Can I tell my internal therapist to shut up already?

Dear Cookies Kids,

First you lose the suit I ordered for Zach, and then you send a replacement that is totally defective.  Lesson learned: you get what you pay for.  Hmph.

Writer of the 1-star review
Dear Tuesday night,

You are already complicated with cub scouts and boy scouts and young women activities all on the same night.  You just got complicated-er because Garry has been called to be a scout leader.  I raised my hand to sustain him in his new calling, so I guess we will make it work.  But today I'm sad that his sudden responsibility means I'm going to miss a cello concert that I wanted to attend.  One day I will become a cultured human being.

Scout shuttler
Dear Kate,

You were being so darling last night and I had this blissful oh-my-gosh-I-just-love-you-so-much moment.  I wish that I could have bottled up that heart-bursting joy and given it to myself during the nine months before you were born, so that I could have gotten through your pregnancy with a little more grace.  Since I can't know the end from the beginning of all my hard things, I need to remember that one day, I'll have a happy moment stamped in my heart that erases the hurt.  You erase the hurt, Kate, and I love you for it.


Come one, come all

There's a really neat community event coming up in Colorado Springs.  Since I am playing a {very} small role on the committee that is organizing and presenting it, I hereby formally invite all of you to the Colorado Springs Creche Exhibit and Live Nativity on December 6th and 7th, and the Colorado Springs North Stake Christmas Music Program on December 15th. These events are all going to be amazing.

I will not elaborate on the rather extensive nature of this little advertising project, but here's the poster I designed that will hang in 25 public venues around town.  Kudos to PR guru Peggy Kinnaird for providing the text.

Please come!  You won't regret it.

Nov 7, 2013

Life with the Littles

It's no surprise that most of my photos are of Kate and Lexi. Gavin is the runner-up, with the older boys a distant fourth and fifth.  My bad.  But that's just life--the squeaky wheel gets the grease.

The squeakiest wheel is Crazy Kate.  The grocery store is my biggest nemesis, which is the primary reason we don't have decent food in the house.  Sometimes I am brave enough to attempt such an outing with my littlest darling.  Then this happens, and I realize that I am insane.

After the public experience above, I purchased a leash child safety harness to make outings more pleasant. The first two times we used it, Kate screamed so much I'm sure other store patrons were ready to call CPS. (Restrictions! Oh, the horrors!) Today was the magical day, though, and the leash child safety harness worked like a charm.  I felt like I was walking a dog, but I totally didn't care. The thought of three leashes child safety harnesses is very appealing. 

The other day I overheard these gems from the kids: 

Tyler: I think that hope is the most important thing in the world.
Gavin: Well, I think a flying pony is the most important thing.

While playing "house" with Lexi and pretending to answer the phone...
Gavin: Lexi can't play.  She's practicing her cooking, and then she needs to get her driver's license.

Kate: Haha.  My bum burpeded.

Gavin was so excited to help me rake the leaves on Saturday. It's a big job, and he petered out after a while.  Luckily Garry and Lexi helped in the home stretch.  It was c-c-c-old that day.

Kate's stubborn refusal to take naps is rather wearisome for all of us.  I love days when she takes a nap in the car or just plays in her room during "nap time."  It's such a relief for everyone when the afternoon can pass more pleasantly.

At the doctor's office the other day I was pretty close to a breakdown after all the shenanigans with these girls. Such insanity in a small room! Fortunately the PA was charming and non-judgmental.

Lexi is slowly adapting to her winter wardrobe.  She is fond of the monochromatic look, as you can see.  I have very different opinions about what makes a cute outfit, but I try to be content with covered legs and feet.  We had a breakthrough this week when Lexi chose to wear jeans and a long-sleeve shirt at the same time.  Wow. She also kept her tights on for the duration of preschool two days in a row.  

I suppose that someday I won't relish in milestones like jeans and leashes, but I guess that means I'll be facing bigger things, like peer pressure and dating and driving.  Is that why people always tell me to cherish these years?

Nov 6, 2013


Zach was ordained a deacon and received the Aaronic priesthood on Sunday, October 27.  Garry performed the ordination in our living room, since we had stake conference that day.  We were so grateful that Garry's parents and mine made the effort to participate in that ordinance and our celebration of such a fine son!  We had a wonderful weekend together.

Last Sunday, Zach passed the sacrament at church for the first time.  It was a tender moment for Garry and me.  Our boy is so grown up, and even on the most trying of days, we know he is a wonderful young man with a bright future.

Nov 4, 2013


Recently I participated in a two-week study on all things digital--my tools and devices and social networks--that I use on a daily basis.  Participating in this research made me much more mindful of the way that digital communication dominates my life.  Things like Facebook and Instagram and blogging and texting connect me to people in ways that feed my sense of belonging and help me be part of others' lives that isn't possible any other way.  For a long time I have justified my addiction to such things, but I am starting to re-examine my behavior.

Another thing that has been on my mind is my need for validation from my peers.  When I have a little experience or thought, whether frustrating or funny or strange or happy, my immediate impulse is to share it on Facebook, through my blog, or via text to a friend.  When I don't get a response, or don't get one that I am expecting or needing, I feel frustrated or hurt or even embarrassed for being vulnerable in such a way. Why is that?  Why do I feel such a need for feedback from friends and acquaintances through social media? What does that say about my confidence and self-worth?

And then there are the big experiences.  Sometimes I share too much and feel the sting of regret (my Oct. 31 post is the perfect example).  People just don't need to know about my mental status or when I lose my temper.  Some of the dark corners of my life are better left in the dark. I can be honest without over-sharing. I need to work on that.

I think this behavior and attitude extend into my non-digital life.  There have been many times in the last couple of years when I really wished someone would reach out to me on a bad day instead of me soliciting some form of help.  I have never understood why that hasn't happened in my hour of need.  Yesterday a friend who knows about those feelings told me that there is danger in such an expectation.  I tend to agree. Perhaps there are times to be alone instead of surrounded.  Perhaps there are times to be still and private instead of expressive and public.

At the moment I don't have answers to any of my questions, but I do think I will be stepping back at least a bit from my digital life.  I will continue with my blog, as I enjoy the family history it creates.  I feel a connection to my posterity, those who might learn something from my experience or at least get to know their ancestors--my little family--in a somewhat meaningful way.  But that exercise will be just for me.  If you want to join my journey, I'll enjoy your company.  You just might have to tell me in person that you're coming along for the ride.

Nov 1, 2013


Happy Halloween from the Wicked Witch and her five little monsters.

Halloween things to remember:

*Gavin lost his mummy hat at the ward Fall Festival
*Kate is our fourth child to wear the frog costume
*Lexi's Tinkerbell costume was custom-made by Garry's lovely and talented sister
*I added an inner fleece vest so it wouldn't itch
*Zach was furious that his vest arrived in a one-size-fits-all style, but was appeased by Garry's cool white tie
*Tyler begged to be a unicorn and was thrilled with the homemade version (thanks, Connie, for the last-minute help)
*Lexi missed her ballet Halloween party because I lost my keys, and Gavin missed his class party because he had a wicked cough and had to stay home
*It was cold and windy on Halloween night, so everyone sported extra layers.  Lexi wore her wings on the outside of her coat.  The adults huddled by the fire pit in the Teeples' driveway, which helped a little.
*Tyler was upset because he had the least amount of candy when we got home--Zach had nearly triple the loot
*Sigh of relief--it's over!

pass it on!

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