Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Breakin' the Law

Sunday night, I was going through my "wallet" (I use the term very loosely as I don't have a true wallet-- just a zippered pouch thing) looking for something when I happened to take a glance at my license and saw something that made me gasp aloud (no, not my picture!).

I can't believe it! I have been Breakin' the Law, a la Judas Priest! As of my last birthday, my license is expired! (hopefully no local cops read my blog) So, today the morning will be spent at the DMV trying to once again become the law-abiding citizen that I am.

It shouldn't be too tough, considering the test is open book. Yes, I said open book! No wonder people complain about the drivers here-- none of them have ever had to learn the rules of the road!! Too bad everyone didn't get the chance to take Driver's Ed from the venerable Mr. Bates as I did. What an experience!

Well, I'm off to the DMV (crossing my fingers as I drive there without a valid license). Wish me luck!

**Edited to add: I ended up not having to take the test because my license had been expired less than 6 months (hooray!). The best part is that the small town DMV I visited had no wait, so it only took me 20 minutes or so (because I write so slowly). 

I made the mistake of wearing a blue shirt though, quite close to the color of the photo background, so my new license picture looks rather like my head and neck are just sprouting from nowhere. But at least my forehead isn't blindingly shiny like in my last photo. (I know, like anyone really cares!)

Friday, September 26, 2008

Mistaken Identity

I have started to wonder about Big's eyesight. In the past few weeks, he has identified Billy Blanks (of Tae Bo fame), the "Chocolate Santa" in my sister's Christmas picture and Will Smith as being Rophone. In each instance, Big pointed to the person pictured and said, "DADA!", and kept insisting even when I denied it (over and over and over). 

Those of you who know Rophone are aware that he is about as far from being African American as you can get (although Rophone claims that Big must just be able to see all the way into his soul), so I find this quite funny. 

I didn't find it quite as funny when, yesterday, Big pointed at a picture (a very small one, I must say) of George Bush and said, "MAMA!". Maybe it's time for a new haircut.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Toys Not Needed

I don't even know why I spend money on toys. They drive me crazy as they clutter my house from top to bottom and, as I was reminded this afternoon, toys really aren't needed for fun to be had.

I came upon Big in the kitchen, throwing a yam around and yelling, "Football!" with joy. It didn't seem to bother him at all that his football was an even lamer bouncer and roller than a real one would be. Instead, he laughed happily each time the yam landed with a thud on the kitchen tile.

It got me started thinking. I think I'll rid the house of all the toys that annoy and replace them with hardy fruits and vegetables. That way, my house may be cluttered for a little while with them, but soon they'll be eaten and my house will be clean. 

The kids will be so excited to get new types of toys with the different seasons. Apples and winter squash in the fall, citrus in the winter....  

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Poor Bruce

I had a funny interaction with Ginger and Pen last Friday-- it still makes me laugh when I think about it. I was dropping the girls off at school when it happened.

Ginger was getting out of the car when she pointed out the janitor and said, "That's Bruce the Tall Guy" (she said it as though it was his title, not just a description of height). She then paused very dramatically, got a solemn look on her face and whispered, "He's the one with The Disease!" 

Pen gave a huge sigh from the back seat and yelled at Ginger as she was shutting the door, "I told you it's not a real disease, Ginger!" Curiosity piqued, I asked Pen what disease Bruce has. I about died laughing when she said, "It's White Man's Disease, Mom! I keep telling her it just means you're uncoordinated!" Pen was clearly exasperated. 

Speaking of kids saying funny things.... Around here a lot of universities and high schools put a letter high on the mountain (to mark their territory or something). This morning, Bud was looking at the "V" on the mountain that we can see from our house and said, "I can see the "V" on the mountain, Mom! (pause) I think it's just a sticker."

(Why do things always seem funnier when you're there?)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Ring

A few days ago, Pen unearthed a ring that I purchased a few years ago, but haven't worn in ages. I really like the ring-- it's colorful and bright and is made of chunky plastic. I think it's cute, so gave in to Pen's urging to wear it. 

Here's the ring:

I slipped the ring on the middle finger of my right hand and went about my day. Not too long after I put the ring on, I realized that Big was in need of a diaper change. 

I got him all ready for the wipe-down-- feet in left hand, diaper open-- and reached for a wipe from the container..... only then to notice that the wipe had slithered back down inside the little hole (I hate it when that happens!)! 

So, I did what we all do in that situation. I stuck the pointer and middle fingers of my right hand down inside the little wipe container hole and groped for the next wipe. Of course, while all this is going on, Big is trying to flip over, kick his feet out of my grasp, etc, and to make matters worse, the wipe was proving more difficult than usual to pincer. 

I stretched my fingers in for one last and desperate grab, only to have my ring slide through the hole with a little..POP! It took me no time at all to realize that I was stuck! I couldn't pull my ring back out of the hole, or pull my finger out of the ring! Big, being the smart boy that he is, seemed to realize the same and renewed and increased his efforts to get away (this is where I said, "UH, OH!"). 

Panic quickly set in. I was using my left forearm to try and keep Big from flipping, began praying that my grip on his feet would hold as we struggled above the open poopy diaper-- all the while flapping my right hand around trying to detach the wipe container! 

This is me with a crack in my voice as I try to distract Big so he'll hold still... "Hold still, Big!" (flap, flap, flap)...  "Do you want to sing a song?" (flap, flap, flap!!).... "A, B, C, D..ugh!" (FLAP!)....  "Okay, how about if we count to 10?!!!" (FLAP! FLAP! FLAP!) Finally, with one last wavering yell, I was able to dislodge the wipe container and conclude our business. (Whew!)

I think I won't be wearing that ring again until Big's potty trained.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Sour Cream Cone

There was a little mix-up at dinner tonight. Big refused to eat and kept chanting "Cone, cone, cone..." It took me a while to realize that he thought the sour cream I served the kids with their quesadillas was ice cream, so he wanted it on a cone (I mean, all creams are the same, right?). Luckily, all it took was a taste to convince Big that he didn't want a sour cream cone after all. 

Bud was just telling me how cool I am. It made me feel pretty good until he said, "You're so cool (followed by vague gestures toward my body)......you're LARGE!" How very true. 

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My New Invention

As I watched Rophone mow the lawn tonight, I could tell he wasn't enjoying himself. Knowing he isn't likely to try mowing in a muumuu, I set my mind to thinking of some other way to make mowing the lawn a more enjoyable task. 

I came up with the answer! The most perfect invention! A bubble mower attachment for real lawn mowers! Can't you just see the smile on Rophone's face as he mows while surrounded with floating, glistening bubbles? Bubbles make everyone happy! (Just imagining it made me laugh, I know that for sure! Can you imagine?!) I want to do it for real, you know, so I'd better start work on the prototype!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I finally went to visit Rophone at work today. Considering that he has been there for a year and a half, it was long overdue. I was in the neighborhood getting my hair cut, so I figured the boys and I might as well stop by for a tour.

In my mind I had always pictured Rophone's workplace as one with a lot of windows and light... you know, pleasant. In reality, he works in a windowless studio, reached by windowless, hospital-like corridors. The recycled air makes it feel as though he is toiling away while traveling on some behemoth airplane to nowhere. Being the natural light loving outdoor girl that I am, I couldn't take it, and now feel bad knowing where I am sending Rophone each day.

It is quite the place, though. Huge by anyone's standards, I'd say. I think I was most amazed by the main floor bathroom that I made use of. I almost got lost! I just had to take a count of the number of stalls.....45!! I was tempted to take a total count for the building, but that will have to wait for another time. The poor men only have 10 stalls in their main floor bathroom (the awful bathroom discrimination that men are forced to suffer!).

I was quite dismayed to find that the bathroom stalls all lacked something that I consider necessary for a pleasant public bathroom experience, however.... paper seat covers. Perhaps our leaders are sending us the message that not only are we to be pure in heart, but also pure of bum. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A New Attitude

The house has been bursting at the seams with attitude this week. Bud has joined the FINE! wagon, and even Big chimed in tonight (although his "PINE!" only made me laugh. It is so much cuter from a one year old when mispronounced and said with a smile).

I don't know how many times this week I have suggested that we all take deep breaths and chill out. Too much snapping, reacting, frustration and anger for sure. We need ourselves a new attitude. (Deep breaths.... deep breaths ....deep breaths.) 

Monday, September 15, 2008

Family Night

Before dinner, we decided to go outside to play ball for FHE. I took a few pictures before heading inside to start preparing the meal.

Here are some serious ball players waiting for the pitch:

I headed inside to make the kids some grilled cheese for dinner (I neglected to leave enough time for much else!), so Pen decided to take over the camera duties.

Here are some of the pictures she snapped:

I think we may have a budding photographer on our hands! Nice shots, Pen!

At dinner, Pen protested eating the crusts of her grilled cheese. Rophone urged her to eat them and Pen exclaimed, "I only like banana bread and chocolate muffin crusts!" Awesome.

The New Assistants

I'm at Surgeon Bud's office right now. I figure I'll post something while I wait-- you know how doctors offices can be. I never used to have to wait when I came to Surgeon Bud's, but now that he has his new assistants it seems that I never see him in person and I just wait ages for one of the assistants to come in-- either Sister Jensen, Christine, Shawn Johnson or Nastia Liukin. 

I hate the waiting, but there is an upside. It seems that now they serve food. I think I'll have the pancakes.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

What IS That Sound?!

I keep hearing this funny whistling sound. I finally realized it's the wind blowing between my ears. Sorry, folks. I'm empty. 

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Nap Explained

Bud asked me to measure him this morning. I was surprised, since he hates doing it, but I obliged. It has only been 10 days since I measured him last (Sept. 1st--the day Pen officially measured 4' 9" and was able to ride without a booster!), so I wasn't expecting much. 

Imagine my shock to see that Bud has grown a little more than 1/2"!! That's pretty good for 10 days! I guess that explains the naps. I see the growing room in the pants I just bought him slipping away.... 

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Spectacularly Unspectacular

It seems that I have been tagged. Apparently, I am supposed to post 6 unspectacular things about myself. You can blame my sister, Martha, for the things you are about to learn here. I know you all thought I was spectacular all of the time..... so I hope this doesn't crush you too badly.

6 Unspectacular Things About Me:

1. I like vegetables.
2. I am a terrible cook when pregnant. (I'm too scatterbrained. I forget ingredients, burn things, etc.)
3. I can't lead music.
4. I drive a minivan (I always swore I never would, and am often shocked when I get out and am reminded what it is I have been driving around!)
5. I say "I'm sorry" too much.
6. I like to hang out with my family.

There you go. Wow! I know.

Here are the terms and conditions of the meme thing:

Link the person who tagged you.
Mention the rules on your blog.
List 6 unspectacular things about you.
Tag 6 other bloggers by linking them.

Breakfast, In Three Attempts

It took me 3 tries to eat breakfast this morning. 

After all the kids were fed, and the girls were off to school, I finally got a chance to toast myself a bagel. As I sat down to eat, I was surrounded-- a boy on each side, mouths open. Waiting.

Once the bagel had been devoured (very little of it by me, by the way), I decided to toast another half FOR MYSELF, to try to assuage my still hungry tummy. Did I get any of that bagel, either?! NOOO-oooo! And these boys had supposedly already eaten their fill with their own breakfasts!

I finally just gave up and poured myself a bowl of boring cereal. It worked. The boys quickly lost interest and it was mine! ALL MINE!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Rare Sight

This is a rare sight to be seen anymore-- Bud napping during the day:

Watching Bud sleeping, I was having one of those "Mommy moments" where I was in awe of how beautiful he is, wondering how I ended up with him....blah, blah, blah (you moms out there know what I'm talking about). I couldn't resist taking his picture, of course.

It's so odd for Bud to take naps anymore. I think he has taken maybe 10 this whole year, and 2 of them have been in the past week! He ate a TON today, too. I think a growth spurt is coming on (why, oh why does it always happen right after purchasing new clothes or shoes?).

Here is an awesome Mr. Potato Head creation done together by Bud and Big this evening:  

I think that probably, even as a child, I had to have the appendages in their proper spots. I was never one that could color the sky green or a horse purple (not that I remember, anyway). I am so glad to see that my children are more free with their creativity. I hope it stays that way!

Rophone and I used to color together while we dated. It was a great way to talk and get to know each other. We mostly used Sesame Street coloring books, and even then we made a great team. 

Rophone colored in ways that I never would imagine doing--he would give Ernie Plaid pants, when the pants had no markings on them to show they should be plaid!!! (Crazy stuff, I know!) He made Bert look much hipper than I ever thought he could be! (I colored Bert a lot, too. I was good at making him look boring) 

So, Rophone colored the clothing, accessories, etc., while I spent my time blending crayon colors to get the characters' fur and skin (can It even be called that?!) just the right shade to match how they appear on TV. I also was queen of the walls and sky. Our pictures were beautiful!

We work well together, and I think maybe we've rubbed off on each other a little--in a good way. I think I can reach past previously set boundaries with a little more ease than before. Bert better watch out! Next time, I'm giving him plaid pants with a polka dot shirt!

Monday, September 8, 2008

No Better Than a Hole in the Head

I know that there are a lot of things better than a hole in the head. The thing I have right now really isn't any better, though. What I have is, well...... a hole in the head. Don't worry, it's just a small one.

I was unloading the dishwasher last night and dropped something on the floor. I crouched to retrieve it, and on the way back up I impaled my head a bit with the corner of the open cupboard door. Darn that cupboard for being so spacious that the door actually extends past the end of the counter when open. I wouldn't have hit it otherwise. 

I think I may have a certain greasy area of hair on my scalp for a few days (scrubbing clean that part of my head this morning was quickly aborted-- I ended up performing more of an air-pat above it), but otherwise I am raring to go. Just with a little hole in my head.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Nothing Much

Not much has been going on lately (in my brain, I mean), so I really don't have anything to post. I think I'm just fried. The long hours Rophone has been working are taking their toll. He was gone all day yesterday, and is managing to do the same today. Yay.

At least I was able to get Big to take an early nap today, so he was much happier at church than he might have been otherwise. He didn't even mind being left alone in Relief Society while I took Bud to the bathroom. Big did manage to chant "Done!" for about the last 20 minutes of sacrament meeting, though. It went something like this, "Done! ...Done-ah!!... Done-done!! ....I'M DONE!!!" (Amen! to that one, Big!) 

Well, it's been a long day already, but I guess my 5 minute break is over. Better go finish out my day. Hopefully we'll all survive.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

An Honest Surgeon

There are so many good things I can say about my surgeon. He seems to really know what he's doing and, best of all, is very honest. Today, Surgeon Bud said to me, "Now don't worry, this WILL hurt!" How refreshing.

Tantrum Style Points

Big is currently trying to develop his own tantrum style. He seems to be experimenting with all different types to see which is the best fit.  He used to do the flop on the ground and kick his feet. He has tried to stomp his feet in frustration, but that usually just ends in a fall to his butt as he loses his balance. 

He has been trying out a sitting tantrum which is reserved solely for his car seat, stroller and high chair. Big flings his head from side to side rapidly while yelling his head off. This one actually makes me laugh, and always earns him high tantrum style points.  

Most recently, when it comes to tantrums of the standing variety, he has been throwing his head backwards with all of his might. But, after hitting a few walls and door frames with the back of his head, and realizing the near impossibility of maintaining his balance if he does it while standing, he seems to have developed a new tantrum style. 

Big's new style is one that I have been hoping would never come about....the head butt. Within a five minute period today (before I managed to get him a snack), he head butted my laptop, the banister and one of my front teeth. Ouch! Not the best idea if one already has a head wound as he does (but, hey, he's only one! He needs a little more time to gain the ability to think more logically. Of course, if he's like me, that may never come!)

Hopefully he will realize sooner rather than later that the whole head butt thing is not all it's cracked up to be. Really, I think Big's original style of flopping on the ground is the least painful and definitely the most restful (I mean, I'll take any chance I can get to lie down for a moment!). Maybe he'll go back to that one. I can only hope.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Darn That Big Head!

Most of you folks are probably familiar with the toddler face-plant. At times, especially during a growth spurt, it can be quite a common occurrence. There are many different causes of the face-plant-- the body going too fast for the feet, tripping, no apparent reason....but the one I'm talking about is caused by the large toddler head. Yes, that big head.

The face-plant I'm referring to usually occurs when the toddler is bending down to retrieve something, or when getting up from the ground. It's that perilous position, with hands and feet on the ground, head down that does them in. Their proportionally huge noggin pulls them past the point of balance, to a place from which there is no pleasant return--the face-plant.

Big fell on the sidewalk while he was outside with Rophone, with no apparent injury....until he tried to get up. That big head just pulled him over, so now he looks like this:

He seems to have recovered for the most part. I'm sorry your head's so big, Big!