it's not a birthday without a party

the party on monday: i asked the girls to put up one finger for phoebe's age- apparently lucy is thinking about joining a gang instead.
SOOOOOO...we finally had phoebe's birthday bash. as i was setting out the gazillion food items lucy asked, "mom! what games are we going to play?" and i told her, "honey, i don't throw those kinds of parties". seriously, i don't. because when i give directions it sounds like i'm adolf hitler and your getting inducted into the third reich. geez, gangs, natzis? this was supposed to be a fun post.

so yeah, my sister in laws throw UBER fun birthday parties with games and trivia and all sorts of fanciful things. i, on the other hand, just feed you to death and have wheelbarrows at the front door to roll you to your car. man, if we combined forces we could entertain the entire west coast together.

but i do love having happy people in my home, and so far my maturity level only knows how to make people happy with food. i'm researching other ways but they all seem to involve jail as the end result. so hey, cooking is my strong suit.

we had a blast, we loved seeing phoebe get passed from person to person to be pinched, squeezed, squished and loved. babies really do make the world a perfect place. and i'm glad they only turn one once, because i'm pooped. i'd post more photos but ty took MY camera hunting with him. the nerve.


we have this thing about sugar...

phoebe is our third child. and for all three children we wait until their 1st birthday for them to have sugar*. yup, no cookies, cake, whipped cream, ice cream, popsicles, lollipops, brownies, soda pop, chocolate milk, maraschino cherries, milk shakes,... NADA, not even juice people. JUICE!

i'm thinking we get away with it so well we should keep it up until their, oh, i don't know, 28th birthday or something? i mean, they do have 50% of their genes from me.
but it sure was cute watching phoebe eat her first ice cream on her birfday. cute. cute. cute.

* our theory behind the "no sugar" policy? it has produced some pretty excellent, non-picky eaters. for example: abby would NOT leave the grocery store last week until we had spinach in the cart.


P to the H to the O to the E to the B to the E

phoebes, guess what? it's yo birthday!! i know it doesn't feel like it because mommy got you out of your crib and lay on the floor sleeping while you played this morning.
but its' true, today is a special day. your day!
here our some of our favorite pictures of you from this year-you're one now:

happy birthday to our happy, happy, baby phoebe.


this saturday

we painted the house. well, the front of the house. we have had this on our to-do list since day one.

at first we tried this lovely green i picked out. it was awful. ty said he is not living in an "army" house.

then we tried white. i've always wanted to live in a white house. i love white. LOVE. it didn't work either.

so we ended up with a tan color much like the color it is now, go figure.

it was so frustrating for me that the color was wrong on the first two tries. but this house has always been full of surprises. why would it work out? that wouldn't make any sense at all. after 4 hours of painting and deliberating on color schemes i threw up my hands and yelled, "and THIS is why people live in subdivisions!"  seriously though, no major decisions are needed there. lawn? check. house color? check. homeowners association? double check. 

but you guys, guess what the color we ended up with is called? ty came home from the hardware store with his 2 gallons of tan paint and said "guess what the name of this color is."  "i don't know, what?" i said.  "nevada tan!" he chuckled. "you mean, 'aka dirt'" i replied.

yes, our state pride has reached another level. even our home is Nevada Tan.


abby decided to have fun with the sprinklers while we painted. 
i don't think this girl will ever lack for ideas.
she walked around the entire time saying "tut tut tut tut, looks like rain!" 
and then she pooped in the swimsuit. yes.


i had a dream last night that angelina jolie and brad pitt adopted abby from us. it took me two weeks to figure it out, and when i did they had a mural on the wall of all their kids with a number of where they were in line. abby was number 7, and i was pissed. i stole her back all mission impossible style.

because abs is just too awesome to let anyone take away from us.
i mean, c'mon, she can lift 2lb weights.

and i'd steal this one away if they took her too.
she crawls laps like it's an olympic event.

and this one too.
she's my little handy helper now.
so back off angelina. because i kind of like my kids & i'd totally win if we got in a scrap.
and now, i'm thinking maybe i shouldn't eat a mango right before going to bed?

*ps* you guys, SO MANY WOMEN came to my zumba class last night.
like, SO MANY (said in my dionne voice from clueless).
i freaked out and forgot almost everything. bahhhhh!


speaking of feet

i finally got some pictures of my grandma gold's alligator pumps.  about a month ago lucy came out of my mom's dress up closet with these lovelies on. my mother gave me permission to inherit them as long as i take good care- i immediately took them to the local shoe repair shop and had them conditioned and re-heeled.

i haven't had the courage to wear them out yet. they are too beautiful and too precious. maybe family photos? i don't know, but my grandmother's taste was impeccable. look at these beauties (and don't mind the sock and leggings lines-just done with an early workout)
*i get the feeling i'm going to have to hide these babies when the sisters come over to visit.


where my feet stood

one hot and muggy sunday afternoon i was walking through byu campus with my mother and aunt brenda. i don't remember the year, or why we were there in the first place, but i do remember when we walked about 15 paces outside of the student center when my aunt froze mid step. being a teenager i was quite confused and worried at the same time that people would notice. she was staring down at the ground and then looked me right in the eyes and said, "this is the exact spot i was standing when i heard president kennedy had been shot".  i couldn't believe the intense spark that that sent throughout my body. decades had passed, but standing there, in that spot, it was like it had just happened to her a second before.

on September 11th, 2001 i was a sophomore with 20 credits on my plate. my first class began at 8am and ballet company rehearsals ended at 7:30.  as i shuffled down the stairwell after my 8am humanities lit class i sensed something weird, as though i was out of the loop.  with the time change and a professor who had an hour bus ride with his ipod-no one in our class really knew anything. remember, this is before twitter, and tweeting and facebook and texting and, well, everything.

when one of my feet reached the first floor, and the other still on the last step, my friend shauna rounded the corner just that moment and looked me in the eyes. i felt it, i didn't know what it was, but it was something. "did you hear?" she blurted out. "hear what?" i asked.  the rest was a blur. i don't remember her exact words, or phrase or what she said first, "terrorist, hijacked, twin towers, pentagon, another plane, one tower fell." i have no idea to this day. i do remember the feeling of all the blood rushing away from my brain and putting my hand over my mouth. i wonder where that innate response comes from, covering our mouths? maybe it's because i had no words, thoughts were just whizzing around like the inside of a blender. i don't know if i responded or not, she had to get to class, i had to get to class. it felt like the only thing i could cling on to was the predictable. the known. the safe. my backpack, class, homework, books, rehearsals.

we debated whether or not to even have rehearsals. being in the arts, many faculty and students had friends, relatives & colleagues in manhatten. their was no communication going in or out, and we were completely in the dark. our artistic director decided, it is for the best to just dance. at first i was angry, i hadn't seen a tv yet and literally had been inside classes or dancing all day. but the music started, we wiped our eyes and noses and danced. and danced. and danced. i almost get the same feeling when running with my ipod, as i do when dancing to excellent music. i get lost and forget everything else. it was an amazing respite from the day. we hugged each other in the end and trekked back to our apartments.  i finally sat down and watched the aftermath on tv.

i think that day was the most silent i have ever been in my entire life. in one minute i would feel shock, horror, fear, disbelief, mourning, faith, love, everything. but i felt that again flying into la guardia a few years ago, when the absence of those two giant obelisks was so unbelievably clear.  throughout the years it all seems to fade away. did it really happen? how do we all forget so easily?  but time presses on, no matter who you are and where you live. it can't stop moving, and so we fill our lives with other memories, and other concerns and slowly take for granted the peace that we enjoy each and every day. but i know, on every 11th day of september, i will stop and remember where my feet stood. and thank God for all that i have today, and bless the families who lost someone on that day.

do you remember where your feet stood?


on this weekend

we are mainly over our sickies over here (and now suspicious as to how much of it is allergies) and looking forward to the weekend. how about you? don't you love weekends? i especially do now that we have a child in school.

and the birds are chirping. yes, birds chirping out my window!  i wondered why i was so amazed at this fact but i truly have forgotten the sound. this delicious drop in temperatures is bringing forth the beautiful side of our valley. see, when it is hotter then hades they don't sing. or chirp or even fly around. no, it is survival mode for my feathered friends and me here from may to september. but hark! they sing now! and i'm out walking after 6am! happy day!

we currently have 6 apricot plants on our window sill (thanks becky!) and need to find the money and time to till, fertilize, ammend and drip system our land where we want to put them. any and all tips/suggestions/volunteers are welcome.

i can cross off my list of fighting with the school district over lucy's bus stop. i must have learned from my sister danna of how to fight for my rights. i'll take them to the mattresses everytime when i don't get the proper care for my children, even though we live in the boonies. what is the name for that kind of bias? smalltownism?  i'm sick and tired of the notion that because people live in the sticks that their brains are made out of sticks.

tomorrow is ALL DAY zumba certification! nervous! excited! taking ibuprofen with me in my bag!

lucy started ballet class yesterday and was ready to go again today after school. she was completely affronted when i explained to her that although school is everyday, ballet is only once a week. she skulked away and i knew exactly how she felt. the barre is one of the places where i feel completely at home and happy. poor girl.

tomorrow i have to call our satellite provider to cancel the extra super special bonus package they gave us for moving in for FREE. except for the fine print *this package cannot be canceled any day EARLIER than 90 days from date of purchase. if you do not cancel it on exactly the 90th day you will be charged monthly  an extra $39.99.  the fine print is my mortal enemy. 

aren't these basket hangings perfect? i love it when people have things in their homes with so much beauty, significance and use. a threefer!

thinking about staying here for our sisters weekend in october. isn't it gorgeous?


if you read anything today, read this

my cousin mark's awesome wife angela (really, she really is awesome, and so i mark, really) is an excellent writer, and therefore keeps an excellent blog.  she recently wrote about the muslim mosque near ground zero for the world trade centers.

i'm sheepishly admitting that i first balked at the idea too. but after reading this post  
i realized that i was wrong-very, very, wrong.

all religions have the freedom of worship in this country. no matter what faith they are or where they build their places of worship. she explains it much more eloquently than i can, so i will just say this: read the post, and think about it a little more. that's all.

she even started a facebook page that you can join here.


teething and peaches

look what she found all by herselfs
phoebe elise: 11 months.
september 1, 2010


try not to hate me

maybe it's because i've almost been sick for a week. or that phoebe is a human wrecking ball these days, or that i just purely look pathetic. but my husband built me a custom built in pantry for my laundry room this labor day weekend.

yeah, i know. he pretty much has a 'get-out-of-jail-free card' for the next year.


meet the neighbors

if you were ever wondering what the southern nevada desert looks like that we now call home, 
well, wonder no more.
VULTURES aka the spawn of hell ( i hate these things)
{photos courtesy of ty} his form of exercise are weekly hikes into the mountains. he now wants a camera like mine, since he has been stealing mine to take these snaps. scratch that, we wants a NEW camera, NICER than mine to take his pictures. pshaw!


i'm still the best candidate for worst mother of the year

phoebes has been fussy this week. and that's fussy with a capital F. at first i thought it was mainly because i picked up 40lbs of tomatoes and peaches to peel, chop and can. you know, cause that's pretty much how life rolls around here. and then her nose started running, and a little pearly white on top started to peek out. so, TEETHING! i love the problem umbrella that teething is. i can pretty much blame everything on it. what, you're shocked that there is cat poop all over my porch? um, my baby is TEETHING! so there. but then, oh, it gets better. i wake up this morning with a runny nose and the world's most horrific sore throat. sand paper meets indian burn in my throat. yowzas.

and all week i had been telling phoebe to suck it up. your just teething! it's nothing! shake it off! i let her whine during all her naptimes and thought, "jeez, she really hasn't napped for, like, 3 days".  and when my cold hit i realized that i am, without a doubt, a horrible mother. sometimes my cry meter is spot on, i can hear my babies screams (it only works with my own) and go, "oh yeah, that's her hungry/tired/poopy/soggy/teething/spoiled rotten cry". and address the problem and be done with it. but somehow my radar got scrambled, and i confused the "i'm sicker than a dog" cry with "i'm just whining" cry. 

it's like i'm losing my mojo.

but then, ty and i saw this picture of phoebe in the bath, and i said:

"If she'd 'ave kept on goin' down that way she'd 'ave gone straight on to that castle."

ok in hindsight, this wasn't as funny on the post as it was in person. because ty and i were laughing our heads off when we saw the picture. 

and if you haven't ever seen labrynth before, do it just for me. because david bowie in spandex is not something to be missed in this world. oh no it is not.



i get to spend my entire mornings with just these two love nuggets.
*ps* it's september!!!!!!!

first day of school: a letter

dear lucy,

today was your first day of kindergarten. i wasn't as sad as i thought i would be, watching you walk onto that big school bus. mostly because you've loved those cheesewagons since the day you could talk. but mostly because there was so much confusion and running trying to catch the bus in the first place.  it was so neat seeing you at the school, all eager, all ready all excited.

i hope you remember how sad your sister was that you went to school that day. and the days after. i'm proud that you two are such good friends. i'm also intrigued at how lost she is without you, yet starts fighting with you as soon as you are home. i hope you know that i was lonely that day too. i never realized how much of a talker you were before (in a good way, well, sometimes).  the house was eerily quiet, and i paced around cleaning & thinking about what you were doing at that moment. it almost felt like the stories of amputees. you'll learn about those someday, but basically even when someone has lost a limb, they still feel the itch on it, and want to scratch. even though you weren't home, i still was wanting to talk to you. will it feel like this when you are in high school? out on dates? in college? married? living thousands of miles away?

even if it is, i think i'll be ok with it with a few conditions.  as long as you still smile when we see each other, like you did today when you came home. as long as you sit down at the table and tell me all about your day and friends and teacher and m&m's that you got. as long as you feel safe telling me anything and everything. as long as you are still excited to learn and grow and be a kind person. then, and only then, will it keep being ok for you to grow up and leave. 

you will always remember that first day of school and all the new things you experienced. the wrinkles in your new clothes. the squeak of your new shoes. how the bathroom smells like clorox and swiss cheese.  but i hope you will read this and know that i missed you. that i love you. that i'm extemely proud of you. and that i'm always thinking about you, especially when you are gone.

love, mom.

ps: you should know that your dad called 4 times that day to check in on your status. and that's saying a lot; your father hates phones. maybe you can teach him how to text in about 13 years? but don't expect a cell phone any sooner. you got it?
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