Saturday, December 31, 2011

My New Year's Resolutions

Every year I make them, and every year I break them. Sad. I know. But, maybe this year will be different. I am making huge changes in my life this year, so maybe I can actually keep my resolutions, which would also be a change. So, here they are. Honestly, they are usually the same every year, and it is frustrating that I can't keep them. We'll see.

1. FHE every week
2. Scriptures with family every night
3. Temple once a month
4. Never get behind by more than two weeks on tithing
5. Regular exercise every week
6. Healthy eating with treats only once in a while
7. Less phone, more sleep
8. Good grades (shouldn't be TOO hard to keep this one!)
9. Don't yell at my kids as much, if at all
10. More compliments to and dates with Mikey; think about his needs more before my own

I know this seems like a lot, but I am pretty good at keeping all of these, just not on a regular basis. So, my main goal is to just do better on them. I don't need to be perfect, but next year on New Year's Eve, I'd like to look back and feel like I did a lot better this year. That's my number one resolution--just do my best.

Friday, December 30, 2011

My Daughter's Awesome Self Esteem

When I was eleven years old, I was so self-conscious, it was painful! I was constantly worried about what other people thought of me and whether or not I was pretty or thin or good enough. It was an awful way for a beautiful, talented little girl to live. I have tried really hard to tell my daughters that they are wonderful and beautiful and smart and talented and important. I'd like to think that they are getting the picture and I really think that Audrey is, and that makes me happy. Recently, she decided that she wanted to express herself through her hair. I pondered this request for a while and I decided that I would let her. I don't want to be one of those moms who never let their kids do anything and then eventually the kids do a major backfire and do everything against their parents will. So, I gave in to this little thing. Hair grows back, or at least that's what I keep telling myself. I don't particularly like the new hairdo, but Audrey does, and it makes her feel powerful. So, that's what I DO like about it. I truly hope with all my heart that as Audrey gets older and enters middle school that this self-esteem of hers will continue to be so strong.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

My Frustrations (Are a Result of My Expectations)

Yes, Dad. My frustrations are a result of my expectations. I know. But, I can't help it. When it comes to school, my expectations of myself are very high. They always have been. So, it only seems natural that when I score badly on a test, I berate myself to no end and then vow to do better next time. Well, that's what I have been doing, but it's not working. I have been getting bad score after bad score and it's really starting to get to me. Okay, it actually got to me a long time ago. Why is this happening? I don't understand! I got 100% on an accounting quiz a few weeks ago and on my last one I got exactly 80%. Some people might not be appalled at this, but I am. That's 20% less than what I should be getting, especially in accounting. Or, how about the 76% I got on one of my Geography midterms? Then there was the 64% I got on my last Biology midterm. I took another one last night and I haven't found out the results yet. If it's as abysmal as the last few, I am in big trouble. I have already resigned myself to the fact that I am not getting a 4.0 this semester. Okay. But, could I at least get some Bs out of the classes rather than Cs or, heaven forbid, a D? Ugh. I need a break. Stress sucks.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

My Latest Update

Hello All,
As most of you know, we went to Texas this last weekend to attend the temple to watch Mike's brother Chris and his family be sealed for time and all eternity. What a huge blessing that was for us! I had the honor and privilege of being Penny's escort as she made her way through the temple for the first time. It's nice to do that because it gives me a fresh perspective on the blessings I get from attending the temple. I hope that Mike and I can have a new desire to start going more often.

On a more bittersweet (but exciting) note, Mike also had the interview with Holt Cat in Irving. It's looking more and more like Heavenly Father wants us in Texas. I will miss Utah and the people I have met and love so much here, but I am looking forward to opening a new and exciting chapter in my life. The interview went better than Mike or I could have ever hoped for. Not only did they tell Mike they want him so badly that they will create a position for him, they also said that they will continue to pay him what he makes here with room to grow and all the overtime he wants. We are so excited to get going. In some ways, I want to leave right now! But, we are still waiting on our home situation to be figured out. If we can get that taken care of, then there is nothing stopping us except the sheer amount of packing. The garage alone could take upwards of a month!

I had the chance to look at some houses while we were there and I toured the elementary school the kids will go to. It is wonderful! I am so much more excited for them to go there than I am for them to be at Fox Hills. We attended our potential ward and everyone was very friendly and inviting. That's one of the things I love about our church. It doesn't vary no matter where you are in the world. I really need a fresh start like this. I also saw my campus that I will be attending and I found out that in Arlington, they have all-day kindergarten!! I can't wait! Not that I don't love Claire, but it just means that I can be that much closer to attending school full-time or even working during the day doing accounting. So, the countdown has begun. We will see what Heavenly Father has in store for us. I can't wait!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

My Toasty Home

Right now I am sitting on my trusty leather couch, listening to a fire crackle in the fireplace. My kids have just gotten done playing in the snow and the girls are now lying on the floor with their feet held up in front of the fire. I just got done cleaning the kitchen and the dishwasher is running in the background. Dallin is sitting at the table doing homework and the window is bright from the sun reflecting on the snow outside. Mike is out with some buddies working in the garage and the dumb dog is laying at my feet, asleep. We had some Christmas music playing before Audrey started practicing her cello. Now it's back on and we are enjoying our morning. I hope everyone else is having a nice one too! Love to all!

Friday, November 4, 2011

My Quandary

As you all know, I have gone through about a zillion dogs since we have lived here in SLC. I have never been able to find the perfect one. Cannon was a puppy, so he chewed on everything and was just too much work. Plus, I was pregnant with Claire at the time, so I just didn't have the patience! Then, there was Turbo. Turbo. What can you say about that dog? He was cute, but he consistently took food from the kids hands, knocked over the garbage can, constantly pooped in the house...I was done. Then, there was Rowdy. Rowdy was the best dog ever. I couldn't ask for a better dog. But, Mike didn't like him. Apparently, his blonde dog hair was too much for Mike to deal with. Man, I wish I would have just told Mike to shove it on that one, but I didn't. So, we gave him to a friend in the ward. Now we are onto Bronx. Bronx seemed like the perfect dog. But, from the beginning he peed every once in a while in the house. I thought it was because he wasn't neutered, so I got him neutered. Yeah, that didn't help. Then, I thought maybe a dog door would help. At first, it seemed to, but for some reason he is scared of Mike (which might be part of the problem) or he doesn't like the cold weather (which I doubt is the problem). But, today alone I have found poop and pee in my birthday room, pee in Dallin's room, and poop in Emma's room. I have tried and tried to get the kids to close their bedroom doors, but alas, no luck. So, I have reached the end of my rope. For some reason, I am having trouble allowing this dog to leave even though I don't exactly like him. Maybe it's something about his buggy eyes, or the way he snores when he sleeps. But, I have posted him on KSL and I am hoping that he will go to a family who will love him. I can't count how many times I have had to clean up dog pee while we have lived in this house. But, I have decided that this is it. We are not getting another dog again. Maybe a goldfish would be better suited for our family. In the meantime, I have some rooms to clean. Does anyone have a pooper scooper I can borrow?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My Potential Chronic Sunburn

Well, since everyone who follows my blog already knows, it's not a secret anymore. Mike and I and the kids are planning a (tentative) move to Texas. It's time, after 13 years, for Mike to finally be closer to his side of the family. This is a bittersweet thing for me, for sure!! I don't want to leave my own family by any means. That is a HUGE given. However, Mike deserves to enjoy the same camaraderie that I have had for so long and it will give our kids the chance to get to know the Jenkins side as well. Plus, real estate in Texas is incredibly cheap which is always a great thing! Mike has an interview with the CAT dealership in Irving, which is about 20 minutes from Arlington, (our city of choice) on or around the 10th of November when we are there for Chris and Penny's big day(s). I am really excited, but also a little scared at the idea of leaving. We have been here for 7 years now and even though I don't really like Utah weather, it is much preferable to Texas heat. But, who knows? Maybe I will actually like it once we are there. If everything goes the way it should, I will be attending the University of Texas at Arlington to finish my Bachelor's and Master's degrees in accounting. Penny has already informed me of which schools are the best for the kids and I trust her judgment implicitly. it's just a waiting game to see if this is what Heavenly Father really wants for us. If things go smoothly, then we'll know it's meant to be. If they don't, then it's not. Either way, it's all in Heavenly Father's hands as far as I'm concerned.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

My Medical Nightmares

Hello all,
It seems like I have been writing a lot lately, but it seems like life is handing me a lot to write about. But, today I will write about the medical nightmares I have been having these past few weeks. First, the most obvious one: my cyst removal. As most of you know, I had an emergency removal of a cyst on my ovary in which they removed the whole ovary as well as the cyst. I woke up on Monday morning with a pain in my side that just wouldn't go away, and it kept getting bigger and bigger. Finally, Mike FORCED me to go to the hospital, against my will, and after a CT scan, we found the cyst. It was a dermoid cyst, meaning that it had grown teeth and everything. Scary stuff! I am actually learning about this stuff in my Human Biology class, so it was like a little extra homework for me. Anyway, we decided to take it out, not at all thinking of what the medical bill might be afterward.

Well, yesterday I received the bill from the hospital in the mail. I was thinking it would be pretty big--somewhere in the neighborhood of $5, maybe even $10,000 if things got out of hand! I was so wrong. Folks, it is a whopping $25,438.11!! I about fell down and had a heart attack right then and there. What can I do about it now?! It's not like I can take my ovary back. So, here I am, bill in hand, wishing I had a million dollars right about now. Not to worry, I can always sell my other ovary for the money, right? I mean, it's not like I need it!

As for my other medical nightmare....well, this one isn't nearly as expensive. But, it will definitely mean huge changes in our home and a lot of patience on mine and Mike's parts. Dallin has been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder with some Hyperactivity. I have NEVER noticed any hyperactivity on his part, but apparently some things he does like scream at the top of his lungs or get up and down from his seat fall into the hyperactive category. However, I have known for quite some time in my heart that he had ADD. I think now it's just nice to have an official diagnosis so we can start getting help on how to deal with it WITHOUT medication. That is one of the things Mike and I are very adamant about: NO MEDICATION. Luckily, Dallin's case is somewhat mild and he is by no means an unruly child. But, still, he does have the odd noises and the small tics that are associated with kids who have attention problems. He also has a tremendously hard time concentrating, and I know that this is something that will get better as he gets older. But, we are working on helping with that now so it won't be so difficult for him in the future.

We have decided as part of the treatment, that we are going to start going gluten-free for at least a month to see if it helps. Of course, we are doing other things like adjusting bedtimes and night routines, TV schedules, posting checklists for him, etc. But, the biggest change for our family is going to be the gluten-free diet. I would like to get to the point where everything in the house is Dallin-friendly. But, that means the whole family is pretty much going gluten-free too. I don't know if that would be more expensive than just buying him extra stuff on top of our regular groceries, but I will just have to perform some trial and error. It will be a journey, that's for sure.

Anyway, that's about it on my end. How is everyone else doing?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My Educational Predicament

For the past few weeks, as most of you know, I have been dealing with my kids' elementary school and problems encountered therein. Most of the problems have been with Dallin and his teacher. It has gotten me thinking about what I want to do with my life. When I graduated from high school, I knew for sure that I wanted to be a teacher. I went to SUU and I was in the process of taking all the classes needed to get my elementary education degree. When I moved back to Oregon, I decided that I would rather be an accountant, and for the most part, that is what I have stuck with. But, with all the troubles Dallin has been dealing with lately, it has gotten me to thinking that maybe I want to switch back to my original idea. I realize that the money aspect of it would be about half of what I'd make as an accountant. But, I wish that Dallin had the kind of teacher that I know I could be. I hope that doesn't sound like I am tooting my own horn, but I love working with kids, mostly teenagers and preteens. But, I'd be happy with just about anything from grade three and up.

So, here is my predicament: I have already been going back to school now for well over a year. I have done a few general ed courses, but most of them have been business related with the goal of transferring to a four-year college to study accounting. But, I have been volunteering a lot lately in three of my kids classes and I just don't know for sure that accounting is what I want to do anymore. Too bad I can't do both! Any suggestions?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

My Dermoid Cyst

Well, as a lot of you already know, I went in for emergency surgery Monday night to have a cyst removed on my ovary. I have to admit, I wasn't expecting that initially. I even said to the receptionist in the ER that I thought I might be overreacting by coming in and that it was probably just gas. But, lo and behold, after getting a CT scan, they found a 7cm dermoid cyst on my left ovary. It had gotten so big, it had twisted my ovary downward which is what caused the unbelieveable pain in my left side. It even had a tooth in it! My sister had a cyst removed when she was 20 weeks along with her first son, Chase. Now, she has another one. I'm not sure why she is waiting to have it removed, but I am sure she has a good reason. All I know is that the pain was unbearable for me and I wanted it gone!! I was blessed to have lots of people helping me through all this. Caradon gave me advice and calmed me down, reassuring me that I wasn't going to die. That was my main concern, believe it or not! =) Sam came and took the kids for a couple hours until my mom could get there. Then, she spent the night and cleaned my house so I could basically lie in bed all day. I have to admit, I am getting kind of tired of sleeping on my back and I wish so badly that I could sleep on my side. I'll get there sooner or later. I also live in a family full of comedians, so I am constantly laughing, which sucks because it hurts so bad. I also really need to take a shower, but I am scared to. I am afraid of falling and/or getting the stitches wet. Every time I stand up, I feel dizzy. And, then there's Mikey who has made this while thing seem like a vacation of sorts. He is so attentive and loving and I am so grateful that he has bent over backwards to make sure I am comfortable and well-taken-care-of. I am a lucky girl. Heavenly Father has really been watching over me and I am grateful for all the well wishes from friends and loved ones and the prayers. They really do help. Now, I have to get back into a normal routine! Wish me luck!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My Friend's Husband

I babysat Amy when she was very little. She was always very hyper and excited. We went to church together and when she was a Beehive, I was a Laurel. We were always really close. Then, she got older and started dating Justin. He was a great guy, but they weren't married yet, and they had a little boy together, Layne. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise for them because after being together for so long, they finally got married and became a little family. I babysat Layne for about a year as well and he was so much fun! Justin ended up getting baptized and as far as I know, they were making plans to go to the temple.

This morning, I got a call from my sister saying that Amy's husband died a few days ago. I can't believe it. To be honest, I guess you just think people are invincible and something like this comes along and hits you like a ton of bricks. They were such a cute family and I can only imagine how hard they are taking this, especially Layne. To lose your daddy at such a young age (only 9) is such a difficult thing. My thoughts and prayers are with them for sure. But, this also got me thinking about my own husband.

How quickly life can be taken! You never know when your last moment might be with the ones you love. Maybe instead of whining tonight when Mike asks for a little him-time, I should gladly be with him because I don't know if this might be the last chance I have. Who wants to know that the last moment you had with your spouse was a fight over something so precious as love? I sure do love Mike with all my heart. I love my kids with all my heart as well, and all my family and friends. Take the time to call someone you've been meaning to call for a while now, or take that extra moment to show your kids you really care about them, or take that extra few seconds to give someone a hug as they leave the house. You never know if it might be your last chance.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Body

I was inspired for this post by my sister's post from yesterday, although hers was much shorter than mine will be. But, that's the way I roll...and roll...and roll...I tend to ramble. Anyway, I was thinking about bodies in general, and about mine more specifically. I have never really been a fan of my body since I was about 8 or so. Before that, I thought nothing of it except that it allowed me to do what I wanted like play in trees, dance, sing, make up stories, and just about any other thing a body can do. When I was eight, I remember going to the doctor's office and being scolded for my weight and the potential of being an "obese adult" if I kept eating the way I was eating. That moment in time really stuck with me and I have never been able to shake this obsession I have had since then.

As I got older, I slimmed down as most growing kids do. By the time I reached the end of high school, I was 5'8" and about 165 pounds. Honestly, I would kill to be that now, but at the time, I still thought I was too fat. Then, I went to college and due to living in a small town (Cedar City, Utah), I walked everywhere and since I lived in the dorms, I never really snacked on anything and just ate at the cafeteria when I was hungry. So, I managed to lose about 10 pounds which brought me to the lowest I've ever been as an adult and I felt GREAT! I felt so powerful and beautiful, the kind of feeling that I should have been having all along! Then, I got married and I relaxed quite a bit. I didn't have to impress anyone anymore and Mikey likes me just the way I am, big or small. For that, I am truly grateful, but in some small ways it's a curse because I don't feel like I need to try to improve myself.

This is where miracles started to happen. My body not only gained and lost and changed in so many ways, but I was also able to grow four little other people inside of my body. What a miracle!! Think about it for a minute. I stare at myself sometimes in the mirror, and most of the time, I have a look of horror on my face. But, if I would just think about what came out of that huge, saggy, deflated balloon belly, I might look at it differently. I'm not the heaviest I have ever been now, nor am I the lightest. But, I think I am the healthiest. I have learned over the years that it is so important to treat my body how it should be treated! I need the right fuel and the right exercise to keep myself going. I don't know if I felt so good in college because I was skinny or because of the work I did to get myself that way. Either way, I felt good, and I know that if I do the right work, which will make me feel strong and good, the losing weight thing will follow naturally.

Anyway, I just wanted to share those thoughts with those of you who might be feeling the same way. Have a great day, everyone! And, remember that we are all different, thank goodness! If we were all the same, life would be so boring!!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My Longest Run Ever

That's right, folks! I ran my longest run ever last night, or at least it felt like it! It even felt longer than my half marathon which is 13.1 grueling miles! Now, I only ran 3.32 miles last night. I say "ran" for lack of a better word, or maybe because it is easier than saying I mixed running and walking. Regardless, I "ran" those miles, but in addition to the running, I was pushing my bike trailer/double jogging stroller which had both my youngest girls inside. Keep in mind that between them both you are looking at about 85 pounds. Then add in the weight of the stroller itself which is a good 10 or so and you are looking at nearly 100 pounds! Plus, I ran/walked/pushed it up to Sonic. Now I say "up" because I truly mean "up." It is a very slow incline at first, but then it steepens quite a bit and Sonic is at the end of 1.66 miles uphill most of the way. I got the kids each a little treat and I asked for the biggest water they had because brilliant me forgot to bring a water bottle.

The kid came out on his roller blades and boy, did he deliver the biggest water ever! It was their most giant cup (which is I think 32 ounces) filled with fresh, icy cold water. Ah, it never tasted so good. It was funny to see the kid's reaction when he saw us because I turned to him, with a beet red, dripping wet face and smiled. This is quite a look I get when I really push myself physically. I have very blonde eyebrows, almost clear and my face turns as red as a tomato, I am not even joking. I'm used to it now, but if someone sees me who doesn't know how I get, it's quite a shock. This kid fit the shocked expression bill to a tee. I thanked him for the stuff and started guzzling the water. Then, I made Emma hold it in between her little knees. I swear, the cup went from the floor of the stroller past the tops of her knees in a sitting position! It was huge!

Then, I started the treacherous journey back down the hill. I had thought that maybe the way back would be easier because the decline would pull the stroller which would in turn pull me. But, that wasn't the case. My lungs couldn't take it and honestly, I think they might have burst if I would have continued running. So, I did the old power walk back down the hill to my house. I don't think I looked quite as funny as those little old ladies you see power walking together, hips a-swaying and arms seesawing frantically. But, I am sure I looked pretty darn close. I am very proud of myself for even making it as far as I did. It took almost an hour, not including the stop at Sonic. And, even though that is the slowest time for me on a run (which I can't really include because I haven't pushed a stroller on a run in at least 8 years), I did it. I guess that's all you can really hope for is that you will finish what you start. That is what I am going to do from now on. I really don't have any excuses anymore, especially now that I have pushed 100 pounds uphill for what seemed like forever! (Now imagine "The Climb" by Miley Cyrus playing in the background and you'll get inspired too!) Have a great day everyone!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

My Cub Scout

Well, I just spent a good ten minutes writing this cute little entry about Dallin (again, I know). Then I tried to post it and it was erased!! Crap! So, now I have to write again. So, here goes. Please understand that I do think of my children equally and love them equally, but lately Dallin has been doing a lot of things that are too funny not to share. Last night he and I went on a bike ride date. I took him to the Jordan River Parkway, which is this beautiful stretch of bike and running paths next to the Jordan River. Anyway, I was all excited to take him because I thought he genuinely loved to ride his bike. Well, I was wrong! We only rode maybe four miles total which on a bike shouldn't take very long. But, because he was complaining most of the time, it took us just under 45 minutes. I couldn't believe it! When I was his age, I LIVED outside during the summer. Now, my kids would rather spend most of their time inside. I try to limit their TV time, but I am wondering if I should just take it away altogether so they are forced to be creative and to be outside. "My knees ache, there are bugs on me, my butt hurts, this is taking forever..." The list goes on and on as to the complaints that came out of that boy's mouth! I swear, that was not the way I planned our little date, so honestly, I am not entirely sure I will ever want to try it again with him.

On a more positive note, he is attending his first-ever Cub Scout Day Camp today. He is so excited. We had to be at the church at 7 this morning and he was up in my room fully dressed at 6:15. When we were waiting at the church for everyone to arrive, he was acting a little goofy with the other boys, then he came over to me and whispered, "Mom, I am SO nervous." It made me a little teary-eyed, but luckily, I kept it together. I gave him a kiss and a hug and I told him that he was going to have so much fun! On the inside I was screaming that we needed to hop back into the van and race home and I was never going to let him leave me. But, I know that he won't grow if Mom always coddles him. Luckily, my dear friend, Carina, is going to be there all day, so she told me she would keep an extra eye on him. That made me feel much better! Tomorrow when he goes, Mike will be with him all day, so I will definitely rest easiest tomorrow. Let's just hope he doesn't get asked to do any physical exercise at camp, otherwise those leaders are going to get a taste of what I did last night! I don't know, though. Aren't kids always much better for other adults? Yeah...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

My Blast From the Past

We recently got Netflix. I swear by this program and I wish we would have gotten it sooner. We hooked it up through our Wii so the kids can watch any TV show that they want (just about) any time they want (when Mom says it's okay). I rarely join them, and my experience with Netflix is the DVDs through the mail. I love it! I can keep the movie for any amount of time I want, then when I am done, I just send it back in the mail and they send me the next one on my list. But, two days ago I decided to join the kids and watch streaming Netflix.
Since I was watching, which I don't usually do, I demanded that I be the one to choose what we watched. I was browsing through the selections they had and the movie "Fame" that was recently made was one of the movies shown. It made me remember the TV show "Fame" that was on in the 80s, so I checked for it. I didn't know it, but that show only lasted two seasons! At least, that's what Netflix said. Anyway, I vaguely remember an episode of it that I especially loved. Keep in mind that this show was on in 1985, at which time I was six years old. So, my memory of it was from a six-year-old's perspective, which meant it was the coolest show ever! I flipped through all the episodes and finally came to it: The Wizard of Oz episode!! I don't know if any of you who read my blog have ever seen this episode (besides you, Caradon. Of course.) but it was basically the story of Wizard of Oz set in the school of the arts that the students attended. It was very cheesy with the halls of the school lined with sheets of shiny streamers and large paper flowers pasted over them. Miss Sherwood was the wicked witch, Mr. Sorofsky was the wizard, Leroy the scarecrow, Bruno the tin man, Doris as get the picture. Anyway, I watched it with a smile on my face and eyes wide at the memories that flooded back to me. It was still as cheesy as ever in all of its 1985 splendor, and it was amazing how quickly the whole premise of the show came back to my mind. It's amazing what you pick up when you are six years old!
Once it was all over, I sighed happily and turned to my kids who had been watching it with me. They were all grins too, and I smiled at the thought that I may have created a childhood memory similar to my own to pass on to my children. Needless to say, I will be watching streaming Netflix a little more now! After all, I have two seasons of Fame to watch!

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Son

Well, it's been two months since I've written and I feel like a turd. Sorry. Now's as good a time as any to start back up, though, right? Well, my son is today's topic. He has been eight for two months now and we finally got him baptized on July 9th. We waited that long so that Adam, Katie and Jonathan could be here too. It was a wonderful thing. I can't believe how old my little boy is getting! I remember when he was first born! He has turned out to be a really great kid so far. Not only is he sweet and loving, but he is also a very hard little worker and most of the time he is quick to do what I ask him to do. He adores his dad and spends every waking moment with him. He's also a funny little kid too. The past few days he has desperately wanted to set "the world record for staying in only your underwear all day, Mom!" But, I have been pretty mean and made him leave the house with me to run errands, so he hasn't been able to set his record. I guess I will have to set aside an entire day devoted to just staying inside the house so he can finally set his world record! I doubt that he will make it into the Guiness Book, but he can try! I love all my kids so much, but there's definitely a special place inside my heart for my one and only son. I pray every day that he will grow up happy and kind and grow to be a great man like his dad. I am such a lucky mom to have the four best kids in the world!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

My Mom


I feel like I need to post this blog so I can express to you how much I love you. (By the way, for those of you who don't know, this is a picture of my mom playing a nun in a community production of "The Sound of Music." She and I were backstage.) As you know, I have always been better at expressing my feelings with words on paper rather than out loud, and I want everyone to be able to hear what I have to say. I remember countless Mother's Day duets with you. Usually, we would sing My Mother, My Daughter. "The seasons come, the seasons go, and I see you grow. The light of faith is in your eyes. It was planted long ago. I weep for your sorrows, smile when life is fair, I speak your name in each tender prayer...." I loved that tradition that we had. So, today at church, I sang in Relief Society with my two beautiful children, Dallin and Audrey. It brought back a flood of memories,(and tears) especially when I explained a little about my history with singing on Mother's Day to the ladies in the room.

When I was young, I never fully appreciated you, and I am sorry for that. I remember that day at Scott's cabin. Nothing needs to be said about it because we both know what I am talking about. But, that memory is cemented in my head to this day, so vividly, and I think that it's there for a very good reason. Probably many reasons. But, the main thing I want to say in reference to that day is how very much I love you. You were so quick to always forgive me, even if I had hurt you to your very core. I know that one of these days, probably sooner than I would like, my own daughters may feel those things about me. But, they will also realize when they are moms, how right I actually was, just like I have realized that about you.

But, today is a day for me to remind you how great you truly are. So many times, you stayed awake with us all night long when we were sick. I don't think there was a single concert that I ever had that you weren't either in attendance for or playing the piano for. You managed to always sign us kids up for various classes and other extracurricular activities on a limited budget. You and I shared an amazing once-in-a-lifetime experience in Europe that I will never forget either. I think you may have actually been cooler than I realized at the time! You always encouraged us in our constantly changing life ambitions. You were always there to pick me up after I fell, and I fell many times. You never told me I couldn't do something! In your mind, there was nothing we couldn't do as long as we put our minds to it. Now that I am a mom, I realize how lucky I am to have had you there to raise me, to teach me what it means to truly be a strong woman. You dealt with so much, and yet you are still so strong! So, on this day, I want you to know how very much I love you. I want you to know what a tremendous impact you have for good on so many people's lives every day. If I can even be a shred of the kind of mother you are, I will be so grateful! Never again will I say that I don't want to be like you, because quite frankly, there's no one else I would RATHER be like! I hope you know how very much I truly value your friendship, your opinion, and your love. I will always try to twirl for you, and I can't wait to watch my own daughters twirl their way through life for me. Thank you for everything you do for me every day. Happy Mother's Day, Mommy!

"I've watched you, dear mother, each day of my life. I've seen how you smile through the joy and the strife. I've needed your love, and have known you were there. I've seen how you help to bring answers to prayers...depending on my love, my dear mother..."

Always your Pixie...


Friday, May 6, 2011

My Much-Needed Break

Well, Hello All! Here is a long overdue fill-in on what is going on with the fam. I have finally finished the semester (Spring) and due to no financial aid available to me, I am taking a forced vacation from school for the summer. I think it will be good. The kids were starting to complain that I was ALWAYS doing homework (which isn't too far from the truth) and I wasn't spending enough time with them. So, now they will have me all summer long and quite frankly, they will most likely get pretty sick of me. So, here I am, sitting at my blog, listening to my dishwasher run in the background, knowing that my house is pretty clean (for my standards, not my mom's) and feeling pretty decent. I need to get out for a run. Anyway, that's what's up with me. Now for the rest of the family!

Mike is doing okay. Things at work are very slow, and he is really struggling to find a spot there where he feels comfortable. Ever since the false accusation made at him at work, he has constantly felt anger and a huge desire to leave. I certainly can't blame him. But, considering the economy is what it is right now, he's lucky to have a job, so we aren't going to complain too much. Besides work, he is having a much better time. He has lots of side jobs lined up for extra money, but that hasn't stopped him from making time to take Dallin to the skate park or go to soccer games and practices for Audrey and Dallin. Which brings me to my next group: the kids. Audrey and Dallin are playing Spring Outdoor Soccer. Audrey doesn't like it as much and she is ready to try a new sport, but Dallin likes it quite a bit. They are both getting so big. Dallin just turned eight yesterday! I can't believe I have another child getting baptized! I am thrilled, but I am a little sad too. It's amazing how fast one's kids grow up. I have heard the saying, "The days go so slowly, yet the years fly by so fast." It is all too true. Claire will be turning four in a month, and she and Emma are graduating from preschool at the end of May. Well, technically, Claire will be coming back for another year, but Emma is movin on up to Kindergarten. She is very excited, as am I. She has a major jump on the other kids, as she already knows all her letters and sounds and has even started forming them into words. I am constantly amazed at how smart all of my children are.

On sadder news, Mike and I had to cancel our cruise. We are both pretty devastated. We were really looking forward to getting away, just the two of us. Maybe we can afford later to stay in a bed and breakfast for a night or something instead. We are hoping to put together a fun family vacation for sometime in September, right around the three birthdays. We will tell the girls we are going to have a vacation this year to celebrate all our birthdays rather than parties and presents. Hopefully, that will fly! Anyway, we are still trudging along, trying to get everything squared away. Spring always seems to bring with it rebirth and a newfound feeling of rejuvenation. It always seems to help me feel better about life, even when things aren't going as well as I would like. Hope all is well with everyone else! Love you all!

Friday, April 8, 2011

My Running Partner

Hello all,

I realize it has been too long since I wrote, so I decided to get on the ball. To start, I need to let you all know that I love animals. Anyone who knows me at all, knows that I wanted to be a veterinarian as a young child, I volunteered at the Humane Society for a few years in high school and I have always had some sort of pet in my life. Since Mike and I have been married, we have gone through many different animals in an attempt to find the perfect one for our family. We tried cats, but my mom is allergic, so we had to get rid of them. We tried rabbits (still have one of them) and we tried dogs. Big dogs, little dogs, red dogs, yellow dogs...wait, that's a book. Anyway, we have tried lots of dogs!! Cannon, Turbo, Rowdy, and now Bronx. I think we have finally found a keeper. A little history: Mike LOVES cats. He grew up with cats. I grew up with dogs. I LOVE dogs. Allergies trump dislike, so it was agreed that if we had to choose between the two types of pets, we would choose a dog, much to Mike's dismay. Cannon was a puppy--too much work. Turbo was a huge pig--constantly digging in the garbage and eating food right out of Claire's hands. Rowdy was perfect!! Except that he was too big and he shed too much for Mike's liking. Plus, he was blonde, so the hair showed up everywhere. Mike hated that. So, we had to get rid of Mike, I mean Rowdy. ;) After that last one, we decided to get rabbits, but the kids soon lost interest saying that rabbits are boring. It's true. But, finally, Mike agreed that if we could find a dog that doesn't shed, is small, quiet, and good with kids, we could get it. Well, folks, we found him. Bronx. He is my new running partner (on the short runs of course, because I don't think his tiny legs could carry him much further than about 4 miles). He stays right by my feet, never straying, except if a large bus or truck goes by. If that happens, he curls into a scared little ball. He is very nervous all the time. He piddles if he thinks he's in trouble. I think he may have been abused by his previous owner. But, we are showing him what it's like to live in a home where he is loved and treated well. So, after some adjusting time, we are really warming up to this little guy. Best of all...his breed doesn't shed!!! We are all thrilled with that. His eyes are a bit buggy which get mixed reactions from people trying to decide if he's cute or ugly. You decide!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My Evil Bank

I need a place to vent and this blog seems as good a place as any. CHASE BANK SUCKS. I'll say it again: CHASE BANK SUCKS BIG CHUNKS OF DOG POOP. I have had many problems with this bank, but I have finally reached the end of my rope where the desire to stop getting royally screwed is larger than the wish to avoid the hassle of changing all my direct deposit stuff. Every time I have ever made a deposit since Chase took over Washington Mutual, it appears online in my register as "pending" and the next day disappears completely as if it was never there in the first place. I have gone into the branches on three seperate occasions, receipt in hand, to make them aware of their screw-up, but I shouldn't have to do that every time. I went in yesterday morning and made a deposit of $158, $100 of which was cash. Pure, unadulterated CASH which should have posted to my account IMMEDIATELY and stayed there. During the night, 3 checks posted to my account all of which would have been well-covered by only the cash portion of my deposit, let alone the check portion. But, because of this stupid habit Chase has of posting your deposit then making it disappear the next day and reappear magically the third day, made it so these checks took my balance into the hole by a measly $40. Of course, had the deposit actually posted like it was supposed to there wouldn't have been an overdraft in the first place. And, if they had my checking account hooked to my savings account (which also has enough money to cover this supposed indiscretion) they way they said they did, I wouldn't have been charged 68 FRICKING DOLLARS in overdraft fees. So, now I have to drag my butt into Chase AGAIN, even though I should never have to do this in the first place, show them the receipt that proves I did, in fact, make the deposit and they will need to refund me the overdraft fees. This will make the FOURTH time I have had to do this. I shouldn't ever have to do this!! I am DONE with Chase Bank!! I don't care what hassles I have to go through, I will do whatever it takes cause I am DONE!! I hate Chase Bank!! There, I guess I feel a little better, but I won't feel completely better until I give them the finger (which I won't really do because I am classier than that, but I feel like it, that's for sure) and switch to another bank. Now, the question is, which bank should I switch to? Any ideas? Anyway, I hope all of you are having a better day than I am. Thanks for listening to my rant!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My First Baby

When I was 7 1/2, I had a baby. I know what you are thinking--it must have been a doll or something. But, no, it was a real, live, breathing baby. No, it wasn't mine (it was my mom's) but it sure felt like mine. This baby had a very bald head until she was about 2 (just like me). She had blue eyes and she was 9 lbs 2 oz (just like me). Her hair grew in blonde and curly and she had a cute little basketball belly (just like me--except I still have a basketball belly and she, regrefully, does not). She and I would have "conversations" where she would make little baby noises and I would "interpret" them for everyone. In every aspect, she was, in fact, as much my baby in my 7 1/2 year old mind as she was my mother's baby. Caradon and I probably had many fights over who would get to push her in her stroller--Adam didn't really care, he was too busy pushing his head around the carpet like a tractor. I remember that she was the first baby in my entire life that I got to change the diaper. Phew! Crazy baby sure did make a huge mess. But, once I knew how to do it, there was no stopping me from volunteering every time. I'm sure my mom was grateful.

Well, this baby started to grow up. I could regale all the specific stories of the torture my sister, brother, and I put this baby through when she was about five and in her bossy, tattletale stage, but I won't. Let's just suffice it to say that we made her realize that we weren't going to put up with her crap, that's for sure! She continued to grow into a beautiful little girl. Like any big sister, I can remember dressing her up in pretty dresses and doing her hair. Once I did this so I could take pictures of her to draw for my high school art class. Yeah, I know that was a big time jump, but that's what I do. Anyway, she and I had to share a room for a lot of years. We had a nice big house with four bedrooms. But, Caradon got her own cause she was the oldest. And, Adam got his own cause he was the only boy. And, of course, my parents got their own. So, that left me and Sam. She was a good roommate for the most part. She wasn't too annoying and she would get out of bed when she was fast asleep at my insistence so my friend could have her bed and she would sleep on the floor. I was so nice! We had a little tapping code on our walls and to this day I only remember one code phrase, and I am not going to tell what it is, it's our secret. We sang little songs together and made videos together about little girls named Michelle or something like that.

When I was 18, I moved out of my parents house to go to college and left my baby in my brother's capable hands. While I was gone, I would hear stories about the amazing games of basketball she would play, or she would tell me all the latest gossip about her friends. I can remember watching my baby in many amazing plays, showing the world how talented she was (and still is to this day). One of her plays even made me cry! Of course, that's not very hard to do. A couple times she and I would dress up as clowns and go to the local country club to paint faces on the Fourth of July together. It was fun. We would go on walks and have long talks about her life and about her struggles with high school, friends, parents, and all that other kind of stuff when I moved back to Oregon. She has always been an amazing aunt to my kids and they love her more than me, I think! She was and is an amazing person.
One day, after many years of constantly coming to each other for advice and support, she came to me for some support that, in a way, I saw coming, but in another very big way, I didn't. She came to me in tears, holding her heart in her hand to let me know that she was in love with her best friend, who also happened to be a woman. I immediately put my arms around her and we hugged and I can remember thinking how badly I wanted to protect her, how badly I wanted to make everything perfect for her. For a long time, she fought those feelings, trying so hard to please everyone else and to do what she knew to be correct or right at the time. Over time, though, she began to feel that that wasn't what she wanted to do anymore. It was hard on our family for a while. I was so torn. I had to please my husband by supporting his feelings on this matter, but I also had to be true to myself by loving and supporting my baby the same way I had always done since she was born. But, time has a way of healing everything.

It has been a little over three years now since we had that tearful conversation on my bed. I remember it so well because it was on my wedding anniversary and I was holding my 6-month-old daughter in my arms. I can't say that my feelings on this matter have completely healed, and my beliefs are still very much the same. But, I can say that things are as normal now between us as they were before all of that happened. I have come to love Elise very much and I love having her as a part of our family. Sam and I still have our playful banter and Sam's relationship with Mike is back to normal, which I am truly grateful for because I don't have to serve as the mediator or messenger. My kids only know what they need to know about Sam--that she loves them more than life itself and there is nothing she wouldn't do for them. And, that she is tons of fun--way more than Mom is! Sam has always been my first baby. Nothing will ever change that, and nothing will ever stop me from loving her so very much. And, the only thing she had to do to win my affection was to be born, and that was it. Not many people can claim that they earned my affection so easily. I very much look forward to the future that Sam and I have to spend together. I am excited for the amazing things she is going to accomplish in her life, and I am happy for all the people in the world who are going to be better for knowing her. I am certainly a better person because of you, Sam. I love you so much.

Friday, February 11, 2011

My Son's Tender Heart

Tonight Audrey and Mike had a daddy-daughter date, so I got to spend the evening at home with my three youngest children. We decided to have a few little treats and watch a great movie called "Liar, Liar". Now, if you have seen this movie, you know the premise of it. It is basically about a father/son relationship. The dad is a lawyer (played very well by Jim Carrey) and he is always telling his son they will do things together and then backing out usually because of work. The little boy is devastated every time and feels sad that his dad lies to him all the time. So, on his birthday party he makes a wish that his dad can't tell a lie for a whole day. Well, the wish comes true and throughout a day of funny events, the dad finally comes to the realization that his son is so much more important than his job. He gets fired and runs to the airport to try to catch his son and ex-wife as they fly to Boston to look for a new home. He catches the little boy and at the end of the movie, there is a touching scene between Max and his dad where Fletcher (Jim Carrey) tells Max that he loves him so much and he never wants to be away from him again. Now, being me, I of course blubber at this point in the movie, because I tend to apply fictional movie plots to my own life and think about what I would do in that same situation. Well, I turned over to my son who was sitting next to me, and his little chin was quivering and tears were rolling down his face. I pulled him into a hug and asked what was wrong, and he said, "It's just so sad, Mom." I hugged him and reminded him that now the dad and the boy will get to be together all the time. He nodded his head, wiped his tears and after giving me one more hug, he was fine. It melted my heart. Now, I have only seen my own husband cry a handful of times in our marriage, so I know that Dallin didn't pick up this tender-heart-on-his-sleeve mentality from Mike. He got it from me. And, as proud as I am that Dallin is so much like his dad, there are other men in my life that I want Dallin to be like. First, my own dad, who, like Mike, rarely cries. The other, my brudder. Any of you who know Adam will know that he also has a tender heart. Maybe that is because he was raised by so many doting women, or maybe it's just who he is. As an adult, I haven't seen him cry in a very long time, years in fact. But, I can remember watching many movies as children and seeing him cry when animals or babies were in peril, or things just tugged at the old heart strings. Tonight's experience with Dallin gave me a glimpse into my son's tender heart and the fact that he is a strong, manly, truck-loving, paper-airplane-making, get-your-hands-dirty boy just like his dad was at his age. But, he is also a tender-hearted, artistic, kind, gentle, and sensitive boy as well, just like his Papa and his wonderful uncle Adam. I am so grateful that my children have such a good mix of both my side and Mike's. I love all my kids, but there's definitely something special about my one and only son. Sons hold such a special place in their mom's heart. I can only hope that he continues to be such a loving, kind man as he grows up. As long as he keeps getting teary-eyed at tender movies, I won't have to worry!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

My Challenge-Week 4

Well, as you all know, I haven't been doing so well since I became so inspired by my sister. Certainly not as well as she has done, but as everyone knows, you should never compare yourself to others, it just doesn't work. Everyone is different, with different strengths and weaknesses. But, today's weigh-in was great. I have lost 4.6 pounds this week! All that hard work paid off, or maybe it was the crying in the bathroom. Either way, I am doing well.

On a sadder note, I studied all day on Thursday for a quiz in Business Law. ALL DAY!! When I went to take it, I felt fairly confident that I would do well, but I scored a 44%. Not even kidding. My jaw literally dropped to the floor. Our teacher warned us that the average score on these quizzes was around 50%, but since I had gotten 88% on the first one, I felt like the smartest person in the world! Second quiz...not so much. It didn't help that the whole hour I was taking the quiz, the computer kept freezing on me, so the 50 minutes I was allotted only actually was about 35, plus two teenage boys were sitting at the computer across from me laughing and talking loudly the last 1/2 hour. I finally asked them to please be quiet, and they said, sorry, then went right back to being loud! I don't do well on tests in loud rooms. Ironically, we were in the library, and no one said anything to them. So frustrating. I vow that the next quiz will be much better, but at the same time, I sometimes feel like I might be taking on too much. My kids needed me that day, but I kept shooing them away because I was trying to study. Then, I got that crappy score and felt like my efforts weren't worth it. On a happier note, I scored 105% on my Spanish test. Now, that's more like it! =)

Monday, January 24, 2011

My Kick in the Pants

Well, I have to be honest. That's always what I teach my kids, so I have to be an example. And, if I am being honest and following in my big sis' footsteps at reporting how I am doing every week, well, bleh. That's all I can really say. I did HORRIBLY this week. There's all kinds of excuses I could throw out there: I was lifting weights, so I put on some poundage; I started my period; I was stressed out because of school...But, really, what it boils down to is this: I binged. I don't know what my deal is. Am I trying to subconsciously sabotage myself? Maybe. Do I really want to gain every week as I have been since I started this blog? No. I went to Weight Watchers on Saturday morning, bright and early with two of my best buddies, Carina and Kim. Thank goodness they were there, because if Kim hadn't coaxed me out of the bathroom, I would have stayed in there the whole meeting crying into my soggy piece of toilet paper! As I mentioned, I gained, but the REAL kick in the pants was that I am back over 200. I am at 200.2. When I told this to Mike, he snickered a little and said one good poo would put me back under 200! He's right, but the point is that there was a "2" in front of my number again, which I promised myself would never happen! You have to understand that when I ran my half-marathon in October, I was right around 186. Maybe it's the winter blahs, maybe it's the crap that I ate over the holidays, who knows. I do know that seeing that 2 in front of my weight really gave me a reality check. Tears were shed, and resolutions were made, and I am proud to say that so far, I have kept those resolutions. I know, I know, I am only two days into it, but that number really affected me. It's so complicated, weight loss. Caradon, I think you are truly the only person who can really know what I mean, especially in regards to the pressure we get from ourselves and other individuals who are important in our lives. One thing I can say positive out of all this, is I realized just how supportive my husband is, after he tried to comfort me with visions of said bathrooms. HE. RAN. FIVE. MILES. WITH. ME! Who out there can say that they ran five miles in just under an hour, laughing, and talking with their husband, enjoying the fresh morning air, sun peeking out from behind the clouds? I can! And, I think it ranks up there really high with some of the best moments of my life. At the end, he wasn't complaining; in fact, he said how much fun he had and how we need to do this every Saturday. I love that man!! So, now that I have had my kick in the pants, I will be proud to report in next week!! Now, is there any wood around here for me to knock on? Just in case? ;)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

My First Week Ended

Well, if I have to be honest, I will tell you all that I am extremely disappointed in myself. Instead of losing a pound and a half this week, I gained two. I really don't know what happened! Either I didn't keep careful enough track of my intake or something, but whatever it was, it has made me feel horrible. So, this week I need to lose 3 in order to get back to where I need to be! I have done it before and I know that I can do it again, but it might be hard. I made myself a poster that has a whole bunch of pictures and positive sayings on it that I hung in my room. Hopefully, it will serve as some inspiration.

On a more positive note, Mike and I celebrated 12 years of wedded mostly-bliss. I can't believe that we have been married that long! We've been a couple for 14!! And, even after all that time, I still love him just as much as I did when we first met and my heart still jumps a little when he walks into a room. It's nice to be married to your best friend. Plus, he's given me the four most beautiful and sweet children in the world as a bonus!! I sure do love that boy. I can't wait to spend a week with him on a cruise to the Carribbean in August!! It will be wonderful!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

My Snuggle Date

Last night I had an awesome date. It wasn't with Mikey (although of course that would have been awesome) and it wasn't with some other studly man. Well, okay, maybe it was...but he wasn't the only one!! I had two amazing women with me as well! Claire fell asleep pretty early, and so did Mikey since he had to go to work so early this morning, so I got to have a snuggle date with Dallin, Emma, and Audrey. Now, I call it a snuggle date because Audrey claimed that I really don't snuggle her much. Kids have such picky memories, don't they? In my mind, my snuggle time with my kids is quite a lot considering how I don't really snuggle. But, I decided to show her, so I popped some popcorn and we sat in our HUGE armchair (it really is huge--it holds me AND Mike!) and we SNUGGLED! Emma and Dallin sat on the couch and we all flipped through Netflix. Anyone who doesn't have this, I would highly recommend it. I am hooked. It is only ten dollars a month, DVDs come in the mail and we can watch instant movies through our Wii which we just got for Christmas. Yes, we are finally joining the 21st century after a decade of actually being in it. Anyway, I decided to show them what funny, mindless entertainment really is, so we turned on Pee-Wee's Big Adventure. Anyone who was alive in 1986 knows how popular Pee-Wee Herman was back then, and I am glad to say that he still entertains five-through-ten-year-olds as much today as he did back in 1986. Anyway, they loved it and Audrey and I snuggled like no one has ever snuggled before. Sam, you are jealous. Let's hope this snuggle date stays in Audrey's memory bank this time!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

My Inspirations

Hello all,
I have been inspired by my wonderful sister, Caradon, to write this blog. She has taken a highly courageous step on her blog. She has posted pictures of herself, her weight, her measurements and everything as a starting point for a year-long journey she is going to take. She is going to try to lose 104 pounds in a year. That is a huge deal! I am so proud of her. Can I also take a moment to tell you, Caradon, that being your sister has always made me feel like I was on top of the world? I can remember many times throughout my school years bragging that I was your sister to my teachers or friends. In college, I loved being able to walk over to your apartment to hang out with my cool sister and her cool friends! When I met Mike, you were the first person I wanted to tell. When I got pregnant with my children, you were the first person I told (after Mike of course). I want you to know that I KNOW YOU CAN DO THIS!! Don't ever tell yourself you can't. I never would have thought a year ago that I would be able to run a half marathon without stopping to walk even once. Yet, I did it. I am so excited that you are possibly going to do it with me this year. It will be the best day of my life. I will have my husband, my beautiful sister, my awesome brother, my wonderful sister-in-law, and one of my dearest friends, Becky, join me.

So, to continue this blog after that tearful little interlude, I want to tell everyone that Caradon, along with countless other friends and family, have inspired me to get to where I am now. But, I have so much more to go. I will take your initiative, Caradon, and I will post my own weight, meaurements and story for the world to see. So, here it goes.

At my highest weight (excluding having just given birth, or being a nursing mother) I weighed 246 pounds, not much less than Caradon does now. Sadly, though, I don't have the lucky height that Caradon has, so I was quite a bit more portly. I will show you what I mean. This is me in December of 2005. Since this time, I have lost 50 pounds, which puts me at 196. Yay for me that I am under 200 pounds finally, but I do have a lot longer to go. I still want to lose 46 more pounds. So, I am using Caradon as my inspiration, as I have countless other times in my life, and I am going to take on this challenge for myself that she has made for herself! Except, I have a bit of a shorter time frame. I would like to lose my 46 pounds before August 14th, 2011. That is the day Mike and I will (hopefully) leave for a cruise to the Caribbean! We never had a honeymoon and we are celebrating 12 years of marriage on January 15th, so we figure it's about time we do something nice for ourselves.

Now, anyone who knows me at all, knows that I am a math and numbers girl. So, if you do the math, you will see that this gives me 31 weeks to fulfill my goal. 46 divided by 31 is 1.48 pounds per week. Even numbers are a good thing, so the goal will be to lose 1.5 pounds per week and I WILL be at my goal by August 14th. My measurements are as follows: Chest 43", Waist 39", Hips 45", Thighs 24", Arms 12". Here is a recent picture of me:

Some might think these pictures aren't too bad, and compared to the picture up above, they really aren't too bad. But, I am excited to see what I look like as I progress. I will post a written blog every week to keep everyone up on my progress, and I will post more pictures every two months. I know we can do this, Caradon!! We WILL be successful and we will be triumphant! I love you. Wish me luck, everyone!!
P.S. Anyone know how to delete pictures after I have posted them on my blog? If you can let me know, that'd be awesome!! ;)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

My Lack of Motivation

Hello All,
Sorry it has been so long since I last wrote. Things have been busy. Christmas was extra hectic this year because we hosted a week-long reunion with all of Mike's siblings, their families, and Mike's parents. It was crazy, but we had a lot of fun. Things definitely seem empty and quiet around here now and Audrey has observed many times how "plain" the house looks now that we no longer have our decorations up.

On a better note, the kids are back in school, my house is mostly recovered, I still have my hair, and I have re-lost five of the ten pounds I gained while Mike's family was here. I thought that with the new year would come a new and resounded motivation for me to get back on track. But, alas, it has not yet arrived. I have done everything in my power to get it to come to me, but I just can't seem to convince myself that to stop eating so many sweets is actually a good thing! I will get there, though. 2011 is my year, I can feel it! There is a slim chance that Mike and I might be able to go on a cruise through Jamaica and the Carribbean for a week in August, so I will use that for my motivation. It may be a pipe dream at this point, but I will cling to it with all my might. Maybe the thought of me lounging on the beach with my honey looking like a large member of the ocean life, (rather than the svelte, sexy woman that is in there just dying to come out) will be enough of a push to find my motivation. In the meantime, the mirror will have to do! Happy New Year, everyone! I hope 2011 brings with it everything wonderful for you and your families!!