Monday, February 27, 2006

Sticker shock!

I think I've figured out why dinosaurs are extinct. Seen here is the Laurenpostistickysaurus.

Poor thing didn't have a chance when it came face-to-face with the yellow post it.

As you can see, my daughter has a sticker fetish. She's been this way since she was about 2. I think it started when we tried potty training. Every time she went in the potty, she got to put a sticker on her chart. We kept all kinds of stickers on hand for such occassions. Princess stickers, animal stickers, heart stickers, Dora stickers, bug name it! She even learned that she could make her own sticker by putting tape on the back of a regular piece of paper. I have a bunch of llamas and red-eyed tree frog pictures on my refrigerator that she printed up from the Dora the Explorer website, colored and slapped a piece of sticky tape to the back. I also have souveniers of left over sticky residue throughout my house where I tried to peel off the sticker and only 2/3 of it actually came off.

So, when her Grandma Hagen gave her candy heart stickers for Valentine's Day, one can only imagine the fun that was had at our house. I didn't think Grandma would believe me if I told her where the stickers ended up so I thought I'd take a few pictures to be entered in as evidence.

And the most pathetic one of all........

I guess I should count my blessings. Atleast it's not a sharpie.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

My Olympic size commentary

Ahhh. The Olympics. A time for countries around the world to come together all in the name of good, clean competition and fun. And if winning a medal or breaking a World Record happens in the process, that's an added bonus.

Speaking of medals...I'm not sure if it's a gold medal or the Greatest Solid Gold Hits CD.

And speaking of greatest hits..... I think it's time for a commercial break:

((Video clip is showing Lindsey Jacobellis on her snowboarding cross medal race))

Announcer says:

Cost of snowboard: $500.00
Cost of lift tickets to train for the 2006 Olympics: $5000.00
Cost of hot-dogging in the medal round race while 3 seconds ahead and falling only to be passed by a Swiss: priceless

Now back to our regularly scheduled blog....

Is it just me or are our peeps just not represent'n this year? I mean, seriously? No wonder "American Idol" is kicking the snot out of the Olympics' ratings. I personally would much rather watch amateur Idol wannabes over some of the arrogant athletes we have representing the good 'ol US of A. Heck, I'll even admit to watching "Dancing with the Stars". Atleast they've gotten some better scores.

I will also admit to getting into watching curling. I'll be honest. I mostly started to watch it because it came on right after my "Days Of Our Lives". I still don't really know the rules, but I do know that watching it gives me incentive to sweep my floors. So my clean tile is a perfect "10".

Every Olympics has to have a controversy too. At first, I thought is was the great debate over how we should pronounce the location of the Olympics. Is it "Torino" or "Turin"? Frankly, I still don't have a clue.

But sure enough, that controversy seemed minor compared to the ones that lie ahead......

Where do I even start? There seem to have been more flops than shows on the WB channel.

First we have Bode "Miller Lite" Miller. I mean, sure he's a piece of eye candy, but good looks won't get you down a mountain if you have a hang-over from the night before
. Maybe he could hide it because it was in one of those swishing from side-to-side events so nobody would even notice? His ego was the size of the motorhome he came in on. The point is, I don't think he medalled in a single race. So much for that Wheaties contract.

And then there's the train wreck called Johnny Weir. I saw the touchy-feely-tug-at-your-heartstrings interview NBC showed with him right before he performed his short program at Nationals. He said something about how "Republicans don't like me blah blah blah" and "people talk about me because I'm different blah blah blah." I'm thinking, "People? What people? I've never even heard of you until this very moment." Besides that, what does a Republican have to do with whether he lands a Salchow or triple lutz? He was so full of himself that I secretly hoped that my mojo would cause him to fall.....not so much literally, but fall from the imaginary pedestal he thought everyone had him on. He ended up in 6th place overall. Must have been that vast, right-wing conspiracy mojo.....

There's Apollo "OH NO!" Ohno. I guess he has a Gold, Silver and now a Bronze to add to his collection. I don't know. It just didn't seem like he was really trying all that hard to win. It just wasn't like I remembered when I watched him skate in Salt Lake City.

Time for another commercial break:

((Footage of Italian Ice Dancers and their fall.....Next shot is of the female giving a stare down to her partner ))

Caption reads: "Wanna get away?"

And we're back....

I am really bummed that Sasha Cohen didn't do better in her long program.
And to miss the first two jumps! OUCH! I felt bad for her. But, I'm glad she got a silver. I was rooting for Emily Hughes too especially since her trip there was so last minute.

Aside from all of the controversy and disappointments, there's always good stories that come from the Olympics too. Joey Cheek donated both his gold and silver medal bonuses, a total of $40,000 to "Right-to-play" an athlete-driven humanitarian organization.

Now there's a real champion.

Friday, February 17, 2006

A "weighty" subject.

My daughter got on the scale yesterday and asked, "Mom? How much do I weigh?"

I looked and then answered "45 pounds".

Her reaction to this news took me a little by surprise. She replies to me in a high-pitched-disappointed-whiny voice, "OHHHhhhhh. But I wanted to weigh MORE than that!"

Come again?

I'm pretty confident that those words never have and never WILL fall out of my mouth. And I've got 20 post-pregnancy pounds that have taken up residence around various regions on my body to prove it. And that whole "it took 9 months to put it on, give yourself 9 months to take it off" philosophy? Well, that's as full of it as calories in a pint of Ben and Jerry's Chubby Hubby ice cream!

I'm trying though. Really. I am. I'm doing Weight Watchers again. By "again", I don't mean I fell off the wagon. By "again", I mean, I did it before I got pregnant with Erik. I must admit though that it has been a lot harder this time around. I've determined that whoever it was that invented ready-made cookie dough is evil. And that a family of 5 ( yes, I'm counting the baby because trust me... "4" will sound a whole lot worse! ) should never buy a Costco Cheesecake.

I actually feel bad right now because I finally got the baby down for a nap and I really did contemplate putting in my "Firm" video and exercising. But, where did I end up? Sitting here blogging about my weight and eating popcorn. It is the 94% Fat Free Kettle Corn. Only 3 points per bag in Weight Watchers speak. And I could have sworn I read somewhere that typing burns calories so I'm sure that must be worth an "activity point" or two. Besides, if I don't feel bad about what my driver's license says I weigh, I probably shouldn't feel THAT bad about it. Now, if I were to maybe adjust my scale a little in my favor....I might feel bad about that.

Watching the Olympics doesn't help either. Neither does watching the chicks on "Survivor" who were wiry enough when they got there and have to witness them getting more and more transparent every week. 'Cause seeing all of those people and their stellar in-shape shapes would be enough to drive someone to eat a Krispy Kreme or two, I'd reckon. Not that I've done that myself. I'm just saying......

Monday, February 13, 2006

For the love of a song!

Most couples I know have "a song".

It's usually something full of cheese like "You Are So Beautiful" or "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love." But, at least they have a song. My husband and I don't.

We don't even have some '80's hair band monster ballad like "When I See You Smile" or "Is This Love".

I'm not sure why we don't. We went to enough church dances while we were dating, you'd think we would. It didn't really even phase me until one night when we played a get-to-know-you game with some other couples and one of the questions was, "What is 'your song'?" I remember feeling ashamed to have to admit that we didn't have one. GASP! Every couple has 'a song'! I had songs for the guys I dated in high school. Naturally, something by Journey or Styx. I even know of some ex-couples who have a "break up" song like the popular anthem, "I Will Survive." So, I had to make one up on the spur of the moment. There was just too much pressure. So I came up with "500 Miles". Not exactly what you would call a romantic song, but it had sentimental meaning. I thought of it because it was a song that a band was playing as we were walking down Mill Ave. in downtown Tempe one night. The band was really good and I remember we got us some hot chocolate and sat and listened to them play for most of the night. It seemed like a logical choice and I was pretty excited at the prospect of actually being able to reply "of course we have a song!"

Evidently, that was my husband's and an ex-girlfriend's song. Of all the %$#&* songs it had to be THAT one!?!

So then I looked up the words to the song. They actually seemed ironically fitting and so maybe, just maybe, I can convince my husband to make "500 Miles" our song. If anything, just to put me out of my misery!

When I wake up yeah I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man who wakes up next to you.
When I go out yeah I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man who goes along with you.

When I'm working yes I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man who's working hard for you.
And when the money comes in for the work I'll do
I'll pass almost every penny on to you.

When I come home yeah I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man who comes back home to you.
And if I grow old well I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man who's growing old with you.

When I'm lonely yes I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the man whose lonely without you.
When I'm dreaming yes I know I'm gonna dream
Dream about the time when I'm with you.

Just don't try and convince me that every couple has "A movie" too. That's just way too much gouda for me to handle!

Happy Valentine's Day honey!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Life lessons learned in Kindergarten

Every day, my daughter brings home a notebook from her kindergarten class. In it is a page for the month with marks in either green, yellow or red. Green means she had a great day. Yellow means she had to get a warning. Red means...well...we don't want to really go there.

We moved a month after school started so Lauren not only started school for the first time in her life, but she had to do it twice within a month. I felt bad. I remembered what it was like being the "new" kid except I at least had a twin that I knew would be there with me. After her first week at the new school, I noticed Lauren started bringing home yellow marks with notes from the teacher saying "Doesn't complete her work" and "Doesn't follow directions". The momma bear in me first wanted to protect my daughter. "What do you MEAN? My child is perfect!" Then a few weeks later, Lauren came home with a note from the teacher along with a packet of work 18 pages long that she hadn't completed in class. The note said something to the effect of "Teach your children that they need to complete their work at school. This is not to replace their regular homework." I knew something wasn't right. I felt guilty because maybe she was having a hard time adjusting or making friends. But, being the type-A personality that she is, Lauren completed all of those pages that night without me having to say a word ( is that normal? ). Needless to say, her teacher was very impressed. Monday morning, Lauren was moved from the green table to the orange table.

It wasn't until I volunteered for the first time in her class that I understood why she was getting those yellow marks. Her name was Shelby. Shelby is a fun but very talkative little girl. The girl who wouldn't do her work without telling you first about her stuffed puppy or little sister. Being new, Lauren probably didn't know the routine and thought it was fun to talk to Shelby. But, the fact is that since she has been at the orange table, she has had green marks every day.

Amazing what a change in color can do for someone.

I volunteered again this last week. One of my jobs was to put a flier in the children's folders to take home to their parents. While doing so, I noticed the colored marks they had each received. A few of the children had a page full of green. Several had green splashed with a little yellow. Others had almost all yellow. I don't recall seeing any red. I know Lauren is obsessed with the color she receives for the day and is proud of her accomplishment at having a whole page filled with green.

So, I thought about those green, yellow and red marks and wondered about which color I would receive in my folder. I'd probably be worthy of a green mark if I accomplished the goals that I had set for myself that day. If I was able to get my work done in a timely manner. I might get a yellow mark on the days that I need a little extra push. Maybe I didn't play with the kids as much as I should have or didn't get done what I needed to do. Unfortunately, I probably have deserved a red mark or two as well. For those times I yelled at my kids because I was impatient or was short with my husband.

I thought about how different our folders might be from one another. There are some who probably would get a green mark every day. Some might have green with splashes of yellow. Others might have almost all yellow. Sadly, some may have some red mixed in as well. I thought about what it might be like seeing those marks in our folders serving as a constant reminder of how we are doing in our life. Are we progressing? Are we doing what we have been asked to do? Are we going the extra mile? Are we being kind to others? We all have distractions, or "Shelbys" in our lives. It's sometimes hard to stay focused on the things that we need to do. But making the effort to change those things we can change will give us the opportunity to better ourselves. And the wonderful thing is that once our page is full, we can start over fresh with a new one.

Amazing what a change in color can do for us.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


So I got tagged. And I have to say this was harder than it looked!

Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot, like so.

1. ProfessorMe
2. MusicalMom
3. SheBooksIt
4. Lee
5. Lisa

Next select five people to tag:
1. Steph
2. SuAnn
3. Jeannette
4. Katy
5. Bela

Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:
Pay off the house
Take a long vacation
Set up a trust fund
Make a generous fast offering

Five bad habits:

Keep things to myself, don't make my bed everyday, impatient, don't deal well with stupid people, procrastinate

Five things you like doing:
crafts, decorating, playing volleyball, being a homebody, pilates

Five things you would never wear again:
bell bottoms, neon, plaid, the colors brown and pink together, polyester

Five favorite toys:
computer, breadmaker, stickermaker, camera, stamps

Get me to the church on time

The church meeting schedule in our last ward started at 8:00am. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to do the math and figure out how many times we made it on time. I'll give you a hint... you only need one hand to count.

So then we moved. We could hardly contain our giddiness when we found out that our new ward started at 10:15am. The perfect, blessed time. The time envied by others. Time enough for a little sleeping in, yet still have time enough to get ready. The time that gave you the whole afternoon for such Sunday activities like taking a nap or reading a good book. The time talked about when we had the 8:00am time saying, "If only we met at 10:00am. We would make it on time then!"

We were still perpetually late.

So, at the start of the new year, our time changed yet again. It is now 1:00pm. Along with this time change came a change in the length of the block. We only meet for 2 1/2 hours instead of the usual three hours. ( The church IS true! ) Yet here we are in mid February and we still can't quite get it together. Sure, I could blame it on the drive. What took us 30 seconds by car before ( yes, we drove even though we only lived 7 houses down from the church ), now takes us 2 minutes. We have a stop sign to go through now. That takes time.

It also takes more time because we have a baby. The baby needs to be dressed and fed before we go. I'm the only one who can really do that. So, it takes me longer to get ready. Even longer if I have time to put on makeup and do my hair. It takes time to make sure there are enough toys and snacks for the kids. Time needs to be budgeted for wardrobe malfunctions and the occasional pantyhose run...assuming I have time to put on the pantyhose. Then there's the "extra" time that needs to be added because Kirk has no concept of time. Then there's lunch time before we leave. Time it takes to load the car. Time for when we forgot something and have to run back in the house. And of course, time for the weekly tantrum from the three year old because he doesn't want to wear a sweater.

I need a nap. Is it Sunday yet?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

He's crawling

My 8 1/2 month old is crawling.

That statement right there is enough to make other moms give me that nod and look of "Ohhhhhh" and show pity on me. That is because they know, and I know that this is the phase that takes "baby proofing" to a whole new level. Oh sure, if it's your first child, you can't WAIT for this milestone. When it's your second, third or hold off as long as you can. That's because you know better.

In my son's new found exploration, I have discovered many objects in his mouth. Enough that I decided to make a list ( *see previous blog ):

1. post it paper
2. balmex top
3. piece of cooked onion
4. a rock
5. a button
6. same previously mentioned piece of cooked onion
7. piece of tape
8. Polly Pocket outfit
9. Piece of a diaper
10. string
11. a barrette

12. rubber end of a doorstop

So what have I learned?

A. My child is a human vacuum
B. I have a filthy floor
C. Mom needs to pay closer attention to her child
D. All of the above

Anyone seen a brain around here?

I've discovered over the last 5 years or so that if you choose to have children, you also must understand that a few brain cells will be lost in the process. I'm not quite sure WHEN this happens. Maybe it is biological. Maybe it begins at conception or during labor. Maybe it's chemical. The laundry soap? Smelling too many nasty diapers? Maybe it's mental caused by constantly having to repeat myself. Heaven knows I talk like a blabbering fool sometimes. Heck, I'm lucky if I remember my children's names anymore.

All I know is that back in the day, I could keep a mental note of things to do in my head. Not to brag, but I could remember probably up to 20 things at a time that needed to be done. I was effecient, organized and driven. Now, I can't even remember if I brushed my teeth. And the only thing driven is my daughter when I take her to school. Just loading the dishwasher becomes a long, drawn out ordeal that goes something like this:

1. Open dishwasher
2. Stop to wipe baby's face
3. Remember daughter needs to get dressed for school
4. Smell something coming from baby
5. Diaper change
6. Take diaper to garbage but it is overflowing
7. Take out garbage
8. Notice a child dragged in sand from the sandbox
9. Get broom and sweep floor
10. Forgot to put another bag in the garbage can
11. See checkbook on counter and remember a bill is due
12. Write check
13. Lunch time
14. Make sandwiches
15. Clear lunch table and put dirty dishes in the sink.
16. Remember what it was you started doing in the first place

So, I've learned I need to make lists. You'll find these lists all over the house because I forget where I put the last list. I make lists for things like groceries and cleaning. I make reminder lists like when my daughter's snack day will be or her upcoming fieldtrip and a sub-list as an extra reminder that she needs to bring a sack lunch and money. I have my "to do" list for things like finding a babysitter and paying bills. I've even mastered what paper works best for my "lists." While I like the sticky post-it for short term things that need to be done, I have a pad of 4 X 6 paper that I find works best for those long "to do" lists.

The word must have gotten out about my great list making skills because I'm now the Secretary in the Relief Society Presidency doing, you guessed it... I make lists. Lists of the women, lists of birthdays, lists of who is pregnant, lists of who needs compassionate service, lists of email addresses, lists of who is teaching and lists of schedules.


What was my point? Oh yeah....... How I've lost a few brain cells.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Latest addiction

I discovered something that is actually more addicting than Diet Vanilla Coke.

Stock trading.

It IS an addiction. The thrill! The excitement! The anticipation! I actually look forward to seeing the left side of my Yahoo home page every weekday morning to see how my portfolio is doing. I have a ritual. I close my eyes and say a little prayer that I will see more green numbers than black ones (green=good/black=bad). I find myself going through withdrawals every weekend and holiday…..longing for 7:30am the next trading day to come.

I’ve even implemented new words and phrases into my vocabulary such as, “buy low, sell high”, P/E ratios, volatility, the ”Google effect”, stop loss, dividend yield and diversification. I’ve learned some expletives too but I don’t feel the need to list those.

I see acronyms such as IPO, MOT, DNA and KO the same way I see LOL, ROTFL, BTDT and DH.

Since I started trading for myself in August ( shameless tooting of my own horn ahead ), my portfolio has increased 20%. Now, I’m not saying that all of my “picks” have done well ( Supertex comes to mind. My husband is never allowed to give me advice on stocks ever again! ) and I've had my fair share of "Maalox moments" but I think that’s pretty good for a first timer. I thought I’d list the ones that have done me well and maybe others could benefit from a tip or two.

Google ( GOOG )
Advanced Micro Devices ( AMD )
Allegheny Tech ( ATI )
Valero ( VLO )
Peabody Energy ( BTU )
Starbucks ( SBUX ) and YES… I own Starbucks.
Ralph Lauren ( RL )
Halliburton ( HAL )

You'd think we owned Coca Cola too with all of the Coke we drink but we don't.

My husband asks me every day if he can “retire” yet. My reply is always the same. “No dear”. It would be nice to one day make more in the stock market than his salary. One can dream…

In the meantime, I need to get some sleep. The market opens in 10 hours.

Which reminds me, I think I need to crack open another Vanilla Coke…


I'm "Cool".

That's what my 5 year old daughter said to me the other day. Now, lest you think my daughter a snob, I should clarify that "Cool" in this particular context wasn't used in the form of an adjective. Not even the slang term coined in the 1980's. No, this "Cool" was actually her pretend "name".

Lauren, my 5 year old, came to me the other day wearing my sunglasses. She informed me that she was NOT my daughter Lauren, but rather her name was Cool. When I asked Lauren, I mean, Cool, where my daughter went, she told me that she was at a hotel.

Ahhhh........ that makes sense.

My first thought was, "I'D like to be at a hotel right now." But, I digress.... I then informed Cool that Lauren needed to get her shoes on and get ready to go to school. Cool told me she would pass the message on to Lauren for me. She came back in the room without glasses on so I assumed she had gotten my message.

I made sure Lauren knew that Cool couldn't go to school with her. She was ok with that. Cool wanted to stay at the hotel anyways.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

blah blog, blah blog, blah blog......

So....I'm offically a "blogger". I've read other people's blogs and I've come to the conclusion that there is one big difference between "my" blog and theirs. In my case, I don't think that I have much of anything to say. I wouldn't say I am witty. I wouldn't say I'm very good with words either. I can't keep a journal so I don't know how well I'm going to do with this. But I figure if anything, maybe this will be good therapy. lol

So here's my stats...

I'm 35, married to Kirk for going on 7 years now ( 4/1/99 ). We have a beautiful daughter, Lauren, who is 5, a handsome son, Jack, who is 3 and a new (?) baby boy, Erik, who is 8 months. You could say that there is never a dull moment at our house. I often wonder where the days go. They get away from me so fast!

I enjoy music and all things crafty. I even have a room in my house I call "craftdom" solely for the purpose of exersizing my craftiness. Oh, I don't actually have the TIME to craft, I just like to say that I have a room at least that is mine to DO crafts one of these days. In fact, all of my supplies are still packed up in boxes.

You might wonder why they are still in boxes. Well, that is because we just moved. We left the beautiful home my husband and I designed and built, and moved to a bigger, more spacious home. We do love our new home, and with a few of our own personal touches it will feel like "ours". It's just that it has been many, many years since I've lived in a home where we weren't the first occupants. It's hard to leave the one home you lived in for so long and with so many memories. But, we'll just have to make new ones!