Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Lucky number 7


That itching is of the seven year variety.

Saturday, April 1st is our 7th Anniversary. Hard to believe! It's harder to believe we've been together for ten. Even harder? We've known each other for 16! Where does time go?

I was thinking about what kind of gifts we could give each other. So I looked up "the list" to see what you get someone for a 7th Anniversary. Ready for this? Wool or copper. Now living in about the hottest state in the country, a wool sweater wouldn't be the "coolest" of gifts. And copper? I heard that people with joint ailments feel better if they wear a copper bracelet. But that would just force me to admit I'm getting old and I'm not ready to go there yet.

Atleast it's not last years gift idea. Iron. Yes. Iron. Iron suppliments? A horseshoe? An actual iron perhaps? Which reminds husband was forwarned before we even got married that I. Don't. Do. Ironing. And he married me anyways inspite of his daily ridicule by his co-workers. So, could you imagine if he actually followed the Anniversary ettiquite and gave me "an iron" last year? Can you even imagine? I would like to think that men would do better thinking of something on their own than following that kind of guideline. A last minute box of candy and some flowers is a far better choice than giving the one you love an iron. Or suppliments. Or a horseshoe.

That's why, as far as I'm concerned, every Anniversary should be "gold and or any other precious metal or sparkly gem". Forget the clock or aluminum. Just keep it simple. Keep it easy to remember. Say it with me now....."Kay Jewelers". You can walk right on in the store and know that you could buy anything from there and call it good.

So, in honor of our Anniversary, I'd like to remind my husband of the reasons why I married him. In 7th Anniversary style:

7 reasons why I love you:

1. Your quirkiness

2. Your brains

3. Your humor

4. You love Coke products as much as I do

5. I rarely cook meat and you love me anyways

6. We have a lot of the same dreams

7. How you calm me and ease my fears

7 things I love that you have given me:

1. Lauren

2. Jack

3. Erik

4. A beautiful home

5. Just about anything I ask for

6. Yellow roses for my birthday and Anniversaries

7. My wedding ring and bands

7 things you have taught me:

1. Patience

2. Love

3. Respect

4. Commitment

5. That no matter how much you try......I will never like sushi

6. That it's ok to have "me" times

7. To be selfless

7 fondest memories:

1. December 23, 1998. The day you proposed at the Phoenician

2. April 1, 1999. Our Wedding day

3. The birth of our children

4. Our family Disneyland trip in February 2005

5. Our Anniversary cruises

6. Honeymoon in Hawaii

7. April 1, 2000. Moving into our first home

7 saddest memories:

1. Lauren breaking her arm.....twice when she was 2

2. Our miscarriage

3. Losing my Grandma

4. Moving out of our first home we built and loved

5. September 11, 2001

6. Losing your job the same week we were closing on our new house and when I was 6 months pregnant. Major stress!

7. Sending a child to school for the first time and realizing that they are growing up too fast

7 of our funnest or funniest memories:

1. Helicopter ride in Hawaii and the video to prove it

2. Taking Lauren all the way to Disneyworld when she was 3 just to hear her scream "I wanna go home! I wanna go home!" during every ride including "It's a Small World". She did like the airplane ride and the "Up and down nay nays" aka the carousel. It was a good thing she was "free"

3. Flying on a whim to New York City and being in Time's Square with a million of our closest friends for the December 31, 1999 New Year's Eve party

4. Walks down Mill Ave.

5. Hanging out in New Orleans

6. Winning the "twist" contest on our first cruise together

7. Seeing the excitement in Lauren and Jack at Disneyland

7 things we look forward to:

1. Retirement

2. Watching our children grow up

3. The time when you won't have to travel so much

4. Our "Golden" Anniversary

5. Taking trips together

6. Uninterrupted sleep

7. Being together forever

The last seven years have been full of joy and happiness with a little sadness here and there. I think of all of the memories we have made and the ones that lie ahead for us.

My husband keeps asking me if I have that "itch" yet. I keep reassuring him that the only "itch" I have is the kind that is itching for the next 7 years to be as happy as the first.

HaPpY Anniversary!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Bears and Bulls

And no. I'm not talking Chicago Sports teams.

I'm talking stock market world. There are "bears" and there are "bulls".

Bears are people who short stocks that they don't yet own hoping to buy them after the shares go down in price and then deliver them to the owner. They are pessimests and often skeptical. They are known for bringing the market down.

Bulls buy a stock with the expectation and hope that the price will go up. They tend to be optimistic and hopeful. They are known for bringing the market up.

Let me give you an example:

Bears might take a slowed economy, rising health care costs, rising interest rates and higher gas prices as a bad thing and cause a panic and sell off on related stocks.

While those data points may be true, Bulls might take a different approach and see an opportunity for future growth in stocks related to healthcare, banking or oil.

I've thought about it and realize that there might be a similarity between "bulls" and "bears" in the stock market, and the "bulls" and "bears" in life.

Some bears in life are pessimistic and skeptical. Sometimes, bears like to intimidate people and tear them down. They sell themselves and others short rather than look ahead and see their potential growth. They might see their glasses as half empty.

Bulls in life, are hopeful. They see the good in others and recognize their unlimited potential. They are encouraging and patient. They set long term goals with the understanding that growth takes time. They might see their glasses as half full.

Commodities in the market are things such as precious metals or life sustaining resources like grains, cattle or oil. These commodities can be traded or sold as "futures" which is a contract or obligation to buy the product in the future. To guarantee that payment will be made, futures often have a margin requirement that must be settled on a daily basis.

Isn't this a lot like our lives? We are commodities. We are precious and in need of life sustaining resources to survive. We have made a futures contract ourselves. It is with our Heavenly Father. This contract for our future states that we promised to return and live with Him again someday. But, like the market dictates, we too, must settle our payments on a daily basis. We can do this through prayer, fasting, paying our tithing, repentance and obeying the commandments. This takes commitment and patience. There will always be good days and bad days. Highs and lows if you will. Just like the market. But we must remember to never, ever sell ourselves short.

We need hope and patience with ourselves and with one another. Keeping our eye on the goal is the key. If we can understand that, then I believe the return on our investment will be far more than we could ever imagine.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Got snow?

Since my husband went out of town on business over my daughter's spring break ( Yeah. That wasn't a good conversation when I found that out ), I decided to venture out and take the kids up to the mountains to play in the new fallen snow. This was a big deal for me for a couple of reasons:

1.. I have never so much as even gone to Walmart by myself with three kids in tow before.

2. I grew up back east and remember shoveling my fair share of snow in below freezing temperatures while looking like the Stay Puffed Marshmallow Man. Been there. Done that. Bought the t-shirt. I'd rather take three kids to Walmart.

Maybe I got a bad attitude about the snow from back in my single days. One New Year's Eve, a bunch of my friends and I decided it would be fun to go snow camping. "Thought" is the key word here. What on earth were we thinking? I had 100 layers of clothes and blankets on me and I swore all night as I layed wide awake that I was going to freeze a slow, bitter -cold death. It was the kind of cold that makes your teeth hurt. So cold, that in the middle of the night when I needed to go to the bathroom, I actually contemplated just using my sleeping bag because I could handle the humiliation more than the freezing cold. Funny thing was that my husband was there to share in the experience with me. But little did I know that 10 years later we'd be dating let alone getting married. It was one of those experiences we will talk about when we want to drive a point home to our children about not doing stupid things. That story and one about Co2 bombs.

But I digress......
It is nice to live where we do because if I wanted Jack Frost to nip at my toes, I know I just have to drive an hour to do so. Otherwise, my idea of "winter" is a chilly 70 degrees, a windbreaker and sipping hot chocolate because I WANT to not because I HAVE to.

So, we dusted off the "winter" coats, scrounged around for some hats and gloves ( could only find one pair so poor Jack used Erik's socks! ), packed some snacks and extra clothes, timed the drive during Erik's nap time, said a little prayer and off we went.

Erik had never seen snow before. I don't think he was real impressed about it either.
Every picture I took of him, he had his tongue sticking out.

There's snow buddy like a Snow Buddy!

Like two Angels are alike:

The Gang:

We had a fun time. We made snow angels and had lunch. We played "hide and seek" and had snowball fights. Jack never did quite figure out that when big sister throws a snowball at you, you should throw one back. Not run around screaming and crying. When it was time to go, the kids were ready. Jack kept mumbling something about "I miss home."

How does that saying go? Oh yeah. "It's a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there."

Friday, March 17, 2006

Irony or dumb luck?

I heard the Alanis Morissette song "Ironic" on the radio the other day. The chorus goes something like this:

It's like rain on your wedding day.
It's a free ride when you already paid.
It's the good advice that you just didn't take.
Who would have thought? It figures.....

I wouldn't exactly say Alanis is a literary genius. If we were talking about a literary genius who wrote about irony, I'd refer you to Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet or Macbeth.
But in honor of St. Patrick's Day and everything "lucky", I thought I'd point out how ironic it is that a song about irony is really just a song about dumb, stupid luck. A fluke. A coup.
A big bummer if you will......

It rained on our wedding day. Everyone at the reception told me that it was good luck to have rain on your wedding day. Of course, it could have just been an attempt to make the bride feel better. I wouldn't say it was ironic but rather dumb stupid luck that one of the 5 days a year that it rains here, it happened to rain that day. We did get married on April 1st which might actually be a better explanation.

If I was dumb enough to pay for a ride that could have been free, well then that would be my own stupid fault for not checking to see if I could get it for free in the first place.

I've been known to not take good advice as well. I wouldn't say it was ironic. Prideful or pretentious maybe. But not ironic.

Ironic might be something like what I experienced last night. It was the first night that all three kids were in bed and asleep by 9pm. Thinking I could get a good extra hour or two of sleep, I went straight to bed myself. Of course, I tossed and turned until 4:30am. That's what I would call "tragic irony".
And ironically enough, it was during that time that I thought of the topic for this blog.
Who would have thought? It figures.......

Saturday, March 11, 2006


That's how many days it's been since we've seen rain in these parts.

Coincidentally, it's also how long it's been since I forgot that the car needs new windshield wiper blades. Which I'm sure will be forgotten again until the next rain storm. It's how long it's been since I forgot that I don't even own a raincoat and should probably get one for these occassions. It's also how long it's been since the car was washed last. It's nice how a couple of hours in the rain can take the bird doo doo right off!

It took 140 days and 6 hours before we figured out that we have a leak in our patio roof of our new home that we moved into in October. Which during these last 6 hours has now soaked through the wall in our bay window in the kitchen. It took 10 minutes to look up to see if the new home insurance covers roof leaks.

It doesn't.

And since this is the first rainstorm since moving to our new house, it is also the first time we learned that one of the two only roads out of the neighborhood gets blocked off because of flooding. I suspected it would be the case since I know there are 2 large dips in that old road and there is a yellow warning sign that says "Do Not Enter When Flooded". Of course, my kids think the sign says "Roller Coaster Ahead." The one remaining road is pretty much only for those with a 4 wheel drive and a wing and a prayer. Let's just say that if I was Catholic, I'd probably be inclined to say a few "Hail Mary's" before attempting to drive throught it.

So what does that tell us? Well, I guess we either need to get us something with a 4 wheel drive or else get a canoe.

Either that or we better get cracking on that food storage.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Jokes on you!

Why did the chicken cross the road?

Because that's why he got 2 sunburns cause he bonked into a tree!

Yeah. I don't get it either.

But if you were to ask my three year old to tell you a joke, odds are, that's the one you'll get. And he'll laugh and laugh as though it was the greatest joke ever! Forgetting that it was the 100 millionth time he's told it.

There's a lot of things that he does that I don't really get either. Like why a brand new box of Pull ups from Costco was emptied all over his bedroom floor. And a small wooden shoe was sitting outside the door. And when you ask him to explain it, he'll tell you matter-of-factly "because you have to walk on the britches so that the lasers don't get you. And the shoe is a magic shoe that protects you." Oh. I get it. Lasers. Magic shoes.

Or when
he takes the treds off of his Tonka truck, wraps them around his head and puts his favorite snake "No feet" on top.

Or when he decides it will be so much more fun to take a bath in the sink instead of the tub.

Or he just has to be like his big sister.

Or that he and his sister liked to put our Qwik Trip soda containers in their clothes and pretend they were "backpacks".

Or why one day, he decided he wanted to be "Goggleman"

With all of the pictures I have as evidence, I wonder if he realizes that 10 years from now, the joke will be on him?