Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Hanging with the Cousins

It was great to see my brother and his wife and their two kids last month! Since we only get a chance to see each other every few years, it's fun to see their kids getting bigger and bigger with each visit!

Monday, July 28, 2008

If you detest ironing as much as I do.....

Might I suggest you avoid this little number available at Costco.

For an added bonus, you also get a "low rider" cut which allows you to walk around feeling like your pants are about to fall off at any given second leaving you wondering why you paid money for this troublesome privilege.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I got to speak in front of a million people today......

It may have been Kirk's birthday today but selfishly, I was the one who got a pretty cool present.

See, some people have fantasies of meeting their sports hero or famous movie star. Me.....I have a fantasy of one day meeting Jim Cramer from Mad Money. I know, I know. He's old enough to be my dad and he's kinda nerdy in a 60 year old version of Alex P. Keaton kind of way. But he's kind of my secret crush. If Kirk can have a "thing" for Samantha Brown on the travel channel, I can have mine.

Here's how it went down:
I called in to Mad Money earlier in the week and left a message about asking Jim Cramer what he thought about Anadarko Petroleum. This morning, I had a message on my machine from a guy from the show asking me to be a part of the Lightning round segment and to call back at 1:15pm. I was giddy. I started to write down what it was I was going to say. I wrote how I wanted to start by saying, "Jim Cramer? THE Jim Cramer? I've got a living in Mesa, Az but wishing I was still back in Bucks County BOOYAH for ya!" Then I would go on to tell him how I had a dream of meeting him some day and shaking his hand. Then I was going to wish Kirk a happy birthday ( see....I wasn't being completely selfish ). Then I was going to ask about a company called XTO but I was told by the 16 year old intern screener that he had already covered XTO a lot that week and if I had another stock I wanted to ask him about. So, I decided I'd go back to my original question about Anadarko Petroleum. Poor kid. He obviously didn't know his stuff because he asked me what the symbol for Anadarko was. Sigh. I secretly wanted his job too.

At 1:15, I called. While on hold, I rehearsed my lines over and over and over. Should I inflect "Booyah" like a casual "booyah" or with emphasis like "booYAH"? Or maybe "BOOyah"? My stomach was in knots and I felt like a little girl with a school girl crush. I sat on hold for 1 1/2 hours. Yes. You read that right. Luckily it was Ian's nap time and shockingly the older kids weren't too hungry at dinner from all of the granola bars I kept throwing at them to keep them quiet. I hid in Lauren's room so if my turn came, kids wouldn't be heard screaming in the back ground.

About an hour into my hold time, a girl came on and told me that they ran out of time during the Lightning round but to hang on so that I could be in the "Sudden Death" segment at the very end. The nerves started to fade as did my script I had been rehearsing for the last hour. I starting thinking about how rude it was of those people who took up MY time during the Lightning round which prevented me from having a turn to live out my dream. So not fair.

Then a lady comes back on and said the Sudden Death segment was about to start and that I was the first to go! I was told that I wasn't allowed to "chit chat" or say "booyah" I just had to give my stock. My nerves picked up again. I couldn't believe I was about to talk to Jim Cramer. My hero! My idol! My guru!

Suddenly, I heard a loud noise of nothing that made any sense. In the background I heard a very faint but familiar voice. It was Jim saying, "Let's go to Lisa in Arizona! Lisa............."

Holy cow! That's ME!!!!!!

I suddenly felt like the kid from "A Christmas Story". You know, when it was finally his turn to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas but all he could say was "".

My "football" line was "Hey Cramer! What's your take on Anadarko Petroleum symbol APC?"

Then I heard, "Anadarko?" which might was well have been "Ho.... Ho..... Ho..........." and a big, black, shiny boot in the face.

Then the line went dead. I have no idea what he said after that until the show aired.

Some day.......I WILL meet Jim Cramer. For now, you can see how famous I really ( think I ) am.

Happy Birthday Kirk!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I Hope they Call me on a Mission..............

Family Home Evening Monday night was all about missionary work. We quizzed the kids about full time missions. How old are boys when they can serve a full time mission? How old are girls? How long is a mission? What are boy missionaries called? You get the idea. The kids pretty much knew the answers for the most part.

The best was when we asked them where they wanted to go on their missions. Lauren, of course, wanted someplace exotic like Paris. Erik thought it would be cool to go to Wendy's on his mission. I didn't have the heart to tell him that wasn't a "mission" but a "j.o.b" besides, Frosties day in and day out would probably get kinda old. Jack wanted to go to Disneyland on his mission. Who wouldn't?

I thought we made some good progress.............

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Jack Jack is 6!

We surprised Jack with a trip to Disneyland! He and dad got to go and play for a few days. He had a ball! Kirk said he was the ultimate chick magnet. One time in line, Kirk joked and said, "Are we THERE yet?" And Jack replied, "Dad.....we'll GET there when we GET there!" ( from the Incredibles ). Some 20 something chick turned around and said, "'ve.ever.heard!" Yeah. He was dad's wing man.

Then we had a little party for him today. He said he wanted a Bumble Bee Transformer cake. UGH! Could it BE any more complex? So, this was the best I could come up with:

It was fun and I'm glad he and Kirk got to spend some time together. And even though he was spoiled with a trip to Disneyland, he still was anxious to pick out a little souvenier for his big sister and little brothers! And I'm proud of Lauren for keeping his trip to Disneyland a secret. She was a trooper.........

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Summer of stitches and splints

I mentioned before that Jack had to get stitches. I mean, what is summer without stitches or casts? It's as normal as flip flops and a lemonade stand.

I just would prefer it happened to other people and not to me.

This is what I get to wear for the next six weeks:


Who knew putting laundry away was so dangerous?

See, this is what happens when you put off going to the Doctor for three months after the initial injury ignorantly thinking that if I just keep it wrapped and take some Advil that it will eventually all go away. I guess tendon tears don't necessarily "go away" as easily as I thought it would.

The picture on the right is my "normal" ankle. The one the left is my injured one. Most of the injury is right above the ankle and it's probably hard to tell but it's a little swollen. ( Plus it looks like the camera added about ten pounds. )
So yesterday, I finally made it in to see a specialist. After ten seconds, the Doctor suspected one of those "itis" words. You know.....arthritis, bronchitis, meningitis, and the common symptom found in children called I'm-not-eating-that-itis. Luckily it was just "tendonitis".

After the x-ray didn't show any breaks, I then went in for an ultrasound. Now, I'm no expert at ultrasounds obviously since I couldn't tell my in utero baby's toes from their nose but it probably doesn't take a genius to know that a big black spot where your tendons are might not be such a good thing.

I remarked to the ultra-sound tech, "Uh....that doesn't look normal."

He asked why I thought so.

I said, "Well, it doesn't look like a baby that's for sure!"

He began to measure the tear and told the Doctor what he found. A bunch of medical mumbo jumbo ensued and I remember thinking I should take mental notes because I knew my dad was going to ask me what they said. But they lost me at posteromedial. Then I heard, "So, it's not as bad as it COULD be then."


I made sure to remind the Doctor that I had four kids under seven at home so my treatment needs to be realistic. He said that ideally, he should put me in a cast.

Cast = not an option

Plan B?

Plan B is a brace along with anti-inflamitories and ice. Again, ideally, I should put ice on it four times a day. Realistically, he said he would be happy with twice a day for twenty minutes. I can do that. It will give me an excuse to read.

I've worn it for the last day and so far I have a different pain than I've had for the last three months. I'm hoping that means it's fixing the problem. I want to get back to wearing my flip flops again before it starts to cool down to the 90's.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

Who knew we could be as spontaneous as we were in our single days?

July 3rd as we sat and watched the ten o'clock news, my husband asked what we should do for the 4th. I muttered something about how I was not about to sit and endure six hours of country music that is only used to mask the hot, black pavement and 110 degrees with four kids just to watch a 20 minute fireworks show. Kirk then said something about, "Oh, but our kids need good memories of the 4th and fireworks!" Yeah. And I need a good tummy tuck. What's your point?

Then the weather segment came on and they started showing the weather for places up north and I asked, "What about Payson?"

We gave each other that, "Hmmmmm. Yeah." nod and decided that was what we would do.

The next morning, we put together a bunch of stuff to take with us. We dressed the kids in their co ordinating flag t-shirts blissfully unaware that every other person within a ten mile radius from a Walmart would buy the very same ones for this occasion as well. We packed coolers full of water bottles and snacks then slipped
on their flip flops and away we went.........

on a little over an hour drive................

to be greeted by rain. Lots and lots of rain.

That big, dark cloud I saw as we came up over the top of the mountain might have been my first clue that I probably should have paid more attention to that weather forecast I saw the night before.

And then I remembered some of my "spontaneous" trips I took as a young, single adult. New Year's eve Snow camping, Lake Powell in tents in July, driving to Park City just to see the B-52's in concert........ This had the potential of turning out badly.

The sleeping bags we had spread out to stake claim on our spot were drenched by 4:00. We hung out in the Tahoe and put on a DVD of Aladdin for the kids. Except about 45 minutes into the video, I noticed the automatic windows weren't rolling down so well. Probably should have kept the engine running while playing the DVD player. Luckily, the nice people in the car next to us gave us a jump with their own jumper cables seeing that we took ours out while packing the car for our spontaneous trip.
The rain kept coming down so around 6pm, we decided to just go for it. We managed to find a lone umbrella that Kirk just happened to have in his back pack. We also were fortunate that Lauren left her swimming towel in the car from her pool day last week. That came in handy as it made sitting on the waterlogged blanket feel only moderately saturated instead of thoroughly soused.

The kids had a blast playing with their light thing-a-ma-jigs.

The ducks also kept them busy.

Ian liked to go around and wave at all of the dogs. ( Seriously. Who brings dogs to see fireworks? )

Then Kirk entertained us by showing how fast my camera can take pictures.

Honestly. No dignity whatsoever.

Then Lauren wanted to see if I could take a picture of her jumping.

This was Ian as soon as the fireworks began. He spent most of the time with his hand over his mouth until he finally fell asleep from the stress of it all. You might not be able to tell, but we ended up sticking him inside a pillowcase since we did think to bring pillows. Extra blankets? Warm clothes? Common sense? No.
The pillowcases were the only dry things we had left.

I'm sure next year we'll be better prepared. Spontaneity is totally overrated.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Blog Hits

I've learned that there is a trick to getting your blog to show up as one of the first links when people do a Google search.
You have to put special "key words" in your blogs. Words like "Flip Flop" which will come up as a result for either the shoe kind or about Presidential candidates. Then there are the common phrases like, "The 12 days of Christmas", "How I survived my summer vacation", "terrible twos" and "Big boy room" which seem to be pretty popular searches.

The searches I'm a little concerned with though are "Redneck pooltable" and "the meaning of brokeback". I people really have a need to look up a redneck pooltable?

So, I've made a list of the coolest places that I've had blogs hits.

1. Lahore, Pakistan
2. Managua, Nicaragua
3. Auckland, NZ
4. Tel Aviv, Israel
5. Derby, England
6. Jerusalem, Israel
7. Hadera, Israel
8. Brisbane, Queensland Australia
9. Tegucigalpa, Honduras
10. Escades-Engordany, Andorra
11. Delhi, India

Now that I think about it, maybe I shouldn't admit I've had hits from Derby, England. It might get me on a CIA watch list or something.