Thursday, October 11, 2012

Halloween + Pretzels + Butterfingers = Disappointment

I think that these pictures speak for themselves.
8 dollars for 24 bags with
3 pretzels a piece.
I am NOT kidding!
Well I take that back.
My first bag had 2 and a HALF pretzels.
They DON"T taste like Butterfingers
When they said Mini on the box they WEREN'T kidding.
(Well that is my "big" nickel...BUT STILL!!)
Halloween failure!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

5 friends Part 1

My daughter Megan and I were talking today
(we are able to do that a lot while we spend our days feeding, rocking and staring at the little princess.)
And we agreed upon two things.
1. That we were both married to some of God's finest men on earth.
2. Sometimes you just gotta talk to a woman no matter how great said men are.
Females need other females.
I know and have known some wonderful females in my half a century on earth.
Today I started thinking about the ones who made an imprint on my life.
If only for a brief time.

I could think of with 5.
Each from a different time and place in my life.
All of them now not a active participant in my world but a treasured memory. Only one of the 5 do I even still keep in contact with and know where they are.
But each one was played a part in my life.

Lana was my first friend.
She was three almost four and I had just turned 5. Her mother thought it would be a good idea for me to come and play with her since she was an only child, adopted by two people who were over the moon with the opportunity to be parents. I was disgusted with the idea of playing with a "baby" who was still three and I remember being very ticked at my mother for agreeing to the arrangement. It was a done deal though and so I trudged down the hill and around the corner to Lana's house in the cul de sac. I entered a world which I never knew existed. Lana being the only child had EVERYTHING! I mean it....everything. She had every doll, toy and game that I knew of. For Easter she would get two or three baskets of candy, milk chocolate, white chocolate (I didn't even know that existed) and bunnies the size of  an infant. I remember one basket was even made of chocolate. Don't even start with how Christmas was celebrated. She had (brace yourself) a TV in her room. For those old enough to remember the 60's....a family was lucky to have one TV in the den! And for lunch her mother made her whatever she wanted. She served Lana (brace yourself again) Fluffer Nutter Sandwiches!!!! That's peanut butter with marshmellow creme people!! For LUNCH!!
Okay I am calm again.
Even though there was every reason to hate her with her abundance and being a baby and all....we clicked and I loved playing with her (or it might have been her stuff but hey I was 5)
I was very sad when after three years I had to move from New Jersey to West Virginia and leave Lana behind. It was my first taste of friendship sadness.
(and boy did I miss those mom was not on board with those for lunch)
Years later in 2001 I went back to the street...Fawn Ridge Drive....and stood outside the old house. I walked to the side of the yard to look where we had played tag and "Planet of the Apes"....a game we had invented after seeing the movie. I walked down the street and around the corner to Lana's house where her parents still live. They greeted us like long lost friends and welcomed us into their home. They told us all about Lana and the wonderful life she had in New York City.  I could just picture her sitting by a window of her high rise condo in a beautiful sequined gown looking over the skyline with a TV in every room and a giant chocolate bunny. It was good to sit and chat with her parents and remember old times....But dang it if there were no fluffer nutters.
Friend 2 to follow.....Linda and my teenage years. :o

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Plan B

Megan had one of those "mommy" days.
You know the ones where the baby is fussy
You feel exhausted
And there is just a dark cloud that seems to hover over you no matter what you do.
I had my fair share of those.
So I know what they look and feel and sound and smell like.
And to add the cherry on the top.
Deep down inside you know that you are so blessed and fortunate to be right where you are under that dark cloud, tired and listening to her cries and so you feel ungrateful to go along with the plethora of emotions that surge through your postpartum body.
I also felt a little listless today as well.
And so I came up with a magnificent solution.
We would work ourselves out of our funk.
We would do all we could to make the sweetie baby happy and then we would organize our world, letting her cry if need be.
Two women shoulder to shoulder...
In the trenches of domestic warfare.
Two generations of strength and resolve ready to tackle our emotions head on.
Our mother daughter shoulders to the wheel.
Megan went about cleaning the kitchen while I labored to put everything in it's place, moving from room to room like a man on a mission.
The baby was not thrilled with our new found determination but we remained strong to her protests.
We moved her from the floor to the swing to the jumper to her stomach to her back to the floor and well you get the picture.
After a hour or so I caved in a little
My grandma resolve not as resolute as I had planned.
She thrust out her arms and formed a human T, arching her back so that I could pick her up easier.
I looked over at Megan folding a massive mountain of laundry with tears in her eyes.
Plan B
I scooted Megan out the door with an errand to buy baskets at the dollars store with a coupon to chickfila in her hand for a free sandwich.
I assured her that it was an important task and that I would hold down the fort...chief baby and all.
And then I layed on the carpet beside Kate and spent the next hour just enjoying every moment with her.
Kissing her soft brown hair and listening to her squawking attempts at conversation.
I silently prayed and thanked God for the opportunity to enjoy a new life to it's fullest.
Not like I did with my own.
Tired and worried with the weight of the world on my shoulders.
But from a new vantage point.
From a grandmas perspective.

 And I knew what I wanted to tell Megan when she got home.
I wanted her to know that she is doing an amazing job with my sweet grandchild.
That she has met and exceeded all of my expectations of her.
That she is mother that I am proud to call my daughter.
And Kate is lucky to have been born to her.
And although the hormone fairy delivers a bad day once in awhile.
She is doing the most important job in the world.
And she is doing it amazingly.

Monday, September 24, 2012


A sweet friend on facebook asked me to post pictures of my Halloween decoration.
She really knows the way to my heart.
I am not quite finished with them.
There are a few cobwebs to place and a few rats to place in strategic places, so while you are waiting....
Well maybe SOMEONE is waiting...
Here are some pictures from last year.
On the downside.....
It was the first time that I had been away from home for the holidays.
On the upside it was the first Halloween that I was with ALL of my kids since 2005!!
What a wonderful treat that was.
Megan pregnant with her first little ghoul...I mean girl.
Jack my pumpkin carving enthusiast who loves it just as much as I do.
And Lauren my talented makeup artist. What that girl can do with eyeliner!!
What I was unaware of though was Utah residents love of Halloween decorations!
My goodness they were festive.
In Megan and Daves neighborhood alone there were 20 or so houses that were spookily bootiful!
But there was ONE HOUSE....
I mean pirate palace.....
These mateys are the REAL DEAL....I tell you.....even I...the self proclaimed Queen of Halloween was speechless....

It was even more spectacular at night.
They had skull and crossbones projected on the garage door and windows that looked like pirate flags blowing in the wind.
They piped in jaunty sea shanties like the soundtrack from Pirates of the Caribbean and one song in particular which still plays a loop in my brain from time to time.
"What do you do with a drunken sailor....what do you do with a drunken sailor....what do you do with a drunken sailor early in the morning...
Shave his belly with a rusty razor...shave his belly with a rusty razor....."
Well you get the point.
The only thing I could do to answer back to their challenge was have my professional makeup artist make me as scary as possible.
(not as hard a task as one might think)

 The trick or treaters were ADORABLE!
My favorite of the night?
They got extra fact they got my FAVORITE candy
All of the kids were given a choice of that or snickers...
Fun dip won EVERYTIME!
My lovely niece Lisa picked Fun Dip too ;)
There were a couple of trick or treaters in the house as well...
 Johnny Appleseed
And a pirate family with their baby parrot. Argggg.
And of course no Halloween would be complete without the annual Winn pumpkin carving contest.
(where EVERYONE winns)

All in all it was an amazing Halloween.
And the best part....
being with my kids.
I think I love them even MORE than I love Halloween!
(but not by too much )

Friday, September 14, 2012

Jinx Jinx and Double Jinx

You would think I would have learned my lesson by now....
I must
promise to do a two part post.
It is the biggest jinx when I do.
I set it all up to show you the wonderful haul that I made at the Park City Thrift Store
with my hundred dollars
Every day I would promise myself that I would take pictures and post them.
After all why should I be the only one to gaze each day upon my amazing finds.
I knew that everyone was waiting....
(humor me here....will you)
I finally found the time to take the pictures....
(ok so time really isn't my is more finding the will)
and I realized that I had lost the piece de resistance from my collection.
It was the only item with an original price tag
(which read 89 dollars and I got it for 12!!)
And it was BIG!
Which should not be an indication of the state of my house or my organizational abilities....
as they say in Hollywood....
The blog must go on!
SO here is the whole kitten kaboodle.....
minus the BIG thing which I WILL FIND!!
 These really MOOved me....I mean who DOESN'T want ceramic cow measuring cups?

 I love silver in any form and this little cup had my name written all over it....ER....well it actually had someone else's initials all over it but that makes it seem even more fun. I have already created the fictional character Mary Greenwood Pennyworth who had it custom made to drink her sparkling water out of.

 If there is a new way to display pictures...COUNT ME IN! I loved this stand and clips and plan on using it over and over with different pictures each month.

 This one was perhaps my favorite find. I already had the huge black acorn on my shelf. When I saw this silver squirrel I fell in LOVE! Then when I realized you could put a nut in his mouth..push down his tail and voila! cracked nuts!!! Well there was NO way he wasn't going home with me.

 My favorite Uncle Jack had this amazing house in Kaysville where I used to spend time at every summer. I thought that everything he did or owned was the bomb diggity. He had one of these games in his upstairs play room. Although it always frustrated me more than entertained me, it was a sign that it had to make the journey home.

UM......I am a GRANDMA now!!!! I think this purchase is completely self explanatory!!!
(Isn't this just to die for!!! When I brought it home Megan and Dave said, "Yippee It's like visiting the doctors office without all the bad stuff!)
There are three more things that I purchased....
Two cooking items
THE BIG thing
It is getting late and I am tired
so I will post it tomorrow.
jinxed again.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Thrift Store Shelley

My grandma Helen was a wonderful woman.
She loved to tell detailed stories.....I mean DETAILED.
If she was showing you a pair of booties she had just knitted for the hospital charity bazaar..
(and she really was an amazing knitter, her stitches so meticulous that they looked machine made)
It would go something like this:
Come over and sit by me a minute and let me show you booties I am working on for the St Lukes know they have an annual fundraiser to raise money....well I went to the store to get some yarn on tuesday.....wait maybe it was it was tuesday because I stopped at the King Soopers that day for eggs after my bowling league....wait I think that I got eggs AND milk that day.....well anywho....this yarn color is a yellow that is very hard to find and so I looked at the yarn store and they couldn't match it, well you know that yarns are done in dye lots and they just aren't the same color all the time...but anywho....I decided to go to "Thrift Store Mary's" on Thursday around 10 in the morning.....well no it wasn't 10 because your grandpa played golf that morning and he got back around 11 and so it must have been more like noon but I wanted  to see if she had the color I needed.........
wait......where are you going?
I haven't shown you the booties.

The reason I have been traveling down the Helen memory lane lately is that I went to a fabulous thrift store in Park City Utah last wait it was Tuesday it was Monday because I went to Provo on Tuesday...
well anywho....
Grandma Helen LOVED thrift stores...
And she loved to talk about her friend "Thrift Store Mary"
Yes she actually called her that every time she talked about her.
How often was that you say?
A lot!
I am serious.
I always wondered if Mary whatever her last name was knew she was known in our family as "Thrift Store Mary"?
I wonder if she realizes I can't step into a Thrift store without thinking of this faceless, last nameless person who dominated my Grandma Helen's stories.
Well anywho.....
I spent a LOT of money at the Thrift store!
But whoooo doggies I got a lot of bang for my buck!
And so in honor of "Thrift Store Mary" and my wonderful grandma Helen I am going to be posting what I got for a 100 dollars in the Park City Thrift Store.
I know that "Thrift Store Mary" would be estatic
and Grandma Helen would be proud.

I start with the lovely piece of luggage I am clutching in my arms at the Salt Lake City Airport.
My expression is blue steel for those who know what I mean
I got more stares and questions about that piece of luggage than you would believe.
And not just because of my rocking model poses either....
It seems that retro is the new pink.
I bought it for my photography business and fallen in love with it as a traveling companion.
Double score!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Meet the Sibs

I know I have talked about my brothers and sisters before but I don't think that you have been formally introduced....
We were all together last weekend for the wedding of my sweet niece Lisa and so a picture was taken. And because I think that for the first time in a long time we (my sister and I) are on a weight loss streak I feel like this is a picture that I can finally be happy with.
I mean....I actually like this picture.
And that hasn't happened since David was a wee tot....
So speaking of the baby I will start with the introductions from right to left.
The handsome man on the right is the youngest member of our family. With his movie star good looks he has actually been mistaken for Matthew Perry when seen in Hollywood.
If you have read my previous posts you will remember that I was not altogether thrilled with David usurping my "baby" throne in the family. We were loving enemies for a great deal of our childhood. With typical insults and threats we lived each day on a precarious tight rope of love. I thought his obnoxious habit of kissing everyone multiple times was gross and thus dubbed him the kissing bandit. I also often referred to him as my pesky little brother. He would torment me by sneaking around spying on me with dates and reporting back to the parents. He would warn me when I was angry with him that he would have 5 boys ALL like him and he would send them to stay and torment me every summer.
Sometime between the stage of pesky little brother and today developed a man that I am proud to call my brother. David is the person that I would choose to be on the Amazing Race with me. (for those who don't know about my worship of that show will not understand the compliment I just gave him) We would totally win.  He can do more in one hour than most men get done in a day. He is street smart with the ability to charm the pants off of any stranger. He is OCD with details and organization and a master of "git er done."
And he would do ANYTHING for his family. His love of family and desire to be around them is unparalleled. He prefers quality time AND quantity time. And when I have been in need he has answered every call. Always willing to help. He is the sibling that laughs the hardest at my jokes and shares my same slightly askew sense of humor.
Next in line is John....
But I have only ever called him Johnny. It might not fit for a man who is the president of The Children's Miracle Network.....or a man who rubbed elbows and was a speaker with Bill Clinton and George Bush and didn't even ask for a picture with them....a man who regularly competes and wins in grueling bike races like Lotoja or completes Iron Man triathlons.....
But he will always be Johnny to me.
The sometimes mysterious older brother who set the bar for all of us siblings a might high.
I will forever remember him as the brother who when getting a trail motorcycle Honda 90, who was not too embarrassed to take his little sister on rides around the hills of West Virginia.
or the brother who created a fictional character, E-E the monkey, who would talk to use through the amazing magic of the reel to reel tape recorder, sounding like a monkey from outer space.
His nickname is "the alien" because he keeps a lot of feelings to himself and acts like he doesn't remember all the past memories when we talk about them. We joke that our brother we grew up with was swooped up into an alien craft and replaced....but I really don't think that.
That's why I still call him Johnny.....
Even though to the rest of the world he is John.
And last but not least on the left is my favorite sister.
It's nice to only have one sometimes.....the competition is easier. That being said, "Precious" as I call her would be anyone's favorite sister. She is the heart beat of our family. She is the one to sit next to at the table during cut throat family card games because she will help you to win. She is one of the most generous people I know. She never forgets a special occasion and I always look forward to the thoughtful sweet gifts and cards from her written in her meticulous flowing print. As young girls we shared everything....sometimes willingly and sometimes begrudgingly...and Heidi was always pretty patient with her feisty younger sister.  I always tell people to imagine me and then think of the opposite and that's my sister Heidi. I hope she knows what a compliment that is. How much I think she possesses the qualities that I desire in myself....patience, love, service to others, generosity and the ability to take life as it comes with courage and determination.
My favorite Heidi saying that I use all the time with reverence...
"It is what it is."
And with that I say I am blessed to walk this earth with such wonderful siblings, playmates, frenemies, best friends, and family
It definitely is what it is.
And I love it.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Hair-do's and don'ts

Katelyn's favorite time of the day
(and now of course mine as well)
I have even created a song for the occasion which never ceases to earn me my most coveted prize
A smile
from the Royal Highness herself.
So in an effort to add a new dimension to bath time
We played beauty shop last night.
I had given a lesson in Relief Society  about keeping the Sabbath Day holy and decided that I needed to fill my day with worthy activities....
And so this was one of my top choices.
I present to you....
The Princess K
and her many hairdo's
and a few hairdon'ts

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Wanna take a trip?

Hey Blog friends!!
Want to take a trip with me?
It is an all expense paid, luxury filled, ride on the MOTHER TRAIN!!
Known to all as....
You see there have been some changes around here.
There is a new sheriff in town.

And her name is Katelyn.

She moved down to Texas and I am at her beck and call.
So much so....... I haven't been able to blog as often as I would have liked and there is someone in the house who has been making me feel guilty about it....
"You haven't even posted about your new grand baby....."
"Why don't you blog today...."
"How come you never blog anymore..."
"I wrote 100 blog entries today and you haven't written any..."
AND SO......
with no further adieu......


happy now????? 


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Knock Knock....

Only a few more days until I fly to Utah to see my sons and my daughter
And to meet someone new.
Although I have a feeling that we have met before.
This person will usher me into yet another new phase of my life.
It's one of those doors of your life that once you enter you cannot exit.
(Yes, much like the Hotel California)
Those who have read my blog should know by now that it is never easy for me.
I over-think things.
At least I use to.
Now I hope that my advancing age has least brought the wisdom that everyday is different and cannot be predicted.
And yet people ask me anyway,
"Are you excited to be a grandma?"
I answer yes because I know that is what I am suppose to say.
And there is a part of me that is.
The little clothes and layette purchased and packed,
The recent urge to crochet producing copious amounts of hats,
New photography gadgets to capture every second of her life ;)
And yet....
There is another baby that occupies my thoughts.
This one.
That's my beautiful mom holding my first born.
My Megan.
And that is where my heart is right now.
I think about the fact that she is embarking on the most exciting, joyful, difficult journey of her mortal life.
At least it was and is for me.
It changes everything.
It is profoundly rewarding.
It is more difficult than I had ever imagined.
To do it right that is.
To love someone more than yourself......
whether you want to or not.
To experience joy and pain,
Happiness and sadness,
Pride and disappointment..
All on a brand new level

I am so proud of her and all that she has accomplished in her life.
And I know that she will make an amazing mother.
But the mother in me....
Can't help but want to take care of HER.
To make sure that everything is easy for HER.
I know that is impossible but..
Hey I am a mom.
It's what we do.
It's what she will do.
And I am pretty sure that once Katelyn makes her grand entrance.
I will learn another whole level of love.
Why yes I guess I AM excited for that.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Who lives in Pleasant Grove?

Well it happened...
And it slipped right past me.
You see I've been busy.
See that beautiful picture up there.
That's one of the reasons why..
But still no excuse for missing it.
My 10,000 visitor.
There were no loud explosions,
No confetti,
No music or banging drums.
So I looked at my site meter to see that it was a friend from
Pleasant Grove.
How fitting that it should be someone from a location with the word pleasant in it.
Because that's what I feel when I think of the kind people who read my blog
who comment
who follow
and who are so kind to tell me that they enjoy what I write.
Thank you Ms or Mr. Pleasant Grove.
Let me know who you are and I will send you a treat.
You are number
Here is to the next 10,000

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Anyone know an adult who collects giraffes?

That's what that these are called.
I know I know
They look like stuffed animals....weird one's... agreed....but crocheted stuffed animals nonetheless.
But if they are called amigurumi in today's world then who am to argue.
I am becoming a grandma after all. soon.
And I want to be the best one I can be.
When my children were young, I was fascinated by toys and toy aisle in Target and WalMart. My mother would tire quickly when I would say I was going to make a quick sweep through the toy section. She knew that quick was half an hour at best.
I loved toys.
It was in fact one of the things that I missed about being a young mother.
Being able to buy toys
feeling the movement of a baby inside me.
Well I think I get to have one of those two things back.
And to link that new urge with my sudden urge to crochet.....
Well just stamp a big "G" on my forehead and pull up the rocking chair.
So when I signed up for daily crocheting patterns and they kept using the word
Well I had to know what that meant.
After all I am a mother who not only knew every pokemon name but helped collect those all important cards.
I looked it up in the dictionary and there was no definition there.
I started a google search on the crocheting sites and came up with this explanation.
  Amigurumi is the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting small stuffed animals and anthropomorphic creatures. The word is derived from a combination of the Japanese words ami, meaning crocheted or knitted, and nuigurumi, meaning stuffed doll. 
Ok so I am not japanese....stuffed doll. Got it.
I decided to investigate further.
The descriptions that followed of why I should make the stuffed dolls amused me.
For instance....
 Lorelei the Ladybug- Use free amigurumi crochet patterns to make this ladybug. It's an easy crochet pattern that you can give to your friends. Add him to your great collection of amigurumi friends. Again, makes a great friend for a child.
Truly who DOESN"T want a great friend for your child. I had never thought when my children complained to me that they had NO friends that I could have just crocheted one up for them.
The Love Bug- These love bugs are adorable for all ages. They make for great gifts on Valentine's day or any day of the year. Your kids can play with the love bugs and have tea parties with them. 
Now this one is problematic since Mormons don't drink tea but who knew that Love Bugs did?
Georgia the Giraffe- Crochet a cute giraffe like this one for the next baby shower you go to. The colors are nice and bright for baby to look at. It's an easy crochet pattern that works best with worsted weight yarn and an H hook. This makes for a great gift for an adult who collects giraffes.
I will now be on the look out for any adult who has a giraffe collection. If you know of any I will be sure to whip one up.
And finally my personal favorite.....
Amigurumi Style Pug- This type of dog is controversial, some people love it, some people not so much. I personally think they're really cute, but if you don't want the hassle of cleaning up after it or taking it for walks then use this free amigurumi crochet pattern to create your own crocheted pug.
Although I did NOT know that the Pug was a controversial breed, I do think that a crocheted dog makes perfect sense.
No hassles
No cleaning
No walking
I am fairly sure that amigurumi's don't eat.
But I will have to get back to you on that one.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Texas Fried Pride

How do you know that you are in a high class eating establishment?
How are you assured that your Texas eating experience will be top notch?
How can you guarantee that your fried foods will be moist and filled with oily goodness?
Make sure you pick the joint that has napkins that flow freely...
Like toilet paper on a roll.
All 8 of them lined up in a row.
Oh and if the locals that are packed in there look at you a little funny.
It's okay....
Just smile a little wider and say,
Yes they are ALL my real teeth.