Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Morning Video

I know there are ways to share video without posting it on my blog, but I really don't know what they are, and I really don't feel like learning at the moment. So, to share some video with Grandpa Fast for Christmas, ya'all get to see Callie and her Christmas stocking.

Christmas Eve

Callie was reading this book for quite a while on Christmas Eve, and I decided to get out the movie camera because it was so cute, but when the camera came out she was WAY more interested in me holding her than in reading.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Christmas Eve To Remember

Every year my sisters and I cut it pretty close to the wire when it comes to shipping gifts. Usually we opt for priority mail and pray they get there in the three days, even though it isn't guaranteed.

A few years ago, the weather was particularly bad, and we waited (as usual) to ship until December 22. The person at the post office reminded us the package would likely not arrive until after Christmas, but it was out of our budget to ship it overnight (which at the time couldn't be guaranteed either because of the bad weather back east). We sent the package on its way and decided to tell Dad on Christmas that the package would arrive that week. It wasn't the best situation, but it would have to do.

Christmas Eve was on a Sunday that year. The small town post office where my Dad's PO box was was closed until the day after Christmas. But a wonderful employee was in sorting mail on that Sunday morning and he saw my Dad's package. He saw it was addressed to "Dad" and felt like he would want it for Christmas. So he looked up the phone number for his mail box and called him to say he had a package and he could pick it up that day.

I know it might not seem like a big thing to some, but getting that call meant a lot to my dad. He doesn't live close to any of his family, and the Christmas package was his connection to us. The postal employee had no obligation to do what he did, and actually, he probably wasn't supposed to do it. But it made a huge difference to our family. When I heard the story I cried because I couldn't believe the package had made it all the way from Modesto, CA to a small town in Eastern Tennessee in two days despite the freezing weather and blizzards that were sweeping the nation and grounding flights everywhere. I cried because this man had zero obligation to do what he did, and he did it anyway, just because he had Christmas spirit. I cried because I was lame and didn't make sure his package went out before December 22 and if it wasn't for this wonderful man, my Dad wouldn't have had our gifts on Christmas.

I know not all packages get delivered on time (hopefully, they will get there on time again this year, fingers crossed), but that year, one man made a difference for our family and I will be grateful to the good ol' USPS for many years to come.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

In Loving Memory...

The toughest writing assignment of my life. Writing someone's obituary. Keep it short and sweet, yet, meaningful and poignant.

If you look at it like a formula, the first sentence (or paragraph if you are verbose like that) is easy; as are the last two, or three. Name, where and when born and/or died. A few sentences (or paragraphs) to sum up someone's lifetime. And then a few more easy sentences, who the deceased is survived by, preceded in death by, and the service information.

Those few statements to sum up someone's life are so intimidating. What would someone write about me? A few cliche's about being a wife, mother, daughter? Some personality traits? A fun memory? What if those things are really how you feel, but you don't want to seem to be treating it lightly or commonplace?

I don't have any grand answers, I am just pondering.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Expected Unexpected

My grandmother, "Granny Goose," passed away yesterday morning.

It was unexpected...

Well, kind of. In 1985 she had a massive stroke and the doctors said she was brain dead and would not make it. That arrangements needed to be made. So my mom began making arrangements. The doctors then advised the removal of the feeding tube. My mom said no. They could cut off all other forms of aiding her, but we had to leave the feeding tube in place. Then my mom realized that when she asked Grandma questions she could blink in response.

Very slowly she made a recovery. But she never regained the ability to talk and she was paralyzed on her left side. She was still there though. She would laugh when you told jokes. She loved seeing family and made friends with EVERYONE at the nursing home where she lived for the last 23 years (incidentally, the longest she ever lived in one place).

Then shortly after my wedding she began heading downhill. There is a family history of dementia among some of her siblings. She began having gran mal (sp?) seizures about two years ago and then just over a year ago the nursing home recommended hospice care.

At that point when we would go visit she would seldom open her eyes and she could barely hold up her head. When she was awake she didn't know us, and would just stare into space or randomly start laughing and pointing at nothing.

But then she started getting better. She would be awake when we would visit. She loved seeing and hugging the babies. She would make eye contact and be engaged when we spoke to her. She was improving.

Then yesterday morning she passed. I know she is in a better place now, no longer held captive by her body, but it still surprised me.

How does something so inevitable, and long time coming, come as such a shock?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The most delicious combination

One of my favorite food combinations in this world is chocolate and peanut butter. It is no coincidence that my weight remained steady during swimming season, as it coincided with the annual senior trip candy bar fundraiser, and I could not resist the Reese's temptation.

So imagine my excitement when I was invited to try Ghiradelli's new Chocolate and Peanut Butter Squares.

In a word, delicious! I love Ghiradelli chocolate so I thought the decision to mix it with peanut butter was long overdue.
In all honesty though I thought it could use a little more peanut butter, but I don't like plain chocolate and I only use half a bag of chocolate chips when I make cookies, so for you, the regular chocolate lover, it would probably be perfect.
**Just to let you know, I am totally not selling out (yeah because someone would be willing to pay the big bucks to get their advertisements to my 12 readers), but I was given the squares for free and I really did enjoy them.

Monday, December 8, 2008


Grandma insisted Callie have a bubble bath. So last week after we put up the Christmas Tree, Grandma gave her a bubble bath. Daddy went a little crazy adding the soap, so she was a slippery little boo. She was also kind of scared of the corner where there were mountains of bubbles. Very cute!
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Sunday, December 7, 2008

A Friendly Reminder

When you decide to reorganize the bathroom, don't trade the locations of the toothpaste and the diaper cream. On Sunday morning you might not be paying attention and you might reach for the old spot.

And the A&D ointment just doesn't have the same fresh taste.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Some People Come Into Our Lives

Yesterday, I decided to email someone about a bookcase on Craigslist. It was kind of on a whim and I almost didn't do it. Turns out, the listing was from some good friends of ours. The email prompted them to invite us to dinner this weekend where we found out they are moving across the country. If I wouldn't have emailed on the listing, I might have missed the chance to get together with these friends, for what could be the last time before they move at Christmas.

These were great friends who happen to have a baby just a few months after us. We had some things in common and I always enjoyed the conversation when were together. I am quite sad to be losing them (but quite happy for the great chance their getting).

After dinner, Callie seemed okay for one more stop so we went to Borders to get some Christmas shopping done. While we were there we ran into the (only) other normal couple (there were some serious weirdos) from the childbirth class we took. Turns out we weren't the only ones who wasted the $65 in learning about the process only to have a non-optional C-section. What is it with all these breech babies?

Anyway, after we finished chatting with them we headed for home. Before we got to the car Jeff asked me what their names were. I have no clue, other than the baby is Emily. Jeff said why didn't you give them your blog address or ask their names to add them to facebook. I didn't know, other than the thought didn't occur to me until he brought it up. Then I was a little sad. If I would have at least gotten their names, or offered my number...

It was kind of strange in a way. I don't think about how I need to exchange numbers with people I run into who I went to high school with, but these people who I met for literally five, three hour classes, I can't get out of my head that I should have done more.

Maybe it is because I am losing a friend soon, but it feels like a missed chance. So, Emily's parents, if you are out there, drop me a line if you want to be friends and we can get together for pizza sometime.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Turkey Toddler

Callie stepped it up (pun intended) for Thanksgiving and we saw a huge improvement in her walking. This isn't her walking (obviously) but is a picture of her special onesie from Aunt Shelly for her first Turkey Day.
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Little Callie Wild Hair

This is what Callie's hair looks like about 90% of the time. After her bath we comb it into place and it looks nice until she eats, sleeps or nurses. Then we are back to the wild look again. It is a battle I usually just let her hair win.
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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Birthday Cake

This was Callie's centipede birthday cake for her bug themed party. The picture doesn't show it all that well, but it really was cute.

The whole thing was covered with green frosting and dyed green coconut, on top of a strawberry cake. The flavor combo totally reminded me of Zingers. Callie wanted nothing to do with the cake unless Grandma was feeding it to her from a spoon, but that was remedied by Tuesday when I gave her a mini cupcake to enjoy on her actual birthday.
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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A Year Ago Today

This picture was taken at 3:41 PM less than 30 minutes after Callie was born last year. I can't believe how quickly she went from this to this:

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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Almost One

Callie, the party girl strikes a pose!
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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Switching Roles

For about the last dozen years or so, my mom, sisters and I always go shopping on Black Friday. We pour over the ads all day Thanksgiving, get a game plan and then we attack. After my sister and I had our license it was even better because we could all hit different stores to get the deals.

My dad, who lives in TN, always said we were crazy. There wasn't a deal in the world that could take him out of bed and into the craze of Black Friday.

Then we had a baby. And my sister had a baby. And we take pictures. Lots and lots of pictures.

And we told him how he could view all of them on email if he would just get a computer. He resisted at first...

But yesterday he caved. He went shopping for a laptop so he could have email and new pictures of babies (who are, I think, officially both toddlers now). He went and waited in line for two hours so he could see pictures of this

and this

a little bit of this

and a few of these
All while my mom, sisters and I slept in and did our Black Friday shopping online, in our pajamas. Next year I am sure he will come back to the dark side and Black Friday shop again... he will just do it online.

Friday, November 28, 2008

So funny

I laughed when I saw this. You might too.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Thanksgiving Meme

This holiday I am thankful for at least these 100 things:

(also, so as to avoid any public ridicule, over analyzing, these are just in the order they popped into my head, there is no double meaning in the order, k?)

1. Jeff
2. Callie
3. Church
4. Mom
5. Sisters
6. Dad
7. In-laws
8. Nieces (no nephews)
9. Home
10. Friends
11. BYU
12. Football
13. A Shower
14. Fresh Bread
15. White turkey meat
16. Computer
17. Blogs To Read
18. Health
19. Milk
20. In A Fridge
21. For Cereal
22. A Lemon Tree
23. Washing Machines
24. Dishwashers
25. Telephones
26. Our Car
27. Coastal day trips
28. Callie's First Birthday
29. A Comfy Lazy Boy
30. To Nurse In
31. The University of Utah (for paying Jeff to go to school)
32. Salsa
33. Cost Less
34. Day After Thanksgiving Sales
35. Good Books To Read
36. The Scriptures
37. Food storage
38. Clomid (not now, we aren't there yet)
39. A Camera
40. Photos
41. Videos
42. Sleep
43. Hospitals
44. Their staffs
45. Fuddrucker's Hamburgers
46. Guacamole
47. French Fries
48. Tacos (I'm starting to sound hungry, dinner isn't for another 3 hours 45 min, darn)
49. My friends families
50. Missions
51. Rain
52. Automatic Sprinklers
53. Snow (even if I haven't seen any for nearly 3 years!)
54. Christmas music
55. The Temple
56. Marriage
57. The Prophet
58. Yummy smells
59. Flowers
60. That I was able to work with flowers for 4 years
61. That I don't work (away from home)
62. To watch Alyson
63. 5:00
64. Grandparents
65. Carpet
66. Air conditioning
67. Central Heat
68. The postal service (especially of Jasper, TN who made my Dad's day a couple years back on Christmas Eve.) (maybe I will post that story later, it is one that makes me cry with happiness when I think about it)
69. Stories that make you cry because you see how great people can be.
70. Baby naps
71. Two baby naps at the same time
72. Socks my husband will wear for 15 minutes to warm them up before he gives them to me
73. Instant Messenger
74. Windows to let in sunshine when I can't be outside
75. Homegrown tomatoes
76. Jamie for giving me the idea for this post
77. That I made it to number 77 before really having to stop to think
78. Education
79. Insurance
80. The mountains
81. The chance I had to live in the mountains, if only for a summer
82. TV
83. The feeling of satisfaction when you've done something hard
84. That I can do hard things
85. The edit post button when I realize I hit publish without proofreading
86. Hope
87. Country music
88. Beautiful piano music
89. ok, music in general
90. Babies laughter
91. Seeing babies dance
92. Cinnamon Rolls
93. Pantene Pro-V
94. The ability to walk,
95. run,
96. dance
97. That one day we will payoff our house
98. Hugs
99. Kisses
100. that you were bored kind enough to read this far

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

To See If I Can

I know I shouldn't encourage it, but it was just so cute!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Biggest Loser Recap

Jeff and I watch the Biggest Loser every week.

Last week we concluded Amy C. made a mistake keeping Vicki on the show and voting off Coleen.

Tonight was proof. If Vicki would have been gone, and it would have been Amy C. and Heba below the line, we all know Heba would have been headed for home.

And that would have made how many viewers happy ecstatic...

Seriously. Now we know for sure one of the evil 3 (Heba, Ed, Vicki) will be in the final, grrr!

I'm done with my rant and still feeling a little depressed, so please excuse me while I eat some Swiss Cake Roll goodness.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Trying To Be Blissful

Tonight I was blissfully frugal as I cooked dry beans for the first time.

I wish I could say I loved them, they were so delicious, and I can't wait to cook them again.

But I can't.

They were definitely okay.

And I will probably cook them again, maybe with better luck next time.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Sick Baby


Last week was the first time Callie was really sick. It ended up being Roseola (so the urine sample was a HUGE waste of time and $). The lovely thing about Roseola is it is only contagious before any sign of symptoms, so you can be blissfully unaware while your child shares the germs with the world (or the sweet little baby who came over for playgroup). Lovely.

The fever broke just after the dr appointment last week and on Friday she had a rash all over. The rash is fading now and she pretty much seems like she is back to normal.
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Saturday, November 22, 2008


Five turnovers.

No wonder we didn't win.

So sad.


Let's keep it short, sweet and to the point

GO BYU!!!!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Story, In All It's Glory

So doc says she wants to make sure there is no urinary tract (or track?) infection so we need to collect a urine sample just to rule it out.

She tells us this is a relatively easy process accomplished by attaching a baggie over her privates to catch the pee before it hits the diaper.

She must have missed the memo, that when baby has diarrhea, things might not go so easily.

Also note, when babies have said stomach problems, they tend to have diaper rash, thus, leading to a very upset baby when removing said bag o'fluid, which is attached with adhesive to the irritated area.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Way To Healing

The best way to heal a sick toddler?

Schedule a dr.'s appointment.

Her fever went down steadily beginning just before I called and set up the appointment. It went up again in route to the office, and since we left has been going down, down, doooooowwwwwn (imagine that gopher from Winnie The Pooh saying it with a bit of a lysp as he falls in a hole, hehe).

Since we returned home, and collected the urine sample (the fun story on that tomorrow, I know, isn't it fun to have something to look forward to?), she has started eating again and is a lot more active.

Hopefully the doc giving her the once over is all it will take to kick this bug's trash (hopefully, just like BYU will kick U trash this weekend!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


What a week! A friend had her beautiful baby girl and I have found out 3 friends are expecting!!!


PS Sorry so brief tonight, baby is still sick and wants Mama's cuddles (even though I am evil and I made her nap)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

How Can Something So Small

Today I was humbled.

Callie made me feel about this big, except maybe a bit smaller.

She really didn't want to take a nap, but I have been trying to keep her to a schedule. Jeff had mentioned that she thought she might be feeling under the weather, but I didn't think so (and I'm the mom, so I should know, right?). She was just having nap rebellion.

Fast forward seven hours from the time I first tried to unsuccessfully put her down (which was followed by 25 min of constant SCREAMING, then holding her for about 30 min with intermittent crying, an hour and a half of feeding and playing littered with each baby taking turns crying, and then another 40 min of SCREAMING, before calm blessed silence for an hour and half, then some more feeding and playing), when I changed her diaper I noticed she felt warm... like HOT. Then I took her temperature.

Definite fever.

Thus shrinking Mommy's ego/pride down to about zero.

Go Me.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Rain Rain Come Again Some Other Day

I took this picture the first day it rained this season. It's a little blurry because I'm not a very steady hand and I didn't want to use the flash because I loved the way the light was hitting her. I opened the windows so the babies could hear the soft patter of the rain drops that I love!

Anyway, I miss the rain (I also miss the snow, but that is another post). It rained for a few days about a month ago and lately we have been dry and spring like again. Today the high was nearly 80!
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Sunday, November 16, 2008

How do you achieve your goals?

Sometimes after we eat out, I look to the internet to recreate the meal at home. The other day I was looking for a recipe and I thought this ad was a little oxymoronic.

In case you can't read the pointed out text:

"Claim Jumper Cheese Potatocakes"

"Cracker Barrel Hash Brown Casserole"

"Enter Goal Weight ____ lbs."

Needless enough to say, Jillian asking my goal weight rules out making either of those recipes anytime soon.
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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Adventures in Babysitting

Once again, I prove my stellar child care skills.

Alyson decided she wasn't getting enough fiber in her diet and decided to grab a bit of carbon cellulose to round things out a bit.

The best I can figure is she picked this receipt up from my scriptures or off the end table and then proceeded to suck on it for the next 3-4 hours. Only slightly freaky that she ate lunch with it in her mouth, played a little bit, TOOK A NAP, and then nursed on one side, before her mom found it, more than an hour after leaving my house.
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Friday, November 14, 2008

We Interrupt This Blog

We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog

To tell you to go visit NOW! So you can get a free Snapfish Photo Book.

Coupon dispersal ends tonight at 11:59 PM PST and you have to redeem by Sunday night.

I don't watch Oprah daily or anything, but this show had a lot of great organizational/clutter control ideas from Peter Walsh.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fraggle Rock

A few weeks back, I caved to Jeff's pressure and finally put pigtails in Callie's hair for church.

There was a slight flaw in his plan. How still is a 10 month old going to sit while her mother tries to figure out how to get pigtails in, somewhat symetrical, and maybe not too bumpy? After we had to hog tie her to put them in, Jeff said I put them too far forward on her head and that she looked like a bug, and maybe we should take them out.

I disagree. I think she looks more like a Fraggle.

Oh, and I made her wear her hair like that to church, because she needs to learn to sit still or people will laugh at her, because I am into old school parenting like that.

PS That post I have been promising for a couple of days? It just might not happen, like ever. I can't get it to come together. After we got home from doing a small service project I was feeling all happy, and on that service high, you know the feeling... Anyway, the feeling has faded, and the idea for the post is pretty much gone too.
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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Yeah, So I Lied

The post I promised yesterday? It just isn't going to happen.

Tonight was one of those nights when conversing with your spouse is so much more important than blogging. If you want to feel included too, we were talking about this. Go on, click it, you know you want to.

Or fine don't. Just think about what you could be missing.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Losing Yourself

Tonight I got a little lost. Tomorrow I will share the details.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Wishing and Hoping

My husband and his dreams of winning a Publishers Clearinghouse giveaway are starting to rub off on me. is giving away an Epson Artisan 800 printer.

This printer has had a blogger press lately, mostly because I think people are getting paid to say how wonderful this printer is, but maybe it's true and it can perfectly capture the photo of walking on water.

So I am supposed to tell you all the reasons I would love to win this printer and how it would change my life to get an extra entry in the contest.

1. My husband is tired of having to print stuff for me at work. I am tired of making him do it.

2. This thing has a scanner, and that would mean I could scan humiliating photos of my friends and family myself from the past to share with the blogosphere.

3. I could save, like a million dollars, by printing my own coupons.

4. Pretty much, I just want to win and this would be a great thing to win.

Now you can go here to enter too, but remember, if you win, think of the little people (aka me) who don't have a printer, and consider sending it my way instead, kthanx!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Sunday Dinner, Corn Chowder Edition

Back in college days, my freshman roommates and I decided the best way to snag a guy was to invite them over for Sunday dinner. Our plan was slightly flawed, in that we always had pretty much the same group of guys over and we only went on a small handful of dates with them.

Anyway. At the same time we were also pretty poor and not very skilled in the kitchen, but somehow, we were all talented enough to impress these 18 year old guys with our "home" cooking (actually, I think it was mostly Beka's dinner rolls, yum).

One of my favorite recipes came from the quietest and most studious of our apartment, Tanya (who is now going to pharmacist school). So simple, so cheap, so quick, so delicious... Can you tell why we loved it so much?

Here's the recipe.

Parmesan Corn Chowder

2 c. boiling water
2 c chopped potatoes
1/2 c sliced carrots
1/2 c sliced celery
1/4 c onion

Cover and simmer 10 minutes, do not drain.

Meanwhile, make a white sauce, with
1 & 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 butter/margarine
1/4 c flour
2 c milk

After sauce comes together, add:

1 c. parmesan cheese (I don't think we added this when I was in college, and frankly I found it to be a bit over powering, but Jeff LOVED it, I think it would be best with about a 1/2 a c), oh and don't worry about using that fancy fresh off the block stuff, grated Kraft in a jar would have been stretching our budget, if you know what I mean...

Add sauce to veggies, plus:

15 oz can corn (could be creamed corn, or about a can's worth of frozen corn)

Heat (do not boil) and serve. Oh, and add a bit more pepper if you are like me and you like a little more kick.

Seriously, so delicious and done from start to finish in less than 20 minutes!

One last note about making the white sauce, when I made this in college I would just throw everything in the veggie pot (don't judge, it was before foodnetwork) and it always tasted great, but last week when I made it again, actually making the white sauce, it was better than I remembered!

Check out others who are Blissfully Domestic here.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Some Romance For Your Weekend

A couple of new blogs you might find fun. They are both Mormon, Utah based, romance stories.

First, checkout My Super Hopeless Romance, a fictional tale about Cordy and her two loves.

Next, head over to Keeping the Flame Alive, a true story, a wife is writing to her husband chronicling her life before they got together.

For both of them, I recommend starting at the first article in the archive and then reading up to today. Kind of fun to reflect back at romance past and to remember why life is SO MUCH BETTER now that I am married!

Friday, November 7, 2008

A Glimpse Into The Life of A SAHM

This week I have been quite busy, between two babies feedings and diaper changes, Callie has been quite busy perfecting the art of cheating at Peek A Boo.

She doesn't always close her fingers when "hiding," but she has made real progress in her skills.

While I spent HOURS today playing this thrilling game, when I could have been blogging, cleaning, wouldn't you do just about anything for this sweet face?

**We believe one of the reasons she loves this game is because it repeats her nickname, Boo, over and over again.
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Thursday, November 6, 2008

My 6 Quirks

I think this is the first time I have been tagged in a blog! Yea! Thanks Jamie!

My six quirks:

1. The first odd thing that comes to mind is my HATRED of cotton balls. Seriously. I know you are laughing. They are just so, bleh, it is like fingernails on a chalkboard. The only thing worse than the cotton balls, is pulling cotton balls apart. Yeck. On that same line, I don't wear fleece clothes if they feel too much like cotton balls and I don't like to pull wet sweaters out of the washing machine. Oh and if there is a cotton ball in the top of a bottle of medicine, I use tweezers to get it out.

2. My favorite food is salsa, which is normally a condiment. If it is a good pico de gallo, I will eat it with a spoon. And the best way to get good salsa is to either make it yourself or if you're feeling lazy, buy it from a taqueria/Mexican restaurant.

3. When loading the dishwasher I prefer the silverware handles all pointing up, that way when they are unloaded, no one is touching the part I eat off of.

4. My family called me big foot when I was in high school because of my "huge" feet, but in college I wore the smallest size of almost all of my roommates (I think there were 26 total roommates and only Bekabootwo, had smaller feet than me, I wear a size 7-7.5, which is pretty average).

5. After every shower I have to use a Q-Tip to clean/dry my ears (sorry Traci). After Traci told me it was bad to use Q-Tips when we were in college, I stopped for about a month, but then one day I did it again and I haven't looked back since.

6. I don't like plain chocolate. Mix in some caramel, or even better, some peanut butter and it is delish. Dark chocolate and semi-sweet are also not tasty, so when I make Chocolate Chip Cookies, I always use milk chocolate.

Now for six people to tag... I only know of one person who reads my blog often enough to tag (besides Traci and Jamie, who were already tagged), so I guess it goes to Robin if you want.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I need something light

The other day I saw this blog and I had to submit something I heard. They added a MUCH better title and posted my story.

Check it out.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

This Election Day...

This election day, I am voting according to my conscience. I have prayed over each of my choices and I am voting for the best for our nation, my family and me.

That being said, elections aren't all that simple for me. I am a pretty black and white kind of person. If I am right, then you must be wrong. What makes politics palatable for me though is that I know when it is all said and done there aren't really any completely black and white choices. Do I think Obama or McCain is really the best for all aspects of the job? Not so much. They both have their good and bad points.

The same goes for many of the ballot initiatives. Most of them have points that are good, and if my pockets were a bit deeper, I would be great with adding on some more taxes to fund a road project that I agree with on (some points of), but since Jeff and I have been married (just over 5 years) one of the roads on their projected project list is a road that has been resurfaced 3 times. While other roads (on our side of the creek) have been in a continuously deteriorating state of disrepair since I left for college (maybe all those drives through Nevada made me realize just how bad Modesto's roads really are).

Or voting Yes on a bond measure that Jamie Lee Curtis assures me means no new taxes (really... just how is that bond going to get paid back then), after all it's for the children (I guess since it is for a Children's Hospital, it is only fair for them to have to pay the bill for it when the bonds come due right?)

All that being said, I just wonder about if we should consider how carefully we are budgeting the funds already available.

Right now I would love to have a second car, a new wardrobe, or even some gourmet cheeses, but that just isn't in the cards. I choose to turn the AC off when it would be more comfortable to have it about 5 degrees cooler. I walk to the grocery store if I need things while Jeff is at work. I even make due with the off brand super size bags o' grated cheese.

So for now, I don't think the Bullet train is in the cards for us. I would love to be able to hop on the train and have a short ride up to Sacramento, or even take a super quick trip down to visit my sis in So. Cal. But if the train was done right now I wouldn't be able to afford a bullet train ticket to either of those places, and that is before more of my income would be taken to pay back the bond necessary to pay for it.

I do feel strongly about Proposition 8. Marriage is a union between a man and woman. Period, end of story. This proposition is not going to take away any of the rights of homosexuals, it only restores that marriage is between a man and woman. Gay and lesbian relationships will still have the option of joining in Civil Unions that give them THE SAME legal rights as marriage. I believe this proposition has a lot to do with a definition of marriage and nothing to do with rights. I believe that even if this amendment to the California State Constitution passes, future legislation will be enacted to make it a requirement for adding homosexual education to current sex education in public schools (while I believe it would happen, I don't support this). I believe passing this amendment would protect religious groups and their first amendment right to practice their religion. I fear that if this amendment fails it is one more way for judges, lawyers, and government to dictate who (my church in particular) must allow to be married.

Life will go on if the voters disagree with these particular measures. I will somehow be able to pay my bills and my faith will not be shaken. I believe in our system of government and even if things get really crazy for the next four, eight, twelve years, I know that eventually things will get turned around.

Last but certainly not least, I have been trying to do an exercise the past few weeks (even before I saw the article)... Read all about it here

(I know you have been reading for a really long time, and like the last time I waxed poetic on politics, a lot of it might not make sense, but you really should go read this kind of fluffy article that is better written than what I have had to say, I promise)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Scary Politics

The election season is a scary time, but don't worry, this political watchdog has our backs.

Under her watchful eye, there won't be any monkey business

Sorry, you have now reached the end of my not so witty puns comparing Halloween and the elections.

Halloween was fun. Callie was pretty good for all of our constant dressing and undressing her as we showed her off to friends and family. The same went for Alyson. Since the weather was still so warm and their costumes so fluffy they were both miserably hot. Shelly came with us to our ward trunk or treat and party and by the end of it, Callie was just in tights and a body suit, Alyson's top was unzipped, and it was "Babies Gone Wild, Halloween Edition."
Stay tuned for tomorrows political commentary.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I'm Tired, So Very Tired

A few things working against today's post.

First off, it is dark outside and it has been for a while. My body has not yet caught on to the fact that Daylight Savings is over and the baby must have missed the memo too, because she got up at 5:30 AM... and that is too early. She did also decide to go to bed early though, so the debate begins, do I transition her back to the staying up later/sleeping later, or now that she is on the get up early/go to bed early do I just stick with it... On second thought, who am I kidding? Anyone who knows me can tell you how much I love mornings.

Second, the camera and the computer are not getting along again, and given my current state of mind, I don't think I could manage to sit through a restart.

And last, but certainly not least, since it is NaBloPoMo, there were a lot of other posts to read when I sat down at the computer today and my brain was drained by the time I finished reading them (funny, most of the posts I read were like mine, lamenting that they had nothing really to say and it is only day 2 of 30).

Tomorrow, I promise a real post that will include pictures and maybe a political statement or two... Tis The Season, right?

Saturday, November 1, 2008

A Tear Jerker

One of my favorite blogs to read these days is C Jane.

In it she posts about her life and the recovery of her sister, Stephanie, of NieNie.

Just in case you haven't been following their story, this article does a great job of summarizing what has happened and even if you have been following their story, you should read it-- warning: it will make you cry.

Friday, October 31, 2008



I finally figured it out. Well kinda. There is no way I would be smart enough (yet) to actually write code for my own blog template...

But luckily, I found a cute template that I kind of like that I was able to use. I actually liked her other templates quite a bit better, but they kept giving me some bx error messages, and I couldn't really fix 'em because I don't know anything about code other than copy and paste (I even know the short cuts--impressive, right?).

This update should get me ready for the real NaBloPoMo, which begins tomorrow. Don't you think the new template is inspirational, and surely with a cute page like that I won't run out of things to say for each day next month...

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Jeff and I joke that once you get close enough to a popular destination, like an airport or national park, there are "stupid signs" and all you have to do is follow the stupid signs and you will get where you need to go.

I figured if I wanted to change my blogger template there would be some stupid signs to follow and all would be well. Now I have deleted a whole bunch of stuff, seen a ton of error messages, and I am currently scared to try anything else, for fear of losing my entire blog history.

If I'm not here tomorrow, cry for me... and then find me a good web designer who works on the cheap (aka: free), so I can have my sanity restored.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

In the shower...

Do you ever think of a great idea for a blog post while you are in the shower? And then, start planning out how you are going to write it and forget if you have washed your hair yet? And then while washing your hair (for possibly the second time), realize that would make a funny observation post and forget the other idea you had?

Oh, you don't... I was just curious.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Have You Seen These Posts?

So a couple days almost a week ago, I promised Traci I would post some links to some of my favorite blogs that day. I still haven't done it, so I guess the time has arrived. When I was talking to her I realized I hadn't updated the list of blogs I read and occasionally comment on. Then there was a new way to list blogs, and I realized I don't read all the ones I had listed before... So basically a big list of excuses, when all you really want is the reading assignment suggestion.

A few favorites:
Seriously So Blessed-- A total Mormon Mommy Blog satire. It is written by a grad student who attends the University of Utah and she is a relatively new mom, but is keeping her identity a secret all while she rakes in the readers. Check out today's post and this one from a couple weeks back.

What About Mom--I have been following the life of Jane for quite a while (like 6 months and that is forever in blog-time). I originally saw her comment on someone else's site about singing Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam and I figured she was a Mormon Mommy Blogger and I went to check out her blog. She is really talented. Anyway, her last three posts have made me giggle and I would love to make ya'all laugh too, so you should go check 'em out. In order of my personal giggle factor, The one dish towel day, Throughly unworthy emotions, and What's in your cupholder.

The last bit I will note today is California Proposition 8. Proposition 8 defines marriage as a union between a man and woman. I fully support this measure for moral and religious reasons. Over the past few weeks, a friend of mine has been doing a great job posting about Proposition 8 and the implications of it on her site. My sister in law also sent me this link to a site an individual put together. Or you can go to the Protect Marriage site and see some of the ads and implications there.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ahoy Landlubbers!

Everybody is happy!

Windblown baby!

In front of Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey there is the Monterey Maritime and History Musuem. We had about 30 minutes to look around before babies got bored (and pooped, literally) but it was pretty interesting while we were there. On the way out there was a ship that we paused to take pictures at. The girls loved it.
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Foot Muffs in Action

When we bought this stroller, the previous owners gave us all the accessories, including these foot muffs. I took them and thought I would probably not be likely to use them. After all, they were probably made for people in really cold places like New England or Utah in the dead of winter (or during homecoming weekend as I heard the first snow arrived last week). Actually though, they were helpful because the babies could not kick out of them like they could a traditional blanket. And while I thought to take the muffs on our journey to the coast because it could be the only chance to use them, they will probably become a regular accessory on our fall/winter walks.
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Grandpa Fast came for a visit last week and at first he suggested going to Monterey. He later tried to change his mind saying he didn't know how the babies would do. Jeff, Shelly and I tried to reassure him that all would be well, babies would sleep in the car and it would indeed be a lovely trip. We were right only on the last count. It was a fun trip, but sleep was definitely lacking. It turns out when babies are face to face with their mama's they see no good reason to sleep. So the trip to and from included crying and sadness, but for some reason, even with the small amount of sleep, they were both so well behaved while there. For us, given the choice between a happy baby in the car, or a happy baby in a restaurant and museum, we'll take the happy baby in public. What can we say? We like to keep up good appearances!

The wind was pretty intense, but it made the ocean gorgeous. After we left the wharf, we drove down cannery row and then drove along the coast for a ways just before seventeen mile drive. The ocean had this really pretty green, aqua, seaglass color that you can kind of see in the middle of this picture.
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