Monday, December 20, 2010

hmmm.

Wow, I guess that Nablopomo really burned me out on blogging. I'm not really sure what we've been up to. We've either been really busy, or doing nothing and just trying to take a breather and catch up on...life. Anyway, my friend loaned me Big Bang Theory-the complete 3rd season on DVD, and since I don't have TV, so I never get to watch anything until I get to see it on DVD, and I LOVE TV... a lot, I am going to go watch it and maybe I'll blog tomorrow.

G'night.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Ollie

We finally got a video of Oliver walking. Watch his expression at the end. His eyebrows kill me!

video

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

You Can Dance

I love both these TV shows, and I am so pleased that they both did a tribute to this awesome song. I love the choreography on the Glee version. It makes me want to spontaneously start dancing in public places.

For your enjoyment:




Monday, November 29, 2010

Oliver's Room

I repainted Oliver's room back in June, when I also painted my room. I haven't posted pictures because I've been dragging my feet finishing his room. I completed another phase a couple of days ago, so I'm just going to post pictures now, even though it's far from complete. But really, I have no idea when it will be complete. Finding the time and money to do what I really want is going to take a while.

Here are the before pictures:

A very bright (ok, WAY too bright) yellow
With a cute girl-y flower and butterfly wallpaper border.



The after pictures:
Just a little bit more boyish for my little man


I know these pictures aren't great, but I am having a really hard time taking good looking pictures of things that aren't people.





I still need to:
-paint the rocking chair
-get a new curtain (there isn't a picture, but it's RED right now)
-the lighthouse bedding set (crib bumpers, diaper holder, crib skirt) stuff will go very soon.
-I will probably also paint the Pooh Bear dresser, or get him a new dresser within about a year. I can't decide. It's SO cute, so I hate to paint it, but it's just not quite my style. Maybe I'll just get him a new dresser, and save the cute Pooh Bear for a baby girls room (someday, far in the future) I do like the yellow and blue colors together, though.
-he also needs a toy chest or bench

Anyway, even though it isn't perfect, it is a vast improvement. I LOVE how the color turned out and it's now my favorite room in the house.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Book Review: The Christmas List

Summary:
James Kier looked back and forth between the newspaper headline and the photograph of himself, not sure if he should laugh or call his attorney. It was the same photograph the Tribune had used a couple of years earlier when they featured him on the front page of the business section. While the photograph was the same, the headlines could not have been more different. not many people get to read their own obituary.

LOCAL REAL ESTATE MOGUL DIES IN AUTOMOBILE CRASH

Utah real estate developer James Kier was pronounced dead after his car collided with a concrete pylon on southbound I-80. Authorities believe Keir may have had a heart attack prior to swerving off the road. Kier was the president of the Kier Company, one of the West's largest real estate development firms. He was known as a fierce, oftentimes ruthless, businessman. He once said "If you want to make friends, join a book club. If you want to make money, go into business. Only a fool confuses the two." Kier is survived by his son, James Kier II, and his wife, Sara.

Kier put the paper down. He had no idea what the article was about to set in motion.

My Thoughts:
This was an extremely quick read and a good Christmas spirit story. It is very much like Dickens A Christmas Carol, so it was pretty predictable. However it was an interesting book that I couldn't put down. I really like the idea of a character not only reading his own obituary (which are usually always positive) but that he saw a message board on the newspapers site under the article about his death (which was brutally honest and even cruel). Kier tries to make amends with people that he has viciously hurt and ruined their lives through his ruthless business practices. He really starts out to change his image, but throughout the process of restitution, he changes himself and wants to do what is right because he is ashamed and wants to be a good person. It's very intriguing to think about what people will say about me when I die, and a good reminder of how I should be living my life right now, and of the true meaning of Christmas.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving

Ah, Thanksgiving is a wonderful Holiday. Family and friends congregate to enjoy each others' company and to share and enjoy delicious food. Turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing...sweet potatoes, corn, peas...pumpkin pie, apple pie, candy-bar pie...Yumminess.
We spent our holiday with Jerry's brother James and his family in Columbus, Georgia. We played games, sat around the house talking, playing with the kids, and shopping. Katie and Ruth went to see Tangled while Jerry and James "took care of things around the house."
And then disaster struck.
((Cue suspenseful music))
Friday night started off nice. Jerry, Katie, James and Ruth went to see Unstoppable while the kids stayed home and watched movies and went to bed. When we returned Jonah and Oliver were both asleep; Oliver in the porta-crib and Jonah on a spare mattress, his head and torso on the floor, while the rest of him lay on the bed. (He was in one piece, don't misread that!) Jerry put him back in bed and pulled up the covers and then he and Katie went to bed.
And then, like the warning of flames spitting up from the 'Fire Swamp', Jonah's stomach began summoning his digestive system to give up their contents and BAM!
Jonah was throwing up.
Katie and Jerry took turns on watch, listening for the warning of Jonah needing to throw up. Burp and gurgle-- get him over the bowl--heave. It was a gruesome and sleepless night for all of us. Except for Oliver who slept quietly in the adjacent room.
Jonah's stomach was as true as Old Faithful and every 20 minutes Jerry or Katie was at his side holding him over the bowl. Bless his heart. If he could, he would have slept through each episode. In fact, he probably did every time after 2 am.
When 7 am finally came around, Oliver began crying and Jerry went to get him only to find that his Aunt Ruth had already gotten him and had taken him to the bathroom because, yeah, he too, had the bug and was throwing up. Thank goodness he slept the whole night, otherwise, this night would have been doubly-disastrous.
Thank goodness, the severity of it all had passed by this point and all of them, especially Jonah, Oliver, and Katie, got some much needed naps that afternoon. Until Katie got sick too.
It was a long, long 5 hour drive home from Columbus.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Movie Reviews

I didn't really do too much shopping today. But I did see two movies! Yay, I love movies.

First I saw Disney's newest animated film, Tangled:

Summary:
The long-haired Princess Rapunzel has spent her entire life in a tower, but when she falls in love with a bandit who was passing by she must venture into the outside world for the first time to find him.

My Thoughts:
I loved this movie and give it four stars! It was clever, smart, funny, romantic, and beautifully done. It really had that Disney magic feel to it which I haven't felt a lot of their more recent films have had (except The Princess and the Frog, but I actually liked Tangled better.)

Later we left the kids home and just the adults went to see Unstoppable starring Chris Pine and Denzel Washington:

Summary:
With an unmanned, half-mile-long freight train barreling toward a city, a veteran engineer and a young conductor race against the clock to prevent a catastrophe.

My Thoughts:
This movie was pretty intense, but definitely primarily an action flick and I give it about 2 1/2 stars. It was a mixture of Speed and Training Day. I was riveted and totally engrossed the entire time, but they really really didn't develop the characters as much as they should have.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Book Review: Roseanne Cash Composed

Rosanne Cash Composed

Summary:
For thirty years as a musician, Rosanne Cash has enjoyed both critical and commercial success, releasing a series of albums that are as notable for their lyrical intelligence as for their musical excellence. Now, in her memoir, Cash writes compellingly about her upbringing in Southern California as the child of country legend Johnny Cash, and of her relationships with her mother and her famous stepmother, June Carter Cash. In her account of her development as an artist she shares memories of a hilarious stint as a twenty-year-old working for Columbia Records in London; recording her own first album on a German label; working her way to success; her marriage to Rodney Crowell, a union that made them Nashville's premier couple; her relationship with the country music establishment; taking a new direction in her music and leaving Nashville to move to New York; motherhood; dealing with the deaths of her parents, in part through music; the process of songwriting; and the fulfillment she has found with her current husband and musical collaborator, John Leventhal. Cash has written an unconventional and compelling memoir that, in the tradition of M. F. K. Fisher's The Gastronomical Me and Frank Conroy's Stop-Time, is a series of linked pieces that combine to form a luminous and brilliant whole.
My Thoughts:
I am actually one of the few people who was familiar with Rosanne Cash long before I knew who Johnny Cash was. My mother listened to pop country music while I was growing up, but openly confessed that she hated "old" country music (like Johnny Cash). So I knew very well who Roseanne Cash was from a very early age. In fact, when I first became interested in music at about the age of 9 or 10, the tapes that I took from my mom and listened to constantly were Rosanne Cash-Kings Record Shop, the Footloose soundtrack, every Judd's Album, and Anne Murray (don't ask me where that last one came from-like I said, I was figuring out music) I am now a huge Johnny Cash fan, and probably listen to him more than Rosanne Cash, but I still like both. However, all this really has nothing to do with this book so...
This was a beautiful memoir of Rosanne Cash's life up to this point (she is 55 now). It was very interesting to learn about the life of the daughter of a music legend who also had her own success and had fame based on her own talent as a songwriter and singer. She speaks about her struggle when she was younger to be judged on her own merits and not because of who her father is. Now that she is older she is starting to embrace it more, which comes full circle from when she started in life. I was surprised about how much she did talk about her father in the book because of her concern of living in his shadow, but I am so glad that she did. The parts talking about her father were some of my favorite parts of the book. I really enjoyed learning about how good of a father he was and his parenting style of always being there for her if she needed it, but never giving unsolicited advice. Even when he was strung out, he could still dig down deep and tell her exactly what she needed to hear. I am fascinated by the father/adult daughter relationship because I have no personal experience draw from.
She has a really good use of language, but at times she seems to use a lot of words to not say very much. I like a bit more plot and stories and a little less introspection. If this was someone I knew personally, I think those parts would mean a lot more to me. And they were appropriate, considering that this is a memoir, but being a published book for the public, it gets a bit too sentimental for me.
If you are a big fan of Johnny or Rosanne Cash, then you'll really enjoy this book, but if not then you might not care to read it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Random thoughts on my way out the door

I need to blog, but I'm on my way out the door. I going to Columbus for Thanksgiving. I'm hoping to finish two books that I'm reading and I will hopefully have book reviews coming soon.

I went bowling yesterday for the first time in like 5 years. It was pretty fun. Jonah only lasted for about 5 frames. I had the amazing score of 85, and yes, that is WITH bumpers. Man I am really bad at bowling.

Then I went to give blood. They called me and asked me to come donate. With the upcoming holiday they really need blood, especially my type. I haven't been able to donate for about 3 years because I've been pregnant or breastfeeding, so it feels really good to be able to donate again. You should donate too, if you can. It really isn't scary and you can save 3 lives! I know this all sounds like a Red Cross commercial, but really think about if something were to happen to you or your kids and you needed blood. Wouldn't you be grateful that someone donated for you? Just something to think about.

Have a wonderful THANKSGIVING!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Library

I love the Library. I could spend hours and hours there and never get sick of it. I can browse shelves and look through books and never feel satisfied. In fact the more books I look at the more books I want to read. Yesterday I went and ended up buying 6 books to add the the stack of 15 (yes 15) books that are already on my bedside table waiting to be read.

Lately I've really wanted to start reading some classics, because there are really very few that I've ever read. I only finally read Pride and Prejudice last summer, and To Kill a Mockingbird a couple months ago. Right now I'm reading my first Dickens-Great Expectations which I'm really enjoying. Although, it isn't exactly a book that "I just can't wait to get home or get the kids to bed so I can read" kind of book. Whenever I pick it up, I enjoy it, but it's definitely been slow going. Yesterday I bought two books that are on my list to read "someday". Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, and Selected Stories of Franz Kafka. I've always wanted to read something by Kafka but I hope that I chose a good one.

Also on my list of classic's to read:

something by Hemingway (which one is best?)
something by Steinbeck (which one is best?)
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
The Great Gatsby
- F Scott Fitzgerald
The Count of Monte Cristo-Alexandre Dumas
Dracula - Bram Stoker

Any other books that belong on this list?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Oliver Jack Johnson


My sweet baby Oliver turned 1 yesterday and I just can't believe it. Not only did it seem to go faster than Jonah's first year (because all successive years seem to pass by quicker than the ones before to me) but Oliver hit almost every milestone about 3 months sooner than Jonah did. He is the most fun baby. He has such a charming personality. He has the best smile and he is probably about the MOST wiggly baby there ever was (I'm not exaggerating, changing his diaper or clothes takes two people) but you can't help but smile when your wrestling him because he thinks it is just about the funniest thing ever.
Happy Birthday Ollie!




Sunday, November 21, 2010

Oh man!!!

I was doing so well and I missed posting yesterday! I'm so disappointed in myself. However, I think I do have a pretty good excuse. Yesterday we had a birthday party for Oliver who turns 1 today! I was so busy all day yesterday getting ready for his party, and then busy partying hard that I completely forgot about the blog and NaBloPoMo. Oh well, if I had made it through the whole month perfectly, that just wouldn't be like me, because hey-I ain't perfect. So maybe I'm kind of glad I missed a day. Because perfection is boring.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Fill in the Blog

So, today was Jerry's "day off" and blog blog blog blog blog blog had to do military training. Blog blog blog blog left 7 a.m. blog blog running blog blog blog blog Katie blog blog blog happy. Meanwhile, Jonah blog blog blog Oliver and blog blog blog blog napped!
Jerry called and said, "blog blog dinner?" So, Katie said, "blog blog blog blog." And Jerry responded "blog blog blog take care of it."
Blog blog blog blog just in time for blog blog blog. So they made blog blog and Katie is an blog blog blog. And then, blog blog blog the balloons blog blog blog Oliver's birthday party!
And now, blog blog blog very tired and blog blog blog sleep. In the morning blog blog when blog blog Jonah and then blog blog. But then Oliver will surely blog blog blog. And Jerry will surely blog blog, again, blog blog "day off."
The Blog.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

It's really a shame about SPAM


and I'm not talking about unwanted email. SPAM the canned meat is so good and it has such a bad reputation, and I'm wondering why? Is it because there is a lot of fat? Bacon is super fatty and everybody loves bacon. Is it because it's ground up meat reshaped? So are hamburgers and hot dogs and who doesn't like hamburgers and hot dogs. Is is because it's in a can? Tuna comes in a can I don't know anybody who would refuse a good tuna sandwich.

Well, I love SPAM and I'm not afraid to say it. I've actually talked to quite a few people who say they hate it, but then I find out they have never even tried it!

In case you think that you hate SPAM, but haven't tried it in a while (or ever) why not give it a try? Just slice it pretty thin (about 1/2 in) and cook it just like bacon, on your griddle or frying pan and just cook both sides until golden brown. Eat it with eggs and toast for breakfast (it's surprisingly good dipped in syrup, too-like ham or bacon). Or, after it's fried, grill some onions, melt some cheese on it and eat it between toast with lettuce and tomato for a YUMMY sandwich.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

What I really wish I was doing today


I've had a request to give some information on snow shoeing, so if you happen to live somewhere with snow, this post is for you. If you don't, then you can read it and wish you lived somewhere with snow.

I can't really give you too much information. The picture above is me snow shoeing up to my grandparents cabin in 2007 when I was pregnant with Jonah. Those are my mom's snow shoes that I borrowed. If you can tell from the picture, they are a modern snowshoe, which is what I would recommend.

If you have something like this...
You may want to consider updating. These will be very difficult and you will look really silly. Trust me, we used to have some of these when I was younger and they just weren't much fun.
This is what you want:
You just wear your regular snow boots, strap them on and walk on top of the snow. It's pretty fun. But it's mostly just like going for a walk. Actually, I hardly ever snowshoe. What I REALLY love to do is this:

Cross country skiing! It is the best workout, and the best part is when you get to the top of the hill, you can turn around and ski down instead of having to walk down like you do with snow shoes.

If you want equipment, you can rent it or you can buy. I know there's a great place by Macey's in Orem called Play It Again Sports, and they sell used sports equipment, so you could probably get a really good deal. One of the best things about getting your own equipment is that once you do snowshoeing or cross country skiing is totally free. You could even find any empty field or park and just go!

If you live in Utah county, I would recommend going up American Fork Canyon. There are a lot of places to go there, and there are two places that actually close to all snowmobiles and groom cross country skiing trails. They are Little Mill campground, which is about halfway to Tibble Fork Reservoir, and Granite Flat's campground. To get to Granite Flat's Campground, you park at Tibble Fork Reservoir, then ski up and to the right on the road until you get there. It is by far the best and most beautiful. It does take a bit more time to get there, but it's really worth it. It has the most snow, and it's really quiet and peaceful:
(This is me and my brother-in-law Jeremy in 2004, and yes, that is like 4 feet of snow on the roof the that building)
Groomed trails are really nice, but not necessary. From the parking lot at Tibble Fork Reservoir, you can also go right on the Mineral Basin road:
(Me and Katie B. in 2008 when we were both pregnant.)

Mineral Basin Road is nice and flat if you want a little easier workout, but there will be snowmobiles and the snow will be a lot more packed down and possibly icy depending how the weather has been. If you need someone to go with, let me know because my mom will seriously go with you. And she would probably let you borrow some gear to try out too. She goes all the time and is always looking for someone to go with her.

But where I really wish I was going today is my grandparents cabin in Midway. The only way to get there in the winter is by cross country skiing, snowshoeing, or snowmobile.

This is where I really found my love for cross country skiing. We've been going up there my whole life. When I was very small, my mom would put me on a sled or tube and pull me up, then when I was big enough I would ski myself. At the cabin we roast marshmallows and hot dogs over the fire, drink hot chocolate, boil snow for water, go sledding ALL day, and just spend time with my family talking and playing games.
By the way; If you want to know how to dress for snow sports, please see picture above that was taken with my mom when I was like 10. I'm wearing a green sweatshirt and pink sweatpants with a pink robe over the top, and the MOST essential thing to have in a freezing cold cabin: The big orange booties. Man, I was a pioneer in fashion since I was in elementary school! But the Pièce de résistance was the awesome coat and hat I wore up the cabin on this same trip:
Man, I was awesome!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dessert Update

I attempted to make Pumpkin Dessert again. It is amazing how two baking experiences can be so different. I had all the necessary ingredients, my kids quietly played without disturbing me, and...it only took 15 min.

Yay!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lady Antebellum

This is what I did this afternoon. It was sooooo good! This video really doesn't do justice to how good they sounded. And we were so close, in the 7th row. The two guys are from Augusta, and they mayor came out after and gave them a key to the city, and a street sign because they are naming a street in Augusta Lady Antebellum Way. AND they are going to name a new huge park complex after them. When the County commissioner told them about the park, Hillary (the woman singer) got choked up and cried a little. It was so fun to see them be so excited!

They did this short "lunch hour" show with all benefits going to the MCG Childrens Hospital. I just love seeing star's that are so talented, and giving, and they just seem like really great people. I know I'm not a native Georgian, but I really felt proud that they are from here.

Enjoy!



Sunday, November 14, 2010

Book Review: These Is My Words


Summary:
A moving, exciting, and heartfelt American saga inspired by the author's own family memoirs, these words belong to Sarah Prine, a woman of spirit and fire who forges a full and remarkable existence in a harsh, unfamiliar frontier. Scrupulously recording her steps down the path Providence has set her upon-from child to determined young adult to loving mother-she shares the turbulent events, both joyous and tragic, that molded her, and recalls the enduring love with cavalry officer Captain Jack Elliot that gave her strength and purpose.
Rich in authentic everyday details and alive with truly unforgettable characters, These Is My Words brilliantly brings a vanished world to breathtaking life again.

My thoughts:
I loved this book. It was such a wonderful love story. I read it in 2 days and pretty much walked around with a silly grin on my face the whole time just thinking about the fierce love between Jack and Sarah. The way he teases her and loves her for just who she is is so sweet. It doesn't just get up to the engagement and then leave you with "and they lived happily ever after". It shows the real hardships they lived through and how even though they grow and change, their love only grows deeper. The story is written from her perspective (obviously-it's her diary) but it includes some details about him and things he does or writes or says that proves his feeling for her is as deep and unshakable as her own. You never once doubt his feelings for her. The middle of the book is by far the best, but I really loved the whole thing. It reads like a real diary. Sometimes she writes everyday. Sometimes it's months or even years between entries. The characters really come to life and you can feel yourself living this story. I cried at the beginning and at the end and still can't believe how it ends, but it was so good. Did I already say that? It's so good. Read it.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pioneer Woman

When I was growing up I thought I was a pioneer. Whenever we had to do something hard, my dad would tell my sisters and I that we were pioneer women and that we were strong and we could do anything. We even had a quilt that we called the pioneer blanket. (I don’t have any idea why it was called the pioneer blanket. As I am the youngest in my family, the name must have come about sometime before I can remember, but I’ve never thought to ask anyone). Whenever the power would go out we would light candles and cuddle under our pioneer blanket and tell stories or listen to my dad read, or just giggle and have an excellent time. My ancestors were pioneers who came across the plains and so I guess that I have pioneer blood in me. I grew up in the mountains: camping, backpacking, hiking, cross country skiing, making fires, and doing all that kind of great outdoor stuff. When I got a little older I learned to ride horses, tie knots, sew, and even shoot guns. Besides all this fun outdoor stuff, I’ve always been especially independent. Both my parents worked and my whole family was always pretty busy, so I just learned to take care of myself. I even lived on my own, basically in my car or staying at friends’ houses during the summer before my senior year of high school, while working two jobs and participating in drill team and student council. By now you’re probably thinking that I should stop bragging and get to the point. Be patient, I’m getting there. The point of telling you all of this is that basically I’ve always thought of my self as self-sufficient and able to take care of myself.

Ever since I’ve been with Jerry and especially since we moved to Georgia, my life has been very different. He helps me so much and I’ve really learned to rely on him, probably even too much. Before he left this past summer, I had a really hard time almost every day when he would leave for work. I just felt like I couldn’t handle things on my own, and it really bothered me. A pioneer woman wouldn’t cry just because her husband was going to work for the day. When he left for the summer, the first few weeks were extremely hard. Luckily I had a lot of help and as the summer went on I finally started feeling like I was handling things alright and even sometimes like I was succeeding. By the end of the summer I finally started feeling a bit like my old pioneer self again.

However since I was little there has always been one thing that I couldn’t do and felt embarrassed that a strong independent woman should be able to do. Drive a stick shift (manual transmission) car. My mom never learned and I always thought that was so out of character for her. She was the one dragging me and my sisters all over the mountains (by herself) and teaching me most of my pioneer “skills”. I’ve been taught on about four different occasions to drive a stick shift, but I’ve never had my own manual transmission car, so I never got enough practice to be able to do it smoothly. A few weeks ago Jerry bought an old little truck (with a manual transmission) for him to commute to work in. I have been a little apprehensive to drive it because it’s been about three years since I even attempted to drive a stick. Tonight I decided to drive to the store to get us a soda and to take the truck out for some practice. Jerry couldn’t go with me to help me because we have the boys and there isn’t exactly room for two car seats and two adults. Anyway, I did really well and I just couldn’t stop beaming with pride because I finally feel like I conquered this. I know it’s something small and silly, but that is exactly why it’s always bothered me that I couldn’t do it. So I challenge you to conquer something that you’ve always wanted to learn to do. Maybe even before the end of the year. Why wait until the New Year to start your new year’s resolutions? What is something that you’ve always wanted to be able to do?

Friday, November 12, 2010

My cute boy

Me: "Jonah, are you going to grow up to be big, strong, and brave like daddy?"
Jonah: "No, I"m going to be a puppy"

It was a beautiful day, and Jerry rolled down the window of the car to get some fresh air. The wind coming in the window was blowing on Jonah and he yelled "No, my HAIR!"

During Oliver's nap, I smelled some stink coming from Jonah. Knowing that he had messed his diaper, I asked, "Jonah, did you poop?" to which he replied "No, it was Oliver!"

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Katie-Talks-in-Sleep and the Glass of Water

Once, many moons ago, Katie-Talks-in-Sleep and her Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg were sleeping soundly on their leopard skins, that Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg had acquired during violent hunting episodes in the nearby woods. Katie-Talks-in-Sleep was only recently given to Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg in marriage by her mother, and they had only slept in their modest lean-to but a handful of nights.
Katie-Talks-in-Sleep loved water. She used to be a man-child-life-saver by the riverside prior to being courted by her Warrior. After their first engagement at the Medicine Man's spiritual revival for single-adults, they would go on swim adventures to the deepest lakes, and fjord the raging rivers that surrounded the territory where they met.
But, the author digresses.
Katie-Talks-in-Sleep's Man-man was thus sleeping, sawing logs with a bone-handled rock (as the primitive metaphor might allow), when Katie-Talks-in-Sleep awoke him and said, 'Husband, give me some water.'
Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg drowsily rubbed his eyes and considered the request his Woman had made of him, reached over and procured the cup of water which the couple maintained at the side of their sleeping skins and placed it into Katie-Talks-in-Sleep's waiting hands. She clasped the cup ever so tightly. Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg layed back down and began chopping logs immediately.
'Chop, chop, chop, chop, chop, chop......chop, chop, chop, chop...'
Suddenly, Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg was suddenly awoken by the piercing of the still night by Katie-Talks-in-Sleep's shrill--"WHY AM I ALL WET!?!" She was soaked through, from the top blanket down to her under-skins. The cup she had taken from Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg was lying on the bed, emptied of its contents.
"...Um, you ask for glass water," Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg replied, dumbfoundedly.
"No, I did not," she rebutted.
"Yes, Katie-Talks-in-Sleep, did" Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg responded.
"Um, No, Jerry-with-Brown-Spot-on-Leg, I did not." And with that Katie-Talks-in-Sleep wrapped a towel about her and went back to bed.

The End.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

out of ideas

Wow, I really lost my steam on blogging idea's. However I'm proud that I've made it a third of the way through the month without missing a day. Ya hoo!

I had a really productive day today which feels so nice. Cleaned out the garage, cleaned out the office, my email inbox, kitchen, and bedroom. But the kids were really whiny and clingy today. I wonder why?... It just goes to show that you can't have it all. And that's ok.

Wow, this is really boring. At this point, this is probably what you look like as a result of being so bored reading this post:

Or maybe:
Normally I would delete this and just go to bed. But I can't miss a day and I don't know what else to write about. And I'm really tired. This is how I feel:

So...I'm going to bed.

Does anyone have any blog ideas for me for the next 20 days of November?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Today I woke up just feeling overwhelmed with all the things I need to do. Lately these things have either been keeping me up at night or making there way into my dreams. I've got a few projects and responsibilities right now in addition to all the usual things required to take care of my house and family. I keep telling myself that it really isn't very much. Compared to most my life isn't really that complicated. All this year Jerry and I have been working on trying to simplify our life. And despite all we have done to clear away stuff, responsibilities, and free our time of things that are unimportant, those spaces just fill up as fast as we clear it away. I know that this is part of life, but it's proving much harder than I anticipated to keep our lives simple. I think that growing up with a complicated life makes it really difficult to really identify the stuff that isn't really important, until it's too late. I know this probably doesn't make any sense. Sorry. It's like I'm so used to having 40 things to do that I had to pick and choose the MOST important and let the rest go. But lately I've been getting almost caught up, and when that happens I don't feel pressure to get anything done and end up wasting time. Then I get behind again on all the things to be done, and it starts all over. I also end up taking on projects that I don't really want to do and normally I would never have time for so it was easy to say no. Lately I kind of have more time so I'm saying yes to things that I shouldn't.

My goal in working on simplification was so that I will be able to accomplish what I need to each and every day, then have time left over to do what I enjoy. Like reading, watching a movie, working on a fun project, spending time with friends and family, learning something new, or just spending time with my family doing something that's only purpose is fun. Like going to the park as opposed to the grocery store.

I'm really tired, and I don't know how to end this thought, so...

That's all I have to say about that.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Oliver is growing up too fast.


Besides growing this insane mustache, Oliver took his first steps today! I'm not ready for my baby to no longer be a baby!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Weekend in Charlotte

I'm home! I big thank you to Jerry for:
1. Letting me go away and watching the boys for the WHOLE WEEKEND
2. Updating the blog the WHOLE WEEKEND
3. Besides taking care of the boys, he kept the house pretty tidy, kept up on the dishes and even had dinner cooking in the crock pot when I walked in the door. What an amazing guy!



My trip was SO SO fun! Me, Lexie, and Tracie went to visit our friend Amy and we just had such a fun time. We went out to dinner, shopped for 6 hours (with NO kids or any other responsibilities to hurry us), ate, and mostly just talked.

Just what I needed. Now on to getting ready for the holidays!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Good Dad, Bad Dad

I can be both a good dad and a terrible dad at the same time: I make sure the boys are fed enough and on time. But I feed them chocolate cereal and muddy buddies. Then, I give them a bath--mostly, I fill the tub up with water--a couple inches or so--and then I sit and wait while they play in the tub. When they start crying I take them out, dry them off and get them dressed for the night.
Tonight, we watched Cinderella after the bath.
And,oh, I don't leave them alone in the tub--that would make me a really terrible dad. I sit next to the tub and think about other stuff--you know power tools....and water skiing.

Every now and then Oliver will wind himself up into a roaring cry. It sounds like the cranking of an engine when you turn the key until it turns over. Oliver does the same thing. Only, it usually stops after 10 seconds. I started timing it.
The other day, though, Jonah and he were playing quietly in the front room and I was in the kitchen--(I could have been on Facebook for the terrible dad scenario). And Oliver started his cry up. And it didn't stop. I thought, 'Hmmm, that's longer than usual.' When I went into him after a minute, he had been playing with a clothespin and got it stuck on his finger. Poor guy.
Am I going to be accused of child neglect for posting this?
As soon as I took it off his finger, he immediately stopped crying and resumed playing. What a trooper.
And I went back to doing the dishes.

Um, tonight I fed the boys Jambalaya with sausage. It was spicy and delicious. Jonah loves the stuff. Oliver stopped eating the rice after two bites, and only ate sausage from then on. Jonah has acquired an immunity to spicy foods. At first, his cheeks would be wet from watering eyes as he continuously shoveled the food into his mouth. Now, he just shoves it right in with no symptoms.
Is it time to increase the level of heat and spice?

Just now--and I'll finish with this--Jonah came out of his room and asked me to sing him a song. I put him to bed over 3 minutes ago. But, I obliged and I asked him which song from my repertoire he'd like me to sing. After a few offers and his response of no's, I just started sing the 'little brown mouse' song. It's about a little brown mouse that laps up the spilled liquor on a bar room floor and at a quarter past 2, eats a 'gosh-darn cat'.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Katie is taking a leave of absence

Katie and a couple of her friends have decided to take a trip to Charlotte, North Carolina to visit their friend, Amy, who moved there last June. She left me and the boys all by ourselves with nothing in the fridge and nothing on the shelves. Well, she did leave some pumpkin dessert behind--which I love very much.
I told Katie that I would carry on her NaBloPoMo--whatever that means--and will be submitting posts over the next three days, beginning today.
So, let's start with how great Katie's husband is:
1: What a sweetheart to let her go to North Carolina for a WHOLE WEEKEND without the kids!
2: What a sweetheart to write her blog for her for a WHOLE WEEKEND without the kids!
and
3: What a sweetheart to eat her delicious pumpkin dessert over the WHOLE WEEKEND (without the kids).

Of course, the three days--or two--whatever--won't even come close to the 4 months I spent in Arizona while you took care of the boys. So, here's to you babe! Have a fun weekend--a WHOLE WEEKEND, without the kids! I hope you get a lot of sleep.
We love you, Katie.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Pumpkin Dessert



Here is a recipe for my favorite dessert. If you like pumpkin pie, you will love it. I love pumpkin pie, but I like this dessert even better. It's sooooo good!

1st layer:

1 pkg. yellow cake mix (reserve 1 cup)
1/2 cup (1 square) softened butter or margarine.
Mix together then add:
1 egg, beaten
spread in bottom of 9x13 in. pan

2nd layer:

1 30 oz. can pumpkin pie mix (if you only have a can of plain pumpkin, add 3 ½ tsp. of pumpkin pie spice OR 2 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1 tsp. ground ginger, and ½ tsp. ground cloves. this is important.)
2 eggs, well beaten
2/3 cup evaporated milk
Mix together and pour over 1st layer

3rd layer:

1 cup cake mix (reserved from 1st layer)
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
3 Tbsp. butter or margarine, melted
Mix together and sprinkle on top of 2nd layer

Bake at 350 for 60-70 min or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Chill. Serve cold, topped with whipped cream. Store in refrigerator.

*Bonus*
How to make delicious pumpkin dessert by Katie Johnson

1. See an open tub of cool whip in the fridge and decide to make a yummy treat to serve under cool whip
2. Find recipe for pumpkin dessert and check pantry for necessary ingredients. You don't have evaporated milk.
3. Go to store to buy evaporated milk
4. Pick up older son from preschool, make and feed lunch to everybody.
5. Try for an hour to get younger son to take a nap.
6. Finally give up on nap for younger son.
7. While older son miraculously does nap, clean bathroom and mop kitchen floor while trying to keep younger son out of the toilet, away from the toilet paper and various cleaning supplies, and off your clean wet floors until older son wakes up.
8. Resume dessert making.
9. Realize that you don't have any yellow cake mix.
10. Go back to store to buy yellow cake mix.
11. Younger son falls asleep in the car on the way to store (of course) so drive around for half an hour to let him sleep.
12. Realize that you're starving and so is older son.
13. Take a small detour to Zaxby's for a delicious and nutritious dinner of fried chicken, french fries, texas toast and coleslaw. Yummy.
14. Eat dinner in grocery store parking lot
15. Go in and buy cake mix
16. Come home and resume dessert making.
17. Have a brilliant idea! Decide that for NaBloPoMo it would be really clever to take pictures of dessert making process and to post those and recipe for pumpkin dessert.

(This is where the serious dessert tutorial begins)

Wash mixer bowl (because you haven't done the dishes yet today):

Make 1st layer
It will be sticky, so cover with wax paper and use a cup to roll it out:
This Dora cup works very nicely. Don't feel sad if you don't have a Dora cup. You can use a boring old glass cup:

Don't forget to remove wax paper when finished:
Think to yourself "these pictures look like crap." wonder how people take good looking pictures of food.
Wash mixer bowl, again:

Mix 2nd layer:
Pour over first layer:

Decide if the leftover evaporated milk is worth saving (It is) :

Wash mixer bowl, again

Younger son is hanging on your leg. Try to walk around and continue making dessert:

Younger son bites your leg while you're taking a picture of him hanging on your leg. He cannot be ignored any longer.

Take a small break to get him a graham cracker. He's happy:


Melt butter for 3rd layer.
When you open microwave you will be disgusted by how dirty your microwave is. Swear you really will clean it tomorrow (you've said that before, but you really will clean it tomorrow. Probably. And no, I'm not putting in a picture of my dirty microwave. Just trust me, it's bad)
When older son sees you taking so many pictures, he wants you to take a picture of his train Thomas:

and Gordon:

and James:
Can you tell he likes Thomas trains?

Make 3rd layer and think to yourself "this looks like dog food, but it smells really good":

Crumble over 2nd layer
Put dessert into oven and feel very proud of yourself that you remembered to set the timer :)
Wash mixer bowl, again:

Put kids to bed while dessert bakes.
Take it out of the oven and take a picture of it because it looks and smells SO good.

Sit down to write your totally awesome blog post.
While you're typing the part of the recipe that gives directions for substitutions for pumpkin pie mix, get the empty pumpkin can from the kitchen only to realize that you grabbed the wrong can and used pure pumpkin when you thought you had used pumpkin pie mix:


Feel very sad that after all your efforts to make a delicious pumpkin dessert, even though it looks amazing, and smells incredible, it is going to taste like poo because you used the wrong can, even though you know better!
Eat Halloween candy to compensate for your loss.
Feel a glimmer of hope when you remember that at least you saved the rest of the evaporated milk, so if you decide to try again tomorrow, at least you won't have to go back to the grocery store.