Thursday, July 31, 2008


It has not been a good day. My sister Bekah had thyroid surgery where she lives and I've been worried about her all day. She's going to hate that I've mentioned this but I just can't stop thinking of her. My Aunt Carole flew to be with her and called me with updates, saying it went fine and she's fine. Bekah called me too and she sounded upbeat. But you know, I wish I was there. My excuses are that I have a nursing baby and few vacation days at work, but I wish I'd figured something out.

Other things have been awful today. My baby Ben fell off a bed and banged his nose up (he looks like Rudolph). Max has a bad cold (he also looks like Rudolph) and did not nap for the third day in a row, meaning I did not nap very well. JB was in St George, and my parents and siblings are driving across the country as I type this. My dad was transferred back to Missouri so that's where they are moving.

I've been worried about Bekah, Ben, Max, JB and my family. I just have the worst imagination that jumps to awful scenarios. That's not the way to live, so tonight I'm shaking off those doldrums by tucking the boys in early, eating some chocolate ice cream, cuddling under a quilt, watching "Last Comic Standing" and going to bed early. It's already helping.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


We've been to Lagoon twice this month (JB's dad works there and gives us the great hookups). Max is now tall enough to start branching out onto other rides besides the kiddyland, although he still has his favorites there. And he's still a little scared of some -- they stopped the Dragonfly and had him get off because he was hollering "I don't want to, I don't want to!" But here he is riding the Odesea with JB.
He loved Rattlesnake Rapids, but thought we were saying Rabbit instead of Rapids so he asked the second time we went to Lagoon to go on the Rabbit Ride and it took me a while to figure it out.
We floated down the Lazy River at LagoonA Beach. Max is clinging to JB. He hated the waterslides, and it took some coaxing to get him into the shallow water. He is my child after all.

Ben's first train ride, being held by Uncle Bart. My friends Natalie and Meredith made that shirt for Max and I love it.
There are animals you see while you ride the train, including elk and some tiny breed in the deer family. Max was awestruck by the "big deer" but still talks about the "baby deer" we saw. Never mind that the tiger roared at us or that the bear showed its big claws. My son was enthralled by the deer.

Monday, July 28, 2008

More birthday pics

Here's a picture of the picture of JB and me when I turned 24 -- our first birthday of mine we had together.
Here's JB and me in the same spot, in his parents' kitchen, on my 29th birthday last week. He does the buzz-thing now, but sometimes I think that curly hair ought to come back....
My brother Joe did this when I wasn't looking at Max's birthday BBQ yesterday. I'm not sure if Nathanael's mom was looking either. He says the boys liked it. Hmmmm. I do like how Ben's binkie stayed attached.

By the way Ben at 7 months is the size of Nathanael, 15 months. He's my big boy!

Max's birthday

Hard to believe three years ago our little guy came into the world. The first thing the nurse said was "look at those lips!" Then they all guessed how much he'd weigh -- I was due August 11th but an ultrasound at 37 weeks estimated he was already 9 pounds 3 ounces. So I was induced July 26 and he was born about 1 AM on the 27th. He weighed 8 pounds 4 ounces. So much for my worries he'd be huge!

He got one of his presents early, from our neighbors, and slept with it at naptime and that night --a cash register their kids used to play with.
Here he is blowing out his candle. I made the cake (from a box) and frosting (from scratch). I want to take a cake deocrating class someday, but I think it turned out OK.
Aunt Suzanne gave him a t-ball set and helped him try it out.
He loved his new suitcase. My funny boy had been asking for one for months. Nona found one with his name on it! His cousin Nathanael is on the scooter behind him.
JB's smoker is behind Nathanael. He made smoked pulled pork for dinner. Yumscrumpilicious. Ben liked gnawing this corn cob.
Max I think was a little overwhelmed by the end of the day and slept quite soundly. But I think he had a nice day!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Birthday Fun

Me with my cakes last night.

It's been a really fun day. All at once I had some fun deliveries when I got home from work. My friend Autumn stopped by with a present -- some yummy-looking dark chocolate sauce. Then the FedEx man dropped off a chilled box (complete with ice packs) of chocolate from my sister Bekah.Then JB's mom and sister came by with some Kentucky Fried Chicken. Such a yummy lunch. I really do love chicken and chocolate. Max does too. When JB came home from work we took the boys to their cousin Emily's house to play and went to the Dodo for dinner. He spoiled me with some nice jewelry, swimwear and spa-stuff with which to pamper my tired feet.

I've always had nice birthdays. Sure on my 16th birthday I failed my driver's test, but I'll always remember going out to eat with my mom and dad. Just me and them. I remember a Barbie cake my mom made when I was 6 or 7, and a clown cake when I was even younger. My 15th birthday I went to see The Lion King with my friend Sarah. My sister Bekah always took good care of me on my birthdays in college. I loved the surprise she arranged for me on my 21st birthday. She walked me all over town while my roommates Meredith, Alicia and others decorated the apartment and made chicken and cake. My 24th birthday came while JB and I were dating and he made me a raspberry filled layer cake that slid a little. We have the picture in our living room. Three years ago today we also had KFC (I really do love chicken) and I was filled with anticipation for being induced the next day with Max. He took his time, so that's why his birthday is the 27th. Now on to preparing his special day!


Today is my birthday. But according to my toddler, it's that bump in the road on the way to his birthday. Max turns three on Sunday and we've been talking to him about it. But when we mentioned something about my birthday and he yelled, "No, it's MY birthday!"

Last night we had some cake and ice cream for my bday with JB's family after a Pioneer Day BBQ. Then later, while JB was helping Max with his prayers at bedtime, he prompted Max to say, "Help Mommy have a nice birthday tomorrow." Max instead prayed, "She had her birthday at Nona's and now it's my turn." !
PS The picture above is from Cakes de Fleur, where JB got a carrot cake and chocolate cake for me. Sooooo goooooooood.
PPS I am 29 today. Or as I call it, the fast track to 30.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Car Woes

I got off the air this morning after the show was over and called JB like normal to see how they were all doing. He was at the tire store-center-place. On the way to Nona's house, they got a flat tire! My big stud changed it there on the side of the road. Max could watch from his car seat and thought it was pretty cool. I would have panicked, called JB, called my dad, all of my brothers, my older sister (I don't care if they are in other citites and states) and Triple-A in tears: "What do I do? Help me!" I really have to learn how to handle a situation like that. By the way that's not a picture of it, but I figure a picture spices up a blog post. Thank you Google.

This caps a week of car fixin'. We had our brake pads replaced on both our Subarus. But I love having our cars. They are an 03 and 05. My first car was a 91 Volvo, and one of my favorite memories now (scary at the time) was when I was driving in the rain at night with my friend Autumn and the windshield wipers started going haywire. They ended up crossing in the middle. She hung out the window and uncrossed them. I sold that car to a mechanic who works nearby, and I often see it, still with my BYU Alumni license plate holder on the back.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Always learning

Things I learned today:

1)Never leave a computer on around a toddler, and when you hear "Look what I did mommy!" in a proud voice, come running. Max has now reconfigured Microsoft Word. I can still use it, but it's different.

2)When you get to work at 4 AM, put food in the fridge directly, marked clearly with your name. Honestly, it's like I'm in college again. Warm yogurt =hungry Mary =sad Mary. Missing yogurt also does the same thing.

3)A toddler thinks it's funny to be chased around the yard when you know he's hiding behind that bush to do some "business" and he should be doing it on the potty. A toddler also thinks it's funny to be chased around the house naked when he's supposed to be finishing his business on the potty.

4)If you hear the toilet flush and then the words "Uh oh," it's already too late.

5)I can read "Duck On a Bike," "A Zoo for Mister Muster" and "Green Eggs and Ham" with my eyes closed.

6)My shows this summer can be put into two categories: a cooking show, and a dancing show. Good thing the Rocky Mountain Revue is on TV for Max to get some basketball action.

6)A 7 month-old baby will sense your presence in the room and wake up every time you go to check and see if he's sleeping. Every time. I don't care how cute it is to see that sleeping bum in the air or those chubby thighs in that onesie, he will wake up and stare at you, then promptly cry.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Water, water

Water to our whole street was turned off suddenly, with no warning yesterday. The hydrant at the end had a leak, and they came to fix it in the afternoon. But they didn't tell us. Still mad about that.
The outage lasted probably about 5 hours. We had some old acquaintances over for dinner, too. Here we are, trying to make them comfortable and we had no, ahem, facilites available. Cooking wasn't too bad b/c we were grilling, but washing hands, going to the bathroom, drinking, the air conditioning, bathtime -- all affected. Thankfully the water came back on in time to get ready for bed. It felt weird pouring Evian water into the toilet tank.
I felt like I was in another country. This is America people, we need our water! It's scary to think if something like that happened for a longer time period. We have lots of large and small bottles of water stored in the basement, but this taught me we need so much more.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My eyebrows

Permit me a moment of self-indulgence here. I need some advice about my eyebrows. They are quite blonde, and I've colored them for years with a pencil. But I noticed with a shock last night in the mirror that I'm getting rather careless with the pencil. Sometimes I'm in such a hurry, it looks like I've drawn a line above my eyes. I hate this look on other people, now I'm sporting it myself! I demanded JB's opinion -- "Do you think my eyebrows look like a slim line?" He said, "I always thought you were going for that look." Ahhhh!

Me without the eyebrow enhancement:
Me with the eyebrows penciled on:
I've tried powder and an eyebrow brush, but it seems to wear off by the end of the day, leaving splotchy/spotty eyebrows. What do you think? Anyone out there have a similar problem?

Monday, July 14, 2008

On My Mind

1)It's my dear friend Autumn's birthday. For her birthday, I wish her good painting karma.

2)My sister Bekah. Good thing for texts, emails and phone calls. How did they communicate in olden times when separated by a few states? The "days of yore" must also have been hard.

2)I hold my 20-pound 7-month-old too much on my right hip. I think that bicep is now twice the size of the other one, and my hip has become a jutting out shelf. At dinner last night: "Please pass the veggies. Just set them on my hip." Who am I kidding, I never ask for veggies.

3)Max is doing well in his big boy underwear. He kept Snoopy and Shrek dry all weekend, with the exception of, to put it gently, some stronger stuff. He hid to do that business. Over two days that little bladder went in our upstairs and downstairs toilets, grandparents front and hallway toilets, the up and downstairs church bathrooms, the Gateway bathroom (and I'm pretty sure the Gateway fountains but I can't prove it) and a tree by our car parked near the Farmer's Market (it was an emergency).

4)I love JB's new salsa experimenting. I can't wait for our tomatoes to really flourish!

5)Chicken and chocolate. I can picture exactly in my cupboard where I put two chocolate candy bars on Saturday after finding them on sale at the store. I thought, "I'll put them here and find them some day and have a nice surprise." No, I'm never going to forget and suddenly be surprised by them. I'm going to eat them as soon as I get home! Chicken is on my mind b/c our staff mtg is being catered by El Pollo Loco. Hey, I'll eat even crazy chicken.

6)I miss The Office. But, good news -- there are webisodes this summer that are hilarious. Here's the first one.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Minutes from naptime

People ask how I survive working as an early-morning radio reporter with two children. The answer: naptime. But today everything went wrong, wrong, wrong.

I usually put Max down around 1 and he sleeps until 3. I tuck Ben in bed with me, and he nurses and falls asleep. But lately he’s been so squirmy and wiggly I can’t stand it. I’ll drift off to sleep and wake up with a baby bum or foot in my face. So today I thought I could put Ben in his crib at the same time as Max napped. Again, wrong, wrong, wrong.

1:00. Ben in bed. He’s fussing it out a little but drifting off.

1:10 Max changed and tucked in bed.

1:11 I jump in my bed.

1:12 Max hollers out to me to cover him up. It wakes Ben up.

1:13 Binkie in Ben’s mouth, Max covered up.

1:30 I hear a suspicious noise. I peek in. Max is INSIDE THE CRIB with Ben.

1:30 ½ I rush Max back into his bed, and put Ben’s binkie back in. I remove the diaper boxes by the side of the crib that Max climbed on to get in.

1:40 Ben is still fussing it out. Max hollers at him to “Be quiet Ben, I told you about that!”

1:45 I go in there and ask Max to please be quiet and stop talking to Ben so he can fall asleep.

1:50 I hear the pitter-patter of little feet. I put Max back in his bed, rock Ben and put him back in his crib. I go back to my bed.

2:00 It’s quiet. Good. A peek in the door shows Ben asleep, but Max standing by the bookshelf. I tuck him back in.

2:20 I’ve just drifted off, when I hear a thump and a bump. Not good. Max has pulled the diaper changing pad to the ground and strapped himself on it. “I’m poopy,” he says.

2:30 Max is all changed and tucked back in. Ben still sleeping. I go back to bed.

2:40 Max starts singing. It wakes Ben and me up. I stomp in there and try to get both boys to sleep for just a little bit longer, please!

2:50 I give up. Ben and I go out to the living room but I keep Max in bed for the hope he’ll go to sleep.

3:00 Max hollers out, “I’m awake mommy!” Of course you are.

Garage slippery slope

Our garage door is on the fritz. It's a single-car garage with a manual door that you have to lift up (gotta love these older homes). The door just loves to come off its tracks when I (and now even our nanny) lift it to get to the stroller inside. I have the upper body strength of a kitten, and have to go running to my strong husband to get him to put the door back in place. Last night the door wrestled back, so I helped him. Here's the scene:

JB: Lift up on your side.

Me: Ok

JB: Anytime now.

Me: This is my lift!

JB: Oh.

Meanwhile Max and Ben were waiting nearby our our daily walk. Their waiting became wailing -- Max thought JB and I were in mortal danger and kept screaming "Come out of the garage momma!" Ben wailed because I put him down on the grass and it was tickling him. Plus he couldn't see me and he's in a "I'm 7-months old, I must see mom at all times" stage. I have to tiptoe out of the room with his back turned, or he lays his head down on the floor and cries.

We put the door back and went on our walk, but I just don't know what to do about that door. If you're going to fix a door on an old garage, might as well replace the garage. Might as well then get a two-car garage. Then if we are ripping up stuff anyway, we should replace the driveway concrete as well. Shoot, if we tear down the garage we'll need to rebuild the deck and swingset that are attached to it. Now a little repair has turned into tens of thousands of dollars! Looks like we're stuck with the possessed door.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Our Fourth of July

We started our day with the neighborhood parade, with our new wagon. Ben sat up the whole time, just staring at everything around him. Max too was speechless at the decorated cars, trikes, bikes, wagons, go-carts, strollers and even a few horses.
After lunch we went swimming with friends.
Notice how clinging Max is to me and how with JB he's now in the baby floating device. I think he needs swimming lessons to get over his fear (and mine) of the water. Then we had a BBQ that night with my brothers. Here's Michael, his wife Bethany and their cutie-pie Nathanael.
Here's me and three of my brothers and Nathanael. In family order, from left to right, we are #s 2,3,4 and 5. With a big family, you count off your number whenever traveling. With names left to right we are Mary, Joe, Michael, and James.

Poo Praise

I got a call this morning from JB at an unusual time while I was at work. My heart skipped a beat, thinking something had happened to the boys. Instead, Max jumped on the phone to tell me proudly, "I went poopoo on the potty mommy!" I instantly threw a huge stinkin' praise party. "Yes!" I shouted to the heavens, "He's getting it!" The first time he went on the potty was five months ago but I digress. We are almost there, people -- I can feel it!

Things I'm grateful for about this incident:

1)I was alone in the news car during my praise party

2)My live microphone feed was turned off

3)JB has promised Max an ice cream cone. Maybe there's one in there for me, too.

Incidentally this sounds a lot like a funny episode for Max's little friend Gracie. Read her father's account here.

Monday, July 7, 2008


Several trips to Costco and the grocery store this weekend have shown me I need a tougher spine when it comes to samples. More specifically, the sample-givers. Usually you can hover, take a sample, mumble thanks, then be on your way. But I swear the sample-people are getting more aggressive. "That's on sale today!" "It's right in the case beside me if you want more." "Here's a bag for your cart." "Here, take two!" Instead of moving on with a "No thanks," I feel obliged to explain why I've just stuffed my face with their sample but am not buying the product. My lowest moment -- telling the lady that I believed my husband may have already purchased the ready-made-only-on-special-today-fantastic-in-the-case-beside-me-brats and I had better call him and make sure. I walked away making the fake call on my cell phone and about crashed into the yogurts.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Staying cool

We've found a nice way to cool the Max down after playing outside.
When I was really young my sister Bekah and brother Joe and I would play in buckets of water. I did this last summer with Max, but couldn't find a bucket big enough this week. Instead, I found a storage bin in the garage and filled it with water. Before I could get a swimsuit on him he had stripped down to his birthday suit and hopped in to his new pool. Except I think he thinks it's more of a bathtub. He calls the outdoor faucet a shower, and asked JB yesterday if he could take a shower outside. Brace yourself for another cute picture:Ben didn't like it as much. I took him out to warm up.

Who needs to buy a wading pool, right?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Take me out to the (soft)ballgame

The boys and I didn't get to go to JB's game last night (he won!) and missed a recent game where he hit a home run (I want his autograph) but here are some recent pictures of a softball game.
Ben is trying to reach some of his toys during this shot so I put him down.
Max gets suckers at two places: the doctor's office and softball games. I offered him one at the first game we went to and had him sit next to me and eat it (he wanted to run out onto the field). Now every game he says "Can I have a sucker?"

Here's Number Five. So handsome!