Friday, April 25, 2008

Backpack, Backpack

You know you're a mom if you are singing the Dora the Explorer song in your head right now because of this title.

Way back in October my husband's work called me and said that they wanted to have a surprise baby shower for him and could I make it to the party. He was a little annoyed because he had a lot of stuff to do and they kept bugging him about coming to some luncheon, until I showed up and he found out it was really a luncheon and baby shower for him. He wasn't annoyed anymore after that :) They wanted to do something more for him as a dad so they got him this really cool backpack that the baby goes in. Devyn is so nonchalant that she just goes with the flow. She was just chillin in the backpack as we took Dante out on a walk.

I have been trying for some time to capture Devyn's total admiration for Ari in a picture. She idolizes Ari. Devyn does not smile easily. She's a good baby and perfectly content, but she doesn't tend to smile for just anyone, but Ari can always make her smile. She has this look of complete admiration that she gets when Ari walks into a room. Well Ken bent down to pet the dog while Devyn was in the backpack and she caught sight of Ari and just smiled and laughed and looked at her with that look of awe in her eyes. Boy does Ari have a big job ahead of her being a good example for her little sister who obviously thinks she can do no wrong.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


I know it’s a little cliché to complain about the price of gas, but seriously, $2.85 a gallon for regular unleaded is a bit much I think! It’s getting ridiculous. Who can afford this? Are you changing your driving habits because of fuel prices? We sure are. We consolidate our trips and plan out where we need to be and when in order to keep the trips to the gas station to a minimum.

Oh, and I must be getting old if I’m complaining about the price of fuel!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

When it Rains it Pours…

That is oh so true for so many aspects of my life and should therefore probably be the title of my blog, but it’s not it’s the title of this post instead. For now it is referring to my lack of posting for so long and then posting multiple times in one day. I do this often because I have so many things I want to blog about so when I get a minute and start blogging all those things come to my mind.

This is just a random post so I can unscrupulously post pictures of my baby. Devyn is getting better and better at sitting up by herself. On Sunday she was wearing Ari’s first Easter dress and we wanted to get a picture of her for comparison (note to self, find old pictures of Ari wearing the same dress). We had her sitting up and she was doing such a good job (as she was trying to reach for the camera) and then after a while she just toppled over. Not much fazes her though and she was perfectly content on her back after her fall.

Best Game Ever!

Have you ever seen Sponge Bob Square Pants? DH and Ari are both huge fans of the show and therefore Sponge Bob has a prominent place in our lives. When Devyn was only a few weeks old DH coined the term "square head stinky pants" for her because of her big square head, and yes she takes after me in that respect, the square head, not the stiny pants part. Sponge Bob also sings a song that has a chorus that is impossible to get out of your head. The song is called “It’s the best day ever” and I’m included a YouTube video of it for your viewing and listening pleasure.

However, this post is not about Sponge Bob or Devyn’s big square head (sorry sweetie), but about Ari and the best soccer game of her entire life that she had last Friday night. That song started playing in my head when I was thinking about this post, hence the title, so I had to share the previous information for those of you not lucky enough to be forced to endure Sponge Bob! As you listen to the song insert “it’s my best game ever” where he says “it’s the best day ever” and you will be right there inside my head thinking what I’m thinking. So now onto soccer…

As I have mentioned before Ari loves to play soccer, but more for the social aspect then for the game itself. She’s not a huge fan of running up and down the field so when the coach asks who wants to be goalie Ari always volunteers, and surprisingly enough not that many other kids want to be goalie so she always gets to be goalie for at least a quarter of the game. DH and I are always a little concerned when she wants to be goalie because she’s also a little afraid of balls flying at her and as goalie you’re supposed to stop those balls, not run in the opposite direction. Well, on Friday, in Ari’s usual fashion she once again volunteered to be goalie and was up first. The other team had an amazing offense and spent a significant time close to our goal, not good for Ari who doesn’t really want to stop the ball. Well the ball came flying at her and she ended up stopping it with her eye! Luckily she didn’t get a black eye, although I told her that was too bad because at least she’d have something cool to show when she told the story, but I digress. She ended up coming out of the game at that point and DH and I just thought, well this may be the last time she volunteers for goalie, but nope. At the next quarter her coach asked if she was ready to go back in and did she want to be goalie? Yep! So out she went. We were so proud of her for getting right back up on that horse but waited with anticipation to see if she would shy away from the ball at that point. Nope, not one bit. She had not less than 14 saves and did an amazing job. The other team actually won the game, but it wasn’t because Ari wasn’t doing her part. Her defenders were nowhere near for the majority of those saves so she did it all on her own. I was kicking myself for not having the video camera that day! We took her out for ice cream that night to let her know how proud we were that she was willing to get back in there after getting hurt and for doing such a good job. So congrats Ari on your Best Game Ever!

Ari with her game face on :)

One of her saves.

The other team getting close to the goal.

Friday, April 18, 2008

A little bit of Ari

The other night as we sat down to dinner Ari asked “why don’t you guys ever ask me any questions?” We were a little perplexed by this because we do ask her questions everyday like “what did you do today” or “how was your day” to which she usually responds with answers like “nothing” or “fine”. So on this particular night we started asking her those types of questions and that was not what she was looking for. We asked “well, what kind of questions do you want us to ask?” “Just questions” was her response. Not knowing what she was looking for from us at that moment DH and I just started asking a bunch of random questions and she was answering them so I grabbed a pencil and started writing them down on my napkin. (Crazy I know, but I couldn’t be bothered to get a piece of paper.)I thought it would be nice to have a record of some of Ari’s favorite things at this age and since she was so willingly answering here there are.

Favorite Food:
Taco Soup
Cheeseburgers and fries

Favorite Drink:

Favorite Cereal:
Captain Crunch
Golden Puffs

Favorite Snack:

Favorite Dessert:
Vanilla Ice Cream and Brownies
Chocolate Carmel Crunch Cake (better known to most people as Better than Sex cake but we renamed it when she was little!)

If you could travel to 1 place where would it be?
Kenya, because of their wildlife parks.

What do you want to be when you grow up?
“You already know the answer to that one mom, a Veterinarian!”

Favorite Movie:
Remember the Titans or Radio

Favorite Book:
Harry Potter Series

Favorite Band:
Plain White T’s


Favorite Hobby:

Favorite Color:
Light Blue
Lime Green
(I guess she doesn’t really have a favorite after all)

Favorite TV show:
Animal Cops
Suite Life of Zack and Cody
Dirty Jobs

Favorite Subject in school:
Math…it used to be science but science isn’t fun anymore

Favorite Flower:
Roses because they’ve got pokey things that hurt people
(nice attitude huh?)

Favorite Animal:

We still don't know what she was going for when she asked why we didn't ask her questions, but this seemed to satisfy her and now we know a little bit more about Ari.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

School Projects

Ari had a huge project due on something that had to do with California since they study California history in 4th grade. It was kind of a challenge to get started on this project as Ari wanted to just do a posterboard with brochures for a bunch of different famous sites in California. Finally after all of us going in and talking to her teacher she decided to focus on Monterey Bay Aquarium (probably because we had just visited there).

They had to have their projects done by today and no late work was accepted. It was the school open house and the projects were to be on display so if they were late they weren't graded, harsh, but a good reality I think. I'm pretty sure they all got them in on time though.

I am a big believer in letting the child do their own work, therefore Ari's project isn't as elaborate as some, but she put in a good effort and I think she did a really good job. I especially like her diarama as she did it without any encouragement or suggestion on what fish to make or how to make them.

These are a few of the other projects that I got pictures of:

They also had artwork on display in the gym. Ari's class had a professional artist come in and work with them on these pictures and she was pointing out to me that her cupcakes looked "just like" the professional artist's the second picture) :)

Monday, April 14, 2008

Value of a dollar

Grandma and Grandpa sent Ari this cute purse with the $20 dollar bill inside it that had a note attached that said “for a top at your favorite store.”

Now that the weather is warming up Ari has been needing some new outfits because a lot of her clothes from last fall are starting to get a little small (I very lovingly refer to them as hoochy momma clothes, you know the kind you see on plenty of girls that should not be wearing such tight, short things, DH doesn’t think that’s very appropriate term however). But I digress, so she needed some new clothes, and with DH still out of a job, this gift from Grandma and Grandpa couldn’t have come at a better time.

Ari does not like to shop (she takes after me in this way), but she was excited to have money of her own to spend, so she asked if we could go on a shopping spree on Saturday. Ari added $20 of her savings and then I gave her $10 allowance, so she had a total of $50 to spend. Now as I’ve mentioned before Ari loves the clothes at Justice, but I suggested to her that we could look there along with a few other stores like Old Navy because Justice is kind of pricey. She agreed, so we went to Old Navy first and she was realizing that with shorts being $19.50 a pair her $50 wasn’t going to go far. Then she started looking at shirts and they were $10.50 each. When she saw this she decided she didn’t even want to go and look at Justice because their clothes are even more expensive. I steered her toward the clearance table and she found a few shirts she liked from there and they were only $4.99. Once she saw that she was appalled at the $10.50 price of the other shirts and said “this is one of the expensive one’s Mom.” I explained that $10.50 was not bad for a shirt, but wasn’t it so much better to get two shirts for that price rather than just one? She ended up getting one pair of shorts and four shirts, three from the clearance table. I bought her another pair of shorts and one more shirt. She really learned the value of a dollar and came home with some very cute things. Thanks Grandma and Grandpa for giving her the money that started this wonderful learning experience.

Here she is before school today in one of her new outfits (did I mention she’s somewhat of a tomboy?)

Friday, April 11, 2008

I feel horrible!

Please tell me you’ve inadvertently done something that caused your child harm!

This morning I was holding Devyn while I was trying to get ready for work because DH had taken Dante out for a walk, and she was not wanting to be put down. So I had my arm around her waist and she was standing on the counter facing the mirror and she started bouncing around and she kicked my flat-iron off the counter. The flat iron was ON! She now has a burn across the top of her foot and I feel horrible. We even took her into Dr. Vallero’s office (who is the best pediatrician in the world by the way), just to have it checked out. Dr. Vallero said it looks fine and to just give her some Tylenol or Motrin for pain, but she did give us a prescription for a burn cream in case it gets worse.

I just sat down and cried when I saw what it had done to her. I know things like this happen, but that doesn’t really make me feel any better. So go ahead and share, let me know I’m not the only one!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Mean Mom!

My Mom sent me an email today that totally resonated with me (see below).

Last night Ari was complaining on the phone to my mom that because I was mean and wouldn’t change her bedtime she couldn’t stay up late enough to watch American Idol. This subject has been a source of ongoing turmoil because everyone else she knows has a later bedtime then her. This may well be true, but Ari is like me (I need my sleep) and is horribly grouchy and just plain can not function properly when she doesn’t get enough sleep. She came to me about a month ago with a note that said something like “sign here if you love me enough to change my bedtime to 9:00” with two signature lines, one for me and one for DH. After I finished laughing, I wrote my own note on the back stating that if she made it to bed on time for 6 weeks straight (getting to bed on time is also a problem so why bother changing her bedtime when she rarely makes it to bed by that time anyway) then maybe we would change her bedtime. Both DH and I signed the reverse side of the note, but that wasn’t good enough so that tabled the discussion for a while. That is until she wanted to watch American Idol last night and decided that yet again I was a mean mom.

Then this morning she again was complaining that all the other kids got to do stuff without their parents except for her. Trying to get to the root of the problem I asked her what kinds of things they were allowed to do without their parents. She listed off things like going to the local skating rink, hanging out at the skateboarding park after school and “I don’t know, just everything.” Well, the local skating rink has two open skate times a week, Friday nights at 7 p.m. and Sunday afternoons. Since we don’t allow her to do activities like that on Sunday, that leaves Friday night and there are a lot of “older” kids that hang out there at that time. We do let her go and we always let her bring a friend, but we also always stay so we can keep an eye on what’s going on. Of the friends that she has invited each of their parents have been leery about even letting them go until we tell them that we stay the whole time and then they are ok with it. Obviously we aren’t the only ones that are concerned.

As for the skate park it’s not far from our house and we have walked past it many times. There never fails to be all kinds of activities going on that I wouldn’t want my high school student around including kids smoking pot when they don’t think anyone can see, let alone my nine year old. The skate park shares a fence with the dog park where we often take Dante to play, and let me tell you they aren’t hiding anything from anyone, but this is not a place I want my nine year old hanging out, period. So, yes I guess I am a mean mom, but someday if she makes it to adulthood in one piece I hope she’ll thank me for being so mean.

(Plus, with a daughter this cute I should be worried!)

I know that I am a cautious parent, but unfortunately in today’s society I think you have to be. There were so many things that I did as a child that I wouldn’t even consider letting my child do. Simple things like walking a few blocks away to a friend’s house, or riding my bike a couple of miles to swimming lessons. As she has gotten older there are more and more things I let her do because she does need increased independence as she grows up, but I will never be able to allow her to have the same independence I had for the mere fact that society is a scary place these days. I love her and if it takes being a mean mom to keep her healthy and safe then I’m all about being a mean mom. How about you?

Mean Moms

Someday when my children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates a parent, I will tell them, as my Mean Mom told me: I loved you enough to ask where you were going, with whom, and what time you would be home. I loved you enough to be silent and let you discover that your new best friend was a creep. I loved you enough to stand over you for two hours while you cleaned your room, a jobthat should have taken 15 minutes.

I loved you enough to let you see anger, disappointment, and tears in my eyes. Children must learn that their parents aren't perfect. I loved you enough to let you assume the responsibility for your actions even when the penalties were so harsh they almost broke my heart.But most of all, I loved you enough to say NO when I knew you would hate me for it.Those were the most difficult battles of all. I'm glad I won them, because in the end you won, too.And someday when your children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates parents, you will tell them. Was your Mom mean? I know mine was.We had the meanest mother in the whole world! While other kids ate candy for breakfast,we had to have cereal, eggs, and toast. When others had a Pepsi and a Twinkie for lunch,we had to eat sandwiches. And you can guess our mother fixed us a dinner that was different from what other kids had, too.Mother insisted on knowing where we were at all times. You'd think we were convicts in a prison. She had to know who our friends were and what we were doing with them. She insisted that if we said we would be gone for an hour, we would be gone for an hour or less.We were ashamed to admit it, but she had the nerve to break the Child Labor Laws by making us work.We had to wash the dishes, make the beds, learn to cook, vacuum the floor, do laundry,empty the trash and all sorts of cruel jobs. I think she would lie awake at night thinking of more things for us to do.She always insisted on us telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. By the time we were teenagers; she could read our minds and had eyes in the back of her head. Then, life was really tough!Mother wouldn't let our friends just honk the horn when they drove up. They had to come up to the door so she could meet them. While everyone else could date when they were 12 or 13, we had to wait until we were 16.

Because of our mother we missed out on lots of things other kids experienced. None of us have ever been caught shoplifting, vandalizing other's property or ever arrested for any crime.It was all her fault. Now that we have left home, we are all educated, honest adults. We are doing our best to be mean parents just like Mom was. I think that is what's wrong with the world today. It just doesn't have enough mean moms!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


Ok, so we’re driving in the car for a 13 hour car ride back at Christmas time. We have a 7 week old baby at the time, I’m extremely tired and to top it all off I have a husband that likes to make fun of me. Not in a mean vindictive sort of way, but he likes to none the less. We are having some conversation and I use the phrase “faunching at the bit” and my husband is like “what did you just say?” I repeat myself and as he’s laughing he says you mean “chomping at the bit?” No, “faunching” I say though I’m starting to laugh and have a hard time getting it out. When I get really tired, hence the 13 hour car ride and 6 week old baby information, I get really giddy and laugh uncontrollably at some really stupid things. We are both laughing hysterically, he tells me I’m delusional and that there is no such phrase. We end up calling my Mom as soon as we get to an area with cell phone coverage because I know this is a phrase I grew up with. She indeed says it’s a phrase, but she and my two sisters can not come up with proof in the dictionary, the whole time my husband has this “I told you so” look on his face about the whole thing and it has since been a topic of lighthearted ridicule. So the other day I decided to try and do a little research (since that is my profession and all) and found this online Urban Dictionary (be careful what you look up here though, urban is right!). It says:

1. faunch
Faunch: verb, meaning to rage and storm, to fight against fate. "Faunching at the bit" implies waiting in nervous agitation and impatience, like a wild horse that is fighting against a harness. Probably derives from Irish "fonn taodach" - to quote Daniel Cassidy's book, "How the Irish Invented Slang" (p.139) "an impulsive frame of mind, jittery excitation, a fierce humor", taodach meaning "excited, fidgety, quick-tempered." (Cassidy's entry was not defining "faunch", but "fantod." I made the leap myself.
I was faunching at the bit to drive my uncle's new Mustang.

So dear readers, faunching may not be in your standard dictionary but this is good enough for me. I will now be “faunching at the bit” to let my husband know I’m not really an idiot!

Have you ever thought about where some of the phrases you use come from? Here are a few that I’ve wondered about and decided to look up:

Happy as a clamseriously how does one know that a clam is happy?
Close, but no cigarif I get any closer do I have to have a cagar?
Speak of the Devilhopefully no devil’s are appearing around here!
There’s more than one way to skin a catthis one was tricky, there doesn’t seem to be a consensus on it’s origins, but this is the best I could find!

This was actually kind of fun finding out where some common phrases come from. So what are some phrases you use?

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

More backdates...

For those interested I've added a couple more backdated posts from the week of March 24th through the 29th. As I said from the beginning, this blog is for me, and it's much easier for me to keep track of when we did things if I back date them, so you as a reader might not even know they are there. So, if you care, they are there and if not, they are there for me :)

It's Soccer Time!

Ari had her first spring soccer game last Friday night. She played goalie the entire time she was in.

These aren’t the greatest pictures, but I have a couple really good ones from last fall, so I’ll have to find those and post them here later. She’s not one of those kids that has a passion for the game, but she likes it so we keep signing her up. We feel that if nothing else she’s learning sportsmanship and she’s getting physical exercise. She has been playing soccer for 5 years now I think, the longest she’s stuck with anything. She’s done gymnastics, ballet, jazz, tap, ice skating, piano and viola but soccer is the one thing she’s stayed with. She would have loved to continue with ice skating but since we moved to Davis the closest rink is pretty far away and we don’t want to drive that much. We also stopped piano lessons at that time because they are 4 times as expensive as they were in Logan and we just can’t afford that. She is currently in viola, but she’s asked many times to quit so she probably won’t do that anymore after this year either. Not to mention, the California schools are in a huge budget crisis. In our small district alone they handed out pink slips to 90 teachers and support staff for next school year which includes all the music teachers at least at the elementary level. The schools here in Davis are very well known for their high quality of education so it’s a little concerning that they are going to have to cut so many jobs. A few years ago a school foundation was set up to raise funds for the schools and they had a fundraising drive a couple of weeks ago at all the schools to try and “buy back” some of those positions. In one day at Ari’s school alone they raised $70,000. Pretty impressive if you ask me, but unfortunately I’m sure it’s still not enough.

Anyway, back to Ari and her activities. We won’t let her quit things in the middle of a season, greatly to her dismay with viola because all of her friends have dropped out. I feel it’s important for her to learn to stick with things, I hope it builds character not resentment! So what do you think? Is it better to find one or two things for your child and make them stick with them or let them try out a bunch of different things to find out where their passions lie?

Friday, April 4, 2008

Have you heard?

Apparently Snoop Dogg has converted to Mormonism!

DIAMOND BAR, California (AP) — In what some may consider an unexpected move, rap artist “Snoop Dogg” has reportedly converted to Mormonism after nearly a year of study with the fast-growing, Utah-based faith.

Snoop Dogg says he “can’t get enough of the Book of Mormon.”

In a statement, a spokeswoman for Snoop Dogg — whose real name is Calvin Broadus — said he considers himself extremely fortunate to have discovered such a deep sense of spiritual fulfillment at this stage in his life.

“Mr. Broadus is also very pleased to find that his family is as enthusiastic about attending church services as he is,” the spokeswoman said.

However, Snoop Dogg has not been enthusiastic about publicly sharing his experience and declined to be interviewed by CNN for this article. In fact, he reportedly informed producers of his E! reality show “Snoop Dogg’s Father Hood” that this particular aspect of his family’s life was off-limits to the cameras. Still, he left open the possibility of addressing the subject in future episodes.

According to the Associated Press, Snoop Dogg was first introduced to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as the Mormon Church is officially known, after attending a Gladys Knight concert in an LDS meeting house in Los Angeles.

Knight, who very publicly discusses her conversion to Mormonism several years ago, invited Snoop Dogg to what is known to the Mormon faithful as “Family Home Evening,” a church program that encourages families to set aside Monday evenings for gospel-centered lessons and family togetherness.

Though Snoop Dogg has been hesitant to publicly discuss his recent spiritual journey, he commented on the experience of attending his first “Family Home Evening” in a recent interview with People Magazine.

“I was hooked from the start,” Snoop Dogg said. “We talked about the purpose of life, played Mousetrap, and ate brownies. The kids thought it was off the hook, for real.”

In what Snoop Dogg now thinks was anything but a coincidence, Mormon missionaries had knocked on his door just one week before the Knight concert. He said he had initially turned them away because of what he knew about the strict Mormon health code, which prohibits members from smoking, drinking alcohol, and using drugs.

“Y’all know me,” he said grinning broadly. “There were just certain things the old me — the “natural man” — needed to do. And these young guys are telling me that God’s not down with disrespecting ourselves. But it’s cool now.”

Snoop Dogg said his conversion marks the end of his old life, one that included frequent run-ins with the law. Snoop Dogg was convicted in 1990 of cocaine possession and charged with gun possession after a 1993 traffic stop. In 1997, he pleaded guilty in exchange for a lighter sentence.

In 1996, Snoop Dogg was acquitted of murder after a purported gangbanger was killed by gunfire from the vehicle in which Snoop Dogg was traveling.

Snoop Dogg dismisses critics who claim his conversion is intended to placate a Salt Lake County judge, before whom he is appealing an alleged probation violation.

“Listen, the haters will say what they will,” Snoop Dogg said. “I can only do what I feel is right.”

Ok, not really, apparently it was an elaborate April Fools Day hoax, but I thought it was funny! And really well done.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

5 months old

Devyn is 5 months old today so I thought I'd just share a few fun pictures.

These bathtime pictures are from back in February, but they are just too cute not to share. The bathroom was a little steamy so the pictures are a little foggy, oh well. Devyn loves to kick and play in the tub, but she's not liking leaning back anymore because she wants to sit up.

Devyn can't not have something in her mouth.

If Devyn doesn't have anything else to put in her mouth she just uses her hand!

We got her this cute little bunting outfit to keep her warm in the winter but never used it because she was always in her carrier and covered with a blanket when we were outside. Easter morning was the only time she's worn it because it was a little chilly that morning before it warmed up for the day.

Just some cute shots of her playing on the changing table.