Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Natural Selection

I heard somewhere that Mother Nature makes babies and little kids cute so that their mothers will naturally love them and want to take care of them....thereby perpetuating the species. This phenomenon spans in to photography and record keeping. For some reason my older kids are much less represented in pictures. Maybe it's because I don't have as much time with them. But I'll just say it, the cute factor diminishes as the years progress. Then come the bizarre noises and whooping sounds and scary smells, and we're glad that the bond that was established between parent and child in their cute baby stage saves them in the end. So I sat outside with my cute baby and my four year old (who is on the brink of graduating from this first stage) trying to steal every minute.

Monday, November 12, 2007

I Hope They Call Me on a Mission

For FHE tonight Matt had each boy pick something from their rooms that they would use on a mission. Here were the selections:


Jake will be a missionary under attack and will have need of nunchucks and handcuffs. Let your imagination run wild.


Spencer is concerned about boredom and resting while out trying to harvest souls. The pillow and blanket will help make sure he's comfy while proselyting. The book and the Fun Box that he got from Grammy (full of neat treasures to keep him entertained on trips) will make sure he "has something to do." Really, I think this focus on comfort might win him some surprise converts.


By the time you're 9 the gig is up and the little kid stuff won't work. Zach dutifully displayed his scriptures, and we all agreed that they would be very helpful on a mission. Then he pulled out a pack of tic-tacs and let us know that a successful missionary must have fresh breath. Amen.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Ode to Bookish-ness

Every time I stand at the checkout counter in the libary I get the same feeling I had when I was a little girl: those little bubbles of excitement and thoughts of getting home and ignoring everything else while I dive headfirst into the book bag. Now that I'm older I have other experiences that can compare like: Mommy's about to go shopping, or having time for an afternoon nap, or suddenly remembering there are double chocolate cookies in the freezer that my kids (who are in bed in this daydream of mine) don't know about or....well, that's a pretty good one so I'll leave it at that. Books and I have shared this nerdy little love fest since I was too young to realize that it was Black Beauty instead of Black Cutey. My dad used to read the first sentence from one of its pages and then I would happily recite the rest of the page. I read "Heidi" in kindergarten and afterward would horrifyingly announce this to anyone who would listen. The adult me wants to pick a fight with that snobby little 6-year-old. The point being that I just love a good book! I snuggle into my library nerdiness like a warm blanket whenever I enter that happy building of books. And more, in case you want to hear it: I even like looking up books in the catalog system; I love my little treasure hunt to find them on the shelves; I love that double-chocolate-cookie-in-the-freezer feeling when I find one I've wanted and it gets to come home with me. I love having a big stack of them waiting for me at home or in the car, waiting with their secrets and their dreams and their places I haven't been. (A long time ago Celia enlightened me on the usefulness of a good book for passing the minutes during annoyingly bad traffic which I've been brave enough to try on occasion but only in CA where the traffic warrants it.) I love that a book can beat out a movie anyday, and I really like movies!

So, I made a hurried trip late this afternoon down to my humble little 50s style library. I'm on a quest to find a good one for book club, so I have a little over a week to read these...

1) River of Gold by Victor Villasenor.

Loved it but it's been awhile since I read it, so I'm not sure if it's going to win the honor. It gets points for "earthiness" as Erin called it. Translate: sex and swearing. That wins points with me since, though I seek not after these things, I do seek for a book club that won't lapse into the prudish trap of those from my past. We'll see.....

2) A World Lit Only By Fire by William Manchester.

Can't say enough great things about it. Just need to review the others before making a decision. A great look at the medieval world, Catholic church, etc. Entertaining and reader-friendly even though it sounds dry. A must read.
3) Life is So Good by George Dawson and Richard Glaubman.
Haven't read it, but it's a biography about a man who died at age 103 and started school at age 98.
4) Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza.
About a lady who evaded getting killed in the Rwanda violence and her story. Haven't read it yet.

Lots of books, so little time. I know there are more. I am fighting the urge to add more to the list and I may swap some out for others. But, we wouldn't want scary, neglectful mommy to visit too often. Unfortunately, that means I stay up late. Really late.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Happy, Happy, Happy!!!

Does anyone else suffer from Not-So-Happy-Meal Syndrome? Let me explain.

(Setting: A favorite kid restaurant called M__ D__________'s)

  1. Enter restaurant. Mom orders food for her kids alone - they're already in the play place, scrubbing the floors with their previously-clean socks that will have to be thrown away in ash form, as they will need to be burned first after getting home.

  2. Mom manages to get everything on one tray, drinks unspilled, and to the table and then calls the kids down from the rafters, not really caring that all the other moms are now staring at her and figuring her for a "yeller" - which, of course, she isn't.

  3. The kids all run en masse to the table and immediately start pawing at the tray yelling, "Which one's mine?"

  4. Mom feels compelled to yell FREEZE! but tries to keep a smile on her face and feels like tying tiny hands behind backs so she can satisfy, as this is her job.

  5. Kids start grabbing food and toy out of whatever bag they're holding.

  6. Mom plays musical H___ Meal bag while kids are eating and hopes no one cares that the kid next to them already took a bite out of their cheeseburger even though they ordered nuggets.

  7. Mom's own stomach is growling.

  8. Mom hears: "Can you undo my lid?"

  9. "Where's my BBQ sauce?"

  10. "I wanted honey." [Huh? Who dips the cheeseburger in honey? Did you forget you didn't order nuggets? Nope. Still wanted honey.]
  11. "Um, Mom? I spilled..."
  12. "I need a straaaw. Where are the straws?" The sleuth mom finds them hidden under the napkins.
  13. Mom starts to sweat because holy crap, this is hard work and the pressure is on. She knows the game is over if they are allowed to escape to those colorful tunnels of grime they love so much before at least a portion of their food is consumed.

  14. The kid who didn't want milk, not even chocolate, wants to fill his soda cup all by himself - with every kind of drink that shoots out of the fountain. Will need help as can't reach them by himself in reality.

  15. Mom sure hopes that the baby won't stand up in that sick, sticky high chair and break her head before she gets back.

  16. Mom returns (baby is fine) and quickly slips a napkin under each kid's meal, [the clock is ticking] before the food hits the table, hoping this small gesture saves them from certain food poisoning. Mom doesn't care that they've already been playing for 10 minutes in those tunnels of grime already mentioned. This still might help curb the odds.

  17. Mom's stomach growls again...louder. She helps herself to fries from each kids carefully placed napkin because by now she figures she's earned it.

  18. Mom remembers how smart she was that she stopped off at popular mexican restaurant nearby first for a little Mommy Treat that she won't be sharing with the kids.

  19. Kids eat.

  20. Kids disappear into the colorful tunnels of grime.

  21. Mom eats her yummy treat and reads her really good book she brought along for occasions like these - OR - Mommy eats her yummy treat while having a real conversation with a fun friend who came along with her kids to M___ D______'s.

  22. Now Mom is happy and it was worth it. Will come again soon.