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Showing posts from March, 2014

Worst. Mother. Ever.

The past few days will surely go down as the worst in history when it comes to me being any kind of a caring, compassionate mother, let alone human being!


Sad Days!

Last week, I was doing so well, concentrating my efforts on prayers for Damen, swearing I would be grateful for my own little, minute cross to bear in relationship to the trials those around me have.  I was determined to find joy in this journey, to take it all in stride, one day at a time, give thanks, be happy for today...gosh, the words that cliche into one another are endless with permutations unimaginable!

However, I failed miserably!  Thursday was Shelbie's transfusion.  I had planned to be positive and upbeat and make it a great day.  Instead, I muttered and complained and was so worn out I couldn't get any of my work done and the internet at the hospital wasn't working for most of the day and when it was, it had blocked every single website I needed to get to for work.  Sam and I napped in the m…

For the first time...

For the first time in what feels like forever, but is really only 5 years, I paid all my bills for the month of April with enough left over to buy groceries!  I even made my missionary payment on time which, in and of itself is a major feat!

I decided several months ago, that I really needed to establish some constant, dependable work and then focus on my design business so whatever came in from that was money I could use for Spencer's mission, paying down debt that comes from unemployment and underemployment for 5 years and put some away for our upcoming trip to Seattle.

I have watched my kids, when someone asks them what I do for a living; they stutter and stammer and then tell them they aren't sure, or I'm a janitor or something.  I am sort of embarrassed for them and for me too.  I didn't go to school for 4 years to end up scrubbing toilets and all other manner of evil, dirty things.  I want them to have a mother they can be proud of...but then I thought...

I may n…

Closing a chapter

Apparently, we are in a life cycle of change and you know how much I love change...! Bleh.

Sam got his drivers license yesterday.  I am proud of him for being patient while he drove 'Miss Daisy' around for the past 7 months.  I will admit, it was nice having a chauffeur.  He has done a lot better than I thought he would and I think, he is probably my best driver out of the three.

He inherits the very old Subaru, over 20 years old... that has been sufficiently broken in by two other teen drivers in our family.  Shelbie totaled it in grade 11 and ran it into a dumpster a few weeks after that.  Spencer had his hay day in church parking lots spinning cookies and running into telephone poles and curbs that mashed up the front end...again!

So, now it's Sam's turn to see how he can add his legacy!

When I took him to his dad's to pick up the car to take his test in, I had no idea it was in such rough shape!  Those floor boards!!!  I couldn't stop laughing.  Before l…

How old would you be...

The final question in this 30 day blogging challenge is...

How old would you be if you didn't know how old you were.

Hmmmmm,  I have always, my whole life felt like an 'old soul'.  I always felt older than I was and I even associated with people much older than me.  I have never really had friends my age, even now.

I will be 45 soon, hard to believe!!!  Some days, I still look around at my life, the responsibility I have in providing for my family, raising my kids, being an adult and I think..."Wait just a minute...why am I in charge?  I'm not old enough for all this responsibility!  Who thought this was a good idea?" It's a head trip.

So, if I didn't know how old I really was, I would probably think I was in my early 30's.  I think the 30's are still about growing up, finding your way; maturing.  By 45, it just seems you should have your act together, be established in relationships, in your self with wisdom flowing freely and a substantial 4…

My greatest fear

There is plenty in this world to be scared of but what is my greatest fear?

I really fear the unknown.  It's never been something I am super comfortable with but who is?  My mind is all too powerful in spinning all sorts of terrible things that could happen when things are just open ended and up in the air.

For example...When I got divorced, I was terrified of making it on my own.  I couldn't see any possible way that I could manage alone. I had to buy a house,  buy a car, buy all new furniture and beds...and, enter the workforce and be a mom.  Looking back, I have no idea how I managed to survive and keep three kids alive too but we did it with a lot of help from God.

I don't know why I get so scared.  There has not been one single time that things didn't work out.  They weren't always easy or had the outcome I expected, but they always worked out for the best!

Every time, I vow to be better, to have more faith and less fear.  I start out strong and then the long…


Another blog hijack...I actually can't wait for this 30 day challenge to end just because so much has been going on but didn't want to interrupt my jive.

However...It has been such a week that I wanted to write down my feelings before they were lost with less important things.

Last year, I blogged about getting involved to help my friend Sally with a fundraiser for her son.  He has an autoimmune disease that destroyed his liver once when he was just 19 and it came back and destroyed his new liver he has just had a few short years!  It was sad.

He is married now and has a sweet little family including a precious little girl, around a year old though I'm not sure her exact age.

At any rate, This young man has been fighting for his life.  Autoimmune disease also destroyed his colon so he has had two major problems to deal with!!

Today, he was given a second chance at life with a new liver!

There are no words to describe how affected I have been this week with his story. …

If Happiness was a currency...

The 30 Day challenge continues... just three more days.  I'm not sure I loved this idea sense in quitting now.

So, if Happiness was the National currency, what kind of work would make you rich?

Isn't this a thought provoking question?

Writing makes me pretty happy and so does serving.  I guess if I could spend every day just making people happy and writing, then I would be pretty content and very wealthy.

What about you...What is your currency of happiness?

30 Day Challenge- My Death Row Meal

At first, I thought this was such an odd question.

And, it is an odd question.

But...have you ever noticed that when someone in this country is put to death, media always reports what they had for their last meal?

So, if I ever find myself having to choose my last meal before death, this is how it would look.

Diet Pepsi and Smart Water
Texas Roadhouse ribs
5 Guys little cheeseburger with mustard, ketchup and raw onions
Homemade fries and gravy
Roasted vegetables
Wendy's frosty

AND......Wait for it.....

Thick and chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies!

That's a lot of food!  If I could actually eat all that, I would be comatose and they could save some taxpayer money on the silver treatment!

30 Day Challenge- Something you miss from childhood

I don't miss anything from my childhood except for one thing. Grandma's house.

Visiting both of my grandparents each summer was never really something I got overly excited about mostly because I hated leaving home and my parents but I look back at those trips with a great deal of fondness.

There was nothing better than spending the day with my dad's parents in their beauty supply shop. I will never forget the musty smell of that store with a trailing hint of Clubman Talc.  I remember watching my grandpa stand at the front desk, visiting with customers that would come and go, filling out ledger books, stocking shelves.  My grandma would teach us to macrame plant hangers on the floor of my Grandpa's office or take shampoo towels and magically turn them into dolls for us carry around in an apple box.

Every morning, the menu was the same- Porridge and whole wheat bread that grandma had baked in a tomato juice can.  I can still see the bottle of sugar sweetener my grandpa…

30 day challenge- Song that inspires me

There are two songs that I find inspirational.  Both I discovered during really hard times in my life and they seemed to be the thing that saved me or at least in part, kept me going.

1. A Brand New Day by Sting.

Incidently, this song was not something I had heard during my divorce.  I heard it long before then.  I loved the idea that every day is a brand new day!

2. God Moves in a Mysterious Way.  You can go here
To listen to the music Here are the lyrics.

God moves in a mysterious way, his wonders to perform
He plants his footsteps in the sea and rides upon the storm

Ye fearful Saints, fresh courage take; The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break, in blessings on your head.

His purposes will ripen fast, unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste, but sweet will be the flower.

Blind unbelief is sure to err, and scan his works in vain;
God is his own interpreter, and he will make it plain.

30 Day Challenge- Favorite Movies

Not only am I picky about books, I am also picky about movies.  I refuse to watch Zombie movies, end of the world movies, military movies, most action movies are out unless the kids trick me and I actually end up liking it.  I do not like Sci-Fi but did enjoy the Hunger Games series and I did like Enders Game but Twilight?  No thank you.

Again, I like movies where the main character overcomes something hard.  I love true stories and documentaries and I love historical fiction films.

Here is the short list.

Memoirs of a GeishaSecret Life of BeesLovely BonesThe HelpThe ButlerBoy in the Striped PajamasSarah's KeyThe Book TheifSaving Mr. BanksMy Sister's Keeper I am going to sneak in a bonus film I saw recently- Monuments Men.  Its about a group of men who go to Europe during WWII to find and preserve historical art that Hitler was stealing from churches and museums for his own collection.  I loved it because just a week before, I had been reading an article on how some of the pie…

Favorite Book Titles

I am a picky reader.  I love non-fiction.  I love to be learning about anything really, but when it comes to fiction books, it has to be meaningful or else it leaves me feeling unsatisfied.

I love a memoir, a book that pulls me into the character's life and allows me to struggle with them until we reach the other side.  So, here is my list of all time favorites.

Memoirs of a Geisha- Arthur GoldenRoom- Emma DonoghueLeft to tell- Immaculee IllibagizaThe Giver- Lois LowryThe Help- Kathryn StockettBlackbird- Jennifer LauckThe Red Tent-Anita DiamantThe Book Thief- Markus ZusakSecret Life of Bees-Sue Monk KiddLovely Bones- Alice Sebold

The moment that changed my life

My life has been a series of punctuated moments.  Each one, for good or for bad, changed me.  Each. One.

To me, life happens in moments, not on a continuum of time.  Just one moment...then the next.  I think it changed to this format of time passing the day my kids were diagnosed with Shwachman Diamond Syndrome.  That news seared every horrible emotion on my heart like a brand that will always define me in some way.

In a split second, hardly a conscious thought, I knew that life was fleeting and uncertain and years and years of planning dreams for the future was boiled down, in that instant, to just a moment.  All I knew for sure, was that I had this moment, one moment left with my kids.

A couple of years ago, I saw this poem by Gwendolyn Brooks- Exhaust the little moment.

It was the phrase I had been searching for to explain how my life had changed.
Without a doubt, we have learned to exhaust the moments we have.  We cram a lot of living into one day.  There is hardly a wasted moment…

30 Day Blogging Challenge- My Most Embarrassing Moment

I really should have opted out of this question because I can't say I have had anything real embarrassing, that I can recall.  I have wracked my brain and only come up with a few little quirky things but nothing that was interesting, funny or mortifying.

When I look back at pictures growing up, I was pretty embarrassed by the hairstyles I had.  Gosh...most of them were desperately embarrassing.  Seriously, my kids have friends over just to pull out my old photo albums and laugh at their mom.  It makes me feel special.

I told my beautician last week that this is the first time my hairstyle is actually half way decent and not entirely embarrassing.

I tell you the 70's and 80's were harsh decades but not nearly as bad as the 90's.  Not too sure what was up with that decade- short and big seemed to be the style but I use that term loosely!

I am going to post some of the most priceless hairstyles I had from age 8-12.  You should probably be seated firmly beca…

30 Day Challenge- My Favorite Childhood Photo

Well, here I am.  Age 5.  I have no idea the story behind this picture but...

When I look at her, I think...Oh to be so fierce!  When I look at her, I wonder if she had any idea just how fierce she would really have to be in life.  It's hard to believe that that little girl grew up to be someone who had to chase away the bad guys, the boo boos and the blues.

 I wonder if she knew just how ugly and scary the world would actually end up being and not just at night when everything was quiet but the house that creaked and snored in the dark and frightfully resembled the boogie man.  I wonder if she knew then, how she would chase away the demons of disease and protect her little ones she had yet to even dream of.

I love her smiling innocence and her sweet smile.  I love that I use to be that girl.

30 Day Challenge- One thing I miss about being married

There are so many things I miss about being married and I could obviously come up with a long list and most of them would be obvious so for this post, I am going to choose the less obvious thing that I miss but probably not number one.  This keeps it more interesting.

The very first morning upon waking up in my new home; my new single life, I noticed this one void.  The smell of a man in the morning.

I loved the smell of after shave and cologne wafting through the air.  It was like the smell of being taken care of.  The smell of strength and protection.  The smell of everything being okay in my little world because there was always someone to share the weight of the world with. It was the smell of not being alone.

I bet you weren't expecting that were you?

30 Day Challenge- The first 10 songs on my iPod.

My iPod always plays in shuffle mode.

Here are the first 10 songs that played:

Feeling the Same Way- Norah JonesQuestions- Dustin O'HalloranHuman Nature- Michael JacksonBrand New Day- StingLearn to be Lonely- Phantom of the OperaFor Good- WickedBlessed- Elton JohnCold as Stone- Lady AntebellumDream- Priscilla AhnIn God's Hands- Nelly Furtado A little eclectic...That's the way I like it. 

30 day challenge- If my life had no limits, what would it look like?

If life had no limits and you didn't have to justify paying bills, taking care of kids, family etc.  What would life look like.

It would look simple and I wouldn't be living on this continent.

I would love to live in a place like Holland, Norway, Sweden or Switzerland- just a quiet little country, full of character, in a quiet little town or suburb of a bigger city.  I would love to be surrounded by things that are old.  Things with centuries of secrets to tell! A place that looks like time and technology hasn't marched all over it. I imagine a place where people are friendly and content.  A place where relationships are more important than feeding your ego, climbing some corporate ladder of nonsense and kissing up to everyone just so you can get somewhere in life.  There is something intriguing to going someplace where nobody knows your name. A place where nobody knows your life and have no pre-conceived notions of who you are, what you are.  A place where you can just b…

30 Day Challenge- How I chose my profession

This is a great story.

After high school graduation, I worked full time for my dad.  I figured I would just do that for awhile, maybe forever.  I didn't really have any big plans for my life which I think irritated my parents.  I'm pretty sure they paid people to take me out and get me out of their way. ;)

One day in the Spring, I received a letter from Ricks College in the United States saying that I had been accepted to their college!  Awesome...But....I didn't even fill out an application.  I had no desire to go to school in the US let alone, go to school.  Period.  Turns out, my cousin in Utah filled out an application on my behalf and sent it in.  She was going there and didn't want to go alone.  It was so nice of her...NOT.

I was furious but I knew there was no way out of it.  If I recall, my parents started packing my things that afternoon. There was not a single bone in my body that wanted to go to school.  I sat down with the catalog just to see what kind of …

30 day challenge- My Biggest Pet Peeve

The timing of this is...timely.

Yesterday, I had to spend 3 + hours with my biggest pet peeve!  I had to find a dark corner by the time it was over and rock myself back to something resembling sanity!  It was horrible!

My biggest pet peeve is men with EGOS...women too!  I can not stand their self righteous, holier than thou attitude! I can't stand that they think they are God's gift to everything. They are entitled and big.  They take up so much emotional space.  They never make mistakes but everyone else does.  They insist on things being done on their time frame and you must move Heaven and Earth to make them happy.

 I don't even want to spend time typing anymore about it, that's how disturbing my day was today.

So...ya, that's that.  Do you know what EGO stands for?

EDGING  GOD's true.

30 Day Challenge- Food I can't live without

I can't live without chocolate chip cookies.

I have spent at total of two years making cookies almost every week in hopes of perfecting a chocolate chip recipe.  I think I have finally arrived at that.

Here's the thing about chocolate chip cookies...It's not that I really can't live without them, I can't live without what they mean.

To me, chocolate chip cookies represent the warmth and comfort of home; a true comfort food.

When my kids were little, I was THAT mom who always had a warm cookie treat waiting for them when they piled off the school bus and we would sit around the table eating warm cookies and talking about the day. The best part of the day. I think I got that from my grandma.

Whenever I went to grandma's house, I would run to the kitchen right away because I knew she would always, without fail, have the cookie jar filled with her signature, soft raisin cookies.  I hate raisins but somehow, I loved those cookies, but just those ones, the ones t…

30 Day Challenge- My strange addictions

I can't say that I really have any strange addictions, nothing like you see on the TV show anyways.   I don't eat baby powder,  have a room filled with Pokemon cards, or drink urine...for real...none of that!  Sorry to disappoint you.

Gosh, this will be a short post...

For the past couple of months I have had this strange addiction to roasted broccoli and cauliflower.  I make it almost daily and I make a lot of it at a time.  I go through several heads of each, a week.  I don't do anything fancy, spritz it with some olive oil and a little chili powder and pepper, a dash of salt and I'm good. Sometimes, I add carrots, peppers and onions.  Oh, I love onions and my kids think this is a strange addiction.

And....I love, love, Lindor, extra dark truffles.

I'm not sure why the sudden interest in vegetables but I figure it's a good addiction to have.  It sort of off-sets my Pepsi addiction but I don't really consider it an addiction, just something I r…

30 Day Blogging Challenge- Parenting clicked when...

Okay, where were we when I was so rudely interrupted by my life.  Sheesh, the nerve.

Ya, parenting.  What a delightful topic.  Parenting.  We read a million books with good intention, then end up doing whatever we feel like anyways!

Seriously, the book of the day for me was Dr. T. Berry Brazelton!  He was pretty cool and I actually loved his premise of Touchpoints and I actually adopted that idea and it worked!

Then I got into the Eyres.  I love every one of their books and adopted many of their techniques and principles.  They even came along with me to the 'Sex' talk with my kids.  They have an extremely corny book on where babies come from but worked.   Truth be told, I wanted to be Linda Eyre.  She seemed just so perfect in every way.  She even had perfect and appropriately, frustrating days which made her that much more appealing. If you haven't read her book, I didn't plan to be a should.  She shares the great surprises of motherhood- like i…

The great disconnect...

Yesterday, we had our appointment at the Oncologist's to begin the genetic testing for our new disease.  There is no easy way to write that, that really makes sense...

Our new disease... Sounds like it's something I'm bragging about, we have a new disease and you don't! Or, that it is something we are so proud and excited about; something we chose, a realized dream...Our new disease...with a loving sigh tagged on the end!

It was clearly a strange morning!  In my mind, it felt like something so big!  So big, that the world should have stopped living, just for a moment, but it didn't seem to care.  In my mind, there should have been a moment of silence when everything just stood still.  I just wanted everything still and quiet...I wanted time to stop!  I wanted all of this to stop.  Even my own kids didn't recognize my anxiety as we drove up to the Oncology office.  They were out of the car and up the steps before I even had my seat belt off!

"What's the…

30 Day Challenge question...Three words to describe me

I have no clue...I asked my kids and they threw out words like

Organized- I'm not as organized as I once I just pretend to look organized in the chaos
Spontaneous- hmmmm, yet reserved

I would add words like


This is hard...I guess I would narrow it down to...

Easy Going

What are three words you would use to describe yourself?  I can see why this is a challenge question!

30 day challenge- What I Intended to do Yesterday

I had big plans on my to-do list yesterday, as usual, and, I accomplished most of them but there were three things that were left undone.

Shelbie's car is having issues and I was going to take it in to the shop to see what the problem is and how much it will set me back.  I have been working on a new business of my own and I need to track down some supplies online and was hoping to squeeze that in yesterday.I have been working on an article for a new magazine submission and had planned to polish that up and start creating the submission letters.  Nothing major and nothing that can't wait another day or two or three.  My paying jobs kept me really busy from sun up to sun down.  Now that I am thinking about it...
I really should have finished painting my house yesterday, started on some laundry, cleaned out the fridge and done some mending.  I needed to give the dog a haircut, give Sam a haircut, give me a haircut...color my hair.
Oh, and I was going to send a package to Spencer…

30 Day Challenge...My Purse

This is pretty much a random post and I'm not sure why the contents of my purse would be all that interesting but apparently, whoever thought up the 30 day challenge questions thinks it's pretty fascinating.

So...Here you go.
This is how my purse always looks. I did not clean it up for the picture.  I am pretty much a minimalist and have no idea why I always carry such a big bag.  I have a wallet for all the money I hope to store in there some day.  I do have a fetish, bordering on addiction to notebooks.  You can't see very well but I have three currently stashed.  I write all sorts of stuff in them.  Mostly, spur of the moment inspiration, blog ideas, to-do's.  You get the picture.  I have a bottle of Pancreatic Enzymes for the kids when we eat out.  Finally, I have a camera.  That's it.

In the zipper pocket, I keep Burt's Bees chap-stick, two pens because you will rarely see me using public pens and lipstick.

How boring!

The Lesson I Learned Yesterday...

Yesterday was a busy day in the classroom of life...Lots of homework...

Yesterday, I learned that some people can go from nothing to entitled in no time flat.

Yesterday, I learned that there comes a time when you have to let it go.

Yesterday, I learned that there will come a point in time, when one has to stake their claim upon their own life and stand alone.  Not everything is your fault.

Yesterday, I learned that there are some people you will never be able to make happy.

Yesterday, I learned that patience is a virtue and any virtue worth having takes a lot of practice and ...well...patience and there is no shortage of virtue building experiences in my neck of the woods.

Yesterday, I learned that I don't really know what I want and I should probably just trust God a little more and my head a lot less.

Yesterday, I learned AGAIN...that God is in His Heaven and He freely distributes miracles to His children.

Yesterday, I learned that Spencer is one tough cookie!

Yesterday, I watch…

Reality Shows

Which reality show would I love to be on?  That is today's challenge question.

The reality show I think would be so fun is 30 Days.  The show is no longer on the air but it was hosted by Morgan Spurlock.  He would take people, or himself and immerse them in a lifestyle they were not familiar with for 30 days and then discuss the social impact of the experiment.

He experienced a lot of things and did it for 30 days:

Living on minimum wage Living off the gridLiving in a wheelchairLife in jailTrying weird and crazy anti aging techniques  Now the question is...what would I want to experience for 30 days?

Three Influential People

This one is easy for me.  The three people I would love to meet someday would be...

I fell in love with Brene Brown last year when I watched her TED talks on Shame and Vulnerability.  I have taken her Imperfection class and loved that too.  She is so intuitive and real.  She is powerful in her message and inspires me whenever I hear her talk.
 Deepak Chopra.  I have been a great fan of his when I was a young(er) mother.  His book The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success was the foundation for my parenting style.  I love, and have read the majority of his books.  Some of them are 'out there' and I don't really connect but the majority of them, I do.  I love his  ideas.
 Steven R Covey.  I read 4 of his books before I was 20.  The best books I've ever read! I have taught many classes on his principles of the 7 Habits.  It's a book that re-read every now and again.  I have used his mantra over and over in my life "Efficiency with things, effectiveness with people."…