Friday, August 29, 2008


Hey! I'm going camping for the first time in almost 2 years! Hooray! I will NOT recount the events of the last camping fiasco...

Our Ward Campout is this evening and I am just thrilled! I'm hoping the excitement will carry me until we get home tomorrow morning because nothing else will get me through the thought of Audrey trying to sleep in the woods.

I'm sure I'll have some interesting stories when I return, filthy and smelling like campfire with traces of smores around my mouth... siiiiigh...

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Audrey had the day from you-know-where yesterday. By the time 6 o'clock rolled around I was so sick and tired of her screaming over nothing that she went to bed right after dinner. Honestly, I couldn't figure out all day what her problem was. She'd be playing in the family room next to me and then all of a sudden, SCREAM! A few minutes later she'd be fine and playing some more... then... SCREAM! Over to the living room... SCREAM! Mom picks her up... SCREAM! Mom puts her down... SCREAM! No, I'm not exaggerating. It sounded like the way she screams when she's in pain, but she wasn't falling down or pinching her fingers on anything... The only thing I can work out is that she might be teething again. She's about due for her canines... what are those? Eye Teeth? I don't know.
There were some occassions of normal "I fell down and hurt myself." That was when the tears would show up. There isn't much that's sadder than baby tears.

Oh, another thing. I've recently started working on variety puzzles. I bought some books last week and have been doing fill-ins, cryptograms, word seeks, logic problems, etc. The logic problems have just proved to me that I'm a complete dim-wit. I spent a grand total of 4 hours (possibly more) on just one of them yesterday. Ben has tried to make me feel better and told me that I was keeping my brain moving... I said, Yeah.. in circles. More screaming from my end of the house.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Skewl Daze

Ben reminded me this morning of a sweet little 5 year old off to his first day of school. That is, if a 5 year old is 5' 11" and bald with a goatee. He was so nervous and I really felt for him. I sort of gave him the wife/mother speech.. You'll be great, you'll see! Don't think about everything that you have to do, just focus on one class at a time. June Cleaver eat your heart out...

Anyway, I really do know what Ben is going through (to a certain extent).. college is a bit on the scary side and if I was doing it now, I'd probably be completely white-haired.. or bald.

Yes, Dara, I know that was a short one.. I'll most likely bore you some more later.. :P

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I'm sick and twisted.

I have taken to watching Spongebob Squarepants with Audrey.. well, I watch it and Audrey sortof watches it. She likes the themesong. Then she loses interest and I spend the next half hour laughing my head off.

I caught the pilot episode a few weeks ago. There is a scene near the end with Spongebob making Crabby Patties and he is so blissful he is dancing all over the kitchen. The music was hillarious and I just had to find it and download it. As it turns out, the song was Tiny Tim singing "Living in the Sunlight, Loving in the Moonlight". The song makes me laugh so hard and I have to listen to it at least 3 or 4 times a week.

I shared it with Dara and she made me send it to her. I shared it with Jennifer and she said I was wacked. I shared it with Ben and he wants to put it on his phone as the ring tone.. I shared it with Rebecca and her responce was ... "uhh.. okay." There's no accounting for taste, I suppose (mine or anyone elses).

I'm not saying that it's cool for me to like this song, but it does make me feel silly and I think I need to feel silly once in a while.

(I also took the liberty of adding it to my playlist.. it's on the top, so if you want to listen to this little piece of rediculous artistic expression, it's here for your pleasure.. or disgust.)

The Beach!!

Yes, we finally got to the beach while we were in California. The Saturday before we left for home, we trekked down to Carlsbad State Beach and spent 3 or 4 hours enjoying the sand and surf. I've come to the conclussion that my daughter is a big chicken.. No petting zoo, no ocean water.. sheesh! She spent the better part of an hour walking along the beach and swerving whenever a wave got a bit too close to her toes. We did manage to get her in the water, but she was NOT happy about it. Who would have thought my water baby would hate the ocean? At one point she tried to suck her thumb to make her feel better. She immediately pulled it out and looked at it incredulously. Why does my thumb taste like SALT?

Getting cozy in a beach chair. Playing Peek-a-boo with Aunt Becky.

Eating sunblock... Yummers!

Running up and down the beach.. finding lots of weird stuff... Wow! Seaweed!
Baby sand footprints.. awwww!

Running from waves. Playing in the sand.. can it possibly get better than this?

Ben had his first real beach experience and spent about 2 1/2 of the 3 1/2 hours or so IN the ocean. He learned how to boogie board and discovered that the ocean is much saltier than he ever imagined.
Boogie Ben!
And where is Emily in all this? No way in heck are you seeing me in my tankeeny. I think you've all seen enough flower-print whales in your lives..

The Petting Zoo gives Audrey the Jibblies..

Alright.. we took this horrible trip up the side of a California mountain to get to a rather decent petting zoo.. the guy who took our money looked like one of those creepy dudes from a horror movie.. he was even missing fingers on his right hand.. *jibblies*

Anyhoo, we went in and found the cute little petting zoo and Audrey just lit up. ANIMALS EVERYWHERE! By golly, there are Peacocks walking around right in front of us!!!

We got into the little enclosed barnyard area that smells like I don't know what (but I really do). Audrey got really excited and so we put her down right in the middle of a small herd of goats... Audrey is a rather large toddler but these goats dwarfed her... She was not amused and screamed to be picked back up.. *jibblies*

I figured if she had someone grown-up holding her above the animals, she might enjoy herself. No such luck. The llamas (happy llama, sad llama..) reached their heads over the fence to take dried corn from us and Audrey tried to melt into Jennifer's torso. I've never seen her try to be so small. She's normally so confident. I guess it's hard to be confident when your parents are trying to feed you to pot bellied pigs and goats. *jibblies*

There was one begger goat that kept pawing at Ben's leg which was pretty hillarious. Ben kept putting corn on a pigs back to get the goat to eat off the pig. It wasn't picky.. "Yum! Pig Back Corn!" And some of the boy goats in another pen were getting ticked off at each other and head butting. That was awsome.. the thunk when they hit each other was super cool!

Where are the pictures you say? Well.... I hit a random button while downloading the pictures onto my computer and the download stopped... Rather stupidly, I deleted most of the pictures off my camera before I realized that I didn't get them all. Aaaaaaagh! So.. I have a few sad pictures to show you..

This is the weird plucked chicken.. standing next to a rather normal looking feathered chicken.. *jibblies*

This was the super cute baby llama! It took me a solid half hour to get a picture of it without it's mom in the way.

Audrey touching the only animal she was not afraid of.. a big fake horse... sigh.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A&J's House & Frogs

Wow, can this family sleep! The whole time we were in California (9 days), no one in the family got up before 7am besides Andy since he had to work. Most days, Jennifer would be up and moving around by 8-ish and the kids no earlier than 8:30 or 9am... some days those kids were still in bed at 10! No, they're not lazy.. they just love their sleep... they... LOVE their sleep... alot...

The great thing about Jennifer and Andy's house is that everyone is really relaxed and pretty cool about everything. We did pretty much whatever we wanted the whole trip and no one bugged us about it.. of course.. most of what we wanted to do was a whole lot of nothing.. heehee!

Ben read through most of a Harry Potter book... one of the thick ones.. and I wasted a phenomenal amount of time playing Animal Crossing on the Gamecube. Audrey was just thrilled to be out of the car and playing with other kids. She was fairly easy to please but challenging to keep out of trouble. I don't think that house has been child-proofed.. their youngest is 6 after all.

Audrey discovered the dress -up drawer fairly early on. At one point she was dressed up as a ballerina by her cousins and I wish I had taken a picture.. but I did get these:

Hi Mom! Cute Frog!!


Okay, I'm done now.

There is something a little sad about an abandoned frog.


Alright, I'm going to do this in chapters, because there is too much to talk about in regards to my California trip. I don't want to wear you all out.. or me either.

On a beautiful Friday evening, Ben and I packed up the van and waited with baited breath for Audrey's bedtime. Our brilliant plan was to give her a baby nightcap (milk), put her in her pajamas and take her to her carseat which was reclining in a friendly way in the van. Yes, it was brilliant. You see, we've done it before and it worked like a charm... of course, that was 9 months ago... and she wasn't a toddler back then... or loudly opinionated.
Anyway, the nightcap, pajamas and carseat went well and we hit the road with smiles on our faces; me dreaming of the oceans, Ben dreaming of Disneyland and Audrey not dreaming at all.. which is most likely why about an hour into the trip she decided that she was no longer amused and wanted her crib. For the next two hours she proceeded to explain to us, rather urgently, that if she didn't get to her crib ASAP, she would do her best to single-handedly bring about the insanity of both of her parents. In exhaustion, she left us teetering on the brink and snoozed for two hours. Bliss.

After the two hour intermission, she regaled us with her rendition of "Eine kleine Nachtmusik in Scream Major." At that point, whichever one of us was driving (I can no longer remember who) rather smuggly put on headphones and listened to their MP3 player... The passenger was left to try to calm Audrey down and silently go batty. After another two (three?) hours, the budding vocalist wore herself out and gave us another couple of hours of mentally healing quiet. The rest of the trip is a bit of a blur to me. I do, however, recall getting into the outskirts of L.A. and wishing wholeheartedly that I wasn't the one driving, as the lanes were narrow and the early morning commuters were already on the lookout for their next homicide.

The moment we pulled into Jennifer and Andy's driveway, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and melted just a little. I didn't get a nap though... their house was just about to get up and start their day... Andy was already out golfing.

Monday, August 18, 2008

I'm screaming in my head.

Okay, just a quickie today. I'm home. The drive (both ways) was HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE.
The actual vacation in California was too much fun and I'll be writing about that soon. I just need time to rest and tell the voices in my head to stop screaming because we're home now...

No wonder my parents were crazy when we were all kids... imagine 7 Audrey's on an 11 hour road trip...... *shudder*

Friday, August 8, 2008

California Here I Come!

Wahoo! Tonight we're heading to California! We'll be driving rediculous hours (we're leaving at about 8pm, hoping that Audrey will sleep most of the way) but it'll be fun anyway.
I haven't been to the ocean in about 15 years, give or take a few months. So, stay tuned for pictures of us all in a little less than we should be wearing (a little too pale for our own good) and returning home with blistering sunburn... by we.. I mean me....

So, packing, packing, packing.. trying to remember all the things we are certain to forget..

I'll talk to you all soon (I don't know if I'll have time to blog while on vacation, but I will try) and hugs to you all!!


Monday, August 4, 2008

I'm having too much fun!

Okay.. so after enjoying doing that little video on Audrey, I just HAD to do another one.. here is the result. You'll have to pardon the love-letter style.. I DID make it for Ben after all.
(Again, turn of my music at the bottom of the page and turn up your volume.)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A Year in Review (In Stereo)

Make sure to turn up the volume and turn off my music at the bottom of the page before you hit play. Comeon, it's only 4 minutes! Enjoy! :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Boo Boo, New Do and Duuuuude!

I guess it's been a full day for everyone in the family. Ben went on a scouting hike this morning and while attempting to cross a small stream a nasty tree decided to whack him in the face with one of it's branches. Scarring appears to be in his future as well as several days of painful healing. He's got some nice swelling and a doozy of a headache... You may now look at his picture and say "Awwww!"

My hair was getting a little crazy for me. It was all of 4 or 5 inches long on the top.. so, I had to go get it cut. After repeated, "No, let's go shorter." comments on my side, my stylist finally figured out that when I said short, I mean SHORT! I love my sexy haircut.
While driving in the car this afternoon, one of our fellow drivers chose to ignore the 55mph speed limit and decided to drive 35mph instead. Ben tried very hard to get round them several times but couldn't quite manage it with all the other traffic. Finally, Ben let loose a frustrated "Dude!"
From the back seat of the van came a very expressive high pitched "Doood!" Ben and I nearly laughed ourselves silly. My little mimic!

The Fruits of my Labor

I kill every green thing I touch.. by that I mean plants, in any shape or form. I remember that I once got an ivy sprig from Melissa's wedding boquet and I thought it would be super romantic if I grew a little ivy plant out of it. So, I put it in a cup of water to make the little roots sprout and it was doing very very well. Once I was happy with the roots, over the span of a few days, I put soil into the cup to try to get it acclimatized to drinking with dirt in the way. Once I was happy with that, I put it in a pot and it died in 2 days. Sigh. I decided then and there that plants hated me. It's been true up until this spring.

Over the years I've tried various tactics:
1. Buying pre-grown flowers, herbs and vegetables from the nursery. (Usually dead within a month or two)

2. Planting seeds in a patch out in the back yard. (Seedlings got buried in the shower of Elm seeds from the neighbor's tree. I was afraid to rake them out of the way for fear of digging up the little baby plants.)

3. Peet Pots... (Blew all over the yard the first night I took them out after the frosts were over. The sprinklers come on at 4am so I couldn't rescue them before they turned into little blobs of soil.)

So, I tried just planting seeds in massive quantities in pots on the front porch. I figured I would faithfully water them and see how many of the thousands of rediculous little seeds would grow... Here are the fruits of my labor: FRUITS I TELL YA! FRUITS!

Okay, so technically, these are the only actual fruits that I planted. Aren't they cute?! I have a feeling these tomatoes will be green for a long time... Just keep watering, just keep watering! (To the tune of Dorey.)

We've already complemented one meal with some of my fabulous beans and they're still coming!

Awwww! I love flowers!
An added bonus: I was watering my little cute plants this morning and I went back to put more water in my watering can and to my suprise I found a little stowaway on board. I quickly called Ben and told him to bring the camera outside. In the meantime, my little safari creature decided to jump off my watering can and onto our hose keeper.
Ben was astonished to hear that I have never seen a Mantis in person before. Always in books and on TV. He told me that this little guy was just a baby and that grown mantis's are a several inches tall/long... I sortof got the jibblies there.

The poor little guy just seems a bit forlorn about being taken (accidentally) from his flowers. I'm just too chicken to try to move him back. I'm afraid I'll break one of his little legs, or he'll jump off my hand and onto ME.. eeeek! So, I'll let him have the adventure of his life and find the plant on his own... I hope he makes it... I can feel the guilt complex coming on!


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