Sunday, July 26, 2009

Holy Week from... well, okay, still from Utah... but crazy!

First off - no, I don't know WHERE all my time went... really.

My Mom came to town with my recently returned missionary Brother whose english language skills have returned quite nicely. Maybe even better than BEFORE he left for Santiago... or maybe he's just not afraid of me anymore??? Also in tow were Grandma B (because that distinguishes her from the OTHER Grandma... whose last name also begins with B...) and Uncle Mike. Just two of their in town nights were spent at my house since they'd rented a Condo for the week - which means that while my house was clean for their arrival (well... reasonably so... they arrived the same day I got back from the family reunion... I had a wonderful excuse for that pile of laundry!) it was not so clean during the week... shoot, why bother - it was just my sister (who flew in from NY) hanging at our place!

But wait, that's not all!!!

Also visiting (but not staying at my house... except for brief drop by and cool off visits) Aunt P, Cousin S + baby, Cousin K + 6 kids, Aunt P (the other one) and her grandkids, Uncle D & Auntie H and 5 of their children who we got to see before they up and move to England in... ummm... 4 days? Did I miss anyone? Oh, well... Uncle R, Aunt C and their assorted children/children's spouses/children's spouse's parents/and children's children that we mostly saw at plays but convinced at least a few to come eat the amazing amount of food that was prepared here Saturday afternoon. Seriously, our menus are always the same fare: Meat of some sort, potato salad (with too much celery in my opinion), pink fluff, etc.... but what we lack in creativity we make up for in sheer VOLUME! Do NOT ask me right now how my diet is going... you REALLY don't want to get me started... I'll let you know when I'm back within 10 pounds of goal again... but don't hold your breath. (Hmmm... come to think of it, maybe if I DID hold my breath I could lose a few ounces?)

a little swimming, lots of card playing, and a few shows at the Neil Simon later and my entire week has passed... and what have I got to show for it? ticket stubs... dirty towels... scrawled scores on notepads showing that I won... (I threw away the ones where I lost)

Oh - and I have two new t-shirts...

The first: a nice blue shirt with a cute smiley that says "I'm in Charge" - because our reunion theme was all about us being in charge of our own happiness and attitude. I love it... even when all 66 reunion attendees were wearing it... kind of felt like we ought to march on Washington right then and there!!!

The second: a vivid illustration of the difference between the families that Q and I come from... His produced the "I'm in Charge" shirt... and mine... a yellow shirt proclaiming "I'm just one big freaking ray of sunshine aren't I?" Seriously... his family could be an afterschool special... mine? We'd be more likely to show up on Jerry Springer :)

hey, I'm not complaining - we have LOTS of fun in the meantime :)

So, there it is... my official apology for missing out on all your bloggy updates - for ignoring your new recipes and tips on how to simplify my life... I think the only blog I managed to stay in touch with was Shelle's - which reminded me how petty all the little things are... so my heart goes out to her family - and I hold my own a little closer. or a lot closer.

I'll be around again... sometime...

I'd guarantee that I'd catch up this week... but the boys are participating in a missionary week... which means no TV, no internet, no iPod, etc... I'm not sure if I will be more help being "supportive" and joining them in their ban - or if I should just send them upstairs and enjoy the fact that I won't be battling them for computer time :)

Monday, July 20, 2009

My morning therapy sessions

Each morning I wake up at 6:30 - eager to start my day. Wait. Strike that. Let's say "anxious to take on the day"...

would you believe "willing" to get out of bed?

Folks - 6:30 is a beautiful time of day. The neighbors and their dogs are all still resting. My kids are usually still asnooze in their beds. There is no game systems on and being yelled at by impatient boys whose names shall not be mentioned... but his initials are PDC...

The best part of my morning routine are my therapy sessions - my walking partner and I have decided that we don't walk to lose weight (good thing because it is SOOOO not working out that way) but we walk to save our sanity. There is something therapeutic about being about to vent in the early morning and then come home refreshed!

Well, Monday's therapy session had a little bonus moment as we walked around the park - lapping a sweet little ole lady *(SLOL) who was slowing down to miss the sprinkler. It's hot - I wanted a little spritz by then... but apparently SLOL didn't because when that water hit her in the face she used a SLOE (sweet little ole expletive) that sent me into hysterical laughter!

So sorry SLOL... I'd been thinking of you like my grandmother while I was walking - and the very idea of my SLOG (sweet little ole grandmother) saying D#@N was just too hilarious :) I hope you will forgive the hysterical laughter... someday...

Thursday, July 16, 2009


nope, not a scripture reference, try again...

not even close... well, maybe - because perhaps we could call it a spiritual experience ;)

"after missing out on the lunch last week I was lost - but now I'm found, was blind... bu-ut now - I see...."

17:03 is how long I spent chatting with the Crash Test Dummy on the phone this morning - just moments ago :)

I can see why there was not much in the way of breadstick consumption over at the OG - because there is just SO much to talk about with this gal!!!

we managed to cram politics, weather, and the state of the economy into our few minutes... so I guess I've reached the "acceptance" stage of my lunch-missing grief - because I'm not sad at all... We've got some plans in the works for the next time Crash hits St. George - so all of you in the surrounding counties better be blocking out some serious breadstick time in September!!!! Of course, with all the conversing, maybe it would be better if you ate first?

And now I REALLY have to run off to my meeting - not with Crash... because we're both swamped busy... but apparently they need me to fill out all sorts of paperwork for my new job... Yikes, the work force is demanding... time cards, etc...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

On my honor...

the family reunion starts tomorrow...

I should mention that this is a GOOD thing - really, we always have lots of fun. It's amazing to me that we can pack 66 people into one home for fun and games - and there are no Jerry Springer moments!

The reunion has always happened on the same week each July - to coincide with M.I.L.'s birthday partly - but mostly because it's a good time to plan for because M.I.L. doesn't every let us make a big deal out of her special day!!

The Problem? Okay - the first of the problems...

Harry Potter books have been released on that same week - TWICE - so I tend to be an anti-social aunt. I've read and hiked, read and bowled, read and gone out to lunch... The movies tend to have the same release date - what's with that?

I'm being good and waiting... all the way 'til Monday - so SHHHHhhh, please don't tell me you hated it/loved it/were disappointed by X or thrilled by Y... I really don't want to know. It's killing me!!!

Which brings me to my second problem with the scheduling...

The Neil Simon Festival always starts that same time... which (because my uncle is HIGHLY involved with the festival) brings relatives to town... which means I come home from the reunion to a houseful of folks... including my mother whose birthday is right on the heels of M.I.L.'s birthday... which THIS year - means that it will be HER special day I'm ignoring if I zone into Harry Potter Land...

Yes, I'm a little obsessed - I won't go into detail, but I have been known to take a few notes while reading... and maybe I HAVE made a chart of the characters and their relationship to eachother... but On My Honor - it won't get in the way of my REAL relationships anymore!!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Convenient Memory and Parental Perspective...

many Many MANY years ago - in the pre-offspring years I was hanging out at my in-laws house and they had picked up a movie to watch. Based on our recommendation. OOOOOPS! We hadn't seen it since its theatrical release and only remembered the funny laugh out loud moments - I'd claim innocence/ignorance but the truth is that "So I Married An Ax Murderer" just didn't set off our "mute button sensor" back in the day... until we tried to watch it with parents in the room.

This keeps happening to us now... a funny movie from our youth that we think the kids will appreciate turns out to be something that should have been rated PG(boiysiitl5ywtpp) - and for those of you not in the motion picture industry and therefor unaware of this particular rating it's Parental Gguidance but only if you've seen it in the last 5 years with the parental perspective...

You see, we've forgotten things... and APPARENTLY have become a little more aware of what is being shown to little eyes.

We pulled out the old standard "Mrs Doubtfire" last night - after a wonderful family night of Karaoke (to get them ready for the reunion)... and I'm just thrilled that we started it late enough that most of the kids fell asleep!

I won't go into detail - but let's just say that I have a copy of this movie if anyone else wants to subject their kids to a little too much of Robin Williams' early humor and give their thumb a good workout on the Mute and FF buttons.

okay... so THAT part was HiLaRiOuS...

HOWEVER - another thing we've recently been allowing them to watch has given them only WONDERFUL lessons in life... that lesson being that "special effects" were a little less special and a little less effective back in the seventies when they filmed the original Land of the Lost Episodes... can anyone remind me WHY I loved that so much as a kid?

Oh wait - I remember... because it was the ONLY thing ON! Yes folks, I'm showing my age because I grew up in the pre-cable era... I actually remember waking up early on Saturday morning and having to WAIT for programming to begin because there was not a channel just for cartoons in my day and age...

you know, way back when before dirt was invented...

Sunday, July 12, 2009

all those other bloggable things - in no particular order....

Mr Bendy Hop Along Bill took our trip with us... and made his way into MANY of the road trip photos. Mostly because I turned camera duties over to my oldest son, who shall hereafter be referred to as T Jr. (so as to avoid confusion... he IS quite manly and all boy... and he's not REALLY named after me...)

Remember these Shoes??? Yeah, well T Jr. is growing out of them. So, let's begin again - he got a lot of good art from family on this trip and should be able to get them completed by the end of the OTHER family reunion... as a matter of fact, he might need a whole other pair!

We went to see the amazing fireworks - had to enjoy it because usually it's so amazingly HOT that we have to watch from the safety of an air conditioned vehicle... T Jr. and I traded off the camera trying to keep it nice and steady - until we discovered that it was MUCH more fun to just shake the heck out of it and get some interesting shots!

Great, blurry AND sideways... but my point is that my friend Shelley makes some awesome goodies which she brought for the whole crowd when we got together. If you're a Coloradoan you should check her out... if you're not, don't make fun of Coloradoan, because REALLY... Utahn is FAR worse (just the word, not the people)...

Ha - don't we look luverly? more friends - this time at the park... we did take more attractive photos - but with my habit of making weird faces in all photos - it was much more flattering if everyone else was too! Luv you girls for playing along... and in case you didn't recognize quilter extraordinaire there on the right - check out her blog here.

all the cousins - you might recognize my little rugrats - but if you don't the tallest two are mine... and the boy inbetween them is mine too... even if he doesn't look thrilled about it! That little cutie on the right is mine... and the one second from the left is my CLONE so if you've ever met me you probably didn't have to be told THAT! The rest? well, they're just darn cute too... and even though this picture is less than 2 weeks old it's already outdated as my sister had another baby a few days ago... so just imagine a little newborn tucked in there somewhere.

some old friends and I met at a Karaoke bar... where I chickened out but had a grand time visiting with high school friends. Now when our 20 year comes around (in oh... say... 19 years... because of COURSE I'm that young...) I'll be able to recognize them all at first glance!! This one is K - who has always had an incredible singing voice and a wicked sense of humor - love her. (and everyone else too... but my pictures all turned out sucky... gotta go scour facebook for more!) (and... lest anyone worry - like my kids - I drank two tall glasses of ice water and had a yummy sandwich!)

One of the hidden gems in Colorado - Swetsville Zoo - no animals at all, and probably a grand place to hurt yourself if you run around crazy - but I love it! The entire place (every 40 foot dinosaur, snoopy, and humpty dumpty) are made from old car parts, gas cans, and assorted other junk that is now not cluttering up a landfill somewhere! If you're ever near Loveland, CO - this is worth a quick stop, really!

sideways again???? grrrrrr... okay - well, bonus points to anyone who can tell me what credit card company used this guy in their national ad campaign... or at least I THINK it was a credit card company... it's keeping me up nights!!!

seriously blurry on this one... just proving that the true bloggist in me had my camera out even at lunch... and apparently my sis has gotten into the photo spirit even though I've never seen a single photo over at her blog...

I made the mistake of introducing my kids to the old game of "hold your breath through the tunnel" What? you didn't play that game??? oh, you must not have every driven with my parents who would do ANYTHING for a few seconds of silence... it didn't work so well with my kids - because they'd all gang up on W and try to make him laugh. and then there was the Eisenhower tunnel incident...

Next (well, actually first, but I'm guessing you can't tell while reading this that I'm writing the post in reverse order... it's just easier that way) - I may have mentioned that T Jr. was in charge of the camera during the car trip???? I had to go twice around a roundabout in Grand Junction for him to snap a photo of a big dinosaur... and then he did this... creepier than the money guy from the Geico commercials any day!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

one of the 13 bloggable things...

okay - not much time (yikes, I think that's getting to be my mantra... maybe I'll print it on a t-shirt) - but I had to share...

I cheated.

Not on M.O.T.H. (hang your head in shame if you even THOUGHT that!). Not on my diet... well, not really - because I'm starting that later... but on my beloved Cozy...

Truth be told it was a brief and tepid affair (okay - it was WAY too hot) and really the pictures were just for Kristina and now apparently Shelle who even after reading THIS wonderful expose don't believe me... There - photographic evidence that I've tried the competition (and a very fancy version of the competition at that!) but I still prefer my Cozy... if it will ever forgive me for straying.

(more bloggables to come...)

Monday, July 6, 2009

An addition to the family... ?????????

Okay, so we're home. Along the route I ran into at least 13 things that I thought were "bloggable" ... and yet, when I got home, I was met with something the trumped ALL of that!

Yep - I get home to a card - addressed to "the C family" - which is our name - at our address... so the ManOfTheHouse opened it of course..

Imagine his surprise!!!!
I mean... when I left town I only had the 5 kids he knew about... so is he expecting me to bring home an extra?

The card was signed by "Tom and Cindy" - which are the names of my aunt and uncle - so he's thinking that it's either legit or an honest mistake and they meant to send it to another niece? I think by this time M.O.T.H. is afraid I've been keeping a secret even better than his sister Megz! (who prefer to wait until the blessing day to announce that she's prego)

Okay - so really, the explanation is quite simple as there is ANOTHER Q.C. in town... we've received a number of phone calls for them in the past... if we were EVIL we might have been able to capitalize on this... or at least have chosen a really bad granite color for their counters when those people called... but NO, we've politely told them that they had the wrong number...

I get it - not everyone wants to be called constantly and asked if you're THAT Q.C.... right? I get it... well, mostly because now WE get those phone calls instead of you!

But this time... ummm... well folks:

I'm holding THIS hostage :) (nah, just let us know where to send it... I'd leave contact info, but hey - we're in the book!)

but really - there's a time limit here... because my curiosity will eventually get the better of me you know!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Old Home Week

For those of you who haven't figured it out by the fact that I haven't shown my face in the blogosphere, I'm out of town. I'd post a bunch of pictures and all that to keep it interesting, but the fact is I'm dead tired and since I'm on a borrowed laptop I'm not sure I could figure it out without a good nights' sleep!

The kids have been great. Seriously - maybe it has something to do with the fact that I NEED them to be helpful... or maybe it's just that they don't want to embarrass themselves in front of too many relatives? That's not to say we haven't had our "moments" but they've been blessedly few and brief!

The drive was good - MUCH better than I had feared. Last time we attempted this trip all 5 kids came down with the flu AND I had a tire blow out in the middle of a cell "dead-zone"... not that it would have mattered much because I didn't actually HAVE a cell phone at the time! With that as my "reference point", it had to get better! I've been monitoring the kids' health (and that of their friends) for weeks, I've been to Discount Tire to have the tires checked, rotated, and balanced, and I've been holding on to my cell phone like it was the Iron Rod of scripture!

Why make this insane trip? Good question... and just because you asked I'm going to tell you!!!

My youngest brother came home from his mission (for the LDS church) last week - I would have been here when he arrived, except for that darn scout camp. After two years we were all eager to see him and see if he'd forgotten all his english. Amazingly enough - he still qualifies as a native english speaker even after two years in Chile!
My older sister is also here - from New York - so I just had to make it... otherwise my mother might have photoshopped a picture of me from less flattering days into the family shot we finally took!

And (thanks to Facebook) I was able to connect with a lot of friends! Dive Bar Karaoke anyone? THIS I'll go into more detail about when I get home...

Well, pray for a speedy return trip - we're heading back Monday and looking forward to seeing M.O.T.H. again - and I'm sure he's looking forward to us being home. I talked to him a few minutes ago on the phone and he admitted that he's eaten a peanut butter sandwich and a TV dinner today. If anyone local is reading this could you look in on him?

See you all soon, I'm not abandoning the blog-reading... just taking a break!