Sunday, June 29, 2008


was the year I graduated from High School.

And the year I moved out on my own.

The year I turned 18.

(All in that order)

Apparently, the fact that I paid my own way was very obvious in my ability to afford decent clothes.

And, for some crazy reason I thought that bright red lipstick made me sexier! Go figure.

Thanks for the walk down memory lane Kathy. I will forgive you for this post. How could you ever know that I've had much therapy trying to forget these better times of my life.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

That's what friends are for

It's Saturday night. So, of course, I have to do the dreaded Sunday ironing before I go to bed.
There is not one chore in the whole world that I detest more than ironing.

So, while the iron heats up, I am looking at the pictures on my hard drive.
Here is a picture from last week when LG's shirts were ironed.

I am sure that none of these shirts are in the closet now.
They have all joined new phases of the laundry cycle.

The phases are:

One - the first dirty laundry basket in the bedroom.
Two - the second laundry basket in the laundry room.
Three - pretreated or soaked.
Four - Being washed (at least I have a machine that does this, unlike my dishes)
Five - in the dryer.
Six - within the pile in front of the dryer.
Seven - being folded.
Eight - being put away or hung up. (Phase Seven and eight can differ on an average of two days)
Nine - Being taken from the hanger and worn (and ironed if necessary).

It doesn't really matter what phase these shirts are in right this second. All we need to know, for the story's sake is that these shirts are most certainly not still ironed.

LG wore one to work every day this week.
And he was a very happy man when he didn't have to iron every morning, like usual.

I was not the woman who ironed these shirts.
This is where my post title comes in.
I have every reason to be worried because
my friend Valerie was.

How do you get a Valerie, you wonder?
So have I.

So, is "ironing shirts" what friends are for? I don't recall those lyrics from the song.

I have pondered this question. What are friends for?
I will post about my answer another day.

Right now, I need to sleep so I can stay away (ha ha, just caught this typo when editing - this is supposed to say awake) at church tomorrow.

But, I will not sleep without telling Valerie THANKS.

And without leaving you this funny story.

A few years back Abigail received a shirt from one of her friends for a birthday present.
She sat down to write her thank you cards.

I was glad that I caught this spelling error before I mailed the note:

Dear ________,

Thank you so much for the S-H-I-R-T. (but the R was left out)
I loved it.


So, maybe friends aren't made for interesting birthday gifts or even for misspelled thank you cards.

Maybe they are made for doing the chores you hate most.

What do you think?

Friday, June 27, 2008


And this random picture has nothing to do with the post, but I don't believe in posting without a picture and I don't want to write a post for this picture. And, I have no idea what picture to use in correlation of this post.

This is the Smoky Mountains...taken a few weeks back while we went to see sychronized fireflies. Haven't had time for the post.
The interesting thing about this picture is that it really is sooooo foggy in the Smoky Mountains. I had to wipe my lens before every shot. It was all fogged up.

Three is a lucky number for me.
3 brothers.
3 sisters.
3 kissed girls before my hubby found me.
3 months of dating via e-mail before I got married.
3 daughters.
3 hours of sleep every night for 3 years of my life.
3 years of law school.
3 months of bar study (lucky we only did this twice)
3 pills I take every night to stay sane.
3 dollars in my wallet right now.

yeah, you get the picture.
This is the way I choose to lead into my tag which I am sure none of you care to read.
But, I must cooperate or I may let down my lucky number.

How to play the game. Post these rules on your blog: List 3 Joys, 3 Fears, 3 Goals, 3 Current Obsessions/Collections, and 3 Random surprises about yourself. Tag five people at the end of your post by leaving their names. I will not tag...I don't believe in tagging.

2-enjoying nature


3 GOALS (Sorry, left this out the first publish)
1-live happily ever after
2-write and publish something, anything
3-go on a honeymoon someday

1-thinking about blogging (waiting for some time to actually do it right)
2-thinking about completed home repairs (waiting for the time and money)
3-thinking about the future when I will have more time to myself (while trying to stay sane babysitting all summer)

1-I google my exboyfriends from time to time, but never find any info on them. (I must say that I love my hubby A LOT and that I really am just a curious person)
2-I google myself all of the time and wonder if my exboyfriends ever google me and find my blog (try it Alice Wills....I come up on page one...yeah, that's right...I've succeeded in life. None of my ex boyfriends have anything on their google search and I now have a different name yet still come up on page one by my maiden name!!)
3-I google the google searches that have come to my blog, just to make sure that I still come up! (Am I weird or what?)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rules, rules, and more rules.

As you all know, I am blessed with three beautiful daughters. What you don't know is that these girls are almost perfect in every way. I'm not trying to brag. I just speak the truth.

Look at this, even their profiles are perfect.
What a great Mother's Day gift from the primary, huh?

People notice the goodness of my children and they are always asking me, "Why are they so good? What are your tricks? What are your rules?" I could write a book, really, but wish to share a really good trick here. Rules have to be easily maintained.

First, I have to give credit to the kids, God sent us the best.

Second, I think LG and I learned early that following through is very important in discipline. If you do lay down a rule, you must follow through with enforcing it.

Third, we give our kids room to just be. Therefore, in return, they give us room to just be.

These three "tricks" go together. First, you have to believe, truly believe with everything you are that your children are great, and that they want to be great. This ideal in your children really affects your attitudes when parenting.

Second, you have to be in charge. You can't let your kids run the roost. They need leadership. They are just waiting to be taught the consequences of their actions. You must follow through so that they understand that there are real and consistent consequences. Lord of the Flies taught me this in 9th grade.

Third, and this is a very important key. You have to give enough room to your children, and more importantly to YOU, so that following through is actually do-able. If you have so many rules, being in charge is way too hard. And NOT fun! And nobody wants a mom or dad who is always nagging them. Look at the federal government. They are a prime example of screwing things up with too many restrictions to enforce.

I am not going to take credit for my parenting wisdom. I got my parenting style from my parents. They had seven kids. People with lots of kids usually adapt to a "survival" method of parenting. I think that this "survival" method is best. Do ONLY what is absolutely necessary.

The words of a surviving friend to her children suit this style perfectly, " I am on the phone, come and get me ONLY if someone is bleeding or the house is on fire."

LeGrand and I were laughing at ourselves the other day. Whenever we have a higher maintenance kid visit, we are always relieved to see them go back home. For the most part our girls are so easy and don't require much but the food I prepare and a good hug from time to time. We just don't "get" kids who want to be constantly in our face. They exhaust us.

Yes, we know, we've raised our kids to be low maintenance. We aren't sure if it is a good thing. Not that we are going to change it. We like our kids the way that they are. They make our life easy. Someday because of our parenting style we may be able to handle some more, and make them low maintenance kids too. We pray for that.

Some of you may think that this sounds heartless. I can hear you now, "What kind of mother are you? You don't want to interact with your kids?" You may think that we are horrible parents who don't spend time with our kids. You are dead wrong. We still spend a lot of time with them.

Our time is quality though and it is full of great conversations, laughing, learning, fun, and love. Quantity is important and I think too many parents justify their own absence by saying "When you have quality time, you don't need as much quantity." But, this justification will be used by me only in reference to the energy that is passed between my children and I. When I don't have to spend my whole day breaking up fights, telling my kids what to do, or disciplining them for what rule they broke, my time is freed up for such better interactions.

We have very little negative interaction. Most of our communication is positive. Our children are independent. They are problem solvers. They work out a lot on their own. They are confident. They are also creative.

Here is some food art that they come up with. It's a pond with goldfish, and yes, they ate every one. Some of those freaky moms out there would be upset by something like this. There were only compliments from this mother, "Wow you guys, that is pretty cool. Let me take a picture." "Ahh mom, why do you have to put everything on your blog?"

I was just reading this and it got me thinking about what Do NOT's I have as a mother.

How do my do not's affect my kids.

A friend and I were talking the other day. She has a rule that her children like to break, "Thou shalt not play in my room." Where seems to be the favorite place for her kids to play? Her bedroom, of course.

I've been pondering, "What are my rules?" Do my kids like to break them?
I have come to the conclusion that I don't have very many, therefore they don't need to break them.

Some of the only ones that I can think of are:

No screaming unless you are being kidnapped.
No eating after you brush your teeth at night.
If I count, you better come. (and they always do to the total delight of any onlooker)

Here is what hangs on our fridge. These rules are all it takes at our house.

Sophia added the last one all by herself.
We aren't sure when she did it. She didn't have to tell us. She was happy to let us find her addition on our own time. (It goes back to that giving each other space thing)
And, she's right. When you only have seven written rules, and three unwritten ones it's easy for everyone to be happy.

"A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone." ~Henry David Thoreau

Monday, June 23, 2008

An Official Declaration

Thanks to Candace Salima. I loved this video.

It needs to be shared.

One of the hardest things for me about moving to the South was experiencing prejudice for the first time in my life.

I am so happy to know that I have been a part of stomping out that prejudice.

I love God's people, no matter what color.

And I especially love the members, like Phyllis, who give our church some soul.

P.S. If you are a Mormon who is keen on Mormon culture, and you would like something else from Candace, on the lighter side, click here. I laughed.

Be Still My Soul, with some soul

This post is for Phyllis. She is my friend at church who thinks that Mormons have no soul. (She's right)

I could listen to this all day. And, my soul is still.

For those of you who are Mormon and won't be able to shake the camera that was snuck in the chapel (only in Utah), just as I was unable to shake the guitar in our chapel on Sunday (only in TN), close your eyes and just listen. And, I promise you'll be worshiping right alongside me and Phyllis in no time.

And thank you Annie, for the link.

Be proud

Do you hate going out in public in your swimsuit?

Here is the only picture I could find on my hard drive of me in a swimsuit. Conveniently, most of my body is still covered.

I know that I look downright awful in a swimsuit, but I get in one anyway. Why? Because I love to swim and I love to have fun with my kids!

My mother would NEVER swim with us. I am not sure of the reasons.

Maybe she was too cheap to buy a swimsuit?

Or maybe she didn't dare wear one from the DAV, where she bought ALL of her clothes? (Disabled Veterans Army or something was the name of my mom's favorite thrift store in Oceanside, CA - I spent literal days there while growing up - I can still smell the place)

Or maybe mom used to swim but, she gave up trying to have fun at the beach after the 4th child, which just so happened to be me?

I really should ask her. I think she may be a little afraid of the water. I cannot recall her EVER getting in the water with us at a pool or a beach.

I do recall many water fights. I mean the woman knew how to have fun, but she just had to have her clothes on.

Well, if you are one of THOSE moms, I implore you to just get in the pool. Your kids don't care. And, really nobody else does either. Let go of the gawking teenagers.

If you need a little extra motivation, read this. (you're welcome to Mindi for the link love) If you haven't read the link yet, go on, Mindi will make you laugh and give you some much needed confidence.

And if Mindi's story doesn't work, maybe mine will.

The other day while at the fountains with the kids, I took off my pants to go out in the water with Brayden, my niece Lily started to stare at me. She kept staring for about 15 minutes. I was starting to get a little uncomfortable, but kept reminding myself that she in only five.

I was relieved when Lily finally busted out with. "Emo, (this is what she calls me, it means Aunt in Korean) you have very strong legs. They are stronger than mine." Her bust out made me bust out. Yeah, they are strong alright. They've got to be so they can provide a place for all that cellulite. Well, it was nice to have that over with. Once she said her peace, she ran off to play and I could finally get out from under a child's scrutiny.

But, hey, I now know that my legs are strong, whereas before I just always thought that they were the place my body prefers to store my fat.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


We've been married 10 years and 10 months.
It's needless to say that I trust the man.
So, when the temptation was offered, I hopped on back.
Who wouldn't trust a man with a face like that?
He lured me into a sense of false security.
It was a perfect day to enjoy the scenery on the back of a four wheeler.

A dare was given.

And no double dogs were necessary.

Somewhere in the middle of all this water,

LG and I are either affixed on top of the four wheeler, or catching air.

And then, the air became very very muddy.

And, yes, I still trust the man.

And I trust that George fixed the four wheeler's damage.

And, this damage is also history.
As well as any of the other reasons
the man has given me not to trust him.
That's the beauty of a marriage.
Next time there is an opportunity for four wheeling.
You know that silly old me will be the perfect back seat passenger.
Or maybe he should show his trust in me and let me drive?

Almost Heaven

West Virginia

Blue Ridge Mountains

Shanendoah River

Life is old there.

Older than the trees.

Younger than the mountains.

Growin like a breeze.

Country Roads.

Take me home.

To the place, I belong.

West Virginia.

Mountain Momma.

Take me home.

Country Roads.

All my memories.

Gather 'round her.

Miner's lady.

Stranger to blue water.

Dark and dusty.

Painted on the sky.

Misty taste of moonshine (or hamburgers)

Teardrop in my eye.Country Roads.Take me home.To the place I belong.
West Virginia

Mountain Momma.
Take me home.
Country Roads.

I hear her voice.

In the morning hour she calls me.

The radio (or campfire songs) reminds me of my home far away.

And drivin down the road,

I get a feelin

that I should have been home



Country Roads.

Take me home.

To the place.

I belong.

West Virginia.