Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I haven't figured out which holidays are more draining...the ones where you spend all morning cooking and cleaning getting ready for company or the ones where you spend all morning getting everyone dressed up to be something they're not. Either way, here's this morning's picture of everyone all dressed up.

Rick is an airbender from the Avatar show, Aren is Ash - a pokemon trainer of course - and then there's Tatiana who looks more like a bar wench than Red without her hood. Oh well.

And of course Aren just asked me if he could be Darth Vadar the next Halloween. Seriously? Let's at least get this day over with before we start planning for next year.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sorry, Had to Do It

Sigh. I love Twilight and I'm lame.

I'm a Esme! I found out through Which Twilight Female Are You? Take the quiz and find out!
Take the Quiz and Share Your Results!

Cast Your Vote!

In honor of the upcoming elections I have posted a voting station to the right of this post. I've been working on my Christmas playlist, yes I've officially lost it in the world of blogging, and really want to post it, but should I? Please help me decide as my new calling as Nursery leader is slowly sucking out my brain.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Pumpkin Patch

It was anybody's turn but Rick to choose what to do this weekend and seeing as it is the Saturday before Halloween it seemed only appropriate that we go to the pumpkin patch. The one we went to was a local by the highway stand so it wasn't the most glamorous thing in the world, but it got the job done.

And now, the standard pumpkin patch pictures that all mormon mommy blogs should not be without...

This last picture is when our camera battery officially're welcome.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tricks of the Trade

As I revealed in a previous post I'm not the best stay at home mom. Although I am grateful for the opportunity and realize how lucky I am in this day and age to be able to hang out at home all day long, I admit I don't take full advantage of the situation. My house is rarely spotless, I don't take Tania to the park every day, and Aren usually never has homemade treats waiting for him after a long day at school. But there are some things I have learned, and that's how to trick Rick into thinking I do these things all day long. I know he reads this so my pretend dream is now over, but I figure his mom is a way worse housekeeper than I'll ever be so it'll be ok.

So, some tricks for you ladies who are tired and need a day off but feel guilty about it...

1. To make everyone think you have a clean kitchen, even if it's not, pour a little bit of bleach down the sink. The bleachy smell will make everyone think you've been slaving all day and even if it's not perfect, people will think that something they can't see is super clean and therefore compliment you on your hard work. This also works for bathrooms.

2. When someone asks what you did today, list each item individually. Instead of cleaning the house you, "straightened the family room then put some clothes away. Tatiana was being crazy so I tried to calm her down by letting her help fold the laundry which was totally exhausting...". You get the picture.

3. Storebought cookies get as much excitement out of the kids as homemade ones. Plus if you don't have any on hand, you can list going to the store as one of your individual items.

4. Be outside waiting for your husband with the kids when he gets home. This way even if you've only been out there for five minutes, he doesn't know that and he'll think that he owes you some time with the kids and you can go pour bleach down the sink.

5. If you're really desperate, blame everything on the baby. It helps to throw some of the afterschool cookies on the family room floor and rub some crumbs into her face. Also, take her pants off and let her run around in her diaper. Nothing says "I can't take any more of this" like a dirty baby/toddler.

I don't necessarily recommend doing all of these on the same day, unless you're borderline ready to kill your children, then by all means, use these and any more you can think of. Hope this helps!

Monday, October 20, 2008

It's Finally Done!

I've been working on a digital scrapbook for about a year now of Aren's trip to Disney World with Make-A-Wish and I am proud to say that it is finally finished. You can find it at the bottom of this page. Take a peek!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Keep Us Safe from Harm and Accident

Holy crap. Rick thought it would be a great idea to check out a canyon today and spend some time together as family. Sounds innocent enough right? So we take off to Carr Canyon and as usual I'm driving because I get car sick. We see a sign informing us that the road isn't paved and I didn't think much of it because of our time at Coronado a few weeks ago...unpaved roads but very drivable. So not the case here. The roads, if you can even call them that were horrible! Huge rocks/mini boulders paved the way and the only thing keeping us from falling off the edge were my white knuckles clutched to the steering wheel. I would have cried but I knew if I did we would die.

Once again Aren said it best when he said, "I hope we make it down this mountain...alive." We did and we even got a few pictures out of the deal. It'll be a few more weeks before Ricks gets to choose our weekend outing again.

Tatiana the Explorer

Hubba hubba


Treehugger Aren...Rick is proud of this one

Death's door

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Rick wanted me to tell everyone how wonderful he is because he's going to the Taco Bell drive thru, even though he doesn't want to, to get us some lunch.

Thanks Ricky!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Every parent thinks their child is the smartest kid ever created and I was a big part of the bandwagon until yesterday. Aren wanted to play hide and go seek and this is where he "hid". Looks like I need to build a new wagon and call it "With any luck my kid will make it college".

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

On a Scale of 1 to 10

I decided to take it down a notch from yesterday's post...really emotional and I can only handle that kind of intensity for so long.

So, seriously, be straight with me. On a scale of 1 to 10 how ridiculous is it that I'm near giddy for the Twilight movie to come out in the theatres. I've seen the new trailer way too many times to count and just can't stop thinking about it. I am seriously going to be such a loser at that midnight showing because I can just see myself bouncing up and down like a three year old does when he has to pee...except I won't be holding my tenders.

My only solace is knowing that the majority of you reading this post will be jumping around with me either right by my side or in spirit. And I guess I must give myself props for not having a countdown meter on my blog...yet.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Three Years Ago Today

Three years ago today Rick and I sat in a room with three doctors as a nurse walked in and placed a bag full of bone marrow on a pole and hooked it up to a central line that went directly in Aren's chest with the belief that this would save his life and that he would be able to be our son on this earth a little longer and grow and live like other children do.

Three years ago today I watched in awe as this bag of bone marrow made it's way through the tubing and into Aren's body and with no one telling it what to do, found it's way into his bones and decided to make a new home and begin saving Aren's life.

Three years ago today I prayed and thanked Heavenly Father for the person whom we didn't know at the time, who donated this bone marrow to help Aren live. I begged Heavenly Father to let him live. I couldn't handle the death of another child knowing that it was a condition Rick and I had passed on to him because of recessive gene we didn't know we had.

Today I look at Aren and thank my Heavenly Father for answering the pleadings of a mother who didn't deserve them. Every day I am grateful for this little boy who continues to grow and develop and learn. Every day I am grateful that he knows he is special and was saved to do a special work on this earth. Every day I realize how lucky and blessed I am to be his mother.

Thank you to everyone who has made this anniversary the doctors at Children's National Medical Center, to George Fleming, the man who signed up to be a bone marrow donor in 1987 but was never called until the summer of 2005 to save the life of a five year old boy, to my sweet husband who suffered as he watched from a distance the happenings of the transplant unfold but was always was there for me, to Lily, who I'm sure gave up her life so the doctors could concentrate on Aren, and of course to Aren, a boy who showed the courage of a man as he endured a lifetime of life changing experiences in the first six years of his life. You are each a hero.

Aren and Lily 2003

Aren December 2004

Aren During Transplant November 2005

Aren and Dr. Yurom December 2005

Aren and Dr. Kamani December 2005

Aren with Wendy Fitzgerald and Dr. Loechelt December 2005

Aren with Tatiana December 2007

Aren August 2008

Saturday, October 11, 2008

A Reminder to the Husbands

This is what I'm going to start saying to Rick whenever he says something stupid to me. Ladies, feel free, and please do, share this with your husbands.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Living the Dream

So to enhance my blogstalking skills I've joined Mormon Mommy Blogs (see the little blue box on the right). For those who are unfamiliar with it, it's just a list of random people's blogs sorted into different categories to make it easier for people like me to waste time.

I was pretty excited and waited impatiently to see what category my blog would fall into..."The Lighter Side" because I really am so funny, or maybe even "Witty Women" for very obvious reasons. Well, yesterday I received my e-mail saying I had been added to the category...are ya ready?

Living the Dream

Thud. What? Are you kidding me? What kind of dream was she talking about? More times than not my dreams are freaking scray and out of control - very similar to my life. My blog may seem tame, but you ain't seen nothing until you've seen Tania turning around in circles naked screaming "Wow!" just before bathtime while Aren is begging for "just one more popsicle, please?" as I tell him to "shut up before I throw you against the wall!" and all the while Rick is trying to watch the latest episode of "Destroyed in Seconds" no doubt wondering why he wasn't asked to work late.

We don't have a house, we're in debt, we have no garden, no savings...the list can go on. After the initial shock of being snubbed, I really did start to think about things. I am married to a wonderful man who works his butt off every day to provide for his family so I can suffer staying at home. I get to teach piano lessons four days a week which I totally love. Aren is alive and well and almost ready to celebrate his third year transplant anniversary, and Tatiana is the healthiest 16 month old I've ever seen. We may not have Lily right now, but she's here and she's waiting.

So, I guess in a way I really am living the dream. Now if only my dream could take a little turn to the right so a nice house full of money to pay off the student loans could pop up.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Save the E-Mail, Save the World

I'm trying hard to keep this blog non-political, non-debatable, just mind-numbing. But things are happening that are driving me to drink full strength Coke and Mountain Dew and I don't like it.

It's e-mail forwards.

You know what I'm talking about. They rank anywhere from, "If you don't send this to 7 people, your phone will ring in seven days and you'll die", to "Sign this petition and stop John Q. Senator from single handedly driving America into socialist hands".

Come on people. Stop the insanity. E-petitions are crap. They won't do anything to help stop immigrants from getting social security and they won't help the President know where we stand on any other issue. I'm grateful for all the information I get about fake people's fake dreams and how they've changed their fake lives and how every body needs to know and if we truly love Jesus then we need to pass this on to ten people, but guess what. I don't think Jesus has e-mail, so I don't really think it's fair to assume that my love for Jesus is directly proportionate to the number of people I e-mail. Please don't get me started on the presidential candidates. Admittedly I usually only get the stuff saying Obama is the devil because I'm republican and associate mostly with republicans, so I guess technically I shouldn't be saying this, but I'm sick of all the e-mails telling me about the "lies of Obama". Just stop already!

Seriously, if you all think that passing on an e-mail is helping in any cause, you are high as a kite and mistaken. Passing these along and patting yourself on the back for a job well done is just about as lame as when you've just had a baby and have kids running helter skelter around your house and your hoo-ha is hurting and you're doped up on pain meds and your visiting teachers leave a note on the door that says, "Let us know if we can do anything! XOXO"

If you really want to change the world, stop hitting the forward button and get out there and do something. Join a campaign or help start an initiative. Raise money to fight an incurable disease or at least walk a 5k so people think you care. Just please, stop sending me this crap. I hate it.

Oh, and as for me and what I'm actively doing...that would be nothing. I'm patiently waiting for the world to go to hell in a hand basket basket so I can see my daughter again. Now pass this link on to ten people you know or you'll die tomorrow after suffering the plagues of Moses and Jesus will know you really hate him.

I'm serious.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Rules for Grown-Ups

Have you guys seen that show Yo Gabba Gabba? It's freaking crazy. There's this anorexic looking black guy who wears an orange track suit who carries around little aliens in a 007 looking briefcase/boom box. If you haven't seen it, my description has intrigued you, hasn't it?

Anyway, Tatiana has sort of developed a like for this show. It's my own fault because I don't turn it off when it comes on. Keep your comments to yourself. Every stay at home mom who says they don't use tv as a babysitter is lying. Just because I fess up to it is no reason to crucify me.

So, where was I? Oh yeah, so Tatiana watches this show and the songs on it kind of crack me up. My favorite so far is "Don't Bite Your Friends". There are also songs with words like this, "Keep trying! Keep trying! Don't give up, don't give up!", and "Please, thank you, please, thank you, MAGIC MAGIC MAGIC!". Then there are these little kids that get on there and show you their cool tricks or "skills". This part cracks me up because they have kids who's skills are everything from gymnastics to (and I'm not kidding) making noise with a recorder while using their nose instead of their mouth, also one of my favorites.

So, almost every day I watch this, ok, Tatiana watches it while I try and clean the family room again, and I'm thinking that maybe these are really good things for adults as well as children. Like "don't bite your friends". If we adapted this even a little we could change it to, "Don't screw over your friends," or "Don't stand up your friends". Every adult needs a reminder to say please and thank you and I need to remind myself every now and then that just because I can't stand in front of a judge and plead a case or interrogate someone to get important information out of them, my skills are just as important, even if those skills include being able to pour the bubbles into the automatic bubble machine without spilling and making perfectly shaped cookie dough balls from the premade cookie dough bought at the store.

So my friends, take a minute and ponder with me the depth of Yo Gabba Gabba...ok, don't, but maybe today you could remember to keep trying and don't give up.

Monday, October 6, 2008


Wanna see what my kitchen looks like when I don't clean it for 48 hours?

There's a Difference

So I noticed something the other day. I totally dig my family...well, that part I already knew...and because I dig them so much we're usually always together, but here's the part I noticed. Even though we're always together, we're never doing anything. We're always in the same place but never doing the same things.

This weekend was different.

I made the executive decision to skip on some sessions of conference and spend time not only together, but with each other, as a family. Saturday morning we went to Art in Park which is a big booth-fest with an obscene amount of crafts just in time for the holiday season. Aren loved the fact that homemade lollipops were only fifty cents, Tatiana loved walking in circles around displays, Rick loved the food samples, and I started budgeting for next year so I could get everything I wanted.

Sunday afternoon we decided to check out some local hiking trails. We are surrounded down here in southern AZ by National Parks and we've never taking the time to check anything out. We stopped off at the Visitor's Center at Coronado National Park and they had a great kid's display where you could touch animal bones, furs, and even dress up like a conquistador. Poor Aren was loving it until the weight of almost 30-40 additional pounds got the better of him.

We then headed up the mountains on a crazy switchback road that had me wondering if my brilliant idea of family fun would result in family disaster like so many times before, but we made it and it was beautiful. There are so many people who can't stand living in the desert, but honestly, look at the beauty!

We really did have a great time. I think Aren summed it up best when he said, "Well, it did take away from my free time, but it actually wasn't that bad!"

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Tag, I'm It!

Ok, I'm really starting to dig these :)

I was tagged! Six weird and random things about me!

The rules are:

* Link to the person who tagged you (Hilary)
* Post the rules on your blog
* Write six random things/unspectacular quirks about yourself
* Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them
* Let each person you have tagged know by leaving a comment on their blog
* Let the tagger know when your entry is posted

So, here they are...

1. If I've been talking about someone and they walk into the room during said conversation, I will automatically touch my nose. Still haven't figured out why, but I do you know if I've been talking about you!
2. I can't stand the ocean. I can sit on the beach all day, but getting into the water gives me the willies.
3. I frimly believe that Colin Firth and Hugh Grant were put on this earth to make me feel better on my horrible no good days.
4. I tell Aren on a regular basis that I will throw him out with the trash if he doesn't shape up.
5. I cuss like a sailor and have no plans to stop any time soon.
6. One of my goals in life is to get a perfect score on Guitar Hero playing "Talk Dirty to Me"...all levels.

I tag


Saturday, October 4, 2008

Kids Say the Darndest Things

I love when Aren talks. He has this great little accent that is more New York than Maryland or Utah, where his parents grew up. But I must admit there are times when what comes out of his mouth, accent or not, can be a little frightening. Today is only one example...

"Dad! Come smell my hand!"


Friday, October 3, 2008

A Mother's Love

I'm a firm believer that every mother thinks their child is the cutest thing on this earth. But I am here to tell you that is not the case. Come on, you know it's true...there are some fugly kids out there. Admit it. The hardest part is admitting that your kid is not one of the cute a photo anyway.

Aren had his school pictures taken and man, I am the first to admit they leave a lot to be desired. I've got to get this kid into a real photo studio or out in nature some place so we can get a good photo of him because this one just isn't cutting it.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

What Year Do You Belong In?

Yeah, it's a little hokey, but whatever. I'm ok with that.

You Belong in 1950

You're fun loving, romantic, and more than a little innocent. See you at the drive in!

What Have You Learned?

The past few days have taught me a lot.

1. I've learned that if you don't want random people commenting on your blog, it needs to be set to private.
2. I've learned that it doesn't matter how much you want someone to change their thought process, it won't work.
3. I've learned that Tatiana really likes her books on the floor instead of neatly placed on her bookshelf.
4. I've learned that Aren will make himself throw up to get out of school.
5. I've learned that I can go to a Relief Society broadcast and get absolutely nothing out of it but the lady next to me can think that Heavenly Father was speaking directly to her.
6. I've learned that I actually do have something to offer.
7. I've learned that just because my life has not been even remotely close to what I wanted, it's not a reason to use that as an excuse to be friendless and hopeless.
8. I've learned that the friends I made on my mission are the friends I will have for life.
9. I've learned that I like watching Lipstick Jungle and 90210 and America's Next Top Model and I don't give a rat's tushy what anyone else thinks.
10. I've learned that I'm more ok with myself than I have been for a long time.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Reality Check

It's a little after three in the morning, Rick is snoring, Aren and Tatiana are sleeping soundly in their room, and I am wide awake thinking about way too many things, but one thing in particular is creeping into the corners of my mind.

I think most people are multi-faced. We have a face we put on for family, a face we put on for church, a face we put on for strangers. Lately I've discovered another face and that is my cyber face.

In the past day or two I've branched out into my cyber world and have done things I normally wouldn't do in real life. Cyber me has posted on other people's blogs about their pollitical rants. Real life me would've just sat and listened, probably rolled my eyes, maybe make a comment, but would never say anything remotely negative to their face. Cyber me has posted about someones article findings when it comes to aspartame and sounded very bitter. Real life me would probably have explained to this person her own experiences regarding autoimmune disorders and depression instead of taking a back door and talking to others about it.

It's a hard thing to balance cyber me and real life me. It's a lot easier to shove my thoughts into people's faces when I will never have to see them or even have to deal with their "comments". Hopefully I'll be able to strike a balance with this new face I've discovered.