Sunday, November 30, 2008


I'm sitting here watching the Broncos and Jets games on the television (Go Jets!) and watching the Charger game in play by play on my computer. Of course, I'm wearing my Tomlinson jersey because, well, those Bolts need all the help they can get. It's chilly outside and the leaves are falling off of the neighbor's tree into my new yard. The stockings are hung and the Christmas books are stacked on the table. I feel ready for the season.

I do not feel ready for Christmas. There is still a Kid's Play to rehearse and cookies to be baked and presents to be bought. But I love this time of year. It is, shall I say, the most wonderful time of the year.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Grandma & Grandpa

Garrett has spent the last four days playing with his Grandma DeDe and his Grandpa Gary.

Did I mention that we put him in a toddler bed when we moved here? Well, he's been getting up a little before we're ready for him. This morning he got up a little before the sun. Troy put him back in bed. About a half hour later he bypassed our bedroom completely in favor of finding his grandpa. Gary is an early bird and Garrett figured he'd just come down and make him watch cartoons. And beg him for some bacon and eggs. And get to keep his pacifier for a little longer. Grandpa's are way better than parents.

And his grandma spent the last four days playing and reading and playing and reading and then playing. Garrett decided that she needed to spend the majority of her time playing Geo Trax. I'm sure she agreed wholeheartedly.

They helped us get the house and yard ready to turn over and they shared a Thanksgiving feast with us and we watched a lot of football. At the moment they are boarding a plane and heading back to Oregon...

And Garrett is adjusting to life without his personal playmates.

Friday, November 28, 2008


We are finished. Done. Put us a fork in us. The old house is cleaned and weeded and locked and we're over it.

Have I told you lately that I hate moving?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sink Pool

Garrett and O-- are friends. Despite the fact that Garrett has a good seven months of life experience on O--, they're at approximately the same maturity level. They say about the same amount of words but O-- has him beat on the potty training front. She's not potty trained but she's closer than Garrett. His potty training is currently stalled at, "Yes, Mommy, I am potty trained. I sit on the toilet for two seconds, get bored, get up and whiz all over the floor." Anyway, Garrett and O-- behave kind of like siblings. They'll play great together for fifteen minutes and then, suddenly, her mother and I will hear World War III breaking out in the playroom. Such was the case on Monday.
Several ladies from the church had dropped by to help me settle into this house. O--'s mother came by and the two kids played happily (mostly) for awhile. They had their spats but generally they were short lived and easily forgotten. At one point I noticed that it was very quiet upstairs.

Me: They're playing awfully well together. I peer up the stairs. Behind a closed door. I start up the stairs.

At this point I slowly become aware of the fact that I hear water running. It takes a full two seconds for me to process this auditory revelation and then I say...

Me: Do you hear water running?

I simultaneously hear O-- playing happily behind the closed playroom door. Garrett, on the other hand, I do not hear. I fly toward the sound of the running water and, as I turn the corner into my bathroom I find this...
He climbed the toilet. He climbed into the sink. He turned on freezing cold water. He climbed in fully clothed. Everything within reach became a bath toy. Lotion, deodorant, dental floss, toothbrushes. If it was on the counter or in the cabinet, it was floating in the water. When I turned the corner he jumped a mile. Then he saw me, assumed I would be excited about this little extravaganza and started yanking off his clothing and yelling, "Pool! Bath!"

I told him not to do that ever again. Though I questioned his cold water bath in late November I informed him that he ought not pull those shenanigans again. But man if I wasn't trying so desperately hard not to crack up. I cannot say the same for the other adults in the house who found it uproariously funny and didn't hide their mirth.

There was water everywhere and, as I cleaned it up I watched Garrett relieve his bladder on the carpet. Oh toddlers.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving Eve

Remind me to tell you the story about Garrett making his own pool out of the bathroom sink. For now, I must go survey the situation with my still frozen turkey. For a real laugh read this blog on the same topic.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I don't really have a weak stomach. I mean, I get the flu on occasion and, as a child, I puked pretty often but I don't vomit at the sight of someone blowing chunks and few things make my stomach turn.

But today, during our Old Rental Cleaning Session, I very nearly blew my own chunks. You see we got a ridiculous list of things we have to clean. I'm not kidding. I mean, one of the things we were supposed to do was dust the plumbing pipes under the bathroom sinks. I grew up with a clean freak father and he NEVER asked me to dust the pipes. So, back to the near chucking session. As I pulled the oven out to clean behind it I discovered that the previous tenants had, obviously, not completed every task on the Silly and Ridiculous Check-Out Cleaning List.

The sides of the oven looked like they were crying thick yellow grease. Lines of coagulated liquid fat crept from the top all the way to floor. But that alone wouldn't have made me almost puke. Under the oven there were pools of grease and layers and layers of dirt and grime and hundreds and hundreds of tiny rodent poops. And a cookie cutter that wasn't mine. We never had a rodent infestation while we were living there. It made me heave. More than once.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Here Comes the Calvary

Moving to Utah was a stretch for our little family. I was leaving the only home I had ever known. I was leaving sunny San Diego and trading it in for snowy Utah. Most importantly, I was moving away from my (and part of my husband's) family.

It was this last thing that I knew would be the most difficult. I wondered who would be there to fill in the gaps, help watch our son when we wanted a date night.

This last weekend our church family stepped up in a big way as we moved from one rental to another. They helped load all our earthly possessions into a moving van and several other vehicles. Then, at the new house, they unloaded our possessions. Several men even manhandled our behemoth of a couch through narrow doorways into our new family room. It was nice to realize that while our actual families may be miles away, we have a church family that is here for us.

Today the kindness continued. Several people from church stopped by to help us clean, unpack, and hang our pictures. One gentlemen did miscelaneous handyman work that my dear husband is sadly not proficient in getting accomplished.

While our families are miles away and we miss them very much, it is nice to know we are not alone out her in snowy Utah.*

*Thankfully the snows have not come yet. For this I am still greatly appreciative.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

National Moving Month

This NaBloPoMo is proving a bit harder than last year. And last year we moved 750 miles to this year's, um, I don't even know, eight...maybe.

In any case. Our modem at the old house got accidentally unplugged during the move and we can't get it up and running again. Our new modem isn't supposed to arrive at the new house tomorrow until sometime in the afternoon. So, today, I am blogging from Troy's office in between Sunday school hour and the church service.

Oh. Boy. Am I dedicated or what?

And I have decided that, for me, November is not National Blog Posting Month it is, in fact, National Moving Month. Next year I plan on boycotting this event. I am sick of moving.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Today's the Day

Peach: Morning. It's morning, everyone! Today's the day! The sun is shining, the tank is clean, and we are gonna get out of... [beat] [gasps] The tank is clean. [yells] The tank is clean! -Finding Nemo

Okay so this tank is definitely not clean. No way. In fact, it's going to take me the better part of next week to get it clean enough to get our deposit back. It's just that when you start packing boxes you stop dusting and vacuuming. But I've got Nemo on the brain. Anyway today is the day and we are gonna get out of here. Unfortunately we like here. But we'll survive and Troy will definitely enjoy cutting his commute in half.

It's time to move.

Packing & Moving

We are heading over to the new place tonight with a truck load. Tomorrow we'll be moving most of our stuff in a moving van. We have until the 30th to turn this house over so the rest of our possessions will be moved sometime over the next week.

Also occuring next week:

Finish weeding backyard of the old place
Clean entire old place
Unpack boxes in the new place
Shop for entire Thanksgiving meal
Cook an entire Thanksgiving meal with the exception of the stuffing because my mother-in-law makes good stuffing so I am delegating that job to her. I decidedly do not make good stuffing because I think stuffing is the primary food group of the underworld. So I am glad that someone will be here who can make good stuffing and, therefore, make my husband happy.

And now I need to get back to packing and organizing and blah blah blah.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Dear Boy


Today you are 2 and 1/3 years old. Or 28 months. Or 854 days. It seems nearly impossible that it has been that many days since you first laid eyes on this world, so many nights that I've listened to you breathe, so many memories. In some ways, I know you as though you have always been here. The dip in your chin, the curve of your belly, the exact shape of your scar, the perfect sound of your voice. In other ways, you are surprising me and reinventing yourself every day. You talk like there is no tomorrow and every word must be learned today. You master skills and concepts with ease and I wonder how my baby--my newborn--can climb onto counter tops and comprehend negotiation.

You still take several naps a week but have been choosing to refrain from them often. This leads me to believe that there is a lot of me up in that brain of yours. You love your GeoTrax DVD more than Nemo right now and find "ghost trains" wherever we go. Anything with a cover suddenly becomes a ghost train and we have to watch the 20 minute video at least once a day--usually twice. You also love marshmallows and ask for them several times a day. It should be pointed out that just because you ask does not mean you receive. The day that you stop referring to them as "ma-ma-os" and start calling them marshmallows, however, is the day I say goodbye to my baby altogether.

We're moving to a new house this weekend. If someone would have told me when I graduated from college that I'd miss my five year reunion because I'd be moving from one town in Utah to another with my toddler in tow, well, I'd have been surprised to say the least. Garrett, before I left to live on campus at that institution, I had lived in two homes in my entire life. At a precious 2 and a 1/3 you will have lived in three. I'm sorry that we haven't been able to give you the kind of deep, twisty roots I am accustomed to and therefore desire for you. But, you are adventurous and I think there is a fair amount of your father up in that brain of yours as well. I tried to explain that we are moving and now, every five minutes, you ask if we can go to the new house. I think I will mourn the loss of this house much more than you will. We made the decision to move closer to the church and save a little on rent but it doesn't change the fact that we spent our very first night in Utah here. And it doesn't change the fact that you learned to talk and sprint and feed yourself with a fork and spoon in this house. This is where you experienced snow for the first time and where we brought you after you had surgery. So even if you are always looking for an adventure, I'm sorry for uprooting your little life--again. And no, honey, contrary to what you might be thinking, your "Rampa" is not going to be waiting for you at the "ew house". But we will have Thanksgiving and Christmas there and I promise to make it feel like home in a matter of days and I assure you that if you are feeling displaced, your dog and cat will be downright neurotic.

This morning, when I went to pick you up after MOPS, I couldn't find you. I scanned the room of toddler heads for that perfectly fuzzy reddish blond head. The one that smells like Johnson & Johnson's and dreams come true and, on occasion, dirty sweaty two-year-old. I couldn't find you, though. There was a sea of blond pigtails and brown braids and red buzzes and black little boy cuts but your head was no where. One of the helpers asked me who my child was. I told her that it was you. She pointed to a little boy at her feet. "He's right here," she offered. The back to me had your name on it. First and last. But it wasn't you. It was a little brown haired boy and the shape of his head was all wrong. I continued to scan the room, curious as to why he had your name tag. She offered again, "Here's Garrett. Right here." I answered her that the boy was not my son. I don't overreact in situations like that but I was starting to feel my heart beat a bit faster. Where were you and why were they trying to convince me that a different boy was you? Just then you crawled out of a tunnel where you'd been hiding and ran to me, all smiles and excitement and just waiting for the piece of candy I promised you could have if you avoided tears when I left you there. Somehow you had given your sticker to Reese. But, like I said, every part of you is emblazoned in my mind. I'd know you from Reese with a blindfold on.

We stood by the car when we left and I told you to put your hands on it while I fished for my keys. You are usually very good at this and, though it looks like you're getting arrested, it's been highly effective for teaching you not to run into the street. Until today. You stood for a few moments with your hands on the door and then you bolted. I noticed the car coming out of the corner of my eye and I screamed bloody murder for you to stop. And you did. Praise God that my shriek stopped you cold, two feet from the front of the oncoming car. Garrett John, two feet is way too close for you to get to an oncoming vehicle. My heart practically stopped in my chest and I think I very nearly went into cardiac arrest in the parking lot. And then you got an ear full. Did. You. Ever.

Son, my heart is wrapped around your little finger. Oh, there are times when I want to drop kick you across the room but, even in those times, you are my answered prayers walking around in Velcro shoes and a striped sweater. You are a little bit daddy and a little bit me and entirely yourself. I don't think I have ever been more terrified than I was when I thought you weren't going to stop. Thank you for listening when I yelled. If you could continue that trend it would make for easier teenage years. I love you more than I ever thought possible--


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Dear Utah

Dear Utah,

Thank you for your apology and I forgive you. When I wrote that last letter about getting your act together I hardly knew you would listen so well. I am pleased to discover that you are not above reproach. I respect that. Since that dismal day you have not snowed even once and I, for one, have been immeasurably grateful. And, dear Beehive State (although don't even get me started on that one), I will give credit where credit is due. Not only have you abstained from snow fall, you have had pleasurable weather in the high 50's and even the 60's. I glanced ahead at the ten day forecast and was pleased to discover that while the temperatures are supposed to fall into the 40's, there is no snow scheduled. I can only assume that this is the report you have given the weather people and, therefore, that it is your plan to take my advice on inappropriate November behavior. Thank you for caring about our relationship. I was starting to doubt you but then you stepped up and became a respectable contributor to this great nation. I figured that you would appreciate a public acknowledgement of such maturity. Don't make me regret my decision. Unfortunately, I must keep you on probation until the month is over but I am proud of the progress you've made. I care about you, Utah, and I want you to continue your Snowaholic Anonymous meetings. But, in the meantime, we can be friends again.

Miss California

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

More Crazy Dreams

I had a horrid dream last night. It wasn't so bad while I was actually dreaming it but when I woke up I realized just how awful it had been.

We got a phone call that there was a family who wanted to place their son for adoption. They were a family of four complete with mother, father, son and daughter. The daughter was little. The son was sevenish. They contacted all of the couples who had been in our information meeting. Two couples responded. We were one of them. This in and of itself is odd because, unless God bashes us over the head with a sign, we don't want to disrupt Garrett's birth order. In any case, we started trying to one up this other couple so that we could "win" the child.

He was a very large boy. Think Augustus Gloop in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. And his parents just decided that they didn't want him anymore. Other than this decision, they seemed, well, know, with their heads attached to their necks, no drug addictions, no aliens had abducted them replacing them with robots. They just didn't want their son anymore.

So then it was like an auction and we got in this bidding war with the other couple. Truly, it was ludicrous. THEN we found out that while the boy looked seven he was really 22 but he remained a child permanently in physical appearance as well as mentally. And then I decided that I was only five years older than him so I couldn't possibly be a good mother to him so I told Troy we couldn't adopt him. But then Troy was attached to the idea of this boy so we took him to Disneyland and he told us that his parents had taken his sister several times but had never taken him. It was really sad.

And weird.

But in the dream I managed to get myself really attached to this 22 year old man child. Then, when I woke up, I was kind of sad.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Uber Amazing

Crayl at Beyond Black & White gave me this blog award which was great because, well, I was sitting in front of a blank screen wondering what to post about. I decided to read some blogs for inspiration. Wouldn't you know, this is the first one I clicked on. It was also great because, well, I am humbled by what she said about me. "Mrs. Schnozeberry*, Living in a Fishbowl, our husbands used to work together, long ago, at a church in southern Ca, neither of us are there anymore... she is funny,a witty actor/director, a great story teller, a pastor's wife(complete with handbook) and PAPER PREGNANT, give her some love. (*name change to protect the not so innocent)." Ahhh. Gee. On this day of weeding and cleaning and packing and diaper changing and pulling cobwebs out of my hair, I needed the love. Thanks Crayl.

About the award:Uber (synonym to Super) Amazing Blog Award is a blog award given to sites who:~ inspire you~ make you smile and laugh~ give amazing information~ are a great read~ have an amazing design~ and any other reasons you can think of that makes them uber amazing!The rules of this award are:* Put the logo on your blog or post.* Nominate at least 5 blogs (can be more) that for you are Uber Amazing!* Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.* Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from.

And now for my Uber Amazing blogs. I'd love to nominate Crayl because her blog title alone always makes me smile but I fear that would keep this rolling in some sort of inescapable cycle. So without further ado, drum roll please...

I first started reading Missives From Suburbia when I won a Starbucks gift card from her after last year's NaBloPoMo. Then I discovered that her son is just days younger than my own son and her wit light years ahead of my own. Needless to say, I've kept reading.

My mom at Empty Nest-Full Life tells crazy stories about her children, vacations and life and cracks me up in the process.

Dena at Happily Ever After has the cutest blog design and she often posts pictures of her adorable house. Once she posted a picture of the cleanest most wonderful laundry room in the world and I realized that I had arrived as an adult. I also love knowing what is going on in the lives of her sweet family members.

I've never met Kate at Our Quiverfull but I have been following the story of her little Noah for quite some time now. He was born just a few weeks after Garrett and he, together with his family, fight for his life as he struggles with some serious health issues. Through it all they continue to praise God and inspire the rest of us.

I don't know Running Wildly personally. In fact, I usually just refer to her as "Running Wildly." I did this once in front of our mutual friend who kindly offered her real name to me. I love hearing about her adventures in nursing, motherhood, and spiders as she lives in our neighbor to the north.

There are so many blogs on my bloglines that it was difficult to choose just five. If you were not mentioned, please rest assured that I also love your blog! Also, Crayl, I have no idea who Mrs. Schnozeberry is. I am Mrs. Doozleberry. But I understand, it's a tough last name to pronounce. Even after all of these years...

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Children's play rehearsals are a lot different than adult play rehearsals. Someone starts crying or gets his or her feelings hurt on a weekly basis. If I raise my voice at someone they look like their spirits have been crushed forever and I have to do damage control. "I still love you. I just need you to focus. Can you do that for me?" Oy.

Sometimes I want to say, "Honey, what the heck is wrong with you? What are you nine?" And then I remember that, yep, they sure are. Oh the drama~

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Save Me

Two night ago I was getting ready to go see a play. Troy wasn't home from work yet and I was feeding Garrett his dinner. The stir fry that he'd devoured the previous night was now covered with, I don't know, the plague or something and Garrett wouldn't touch it. He'd skipped his nap and, let me tell you, when my son doesn't get a little rest in the middle of the day, he turns into a combination of one part terrible two-year-old and one part Frankenstein's monster with a dash of angry mountain lion. He was flat out refusing to put a bite in his mouth and, when I shoved a spoonful in during one of his open mouth screams, he looked at me as though I had just personally ended the world and then he spat it in my face.

I could feel my blood pressure rising.

I took a deep breath and tried again. He stuck his tongue out and allowed the rice to dribble everywhere before spitting the rest of the bits all over my floor. I grabbed his head between my two hands and stared deep into his eyes. "We do not spit our food out!" He answered my lecture with another round of spitting. I put him in time out.

You can lead a kid to food but you can't make him eat so Troy and I have decided that, when he won't consume what is put in front of him, he will have the option of eating a peanut butter sandwich. If he won't eat that, he goes hungry. While he thought about his actions in his bed I made him a sandwich.

I put him back into his high chair and told him to eat his sandwich. "No!" I personally picked up his sandwich and put it near his lips. "No!" I called Troy.

Me: Where are you?
Him: Two minutes from home.
Me: Good. You might find your son on the porch when you get here. I don't want to see him right now.
Him: I'll talk to him when I get home.

It should be noted that, when relaying this story to my mother she asked me if I would have seriously left him on my porch. I hope she was kidding.

I hung up the phone, turned to my son and said, "Garrett, Daddy is almost home and he is not very happy with how you've been treating me. You better be ready." I've never really done that whole threaten the kid with his father thing because, well, he's two. I hardly knew it would work at this tender age. But his eyes got big. I turned away and, glancing out of the corner of my own eye, I witnessed the following.

Garrett folded his little hands. He closed his eyes tight. He bowed his head and began whispering something to God. Something I couldn't quite hear. Something that probably went a little like this.

Dear Jesus,
Please let me live another day.

I don't know for sure but that's what I used to pray when my mom uttered those dreadful words, "You just wait until your father gets home!"

Friday, November 14, 2008

They Keep Getting Younger

This morning I had a doctor's appointment because, well, I've never had a skin check in my life and I didn't want to keel over one day and die of moles. I don't have ninety two million or anything but I thought it might be best to make sure I wasn't harboring melanoma in any of the ones I do have.

And then Doogie Howser walked in. Except he was a she. A little baby dermatologist. I guess I'm under the impression that doctors should always be older than me. This will be a problem if I live to the ripe old age of 92. But for real. I feel like really young people should only be allowed to be pediatricians. And it seems like they keep getting younger. Or is it that I keep getting older? In any case, she was very friendly and very professional. I did not get the feeling that she had been drinking at a sorority party until late last night.

And apparently, I am not dying of moles yet and any removal would be cosmetic and, therefore, cost me 95$ each.

Me: And what is the procedure?
Her: We numb the area with an injection. It's a lot like having dental work done. So you know when you've been given nova--
Me: I've never actually had a cavity.
Her: Really!? Well, you have very nice teeth.
Me: Oh. Thank you. (I really wasn't fishing for a compliment, I was just explaining that her example would be difficult for me to comprehend.)
Her: Well, so, it's basically just a prick near the area.

Then she continued to discuss the procedure and I continued to think about my precious 95 dollars and the fact that she said none of them needed to be removed. Then I thought, well, hey, why don't I just wait until I get a cavity and then convince the dentist or the dermatologist to give me a two for one...

Thursday, November 13, 2008


This morning I got a call from our adoption organization letting me know that they have received and processed our information. Our file is now considered active which means we will be shown to prospective birth mothers.

My heart may have skipped a beat. My chest tightened the way it does when I'm hovering on the brink of something extremely life altering. My mind started screaming through scenarios that involve a child coming to live with us before Christmas even though I know this thought is as improbable as it is optimistic. But that's what this adoption process has started doing to me. I have to remind myself to be cautiously optimistic. In my normal, every day existence, I try to curb the intense level of pessimism draining from my pores. But, in the here and now of this process, I have dared to let myself really hope.

I'm sure I've mentioned before that Troy and I had a heart for adoption before we ever knew that biological children would be, well, difficult for us. I think we both recognized the biblical call to adopt. I don't think that it's God's plan for everyone to adopt but I do believe it's extremely important to him. In Ephesians 1 it says, In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will.

Genesis 15:3 says And Abram said, "You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir."

Romans 8:23 says that we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons.

James 1:27- Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Romans 8:15- For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father."

John 14:18- I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you.

This is how I know that I will love a child born not of my own body just as much as I love Garrett. The way he stares at me now, with those deep oddly colored eyes, the same way he stared at me in the delivery room, my heart feels like it's going to burst with love. But it's my heart that feels that joy. It isn't my uterus or my ovaries that leap with adoration. I can't wait to stare deep into the eyes of my next child and feel that same depth of love.

And now our file is active. Praise God!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


We're not moving this weekend.

In fact, this whole move has become an ordeal. Not that moving in and of itself isn't an ordeal because it is but, frankly, this one has become rather precarious.

The people we are going to be renting from are still living in the house that we are supposed to move into. They are buying a house south of here and it still hasn't closed. We're still praying that it actually will close but the closer we get to the end of the month the more I am trying not to worry. We have to be out of this house on November 30th because new renters are moving in on December 1. Technically speaking, we need to be moved out early on the 28th because the carpet cleaners are coming at 8:00 am.

I have a signed lease agreement so I am wondering at what point I need to start looking for something else. I mean, I've been checking on the classifieds page but I really don't want to be living in my husband's office with all of my stuff in the church parking lot because I wait too long to really, truly, officially start worrying.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Miter & Chopper...I Don't Think So

So I was on the Geo Trax website and, apparently, they already have names. Or, at least, most of them do. We already knew Will's name. "Daisy" and "Starbuck/Biss Guy" are listed simply as passengers but the rest of them...

Choo-Choo's given name is Eric. This may devastate my son. McFly is apparently named Opie and, as we were watching the Geo Trax DVD this morning, we discovered that he speaks with a serious southern accent and doesn't act like he's stepped out of Back to the Future at all. Tree Guy and Axe are known as Miter and Chopper.

I think we'll stick to the names we've given them.

Monday, November 10, 2008

What's In A Name?

Garrett loves and adores his Geo Trax. If I wanted to hoist them up into his bed every night, I'm sure they would replace his beloved blankie as his most favorite thing to cuddle with. Currently, we have seven of the little people that go with the different Geo Trax sets. They are tiny and Garrett often plays with them with various other toys so they go missing quite often. We've given them all names so that, when we're looking for them, we can ask Garrett if he's seen specific Geo Trax "guys". Garrett named some of them and I gave the others their names. They are as follows:

Daisy: The only female. She is holding flowers.
Will: The actual name (on the box) of the burly mountain man.
Starbuck/Biss Guy: I refer to him as Starbuck because he's holding a coffee cup. Garrett thinks he is holding juice and refers to him as Juice Guy.
Axe: He's holding an axe. Don't worry. He came with a logger type set and is not, in fact, an axe murderer play thing.
McFly: He looks like he stepped right out of Back to the Future.
Choo-Choo: Garrett named this one because he is the driver of the main train.
Tree Guy: Garrett also named this one. Apparently Troy referred to him as Tree Guy once or twice because he's holding a tree. I tried to get him to name him something else but he was dead set on Tree Guy. He happens to be Garrett's most favorite Geo Trax figure.

Last night we were talking to Garrett about how maybe, one day, he just might, possibly, get a baby brother or sister. We have a girl name picked out but only have our boy name narrowed down to three. We gave him his options.

Me: Garrett do you want to name a baby brother Thaddeus*?
Garrett: No.
Troy: How about Wolfgang*?
Garrett: NO!
Me: Moon Unit*?
Garrett: No.
Troy: Well what do you want to name your possible, one day, maybe, baby brother?
Garrett: (emphatically) Tree Guy!

"Hi, it's so nice to meet you. These are my sons, Garrett and Tree Guy."

*Not actual possibilities for our maybe, possibly, one day, son.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Last night we were blessed by the church secretary, known, when she comments on this blog, as "J", and her husband who, to carry on tradition, will be referred to as "K". Whenever one of J and K's children announces that they are pregnant, they get them a gift. J explained this to me as she handed me a gift bag.

A few minutes later Troy and I pulled a package of Onesies out of the bag.

Despite my post about how I feel pregnant, there is a huge part of me that feels very unpregnant. We certainly haven't yet been chosen and the pessimist in me wonders if we ever will be. Even if we are chosen, the birth mother could change her mind. Something could go wrong. These reservations help me to hold my excitement at bay.

But then I get a package of Onesies and it's as though the child leaps inside my heart. Then I start thinking about how we could be chosen. The birth mother could decide not to back out. We could get a baby soon. We could have one in the next few months even. This line of thinking is extremely unlike me. I like to prepare for the worst. I like to think it will be seven or eight years before we're picked. But then I hold a package of teeny Onesies in my hands and I feel like I might just be able to will someone to choose me. I feel a level of excitement that couldn't be more real than if I had an actual due date.

"Pick Me," I scream on the inside. Choose this family. We have Onesies!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Those Dreams

Do you ever have dreams where you've gotten out of bed and are getting ready and it all seems to be happening in real time and then, when you actually wake up, you're bummed because you feel like you have to do it all over again?

This morning I got out of bed, got dressed, did my hair, had a phone conversation with my mom and then built a theatre set. And then I woke up and realized none of it had actually happened. You would have thought that the phone conversation I "had" with my mom would have tipped me off.

Mom: Are you going to do a church play for the Fourth of July?
Me: I have no idea. That's a really long ways away.
Mom: Well, are you?
Me: I've never done a Fourth of July play before. Why would I start now?
Mom: I'm just wondering.
Me: Why?
Mom: Because I want to see it but I want to go on vacation in July.
Me: Go ahead and plan a vacation.
Mom: Does Garrett like Gears?
Me: What?
Mom: Does he like those gears toy thingies?
Me: I...well...he doesn't have any so...I...don't...know.
Mom: So, what kind of play would it be? You know, so I can plan my vacation.

It made no sense. None. And then after that I constructed an entire set. I sure was sad to wake up and discover that I'd actually been extremely unproductive.

Friday, November 7, 2008


My child is deathly afraid of smoke detectors. It certainly doesn't help that ours go off all the time. If I so much as open my oven door when it's turned on, the alarm starts screaming.
Last night it went off while he was asleep and it took his daddy sleeping on his floor to make him fall back asleep. This afternoon it went off for about a half hour straight. Let's just say I got a good long cuddle session out of his fears.
And when it was all over, the brownies were burnt.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Please Note

I have an announcement to make.

Early this afternoon I went to the post office. I put our three letters of recommendation, the remaining $2450.00 of our listing fee, our pages and pages of paperwork, our "Dear birth mother" letter, our picture collages and a copy of our home study in the mail. I have a feeling the postal worker thought I was slightly crazy because, as I stood in line, I closed my eyes, laid my open palms on the top of the envelope and prayed silently for that one woman who might see it and feel a leading to place her child into our lives.

There are things I can do. I can do an addendum to our home study once we're settled in the new house. I can research lawyers. I can pray. For the most part, however, it's completely out of our hands.

I feel pregnant.

I know how crazy that sounds and it isn't like I'm heaving my guts up or experiencing searing round ligament pain or craving chocolate covered pickles. But when I was pregnant with Garrett it was all I thought about. I wanted to talk about the baby all the time. I worried that people were getting annoyed with how often I discussed the child within me. I feel that way now. The difference is that, this time, I don't have a due date. Someone could choose us in two months or someone could never choose us. It's as open ended as that. But I feel completely wrapped up in this child within--even if it's only, technically, on paper. Even if it's only within my heart. There is a small part of me that feels sorrow over the lack of maternity clothing and the glow that people speak so fondly about. But only because, now that the packet is on its way, I want to shout from the rooftops that we're having a baby...someday.

I am pleased to announce, however, that we are, indeed, Paper Pregnant: Adoption In Progress. And now we wait...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

You Have Got To Be Kidding Me

It's almost two in the afternoon. I just took this picture from my front porch. Believe me when I tell you that this morning, there was a lot more.

Dear Utah,
You're kidding me, right? I give you a compliment on my blog, I tell you how much I like your fall, and then you behave like a defiant little two-year-old and you turn fall into winter. Trust me, I know two-year-olds and that is exactly how you are behaving. If you don't wise up, I promise that I will stop talking nice about you. Oh it's not that I didn't enjoy many of the snowy days last winter. It's not even that I didn't like having a white Christmas because (gasp!) I did. But I most certainly did not like having snow from the day I moved until the 1st of May. And I am not entertaining the idea of having snow from November until May this year. I don't care if this is just what you do. It's unacceptable behavior. If this is the way you feel you need to behave, pack up and head to Anchorage. Or Iceland. Oh sure, I'm not the premier voice on the four seasons but I'm fairly certain that they should be divided evenly between the twelve months of the year. If you are choosing to enter into an agreement with winter, let it be stated that the arrangement will be terminated on February 5, 2009. If you'd like to snow into March, you'd probably better back off. It's not that I don't think you're attractive--beautiful, even--because I do. It's just that I went through a very painful separation from sunny, 78 degree, San Diego weather. You went and waved these gorgeous fall days in my face and I feel as though you pulled off the bait and switch quite well. Kudos to you, Utah, for bathing me in autumn and then throwing snowballs at me. I will wait here for your apology.

Miss California

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election/Anniversary Day

I voted by absentee ballot and I just want to state, for the record, that I did not vote for my husband as was previously contemplated on this blog. I certainly considered it but, in the end, I decided that this is too important of an election to throw my vote away. Let me also state, for the record, that I do believe a third party vote during this particular election is ignorant. You can go ahead and vote third party if you want to. We can even still be friends. You can disagree with me entirely. But I really feel like this is one election where a third party vote is a very silly vote. And this is where I climb down off of my soap box and let the ballots do what they will. Oh, who am I kidding. This is where I step down off my soap box and let the electoral college do what they will.

Dear Mom & Dad,
Happy 30th Anniversary. Thanks for getting married and thanks for deciding to have me and thanks for doing it in that order. You've been a fantastic example of what it means to dedicate your life to someone until death separates you. Thank you for arguing on occasion, so that I didn't have incorrect views of marriage. But thanks for never throwing things at each other or leaving or threatening divorce. Thank you for agreeing on how to raise a family and for growing, all the time, in the Lord. Thank you for all the sacrifices you made on my behalf. I know it would have been easier to forget children altogether and spend your extra money on lavish vacations to the Swiss Alps and Barbados. Thank you for choosing to raise a family and go on camping trips instead. Thank you for the legacy you are creating. Thank you for keeping your vows--those same vows that starting breathing with Jon and me and now Garrett. I hope that you have a wonderful anniversary and I love you very much.

The Oldest

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Move

I've received several questions about our move. I figured now would be as good a time as any to address them.

Where are you moving? And when?
We are moving to Hawaii. Kauai to be specific. We've decided to become professional surfers. Given the fact that I've never even been on a surfboard, it might be a problem. Seriously, we are moving north. We will still be in Salt Lake County but we'll be closer to the church. The house is just a little smaller. We will lose almost all of our storage space though. Our rent, however, will drop. We will be moving between the 15th & 20th of this month.

Did you buy a house?
I wish. Unfortunately we still own the albatross in Ramona and are in absolutely no position to purchase a home here.

Why are you moving?
We love the home that we are in and we love our neighborhood. However, our rental company (at the wishes of the home owner) was not willing to extend our lease and we were on a month to month basis. Not only were we uncomfortable with the fact that the owner was considering moving back in at some point in the future or putting the property on the market, we were also worried that we might be told to vacate during a particularly busy ministry month--say, December. All of that on top of the fact that we needed to find something that was a little cheaper (because of the fact that our California home never sold) led us to look for another home. We decided to look closer to the church. Our new home will be about 10-15 minutes from the church depending on traffic whereas the one we are in now is 18-25.

Are you excited?
Um. I hate moving. I love this house and this neighborhood and I love living near a particular family in my church. I love my WalMart and my Dollar Tree and I don't want to get new ones. But it does feel a bit like college where I moved every year and got to decorate and get ready for a new chapter in my life. I'm really hoping that we will be blessed with a second child while we're living in this new house and that we won't have to move for awhile. In that regard I am excited. I am also excited that my new basement will actually have heat.

I'm a little stressed because of adoption/children's play rehearsals/packing/having Thanksgiving at my house for the FIRST TIME EVER FOUR DAYS AFTER I MOVE/moving but I'll survive. Thanks for asking.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I love fall.

Who knew?

I certainly didn't because, in Ramona, fall is summer and winter is fall. In the final months of the year, leaves do let go of their trees and dance to the ground but the weather is still warm and the word brisk doesn't really come into play until December. But here in Utah, the days are comfortable and the nights are chilly. I wear jeans and I turn on the gas fireplace in the mornings and evenings. Children can still play outside and the trees are alive with reds and oranges and yellows.

Before we move, we have quite a bit to get done around here. There will be a hefty amount of stress in the next couple of weeks. But I'm feeling cozy and I know that there is still time to sit and watch the leaves fall before we rake them up and say goodbye to this house.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

All Hallows Eve

When I was a kid, I loved Halloween. Call it the future theatre major in me, always happy to take on a new role. Call it the future sugar junkie in me, always happy to overdose on sweets. Call it what you will but I loved Halloween. Then I grew up and was too big to go door to door and too cool for playing dress up unless a stage was involved. And then I had a kid.

First, at three months, Garrett was the sweetest little lion you ever did see. Then, at 15 months, he was the most adorable pudgy dragon. This year, at 27 months, he was a pirate. He borrowed a costume that my brother wore some 21 years ago. Complete with a stippled scruffy beard complements of my make up kit leftover from my theatrical college days. He was a very grumpy pirate because his mother woke him from his nap. He didn't want the hat on. Or the eye patch. Or the pants. And I forced them upon him, uttering something along the lines of, "You'll be a pirate and you'll like it. And when you're sixteen you will put on tights and star as Romeo because I'm going to push you into show business if it's the only thing I ever do!" Alright so, that's not what I said. I said something about it being fun and oh how I promise you'll like it and you'll get candy and, hey, do you want to wear make up? This piqued his interest. Unfortunately, despite the extreme cuteness of the beard, it photographs as though my child was just insanely dirty.

We went over to Jordan Landing with some friends. Despite the fact that all the other children were girls, Garrett insisted on referring to them as Da Boys. I think, being that I am the only girl in this house, Garrett is a little misinformed on gender. In any case, we had fun collecting candy from the businesses. He got many a compliment about what a good looking pirate he was. Any time he could choose a specific piece of candy he took forever contemplating which one he would choose. In the end, every candy that he chose was pink. At one establishment he dug deep into the bowl and retrieved a pink Tootsie Pop. Without my consent he peeled the wrapper off, stuck it in his mouth, and went to town sucking that delicious ball of sugar. When we finished up at Jordan Landing, I took my little pirate through the drive-thru at McDonald's and headed over to the church for the Harvest Festival. He had a blast playing games and hanging out with other kids. I think he ended up enjoying his pirate costume and he ungrumped rather nicely.

There is just something magical about being a kid on Halloween. And something magical about having a kid on Halloween. And something magical about the fact that he can't eat all the candy...but I can.