Thursday, September 27, 2007

The power of girlfriends

For the past several years, I have considered myself someone who really doesn't "need" girlfriends. I suspect that this comes in part from the fact that about 8 years ago I was "claimed" as the best friend of someone in my neighborhood, and to be honest, the relationship is quite draining on me.
She is the type of person who is very controlling, honestly believes that she is always right (and she demands that everyone admit that she is right) and always needs the focus on her and her current crisis - whatever that may be. She only wants to have ONE best friend. This translates into her feeling that I should accept HER as my ONE and ONLY best friend. For the longest time, she would get upset/jealous if I spent time with (or much time talking with or about) anyone else besides her. (This is the same friend who recently chastised me for being "emotionally unavailable." She is correct, I have pretty much had to become emotionally unavailable to her, because it is too difficult for me. It is too hard to try to share your thoughts and feeling with someone who isn't interested in anything except themselves and their own problems)
To be fair, I have to take accountability for my part of this mess. I am a chronic "pleaser." I am one who (wrongly) will consistently back down and let someone else have their way, even though I'm cussing under my breath about it. I believe it was Eleanor Roosevelt who said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent;" likewise, no one can "use and abuse you" without your consent. In saying this, I am attempting to acknowledge that while she may be overly demanding and controlling, I allow it - so who's fault is it really???

ANYWAY, this past weekend I got together with my best friend/roommate from college. She and I haven't really spent anytime together for a long long time. I went up north for her wedding in April, and prior to that I think the last time I may have seen her was like when Aaron was a baby (Aaron is 7 years old now.) We've been Christmas card buddies, and an occasional email here and there. More recently, we've been blogging buddies, which is the greatest thing. I feel like I am so much more involved in the ins and outs of her daily life. At least that information which is 'world-wide-web-share-able.' Last Saturday we got together and just sat and talked for several hours. When I got home, Tim asked (probably only out of politeness) what we talked about. I tried to explain to him - but the list was so random and long and jumped around... basically we talked about a whole lot of everything and nothing. It was wonderful.

I've given it quite a bit of thought since then, and I've decided that having a real girlfriend would be a great thing. I decided that that is what I use this blog/blogging community as. My way of communicating with my "girlfriends." I get to talk about the fairly mundane and meaningless feelings of my day to day life. I get the support and love and encouragement to keep trying and to do better. I get to share in the day to day joys and struggles of my friends. (and from some strangers whom I now consider as friends, even though I've never met them. Is it "phony" friendship??? That's what my aforementioned friend says. She tells me quite frequently that blogging is dumb and a waste of time and blah blah blah... Well - I don't think agree at all. It has been therapeutic for my soul. It has been a wonderful way for me to feel re-connected to the power of girlfriends. The feeling of knowing that someone out there is taking the time to read (aka listen to me) what I have to say, even if it's not incredibly intelligent or enlightening or even very interesting at times... To know that if I go a week or so without posting - someone will notice. (I know because I notice when people are gone for a long time - welcome back Harmony) I just wanted to take this post this morning to thank-you.

Special thanks to Charlotte and Melissa, who introduced me to the blogging world and who I know are there listening and supporting me with each and every post; to Candace - my new "stranger friend" from whom I feel so much support and acceptance; and to Tim - my wonderful husband and friend. (Dr Laura says we should not expect our husbands to 'talk ' with us as if they were our girlfriends... I expect that with my 'girlfriend deficiency', I've relied on Tim in that regard more than I should, but he never complains. He's a good man.)

I think that for the next little while I'll be thinking more about this girlfriend thing, and trying to figure out a way to establish and maintain some true friendships. The kind like I have with Charlotte or Melissa - where you can go 7 years with no contact, then just pick right up where you left off.

Again... THANK YOU my friends.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Italian I am not!

Yesterday I spent several hours over at my mom's house having a "ravioli" adventure. (Or fiasco, which ever you'd prefer to call it.) My mom's co-worker had brought some homemade ravioli to work one day and let my mom try one. Mom commented that they were delicious. The next day they worked together, the co-worker had brought in her Ravioli maker and recipe. She told my mom, "they're so easy to make."

Problem #1 - we didn't have a pasta maker, so we were attempting to make pasta completely by hand, and the bloomin' dough kept shrinking. We'd roll it out, it would shrink back, we'd roll it out, it would shrink back. My arm muscles are still sore...

Problem #2 - we had taken the "it's easy" to heart, and planned on making a years supply of Ravioli. Okay, not really, but we did double the filling recipe so that there would be plenty for each of us. After attempting the first batch and realizing that ravioli making was not our forte, we mixed up a second batch of dough and when that wasn't going any better we decided that we were done pretending to be domestic Italians. We used up the dough we had, then just divided up the filling to use in giant pasta shells or Manicotti. (I'm going to try it in Won ton wraps. I think it will be good)

Result - After over 2 hours of labor (interspersed with taking care of children of course), we decided that we were done, and we had about 40 completed Ravioli. We cooked up a couple of the ravioli for lunch. (They LOOKED really cute and yummy) Can you say TOUGH??? Apparently we over worked the dough AND didn't roll it out thin enough. Mom and I have both declared that we will never spend (waste) our time making homemade ravioli again.

I finally got home just in time to pick up Aaron from school, and by that time I was DONE for the day. So... I did nothing productive in my house yesterday. I got up determined to have a good productive day today, and for the most part I've done alright. Certainly could have done more, but at least I've gotten the kitchen done and a couple loads of laundry washed and out on the line. These days I kinda just have to take what I can get.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Where does the time go?

I can't believe it's been a week since I last posted. Amazing how time flies. I heard the most hilarious thing on the radio Monday. (I was going to use it as the title and inspiration of a post, but obviously I never quite got around to posting.) Anyway, I was driving Katrina to speech therapy and listening to KSL on the radio. The traffic report came on and the radio guy said, "traffic is moving at a dead stop." I started laughing, and laughed about it most of the day. I think that may have to be adopted as my new mantra for those days when I am running around like a headless chicken, yet getting nothing done... "I am moving at a dead stop."

I am loving this fall weather - FINALLY! It is warm enough to be outside working in shorts and a t-shirt, yet cool enough to be outside working. Ya know what I mean? Yesterday I spent two hours spraying all the weeds that somehow started taking over my lawn over the summer. I really am not sure what happened, but in the spring my lawn (and the neighbors on both sides) had pretty healthy and weed free lawns. (Some of the usual spring dandelions, but one round of spray cleared them out...) Anyway...mysteriously, over the summer months, this horrible little weed crept into the neighborhood and is EVERYWHERE! Since 2-4D volatilizes (turns to a gas which then floats around and land on plants that you don't want killed) at temperatures above 85 degrees, I've been anxiously waiting for cooler temps so I could get out there and spray these suckers! Yesterday was the day. (I also sprayed my neighbor's yard on one side (with permission), and about 6 feet into the property on the other side - just to give my yard a bit more of a barrier. Now I keep checking for signs of distress or encroaching death. (I'm not super patient, and I want them all dead NOW!!!)

I ordered some more plants from High Country Gardens and I'm expecting them today or tomorrow, so I'm looking forward to doing some fall planting. (I'll also be doing quite a bit of transplanting - I've acquired a nectarine tree from my neighbor, and several of my plants need to be moved to more accommodating locations. So - that's what I'll be working on for the next couple days.

Katrina had her birthday on Monday, and she got a "big girl" bike. she has taken to it like a duck to water. She's out riding it back and forth outside most of the day, and insists that we bring it in at night so she can ride it up and down the hall. I think it's great - I really want my children to have a love of outdoor activities and to be physically active. (Guess that means I need to start setting a better example eh? Oh well - AFTER the baby.

My pondering for the week: I was re-reading Sheri Dew's book "If Life Were Easy, It Wouldn't be Hard," and I really loved the chapter that says that "Christ will carry our burdens, but not our baggage." I have been doing a lot of pondering trying to identify what I'm hauling around that is "baggage" that I need to just let go. I'm also trying to identify more areas of legitimate "burden" that I need to be more willing to "turn over" to the Lord and let him help lighten the load.

Well - that's that - Talk to ya later.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Running in circles

This is pretty much how my week has gone. No earth shattering crisis or anything exciting like that... I have just felt like the faster I run, the faster I need to run. The harder I work, the more work pops out of the woodwork that needs to be done. The more I try to get done in a day, the more there is that needs to get done. It happened again yesterday, I really worked hard all day, and yet it came to be bedtime and the kids rooms were a mess, the kitchen floor was sticky, I had clothes still hanging out on the line, and I had finally lost any ability to be calm in dealing with my wonderful children. I've never really understood why hamsters, rats, etc... voluntarily get into the wheel and run - I for one and looking for the way OFF the wheel!

I guess the bright side is that today is another new day. I have tried to keep the schedule pretty open today. I am watching a neighbor's little boy for 2 hours this morning/afternoon while she goes to volunteer at school, I'm going to mow the lawn, and I need to make a trip to the post office (Tim has been selling some old books and movies online - which is great because it get them out of my house and we get a little extra play money - but it means I make frequent trips to the post office - which is not much fun for me or the kids) I suppose I should add mopping the aforementioned sticky floor to the list, but we'll have to see how it goes.

Let's see - anything to update on???

BYU game... They lost last week. It was very disheartening for me, because they came SO close to making a HUGE comeback! If only they had played BOTH halves - the game would have been in the bag. Oh well - they actually did look really good once they started playing. I'm sure they will have a great season this year.

the kids... Aaron still likes his teacher, and still doesn't like "school" (too much hard work) but his reading is really starting to improve. Katrina had her IEP for speech therapy Monday, and there was a little extra time so the teacher worked with her for a few minutes on the "c" sound. (By using a lollipop to hold down her tongue while she made the correct sound.) It was a little intimidating for her, but she was glad she endured it when she got the lollipop at the end. Bryan is coming down with a cold and as a result has been a tad bit cranky.

House guest... going as well as can be expected. It started out a little rough, and we still have days when my patience level doesn't seem to be able to expand to include one more person, but overall it is going fine.

Pregnancy... I am in week 27. The baby should be 9.6 inches long, crown to rump, or 15.3 inches in total length and weighs a little more than two pounds. I am feeling more and more "growing pains" and I am not really looking forward to the next 3 months of getting bigger and more uncomfortable.

That's about it. Better get going and get the lawn mowed before it gets to hot.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

What my superppower should be

Your Superpower Should Be Manipulating Electricity
You're highly reactive, energetic, and super charged.
If the occasion calls for it, you can go from 0 to 60 in a split second.
But you don't harness your energy unless you truly need to.
And because of this, people are often surprised by what you are capable of.

Why you would be a good superhero: You have the stamina to fight enemies for days

Your biggest problem as a superhero: As with your normal life, people would continue to underestimate you

These little tests are a bit silly, but fun. (Charlotte - I'm thinking this test is right up Eric's alley, you'll have to let us know what his power is.)

I can agree with this one in that I really AM capable of lots - but it just so much nicer to sit back and take it easy - if ya know what I mean.

I've been working pretty consistently for the last couple days, and I'm feeling like I'm ready for a nice relaxing evening, curled up with my radio and the BYU game - I'm also hoping for a nice, calm, relaxing sabbath tomorrow.

I was thinking that I had something interesting to post today, but whatever it was apparently wasn't interesting to stick in my mind long enough to get posted - OH WELL!

Catch ya'll later.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Just point me to my pillow...

Hey - are ya'll tired of hearing me say that I am EXHAUSTED yet? Well, I'm tired of saying it, and even more tired of feeling it. I spent the day today playing taxi driver from basically 9:30 - 3:30. Now I'm home and I get to start on my work for the day. (to be honest, I expect that 90% of it will be put on the "to do another day" list.) Our house guest (Nancy) needed rides here, there and everywhere, and Bryan had his 2 year well - child check up.
While at the Dr., I asked him about Katrina's arm. About 10 days ago she started crying anytime she bumped her arm, or if anyone touched it, or if someone picked her up, etc... Upon questioning the kids, Aaron and Trina said that she was running and fell down, and her arm got hurt. I asked when, but they could only say "yesterday or maybe another day ago." I have been vacillating as to whether or not I should take her in for x-rays, since it is obvious to me that something is wrong, but it just didn't seem to be either too serious or something they would be able to do anything about. The pediatrician confirmed my suspicion today, that she did fracture her clavicle bone, that it is healing, and there is nothing they really do about it except let it heal on it's own.

Can I just tell you a HORRIBLE experience I had yesterday? I had to go to the dentist. I had an old filling that had outlived it's usefulness. Apparently it was letting gunk in and the tooth was decaying under the filling. Now, the last time I went to the dentist, it took 3 shots to finally numb up the tooth they were trying to work on. This was a new dentist, he gave me a numbing shot, and within 5 minutes I could tell this wasn't going to cut it. I told the assistant about my previous 3 shot experience and that the shot I had had wasn't numbing my bottom lip or gums at all. She said, "no problem, that happens fairly often, we have this super numbing stuff that will work." So, the Dr. comes back in and gives me another shot. Soon my EYELID begins to go numb. I am not joking! The Dr informs me that my nerves must be a bit skewed in their 'wiring', but soon my lip was numb (along with the ENTIRE LEFT side of my face - from my chin, to my hair follicles, and back around behind my ear.) I had the old filling removed, the decay was deeper than they originally thought and they had to drill very close to the nerve, but luckily not quite ALL the way, then they put in the new filling. (I'll just add here to all you who have forgotten about the increased hypersensitivity of the GAG REFLEX in pregnant women - this was a real challenge for me. I was SO relieved when it was over - not knowing about the fun that was yet to come.)
I left the dentist, hurrying because Katrina had an appointment. with a speech pathologist for testing. I didn't feel great, and my numb face was very annoying. Looking in the rear view mirror, I realized that I had no control of my left eyelid. I literally could not close my eye! I was a little freaked out. I ignored it and just focused on getting Trina to her appt.
(As a side note, Trina more than qualifies for speech therapy. She tested at an 8+ year old level as far as vocabulary and comprehension, but a 2 year old (or less) in articulation. Her speech falls into the 2nd percentile. i.e. 98% of children her age are easier to understand then she is. We go in next week for her IEP meeting, then she starts weekly "preschool" (speech therapy). Hopefully we'll see improvement relatively quickly, because it is incredibly frustrating for both her and me to communicate.)

Now - back to my dental numbing nightmare. After her speech evaluation, I needed to drive Nancy on a couple errands - as I was driving I realized I SHOULD NOT be behind the wheel of a moving car. I seemed to have lost all my peripheral vision in my left eye, I was seeing a waving blurry spot right in the center of my vision, and then I realized that I also seemed to have random spots where I just couldn't see. It was scary! (I didn't feel comfortable letting Nancy drive because she has a suspended drivers license. I figured I would just stay on empty back roads and be extra extra careful. By the time we got home, I was nauseous, my head was pounding, and I couldn't see straight. I called another mom in our carpool and asked her to do afternoon pick up because I just shouldn't be driving. I took the opportunity to lie down and promptly fell asleep for 30 minutes. By about 5:30 last night, I was starting to feel a bit better, although pretty wiped out. This morning I seem to be fine again.

It was a horrible nightmare! On the positive side - it made me more grateful for my vision, and that I haven't had a stroke that paralyzed the left side of my face permanently. I guess life could be worse - right? Gotta run - it's back to school night, so I need to going!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Labor day

We worked hard to get our "laboring" done on Saturday, so that we could take Monday off and have a family play day. We had planned a day full of fun and adventure, starting with the Alpine Slide in Park City, then going to my brother's vacation condo in East Canyon to have a family get together. Unfortunately I had a really bad night's sleep Sunday night - I was up about every hour and then some - and I got up too late to get everyone/everything ready and on the road on time Monday morning. We left over an hour behind schedule - and headed up toward Park City. We decided we'd need to postpone the Alpine Slide until after the family get together since we were running so late. THEN I looked at the instruction to the condo. I had gone the LONG way. we ended up needing to go past Park City and head back DOWN Parley's Canyon to get to the turnoff. We finally got to the condo and once there - we had a very enjoyable time. We had a yummy dutch oven lunch, and the cousins had a great time playing together all afternoon. The resort had tennis courts, shuffleboard, swimming pool, splash pad for the younger kids, a playground (we never even got around to this attraction), volleyball (another that we skipped) and a little mini-golf course (after the first hole I stopped trying to enforce any type of order or rule following. I just said - go ahead, get the ball into the hole.) I played shuffleboard for the first time ever, and it was really quite fun. Tim and I played against Shayne and Mark. (two of my brothers). Tim and I had as much as a 30 point lead, and we were like 6 points away from winning for several turns. Mark and Shayne made a great comeback and ended up beating us in the end. BUMMER!

There was a stream flowing right behind the condo, and Bryan spent a good chunk of the day out there picking up rocks and then splashing them into the water. It was a beautiful setting and it was fun to hang/visit with family. The kids were having enough fun that we postponed the alpine slide yet again (much to Aaron's disappointment) for another day.

I didn't learn my lesson the first time I guess, and on the way home we also chose to take the Provo canyon route down. (Shayne told us about a short cut road that took us more directly to Jeremy Ranch, so the driving time should have been about the same either way. WELL - all the campers and travellers were on their way home, and the one lane road from Heber to about 1/2 way down the canyon was totally jammed! It took us 2 hours to get home. I WAS EXHAUSTED!!! Needless to say - I was very glad to finally get home!

And that, as they say - is the end of the story.

PS - pictures aren't actually mine. We didn't take any photos, but these are from the resorts website.