Thursday, January 29, 2009

What Can We Do?

You aren't going to believe what else the new lead law is going to affect!

Under the CPSIA, which was passed by Congress in August, children’s products are required to undergo stringent testing for lead and phthalates. Currently, the General Counsel of the CPSC is interpreting the law to apply to ordinary, paper-based books for children 12 years of age or younger, so that all such books and product would have to be tested for lead content. Therefore, public, school, academic and museum libraries would be required either to remove all their children’s books or ban all children under 12 from visiting the facilities as of February 10.

Read the whole article here!

Can you imagine not being able to take our children to the library until they are 12 years old? And the library at children's schools being on lock down? This is ridiculous! I was already upset about how this is going to effect small businesses that sell used clothes and toys and people that make items from home that can't afford to have every item tested for lead. And now this!

Yet another reason I need LESS government in my life!

What can we possibly do to stop this?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A Wake Up Call

Ever since my recent renovation of our basement into a playroom, I have struggled with leaving the children down there unattended for short periods of time while I run upstairs for drinks/snacks/laundry and during dinner time when I have something about to come out of the oven.

I came up with a solution the other day for my dinner time dilemma. I set up Calvin's laptop in the playroom and then did a video conference with my computer near the kitchen. I could see and hear what the kids were doing and still be near the kitchen to hear the timer. Alex was so funny. He knew I could see him so he kept running up the stairs to see himself in the playroom but obviously he wasn't there!

Today, I decided to make blueberry muffins for lunch and during the 15 minutes that it took me to prepare the batter and fill the cups, I could hear the kids laughing and talking to each other. I thought they were in the basement playroom but I was wrong.

They were upstairs in our master bathroom, in the tub, running cold (THANK GOD) water. By the time I found them, there was about 3 inches of water in the tub and Alex had my razor in his mouth.

I silently removed them from the tub and wrapped them in towels. I wasn't mad and I didn't yell. I was terrified about what could have happened and with tears in my eyes I removed their wet clothes and told him to never take a bath without Mommy ever again. And that I would be devastated if something happened to them.

And then I prayed.

I thanked God for watching out for my family and for turning them away from the hot water and letting me get to them before something bad happened. And then I promised to watch them more closely.

We ate muffins with Daddy, who was working from home and then Alex disappeared from the table. Still shaken from the tub incident, I went looking for him and found him in our guest room with the mini blind cord around his neck.

LORD...I get it! Please stop testing me!

I sat down with the kids to play cars before nap time and the news was on. They were doing a segment about household dangers for children. There is a family in Utah that is missing their 18 month old son today because a TV fell on him. I realize that I have become lax with my children. I'm not being as careful as I should be and I need to do something about it.

I just spend the afternoon nap toddler proofing my house with this safety check list.

These little people are so curious right now and they can get into trouble so fast it is scary! Do me a favor and print off the checklist and make sure your house is in good order. One of my biggest mistakes is that we never baby/toddler proofed the guest room because it is a room that is never used.

And this concludes my public service announcement....I'm going to have a glass of wine now!

6 Things About Me

I have been tagged! I don't usually do the meme's. It is just too hard for me to pick people to pass them on to and so I usually just don't do anything when I have been tagged. It might make me a bad blogger....

Anyway, one of my favorite bloggers, Jen at Tatertots and Jello tagged me and this looks like a lot of fun so here it goes!

Here are the rules of this tag game:

1. Link to the person who tagged you (as I did just now with Jen).
2. Mention the rules.
3. Tell 6 things about yourself.
4. Tag 6 other bloggers by linking to them.
5. Go to each person's blog and leave them a comment to let them know they've been tagged. This is kind of a fun way to get to know people.

  1. I love to cook! I subscribe to 4 food magazines and I tear recipes out of them and put them in folders and I try a couple new recipes every week. I recently threw out about 100 recipes because they didn't fit our new healthy lifestyle.
  2. I love New York City! I have a dream of living there... in a beautiful apartment with a doorman overlooking Central Park. A more realistic dream of mine is to rent an apartment in Manhattan and spending a week there with my family.
  3. Being a Mom is a dream come true! I started planning my family when I was 12 years old and I always wanted to be a SAHM. I would have two more children if time allowed.....
  4. I have a secret crush on the guy that sings the Free Credit commercials except that I recently found out that he isn't actually is dubbed and he is from Canada.
  5. My sister is my best friend! We had a falling out a few years ago and it was the loneliest 3 years of my life. I would give anything to be able to see her everyday and for the kids to know her better.
  6. I love Martha Stewart! At least once a week...I think What Would Martha Do? I buy her books, I get her Magazines, I watch her show and I own her robe. I want to go to her show soooo badly! But I think I would crap my pants if I ever really met her in person.
Now...6 bloggers to tag!

Annie....from Junior, Mints & Reeses! She is an awesome Mom, super crafty and a devotee of the Flylady. She also has a blog about her flying. Check it out!

Bobbi...from Adventures of the Texas Blonde! Not only is she my sister, but she is super funny!

Jessica....from Lackadaisical Motivation! I love this gal so much! She is my people! And she is organized!

Connie...from Chasing Wentworth Miller! Witty! I love reading this blog because she is so entertaining and she has the best first name ever!

Shanna...from It's Shanna Like Banana! This gal has the cutest little monkeys and one on the way! And she ran a super far race while pregnant!

Cammie....from The House of No Sleep! This is a new find of mine! She is so cleaver and funny and apparently...tired!

Monday, January 26, 2009


I was cleaning up the kitchen after lunch and it occured to me that I had not heard the children playing for a few minutes. Normally, I can hear laughing, or crying, or screaming. I heard nothing.

I went to the playroom and it was empty....And then I found Bonnie & Clyde in Calvin's office.

Alex: Well Hello Mommy, what can we help you with?

Mallory: Oh poopy, how are we going to get out of this one....

Mallory: Quick, Tell her you're teaching me something!

Alex: So Mallory, this is how you order flowers for Mommy on 'the Enernet'.

Mallory: Oooooo....Let's Get Um!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Reasons Why... **EDITED**

We can't return to Colorado.

Colorado's Governor Bill Ritter wants to welcome dangerous GITMO detainees to the Supermax prison.

Because I like to keep up on current events....I rented Harold and Kumar escape from Guantanamo Bay last night. These terrorists are scary people that hate America! It is scary to think that they could end up living in the US.

And as if that wasn't enough....there is a new bill in 'the house' that would punish Colorado drivers that drive slowly and leave 5 or more cars stuck behind them in traffic. Calvin is a slow driver. He consistently drives 10-15 MPH under the speed limit and we are consistently passed by people that throw us dirty looks and fancy hand signals. This new law would result in Calvin receiving a $50 fine and 3 points off from his license.

He used to wear glasses like this guy so that people thought he was old. I put a stop to that because every time I saw him in those things it killed any chance he had of making Whoopie with me and I wanted to have kids.


I just found this old picture of Clark and his glasses!

Feast your eyes!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Only One Blog

I have been cutting back lately. I've cut back on my internet time so that I could be fullly present with the kids and our daily goings on and so that I could spend more time doing things I love to reading.

Because of this cut back, I have unsubscribed to a lot of blogs and I have unfollowed a bunch of people on Twitter. It isn't personal. It is just something I had to do. Just like in all things in my life...I had to prioritize.

And it got me thinking.....

If I could only read ONE blog, which blog would it be? I went through my list of favorites and it became very clear, very quickly.

There are so many things I love about Stacey but mostly I love how her posts touch my heart. Her writing is the best I have ever read and it draws me in. More times than not, I find tears falling from my eyes when I read her posts because her message is something I have thought or felt. She says it in a much better way than I ever could and sometimes I come away with a better understand of why I feel the way I do.

And sometimes it takes me several tries to read a post because my heart swells and I have to go hug/kiss/ love my children right that minute!

Today I read a post from Stacey that I read and re-read three times. And of course, there were tears.

Please go read Stop Thief and you will see what I mean. And while you are there...subscribe. You will not be sorry!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Viva Las Vegas

I have been wanting to take a little trip alone with my husband for a while now. It is hard to make that happen when you have to find someone to stay with your kids while you escape! So the other day when my brother in law called and said he was changing jobs and was taking a few days off in between I jumped at the chance and asked him to come to Utah. He said YES! He has successfully taken care of his cat Andre for almost a year I figured he is responsible enough to care for my children.

I called my other brother in law (he's a travel agent) and booked a weekend trip to New York New York in Las Vegas! We leave in a little over two weeks!

And now....I have to figure out what to wear! You have no idea how excited I am to shop for this little trip. I will be blogging about that journey on my shopping blog.

The last time I was in Vegas for Thanksgiving 2006. We had just moved to Utah and we met the whole family there for the holiday. It wasn't the most enjoyable experience because Alex was 6 months old and I was 4 months pregnant! Based on the little bit of the 'The Strip' that I saw, I knew I wanted to go back someday with Calvin without the kids so that we could really enjoy it.

We spent some time last night figuring out what restaurants and shows we want to see. There is so much to do and I can't wait to party like a Rockstar!

Have you been to Vegas? Do you have a favorite restaurant, shop, hotel, spa, hangover remedy?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Makin' Pizza and Breakin' Heads

My kids love pizza (they call it Choo Ta). For Christmas they bought Calvin a Pizza stone and peel so that they could make pizza together. Last weekend we decided to try it out and they had the best time! Alex was the official pizza dough roller outer.

Mallory patiently awaits her turn to do something to the pizza!

Mallory did a fabulous job at spreading the pizza sauce and adding the cheese.

Daddy loved flipping the dough into the air!

I made the Whole Wheat Pizza dough from a recipe I found in Martha Stewart's Everyday Foods magazine. It was very easy to make and tasted great! To get the recipe and see the finished HERE.

** ** ** **

Mallory has been saying something for a few weeks that we are perplexed about. All day long she says, 'breakin' heads'. It started right after Christmas and near as I can tell has something to do with the movie Wall-E. **SPOILER ALERT** I think it is because Wall-E flies into the roof of his little house thing and his eye breaks off.

This morning she was doing her best Mommy impression and talking on her faux cell phone and she said, 'HI! I breakin your head. Bye bye!' and hung up. So now I don't think it has anything at all to do with Wall-E and she is now practicing to be the first ever female Mafia Boss!

Because of this little development we were really reluctant to get a babysitter last week when we wanted to go out to dinner with Calvin's co-workers. We were afraid that someone would take it wrong and call social services! So far, so good. No one has shown up on our doorstep asking any questions. She is such a little stinker!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

My AH HA Moment!

As part of my contract with Oprah and the Best Life Series she has going on....I have been given some homework. I have never been a fan of homework. As I recall I didn't do much of it as a kid but now I'm an adult and like to think I do things by the book. My homework has caused me to think about my life and how I live it. And because I am married to an Engineer...I have to explain things in ways that he will understand.

I have been thinking alot about foundations and engines. Now, I know what you are thinking....what the heck do these two things have to do with losing weight? Well...for one thing, you can't build a house without a foundation. So, I am thinking of my eating plan and weight lifting routine as my foundation. If I eat right, I have more energy and can build strong muscles. The stronger my muscles, the better my body will burn calories and therefore burn off all of this fat that is padding my body.

Do you know what happens to an engine when you put sugar in the gas tank? The gas becomes syrupy and thick and things get clogged. I'm now imagining this same thing happening in my body. I'm a sugar addict, It's my drug and Wal-Mart is my dealer! My body can't run efficiently if I fill my tank with sugar.

I've had my AH HA moment! Oprah would be so proud of me.....

As part of my new exercise plan...I ordered one of those core balls. GNC online had them on sale and it arrived this morning. The doorbell rang and I ran to the door. The UPS man was lingering in front of my house a little longer than normal....checkin out my boot-tay. I gave it a swing and then I saw the box. ADVERTISING my purchase....he was just verifying that I need this thing.

I opened it up and read the is too small. It is for people that are 5'0"-5'5" and I am a bit taller than that. The good news is that I got the anti-burst ball and it is good to 250 lbs. I think I would poo my pants if that sucker popped while I was using it. I tried to pump it up and it was too hard for me. The up and down pumping action reminded me of something else and I immediately got a headache. My husband claims that I just need more practice and he has volunteered to help me with my endurance.

If you own an new favorite application is Lose It. And it's FREE!

In the is my favorite weight lifting song!

To see how others are improving their lives in 2009...visit The Inspired Room!

January Blahs....

This morning I woke up with it.

The January Blahs.

I'm unmotivated. I'm tired and I just don't want to do anything.

I'm usually a pretty upbeat and driven person but once in a while...especially since moving to Utah where there is cold and snow outside my door for days on end....I feel unspunky.

I have decided to compile a list of things to help beat the Winter doldrums.

Number 1 Open all the curtains! We need more sun in the house! At least seeing the sun will help improve my mood.

Number 2 Listen to some upbeat music! This morning...I chose the music from Mamma Mia. Perked me right up. And the kids danced and it wore them out a little bit so that they took a nice nap.

Number 3 Make a summery cocktail! Nothing makes me long for summer like a salt rimmed Margarita or a Corona with a lime. If you don't drink alcohol....make some Lemonade!

Number 4 Crank up the heat and put on some shorts or a swim suit! I didn't actually do this....but it is an interesting idea.

Number 5 While you have your swimsuit on....slather on some self-tanning lotion. If you know of good one please share!

Number 6 Exercise! Do some jumping jacks or dance with the kids.

Number 7 Eat some fruit and salad! That always reminds me of summer.

Number 8 Watch the movie Cocktail! Or any other summer, beach movie.

Number 9 Get together with some friends for a party or night out.

Number 10 Go on vacation to a warm location! I'm thinking Mexico or Hawaii!

What do you do when you are the Winter Blues?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Old Husband Quiz

Q. What can Calvin do while I am going through menopause?

A: Keep busy. If he is handy with tools, he can finish the basement. When he is done he will have a place to live.

Q: Someone has told me that menopause is mentioned in the Bible. Is that true? Where can it be found?

A: Yes. Matthew 14:92: 'And Mary rode Joseph's ass all the way to Egypt!!

Q: Why should Calvin use use valet parking?

A: Valets don't forget where they park your car.

Q: Is it common for Calvin to have problems with short term memory storage?

A: Storing memory is not a problem, retrieving it is a problem.

Q: Where should Calvin look for his eye glasses?

A: On his forehead.

Q: What is the most common remark made by Calvin when he enters an antique store?

A: 'Gosh, I remember these.


This really cracked me up because as my husband gets older, he is having issues with memory. He claims it isn't memory but that he has no concept of time. His theory was dispelled just this morning when he looked all over the house for his wedding ring and then I found it under his toothpaste tube.

I'm convinced that he married me so that he would have a caretaker in his old age.....

Friday, January 9, 2009

For Simplicity!

I made a new internet friend recently and I just love her blog. She mentioned that she loves the Mountains so I thought I would show her the view from my house.

It is the only thing that keeps me sane living in Utah.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

I Love a Clean Slate!

I love January.

I love how every January I'm handed a clean slate with which to take my life in a new direction. I love the excuse to buy new shoes for exercising and skin creams for my face and making plans to make our lives better. Here is my new motivation for doing as much as I can to make our lives better. I don't want to regret that I didn't do more.....

I love setting goals and making lists.

Some people don't like New Year's Resolutions because they can't keep them. It has never bothered me that some of my goals don't get met. I guess I figure I will do better next time and if I met all my goals then I wouldn't have anything to strive for anymore. I like trying to be better.

And I love, love, love when I see positive results from my attempts.

Just this week...the kids responded so well to 'school'. They are both pointing out circles and green all over the house! They are learning and I am teaching them!

My new life-long eating plan is going great and thanks to Oprah and Dr Oz I threw out half of the contents (anything with high fructose corn syrup, trans & saturated fat and enriched flour) of my pantry and fridge. I'm happy with the changes we are making and I think we will be able to stick to it. I am also reading Jillian Michael's book Winning by Losing and discovered that Calvin is a Fast Oxidizer (his body quickly turns all food to insulin and then fat) and we have tweaked his diet...adding a little more protein and a little less carb and he has more energy and is not falling asleep in the middle of the day anymore! SUCESS! Edited to add: Gosh I almost forgot my Tip of The Week...I put all of the cut veggies on the TOP shelf of the fridge so that I can see them when I open the door. This has made a huge difference in my snacking. The good stuff is not long hiding out of sight in the crisper.

I'm getting more sleep! I moved out of our bedroom and into the guest room in the basement. Calvin snores so I was only getting about 5-6 hours of sleep a night. Now I am sleeping 7-8 without waking up and I feel sooo much better. I'm hoping once Calvin loses some weight I can return to our room. Until then...we are having little trysts in my 'love nest'. A side note to anyone that visits us in the next few will have to sleep with Calvin. The guest rooms is taken.

The only goal I am having trouble with at the moment is learning that Beyonce dance. I think I need to have a couple glasses of wine before I practice. Even this guy can do it better than me.

How are you doing with your resolutions?

To see what other folks are doing to make their lives better, check out The Inspired Room every friday.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

I Did Something Right

Calvin got home late last night. We got around 4 inches of snow during the day and his commute home was long....and then he had to snow blow the drive way. The kids were anxious for Daddy to finish his work and come inside. They watched him from the window and didn't want to eat dinner....they were excited about something.

As soon as Daddy had his coat off, they dragged him downstairs.

And then they played 'school' with him. Alex brought him the bucket of GREEN items and showed him each toy and said GREEN (and Mallory said BLUE) and then they had him play music and they read a book and they cooked.

Calvin forgot to tell me that this happened until I was headed to bed. I then drifted off to sleep with a tear in my eye and a swollen heart.

I did something right!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Embracing The Moments

Time is a gift, given to you, given to give you the time you need, the time you need to have the time of your life. -Norton Juster

It seems to slip away from me. I try so hard to get as much packed into a day as I can. Not wanting to waste a minute and yet, I become upset with myself because the whole day went by and I didn't read a book to the kids, or sit on the floor and play.

There are days that I do these things. But most days....the computer or the laundry or the dirty kitchen are calling to me and I let Yo Gabba Gabba spend more time with the kids than I do.

This is all about to change.

I had the fabulous idea to create a play/craft room in our basement in an area that was going unused. It was full of boxes and was wasted space. Here is what it looked like a month ago.

And here it is now....

A desk for me to work on my stamp projects and cut quilting material on. Two shelve for the kids craft stuff and toys and the other for my craft goodies. I am planning to get one of those super cool tables and chairs from IKEA for the kids but for now...the little plastic one will do fine.

This morning was our first morning of 'Pre-School' and we had a great time. We learned about the color GREEN, counted green M&M's and we drew pictures. We made music and pretended to cook, and we read books and they took turns playing with my iPhone. Erick played Preschool Adventure and Meghan looked for new and exciting iPhone apps (she tried to purchase Crash Bandicoot but she doesn't know my password) and she sent some random person a tweet. Sorry @ericjodom!

It was 2 hours of precious time. We were embracing the moment....we played and enjoyed each other's company. No television or computer. It was wonderful!

I'm so sad for all of the time I have wasted that could have been spent in the moment with my kids. The laundry will be there tomorrow.....

Hold fast the time! Guard it, watch over it, every hour, every minute! Unregarded it slips away, like a lizard, smooth, slippery, faithless, a pixy wife. Hold every moment sacred. Give each clarity and meaning, each the weight of thine awareness, each its true and due fulfillment. -Thomas Mann

Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

The Year Ahead....2009!

Last year was a great year for our family. As this new year is beginning, we are making some changes around here. Not HERE, as in the blog here but our home and life. Changes that will benefit our family immensely.

One of these changes involves eating and exercise. We are changing our eating habits...eliminating sugar and fast food and adopting a healthy, low-fat diet. Part of the reason for this is for Calvin and I to lose weight but also to encourage our children to eat healthy meals.

And then there is exercise. We have a full gym in our basement....and we use it sparingly. This gym is going to become a regular part of our lives. We are realizing that our children are growing up fast and we are going to need to be in tip top shape to keep up with them and to make sure that they are active.

To help us with both of these goals...we have entered into a Weight Loss Challenge with Calvin's Mom and two Brothers. Starting January 4th, we will be working towards losing 10% of our body weight by April 5th. Wish us luck!

I am so excited about this next part that I could pee my pants! The room that holds our gym equipment is supposed to be a media room but the other half has held unpacked and empty boxes and random crap that didn't have a home. One day I decided (much to Calvin's chagrin) that I was going to turn that half of the room into a play/craft room. A place for me and the kids' to craft and create and a place were we can conduct Pre-School! It was perfect!

My shelves are in place and in the next few days we will set up my workspace and put all of our stuff away! I can't wait to get started on Monday!

A few more resolutions:

Read more books...I love to read and I have many books sitting here waiting to be picked up but I just don't make the time.

More massages...I had a massage a few weeks ago and it was heavenly! I need to do this more than every couple years. I am going to reward myself with massage when I lose some weight.

Take a Cooking Class...I am passionate about food and cooking is a favorite hobby of mine. I would love to know more.

Learn to ski...I have always wanted to learn and soon my kids will be ready to learn so I would like to be able to help them. Calvin is going to learn too. Plus...we have Powder Mountain just 20 minutes away.

Plant a garden with the kids. I tried to do this last year and then I thought we were moving and I let the tomatoes die. Luckily...I just got 5 seed catalogs in the mail.

Dance like Beyonce! Click here for a demonstration....I will be doing this dance at BlogHer 09! Who wants to join me? Bobbi? Click here to see what our dance will really look like.

Make more whoopee....Picture a little lovenest, Down where the roses cling, Picture that same sweet lovenest, Think what a year can bring....

Come by Girls That Shop, my new blog with my sister for a chance to win something cool!