Monday, March 31, 2008

Mundane Moments

Alert: This blog is for me, no one else. It will probably be boring and long. Spare yourself.

Life right now is good and I can't complain. Often times I still do, I don't know what it is in my nature or nature in general. Nothing bad is going on, as is nothing over the top good, minus the house thing which I have already talked myself to death about. I really have nothing to write about, yet I find myself wanting to write. I guess I have a need to preserve the moments that feel so absolutely minor as well as major.

The things on my mind right now are random at best starting with Bella and her constant hearing dilemna. It has become such an annoyance more than anything that with each particular ear infection she temporarily is losing her hearing. Once the congestion subsides so does the loss of her hearing. I suspect she may need tubes, but being raised in a family where modern medicine is rated as overly used, I keep waiting - hoping for her body to right itself.

The boys are good and becoming such cute playmates. I enjoyed an especially fun hour or so with them last night after dinner. I got hit with plastic bats and karate chops and kicks. We did a lot of running in the house circle. It was so loud with squealing, but it just reenforced my feeling that this was a world of good for them and me. Truly a bonding moment with the boys.

Dakota, Dak, Kody, the man with many names is still doing so good. There is no clear name for this boy yet. Everyone keeps trying different ones out in hopes that something will just suit. I think he will be a Bella, who depending on the context of the situation will lend to a different nickname. Only just this past week did Bella tell me upon being asked that she probably perfers Bella the best. But she doesn't mind being called all the others. Anyway...Dakota continues to sleep so well. He is so happy, mellow, and easy. He does wonders for me in that our relationship is so comfortable. I don't have to do much to entertain him. He is content to sit or play or watch. I have never had a child like him, Wyatt comes close, but even Wyatt's mellow nature couldn't compare to Kody's. It makes me both worried and excited about what our other future children will be like. He makes me think, foolishly, I can handle more. We'll see, one day at a time.

As for Travis, he is my light. I had a horrible dream the other night that he died. The first that I remember like this. And I don't know how he died and that wasn't important, but the feeling of loss I had was so overwhelmingly enormous. In my dream the anxiety was so real and palpable. It was suffocating and I cried until I couldn't breath. When I woke up I just felt relief. It was such an eye opener. I have never believed Travis was anything but the best, except in proud and stupid fighting moments that lasted minutes before my ridiculousness was realized. But it once again deepened my appreciation for him, for our love, friendship, and bond. And although in my dream I was worried about life, finances, and realistic worries, I was beside myself with the loss of my best friend.

This is the man who when he goes to work a little piece of me goes with him. I feel sad each day when he leaves and excited when he gets home. I miss him. I never felt like without him I wasn't whole, but in my dream the reality hit. I am dependent on him. Me, someone who prides herself on independence, might have a little more need for him than I thought. After building my life around him for almost nine years, the thought of him not being there reminded me of the collapse that would occur. Life as I know it now would not exist. Sure I would live, go on, but it would be rebuilding something new from scratch. Maybe that is because I was so young when we started dating, 17, but we are intertwined.

Anyway...enough of depressing thoughts. At the temple the other night he said the most beautiful thing. Neither of us are very poetic or sentimental, but he said if I died it would take him a while to get over me. And although that is not much to most people it was the world to me, because of the intensity he said it with and because of the context, which would take to long to explain and almost cheapen the moment.

As for all else, I have recovered my long lost best friend, Deb. I love spending time with her again after years of irregular visits. She works night shifts and so I go spend the first few hours with her. Last night from nine to midnight. It wreaks havoc the next morning, but worth it. She is the girl version of Travis. She helps me see my potential, builds me up, and mellows me out. Last night she retaught me the value of not being judgemental. Something I know logically, but can't seem to apply emotionally in my day to day life. She is a gift.

I am overwhelmed with the love my Heavenly Father has for me. My husband and friends are the greatest people in the world, that I have ever known. I feel like I am not on the same level as them, but am glad they still want to be married to me and friends with me. Candice if you got this far I am thinking of you too and miss you. Move to PA and lets pick up where we were. As for my family they are the funniest and funnest people to be with. And with all that love and emotion comes a fair amount of drama, but 99 out of 100 days I welcome it just so that I can feel the intensity of their love.

Conference is this weekend and I feel excited. It is very bittersweet. I am annoyed at the inconvenience of not being in Utah and having it on NBC. Some people say it is on cable, some say it is not, some say all the sessions but Priesthood are airred others say just the Sunday morning. I am torn between what my actions should be considering every potential outcome. And Bella has a birthday party at Chuck E' Cheese on Saturday at noon. The time for the first session to start out here. I am letting her go, because I feel like she needs this, but am sad that I may miss that first session. Hopefully it is on cable and I can just DVR it. Man is that the coolest technology ever or what. I have become totally spoiled. Eeeks.

Well I must make dinner, get the house in order, finish chores, and get the kids set for the evening and prep for Family Home Evening. I told you this would be boring, but hey it's your fault you read on. I love my life even the dull moments.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Goodbye to Days of Old

Living with my Mom has been many different things to me: a test of patience, a lesson in service, the gift of humility, but more than anything it has been learning to say goodbye. Some days I am gripped with sadness as I remember a childhood that once was filled with good memories and happiness.
I look around to see that things have changed, aged, and decayed. The sunporch is rotted out, the garage roof crumbling, patches in ceilings throughout the house, doors with shredded wood, and dilapidated out buildings. This house was once beautiful, well kept, and filled with life. I look around now and I see peeling paint, neglect, and hopelessness.

I can only change so much while I am here, but one thing we worked on was the removal of the old chicken house, aka "love shack" for James and friends. It was rotting in on itself and so Travis sawed the walls down and in. We lit the remains on fire and I watched with sadness at just another reminder of what was and will no longer be. I can't turn back time, nor would I want to most of the time, but I am filled with longing for the physical reminder of good times.

The blaze was big and beautiful and being somewhat of a pyro a bit of an adreneline rush. It was then that I was reminded of the reality that matter is neither created nor destroyed. It is and will always be and so the chicken house is and always will remain in my mind. The tender childhood moment of learning to work is now replaced with a memory of service and a big pile of ash. And although it doesn't sound nice it sure feels nice.

The pictures are once the blaze got small enough that I didn't feel sick to my stomach with nerves. It was at least three times this big.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

My House My House

Something good said once is still good, but something good said twice, well it must be fantastic. I can't believe it is almost here. They say the house will be done in five weeks. We'll see, but I can't imagine them dragging it out too much longer. But then again they are builders. Anyway we'll probably finish out the school year here with Mom and just live there on the weekends and unpack slowly. Can't wait. I am a little nervous though to have such a new house, because it will mean every ding, dent, paint scratch, and additional mark was made by me or my kids. No one else to blame there really. I guess I will survive through it though somehow.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Easter Finally

Not that my life has been busy. It hasn't, but when I am stuck in the middle of a book I can't be bothered to do the little things. All through each day since Easter I have thought of updating my blog by posting Easter pictures. But then fail to do it as reading is the priority. So here is Easter, late but beautiful as ever. Just like the family that is in these pictures.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Dying Eggs

So we always try to dye eggs on Saturday and all seems to go wrong so this year I decided we would dye them on Thursday night. Well it turned out Thursday night was the Relief Society Birthday Enrichment. Then on Friday morning I open my dollar store dye kit to find that it doesn't actually contain any dye. Just fluke bad packaging.

I run into Spring Grove to the dollar store to replace it. I look in the box to verify it has dye before I leave the store. It's there. I get home to start. I get my six cups assembled, add the vinegar to five, none is supposed to be with the pink. I start tossing the dyes that are for sure not pink in the cups. It turns out there are two blue dyes no purples.

Then I get down to two that look pink, well red actually and they are slightly different. So I know one is and one isn't. After much detective work I deduce the pink one throw it in the nonvinegar solution. It turns out to be orange. Pink is now in the vinegar turning to sand grit that is dropping to the bottom without disolving and dying the water at all.

I call it a loss and pour it out after mixing it with still no success. As I rinse out the cup there is enough granules to dye the plain water and we get pink. Best case scenario we got the eggs dyed early. Worst case it was still one big problem after another. Good thing I am a best case scenario girl. Pictures and Videos attached.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Happy St. Patricks Day

As promised my holiday post goes to Bella. A little late but better than never. So in school they were given the assignment to make a leprechaun trap for show and tell. I knew this was something her dad would have to help her with since I have no talent in the creativity department.

They set off to work, and quickly they hatched a plan. The general concept being that leprechauns like gold and therefore seek it out. We purchased some gold coins, candy oriented, at the store. We put them in a container with a small leprechaun sized hand hole opening. Once in the hole there was a net that kept him from retreiving the gold, but upon trying to pull his hand out there were toothpick spikes angled inward impaling the tiny leprechaun hand or keeping him from trying to get away. This whole contraption is bolted and tied off to a heavy piece of furniture, so he can't run off with the whole kit and caboodle.

Now although this trap has a few loopholes for my far too practical eyes, I loved her idea and ingenuity. Here's to schools promoting leprechaun traps. Enjoy.

Guilty Pleasures

I'm a loser. I admit it. I love reality tv, but more than anything I love The Bachelor. I know I should be ashamed, but I'm not. There is something so amazingly fulfilling in watching this show. For those of you who don't watch and don't live on this planet, it is where a man, typically, is given 25 women. He dates them all slowly eliminating them until he is left with two at which point he -optimistically or crazily- proposes to one of them. All this in about six weeks I believe.

So I know that this is not actual reality as my mother pointed out in very serious tone and manner in which she assumed I thought it was. But here is the thing, I do think some of it is real. As the premier showed last night I watched enthused, poised, ready to mentally absorb as much as possible. And in my estimation you can't fake that kind of "trashed" that the one blond contestant got. Also who really slips their panties into a man's pocket/pants? Fabulous - what more could you want.

Well if you really want more the highlights included: A first time ever International - British - Bachelor, a girl who hiccups when nervous, the drunk/panty slipping blond, the not so famous actting daughter of Lorenzo Lamas whose intentions are pure for love not fifteen minutes to jumpstart her career, an Oklahoma native who thought she antied up by biting a chunk of metal out of a beer can (perhaps my very favorite moment), a 30 year old prematurely aging girl who broke into ridiculous dancing, a clarinet playing red head, a guitar playing/singing Florida girl who perhaps just walked onto the show from the trailor grounds, etc...

Now really who couldn't love this show. And although I think it is editted, staged, and bad behavior encouraged, each time I see it I see reality too. I see glimpses of girls I went to college with, knew in high school, moments that I fear I may have or currently engage in despite their ridiculousness. But in the end it just does a lot for my self esteem. No need to feel bad when you look at the other girls out there in the world in my age bracket or otherwise. Although a lot of these girls may have looks on me, no worries - I don't think I am shabby in that department either-, because what they have in beauty they lack in every other areas such as tact, class, intelligence, wit, ability to hold their liquor.

Oh the world really does seem such a happier place today with my new found wisdom and boost. Life with The Bachelor is glorious.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Happy Birthday Bella.

Bella the beautiful -

This is for you though I doubt you'll read it anytime soon.

My heart is full when:

* I look at you waving and blowing kisses and hugs from the bus stop,

* You dance around giving a countdown to your birthday just like me,

* With excitement you let me know that you can have whatever you want for breakfast because it is your birthday,

* You show off your leprechaun trap (see upcoming post on March 17th) excited with your invention,

* And when you do nothing at all.

You are a reminder to me of my greatest self and my most potential. Because in you I see the best of me. And pressure like that shouldn't lie with a child, and I hope you never feel it, but there it is. All my quirkiness, eccentricities, and passions are still pure in you. Here is to your purity at six and -wishful thinking- forever. I love you.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

To Daylight Save or Not

I have to admit I was one of the biggest fans of the lengthened and hopefully soon to be permanent daylight savings system. That is till now. I am tired. So tired. I know I lost an hour of sleep this last week and that is a lot for someone like me who treasures every single minute of sleep. It's not just that though. Each morning I am setting an alarm to wake Bella up for school and it is still dark, each day gets better, but originally it was pitch black. And I am not one of those people who is good at waking up if the sun hasn't done so yet.

Call me crazy but I also think it has to do with Kody sleeping the whole night again. I know - she's nuts you're all thinking and it's true - I am. But hear me out. Every mother knows the zombie like state you are in when you are up all night. To some degree though I feel like your body compensates or HF gets you through it in a daze that is aware of the sleepiness that exhausts even your bones, but your mind is off on a vacation and doesn't quite process it.

Well now that Kody is sleeping all night again ten plus hours every night - hooray - those six months of sleep deprivation my brain is all to well aware of. And it is taking it's vengence like a crazy, rabbid animal looking to make other animals as crazy as it feels. I can't get enough sleep. I sleep a minimum of eight hours a night, once Bella is on the bus I go back to sleep till the boys awake a half to full hour later, and I am napping everyday.

But I am bedraggled, exhausted, and moving like a snail on downers. Help me. So the last thing I need is to be forced to wake up in the dark. But still I get behind the daylight savings thing and just hope that my body remembers its youthfulness and rebounds quickly.

Monday, March 10, 2008

It's Not Too Cold

My kids, but especially boys are insane. In this drafty, older house with antiquated heat I wake up every morning a little chilly and anxious to stoke the fire just like when I was a child waking up for school. But each morning I walk into the boys room to see them stripped out of their pajamas and half naked oblivious to the cool draft floating around their little bodies. Excited to eat they run downstairs this way unless I stop them. But a couple of weeks ago I couldn't stop them because I had to take these pictures. I hope you enjoy. These are my little men. But one word of wisdom - central heat and air people.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Tagged - What

So I get that I am old beyond my years by the fact that I've been married so long and have so many kids. But I don't get the tag thing so I just copy and pasted changing the answers. I am sure there is a more computer saavy way, but it escapes me. Also...I can't believe I finished your tag Beckie to even see you tagged me. I didn't finish anyone else's so feel privledged that I was curious as to what you would say. No not really unless you want to, but I love you all too. No one feel the need to read this. But here goes...

Husband Survey

What is his name? Travis Dean Whiting

How long have you been married? Not long enough, but coming up on 8 years this summer.

How long did you date? Just over a year.

How old is he? 31

Who eats more? Seriously my husband is a bird. Me. Hands down, not even close.

Who said "I love you" first? Of course me to which he so ever elegantly said I love you, but I am not in love with you. But no worries he has been saying it ever since both ways.

Who gave the 1st kiss? Definitely him - scary - but he says I was asking for it. Ha

Who sings better? Me, but he is a fierce whistler.

Who is smarter? I plead the fifth. But upon being forced I would say him, but his is such a quiet unassuming smartness that I forget it sometimes.

Whose temper is worse? Do you people even need to ask?

Who does the laundry? Me

Who does the dishes? Everyone

Who pays the bills? Me

Who mows the lawn? Me, he thinks he does, but puhlease. In our four years of home owning - I can count on two maybe three hands the times he has. Enough said.

Who cooks dinner? Me

Who drives when you are together? Him, unless I criticize to much at which point he makes me.

Who is more stubborn?Your guess is as good as mine. Probably me.

Who is the first to admit when they are wrong? Have I been wrong?

Whose parents do we see the most? Mine, we live here.

Who had more friends? Me - aquaintances Him - friends

Who proposed? Him

Who has more siblings? Me

Who wears the pants? I try to share.

Consider yourselves tagged if you would like to be tagged.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Kid Update 4 - Isabella (Bella)

Bella is the oldest and so stereotypically so. She is bossy and right, but more than anything she is the biggest help ever. She is our family narrarator telling us things we all see and already know, she is our reporter letting us know how the kids were for the babysitter "The boys were bad, Issac hit her, and I was perfect." But most of all she is a negotiator. She can work a deal better than anyone I know adult or child, male or female. She is pretty good at reading people and therefore quite easily identifies her bargaining power for each individual.

Bella has the most nicknames of our family ranging in derivations of her name to random ones such as Princess Pe pe. She is such an adult in a little body and already we are becoming best friends. School has become boring for her since the academic program here is not as strong as her old school, but she is adjusting as she always does. Bella is my dream fulfilled in that through her I see I may not be screwing up my kids too bad.

Kid Update 3 - Wyatt

Wyatt is also a mellow spirit. He is a lot like his dad in that it takes him a bit to get worked up, but once he does he unleashes like his mom. The one exception being cartoons, don't mess with his tv. After being abused by Issac for so long, Dad taught him how to fight back, not a natural talent for him. After some practice though he has gotten better with his signature move being the couch karate kick. It is exactly that. He runs off the couch leaping mid air to kick Issac, who is standing on the floor, over. Surprisingly Issac just likes being played with.
Wyatt is our options man. He adores them and asks for them constantly. I say what do you want for lunch and hear back "what are my options?" Same with snacks. When I ask which cartoon he wants to watch, what he wants to play, what he wants to do tonight, will you get ready for bed, anything - I hear "what are my options or the slight variation, what are my other options? Grandma thinks this is hilarious. And it is. His sweetness is needed in our house and his kisses are the best.

Kid Update 2 - Issac

Issac aka "crazy man" is just that. This child is more Graver than Whiting, which makes him exciting, funny, and lovable. It also makes him stubborn, independent, and impossible to control, try as I may. When he is happy he can light up the world, but when unhappy he can make everyone around him the same. Someday he'll be a natural leader with that kind of strength. For now he just bullies the other kids mainly Bella and Wyatt. I think he knows I would unleash on him if he offered up his abuse to Kody.

With him he is finally starting to talk where others can understand him, for months Travis and I have been able to but with much trouble. He loves cartoons now with Go, Diego, Go being his favorite. And those who have seen it know his favorite line which is "Freeze Bobos" - those mischievious monkeys. His energy is limitless - in constant motion even while laying to watch cartoons he kicks his legs like he is swimming in the Olympics. He makes my days interesting and gives me the business I crave in motherhood. A free spirit for sure.

Kid Update 1 - Dakota (Kody)

What a great kid. To me each day he becomes more of a Kody. Travis thinks he'll always be a Dakota. Regardless that is why we gave him the name we did. We love options at our house. For more on options see "Kid Update 3". Anyway he is the antithesis of the stereotypical redhead. He is the most mellow, pleasant, and easy baby - ever. Boy does Heavenly Father know what he is doing or what. He is so much like Travis. He easily smiles and loves to laugh.

He is sitting up now days as of a couple of weeks ago, which Travis was surprised to discover one night about two weeks ago. He hasn't started to crawl yet, which is surprising since he started turning over at two weeks old. I think because he spends so little time on the ground now days. Grandma is always scooping him up. She loves to ravish him and has her own perfect doll. He is starting to eat solids. Eeks for the upcoming diapers. Lastly he has started saying "hi". At first Grandma thought it was a fluke, but I knew otherwise. He says it with consistency when he is picked up and you say hi first. I all around love this kid. No complaints - YET.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Ode To My Better Half

I am a lot of things. But most days I realize I am nothing without my better half. He inspires me to be funny, smart, pretty, a better mother, wife, sister, and daughter. So this blog is to him for his impact in my life. This man is so many things - champion husband, world's best father, thoughtful son, dedicated brother, amazing athlete, and all around perfect specimen of human life. Many people don't see the true him, it's not his way. I wouldn't change that and I wouldn't change him because what people don't see is that he is one of the most pure in heart people I have ever met in my entire life. He sees the best in all people, gives mankind the benefit of the doubt, encourages others to be better without any hint of arrogance or conceit. My life changed ever so subtley on July 9, 1999 by meeting him. And now here almost nine years later the impact has been dramatic. My life has been transformed. I am still crazy, spastic, goofy, but I am also kinder, sweeter, happier, and at peace. Here's to him rounding out the rough edges in me and the best nine years ever.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Service Brings About Love

Yesterday was such a busy day. The first half of the morning was filled with house viewing and lucky for us, we found two we love, and one we like. Of course there is one we like more than the rest, so we'll see how that goes in the upcoming days.

The second half of the day was filled with a service project for my Mom. We emptied over 300 jars of canned food that was over twenty five years old. Most of it spoiled or just scary. Pulled posts from the yard that used to be used for grape vines and an old satelite dish poll. And lastly we hooked up electricity to the shed.

Although it was a long day and by six I was beyond spent, it was great. It was something so beautiful as I witnessed the miracle of learning to love those you serve. People who had previously bad feelings were tempered by the service, those who incured financial damage to their belongings through helping were amazing with how little they were bent out of shape, and most of all I saw adults and children alike laughing and bonding through work.

Christ promises miracles through service and, even though it was small, I witnessed one yesterday from my vantage point of the cellar door looking out. Thanks everyone. I love my family. Everything about life is great when I am spending time with you guys.