When things go wrong, don't go with them.

Starting next week, I will be going into the office 2 days a week.  I am not looking forward to it, but it’s something that needs to be done.  And with no kids at home, I don’t have an excuse not to.  I have also been going over to our church to exercise with a group of women 3 mornings a week.  Which means I will not have a morning to myself.

So this morning I decided that I wanted to stay home and enjoy being alone in the quiet for one last morning.  I chose to not go over to exercise.  I was going to crawl back into bed after the kids left for school and take a long nap, then soak in the tub when I woke up. 

But as I was standing by the side of my bed, I looked around at the mess.  Now don’t get me wrong, my house isn’t filthy.  But there was stuff sitting around that needed to be put away.  So I decided to do a quick pick-up and put-away session while I called my mom.  I did that and we were still talking, and I noticed that I hadn’t dusted in a while.  So I grabbed my Swiffer cloth and dusted while were talking. 

When I got off the phone, I decided that my whole house needed a good cleaning.  I could have (and should have) waited for my children to get home and help me, but when I get the motivation to clean, I try not to ignore it!  Plus I was feeling really guilty for not exercising, so I thought I would make this my exercise for the day. 

I have loaded all my CD’s on my computer, and I used Windows Media Player to create a cleaning playlist.  Fast moving music that I can sing to and keeps me moving.  I put it on super loud (SUPER loud!) and went to work.  I finished dusting, then vacuumed all the carpet, swept all the floors, mopped all the floors, shook all the rugs, and cleaned both bathrooms.  It took me 2 hours and 15 minutes, and I was exhausted when I was done.  I had worked fast and hard and my face was bright red.  I felt like I had just worked out for 2 hours. 

Wait, I had!  Exercise doesn’t have to be aerobics or yoga.  I was up and down and moving my arms and legs and squatting and reaching and bending.  And even if I had to take a cool shower to try and cool down when I was done, I felt good. You know, that feeling that you accomplished something.  And I had it doubly good because I also had a super clean house when I was done!

I may skip exercising once a week and just focus on cleaning that day.  I love how my house looks! 

I just ironed.

Gasp!  I know!  Me?  Ironing?  Will wonders never cease?

I hate to iron.  I think it stems back 12 years ago when I was putting the iron away on a shelf and it fell and landed on my pinky toe and broke it.  Ever since then, I have had a hate/hate relationship with the iron.  I don’t buy 100% cotton shirts.  #1, they shrink in the wash, even if you are careful.  And #2, they have to ironed.  So I just avoid them.

But…(and here’s the really cool news, the whole reason why you are reading this post)…

I get to sing in the choir for the General Relief Society Meeting in the Conference Center on September 25th!  I am so excited!  We have to wear a white, button up shirt for the choir.  So I had to go buy one.  Now, I know I am going to get a lot of you saying, “You could have borrowed one from me,” and my mom has already offered and I know I would fit in hers.  But I was thinking about it and I came to the conclusion that I need to have one.  It is a little dressier than what I have been wearing and I guess, I just felt like it was time to own one.  I know, it sounds stupid.  Let’s move on.

So I bought one and I ironed it.  It looks nice.  But my biggest gripe with white shirts is that they generally aren’t made with the thickest of fabrics.  Which means you can see more through them than I am EVER comfortable with.  So in addition to buying the shirt, I also had to buy a camisole to go under it to hide my, well, you know, goodies.

But it’s frustrating to buy something that won’t even be fully seen.  Yes, I can wear it with other outfits, those that are just a little too low in the front.  But even then you will see about 1 square inch of this cami that cost $9!  And that was at 50% off.  But if that’s what it takes to make me feel comfortable in the white shirt, I will do it.

Now, if learning my alto part for the songs was as easy! 

Women are angels.

And when someone breaks our wings, our spirit, or our hearts...

we simply continue to fly on a broom stick.

We are flexible like that.
Age 4: Mom knows everything!

At 8: Mom knows a lot!

At 12: Mom doesn’t really know everything.

At 14: Mom doesn’t know anything.

At 16: Mom doesn’t exist.

At 18: Mom's just old fashioned.

At 25: Maybe Mom does know about this!

At 35: Before we decide, let’s ask Mom.

At 45: I wonder what Mom thinks about this?

At 65: I wish I could ask my Mom.

The Chocoholic and The Princess started school the last week of July.  That was nice, but not enough.  I still had The Doctor at home as well as my two oldest boys. 

The Doctor started going back to his classrooms last week to get it set up and ready.  That was nice, but not enough I still had the two oldest boys home.

Until today.

Finally it was the first day of school for The Artist and The Teenager.  The Artist is in 8th grade this year, and The Teenage is a junior.  A junior!  I remember being a junior in high school and I was so much older and more mature!  I am sure of that!  But I digress.

At 7:51 I was a free woman.  They were all gone to school and I let out a big “Whoo hoo” throughout the neighborhood.  The Chocoholic asked me what I was going to do all day.  He was very concerned that I would be bored.  He’s so cute!

So I was alone.  All. Day. Long.  It was quiet.  I just sat and listened to the silence. What a wonderful day!

How was your day?

Now is the most interesting time of all.
If you ever wondered which side of the fence you sit on, this is a great test:

If a conservative doesn't like guns, he doesn’t buy one.
If a liberal doesn't like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.

If a conservative is a vegetarian, he doesn’t eat meat.
If a liberal is a vegetarian, he wants all meat products banned for everyone.

If a conservative is homosexual, he quietly leads his life.
If a liberal is homosexual, he demands legislated respect.

If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his situation.
A liberal wonders who is going to take care of him.

If a conservative doesn't like a talk show host, he switches channels.
liberals demand that those they don't like be shut down.

If a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn't go to church.
A liberal non-believer wants any mention of God and religion silenced.

If a conservative decides he needs health care, he goes about shopping for it, or may choose a job that provides it.
A liberal demands that the rest of us pay for his.

If a conservative reads this, he'll pass it along so his friends can have a good laugh.
A liberal will delete it because he's "offended."

A couple of weeks ago, in a house on the street behind us, the family was cooking dinner.  They had chicken out on the grill on their patio.  They went inside to check on something, and when they came back out, there were flames shooting from their propane tank to their house.  They quickly got everyone out of the house and made sure they were safe.  The fire department came and put out the fire, but they will be out of their house for 4 months while they get a whole new roof, new carpet, and wall board (from the water).  In a matter of minutes their lives changed drastically.

I came way too close to that 15 minutes ago. 

I was blow drying my hair when my dryer stopped for a few seconds then started going again.  I thought the power had flickered.  It did it again and I pulled it away from hair to look at it.  And then it sparked.  From the base of the blow dryer, a huge orange spark shot out and I heard it sizzle. 

Now, if I had been smart, I would have just dropped it.  No, I threw it…into the hall…onto the carpet.  Fortunately, nothing happened.  I quickly unplugged it and sat and stared at it while smelling the acrid smell of burnt wires.  My kids saw the spark and were freaked out as well.  After I was sure nothing was going to happen, I took the hair dryer and quickly threw it away. 

What would I have done if the carpet had caught fire?  I am seriously freaked out, thinking about all the “what if’s".  But for today, I am so grateful that nothing happened. 

Now I just have to figure out what to do with my wet hair!

Success is getting up one more time.

I blew off my boss yesterday because I had to take care of me (I went and exercised).  So this morning I had to do some work and it was a disaster. I couldn’t figure out where to classify things and I was frustrated that I had to work on Saturday, and then I was frustrated that I had to work at all and I finally got in the shower and had a good cry. But I was still in a bad mood the rest of the day. I tried really hard to snap out of it, but I just couldn’t shake it. It didn’t help that I am super stressed out about money right now.

I made sugar cookie dough and helped The Princess make cookies using her new cookie press. I didn’t want to make them, but I had promised her, so I was stuck doing it. I tried to make it fun for her, but I think I did a lousy job. When we were done, I went and laid down for a while.  We went over to the pool and I was able to just lay there and rest for a while. I also did some reading, and that helped my mood. Unfortunately, I kept thinking about all the things that I should have been doing. 

I also got The Teenager upset at me and the whole day was just shot.  I shouldn’t have gotten out of bed this morning.  Oh yeah, I wouldn’t have gotten up so early if the neighbors across the street hadn’t been out smoking and yelling and swearing up a storm.  I had to get up and shut the windows and blinds, but by then I was awake and thinking about the work that I had to do.

Yeah, here’s hoping tomorrow is a better day.

My children are growing up on me, and I can’t stop them. 

The Princess started 1st grade this year.  That means she is in school all day long.  She is loving it.  She comes home each day bursting with stories about the kids and things that have happened (I love it because the boys never tell me anything).  Her teacher said that she has a very unique quality, in that she is friendly to everyone.  Not just to her friends, but to all the kids in the class.  I am so proud of her, because that is something I have really talked to her about, and tried to teach her.  She is reading so well.  We read from the scriptures for 1/2 hour every morning, and then each child goes to their room for reading for one hour each night before bed.  Not only does it help their reading, but it gives them time to calm down and be ready for bed. 

The Chocoholic is in 6th grade.  He loves walking to school with The Princess because last year he had to walk alone.  He got a great teacher this year, and she is really going to challenge him.  I am thrilled about that.  He is an entrepreneur and loves to make money.  Right now he is selling Silly Bands before school.  He buys them at Wal-Mart where there are 12 in a package for $1.  Then he sells them for 25 cents each.  He said the kids know they can buy them cheaper at the store, but then they have a bunch that are the same.  This way, they buy just the ones they want.  He only takes one package at a time to sell and won’t open another package until the first one is gone.  It cracks me up, but he is making pretty good money!

The Artist is in 8th grade.  No longer will he be the bottom of the barrel at the junior high!  He loves art, singing, and drums.  His birthday isn’t until October, but we already gave him his birthday present.  We were treasure hunting, a.k.a. driving around looking at garage sales, when we saw a big drum set.  I got a killer deal on it, but it was too big to hide in the house.  So we had to give it to him.  He was so excited.  His voice is deep and now he is getting mistaken for his dad AND his older brother. 

The Teenager is working like mad to save money.  He has a scooter but it’s only 49.5cc and it barely goes 25 mph.  He wants to buy a motorcycle, which I am totally fine with.  Then he will start saving for a car.  He is working at an ice cream/grill shop and does dishwashing and bussing.  Yesterday he worked a double shift, so he left the house at 11:30 a.m. and didn’t get home until 12:30 a.m.  He is doing the same today and tomorrow.  This morning when he got home, I told him I wasn’t going to wake him up to read scriptures with us so he could get more sleep.  He said, “No, if I do that, the Lord won’t bless me.”  I was so proud of him.  He is going to be in 11th grade this year.  I think that sounds younger than saying he will be a Junior.  I remember being a Junior in high school.  Yikes!

I keep telling my children to stop growing up, and yet if they stop growing up, how will I ever get them to leave the house so I can be alone with The Doctor?  Because I am really looking forward to that!  I guess it’s the season of life I am at.  No more babies, just children getting older and preparing to leave the nest.  I hope I am doing a good job with them.  I don’t have much time.

I have been absent this week.  Sorry.  I have been working some extra hours getting a huge bank reconciliation done, and we have had junior high and high school registrations, as well as SEP's for the younger two to deal with.  This is the time that I usually blog (10:00 pm), but I can barely keep my eyes open.  I didn't even get my laundry done today, and I am religious about laundry day!  Oh well, there's always tomorrow.  I will blog more soon.  But work comes first.
Life is what's coming up, not what was.

I don't believe in a lot of things, but I do believe in duct tape.

(Quote from Lost)


I am a very organized person.  Many times, to a fault.

In the shower, all bottles have to have their labels facing out.  I always can tell if The Doctor has used my shampoo or face wash because it’s not put back exactly where I put it.  I am obsessed about where things should be put.  I know exactly where each thing on my bathroom cupboard goes.  And don’t get me started on the fridge.  Each shelf has a purpose and leftovers should go on the leftovers shelf, not the shelf for the water bottles!  When I put my hair up in electric curlers, I take one from one side, and then one from the other.  I have to keep the empty spots even. 

So when I had children, it became a daily struggle to let the toys stay on the floor and not constantly be picking up.  I had to learn, and I am still learning, that the house can be a little cluttered.  Not all the time.  The kids never go to bed without picking up and putting away.

The Chocoholic is exactly like me.  He is clean and organized.  The Teenager and The Princess are somewhere in the middle.  They will pick up when I ask them to, but their bedrooms aren’t the cleanest. 

The Artist is a COMPLETELY different story.  He is so creative and artistic and funny, but he is a slob.  That may sound cruel, and I love him very, very much, but that child drives me nuts.  He leaves his dirty clothes (and his clean clothes) on the floor, toys on the floor…oh face it, he leaves everything on the floor.  Stuff on the dresser and the bed.  Stuff everywhere!  I send him down to clean his room and he will lay on his bed and play.  It is so frustrating. 

This week he is gone to Scout camp.  From Monday morning until Saturday afternoon.  I thought this would be the perfect time to clean his room.  And when I say clean, I mean pull everything out and clean and organize.  So this morning, I headed down at 10:30. 

I finished at 3:00. 


I stripped the bed, then started picking up the floor and I just put it all on the bed.  I pulled everything out of the closet and organized it.  I pulled everything out of the dresser drawers and sorted out the too small clothes and FOLDED (novel concept to him) and put it away.  I cleaned out behind the dresser and under the bed and behind the door. Then I went through everything that was on the bed and got it sorted and put away.  And thrown away.  I filled an entire garbage bag full of garbage and broken toys and old Lego magazines. 

When he was packing for camp, I asked him if he needed to do his laundry.  He brought up his laundry basket and showed me that it was only 1/3 full.  Well, by the time I got done today, the basket was overflowing and it took two washer loads to get it done. 

The sad thing is I know it won’t last.  Probably not even until the end of next week.  Perhaps the chaos is needed in order for him to be creative.  He is The Artist, after all.

I love this kid so much.  But I will continue to harass him to clean and pick up until the day he moves out.  And when he gets married, I will apologize profusely to his wife. 

I had so much fun tonight! 

Aren't they cute?  I received these canisters as a wedding present over 18 years ago.  I put temporary labels on them after I mixed up baking powder and baking soda once.  Well, those temporary labels lasted for 17 1/2 years.  I decided it was time to put something cute on.  I love how they turned out!  The only problem is that I don't want to put them back in my pantry!
Look for opportunities, not guarantees.