Saturday, November 29, 2008

ben talks to cheese.

i realized this just a few days ago, but i'm not sure how long it's been going on. i'm at the table enjoying my cheese & tomato bagel when i hear ben say in a quite seductive tone,

"ohhhh. helloooo there."

i mistakenly think he's talking to me so i turn around with furrowed eyebrows. only to realize he's staring at the nearly-empty cookie sheet.

and he continues.

"hellooooo burnt cheese. i didn't see you sitting there." then he giggles like the cheese has just batted its eyelashes and said something funny in return.

he quickly picks the small pieces off of the tray & leaves the room.

tonight was the same thing, though his tone was less seductive and more of a friendly conversation.

"hey, we meet again." the poor cheese didn't see what was coming. it was quickly consumed as ben walked away satisfied.

i guess now that i'm sitting here listening to caleb talk to a pinecone (and hearing the pinecone carry on a converstion in a higher-pitched caleb voice,) i realize where it's coming from.

am i right to be worried?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

happy thanksgiving

"If ingratitude be numbered among the serious sins, then gratitude takes its place among the noblest of virtues."
i am thankful.

needing some advice from the pros

so i have a dilemma.

i will keep this as neutral as possible so that you don't know who's on what side but i need some advice from those who have gone before us.

on potty training caleb.

let's just be honest here and say we have put forth 0% effort so far in this endeavor because to be honest, we have just been lazy. (there were legitimate reasons at the group home, but since september, there has been nothing but lame justifications.)

but the time has come.

so here's the dilemma:

we are going to utah in about 2 weeks for almost a month to spend time with family and friends. there is a slight possibility that ben & i will be going away for one of those weekends for a little anniversary getaway & we will be asking one lucky set of family members to help out with caleb.

so we basically have 2 weeks to have caleb master the skill of using the potty like the big boy he claims he is.

side 1) wants to do this. NOW. we are all prepped and ready with candy, toys, a big can of resolve and a weekend where after tomorrow we don't have much going on. the goal is that he can be all finished (except for maybe overnight sleeping) by the time we head out of town. plus doesn't dr. phil say it can be done in one day??

side 2) is more hesitant. not because they don't feel the urgency, but is considering an 11 hour car trip with stops in (ew) truck stops, etc. then there will be possible accidents at relatives' homes, and the possibility of leaving a newly-trained bladder with some un-ready relatives for the weekend. besides, caleb is so small that he can't get up on the toilet without help & one of those little toilet cover things. so we would probably be bringing his potty training toilet with us everywhere we go.

both have legitimate arguments. the boy is 3 1/2 for pete's poss. granted, he still wears 2T and those fit loosely so he may not look the part. but he is supposed to be going into primary in january and even though i don't necessarily care, we get "looks" from others who are like, he's not potty trained yet?

he has never gone through the stage of ripping off his diaper, or even sitting down on the potty just for fun. he himself has convincing arguments as to why a lifetime of diapers would not be so bad. but are we going to take advice from a 3 year old? not likely.

so help, please!
comment away. just please don't criticize us for our slothfulness. we aren't perfect you know.

take 2.

went to twilight again last night with cousin dana. and let me say to those of you skeptics who think the second time's a charm is a load, to you i say humble yourselves and give it a try. because for me it was just the ticket.

speaking of tickets, when did movies go up to $9.50? rip off with a capital R.

no it did not take away the awkwardness of the entire forest scene, nor did it suddenly turn jasper into someone who can act like he was in a movie instead of in a commercial for x-lax.

but it definitely was a ton more enjoyable & forgivable the second time around. so go, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.

to dana
, i'm sorry you got exiled from being able to go again with a group because you weren't allowed to "bash," but am selfishly happy because it's so fun to hang out with you. not just because you shared the same opinion of the movie the first time, but also because you are direction-challenged (like myself) and easy to talk to & be around.

and there was only one awkward moment, but luckily it wasn't from you. it was being called "sweetheart" in a creepy voice by some strange fella as he opened the door for us.

who knew big bellies were guy magnets? i guess i really need to start workin' it.

ps-to those die-hards who are mad at the skeptics of the movie, i am trying to make up. i mean look who's in the #2 of the playlist. robbie himself. interesting voice, ben & i kinda like it. he didn't make #1, but that's because everytime i hear my opening song it puts me in a good mood.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

mOrNiNg eXeRcIsEs

here is caleb joining me for my morning exercise video. this is the part where you use a chair to do some nasty leg lifts.

and here is caleb 5 minutes later.

and for the rest of the time you can either find him doing this,

or climbing all over me like a monkey. when he gets in those moods it doesn't matter what i bribe him with, he refuses to leave me alone to find my chi in my child's pose and deep breathing. so we are going to have to come up with a new routine.

to those mothers who set their alarms to go off before their kids wake up so they can get some decent calorie burning in, i tip my hat to you. but i was thinking something more along the lines of either a benadryl-induced morning nap for caleb, or giving into the "no cookies before lunch" rule.

this is where you sit back in awe of reading a post from the mother of the year.

Monday, November 24, 2008


people are probably not that interested in whether or not i liked the twilight movie, but i will give my opinion anyway. why? because i'm entitled to it.

i did not go in there with high expectations that everything would be perfect, i have only read the books once & did not have them memorized. i know that movies cannot stick exactly to the storyline and they do their best to please fans & non-fans.

that being said.

1) jasper. there was something seriously wrong with him. i know that he was supposed to be having a hard time being around bella, but seriously he looked more like a 2008 cheesy edward scissorhands than anything. he stole every scene he was in, and not in a good way. i kept waiting for him to start trimming some bushes with his hands.

2) the poor, poor makeup jobs on a few of the characters, namely carlisle. to me he looked like he had been sticking his face in a jar of flour right before he popped on the set. there were a few others i thought were over-the-top but carlisle took the cake.

3) the crazy annoying 80's electric guitar background music that made a couple of scenes laughable, when they weren't supposed to be. my family & i have always been big on good soundtracks & how they affect the movie. and this one did. each time the butt rock guitar solo came on, i felt like i was watching a bad soap opera.

that being said there were definite moments that i felt had real potential & i am hoping that with a bigger budget, the other two movies will be made. i have been told to go & see it again knowing all of these things are what they are & just to enjoy it. and i think i will, in a few weeks when i don't have to wait in line with screaming teens.

ps-highly recommend a 10:30 pm showing. the crowds were still there, but it was much more mature so we didn't have to hear yips and yelps when edward entered the room. and i'm thankful for that. will post pictures soon.

Friday, November 21, 2008

mr. fix it

yesterday morning i woke up to a big mess and a stranger in my apartment. his name is
mr. fix it.

he oddly resembles someone i know but he visits so infrequently that i had to make sure he wasn't a figment of my imagination, so i got a close up.

which as you can see, he appreciated greatly. me being in his business.

this couch was a hand-me-down from my parents and we were SO grateful for it. however this poor baby has been through its share of moves and we realized the more we sat on it, that somewhere along the way, it had been broken. we tried to temporarily deal with it, by stuffing comforters underneath the cushions.

but it just wasn't doing the trick.

so in lieu of our current financial situation & trying to live by the motto "use it up, wear it out, make do or do without," ben got to work.

and what do you know?

ben + 6 hours + lots of yelling+ home depot = a fixed, lovely, sturdy couch
(and plenty of sore muscles)

this baby's got 10 more years of life in her!

thanks mr. fix it. come again soon.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

it's a hard knocked life

poor caleb is continuing to learn the lesson that sometimes what you want may not always be what you need. and at 3 years old, there is no time like the present to learn this lesson. caleb loves to come up with alternative ideas to what ben & i suggest (aka, arguing) and loves to throw himself into a tizzy when i say these words,

"i hear what you're saying (repeat back to him what he said),
but the answer is no."

we will back it up with reasons of why so that he doesn't think we're just power-hungry monsters. and though most of those reasons get lost in the midst of loud wails and bucket-sized tears, we still try.

caleb, even though you don't think so right now, one of the biggest lessons in life is to learn how to accept things that are difficult and move on. take it from me, i got to see first hand what happens if parents do not set boundaries for their kids. in fact i lived with it last year and it's not pretty.

remember this??
all because one of the GH kids didn't want to do dishes.
(and this was not even the worst time)

so little man, just know that when i tell you "no, you can't have a snack because then you won't eat lunch" or "nope, let's turn off the t.v. and read some books" it is only because i love you and want to do what is best for you at the time (which contrary to your beliefs, you may not always know what that is). i'm also attempting to save you from turning into a crazy teenager who does thousands of dollars worth of property damage over hearing "no."

here's a little tribute to you sweet boy. when things aren't going my way, i find myself singing this song. and i realize that most of the time the lyrics are not lying.

sometimes it really is just what you need.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

we love nana!

a couple of weeks ago we got a cute package from my took me a little while to upload these photos. but anyway, caleb loves nana packages because they always have special treats inside for him.

inside was...

dora workbooks, which he loves & we immediately got to work on.

a potty training video...let's say our prayers it works!

several adorable little girl outfits (cameraman didn't take specific shots of these, sorry. just know my mom has great taste), a headband, a book for me (which was read in 2 days) and ben's favorite thing...

a back massager!! though i have to admit, i have made ben use it more on me than i've used it on him. caleb liked to hold it up to his eyes so everything looks blue.

thank you for the wonderful package, nana! we love you and miss you!

lightening up

you may have noticed...or not...that things are a bit brighter around here. still plain, just brighter. i just felt like each time i opened up my blog things were, well, dark. i guess "once you go black" does not apply to this domain.

Monday, November 17, 2008

a giveaway a day!

i don't know how she does it.

after moving into a new house & all that goes with it. following around 3 kids, exercising like it's going out of style. and yet my sister has the time and energy to do a giveaway everyday for 7 days on her mom blog! it's already started today, but you can still go here, follow the directions & get signed up. she already gave away some adorable girls' boots from see kai run!

so go, while you still can, and sign up!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

a home-made toddler bomb.

what do you get when you combine 1/2 tablet of this:

and this:

shaken up a little & given to your 3-yr old in this??

an explosive, citrus-y mess. that doesn't stop spraying your shocked son's face until the cup is almost empty. we're hoping that some of the vitamin C that went up his nose will help him feel a little better. but don't try this at home folks, unless you're prepared for a rockin' good time.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

the how to's on the black & white picture

so before we get into how the picture was done i would like to say a couple of things:
  • this is a completely original idea put together by the partnership called bensey. and i am proud of that fact.
  • there are several ways that you could make this even easier than i did and i will post those ideas in italics so that if you want to do it yourself but want to make it quicker, you can.
  • this idea has a copyright and has patent pending. so try and steal it and you will be slapped with a lawsuit faster than you can say "i stole her idea." just kidding.
let's begin.

step 1) it all started with me wanting some inexpensive artwork in my home that wasn't a picture of me, ben or caleb. so i saw this fabric at the fabric store and an idea was formed. but as you can tell with my black & white bedspread as a background, the navy blue & white clashed.

(by far, the easiest way to do this is to find fabric that you like and hot glue/staple it to a blank canvas & hang it up. i considered doing it, but i really wanted mine to look like painted artwork...and again, the fabric didn't match so i had to come up with another idea.)

step 2) so instead, i put the material on our scanner & copied a small section and blew it up into black and white.

step 3) the blank canvas, bought it with a 40% off coupon at michael's crafts.

step 4) made 4 copies of the small sections of fabric so that they matched each other and lined up perfectly to cover the canvas. in this picture, these are just random parts and don't match up. i'm just showing an example so you can get an idea.

(an easier way to do this part...because it was tricky to make sure you copied the parts of material exactly so that it matched up to just make them not match. it sounds weird, but i thought it might be cool to just have 4 squares that don't match up and then line them all with painting a black border around each of them, so that those who see it know that you purposely didn't want it to match up. hope this is making sense??)

step 5) mod podge the paper onto the canvas. make sure if you do the paper idea to use the "paper mod podge" instead of just the regular kind so that the paper doesn't rip. also make sure to smooth it down well so there are no bubbles.

step 6) using acrylic paint & a teeny-tiny paintbrush, i painted over the pattern. this took a while...probably about 5 hours total...but i would just do it for an hour or so each night while watching t.v.

(this is a step you could entirely skip. you could just mod podge the paper on, paint a black border around the edges, then mod podge over the paper. i tried this because i knew that painting it would take a while & i am not the most patient person. but it looked really "flat" to me and i really loved the way that the paint made the print pop out & again...look like it was hand-painted art. which i guess it technically was.)

step 7) i painted a 1 inch border around the edges so that it would stand out against my white walls.

step 8) after the layer of paint is dry, do a thick layer of mod podge over the top, wait for it to dry and you're done! voile.

***sorry i gave the impression that this was all hand-painted by myself. (i'm sure it was subconsciously on purpose, i wanted the public to think i am absolutely amazing when i am really sub-par. :) i've never been an artist and seriously could never have done this pattern freehand. but even though all i did was paint over the pattern, i felt like a true artist. i even went mad for a minute & threatened to cut off one of my ears. sarcasm.

***any questions? is this confusing? leave me a comment & let me know if i need to make it more simple or if you need any more info. and if you do make one, post it & let me know because i would love to see it!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

boring?? or peaceful??

there are several things i'd like to blog about such as:

  • the anger i feel toward those who feel they have been "persecuted" for believing what they believe and now they are the ones doing the harassing and persecuting toward others who stand up and vote for what they believe.
  • the fact that putting neosporine up your nose for 3 nights really does help cure zits. thanks carrie (private blog) for the tip!
  • how i am in love with my early christmas present from ben...the ikea bedspread i have been pining to have for months now.
  • showing my recent craft which i think turned out pretty successful.

instead, i will just post a couple of pictures. here is one of caleb playing hide-and-seek.

and another one from the day one of the group home kids went crazy and threw our grill off the back deck.

with a reminder like that, it makes me grateful for these days when i really don't have much to blog about. it wasn't too long ago that i had to pick and choose between stories that were all shocking and a bit traumatic. so i will call it a night, and enjoy my peaceful little life.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

finding out the hard way

question: can a woman "pull a groin?"

answer: absolutely.

question: who "pulls a groin" while playing soccer for 2 hours with their 3 yr. old? (we're talking toddler soccer here, not an olympic event.)

answer: i do. (must have been when i went through the hula hoops while showing caleb how to do the obstacle course. i mean that's some tough stuff.)

question: how painful is it to pull the said groin?

answer: very. and the only thing that helps is to ice pack the area. how awesome is that. just keeping the romance alive for benjamin.

Friday, November 7, 2008


here we have the 4th picture from the 4th folder on our computer....

this was taken june '07, at a family picture party. here we are with matt (the oldest of ben's siblings) & his lovely wife jennie. i realize yet again what a midget i am. and i was wearing tall shoes that day!

this was us pre-group home (notice how few wrinkles we have?), we moved out there like two weeks after this picture was taken. ahhh, if we had only known what we were in for.

i tag: okay caleb is yelling too loudly for me to think right now, so i tag anyone who wants to do this!

p.s.-will post the how to's on that b&w picture...i just now have to take a couple of pictures to show how to do it. but it's coming i promise.
p.s.s. -i think ol' benjamin looks pretty handsome in this picture. what a good lookin fella.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


dr's appt today, a very unexciting one. which for me, is exciting.

wt. gain this month: 3 lbs. (it is all in my bum)
heartbeat: good, strong
movement: she is crazy
cravings: luigi's italian ice, rasberry & lemon flavors...pears...turkey sandwiches made by ben with turkey, provolone cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers. the best!
next month: the nasty gestational diabetes test drink. yum.
prediction: this will be the month that i really pop out.

here i am in non-maternity clothes which don't make me look as pregnant as maternity clothes do. but i want to remember these days, so that's that.

goodbye, waistline. see you in like, a year.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

getting crafty

since lately ben has been showing me up in the creativity department, i thought i would post a little something that i have been working on for about a week and just finished. it's called: cheap art. (well, inexpensive at least)

it is a 14x18 canvas painting. it has flaws, yes, but it's my first attempt and i have to say i love the way it turned out! it will go fantastically in our black & white bedroom. if anyone wants the how-to's on this, i'll be happy to share, it was a combined creative effort between ben & i. it's a lot easier than it looks. and you can use any pattern you want to, i just loved this one.

close up of the hand-painted (by moi) vintage pattern.

coming soon: some really cool shelves made out of some old vinyl-lettered signs. woot.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


today caleb & i went to check the mail & picked up two huge boxes that were sent to us by our old davis HS friend, rachel. what was in them?? check it out...

tons of baby girl clothes! (she has a cute little girl named annaka)

at first caleb wanted to help unpack .

but when he realized it wasn't his style, he grabbed hold of the these pictures are compliments of him. (do you think ansel adams cut off the tops of trees & mountains when he first started out? i'd like to think so.)

here's one of the many cute dresses. and me crouching because caleb couldn't figure out how to hold up the camera without his fingers covering the lens.

look at it all!!!! onesies, dresses, hats, pajamas, pants, shirts, bibs, everything!!

seriously rachel, you have no idea how much you've helped us out. it felt like christmas day, only better.
thank you so much!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

all for one...

caleb has been obsessed with this show for several months now:

and ben, being the good dad he is, got a creative idea. caleb as a musketeer for halloween? why not. but instead of buying the costume ($35), ben decided to make it. that's right, make it. i have to admit i was pretty skeptical. but we are talking about a man and a dream here people. turns out ben and a glue gun make a deadly team.

here is ben martha stewart strader hard at work:

and a picture of him wearing the half-finished product...

and now, for the unveiling of the masterpiece...
(let's pretend those are tears of joy in the corner of his eyes. he wasn't happy about the fashion show.)

caleb loved it, especially the sword.

can you believe it? he drew the fleur de lis freestyle. with puff paint, nonetheless.

there's nothing like a little blood, sweat and one HUGE thumb blister (still healing) to make for a great time. we had a fun halloween...a ward trunk-or-treat, then trick-or-treating with our friends the beckers last night. (thanks again for the fun! and i'm not as socially retarded as ben said. i am socially retarded, just not to the level he proposed.)

ben set the bar for this year, i'm excited to see halloween 2009.
hope everyone had a great time!