Friday, February 22, 2008


V-day B-day with the Buttars Family!
Lucy looks more like these cousins and aunt than she does me. Lucky girl!

Brian accused me last night of being obsessed with the computer.

1-It is clearly not the computer, but the internet with which I may be "obsessed."
2-I started being "obsessed with the computer" only just barely before he got home, so it appeared worse than it truly was.
3-As anyone can see if they look at the number of posts I've contributed, I have not been obsessing as much this month as I did last month.
4-I am BUILDING something here. That takes time, man!
5-I am still a domestic diva! Look around you, man!
6-He really should nip this in the bud and get other people like Christy to cease and desist in making blogs addicting and enviable.


Still exercising in the morning (with Rachel -- thanks, RMT & Jillian).

Letting out the dog just before bed to cut back on midnight wake-ups and basement clean-ups.
Closely related: Got the basement carpet cleaned.

Could be doing better on the whole "fresh food initiative."


Thursday, February 21, 2008

2.21.2008 Nothing to Fear...

Lucy's cousin, Izaak, with nothing to fear.

Nothing to Fear....

Is it just me, or is the world falling apart over a flaming cauldron filled with toxic chemicals?

I keep thinking about this, and the best way I've found to move on when I'm obsessing over something is to "process" the living daylights out of it.

It seems like every time I turn on the radio, there's a story about global warming, animal extinction, pollution, cruelty, lead in kids toys, chaos, war and/or other atrocities. It's overwhelming and depressing. It makes me afraid--for myself and for future generations.

So how do you cope?

I cope by doing what I can to be a responsible global citizen. I recycle. I vote. I think about where I shop and what I buy. I do my best to teach Lucy. Is it enough? Probably not. I need to be doing a lot more. I need to be a more mindful consumer. Will it be enough? Time will tell.

I also cope by thinking about the wretched historical situations that the world has survived tolerably, like radioactivity, and cigarettes. These were once thought healthful, not just harmless.

In Uncle Tungsten by Oliver Sacks (which I really, really liked, by the way), you can read about the crazy (as in, insane) things that people used to do with highly radioactive stuff. I seem to remember that people used to add radium to water as a health drink. I read this book years ago, so I hope I'm forgiven for not remembering perfectly. So... my logic tells me that, if generations made it through past gauntlets, then maybe we can make it through this stuff.

My curiosity got me going and I found a link about the history of radiation. FASCINATING! This is some of the stuff I remember from Uncle Tungsten.

I also try to pay attention to the amazingly good news that is available. There is a lot of good happening around the world, right in there with the bad.

Take Lucy's shunt, for example. To have it adjusted, it's a completely non-invasive procedure. Sure, the setting can also be inadvertently be changed by various strong magnetic sources, but before programmable shunts, if a shunt needed to be adjusted, it meant surgery. Before that, hydrocephalus was "routinely fatal."

I have a friend who adopted a baby, Adam Girum, from Ethiopia in 2007. She told me about a little girl who lived in the same orphanage as Adam (Girum) -- This little girl had hydrocephalus and cried all the time. Her head was enormous and everyone just felt terrible because there was nothing they could do to alleviate the pain. She told me this because she thinks it's amazing that Lucy's neurosurgeon is a mere 20 minutes away from us.

We take A LOT for granted.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Oh my...


Here I am looking online at for a german potato salad recipe, and I just noticed that things were way too quiet. Looked behind me to find Lucy leafing through her library books. I knew that if I went to get my camera and took pictures, it would break the spell, but I had to do it.

Today Lucy wanted to wear a princess dress and she dressed her monkey in a matching pink dress. Such fun to witness her role playing all day with her androgynous monkey.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


This is Denise Austin. She will be your personal trainer.

I added some more links to my list:

Consumer Reports
(Sees Chocolate = Consumer Reports Best Buy - rated Very Good due to the "milk and dark chocolates with a lot of notably fresh, crunchy nut pieces. Includes well-blended toffees and caramels with real butter flavor." One caveat: some pieces more sweet than flavorful.)

Google Image Labeler thingy. The Google link has proven to be frighteningly addicting. It's "just" this little game that takes two minutes, gives you a score so you've entered into a competition unwittingly and you actually feel like you're contribute to the indexing of internet images (for Google--but we all know that Google is the world). Fun and productive!


At about 2 am this morning, I was asleep. I then awoke. I could hear that Lucy was sad in her own bed, so I went into her room to get her. About 30 minutes or three hours later, our dog was standing on the bed waiting to be let out. I was a little peeved. Even at 2, 3, 4 or 5 in the morning, my mind registers the fact that, if no one opens the door for the dog to go outside, the dog will go downstairs.

And I will be cleaning it up in the morning.

So I let the dog out.

I was so tired! (Stop and re-read the previous statement like a whiny 12 year-old. ...Thanks.) Anyway, I was so tired! And I knew that I would be waking up at 5:30am to "meet" Denise Austin. I had never tried a Denise Austin video before before, so you can understand my slight anxiety.

I was tired, I was anxious... worn out... Had a two-year old angel and gigantic puppy crammed into my sleeping space and I was not happy. I think I told Brian (who was asleep, but I'm sure it registered in his subconscious--because his subconscious is very perceptive) that "I am going to die if I have to keep waking up like this." I remember thinking that I had just said something almost profound. This was before I let the dog out. When I came back, the dog had jumped into bed in my spot and Brian was basically in the middle of the bed. Add one Lucy and you get about three square feet of space left over. This is when I said, loudly, "Brian, can you move over, please?" It was not a question.

He did move over. And I did sleep.

I would have just slept somewhere else, I have no problem with that, but I was afraid that if I wasn't in the room to wake up with the alarm, it wouldn't happen.

I was so tired! (Yes, the whiny voice still applies--thanks for verifying.)


When I grow up, I don't want to lose my temper, ever. I also want to go at least five decades without whining, even at three in the morning when all other people within earshot are sleeping. When I grow up, I will look pleasant all the time and all of my "passion" wrinkles will just fade away because I will be rock steady ALWAYS. Like this, maybe.

Interesting fact: In my experience with my father, he has only raised his voice to me one time ( I was being a true teenager at the time). I think it's amazing that he made it all these years with that kind of a record.

I know that I've got it easy. One kid. She sleeps through the night a lot of the time. She falls asleep in her own bed most of the time. She sleeps in her own bed much of the time. I just need to learn how to go to sleep earlier, (hence the resolution) and let the dog out just before bed instead of just before dinner. Easy.


Despite my continuing sleep deficit, I did wake up on time this morning.

Meeting Denise was wonderful. She has a knack for coining memorable phrases--they roll naturally from her while she instructs and encourages. The DVD that Rachel and I worked out to is called "Shrink Your Female Fat Zones." I'm pretty sure they got the title from one of Denise's other videos.

"Now, ladies: we're going to shrink your female fat zones. No more jigglies!"

This routine has a good "core" section to it. Final verdict: In addition to knowing her stuff and being astoundingly encouraging, Denise can open her eyes very wide.

We decided that Denise's video would be a good one to mix with DDR or running. And we tried it by plugging in the DDR pads after the Denise Austin DVD skipped one too many times. We still haven't gone running (COLD!), but we have talked about going Friday. Wahoo! Now, back to DDR.

I am sure that among my thousands of readers, there will be several hundred who have taken up DDR as a major player in their fitness training team of tools. (Awesome metaphor!!! Jealous much?) This is a tip for those of you who have done so:

When you have a freeze arrow, instead of just standing there, you can squat!!!

I know. It's a revelation, isn't it?

And another one: jumping may make you look sort of ridiculous and insane, but it sure gets a heart rate up more than just stepping!

Needless to say, I was dragging this morning when I got up to exercise. I debated whether or not I ought to just go back to sleep downstairs on the couch so I could let Rachel wake me up when she arrived. That way I would get an extra 10 minutes or so of sleep. Instead, I put away laundry, cleaned windows, and washed my face. I am responsible at times. I was so happy that I did get up. After early morning laundry, cleaning, Denise and DDR, and seeing a friend, I was much better equipped to be a good human being today.


Brian is such a good daddy--got Lucy in PJs right after dinner. Within an hour, Lucy decided it wasn't time for "Js" yet, and was last seen playing train with the four new laundry baskets I picked up at Target (tar-zjay) today. Laundry baskets work hard at our house. They serve as stools, totes, luggage, trains, laundry/Lucy carriers, etc. It was time to replace the broken ones. When Lucy discovered them, she declared that they were all hers. I set the stack of them on the floor for her and she proceeded to line them up. She then loaded the passenger car with her luggage and carry-on items and climbed in herself. She was wearing her birthday suit--sometimes with a backpack and galoshes, sometimes not.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Things money can't buy:
  • Family
  • Safety
  • Wisdom & knowledge
  • Respect & self respect
  • Health
  • Peace
  • Determination
  • Grace
  • Nice singing voice (unplugged, that is)
  • Friendship
  • Joy
  • Virtuosity
  • Creativity
  • Patience

I know that money could get you close to a lot of these things,
but it could never make them yours.

Just something to think about. It makes me want to make up a checklist.

Today, Lucy has been playing with two of her cousins - Lia and David. She loves having cousins come to play. I love having cousins come to play. Having other people--kids or otherwise--around is great for Lucy and me. It mixes it up for both of us and gives us a little jump start. Plus--as easy as one child may be when compared to multiples, people may forget that an only child's caregiver also inevitably becomes his or her primary playmate. THis is lots of fun, but leaves little time to do much else.

We had a great time. Thanks, David and Lia!

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Lucy got her ears pierced today.

My sister, Monica, came down for the day especially to be with Lucy when she got her earrings. We got everything together and on the road made the decision not to go to the mall, but to take her to a little local jewelry store instead.

When Lucy was about six months old, she and I were out to lunch in Bountiful with some friends. At lunch, my friend, Leslee, mentioned that she wanted to get her little girl's ears pierced. I was thinking of piercing Lucy's, too - ultimately decided not to - but we went with them to the shop. I decided to go back to the same place where Leslee got Mia's ears pierced about two years ago. It was a little sad when we were there with Mia--she cried pretty hard when they put the earrings in. In the back of my mind, I wondered if, on any level, Lucy was recalling any of that day. She didn't seem to. Anyway, they did a great job with Mia, so I figured they would do a good job with Lucy.

Lucy has always been a fan of earrings and other jewelry. She also loves make-up and purses and sunglasses. When I started potty training Lucy in earnest, I decided that I would use every tool in my belt, so to speak--and when I made up her sticker chart, I made it clear that the goal would be earrings (like Mommy's). She was pretty excited about the idea, so I think my plan worked. She is pretty much all done potty training (huge sigh of relief). I say that because in the past four days, she has had only one accident and the past couple of nights, she has had a dry pull-up.

I have had some mixed feelings about the earrings. Part of me feels bad about doing it so young. The other part of me feels fine--it's cute and she wants the earrings and it's not really a big deal. I'm not sure if the people in the jewelry store feel like its a big deal or not. When I walked in the shop with Lucy and told them that she was there to get her ears pierced, they seemed a little reluctant. I think that's a good thing, actually. I might run away if I walked into a place that seemed over-eager. I imagine that piercing a little girl's ears is usually followed closely with crying and tears.

I warned Lucy that getting earrings would hurt (maybe a little, maybe a lot). She still wanted to go through with it, and even described the earrings she had in mind.

"What kind of earrings do you want, Lucy?" Sometimes a trip to the potty can be facilitated by indirectly reminding a potty-trainee of his or her goals.

"Pink ones, like Megan." Lucy thinks further on the subject and then elaborates, "Diamonds!" After a few seconds more to imagine her pink diamond earrings, Lucy touches her ears and says, "Flowers."

I explained that we could only get one pair at first, but then maybe we could find some flowers later. Imagine my surprise when we found the perfect pair of "diamond" flower earrings with a pink center stone at the jewelry store! I was pretty excited about finding Lucy's dream earrings--making a big deal about the little flower-shapes, the five white stones set around the pink center one. Lucy wasn't surprised in the least. She just affirmed that, yes, she would like the pink diamond flower earrings.

After we selected the earrings and after I signed a waiver (yes, really), I held Lucy on my lap while they marked her ears. Aunt Monica sat on a stool a few feet away and held her pink poodle purse. There were a few other customers in the shop and a bit of tension -- we had a small audience waiting to see how Lucy would handle it. After we checked the marks in the mirror to make sure they were what we wanted, a man and a teenage girl each held a piercing gun to one of Lucy's ears. I told Lucy that she could count to three and they would pierce her ears.

We counted together for one and two, but everyone was quiet when Lucy said "three." She jumped a little in my lap, and that was it. Lucy the champ.

She was wide-eyed and a slightly stunned while we hovered around her reminding her to breathe and telling her how beautiful the earrings were, then showed her the mirror again. She was pretty happy about it.

Lucy is proud of the earrings she earned by going through her mother's potty training boot camp. She has been working on her story-telling skills by recounting the story to most anybody who shows interest. She says it didn't hurt, shaking her head and looking very serious. Lucy is currently at Grandma Tayler's house with her daddy, showing off her new earrings. She has also asked her daddy for a necklace.

Monday, February 4, 2008


I am a total and utter gushbomb.
But this is my blog and I can write whatever I want.

I have a fantastic husband. We had friends over last night and there was potential to have a big mess left over along with the dill dip, the barbeque chicken and guacamole. But no--only dip, chicken and guac--no mess. And it is mostly due to Brian. I love that about him. (It doesn't hurt to have thoughtful, clean friends over, either.)

Lucy has been quiet for a while--I left her in her room playing with the radio and looking at books. Anyone with experience in this area will tell you that if a child is quiet, there is more to worry about--not less. Lucy had been quiet for a while and I was kind of looking forward to discovering the surprise. She wasn't in her room...

Turns out she had made her way into what will one day be the study, and has been playing with scissors, cutting tiny pieces of paper and embroidery floss.

I tried to upload some pictures in the past few days, but there was a problem with something, so it didn't work. Here's one of them.

Lucy woke up while Brian was out snowblowing. She was quite anxious to see him, so we came up with this solution. She's sitting on the laundry room counter. She didn't see much of him, so we removed ourselves to the garage, which was exponentially colder, but offered a much better vantage point of Daddy.

If anyone is following my fitness adventures, they continue! Rachel came over this morning and we did kickboxing. It nearly killed me, but here I am! We went to Corena's class on Saturday--hard, but better. I'm keepin' on keepin' on.