Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sometimes new lamps make me giddy...

I'm in the process of re-thinking the color scheme of my bedroom and have decided that turquoise will be involved...as an accent color or something like that.
Wandering around Home Goods a few days ago, these turquoise glass lamps caught my eye.
Oh. My. Perfect.
But I left them there.
And then I couldn't get them out of my head.  Truly perfect.  Did I mention that?  But a bit on the pricey side.  And more of a want than a need.
Oh, but hey!  My birthday is coming up.  It's still a good five weeks away, but....
So I went back to Home Goods.  I bought two of those lamps...one for for each bedside table.  
And I justified it as an early birthday present.  
Happy Birthday to me!  


The girls were so helpful to take such careful care of my lamps on the drive home...

More pictures after I get my bedroom all finished.  We're talking throw pillows, a couch cover and hey, maybe even curtains!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

We're here for RSL!


We went to our first Real Salt Lake game last night as a family.  A few questions from the kids:
* Do you think the ball has ever been kicked all they way up and over the stadium?
* Do you think the players ever get a headache from hitting the ball with their heads so much?
* Why is everyone booing that Colorado player?  He's hurt!!
* Why did that Colorado player totally just fake being hurt??
* Why is the field so wet?  Is it soccer player sweat?

RSL played the Colorado Rapids...which we've since discovered are their rivals with which they compete every year for the Rocky Mountain Cup.  I had no idea it was such a big game...I picked this particular date because there was fireworks after the show.  Go figure.  
(The big screen was up behind us....here's the replay of our first goal.)

But it was quite the game and we had a fantastic time.  One thing to be said for soccer...it may be low scoring but you won't ever find yourself getting bored since that ball is constantly on the move.  And the fans...oh wow, are they ever passionate!  The great majority were in Real soccer shirts of one variety or another, they knew all the players, the songs and chants.  They wave flags, signs and scarves.  They pound drums....throughout the entire game.  I suppose that I have seen this devotion to BYU and Utah football teams and have of course, seen it with Jazz basketball.  I guess it was ignorance in assuming that RSL didn't have the same kind of fan base seeing as soccer is somewhat new-ish along the Wasatch Front.  Silly me.  It made for some fabulously entertaining people watching.

Despite the fact that I went out of my way to buy "cheap seats" I was really impressed with our view.  And then when the game was over (2-0 in favor of RSL) they invited those in the North end zone seats to come down onto the field for better fireworks viewing.  The kids were delighted when they realized, "Hey! That's us!!"  And though we were sitting on wet grass, we thoroughly enjoyed the show.  It was a great night. 

(Rebekah is already asking to go to another game.  
She, even more than the rest of us, got into the game seeing as she played soccer for 4 years.)

Friday, July 20, 2012


Lilian has been a little paranoid and obsessed about her health lately.  Constant questions about germs and how her little body works.   Last week at the pool we told her not to drink the water because it had chlorine in it.  Countless questions later Lilian knew that chlorine was used to kill germs in the water.  Why?  Because human bodies can be dirty or sometimes little kids go potty in the water.  All in all, chlorine is good.  Then why can't she drink it?  Because chlorine in large quantities isn't good for your body.  What if she gets some in her mouth when jumping into the pool?  That's okay...nothing to worry about if it's just a little bit.  But what happens if you get too much?  Oh, maybe diarrhea.  Lilian whimpered the rest of the day about the possibility of diarrhea and declared she was never going to Cherry Hill again.  Sigh.

Yesterday I took Julianne, Rebekah  and some friends to the pet store to buy fish.  Lilian tagged along.  I waited in the car and was informed when they returned that this particular store only had fancy fish.  Which meant we needed to drive to a pet store in a neighboring town to find the cheapy .15 cent fish they were after.  With my car filled to bursting with chattering teenage girls, I didn't really pay much attention to Lilian behind me in her car seat.  I did hear some comments (accompanied by giggling) that made me aware of the fact that Lilian was asleep with her mouth wide open...which meant she was drooling.  My only thought was that when we arrived at the next pet store, Lilian would obviously be staying in the car with me.  And yes...when the girls hopped out of the truck and I looked back, Lilian's mouth was open so wide I could practically look down her throat.  I chuckled a little and thought nothing more.  Who hasn't fallen asleep with their mouth open at one time or another?

After a few minutes Julianne came running out to inform me that in order to buy fish an adult was needed.  Seriously?  This necessitated waking up Lilian....which she was none to thrilled about.  But she refused to close her mouth, crying and mumbling something about poison.  Huh?  A bad dream, maybe?  I couldn't get much out of her because she was grumpy and groggy.  (And talking none too clearly with her mouth wide open.)  But she was determinedly stubborn about not closing her mouth.  She was insistent that she needed to wash her mouth and me just wiping my hand across her lips was not cutting it.  By the time I got into the store and found the gaggle of girls, I was at my wits end.  When I explained that Lilian seemed to be freaking out about poison on her lips Rebekah at least had the grace to look chagrined.  And then the story came out.

Apparently at the last pet store Lilian had been looking at the parakeets and making blowfish kisses at them on their glass cage.  Rebekah was horrified (as rightly she should've been) and told her to stop...that the cage was dirty.  And then described the bird messes as poisonous.  Now, Lilian wasn't sucking on a barred cage or anything.  So realistically there likely wasn't any sort of bird poop or anything equally as nasty... probably just human hand germs.  Still gross, certainly...but still.  In her defense, Rebekah was just being a responsible older sister and had no idea that Lilian would get so freaked out.

Once hearing the story I tried to reason with Lilian.  Nope.  No amount of reassurance from me would shut that mouth.  I took her to the drinking fountain and told her to run the water over her lips.  She refused that also as not quite good enough to get the "poison" off her lips.  I had to take her into the bathroom and scrub her lips and surrounding face over and over and over.  And then thoroughly wipe her mouth with paper towels before she'd even consider closing her mouth.  And even then, though she allowed me to take her back to the fish area to meet back up with the girls, it took awhile before she dared truly close her mouth again.

Sigh.  I sure hope I don't have a future germ-a-phobe on my hands.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

That place...

I'm at that place again.  That same place I occupied six years ago.  The one where I found myself grappling with thoughts of entering a new phase of life.  With all of my children in school, what would I do with myself?  Oh, I had no doubt I would keep busy regardless.  But I found myself with a desire to do more, to reinvent myself, maybe?  To challenge myself?  However you describe it, this is the place I found myself inhabiting six years ago.  Brandon was heading off to Kindergarten.  Thoughts of a masters degree, or voice lessons to prepare myself for potential auditions for theatres or choirs?  Or volunteering at a museum, or getting a job?  All of those ideas came to a screeching halt as one very big and overwhelming thought took their place.  Another baby.  (Another baby???)  So I exited that place and reentered one that was familiar...but with the vague feeling that this place and I needed to be reintroduced.  It had been many years since I had dealt with morning sickness, maternity clothes and cravings.  Nighttime feedings, diapers and spit-up were something I thought was in my past.  But oh, that sweet little face.  Those coos and giggles and smiles.  That fresh-out-of-the-bath new baby smell.  It was the right place to be at that time.

But six years have passed.  That baby is a baby no more.  Lilian is heading off to Kindergarten this September.  And though I know I won't be jumping into anything immediately, I'm finding myself in that new phase of life place again.  I've spent the morning researching masters programs and museum jobs.  And the more I read, the more excited I become.  I don't know yet, what I will choose to do.  I know that whatever it is, it'll be something that will allow me to still be a mother and wife first and foremost.  But I can feel it...that pull.  

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Girly pink

Lilian has been begging to paint her room.  Girly pink is the color of choice.  I said something along the lines of "No way, Jose!"  Mostly because I know that within a few years she'll probably move downstairs into a room vacated by one of her sisters when they go off to college or get married or go on a mission or whatever.  (How off-putting is it to realize that these events are not that far off!?!?) We compromised by hanging curtains and a few other updates to Lilian's room. 

Lilian picked out bright hot pink polka-dot curtains.  Which necessitated putting away the sweet, mellow, homemade matching puff quilts and bringing out the polka-dot bedspreads that Rebekah and Julianne used after they grew a little older....and decided they wanted something more modern than sweet, mellow, homemade matching puff quilts. 

Lilian is an artist.  And a hoarder...of all artistic masterpieces along with every card, note, certificate and picture she's ever been given.  Oh, I whittle through them all every now and again.  But needless to say her magnet board was completely overcrowded.  So we bought these clipboards and I let Lilian go to town painting them.  Her older sisters decided they wanted in on the fun and painted a couple of them as well.

And these letter frames that had been hanging above Lilian's bed and had to come down when the bed became two...found a new home above the closet.  They look better there anyhow.  (See here)  Oh.  Did I never mention the addition of the bunk beds?  Yeah...Lilian got a wild hare a few months ago and decided she really wished she had bunk beds.  Unbeknownst to her, the bed she was using actually was one of a set, the other bed collecting dust in the storage room.  So much to her delight, we were able to grant that wish easily.
Next up:  the real reason Lilian wants to paint her room...aka Julianne's room re-do.  

Monday, July 16, 2012

No Soliciting

Judging from the amount of door-to-door salesmen I have grudgingly greeted recently, it appears it is time to hang a little sign in my front window.  Today it was a gal from a pest control company.  Despite telling her that my house had already been sprayed, despite assuring her that we were NOT having problems with bugs in our home, she persisted.  And then asked if I could please tell her why when I said I wasn't interested and tried to politely shut the door.  Umm....were you not listening?

I related the story to Bryan and the kids at dinner.  "Well Mom," said Rebekah.  "Of course they come to our house...we're practically the only ones without a 'no soliciting' sign in our window."

"Wait...what did you say?" asked Brandon.  "I thought all those signs said 'no socializing'!"
This gave me a bit of a giggle.  Seeing as our neighborhood is chock full of the most social people you'll ever meet.

A more thorough definition of the word soliciting was next on the dinner conversation agenda.  Along with how much I dislike door-to-door salesmen...conflicting with my thoughts on sending our LDS missionaries out to knock doors and how I hope they are received kindly even if they are being turned away.  That it is a good reminder for me, when faced with a door-to-door salesman, to add some kindness to my dismissal.

"So, are you going to make a 'no solidifying' sign for our door now, Mom?" asked Brandon when I was done.
Yes, that's exactly what I'm going to do!  "No solidifying" at my door.  No siree bob.  If you knock on my door you better be prepared to stay at least 60% liquid!

Sunday, July 15, 2012


It's our 19th wedding anniversary today.
To celebrate we had dinner last night at The Roof restaurant in Salt Lake City.  It's on the 10th floor of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and has floor to ceiling, wall to wall windows that overlook the Salt Lake Temple.  The view is phenomenal.  We were witness to two separate marriage proposals while we were there.  Is it strange if I admit that I got a little teary?  The sweetness of it all, yes.  But watching it all while we were there to celebrate our own marriage of course brought back a flood of memories for me.  Of our own proposal and then the wedding a few months later.  But mostly just the overwhelming feeling of goodness and happiness of the 19 years that followed.  

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Singing at Cherry Hill

My singing group, Witness, sang a concert at Cherry Hill a couple of weeks ago as part of their summer weekend concert series.  Not only did the hour long show go off without a hitch, but glory be...it was fun!!!  Thankfully, because it made all that hard work worth it....oh my, did we spent A LOT of time getting ready for this!  We debated long and hard about our song list...and then started searching for accompaniment tracks.  The concert being outside meant there was no possibility of any live piano accompaniment.  Then, as is our tradition, we got to work on writing harmonies, descants and special arrangements of all of our music.  Putting together a theme for the program, writing little segue's in between each number, staging, choreography....we even had specific assignments for who brought which stools, benches and microphones on and offstage for each number.  And we practiced...boy did we practice!  Even when Catrina went to McCall, Idaho with her family for the summer (she made the long 7 hour drive back specifically for the concert) we rehearsed with her via Skype.  All of us singing and dancing on both sides of the computer monitor.      

 Want to know one of the highlights of the evening?  Funny enough, it actually had nothing to do with singing.  We had just finished the concert, the audience was milling about, we were greeting family members and friends when a woman approached me and asked, "You're Sarah, right?"  I knew immediately who she was even though we had never met before.  It was Jewels...my blogging buddy! (See here)  I was absolutely delighted to finally meet her in person...which is funny because since I've been reading her blog for so long, I feel like I already know her!  She had read on my blog a few weeks earlier that I would be singing at Cherry Hill, checked Cherry Hill's website for the exact date...and then brought her husband for date night.  :)  It actually meant a great deal to me that she would make the effort to come hear me sing.  And hey, Jewels...(cause I know you are reading this) I wasn't kidding when I suggested lunch!  Let's plan it!

Bryan captured quite a few silly faces during my solo....
I was singing Practically Perfect from "Mary Poppins."  Which is funny seeing as these expressions on my face are far from the prim and proper faces I would expect Mary Poppins to make....

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

It's too darn hot

This right here...this is why summer is my least favorite of all 4 seasons.  102 is absolutely, without a doubt, too unbearably hot.  In my opinion the hottest summer should ever get is 85 degrees.  Plenty hot enough to swim, but not so much that you bake.  My flower beds are filled with weeds and my lawn is going unmowed because I can't stand the thought of doing yard work in these temps.  I just don't handle heat well.  My face turns bright cherry red, I get unpardonably irritable, and then I start feeling lightheaded.  Next thing I know I'm on the ground with my head between my knees.  Trust me, it's not a pretty picture.

So today we went to Cherry Hill to combat the heat.  I carefully picked a spot that would have full shade the entire time we were planning to stay.  And then spent my time either floating around in the water or sitting on my lounge chair in the shade.  I have to admit, it was rather funny watching people do the "holy-wow-my-feet-are-burning-(!!!)-on-the-concrete" dance as they made their way between pools and waters slides barefoot.  You know the dance I'm talking about....the one characterized by a lot of hopping, skipping and running, accompanied by outbursts such as "oooh, ooh, ooh!!" or "hot, hot, hot!!!" or "ouch, ouch ouch!!!"  And yes, the outbursts are almost always bunched in threes with many exclamation points.  I got pretty good at the dance myself today.

I'm looking forward to the weekend and the forecasted thunder storms with their slightly lower temperatures.  Regardless of the fact that meteorology is not an exact science and I have been let down time and time again with promises of rain or snow or pleasant temperatures or what have you, that didn't materialize....I am once again holding out hope.  Because at this point, what else can I do?  You know...other than sequester myself inside hermit-style for the foreseeable future...

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Independence Day

You want to know the best part of today?  It wasn't necessarily the 5k or the parade or even the fireworks...although they did play a part.  No...it was breakfast.  And not that the big town breakfast was more impressive than usual, really.  The pancakes, eggs and ham were good, of course.  But as I sat there downing my food, I looked around and was struck by all the people around me.  Business was booming and there were hordes of people milling around and sitting at tables.  Some wearing running attire having just come from the 5k like me, others decked out in their red, white and blue Independence Day finery.  But all of them part of our community.  And I realized that this holiday, more than any other is about just that.  Friends, neighbors, townsfolk, community, Americans....all coming together to celebrate our history and our culture.  Which is why, I realized, that I try so hard to really support and participate in our community Independence Day celebrations.  Why I don't treat it as just a nice day off to lounge around the house.  I want to feel that community, American spirit.  And as I looked around at all my local townsfolk and thought about all of this, I admit I got a little emotional. 

 Despite the fact that Julianne did NOT love running the 5k last year, she accepted the invitation again.  Why?  Because she had "run a 5k" on her summer bucket list.  Go figure.  The muttered comments ie: "stupid running," and "I hate this" etc. were not quite as bad as last year.  But all the same, this 5k for her was something to be tolerated or endured rather than enjoyed.  Brandon surprised me by agreeing to run.  I think it's because I kept telling him that despite the fact that he could run faster than me, I was doubtful that he could keep it up for a longer distance than just a mile.  About a minute into the race, he turned to me and said, "See you at the finish, then?" and took off in his little Vibram five-finger shoes.  And yes, he finished his 5k in 29:58....a good 6 minutes before me.  But in my defense, maybe I could've kept up with him had I not been trying to encourage Julianne who had an awful side ache (along with her lovely attitude.)  She fully claims that had I ditched her she would've been cursing me in her head.  :)

(We tried to keep cool with a bunch of little hand-held, battery operated fans and lots of drinking water. )

Extreme heat and I don't get a long.  Which is why, though I love living in a place that has four distinct seasons, summer is my least favorite.  But the 4th of July is a day where I will happily and willingly tolerate the heat and the sweat rolling down my back to enjoy the festivities.  I love me a good Independence Day parade.  I was a little disgruntled this year, though.  With sirens blaring, the fire department rolled truck after truck down the parade route.  Then the police motorcycles.  The city council drove by in various convertible cars.  The cheerleaders and the (huge) high school marching band came next.  All good stuff, but I'm thinking "Where is the flag????"  My favorite part of the whole parade...standing up with all my neighbors and townsfolk up and down the route, all of us with hand over heart as the flag goes by at the very beginning of the parade, and then the reverence and deference for our country's flag dissolving into grateful applause and cheers for the veterans that come next.  This is not only the best part of the parade, but the most important, in my opinion.  Where was it???  After the marching band, finally they came.  And the flag didn't come by on it's own accompanied by a color guard...no, it was just on the back of one of the veterans trucks.  I have to admit, I was deeply disappointed.  Seemed to me that the parade organizers got it terribly wrong this year.

This year I got talked into letting Lilian join the mini cheer camp run by the local high school cheerleaders...a few of which live in our neighborhood.  Cheer leading is really not my thing....at least not for my 5-year old.  I'm not really a fan of young kids shaking their booty and doing moves that make them look like they are 5 going on 16....that's just my opinion.  But I liked helping my neighbors with their fundraiser and Lilian enjoyed going to the cheer camp with her friends.  They performed at the big carnival right after the parade and I have to admit, Lilian did look pretty cute.  Plus, she adores her new t-shirt....

 We were hugely thankful for the invite from a friend to swim in her backyard pool.  I was feeling much like a baked potato and spent absolutely no time on social niceties beyond saying hello before jumping in the pool.  Ahhh...  A few hours of swimming and relaxing under a shade umbrella was just the thing I needed to recover from the heat of the parade and steel myself for the upcoming warmth of the outdoor BBQ and fireworks to come.

Luckily the evening wasn't as broiling and while the kids ran happily amok, we enjoyed good food and the company of great neighbors.  The stereo providing the soundtrack to our evening turned into a karaoke and dancing contest this year once again.  Apparently this is becoming a neighborhood tradition.  And then the music died down in favor of the booms and whistles of fireworks when it got dark enough.  And wow, what a show!  Enough oohs and ahhs to make you feel like you were at a professional show.  What can I say, our neighborhood takes their fireworks seriously.  :)  It was a tiring but happy day.  I love the 4th of July!