Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sunday Inspiration

'One of the greatest values . . . is the virtue of honest work. Knowledge without labor is profitless. Knowledge with labor is genius'

Gordon B. Hinckley

Thursday, March 24, 2011

slow down, you move too fast


has my dad's eyes, especially in this picture.
was so angry with me until I took him to play where the other children were.
put his toes in Puget Sound for the first time today.
started signing the word "more" for more food.
will eat almost anything put in front of him.
is seven months old today.
is breaking my heart with how fast it all happens.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

"How do they do that?"


We're turning off cable and switching to a netflix/hulu combination. Subsequently, this boy has developped a love for prehistoric documentaries by national geographic. He'll request them over cartoons, which does this mama's heart so good.

Until we have to answer the question:

"Hey, guys? What's fertilization? How do they do that? What does the daddy dinosaur give the mommy dinosaur?"

Then we're in real trouble.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Worst and Best

I'll explain this picture in a moment. Just know it definitely makes me wish I'd brought the real thing instead of my phone. Stinky is the joyful green blur in the middle of the picture.

We've started a new dinner time tradition in our house. Each of us shares the worst and best parts of our day,and sometimes we talk about what happened, other times it's just fun to share. We invite dinner guests to share this with us, and I hope it doesn't make them feel awkward. I know it's not a tradition that's unique to our family, but it's a nice way to start winding down the day, and to hear other family members' perspectives.

An unexpected bonus of this nightly tradition is that when I look back at the end of the day to find what the worst part of it was, it's rarely as bad as I felt like it was in the moment. That perspective has helped me in the moment, as well, to remember that most frustrations will feel like nothing at all by day's end.

*We attended a play directed by our high school drama teacher (different high school now). At one point, the audience gets to come dance on stage. Stinky was in heaven. His best that night was "dancing on stage." Worst was "when I had to get off stage." Look out world.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Sunday Inspiration

Our task is to become our best selves. One of God's greatest gifts to us is the joy of trying again, for no failure ever need be final.

Thomas S. Monson

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cookie Friday: Not Cookies

My, things got serious around here this week. Let's lighten up with a hefty serving of sugar!

St. Patrick's Day Goodies

WBH made the popcorn balls and I made the cupcakes. Sure it's past St. Patty's, but no one's saying they have to be green!

Popcorn Balls: In sauce pan over medium heat, heat 2/3 cup corn syrup and 1 package of green jello until dissolved. allow to cool a few minutes. Pop a bowl of popcorn- pour jello mixture over popcorn. stir, and form into balls with greased hands.

While eating them, please enjoy this video about corn syrup.

1 stick butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups flour
2 Tbs milk
1 orange( for use with cupcakes and frosting)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and zest orange. Blend butter, sugar and eggs. In separate bowl, mix flour, salt, baking soda and half of orange zest. Add half of this mixture to egg/sugar blend. Add milk and squueze in juice from half of orange. Add remaining dry ingredients. Spoon into muffin cups and bake for 12-15 minutes.

Frosting: ( This one is much less exact than the cupcakes. )
1 cup softened butter cut into cubes
4 cups powdered sugar
remaining orange zest
juice from remaining orange half

Blend first three ingredients. Squeeze juice from orange half into frosting and add milk by the tablespoon until desired consistency is reached.

These will have a lot more orange flavor on the second day, so make ahead if possible. Enjoy!



I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend

Lucky to have been where I have been

Lucky to be coming home again

I'm lucky we're in love every way

Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed

Lucky to be coming home someday


Monday, March 14, 2011


I'm writing this in my parents' living room while in the background, the news is playing, It's hard to look at- footage of the tsunami, interviews with those missing their loved ones. I have to confess that in the last few days I've been guilty of turning off the news, or scrolling the news page down to celebrity gossip. It's a little too much to think about for me, the loss and devastation. Already, I'm wishing for a little more Charlie Sheen. Anyone else missing "Winning..?"

I don't mean to be offensive. I'm not in a place to give much financially. I'm definitely not in a place to drop everything and help. All I have is my prayer, and the desire to do a little better by my family and friends from here on out.

Dear Stinky


Dear Stinky,

Today you experienced death for the first time. As we knew would happen, one of your fish went belly-up. It was so tempting to wait until you were distracted and scoop him out before you noticed. We could have avoided the tears, the fishy funeral, the sadness in learning about this part of life.

But we can't do that. It's part of life, and part of why pets are important. So I told you that Mickey was dead, and you cried. You cried when I told you, and you cried as you said "Good-bye. Thanks for being a good fish. I'll miss you so much." Then you ran away and I gave him a burial at sea, because you didn't want to bury him in the flowers you and your dad planted together. Then we talked and you cried some more and I cried a little too, because some parts of life are ugly and hard and I can't keep thm away from you forever.

I can soften them, though, with a big glass of chocolate milk and snuggles, and I can teach you about what we believe about life after death. I can wipe away tears, yours and mine, and be there for you when you feel this sad. That has to be enough, even though it doesn't feel like it is, but I love you, and I'll always be there, with a hug and a big glass of chocolate milk.



Friday, March 11, 2011

{this moment}


Joining SouleMama for this moment today. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

"and I'll get better and better."

after catching the garter at a wedding.

Stinky: "Mom, I made a butterfly. It's a baby butterfly who can't fly because he's so little. But he keeps trying, and trying, and he'll get better. And he has a mommy named what Daddy calls you: Rachael."

Me: "Are you my butterfly who can't fly yet, but keeps trying and trying?"

Stinky: "Yeah. And I'll get better and better."

I'll remember that.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Iron Craft Challenge: Fat Quarter

makeup bag.

After coming up completely blank on last week's craft for the movie theme, this week I was excited to see the challenge theme. Use no more fabric than a fat quarter. Challenge accepted! I love fat quarters. I also love The Pleated Poppy's bags, and have been in need of a new makeup bag for the stuff I use everyday (or would use everyday if I remembered). This is the result, and is sort of thrown together-ish, using this tutorial as a guide.

Garden Therapy

I spent time in our garden yesterday. My nails got dirt under them as I ripped out the grass that crept in over the winter. I was really therapeutic, tearing out the things that would hinder the progress of the good things we want to grow, and kind of a metaphor, too. I'm thinking about the things I need to weed out of my mind right now.

What do you need to weed out, literally and figuratively, this spring?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sunday Inspiration

I saw this on a friend's blog the other day, and it really spoke to me. It's easier said than done, though, when your child has painted himself, the bathroom, and the carpet, black with an inkpad.

"We must be so careful in speaking to a child. What we say or don't say, how we say it and when is so very, very important in shaping a child's view of himself or herself. But it is even more important in shaping that child's faith in us and their faith in God. Be constructive in your comments to a child-always. Never tell them, even in whimsy, that they are fat or dumb or lazy or homely. You would never do that maliciously, but they remember and may struggle for years trying to forget-and forgive. And try not to compare your children, even if you think you are skillful at it. You may say most positively that "Susan is pretty and Sandra is bright," but all Susan will remember is that she isn't bright and Sandra that she isn't pretty." Praise each child individually for what that child is, and help him or her escape our culture's obsession with comparing, competing, and never feeling we are enough. "

Jeffrey R. Holland

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

I Don't Want to Live on the Moon


There's a sweet song from Sesame Street that Ernie sings, I Don't Want to Live on the Moon, where he dreams of travelling to the moon, under the sea, to the jungle and through time, but muses that while he'd love to see the sights, his heart really lies with his family and loved ones. Stinky and I love singing this song together. As I drove him home after preschool the other day, I thought about the lyrics in a deeper way than I usually do as we're singing in the car.

There are still moments when I miss the freedom of time that existed before motherhood. I think nostalgically about going shopping and the only person I had to say "no, not today" to was myself. I sometimes think about the projects I could be doing instead of pre-treating soiled laundry, or even writing a blog post with both of my hands.

But the truth is, while I sometimes miss that freedom, the projects, it wasn't really that great. I wanted these boys, and the life they make so exhaustingly awesome. So I'll join Ernie in singing today:

I'd like to visit the jungle, hear the lions roar,
go back in time and meet a dinosaur,
There's so many strange places that I'd like to be,
but none of them permanently.

So if I should visit the moon,
well, i'll dance on a moon beam and then,
I will make a wish on a star
and I'll wish I was home once again.

Though I'd like to look down
at the earth from above,
I would miss all the places
and people I love.

So although I may go, I'll be coming home soon.
No I don't want to live on the moon.

Edit: A friend of mine posted a link to an awesome performance of this song. Check it out here.