Friday, February 27, 2009

My brother and his unit came back today. They have been gone for just about a year serving in Afghanistan.

We weren't able to go to the base to meet the plane because of the sickness going around here, but they showed Scott during their story on Channel Two. You can see the whole story here-
I happened to be recording when the story came on, so I paused it and took some pics of Scott and his cute wife.

My mom said that they lined the street that they live on with flags and had lots of flags in their yard and lining their sidewalk. She took pictures. She said she would share.

I Love you, Scott! I wish we could've been there. Thank you so much for your sacrifice and your service. We appreciate you!!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

So, we've had sickness since Sunday.

This is Ben as we left for Church.

And this is what I saw when I came back after running an errand yesterday.

Mike has not been feeling good since Monday. He's had a temperature between 102 and 103 on and off since Monday afternoon, but he hasn't been able to take any time off work. They are closing their Salt Lake office, and since Mike is in charge, he's had to be there to pack things up. He's been moving desks, filing cabinets, shelves, files, etc. There is no one working in that office (because they're closing it) so Mike has done it all by himself.

When I came home last night, he was wrapped in a blanket shivering, had a temp of 103, and told me that he was in trouble because he had just passed out for a minute. I called my friend who is a nurse and told her the symptoms and asked if I should be worried. She said, "well, yeah." I called Mike's doctor and he said it was either influenza or pneumonia. In either case, he should go to the hospital and have an IV. So, I called Mike's Dad and he agreed to come take Mike to the hospital for me. They left just after 8:00pm and Mike got home around 11:45pm. He said they waited in the waiting room for about an hour and a half before he was even seen. They gave him some saline and some medication in it, checked him out, and declared that he has the Influenza type A. Of course we did not have flue shots this year. It is highly contagious so don't come visit. We love you too much to share.

Josh has had it and is on the down slide. He was supposed to go to a winter camp out on Friday. You know the kind. Dig a trench in the snow, lay out a tarp, put your sleeping bag on top and climb in. Then you cover yourself with another tarp and hopefully you don't freeze to death in the night. He was really excited about going, but we told him that we really don't want to spend a week in the hospital with him having pneumonia. Maybe he'll get to go on the next one.

Emma was sick all day yesterday, but is doing a little better today. Aaron was sick tuesday, but he's good now. Kimi was up all night with a fever and throwing up. I thought that maybe it would pass me up, hoping it would pass me, but I woke up feeling achy and coughing.

The biggest bummer about this is that my brother is arriving home tomorrow morning. We were planning to go out to the base to meet his plane. The kids were excited, I was excited, the whole family was looking forward to being there. Now, we'll have to wait to see him. I really don't want to get anyone else sick.

So, this is what we're doing today.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I kindof feel like a slacker.

I know it's been just a couple of days since I last posted, but I feel like it's been forever.

First off, I was tagged. Here are six weird facts about me.

1. When I eat a sandwich, or toast, or a slice of bread, I always eat all the side crusts first. Down one side, across the bottom, then down the other side.Then I eat the middle, leaving the top crust for last.

2. I have probably twelve or thirteen (at least) notebooks that I write in. Lists of things, favorite quotes, ideas, etc. It makes me mad when I pull out a notebook and someone has taken the pen that was attached to it.

3. I have the ugliest heels you will ever see.

4. I have a pizza eating thing too. I pull off the crust, eat the pizza from large end to small, then eat the crust until it's just a small sliver of bread, then I eat it.

5. I don't mind cleaning up dirty diapers or throw-up, but I really hate to empty the dishwasher.

6. I generally hate calling people on the phone. I don't mind talking to people on the phone, I just hate making the call.

Now I tag (in alphabetical order)-Barbara, Jolene, Kati, Kelly, Kris, Sara, Suze, and anyone else who wants to play.


This is what my family did on Monday-

We got on this bus-

and went here-

-the Draper, Utah Temple Open House-

It was such an incredible experience to have my whole family together in the temple.
In the sealing room we were showing the kids how the mirrors reflect back on each other and telling them about the significance of them. I could see my family reflected forever. As we walked out of the room, the sister there asked the kids if they saw their family in the mirrors going on forever. Her husband said to her, "Mom did" because he could see me crying. It was so great. I wish my kids would always remember that.

This is Josh and Emma on the bus back to our parking lot.


Just an update on my photo-a-day project.
I haven't taken a single picture since Monday!
I've taken 193 so far this month, so I think I probably have enough to choose from.


My brother is in Maine today. I don't know why it's taken so long to get to the states from Afghanistan, but it has. I've heard he has some de-briefing in Washington for a week or so, then home. Yay!!!
I don't know how reliable this info is. I'm just glad he's on his way.
(We're still praying for you, Scott!)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Do you notice anything missing?

(This is my laundry room, in case you couldn't tell.)

We were thinking of just replacing our dryer with a used one off the internet. It would've done the job. For awhile.

We went to the Home Depot just to look and decided that it would be a better option for us to buy a new one. A big one. A front loader that would use sixty percent less water and forty percent less electricity. (We decided to replace the washing machine also.) We decided that our kids are still pretty young, and there are many years of laundry ahead of us. It would be worth it in the long run (right?). The new machines would pay for themselves in no time just with the savings on energy and water (right?) And they are big enough that I could do one load instead of three. Ya gotta love savings all around!

Here are some pics of the new occupants of my laundry room. Maybe sometime we can finish the room so they will have more comfortable surroundings.

And not a moment too soon. This is what it looks like when a family of eight doesn't do any laundry for one week.

This doesn't include any of the sheets that need washed (every sheet on every bed) or any towels (every towel in the house is dirty). We also realized after I took this photo that the girls hadn't brought down any of their laundry yet.

The new machines were working all day and we are getting close to seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.


We also have some of this going on around here-

He is such a helper. He's there everytime we turn around. Getting into whatever it is that we are trying to do. His favorite is unloading the dishwasher faster that we can load it. He usually wins that game, unless we relocate him.

Have a great day!


I almost forgot the best thing about this past weekend. It wasn't Valentines day. It wasn't a new set of laundry doers. It wasn't even the date I had with my hubby (sorry, Mike). It was hearing the news that my brother will return from serving for a year in Afghanistan. He will arrive back in the states by Thursday. BOOO YAAA!!!!!!!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I broke the law today.
(unintentionally and definitely not on purpose.)

I filled up my big van with gas on Saturday night. We drove to church on Sunday, and we haven't been anywhere in the car since. My kids are off track so I haven't needed to go anywhere. I loaded the kids up this morning to go get some groceries and to check out some dryers and when I turned on the car it beeped at me. I looked down to see that the thing said "low fuel" and the light was on and the gas gauge was pointing to the big E. I thought, "That can't be right. I just filled it up to the top on Saturday and I haven't been anywhere since then." I usually have to fill it up every three or four weeks depending on how much driving is going on. I turned the car off and then back on. It beeped at me again. I turned it off then back on. It beeped again. I turned it off, back on, then hit the dashboard thinking that maybe the arrow was stuck or something. Everything remained the same. I turned it off and went back in the house and called Mike. I explained to him what was happening. He said, "Sounds like someone siphoned out the gas. You better call the police and report it. Not that they can do anything, but they should know." So, I called. They had me fill out a police report over the phone. You know, when did you notice the gas was gone? Where did you fill it up and when? How much? Where has the car been since you filled it up? What is your address, birthday, spelling of your name? etc. Then the officer said that he couldn't do much about it but file the claim. Then if it started to happen to others maybe they could catch whoever it was and we might get restitution. But, have a nice day!
I got the kids back into the car and went for the groceries. We stopped at the gas station on the way, because, you know, we were out of gas. I proceeded to put gas in the car, but the pump kept clicking off. I only put in a few dollars, thinking that there was something wrong with the pump. When I started the car again, the gauge said it was full. After getting some groceries, I stopped at Auto Zone because Mike wanted me to buy a locking gas cap for the van. The guy there said they didn't sell them for big ugly red vans and I would have to get one from a dealership probably. He asked why I wanted one and after I explained the situation, he said that it sounded like I needed a check with his little machine. He brought it out to the car and it said that my fuel indicator doohickie thingamabob is broken. They conveniently sell them there for about $180.00, but I would have to find someone to install it. I said that I'm pretty handy, could I do it? "Yes," said the man, "you would have to remove the fuel tank and get under there with a flashlight...". "Nevermind," I said, and I thanked him and went home.
I was totally bummed. Maybe Heavenly Father doesn't want us to finish the basement. Maybe there are some valuable lessons that we need to learn first. Maybe we'll spend all the tax refund on a new fuel thingamabob and a new dryer and I'll keep putting all my change in the jar and eventually someday in the future we can finish the basement and move the baby out of our bedroom. Maybe he'll be a teenager by then.
Anyway, I decided that on the way home I better stop by the police station and tell them that I'm a dork and I didn't really get all the gas in my car stolen. I thought that I should probably let them know. We walked in and told the receptionist that I filed a police report that morning about my gas being stolen. She looked at me and said,"are you Michelle?" I said yes and she told me that she would have to call the chief of police. She sits behind a piece of thick glass and talks to you through an intercom. After she pushed the button to turn the intercom off, she made the call. I could see her laughing as she explained the situation. I don't blame her. I was laughing a little too. She told me that they would just take care of it, it is something that happens occasionally, and I won't be in trouble for filing a false police report. I think they decided that they would "take care of it" because they knew that if they arrested me that I would have to bring all my kids with me to jail, and they didn't want to have to put up with that. Could you imagine me and six kids in an eight by ten cell with maybe three other inmates? What a circus that would be! Ha!
I called Mike again when we got home. He said something that sounded like the angels singing. He said, (are you ready?) "Good thing the car is still under warranty and we won't have to pay a thing to get it fixed!" LA! What a lovely man I have to take care of me! I never would have thought of that! He even called the fix-it place, made an appointment that was convenient for me (well, as convenient as could be), and arranged for their shuttle to take me and by brood to my Mom's house to hang out for a few hours until it's fixed. WhooHoo!

Now if I could just figure out how to convince someone that my dryer is still under warranty.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Today is a sad day.
Do you remember this (Tuesday, January 20)?

Well, it only prolonged the life of my dryer for a few weeks. There is a short in some wire or something somewhere that causes the dryer to run all the time. Even when it's off and the door is open. In the five minutes it was plugged in yesterday it got so hot that you couldn't even touch the outside of it.

I can't even tell you how bummed I am. I guess the one sunny spot of this tale is that we just got a tax refund so we have some money we could use. I was just hoping that we could use all of it on finishing the basement.

(Or going to Puerto Rico with Isaac and Sara. Or going to Hawaii with Tom and Barbara.)

Friday, February 6, 2009


The picture on the left was taken on Monday afternoon, February 2.
The picture on the right was taken this afternoon, Friday, February 6.

Eventually we will get to see what's in there.


On a totally other subject-

My baby had a big "first" yesterday. His first McDonald's hamburger.

I don't know when my first one was. Do you?

Have a great day!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I've been tagged!

(I love being tagged!)


8 Shows I Love:
(not necessarily in this order)

1. Grey's Anatomy
2. Survivor
3. ER - apparently I am one of the few to stick with it all these years.
4. The Big Bang Theory - especially the episode entitled "The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis"
5. Heroes
6. Lost
7. The Biggest Loser
8. Private Practice

8 Places I Love To Eat:

1. Red Robin
2. Winger's
3. Mimi's Cafe
4. Javier's
5. Tomato Street - in Spokane and Coeur d'Alene
6. Manuel's El Burrito
7. Macaroni Grill
8. my Mom's house

8 Things I Did Yesterday:

1. Cooked fishsticks for dinner. Because I'm lazy.
2. Checked out all my favorite blogs.
3. Drove around for half an hour hoping that Aaron would fall asleep for a nap only to have him doze off and get a bloody nose and bleed all over the place. He woke up after ten minutes because I couldn't figure out a way to clean him up without waking him.
4. Delivered invites to the Primary activity this weekend. Just to the kids who weren't there on Sunday and to some inactives that I have taken an interest in.
5. Went to parent-teacher conferences, now called SEP conferences. It stands for Student/Educator/Parent if you want to know.
6. Changed diapers.
7. Took a shower.
8. Swept the kitchen floor.

8 Things I Like About This Season
(I'm assuming this means Sprinter, or maybe Wintpring)

1. Sweater weather.
2. Tiny leaves poking out of the ground.
3. Tiny leaves poking out of branches.
4. Not having to shovel the driveway.
5. Seeing my backyard covered with grass.
6. More chartreuse appears in my environment.
7. The sun shining (when there's no inversion) through my windows to heat my house.
8. My skin isn't so painful.

8 Things On My Wish List

1. The basement finished.
2. Andrew out of our bedroom - can only happen after the basement is finished.
3. A bigger kitchen.
4. More peace in my life.
5. A get-away with my husband.
6. A home based business that I could run and be really good at.
7. Dinner to magically appear on the table every night at six o'clock.
8. For my husband to be independently wealthy.
9. More time for me to create.
10. To be more creative. (oops, that's ten. oh well-deal with it!)

8 People's List I Would Like To See
(I don't know if I know 8 people, but here goes.)

1. Kati
2. Sara
3. Barbara
4. Mike
5. Suze
6. Jolene
7. Kelly
8. Angie

Have a fantastic day!
I know that you are all on pins and needles waiting to hear the final total of how many pictures I ended up taking in January 2009. Remember I'm taking one picture a day for a whole year? Well, I think I made my quota, and then some.

My final number is....

(drumroll, please)


Just for January!

Yeah, I know. I need to get a life.


So, I got some devastating news (only to me) the other day. Our elementary school has decided to go back to the traditional schedule starting in August. No more year-round. So I either grit my teeth and deal with it, or I drive my kids 11 miles each way to the nearest year-round school - which by the way is the school they went to before we moved.

Hmmm, decisions, decisions.

I'll keep you posted.


As kindof a side note that sortof applies to the above dilemma, I saw this thought on a blog that I stalk everyday ( She saw it on the blog of one of her friends. Here it is-

What I realized is that there is not just one big moment of courage in our lives. There are many. These moments come to us in different ways. At times we are forced into a leap (unexpected pregnancy, when parents or partners pass away, when we lose our job). At times we are called into a leap (when someone invites us for a trip of a lifetime, when our partner wants to move to a new city, when we are offered a chance, when we take the "money maker" role to support our family). Then there are also the daily tiny leaps we take for the sake of adventure (when we try new types of food, music, when we go out on a date, when we talk to a stranger, when we transition from blogger friends to real life friends). No matter how small, silly or hard, tiny, dramatic or forgotten... All leaps are important because little by little, we live through change, we figure out how to cope, we move forward, we learn who we are, and we build our confidence for the bigger leaps, the ones we seek for ourselves.

I hate change, and I hate "leaping".

Monday, February 2, 2009

I guess it's been awhile since I last posted so here goes-

(I am practicing for the twelve step program that I need to enroll in, so bear with me.)

-okay, deep breath-

I am here to admit that I am lame. I am the lamest. I am so lame at birthdays that one of my sons didn't have a birthday party until he was seven. And that was only because my mom felt so bad for him that she planned one.

Last Thursday was Mike's birthday. I, once again, was a slacker in the planning of any sort of event for this occasion. So, Mike planned for us to go to the Temple and then have his parents take us out for lunch. (Mike also planned to take that day off of work for said plans.) After we got the kids off to school and to the sitter (Thanks, Melissa!) we headed up to Ogden. We went through a session then the parents took us to lunch at the Union Grill in Ogden. We placed our order and then we had a visitor. It was Isaac's mom. She was there with a friend and saw us come in. Back before Christmas she asked this friend to pick up a train hub for the game of domino's next time she went to Mexico. She planned to give this to Mike's parents. She was meeting this friend for lunch because the friend had just gotten back from Mexico and needed to give this train hub to Isaac's mom. She had just done so when we walked in. What a coincidence! So she took it from the friend, walked right over to our table, and gave it to Tom and Barbara. It was great to see her again. I hadn't seen her for awhile and it took me a minute to remember who she was.

I thought it was great that she was giving them a train hub when we were there eating in a train station.

Anyway, back to the lameness of the birthday. Mike and I were so full from lunch that I had no desire to prepare a birthday dinner. This is what we had-

I did let Mike take me out to lunch on Friday for his birthday. We went to Manuel's El Burrito.
He had his usual (the buffet) and I had my usual (three sweet pork enchiladas on flour tortillas). Then when we were done they brought Mike a great big sombrero to wear and an ice cream sundae to eat. He got up and danced with the waitress while they were all singing to him.

Aaron thought that the hat was great and he wanted to wear it, too.

We spent most of the day on Saturday cleaning out the garage. Mike needs everything out of the room that is going to be the girls so he can start on the wiring and things. Therefore, we had to clean out the garage so we could move more things into there. This is a picture AFTER the cleansing.

And this is a picture of my prom dress that will soon be gracing the rack at D.I.

I have no idea why I still have this. I bought it 25 years ago and wore it to all my high school dances that were formal. (What was I thinking?) It cost more than my wedding dress did, in case you were wondering. It cost $88 plus tax and my wedding dress cost $83, plus I only used about half of the material I bought. So I guess my wedding dress really cost somewhere in the neighborhood of forty dollars plus a zipper and some thread.
Anyway, on Sunday Mike made his own birthday cake, which I frosted for him. Yeah, I know. That was big of me, wasn't it.

I was just getting out the candles so we could sing to him and pretend it was his birthday when there was a knock on the door. My cousin Taren, her husband Dan, and three of their kids were on our porch. They came over to invite us to their house to play some games. We explained about the cake and invited them to stay at our house for some games AND cake. Of course, they obliged.

We ate cake, played Apples To Apples, and watched the Super Bowl. It was really fun!


On another note, here is something I saw on my drive today-

I have no idea what is under all that ice. Maybe they have a fountain in their yard or something. I'll have to go past this house in the summer to check it out. It is on 3000 West just south of the junior high, if you want to check it out. I imagine that it is too long of a drive for most of you. If I remember, I'll keep you posted.

The reason I was on a drive was because there are parent-teacher conferences all week so the kids are out early. All week. Usually they are just out early on Fridays. I usually feed the boys some lunch a little early then go for a short drive so they will fall asleep in the car. Then I just go park over to the school and wait until the kids are out. If this doesn't happen, it's a no-nap day and I live with miserable little monsters all afternoon.

So, I hope to be seeing a lot of this this week-

Have a great one!
(by the way - Shout out to Kenn - I heard you on the radio on my drive. You were great!)