Saturday, May 31, 2008

It's Official

Yesterday was the last day of school and it's officially summer vacation. The kids are stoked and mom is. . . happy, too. Yeah. She's happy. *Fake smile*

The kids are looking forward to carefree days without school and hours of playtime. Jason's looking forward to shorter work days and a school building empty of students or parents (so he can really get stuff done.) And really, I am looking forward to having some more time for fun with the kids and baking in the sun by the pool.

Not only is it officially summer, but I am officially finished with preschool.
Here are some pics of Senea's preschool graduation.

Isn't she just the cutest graduate?!

With Ms. Wendy, our favorite preschool teacher (and awesome neighbor and friend, too).

My baby's ready for Kindergarten!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Domestic Glamor


I am the newest blogger for a blog called Domestic Glamor: for the space between mom and woman called Womom. I've got the domestic part down, and still have a ways to go on the glamor bit, but hopefully readers can chuckle along with me on the journey. Go check it out!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I Did It!

I Did It!! *Happy Dance*

That's right. Yesterday I ran the Memorial Day 5K race to raise money for the widow and 3 kids of Ryan Cox. It was even raining, which deserves an extra pat on the back for me, cold-wimp that I am. I just bundled up in my sweats, hat, and gloves. And I did it! (Happy Dance Encore)

I was excited to see so many friends and neighbors there. I won't list them all because I'm sure I'll miss some of you since the place was PACKED! The highest entry number we saw was 1000. *Whistle* I was Number 292, which is now my lucky number of the week. My cute sister-in-law Marissa came down and ran with us. Way to go, Marissa! (And yes, she does look like Reese Witherspoon. A lot.)

Though I never would have admitted it, as I stood in the mob milling around the starting line, I had the nebulous dream that I might try to place or something. It was a completely irrational idea, considering I've only gone running 3 times in the last two months, but who said dreams are rational? So I was pondering this idea until the guy with the megaphone suggested the slower runners move toward the back. Right on the starting line a bunch of guys ripped off their track pants to reveal those runner shorts that are little more than loincloths. Then they bent down and got into starting positions. On the wet street. In the cold rain. Remember, I had gloves. And I could tell by the muscles on the newly-bared legs that these guys meant serious business.

The gun went off and those guys exploded and were gone. *Pop* There went my dream.

Next dream: finish. Okay, that's more do-able. And I did it! I ran the whole way, didn't die or feel like puking, and am not so sore today that I can't walk. That spells success to me.

They told me they will be posting times and results on the internet tomorrow, so I won't give my time until I know exactly where I placed. But I'll let you all know as soon as I do.

Yippee! That was so much fun. I am so doing it again. When is the next 5K? Maybe some of those ripped runner guys won't show up for that one.

Hey, a girl can dream...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Father & Son Campout

Jason and the boys went on a Father/Son campout last weekend and had a blast. Jason won the Fear Factor contest, which included such disgusting feats as drinking vinegar, eating oysters, and holding his breath in a bucket of ditch water the longest. My hero!!

Here are a few pics.

How do we set up this tent again?

I understand Mike Priddis lit the bonfire in style:
with rockets, lots of gasoline, and some sort of wire hooked up to a car battery.

They camped with all the other fathers & sons at a ranch far from civilization and modern plumbing. That didn't stop them from watching the Jazz playoff game though, thanks to someone with a satellite, a projector, and the know-how to set it all up.

Yep. They were really roughing it. :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

A friend of mine belongs to some sort of blogging group/club that lists 13 things on some topic every Thursday. You actually sign up for the group, club, clique—whatever, and from what I can gather you agree to visit the blogs of other “Thirteeners” on a regular basis. I think you also have a set topic list or something.

Even though it’s an interesting idea, it sounds more like something that could easily distract me and help me waste time at the computer (like I need any more help doing that!). But I kinda like the idea, so I’m going to steal it and do a Thursday Thirteen on whatever I feel like, whichever Thursday I feel like.

I suppose I could take the idea and tweak it so it wouldn’t “technically” be stealing. Maybe a Tuesday Two? (Bo-ring. Are two things even a list?) A Monday Million? (Yeah, right! But can you think of another number that starts with M? Hmmmm?) Let’s see, a Saturday Seven? (Maybe. But who has time to do that on Saturdays?)

Nah! Thursday Thirteen rip-off it is. So… drum roll, please… here is my Thursday Thirteen #1.

Thirteen Reasons This Never-ending, Drizzly, Dismal, Horrific, Drive-You-Crazy Rain/Snow is Good

(Really, it is good. I know there has to be at least 13 reasons. I’m a sun worshipper and I’m trying to do the whole positive attitude thing.)

You know, that title doesn't look that positive. Let’s try this again. Drum roll….

Thirteen Reasons This Interminable Rain/Snow is Good (I can do this)

  1. It’s good for my lawn. (And really, my neighbors are jumping up and down for anything to improve my crappy lawn – Ooooh. I feel another Thursday 13 idea coming on.)
  2. I can turn off my sprinklers. (Which means I don’t have to pay so much to water my crappy lawn.)
  3. It is good for my newly planted vegetable garden. (YES! I got it all planted this week and my cute little tomato, pepper, cucumber, cantaloupe, squash, zucchini, onion, and green bean plants are so happy for some rain. I just love those cute little guys… Ahem. Sorry. I digress.)
  4. My purple perennial flowers that I can’t remember the name of and obviously aren’t meant for hot desert summers just love the cool weather.
  5. It helps keep the streets clean.
  6. It’s easier to pull weeds after it rains. (And did anyone notice my parking strip weed party is almost all gone? Go me!)
  7. It’s good for the new strawberry plants I put in too. Mmmmmm. Strawberries…
  8. I get to wear my super soft fuzzy red sweater that I just love one more time.
  9. The kids can’t play outside and flop all over the house complaining how “There’s nothing to do.” Oh, wait. That’s not positive. Let’s try that again. I don’t have to worry about my kids getting sunburnt. Whew! Better.
  10. Because it’s cool and I’m wearing jeans I don’t have to shave my legs. (I know. I’m really stretching now. What number am I on?)
  11. I don’t have to worry about touching up the polish on my toenails.
  12. The cars make really cool swishing sounds as they go down the street.
  13. Ummmm…Let’s see…The rain is good because…Just give me a moment… I know! It is good because the clouds crouch low over the mountains and give a slightly Irish feel everywhere I look which is cool. And it smells awesome.

Yea! I did it! I'm feeling a 13 Reasons My Lawn is So Crappy coming on...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Belly laugh - I just had to share

For the laugh of the day:

Author Robison Wells was able to procure the coveted opportunity to interview Edward Cullen of Twilight fame. That's right, fans (and those who are not fans-like Mr. Wells) for a good laugh pop by the Six LDS Writiers and A Frog Blog or Click here.

Just scroll down until the May 20th blog (or until you see the picture of Edward).

**Spoiler** A werewolf drops by too.

Rewind to Colorado Trip

I fully intended to post these pictures a couple weeks ago, but you know how things can get. So today we're going to do a little rewind to our trip to Colorado for Cory's wedding. We promised the boys we would go hiking, so we ended up on the Colorado National Monument during our 24 hour trip, and here are some pics!

Mom and the kids are ready to go! We hiked from the bottom of the Independence Monument trail. (It doesn't hurt that you don't have to pay the entrance fee to hike from here, either). I haven't been on the trail in over 10 years, and it was neat to see how much I remembered.

Brennan and Ian really liked this striped rock. It's striated sedimentary sandstone (to throw a little alliteration and smart geology talk in).

Brennan and Senea climbing rocks. Brennan said it was slippery and hard to stay still for the picture. They also really liked the jet trail in the sky.

One of the lizards we saw. This one had an intact tail. Brennan was the first one to spot a lizard, and it didn't have a tail, but the picture was fuzzy.

Ian-- King of the Monument.

Senea and daddy. She was a little nervous so she clung to Jason.

Feeling a little more comfortable now.

Great view!

Who says the desert is ugly?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Super Yummilicious Little Lemon Cakes

1 box yellow cake mix
16 oz. sour cream
2 eggs
2 (or more) lemons
butter, softened

You will need microwave safe coffee cups or little bowls. This makes app. 10 cakes.

Mix cake mix, sour cream, and eggs. Zest one lemon (grate the rind on a teeny-tiny grater-do not grate the fruit) and add to the mix.

Slice second lemon into thin slices.

Grease coffee cups with butter, then pour some sugar in and move around until inside of cup is coated with a thin layer of sugar.

Place lemon slice in the bottom of 5 cups. Pour mix on top until cups are half full. Microwave all 5 cups for six minutes. Turn upside-down on plate. *Tap on the sides of the cup to loosen cake.

Clean cups and make 5 more.

Serve topped with whipped cream. (Remove lemon before eating.)

**We had this tonight with the Wimmers and it was a huge hit. It's easy and perfect for summer because you don't have to heat up the oven.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Review for Enjoying the Journey

Hey everyone! My book, Enjoying the Journey, received a good review from Media Reviewer Tristi Pinkston on YEA!!!

"I came away from this book feeling uplifted, inspired to keep moving forward, and with a greater appreciation for all the things with which I truly have been blessed."

Click here to read the full review.

***Happy Dance***

Friday, May 9, 2008

What I Really Want for Mother's Day

We are just days away from the big holiday for moms. The men I pass in the store are starting to get that panicked, deer-in-the-headlights, what-in-the-world-am-I-going-to-get-her look about them. And some of the women, too, because we all know it's the wife that gets the mother-in-law Mother's Day gift. With enough choices to drive anyone mad, and retailers who are more than happy to throw all of them at consumers, what do you get the mothers in your life?

There are definitely gifts you need to avoid at all costs: kitchen appliances, vacuum cleaners, power tools, etc. There are some classics, too. Many mothers appreciate flowers—assuming you haven’t given them flowers for the last five years. You can rarely go wrong with tasteful jewelry (please, nothing that literally shouts “I was the last thing left in the jewelry case late Saturday night) and chocolate is always welcome. Although, swimming suit season is almost upon us, so scratch chocolate. That’s better for Valentine’s Day when we still have a few months to work it off.

I too have joined the masses traveling up and down the store aisles, praying for gift inspiration to descend from above. It’s caused me to take a look at what I, as a mother, really want for Mother’s Day.

The answer? I want a nap. As the mother of three children under ten, a nap definitely tops my list. Actually, any period of time where I am not the official referee, homework enforcer, hygiene guru, short-order cook, impromptu entertainer, chauffeur, planner, lost-thing finder, bill payer, receptionist, and housekeeper would work.

I would also really, really like my pre-mother body back, but I think beyond plastic surgery, that is probably out. I could use the energy I had before each child took half of it at birth. That’s the only explanation I can come up with that explains why they have so much more than me at any given time, day or night. Again, I don’t think that’s a realistic wish.

Don’t despair, because I will also happily take homemade cards, macaroni jewelry, handprints, coupons, or simply an “I Love You, Mommy.” Honestly, moms just want a little recognition for their labor of love. And you can do that more than once a year. That’s all I really need. So, honey, return the vacuum cleaner, okay?

**Disclaimer: Jason would never buy me a vacuum cleaner, but it was a great way to end the blog.**

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

New Blog!!

Hello everyone! I have launched another blog called Book Mom Musings. This is my author blog, where I talk about books, writing, news, and new vocabulary words (I am sooo excited!) You can find it here:

Please go check it out!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

And with a sigh of relief

The wedding festivities are over!

Despite the best attempts of Fate, the death of a grandparent, emergency surgery, and Mandi's brakes dying on the verge of the trip over, my brother, Cory Bickmore, is officially a husband,
and Mandi is now officially part of the family.

Be afraid, Mandi. Very afraid.

May 1st, the day of the wedding, dawned bright and . . . snowy?! That's right, folks. We woke to white on the lawn and white-out conditions that made the photographer late. *Sigh* Spring in Utah: where the weather suffers from Multiple Personality Disorder. It doesn't come in like a lion, and leave like a lamb, it alternates between the two on a dizzying basis--and sometimes on the same day!

The ceremony was bee-you-ti-ful, and despite the fact that the bride and groom were 15-20 minutes late, they did arrive, squelching the rumors that one had fled at the last minute. I must admit that I shed tears of happiness (and it was not because we were talking and laughing about creative ways to stuff my bra, Lori-ann. Although that was pretty amusing. ) I was grateful for the Kleenex I stuffed in my purse when I saw the joy on Cory's face. Mandi is the biggest sweetheart and is so good for him. The girls in the family promise not to corrupt her too much.

The wedding luncheon, put on by yours truly, was a success. Complete with 4 times more food than needed and a truly moving musical tribute of The Love Boat by Robert Cunningham.

I'm afraid that the video of the performance jiggles constantly up and down and will make any viewer slightly sick. I was laughing so hard I couldn't keep the camcorder still. Mandi's family wasn't sure what to expect. They kind of had a shell-shocked look on their face. Until they saw the rest of us busting up laughing, then they realized it was okay to chuckle.

Ryan Byrd, long-time friend and roommate, toasted the haggard newlyweds (it had been a really long week). He wondered out loud about the wisdom of Cory choosing him, since he is a 34 year-old bachelor and could give very limited advice on women. That's okay, Ryan. We like you anyway. You're the only bachelor left of the group, though. Watch out!

**We interrupt this blog for an important news announcement. Jaime would like to thank the wonderful friends that made the luncheon possible, since she was driving back and forth from Bountiful. Lynett--you are a life-saver! Kristi, Annette, and Lisa, thank you soooo much for making the soup. And Natalie and Rebecca, who risked life, limb, and 2nd degree burns transporting boiling soup for me--I owe you big time. You guys are the best!! Chocolate chip cookies are coming your way!!**

Next came the dash up to Jason's parents house for the reception. The Thelers are the bomb for letting us use their beautiful house! Cookies don't seem nearly enough for that. I'll have to think of something good.
Senea was star-struck with Mandi in her "princess dress" with her bouquet.

Then it was another mad dash, this time 4 hours of driving to Colorado for the next wedding reception in Mandi's hometown (and mine) of Grand Junction. Lori-ann of the gorgeous singing voice sang "Only Hope" in honor of the occasion (check out her ethereal vocals at The newlyweds mixed and mingled, cut the cake, and then escaped for the 4 hour drive back to Utah so they could leave on their honeymoon to HAWAII the next day. Way to go, guys! We hope you're having a blast. Oh, and Cory, if you read this before you get back, your car is making a weird buzzing noise out in our driveway. Call me.

Jason jumped in and helped out in that wonderful way of his. He scooped gallons of ice cream, ran food back and forth, and generally helped out however he could. What a great behind-the-scenes guy!

Whew! What a busy time. We can't wait to do it again in . . . oh . . . 4 weeks when Danielle gets married. Yikes! Hopefully I will have caught up on sleep by then :)

We love you, Cory. And we wish you the very best and a lifetime of happiness!