Friday, May 28, 2010

Lights, camera, Casey.


If you are someone who watches American Idol I doubt you will ever forget Casey James' audition. He somehow ended up with his shirt off which pretty much sealed the deal for Kara. Talk about eye candy.

Personally, I think Casey is a really good entertainer. Maybe not great, but he was definitely consistent, definitely can sing, and definitely is a very good musician. But make no mistake about it, his looks got him a lot of female votes! Talk about eye candy.

I love a guy with great hair - especially when it looks good in a pony tail, and Casey's definitely does! When he made the top 10 and the show started styling the contestants, they sort of coiffed Casey's hair a little too much. Like I'm pretty sure some nights they had used the flat iron to enhance his curls, which they really didn't need to do since he has one of the greatest heads of hair I've ever seen on a guy. Talk about eye candy.

I had sent a message on facebook to my friend, Diane, telling her she should really try and get tickets to see American Idol and that I would be there in a second. Well, she did ... to the final show. SWEET! So I starting looking into getting cheap air fare and didn't find any. And since I am really needing to go see my girls in Tennessee soon, I decided I couldn't afford to do both so I sadly told Diane I was going to have to pass.


Holy cow. Let's just suffice it to say I was a little distressed that I had missed that show in person - especially since Diane did opt to go without me and ended up sitting in the 7th row. (I can't even talk about it.)

But! Because I love Diane, and she loves Casey, and she got to SEE Casey really up close and personal, I decided that I truly was happy for HER!!!!! I had told Diane all along that I thought Casey looked like he could be one of her boys. He has a similar look to her kids, but talk about eye candy.

Well, when Diane did see him in person, she said he took her breath away. "And there was another woman in her forties too who gasped when she saw him and said he looks even better in person." (So Diane wasn't just saying that. I guess he really does.)

Did you read my post about good genes? (Over here?) I am pretty sure Casey lucked out in the exceptional gene pool ... that skin, his hair, his eyes. Talk about eye candy.

(This post is for you, Diane ... I liked Shibhon!!!)


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Tiny dresses.


I am one of those people who tend to hang on to clothes that I love. Like the silk dress I wore to my 5 year high school reunion. And the one I wore to my 10 year reunion ... that one was really cool. I thought I was very vogue at the time. It was a jacket with really great shoulder pads and a skirt that ballooned at the bottom. You have probably seen skirts like that recently in the department stores. Don't they say styles cycle about every 20 years or so? That would be about right, give or take 10 years ... I am going to take the shoulder pads out of the jacket and start wearing it again. (Not really.)

When I graduated from high school my grandparents would give us kids $500 as a graduation gift. My mother was all about getting something that would last with that money instead of just letting it slip through our fingers on a bunch of nothingness. So my mom and I went shopping and she helped me pick out a really beautiful black velvet suit for $350.00. She said, "This is so classic, it will never go out of style. You can wear it for years to come."

Well ... it really was a classic suit. It even had a vest and bow tie too. It was more like a girl's tuxedo. I did wear it for the next several years. Maybe once a year. Was it worth $50.00 per wear? Um, probably not. But I really did love it and only recently decided it was time to retire it to the thrift store. (But I'm actually not 100% sure of that because it just might still be hanging in my closet. When I get home, I'm gonna check on that.)

The other $250 from my grandma and grandpa was spent on a really great record player/stereo for my dorm room. Now if I still had that item laying around ... a classic for sure.

So! Lest you get the idea (yes, I just used the word lest) that I am even the slightest bit of a hoarder, I will state for the record that I AM NOT. There are just some things that I can be a little sentimental about ... cute little dresses - absolutely!

Sophie has a spare closet in her room and it is filled to the brim with clothes that I thought were too darling to give away. And these little dresses are just a few of them. So when Libby was over the other day it dawned on me that the reason I was even saving any of them was in case my children wanted to use them for their own kids. (Most of them, not so much, unless it will be just to pacify me as their mother for having gone through the trouble of hanging on to them.)

So I gathered the ones that would fit her now, gave them a good overnight soak in Biz, and hung them to dry. It was so fun to see them all in a row in my laundry room.

I sent McCall home with some little soft white shoes that all of my girls wore too and she sent me a text message that said, "Libby has on a pair of those shoes for church and they are to die for!"

So see ... sometimes it works out!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010



I'd like to introduce you to Gary. I met Gary when I first moved into the neighborhood 14 years ago. He and I served on a committee together (not formally a homeowner's association, but one where we were like the enforcers of the CC and R's ... making sure that people followed the rules about house colors, fences and keeping their trash cans hidden.)

Gary walks in our neighborhood every day. One morning while I was walking too, I stopped and chatted with Gary for a little bit. He said he had been walking everyday for over 9 years, never missing a day. That was pretty impressive.

So rain or shine, sleet or snow, Gary is out on his morning walk and waves to every car that passes. And even though you may have never met Gary, you feel like you know him because there he is - sometimes with his umbrella, sometimes with his ear muffs ... sometimes walking with his wife or a friend, and always in his jeans - as a constant in our neighborhood.

A while back I was walking one morning and stopped to chat again with Gary. He said that now he was up to 19 years without missing a day. WHAT? How could it have been that long since we last stopped and chatted???? He had walked another 10 years ... and I had probably walked another 10 days!

Yesterday, when I took this picture of him he hollered out, "7,726 days now!"

I call him our neighborhood Good Will Ambassador. He is a staple, and we all adore him.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Favorite photos ... of you.


When I first thought of doing a post of my readers' favorite photos of themselves I knew that it would probably be the most fun for me ... not you, because going through your photos, whether they be in frames, in boxes, in chronological order, or in complete disarray all over your house is not an easy task. Especially when you are looking for a specific one. So I really do appreciate those of you who were willing to take part - even if it was just for me. (Let's do lunch!)

I heard lots of comments from you like: I don't really have a photo that I love of myself ... I am always the one behind the camera ... I never take a good picture ... I can't find any photos of myself that aren't awful. And I couldn't help but think, "Why, as women, are we so hard on ourselves?" (The younger generation in these photos did NOT, however, have those same things to say. And I will add that the current generation of young women and mothers are so lucky to have the technology of digital. Remember when we use to take several rolls of film at a particular event, drop them off to be developed, and then cross our fingers waiting to see if we had any good ones?)

I knew that two of my sisters would need some prodding to dig for me, so I told them I was on my way to get their photos and each of them, at that moment, started to round up their totes and boxes and files ... and with kids gathered around, had a really good time taking that trip down memory lane. My sister, Leslie said, "Okay, this is inspiring me. I need to lose weight, and I need to get these organized!"

Some of us used current photos, and some had to reach way back to college days to find the time when we remembered being cute. (I wasn't cute in college, so one of us wasn't me.)

What I did find enjoyable was that several of you sent me a few different choices and said, "I can't decide, so you decide for me and then surprise me!" Which meant that you had more than one that you really did like ... and I bet there are even more than those too.

I had also requested that you tell me why you liked that particular photo as well and it was a common response to hear, "It was just such a good, happy time for me." I guess our happiness can be measured in photos too. (Like the recent ones I posted from Mother's Day of me with Libby - that little doll makes me happy and it showed.)

This picture I chose of me was at the end of a long day on my first baby's 2nd birthday. We had invited family and some friends to a park near our house and had pizza and cake, and played some games. It was a good time for me ... I was a new mother with a perfect little daughter (not the least bit a terrible two year old), I was wearing one of my favorite outfits I think I ever owned ... you know how you really just love certain clothes you have and then you just hate it when you either out grow them or they go out of style, which ever comes first?

Sidenote: Okay, that reminds me and I have to share this because it was too funny - when I was at Leslie's house helping her hunt for her favortie picture, which she had in her mind but never was able to locate, she held up a picture from about 8 years ago and showed it to one of her daughters and said, "This is a good one of all of us."

Her daughter looked at the picture and then looked at her mom and said, "Look what you are wearing in that picture mom. Does it look familiar?"

Leslie looked at the picture and then realized that it was the same outfit she was currently wearing. She said, "Well the classics never go out of style do they?" We laughed.

... So even though this picture of me was before I had ever colored my hair, and before teeth whitening was an option, I have always counted it as one of my favorites. I don't really like my picture taken, and I am definitely one of those moms who tend to be behind the lens most of the time, but every once in awhile someone else offers to take my picture and every once in awhile I get lucky and I like it.

And here YOU are:

McCall: There’s something about this picture. It may have been just a fun, fun time, ya know? Seeing Jared after so long…seeing Josh and Brandie...Chicago. I just like it.

Ali: I love this because it's candid. I still to this day have no idea who took it. I also love my red hair. When I picture my own face in my mind this is usually what I see. Big eyes, big eyebrows, statement hair and an armpit. The other reason I love it is because McCall and I used to play a game called "this is how I would crop it" and usually you choose the most unflattering or weird thing in the picture and zoom in. I would definitely crop it on the girl behind me (she is my friend Amber) or a closeup on the gum in my mouth. The last reason I love it is because it was my last night out with my friends in Utah before I moved to L.A. It was so much fun and I will always remember that night. I felt just as happy as I look in the picture.

Megan : I like this picture because it was one of the times I went home to Wisconsin to be with family and we just had a really great time together!


Lisa : This picture of me is at the Tor in Glastonbury, home to King Arthur! I like it because it was a day of great adventure! And because I weighed twenty pounds less!!!! Dang ...

Delanie: This picture was taken during our Christmas card photo session. I was 5 months pregnant with my second child. I love being pregnant and I loved that that baby was a girl.

(And I have to tell you ... Delanie's husband scanned and emailed me this picture, but he also sent me another email that said, "Delanie and I couldn't agree on which one was the best. She liked this one, but this next one is my favorite." And attached to the email was a picute of her in the tub as a skinny, sexy little newlywed! I laughed my head off ... good for you Rob!)

Spring: "Here ... this is my favorite picture." (Spring handed me the photo. I looked at it. I looked closer and although that is her husband in the white shirt, the girl is Christy Brinkley! I laughed at that one too ... see what I said about this being much more fun for me???)

Spring, take #2: This is me back in the BYU days. I had a ton of good guy friends and we had so much fun together! I was playing soccer, riding my bike and I had a lot better body back then before my six kids!

Leslie: This was outside my apartments in college. I had just met the man I was going to marry and was really happy. I loved this sweater too and these are pre-baby hips!!!

Courtney: I love Halloween in general, but this past year I got really, really into making costumes for everyone. Will and I were Oz-ians from the Emerald City. We had so much fun and it's nice to have a picture that makes you look thin!

Diane: This was taken at our 28th wedding anniversary celebration. We took our boys out to dinner with us and they brought their girlfriends too. And I always have fun with my girls!!! I love it when they bring girls around!!!

Vicki: This was John and I having dinner on my 50th birthday. It was at one of our favorite restaurants with one of my favorite views. Having dinner with my best friend and I thought, I don't look too bad for being 50!!!!

Shelly: I just love this picture because it's me and my girls ... MY GIRLS!!!!!

Kimberlie: I love this picture because it was the best trip Drew and I have ever taken. We went to Hawaii and had so much fun. It was a really, really great time in our lives.

Paige: Just thinking about how much I love Jordan sometimes makes me cry. How does life get any better than this?

Thanks so much lovely ladies ...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Hang gliders.



This morning as I was heading out of my neighborhood, I said to Sophie, "It is such a beautiful day. It really is so gorgeous around here, isn't it?" And then as we looked out at the mountains to the west of us, I pointed out the part of the mountain where the Kennecott Copper Mine is and I said, "I don't know if this is really true, but I heard that that is a man-made wonder that you can see from outer space."

Sophie said, "There are a lot of really good things here in Utah. Did you know that Hill Crest High's drill team is fifth in the nation?"

Well ... no I didn't. When she said there are a lot of good things here in Utah I was thinking more along the lines of Zions National Park, the Sundance Film Festival, the 2002 Winter Olympics, our claim on Mitt Romney, Julianne and Derrik Huff of Dancing With the Stars, the Osmonds ...

We chatted a little bit about some of those things and then I said, "It's weird too that if you hang glide and mention 'Point of the Mountain', any paraglider in the world will know what you're talking about." And that's right here in Draper. In our own little neighborhood.

She said, "Really? That's way cool."

Now that the weather has been nicer (well, a few random beautiful Spring days here and there), the gliders are out ... and I love seeing them overhead in my neighborhood.

It's one of the good things in Utah. :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Strawberry jello, fully loaded.


I LOVE strawberry jello! I like lots of other jellos too ... but strawberry is my fav.

I remember hearing once that all teenage boys like jello a lot, but I found that this is not really the case. When we have family functions (even with all the extended family too), there is always jello left over, especially if it has lots of stuff in it - like fruit. The plain jello, that gets eaten. But plain jello? I can pass that up ... that reminds me too much of school lunch, in elementary school (remember how thick and stiff and non descript that was?)

I also consider jello part of the meal - NOT dessert. So when I am taking the time to make a nice meal, I like to have jello. But my kids vote is "pass." What?

So last Sunday, when I was taking the time to make a nice meal, I really, really wanted some jello - strawberry with sugary store bought strawberries from a container and bananas in it. But since I would probably be the only one eating it, for the first time, I made a small box of jello, in a small bowl.

And I was the only one who ate any of it ... but I ate it ... and I loved it ... and it made me happy to have it.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010



I have worn perfume for as long as I can remember ... everyday. I have this "thing" about smelling nice and I love it when people say, "Oh you smell so good, what are you wearing?" I certainly don't get told that everyday and I'm sure I don't smell good everyday ... I'm just saying, I like to.

Back in the day, when I was growing up and starting to care about all things feminine, the popular perfumes of choice were Charlie, Jontue, L'Airs du Temps, and Chloe. I liked all of them and went through a period of wearing each and every one of those.

A few years went by, I was in my twenties and there were TONS more choices. My favorites at that time were, Ralph Lauren's Tuxedo and Safari (Tuxedo was short lived, but man was that one awesome and Safari was in the most beautiful bottle), Anne Klein II (lots of compliments when I wore that one), and Oscar de la Renta ... one of my all time favorites.

I was a college student when Oscar de la Renta first came out and I was so in love with it, but I only ever had a little sample bottle because it was pricey and I was a poor college student. (A friend of mine asked if some sisters I knew came from a wealthy family and one of the reasons she thought they might was because they both wore Oscar - well that, and they shared a BMW out at school.) My sister, Leslie, was married at the time and had a bottle of it so I'd put it on whenever I went over to her apartment. It was a really happy day for me when she got pregnant and the smell of it suddenly made her feel ill so she gave it to me!

I wore that one for several years ... along with Lancome's Tresor, which really is so beautiful ... I also went through a couple bottles of Beautiful (speaking of) by Estee Lauder. But my very favorite, top of the list, all time best fragrance - for me - is the original Lacoste.

LoVe. I think I went through about 6 or 7 bottles before they discontinued it. WHAT? Why oh why do they do that???? That sort of became "my" smell. I wore it for so many years and through so many significant experiences that I almost felt a little ownership of it. I definitely got more compliments wearing that than anything else. So now, I can only get it sometimes at one of those perfume outlet shops, which kind of makes me think it isn't real or authentic and may or may not be the same scent actually, so I had to come up with a new favorite smell.

I better rephrase that, since I can only find my all time favorite perfume occasionally, I also discovered and am pretty crazy about Cashmere Mist by Donna Karan. And the last time I bought it there was one of those gifts with purchase so I got a sample of the deodorant too ... f.a.b.u.l.o.u.s. Seriously, what a treat - that's the word for it, a treat. It works great and enhances that perfume smell all the more. And Nordstrom just had it on sale for $12 instead of $18. (I know, $18 for a stick of deodorant? And I could only ever justify that because I am so low maintenance on so many other girlie things.)

Sidenote: I love it when a man smells good too. Not too strong of a scent, but just enough so you know he cares. (Kay, that sounds a little Hallmarky.) Isn't it amazing how smells in general can evoke very specific memories and people for you?

There was a weekend in college when a friend of mine had come down to BYU from Ricks in Idaho for the weekend. He had brought a friend with him and introduced us ... Jared P. He smelled SO good. And it was one of the most memorable weekends for me of my whole college career because of that boy - I fell so head over heals in love with him almost immediately it wasn't even funny. If he had said, marry me, I think I would have.

In fact, it was a few days after he had gone back to Idaho that my roomate said, "It is so nice to have you in love with someone, you are skipping, do you realize that? This is a completely different girl and I like her."

You know, I only ever saw Jared one other time after that and it was at an assembly a few months later ... I was still a student, but he was with a whole big group of other young men heading out on a 2 year mission - big sigh for me.

But the weekend stayed vivid because everytime I was in a store that carried Jontue Musk for Men I would pick up a bottle, open it up, take a big whiff .... awwwww .... Jared. (For years!)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Flowering trees.


One of the things I love about early Spring is when the trees bring forth blossoms. One of my favorites is the flowering pear tree. I have one in my front yard and one in my back yard and the city decided to line the top of my street with them too ... lucky me.

When my friend, Delanie, visited in April she asked what kind of trees they were because she thought they were so beautiful too. That's when I realized that they were particularly indigenous to Utah but not so much in California ... but then California has stunning bougainvillea vines that climb walls and arbors and trees and are SO gorgeous, (but they just don't grow here - I really do miss those.)

After the flowering pear trees have lost their blooms and turned to green for the rest of the season, out comes the blossoms of the (I'm guessing here 'cause I'm just not quite sure if this is what they are) flowering almond trees. I am madly in love with them and definitely need to get some planted in my own yard!

There are several in the landscape around my office complex and every single day I look and think those are the sweetest little trees I have ever seen. The blossoms start out as round, tight, dark pink balls ... then they open up and look like miniature roses ... and then their petals open up wide into a beautiful light pink. They're just so ... so ... delightful! :)


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Orange and blue ... together.


I got my copy of Oprah magazine over the weekend and LOOK how fabulous this cover is! I am crazy about the orange and blue together! And I also decided that one day I am going to have someone photoshop a picture of me too. So my hair and skin and lips and teeth look as perfect as hers do. I don't think I'll have them do my eyelashes quite so long though -really, Oprah? But otherwise ... this is such a great picture of her.

Not too long ago, in her "10 Year Anniversary" issue she put the previous covers inside the magazine (and I really do believe it was ALL the covers spanning that 10 year time frame) and made her comments about them. She pointed out which ones were her favorites and which ones were more along the lines of, "What was I thinking?"

But hey ... I suppose when you are getting a different magazine cover of yourself every single month (for the last 10 years), you are bound to have one or two that maybe is not so fabulous.

Now in doing my blog, I often have to go through my boxes of photos to find just the one I have in mind for a particular post and in doing so (besides it just being so fun and really sweet to see cute pictures of the family through the years), I do come across pictures that are some of my absolute, very favorite pictures I have ever taken. And it reminded me of a conversation I had with McCall recently. I asked her if she had a favorite photo of herself and she said she did and knew which one it was almost as soon as I asked her.

So I had an idea. Since this blog is a little intimate affair of sorts ... I thought it would be fun to ask you (yes, YOU, the one reading these words right now, YOU) to email me your very favorite picture of yourself and why you love it and I am going to post them. I really and truly would adore that. And I think you should - you really, really, really, should. Even if you think you don't want to - do it for me!!!! 'Cause that would be such a happy little thing for me and bring me a lot of joy!

(And if you read this you probably blog or email or "facebook" and know how to do that - do it, do it, do it! And if you hurry, we can all see each other like, around, maybe, oh, I don't know, shall we say next Friday? And you know if you don't you will say, Dang, I wish I had been a part of that!)

Kay, and that really wasn't going to be the gist of this post, it just managed to segway (and that isn't how you spell that word, but you know, I can't find it in the dictionary to spell it correctly since I don't know the correct spelling).

.... and I loved orange and blue when they used it here too:


POST EDIT: My sister sent me this photo after I did this post of an orange and blue wedding ... so cutie!


Friday, May 14, 2010

Hallmark, hoops & yo-yo.


When I was a young girl, I wanted to own a Hallmark store. (Now that I am a grown-up ... not really so much. I've realized the incredible amount of work that goes into anything retail.)

I can't remember the age that my mother started allowing us to walk into town - town being the one street that had the stores on it; the grocery store, the toy store, the beauty shop, the hardware store. I know saying it that way probably dates me a little bit ... but where I grew up, there really was only one street that had anything retail on it and that street was Huntington Drive.

Huntington had "The Faire Set" where my mother used to get her hair done by a guy named Buzzy. It had the corner drug store where we would stop for little asundries and hope that the mean lady, Ramona, wasn't working that day. It had the San Marino Toy Shop that, even as a kid, I knew was way overpriced. It had a few jewlery shops and some banks. There was "Tony's" pizza place by the high school where seniors would have lunch because they were allowed to leave campus during the day, and then there was the Hallmark store.

So whatever age that was, that my mother thought we were old enough to venture into town (usually with a friend), Hallmark is the place that I would choose to venture to. Now although Hallmark stores have LOTS of fun little items to see and collect (and that I wished I could have), I spent all kinds of my time there looking through stationary and the cards.

I would buy boxes of stationery and those little wax sticks you'd melt to seal your letter with. I bought invitations (you know, to have on hand because you never know when you might need to invite people to something), and I bought tons of cards too - for birthdays that were coming up or for special occasions. I would buy thank you notes, cards for showers, even cards for a boyfriend that I didn't even have yet! If I liked the message, I wanted to have that card .... just in case.

And even after all these years I am the "go to" girl when a friend or family member is in a hurry and needs a card for something ... and it really doesn't matter what the occasion is, because I'm pretty sure I'll have one: wedding, anniversary, new baby, miss you, thank you, birthday. I can also gift wrap. Oh yeah, that little Hallmark card obsession kind of grew into a full on stationary store for me. I have gift wrap suitable for a multitude of events, including tissue paper, boxes, gift bags, celephane bags and ribbon. (I do LoVe to wrap presents.)

And although now I do NOT have that kind of time on my hands to browse through the card racks, I do know of a couple of Hallmark characters that absolutely crack me up and I have become a little fan. Have you heard of hoops & yo-yo???? That's them on the card up above. You can check out any Hallmark store (and online) and they'll be there! On cards and on mugs, and on frames and trains and automobiles - kay maybe not those last two things, but they are these two adorable characters who talk really high and say really cute and funny things to each other.

My kids know that I love them so my Tennessee girls sent me this card for Mother's Day. It's a musical card and when you open it up hoops & yo-yo sing this (to the tune of Amazing Grace and a little out of tune):

Amazing Mom, you're wonderful - we think the world of youuuuuuuu. And though at times we do some bad things -we know you love us too!

(And then they ramble amongst themselves about making a cake and going out for ice cream.)

I laughed out loud, especially after reading my own daughter's/my personal hoops & yo-yo's comments.

There really is a card for all occasions ... and the best ones are at Hallmark, at least I think so.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Babies with babies.


My niece Lindsay had her third baby boy this week, an 8 lb. 9 oz. bundle named ...... actually, that is still undecided (maybe Liam, and I do love the name Liam). And I also know that I have already posted about this before, over here, but I will say it again, I absolutely adore newborn babies. Look at this face! And that peachy skin, and his little rosebud lips!!!! So precious.

I was so excited to see Libby's reaction to a baby smaller than she was ... hmmm, she didn't have much of one. When he started fussing a little bit it did get her attention focused in his direction though. I had McCall set her on Lindsay's bed so I could take their picture together. I said, "Give him a kiss Libby."

"Mom. She doesn't even know how to do that yet."

Oh, silly me, I guess she is only 8 months old herself ... nevermind then. She just seemed a lot bigger next to a freshly delivered one.

Congratulations Lindsay ... he is so beautiful!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Little girls.


As I was driving home from work tonight I noticed three little girls climbing over a white vinyl fence to get out to the sidewalk. When all three were over, they started to skip ... little girls like to skip, and how can you not be happy when you see that?

It made me remember my own girls and their days of playing house ... with their dolls ... and coloring ... and watching Barney and the CareBears. I miss their little voices as they talked to each other and sang, and asked questions about anything and everything. They were so sweet.

I miss combing their hair after they got out of the tub ... and tying bows in their hair. I miss white lace socks and tying their shoes. It made me feel nostalgic, and a tiny bit sad ...

But I do have Libby ... and I did keep lots and lots of dolls ... and bows ... and dress up clothes!

I love little girls!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

5 little eggs.


I bought myself something for Mother's Day ... isn't it the sweetest? I LoVe it.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Being a mother.


Last month our church held it's semi-annual General Conference. One of the speakers was Elder Bradley D. Foster and I was really touched by his message ... largely about mothering. He said, "By divine design, nurturing seems to be part of the spiritual heritage given to women. I've seen it in my daughters, and now I see it in my granddaughters - even before they could walk, they wanted to carry and care for their little baby dolls."

He went on to talk about his profession as a farmer and a rancher retelling how each spring they take a herd of cows and their new calves up along the Idaho Snake River to graze for about a month or so. Then they round them up and bring them down a road that leads to a corral. From there they are loaded into trucks that carry them to their summer pastures in Montana.

One particular spring, Elder Foster's job was to ride at the back of the herd and to gather any calves that wandered from the road. Because it was so hot the little calves kept running off into the trees to find shade.

He said after several hours of trying to gather up strays, and with sweat running down his face, he yelled out at the calves in frustration, "Just follow your mothers! They know where they're going!" The mother cows knew that even though the road was hot and dusty now, the end would be better than the beginning.

When the gate to the corral was shut Elder Foster noticed that three cows were pacing nervously at the gate. They could not find their calves and seemed to sense that they were back on the road somewhere.

He and some other cowboys went back about 1/4 mile down the road and sure enough, there were the calves resting in the shade. But the men's approach startled them and the calves resisted their efforts to round them up. The more they tried to push them toward the corral, the more stubborn the calves became. Finally Elder Foster told the cowboys, "Let's ride back and let the mothers out of the corral. The cows will come and get their calves, and the calves will follow their mothers."

He was right. The mother cows knew exactly where to go and led their calves right back to the corral.

The point of his story was to illustrate not only the innate nurturing mothers feel for their children but that we have a responsibility to our children as well. We need to teach them and guide them, but as importantly, love them ... and when they lose their way, as they often do, continue to love them, unconditionally so they feel that they can always come home.

It was a message shared simply, but it was also very powerful for me. I know that my children are here as a gift from God and I value my roll as a mother. I feel blessed to be their mother and grateful that I adore each of them! Today was a good Mother's Day for me! (And my first as a grandmother ... so fun!)


(Libby just started scrunching up her nose ... I got a HUGE kick out of it!!!)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

#10 - Jumping.


(Elliott is doing the hand stand ... Sophie is to the left.)

Think about a little toddler learning how to jump ... "Mommy, watch what I can do!" Think of a little boy jumping in a puddle to see how high he can get the splash! Now think of the last time you jumped on a trampoline - I bet you laughed.

I absolutely LoVe watching my children from my kitchen window as they jump with each other on the trampoline ... they smile and giggle the whole time they're doing it. Smiling is contagious, and I do like to smile.

Jumping, for those who do, is a very happy little thing.

#9 - Pink ... the artist.


I think I liked Pink the first time I ever heard her sing. And the first song I remember her singing was "Get This Party Started" ... I'm comin' up so you better get this party started, I'm comin' up, I'm comin'. It's such a fun song - contagious rythym, and I was newly divorced when it was released ... it was sort of anthem at the time for me.

I liked her raspy voice, I thought she was adorable, and the girl can dance. She is definitely a rebel though, and as a personal disclaimer: I really don't condone some of her lyrics or her "racy-ness" but she has amazing vocal ability and is a talented song writer. (I think some of her songs were written just for me, like "who knew." )

But what I also admire about her is that she knew who she was at a young age and has stayed true to herself. She knew what she wanted and she got it - her way, and people in the industry respect her for that, so do I.

And way deep down inside ... I'm a little bit Pink. (But shhhhh, don't tell.)

Friday, May 7, 2010

Thursday, May 6, 2010

#7 - Foam soap.


What a great idea ... current favorite - japanese cherry blossom - smells clean, fresh ... LOVE.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

#6 - Good ice.


Yes, there really is a difference amongst ice. And who has the best ice in town depends upon who you're asking.

I used to be an ice chewer. Not just chewing the ice after my drink was gone, but filling a cup with ice just so I could chew it. (Ha ha ha ... that reminds of a time when I was sitting with a date and we were going to watch a movie. He looked at me and said, "Oh, that is going to need to stop during this movie.")

I know people say it's bad for your teeth, and others will say that it hurts their teeth, but I LOVED it. So I got in the habit of always requesting my drinks with extra ice. I got to know who goes ridiculously overboard when you request that (Einstein Bagels, Wendy's) so that you got about 2 sips of soda with your ice (stopped asking for extra there). And I came to know that even when you request extra ice at McDonald's they only put a tiny little scoop more in and it's not really like getting extra ice at all.

I also know that at certain gas stations different ice is in different vending machines. So I fill my cup up with ice at the one that has the better ice and then go to the machine next to it for my diet coke. And believe it or not, when I have mentioned to the person next to me as I am waiting that the one machine has better ice, often times they will agree. (I did say this was my list of 10 random things ... so maybe ice might be the most random thing to talk about.)

If you're from around here or know what Sonic is, that seems to be most everyone's favorite ice. They have the tiny little soft ice "pellets." And did you know that you can go to Sonic and buy bags of their ice for around $3.00? Great for punch bowls at parties. But their's is not my personal favorite.

My very favorite ice is when the cubes are clear and hard but are hollow on the inside. Yes?!?! Because they are crunchy but not so hard that you can't chew through it ... like at Wendy's - I don't like their ice at all.

I went to a party a couple of years ago and the hostess had my ideal ice in a bowl. I said, "Oh my gosh, this is the best ice ever! Where did you get it?"

"I know! I love this ice too! I found the perfect ice machine and I bought it!"

What? The perfect ice on demand? That's what I want for Mother's Day!

Monday, May 3, 2010

#5 - A gratitude journal.


Oprah did a show years ago and suggested that everyone keep a gratitude journal. This is my gratitude journal. It's small, only about 4" by 6", but is the perfect size to sit on my nightstand as a reminder to jot down things that I am grateful for.

Oprah had suggested that you write down 5 things that you were grateful for that day, and by doing so, we would focus on that which was good in our lives instead of what wasn't. (Pretty much why I started this blog too.) She mentioned that everyone could think of 5 things in a day, no matter how silly or small they might seem.

The first entry in this journal is dated April 19, 1997. Four entries later, the journal disappeared. It boggled my mind. Where in the world could that have gone?

I searched high and low for it and it was no where to be found. And isn't that SO frustrating? When there is no logical explanation as to where something might have gone, that no one else would have (or should have) touched? So if you are the only one who would have moved it, and you know you didn't - how could it be gone????

Well ... one day, quite some time later, I was in my storage room and saw that I had a laundry basket full of random odds and ends and things that had never found a home, other than being put in that laundry basket waiting for their ultimate resting place (like I have already mentioned here), and lo and behold at the VERY bottom (seriously) of that basket of randomness was my gratitude journal! I was SO happy that it had resurfaced!!!! How, when, why, I couldn't tell you ... but that night, I made another entry in the journal and it was dated November 25, 2006. (Don't ever give up on finding something in the black abyss of your home - until you move and it still hasn't shown up.)

That many years later, it was really sweet to read what I had been grateful for when my babies were, well, still little.

April 19, 1997 - I am grateful ...

... for all the food and water I can eat, when so many are without.

... that Elliott and Sophie played outside most of the day.

... for a cuddly little Sophie.

... to finally have bought new light fixtures for the bedrooms - WHAT a difference!

... that Elliott tells me he loves me many times a day!!!