Sunday, August 31, 2008

Reflections on motherhood

It's a momentous day when you attend your new ward for the first time. The ward where we will be for the next 4 years - which is a really big deal for us. I have been anticipating it all week: planning what to wear, what the kids would wear, etc. Unfortunately, I realized today that I am judgy of new wards. When I go in, I go fully expecting to judge and be judged. Everything from the people, to the way the bulletin looks, to the speakers...all these things add up to give me an idea of what to expect from the ward. How fast we can expect to get a calling, whether or not I will love Enrichment nights, if my closest friends will be found there...all these things are going through my mind when I walk into a new ward. This is our 5th ward together - how crazy is that!
Anyway, so this morning I was a little stressed preparing for church, in anticipation of everything. After I had finished getting myself ready, I took Leighton out of his carseat and laid him on the floor to change his diaper and get him dressed. That's when I realized that my hand, my shirt, and my son were covered in yellow poo. I freaked out. I didn't really have another outfit ready to go (our clothing options are terribly limited until the movers come), and I was just mad. Leighton has never pooped all over before - why this morning, of all mornings? I started yelling up to Andrew in an angry tone of voice to run down and help me because I just "got crapped on." Just then, I looked down and saw Eva staring up at me with a look on her face that I'll never forget. She was confused and a little scared from my angry yelling, and the emotion in her eyes was strong enough to slap me in the face. I instantly felt overwhelming shame for acting that way - especially in front of Eva. I guess I have just always thought that she didn't really understand what was going on - I told myself that I would start acting like a better example when I felt she could pick up on it. Well, this morning it hit me like a truck - I'm there. She understood that I was mad, but she didn't know why. All morning, I felt so horrible. I couldn't really apologize to her adequately, so I just vowed to myself to do better at controlling my anger and watching my tone of voice from now on.
After that episode, I found myself in the congregation, checking out all the other wives there. Looking for kids the same age as mine, a cute haircut, a friendly smile...anything to tell me that I would find my new best friend. Alas, my unrighteous judging got me nowhere. First impressions are always deceiving anyway, this I know. But it seems like a good ward and I'm really looking forward to getting involved. Pretty sure I'll get the standard music calling, but that's okay. I'm still holding out that someday, somehow, I'll move into a ward where all the music callings are filled and I'll be asked to teach Relief Society once a month. My dream calling. Someday.
I met the Primary president in the hallway, and she told me I was welcome to take Eva to nursery to get her adjusted to it before she turns 18 months in a couple weeks and gets to go on her own. (My, how time flies!!) So, I went. And it was one of the most profound experiences I have had in a long time.
I took her in right as singing time was starting, so I plopped her on the floor and sang "Old McDonald" in her ear. I gradually backed away and stood farther so she could get more involved. She was surprisingly shy and stand-offish; she just sat there staring at all the other kids. Then it was snack time. I sat her on a bench by the other kids and went to the corner to observe where I wouldn't be noticed. They said a prayer on the snack, and I was overwhelmed with pride when I saw her fold her arms and bow her head for a whole 4 seconds or so. Who knew she was paying attention when I asked her to do that so many times before? I laughed when she kept trying to hand her cracker and cup to the little girls next to her and they pushed her hand away. For some reason, Eva never sets things down; she always hands them to me. Obviously I need to work on that with her. I thought it was better than her throwing stuff on the floor, which it is, but I don't want her to always do that.
As I sat watching her eat her graham crackers and raisins and drink out of a little paper cup like a big girl, I came pretty close to crying. I can't even put into words all the emotions I felt: pride, disbelief at how grown-up she was, excitement...everything. I just can't believe that she is just like other kids and can sit at the table eating a snack. Sounds stupid, but I just was so...overcome by her...normalness. My little girl, sitting there just like one of the class.
Following snack time, she threw her bent, chewed-up cup in the trash can and wandered around staring at everyone as playtime started. She had a somber, intense look on her face until she saw some kids running circles around her. She smiled at them, and for some reason it made me sad to see how excited she got by that. (I told you, I was an emotional wreck in there...there's no reason that should have made me sad!) Her favorite was bubbles. She shrieked with delight and giggled as she swatted at the bubbles. The only drawback to that was the over-sized little punk with the snotty nose that kept punching and kicking the bubbles and almost knocking Eva over in the process. Oh, boys. But she didn't seem to mind, even though I wanted to reach out and smack him and say, "Just leave her alone and let her enjoy the bubbles!"
She didn't acknowledge me for a while, but finally came and brought me a few dolls to show me. We ended up leaving a few minutes early because some girl kept taking Eva's coloring page and Eva was having a cow about it. (Oh, tantrums...) But overall, it was a great experience. I have been mulling over in my head all day the thoughts I had while watching her in Nursery. What has she learned from me, and what have I taught her about life and how to treat people? How has her personality been shaped by watching me? Will she be the kid in nursery who shares the toys? Throws screaming fits? Sits quietly by herself? Participates eagerly? Have I taught her anything good yet, or have I just been waiting until she is "old enough"? How can I teach her all the things I want her to learn, when I'm still throwing screaming fits myself?
Just one day experimenting in Nursery taught me a lot. I left there with a resolve to be a better mother and teacher and example to Eva. And as I sat watching her expand her world, I felt mine shrink just a little tighter around her.

Friday, August 29, 2008

We're in.

We are now officially "in" our house. We got the keys this afternoon, along with a nice gift basket Quadrant Homes (including a mop bin thing, bath towels, a nice tool box, and our house key in a black velvet box). We immediately painted the kitchen a cheery, bright, avocado green, and I LOVE it. We'll be doing all three bedrooms tomorrow, hopefully. Eva's is purple, Leighton's is red, and ours is a greenish-blue. I just love color, and I'm so excited to finally be able to express myself through decorating my house! Now if I can just have patience until Tuesday when the movers come...
Our good friends the Willises came over for pizza and ice cream sandwiches tonight, and it was so fun to see them here in WA. We sat on blankets in the living room and had a great time catching up. Have I mentioned how much I love it here? Someday soon, I'll give you a tour of my house. Stay tuned.
P.S. Boob update: I haven't pumped in about 36 hours, and I feel decent. However, I have a humungous crack on the right side that feels like death itself. I think my nipple could possibly fall off. Anyone have any advice on how to get rid of big cracks? I have been using Lansinoh cream, to no avail, and today finally got some Neosporin cream. Could it possibly have gotten infected from the cabbage? What a mess I'm in. They say nursing is the easy option. My milking machine, head of lettuce, Neosporin cream, and I beg to differ. Thank heavens for Motrin, though - it seriously saved my life today. I thought I was going to die every time I moved my right arm. Feeling much better now. Long live pain relievers.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Have you ever walked around with cabbage leaves in your bra?

I have. For the past 24 hours, I have been wearing cabbage leaves. Not for a fashion statement or anything; I'm simply trying to dry up my milk. When you ask people how they managed to dry up their breastmilk, they always say, "Take it slow." Well, for someone as impatient as me, that is a VERY difficult answer to live with. The main reasoning for that answer is that if you rush it, you will be in pain. But the truth of the matter is, I have been in almost constant pain for the last 7 weeks and one day since Leighton was born. Lactating obviously wasn't as easy for me as it is for some others. And since I only nursed for a handful of times and was more of a pump-and-bottle-feed type person, I'm not exactly weaning my baby anyway. I'm weaning that blasted purple machine. So "taking it slow" was the last thing I wanted to do.

When my friend Autumn suggested putting cabbage leaves in my bra, I thought, "Strange...but I'm in." So the next day, I found myself in the bathroom with the produce bag and a head of cabbage, carefully ripping the leaves down to my cup size, washing off the dirt, and sticking them on. Can't say I have ever done anything weirder in my life.

Of course, Andrew has loved it. He has made jokes all day about wanting a tossed salad and things like that. And I haven't really seen a huge difference in milk production - or lack thereof - just yet. But I'm going to keep it up. Because even if it doesn't work, it's kind of cool. When else in my life can I wear vegetables on my boobs?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


We are in Washington! We are absolutely in love with this place - the weather, the trees, but mostly, our house. We did the walk-through today to look for little things to fix before they hand over the keys on Friday - things like nail pops and drywall dents and stuff. It took almost 3 1/2 hours (my brother Jeff sat outside in the car with the kids the whole time, bless his soul!) but it was fun. I have to say that I have never felt a feeling quite like the feeling home-ownership inspires in me. Not to be cheesy or lame or anything, but I am SO proud of this place, and I don't even live in it yet. It's something I have never experienced before - loving this building because it's mine. It's OUR home, and we own it. It just makes me fill up with warmth and happiness when I think about living there and making our life in between those walls.
As we walked through the kitchen and were being shown how to work the stove and oven (which, by the way, was awesome), I had to fight back the tears. Excitement was literally overwhelming me. Then tonight we went to the mall and purchased a fridge, washer, and dryer. On the way home, I was once again almost brought to tears by a feeling of gratitude for how blessed I am. I have a beautiful family and a beautiful house, an incredible husband, and our whole lives ahead of us. I don't feel that I have earned all these things I have been given so abundantly, but I am certainly going to try harder to deserve them. I am so very blessed.

Monday, August 25, 2008

12 hours to go

Still traveling. Currently in Rexburg, ID at my sister Lindsay's house. Leaving in 2 hours for Missoula, MT. Have about a million pictures to post - stay tuned for a serious overload. Can't WAIT to get home to Washington. Only been there once, but already it feels like home. Wish me luck - 12 hours of driving to go.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Vacation details from a Tuesday

This afternoon for lunch we went to a little Italian pizzeria to celebrate Brittani's 32nd birthday. It was fun being with family again - although, restaurants were MUCH more fun without children, I won't lie. Thankfully, Eva feasted on my pizza crusts - probably the most she has eaten in days. She is so picky when we travel. Oh, and she also loved the marinara sauce they gave us. After spilling some all down the front of her, I poured most of it on a plate but gave her the cup to hold. It entertained her for the remainder of the meal, and I was so grateful.

Back at home I played some more with Chelsey's Cricut machine (how in the world do I not have one of those yet? They are the coolest!) and waited for Eva to wake up from a nap. I pushed her on the swing for a LONG time today - she loves to swing. She doesn't act especially excited when she's on there: she seems to concentrate really hard on the feeling of the wind, or something. She has a serious but happy look on her face, and I love to watch her. I sang her Popcorn Popping and other Primary songs while she swang, and she loved it. I was reminded how much I love Primary songs; I don't know why I haven't taught her them yet. She is getting old enough to learn them, and it's going to be so fun to sing them with her from now on.

Oh, we also went to Target earlier this morning to get me a sports bra and an ace bandage. I am going to start the already painful process of drying up my milk. (Any suggestions from those who have done it??) Leighton will be 6 weeks old tomorrow, and frankly I can't believe I have held on this long with pumping. I HATE it. I hate being attached to it when I don't produce enough milk as it is and have had to supplement with formula from the beginning. It is certainly no mystery how he has gained so much weight. He eats at least four ounces per feeding, sometimes 6 or more. PIG. Today it seemed he was eating most of the day, since he's a slow eater anyway and he eats so much. Can't wait till this stage is over, for that reason. But anyway, the pumping stage of my life is officially over, and I'm praying that the getting-rid-of-milk stage doesn't take too long or cause me too much pain.

Tonight we had a yummy dinner with a delicious homemade lemon meringue pie for dessert. I had three pieces. I have never had a homemade meringue pie - especially one this good. I am definitely going to have to get that recipe and try my hand at forming those fluffy white peaks.
I talked to my sister Kim for a little bit and I'm still so grateful that she's okay. Last night when I called her for the first time, she answered the phone and said, "Steph!" I said, "Kim!" It was a flood of relief to hear her voice, even though I knew she was okay. This made me realize how much I love her, and I think I take my siblings for granted.

Another thing that happened today is I found out that Stephanie Neilson, a darling girl in Arizona whose blog I read and who is also married to a pilot, was in a plane crash with her husband and is severely injured. It was ironic that I found that out today, because I had been thinking about her all morning as we flew. I don't know why - I have never met her or even left a comment on her blog - but it really affected me when I heard the news. She has impressed me from the first time I read her blog: she is such a loving wife and awesome mother to 4 little kids, and I have often thought how I wanted to be more like her. Even though I don't know her, I was so sad and it has been hanging over my head all afternoon. I will certainly pray for her and her husband to be able to pull through this.


Just a few minutes ago, I went downstairs to grab something. Eva was sleeping (or so I thought) in the game room, and I planned to sneak past her. As I walked down the stairs, I saw her little pajama-clad figure standing in her Pack'n'Play. "Mama! Mama!" she cried excitedly. Well, seeing as how she has just barely started saying my name this week, (is that normal for an almost 17-month old?? She says tons of other words, but only just now Mama made the list...) my hearted melted and I couldn't help but go over to her. I kissed her and talked to her for a minute. She told me she wanted to go outside and play (swinging outside on the swingset is her obsession right now), and I promised her we would swing tomorrow.

I don't ever want to forget the sound of her little voice saying that most precious of names - Mama. I am so happy to have that title, and nothing in the world makes me happier than to hear her say it.

My husband is a pilot.

Not to brag or anything, but I think having a pilot for a husband is pretty awesome. And a couple weeks ago, while still living in Hell-tus (that's my new name for Altus, and I just thought of it - isn't it witty?), I said to Andrew, "I can't believe you have never flown me in a plane." That comment started a chain of events that led to today: the day I got to fly in a little plane with my pilot husband.

Unfortunately, due to the fact that we don't own a plane, he was not able to fly me himself. But we got the next best thing - a family plane that his dad shares ownership in, flown by his cousin Jason. I don't feel gipped that he didn't fly, because it was still completely AWESOME to go up in a little plane like that. I had been warned that a small, private plane is a bumpier ride than a big, commercial one. I was a little worried, because I always get nauseous while descending, on every flight since I was little. I'm not really a big flying-lover, in all honesty. But today - today that changed. Today I came to understand why Andrew loves flying so much, and why it has been his lifelong dream to become a pilot. So here's the story of my first time in a private plane.

I married into a "car family." By that, I mean cars are a big deal to Webbs. Andrew's dad owns a car dealership, to start with, and they get to drive alot of awesome cars without buying them. Such is the case with car. Now, I'm not a car person, but I couldn't help but smile when I walked out of the garage and found this black beauty waiting for me in the driveway. Driving in style? You'd better believe it.

We got to the local municipal airport to meet Jason at about 7am. I didn't know quite what to expect from the plane - all I knew is that it was pretty small. He opens the hangar and this is what I saw:

Small is an accurate description. I think the Corvette was roomier than the plane. But who cares - it's a plane! He pulled it out with a rope. No high-tech stuff here. It was a pretty old plane (I think 1960s) and smelled just like my Grandpa's old camper. I sat in the back seat and Andrew sat in the jump seat to act as co-pilot. I brought both the video camera and the DSLR so as not to miss a single moment of the experience. I took about a million pictures through the dirty little window back there, and I never knew how beautiful New Mexico was. It's a ton better from the top than it is driving through, I'll tell you what.

We flew over Navajo Lake and saw what I call the floating trailer park - a ton of houseboats that are made of cheap metal and are just an eyesore. But the lake is awesome.

The best part was circling around Shiprock. I have driven past that impressive rock formation many times, but never is it more amazing than from up high in the air. It has eroded at the top and forms what looks like a paper-thin ridge, and it has way more little tower things than I had ever realized. What a cool moment that was.

It was an incredibly smooth ride. The skies were totally clear and blue, and the visibility was clear as far as my eyes could see. I didn't get sick on the landing, amazingly enough. We flew for probably about an hour or so, and I loved every minute of it.

I told Andrew that I want to buy a plane. People who think boats are cool obviously haven't flown in a private jet. Planes are now my recreational vehicle of choice. Now, if only I could find a couple hundred thousand dollars...

We sped home in the Corvette - Andrew wanted to show me how powerful it was, but all I could think when he revved the engine was what a waste of gas it was! But he was pretty thrilled to drive it.

It was an experience I'll never forget, flying in that plane. It brought to my mind Andrew's favorite poem, called "High Flight" by John Gillespie Magee Jr.

High Flight

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence.
Hov'ring thereI've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long delirious, burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew -
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untresspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.

Monday, August 18, 2008


Last night my sister Kim and brother Jeff were caught in a flash flood while camping in Havasupai. Miraculously, they survived with no injuries. Jeff climbed a tree to get away from the rushing waters from the broken dam and hung on for dear life for 5 hours until being rescued. Here is a video of Jeff being interviewed by KSL. I am so grateful they are safe! I haven't talked to either of them yet and I'm looking forward to hearing the whole story. It really is a miracle.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

I would hate to be an Olympic track star

beacuse you think you look so good and hot in your little spandex shorts. You get to the track and do some cool-looking stretches, and get into position. You glance down at your slim, muscular legs and think, "I can't wait till the world sees me go." The gun goes off and you run your heart out and win the race.

Then...they do the playback in slow motion. And while watching it, you realize your face is bouncing all over like it's trying to jump right off your head. In fact, though you don't look fat while standing still, on camera while running you see that you have plenty of extra skin on your face. And you wish that the whole world hadn't just seen your cheeks jiggling, because it looks horrible. Even though you have your victory to console you, you will never feel the same about running fast again after seeing yourself in slow motion.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Good bye Altus

Our last day in Altus. This has probably been my hardest day of parenting in my life. Andrew has his final checkride all day and I was left with the task of packing up all our belongings, as well as taking care of both children. It seems one of them CONSTANTLY is crying, and needs to be fed, changed, or held. And I have a horrible terrible clogged milk duct that causes me excruciating pain and forces me to spend more time pumping and trying to unclog it than I care to think about. The other half of the day has been spent washing and folding laundry.

Eva is currently hanging on my arm throwing a fit, and Leighton is fussing from his crib...again. Whoever said newborns sleep alot LIED. They don't know my son. I had to do one last post from Altus before packing up the computer.

So...goodbye, Altus. I have talked trash about you since I got here, and I can't say that I was wrong. You're a fine place - I had a child here - but don't plan on me coming back to visit anytime soon. Or ever, for that matter. I could not be happier to be leaving.

Next stop: Farmington, New Mexico, Webb household

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Have you been introduced to the wonder that is pre-shelled sunflower seeds? I hadn't ever seen these, until 2 weeks ago when I was trying my darndest to eat healthier, and, while wandering in the produce section, saw these small pieces of heaven. You see, I have a thing with sunflower seeds. I love them. My whole life, we have eaten them on roadtrips, mostly. But I eat them in an unusual, and possibly dangerous, way - I eat them whole, with the shells on. I just can't be bothered to get that small little seed out of the shell, and plus I really like the saltiness on the outside. So despite warnings from my mom that I was going to choke to death on a piece of shell, I shoveled handfuls of whole sunflower seeds into my mouth and chomped them down. Luckily, I am still here to tell you the story - I have yet to choke on a shell.

BUT. Now that I have fallen in love with the preshelled kind (by the way, I really hope these are done by machine and there's not a bunch of poor people in China shelling them by hand - that would make me feel horrible), there might be no going back to the original ones.

However, I am not the only member of this household who has fallen in love with this bag of crunchy, salty deliciousness; Eva has also found a new favorite snack. She picks them up one by one with her little fingers. When she wants some "seeds," as I have taken to calling them, she says, "Sssss! Sssss!" She can't figure out the whole word yet, so I have learned that when she hisses at me from across the room, she is asking for a plate of seeds. They have fallen all over the floor and I find them everywhere, but I don't mind. I'm glad that Eva and I can share a love for seeds. Or ssss.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My son, the fatty.

Today I took Leighton to the doctor for thrush. Which, sure enough, he has. I didn't think it was possible to get that unless a baby was breastfed (which he isn't anymore - he's bottle fed with breastmilk and formula), but apparently it is. So we needed some medicine before we move on Friday. But anyway, the incredible thing about the visit was when I placed him on the scale and saw the numbers that flashed up.

Exactly 3 weeks ago (he's 5 weeks old today), we were at the doctor for his 2-week checkup. At that time, he weighed 7 lbs. 9 oz. - he had gained 5 oz. since birth. In the past 3 weeks, he has seriously porked up. Today he weighs 10 pounds 7 ounces. That is almost 3 pounds in 3 weeks! He doesn't look much bigger than when he was born, but he is definitely heavier. It hit me that he really is growing so fast. I always think to myself that I wish he could just hurry up and be 6 months - that is the best age in all of childhood, in my experience. But a small part of me will miss his tiny little body. Today I realized that I need to slow down and appreciate his newbornness, because it's fading fast. I sure love my little porker.

(His one month picture, taken last Saturday, with his giraffe D. Todd - named for the apostle. We had to continue the tradition since we have Eva's Henry frog for Henry B. Eyring and Ballard the duck.)

Beautiful accident

No, not Eva - the picture. Yesterday afternoon we were playing on the porch and I was taking some pictures of the kids. Eva loves the lens cap that hangs from the camera and was trying to put it back on. She reached for the camera the same time I tried to take a picture of her, and this is what I got.

It is possibly my favorite picture of the month, maybe even the entire year. Isn't she beautiful?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


I heard yesterday while watching the Olympics that Michael Phelps swims 5 hours everyday. And do you know how many calories he has to consume daily to refuel his body? 10,000. Yep, 10,000 whopping calories.

I seriously need to get a lifetsyle that burns enough to where I could eat 10,000 calories everyday. Oreos? No problem. An Almond Joy every hour on the hour? Child's play. A full gallon of Blue Bell MooLenium Crunch ice cream after a dinner of Mexican food? Bring it on.

So my bone to pick with nature is this: why doesn't being a mom burn that many calories? It's much harder than swimming (albeit a completely different kind of hard), and you have to do it much longer than 5 hours a day. Granted, I was never an Olympic swimmer. But I've been a high school swimmer, and I've been a mom. And I probably don't need to tell you that although the latter is much more rewarding, it's not even a comparison in the amount of effort it takes.

So to you, Michael Phelps, I say you just go on eating your way to Olympic fame. I'll still be here, eating my way to...the complete opposite of Olympic fame. Possibly fame at the grocery store for how much ice cream I buy. Not to refuel my insanely fit body, but just because I am craving it and lack the willpower to tell myself no. Life just isn't fair.

See family. Funny, funny family.

My family is funny.

Andrew took these first two pictures while we were in the process of posing for a normal picture. It was just a few minutes before they left to go back home to Houston after spending the weekend with us in Oklahoma and attending Leighton's blessing. I told Tim and Laura, my tall, ultra-skinny siblings, to stand partly in front of me to make my waist look smaller. So Laura stands directly in front of me and I peeked over her shoulder, and we all started laughing really hard.
Laughing pictures are my favorite, because it's one of the things that happens the most when we get together. Of course, there is always drama and arguing - probably more in my family than most normal families in the world - but there is always, always laughing. And I love that.

From the left: Mom, who secretly loves Tim's racist jokes, is addicted to Sonic's "Diet Coke with a lemon easy on the ice" and laughs so hard that she cries at least once a day; Sarah, who looks strange when she dives off the diving board, loves tween things like Hannah Montana, and can quote movies like nobody's business; Tim, whose nickname is Holly because he looks like he just got out of a concentration camp (long story), has the sweetest heart in the entire world, and occasionally pronounces words wrong in Buzz Word (the official family game) and causes great uproar; me, who makes more sarcastic jokes than is necessary just to get a laugh, has a nickname of BP (stands for bottomless pit) and can out-eat anyone in the family, and invented old family traditions like George Washington hair in the pool; Laura, who has a crush on Michael Phelps but has a smoker boyfriend, eats faster than anyone so she doesn't have to feel full, and loves doing strange photo shoots like America's Next Top Model pictures in the backyard; Dad, who does a flawless Elvis impersonation, used to wake us up in the morning by singing the BYU fight song and banging on our backs like a drum, and loves his grandkids more than life itself.
Other funny siblings missing from these pictures: Kim: newly-returned Romanian RM, girlfriend of BYU football player Landon, basement dweller, and Oreo-eater extraordinaire; Lindsay: mother of Tyler and gestating another (hopefully a girl!), homemade bread-maker, BYU-Idaho almost-graduate, and nauseous but beautiful cowgirl; Camille: BYU hopper, girlfriend of Tyler good-looking Juergens, painter of rooms, and eater of many otter-pops and ketchup with rice; and Jeffrey: confident-not-cocky golfer, breaker of girls' hearts, Facebook king, and our favorite Boy with a capital D for Drama, because he grew up with so many sisters.
Like I said, my family is funny.
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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sleeping like a log

On Thursday evening, I was trying to wake Leighton up to feed him. No matter what I did - rubbing his feet with an ice cube for a second or two, taking his clothes off, changing his diaper, singing...he was out like a light and refusing to wake up. So we decided to put him in the tub.
He stayed asleep. Splashing water on his cheeks and stomach, scrubbing his head with a didn't faze him a bit.
Finally, after we got him out of the tub, he opened his eyes and woke up a little.
But he seemed pretty annoyed at us over the whole thing. Don't worry, he got over it as soon as the milk hit his mouth.

Leighton's Blessing Day

He's not crying - he's yawning. Bored with pictures already at one month old? Oh buddy, you haven't even seen the beginning of that camera in your cute little face.
He looks surprised at the kisses from Daddy. I don't know why - it's definitely NOT a rarity around here.

Friday, August 8, 2008

My love/hate relationship with my life, explained. Partially.

You know what I hate?

When people say something on their blog like, "I found the coolest thing on this website." And that's all they say - no explanation of what it is or why they think it is cool. So curiosity gets the best of you and you think that if they think it's cool, it's worth a look...and you take the time to click the link and it takes you to a website for Clorox bleach, or something equally UNcool. (By the way, that link above really is the the Clorox website, just by way of explanation.) I probably hate this just because I have nothing better to do than click on random stupid links. And even if I had better things to do, I lack the self-control to walk away from those links without knowing what is hiding behind them. Pathetic, I know.

The fact that every single time I nurse Leighton, I am absolutely positive he is going to rip my nipples right off. (Sorry for the indelicate use of the word "nipple" again, but in this context it simply cannot be avoided.) What kind of reconstructive surgery would that require? I hope I never find out, but at this rate I just might. Breastfeeding, in this household, always entails much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. Well, he doesn't have teeth yet. But he still gnashes his gums quite effectively.

Seeing myself naked. Pregnancy may be beautiful, but I guarantee you that nobody is going to look at this postpartum sagginess and have any word closely resembling beautiful come to mind. Probably something more along the lines of "repulsive."

The feeling of being hungry. I'm so glad I don't live in Africa, because I HATE being hungry. I know that's childish and immature, but I get so bugged when my stomach is empty. A full Stephanie is a happy Stephanie.

Having no friends. I wish with all my heart we were back in Enid with the people I love. The last of our set of 2 friends left last week, leaving me all alone with nobody to talk to. Making me want to get out of here even worse. Melanie, if you are reading this, I miss you! And all you people I love in Enid, I miss you too!

Seeing a picture of myself on a day when I felt totally hot and realizing that I didn't look half as cute as I felt. To illustrate my point: This was taken last Saturday right before Eva left for Houston with my parents. I had on a new shirt and had done my hair all cute and even gone so far as to put on makeup. (Sadly, that signals a special occasion now. It used to be an everyday occurrence...oh motherhood, what have you done to me?) I thought I looked pretty good. Let's take a family picture in the name of preserving memories but really so I could remember how cute I looked? Insert said picture.

I definitely do NOT look like I am wearing makeup, and my hair wasn't as cute as it felt. Must have been the extreme heat and humidity in that downtown Dallas parking lot. And do I really have that fat of a face in real life, or did the camera add 10 pounds to each cheek? Sigh. I need Glamour Shots or something. Aside from that, it is a cute picture. Just look at my cute little family!

Getting hair in my mouth. But we have been over that. (See previous post.)

Being paranoid. Last night I was absolutely certain that my family would get in a car accident on the way up here and I would never see Eva again. So I lay awake worrying and praying and crying, all for nothing. I've been a worry wart my whole life, but being a mom just takes that to a whole new dimension.

But guess what I love?

The Olympics starts today! I am an Olympic freak and cry during every opening ceremony as far back as I can remember. I told Andrew last night that the Olympics just makes me feel so proud to be human. It's like I feel a bond with all of humanity, you know? Summer is the best - I love the swimming and gymnastics most of all. In my next life, I will be a gymnast. And I will have the cute little bum that comes with being one.

A pan of brownies by my side and not an ounce of self control. Yum. This pan will soon be empty.

Good hair days. I'm having one today. But I'm not going to take a picture and get all disappointed. I'll just keep on feeling obliviously cute.

I get my Eva girl back tonight!! My parents and a few siblings are coming in town for Leighton's blessing on Sunday, and they are bringing her home. And we'll live happily ever least, as soon as we leave Altus.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The two grossest things I have ever eaten

Once upon a time, I went to Washington with my dear husband to go house hunting.**
(I know, that picture is awesome.)
I arrived there before he did (he drove from Spokane, and I flew from Houston). While I waited in our little hotel room for him to arrive, I watched television. There was a show called something along the lines of "I Can Make You Thin," if I remember right. It was this British guy that claimed he had this ground-breaking method for weight loss. I thought, "Hmm. Well, I might as well give this guy a shot--nothing to lose but weight and time." So I watched him. And basically, in a nut shell, he was a psycho. The show ended up being an inside joke between Andrew and me (he got there in time to watch part of it with me)--particularly one part. This guy - we'll call him Dr. Skinny, for our purposes - had this bizarre way of fighting cravings. Dr. Skinny said that whenever you felt a craving coming on, you should think of the sickest thing you could imagine eating and tap your forehead and your wrist and a couple other places on your body, and that would make the craving go away. (Like I said, psycho.) Anyway. The point of this is that at that time, I was really trying to think of the sickest, most disgusting thing I had ever tasted. And here's what it was:

I was staying at my parents house for Christmas last year, and we were all gathering around the table to play a game. I saw a gummy bear on the counter on my way to the table, so I picked it up and put it in my mouth. Harmless, right? Nope. This was no ordinary gummy bear. This gummy bear was covered, inside and out, with HAIR. Possibly dog hair. How I didn't see this when I picked it up, I have no idea. Eww, I am gagging as I even write this. The instant I felt the furry goo on my tongue, I started heaving and ran to the sink to spit it out. I was clawing at my tongue for a good five minutes, spitting and crying and cursing inwardly. How so much hair got on it is still a mystery - nobody in my family would own up to picking it up off the floor and setting it on the counter or anything. To this day, the memory of that wretched gummy bear in my mouth makes my stomach churn.

So that's what I thought of when I watched that show in Washington. But today, I had the second grossest eating experience of my life. I was sitting at the computer reading people's blog and snacking on a bag of Craisins. Now let me preface this by saying that Eva has a hobby of dumping out her bags of snacks - Craisins, yogurt-covered raisins, name it, she has dumped it out on the floor. Often, rather than throwing it away and wasting money, I just carefully pick them up and put them back in the package. So. I grabbed a handful of Craisins and put a couple in my mouth. No sooner should I begin chewing than I feel a HAIR on my lips. Oh my gosh, I am gagging again with the thought. I warily reached up my hand to pull it out and looked at the long, curly, black hair in my fingers. It had obviously been picked up off the floor and put in the bag during one of Eva's episodes of dumping out Craisins. Which is absolutely disgusting.

So the moral of the story is...I'm not quite sure. I guess, following the strange advice of Dr. Skinny, think of my two revolting food incidents. Who knows - maybe it will work and make you lose your appetite. Writing about it has certainly made me lose mine. The end.

**Our hunt was successful. Here is what our house looks like on this very day. All done and ready for me to get there. Isn't it amazing? Feel free to comment on what great choices we made on cabinet colors and such, because we are pretty proud. You are welcome to come visit us and see it in person whenever you want.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Keeping up

Keeping up with two blogs is alot harder than keeping up with one, I'll tell you that much. I feel more pressure to keep up with the other one, so this one has been a little neglected. We are currently out of town (hallelujah!) staying with Andrew's sister Chanel in Dallas. We came here on Friday night after discovering that Andrew didn't have to work again until Thursday. And there was no way in you-know-where that I was going to sit in Altus that long when we had a chance to escape. So here we are. We came for a few reasons - last visit with them before we move, find a blessing outfit for Leighton, get new clothes for me, and give Eva to my parents (they drove up here from Houston to pick her up and will bring her back on Friday when they come up for the blessing). So it has been a good trip.

My mission in shopping is to find myself a dress for Sunday when we bless Leighton, but so far I have failed miserably. Today is attempt #3. I did get a DARLING cropped jean jacket from Ann Taylor Loft and a cute black blouse from Target, but that's it. Sad, isn't it? Andrew said he clothes-shops with me so much that he feels like my gay friend. :) He also thinks that I have been watching too much "What Not to Wear" because I'm so much pickier about how clothes fit me. But whatever.

So sorry about the lack of posts on here. I'm still alive, and blogging everyday here, and when we get back home to our insanely boring lives in Altus, I'll be more than able to keep up with both blogs. Oh, and our house is done! YAY!!! It's ready and waiting for us to move in. Oh house, how I love you. You'll never know how your existence makes my living in Altus all the more unbearable. But soon, very soon, we can be together. And I can paint your walls and decorate your rooms to my heart's content. Till then, dear house.

Friday, August 1, 2008

I think my heart just melted.

Eva has been playing with her babydoll while I held Leighton. She was feeding her baby the little bottle I gave her. But here's the part that makes me want to cry, it's so cute. I looked over at her just now and she is intently trying to strap her baby doll into Leighton's carseat. Gosh, I love that girl.

More about Mommy Spice

I am actually on a 2-week trial period over at Mommy Spice. The more comments my blog there gets, the more likely I am to actually get hired on as a permanent writer there. So if you head over to the site to check it out, please leave a quick comment to let me know what you think about what I wrote. Thanks to any and all of you who help me out with this! :)

PS - Scroll down and look at my haircut and van!