Sunday, September 28, 2008

No regrets.

A few years ago, short years ago, I had a lot of kids.
Well, I still have a lot of kids...but back those few, short years they were much needier.

I had four kids under three at one time.
I remember bits and pieces of those days...enough to make me twitchy.



Anyway. I survived.
Part of what made me survive, was the light at the end of the tunnel.
That light!
The light that one day...all my kids would be in school, and I would be free!
Free to be whatever I wanted to be, do whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it.
Ahhh the light...

So this year was THE! YEAR!
I put Mikayla (my baby) in school.
They have all been going to school now for a couple of months.
They don't need me like they did.
And guess what, folks?

I have more time now and yet I have gotten nothing done.
Not in a good vacation-y way.
Nothing as in I can't seem to get my crap together.

Everyday I feel like I am barely keeping my head above water.

I forget appointments.
The laundry is never done.
Dinner comes from boxes and cans most of the time.

I seriously can't get a rhythm or routine down.

I am worse now, with the kids in school, than I was with all of them home, it seems.

Here I was, waiting and longing for another stage of life, and it turned out to be, well, nothing.
It is like trying to hold smoke in your hands.

I don't have many regrets from the life I left behind.
I genuinely enjoyed having all my little kids at home with me.
And with no mommy medication, I might proudly add. (thank you Mountain Dew)

But I wonder, if this is how life is?
How you look forward to the grass that appears greener on the other side of the fence, and when you finally make it there, is it always different from what you thought it would be?

I will be so happy when I graduate!
And I started a full-time job, and missed the carefree life of a student.
I will be so happy when we get married!
Okay, that was good.
I will be happy when I lose weight...
Guess what? I feel like the same person.
You get the idea.

Struggling with trying to keep my crap together, Sam and I had a long talk.
He thought it would be a good idea for me to cut things out of my life that seem important, but really aren't.

So, I am trying to find a balance.

I am trying to enjoy the present more.
I have been cutting out obligations with my scrapbook "work."
Spending more Friday nights with the kids, instead of working in my studio.
I have been trying to simplify.

I just don't want to have regrets when I cross into the next lap of this race.

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Poor, sad blog.
I haven't been here for a week!

If you were one of my houseplants, you too would be dying.
You are on my list of things to do.

I am sorry, poor little blog.
Hang in there.

Monday, September 22, 2008

observation by Mikayla

"Mom, do you think Dad is friends with the devil cause he likes to wear so much black clothes?"

Sunday, September 21, 2008

some scrappy crap

Here is what I have been up to:

Thanks Ponica for the inspiration for this card! (Be seeing you this week at the gym for sure.)

Having fun playing with some new shapes.
I am also proud to report that my laundry is under control.
I have even made homemade dinners almost every night this past week.
Gold star for me!

Except I have been horrible at the whole eating healthy thing.
Why, oh why can't I have the genetic make-up to crave Broccoli?
I like junk.

Just tonight I ate about 12 oreos. I don't even like them.
Then I topped that off with an ice cream sundae. Extra caramel.
I have had candy corn, milk duds, peppermint patties, whoppers...
Don't judge me.

I am getting on the treadmill tomorrow.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Jayden 1, Mom 1.

May I present to you, the faux-hawk.

I can never win.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Jayden 0, Mom 1.


Jayden has been growing his hair out. He is in seventh grade this year, and we allowed him the artistic freedom to choose for himself his hairstyle. Let me just say that the texture of his hair is thin and fine. Not working out so well for the moppy floppy styles they have now.

He just looked a little greasy.

I was so happy when we drove past a Dollar Cuts and I said to him "Hey look! Haircuts for nine bucks, and it is right next to that new yogurt place! Who wants a haircut and ice cream?"

He agreed.
So let me tell you what...I screeched my mini-van to a halt in the middle of main street rush hour, flipped a U-turn, and hauled A into the shopping complex before he could change his mind. It sent my diet Mountain Dew flying...I didn't even care.


He looks so clean.
And a little older.
Maybe taller.
Definitely better looking.
I am a happy momma!

The only sad thing is that they have already taken this years school pictures for Junior High. He will be sporting that greasy shag in the yearbook for all time.

Kinda reminds me of this guy, in my Junior High yearbook:

Sam Wadley, Lehi Junior High, Seventh Grade 1984

The apple just doesn't fall far from the tree, does it?

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Trying to redeem myself.

This past month or so, I have been getting boxes of fabulous scrapbooking stuff.
I just love UPS!
One of my boxes was the entire line of Bo Bunny's All Stuck Up flowers, brads, and buttons.
They came in packaging that looked like this:

I hung the magnetic Stuck Up containers in my studio, and turned the packaging into this:

Here are some more packages I re-purposed tonight with some scraps I had laying around the studio. These are also from Bo Bunny. I loved the heart shape:


Hopefully that will make you like me again.
Turning trash into treasure...yes?
Since some of you are thoroughly disgusted at my admitted dishwasher abuse.

What is Mikayla up to these days?
She is obsessed with the Disney Princesses.

We let her pick a gaudy pink spangly plastic backpack for Kindergarten.
She chose a Disney Princess one.
I quizzed her to "name the Princesses."
She gave them names alright.
She did not know they already had names!
She just thought they were pretty ladies!

I know.

In fairness, her older sister was just not that interested in girly things.
I really did try, but she was more into the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles like her brothers.

So I gave up.
And with Mikayla, I guess I never thought about pulling them back out.
Princess failure.

We are making up for that.
Currently she is really into this one:
(Check out her static-hair)

"Snow White and the Seven DORKS."

She'll get there.

Friday, September 12, 2008

A modern (not-so) convenience.

Our last dishwasher never really died as much as it got retired.

It started its life out with enthusiasm!
Like most appliances do.
It washed bottles with caked on baby formula, and cookie cutters encrusted with play-doh.
Never complaining, just doing its job.

As time went on, it was less and less of a high performance machine.
Pretty soon, the dishes did not get clean.
The dishwasher was tired, I suppose.
The dishwasher would pulverize the food particles into a fine food mist, and re-distribute them all over the dishes.
Then, it would bake that concoction onto the dishes at a high temperature.
The dishes almost always had to be scraped off, and then re-run.

Of course, here is where the argument comes in:

Sam thinks that dishes practically need to be hand-washed before they are loaded into the dishwasher.

I think you should be able to just load 'em up.
What good is an appliance that can't do its advertised service?
Not a you-hand-wash-and-I-will-finish-up-ER.

We replaced the dishwasher with a pretty Kitchenaid one. It cost more, but supposedly you can put a whole cake in it, and it will miraculously wash the cake, platter, and surrounding dishes. Have you seen the commercial?

So, it has been running like a champ.
The first load we went through was exciting.
We both sort-of waited around to see the dishes come out.
I pretended to do work on the computer, and he puttered around the house.
Every twenty minutes or so, we would pass in the kitchen, inventing things to get, so we could see that first batch.
Neither one of us wanted to admit the embarrassing stupidness of wanting to see dishes post-cleanse.
The dishwasher finally indicated that it was in the "cool down" mode.
Both of us were there.
Our plates! How they shimmered!
Our silverware! Spotless!
And our drinking glasses were actually squeaky! For real. They squeaked!

Time has moved on.
The dishwasher is still doing okay.
Occasionally it leaves a stray Spaghetti-O baked onto a bowl.
Or a barely recognizable mushroom.
Sometimes a paper-thin fan of dried spinach embellishing a drinking glass.

And here is where the other argument ensues:

I feel like the dishes are sanitized and clean.
I will flick off that rogue Spaghetti-O and put the dish in the cupboard.
Sam, on the other hand, will put it back in the dishwasher to be re-run.

Makes you want to eat at my house, eh?
Only if Sam has been on dish duty.

Hey, no one has gotten sick. Yet.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

"Ate" tips for eating<--see what I did there?

A few of you have asked about my weight loss tips or motivation or whatever.
I am going to list a few things that worked for me.

Your weight loss journey is going to be different from mine, so what strikes a chord with me, might not do anything for you.

For instance, at Weight Watchers they had this ridiculous quote on the wall.
"Nothing tastes as good as thin looks."
Well, I don't know about you, but I can think of plenty of things that taste as good as thin looks. That quote was stupid to me, but obviously someone liked it.

So take my advice for what it is worth.

1-First of all, I have no willpower. I know I have mentioned that before, but an open bag of Doritos WILL get snacked on until is is crumbs, and then I will drink the crumbs from the bag. This goes for cookies too. So the 100 calorie packs have been great for me. When I eat the whole dang bag, I know it is only 100 calories. And if I do get a bag of Doritos, I make sure the kids eat them all. It is dangerous for me to have those kinds of treats in the house.

2-This sort-of goes along with number one. I don't buy or make things that I like. I will buy Chips Ahoy for a treat, cause they aren't even tempting to me. Or I will buy Bubble Gum ice cream or make cake mix cupcakes. None of those are worth eating to me. The kids are happy, and I am not tempted.

3-I found good snacks that I do like. I really like Craisins. They are low-fat, and they are sweet and chewy. I also like these crackers:

Kelloggs All Bran Crackers
You can have 18 of these crackers for two points. They are tasty and filling I like them with this soup:

Progresso Zero Point Soup.
I think there are four or five varieties of the 0 point soup. If you eat 1/2 a can it is really 0 points. I like this for in between meals when I am hungry.
I like fruits and vegetables if they are easy to eat. I won't generally peel an orange and eat it, but if I buy them all ready, like those fruit cups from Costco, I will eat them. I am embarrassed to be so lazy.

4-During Thanksgiving, in one of my WW meetings, we talked about avoiding pigging out for Thanksgiving dinner. The leader said something that totally stuck with me. She said food and treats are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We do not need to feel like we "have" to eat that pumpkin pie just cause it is the "season." We can have anything, anytime we want to. I think that helped me get over the mindset of "not being able to have any, cause it will all be gone, I MUST EAT IT NOW."
I can make pumpkin pie in June if I want it. I don't have to eat it just cause it's there.

5-You all know I hate exercise. But I found a tape I like. I know I have mentioned it before, but here it is again:

I like it because it is non-impact, requires no coordination, and uses only a couple of hand weights. It is a butt-kicker. Sam does it with me and is impressed with her "super sets" she does lifting weights. I think he is also impressed with her "super set" of chesticles too, since that was the first five pounds I lost.
I like to put her on wide screen. Makes me feel better about my thighs.

I also run. We have a treadmill, and I use that. I usually watch Everybody Loves Raymond. Or Good Things Utah. It distracts me from the fact that I am sweaty and want to quit.

I exercise in the evenings.
Mornings don't work for me.
When I have worked out in the mornings, I feel like all the energy I was allotted for the whole day just got burned off. Then I drag butt all day.
I hate to get up early anyway, and to pair that with exercise was a sure failure for me.
I have way more energy at night.
I exercise after the kids are in bed, and then get in the tub and read trashy magazines. And since my bishop reads this, by trashy I mean "People" but sometimes I also read "The Ensign."
It's a nice wind-down for me.

6-I try to drink a lot of water. I buy those Crystal Light mix-ins like they are going out of style. One quote I did like from WW was this: "If hunger is not the problem, food is not the answer." I eat sometimes when I am bored, or when my mouth is lonely. That is when I try to drink a mix-in, and see if that does the trick. Most of the time it does. My mouth just needs something to do. Or gum. I like gum. You have to learn when you are truly hungry, and need food, not just something to eat.

7-Buy a pair of pants that is tight, or doesn't even fit yet. Then gauge how those feel. When I wear my tighter pants, I don't want to eat as much, cause I already feel like a lard-a$$. That worked awesome for the holidays especially. I wore some mighty tight pants to every Christmas party we had.

8-Portion control. Dish up what the reccommended portion size is, and eat that.(It is usually 1 c. for casseroles and stuff) Then take a break, drink some water, and see if you are truly still hungry. is always available, so you don't have to eat like a concentration camp resident at dinner.

There you are. A few tips.
And I need to hurry and post cause we have a pretty cool lightening storm here, and I don't want this to go down.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Non-weight loss.

This is a super fabulous post for me to be bringing you after my big ol' weight loss reveal.

Thanks for the kind words, by the way. E-mail me anytime if you want any tips or a good motivational butt-kicking. I have heard from a few of you! Here's to shedding pudge!

Speaking of pudge...these bars are just too delicious to not share. And easy. You know me, I like the easy. They are not too WW friendly though, sorry.
I think you could get away with one.
The size of a penny.

Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Bars

2 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/2 c. sugar
2 1/2 t. vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 (20 oz.) pkgs. prepared chocolate chip cookie dough, frozen for 1/2 hour before use.
Powdered sugar...Optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and eggs until smooth. Press one pkg. of cookie dough onto the bottom of a greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Pour the filling over the dough.

Slice the other dough pkg. into 1/4 inch rounds. Flatten the slices between you hands (spraying hands with pam makes this easy). Place on top of the filling, covering as much as you can (you don't have to cover the entire surface).

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until golden brown.

Let cool completely; sprinkle with powdered sugar. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting.

And your "tool" for this Tuesday?
I discovered via my uncle Dave...(Hi Dave!)
A free online radio station.
They play some pretty good music, but the best you can create your own "Station." You add fifteen of your favorite artists into a play list, and they play from just those artists. All the albums, B-sides, and live versions, good stuff, and you can skip songs, or take them completely out of the play list if you really hate it that bad.

I have created one station today, and I have a few in mind to add.

Lot's of good 80's tracks I haven't heard since I wore Acid Wash.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

One Year Ago today....

...I joined Weight Watchers.

Jayden had come into the house really upset one day. I guess he was arguing with one of his friends and that friend said to him "Your Mom is fat." He about beat that kid to a pulp over it. Bless his heart.

I never wanted my kids to have to stick up for me that way. I was embarrassed to be overweight. That kid was right, and it made me a weird mix of angry/hurt/and determined to change.

That and my fat pants were tight. Again.

I had a friend that had done WW and wanted to sign on again. That gave me the encouragement I needed.

So I went.

I was in denial still, thinking I didn't really need to be there. I thought the meetings were weird. I felt out of place, and then I really listened to the people at the meetings. They had the same struggles I did.

It was intimidating to sign on to the program. It was a lifestyle change. I don't like change much. And my Mountain Dew and Peanut M&M's didn't fit into the plan.

My first weigh in was a huge eye-opener. We didn't even own a scale at home, so when I saw that I was weighing in at nearly what I weighed when I delivered the twins, I was even more committed to the program.

Then I found out that the first weigh in determines how many "points" you get, and that each week you need to try to lose weight enough to be under your last weigh in weight. I turned to my friend and said, "Dang! If I would have known that, I would have put rocks in my pockets today, to make sure I was under the weight goal and I would get more points." Pretty crafty, I am.

And she very wisely said "If you are going INTO this looking for ways to cheat, it will never work for you."

That really stuck with me.

I was determined to be successful.
I followed the program faithfully.

I remember starving some nights, and being out of points.
I remember being very choosy during the holidays, and reluctantly passing on some of my favorite foods.
I remember making cakes and cookies that I would never eat.
And fitting exercise into our vacations.
Once I wanted to make out with Sam because he had just eaten a candy bar and I wanted to just taste chocolate...
Good times.
I remember my pants needing a belt, and then eventually given away because they drown me.
I remember running without my knees killing me.
I remember hitting my weight loss goals, and being proud of myself.
And going shopping, and fitting into sizes that surprised me.
Calling Sam after weigh-in excited about my loss totals.

I hit goal weight, and then lifetime last February.

I have dropped a few more pounds since then, bringing my grand total to forty pounds lost.

My five year old weighs 40 pounds.

Granted, I hold weight pretty well.
My ancestors were a handcart pushin' sturdy bunch. Thank goodness for good genes!
When I gain, it isn't manifested in a bubble butt, or thunderous thighs.
We gain allll over, like a polar bear.

I did find some pretty great before photos though. Bad angles and all that.
Are you ready??
(Can't believe I am going public with these puppies...)
Behold BEFORE:

I know!

I am not blogging this to get a whole bunch of "You look so great" comments.

I am blogging this because if I can do this, so can you!
If there are any of you reading this that are ready for a change, seriously, DO IT!
You can e-mail me!

I still hate exercise.
But I found things I can tolerate.
I still eat junk.
Just not as much.

You can't put a price tag on self-esteem.
Or the sense of accomplishment that comes from feeling like you are in control of at least one aspect of your life.
On for once NOT trying to ditch your old high school crush before he sees you at the mall.
Okay, so I still do that.
Only because I married my high school crush, and most likely he would have all the kids with him, and well...that's ditchable.

In closing, I would like to bear my testimony of the power of Weight Watchers...

Saturday, September 06, 2008

I see you.

I have had one of those weeks where I have had really good intentions of getting things done, and then actually accomplishing nothing.

I don't get it,

Well, actually, I guess I do.

I have been spending insane amounts of time on Facebook.

I swore I wouldn't be that person!
And then, I found a couple of people I haven't seen since High School, and added them as friends, and checked out their profiles, and what they have been up to...and on and on it went, until my butt fell asleep from sitting in front of the computer for many hours.

The house needs cleaning.
We have had pizza delivered twice this week.
The laundry is washed, just not folded or put away.
I have eight scrapbook assignments waiting for me.

It has all piled up.
Dad-gum it Facebook! ((shakes fist at other open computer Window Tab))

So I guess what I am trying to say is: If you are on Facebook, find me and add me to your friends so I can catch up with you.

Friday, September 05, 2008

The Birthday Trip.

So sorry for not blogging.
I have been having health problems.
By "health problems" I mean, I have lost the desire to eat anything healthy.
Ever since the vacation.
I ate so much garbage on vacay.
And my body said "hey...I remember this crap...this crap is good crap!"
And now all my body wants is Ding Dongs and Sugar Babies.

Don't fear. Ponica is getting me back on board the health wagon.

I gained three pounds, but I believe a lot of it was from Vacation Bowel Anxiety.

We started off the vacation early. An early flight to Los Angeles. It went off without a hitch. Me and the kids got first class, Sam and Mikayla were in the cattle car. The plane was so small, and the flight so short, that the only perk for first class was to pompously sneer at the lower class passengers behind you, and also the stewardess gave us THE WHOLE CAN! of soda, without us asking.

And I think you could take two treats if you wanted.

We checked into our hotel, and headed straight to the beach.
We went to Zuma beach.
It was fabulous.

We spent the whole day there.
Just relaxing.

I got to just sit there and read a book, for my birthday.

PS Notice my white-ness. Niiiiice.
I even fell asleep at one point.
Then we went back to the hotel on the PCH, and saw lots of really ritzy houses.

I am not a fancy person.
My idea of a good place to eat is Chick-Fil-A.
My favorite outfit is jeans and a really old tee shirt.
I don't need a fancy hotel.
I don't really mind if there is an occasional cockroach, or mold in the bathroom.

As long as the hotel has a do it yourself waffle maker, I will always, always rate it four stars.
Five stars if they give me shampoo AND conditioner, not the shampoo/conditioner mix.
Anyway...the waffles...
First you fill the cup with the batter.

The egg-y delicious batter.
Then, you pour it into the waffle maker.

Then you flip the waffle maker over, and the timer counts down. In 2:50 you have yourself a hot waffle.

I have learned to NOT spray the maker with the Pam, then your waffle will be extra crispy.
Sometimes you have to dig it out with the fork.

Then, the delicious waffle is ready for butter and syrup, and your mouth.
Five stars.

So we started the day off right. With breakfast.
And off to Universal Studios!

It was my birthday. Again.
In fact, I milked it the whole trip.
It was my birthday every stinking day of the trip. HA!
I made up for a lot of disappointing birthday years.
I made the children fetch me things.
And give me foot rubs...

Who's your Mummy, Jayden?
(Yuk, yuk)
We rode rides:

And saw shows:

At one point Sam was interviewed on the red carpet:

And then I got bit by Edward the token hot vampire.

That was awesome.
Even awesome-er was the fact that the kids were so pooped they fell asleep as soon as we got back to the hotel.

The next day, after waffles, we went back to Universal Studios.
We did our favorite rides again.
Mikayla couldn't meet the height requirements for some of the favorites so I offered to watch her in Curious George's Ball-pit Hell, while Sam took the rest of the kids on those rides.
I was there for over an hour.

It was the longest hour in history.
The noise.
The kids.
Getting ponged in the head with random foam balls.
More noise!

The smell of feet.
Sticky everything...
Nowhere to sit.
I truly thought about slicing my wrists and bleeding out in the corner.
Sam came back.
Then the kids went to the Curious George water play area, and Sam and I snuck away and left them there.

We pretended we didn't have any kids.

We went through the House of Horrors, and even held hands.
Then we bought some six dollar ice cream bars and ate them all, and threw away the evidence.
We went back to Curious George.
The kids were still there.
We all left after that, and went back to the hotel pool.
They had a luke-warm hot-tub.
It was perfect for Mikayla, our non-swimmer.
Then to bed we went.

All that pollution makes for some purty sunsets...
The next morning, (still my birthday) we drove into Beverly Hills to embarrass ourselves on Rodeo Drive.

No. We did not go into any shops.
We were truly rednecks here.
May I remind you that we are on the last day of vacation.
We were all dressed in the cleanest clothes we could find in our suitcases.
The kids had thrown their wet swimsuits on top of their other clothes.
They were wrinkly and smelled like stale socks something bad.
I did go into Tiffany's.
I wanted to show Shianne the little blue boxes.

The sales lady was genuinely nice even though she knew we were idiots.
Especially when I asked her to show us "that bracelet that locks on your arm, and the person who gave it to you keeps the key "and she informed me that the particular bracelet was from Cartier.
We skedaddled out of there.
With our straw hats.
The Beverly Hillbillies theme song playing in the background...
Here we all are in the reflection of the store front at Dolce and Gabbana:

On to "Ollywood!"

We drove around the block three times to try to get a picture of the famous letters, and this was the best I could do. Through the windshield too.
Dang, I am good with the drive-by shots.

Another drive-by shot of the Walk of Fame.
All the famous stars in the sidewalks:

None of us wanted to get out and walk around.
We were tired and hungry.
Sam merged onto the wrong freeway, and drove us in the opposite direction for about a half hour. That was a good time.
So we had to get the rental car back, and our flight was looming.
And then it ended...our LA extravaganza.
Thus ended my four day birthday.

And we are back to our normal character-free/ waffle-free life.