Sunday, March 24, 2013

Thought to kick off the week...

 We are in post church nap zone right now but sometimes I sacrifice the nap because I love to just have everything quiet and still instead of feeling like I am on a motherhood ant hill in constant motion. I feel so excited for this week.  My mom, sister, and grandma are all going to be in my house this week. Don't even try to imagine how thrilled I am about this upcoming event. I read this quote a few days ago and loved it:
"Do whatever you have to do this week with your whole heart and soul." 
  -Marjorie Pay Hinckley

 I think that's a good theme.  The photo below demonstrates how we should embrace the week with our heart and soul (and our double chin)...
 Grace is learning to be very patient with Liv's love.
 For some reason Liv thinks I do not bathe Grace enough because she is constantly licking her like a mother cat.  I will continue to try to help her get over this odd habit.
 Grace is not crying tears of happiness. This is usually the end result of Liv loving her. It's a very intense love that sometimes involves belly flops and full body squeezing. We are working on the soft and gentle concept.
Everything I have to do this week will involve these two girls. They are my world. Welcome new week. Fresh. Ready. New. I love this week already. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Ode to Kim Cherry...

 I have someone in my life that all people need to meet.  Her name is Kim Cherry. She is one of those people that from the beginning I was friends with in my brain for a long time before we starting actually talking.  At first I was intimidated because she dresses like she works as a fashion model but really she works putting her 3 year old in time out and magnifying her homemakerhood like me.  Let's play a guessing game so you can start to see why I appreciate this woman in my life:
 Last week Gar asked me to make cinnamon rolls for his presentation he had to give at work.  Every time I have ever attempted any sort of bread product it turns out like hard frisbee.  I didn't stress this time, I just called Kim Cherry who spent the entire day helping her baking handicapped friend make a million cinnamon rolls.
 Then there was that one time I was in labor (I try to think about that as little as possible, it does not make me feel warm thrilled feelings) and Gar was at work. Who did I call? Duh. Kim Cherry.
Who brought me my favorite dessert in the hospital? If you guessed Kim Cherry you are correct.
A few weeks ago she called just to say that she had made hot fresh homemade french bread and wondered if I wanted some...

 And let us not forget that Kim Cherry is married to a professional chef who is extremely funny and showed up last week wearing a shirt that said, "I'm naked under this shirt", and brought us the most divine Asian Salad.  Game nights with them make your stomach hurt.
 Then there was this morning when we had a little hang out with our friend Jillian Michaels while she attempted to shred us...

Ashton didn't have weights so he improvised with a fake corn and boggle game spinner.  It was a good time indeed followed by green smoothies.
 Some people just come into your life and you know you are supposed to know them.  I don't know if we ate lunch a few times together in premortality or what but I am always so grateful to re-meet those people that make your life so much better. Kim Cherry is definitely one of those people.

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival."  -C.S. Lewis

Monday, March 18, 2013

I'm thinking about exercising. Just thinking.

I don't know this guy but I like him simply because of his shirt. I have been thinking a lot about fitness because I am extremely unfit. By unfit I mean that I feel like bones with gobs of bread dough glued on my body and it is not attractive.  This is a problem. Not because I need to fit into my summer bikini (I don't have one nor have I ever been blessed with a bikini conducive body) but because I'm sick of feeling flubby.  Does anyone remember gak? That describes the skin that oozes over my pants.  Imagine this but in flesh color (actually spare yourself and don't imagine that):
Now that I think about it, that could be cool to make ( gak recipe here if you're in the mood:

So I'm getting sick of it. Almost sick enough to do something about it.  I can't decide if I want Jillian Michaels to scream at me every morning or if I want to join all the fit sports bra models that jog around outside all day.  Mostly I don't know how to get motivated enough to commit to something.  I think those energy bars that all the serious exerciser peeps eat taste like mud (peanut butter chocolate it says on the outside...worse false advertising ever).  Let's be completely honest, I don't even own a water bottle. Maybe I will have some fitness inspiration tonight watching the grand finale of Biggest Loser. Maybe not.
 What would probably help is dining at Liv's kitchen which is open basically the entire day. It's her new obsession. Stop by anytime. Her specialty is imaginary macaroni and cheese.  She even blows on it for you before she gives you a spoon. Imaginary food may just be part of my answer...
Symbolically I don't want to look like either of these animals, just the one in the middle.  I love her. Now unlike energy bars, that is not false advertising on her shirt. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Liv's reminder....

This photo was taken April 2010 P.C.  Perhaps you don't know what P.C. time is, it's like BC but PC stands for pre children. This was back in the time when I had a tanning pass, had only one person to get ready (myself) and couldn't knead my stomach like bread dough.  I feel like this photo was taken about 70 years ago because so much of life has happened since then. I feel like I am on a totally differing planet. It's like I'm on mothering avatar except for I'm not blue, I don't ride on a flying hissing iguana and I am much more concerned about the environment of my messy house than Alpha Centauri.  
No excuses.  I realize that children are no excuse to stop brushing your teeth, wearing a bra, and looking like you're camping on a daily basis.  However, I will admit that sometimes the first time I get out of sweat pants (or on classier days, yoga pants) is 15 minutes before Gar walks through the door and that's only to prove that I haven't become one of "those moms".  You know, the ones that come to drop off the lunch money still wearing slippers forcing their child to hang their head in shame that they have a mother who belongs to the,  "let themselves go"  club. 
  I may have had a reminder of this today when I was holding Liv and we were eating cuties  (which are by far one of the most delectable foods digested by mankind) on the couch together and doing a fish puzzle with 5 pieces (let's be honest, toddler puzzles should take less than .02 seconds to complete) and she patted my hair and said, "Mama brush." 
I asked her to repeat in case I had heard incorrectly. I hadn't. I didn't know she was aware of my hair brushing.  This face shows her obvious disappointment. My brother Ben sent me a BYU devotional talk by Elder Tad Callister about refinement.  It said:

"Women ought to be praised for all the gifts they possess that so unselfishly add to the richness of our lives, including their attentiveness to their personal appearance. We must not “let ourselves go” and become so casual—even sloppy—in our appearance that we distance ourselves from the beauty heaven has given us. Every man has the right to be married to a woman who makes herself as beautiful as she can be and who looks in the mirror to tidy herself up before he comes home. Every woman has a right to be married to a man who keeps himself clean, physically as well as morally, and takes pride in his appearance. A husband should hurry home because of the angel who awaits him, and that angel should be watching the clock awaiting his arrival."
Let's just say that the free shirt I'm modeling, yoga pants and makeup-less face have a long way to go to reach angel status.  I'm pretty much hoping that quote can apply to my PCR years (post child raising) because for now, I'm feeling good when my teeth are brushed.  Perhaps Liv's reminder today was helpful that I could do a little more....

Friday, March 15, 2013

Liv's wisdom...

6 Weeks ago we just had Liv. One little simple child. We could have moved to China and been law abiding citizen. No van. No nursing. We had a routine down. No problem. I thought to myself, "Man I am finally rocking this motherhood thing, I could graduate magna cum laude with the ways things are going. I'm actually a little bored so maybe I'll take up some sort of craft or actually do a couple things that I've pinned on pinterest." 
Enter: Child 2
Goodbye routine. Hello van and nursing bra. I am back to feeling like I need a motherhood tutor. Things like having a clean house and complicated dinners (and by complicated I mean anything that requires more than 3 ingredients or 10 minutes) are as extinct as the brontosaurus. I'm sure things will get easier and we will eventually have a routine again but as for now its more about survival.  It just feels like there is so much to do and no time or system to do it.  There is a sacred hour each day where once in awhile the nap stars align and both girls are sleeping.  Other than that holy hour of precious time, I just feel like I am triaging what needs to happen the most.  
 A few days ago Grace was crying and I was staring at our living room that look like a garage sale vomitted on itself with everything everywhere besides the places it should be and I look at Liv and said,
 "Liv what should we do? What does Grace need right now?"  
Without hesitation she looked at me and said, "Chicken Nuggets."
So, trusting Liv's wisdom I made (and by made I mean I took them out of the frozen costco bag and put them in the microwave for 45 seconds) us some chicken nuggets (I don't imagine chicken nugget flavored milk being all that desirable) which Liv loved and then we went outside and did bubbles and just played.  The house was not cleaner when we went back inside, Grace did not sleep the the night and frankly nothing was improved other than the fact that I felt like it was all ok.  Sometimes what you think you need to do is not at all what is really needed. Sometimes you just need chicken nuggets. 

It's a small world...seriously.

So in my former life before I hung out with mini G (aka Liv) and the car seat hater (aka Grace) and spent every morning at 9:00 enjoying Elmo's world, I had another job teaching seminary that I loved. Honestly it was one of the highlights of my whole life.  Although I can't name every single student I taught, I know how I felt about them and the way that I still feel and care about them.  Being a teenager can be way hard. It's like being a caterpillar that is partially pupated with half its body still in an awkward adulthood cocoon waiting for maturity to kick in. You're not a child anymore but your way too obsessed with yourself and too immature to be an adult.  You have raging hormones, have to wear braces and try to date and decide who you want to be, all the while being stuck in a cage called high school with hundreds of other hormone raging, deodorant wearing, partially pupated creatures all going through the same process.  Its a marvelous work and a wonder that anyone survives that awkward season of life.
Being around teenagers for 4 years full time made me appreciate and love some of the greatest souls I have met. The thing I hated the most about that job was the fact that after a semester of caring about them, praying my guts out for them, teaching and trying to help them, they would walk out the door and I wouldn't see them again.  So I was quite delighted to learn that one of my students that was a quiet sweet sophomore in my fourth period named Rhett was serving his mission in Denver.  We had him and his companion for dinner and it blew my mind to see that quiet kind sophomore boy transform into a powerful missionary.  After we ate we listened as he gave us a spiritual message that was amazing. I had a good brain smile realizing that I had spent hours teaching scripture to him and now here he was at my kitchen table oozing with the spirit and teaching me. I was so proud of him.  It was such an amazing moment. I loved it. I love when you realize that the people who matter never really stop being apart of your life symbolically, but sometimes it's so nice to see them tangibly eating tacos at your table and bearing their testimony and feeling thankful that every once in a while paths cross again that make you feel so happy to have the the humans in your life that you do.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


One of the things I love about having Liv is that I don't have to guess how she feels.  If she is tired and sick of the grocery store, she has no problem arching her back and screaming like she is being stabbed in the shopping cart.  She also can't contain her excitement when she finds something she loves.  Adults aren't like that. It's good that they don't scream on the cereal aisle at the grocery store but it's not good because I feel like adulthood sometimes takes the wonder and excitement out of ordinary living.  All of sudden you have bills, Santa doesn't exist and you don't get a sticker when you don't cry at the dentist.  Life gets hard and with that, it becomes harder to feel excited. Stress and logic replaces wonder and astonishment. 

In 3 Nephi 2:1 it says:

"The people began to forget those signs and wonders which they had heard, and began to be less and less astonished at a sign or a wonder from heaven, insomuch that they began to be hard in their hearts, and blind in their minds, and began to disbelieve all which they had heard and seen."

Children are easily astonished. Adults are suspicious and logical.  I miss feeling astonished at simple things like band aids magically healing any injury, worms on the sidewalk after it rained, and how good squeeze-its and dunkaroos tasted.

Having Liv makes me feel astonished at simple things.  If she sees a dog it's like the best day of her life. If we go to a park with a crappy slide that doesn't even twist, she acts like she just got a fast pass to Disneyworld.  The other day it snowed she went outside.  I think her face shows her feelings better than any caption.  The only weakness is that these photos don't have audio so you can't hear how high she shrieked at squealed every time she touched it.

I want to be more easily "astonishable".  I think that's one of the reasons that it's me that needs to learn to be more like her..."for such is the kingdom heaven."  I think heaven will be a dang good time if it's a lot of people who love life like Liv.  I'm so glad I have 32 pounds of heaven in my home even if she does scream on the cereal aisle. 

Saturday seriously is a special day...

 There is nothing better that having time.  The more G is in residency the more I appreciate time together. Last Saturday Gar was home and it was the perfect day of doing nothing. I love those kind of days. Days where you don't need to look at a clock the whole day because you have no obligations.  Saturday was a no clock day and I loved every second.  G vacuumed the stairs. Liv and I went to a garage sale and bought hungry hippos. Gar worked out in our home gym (ie the living room) with Liv as his personal trainer:

 We had female rocking in the chair. This is probably the most common sight in our house. Liv loves to do everything Grace does which would be fine except for the fact that Grace doesn't do much besides need to be held, poop, cry, and eat.
 We had our own little backyard barbeque:
 And enjoyed several rounds of hungry hippos except Liv didn't like the loud  noise and insisted on yelling, "Soft" whenever Gar and I tried to play and instead hand fed the hippos quietly by lifting up their mouths and gently placing the marble inside. 
I'm just pleased that when the Earth was being created, Saturday was born because just like the song says, Saturday is indeed a special day...

Seibold Time....

Grace was born at a convenient time since Tanner and Dyl had presidents day weekend off so the Seibolds came to ski, help and bond. I couldn't have been more thankful for the help.  Even though I knew it was a crutch, I welcomed any help that whole month and it was a titanic sized blessing.
I think that being extremely organized is genetic because I firmly believe G received that DNA inheritance from his mother.  My pantry has never been so meticulously organized and cleaned.   It was so wonderful to not have to worry about meals or cleaning and just relax and work on getting Grace healthy.  
 While they were here it was Michael Jordan's 50th birthday.  When you are in a box office best seller like Space Jam, how can you not celebrate? Dylan won the quiz. #23 would have been proud...

Let's be honest, MJ's best feature is his lips so of course we played pin the lips on the Bulls Super Star. 
We also had Mexican food (now that I think of it, buffalo chicken tacos are not Mexican but who cares) one night complete with moustaches...
I look like Hitler but the tacos were good anyway.
Liv was terrified by what she saw. I have a feeling if she ever has this problem, she will wax.

Having my sister Beth here was a high light in my life.  I don't think I will ever stop hoping that she will move back in with us someday....
We went to a movie, played games, ate my first corned beef (which deserves a post all on its own) and enjoyed being together.  I am so grateful for family.