The Trials of a Busy Mom

Month: May 2009 (Page 1 of 2)

Go ahead–make my day

It’s kind of a blah morning for me. I don’t have anything scheduled for the morning, although I have a million things that need to get done. I haven’t exercised in two weeks, so I’m kind of sluggish, but still not feeling up to anything strenuous. (By the way, I went to the vein Dr yesterday, and while they said things are “looking good”, they said that yes, I might have pain and tenderness and swelling from the schlerotherapy for up to four weeks. Four Weeks? Are you kidding me?) I feel like I really should be getting something DONE, since it’s one of the last days of school, and next week I’ll have a million kids swarming the house (well, not a million, it just feels like it sometimes). So, do I concentrate on the laundry room? The kitchen? The outside? The garden? The flowers? The porch? My bedroom? The kids’ bathroom? Any of these things could take up my entire day and wipe me out. I also haven’t made bread in a few weeks, and we could use some bread, for sure.

Then the phone rang. “Oh,” I thought, “maybe it’s someone calling me wanting to do something fun!” I picked it up excitedly. It was a friend of mine. I had given her some tickets to the Bee Gee’s tribute band concert for Monday, and she had seemed excited about going. I asked her if she had gone. She said that she didn’t go, but that the tickets were used, so I’m not sure if she gave them to kids or friends, but I’m happy that someone used them.

Then we got to the GOOD part of the conversation. The part where she asked if she could bring. me. dinner! Let the rejoicing begin! Someone wants to bring me and my family dinner! Oh, that makes e happy! She asked if we had any allergies or picky eaters, to which I said no. I’m not going to discourage her from making anything she wants–she’s an excellent cook.

So, now there’s a bright spot in my day. Whatever things I decide I must do today, making dinner is not one of them. And with that one phone call, my day is looking up.

Time is indeed passing

If my life were a movie, there would need to be a “time is passing scene”. And for my time passing scene, I would chose having John come in to my room to wake me up every morning. When he was little (two or three), he would come in, climb over me into my bed, and whisper “pea-butter toast”. Then when he was a little bit bigger, he would come in and say he was cold. His solution would be to climb in bed and snuggle. Other days he comes in and complains that no one is helping him get his cereal, and when I come downstairs to help him, there are three or four kids sitting around eating cereal. When I ask them why they didn’t help John get his cereal, they say, “He didn’t ask for help!”

This morning he came in and said, “Mom, I need a flashlight.” I asked him why he needed a flashlight, and he said, “I’m doing hand puppets. First you need darkness and second you need light.”

How cute is that?

Well, time is indeed passing. I can’t believe that John is done with preschool. I’ve attended my LAST preschool graduation. I figure I’ve attended at least 9 preschool graduations for my 5 kids (some kids attended more than one year of preschool, you know). Those are always cute. Last year Megan had a 6ht grade graduation. This year Cole is “Graduating” from junior high, and moving on to high school, although there’s no ceremony for him. We’re just lucky he’s made it through junior high and hopes he’s more responsible with his high school years.

Soon I’ll have (gasp) children graduating from high school and moving on to missions or college. Too soon, actually. We’ve got to enjoy the time we have together!

Poor bunnies

Last year at a garage sale, I picked up the Book of Bunny Suicides. Each cartoon shows one or more white rabbits in their creative attempts to end their lives using a variety of items. While kind of disturbing, it is very funny.

Today the kids were fighting over this book, as kids will often do. You know how they ignore something for months and months until someone ELSE is looking at it and then they want to look at it right this minute? I’m sure you get the picture. Well, John wanted to READ it, and so I told the older kids to let John read it. And read it he did. But after almost each page he had to come over and explain it to me.

“Look, Mom, the bunny’s watching the sharks at the zoo.”

(And he’s got a hammer, ready to break the glass and let the sharks out)

“Look, Mom, the bunny is having a picnic”

(While all the animals are loading onto the ark, the bunnies sit on a blanket outside)

I laughed, but then I said, “John, maybe you shouldn’t be reading that book. It’s a little disturbing, and it’s sad. Why would those bunnies want to kill themselves?”
“I don’t know,” he said. But the kid is smart, and knew I don’t really like talking about death (bunnies or otherwise), so he toned it down for me. “Oh, look at this one, Mom, there’s like two parts of the bunnies! But they’re still ok.”

(The bunny had been sliced in half by ice skaters)

“Oh, look at this one. It’s his dog, and he’s going to jump on the stapler and make the dog mad so he’ll run away,” he said.

But I’m glad he’s still only five and that most of them don’t make that much sense to him, it’s just a silly book about bunnies. But if it made YOU laugh, you can see more of these silly bunnies here.

Even my muffin top has a muffin top

I’m one week past surgery, and darn it all, my leg still hurts. I guess when they tell me that there’s a “two week recovery time”, I shouldn’t just laugh it off and think, “Oh, I’ll be better in a couple of days. It’s just one little vein, after all.” One vein or not, this has been really hard.

For one whole week I’ve been wrangling my lovely compression stockings. They are SO TIGHT. I’m just wearing one leg of the set (well, I’m wearing both of the legs, but only one at a time). They are thigh highs, so I can just wear the stocking on the affected leg and not have to bother with the other leg. They stayed up fine for the first couple of days, but then the big old elastic top started to ‘roll’. And when a really really tight elastic starts to roll, it makes it very very tight, cutting into my leg.

I called my sister for advice. She wears compression stockings every day. Seriously. Every single day. So, I asked her how she keeps them from rolling at the top. She was a little confused, until I told her that they were thigh highs. “Oh, she said, I HATE the thigh highs. I bought a set of thigh highs once and I think I wore them one time. They squoze my thigh so tight, and then my fat poked out on the top. It was like I had two bums!” Now, this is from my sister, who despite being pregnant for the last 13 years of her life (10 kids–really), is as skinny as she was when she got married. If SHE thought she had a muffin top, imagine what I must be going through. Eek. Never mind. Strike that image from your mind.

So, although the compression stockings really do help my leg feel better, I hate the rolling at the top. So, today, I wrestled into my stocking (I’m all sweaty after I get it on. It’s the only workout I’m allowed to do right now, but it is seriously a workout), and then I had the brilliant idea to wear my Spanx power panty OVER the top of the compression stocking. Because it’s all tight and everything and then maybe it will keep the top of the stocking from rolling. And the spanx is actually less tight than the stocking. But so far it’s working. Keeping the stocking from rolling, I mean. But the muffin top that expands over the top of the stocking is getting sucked in by the spanx. That fat has to go somewhere, right? Remember how Rosie put it?
She opened the NBC broadcast cracking about her weight and the seamless girdle called Spanx she was wearing under her black sequined ensemble.

“It’s a onesie for chubby fortysomethings,” O’Donnell quipped. “I’d take a bow, but I can’t.”

So I’ve got a muffin top. In fact, I feel like I’m all muffin today.

And now I’m feeling like I would just love a muffin.


I am a good project starter. In fact, if you have been wanting to start a project, but you just can’t quite get the gumption up to start it, you should call me. I’ll help you pick out a paint color, I’ll help you buy fabric, whatever you need to GET STARTED. But what I have in startability, I lack a little in follow through til the end. I tend to get about 70-90% done with a project, and then it’s just not fun anymore. Or there’s something I didn’t buy in the beginning and I still need to buy it to finish it. Something like that. If I could get together with a FINISHER, we’d be a great pair.

But a week or so ago, my husband was out of town, and was going to be gone for over a week. I realized that that was the perfect time to work on a project. Not a huge painting effort, mind you, just a cleaning out project. I decided to tackle…..our bedroom closet. Ugh.

In order to clean a closet, you have to first REMOVE about half of that closet. And where does it go? Mostly on the bed. This is what it looked like.

You may notice I didn’t take a “before” picture of the closet. By the time I thought of taking a picture, half of the stuff was all over my bedroom.
The nice thing about doing this project when Ryan was gone, was that if I didn’t get done, I could just push everything over to his side of the bed and go to sleep without feeling guilty. And I did that. I threw out a TON of clothes. Pants that don’t fit, pants that even if they fit, they don’t look good, shirts that I don’t wear, sweaters that are outdated, sweatshirts that I don’t remember even buying, shoes that are old or I couldn’t find a match for…. You know how it goes. By the time I was finished, I had about 8 garbage bags of stuff to go to D.I.

And my closet, oh my closet! It has a floor! With carpet on it! And it’s big. When it was all cleaned out, my 13 year old daughter came in and said, “I could sleep in here! In fact, I could sleep 6 of me in here.” No, I don’t make her sleep in the closet, (except maybe when we’re on vacation) even though she would think it’s fun.

And it now looks like this.

And all my shoes sit on the shelves like this

That picture makes it look like everything’s falling over, but really, it’s just the weird camera angle.

This project that should have taken me two days, maybe a weekend, lasted almost a whole week. Because, like I said, I’m a starter, not a finisher.

Once I had all the bags in the car to take to DI, it then took me 3 or 4 days before I got THAT all out. I tried a couple of times to drop it off, but they were closed and they don’t allow you to just dump things there after hours anymore. It all came in handy, though. Friday night when Megan’s soccer game started late and it got really cold, I was able to rifle through the bags in the back and find sweatshirts for everyone! They weren’t their size, but who cares when you are just putting it on over your coat?

So by the time Ryan got back, everything was cleared off his side of the bed, and the closet was done. Now if I just had the energy to do that to every closet.

Another fun project Ryan worked on over the weekend was locks. He brought home some new deadbolts that instead of a key, you can use a code. The kids were so excited! They were full of what if questions about the codes, and who can have their own codes, and what happens if we have guests, and does each guest get their own code, etc.

The kids were quick to point out that we needed that the other day, when MOM WASN’T HOME when they got home, and DIDN’T leave a door unlocked, and they were STUCK outside for all of 10 minutes before I got home. Yes, I’m a terrible mother, and they are poor latch key children. Boo-Hoo. But now, I don’t have to worry if they get home before me. Because they can open the door! They were all so thrilled about it (especially John) that they went in and out multiple times, JUST to unlock the door with the keypad. John volunteered to go out and get the mail for me (twice) and unlocked the door both times. It’s just so much fun, and they feel so powerful. Of course, a couple of the kids suggested they get one of those on their bedroom doors so they can lock everyone else out, but that’s not gonna happen.

Today, since I didn’t have the energy to go grocery shopping like I should have done, I decided to work on some curtains for the boys’ room. No pictures yet, but I’ll post some when I’m all done. Think bandana in blue and yellow. Hopefully I won’t hate it when I’m done. Because sometimes projects are like that. You think it’s going to turn out one way, and then when you are done, it doesn’t look anything like the picture you had in your mind. Maybe that’s why I’m a project starter and not a project finisher. If it’s not turning out like I imagined it, I get frustrated and don’t want to start.

But, at least I’m not afraid to start.

So, what are YOU working on?

That’s nice to know, insurance company. Thank you.

I got the mail today and opened a letter from our insurance company, which said:

“We reviewed your request to cover Endovenous ablation therapy of incompetent vein…blah, blah, blah…. AND we determined that the health care service is eligible for coverage.”

Wow. Thank you. It’s nice to know that, since I had the first procedure TWO DAYS AGO.


I’m feeling a bit better now. Yesterday was kind of a “poor lonely sad bruised me, I can hardly walk” day, but I stayed home, watched me some Gray’s Anatomy, and cried. Crying was good. Because after I cried, I felt better.

Today I got to take off the compression stockings and have a shower. And you should SEE the bruises. I was shocked at the grossness. Want to see? Here’s a close up so you can see the bruise better.

But you want to know the best part of the surgery? Besides the sexy support hose, of course. The best part is having meals brought in. Seriously. It’s been a LONG time since anyone’s brought in a meal, and I must say, I like it. And since I’m not really having a baby anytime soon, there really isn’t much meal bringing going on, so this was a nice treat. My visiting teachers brought in a meal on Thursday, and even though Ryan could have probably cooked up something, or I could have thrown something in the microwave, it was just NICE to have that meal brought in. Nothing makes you feel loved like a meal that you didn’t have to cook. Or plan. Or shop for. And if one free meal weren’t enough, my friends took it upon themselves to bring in another meal on Friday, and even though we tried to tell them that we had a soccer party to go to, they brought it anyway. You can just cook this and eat it on Saturday, if you want, they said. Wow! I feel TOTALLY loved! A meal in my fridge!

I’m going to have to remember how great this felt, and take someone else a meal soon. Not because they are having a baby, but maybe if they are having a hard day, or they aren’t feeling well, or maybe just because. Because it really does make you feel loved when someone brings in a meal.

Vein, you and me–we are so over.

Yesterday was the day for the vein surgery. Or should I say, the FIRST vein surgery. Because, supposedly, I’m supposed to come back in and do this again. I’m not so sure about that.

And really, could I have scheduled it for a worse day? I doubt it. With three softball games, and Relief Society thing and call backs for a play on the calendar, it makes me about want to cry. But, magically, I got an email that one of the games was canceled, and I’ve got a friend taking one child to a game, so Ryan only needed to go to one of the games. I’m trying to go easy on him.

To avoid going into too much detail, (if you want details, you can read up about it here I’ll just give you a few highlights…

**To avoid a WHOLE day of loopiness and being out of commission, I only took 5 mg of valium. Maybe I should have taken the whole 10 mg.

** Paper underwear is the next thing in sexy. Only you can’t tell which is the front or the back because the triangles are the same size, and they don’t really cover anything, so I don’t know why they bother.

**Plugged into my MP3 player, I could avoid most scary sounds, but I should have maybe turned it up louder. Or borrowed a video ipod and watched a movie or something.

**At the point when I thought I could not stand it anymore (think numbing shots all the way from your calf to the top of your thigh) and wondered if I could just say, “Um, never mind. I’m outta here,” the doctor says to me, “Ok, we’re JUST ABOUT to start the laser process.” What? What have you been doing this whole time?

**By the time we were done, I felt like me and that doctor were pretty close. In fact, if he’d have gone any higher with those shots, I would have had to smoke a cigarette afterward. If you know what I mean.

**Loved having two guys shove me into my compression stockings.

**I planned to sleep all afternoon, and darn it, I could only sleep for about an hour.

**The best part of the whole experience was getting Kneaders for lunch with my husband, and having dinner brought in by my visiting teachers.

So, today I’ll be limping around and feeling sorry for myself. Yep, that’s about it.

Our Mother’s Day weekend

We were quite busy over the weekend!

FRIDAY night I took the kids out to dinner at Wingers. It’s one of their favorite places to eat, and I hadn’t taken them out the whole time Dad was gone, and I had meant to, so Friday it was. It was also close to where Megan’s soccer game was, so that worked out nicely. While at Wingers, I of course spilled some sauce on my off white shirt. Dang.

After Wingers, I made a quick dash into Macy’s to buy another Zoo shirt. They were out. But since I was in there, I grabbed a shirt to change into. Vain, I know, but I had a problem with the big sauce stain on my shirt!

When we got to said soccer game, I’m pretty sure everyone in the surrounding cities must also be there for a game of some sort. No parking in the parking lot, no parking on the street (any street), and we couldn’t find the field they were supposed to play on. Well, we found the field they TOLD me they would play on, but our team was nowhere near there. After driving around the parking lot a few times and realizing that no one would be leaving for the next hour, I dropped Megan and Cole off and we went to find a place to park. I finally found a space at the end of the street. I quickly whipped off my stained shirt and put on the clean, new shirt. I shouldn’t have bothered. As soon as I got out of the car, I realized that gone was the 70 degree day, and in it’s place was a windy, 60 degree night. Ugh. We grabbed our jackets, chairs, hats, sunglasses and water bottles, and made the trek. We found our team. They were warming up still. Why weren’t they starting, even though game time was 10 minutes earlier? The team on the field was going into double overtime. Championship game and all. They eventually had a shoot-out, and our game started about 40 minutes late.

It was a hard game, and getting colder by the minute. I ended up going back to the car to move it closer, and to find extra layers of clothing from the bags and bags of clothes I had cleaned out of my closet last week and was trying to find a time to take to DI. I was able to find sweatshirts for everyone. Megan’s team ended up losing 2 to 0, so they took second place in their AA division. Not too shabby, girls. By the time the game ended, it was 9:00, dark, and REALLY cold. They still had to hand out trophies and have a little team meeting.

SATURDAY–Natalie, Jenna and I had decided to be brave and audition for the Alpine Community Theater’s “Annie Get your Gun”. I had such fun last year with Seussical, and I wished my kids had been more involved, so this year we decided to do it together. Only when I woke up on Saturday, I had NO VOICE. Seriously! I was like Ariel in Little Mermaid, only I didn’t still have my looks and my pretty face. I had this croaking frog voice. I tried singing along to the radio as I was getting ready. Maybe it’s just the usual morning hoarseness. Maybe that cold/allergy thing has taken over and is now residing in my throat! What was I to do? Well, I went anyway.

Even though it was the same procedure as last year’s audition with the picture, the measuring, the “dance”, the warm up and the audition, I was much more relaxed about it this time. Maybe because I was trying out in the morning with the kids (adults were supposed to come from 12-2, but I had asked if I could come with my kids in the morning, maybe it was because I had been through this before and I at least knew some of the people, or maybe I just didn’t care as much. I still suck at the dancing part, but since I was the only adult doing the little dance steps at the time, they had no one to compare me to. When it came time to sing, I did my best. I told them that I had had a voice up until that morning, but I knew that THEY knew that I could sing, and that I would be able to sing again someday. The girls did well in their little songs, too. I know they can sing louder and better, as I’ve heard them yell all through the house, but at least they did it. I’m proud of them. Although, girls, I’m sorry about the dancing gene. Maybe with lessons you can learn.

Once we were done with the auditions, we hurried home to don our Zoo shirts and get up to the Zoo. Since I only had 5, we had to do rock/paper/scissors with the girls to determine which one of them didn’t get to wear a zoo shirt. Megan lost. And boy, did she let us know about it all the way up to Salt Lake. When we got to the zoo, the parking was a nightmare, as it always it whenever they have an event day. We finally found a parking place up in the back lot, and luckily for us, we were able to buy a t-shirt at the gate.

(are you tired of reading? Well, here–take a little break and enjoy some pictures from us at the zoo! Maybe you’d like to get a drink? A snack? Go ahead. I’ll wait.)

megans-presents-028 megans-presents-036megans-presents-059megans-presents-081megans-presents-098megans-presents-124

When we returned from the zoo, I had just a few minutes to pop in dinner for the kids, as I had a DATE with two of my best friends in the world. It was like a pre-Mother’s day outing, and we enjoyed our dinner at the Blue Lemon. Yum.

SUNDAY–I had told my kids all I wanted for Mother’s day was a clean house and kids who don’t fight, and they really had tried to clean up after themselves. They made me breakfast–a yummy omelet! I got up and took a shower, since we had 9:00 church, but I didn’t tell the kids to get ready at all. At 8:00, I called down, and said, “Can I come down now?” NO! They answered, “we’re coming up!” They brought in breakfast on a tray and sang “Happy Mother’s Day to you” and gave me their cards and little present they had made at school. It was perfect. Then they had to hurry and take showers and get ready for church. We made it to church just in time, and had nice lessons there. After church, we had a lovely lunch of ramen noodles for the kids, and leftovers from my dinner out for me. I then instructed Natalie in the making of Mother’s Day chocolate chip cookies, and I took my mother’s day nap. Nice, eh?

After the nap, we were surprised with a visit from Ryan’s sister and niece. They brought over flowers, from her husband, Chuck, thanking me for being willing to sacrifice my husband for a week so he could go and help him on his construction project in New York. It was a nice surprise! After a simple dinner, we went up to visit my mom and dad. My sister and her family were there, too, and it was a nice visit. The kids had a great time, until they realized we were going to miss the Amazing race finale. Eek. So, rush home we did, and I let them stay up and watch it, so their friends at school wouldn’t spoil it for them and tell them who won.

Late that night, Ryan came home. It had been a good week for him, and they got a LOT done, which is good. He even brought me gifts. Chocolate and Real maple syrup from New York. Sugar and More Sugar. How well he knows me! megans-presents-130

So, as you can see if you made it through this long post, we had a FUN weekend! Mother’s Day was nice, even though hubby wasn’t here. Maybe he’ll cook dinner next Sunday instead.

Mother’s Day plans

I had bought my mom a Mother’s Day present a while back, and then in my disorganized state I couldn’t find it. Ack! But, after digging through the piles I have found it! So, Mom, you’re in luck. I do have your present! My kids, however, are a little unprepared. One daughter mentioned that I should take them to the dollar store so they could shop for Mother’s Day presents for me. But I don’t WANT any presents that they would pick out from the Dollar store, so must I take them?

All I really want for Mother’s Day is a clean house and children who aren’t arguing or fighting. But do you think they can pull that one off? Husband’s out of town, so there’s no one to remind them that they’d better behave and do their jobs “for Mom?” and if I tell them that, then it’s just more of the same nagging from Mom.

Saturday we are going to the Zoo. I won a set of five “Mom and Me at the Zoo” t-shirts. Wearing the shirts on Saturday gets you free admission to the zoo. Of course, one of the shirts was a size 2T, and I’m not sure if that will fit my growing five year old. I might have to go and pick up one more shirt, and see if I can exchange the 2 for a bigger size. So, that will be our “Mother’s day activity” on Saturday. It should be nice weather, at least, but it might be super crowded. We went to “Boo at the Zoo” back around Halloween, and it was SO crowded. I think I parked about halfway up the canyon. Let’s hope tomorrow’s escapade is not so crazy.

What are your Mother’s Day plans or traditions? Breakfast in bed? Roses? A visit from your grandkids? We’ll be visiting grandparents for sure on Sunday. Please don’t tell me your husband does some extravagant lovely present for you. I was talking to my hubby last night on the phone (he’s in upstate New York for a week) and we got talking about cars. I told him I might just buy myself a Mazda 6 (red) for my Mother’s day present. He went along with it and said I’d have to tie a big huge bow on it, and then go outside and proclaim, “I LOVE ME! This is the BEST present I’ve ever given myself! Thanks, ME!” Wouldn’t that be great? *sigh* That’s not gonna happen.

So, if you come by my house on Sunday and you hear my kids fighting and the house is a mess, don’t be surprised. I might just be hiding out in my bed reading a book.

Plan ahead, why don’t you?

Thursday is play group day around here. It started out with 6 four and five year olds, and it’s grown into an out of control group of nine (I think) boys. Each Thursday we look forward to an hour and a half of kid free time while the boys go and trash someone else’s house. Unless it’s your week, and then you have to entertain, corral, control, feed, and keep track of the herd of little boys.

It’s almost 11:00, and I just checked the calendar to see who the lucky mom is, who gets to host the play group today. It says “playgoup–me.” What? I’M hosting play group? Crap. It would be helpful to look at the calendar before the actual day, and see what’s going on.

Good thing I didn’t just start some huge time sucking project, or make plans to run some errands during that time. And it’s a good thing it’s nice weather outside. I guess I can work on the garden or the yard while the kids run around and play in the back yard. I’d better make sure I have Capri Suns and goldfish crackers on hand.

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