The Trials of a Busy Mom

Month: June 2009 (Page 1 of 2)

I win, and you win!

Remember that contest?

The one where I asked you to vote for my cute kid, and I would chose one commenter to win our awesome prize pack? Well, the contest is over, and I consulted with to chose a winner. The winner is #4, Amy! Cool! I’ll be seeing Amy tomorrow, since she’s my sister, so that makes it easier for me.

Well, I also embarrassed myself by asking EVERYONE I know to vote for me. Thanks to email, facebook, and the blog, I was actually able to reach quite a few people and ask them to vote for me. I even asked everyone at rehearsal for Annie Get Your Gun to go online and vote for me, and several of them said they did. And I’d like to thank you all for voting. I’m sure I asked you at least once, and you were probably starting to get annoyed with Paige and her requests for votes. But, you know what? It paid off! I got a call today from the promotions director there at Kosy 106.5, letting me know that I WON! It’s a trip for 4 to San Diego, with tickets to Lego Land, Sea World and the San Diego Zoo. I can’t believe I actually one an online contest! So to all of you who took the few minutes to vote for me, I REALLY thank you! I asked how many votes we actually had, and while he couldn’t tell me, he did say it was ‘over 100.’

My kids heard me on the phone and immediately picked up on the fact that Mom had won a trip. “How many? How many people get to go on the trip?” they asked. I told that that the trip was for only FOUR people, so we might not get to take everyone, only the well behaved children. Yes, I’m mean that way.

I have no idea when we’ll be going, but it will be fun to plan!

I’m thrilled, and once again, I thank you for voting for me!

Swim school

Today I had to carry my screaming child BACK to the pool for swimming lessons. Oh, the embarrassment. Have you had similar experiences with reluctant swimmers? I remember when Jenna was little, I literally peeled her off my body and threw her in the pool. –To the teacher, not just randomly thrown in the pool–. Today it was John’s turn. He started out great, but after 10 minutes, he got up like he needed to use the bathroom, and came to me instead. I don’t EVER WANT to swim, MOM! He kept saying over and over. When I decided that tough love was in order and I took him back to the pool, he was kicking and screaming and biting and pinching. Then he cried in the pool. I could hear him loud and clear crying, “I just want to go and talk to my mom!”

Oh the joy.

I apologized to the teachers, but they assured me that they have seen much worse.


I have an idea

Tonight is a free night for us. And by Free, I mean no kids! The kids are going to be sleeping over at their aunt Julene’s house, and they are VERY excited about it. Hmmm. No kids, I thought. I went to Ryan and said, “I’ve got an idea.” I think he automatically tunes out when he hears those words, but I’m not sure. So, in my most seductive and romantic voice, I said, “Since the kids are going to be gone tonight, why don’t I…” maybe I was getting his attention at this point.
“…get some paint! We can paint the family room! Doesn’t that sound great?!”

Well, apparently, to him it does NOT sound great. He did not jump all over that idea, even when I explained to him that this might be the ONLY time we have for the next month to paint, since starting next week we’ll have visitors for most of the month, and then the play and all that. And we could paint all night and be done by tomorrow.
Not going to happen.

Instead maybe we’ll go on a date or something. Isn’t there a Sandra Bullock moving playing now?

TV troubles

A while back, Ryan brought home a big old tv. For a grand total of about $40 bucks, he fixed it. Because he’s handy that way.

Then, in April, that tv broke. So we were forced to watch either a decent tv up in our bedroom, or a crappy tv in the basement. After a week or so of no tv, I let the kids move the Wii and the X-box downstairs to the crappy tv, so they could at least play. That turned out to be a good thing. Because now they can play rock band for hours without driving mom crazy.

Handy Ryan eventually took out the green tube from the tv, so that it actually worked, but there is just no green. Everything looks kind of pink. After a day or so, you get used to pink. Really. He should never have done that if he wanted to get a new tv. Because we can watch pink tv for a long time. Unless you are watching LOST or something where half of the screen is plants, having green is overrated. But, being the man that he is, Ryan was still pushing for a new tv. He brought home some kind of gadget from work, but couldn’t use it on our tv because…well, I don’t really know why. But we’ve actually been “shopping” for a new tv. But our visions of our perfect tv are a little varied. He, being a guy, thinks we need a BIGGG TV. Something you can see from down the street, preferably. And inputs? It’s got to have lots and lots of those, of course. Me? I’m ok with, well, whatever is the cheapest.

I broke down and told him that I was ok with him getting a tv for Father’s Day. How about this nice number from Costco? I suggested. Well, after some research, he came back and told me that the Costco TVs don’t have all the “stuff” he needs in a tv, and don’t react well with the whole home automation system. And since we are a beta test site for the home automation system, we must get the right tv, right? Hmmm. Sound like a ploy to get a bigger tv? Yeah, to me, too. BUT, he said, he had a dealer friend who could get us a tv at his price, or for a discount or something. A nicer tv. Plasma or something like that. With all the colors of the rainbow. Even green. I agreed and gave him the go ahead for the purchase of said tv. But you know what? If we get a new tv, we need a tv stand, or cabinet or something like that. And if there’s going to be furniture moving, there will have to be painting, right?

Yes, friends, it’s all in the spirit of the compromise.

Monday he actually brought the nice new tv home, and we set it up. It’s sitting on our lovely coffee table at the moment until I find a cabinet or stand that I like. Oh, yeah, and we paint.

The kids saw this very nice Expensive tv and said, “It’s kind of small, isn’t it?” SMALL? Are you kidding?

We’ve got to get this big old monster tv out of here.

Around the world in 80 days

As a family, we’re trying a new little “educational experience”. We’re learning about different countries this week. Our first stop was Italy. We picked Italy so that we could make our own pizzas.

Because it’s all about the food, right?

After dinner, we each told one or two interesting things about Italy, and showed where it was on the map.

So, today we’re talking about Spain. Hmmm. What kind of Spanish food can I make? Spanish Rice? Is that even Spanish? I guess I’ll be searching for some easy Spanish Recipe. So, even though it may not be the MOST educational experience, it’s kind of fun.

What are you doing to keep your kids’ brains alive this summer?

Our own Disney show

While driving in the car the other day, we were listening to a song on a new CD I won , and I was singing along to the song, and then checked to see who sang the song, and the kids already knew. “Oh, she’s on Disney channel, mom.”

Well, isn’t that great. Somehow our conversation turned to something like this:

Me: Well, Jenna, you’ll have to get your own show on the Disney channel, and then you, too, can record songs and be rich and famous. And I can be your manager.

Jenna: What would my show be?

Me: I don’t know. What WOULD your show be about?

Jenna: Something with dogs. Lots of dogs.

Me: And you could call it “Josie and the dogs”. Because you never use your real name, you have to have a character name.

Jenna: Then I want my name to be Chrissy.

Me: OK, Chrissy it is. Chrissy and the dogs? Chrissy’s dogs? Let’s think about that.

John: And I will be her neighbor.

Me: Ok, John. What will your character’s name be?

John: Joe. And I’ll like help her with the dogs and stuff.

Natalie: And the dogs can have superpowers and stuff.

Jenna: Where are we going to get all the dogs for this show?

Me: Well, that’s something you let the director worry about.

They kept asking questions and coming up with more ideas for “their show”, and I didn’t have the heart to tell them that this is all hypothetical and it’s NEVER going to happen, but I was glad that it at least got their brains thinking. And who would I want to play in this little show? I’ll play Chrissy’s other neighbor, the broadway star who is always rehearsing for a show.

It makes the yucky less yucky

Note to self. Don’t try to tackle the really yucky jobs around the house (like cleaning up after the birds) without a nice cold drink.

Oh, and send the kids outside before you start because you’ll just end up yelling at them if you see them lazing around when you are working.

I’m just sayin.

On Music and Memories

I managed to make it out garage sale shopping a week or so ago. What with rainy weather and rehearsals on Saturdays, I haven’t been out hitting the garage sales like I would like, but on this paricular Saturday, the boys were off at their fathers and sons campout, and I was taking all the girls with me to a rehearsal/work day for Annie Get Your Gun, and I took the girls out for an hour of garage sale goodness before we had to be to rehearsal at 8:45. Yes, we scored some good stuff, of course. One of those things being a fabulous “Gucci” bag. I put Gucci in quotes there, because it’s probably not a real name brand bag, but I think it’s fabulous. Yes, I have a little love affair with purses, do you want to make something of it? But when I am spending $4 for a new purse, I don’t see what the problem is.

ANYWAY, I really didn’t want to talk about purses. I wanted to talk about music. Yes, music. I know. Strange way of getting to the point. Yes. But, I picked up two CDs at a garage sale, and they’ve taken me back!

I hear that saxophone solo in “NEVER TEAR US APART”, and I’m instantly back to my junior year at BYU. My little finch Stevie is chirping away, and my friend Robin is there at my side as we do our air saxophone. I hear “NEW SENSATION” and I think of a roadtrip to Montana.

Or I hear “WE WILL ROCK YOU” or “ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST” and I’m whisked back to good old Brighton High cheering my lungs out at a basketball game. Oh, nostalgia. My kids were laughing at my ‘silly music’, but they really liked the “I want to ride my bicycle song” and had pretty much learned most of the words to that one by the time the day was over.

Music can really bring back the memories, can’t it? And it’s such a powerful emotional tool. Have you ever been watching a scary tv show or movie that got a little too scary? Just press the mute button. Without the music building and building it’s not so scary, right?

We’ve played This is the Christ in our bell choir for a few of our concerts, and I have to say that every time I play it, I get a little bit choked up inside. The message, the music, and the words are so powerful, that I can’t deny the spirit that fills my heart even when we are just rehearsing it.

Do you have those musical memories that come with certain songs? When I hear Raspberry Beret I think if my friend Ger, Simply Irresistible makes me think of Patty and Robin, and more than one Chicago song make me think of my brother. I used to love the Sugar Plum Fairy from the nutcracker, but after we played it in our first Christmas concert, I still haven’t really recovered from the stress. I can’t hear that song without cringing. Fishing in the Dark belongs to Michelle, and Three times a lady makes me think of Melinda and Sharmyn. And there are many, many more songs that bring back vivid memories for me. Is it that way for you, too?

I’m glad I have those memories, too. Because maybe when I’m old I will hear a Queen song and it will, even then, take me back to high school.

More fun and free

Last week we went to a really fun event at the BYU Museum of Art
There was a family fun day to celebrate the Walter Wicks exibit .

There were stations where you could build a castle with blocks
, and one station where you could build your own bubble wand out of these tinkertoy like things. Then you got to try it out with the soap and see how big of a bubble you could make.

Although crowded, it was lots of fun. There was a cookie decorating station, and then lots of Walter Wick’s books to look at, as well as the wonderful exhibit of his artwork and sculptures.

They also had a story time, a sing along, and face painting!

I left my camera in the car, and was trying to take pictures with my phone. I don’t know how well YOUR phone takes pictures, but mine is less than user friendly. Thankfully, my sister came and she had HER camera, so I was able to take some pictures of the kids after all. Thanks, Amy! She even took some pictures of us leaving. Thanks for capturing my best side, there.

We also love the Dan Steinhilber exhibits, especially the Styrofoam packing peanuts!

So, if you happen to be in the Provo area, you should really take the chance to check out these exhibits! They are there all summer. I don’t know when another family fun day will be, but I’m going to definitely try to do that again. A whole day of fun, and it was free!

And you know that those are two of my favorite words…fun and free!

It’s a contest! Help me WIN and YOU win.

Wow, have I got a prize package for you!
Do we have any Alex P. Keaton fans out there?
Children of the 80’s, you know who you are. Did you love Family Ties as much as I did? Well, I’ve got the 5th season (1987) on DVD up for grabs here.

Next, a book I received from the author,
Award-winning author Karen Wiesner is the founder of Jewels of the Quill, an award-winning group of authors in all genres banded together to promote their books. The group also does anthologies together. Woodcutter’s Grim Series–Classic Tales of Horror Retold is a compilation of the first two novellas in the series that Karen contributed to Jewels of the Quill anthologies, plus two bonus stories in the series never before published!

Also, a brand new Gladys Knight and the Pips CD–LOVE SONGS.

Everybody needs love, Take me in your arms and love me, The look of Love, Help me make it through the night, and more.

And, for a nice smell, I am throwing in a plug in home fragrance diffuser from Bath and Body Works.

This is a warm apple pie scent that smells like you’ve been baking all day! Yum.

And, because it’s not a good contest unless there is chocolate involved, I’ll be sure to throw in some chocolate for our winner, too.

Now, what do you have to do to win this FABULOUS prize package?

Here’s the thing. I’ve entered a “cute kids contest”, with the grand prize being a trip to San Diego. And you know how much I would LOVE to take my family to San Diego? Very much so, thank you. But in order to win, I need votes. Lots of votes!

To vote for my sweet daughter, go here and click on “vote now”. Then vote for #43.

Here’s the voting instructions:

How to vote:

1- Check the circle button next to the entry you wish to vote for (#43)
2- Scroll to the bottom of the entry list
3- Enter your email address
4- Press the vote button.
5- Check your email for your confirmation message.
6- Click the link in the email message you receive to verify your vote.
7- If you do not see the “circle” option buttons listed below, this means your vote has been entered or someone has already voted on your computer.

You can only vote once per computer
Once you have voted, come back here and leave a comment. You can only vote once per email address, but if you have more than one email address, maybe you could vote again, and then come back and leave another comment. And if your husband or kids have their own email addresses on their own computer, wouldn’t that be wonderful to have THEM vote and then come back and leave me a comment.

For 5 extra entries, blog about this contest! Your friends would like to vote for us, too, wouldn’t they? Then post a link to your blog post in a separate comment.

Help spread the word– Help ME WIN and YOU win. Voting is open until June 29th, so we will close comments here on June 30th and draw from all the qualified comments for our prize winner.

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