Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Resolutions


The funny thing about New Year's resolutions, in my experience, is that nobody is impartial to them. They either 1) have a list ready made with such glorious anticipation they actually pen the items while already getting a headstart tread on the elliptical, or 2) hate them, and claim to be completely above the absurdities of making resolutions they don't intend to keep. This year, I'm falling somewhere in between. I'm never sure what exactly I'll keep, but pleased that I've made a list:

1. Stop hating January.
Lily's birth is the only wonderful thing I can come up with about this month. I really think I probably suffer from Seasonal affective disorder and January is the unfortunate scapegoat for my lack of Vitamin D. Ever since childhood, I've simply despised and felt a strange sense of sadness during this month. I distinctly remember declaring, "I hate January" on a cold afternoon driving home with my family when I was around 10 or so. My Dad responded with his very frank and slightly perplexed, "Why would you hate January? It is a perfectly good month and there is nothing you can do about it anyways so why would you hate it?" Such clarity. I don't know, Dad, but I'm sure the answer will someday be discovered in the same pocket of the universe that houses the reason you sported a handlebar mustache for a solid 3+ years.


2. Be a nicer person.
Generic as all get-out, I must say. But so true....what the world's needs now...is love...sweet love....
Who wants kindness when there is juicy delicious gossip!?! Self righteousness and judgement!? Ahhhhhhh!.

3. Exercise more.
Or at least once. "More" would imply that "some" was actually occurring. It's just hard to muster the strength to work out if I'm not morbidly obese. I see no reason to part with Funfetti cupcakes and an extra hour's sleep for perfection. (I think poor Tyler might have another opinion.)
Addendum to resolution #3 : Come up with resolutions more original than exercise.

4. Realize that I can't have it all.

I should really say "accept' that I can't have it all. I already do "realize". This is the hardest part. I'm not sure if I'll ever master this resolution. Deep down, in the dark corner of my ambitious soul there is a voice telling me that the women who have tried this/that/theother and have failed to manage it all perfectly simply didn't remember to try it this/that/theother way - but, maybe I do have that little something something of what it takes to make everything work like a well greased wheel. Consequently, I overextend myself on a regular basis and end up shrieking and sobbing like a freak at my husband or children at the most inopportune times. I'll start eliminating and substituting here and there:

Instead of...perfect house, extra money, lovely hair, new jeans, Lily and London's crisply pressed and matching outfits, fabulous Young Women's lesson, bachelor's degree, organized cupboards, content husband, a brisk jog, spiritual nourishment, organically prepared meals...

I'll try...messy house, lovely hair, brisk jog, content husband, fabulous Young Women's lesson, Lily in those dirty white church shoes she adores so, and tuna fish sandwiches for dinner.

5. Soak it up.
I'm actually good at this. I feel like I've savored my children's childhood and husband to the last goody drop. But there is still plenty of room for improvement - plenty more to guzzle.

6. Stop swearing.

To my LDS (Mormon) readers, I might have just as well admitted to being a stripper. Not because I think they would judge me, but because of the standard (to which I completely agree with) I hold myself to. Here you have a girl (me), raised by the most ladylike and gracious woman known to the female sex (my mother), cursing like a dirty sailor when her temper flares up (known to occur on a somewhat regular basis)? I often sit in Sunday school shame-faced as the latest meal sign-up is handed to me from a fellow lovely and charitable Mormon woman, and all I can think in my head was, "I said the 'sh' word yesterday when I spilled ranch dressing everywhere, oh yeah...and later referred to so-and-so as a 'complete a**' (*ahh, swearing coupled with judgement to boot - excellent combo - and for the record I didn't say it around my children. But have been caught in the act, I guess...Nonna informed me one day that Lily stepped on her scale while visiting at her house, and promptly repeated the words, "Damn it." I'm not going to claim total responsibility for that one, nothing can be proven 100% - but there is a slight possibility that she may have overheard her mother's previous conversations with her own scale during a morning weigh in. )
Take it from me, nothing is more unattractive in this world than the following two things:

1. English teeth

and

2. People (especially females) using foul and grotesque language

7. Read, read, read. And turn off the television.



8. Be better than I was in 2008.



Hardly a comprehensive list. Still, a decent place to start. 2009, here I come.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas

In the left corner...it finally arrived: A "Pay Dou ice ceam maker"!!!
(Play dough ice cream maker. Lily's main request from Santa.)
And don't ask me why I don't have morning pics snapped of my children actually opening the presents. I was too busy with the video camera. Who takes pictures of the presents alone, and no children? The type of people who go on vacations and snap pics of the Denny's they stop at along the way
(and me, apparently).
Sorry.



The infamous, long awaited
"Big Gwurl Bed"




And Santa's corresponding
"Goodbye Binkie"
letter.







Thanks for the lovely dresses, Nonna!





Why do we post pictures of ourselves? Let's be honest... it's because we think we look good in the photo. We all know the myspaces and facebooks of the world are just plastered in desperate pictures of girls trying to prove their validity as undiscovered models or viable candidates for Girls Gone Wild. I've decided to go against the grain here, as you can see: I look tired. My dress makes me look fatter, and the hot black boots aren't even visible, nor my curly blunt pony tail with with the pearly bobby pins. Why do I post? Because someday, in the distant future, I will wish I had put photos of myself as a young mother to compare wrinkles to - I figure if the pictures are sub-par, the contrast won't be so depressing. Merry Future Christmas, dear self. (Lily took this photo by the way)







And a Happy New Year!!!




Monday, December 22, 2008

Pillow talk

"I'm sad you have to go back to work tomorrow. Isn't it nice how we love to spend time together? I was thinking about this today, and I guess I take for granted the fact that not all marriages are like that...I just assume everyone wants spend all their time together when they're married, but some don't."

"Weird. It's like for us, we can't get enough of each other."

"Yeah, I always want to be with you."

"Yep, especially this morning. We really couldn't get enough time together this morning, huh?" (*I think the phrase "Why don't you just do us all a favor and not talk for the rest of the day" was muttered during the Sunday morning church preparation)

"Well, not this morning. But every other morning usually."

"Yep."

"I love you."

"I love you more."

Goodnight.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy birthday, lovebug.




London,

For your first birthday party, I decided on a Ladybug theme about three weeks after you were born (you really have to take advantages of these times as a mother, before children begin choosing their own themes like Handy Manny or Spongebob Squarepants...oh, the horror!).
Anyways, when Lily was born, I was gifted the book "Fancy Nancy" from Shinae, Amy, and Jaime to celebrate her arrival. When you later graced us with your arrival, a book followed in the mail shortly thereafter
from the same girly fan club, entitled :
How Perfect! Even then, just a few weeks after your birth I immediately plotted and proclaimed that a "ladybug" was a perfect way to describe you, and hence would be the theme of your first birthday. (Some are aware that I have a weird bug/turtle/animal association thing going on with my kids...but I tell you!: You are a darling ladybug! You are kind and cute, funny and round, silly and sweet, delicate and intelligent! So are ladybugs, yes? no? whatever!)

Serendipitiously
, you continued to reinforce my ladybug leanings as you became my "cuddlebug" and "snugglebug" and "fatty patty lovebug" throughout the first glorious year of your existence. You are the uber-de-uberest, most-est edible, kissable, huggable, squeezable, lovebug enjoyment...and I wanted to create a ladybug land for the record book.


So, before I plaster the blogscroll with darling pictures of your big celebration, let me begin by telling you I'm so glad you're only turning the big 0-1. Because hopefully you will remember
nothing of the my behavior leading up to the fesitivities. (But don't worry, I'm sure your aunts will eventually fill you in on the part where I threw the frosting filler during a pathetic tantrum at the failure of your cupcakes to look like ladybugs...they were more like dirty red blobs with black streaks...and I was more like a dirty hag OCD mom ruining the mood due to a lack of sleep and perfectionistic tendencies. Pardon the pun, but can't a girl just have her cupcake and eat it too? Can't I try to throw a perfect little celebration after a solid week of no sleep, a husband in finals, and grocery shopping with THREE children under the age of THREE without turning into Momzilla? Does it always have to be a choice between sanity or a perfectly tiered ladybug cupcake pyramid?)







Can I really be blamed though?! I just wanted to throw a party worthy of the celebration you have been in our daily lives, and oh what a celebration you have been! A celebration that human language fails to properly describe. A miraculous, chubby, smiley, adorable piece of evidence revealing I really can't get too much of a good thing. I'll never tire of loving you...and I'll get the birthday thing right one of these years.

Until then,
thank you for bringing more tingle-all-the-way-to-your-toes joy than your tongue-tied, sappy, and eternally grateful mother will ever be able to properly articulate.

I love you, I love you, I love you,
ladybug girl.

Love,
Mom

P.s... I'm sorry to have to end on a sad note...however I must tell you that you did, at the mere age of one, already break your poor father's heart, when after all the partying you ended the evening in the arms of another man...




(Max) (Shocking, London, a married man too?)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Missing my childhood

Although I'm loving my very adult, mother, wife life...I can't help but wake up on a snowy day and be sad I don't live with this kid anymore:





Who used to wake up everyone in the house at 6am screaming if it happened to be snowing. Are you surprised? Ah Cubster, you are one of a kind.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Great expectations

Attempted baking Christmas goodies this evening, only to forget the SIX teaspoons of baking powder that were called for in the recipe. I guess we'll now be delivering more Hanukkah-esque, unleavened sort of goodies. Talk about a total schmuck...what kind of regular baker misses something like that? One who was too busy trying to stop Lily from turning the mixer on full blast, licking the spilled raw egg that dripped from its shell, and demolishing the freshly cut cookie dough shapes.

My heavens, advertisers are such liars. This was nothing like the Toll House cookie commercial. I'm glad you thought it was funny.

Once again, my problems usually lie in the lofty expectations, don't they?

One thing that has and continues to heartily exceed all of my expectations thus far:

1. Being a Mom to our two, now sleeping girls tucked in their beds with their favorite lullaby CD.

2. Marriage to you.

Thanks for never letting me down. I love you.


love

me

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Decisions

There is a battle raging inside of every decorating obsessed female during the holidays:

Colored lights, or white?


Organic winter foliage or stumpy stuffed snowmen and crafty Santa sleighs?

Monochromatic peace tranquility, or an Elve's busy multi-colored workshop?


Or at least, this battle rages on in me. Year after year after year. Psycho as it is. Tyler can attest to the fact that I've been known to stare at blank walls for longer than thirty minutes. Poor man, he thinks I'm am actually watching the movie...only to discover I'm obsessing about what to do with the shelves above the television. (*This is where even a Mormon could make an argument in favor of shacking up before marriage - you can catch these sort of illnesses before the big plunge, the poor boy was blindsided. Too late. buuh haa haa.)

I first presented the idea of decorating the tree with white lights pre-children, as Tyler and I purchased our first Christmas tree for our darling condo. I was immediately confronted with baffled pleas from my husband:

"What?! No way! White lights are boring. Aaahhh! You've got to be kidding me."

He touched on my inner-kid nerve and I promptly acquiesced. Besides, you've gotta adore a man who loves Christmas. We've lived in two different homes since our condo, and the first thing Tyler inevitably mentions during both purchasing processes sounds something like:

" This house is awesome. You can fit like a 17 foot tree in it."

Never mind the master bath. The cabinetry. The square footage. Or that Christmas only accounts for 1/12 of the time we will inhabit the dwelling. If the ceiling is high enough to house a forest, you'd better believe the Haacks are interested.

So, Santa's workshop it was/is.

And yet, as I'd channel surf HGTV and see the gorgeous white lighted bay leaf wreaths - magical in their simplicity - the infernal tug of war between adult decor vs. happy children decor continued to antagonize my innards.

BuT NoT tHiS yEaR.


Cutting down our trees this year saved some cash, thus allowing me to justify TWO trees, and two separate looks:


Room one: Golden splendor (Yes, I name my rooms- have for a long time - and yes, I know there are starving people in the world and more important things to worry about. And I do, but a girl's gotta have a little break from the never-ending anxieties of society. Some use alcohol, others narcotics. Me...I name rooms. So lay off.)



*Gotta love the floor model.

London village: after eternal sobs and moans over missing the beloved city, Mom and Lori couldn't take it anymore and began slowly giving me this village, piece by piece each year (birthdays, Mother's day, Christmas). Yes, that is the Globe theater you behold. And Buckingham, and The Tower of London, and the Tower Bridge, and the Orangery. And yes, I am shamelessly spoiled:

Thank you, Michaels, for your 40% off holiday foliage. And Ross, for your $1.99 salad plates.


Room two: Jolly holiday.


Can't beat cheap craft paper - that now fills my frames for the festivities.

It's looking to be a very merry, golden splendor, jolly holiday sort of Christmas.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Lil angels

"But I'm afraid," muttered the inquisitive and doubtful girl.

"Of what?" asked the Big Man with twinkly eyes and a bright grin.

"Being a big sister will be so hard. So many people to have to share with in that huge family. Being a mother will be even harder... and a wife!? Don't get me started! Taking on all of these titles by my lonesome self! Please don't send me down there! I want to stay up here where it is fluffy and soft!"

"But silly Miss, don't you remember earlier when I told you I'd always be there, watching and waiting for whenever you need to talk to me?" the Big Man replied.

"I'm not very good with things I can't see. And I tend to forget...you know me! I'll wander and get confused and not remember you are there, then I WILL be all alone and afraid! Plllleeeeeeeaase! Don't send me!" the stubborn girl pleaded.

He responded, "Oh my Word, what am I to do with you? ...
How about this...I'll send you some angels. They will help you. And keep you happy. When they are little you will love them like your own, and they will teach you to be a mother. Then, when you really do become a mother, they will help you with that too. They will help teach your children good things, and make them feel extra special and loved. They will make you laugh, and you'll feel very proud that they are yours - but you must not be too proud. You will all play and laugh and tease and joke, and they will make you very merry indeed. You must be very nice to your angels, ok?"

"But what if I forget to be nice sometimes? And what if I do the same thing I might do with you- what if I start to doubt because I can't see them? What if I start wandering around forgetting they are with me?" continued the girl in confusion.

With a roll of his brow, He remarked, "Really, I should double check your brain fittings: I was a little tired when I created you, your screws may not be screwed in just right...

First of all, if you aren't nice I'm sure they will forgive you if you're sorry. Goodness, has your Big Brother taught you anything? And, I'm not talking about angels you can't see my dear, I'm talking about your littlest sisters.
They are the best ones I've got...I've kept them on layaway for a special occasion. You're going to love them, I've already had many requests for them to be substituted elsewhere. But, I think they're especially perfect for you and so I'm sending them to you - as long as you try not to cry on every one of their birthdays lamenting the fact that they grow so quickly - that just makes everyone uncomfortable."

"Hmmmm...well, maybe...
Could they be just one more thing?...You said they would make me laugh and help me and make my life happier, but can they be really really beautiful too?"

"Of course. I had already planned on that."

"Oh, ok. I guess I'll go then."

"Good. Glad that's settled."













Sunday, December 7, 2008

Lily Lu speaks...

It's Lily here. Actually, as you can see from the attached photos below, I think the more appropriately fitting name you may refer to me as shall be:

Princess Lily Lu Flower Girl Magical Fairy Darling Extraordinare.



See my necklace? It is quite exquisite.


See my friends?








See that pretty older Princess over there? She is very very oh my good gracious beautiful. Mom says that is the best kind of beautiful, just like me.


See me running? Do you like my pretty hair?


See my Mom ruining my fluffy dash through the walkways? Really mother, now how is my hair going to flow beautifully in the wind? (She doesn't understand these sorts of things...dresses and hair look best when twirled and whirled.)


See me in Thomas the Train? *Mommy asked if I would please insert "Cadillac Escalade limousine"

She also asked if I would please insert this photo of her pretty red nails. Oh mother, really, what am I going to do with you? You are lucky you are so silly - otherwise I would have sold you on Ebay.






And last but not least, of course...a message to "Lun-deen":

Lun-deen, I know I have taught you many things. And I know you want to do many things like me too. You are my "schister", and schisters teach each other special things:


Like how to survive....


And how to walk....

But most especially, how to be a
Princess Flower Girl Magical Fairy Darling Extraordinare.

And I will teach you that too, as soon as you have pretty hair like me.

Love,

Lily