Thursday, September 30, 2010

color me happy

She has a few favorite activities these days. All day long we rotate through singing "I've Been Working On The Railroad" (with its accompany book), doing the alphabet puzzle (she's got a surprising number figured out), sorting through blocks (she doesn't so much build as sort), and coloring (or just emptying and filling the crayon box). I'm finding less and less time to myself, as she prefers a partner in these activities. But I can't say that I'm complaining too much. My dirty bathrooms might have something else to say about the matter, but then when did I listen to them anyhow?


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

say cheese!

So the Little Miss is really into seeing her picture on the LCD screen of the camera these days. She thinks it's pretty funny that a little Annabelle (or Aaaahh-Bell as she refers to herself) is sitting in there. I was snapping pictures of her (as I often do) and she motioned that she wanted to see. So I took one of us together. Here's what I got when I told her to smile:

Really? How does one even make that face? The next tries were a little better:

You know how they say your nose never stops growing? Evidence above. Speaking of noses, she woke up this morning with an awesome faucet for a nose (and the cranks to go with it)...

...and when I go to wipe said spout, she often whines, "Booooggggeerrrr!" I shouldn't laugh at her pain, but oh man is she a crack up sometimes.

Monday, September 27, 2010


Dear Summer:

I don't know if you missed the interoffice memo regarding sharing, you know, those little messages passed from cloud to cloud on a lightning bolt, but it's time to give Fall a turn. I feel like you're kind of being a hog, taking up all these precious days that could otherwise be cool and crisp and full of hints of winter. I think that you need to stop being so selfish and let go. Sometimes you have to share, Summer.

I've got a closet full of long sleeves just begging to be released from the grips of their plastic hangers, and you are holding them back from reaching their full potential. How does that make you feel? It makes me feel glum and depressed and hot to boot. It's September. And even though you refuse to recognize that indeed, it's time for you to call it a day (or a season as it may be), the canyons have taken notice. Because look what we found:

That's right. Leaves. Lots of them. Changing colors. BECAUSE THEY LOVE FALL TOO.

I think you could learn to love Fall if you just gave it a chance. Plus, then you could take that much needed vacation. Trust me, we could use one too.

Never Was A Fan and Now Totally Over You

Photos taken in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons. We headed up Little first. Then someone little barfed all over. So we turned around and headed to the nearest washing machine. Jess headed up Big Cottonwood Canyon while we waited for things to wash and dry.

The car still smells like barf. If you were wondering.

And here you go Grandma. A photo of said projectile engineer the day before, since she ruined any photo ops the day we found fall.

Friday, September 24, 2010

for those of you

For those of you like me who think you took ample photos of your babies, check this blog out. At first I thought it was strange. And then I was mesmerized. And now I'm obsessed. I think this one is my favorite (although the above is pretty freaking cute too).

For those of you who ever need a new recipe, just head on over to My Kitchen Cafe and try any of her recipes. Seriously. If it sounds good to you, it will be good. No lie. She never ever fails me. This week we tried her Italian Meatballs (I ate them like candy and cheated by serving them with just our favorite out-of-the-jar spaghetti sauce - so delish) and her Cheesy Skillet Chicken Rice with Green Beans. One tip: her recipes generally make huge batches; we usually halve the recipe for our tiny family, especially since the smallest of our family eats like a mouse these days.

For those of you (like me and my sisters) who have been faithful users of Pantene's Smooth and Sleek product since its existence (like a decade?), don't despair at their recent "rebranding" efforts. (Why must they insist on changing a good thing!) Because their new replacement product coated my hair with a nice greasy sheen and left behind a staticy residue, I tried Aussie's Sydney Smooth (at the recommendation of my sister). It's just about the right amount of smooth and sleek (Pantene's was really the best), and it also makes my hair smell pretty much edible. (By the way - the secret to smelling good is good smelling hair. I may or may not have a sister who during our growing up years just coated her hair in perfume and skipped the shower on occasion.... :) )

And for those of you who were having trouble locating your teeth, a demonstration:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

an ordinary day... just what i needed yesterday...

...this must be the sweet life... couldn't be any better really...

...i am blessed...

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

fighting fate

POST EDIT: Because a few people have asked - I'm not having the entire thyroid removed as of yet. Just one half, the part that looks funny. If it reveals additional problems, then we can all say goodbye to the thyroid.

Years ago, when I was a senior in high school, I had a moment that in large measure defines the way I live today. I remember looking in the mirror and not only not liking what I saw physically but having a very distinct realization that if I did not make changes now, there was a hereditary path I would likely follow. That night I tried to run. I made it probably a quarter of a mile. Maybe. But I didn't stop trying. Every night I added the distance of a lightpole. By the end of that year, I was running five miles without stopping. In the few years that followed, half marathons. And then a marathon. I changed my eating habits - although chocolate and Diet Dr Pepper continue to be major problems :) - and even when injuries effectively ended my running career (I like to think, just "for now"), I started spinning. This "obsession" with my weight isn't so much about the number on the scale (in fact, I don't own scales) so much as it is the knowledge of what I could become if I stop, if I let it get out of control. I want to be healthy - in body and mind - forever. I owe it to Annabelle. And Jess. And myself.

A month ago, when the nurse practitioner informed me I had some sort of thyroid issue, I thought she was nuts. I mean, sure these last ten pounds are stuck in my doughy, stretched out middle, and although I'm not a health nut, I'm certainly not unhealthy in my lifestyle. But then the tests confirmed her suspicions. Indeed, I have Hashimoto's disease (does anyone else find it completely fitting that I have a Japanese disease - woot woot!). To keep it short and simple, the antibodies in my body are attacking my thyroid, which makes my brain think it needs extra help, which makes the thyroid essentially "grow" or swell.

This morning I visited a specialist, an endocrinologist to be exact. She explained that in one out of ten cases, growths or nodules resulting from an overactive thyroid can be cancerous (which are simply removed). The growth on mine has several indicators, and while I could just have a biopsy, I've elected to have it removed. It's minor surgery, but unlike the biopsy, the results are conclusive. If indeed the growth is cancerous, we can all say goodbye to my thyroid (and good riddance really) and goodbye to cancer. I'll take a hormone pill every day for the rest of all time in any case, and although this sounds scary, it's pretty basic. Due to my health and physical activity for the last decade, what could be a bigger issue is a very manageable one.

I've always taken great pride in my efforts to stay fit, to be healthy. It's something that means a lot to me and not for just the simple vain reasons, although those obviously come in to play at times. It means I'm respecting this body I was gifted, taking the best care of it that I can. Today, I'm so very grateful for my health and grateful for that prompting I had years ago to start running and make changes. Not only did it keep me in my jeans but it also kept what could've been a serious issue from escalating. It enabled my doctor to notice something unusual about an otherwise generally healthy body. And I'm so grateful.

Because me and that Belle? We intend to be BFFs forever. With or without that pesky thyroid.

Monday, September 20, 2010


In Japan, you will often see the locals squatting next to the road, chatting away. Often, it's business men, suit coats left in the office, ties thrown over their shoulder, and they sit and smoke and chat and tap their cigarettes into the city approved ash trays (sewer grates or other actual spots designated for smoking). When Jess served his mission in Tokyo, although he didn't participate in the smoking part, he did acquire this Japanese ability to pop a squat for hours at a time. And I'm sure that most toddlers have this ability like Annabelle, but I think it's perfectly cute when the two of them have a conversation like this, squatting.

I'm generally not a part of these conversations due to my inability to bend my legs like that without snapping into forty three pieces.

{the end}

Sunday, September 19, 2010

ol' faithful fotos

Remember when we went to Yellowstone?
I realize that it was weeks ago now, 
but the photos were just too good 
to keep penned up on a hard drive.

Sometimes on these road trips
I complain about all the driving
and the eternal photo op stops
but if I'm being honest,
it's completely worth it 
for memories like these.

Oh, and we can't forget
the cutest wild animal we saw on the trip:

Because we all know Grandma doesn't come here
for the pictures of nature. :)


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