Monday, May 30, 2011



I welcome the holiday in it's entirety—lilacs on headstones, flags on porches, potato salad picnic lunches where we reunite with second and third generations, making up word games in our head to help us remember..."StEEve is married to AnEEta..." Seems to do the trick, until you realize that they're aging right along with you, faces and hairlines morphing and melding, and then it's really all just a crap shoot...

Anyway, apparently the heavens are suffering some sort of postpartum depression and can't seem to shake themselves out of it. I don't really know how to help, but clearly slapping the clouds over and over and over again while screaming, "GET A HOLD OF YOURSELF, YOU BIG FAT BAWL-TIT!" hasn't done the job. She continues to sob and wallow, slurching around in stained sweats permeated with the heavy scent of pancake syrup and too much Downey. She sits amidst a dozen loads of unfolded laundry, oblivious to her rising waters midsection threatening homes and property throughout the state of Utah.

She didn't used to be like that. Heavens used to keep herself up. She wore sky blue eyeshadow...painted her lips in sunset hues...her perfectly proportioned figure was kept locked and loaded within four seasons and river banks. Gracefully, she'd sop up her springtime tears with a linen handkerchief made of temperate breezes and moderate sunshine. But now...well, I think we can all see she's let herself go, and not even an afternoon of Oprah and ice cream can bring her out of it.

Hopefully she'll pull herself together before it's too late and the floods and mudslides are imminent. Until then, is there a Dr. in the house who can prescribe heavens some sort of upper, or downer, or whatevertheheller she needs to expedite the process?

I'll wait while you call it in. ;)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Sunday fairies prepared this magical bowl of pretty for our Sabbath day feast.

"Just a Bed of Roses" perfection. I wipe a happy tear.

This is the kind of awesomeness that just drips from my sister, Kara's being. She made me these—jealous? And just like a new pair of shoes that make a 5 year old run faster, I am now the most efficient and organized Relief Society Secretary the world has ever seen. Just ask Maren. Wait. Don't ask Maren.

So Brenda, from Just a Bed of Roses, is all bent out of shape about me not blogging so much lately. In fact, she kind of threatened that she might just walk away from her awesome shop, leaving me stuff-less, if I didn't cow down to her pressure. Do you know that this woman ties up her bags with beautiful silk ribbon and an OLD 45 RECORD?! SERIOUSLY! So "MOOOOO," I say, "Moooo!" Because I need Bed of Roses like I need thickening products for my teaspoon of hair. And yes, it IS that crucial.

Anyway, whilst shopping there yesterday, a damnable DUI headache came crashing through her open shop doors and slammed into me, "head on." (Punny.) But I popped some ibu and kept on keepin' on with my shopping expedition, because I can do hard things, people.

Fast forward two more ibus and four hours later, and I'm driving to U of U for a workshop, wind and rain slashing at my car, headache from hell hammering at my skull, stoplights that sensed my oncoming vehicle, and a sense of direction that is about as accurate as Hollywood's moral compass. I was half an hour late to a seminar with seven students. Not like I could slink into the back row without detection, you know. I apologized to the class and spent the next 2 1/2 hours trying to talk myself out of puking.

The room was sweltering, the lights were BLINDING and my pain meter was hovering between 9 and 10. I made it through to the end and stumbled out to my car, only to plead and beg to the heavens, ending every sentence with an annoyingly high pitch, "Please, Heavenly Father, PLEASE make this pain go away! I don't want to vomit in my car on the way home. And I know there are other people who have it way worse, and I can't imagine you are even paying much attention to my whining, but really, REALLY, is there a lesson I'm supposed to be learning here? Because I'm not, Heavenly Father. No, really—I'm not. My head hurts too much to comprehend any kind of life lesson right now."

The one sided discourse went on to the very last moment, before I squealed into my garage and managed to make it to my bedroom, disrobe, brush my teeth and climb into bed, all with my eyes completely shut. Not even shizzing.

Anyway, I'm now at a 4, which is serious progress. And why do I regale you with this? Mostly to excuse the fact that I'm still in my pajamas with yesterday's makeup smeared down my cheeks after 1:00 in the afternoon. Also, to set up a possible lawsuit I'm considering filing against Brenda, because I got the headache at her place of business, and I hear she has deep pockets, as all small business owners are known to have.

And yes, Brenda, I'll consider settling out of court—for a vintage brooch and antique linen a day. I'm drawing up the papers now. Sign on the dotted line.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Some day, when I'm awfully low, and the world is cold, I will feel a glow just thinking of you...and the way you looked...last night. (totally using this if she's dating a doofus and I need to break them up)

The best of friends~Jules and Shaniqua Porquita

Yesterday, Jules was at a church activity, where her awesome leaders taught the darling pre-teen girls how to make scripture cookies. So cleaning up today, I came upon the well as a special message she and her friend were sending back and forth to each other, as clearly, the spiritual nature of the activity overcame them both. Here is Julia's portion, verbatim and as follows:

"*Shaniqua Porquita (*name changed to protect the innocent) is weird, nasty and crazy and thinks 2+2=62 and eats boogers out of people's noses and licks dogs poo and eats eyeballs and then the eyeballs fall out of her butt."

Now I'm not completely certain why these girls were busy writing such...poetry...and from what Jules says, it was a collaborative joke. What I do know is that this is a proud, proud day for me, as a mother. And I can only hope and pray that someday you get to experience the very same thing.

From my mouth to God's ears.

You're welcome.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Cousin baldies. Don't ask.

Oh my holy junk, could this purse have screamed my name any louder? And because I'm a nurturer, I wrapped it in my arms and held it to my bosom on my way to the cash register.

The holy grail of youth in a bottle~I'll let you know how quickly I'm disappointed.

I would make out with this brooch if I could.

Beautiful "not dead yet" Mother's Day flowers. Sterling TOTALLY outdid himself with the flora and fauna this year.

I've been spending the last few days enraptured with blue blue skies, songs of birds and lilac blossom perfume breezing through my home. This is a celebration, my friends. A soiree for all things fragrant and pink. And because my windows have been thrown open wide, I thought, "Why not do the same with my wallet?" Thus, the preceding, Lisa is going to debtor's prison, but at least she'll be wearing new high heels for the journey.

The lengths I go to for your blog enjoyment. I mean I spend and I spend and I spend, and is it ever enough for you? No. No, it isn't. But don't ask me to stop, because I'm a giver and that would just be against my nature.

You're welcome.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


First off, I'm getting a root canal today.

Am I worried?

Well, I wasn't until I went to sit with a friend of mine who was in a horrific accident a few weeks ago. He's still bed ridden and has rods of steel weaving in and out of his body, holding it together.

He's going in for another surgery today, and I said, "You know what? I'm getting a root canal today...but I bet you'd rather be getting a root canal than having surgery, huh?"

"Holy crap, a root canal?" he responds, reassuringly. "No, not really. I think I'd rather be having surgery." Yeah, so. Kind of worried, now that you mention it.

But that's not why I called. You know how I'm the inappropriate secretary for my women's group at church? Yes, well, one of my jobs is to set appointments for visits, and usually the best way to reach them is through email. And I like to add a special little 'cyber eye contact' with each note I send, to let them know, "Yes. I see you," without having to actually say or hear the words—which is what Hillary Weeks did to me in the stadium at the Women's Conference a couple of weeks ago.

Loud and clear, Hillary. Loud and clear.

Anyway, a lady in our ward just had a baby about 2 weeks ago, and she was already at church,with the baby, which I thought was weird. Now every week, Megan the darling teenager, sits with this woman during the meeting, to help her with her children. So I see Megan with the brand spankin' new baby in it's carrier~no cloth covering him or anything~again, weird. I could just see him from the side—wee little body with teeny tiny hands and feet—but what I saw looked precious. And Megan would take him out intermittently, which I thought was weird once again, because the new mother just sat there, practically ignoring her offspring.

Anyway, I send this note, "Hello there! I caught a peek of your baby at church the other day and he is just darling! Can we come visit you tomorrow?" She answers back yes, and we set the appointment. So I go to my Relief Society Presidency meeting this morning, to discuss important matters~things like my root canal and such. They seemed really interested, but changed the subject immediately. So I reached over and picked up that social cue, and started to regale them with how efficient I am at making appointments.

Me~"I made an appointment with Chayla. Can't believe she was at church already."

Maren~"Did you see how many times Megan had to take her robot baby out?"

Me~"Ha! I know! Wait, what? Robot baby."

Maren~"Yeah, Megan's robot baby from school. She's had it all weekend. She even had to bring it to church, and it would start to cry, so she took it out, like three times, during Sacrament."

Humiliating illumination.


We had a good laugh.

And now I'm presently pre-employed.

Which is odd.

But Maren assures me you can be fired when you're a volunteer.

Who knew?

Sunday, May 8, 2011


My sister gave a lesson in church today, blending LDS missionary work and motherhood together. She asked for my feelings on the subject, and so we begin—

It was a brilliant summer day, and we were both busy at work in the kitchen~I was kneading bread while Ashton hammered the pegs into the little playschool workbench. Hammer, bam, crash, crack, bang.

“Mom, when I go on a mission...” he lisped—and we spoke of when and where and what it would be like. Then I heard the telltale break in his baby boy voice as he realized what he was saying—the weight behind the future plans. Suddenly it was more than he could bear. “Mom! I don’t want to go! I don’t want to leave you! I want to stay here and be little! Do I have to go? Do I?” And he bowed his head over his knees and wept. I scooped him up into my mother’s arms and told him a lie...but I knew better. I knew that there would come a day when he would want to go...when he did want to leave me...when he would move away from home as a young man, to be about his Father’s business.

The boy turned 14. He had just finished building and detonating a bomb. He had his cell phone taken away weekly. He refused to floss between his braces and had eye boogers and mouth corner mustard on a consistent basis. We weren’t sure if he was going to live past the age of 15—it was iffy at best. We walked up a dirt trail on our way to Youth Conference testimony meeting—I was there as a leader, and I didn’t know it at the time, but he was there as a leader, too. He spoke of Joseph Smith~his same age~being willing to die for this Gospel and his God. Then he fervently declared that, if it were asked of him, he would do the very. same. thing. And he bowed his head over his folded arms, and wept.

He grew strong and handsome—became a slave to fashion and an admirer of beautiful women. He was elected Student Body President, lettered in Debate, tutored special needs peers and figured out just in time, how to be a friend to his siblings. All of this was intermixed with Come To Jesus scoldings, “What in tarnation were you THINKING?” and a heavy dose of believing the Earth’s axis went directly through him.

We raised the bar. And he ducked under it.

We raised the bar. And he tripped over it.

We raised the bar. And he backed up, gathered up his noble spirit and running with all his might, flung himself to the heavens and catapulted over the bar, soaring to the highest heights! We stood on the sidelines and watched with mouths gaping. And we bowed our heads on each other’s shoulders and wept.

He was called to Florianopolis, Brazil, leaving one week before Christmas. He and his very best friends strengthened and brought each other unto Christ, and then departed within months of each other, to bring even more souls unto Christ. Stripling Warriors, these young men. I received the long awaited letter the very first week he lived at the Missionary Training Center. “Mother, I love you so have no idea. And you were right. About everything. I am just now beginning to see it all. Thank you.”

I’ve placed him in his own little section of my heart as a necessity. I only check in every week, and only for a short while, as I read his letter and write him mine. It’s the only way to survive the gaping hole that is exactly his shape and size. But just last week, I was checking through my wallet during sacrament meeting, and pulled out Ashton’s missionary picture. I touched the one dimensional face, then handed it to my husband whispering, “Remember him?” He poignantly stared at the image, then whispered back, “He’s still ours, you know. We get him back.” And we looked into each others eyes and smiled.

And I know that within a few short months, there will be a young man, sweltering in the brilliant Brazilian sunlight, hammering away at the work. Scriptures in his hand, a tool in the Lord’s. Hammer, bam, crash, crack, bang. The letter will arrive and his voice will crack and echos from the past will take on a different meaning, “Lord! I don’t want to go! I don’t want to leave these people! I want to stay here and continue to grow big! Do I have to go? Do I?” And he will bow his head over his two year sacrifice and weep.

But the work will go on. Because some other courageous mother stands at her kitchen counter, kneading bread and talking of when...and where...and preparation for her own Stripling Warrior to go to battle—to be about his Father’s business.

And he will not doubt it, because his mother tells him it is so.