"I don't want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully, tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with long, perfectly manicured fingernails. I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking kids to scout camp. I want to be there with a smudge of peanut butter on my shirt from making sandwiches for a sick neighbors children. I want to be there with a little dirt under my fingernails from helping to weed someone's garden. I want to be there with children's sticky kisses on my cheeks and the tears of a friend on my shoulder. I want the Lord to know I was really here and that I really lived."
Marjorie Pay Hinckley

Monday, March 31, 2008


We bought a box of LIFE cereal this last week, and it has resulted in some pretty funny comments. Some examples are:
1. "Mom! You're stepping on my life!"
2. "My life is soggy. I need a new one."
3. "Mom! Tyler took my life!"
4. "Can I take Tyler's life?"
5. "This life is soooo good"

Friday, March 28, 2008


I have to admit something. I LOVE to read everyone's "tagged" posts and always learn so much about the person, but I have NEVER done one myself. I had no desire at all! But, after a night out with some good friends, I came to the conclusion that it was, indeed, my turn to be embarrassed and provide entertainment for everyone else. Sooooo, here we go with 100 things about me!

1. I love to learn and try new things! It's exciting!
2. I am a yellow/blue personality. 80 percent yellow, 20 percent blue and NO other colors!
3. I like ALL foods. I really can't think of anything I don't like....that can be both good and bad!
4. I learned to play 12 instruments in high school.
5. I won the state geography bee in 8th grade.
6. I have a hard time keeping a schedule! For instance...
7. If I plan to do laundry that day and someone calls and asks if I want to go to the park I say, "Sure!!" and wave at my laundry as I walk out the door.
8. I love to play games. I especially like a good strategy game.
9. I danced in front of a live audience on the Oprah stage. I even sat in her chair!
10. I DO NOT and CAN NOT dance.
11. I glued my 4th grade teacher to her chair with super glue.
12. My 4th grade teacher's name is Mrs. Crab. We used to call her Mrs. Lobster.
13. I wrote a couple of articles for the New Era.
14. I wrote a story about an embarrassing moment I had and sent it to reader's digest and won a prize!
15. I owned and operated a restaurant when I was 18.
16. I have had 40 employees, half of which were older than me at the time.
17. I would never do that again!
18. I hid a cat in my dorm room for 5 months without my R.A. knowing. Funny thing is I don't like cats!
19. I can breath in through my nose and out through my mouth at the same time.
20. I have been diagnosed with Narcolepsy!
21. When I was in high school my friends and I toilet papered my own house and left an anonymous note for my sister. When my family woke up the next day and saw the note, they made her clean it all up.
22. In 2nd grade I cut a classmate's ponytail off with scissors because she wouldn't pass the glue. I have repented and we, to this day, are still really good friends.
23. I sucked my thumb until I was 8! (JoAnna, you are not the only one!)
24. I LOVE to clean!
25. I love having a clean clutter-free house.
26. I HATE cleaning the microwave! Yuck!
27. I would rather do the dishes and load the dishwasher than unload it and put them all away.
28. I love receiving mail, including emails!
29. I love a good email forward. Especially the funny ones! Send them! Please!
30. I love spicy food. Really really spicy food. The kind that makes your nose water! YUMMM
31. I get really really sick during the 9 months of pregnancy.
32. I have home health nurses, Picc lines, and extended hospital stays when I'm pregnant. Still, to this day, I can NOT drink any type of fluid before noon.
33. I still want at least one more kiddo.
34. I taught water aerobic when we lived in Milwaukee.
35. I HATE swimsuits.
36. I don't enjoy swimming!
37. I worked at a flower shop for 3 years.
38. I do not like baby's breath (the flower. But now that I think about it, I really don't like my baby's breath either!)
39. Ryan always jokes that if one of our kiddos fell into some type of hot liquid that he would of course save them, but he would hesitate for one small second and wonder if I should be the one to save them due to the fact that I.....
40. LOVE to take HOT showers. Scalding!
41. My feet are always cold.
42. Both my husband and I are the oldest of 4 kids: two sisters and a brother!
43. My husband is my very best friend.
44. After a long and hard day of hearing my (then) colicky daughter scream in her car seat during needed errands, I put a handful of snow on her face! She stopped screaming!
45. I play with my kids toys after they go to sleep.
46. I bite my nails. I know I know. I'm trying to stop.
47. I love to put food coloring in my pancakes and make funny shapes.
48. I would love to learn how to make stain glass windows!
49. I took a job as a valet attendant for 4 months, but didn't have a clue how to drive a stick shift! I learned on other people's cars when they weren't looking!
50. I HATE HATE HATE the feeling of wet hands on cardboard or dry paper towels. It makes me get goose bumps just thinking about it!
51. I was on the state student council when I was a senior in High School.
52. I've been to 22 different countries and 40 states
53. I love to see new places.
54. My parents have two large framed maps in the basement of their home. One is a map of the USA and one is a map of the world. As kids we would put a special map pin in the maps when we'd visit a new place. It's fun to see where everyone has been! The only requirement there was to be able to put a pin in the map was that we had to spend the night at the location.
55. Ryan and I received a call to serve as temple workers in the chicago LDS temple on spanish night!
56. I don't know any spanish.
57. I take that back. The only spanish I have learned/memorized I can not use or say in public!
58. I am a stylist for Layers clothing.
59. I love cheese. Especially when it's melted!
60. I love being a mom!!!
61. Being a mom is the hardest thing I have ever done!
62. I love seeing my hubby's eyes light up with excitement when he tells me what he did that day at work (despite the 30+ hour shift at the hospital with no sleep)
63. My kiddos favorite place to visit in Rochester is our bank. They love the freshly baked cookies they always give us.
64. I love it when people make my kids laugh.
65. I really really love to cook and try new recipes!
67. Am I boring you yet?
67. I love the look on my kiddos faces when they discover something new.
68. I love to make things with my hands and always have some type of project I'm working on.
69. I love to sew!
69. I reupholstered our living room set.
70. A pet peeve of mine is when I see the registration stickers on people's license plates ALL OVER the plates rather than where they're suppose to go; one on top of the other. Has anyone else noticed this or is it just me??
71. For date nights Ryan and I sometimes dust off and play our old nintendo 64 and sega genesis. Go mario cart!
72. I am completely awful with names.
73. I was an EFY counselor for 2 years. That's where I met Ryan!
74. I fell out of a 3 story window when I was 3 years old.
75. I LOVE home made ginger snaps. Especially when they are soft in the inside!
76. This is probably way too much information than you probably ever wanted to know!
77. I am reading the book "Bonds that make us free" right now. LOVE IT!
78. I just started an herb garden in my kitchen.
79. I could eat Mexican food everyday.
80. I'll fold them, sort them, clean them, wear them, but I hate to buy and spend money on socks!
81. I need to go grocery shopping.
82. I love to make Ryan laugh.
83. I really enjoy watching those crazy nature shows on TV.
84. I don't really like watching movies, especially if I don't know anything about them.
85. I wrote a song for Ryan.
86. I love to find money in my pockets or on the ground. Unfortunately it hardly ever happens!
87. I had a pet rock growing up. I named him dead.
88. I am excited I am almost done with this list!
89. I have never touched a cow.
90. My husband and I "flipped" a property during his second year of Medical school. When we bought it, we didn't even own a hammer! In the end, we made enough money to buy our second car.
91. I keep forgetting Ryan's a doctor. A couple of months ago while flying to visit family, one of the flight attendant's went on the PA and asked if there was a doctor on the flight. The person sitting next to me (Ryan and I had to be split up on this particular flight due to over booking) leaned over and said, "I wonder if there is a doctor on the flight?" and I responded, "I do too!" It wasn't until a good 5 seconds passed and I saw Ryan walking down the isle that I said "Oh wait! My husband's a doctor!"
92. I love to see my husband play with the kids.
93. It doesn't happen that often, but I love it when my kids take a nap/rest time at the same time!
94. I LOVED serving in the Milwaukee city branch.
95. I get home sick for it some days.
96. I'm running out of random things to say.
97. I enjoy blogging, but get frustrated that I have to update it so often.
98. I've learned a lot about people from reading their blogs!
99. I don't think I'm ever going to respond to a "tagged" again! You probably don't want me to either!!!!! :)
100. I love it when people respond to my blog posts!

Ta da! We both made it!

Thursday, March 20, 2008


Today is such a beautiful day! It's above freezing and the snow is starting to melt! HURRAY! Ryan and I packed up the kiddos and went for a little walk/bike ride outside. Kamrie LOVED being able to ride her bike on the first. And then it turned into a game of riding her bike on the sidewalk through glacier water puddles. And then it turned into stopping the bike in the deepest part of the puddles so she could put her feet down and splash in the water. It wasn't long before she got rid of the bike all together and just went straight for the puddles. Here are a few pictures of our adventurous-water lovin' Kamrie doing her thing.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

To Be Like A Child

As a kid, I remember the thrill of dumping all of my toys onto the floor. I loved the sound they made as they crashed, and I loved to watch the way they scattered all around the room.
I remember putting olives on every finger and eating them one by one!
I also remember the times that I would sit at the table and pretend to cook. I even made up my own "recipes"! ;)

As a mom, I've recently been re-experiencing these moments through my children, but the feelings, on occasion, have been quite different than those of my childhood memories.  On those days when it seems the contents of every shelf and drawer in the house have been dumped on the floor, I feel so frustrated. Cooking sometimes feels more like a hassle than a creative outlet, especially when my kiddos pick out all of the olives and eat nothing else! :) What happened over these last few years that made such a drastic switch in my outlook? Why am I now bothered by some of the things that used to bring me joy?

During a recent family home evening, I ran across this picture I had seen dozens of times, but this time it really impacted me.   It is a picture of Mary and Martha with the Savior. As I thought about their story, and the lesson Jesus so lovingly taught about doing the needful thing, the Spirit helped me realize why I've been frustrated.
There are days I feel so busy cleaning and tending to the needs of others that I lose sight of what is most important. As Jesus said: "Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things, but one thing is needful; and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her."
This simple picture now hangs in my kitchen reminding me of this valuable lesson.  Our home might not always be spotless, and we may occasionally eat cold cereal or leftovers for dinner, but my kids will be kids, and that is the "good part."