It’s the little things

I’m grateful for my kids. They make me smile.

I’m grateful for their friends, who keep them busy and happy.

I’m thankful for the parents of their friends who help me out when needed.

I’m thankful for my husband, who stayed home with the kids tonight while I went to an Enrichment meeting at church. He even watched animé with the girls.

I’m thankful for my church and the members in my ward. I’m thankful I came home from Enrichment tonight with three typed pages of book suggestions.

I’m thankful for books. And authors. And the time I can sneak off and read.

I’m thankful for friends who are supportive and give me rides and work together with me to carpool. New friends and old.

I’m thankful for a job that pays pretty well and keeps me busy.

I’m thankful that my middle daughter was able to be a good conversationalist with the enrollment guy at the private school. I’m thankful that it looks like we will be able to send her there. I hope.


Still tired

I don’t foresee this changing any time soon. I had a long day at work and then came home to a busy time before the girls left with their dad, then more busy-ness while The Chosen One and I tried to finish putting together the pantry. But when we put the doors on the drawers won’t open. Oops!

Today I’m feeling very grateful for my relative good health and that of my girls.

I’m also feeling strong promptings to pray for my brother & sister-in-law and their baby today. I hope everything is ok with them.

In other news I’m tired.

Hufflepuff not speaking until the end of school went well. She had a rainbow ribbon and a rainbow bracelet that says something about everyone having a voice. One boy tried to hassle her and make her talk. He did it right in front of a teacher and got sent straight to the office! I’m very impressed with her school right now. And with her. I hope she keeps learning to advocate for herself in general, but this was one specific type of advocacy that is important to her, and I’m proud of her for that.

We watched HGTV’s smart house show tonight. So cool! There are definitely things we want to integrate into our house, but other things that we didn’t like. The rooms felt really small, and I don’t understand using white upholstery on chairs in the dining room. Hunh? And they said people don’t use dining rooms. Really? Everyone I know does. But, I know Mormons. And people who cook all the time. Maybe that’s the difference?

It also annoyed me that there was a TV in every room. Including the shower. WTF? Can’t we have screen-free zones?

So tired now. Must sleep. And we kept The Chosen One up past his bedtime. Oops.

Tomorrow is Gryffindor’s scholarship interview. Ravenclaw is going to a friend’s house because The Chosen One is at the office, and she’d rather not be home alone with Hufflepuff. :)


I am very tired

Today in bullet points:

  • The Chosen One and I got 4 out of 10 drawers installed in the pantry
  • There are 2 drawers put together and ready to go once the rails are installed
  • I made cookies. They are good.
  • Ravenclaw and her friend M made muffins without supervision. They are good.
  • The muffins have fluff and chocolate chips, so I don’t know how they could be bad.
  • Tomorrow Hufflepuff is having a day of silence for LGBTQ youth
  • B is sleeping here tonight
  • Dinner was enchiladas, rice, and beans, and was very good.
  • Gryffindor misremembered how much homework she had. Note to self- double check her memory
  • Hufflepuff threw a fit about going to YW tonight, but had fun once she got there. Score 1 for me.
  • Gryffindor had a good time, too. And came home with extra pancakes.
  • I have no idea what Ravenclaw did at Achievement Night.
  • I am jealous that The Chosen One can go to bed whenever he wants. Only 8 more years ’til the girls are gone and I can do that!
  • I am sleepy now.

That is all


The one in which a good night turns bad

So, my father and step-mother came over to “picnic” and bring us food from a new restaurant in town. It’s a Vietnamese restaurant with almost a completely gluten-free menu. If you’re local it’s called Soall Bistro.

It was delicious. Seriously. I want to eat the lemongrass shrimp all the time. And all of the girls finished all of their food. I was mightily impressed – usually Gryffindor is picky about Asian food, but she loved her lemongrass tofu. And Ravenclaw’s ribs looked divine. The Chosen One was kinda screwed by getting just some chicken since he didn’t get rice or vermicelli with his food, but that was really the only negative about the food.

Unfortunately my kids then acted like crazy obnoxious brats. They were laying down on each other, punching each other, sitting in my lap and acting exhausted… it was seriously annoying in a major way. I am completely fed up with this. I have laid down the law – first punching and you lose all electronics for an hour. Second incident you lose them for the rest of the day. I need them to be able to behave. They’re 10, 13, and 15, and they should be able to interact with humanity without going insane. Ugh! This has gotten worse and worse over the past few weeks, and now I’m mortified. :(

The day before this was good, Ravenclaw had her audition, which seemed to go well, and then she brought two friends home. They had fun talking about anime. Yay. Gryffindor hung out with herself and Hufflepuff locked herself in her room with her Skype friends.

Right now I’m fed up with everyone, so I should go to sleep and pray that the night of sleep grants me an attitude adjustment.


I’m learning a lot

And that’s in a real way. Not the “another freaking growth opportunity” way.

Church was good, and the class I was teaching seemed to go well, despite me forgetting my handouts (including Jacob’s 12 sons’ names) on the breakfast bar. Oops! Gryffindor is the president of her class (the Beehives) for another couple months until she graduates out of the class, so every 2nd Sunday she’s in a meeting for an hour after church. Ugh. Ravenclaw and I had some fun, though chatting with other people who were also stuck there and then nomming on snacks that were there for Relief Society. Hufflepuff had gone with us to church but snagged a ride home from my friend S.

On our way home we picked up Ravenclaw’s friend K. They are auditioning for the “4th grade solos and duets recital” tomorrow. I loathe these concerts. But, I will say, they sounded quite good practicing today. Maybe their concert won’t be as bad as the ones Gryffindor was in (though she sounded really good practicing, too. It’s all the other people that make me cringe). I did learn a lot about the new Taylor Swift song “Eyes Open” from the Hunger Games. I also learned that all of my kids can read music, and they think I’m an idiot for not understanding it. They don’t understand how I could have graduated and passed music classes not knowing this. I’m very grateful for the music program in our schools.

Later, while helping with homework, I learned far more than I ever thought I’d need to know about Bighorn Sheep. Ravenclaw is making a book about them. They’re not all that exciting (unlike the pikas that Gryffindor researched that year), but they are cooler than regular sheep. Gryffindor was doing homework on the computer, too, but hers was a powerpoint about Rafael Nadal, the Spanish tennis player. The Chosen One knew all about him. Gryffindor was impressed, as she knows little to nothing about anything sporty.

In other news The Chosen One and I figured out how to set up the pantries, and they’re all there ready for drawers and doors. I’m so excited! I’ll be able to actually put away all our food! Yay!!

My friend S, her daughter M, and her husband T came to visit us, and we had a nice little visit. They even brought us cookies! :) We had a nice little chat and we talked about a parable regarding anchors for boats, and things in life that anchor you that are good things (and things that weigh you down that aren’t good things, too). It was a nice chat.

And now it’s time for sleep again. Yay!


Memories and making more

One year ago today we were in Orlando at Harry Potter World. We went for dinner at the Three Broomsticks, had butter beer, and The Chosen One proposed to me! Squee!

Today was less exciting, but we did make more memories. I drove for 4 hours (taking Hufflepuff and her friend to horseback riding, then going grocery shopping, taking a quick nap, and then going back to pick Hufflepuff up from horseback riding again. Ugh.). I ended up feeling irritable after all the driving, but we had all agreed to go to see Rio 2 tonight, and I needed to get out of the bad mood and go see that.

We had gone about 3 years ago to Rio 1. My friend J had just lost her husband to lung cancer, and we met up with her and her two sons at a movie theater and then went out to eat at Rainforest Cafe. It was great, we laughed so hard at the movie! It was so cute! And it brought back so many good memories to see the sequel.

Overall the second one was a lot of fun. We were almost the only ones in the theater, and it’s so comfortable! Awesome. I got to hold my sweetie’s hand, too. The kids ditched us and sat away from us, but we coped. I like having my husband as my movie buddy! :) And I love making new memories and adding on to old memories!


Friday night fun

So, after work today I met with the people at St. Mary’s, the school where Gryffindor wants to attend high school. It looks like they might be able to help her attend, they just want to meet with her. We’re going to cross our fingers that the meeting goes well.

We need to work on the girls telling The Chosen One where they’re going if I’m not home. It’s not a good idea for them to leave without telling him. Just as a thought. But once I brought home Ravenclaw she and I and Gryffindor found the bedding they want for their room. And then their dad came for them.

Then I passed out for a little while.

But tonight was date night for me and The Chosen One! Dinner from Qdoba and an episode of Psych (we’re several behind). It was lovely and just like the old days!

Now sleep because I have to drive Hufflepuff to horseback riding in the morning. Yay.


Back to the mines

And another day of work and life passes. Today was much quieter than last Tuesday, and felt much more fulfilling, but there’s still a sense of drudgery with work. And with they girls’ school. Blah. It also felt weird that The Chosen One had left for work before I woke up. And I woke up at 6:15. Disconcerting.

After getting everyone to school in the rain (and not finding my good rain coat), work went fine. I picked up Ravenclaw and her friend C from school today because I had promised to pick up Hufflepuff. And somehow I forgot that it was Tuesday so she had a meeting after school. Oops!

Anyhow, Ravenclaw had fun showing off the house to C (whose sister has been here a couple times but she hadn’t). They went outside to play for a while and then rode bikes around. It’s so nice to live in a house with a yard (!!) and on a quiet street where they could just ride around without me worrying!

I made a yummy lentil soup while they rode bikes and played. I was the only one to eat it (though I did give some to our friend M when she came to pick up the girls). The rest of the meal I made was scarfed down, it was just the lentil soup that was ignored. Ah well, I had expected it.

I got about 40% of my book club book read tonight while the girls were at their church activities. It meant I didn’t get some other things done, but there will always be more to do.

The Chosen One and I had a nice time watching half of an Addams Family episode. I look forward to watching the rest of it! Maybe after the girls go with their dad tomorrow… It was frustrating that they came home from church in the middle of the episode! But homework does need to take precedence.

Now for me to get back to the book I don’t like and then sleep. Sleep good.


Another stellar day

It was so nice to wake up in our house with my husband, knowing that he was working from home that day. It’s wonderful that he can work from home three days a week! So grateful for that!

Meanwhile, after dropping the girls off at school I came back to get my stuff packed up and the trash & recycling put up (at the old house trash & recycling were picked up on Tuesday, I’m still not used to having it picked up on Mondays). And then I went to Hufflepuff’s IEP meeting.

Her father was there. Which surprised me. It was a lot of fun to sit there while she doesn’t want to talk to him, but he keeps trying to talk to her. I was telling her to be polite, but that’s as good as she could do. I wanted to hit him when he said he wanted her in all “normal” classes. Ugh. And then also insisting that she should be taking Spanish.

On the plus side, we basically ignored him, and I got what Hufflepuff and I wanted. She’ll be mainstreamed for next year in a College Prep English class, with curriculum support periods and other supports while she’s in the non-Language Based English class. Here’s hoping it goes well.

Work went well.

After work I came home and was doing laundry, then came up the stairs from the basement laundry area. When I got to the top of the stairs Yuki (the cat) raced up the stairs, passed me, and jumped into the front window. Only a moment later Ravenclaw and her friend passed the window! Wow! That was freaky! I’ll admit that I think my cat is awesome and part dog (she regularly follows me from room to room and greets me at the door), but this was very cool.

Then we had an orthodontist appointment for the older 2. Yay. They are grouchy. I bought them off with McDonalds shakes and Happy Meal toys (it’s still MLP time) while I went grocery shopping for soft foods.

I was irritable when we got home – some noise that Ravenclaw was playing in the car made my headache peak badly. Ow.

We did have FHE tonight, though. We did a quick song, prayer, and chat about treating other people’s property nicely, and then played Family Fluxx. I love that game! I need to get more versions, though. Hufflepuff tantrummed and left the game, but I made her come back. Of course she had “things to do”, but some things in our family are non-negotiable, and FHE and family meals are two of them.

I got some nice cuddle time with my husband before finishing packing lunches and getting everything ready for tomorrow. Now to sleep, and read a bit more of the book for book club which I am not loving. Maybe my attitude will change as I read more.


Kindness and irritation

General Conference – irritably parenting while listening to messages of peace and kindness twice a year. For 8 hours each time.

Yesterday’s highlights (since I have my notepad upstairs):

  • Defending your faith requires courage and courtesy
  • The road leading to the promised land is rough
  • We are the Lord’s hands here upon the earth (so do service)
  • May we all find joy in bearing one another’s burdens
  • You are infinitely more precious to Heavenly Father than a tree
  • Spiritual whirlwinds will try to uproot you. The worst whirlwinds are the temptations of the adversary.
  • Families are the treasures of heaven
  • Everyone deserves our kindness and compassion
  • Let the Lord be the leader of your family

Great messages today. We watched the Saturday afternoon session recording, then watched the Sunday morning session somewhat live (we were about 20 minutes behind reality), and finally watched the Sunday afternoon session as it was being broadcast. Note to self – playing it as Airplay from the BYUtv app on the iPad works *beautifully*! So much better than the session we watched on the computer while working on the girls’ rooms.

Great quotes I have in my notes:

  • 50 Million People Can Be Wrong
  • Loving people is a powerful influence (and if Elder Scott can become an Apostle with a non-member father and a less-active mother, then we all have opportunities available to us)
  • Be careful who you follow
  • We must be compassionate even when we disagree
  • Don’t wait for the rainbow to be grateful for the rain
  • There are no true endings, but everlasting beginnings
  • Our mortal life is like the 4 minutes of an Olympic performance – we worked towards it before and will have eternity afterwards. Steer your course
  • It’s never too late for repentance.
  • Share your burdens and they will be made light
  • Blame keeps wounds open, only forgiveness heals
  • Parenting is a sacred blessing
  • Live true to the faith
  • Heaven is being surrounded by family
  • Obedience is a choice between our limited knowledge and God’s unlimited omniscience
  • The family is the pattern of heaven
  • Where your treasure is, your heart is
  • Faith gives you hope in tragedy and calamity
  • One should not roam through garbage

The prophet left us with the thought “May our homes be filled with love and courtesy”. He also reminded us to be kind to others who do not share our faith, and to put our faith and trust in the Lord.

After that the kids went nuts a little, I made dinner (Taco Sunday doesn’t have the same ring to it as Taco Tuesday), and then we all watched Frozen. I think The Chosen One really liked it! We loved it. Hufflepuff and then Gryffindor ditched us after “Let it go”, but Ravenclaw and I loved watching it again. I’m glad we bought it.

The Chosen One really accomplished a lot in organizing the mudroom until we can get the pantries set up. I put up a skinny bookshelf in the family room and put the DVDs on it. It looks good. Hufflepuff put up her bookshelf. I hung curtains in both girls’ rooms. I tried to hang the other shelves, but we need help for that. We did put up the giant My Little Pony decals, though, and they look great! So fun!