Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Upon re-reading my "Desperate Housewife" post, I feel the need to specify that the singing was done in the car, not in CVS. I see how it could be read otherwise.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Embrace Life Seatbelt Ad

I am so thankful that my mom was as diligent as she was in teaching my sister and I to always wear our seatbelts. When I get in the car, I just do it. I wouldn't ride in a car without a seatbelt any sooner than I would walk outside without any pants on. This is something Forrest and I constantly debate (the seatbelt, not the pants.) He remembers the days of cruising back roads in the back of his dad's pick-up truck, and feels that the seatbelt law is just another form of Nanny government. Don't get me started on just how badly I disagree with him on this. They say that the impact of even a 30 mph car crash is equivalent to falling from the roof of a three story building(according to Newton's Law.) As for my kids, they will be taught to always wear their seatbelts. I have to win this one.

Friday, August 27, 2010

A Friday Night in the Day-of-the-Life of a Homeschooling Mother of Five (a.k.a "Desperate Housewife")

So it wasn't until 9:30 pm that I was able to leave the house today. My destination? To get toilet paper. Yes, toilet paper (exciting, I know.) My day consisted of getting everyone up and ready, homeschooling from 8:00 until 1:00, followed by the correcting of papers and recording in learning logs, the sorting (and almost washing) of four loads of laundry, detailing the Lincoln, feeding the missionaries, going for a four mile run, and seeing to it that the kids were all tucked in their beds upon my return. All of this found me down the aisle of the nearest CVS Pharmacy at 9:30 at night, armed with my package of toilet paper, checking out the cosmetics and spraying myself with perfume samples. After all, I couldn't only be going out for toilet paper. Who does that on a Friday night? But perhaps it was the belting out of the lyrics to Anna Nalick's "Breathe" that really made my night. Now there's some soul music... and I smelled good. I even passed up my street on the way home so I could finish the song. A depiction of a desperate housewife? I think so.


Okay, so I have bowed to social pressure and here I am. As much as I hate to admit it, blogging is and has been the greater part of my social existence, and I am just not willing to part with that. It is the very fact that I am protesting, but if you can't beat 'em, might as well join 'em. I have experienced many fun times, family outings, milestones and good recipes lately and I am afraid they will keep running around in my head until I get them out. So, I'll start with this:

I have been published in a birth book.

It's nothing you haven't read on my blog, and I have yet to read the book myself, but if you are like me and can't get enough of reading the beautiful birth stories of other women, click on the link and order yourself a copy. Here is an excerpt from Tara:

No more powerful transformation is available to a woman than that of the unhinderd birth of her child. As a woman’s body opens to the life of her baby, so too is she opened to the rawness and beauty of woman-hood. At the culmination of an unhindered birth, a woman is left with an increased sense of strength and confidence as a woman and a mother.

This often fearful and dreaded event of childbirth is largely misunderstood and shrouded in mystery. The harmful routines and common procedures performed during pregnancy, labor and birth more often than not strip the mother of her ability and right to birth spontaneously and with the joy and love possible.

By lessening fear and increasing awareness, a woman is able to come through her journey of childbirth as a new and stronger woman and mother. Birth Unhindered will help increase confidence, peace and acceptance of this transformative time in life as well as allow the reader to participate in the journeys of other women just like her.

Other happenings:

*Rachel is 6 months old today and very near to cutting her first teeth. We still wake up at night, which is okay because I am learning to let go of the "notion" of a full night's sleep. Knowing I am on the tail end of my child bearing years, I wish to do nothing to rush this time. Some of the sweetest moments occur in the middle of the night when I lift her half-asleep from her crib and bring her into the warmth of my own bed to have her curl her little body into mine and nurse.

*We have successfully completed our first week of homeschooling. We held a family home evening mid-week on establishing the rules and expectations of our homeschool, which seems to have helped to get us off on a good start. Helpful too are the commitments I have made to myself in regards to what I will hold myself accountable for as their teacher. For example: "Recognize signs of burnout and be willing to adapt."

*In accordance with my resolve to healthier eating, I came across the best banana and zucchinni bread recipes. Both use 100% whole-wheat flour (freshly ground in my case,) coconut oil, and are sweetened with pure maple syrup and honey in lieu of sugar. If you are like me and try to find a way to sneak chocolate into as many foodstuffs as possible, you can throw in a bag of Ghirardelli 60% cacao chocolate chips. Oh, and don't forget the addition of Mexican vanilla, an ingredient who's taste is out-of-this-world. It has revolutionized my baking (thank you Tiffany!) Who knew healthy could be so decadent?

*Our trip to Icehouse this previous weekend provided Forrest with more than the usual campfire story to tell He got more than he bargained for when a 500 lb black bear came creeping past within arm's reach. I knew exactly what it was when I awoke to the sound of it running past my side of the tent. I tried to tell him it was harmless and only out for our food, but he slept with his buck knife in hand for the rest of the trip. Note to all: there are bears at Icehouse!

As far as my blog goes, I still will have it published one day. It will just be a little more expensive by then.

(Who was I to think I'd have time for scrapbooking with five kids, anyways?)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Signing Off

Well, I think it's about time to retire the ol' blog. The plan is to bring it to a close, have it published via blogstobooks.com, and turn my efforts back to scrapbooking and journaling (which were always much more rewarding anyway, in an intrinsic way.)

I am a big believer of de-cluttering, both temporally and spiritually, and through a little bit of soul-searching I have come to realize that blogging is one of the things that needs to go (along with late nights and eating sugar.) I never have been a fan of the computer (or any type of media-technology in general... it's just the way I am) and lately blogging has found me in front of the screen more often than I would like.

I am going back to my roots- focusing on home, family, and well-being. With a new homeschooling year about to begin I figure I really shouldn't have any "spare" time to spend on the computer anyway, and I think it will be better that way.

So, it's been fun. Thanks for all the good memories, and adieu!

I feel better already.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


One of Forrest's sisters is in town from Texas, so after a long weekend of camping we headed over to Tommy and Vera's house for a family dinner. Despite how tired we all were, it was well worth it to see everyone and enjoy Vera's delicious cooking! Here are most (but not all) of the girls:
... and some (but not nearly all) of the boys:
... and me and my baby girl.
There is a funny story behind this picture. We asked a couple walking by to take this shot (so we could all be in it) and then proceeded to give them our cameras (about 4 in all.) As we are standing there waiting patiently for a picture to be taken with each of the cameras, Jeff says, "I don't recognize the camera in that man's hand, who's is it?" Janean and I look and notice that he has pulled out his own video camera and is taping us! "What the heck is he doing?" we wonder out loud. He was a foreigner and seemed oblivious of any wrongdoing. Janean and I, on the other hand, couldn't stop cracking up. So there you have it. What will he do with that footage? We will never know.

Wright's Lake

This past weekend we took a trip to Wright's Lake. It was our first time being, and we lucked out with the perfect camp site. I made reservations online so there was no way of knowing what we were going to get, but our spot ended up being secluded, private, and totally beautiful. The kids had miles of open wilderness to explore, and they loved it. We couldn't hear or see any of our neighbors.

Here's Forrest in the kitchen frying up some bacon. Food always tastes so good when it's eaten outdoors!
The kids had a blast playing on the inflatables. Ashlee and Jacob actually took this raft all the way across the lake by themselves.
This is what our campsite opened up to: total wilderness. It was beautiful.
The classic roasting of marshmallows. It did get pretty chilly at night, making it hard to leave the warmth of the campfire and retire to the cold tent.
I had never seen so clear and beautiful a lake, and the backdrop was amazing. The water was the perfect swimming temperature.
The next day Forrest took the three oldest kids on a hike while the little girls and I stayed back at the campsite and took a nap. They hiked towards Desolation and came across this rocky plateau where they were able to get a 360 degree view of the wilderness. He said they went about 6 miles in all, which is why everyone came back to the camp famished and ready for dinner! That hike was probably the best part of the trip, though.