Tuesday, October 30, 2007

*muttering under breath* stupid computer

Last night as I was dinking around on my computer I hit the "next blog" tab at the top of the page, just curious about other blogs. Well, I happened to get a really bad one. DON'T HIT THAT BUTTON!!!!!!

My computer has crashed big time, full of some kind of virus or spyware or parasite, and until it's cleared off, it's just a pile of crap taking up space on my desk. So, you'll have to wait for more past-halloween pictures, because I can't get them off.

Happily, Brent's old Mac Book is just sitting around so I'm on that right now. It's not all peaches and cream, however, because the hard drive is failing. Gah! Okay, so tomorrow with Brent's latest paycheck, we're going to purchase a new hard drive and all the software needed to get the Mac working and it's going to be mine permanently. Then on Saturday we're going to spend some quality time with a very generous friend of mine. She volunteered her husband, who is a Dell laptop support guy, to fix my computer. He's already done it once. I'll have to think of something really nice to do for them because this is a big deal. If we can get all my pictures and personal files off, then I'll call it a wash.

Sheesh. Computers are stinky sometimes, but I really really really hate people who create viruses just to mess with people. I'd love to unleash the full fury of Chuck Norris or Jackie Chan on their butts for being so dang inconsiderate.

Anyway, I hope to upload pictures soon. Really. I got some cute ones of Felix tonight covered in cereal. I don't know why it's so cute for babies to be so messy. But it is!

Monday, October 29, 2007

another old Halloween costume

I actually found a bunch of old costume pictures, so I thought it would be fun to post them. One a day... or something like that. :)

I'm sure you can tell which one was me. This was a group from work about 8 years ago.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Halloween already?!

Disclaimer - this was me for a halloween party while I was a missionary in Italy. It was in 1995, when I was very thin (for me) and had really long hair. Can you tell I was being Pippi Longstocking? Italians don't know anything about Halloween, so it was a trip walking to the church for our party. Everyone stared at the girl with her hair sticking straight out! Good times...

Can anyone tell me where the past couple months have gone? I feel like I've been in a haze for a good long time, most likely because I'm seriously sleep deprived. I know that other women do it and it amazes me how many mothers there are out there who don't go insane with the lack of sleep that comes with motherhood.

Yesterday a good friend of ours hosted a halloween party. So true to form, on Friday I went and bought the supplies for our costumes. Actually, it was really just about Brent's costume because I got all sorts of lazy (and I was TIRED!!!) and decided to do something simple for mine. I found a really cute tiger costume for Felix a couple weeks ago, so we decided to be a lion, tiger, and bear. I was trying to figure out what would be easiest for me and Brent, and I spent some quality time at Wal-Mart.

While I was wandering around Wal-Mart, I found some fun slippers, and since Brent and I are due for new slippers, I thought that might be a fun way to enhance our costumes. They had lion slippers (you put your foot into the mouth), and big black fuzzy slippers with claws that I thought would make good bear feet.

Well, the slippers didn't work out (sizes), but I found some cheap gold flannel that I figured would make a good lion costume. I also found some cheap gold yarn that I thought could make a good mane.

Saturday morning I woke up nice and late and started working on the costume. I figured I could dress in all black and make a tail and some ears and be a bear. I grabbed a pair of Brent's pj pants and used them as a rough pattern for lion pants. And I used an old t-shirt as a pattern for the top. The mane gave me no end to trouble, so I didn't finish it. It was quite unfinished and I still have work on it before it looks like a lion's mane. I hot glued some cut-out ears to a headband and safety-pinned a tail on my bum for my costume. But as suspected, Felix was the star of the show.

It's gratifying to have people like him because he totally thrives on attention. We got back late and even had to stop on the way to change Felix's diaper because he was in pain. His poor diaper rash is finally making progress, but he's still spitting up a lot. At church today he tagged both me and Brent. Small price to pay for having such a cute kidlet.

This evening we talked my parents into watching Felix so we could take a nap. I woke up about an hour later, gave him a bottle and he fell asleep. He woke up about 15 minutes ago after about 2 hours asleep and I'm guessing he'll be awake and fussy for the next 3 or 4 hours. Fun.

Anyway, I'm happy to report that things are progressing. I'll put up a picture of us when it really is halloween. Hopefully I'll have our costumes finished by then.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

On the mend

Over the past couple of weeks I have decided a couple of things:

1. I adore having a husband that is willing to take care of the baby when I'm too tired.
2. Plastic dinnerware is lifesaving.
3. I miss fresh veggies when I'm sick.
4. I get sad when I can't comfort my baby.
5. I feel all sorts of warm and fuzzy inside when my baby sleeps on my husband's shoulder.
6. I am thankful almost every day for modern medicine that provides antibiotics and knowledge.
7. I love good pillows.
8. Showers feel awesome even when I don't feel like standing long enough to take one.
9. I like cheesy movies that I can recommend because there is nothing objectionable in them (Sydney White is really cute - a retelling of Snow White, it's Sydney White and the 7 Dorks).
10. Even though I don't enjoy texting, sometimes it's still easier to text when I don't feel like talking to someone.

I'm finally feeling mostly human again, but Felix is taking longer. Poor little bug. We haven't given him any acidopholus yet and I think he's having some stomach problems because of it. Little frustrations in the grand scheme of things, but I wish I were better equipped to comfort him and make him feel better. I hate seeing an infant suffer...

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Strep 2

Today I broke down and took Felix to the after-hours clinic. I wondered if the nasty-looking diaper rash and the rash around his face might be connected somehow and causing him enough discomfort to make him especially fussy lately.

It was worse than I thought. The diaper rash is a yeast infection so I got a prescription for nystantin. The doc checked Felix and he has no temperature and no big snot (dead giveaway for strep in infants), but he did have sores at the back of his throat. She recommended some 1% cortisone cream for the rash around his face (said it was probably the change of weather and his slobber) and said the nurse would let me know if the strep test was positive. It was.

The doc came back and prescribed amoxocillan for the strep and said to get some acidopholus for the yeast because apparently antibiotics are like a yeast magnet.

While I was at the pharmacy I asked the pharmacist about my giant headache that won't go away and about my cough, and he recommended some good cough suppressant and alternating between ibuprofen and Tylenol for the headache.

Felix fell asleep in the car and is sleeping now. I'm hoping he'll sleep for a while since he's been too uncomfortable to sleep for any significant time today. And Brent will pick up some drugs for us tonight. Hopefully that means that by tomorrow both Felix and I will finally feel some relief...

Strep Week

Last Friday (of last week) I suddenly felt all sorts of dizzy and weak so I went to lay down. I immediately started shivering uncontrollably and spent the next few hours under a bunch of blankets trying to sleep through the cold. Going back and forth between hot and cold flashes, my throat started hurting, and by Sunday morning I was certain it was strep. On Monday I went to the doctor and had it confirmed and got some antibiotics. And I started coughing.

I've been coughing madly for almost a week now and it's awful. I don't think I'm contagious for anything, but I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable. Apparently stuff is going around. I spoke to my sister-in-law who told me that one of her kids had strep and three others were acting suspicious. And I haven't seen them in about a month.

Last night Brent and I felt like we had to get out of the house, so we dropped the kidlet off at my sister's house and ran to catch a movie. I doubt if anyone has heard of it, but we saw Sydney White on the recommendation of Orson Scott Card. It was a modern retelling of the Snow White story and it was really cute. Very entertaining and it's clean. There was a scene at the end that I thought was kind of forced, but otherwise I really liked it.

Felix seems to get really bored with bottles lately. We've tried giving him a faster-flow nipple but he just chokes on the milk that comes out too fast. But he gets all sorts of frustrated with the slow-flow nipples we have. We've decided we need to find some medium-flow nipples. So we have started giving him things to chew on. We're not very careful and occasionally he does get things caught in his throat. He does especially well with carrot sticks (although he often sticks them down his throat too far and makes himself gag) and these teether biscuits we found at Macy's.

Just for the heck of it I gave him a cinnamon bear the other day. He liked that a lot and didn't seem to mind the spiciness of it. He just gummed it till it was slimy and he had red goo all over his tray and all over his face. He'd put the red thing back in his mouth for a bit and gum it and then spit it out (probably because it was hot) and start over. I also gave him some crackers and a green mint chip. By the time he was done everything was covered with red goo. I guess it's a good thing he likes baths.

He continues to entertain. He is fussy here ane there, but we're always hoping that he'll calm down and get back to his normal happiness, because normally he is just really happy. He smiles at everyone who smiles at him, and he's cheerful most of the time. Especially when he's getting attention. Of course, I'm a little like that myself so I can't begrudge him that reaction to people. :)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Truth and Honesty in the Voucher Debate.

Tonight, KSL (channel 5) did a
piece on the truthfulness
of the spate of ads for and against Utah's Referendum 1. They essentially looked at two ads for either side of the issue. With some caveats, the two that were pro-voucher (one with oreos, and one featuring Representative Rob Bishop) were factual, telling the truth as far as they went. One might take issue with what they did not say, but what they did say was true. Vouchers would increase funding per student in public schools.

On the other hand, the two that were anti-voucher were untrue on nearly every count. Everything that they said was either a distortion of the truth or completely untrue. That is, at least, according to this report by KSL's Eyewitness news.

If I didn't already know which way I'll be voting, this might have made up my mind for me.

Friday, October 12, 2007

I love my family

If you've known me or my family for a long time that's generally a big deal. My family settled about 16 years ago into life in Utah, and almost 12 years ago into their current house. By "my family" I mean my parents, although some of the kids settled in with them only to leave soon after to grown-up-hood.

As one cousin has dubbed us, we're the coolest family ever. I know she usually refers to her own flegling family in those terms, but it extends to us whether she likes it or not. :)

I come from a large Mormon family. One mom, one dad, 8 birth children and one adopted. Number 9 came into the family when she was already an adult so I often speak of her in separate terms, mostly just to note that the behavior of the 8 is the most identifiable because we grew up together.

Being a family that moved often, we all turned to each other for friendship. This has been a huge blessing in my life, and I'm sure my siblings would say the same. Not only are they my brothers and my sisters, but they are my friends.

I spoke in my "I love my friends" post about being able to make friends easily. That is true, but there is really more to it. See, I make friends easily, but it takes a lot of time and energy to make true friends. In all my life I can count my true friends on one hand. That doesn't mean I don't love the friends that aren't so deep, just that I don't know them well enough to be completely comfortable and 100% myself around them.

This is where the whole friend/family discussion comes in, because my family members are also true friends. Of course, I can't fit them all on one hand, but I don't have to. I have been blessed not only by super humongously amazing brothers and sisters, but also by amazing aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews, and in-laws that I count myself incredibly lucky to even associate with.

The difference between friends and family is that with family they have to love you. But I would say my family (immediate and extended) does honestly love me and not just because they have to. I am not just lucky to have such an amazing family. I am downright blessed.

I love my friends

For some reason I find myself reverting back to teenager-hood with all sorts of insecurities and doubts that plague me. I don't know that there is a trigger for this mental behavior, but I do seem to go through it every couple of months.

Let me tell you a little bit about myself. When I was a kid my family moved a lot. This forced me to choose one of two reactions - don't make friends because we'll be moving soon, or make all the friends you can as quickly as you can because we'll be moving soon. Anyone who knows me can tell you that I'm an extremely friendly person. Obviously, I chose the latter of the alternatives. I forced myself to become outgoing because I was lonely. And I do such a good job of making friends that it's hard to tell that I still have deep insecurities about it. Basically it boils down to this: I'm still afraid of rejection.

I love people. I find them fascinating and inspiring and all that other good stuff. And when I think of it too hard I start thinking how people couldn't possibly find me all that interesting. I think that I must be forcing a friendship on them. They already have friends. They don't need me.

Now, I know deep down that this is just silly. We all need each other. I know there really are people out there who love me through all my weirdness. But like any other female, I have to deal with hormones and a giant inferiority complex. So I have to convince myself that I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it! people like me.

For a long time I would force myself through the initial parts of a friendship, figuring that if we got past that part then people might just decide they like me and want to be my friend. And then I got scared and decided that if someone didn't seem to return the friendship then I had to back off because obviously they weren't interested.

So here is what I realize... I'm not the only one who fears this rejection. I'm not the only one who hopes that people will love me through all my weirdness. I'm not the only one who wants friends. I'm not the only one who is afraid to come on too strong.

I'm sorry if I still seem to back off and you do really want my friendship. Besides feeling massively tired most of the time (sleep exhaustion, mother is thy name!!!) and still trying to find a balance between working and the world's cutest baby, I'm still afraid that if you don't respond immediately then you don't want me to keep trying. Of course, being a new mother, I understand that sometimes other people are just tired and overwhelmed too. I just have a hard time seeing the difference sometimes. "Is she tired and overwhelmed, or has she decided she doesn't want to be my friend?" That's a question that I find myself silently asking constantly.

I love my friends. I love the people who have graced me with their friendship. I am awed by them continually for their hard work, their determination to survive and overcome, their willingness to let an outwardly friendly but secretly shy and scared hormonal girl come into their lives.

Thank you for letting me grow with you. Thank you for being patient with me. It is greatly appreciated.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

some thoughts, some progress

My baby is beautiful. He is bright and attentive and very social. He has no kind of stranger anxiety, as long as the person holding him is paying attention to him and smiling at him.

Because he is such a wonderful baby, it is much easier to deal with all the exhaustion that comes with being a new parent. And man, is there exhaustion! I have a hard time thinking of how that will multiply with more children. Kudos to all those who have more children!

For about a month, Felix was sleeping about 6 hours at a time during the night. Brent and I were very happy about this because we weren't getting enough sleep.

You would think that with all this cuteness and holding his own bottle (which he has done for about 2 months now) and playing by himself with anything that makes noise (plastic bags beware!) that it would mean we are more able to get things done. But Brent and I find ourselves exhausted every single day. Even when he falls asleep he doesn't stay that way for long.

It doesn't help that there are two large projects at work that have me working late nights - for the past couple of nights it's been overnight, meaning I work till 5 or 6 in the morning and then crash. This is hard on Brent because I then need to sleep till at least noon to be able to function and I still don't have much energy.

Anyway, Felix doesn't sleep more than maybe 4 hours at a time anymore. We have decided that we're going to try to keep him up in the evening so he doesn't "nap" from 7 pm to 11 pm and then want to be awake for the next 2 hours. Hopefully that will help some.

The other day I went to my sister's house to babysit while she had a class about being a cardiac nurse (apparently it's boring to be a regular RN for very long). Since I was going on exactly 1 hour of sleep from the night before, I bribed Luke and Hannah (ages 2 and 5) with promised treats to keep Felix occupied so I could sleep. And they did it. I was so impressed. By the time Hannah needed to get ready for kindergarten I had acquired an additional 2 hours of sleep.

Felix did something amazing there that he hasn't done at home. Maybe it has something to do with the wide open space, but he went from being on his belly to sitting up. Twice. He was pretty unhappy when he face-planted after the second time, but I was so proud!

He still won't quite crawl. He scoots backwards like a champ, and he has started to wiggle forward on his belly if he really wants what's in front of him. I'm thinking it's a matter of days before he actually crawls.

Rachel wanted to play with Felix when she got home from school. I didn't notice that he was smiling till I was sending the picture from my phone. Most of the time when he sees something shiny pointing in his direction he just stares at it intently with his mouth open. But he really does smile a lot. It makes me happy to have a little creature smile at me so easily.

He still likes everything we give him. He loves ice water and prefers sweet foods, but he loves spicy too. If it's really bland (mushed peas) or unusual he will make a really disappointed face, but he'll still eat it. I think he's most interested with the novelty of it all. What a cute little learner!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

General Conference

Man, I love this time of year.

I wanted to get this in during the weekend, but it didn't happen. I've been so tired since then and I started getting worried that I would forget everything. Of course, that basically happens during every general conference for me.

Anyway, I wanted to talk about a few things. I wouldn't say that I really learned anything new. Instead, I was reminded of really important things that I learned long ago. Here are some highlights...

1) Although we do not believe in the Nicene Creed, we emphatically declare that Mormons are Christian.
2) Simplicity is a very good thing, especially in religion.
3) I love old people with senses of humor. For an example, listen to any of President Gordon B. Hinckley's talks during this past weekend (go to www.lds.org and check out the general conference links).

Um. Dang. Sigh. I guess I'll have to go through it again. There were good uplifting stories, important messages, and inspiring actions (like during Elder Wirthlin's talk when Elder Nelson stood behind him to support him so he could finish).

I am, as always, proud to call myself a latter-day saint. Call me Mormon if you want, since that's how the world knows us best. Please understand that I have searched and prayed and learned and dug deep. Being Mormon was a very conscious decision for me, and I will never regret it. I love my faith. It sustains me and gives me hope. It helps me understand. And it helps me know how to forgive and love and progress.

With renewed resolve, I think I'm ready for another 6 months till the next conference. Cross your fingers for me!

Friday, October 5, 2007

phone trouble

About a year ago I used the insurance on my phone to replace my current/broken one, added Brent to my account, and upgraded my plan to have a family shared plan. This wasn't all done at the same time, but over a couple of months, my complaints with Verizon grew and I felt completely dissatisfied with the level of service that they gave me.

Fast forward to last week when I decided to give them one more shot and ask about some issues. I spent 36 minutes on the phone with one of the nicest customer service people I have ever spoken to. She was incredibly helpful, friendly, and sympathetic, and it made the experience totally positive.

Because of her advice and help, I decided to both change my plan (1-year contract requirement, but I get a special price because my current contract is almost over) and upgrade my phone (2-year contract requirement if I want any kind of a good price).

So Wednesday I called and talked to another very helpful and friendly CSR and asked the couple of final questions. Again - a completely positive experience.Although they can do phone orders, the rep from last week suggested I go online because I would get an online discount and not have to deal with a sales person.

So I went online and ordered a nice new phone. And because of the "new every 2" deal and the 2 year contract and the online discount, I got the phone for free.

I checked my email in the afternoon and there was a notification that it had already been shipped. It was here yesterday. Isn't it purty?

I called today and changed my plan and added texting. I figured if my friend wouldn't stop texting me then I might as well get a plan. But I found out that the text plan includes 250 picture messages and I'm elated! The new phone has a great camera and now I can stop worrying about my broken camera for a while. Yay! :)

Needless to say, I am a once-again-happy customer of Verizon.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007


For the past couple of weeks I've gone over to my sister's house to watch her youngest kids while she goes to a class at the hospital. The class was cancelled today because they scheduled 4 of the students/nurses to work, and now I feel like I have the day off.

Random thoughts today:

* I hate it when people assume that cranky = honest. Recently I "watched" a conversation on LDSLinkup that took place between two people and I was almost ashamed for them. These 2 adults, both about 40 years old, picked at each other and insulted each other as if they were in high school. I don't know if it's sadder that one was a guy and the other a girl. I've seen lots of those "fights" between two guys, but I don't know if I've ever seen a guy go after a girl so intently. Or maybe the reason it bothered me was that this was a friends' thread and not a public one, meaning that both of these people are friends of someone else. Shouldn't people who associate with each other respect each other? Or is it just that they're both grown-ups and aren't acting like it? Maybe I give younger people more leeway because they're young and stupid or young and bitter. It was annoying, to say the least.

* My latest cold is now about 2 weeks old and doesn't show any signs of leaving. I hate summer colds!!!!

* Every morning when I wake up, my ankle screams at me when I stand on it for the first minute or two. I bet you didn't know that ankles could scream, did you? Really though, even though I understood that this was a serious injury, it's been over 4 weeks now and I'm still very often in pain. There's still lots of swelling, and I can only walk on it for about 20 minutes before being really really uncomfortable. I wish healing didn't take so long!

* Last night we went to see Surf's Up with my cousin Erin and my brother Dan's kids (Dan and Linda are out of town). The movie was pretty fun actually. I wouldn't even mind owning it.

* We went out to eat at Wingers after the movie. We put Felix in the high chair and it worked quite well. He didn't fuss at all. Of course, we did give him a celery stick to gum and then a chicken bone (after I made sure there was nothing left that could come off). He was so cute - sitting there wobbling back and forth, alternately a chicken bone and a celery stick in his mouth (he had one in each hand).

* the picture is from Sunday. (You'll probably notice that all of the recent pictures are kind of grainy. It's because they're from my phone. We still haven't gotten the camera fixed. ) My niece Lauren loves playing with Felix and she put him on the duck. He didn't seem to mind at all and he even stayed on for a while. He's getting really good at balance.
* Felix had a bad rash on Sunday morning. We gave him a baby dose of benedryl and it did get better. I'm not sure if it's a real allergy or just a sensitivity. We haven't been really careful with new foods and such because he seems to like them all. Well, he didn't like it when I put his celery stick in the spicy wing sauce last night, but usually he loves even spicy foods. Of course we are careful not to give him anything he could choke on, so it's just getting flavors and nothing even slightly chunky.
* I like being busy with work, but it is hard to get used to sometimes. Brent has deadlines every two weeks with his work, but my work has deadlines every single day. I guess that's the nature of market research.
* My friend Jess called me yesterday to say she needed a vacation and to see if I would be available in a couple weeks. I'm thinking San Diego...