Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Rats!

Last Thursday was a glorious day. It was the day I climbed up into the attic and retrieved my blessed and beloved Capri's.

The capri's that I didn't get to wear last year because I was too fat (well okay, too pregnant) to fit into them.

The capri's that signal the end of winter and the beginning of summer (we often don't get much of a spring here in Cache Valley).

Some years, the only thing that gets me through January and February is the thought of those capri's and my favorite sandals in the attic, just waiting to be adored and worn.

It's been a little too cold for capri's the last couple of days, but they are now out of the attic and in the closet, just waiting for that glorious day, the day when they will again feel the warmth of natural sunlight upon their cotton/poly blend fibers . . .






So, you can imagine my dismay and disillusionment when, just a few minutes ago, I read here that capri's are totally out, totally unflattering, and anyone who is anyone totally shouldn't wear (or even own) them anymore.




Tragedy!!!


Dang you Tim Gunn! It's one thing for me to know that I'm wearing something that is completely out of fashion AND unflattering, but it is an entirely different thing for me to know that everyone ELSE knows that I'm wearing something that is completely out of fashion and unflattering.


However, I will not submit! My love for my capris is too great! I've waited too long, and loved too ardently.

I will wear them, flattering or no!




I can tell already, it's going to be a character-building summer.






toothpastefordinner.com


(comic compliments of toothpastefordinner.com)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

heirs to eternal life

"In the premortal realm, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshiped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize his or her divine destiny as an heir of eternal life. "

(The Proclamation on the Family, 2nd paragraph)


That's kind of a long sentence. Often, when I read sentences that are that long, I either break it down into smaller ideas so that I can wrap my head around them, or just give up altogether and move on to another sentence. In this case, I'll choose the "break it down" route.

So, in my opinion, this sentence says:


1. There was a place where we all lived before this life.
2. I, as well as my spirit brothers and sisters knew my Father in Heaven and worshiped him.
3. We (my spirit brothers and sisters and I) accepted a plan that Heavenly Father presented to us.
4. The plan included a way for us to get a physical body, and to have some experiences on earth.
5. Those experiences would help us on the road to perfection.
6. Ultimately, those experiences could (depending on the decisions we would make on earth) allow us to obtain eternal life.


As I break it all down, there are some marvelous ideas contained in that sentence. I love to think about our Father in Heaven presenting this plan to us, and then allowing us to choose, rather than just rounding us all up around Him, and saying, "Okay, this is how it's going to be."

I love knowing that the experiences I'm having here on earth aren't just random occurrences in my life, but have been and continue to be given to me specifically--a kind of "individualized coursework" if you will.

I love knowing that Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ have made it possible for me to live with them and with my loved ones again, and forever.


Forever.





(For more of my writings along this line, click on the label "Family Proclamation" on the sidebar. I've written about the Proclamation on the Family a few times before, and I'm planning to write about it from time to time for the next little while.)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

pain & perspective

Monday morning I woke up with a bit of a stiff neck. The next morning at 5:30 a.m. I woke up in agonizing pain. Well, it wasn't agonizing pain when you compare it to the ache of a tooth (me last December), the ache of an eye infection (me in the ninth grade), or the ache of natural childbirth (me never--I hope). All the same, it was pain and I didn't like it. I took some Aleve and prayed that my shoulder, neck, and back muscles would relax their way back to normal.

They didn't, and I spent much of Tuesday morning feeling bad for myself, and making exaggerated groaning sounds every time I was within Eric's earshot.

One of the issues at hand was that I was scheduled to sing at an assisted living center in our neighborhood. I thought about cancelling, but I decided against it. So, at 10:00 a.m., I gathered up Heather's car seat, complete with Heather inside, and (wincing all the while) we drove the four blocks to the center.

It all turned out to be a lovely experience. My song went quite well, and I was followed by one of my neighbors, who gave a message based on some words and experiences recorded by Joseph Smith. As I alternated between listening to her and trying to keep a very busy Heather occupied on my lap, I glanced around at the residents surrounding me. As I looked them over, I realized that they had possibly also been awakened that morning in pain, pain that might have been truly agonizing. I realized that it was likely that many of them woke up in pain more often than they woke up pain-free. I felt guilty for my whiny-ness, and I took a moment to be grateful. Grateful that I generally woke up feeling pretty good, and grateful that I had been given the opportunity to see my situation in a different light.

And I resolved that I wouldn't complain anymore.

Unfortunately, I forgot that resolution when, still in pain, I misjudged the size of my car door yesterday, and hit myself right in the left eye, leaving a very nice bruise that if you didn't know better, you might think was my return to 80's purple eyeliner.

Oh well.

I'm feeling much better today, I think by tomorrow or Saturday I should be back to normal.

And that's all I have to say about that.





In other news, life is good. Eric's a week away from graduating, Heather is learning that she can roll to get where she wants and what she wants. I've moved all the cleaning agents to the top shelves, and covered all the electrical outlets with those plastic pluggy-thingies. At this precise moment, Eric is up changing Her Little Highness, and from the sound of things, I'm guessing that I just got out of the messiest diaper of the day.



Indeed, life is good.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Carmen Miranda

A few days ago, Eric and I were talking about names, specifically names that we could have chosen for Heather, but didn't. The names "Susan" and "Phyllis" came up. We both like "Susan" okay, but we're not really big fans of the other name, at least not for our little girl. Of course, we like the name "Heather" best of all the game.

Anyway, that conversation led us to one in which Eric was comparing and contrasting Phyllis Diller, Carol Channing, and Carmen Miranda. I confessed that I didn't know who Carmen Miranda was, and Eric was amazed at my ignorance.

He then went on to give me a play by play of a scene from one of Carmen's movies, complete with intricate details regarding a whole bunch of gigantic bananas maneuvered in synchronization by a whole cadre of long-legged, lipstick-clad women. Listening to that description was pure silliness, which is another way of saying pure magic.

And then, just in case his descriptions hadn't done justice, he scoured the internet and found me these seven minutes of delight:




Now, that's what I call love.



(and silliness--pure and unadulterated silliness)
(have I used the phrase "pure silliness" enough in this post yet?)
(three videos in one week--that's definitely a record here)
(no videos next week . . . promise)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

accountant (and mom) by day, blog design GENIUS (and mom) by night

Do you like my new header?*



I made it all by myself, using this picture, and this free software.



Someday I'll ask my brilliant graphic designer husband to make me a really cool and unique blog header. After that, every time I go to my blog I'll feel all shivery and happy inside. It shouldn't be hard to do right? I mean, the word "quirky-ness", which actually isn't even a word, just screams "unique and cool", right?



For now though, Enrique is a little on the "hanging-on-by-the-skin-of-his-teeth" side. He's got less than two weeks to do about a million projects so that he can graduate from this fine institution.



After that, he'll be occupied with the building of an amazing state-of-the-art website for this fine business.



So, for a bit, it appears that I'm left to my own web-designing devices.



Lucky You.







*(If you don't like the new header, don't say so, okay?)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

April Fourteenth

WE WENT FROM THIS:

Yup, there's a little lock of hair flying in my face. Also, Eric's hair appears to be much thinner than it actually is. What can I say? It was windy and extra sunny that day. Isn't it fun how my bridal veil though seems to float behind us though? I guess the breeze wasn't all bad.








TO THIS:

This picture makes us both look pudgy-er than we are in real life. Especially me.
Promise.






In two years.


Two years that simultaneously feel like they occured in the blink of an eye, AND feel like they have been the only way of life that I've ever known.









Cake For Everyone!!!


(just kidding)


(kidding about the cake, not the two years)










(Is it strange that I felt the need to make explanatory comments about the two fairly decent pictures on this post, and said nothing about the absolutely wack-o one that finishes it all off? Yeah. I have no explanation for that.)



Sunday, April 12, 2009

"I will not leave you comfortless"

Easter is a little bit hard for me sometimes.

I love my Savior. I think of Him throughout my day, nearly every day. I try to follow His example.

When Easter comes, I want to commemorate His Atonement in a way that is memorable, meaningful, and respectful. I'm grateful that Easter is not commercialized to the extent that Christmas is, and yet, possibly because Easter is a little less "on the radar" so to speak, some years I let the holiday sneak past me, without really pondering the significance of all that it commemorates.

This morning I was determined not to do that. I woke up, resolved to have a good day, a spiritual day, a day of love and joy and peace.


Unfortunately, I didn't confer with Heather before I made that resolution.


I'm not sure what was going on with Her Little Highness, but this morning turned out to be a tough one. Generally pretty easy-going, Heather was not so much today. Actually, she was downright needy, crotchety, grouchy, and demanding. I eventually responded with impatience, frustration, and despair.



By about 9:15 a.m., we were both in tears.


At 9:30, I put the princess down for her morning nap, and went in to style my hair and re-apply the make-up that I'd cried off. As I mourned the loss of my spiritual Easter (because really, how could I salvage the day after I'd had a morning like that?), I decided to go to my Church website and see if I could find a talk or something else that I could listen to that might help me feel better.


This is what I found. It's four and a half minutes long, and it has made all the difference for me today.




"Brothers and sisters, one of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghost, angels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil, prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. . . Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never be left alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said, 'I will not leave you comfortless. [My Father and] I will come to you [and abide with you].'

My . . .plea at Easter time is that these scenes of Christ’s lonely sacrifice, laced with moments of denial and abandonment and, at least once, outright betrayal, must never be reenacted by us. He has walked alone once. Now, may I ask that never again will He have to confront sin without our aid and assistance, that never again will He find only unresponsive onlookers when He sees you and me along His Via Dolorosa in our present day. As we approach this holy week—Passover Thursday with its Paschal Lamb, atoning Friday with its cross, Resurrection Sunday with its empty tomb—may we declare ourselves to be more fully disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, not in word only and not only in the flush of comfortable times but in deed and in courage and in faith, including when the path is lonely and when our cross is difficult to bear. This Easter week and always, may we stand by Jesus Christ 'at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in, even until death,' for surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen. "
--Elder Jeffrey R. Holland


Happy Easter to you all.


-char

Friday, April 10, 2009

an update on various and sundry things that have been mentioned here of late

Remember how excited I was to be in fourth place in my brother's March Madness competition?

Yeah, I got killed. I chose Duke to go all the way.

Sigh.

* * *

In better news, my father is two treatments away from being finished with radiation treatments. Hooray! Remember when I wrote that the radiation was more of a "just-in-case" afterthought than anything else? Yeah, that was a little overly optimistic on my part. Radiation, while not as drawn out as chemo, hasn't been all that kind to my dear papa. We're all pretty happy to see those treatments drawing to an end.

* * *

Heather has been adding new foods to her repertoire every 5-7 days. (This is how often our doctor recommended that we wait between new food introductions. Heaven forbid I do anything with this girl that is not strictly in keeping with professional counsel). Now in addition to rice cereal and carrots, she's eating green beans, butternut squash, barley cereal, oat cereal, and little pieces of white bread that I give her on the two evenings per night that find me actually cooking dinner. She gnaws on the bread, which curbs her impatience at being stuck in the chair. Since I made this little discovery, dinnertime has been more pleasant for all of us.

Incidentally, every time I think about the fact that I only cook an average of two nights a week, I just have to wonder what those of us who don't get our food from little jars subsist on for the other five. We generally eat out or get take-out once on the weekends, and we have Sunday dinner with Eric's parents quite frequently. Still, that leaves three other nights primarily unaccounted for. I know we're not fasting.

Of course, now that I think of it, my dinner last night consisted of tortilla chips and guacamole, and I think I remember Eric heating up one of his two specialities (Specialty #1 is ramen noodles, with or without an egg mixed in. Specialty #2 is tomato soup with mozzarella cheese melted into the mix).

Mystery solved.



(Why is it that whenever I post something like I posted
here, I am suddenly seized by a fit of wanting to blog all the time? Weird.)

Thursday, April 09, 2009

At least it's a comic strip I like.

Last night I realized that Eric says "Good Grief" often.

And by "often", I mean all the time.


When I informed him of my observation, he didn't even try to defend himself. He agreed with me completely.



















It's okay though.













Guess what I say all the time?


















p.s.--Wicked?

Was awesome!

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

spring dresses and a furrowed brow

Two of my favorite shots.




I love how dapper Eric is here, but someone else looks a little bit worried.










As for this one, well, I don't really know what to say.

Monday, April 06, 2009

7:51 p.m.

In a bit of role reversal, it's 7:51 p.m., and I'M sitting at the computer while ERIC gets Heather ready for bed. Nearly a complete turn-around from what is usual.



(I'm a little on the exhausted side, and so I asked Eric to take over for me. He said yes.)



(Eric's no dummy.)







Life is going well for us these days. We were able to spend some quality time this weekend with members of Eric's family, as well as our friends Donna & Steve. It was lovely. In addition, this is "Wicked Week". As (I hope) any first-time mom of a six-month-old might be, I'm a bit overwhelmed with all that needs to be taken care of Heather-wise so that we can leave good old Cache Valley, but I think I'm really going to enjoy the break, the show, the company, and the whole experience in general.



My postings have been a little on the sparse side lately, both in quantity and in quality. Sorry about that. I've got a few other projects going on at the moment, and so I don't have as much time for blogging as I have had at other times. I'm okay with that. There are seasons for everything. I don't want to quit blogging, and so I won't. But, for now, these sparse, write-as-I-run (or, more appropriately perhaps, as I don't run) may be more of the rule rather than the exception for a bit. That's the way it goes sometimes.



And I think that's about it for now. Eric (who is currently reading Heather her bedtime story using a wide variety of foreign accents) has made it all the way to Little Cats H, I, J, & K,* which means that the story is nearing the end, and if I want to have my special "singing to Heather time" (and I definitely DO), I need to get this spell-checked, titled, and published.



Happy Monday.






(Incidentally, Isn't this a funny picture? I looked up "Joy" in Google Image, and this is one of the things that came up. 'Cause you know, nothing says "joy" like a white-haired mermaid doll holding a big ole pearl, does it? Odd.)

















*See "The Cat in the Hat Comes Back"

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Gems from Eric



"Now this is what I like! You enjoying a movie, and me having a good time making fun of it. It's perfect!"

Spoken on Saturday evening while we were watching/listening to "Andrew Lloyd Weber: The Royal Albert Hall Celebration" on DVD (me on the couch, him at the computer).


"Sometimes I just have to restrain myself from kissing Heather as much as I want to."

When asked why, Eric responded with the explanation that Heather's uncommon beauty was certain to get her an over-ample supply of attention from the public at large, and he didn't want to run the risk of spoiling her by indulging in too many kisses (yeah, we're completely biased parents). I told him that I didn't think a girl could get too many kisses from her father.

He didn't agree with me (verbally at least), but I've noticed a distinct increase in the number of father-daughter kisses since then.





And that's what I have for ya'll today. We're good. All is well. I have nothing more to report at the moment.
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