Monday, March 30, 2009

B. M. and A. M.

I realized recently that I have my life mentally divided into Before Marriage (BM) and After Marriage (AM). (BM isn't a great abbreviation, so I considered BS and AS (before and after Stan) and decided to stick with BM and AM). So what happened when Robin became a Hall?

Today I'm starting a list of things I never did BM, besides the obvious of course:)
In no particular order here are a few off the top of my head:
  • cook scrambled eggs in the microwave
  • use napkins at the table
  • wear an apron
  • get awakened my someone elbowing my head
  • wear pink or purple
  • eat English muffins
  • drive a convertable
  • say Yes, M'am and No, Sir
  • be a Mom
  • ride a go-cart
  • enjoyed Shanandoah's Crossing (an out of the way time-share Stan's parents own)
  • own a sports car (our Dodge Grand Caravan)
  • write thank you cards
  • ride in a limo
  • buy kleenex- (TP always worked just fine)
  • play video games

So I'm curious- what things do you do now that you didn't before being married?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

"Rice Day"

Each week Eliza and Israel come home from preschool with little "craft" projects. This morning we learned about musical instruments and made that great tambourine - 2 plates stapled together with rice in the middle. These ones even had holes punched in them so we could "sew" them together with yarn.

The only problem was the rice just wouldn't stay in. So, I added more staples, when the rice was still flying, I added tape all along the outside (and it took a while too). Still it kept spilling. How was this possible? And then I discovered the hubris, the character flaw- all those punched holes. Rice couldn't help but escape. So, instead of cleaning the floor yet again, I let the kids have at it. Rice flew everywhere, they wanted it to come out faster, so I removed some tape. Israel got some scissors. Julia was in heaven. I took some pictures and let the kids wreak havoc- telling them we'd clean it up in a little while. He he he, some free Mom time.
They tore their tambourines, Eliza exclaiming it awe, "Mom, it's a plate. I made a plate out of paper!"

Surprising me Israel came to find me after about 10 minutes with a stacking cup filled with rice. "I'm cleaning up Mom, isn't this a good thing?" So we made piles, filled cups with rice and poured the rice into the biggest stacking cup. We played cleanup for quite a while. I-"we're doing a good thing for Jesus," "didn't I have a good idea?" and "aren't we being so good" were often spoken. He even thought of calling today "Rice Day"

I wonder if it was subconscious that we had rice with dinner?

(Eliza made these in the younger preschool as well on Tues. and the first thing she said when I picked her up was "Mom, don't shake it." Right before I'd come some dried bean had escaped, so the Mom was busy adding stables)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Daddy Discourse

I have never posted on this blog to my memory but Robin said that since it says "Daddy Discourse" that I should. I post most my lectures on my other blog. There I post very very very politically incorrect statements that offend pretty much everyone who doesn't know me. I voted Constitution Pary for Ron Paul this last election and for the local ones except where there wasn't a Constitution party representative. Then I voted Libertarian, and if there wasn't one of those, then I voted Republican. You will never hear anything good from my mouth about Obama. So anyways, as a father I believe my time is best spent playing! I love to play, I try to play with my kids during the day and I try to spend individual time with each of them. I don't think kids can ever get enough of their dad. My dad spent so much time with me but it was never enough! I always wanted more. My memories with my dad are soft and warm to me and they make me feel safe and comfortable like a warm blanket. My dad was the best dad I could ever ask for and I would never want another. So I hope my kids grow up with a similar feeling about me. These last couple of days I've spent quite a lot of time holding Julia and comforting her, and she has really become my buddy. She fell asleep on my lap with her head on my desk last night while I was doing some work. Her sweet little body was like an angel. I remember when TigerLilly (our cat) used to sleep on me and how nice that was. My Eliza is always glad to see me and usually runs to give me a hug even if she just saw me a few minutes ago. Israel reminds me so much of Travis that it makes me sad. I miss my brother and sometimes seeing Israel so often makes me miss him. If I think too much about it I start crying (like right now), and I usually end up calling Israel by the name of Travis on accident. I think if most dads are like me, then they probably usually feel inadequate compared to their son's talents. Israel is a star, he shines everywhere he goes and is kind to his sisters (most of the time) and treats others all the same (with lots of love). I'm trying to teach him that just because he's bigger than others doesn't mean he can bully them. I think I bullied Travis too much when we were little, but as I got older and was bullied myself I think I quit that almost completely and swore I'd never make anyone feel like I did. Unfortunately, my memories of bullies are all too fresh in my mind and I've tried to work through these disturbing memories using my counseling skills. I can only remember being pushed once or twice, and I was never hit or kicked or even yelled at by my bullies. My bullies were all psychological bullies. That was what they resorted to in a society where physical bullying is not permitted. Teachers have no training in psychological bullying and don't know how to respond to it, most of them can't even recognize it and think that the bullied child is just too sensitive. Having studied the subject at depth I've learned that whether one is affected by psychological bullying has nothing to do with being sensitive, except that bullies might see this as a vulnerability upon which they can prey. Studies show that no one is immune from psychological bullyings affects, whether they are rich - poor, strong - weak, abuse - non-abused, educated - non-educated, or otherwise; the only predictor is that women are more likely to be abused. If you're a parent, be sensitive to your kids. If they're not comfortable, find out why. Listen to them and don't tell them they're wrong if they're uncomfortable. Sometimes they really are being abused, but if you're not listening then you won't know.

Is that a dog barking?

Early Sat. morning as Stan and I were waking up we heard a barking noise. Our neighbors had gotten and dog 2 weeks previous and we wondered if we wer finally hearing little Rosie. But, as we continued to listen we realized it was definately coming from our kids bedroom. You may have already guessed it. Julia has croup.

Other sillies. Today while preparing a casserole dinner and waiting for the chicken to cook I had a brilliant plan. I decided to make cookies. We always make a full batch and put about half in the freezer for later. Amazing me I used to microwave to defrost the molasses cookie dough (so I could cook the cookies in my preheated oven before the casserole needed to go in). Unfortunately I put the bag in the microwave, pressed defrost, then 1, and immediately forgot that I had anything in the microwave. I specifically remember thinking why am I in the kitchen, checking the chicken, and then coming back to the computer. 3 minutes later I heard a beep- oh uh, I had a "burn-my-hand" partially cooked cookie mess. I tried to massage the ziplock bag but it was too hot. After cooling in the fridge I was finally able to handle the dough. The texture had changed and the butter partially seperated, but I pressed on. The cookies are still edible-my family happily gobbled them up, but they're not nearly as good as the first time around. So much for my brilliant plan.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Triassic Bouldering Family Adventure

Me working a V4 on the Hammerhead boulder at the Petrogliph area.
Julia had a great time climbing and being independant. It helped that we packed lots of goodies. She eventually ended up without her clothes because of the heat. We slathered on the sunscreen and thankfully she didn't burn.

We had so much fun together climbing rocks, playing in the dirt, enjoying the surprising heat, and conquering some fun problems. We're going again next weekend. I think we're getting addicted to bouldering.
Israel was our good helper

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Saturday, March 21, 2009

One more proof that Stan and I were meant for each other

My favorite Starburst is Orange, then yellow, pink, red.
Stan likes Red, pink, yellow, then orange.

What could be more right than that?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Sun at last

This week we have been living outside and I'm an so happy. Stan said today that the girl's look so healthy. We decided it was their coloring from being in the sun. We've been climbing the "pokey"tree (I read my book-The Zookeeper's Wife which is really good so far- for about 20 minutes sitting up there), riding bikes, and most of all basking in the beautiful bright sun. Yesterday we even did our first outdoor climbing up Rock Canyon.

Julia has been talking more. She now says Mom consistantly, of course she's good at hi, and uh-oh, uh-uh (no). She's also picked up nana (banana) and saying Dad more. Tonight she said Owl and Eoyre (we were reading Winnine the Pooh and the Honey Tree). I couldn't even get her to try and say Pooh. Also so cute- earlier this morning I retaught Israel how to blow his nose and made a really big deal about him figuring it out. So a few hours later on the playground Julia comes over to me with a tissue and does her blowing (like she's cooling down food) while holding the tisse to my nose and keeps it there until obedient me blows my nose. She did this 4 times in about 3 minutes. She was so happy. Also she is crazy about Eliza's croc's right now (those plastic hole covered shoes) She insists on wearing them and of course their feet are slightly different sizes, although not as different as you might imagine, so as soon as I find some I'm going to get her her own pair.

Eliza has about 6 stuffed animals next to her very organized when I put her to bed. She told me they were her family and picked "me" up. I'm a big stuffed pink bear. She told me laughing that I'm bigger then daddy- the Army Ranger bear. She also pointed out Granddaddy Hall, the one closest to her a Purple striped tiger with a tie. She used to be afraid of Granddaddy, but thankfully she's over that. She and I had a very good day. Happy St. Patrick's Day

Friday, March 13, 2009

On the phone

Last week at the end of 3 different telephone conversations with men, he was told "I love you too" (1 x) and blown kisses (2x). Are we so in the habit that we don't even realize how we are ending a conversation? Maybe it's a little like when Stan and I started holding hands a lot and I would be walking next to a friend and try to hold their hands. Either way, 3 in a week is a bit strange.

Our Pre-Easter Cake

Our ward asked each family to make an Easter cake together for the Pre-Easter party of Sat. Stan thought it would be fun to make a pastel nest with eggs inside. We thought to make fondant eggs, but with time constaints we ended up instead blowing out eggs (I forgot how hard that is. Stan and I were both pretty light headed after we were done- 1 for each family member to decorate). Israel and Eliza mixed colors of fondant and Israel rolled them out and cut the strips with an pizza cutter. Then everybody- including Julia helped to decorate our cake-(not surprisingly she kepted sticking her fingers in it). I don't think it will win any prizes, but we really did make and decorate the cake as a family, so I'm happy.

Blankets for Julia

Julia, like her older siblings loves soft blankets. In fact, she likes them so much Eliza was having fits. Julia kept taking her prized white blanket, the one Eliza used to give her freely when Jula was sad. At the time I was proud of my Eliza to so freely share her special happy. But a few months ago it turned ugly (crying, grabbing, etc.) so I knew I'd have to do a scary thing, make Julia her own silky blanket (cricot). My mom helped me get set with a pattern, fabric, and thread (thanks Mom!), and I was left with a lot of slow hand stitching to do. After 3 months, a few stitches donated my family, and a borrowed sewing machine when mine unexpectedly decided not to function, I am done- DONE done. I am so happy and proud of myself and my stitches aren't even all then even. Cutting away the extra fabric was scary, but I did it and she has a snuggly that thankfully she has accepted as hers. Here are some pictures of her with her silky, and also one with Israel's leapard skin blanket she's happily wearing.