Thursday, September 29, 2016

Perfect Timing

Last Saturday, I got to go to the RS dinner and broadcast. It was really great to hang out with friends and listen to inspiring messages. I got home in time for James to chaperone the Homecoming dance. He took Katie for the first 30 minutes so she could see the "princesses". She really loved it and is still talking about it almost a week later.

The Primary program was all right on Sunday. The kids didn't jump right in on their parts, so they got help, but oh well. It was cute to see them all wearing matching scarves and bow ties. I had 11 kids in Primary that day, which I think is too many for one teacher. I think I'm going to request that they split my class. I have the CTR 6 and 7 classes, so it shouldn't be too hard.

We had a fun FHE on Monday since James wasn't working late. We took the kids to the park and got ice cream afterward. (Just what I need, right?) Actually, I have been doing a lot better about not stuffing my face when I'm feeling emotional. I suspect it will be a lifelong battle but that it will hopefully get easier.

Today was one of those days that really did work out well. I was able to get the whole lawn mowed right before it starting raining. I also took the kids shopping and was only 30 minutes late taking a nap. I also have the perfect amount of time right now before Joseph gets home and my piano lesson starts (if she shows up, which may or may not happen.) The money finally showed up in our HSA, so I was able to make payments on our medical bills. It really feels like they will never go away, but I know they will in time.

It is James's last day of mosquito abatement! I am so excited! It's been really rough having him gone. He didn't get home till after 9 on Tues. and Wed. (and probably will today too.) The extra hours alone with the kids really wear me down, both physically and mentally. It's no fun to put them to bed alone and then hang out all by myself. I have been able to stay busy to fight the loneliness. The kids and I have watched almost all the episodes of Good Eats on Netflix, and I think today we will make a trip to the library.

Tomorrow should be a lot of fun. We are going to Joseph's school carnival, and then Saturday and Sunday are Conference! I can't wait to sit back and listen to more inspiring messages.

Thursday, September 22, 2016


It's been gray and rainy today, not my favorite kind of weather. Thankfully, we don't get a lot of rain. When we do, I feel somewhat ungrateful for not thanking God for the "moisture", but I'm never grateful to have a day where I feel grumpy due to the weather. This will soon pass, though.

Our weather has been nice and cool, so I haven't had to deal with being too hot. Usually that sets in around week 20 and I can't get comfortable unless it's cooler than 70 degrees. I've actually been doing fine, no heartburn yet either. I just feel grouchy sometimes for no particular reason. I manage to sleep pretty well but always have that touch of fatigue. Having a newborn is so much better than being pregnant. Or, that has been true for me 3 times, so I hope the pattern continues.

I feel like I haven't done much this week. The boys had another birthday party last Saturday and yet another one tomorrow. I've been catching up on Call the Midwife - the show and the equally awesome books - in my spare time. There's isn't even anything to organize. Not yet, at least. Once we get another dresser, I will definitely get out all the baby stuff.

I think our car battery is dead, which is lame, but at least batteries are relatively inexpensive. We will get that fixed today and go buy a present for Joseph's friend.

I'm trying to do better at not eating my feelings. So far, I am doing okay. One day soon, I hope, I am going to learn how to deal with the gloom without eating ice cream. (The fact that it upsets my stomach isn't enough to stop me, unfortunately.) This is going to be a bigger deal during the winter. I almost always gain 10 lbs. when I'm not pregnant just because I eat when I'm sad. I guess I deal with a lot of fear during pregnancy. After all, there are about a million things that can go wrong.

To end on a happy note, James passed his mosquito abatement tests and we got the Geog. endorsement stuff (or at least part of it) sent off! Two fewer things for me to worry about in the coming week. Also, next week is the last week of mosquito abatement until April! It will be so great to have James home in the afternoons, and we shouldn't have any more days in the next  6 months where he doesn't see the kids at all. Life is good.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Phenix Visit, Projects

We had a good time with Myles, Mara, and Carmel. They arrived around 9 pm last Wed., so we hung out and talked. The next morning, we went to see the dinosaur bones at the quarry. Carmel had never been. I think we all had fun. After lunch I napped, and then my siblings went shooting with James. With the arsenal my family owns, it seems like a necessary tradition to make sure the guns are still working. We attended the ward dinner/BBQ (as they call it in UT, though I would say cookout), and that was fun too. We just hung out for the rest of the evening, and everyone left the next morning.

Saturday, Joseph and Kenny and I went to Tayson's 7th birthday party. Going to birthday parties convinces me over and over that I will never be the type of mom to plan a party, which is fine. My kids love going, but that's just not my thing. It seems like a ton of work. I like having a small family gathering with cake and a few presents, and most of the time I am too lazy to use decorations. I do appreciate the effort that other moms go to in order to make a cute theme happen. The theme of this party was cars.

Sunday was actually kind of terrible. We had Primary program practice, which I think is the worst part of being in Primary. It's loud, irreverent, and very difficult to sit through. I had very little time to give my lesson, and I had 11 kids and only 10 copies (and the library isn't open during class, of course). It was a little rough. I always felt really appreciated as the pianist, but I hardly ever feel that way as a teacher. I suppose being at home with kids all week doesn't make me super excited to continue it on Sunday. (And I sit alone during Sacrament meeting, which is often very stressful and not fun. Katie is a terror.) This too shall pass.

I bit off a little more than I could chew on projects, but by some miracle, I ended up finishing all but one so far.

Monday: made a Shutterfly book of our summer. I get two free ones every year, so scrapbooking a whole years costs me $16 and takes only a few hours. I love it. Also organized bathroom cupboards.

Wednesday: built a linen closet inside my walk-in closet. Our house did not come with a dedicated space for linens, something that's always bothered me. This project involved cleaning 6-gallon buckets that had been outside for a while, cutting 2 by 4's so they'd fit, cleaning said wood off, hauling in a few cinder blocks, and then putting everything together. I also sorted through our junk wood pile and got rid of most of it. We never use it anyway, but that did take extra time. Now all my linens can go in one place! It looks a little ghetto, but I don't care. It took me a few hours and cost me absolutely nothing.

I also started a scrapbook for Lewis and sorted through all my rags so I can prepare to make another latch hook rug.

Today: cleaned the shed and swept up the mess from yesterday.

Organization is a never-ending project. I am always finding things that are worn out and need repurposing (or to be thrown away), things that have outlived their usefulness, or random messes in cupboards or closets that encourage me to pull everything out and reorganize. I can honestly say that I know where everything is in my house, down to the last finish nail. It's a good feeling.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


I definitely love my routines. This past week has been no exception. I've been thinking a lot about how grateful I am to stay at home with my children. It is definitely a sacrifice, but I love it, even though it is stressful and boring all at the same time. :)

I've been feeling the baby kick a lot. I have started calling him by his name since we've had it picked out for a long time. Lewis Wade Head. Lewis kind of comes from two places: Lewis and Clark, and the cute little blond boy in Meet the Robinsons. Wade is a family name from my side. My dad and brother both have it for a middle name. It was actually the name of a slave who remained with the family (the Brinson branch on my paternal grandmother's side) after the Civil War, even though he could have left. I think it's such a cool story. Many men have used the middle name Wade since then.

Myles, Mara, and Carmel are coming into town today on their way back to BYU-I. It will be great to hang out with them tomorrow and go to the ward party. Of course that is a change from my normal weekly Thursday routine, but it is a welcome one. When siblings come to visit, it always feels like a party.

As for other goals, I have been working a lot on trying new recipes. I guess I've just been in the mood. I am really excited to publish a post soon about Asian food. I'm at the point where I can cook all my favorites at home, which makes me very happy. If I could only have one cuisine to eat for the rest of my life, it would definitely be Chinese. Add some ice cream in there (not that I need it!) and I'd be very happy.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

2 Jobs

This past week has been a bit stressful. James put in something like 16 hours with his second job. On top of his teaching job, that is a lot of time he isn't home. Over the past few days, I've seen him for about 1.5 hours each day. Tuesday night I had a mini breakdown because of the stress of him being gone. It didn't help that I had just been to a doctor's appointment where they claimed I gained 9 lbs. last month. Actually, it was 5, and it was over 5 weeks, and I got weighed in the afternoon, not morning like my last few appointments. The last thing I really want to worry about is how much I weigh, but it's hard to avoid the issue completely since I'm obviously going to put on weight constantly for the next 4.5 months. That is one of the many things I dislike about being pregnant. At least I have been sleeping well at night and napping again. I do feel pretty good overall.

When James is gone extra hours, I try to fill the time with meaningful things (not TV) so I can feel useful. I had a few failures that got me down. My grape jelly did not set up, and the new recipe I tried for dinner on Tuesday night was unpopular. I think I was the only one who liked it. I did have success with canning on Monday. I made my first ever batch of pickled green beans (aka dilly beans, though I didn't have any dill). I'm waiting a few weeks to see how we like them before I make more. The rest of the green beans are in the freezer.

My neighbors have been so generous with the produce. I have received lots of squash, cucumbers, and green beans. I love a big bowl of boiled squash with salt and pepper. It makes up for my pitiful garden. I still hope for some tomatoes, whether by donation or from my own plants, so I can make a batch of salsa. We are going though the salsa from last year really fast.

We have been looking at yard sales for a dresser for the baby, but no luck yet. If we don't find one by Christmas time, I think we might buy our first ever new dresser from IKEA to use for ourselves and give the baby our old dresser. Aside from buying a dresser - and diapers when the time comes - there is nothing I need to buy for this little guy. I can't wait till the time gets closer and I can actually set things up for him. I love looking at those tiny pajamas and wondering how a human can ever be that small.