Wednesday, December 24, 2008

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

I hope everyone has a great Christmas! Try to take the time out sometime in the next couple of days to remember what the day is all about. Then forget it and get down to some serious present opening! (totally kidding there)
The Almighty Liz

Monday, December 15, 2008

Bits of This and That

Well, do to a supremely stupid computer, I haven't been able to post. So, some updates are in order, and as an extra special treat, I even have pictures! Your welcome.
We haven't really been up to much around here. It's flu season and it seems we have something or other every week. This puts a damper on our social agenda, but we soldier on.
Had my dad up a couple of weeks ago, and we put in some new lighting. We are going to do some other things as well, but don't feel it is wise to blab about it to the World Wide Web.
Had a big ice storm last night, and everything is slick as snot today. It took John quite awhile to break his car out of the garage, so he was late to work. So was everyone else, so it wasn't a big deal. Jonni is having a snow day, and the kids are uber squirrely and driving me nuts, but I can't send 'em outside, it's too cold, so what're ya gonna do? Throw 'em in bed for naps early, and hope they sleep until their daddy gets home to play with them, of course! (I'm a bit under the weather, and so have no energy for cool and creative snow day activities.)
John had a Christmas party at work that I attended last Friday. I got to see where he works and meet all of his fellow employees as well as some of the company big wigs. The cool thing was that I couldn't tell the big shots from the peons. Everyone was so nice!! We also got a year end bonus, our first ever! I tell ya, I really like this company.
We finally got our Christmas tree on Saturday, and I think it's my favorite so far. It's huge, and I think the best smelling tree we've ever had! The whole house smells like a pine forest, it's great!
So, on to some pics, and I hope everyone's having a merry Christmas so far!
The Almighty Liz

Some random shots of the kids because I think they're adorable, and it's been way too long since I posted any pics of them.





Our new handy-dandy floodlight. It's way bright. Look out intruders! You could play basketball out there! If our driveway weren't so crappy, that is.
This is our cat, Cloud. I don't think I've ever posted any pictures of her before. Isn't she gorgeous? We sure do love her.
This is our backyard covered in ice.
This is a random UPS guy out doing deliveries. I felt super bad for him. He can only go like 3 miles an hour on on the ice. It's going to take him forever to get his job done.

This is the car that is still locked in ice. Ain't no movin' that baby 'till things thaw in my opinion.

This is our Christmas tree. I dunno why you can't see the lights. What a rip-off. We love it though. And John and I made the star on top our very own little selves. Aren't we crafty?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Drumroll Please...

Well, I had a Doctor's appointment today, and there is some good news and some not so good but not exactly bad news either. Which means there IS no bad news, yay!
Good news:
I'm off the penicillin!! Hip, Hip, Hooray!! I'm so sick of taking that stuff, (seven months now!!) and I seriously don't think my digestive tract will ever be the same.
My doctor is super happy with my obedience. He says that my recovery wouldn't have been nearly so quick if I hadn't been doing so good with my diet and exercise and everything he tells me to do. To which I riposted (of course), "That was a fast recovery?!" He replied that he was full on expecting to be treating me for at least a year, because I had had the R. Fever for four months. Yikes!! Perhaps I should learn a little more patience especially because of the not so good news:
It will be another year before my endurance and resistance to disease is back to "normal". Which means that for a good bit more I will be sleeping a lot still, and getting tired easy, and getting whatever illness decides I look tasty. And that is if I keep at the exercise full throttle like I have been. (although that is just my life now. I will never be able to slack off in that area again. Period.)
I also had to get a flu shot, as did my son, and my husband and daughter have to get one ASAP as well. This is in part because Erik is three and in the "danger" group, but mostly because I'm horribly susceptible right now (as I will always be, but right now is just worse), and the next couple of months it is critical that I don't become super-duper sick. My arm is sore. *sigh*
But, all in all, I'm happy with this news. As soon as I started working out, I knew this was going to be a long, hard slog, and so how depressed can I get that I was right? Not very. And getting off the #$^% meds is a HUGE plus. I simply cannot complain about anything since I got that.
In other news, it was also Erik's three year check-up, and *shocker!* he's perfect. No complaints, and no problems. Hoorah!
The Almighty Liz

Monday, December 1, 2008

A Very Exciting Thanksgiving Indeed

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! Ours was...eventful, lol! It started off normal enough for us. Having both sides of the family close, we do two Thanksgiving dinners every year. The only real difference this year was that Jonni decided to be sick, and missed out on both dinners, poor thing. After being stuffed silly, me and the kids headed home, leaving John in Illinois with our recently sort-of repaired car, to hang out with his brothers on Black Friday. I got home with two sleeping children, hauled them inside and into bed, called John to let him know we made it safely home, put some things away in the kitchen and went to lock the door. Why is that significant, you ask? Because somebody else grabbed the doorknob on the other side!! I quickly put my shoulder to the door and slid the deadbolt home, just as that somebody else put their shoulder to the door and tried to bust in!!! Luckily, I got the bolt shot, and I called John. (yes yes, I know, it should have been cops first! it's just a knee-jerk reaction for me) I called them from our cell while John stayed on the landline, and they got there about a minute later. (we live in a very very small town) They didn't find anything or anyone, much to everyone's relief, and John came home after all.
We decided to spend the night at Bruce and Renae's the next night. John still wanted to hang out with his siblings, and I had a hair appointment with my mom on Saturday, so we deemed this a good compromise and I didn't have to spend the night alone in my house. *shudder* Also, my dad is coming this Saturday to install a LOT more light in the front of my house with motion detectors in front and back. I haven't ruled out an alarm system yet either. We'll see.
John and his brothers and sisters went out on Friday night to ogle the crazy people at the malls, whilst Bruce and I manned the fort at home, and kept the kids from burning the place down. We watched a truly stupid movie, Journey to the Center of the Earth, (don't waste your money or time on it), and got the kids in bed just as John and Renae got back. We then watched Get Smart, which was the funniest movie I've seen in awhile.
The next day, while Renae and Bruce were at a race (Renae participating, Bruce volunteering), I got my hair done. I got my blue streaks!! I've wanted to do them forever, and I finally talked my mom into it! (thanks mom!) I totally love it, as do my son, Todd and Suzanne, and maybe Renae and Bruce. (and can't remember their reactions.) Jonni keeps asking me why I had to go and color my hair with a crayon, and John quite simply abhors it. He hasn't been able to look at me without disgust since it was done. It's getting on my nerves. It's already fading though (after only three days!! I'm totally bummed) so that should make him happy. (mean-hearted *grumble-grumble*)
We went home that night and everyone except Jonni woke up sick on Sunday. We're still sick and miserable. I hate flu season!!
So that's about it. Oh! Along with the pics of my hair below, I put the one and only good shot I got of Erik on his birthday. My batteries ran out before we even got to the cake! Also, my mother-in-law recently reupholstered my couch, so I threw in some before and after shots of that. Enjoy!
The Almighty Liz



Erik opening his first present.

The original fabric on the couch.

An in-progress shot.

Finished product! Doesn't it look great?!

One shot of the hair. See how much it's faded? It was a really bright peacock blue. (we were shooting for navy, but didn't quite make it.)

A slightly better shot maybe. None of the pics I took turned out super good. Sorry!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Catching Up

Okay, so I was sick all last week, and of course, we had a busy and blog-worthy week. So, sit back and get comfortable, this is gonna be a long one.
**disclaimer; my camera's batteries went dead, so I have no pics. (stupid technology)

So, going in chronological order, a week ago last Friday, Jonni came bouncing off the bus after school because she lost her first tooth!! Apparently, in letting one of her girlfriends wiggle it, said girlfriend wiggled it a little too hard and it came out! Our tooth fairy was sort of on her game, after some quick maneuvering and a little help. You see, she went to the local Goodwill-type store the day before, and spent all of her change. She still had pennies and such-like, but you can't give a kid a dollar's worth of pennies under their pillow! So, with the help of our good friends the Andrews, she swapped the small change for quarters, and the event was saved! Jonni duly received a dollar the next morning, and was ecstatic.
The next big event was the following Thursday when my little boy turned 3! As I was still sick, we had a quiet affair at home. Just cake and presents and my in-laws, who literally happened to be in the neighborhood dropping off someone at the airport. We will be celebrating with my family on Thanksgiving this Thursday when everyone will be together. (PS, John made the cake, so it turned out just fine, for those of you who remember the Great Cake Debacle of Jonni's birthday a couple of years ago) Erik received a couple of Dr. Suess books, which he loves, a Spiderman shirt from the Grandparents Sever, and a bag full of cars, which he adores more than anything on this Earth, including his mother I think.
Next came the weekend, and the opening of Twilight the movie!! I got a group of mainly girls with some husbands together to go to a matinee on Saturday, and it was a rompin' good time. I liked the movie okay, but I had my problems with it. I'm not going to spoil it for anyone, and I think they did a mainly good job, but I didn't like it as much as say my hubby did, or some of the others there. We went for ice cream afterwards to jaw over the movie, and I think a good time was had by all. We drove to my in-laws house (which was the meeting point for everyone) and got in my car to pick up the kids (who were watched by the ever perfect Erik-Timpani's-husband, more on that in a minute), turned the key in the ignition, and the blasted thing refused to start!! We tried jumping the battery, and cursing (Mormon cursing, c'mon!), and raving to the Car God, but to no avail. The fickle thing just would not respond. So, making the best of it, we spent the night at Renae's, which was a good time. The kids especially enjoyed themselves, loudly and enthusiastically. The next morning, I got it started, but everyone was at church, so I left it there, having nothing else to do with it. After John got home, we went to pick it up, and the @#% thing wouldn't start again!! So, we hitched a ride from my father-in-law, and sent it to a mechanic this morning in Illinois. Hopefully it's something simple and cheap. As it is, I'm without a car this week. It's not been a full day yet, and I'm already stir crazy! I HATE not having the freedom to go where I want, when I want. Ugh! Cars!!
Anyway, back peddling a couple of days, the kids had a blast with Erik whilst we were at the movies on Saturday. Erik planned a Diego Adventure for them, where they had to go through forests, lakes and climb pyramids to get to their destination; treats! He will be posting about that soon I'm sure at http://www.quisandvance.blogspot.com/ . Thanks again Erik!!
So, while we did have lots of fun this past week or so, the ever present Car Demon had to throw somewhat of a wet blanket over everything. But who knows? Maybe we'll be forced to get a new car. Wouldn't that be horrible?
The Almighty Liz
**Update** We heard back from the mechanic, and basically the thing's a piece of junk now. He suggested we get rid of it as soon as possible. Hooray! New car after all!! (that was said with heavy sarcasm. I don't need a car payment on top of my two mortgage payments, thanks anyway.)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Eye Witness Account

This is the email I got written my someone who was there for the LA temple siege. It's from Sunday; does anybody have any fresher news? I can't seem to find anything newer than last Sunday.

From the Front Lines:
I got this email from the wife of a Bishop of a young-adult congregation in LA. Ben is a member of that congregation.
As additional information for those who missed the news, Mormons have been targeted by the gay community in California as having been the main impetus behind the passing of Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage in the state. Although the population of the state voted on the passing of the constitutional amendment, I will proudly agree that most of footwork was carried out by us. It's funny that our opposition knows where the credit is due, but that's another topic for another day. In light of the gay community's frustration in the passing of the proposition, our temple came under attack. I was at the Los Angeles Temple assisting in the security efforts and it was quite an experience. Our temple is safe and no damage was done on the grounds. It was a sight I never expected to see. At one point we had let in about 20 police vehicles through the gates because they were afraid their vehicles would be damaged as civilian cars were being vandalized. I removed the Utah plates from my truck just so I could drive through the mess and park blocks away. My roommate and I traveled on foot after we had changed out of our dress shirts and ties so as not to be targeted.Two full squads of LAPD in riot gear set up their base inside the temple grounds while SWAT vehicles and hundreds of officers followed the crowds run up Santa Monica and Wilshire Boulevards. I've heard that the crowd was estimated to be over 2,500. When I arrived, all of the gates were shut and a small group of members had to remain outside the grounds as the direction was to turn away others who had come to assist. After about a half an hour two sister missionaries ran up the drive to the East gate. I would have made more jokes with them, asking them trivia questions to prove they were LDS before opening the gate, but they were obviously nervous and had left on their name tags as they wandered the streets. When the crowd turned back towards the temple from West Hollywood, we opened the gate to those members still outside so they would not be trapped in the crowd. The officers inside the temple grounds made a line on the front lawn by the fence. At one point, with 7 news and police helicopters overhead, the crowd began to climb the fence and it looked like there was going to be a lot of trouble. We had it seemed a good forth of a Polynesian ward there so it could have gotten very interesting very fast.With lines of motorcycle cops with sirens wailing up and down the street with the latest outbreak, helicopters continually circling with spotlights cutting through the sky, and the crowd roaring being led my megaphones shouting every synonym they could think of that went along with "evil"...it almost seemed like the very end was at hand. My dad called me every few minutes to give me updates from live news through the Internet because we did not have TVs and the police did not even seem to be informed on the movement of the crowd up and down the streets. I relayed these updates directly to the head of temple security so we could anticipate when to be ready.While I was there, I was not aware of anyone actually breaching the fence, but we were asked to move far across the parking lot as they were anticipating the need to shoot tear gas canisters. I never thought I would see the day when police officers would sit perched on the spire of our temple as lookouts. All of this happened at about 7:30 pm. It should be remembered that most likely many of the law enforcement were not in favor of our stance on Proposition 8, but nevertheless, the men and women were there doing their duty and protecting our property. For that we are grateful. And yes, there was an incident with some of our members who had gone to remove the protest signs from the front fence. One of the protesters did initiate physical contact with one of our sisters so the details are uncertain as to whether the response was fully justified. The lesson to be learned is that it's important to anticipate and avoid such confrontational situations. Remember the world is watching our reaction and the media is everywhere. In the end, when we keep our cool, the video footage speaks the truth regarding which side is really intolerant and appears hateful when we simply do not respond or do so in a loving and controlled manner.In all the commotion, I had the chance to sit alone by the side of one of the fountains and take in all that was happening. It may seem strange to say, but despite the adrenaline rushing in my blood ready for the next incident or next bit of news from my dad; I felt a tremendous peace. It came over me in a wave as I looked up at the spire topped with Angel Moroni. I can testify that I felt the presence of others protecting the temple tonight..those we could not physically see. I would even go as far to say that I felt the presence of someone personally related to me who was there for my safety. We were not alone. We were protected and our Father in Heaven is mindful of our efforts and willingness to withstand persecution. As I later read a quote from Brigham Young, it made more sense why this did not have to be a fearful experience- exciting yes, in a urgency sense, but very clarifying as we were able to glimpse into things as the really are, truth as is really exists, the adversary's war as it really is raging. I wish everyone of you reading this could have been there just to be reminded as I was how real this war is. The great sadness is that so many of our brothers and sisters are unknowing participants, manipulated and deceived by the grand schemer of it all. The issues may be presented as complex, but the adversary's agenda was as clear as day. Be prepared friends and family, it's bound to get much worse before it gets better, but take council from a prophet:
"You that have not passed thro’ the trials and persecutions, and drivings with this people from the beginning, but have only read them, or heard some of them related, may think how awful they were to endure, and wonder that the saints survived them at all.—The thought of it makes your heart sink within you, your brain reel, and your body tremble, and you are ready to exclaim, ‘I could not have endured it.’ I have been in the heat of it, and never felt better in all my life; I never felt the peace and power of the Almighty more copiously poured upon me than in the keenest part of our trials. They appeared nothing to me."-Brigham Young (Deseret News Weekly, 24 Aug. 1854, 83). (L. Aldin Porter, "‘But We Heeded Them Not’," Ensign, Aug 1998, 6)
-Ben

I really like the Brigham Young quote. Totally awesome. Let's keep those prayers going!

The Almighty Liz

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Prop 8 Protesters Targeted the LDS Los Angeles Temple

I got this from my mom in an email today. (she is really on fire lately) I thought everyone should know, since I couldn't really find it in any news. Not locally anyway. Even if you are not of my religious persuasion, I think these people need prayers.
I was shocked that the police are not really doing anything but keeping protesters out of the temple grounds. Are these not hate crimes? Are these people not intent on violence? Silent and peaceful protests are a right everyone should have, but this is way beyond that. There is a personal account I will put up later today, but I'm a little busy right now. Peace, Love and Prayers,
The Almighty Liz

The LDS Temple in Los Angeles was under siege yesterday by 2,000 protesters angry over the Church's role in passing Proposition 8, forcing the closure of the temple. According to reports, a gay activist called the temple saying they would be protesting outside the temple permanently until there is gay marriage.Signs were hung from the fence around the temple and protesters screamed in anger, snarled afternoon rush-hour traffic and said, "This isn't going to stop us.If we do this we have a chance." "We're going to fight it until the world changes," protesters claimed."Shame on you," chanted the protesters. Outside the temple, grafitti was scrawled on the walls and signs hung, "Go back to Utah," and "Go to hell Mormons." Their signs said, "No on H8."Protesters promised to go after the Church's tax-exempt status and harass Mormons who had donated to the cause, listed on a website Mormonsfor8.com. The promise was to make the Mormons pay for their role in the passage of Prop 8.One LDS member in the area said, "I don't quite understand our police response (even though I'm one of the police). If this was happening at a Jewish synagogue or a Catholic church, we would be arresting people for hate crimes. As it is at the moment, protestors are sitting on the walls of the temple and the police are on the grounds inside. Church members in our area were called last night to come down to the stake center and spend the night protecting the building from vandalism -- it's like 150 years ago."To see a news report on these events click here. This was the politics of intimidation and harassment, targeting the LDS church, though many other churches had helped in the effort-and a sample of how the homosexual agenda has spread across the nation. It was like San Francisco mayor, Gavin Newsome, said when he illegally started marrying couples in the city before that America was going to have this whether you like it or not.It will not be about people being able to vote their conscience, or calmly assess the issues and consequences, but about threats and vilification. Other churches who participated in the effort have not been similarly targeted.The LDS Church is, of course, in no danger of losing its tax-exempt status. The only donation made to the campaign according to records was $2,078.97, an expense which covered the travel of church leaders who went to California to meet with the coalition. The Church insists that by law it has the right to speak out on moral issues.Threats from Blogs Target Christians A Worldnetdaily.com article noted that homosexual blogs have been boiling with threats toward Christians. Burn their [blank] churches to the ground, and then tax the charred timbers," wrote "World O Jeff" on a blog. On another website "Tread" wrote, "I hope the No on 8 people have a long list and long knives." On another website, a contributor wrote, "Can someone in CA please go burn down the Mormon temples there, PLEASE. I mean seriously. DO IT." On another website "scottinsf" wrote, "Trust me. I've got a big list of names of mormons and catholics that were big supporters of Prop 8. . As far as mormons and catholics . I warn them to watch their backs." Another blog entry: "If you're planning a heterosexual wedding in California . be prepared for picketers. Designate someone to watch the parking lot . You're going to have lots of unexpected expenses. Add $500 to your budget for security. . Be prepared for the flowers not lasting to the reception or the tuxedos showing up two sizes too small or the music at the reception being a way too loud or the cake tasting a little funny," stated another threat. "Be afraid. Be very afraid. We are everywhere." Thus it continues on and on and Matt Barber, director of cultural affairs for Liberty Counsel called the statements "hate crimes" for their intent to create violence against someone based on their beliefs and called on the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and "other leaders within the homosexual lobby" to call for an end to such threats. Thus, the true colors of some of those who push this agenda are in clear display. It is a kind of domestic terrorism designed to silence and quell anyone who oppose this agenda as it marches through our nation. On the same day, this happened, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, issued a statement calling for mutual civility. "No one on any side of the question should be vilified, intimidated or harassed." Lawsuits against Prop 8 At least three lawsuits have been or are in the process of being filed protesting the passage of Proposition 8. Andy Pugno, attorney for the Protect Marriage coalition said, "The lawsuit filed today by the ACLU and Equality California seeking to invalidate the decision of California voters to enshrine traditional marriage in California 's constitution is frivolous and regrettable. These same groups filed an identical case with the California Supreme Court months ago, which was summarily dismissed. We will vigorously defend the People's decision to enact Proposition 8 . . . "It should also be noted that the ACLU recently made this same "constitutional revision" claim in a nearly identical matter in Oregon and it was unanimously rejected." Family Leader's attorneys agree with this estimation.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Need a Laugh?

I sure did! I got this as an email from my mom this morning. Every so often, she hits the jack pot.

After I retired, my wife insisted that I accompany her on her trips to Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, like most men, I found shopping boring and preferred to get in and get out. Equally unfortunately, my wife is like most women - - she loved to browse. Yesterday my dear wife received the following letter from the local Wal-Mart:
Over the past six months, your husband has been causing quite a commotion in our store. We cannot tolerate this behavior and have been forced to ban both of you from the store. Our complaints against him are listed below and are documented by our video surveillance cameras.
1. June 15: Took 24 boxes of condoms and randomly put them in people's carts when they weren't looking.
2. July 2: Set all the alarm clocks in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals
3. July 7: Made a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the women's? rest-room.
4. July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in an official voice, 'Code 3 in Housewares. Get on it right away.'
5. August 4: Went to the Service Desk and tried to put a bag of M&M's on layaway.
6. August 14: Moved a 'CAUTION - WET FLOOR' sign to a carpeted area.
7. August 15: Set up a tent in the camping department and told other shoppers he'd invite them in if they would bring pillows and blankets from the? bedding department.
8. August 23: When a clerk asked if they could help him he began crying and screamed, 'Why can't you people just leave me alone?'
9. September 4: Looked right into the security camera and used it as a mirror while he picked his nose.
10. September10: While handling guns in the hunting department, he asked the clerk where the antidepressants were.
11. October 3: Darted around the store suspiciously while loudly humming the '? Mission Impossible' theme.
12. October 6: In the auto department, he practiced his 'Madonna look' by using different sizes of funnels.
13. October18: Hid in a clothing rack and when people browsed through, yelled 'PICK ME! PICK ME!'
14. October 21: When an announcement came over the loud speaker, he assumed a fetal position and screamed 'OH NO! IT'S THOSE VOICES AGAIN!'
And last, but not least
15. October 23: Went into a fitting room, shut the door, waited awhile, then yelled? very loudly, 'Hey! There's no toilet paper in here!'??

You're Welcome.
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

DisGUSted!

I know this has been done to death by almost everyone else today, but this is my blog, which gives me the ultimate power to do whatever I want on here. (I mean, is it my World, or what?)
So, we now have Obama as president. I read on somebody else's blog where a person (who obviously voted for the warthog) said something to the effect of if the administration does well, will we all eat crow in four years? I think I replied that the only thing we will all be eating the next four years is cow turds.
I can only remember feeling emotions this strong in a country wide manner once; after 9/11. Don't get me wrong, I have an enormous sense of pride and patriotism for the good ole USofA. This was something more than that, and on that fateful day, I felt for a short time shocked, at a loss, much compassion for the victims, and horribly vulnerable. Quickly after, I felt an overwhelming rage at the people who would dare do something so atrocious, and an overwhelming desire to get them, and make them pay. This feeling has not really diminished all that much over the intervening 7 years, and I believe we have done good things in Iraq to this end, as well as other equally desirable ends.
Today, when I heard it for the first time, on the radio, my overarching desire now is to batten down the hatches. Become as self-sufficient as possible, so if the world ends, I will be prepared. Even if that means learning to garden, lol! Seriously though, I just have this burning and renewed desire to not be dependant on anybody, least of all the government at this juncture.
Am I frightened? Not really. Worried some, sure. However, I, for the first time, have undeniable testimony of what the various Prophets and Presidents of my religion have been teaching for decades; become self-reliant. Get my food storage in. Pay off all unnecessary debt. Be prepared financially for all things, especially the end of all things as we know it. I hate to get preachy, but look at what we just elected for the leader of our country. If that's not a sign of the times, I'd hate to see a real one.
The Almighty Liz

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween!!

Well, how's was everyone's Halloween? Ours was great!! Not only did we have our awesome Haunted Treasure Hunt party at our house, but we had a Trunk or Treat with our fabulous new Ward at church, Jonni got to go on her very first field trip this week to a pumpkin farm and she had her very first Halloween parade at school (I forgot my camera!!), and apparently our neighborhood is the place to trick or treat in town. Seriously, John took the kids whilst I stayed home to man the fort, and I barely got to sit down, the doorbell rang so much! I actually ran out of candy. In an hour. And I wasn't givin' it away by the handful either. Once I saw how many kids were out there, I was only giving a piece or two at a time. I've never ran out before, much less in that short a time! Also, John said the whole neighborhood really gets into it. Lots of decorations, and tons of people out on their porches to hand out candy, instead of inside their houses. Needless to say, when the kids got home from their forays, their little trick or treat pumpkins were super heavy and overflowing. So much fun!! (and OHHHH, the candy rush!!) I did manage to get a few pics of the eventful evening, and the pumpkins we carved this year.

Here's the pumpkin Jonni got to bring home from her field trip to the farm. John helped her carve it.
Here's the pumpkin John brought home from work. They had a pumpkin carving contest, isn't that cool? We so love his new job. The pumpkin was supposed to be a scary leech-like alien thing, but I think it turned out being a happy looking smiley face. Funny!

Here's Jonni in her costume; she was a bat. I made the costume myself, despite having no sewing skills whatsoever. My friend Elise did help sew on one of the wings with her sewing machine, but everything else was me.


Here they both are, triumphant in their spoils. Erik wanted to be a pumpkin monster. I let him pick out everything in his costume. It was the easiest I've ever done. Sweat suit and mask. I love that kid.
So, I hope everyone had as good a Halloween as we did. John is already planning for next year. With this enthusiastic a neighborhood, he's brewing elaborate plans indeed. Good times for all!
The Almighty Liz




Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Halloween Party!!

This last Saturday we had our Halloween Party, and I will just go out on a limb here to say that fun was had by all! John and I had a blast running around trying to make sure everything went smoothly, and the adults had a good time hanging out at the house and/or watching their children try to find the buried treasure on the haunted trail and house. I got some pictures even! John has some up on his blog too, along with his version of events, and for some more click here to get to Timpani's blog; http://quisandvance.blogspot.com/
This is how it went;
The kids arrived and I gave them the first clue; a piece of a treasure map. They had to use that piece to find the other pieces hidden in the graveyard (our backyard) and other places to find the witch that would tell them where they needed to go and who to talk to in order to find the treasure, while avoiding the Grim Reaper who was making his rounds in the field behind the graveyard. They then had to then go through the haunted house (our garage) by passing through the mad scientist's laboratory (our library) to get to the ghost who hid the treasure who would then tell them where he buried it. The kids did pretty well with only marginal help from adults. Meanwhile, the adults kicked back and had some dinner in the house (not the haunted part). I made chili (which everyone but Todd thought was too hot!) and potato soup. It was loads of good fun, although if we do it next year, I won't be feeding everyone again. Too much work on top of all the other preparations!! And now for the pics!

This is John after all the activity. He looks a little tired and sweaty doesn't he? I can't imagine why....
This is just a random picture after the kids found and opened the treasure, which resulted in a candy frenzy. This is when everyone settled in their own little spaces to eat and enjoy the spoils. Here's Renae. What a ham!
My sister, Virginia. Isn't she cute?

Her husband Apollo, and their new baby, Lark. Two hams in one house was almost too much...

More random enjoyment of the booty.

Here's Trent on the right and Todd on the left in their costumes.

Here's Todd again. I did the make-up, and had a blast doing it. It's my first time ever doing any one's make-up too. Didn't I do great? His own sister as well as his mother didn't recognize him. His mom saw the picture and said "So who was this?" I took that pic as well. I am just the BEST!


So that concludes the Great Sever Haunted Treasure Hunt. We had a blast doing it, and I hope everyone had a blast attending!!
The Almighty Liz

Friday, October 17, 2008

Seriously Awesome Week

Have I said how much I love our new area yet? Because, man, do I LOVE our new town!
I have gotten to do all these things just this week;
Had a super good weekend to myself (see prior post).
Got to have a girls' night out with a neighbor. (we went to a really good restaurant where her husband works, although he was off that night watching their kids, and we got our extremely tasty-but expensive-meal for FREE.)
Had one set of John's aunts and uncles over for dinner. (Reid and Marsha-we laughed all night long)
Had one of my new friends from church volunteer to scrub my floors for me, since after all the other house work I did this week, I just couldn't muster the energy. We also went to story time at the library, and our kids played most of the day together, and had a blast. (thanks Elise! The floors look stellar, and you are the alltime BEST!)
John got a RAISE. (just the yearly one that everyone gets, and not huge or anything, but still ultra cool)
Jonni has her first loose tooth.
And we still have a Halloween party for all our nieces and nephews (biological and honorary) tomorrow to look forward to!
Seriously, I just don't think life gets any better! Anything better than this is just bonus at this point, for real. (not that I will turn down bonuses. That would make me a loser, and I think everyone agrees that I'm as far from a loser as you can get)
The Almighty Liz

Monday, October 13, 2008

My Weekend

Well, my weekend was not what I expected, but it sure was fun! I was supposed to go camping with my entire in-law family, but I got a cold at the beginning of last week, and so opted to not go, even though I was feeling just fine by the weekend. I didn't want to tempt fate! John decided to take the kids and go without me, so I was then faced with a whole weekend to myself? What's a girl to do...?
Well, I'll tell you. The fam left at four o'clock on Friday afternoon. And first let me tell you that I called everyone I could think of to hang out, and everyone was busy. So, Friday I went and test drove cars. Do you know, that was a lot of fun? I'm mainly doing research for when our car finally throws in the towel, so I don't have to scramble and do everything last minute. There was this one sweet little Jeep Grand Cherokee...but I won't go into details. It was painful enough to leave it at the dealership. :)
I was then going to eat dinner and go shopping, but after eating dinner, I decided I was too tired. So instead I rented a few movies, watched one, and went to bed early. Oh! I also talked to my best friend, Mary, for a bit before the movie. I just don't get to talk to her near enough these days. (Love you!)
On Saturday, after a blissful night's sleep, (no husband stealing my covers, no daughter getting me up at 2 am to tell me her bed is "messed up", ect ect), I woke, had breakfast, and decided to go shopping. I was having dinner at a friend's later that evening, and so decided to call and tell her I wouldn't call right before I left like I had planned, and wasn't sure when I would make it out to her place. Well, lo and behold, her plans for the day got cancelled, (or rather, her husband's did, and he was gracious enough to take the kids off her hands so she could come out and play), so I got a shopping buddy! Before I went over to her place, I had lunch at my favorite fast food place; Lion's Choice. I did it because I'm the only one that likes that place, ergo, I never get to eat there. Mmmm, it was soooooo good. There were some major fall sales going on when we go to the mall too, so we totally cleaned up. I don't have to go shopping for a long time now. Woohoo! We then went back to her house, ordered pizza, watched chic flix (much to her husband's dismay...sorry Erik! I didn't know when I rented them you would be watching them too!), and ate some cheesecake I purchased from our little grocery around the corner. The one with the pies to die for. Their cheesecake is very much on par with the pies. (and I am sure I gained 10 lbs in just that one evening)
Sunday was just lazy, waiting for the fam to get home. All in all though, a really good, stress relieving few days. I missed my kids and my hubby, but it was nice to have some time to myself too. To not have to be somebody's mama, somebody's wife, cook, maid, ect ect ect. To just be a girl for awhile was exceedingly nice. ;)
The Almighty Liz
ps everybody had a great time at the campout too. John took some pics on our camera phone that I would love to post, but I have no idea how to get them from the phone to the computer. Any suggestions?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Little Pleasures

My son is sitting in the next room singing "If You're Happy and You Know It" as loud as he can.
It's fall, and that's the season my husband and I started dating. He always says, "Every fall, I fall in love with you all over again." It will be eleven years since that time on October 11th, and I still love it.
We were not only ready in time for the bus this morning, we had time to spare because my husband fed the kids breakfast, and let me sleep in an extra ten minutes.
My husband says I can go grocery shopping tonight without the children.
There is an excellent piece of banana cream pie waiting for me to eat tonight after my children are in bed.
Seriously, it's the little things in life that bring true happiness, don't you think?
The Almighty Liz

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Soliciting Advice

So, I'm trying to potty train my 2 year old. He will be 3 at the end of November. He is not really interested. I bought some pull-ups (to make things easier on me), and he actually cried when I put the first one on. He's doing a little better about it now, but really, I'm not sure how to proceed. Any suggestions from all you old hat mom's who know what you're doing? This is only my second attempt, and my first with a boy. Everyone told me boys would be easier, but so far that is not panning out so much. I'm not completely at my wits' end yet, but this is so much different than Jonni, my girl, that I just don't know how to start really! Anyway, lots of comments people! I need a plan!
The Almighty Liz
P.S. The car is still running just fine.
And we are almost all well. John and Erik are sickest. When does THAT happen? Never.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Hooray! A New Post!

So, maybe I overdid things a little in my life, and I got sick. For over a week. Live and learn, right? This is what I did to overdo:
I worked out on Saturday a week ago. A real good one too. Lifting, and the exercise bike. Then we had some friends over for a birthday. That was loads of fun. I went errand running with the wife of the family (Timpani) which including mundane things like groceries, and fun things like finding a present for my dad, whose birthday party we were attending the next day. That took three hours, and then we went back home and had dinner, and then banished the kids downstairs to watch a movie, and indulged in birthday cheesecake. (**side note** our little mom and pop grocery store is just around the corner from us, and they make the best pies and cheesecake ever. We are going to get sooooo fat) We rounded the evening off by cleaning up the vomit of our friends' little girl. Our house did not agree with her, apparently. We'll have to try again soon though. You never know, she might have outgrown her allergy by then.

I woke up Sunday feeling just a bit low, but I figured, hey, I've been doing so well, I'm not going to worry about it. We went to my dad's B-day party, and had a good time. I ended up making him a shirt, sort of. I couldn't come up with any really good ideas, so Timpani and I sort of just wandered around every store in town for awhile, waiting for inspiration to hit. I found a little owl patch. (my dad collects owls because of a boyscout thing called Woodbadge, or something like that. The owl was his group's totem animal) I thought, hmmm, I could sew this to something, and that would make an okay present. So I began looking at things, and since my dad also loves to barbeque, I thought an apron would be good. Those are way pricey, so then I thought a nice polo shirt would also work well, so that's what I went with. I chose navy blue because it looks good on my dad, and he doesn't have a whole lot of that color in his wardrobe. It turns out blue is his Woodbadge group's color too, so that worked out super great! He liked the shirt, and I forced him to put it on so I could take a picture. He hates having his pic taken with a fierce and undying passion, so this proves he really does love me. We had a good time at the party, and came home a little late, but not too bad.

I woke up on Monday feeling atrocious. Sore throat, cough, horribly congested...I was miserable. No fever though, so that was super good. That usually means it's not a Rheumatic Fever relapse. I just felt like a three day old corpse for all of last week. Erik got it for a day, and John came down with it yesterday, but I am definitely on the mend. Instead of a corpse, now I only feel like a wrung out dishrag. Definitely an improvement. Oh, and Jonni has an ear infection. Didn't burst her eardrum this time, so thank all that is holy for small miracles.

Whilst we were at my parents' for the party, I had my brother in law snap a couple of family pictures of our little branch for a school assignment of Jonni's. I thought they turned really stinkin' good, and I'm gonna send it to Wally world and get a bigger print and frame it and stick it on my wall. I put the best shot in this post so you all can see. It took him about five minutes with my little point and shoot camera. He really has some talent in this area don't you think?
So, all in all, that was my last week and half. Oh, and the car is still running just fine. *sigh*
The Almighty Liz
Our super good family picture. Don't we all look great? That's a no make-up shot for me too.
Here's my dad, isn't he adorable? He was such a good sport to let me snap this shot, and he even looks happy! (he's so not though. About the picture I mean)

Friday, September 5, 2008

Mechanics!

This is my new swear word. When I stub my toe, I'm going to shout "mechanics!" When a car cuts me off in traffic endangering not only myself, but my children, I'm going to curse them with "mechanics!" When my children are driving me to distraction, I'm going scream "mechanics, mechanics, MECHANICS!"
You all know of course, if you've been reading faithfully, that our car broke. I dutifully called around to all the ward members in my immediate area, and found a couple of good candidates to fix it. One was about 15 minutes away, and couldn't get around to the car for two, maybe three days. The other was 5 minutes down the road, and could, they said, fit us in, and have the problem diagnosed by the end of the day. We have a winner, I thought. So, when John came home for lunch, we ran the car up to their place, and dropped it off. We'll call you in a couple of hours and tell you what's wrong. Sweet, I said, and went back home. That was quarter after noon.
By four thirty, we had heard nothing. I called them. They still hadn't got to it, they would call us in a few minutes. They never called back that night.
I called the next morning. The receptionist didn't know, and the mechanic was out. She would call in a few minutes and let me know. That was 9 am. I called at 1:30, and she said she still didn't know, she'd call back in a few minutes. (are you seeing a pattern here?) I called back at five, and was put on hold for 10 minutes. She finally came back on like she was answering the phone. She had forgotten I was there. Oh yes, she said, just one moment and I'll ask the mechanic. To her credit, she didn't forget me a second time. She came back and said that they had driven it, but it wasn't acting up for them, could they keep it a third day? Why not? I thought. It's not like I'm going to have THEM fix it, I might as well get it diagnosed.
The next day, I called, and was told that the mechanic was running errands, she would call me back in (you guessed it) a few minutes. 9 am again. I called them at four thirty, and she said they couldn't find anything wrong with it, and I could come pick it up anytime, they closed at six. Three days ladies and gentlemen, to find out that they couldn't find the problem. At least they didn't charge me, but I will assuredly be using the other candidate soon to actually find out, I hope, what's wrong with my car.
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Fun Labor Day, With One, Maybe Two, Thorns

Well, we had a great weekend for the most part. We went to a ward picnic/party on Friday night, and guess what? Everyone is nice. I still just can't get over how everyone walks up and says hi, and introduces themselves, and seems genuinely happy to have you there. It's so cool.
Saturday was just a lazy day. We got some stuff around the house done, and went to the pool, and when we got home, Jonni was running a monster fever, (and this is Jonni, not Erik. Jonni never gets sick) So we ate dinner quickly, and gave her some medicine, and sent her to bed. She didn't even complain. It was way spooky.
She was fine on Sunday though, but we stayed home from church just in case. (or, everyone else did. I haven't made it to church yet) We had another lazy day. We went for a walk, met a really nice neighbor. That was about it.
John's folks and a brother and sister came over Monday, Labor day, and we headed out to Fisher Cavern, which is one cave down from Meremac (sp?) Caverns. The tour of the cave was an hour and a half, so I was going to sit it out while everyone else went, but we were going to have a picnic and it was going to be a great day. We were almost to the cave when we started having car trouble. Yes, our car is broken. We still had a fun picnic, everyone still did the cave, (although John sat it out with me so I wouldn't be lonely, what a guy), and it was still a good day. We did get the car home, thank all that is holy, so we didn't have to tow it. It's in the shop now, and we're waiting to hear what's wrong with it. We have two payments left on it, and this is the first really serious problem we've ever had with it, so that's really good. However, the next car I get is going to be one that lasts beyond getting paid off. In the meantime, I'm home bound. I hate being home bound. For most of my life, I've thought of myself as a homebody. But ya know what? After not having a car for over three years, and not being able to go anywhere with one and then two kids, I've found that I loathe not having the freedom to go places. And I like going places. Fear not! I will fix this. I AM the Almighty Liz.
When we got home, John's other sister and her family were there. They decided to stop by on a whim, and we all had a blast! It was great fun having everyone here to play.
Jonni got some glasses a week ago. There is a horribly long, irritating, enraged story that goes behind the stupidity that was acquiring these glasses that I'm not going to go into here, just rest assured it was beyond painful. She had them four, count 'em four days, and she lost them on the playground at school. Didn't even realize they were gone till she got off the bus at home. I called the office, and they had found them, but, they said, they're "a little bent". Hmmmm, I thought to myself, well, a little bent is workable. We got them back yesterday, and yeah. Not a little bent, but completely, irreparably bent. And the lenses are cracked and scratched up. So, new glasses for Jonni. ARGH!
Other than that though, we had a good Labor Day weekend.
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Few Funny Stories, and a Plug

The plug is for my friend Erik. Not my son, my son's namesake. He got a new blog! We are totally taking over the world people, get on the bandwagon quick! Here's the address if y'all want to take a looky-loo:
http://ldsiberophonicninjagamernerd.blogspot.com/
Jonni's been in school for a week and a half now. She comes home everyday with something, and sometimes several somethings, new she's learned. A few days ago, or maybe it was yesterday, I can't remember, we were driving around town. We do this frequently, trying to get to know our new hometown, and find important stuff, like the post office. Jonni started counting, and she got to 115. I thought this was very impressive. She needed very little help to get that far, and we never flat out told her what the next number was, just helped her figure it out on her own. Later, I asked her if she learned that at school, since she's been learning so much. "No," she replies, "I just wanted to see how high I could count." That's m'girl.
We are having a smallish problem with Jonni going to school, in that Erik is very disappointed that he isn't. Almost everyday he comes up with a new tactic; at first it was tears and fits. Then he asked and asked and asked, and I just patiently (and then less patiently as time wore on) explained that he was too little. The next day he spent a significant amount of time trying to convince me he was six. Today he just boldly announced that he was going, end of story. I again explained that no, he couldn't go yet, he wasn't old enough. Jonni piped up that yeah, he was too little, and she gets to go because she's firstborn. With no thought at all, Erik shot back "Oh yeah? Well I get to go grocery shopping!!"
Man I love my kids.
The Almighty Liz

Sunday, August 24, 2008

First Week of Kindergarten Updates!

Okay, I realize that I've been seriously remiss about posting this week. After all, this was a super big week for our little family. Jonni's first week in kindergarten! All I can say in my defense is that I have been beyond exhausted this week. Getting up at quarter to eight is kind of killing me. But enough about that! Let's get to the good stuff;
So you all know that I've been giving myself ulcers worrying about how this was going to go. My beautiful daughter has kind of a fit-throwing nature, and coupled with a shy streak ten miles wide, leaving her with strangers, or even people she knows reasonably well, can oftentimes be...difficult. Doing new things is also something she doesn't handle well. A good description would be "slow to warm up". So we were expecting her to do about a million new things, from getting up at a totally different time, to transportation, to spending the entire day with someone she'd met once. I really wasn't looking forward to this, not to mention the fact that I would have to get up with her. I've never been a morning person (much to my mother's chagrin). Lay on top the fact that I've been ill this year, and am still recovering, which translated means I still sleep a lot, I just didn't know how on Earth I was going to be physically able to do this! Well, my smart husband gave Jonni and I blessings the night before, and immediately we all felt better. Of course, I still had my misgivings, but do or die, we were past the point of no return.
Monday dawned, and just a little later, my alarm clock went off. I cannot express the enormous amount of will power it took to peel myself off my bed, but I did it. I even managed to portray some semblance of alertness, and made the kids breakfast. Whilst they were eating, I showered. After the shower, I quickly decided that showering would be a nighttime thing from now on, that way I could sleep an extra fifteen minutes. (*side note* this was the first time in our marriage that I was up before John went to work. He said it was ultra weird to have everyone up while he was getting ready for work, but nice) I got Jonni and Erik dressed. I had some fore site, and had packed Jonni's lunch and her backpack the night before. Genius on my part, I think if I had had to do it on that fateful Monday, I would've cracked. I got us out to the bus stop, two houses down from us, in plenty of time. Jonni so far had been bouncy with happiness and excitement, but here was the first real test. She had to actually leave me behind, and get on the bus her own self, by herself. The bus pulled up, and I literally held my breath. I told her that I would follow the bus, so when she got off at the school, I would be there to help her find her classroom. Jonni gave me a hug, a kiss on the cheek, and (here it comes! The first fit!I thought) got on the bus with a grin. No problems whatsoever. She found a window seat, and waved to me, smiling, as the bus drove away. A miracle!, I whispered fervently to myself. But no time to dwell, I had to book it back to the car and throw Erik in his car seat, and somehow beat the bus, and park, and get Erik out, and get to the school where the bus drops off the kids before Jonni got off. And I did it. I had to park a couple of blocks away, and pick Erik up in my arms, and walk as fast as I could, and somehow manage to not pass out, but I did it. Another miracle! (for those of you who don't know, this recovery also means I am hideously weak right now. Much better than a couple of months ago, or even a couple of weeks ago, (thanks to "let's get svelte!"), but still nowhere near normal) I even had to wait on the bus! Hallelujah. Now here it comes, I thought. The real test. The biggie. Jonni now has to enter school, and be left behind with her teacher and a room full of strange kids. She got off the bus. She's still smiling and happy and excited. Number three miracle. We walked down the halls of the school, and finally arrived at the classroom. I took her aside at the door. "Here it is, and I can do this tomorrow too, walk you to your door. I can do this all this week." Jonni stepped inside the door, and pulled me with her, and gave me another hug, and a kiss on the cheek, and said "No, you don't have to do this again mommy. Love you, bye!", and walked off to greet her teacher. I stood there for a moment, completely and utterly dumbfounded at miracle number four, the biggest of them all. Her teacher caught my eye, and said "She seems fine, you can go now." I shook myself, gave her a slightly sheepish smile, and walked out, and to my car. And here's miracle number five; I felt fine. I even felt excited! I had a whole day, and no Jonni! Now, I love, adore and cherish my daughter, but she's not what you would call an easy child. She takes up a LOT of attention, and makes it nie unto impossible to get anything done, let alone any kind of lengthy project. Erik is the complete opposite. He likes to play by himself. He likes to play with other people too, ah heck, he's just a happy kid doing whatever. Having just Erik is almost like being by yourself. An entirely different vista unfolded before my mind's eye. I had days and days filled with no Jonni. The sheer amount of things I could get done in just one day was staggering. I made it home full of hope, and yes, happy. Tired to the point of nausea, but happy.
The rest of the week has gone just the same. Jonni is still over the moon about kindergarten, I've accomplished more this week than in the past two months, and we're slowly but surely adjusting to the early morning schedule. Another benefit of no Jonni during the day is I can take actual naps. Jonni has never, ever been a naptaker, or a very good sleeper overall, but Erik always has been. So I can nap during the day. I wouldn't be able to make it otherwise, I'd be dead. So we start a new week, and I'm excited to meet it. My fitness blog is also doing well (if you want to join it, you have only to send me your email, and I'll send you an invite. Or you can do what one other so far is doing, and just post your workouts in the comments) and is helping me tremendously in the getting in shape department. We still love our new town, our new house, and John's new job. I think that next week I might actually be able to make it to Church on Sunday, something I haven't been able to do since April. (I've been trying for two weeks now, and I'm getting closer to being able to get up in time) Overall, life is very, very sweet.
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My Baby

Okay, I am officially FREAKING OUT. Now, I do believe I've done well up to this point. I've gone supply shopping and not a blip on the monitor. I've talked to Jonni about strangers, and felt no anxiety. I talked to her about teachers and classroom rules and being nice to the other kids and getting on the bus, and everything that goes with this new phase we are barrelling towards, and felt just fine. But last night we attended Jonni's kindergarten round-up, and suddenly it hit me; my baby, my little girl, my Jonni is going into KINDERGARTEN. I will not only have to change my entire routine, which I knew and was pretty much braced for, but I won't get to see her for a huge portion of the day. I thought I was good with this, I felt prepared, even fleetingly happy to have her off my hands for long periods of time. (For those of you who don't know, my girl is just a bit...difficult. Strong-willed is a good description.) However, I didn't think about the fact that that meant someone else was going to be responsible for her. I don't know this silly teacher from Adam! Or Eve! How do I know she's nice? How do I know she'll just let Jonni be for a few weeks 'cause Jonni gets super shy and won't talk for a long time? How do I know if she's competent? What the heck am I thinking, handing over my precious little girl to a building full of strangers who could all be child molesters, as far as I know? And handing her off to a bus. Just let someone else drive her around?? But the worst is, and this is what I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around, is that there is no going back. Can you believe it? Now she's in school, and she's no longer even remotely my baby. She's a KID. A bonefide dyed-in-the-wool kid. Can I handle this? Can I handle all this responsibility and growing-up stuff now? I still can't even get up before ten in the morning, now I need to have my child up and clothed and fed and teeth brushed and all her school stuff packed and on the bus by 8:25am?? What was I thinking here? Having kids I mean. I really thought I could handle this? This horrible wrenching letting go crap? Ugh. Never mind.
If you think this is bad, you should have seen me last night after the round-up. *shudder*
The Almighty Liz

Monday, August 11, 2008

Extra! Extra! I've Got a New Blog! Read All About It!

Okay, I said I would do this awhile ago, but I didn't because I was sort of waiting to get an exercise bike. Well, guess what?! I got one!! So now I'm launching my new fitness blog! I will be invited many people to join me soon. (I'm just waiting for John to get home to show me how) The rules? Simple: every time you work out, post it. I go into more detail in my very first post on "Let's get SVELTE!", so go ahead and visit me there. I will put a link with all my others to the right there on this blog. I'm super excited, and I hope you guys will join me when I invite you. I think this will be a great way to get in shape together, even though we are all flung out across the country. I also think it will be a great resource to find new ways to work out, to pool all our knowledge in one place. So let's do it people. Let's support each other. Let's get SVELTE!
The Almighty Liz

Monday, August 4, 2008

Breaking Dawn (no spoilers though!)

So, as most of you out there know, if you're loyal fans at all to the Almighty Liz, the fourth book in the Stephenie Meyer Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn, came out this last Saturday.
I loved it.
I couldn't put it down. John took the kids to his sister's on Saturday night, and stayed over through Sunday, and so I could blissfully concentrate all of my attention on the book. I would look at the clock, and with a shocking jolt realize that four hours had passed, and I really ought to eat something. I made a pact with myself that I would stop at midnight, because I need my rest still, and I couldn't. I completely blew through midnight without noticing. I finished the book that night. It was awesome. The perfect ending to Bella's story, and the perfect opening to another character's beginning.
I came down to Earth with a thud when I started reading other's blogs on Sunday and the vast majority of these people hated the book. Someone's even having a book burning party. Another someone applied the word barf to the book. Inconceivable. Incomprehensible!
I am not saying that these people have no right to their opinion. Of course they do. I just totally, completely do not get it. At all. I'm speechless and horrified.
The only point to this is, if you hear the book is crap, I would advise reading it for yourself. (after you read the first three of course, because nothing would make sense in the fourth if you didn't) I thought it was delightful. And I don't care who thinks I'm a crazy sop.
The Almighty Liz

Friday, August 1, 2008

Various Catch-up, and Granted Requests

So once again we've been busy here in my little family. I do love that we have such a great social life now that we've moved back to where people love us, but man oh man! I was a bit worn out after last week, so we took this week off to recuperate. We've had visitors, (including my visiting teachers who came and cleaned my house; Floris and Michelle you guys rock!), but they have come to us, and we haven't done a darn thing we didn't want to do. Here's the sum-up:
In the past couple of weeks, we went to the zoo with John's friend Brad. It was a great time, we really like Brad. He's very witty and hilarious, as well as thoughtful and generous. I loved watching my husband have fun with his old friend! I'll put some pics up for that too here in a second. Brad took the pics, as we are having technical difficulty with ours.
My niece, Wren, had her fifth birthday! My sister threw her a big party at the local water park, and the girls had a blast! They even had a kiddy pool, so Erik and I hung out there and had our own little boy fun. Erik and I had to leave early though, because, (we found out later), Erik had caught a crazy summer virus that is really rare. It affects your ribcage cartilage, making it swell painfully, and you run insanely high fevers. We went to my mom's house to wait for Jonni (my sister kindly offered to watch her and drop her at mom's when everyone else went home so she didn't have to miss out), and by the time we got there, Erik's temperature was over 103! He continued to run super high fevers until we got him to the doctor later that week. (he already had an appointment) This is where we found out what he had because, my doctor, Michael Mulligan, is a genius. The virus lasts about a week (six days for us), and then poof! It's gone with no lasting effects. Weird huh? And not so good for mommy's nerves.
After that is when we decided to take some time off, and stay home for awhile. It's been super nice, and like I said, we've had company, so we haven't gotten too bored. We've also been swimming, and I'm getting better! Still at four laps, but two of those laps were simultaneous, meaning I didn't rest in between!! That is a super huge improvement. We also went to the library for the first time this week, and got us a library card! The library is about the smallest I've ever seen I think. But you can order stuff online, and the kids were super happy with their selection, so I think this will work out fine.
Speaking of books, someone requested I reveal what books I like in my last post, so I'll just go ahead and do so here. Sorry it took so long, Bre!
One of my favorite books is In Summer Light. I totally can't remember who the author is, and I can't find it since the move, I'm sorry! But it's an amazing book. The author's ability to paint word pictures is stellar.
I of course love the Harry Potter series. JK Rowling is a genius.
I love the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyers as well. She also wrote The Host, which is right up there with Twilight, New Moon and Eclipse. (Breaking Dawn is coming out tomorrow!! WooHooooo!!!)
Mecedes Lackey is also a favorite author of mine. She writes fantasy. Fred Saberhagen and his Dracula books are also good. He takes the classic story, and gives birth to a whole series written from Vlad's point-of-view. Very good reads. I also love James Herriot's books. They are awesome. He was a country vet in England in the 1930's, and he turns a phrase better than just about anybody. Those are some good ones to look up at your library. If they don't have 'em, order 'em, seriously, they're really good.
Those are just a few of my faves, but basically I will read anything just about. Anybody feel free to share your faves, because, as any avid reader will tell you, I'm always on the lookout for something good!
Alright, I'll wrap up with a few pics from our zoo outing. (thanks again Brad!) Until next time!
The Almighty Liz


This is Jonni next to the baby Orangutan. He was being super cute. There were ants, and he just couldn't figure them out!
Here's one of everybody but Brad, who was taking the picture. John's the crazy looking one, Brad's daughter Emily is next to him, with Erik next to her. Brad's son Peyton is in the black shirt, and then Jonni is in the foreground. That's my elbow there on the left; I'm sitting in a wheelchair. Wheelchairs are, by the way, mortifying. But it was worth the day at the Zoo.

Here are some of the local animals in their natural habitat. Aren't they cute?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Tagged Again!

Well, once again I have been Tagged. By Emily this time. Geez, I must be a popular girl!! So, here is some more opportunity to get to know me a little bit better. The only reason I'm doing this again is for all you people out there. I know how much you cherish every little bit of information about me, so I try to oblige where I can. Here we go!

"I've Been Tagged" Rules: Answer these 8 questions and tag 5 people.

1. What was I doing 10 years ago?
Um, let's see, I was nineteen...so I was just enrolling and getting ready to start my first semester of college, and I do believe I was still the head cook at the cafeteria in our County Courthouse. John and I had been dating roughly a year, more or less.
2. Five things on my to do list?
A. Get well.
B. Get Jonni's school supplies. (as soon as her school mails me the list)
C. Exercise.
D. Eat better.
E. Take omnipresent meds.
3. Snacks I enjoy?
My favorite all-time snack is Chex Mix. Mmmm, I can totally eat a whole big bag by myself. And anything chocolate. Of course.
4. If I were a Billionaire what would I do?
Pay off all of my debt, and maybe help some family members with theirs. Build mine and John's dream home. Never work again. (for John) Give a hefty amount to Fast Offerings at church. Finish School. (all three degrees that I want, maybe four. Culinary, Psychology, Profiling, and Dental Assisting.) See the World, gosh darn it!!! Especially the ocean. Any ocean.
5. Three Bad Habits?
I chew my cuticles incessantly. I'm the worst procrastinator on the planet. I stay up too late far too often. (and my husband says not eating breakfast is one)
6. Places I've lived?
Illinois, and for the past couple of months, Missouri. (I am super exciting, huh?)
7. Five jobs I've had?
Fast food. I worked at a veterinary clinic doing all the gross dirty jobs no one wants to do. I was head cook at a cafeteria. I worked in a latch-key program for the YMCA. Then I was a Dental Assistant before I was a Mom.
8. Five things many people don't know about me?
I think the left side is evil. (to the point where I will do silly things like put my left shoe on first so I end on the right, not the left) I'm terrified of bridges. I think teeth are neat-o. I'm actually dang shy, but getting good at hiding it. I have one blue eye, and one that is three-quarters brown, and one quarter blue.

Well ladies and gents, that's it for now. (and I don't care who tags me, I'm not doing this again for awhile. I feel like a big braggart) I'll be posting something more soon that has to do with what I've actually been up to lately. Sorry I haven't been posting, I know how hard that is on everyone. We've just been uber busy here in the our little household, and I've been uber worn out. (there was some sickness there too. nothing too bad for me, but Erik was mighty sick last week. more on that later) I hope you enjoyed your little tidbits about myself, so until next time, keep your eye on the sky (it's been super rainy here), and your feet on the ground!
The Almighty Liz
PS and I'm not tagging anybody else. I tagged just about everyone I know the last time.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I'm It!

Alright, I, the Almighty Liz, have been tagged. Thanks Colista! Now you get to learn some interesting and tasty tidbits about me. Thank Colista, it was her idea.

Okay here are the rules: You link back to the person who tagged you, Post these rules on your blog, Share six unimportant things about yourself & Tag six random people at the end of your entry. Let the tagged people know by leaving a comment on their blogs. Enjoy the results!

1. I'm shamefully gullible. Seriously. I can never, ever tell if someone is yanking my chain. Ever. It's highly dangerous, as well as excruciatingly embarrassing.

2. I have a great head for stupid facts. Like did you know that a giraffe has the exact same number of vertebrae in their neck that a human does? That's right, eight. They're just huge. But ask me something of importance, something you need to know in your everyday life, like how to clean an oven, and I have no idea. (well, I didn't until my awesome friend Timpani cleaned mine for me a few weeks ago, and let me watch. It wasn't as hard as I thought it should be. Right Timpani? ;) But it was really gross.)

3. I have been in love with my husband since I met him, when I was nine.

4. I think baby giggles are the best thing on Earth.

5. I love books. Give me a rainy day, a blanket and a good, thick book, (and the chance to read it away from my children) and I am a very happy girl.

6. I love to cook. I haven't had the energy to do much of it lately, but someday I hope to open my own restaurant where I will cook. After I get a culinary degree maybe. But I'll need a pastry chef, 'cause I can't bake worth beans. Too fiddley. If you put just a little too much of some ingredient, or cook it at a little too high or low of a temperature, you can fix it if you're cooking. If you're baking, whatever-it-is is just ruined.

Man, that was harder than I thought. I'm pretty much just a what you see is what you get kinda gal! I do hope you enjoyed this little trip into my psyche though!
I now tag Mary, Dana, Ondrea, Trisha, Andrea, and Brad! Get goin' guys!
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Warp Speed!

Well, if I had known that moving back to my hometown area would include living life in the fast lane...I still totally would have done it! I think I'm actually enjoying it, lol! Let me tell you about the past week;
Last Wednesday I went to spend time with my best friend, Mary, who's husband was out of town for a few days. We had a great time. We went to my mother-in-law's to swim with my kids' cousins (who were there while their mom was in the hospital delivering their new sibling) who threw me a birthday party! They apparently felt bad that their new baby brother was born on my birthday, and so they didn't get to celebrate with me. They made me cookies and popcorn, I was greeted with a "Welcome Liz" sign (only that "Z" was backwards, so cute!) at the door, and we had balloons too! We went swimming, and it was a great party! Thanks Lydia, Ross and Mark! You guys are the best!
After the party, we made brownies and cookies at Mary's house, and watched Annie. Jonni was adamant that she was just going to HATE Annie because it "wasn't a kids' movie", so of course she spent the entire movie glued to the tv. She loved it of course! Silly girl. The next morning we had some girl time, (which Erik endured really well) and did nails and make-up, and the girls dressed up in pretty dresses. It was a blast! My friend Becca came over and joined in as well. Good stuff.
The next day, John and I went to Peoria. Can I describe to you how much I wanted to throw up just driving back to that place? I knew I loved our new home, but I hadn't realized to what extent that place revolted me. We had to go, because there were minor repairs and such that needed done before we can put the house on the market. We stayed Friday and Saturday, and boy oh boy, was I glad to come back home. (*note* to all my friends in Peoria, and you know who you are, I love you. I just hate Peoria.)
We stayed the night at a friends' house, where the kids had spent the day having a blast with Vance and Quisqueya (sorry about that spelling E&T!!), and went to my new niece's blessing on Sunday. That's Virginia and Apollo's new daughter, Lark. She was absolutely adorable in her blessing outfit that her Grandma W. made her, and she didn't fuss or cry or anything during the blessing! So very precious!
We slept in our own beds that night for the first time in almost a week, and it was heavenly! The next day, however, saw us once again driving across the river to a party at John's parent's house for Brad! This is John's very oldest friend that we have recently reunited with. He's in town for a couple of weeks with his children visiting family, and boy are we glad he is! Especially John! He's been practically giddy waiting for his friend to get here!! We had a lot of fun getting to know Brad again, and meeting his kids. They are coming to our house tonight, and I do believe we are going ditch exploring. More on that later.
My friend Becca came over yesterday as well, and as always, we had such a good time. I'm truly coming to adore her. (I liked her a lot before, don't get me wrong, but I'm becoming smitten now, lol!)
So, all in all, we are living the Warp Speed life, but I love it! I love having friends over all the time, I love that we are close enough to go to things like baby blessings! Now, if only we could get rid of that darn superfluous house....
The Almighty Liz

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Oh Me, Oh MY!!

Well, a couple of action packed days I've had! First things first:
I have a new nephew! (I gave Bruce and Renae a couple of days to announce, but they are busy, and so I apologize for jumping in!!) He was born Monday, June 30th, (my birthday as you all know, so he must be a genius as well as astronomically good looking), at I think 5:45pm? I'm not too horribly sure about that time. Keep an eye on Renae's blog, she'll post the correct stats soon I'm sure. He is named Clayton Thomas Harlan, and he weighed in at 7lbs 5oz, and he was 20in long. Mommy and baby are both super good, as far as I know. Clayton was out in one push. (I am staggered by this)
I got this news while my husband and Erik were in the hospital. My daughter, on my birthday whilst we had friends over and were doing dinner and cake and ice cream and fireworks and presents, slammed his finger in her bedroom door because she didn't want him in her room. This was not the first time she's done this, but this was definitely the worst. She spent the rest of the night in bed, and Erik got a trip to the ER. His finger's not broke, thank all that is holy, but he's still favoring it to an extent, and he has one heck of a bruise, and it's still swollen. Poor kid.
On to the good stuff! My presents! I got some dark chocolate truffles from my friend Chris, which were very close to the best thing I've EVER put in my mouth. My friend Becca is going to make me something. (she's a ceramics major, and super talented, so I'm way excited to see what it'll be) My mom got me a new dandy crock pot. (my old one got squashed in our recent move) My sister and her family got me water toys because we are now members of our local pool, and will be spending much time there. My sister-in-law and her husband got me a candle and a cooling eye mask, and then Suzanne watched my kids after dinner so I could go bowling child free with everybody. (yep, she's awesome, and the kids had a blast with Aunt Suzanne!!) I got a cute little black dress from Timpani and Erik. (her husband, not my son) My best friend Mary got me a cake and fireworks, and made my dinner and cleaned my kitchen. And last but not least, my husband got me the latest Stephenie Meyers novel, The Host! I'm a quarter of the way through it (I've been busy and I had to finish another book, so I didn't get started till yesterday) and so far it's awesome! Stephenie Meyers rocks, that's all I have to say.
And a bit of random good news; I went swimming yesterday and I did four laps! Now, I know that's piddly, and I had to rest after each lap, but considering that when I started I could only handle a half a lap period, rests or no, and I've had to take the last couple of weeks off due to setbacks with my stupid illness, I think that's awesome. I'm thinking of starting a fitness blog for everybody who wants to get in better shape with a support group. Weigh in will you guys? Who's interested? I know I do better when I have someone to be beholden to.
So that's it. Good week so far. I'm off to go spend some quality time with my best friend who's husband and son are off for the next couple of days. Until next time, folks!
The Almighty Liz

Monday, June 30, 2008

MY BIRTHDAY!!!!

There is much going on today, this greatest of all days. Much to blog about, but the first and most important of all things in the universe is this:

IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!!

That's right people, it's my birthday today. Feel free to wish me goodness and loves today, and I'm excepting all major gifts and credit cards.
We did a bit of preliminary celebrating on Saturday, after my side of the family's reunion, which was surprisingly fun. After the reunion, we had cake and presents with my family, and then a group of us went out to eat at my favorite place, and then we went bowling. The evening was a smashing success, (what else would you expect with me in charge of the festivities?) and I would just like to give a shout of thanks to all who came. I haven't laughed so hard for an entire evening in way too long. Thanks guys! You're all the best friends a girl could ask for.

Also of note today, my sister-in-law is in the hospital (as far as I know, I haven't talked to her since Saturday, but she was supposed to go in last night) having a baby! So let's all keep her in our thoughts today, and pray for an easy delivery with no complications. I will of course be posting all the details as I get them.

My very best friend in the world (excepting of course my gorgeous, talented husband) has caved and joined the blogosphere!!! Everyone must go see her at areyoufeelingcranky.blogspot.com because, as you would expect of someone I associate with, she's hysterically witty, beautiful, and she's my friend. Do you need any more reasons? I didn't think so. I will also be putting a link to the right there under my hubby's link to make navigating to her page a breeze. Your welcome.

It is also a recently made and getting to be a really good friend's birthday today as well. So here's a little holla out to Ben. Happy Birthday! (you and I know only the best and the brightest were born today!)

So, everyone have a good day today. Since it is my birthday, I do believe it is impossible not to. Everything just seems a little brighter today doesn't it?
The Almighty Liz

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Stupid People, Family Dirt, and Setbacks

Well, I'm discombobulated, so I thought I'd blog about it to get it off my chest.
So we have a Situation in my family I won't go into, (not wanting my dirty laundry hangin' out there for the entire cyber world to see) but it unravels to I have certain members of my family I don't talk to. Recently, they have decided to "bury the hatchet". Translation: they want to me admit that they were right all along, and deface myself and beg for their mercy, while submitting myself to whatever they decide to dish out. It turns out that my own personal little family has moved into the same ward as some of their extended family. I have been "warned" not to say anything bad about them to this extended family, and they have told these people that they won't talk bad about me either. (*note* doesn't telling someone you won't talk bad about someone else translate into talking bad about them?) Have I ever done anything to anyone at any time in my life to warrant be treated like I'm going to what? Go postal on a perfect stranger because they happened to be related to someone I don't care for? The correct answer to that folks is no.
My husband recently posted a very funny post on his blog labeled "Serious Jokes" or something like that. If you haven't seen it yet, I have his link on my blog to the right there, go see it, it's hilarious. John thought it was funny enough to spam some people in his address book in his email about it. One person in particular got mortally offended, to the point where she told John to never contact her again. I mean, seriously? The things she got upset over were things that I also have every right to be upset over, but she accused my husband of not having any personal experience with these things, and being "nasty". Again, seriously? For the record, I'm not upset. I found some of these jokes funnier than others, but as far as being offended, I mean, sheesh, why? So don't laugh at the unfunny ones. Duh.
I had to go to the doctor again yesterday, and I'm to stay off my feet for a few days. Basically not ovulating, loosing a lot of blood, ect ect packed on top of all the other crap, and you have a great recipe for Fainting Liz Casserole. I'm starting to get irritated at my continuing illness. I think I've had a pretty good attitude thus far, but I'm starting to feel frayed at the edges. It's probably just all the other crap in the past few days plus this latest physical setback. No fears people, this can be beaten, and I WILL destroy and PREVAIL, I'm just a little annoyed right now.
On the bright side, my birthday is in six days. That's right, mark your calenders, it's the thirtieth of June. A red letter day, to be sure. We are having some festivities this Saturday, and to be sure, I will post about it. I'm looking forward to being footloose and fancy free this weekend! Now, what to do with those darn kids....? Just joking, they're not darn kids, they're cute.
At any rate, thanks for listening to my venting. I feel much better. Cheers!
The Almighty Liz