Ever After
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  • April20th


    Posted in: Uncategorized

    Normally, I don’t laugh while cleaning, but today I couldn’t help but chuckle when I unearthed this index card under a pile of junk.  

    I’m so glad that I jotted down the quote for posterity sake.

  • April18th


    Posted in: Uncategorized

    Who woulda thunk that if you cut cheap conduit pipe just right, you can hang it from a ribbon, thunk it with a mallet, and it will make a pretty sound?

    My genius parents made this set of chimes for me to use in FHE or Primary. Well, the note inside the box said that the gift was for my kids, but I’m pretty sure that there was some mistake and that the chimes are REALLY for me. Because I LOVE them.

    (And so do my kids.)

    Here are some links that my parents used as resources to help them make the chimes:

  • April11th


    Posted in: Vivi

    Vivi:  “Mom, when I was three I could stomp my foot and my leg would not jiggle.  Now, I am five and my leg jiggles when I stomp my foot and when I run fast.”

    It’s not like she’s obese or anything–25th percentile in her height, 50th in her weight.  But the fact that she notices “jiggle,” combined with her preoccupation for looking at herself in the mirror every chance she gets, freaks me out a little bit.


    Motherhood is a bumpy ride . . . that makes my legs jiggle, too.

  • April10th

    Sunday Best??!!?

    Posted in: Lori

    You’ve probably heard the phrase “Sunday Best.”  It think it refers to putting on your best clothes as a sign of respect and going to church for Sunday worship.

    Sadly, on Sundays, I am not at my best.

    Sundays start out with me arising early from a fitful Saturday night slumber and practicing the piano.  My eyes are bleary because I typically have bad dreams about forgetting my piano music, not being able to find the Primary room, or not being able to remember how to play the piano.  So far, two out of three dreams have become reality on more than one occasion.

    After I polish the simple little piano pieces to perfection, I bypass breakfast (with nerves in overdrive, I can’t eat) and go upstairs to get dressed.  I dig through my closet,  shove aside my “Sunday Best,” and reach for anything that doesn’t need to be dry cleaned.  Despite the shivers and shakes I experience as I sit on the piano bench in the Primary room, my armpits produce buckets of perspiration, so I opt for only “wash and wear” attire.

    And remember all that practicing and polishing I did before church and throughout the week? Well, even though I mastered the music at home, my brain ceases to work the moment I try to play in front of people, and Sunday Best becomes Sunday Worst.  There are times that my heart is beating so fast that I think I might just pass out.

    Two Sundays ago, I bawled all the way home … and then some.  I had butchered the piece that we had been asked to sing in Sacrament Meeting on Easter Sunday.  If I can’t master my nerves when I’m playing in front of a bunch of sweet children, I knew that I would suffer a full on nervous breakdown when trying to play in front of all the scary adults in my ward. Thirty years ago, my nerves got the better of me while playing for the Primary in Sacrament Meeting, and I really hadn’t played in front of people since that time until I was recently called as Primary pianist.  And so it has been that, with each passing day, I have become more and more freaked out as Easter Sunday speedily approaches.

    But today, my prayers were answered … literally, because every prayer I utter these days includes a plea to help me overcome my freakish fear of playing the piano in front of people.

    Hallelujah!  The Primary WILL NOT be singing in Sacrament Meeting on Easter Sunday.

    Next up … Mother’s Day … but it is a simple song that I can hopefully play even when impaired.

    Prayers on my behalf are in order, friends and family.  Lots of prayers.

  • April8th


    Posted in: Ariana

    Having funded our pediatrician’s kids’ college funds over the last month with our frequent visits, I was hesitant to take Ariana in for the rash that had developed on her face.  I dosed her up with Benadryl every four to six hours and waited for the rash to subside.

    But it didn’t.

    And then the school called and said that the rash was getting worse and her face was swelling.

    I waited another 24-hours, washed all her bedding and waited for the rash to go away.

    But it didn’t.

    So I broke down and took her to the doctor.  Even though she wasn’t complaining of a sore throat, they swabbed her throat, and we waited for the test to come back “negative.”

    But it didn’t.

    Scarlet Fever, aka Strep with a Rash.

    Grateful am I for antibiotics and competent physicians and my sweet Scarlet Ariana.


  • April4th

    Have you wondered why the blog hasn’t been updated?

    Or the laundry finished?

    Or meals prepared?

    Or why you can’t see my kitchen counters?

    Or why The Littles (Tad & Vivi) watch entirely too much t.v. these days?

    Or why Bryan and I have bags under our eyes?

    It shouldn’t be hard to figure out why … if you use your imagination!

    For the past several months, Bryan and I have helped oversee a little team of six 4th and 5th graders as they’ve prepared for the Destination Imagination tournament.

    First a bit of background on Destination ImagiNation–“Destination ImagiNation, Inc. is an extraordinary non-profit organization that provides educational programs for students to learn and experience creativity, teamwork and problem solving. Every year, they reach 100,000 students across the U.S. and in more than 30 countries. Destination ImagiNation is an educational program in which student teams solve open-ended Challenges and present their solutions at Tournaments. Teams are tested to think on their feet, work together and devise original solutions that satisfy the requirements of the Challenges. Participants gain more than just basic knowledge and skills—they learn to unleash their imaginations and take unique approaches to problem solving.”

    We formed a team last year as a chance for Bryan to play a more active roll in Ariana’s life and for Ariana to have an outlet for her bright, creative mind.  She didn’t qualify for the “Gifted and Talented” program at school, so Ariana and I saw this as an opportunity for her to do similar activities and exercises at home.

    Last year, the team placed 6th at the regional tournament.  They had a lot of fun preparing and presenting but I think that everyone was shocked at the high caliber of the elementary school teams.

    As Fall 2010 approached, half the members from last year’s team signed up again, and we recruited another three kids to participate.  They decided to tackle the “structure building” challenge:

    • Design and build a structure made only of aluminum foil, wood and glue
    • Test how much weight the structure will hold
    • Present a story about a character that is foiled
    • Integrate a team-written verse and a published verse into the story

    Meeting one night a week (and then more frequently as the February regional tournament approached), the kids worked together to create the solution to their Challenge.  And much to our surprise, they took FIRST PLACE at the regional tournament and qualified for the state tournament to be held in Lubbock, TX.

    The six-week period between the regional and state tournament was intense as our house and garage were turned into DI Central.  And even though all the parents were incredibly proud of the work and workmanship of the kids, no one could have predicted that the team would take home FIRST PLACE at the state tournament and qualify for the GLOBAL DI tournament in Knoxville, TN.

    Texas is a BIG state!

    DI is HUGE in Texas!

    And our team should feel ENORMOUS pride about what they’ve accomplished!

    Their tiny 8.78 gram structure held 465 pounds, and their skit based on the poem “Homework Machine” by Shel Silverstein was adorable.

    When one parent told us last night that her child wanted to wear his medal to bed at night, Bryan and I couldn’t hold back the tears. Some schools only invite children from the “Gifted and Talented” classes to participate on a DI team. Most of the kids on our team are not extraordinary by the school district’s standards. Very few are or ever will be celebrated for their scholastic achievements. In fact, we’re very much like the “Bad News Bears” of DI, if you know what I mean. But I have no doubt that each child on our team will forever remember that they were a part of something special … even magical … and that through hard work, team work, and using their noggins they can accomplish the unimaginable.

    Destination … GLOBAL!