Tuesday, July 21, 2009


I've been back from camp since last Friday, but haven't been able to muster up any interest in blogging.

maybe I'm still sleep-deprived.

Or high on s'mores! (s'mores! I love s'mores!) (also red vines.)

girls camp was awesome. more on that later. maybe. if I feel like it. here's a picture of one of the girls:

i like it.

Tonight was a ward party. I wasn't going to go, because Chris was still at work and William hadn't napped and Ivy was decidedly crabby (enough with the teething, little girl!), but at the last minute my desire to not cook outweighed my desire to shun company, so we went.

(You know, I'm starting to feel bad for Chris. I've been attending more events like this lately, and I think it's beginning to make him look bad. People assume he's some kind of delinquent husband. "There goes poor Elizabeth," they say, "all alone with her three kids. I wonder why her jerk of a husband never helps? ")

(wait, where was I going with that? I can't remember. In case you were concerned, Chris is not a delinquent.)

(also, he brings me home Cheesecake! I love that guy.)

Anyway. Here's a picture of our skit at Girls Camp. I told the Bishop tonight I was going to put it up. I didn't want to lie. I didn't want everyone to think I am a liar. also, I figured it was time to post something. so behold: the whole stupid reason for this whole stupid post:

good times.

Monday, July 13, 2009

(not much)

here's what you missed over the weekend:
Ivy got her first tooth, an ear infection and a low-grade fever.

Michael watched his first Cardinals game on TV. (that might have been more exciting for Chris.)

William was so cold in the pool that he shook and shivered and his lips started to turn blue, but was still furious that Chris made him get out.

It was, overall, a good weekend.
As I mentioned in my last post, we're moving into summer phase II around here, which (sorry) means less posting. (try to contain your grief.) This week, for example, I'm headed to Girls Camp, where I intend to spend a lot of time looking like this:

and the rest of the time hiding from bears.

Wish me luck.

Friday, July 10, 2009

the end

Today was the last day of swim lessons, and all the kids got to go down the slides.
and there is nothing these boys love more than going down the slides:

we did two sessions in a row this summer, four weeks straight, and here's what I learned: swim lessons are exhausting.

there's all that praticing "monster" arms:

and diving for rings:

plus the kicking:
wait, what's that?
William is easily distracted

by things that squirt

Michael was partial to the games:
"alligator, alligator, one, two, three:"
goodbye swim lessons. it was fun.

now on to summer phase 2.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

conversations with a 2-year-old, vol. III

We're on our way home from swim lessons with two tired, wet, well-chlorinated boys strapped back in their seats.

William tells me that when we get home he would like peanutbutter and jelly for lunch. Except he says it like this: "Mama. MOOOOOMMY. Mama. Mama. Mommy. MOOOMmy. I GOT SOMETHING TO TELL YOU."

"Please speak quietly, William. I'm listening."

"Mommy, please, when you, when we get, you, I, you, you, ...I want peanutbutter sanwhich. Okay? "

"Thank you for asking nicely, but we did that yesterday, " I tell him. "I think today we'll have turkey sandwiches."

"Nooooo!" he shrieks in agony. "NOOOO! Don't SAY THAT TO ME."

"William," I begin.


"William," I say, "that is not how you speak to mom. You need to use your kind, quiet voice and try again, please."

I hear a couple of deep, sniffling breaths in the back.

"Mommy," he says quietly, "when we get home, I gonna spank your bottom. please."

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

tuesday: a dramatization

6:00: William comes into bedroom, says he lost his binkie. Chris goes to help. I go back to sleep.

7:30: Chris gets up, goes downstairs, leaves for the gym. I go back to sleep.

7:45: Michael comes in. I let him in bed. He goes back to sleep. I go back to sleep.

8:00: William comes in. I let him in bed on the other side. He goes back to sleep. I go back to sleep. Michael wakes up.

8:10: Michael pokes me. "mama..." he says.
"shhhh," I say.
I go back to sleep.

8: 15: Michael props his head on his hand and pats my hair. "Mama," he says, "I love you so much."
I pat his hand on my head. "shhhh," I say.
He puts his head down. I go back to sleep.

8:20: Michael gets out of bed. "I'm just going to go to the bathroom," he stage-whispers, and runs out of the room. He slams the door. William wakes up.

8:20-8:30: William pokes me repeatedly in the face and calls me Bobo. I give up and get out of bed.

8:35: get Ivy. She's just hanging out in bed, staring at the ceiling. sometimes life is no fair.

8:45: "mama, I hungry," William says for the first time. I start making breakfast. "I'm working on it," I assure William.

8:46: Of course, I use the term "making breakfast" loosely. We slept in, so cheerios and strawberries all the way.

8:47: It's hard to do anything with William singing "I hungry, mama, I hungry. Mom. Mommy. Mama. Mama. I hungry." he's hanging on my leg. he becomes increasingly strident.

8:48: I stop reassuring him that breakfast is coming and begin vigorously ignoring him. so i can, you know, get breakfast.

8:50: William falls down in a puddle of tragic neglect in the middle of the kitchen floor. I stop getting breakfast, pick him up and reassure him that I do in fact love him, and, for the love of heaven, if he will just stop whining, I can finish getting breakfast for everyone.

8:55: William is consoled.

8:56: but now Ivy is crying. She wants her breakfast, too.

8: 57: William is crying again. Michael took his toy? or something?

8:58: Michael is crying now. He didn't do it. Do what? he doesn't know.

9:00: I sit everyone down on the couch and explain firmly that if everyone will STOP CRYING AND/OR FIGHTING I can finish getting breakfast and we can eat OR they can NOT stop crying and/or fighting and we can all go back to bed, instead.
everyone stops crying. even Ivy.

9:03: Ivy's drinking a bottle. boys are eating cheerios with strawberries on top. success! I make toast with peanutbutter to celebrate.

9:05: The boys are swordfighting with their spoons. I ask them to stop.

9:08: the boys begin swordfighting with their spoons again. I confiscate their spoons. "spoons are for big boys who use them to eat," I say. A little piece of my soul dies. and Michael sobs.

9:10: I watch them try to eat soggy cheerios with their fingers. I reflect that taking their spoons away was maybe not the best way to make my point.

9:15: oh, well.

9:30: Michael is cleaned up. William is cleaned up. they ask to go outside and jump on the tramp. sure.

9:31: begin cleaning cheerios off the chairs and floor.

9:32: and walls.

9:38: wait, where's Ivy?

9:38:30: Ivy is in the front room, chewing on Michael's flipflop.

9:40: Now Ivy is trapped in the highchair eating cheerios. She is happy. William, on the other hand, is outisde screaming.

9:45: It would appear that Michael shut him out of the tramp. Also took away his ball. Also his bat. Also his ability speak at normal volumes.

9:47: I try to discuss this with Michael while William is on my lap. "Michael, that wasn't ..." I'm saying, when William jumps in. "Don't TEASE ME, Michael!" He yells. "That NOT NICE."

9:48: and what else is there to say, really?

9:50: William is happy. Michael is happy. I look at the clock. GAH!

9:51: I run frantically up and down the stairs looking for swimsuits and towels and sunscreen. "Everyone, please take your PJs off," I say, and dash back upstairs for more swim diapers.

9:52: William follows me upstairs. Michael wanders off to look for his lightsaber.

9:53: "Boys! pajamas! off! now!" I order. William starts to go outside. Michael asks me to tell him a story.

9:53:30: I stop moving. "Alright guys, here's the deal: we can either take pajamas off now, or we can just stay home from swim lessons." everyone starts whining, but at least the pajamas come off.

9:54: I put William in his swim diaper, swimsuit and shirt. I ignore his protests and cover him in sunscreen. Michael gets himself dressed. I cover him with sunscreen, too.

10:00: I hand Michael his shoes with instructions to put them on and run upstairs to get dressed.

10:05: I hear William crying in the backyard. I run to the window. Michael has shut him out of the tramp again.

10:07: I run downstairs and begin gathering kids.

10:08: wait, where's Ivy?

10:08:30: Ivy is still in the highchair where I left her, eating cheerios and also Michael's shoe.

10:09: "How did Ivy get your shoe?" I ask Michael as I buckle him into the car. "She wanted it," he answers.

10:12: Everyone is in the car. We will not be late. "Mama. Mom. Mommy. MOOOOM," William calls. "Yes, William?" I answer patiently. "I stinky," he tells me.

10:18: We're really leaving this time.

10:35: Arrive at pool. Pull out stroller, kids, diaper bag, pool bag, run inside.

10:40: Whistle blows to indicate beginning of lesson. Michael runs for the pool. William belatedly realizes he can't think of anything more wretched than being forced into the water to play with his teacher, his friends, and all the great pool toys he's been telling me about. He glues himself to my leg.

10:41: still won't let go.

10:42: still won't let go.

10:43: teacher sees us, comes to help. William holds tighter.

10:44: wait, is Ivy okay?

10:45: still strapped in the stroller, just licking Michael's shoe.

10:46: finally manage to get Williams arms off long enough to run away.

10:47: William is back to loving the pool.

10:48: sit by Ivy. Hand her my (tightly closed) water bottle. Pull out a book.

10:50: I love swim lessons.

11:10: whistle blows. wait, what? done already? how did that happen?

11:13-11:25: dry, dress and move kids. Wrestle them into car. Leave swimming pool. Answer "can we go down the slide?" approx. 6 million times. suspect my kids never really listen to a word I am saying.

11:30-11:50: "Mama, I hungry. I hungry, mama. MOMMY! MOMMY! I HUNGRY."

Will William's hunger ever be satisfied? Did I ever manage to hide all the shoes somewhere Ivy can't find them? And why, exactly, did it take me so long to get a blog posted today?

...I guess you'll never find out, because I'm going to go to bed instead of finishing this.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Saturday, July 4, 2009

but Mr. Adams

I particularly like to celebrate today by watching the movie version of one of my favorite musicals:

if you've never seen it, go rent it immediately. Better yet, find a local production and go see it.

Happy fourth of July, everyone.

Friday, July 3, 2009


I do not come from a large family. I mean, by most standards my immediate family is fairly large -- I have four siblings and two cousins who lived with us -- but my extended family is quite small. I have exactly six first cousins: the two that were wards of my parents, and four more that lived in Texas, who we saw once a year for a few days. I have two aunts and one uncle, and between the three of them, only my dad's sister and her husband like us much.

And this, to me, seems like a pretty standard family size.

then I married Christofer.

Christofer has 8 aunts and uncles and 17 first cousins. And most of those cousins have spouses. And most of those cousins and their spouses have kids. and all of those aunts and uncles and kids and cousins and spouses know each other and like each other and get together several times a year to party.

and that's just his Dad's side.

Sometimes I still find the sheer volume of relatives extraordinary, but the truth is I've always wanted a big family. I never thought in terms of that big family being an extended family (probably because my extended family does not extend very far), but now that I have acquired one in-law, I am delighted, seriously delighted by all of these cousins and 2nd cousins and cousins-in-law and cousins-once-removed.

and it's only getting bigger.

Shelley and her girls, June 2009

Thursday, July 2, 2009


just so we're clear, that last post was not meant to imply that I am, in any way, ready for another kid.

I'm not, if you were wondering.

What I did mean to imply is that however not ready for another baby I am (very. very very very), Christofer is even more not ready. I know! I didn't think it was possible either! But it's true. And now that we have passed that time when traditionally I become pregnant again, even totally innocent observations about how cute Ivy was as a little itty bitty newborn provoke from him an immediate "No, No Way, Not A Chance, You're Going to Need A New Husband For That."

even when all I meant was, Kids. They grow up so fast, sometimes.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


I went over to see my friend Sandii's new baby last week, and was shocked by her smallness. I had the sudden realization that Ivy really isn't baby anymore--in comparison she's a veritable monster.

so when I came home, I said to Christofer, "Ivy's not a baby anymore. I miss her teeny tiny size."
...and that's the story of how I got myself banished to the extra bed indefinitely.