Monday, December 29, 2008

I'm pooped.

We just got home from DC. Traveling with a kid is always hard, but I kept thinking, especially as we were going through security "holy crap. we're going to have to do this with two kids in a few months. YIKES!" We had a wonderful time visiting the Riley fam in Washington D.C. I will post about it soon.

Listen to what happened to Devin's poor little sister, Caitlyn. She wanted to go work at Spring Canyon (Buena Vista, CO) for a week. Some friends hooked her up with a friends and family Southwest ticket. Unfortunately those tickets are standby so she flew out to Chicago to get on a flight to Denver. She sat at the Chicago airport from early in the morning until 9 at night because all of those flights were too full to get on. Then she found out she would not get on a flight until Thursday, so she flew back home to D.C. I love you Caitlyn! I hope you can get to Colorado....

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Devin's brother, Darren, is in Iraq. We thought he needed to be in the family picture.

I miss you other family (celebrating in Phoenix). Don't drink too much of Papa's eggnog tonight! 

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Movies

Jeni blogged about Christmas movies and I thought I'd take a minute to blog about some of my faves/least faves.


Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: ultimate favorite. There's nothing better.
Elf: This movie is just so great. "I'm in love, I'm in love and I don't care who knows it!"
Miracle on 34th Street: any version, but I like the 90s version (the girl with the lisp) the best.
Love Actually: I know it's sort of inappropriate at times, but it always makes me cry and it's hilarious.
The Muppets Christmas Carol

Good, but I'm burned out:

It's A Wonderful Life: I honestly don't think I could watch that one this year. It's just too depressing!

The Christmas Story: TBS ruins it by playing it over and over and over again.

Least Faves:

Frosty the Snowman

A Christmas Carol (my mom loves the old school version and begs to watch it every year, but unfortunately we always fall asleep).

One movie I have never seen, but absolutely refuse to watch no matter what is The Christmas Shoes. I don't care how adorable Rob Lowe is or how much I loved him in the West Wing. NO!

So far our vacation to D.C. has been very relaxing and fun! The flight over here was pretty uneventful. At one point Addison's ears started to really hurt, but I kept her happy with gummi Lifesavers (aka "circle treats") and that seemed to distract her. She's having a lot of fun with Devin's parents and brothers and sisters, and is totally showing off for them.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Office Party

I was look forward to Devin's office parties every year. They always have great food, you can wear jeans, everyone is super nice and it's always fun to see how each floor decorates for the Christmas Floor Decorating Contest each year. This year Devin's floor won hands down. His gingerbread Wal-Mart was the big hit. He spent over 6 hours working on it last night (but was happy as a clam the whole time). We decided to bring Addison to the party this year. She was pretty good, except refused to eat any of the food (even though it was manicotti, something she'd normally like) but still wanted sips of my diet A&W and a cookie. Normally I would refuse to let her have a cookie unless she ate something else first, but who wants to ruin a perfectly good party with a tantrum over manicotti? So she had that cookie, then a few minutes later Linda (the HR lady) gave her another frosted cookie. Then we went upstairs, where Addison had fun playing with this fisher price tool set that someone had included as part of the decoration upstairs until it was time to go. We said goodbye to Devin (he stayed to play poker) but Addison threw herself on the floor in a heap when it was time to go (right in front of Linda's office) and she came out and said "Does someone need some M&Ms?" I wanted to say "Oh dear Lord no more sweets!", but no one likes those moms. So Addison got a cup full of m&ms on top of the cookies and pop she already had.

Oh well. It's Christmas. :)

Addison gave me another indicator that she has no interest in potty training as of yet. I was upstairs using the bathroom and I heard her say "I need to go potty too!" I got so excited, so I immediately came downstairs to where she was playing with stickers and said "Want me to go get your potty Addison?" She said "No thanks. I already went." and continued playing.

Here are some pictures from Devin's floor at work: Their theme was "Santa's Workshop: Building Wal-Marts for good little boys and girls."

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Parenting 101 aka "Please don't fire me Kyle and Julie!"

I really should have known better than to leave Addison and Celia downstairs to their own devices, even though it was only for a few minutes. I started to get a little nervous when it was quiet, but as soon as I heard "crinkling" I ran downstairs. Too late.

So much for the chocolate advent calendar. Thanks anyway Leigh Ayn!
I really shouldn't have encouraged Addison (the culprit) by taking these pictures, but I couldn't help myself.

I honestly can't believe how quickly they ate those things. I know they're really small, but I was seriously only emailing for, like, 5 minutes!

Oh, and don't worry. They're sitting here next to me as I type.
Wow. I've learned a lot of lessons this week. Thank goodness tomorrow's Friday!


Right now I am drinking my Trader Joe's Wintry Blend coffee (THANK YOU LEIGH AYN!) with Peppermint Mocha Creamer and life is good.

It would be better if I didn't have the Wonder Pets theme song stuck in my head as I type this. "What's gonna work? TEAM WORK!"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Another dose of humility

I always seem to have to go to the grocery store in really bad weather. Today was no exception. Thankfully the girls were really, really good. It only sucked when the cashier had scanned all my groceries and I realized I left my wallet out in the car. Arrghh...I'm such a scatterbrain. I was proud of myself for exhibiting self-control and only doing two stores (they're right next to each other) when I knew deep down inside I could go to Aldi as well and pay much less. Sometimes it's worth it to pay a little more, like when you've got two toddlers with you and there's a blizzard outside! I was really excited, though, because I got all the stuff I needed to make our meals for the week (plus some stuff for when we get home from our trip to DC) as well as staples and I still have $10 left in my weekly budget! That almost never happens to me.

Do you ever do nice things for people out of the secret hope that they'll fall all over themselves with gratitude? As the rest of you Kansas Citians know, it snowed a lot today. I thought it would be super nice of me to shovel the driveway for Devin because he had to work late. I didn't think he'd want to come home at 7 or 8 pm and have to immediately go out in the dark and shovel the driveway. PLUS I thought it be freaking awesome for him to pull into the driveway to see his wife out there shoveling away, 30 weeks pregnant. GRRRRRR! Well he missed me out there. I finished up (DISCLAIMER: If I had felt any kind signal from my body that I was overdoing it I would have stopped, but it really wasn't too bad) and made some dinner for Addison and me. About an hour later I heard the garage door open! He's home! Let the rejoicing and groveling begin! Yeah that never happened. He said "Did you shovel the driveway?" I said "YEP!" nodding proudly. He said "Oh. Thanks!" and that was the end of that.

To be honest? I'm glad he reacted that way (in hindsight). The whole point of doing something nice for someone is the sacrifice that it takes to do it, not the glory you receive. Another lesson that it's not all about me.

So when is this ice storm supposed to start? I'm a little nervous about it because I have to work really late tomorrow night. I don't mind driving in the snow, but I HATE driving on icy roads, especially at night.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Walking in a Winter Wonderland?

I sold another book on amazon on Thursday. I flipped out last night because I didn't see the Sold! Ship Now! email from amazon because I get about 10 junk emails from amazon every day. I knew if I sent the book out priority mail this morning it'd get there pretty fast, so I get the girls bundled up, grocery menu planned, gym clothes on, etc. and we go out to the car.

Problem: Devin forgot to take the carseat out of his car so Celia could use it (don't get too mad at him. We were out late last night and had a busy weekend).

Ok no grocery store. Whatever. No gym (ehh....not that big of a sacrifice, really).

But I HAD to go to the post office. I had to mail out that book. It's, like, a 1/2 mile away, so I figured we'd take a "Winter Walk."

I know now that it is 8 degrees outside. I did not know that when we left.

Yes. This was a STUPID idea. I know that now, but I honestly did not have a choice. I get the girls extra bundled in hats, gloves, fleece blankets (they looked pretty cute), etc. and set them up in the stroller. The whining started about 5 minutes into the walk. I wish Celia had not been taught to say "I'M FREEEEEZING!" because she said it the whole time. Addison just sat there, looking miserable. They were happy as long as I was singing, so you can probably imagine me out there breathlessly singing

"The...wheels...on...the bus...go...round...and round..."

We made it there (thankfully it only took about 10 minutes to walk there)and mailed the book. If only this person in South Dakota knew the sacrifice I went through to mail her a slightly used copy of "Teaching With Love and Logic." It was the walk home that really sucked. Both girls started crying and continued crying even inside the house.

My birthday gift from Eric was sitting outside against the door. It was a bottle of what looks like really good Italian wine. There are only 3 reasons that entire bottle has not been consumed by now.

1. I am 30 weeks pregnant
2. Being completely drunk may somewhat affect the way I take care of Addison and Celia today.
3. I'm not an alcoholic.

I had a Krispy Kreme donut instead.

Lesson: Hell might be a lot like a winter walk with two 2 year olds. Except this version of hell would be a lot colder (8 degrees to be exact).

Lesson Two: It would have been worth the negative rating to stay at home. Duh.


Do you know how many places give you free stuff on/around your birthday (just sign up for their emails)? I had several coupons and I used them all this weekend! :)

Houlihans: Free entree (anything)
Red Robin: Free burger
Sheridans: Free shake, concrete or sundae (they have a drive-thru if your bday happens to fall in December but you still want a chocolate malt)
Banana Republic Card: $15 coupon (Devin got a really nice sweater at the outlet for free. No tax or anything!)

Thanks for all your wonderful birthday wishes! I felt so special this year. It was wonderful.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Because I might forget to write it down somewhere...

I was making chicken sandwiches w/ sweet potato fries for dinner last night (it was my creative effort to use up some chicken and hamburger buns) and Addison was "helping me" dredge the chicken in flour and egg to pan fry. That day for breakfast we had made french toast, so when she saw me dip the chicken in the egg she asked

"Is mama making french chicken?"

Ha ha ha ha!

Thursday, December 11, 2008


AMANDA just sent me a Starbucks giftcard for my birthday! THANK YOU AMANDA! That made my day. And yes, I am fully aware of the fact that my birthday is not until Saturday, but opening cards early doesn't count right? I was actually thinking that it might have been some really important news about the Washburn family. Because that comes in a purple card. ;)

And you know what? Because you made me feel so happy and loved, I'm just gonna go ahead and say it:


heh heh.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I've always wanted to buy stuff on infomercials. I will say that I have never bought one single thing from an infomercial, but I'm always tempted. That steam mop commercial gets me every time. Normally Devin just rolls his eyes or laughs at me, but when he saw the Snuggie commercial he said he wanted one of those too.

You know what I'm talking about?

Can't you just see us sitting on the couch next to each other with our Snuggies on? Ha ha ha! Unfortunately Dave Ramsey was making fun of them on his show today. Dave, I agree with you on most things, but what's not to like about a Snuggie? They're awesome. At least they look awesome on tv.


I had a very frustrating coupon day. First I forgot to use two of my 75 cents off coupons at CVS today. I hate it when that happens. It drives me insane.

Then I got all crazy excited over this detergent deal over at Walgreens. I bought two things of laundry detergent for $1 each. They're normally $6.99, so I was ecstatic. Yes I get excited about things like laundry detergent. I'm weird.

I paid for them, happily walked back to my car and then it occurred to me that I have a front loading washer. I have to use "special" detergent. I guess regular detergent foams up too much and can ruin your clothes and the washing machine. DANG!

So yes, I went back and returned the detergent. What can I say, except I have no pride anymore. I needed that stupid $2 and didn't want to waste it on something that I couldn't use (plus I honestly thought it might be nice to put it back on the shelf for someone who could legitimately use it). I hate it when I end up wasting time like that because I'm not paying attention.


Oh, and one more thing. I totally have pregnancy fat face. It has returned with an awful vengeance. I'd be more upset, except I just found out that one of my close friends has MS. Pregnancy fat face is pretty low on the list of bad things to happen to a person. In fact, it shouldn't belong on a list at all.

Good night!

I will admit that I totally stole this off of someone else's blog, but I thought it was really cool:

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Here are a couple of pictures of some of our little decorations. Sometimes I wish my house was decorated more like something out of Southern Living or House Beautiful, but those people don't have toddlers that mess with all their stuff. Plus they have lots of money. Plus I just don't care that much! At least people can feel comfy over at our place. I don't freak out if you spill something!

That's our cute little tree. We just don't have a big enough living room for a normal one. Andria, that's why your suggestion of putting my 8' Santa in the living room won't work. That apartment complex across the street is the reason for my trepidation about sticking Santa out there. I have a feeling he might get stolen.

We don't have a fireplace. Santa will have to come through the air vent or something.

One of my former 6th grade students made that little light thing for me one year. That's one of the beauties of having a house that does not look like a catalog: you give me something for Christmas, I'll display it!

There they are in all their bright and shining glory! The only one I'm missing is Santa. The snow monster actually roars and plays music. We have to limit Addison to playing it in her room, and only in the afternoon so our neighbor won't hate us. Addison and Celia watched the movie yesterday and loved it.

We also have a beautiful Willow Tree nativity scene. I love it.

So let's talk some more about Christmas songs. Your favorites? The ones you absolutely detest?

Here are my faves:
1. Little Drummer Boy by Josh Groban.
2. The Entire Mariah Carey Christmas cd
3. O Holy Night by Point of Grace
4. Emmanuel by Michael W. Smith (mock away Eric)
5. Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer. Yes, I'm serious. "Should we open up her gifts or send them back? SEND THEM BACK!" The highlight was when I played it in the car while running errands with the girls and Celia goes "I like this song!"

There are many, many more.

Here are the ones I will turn off immediately or run to the backroom at work and skip.

1. Christmas Shoes
2. Mary Did You Know? (I think I've just heard it sung really badly too many times at the chapel growing up)
3. TLC singing "Sleigh Ride"'s as awful as it sounds.
4. Any Christmas song "cool jazzified" on 98.1

I bet I could think of more. What are your suggestions?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

For Amanda

Just a little background:
Second to Christmas Shoes, this is the cheesiest song ever in the world. That didn't stop Amanda and me from playing it non-stop and dancing around our dorm room in Moore Hall the whole Christmas season. Good memories, my friend.

Sunday Stuff

Tonight at church they were doing baptisms. I recognized a husband and wife that I used to work in Van Zile (K-State) with, except they weren't husband and wife back then. It was really special to watch them get baptized together.

Our pastor told us tonight that his daughter is pregnant. She was worried the church wouldn't accept her, or handle it well. When he told us what he told her "that the church would accept her with grace and love" everyone started clapping and cheering. That made me proud. We've all done pretty stupid stuff. If you haven't, I've done enough stupid stuff to cover for you. I'm thankful for a savior that forgives all the stupid stuff and lets us start over again. New. I feel like I sometimes have to start over again every 20 minutes some days.

Westside is a very special church. I'm so thankful to have found it. Did I ever tell you that I put off going there for several months because "oh no. Westside was one of those K-State churches that I kept hearing about over and over and over again. Westside this, Westside that, bla bla bla. God forbid I join a bandwagon!" Sometimes my pride gets me into some serious trouble. I'm glad I didn't listen to it for very long.

Ok now I'm just procrastinating. I have to clean the kitchen and I realllly don't want to. I wish I could pay my kid some allowance to do it. ;)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

I love presents.

Most of you know that I like to open my presents early. In fact, my wonderful mother-in-law learned to send my birthday presents to Devin's work because I have a tendency to dive in as soon as they come in the mail (insert big toothy grin here). My aunt always tries to write in big, bold black writing DO NOT OPEN TIL YOUR BIRTHDAY (or Christmas). She even adds I KNOW HOW YOU ARE! I was pretty good last year. I opened them up the night before. That counts, right?

Well one thing you may not know is that I seriously get equally or more excited for people to open gifts that I give them. I often try to convince people to open their gifts right away. It's just too exciting to wait! I'm like a little kid "WELL, DO YOU LIKE IT?! WHAT DO YOU THINK?! HUH?!, nearly hyperventilating before them when they do. My mom never gives in. Neither does Aunt Shel. Devin always gives in. Last night I bought him one of his presents (a pair of headphones for running) and gave them to him. Honestly, his headphones broke and he has been using mine for the past few weeks, so I did want him to be able to start using them. My intentions were pure! Well now there's someone else who will gladly open a present early: my two year old daughter Addison! Yes! Would this be taking advantage of her limited development? Probably. Technically they weren't her real Christmas presents; just a new pair of jeans and some sparkly red shoes ($11 for both at Baby my job!) to wear for Christmas. But she was so excited! She kept saying "I love my red shoes!" and hugging me and Devin, and doing that over and over again. Devin told me I should have given them to her after they went to the gym, and sure enough, the new red shoes were on her feet when they left the house!

This season is a lot of fun.

P.S. Amanda do you remember back in college when we gave each other our Christmas presents Thanksgiving weekend? ;)

Here's one more fun picture for you from yesterday when I watched my friend Kelly's daughter, Elise. They made a little picnic!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dear Dad

Dear Dad,
Because I found out today that you read my blog, it is therefore official that you love me more than mom. And I forgive you for teasing me about drinking ONE glass of wine.

Your daughter

I love Kansas. And senior citizens.

I was at one of my favorite places today, Orowheat Bread Outlet, to use my monthly b1g1 free coupon out of valpak (if you don't need yours, give it to me! I'll use it!). I know I'm being a wise shopper because all of the places I choose to shop are filled with cute old people (Aldi, Hy-vee, and now the bread outlet). Well one particularly cute old lady came up to me with a stack of punch cards (you get a free loaf of bread when you fill one up) that were all filled in. She told me that she wanted to give me a couple of them to use. I told her that she didn't have to; that she could just use them again next time, but she insisted and said "Merry Christmas!" So thanks to her generosity (and my b1g1 free coupon) I was able to get 2 loaves of whole grain bread and 2 packages of whole grain hamburger buns for only $1.89 AND I'll be able to go back again next month and do the same thing (they only let me use one of the punch cards). That made my day. So thank you, you cute old lady. I promise to do the same thing for someone else if given the opportunity.

I sold a book on amazon. It sold in less than 20 minutes! Selling things is fun. What else can I sell? I am tempted to sell Roxy because she threw up on the carpet again.

I am also excited about some of the Christmas presents I've found for my family this year. I don't think my mom reads my blog (in fact, I am also sure she doesn't. Neither does my husband. Where is the love?!) but I better not say just in case. Let's just say googling for online promo codes and then having them work is even more fun than selling things!

Today was a good day!

Toddler Instincts

I've been getting off work an hour later because of extended mall hours, so when I get home my "let's party" switch turns on and I have a very difficult time settling down to go to sleep. Going on the internet makes it even worse, but that didn't stop me from hanging out on here til 1:00 am. I was still wide awake, so I thought I'd take a bath and maybe that would calm me down. I went to bed at 1:30. At 2 a.m. I awaken to the pitter patter of little footsteps down the hall and into my room. When I look over, my 2 year old says "HI MAMA!" She must have thought it was morning. Devin and I have a rule to makes the whole kid in your bed thing a little easier: if it's before 5 a.m. she has to go back to her bed; after 5 a.m. she can stay in our bed. I led her back to bed (she was mad. She really did think it was morning). Before I left she said "I want to pray." Ok. Can't turn that down. Addison knows the stalling techniques that work with mom. :)

I think I need to re-start my "go to bed earlier" plan.

Ok friends and stalkers,
I need some really good tips for having a toddler and a newborn. I started watching Celia when she was itty bitty (Addison was 8 months old), but she always goes home around 5, so I know I'll be in for some surprises. Give me your best advice!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


The whole Santa Clause situation has been on my mind a lot lately. This quote from one of my favorite blogs, Stacy From Louisville made me laugh:

Perhaps one of the most hotly debated issues around Christmas is whether or not, as Christians, we're supposed to tell our children about Santa. You know as well as I do that this determines your worth as a parent.It's kind of like the whole Amy Grant situation. As the years pass, I can't remember if we're still supposed to be mad at her or not. To El Shaddai or not El Shaddai; that is the question. Same with Santa.

This was my original thought, that I thought was so profound: "If we tell Addison now that both Santa and Jesus are real and Santa turns out to be fake, how can she know that Jesus is real?"

When I took my profound thought to Devin he said "Well how is that any different from The Backyardigans and Barney?"

Uh....good point.

Then I realized that my profound thought from above wasn't so profound because just about every other Christian parent probably has the same thought. Dang! Here's another funny quote from the same post:

Once, in a women's group, I mentioned taking my kids to visit Saint Nick. As soon as I said it, one mom said, "We choose not to lie to our children. If we lie to them about Santa they'll think we're lying about Jesus. Then where would we be?" She made a good point. As my kids and I keyed her Mercedes later that day I couldn't help but wonder if my children would be scarred for life because of Santa Claus? Was I doing irreversible damage? I lost a good 20 minutes of sleep that night wondering...

So Santa stays in the Riley house! Why? BECAUSE IT'S FUN! Just like my extremely tacky...err..whimsical collection of stuffed Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer characters that must be displayed prominently in the house every Christmas. I don't think we'll make this gigantic deal out of Santa because I really do want the focus for Addison to be on Jesus (thankfully she has about 4 or 5 different nativities from both grandmothers so this shouldn't be a problem!) but to avoid Santa like the plague seems a little overly dramatic and silly to me.

Monday, December 1, 2008

After holiday letdown

Do any of you get depressed when the holiday weekend is over? I always get really sad when Christmas ends (no more music, decorations, gift giving, etc.) but today I was kind of in a funk because Thanksgiving was over. I loved getting to spend all that time with Devin and my family, especially my brother who lives in Denver. He's very attractive by the way for any of you single ladies out there. Plus you get me as a sister-in-law which, in my opinion, is the ultimate prize. ;) I think I may have overheard him teaching Addison about evolution when he was playing with Play-doh with her....

My pie making venture turned out pretty great, but the Pumpkin Pie Cake was (and always is) the hit of the dessert menu. It looks like a pumpkiny blob in a 9x13 pan, but tastes like manna from heaven (or realistically probably a lot better). So thank you once again, Amanda for that wonderful recipe.

The rest of the weekend was spent working and hanging out. On Sunday Devin, Addison and I spent the entire day together which was great. We went to spin class (yep I made it through the whole class, taking it pretty easy of course) First Watch (you can get a free entree if you sign up for their email club) for breakfast, watched Love Actually, and went to church.

This pregnancy I've done much better about my hormonal outbursts, but I had two this weekend:

One thanksgiving evening because my dad was teasing me relentlessly about having ONE glass of wine with my dinner. I made it perfectly clear beforehand that my wine quota included Christmas and Thanksgiving. First he refused to put a glass next to my plate. Then he only filled it about 1 cm with wine. In my family teasing = affection, but he should know better than to mess with a overly emotional pregnant woman. I started crying, which wouldn't have been a big deal, but my mom invited a friend that I had never met before. I did drink my glass. I almost didn't out of stubbornness and frustration, but I wasn't going to miss out on that glass of Seven Daughters white wine at $17 a bottle. I better have Devin warn his family ahead of time that if anyone messes with me at Christmas dinner for having one glass of wine I will probably cry then too.

I had another one at CVS. I had a wallet filled with extra bucks, but I didn't get my totals right and a line was forming behind me so I was irritated that I had to pay out of pocket. I spazzed out on Addison, Devin and the CVS guy. I felt so bad later that I apologized to Addison, Devin and called CVS to apologize to them too. Hopefully I can show my face in there again.

It's getting to the point where I'm getting lots and lots of comments and critiques from people about my pregnancy. I had forgotten about that part. Everyone means well, but sometimes enough is enough. I've had people bluntly ask me "So how much weight have you gained?" Is it ever ok to say that? This man at work tonight who was in his mid 60's looked me over once and said "yeah, you'll go early." Ok.... He must have had his special labor predicting glasses on or something. Maybe I should invest in a pair of those. I really don't mind getting advice and stuff, especially from friends and family (I'll need lots of advice about having TWO kids and not just one), but sometimes it'd be nice just to blend in with everyone else. I am sure you all have had your share of weirdo comments. One blogger I read a while back had everyone post their most hurtful/weird infertility or miscarriage comments and I couldn't believe some of the stuff I read. So I know it's not just me going through this! I'm sure I've dished out some of that stuff too.

Let's end this post on a positive note! I listened to my first Christmas music of the season tonight! I played Drummer Boy by Josh Groban three times on the way to work. Leave it to Josh to turn one of the dumbest songs of the season into a musical masterpiece.

Addison didn't even eat any turkey, but she was still pretty exhausted from the day.

Here's the first of many "getting into mom's makeup" pictures. This time it was the mascara. She'll learn someday that eyebrows and eyelashes aren't the same thing.

Friday, November 28, 2008


I knew I loved David Crowder for a reason....

Please see this post if this doesn't make sense!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

1 am CVS shopping adventure

Yeah, I went there at 1 am. My mom thought I was insane. She tried to talk me out of going, but I was too excited. Thankfully Leigh Ayn was wide awake and venture out also. Even though she lives in Las Vegas, it was nice to have another equally obsessed CVS fan out there doing the same thing. I didn't have any extra bucks to roll in (sad...) so I spent about $35 out of pocket, but I got $52 extra bucks back. Plus all the free stuff was some of my favorite in the world!

Today is going to be a nice, relaxing day with the fam. Food, wine, and quality time make for a happy girl. :)

I'm considering venturing out tomorrow. Still haven't decided yet! It might be fun....

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I'm going to do it!

I'm going to make my own pie crust. I've never done this before. I usually use Pillsbury, but whenever I try to prebake with those things, they flop over. So I'm going to give it a whirl. This is a big deal for someone who is as competitive as I am. I can't just make a dessert. IT HAS TO BE THE BEST DESSERT IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD!!! We're not even talking about anyone who will really notice (my parents, my brother, Devin and Addison). Wish me luck on my venture. I don't bake stuff that much.

Here are the tips I've gathered thus far:

Keep everything really, really cold
Don't over work the dough
Work fast

Any other tips would be greatly appreciated.

Target has pecans for only 2.33 for a 8 oz. bag of chopped ones. That's pretty dang cheap. Cheaper than Aldi. Just thought you might want to know!

How Christian is your cubicle?

This is another masterpiece from Seriously, I don't know how he came up with some of these! Hysterical....

Christian Cubicle Point System:

1. You removed one of your three cubicle walls and replaced it with a Thomas Kinkade painting. = +5 points

2. You have a souvenir from your mission trip in your cubicle. = +2 points

3. It was a “fun mission trip” e.g., you were witnessing to people on the beach in Hawaii or skiers at Aspen. = 0 points

4. Your mouse is shaped like a Jesus fish. = +1 point

5. You have a local Christian radio station playing at all times. = +1 point

6. You have a loop of sermon podcasts playing at all times. = +2 points

7. You have that Carman song with the devil cameo playing at all times. = +3 points

8. You have Joshua 24:15 hung up and crossed out “As for me and my house” and instead wrote, “As for me and my cubicle.” = +1 point

9. It’s cross stitched = +2 points

10. You got rid of your office chair and instead sit in a tiny section of pew you got from a church they were tearing down. = +3 points

11. You removed the number 6 from your keyboard to prevent ever accidentally slipping and typing 666. = + 1 point

12. You have a Bible in your cubicle in plain sight. = +1 point

13. It’s the King James Version = +2 points

14. It’s displayed open on a stand carved from a piece of driftwood you found on the beach during a retreat = +3 points

15. You have a choir "cubicle robe" that you change into when you get back to your desk similar to how Mr. Rogers used to put on a different sweater when he got home. = +4 points

16. One of your drawers is filled with holy water just in case someone wants to get baptized by dunking their head in the drawer above the file folders. = + 5 points

17. You have a sticker that reads. “In case of rapture, this cubicle will be unmanned.” = +1 point

18. During the Christmas cubicle decoration contest you always set up a nativity scene in your cubicle. = +1 point

19. It’s a “live scene” so during the three weeks before Christmas you dress like one of the wise men. = +2 points

20. It includes live animals. = +3 points

21. You nicknamed your cubicle something cool like most youth group rooms, e.g. “da’ zone,” or “xTreme.” = + 2 points

22. In the corner of your whiteboard you have the numbers 4:13 written to subtly remind yourself of Philippians 4:13. = +1 point

23. You wrote out the whole verse on your whiteboard = +2 points

24. Whenever someone comes in your cubicle, you do push ups while reciting, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” = +3 points

25. When people come to gossip, you join in, but always say, “Bless her heart” or “I mean that in Christian love” after you do. = +1 point

26. Coworkers know to come to your cubicle for advice, encouragement and communion wafers because you’ve got a whole bag of em’ in the bottom drawer. =+1 point

27. You have a little computer monitor mirror that helps you see behind you and on it in whiteout you wrote, “I see you and so does Jesus.” = +1 point

28. You have that poster of the cat hanging from a rope with the caption, “Hang in there” to encourage the people around you. = +2 points

29. You crossed out “hang in there” because you thought it was too wishy washy and that cat was kind of a heathen. Instead you scribbled “hang onto Jesus." = +4 points

30. You have a decomposing palm branch from Palm Sunday in your cubicle. = +2 points for each branch.

31. You’ll only hang up your kid’s artwork in your cubicle if it’s something they colored at Sunday school. Clifford and Sesame Street aren’t making the cut. = +1 point

32. You’re not above taking a love offering if more than two people are gathered in your cubicle at the same time. = +1 point

33. You take great offense at the parade of Christian stereotypes presented in this list and printed out the post as a reminder to pray for me = +2 points

How did you score? My current cubicle ranked a sweaty Philistinish 3 points. I’m ashamed of it and me, but mostly it.

If you scored over a 40, you’re working in what I call a “Tempicle.” (Yeah, that’s right, I just mixed the word temple and cubicle.) Under 10 and you’re begging for an ergonomic lightning bolt from heaven.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sunday night with the paper...

Sounds relaxing right? Not for me! Ok can I just say that I am completely putting myself out here right now, and that most of you are going to think I'm a total loser? Ok....

So Addison has had a reddish/slightly goopy eye since yesterday morning. Lovely, I know. Having experienced pink-eye myself at Spring Canyon many, many years ago (yeah that's when Micah lovingly told me I looked like a deformed baby) I didn't think Addison had it bad enough to warrant a visit to urgent care (and the lovely 3 hour wait that would likely ensue). Devin and I went back and forth and back and forth over whether we should take her to the Walgreens clinic (to shell out $20 for a co-pay for them to look at her for 2 minutes). Her eye really didn't look that bad; it wasn't sealed shut or oozing in a gross way. It wasn't even that red. It was just kind of bothering her a little. I decided to go over there with her and I'd see what to do when I got there, saying a little prayer on the way that God would help me to make a good decision. Well it turns out the clinic part isn't opening til my answer! The pharmacist was really nice and looked at her and said it didn't look bad enough that she needed to see a doctor. I grabbed a box of eye drops and the Sunday paper and we were out of there.

I got home and realized an hour later that I had picked up last week's Sunday paper. Grrr.... I didn't need those coupons! I needed this week's paper and coupons!

I finished making Addison's dinner and went back to the store (thankfully it's right down the road)and told them I bought last week's paper and could I please exchange it for this week's. Guess not because they're all sold out! That's ok. CVS is right down the street. I'll get my cash back ($1.61) and grab one down there. Then the guy tells me that because I don't have my receipt I'll have to have store credit. Well what good is store credit going to do me when they don't have the right paper? Most non-broke people wouldn't care about getting $1.61 back, but I don't want to spend over $3 on a paper. I want to buy one paper and I want it to have THIS week's coupons! I told the guy that my receipt is probably at the top of their trash can because I was just there an hour earlier. I told him I'd even go get it out because it seemed sort of wrong to make him dig for it. Then the other clerk said "I'LL DIG! I dont mind!" He found it pretty quickly (thankfully there was nothing gross in that trash) so I got my money and left, feeling like a total idiot (or to be more precise a word that rhymes with numb-sass).

So I went over to CVS, grabbed a paper (yep...correct date), paid and left. They also had TUMS on sale so it wasn't a total waste. Oh pregnancy heartburn how I hate you.

I'm at home, looking through the ads, noting the bargains, casually glancing through my favorite sections (totally bummed that the "At your service" lady is retiring. She rocks.) la la la la........ and I get to the end of the paper and see that the coupons are missing. There is no stinking smartsource in that paper!!!!

Most people would say "oh forget it." But I am not most people. I am a coupon freak. I don't buy the paper to read the paper. I buy it for those shiny pieces of paper heaven.... I WANT MY COUPONS! Who knows? Maybe there are fabulous Thanksgiving coupons in there that I'll need!

So I call CVS and tell them that I bought a paper with no inserts and would it be ok if I go and get one with inserts. They say it's ok. I double check with Devin and make sure that it's worth going back there for it. He says it is. So back in the car I go (again, right down the road...not far) to CVS to get my paper.

My hopes of 4 or 5 inserts (ok I knew there'd be just one...that much I did know) with great coupons were immediately shattered when I pulled out this measly, 4 page smartsource with practically no good coupons. Phew...thankfully there were plenty of old people clotheswear ads just in case I needed to get Devin a holiday cardigan with cats on it, or a pair of flannel lined elastic waist jeans for my brother.

I was pretty pissed. Honestly, if I had looked at those coupons I don't think I ever would have bought a stinkin' paper in the first place. All of that for nothing.

I guess there's no big lesson to learn (check before you buy a paper?) Just thought my sad little story would give you a little laugh. If anything, maybe it will make you feel like less of a loser tonight!

Friday, November 21, 2008

I love Great Clips

I wish I could be one of those moms who could cut their kids' hair, but I'm not. I tried last year and it ended very, very badly. Let's just say Addison could probably get out the scissors and give herself a better cut than the disaster that I created. So we go to Great Clips and I pay about $10 for a little cut. Addison loves it! She loves sitting in the big chair, and she holds very, very still.

I had a doctor's appointment today! I'm just about 27 weeks along. Tomorrow I'll hit the 90 day mark where I can return anything I buy! I will admit that I did cave and buy a boy outfit. It was only $3.72 for a little jacket and pants outfit, but I am sure I jinxed myself and will have a girl. These are the names we like:


Devin isn't that crazy about Willow for this reason:

Yep, the movie. From 1988. I keep telling him it's not the dwarf's name, but that adorable little redheaded baby. I love the name, but this baby feels so much like a boy I don't know if we'll be able to use it! We'll see what happens....

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lil Update for you!

Well I haven't updated for awhile and it's because there's just nothing that exciting happening for me!

I had my first ever chiropractor experience last week. The place was a little too weird for me. Perhaps it's because I picked a place with "wellness" in the title and not just chiropractor. It smelled like lavender and all of the employees had smiles plastered on that seemed too "Stepford Wives" to me. The doctor I met with was very sweet and seemed very professional, but then afterward she said "we hug around here. Can I hug you?" It kinda weirded me out. I'm all about the hugging, but the whole scene was a little too hippy dippy for me. Plus they didn't have the best hours for my crazy schedule.

I'm gonna try a different place!

Other than that, same old same old. How about that crazy Biggest Loser last night? I am sure every viewer tuned in to watch the wrath of Vicky take place. I know I did! I am excited about Top Chef tonight.

I'm getting extra excited for Thanksgiving, one of my all-time favorite holidays. I love to eat and I love quality time with people.

Here's what else we have at our Thanksgiving (Teetsel clan):
Turkey, marinated in Williams-Sonoma brine stuff. Roz sent it a few years ago, and it made it so good we had to keep buying it.

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

3-Corn Casserole (or Corn Souffle)

Stuffing. Devin likes oyster stuffing because he is weird (but kudos to Roz for raising an adventurous eater). My mom will probably make a little pot just for him because she favors Devin like you would not believe and he knows it.

Relish Tray

Rolls (made from Hot Roll Mix). They are scrumptious.


Plus I am bringing the most wonderful dessert of all time to my parents' house. It's called Pumpkin Pie Cake. It's Amanda's mom's recipe and it is absolutely the best dessert you will ever eat. Ever. I am salivating just thinking about it. I'll also make some pecan pie because Devin and my dad like it. It's low on my totem pole of desserts.

What do you guys have?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

My Favorite Things

Keri posted this idea on her blog and I thought it was so much fun to read that I would do it too. The only problem: how do you pick just 10?

1. Drinking coffee. I LOVE coffee. It's the best for me if it's got a little bit of Flavored Creamer, but I still love a good Starbucks with a little half&half and sprinkle of vanilla (where can you buy that stuff) and cinnamon. I don't really drink it for the caffeine aspect like some people; it's just so warm and wonderful and good.

2. Going out to eat. The Cheesecake Factory is my all-time favorite restaurant. I've gone there for almost every birthday since I was 18, but I like to go out to eat for breakfast just as much. I think it's because I do pretty much all the cooking around here that it's a nice treat to not have to.

3. My job. I absolutely love my job at Babygap. It's so much fun to help people pick out cute outfits (I live vicariously through them while on the Dave Ramsey Plan), and I work with wonderful people. I also cannot deny that I'd miss the discount horribly. I just got a $90 coat at Old Navy for $33 thanks to said discount!

4. My favorite shows. LOST (one of the first things I said when I found out my due date is in February was "oh no! That's when LOST premiers! What if I miss it?"), American Idol, The Biggest Loser, Top Chef, and of course, The Office.

5. Perfume. I'm a perfume-aholic. I love spraying on new scents and I get excited to walk through Dillards (teasing the hyper salesladies ready to pounce on me like perfume selling vultures) on my way to work to try out a new fragrance.

6. Scented Candles. I wish I could fill my whole house with them and that they weren't so pricey.

7. Gum. I love gum! I'm so jealous of the biggest loser contestants because they have baskets of gum all around the house.

8. Mix 93.3 It's our pop station. I love pop music. It makes me happy. Someday Addison's going to complain that I'm too old to like the music she likes, but for now, I enjoy looking back at Celia and Addison in their carseats rocking back and forth to Rhianna.

9. Coupons. My mom used to clip coupons and take them to the commissary and then show us how much she saved. She definitely passed that on to me, but little did she know I'd turn into a coupon clipping freak! I love a deal...

10. Ice Cream. It's one thing that always goes in the grocery cart. I'm not picky about the brand (that Hy-vee brand is actually pretty dang good), but Devin and I have got to have our ice cream. I like it with tons of stuff either mixed in or on top (or both) ESPECIALLY cool-whip! Or that super delicious wonderful chocolate shell! Yumm-O!

I added one more:
11. Bubble Baths. Our tub is sort of small, but someday I'd love to have one of those gigantic ones, with JETS! They're not as relaxing when your 2 year old insists on climbing in with you and you have to try to read your magazine while getting splashed, avoid sitting on a plastic duck, and explain what breasts are (I just point to her little nipples and say "Look! You've got some too!...that seems to work for now).

What are your top 10 or 11 faves?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The things you stumble upon at 1 a.m.

Found a pretty amazing website from another blog called This is a Christian ministry that exists to help people with porn addictions. I watched the latest video, and was blown away that this ministry was invited to have a booth at a gay porn event in Las Vegas. They were there in their "Jesus Loves Porn Stars" t-shirts, handing out bibles and spreading Christ's love to all of the "attendees." As I watched this mesmerizing video, I started with the judgemental stuff like "well, they sure are acting like this is all ok." or "sure Jesus loves them, but he sure hates what is going on." I had to stop myself (outloud...I've been talking to myself outloud a lot lately) and say "Marie would you EVER have the guts to go to something like that and hand out bibles and tell these drag queens and gay porn stars that Jesus loves them? No? Then quit judging!" It was pretty cool stuff. And sure, there were the "typical" signholding evangelicals outside yelling that all of those people were going to hell and that they better learn to fear God before it's too late, bla bla bla but which Christian group was making more of an impact? I'm gonna go with the folks inside...

Anyway, I also looked through the message boards on the site and was deeply saddened by the ways in which porn is literally ruining people's lives. One woman pleaded for prayers for her family because her husband of 22 years got "bored" and ran off with a woman he met at a strip club. I also saw post after post of men who are trying to make it through a day (or heck, even an hour) battling this addiction.

It's almost 2 a.m. and I should be sleeping right now, but I'm kind of glad God put all this on my heart. It's good for me to have another dose of compassion and humility.

Kind of a weird post huh? Tomorrow I promise I'll be back to blogging about adventures in toddler land!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

He says it best...

I keep telling you people to go over to Stuff Christians Like, but I think because it's a copycat of Stuff White People Like, no one thinks it'll be worth it. You're wrong! It's awesome. He's (Jon) funny, but also has some amazing thoughts. Today I thought he said it so well, I might as well just copy the whole darn thing with hope that you might read it.

From Stuff Christians Like:

#437. Living better or new?

I keep failing. I'm trying to do better. I'm trying to improve the way I think and be less selfish but it's not working. I was reminded of this last Saturday at a charity organization near our house.

A group in our town runs a small store to raise money and provide household items to the community. My wife and I thought it would be a good idea to buy a bunch of children's books at the store that we could then donate to the church where my daughter attends preschool. So the whole family loaded up and spent about 30 minutes inside what is essentially a thrift store.

While we were sorting through books, two random high school students that were volunteering came over and began restocking the shelves. In my head, I instantly started to think, "Oh no, they're going to think I'm poor because I shop here. I won’t look cool in front of them. I'm ashamed."


"No wait, maybe I'm ashamed because I'm not poor and I'm shopping here and they think I shouldn’t be. They don’t know we're donating the books to a church and will think we're ripping off this store. We can afford, shouldn’t we be shopping there and not at some thrift store? And, if we were really a good Christian family, led by a good father, we should be here volunteering on a Saturday, not shopping."

Round and round I went in my head until I finally landed on the thought that I was the most selfish, self-absorbed person on the planet. Who cares what two complete strangers think? How arrogant of me to think they were analyzing why I was there? Why am I still like this?

I've tried to get better. I promise I have. My bookshelf is littered with self help books about focus and attitude and purpose and drive. I think a lot about changing my thoughts and trying to fix the way I look at the world and how I can improve myself. But it’s not working. And I don't think it ever will, because God is a God of new, not better.

I want him to slightly improve me or enhance my existing life and He keeps saying no.

He keeps showing me that I've been misreading 2 Corinthians 5:17. I read it as, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is an improved creation; the old has gone, the better has come." But that's not what it says, matter of fact, that's not what it shouts. What it really reads is:

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”

But I forget that. Sometimes I act like the Bible is a self help book. I treat it like a self help book for a better marriage, a better attitude at work and an easier life. That's not what it is though. It's the word of God, and His word is riddled with the idea of "new."

The great thing is that new isn’t my job. I'm not in charge of renewing my mind. I can't fix me with me and God knows it. When David prays in Psalm, 51: "Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." He's not asking God to give him the tools to renew his own heart, he's making a request to the only person that can create something new. In Psalm 103, we're called to praise the Lord "who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's." I'm not in charge of building a ladder out of the pit or renewing my own youth. (Big fan of the eagle reference by the way.)

But sometimes new takes longer than we expect. When the process of new appears to slow, we get tempted to help God out. To add our bit of “better” to what He’s doing and we end up in a thrift store with a mind wracked with shame trying to remember some pearls of self help wisdom. The cool thing is that God's ability to perform the miraculous is not limited to our ability to see it. We don’t have to understand His process of “new” for it to become true in our lives.

In Isaiah 43: 18-19 it says:
“See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the desert

and streams in the wasteland.”

I love that. It feels like God is saying. "You should see this new thing I'm doing. You are going to love it! What's that, you can't? Doesn't matter, I'm still going to make a way in the desert. Just because you can't perceive it doesn't mean I'm going to stop making streams in the desert.”

That's more Bible verses than I've ever put in a post, but I'm really tired of trying to live an improved life. It’s exhausting. I'm done with better. I want what God wants. I want new.

Death to better, long live new.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I am working on a project and have to print off about 120 or so photos. That can get a little pricey, and I hate waiting in line at the little photo machine. I decided to try uploading my pics to different companies and seeing what kind of deals I could score. Turns out CVS will give out 50 free prints and this other company called Winkflash gives out 50 free prints too. I uploaded 50 to (it does take a really long time, but again, it takes forever at the store too) and will pick them up in a couple of days and 69 to (only .09 cents a picture after the 50). I'll pay nothing at CVS and only $3.92 ($2.49 for shipping) at Winkflash. For 119 pictures. If I went to the store and got them for .19 each (one hour) that would cost me $22.

Like I needed another reason to go to CVS...

Need a laugh?

Have any of you been back over to cake wrecks lately?

I'd recommend it if you're in need of a good laugh. The "$500" cake video w/ Mario Lopez was hysterical, but not as funny as the author's comments underneath.

I'm so glad I know about that blog.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Marie + Aldi = True Love

$1.29 for a whole BAG of apples.

Aldi I do not like your coffee creamer and yogurt. You put sneaky trans fats and saturated fats in there, but I like everything else about you. I don't know what I would do without your amazing cheapness.

Now when can we get a Trader Joe's out here? We Kansans deserve some of your whole bean coffee (mmm...Wintry Blend) too! :::cough:::Christmas:::cough

Reading Hour with Pooh and Piglet

Addison was reading Curious George to Piglet and when I said "aww...that's so nice!" and took a picture...

Celia started reading a book to Pooh, saying "Celia read book too...that so nice!" Guess she wanted to get in on the picture action too. It is nice to no longer have to chase your kid around with the camera. Addison loves having her picture taken, and apparently so does Celia!

Not sure what we'll do today on this cold, windy day. Our yard is in major need of TLC. Maybe the girls can help me pick up some leaves.

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Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Ranting and Raving Lunatic

Today I was running late for working in the nursery at church. If I hadn't been so late I wouldn't have been so frantic about finding a spot, but I noticed a space right up in the front. Hurray! This would make it a lot easier for me to carry Addison with my ever-growing belly in to church. I pull closer only to find that there wasn't an extra space. Someone did the thing where they take up two spots, parking their precious vehicle in the middle.

I hate this so much. It just makes me so mad. If any of you guys do this to "protect your car from nicks and scratches" here's what it says to everyone else:

"my car is more important than any of you people."

I guess I wouldn't have an issue with it if they parked way out in the back of the lot, where there are extra spaces, but right in front? At church? One nice touch was the large cross dangling from the rearview mirror.

I know it's dumb to get so worked up over something so small, but it bugs me because our church has a lot of people seeking Christianity and I can't help but wonder if someone was turned off by our church because of this situation. Then again, maybe it was a visitor who did that. Who knows.

I didn't say anything to anyone, didn't leave a mean note on the windshield, didn't slash the tires or kick the bumper, didn't do anything. Just decided to blog about it.

About 30 minutes ago, Devin asked Addison to throw some receipts away. She said "no" so we left her sitting on the couch, crying until she did what was asked. Guess she won this one:

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Addison should be in bed

but instead she's trying on Devin's socks and being a goofball. It's our own fault, really. We got her all hopped up on DQ softserve. At 8 pm she should have been in the bathtub or quietly calming down with a book before bed. Nope. Yours truly (well Devin was equally responsible. He got the B1G1 free coupon) decided we should all go to Dairy Queen and get blizzards. So here we are. It's 9:24 at night and she's running around the house singing the Backyardigans theme song (just the end of it...over...and over again) while Devin and I are both waiting for each other to put her to bed.

Those blizzards sure were good. Chocolate Extreme for me and Pumpkin Pie for Devin. A cone for Addison.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Thankfully I'll get to keep caring for my little Celia-bug a little bit longer! I'm grateful for your wonderful, encouraging comments and prayers. I appreciate that none of you let me stew in self-pity about this whole thing...thanks! I really thank God for giving me a huge sense of peace this past couple of days. I'm going to keep praying that Kyle and Julie will find a wonderful person to take care of Celia for a month or so after I have my baby. I know God will take care of that too.

Oh, and if any of you are interested (or you know of someone who might be interested) in making a decent amount of money for a month in February/March by taking care of Celia let me know! You'll have to give her back to me (I'll fight you...) but it's a great way to get an idea of what nannying is like without a long-term commitment.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Hard Stuff

I've been watching this little bug since she was 2 or 3 months old. I've grown pretty attached to her these past (almost) two years. In fact, in my heart, she's my 2nd daughter. Her little smile lights up my face and her zest for life brings me a ton of laughter. Oh, and unlike Addison, who won't "perform," Celia will say anything you teach her (which could be a bad thing) but is mostly funny like when she said "yucky jayhawk" out of the blue at the park when we were talking to a KU mom (Kyle taught her that one) and when she kept saying "Nobama!" over and over again yesterday afternoon because she knew it made me laugh. The best part is watching Addison's face light up every. single. day when Kyle's car pulls in the driveway with her little friend. They may fight and bicker like siblings, but Addison truly loves Celia.

Unfortunately, tomorrow Celia is going to a different daycare for the day as a trial run. As you know I'm expecting a baby in February. The Taylors had someone lined up for a few weeks while I recuperate, but this person backed out the other day. I found out on Monday that the only other person they could find said she could only fit Celia in if she starts watching her now. Like next week. So tomorrow, they're going to see how it goes. If all goes well, Celia will probably go to from now on. This is truly heartbreaking for me. The thought of someone else getting to hold her and care for her brings tears to my eyes. I am also feeling worried about the financial aspect of the situation. All in all, I could really use your prayers. I am probably jumping the gun in all of this because Celia hasn't even gone to the new person yet, but I am feeling sad and worried. I also ask that you pray for the Taylors. This decision isn't easy for them either (this is their child we're talking about here. They obviously want the best for her) and I know I sprung it on them by needing some time off in February. I need prayer for peace, regardless of what happens.

Thanks guys! I'll let you know what happens...

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Saturday, November 1, 2008

A little Saturday Evening Controversy

So an old friend of mine recently had a baby and I noticed one of her other friends whom I've never met comment "I'm so proud of you for going natural." That comment always hits a nerve. I know a lot of you have delivered babies that way, and I know a lot of you have strong feelings that it is the best way. I respect that, and I can understand the reasoning. I also know that it is very difficult work and you deserve lots of praise and credit for making it through. Labor hurts. A lot.

But doesn't a woman who has an epidural deserve the same kind of praise for going through a tough labor? Was her experience less meaningful because she chose pain medication? Isn't the end result still a beautiful miracle from God?

With Addison, my water broke reallllly early in the morning (4 am), but wasn't having any contractions. They started at about 8 am at the hospital and it hurt! Bad! By 3 or 4 pm, I was still only dilated to a 3 (for those of you unfamiliar with birth jargon that means practically nothing) so I was discouraged and it was just hurting too bad. I was done. I had the epidural and it was such a relief that I can't even explain. Just look at pictures at my old blog @ (June 2006). Check out those before epidural and after epidural pictures! In that situation I did what I could and just couldn't handle anymore. I want to make it really clear that not one single person who reads this has ever said anything hurtful to me personally, so please don't think "oh no! Did I say something to Marie when Addison was born?" You didn't. I promise!

I also want to make it clear that going through labor naturally is a beautiful thing. It's awesome for a woman to get to a point where she thinks she literally cannot continue, but somehow manages to overcome it. That's amazing, and a definite triumph for someone. But then there's also people (like me) who literally can't. It's just too much and it's too discouraging to think you might have to continue that way for 10 more hours.

I guess my point in all of this is not to dissuade you from saying "I'm so proud of you!" to a woman who labors naturally, but to remind you that those of us who have taken the medication deserve to hear it too.

End of rant. Thank you for your time!

Comments are welcome (whether you agree or disagree)!

P.S. Leigh Ayn, I don't know how your mom chose to give birth to you, but I'm so glad she did! HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I love you and can't imagine the past 10 years of my life without your wonderful little self right there with me. You are more special to me than you'll ever know. Enjoy P.F. Changs!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Why I don't do rebates....

I went on and on about that amazing deal on the Just For Men haircolor. You know the one you could literally make $10 for buying at CVS. Well I was getting ready to send in my mail-in rebate and realized the dang proof of purchase got thrown away somehow. BOOOOOOO!!!! Totally sucks. I still technically earned $2 for buying it, but that extra 8 bucks would have been nice. I knew there was a reason I steered clear of those blasted things. Something always seems to happen. What? What's that you say? It wouldn't have happened had I been more organized and put it in safe place, like an envelope marked "rebates"? No, no,'s the rebate's fault. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I did look at my receipt today and noticed that I've saved over $800 at CVS since January. Is that cool or what?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

23 Weeks

Hmm. It doesn't look so big in the picture, but I swear I feel enormous!

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"Look me Mama! Look me!"

Kids notice everything. The bra may be upside down, and hopefully the girls aren't that droopy, but yeah, kids notice everything. Aren't those jammies cute though? They're fleece and extremely warm (good for certain stubborn girls who refuse to wear blankets, even though her room is frigid at night).

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Cleaning is hard

Ok this is why a lot of parents of babies/toddlers don't like to clean. You might be able to tell that my sofa, tables, mirrors, and windows are sparkling clean because I dusted them. If you look in my bathroom you'll see there isn't a smidge of soap scum in sight. All of the dishes in the kitchen have been washed, and the counters wiped clean. There's even BBQ pork in the slow cooker, BUT THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS IN THE MEANTIME! While you're busy cleaning one part of the house, the contents of the rest of the house are emptied out onto the floor. Images of "the man rolling the boulder up the hill, only to have it fall back down again" are coming to mind. Well now I'm too tired to do any more cleaning. I'll have to tackle the rest of this in my daily mad dash before Devin gets home.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

Jill's Amazing-ness

Check out this wonderful piece of writing my friend Jill did for her friend's wedding: WOW! I stole this straight from her blog. I just thought it was so beautiful that my friends and family needed to see it as much as her readers.

two good friends were married this weekend and asked me to write/read something for their big day. i was more than excited at the opportunity but more than nervous because they didn’t want to hear it until the actual actual cermony. yikes! (see text below)

all went more than well and it was one of the most memorable celebrations of life and love. congratulations, ryan and kelly. much love to you both.

My love for you is not enough;
It is not perfect, it fails you and it hurts you.
Sometimes it gets angry and does things it shouldn’t.
It curses and cries; it questions and it fights.
My love has limits and conditions.
It sees more imperfections than beauty, it tells more lies than truths.
My love is selfish and self serving; it is impatient and sometimes unkind.
My love for you is not enough to sustain the vow I’m here to make.

So today, I choose not only to love you with my love,
Today, I also choose His.

I choose to love you with a love from Christ that is pure and perfect; a love which gives without conditions and surrenders without expectations.
I choose to love you with His sustaining love when the emotions of today have passed and the harsh reality of our imperfections has returned.
I choose to love you with His sacrificial love by putting your needs ahead of my own, your desires before mine, and your dreams above my dreams.
In selflessness and submission, through the known and uncertain, I choose to love you with the unfailing love of our Father.
I make this choice not once or even twice. But as He continues to pursue me, I choose to pursue you in love each day and each hour and each moment for the rest of our lives.

As Christ laid down His life in love for us, I choose to lay down my life in love for you.
On my own, I will fail; my love for you is not enough.
So today, I choose not only to love you with my love,
Today, I also choose His

Saturday, October 25, 2008


This is what I got from babycenter in my inbox:

"Your 2-year old: Normal? Or Gifted?"

Some parents would immediately dive in to find out, just positive that their tiny tot is genuinely gifted and anxious to craft him/her into the little genius they were born to be. Not me. I am so not going there. I mean, COME ON! Can't we just let kids be kids? Addison probably watches a little too much TV (she knows all the Backyardigans by name, and Devin and I were having a conversation about which character lives in which house; we even rewound it to make sure....seriously) but she's an all around entertaining, imaginative, and happy little toddler. Why mess with that at such a young age?

Besides, what parent DOESN'T think their kid is gifted at this age? Geez you'd think Addison had won a nobel prize the way we carry on about her saying "bless you" when we sneeze. I could just see a parent taking that quiz and finding out his/her kid is "just normal" and being depressed about it for a week.

Anyway, excuse the tangent.... just another one of my many soapboxes. It's a good thing I have this blog. Devin thanks you, my faithful readers! Otherwise he'd have to listen to all this...


Tonight was the annual Koehler Pumpkin Carving party (Em's parents). It was our 4th one and we always have a great time. I always get excited about it every year, so Koehlers, you have to continue the tradition...forever! It was fun this year because Addison got into the whole pumpkin carving thing. Devin and I started out trying to do Jesus (yeah we're extra holy like that) but he was too hard and the shading got all messed up. So we settled on Barney (on the other side of the pumpkin...ha!). That made Addison extra happy because Barney is right up there with Jesus for her. Actually he may be higher on the list, but that seems pretty normal...for now. I'll be worried in a few years if that still hasn't changed. Anyway, we forgot our camera (as usual) but I'm sure someone else will put them up on facebook, so I'll let you simmer in anticipation for our Barney pumpkin.

Night night!


Stay tuned in January for my frequent posts about American Idol, my all-time favorite show (next to LOST). I was a David Cook fan, but I thought that cute lil Mormon David Archuleta was pretty great too. Plus I just love this song! Eric thinks it sounds like CCM (Christian Contemporary Music) and thus mocks me endlessly for liking it. Well I'm down with the Philips, Craig and Dean (and so is Amanda by the way) and who doesn't like cute little adorable Bebo (ahem..Amanda..slight obsession in college)? So even if this song is beyond cheese I don't care. It's great and it makes me happy. Plus I'm used to being mocked for my musical selections. The way I look at it is I could listen to music that makes me happy or I could listen to music to be a pretentious music fan and awe everyone with my excellent taste. Do you know any pretentious Barry Manilow fans? Nope. Just silly old ladies, my mom, Leigh Ayn, and me. So Eric, this one's for you! Enjoy!

It wouldn't let me embed the video, so go here

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Picky Eater

Addison goes through phases with her eating. Sometimes she'll try almost anything and say "I like this!" Other times she won't eat anything but peanut butter and jelly, spaghettios and mac & cheese. We're going through a picky phase right now. It frustrates me. Whenever I get down about my daughter consuming all this crappy food, I try to think about Rachel's husband, Brandon, and my brother, Eric. They both loath vegetables, but turned out to be healthy, robust, good looking guys. Phew!

Maybe next week she'll be more cooperative. Let's hope so.


Addison ate some roasted carrots that I made with my chicken. She gobbled them up! Hallelujah! A vegetable!


At my first doctor's appointment I asked my midwife (yes I'm planning on having my baby in a barn. Devin is going to boil up some hot water and that's probably all we'll need. Maybe a knife of something) if it was ok for me to continue lifting weights and how strenuous. She told me it was fine, but that I probably shouldn't do squats and nothing laying on my back. Well I checked out this babyfit website and it had preggos doing squats with those big balls so I thought..."well if this website says it's ok, it must be!" So here I am at the gym, a couple of days ago, ball up against the mirror wall, doin' my squats thinking how great and fit I was being. "Hey trainer! Look at me! Yeah I'm hardcore like that!" Well yesterday I could hardly walk, and today it still hurts just as bad. The midwife was right. I pulled something; something that doesn't normally get pulled and it HURTS! Ouch! I didn't have any issues until I lifted one of the girls out of their carseats and then it really hurt. It still hurts and I feel like a major idiot. She even gave me a pretty good reason for not doing squats: those ligaments are stretching out as the baby is growing so you don't want to risk tearing anything. Makes pretty good sense right? Too bad in my effort to be "turbo pregnant woman" I ignored that sensible advice.

If you've read my previous post, you might be asking "Marie how can you be turbo pregnant woman if you consumed an entire bag of candy corn in one sitting?"

Good question! It's because I have issues with moderation. My personality is "all or nothing." I can't just go for a light walk; I have to do major hardcore exercise! If I haven't eaten very well, instead of trying to make better choices I usually just say "screw it" and give up. I know this type of thinking doesn't work for life, and it's certainly not the way I want to raise my kids to think.

Anyway, I think I learned my lesson. In both regards. Owwwwwwwww!

Side note for those of you who have yet to understand the sarcastic nature of my writing: I am not having the baby in a barn. Or my house. I'm going to the hospital.


Announcement for non-facebookers ie: family members/friends that read this blog but don't leave any comments (yeah, you know who you are):

GAP friends and family is going to be Nov. 13-16 this year. That means 25% off at Gap, Babygap, Gapkids, Banana Republic, Old Navy and the outlets w/ 5% going to charity (not sure which one yet..I think I get to pick again. Last time I chose the Global Aids Fund.) Email me at w/ your email address if you want a coupon!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Ok before we had kids I loved the rain. It meant a little laziness was in order. That isn't working so much for me today! I need to get outside to the park to let these little monsters (cute monsters) run free!

Maybe we'll just go to the mall....

Anyway, do any of you watch the Biggest Loser? I am hooked on this show, but I'm awfully suspicious of it too. Last night I was wondering if they were making up the weight loss numbers (8 pounds in one week? Seriously?) and pretending to lose more. Like, you know, acting! "OH WOW! 8 POUNDS!" when really they lost 1 or 2. I know they really are losing that weight, but it just seems so unbelievable. Plus where does all the skin go? Shouldn't they have lots of extra skin hanging off at the end? Does it tighten up because they're working out and lifting weights as well as dieting? Amanda, I saw that you had a FuzziBunz expert check out your blog. Well I need a Biggest Loser expert to answer these questions!
Where were the product placements last night? No Jenni-O turkey product placement, or Ziplock steam bag "OH WOW WHAT AN EASY WAY TO MAKE DINNER", or even a 100 calorie pack comment like "THESE ARE SO FILLING AND SO DELICIOUS"...yeah right...I could eat 5 of those and still not feel full. I really do love the show. It's always fun to see how amazing they look at the end and how much happier, healthier everyone is.

Speaking of dieting, can I confess right here, right now that the other day I ate almost a whole bag of Candy Corn? Is that gross or what? I was watching tv and not really paying attention, just shoveling it in and next thing you know there were only a few measly pieces left. It wasn't one of those huge bags, but I still wouldn't recommend this idea to any of you. It makes your stomach really upset! And yeah, it was the free candy I got at CVS, so I guess at least I did my binging for free. still makes me gag just thinking about it.

One more thing for this post: Addison has started saying "Oh my gosh!" Heh.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


This is what Addison wanted to wear to the gym today. Hmm... I'm not sure about this one! Oh what the heck!


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Monday, October 20, 2008

For Brandi (and everyone else too)

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Devin's new hobby is running. In college I called Devin "sport-a-day" because he could decide to do something and be really good at it right away. Let's be honest: athletic guys=HOT! Therefore Devin=EXTRA SPICY HOT! But I digress....

Anyway Devin ran his first race today (5k) downtown in the Power and Light district. I wanted to see him run through the finish line. The race started at 7:30, so I had limited time to drag my overtired butt out of bed, get Addison out of bed, force feed Gus his overpriced medicine, make breakfast, and get downtown to park and stuff. Unfortunately my alarm clock never went off, so I woke up at 6:45.

I still managed to get all of that stuff done (except for the pill thing because my cat refused to eat it), park, and see Devin run across the line cheering for him! HURRAY!

He ran it in 21 minutes! GOOD JOB YOU SEXY RUNNER!

(I wish I had a picture to post, but grabbing the camera didn't make it into this morning's agenda).

He just informed me that in my haste I left Addison's wet diaper on his pillow, leaving a wet spot. Oops.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

If I blog it, it will happen

That's the way it works right?

Have you guys taken those meyers briggs personality tests? Well if you have, you'll know what I'm talking about. If you haven't, you should. It's fascinating!

Well my letters are ENFP (but pretty close to ESFP) Let's focus on the P:

There are two types of people in this world: J's and P's. J stands for judging. These people like order and organization and planning. They also like working to a schedule. J's are also better at making decisions. The J may feel a sense of urgency about making decisions, but once the decision is made, they generally feel better. Want a good example of a J? Check out Edi's blog! I love you Edi!

Then there are the P's like yours truly. We're pretty much the opposite of all that. We like to have our "options open" and generally dislike deadlines or schedules. Most P's also hate making decisions and tend to struggle with a decision even after it's made.

The problem is it's really hard to be a mom when you're a P. I guess in some ways it's good because I'm generally a pretty flexible person. I love to do things with friends during the day, even if it interferes with naptime, but my distaste for all things scheduled also makes it hard because I think I tend to waste a lot of time during the day. Plus Addison and Celia both do a lot better with some routines during the day. So I need to make a change to some of my nasty habits as of late:

-Staying up till 1:30 am and then sleeping in till 8, just before Kyle (Celia's dad) knocks on the door and answering the door like a zombie
-trying to do my quiet time with Barney/Backyardigans in the background. Putting off planning meals (because even though it works, I still hate doing it), waiting too long to go to the gym, the store, etc because I'd rather sit on the couch and drink coffee and hope the things will get done on their own.

Here's my new plan (and I have to stick to it because it's really not that hard). I'm putting it on the blog because that way I have some accountability.

Go to bed at a decent time (10:30 would be the best)
Wake up before 7 am. so I can drink my coffee, eat something and do my bible study without screaming and interruptions. I should also get dressed so that Kyle no longer has to see me in my pj's (Gym clothes are slightly better) when he drops Celia off around 8.
Feed Addison breakfast when Celia comes.
Immediately take girls over to the gym (if it's a gym day)
Use the rest of the morning to work on laundry, errands, hanging out with friends, feeding girls lunch, etc. I also won't be such a zombie because I've had a little more sleep.

Again, some of you might not think that this is that regimented. Well it is to me. I hate having time constraints. I just want to do what I want to do when I want to do it. The problem is that's really selfish thinking because it's not all about me anymore.

Thanks for letting me post this really boring entry! Tomorrow is a new day....