Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Welcome to Pacey-Con!

OK. So there are many things that I should be doing right now.

I should be feeding Lincoln his breakfast.

I should change Cooper's stinky diaper.

I should convince Mercedes to get off of the couch (where she's currently watching the movie, "Soccer Mom") and make her bed, get dressed, etc.

I should finish cleaning my kitchen before the RS Presidency gets here for my "welcome visit."

I should organize this office.

I should fold the laundry and put another load in the washer.

But instead, I've just been watching this:
If you click on it, you'll be directed to the source and can watch it full-screen.

For all of you "once upon a time" Dawson Creek fans, this is hilarious. I admit it: when I was in college, my apartment had a Dawson night for a while. We also had a Gilmore Girls night. And Pacey was Sarah's favorite. I miss those days.

So now I'll go and cross some of those "shoulds" off of my list.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

life is good


It's been a wild and crazy week for us.

Here's a run-down:

My parents drove us to Washington, and then moved all of our stuff into our house from our storage unit. What's stronger than Superman? 'Cause that's what my dad is. And my mom. I still don't know how they did it.

Grandpa dancing with Lincoln.

After spending a few days in Kurdistan, Brent endured a 25 hour flight and arrived on American soil!!! We got to pick him up on Monday night and it's so great to be together again.

Lincoln just about bit his tongue off. Literally. Poor kid could hardly eat for a few days, plus he had a fever and NO sleep. But he's a trooper and seems to be getting back to his "old-self."

I found Mercedes sitting on the floor in our den crying. In her hand was the note that Grandma wrote to us before returning to Utah.

Grandma and the kids.

I had an ocean view for a few months in Laguna Beach and thought that nothing would top it. I was wrong. This place is AMAZING. It is so beautiful here. AND we have ocean air because we're so close to the Puget Sound. It actually feels a lot like Laguna. Brent and I went running this morning and I was COLD! The neighborhood is quiet and peaceful and beautiful. Tree-lined streets. Three of our neighbors rang our doorbell to welcome us; one gave me a note with ALL of her contact info, including email, one brought yummy fresh cherries, and the other baked cookies. People are so nice and friendly here.

I LOVE my house.

We've been trying to sell some things on craigslist, because our huge furniture just doesn't fit this house. We have about 10 people who want our fridge, but no takers on our sofa and love seat.

Oh - along with moving everything into the house and putting together furniture, my dad also put together all of the IKEA furniture I bought. AND my mom un-packed almost every single box.

Brent went back to work today :(. We missed him.

I'm glad to be in my own home, and I'm OVER THE MOON to be with Brent again, but I miss my mom and dad. Such is life, right?

Now, who wants to come and visit us?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

our turn

Steve did it.

Pete did it.

Now its our turn!

I cannot express how happy I am that soon we will be with Brent in our very own home.

We leave tomorrow!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

independence day

Photograph by Lolli.

I have lots of thoughts bouncing around in my head. And lots of emotion in my heart.

Yesterday we got to go to Brent's brother's house in Nephi for dinner and fireworks. It was so much fun. My sis in-law Nietra's family were there too and we played games and the kids all ran around and jumped on the tramp and played in the dirt. Who could ask for anything more?

The kids and I were even given a special treat: Mercedes and Cooper were invited to spend the night. There is nothing as exciting to my kids as a cousins' slumber-party.

I'd forgotten how easy it is to get just one child ready for church (my lowest-maintenance one - the Linkster). It was a heavenly morning for me. Quiet and calm and peaceful. But as we began to sing the opening hymn this morning, I suddenly felt like BARFING. Big time.

"What on earth is going on with me?" I thought.

I could tell that my stomach problems were "nerve"-related. My dad was on the other end of the pew holding Lincoln, with my mom between us. We were singing the Star Spangled Banner and I was fasting for Brent's safe return home this week. I was thinking of him standing in formation at a hot desert base in Afghanistan where some very mean people are continually showering him with rockets. I was thinking of how excited I am for us to be a complete family unit again, and of how very much I miss him. Then I thought of our first 4th of July together: fireworks at Thanksgiving Point and then our first kiss on my parents' front porch. Three months later we were sealed together by Elder Clayton in the Salt Lake Temple.

And now he's been gone for nine months. Sleeping every night in a far away place where people would love to kill him and his fellow soldiers. I realized why I suddenly FELT so much. Usually I have a Mercedes and a Cooper and a Lincoln distracting me. I don't have time to think of feel! It's nice to know that there's still a "me" inside of me, but I am very grateful that I've had three sweet and spicy children to tend to this past year. Focusing on them and their needs distracts me from mine. What a great blessing it is to be a mother!

After church Lincoln and I took a blissfully looooong nap, and then Sting and I drove down to Nephi to pick up the big kids. They were hitting and yelling at each other as I locked Coop into his car-seat, and I thought of how much I'd missed them! I was away from them for just long enough to not even be frustrated by their fighting. They both conked out as soon as we were on the freeway, and two sleeping kids, Sting and I drove home in peace.

On this Independence Day, I am thankful for my agency. I'm thankful that I have a loving Father in Heaven who listens to me, a Savior who understands me, and the Holy Ghost to comfort me. I am grateful that there are still citizens of this country who are willing to sacrifice their very lives in the name of FREEDOM. I am thankful for parents who love and take care of me and my children. I am thankful for a husband who "thirsts after righteousness" and is gentle and kind and always loving. I am thankful for family and friends who love me, warts and all.

Friday, July 2, 2010

handy manny

On Friday mornings (my mom's day off of work) she goes grocery shopping. This morning she took Mercedes and Cooper with her, while I worked very hard at packing (actually I slept in, and yes - I do feel guilty).

They returned home with a very excited Cooper carrying a (cheap) toy tool belt and safety helmet. He'd talked my mom into buying it for him, "for the drive to Washington." My mom's condition was that she'd wrap it as soon as they got home, and he could open it during our trip next week.

The thing is, Cooper doesn't honor conditions. He's a three-year-old. If he wants something, he always finds a way to get it. He must have the most grating whine. Ever. If you've heard it, you know what I'm talking about. He also likes to scream. And he's stubborn. Much more stubborn than me. He's what the professionals call, "a strong-willed child," something that will be an asset later in life.

Sleep is the only time that Coop is quiet.

So my first thought was, "yeah right. I bet he'll have that open within the half hour."

And he did.

See? It's a talent. He uses this to get what he wants.

Oh, Grandma tried her best. She let Cooper try to wrap it with her. She was so patient with him. But soon enough, he was locked in his room and had hidden the newest toy.

He uses this tool A LOT. We have a whole collection of these photos.

Grandma gave in. (I think that she lasted longer than I would have).

For the rest of the day, Cooper demanded to be called "Handy Manny." His helmet and tool belt were glued on to his person. When we ran errands and I called into the backseat, "how are you doing, Cooper?" His response was an immediate: "I'm NOT Cooper! I'm Handy Manny!!!"

He helped me to carry boxes into the UPS store. We then pretended that Target was a "warehouse" and spent a lot of time playing with Buzz, Thomas, Barbie, and dinosaurs. We picked out two new DS games for our extremely long drive to the great state of Washington.

I had a lot of fun; just me and the Coop.

Oh wait - I mean: just me and the Handy Manny.

By the way, he makes a super-cute Handy Manny.
Too bad my camera is already packed.