Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Important Things

My kids have been sleeping for over three hours...AT THE SAME TIME! And after showering, cleaning, laundering, and dinner prepping (taking meat out of the freezer), I'm bored. So I'm sitting here trying to think up something really clever and life-altering to write about and all that's coming to me is how I want to get a new office chair for Taylor. But I've looked so long and so hard and any chair that has that trendy/"I'm so cool and effortless" component doesn't look entirely comfortable, but then I choose fashion over comfort all the time, so perhaps it's time Taylor started making some important sacrifices around here.
In other news, Isla started crawling! And Theo has started saying words that only Taylor and I can understand! I think our kids are going to be some real geniuses one day.
Well, Theo just started banging his feet against his crib and squeaking in really high pitched tones so I think that means he's awake. But thank goodness I got to write down all those thoughts before he woke up. What a load off.

Monday, March 7, 2016

A Tale of Sleeping In the Same Bed As Your Child

I've never been big on the whole sleeping with your kids thing. I mean, I get the appeal; they're so sweet and cuddly and there's truly nothing better than holding a sleeping child; the way their hair curls from their sleepy sweat, the way they breathe and part their lips just so as they fall into the deepest of sleeps, it's just the thing dreams are made of. But the thing is, it's all pretty magical until you want to go to bed, too.

Theo hasn't slept with us since he was probably two weeks old. He was never a cuddly baby and that trait has persisted as he has grown into a toddler. This last weekend, however, we were in Utah for a wedding.We drove through the afternoon into the night and arrived at Taylor's sister's house well past his bedtime. He was wired, in an unfamiliar place and the kid would. not. sleep. So we finally gave in and decided we would let him fall asleep in our bed with us. I told Taylor to bring him into his pack 'n play as soon as he was sleeping but Taylor thought it would be okay to let him sleep with us just this once, especially since he has having such a hard time. Having many, many nieces and nephews I was prepared for how the night would go, but Taylor, having never slept with a child before thought about how "cute" it would be to have him sleep with us. So, I gave in thinking that maybe this time would be different. And you know? It wasn't.

He eventually fell asleep and that's when the real fun started. Between the time that he fell asleep and Isla woke up for her 3 a.m. feeding it was all kind of a blur. I think I may have slept? Though I'm not entirely sure and lean more towards the not sleeping side of things.

Once fully awake, I scooted towards the edge of the bed to grab Isla out of her own bed and Theo slowly began to make his way to my side until he was sprawled out directly where I had been laying, his head down at the foot of the bed and his feet on my pillow. When I finished feeding Isla I went to move him back over to the middle of the bed but instead he turned over on his stomach and started banging his head on the bed over and over and over again.Why, you ask? Only he knows.

As the head banging subsided, I was eventually able to move him over so I could attempt to fall asleep but it was then that he decided he would rather sleep on top of me rather than beside me, because why wouldn't he want to? I imagine in his one-year-old mind he must have thought, "What is the most uncomfortable position I can lay in so that it affects everyone sleeping on this bed?" And then he thought, "Eureka! (he has a very advanced vocabulary) I'm going to lay my entire body across my mom's chest with my head hanging off one side of her, my feet hanging off the other and then I can kick my dad for rest of the night!" And so he did.

At one point Taylor sat up and said with just enough frustration for me to think it was hilarious, "Theo! Stop. Kicking. Me." But since he was (perhaps?) still asleep the kicking persisted until the break of dawn when Theo made it known that he was actually awake by crawling all over us, pointing at everything in sight and asking, "Wasss dat?"

As Taylor stood up to make his bottle, I said, "Never, ever, ever again." Without turning around he walked out the door and said, "EVER."

The End

Tuesday, December 29, 2015


Sunday is probably my very favorite day of the week. It's relaxing, there's nowhere to be, and you kind of get to put life on hold for just that one day. This last Sunday, however, there were lots of breakdowns, lots of crying, and lots of Taylor and I looking over at each in exasperation laughing and counting down the hours to bedtime. Because some days are just like that.

After both kids were down, Theo for the night and Isla for the next few hours until she would need to eat again, Taylor and I went downstairs and collapsed on the couch. I laid my head on his chest and with the exception of exchanging a few contented sighs, neither of us said a word for the next few minutes. When Taylor did speak again he asked if I wanted to watch something. I told him no. It was quiet and all I wanted to do was enjoy the calmness that enveloped our home in that moment. There is something so peaceful and special to me about having your kids tucked in their warm beds for the night, in their safe places away from the noise of the world, loved and taken care.

And so we laid on the couch together, our legs intertwined, hands holding, and we talked. It felt like we were dating all over again, but better. Because being married will always be better than dating. Always. 

We talked about how our cozy, little rental where we have lived and made 'ours' for the last few years seems to be growing ever-smaller especially since our newest addition has arrived. Together, we dreamed of the day we would own our very own home. We talked about how that home will fit our family and will have a yard for Theo to play in and how one day Isla will join him and how magical it's going to be to watch the two of them grow up and play together. We watched and re-watched a video I had taken of them earlier that day screaming at the top of their lungs and laughed harder and harder each time we watched it. We scrolled through pictures of them and re-lived the moments from each one. 

We (I) talked about my eyelashes and how they are far too short since putting fake ones on over a month ago and now every time the fake ones fall out they bring several of my own eyelashes with them and now my eyes look weird and lash-less. And should I put on more fake ones? Because then I look prettier. Or should I give my real lashes a chance to redeem themselves? *Sigh* These types of things are so hard. Taylor didn't seem to take much interest in the subject though so I kissed him for a little while to make up for it. 

Then we ran out of things to talk about so we turned on Parenthood while Taylor rubbed my feet and then we ate some Dyno Bites, which is the generic brand of Fruity Pebbles, but in a national taste test people liked Dyno Bites better, so I guess you don't always get what you pay for. 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

The Day Isla Grace Was Born

It was Thanksgiving day, Taylor and I were in the kitchen cooking the traditional feast together and as we worked I periodically would experience light and sporadic contractions. It was nothing to be too concerned about and I had experienced them the night before as well. It was 11 days before my due date and I was elated that these contractions meant a baby would soon grace our presence! Later that evening, we went to our friend's where we combined our forces of food and company and ate until we thought we might die. Which, let me tell you, trying to consume your regular dose of fifth helpings  on Thanksgiving while trying to share your stomach space with a 7lb. baby was quite the undertaking but I refused to be defeated! And so conquer I did.

The rest of the night we tried to keep Theo from destroying all the ornaments on our friend's tree, sang karaoke, and I danced to my heart's content with the little kids to ensure to that this baby would come in a timely manner. Nine months pregnant and dancing to 90's music. I was a vision.

We went home that night, put Theo to bed, I whined to Taylor about not wanting to wash my face just as I do every night, eventually did it anyways, went to bed, and then woke up to contractions about 12 minutes apart. They kept me up for a while and around 4:00 a.m. I text my mom, who was not supposed to arrive until the 3rd of December, and told her that I didn't think this baby was going to wait that long to get here. Within the hour she had her flight changed and was due to arrive in Cody that night. And wouldn't you know, just a few short hours after my text to her my contractions stopped. Go figure. This was all following suit of my labor with Theo so I was somewhat prepared for a million hours of labor this time around. I went throughout my day with random contractions all day long and my mom arrived that night. I was so thrilled and grateful that she had made it on time! We hugged, we talked, we chatted, live, laugh, love, and then we went to bed.

Once again, around 1 a.m. I was woken up. They were stronger than the last two nights and lasted about 5-6 hours. Eventually they stopped, because that's what they do if you're me and I fell back asleep. My body doesn't know how to have babies very efficiently. It just really likes to see what I'm made of.

My mom and I decided to go grocery shopping to get my body moving and also because I was in need of some serious distraction at this point. Once we were there, however, the contractions really got going (Hey, thanks Walmart!), so much so that I had to periodically lean over the cart to breathe through them. I'm sure it all looked very dramatic. As I was checking out, I was having a particularly intense one and the sales clerk kept trying to talk to me. I tried to look normal and carry on the conversation but mostly I think I just looked weird and constipated.

We went home, unloaded groceries, watched a terrible ABC Family Christmas movie, turned it off because it was actually kind of painful to watch (you know, the ones where you get secondhand embarrassment for actors), and decided it was time to get the tub ready. Taylor went upstairs to start inflating and filling the tub but about a quarter of the way through, we ran out of hot water. Without skipping a beat though, Taylor promptly went downstairs, turned on every burner and began boiling water. It was some serious pioneer style up in here. Those pioneers ain't got nothin' on us. Just kidding. They do.

He must have boiled nearly 40 pots of water, running up the stairs to dump the hot water and running back down to boil more. He didn't complain once and just kept going until the water was the perfect temperature. And then my heart grew five sizes because that is LOVE.

At that point I was pretty far into the labor and it was getting tougher so I decided to get in the water and the second I did it was like pure magic. It felt as though the pain had subsided and I actually began to get a little worried that I wasn't quite as progressed as I thought I was...until I got out of the tub to run to the bathroom and then I was like, nope, I'm as far as I think I am. That thing called gravity does nothing for you when you're about to have a baby.

During each contraction my mom would push on my back and coach me through them while Taylor was right near my face telling me how great I was doing, rubbing my arms, and making me feel more loved than ever. There was a moment during the labor when I just stopped and looked around the room and was overcome by the love that I felt. It was such a surreal moment and one that I hope I never forget. I had some of my sisters on FaceTime silently rooting me, my mom on one side of me, Taylor on the other, my midwife and her assistant there for anything I needed; I truly don't know if there has ever been a moment in my life when I have felt so loved and cared for. It somehow all felt very heavenly and unearthly in that room and in that moment.

As I neared the end, and during one intense contraction, I was sure I couldn't do it any longer. "I can't do this, I can't do this." I said over and over into Taylor's shoulder. My energy was fading and it was getting harder and harder to continue. In an attempt to bring my energy back up I was given a giant spoonful of honey to revive the little bit of strength that I had left in me and it was only shortly after the self-doubt and dose of honey that I felt like I might be ready to push. My midwife checked me and lo! I was at a 10! I was so excited that I practically jumped back into the tub and started to laugh-cry at the realization that I was only minutes away from meeting our little girl.

I started pushing and three contractions later, she was out. And then that long awaited moment came when they laid her on my chest. And I would venture to say that there is no moment more perfect or magical than when you get to meet your baby for the very first time. When they are placed on your chest and you get to look at the face of that little human who is yours forever.

This little girl who spent the last nine months growing inside of me and who I came to know through her kicks and movements was finally and really here and mine. As she took her first breath on her own, no longer dependent on my body to breathe, so curiously and peacefully looking around at this new world, my heart overflowed with the love I instantly felt for her and I knew our lives would never be the same. She was beautiful and perfect and ours. 

This little girl has no idea how much she is loved.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Theo's Story

So, I had my baby. Four days ago to be exact. And the experience was one I will never forget for as long as I shall live. But the details. The details are something that may or may not fade with time. And that, well that is just something that cannot be risked, so it is here that I will write down the details of the night my baby was born, and the night I was changed forever.

I was three days overdue and had been experiencing contractions for the past three nights. Each night I was so hopeful that "that this was it" and each morning I would wake up to no contractions, no baby, and feeling positive that I would be pregnant for the rest of  time and all eternity. As it turns out, you get pretty dramatic when you go past your due date.

But then, oh but then, on Wednesday afternoon I started to feel contractions come on more consistently and with a bit more intensity. My mom was in town for the birth and Taylor had come home early from work with hopes that this was the real deal. We sat and watched reruns of Gilmore Girls and with each contraction, we would pause our show while either my mom or Taylor would push on my back, the other tickling my arm, and I would breathe through each one. We would then resume our Gilmore Girl watching, wait for the next contraction to come on, and repeat. It was all going rather perfect. The contractions weren't too bad and I was feeling strong and able with each one.

They began getting closer and closer and once they were a steady three minutes apart, we were off to the hospital.

We arrived, they checked me and announced that I was at a solid 4. Months ago, nine to be exact, I had decided that I wanted to do a natural birth so I knew we had a long night ahead of us but with my husband and my mom by my side, I was sure I could do this. 

In an attempt to get things moving, I sat in jacuzzi's, paced the halls, leaned against chairs, squatted against hand rails, and sat on birthing balls. As I encountered and got through each advancing contraction, each one getting more and more intense, I tried to remind myself that I was being brought closer and closer to my baby, that in just a matter of hours I was going to become a mom and that all of this was going to pay off with the biggest reward I would ever receive. As each one ended my mom would remind me that that contraction was over and I would never have to do it again. "Shake it off, breathe it out, and enjoy this moment when you feel no pain," she would say. Every woman should have my mom around when they're about to give birth, is what I always say....well, as of four days ago, anyway.

After about 13 hours of laboring, I was exhausted. It was getting harder and harder (understatement) and I was praying that the next time they checked me, I would be at the highly acclaimed 10 cm. The nurse checked me and proudly announced that I was nearly there. She was going to call the doctor and I should be ready to start pushing in the next 30 minutes. Thirty minutes! I thought. I could do that! This had been tough, really tough, but 30 more minutes I could do. The doctor arrived, checked me once more and I couldn't wait to hear the words come out of her mouth that I was ready to push. But then those words didn't come out of her mouth. No, she didn't say any of that. Instead, she said that I still had a rim around my cervix. She said that I was at a 9+, not quite a 10, and that when I pushed, instead of expanding my cervix, it shrunk down to an 8 and if I were to push at that point, I would tear everything. She wasn't sure why it was happening but only that it was. And so I had to wait. She told me to keep laboring and she would be back to check on me momentarily. Keep laboring?? Easy for her to say!

In that moment, I lost all hope. I had no idea how I was going to keep going. I had never experienced pain like this and I had never known self-doubt to this extent. I wasn't prepared for this. It went on like this for an hour longer, and then another. Contractions every few minutes, stuck at a 9+, no signs of progression and all my body wanted to do was push that baby out! In between one particularly tough contraction, with tears streaming down my cheeks, I cried out to my mom, "Mom, I can't do this! I'm not strong enough!" And then she said firmly and with enough love to move a mountain (or several), "Rachel, Yes. You .Can. You are stronger than you know. You are doing absolutely amazing and you CAN do this. You have your entire family praying for you, rooting for you, waiting for you to bring this spirit into this world. You are receiving help from the other side and in this room are angels helping, assisting, and comforting you, waiting to welcome your child into this world. You were sent here to do this and you CAN do this, I know you can and so does everyone else cheering you on." (Like I said, every woman needs my mom by their side during labor.) So through encouraged tears and renewed hope, I breathlessly responded, "OK, OK, OK, OK, OK, OK, I can do this, I can do this." (I found that when under an immense amount of pressure, I like to repeat things. It makes me feel more able, I think.)

As it got tougher and tougher, my mom continued to coach me, instructing me on how to breathe through each contraction. Taylor never left my side, all the while listening to my mom. Then he would lean into my ear and say, "Breathe with me," mimicking my mom's breathing so that I could concentrate on him, shutting out the rest of the noise around me. Through each contraction he would whisper words of encouragement, telling me how strong I was, that I could absolutely do this, and that I was amazing. "Keep talking, keep talking," I would say to him. He gave me a blessing when I felt as though I was at my end and didn't know how to push forward. He was everything I needed. 

After three hours of being stuck at a 9+ and 16 hours of labor, the doctor came in, checked me for maybe the millionth time and finally announced that I had reached a 10 and was ready to push. "I've never been more grateful to hear anything in my life!" I yelled out.

And so I pushed. "I see his head!" the doctor would say. "He's crowning!" She said a bit later. And then the words, "His head is out!" came out of her mouth. And in a matter of minutes, they pulled him out and he was laying on my chest, screaming and more perfect than any single person I had ever before laid my eyes upon. "My baby, my baby, my baby," I cried over and over again. I looked over at Taylor in that moment and saw the tears in his eyes as it all settled in that we were parents, a mom and a dad just like that, and in an instant our lives were changed forever.

I fought hard for this baby. We fought hard. I couldn't have done it without Theo and he couldn't have done it without me. We needed each other and together we birthed a child and a set of parents all in a single moment. I'd say that it was our first real bonding experience that at least one of us will never forget. (Where's the love, Theo?) And good grief, was he worth it.

This experience has changed me forever in a way that words could never do justice. I've learned about sacrifice in a way I never understood, I've learned about love in a way I could never before comprehend, and if there's one thing I learned about myself, it's that, well, I'm mostly sure I can do literally anything.

So bring it on parenthood, I got this.

Theo James Godard - Born 9/11/14 - 7 lbs. 13 oz. - 21 in. long

Saturday, May 10, 2014

On Creating A Human

I remember that afternoon as if it were yesterday. Taylor and I had just returned home from our Christmas vacation down in Arizona. And while I was there, a couple of my sisters had this weird sort of sixth sense and were both convinced that I was pregnant. At one point I told them that I was cramping but it was weird because I wasn't supposed to "start" for another week. At that moment, with both sisters on either side of me, each grabbed one of my arms and at the same time said, "You're pregnant!" I remember rolling my eyes, laughing, and saying, "Guys, I've not been pregnant a lot in my life, and I'm pretty sure now is still one of those times." Regardless, the next day my sister went out and bought me two tests. So, I took them, both within several days of each other just to be sure, and alas, they both came out negative. And I mean really, I was okay with it. Because we weren't really trying, but we weren't really not trying. You know?....But isn't there a small part of you that always kind of hopes that it just might be positive?

But then it was the day after we got home. Taylor was at work, I was home cleaning, and I should have "started" that day. But my body just wasn't giving me its usual signs. I wasn't feeling supra emotional and I had had no recent cramping, and so, even though I had taken one just two days before, I figured, never hurts!

And so I did. I took it, left it on the bathroom counter, and continued unpacking and cleaning our bedroom. A few minutes later, I walked in the bathroom to throw something away, realizing I had  completely forgotten about it, I glanced at it with the usual expectation that there would only be one line. I picked it up to throw it away as I usually do, and that's when I noticed that second, tiny, faint, life-changing, blue line. And well, I almost died. And I'm also not sure that there are human enough words to describe how I felt in that moment.

My brain stopped working. I couldn't stop laughing, and then hyperventilating (but the good kind of hyperventilation) followed by some crying. This combination of things went on for quite some time while I just kept talking to myself, pacing the entire upstairs about 1,000 times. "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh, (giggle, giggle, giggle, tears escaping my eyes and falling onto my cheeks) I'm going to be a mom!" (grabbing my face to make sure this was real) "Holy crap, I have a baby inside of me." (more crying) "We're going to be parents." (uneven breathing) "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh!!!!!!!!!!" (more crying, more laughing, more weird breathing)

Taylor wasn't home for another three hours and I thought I was going to die waiting for him to get off work. During that time, I had to run down to his office to pick something up and while I was there, I casually, and with just the right amount of boringness to my voice, told him that while I was cleaning the house I found a present that I forgot to give him for Christmas. And then I had to hurry and get the heck out of there before I blurted out something about positive pregnancy tests. For the last hour before he got home, I sat on the edge of the bed, stared at the wall, and re-tidied everything at least 35 times, After what seemed like a million years, I heard the car pull up outside, the front door open and his voice yell up to me, "I'm ready for my present!" I laughed and told him he had to come upstairs to get it. So up he came and sat on the bed bouncing and smiling impatiently. I grabbed the gift bag that contained the test with a piece of paper taped around it that announced, "You're going to be a daddy!" and set the present in front of him. He pulled out the tissue paper, looked down, looked up at me with a look of disbelief, pulled it out, looked back up at me,  this time with teary eyes and more looks of the disbelieving sort and said, "Shut up, shut up. This is real? Is this for real?!" I nodded my head until I thought it might fall off, and with an ugly cry/laughing face responded, "It's real, we're going to have a baby!" And then we hugged and cried and laughed for a solid 10 minutes taking in that moment that was just ours, just the two of us, creating a memory that I will never forget for as long as I shall live.

Our lives changed forever that day. It's been followed by months of sickness, laying in bed a lot, losing my personality for what I thought might just be forever, losing weight, and lots of trips for Taylor to the grocery store to pick up that one and only thing that sounded good to me, only to throw it up later. (On a related but gross note: One time, I ate a bowl of Life cereal for breakfast, and about 10 minutes later threw it all up. During that little episode, Taylor stood behind me holding my hair back, being so sweet and supportive during such a gross moment. And let me tell you, Life cereal just does not look quite the same coming back up as it does going down, so once I was finished he asked, "What was that?" I looked up at him with what I imagine was a sort of dead-like look to my face and responded, "It was Life." And then we laughed really hard.) Taylor would lay in bed with me and hold me while I cried to him that this was stupid and hard, and that I wanted to fall in true love with this baby so badly, but that he/she was making it really hard by making me barf every 5 seconds. 

But then all of a sudden, it changed. I regained a personality, hamburgers sounded good again, our house didn't smell weird anymore, Taylor didn't smell weird anymore, I started packing on the pounds like a mad woman, and then there was that one day when I felt that babe move inside of me, and well, that was a game changer. It was like instantaneous love. All that sickness and those death-like feelings were forgotten. My body was no longer mine and for the first time, I really realized it. I was living and breathing, eating and moving, not just for me, but for him. And so far, this pregnancy thing? Well, I'm pretty in love with it. I weirdly love getting bigger and bigger each day and watching how different I look from week to week. I love that there's a human inside of me that is so dependent on me for every ounce of his growth and his health. It has made me change the way I live, the way I think, even the way I eat. And you guys, I eat vegetables now! And I'm talking like lettuce, sugar snap peas, V8 juice, and grape tomatoes...just for fun! I hardly even recognize myself anymore. And I'd like to say that it was all my decision, but really, this pregnant body of mine has decided that it doesn't respond well to my steady diet of french fries, hamburgers, (hold the veggies please) and all the candy in the dollar store. And I guess go figure. So, for the first time I'm eating healthier than I have in my entire life and every time someone asks how I'm feeling, my response is always, "Better than ever!" The other day was the first time I thought to myself, "Waaaaaaaait a second, maybe there's something to this whole eatingfoodthatcomesfromtheground thing." Durr. And don't get me wrong, I still eat the crap, just with slightly more moderation. And I'm not sure why I'm rambling on about this. Probably just because I'm pretty proud of myself. Because if you know me, this is some serious progress in my life.

But anyway, babies. We're having one! Well, I'm having one, but you get it. And I could just leap for joy every time I think about it...which is roughly about 99.9% of the time.

Cutest boy I've ever seen in my whole life. All biases aside, obviously.

This was 3 weeks ago. I'll get a recent photo up pronto. The anticipation is killing you, I'm sure.

23 weeks down, 17 to go. Hot dog!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Mother Knows Best

So it's like this. My mom and I have mostly, always had this sort of kinship going on. You know, the kind where hearts and love and things in common are involved. During my high school years, I was maybe not the kindest, most loving daughter that ever existed (if you can possibly imagine?!).  It wasn't until sometime in my twenties that the teenage angst began to melt away and I suddenly became more like a human and less like....whatever else I was. It wasn't until those years that a real and true mother/daughter relationship could really develop between the two of us. And when it happened, suddenly she became the person that I wanted to go to when things were both good and stupid; a new job, a new guy, small feats and big ones, break-ups and being broke, (she was the sole reason I didn't starve to death on more than one occasion) you get the idea.

My parents divorced my senior year of high school, so in the years following, my mom and I got to enjoy a rare relationship of exchanging thoughts and hopeful dreams of our future husbands. What would they be like? Would we ever, ever, ever find them? Because for a while there, it all looked really rather dim. We would call each other in moments of discouragement, moments of hope or excitement. We would exchange dating stories (which to this day, are still my very favorite things to hear about! Good or bad. Seriously, call me. But only if you're going to tell me every single detail, otherwise I get bored and therefore cannot offer the "wise" advice your situation solicits.) and over analyze every aspect of the night, just as any normal girl might do. She would tell me I'm too picky, I would fire it right back, we'd shrug our shoulders and then move on to other topics, like what we had for dinner that night.  

And then one Sunday afternoon I got a text from her: "There's a single guy in my ward. I think you two should meet." "Oh uhhhh yeah, no thanks Mom." Because I mean, I sure love that mom of mine, but I'm pretty sure I don't want to be set up by my mom. I mean, right? Her response was, "Too late, I already told him about you. He's going to find you on Facebook."

She would.

He found me, friended me, messaged me, (hopefully facebook is still around for our grandkids, otherwise this story might make a little less sense.) we wrote a little bit back and forth, it was all pretty blah, blah. I lived in Idaho at the time, he in South Dakota, it was just never going to happen, and plus, why did a single, older guy live in South Dakota of all places? He really can't be that normal. My mom would ask about him every time we talked, and would always get furious when I would tell her I was dating or was interested in someone else. "What about Taylor?!" she would say. To which I would respond, "Uhhh what about him? I haven't even met the guy!" I was always confused by her passion about him. To this day, she'll claim it was absolute inspiration.

And then one fateful day, I decided that I would go visit my mom over the summer. So I went, and on Sunday morning, before we left for church my mom must have said at least 57 times, "How does it feel to know that you're going to meet your husband today?" To which, I would roll my eyes each time and say, "Okaaay Mom." But with a really ugly face and in that super annoying voice that every kid in the world, no matter how old they are, uses when their parent says something that they think is dumb. (No offense Mom.)

And well, it's all history from there, because...she was right (as she always is, I'm sure.). We met after Sacrament meeting (so romantic, right?) he asked me out for the next day and at the end of our first date while standing on the steps of my mom's front porch, he asked, "Sooo ummm I kind of want to see you every day until you that okay? To which my heart melted and I coolly responded, "Yeah....that's okay." And so for the next two weeks, we did just that. During those two weeks, I got to go home each night where my mom would be waiting up for me, just as she might if I was still 16-years-old, (except that I was 25 and nicer) and I would tell her every single detail of the night. She was the first to know that I thought he was a little arrogant, the first to know about the first time he kissed me, she was the one who talked me through my doubts (because in all of my dating years, I was always pretty bipolar), and she was the one who got about 17 times more excited than I was when I finally admitted aloud that I might actually really like him.

After those 2 weeks, we dated long distance. Three months later we were engaged and 6 months from the day we met, we were married. To which, this victory is something my mother will never, ever let me forget. And well, who can blame her? 

But wait, there's more! It was only a few months after getting married that Taylor and I went back to South Dakota for a visit. And in no time, my mom was telling me about this guy who had really been pursuing her lately. And the role reversal ensues! I became the worst/best version of her. "Tell me everything!" "Have him over for dinner tonight!" "I NEED to meet him before I leave." I even wrote out a whole text for her to send to him inviting him over that first night. She was so dang nervous and it was probably the cutest thing I ever saw.

Over the next few months she would call, tell me how excited she was, tell me how nervous she was, and I would talk her through it while also getting retardedly excited. I told her everything she ever told me and held her hand, just as she had for me only months before. 

And would you know that just last weekend, that mom of mine got married! And good frank, I cried harder during their ceremony than I did at my own! I even get a little teary just thinking of it now.

That mom of mine, well she's mine forever and ever and no one deserves to be happy more than she does.

So here's to weddings, marriage, and doing it all in the same year....together!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I Have This Theory(s)....

The four words posted above have been running through my brain all day long on repeat like the mixed tape your boyfriend made you in 7th grade (don't worry mom, all we did was hold hands on the way to class and awkwardly hug each other after school before our busses came to pick us up, and then after two weeks I broke up with him via a folded note that my friend gave to him for me explaining that we were just "too different.") wherein you played it over and over again until it was past repair and even sticking your pinky finger inside the little windy poky thing to wind it back up into the tape stopped working.

And now for some theories.

Theory #1: It is my belief that you can win any child over with candy, no matter how old or young. It's how I have and will continue to try and become the favorite aunt of all my nieces and nephews, and let me tell you, so far I think I'm in the running, and maybe even winning! (Sorry sibs. Can't win 'em all) And also, I teach a class of 5 and 6-year-olds on Sundays and I NEVER forget to bring treats for them. Mostly because I remember the incentive it served for me to go to class when I was little (and who am I kidding, to this day, I'll whip out laffy taffy's during sacrament. Which is right about when Taylor leans over all dad like and whisper yells, "this isn't a movie theater!" wherein I roll my eyes and eat it anyway) but also because it serves as some seriously good bribery, and when you make them cry (which I did last week when I told a kid to "zip it") you can tell them you're terribly sorry and that you'll give him candy if he's good for the rest of class, because when the boy has to take off his glasses to wipe his tears away, there's not much a person won't do to console him. And this tactic, it works! When I walked into church this last Sunday I was greeted by one of my kids with a fake, tattered flower (talk about melting a fake teacher's heart) which I will probably keep forever, and then later one of my little girl's whispered into my ear asking if I had brought treats. To which I whispered that of course I had and then she whispered back to me, "You just might be the best teacher I've ever had." And then I died a little inside. But in the good way, you know. Thus, candy. I swear by it, now, forever, and 103 cavities later. (I think I've had at least 27 in my life. Yikes. That's really some pretty embarrassing information. Sorry Mom and Dad. I always had the best of intentions.)

Theory #2: Husbands. They are good in opposite versions of you. I always thought I wanted to marry someone like muah, because apparently I think pretty highly of myself or something, but then I dated guys like me and realized that I wanted to punch them in the face, or at least the shins, most of the time. It wasn't until I met this Taylor husband that I realized I needed someone who would make me talk when I didn't want to, who would be rational when I was on the irr side of that thinking, and who has proven to be a "professional optimist" (in a conversation with his mom the other day, she used that term regarding him and in my head I was all, "Yes! That's it!") on all counts. And I'm not kidding you. In the 6 and 1/2 months that we've been married I have never heard him say, not even once, that he's had a bad day. I on the other hand, venture somewhere near the....more than zero bad days...we'll just say. And also, he has really terrible dad jokes, (no offense to dad's...but sort of offense. I mean, they're usually pretty bad. No?) which really just makes my material that much better. And together we really make our own pretty good team.

Theory #3: I seriously believe in having shaved ice in every town, no matter how big or small. (we don't and I'm mad about it basically every single day.) I mean, why must shaved ice facilities be such a respecter of towns?? Ice cream is just about the barfiest and about as refreshing as cauliflower, and is small particles of ice topped with tiger's blood and a dash of cream on top too much to ask for? I should think not.

Theory #4: Lastly, I believe in never leaving the house without chapstick. I can't and I just won't.

And that's all the inspiring material I have for now.

Until next time!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Because Goldish

The other night I was laying in bed watching Pretty Little Liars. And if there's something you should know about me it is that I am 26-years-old and I am terrified, and I do mean terrified, of the dark; the unknown that looms there, and all the horrifying things that you never think twice about when the sun is shining and lights are on, but in the dark, well it's anyone's game...including all the robbers and burglars that are probably just waiting for you to take that step up around the corner, or grab your ankles while going up the stairs (this one is by far my GREATEST fear of all. I usually run up the stair skipping two steps at a time.) And I'm honestly not quite sure where this fear came from. I mean I loathe scary movies and refuse to watch them at all costs, so it must just be my own dumb brain and imagination that makes it all up but the thing is I can't help it. So I guess embrace it? I mean, what other options do I have, overcome it? Because after this many years, I am preeeetty sure that will never happen.

Anyway, Pretty Little Liars (if you've ever seen it) doesn't do much good for this unreasonable aversion to the dark and while in the middle of it earlier this week, I suddenly got this insatiable craving for goldfish. It's a phase I'm going through I'm sure, but I swear to you I could eat an entire million ounce box of those things and not think twice. So I promptly got up from my bed, walked into the well-lit computer room where Taylor was and asked him if he could go downstairs and get my goldfish for me. He looked up at me, smiled, and asked, "Have you been watching Pretty Little Liars?" I mumbled a "maybe" and then he asked if I was worried about all the robbers downstairs to which I responded, "DUH!"

He laughed and promptly went downstairs to retrieve the fish crackers along with a glass of water with 4 ice cubes, because everyone knows that 4 is the perfect amount to keep your water cold long enough for you to drink all of it and then be left with ice cubes just small enough for you to chew. I mean, doesn't everyone know that? So with the goldfish and water in hand my knight in shining basketball shorts returned and I sat in bed and nervously ate the entire bag of fish while finishing my show, to which afterwards I felt this major overload of sodium intake settle in my blood, my skin, and even my bones I think. Then that reminded me of the time when my little brother was a baby and us older siblings thought it would be a good idea to fill up his bottle with pickle juice wherein he drank the entire thing and the next morning woke up with a swollen face and eyes shaped like the kind you might find in China. My mom sort of freaked out when she saw him and asked us what happened. "Well, we gave him a bottle of pickle juice last night, so that might be why he looks like that...." She asked us why we thought that that was a good idea and we told her that "he really liked it!" And wasn't that a good enough reason? We thought so anyway. And after at least 24 hours the swelling went down, so no harm, no foul, right? Right.

And so with enough salt in my system to last me the rest of the month, enough fear instilled to keep me from getting off the bed, and making sure that Taylor was by my side, I rolled over to go to sleep, and hoped I wouldn't wake up looking like my little brother did.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Things That Are Worth It

This weekend Taylor and I got to go to Utah. And I lived in Salt Lake City once upon a time, for a short time really, but because of that it was all quite nostalgic; what with its mountains on end, canyons for days, and so many In-N-Out's it hurts, it all just felt so very, very right. It was just the kind of weekend the doctor would order if I actually had one.

And what is it about being in a city that just makes you feel "home." I can't explain it really and I don't think I ever would have appreciated it (nor would I have ever considered Utah a "city") had I never lived in a town with approximately 5 restaurants and 3 clothing stores...including Walmart. But I mean, now it's like I couldn't stop staring at all the places I could choose to eat, the endless amount of stores that want my money, and well, I have never been more willing to succumb and buy everything I came into contact with, because that's what living in a small town will do to you, I guess.

But so it was there that we attended a wedding and all that it entails. And what is it about those things that always make me cry? I mean, I didn't even know the couple, (it was a friend of Taylor's) but alas, just when you think you're going to get through it with a certain level of collectedness and dignity, all of sudden you don't, and you're wiping the tears from your eyes before they can fall to your cheeks. And it's also in that moment that you realize your husband is sniffing next to you and you lean your face straight into his just to be sure and notice that his eyes are red, and your heart just melts because the only other time you've seen him cry was at your own wedding. And geesh, I will love weddings until the day I die.

In addition to the wedding, we also went scooter riding, (duh) graced In-N-Out with our presence, (twice. because well, I have been counting down the days since June) went to the movies, drove an hour for the best wings around, met up with one of my best friend's for a much needed shopping/catching up/Sonic drinking rendezvous, and as I left Utah my heart was full realizing, for maybe the millionth time in my life, that I am one lucky, lucky girl.

Taylor always has two scooters in his trunk. Because you just never know. 
Guys, this is a serious butt exercise!

If I were a meal, this would be it. I'll leave it up to you to decide what that means. 

Pure joy. 
Taylor and the Groom.
We were really "workin' it"

So long Utah. Thanks for good weather, nice individuals, and all the restaurants I could ever dream of, but mostly, thanks for In-N-Out.