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BYU Women's Conference

29 April 2012
I won two tickets to go to BYU Women's Conference through Mormon Mommy Blogs. Dear MMB, I love you forever. Thank you for giving me these chances to go to places I would otherwise not be able to go. My beautiful and patient sister-in-law volunteered to watch Sparrow, I grabbed my friend Angel and packed myself up some sandwiches and off I went.

Anecdote: On Thursday, I took Sparrow for a special breakfast at McDonald's. By the time we made it to my sister-in-law's house in Provo, I felt like I was going to die. I had to throw up in her bathroom. I realized that the last time I felt so sick and threw up was also when I had McDonald's for breakfast. This is the first "food" that I have not been able to digest properly since I had my gallbladder out in October.

After that little detour, I felt much better. Off to the Marriott Center! I had missed the first session, but was armed and ready for battle. I attended a class called "Mormon's Warning: Arming our Homes and Families." I took about 5 pages of notes. This class will probably be broadcast later, so I recommend watching for it.

I found this cute little poster at the BYU Bookstore. It has the "temples to dot the earth" prophecy on the bottom with temple icons in all the cities where temples are.

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My favorite part is that the places where temples are under construction are little pictures of missionaries digging a hole. I can't wait to hang it up in Sparrow's new bedroom.

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The third session was "And in Her Tongue is the Law of Kindness." It was fantasticalmazing. I can't even describe to you how great that class was. I got to meet up with my friend Amy and she shared a note with me that has changed my life and outlook on raising Sparrow. The presenter, Heidi Jensen, spoke about her crazy 4 year old and it sounded almost exactly like Sparrow. I didn't know that other children were like Sparrow, I thought he was the only nutball. Sister Jensen mentioned that she hadn't wanted to tell some of her story, but the Spirit prompted her to do so. I know that the Spirit led her to tell her experiences just for me. It was wonderful.

I had the opportunity to volunteer on Thursday evening at the concert. I handed out battery-powered candles to the concert attendees. I have never had so much fun. Actually I take it back - I have had this much fun exactly twice before, the last two times I volunteered at Women's Conference. I love serving all the beautiful women and meeting them is so great. I hope that I get to volunteer at Women's Conference every year until I die, and then when I die I hope I die at Women's Conference so I will be happy when I go.

On Friday I missed the first session again because I am talented like that. I attended a class on meaningful prayer, which was very helpful at this point in my life. Prayer is not something I have an easy time with and it is very much something I want to teach Sparrow. I hope he can make prayer a priority in his life, but I know that he only will if I do. So I got some great ideas to help me with that. I also attended a class on anger and dealing with it. Personally I have a lot of little frustrations that ball up and I relieve myself in unhealthy ways (mainly by binge-eating and mindless shopping.) So I have to work on that as well.

The last class I attended on Friday was a class on homemaking, learning and passing on homemaking skills. Homemaking and housekeeping are not the same thing. Housekeeping is the care and keeping clean of a home while homemaking is the spiritual care of the people inside the home. This class was pretty small but the presenters were hysterically funny and it was a fun, fun class. I'm glad I decided to attend that one.

Also, a kind of cool thing, Rosemary Wixom, the General Primary President of the Church, was in attendance at the homemaking class. After the class was over I went up to her and asked if I could get a picture with her and she was so kind and obliged. I bragged to her about Sparrow and his Article of Faith awesomeness and she was really nice and listened to me ramble like a crazy person. It was really neat to meet her - you could feel the Spirit just oozing off her person (and I mean that in the nicest possible way). I am so glad I don't have her job. I can barely handle my one kid, let alone be responsible (kind of) for the spiritual well-being of every child in the church. Yikes.

P1090347 Rosemary Wixom and me, her new BFF.

I am so grateful I got to attend Women's Conference 2012. I had a wonderful time and as always, I learned so much. There is a special feeling at Women's Conference and it is so much fun to learn and serve with the wonderful women there. Thanks again to MMB for sending me! See you on May 1-2 of 2013, Women's Conference!

The horses are ignoring the "Don't Feed the Horses" sign.

25 April 2012
Sparrow and I went to a farm yesterday. We learned that horses will beat each other up in their zeal to get an apple.

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They are not, however, interested in your Diet Coke.

Also, geese don't care that your mommy bought you a special turkey sandwich because you asked sweetly for turkey despite never having eaten it before. They will chase you down and steal your overpriced sandwich and bite you on the fingers. I think we're having goose for Thanksgiving this year.

33 Random Things About Me

20 April 2012
I was really bored the other night while we were watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer so I decided to write 33 random things about myself. Enjoy.

  1. Most of my days either start or end with a small existential crisis. Sometimes, just to change things up, I have an extra one in the afternoon. For funsies.
  2. I never in a million, billion, trillion years thought I would ever get married. I begged my roommate to date Nate (yes, the rhyme was often repeated around our house) and even after he started dating me I asked him several times if he would rather date her.
  3. I had 13 hours of induced labor, a C-section with no painkillers afterward for several hours; I’ve broken my arm and hiked 8 miles with a broken toe. But the worst pain I have ever been in is when my eardrum burst during my pregnancy. I live in absolute terror of ever getting an ear infection again.
  4. I do not get celebrity crushes. If I get a crush, it’s on the character, never the actor...
  5. ...And I get totally weird crushes, where I wish I was the daughter of X character. Right now my “parent crush” is Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. But any “parent crush” I get will always be eclipsed by my great desire to have Qui-Gon Jinn from Star Wars adopt me.
  6. I have written 3 novels, which all suck…
  7. …and a children’s book which does not suck, but will likely never be published. And I’m too lazy to self-publish it other than selling random copies I have lying around.
  8. I am consistently amazed that I have managed to keep a small human being alive and relatively healthy for four. years.
  9. Because prior to Toby’s birth, I had maybe two hours’ worth experience with infants/toddlers.
  10. I can raise both my eyebrows, raise/arch one or the other, and basically make all manner of wiggly-eyed expressions with mine brows.
  11. I met my oldest bestest friend in a Star Wars chatroom when we were 12. We didn’t physically meet till we were 16. Our relationship is so awesome it’s almost ridiculous.
  12. I attended four different high schools in two different states.
  13. My family moved 10 times before I turned 16, including two moves across the country.
  14. Because we moved around so much when I was a kid, I feel compelled to move around a lot as an adult. Luckily Nate is around to remind me what a pain moving is.
  15. My single biggest regret is dropping out of college after I got my Associate’s Degree. I was a scared, burned out 17 year old with Serious Issues, but I so wish I had stayed in school.
  16. I’m kind of a huge dork, and on the one hand I can own my dorkiness. But on the other hand, I overanalyze dumb things I do for years after the fact.
  17. I struggle severely with social anxiety and depression and am thankful every day that I have access to medication which allows me to live a normal life.
  18. But on the other hand, that medication which has cured me, has also caused my writing to stop. I miss being a writer, but I’d choose living over writing any day (though someday I want to learn how to do both at the same time.)
  19. My favorite TV shows when I was a teenager were: MASH and The Golden Girls. I was a total dork and had no idea about current trends/popular stuff.
  20. I LOVE that my mom and grandma are so young (we are 19 and 40 years apart, respectively.) Part of the reason I had Toby at a young age was because I didn’t want to break that 20-ish year chain.
  21. I would love to move out of the country, but I want Toby to be as close to his Nana as I am to my grandma, so we are staying put for now. This is also 80% of the reason we moved back to Utah.
  22. I am ridiculously attached to my cats. I may mock them until I turn blue, but I can’t imagine life without them. Which is a little lame, I admit, but these two were my only friends for 7 months while I was home-bound in Arkansas. We’re tight.
  23. I have learned to play 3 of the 4 instruments I’ve always wanted to learn. I’m just barely starting on violin, and someday I’d like to learn flute.
  24. I feel OLD. I think Toby stole my brain cells because I swear I used to feel smarter than this.
  25. I have always wanted to learn German, but I think at this point I’ll settle for getting anywhere near fluent in Spanish.
  26. I can’t imitate a British accent ever since I lived in London. I just get totally embarrassed.
  27. I hate how I look with long hair and even though I’m sometimes tempted to grow it out, I’ll probably never be patient enough to do so.
  28. I struggle with an eating disorder which I was stupid enough to start on my own, thinking I could beat it or that it wouldn't affect me. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
  29. I didn’t meet my dad until I was 19. And yet we are so much alike (in personality, sense of humor, etc.) it is eerie.
  30. I am a little jealous and intimidated of my siblings because they are turning out to be such cool, intelligent, spiritually awesome, fascinating human beings. I kind of wish I had been half the awesome they are when I was their ages. Plurals are starting to confuse me here.
  31. One of the proudest small moments of my life is when I was 16 and I made my mom laugh till she cried. My mom is HILARIOUS and is one tough nut to crack. Even to this day, if I can make her laugh, I feel awesome.
  32. Nate is the best thing that ever happened to me. If I hadn’t met him, I probably wouldn’t be here today. Small existential crises aside, I love my life and I love my family. Even though we’re all ridiculously stressed at the moment. Together, there’s nothing we can’t face.
  33. Except for bunnies.

The last one is a blatant reference to Buffy :)

BYU Women's Conference giveaway

19 April 2012
For the last 3 years I have had the opportunity to volunteer at BYU's Women's Conference. I LOVE volunteering there. It's so fulfilling and I got to meet some amazing people. Unfortunately, this year I didn't know anyone who could put my name on the volunteer list, so I didn't get to sign up.

Women's Conference is a 2 day spiritual feast. There are different classes on all sorts of different topics: family, children, church service, health, genealogy, anything you can think of. It's an amazing experience and I am so grateful I've had the opportunity to attend in the past. I always come away feeling fantastic and rejuvenated with tons of new ideas and goals. It's just amazing.

This year Mormon Mommy Blogs is giving away two tickets for Women's Conference. I'd really like to win! The classes offered this year look phenomenal. The only thing that's a bummer is that you can't attend every single class that's offered. Oh if only I had a Time Turner like Hermione!

And let's face it: I have had a horrible couple of months. We're still losing our home and can't find any other place to live - every time we apply it's another $60 just to get turned down because our credit sucks or someone else gets the place before we do. My car is breaking down, my child has been putting me through insanity, and I'm just losing my mind. I could really use a chance to get some time to myself to focus on spiritual things. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

This post brought to you by Mormon Mommy Blogs and #byuwomensconf. Oh dear Canada I hope they pick me for the tickets!

My Review of Ice Blue Soap

18 April 2012

Originally submitted at LUSH USA

We add sea salt to the top of this bar as it's great for exfoliation and as an added bonus it makes the soap look like a freezing iceberg! When you bring it into your hot steamy shower, the peppermint oil will make your skin feel tingly cool, like it would if you were in the Antarctic. The fres...


If I could marry soap, this would be it.

By Krisling from Draper, UT on 4/18/2012

 

4out of 5

When you survey your stash, you label this product: Must-Have

Pros: Lathers Well, Pleasant Smell, Cleans Effectively

Cons: Doesn't Last Long

Best Uses: Showers

Describe Yourself: Budget Buyer

I adore this soap. I first smelled and subsequently bought it in Hawaii so it always reminds me of Oahu. It smells so clean and the scent just makes me think of the ocean. My husband likes the scent too and it's not overly manly/womanly for either of us. But with 2 people using it, it goes a lot faster, which is a bummer.

The scent lasts for hours. I can exercise, run errands, change clothes, cook and eat meals, and 14 hours later still smell the soap on my skin. It is fantastic.

My only complaint is that it doesn't last super-long, especially in hot water. The first 1-2 times I use it my skin feels a little dry, but then my body adjusts and it works out great. I am a life-long Ice Blue buyer!

(legalese)

Boys are people too.

11 April 2012
In which I complain about boy's clothing.

I know I'm in the minority here, but I really hate the offerings for boy clothing. On the one hand, if I had a girl I would be totally broke, because girls have SO MUCH to choose from and so many things are cute and sweet. Boys clothes though...

Why do boys have to be clothed like toughies?

Sparrow doesn't like sports. There go 25% of our clothing options right there. I don't like him to wear clothing with characters on it because I don't like my son to be a walking billboard. There goes another 10%.

Pirates are not allowed in my house. I do not understand the pirate love - why are we glorifying dirty, murderous law-breakers? My son is 4 years old. Why in the world would I want my 4 year old to wear skulls and crossbones? Or skulls, period? For this same reason, I don't allow skater clothing. Skater culture is not something I want my son to emulate (although I admit at one point in my life, I totally wanted to be a bad-a** skater girl.) I also don't like the current trend of dressing your kid like a little rock star. I am totally cool with music, but I am not okay with "I'M A ROCK STAR WORSHIP ME" that seems to be the trend right now.

Sparrow does not like dinosaurs. They scare him. He doesn't like sharks or bears. He doesn't like scary, mean looking animals. And neither do I.

I don't like clothing with words on it - stuff like "Mommy's Little Mucker" or "Daddy's Dude." It's okay, but I don't really like it (and it makes taking pictures hard, because i feel like the words distract from Sparrow's face.) I absolutely refuse to buy anything that says "Daddy/Mommy's Little Man." My son is not a little man, he's a little boy. I would never call my daughter "little woman," that's derogatory.

So out of the clothing that's out there, I like maybe 5-10% of it.

Sparrow is a sweet boy. He adores kittens and horses. Do you think it's possible to find any boy clothing with cats or ponies? Well, it is, but you have to special order them, and I can't really afford that.

I admit, I am extremely picky. And I will probably have to relax my standards as Sparrow grows. Right now we still have a few options available at places like Gymboree and Crazy8. Sometimes I can find cute things at Target, but most of the items there are character clothing. Or the trendy color of orange, which clashes horribly with Sparrow's hair. I realize that as he grows up, Sparrow's clothing options are going to be more "adult," and more "skater-y." And I also know that he will probably want to pick out his own clothing eventually and he might want characters on his clothes.

But I wish that boys had more options. I wish they had cuter options, rather than "tough" or "cool" options. And I really, really wish that people would get over the gross zombie craze. Because I understand zombies even less than I understand pirates. Why? Why?

This post brought to you by my lack of clothing options for my poor, nearly naked son. And a new children's picture book that came out about a zombie, which looks horrid and makes me question the purpose of human existence.

Because my Facebook friends are getting annoyed

06 April 2012
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is on Instant Netflix. I have been making Sparrow watch it with me. We love it. Sparrow now has two My Little Pony toys. I remember getting the My Little Pony Wedding Pony when my mom and dad got married. I loved those stinkin' toys. Oh, memories.

If you, or anyone you know, is looking for a job, 1-800-Contacts in Draper, Utah is an absolutely incredible place to work. They are hiring computer programmers like crazy right now and if you put Hawk's name as your referral we will split the $5000 referral bonus with you. If you are interested contact me at krisis86 at gmail dot com for more information. They are hiring for other positions too but the referral bonus is not as awesome.

I have been dying, DYING DYING to go on a rampage on the Internet to post about the owner of this house and what a complete and total jerk he is. Like how he won't let us out of our lease a month early because he's a money grubbing dirtbag who is using our rent for drugs and prostitutes. But I have been really good. We have also met some extremely shady rental agents, and I have some serious anti-recommendations for people.

I would like to know why we as a society cannot invent magical weight loss cookies. If we can invent Viagra, can't we make magic weight loss cookies? Why not?

One of the only reasons I am excited to move is because it means we get to get rid of crap. I love de-cluttering. I love having no stuff. Hawk does not. But he doesn't have to know mwahaha.

My brothers on their missions are doing extremely well. Tony has been gone for 10 months and has changed so much for the better I can't even believe it. Paraguay has done some amazing things for him and I am excited to re-connect with him when he returns because we weren't very close before.

Elder Trevino wearing a bird. Oh, Elder Trevino, you are looking so good.

Daniel, on the other hand... HE'S ONLY BEEN GONE FOR A MONTH. Guys, it's killing me. I can't believe it's only been a month. I miss him so freaking much. Of course, he's doing amazing but there was never any doubt of that. He has still not seen a kangaroo but he's working on it. Hawk and I want to pick him up from Australia in 2014 (HOLY CRAP SO FAR AWAY) but I don't know if I can handle that flight. I think it would end me.

025 Photo courtesy of Fotofly.

Sparrow is turning into a small man-child and it is scaring the pants off me.

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My poor, poor Grandma had her knee operated on last week and she is in a lot of pain. I wish I could help her out more but for now we are keeping our distance because Sparrow does not know the meaning of the word "gentle." She had her knees done so that we can go to Europe together next year and I don't have to listen to her whine about the stairs all over the place. I love that woman. She's going to murder me for posting this but here's a picture of her with her physical therapy graduation shirt after she had her other knee done back in January.

053 (2) I love you Grandma, please don't kill me.

Giveaway Winner

03 April 2012
In my highly professional blog, when we do giveaways, it goes like this. "Hawk, pick a number between 1 and 10. You pick 8? There is no 8. Try again. 6 it is!"

Which means that Mrs. Small House my secret twin sister (no seriously, our alikeness is a little creepy sometimes.) has won the giveaway! Yaaaay!

That was fun. Let's do it again soon. Thanks for sponsoring me, MMB!