Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Blog Neglect.

Lately, I've been tired. And I do mean tired. My night-owl habits have disappeared out of necessity to my health and well-being. If I stay up much past 9:30 anymore, I can hardly get out of bed the next morning. This is a big change given that my normal bedtime is usually around 11:00 p.m. (at the earliest!). Even with going to bed earlier, I'm still pretty tired when I wake up in the morning, and almost every day I need to take a solid afternoon nap to make it through the day. Needless to say, this is seriously interfering with the usual productivity and activities that I like to fill my time with. And one of the things that is suffering from my lack of energy and attention is my dear little blog.

There are many things I've been wanting to write about, but I just haven't been able to do it because of the time and energy it takes to put it all together. Blog-posting can be pretty time-consuming, even though I like doing it. I've been wanting to post pictures of my snowy trip to Boston last month, as well as our family photo shoot, and a number of other things, but I'm powerless to do so right now. This month I've been lucky to get one little measly blog post up each week.

So I just wanted to let you know that I'll be back when my energy level is back to its regular "peppy" level. In the meantime, I'll still be posting on my blog (hopefully, though the posts may be simple and short) and reading your awesome blogs, although it may not be as frequent until I get better. I hope you will forgive me and still be my friend. And I hope my blog will forgive me too!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Oh, honestly!

My friend Danielle gave me this Honest Scrap award, and along with it I'm supposed to list ten honest things about myself. This is pretty easy since anything factual is honest...

1. I was born on July 31, 1980 in Provo, Utah. I am 28 years old.

2. Even though I'm 28, people who first meet me often think I'm somewhere around 18 years old, a full decade younger than I actually am. It's kind of embarrassing. I don't dress or act that young; it's just the way I guess I look. Maybe someday I'll be grateful for it, but I've always wished I looked more my age.

3. While growing up, I lived in Utah (twice), North Carolina (twice), Georgia, New Jersey, and Massachusetts because of my father's military job. Massachusetts is where my family finally "settled" when I started eighth grade.

4. I went to an Ivy League university where a successful career, status and prestige, and earning a high income were often stressed, but I really never wanted anything more than to be a mother.

5. Having said that, I often daydream about being: 1) an Olympic figure skater, 2) a professional ballerina, or 3) a big-time editor at one of the big-time publishing houses in Manhattan.

6. I have very little willpower, especially when it comes to food. Sometimes I wish that I actually gained weight easily because I think I'd be much more motivated to eat a lot healthier than I sometimes do.

7. I suffer from perfectionism and I hardly ever think I'm good enough.

8. I've also suffered from secondary infertility for the past three years. We had no problems getting pregnant with John. Why is it so hard the second time around? This is one of the great mysteries of my life right now.

9. I'm rarely bored. I always have things to do. And most of the time, I like it that way.

10. I'd usually rather be reading. I love books and I love to read. We have four bookshelves in our living room that are full of books. And we need another shelf!

Now I'm supposed to give this award to seven other bloggers with the instructions for them to do this same thing, but honestly, if you're a blogger and you regularly read my blog, I'm sure that one of your many fine qualities is honesty. So if you want it, I award it to you!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Even though I ended up not voting for Barack Obama, I was happy when he won and I'm optimistic for some of the much-needed changes and fixes that I hope he'll bring to our great country. Since today is Inauguration Day, I'm posting some of my favorite photos of the Obamas that I've had scattered around on my desktop for the past few months. I think his daughters are the cutest, and overall I love Michelle Obama's taste in clothes. I think she'll be a fun First Lady to watch. And although I don't love everything about Obama's politics, I still like him and have a great deal of respect for him, and I want him to succeed.

Laugh if you want, but I totally took pictures of the TV on Election Night of Obama giving his acceptance speech in Chicago. It was a historic occasion, the U.S. having elected its first black president, and I imagined I was there in the audience snapping pictures instead of watching from the comfort of my couch in Connecticut.

I liked how the family coordinated their clothes in red and black that night. I thought Michelle's dress was a little weird, but Sasha and Malia's dresses were perfect!

From everything I've seen, he looks like he's a wonderful father to his girls. That is a good indication of a man's character.

Voting on Election Day
I love how close these two seem. I think they set a good example of a unified marriage for the country and for the world. (I hope the super-stressful job of being President doesn't put too much strain on their relationship in the years to come.)

CUTE DRESS! I want it!
(It's always nice to end on a fashionable note, isn't it?)

And so today begins the Obama years. I hope and pray that they will be good ones. Now possibly more than ever, we need them to be good ones.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Strange Incident Involving an Ear

On a Friday afternoon not too long ago, I noticed that my 3-year-old son John's right ear had suddenly, inexplicably swollen up. Why it had done this was a complete mystery to me because he was fine, with no other symptoms except a huge puffy ear. So I didn't worry too much about it, especially since the swelling was gone by the next morning and hasn't returned since. I took pictures of this strange little incident so that we'll be able to laugh about how funny he looked with a huge ear when he's older. I'm sure he'll appreciate that, don't you?

The super-morphed ear:
What his ears normally look like:
See how much it stuck out?!

He was oblivious to the fact that he had a huge morphed ear. And he had no idea that I was laughing at his expense. Because for what purpose do we have children than for our own amusement? Ha ha ha!

Friday, January 9, 2009

10 Things I Love that Start With the Letter "H"

This is a fun little blogging game that's been going around. I saw it on Lisa's blog yesterday, and she gave me the letter H. If you want to do it, mention it in your comment and I'll give you a letter, and then you can write on your blog about ten things you like that start with that letter.

1. Hand lotion. My hands would turn into crusty dry appendages without several daily applications of hand lotion, especially in the winter.

2. My Highlander. I love it!

3. History. There are few things I enjoy learning about, reading about, and thinking about more than history! My favorite is American history.

4. Halloween. It's such a fun, simple, stress-free holiday!

5. Hayley, my 16-year-old niece. She was the cutest little girl and I loved babysitting her when she was young. Now she's a beautiful junior in high school and she lives about 90 minutes away, up in Massachusetts. I wish we lived closer so that we could see each other more often (and so that she could babysit John!).

Hayley at our family dinner at The Olive Garden last Saturday.

6. Hiking. It's one of my favorite forms of recreation and exercise. I went on a beautiful hike in the fall and I really, really enjoyed it. My legs are made for hiking! I need to get out and do it more.

7. Hopkinton, Massachusetts, my hometown, located 25 miles west of Boston. My mother's family has been there for generations, and my ancestors were among the early settlers there. Brigham Young's family lived there just before he was born, and they sold their land to my ancestors when they moved.

8. Hamburgers. I love a good hamburger, whether it's from a fast-food restaurant or a a nice thick juicy one from a summer barbecue. Yum!

9. Huckleberry Finn. He's one of my favorite fictional characters, and the book has been at the top of my favorites list ever since I first read it. I didn't think I'd like it very much, but I was wrong. What an inspiring, brilliant book!

10. Handel's Messiah. It's one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever written. When I took a music class in college and studied this piece, I read that Handel said he wrote it under divine influence, that it was inspired by God. It sure sounds like it!

And one more, because I like a surprisingly high number of things that begin with "H": Highlights. They help my hair look much better, particularly in the winter when my natural blond color goes dark and limp.

My freshly highlighted head.

Oh, oh, just one more! I'm on a roll! Hershey, Pennsylvania. It's one of my most favorite vacation spots ever. I loved it there when we went a few years ago--the beautiful, elegant Hotel Hershey and its amazing Spa, Hershey Park (a big, fun amusement park), lots of history, lots of chocolate, all nestled in the beautiful rolling countryside of Pennsylvania.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

2008 in 38 Questions

Hello, I'm back!! I've been wanting to do something to sum up my 2008, and I found a fun, easy way to do it on Lisa's blog yesterday. I like to review each year as it passes and remember the good and the bad and see what I can learn from it all. So without further ado...

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before? I planted a vegetable garden. I explored the possibility of doing freelance work for a local newspaper. I finally started using my intimidating digital SLR camera. I met two of the Ghost Hunters from TAPS!

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I don't think I made new year's resolutions last year, even though I usually do. I have made some resolutions for 2009 (#1 is to get good-quality sleep. This year I will become a champion sleeper. I'm serious!).

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Peter's brother's wife had a baby girl in July

4. Did anyone close to you die? Yes, Peter's Grandma Cost, who passed away one year ago from yesterday. Also, although I didn't know him personally, President Hinckley passed away, a man for whom I had much respect, appreciation, and love.

5. What countries did you visit? It's not a country, although it's owned by England: We spent a wonderful week on the island of Grand Cayman in the British West Indies (southern Caribbean) in the spring.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008? A baby!

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? March 8th--John turned 3 and we had a fun family party. November 1st--a memorable and fun day trip with my friend Alyson up to Salem, Mass.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? I started exercising regularly, after years of wanting to start that up again. And I've really come to enjoy it. I'm now a big fan of Pilates, 4-5 days a week, 20 minutes a day, right at home.

9. What was your biggest failure? I should have had a better attitude about certain things, and I shouldn't have been so hard on myself as much as I was.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? I got sick a few times, but nothing too serious. I got the worst, most painful kanker sore ever in June. It ruined my life for a week.

11. What was the best thing you bought? A silver 2008 Toyota Highlander SUV. It's a dream come true. Actually my husband bought it as a surprise for my birthday. The best thing I personally bought was a painting of George Washington praying at Valley Forge that I've wanted for a long time.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration? Certain politicans (Mitt Romney, Barack Obama)

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? Certain politicians (Mike Huckabee...Grrrrrr)

14. Where did most of your money go? Back into the economy in various ways to help keep it chugging along. Peter claims that we pay Target's mortgage, but I beg to differ.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? My new car, the Cayman Islands trip, and our summer vacation on Cape Cod.

16. What songs will always remind you of 2008? "The Twelve Days of Christmas." Because my son has been obsessed with it for the past two Christmases and beyond, so I started and ended 2008 with that song.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? Happier. b) thinner or fatter? The same. I stay the same weight no matter what. (Fortunately, it's a weight that I'm happy with.) c) richer or poorer? Poorer. Dang economy!

18. What do you wish you’d done more of? I wish I'd taken it easy more often and not been as rigid about getting things done and keeping to schedules and routines so much.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Self-criticizing, thanks to the lifestyle disorder known as perfectionism.

20. How did you spend Christmas? At home with Peter and John. It was a really nice, peaceful Christmas.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008? Yes, with our DVR, Facebook, and The Office.

22. What was your favorite TV program? There are a number of shows that I like to watch, but that show Wipeout on NBC in the summer was so hilarious. I loved it!

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? No. There's enough hate in the world without me adding to it.

24. What was the best book you read? It's a tie between The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield and Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Actually, I think Twilight wins!

25. What was your greatest musical discovery? That my son truly loves music and instruments. I like watching him enjoy music as much as he does.

26. What did you want and get? A remodeled kitchen and an SUV

27. What did you want and not get? A baby. A new chandelier for the dining room. New window treatments for the house.

28. What was your favorite film of this year? Probably The Dark Knight

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 28 and I got a manicure and pedicure, relaxed on the patio with my son, and enjoyed the warm, green summer day. I ordered a mushroom pizza for dinner (one of my faves) and Peter and John made me a cake.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? You guessed it--a baby. Or at least a successful pregnancy.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008? Classic, form-fitting, feminine, and modest.

32. What kept you sane? The gospel

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Michael Phelps!

34. What political issue stirred you the most? The race for President. I was a Mitt Romney supporter (I am a Mormon from Massachusetts after all) and I'm still ticked that he doesn't get to prove how useful he could be to this country and the world...for now, anyway.

35. Who did you miss? Friends from college and high school who I haven't seen in awhile. And Grandma Cost.

36. Who was the best new person you met? Dave Tango! (see Question 1)

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008. Be patient and maintain a good perspective on whatever comes your way in life.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year. "On the first day of Christmas my true love sent to me..." Because my stage of life right now is that of being a mother to a preschooler, so his music is also mine. And that's okay with me!