Monday, November 30, 2009

Reed and Jax

Somewhat telling....Reed in the waves and Jaxon approaching cautiously. :)

More CA blogging/photos to come, and you can check out my Facebook page, too, if you're impatient.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Mommy Mantra #6: I Am Not This Feeling

I needed to remind myself today that I am not Stress, I am not Frustration, I am not Selfishness. I am Rae--who sometimes (or often) feels stress, frustration, or selfish. Enjoy the quote!

"Sometimes feelings set in for extended stays, as with depression. Or for some of us, we have habitual and reflexive ways of dealing with certain events...I am not this feeling [liberates us] from having to react to the situation in [our] old conditioned way. Of course, if you are telling yourself you're an anxious person, you'll act anxiously. One would anticipate angry people to react with anger. But reminding yourself that you are larger than any given emotion offers the potential to react with a greater spectrum of responses. It's easy with the enormous and often uncivilized demands of mothering to overidentify with our emotions and label ourselves as angry, fed up, or stressed. And while these may be a part of who we are at any given moment, the truth is that we are also much more...there is another way of perceiving our emotions and ourselves."

Pages 27 &28, Mommy Mantras by Bethany E. Casarjian, Ph.D. & Diane H. Dillon, Ph.D.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Allergy FYI

A couple of weeks ago, when Jaxon came to me after class at church, he told me he was itchy. I figured he was hot in his clothes. We got home, and for about two hours, he said nothing more about it. Then he came to Phill with red cheeks and said, "Dad, my body itches."

Phill helped him undress, and lo and behold--he had hives on his back, his stomach, legs, waist (especially at the back), chest, and face--especially the cheeks. We were perplexed and mildly alarmed. We wondered if his treat in Primary had caused this, but didn't get an answer when we called his teachers.

So then we wondered about other things--had he been in contact with some sort of strong soap? Had a bug bit him? Had we fed him something new? The answers to all three, as far as we knew
--no, no, no.

We decided to give him a half-dose of Benadryl.
Wouldn't you know--the hives went away completely. So we knew that we were dealing with an allergic reaction of some sort....we just had no clue what it was. The hives did return that night. And the next day. And the day after that. They always responded with Benadryl, and they weren't covering a huge portion of his skin.

Anyway, 3 days in, I finally realized that the hives were where his clothes touched him most--on his back towards his armpits. At the waistband of his underwear. On his cheeks, where his shirt would brush his face as I brought it down over his head. On his calves where his jeans touched his skin. I called my grandma (the Allergy Queen) to run our theory by her, and with her confirmation, decided it must be the new laundry detergent we had just purchased. Tide with lavender.

I lamented to my grandma that I'd have to throw out or give away an entire box of detergent, but she told me I could just give the clothes an extra rinse and be fine.
And guess what? She was absolutely right. We've not had another hives incident since.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


The beginning of my dear friend Cara's most brilliant blog,

The D.I. Denizen

It is pure genius! Seasoned thrifters, beginning thrifters, and curious passersby--you HAVE to see this awesome blog!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Photo Overload Part II: Staheli Farms

I'm sure lots of you have already seen most of these on my Facebook page, but I thought I'd put them up here, too. Just for kicks. :)

First up are photos from our visit to Staheli Farms, where we got to enjoy a playground (with corn!), a pumpkin patch, farm animals (that the kids refused to touch), and a corn maze.

Photo Overload, a.k.a., Playing Catch-Up: Halloween

I wasn't even going to dress up for Halloween, until Phill told me HE was planning on it...and then I quickly came up with June Cleaver, using stuff I had on hand (interestingly enough), except for the pearls and my lipstick. :) And the fake eyelashes.

Now, Phill....Phill, being the jokerster that he is....Phill's good friend, local radio personality Jon Smith, kept telling Phill that he should be the Brawny paper towel guy for Halloween. But Phill didn't like that idea, and chose, instead, to dress as our very own.....(drumroll, please)....JON SMITH! Jon's face when he saw Phill was priceless. He is very rarely surprised, and he was beyond surprised. Here are pictures for comparison. Hard to see in the first photo, but Phill actually put black makeup in his hair to take the transformation even further.

Savanna was an ornery (and tail-less) kitty.

Jaxon, our ninja. He's good at mysterious.

Reed, a pirate. Not entirely sure what he's doing here? One of only a couple photos I got of him--he was raring to go and only lightly humored me!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Well, bless my soul! (Say it with a Southern accent. It will sound better.) I have been given the Honest Scrap Award from my fellow blogger, Rae!

That's right--Rae. We share a name, as well as an interest in blogging and photography, and a willingness to serve with the Scouts when asked. (Examine the last part of that sentence closely. I am delicately phrasing my true feelings about that particular calling, which I have had no less than three times.)
Rae is funny, easy to get along with, hard-working, creative, and kind. She is definitely one of my favorite bloggers!

So along with the award, I have some responsibilities.

1) I must thank the person who gave the award and list their blog and link it.

2) Share "10 Honest Things" about myself.
3) Present this award to 7 others whose blogs I find brilliant in content and/or design, or those who have encouraged me.
4) Tell those 7 people they've been awarded HONEST SCRAP and inform them of these guidelines in receiving the award.

10 Honest Things
About Me

1 - I hate when men have long nails. As in a teensy bit of white showing. Call me picky or old-fashioned--I just don't like it! I like a man's hands to look...MANLY.

2 - Last week I bought a shirt designed by Miley Cyrus (or the designer they picked to make things that Miley could put her name on).

3 - I make up random (and ridiculous) songs a lot. When I was still at home, my sisters (okay, just the younger sisters) and I made up songs on the fly quite often. My personal favorites: "Do You Like My Black Shirt? I Do" and "Do Your Armpits Smell Like..." (I will not finish the rest of that title.)

4 - I still sometimes dance like a crazy person when I'm all alone in my room. Once Phill walked in, and I almost cried with embarrassment. Sweet man that he is, he just smiled. The biggest smile I've ever seen. As in: If I don't keep smiling hugely, I will be laughing within seconds.

5 - My first job was on an Army base in the security clearance section. I got to ogle cute soldiers (and sometimes read their files), read mysteries, email friends, and listen to U2.

6 - I love shopping at D.I., but I'm telling you, there is a smell, and it is weird, and I do have to concentrate a little to forget about it when I walk in. It's worth the good deals, though.

7 - I often wish that I had an incredibly useful skill (besides photography and, well, baby-rearing), and every time I go past the crafts book section of Barnes & Noble, I am stalled for a good 30 minutes, dreaming of the new talent I will acquire. "Oooooo, beading!! I will have beaded pillows decorating the whole house!" -or- "Basket Weaving! I will have an Etsy shop and a booth at the fair and a whole BUSINESS of basket weaving! Underwater, even!" -or- "How to Become a Carpenter in 30 Days?! I WILL become a carpenter! I'll build EVERYTHING for the house!" True, I am ambitious and interested and idealistic. Most of these ideas fall flat right out of the gate, but one day, I am sure I will find a new endeavor that will latch on with ferocity.

8 - I LOVE notebooks. Paper of all kinds, really, but....notebooks. Which are a close cousin to books--just gloriously blank. I have to resist the urge to buy every moleskine notebook I see, every attractively-decorated journal, every package of pretty paper. It is bad. Very bad. I have banned myself from notebook-buying for a couple of years at a time when it was discovered (by a somewhat-shocked Phill) that I had no less than 15 unused notebooks. "Sweetheart, what do you even need these for?" "I don't KNOW! But I WILL need them! Soon! For something!" It is my only tendency towards packratism. Otherwise, I am ruthless in the amount of things I keep "just in case". *Okay. Pencils, too, and pens, and honestly, pretty much all other office supplies.

9 - Sometimes I snort when I laugh.

10 - I come from a rich family tradition of reading aloud to each other. We love to do various voices, and get into the story in an almost comical way. One of my favorite memories is a Christmas at my grandma's house (I think I was 15?) when my brother Isaac read Harry Potter aloud to my younger sisters and I. His voice for Snape was so perfect, so oily, so snake-y. It made us laugh--and him too--every time it came up. My oldest brother, Reed, used to read Roald Dahl books to us when I was little--about 7. His voices were perfect, too. The BFG is one of the first books I remember having read to me, aside from The Book of Mormon and a simple school book.

Now--you seven whom I have nominated:

My brilliant brother-in-law, Eric, over at LDS Prosperity

My beautiful friend and smashing photographer, Marie at MAG GAB

The mother to three beautiful girls and a dear friend, Cyndie at The Secret Lives of Tracys

Another photographer friend (watch out, it's contagious!) of mine who has actually known me since I was born, and is more family than friend--Christy at Life with the Schnegel-kins

My cousin, who continues to inspire me with her own personal growth and progress, Annie at The Delights of Our Lives

My sister, Abby, who manages to post just what I need, when I need it. Check out a particularly humorous post on her blog, Business As Usual.

And lastly--not leastly--Lara at Overstuffed. It's good stuff, people. And she always welcomes new readers, so hop on over and say hi.

I don't like the fact that it only let me nominate 7.
There are quite a few more I would have liked to link to--so if you don't see yourself on here, count yourself nominated, anyway, please.