The Evil Force

A couple years ago Olaf walked out of work. And saw this car in the parking lot. He couldn't resist getting a few pics.

The license plate is pretty awesome. You see, we love Star Wars at this house. Baby has so many Star Wars Legos that it's ridiculous. But Middle Child absolutely LOVES Darth Vader.

So he had to get a pic of the hood of the Star Wars car. Pretty nice paint job! Once we asked Middle Child why he liked Darth Vader so much, hoping it wasn't because he was evil. His reply, you ask?

"Because he can make people do whatever he wants them to do!"

We tried to explain the difference between the the Evil Darth Vader forcing people to do things versus the Good side of the Force, the Jedi's, using the Force for the benefit of others. But being the victim of his older brother, he was much more interested in Making People Do Things.


The Party

Olaf, being the awesomest hubby that he is, called me Tuesday morning and grounded me from facebook for a few days. Not because I was having a secret affair via facebook cuz we all know that doesn't work very well, everything on facebook is public. But he grounded me without any good reasons. And since my birthday was coming up I went along with it. He always likes to surprise me with things so I stayed off so I could be happily surprised.

He FINALLY came home from work Wednesday night and I said, "Where are we eating? I'm starving! I've been waiting and trying not to eat the house. Where are we going?"

Trying to be all casual and nonchalant he says, "We could go to Jaxie's, that's your favorite place in town."

"Let's go then! Everyone in the car!" and we were off.

We got there and the kids told us what they wanted and ran upstairs to watch TV, or so I thought. Olaf asked what I wanted and then sent me upstairs to watch them. So I headed upstairs. Just as I rounded the last bend I saw Baby poke his head around the corner, see me, duck back, and whisper loudly, "She's coming!" So I knew there was someone up there.

"Happy Birthday!!!!" From 30 or more people! It was so awesome that so many friends came and ate dinner and cake with me! And some people even brought presents! I don't expect presents from anyone but Olaf. It was so sweet of everyone!
This is me with my Pioneer Woman Cookbook, the only thing I really wanted for my Birthday. I should rephrase that, the only thing I wanted that was within the budget.

Here's Olaf's Scout Assistant helping the adorable little boy. He belongs to a good friend of mine who this guy doesn't know. But this little boy was so stinking cute, he was SO EXCITED for a Birthday Party! He kept running up to me and telling me Happy Birthday.

Here's the balloons another good friend put up for Olaf. He stalked her while she was at Mom2.0 until she finally told him she'd call him this week when she was back in the state. He begged her, "I don't know how to do this stuff, will you get balloons?"

Here are a bunch of my friends eating the delicious food of Jaxie's. Some had never been here before, but they all loved it!

Here are more friends visiting and hanging out. Enjoying the good food and deliciously decadent chocolate cake and ice cream.

Here's another pic of my friends. They're all the best! I think in this picture is one of Calvin's best friends that came. She'd be sitting near Middle Child cuz he was the only other person here that she knew. (Personally, she's braver than I ever was at that age!) I was so happy to see her here. I love his friends that I've gotten to know over the last year. They are all so great! A few of his other friends wanted to come but were swamped with homework.

My neighbor whose boys are the same age as Calvin and Baby and have been best friends with them since they were 2 and could play together. They are so cute and sweet. I love it when her older boy comes to get the younger one and he always hides and pretends he's not here. It makes him so mad!

Here's me visiting with some more good friends getting ready to leave. I told them thanks for coming and they said "Any chance to get out without the kids!" I laughed. They could have brought them, but I totally understand.

I'm reading my Big Birthday Card everyone signed with our bestest friends. They're the friends that are just like family. This guy here is so much like Olaf that we call them Twins, or Brothers from other Mothers, and other things I can't mention here.

Here's one of the decadent chocolate cakes. This one has almost black roses for the 40th Birthday. I asked about Oscar and Elmo. Middle Child said that Dad said they were appropriate. That was the only answer I got. The other cake was almost gone before we were 10 minutes into the party. It was also delicious.

These are a bunch of the cards I got from my family members and friends since they couldn't be here. All in All it was an awesome birthday! Turning 40 was easier than turning 30. Next year might be a different story.

Thank you to Everyone that came, called, facebooked, emailed, texted, and whatever else you did to wish me a Happy Birthday! I love you all!


Fairy Dust

Tomorrow (as in Wednesday in case you didn't check this the minute I posted this) is my birthday. No, I'm not excited. And I'm not acting my age. I'll be 39, again. I really don't feel like I'm that old. Some people buy convertibles, some people get new boy/girlfriends half their age, and some people completely ignore their age. I've been buying Glitter Eyeliner. I have more glitter in my possession now than I ever have in my whole life put together. I think that, right there, means I should be turning 19 again, not 39. In the meantime, I haven't deicded on whether I'll be making Chocolate cupcakes or Chocolate cake. They are both to die for. Hope you're having a less eventful day than me!



Middle Child has started picking up on some of the common sayings in prayers within our religion. Things like:

Bless this food to strengthen and nourish our bodies
Bless us all to return home safely
Please bless the missionaries
Bless the sick and afflicted

It has been quite comical and entertaining as he pulls a new one out. Somehow the kid keeps growing up, older and bigger.

Soon after the Haiti earthquake Baby started blessing the quake victims in every single prayer. He is sweet like that. When he had a very sick Cub Scout leader he blessed her constantly. One night soon after the quake he reprimanded Middle Child for forgetting to bless the quake victims.

Middle Child replied, not to be outdone by his little brother, "I think they fall under 'sick and afflicted!'"


Today we had a Real Life Hero come walking down my street. He wasn't in red spandex. He didn't fly through the air. He just came home in his parent's car.

We didn't have much notice and it was only by accident that we knew in advance he was coming. So, we did what we do when our Heroes come home.

We lined his street with flags. I got to help. I got teary-eyed, I always do when I think about these Heroes. They don't consider themselves as such, but they are.

Our Hero had been shot and gets to come home for a few weeks to finish recovering and then back again to the war.

We love and respect our Heroes around here. We always put a few flags out for them when they come home.

We want them to know we are thinking about them, praying for their safety, and begging the Lord to let them come home in one piece and not in a box.

Our Hero's Mother called me tonight to thank us for putting the flags out. Her Hero had made her promise not to tell people he was coming home since he'll be leaving again and he's only home to recover. He doesn't realize how happy we all are to have him home safe and sound, even if only for two weeks.

But as they pulled into the neighborhood while we were putting up the few final flags he asked his Mom, "What? Is it Super-President's Day or something?" And then he grinned. She was just so happy that flags had been put out even though hardly anyone knew he was coming home. Thank goodness for small towns!

Thank you to all our Military Folk. We love you and pray for you!


Along Came a Fish Sandwich

The other day we went to eat at our local chain drive-in, Sonic. They make a pretty good hamburger and they have tater tots, always a bonus. As usual, we all had our food ordered and Olaf was still undecided. So he asked the operator taking our order (traditional bell hop drive-in with deliveries on roller skates, entertaining!) ;

"How's your fish sandwich?"

"It's freakin amazing!" with as much enthusiasm as possible. We were a little taken aback. We've never had anyone recommend any fast food sandwich with that much passion.

"Well, then, I guess I will have the Fish Sandwich! Thanks for the recommendation. Is it getting close to Lent?"

There was silence. "Umm, I don't know. We'll bring your food out soon." Click. We live in Utah. A lot of these people have grown up LDS and don't know a lot about other religions. Lent? What's that? And why are people running around with a big black spot on their foreheads? I love seeing people being introduced to something new they weren't expecting. It's always fun. In the meantime Olaf enjoys Lent for the plethora of Fish Sandwiches.


A Little Pep Talk

On the way home from work last week I was greeted by these signs stapled to telephone poles along the main road. Not the Rent to Own sign, the other one. I saw the first one and thought it was kind of amusing.

Then on the next block was another sign. I wonder if someone was just trying to help all the people coming home from work and school feel better. About something. Maybe themselves. Maybe homework. Maybe possible terrorist attacks.

Someone was trying to get their point across. I wonder if someone didn't want their Significant Other coming home grumpy?

And if being Happy wasn't a good enough message, there was also this message: "All You Need is Love." Now I'm thinking some Budget-Conscious-Hippie is using not-so-subliminal messages to get their ideas across to the general public, cheaply.

But then I saw this sign and thought "Maybe someone is Posting their Valentines in Public! That must be it!"

While the signs were rather unconventional I found myself in a Happier Mood that afternoon.


Happy Valentine's Day!


The Valentine

At my kids' Elementary School the kids can buy valentines for others. The only reason I even know this is because Calvin's class was in charge of selling them when he was in 4th grade. He had fun selling and getting the valentines ready. Middle Child had the same teacher but never once mentioned this activity, even though I know they did it too. They are such different boys. Well, he had a crush on a girl. And she is a cute girl. He had it bad for her for the whole year. Bad enough that he even bought her a Valentine. And not the cheap ones but the more expensive one, $0.50, big money. He had such a crush on her that he had to see if she bought Valentines for anyone. Guess what! She bought him a Valentine. And she only bought three other Valentines, total. (He checked the records to see how many she bought.) He was on Cloud 9! I should have known at this point that he was gonna be a Ladies Man.

But I didn't have a clue.


A New Obsession

I am reliving my childhood. Well, the childhood I didn't have. Don't get me wrong, I had a wonderful childhood. I was happy. And fat. And happy.

With two pair of shoes, one for school and one for church. I'm not complaining cuz I had a great childhood. But I have discovered lately that I love shoes. Especially comfortable ones. Especially flats. Especially fun shoes.

These are my very first pair of Converse. I wasn't so sure if I'd like them but they were on clearance for cheap, I know it was less than $15. I just couldn't pass them up and if I didn't like them I wasn't out much. It wasn't long before I was in LOVE.

The next time I ran across a pair of Converse on Clearance (I have a slight problem with paying full price for clothing and shoes) I just thought they were cool.They were sparkly! And starry! Awesome combination. And I have worn these the most. My absolute favorite of all of them.

You can tell they're my favorite, they're pretty dirty. But that just shows them how much I love them, kind of like that Velveteen Rabbit.

A little later I ran across another pair. I had to have these, they were black, my other ones are brown and white so these would go with a whole nother slew of outfits.

Then just barely I found these. On clearance. Again. They were clearing out winter shoes and somehow these got lost in the shuffle. They definitely aren't wintery, very springy.

I can't wait to wear shorts and capris with these flowery, fun, shoes! Too bad it's barely February. Maybe I should move South of here.

Makes you wanna go and get your own pair, doesn't it?


The Z-Word

Many of you know that Baby has an aversion to Zombies. He is deathly afraid of them. We are not allowed to speak the word at our house. We refer to them as The Z-Word. Last year around Thanksgiving time Olaf and I went to the movies. Specifically, Zombieland. I'm not a Zombie fan, but this movie was hilarious. I loved it.

Last week it came out on DVD. I bought it. I'm going to have to hide it in the house somewhere. And sneak it out late at night to watch after Baby has gone to sleep. For those of you that have seen it, go get yourself a Twinkie, they do have an expiration date.


Please Hurry!!!

I was driving down the street at the very beginning of January and look! On the street! Drumming up business already. Heaven help me. I don't know if I can drive while laughing this hard.

Now, usually there is only one Liberty Look-a-Like. But on this fateful day as I begged Middle Child to take a picture while I was driving by very slowly (slow enough that I hope they didn't mistake the camera for a gun and call the cops) there were TWO Mr. Liberty's hanging out! This picture can't even do it justice but the Mr. Liberty without a sign is dancing pretty hard. It's not even that cold, it's not like he needs to stay warm.

And they wanted MY business! He pointed right at us as we drove by. I have never understood what kind of person it takes to sign up for this job, but I know one of the qualifications is CRAZY!

I know I probably shouldn't judge,
the guy is employed in these hard economic times.
April 15th can't come soon enough.


A New Bostaf for the Baby

Baby's birthday was just yesterday. He turned nine. I'm not quite sure how that happened. I forbid him to grow any more a couple years ago. He just keeps defying my commands. But on his birthday four years ago he got this awesome uniform. He was so excited.

And then this year they changed a few things at the studio. Now he gets to learn how to use a Bostaf. He went to a special class to learn about Bostaf safety. I know they're trying to teach the kids to not whack each other with them, but it's a nine-year-old boy. The next time Middle Child bugs him, I'm sure he'll whack him with his Bostaf. Because he got to pick out and I got to buy him his very own Bostaf. He was ecstatic. He brought it home the other day. He showed me some awesome moves with it and then I noticed a white label on the end. I went to peel it off, assuming it was the UPC code. But it wasn't. It was something much better.

It was a warning. All this time Karate instructors have been touting the benefits of Karate for children; it teaches discipline, attention, and self defense. But in all reality everyone else thinks that Karate is a High Risk Activity. Apparently Paralysis and Death can occur while using this product! I didn't know I bought him a magic wand? Hopefully he isn't struck dead the next time he picks it up for class.



The other morning I took Baby to his 9am Basketball game. I left the others home sleeping, cuz I'm that kind of awesome Mom and Wife. During the first quarter I got a call from Olaf.

"Are we doing anything today?" he asked.

"Uummm, not that I can think of. Why?"

"Middle Child's friend called and wants to take him to the zoo. I had to give him a hard time when he called. He asked for Middle Child and I told him he wasn't here, he was at his girlfriend's house. All he said was OK. Then I said, 'Middle Child doesn't have a girlfriend and I wouldn't let him spend the night anyway! What kind of Dad do you think I am?' and he replied 'A weird Dad.'"

"Well, sounds like he's got you pegged."