Sunday, January 17, 2016

Happy New Year

I stayed home from church today to be with Skip, who is sick for the 10th day in a row.  (Actually, he felt much better on Friday and yesterday, so I thought the sickness was behind us.  However, last night, he woke up with vomiting and stomach pain and then did not fully wake up until 1PM.  Last Thursday, I took him to the doctor-----Hang on.  Right now I can hear Jane explaining to Skip about why we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day--about how people with brown skin did not enjoy the same freedoms as people with light skin, and about how Dr. King worked to change that. :) -----Anyway, the doctor advised me to give Skip a couple more days to start feeling better, and if he didn't, to take a sample of his stool.  I will be calling him (the doctor) tomorrow to see if I should go ahead and do that.  At this point, I'm getting worried.  Stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea for 10 days off and on?  Not normal. At least not for us....)
But yeah, since I had some quiet time in the house, I got to write on my blog.  What a treat.   
So 2015 is over.  What a relief.  It did end well, though.  Our Christmas was wonderful and a couple days afterward, the kids and I headed to Utah to play with our cousins in the snow.  That was wonderful, too.  Brian and I have been getting along considerably better as well.  Last night, we enjoyed a night together in Eugene and it was so wonderful.     The food was good, and so was the conversation. 

Brian mentioned to me that he's noticed that Camp really talks to me a lot.  I said, "You mean he talks a lot?  Or he talks to me a lot?"   Brian said he thinks Camp really talks TO ME a lot!  That makes me feel so happy!  Yeah, I guess he does talk to me a lot!  I'm so grateful and proud of the boy he has
become.    Sigh...

The other night, I was on the computer long after the kids were supposed to be in bed and asleep and Janey came up to me and put her arm around me and tried to cuddle.  I hugged her back, but told her to go get back in bed.  She didn't want to, but I told her to do it anyway.  I was bugged at her for being out of bed.  The next morning, I regretted it.  She is such an easy, wonderful girl.  Why didn't I take advantage of that alone time with her?  I'll have to make it up to her.  Maybe tonight I'll go get her after the other kids are asleep and color with her or do a puzzle.   (I remember being a young girl and having a period of time when my mom let Sarah and I stay up late and work on a puzzle with her while we all ate Oreos and milk.  Do you remember that, Sarah? )   A week or so ago, I flew out of town to attend Bud's funeral (which was wonderful--the funeral and the trip) and Skip woke up sick that morning, so I didn't feel comfortable sending him to Angie's like I had planned.  Instead, I asked Jane if she would mind staying home from school with him.  She's 10.  And amazing.

This year, we had Thanksgiving at the church with many of our ward friends.  It was wonderful.

Skip's first picture of The Nativity

I met a new friend at the Nativity Festival this year.  He joined us on Christmas Eve and was wonderful company.

The Robisons: Some of my favorite Christmas Eve guests

Who knew?

And my girl, Shugee.  Man, what a fun girl.  She is like the little performer in her class--always singing solos in the morning announcements and stuff.  And she's back in gymnastics.  The girl is strong.  And she's been bugging me to take her on her special date--the one where Brian and I tell her about sex.  I wonder if she knows what's coming.  So far, none of our kids have freaked out like I did when I got the low-down.  

And this Boy.  My baby.    Every day for as long as I can remember, I have told him to stop growing up.  And yet in nine days--nine more x's on his Ninja Turtle calendar--my youngest will be 5.  I hate that story.   He can't wait, though.   He has been asking me constantly when his birthday is for months.    So I'm gonna try and make as big a deal of it as I can.   Being as close to Christmas as it is, it is hard to try and think of birthday gifts for him, but I think we are going to get him some of his own art supplies (he has become an exceptionally good color-er and cutter-outer) and the Hungry Hungry Hippos game, and maybe a bubble gum machine.  We'll see, though, because the boy does not eat healthfully.   And then on the evening of his birthday, we are going to play human Hungry Hippos.   Have you seen the videos on Youtube?  He's gonna love it.  

I finally got these faux fur pillows I've been wanting for a year.  Love them.

I clearly missed my calling.  :)

Thanks for reading.  

Monday, November 16, 2015

Time Flies and My Dresser Reveal

I finally have a few seconds to write on my blog and all my words escape me.  Sooooo....  

I saw this stick thing at a shop when I was shopping with Brooke.  I'm gonna make one.  

Because it probably isn't clear--this is a crumb cake "8".

One of my favorite things about Camp is his confidence  Here he is sporting mismatched socks, MY exercise pants, and a rag (that i use to clean the toilet) hanging from his pants.  You know.  Because all the professionals have toilet rags hanging from their pants.

At the last second, Brian Holmes made Janey a custom retainer with fangs.  Lucky girl.

Things are actually going pretty well right now (knock on wood).  Brian and I have had a few good weeks in the last month, and last week was especially good.  We enjoyed a mini-getaway to Driftwood Shores last Friday and then went out to dinner and a movie on Saturday.  (We saw the new James Bond movie.  I wouldn't recommend it...unless you're a guy--or a woman whose husband is having a birthday and wants to go see it.  Then go. )  But the biggest success of last week was that Brian and I had like TWO conversations --about business stuff--during which we did not argue or get mean or upset.   And we had another one this morning.  SQQUUEEAAALLL!  That is HUGE!  (Huge for the last six months, at the very least.)  So I'm hoping we are truly on the road to recovery.  Aaaannnd, I've been praying for the gift of Interpretation of Tongues.  Specifically, I would like the gift to be able to understand Brian and have him understand me.  That is what the gift of Interpretation of Tongues is, right?  I think so.  And I think Heavenly Father will answer my prayer.  He always does.  :)

If we're friends on Instagram, you may have already seen this, but I wanted to document it here, too--because it was a lot of work and I think it turned out awesome.  I picked up this dresser at my favorite little thrift store in town for like 30 bucks.

 It was originally much uglier than in the picture below because it had one of those yellowing, kinda shiny-type finishes that was on all mid-century furniture.  But the top is not solid wood.  It's a veneer.  So the finish wasn't pretty.  But anyway, I stripped the finish, did a lot of sanding, primed, sanded again, painted, and then added a non-yellowing clear coat.  (I forgot the name of the product, but I could find it if you were curious.  )  How do you like that for a tutorial??  

Oh, yeah.  And I found these awesome pulls on Ebay and then picked up some Brasso to resurrect them.  I used a little tube of gold leaf to fill in some of the grooves at the bottom of the dresser.  What do you think?

See that lovely valance thing over the window to the play room on the right?  Right.  How could you miss it?  Well, our landlady said we could take it down!  Yay!  That will settle at least some of the turmoil inside me.  :)  And is the fact that my USA thing is not centered over the couch totally bugging you?  Yeah, me, too.  But I had to hang it on studs.  Brian's gonna help me switch the location of the hangers on the back of it so that I can have it centered and still on the studs.

I scored this little bowl thing at a little antique-type shop when I was visiting Brooke.  It makes me feel like my stuff is a bit more "collected over time" and not just collected at Homegoods.  :)
I am so happy with the bedding I collected for the boys' room.  I got the striped flannel blankets and duvet covers at Pottery Barn and the velvet toss pillows at Joss & Main.  If you look really closely, you can see the little green pom-poms on the corners of them.  Perfect!

And this is the little table I traveled like 400 miles for.  Well worth it.  It's perfect!  I plan to get this chair to go with it:

And I think  maybe my shelf-decorating skills may be improving.  I've always been terrible at decorating shelves.  After staring at countless pictures, though, I feel like I'm learning that color, and proportion, and distribution, and scale all make a big difference.  Hopefully I'll continue to learn.  And check out the contact paper I lined the back of this book shelf with.  Isn't it great??  I got it at Target for $30.  I think the whole roll would have covered around 25 square feet.  So that's pretty good.  My little touches of fuchsia  will have to go come Christmas when the red stuff comes out, but I've quite liked it.  

I picked up some fun wrapping paper at Homegoods last week--possibly the only money I'll be spending on Christmas decor this year......  Hmmm.  I'm realizing that red stuff will not look good with most of these papers.  Maybe I won't use the red stuff this year.  Maybe it will be all neutrals and blues.  We"ll see.

So I'm writing on a different day now.   Brian and I had another fight.... Sigh.....  Marriage is hard.  So, so hard. 
This last six months has been the hardest of our marriage since the first year.  

 And even though we struggle often and I have to pray for the gift of Interpretation of Tongues,  every night I also thank Heavenly Father for the nearly perfect life he's given me.   I really do feel grateful.  I feel grateful to be married at all, let alone to a really, really good man.   And I'm sooooo grateful to be a mom.  What a blessing!  And I have a million extended family members whom I love and who love me.   And I am healthy and strong,  and I have money to buy bedding and go out to eat every so often and fly to Vegas for girls' reunions.  That is the life I've always wanted.  When I pray and verbalize my gratitude, I'm reminded that I need to LIVE my gratitude.  You know?  Be a doer of the word and not just a speaker of it, only.    So I'm trying.  I'm trying.