Sunday, January 27, 2008

Our Prophet, our leader, a Man of God.

I have been struggling all week with what to write about the passing of President Hinckley.
I would take hours for me to describe what he has meant to me and our family. FM100 has said it best for me this week, and I wanted to share it with anyone who would like to hear it. Right now it's on our homepage, once you get there click the .mp3 file and listen.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Guilty Pleasures

Those of you that know me well know that I am an incredibly task-oriented person and leave myself with very little relaxing time, if any. I haven't watched a movie in what seems like years and I never really go out with friends or anything like that. Honestly though, I really do take pleasure in the everyday 'chores', cleaning, organizing, gardening, folding darling girls clothes, you know what I mean. You've gotta do it, you may as well enjoy it! If I could be a stay-at-home mom I would be, and I would revel in every moment. I digress, back to my point. Although I don't have much playtime, I do have a few very small guilty pleasures that I treat myself with (ok, the occasional episode of Girls Next Door), but I have found a new and favorite guilty pleasure that has become a small obsession. Something I think about as I'm trying to finish up the dinner dishes as fast as I can (one-handed, still can't get my right hand wet!), something I think about as I sit in stressful meetings at work (yes, went back on Tuesday), and something I look forward to just having a few short minutes to indulge in as soon as I can sneak away and do it. It makes me feel good. It makes me feel young again (I'm still young but you know what I mean). I forget about all the stresses in life when I am with it, and it really brings out the inner rock-star in me. Yes, you guessed it, I am talking about GUITAR HERO III!

Santa Claus searched far and wide to find an elf that could make one in time to bring to the Francis boys. I am so glad he did. They have enjoyed it tremendously but their mother has fallen in love! If you have never played it, you won't understand but if you have, I have to brag that I am now on level 'HARD' and can 4-5 star every song on Medium. Metallica's 'ONE' in is in particular my favorite.

Seriously though, I stay on task and limit 'non-productive' time I can have, I really only play 1-2 songs (if that) a day at the most BUT what a great way to de-stress and forget about the world! If you don't have one, I highly recommend it. Speaking of, I think Weezer's 'My Name is Jonas' is calling me.......(hey wait, that's my maiden name!)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

In Another's Eyes

My parents bought Easton a Digital Camera for Christmas! We uploaded his pictures over the weekend and I was just cracking up looking at them. I'm looking at pictures of things only a 13-year old would think of taking pictures of. There are pictures of burned hot dogs, quesadillas he made himself for lunch, his Wii box, Jane's shoes, just random things! A lot of the pictures however, turned out pretty cute and showed different sides of the person's personality. Such as:
Brandon making some sort of 'rock on' sign...

The same from their cute cousin Hannah...

Jane Crying!...

A picture of a picture of Brandon...

My personal favorite; a picture of Jane with her diaper on backwards...

Jane signing "eat!"

Pictures of other people taking pictures (cousin Katie!)...

...and of course, the signature camera-holding picture of 'self'.
I'll look forward to more pictures through this budding photographer's eyes!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

It was an Egg-cident Mom!

You know the picture your mom has of you, (or you have of your child) proudly sitting on the bathroom floor with a whole toilet paper roll unwound? Or maybe it's sitting on the kitchen floor with 8 new bananas opened and smashed into the floor. (Both of which, Easton did as a toddler!) Well, everyone has those moments with their toddlers, and last night was mine with Jane. I was making lemon bars for Eric (his favorite dessert) and had just pulled out my eggs. I turned to grab a lemon, and.....CRACK! I turn around, and that's what I saw! Yep, Jane had quickly grabbed the 18 carton of Omega-3 Brown Eggs from Oakdell Farms and dumped it on the floor! My first instinct was to quickly start cleaning it up but I knew that although it wasn't funny right that second, it sure would be when she was 16. So, I raced downstairs to grab the camera and thought I'd share! And yes, I was able to salvage 3 of them - just enough for the recipe!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Special Traditions

I know the holidays are over, but I have some friends that thought I should share some of our Christmas traditions on our blog. Hopefully one of these traditions will be something that you can add to your Christmas celebrations!

First of all, 'Ebenezer the Elf' visits our home shortly after Thanksgiving. Ebenezer is very sneaky and we have never been able to catch him or see him in person! He's one of Santa's elves that creates mischief! He checks in on the kids to make sure they're being good for Santa. Ebenezer brings strange candy, writes poems about being good and remembering that Christmas isn't just about Santa and toys. This year he did several funny things. One day he lined the stairs with candy canes, (note picture!) another night he put huge candy canes on the kids beds, one morning Brandon woke up with red vine licorice all over his blankets! And on Christmas Eve was the biggest shocker of all - he moved our Christmas tree from the front room upstairs to by the fireplace downstairs! Then he left this poem under the tree:

It’s Christmas now and I’m shedding a tear
I won’t come around again until after Thanksgiving next year.
You’ve been good kids, in my heart you are dear
I made sure to put that into Santa’s ear.
I’ll be back for more mischief, more tricks and more fun,
But for this year my spying for Santa is done.
Always remember, I’m not far away,
Because the magic of Christmas can be in your hearts to stay!

(yes, I'm brilliant, I know...) I mean, Ebenezer is brilliant!

Another fun tradition is on Christmas Eve, we make 'magic' Reindeer food. It is basically a cellophane bag with oatmeal and silver, red and gold glitter! Reindeer love oatmeal, but you must add the glitter for magic, and so the reindeer can see it through the snow!

Santa Footprints - we're not sure how he does it, but Santa leaves footprints in the house that look like this! Must be powdered sugar or flour, or something! ;)

Scoping for Santa! We keep the wrapping paper tubes, and the kids decorate them on Christmas Eve and they make great telescopes to watch for Santa in the sky!

One final tradition is that instead of candy in our Advent Calendar, we have a scripture a day. Every night, the kids pull out the scripture, look for it in the Bible or Book of Mormon and we read it as a family. They are all centered around Christ and his birth. It really helps them (and us) remember what Christmas is really about...celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ!
I hope some of these traditions are something new and different that you can do to make your Christmas season even more special! If you have any fun traditions to share, please comment, I would love to hear what they are!!

The 90/10 Rule, Happy 20 and 2008!

I had (another) Dr. appointment this afternoon. Can you say ouch? Without getting too graphic, he had to pull out the surgical scissors and cut some of the old skin and stitches that are separating from the new skin that is slowly forming underneath all the injured areas. This is on my index finger; my middle finger is still too icky to touch. I wanted to be the usual tough girl, but holy cow feeling someone pry sharp metal underneath a huge sore scab and baby sensitive skin and try to separate the two does not feel good! I seriously flinched so hard Eric and the Dr. started to laugh! I started to laugh too and was like, is this REALLY necessary? I mean come ON it will come off on it's own when it's ready, right? Well turns out it really wasn't ready but it was too late so he just cut off part of it. Now on top of everything else I have a chunk of raw skin on my index finger and can see the holes where the stitches were and it's throbbing and stinging so bad I want to scream! Why am I writing all this with my tired left hand? No one wants to read the details of my personal pity party! I just get frustrated after my Dr. appointments - partly because it flares up the pain but also because it makes me face the reality of what happened. BUT...Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% what you do about it. So I'm trying my best to stay positive and do everything extra I can research and think of that speeds healing. I'm even taking these 'magic' herbs (no, not that one, never tried that for the record...) and using a 'magic' cream that supposedly is pretty amazing at how it can help regenerate tissue and stuff...if you know much about herbs you're probably thinking, "I hope it's Dr. Christopher's BF&C...) yes, it is! I'm also still searching for the meaning or message in all of this. If you have any thoughts, by all means let me know. In the meantime, Happy 20-months old to Jane today! She is such a sweet and cute princess and we are so incredibly lucky to have her!