Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thankful I am!

Dad has a Thanksgiving tradition: Each of us go around the table and say one thing that we are thankful for. I am always touched by the emotion that backs the gratitude expressed. Most of the time I hear words of Thanks for Family and spouses. And I am ever so grateful for these things: To the tune of the inability to adequately express myself verbally.
This year, however, I find myself with Thanksgiving for my (not so) little brother, Jake. For his life and sacrifices, for his determination to keep going and for his ability to hike and triumph over trial. We all have learned about life's hardships. It is a part of our purpose to be here. Some will wallow in their pity. Others will accept defeat. While still there are those who will pretend or even lie about there even being a trial at all. It is He who squares up or stares down that which is difficult and overcomes each bump in the road that is the most impressive to me. Persistence can not cope with failure. And for that reason coupled many more, Jake is undoubtedly, heroic to me in every way. Sure love you buddy.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, September 27, 2010

My favorite pass time

So here is the truth...
My very favorite sport is running.... just slightly more favorite than swimming. My favorite swim buddy is Barbie. My favorite running buddy is my i-pod. And My favorite race is the Ragnar Wasatch Back. HANDS DOWN! Before running was cool I still loved it! The fact is that when I was in the 5th grade I had to run the "wellsville MIle" for school. When I was finished I heaved in the bathroom for 3 minutes straight. But I felt really cool when I got a certificate stating that I finished in the top half of the school. I was hooked! TOTALLY HOOKED!
I am the middle child of 6. My brother older than me kept my mother hoppen'! My brother 1 1/2 years younger than me was my side kick... we kinda kicked it through life flying under the radar! It is the best place to be in my humble opinion. We had twin baby sisters that pretty much took up the rest of the time. So... when mum decided to take up running for a stress relief I hooked up as her pacer! That really did seal the deal for me. I have the most fond memories from long runs with my mother. Everywhere I went I ran. Never, not ever, walking!
In junior high and high school I ran and ran. When I went to College I ran even more. Sometimes I even still dream of some of those long runs that I went on every day. When I do, I actually smell the mountains in my dream... and see the colors of leaves. And when I wake up I have that endorphin feeling that I just ran. Its kinda trippy!
After Cole was born I took a little running sabbatical. More like a long sabbatical! I didn't run for a looooooong time. Life got "too busy". I didn't exercise at all! YIKES! But somewhere in there a friend of mine knew that I once loved running so she invited me to be on her Ragnar team. That race story is not so beautiful! I was over weight, out of shape and sick with a parasite on race day. I ran 13 miles and thought I would die. But the experience woke me up. So I vowed to do it again under better circumstances.
This summer I ran my second Ragnar. I have never had so much fun at any race in my life... and I've run my share! My team. The cause. The entire lead up to that event... It was incredible! And so I challenge anyone who loved something so much but put it on the shelf to pull that something down and dust it off... and rekindle that love that you have. I know I have.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sunday, July 18, 2010

So the week did get better...

Cole took 2 days to recover. TWO! Not a 24 hour bug. But as soon as he did we were ready for some fun with the cousins.

The entire time Coley was sick Brogan had to play with Braige and McKay... which isn't a bad gig unless you don't enjoy climbing trees. Braige and McKay were in a tree nearly the entire trip! Don't get me wrong... I think Brog and Coley enjoy a good tree climb as much as the next guy, but they don't go to the top of huge trees. And Braige and McKay climb trees like Mowgli. All. Day. Long.

Our first stop after Coley was well was at Grandpa and Grandma Mecham's house. Aunt Betty was in town... we felt extra lucky! It was raining and frigid outside so the kids quickly found Papa Nate's old toys in the den and put them to work... until they remembered how cool the upstairs mini closets are... That was the end of them!
We saw Karate Kid. We watched a few ball games with the cousins! Boy those kids know how to play ball!!! We even hung out at the Mella's house while Gordon had knee surgery! And while there Jessica informed me that she is NOT a fan of people asking her how she is feeling! Under no circumstances is one to ask that question... even though, in my humble opinion, it is exactly what you would ask somebody you love and care about if you were truly concerned!

Curtis introduced the kids to snow shack. Every night after dinner he and the kids would head out to snow shack and then to the park or toilet papering or light up the night with "barely legals" fireworks. He is so fun! My kids wish he was their parent!
We moved from Curt and Marja's house to Merilee and Loran's basement apartment at the end of the week. It is nice and cool down there and it was made up perfectly! It was sparkling clean with tidy beds when we walked through the door... and then we trashed it with all of our stuff!

It was so fun to see the family again! We have super fun cousins!

Nate joined us one week after we got to Utah... On the day we originally planned on going up...
Just in time for Ragnar!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Documentation of the beginnings of our UTah Trip...

When my dad called to tell me that Aunt Tammy died I knew we needed to head off to Utah for her funeral. Uncle Steve needed support. I had a few obstacles to overcome before I left.
1) McKay was scheduled for cub scout day camp. (getting your son out the door in the afternoon for day camp is a small victory all on its own.)
2) being gone for 3 weeks meant bills must be looked over and paid for the entire month.
3) mountains of laundry need to be processed.
4) and packed (4 people + 3 weeks = lots of packing)
5) girls camp was 3 days away and I had to delegate ALL my responsibilities there. (if you tried to call me on those days you couldn't get through because I was delegating camp responsibilities)
6) wasn't ready for girls camp.
7) visit teaching...
8) Young Women information being passed from my brain to the amazing people that ran the young women's program of the Lazona ward while I was gone! THey are the BEST!
9) I was the Ragnar (Running4nie) team capt'n and I had a meeting to call and organization was still necessary before we met in Logan, Cache County, UTah at the start line. (That was the funnest race I've ever run!)
10) organize travel plans adding another week...

needless to say... I was a little bit busy for a few days.... and nights...
I knew it would be worth it!
Finally the day came. I fit all preparations in by the skin. of. my. teeth.
I even packed a cooler so that we wouldn't have to stop for food making our trip faster! No stopping for food would mean only 10 hours of travel. We were leaving @ 4:00a.m. making it completely possible to get to the viewing by 6:30 p.m., even adding an hour for time differences, there would be time to spare! I finished all of my duties at 3:00 a.m. which left 1 hour to shower and get dressed before dad and mom picked me up.
And dad was driving so I could sleep...
Our drive up was as eventful as the previous week!
Dad behind the wheel + in a hurry + Becky sleeping sitting up = neck injury.
Lisa and mom were caravan-ing with us in Lisa's go cart.
Her love bug couldn't handle the land speeds dad was trying to set. But we only had a short wait in Flagstaff before they caught up. The wheel well fell off somewhere between Page and Kanab, making quite the noise, which nearly gave mom a heart attack. We were too far ahead and the phone services didn't work on the rez. So in a nut shell... Lisa and Mum were left to fix the car noise on the side of the road by themselves.
Lisa says insert mum's hyperventilation here.
Mum says insert Lisa McGuyver and shoe string here.
Mean while we ripped into Kanab.
We stopped at the gas station to wait for the go cart to catch up.
And that is when my cell phone got services.
The text came through which read,
"HELP" sent by mum's cell phone.
Dad began to pace... out on the highway.
I called mum's phone which was just coming into service.
She explained the whole wheel well thang falling off and her trying to flag somebody down and how we drove too fast and she thought death was eminent and how we would never get there on time and that Lisa found a shoe string in her new $90.00 (on sale) shoes and tied the wheel well together and they were now almost to Kanab.
what? Lisa has shoes that cost $90.00? Why haven't I borrowed them? Wait... shoestring is holding Lisa's car together?
And indeed it was.
And it did! All the way to SLC, UT and back to Mesa, AZ. Who knew?
In Beaver we stopped again to top off the tank.
Good thing we did.
The threads were poking through my rear tire.
It was a miracle the whole tire hadn't blown apart during dad's reckless drive!
So we got a little tire changed and Chevron made $120.00. OUCH!
And then Lisa got in my car so that Dad could bring relief to our Mum.
That is when we got the giggles playing a car game with Bailey.
I almost wrecked the van cuz I couldn't see through my teary eyes.
14 1/2 hours later we rolled into American Fork and found refuge at the Damons.
Bless them!
And Marja had whipped up a chicken salad croissant and some fruit for us to wolf down before we left for the viewing (which we were NOW late for).
Bless her!
(This is Marja. She and her sister Merillee are the bestest hostesses known to planet earth!
I love them!)
The kids stayed with Marja. They had enough of car time... and besides they were going to sit through the long hours of funeral the next day.
We made it to our viewing. It was as sad as a viewing could be. And we found lots of comfort in our faith and family... LOTS!
When I got home late that evening everything was beautifully in control!
Marja has a super clean house... even with all our junk strung around!
The kids were Ultra happy!
Uncle Curtis was deemed "the funnest" person alive and carries the title still today!
He took the boys toilet papering.
That is a good story for a post another day!
And all was well.
We found comfortable slumber quickly.
Until 2:30 a.m. when the bedroom door flung open and muffled under heaves and splatters Marja informed me that Cole was sick!
The sickest throw ups he ever experienced in his blessed 6 years of life.
And it continued all through the night and on into the next entire day.
So we didn't make it to Aunt Tammie's funeral after all.
And that was just the first 24 hours of our trip to UTah...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Home sweet home

We took ourselves a little trip... We had planned on a 10 day vacation to Utah with extravagant plans of playing with cousins, running a race, playing with cousins, hiking a trail or two, playing with cousins, possibly visiting Bear Lake, playing with cousins and eating AGGIE ice cream while playing with cousins.
It turned into a LOOOONG vacation!
Aunt Tammy died unexpectedly.
Tragic, actually.
And so we piled in the family wagon a week earlier than we expected and headed North. She lived in Salt Lake City... the heart of our vacation spot!
So our 10 day trip turned in to a 17 day trip.
As we were packing all our memories into the storage spaces of our mind, to retrieve throughout the year, mom called...
Grandma died unexpectedly.
Well, she was 88.
She had dementia.
But she was kicken' strong without a mind.
And so we unpiled the family wagon and extended another week. She lived her life in Salt Lake City.... though she had spent the last few years in Arizona soaking in the sun and enjoying the heat. But her heart was always at home in good old Utah.
We stayed an extra week for her funeral which was right before July 4... which granted "holiday pay" and made it so that we extended the vacation for an entire month.
Wow. Vacation for an entire month!!!
It was incredible.
The thought of Home Sweet Home really does exist.
Really! It does.
But as soon as I step outside... that thought escapes!
May I echo every neighbor and soul who puts up with the AZ desert heat?
p.s. Dear Monsoons,
Please come quickly.
We are wilting.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Catch up post

sit tight! I've got some catchen' up to do. This past month has BLOWN by! WOWzers... But it isn't forgotten.

These little peeps played a whole lot of soccer! Between practice and games I have the best excuse for not journaling in a month! Games are over. However, baseball has begun!!! And swim team registration is in less than a month! The kids love their sports... and Cole loves the treats afterwards. (nice chip)

The day before spring break started we had a little upset. The dinner conversation was very exciting indeed! Bailey informed her father that Zach (at school) made big plans to kiss his girlfriend. They are in the 5th grade! So the whole 6th grade class found out about it and followed Mr. Zach to greet his little lady after class. His plan was not only to kiss her... but to kiss her on the LIPS! "DID YOU HEAR ME?" "I SAID KISS HER ON THE LIPS!"

Nate told Bailey to stay away from Zach. "He's trouble!"

Mum and Dad celebrated another wedding anniversary. Those NEVER get dull! Can you imagine how awesome it is going to be when you can say that you've been married for 50 years?! Cool. By the time you are at that stage of the marriage it is REAL bliss! You are seasoned, trained, Wise, Comfortable and truly one. I'm looking forward to that.

Spring Break Week...

Oh the fun!!!

We ran LOOOOOOOOOTS!!! getting ready for this little race! In fact we calculated nearly 25 miles. Papa Nate has to add a few miles for all the times he lapped me.

Monday: The zoo

Tuesday: St. Patrick's day.

Green breakfast tradition. Even Papa came home from work for green waffles!

Wednesday and Thursday: We prepared for baseball season to begin and played with friends.

After purchasing the proper little man protection I found Coley and Co. playing "doggy" with the jockstrap/cup packaging! They dumped fishy crackers into each side and licked them out. McKay and Bailey we somewhere outside for the entire week!!!

should it concern me that Cole is completely comfortable with the fact that his baseball cup is on the floor next to him and his friends of the female gender? Never mind that he treated them to fishy crackers out of jockstrap container!

Friday: Hike with cousins... Desert in Bloom.

Saturday: Garden harvest and more planting.

Sunday: Church and BBQ with the family in the park.

The weather has been incredible!!!

A week back to school and life resumed back to laundry, chores, and schedules. Now we prepare for April break, Cole's birthday and Easter.

Part of Easter tradition for us is the spiritual feast of the Easter Pageant. GO! It is incredible!! ALWAYS amazing!!! This year was no different.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Love is in the air...

Today the kids had Valentine's parties at school. They traded Valentine's cards and candy... It reminded me of years past when I was trading Valentine's at school:
One year... long ago... I received a Valentine from a little boy in my class (elementary school) who confessed that I was "HIS" valentine. He gave me a white bear with a love note. There was no hiding the fact that I got a stuffed bear while everyone else got a paper heart. I got teased until by the end of the day I hated my bear... and even worse, I hated the idiot who gave it to me! But when I got home mum gave the same advise she always did:
"those other kids are just jealous. Don't let them bother you."
For some reason I believed that mum of mine. I grew up thinking kids made fun of me because they were either jealous of me or that they were having troubles at home. Surely there was nothing wrong with me! BOY HOWDY! And to be real honest... there might have been, but I didn't know it and mum wouldn't let me believe it! And so it turned out that the little bear did get to have a home in my toy box... (even if I didn't EVER play with it!)
Today during the 5th grade class party (I was helping at) Alen was vocally hopeful that my Bailey would win a game when Zac teased them.
"you just like her... she's your Valentine."
Now two funny things happened when I heard this:
1) I thought about pinning Mr. Zac against the bulletin board and interrogating him about what in the world could be wrong at home?
(2) then I decided, Na... He's just jealous.
Golly! Mum was right... Some things just never change!
(In case I don't get around to it on Sunday... )
Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Wait... What is his plan?

Might I preface this post by saying that most of the hard questions my kids ask me are answered by "that is Heavenly Father's way of..." And so this was no different...After a hard night of croupy coughs and Cole swearing that he was having a near death experience by the size of the goober in his throat, we drove to Dr. Ciminello's office. After we were all checked in and awaiting to actually be seen, I explained that Cole would not only have to show the Dr. his throat but also show him his arm pits because they had been rashly a few days earlier. Oh... and also the little groin triangle... that was rashly too!
Cole: "um I am NOT (with emphasis!) lifting up my shirt. He will see my bare tummy."

Mom: "what about all the people who see your tummy when you swim?"

Cole:"I wear swim shirts mom... people don't see my bare tummy".

Mom: "well you'll also have to show him your groin".

Cole: "that's fine. but not my tummy."

moment of silence while mom reads on in the National Geographic...
Cole: "what a groin?"

Mom: "That is where your rash was down by the private parts, Cole."

Cole: "Oh geez! I am NOT (with more emphasis and an escape planning) pulling down my pants! You don't me MY privates, right?!"

Mom: "Doctors see these things all day! They have to or they can't diagnose you properly!"

Cole: "well then I'm going to be sick forever! Would you pull down your pants for the Dr?"

And so I gave my answer about 20 seconds of thought and then decided... what the heck! He's 5 he'll never get it!
Mom: "Um yes... I've had 3 babies Cole! Where do you think they come from?"

Cole: "Mom, I said your pants, not your shirt... but I'm not doing that either."

Silence. Never mind that I'm trying not to noticeably laugh over the sincerity and critical nature of these concerns...
Cole: "Where do babies come from?"

Mom: "well, Heavenly Father's plan to get his children from their mom's uterus to daylight isn't out the belly button Cole."

Thinking time.... silence....
Cole: "You're not saying?..." funny face.... "Bailey was right!"

Later on that night when we got home Cole remembered to let the kids in on the little education he had at the dinner table.
Cole: "do you know what Heavenly Father's plan to get the babies out of mom's tummy is?"

McKay... chokes on his food.

Bailey... "Please don't bring it up Cole."

Cole: "So mom, why did he have that plan anyway?"

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Don't forget to Pray

Don't forget to include a few extras in your much needed prayers today...

Dear Nie and Mr. Nielson,

My best of wishes to you during the neck reconstruction. My wish is that the pain will be minimal, the results will exceed your expectation and that your recovery will be quick. And may the blessings of heaven be with you and yours through it all.

I promise to drop off Chocolate cup cakes with extra frosting while you are in AZ... don't feel like you must come to the door, just know they're from me... (Because eating chocolate helps everyone recover?!)



Wednesday, January 6, 2010

She woke up a whole year older

It's Bailey's Birthday again!
Why do they keep coming? Her father and I had the most disturbing conversation ever last night...
Bailey is 11... which means that in less than a decade she won't live in my house any more. It means I won't wake up to her sunny, spunky self everyday. It means that when we are sick at the same time I won't have anyone to lie next to me in bed and laugh even though our bellies feel like something out of a horror movie. This makes me not happy... and so I will think of something else.This is one of my favorite pictures of Bailey. One of about 10 trillion favorites!
Today when we awoke to Grandma Chrissy and Grandpa Konks morning "happy birthday" duet I took the phone to a sleeping Birthday girl and nearly fell over when I walked into the room to see such a large child in the bed that I am certain I tucked my little sweet pea into last night. "Oh BOY!" I shouted! "She grew up!" I considered the conversations over the past few months. They've gone from beginning with "mommy" to "mom". They've transformed into actual conversations like I have with friends. The questions have moved from "will you get me a cup of water?" to "so, when can I have a cell phone?" and for Christmas instead of asking for toys we've moved into the lists of clothes, technology, music and stylish boots. Where did the time go? People told me the day she was born, "don't blink! or you'll miss her life." I took that very seriously... but it still has FLOWN by!
When I asked Bailey what she would like for her birthday she started telling me that the girls at school call her "a girly girl". "What does that mean?" I inquired. Then with a sad expression she started in on this crazy story about how if she wears clothes, other than jeans and t-shirts, that the girls classify you as a "girly girl". "Is that bad?" I asked. "After all, you are a girl!" Then she said that her favorite color was 'pink and nobody else likes pink'. It was a concern weighing heavy on her shoulders. What does a mom say to a girly girl who loves pink that is feeling peer pressure to wear jeans and t-shirts in other colors? Trying to think back to those days I realized that I was a TOM BOY! My mother made me wear the girliest Gunny sack lace dresses she could find, curled my hair every Sunday (much to my dismay) and was adamant that I clog because she was so concerned about my dream to be buried in my jeans (with the lions on the pocket) and "E.T. loves River Heights Elementary School" t-shirt and cleats! It bothered her that she found cracked baby bird eggs in my pockets and that all my friends were neighborhood boys who loved playing tackle football and soccer all day and night with me. I hated pink. If it wasn't yellow it wasn't a color. And if the pants weren't made of denim they shouldn't be worn! And t-shirts... bless them! But I couldn't say that to her... And so I told Bailey to tell the girls, "I can't help but to be a girly girl! My mother is one. My aunts are and my Grandma's love fashion! And pink is our signature color! It is the very symbol of girl!" "anyway", I said, "when you go to another school where fashion is allowed people will dress different. and... and when you grow up those mean kids aren't even going to be around. It's going to be you and cousin Ellie (who is a Fashion Goddess) and the two of you are going to shop and hang out so none of this will matter. Just hold on for now!" And that must have sufficed her... because she then said, "okay! then for my birthday I would like perfume and lotion with sparkles in it and a new dress with tights and then maybe you could take me for a facial."
Ummmm.......... What happened to barbies?
HaPpY bIrThDaY bAiLeY!
I love everything about you... except that you keep growing up! But even then I can think of a zillion reasons why its going to be great to have you big as it was to hold you in my arms when you were oh soooo small.
I sure love you lady.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Sit down... its a whole month long!

We do not take the month of December lightly around these parts... It is one celebration after another! And so it went like this:
Dad's birthday... we will start there since I think that was the last time I documented much! It was a delight. He is now older. And wiser! And we ate cake.
Then Ellie Buns had a birthday. I want to dress like Ellie when I grow up. She is the fashion Diva! And Santa came to her birthday princess party! And he brought her every fairy tale barbie his elves ever made. ONE LUCKY DIVA! we ate cake.

Mum had a birthday. We had soup divine to heat our bones before we gathered at the temple lights to a marvelous display of Christmas! WOW! SO fun. Mum got a year older. And wiser! She is my twin (only separated by birth). And to go with the cake that we ate, I got a double chin for this picture!

The kids did a little Christmas choir concert for their parents. It was beautiful other than the fact that people have absolutely NO CONCERT MANNERS anymore. It is one of my soap boxes. You might see me in the news one day for some insane act on stupid people. (New Year's resolution #1: Don't do an insane act on stupid people.) Bailey loves the choir. She will sing her heart out one day! McKay will sing because I told him to. But he isn't in love with it yet! And you may find Cole singing his heart right out next to Bailey's. He loves his kindergarten sing!

We enjoyed the rain so much we played in it all day long! Please send more! It didn't even stop these little monkeys from target shooting the Halloween pumpkin that still isn't rotten.

Here is baby face #1 from Grandma and pa's Christmas spectacular! Is that so cute? I will eat him!
And here is baby face #2 from Grandpa and ma's Christmas spectacular. I will lick him like a peppermint pop since that is what is all over his sweet little face. FYI: This child is an exact re-make of my little (but not so any more) brother. INSIDE AND OUT! love him!!
Mum and pa had the Christmas party ornament exchange! Boy howdy... it was divine. We re-enacted Luke II (which is so fun with little people.) And then the spirit went straight out the door when Santa "ho ho hoed" his Jolly old self right into the middle of our party! He handed out gifts (BEFORE CHRISTMAS! WOW). And then Grandma sat on his beard and it came off! And then she lifted her buttocks cheeks so that Santa could put it back on. I think he must have been a helper. McKay says you can tell if he's a helper by his shoes. Because real Santa wears boots but helpers wear black Sunday shoes and leather looking leg warmers over them. Whatever?!
Then Aunt Tisha took all the boy cousins to Freestone Park to race frogs. They were in Boy heaven... HEAVEN! Playing with frogs and racing them. Good times. We took the frogs back to the pet store when they were done. No where to store them! When we got there we found out that they shouldn't be handled without gloves because they are toxic. WHAT?!
I made Jelly with Leslie. It was one of the funnest things I did this season. It was a gift she really wanted to give to her mother. Jelly, not jam, because her mother can't eat seeds but loves strawberries. And so Leslie saved all year to give such a gift from her heart. And it touched mine.
3 little people ready for slumber in their new Christmas Jammies on the Eve of His birth... And yes, it is a tradition that we share with 10 million other people to get new pjs on Christmas eve.
But slumber was not found before cookies, milk, and a little request was set out for Old St. Nick... Who did (indeed) stop by our house and graciously remembered the Mecham children.
Coley requested a bb gun like McKay's. And though you might think Santa is more responsible than that to give such a young child a gun, you are dead dog wrong! He delivered. (you know you just said, "you'll shoot your eye out kid".) And since everyone that heard of Cole's gift from Santa has said that to him so far, we now tell people that Coley got Legos. Because that is one of his other gifts. McKay got Madden 10. He was in Wii heaven all day! And the next... and still is! HOURS of fun! We haven't used the wii this much since Grandpa-great and Grandma Della delivered it last Christmas!
Bailey got Taylor Swift C.D... much requested... for her to sing along with. She is my favorite girl.
And the month didn't stop with Christmas, as know... Because then we struck up energy celebrate the NEW YEAR! And we rose the roof over there. BOY HOWDY... I haven't laughed so hard in the whole year. Those Lindbloms are fun people!
HaPpY nEw YeAr!