my van is filled with… liquid gold?

I drove to Costco in the minivan with the empty light on. I had delayed this unfortunate event long enough. It had to be done. I’ve been filling the tank half full to spread the $$ out over pay periods. But since there is no end in sight for high gas prices, I sighed and filled her up. $58.55 later, I choked and drove away. The good side… Costco was 15 cents cheaper than anywhere else. And I guess today I’m grateful I don’t have a suburban to guzzle the gas.

I remember when I was at BYU and I was driving to Logan, I saw gas for $0.99/gallon in Brigham City. I almost took a photo of the price board at Chevrons. But I shrugged it off and figured it would come again. Not so people!

Can we just drill for our own oil on U.S. property instead of buying it from terrorists… already? Ok – maybe that wouldn’t solve the problem… but I think it’s a good idea.

a plug for a *giveaway*

Have you ever read Simple As That blog by Rebecca Cooper? She’s such a cute gal with a darling family. I love all of the SIMPLE ideas she has for photography, crafts, and activities with kids. Plus, her photos are so lovely. All winter I’ve seen her island photos and it reminds me that warmth exists somewhere in the world.

Anyhoo… Rebecca is hosting a fun giveaway for an Ergo Baby Carrier and since I’d LOVE to win, I’m putting in a plug here. Doesn’t hurt, eh? It’s fun to dream of awesome baby items. I’ve used slings before and I love them for when babies are little, but when they start getting heavier, the sling is awkward and hurts my back. I’d love to try this Ergo Carrier since you can carry baby on the front or back. Why do I NEED this carrier? Well… baby #5 with 3 of those under 3. I’m thinkin’ hands free at home… on hikes in the mountains with the fam … on outings with the tots… on walks on the river trail. Pretty much ~awesome!~

Go – check them out now!

… rattled … again … and again

“From the Crossroads of the West,” we’re back with more earthquake news.

Sunday: 2.8 magnitude at 2:30 a.m. woke Jimmy, Me, Hannah, and Abe. Gave us a bit of a fright. Earthquakes are a bit noisy… even these little ones. It takes about an hour for my heart to calm down.

Sunday: 2.8 magnitude at dinnertime. Jimmy’s family was over and they were startled to feel their first earthquake.

So – here we are with 3 micro earthquakes in less than 48 hours… all centered in the same spot (by Walmart and the Dollar store… what does this mean?). I’m not loving that. Jimmy said it’s nice of Heavenly Father to warn us with these little ones. I’m not sure that comforts me. But… we’ll prepare as best we can. Sometimes I don’t know how to be an adult and be responsible for little ones in times of crisis. Please no more earthquakes!!!

“Again we leave you, from within the shadows of the everlasting hills; may peace be with you, this day and always.”

p.s. I watched Music and the Spoken Word for my Sunday services while coughing in bed. What does the shadows of the everlasting hills mean?

that quaking earth!

We were just putting the tots to bed, when the whole house did shake, shake, shake. So fast, but alarming to all. It was only a 2.5… and I can’t imagine how anything stronger or longer would feel. I think my heart is still racing an hour later. It does look like it was centered exactly where our neighborhood is.

The last earthquake we felt was a 2.9 on Jan 5, 2010 in the middle of the night. It was centered in Saratoga Springs.

I guess whenever we have little warnings like this, it puts my mind in emergency-prep mode. Are we prepared enough to be able to care for 4 littles in a big disaster? Ay-ay-ay! Now, that is one of those HARD things I’m not sure I’m ready for. But… “with God, all things are possible.” Prepare we shall… as best we can… and have faith in the Lord to watch over us all.


Perhaps it’s because today was a killer, and perhaps y’all will just have to ignore me and my random thoughts… but I just was thinking about this throughout the day.

Last night I was chatting with some friends about how sometimes we assume the moms around us are Wonder Woman… with everything put together in life in their perfect little home and tidy children, etc.  BUT… in reality, most are just plugging along with individual struggles… doing their best, but not doing all the AMAZING things at the same time.  Yes, doing AMAZING here and there, but it’s not possible to do it ALL … all the time.

Today my AMAZING was getting the dishes semi-done.  That was a task, I’ll tell ya.  Another AMAZING was attempting to help Hannah clean up her barf-bowl (4 times) while keeping Tru out of the way (practically impossible).  Plus, I made dinner… AMAZING (though not very tasty).  Other days AMAZING is really… well, more AMAZING. And it’s funny how my view of AMAZING changes in different stages of life … or even week-to-week.

The NOT-SO-AMAZING was when Abe cried when I explained that even though I want to sit and listen to him read in peace and quiet for an hour, it’s not always going to happen without interruption.  The other NOT-SO-AMAZING was my attitude about the 4 completely nasty diapers I changed.  Please tell me other homes smell like poop on those blessed days.

A neighbor of 2 little ones was asking me for parenting advice for her little 2-year-old.  I honestly had no ideas.  I’m definitely not the hero of parenting.  Plus every child is so different and every parent is so different.  Anyhoo…  she commented that my kids were so good and obedient.  I chuckled.  Yes, my kids have WONDERFUL moments…. and they are overall pretty good tots.  BUT I told her to come join us for FHE or family scripture study to get the real scoop.  Half the family is either in tears, slouching, growling, or running around in chaos.  But we try… and we keep going with it.

So – what is my point of all this random blah?  I guess I just think I need to appreciate the little things I accomplish that are good each day instead of feeling bad about all that didn’t get done (a hard one for me).  I need to just be glad when Jimmy helps so much instead of feeling bad that I need help to keep afloat.  And I think I can’t always assume that I’m the only mom who struggles.  We all need each other, don’t we?  I find comfort and strength in knowing that I’m not the only mom ploughing through … and that other moms have endured well those challenging days… even if that means serving breakfast for supper. :)

Our lil' fam - 2004

A Cozy Winter

Last summer the theme was “A Colorful Summer”.
In the fall I chose, “A Joyful Autumn”.
We’re now on “A Cozy Winter.”
Even though with our drafty windows, I feel like wintertime is anything but cozy…. mostly I feel like calling it a chilly or dreary winter… but we’re aiming for positive, eh? Plus, I love this quote about how winter is a time for comfort, home… and I would add FAMILY.
I have oodles of pages to catch up on, but I’m still loving this simple format to summarize each week. When I take time on Sunday night to put it together, it helps me recognize the good in our week.
Despite all the sickness we’ve had around here this week, I can still say I love my Beautiful, Ordinary life. We are blessed.


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Jimmy Smith