I got a phone call this morning from my brother, informing me that he had a "bone to pick" with me. Apparently he was not a fan of my last post in which he claimed that I alluded to his inability to get a date.

That was not my intent at all.

In fact, I believe him to be quite datable. Were I not married, and related to him, and older than him, I might just be tempted to date him myself.

I did intend, however, to point out that as of now, I do not forsee a marriage date in the near future. And that could just be me.

My brothers, you see, are two very different creatures. And that is the way it has always been. While Grant would barely admit that girls existed (I'm sure that he was well aware of them, but not interested in discussion), Jon would come curl up on my bed to have "girl talk." Even after I moved out I was usually aware of Jon's current girl situation (as updated by him), and would have to virtually pull teeth to get anything out of Grant.

So seeing Jon married in the next three years would not at all surprise me, and I'll expect to be fully up to date on any and all relationships, while I wouldn't be shocked if I get Grant's wedding announcement in the mail without any warning.

So, Grant, it does make things a little hard to predict.


Apparently I can do no right. I just got a call accusing me of sullying Jon's good name. . . oh man. And since he's not available to protect himself, Grant's roommate had to do the job. I guess I just can't win.

Either way, I love both of my brothers. :)


Happy Beginning and Sad Ending

This morning, five years ago, I awoke early, did my makeup, had my hair done, picked up my fiancé and drove (rode, actually: my parents were driving) to the temple. We were a little late, but we had plenty of time to sign all the official paperwork before being married. And at 1:30 pm, were were married, not just until "death do you part" or "as long as you both shall live," but for eternity.

And that was the birth of our family. As we have added children one by one, they too are bound to us by the covenants we made to God and each other five years ago today.

Such a joyous beginning.

And now for the sad ending.

This summer had been one of sisters, brothers, cousins and fun. But as of today it is all over. Sarah and her family are on an airplane as we speak, winging their way across the sea to live in Japan for three whole, depressing years.

Grant left last week, and while I'll miss him, he'll be back at Christmas. And just knowing he's only in Utah is much more reassuring than trying to imagine my sister in Okinawa. I know Utah. I can picture it. I've been there. Okinawa? Not so much. The most I've seen of that is Karate Kid 2. I can't picture where they are, what they're doing. And that makes it so much harder.

Sure, we can talk. Sure, we can "Skype." And sure, they might even come back for Jon's wedding.

(And Grant's, if he gets around to it)

(And no, that's not an announcement. Jon is not any more engaged than he was when he left on his mission.)

But they're gone.

And I already miss them.


a little heart to heart

{I obviously need to take more pictures: this one is from the fourth of July.}

Because Sweet Lou's heart is not something I can really see an outward manifestation of how it's doing, I never quite know what to expect. However, I was thrilled to hear her cardiologist say:

"Irrespective of what I see on the ultrasound next time, I think she's made enough progress that we won't need to close this hole right away. I'd like to give it a chance to close on its own." (This is a paraphrase, since I wasn't recording the appointment.)

The EKG looked similar to the last one, and the murmur "sounded" smaller. We didn't do an ultrasound this time, but will in two months. All in all, it was good news.

At her next check-up in mid-October, we will determine if she can make it through the flu season on her own, or if she'll need help. Babies with heart problems are more susceptible to things like RSV and pneumonia, and they like to avoid that at all costs. Depending on the size of the hole, the doctor may recommend that she get a vaccine for RSV, which consists of four muscular shots. That doesn't sound fun, but it doesn't sound terrible either, until he mentioned that each shot is about $1200. He said she's borderline now, so it will all depend on the progress made in the next two months.

What amazes me is how God knows what he's doing. While I didn't appreciate it at the time, it's a good thing that Louie was born so big. Because of her heart, she's gained less than 7 lbs since birth. If she had been an average or small baby, she would be unhealthy now, but since she started at nearly 10 lbs, she's still close to 50th percentile.

No matter what happens, I know that I have a loving heavenly Father who is watching out for my little girl, and whatever happens will be for the best.

{If you're just tuning in, click here for previous updates.}


Good for a laugh

My brother Grant is a bit of a crack-up. I pretty much laugh more than half the time I'm around him. For an example of his hilariosity, please click here and read his guest post on my sister's blog.

And laugh.


Sweet Success

I've had a couple people ask how my dessert-free July went and if I was able to make it. And I've been able to say

YES! It went great.

But don't worry, I still love me some chocolate. And ice cream. And cookies. And, and, and...

I think that July was the perfect month for this experiment for several reasons.

First, there were only three occasions where dessert was offered, and none of them were anything super amazing. I had no reason or excuse to be making birthday cakes, celebratory cookies, or anything of that nature.

Second, at least at the end of the month, it was bloody hot. There was no way in heaven that I was going to turn on the oven to bake dinner, let alone dessert.

Third, there was fresh fruit in abundance and variety. I don't generally consider myself a lover of fruit because apples, bananas and oranges (basic fruits that we almost always have around) just do not excite me. I'll eat them, but they're not my favorite. But during the summer when there are cherries, watermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, blackberries, pineapple, etc. cheap and available, I'm in heaven. And my sweet tooth was mostly satiated.

So now I'm back to eating dessert, but I can tell I need to set a limit (daily, weekly, something) so that I don't revert to my previous ways.


Can somebody please explain this?

Sometimes I just don't get it. Life just doesn't make sense.

Like in high school, I wore makeup everyday. And not just eye makeup like I do now, but full-on concealer, foundation, powder, blush--the works. And I never washed my face. I mean, I would rinse the makeup off in the shower, but I didn't shower everyday, and I went to bed with makeup on nearly every night.

And I had perfect skin. (So I'm really not sure why I was wearing so much makeup in the first place--teenagers, bah!)

Then I got to college, and realized that makeup was way too much effort and stopped wearing so much, and less often. I'd like to say that I started washing my face regularly, but that would be lying.

And I broke out like nothing else. In fact, there was a while where one side of my face was so riddled with bumps that I looked like a before and after picture for some acne treatment. We even drew a line down my face and took a picture, though not with my camera, so I don't have a copy, or I'd share. (Lisa, if you have one, feel free to send it my way.)

Wouldn't it make sense to have better skin when I put less junk on it?

Another, more current situation.

I had braces, like many of you, I'm sure. And while I brushed my teeth at least once a day all through high school (you really can't go to school without brushing your teeth if you want people to talk with you), I flossed, like, never. Even after I got the braces off, I still never flossed.

And I never had cavities.

Since I got married nearly five years ago, I've only skipped flossing twice. Or maybe three times, I'm not really counting. And I brush my teeth way better than I did in high school, but I just got back from the dentist yesterday, and I get to go back next week to have not one, not two, but three cavities filled.

Yes, they are small. And yes, one is actually to replace one of those lovely metal fillings that I've had since before I can remember. But really? Cavities? Why now?

If someone could shed some light on this conundrum, I would really appreciate it.