Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Napping With Babies

Pretty sure I've been in this exact same position a few hundred times....


When you live in a 1500 sq ft condo/apartment with no backyard, you miss little things that make life so nice - like soft green grass to play on in the summer. So we head to the park everyday and let the kids roll/run around.
That tiny person is Courtney, who managed to get way too far away from me in less than a minute. I love seeing my children have plenty of free space to explore! But it's a little scary when they all get this far away, in entirely separate directions...
Courtney LOVES wrestling with Brianna. Loves it.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

From Brianna's mouth lately...

-Brianna was complimented on her big pretty necklace by an older lady at the park. She responded- "Thanks, I got it at a yard sale."
-"Oh Bennett, you're adorable. You like it when I bother you."
-"NO Mommy - you CAN'T WIN!!"
-"Courtney and Bennett are doing FINE in my room. You just stay out there."
-"You only have ONE baby, I have TWO babies."  [to her friend Hazel, who has one baby brother]. 
-"Thanks, I'm so glad I'm your mom too"  [after I told her I'm so glad I'm her mom].
-"You know what I call Courtney and Bennett? PooPoo and PeePee. That's right, PooPoo and PeePee."
-"I'm not your mom, Bennett."
-  I asked her how her grapes were. She responded, "they're doing well." 
- "Mom can I be a construction worker when I grow up?"
- "Do you wanna know why I'm crying? I'll tell you if you want to know. Do you want to know? I'm crying because I'M SO TIRED!"
- "Mom that monster killed me and I died AGAIN!"

Favorite Grandchild

In case my cousins/siblings ever read my blog anymore... just wanted you to be made aware who Grandma Smith loves the most. Especially since I stop by and show her cool things like reverse cameras on smartphones.
ps - does this photo make my face look fat?  Or maybe it's just my face that makes my face look fat...

Monday, August 29, 2011

Shopping helpers

I've gone to the store a few times lately with all 3 by myself. I get a little braver each time, and it doesn't seem like such a scary huge deal anymore. I still would muchmuchMUCH rather go solo or just with one child, since we still tend to make a scene and it can be a little embarrassing, but I lost all sense of appropriate public behavior a long time ago. We just go out and get the job done.

Fine Dining

Sent from my Samsung smartphone on AT&T

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Breakfast by Brianna

Miss I-CAN-DO-IT-BY-MYSELF (unless of course I'm busy with the babies and actually NEED her to be independent, in which case she decides to have a tantrum until she gets my attention back) likes to make her own snacks. When I'm not near. I find her climbing the pantry shelves, digging through the fridge, and even using kitchen knives solo to chop things up (scary, but they're about as dangerous as forks. Which are dangerous too, of course - but so are stairs and cars and getting out of bed in the morning).
Here's her latest creation:
Bananas, granola bars unwrapped and chopped up, and random cereal bits. Later on she poured milk on top of all it. And of course left it on the ground under the kitchen table, where the babies turned it into a soggy splash pad. My life consists of buying food, seeing half of it go to waste via kid-messes, then adding more to the grocery list, along with Clorox wipes. Love those things.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


Lasterday (Brianna's latest word - definition: last yesterday) we went to the Salt Lake Bees game, courtesy of Enterprise. We had a great time! Showing off the kids, chatting with the other members of the ERAC Widow-Wives's Club, chowing down on the free food.... I think there might have been some large sporting event going on too, because I heard some loud cheering every now and then.... but I was too busy chatting with people who can empathize with me.   Seriously though, it was a fun family outing. "Work parties" like this help me feel slightly less disheartened with Brian's 70-hour work weeks. (Hint hint, Enterprise management stalking my blog - plan more parties! Like we had in the pre-economy crash days!)
Bennett must have inherited Brian's sports-fan genes. He was very concerned about the game, because of the lack of action. I had to inform him that this is baseball... the most boring sport to watch besides golf. 

On the way home, we had to stop at Walmart to buy Epson ink, because every other place to get it was closed.  Don't you hate how much color printer ink costs?! I need to get a black-and-white only printer.  So there we were at Walmart... around 9pm with 3 little kids, like any good parent... the babies didn't want to be held, so they were running around barefoot... and found produce on the ground and started eating it... so I had to put them in the cart like this, because Brianna was in the front child seat.   And I had the thought - we're going to end up on that trashy People of Walmart website.

Friday, August 26, 2011


Today Brianna randomly asked for NonnyPops.  Nonny (my mom) hasn't visited for months, but she still remembers the treat they make together!

Mom blends up yogurt and fruit (and sometimes sneaks some flax or spinach in there) and pours it into popsicle molds. By the next day, we have delicious frozen healthy treats my kids LOVE  (but can't seem to eat without making a huge mess)

I told Brianna we couldn't make NonnyPops because we didn't have the ingredients. So she went to my desk and got out paper and a pen and said, "Here, make a grocery list. You write it."

Thursday, August 25, 2011

40th Anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Smith

I texted my parents this morning: "Happy Anniversary! I'm glad you got married and didn't just live in sin. Because 40 years is a lot of sinning."

I admire my parent's marriage so much and look to it as an example. After 40 years, they still seem so very much in love. We (meaning their children - specifically Meredith, since she's nosy inquisitive) still find little notes they write each other, catch them sneaking kisses and winking and sharing inside jokes.  They have their own hobbies - Dad still hasn't convinced Mom to get into skiing or biking - but they support each other in everything, and I never hear them speak poorly of each other at all. In fact, one of my favorite memories is hearing my Dad yell at my brothers in his scary voice, "YOU NEVER SPEAK TO YOUR MOTHER THAT WAY!!"   They defend each other and have really worked to keep their marriage strong through all the trials they've faced (and they've had their share!)
I'm so grateful for two parents who love each other and have made it to this big milestone.  They'll be celebrating like any old boring couple....  on the beaches of Maui.....

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Shop for the Merry Glen cause!

I'll be going to Macy's this Saturday, August 27th, to Shop For A Cause. 
 Donate $5 to Merry Glen (where my handicapped sister lives along with 16 other special needs individuals) and you get 25% off almost everything at Macy's! Including clearance! They rarely do coupons this good. PLUS - each store is having a drawing for $500! I'm feeling lucky... that one of my friends who is awesome enough to participate will WIN!   And of course, we ALL win by helping Merry Glen.  

Go to and donate $5.00 to Merry Glen via Paypal, click the "return to Merry Glen Home and School", and you can print your coupon for 25% off - which will also be your entry into the $500 drawing when you use it on Saturday. Your $5.00 donation will support programs at Merry Glen and help their 1973 built home come up to 2011 standards. Thank you and happy shopping!

Watch the sweet video about Merry Glen on their site:   
(I have a 2 second appearance on there - don't blink. And my beautiful, articulate mother does a great interview. And of course, Sammy is the star).

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Lunch at Costco

Not the hot dogs or pizza.... just the free samples!

It actually turns out to be a pretty well-rounded meal... we got raviolis, couscous, cheese cubes, cherries, mango salsa, Dave's Killer Bread (best bread ever), Clif Bars, Kirkland granola bars, juice, and yogurt!

When we move someday, the thing I'll miss most is having Costco right across the street.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Unfair Fair

I know this is a terrible picture.... but since when has that ever stopped me from blogging?!

Brian took Brianna out to the local fair the other night. Just a couple blocks from our house. They had tons of fun - rides, treats, games, face paint, the whole shi-doodle.

And what did I do while they partied all night?


Not fair.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

It'd be funny if it wasn't so true.


10. There are half-full, brightly-colored plastic cups on the floor in every room. Three are in the bathtub.

9. There's always that one girl, bawling her eyes out in a corner.
8. It's best not to assume that the person closest to you has any control over their digestive function.
7. You sneak off to the bathroom knowing that as soon as you sit down, someone's going to start banging on the door.

6. Probably 80% of the stains on the furniture contain DNA.
5. You've got someone in your face at 3 a.m. looking for a drink.

4. There's definitely going to be a fight.

3. You're not sure whether anything you're doing is right, you just hope it won't get you arrested.

2. There are crumpled-up underpants everywhere.
1. You wake up wondering exactly how and when the person in bed with you got there.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Courtney and Bennett have the SAME birthday. Every year. Forever.

This was a bit of a shocker for Brianna. She thought it was very sad that they have to share such a special occasion. 
But I'm thrilled - it's much easier for me! And maybe more fun too. 
Though I'm not big into the whole let-the-baby-dig-through-sugar-and-fat tradition, we definitely enjoyed their one-year commemoration of birth. 
Bennett and Courtney got to do all their favorite things - go down the elevator, go up the elevator, go down the stairs, go up the stairs.... big smiles the whole time. Very easy to please. 
For real though, they're pretty easy-going kids, I think. I mean, I only have Brianna to compare them to, but they seem pretty resilient. They've had a LOT of falls during the past month as they've been learning to walk and climb. They've also put up with a lot of Brianna-harassment. And they've had to learn that crib time means SLEEP time, even if that means ignoring the other's noises. I'm grateful they can roll with the punches. 
I'm also grateful that WE HAVE SURVIVED THE FIRST YEAR!  Can I get a WHOO HOO ?!!?!  All my twin-mom friends say the first year is the hardest! And now it's done! Though I can't imagine having two toddlers is going to be a cake walk. 

Not only have we survived the first year - we've enjoyed a good portion of it. And it hasn't really zoomed by, as is so commonly heard...  but I'm glad I have lots of pictures and video so I don't ever forget what it's been like to have two babies in our home. I love babies. I reallyreallyreally love babies. Every stage is so amazing. I definitely had a favorite stage (after they learned to sit up, but before they learned to really crawl well. So perfect)  but right now is fun too, because I get to teach them puppy-tricks. They love to clap on command, shake their heads, put their arms UP, blow kisses, sign "milk," and chase balls while saying "baw! baw!  
They also have some tricks that I did NOT teach them that they enjoy doing regularly... unplugging cords, dumping out every container possible, throwing food off the table, eating dirt, hiding my cell phone, and banging on computer keys whenever they can seize the opportunity.  
Both lists of tricks - the good and the bad - grow longer every day. 

We've thankfully had a very healthy year. Neither baby has had any real sickness worse than a mild cold. So grateful for that. I think the Lord knew I couldn't handle any more. 
We've had a full year of breastfeeding - no bottles, no pumping. Simple and free. So grateful for that too. I might do a full post just on that, because I feel like it's significant, and not something people talk about much (but should! It doesn't have to be such a tip-toe backdoor topic). I asked Courtney and Bennett if they wanted to wean. They glared, chucked their sippy cups at my head, and signed, "milk." So there ya have it. 
This past year, Courtney was consistently about 2 weeks ahead of Bennett in physical milestones - rolling, sitting, crawling, walking - but now they're both walking very well - no crawling anymore - so we'll see if things even out. It'll be pretty embarrassing for Bennett if Courtney starts doing pushups and 5Ks first. He better start working out.  
According to my scale, Courtney is exactly 19 pounds and Bennett is 20 on the dot. Not exactly heavy weights, but as my sister Meredith said - "they're cute skinny, not sad skinny."  We'll be keeping their car seats facing backwards for awhile still. Not even cuz the AAP recommends it til age 2 - more because it will keep them facing Brianna, who loves to toss toys and snacks at them while we're driving. She's so helpful. 
Sleep. I haven't slept more than like 4 hours at a time in a year now. So I'm living proof that people DO, in fact, NEED sleep to function normally. 
Yes, you read that right.  I'm sure I'd be a much more competent person if I got decent shut-eye. 

But I wouldn't change the way we've handled nights. I know my babies' needs and wants (same thing) have always been met. They've never cried for more than a few minutes (because I do believe in teaching them to fall asleep by themselves. Just in a gentle way). I think it's gradually... very gradually... getting better.  We have a spare adult bed in the babies' room for me to lay down while feeding them if I want to. It gets used. And I don't mind at all. Night time feedings - sometimes tandem - have been the most precious moments with my children. 
Speaking of tandem - a few months ago I balked at the advice that their schedule/routine be synchronized. I mean - they're two different people - how can I expect them to want to eat and sleep at the same exact time every day?! 
Maybe I was right then for that period.  Or maybe I've seen the light now.  They definitely eat and sleep at the same time. And it's lovely. 
ME - after a year, how I do I feel about me?  Sometimes I feel like I'm doing pretty well. Like after I have a great race (won a half marathon last week!) or do something else physically cool. But most of the time I'm honestly pretty depressed/embarrassed about my post-baby body. I mean, my standards are pretty high after all that collegiate-athlete stuff... so it's understandable that I feel frumpy now, comparatively.... I'll always be chasing that 5-15 lb loss, I guess. But I'm grateful that I'm fit enough to do any physical activity I want, and have plenty of energy to take care of my crew. Maybe it would help if I consumed LESS than 3,000 calories/day.  Maybe?
The twins and their daddy...  Brian has really risen to the occasion. He's been so supportive and tireless in almost every way. The man does some seriously long hours at a very demanding job - yet comes home to three kids racing towards him screaming DADDYDADDYDADDY! (or da! da! da!), and somehow finds the energy to get right into father-mode. He LOVES totting them both around at the same time (he likes the public attention, I think) and makes a conscious effort to give them equal QT (which is odd to me, because I never think about that. Keeping things fair?! Ha!)  I made Brian a shirt on CafePress (Groupon!) that says "You can't scare me. I have twins."  It's amazing the things that don't scare us anymore after doing this for a year. But I think all moms could say that in regards to motherhood too, right?
What else... how could I possibly make this post longer  (because everyone likes reading ridiculously long posts, right? Or is anyone even still reading this....)

Oh yes - differences! Very popular question - what are their main differences?
Courtney's a girl.  Bennett's a boy.  That's the main one.
Other than that...  I really can't say. Because every time I make labels, they change their behavior. So it's a waste of time. And my time is very limited these days. But it's also very much enjoyed. Every minute. Except right now, somebody's screaming and yelling. Over a plastic 25 cent toy missing half it's parts, of course. Time to put on my referee hat and take off the birthday hat... because we are DONE with the FIRST YEAR! 
I made a quick video of the birthday posse this morning and uploaded it onto youtube. So veryvery much easier said than done. Hope you enjoy :)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

multi-level venting

At the risk of offending someone, I just have to get this off my mind  (and you know any post that starts out like this is going to be a good one. No boring zoo/pool/park-trip recap today, folks!)

Seriously, is there a big sign on my forehead that says, "Please try to solicit me to join your multi-level marketing company. I'd be awesome at it. Please, exploit our friendship and offer me insincere compliments to get me in your matrix selling my soul off to get others to buy your overpriced products."

There must be. And it must be a big sign. Because it takes both hands and one set of toes to count how many times I've been solicited by an MLMer in just the past half-decade. 

Should I take it as a compliment? People see my personality and characteristics and want their product represented by someone like me?
Or maybe it's a non-compliment. People see me and think I'd make a great mindless minion for their greedy scheme.

I should save myself some time and breath and aggravation and make some business cards that have the word BACKOFF PYRAMID BUILDER! in large letters. Or if I wanted to keep it more light-hearted, "LET'S JUST BE FRIENDS - NO PRODUCTS INVOLVED." 

Now I know all MLMs aren't created equal. But it seems like for so many, the product is really a just window-dressing to divert attention from the real profit-making dynamic: start-up fees and selling the product internally. Or for others, the product creates a religious-level fervor, turning the seller into a crazed zealot. 

I do sincerely adore and respect my friends who are involved with an MLM type company. Most have been totally cool about it - like my friend Kristin. She sells Scentsy candles. Lovely product. She asked me once if I'd do a party. I declined. It was never brought up again. We're still bestest of friends, and I cheer her on in her business endeavors. 

But others - or just one, specifically - is driving me mad with her hypocrisy and pretentious lip service! I hate being the one to unfriend people on Facebook (the explanation for my 900+ list that really needs to be cleaned up) but that might just be what has to happen. Because I've learned - so many times over - I can't change anyone. In general, people rarely change. I can only control my own behavior. And I have a hard enough time doing that! Ha! 

I feel better now. Thank you.  On with conventional commerce!