Friday, January 29, 2010

It is what it is

I'm rarely primped and coiffed by kindergarten drop off time. On a normal day I am woken by Jemma before the sun comes up. I moan. Nic goes and gets her and potato sacks her to me. I nurse her and try to sleep. Afton then wakes up at an unholy hour and comes and stares at me. I can hear her breathing through her nose. I can feel her breath on my face. I pretend to sleep. I'm getting pretty good at the subtle fake snore and at not squinting my eyes. Once Jemma starts whispering "ta- ta" and "dee- dee", I know my gig is up. Soon will come the face patting, nose pinching and head butting. Rise and shine.

My mom always tells me that there are keys to successful mommyhood. A couple of these keys include doing at least one load of laundry a day and getting up way before your kids do. I know it's possible because I see the other moms at school show up with a fresh blow-out or damp pony tails. They manage somehow.

I pour cereal and gather backpacks in my p.j.'s. I dress and comb and herd children from room to room. "Did you go pee pee?" "Did you eat all your food?" "Uh-oh, we only have ten more minutes" "You can't wear your snow-suit". "No, you don't need your snow boots." "Yes, I promise you Friday is and has always been a school day".

Two minutes before departure, I take the stairs two at a time and find my clothes that are rumpled accordian style on the floor next to my bed. Exactly where I left them the night before. I always have a fleeting thought of, will the moms notice this is what I wore yesterday? As an afterthought I pull Nic's hoodie we bought on our honeymoon off of a hanger and throw it over yesterday's shirt. Perfect disguise! I look in the mirror and use my knuckles to scrape yesterday's mascara crumbs out from under my eyes. I tell myself, "I gotta get up earlier!"

Drop off, kisses, waves, "See you in a couple hours!" "Run! Don't look back!"

When I got home this morning, Jemma was ready for her nap. I took her upstairs and rocked her. I know when she is asleep because she breaks into a sweat just like her dad. This morning's sleep sweat warmed up her face, turned her cheeks pink and made her smell of the maple syrup I hadn't cleaned off of her face yet. I layed her in her bed. One of her legs had escaped her jammies and was hanging bare outside of the yellow flowered terry cloth. That image was a metaphor for my mom-ness...Everything is fine, people are happy, but nothing will ever be put together perfectly! Amen.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cat Fight

I was in a sterile-like room with a shower cap and rubber gloves on. I was standing across from my sister. She's five years older than me and she looked ridiculous in her get- up too. We'd driven 45 minutes across town in the rain with a Stake Relief society president in the back seat to go can our beans, dry milk, rice...and anything else we would live on if "the big one" ever hits. I looked around the room. The other women were slightly pot-bellied like me from having babies. There were crows feet, eyes with day old mascara, outdated wedding rings, successful and not so successful attempts at being fashionable. Just a hodge-podge of Mormon women at the cannery.

I thought back to my days as a teenager. I thought I was so, so (did I mention so) so cool. I could barely breathe because of how awesome I thought I was. I laugh so hard now at what I thought made me like that. Clothes? Music? Boyfriends? Good report card? Lame. I was harmless, but so vain. LOL! I'd die if you could see in my head and understand how important I thought I was.

So standing there in the cannery with my sweats and plastic apron, I just started to giggle. Then that turned into laughing. Which turned into uncontrollable laughing which fetched me some wayward glances from the potato pearl posse. My sister said, "What's so funny?"

I laughed more and pointed to her shower cap and then at mine and back at hers. Then I skipped across the packing room and sang, "Wee! Let's go to the cannery!" My sister understood. We talked about being such fierce big haired teenagers with a world of hearts to break and now we are among the leagues of the unglamorous. I saw myself in the reflection of the squeaky clean windows. I was a pretty frumpy lookin' mamasita. Oh...a full circle moment.

Don't get me wrong. I love my life. I love my babies. I love my house that is sometimes clean and I love my bills getting paid on time. I love folding my laundry GAP style and vacuuming my car mats. I love God and singing and praying my guts out to be better. I love my life. It's just not a glamorous life. And the vain me sometimes misses the cocaine-like draw of pointless and meaningless attention. I's a fault. But this is my blog and I can talk about it if I want.

So, this morning while my husband was swishing with Scope, we had a conversation. In that conversation, I told him that all I require is his awe-like reverence for my womanliness. He choked on his mouthwash, getting some on his tie and told me the house wasn't big enough for my ego. For the most part though, he does give me the paparazzi attention I need. (I still want him to gush about how amazing I look when I'm pregnant...and how could I possibly give birth in such a fertility warrior way...and darn if I don't look downright RADIANT!) It's a work in progress.

I guess it is balancing the housewife with the diva in me that sometimes gets in a cat fight. So, I'll wear lipstick when I pick up my kindergartner, and I'll put perfumed lotion on before bed. I'll still use my thumbnails to scrape cereal off of two day old dirty bowls, and I'll doctor diaper rash with stinky creams. I'll sock away food storage because I love the prophet and will do what he says. I'll pray and sing and watch over the blessed rug rats at church in my new calling. I'll write because it's the only thing that is truly my own anymore. Somewhere in there, I hope I find homeostasis.

Ladies, we rock.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Garth (not Brooks)

Garth Abbott loved my husband even when he dyed his hair blue and came to church with it like that. Garth Abbott cares for his 90 year old mother and family member with down syndrome. Garth Abbot has a wife, children, and grand children. He has the biggest meaty hands I've ever shook and an even bigger heart. He was my bishop when I was in college and he gave me acceptance, love and a better view of how much God loves me, loves us all. He knew my name in a sea of faces. He has aggressive cancer. He can't pay for the treatment. You can do a good thing by donating an item, service to an online auction for him or just donate money. Email his daughter-in-law at to see what you can do. I didn't think I had any talent or item to share, but I can make a killer Valentine's Day gift basket! What can you do? Check out the details at