Thursday, January 31, 2008

changed my mind

I don't think it's whooping cough. His fever's too high.

Please pray that he'll feel better and soon, that he'll be able to take in fluids and regain his appetite, and that he'll get good rest tonight, sleeping without a shirt in a cool room. The Tylenol is working on the fever, but he still says he's too hot. Poor kiddo. We may visit the doctor Friday.

Blakie's a champ though, letting me take his temperature calmly, then snatching the thermometer from me to take my temperature, both ears, and, while we're at it, why not my nose, arm, chest, and tummy? He has a very gentle bedside manner.

random observations

Utah loves Honda Elements. Elements, Elements everywhere, and there were even TWO orange ones on one small lot near our hotel. Seems like Bozeman loves them too - I can't swing a dead cat without hitting one, and I like my dead cats to swing wide and free.

When the nurse snickered as I told her I thought my son had whooping cough, I wanted to reach through the phone and shake her. I am not an alarmist mother (as any who've witnessed can attest), and I'm proud of that, so when I say "WHOOPING COUGH," I'm not freaking out. I've analyzed the symptoms, listened to both my child's cough and the examples online, and believe I've come to an educated hypothesis about why he coughs so hard he almost throws up, gasping for air between bouts. However, I also know there's almost nothing the doctor can do for him, so I'm keeping him hydrated and as comfy as possible in the meantime. Still, it breaks my heart to hear him hacking throughout the night, waking scared by how hot his fever is making him.

"Oh God, that's funny," came from the mouth of my wee child yesterday. I promptly explained that we say "Oh my gosh," that I don't care how anyone else says it, he is not permitted to say "Oh God." My horror and indignation were quickly erased by the memory of which family member taught him how to say "dammit." Retraining him is NOTHING compared to retraining ME.

As we shoved through the slushy ice in the parking lot, him riding in the grocery cart, I expected tears at the rough treatment. Instead, he laughed over the violent bumps and veers, saying "It's like a four-wheeler!"

Pulling away from the coffee kiosk (upon pulling up, the clouds opened and a troupe of angels sang the Hallelujah chorus), Blake waved and blew kisses, then said, "Bye little house!" I asked if the girls lived there. "Yes. They sleep under the tent."

Quiz time:
Which Myers girl do you think sold a Victoria's Secret catalog to a fellow student at the tender age of 11? She got 75 cents, and my folks got a call from the boy's mother, wondering if they knew their daughter was in the soft porn trade.

Between the modeling for the video of a Montbell jacket (not yet posted), the modeling of an Outdoor Research Ninjaclava, and the modeling for an ankle protector (not yet posted), I'm beginning to think that BackpackingLight just brought me to OR for my body. I'm oddly comfortable with that.

Quiz answer:
It was Reese. Shocking, I know. We only just started speaking to her again.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Mormons hid the coffee when we were in Salt Lake. That's the only explanation for why two able-bodied women in dire need of caffeine couldn't find any early on a Tuesday morning.

We later found out there's a Starbucks in the hotel across from the convention center where we spent every waking moment.

Ahhh...burned coffee is better than none at all. It was amazing to feel the change go through me as my little heart went pitter-pat in appreciation for the uppers, counteracting the melatonin I'd taken the night before.

I'm sure I'd be a better person without drugs, but maybe I'd be a raving lunatic, and who wants to take the chance?


My child is turning three. THREE. This boggles my mind. We watched some videos of him from a year ago, and it was so sweet to hear his lisping voice that has now turned into a more confident version of Daddy Blake on helium.

(Side note: Blake wants for nothing. NOTHING. If you have to get him something, take us out to coffee and play with us. We'll enjoy it more than the toy he'll break or the clothes he'll refuse to wear or the book he'll obsess over and make me read daily and nightly and ever so rightly. Or, you know, whatever you want.)

I think I'm going to invite two other wee people and the requisite mommas and head to the McDonalds play area. It's a very special day, yes sir. Also, maybe sledding, and definitely cake. This birthday may have snuck up on me in a sneaky way, and the party may reflect that (but come on: sledding!), but if there's one thing I can do and do well, it's bake sweet things.

Back in high school, I would routinely torture my family (mostly Dad) by whipping up something lovely and delicious-smelling, then carting all of it off to some youth group function. Dad finally made a rule that I had to make TWO of any given thing - one to take and one to leave behind. He called me "Addie Crocker." I know, totally nerdy and cute, but it's true.

Making people fat must be one of my spiritual gifts, and who am I to turn down a gift given by the Lord God Almighty?


I've finally found a job I love. I LOVE IT. And it's hard because we're in a growth spurt, and a lot is being asked, and I hate to disappoint. I may say that "I can only be SO amazing," but I really want to be amazing all the way while doing everything all the time. While wearing makeup.

That said, I know that this too shall pass (and it's not that bad, it's just taking up too much of my time), and this line from dooce felt all too true:

That book comes out, oh, I don't have any idea. Later this year? I guess I have to finish writing it first, and I didn't know this, but the hardest part about writing a book is ALL THOSE WORDS. The easiest part is ALL THAT DRINKING.

I may not be writing a book, but I've recently edited one and am in the throes of proofing it...while juggling a few other balls. Ok, one thousand other balls. The good news is that I kick ass at this. The bad news is that I am tired and haven't watched a movie in over a week and a half. That's just wrong. When will I ever catch up on my drinking?

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

a little something

Between the unpacking, dishes, email, mail, stretching, and plain old relaxing, I haven't time to post these days. I'm sure that will change soon, but until then, enjoy the video (long promised) of Blake showing off his new jam-jams.

PS - Salt Lake was GREAT. I got home to a fully satisfied child who also happened to be over-indulged, over-tired, over-stimulated and loving every minute of it. Thank you Grammie G! We'll be missing you fondly.

Monday, January 21, 2008


We are here, we are tired, and I'm going to go shower. Drive was good, it was -29F in West Yellowstone (-20F in Bozeman!), and I've spoken to Blake - Grammie G is spoiling him exactly like she should. Have I mentioned yet how much I appreciate her willingness to take him on for an entire week? SO MUCH. I've only given her one requirement: if she gets us a puppy, she has to potty train Blake. She's not indicated that a puppy was on the horizon, but YOU NEVER KNOW.

Also, I love Ryan and Stephanie beyond words. We had a great time in the car, they complimented my music selection ("Baby Got Back" was followed by "Come Ye Sinners" was followed by "Gold Digger" - the unedited version), and we talked and laughed and were silly. They are some of my favorite people, and I get to hang out with them for a whole week!

I hope we all still like each other by Sunday.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

a few for my homies

Pretty flowers from Aubyn - she's a dear one. I was at first alarmed that the flowers (sent on a non-event day) were from someone from whom flowers would not be welcome...but they were from her, thanking me for being a friend!

For aunt Karen - my wee snowman. I love you!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

salt lake city

Apparently, I have neglected to mention to many of you that I am leaving for a business trip very early on Monday morning, and I won't get back until Sunday evening. We're going to Salt Lake City for Outdoor Retailer, the biggest convention for outdoor recreation businesses in the country. I'm really excited - I'll get to meet folks I've previously only emailed or spoken to on the phone, I get to try on my hat as an editor (not sure what this will entail), I get to prowl the floor with Stephanie to find new fun items we should carry in the gear store...and she & I get Tuesday to ourselves.

IKEA, here we come!

I'm not really certain what to expect. I know Ryan is always completely wiped out afterwards because all our guys stay up until unholy hours, posting dispatches about the show to our site. I may end up being errand-girl extraordinaire, but I can do that. Apparently, there's custard involved.

Anyway, Margie is getting here tomorrow (pray for safe travels), and will be with little Blakie all week long. Pray for THAT too. They are by no means strangers, but she's very brave to jump into a full week in a town not her own, with a child she's had limited time with - I am nervous for both of them.

I'm sure she'll do fine, and whatever rules of my get casually ignored, well, I guess that's a Grammie's job (MY mother has certainly done her share of ignoring). Besides, she'll have to live with the consequences too, at least for a little bit! I'm currently making lists of likes/dislikes, fun places to visit (plus directions), meals, health instructions, etc. etc. There is A LOT to think about, but I'm super-grateful for her willingness to do this.

I'll have email and my phone, but it may be quiet on the blogging front for a while. If you JUST. CAN'T. STAND. IT...well, check out dooce. Or, check out our site: We upload stuff every day, and I'm not sure what my contribution could be, but there may be modeling involved. I hear some of the guys are bringing two-pieces, so I am bringing my HandyCam.

Should be a good time. I'm tired, getting everything prepped for it, but looking forward to whatever comes my way. Also, we are bringing our own wine. Never know what those Mormons might water down and try to pass off as alcohol - like they do with the beer. Sheesh - gotta keep your eyes on those ones, I'll tell you what. Sneaky.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


I was tickling (provoking) Blake today while we were watching a cartoon. He was not as interested in playing as he was in whatever was happening on the one-eyed babysitter, and was lamely smacking and pulling at my hands, when he finally got fed up and said,
"No, Momma. You keep your hands to yourself, please."

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


I am sick and tired of working through grief. I want to be done, and every time I make significant progress, seems like something comes along to completely and utterly cut me off at the knees. What's so screwed up is that these things are pretty unrelated to my specific cause of grief...but down I go.

I hate feeling like every stupid thing comes back to ME. I hate feeling like something that will be an enormous difficulty for someone else, someone I love very much, is making ME sad. It feels selfish and ugly and sinful.

But...I love my discipler. She gives me tools to work through things, specific interpretations of my feelings so it's not ALL ABOUT ME, and specific action items so that I can move towards healing in a purposeful way. She validates some of the feelings that are so ugly to me and points out the danger or sin of others so that I can address them, let go, and move beyond.

And yet I know that I am so not close to being done grieving. I hate that too.

Sunday, January 13, 2008


I keep a humidifier in both Blake's and my room because I woke up and realized I am actually 70 years old.

No, wait - it helps with our breathing and dry skin, particularly his eczema. Yep, that's the real reason. Well, his is a cute little penguin that sends out a visible stream of cool water. He thinks it's pretty wonderful and likes to turn it on.

The other morning, he came into my room, per usual. I picked him up to take him to his room for the standard diaper change and clothing argument. Pushing open the door to his room (he always closes it behind him, which I did not teach), I took one step in the dark and almost landed on my rear. Flicking on the light, I could see what had happened: Blake had turned the humidifier up as far as it could go. All night long, that visible stream of cool water flowed from the penguin and drifted to the floor, coating everything within about four feet. I wiped down what I could (toys, closet door, wall, and floor), and aimed a fan at the wool carpet, which was quite damp.

So, my house has only recent STOPPED smelling like a wet sheep...which I suppose isn't as bad as wet dog, but when I think of sheep, I always think of Daddy Blake's term for them: prairie maggots.

My house smelled like wet prairie maggot. Visitors welcome!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

be jane

Every woman should have (or know the location) of a toolbox that contains these things:
I've had this stuff since graduating high school, since I grew up with a father who builds custom homes and a mother who knows her way around a toolbox. I no longer take such things for granted, now that I know a number of sweet gals who couldn't find a screwdriver if their life depended on it. If you can't find a screwdriver, then I recommend knowing where the electric drill and corresponding bits are.

I love being handy.

back in the saddle

I did it! I went skiing for the first time since Daddy Blake and I learned I was pregnant. It's been 3-4 years (I'm not certain), and I think the long wait was wise, as it wasn't an emotional hurdle for me to go. I remembered how to get into my boots and such, which wasn't hard, but when you're not familiar with something, every little step seems so foreign and strange that you are confident you've just done it very wrong and therefore someone will die.

I found Molly and her friend at the ticket office and away we went! I got off the lift and blessedly, my body remembered how to turn and stop a short distance away (as opposed to sliding off and immediately tumbling down the mountain because I am out of practice). We started on some easy runs, and it was fabulous to remember how to do things like turn and stop, which I had taken quickly to when I first learned, but without practice, well, you just never know if something has changed. Like sex. It's been long enough I'm beginning to wonder if some radical new discovery has all my married friends doing it differently, and when I get back on THAT saddle, I'll find I'm hopelessly lost. (I bet I won't care!)

I had really never skied Bridger Bowl (the one time Reese & I went in high school does not count, as no one in their right mind would call what we did "skiing"), so I have nothing to compare it against. The lines seemed kind of long and the runs a little short because I'm used to Big Sky, but that was perfect. It gave me a chance to get rested while going up the lift, then hyperventilate and whoop all the way down, letting the down time in line take my heart rate back to safer levels.

I took a few spills, including one nasty one that has my shoulder and wrist kind of funked up, but all told, I am pretty proud of myself. Molly, while out of practice longer, had also been skiing since the age of three, so she looked all graceful and pretty gliding down the hill. I looked more like someone who knew the very general idea of what skiing looked like, but my arms and legs were not exactly obedient or fully under my control.

There was a TON of snow (in the places where those naughty snowboarders hadn't pushed it all off), which was great for falls, but it wasn't packed down enough for me to turn easily, especially on one particular hill JR (Molly's - and now my - friend) convinced us we could totally do. I will not repeat some of the words I used as I gingerly eased my way from one side of the bowl ALL THE WAY to the other, but by the time we were down, I had blood in my eye and was aiming to smack JR a good one. He evaded me easily, much like you could outrun a daddy-long-legs. On ice. With its feet weighted down.

Anyway, it was great fun. I got to know JR a little better and thoroughly enjoyed him. Molly and I got some good talking in just before we both passed out from sheer exhaustion, and I'm looking forward to my next time on the hill. Looks like I can go for $10 again NEXT I just need to round up a friend who won't feel like it's a wasted day skiing with me on the greens and blues. Any takers?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

photo update

Our cute little tree, which looked like a bottle brush, and a crooked one at that.

See the wild child in a foreign environment...what we're witnessing here has never before been caught on film: a quiet moment of self-play. Moments after this shot was taken, the child tore the bricks off the fireplace and ate the rug.

"This present is for me? Are you sure, because I don't know...I'm scared?"

Happy little Commie

Blake and Grant, a cousin, of sorts. He's also a rock star...

...and was helpfully showing Blake how to be cool. Blake was thoroughly impressed and adoring.

Merry Christmas! Left to right: Smith, Reese, Matt, Mason, Lane, Scott, Monica, me, Blakie.


I'm starting a few supplements today in the hopes that they will help me to sleep and possibly curb my sugar cravings. They were recommended to me by my discipler, and she's noticed a dramatic difference. I don't sleep well - I can usually fall asleep, since I get in bed around 12:30 am, but I can't stay asleep nor do I sleep deeply. I don't go to bed earlier because of the magic of hours without a small, energetic distraction winding himself around my ankles and begging for food. I've tried experiencing the magic of those hours in the morning, but that would involve leaving the lovely warm bed. So, I stay up too late and get up just in time to be late for work.

Also, I have a snacking issue - I love it beyond all reason. I'm not one of those girls who likes to snack on fruit or nuts or something weird like that. I go straight for the sugary goodness of cinnamon bears (if I don't actually chew them, they don't pull my braces off), ice cream, a white chocolate mocha without much of that distracting espresso...mmm. So, the first time I approached 160 pounds, I was eight months pregnant and felt pretty good about only gaining 20 prego-pounds. The second time, I was still nursing Blake and eating like my belly button and back bone were too well-acquainted...but something had changed, and the weight crept back on. Then it stayed there. I have actually had a nightmare where the terrifying thing that woke me up was the fact that I'd stepped onto the scale and it read 175.

That was months ago, and I realized as soon as I woke up how silly it was...but I knew I was on my way if I didn't change my eating habits and/or exercise. Since I don't really enjoy the latter, I've been working on the former (I don't really enjoy that either, but portion control and moderation don't require me to break a sweat and take a shower). As a result, I've lost eight pounds since Thanksgiving. Wahoo! It's the little things, like my pants buttoning without giving me a muffin top.
Blake has taken to s-t-a-l-l-i-n-g at bed time. He is, in fact, an expert at it. Here's a typical evening for us: jammies on and teeth brushed, he gets a cup of milk or water, and we read two or three stories, usually about tractors. I turn on the mini Christmas tree he's overly attached to, his night light (because he NEEDS them, BOTH of them), and his humidifier, and he gets to push the button on the CD player for a full hour of VeggieTales delight. We pray, I hug and kiss him, then get up to go.

"Momma? I just need, about 10 of these) just need a drink. I just so sirsty (thirsty)."

"Momma? Mmmm (burying his face into my neck), I missed you so much. You have to sleep with me." I'll admit, I give into this one just a little.

"Momma? I just need to snuggle. Will you scratch (tickle) my arm/back/face/eyes/neck/hand?"

"Momma? It's just so serry (scary)." When asked what, he tells me that it's the chair. It needs to face away from him. It already is. I tell him lovingly that his stalling is disobedient, and if I have to come in again because of it, I will have to discipline him. The only reason he can come out of his room at night or call me in again is if he's pooped.

"Momma? I just go poo-poo. It's stinky-yucky-gwoss!"

Tonight I heard a very sudden and very dramatic increase in the sounds coming from his room. I open the door, and VeggieTales IS BLARING. THE CAPS LOCK IS A VISUAL REPRESENTATION OF THE WALL OF SOUND INTO WHICH I INNOCENTLY WALKED.
I get to go skiing tomorrow with Molly. We are anticipating a lot of laughter and possibly cussing as we reacquaint ourselves with both our gear (Are these my skis? I thought my skis had flowers on them?) and the concept of throwing our fragile bodies down a steep and slippery slope. Should be fun, and I'm glad I'm going with her, because there will be no pressure to perform, and if there is pressure, I will just hip-check her and knock her down, then sit on her with my big, Gore-Tex-swathed ass.
Slippoly - Blake-speak for "slippery." I love it and try to get him to say it as much as possible without him knowing. Any time we walk on ice (which is everywhere here - Bozeman doesn't plow worth a darn), he slides all over and exclaims "Momma! I ice-skating! It's so slippoly!"
I may not be ready for a romantic attachment, but if you're going to tell me that, have the good sense to say that God is not ready, or the timing is not right. Otherwise, it sounds like you think I'm doing something wrong, and then I will get all up in your business clarifying EXACTLY what you meant by that.
I miss time with Naomi.

Monday, January 7, 2008


So, I borrowed another idea from dooce with my occasional "annoying" and "charming" posts. Here's one from her that is painfully true these days.

"Christmas" letters

They'll be going out, hopefully sooner than May, but the picture included requires two things:
1.) I must look pretty.
2.) Blake must be cooperative.

These two things rarely coincide, because once I wrestle Blake into cooperative-ness (shut up, it's a word!), I no longer look pretty. I look more "sweaty" and "tired," which are not looks I care to share with my friends in the form of photographic evidence.

you must be this tall to ride this ride

Having a readership of tens of people, I feel compelled to update, even if I have little to say. Well, I actually have A LOT to say, which unwitting folks discover when they call me for a brief chat. The trouble is that I am unwilling to share some of that with the internet. Just don't want to handle all the questions and or judgement.

I will say this: just because I am a single Christian woman of a certain age does not mean I am desperate enough to let go of standards I've held for quite some time. The standards are somewhat more extensive than "male" and "Christian." I'm okay with that, so the rest of the world had better hop on board.

That's all. Now hop!

Saturday, January 5, 2008


Blake: "Momma, I just so hungry."
me: "We're having pizza for dinner. What do you think about that?"
Blake: "I think that sounds good. (pointing at me) But YOU have to have pizza...(pointing at himself with both hands) I just have to have waffles."

Wednesday, January 2, 2008


  • Mangoes, now that I know you slice them, THEN peel them. Makes all the difference in the world.
  • The friend who left breathless, urgent messages on my phone using coded words and locations about the mission she was on: returning my spackle.
  • Blake, discovering the toys I'm ridding us of and deciding that they are, in fact, HIS FAVORITE TOYS IN ALL THE WORLD.
  • Blake, telling me he needs another kiki (blanket), and, when I've handed him one, smelling it and handing it back to ask for a green one. Clearly, the one I gave him smelled blue. Also, he is crazy.
  • Being home.


  • The Honda Element. As Molly noted, I've disliked these intensely for at least four years (so has she), largely because many years ago, I gave up using refrigerator boxes as cars.
  • People who apologize, but not really, by saying, "I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings/offended you/whatever..." IF? Believe me, if you're apologizing to me, there is no doubt whatsoever that you did something very, very bad, and you must be punished.
  • Googly-eyes. The kind that move when you shake them, like on a toy. They freak me out!


Blake loves his *relation concealed to protect the innocent* and will follow him anywhere. Like over Christmas, when he followed him into the bathroom. Since everyone is on my side about Blake being potty-trained ("Come on kid, let's make this happen!"), the * wasn't too perturbed.

"Whoa," said Blake. "That's a big penis."

"Yep," said *. "One of these days we'll get you one."