Valentine’s Day

I started out my Valentine’s Day the way I believe everyone ought to start out their Valentine’s Day.

That is to say: I started out Valentine’s Day with my mother’s pancakes, dyed a lovely shade of pink -per tradition.Photobucket

After mom graciously fed us all and handed out Valentine gifts to the grandkiddies, I snatched up my nieces and brought them home with me.  Their mom went in for an ultrasound (it’s a BOY!).  Instead of having preschool class, we had a preschool party.  My one-year old niece is so dang cute that I can’t get enough of her.  Three years ago when Lacy was one and she was dumping everything out of anything, it really chapped my cheeks.  But watching my niece do it was downright adorable.  What changed?  I dunno.  My attitude.  The fact that I had another kid.  The fact that this kid is irresistable and I enjoy watching her dump things.Photobucket
I wish I had more for her to dump. And really -doesn’t that picture just make you smile? Laugh? Grin? Anything? I love it.
If that didn’t get you grinning, this Valentine, made by my four year old cousin will:Photobucket
He later added three sequins under it -a nice touch, if you ask me. Come to find out, he was trying to write “L-I-E” which is the last three letters of his sister’s name. He just got a little mixed up. I’m so glad. I’ve pulled that picture about eleven million times today, just to laugh at it.
Just as the party was ending and parents were picking children up, a white truck pulled into my driveway. The fire chief got out of it. I knew he was coming -he was dropping off some paperwork for my husband.
That’s what fire chiefs specialize in -paperwork. Not that I would know, but it seemed reasonable. I bought it. I BOUGHT it.Photobucket
Of course I bought it.
Because my husband bought me the purple flowers days before and THEY were my Valentine’s flowers, per tradition! I always got Valentine’s flowers the week before Valentine’s Day because we’ve always been too poor to afford something as dazzling as delivery. I don’t mean to say that we’re rich. We’re not. We are not. Financially, we are not. That’s why I got the purple flowers. That’s why my jaw hit the floor when the fire chief handed me a dozen red roses with a card attached from my husband.  The thing is: the fire chief’s wife works at Pat’s.  Photobucket

These mean a great deal to me, and if you’re going to guffaw over flowers and chocolates and The Hoax That Is Valentine’s Day, please don’t stop reading. What I’m about to write really doesn’t concern all that directly. It mostly concerns my parents.
Every year on Valentine’s Day, my mother would get a bouquet DELIVERED to her. It was always beautiful. BEAUTIFUL. As a little girl, I used to watch the excitement on my mother’s face. The flowers always made her glow, and I loved knowing that something my dad gave to my mom made her feel that way. He always ordered the arrangements from the same place. Pat’s. I frequented Pat’s in high school, picking up my brother’s corsage orders and my orders for those, you know… flowers you pin on the boy that are called by a name I can’t spell… boutennieres. Buttonierres. Boo-tun-ears.
Anyway, the place smells fabulous.

I never, ever told my husband about my mother’s Valentine delivery flowers. All I ever DID tell him was that I appreciated what he got. I also must mention that I’m a fan of brightly-colored grocery store bouquets. I am not a fan of grocery store roses. Am I a snob?
Well, yeah. I see that now. It isn’t entirely my fault. It’s my Dad’s, really! And this isn’t the first time he’s done this to me. My first year away from home, it took me nearly 10 minutes to buy a bell pepper. One. Bell Pepper. I picked one after another up and scoffed. Nothing was good enough! I had no idea people LIVED like that, scraping by on scrawny wilted peppers.  They looked nothing like the beauties my dad could turn out.  I won’t even get into the time I paid $4 for one watery tomato.
And steaks. My Dad makes the best steaks I’ve ever had. I didn’t know they were the best at first. I just thought they were steaks. Steaks were steaks and steaks were great. And then one day, one fateful day, I ordered a steak… at a restaurant.
It was disgusting.
I couldn’t eat it! I could not eat it! I’ve never been a picky eater, and I considered sending it back to the cook with a post-it note: This isn’t steak. I don’t know what it is, but I know what it isn’t… steak.
I didn’t do that. I was a junior high kid on a field trip, so I didn’t do that. But I went home and hugged a package of my Dad’s fresh steak. Okay I didn’t do that either. At least, not until I was in college and home for a visit.

My husband has told me time and again how much he loves that he married a girl who isn’t high maintenance. Granted, I do insist on growing a garden, but that saves money! I do insist on buying and butchering a cow so we’ll have fresh beef, but in the long run that ALSO saves money (steak at roughly $1 a pound? Yes, please!) but now there’s this whole FLOWER mess that has me rethinking my very character!
I thought I was down to earth.
I thought I was reasonable.
I thought I didn’t need flowers.
I’ve been spoiled.
I do need flowers, but only a certain type that make me feel exactly like my one year old cousin when she’s dumping stickers on the table… confident, a little reckless, and a lotta happy.Photobucket
Happy Valentine’s Day to you.

PS: who wants to break the news to my husband that I’m expensive? I don’t.  Oh, who am I kidding?  He’s figured it out by now.


Talents are a funny thing.

I was watching a talented man sing yesterday.  He had a beautiful voice, and wondered what it would be like to have a voice that resonated like that.  I longed to get up from the couch (I’d been watching him on TV) and burst out into beautiful song.  The only problem?  My voice is croaky at best.  It hasn’t been the same since I had Lacy, and to tell the truth, it wasn’t much before then.  Some music major I am…

It didn’t take me long to come to grips with the fact that I couldn’t sing.  I’d come to grips with the fact that I couldn’t sing so many time before that I had become rather used to it.  It goes something like this:

I wish I could sing like that.

Wouldn’t life be great if I could sing like that?

I can’t sing like that.

No amount of voice lessons will correct the croak in my voice.

My life is great despite not being able to sing beautifully.

I wonder if we have all th stuff to make brownies?

And that’s it.  Having the talent to sing would be great -amazing -awesome.  But it’s OPTIONAL.  If I can’t sing, it won’t drive me crazy.  I’ll just go through life without auditioning for American Idol, a show I’ve never watched anyhow.

But what about cleaning house?  I admitted to myself for the first time yesterday that I don’t have a talent for keeping my house clean.  I keep telling myself that I can’t keep it clean because of this and that, but the bottom line is this: I’m not good at organizing.  If my house my organized, I could keep it clean.  If everything had a place, I’d be better off.  MUCH better off.  As it is, I spend much of my life cleaning.  This gets me down.  I want to have a clean house!  So what do I do?  Work harder, not smarter.

I read a woman’s online profile yesterday.  Do you know what it said?  I love cleaning my house and watching TV.  I had to read it through a few times.  She LOVES cleaning her house?  I’m bafffled.  I get satisfaction out of cleaning my house, but it all goes to pot when all the work I’ve done gets rapidly undone. I lose motivation, think ‘why bother?’ and go back to doing something that will STAY done, like making aprons (Incidentally, this is also why I sometimes go through phases where my legs remain unshaven for grossly long periods of time).  Much to my despair, a singing talent is 100% optional but a cleaning talent is HIGHLY recommended for a woman in my position.

Yesterday, I decided to get the house as close to clean as I could before my husband came home from work.  I must interject here that my house isn’t DIRTY.  It’s cluttered.  I put the iron away.  I put the starch away.  I picked up toys, and then SMACK in the middle of cleaning, I got an idea for an apron and straightway got the starch and iron back out.  My husband walked through the door, I apologized profusely, he laughed at me, and I went on to relate to him my latest goal:

Make enough money selling aprons to hire someone to organize my house.

Ta.  Da.

(PS: a few hours before my husband came home from work yesterday, I sent him a text asking if he wouldn’t mind taking the kids out of the house for a few hours so I could clean.  A reply text came back almost instantly: “Are you okay?”  He was seriously concerned about me.)

Reaching the Limit

I have mothering models -women I look to and try to emulate as I mother my own little gosling.  One of those women is Sister Marjorie Pay Hinckley.  Her mothering methods have always been so admirable.  I read once that she made a point of never telling her children “no” when she might tell them “yes.”  I’ve tried to keep up with that, but I know I’m nowhere near as great a mother as she.

My children, as I’ve mentioned before, are going through some tough stages -as individuals and as a couple.  Ha.  It seems more than hilarious to type that.  “As a couple.”  Ha ha.  I won’t bore you with whining about it all, but I will tell you that I’m struggling.  I find the word “no” escaping my lips more and more everyday.

I usually let my kids “help” with anything they want to help with.  It’s important to me -not because I hope they’ll grow into teenagers who ADORE helping their mother (dream on) but because I want to build our relationship.  Anyway, how do you turn down “help” when it comes to you with two matching aprons in her chubby little hand and says things like, “I could be like just you and do da dishes!”

Side note: I love the way she switches “just like” to “like just” and I never correct her.  In fact, I switch it when I talk so she won’t know there’s a “right” way.  Does that make me evil?

I also love being touched.  I’ve been known to pay my children to scratch my back, play with my hair, rub my feet… I’m a kitten in a mom body.

But last night, I reached my limit.  In a way, it’s good. I actually didn’t know I had a limit, but I guess all kittens do -especially as it concerns toddlers.  After their constant fighting, their “help” with the dishes (which consisted of me re-washing 1/3 of all the dishes), and asking them repeatedly to PLEASE help me pick up their stuff or it was going in the garbage… I collapsed into a seated position on the floor in front of my computer, turned on netflix, and tried to escape into a movie -any movie at all.  As it started, the kids started playing with a loud noise-making toy.

“No,” I said, taking it away and putting it in the toy box.  Lacy pulled up a small chair next to me and began pushing her legs up against mine.

“No, no,” I said, inching away.  Trent crawled onto my back.

“No,” I said, literally prying him off.  Once off, he tried pulling at some cords connected to the computer.

“No!” I said, pulling him away.

Then I started the movie over because I had missed all of it up to that point.  This continued throughout the movie, and I became aware of just how much I was saying “no.”  The kids continued to clobber me, and I continued to beg them to stop.  Stop touching mommy.  Just for a minute.  They seemed disinterested in the kitten’s wants.  In fact, they were more interested in letting me know what THEY wanted.

“Mom!  Mom!  Mom!”


Finally, when my movie was over I did something bad motherish.  I flipped on a default movie -one that was sure to captivate them completely.  While they stared at the screen, I retreated to the couch and simply stared off into space and breathed.  I realized I needed a break.  Bedtime was coming up -I felt bedtime would suffice as a break.

I thought wrong.

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that a mother, as soon as she has retired the crib, will end up with a toddler in her bed every single night of her life.  If not one, then two.
And so I woke up irritated, having not gotten a break of any sort. I hate feeling this way -it isn’t as if I’m getting some sort of satisfaction out of feeling this way.  It isn’t like me at all!  I maintain that I need a break.  I maintain it.  I don’t usually ask for or need breaks very often because I like being smothered and touched and needed.  But surprise!  I have a limit.

I think that’s fairly normal.  I bet even Sister Hinckley had a limit.  I woke up this morning and decided to pray about it.  I got down on my knees and pled my case to my Father in Heaven.

“Please help me to find joy in my children today.  I need some space, but I can’t have any right now.  Help me to be more patient and happy…”

At this point, my son crawled on top of me and started bludgeoning my head.

“… See?” I said, and then ended my prayer before my head got beat off.

I then logged onto Mormon Messages for my morning devotional and watched this:

It lifted me up enough to face the morning. I’ll worry about lunchtime when it gets here.

If Only

If I wanted to be fit as much as he wanted that sucker…Photobucket
I’d be a regular Jillian Michaels.


A while back, my husband and I went to the city with our kids, and it wasn’t a disaster.  Back then, the kids weren’t into fighting.  They were cherubims who shared and hugged and spread pixie dust everywhere they walked.  Right?  Whatever they were, they were easier to take to the city then than they are now.

On that particular day, my husband took us out to eat at The Olive Garden.  He used to work at an Olive Garden when he was growing up and he’s always been sort of attached to their Chicken con Broccoli (which I’m pretty sure isn’t even on the menu anymore but they make it if you ask for it).  As always, he ordered Chicken con Broccoli and I ordered soup, salad, and breadsticks (by far and away my favorite thing to get).  Our food came, and I leaned over to help the kids eat their maca-ernie (that’s what it’s called at our house) and cheese.  As I finished, I looked up to find my husband looking at me.

“You,” he said, as he speared a piece of chicken with his fork and then pointed it at me, “are a beautiful woman.”

I don’t mean to throw him under the bus by saying this, BUT: it had been so long since I’d heard that!  I was taken completely off guard and it shocked me.  I didn’t know what to do, and instead of doing something rational like THANKING him, I just…


Right into my minestrone.

How very feminine of me, I know.  Needless to say, after that he was a little more prone to voicing his positive thoughts about the way I looked.

A few days ago, he told me that I was beautiful and I blushed -a huge step up from blubbering over bread sticks.  I asked him (after thanking him) if he remembered the day I cried in The Olive Garden.  He said that he did, and I went on to tell him that above anything else, a woman just wants to hear that she’s beautiful.

It’s nice to hear that dinner was good, that the house looks nice, that I’m funny or nice or cute.  But to be told that I’m beautiful?  It means the world to me.

“It means the world to any girl to hear that she’s beautiful,” I told him as we drove down the road to our (fated) trip to the city, “Watch… say it to your daughter.”

My husband adjusted the rear view mirror so he could see her better.

“Lacy,” he said, catching her eyes, “You’re a beautiful girl.”  Instantly, a smile spread across her face and she tucked her head down.  She looked out the window because she was embarrassed.  Later on that day, we heard her singing from her car seat.

“Daddy says I’m byoot-i-ful… Daddy says I’m byoot-i-ful…”

(I made us some aprons from the same fabric and she’s beside herself with joy. When we wear them, she holds the matching fabrics up next to each other.)

Daddy speaks the truth.

My Little Pretties

On Saturday we spent the day in the city.  It seemed we had run out of nearly everything in our house, and I was feeling a little Mother Hubbardish.  I had been looking forward to our trip to the city for days.  I wasn’t excited about spending the amount of money I knew we were going to have to spend, but I was looking forward to GETTING OUT OF THE HOUSE.  The kids and I have a bad case of cabin fever.

Yesterday it got so bad that I had to clear out completely.  I packed up the kids, drove twenty four miles to the nearest Wal-Mart, breathed a sigh of relief, and then spent money, got after the kids for fighting, and came home completely exhausted.  Yes, it would have been better to have stayed at home.  My hindsight vision is so clear it’s maddening.

Our day in the city started off wonderfully.  My husband and children went with me into the newly remodeled Joanne’s Fabrics where I nearly fainted with enthusiasm.  I wasn’t able to browse like I would have liked to, but I found what I needed and we went to check out. (I picked up a book titled Apron-ology in the magazine section, fawned over it and then replaced it.  My husband picked it back up and bought it for me.  It has been my constant companion ever since.)  The computers at the registers weren’t functioning quite right, so the line was long.  People were impatient.  Quilters and crocheters alike were beginning to voice their annoyance.  My children were busy rummaging through the displays at the check-out line.

Wooden birdhouses?



Their joy was complete.  My husband and I looked lovingly at each other.  Our eyes locked and spoke (though we never spoke out loud) saying, ‘What little DARLINGS!’

We scooped them up and read books to them.  A woman a few feet in front of us who spoke as business-like as she dressed said, “Your children and beautiful, and they are very well-behaved.”

We thanked her and our eyes locked again.  What little DARLINGS!

As we walked out of Joanne’s and into Bookman’s, my husband confessed that when the woman had complimented our children’s behavior, his chest had puffed out about three feet.  I wrapped one arm around him, told him he was a good dad, and then basked in the wonderfullnes of the day I had been looking forward to for so long.

After Bookman’s, we went to Sam’s Club.  We had to spend SO much money on food.  We went beyond the budget, which we both knew we would but there was no getting around it this time.  The kids had spent the entire shopping trip annoyed with the fact that the other breathed, touched things, and generally existed.  My husband and I walked out of the bulk shopping warehouse with absolutely no bounce in our step, which is ironic given that our pockets were lightyears lighter.  We unloaded the car, buckled the kids in, climbed into our seats and locked eyes.  They were both worn and wary.

“The little stinkers,” I said audibly.  My husband shook his head, and off we went to our last shopping destination.

Super Wal-Mart.  I had to finish our shopping list.

At this point, my once-bouncy hair was limp and frazzled.  My make-up had fallen.  My posture was laughable.  With both kids in tow, my husband and I ventured into the store.

The kids were still at each other’s throats.  They kicked, they touched, they fought, they fought over the food I put into the cart.  They fought over their coats.  They fought over EVER-EE-THING.  I tried to get through the store as quickly and efficiently as my energy would allow.  I didn’t realize that my son had gotten ahold of the Mac n’Cheese.  And can I just say?  We just FED them.  We took them out for “chicken dip its” which, as we all know, is chicken strips.Photobucket
I took it away from him and tried to keep it away from him, but his sister got it and tried EATING the dry macaroni that was escaping.
In frustration, I tried to increase my speed and efficiency. But by the time I’d made it to the cold cereal, my son had taken my glass bottle of red wine vinegar and dropped it over the side of the cart. It broke on the hard floor and the distinct odor of vinegar wafted through the store. I sent my husband for help and with marked embarrassment, I explained to a lady sporting a mop what had happened. She cheerfully sent me on my way, and I apologized my brains out, even after Mop Lady was out of ear shot.
Once at check out, the cashier gasped when she picked up the Macaroni and Cheese box.
“Do we have RODENTS?” She asked, horrified.
“You don’t,” I said, warily pointing to my son, “But I do.”

I have two, in fact. Two “well behaved” little rodents. One of which came home, grabbed his Iron Man fleece blanket and blue pillow, and mad a bed on my piano bench.
We all slept REALLY hard that night.
The moral to the story: next time we need to go to Sam’s Club, WE ARE GETTING A SITTER FOR THE DAY.

When Was It?

Throughout our marriage, my husband has always pin-pointed the “moment” he fell in love with me.

“When I took you home to meet my family,” he said.  He took me home A WEEK after we’d started dating.  I was a wreck.  Seriously.  Coming from a small town, I already knew the parents of everyone I had dated.  I’d never had to meet any before.  But I did.  I put on my John Deere shirt, my overalls, my lucky red shoes, and I DID IT.

As we spent the weekend with his family, my husband never said one word about love.  He didn’t say one word about love the next weekend either, when I took revenge and drove him home to meet MY family (it wasn’t really revenge though.  With steaks like my dad makes?  Oh, boy).  He didn’t say a word about love anytime that month.

Finally, right when I was cleaning out my college house to move home, he sat me down on the couch and he told me he thought he might be falling in love with me.

The truth was, he was already gone.  Done fallen.  But he wanted to tread the waters of love on the safe shallow end instead of jumping off the high dive into the deep end (on account of other women treatin’ him bad.  It’s all very vintage country music, minus the whiskey).

Finally, on June 1st 2004 (happy birthday, Tia!) I told him that I loved him.  And he said it back.  And 26 days later we got engaged.  And six 1/2 years later, we stayed up after the kids had gone to bed and engaged in a heated game of Pirates Battleship.  What can I say?  We’re too cheap to pay a babysitter for our hot Friday night date.  I’m happy to report that I beat him, fair and square.  I’m also happy to report that he made a hot chocolate run and added french vanilla creamer to both of our cups, just like we used to do when we were dating and he lived next to a Circle K.  So delicious.

After we were done playing, we started talking.  I’m going to confess to you right now that we actually talked until 3:15.  As in: AM.  Why do we do that to ourselves?  Why, oh why?  Because there’s so much to talk about, I guess.  There’s so much to laugh about.  Apparently, there’s still a few things to reveal.  For example, I finally confessed that I hate belly buttons.  They really gross me out, and I refuse to touch mine unless I’m pregnant and it’s flat.  He confessed something as well.  He told me that the weekend he took me home to meet his family, there was a particular kiss.  He described it.  I remembered it.

He confessed that THAT kiss… THAT moment… was it.  The exact moment that he fell in love and knew he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.  The rest is history in the making.

Playing Pretend

Lately, Trenton has decided that nap time is optional.  His attitude is suffering, and so is my patience.  Yesterday, he threw such a big fit that I put him in his soon-to-be-taken-down crib.

“I don’ wanna gake a map!” He cried (translation: I don’t want to take a nap.)

I had just gotten out of the tub and was tired.  I knew I needed to fold laundry and do dishes, but it was COLD.  Instead of going to the sink or to the clean laundry on the loveseat, I curled up on the couch.  My daughter made her way toward me and started asking for things.  I didn’t want to get up, so I turned my laying down into a game.

“I want to take a nap,” I told her, “Can you help me?  I need a blanket.  Will you get me a blanket?”

I didn’t really want to take a nap, but I knew she likes to pretend.

“Sure!” She said, running out of the room.  Second later, she appeared with her fleece princess throw in tote.  She tried throwing it over me once.  It didn’t work.  Twice!  It didn’t work.  The third time was a charm.  Once the blanket was thrown over me, she went to her toy box and brought out a stuffed puppy for me to snuggle with.

“Now will you read a story to me?” I asked her, snuggling my puppy.

“Oh, sure!” she said.  She pulled up a little Lightning McQueen chair and her favorite book.

She sat down, spread “Little Bitty Mousie” across her lap and flipped through the pages.

“I just don’t know about these words,” she said, “I can’t read them.”

“Just try,” I encouraged, grateful for every moment of rest time I could muster.

She turned the the first page, and she READ that book!  Apparently, she has most of it memorized.  The parts that she didn’t know, she made up.   I watched in fascination as she flipped through each page and softly “read” to me.  Her little voice was so sweet and soothing…

Pretty soon, I fell FAST ASLEEP.  I love having a girl.

In the Case of Mom v. Trent

First of all, he flatly refused to obey.

All I asked of him was to find and put his boots on.  He refused, and he gave me attitude.

“NO!” He cried, stomping his socked foot.

I told him behavior like that was unacceptable, and then I warned him that if he persisted he would be spanked.  I asked him one more time to find and put his boots on.

“NO!” He cried, shaking his head and stomping his socked foot.  I made my way toward him, firmly let him know that his behavior wasn’t going to be tolerated, and then I spanked his bottom.

He burst into tears.  His bottom lip began resembling a diving board.  He fled from my presence into his bedroom where I heard him wailing and bawling.

“Once you get your boots on, we’ll go to great-grandmas,” I called after him.  It was Sunday evening, and we always visit Grandma on Sunday evenings -just like everyone in our family does who lives in town.

Minutes later, he emerged from his room.  His eyes were red from crying, but his boots were on.  I praised him for his obedience, gave him a hug, and off we went.

Family members were gathered throughout grandma’s house.  Trenton went to any ear who would listen…

and TATTLED on me.

“I got… trouble,” he’d say.

“Mama… MAD,” he’d say.  Then -now this is crucial -he’d drop his shoulder, lift one hand up to his head to support it, cast his eyes down, and sadly complete his story.

“Mama… spank.

The tale never varied.  He took it to anyone who would listen.  Woe to him.

Last night, he acted up again.  This time, it was to his Daddy.  His Daddy acted just like his Mommy, and after Trent gave Daddy attitude, Daddy spanked him -just as he had warned him he would.

When he was done, I pointed at my husband.

“Now you’re in trouble.  Now he’ll tattle on YOU,” I said.

“Trent, did you get in trouble?” I asked, prompting him.

“Yeah,” he said, sadly, “Daddy spank.”  But his voice didn’t change.  His hand didn’t go up.  He didn’t look down…

“Trent,” my husband said, “Did mom get mad?”

IMMEDIATELY, his hand went up, his eyes went down, his shoulders dropped…

“Yes,” he said, “Mommy spank…  Mama’s mad…”  And so his tale began all over again.

I’m in the dog house.  Come on over -he’ll tell you ALL about it.  I just wanted you to hear my side first.

Old Pictures

My mother scanned a bunch of old family pictures and saved them to discs.  She then gave them out as Christmas gifts, and we all treasure them.  There’s a few of my dad’s baby pictures that I just love.  There’s a few pictures from my parent’s wedding.  There’s some of my grandparents as young parents.  There’s also newer pictures.  When we were growing up, my mom made collages and used them to make (I believe it was) a calendar.  Here’s my page.There’s a couple pictures of my larger-than-life glasses.  If you look at the one on the far right, you’ll notice a crater of a pimple on my chin.

Truth: I practiced my flute so much that the pimple really never had a chance to heal.  Ever.  It once got so big that one of my sixth grade classmates asked me what happened to my face and I lied, “I fell down.”

Wow.  That felt good to get off my chest.  I’ve been harboring that sin for years.

I love the picture of me with the olives on my fingers.  I’ve convinced my own children that when you put olives on your fingers, it gives you “IRON MAN” fingers.  They’ll eat a can of olives all on their own and chant “Iron Man, Iron Man, Iron Man,” the entire time. Victory.

There’s a couple pictures of me sleeping.  I wonder why I didn’t enjoy that as much as I should have.  *yawn*

Please excuse the picture in which I am not wearing a shirt.  Please.

There’s one of me on the classic Jackrabbit that lives in, well, Jackrabbit.  Across the street from him in the classic “HERE IT IS” sign that was featured in the Disney movie, “Cars.”  Only this “HERE IT IS” sign has a Jackrabbit on it (not a tractor).

I’m really rather fond of the picture in the middle of the page of my Grandpa holding me on his lap.  Twenty years later, he gave me organ lessons.  I didn’t sit on his lap, though.

In one of the sleeping pictures, I’ve got a copy of the book “Sleeping Beauty” between my feet.  It always has been my favorite story.  Down with ee-vill.

There’s also a picture of me in one of my Easter dresses.  Every year until the I entered full-blown adolescence, my parents, AH-HEM, the Easter Bunny brought me an Easter Dress.  I looked forward to a brand new dress more than anything.  That year, the dress came with a matching straw hat.  I had my mother french braid my hair into two braids and I wore that outfit to my grandma’s famous annual Easter Egg Hunt.  While there, my aunts told me that I looked like my great-grandmother.

“When she was my age?” I asked, flattered.

“No,” they replied.As much as I love my Nunna (far right), I didn’t sport the straw hat anymore.  And look how little my sister was!  Age has not changed that brilliant red hair.  Love, love, love it.

And love love her.