Thursday, March 27, 2014


Maren has to lose weight.  Sad but true fact.  It's not a vanity thing, it's a health thing.  Pretty much no choice.  I know all the rules, I know how.  Move more. Eat less.  Mostly plants.  Etc etc etc.  So in honor of the fact that Maren has to do the things she does not like, mainly exercise and eat healthy, lets take a moment to face the fact that some of the things people say about diets are pretty much lies.  My apologies in advance if any of these motivate you, but they do not motivate me.  Different strokes :).
1. "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels".  Seriously, you people need to be friends with better cooks.
2 "Mashed cauliflower tastes just like potatoes". If you have never eaten potatoes I guess.
3.  "You won't even notice the difference".  Yes, yes in fact I will.
4. "It's not that hard to wake up half an hour earlier".  Not enough curse words in the English language to describe how I feel about that.
5. "Just take this pill or powder or whatever".  No miracle pill.  Just nope.
6. "Don't eat fruit".  I did not get this fat because I ate too many strawberries.  Too many chocolate covered strawberries after a meal drizzled in fat and cheese and sour cream and butter and all things good, yes but not because of too many strawberries.
7. "Planking feels so good".  If the fear of falling to your death feels good, then okay.
8. "Dipping Roasted Cauliflower in bbq sauce tastes just like Chicken Nuggets".  Where do people come up with this stuff?!
9.  "You only eat that stuff cause of (insert emotion here)."  Okay, sometimes yes, but sometimes chocolate cake just tastes better than carrots.  Go figure.
10.  "Zumba or whatever the latest fitness craze may be is easy.  You won't look silly."  Umm..have you met me?
11.  "It gets easier"...or perhaps it just gets more tolerable.
12. "You could totally do a marathon"...I really have no way to even respond to that.
13. "Once you eat healthy, you won't even miss the bad stuff." I will too. I promise I will.

Ah well.  Now that I got that out of my system time to try and be a bit more healthy.  Baby steps.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Causing your own anxiety

I am so skilled at causing my own anxiety.  I work myself up into a frenzy of what I am afraid might happen.  It is a talent, really.  The nice thing is that usually most of the things do not happen.  Occasionally, some do.  But one can either choose to be crippled by their bad moments, or choose to be a phoenix that rises from the ashes, as one friend once told me he viewed me during my current trials.  I am in good company.  JK Rowling has said that Harry Potter was born out of desperation, she had seemingly failed at everything else, so she had no option but to write what she had in her heart and her head.  Here are a few things I have worried about over the years that have happened and yet I got over it, or have happened and I am better off for it.

1. I was always afraid of losing a job.  Yep, done that.  Still lived.
2.  I was always afraid of being alone.  Done that, doing that at times.  Still lived.
3.  I was always and am still always worried about failing.  Fail all the time.  Still living.
4.  I was always afraid to say what I thought.  Often times I kept silent when I shouldn't have.  Some of the struggles I have now are a direct result of me keeping silent when I should have spoken up.
5.  I was always afraid of not being attractive.  Guess what? Beauty fades, but how people are treated, they remember that.
6.  I am always, always afraid I will not do enough for my kids.  But my parents were not perfect and I still love them.  So that should be what counts.
7. I am afraid of getting diabetes.  Have not gotten over that, or learned to handle it.  Still terrifies me.
8.  I am afraid of not feeling useful.
9. I used to be afraid of not being able to support myself.  So far, I have done okay.  Still get afraid sometimes.

Fear is such a strong emotion.  For some, it can be a motivator.  For me, I have found it to be a deterrent to progress. I am currently working on how to get past my fears so that I can still be strong and successful.  I have come a long way, but yet have so far yet to go.  

Sunday, March 23, 2014

New things

This last year as many know has been my most challenging ever.  I hope that I have walked away stronger and more confident.  I know I have walked away more aware of myself, and more blessed to see who true friends are, and to see the love of family.  I still struggle now and then with why me and jealousy thoughts, but overall I survive and feel good times are ahead.  Once I was given the accusation that I am "always" changing.  Interestingly enough, I would tend to agree.  I have changed. I have grown.  I see things from a different perspective.  Some things frivolous. Some things serious.  However, I think the me of  a few years ago would be shocked about the me now.  Here are several things I did not know about myself until the recent challenges I have faced, challenges that helped me get to know myself, without any attachments or pressures to others:
1.  I don't really like romances unless they are very funny.
2. I really like some superhero movies but I am picky.
3. I like making excel spreadsheets but I don't really know all the tricks
4. I really like jewelry
5.  I don't like a lot of things in my home.  I prefer a minimal decor 
6.  I love road trips
7. I love small cars
8. I like diet coke
9. I struggle to sleep
10.  I really like funny television
11. I like getting my hair done 
12 I love massages!!
13.  Being alone isn't as scary as I thought it would be 
14. I love being able to throw things out or give things away
15.  I love Disney World
16. I hate airplanes but love that they take me to places enough that I forgive the hate
17.  I need to find more ways to relax
18. I love cooking 
19. I love throwing parties 
20.  I love the color purple. 

The best part about this list is that it will probably change tomorrow 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Another let's be grateful edition

Crappy days happen.  Mother Nature adds to that.  At the end of a long, exhausting, crappy day, it's important to be grateful for something. Today, for me, that is:
1. Pickles.  Yes I am extremely grateful for pickles.  
2. Texting.  Yep totally grateful for the ability to text.
3.  Band aids. 
4.  Friends that force me to exercise.
5.  Excel spreadsheets.
6. The guy who did the frozen cover in all the Disney voices.  Seriously I adore him.   I want to be his friend.
7.  Sarcasm and sarcastic internet memes.
8. Friends who send me sarcastic internet memes.
9. Friends who give me pizza.
10. Blankets.
11. Frozen on DVD.
12.  Hot showers.
13.  Massages.
14.  Friends who send sarcastic texts and internet memes.  Bonus!
15. Days when I can go to bed before midnight.

Let's hope for a better day tomorrow.  

Monday, March 17, 2014

Whirlwind weekend edition

I am not one who likes to stay at home.  In fact, I kind of hate it.  So I tend to over plan, until I wear myself and everyone with me out.  It's not a problem for me, and I am still unsure of how the girls feel about it, but so far I think it is positive.  So, what fun things did I learn, experience, observe, or hear this weekend?
1.  A cute yet grabby toddler has got to be the most terrifying thing in the world to a 6 week old puppy.
2.  Not my puppy, mind you.  A friend's puppy.  Though said toddler would probably move in with friend and puppy if given the chance.
3.  Eating well is probably going to be my biggest challenge for the rest of my life.
4.  If you do one eye at a time while doing makeup, you get this response from a three year old "Mommy!  You have to paint the other eye!"
5.  Yelling out Pizza! when a child is asked a spiritual question in church was a proud moment in my life.
6. I should not be allowed loose in a cheese store.
7.  I was also quite proud when the three year old told the adult leader visiting her church class to not lean back on his chair cause it was not safe.  :)
8.  Kids apparently never run out of energy.  Ever.
9.  I think 3 year olds could take over the world if they banded together.
10.  I am so freaking grateful for the Monster at the End of this Book.
11.  I am madly in love with the guy that sings Let it Go in Disney voices.
12.  I adore imagination in children.  I really hope I can encourage my daughters to continue with their imagination.
13.  I need to go to the park more often.
14.  I also need to clean my bathroom more often.  Or get a maid.
15.  Still, my life is pretty awesome.

Happy Monday.  Have a good week!

Thursday, March 13, 2014


Some weeks are just more crazy than others, and this week sure has been one of them!  Want to know what I have learned?
1.  I make too many plans.
2.  Apparently I forget I need to sleep.
3.  I never neglect eating however.  Sometimes I should neglect eating.  
4.  Big Bang theory still makes me feel better. 
5.  I need to find more time to read.  I miss reading.  
6. Perhaps I could read more if Pinterest was not invented. 
7.  Seriously love every word that comes out of my children's mouths.  They are so hilarious.  
8.  You know that you have gotten old and lame when the highlight of the week will be driving to Logan to purchase cheese.
9.  Every day I lie to myself and say I will go to bed early :) and eat well.  
10.  In spite of it all, my life is still awesome.  

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Not broken

This post may be a little bit soap boxish.  Feel free to pass by if you wish.   I discovered today I hate the term "broken home".  Why should a child be told they are in a "broken home"? There is nothing broken about the love I have for my children.   There is nothing broken about the hard work I do to provide for my children.  There is nothing broken about us.  We are a wonderful team, and plenty of things are right about us.  
1.  We know how to have fun.
2. My daughters see that a girl can become a woman who can take care of herself. 
3. My daughters know home is about love, not location.
4.  My daughters know how to laugh.
5. My daughters know it is okay to cry.
6. My daughters know they can talk to me.
7. My daughters know I make mistakes.
8. My daughters see me say I am sorry, and try to make things right.
9. We have dance and singing parties :).
10. My daughters know we love, not judge.
11.  We know a family can be three people or thirty people. 

We are not broken.  We are learning and growing.  We survive and thrive.  

Friday, March 7, 2014

Daily musings Chicago Edition

I love coming home!  One of the best things about me is that I have many homes.  From Logan, Utah to the streets of Brooklyn this girl plants her roots deep where and whenever she chooses a place to lay her head.  So while Chicago was one of the shortest lengths of time I spent in one home, and during a particularly difficult time personally, it was home nonetheless.  So what did I notice upon returning home?
1.  Traffic.   Utah does not have bad traffic.  What we call rush hour is nothing.  Nothing, people! Nothing. 
2.  The lady at the car rental place: "sorry, all I have in that category is a Yaris.  They don't have much trunk space.  I hope you don't mind small cars."  If only you knew!  The Yaris is in fact sufficient for my needs.  
3.  Ah toll roads.  How I truly loathe you.
4. Though I do enjoy the toll road oasis for a bathroom break.  
5. Whenever I return to a location I impress myself with my recall in regards to where things are and how to get there.  I am direction savy!  I only had to use the gps once, and that was to go someplace I have never been before.   
6.  The LDS mission office is right next to Hooters.  Not sure who planned that one.
7. Seriously love me some Chicago food.  Love it love it love it! 
8. Kudos to southwest and their free inflight entertainment.  Consequently, kudos to tlc and the food network for ensuring I will never be skinny. 
9. The rest of America can keep there tiny rivers and puddles they call lakes.  I am definitely a great lake girl! 
10. Driving in certain neighborhoods makes me feel really tough.
11.  Why is it that Utah does not seem to understand the awesomeness that is closed in porches? 
12.  I love when you can sit down with people you have not seen in ages and it feels just as comfortable as always.  
13.  I love big buildings and skylines.  There is something so exciting about a metropolis!
14.  I also love Chinatown.  Any Chinatown. Every Chinatown.
15.  Good thing I had podcasts to get me through the traffic.
16.  Pizza tomorrow.  The thought alone makes happiness rise through my body.  
17.  Buying little Chinese dresses for my girls brings me more pleasure than it should. 
18.  Those little travel one time use toothbrushes actually work quite well.  FYI.  You're welcome :).
19.  I love Chicago.  I love dc.  I love New York.  I need to add to my list of towns I love and call home.  Someday I need to figure out how to live in London :).  
20.  After the girls are grown, I am going to become a crazy nomad lady moving from city to city.  It's going to be epic.  I will conquer every city!

Good night world!  More Chicago tomorrow! 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Awesome Mom

I am really good at making myself feel bad.  I feel bad that I have not blogged in several days.  I feel bad that I forget things.  I feel bad that I get frustrated.  So this morning, on a feeling bad morning, I am going to indulge in reflecting on the awesome things I have done as a mom in the last week or so.
1.  My youngest was struggling with falling asleep, and she wanted me to lay down with her.  In her toddler bed.  So I did.  Yay for being 5'2".  And it did not break! Bonus!
2.  My oldest wants to be a neuroscientist.  She is seven and she knows what a neuroscientist is.  Absolutely fabulous.
3.  Telling bedtime stories.  We take turns.  Hooray for creativity.
4.  The three year old loves to help me cook.  She really will be a creative genius.
5.  The seven year old and I are practicing a piano duet. :)
6.  When someone is unfair to my oldest, she says "That person needs to learn about Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King Jr.  We are not supposed to be unfair anymore!"
7. The alarm clock worked again.  She even wakes up cheerful.  We are going to milk this for all it is worth!
8.  When I mentioned I might take a Saturday by myself to read at Station Park in Farmington, my oldest said "Mom, go on one of our Saturdays!  I will read with you while Amalia plays!"
9. My children can already belt many songs from Broadway musicals.
10. Camping out on the floor cause they beg you to.
11. Feeding them.  Every meal.  Let's be honest, it can be difficult.  :) But we do it, and the food is good.
12. My children get plenty of affection from me and know that I love them.
13.  When I said I would be going to Chicago for the weekend, my oldest told me "Bring me back something awesome.  Wish you could bring back the awesome people, but I will settle for a gift."

Notice none of that was about cleaning or making people look perfect.  It's about what really matters.  Let's not beat ourselves up today.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Hidden Messages

So lots and lots of people are having fun arguing things like hidden agendas in popular animated films.   I always find this sort of thing amusing, because anyone who has paid attention in, I don't know, any English class since Jr. High, should know that there are messages every where.  How you interpret them says more about you than the story themselves.  Religious people should realize that most scripture is written this way as well.  I could go off on certain things (songs of solomon anyone?) but I digress.  So tonight let's just look at the "hidden messages" I got from Frozen.
1.  Its pretty darn brave to admit that you don't have to pretend to be perfect.
2.  Being "perfect" in and of itself is in fact a pretense.
3.  Having accomplished composers and singers do these kind of projects makes listening to the soundtrack over and over again more enjoyable.
4. At first glance, talking snowmen are creepy.
5.  Maybe Reindeers really are better than people.
6.  Sisters are awesome.
7. If he is really charming at first, and appears to have no flaws, its a trap.
8.  Don't mess with fresh lacquer.
9.  Writing a hit is a sure fire way to have people believe you must be evil.
10.  Lots of people don't understand that one song in the middle of the show does not mean the character does not learn, grow, and understand that there are consequences to action. (the same person who says "not right no wrong no rules for me, I'm free" only a little while later says "oh I'm such a fool I can't be free!" Cause seriously, these people who have never done something on a whim, disregarding rules, and then regret it later, seriously don't exist. (i.e. speeding ticket?)  And if they do, please, introduce me to them because they need more fun in their life.
11. Maybe its all just a ploy to get little girls to sing good music.
12.  Or, in all seriousness, have you seen the Norway part of Epcot?  Cause it's Arendelle.  The marketing department was doing cartwheels when they got the advance drawings.  I bet anything.
13.  Freckled girls want to be princesses too.
14.  Don't mess with a nice guy named Oaken.
15.  Trolls are bound to take over the earth eventually.

So what hidden messages did you get from Frozen?