October 10, 2012

Dating Divas Halloween Couples Contest

I know I have been absent from the blog scene this past little while and I hate that.  I'm coming back, baby, in full force!  
There is a fun reason for today's post.
I'm entering our super awesome Angry Bird costumes from last year into a contest!
In case you don't remember, here they are:

Fun and fabulous, am I right?!?
we need votes.
Lots and lots of votes.
Starting October 16th you can go here and give us some love.
And if you do I'll make you some cookies.
Or brownies.
Or send you a present.
Or something nice like that.
Anyway thanks for your support.
More to come.
But until then
Go vote for us!!!
Pretty please??

August 12, 2012

We're Back, Baby! Also, it's Sunday!!

So it's Sunday and so I'mma throw one of these at you.  
Pretty sad that the last time I did this was uh, well, the day before the worst day of my life so far.  
But it just makes for a more drastic "look how big my kids are" unveiling right?!  
Albeit a little out of focus and melancholy, it's my babies.  
And it's Sunday.  
And we're back, baby.


June 16, 2012

There's A First Time For Everything

Well, well, well.
Guess what my big fat butt did this morning!!

If you guessed slept in, well, my friend, you would be incorrect.

Me and my BOB ran our first 5K!
(BOB would be my Big Ol' Butt for those of you not in the know)
Get out of town, right!? Who is this girl you ask!?
It's me, baby!  
Well, the new me anyway.  
The old me thought running was for suckers and that it would most definitely be the end of me if I were to try to run.  
In 6th grade, I HAD to run the mile.  I think I did it in 12 minutes.  
And thought my life was over.
In high school I was in track, but I was a thrower.  
We had to run 2 laps every practice. 
I dropped out.
Well look at me now.
I've still got some post baby chub.
I'm tall and awkward and the complete opposite of graceful and athletic.
But guess what ya'll?! 
I did it!
All you haters can suck it!  
 And I'm talking to you 6th grade and high school me(s)!
Go sit down and think about boys or something.  

Here's how it all went down...

My cousin Stuart, his sister Sarah, and their Mom Sue all signed up to run the 5K and I am so glad they did!  It was awesome to be there with people I love!

Here we are, doing a little pre-run laughing.  You know that's important, right?!  Forget stretching out those calves and thighs.  The belly laughs are where it's at.

I THINK this is Stuart's game face...although it could just be gas...

It was 7 am and Sarah was more that happy to be up and going...

Yeah, uh, I got nothin' here...this could be gas too...

My awesome Aunt Sue, who I learned today has quite the running past.  She's awesome.  Oh I already said that?  Okay well, she is so deal with it!

These are my adoring fans, so dedicated that they woke up super early and hauled their tiny butts out to eat granola bars and whine.

It's a tough gig, being my fan, but they're pretty great at it.

Here we are learning "Da Rulz"

A quick prayer and we're off!

Lap one went well.  I was good.  Life was good.  My new special running clothes were giving me the wedgie of my life.

Lap two: a little tricky, starting to contemplate hiding around the corner and just jumping out at the last minute and finishing in with the speedsters.  Also, why does all running clothing decide to head north in the event of a little southern movement??!

Sarah looks pro.  I think this needs to be a Nike ad.

Stuart.  STUART!!

He crushed it!  He even hurt his back earlier in the week and he just rocked it like a boss!

Lap three: Cursing late night munchies from last night and considering making a pact with the Devil to get me out of this situation I am in.  And then I noticed that approx. half of the runners we started with were done and having delicious Gatorade and bananas.  Boo.  Also, my Ipod between my cleavage was creating a strange pool of sweat...ahem.  And I look like a frog.  And my pants and I were on a break.

Last lap: done.  Don't care about anything else but making it to the end.  Even if there were a bunch of dirty, dirty cheaters out there running with me...you know who you are!

Donezo.  Finish line!
Seriously donezo.
I ran my first 5K in 37:40.
It was a 3.73 mile course and that means I ran 10 minute miles!
Bwa ha ha ha ha!!!
Yeah buddy!

Here comes Sarah...and Stuart!


So that was it!  We all did it and it was actually kind of fun.  What am I saying?!  Who AM I!?!

Would you like to know the secret of my success??
I'd be more than willing to share if you promise not to judge.

My little secret would be my super awesome playlist my Ipod I created.
I had a whole bunch of tried and true songs that I'd been testing out for weeks.
But in the 11th hour, I switched up the scene and added some new ones to the mix.
And just put the ol' 'pod on shuffle.
Would you like to hear the mega super awesome pump-you-up playlist my Ipod created for me?!
Okay.  Here's what I ran to in the order of their appearance:
Not kidding, #1 was Eye Of The Tiger.  (My Ipod has the best sense of humor ever!)
#2 Hey Ya by OutKast  (Shake it like a Polaroid Picture)
#3 Pain by Three Days Grace (Yup, fitting I know)
#4 Dog Days Are Over by Florence and the Machines (It's a way good song to run to.  Try it!)
#5 Good Life by OneRepublic  (It was a great moment, actually)
#6 Everybody Talks by Neon Trees  (I sorta wanted to die during this song)
#7 Billionaire by Travie McCoy and Bruno Mars  (I DO want to be a billionaire!)
#8 Fire To The Rain by Adele (Ah Adele) 
#9 I'm Yours/Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Straight No Chaser (I think I was hallucinating at this point)
#10 Sex on Fire by Kings of Leon  (I ran through the sprinklers, you know, because I was on fire.)
#11 Leave Me Alone (I'm Lonely) by Pink (I was almost done...and lonely)
And finishing it off, #12 Cowboy by Kid Rock (DON'T YOU JUDGE ME!  You know you love this song!)

So there you go.  My big secret: an awesome playlist to keep your spirits up.
Oh and training since March.  
But you know, technicalities.
I can't wait to do it again.  And I know my time wasn't that great but ya gotta start somewhere, right?!  At least it's a start!


My Own Way

I ran a 5K today.
My very very first one in my whole life EVER!
I'll post some pictures of the day's events later.
But today was kind of a big deal, and I wanted to explain why.
A year ago today was Miss Amelia's due date.
She came 5 days early, thank heavens, but it's still funny to think about.
Tomorrow is Father's Day.
It might be a rough one.
But let's talk about today.
No wait, let's start a year ago today so I can explain how I got from there to here.

A year ago today I had a brand new baby girl.
Life was good.
Really good.
My life was amazing in fact.
I had a best friend who I talked to every day.
I had the sweet baby girl that I'd been dreaming of forever. 
It was summer and life was beautiful.
After I had Amelia I gained some weight.
I am one of those lucky women who don't LOSE weight while nursing and actually GAIN it.
Awesome, I know.
Try not to be too jealous.
But ah well.  No matter.  It would work it's way out, like it always does.
Fast forward 5 months.
My husband got a new job.
And he moved to Utah.
And I stayed in Riverton with 3 kids.
And it was stressful.
And then we packed all our crap in boxes and put it in a storage shed.
And moved in with my sweet Gramma to live in her basement.
And put our house for sale.
And waited.
And waited.
And it was stressful.
And then our dog Zoe died.
And I was sad.
And stressed.
And unhappy.
And the thought occurred to me that enough was enough and it was time to lose some weight.
And I thought, 'meh, maybe running would be a good way to shed some pounds.'
And as I watched some more TV and sat on the couch, I thought about it some more.
And then there was a call from above...er something.
My Gramma's stake was putting on a 5K in June.
And I thought about MAYBE trying to run it.
But I hated running.
Stupid high school track.
Also I was a mother of three and finding time was going to be hard.
But I thought about it some more.
I decided I'd just jump in with both feet.
But I'd need some shoes.
And an Ipod.
And the right kind of clothes.
And I couldn't possibly start until I had all those things.
But I signed up for the 5K anyway.
And didn't tell anyone.
My little secret.
I figured we'd have our house sold by then and possibly be in our own house, but I could always come back and run it!
One day in March, we went to Logan to go sledding and then we went to a sports store.
I just happened to be looking around the running shoes and playing around with the thought of actually getting a real pair of shoes.
And another sign came down from above.
I was looking at the shoes that were on sale.
There was 1 pair of size 10s.
So I opened them up
And I heard angels singing.
They were black and hot pink.
The only pair in the store.
The only size 10.
I had to get them.
So I did.

And then 2 days later, my Dad died.
And the sadness spiral came back with a vengeance.
I was really sad.
I was really stressed.
I was really unhappy.
And I ate a lot more than any human should ever consume.
Eating makes the sadness go away...
Not really, but when you're in the throes there's no stopping it.
And I was more depressed than I have ever been in my entire life.

And so I ran.

I'd walk Izacc to school and run back.
I ran on Gramma's treadmill.
Then I started doing the unthinkable.
Unthinkable I say!
I started getting up before my family and running.
And it was sort of like magic.

I wasn't running to lose weight anymore.
I wasn't running to get ready for the 5K in June.
I was running from the pain.
I was running from the sadness.
I was running to be alone with my thoughts and memories of Dad.
And guess what?
It was hard.
It sucked getting up to go out into the cold when the baby had been up most of the night.
It sucked looking in the mirror and seeing basically no results.
It sucked feeling no motivation at all.
But I kept going.
I had to relax and stop worrying what I looked like or how fast I was going or how freaking tired I was.
Or sad I was.
I started praying before I'd run.
And asking for the help I needed to keep going.
And got stronger.
And ran longer and farther.
And I let go of all the worries.
And suddenly I didn't feel as sad anymore.
And I didn't want to eat the world anymore.
And the fact that our house wasn't selling wasn't as stressful anymore.


So here I am today.
My Dad died and it SUCKS!
I'm still overweight.
Our house isn't selling and we're basically throwing our money down the drain waiting for it.
Zoe was the best dog anybody could ask for ever.
We're living in Gramma's basement, cozy and tight and raising her electric and water bills.
But guess what?!
I am content.
I am at peace.
And I am happy.
We're living life on this roller coaster and all the ups and downs and I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be learning from all of this.  
But a bloggy friend of mine said it best in a post she recently wrote and it really hit me over the head.
She was talking about how once she went tubing down the river and was freaking out and struggling and worried and panicking and fell out.  And she looked around at everyone and saw that they were all relaxed and actually enjoying the ride.  So she stopped worrying and relaxed and she said that the "raging river became a peaceful stream once I quit fighting it."
Quit fighting it.
Quit fighting it!
So simple.
So I did.  
And I have.  
And I have sad days.  
And bad days.  
But I was missing my life while I wallowed in my sad pool of pity.
And I didn't want to miss anymore.
My baby is one.
My Izacc is going to be a first grader.
My Ian is busy being 3.
And I will not miss one more day worrying or feeling sorry for myself.

So today was about more than just running 3.whatever miles.
It's been a journey.
An actual personal journey.
And I'm by no means out of the woods yet.
But I'm going to keep running and going and trying
And putting my trust in the one who knows how all the chips are going to fall and when they're going to fall and why.
He's got it covered.
I'm not freaking out anymore.
I've quit fighting it.
And it's getting good...again.


May 25, 2012

You're Invited To A Pity Party...You've Been Warned

I feel like I need to put a disclaimer on this puppy.  I am not writing this for attention or sympathy.  I am getting my bad thoughts and feelings out of my brain so maybe I can think clearly for a minute.  You have every right, as with everything else out there, to skip over this entire post completely.  It's more just for me anyway.  

It's one of those days.  I have, understandably, had quite a few recently, but today is certainly one of those for sure.

I miss my Dad.  There have been so many times this week when, for a split second, I thought, 'I should call Dad and tell him about this.'  And then reality hits.  And it's hard.  It's really, really hard.  It has been getting a little easier with the passing of time, but man is it hard.

I feel like I am taken for granted.  A lot.  And that people just assume I'll be there for them.  Or that I will be able to drop whatever I'm doing to help them out.  And don't get me wrong, I do.  A lot.  Anyone who knows and loves me can tell you I have a problem with putting others wants and needs first.  And I have no problem with that.  I'd almost do anything for anyone.  But when it's assumed, or done without any gratitude, it hurts.  Me.  A lot.  I feel like I'm there for so many people anytime they need, but when it's me who wants or needs something, I'm low on the priority chain. And I'm tired of it.  I feel like I am not important enough to make time for, and it really hurts.

I am so freaking sick and tired of paying for a house that we're not living in.  I am tired to being a burden on my sweet Gramma, who is an angel for taking us in in the first place.  But it's hard on her and it's not cheap.  And I would love nothing more than to pay all of her utility bills because heaven knows, a family of five using water and electricity is not cheap.  But I can't because we're literally dumping all of our income into a vacant house.  And I can't take the utilities out of my name until we sell it.  And I am seriously throwing money at the city of Riverton because I have a water/sewer/garbage bill that still gets paid every month and NO ONE IS USING IT!!  It is so frustrating.  SO FREAKING FRUSTRATING!!!

And speaking of money, why are things so tight these days?!  Aside from the obvious, I try and try to make things work out in everyone's favor every month and I still can't please everyone.  I need to get the kids some clothes, but we owe the credit card too much.  So I pay the credit card extra and then Izacc has to have a tooth pulled out.  So I take from the savings.  But then I have to use the credit card for something and any extra money that was going back to replenish the savings account now has to go back to the damn card.  And my husband gets mad because I am supposed to magically make everything work and I CAN NOT DO IT.  Honestly, I'm exhausted.  I am fully aware that every single person plays this song and dance every month, but itdoesn't make it any easier.  It's my baby's first birthday next month.  And I want to have a party for her.  And I feel so guilty for even thinking about it because of all the things we could be using that money for. 

I have decided I hate Facebook.  I used to love it.  I loved knowing how my friends from high school were doing and what was going on with my extended family.  But I hate what it's become.  And I hate the games that people play.  And I think I'm staying away for awhile, you know, to improve my mental health.  I know, everyone says that too, and it's a possibility I'll be right back on tomorrow.  But right now, I'm hurt and I'm done.

I've been running.  Training, doing intervals really.  I have yet to see any difference in my dumb body.  No, that's not true.  My calves are ridiculously large.  I had to cut a pair of pants into capris because I couldn't get them over my large and in charge leg muscles.  The tummy, however, seems to be a permanent fixture and isn't wanting to go anywhere.  So I feel less than motivated to get outta bed in the morning and go out because I'm not seeing any results.

I have cleaned the living room today 4 times.  I have been making a conscious effort this week to be on top of the housework.  It's more than exhausting, its making me crazy.  I pick up the exact same messes over and over and over again.  I can remember when I was working and couldn't wait to be a stay at home mom.  
'How nice it would be,' I thought, 'to stay home all day and do what I want and hang out with my kids.  Man that would be nice.  I can't wait!'  Yeah.  Boy was I naive.  It so much more work than I ever imagined.  And it's not my own space, since we're in Gramma's basement, and so it's even more stressful because everything down here is hers and the kids are not the cleanest.  I try and I try and it's seriously impossible to keep up.  I clean the living room, then go work on dishes only to find sticky fingerprints on the chair and goldfish all over the living room floor.  And then my husband comes home to a mess and can't understand what I've been doing all day. 

And my kids are in rare form today.  Or I am less than tolerant.  Or both.  But they are being just so SO naughty today!  I don't even know what to do!!  I love them it's true.  I love them to pieces.  But sometimes they make me so crazy I want to go lock myself in the car.

Is there a solution?  It there a way to balance it all?  I know that God won't give us more than we can handle, but I'm done.  I feel like I am at the breaking point.  I am pushed right up to that line and one more thing will seriously crush me.  Someone please give me the secret to making it all work out because I can't even begin to understand how.  I'm hurt and tired and sad and frustrated and angry and just so sick of it all.  


March 22, 2012

Normal Part 1

I'm exhausted.
My brain is exhausted.
My eyes hurt.
I feel so let down, discouraged and empty.
I'm holding it together, for my kids' sake, but I'm not myself right now.  And they know it.  And I know it.
It's been the longest, most unreal week of my entire existence.

Wednesday I woke up and for a split second thought that maybe the events of the previous day were a nasty, nasty dream.  But I was snapped right back into reality soon enough.  And it was hard.  We met with the bishop and finalized funeral plans.  I made a list of things I needed to do before the funeral.  We talked.  A lot.  My brother and his wife got there.  My aunt and uncle came over and had dinner with us.  And we talked.  A lot more.  About my Daddy and who he was and what he did.  We looked through a scrapbook about his life.  I scanned pictures into the computer for a slideshow about his life.  I talked to my husband and cried.  Really cried. I stayed up all night going through all the digital pictures I could find for the slideshow.

I went to bed at 6:45 am.  
And my baby woke up and wanted to eat.  
I finished feeding her and closed my eyes.  And my alarm clock went off.  

I did sleep for an hour or so.  And then I got ready.  And then we went to the mortuary.  And picked out a casket.  And designed a program.  And chose a signature book...what are they called?  Guest book?  Anyway, the one we chose was perfect, he would have loved it.

My brother and sister-in-law and I then got in his car and made a marathon trip to Logan. He needed his suit, which was at the dry cleaners.  And I needed a new dress.  And my mom needed a new dress.  It was the smoothest shopping trip I've ever taken.  Things basically just hopped right into my cart.  And they were perfect.  Two dresses for me, two for my mom, two for Amelia, and two suits for Ian later, we were done.  Thanks, Ross.  You saved my bacon.

I then dropped my sil off at her home to pack and went to Walmart.  We figured we'd save time by splitting up.  And it was fine until I was walking through the store and realized that this was the very first time I'd been alone with my thoughts.  The very first time I didn't have anyone to talk to.  And I was running on an hour of sleep.  And I had a baby in my arms.  And that was it.  I was that crazy lady sobbing through the aisles.  And I got what I needed and literally ran to the car.  Sobbing.  And I sobbed the whole way back to their apartment.

We got my sister-in-law's flute and drove back to my mom's house.  And it was real again.  And I was exhausted.  

Friday my mom, brothers and I went back to the mortuary to help get my Dad's body dressed and ready for his last party.  
And there he was.

It was him.

And it wasn't.

My brother and I hugged and cried together.

And my Daddy, he looked so handsome.  They had done an amazing job.  Amazing.  
My Dad had a brain tumor removed when he was 21, but somehow received some nerve damage.  My whole life he could only hear out of one ear.  And one side of his face sagged a little.  

And as I looked at him that day, his eye was perfectly normal.  And he looked beautiful. I put some makeup on his ear and hand to cover some owies he had.  We dressed him in his temple clothes.  I held his hand.  And tickled his feet.  (He HATED people touching his feet)   We cried and smiled and talked about Dad.  My brothers and the two morticians lifted my big daddy into his casket.  And they rolled him out into the big room where the viewing was to be held.

And we cried some more.  

My aunt, his sister, came by.  She walked into the room and stopped.  And cried.  She said his casket was beautiful.  It was.  It was prefect.  A beautiful ceder with pine trees embroidered on the lining.  He would have loved it.

We stayed for awhile, talking and crying.  And then we left to run some errands.  Get some pictures printed.  Buy some frames.  Go to a fabric store.  Put pictures in frames. Gather some of Dad's favorite things.  Style Gramma's hair.  Practice song with Nicole and Sevena.  Get ready.  Get kids ready. (Thanks Nicole, Spence, and Rachel) Stop at grocery store to get lint brush, nylons for Mom, and some of Dad's favorite church candy to put in his retirement vase and share (Thanks Christine).  It was a crazy afternoon, but we got it all done without feeling rushed or panicked.  

We had a viewing.  There were SO many people there.  He would have HATED it.  My Dad was well loved by many, but he was not a social butterfly and often shied away from situations that would put him anywhere near the spotlight.  But it was for him, and there were tons of folks who loved him.  It was good to know how many people he touched.  It was amazing.  

I didn't want to leave him that night. I stayed until everyone had gone and just sat by his body, crying and talking to him.  After hugging and crying and laughing and meeting so many people, I was spent.  Drained.  Physically, emotionally.  It was a hard night.  But it was for him and about him, and I think he would have been pleased.


March 13, 2012

How Is This Happening?!

I have no words.
Well, that is absolutely not true.  I have so many words and I just don't know what to do with them all or how to even express them in a way that makes sense.
I lost my Daddy today.
He was only 58.
I figured we had at least another 10 or 20 years before I'd have to go through this and I am not ready.  Not ready at all.
I am not in my right mind and I feel like I'm in a fog. I want to always remember this day and the events surrounding it, so I'm going to spew it out here for the world to read.
In all reality, I don't have a journal and can't sleep.  So feel free to skip this post if you like, won't hurt my feelings a bit.

Last night, my husband watched the episode of How I Met Your Mother where Marshall's Dad died.
It's all hitting really close to home.
My sister-in-law called me this morning to tell me they'd taken him to the hospital in an ambulance.  He didn't wake up last night.  He wasn't breathing this morning when my mom went to take a shower.
That's all I knew.
So I sat there and stewed and my thoughts went to places I didn't even want them to go.  Like what we would do about a funeral.  And what I would wear to a viewing.  And what I would sing.  And that my sons wouldn't be able to be baptized by their papa.
And I just shook those thoughts off as me overreacting and moved on.
We had just seem him on Saturday.
We'd gone sledding.
We had a wonderful day with my family and basically enjoyed each other's company.
Two days ago.
So I waited to hear anything new and just chalked my worst case scenario thoughts as just that.
Until I got the call.  At 10:50 am.
It was my brother on my mom's phone.
He said "Camie, I've got some bad news."
He told me the story...and then said he didn't wake up.
:He died:
I said "Are you kidding me?"
And I told him I'd be there as soon as I could.

And the remainder of the afternoon is a blur.  I picked Izacc up from school.  I packed.  I folded clothes.  I called Izacc's school.  I took a shower.  I hugged my aunt.  I talked to my best friend.  I got a bazillion texts.  Word sure travels fast.  I told my babies that their Papa was in heaven taking care of Zoe.  I packed the car.  I drove, with my gramma, the 4 hour journey to my parent's house.  I had a headache.  We had quite a few visitors and lots and lots of food.  I helped plan a funeral.  I cried a little.  I have yet to really realize what's going on.  Really.

When we got to my parent's house, my Ian was giving my Mom a hug and kept asking her "Where's Papa!?  Where's Papa?!"
He's two.
He doesn't understand.
I'm not sure I understand.

I still have a headache.
I'm noticing that I'm being strong for everyone else.
I'm not sure how long this will last.
I think about it and become overcome with sadness and I just have to stop and focus on the one task at hand.  Pack.  Drive.  Get kids to bed.  Eat.

I don't know what to do.  I don't know where to go from here.  I've never had to do this before and I am so scared.  It's going to be rough.  And I'm not okay.

I went into his room and he's all over in there.  His hats.  His gum collection.  His ties.  His stupid covered wagon lamp.  How can this be real?  How can this be happening?!?

My baby, who has yet to really say anything besides "Ma ma ma ma" and "Ba ba ba ba", was in the bedroom with me.  And she was on my shoulder facing the other way.  And she said "Papa".  And I looked at her and she said it again.  And I looked at my mom and cried and as she looked at all of us and pointed with her chubby hand towards the last place he existed on this Earth and said "Papa".

I deleted a message from him off my phone yesterday.
I'd do anything to hear his voice, see him, just know he is in the other room snoring.

I miss my Dad.
And I'm not okay.


March 12, 2012

Not Sunday

Man it has been FOREVER since I did this!
Sorry.  I'm still trying to get settled into our new temporary basement living life.
And it's not Sunday, it's Monday.
And they're not dressed up, but they are sunburned.
We were in Logan on Sunday.
And Saturday for that matter.
And Friday evening as well.
We had a fantastical weekend sledding with my parents and brothers.
Dad sat in an inner tube, we screamed down the hills.
More on that to come.  
But the fun we had.
Ha ha and oh the sunburns!  
My poor kids.
Mother of the year strikes yet again.