Saturday, October 31, 2009

the dump needs my junk

when i stay in a hotel, i love the uncluttered, unadulterated space. only the absolute necessary items in the way. i would love to live like that. clutter makes me crazy, and i somehow live in a sea of it. my insanity is attributable to a few things-one of them clutter. so when i sold the old ugly furniture in the office, i put all of the "stuff" otherwise known as junk or clutter or trash, in boxes provided by the new neighbors who just moved in next door. lots of boxes of "stuff"...scrapbooking paper and office supplies, files of "important" papers and lots of different kinds of envelopes and pretty cards from home goods. boxed up a whole drawer full of old prints (as in photographs-weird to see photos on paper these days)...which will most likely need to be scanned at some point. all this stuff i supposedly cannot live without. and im weird about my donations too. have to go to someone who needs all my valuable junk.
HELLLLLLOWWWWW.... the dump needs my junk!!
now i have the task of putting it all back in this glorious empty room...still have the bookcases to tackle...and new furniture to buy, but the clutter drama will forever plague me. and why is it, i can walk into friends homes, and immediately look around and want to straighten up, sort their pantry and do their laundry? then return home and find it impossible to sort my own. i swear i have an illness. and actually, i would not even care if my house burned down to the ground (knock on wood) and all my important, irreplaceable valuables lost in the wind. i think the only thing i would miss are the numerous photos of my kids strewn in the garage in various unmarked boxes...and now a big box sitting on the library floor.

someone please come throw it all away.

Friday, October 30, 2009

autumn sunshine

guess what i was doing all afternoon?
and they won.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

warm heart

i just returned from a parent teacher conference with danes teacher. she is PERFECT for him. I think as a mother when you send your kids off to school as youngsters, you just pray their experience will be good, they will be shown the same amount of love and respect they receive at home and they will be happy. dane loves his teacher. really loves his teacher. and if you know dane, he tells it like it is. does not know how to lie. and the first words that came out her mouth this morning when she greeted me at the door were..."i love your son."
when she told me that, i think my heart skipped a beat. so glad the feelings are mutual.
on the first day of school he told her that he loved her "like a mother", that she could be his "mother" at school. she told me today that was the most lovely thing she has heard in all of her 20 years of teaching. she also told me, as she looked me square in the eye, that dane is one of about 4 students who she considers to be very special, "old souls" she called them.
human beings who make an imprint.
i walked out of there on cloud nine. initially i was worried about the conference, as dane struggles a bit. not a lot, but a tiny bit in a few areas. maybe i was worried because i have never had to really stress about my other kids. they were exemplary students. stars of the classroom, so to speak. easy. emma even skipped a grade because she was so "together".
however, i was told this morning, that dane does well. dane is a star.
dane has friends, and dane is watched over by a teacher who genuinely cares for him.
thank you mrs. elkin.
you cant imagine how warm my heart is right now.
and thank you for being his mother too.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

make way for zombies

just reminiscing about the "zombie bike ride" aenon took part in last year.
i guess it is happening again, so all you p-towners, the 2nd annual zombie ride is on again.
thursday night.
what a novel idea.
scaring all those straight laced folks.
love it.

sorry fish, i stole your photos.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

love the bowl

hunter and i go here every tuesday, as he gets out early from school.
i get the bowl with chicken and cabbage, and of course,
the baja sauce and a big handful of chopped cilantro.
he gets the monster burrito. he eats it all. so do i.
something about watching a boy finish a burrito the size of a small dog.
makes a mom happy for some odd reason.
love this place, my new favorite. and it sits right next door to starbucks,
so a venti passion tea lemonade, 1/2 packet of spenda, tops it all off.
and if you need to know where it is?
its on marguerite, just past becker surf shop, by world market.

Monday, October 26, 2009

yay for craigslist

sold a bunch of furniture i can no longer tolerate anymore.
done with the traditional "lawyer" look.
loads of old, heavy and dark
antiques cluttering up my space...gone.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

weird mormon rituals

so hunter brought along his non mormon friend to our annual "trunk or treat". for us mormons this is just a rite of passage in october. just something that happens...and all over the church. we did it in murrieta, thousand oaks and we do it here. if i had to guess, probably happens everywhere there is a church parking lot. so fun to decorate the trunk or hatch of your car and hand out treats to darling little kids who's mothers are especially creative and good with sewing machines (its the "mormon" in us, i guess...although i resort now to purchases online...if you think dane has a giant shower cap on, he does not...he is "toad", a giant mushroom, i think). i especially get a kick out of handing out "regular size" candy bars. love the reaction on those kids faces when they see these giant bars in my paper mache pumpkin. indeed a treat...for me. and remember how fun it was as a kid to run around an empty cultural hall? (where did that name come from anyway? ever think of the interesting names we have for things? like primary and seminary...isnt that a catholic word?) my kids still have memories of accompanying me to set up for some big activity...then allowed to run freely in the huge space. i remember too as a kid going with my mom to set up for the annual "bazaar" where handcrafted items were actually sold. imagine that.
this activity last night was a little different. had the trunk or treat, hot dogs and then a fear factor activity all outside. plenty of yucky stuff was eaten. dane broke down and cried when they were "swallowing" live goldfish (i am still not sure if they were actually eating them or not). he was watching so bravely, then came up to me with big tears running down his face. traumatized. feeling for the poor goldfish, with its "eyes wiggling as it's going down a throat", he said. he was thoroughly disturbed, big time. the big boys liked this,
but not my sensitive little one.
very interesting though, to explain all of this to dylan, and try and prepare him for what we were going to do. he was baffled. had never heard of this, or seen anything like it in his life. i think he liked what he saw, and realized there is a lot of good old fashioned fun to be had in the parking lot of a church, with a bunch of little kids running around in circles.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

so excited to take the ACT

eden has an asian friend at school who calls her the "white asian".
says he cant believe she competes with him so competently.
she has told me about several occasions where she ends up with better scores than they do.
they must roll their eyes, and go home confused.
i think sometimes she is as surprised as they are.
so when we got an asian salad at mcdonalds awhile back,
the sticker ended up on this girls forehead.
i think she was born in the wrong body.
she's taking the ACT today.
let's see if she can get a better score than kari hill (another smart asian in a white body).

Friday, October 23, 2009

tired of losing and other traumatic events

a silly face from hunter just fixes everything.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

best buds

when thinking of the most darling little boy in the whole world,
you might imagine i would think of one of my own sons.
i think of sammy.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

sometimes i wonder

sometimes i wonder if these kids will ever get thru 11th grade.

7:15 am church parking lot after seminary
liz is trying to put on her boot, all the while driving a car. runs into the back of edens car as they are leaving.
7:17 am
hunter calls me laughing about the whole ordeal. liz is crying.
4:50 pm
liz comes over, telling me about her plan to buy her dad an ice cream cake from cold stone
with the words, "daddy i did something bad" written on it (not a bad idea).
chuck still does not know. i cant keep a straight face.
4:55 pm
liz goes outside with eden with a can of flat
(if you are going to do this, shouldnt it be gloss?) spray paint to hide the evidence.


and why is this so funny to me? what is one more dent in edens car, she has already had a maniac of a "friend" kick her car in, and now the parents are threatening to sue US for giving their son a ride home when he missed the bus (excuse me?) good thing i am married to a mean lawyer...had a flashlight thrown at her car (yes, a BIG dent) by a van full of drunk guys, when she and some friends were out t-peeing one night (k, theyre never doing that again)...and last but not least this little fender bender from our sweet liz. all of this of course, too has happened in the course of about 2 months. i told liz she should count her blessings that she hit our car, and not some expensive mercedes in the parking lot, owned by some uptight man. still doesnt get her off the hook, but if i had to pick who i was going to run into?
it would be eden.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

chicken soup for the soul

so it was a little cloudy yesterday, a perfect day to stay home and make soup. so i went to pavillions and purchased an organic whole chicken and promptly put him (or her) in the magnalite pot handed down to me when my grandmother, thelma huntington barton passed away. i love this pot, for the simple reason my grandmother owned it. she was famous for cooking roasts in this aluminum vessel...a red meat and potato girl she was. i still remember her making steak for my grandpa in a scorching hot cast iron skillet. and he loved it barely cooked. only real men eat their steak practically raw.
and he was a real man indeed, dirty cowboy boots and all.
a bit of nostalgia on the stove.
the nostalgia continued as i proceeded to cook this lovely chicken until it literally fell off the bone. carrots, celery and onions were added. i then spooned in the plump dumplings, a recipe from my other grandma, orlene larsen henrie. a recipe which took me awhile to master. i still remember every time we would visit her, she would make this delicious dish...because she knew it was my favorite. she also made these wonderful sugar cookies filled with raspberry jam-with a little cut out on the top. i wish i had gotten that recipe from her too...she had all of these memorized and cooked all of this in a tiny, neat kitchen with painted pale green cupboards and formica countertop. she lovingly raised five children in this kitchen, the size of my bathroom and didnt complain once. now she was a real woman.
so i hope my grandmothers were looking down on me yesterday with little smiles on their faces, knowing the love i have for them in my heart.
knowing i am a product of their strength and integrity.

and the soup was delicious.

grandma henries dumplings

1 cube butter
2 cups water and a little salt
boil this mixture, than dump in quickly
1 cup flour
stir vigorously, then add
2 eggs
stir more, then spoon into hot soup, NOT boiling
cook 15 minutes.

Monday, October 19, 2009

london calling

so i think emma's summer trip to italy has lit a fire in her. she's got the traveling bug.
that's why i was not surprised when she announced to us at breakfast
she had been accepted into the byu london study abroad program.
so excited for her, so proud of her and know she will just eat it up...just trying to figure out
if i can go that long without seeing her bright smily face.
hmm...maybe a trip to london for ME should be worked out too.
just want to see kensington palace, as you know,
i have a thing for princess diana.

yes...i think so.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

more water polo...

hunter should actually sign up for the wrestling team, cuz that's all he did this weekend...along with being the recipient of some underwater kicks to the lower back, a few attempted stranglings and some punches to the head while being held under water (he is number 4, white cap). luckily some of these players were thrown out of the game-for a moment. they focus on him because his is one of the sturdiest boys on the team, and plays "whole set"...smack dab in front of the goal. but hunter the gentleman he is, did not retaliate. i, the mother who teaches things she probably shouldnt, advised him after the game, to kick back, and hard. however, he did what his coaches have always told brutality on any terms.
i think i got taught a lesson here with his example.
so i had to watch while hunter got beat up in the pool. and emma screaming to the refs, "theyre pinching him, theyre pinching him!"

Saturday, October 17, 2009

i made it

i made it through the long list of ladies who wanted this craft, that craft...who paid and who hadn't, who paid but didn't show up, who showed up and didn't pay, who didn't pay and didn't show up. brought out containers and containers of buttons, and papers and glitter. made several-seemed like hundreds of trips to my car. then went from one table to another teaching multiple classes all at one time, it seemed. organized and over organized all the supplies and more supplies. i was the extreme multi-tasker. very confusing indeed. however, i did it, and had a lot of fun in the process. and to any ladies out there i short changed,
hit me up and i will make it right.

Friday, October 16, 2009

surprise surprise

i awakened in the middle of the night (well actually about 10:30) to find eden by my bed...talking to me with a big smile on her face. i was looking up at her in a sleepy stuper wondering why she was so animated. i wondered why she was up after i knew she had gone to bed over an hour ago. she was even dressed. and what was she talking about? she was going on and on about what i do not know. i was definitely in a very sleepy state. then i realized it wasnt eden, was i dreaming? a hologram maybe?
it was emma!
what was she doing here? she is in utah...but wait she's standing right here in front of me.
my brain could not process this information.
come to find out, she and her friend kelsey decided to just drive home for the weekend. just got in the car and started driving. just glad they arrived safely. i guess they saved me all the worry while they were driving for like 10 hours.
then, right as i was figuring out it was her and coming to my senses, barely coming out of my altered state...the phone rings. what? the phone never rings at 10:30. i pick it up (mind you i am still completely sleep drunk and feel as if i am in the twilight zone) is quinn. he casually starts talking to me about the mission tesoro game, offering his condolences (he was actually just rubbing it in-his kids go to mission. i got you figured out, quinn)...emma still standing there by my bedside, big smile on her face...i am still under the covers. i have no idea what i said to quinn, but i think i remember saying i didnt care about the game, and was probably rude. so quinn, if youre out there, i am sorry.
you caught me at a really weird time.
i was in the twilight zone, and your phone call made that experience all the more bizarre.
now i know what it feels like to be on drugs which make you hallucinate.
so, now we have to plan some fun stuff to do and fit it all in with my enrichment night tonight...and i am not a spontaneous person.
at all.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

cant get a break

i waited to post today, until after hunter's water polo game against mission. another heartbreaker with refs that suck (excuse my language, but i just had to say that)...they actually would have honestly won the game if it hadn't been for refs who thought this was all a joke. even as the game went into overtime, and the clock was ticking, they let a player from the other team stand on the floor of the pool, not for just a second...for a LONG TIME...the refs just looked on, as the opposing team had the illegal advantage. unbelievable what these adults are teaching these kids. where's the honor? where's the justice? stuff like this makes me really upset. these kids playing their hearts out and these "responsible" adults there to make the game fair. what a joke.

so there's my rant for the day.
maybe the next game will be better, but i highly doubt it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

should i stay or should i go?

maybe it is a disneyland day today, unfortunately without emma, who is the ultimate disneyland girl. i get what she has been saying all these is the perfect escape. i need an escape right about now. might even take dane out of school, and with aenon here it is a perfect excuse. so even though it is raining like crazy here, i think we may venture out into the storm to take in the magic kingdom.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

my version of happy bones

got out all my hidden away ornaments...and this is my version.
love this tree.
now i need a tree for every holiday.

happy bones

so my friend claudine is super creative and loves to make amazing stuff. she is an interior decorator by day, crafter incognito by night. she came over last night to discuss some last minute enrichment business...brought these darling little halloween ornaments she made to try out on my amazing glitter shinoda halloween tree...(which by the way, shinoda is sold out of). we sat there and giggled with delight as we placed these delicious doo dahs on the branches.
this new calling has ignited my creative side again. maybe the Lord really does know what He is doing when he calls us to positions in the church. maybe i needed this outlet. maybe i needed to spend my free time going from joannes to tall mouse, with a pit stop at michaels, then back again. maybe my basic math skills needed to be refeshed...
i'll have to think about that one as i am sorting through piles of cash and checks and keeping track of a huge tedious list of names of ladies who signed up for craft night this friday.
wish me luck.

Monday, October 12, 2009


so i occasionally chat with an old friend from high school on facebook. he is old now, just like me. attended culinary school and has lived an exciting life as a chef and manager of many five star restaurants in new york and new orleans. now he lives in napa and seems to only cook gorgeous food and live quietly with his girlfriend on their little "farm". he even has chickens. i talk to him once in awhile, we reminisce about old times and he also makes nice comments about my kids photos. he says aenon looks just like me in high school...says that almost every time we chat. says she has a "spark" about her. funny how he can see that through the internet and through a still photo. very interesting indeed, because it is completely accurate.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

my photogenic canine

i have 2 dogs who i really love. the one little scotty dog i love visited maria at petsmart. she is so nice and clean now, has a precise "scotty cut", clipped by her skilled groomer who loves and adores her too. she says she is the "best and most beautiful scotty i have ever clipped" her cute little mexican with all of that, you would think i could get a decent photo of this darling little black girl.
she is awkward when i get the camera out, doesnt listen at all and looks like a black, hairy rats nest. doesn't know how to even look at the camera, let alone pose.
she is totally un-photogenic, if that is even a word. she just does not photograph at all.
then i turn to toby...first photo i snap.
he works the camera, every inadvertent pose is amazing.
he is beautiful indeed.
i knew there was a reason i picked him.
what a pair.

Saturday, October 10, 2009


which one do you like?
dont worry, i got both.

Friday, October 9, 2009

worth a thousand words

well, by the looks of hunter, everyone out there can probably figure out what happened last night at hunter's water polo game.
first league game.
tesoro vs dana hills

go get em titans.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

if the shoes dont fit...

so hunter has always liked basketball. always thought he would play in high school, even though his water polo coaches strongly disagreed and gave him a lot of grief for his lofty idea. he always thought it was a good idea, until yesterday. he finally listened to the voice of reason. realized he was biting off more than he could chew, and also realized where his heart is...and it's not basketball.
life is full of hard decisions, and realizations and a-ha moments and lots and lots of mistakes, and i should have done that or i should have done this.
you know what im saying.
hunter had one of those epiphany's last night. we talked about all of the pros and cons...talked and talked, played devils advocate for awhile...then it came down to words of wisdom from coaches he looks up to and admires. ones who know him, and his capabilities. ones who have his best interests at heart. coaches who know HIM, and know him well. maybe the writing was on the wall, when he put a water polo tank top on to go to basketball practice.

well, he finally listened, paid attention to what his gut was saying and learned a lot in the process. and sometimes those who have a little more experience than us, really do know what they're talking about, and usually if there is some hesitation on our part...maybe we should listen to that too.

but sometimes we have to learn the hard way. basketball.
its all good.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

strength in numbers

when i stand in young women occasionally, to recite the young women theme, i always get confused with the recent changes they have made. i always get tongue tied in one way or another. being a previous young women leader, ive got it down-pretty much, memorized it long ago. however, they have added yet another value...virtue. another word to get tripped up on. but well worth the tongue confusion.

to highlight this new value, our stake young women had an activity centered around the newport beach temple. they were featured in an lds magazine recently. this made my heart feel good...and eden even got her picture taken!

hats off to liz forrest!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

waiting in the closet

when i hung up this little blue shirt about 6 years ago, i didnt think much about the day when it would be brought out and buttoned up on dane. yesterday, i actually remembered i had put it in the back of his closet, and ran upstairs to retrieve it...all of this a miracle in itself. see, i am not known for my organizational skills and the hoarding of worthwhile items...i save things like wrapping paper, piles of worthless buttons and old birdcages.
ok, now you know.

so there it was, patiently waiting for its day to be lovingly worn...and it slid on his little body perfectly. it even had a little stain on the front, probably cupcake frosting or a brownie smudge from days long ago. dane was happy, big smile on his face...and i was so proud of myself, that i actually saved something of worth, and could actually put my hands on it precisely when it was needed, not a week later.
it was magic.

and thank you ginger for tirelessly making scouts fun for 3 little boys. your service is greatly appreciated. your diligence acknowledged.
your organizational skills admired.

Monday, October 5, 2009

i like this


Sunday, October 4, 2009

token blonde

well, i think i know what it is like to be the only one who is different, in a sea of uniformity. last night i was the token a wedding of a former associate of craigs. she is a darling, smart, ambitious asian girl who married an asian man (hes an attorney too)...amidst their asian families, friends and co-workers. then there sits me. one of a handful of caucasian folks...the only blonde in the crowd. really. i was way ok with it. didnt bother me one bit. kind of fun to be amongst these beautiful, poised and diplomatic people,
and this BEAUTIFUL wedding.
picture this...pelican hill resort, newport beach, ocean view, green golf course, gorgeous, gorgeous huge (im talking HUGE) bouquets of pale, dusty pink and white roses, orchids, iridescent sea shells, hydrangeas and some sort of subtle little baby pink lily...and perfect weather. the ceremony was underneath this tiled domed large gazebo indian looking thing...theres probably a more sophisticated word for it that i dont know...then after the ceremony, we were brought up to a little grassy area where tiny appetizers were brought around on silver trays (tender beef skewers, little spoons of macaroni and cheese and these little smoked chicken wrapped in phylo things...theres another sophisticated word i do not know), and a full sushi mini buffet was in full swing. black chopsticks too (not the cheap ones you have to rub to get the splinters off)...i was so proud of myself...could wield those chopsticks like a pro. there were beautiful silver and glass containers full of flavored waters (cucumber, strawberry and lemon) perfectly lined up glasses and a full bar. why do beautiful events like this just make me melt, make my heart beat faster, put a smile on my face...i LOVE a beautiful party. love the detail. love the presentation of it silver trays, and glass water dispensers...i really should have been a wedding planner. next life.
so thats just the beginning of the festivities...
then we are brought in to this gorgeous ballroom...all the while looking over our shoulders at a full ocean view and breathtaking sunset...a full band is there, blasting LOUD music...not really into the whole band thing, i will say again. especially when you cannot get away from it. loud music in a closed area is annoying. however, that said, the band was good (still not as good as glenns band). now the party was really getting started. we were seated at our beautifully...actually an understatement set table, full of lots of silverware and goblets of all shapes and sizes. the table alone was delicious to look at. then, in the center of the tables...those huge arrangements...commanding the room like giant pillars of sophistication...the orchids dripping down the sides, hundreds of clustered roses packed in there (just how i do it, proud to say)...breathtaking to say the least.
now comes the food part. three courses no less. scallops cooked with a rich, have no idea whats in this sauce and "baby cilantro" sprinkled on the top, a gorgeous asian pear salad with these really interesting broiled cherry tomatoes...then came a filet of beef and lobster tail...and a perfect little square of some yummy potato thing. perfectly done and perfectly presented. love the whole waiter thing too with the guys all dressed in black running around. three waiters would all stand around the table, with their plates in hand, then they would swing the plates in front of us, all at one time, like it was synchronized. never been to anything like this in my life, i will admit. i think i might even want to be one of those fancy waiters. i think that would be fun. maybe im too old though. dont really have the "look".
oh, and the wedding cake...a marbled, perfectly textured cake with a tart raspberry filling, and white cake (my personal favorite) with a strawberry cream. that was perfectly done too.
cant even imagine what this whole thing cost. probably could have fed a small country or purchased a home for someone in orange...i am unable wrap my head around those kind of numbers.

and to top the night off. craig walks outside (to this candle lit courtyard complete with a full bar and roaring fireplace, deep seating all around it) to get away from the music...unknowingly steps in some drunk guys barf. must have been the same color as the carpeting. my first reaction was, "oh no...all that beautiful food gone to waste."

perfect time to go home.

other than that, in a word...sherri, your wedding was PERFECT.
i wish you and larry a perfect marriage...