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Monday, July 20, 2009

What you may want to watch... Maybe...

OK, so I am backlogged on an entire month+ of events that I will get to shortly. I just wanted to share some things I recommend viewing. Netflix is my best friend. It is cheap and I get to see tons of movies I wouldn't otherwise. I like movies, so this is a good thing for me, especially as we don't have TV.

On to the things you should see:

Number 1:

John Adams (The HBO miniseries)

Being that I love Revolutionary War and colonial history, I was very interested in seeing this. Admittedly, I didn't know as much as I thought I did about Adams. This was well written, well acted, everything you expect. It really left me wanting more. I actually was pretty sad when it was over. I had no more story to look forward to. It, of course, ends when he dies so there is not much left to show. Seriously though, I loved it. I have actually started reading the David McCullough book it was based on.

Number 2:

The Women

No, not the new one. I haven't seen it yet, but I can guess now that I probably won't like it. It didn't get great reviews, but I will give it a try. No, no, I am talking about the 1939 George Cukor classic. I watched it again recently and one of the tings that I really love about it is that, unusually for the time, there were no men in the film. At all. But there is a cast of wonderful female actors in their prime, Norma Shearer, Rosalind Russell, Joan Crawford, to, quite literally, name a few. It is a true comedy gem. Yes, there are some odd cultural things, but I think it has stood the test of time!

Number 3:

Bleak House (The Masterpiece miniseries)

I thought this was a pretty good adaptation of the Dickens novel. It is one of his lesser known works and it is different from his other works. The multiple story lines weaving in and out are intriguing and make for a rather suspenseful watch. Be careful of the many plot twists in the story. I love the portrayal of Esther. Spot on. You won't be disappointed!

Number 4:

Slumdog Millionaire

I think I may be the last person on Earth to see this film. I quite enjoyed the unique approach to the story. Heartbreaking and heartwarming all at once. What more could a girl ask for?

Number 5:

Not One Less

A Chinese film by the director of the haunting "Raise the Red Lantern." This film is decidedly more upbeat, but still there is a bit of heartrending sadness in it. A 13 year old girl is hired to substitute a class of younger children for a month. The teacher admonishes her that there should not be "one less" student when he returns. She struggles with her new role and when a boy leaves to work in the city in order to pay for his family debts, she goes after him and tries everything she can think of to get him back. A very subtle film with a happy ending.

As an aside, the lead actress, crazily enough, attended BYU-Hawaii.

Number 7:

Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day

This film was different than I had expected. Better, actually. I wouldn't consider it to be brilliant film making, but it was quite charming and a sweet little story about how two women unexpectedly change each others' lives over the course of a single day.

I think I may have forgotten something, but I think 7 is a good number to end at. I will be back soon. As long as I don't melt in this heat! Whew!


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

It's Grandma!

When Cecily saw this picture, she said quite distinctly, "It's Grandma!"

Yes, in Hollywood, age doesn't seem to apply much anymore (at least in certain circumstances) and Sheryl Crow looks great and very happy as a new (ish) mom. And yet, I couldn't help thinking that Cecily was partially right. Crow, at age 45, adopted this sweet little boy. An age at which, well, she certainly could have been a grandmother.

This is also not to mention that my own mother had me when she was in her 40s. It is hard for me to imagine the energy it must have taken my mother to work full time as an administrator, while also being a mother to 6 kids (four of which were 6 and under). I have discovered, very distinctly, how much I am not like my mother. Heck, I am tired and stressed enough having only two. Despite being a "young (fun) mom" I feel run into the ground every day of the week. Age is not everything!

I think my mom must have felt, from time to time, how different her situation was. Imagine the time I came home from school and told her that she was the same age as many of my classmates' grandparents. I bet she felt good about that, right?

Things have changed a bit. The average age of a first time mom has gone up. Even among our LDS circle, I am the youngest mom (at least comparing mothers of 2 and 3 year olds). Even still, it doesn't feel too strange. I am not too far off. Plus many people are having kids well into their 40s. There is no longer a "set" age for these stages of life. They very so greatly.

Maybe by my 40s I will be a grandmother, and I will probably look it according to Cecily's standards, but being a mother to a toddler? Probably not, I don't have that much energy.

PS: I think my mother has always looked younger than her years. The comparison to Sheryl Crow certainly agrees with what I have always thought.


Saturday, June 6, 2009

Cordelia is 2!


Can you believe it? I sure can't.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

June is Busting Out All Over!

No, this is not about the film "Carousel" but it is probably my least favorite of the Rodgers and Hammerstein films. The domestic abuse theme of the story doesn't hold much appeal for me. (A slap never feels like a kiss! Ha!). At any rate, I digress...

Can you believe it is already June? The year is almost halfway over and I am feeling sort of melancholy. It is so odd, as it is the time of year that used to bring great happiness. School is getting out this week and the summer vacation starts. It feels really odd. I am contemplating returning to school in the fall. It actually fills me with a bit of dread! Being a student hasn't always been my forte. I feel I need a bit of change though, and hopefully this will give me a bit of what I am lacking.

Summer has increasingly become my least favorite season. The heat, no AC, the general blah of it all really gets to me. Perhaps it will get better or worse when the kids are going to school and being able to spend more time with them and vacation and all that. Then again, the stress of a vacation is in the parents' hands. Nothing is carefree any more, is it?

I am just in awe of it all though. One more school year until my beautiful redhead will be an attendee and now we have a few mere days until my baby is two. Where has the time gone? Honestly it is just slipping away.

Yes, I am scatterbrained.


Thursday, May 28, 2009

For your viewing pleasure...

an Easter slideshow!

Easter was fun and Eliza came. I was really nice. The second set of pictures are from the Saturday McG Easter party.


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Oh Ye Poor Neglected Blog

I don't know what the deal is with me. I go through periods of blogging a lot and then nothing. It sure has been a whole lotta nothing lately. I may just forego pictures of recent (or not so recent, ahem, Easter) happenings, but they may appear soon. I will likely be just starting up again from the here and now.

Last weekend, we had the pleasure of seeing my brother and his darling wife for the first time in many moons. I am so grateful for that pleasure. They are a lot of fun to be around. My brother, of course, is always himself and he sure picked a sweetheart of a wife. She really just fits right in with our family's craziness. We made a quickie visit to CALM and just spent a bunch of time eating and playing games. The things we seem to do best, I think!

We also saw Star Trek, totally not disappointed in that one. It was awesome. So many Easter eggs for the fans yet enough broad appeal for those who claim not to even like the franchise.

I will be back. Soon.



Monday, May 11, 2009

A Motherly Day

This is my fourth mother's day and it has been about the same as any other. Simple family meal, no gifts or anything. I am really OK with that. I think it is wonderful to show gratitude for the mothers in your life, but I find the holiday becoming increasingly extravagant, just as any other minor holiday! Ah well, I prefer simplicity.

The highlight was Cecily getting up to sing with the primary at church today. Mostly she just looked around and then appeared to say "you" and "do" at the very last lines of "Mother, I Love You." It was awesome.

Happy Mothers' Day!


Monday, April 20, 2009

March Review

March wasn't too eventful, but we did have some fun. There was a lot of nice weather and some flowers. Here are a few highlights:

We had a playgroup outing to CALM. It was a lot of fun. Cordelia loves Luke and followed him around quite a bit. The kids loved the animals. Cecily preferred the birds and Cordelia is a big reptile fan.

We had an informal baby shower for two (well, three really) ladies. I had a nice time. It was at a funky little coffee shop in town, which I had never been to before. As far as the pregnant ladies go, two have had their sweet little boys!

Then my sister-in-law, Shannon graduated from the accelerated nursing program. All of Nate's family came (practically!) and it was a lot of fun. Cecily had a great time with her cousin Clara as usual.

Wow, that was pretty exciting, eh? More posts are coming, including the Easter festivities. I am getting back into the blogging thing again. I have just felt so unmotivated lately. It is picking up though! More soon!


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

But all I have now are words and promises. I have been busy and sick. Yes, I am still alive and I have some updates ready to go. Stay tuned!


Saturday, March 28, 2009


OK, I always hate when people make my beloved books into movies. I always have to prepare myself for disappointment. Honestly, though this looks awesome! I love how the kid looks like Max and wears the wolf suit. I hope this is good!

Here's a link to the trailer.


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Hello All! And some movie reviews...

Hello everyone! Sorry I have not posted. I don't know what is keeping me from posting, but I have procrastinated posts on our CALM adventure and Shannon's graduation among other things. They are still in the works, I will likely have them up soon!

I will, however post about movies!

OK, I finally saw "Twilight" and it wasn't that great. It was actually pretty blah and over dramatic. What was I expecting? I have read the books and they are enjoyable, lite fiction. The movie, took the teenage drama to a melodramatic and underwhelming level. I struggled to find some real semblance of character development. There was far too much staring into each others' eyes and saying whispery and slightly cryptic lines. It was not torture to watch or anything, but it didn't have the "this is really silly" guilty pleasure feel to it like the books have for me. It was just silly.

One thing that really got me was Jasper's pierced look and fluffy hair, I couldn't help laughing each time he came on screen. I am sure that annoyed Nate! It also just looked to filtered and overly contrasted. The "look" of the film was also greatly distracting. Not to mention Edward riding the invisible unicycle carrying Bella though the woods. Now that was riot worthy. Shoestring budgets are great, eh?

Ah, well, what can you do? I will probably continue my sheepy behavior and see the next movie too, I can't help it.

The other movie I recently saw was "The Boy In the Striped Pajamas"

I hesitated renting this because I thought it would be yet another really depressing Holocaust movie. Yes, it was very depressing and about the Holocaust, but it was intriguing. Well acted, well written and different.

The story surrounds an 8 year old boy, Bruno, and his family as they move to the country. His father, a Nazi commandant, has new duties overlooking a prison camp. Bruno sees this camp, which he mistakes as a farm through his window. He is curious about the farm and the strange people there wearing striped pajamas. He manages to get out of his house compound and befriends another 8 year old boy, Shmuel, in the camp. Bruno tries to figure out the purpose of this camp and to determine whether his father is a good man or not.

The ending is a bit of a surprise and is quite sad, so be prepared.

One thing that I suppose bothers me is that everyone has British accents. They are GERMAN! At any rate, I found the performances of Bruno and his mother to be very subtle but stirring. Great film!

More soon everyone!


Sunday, March 8, 2009

Just Don't What To Do With Myself

Sorry for the lack of posting lately. It seems my life has been just a series of colds and a very lackadaisical attitude for me. At any rate, I have some more posts coming! Please stay tuned!

At any rate, yesterday, I left my husband and kids home yesterday (they were sick and it was extra early for the girls due to the time change) and went to church by myself.

It was really odd, I got to sit through meetings in peace and quiet. It was weird, no crying or yelling, running away, diaper changes, throwing up. Nothing! I didn't know what to do with myself. I suppose it was nice, but I honestly missed the kids being there.

I guess there is still a bit of time left for me until I will enjoy a quiet Sunday. I don't think I am ready for that!


Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Promise of Spring

As much as I love snow, after a couple weeks of it I start to get stir crazy. My kids have also been really squirrely and antsy. So I was pleased that the weather was nice today, crisp but not cold sunny but not super warm.

The girls played and I took some pictures. It was nice and they got filthy with the mud and such. That wasn't a big deal as it was totally worth the time and energy spent.

The first flowers:

Happy spring, though a few weeks away!


Hack Job 2: Revenge of the Scissors

This was about a week ago, at any rate, but here is the story:

I had made a quick search after the first encounter of scissors. Apparently, I did not catch them all. I have also learned that the kids like to tag team their mother sabotage.

Cordelia makes a mess. I clean it up. In the minute or two it takes to do that, Cecily has some scissors and is chopping away again. It wasn't too bad.

Here's the first iteration of the clean up hair cut:

I did some extra trimming:

It is very short but I think it is cute!

I suppose I have learned my lesson, maybe not Cecily though!


Monday, February 16, 2009

Happy Birthday, Cr... Cinderella!

I wanted to wish my lovely sister in law a wonderful birthday! Have a great day and make sure my brother treats you to a lovely evening!

PS. You are old. I get to say that for the next nine months or so!


Friday, February 13, 2009


I love to bake. It is one of my favorite hobbies, yet one that can be terrible for my waistline.


At any rate, Sunday I made some sugar cookies. "Cookie Hearts" is what Cecily called them. I made a double batch and sent some over to my sister who needed a bit of a pick me up. Generally, I just make a simple butter frosting, but my issue with that, is that it often is just too thick and rich for the cookie and ends up with a sugar overload. So I thought, why not a glaze? I took out my trusty Betty Crocker Cooky Book (more on that in a minute) and made a Browned Butter Glaze. The glaze was rich but not overpowering, very buttery with almost a caramel flavor. It went on thin and I was able to frost many in a very short time.

It is also very simple:

Melt 1/4 cup butter over medium high heat, until golden brown (the darker it gets, the more buttery it will taste). Add 1 cup powdered sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla (almond would work too). Color with food coloring. Add enough hot water to make a fairly thin glaze. Dip cookies face down and shake off excess. This should easily cover a batch of sugar cookies.

Central to my cookie baking is my Cooky Book. It was originally published in 1965. It contains the recipes of our most treasured family cookies (the best) chocolate chip cookies, molasses crinkles and many others. I am always finding new things to make from it.


A couple years ago, I was looking at the newspaper, and there was an insert that had a reprint of the 1950s Betty Crocker cookbook. As a free gift, you could get the Cooky Book! I had to look it up and check if it was the right one, as our original was missing its cover. I saw the sample pictures and pages and was certain it had to be it.

The holy grail of chocolate chip cookies:
It was! So, I told my mom and that happened to be what I got for my birthday. I highly recommend it. While it does include some oddities (Trix cookies, anyone?), there are some real gems in there.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

New Title

I was getting a bit sick of my previous title. It felt a bit silly. I am trying this on for size. If there is one thing I know about myself, I know that I am fickle. I get bored and I want a change! I find it very hard to represent myself in one way. I am not totally silly nor am I totally serious. I am not cutesy either. It is hard to find a balance sometimes with a website layout.

Let me know what you think. Bonus points for those who get the correct classic movie association.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Aaron's Birthday!

Last Thursday was Aaron's birthday and we had a little shindig on Friday for him. I can't believe he is already 9. I remember seeing him just after he was born and I thought that he was such an adorable baby. He is a bit quirky, but is a really great kid. I am proud to be his aunt.


New Layout Under Construction

I have a new layout and I am working on making it look good. I wanted something cleaner and brighter. I hope this will work for awhile.


Sunday, February 8, 2009


Growing up, I suppose you could say that my sister and I weren't exactly normal. I guess I do remember a bit of what was popular with our peers in the early 90s, but most of it we weren't really into. We didn't watch much television, but we did watch movies. Of course, we loved "The Little Mermaid" and Co., but next on our list were musicals. Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals accounted for most of them. We would drive everyone nuts on car trips with the repetitive verses of "Do Re Mi" an the like.

As I wish to indoctrinate my own daughters into the love of musicals, I have started them young. Thursday night, we watched the great MGM classic, "Singin' in the Rain." The girls loved it. Music and dancing filled the screen and they were entranced. They danced to the lively songs and laughed at the silliness.

I was trying to decide what part of the movies was my favorite, and I kept thinking one thing was, but then another bit came on. While the plot is pretty sparse, there are so many classic lines, gags and songs that it can be enjoyed by just about anyone.

As a kid, "Make 'Em Laugh" was always a highlight for me. This was Cecily's favorite, unsurprisingly. She just cracked up as Donald O'Connor danced, fell over and made silly faces.

I know I cannot force a love of good movies on my children, but I can encourage it. They will have more musicals in their future!


Hack Job: Or Cecily the Stylist

Last Sunday, while Nate was watching the girls, they hid in the bathroom and Cecily decided to cut her hair and also do Cordelia's. Cecily's was mostly isolated to the top of her head, which now includes a couple bald spots. All I would have to do is shave the sides and Cecily could rock the mullet!
This is an after my fix, her longer bangs just looked bizarre, so I mad them all short.

Cordelia got it all over. I ended up having to cut two inches off in the back, so no more pigtails for awhile.
Not a great picture:
After the fix:

I was pretty sad about the whole thing, but it is just hair and will grow back!


Monday, January 26, 2009

December Recap

OK, I am finally doing this. I don't know why I put it off so long or even why I feel obligated to do it. At any rate, here was our December.

It was mostly uneventful really. Nate was working on his projects as always and we actually got a lot of things accomplished before the holiday. I didn't take as many photos as I would have liked, but what can you do? The girls loved everything Christmassy. We went around to the lights around Bakes and it was pretty fun. We had lots of snow the week before and the girls had lots of fun playing in it and having "snow bites" (I have some pictures somewhere, but I haven't gone through them yet!)

Christmas came and went pretty quickly, as usual. Christmas eve was spent cleaning and then going to the McG Christmas party. It was much quieter than last year, not all of the children were there! Then we drove home through the rain and fog and had our traditional homemade Chinese food fest with my family. Then we read the Christmas story and went to bed. Well, I played Santa a bit before bed!

I think the biggest difference this year was that Cecily had an idea of who Santa was and she was totally shocked to discover all of the presents he had left her! She was a bit taken aback at first. Then, we did stockings and breakfast at Kirsten's. Next, everyone came to my parents' and did the big present unwrapping. As that was ending it started to snow! We left as it was coming down quite a bit. Then we had the big H family dinner at my in-laws. Most of them were there, I even my the elusive cousin Heather! I had to keep checking in to see if we would be able to drive home that night. I discovered that much of T-town had no power. We were able to return safely and without too much trouble, thankfully!

A couple days later, Leigh and Eliza visited and that was a lot of fun. New Years we spent at Kirsten's making caramel popcorn and playing games.

Then, Melanie and family came down and we had a second Christmas with them. It was a bit of a whirlwind, but when are the holidays not?

Here's a slideshow, I don't feel like copying and pasting codes at the moment!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hello, Mr. President!

No matter your personal opinion on Barack Obama, you cannot deny the historical significance of this day. I honestly didn't think that he would make it this far. I just hope and pray that he will be able to do something good as president and remain a good man. That is what you can do. Vote with your heart and mind and pray for the best. You never really know what will happen, what circumstances will fall upon a president.

I am feeling a bit proud of my country right now. Anyone can be something, anyone can be president. Just to see the hope and the reaction of people of all backgrounds today has been one of the best days in my "political" life.

Hail to the Chief!

PS: I will update soon. I have just been sick and tired and a bit depressed for the last few weeks, but the outlook is feeling brighter!


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