Monday, December 31, 2007

Day 1

We woke up at 4:00 am and went to the hospital. Doug is saying bye bye to the mama bear.

15 minutes later a baby was born...

And she was perfect!

Baths are heaven!

She'll do.

Day Two

"What am I supposed to do with THIS?"

Daddy's little lady.

"I am approximately the size of a cell phone."

"Ew... Oh... Fingers... yum!"

Day Three

"It's good to be born."

"Told you I have eyeballs."

The mama bear and her new cub

So tired.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Our Princess

Sick of hearing about my pregnancy? Well, it’s your lucky day! I am pregnant no more! Food is no longer the most complicated relationship in my life. Finally, I can kiss my husband the way he deserves to be kissed—long and slow (and not the way a nauseated claustrophobe would). I feel great! And deflated.

Kiana is so beautiful! 6 pounds 7 ounces. So little!

She didn’t want to emerge from her cozy mommy incubator. The doctor had to use a vacuum to pull her out. I’d never heard of the vacuum being used for a c-section before. I felt kind of proud of my stubborn little girl for her unique entrance into this world.

She doesn’t look a thing like Ryan or me. She has golden hair…er… fuzz on her head and has really fair skin (I’ll post more pictures when I get home from the hospital). Upon closer inspection, I realized who she DOES resemble a little, though: Keiffer Sutherland... in a cuter softer way.

This would make sense. Ryan and I had rented season four of 24 approximately the time Kiana was conceived. Whenever I watch 24, I tend to have incredibly vivid dreams about terrorists and violence. Jack Bower must have worked his way into the nighttime mix without me even noticing. You know Jack… he is sneaky like that (don’t tell Ryan).

On a tender note…

I love my baby so much! My maternal instinct kicked in a little sooner this time… which I hear is common with second babies. I feel bonded to her in a special mommy/daughter way. I hold her against my skin with her head resting under my chin and just breathe her in. She smells like heaven.

I love watching Ryan with her, too! He is so madly in love with her. He even went to the store last night just to buy ribbons and bows for her hair (I didn’t even ask him to).

I can tell Kiana knows and loves me, too. She looks at me with adoring eyes and whimpers when we have to part. What a special connection.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

My Misspent Youth

I was a good girl. An insanely good girl.

I never tasted beer. I never wore a bikini. I even liked my parents. Where did I go wrong?

My wild weekend nights were spent at the stake dances rocking out to “YMCA” and dancing with boys with sweaty hands, pepperoni faces, and whose breath smelled like peanut butter.

My friends and I stole a shopping cart once—the frosting on the cake of a most excellent toilet papering job (we returned the shopping carts a few days later).

I think I got a “C” on my report card junior year…maybe.

I kissed a lot of boys, many of which knew the true meaning of a “misspent youth.”

And then there were the “freeze-outs.” I would write in more detail about the freeze-outs, but I don’t want to give my lurking father a headache.

But that was about the extent of my bad behavior as a teenager. I was a good girl. An INSANELY good girl.

But maybe I should have taken advantage of my youth and screwed up a little… seized the day a little. I should have gotten that nose ring I always wanted. I only had that bikini-worthy body once. And maybe I should have stayed out till 12:30, a whole half an hour passed my curfew, just to show my parents who was boss.

I have no excuse for bad behavior anymore. I am endowed. The judgement lobe in my brain is completely developed. I am a mother. I am a republican.

And quite frankly, I had an amazing time as a teenager... even as a straight arrow. I don’t regret most things about my youth, especially not those stake dances. Where do you think all of the boys I kissed came from?

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Bethanyism (Beh.thah.nee.ism): N. A reflex Bethany cannot control. An action Bethany takes that may cause others to smack their own heads. The act may be considered adorable or repulsive depending on the angle in which the action is viewed or of whom it is viewed by.

EXHIBIT A: Bethany has just finished a saucy plate of lasagna. She utilized her knife and fork in proper order and liberally employed her napkin.

Still, Bethany has managed to leave the table looking as though she has just had a marinara sponge bath. Tomato sauce is in her hair, her eyebrows, and in wedged in the most intimate crevices of her belly button. How the belly button happened is anyone’s guess—after all, Bethany is wearing a turtlenecked unitard.

EXHIBIT B: Bethany has emerged from the shower. She has wrapped herself in a towel, walked to the kitchen to get a glass of water and to the bedroom to put on a fresh pair of jammies.

Little did Bethany know, however, that while shaving in the shower she also managed to sever a particularly juicy artery above her ankle. Blood is now splattered across the carpet, walls, and all over the toaster oven. Bethany has yet to notice the mess or figure out why she is feeling so very dizzy.

Anyone who knows me well is now nodding their head violently. They have witnessed a billion Bethanyisms first hand.

Pregnancy seems to be a good excuse for my inevitable “isms.”

Yes, I did drool three tablespoons of saliva all over the pulpit while giving the opening prayer in sacrament meeting, but pregnant people have overactive salivary glands. I thought everyone knew that.

Sure, I left my curling iron on and only remembered the infraction while on the airplane to Utah. But pregnant people forget stuff. Duh.

Inside I know the truth, though. Regardless of my motherly state, I would (and have) drooled at the pulpit. Pregnant or not, I spill stuff and do ditzy things. And I get large pieces of meat, roughage, and farmyard machinery stuck in my teeth on a regular basis.

But in my own defense I would like to say that pregnancy does magnify these Bethanyisms.

When spilling things nowadays, I have a far larger surface area to desecrate. Also, the placenta produces a sort of magnetic chemical that attracts substances, particularly drool or concoctions that stain, right to the stomach area. Betcha didn’t know that.

This morning, post-shower, I was blow-drying my hair. Suddenly, I felt something tapping at my leg. I looked down, only to see that my two year old dabbing away at a bleeding knick on my leg with a little piece of toilet paper. I thought it was so funny, and sad, that he took it upon himself to nurse my wound and spare our carpet from another “Bethanyism.”

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Night on Main Street

If I had a choice to live in any city in Texas, Grapevine would be the place.

Oh wait... I already live here. Lucky me!

It is tiny, and cute, modern, and antique, clean, and quirky. The people are kind here. I feel safe here (unless I am on the road. Holy "dog-eat-dog!"). I just really like it here.

Last night my boys and I went to see the "beautiful lights" on Main Street.

This picture was posted solely so you can "ew" and "awe" over how cute and pregnant I am.

Here I am with the people (and fetuses) that I love the most!

Doug, calculating if he could "take" this elf down.

The mama bear and her cub.

Friday, December 21, 2007

House Envy

We live in an apartment. I feel apologetic when I tell people (who have homes) this… like I did something wrong. I am tempted to add “but we were homeowners a few months ago… I swear. Do you want to see pictures?”

But that would be tacky.

Shoot, maybe I say it once and a while.

After our abrupt promotion to Dallas, we decided to rent this year. I thought it would be a relief to not have to worry about weeding, fire ants, and broken dishwashers.

I miss fire ants.

I watch HGTV. I am usually eating ice cream out of the carton at the same time.

I visit the Lowes website sometimes… just to see how much it costs to add crown molding to a room that doesn’t exist.

I check out weekly.

I miss my house.

We use to have a house. Want to see pictures?





Thursday, December 20, 2007

I might be biased, but...

Veggie Tales: the best babysitter (tranquilizer) in the world!

My Christmas Angels

While visions of sugar plumbs danced in his head... Doug fell out of his "big boy bed"... and failed to wake up.

"I know I already asked for a lot of stuff... but I NEED just one more thing..."

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Why I am Not Going to Go Crazy this Time

I am not sad that I will not be having a “normal” delivery. Who in their right mind would want to do THAT, anyway? The pushing, the panting, the staring at your own exposed “area” in the mirror until the baby emerges. Nah, a c-section is fine by me. I did it before and I can do it again. The surgery itself is the least of my concerns.

If you are related to me, then you may know that I went a little crazy after I had Doug. I thought I was prepared. I thought knew the drill.


And everything was great at first. Post-surgery pain was a cake-walk compared to nine months of morning sickness. I felt on top of the world after giving birth.

In fact, I felt so good that I decided to leave the hospital early. True, a doctor had just sawed open my body, yanked out a few internal organs (and 8.5 ib baby), scraped out my insides, and stapled me back together… but I wouldn’t let that keep me from being the best damn mother in the world.

We went home and I began my motherly duties. I had a hard time accepting help from my mother or husband. I was Super Mommy. I didn’t need naps. I didn’t need pain meds. I just needed to do what came naturally… mothering.

But mothering didn’t come naturally. Breastfeeding was not working. Doug was frustrated. I was crying.

I am failing.

And I didn’t love Doug the way that I was supposed to—the way I had been told I would. I thought he was cute. I liked him. But he was a stranger to me.

What is wrong with me? I am a horrible mother and a horrible person.

Then I caught some sort of flu. My old friend, Nausea, never left the building after all. Sneaky booger.

I am never going to feel better. I am ALWAYS going to feel sick.

I am so tired.

My body hurts.

I can’t do this!

So, I had a few panic attacks… in front of my husband, in front of my mother, in front of my mother-in-law. I felt so naked. So embarrassed. So sad.

I was another victim of post-partum hormones. It is real. It is awful.

Needless to say, I overcame all of these problems. With the help of medication, rest, loving families, and priesthood blessings I was restored to full sanity and health after a few feverish weeks.

And I learned that I did indeed love my son and that I was a decent mommy after all. Thank heavens.

I survived.

And I will use that experience to strengthen the next. I am going in to this delivery with realistic expectations. I am going to stay in the hospital as long as I want. I am going to start my Zoloft before the doctor can even say “It’s a girl.” I am going to let my mommy and my husband take care of me. I am going to love my baby in the way that I love her, and not the way I think I am suppose to love her. And I will be prepared for the inevitable bumps and bruises along the way.

The Title is the Hardest Part

My mom told me that I have been blogging more than usual lately. Her statement was merely that, not implying that my serial blogging was anything to be ashamed of. Nonetheless, I felt sheepish.

Am I flattering myself by posting my thoughts on the internet—like somehow my life is interesting enough for others to enjoy?

No, I daresay that my life is fairly lackluster. Actually, one of the most exciting thing that happens to me each day is when I log onto my blogsite and someone has actually posted a comment.

Someone has read my thoughts. What I have written struck a cord. Wa-hoo!

But I shouldn’t admit that. I should act too cool to care… like I was just posting for the sake of posting. Like it wouldn’t matter if anyone read it.

What I am trying to say is that, while I do use blogging as a journal, I really appreciate those that read my blog—even if you do it because we are related and you feel obligated. Still, it makes me feel good about myself. It makes me feel out of the ordinary. So thanks!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Traditions

The Robinson/Hall family always eats Oyster Stew on Christmas Eve. I love traditions and I love my family, but…

Oyster Stew!

Am I a bad person if I have no intention of following through on that tradition? My mother might answer “yes” citing that some things are sacred. But really, I am not fond of oysters (especially in stew form) and my husband is allergic.

So, I need a replacement Christmas Eve dinner; one my children will look forward to, one that I will not have to plug my nose to ingest, one that will not send my husband to the ER.

What about Christmas Eve fajitas? Christmas Eve omelets? Christmas Eve Hamburger Helper? Or, to part way honor the family tradition, some sort of stew not containing a squishy gritty fish.

I will follow through with most other family traditions. I am most attached to Salmon Mousse (a delicious cream cheese and salmon dip), putting straw in the manger after a good deed, a Christmas visit to the AMC, card games, and reenacting the nativity.

Ryan and I have also a few new traditions to add to our little family’s repertoire. For example, Santa will visit our home, but only to stuff stockings.

You see, we don’t want Christmas to be the celebration of Santa Clause. No, our children should understand that Christmas is all about… MOM and DAD. Santa should not take credit for the cool bicycles, video games, and Barbie Dream Houses. MOM and DAD did it. Mom and Dad, Mom and Dad, Mom and Dad… but mostly Mom.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Baby Weight

First of all, I would like to say that I know I am not fat. I am pregnant. There is a difference. To call myself fat would be insulting to myself and to others who might indeed be a little fat. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

But I think I am fat.

Not really, but kinda. Ever since college, I have been concerned with my weight. Maybe it was because I had roommates with eating/exercise disorders. They would yack all day about squats and carb-free tortillas. They would pull at the skin at their waist and say “Oh my gosh! I need to loose weight! I am so fat!”

What fat? They were shriveled and shrunken. They would NOT be a good source of energy if their airplane crashed in the mountains in the middle of winter and the only food option was cannibalism (though they would be a good low-carb option).

These girls were ridiculous, I know, but slowly, their self-deprecating words took a toll on my psyche. If they were fat, then what was I? I had a normal body, but had never, till then, thought that my body wasn’t acceptable.

No, I did not go to any extremes to loose weight. I am not interesting enough to develop an eating disorder. But I have become extremely conscious of my body.

When I got pregnant for the second time, my main concern was that I’d never be able to get my body back to a fighting weight. Truth is, I still fret about that. The weight loss journey seems like an uphill battle this time. With more baby weight to lose and two children needing my undivided attention, how on earth will I have time to exercise? How do most mommies do it?

I guess it’s not really about the weight. It’s more about the way I feel about myself. I want to feel sexy and pretty again (and I will never again stoop to a dramatic haircut to attain that feeling). I want to look like I belong next to my toned and ridiculously handsome husband. I want to be a “hot mama.” Logically, I know that sexy, pretty and thin are not synonymous. Obviously, logic isn’t always my driving force, though.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

My Husband is a Good Sport

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Doug has made the realization. He now knows that he and Mommy are not just one being, united in mind, soul and purpose. No, he is capable of his own desires, actions, and conspiracies. Woe.

No longer the round-faced angel baby I once knew, Doug is now one of those children. You know, the one’s who scream “NOOOOOOO!” at the top of their lungs for 45 minutes at the grocery store... The one’s who know exactly the right pitch and decibel level to vocally kill all birds flying within a two mile radius... The one’s who run full speed into busy traffic because it is funny to see an extremely pregnant mommy sprinting after them like a spooked hippopotamus.

And Doug can cause some serious damage. After several of our important household items disappeared, Ryan and I began a search and rescue operation. After hours of no success, Ryan had a last minute inspiration. He picked up our stereo speaker and gave it a little shake.

Clinkedy, cloppedy, thud.”

There was definitely stuff in there. Unfortunately, the entrance to the speaker was only dilated to a three. If you’re not up on pregnancy/labor lingo then I will be more specific. Nothing would be coming out of that speaker any time soon unless surgical measures were taken (I would know). Being that the speakers were relatively new and expensive, we decided to cut our losses.

Two days later, I had a brilliant idea. Doug and I played a game called “Find what is Hidden in the Dark Scary Cave.” Doug’s hands were just tiny enough to make it through the small speaker hole. We cheered exuberantly as he retrieved the following items: Ryan’s keys, a small flashlight, a long wooden snake, a finger puppet, several fruit snack wrappers, a very malleable stuffed animal, some screws and nails, a small ball, a tatertott, and the kitchen sink... Okay, the tatertott was a fabrication, but everything else was really in there.

My child is turning two. Just in time for the second baby to arrive. Great.

Today, after another disheartening tantrum, I closed myself in my room and took a few deep healing breaths. Then, I retrieved the squealing Doug and put him bath tub. Sure enough, the warm water caused him to forget his squawking. I laughed as he lifted his leg to the tub’s rim and began “shaving” his legs. Perhaps it is time that I begin taking my showers with the bathroom door locked.

I lifted my squeaky clean toddler out of the tub and wrapped him in a towel. The towel was immediately cast side and naked Doug dashed into the living room where he ran around and around in circles whooping and hollering. No doubt a few nude somersaults would have been added to the performance if I hadn’t grabbed him. A toddler without a diaper is a dangerous thing.

I diapered him and put him in his jammies. Granted, it was only 11:00 a.m., but the jammies were for my benefit. Honestly, who could be mad at a child in form-fitting soft jammies. I hugged my little Naughty and kissed his soft cheeks.

Every night, Ryan and I sneak into sleeping Doug’s room to make sure he is warm enough and to kiss his little forehead goodnight before we go to sleep. Doug looks so gentle and innocent...even after a full day of screaming, breaking things, and refusing to eat anything except fruit snacks.

Lately, after saying goodnight to my sleeping boy, I have gone to my own bed frustrated. Not with Doug, but with myself. I then pray that I can be a more patient mommy and more understanding of his developmental stage. He is still my little angel, perfect and pure. I love him so much that it hurts. I want to do better.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Ready to Hatch

“Looks like someone is nesting!”

Ryan’s proclaimation upon entering out home a few days back was nothing short of… true. I am in nesting mode.

Cleaning the toilet with a toothbrush, a toothpick and undiluted bleach now takes precedence over other important instincts, such as breathing, eating, and Grey’s Anatomy.

I organized the walk-in closet the other day. True, rearranging large boxes containing clothing, books and lead is no job for a woman in her ninth month, but Ryan was not home. It HAD to be done that very instant. Besides, no one else could possibly rearrange the closet in precisely the right way. I am the only one. I AM PREGNANT AND IT MUST BE DONE MY WAY… for the baby’s sake, of course.

The main focus of my recent hours has been getting the nursery ready. Since Doug and Kiana will be sharing a room, I’ve had to find common ground with colors. I chose Autumn colors (because Autumn is the best season in the world ever) and denim. My mother-in-law and I have been working on the bedding and I started painting wall hangings for above their beds. I am going to buy some Norman Rockwell prints to top everything off (I will post pictures when everything is ready).

Basically, I am just excited not to be pregnant anymore. And a pleasant byproduct of “not being pregnant anymore” will be a new baby.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Romney Speech

I liked what my husband had to say about the Mitt Romney speech...

"Speaking post Romney speech, I thought that he gave a very moving speech. It was a magnificent reminder of the role religious faith must play in government and public policy. If nothing else, I hope people not of the Mormon faith saw that Mitt is a man who will be true to his beliefs in spite of any power or position that could be gained by denying them. That he will act on faith because this country was founded and built on the principals of faith. And most importantly he will fight to keep God in the forefront of our countries political landscape."
-Ryan Douglas Lee (smart man with cute bum).

I personally don't think the speech will boost Romney in the poles--people who don't like Mormons are not likely going to change their minds--but I thought the speech was well-said and important.

Mitt Romney represented our faith well.

I am glad that Romney did not address specific doctrine. I don't think it would have been appropriate for him to do so. But I hope his speech prompts people to do some research ono their own. I would love people to know the true doctrine of the church and not the falsehoods they see on HBO.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Glass Booth

This is the first year of my life that I am actually interested in politics. I listen to NPR. I watch CNN. I pay attention during presidential debates. I have an opinion and can hold my own in a political discussion.

Does this mean that I am a grownup?

Does this mean that I am smart?

Much to my astonishment, I also found out that I am a republican. I’d always assumed that I was a democrat because I am a Robinson. Robinsons are democrats. I liked telling people that I was a democrat because it shocked them. At BYU, it sometimes angered them. I found this fun.

However, upon telling others that I was a democrat I just prayed that they wouldn’t ask me why. I didn’t really know what it meant to be one and I didn’t have the attention span to find out.

Perhaps encouraged by my husband, or disgusted by the over-liberal ladies on The View, I took it upon myself to discover what I really believe.

I now understand the merit of democratic views and think that it is a pretty perfect system in an ideal world. However, this world is far from ideal. Thus, I sway to the right.

I won’t go into my political beliefs, but I will say that this is an extremely interesting and important election coming up. I have put a lot of thought into my priorities and who would best represent my family as President of the United States.

A tool I found interesting was You take a short quiz and then the website tells you what candidates most closely aligns with your beliefs. I was surprised by my political match. I will probably not vote for him.

Here’s why: I find him incredibly unattractive. I could put this aside if he had a redeeming personality, but he doesn’t. I don’t like how he conveys his ideas. He is gruff. I wouldn’t like our country’s president to have poor people skills. We need a diplomat.

Luckily, my second-best match is a well-spoken okay-looking human being. He might be my choice.

On a side note, tomorrow Mitt Romney is going to give a speech about Mormonism. Do you think this is a good idea? I will be interested to see how this will affect his campaign and the way my religion is viewed in this country.

Monday, December 3, 2007


I am a bum person. I like bums. If you've ever been friends with me, related to me, or once dated me, then you have likely been on the receiving end of a bum pinch, a good-natured spanking, or an atomic wedgie (or a “Melvin” as they are called in Utah). Lucky for me, I am married to one of the cutest bums of all time (hi Babe).

I just like bums.


While at the U of U vs. BYU game, an extremely annoying Cougar fan, upset by an unfavorable call, stood up and screamed heinous words at the referee. His malignant word usage and offensive sportsmanship was enough to make me decide that he and I could in no way ever be kindred spirits.

To make matters worse, the enraged fan leaned over the railing to scream his obscenities. This was a BIG problem because I was next to the railing. The fan's ginormous fat stinky bum was aimed directly in my face. I wouldn’t usually remark on the size of aroma of someone’s hindquarters except for the fact that this man was obnoxious and hateful and did I mention that his bum was in my face?

On a more pleasant note, Huggies sent me a sample newborn diaper. Oh my heck! It was so little! It was so cute! I totally forgot that newborn bums are so little and cute! It made me extra excited for Kiana’s arrival.

It also made me realize that Doug’s two-year-old bum is HUGE! How did I not see this before? I compared Kiana’a diaper to Doug’s diaper and decided that potty training MUST happen immediately!

And if Doug’s bum is huge, then my bum must be colossal. And if my bum is colossal, then the “super fan’s” bum must have its own zip code, weather system and at least three McDonald's restaurants.. The thought made me dizzy. So, I stowed the newborn diaper away along side the pink baby clothes and baby blankets. No more bum contemplating for now.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Things that I Love (Part One)

On the plane ride home from Utah I sat quietly (in seat 33C in case you were curious) and drank my coke. I thought to myself “geez, this coke tastes good.” And it did.

I love airplane soda. Why is it that coke always tastes better several miles above the earth’s crust? Is it the clear sacrement-sized plastic cup? Does the altitude somehow magnify the sensitivity of one’s taste buds? Do the airplane ice cubes add a pleasant flavor to your drink? (By the way, on Oprah I learned that airplane ice cubes contain an unusually high amount of bacteria. I told Ryan this and it ruined his life. He no longer drinks airplane soda. I just choose not to think of this while drinking my icy coke. Bacteria shmackteria)

While sitting in 33C, and enjoying my coke, I thought upon other things that I love… things that other people might think strange… things that make me the woman that I am. Namely:

-Q-tips. Few things are as satisfying as a successful ear excavation... but I shouldn't have told you that. That is gross.

-Cattle Guards. A Robinson family tradition is saluting every time we drive over a “guard.” I was shocked to learn, recently, that not everyone does this. They should…out of respect for the guard (and the cattle).

-MAC makeup. I don’t know or care whether this product is actually better in quality than other products. It just makes me feel cool when I use it. I feel superior to those who do not wear it.

-Celebrity gossip. Who is dating who, who is in rehab, who has a bad haircut...

-Throwing stuff away… but I already went into that.


-Looking at amusement parks. I don’t actually have to go in the park to get a thrill. I beg Ryan slow the car down every time we pass one. I look at the roller coasters and imagine how much fun it would to ride them. It’s almost as good as the real thing. Talk about a “cheap date.”

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

I rarely blog about books because I usually don't read other people's posts about books.
But this book I MUST write about because it was excellent. I will NOT be donating this book to the library.
It is about a nine-year-old whose father died in 9/11. It is about grief, joy, family, love, heartbreak...
I found it disturbing and delightful and extremely clever. I sobbed the last three chapters and then had to go in Doug's room and snuggle with my sleeping angel.
Read this book (unless you are easily offended by a little sex and a few bad words--which I am not). It will change your life.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Replacements

Monday, November 26, 2007


Evidence that I was indeed on vacation last week and wasn’t just neglecting my blogging duties:

Ryan and I came home from Utah with over fifty extra pounds of luggage than when we left with—most of the weight accounted for in blankets.

Nothing says Utah and family like a load of beautiful homemade baby blankets. I couldn’t be happier! Hours and hours and hours of work have gone into making sure that my baby, Kiana, is the most well-insulated baby in Texas! I suspect, and hope, that a few more blankets are on their way, too.

Even though the blankets are not intended for my personal use, I couldn’t feel more loved. Thank you to my mommy, my mommy-in-law, and okay…I’ll admit it… I put a little man-power into one of the blankets myself.

A few more pictures:

Oh look, the Good Year blimp flew over the stadium! Oh wait... it's just me looking very pregnant.

Go BYU! Notice all of the red Ute fans in the background. Yeah, they lost. They are pathetic.

The Lee clan. If you look carefully, you can see my belly button sticking out. Que embarazada!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Joy of Throwing Things Away

Oprah recently did a segment on hoarders—people who compulsively collect mass quantities of junk. Hoarders get a high off of purchasing products and collecting things that they don’t want or need. Eventually, they bury themselves in their own junk. I twitch and squirm at the idea.

I don’t like “stuff.” I get my high off of throwing things away. I visit the local clothing-drop religiously, I donate a paperback or two every time I go to the library, and I almost like it when things break so I can be rid of them forever.

One item in, one item out: a philosophy to live by. Every time I get a new shirt, I donate an old shirt. I will never be able to fill a whole walk-in closet. I am kind of proud of that.

One might conclude that I am a very organized person. I love storage containers and storage systems. While not a “clean freak,” I am relatively tidy (as much as one can be with a Tasmanian toddler in tow). But I wouldn’t consider myself organized. On paper, maybe sort of, but mentally, I am a jumbled mess—a scatter brain. Perhaps ridding my self of all excess “junk” is my way of making sense of my chaotic internal world.

That’s why I find it difficult to properly observe the Sabbath Day if the house is a mess. I just can’t feel the spirit if the dishes are piled in the sink and blocks are scattered across the house. And every time I lose something important, my first impulse is to clean and organize. Cleaning helps me feel less anxiety about the lost item and usually I find the item in the process.

I love receiving presents…insanely, actually. But when I get gifts that I don’t want or need, I have an intense mental battle. What is the proper etiquette for handling presents that you don’t love from people that you do love? Is it okay to throw the present away? Is there a set amount of time that you are required to have that item in your possession before you turn it over to the Salvation Army?

I am not anal… I don’t think. I just like having a simple life—free of “things” that only complicate it further.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Kick the Bucket

While it has never been medically proven, I am pretty sure that I was born with only 45 out of the 46 standard chromosomes.

I am deficient of chromosome # 17: the shoe chromosome. Unlike 99% of my female counterparts, I really dislike shoe shopping. It registers on my hate scale right up there with bra shopping and grocery shopping.

Don’t get me wrong, I like shoes just fine. I just have a meticulously tedious formula for which a shoe purchase is acceptable—easy-on/easy-off, sassy, comfortable, and relatively neutral in color. Plus, shoes are expensive! The opportunity cost is too high. One pair of shoes=three cute shirts=one week of groceries=100 Taco Bell 7-layer burritos. Buyer’s remorse is inevitable.

I have been known to go years without making a single shoe purchase (athletic shoes don’t count. I go through those like water.) But the time has sadly come…

My current winter shoes decided to surrender to the chameleon banquet in the sky today. I was doing a little off-roading with Doug and his stroller, when my shoes coughed a little, looked at me kindly, and then croaked.

“Is that all you got!” I screamed. I shook my fist angrily and cursed the day I bought the pathetic pair of Sketchers.

Okay, so the shoes did give me six years of selfless service… but if the shoes had any integrity at all they would not force me to do the task I hate above anything… including vacuuming gigantic spiders off of our carpet.

I am not thankful for shoes today.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Not My Shirt

Is there anything more glorious than wearing other people’s clothing? Well… maybe a few things are… but just a few.

My very stylish friend, Megan, loaned me a bunch of maternity clothes. They are great for several reasons. First and foremost, I didn’t have to purchase them with my own money. Secondly, well… I did not have to purchase them with my own money.

No really, it is great wearing other people’s clothing because it’s like experiencing the world in another person’s shoes (literally and figuratively). You are wearing something that you may not have noticed on the rack yourself, but feel strangely invigorated in. You see yourself differently. You feel beautiful. You feel happy.

That’s why I miss having roommates—although I’m not sure that my roommates miss me for that very same reason. Thanks to the five wardrobes I had to select from, I don’t think Ryan ever saw me in the same outfit once during our whole courtship.

I love wearing Ryan’s clothes, too. Especially his socks… but mostly cuz it drives him crazy when I borrow his socks (he has an unhealthy attachment to his socks). I like wearing his tee-shirts, too. As mentioned earlier, I love how his shirts smell like him and how they fit over my swollen belly. It’s fun.

I would not like it if Ryan borrowed my clothes.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Pseudodysphagia: the fear of choking

Pharmacophobia: the fear of taking medicine

I had my driver’s license before I was able to successfully swallow a pill. I would put the pill in my mouth, take a sip of water, sense the pill at the back of my throat, and either a) cough the pill across the room or b) vomit.

I spent years battling this phobia. I was probably the only ten-year-old in the world who would ask the doctor for a shot instead of being subjected to a few weeks of amoxicillin.

When a shot wasn’t an option, and I had outgrown the bubble-gum flavored syrup, I would gnaw away at the prescribed pill bit by bit—a torture that often lasted hours.

Katie, my high school bff, suffered a similar disorder. We decided to face our fears together with a bottle of Breath Assure tablets. Time and time again we failed… but at least our breath smelled amazing for weeks.

The scrutiny of my peers and family members didn’t help the situation. When my grandpa would visit, he would make me watch him swallow his 20 daily pills with one swig. Like, somehow, seeing him ingest a handful of pills would miraculously cure me of my malady.

Finally, I took my first pill by washing it down with one of my daddy’s thick chocolate malts. I felt as though I had climbed Mt. Everest. It took months before I could swallow a pill using anything thinner than a V-8, but at least I had triumphed over my inner demons.

I am still not completely free of my phobia. I felt a little faint when my doctor prescribed me prenatal vitamins the size of footballs. I admit that a few of my morning sickness episodes bent over the toilet were due less to my nausea than to my reaction to a pill clinking against one of my teeth or teasing the back of my throat.

But today, while swallowing my daily allotment of pills, I felt grateful that I was able to do so. It would take me days to gnaw away at just one prenatal vitamin... and who has time for that?

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

November 6th

Today I have so much to be thankful for. I had my doctor’s checkup and we set a date for the c-section. I will be having my girl on December 28th! That is a week and half earlier than we planned! Hooray! Ten less days of bodily torture and ten less days till I get to meet Kiana!

To celebrate, I went to the hospital and looked at the brand new babies. Oh my heavens! They were so little and so perfect. What a nice reminder that there is an actual child growing inside of me and not an evil parasite whose only purpose is to squish my internal organs, blimpify me, and drain my body of any hint of energy. No, she is an actual perfect human being.

I watched the new babies squirm and wiggle as the nurses washed them and wrapped them in warm blankets. I stood next to a new daddy and spent a few minutes rejoicing in his hour-old son with him. Six pounds and 14 ounces. It was a spiritual experience seeing a new baby through the eyes of a proud papa.

Since Doug was a c-section, Ryan got to meet him almost 45 minutes before I did. I wish I could have stood next to Ryan while he gazed at our baby boy for the first time. I wonder what was going through Ryan’s mind as he watched the nurse bathe our son. I wonder about Ryan’s expression as held tiny Douglas in his strong protective arms. I bet it was amazing.

I can’t believe how soon our lives are going to change forever… again. We will have another child—half me and half Ryan. I wonder what she will be like. Will she have my eyes and my temperament? I hope that she has Ryan’s nose and Ryan’s kindness. I know, however, that she is going to bless our lives more than we can possibly imagine. She is an angel. I love her.

Monday, November 5, 2007

The Dead Sea

I just got back from the outlet Mill’s Mall. Once again, I dodged the countless booths of middle-eastern peddlers hassling me to try their amazing Dead Sea Salt scrub, their red jewelry cleaner, and soothing aroma wraps. I avoid these people at all costs.

They get me every time.

I am not one to be guilted into buying a product. Just because they clean my wedding ring or make my fingernail shiny-smooth doesn’t make me feel obligated. No, it is more like I am hypnotized into buying what they are selling.

You see, I loooooove their middle-eastern accents. Especially the women’s accents. They speak so softly and gently. They pronounce their words so poetically. It gives me the chills. It makes me feel dizzy. It makes me want to buy what they are selling.

This, teamed with them gently massaging Dead Sea Lotion into my palm is a recipe for a disaster… we’re talking “I’ll buy everything on your cart even if I have to sell my first-born to get the money” disaster.

One time, I left the mall with a new set of nail-polishing products for my sister. When I got home, I looked at my shopping bag and thought “Why did I buy this? She won’t want this.” So I tried to take it back. No sir. A no return policy. I tried to reason with the salesperson, but what could I say? “Excuse me, but you enchanted me into buying this stuff!”

Ryan thinks that I’m crazy. He said that those beautiful musical accents have no influence on him whatsoever. But one of my Christmas presents from him last year was a Dead Sea Salt Scrub—so I call his bluff. They got to him, too.

So today, November 5th, I am thankful for making it out of Mill’s Mall without any grooming products that I don’t need. I had to plug my ears and sing a Barry Manilow song at the top of my lungs every time I saw a peddler eying me… but I did it. I made it through the gauntlet.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

November 4th

Today I am grateful for a husband who lets his wife sleep.

All of the sudden my body has needed twice the zzzzs it once did. I am tired... to the point where sleeping has almost become a competative sport for me--Extreme Sleeping. Eleven to twelve hours a night and a 2-3 hr. midday nap. Serious business.

And my husband has forgone any hint of sleeping-in for the last several months so I can get a few extra minutes of shut-eye. He even let me sleep in on his birthday. And I am grateful! And tired. I think I'll go take a nap.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Thankful November

Following the good examples of my fellow bloggers, I will also write one thing that I am grateful for each day of November.

Today: Hamburger Helper

Ick! I know. I use to judge people who purchased such products. I would eye their shopping cart—filled to the brim with Top Ramen, frozen burritos, Hot Pockets, and Hawiian punch—and feel oh-so superior. My cart was loaded with fresh produce, whole grain bread, low-fat milk, lean meats, and ice cream—the diet of champions!

No more. I hate cooking! Actually, in real life, I love cooking. But I am STILL afflicted with morning sickness. Luckily, the barfing has subsided. The aversion to food and cooking and grocery shopping has not.

So I welcome any prepackaged, dehydrated, frozen, sugar-coated, processed, and "Just add lard and stir" foods into my life. As long as it takes under 15 minutes to prepare and I do not have to think about it before, during or after its consumption I am golden.

So thank you Hamburger Helper! No doubt it will be a brief affair—a nine-month stand—then adios amigo. Till then, I tip my hat to you.