Saturday, December 31, 2011

Back Together

You'd think I'd be writing about my Christmas adventures (they involve puking and leading a choir... not the best combo...)  or perhaps some poignant thought about the close of 2011.  But no.

All I really feel like saying is this:

Remember this bit from back in '08?

Well, never mind that.

It's over between James and I.

Hugh and I are officially back together.  We've settled our differences and he is my Movie-Boyfreind once again.



(I know, I know.  You've missed me, right?  Since I always have such important things to say...)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Flow of Thought... RANDOM ALERT!

Dustin and I went, a couple weeks ago, to a four day karate course.  I thought I might die... it was so hard.  My legs have never been so sore in my whole life.  

I'm doing karate again, did you know?  Did you know, in the first place, that I did karate?  When Mac was about 9 months old I started.  I practiced until he was three years old and then I stopped until about three months ago.  Dustin started this style shortly after I did and he didn't stop.  He's a black belt.  I'm an orange belt.  It's really fun and very difficult and technical.  And it makes your legs SO SO sore. 

Brynja has recently started talking more... or jabbering more.  It's the cutest thing ever. 

Pretzel season is upon us. 

We refinanced our house and I'm fairly excited that, for the same payment we've been paying, I can now pay off my house 8 years earlier.  Flippin' sweet.

Mac is taking ballroom dance.  His first performance is next week and he's excited.  But I might be more excited.  I haven't really seen him dance yet.  Today he tried on his costume.  I asked him what it looked like and he replied, "You'll see next week!"  The stinker wouldn't tell me.  And he won't show me his "moves" either.  He's excited for us to have the whole experience.  He's so cute and grown up.  ♥

My mom is healing and getting better.  She deals with tiring more easily than she used to, but she's doing quite well considering what she went through. 

I wish I could hug my grandma and stay at her house when I go to Salt Lake.  I wish I could smell the scent of her, the scent of her home and of breakfast cooking in the kitchen. 

Today a thunderhead mood rolled into my heart and I was angry for inexplicable reasons.  Then it rolled away almost as fast as it came. 

I miss writing.  Or, rather, I miss feeling that unquenchable desire to write and create beauty with words.  I miss the sated feeling I always got from it.  I want to be that girl again.

We, after 7 years of living in our house, FINALLY painted the living room.  We also installed new bamboo floors.  Loveliness. 

I had my eye on a new couch since we finished the basement and took the upstairs couch downstairs.  I eyed it and eyed it for about eight months.  I actually had the money to buy it, but kept holding off.  Then in August I found a couch at a yard sale that's SO awesome!  It's from 1966 and I love it.  Teal colored and in near perfect shape.  And guess how much I paid for it?  $10.  Yep.  I saved myself $600 on the couch and paid for new floors with it instead.  Life is grand.

Ella and Rohan have been taking piano lessons.  Rohan was a little slower to get excited about it than Ella, but his enthusiasm has been increasing as he learns.  Ella took off like a shot from the start.  They are both doing so great.  Ella started on sharps today and she couldn't stop talking about how excited she was about that fact.  Adorable.

Dustin is the best husband ever.  Still.  In fact, I think he's like fine wine... gets better with age.  He turned 38 last month.  That's two years from 40.  I can't tell you how that trips me out.  I always thought passing birthdays would be no big deal, but I'm thinking that I had no clue because I was young and getting older was still awesome back then.

Choir Christmas prep is in full swing.  Maria helped me look at my music stash today.  She's such an awesome resource and an awesome friend. 

We need to expand our karate group.  We don't know exactly how, but it needs to happen.  Anyone who lives near me want to do karate?  Let me just interject (on my own monologue?  I think interject might be the wrong word choice...) and say that when I started karate I thought doing karate was lame.  My mom was taking it and I went because I seriously needed an outlet... I felt like I was lost in a sea of diapers, baby food and baby talk.  My mom said come, so I went.  I didn't expect to like it, but to my great surprise, I did.  This is not your run-of-the-mill karate style.  It's not a style full of HI-YA's! and tension.  We work on relaxing our bodies.  Can't really explain it, but if you're local, COME try it!  You might just like it.  And it's super cheap. 

I feel a hovering sadness at the outskirts of my awareness.  It's not always there, but, like a hummingbird, it zips in and out.  I'm not sure what that's about, but I am just noticing it.  It's like it just touches on my brain and says, "Hey, I'm here." and then goes away.  It's like out of the blue I almost burst into tears for no reason at all and then just as suddenly, I'm totally normal again.  I don't get it.

I sit here and wonder at the things going on in the hearts of people... people I love, people I just know a little bit, people I know pretty well, people I don't like.  There are things going on in my heart and head all the time that no one but me has any awareness of, like that hummingbird-sadness that flits in and out.  Everyone has something like that.  Everyone is hurting or fighting some battle in their hearts, and we all just walk around and act fine.  I watch my baby Brynja move through the world and she has none of that.  If she feels sad, she cries and tells me about it in her jabber-cute way.  If she's happy, she shows it with her whole body, galloping circles of joy around the house.  If she's mad, she screams and, recently, attempts to throw her fist at something.  When does that change?  What would the world be like if we just walked around acting out what was going on in our hearts?  Expressing it with our whole bodies, like babies do?  When do we start holding everything in and stuffing it in our physical shell? 

I don't know.

And I still have a problem with dinner.  We are still not friends.

I wish I knew my grandpa better.  He's still alive and I need to make more of an effort with him.  He's an aloof man who is not easy to get to know, but I want to try.

I wish that it could be winter without being so cold.  I'm pretty sure I'm not ready for this.

The End.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Recently in Clancy's Life...

My baby girl, Brynja, is so darling.  I marvel at the fact that she is 19 months old.  I wish I was better at taking pictures so I could share her charms with the world, but, for now, writing will have to suffice.  She has been my latest bloomer in the speech department.  Not to say that she's not communicating, because she most certainly is.  She has the most precious ways of expressing herself and telling us what she wants.  She hums and squeaks and signs, and very recently, has started to open her world even further by trying to use a few more words.  I swear that she tried to say "street sweeper" today as she and I giggled at the machine sweeping our leaves from the gutters.  She is my pal on these long days with the other kids in school.  We have so much fun. 

Just today we played with a plastic elephant and a stuffed armadillo.  We made them run like horses and I would try to make elephant noises.  Brynja thought this was hysterical.  She laughed her big, open-mouth laughed, exposing her new molars and her yet-to-be-I-teeth holes.  It's the cutest thing.  She laughs with gusto and gallops around the house like a joyful little horsey.  She brings delight to our home like sunshine warming the sidewalk.  I love her so much. 

Bedtime or nap time is my favorite.  As soon as I turn off her light and settle in the glider next to her bed, she snuggles her little head into my neck or chest and calms herself down.  Sometimes I sing her a song, other times I simply rock her and wonder at the love flowing between us.  It's like a force of nature that is impossible to resist.  Not that I'd want to resist it.  I just jump in and bask in the glow of that love.  I just want to squeeze her and never let her go.  I often feel a sense of loss as I lay her in her bed, the heavy weight of her small body taken from me and put down for her autonomous nap.

I get it now.  I really get it. 

People used to say to me when my other kids were small, "Oh... treasure this time!  It goes so fast.  Before you know it, they'll be driving and then off to college!" or something like that.  They said it all the time!  I'd smile at them through clenched teeth as I heard these words for what felt like the thousandth time.  They really meant well, but I just wanted to punch them or tell them to shut up.  They didn't know how hard those days were!  And they were hard.  Mac, in particular, was a challenging child, and I just couldn't wait for each day to end so I could see my little kids asleep, looking angelic and not fighting with each other.  (He definitely had his sweet moments too... I don't want to discount those, but I remember the challenging times best, it seems!)

I can't cite the source, or perhaps even the correct quote, but recently I heard something that went like, "Motherhood is full of the longest days and the shortest years." 

How true that is!  Each day can feel like an eternity, and then you blink and your oldest son, who used to be so full of challenge, is 11 1/2 years old!  What?  And my Ella is 9 1/2?  Huh?  My baby Rohan is 6 1/2?  How did that happen?

They were right.  It really does go fast.

And so, I hold my Brynja a little closer.  I ache when I put her down to bed.  And most of all I cry for my other babies, Mac, Ella and Rohan.  I look at theses big kids and wish so hard that I could hold them as infants just one more time.  I cry for that time that is gone from me.  If I found a magic lamp today, I'd rub it and wish for one day with each of my kids when they were small.

And so with Brynja, my last baby, I hold her tighter knowing that time will slip through my fingers anyway, but at least I know it this time.  I don't think the knowing makes it any easier, just more poignant. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Burrowing Cry

I keep sitting here, not sure how to start this, so I guess I'll just start.

In the wee hours of the morning (1:00ish?) on September 23rd, my mom, on a houseboat vacation with my two older siblings in Lake Powell, Utah, woke up to discomfort and a voice telling her, "This is a heart attack, you're having a heart attack."  She had already thrown up a couple times before she went to bed (thinking she was just sick but actually was experiencing angina) but, as she woke up more and started to try and rouse my dad and tell him what was going on, she began throwing up again. 

I wasn't there so I can only convey bits and pieces without much timeline accuracy, but I know that she continued throwing up many, many times throughout the night... 30 or so was a guess.  She had intense chest, arm and back pain and it was hard to breathe.

My dad was terrified and felt rather helpless.  You see, they were on this houseboat on a night with just a sliver moon that wouldn't even rise until about 5:30am., no spotlight and a VERY treacherous lake, twenty miles from the closest marina and medical help.  Lake Powell is full of unknowns under the water.  It can be a dangerous lake to navigate in the daylight, much less the darkest of nights with no light on the boat.  My mom relates now that my dad was trembling and he tried to hold her and offer her some sort of comfort.  I can only imagine the anguish that they were both experiencing.  My mom wrote up a summary of events as she remembered them.  I hope she doesn't mind if I put some of that here in my own record of things:

"I was pretty freaked out, panic was rampant for a while. [As time passed,]I got to a point that I saw a really cool mosaic of blues & blue-green looking spots that formed a spiral. It moved ever so gently & beckoned me... I thought with great clarity... "So this is what it's like to die from a heart attack" There was no panic at that point. It was a peaceful, resigned, calm place & feeling."

"I don't know how much time passed but I started feeling & then speaking out loud to Brayt "I CAN'T die on this boat" "I can't do that to these kids, my kids & grandkids."  I knew with certainty, at that point, that they would heap some kind of guilt on themselves about not doing something different... [so] I knew that I couldn't die on the houseboat. I asked Brayt to give me a [priesthood] blessing. He obliged & then later he felt like he should go consecrate some oil & do the full ordinance, so he did. Then when he said his blessing he stated: "I bless you that you will survive this night".  ...[and] something shifted after that. I was in agony for more than 8 hours and I survived the night. I didn't die on the houseboat.

My dad, in the retelling, says that he had so much fear as he tried to do something but felt so helpless.  He gave the first blessing without oil because he forgot to bring it, and later felt commanded by the Spirit do the full ordinance (as mom said).  As he gave her the second blessing, he told me that he felt the powers of heaven pour into my mom and felt the fear that gripped him relax.  He said it felt that it wasn't up to him now.  She was held by the Power of God.

Even still, the night was agony.  My mom said she kept looking at the sky, hoping to see some light, some signal of time passing.  She felt like it would never end.  But, as all hard things do, the night finally did come to an end.  Morning came and they got her on the power boat and to the ramp at Bullfrog Marina. 

Upon arrival, my dad ran up the ramp and found a Ranger sitting in his Jeep.  He asked him if there was a Clinic close by. 

"Why?" the Ranger asked.

"Because I think my wife is having a heart attack." replied my Dad. 

The Ranger asked where she was and my dad pointed to the power boat bobbing at the dock.  The Ranger, who happened to be a Medic, jumped in his Jeep, radioed for an ambulance, drove down the ramp, grabbed his bag and ran to where she was in the boat.  He, on the bobbing boat, started an I.V. of something, and then the ambulance was there and they were loading her onto the gurney.

She was taken to the small clinic at Bullfrog and was given some sort of pain meds and who-knows-what.  In short order, a life-flight helicopter crew arrived and, in Mom's words, "They were the BEST! Light, good energy, competent to the max & the let me joke with them & they seemed to get it! The pilot came in & asked "How do you feel about a helicopter ride?" Me: "That's probably the best part of this whole thing so far!" Pilot (laughing): "Now that's my kind of patient!" Whoosh..... off to the chopper..."

Mom was in a drug induced haze after that.  She remembered snippets of things... being unloaded from the chopper... flashes of the Cardiac Cath-Lab... the Cardiac ICU with no familiar faces around... and then seeing my dad (who had driven the five hours from Lake Powell to Provo, where she was taken).... and then my dad walking in the room again, followed by me.  My Dad had called me Friday afternoon at about 1:00 to tell me what was going on and that Mom was in a helicopter on her way to Provo.  I called Taylor and Lacy, my siblings, and then Dustin.  Dustin could tell I was rather shaken and suggested that I call my friend Rebby.  Rebby offered to watch my baby Brynja and pick up my kids from their bus stop.  I took her up on the offer and was on the road by about 2:30.

My mom was in the Cardiac ICU from Friday until Sunday afternoon.  Sunday they moved her to the regular Cardiac Floor (which was bustling and crowded... and her new room we not-so-lovingly called her "Harry Potter cupboard-under-the-stairs" because it was so small...)  I stayed in Provo the whole time and was at the hospital all day, every day until she was released on Tuesday evening. 

My dad and I took turns being the information liaison for everyone who was calling to inquire and send their prayers and love.  She had many visitors and love and prayers being said for her. 

Because she went so long without any medical intervention, she did suffer some damage to her heart, but it is improving and she is working to get her heart function back.  We learned after her surgery (where two stents were placed) that the problem was in her lateral anterior descending coronary artery.  This is the artery that is also dubbed "the widowmaker" because it has a VERY high mortality rate.  They tell us that it was 100% blocked by a blood clot that had developed on the stent they had placed there last yearHow my mom survived so long with such a thing and how she is currently doing as remarkably well as she is... TRULY a miracle.

As for my own experience and the title of this post... I had NO idea, in the midst of my own hospital "supportive role" experience, how taxing to my own psyche it was.  I thought my mom was doing fairly well on Saturday and Sunday, all things considered.  And she was.  She was not really eating, though, and battling nausea, chest pain (from Pericarditus, they think, but were never sure...) and drug-effects, among other things.  It was rough.  More rough than I realized at the time.  Monday rolled around and she showed such improvements from the weekend that I had a dawning understanding that she had been worse than I knew.  But she improved so much on Monday.  She started eating more, had less nausea and started walking more with her cardiac therapist.  Then Tuesday she was WAY better, even, than Monday.  It was an amazing transformation.  Her spirits were higher on Tuesday and we got word that she was most likely going to be released that day. 

As I, unconsciously for the most part, started to relax about my mom's condition Monday evening and into Tuesday, I began allowing myself to feel my exhaustion.  I felt like I had been a piece of cloth that was spray-starched into rigidity for support and suddenly someone poured water all over me, releasing the starch that was holding me up.  I was "puddley".  I had permission from the universe to be tired and, boy-oh-boy, was I tired.  I also felt like I was made of blown glass.  All my emotions were suddenly right at the surface, and I would shatter at a touch.  I worked at "keeping it together" to some degree for the rest of the day, but all I wanted to do was cry my eyes out in someone's arms.

My dear husband was at home with the kids these five days and trying to work and juggle schedules, etc.  He was anxious for me to come home, so on Tuesday night at about 8:30, I left Provo for my trek home.  It was late to be leaving, tired as I was, but I didn't want to stress D out any more than he was.  As I was driving, my tears, held together most of the day, were bursting to come out.  But to drive safely, I couldn't let them come.

I wanted desperately to stop at a friend's house who was on the way home, but the late hour and other circumstances didn't allow it. 

And so, I swallowed it. 

I know it was a mixed blessing to be able to do that.  I needed to not delay my drive any more since I would be home very late as it was, but I also felt like I really needed to cry.

But I didn't.

And the emotions burrowed.  They went subterranean and I can feel them there, like a splinter in my body. 

Did you ever watch a movie called The Holiday?  Cameron Diaz's character couldn't cry, try as she might.  I've felt like that ever since.  I do cry, just a little bit.  But then those tears just dry up as quickly as they came on. 

I did get some release yesterday.  My mom came over to my house to help me dip pretzels, of all things to do post-heart attack (bless her, but she saved me!).  In my gratitude for her help, I hugged her and said my thanks.  And I started to cry.  She hugged me for a long time.  She said sweet-mommy things to the child in me who needed comfort.  And I 'got it' in a way I hadn't yet.  A new level of settling in.  My mom so nearly lost her life.  She was spared by the power and grace of God and her own will that made the choice to stay.  She was here with me in my kitchen offering me comfort instead of me desperately seeking the slippery peace I would have been had she merged with the blue/green mosaic that was beckoning her on that turbulent night in Lake Powell.

My tears went underground, but my mother stayed, and I will wait patiently and in gratitude until those tears would like to come forth.

I love you more than words can express, Momma.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


To my dear Dad!  I love you pops.  I'm sad that you're away on this day, out in the oil fields where you are working your long long hours, but I'm so proud of you for doing what needs to be done, even if it means being away from family on your birthday. 

I love you so much.  Thank you for always being a support to me and my family. 


Monday, August 22, 2011

From the FB World

Facebook is a lovely little thing.  But it does have it's drawbacks.  I post little things that my kids, particularly Rohan, says, but there they sit, being stacked upon by all the busy-ness of Facebook (and occasionally I say something funny I want to remember too).  I'll never find them again.  So, I'm going to post some of those things on here so they are a little more accessible and easier to remember.  This might be a really long post, or maybe it will encompass several posts, but either way, I want them recorded.    Enjoy...

Rohan sees Brynja getting sleepy in the car, leans over to her to sing her a song and leans back to me, "Mom, I forgot that song, what's It called... 'Baby in a tree'?
Me: 'Rock a bye baby'?
Rohan: "Yeah, rock a bye baby..." and he leans over and start singing it to Brynja. So cute.
May 17 at 1:00pm

I owe a public apology to my daughter, Brynja Leigh. I wrongfully accused her of throwing my cell phone charger in the garbage, when really I just moved it into her room to listen to Pandora while I was cleaning one time and I... ahem... forgot.

Sorry, baby girl.
August 17 at 9:37am

Dear Tuesday,
You might be my favorite day of the week for the simple fact that you are not Monday.
August 16 at 3:39pm

"Today was more awesome then a shark high-fiving a bear during an explosion in outer space." ....Today hasn't necessarily been that awesome, but this quote had to be stolen from my friend, Dan's status. HA!!
May 17 at 1:00pm

Rohan declared that because it was SUCH a nice day, we HAVE to have a "pigNic"! He got out the blanket, spread it carefully, grabbed the basket I store plastic-wear in, and grabbed a handfull of pretzels. Then he asked me if I'd like him to make me a PBJ.

That's what I call a Motherhood Prize... Happy Mother's Day to me!
May 05, 2011

Rohan: Mom, why is it that farmers get to have all this lucky stuff?
April 25 at 5:53pm

You know your baby has three older siblings when she toots and then laughs while she looks up to see who's laughing with her.
April 19 at 10:05am

Dear Stranger Who Knocked at My Door-
You are weird. When you knock and get no answer, why do you feel like it's ok to open up my door and put a business card *inside* my house in my daughter's shoe asking me if I want to sell my car? I feel a little violated. Maybe I should lock my door at 10:30 am more often? Thanks for the heads up, crazy.

March 3 at 12:04pm

I gotcha this time, Dinner. HAHA!! I planned for the whole week and you're so done. I'll see you tomorrow in some split-pea soup.
February 16 at 12:19am

Rohan @ lunch says to me... Mom, you're just a little bit old.

Me... Oh? Just a little bit?

Rohan, in clarification... Yeah, just *barely* old.

February 10 at 1:09pm

Teaching my baby girl the fine art of sitting by the heater. She's so precious... and heat seeking.
February 9 at 8:39am

Just met a little girl named clancy. It was a little surreal, like I was observing some younger version of myself.
February 4 at 3:14pm

had to share from my brother's status update... Taylor, you're hilarious.

"...and ya know, dentists need to invent a keyboard to type on while your mouth is jacked open so you can still communicate!!! haha
Dentist - "oh, how are you doin, doin ok?"
Me - "hhcccchhhaaaaalllaaaaaawaancchhhhaa"
Dentist - "o good,... let me know if it hurts"
Me - "hhhrrraaaachchhahaaa
February 2 at 11:48am

Rohan: I can't believe its still snowy and it's already a different week.
January 20 at 4:09pm

Curse the traffic engineers who decided to change Holmes' traffic pattern. May your dogs get fleas and your cats throw-up on your pillow. And if you don't have pets, traffic engineers, I curse you to run out of windshield washer fluid while driving in Utah!
January 8 at 2:22pm

Rohan says to me, totally randomly: Mom, some day I want to go to a Massage Factory.

Me, stifling laughter: A massage factory?

Rohan: Yeah, you know... one of those places that you get a massage? And it's made of rock on the outside and the inside?

Still not sure what he meant, but man it was funny.
December 11, 2010 at 7:28am

Weather channel app on my phone told me that in @
Atlanta georgia, it was 57 degrees and that it feels like 57 degrees. I told to the phone to find my location..
1 degree, and it feels like -16 degrees. What an awesome day to live in Idaho.
November 24, 2010 at 11:54pm

Baby B cut two teeth, started crawling and took her first steps all in the same week.
November 22, 2010 at 10:01am

Rohan takes a drink of his water thats been in the cold car all night: "this is Brrrzing water, Mom!"

Me: Brrrzing, huh?

Rohan: Yeah feel. (He puts it on my hand) Brrrrr! It's cold!!!

I ♥ Rohan.
November 17, 2010 at 2:16pm

Dear Autumn, thank you for your boastful and lingering display. Do me one favor and tell Winter we could do without the preview of his cold, blustery gifts.
November 8, 2010 at 12:19pm

Rohan... "mom, are we nephites?"

Me..."uhhh... no, not really."

R... "so we're Samaritans?"

Me... "uhhh... no."

R... "so, what are we then?"

Me... "Gentiles?" (Are we?)

R... "but Samaritans talk like this, right? "


Cutest kid ever.
October 22, 2010 at 3:13pm

Hello friends.
Look at your status. Now back to mine. Now back to your status, now
back to mine. Sadly, your status isn't mine. But if you stopped posting
other things and made this your status, yours could be like mine. Look
down. Back up. Where are you? You're on Facebook, reading the status
your status could be like! Anything is possible when your Facebook
status looks like this one. I'm in a chair....heyahh!
August 25, 2010 at 9:31am

is a fan of her husband's broad shoulders and extremely tan arms.
August 23, 2010 at 10:39pm

Did you know that there is now a CHOICE of restrooms in my house now!? It's all so awesome.
August 13, 2010 at 12:31am

Brynja rolled over today! Took her time with that one, so Mom was extra excited.
July 30, 2010 at 11:29am

I'm thinking of starting my own business: Professional Time Waster. If you need time wasted, I'm your girl.
July 12, 2010 at 12:31pm

It's going to have to be just these posts for toinght. I'm totally falling asleep at the keyboard. Literally....

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


You know what phrase is strange?  "One tough cookie".

Why a cookie?  When cookies get overdone I wouldn't describe them as tough.  I can't think of any situation involving cookies in which I would incorporate the word "tough".  I would be thinking more along the lines of crispy, or blackened, or crunchy. 

"He's one crunchy cookie."

That just doesn't have the same ring to it, does it?

It would make more sense to say, "He's one tough steak," or something like that. Don't you think?

"He's one tough piece of leather."

"She's one tough Kevlar suit."

Just a passing thought as I was clearing the dinner dishes tonight...

Thursday, July 28, 2011

On My Mind

For some reason, today, I can't stop thinking about my Grandma Carol.  It's been five years, now, since she passed away.  I can't believe it's been so long since I've seen her.  I just realized, she would be 80 years old now.

She had a magic about her.  She moved through the world with such grace and love.  Anytime you were with her, she made you feel like the most important person in the world. 

I grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah.  I lived in the same house my whole life, the same house in which my dad spent most of his growing up years.  When I was a senior in high school, my parents felt impressed to move away to Idaho.  We were then about 200 miles from all our Salt Lake family, my grandma included.  Anytime I tell people this they assume that this was a really hard thing for me to do, moving my senior year of high school.  And to them I always say that if my parents had forced me to go, it probably would have been, but my dad would always say when the topic of me moving to Idaho arose, "We'll do what's right."  I was dead-set that the right thing was for me to stay in Utah and graduate with all my friends.  My friend Erin's parents offered me a place to stay, as did my Grandma.  I was sure I was staying.

Eventually, I had another experience, which I won't go into right now, that opened my mind to the possibility of moving.  I realized that I could make a whole new set of friends if I moved.  I could be the mysterious "new girl" for the first time in my life.  And I'm sure I was not conscious about it then, but I probably wouldn't have had a very easy time without my family around me.  I have an awesome family.  And so, I decided to move.

Why am I telling you this story?  Because today, in one of the many moments I felt my Grandmother's grace alight on my heart, I realized how blessed I was to make the choice to move to Idaho.  I think, had I stayed in Utah, that I would have lived, not with my Grandma Carol, but with my friend, Erin.  Her house was closer to everything... school, work, friends... and she was my FRIEND!  How cool would that be to live with one of my best friends?  (I didn't know at the time that living with friends has good points, but it is also full of challenges.)  So, I chose to move and with that choice came the opportunity of coming back to Salt Lake City to visit. 

From the time we moved in 1995 until the time my precious Grandma passed away in 2006, whenever we'd come back to Salt Lake (which was frequent) we would stay at her house.  For ten years I was graciously welcomed into her home.  And when I became a wife, she welcomed my husband as warmly as she did her own granddaughter.  When my children came along, she adored them and thrilled to have them in her house.  I know it's not easy to have small children in your house, especially when you're used to quiet, but her generous heart never faltered. 

When I was staying there for our family Christmas parties, I would help her in her preparations.  I would set tables, arrange relish trays, move chairs, decorate her Christmas tree, peel potatoes, cook hams, vacuum, shine sinks and make cookies.  She did so much that I was completely unaware of before I got the chance to be there for the prep.  It was my joy to help her and she always made me feel like she couldn't have done it without me, even though we both know that for all of my life before 1995, she did just that. 

Every year she would make her special clam dip.  She had a special fork that she kept at the back of her silverware drawer... it was her clam-dip-cream-cheese stirring fork.  She just liked the way it felt in her fingers... those fingers that I can still see holding that fork.  We had so much fun, laughing as we made ready for all those she so devoutly loved. 

She was, quite simply, the most delightful human being I've ever encountered on this earth. 

She had a poem framed in her kitchen window sill that her friend, Kaye, had written for her.  I've read it so many times, I don't think I could forget it if I tried.  It went like this:

Your sunflower self,
of bosom earth,
so caring,
warms the weary world.

How true it was.  How true it is.  She continues to warm this weary world in the memory of anyone who knew her. 

I miss you fiercely, Grandma. 

Ella and Grandma Carol, 2002.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Because It Moved Me

A hundred years ago, I wrote about when I was going to our local sidewalk art show, and how much I loved my own original artwork that I've purchased.  Well, the sidewalk art show was this last weekend.  I only had about an hour to cruise around and view the lovely artwork, but I was going because I love it SO much.  There was one booth that is there every year, a guy who carves walking sticks with old-man faces.  This is not usually a booth that interests me, but my kids wanted to check it out, so in we went. As I was glancing around the booth, I turned to the south wall and saw the most amazing things.  There were only three of them, barn wood pieces painted with black and white portraits of Native Americans.  The one in the middle grabbed me.  I couldn't stop looking at it.  It was an old Native American man in profile.  He was looking far off.  He was aloof and ghost-like.  It reminded me of my grandfather who is 1/4 Cherokee (I think that's the right tribe...?). 

I spoke to the artist for a good 15 minutes.  He doesn't do many of these, never enough for a whole series.  The barn wood is difficult to obtain.  He uses real photographs of Native Americans from a book he has and he only likes to spend about an hour on each piece... just gets a feel for the shapes, shadows and highlights.  A.MAZ.ING.  I was entranced. 

As I chatted with the artist, I kept thinking I would walk away from the booth.  I got his email address so I could have him email me more of these pieces as he did them.  I was going to leave.  Every time I tried, I found myself worried to leave because what if somebody bought this piece?  I watched people walk into his booth and if they looked in the direction of my lovely old Indian man, I found myself stepping a little closer to it, to make sure they knew I was already interested in it.  I felt like it was mine and I had to defend it and protect it from everyone else. 

After the fourth or fifth time I tried to leave, and the fourth or fifth time I "protectively" stepped closer to it, I realized that if I didn't buy this and take it home, I would regret it forever.  And it only cost as much as a tank of gas in my van, for heaven's sake!

"I'm going to buy this right now," I told the artist.  "I can't leave it here." 

"Great!" he responded. 

I discovered I was out of checks, but said that he could take cards. (no power or phone lines, so I was surprised...)  He pulled out his "Jurassic" credit card machine... you know the ones you swipe on carbon paper?  Awesome.  He was all old-school.  I left with my Native American barn wood painting. 

I came home and hung it on a wall... perhaps a temporary spot, but I had to have it up.  I stare at it all the time.  Ella even said to me today, "Mom, why do you keep staring at that?" 

Because I love it and I can't help it... and that's how I know I made the right decision. 

(not a very good picture of it, but you get the idea... 
and you're just grateful that I posted a picture since it's not a forte of mine, right???)

Random Thoughts on a Monday Night

-My husband was in Louisiana for a week and I was living the single-mom life.  I don't like that.  I like being married and having my husband around.  He's awesome.  High fives for my awesome marriage and my kids' awesome daddy.

-There is something I want to do and I find myself gripped by fear about it.  I remember times in my life where I have pushed through fear and doubt.  I need to find that place in myself for this thing I want to do.

-Mac is at scout camp this week.  My son is at scout camp.  I forget he's gone and think I need to call him up for dinner or pick him up from his friend's house.  It's very weird.  I'm sure it will happen more frequently as the years press on.  He turned 11 on the 15th of this month.  How did that happen?  He wears a men's shoe... size 7 1/2.  What???  He's five feet tall.  WHAT?  He has armpit hair.  WHAT!!!!?   He's a real person and he's going to grow up to be this awesome funny human whom I LIKE and have fun with instead of this twerpy kid who I send to time out and who's mouth I wash with soap because he's a little sass-box.  Life is so weird.  And so awesome.

-Ella got a Toys R Us gift card for her birthday.  We redeemed it today and she had a grand time choosing her own gift.  She chose a wolf stuffed animal (wolves are her favorite animal), and a Magic 8 Ball.  I've chuckled endlessly to myself while I listen to Ella and Rohan ask it questions. 

            Rohan:  Ask it if I will go to outer space.
            Ella asks. 
            Magic 8 Ball: YOU CAN COUNT ON IT
            Rohan:  WOW!  I'm going to OUTER SPACE!!!
            Rohan: Ask it if I'll see aliens.
            Ella asks.
            Magic 8 Ball:  YES
            Rohan: I'M GOING TO SEE REAL ALIENS!!

            A minute later I've left the room and I'm washing dishes.  Rohan runs in screaming with excitement, "MOM!!!!  I'm going to BUILD my OWN rocket ship to get to outer space!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Those are the mommy-moments that make all those harder mommy-moments worth it.

-I made curry tonight for dinner.  I love curry.

-I got a new purse.  It's red leather.  It's HAWT.  I love it.

-Got my A/C fixed in my car a month or two ago and now it's not working again.  LAMESAUCE.  Seriously.  Makes me want to cry.... or kick something.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Android and the Tooth Fairy

If you are, at times, a person of *ahem* forgetfulness and your child loses a tooth first thing in the morning, might I suggest putting a little reminder in your phone, be it Android or otherwise, to perform your Tooth Fairyish duties that night? 

It sure saved my bacon. 

Thank you, Android. 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day Recap

Yesterday was Father's Day, you know.  I've got some great fathers in my life and I'll just tell the world that I love them.  Dustin.  Dad.  Roger.  Gpa Earl.  Gpa C.  I love you. 

I'm blessed with some flippin' sweet dad's, but Dustin and my own daddio are the stars of my own personal Father's Day.  For D, I cooked him an amazing breakfast (can I say that if I cooked it?  guess so, cuz I'm sayin' it).  I tried to keep the kids from fighting, but that's kinda like telling the wind to stop blowing... I wasn't very successful, but maybe the effort was worth something?  Then I cooked his dinner of choice, Yaki Soba.  It was messy and turned my kitchen into a vegetable-scraps-explosion.  I chopped eight zillion veggines and sweated my little, wife-heart out while I cooked the Father's Day meal.  It turned out delish, (do you hear that horn tooting?  yeah, that's mine.) and I was happy to make his tastebuds smile.  My kids whined and called it "Yucky Soba", but when do they not whine about food?  Oh, let me answer that question.  When I make Maria's Homemade Mac and Cheese.  That's about it. 

My sweet father-of-my-children is the best thing in my life.  I have many bests, but he is at the center.  I often marvel at the relationship we share.  It's loss-for-words kind of awesome.  Love you, Dusty.  Thank you for us.  Thank you for the way you make me feel.  Thank you for our beautiful family.  These kids of ours kick our butts at times, but what a wonderful journey we are having.  Thank you for being by my side and growing in our capacities together.   

My own dad was working yesterday, so we're doing his very own Father's Day next Sunday.  Lucky him.  As he said today... "I get my very own holidays all the time now!"  One of the (few) perks of working two weeks on, one week off, out of town.  My dad is pretty much a rockstar for doing this out-of-town work thing.  I'm so proud of him.  I miss him tremendously when he's gone and find myself breathing easier when he's home.  He's always been such a patient father and so validating of his children.  I've always known where I stand with him.  Love unconditional.  That's my dad. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Tonight I was running with Maria. 

Tonight the cloud hazed full moon was GIGANTIC(!) and stunning. 

Tonight my dinner-cooking pleased my children immensely and Rohan hugged around both of my legs until it hurt. 

Tonight my baby folded herself into my body the moment the lights went out, just as she does every night... and my heart melted, just as it does every night.

Tonight I am up too late doing nothing productive.

Tonight I washed every dish and completely cleared the table... a big deal, as this doesn't always get accomplished. 

Tonight I want to create beautiful spaces in my home, but because it's almost 1 a.m it must wait until...


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Family Portraits, or Lack Thereof

I suck at getting family portraits taken.  I think my #1 reason is the fact that I am scared of picking "cute outfits".  Lamesauce. 

So, you can imagine that this article caught my eye,and I scoured it and dreamed of a cute, sassy family photo hanging in my living room. 
The last family photo (or the ONLY one??  Yes.) was taken when Rohan was 18 months old.  Yep.  That would be 4.5 years ago.  Lamesauce with meatballs.

It was sure cute, but I have another child in my family now who is almost the same age as Roh was in this pic.  WHAT??!!  Time for an upgrade, dohncha think?

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Sometimes I forget I have a blog anymore. 


So, this is me saying HI....

This pic was taken in my long-haired days, back in March for a senior project of a cousin? (I think) of my friend. She did some photo project that showed that moms can still be beautiful. It was a last minute-thrown-together-ish thing, but I thought it was fun to have a pic of myself. I don't get them very often as I am usually the one behind the camera.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Self-awareness, as everything else in life, has an current, a flow. 
At times, all rapids and whirlpools, it carries me faster than I'd choose on my own and often through frightening and dangerous waters.  If I let go of my fear, the ride can be exhilerating, though I may come out crying at the end. 

As all rapids eventually find a calm, so do my own personal rivers of thought. 

Those calm places often look placid and smooth, yet upon submersion I find that the current is stronger than I realized. It is then I am faced with a choice; tread water, swim hard or relax and float and let the current carry me where it may. 

There are other times where I stand on the shore and watch the current and wonder at the hinting surface-nuances of the more powerful forces below.  I know there are things I'm not seeing or feeling because I choose to stay out of the water. 

And there are other times where I walk away from the water all together. 

But I know I'll always come back.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Friday's Fabulous Five

Remember how I made up this game a long time ago when I blabbed about fabulous things in my life?  I barely do, but I am committed to posting more for my dear, sweet dad and sister who are far away. 

Dad and Lacy, this one's for you.

1- Brynja's sweet face and her spunky personality.  Not to mention the precious peace that falls on her round cheeks in her slumber.

2- SHORT HAIR!!!!  This is the most fabulous thing EVER.  I feel like me again.  I love me with short hair.  I love the ease of it.  I love the look.  I love the spunk.  I LOVE MY SHORT HAIR! 

And I love seeing my short-haired self holding my sleeping Baby Brynja.

Brynja and I, April 14, 2011

3-Having my tax information all in order and in my accountant's hands and OUT of my hands.  YAY.  This was the latest I've EVER done my taxes and I'm so relieved that it's over.

4- Being o.k. with myself and where I'm at.  Sure there are many things that I want to change, but I am mostly in such a great place and feel so good in my own skin.  I like me.  Isn't that weird and novel?  I like this girl named Clancy.  She's a cool cat, says I.

5- Awakening minds.  Some people get excited about sports.  Some love their T.V. shows.  Some people are passionate about exercise or nutrition.  Some about reading books.  Some about art and creating things, decorating and beautifying spaces.  Me?  I like many of those things, but I thrill at expansion of human conscsiousness, mine or others.  I love to make new discoveries about myself.  I love to dig into my psyche and see what drives me to behaviors that are both desirable and not.  I love to watch the process in others and hear about their unfolding.  This is passionate stuff for me.  I love it and I'm shoutin' it to the world. 


P.S. I feel inclined to ask if anyone would like to join me in processing?  If so, I invite you... get down and dirty with a shovel and dig into yourself.  Find out who you are.  Love you.  Become.  I dare you! 

And then tell me about it, if you wish.  I love to hear about your process, if you feel inclined to share.  ♥ 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Rohan the Alien

My Rohan currently has an obsession with aliens.  He talks about them constantly.  He draws them incessantly. 

He has told me several times that he wishes he were an alien.  Today he asked me, "Mom, if I turned into an alien, would you be scared of me?"

I replied, "If I knew it was you, I wouldn't be."

He considered that for a bit and then said, "I could make a badge that I wear that says that I'm Rohan, and then you would know it was me." 

I told him that sounded like a pretty good plan.  He asked me again, "But would you be scared of me?"

"Well, do you think you would be a pretty scary alien?"  I responded.

"Probably.  And I don't know if you would know it was me." he said, with some concern.

I asked him if he thought he would turn into an alien when I was watching or if it would be sometime when I was not looking.  If I was watching, then I would know that he had turned and I wouldn't be scared of him because I would know that he was my son.  But I might be a little scared if I didn't happen to observe this transformation to alien.  But if there was some way he could let me know that it was him, I'd probably be ok knowing my son was an alien. 

He looked very thoughtful and not a little worried. 

He explained to me then that it probably wouldn't be right to have a mom that was scared of her son and that he wanted me to be sure that he's my son. 

"And so, I don't think I'll become an alien, Mom."

I told him that was ok with me too.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Day 8 of 30

A favorite song....

Can't pick just one.  These are three of many songs I've been listening to while I get all my crap together for our meeting with our accountant. These three just happen to be the ones I've been listening to *obsessively*. 

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 7 of 30

Whoops.  So I'm not doing so hot at staying on task.... but at least I have my subject matter already picked, eh? 

Day 7 is something I want to buy....

I really want to buy a couch.  When we finished our basement, we moved our couch down to the family room and we have yet to replace it upstairs in the living room.  We have a plethora of chairs, currently.  And I don't think I like any of them.  I guess I'm grateful I have somewhere to sit until we buy that couch.  I even have the one I want picked out.  But we decided to be smart and wait until we had the cash to get them (I'd like the loveseat too...)  So, we're still waiting, thanks ever-so-much to our duplex that keeps sucking money. Dustin tore out a tiled shower today and we'll be replacing that next week.  Some mega-idiot that did the bathroom before we bought it put the tile directly onto the sheetrock on the walls and directly on the wood framing on the bottom pan area.  So, the shower has been leaking and leaking over the years, turning sheetrock to mush and the framing to compost under the tile.  Lovely. 

I'd also like flooring for my living room... and paint, and new windows and new curtains.  And new cabinets for my kitchen, and new flooring... pretty much a whole new upstairs to match our whole new basement.  Wouldn't that be nice?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 6 of 30

Something you bought recently...

It seems like all I spend money on lately is my rentals.  Last week I bought a gallon of paint, a gallon of polyurethane for refinishing hardwood floors ($50 for ONE gallon!!), a floor-finish applicator, blinds for windows, a shower curtain rod, and I rented a floor sander.  I also purchased the service of a roto-rooterish company (FOUR times in as many months), a sewer line camera, an excavating company, and a furnace repairman.  Not to mention paying for heat and power in a vacant house for two months...

Just so you know, these are my least favorite things to spend money on. 


In other news, I just sent all my children to bed for being Bratty McBrattykins. (Brynja was the exception)   Right now I'm listening to a chorus of screams.  If someone is walking by outside they might be worried about what is going on in this house.  Ella is screaming like I severed her arm, and Mac is mock-wailing to make fun of Ella.  (Don't worry, no arms have actually been severed.)  They are in their rooms.  Ella can hear him and so she screams louder and then he screams louder too, to make her mad.  She screams back at him to be quiet and he continues screaming.  I told her, just now, the magic secret.  STOP SCREAMING.  If you stop screaming then he'll stop making fun of your screaming.  She hasn't seen the sense of my motherly wisdom yet. 

Mac just discovered that Rohan is no longer in time-out.  He ceased his mock-wailing and started yelling the question, "Why is Rohan out of time out?"  Rohan, who sat quietly on the couch (his time-out spot, as he shares a room with Ella and I didn't want to deal with that time-out disaster) during his punishment, was thanked for taking his sentence with good grace, and was promptlly freed from his cushiony prison.  Mac didn't think this was fair.  I told him he was still trapped because he was making fun of Ella's screaming and he then tried to tell me that he wasn't making fun of her.  Sure, kiddo.  Nice try. 

It's shaping up to be one of those evenings I wish I could hold an auction for a couple of kids.

Any opening bids?

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 5 of 30

Did a week really just go by?  I'm so busy I could scream.  Or cry.  But right now I'm waiting for the washer to stop so I can swap the contents to the dryer because I want a particular shirt tomorrow... and so, rather than scream or cry or get anything done of my many things-to-do, I blog.

Day 5 is Top Ten Pet Peeves

I've not been looking forward to this one.  I think it's because I dislike lists.  Here goes, in no particular order of relevance.

#10: Lists

#9: Whiny tenants.

#8: The new traffic pattern on a street right by my house that I HAVE to drive on ALL the time.  It used to be two lanes and now it is one lane and people suddenly feel the need to drive 20 mph instead of the posted 35 mph (or 40 like they used to do before the change).  I have never acted on the road rage that I feel, but I vividly imagine ramming the back of the vehicles in front of me when I drop from 35-40 to 20.  I get so mad.

 #7: My children being tattle-tales just for the sake of telling me or getting their sibling in trouble.

#6:  Poor spelling and incorrect grammar.

#5: Being asked my telephone number/account number AFTER I already entered it using the keypad on my phone. Why do they ask for it twice? What was the point of entering it in the first place?   (stole this one from Esther but it sure doesn't make it any less true for being stolen)

#4: Trying to talk to those automated phone things and if you don't say things just right or if there's any noise in your house, they say, "I'm sorry, I didn't catch that.  It sounds like you said..  'Blah Blah Blah', is that correct."  NO YOU IDIOTIC PHONE THINGY!!  I HATE YOU!  JUST GIVE ME A REAL PERSON!!!  (I may or may not actually scream at those things in real life...)

#3: Mispronunciations of words like nuclear, escape, especially, salsa, and MY NAME. 

#2: When my adorable husband or children don't rinse their milk out of various dishes before letting them sit in the sink for a while.  Just put a touch of water in that bowl or cup, please, my loves?  It makes the washing so much easier.  (I try to maintain sweetness with this one... it does bug me but it's one of those things that I let go of pretty easily because I love them)
#1: People who call about a house or apartment I have for rent, ask me a million questions and take a good five minutes of my time and then, as an afterthought, ask if I allow cats or accept Idaho Housing (subsidised housing program).  NO, I DON'T!!  I sure wish you would have asked that at the first.  Thanks for wasting BOTH of our time.

End of negative ranting.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day 4 of 30

Something I crave...

So many things.

To be touched.  I crave a massage on my neck.  I crave my feet to be rubbed.  Or even just held.  Dustin laughs at me because I often ask him to just hold my feet, wrapping his hands around them with gentle pressure.  I love that.  I also love my back, face and/or arms to be tickled.

I crave self-awareness.  I love to dig in to my own psyche.  I want to heal old hurts that I find there. 

I crave escape.  A book.  A trip.  A girls' night out.  I am happy and content for the most part, but sometimes I just want escape.

I crave fresh mozzarella, basil and homegrown tomatoes.  And I often crave orange juice.  And Cadbury Mini Eggs.

I crave a thunderstorm.

I crave that place I sometimes get into when I write where I can pour my whole sould into the words and I feel better for the writing of them.  And I feel satisified.

I often crave a good solid cry.

I crave sunshine.  I crave that right now.

I crave singing and playing my guitar.  I crave singing with my family. 

See... so much craving, so little time. 

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 3 of 30

A favorite picture. 

I could stare at this picture all day long.  That probably means I should frame it, huh?

Brynja Leigh, March 20, 2010  hours old.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 2 of 30

A picture of me last year and now and how I have changed since then…


Pictures… my favorite!  I’m just so good at uploading them! 

Here’s me last year… right about this same time.  A year ago today I was two days from my due date with Brynja. 

Preggo Clancy 3-2010

As you might have guessed, I’ve changed a little bit since then, physically speaking. 

Here’s me recently… this was at a Valentine’s Day Dinner/Fundraiser/Dance thing.  It was SUCH a fun night… D and I learning the Cha-Cha and then Jessica (on the left), Rebby and I (and our hubbies too, now and then) dancing til they closed down the house…  that was a great night. 


So my coat hides my tummy a little bit, but you can see that I’m definitely shaped different now than I was a year ago.  Thank goodness.  Pregnancy is great in many ways, but I was so very uncomfortable this last time.  I’m so glad that’s done. 

How else have I changed, besides the very obvious?   Last year my life was about growing a baby and preparing my mental faculties for the life-altering event that having a baby is.  I was not feeling introspective or even very self-aware, with the exception of my physical self.  Now I feel like  I’ve cycled back into the digging/introspective/processing/moving-forward Clancy.  I felt very stagnant for a long time… a year and a half or two.  I am now digging around in my heart and looking for the areas that are ready for growth.  I’m finding them.   Maybe that’s why I want to blog.  Why I’m actually writing blog posts in my head while I’m in the shower. 

It’s interesting as I think on where I’m at now, I notice that I am much kinder to myself .  I feel like more of an observer this time around than I did in my last cycle of growth.  I look at the things that need work with more love and more acceptance.  That feels good to notice.  I am ok with where I’m at, even though I’m not where I want to be.  I feel like an observer of my life in many ways.  Like I am watching something unfold.

And I like that.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day One of 30

I’m stealing this idea from Esther, who reportedly stole it from some of her friends… whatever… blogging is all a bunch of thievery, I suppose.  At least when it comes to this type of thing. 

This is a 30 day blogging plan.   We’ll see how I do.

Day 1- Five things about you that no one really knows. 

Hmm… is there anything that you don’t know about me?  I seem to tell all.  Let’s see…

1- When I was young, my older sister and I would pretend that we were detectives.  We had models from magazines who were the murder victims.  We had file folders and everything.  I remember one file folder in particular, The North Beach Twins.  We had two pictures of the same model in bright green leather, but we called them twins.  There were many more cases, but all had a common suspected murderer… a foul character by the name of “Rad”.  He had a file all his own.  He was a caricature drawing that my brother did, complete with tats and leather.  He was definitely a shady character. 

Sarah and I would traipse around the neighborhood picking up clues and being very detective-ish.  We wore high-heels and tight skirts as proper girl-detectives should, or so we thought. 

It was my favorite game.  Probably more for the fact that my sister, with whom I didn’t always get along, played with me and we had fun doing so. 

It’s a fond memory.

2- I have never been to Disneyland.

3- My little sister is moving away this weekend and I want to cry every time I think about it.

4- I am allergic to cats.

5- I come up with my best blog posts in the shower.  But the trouble lately is that I come up with them and then I get out of the shower and I get the pleasure of not writing them because I have the most adorable almost-one-year-old to take care of.  And she does NOT share mommy with the computer well.  We’re working on it.

Perhaps this 30 day challenge will kick my butt in gear to blog a little more.  But I’ve said that before. 

No promises. 

Oh, and P.S…  remember that one blog post where I was going to do one of the projects that has been resting heavy on my mind?  Yeah, well, I did the project (or, well, mostly Dustin did) but I never posted about it.  L.A.M.E. 

The project was our lovely built-in desk in our new basement.  You see, we have this tidy little nook we built and we thought how perfect it would be for the desk we had to just slip right in there.  But then we didn’t account for the sewer cleanout that stuck out of the wall, preventing the desk from fitting by about 3/4”.  It was a sad and frustrating day.  (But not quite so sad or frustrating as the day we discovered that our entertainment center would not fit down our stairs to go into our new family room…) 

Anyway, our solution was a built-in desk.  Dustin (with help from his lovely assistant) built it, and we even did a shelf over the top for our printer  AND we did a pull out tray for our mouse and keyboard.  It’s all so wonderful I can hardly stand it! 

Would you like to see pictures? 

TOO bad.  I suck at posting pictures.  But I think you already know that.   :-p


Oh yeah, and here’s the rest of the topics for the 30 day thingy, in case any of you want to thieve.

Day 01 – Five things about me that no one really knows. 
Day 02— A picture of me last year and now and how I have changed since then
Day 03 — A favorite photo
Day 04 — Something I crave
Day 05 — Top 10 pet peeves
Day 06 — Something I bought recently
Day 07 — Something I want to buy
Day 08 — A favorite song
Day 09 — A favorite movie
Day 10 — A favorite food & recipe
Day 11 — A favorite book
Day 12 — A favorite quote
Day 13 — What did I do today??
Day 14 — My dream house...
Day 15 — Next 3 on “Bucket List”
Day 16 — A favorite Youtube video
Day 17 — A habit you wish you didn't have
Day 18 — The meaning behind your blog name
Day 19 — A hobby of mine
Day 20 — My favorite Christmas tradition
Day 21 — A travel story
Day 22 — A photo of my family
Day 23 — Share a previous Christmas memory
Day 24 — 5 things you love about Christmas
Day 25 — A place I love
Day 26 — A child I love
Day 27 — A person I love
Day 28 — A secret you want to get out
Day 29 — Testimony
Day 30 — Hopes, dreams and plans for the next 365 days

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Best Laid Plans

Some days don't go how you expect.

Despite actually planning out every meal this week on Sunday night, and despite grocery shopping for all the food for said meals, and despite mapping out the goings-on of the past two days in my head, I still found myself scrambling at the dinner hour, both yesterday and today.

This is nearly unheard of for me, this planning and mapping, and yet I still managed to scramble at dinnertime, just like I do every night.

This week my theme has been inadequacy. I've been chock full, bursting at the seams, with self-deprecating thoughts and feelings. In fact, sometimes my seams did burst. Into tears. Big ones.  Dripping-off-your-chin kind of tears.  It hasn't been pretty.

I felt those ugly, dark feelings churning as I considered the scramble, despite my planning.  I recognized the descent I would shortly make into self-pity and disgust. 

And then, magically, I stopped.  The black cloud dissipated with a thought.  There was something magical in today and that was using some of my gifts to help someone I love.  I was simply a listening ear and a few words of advice, but it felt appreciated.  And in serving, I felt fulfilled. 

Plans were never my strong point anyway.

Monday, February 7, 2011


I love this man of mine.  There’s so few pictures of he and I together, I thought I’d share these.  Thanks for taking them, Beck!  And thanks for the awesome date-night-Valentine’s-Party.  ♥

Dustin and Clancy at Beckie's Valentine's Party2

Dustin and Clancy at Beckie's Valentine's Party

Friday, February 4, 2011


I wrote the other day about my Google Reader issues.  (P.S. Thanks to all y’all who suggested I stop following the blogs I was trying to ditch.  It worked!  So far anyway…)  I still track a lot of blogs, and I love reading them.  A couple I still subscribe to are crafty/furniture-revampy/creative blogs.  I love to read them.  Admittedly, I’m a little addicted to them.  I can link-chase through blogs for hours if I’m not careful.  You know, look at one blog that someone linked and then get drawn in and scour it for a while, and then link to another blog… scour, repeat.  It’s dangerous.

One of the problems I’ve found (aside from draining hours as easily as I drain my tub) is that I create brain-clutter for myself.  I look at these blogs and think, I could do that!  And then I think about it some more.  And I think a little more.  And then I see some piece of furniture at a thrift store and I think, HEY! I could fix that up just like ___________ (insert your favorite amazing blogger/furniture restore-er)!  And sometimes I actually buy the piece.  And then I let it sit for a hundred years, all the while I think about it and know it’s there on the backburner waiting to be done.  Think, think, think. 

I bet if I just got down and dirty and did the dang project I would use about 80% less energy.  Maybe even 90%.  That is some serious energy reduction.  Do you think I could get some sort of grant for that?  Is there a “carbon footprint” from brain energy expended?

Anyway, I think I’m trying to say that I should either stop reading these dang blogs or do something about it.  I would love it to be the latter.  There’s great satisfaction that comes from actually creating something with my hands.  *Sigh*

So, for all of you saying to yourself, “THEN JUST DOOOOO IT, CLANCY!!!”  I say, “OK?” 

I’m scared.  But I’m going to post something next week that I either made or revamped or finally finished.   Mmmkay?  And since I’m the kind of girl who works best under pressure, I’m going to proclaim a deadline to the world. 


I can’t tell you how this terrifies me.  But it’s about growth, right?  And I’m not waitin’ for spring.  I am a greenhouse, growing right on through those subzero temperatures.  (Like –19 on Wednesday… yuck.)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Farewell, Phoebe

As it turns out, that was the dachshund’s name.  Phoebe.  I found an ad on Craigslist Sunday night about a little female “wiener dog” who was missing from the area we found her.  (I might have found the ad sooner had they put the word “dachshund” somewhere in the post… duh.) 

So, we were dog owners for less than 48 hours.  And that’s ok with me. 

After the first day I knew she wasn’t “THE” dog for us.  I would’ve kept her and loved her but she didn’t settle well.  My kids were broken hearted… particularly Ella who repeatedly declared that little Miss Dachshund was her best friend.  Ella sobbed and cried when we told her we found the owners.  We told them at about 7 a.m. on Monday morning.  I wasn’t sure when the owners were going to come pick the dog up so I let the kids stay home until she left.  It didn’t end up being very long, but Ella was so distraught, I couldn’t think of sending her on the bus, which she doesn’t love anyway.  So, the kids had a (heart)sick day from school.  (Mac actually was sick and I was already planning to keep him home, and Rohan wasn’t nearly as upset as Ella, but how could I send him when the other two got to stay?)

We kept the little collar we bought for Miss D (no, we didn’t name her that, but we did call her Doxie now and then) and Ella put it around her stuffed dog’s neck.  She then attached the leash we had borrowed from my mom and pulled that stuffed dog around for at least half of the day.  It was a small tragedy in the life of Ella Brae. 

But, time passed and she is better now. 

And I must say that I’m relieved the dog is back at her home, but probably not quite as relieved as Dustin, who cleaned up not one… not two… not even three… but FOUR little dachshund piles and one little dachshund puddle from our living room rug. 

Good thing we invested in a steam cleaner, one of the few things I can thank landlording for.

Farewell, Miss Dachshund.  It was a good 41 hours. 

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dachshund, huh?

Today Dustin and I were running errands.  We were driving out of the parking lot of a big box store on the busiest street in our town.  The parking lot funnels out onto this busy street via a stoplight and it was red as we approached it.  Running off of said street and into the parking lot of said store was a little, red haired dachshund. 

I saw the dog.  I noted in my mind how funny dachshunds look when they’re running. 

I said, “Look at that little wiener dog, Dust.” 

I may or may not have said something about the high chances of it getting hit by a car.  If I didn’t say it aloud, I thought it. 

Dustin, approaching the red light, stopped far behind the other cars and opened his door. 

He made a little kissy-squeaky noise with his lips and the dog stopped.  He called to it.  It looked at us for all of two seconds and then came trotting over to us.  The light turned green.  Dustin scooped up the dog, set it’s muddy feet on his lap, shut the door and drove away. 

I looked around as all this was happening to see if we could identify some sort of owner.  Maybe we should’ve waited longer or looked more, but there are no houses close by and there were no visible people.  And, the light was green. 

I was shocked.  Who was the man sitting next to me?  I was fairly certain it was my husband, but this was not typical Dustin behavior.   As I thought all this, I stared at the dog.  Me, who hasn’t wanted a dog, even a little bit. 

“It’s a girl.” I observed.

“Yeah, it is.” Dustin replied.

This dog communicated with me during that minute I spent looking her over.

“She’s cute.” I commented. “And she seems really mellow.”

“Yeah, she is.  And yes, she does.” Dustin replied.

We drove a block or so down the road and stopped where we were going to eat lunch at a little Thai restaurant.  We sat in the parking lot, the little dog quietly sitting on Dustin’s lap, and stared at each other. 

“Go in and get some food.” Dustin said.

“Are we getting take out? “ I replied.  “I thought we were going in.”

We stared at each other more.  We looked down at the dog.  She licked my hand.  She spoke to me in her doggie language.

“She’s cute.” I repeated.

“She is.” Dustin replied.

We sat there silently.  We stared at each other again. 

“How about we make something at home and come back here for dinner,” I said.

“Good idea,” Dustin confirmed.

We left.

We went home. 

With a dachshund.

*I called the Humane Society and let them know that we found this dog.  I described her and left my phone number and told where she was found.  I also took her into the Animal Shelter and had her scanned for a microchip.  They didn’t find one.  I filled out a “Found” form and told them we’d like to care for her until someone calls to claim her.  If someone calls to claim her.  In their prayers tonight, my kids all prayed that no one would call.   I kinda feel the same way. 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Just Say No

Sometimes, in my moments of mothering, I wish I could forge a campaign against an issue that would be completely moot.  Really there’s nothing to be done but deal with them, but those little things like bedwetting and nighttime vomit cleanup details... can we put a stop to that? 

Or could we, perhaps, create a committee that would rally for the cause of ending sibling bickering?  Who wants to be the committee chairperson? 

Today, I’d like to wage a useless war on Stealth Pooping.  You know the kind…

You’ve been mildly puttering around doing all the house things that need doing (laundry, dishes, reading, blogging), and your cute little 10 month old baby is puttering around doing all the little baby things that need doing (carrying her baby doll by the arm, digging in the dirt of Daddy’s bonsai plant [AGAIN!], making the cutest jabber-sounds known to mankind… you know, all those important baby things).  Your baby starts to get fussy.  You pick her up.  You feed her a little food.  You give her a little toy.  You just changed her diaper 15 minutes ago, so you don’t even think of checking that out. 

Time goes by.

Baby is ok, but not content.  She wants you to hold her a LOT.  You are a loving mother, so you comply.  You rock her and sing her a song.  You might even get her to go to sleep. 

More time goes by. 

Baby is acting fairly normal, but suddenly breaks down.  She fusses and acts uncomfortable.  It’s been a while since you changed her little diaper, so you do the diaper yank.  (you know that one too, I am sure.)  Then you see it.


You have no idea when it happened.  No olfactory indicator was given.  You go to change the diaper and realize that this mess has been here a while.  Suddenly, all those sounds of discontent from your little darling take on a different meaning.

You croon, “Oh, baby-girl!  I’m so sorry!  How long has this been here?”  You ask the question knowing you’ll get no answer from your yet-wordless little one.

Baby starts howling and screaming as you try to clean up the mess that is, clearly, not fresh and thus not easily removed with your trusty box of wipes.  A battle ensues involving short, kicking legs, wet-wipes, soothing words (soothing the mommy much more than the baby), and vain attempts to keep the baby’s shoulders both on the ground at the same time.  

Somehow, a champion emerges.  You, the mother, are the victor, successfully slathering a little raw bum with ointments, creams or powders.

Everyone is relieved and baby toddles off, continuing her bold quest of melting hearts by shooting rays of delightfulness and adorability from her toes, eyeballs, mouth, ears, knees, nose, fingers and heart.

The end. 


Wrong.  What you are forgetting is just how stealthy Stealth Poop can be.  It’s a sly one.  It could be ten minutes, or it could be an hour. If you’re not careful, Stealth Poop will hold you in a vicious cycle of sneaky messes, wrestling matches and raw bums that could last for days or weeks.  And that’s where my campaign comes in. 


Mothers Against Stealth Pooping. 

The design is rudimentary, but I’m thinking it’s going to make some powerfully impactful bumper stickers:

no stealth pooping

I’ll be passing out flyers on diaper isles in a grocery store near you.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Reader Tribulation

So, there's some blogs I read.   I used to think they were awesome.  Or something.   For whatever reason, awesome or not, I subscribed to them in Google Reader.  I've since decided they are un-awesome.  Or, at the very least, irrelevant and gumming up the grease in the quest for simplifying my life.  (QUEST, I tell you!)  So, like a good Simplification-Questerian, I went to my little "manage subscriptions" button in Reader and I unsubscribed to several previously-important blogs. 

I'll have you know, taking that step relaxed my mentally faculties. I refreshed my little Reader page and discovered less to read.  Less is more, don't you know?

A week or so went by and I experienced blissful simplicity via Google Reader. 


Google Reader began thinking for itself.  We might be dealing with some sort of A.I. here, folks. 

Right there, in my Reader feed, were those blogs that had fallen through the cracks of pertinence.  Those blogs I had eliminated from my brain-clutter had returned.  Why?  I don't know. 

So, I repeated the process.  Unsubscribe.  No thanks, lovely blogs. 

Again, I went on my merry, on-the-path-to-the-simple-life way. 

A week-ish passed again... log in to Reader...




I have now gone through this process three times.  And tonight, once again, the blogs are back. 


Just let me be, blogs.  Get thee hence.   Please!? 

I am mystified.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Three Cheers for Randomness and Rambling


So, January, huh?  That's just weird.

December held me captive via chocolate, caramel and Santa Clause.  It was an exhausting month.  Not to mention Baby B.  I don't recall my other babies being this much work.  But neither to I recall being 31 when I had my other babies.  Right.  I was in my twenties.  I remember now.  I am now convinced that factor makes an impactful difference.

The return to school, post Christmas break, is a brutal thing.  I'll be honest... I'm  not a fan.  But after a few days, I think we're back in the swing of things.

Did you ever think about that term, "back in the swing of things"?  When I think of that term, it brings to mind some feeling of routine and easiness or something.  But when I think about it a little more literally, I think of a swing at a park that goes up and down, fast and slow.  You have to pump to get going high and fast, and you can cruise a little bit and enjoy the ride, but you slow down and eventually stop.  It's fun.  Or it was when I was young.  Now that I'm 32, I get that barfy feeling, which obliterates some of that fun feeling.  I'm not sure what that means, but it's got to be significant somehow...

It's really too bad how YouTube has started showing advertisements.  Remember the good ole days when it was just weird videos? 

Micheal Buble's mouth moves weird to me.  I think I should just listen to his music and not watch him sing on YouTube where I can't help but wonder if he genetically can't relax his upper lip or if he just does that when he sings. 


Speaking of YouTube, I just watched this video of my little LITTLE Rohan and I may or may not have cried a little bit while I saw that sweet little face and heard that precious little voice.  What happens to these babies?  Where do they go?  Why do they have to get swallowed up by these older, yet no less wonderful, big kids?  How does this happen?  Can't these adorable little tiny faces somehow coexist with the new, more grown-up versions?  Growing up is so tragic and so wonderful.  Such a dichotomy. 

Did you cry?  Probably not, but I bet you smiled.  "This is me.  I am Rohan.  Amen."  Precious.

You know what I miss about blogging?  Expressing myself.  I find myself all comtemplative and introspective lately, with no outlet.  I'm not really talking to anyone in depth, except my husband, but daily life does not always lend itself to deep introspective talks.  I have to make those happen.  And Dustin, being a man, places deep talking and diving into emotional wells down about #100 on his to-do list.  And that's just fine.  He is willing to take a plunge now and then, but he doesn't have a need to do so, like I do, being a woman.  I got to do that as often I wanted to when I was blogging a lot and I miss that.  Miss it, I tell you.
For Christmas, I got a new computer.  And a very expensive piece of software that I can build custom websites with.  I'm doing one right now for my brother-in-law.  Next I will do my own (which was why I actually bought the program) for my pretzels and such.  It's all very exciting. 

Speaking of exciting... our other big Christmas present was a finished basement.  Carpet came on December 27th.  It's been about 4 years in the making, our basement.  But it's really, actually finished now.  I can't tell you the satisfaction this has brought to Dustin and I.  And I can't tell you how grateful I am for my dad and his endless knowledge about all things construction.  He's good, I tell you.  Very good. 


And, because you have asked (on Facebook) and will ask on here, here are some pictures, before and after.

Just kidding.  I wrote this post on January 6th and it's only just being published because I've been trying to get up the gumption to post those blasted pictures. Why are pics so hard for me? I have no idea.  Maybe some day I'll show before and afters... but not today.