Friday, October 31, 2008

Jaxon's Distaster of the Week

When you have a child like Jaxon, you have 2 choices:

#1 Become frustrated and bitter about the fact that nothing in your house will last longer than a week or so, everything will be drawn on, broken into pieces, and thrown at someone's head, and someone will likely be hospitalized on a regular basis as a result of his antics


#2 See that Jaxon has just given you a perfect weekly column for your blog :)

I choose #2.

So, you will now get a weekly installment of "Jaxon's disaster of the week".

When I tell people about things he does, they say, "Oh Im sorry he was so bad today. I'm sorry you had a rough day." I want to say, "No, you dont understand, today was just another day. This was nothing out of the ordinary." So I thought it would be fun, as the week goes on and I clean up mess after mess, as I throw away another box full of cereal that was dumped all over 3 rooms, as I soak up 10 gallons of water that made it onto the carpet, pick which one of his little tricks was the best.

Well, the week isn't over yet, but Im gonna post the one that takes the cake *pun* here and if he tops it again this week, you might get an extra installment.

Okay, actually the cake wasn't the best one, but here is a picture of Mason's birthday cake- Jaxon style-, just for kicks,

But that was nothing, I assure you. I didnt even flinch at that one.

So far this week, here is the best one, which you wont get until I tell the story.

What is this, you might ask? Well, with Jax, we know that everything must be locked, or things will be either dangerous or expensive. So I put a lock on the oven. Jaxon was opening the oven and using the racks to climb up on the cupboards. I was terrified that he would do that when it was on and burn himself badly. So we locked the oven.

Yesterday morning, I was bathing Jayden when I smelled smoke coming from the kitchen. I went in to find that Jaxon had pulled the bottom of the plastic lock off of the front of the oven door, opened the door, and placed it inside the oven. Then he climbed up onto the stove and turned the oven on. As the oven heated up, the plastic lock melted onto the inside of the oven and eventually started dripping onto the inside of the oven door and smoking up my entire house.

I have no idea how to get this melted plastic off the inside of the oven and cannot use my oven at all until I do :)

In keeping with my resolve to put a positive spin on these things (I should so be a politician), I will kindly thank Jaxon for making it so I dont have to cook for a while.

See you next week with our next installment. Please pray for me that it won't be too expensive.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

is it ME?

The past week, I've been spending my life on the phone, trying to get other people's stupid mistakes figured out. It must be me because I swear, it's not normal for this many things to be "processed incorrectly".

Last week, I got a statement from my insurance saying that Jaxon's hospitalization was denied because he was not eligible for benefits at the time of service. So I called them to find out what was up. You would think that if you pay $500 a month for insurance that you rarely use anyway, they would be willing to pay when it is actually needed. They said it was their error and they would indeed pay all the claims that they denied (which was the hospital, the surgeon, the anesthesiologist, the radiologist etc...).

Then, I got a statement in the mail saying our house payment was late. So I called because we recently refinanced and our old mortgage was supposed to be paid off weeks ago. When I called, I was told they couldn't access that information since they were undergoing system maintenance. I would have to call back another time to find out whether it had indeed been paid off. Here it is the end of the month and Im panicking because if for any reason, they haven't received the funds, they could report it to the credit bureau. I tried to access it online as well but had no luck their either.

Then today I took Mason's lunch money up to the school. I took it straight to the lunch room and paid cash. A couple hours later, he called me to say they wouldn't let him eat lunch because he didnt have lunch money. Apparently they didnt get it put into the computer or something....

After that, I ran to Target to get some birthday stuff for Mason. I wrote a check. He told me my check was not approved. I was confused since I have never had a returned check. I asked for a number to call to find out why it was not approved. He didnt have one, but called the front desk, who didn't know either, and gave me their guest relations number. So I called and explained, and was told, "We're sorry. Our system is having issues and we cannot accept any checks right now. It has nothing to do with your account, we are just asking all guests to pay with another tender until we get it fixed." Would have been nice if the store had known that so I hadn't felt like an idiot when they told me they wouldn't take my check!

Then I got the mail, and sure enough, there is a bill from the hospital saying the insurance has failed to pay and I now have to pay thousands of dollars right away. So I get to call the insurance back, and I get to call the hospital, to see if I can get that resolved before we have anything showing as delinquent.

I also had a battery for my camera go bad. So several weeks ago I called and since it is warranteed, they said they would be sending me a new one and it would be here in 2-3 buisness days. That was 3 weeks ago, and it has not arrived. So I get to call them as well to find out where it is.

Is this normal? I give my money to all of these people and you'd think that would make things go smoothly, but no, apparently it's very common for people to not realize that you are or have given them money. I would have lots more free time if I didnt have to spend so much of it on the phone taking care of these issues. Seems like I need to keep my schedule completely free so that I can spend the day doing nothing except straightening out whatever messes have been made with my accounts :)

Phew...there is my rant for the day!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

And of cooooouuuurrrse

Mason found out that Savannah had a blog, so he had to have one too!

His is

Savannah Says so

My mini me has decided she needs a blog. So of course, it's pretty much what Savannah wants, Savannah gets, so I made her a blog. Not much on it yet, but we'll get there!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Paaaar-TAY like a Rockstar

Or like a bunch of Mormon married people who are easily amused :)

Sadie (poor girl), Chad, Daniel, Me, Lane, Loni

Can I just say how thankful I am for friends? I have so many long distance friends who say they have the hardest time finding people they can go out with and enjoy themselves- a group of friends to belong to- and I am so thankful to have a group of friends who share common interests, have the same values, and remind me to make time for fun!

Jason (Napoleon- DUH!), and Torrie (Debbie, with glamour shot)

Saturday morning, Hidee called me and sais she was having a costume party for couples that night. I had a crazy/busy day scheduled (typical) but thought it would be fun. Dan wasn't as thrilled about the idea but he knew I wanted to go so he agreed.

Neither of us had costumes, so I decided to use Savannah's borrowed cat costume (no laughing, yes I used my 5 year old's costume). Dan, in typical Dan fashion, asked me at 6:55 (party at 7) what he should be. I gave him a bunch of ideas, and in typical Dan fashion, he rejected them all and called his mom :) Truth be told, she had much better ideas anyway, so looks like he made the right call. He borrowed his Dad's old letterman Jacket from 1963 and had this mask...well, you'll have to see the pics.

Anyway, we had such a great time. We ate lots of food that I had no business eating. And we played games that most of us have probably not played since High School :) Everyone's costumes were hilarious! We finished the night off by playing a very rowdy version of "Have you Ever" (is that what it's called??). I have a few bruises and a couple broken toenails, but hey, it was fun. And Dan, who didn't want to go, had a great time. Here are some fun pics:

Torrie, you hot mama- I love the fanny pac with floral motif and I'd like to schedule a booking for one of those sessions, if you don't mind ;)

Seth (who ditched the costume early on it seems), Debbie (who must have been sweating by the end of the night) and Hidee (Hannah Montana)

Daniel sitting on Sadie's lap.

Me- Meow.

Cassie, Hidee, Ryan, Levi, Dananda, Daniel, Lane, and Chad

There was a lot of lap sitting going on. Seth, Debbie, Hidee and Ryan.

Thanks Hidee, we had a great time. I still need your caramel brownie recipe. And while Im making requests, Torrie, the salsa? Thanks :)

A year's Supply of Soap guessed it- Free.

Here are all my free soaps from last week :) Not just any soap- these are really fun! They have a mesh covering on them that does 2 things- it helps the kids grip it so it doesn't slip and it last longer since it doesnt wash away. It's also very sudsy and smells fruity, so the kids think it's great.

Anyway, I got 30 bars for free. I could have gotten more but I bought them out. Here is how this one worked:

Smith's had/has a catalina coupon (printed at the register when you make a purchase) that you receive when you buy 3 Johnson and Johnson products at once. I bought 3 of these soaps, which are $0.99 each. The coupon is for $3 off of any 3 Johnson and Johnson products. So after I made the initial purchase of 3 of them, I took the coupon back, loaded up on the Buddies soaps, and had them ring them through 3 at a time, each time using the coupon that printed from the previous 3. Since they are $3 off 3 and 3 of them cost only $2.98, they were free :) I still have the coupon from the last purchase, so I can go back when I'm in town again and use those to get more.

That's all :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

I'm not a Cheapskate, I prefer to be called extremely greedy

Let me preface this by saying one of my biggest weaknesses has been that I am NOT frugal. I have never liked to take the time to search for deals, comparison shop or any of that stuff.

However, when I had another baby (so 2 in diapers) and noticed I was spending $700 a month on groceries, and gas prices were through the roof, I decided that maybe, juuuuuust maybe, it would be worth my time to try and save a litte.

So I started getting the paper, clipping coupons, watching the ads, and picking Kimber's brain, and was amazed at how much I have cut back our grocery bill, without cutting back our groceries. In fact, I've been able to buy much more for storage than I ever did before.

Yesterday I got:

10 liters of A&W and 7up- Retail price 23.90 total- for FREE
40 bags of Green Giant Fresh Steamers Veggies- Retail 99.60 total- for FREE
Two 24 packs of bottled water- Retail $15.58- for FREE

A slew of other stuff for very cheap....

3 Jumbo size bags of Huggies Diapers- Retail $40 total, for $15.50

I was spending $350 every 2 weeks on groceries. Yesterday I spent $163 and saved $257. And I was able to get 8 bags of stuff for my storage, that I usually wouldnt have squeezed into our monthly grocery budget.

Kudo's to Kimber for all her advice, emails, and tips, and Brittany for all her forwards. You're helping me a ton! If anyone is interested, I have a link to Kimber's blog, where she tells a lot of her secrets. It's on my list and it's Kimber LOVES a deal! (Hope you don't mind Kimber!).

The thing is, I am more likely to be referred to as a shopaholic than a cheapskate, really. I LOVE to spend money! I just have a lot of other things I would rather spend it on than groceries :)

I also found out about a Caregiver's Cash back program. If you buy items to care for an individual (including children under 5) you qualify. The link is You just buy 5 items that are on the list and send the form in and you get cash back. For example, I get $1 cash back for each package of Huggies I buy (with my 2 boys, that is A LOT of huggies!). This is part of how I got the Huggies so cheap. Rite Aid had them on sale for 3/$33 ($11 a pack). Then they had their own single check rebate on them for $10 for the three, making them $3/$23. Then I had coupons for $1.50 off each pack, making them 3/$18.50. Then there is the caregiver's rebate of $1 off each package, making it 3/$15.50.

So just because I can, I will probably come on here each time I do this to brag about what I got for free/cheap. And I'll pat myself on the back for finally getting around to building up my food storage to more than the 3 months-ish I had beforehand.

Which brings me to my next project, which is cleaning out my storage room and adding shelving so I can FIT all this food and stuff!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Really Daniel? Really???

WARNING: If you have a husband like mine- impulsive, admittedly self-indulgent, and when he wants something, nothing will stop him from making it happen), and you have a crazy dream about him doing something completely ridiculous (but that, were it possible, he would love to do), DO NOT TELL HIM ABOUT THIS DREAM!!!

Case in Point.

Daniel and computers. It's ridiculous really. I dont think I really need to explain because the pictures and story will speak for themselves.

A few months ago I had this silly dream. I dreamed that Daniel came home and told me he was hooking up our big screen HD TV and using it as a computer monitor. While he was doing it, I was rolling my eyes and saying, "Daniel, you are crazy. You are NOT using a $3000 television as a computer monitor!"), all the while, he was doing just that.

Now, why, you may ask, would I have such a dream? Here is a clue:

THIS is the computer in our room. Yes, what you see is 4 monitors. And yes, he can scroll across them all as if they were one. But that's not the end of it. We have another computer downstairs and the other day, ANOTHER monitor, that looks exactly like one of these, showed up at my door. WTH?? He said he wanted to move one of these to the downstairs computer (I mean, heaven forbid we have a monitor down there on a computer we rarely use, that is NOT a flat screen. Unacceptable!). So of course, it made sense that we must buy another monitor (otherwise, this computer would only have 3 and how could we live with that??) So another monitor it was.

Does the craziness end there. No, but here we go.

Yes, what you see is our 52 inch flat sceen now serving as a computer monitor. That is indeed Yahoo messenger there. And yes, he was giggling with giddiness over this. Should have kept the dang dream to myself :) LOL.

Only Daniel, I tell you. Gotta love him.

Friday, October 10, 2008

For Old Times Sake

I was cleaning out my computer, getting rid of any pics I no longer need when I came across this beauty!!!

Some of you that read this are in this photo :) Remember back in the day hehe...
Okay, so this photo is from my 9th grade graduation. In this photo are some people who I still consider some of the best friends I have ever had- whether I've seen them recently or not. There are some people who you will always love, always feel lucky to know- and this photo reminds me of some of those people.
Anyway, so I was cleaning out the photos on my computer and I came across this, so I thought it would be fun to blog about it and tell some of the story to go along with it. In fact, I think I will periodically post on old pic from my childhood and do just that. So we'll start with this one. Forgive me for making fun of myself, please.
I know you are all LOVING the dress. Oh, in case you didnt know, I am the one in the front row, middle right. I know, what's up with the brown hair? I'll get to that.
So this was such a big day :) LOL. My mom took me to get my hair done. My boyfriend at the time, Doug (yes, you all remember that one, dont you- we totally "went" together- for like a week- which just so happened to be THIS week) was going to meet me and my friends at the dance (since I wasn't 16 it was he and his friends, who I also "went" with for like a week- just a different week), so I was all excited to get dressed up with my new dress that I drove 3 hours to find (no, I couldnt drive- my MOM drove me 3 hours). Im drifting anyway, my mom said I could get my hair done at the- warning here- beauty school (this is your first hint of trouble in case you didnt pick that up). I had been there before and gotten what they called "clear" something or other that was just meant to make your hair shinier. So when we got there, we told them I wanted the same thing I always got. The girl who usually did my hair was on maternity leave. So her substitute pulled "my" card and got to work. To shorten this up a bit, a supervisor was called over somewhere during the process, at which time she asked me what color my hair was when I came in (to which I responded "blonde") and was told it was now brown with green streaks. The dear lady had pulled the wrong card and colored my hair a nice color called "Moroccan Sand". I stayed for several hours while they bleached the heck out of my hair and by the time I left, it was a reddish brown, but at least the green was gone. Oh well, I still had that FABULOUS dress :) So we had graduation. I met up with my BF at the dance and his first question was "wasn't your hair blonde when I saw you earlier today?" Ummm, yeah it was. But anyone who knows my luck could have seen that one coming a mile away.
So then I got this pic, which makes me smile all these years later.
To April, Melanie, Stephanie, Melisa and Jessica -and Karen (why weren't you in this pic?)- this goes out to you guys. Thanks for such great memories and for being incredible friends. For the love of LA Gear, splatter painted jeans, Girbaud, FHA, Cougarettes, the Dungeon, Vanilla Ice, greased lockers, red gym shorts, the ramp, Mr. Fehlberg and Coach Fielder. To Mr. Auva'a kicking over Aaron Mecham's desk. To Kathy Cowley getting mad at me for hanging out with a boy on our FHA trip. To growing up in a town that was 1 square mile. Here's to the times we had at Canyon View Jr. High :)

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Girls Gone Wild (or as close as it gets in our family :)

L to R (ish): Natasha (SIL), Brigham (newphew, Lyndi (SIL), Hannah (niece), Savannah (daughter), Janna (niece), Grandma Janet, Miriam (sister), Kiana (niece), Donna (mom), Me, Jayden in cognito.

What do you get when you send a mother of 4 on the road with 2 of her children, a group of her friends, her mother, her grandmother, her sister, 2 of her sister in laws, 3 of her nieces and 1 of her baby nephews?

Well, what I got was a break, and a lot of shopping done.

Way back in the day, in like, August or so, all the girls in my fam decided it was about dang time we went for a girl's trip. My mom had a seminar in Salt Lake the first weekend in Oct so we thought that would be the perfect time and place. And that's where the craziness all began.

Then, more recently we (we being my friends and I) realized that it was Tammy's 40th (I mean 29th) birthday, which meant a girl's trip was in order there too. Lucky for me (and if you know me, you know luck doesn't come my way often), they decided to go down on Thursday, when my plan with my fam was for Friday through Sunday, so I was able to do both in one trip.

So Thursday morn I headed down with myself, my daughter, my Gma and my baby. I dropped my grandma and Savannah off at the hotel and met up with the girls at Taipan. Heaven, I tell you, that place. After that, we went to eat at Cafe Rio and hit the mall for some more spendage. I got some fun things at Taipan and some great clothes at the other stores. Ahhh..retail therapy.

Around 4ish, the crew headed home and I drove to meet up with my mom and company. Most of the group wasn't coming in until Friday, so my grandma, my mom, myself, my daughter, and my baby, hung out and ordered in :)

Everyone else arrived on Friday, later in the day. And that is when the craziness all started (it was all Miriam's fault for sure. She WAS always the brave one!) We were getting settled that night. Miriam, me, my kids, my mom and Gma Janet were in one room. Somehow we got on the discussion about the Hilary Clinton/Sarah Palin SNL video (if you have been living under a rock, you can watch it at In the vidoe, Sarah Palin uses the word MILF. My dear, sweet, at times naive mother didn't know what it was when she watched the video, so (prior to the trip) she did what any reasonable, completely insane person would do- she googled it. Poor mom. She is no longer naive. Shortly after, my grandma said she needed to take a shower and put curlers in her hair so she could look all purty. I said, "You mean so you can be a MILF? A GILF?" Silly girls.

Anyhoo...after we stopped laughing about my mom's little google misstep, I realized that my sister Miriam had my mom's phone so I whispered to her to change mom's banner to say "MILF". So sho nuff, soon it read "Donna is a MILF" and my mom had no idea. We got settled into bed, but like a 12 year old at a slumber party, I couldn't stop giggling.

The next morning, we got up and got ready to go shopping. Oh, let me not forget, I did get up and run 4 miels on the treadmill downstairs. We went to the Gateway Mall where I was able to FINALLY buy my jeans at Express (it's the only place I buy jeans, the only place that carries my size in longs, and we dont have any in Idaho). I bought 3 pair, including some skinny jeans (that my daughter thinks are totally "in"). After that, we ate at my fave restaurant in the world, Tucano's, where I tried my darndest to make sure I never fit in those skinny jeans.

After we were done shopping there, we went to Taipan where I went NUTS and got so much fun stuff for my house. When we had blown all our money, we headed back to the hotel once again. The kids swam in the pool off and on the whole time we were there. It was a blast. Oh, and my MILF of a mom finally saw what we did to her phone around Saturday evening sometime.

Sunday morning, we turned on conference and then checked out of the hotel to head home. But since the rain had finally let up, Miriam and I decided to stay and go visit temple square before heading home. I took a few pictures, we talked and let our girls play together, and then we headed home.

I wont tell you what my house looked like when I got home. Im still trying to block that image from my brain. Anyway, here are just a few snapshots from temple square.

Friday, October 3, 2008


Savannah: "Mom, I think I know why Grandma Janet and Grandpa Gary are still alive."
Me: "What? Why?"
Savannah: "They must eat a LOT of healthy food. Because they should be dead by now!"

Later on....

Savannah: "Mom, I don't like your shirt" (a new one I just bought)
Me: "Too bad. I like it."
Savannah: "You look like a dude."

a bit later....

Savannah: " Mom, I think I know something you can do to look less Dude-ish"....

and lastly (and do NOT ask me where this came from)

Savannah: "Mom, you are useless!"
Me: "What? Why am I useless?"
Savannah: "Oh, no, no...I just meant for shooting people and stuff..."