Wednesday, June 30, 2010

'Eclipsing' my Opinion

On Facebook the entire buzz right now is about 'Eclipse'. The first showings have ended and everyone is jumping on to give their report.

No, this is not why I am still awake.

But I do have a ticket to a showing of 'Eclipse' for Thursday night with the girls.

So, I figure since I am awake and since sleep seems to be eluding me tonight, I will share my recent discovery with you. (You may not want to thank me just yet.)

I read the "Twilight" series. I admit-- I enjoyed them. Not the whole love story part necessarily, because who is stupid enough to fall in love with a vampire, right? Or I guess a werewolf for that matter. I enjoyed the action and creativity of the story. Then came the movies. The first was pitiful. The second, injected with more money and maybe some steroids, showed how millions and muscles can improve a movie. Although, I still don't picture Rob Pattinson as Edward, and I wish potty mouth (read the latest EW and you'll see what I'm talking about) Kristen Stewart, as Bella, could learn to act like she actually loved that vampire boyfriend of hers, the one ingredient they had right was Taylor Lautner, as Jacob.

That was until the other day.

I had never seen Taylor in anything else besides the 'Twilight' movies, but I did hear he starred in a movie called "Shark Boy and Lava Girl" a few years ago. I had never seen this movie and actually I still haven't, but it was on the Disney Channel the other day and I just caught this scene-

Who wouldn't have nightmares after watching young Taylor, a.k.a Sharkboy, dance around in his fake six pack shark costume crooning that song?

The one good ingredient for me has been tainted and I don't know if I can ever look at him and his real six pack seriously again. Jacob has been ruined for me forever....or at least, until Thursday night.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My New BFF

I am here to tell you that the best things in life are indeed, FREE.

Like my new BFF.

(Yes, this post is about laundry.  Hurry! There's still time to close the window and save your self !)

My Facebook friend, Lara, introduced us. I guess, that my BFF's other half wasn't contributing to the friendship like she should and Lara decided it was time their friendship was over. Seeing that my BFF was still a good and willing friend and hearing that I was in need of just such a friend, Lara hooked us up for FREE. How nice is that? Especially since I cannot tell you how well we get along.

She has all the qualities I could ever ask to have in a friend like her. First, she is efficient. She dried a full load of towels last night in 40 minutes instead of the double that time it would have taken my old dryer. She is also quiet and soft spoken, not loud and boisterous, with "its all about me" volume like my old one. While the towels dried, the kids watched TV in the next room without having to turn it up to ear piercing decibels in order to hear over her while she worked. It was like she wasn't even there. And finally, she is fast; faster than I can fold or put away. She beats me every time. I don't mind; I am more than happy to let her win. I'm just nice like that you see.

It's a beautiful thing really, our relationship that is, there is lots of give and take. I give and give and she just keeps taking.

So, yes, I'm a little excited about my 'new to me' dryer and just when I thought there could be anything  exciting about doing laundry.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Blessing in Disguise

Prior to our vacation fun, we had wedding fun with our niece Katie, and her sweetheart Kendall.

Theirs is a fairytale for sure, but that is her story to blog about.
This is mine....

Their sealing ceremony was slated for 7:50 a.m. in the Salt Lake Temple, which meant we would have to leave by 7:00 to get there on time. This also meant we would need a babysitter. I don't know about you, but I don't know many people who are very happy to get up at the crack of dawn during the summer to watch my kids... unless you are my mother and their grandma.  Since the reception was north of Salt Lake and closer to my parent's house than ours, it just made sense to take the kids to their house the night before, stay overnight, and take the kids to the reception on our way back to Provo. It was the perfect plan.

We left to go to my parents home later than planned which raised my anxiety level for reasons not important to the story, so I'm not including them. Just know I was a little stressed. Anyways, as we were coming upon American Fork, I was assaulted by a smell. This smell was pungent and nasty. It came out of nowhere and it puzzled me. I noticed that there were fields off to the west... It is spring and with crops being planted surely farmers fertilize their fields... that must be what the smell is. This was a great theory, an excellent theory in fact, until I caught a glimpse of Emma out of the corner of my eye.

It's funny how many things can go through your mind in a split second- Where did she get chocolate from? The kids ate all the fudge covered shortbread yesterday. She must have found a stray melty M&M in her car seat. Hold on...that smell's still here and the fields are gone.... It was as these thoughts concluded that Emma said, "Mommy, my fingers are poopy." and traffic came to a standstill because of construction.

I won't write the thoughts or words that went through my mind at that juncture. I still want you to like me.

I phoned ahead to Richard in the truck. (Yes, we had 2 vehicles. Mainly because I think we enjoy wasting money on gas and he doesn't have to listen to my music. Just kidding....well, at least about the wasting money part.) Anyway...we pulled off the freeway into a parking lot and I opened the lift gate to retrieve the duffel bag containing the diapers and wipes.

It wasn't there. 

I stood there for a brief second in disbelief at the state of my luck.

It was at home...sitting on my cedar the end of my bed...where I packed it.



That duffel bag also contained all of the kid's clothes; their jammies, play clothes, and dress clothes for the reception the next day. We needed that bag...and not only for Emma's 'fudgy' fingers. 

Richard headed home to get the forgotten bag. I found some cleansing wipes in the first aid kit and attempted to get rid of the source of the smell before hitting the road and hightailing it to my mom's bathtub. 

Somewhere between Lagoon and the Layton Hills Mall it occurred to me that God has to have a sense of humor and must enjoy coming up with creative ways in which to "bless" the lives of his children. Because the truth is we really needed that bag because according to MapQuest my parent's home is 74.4 miles and if I actually drove the speed limit, 1 hour and 20 minutes away from mine. Getting there without that bag would have thrown the biggest  monster of a monkey wrench into the best laid plans. So I am grateful that He chose to send a blessing my way that night....even if it came disguised in something less than heavenly.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A No Brainer

If you love it and it's FREE, then why not?


That's right, there's no reason not to.

It's a no brainer.

Are you wondering what on earth I'm talking about? Well, let me tell you.

Some of you have expressed interest in my new blog header... it's pretty sweet I know, but what is even sweeter is that you can have your very own for FREE.

Yep, FREE. 

For a limited time the creator is offering to make your blog its very own Alphabetography blog header to grace and liven the look of your blog for absolutely nothing.

How do you sign up for your very own little masterpiece? 
You can get the details by clicking HERE.

And you better hurry! The offer is only good until tomorrow at noon.

I told you it was a no brainer.

What are you still doing here?  GO! Don't even bother commenting....Time's a wastin'!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

How I Know They Are Glad to be Home...

Yesterday, I found myself mostly tethered to the bottom half of my house. I was busy getting caught up on laundry, paying bills, banking, returning e-mails, downloading pictures, reading blogs, and Facebook- you know doing the important stuff that has to be done after you've been away. The kids played relatively quietly upstairs. I rarely saw them except for the occasional request for a drink or meal. PJs weren't exchanged for clothes until friends showed up late in the day and when a friend suggested they play at his house my son declined, wanting to stay home. I couldn't blame him; it was nice to just stay where we were.

Later I went upstairs and found what had been keeping  my little munchkins so busily employed. I knew that all of the Legos were being played with as I found two fully clothed children in the bathtub the night before (and a third who I would bet good money on was in the tub until he heard me coming in) testing the seaworthiness of their creations. But yesterday their creativity stretched from ships to forts and bases which were all promptly bombed and blown to smithereens in a myriad of different, yet ultimately cool ways.
Or so I hear.

Operation Destruction, in turn littered Emma's and the playroom with toys, stuffys, action figures, Legos, and books galore.
To describe it in a word- disaster.

Today, we made Mickey Mouse sugar cookies for the neighbors who helped out with the cat, turtle, and the pile of mail I forgot to suspend delivery of.

We also played with play dough.

Then we painted.

Basically, we just moved from one mess to another.

In other words, things at the Parke home are back to normal.
It's good to be back.

I think.

BTW- I don't always take picture of messes around my house. But my new camera finally came, after we left for Disneyland I might add, and he and I are taking some time and of course pictures in order to get to know one another.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Vacation Hang Over

Vacations despite their good intentions, can be hard on you. The travel, lack of schedule, and just plain being out of your normal environment can take its toll on your psyche and physical body. Just ask poor Dallin

After spending 11 hours on Saturday crammed in the back seat of our minivan with two brothers, countless souvenirs, and fast food wrappers as we made our way home from sunny/smoggy So Cal, I think the hour drive to visit our Grandpas yesterday pushed him over the edge.

After visiting with Grandma & Grandpa Parke, we made our way to Grandma Jeanne and Pop Marlin's house where Dallin, after complaining of a sick stomach, lost all color in his face and started to turn a ghastly shade of green.  A trusty barf bucket was located and he took up residence on the floor of the upstairs bathroom. Richard checked in on him after a few minutes and this was what he found...

...poor Dallin suffering from a vacation hang over.

Luckily, it was nothing that a little nap on Grandma Jeanne's fluffy mauve bath mats couldn't fix.

Hmmm....Do you think those magic mats could help with the vacation laundry abyss that's awaiting me?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

This Interruption Was Brought to You By....

This 2+ week interruption Of a View from the Parke Bench was brought to you courtesy of the last week of school and the first week of summer vacation.

Events worthy of being too busy to post included;

-Benjamin's Pre-School graduation. He was beyond ready to move on from pre-school and is excited to start kindergarten in the fall. I, his mother, am really excited too. I think his pre-school teacher was ecstatic.

Dallin's acting debut in his class play/musical titled the "Three Piggy Opera". He played the part of one of the very nervous and shy straw peddlers.

As you can see he was a complete natural.

-Ashton's class award presentation where he received an award for making it into the "Foot Hall of Fame". To make it into the "Foot Hall of Fame," one must read as many books that are at least 120 pages as your foot is tall. And for a 5th grader whose feet are bigger than his mothers that is quite a feat. No pun intended.

The first week of summer;

-Memorial Day found us up north visiting with family, barbecuing, and sitting around the campfire. We made S'mores and a mess with these gigantic marshmallows that were about 4 times the size of a normal one.
They were awesome. Can you tell?

-Pedicures in the backyard. I did Emma's and she did mine. She gives a new definition to 'Glitter Toes'.

-A new chore system. Like anything new this is taking some getting used to and called for the resurrection of the "Nazi Mom".
(Sorry, no pictures are available because she ain't pretty.)

-Lessons in getting dressed by ourselves. These lesson include, but are not exclusive to the correct appendages in which underwear are applied.

(Note- If you are ever in need of a straight jacket try inserting the offending child's arms into the underwear and wrapping them around the shoulders. It works pretty well. I am considering this trick for all 4 children on our upcoming vacation.)

-Simply enjoying summer with my friends. Four of the best you'll ever meet.

Thank you for your patience. Regular posting, which is usually irregular at its best, will now resume into your regular blog reading which obviously, is already in progress. 

*Sorry about all the camera phone pictures, but I figured bad pictures were better than no pictures at all.

My camera is having issues with its shutter and is currently awaiting surgery at the camera hospital. No need to fret, if by some unfortunate circumstance he does not return, a replacement is already on its way.