An Actual Conversation

Allen {appearing irritated, making lunch}.

Me {across room, silently judging observing the process}.

Allen {picking at sandwich roll}.

Me {knowing the rolls were on their way out}: Are those moldy? 

Allen {"get-off-me" look with snarky inflection}: There's no other bread out. I'll just pick this off.

Me {disgusted}: DUDE! There are plenty of rolls in the freezer. Just defrost one and you won't have to eat moldy bread. Ugh. 

Allen {now legitimately grumpy}: I don't like the way defrosted bread tastes. 


Trunk or Treat

Our new ward held it's trunk or treat festivities tonight.

Both girls chose to be witches this year. 

Addie kept doing this "evil witch" HA! HA! HA! to every passerby. She was also on a mission to get her candy tonight and held her ground among the big kids. She caused a few laughs with her determination. 
Emmy was a little under the weather today and we even contemplated keeping her home. She perked up enough to join in the fun, but didn't don her costume. You'll have to tune in after All Hallows Eve to see her all dressed up.
Emmy checking out the scene.

The costume parade. Lexi won an award!
As with any great family outing, this one was total chaos and pandemonium. But so much fun.



Dear porch, how do I love thee?

The welcoming committee. Living room is on the right with dining room closest to the kitchen.

View from the living room looking toward stairs and hallway.

Looking from the kitchen into the dining and living rooms.
Hall. Closet and one (of 4) bathroom.
Looking into the family room. The other room off to the left is a bedroom with full bath. We're gonna use it as a playroom while the kids need one.
My favorite part. Built in Bosch gas range. Convection oven to boot. Every one's invited to dinner.
Family room.
Laundry room.
Other side of laundry room.
Second downstairs bath. This is the one for the playroom. 
Three car tandem garage. Hello workshop for Allen.
The backyard. So, for the next 6 months or something, our blog will (once again) be exclusively about the yard.
Going upstairs. Aren't you glad I'm here to be your tour guide. I bet you were wondering where we were headed. 
Looking down on the living room from the stairs.
Bedroom at the top of the stairs. 
Same bedroom. There are a total of 6. No, we will not have enough kids to fill them all. But you can come and visit anytime you want.
Upstairs hall bath.
Hall desk.
View from the master down the hall. 
Master bath. His and her closets at either end.
Three guesses as to what this is.
Too bad I hate baths. Nice to look at though.
Oh, the vanity!
My room with a view.
Casa de Riddle.


Sweet Lexi

I grew up - literally, starting at age 3 - watching horror movies with my Dad. When I would ask him why something happened, he would say "Because the director wanted it that way." I always knew it wasn't real. I never had nightmares about any of it. But I did love the suspense that builds up as the creepy music takes over and you know what is coming, but do you dare look?!?

With Halloween upon us, I'm eager to embrace the entire spectacle. This is, by far, my most favorite Holiday. I look forward to a whole month of scary movies on television. I love the twist of reality. I love the creativity of the entire season. And, I do love to be scared.

My dad came to town tonight to watch Lexi's game. We then made our way to the local Halloween store; we had been planning on going for weeks. We were totally in our element. Little Addie was giggling at the animated ghosts and ghouls.

My sweet Lexi, however, she was not in her element. She is a sensitive spirit. She takes every conversation to heart. Processess scenarios over and over. Worries endlessly about things little girls shouldn't worry about.

Lexi had begged to come to the store. She was so excited to help me get ready for the season. But, as soon as we went to the darkest and scariest part of the store, she was overcome with fear. She started crying and wanted to leave. 

She was frightened. That is a feeling I very rarely identify with so it is a foreign concept for me to cover. We all showed Lexi that every scary being in the store was not real. That everything was just pretend. That it was moving because it was mechanical, not alive. Even Addie tried to console her older sister with kids words and hugs. 

As we got into the car, Lexi said, "I'm sorry, mom. I was trying to be brave." 

On the way home, I told Lexi this:

"It's ok to be afraid. You are a special girl who knows what feels right and wrong. That is a gift from your Father in Heaven. To know already what is good in this life is something you should never be sorry about. Never ignore that feeling. If you ever feel like what is going on around you isn't good, you leave that place. You never feel bad for trusting this feeling inside."

I then assured her that if any of our decorations made her feel yucky, we wouldn't put them out. We are going to decorate together and she gets the final word. 

I'm so grateful for this sweet little girl who is already very aware of her internal barometer. I'm so grateful she is already paying attention to the subtle feelings she is getting to help guide her to the things that are good and worth while in this life. She is truly special. I will happily foster her desire to be around uplifting material even if it means having the least scary house in the block. 


Do As I Say, Not As I Do

Lexi {convincingly}: C'mon Addie. Just jump off the couch like this onto your knees...

Addie: no.

Lexi {with more conviction}: you just do it like this...

Addie: no.

Me {teaching voice}: Lexi, she's already said no. When someone says no, say ok. Don't try to make someone do something they aren't comfortable doing.

A few minutes pass.

Lexi {peer pressure voice}: So you just do it like this...

Me {irritation rising}: Lexi! She said NO. Leave her alone.

Lexi {defiantly but trying to garner sympathy}: I just don't know what NO means.

Me {totally irritated}: Well, how 'bout I spank you until you do?

Lexi: No.

Me {eyebrow raised}: Aaaah. You do understand what NO means.

Lexi {silence}.

Me {internal high five}.

About Me

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What started as a way to communicate with far away friends and family has become a place for this horse trainer/HR manager turned stay at home mom of 3 girls to hold on to a bit of her own identity. It's my take on the ins and outs, the ups and downs, the thoughts and feelings, the mistakes and triumphs of this family as we bumble our way to eternity.