For Justin

Eliza squawked for my attention just as I cradled my neighbor’s newborn in my arms a few weeks ago.  A familiar feeling came over me as I lifted her to join us.  This was my life not so long ago- a one yr old on one hip, and a newborn in the opposite arm. 
Now my newborn is walking (sort of), and it has been brought to my attention that I have been remiss in my duty to our readers.  Apparently, my brother-in-law, Justin, awaits our new posts with bated breath.  Who knew?  I understand, though; we are fascinating. 
Take Levi, for instance.  I bet you didn’t know he has his own counting system.  That’s right; he starts counting at 2 instead of one, then leaves out every number between 3 and 7.  He even says “How are you?” all in one word with a drawl so thick you’d swear the boy owned his own spurs. 
Try it his way:  “How’yew?”   
This little man skips right over addressing “Heavenly Father” by name- just cuts to the chase with, “Thank you for this day” when he begins each prayer.  Hey, we waited so long for the boy to talk, we’re just relieved he has distinguishable words.  (Is distinguishable a word?)
Levi loves to be told he looks “smooth,”  and if you turn on Michael Jackson’s The Way You Make Me Feel  he’ll show you just how smooth he is.  Serious.  I should charge.
He’s loads of fun.  Just remember- if you read him The Three Billy Goats Gruff, go easy on the troll voice.  It freaks him out a little- ok, a lot.  Maybe I got a little into it.
Samantha, on the other hand, loves the troll voice.  She’s currently enjoying Sally Jean the Bicycle Queen, a fabulous find.  Check it out from your local library:
I’ll also mention that Matt and I enjoyed reading her a few of the Frances books by Russell Hoban the last few months for the same reasons Mrs Piggle Wiggle is a crowd pleaser around here.
Currently, her host of imaginary friends visit our home often, and insists she’s marrying Levi when she grows up.  This might break a few neighbor boys’ hearts since I’m pretty sure they were planning proposals already, but for now, it helps Daddy breathe a little easier. 
I breathe easier knowing she can now be employed with simple duties around the house for a small fee (usually a quarter). 
Most of her money finds its way to the ice cream truck that drives down our street no matter the weather.  Push-pop in January, anyone? 
All her buckles and belts are still too tight; her tags are too itchy; her shoes are too small; and her shirts still don’t lie flat enough behind her when she sits in the car.  Just so you know.
But she looks like a dream doing that fancy new cart-wheel she just learned.
Eliza’s looking dreamy herself.
Truthfully, she has no interest in walking, but lunges instead to her desired destination.  We’re working on it.
Her favorite things to eat aren’t really edible as her favorite snacks are paper and crayons.
We’ve learned our baby does have special talent, though- a knack for pinching the most sensitive part of your face in her little hand so hard you’re convinced she’s been training those tiny muscles for that precise purpose…
Today Matt taught her how to climb on the rocking horse and rock away.  She’s rather pleased with herself. 
She’s also just the right size for cuddling, and just cute enough that it’s still adorable when she says uh-oh, then drops the item in her hands as many times as you’re willing to pick it up.
She’s pretty sure books are overrated, as they usually contain that paper she’s so fond of eating, but give me time- I’ll convert her yet.
Now to the adults whose lives are far less entertaining.
Matt still hangs off ridiculously tall buildings.  I try not to think about it.
I still think he’s devilishly handsome- who am I kidding?  Devilish?  Matt?  I almost laughed out loud just typing that.  The man has never been able to tell a single lie with a straight face, and he’s almost as excited to see the ice cream truck as Samantha- but he is adorable.
He’s headed out for a scout camp soon, and we’ll miss him.
He only reads articles I read to him as I follow him around the house, or the ones I leave face up on the toilet lid, or folded open in the nearby magazine rack for him to find.  WHAT?  Don’t shake your head.  You know you’ve contemplated extreme measures to get your husband to read The Five Love Languages.
Me?  Well, I do Love. Love. LOVE. my garden.  And my yard.  And that playscape that frees up my hands to work in said garden.  And yard.  Did I mention I like the garden, and the yard? 
If Matt weren’t so pleased with the results of my obsession, he might try to commit me.  No embellishment.  It’s BLISSFUL getting acquainted with my little corner of earth.  I can’t walk out there without pulling a weed- and once I get started… Well, in truth, I’m only typing this because it’s dark outside, and I can’t see out there. 
I love my calling (my volunteer job at my church) working with the children of our ward.
And since I know you’re wondering, I’m reading Nancy Gibbs in Time cause I think she has an interesting opinion, some cjane, a parenting book that’s decent so far, and I just finished probably the worst classic I’ve ever read- honestly, I wouldn’t even mention it by name except that I want to warn the innocent out there. 
WARNING to all well-meaning people just wanting to read important works, beautiful words, or influential authors. 
The Hunchback of Notre Dame.  Ugh.  Just ugh.  I hated it.  Loathed it.  I still can’t believe I read it all the way through, and that was my classic for the summer.  It was almost as bad as reading Moa: The Unknown Story last summer, except that I didn’t finish Moa on account of the awfulness.
Now I need another book.  Any nominations? 
Since no one ever comments here, I’m thinking I might get more feedback if I make this my Facebook status:  Just finished Hunchback.  Please recommend a rebound classic. 
There you are, folks; you’re updated (including Justin).  Happy reading…


  1. LOVE it!!!

    I TOO wait with baited breath for a quip from your corner of the world (I check weekly though…not daily) 🙂

    Thank you for being your delightful self and weaving your voice into your writing so well (I can hear your voice when I read your posts…and that’s a compliment) 😀

    I can recommend the book I just finished (I get to check out, on average, two books a YEAR for pleasure reading right now but someday I’ll reacquaint myself with that dusty passion of mine)…anywhoo… “In Defense of Food” by Michael Pollan
    I totally loved it and I think you’d enjoy it too 😀 Otherwise my reading is limited to lactation and parenting related materials but even that selection is pretty limited due to time constraints.

    LOVE hearing about your amazing brood 😀 Thanks for sharing!


  2. Jamie, thanks for the update on the local Martin clan. Watership Down by Richard Adams is a tale that I greatly enjoyed back in high school, look into it.

    I’m glad to heat that Levi’s draw is thick, maybe he will run on CST instead of M(Mormon)ST.


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