Thursday, March 29, 2007

Hawaii--giving more meaning to the "aloha" state

Disclaimer: Please refrain from reading the following blog if you are sensitive to discussing bodily functions, if you have eaten anytime in the last 2 hours or if you had the notion that I was above discussing my own bodily functions. If you fall under any of the above noted categories, you should refrain from reading the rest of this blog entry. Hence forth, you have been forewarned.

Hawaii, the 50th state, is most often called the "aloha" state, meaning the state that shares love freely. This last Tuesday I had the opportunity in the bathroom stall of a Ross Dress for Less store to witness Hawaii's spirit of "aloha" first hand.

Earlier in the day, Mark and I decided to eat at a restaurant that we had never been to before. (This restaurant shall remain nameless, because it is quite a popular restaurant and I wouldn't want to sway any readers from eating at this restaurant.) The food tasted excellent and I whole heartedly devoured my dish. We left the restaurant and ran a few errands which ended up taking 4 or 5 hours. As we were finishing our errands Mark and I stopped at a shopping center that had a Ross Dress for Less. Mark needed to find another pair of nice dress pants for work, so he went into the Ross while I went next door to Pier 1 (a fabulous store to buy home decor). Within minutes of entering the Pier 1, I found the cutest set of designer decor pillows, and my stomach felt like it was erupting within. All of a sudden I felt light headed and an intense clenching in my stomach and intestinal track. As small beads of perspiration formed on my head and nick, I quickly dropped the pillows of at the register, mumbling to the cashier that she would have to hold the pillows for me, and I exited the store. I ran/clenched/ran to the bathrooms at the back of the Ross and entered into one of two stalls in the small bathroom. I sat down and found immediate least from that end. It seems I was in the throws of food poisoning! As I sat haunched over the toilet in the restroom, I glanced down and noticed that toilet paper was strewn all over the floor of the restroom, but no toilet paper hung in the dispenser! "Great, there is no toilet paper," I muttered as I scanned the restroom floor inspecting the toilet paper on the ground...I was going to have to be resourceful!

Then in the other stall of the small, two-stall restroom, I heard the distinct accent of an older Filipino woman. "Eh you, you got da diarrhea o' wat?" I couldn't believe my ears, was she asking me about my bodily projections? "Um, yes," I timidly returned. "You no sound so good. I got da paper. You need?" She continued. "Yes, thank you." was all I could say, thinking our conversation was over when she handed me a wad of toilet paper under the stall wall. But to my surprise and amusement, she continued. "I tink you need more." Apparently she was listening to me...She passed another large wad of toilet paper. "I got the diarrhea too. I ate da Saimin and I no feel so good too. Wat You eat?" Well, I could see at this point a conversation was going to ensue, so I, thankful for the shared toilet paper, engaged in the Restroom spirit of Aloha. We talked about what we ate, her recent gal bladder surgery, my 2nd and 3rd rounds, and 10 minutes later when it was all over, I found that I had made a new, old Filipino friend.

May the spirit of Aloha be with you too!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Cake CAKE and more Cake!!!

Eventhough Henry's birthday isn't until Sunday, his "friends of Shrek" party is Saturday. Henry will be turning four, so he chose some friends from his play group and church to come and enjoy a day playing Shrek themed games, dressing up like Shrek and then eating Shrek cake. I made the cake tonight so I wouldn't have to worry about it before the party tomorrow. Here are a few pictures of my Shrek cake. I will post party pictures later.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

George is 6!!!

Here is the birthday boy!

I can hardly believe that George is already 6! It seems like just a short time has pessed since Mark and I were struggling students, living in Orem and expecting our first baby. Yesterday we celebrated George's birthday by having a superhero training camp party. When George's friends showed up they each recieved a superhero name (i.e. Frost Man, Blaster, Speed o boy). As the kids arrived they were given a superhero mask to color and decorate and once they finished, they were awarded a special superhero cape (old cut up sheets with ribbon sewn as ties). We played superhero training games like pass the Kryptonite, toss the bomb away, save the musical planets and superhero superhero FLASH. After the games the kids ate corn dogs, chips, and veggies and then we cut into the superhero cake. The party was a lot of work, and I think next year we will just have a family outing, but George absolutely loved his party, so it made it worth the effort. Also, eventhough it sounds like this party would be expensive it actually cost just under 30 dollars for EVERYTHING!!! Thus, that is why I tried to be creative, I am always looking for a way to cut expenses.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

You cant have your Cake and eat it too...

I have officially been "off" sugar for 42 days! Yes, I stopped eating most sugars a little over a month ago for health reasons. (Most who know me have noticed that I have an insatiable appetite for sugar. My body does not seem to have the "you have had enough sugar" signal.) So seeing the line of diabetes that runs in my father's side of the family and noticing my own tendencies, I decieded to limit most sugars in my diet....

Ok, that having been said, every now and then I have to make foods that are high sugar content foods. And it is on those days that my yearning for sugar comes back with a vengence. Yesterday was my cousin Sarah's 25th birthday, and we celebrated her birthday at my house today on St. Patricks day. For her birthday I made a single layer green cake. I improvised on the frosting decor, practicing some of the fun tips I have picked up from my sister (the ultimate cake decorator...who I think buried her talents i.e. the parable) Anyway, It took me 6 hours from start to finish to bake the cake, cool it, level it, decorate it and then clean up the mess. But I was please with the final product.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Ocho!

As of Tuesday, it has been 8 years since Mark and I married! I would like to say 8 years of wonderful wedded bliss, but anyone who is married knows that marriage, like life, has its many ups and downs. All in All, it seems that the recipe for success in marriage is to try to have more ups than downs. In the last eight years our marriage has been fortified and it is my hope that we will help it to grow stronger as time goes on, this having been said, here are 8 things that I love about being married to Mark:

1. You probably know this, Mark is patient: He has such a wonderful capacity to sit and listen to me for as long as I need it. He is always the last to get upset and almost never raises his voice with our boys.

2. Mark is helpful: I love that Mark was raised to always help around the house (thanks to his Mom) Mark is so good at always taking out the trash, but when he is at home in the evening, he will work by my side putting dishes or laundry away. When Mark helps me around the house, I know he loves me!

3. Mark is a hard worker: In our 8 years of marriage, we have re-finished countless pieces of furniture, re-modeled 3 homes and constructed random projects out of just an idea. Mark works hard to finish our endless projects and always does his best!

4. Mark works to better himself: Mark completed his BA at BYU, and is now working at his Masters. Even though he works 40 hours a week or more, he still makes time to do endless hours of homework and attend classes 1 hour away in the evenings from 6pm till 9pm.

5. Mark loves his boys: Since we have had kids, Mark has shown to be a wonderful father and friend to his boys. He tries to never miss a game or meet and he is always the first to take the boys to the park on Saturday to play ball (I am a little lazy that I don't play ball)

6. Mark is supportive: Ok, yes I do know that sometimes I can be a little crazed and really get into a few hobbies at once. But Mark always supports me in whatever I am interested in at the moment. He is great to encourage me and to sometimes reason me...If I need that.

7. Mark is Faithful: The one thing that has kept our marriage strong and grounded us is our faith. I love that Mark is the first to get dressed for church and he is always helping me to be to church on time. We read our scriptures together and we love to discuss talks we have heard.

8. Mark is a Love Machine....seriously have you seen him...he is sooooooooo cute.....and with age, he has gotten even hotter....I love him!!!

That was my ode to Mark, now here is my ode to you. Thank you for giving us so many places to go. As a couple and now a family, we have found that we love to travel and we love to spend time with family and friends.

Over the last eight years Mark and I have:

1. Gone Camping at Leman Caves with my sister, Nikki, and her husband.

2. Traveled to California to attend my cousin Amy's wedding.

3. Spent a few days in Florida/Disneyworld with my sister, Leslie and her husband.

4. Returned to Del Coronado Island and then went up to Disneyland to visit my friend, Bobbi.

5. Visited Idaho's Sun Valley, and Idaho Falls to see family and friends (Benedicts and Weavers).

6. Flew over to Hawaii to visit Grandma Calabio, Auna and Caluag familys for a family reunion.

7. Driven to Victorville and Yucaipa, California to visit the Kahns and to see Aunt Freda.

8. Road Tripped to Washington to eat cherries, apples, grapes, asparagas and Peaches...and to see the Pughs!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Goal Accomplished: Biathalon!

My friend and I nursing our babies before the run.

My cheering squad.
Finishing the race with jelly legs
Erin Summerill: biathalete!

It seems like with the start of each new year, I am very gung ho on setting goals by talking about them, writing them down and dreaming of finishing them; consequently, most years end with 1/2 or more of my goals having been forgotten and never addressed again. At the end of each year, I feel discouraged with my attitude and preformance of such said goals and I inevitably vow to do better. Listening to my inner voice, I mull over my unaccomplished goals by sheepishly saying, "I gave it a good try." One of my favorite sayings that I use and have since learning it in high school is, "There is no try, you either do it or you dont". And it appears that most years, against the direction of my own advice, I justify my behavior by saying, "I gave it a good try," instead of delivering a blow to my self esteem by admitting, "I did not do it, I did not accomplish my goals."

Since having Theodore, my third son, and witnessing many changes and and the exciting accomplishments of my friends and family, my desire to acctually accomplish my goals has burned brighter. With Divine guidence (a whole lot of prayer) and by daily addressing my goals with my best friend and support (my husband Mark) I have been able to stay focused and continue moving forward in my persuit to accomplish many things.

Yesterday, and (I mean this when I write it) only by the had of God, I accomplished one of my goals for this year!!! I competed in my first BIATHALON! The biathalon was held at Ft. Derussy in Waikiki, HI. The course was a sprint distance and about 600 people of all ages competed. Because I have been running almost every morning, I found that the run was quite easy to finish and I was pleased with myself when I was able to pass about 2/3rds of the women runners. To my dismay, I was not so confidant in the swim portion of the biathalon. In fact, I think the majority of the women runners that I passed in the run, passed me up in the swim. I had not prepared well for the swim and the kind life guards in the water asked me multiple times if I needed assistance. But I persisted and talked myself through the ocean swim and found myself barely able to stand and trudge out of the water to the finish line! My wonderful supporters: Mark, George, Henry and Theodore, sat at the finish line and cheered me on!

To all my friends and family, I cheer you on in whatever goal you are enduring to accomplish! Please share with me any goal you are working on and I will send you a cheer from Hawaii!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Theodore's Limerick!

Playful, rotund and pudgy,
I love toys soft and squdgie.
I squeeze them and coo-
Coating them with drool,
I'm Theodore: cuddly and luvie.

Daddy's sleeping on the bed,
Trying hard to rest his head.
Not letting him sleep,
I'm louder than a peep,
I'm Theodore: waker of the dead!

The sleeper will soon be awake,
To a, it's no mistake.
Yellow buttery goo,
My diaper leaks the ooze,
I'm Theodore: a mess I did make!!!

(Nikki, this one is to be entered in your contest!!!)