Thursday, July 31, 2008

Friends & family

Angela made friends with the most disgusting, horrifying creatures I've ever seen in my life: two hornworms.

Elizabeth has this sign hanging on her bedroom door; it makes me feel like part of an exclusive club:

Our sweet little girl woke up at 5 am this morning. Two hours later she fell asleep on the couch while eating a piece of toast:

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Happy Pioneer Day!

It's Pioneer Day! For me all that means is an extra 4th of July, since there are celebrations and fireworks in the evening. It's a big plus, living in Utah.

This morning we got up early to head to the church for breakfast, bike riding, and games.

The girls had spent much of the afternoon of the day before, decorating their bikes. They were quite proud of their work. Each bike had crowns, flowers, and lots of pink ribbons.

Riding down the street:

Eating breakfast:

Elizabeth stopped to help Angela fix a flower that had fallen off her bike. Every decoration was held in its place with tape, and it sometimes didn't work too well:

Playing games! All kids five years old and under had a race. Angela would start running as soon as she heard "...Set..." and it gave her some advantage.

Lovely Elizabeth:

Two beautiful girls:

None of the pictures I took caught this, but the kids had a hopping race. Elizabeth and Angela held hands the entire time. This picture was taken during the break between laps. They didn't let go...

...because they love each other!

Elizabeth and her friend Kirsten getting ready for the three-legged race:

They didn't win for speed, but they certainly had the highest level of caution:

There are many pictures I didn't include. They're in the album below.
Pioneer Day

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Do Your Part

Our local DMV recently moved from a convenient downtown location to much further away, close to the prison area. A friend of mine talked about wanting to carpool to the DMV because fuel prices are so high. Carpooling makes sense. And she won't be riding with Hitler.

I don't know what it was like to live in this country in the 1940's when propaganda was rampant; I don't know if the
people entirely believed and acted on the calls for support and conservation. Did they request their change from the grocery store in war bonds? Did they all plant victory gardens? How extensively was car-sharing implemented?

Whatever the social agreement was, it is certainly different now. We are a nation of cynics and skeptics, but we're complacent, too. Even now, when the cost of oil is legitimately high (though financially painful), what are we doing about it? Rather than band together and work through it, how are we coping with it? We are grumbling and paying for it without making any changes. It's business as usual in America.

That may not be completely accurate. The expense has forced some adjustment in most cases.

But guidance and support from the government? Nope. You can like it or you can lump it.

Car-sharing clubs? None. We're all on our own.

Many who have made significant changes in their lives because of the unbelievable cost of fuel. I know several people who will not drive unless they absolutely must, who have changed their frequented grocery stores to ones with closer locations, cut back on their food budgets, and some who have started walking to places where they would normally drive.

With that in mind, it's time to start planning my next vacation...

For never having experienced 2008 before, it sure looks familiar.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I stole this 'tag'

I stole this from Jenny Rosengren. I hope she doesn't mind.

Angela's responses:

1.What is something mom always says to you? Don't push the buttons that are in my bathroom.

2. What makes mom happy? Obeying her.

3. What makes mom sad? Throwing a fit.

4. How does mom make you laugh? Doing funny things.

5. What was mom like as a child? Kids.

6. How old is your mom? I don't know.

7. How tall is your mom? Bigger than me and taller than me.

8. What is your mom's favorite thing to do? Wrestle.

9. What does your mom do when you’re not around? Um -- do the dishes.

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? I don't know.

11. What is your mom really good at? A lot of stuff.

12. What is your mom not very good at? Not kids' stuff.

13. What does your mom do for a job? A lot of things.

14. What is your mom's favorite food? I don't know.

15. What makes you proud of your mom? Telling me to do the laundry.

16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would it be? I don't know.

17. What do you and your mom do together? Family!

18. How are you and your mom alike? We have blue eyes and the same skin.

19. How are you and your mom different? Not having the same hair.

20. How do you know your mom loves you? Taking her flowers.

Elizabeth's responses:

1.What is something mom always says to you? Clean up my room.

2. What makes mom happy? Playing.

3. What makes mom sad? Not cleaning up our room.

4. How does mom make you laugh? Lots of things.

5. What was mom like as a child? A kid.

6. How old is your mom? 31.

7. How tall is your mom? I don't know.

8. What is your mom's favorite thing to do? Playing with us.

9. What does your mom do when you’re not around? Work.

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? I don't know.

11. What is your mom really good at? Making her bed.

12. What is your mom not very good at? Being a kid.

13. What does your mom do for a job? I don't know.

14. What is your mom's favorite food? Apple Jacks!

15. What makes you proud of your mom? Playing Candy Land.

16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would it be? Elina.

17. What do you and your mom do together? Wrestle.

18. How are you and your mom alike? We have the same skin.

19. How are you and your mom different? Have different eyes.

20. How do you know your mom loves you? Showing your love.


1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you. If you don't want to play on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, I'll leave my memory of you in my comments.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The best and worst parts of motherhood

Here are some things I wouldn't mind never hearing again:

"Come see my poop!"

"I don't like your dinner."

"Do we have to?"

"You're not my best friend!"

(From the kitchen) "Waterfall!"

"I wanted to win!"

But there are good things too, and I can't hear these often enough:

"I love my toys, and I love my books, but I love my family the best."

"You're my sister, and my best friend."

"I need snuggles and loves!"

"Good night. Sleep well. See you in the morning. I love you!"

"I'm thankful for my family."

"I want to hug and kiss you!"

Friday, July 18, 2008

Family portraits

These are already on the new Johnson/Brown blog, but I had to put them here too.

Our newest family portrait:

And a long-lost wedding picture:

Who drew these? Hint: the girl with the most detail in the drawing of the whole family is the artist herself.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Such a long time

Too long since I've updated!

I have so many pictures to share that I'm including a link to the web album, instead of posting all 60 pictures here. I couldn't narrow it down.

Kids outside

These pictures are from the last week, of the kids playing at the park and other places. Enjoy!

NEWS: Elizabeth's top front left tooth is loose.

Dinnertime conversation last night, as Angela refused to stay in her seat or loosen her fingers from my neck, all the while yelling "You're not listening to me!":

Me: Are you attention-starved?
Angela: Uh-UH!
Me: You're not? Then how do you act when you are?
Angela: I'm nice. And bad.

This morning:

Angela: I have a haddock!
Me: Oh, no! Where is your headache, honey? Where does it hurt?
Angela: On my forehead and on my head that has hair.
Elizabeth: That's the same head, Angela.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


8 Things I am Passionate About:

  1. My children
  2. My husband
  3. Childbirth
  4. Reading
  5. My religion
  6. Music
  7. Nature
  8. Word games

8 Songs I Could Listen to Over and Over Again and Never Get Sick of:

  1. Constellations ~ Jack Johnson
  2. Santa Monica ~ Everclear
  3. Blackbird ~ anyone, though my dad's version is my favorite
  4. The Spangle-Maker ~ Cocteau Twins
  5. Better People ~ Xavier Rudd
  6. 1/1 ~ Music for Airports, Brian Eno
  7. When You See a Hot Dog Flower ~ Angela Johnson
  8. Follow The Prophet ~ Elizabeth Johnson

The Past 8 Books I Have Read:

  1. The Wide Window
  2. The Magician's Nephew
  3. A Passage to India
  4. Nights of Rain and Stars
  5. The Host
  6. Book of a Thousand Days
  7. The Omnivore's Dilemma
  8. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

8 Things I Say Often:

  1. "Does that make sense?"
  2. "Time for a time out!"
  3. "No," usually in response to a question that begins "Do you remember...?"
  4. "Too many cooks make light work!"
  5. "For crying out loud!!"
  6. "What shall we hang, the holly or ourselves?"
  7. "When it rains, it snows."
  8. "I love you too."

8 Things That Attract Me to a Friend:

  1. Honesty
  2. Wittiness
  3. Haiku and limerick ability
  4. Intellectual capacity
  5. Level of culture
  6. Openness
  7. Understanding of and appreciation for grammar
  8. A belief in mysticism, even if it is very slight

8 Random Things About Me:

  1. I don't mind cleaning toilets, but doing the dishes drives me absolutely crazy.
  2. My favorite parts of the natural world are waterfalls. My next favorite are forests.
  3. I would appreciate a taco at 2 am more than just about any other thing I can think of. But I don't think my love language is food.
  4. I'm frustrated by my utter inability to find someone -- anyone -- with similar tastes in music, film, and literature. Really, people. I know I'm not the weird one here.
  5. My favorite word right now is "liturgy," but I have no occasion to use it.
  6. I very rarely dream at night anymore. I haven't since my children are born. I'm kind of worried about that.
  7. I'm still proud of that time we played Boggle, and I was doing so well that we made a rule that I could only put down five-letter words, and I still did great. That was fun, but now no one wants to play Boggle with me.
  8. I dilute my chocolate ice cream with milk and mash it into a kind of thick milkshake in my bowl. I love chocolate ice cream, but I can't eat it any other way.

8 Things I Want to Do Before I Die:

  1. Be in an ensemble for a musical. No starring roles, just onstage, singing with the company.
  2. Go to Italy.
  3. Hear Dr. Michel Odent speak in person.
  4. Get a Masters degree.
  5. See a bald eagle and a male kestrel in the wild.
  6. Hike The Subway or The Narrows and the Havasupai trail.
  7. Attend a doula conference.
  8. Tune my cello without fear.

8 Things I Have Learned This Past Year:

  1. If you aren't honest with yourself, you cannot be honest with anyone about anything.
  2. I can successfully plan and pull off a huge conference event! But I don't want to do it ever again!
  3. I am a pretty good doula.
  4. My gut instinct/intuition is usually correct.
  5. I am unusual in ways I never before suspected. I experience the world in a way that is largely unique. Most people don't have the same perspective or connections I have. I never imagined this was so.
  6. The key to survival is not doing everything yourself: it's delegation.
  7. Very small things, when kept bottled up, can become painful at best and insurmountable at worst.
  8. You can't ever assume that you know what someone else is thinking or feeling. Always ask.

People I Tag:

I'd love to read your responses. If you'd like to do this fun exercise in exposure and self-indulgence, please do! Just let me know in my comments so I can read your answers.