Monday, June 20, 2011

Picture yourself in Hawaii

Here are a few pics of our trip to Hawaii.

It was glorious.

See for yourself...

Ahhh...Hawaii from the bottom of my aching throat..I miss you.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Post-Surgery thoughts..

Yesterday I had my surgery.  Here are the few things I remember before my operation..

-Bob Marley playing on the radio in the car while Andrew reassured me that I wouldn't die.

-We watched the E! True Hollywood Story about Star Jones and I got to learn all about when she became a diva and how she became a tyrant and so unlikeable on "Celebrity Apprentice."  This was while waiting for the surgeon to arrive.  I learned a lot.

-The nurses made me drink this awful biocarbonate stuff that was so bitter, but somehow had the remarkable after taste of SweetTarts.  This was so the acid wouldn't cause complications during the surgery.

-My surgeon wears the tightest scrubs I've ever seen.  Like skin-tight.  We hoped it was just a fluke the first time we met with him, but nope..that's how he rolls.  

-I have the sweetest, most kind husband on the planet.  He thinks I'm hot in a hospital gown and that's really saying something.

So the surgery went well.  I now have seven incisions on my tummy and each one hurts a lot, but mostly the top one because it's very bruised from where they put the microscope. Ow.  Oh and the hospital was kind enough to give us a gift basket when the blinds fell off the window last night.  We didn't mention it was kind of Andrew's fault that it happened...are we bad people?

I've been living on a healthy diet of water, chicken broth, cable tv, and morphine.

But right now the morphine has worn off. I am back home, and my whole body hurts from my head to my toes.  Andrew should be back any minute to drug me up so I can go back to sleep for the rest of the day.

On a happy note, my sister is here!
Andrew's sis is here too and they've been helping hold down the fort and watch Ellie since I won't be able to lift her or anything over 2 pounds for the next month. LOVE them. 

Would you believe that it hurts to drink water right now? 

Friday, June 10, 2011

Berry Citrus Cake with Toasted Coconut

I am in LOVE with this cake.
It might not really even be a cake.

It's like a meringue dream of pillow-y splendidness.

It's fabulous warm.

But delicious cold.

And it basically makes all your sugarless dreams come true.

Wait a second. 

We all know that any dessert without real sugar isn't actually worth making right? 

This is a myth.  And for those of you who have tried to attempt the sugar-free realm before and NO MORE!

Don't be intimidated by the ingredients..seriously you can find the Stevia and Whole Wheat Pastry flour at Sunflower Market which in my opinion is significantly cheaper than Whole Foods.

And if you wanted incredible mexican food would you settle for the likes of Taco Bell? would find something much more authentic I'm sure.  So it's the same concept..sugarfree CAN be delicious if it's done right. 

Adapted from Stevia Sweet Recipes by Jeffrey Goettemoeller

Berry Citrus Cake with Toasted Coconut               Serves 6

5 T. whole wheat pastry flour or barley flour
1 t. stevia powder (approx. 3 packets)
1/8 t. salt
1 cup vanilla yogurt
1/4 t.  lemon peel
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 T. vegetable oil
1/4 cup coconut (not toasted)
2 egg yolks
3 egg whites at room temperature
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen berries ( I used raspberries and marionberries)
1 cup toasted coconut

1. In a medium bowl stir flour, stevia, and salt together.
2. In a separate bowl mix yogurt, lemon peel, lemon juice, oil, untoasted coconut, and egg yolks together. 
3. Combine both mixtures.
4. Beat egg whites in KitchenAid (or use hand mixer) on medium high until stiff peaks form. This step is CRUCIAL to the cake turning out right.
5. Fold in cake batter.  NOT stir or mix..FOLD.
6. Next fold in the berries of your choice. 
7. Turn into a lightly greased 8 in. dish.
8. Bake 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
9. Lower heat and then bake at 325 degrees for another 15 minutes.  I used the last 3-5 minutes of this to toast my coconut.
10. Remove from oven..sprinkle toasted coconut on top.  Serve warm, cold, or however you please.

Disclaimer:  The author of this blog excuses herself from any effects that may be caused by this cake.  Effects include but are not limited to the following: Becoming REALLY popular in church when you take this to the next ward picnic, kids offering to ditch their bff's b-day party so they can clean the garage in exchange for a whole cake to keep for themselves, younger looking skin, and last but not least, those skinny jeans finally make you look SKINNY,etc...

Best of luck to you, dear friends.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

In the name of love

Tonight we reminisced a bit. 

About the good ol' days when we dated and never slept and laughed a lot because we were so tired.

And then we remembered when my husband to be (at the time) used all his savings to buy a jeep so he could come see me everyday of his life. 

Because he used all of his savings to purchase the Jeep...a job was in order.

So he could buy me a fancy ring and we could get married.

But I learned something new tonight.

The only job he could find that would work with his school (pronounced SH-ool in our house) was at the BYU Creamery factory.  There may be a fancier name for the place, but if there is..I don't know it.


We talked and laughed about how he would call me feeling sick because he ate too many exotic cheeses that day. 

Or too much bread.

He hates seeing food go to waste so when they gave out free stuff he took full advantage.

But really, who wants to slice cheese for minimum wage for the rest of their life?

He then confessed that that was actually the high roller job in the joint.

Apparently, one day, when there wasn't much to do in the cheese department, they sent him to work in the fridge area.

And there he chopped onions for hours.

And cried and cried.

But only because it was an onion..he wasn't sad.  And he wasn't alone.  There were many other onion choppers there..wiping away tears with each draw of the knife.

He said the worst part was how cold it was in there.

Like a fridge.  But colder.

And he had to wear a coat with a hoodie underneath just to stay warm while he cried.

He explained he never told me that story of the onions so I wouldn't feel sorry for him.  And that he knew he'd never get anywhere there..because his boss only saw him as another guy to chop onions.

Unfortunately, it's a job without much appreciation.

So I told him that I appreciated it...even though I didn't know.

He said he did it all for love and would do it again in a heartbeat.

And then I smooched him.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Trauma in the Surgical Unit..

Remember this?

That's right, folks.  It's the Pit of Despair.

Did Wesley really deserve this?

I mean really?

I went through something similar this morning.

Wesley, I know how you feel man. 

And I give you props for somehow coming back to life and winning your true love back.  I now appreciate what that actually required of you.  Kudos.


1. A deeply distressing or disturbing experience.

  2. Emotional shock following a stressful event or a physical injury, which may be associated with physical shock and sometimes leads to long-term neurosis.

A few years ago I was diagnosed with something called Barrett's Esophagus.  Don't ask me why it's called that...I have no clue.  But I sure hate that Barrett guy.


After multiple tests and doctors followed by more tests and doctors,  they have finally decided I need surgery.  Like big deal surgery.  The kind where I can't drive for at least 2 weeks, can only consume liquids for at least 6 weeks, and that is likely to cause me to use every british swear word I know.  Because we all know british swearing sounds more sophisticated than regular swearing AND I honestly do not even know what those words mean so I obviously cannot be held accountable.

Before said surgery, to ensure that my esophagus works properly, I had to do ONE more test..a Motility test.  I'm not sure who thought this test was a good idea or really how it ever was accepted in the medical field.  Surely some terrorists somewhere are performing it as a torture method right now.

 So today I stroll casually into the same day surgery, not knowing what to expect.  I had a vague idea of what was to come since my Doc decided to skip over a real explanation of the procedure.

That should  have indicated "Warning..Danger ahead" to my unsuspecting brain.  


So the nurse takes a tube. A very long, half the size of a pixie stix tube that has an pointy arrow contraption at the end of it.  The tube is marked with numbers by the centimeter.  

I hate centimeters.  

After the nurse and her accomplice explain to me that FEW people are able to actually follow through with this test, I decide to man up and go for it.  It can't be THAT bad, right?

Oh yes. It can.

 That tube was put through my nose all the way into my stomach. And I felt every second of it.  Actually, they only got halfway through the first time because I was gagging and coughing so much.  I'm completely positive that objects are NOT supposed to go through your nose.  It hurts.  It stings.  Your eyes water.  You wish you had your favorite teddy bear to snuggle with because surely this must be a nightmare.

But it was very real.   

The second attempt I drank sips of water to help the tube go down faster.  And then they leave you.  Alone. For like forever.  

Apparently this is so your body stops freaking out and "gets used" to the good for nothing tube.

Torture methods have been used for centuries.  And I'm telling you...this one, is brilliant.  Sayid from LOST would've been proud.

When the nurse and her buddy return, they've got a friend with them.  She looks nice enough.  Until she begins pulling the tube from my nose. One small, small centimeter at a time.  

 78.  That was the starting number.  I just laid there staring at the blinking red light on the smoke detector and listened to the "flight of the bumblebee" which somehow seemed quite appropriate.  Thanks Pandora.

This continues one centimeter per minute.  

Until you hit 40.

40 is the number where they stop taking the tube out of your nose and make you drink water that the terrorist, uh excuse me..nurse, syringes into your mouth.  This goes on for 10 minutes. 

Then the pulling continues until 25 where you proceed to drink some more water.

By now, the tube has been pulled so far back up my throat that I'm gagging and coughing and the nurse is telling me calmly to "try not to swallow" because it's disrupting her testing.  

And then I punched her.

Ok I wish I had punched her. 

Once the tube was completely yanked from my stomach, esophagus, throat, and finally nose I drove myself home.  And cried all the way.

Maybe I should've checked the other rooms on my way out to see if there were any other victims that needed to be rescued.  Maybe I should've requested to see Al Quaida since surely a few members were hanging out in a cozy office somewhere in the hospital, barking orders to obedient nurses to inflict terror and pain into each patient.

But really I just wanted to get the heck out of there.


Friday, June 3, 2011

The truth of the matter..

I realized today that I have a habit of starting things.

Seriously..I am SO good at this.

I start movies.

And projects around my house.

And dinner...

The only real problem with any of this is that I am REALLY bad at finishing these things that I start.

And the second problem to this habit is that instead of finishing one project, I just start another.

I might have A.D.D

For example..

It only took me 30 seconds to count 6 things I have started in the last 24 hours that I now do NOT want to finish.

So instead of getting down to business in the last 30 minutes,  I have been..

Reading this

Falling in l-o-v-e

Wishing I could really have just ONE teensy, tiny  bite of this...

And pondering how I can make our new budget disappear. 

This is the bazillionth time we've made a new budget..

I hate budgets.



I like money and I like to know it's there when I need's all that structure that gets me down.

You how this morning I literally watched my husband subtract money from my spending amount for the month of June.

Stupid excel spreadsheet. 

Stupid Itunes for taking my $1.00 just so I could listen this gem anytime I want.


I should probably go do something.


Happy Ending

Today there was a lot to do. 

Like paint polka dots. 

And clean pencil markings off the chair that has been newly refurbished.

And watch a movie (edited) about a guy who cuts his own arm off. 


That last one stressed me out for what felt like 127 hours.

Because the days events were a tad know, the polka dots can start playing tricks on your mind after awhile, I decided I should give myself a break.

The kind I like to call "Costa Vida".

Ellie was a doll the entire time.

Luckily, to my great fortune, a handsome man came through my front door, cleaned my dirty kitchen, and kissed me hello.  One might say he helped me end a stressful, polka-dotted day on a happy note.   

This guy is also quite charming.  But he's only 4 1/2 months old so sorry will have to wait awhile.

Baby Hughy..we all love him so.

And that handsome man?

Well I love him too.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Trees and things

Last night..around 10pm..I decided it was the perfect time to paint the tree mural on Ellie's wall.

Not the most brilliant idea I've had lately.

It started out fine.  I was making progress and I thought, "this is a cinch..I'll be done in no time."

To reach some of the more difficult angles of the tree I started using my left hand to paint.  This is a skill I possess since I am right handed.  I used to be proud of this skill.

While I focused on carefully tracing the lines of my tree I felt something cold land on my foot.

My right hand had rebelled in anger and I had accidently tipped the container enough so that most of the paint was now down my shirt, shorts, and all over my legs. 


This was after I spilled black paint on my now white piano and sprayed the ceiling with chalkboard spray paint instead of the wall.

And to tell the truth, post-paint, all I really cared about was finding out why Locke's dad is on the island in "Lost".  Stupid cliffhangers at the end of every good episode. We're in the middle of season 3 and Andrew wanted to watch a movie so I was left in suspense. 

Does Locke's dad finally say sorry after conning Locke into giving him one of his kidneys?

How is Jack supposed to leave the island now that Locke blew up the submarine?

Will Charlie ever stop being annoying or get over his drug addiction?

If you need me I will be here..deciding what color to paint my living room and who I can pay to sew me some pillows.