When were living in Idaho, and drove by missionaries on the street, we would yell "John Smith is a liar!" out the window. Because we felt like they probably needed some religious persecution in their lives.

Building character.

You know.


So this one time I made soap.

Actually, I have now made soap three times.  Except the second time no actual soap got made.

The first time I made soap, it was a wild success, except for the ugly brown color it turned when I added the mint leaves from my tea bag.  No big deal.  Lesson learned.

The second time I made soap, or rather attempted to make soap, it was at a Relief Society activity, where I was in fact teaching other people to make soap as well.  I felt confident in my ability to teach people because my success rate so far had been 100%.  Indeed, how could I fail?

Well, something went horribly wrong when I added the lye to the water.  I now know that this was due to using an aluminum pot.  We were lucky that I chose to do this step outside, because as it turns out, when lye and aluminum interact, they cause toxic fumes.  And the lye burns holes in the bottom of your aluminum pot.  Or your friend's aluminum pot, as the case may be.  And even if all of this happens outside, if you leave the door to the church open, the fumes might be blown in by the wind, causing the entire group of women who are supposed to be learning the secrets of soap-making at your feet to run for cover.

Upon arriving home (at 11pm due to all the time spent cleaning up the toxic waste I created), I laid in bed for at least two hours unable to sleep while dwelling on that massive failure, and also reading as much as I could on "lye poisoning".  And I slowly convinced myself that I and every other member of the Relief Society need to rush to the emergency room to be treated for our exposure to lye.  Well, about one o'clock in the morning I decide that I need to call poison control.  Yes, I do it from my bed, waking up Paul, and causing him to think I am (even more) crazy.  

"I think I might have lye poisoning," I tell the operator.

"Well, what are your symptoms?" She asks.

"Well, I don't really have any symptoms.  But I was working with lye and aluminum tonight and it created toxic fumes that I was exposed to."


"If you don't have any symptoms, you are probably okay."

"Oh.  Thanks."

Now I know.

The third time I made soap was another wild success, bringing my success rate up to 66%, which is something I think I can feel good about.  And Lindsay was here to help, which made it even more fun.  Actually, that's what made it even doable, because I didn't really want to expose my children to lye, and they follow me around like groupies to a rock star.

So, Garland 3rd Ward Relief Society, if you want some soap, let me know.  I owe you.  And I'm really glad we all didn't die

PS  That is a picture of the actual soap I made.  


Life is good.

In case you didn't know.


Got it.

After weeks of smiling. I finally captured it on camera. The delay was for a couple of reasons. First, it's more fun to engage with a smiling baby than to grab the camera. Second, when I finically decided to start getting out my camera, he would stop smiling and stare at the camera with interest.

Not helpful, Max.

This boy gained exactly one pound between day 5 and day 14 of his life. And then he gained another twenty six ounces between day 14 and day 21.

I guess he's getting enough to eat.

He is now 30 days old. And I can only guess how much he weighs. (As there will not be another doctor's visit for a while.) But I swear I wake up every morning and think he looks bigger.



Last week I was feeling especially sleep deprived. (Shocker.) And I really didn't want to resort to letting my kids watch tv all day. So I packed us a lunch and left the house.

One of the stops for the day was Cabela's. Because its kind of like a free zoo that makes you want to buy hiking equipment.

We went mainly for the zoo element.

But I have been thinking about camping lately (when the weather cools down) so I hit the tent section with the girls after we saw all the (dead) animals.

I had no idea how much two tents would entertain our children. Hello! We played 'house' for at least an hour. Mostly I laid down on the cot and let the girls come 'visit' my house.


We will be going back.



Oh yes she did.

Thanks to Sudie (Paul's mom), we are officially potty trained.


I am not missing diapers one bit. And since Max has now grown enough to fit into his cloth diapers, our diaper bill is about to go WAY down.

More money for high end foods! Right, Paul?


Sometimes he sleeps.

Sometimes he doesn't.

Sometimes it's not his fault.

Is there such a thing as too much love?

But, do you want to know the best part about having a third child?

The fact that this time around, I just don't care what people think about his sleeping habits. I felt really defensive of my girls and their sleeping (which was never stellar during infanthood). I think because it feels like the gauge by which people judge your infant. It is decidedly the question I get most often. "Is he a good sleeper?" or some variation thereof.

With the girls I felt compelled to soften reality. "Oh, she's pretty good." (And by soften reality, I mean lie.)

But, if people judge Max's "goodness" by his sleeping, then so be it. Because this is how it now plays out:
"Oh! He's so sweet! Is he sleeping well?"
"Mmmm, no."

But I'm doing great. And feeling great. In large part because my sweet mother in law made sure I got a nap every day this week. We'll see how I do now that I'm on my own. But I have hope.