Meet The Nat Pack!

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The Nat Pack: The super fashionable, super mod, super hip family consisting of Nat, Pete, Jakob, Brock, Troy, and Ivy. Like The Rat Pack, only younger, cuter, and not as rich or famous.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

More Kissing Cousins

There are some women that have great pregnancies. They feel wonderful, look even better, and get that amazing glow. I am not one of those women. My "glow" is zits and weird blotches on my face. I get swollen legs and my butt gets bigger and bigger. I'm 32 weeks pregnant now, and loathing every minute of it. But at least I'm not alone in my misery. I've always been pregnant at the same time as either my sister or one of my sisters-in-law. With Jakob, it was Kar and Amy. With Brock, it was Kar, Jennifer, Marci, and Melissa. With Troy it was Amy. And now it's with Kar again and Kelly. Only 8 weeks left, though. I'm sure Pete will be relieved when the hormones and the baby leave my body. I will, too.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Rolling Stones

Well, I was wrong when I said "this stone too shall pass". Lucky, lucky Pete is presently in the hospital, and has a very personal date with our urologist tomorrow morning. This morning he woke up in pain at our magic hour of 4:30 (when these warm fuzzy feelings of a stone tearing up your insides decides to always happen) and had to go back to the hospital. Pete saw the doc this afternoon, and he told Pete he'd take the more drastic route of lasering the stone out for him.

Pete told me yesterday that I "stole his kidney stone thunder" by blogging about him. So when he comes home, and detoxes, I'm sure you can get the full story on
his blog. But in the meantime, you at least get an update here on how he's doing. And if he gets mad that I blogged about him again, I can always punch him in the kidney and take away his drugs.

For those of you who have not had stones, take a gander at this picture (yep, that's a kidney stone), realize why these bad boys hurt so much, and thank your lucky stars you haven't had the pleasure of feeling one of these coming down your ureter. If you have had stones, your kidney is probably throbbing with the remembrance of the pain right now. Massage that beautiful organ and tell it it was just a nightmare, and go drink some water!

Sense and Sensibility

My cute sister Brianna put this quiz on her blog, and I decided to be a copycat and do it, too. My result:

You are Elinor Dashwood of Sense & Sensibility! You are practical, circumspect, and discreet. Though you are tremendously sensible and allow your head to rule, you have a deep, emotional side that few people often see.

All possible results: Elinor Dashwood, Marianne Dashwood, Elizabeth Bennet, Fanny Price, Emma Woodhouse, Catherine Morland, Anne Elliot
Take the quiz!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

May You Rest in Peace, Pete

No, the kidney stones didn't do him in. Yes, they're kicking his butt pain-wise. But life goes on, this stone too shall pass, and today Pete turned the BIG 3-0. We had yummy Olive Garden for lunch, then my family came over for cake and ice cream after dinner. Pete got a suit and Electronic Catch Phrase. I worked my fabulous artistic skills and decorated his cake. It's supposed to be a skull and crossbones, FYI.

I decided to use 30 individual candles for a more dramatic effect.

Think the picture of Kar and her family is my camera being blurry? Oh no, my friends. It's the haze from the blown-out candles.


You know, I really think that Easter is one of my favorite holidays. It's a good marker for the beginning of Spring. It celebrates life, and the miracle of the Resurrection. We get to sing awesome songs like "He is Risen!" in church. We get TONS of candy, and usually something else cool in our Easter baskets, like clothes or toys.

This Easter the bunny brought WAY too much candy. We'll be eating it for the next, oh, month probably. She'll need to remember that for next year. We went to church, and wonder of wonders, Troy traipsed right into nursery without a peep and stayed the whole time, so I got to go to my meetings. Then we went to my parents' house, where we had an Easter egg hunt and a way yummy dinner. All in all a fabulous day.

Here's Pete with his manly hunting basket. He helped Troy find eggs.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Pete's "Dragon"

My poor stoned husband.

Stoned as in full of morphine and vicodin, and "stoned" as in....kidney stones.

I woke up this morning at 4:30, and Pete was pacing in our room, and I thought, "Great. Here comes the $1000 morphine trip to the hospital." And no, that's not a typo-they have to do a CT scan and each cute little picture of your insides costs about $500 each. It's lovely.

You may ask how I know so much about this. Besides my own experience to fall back on, this makes Pete's 5th kidney stone. One he passed while lying on the bathroom floor; the others we've had to go to the hospital.

So here's hoping he passes the stone soon. Here's hoping we can see it so the doctor can analyze it and get Pete some meds to help him not form stones any more. (By the way, he has about 6 or 7 more sitting in his kidneys right now.) Here's hoping Pete can slay his dragon. But not Elliott from the movie, because even though the little boy is dang ugly and has 70s hair, I always did like the dragon.

Saturday, March 22, 2008


As you may know by now, Jakob is a huge Spiderman fan and has been for, like, a year I think. He'll get a scratch and tell you it's a spider bite. He'll shoot a web at you if he's upset with you, or if he's trying to defend himself in some way. He pretends to climb on walls, and jumps off of things while shooting or holding a web. He wears his Spiderman costume pretty much every day, sometimes under his clothes just like Peter Parker.
So when my mom got a Spiderman Mr. Potato Head at her house, Jakob begged to go over and play with it. We went over Monday, and when we left that night Jakob asked if he could have a Spiderman Potato Head for his birthday. I said, "Sure, but you know your birthday is 5 months away, right?" Not that he knows what that means, but I think he realized it was a long time. So we decided that instead of listening to him beg and cry for one for the next 5 months, that we would have him earn one by doing chores.
We set him to work with the following: scrub the toilet, make his bed, dust in Mom and Dad's room, pick up toys, put his folded clothes away, say 4 prayers, and help put dishes away. I know, I'm a slave driver. Some of these things he already does, like put away toys and say prayers. But the other stuff he was a first-timer. And I tell you what, he rocked! We have three toilets, and I wanted to show him how to scrub the bowl of his toilet, so I started in a different bathroom. But he wanted to scrub all three, so I totally let him. I was going to fold some laundry and have him just help me put his stuff in his drawers, but he helped me put them in the different piles to take upstairs, and even hung up one of Pete's shirts by himself. That kid was so motivated!

He finished his chores on Wednesday, so that night we went and found his Spider Spud. I have a cleaner house, and he has a new favorite toy. A win-win! I'll have to remember this chore thing! Now if only I can find something to motivate Brock with for potty training...

Frog and Toad

This last Wednesday my awesome mom, the Bammer, took me, Jakob, Karlenn, and Dylan to a play called "Frog and Toad". She got us the book for Christmas, which is a collection of short stories about these two amphibian friends, so I ended up reading them to Jakob and Brock a couple of times through in the months before we went to the play. As we watched the play, Jakob would tell me what was going to happen next because he remembered from the book. It was really cute, and the perfect length for a children's play. The adults all loved a character named Snail the most. But Jakob told me his favorite part was the Terrible Frog; one of the stories tells of this huge frog that was going to eat Frog when he was a boy, but then he escaped. You'd have to read the story. Thanks, Mom, for taking us out on the town!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Vote for the Master

One of the things I wish I could do is dance. I mean, I can go to a place where music is playing and flail my arms around a bit and contort my body to the beat, and I'm okay at Dance Dance Revolution. But I wish I could REALLY dance, where people would want to watch me shake my booty and move my feet in some kind of coordinated manner. Here are a few of my favorite guys showing off their skills. And I'm curious-which one do you feel is the best? I tried figuring out how to post the actual video here, but to no avail. I'm sure it's super easy, but it eluded me, so you'll have to make due with clicking on the links provided.

Justin Timberlake:

Fred Astaire:

Michael Jackson:

Gene Kelly: (he doesn't start dancing until about 2 minutes in)


So...who's the master????

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Q & A 2008

Okay, I got tagged by my cute sister Brianna, so I'm going to fill this out. And you will read it because you love me and think I'm awesome. And I'm going to tag...April, and whoever else wants to fill it out!

1. WHAT TIME DID YOU GET UP THIS MORNING? I woke up a little after 7:30, when Brock came in and said, "Hello?" Then he and Jake crawled into bed with me and let me lay there for a while longer. We got out of bed at 8:00.
2. DIAMONDS OR PEARLS? Diamonds. I actually kind of think that pearls are cheesy, except the non-cultured ones.
3. WHAT WAS THE LAST FILM YOU SAW AT THE CINEMA? Definitely Maybe. It was...okay. It could have been better, I think, but it was a cute idea.
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TV SHOW? Medium right now. Pete and I download shows mostly by season and watch a few episodes in a row a few nights a week until we run out. We've done this to Numb3rs, Bones, Grey's Anatomy, etc.
5. WHAT DO YOU USUALLY HAVE FOR BREAKFAST? Some kind of cereal and either juice or a Propel.
7. WHAT FOOD DO YOU DISLIKE? Fish, mushrooms, tomatoes, olives, pineapple.
8. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CD.? I love my "Forever Plaid" CD, even though I haven't listened to it in a long time.
9. WHAT KIND OF CAR DO YOU DRIVE? A Chevy Venture, unless I'm alone and not getting groceries, then it's my Dodge Neon (Tuna).
10. FAVORITE SANDWICH? Ham and Swiss. I like a few kinds at Quizno's Subs. And Mrs. Powell's. And Subway. And Great Harvest. And Old Grist Mill. And Einstein's Bagels. I love sandwiches.
14. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR BATHROOM? The master is purple and white with butterflies, the boy bathroom is yellow and blue with duckies, the downstairs bathroom is green and blue with dragonflies.
15. FAVORITE BRAND OF CLOTHING? I like Old Navy shirts a lot, and Gap jeans.
16. WHERE WOULD YOU RETIRE TO? Somewhere warm, which hopefully will be near my kids. Or I'll just be so rich I can fly to see them a lot. :)
17. WHAT WAS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE BIRTHDAY? I have a summer birthday, so I've always been doing cool things on my birthday. 4 times I was at EFY, once we were traveling to CA, once in Seattle, last year my high school reunion was on my birthday, etc.
18. WHO DO YOU LEAST EXPECT TO DO THIS ON THEIR BLOG? Kar, because she just did something similar to this.
19. FAVORITE SAYING? "Dude". Pete and I both use "Dude" a lot. I even call the kids "dude".
21. ARE YOU A MORNING OR NIGHT PERSON? Night, though I no longer have my super stay-up-late powers like I did in college.
23. PETS? None, and it will probably stay that way. I like animals, but I don't want the hassle.
24. ANY NEW AND EXCITING NEWS YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH US? I'm going to start potty training Brock this Thursday. Wish me luck!
25. WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU WERE LITTLE? A teacher, or a professional pianist.
26. WHAT ARE YOU TODAY? A Supermom.
27. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CANDY? Anything chocolate! I've raided my Easter candy and eaten most of the Cadbury Creme Eggs, so yesterday I had to replenish the supply. And I love Sweetarts, and Gobstoppers.
28. YOUR FAVORITE FLOWER? Lilacs, irises, tulips.
29. WHAT IS A DAY ON THE CALENDAR YOU ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO? My due date-May 22! It's not coming fast enough!
30. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Toy Story, and my kids reciting along.
31. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? Shredded wheat and cranberry juice.
32. DO YOU WISH ON STARS? Sometimes.
33. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE? Burnt Sienna! Just because it's randomly named.
34. HOW IS THE WEATHER RIGHT NOW? Cold and windy.
35. FAVORITE SOFT DRINK? Coca-Cola. It's truly the nectar of the gods.
36. FAVORITE RESTAURANT? Benihana, Olive Garden, Chilis.
37. SIBLINGS? Three cute sisters. One older, two younger.
38. FAVORITE DAY OF THE YEAR? My birthday.
39. WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE TOY AS A CHILD? I had this little monkey named Gonga, which I actually had up until a few months ago, when his plastic feet broke and all the little beads fell out.
40. SUMMER OR WINTER? Summer. It's so nice to be able to get out and do stuff outdoors.
41. HUGS OR KISSES? Hugs. I can never get enough, much to Pete's chagrin.
42. CHOCOLATE OR VANILLA? Chocolate all the way.
43. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? Last night. Gotta love hormones.
44. WHAT IS UNDER YOUR BED? Nothing. I'm a true minimalist.
46. WHAT DID YOU DO LAST NIGHT? We went for a drive after dinner, and ended up at my mom's house. My sister Lex is up for Spring Break, and we watched "Dancing with the Stars" with her and my mom.
47. FAVORITE SMELL? New plastic, lilacs, my current shampoo (Aussie brand).
48. WHAT ARE YOU AFRAID OF? I always worry that my kids will get run over.
49. SALTY OR SWEET? Sweet.
51. HOW MANY YEARS AT YOUR CURRENT JOB? I've been a mom for 4 1/2 years.
52. FAVORITE DAY OF THE WEEK? I like Fridays-Pete's usually at home. It's just a good day.
54. DO YOU MAKE FRIENDS EASILY? Not really. I've gotten really shy since getting married.
56. HOW MANY WILL COMMENT? Maybe 2-ish.

Monday, March 17, 2008

You See, I See (Or, Pregnancy ROCKS!)

You see: a turtle on its back
I see: me trying to get out of bed, off the floor, etc.

You see: stairs
I see: Mt. Everest

You see: socks and shoes
I see: a 10-minute workout

You see: a comfy bed
I see: a night of restless legs, bathroom trips, and tossing and turning

You see: a fridge full of endless possibilities
I see: several things that make me gag

You see: chocolate
I see: comfort

You see: my feet
I don’t.


I think I have a never ending "to do" list. My sister and I were talking about how we have the top priority things, like feeding and changing the kids, doing laundry, and doing dishes. If we're lucky, we get to the other stuff, like cleaning bathrooms, dusting, vacuuming. But then there's the OTHER stuff for me. Like changing my burnt-out light bulbs outside by my garage. Or adding the latest charms on my charm bracelet. Or replacing the deadbolt on my front door. Cleaning the crayon off my walls. Fixing the dents in the walls that my kids have made. Throwing out useless boxes in my storage room. Converting my senior class VHS tape to a DVD. Checking to see if Jakob is on our dental insurance. Moving the empty shelves in my garage into my basement. And the list goes on and on. You know, the stuff that needs to get done someday, but it...just doesn't. I end up thinking about the items on this list randomly. Like the charms for my bracelet-I think about it when I'm grabbing my watch and wedding ring in a hurry in the morning and I see my bracelet sitting in my jewelry box. Or the crayon on the wall gets noticed when I'm going up or down my stairs and I think "I really need to clean that off", but it never gets done.
So, am I the only person who is like this? Who else has an Undone List, and what's on it?

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Yesterday Brock turned three years old. Like Pete said, it's weird to think that he's already that age. My babies are growing up! *sniff* I love that Brock still has his chubby cheeks, so he has dimples when he smiles. I SO hope he keeps those dimples even after his chubby cheeks disappear!
Our Superman got two Superman toys (how fitting!), a Batman toy, some clothes, a book and a movie, a jet, and a race car, not to mention a Toy Story cake. Thanks, Grandma and Grandpa H, Kar and Ben, and Grandma and Grandpa P!
Our Superman




Kar and Ben (nice eyes, Ben!)

Worried Brock ("Give me my new toys back!")

Mom, Sadie, and Dylan


Kar also posted about coming over; if you want to peruse more pics then head that way!


My beautiful 1998 Dodge Neon just passed 100,000 miles. I would have gotten a picture right at the mark, but it was busy doing its duty of taking Pete to work at 5:30 a.m. It's been a wonderful car. My sisters dubbed it "Tuna" because of the cool color. I think it's technically called "platinum metallic", but it tends to look like different colors depending on the light it's in. Is it beige? silver? gray? gold? Fabulous! I wanted a cuter name for it, but Tuna stuck from the get-go, and Tuna it will stay. I know it's filthy dirty-my pregnancy nesting hasn't reached the garage or its occupants yet. I love my Tuna, and hope it lasts another 100,000!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

North Carolina, Come On and Raise Up!

One of the reasons we went to see Pete's family this weekend, besides the fact we haven't seen them since Thanksgiving, was because my sister-in-law Suzy just got back from her LDS mission in North Carolina. Besides the picture trauma that I posted about (which really, we've been through much, much worse), we had tons of fun. On the way down we ate at Benihana with my brother-in-law Richard. Benihana, I will love you forever. You make me, pregnant or not, very happy. Suzy spoke in church on Sunday, and her talk was wonderful. Well, what I heard of it-we were doing the kid thing like always, meaning this one needs a drink, that one needs a diaper change, this one wants fruit snacks, that one has sticky chocolate hands from a granola bar, etc.

Saturday Grandma and Grandpa P had an Easter egg hunt in their backyard. The kids had a blast.

Kelly and I had a chance to take a "kissing cousins" photo, as did our husbands Mark and Pete.

We even found time to exercise! It was a fabulous weekend out of the snow.

Worth a Thousand Words

Family pictures. Definitely one of the banes of my existence. We went to see Pete's side of the family this weekend, and since it's one of the few times that we are ALL together, we got new family pictures. This now includes 30 people, with two more coming in the next two or so months. The last time Pete's family did a big group photo like this, I was two months pregnant. The last time my side of the family did it, I was 9 months pregnant. And this time I was 6 1/2 months along. Needless to say, the timing on these things is not in my favor.

But what's even better, besides the fact that my belly is huge, my legs are starting to swell, and I'm at least 15 pounds heavier than usual, is how my kids are with professional pictures. My children are complete hams at home. But we get to a studio and it's as if we're about to boil them alive. "Come here and stand by me and smile" might as well be "Come here while I pull every hair out of your head individually". Super fun.

They wanted a picture of Grandma and Grandpa P and all the grandchildren-14 of 'em. All the other kids run up with their smiles. We have to drag my children up, who are now screaming and crying. I have to sit in the picture with a black velvet blanket over my legs and head so that I can sit by them and hold Troy on my lap. The sad thing is I've done the "cover Mom up" thing before. So in that picture Troy looks like we pulled a Harry Potter and performed "Wingardium Leviosa" on him-he's kind of floating by himself on the side of the picture.

The whole family picture went a little bit better. For one, my children's heads are in front of my belly so you can't tell I'm pregnant all that much. And pictures don't have sound, so all you see is a worried look on Brock's face, Jakob licking his snot with his tongue, and Troy clinging to Pete. And I'm kind of grimacing, thinking "WHY is this something that's so hard for my kids/Oh yeah, I'm in this picture too, I'd better pretend to be worry-free".

I'd show you said pictures, but right now our CD drives aren't working. Once they do, I'll add the pictures to this post. But for now you can just imagine, and be glad it's not your kids. But at least we're done for quite some time...oh wait, Brock needs his 3-year-old pictures taken soon. Let the fun begin again!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Entertainers

I've mentioned before that my children are VERY self-entertaining. And I love it. They always surprise me with their creativity and imaginations. Here are a few samples:

Here's Jakob being a robot, with his robot he made by his feet:

My superheroes-Brock as Superman, Jakob as Spiderman, and our Elmo toy they dressed up to also be Spidey:

Here's proof that I actually DO play with my kids, though-Hungry Hippos: