Saturday, February 28, 2009

I heart...

...that I have 29 comments on my last post. :) I know it's stupid, but WE ALL get excited when we get comments! Just admit it.

So I dare you to try to make it up to 29 on this post!! Make it a double dare!! No...TRIPLE DOG DARE!!

P.S. Jason is still in pain, but doing pretty well. Long recovery ahead. We're just enjoying hanging out while we can. :)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Too Close for Comfort

This morning at 7 am I got a call from Jason. (He goes to work at 4 am). He starts his call with, "Don't freak out, but..." So, of course, I start freak out. What did he expect?

Jason works in Rock Springs, about 15-20 minutes from Green River. He carpools with a neighbor of ours (they're on the same crew in the same department at work, and therefore, have the same schedules; it's really convenient since we only have one car). When they arrive at work they drive trucks carrying their equipment out to the job site and set up.

The company has been cutting back. They let all of their temps go. Then they cleaned house in the office, letting all of their higher paid staff go. Recently they let go the "rotators" (they live in other states and the company pays for them to travel here, work their 2 week rotation, and then again pays for them to go home for their week off to see their families). No worries, we're pretty confidant in the security of Jason's job! Anyway, because of these lay offs, they rearranged crews and schedules.

More explanation: Jason works crazy hours (about 17 a day) for two straight weeks and then gets a full week off paid. The two weeks he works are really draining on us all. He is completely worn out and sleep deprived by the end. I'm tired of dealing with the kids and everything on my own. And we all just miss each other like crazy. But that week off is WONDERFUL! We get to spend every second together and it's so much fun!!

So Jason's crew has already worked one week in their rotation so far. That meant he would work again this week and then next week he'd be off. We were planning a trip to Utah. Yesterday we found out that he was being moved to another crew. Red crew.

Red crew had their week off this last week. That meant that Jason was going to be expected to work the next two weeks with them in joining their rotation. That meant 3 straight weeks for him. He's gone before I'm up in the morning and home at night just before bed, if I'm even still awake. I was not happy about not being able to see him all of next week. Besides, this was messing up out plans to go to Utah!

I kept telling myself to think of the extra money it would bring in and that it was just one extra week. I could get through just one extra week. But I wasn't happy.

Then my phone rang at 7 this morning. There had been an accident. Jason was in an ambulance. On their way out to the job site in a work van a car had swerved on the two lane highway and hit the van carrying my husband head on. The driver of that car was killed.

Killed. Someone actually died. Life was taken. That fact alone made this news hard for me to swallow. Jason was alive. He thought he had a broken collar bone. He thought everyone in the van was okay.

He had to go. They were taking him to the hospital to be checked out. I hung up the phone and immediately, without a thought, dropped to my knees. Thank you, Lord! Thank you that my husband is alive! Thank you that it's someone else's family who will suffer this tragedy today!

Then I called my family. I explained what had happened to my mom. I cried to her. Guilt because of my prayer had set in. My mom expressed her love and concern for Jason and comforted me the way any perfect mom would.

I called my dad. That was a "funny" conversation. When I had explained the situation to my mom I had prefaced the news with, "Jason's okay, but..." I had (unintentionally) failed to add this to the story when I told my dad. "There was an accident. A car hit Jason's work truck head on. It was the other driver's fault. He was killed..." This was followed by my dad yelling. "What?! Jason's dead?!" Oops. Didn't mean to give you a heart attack, Dad. :) I quickly clarified that Jason was okay, it was the other driver who was killed. I was reprimanded and then we laughed off the tension. Dad expressed his love and concern as well and then I called Jason.

Our car has been in the shop. For way. too. long. So I've had no transportation. We decided there was nothing I could do at the hospital, so I stayed home with the kids waiting to hear what was going on.

Jason was x-rayed and the doctor confirmed that his collar bone was snapped in half and had shifted on top of itself. (It's pretty gross). I called one neighbor to watch the kids and another to give me a ride to the hospital. They were more than willing to help.

When I got to the hospital I talked to Jason's boss and the safety director of the company. Then a nurse took me back to see him. I knew everything was fine and that Jason would be back to perfect in no time. But someone wasn't fine. And I had seen pictures of the wreck. That crash was the equivalent of driving over 130 mph into a brick wall. Seat belts or not, there was no reason ANYONE should have survived that crash. I tried to hold back tears and hug him as gently as I could.

I didn't lose my husband today. By some miracle. Because it was no less than a miracle. And on top of that his injuries are as simple as the expected aches and pains and a broken collar bone. He's still here. I can kiss him and hug him and tell him that I love him. I could never do those things enough.

The driver of Jason's work van fractured his back. Everyone was released from the hospital with minor injuries. Nothing more than whiplash and back pain. And the driver's back and Jason's collar bone. Miracle.

Jason told me earlier about how after the impact he looked around and saw the driver of their van slumped over. He thought he was dead. Thank heavens he wasn't. Everyone but the driver and the guy in the passenger seat got out (those two were trapped in the van and had to be cut out by the fire department later) and tried to stop traffic on the highway. Jason described walking to the other driver's station wagon and seeing a lifeless body, eyes open. He described the man's hair and glasses and other details that reminded me this was a real person.

My heart breaks for the family of that other driver. Last we heard they still hadn't been notified. The accident happened at 5:34 am. They suspect he fell sleep at the wheel. His poor family. I hope they share our knowledge of our Heavenly Father's plan. I hope they will find some peace and comfort in their time of grief and suffering. They will be in my prayers.

It's been an emotional day. When I think about what happened, or what could have happened, tears show up out of nowhere. I look at Jason and they come again. I love him so much! I don't want to imagine what my life would be like without him in it. He brings so much happiness to me and the kids. He's such a wonderful, wonderful man. My very best friend.

I need to stop thinking about it. I don't like the emotions it brings. So I'll leave you with a few pictures. And my gratitude to everyone who has called or helped out or kept us in their prayers. We love you all so much!!

These were all taken early in the morning on Jason's camera phone. Thus the poor quality.

This is the station wagon that hit them. He just swerved into their lane. There was nothing they could do. I'm SO grateful for that circumstance. No one is left behind to live with the guilt of what happened. Such a strange thing to be grateful for. Perspective is drastically changed in these kinds of situations, I guess.

The work van Jason was riding in. He was directly behind the front passenger. This picture is after the doors had been cut off by the fire department.

My sweetheart sleeping after a long and traumatic day. He keeps teasing me about how I'm going to have to help dress him and bathe him for the next couple of months while he heals. I just keep reminding him that I'm happy to help so long as he understands that I've already got two little bums to wipe, so he's on his own in that department!! (Did I just share too much?) :)
Jason also bit almost completely through his tongue in the accident. I won't torture you with that picture. It's disgusting!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Pay It Forward

Got this from Lindsay!!

The first 3 people to leave a comment on this post will receive a gift from me during this year. When and what will be a surprise. There's a small catch though...Post this same thing on your own blog and then come back and leave a comment telling me you're in. Fun, huh? Remember, only the first 3 comments receive the gift!

PS. Leave me your address if I don't already have it if you know you are the one of the first 3 people!!! (Or email me if you don't want to post it!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Week 7

Week 7 was kind of weird. My "weeks" start at the end of the week because I happened to start my weigh ins on a Thursday. So the "beginning" of the week was actually the weekend. We traded babysitting with some neighbors for Valentine's. They wanted to go out Friday, so we watched their kids all night. Then Saturday night we went out.

Like I mentioned before, Jason took me to this GREAT little Chinese/Japanese place in town. They have a sushi bar and two separate menus. I knew I wanted to enjoy the evening because it was a special occasion, but I also wanted to be careful about making healthier choices.

We shared a vegetable tempura appetizer that was AMAZING!! I know that tempura is deep fried in that delicious batter, but I figured it was veggies!! Call it even? Then I just had miso soup and an order of cucumber rolls. I LOVE wasabi!! I love when you have so much of it on one roll that it burns up through your nostrils. I don't know why. I just love it.

By the end of dinner, although I knew that I had made some relatively healthy choices, I was completely stuffed. If my pants still fit I would have had to unzip them. :)

And of course I let myself enjoy those beautiful milk/white chocolate dipped strawberries I'd made later that night!!

Because I knew I was going to be eating out for Valentine's Day I knew I needed to watch myself all week. I made sure to work hard during my workouts and I kept it healthy and ate at home the rest of the time. I figured as long as I did that I should AT LEAST maintain my current weight.

But by Monday I was GAINING WEIGHT!! ARG!! I honestly thought that, worst case scenario, I'd have lost zero. Not gain!! I was seriously frustrated. I record my meals and fitness daily, so I looked back over the foods that I'd been eating and realized that although I'd been making healthy choices, I could definitely be filling up on more fruits and veggies. So for the last couple of days that's what I did. Rather than reaching for a 100 calorie pack treat I picked fresh fruit or carrot sticks with dip or something like that.

So this morning when I stepped on the scale....YAY!! Two more pounds!! I'm no longer in the 1*0's!! I've moved down to the next ten!! :) I have now lost a total of 20 pounds since the beginning of the year!!

And even more exciting than that? I've never stuck with a diet this long!! And I honestly don't feel like I'm on a diet now! At this point, for the most part, it's habit. There are still moments of weakness when I want to choose something I shouldn't, or when I want to run away from the elliptical instead of on it. But I'm doing it anyway! That's a REALLY big deal for me!!

I'm thinking that looking sexy for my anniversary get away might actually be in reach!! Yipee!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


For those of you who don't already know, when Jason and I got married we eloped. We showed up at the mayor's office in Rexburg, Idaho in jeans and asked the mayor to marry us. His secretaries were our witnesses.

Aside from the fact that my family was absent and it wasn't the temple, I wouldn't change a thing. Honestly. Okay, maybe I do wish I had pictures of my wedding day and everything. But I definitely don't regret it.

Our 'honeymoon' was spent in the Rexburg Days Inn. Fancy.

So this May is our 5 year anniversary. Our first "big" one!! We're taking our honeymoon. FINALLY!!

We didn't want to spend too much, so we decided to drive down to Vegas. We can drop the kids off with my parents on the way down. :)

We know he dates we're going, but that's about it so far. I haven't been to Vegas since I was a teenager. And most of the times I've gone we were just stopping through on our way to or from California.

So I need your help!! Which hotel should we stay at? Are there any amazing shows we should see? Any great restaurants we should eat at? Do you know of any deals we should take advantage of? Leave all the details you can in the comments! Can't wait to see what you suggest!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Diamonds are not this girl's best friend...

Yesterday morning, after SLEEPING IN, I received a sweet Happy V Day text on my phone. I got up and headed straight to the ladies' room. :) On the mirror I saw "Happy Valentine's Day!" cut out in red paper and taped to my mirror. I was free to work out and get ready without the distraction of children. Then at lunch time I was handed this...

Which contained this...

Which contained THESE...

Later that afternoon I was rid of these adorable things...

And taken to the finest restaurant in town to enjoy these...

And see this...

When we returned home, we enjoyed these...

All compliments of this guy!!

So as I said up top, diamonds are not THIS girl's best friend. But the guy who gave them to me CERTAINLY is!! :)

I love you, Jason. Thanks for the most perfect Valentine's Day a girl could ask for!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Where did Week 5 go?!

You probably didn't notice, but I've been thinking about it all week. I skipped Week 5's update. Intentionally.

So after I got all bummed out (you know when I'm talking about, I posted it) I totally blew it. And not even a little bit. I went a full week without working out and ate loads of cookies and cheesy pasta and junk. I took the kids to Applebee's one night and ordered a salad, thinking I could be good. And then I ordered spinach artichoke dip and ate practically the entire thing by myself! Delicious. And gross. I ate nothing healthy. And it only made things worse.

So when the first day of Week 6 rolled around, I knew I had gained. I figured I had probably gained at least half of the weight back, the way I'd been eating. I felt gross. I was ready to be done blowing it. Had been for a few days. Just hadn't felt like doing the work it takes to get out of that rut.

I stepped on the scale, not wanting to know, but knowing that I needed to know. 5 pounds. What? Really?! Only 5 pounds gained back?! Okay! I can do that!! I mean, of course I was bummed. That was 5 pounds I shouldn't have had to worry about. I had already lost those 5 pounds once. If I had stuck to it, it might be 5 more pounds in the other direction! But oh well. I knew I couldn't change the past so I was just going to do better in the future.

The beginning of week 6 went a little slow. I started my workouts a little slower. I didn't want to over do it and burn myself out and slip into that rut again. I didn't want another week like week 5. I started Scrawny Chef. I figured that will help make the healthy eating easier for me. I have one place to go to find my recipes and something to work on during the week to remind me of my goals. So I took it a little easy all week. But by the end of this week I was completely back on track and motivated again!

I stepped on the scale this morning and had lost the entire 5 pounds I'd gained, plus another half pound. Yahoo!! I'm actually at 1*0 pounds now. (I'm not quite ready to reveal the ACTUAL number yet). :) Anyway, so I was really looking forward to losing even just an additional half pound this week to put me over that mark and into that next range. To see that middle digit one number lower. But oh well. At least I'm back on track.

So after this week I should FOR SURE be in that next set of ten. Which I know isn't a huge deal, but entering that next range always motivates me to keep going, even if it's 1*9! I don't care. I just want to keep going!!

So here's to Week 7!! I'm sure it will go MUCH smoother than Week 5 and hopefully even better than Week 6!!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Scrawny Chef

Apparently my blog stalkers are shy. No one new came out of "the lurker's closet". Oh well. Maybe one day you'll gather courage and say hello!!

Anyway, on to something new and fun! At least, I think it's fun. So I started a new blog. I wanted to call it "Skinny Cook", but apparently someone took that one (someone who I must add has done NOTHING with their blog!), so I settled for Scrawny Chef. :)

Moving on... I just decided that I wanted to be able to find all of my healthy recipes in the same place. I'm online looking up recipes all the time anyway, so I may as well keep them somewhere I'm not likely to lose them!!

I'm hoping you'll all join in and participate. :) Try recipes, submit some of your own, take the polls, leave comments, rate the recipes you try, let me know if there are things I could change or do better. It will make it so much more fun!!

So head on over to Scrawny Chef and let me know what you think!!

Friday, February 6, 2009


Thank you to everyone who left a comment, sent an text or e-mail, or called me after my last post. All that love really helped me to feel better and get back to my normal self. I love you all!!

Non-Blogger Blog Stalkers

Every once in a while I'll get a comment from a stranger (which I LOVE!) or from someone who doesn't have a blog. Usually I think I know who those ones are. I know a few of my cousins don't blog but have said that they read others' blogs.

I did this once before and it was fun to see who was out there. Just about everyone who commented was a friend/fellow blogger. There were a few strangers who made themselves known, which was really fun to me! So today I'm doing it again. EVERYONE feel free to leave a comment! But I REALLY want to see if there are any new strangers (soon to be friends!) or secret lurkers out there!

So even if all you say is, "Hi!" I want to know you're there!! Fellow blogger or not, anonymous or not, friend or stranger, leave me some love!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

fighting my way out

This isn't a fun post. But I'm writing it anyway. Because it's real.

I know that more people than we would think deal with depression on some level at some time in their lives. I know that what I deal with is nothing compared to what some others go through. But that doesn't make what I live with any easier.

I've struggled with depression since I was really young. My depression stems from anxiety. I'm a control freak and a perfectionist. Although as I've researched more about these terms, there's a lot more to it than what comes to mind when you hear those words.

Through counseling, medication, family support and the help of the Lord I've learned to cope with it pretty well over the years. Some days are really hard. But most days are just normal days now.

I still have mood swings and bad days. When I'm on my period I still get moody. When I don't get enough sleep I still get crabby. The medication and everything doesn't make me happy. But it does help balance me out so that I can feel like ME.

But like I said, sometimes I still have bad days. I have yet to figure out exactly what causes them or how to prevent them. That's something I suspect I'll work on for the rest of my life. But in the mean time, I work on getting out of the haze of those days.

This weekend was a bad weekend. I had a pretty big panic attack on Saturday. In hindsight, I think I could feel it coming. It had been a rough week. A breakdown was probably inevitable.

Jason had to work. I was alone with the kids. When I was a teenager things were different. I'd take my panic attack out on anyone in sight. My relationship with my mom, especially, suffered greatly because of it. Now that I've grown up (a little) I try so hard not to let that happen. I can't let myself react that way because of my children.

It takes everything in my power for me to stay calm, at least as calm as I can for having a panic attack. So I usually shut down completely. I have little patience with the kids so I have to force myself to just ignore the little things.

Shutting down means the house turns into a disaster zone. (This part is really hard for me to admit, but like I said above: it's real).

My home is disgusting right now. You wouldn't believe what can happen in a weekend around here. I cleaned the upstairs yesterday. It wiped me out. And Jason helped me (in the short amount of time that he was here) yesterday with the family room.

Dishes in the kitchen are piled higher than I think I've ever seen them. We don't have a dishwasher. The prospect of doing hours of dishes by hand is keeping me from eve starting.

When I shut down like this I get completely off schedule. At night I don't sleep. I don't want to go to sleep because sleeping means waking up and having to face a new day. The aftermath of my panic attack. Logically I know this is silly for a grown woman. But it's what happens.

The next morning I'm exhausted. I get the kids breakfast when they wake up and they have free reign of the house while I catch up on the sleeping I didn't do the night before. While I'm snoozing, they're destroying.

This morning when I got out of bed all of yesterday's work on the family room had been undone. There are card games and googly eyes spread all over the floor. Mixed with toys and books and vacuum attachments.

So now comes the work. And by work, I don't mean cleaning up the mess, doing the dishes, or bathing everyone since we've actually been in our pajamas all weekend. The work is simply getting myself to start. Climbing out of this rut. I'm not here very often anymore, but when I am it feels impossible to climb out.

This is where the depression is. The anxiety brings it on it's tail. I feel like there's a fog and I don't want to fight my way through it. I just want to wait for it to lift.

But that's not how it works. If I wait, it stays longer. So today that's what I'll be doing. Fighting with myself. Fighting to get up and do. Reminding myself that once it's done it will be gone. It won't be back. At least not for a while. I can usually count on that.

I don't know what people's impressions of me are. I don't know who they think I am. But regardless of how this changes your view, I know that this part of my life isn't the real me. This is just my struggle. One of the reasons that I look forward to the coming of the Savior. One of the reasons I look forward with hope for the day that this battle will be over. The day that my older brother, Jesus Christ will free me from this earthly internal war.

Today that hope is what I'll cling to as I climb out.

P.S. I have to say that I know that my problems are nothing compared to what I know so many people are going through right now. I didn't write this post because I want people to feel sorry for me. I just needed to write it out. No matter how hard I think my day is, I know that losing a child or loved one, struggling with marriage or family issues, serious financial stresses, and more are SO difficult and I have EVERY reason to be grateful for my life! And I am. Today is simply a hard day. And I needed to share it. I hope that makes sense.