April 30, 2010

Little gems

My sister, Beckie, found this incredible article from 1982 (the year I was born) about my British Grandmother, Eileen Rarick. I just gobbled up these few paragraphs about her because I have very vague memories of her since she died 6 years after I was born. For those of you who don't want to read the article I will just give you a brief synopsis: She married my Granddad Rarick when she was 18-years old. He was in the U.S. Military so she traveled the globe with him and they raised 6 children together: two in England, two in the U.S. (one being my dad), one in France, and one in Germany. Then at age 56 she, along with my two aunts, received her Bachelors in Leisure Services from Central Washington University. I love the quote in the article from my Granddad about her: "She's very quick. She's very witty. She's got a mind that snaps like a rubber band. She is a very pleasant lady. She had to be to stay with me."

Whenever my dad would tell stories about my Grandma Rarick, he always mentioned her witty British humor (something I think my dad inherited). To this day, my family has deeply embedded British pride. I, myself, have visited England twice - once when I was 12 and again when I was 17. I loved spending time with my British relatives and gleaning them for tid bits about my dad when he was a young boy living in England. I loved the rolling green hills, breathtaking castles, and charming little towns littered with thatched-roof houses and cobblestone paths.

Hopefully someday I can make a third trip over there with my own family.

And if you would like to read the article, just click on the link below. It's called: "She literally bombed out but she's back." Scroll up a bit and you will see a picture of my Grandma and Granddad Rarick and two Aunts. So neat!

Ellensburg Daily Record - Google News Archive Search

April 28, 2010

These are a few of my favorite things

Lately the common saying: "Time flies" has been really hitting home. The other day Toby ran up to me and threw his arms around my neck. He was dressed in his mini tie and adorable white button-down shirt. I had to blink back the tears because in that millisecond my mind flashed forward to a much older Toby. One that didn't sit on my lap anymore while we read books with his bulldozer PJ's or have a pretend conversations on his play phone. I saw a young man asking me for help with his homework or telling me about his date for the Prom.

So lately I have been trying to crystallize in my mind all the quirks and funny things about my little man that I know someday will be gone. Here are just few:

  • You know how some people have a personal bubble they don't want you to invade (like standing too close)? Toby has an imagination bubble with boundaries. Sometimes he will be in the "Toby-Zone", talking on his play cell phone or singing a song to himself. Whenever I try to pretend I'm on the other line talking to him or sing along with him, he gets really upset. He puts his hand up and says, "STAY!" As if he is saying "Stay out of my imaginary world! This is my time." It cracks me up more than anything.
  • I have counted 8 little freckles on his nose. So cute! He is looking more like a little boy every day. *sniff*
  • Toby has no fear. His favorite activity would probably be taking all the couch cushions off our couch, climbing onto our windowsill and plunging into the pillows without a second thought. He's my little Evil Knievel.
  • Toby is a screamer. I still haven't heard a child equal to his lung capacity. One of my biggest challenges is when we are in the car and he feels the need to scream everything he says to me. He starts out singing the ABC's normally: "A-B-C-D-E-F-G..." but by the time he gets to "Q-R-S" he is screaming is at the top of his lungs and head banging (literally hitting his head against his car seat). So I will try to distract him with "What does a duck say?" He makes a noise like a duck with an anger problem: "QUAAAAAAAAACK!" Then I will make a futile attempt to quiet him down and whisper: "Toby can you talk soft like this?" He screams: "SOFT!" There are some days I feel I have lost my the hearing (and my mind), but I just know there will come a day when I will be telling him all these stories and having a good laugh together. Until then, I think I need to invest in some ear plugs. :)
  • Toby loves my hair. Before he goes down for his nap or for bedtime, I will cradle his long body in my arms and he will stroke my hair until he is almost asleep. I love it.
  • Toby is such a charmer and social butterfly. Whenever we are in a public setting he will go out of his way to say "Hi" to everyone that passes by. Even when people try to ignore him he will make sure they hear him by leaning out of the cart and repeating, "Hi. Hi. Hi. Hi. Hi." until they finally look at him.
  • Have you ever seen those fainting goats? They are goats that when startled will freeze up and suddenly fall to the ground. Toby does something similar when we are outside playing, except he is throwing himself to the ground and rolling around just for the fun of it.
  • I don't know if it's possible to have a more affectionate toddler. I get at least 20 hugs and kisses from him a day. Since he was a baby one of his many nick-names is "snuggles."
Toby, thanks for making life more colorful and giving me a reason to laugh and be kid almost every day. I love you, my wild little guy.

The picture below pretty much epitomizes Toby's personality. LOVE IT.

April 19, 2010

I need a vacation

Today's just been "one of those days." And it doesn't help that every time I log into Facebook someone is bragging about their latest vacation in Hawaii or the Bahamas. And as blissful as those places sound, I would even take Panguitch, Utah right now. I am just VERY ready to be somewhere by myself with nothing but an iPod and a good book to read. And let me tell you why: (Brace yourself. You might want to grab some cheese for this post because there will be plenty of whine. ha).

I woke up actually in a pretty good mood, despite my lack of sleep (anyone know a good remedy for snoring?). Toby woke up in a not so good mood. He absolutely refused to let me change his completely full and soggy diaper (for some reason he only does this with me, not Nick) and kept screaming, "Back! Back! (for me to put the diaper back)" Oh well, I'll change it when he's distracted with a little Sesame Street. I left him on the couch with sippy in hand while I stealthily snatched another diaper. Apparently I wasn't fast enough. I came back to a huge wet spot on the couch. OK, no big deal. Just clean it up. I grab the fabric/stain remover and Toby decides he wants to follow Kaya upstairs. By the time I get upstairs (I was literally 30 seconds behind him) he is spraying Windex all over the kitchen (and don't worry, none of it was ingested). So now I'm getting pretty annoyed. I open up all the windows to air out the potent "fresh lemon scent" (gag me). As I'm wiping off the cupboards, I notice Toby has left a little present in his newly changed diaper. Don't they always have the best timing with poo? I change it. Not 20 minutes later he leaves me another present in his diaper. It suddenly dawned on me that he hadn't had any bowel movements all weekend. This was the reason for the abundance of poo this morning.

I shake it off. Whatever, its been a rough start but I was determined to have a good day since the weather is GORGEOUS right now: Clear, blue skies and temps in the 70's!

So I decide to get out of the house. We went to Wal-Mart. I got all 5 items on my list without much of a fuss (just had to visit the fish aquarium and promise Toby a new ball if he sits in the cart. I'm so bad with bribes.) The check-out line was another story. Toby was DONE with sitting in the cart and wanted to get out and play with his new ball. So he kept throwing it out of the cart and screaming for me to let him out. When I took away the ball, he got back at me by throwing a plastic donation jar from the cashiers counter. Oh and did I mention the checker was new and took FOR-E-VER to ring us up? While people are impatiently piling up behind us, I suddenly realize that this mornings events were probably a sign that I should have never stepped foot out of the house.

We get home and I decide to let Toby and Kaya unleash all their pent-up energy in the our wonderful, fenced backyard. I'm cutting up some apples when Toby suddenly decides he wants to go downstairs and play with his toys. As I'm about to give him a piece of apple, I smell it and almost dry heave. Dog poo. My eyes dart from one end of the room to the other, scouring the floor. No poo. Then I knew it before I even looked. A fresh Kaya turd was smeared all over Toby's sandal, my jeans, our couch, and tragically, my prized electric blanket. AHHHHH!!!!! @#!$%*%$#!*&%@#$#@*#$%$#@#$%$#@#$%^%$#

It's safe to say that I lost it at this point.

After I clean up that mess and count to 10 a few more times, I decide to feed Toby some lunch. That seemed like a harmless enough activity. Well Toby felt the need to spice things up yet again by dumping his RED juice all over Kaya. I abruptly ended lunchtime and tried to wipe off the red stain from Kaya's coat, making a mental note that I will probably just have to give her a bath after Toby goes to bed. It was then that I smelled it: Poopy diaper #3! And this ones so bad I have to get completely new pants for Toby. OK I had reached my breaking point. It was nap time whether Toby liked it or not.

So we took a nice 1.5 hour nap together. It was the best part of the day.

We wake up, go to the park, soak up some Vitamin D and head home. No drama. YES! It was then I decided to call Nick and tell him my series of unfortunate events. So I did. He sympathized, laughed a little, and reminded me again that he was almost done with school for the semester. Hang in there...yadda yadda. OK, OK. The worst is over, right?

WRONG! Just as I hang up with Nick, Kaya barfs all over the carpet.

By this point I was almost laughing at how many times I had to use the stain remover in one day.

Now I am sitting here drowning my sorrows with some cookie dough and relishing in the sound of silence.

Oh how I need a vacation.

April 9, 2010


It always seems like once I start to feel a little comfortable with things the way they are, that is when they change. I'm beginning to realize a very real truth in the adage, "Nothing is as constant as change."

But even though there is apart of me that fights change, wants to run from it, and wishes that things could always stay the same, another part of me is grateful to be able to face the unknown and the unfamiliar. I've been trying to look at how exhilarating going into uncharted territory can be and am just starting to love the idea that change can bring us opportunities for growth as well as give us amazing new experiences. Alright, alright. I will stop trying to sound all deep and philosophical and just tell you exactly what's gone down the past month:

Change #1 - My parents have gone from being about 1.5 miles away to about 1 1/2 hours away. Last weekend they moved to North Ogden. I know some of you are saying, "Boo-hoo Debbie. My parents live a few states away. At least they are still within a reasonable driving distance." I know Ogden really isn't that far away. I think that what irked me the most about them moving was how sudden it was. There wasn't much of a warning or time for me to digest it. It literally felt like one day I am sitting at their house for Sunday dinner and the next day they are putting their furniture into a moving van. I think the hardest thing about them moving is that I can't just drop by their house whenever I want or go on morning walks with my mom during the summertime. And not only that but I've lost my free babysitters. Truly a great tragedy indeed. But on the flip side, its forced me to dig deep, real deep to find the culinary master within. You see, since Nick is gone in the evenings 5 days out of the week and since we would eat dinner at my parents house on Sundays, the only day I was really able to cook was on Saturday. And to be honest I rarely even cooked then. What can I say, when Nick married me he probably got the least domestic woman in the world. But now I can actually try out some of those recipes that have been collecting dust in my kitchen drawer.

Change #2 - I have been called as 1st Counselor in the Relief Society. Now again I am sure there are some of you mumbling to yourself, "What's the big deal? It's not like you were called as the Relief Society President." True. Very true. But I guess I am one of those people who enjoy being under the radar. I like being known, but not in the limelight. So when the call was extended, it was all a bit daunting at first. I felt scared, overwhelmed, and completely inadequate. After all I have been in the ward less than a year and still feel like I don't know very many people. But after many prayers and talks with some inspired people, I have felt more than ever that this calling is where the Lord wants me right now. Not only that, I have to remind myself that I am not alone. I have the strength of the Lord helping make "weak things strong" AND I have the amazing women in the Presidency. They have been extremely patient with my never-ending stream of questions and incessant inquiries like: "Now who is that? Where do they live?" And every time those little doubts start to creep into my mind, I try to remember where they are coming from. Some of it I know is just my own insecurities, but mostly I know someone is working very hard on me to make me doubt and discredit my abilities. Honestly, I am very excited about this new calling and am grateful for the opportunity to love and serve the woman in my ward.

Change #3 - OK so this one doesn't really count as change because nothin' has happened yet. But I thought some of you might like to know that Nick and I have decided to try for baby #2! It has taken a while for me to be completely on board for this one. Mostly because this time around I know what I am getting into. Those of you who know Toby, know he was NOT an easy baby. He cried A LOT, didn't sleep through the night until he was almost a year old, and just seemed more high maintenance than any baby I have ever seen. For the longest time I would look at baby's in their car seats and say, "Nope. Not ready to take on that yet. The 15 hour days with Toby are enough right now." But all of a sudden something inside of me did a 180. I was holding my sweet 7 month old niece and watching her smile and gushing over her fat rolls and something whispered inside of me, "It's time." Right then I realized I had been hit by the baby arrow and there was no turning back. Suddenly I was looking at pregnant women in stores and instead of feeling sorry for them and their discomforts, I suddenly wanted to be them; I wished I were the one picking out cute, miniature, clothing while waddling around the store. So yeah, hopefully sometime soon I will be announcing that we are expecting a sibling for the T-man. I can't wait!