Thursday, August 29, 2013

We are buddies!

I am so grateful for my siblings!

We all really do have a special relationship.

It's amazing because we can get after each other and then 5 minutes later forgive each other and be back to laughing and having fun together.

Our parents really emphasized the importance of us, as siblings, being friends with each other. If we couldn't play nice with each other, we didn't get to play with friends. Our mom always told us that "Friends will come and go, but family is forever."

Granted, some of us at various times had closer relationships, or not so close, at one point or another. I remember Aaron and Kirsten were really close because they were the last two at home when the rest of us were gone and married. I acted like Daniel's mom when he was in high school and I was newly married—sometimes this was not a good thing and, I think, we actually fell away from each other for a long while. Me and Jessie were the first two kids so we, naturally, played together all the time and I enjoyed bossing my little sister around... What can I say, I was the oldest, I was just very motherly, I guess.

But one relationship that we all remember is Daniel and Jessie because they are the ones that came up with their own theme song, "We are buddies!" Which was always sung with arms around each other, heads squished together, big, cheesy smiles and a strong voice with emphasis on "BUDDIES!"

We all loved it and it has just become a family theme song whenever we feel close to one another or have done something together. We sing it in the same manner as it's always been sung.

I usually don't record these times of singing goofy buddy songs together, but this time I couldn't resist:

Buddies from Rachael on Vimeo.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

She will not be named...

When did the role of womanhood become so degraded as to be only sold as sex?

Believe me, I want to be looked at by my husband as sexy AND hot, but I don't have to show off my body and what it can do to the world.

Sure, I like fashion just as much as any woman, but I do not see the need to sell sex while being in fashion.

Womanhood is a right and a blessing and should be respected by all—men and women alike.

But, it really makes me sick when it is a woman, or a girl, who degrades her role by selling her body to the world like it was some kind of auction item up to the highest bidder. Leaving little to anyones imagination... of course now-a-days I don't know that anyone has to have an imagination for anything... and that's sad too.

I cannot stand that a girl (she's 20 but I can't even respect her enough to call her a woman) who presents herself as an object ends up being the most talked about, Tweeted about, Facebooked about, Head News Storied about person in America. She is getting all the publicity she ever wanted, positive or negative.

Trust me, the Devil doesn't care what kind of attention he gets, as long as he gets it and a lot of it.

The fact that this particular TV station and Award Show even allowed any of it to be shown is a disgrace to music altogether.

Do we even know who won any awards for their musical talent? I haven't heard of anything, yet. Frankly, I never have watched this particular Award Show and didn't watch it this time either. The only reason why I know anything about this grotesque performance is because everyone feels the need to post a picture of her so we can all see how disgusting she really was, or send links so we can "see for ourselves" just how appalling it is.

It's human nature to be curious.

It's YouTube's job to keep those curiosities fed, and I am sure that they are seeing a pretty penny after the nation's curiosity of what happened at the recent Awards Show.

You know the more "we" unknowingly encourage everyone to "see" what she (who will not be named on my blog any time soon) the more popular she becomes, the more our children will talk about it, because we are and the more likely they are to want to watch it to see for themselves what everyone is talking about.

As for me, this is the only time you will see me post about this disgrace on womanhood and the slap in the face to intimacy.

I won't mention her name.

I won't give you any links.

I, frankly, am a little bugged that I am even posting about it ambiguously! You'll figure it out and want to decide for yourself if I am right or wrong—it's up for debate.

I just wanted to express my disdain for such an event as this that degrades all that I stand for and all that I have taught my girls to stand for.

I was saddened, as Marc and I walked along the Vegas Strip to see the shops and shows, to be bombarded by young women barely clothed only to make money from pictures people wanted to take with them.

Sex sells and they have learned that that is what the beauty of a woman's body can be—money.

Women are worth more than money.

Women are not just a body.

If we don't want men or women to only want a body then we need to show them more than just some skin!

We need to prove we are worth more than what the media tries to show us we are.

I think I'm sexy!


I said it.

I am a mom to 3 children with Fragile X Syndrome. I use my free time to advocate for them. My body is not perfect because I don't have the genetics to be pregnant 3 times without getting some stretch marks, but I will take credit that I was able to give birth to 3 human beings. I have bags under my eyes from being up late at night to care for one or more of our children. I am a few pounds over weight because sometimes I want to have ice cream late at night with my hubby when we have time alone while the kids are asleep. I exercise to be healthy and strong enough to take care of my children and my husband. I am not embarrassed about what I wear just because it is not what the world deems as "sexy." I love to cook and love to have others over to enjoy the food I make. I have my used my talents to serve and inspire.

I'd like to hear what "She, who will not be named," thinks makes her sexy... actually, NO, I wouldn't. It would most likely make me sick.

To any of you young women or men out there who may read this, PLEASE, don't let curiosity kill your appropriate innocence and certainly don't let the media and their pop stars show you how to be sexy.

I want to end with two insightful quotes that I hope help you understand why I am so passionate about the subject and beauty of womanhood:

“A beautiful, modest, gracious woman is creation’s masterpiece” 
                                                                   -David O. McKay

“A woman of sense and manners is the finest and 
most delicate part of God’s creation, the glory of her Maker. … 
He gave the best gift either God could bestow or man receive” 
                                         -Daniel Defoe, English writer

And just because this made me laugh, 
and I really can't stay mad for too long, here's my sexy photo...

Monday, August 26, 2013

An Overdue Getaway

All married couples need it.

All married couples want it.

All married couples who want to stay happily married couples have to have it.

A getaway without the kids!

So if you are married and don't have kids yet... get away while you can! Ha!

Married couples with kids know how hard it is to arrange one night away from the kids. We know it's even harder to get 5 nights away from the kids. It takes a lot of juggling and a lot of good-natured, service-oriented, loving and forgiving family members and friends!

My mom had them the first night—she survived... barely. Oh, the kids were fine, it was having to give them all their meds that was the hard part... wait, no... the hard part was having to let them know that the 3 kittens that Grandma Judy had been taking care of while they were there were now going to a new home.



The kittens leaving for a new home was actually not the hard part for my mom, it was the hard part for my sister, Jessie.

Jessie had to deal with Brother's and Sister's complete and total melt-downs over losing "their" kitties so someone else. Jessie got the tears, fits, tantrums and constant persistent questions about why the kittens had to leave.

Oh! And I forgot to mention that she had to deal with Baby's reaction to a mosquito bite on her little wrist, which, I think, was a bit more of a reaction than Jessie expected...

Whenever I got these updates I felt bad that all our caregivers were having to deal with our kids' issues, but on the other hand, I was also having too much fun to let it worry me to pieces.

Jessie, once in a while, would send me little text messages to let me know how the kids were doing. It was so cute. I got messages like these:

"Baby found this headband when she got here. She slept with it on and CANNOT be moved. It is her princess crown." MrT did find out later that she really meant that it cannot be moved,
this pic is her after the ordeal of getting the "crown" back, was over. Phew!

"Brother eating his pretzels pretending he doesn't know I'm taking his pic."

"Sister told me the boys have gaterlaters (Gatorades) and her friend is having a autism (baptism)"
I love her mixed up words!

"She's happy now. Foot cream, anti-itch cream, tub and a pop-up book."
This was all after her reaction to the mosquito bite was getting worse and Jessie was trying to give her some relief.
The last two nights we were gone the kids stayed at Marc's parents. They watched movies, helped Grandpa on some jobs and went to a park! I have to say, Lynne is braver than me, I hate taking my kids to the park. She said they did well, and Gary was there to help her.

OK, enough about what the kids were doing while we were having fun! Let me tell you about our fun!

I had the time of my life!

Cue music!

I was at a beach with my hubby and friends all for the purpose of having fun! No other reason to be there... just for fun! Woo hoo!

And boy did we!

Walks along the beach, walks in town, dinner at local restaurants, beach cruisers on the board walk from Ocean Beach to Pacific Beach, Surfing, Salt water, Sun, Beach bums, Pent house views of the beach, Oceanside Sunsets, Laughter, and did I say Surfing!!!

We planned this trip to meet up with our friend, Thomas, from Germany. We also got to meet his good friend Yalda.

I'm going to let the pictures do most of the talking:

I HAD to take a picture of the mirror placement in the bathroom of our hotel room on the way to San Diego... Ya, we only paid $27 but I really didn't enjoy the view.... Ha! Who put's a mirror behind the toilet anyway?

Once we got settled into our little room we met up with Thomas and had lunch at a beachfront cafe.

Marc and Thomas on the boardwalk

All 3 of us at the pier

We hung out on the balcony of Thomas' Penthouse rental a lot...

It had a great view!

From left to right: Thomas, Yalda, me and Marc

This bottle of "Ghost Scream" hot sauce made us laugh.

Have you ever had clam fettuccine? Ya. I didn't realize it came with the clams in full attire...
It was interesting, but hey, at least I tried the local cuisine!

Just enjoying the sand and surf

I just had to sneak a picture of this grandfather teaching his granddaughter to surf.

A view along Pacific Beach

Got all our gear rented.

Crossing the streets with our surfboards is a cool feeling.

Getting the basics

 Don't let anyone

fool you into thinking

 that a wetsuit is easy the first time...

We would have looked like locals if our wetsuits didn't say "RENTAL" on them... 

I was the first to go out to be taught!

Ya ya, I know the waves look massive... I was learning and I felt pretty cool!

Marc's turn to head out with me.

Marc in the waves after a failed attempt

Me, hoping I'll get up this time.


Up on my knees but falling over...

Marc on his knees. He actually got up on his feet a few times but I don't think it was caught on camera.

I got a shot of Thomas up on his feet... no, not the guy on the right, the guy on the left in the water!

Thomas was using our coach's  surf board for a while

I never did get up on my feet... but, I seriously had the best time out there! It was tiring, hard work swallowing salt water, letting the waves beat me up, walking in against the tide... I! LOVED! IT!

I laughed and screamed with excitement most of the time. Maybe that's why I swallowed so much salt water. It sure cleared out my sinuses though!

Me, trying to look like a sexy surfer... ah hem, I know it's not working... just take the picture.

However, this guy is sexy!

Our 3 rental surfboards resting on the beach while we decide if we want to go out for another beating.

This is my California Surfer Girl look... the guy behind me kinda ruins the shot 'cause he looks like he's peeing...

Here is what I lovingly call our "penguin shot"

Out to dinner with our Surf coach and wife. One of the best Italian restaurants I've ever been to. Mmmmmm.

The next morning we woke up at 3:30am to take Yalda to the airport. On the way back from the airport we swung by to see the San Diego LDS Temple.


After we took a nap from our early morning adventure we headed out on our borrowed beach cruisers and went to Ocean Beach for window shopping and lunch.

And lunch was the bomb-diggity! Hodaddies! Best burger I've ever had!

I just had to take a picture of this colorful Hostel.

The side door was my favorite!

I saw this little gem with the wall art and just had to take a pic.

Marc's trying to steal someone's lunch...

Ha! Check out Thomas' face... I wonder if I had a bug in my hair or something...

We like to ride our bicycles!

Marc had to take a picture of me and Thomas goofing around at the traffic light. Whenever you pushed the  little "walk" button on the pole it would say in a man's mechanical voice, "WAIT." Thomas kept pushing it because it made us laugh. I got a dirty look when I laughed really loud after Thomas and I had pushed the "wait" button several times and this guy, a little perturbed asked his family next to us, "So are we gonna wait?" I couldn't help but laugh... I guess he didn't here the traffic post's suggestion...  Marc thought we were nuts so he sat back and took a picture of us instead...

We rode back to Pacific Beach to get back into the water and have some fun!
Marc wasn't feeling well so he laid down on the beach while Thomas and I went and crashed the waves. I tried body surfing but it wasn't going too well for me. I still had a lot of fun though. There's just something about being in the ocean waves, watching for them to rise and come crashing down. Oh, I can't wait to go to the beach again!

After body surfing we went to a great little hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant that we had heard about. It was amazing and definitely worth the crowd—they had a meeting going on inside so the owner rounded up some chairs from his nearby hostel and set us up at a fold-up table outside on the walkway! It was awesome and made the memory that much more memorable.
Oh, and after we went body surfing we saw a broken surfboard laying in the trash can at the beach so we grabbed it because I told Marc, "hey, at least this way it will fit into our car!

The local beach bum informed us we got a good find... hee hee hee!

Our last day in San Diego we just had time to say goodbye and pack in our surf board!

Spiffy! Maybe they should make a hinged surf board for more convenient packing...

Marc and I were having such a great time together that we just didn't want it to end. So we called Grandma Lynne to see if she was OK with the kids a second night and we got a hotel in Vegas for $21.

Ya, we got some good deals on this trip!

We wanted to go see a show but it never worked out so we just checked out all the local stuff and had a great time being goofy.

There were a lot of street performers that night, but my favorite was when I recognized Turf from last year's "America's Got Talent." I was excited to see him dance but saddened to see he's back out on the streets performing...

I was also really shocked to meet "The Rock" mmm hmm... He struck a pose just for our shot!

I love candy, but come on! Isn't this a bit much?!

This was a statue in our hotel! HHHAAAAA!!!

You can never go wrong with watching the water show at the Belagio.
Marc and I are so thankful to those who made our get-away possible! It was such a great way to reconnected as husband and wife and forget for a time our struggles in parenting 3 children with Fragile X Syndrome. We love them, we truly do (I hope that shows on this blog), but being a better husband and wife helps us to be a better Mom and Dad.