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Year: 2006

I am the Luckiest

I am the Luckiest

I don’t get many things right the first time
In fact, I am told that a lot
Now I know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls
Brought me here

Since today is our anniversary (two whole years! Wahoo!), I thought I would tell you all why Micah is the best husband ever. It’s not because he is super handsome, although he is, or because he makes me laugh all the time, although he does. It’s not even because he can whip up a five course Japanese meal for a party of 12 and not even break a sweat, like he did last night.

And where was I before the day
That I first saw your lovely face?
Now I see it everyday
And I know that I am the luckiest

Micah is the best husband ever because every morning after we have breakfast here (in Bountiful) he does all of the breakfast dishes and cleans up the kitchen. When we went over to my friends house for cheesecake and we hadn’t had dinner yet, he found me a turkey sandwich so
because he knows I need something substantial to eat (unlike him, who can get by on a couple of otter pops). Then while the rest of us were making a mess, Micah was in the kitchen helping my friend’s mother clean it up.

What if I’d been born fifty years before you
In a house on a street where you lived?
Maybe I’d be outside as you passed on your bike
Would I know?

Yesterday, after I decided we needed to buy some baby clothes for our little one so he would be more real to us, Micah was right there helping me decide which onsies were the cutest. I love how he is so hands-on about even little things like what our kid is going to wear for the first few months of his life. He is usually the first to jump in an help when something needs to be done, cleaned, or fixed.

And in a white sea of eyes
I see one pair that I recognize
And I know
That I am the luckiest

And he always finds a way to do what he needs to do. Like yesterday when we found out our ice cream maker didn’t work any more– after we had already cooked up two batches of custard–he pulled out my Grandma’s old ice cream maker that didn’t work and tried three different methods before finding the solution. We had delicious homemade ice cream in no time, and I’m sure my family will be using their newly fixed ice cream maker in the months to come.

Next door there’s an old man who lived to his nineties
And one day passed away in his sleep
And his wife; she stayed for a couple of days
And passed away
I’m sorry, I know that’s a strange way to tell you that I know we belong

I tell you, I don’t know what I did right, but I’m pretty sure I landed the best husband, and soon to be best father, in the whole world. It sure does make eternity seem a lot more manageable.

I love you more than I have ever found a way to say to you.
But I am, I am the luckiest.

*Micah sang that song, Ben Fold’s “The Luckiest,” to me at our reception.

The 12 Courses of Christmas Eve

The 12 Courses of Christmas Eve

Ever since my my oldest siblings were in Junior High, French assignments have been a part of our Christmas holiday. Sometimes we eat a French breakfast (bread and hot chocolate) every day for a week. Sometimes we sing Christmas carols in French on Christmas Eve. Sometimes we stay up late keeping vigil over the Nativity scene until midnight when we put Baby Jesus in the manger and go to bed. This last activity has become part of the family lore as one time it led to Isaac’s toe being severely cut in a freak accident involving a bed frame and a piece of wax. Up until tonight, that was the pinnacle of French assignment excitement. This is because tonight Nate, my youngest brother and the last to participate in the French- homework-over-Christmas-break tradition, decided to out-do us all by choosing the assignment the other ten of us managed to avoid: making a 12 course meal with 12 desserts for dinner on Christmas Eve.

I don’t know why Nate decided it was a good idea to add eleven more courses and eleven more desserts to our normal French onion soup and Buche de Noel meal, but he did. This was difficult enough without the rule that everything served had to be “French,” although with a bit more advanced planning, and perhaps if Christmas Eve had not fallen on a Sunday, it may have been a bit easier. But it wasn’t easy at all, and so we sat down to dinner with roughly 11 courses and 8 desserts. With all 11 of us putting our heads together (and especially with two returned missionaries from France), surely we could come up with another course and four more desserts. After several comments like, “Too bad the green beans in the cupboard aren’t French cut,” and, “Are you counting the water as a course already?” and, “How do you say ‘horseradish mustard’ in French?” We finally got up to 12. Nevermind that we had to split the carrots and celery into two different courses, or that the chocolates we’d been snacking on since church became a dessert, or that only one person had enough room to eat one of the cookies that we offered up as another dessert: the assignment was completed successfully. What took more than 24 hours to prepare (we did get a headstart on the French onion soup and Buche de Noel), took only an hour and a half to eat.

And in the process, Nate may have eclipsed Isaac as the king of French project adventures.

Our “French” Meal:
1. French onion soup
2. French bread
3. Crackers and camembert cheese
4. Crackers and brie cheese
5. Olives
6. Celery
7. Carrots
8. Tossed salad with French dressing
9. Red grape juice
10. Potato salad
11. Pumpkin chocolate chip bread
12. Cranberry Orange bread

Our “French” Desserts:
1. Buche de Noel
2. Crepes
3. Strawberry yogurt
4. Peaches
5. Oranges
6. Clementines
7. Chocolates
8. More Chocolate
9. Almond Roca
10. White grape juice
11. Cookies
12. Peppermint sticks

Ants? Ants Make Me Crazy!

Ants? Ants Make Me Crazy!

I mentioned briefly in the previous post about the ants in our apartment. When we first moved in, we had tons of ants all over the place. We put out this ant poison, Terro, and that seemed to take care of most of them. Except for the ones next to the sink. Terro is supposed to work by having the ants take some back to their nests and then sharing it around so they all die, but I don’t believe there is a nest. I am pretty sure the ants arise spontaneously from the counter, the sink, and any dishrags we may have drying on the sink. Which is why I hate them so much. No matter how thoroughly I clean, they seem to just appear. I cannot track them. I do not know where they come from.

This morning was just about the breaking point. Since I have lost faith in Terro, I have been spraying them with bleach, and last night I sprayed the sink, the counter, the rag with bleach before I went to bed. But when I woke up this morning, there were ants all over the place. I sprayed more bleach on them, then I pulled out the peanut butter–which resides in the cupboard just above the sink–to make sandwiches with. Now, the past few times I have opened the peanut butter, I’m not going to lie, there have been a few ants in there. They are mostly dead, so I just scoop out the top of the peanut butter and go about my business. Yesterday I closed the lid as tightly as I could, figuring the ants got in there because the lid wasn’t closed tightly enough. Boy, was I wrong. There were lots of ants in there this morning. So many that it wasn’t worth it to scoop it out. Half a jar of peanut butter went into the trash.

Does anybody have any ideas about how to track down where these little beasts are coming from? Do you have any surefire ways to kill them? I’m going crazy here!

Sorry about the Google Image . . . no time to draw or take pictures. And we’re heading to Utah tonight, so our blogging may be sparse for the next two weeks.

CookieFest 2006

CookieFest 2006

By way of introduction, two years ago my roommates Jodie and Dorian gave me a Christmas cookies recipe book. Micah and I were engaged then, and since we were moving to Hawaii just a few weeks later, we decided to make hundreds of cookies for the going-away party we were throwing for ourselves. A tradition was born. This was CookieFest’s third year and it was the biggest and best yet.

We started by choosing six different cookie recipes from the book and then deciding whether we would need to double or triple the recipe to get the right amount of cookies. We added up how much flour, sugar, eggs, butter, etc. we would need to pull off this stunt, and listed other ingredients we would need to buy. By Friday night we were ready to roll and by eight o’clock we had three of the doughs made. I was hoping to get at least four made, but just as I was finishing the third one, the power went out and didn’t come back on until almost 11:00. But we were back at it with a vengence at 9:00 Saturday morning and at 10:30 Saturday night we pulled the last batch out of the oven. We took a short lunch break and a slightly longer running break, so all in all we spent about 3 hours on Friday and 12 hours on Saturday in the kitchen baking cookies. This includes the time spent saving the half-prepared plates from attacking ants who seemed to have a thing for poppy seeds. Luckily, Micah caught the problem before it got out of hand and only three cookies were lost. Unluckily, the plates were lying on our bed at the time (there wasn’t anywhere else to put them). I think the ants were all gone by the time we went to sleep, though. *sigh* We love Hawaiian bugs.

Here is CookieFest 2006, by the numbers:
Flour: 33 cups

Butter: 10 1/4 cups
Sugar: 9 3/4 cups
Eggs: 13
Candied cherries Micah had to carve the pit out of: too many
Total hours spent: 15
Plates made: 25
Cookies made: 500 (approximately)
Size of the kitchen in which this was all done in: tiny (as evidenced by the pictures–notice the utter lack of counter space.)
Things we don’t even want to think about: how many times we washed the two pans we own, how many degrees we let into the kitchen by opening the oven door, how high our energy bill is going to be.

But the tradition lives on and now we get to spread our Christmas Cheer to all of our friends out here. For those of you who don’t get to taste the cheer, at least you get to see it.

Merry Christmas to All!
Be Our Guide

Be Our Guide

The Adventures of Micah and Lizzie continue. We had some errands to run down in town today, and afterwards we went to a little TNT (Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training) Christmas/End of Honolulu Marathon Party. The party started at 5:30, but we didn’t finish with our errands until almost 6:00, so we were running a little bit late. No surprise there. Even when we plan for bad traffic we end up being late because we didn’t plan for there not to be any Eastbound on-ramps to the freeway. And then there was the tricky little part about us forgetting to bring the actual address of the place we were trying to go. A slight miscommunication on our part. Let me assure you it will not happen again.

But there we were, 45 minutes late, heading in the right direction but not really knowing where we were going. Then, off to the left, we see a car with a TNT license plate frame. A twist of fate? We decide it must be. For the next 20 minutes we tail this car as closely as we dare. And, just as we suspected, when we got to the general vicinity of the party they started to slow down and look at addresses. They missed the turn-off once or twice, and we were pretty sure we were scaring them by following them so closely, but they were our only hope of getting to the party. It was quite miraculous if you ask me. Oahu’s southside is not a small place, and the chances of us seeing that license plate frame right then were quite slim indeed. The chances of them actually going to the same place we were? Even slimmer. When we pulled in we found that the driver was our friend Gail, and she hadn’t even noticed the creepy couple in the maroon Passat in her rearview mirror.

We had a great time at the party and realized that we are going to miss the TNT crowd a lot when we leave here. Good thing they have chapters all over the US. You can bet we’ll be keeping our eyes out for them.

The Other Side of the Marathon

The Other Side of the Marathon

We just can’t seem to get away from all of this running stuff. The Honolulu Marathon was yesterday and Team in Training was calling our name yet again. So, although we had to wake up at 4:00 in the morning to drive down to town for the event, we said we’d be there and we were. It would have been an entirely different matter if we’d had to run it, of course, but we didn’t. We just had to make millions of peanut butter and honey sandwiches and direct the hundreds of purple-jerseyed people who were walking around like they just got off a rather uncomfortable horse towards the TNT tent. Good memories of our own 26.2 mile ride were abundant, I assure you.

The marathon is a lot different when you are on the opposite side of the finish line. We were actually able to see the winners come in and are happy to report that we probably would have been over half way through when the first African broke through the tape at 2:13:39.

Besides being able to see the winners, we also got a peak into how much preparation and dedication goes in to getting everyone across the finish line. Team in Training, for example, had chapters from all over the US represented. After the race all of the runners/walkers were supposed to check in at the TNT tent to let us know they got in and were okay. But some forgot, some couldn’t find our tent, and some were still on the course nearly 12 hours after the race began. All of the coaches, coordinators, and staff members continued to keep track of each of their teammates until they had all crossed the finish line. When we left, there were still 4 people left on the course, and the TNT staff was ready and waiting to greet them all as they finally crossed the line. They knew their pace, where they were on the course, and approximately how long it would take them to walk the last few miles.

Since it was Sunday and we didn’t get to go to church, I couldn’t help but find some sort of way to tie the gospel into our experience. So, I’d like to encourage all of you to take a minute to think about the support group you have on the other side who are tracking your progress, watching and rooting for you as you struggle through the difficult miles when you feel like you’ve hit the wall, and anxiously awaiting the moment when you cross the line so they can finally greet you with the words, “Well done!”

No Chinchillas Allowed

No Chinchillas Allowed

We are not having a chinchilla. *sigh* We are having a boy. He was being very modest during the ultrasound, though, so we have to take the doctor’s word for it. He could see all sorts of things we couldn’t see. But we could see his head and face. In fact, we could see that he was sticking his tongue out at us and making faces.

Either that or he was doing the little baby wave and saying, “Hi Dad and Mom!” It was probably the faces. I can’t imagine where he got that from . . .

He also surprised us by being bigger than they expect a 19 week old fetus to be. He was the size of a 20 week old fetus. Imagine that. This was especially surprising considering the havoc his enormous size has wreaked on my girlish figure:

But he is not necessarily big enough for them to change my due date. Maybe I’ll be due April 24th. Maybe I’ll be due May 1st. Who knows? Either way I am about to the halfway point, which is kind of exciting.

Another thing that is kind of exciting is that this is our 100th post. And in case you are wondering, all of the pictures are of our boy’s head, with his body going off to the left side and his arm up by his head at the top of the picture. Isn’t he just the cutest little thing you ever did see?

Or Forever Hold Your Peace

Or Forever Hold Your Peace

Okay, so we are down to a couple of days before we find out if our little alien peanut will be a boy, a girl, or a chinchilla. According to recent medical studies the chances of us having a soft, South American rodent are such that the odds are respectively 49.5%, 49.5%, and 1%. So, here is what everybody thinks thus far (in no particular order):

Adrian- girl

Jodie – a girl named Polly
Polly – girl
Chad & Melissa-girl
Mom Blackhurst-boy
Lizzie’s subconscious – boy
Lizzie’s consciousness – girl
Micah – chinchilla (I’m crossing my fingers)

If you would like to add or change your vote you have until Thursday. Please drop us a note in the comments area and let us know what you think. The winners will win something awesome from somebody someday.

And now, for a special blog post bonus Lizzie is going to relate some recent amusing dreams she had about our little fetus. Take it away Lizzie.

Thank you, Micah. I appreciate that little introduction. Although I usually think of our little fetus as a girl, when I dream of it, it’s a boy. In the most recent dream (which I believe occurred on Saturday morning), we awoke to find the baby in our bed. Despite being born about 20 weeks early, he was surprisingly large and well-developed. But, as you can imagine, the two of us were a little bit panicked. I think I was also a little bit confused . . . I thought the baby came out of Micah. The baby was still attached to the umbilical cord (which, I believe, is how I realized he actually came out of me), so we thought there might be a chance that we could put him back where he belonged. Micah went to call the doctor to find out how such a procedure could be performed, but before they could tell us what to do we realized that he was a happy and healthy little boy and we might as well cut the cord and enjoy him.

My first birthing dream was somewhat similar in that he was born 20 weeks early and came out smooth as a greased pig (only in a hospital and with a doctor). Of course we were really surprised about it so we decided not to tell anybody. We took him home and tried to think up a name. For some reason I thought Winston was a good idea, but I was having a hard time convincing Micah. I can’t imagine why. I also forgot the part about the baby needing to eat, but despite my negligence he grew to the size of six month old in a matter of days.

I assume if it is a girl, my dreams will change to accommodate her, but seeing as how they are so realistic anyway, maybe not.

While we are on the subject of names . . .

While we are on the subject of names . . .

I recently asked Micah to make a list of names he would consider for our child. Although we have been waiting to find out the gender and for me to get my grad school applications submitted before we really start discussing it, I thought we should at least get something to work with. I was really looking forward to this part of being pregnant, but for some reason I’m having a hard time even thinking about it anymore.

Perhaps Micah’s list is part of the reason why:
This is what we have to work with? This is where we are starting on our road to finding the perfect name for our eldest child? My brain hurts just looking at it.

Of course, this is coming from the same man that thinks that 1 blue otter pop + 1 green otter pop = dinner.


Happy Birthday Lizzie!!

Happy Birthday Lizzie!!

I just thought I would take advantage of the fact that I can now submit blog posts as my individual self and wish my beautiful wife a very happy birthday. And as one of my birthday presents to her I would like to tell everybody who reads this crazy site of ours a little secret about Liz:

Liz doesn’t like the name Liz!

The name originated from a class that she was in as a kid that contained three Elizabeths. The teacher did not want to bother with identity confusion and thus assigned the shortening of Liz to our Elizabeth. And, as old habits are hard to break, it has stuck until this day. Liz has told me on multiple occasions that she would rather change her known name to Lizzie or just Elizabeth, but it is such a hard task that we have just given up.

So, this may or may not catch on, but I think we should all try and dispatch the old title of Liz and sub in a new, more Lizzieish name in its place. It may be hard at first, but we will get used to it.

And, Liz (or should I say Lizzie) if you hate this idea and it is the worst birthday present you could conceive of then please go ahead and delete this post. If not, I feel free to expand on any details I missed.

Thanks everybody, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY LIZZIE!!!!