Showing posts from 2011

7 Quick Takes - December 31, 2011 - Saturday edition

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Wow, my last Quick Takes of the year. We have no wild and crazy plans for NYE; Collin is doing overtime today (8am-5pm), so as soon as he's done we're going to head out to Golden Corral (my dad's request) for supper, come back home, put the kids to bed, and watch a movie. Or maybe play Apples to Apples. I picked up a bottle of Wilson Creek Peach Bellini sparkling wine with which to toast the New Year (assuming I make it to midnight!).

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Gabriel is doing great - he is 9lbs and still growing! - although we had a scare with possible pneumonia this week. He had his first chest x-ray, poor kid, and his first breathing treatment. We had a couple of rough nights Thankfully he's doing much better and there's no sign of pneumonia.

He is being baptized tomorrow after the 11am Mass! Hooray! I'll try to update with pics ASAP.

--- 3 ---
Christmas was lovely, although my house looks like a toy store exploded. The kids got spoiled rotten. Elanor got her long-…

Logic: You're doing it wrong

Netflix has been my friend this maternity leave, and I'm catching up on one of my favorite shows, Law and Order: SVU.

Love the show. Dislike the boneheaded logic spouted in some episodes, such as "Mask" (Season 12, episode 13). Here's a choice quote:

"The Catholic Church considers IVF to be a sin. I called the Pope and invited him to come and meet some of our babies. So far, no response." - doctor at a "reproductive services" clinic that does IVF and experiments on embryos

Her logic, simplified:

Babies are good. IVF produces babies. Therefore, IVF is good.
Let's apply that logic elsewhere:

Babies are good. Acts of rape sometimes produce babies. Therefore, rape is good.

Huh? You mean that doesn't work? Rape is still bad and immoral even though the children who are the result of acts of rape are not?


Merry Christmas!

A Christmas Carol
by G.K.Chesterton

The Christ-child lay on Mary's lap,
His hair was like a light.
(O weary, weary were the world,
But here is all aright.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary's breast
His hair was like a star.
(O stern and cunning are the kings,
But here the true hearts are.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary's heart,
His hair was like a fire.
(O weary, weary is the world,
But here the world's desire.)

The Christ-child stood on Mary's knee,
His hair was like a crown,
And all the flowers looked up at Him,
And all the stars looked down

'A Christmas Carol' poem


The shepherds went their hasty way,
And found the lowly stable-shed
Where the Virgin-Mother lay:
And now they checked their eager tread,
For to the Babe, that at her bosom clung,
A Mother's song the Virgin-Mother sung.


They told her how a glorious light,
Streaming from a heavenly throng.
Around them shone, suspending night!
While sweeter than a mother's song,
Blest Angels herald…

Possessive last names make the Baby Jesus cry

A Christmas card PSA from your friendly neighborhood grammar/punctuation freak:

When signing your Christmas card/letter (or return address labels), do not sign them like so:

Merry Christmas from the Wahlund's!

If your intention is to send Christmas greetings on behalf of your entire family, then you want your last name to be plural, not possessive. For example:

Merry Christmas from the Wahlunds! means there is more than one Wahlund wishing you a Merry Christmas.

The possessive form, on the other hand, indicates that something belonging to the Wahlund family is wishing you a Merry Christmas. Merry Christmas from the Wahlund's... what? The Wahlund's cat? The Wahlund's dog? The Wahlund's thermonuclear bomb facility? 

If your last name ends with an 's' or 'z', then your best bet is to use a workaround such as, "Merry Christmas from the Glass family!" Or you could add an -es. But for the love of all that is holy and innocent, do not use an apost…

Lazy 7 Quick Takes - December 9, 2011








Gabriel's birth story - November 2011

The birth story of Gabriel Keith
11/26/11 (37w1d), 6:09am MST
Weight: 7lbs, 9oz; Length: 18.5 in.

I discovered a surefire way to induce labor - just cook a Thanksgiving dinner for nine people and poof! You'll go into labor the next day. At least, that's what worked for me...

I spent most of Thanksgiving (36w6d pregnant) on my feet, roasting a turkey for the first time, concocting homemade stuffing, and making various side dishes. I did try to get off my feet whenever possible, but it was still an extremely busy day. I was wiped out by 6pm and in bed and asleep by 8pm.

The next morning, I woke up at 4:45am and couldn't get back to sleep. I decided to go downstairs and surf the Internet for a while. I ended up finding a fantastic Black Friday deal on a new pre-lit Christmas tree at ($130 tree for $40, plus free shipping) so I (foolishly) went upstairs to wake up Collin and ask if we could buy it. He did not take kindly to being woken up that early on one of his ra…

For unto us a child was born

It's a boy! Gabriel Keith was born at 6:09am AZ time (37w1d), 7lbs 9oz, 18.5 in long.

7 Quick Takes Friday - November 25, 2011

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We had a lovely Thanksgiving. I roasted a turkey for the very first time, and it turned out well. I also made homemade stuffing, sweet potato casserole, green beans, homemade rolls, and mulled wine. Collin's grandparents, sister-in-law, and niece came over, and after stuffing ourselves we lit the firepit and stayed outside visiting while the kids played. (Thank goodness I had help with the clean-up, because I was wiped out! I went to bed around 8pm.)

--- 2 ---
I do not, as a rule, participate in the Black Friday madness. No money savings is worth being trampled. I woke up at 5am this morning and couldn't sleep, though, so I started aimlessly surfing the Internet and stumbled across a 7-ft. pre-lit Christmas tree at for $39.99 (originally $129.99)! As the top tier of our current (secondhand) Christmas tree didn't work last year, this sale was appealing, so I went so far as to wake up Collin to ask his opinion. He was grumpy but after a long discussion he…

7 Quick Takes Friday - November 18, 2011

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36 weeks today! We're heading into the home stretch. I had an appointment yesterday; everything looks great. I had the GBS test and the NP attempted to check my cervix, but it was so high up that she decided not to try. So, seems as though Baby is content to stay where s/he is for now. :)

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I went to a blogger meet-up last weekend!

From L to R: Me, Alison, Danya, and Leila. We had lunch at the Arcadia Cafe (yum!) and gabbed for hours. So rejuvenating! HUGE thanks to Kara who watched Violet for me (Collin was overloaded with homework and needed a toddler-free day) so I could go.

--- 3 ---
I start working from home November 28, thank goodness. I got everything squared away with paperwork and etc. this week. The commute is really getting difficult.

--- 4 ---
We are hosting Thanksgiving at our house this year! Eep! Have I mentioned I've never roasted a turkey before? I'm thinking of using this recipe, but I'm not sure. Is it important to have stuffing act…

Broken Fortress giveaway week!

Edit 11/16/11 - check out today's giveaway featuring a gift certificate to Hand Knit by Cara. I am in love with this Christmas stocking!

The very talented Allison over at A Broken Fortress is hosting a Holiday Giveaway week! Today's giveaway features items from her wonderful Etsy shop Lila's Locker. Check it out!

7 Quick Takes Friday - November 11, 2011

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Thank you to our Veterans! I'm very proud of the two servicemen in my family. This (middle) is my cousin, Sgt. Adam Walsvik, who serves with the 188th Engineer Company in the North Dakota National Guard. He's currently serving in Afghanistan. Here's an article about an award that Adam won last year. (Incidentally, I had no idea my cousin knew General Hammond. LOL!)

This is my uncle, Command Sgt. Maj. Joel Walsvik (he is also Adam's uncle). I am his namesake (I was named after him and my great-grandmother Anna). He's also with the North Dakota National Guard, and has served several tours of duty in Iraq and one in Kosovo.

Here's an article about some awards he recently bestowed to fellow ND National Guard soldiers.

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Speaking of the North Dakota National Guard, I read this blurb at the bottom of one of the above articles: Since the 2001 terrorist attacks on America, the North Dakota National Guard has mobilized more than 3,500 Soldiers and m…

My three blondies


7 Quick Takes Friday - November 4, 2011

1. I turned 31 yesterday! Other than that, it was an average day. I went to work, got off at 1pm, prayed at the abortion clinic for an hour, did some browsing at the St. Vincent de Paul store (I found a Spiderman coat in William's size for $1.29! Woohoo!), drove home, picked up the kids, took them to Elly's T-ball practice, and then went home. (Whew!)

2. However, I took today off of work, and Collin already has the day off. We went to my OB appointment together, then out for brunch, and we're going to go see Courageous.

3. My OB appt went well. Baby's still head down and has a heart rate of 140. I mentioned the near-constant back pain, and Dr. N recommended a chiropractor he knows who works with a lot of pregnant women, so I might try that. He also recommended a support belt.

4. When I was at the St. Vincent de Paul store yesterday, I handed my debit card and ID to the cashier. He looked at my ID, looked at me, looked at my ID, looked at me. I thought he was going to …

7 Quick Takes Friday - October 28, 2011

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Elanor had her first T-ball practice yesterday. It went surprisingly well. I was a little apprehensive beforehand because she's never participated in any kind of organized sport before, but she was excited, enthusiastic and did a really good job of following the coach's directions. I was also afraid that she'd inherited her parents' complete lack of anything resembling athletic ability, but she managed to hit and catch decently enough for a 6-year-old. Maybe the complete lack of coordination has skipped a generation. :P

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Remember how I said last week that I wanted to get her a pink glove? Well, call me Mother of the Year, because it suddenly occurred to me on Tuesday that my daughter, like her mother, is left-handed, and thus she needs a glove to wear on her right hand. Of course, there is not a single place in Phoenix (that I could find) that carried a right-handed pink T-ball glove. I would have ordered the dang thing online weeks ago had I remembered…

7 Quick Takes Friday - October 21, 2011

--- 1 --- Baby update: I had an appointment yesterday and everything looks good. His/her heartbeat was 145bpm, my bp was good, and weight is stable (actually, I've lost two pounds since my last appointment and am still about 5-6 pounds below my pre-pregnancy weight). I'm measuring right on target, which was surprising to me given that I feel like Shamu. The doctor thinks I'm just carrying this baby differently than the others, which is why I feel so big compared to past pregnancies. I also got a flu shot. Ow. My arm still hurts. I guess it beats getting influenza, though. --- 2 --- Well, here it is, October 21 and the world didn't end. Poor Harold Camping. Wonder what spin he'll come up with this time to excuse his invalid prediction to his followers? --- 3 --- We had a parent-teacher conference with Elanor's regular classroom teacher and special education instructor today. Bottom line is that she's making progress, albeit slowly. We're consideri…

Our Leap of Faith

October 17 marked the three-year anniversary of our arrival in Arizona, and I realized that I'd never blogged about what led us here.
In the fall of 2008, my husband and I faced a difficult decision. The recession had detrimentally affected both of our jobs. At the time, I was part of a dedicated team at my work serving a specific client - Lehman Brothers. Collin was working part-time in the evenings for a local ISP and going to college full-time as well. 
Lehman Brothers imploded, and I ended up taking a cut in pay and slightly reduced hours. Around the same time, Collin's employers informed him that they were eliminating all part-time positions in a few months and going to full-time positions only. As he was attending college full-time, there was no way he could accept without dropping out of school (nor did he want to accept; it was a decent job to work while in school, but not a job he wanted to do full-time).  
However, school was not going well for him (calculus was pr…

What's Wrong with this Picture?

A (very liberal) Facebook friend posted the following to her wall earlier today:

I commented that the initial assertion in the graphic (specifically, "The House just passed a bill that will let a hospital refuse a woman emergency abortion care even if she will die without it") was a blatant lie, offered a link demonstrating step-by-step how it is a lie, and asked her to please not post pictures that propogate lies.

The response by her and her liberal cronies, in a nutshell?

"It's not a lie! The Protect Life Act doesn't create jobs, therefore the graphic doesn't lie!"

I sometimes wonder why I even try.

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Day

Today, October 15, is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Day.

Please light a candle in memory of your own lost little ones, and/or in memory of those who have lost babies, either before birth or within the first year after birth.

I've lost two children to miscarriage, Noel (December 2006) and Chris (March 2009); I think about them every day.

7 Quick Takes Friday - October 14, 2011 - Haiku Edition

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New iPhone 4S is  waiting for me at home.  4pm, come soon! 
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The kids watch Star Wars  over and over again. Love this new obsession. 
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I'm 31 weeks.  Jeez, was I this big before?  My belly is huge. 
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My new goal in life:  To win a Bubble onesie.  Please, Leila Miller?? ;) 
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Prayed outside clinic  yesterday afternoon for  40 Days for Life
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Pumpkin spice lattes  are so very, very good. I must get one soon 
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 Plans for tomorrow:  Sleep in, do laundry, fix bikes.  Or maybe just sleep. 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes Friday - October 7, 2011

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30 weeks today! Baby W. has been moving around and kicking like crazy lately. I think s/he's had hiccups a few times, too.

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You know how I said last week that I was hoping things would settle down this week? Well, they did to a certain degree, but it looks like the next two weeks are going to be difficult. Thanks to the release of iCloud, Collin has to work mandatory overtime for the next two weeks in addition to being in the final weeks of his most challenging college course to date. I think he's going to emerge from his office for meals, bathroom breaks, and the occasional nap, but that's about it. *sigh*

--- 3 ---
Speaking of Apple, Steve Jobs will be missed. He was a brilliant man who impacted several different entire industries -- and his company treats their employees quite well to boot. Prayers for his soul, and for his family in their time of grief.

--- 4 ---
Speaking of Apple once again, Collin ordered my birthday/Christmas present this morning (a …

7 Quick Takes Friday - September 30, 2011

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It's been one of those weeks. I have a huge project due at work that I've been frantically working on this week, putting in many extra hours; Collin's in the midst of a particularly challenging college class that's requiring HIM to put in many extra hours, our van got a flat tire, Violet's teething and ran a high fever yesterday, so couldn't go to daycare (I managed to work from home and still put in 13 hours while caring for her), and my doctor's office told me I was anemic and needed iron supplements. I'm really hoping things will marginally calm down once this week is over.

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Two pieces of good news this week, though: we asked two of our close friends (the couple who run the marriage prep program at our parish) to be Baby W.'s godparents, and they said they'd be honored. I'm so happy they said yes.

My father e-mailed me to let me know he bought his plane tickets for Christmas -- he'll be here from December 24 to Janu…

Prayer Buddy Reveal

I signed up to be a Prayer Buddy for the first time last month, and since then I've been blessed to pray for Tess from The Lighthouse. Tess, I tried to pray for you every day -- sometimes pregnancy brain interfered and I forgot, but I think I remembered most days. :)

Happy Feast of the Archangels!

A Response to Lisa Graas Re: "The Moral to this Story"

Lisa made a number of unkind, uncharitable, and outright untrue accusations toward me in her most recent blog post. Given that she turned comments off, I’m unable to respond at her blog so I will have to do so here in hopes that anyone who reads her unjust accusations will also find my rebuttal to them.

1. “If I were to now go and kill myself it would not be because of ‘Bipolarphobia’ on the part of Joann [sic]  for demonizing me based on my disorder, though she did do that.”

Apparently, Lisa’s definition of “dehumanizing” someone with Bipolar disorder is to do the following:

State that your husband (of 10 years and counting) has Bipolar Disorder.
State that, based on the fact above, you have learned to recognize the signs of when someone’s meds may be out of whack and may need adjusting.
State that you have seen signs of increased paranoia and excessive self-recrimination based on perceived insults in someone’s comments (see Lisa’s comment from September 26, 2011 at 1:22 am on this pos…