Monday, June 8, 2009


Have you all missed me dearly?
I've missed you! We had computer problems all last week, only for my brilliant husband to discover that we needed a new router. Now, all is great. But it is hard to be without a computer all week. No email. No news. No surfing. No blogging. Sniff. So happy to be back.

I spent three blissful days in Salt Lake last week, enjoying the gorgeous weather and speaking at the University of Utah's Especially for Youth. I felt somewhat traitorous walking onto that red campus, but the feeling soon waned. Speaking at EFY is admittedly one of my favorite things to do in the whole world. I feel a bit like Nephi--I wish I was as persuasive a writer as I am a speaker, because then I could express how much I love being there. I LOVE THE YOUTH OF THE CHURCH. They are so amazing and stalwart and good. It is so much work to prepare four talks, and I feel a little pressure to be fabulous because I know why parents send kids to EFY--great gospel experiences. But it is such a high to be in their midst and to have them include you (old, and in this case, quite pregnant) in their enthusiasm and joy. It was my first time at the U (the last two years I spoke back at "home" in Provo), but I loved the Institute and all its technology. These three days started my week out with a bang. Even if I left my cell phone in AZ. (Try living and mothering at a distance without your cell phone for three days. Missed swimming lessons, missed chores, missed work assignments. I didn't realize how dependent I've become . . . .)
But I'm always glad to come home. It's just enough break from the family that I come home ready to be Mom again. Wanting to be Mom again. So why did I get the Delta airplane with the defective mike from the cockpit to the flight attendants? We were delayed on the ground for literally 2 hours, when they finally had us deplane and find a new aircraft. Missed tucking my kids into bed, missed story time. Most importantly, I missed book club! And it was my book, too! Such is life, I suppose.
Otherwise, life is flowing along here at a crazy pace--between lots of swimming and lots of chores, we're weathering the second week of summer well.

Thursday night, Brad and I went to see The Soloist. I enjoyed it. Brad thought it was okay, but it reminded me a lot of the lessons learned in The Glass Castle, which I read a few weeks back. But the real story came after the movie. As we were exiting the theater, Brad pointed out an advertisement that looked like his stepsister. I turned to look at it, and I ran headlong (okay, belly-long) into a gangster-looking twenty-ish Hispanic guy. It was just like in the movies--popcorn flew in the air, belly bounced off belly, and we stopped. Luckily, I shouldn't have judged by his appearance, because he was as nice as he could be about it. As it turns out, he had been looking the opposite direction as well. Even his group of gangsta-looking friends were laughing about the popcorn fountain and bouncing bellies. When will I learn to not judge people? You'd think that after living for three years on the South Side of Chicago, I would have learned by now. Nope. Denser than that.

Epiphany #75--Don't judge books (or gangsters) by their covers.
I'll try to be more diligent in posting now that I have no broken computer as an excuse.

P.S. Tomorrow's the big day! Ultrasound at 1 pm! (Knowing his office, 3 pm.) Look for the update on Gummy Bear here!


  1. Some of my most treasured memories from my youth were attending Youth Conference and EFY. What an amazing experience you had to speak at one!

    Keep us updated on gummy bear, can't wait to share the joy you.


  2. Of course we've missed you!!!
    How cool are you...speaking at EFY? Nice.

    And, I love the belly busting popcorn story! Thanks for sharing.

    Can't wait to her about Gummy Bear!! Hooray!

  3. Jen, I found your blog from natalie's a while a comment you made on Natalie's blog it sounded like you had experienced a loss as well so I went to read your blog a little. I'm so impressed with you and your gorgeous family.

    Then I saw your comment on Natalie's most recent post about my other friend Natalie and got your donation. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!! I then came back to your blog and read about how you were just here in Salt Lake for EFY at the U. My husband and I met as EFY counselors on the U campus in 2006. crazy! :) We obviously LOVE EFY. Too bad they don't let couples be counselors. :) Anyway...just wanted to say thank you and you are a great example to me.

  4. Waahoo the Sanatorium is back! I missed your blog last week, which is a little silly I know-but that's me. Glad you had an amazing time at EFY, can't wait to hear more-or hear a recycled talk in Sac. Mtg. You'll have to be sure and post quickly about the color for your gummy bear!

  5. Yes I missed you! So excited to see what flavor Gummy will be!! I so want to be a "kid" in one of your EFY classes.

    I am not sure how you managed without your cell...we as moms are sooo dependent.

    Talk to you TOMORROW!!

  6. I can't believe you were in Utah and didn't even call me? I could venture up to the U to say hello. NEXT time, let me know, ok?

  7. Speaking at EFY is so cool, only certain people can do that. I had to speak in church last week and thought I was going to die. You are amazing. Did you have four different topics? What were they?

  8. I am so glad that you are back. I missed reading your posts! They picked a perfect speaker for EFY, I know that you were amazing!

    Can hardly wait to hear about your ultrasound!

    Call me about workshop carpooling sometime when you have time! :)

  9. Thinking of you more than usual this morning! Can't wait to hear all about Gummy Bear.

    Also, thanks so much for donating.
    I was hesitant at first to do the post, only because I didn't want anyone to feel pressure. But, I just had to do it...the story touched my heart so deeply.
    Anyway, thanks again!

  10. Hallefreakinluia, you're back. I literally had the phone in my hand to call you and check up on you when i decided to check your blog once more. Sounds like you've been busy and all is well. Can't wait to hear the results of the ultrasound, AND to see you next week when workshop 2 begins.

  11. Its tuesday...waiting, waiting, waiting!!

  12. I just heard girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. I love your blog and I love the way you write and I just love you! I didn't know you spoke at EFY's? or course you do. Cause you are just neat like that. Congrats on the baby! You look fab o!