South Africa is one hot country..

and by hot I mean beautiful, since it really hasn't been very hot at all. I am in Cape Town now, one of the most beautiful places on earth and there is lots of blue sky and sunshine. The temperature is just perfect and I have managed not to fry to a crisp as in tims past. Lapping up every UV soaked moment of it. I am just astounded by how gorgeous this country is and what a variation of scenery. You''ll''ll see...I may have taken a picture or two...

Have not been able to do even a fraction of what hopes to do but some of the biggies which have been covered so far:
1. Lots of time with the fam
2. Ran on the beach with my dad
3. Watched seal body surf
4. Had tea in a palace with my sister
5. Ate really really great seafood
6. Ate many wonderful meals. I find everything is just so....quality here. From the furniture to the food. There is no junk. Even the junk food is quality junk food. I love that.
7. Slept a lot more-even if it is from 5am until 1pm
8. The house we are staying at here has an outdoor shower. (Apart from the ones indoors). It is divine. And a lovely pool too. And the beach. Good times.
9. Incredible views of the city lights, ocean, mountains
10. Passed a very classic looking hijacking scenario this evening. Happily did not stop to participate. We are so streetwise that way.
11. Mom's cooking
12. Litchies and other heavenly fruit in abundance

Still, I can't wait to see my little family again. Even if I will have to blunder through an abysmal blizzard to see their wan little sun deprived faces. Why is it that we do not live here?????
Gird up loins for pictures. Copious pictures when the internet is once more at my bidding.
kiss kiss skatties...
Salani kahle!

Ít's 2:51am in South Africa!!....

and I am going to bed I think! I had a great trip over. Well as great as 26 hours of travel can be. Really it was not bad at all. The most trying part I think, was when I whizzed through customs only to have to wait for about 45 minutes at the baggage carousel for my bag. In the end a little man had to climb down the hole and haul it out. The last bag. As always. Do you know what it feels like to have traveled half way around the world and to know that your family are literally a few feet away waiting for you..and waiting...and waiting. Torture I tell you, I was ready to bag the bags and go au naturel for the rest of the trip. Lucky for everyone that there was that nice little man to climb down the hole then I suppose.

It is surreal to be here...surreal but nice. The fam is cool. The weather is cool. No as This is not good. It has been raining and stuff and I have one long sleeved shirt. It simply will not do.

My older sister Shona and I spent about half an hour this evening gazing at the security camera at what we were quite certain was the form of a man breaking into a car in the driveway. However either he was making very small movements in his endeavours or he was actually a mere shadow of a man because he remained very still. We did consider that he might be some sort of mime burgaler. We gathered several opinions from various less neuorotic family members. They were in favour of the shadow theory. I just now stood on the bathtub listening out the window upon the insistence of Shona that she could hear blood curdling screams. These it was agreed were attributed to a yelping puppy. She is now deeply concerned about the yelping puppy.

Theis evening when we weren't locking security gates and checking cameras and turning on alarms we had a mock Christmas Eve dinner and present opening fest. Pictures to come of course. It was brilliant. Just like old times..well sort of. People do tend to grow and stuff, it's not that we all got fat I am just loathe to use that ugly A word you know...age...aging and other derivatives thereof that come to mind when you see a teenager at church who you knew as an infant, and you realise you are old enough to be one of those people who say, "Oh my, when I last saw you, you were just a baby" and they smile politely and wait for you to stop talking so they can ask their mom for cash or the car keys or whatever.

I have also spent a good portion of the visit trying to persuade my mother that I am not anoerexic (the fact that I eat ...everything...with gusto does not seem to convince her.) That's been some good times. She has also not held back on informing me how haggard she thinks I look. (Again with the A word)

Since this is not so much within my power to change mom...ummm..thanks for the input? The rest of the family have been backing her up to varying degrees while my younger of sister of similar weight yet more endowed with youthful collagen to plump out her cheeks, stands by completely unharrassed. But really, it's so nice that they care. :I

'Despite all this, it has been wonderful, I have such a fun, funny family. We laugh like mad. And they make everything so beautiful. It is lovely to be in a clean serene beautiful home with fresh roses everywhere and no clutter.

That said, I miss my little munchkins. They stopped irritating me before I left unfortunately. I miss Aaron too but by all accounts they are getting along famously without me, and tell me that they hope I am having lots of fun and they are too, so I do not feel too guilty. I have the best little family ever, how sweet are they? Really.

Anyway I should sleep sometime I suppose. I will have more of South Africa to report tomorrow when I actually venture beyond the security gates to somewhere other then church. Stay tuned-I can't guarantee my computer will not be stolen but I will do my best to update semi-regularly.


Kirsty! What a nice surprise to see a blog posting while you're on the road. I, too, get a little paranoid when I'm in SA (especially JHB)... the security gadgets are an ever-present reminder of the dangers. Every time I go back, the gadgets have become a little fancier and I wonder if that's because the "bad guys" have become more adept at bypassing them. When I was there in 2004, I stayed with a friend who had some sort of invisible (or maybe it was laser) beam aimed across the bedroom windows, and an alarm would sound if something (like an intruder trying to climb in) passed through the beam. It was like those beams you see protecting an object of art in a museum in a movie. They're probably old school now! Enjoy your adventures inside and beyond the gates!

Say hi to Parkview for me! Hope the weather cheers up a bit.

Awww...I'm glad you got there safe and sound! Sounds like you are having a wonderful time...nagging included. Can't wait to see some pictures...get on it, woman!!

Glad you got there safely!

At 1:00 today I did 30 minutes of strength training, in honor of yor absence. We miss you here!!!

Tomorrah tomorrah I'm leaving's only a day away.........

Quick! Somebody clone me!!!


Did I mention I lost my planner? It was last seen 2 nights ago at Rite Aid where I was shopping from the list in it. Now that list and many other lists, contact numbers and dates not to mention a really lovely (new) planner I loved and found after much searching for just the perfect one, and a very nice new pen from my husband are no longer. At a time of chaos such as this, this is Not. Good.

Me-Planner=More Insane then usual.

Other than all that...isn't it exciting??! Today it is snowing quite a lot. Not tomorrow but the next day I will wake up to little birdies chirping and big Hadedahs ha-dee-dah'ing, lots of sunlight and maybe even a swim. Aaahhhhhhh

One more thing though, there is a psychological phenomenon whereby people start picking fights and alienating themselves from people whom they really like or love when there is an impending separation. I am famous for this. Today I wondered if the fact that my kids are irritating me like soooo sooo SUPER MUCH could be attributed to this coping strategy? Or is it just because they are so incredibly painful and have a radar for when I am most busy and distracted whereby they contrive ways in which to torture me.

Gracie's latest is having me drop everything first thing in the morning in order to scrapbook with her. I do not find scrapbooking relaxing at the best of times but since she has long thought that scrapbooking would be tantamount to nirvana, I got her a scrapbook and many many pink supplies and had a special evening of doing this with her after which I took her out for hot chocolate. This was in lieu of being here for her birthday. Fine. Great. It was delightful. For one evening. Except no, now she thinks it should be a daily activity. Every Day. And this week being what it is, my tolerance for scrapbooking is at an all time low. Anyway I have just had the audacity of telling her that it would have to wait til this evening or she would be late for her playdate and she is upstairs weeping copiously, as if I had sent her up there with a magical spinning wheel with which she was required to spin straw into gold, after which she would prick her finger and fall into an enchanted sleep for 100 years. Is it wrong that I just had a pang of envy for Sleeping Beauty's parents?

Quick! Somebody Clone Me!!!!!


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Have fun with your family!!!

And I do think that is a coping strategy...I know I've employed it before, but it usually ends up making me sadder than leaving.

Enjoy your trip and you family

To all the Austen fans who may read this...

I thought you should know.


AAAHHH looks like I've got some TV to watch then. Huh? Too bad I missed the first one.

I'd heard rumors of this, but also didn't catch on in time to see the first one during the regular time slot. It is replaying 3 am tomorrow (tonight) for me, so I'm going to record it. I saw you can print out a .pdf schedule of it from the website. How funny--I think they know there are some serious fans out there. Thanks for the link!

I *love* Jane Austen and I'm watching this series as well. I own the BBC version of Pride & Prejudice, which is the gold standard of Austen in my opinion. I knew that you and I are friends for a reason.

Glad to be of assistance ;) I missed the first one too and am not sure if Aaron will remember to tape the ones that I am away for, or that I will remember to remind him so I'm counting on my friends!!
Amy did you read about our annual P & P Marathon viewing party?? I think we all feel the same way about it being the gold standard ;)

Oh and a P.S rergarding the laundry...

that I could not remember doing? That's because Aaron has been. Even though he is not allowed to. I suppose I will let it pass.

Oh my word....

I just had a bit of time to read through the last few entries and...WOW I am boring. Holy Hannah! Painfully so! It's all the long rambling same! All the blah blah blah about my "stress". So lame. Ok firstly my so called stress is really quite pathetic. There are people in life trying to find a place to sleep each night (Did you see The Pursuit of Happyness?-omigosh if not- don't! It scarred me for life. Well do, if you aren't inclined to help less fortunate people, but if you are in any way neurotic you should not.)

ANYWAY what with all the boring lame whining If I weren't me I would totally avoid me! Man! How do you people keep reading? (I checked the stats, apparently you are still reading-what is up with that? But hey, thanks!)

BUT! No longer! Listen to this! I have completed the draft of my final final paper. I don't plan to amend it much so I consider it practically done. I have also completed all the rest of the work for the class-three weeks ahead of time-I KNOW! Incredible!( Ironically I am girding up my loins to ask my prof if it is ok if I submit it all this early.) AND! I am starting to see the light with Young Women. We have the issues I was most stressed (there's that lame word again) about covered I believe,and I think it's going to be OK (except when it isn't).

I'm chill baby! It's weird. I must be missing something! Oh. My .Gosh. Seriously, I just remembered as I wrote this that I am missing a huge something. I have to prepare a lesson for tomorrow and make some handouts and assemble some leadership binders. Ha! I knew it was too good to be true, free time-it was eerie for a second there and was starting to freak me out. And you thought I might actually write about something!

Next time: SHOES! I have become enamoured of shoes the last year or so. Perhaps I will even model them and have Aaron take photos for all the fetishists to enjoy. (Eeuw-btw I learned about why a foot fetishist is that way reading a psychology book recently. Good to know). Anyway you never know. Maybe next time I really will have something less lame to report. So best you tune in.

I am still stunned that anyone reads this. SO boring. Wow.

This time next week: I am coming in for landing at Joburg International and (hopefully) my family is waiting at the airport for me. ALL my siblings. ALL. So incredible.


I enjoy every word of your posts, Kirsty, so don't go changing what you write about too much! I put photos of diaper wipes in my blog--talk about boring. So exciting about your trip! Say "hi" to the old stomping grounds for me, will you? I'll miss your posts while you're gone, but their absence will remind me that you're having a fabulous trip and a well-deserved break.
PS. Thanks for the bib suggestions. I was going to try exactly what you suggested: a vinyl sandwich (yum!)... I think I'll make one like that and throw it in the washer to see how it does. But yep, that would make it more sightly (un-unsightly?) and still help with the moisture.

Did you see that? ONE WEEK!!!!....

This time next week I will be soaring through the air en route to gay Paris. It's not as glam as it sounds though as I will be confined to the airport in gay Paris. But then I will be en route to South Africa and going to South Africa is not to be sneezed at.

In preparation for all this glamorous jet setting, It has been an insane week. I have slept very little (but that's not new) and worked very much. I have been determined to finish up my last class (which is designed to be completed in 5 weeks at a very accelerated rate) one week. Good times!

I have also been doing about a milliongajillion hours of work for the Young Women so that I can feel as if life will go on without me when I am in gay Paris and sunny SA. (Not that I'm neurotic or a control freak or anything...) I would say that I have done probably the amount of work for YW that one would generally do in 6 one week. Jolly good times! My counselor and secretary have been loving it too.

I asked Aaron this evening if he thought I enjoyed stress. I have been pondering this today as I have a casual friend who I see at the gym quite regularly and every time she sees me lately her eyes get all big and she says, "Oh Kirsty you are thinner. Are you still so busy?" And every time I say, "..umm..well yes I guess I am". (Although generally I am not thinner every time she sees me). Then she will ask me a little about what is keeping me so busy and when I reply her eyes get even wider and in all sincerity she says, "you are crazy". And I am starting to wonder if maybe I am. I look at other people's lives and they seem quite calm. I think I do try to fit unrealistic amounts of activity into a given day. I believe that this is a genetic problem. My mom is a carrier and a sufferer of this condition and my sister makes me look like a sloth.

I think the problem extends to my perception of time. I perceive any day as very elastic, time-wise. I think I subconsciously expect that the time will expand to fit the tasks available rather then the other way around. It generally turns out that it does, more or less, in that all the big jobs get done, you know the kind of things you write in your planner-those are generally checked off, but when people say to me, "I have no idea how you get it all done" the truth really, is that I don't.

My house is a mess. I know I have been doing laundry because we continue to have clean underwear, although I have no recollection of actually doing laundry (I also often have no recollection of driving home when I pull up outside my house).but it is by no means anywhere near up to date. My house is never all clean, all at the same time. And the thing is. that for the last month or so I absolutely do not care about this in the least little bit. Ok well maybe I do a little bit but not nearly as much as usual. My Christmas tree is still up-as are all the decorations. It is quite scandalous. Tomorrow is the 12th. It will come down tomorrow. It must. Anything past the 12th and I may as well leave the lights up until next year and we don't do that in our family

I think I also perceive my energy to be limitless. And I must say, I do seem to require less sleep then most people I know, however a reality check always arrives at some point. Yesterday as I was running I was wondering why it was soooo haaaaaaard. Then today again, my run was like moving through molasses, and when I got done I had the overwhelming urge to lie on a weight bench and take a nap. When I analyzed this urge I realized that I have not slept more then 4 or so hours for the last week. And even then, it was not good quality sleep.

Today after dropping Gracie off at school Finny and I were both melting down. I had planned to take him to do something fun as he only goes back to school on Monday and has not been enjoying his time sans siblings but on the way home, something in me snapped. Last night I read about the psychological/biological drives that kick in when we are lacking in something essential like food or sleep and today I experienced the practical. I informed Finny that plans had changed and we were going home and mommy was going to have a rest. This had definitely not been in my plan, even 5 minutes before, but suddenly I did not really care about my plan. I had hit the wall. Hard. I knew that Finny was in need of crashing too (as he was responsible for my 4 hours of sleep lacking in quality) so I did not feel too guilty when I flopped down on the bed, invited him to cuddle down next to me, and turned on the Disney channel. At one point he asked for a banana and I told him to go and get one. He informed me that he was just a little guy and could not get a banana himself. I told him that happily, he could, as the bananas remained at floor level since I had also not managed to put away the groceries (and this is one domestic chore that I never procrastinate under normal circumstances). He continued to object vigorously. I tried to motivate by mumbling to him that he could do it if only he believed in himself-"be like Kim Possible!" I urged with as much enthusiasm as one can muster as one drifts into the second stage of sleep. Somewhere in the background of my mind I heard him wailing...then the wailing got fainter, yet it continued, I could not even feel emotion about this wailing, it was totally out of my control it seemed. Then the wailing noise swelled again as Finny ascended the stairs, and climbed onto the bed next to me, face streaming with tears, holding a... banana! Triumphant! At this point I roused myself sufficiently to praise him and dub him Finn Possible. He found this very amusing and chuckled through his tears, inhaled the banana and passed out next to me. And there we both lay until the big kids arrrived home from school.

No matter how driven we may be, or how busy or how determined we are that we are too busy (or too big) to take naps...sometimes a girl (and a boy) just needs a nap. And when a girl gets gets to nap next to a soft sweet smelling warm almost-baby boy, a nap is nothing less then...delicious.

So in answer to my original question, as Aaron said, I don't think I like stress. I just like to do everything that I would like to do. And then I can't help but do it alllll the way. But it's not like I go after stress for the thrill of it.

In fact this is why I am stressing so hard right now so that I can get it all done by the end of this weekend and enjoy a stress free week with my family before I leave. (As if!-but you've got to have dreams)

I do concede that I love to be busy and I am so grateful for all the things in my life that give me the opportunity to be. Being busy makes me feel alive and when I am so busy that I feel a bit dead..well then that mid-day nap is just that much more yummy.


Maybe I should look into that being busy thingy.

That nap sounds so dreamy. And so does the fact that you have three kids that can walk themselves home from school so you don't have to worry about waking yourself up from said nap.

You don't bring me flowers anymore...oh, wait!

Last week I was having a bad day (imagine!) and when Aaron called from work I vented somewhat regarding this fact. I'm not sure if any of the venting was coherent because all I remember was feeling blurry and slighly hyperventilatey as I sat hunched over my printer waiting for it to PRINT STUFF ALREADYand thinking about the gajillion other things I was supposed to be doing, like..3 hours ago. To summarize I was feeling overwhelmed and under-appreciated (not by Aaron but rather the world at large).

Anyway I'm fairly confident that I was not a kind and concerned wife during this phone call, and there is a good chance that I did not even ask him how his day was going. Or maybe I did, and he told me that it was awful and I said, "well that's good..omigosh you would not BELIEVE my day......". Although that probably did not happen because Aaron would never categorize a day as "awful " and if he did, I would know that the Apocalypse had occurred and I just hadn't heard about it yet. In which case I would just drop dead to save myself the hassle of all the chaos and screaming and other Apocalyptic stuff), before asking him for any details or offering any comfort. Even then, I can't imagine him describing a day as awful. Even on the Apocalypse Day he'd probably be all, "'s kind of...interesting out there. But enough about me, how are you?? ".

ANYWAY a little while after our one-sided conversation, I was talking to my friend and neighbor Tiffany at my front door (she too was a recipient of my stressy tirade)-oh lucky Tiffany!) when up pulled the florist delivery van. And out walked the delivery man, up my path bearing these:


Aren't they purty? It was a snowy freezing day and they were so fresh and colourful.


He does this quite often actually, even though I am sure it costs way too much and he probably dies a little inside as he give his credit card number and looks into selling plasma, but it feels really good to know that he thinks I am worth investing in something that will die pretty soon but will make me smile right now.

Here's what he has given me on some of the other bad days.With Aaron around it's kind of tempting to have a bad day. I don't deserve him but I do so love him. (He brings me cheesecake too. Not that I'm gloating.)



What a difference a day (or two) makes...

The kids are on Winter break. This is what we did a couple of days ago


Four little monkeys sliding on a sled..


One fell off, got snow on his head!

Mama called "hey my turn now!", which made the sled go FAST


Even though we're freezing cold the snow is such a blast.





And this is what we did today! (With apologies to the Beatles) (Oh c'mon go ahead and click (open in a new window) and listen while you look- I guarantee the background music will make you smile :) These images are way cuter then the ones on youtube though.


Here comes the sun...


and I'll say it's all right


Little darling..the smile's returning to the faces..


Little darling it seems like years since it's been here..

Img_7650 it comes....


Little darling, I feel like ice is slowly melting


Little darling it seems like years since it's been clear


Little's been a (short) cold lonely winter..


little darling it seems like years since it's been here..


Sun! Here comes the sun! Little darling...


Sun here comes the sun...and I'll say...


It's all right! Da loodle la loodle la loodle la leee....


One day of Spring in the dead of winter=A gift. :)


Very cute :) So jealous of your oh so near SUMMER though! XO

Watching along with the song definitely makes it feel like a joyful spring day. Love the pix.

By the way, I was talking to my SIL yesterday who said that she reads your blog all the time and she loves how entertaining you are.

Great, wonderful, striking pictures! Really, they are great! And the Beatles don't own their music anymore, so you can do whatever you want to their lyrics. But you might have to answer to Michael Jackson, who now holds the rights.

I loved walking to campus today with no coat. I did my part in jinxing winter by buying a sub-zero coat from Land's End. Here's hoping...

Thanks for the gift of spring! I'm ready for all this snow to go away. Love the pics of the kids!

Another incentive to hit the gym...

January 04, 2008



This must be why people still but up with me. Hee hee!

Play that funky music white boy..

Benjamin as Napoleon Dynamite



This is awesome! He pulls it off perfectly! Thanks for the laugh.

A new day has come...

Welcome 2008. I love the number 8. It has always been my "lucky" number. I got married on May 18th even though it was a Thursday. I actually didn't plan that-things turn out weird when you are planning a wedding in Idaho. But still, it's cool it worked out that way.

Now that Christmas and New Year celebrations are over, I can allow my brain to deal with the next event at hand. There are several but most noteably as you may have gleaned from my newly acquired ticker (yes I have become the obnoxious ticker lady who gloats about her forthcoming trip to sunny shores in the dead of winter-ha!), I will be going to South Africa pretty soon.

I have no idea how I will possibly get all I need to get done accomplished before then, but this does not stop me from being stomach fluttery excited every time I think of it. I will be leaving on the 18th. You've got to love the 8.

We rang the New Year in very noisily last night. It was so much fun.

I just love me a Mormon party!!!


This is the brooding artsy sultry picture I took of Nathan and Amy. Sexay. He is nursing a sparkling grape juice btw.


Nathan coached us on how to look good in a photo for this one. He is fully qualified to do so, having read an article on the subject on the yahoo homepage just before Christmas. Despite his expert styling I fear it is not my most flattering shot but the other ladies are glowing. I am pursing my lips in a fervent attempt not to laugh in an unattractive manner.


Yet another Nathan coached picture attempt. He felt the flip would enhance my appearance


However I am unable to stop laughing long enough to stand up and "look good".



Rocket scientist at work. Aaron and his colleague/friend Edgar work on a complex engineering dilemma.


The kids all stayed up til after midnight apart from Finny and Tato who stayed up til about 11:30pm and then conked..hard. All the children were good fun today. Here they are all cute and cozy.


Amy and I bust out some wicked cool 80's dance moves, while Julie looks on in great admiration


A rousing game of Apples to Apples


Muss Cyndi, the kiddy whisperer holds court.


A group picture just before midnight. Everything is more fun whilst wearing a random hat, (or in Nathan's case, tights) on your head. I like to close my eyes for pictures.


The obligatory beating on tin object with spoon at midnight tradition. Proudly brought all the way from South Africa, where they have metal poles rather then wood to beat on.


Why the world should be relieved that I do not drink.


So sad we couldn't be there and had to sit at home and blog instead. Oh yeah, and stay up with a sick child who refused to go to bed. But it was New Year's Eve right?? Caroline can partay like the rest of 'em.

Also, I'm not yet convinced that Nathan's "sparkling grape juice" is what you have claimed it to be.

I am with you re: alcohol taking the fun out of parties. Your new year's eve looks like it was a whole bunch of fun! I got to pick J up from the airport at 12:45 am, when his delayed flight came in (and then wait for the luggage). I love the head-banging photo of you. I for one do not mind the countdown ticker--I had kept on wondering when you were going to go. Now I know.