Tuesday, June 30, 2009

It's about time

I can be really indecisive sometimes. Especially when it involves spending money. I don't want to buy something that is low quality, but I hate to spend a lot of money. (According to the Definitions of Rachel "a lot of money" means anything that has to be bought with money from my savings account).

Can  you see the dilemma? 

At our house, picking out dining chairs has been an eleven year process. I saw some chairs that I liked in a Pottery Barn catalogue once, but they were $99. Too much for our budget. Then I saw them at K-Mart for $39. I almost got them one day, but I couldn't bring myself to spend the money. 

Time passed. Our family grew. We used rust, gold, and avocado chairs that family members and neighbors couldn't stand to look at anymore. Seating for six. Six ways. 

I decided it was time to buy the chairs. A slight problem: a company called Emeco had sued K-Mart and Pottery Barn for using their chair design. So they were no longer available there. But, I could get the Emeco brand. Only, the price for the Emeco chairs was $415. Apparently these chairs, the Emeco Navy Chair, is a style icon that has been around since 1944 when they were commissioned by the US Navy.

Still. I laughed out loud. And then I was mad for a couple of years. 415 dollars. 415 dollars! I really didn't think that an aluminum chair was worth $415. Would you pay that much for this chair?

I just couldn't do it. But, I also couldn't find any other chairs I liked. I almost bought some from Ikea. Then I almost bought some from an unfinished wood store. I tried the thrift stores and the classifieds.

But really, let's reason together. We all know the chances of finding some vintage Charles Eames chairs in Utah like my sister did are nigh impossible. 

When our neighbor called and asked for his gold and rust colored chairs back, I knew we had a problem. So I started shopping again. And I finally decided.

It's a new take on the old Navy chair by CB2: the Bandit Chair.

We bought six. And yes, incase you're wondering, I still feel sick to my stomach when I think of how much they cost, all together in a lump sum. I don't know why. However, I think I can live with it. They are 1/4 the price of the Emeco chairs, and I absolutely love them. The kids and Mr. Coleman were lukewarm about them, but I don't get my style advice from them anyway, so they are going to live with them too.

I admit I get a warm fuzzy feeling each time I think about 6 matching dining room chairs. It's about time.

Friday, June 26, 2009

I Am

I recently read some advice by publisher/author/editor Arthur Levine here on writing. He suggests to ignore the common advice of writing "what you know", and simply write "you".

And it got me thinking.

Who am I really? And what am I writing about?

I am a beginner. I am vulnerability and things not quite figured out. I am blushing embarrassment and not belonging. I am first love discovered and long good byes.

I am mistakes, and regret and a heart ripping in two. I am rage. I am disillusionment, betrayal and the worst kind of fear.

But I am glimmers of hope and humor in dark times. I am treading water and wisdom bought with a price. I am forgiveness given and forgiveness found. And I am joy and contentment and passion. I am myself.

I am a story to be told.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Down and Derby

Last night our family enjoyed our first Boy Scouts Pinewood Derby as spectators. Mr. Coleman and Micah worked on his truck for about a week. [But, Mr. Coleman actually bought a Pinewood Derby book about a year ago. I think he has been dreaming of this moment for years. He, of course, had to buy a new Dremel tool to complete the project.]

Mr. Coleman helps Micah put his car on the track. Casey (on left) and Micah (on right) watch the cars come down the track. Congratulations to Micah and Mr. Coleman for placing third overall. WOOT!

Emma with her friends.


Micah's fake smile. He was really mad that I made him stop before rushing inside to get a picture. Lucas with his blanky, as usual.

Here is the guy that ran the race for us. He has a computerized track and has written a computer program that clocks the car speeds and keeps track of the winners of each heat. Each boy races on each lane once, for a total of six times. I was really impressed. 

And I kept thinking he looked really familiar. And then it dawned on me...

He looks like a Middle Aged Utah version of Tom Delonge. Who I went to high school with. [Actually two high schools, Poway High School, which we both got kicked out of for the same reason. And then Rancho Bernardo  High School, where we enjoyed hanging out with other punk juvenile delinquents. I remember him playing in a band vaguely, and hanging out sometimes, and some other things which I'm afraid I can't mention in a public blog. Ahem.]

You might know Tom as the lead singer of the pop punk band Blink-182, also of Angels and Airwaves (but as of February, still with Blink 182. Apparently they have reunited).

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Catch Up #3: The Longest Post in the World

This post should do it: get me all caught up to the current date and bore most of you to tears. Here it is anyway.


Casey Anne's 10th birthday. She enjoyed a quiet family party at home, got tickets to go see BYU's Music Dance Theater Senior Showcase, and made a wish.

Aw. This brings back such fond memories of Spring Break 2009. We celebrated by going swimming (in the indoor Lehi City pool).

Casey plays soccer. Note the mismatched socks. Her choice.

Micah plays soccer. Mr. Coleman coaches and the rest of us get to deal with the aftermath of a 1-15 season. (Yes, that's only one win. Quite a difference from last year, where we only had one loss.)

The night of Father and Sons Outing in which I unashamedly wore my  garden clogs and Forks sweatshirt, Emma cried her eyes out about not being able to go, and Casey took a book along on our trip to eat out.

Emma's preschool graduation and her public speaking debut (after several failed Primary-Talk-Attempts). We topped off the evening by eating at her restaurant of her choice: Cafe Rio. Yum.


The Barratt Elementary Dance Festival.

Casey Anne performs with her theater class, Up With Kids, in the thrilling show Enchanted. She was Maid Marian from Robin Hood. Tiny stage, 400 people in the audience, 2-year-old boy, and the best part: losing 5 pounds from sweating for 2 hours.

Well, that pretty much wraps up our 2009 spring. Looking back I still feel the same. I'm glad it's over!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Keeping the Channel Open

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours, clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.    ~Martha Graham

I love this quote. I'm setting aside some time in the hereafter to have a chat with this Martha. I just think we could be friends. Must be the dancer in us both.

Say hello to all my budding creative geniuses in this silly photo. Here are most of my piano students at our Master Class the week before the recital.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Catching Our Breaths

What have you done this last week? My family was here visiting this week. Besides the things mentioned on our list above, one or more of the members of our household have done the following:

toured the LDS Church History Museum, top to bottom
toured Temple Square (including the South and North Visitors Centers)
toured the Conference Center
visited Bridal Veil Falls (twice)
played at the Lehi City public pool (twice)
drove to Layton to visit family
watched Up in 3-D at the movie theater
attended a week-long writer's conference
won a drawing
2 baseball games
blew bubbles at Art Dye Park
got sick spinning at Discovery Park
attended a book signing in which I may or may not have been referred to as a BFF by a favorite author

It has been one of the busiest and most fun weeks in memory. This post probably should have a voice-over here saying:

This week has been made possible by the kind and forever fun-loving Helen Melzer.

Thanks, Mom for being you. Even if you did leave an unopened bottle of Organic, Raw, Apple Cider Vinegar in my fridge. I was sad to see you go, headed back for sunnier skies. It rained here again today (and yesterday). I am definitely rethinking my dream of living in the Pacific Northwest. I think Micah said it best, right after you drove away. 

"Mom, Grandma is like the jackpot."

Friday, June 5, 2009

sensitive soul

Earlier this week Micah and I went on a date to Mimi's Cafe. He was using up the last of his Valentine coupons and also a Free Kids Meal that he had earned from school for being Student of the Month. [We are so proud]. He ordered a hamburger and fries. During the course of our meal I heard him say things like, 

"This hamburger is so gross," and "this food is making my stomach hurt," while clutching his middle and leaning over.

So I was surprised when our waiter came and asked if we needed any boxes and Micah said, "Yes, I do."

After our waiter walked away, I asked Micah why he wanted a box if he disliked his food so much.

"Well," he responded, "I didn't want him to feel bad. I didn't want him to know his food is disgusting."


This morning we are preparing our house for company to arrive. Which means I am using the timer to motivate my kids with threats of extra jobs and endless summer days of groundation if they do not finish cleaning before the timer beeps. Emma is feeling a bit pesty today and has been teasing the other kids relentlessly.

She grabs a stuffed monkey from Micah's room, races into her room and tosses it on her bed while yelling, "This monkey feels good in my room!"

Micah comes into rescue it and says, "Emma, this Monkey doesn't like it in your room. My room has a jungle theme and yours has a cotton candy theme."


Is this typical for an 8 year old boy? I am so glad he is developing a sense of empathy, even for waiters. Emma has pink walls in her room. I guess that's where the cotton candy thought came from. And as far as using words like "theme", perhaps I have spent too much time watching Divine Design.