28 December 2008

Grammy, Grandfather, Gramma & NanNan

I love you...thanks for reading!
and sharing
and loving me

27 December 2008

just another day...

yup, it's just another day of christmas break.
i don't get up until noon (mostly because i stay up till 3)
and this is what i find...not surprised!
the entire house has been transformed into
one gigantic magic carpet
we have a lot of blankets!
we've been measuring this
amazing icicle for days...
it finally is longer than the window!
and yes...it is now 6pm
and we are still in these cheetah girl jammies,
(thanks grammy)
the blankets are all folded
but now the living room is a petshop villiage
the great life!

anyone ready for a game of scrabble?

26 December 2008

Polar Express

The girls go to a charter school
Freedom Academy
and although I complain about the endless nightly homework it really is a great school...and this year for a Christmas Party they did The Polar Express.
we all came in pajamas and got in this line that wrapped around the gym...waiting to board the train. Our conductor blew the whistle, we showed him our tickets and off we went to the first stop...a classroom where one of the older students read aloud a portion of the book...suddenly the whistle blew again and we were off to the next stop...ah! the cafeteria where we were served hot cocoa and cookies. The third stop was went Santa gave the first gift of Christmas and here came the man in red and delivered tiny gold bells to the kids...the final stop was when the boy lost the bell and Santa returned it. Then they shuffled us out to our cars. Brilliant! home and in bed at a good hour...a very smart mom planned this one!

(except that emi's bell got lost in the car and it was a tearful process trying to find the little treasure...next time I hope they give bells with a ribbon to put around their necks)
It really was a great night.
Lynzee and Emi have BFF's in their classes
that happen to be sisters also! go figure.
Lynzee and Lydia
Emi and Natalie
(It makes play dates easier)

Dancing Hearts

The Ruby Shoes Studio has been very busy...
especially the past two months!
We did a fun rendition of Peter & the Wolf
We had auditions back in August and I was surprised at the results.
It's not what I would've picked but it was pretty near perfect.

Lynzee was the Wolf and Emi was a Raccoon.

here is a slideshow if you want to feel like you are at the show...
Then we did our annual Nativity Presentation.
This 15 minute ballet in honor of baby Jesus is very close to my heart. When things were low, really low...Reu and I built the Ruby Shoes Studio in 6 weeks, true story. Of course it was impossible without my work-horse father and my brothers. The Studio saved my life that winter and those children are such a part of me.

This ballet came as I listened to music from the Canadian Brass.
It moved me and I saw the whole thing in my head.
Mary entering with a vessel of some sorts resembling her as the chosen vessel to carry the Lamb of God. The exchange...the breathtaking exchange between Mary and the Messenger from heaven as she discovered the news of a baby...the baby that would save mankind. The shepherds in their fields with the fuzzy toddling sheep. The heavenly hosts celebrating in that magic field. And then when Jesus entered. I don't care that it is a doll on a stage...when those three year old fuzzy sheep hold him...one by one...they get to rock, twirl, hold and pat the baby Jesus...kissing his forehead as they pass him to the next. We each have such an individual experience with Jesus Christ, and Christmas time makes us evaluate His role in our lives. Then the stars...twinkling across the stage...the magistrates following the Star of the East until they find the Lord. And their worshipful dance.

This is the third year we have done this ballet and each year I cry when the angel and Mary dance and when the sheep...who always steal the show...get to hold the Savior. This year was no exception. Except that it meant so much more to have Lynz and Lauren play those parts...both of those girls started my class in Orem almost 5 years ago...and for an 8 year old, that's a large part of their lives!

And now about the "Mary Dance"...
I decided to dance with the two oldest classes (yes they are only 6-8! but they've been with me since they were 3)...year after year they have heard me say "there is a light right here swelling inside of you and you must push it out thru your heart, open your chest, thru your face...and all the way thru your fingers and toes...don't forget your toes. point those toes, shoot it out. if you do not dance thru that light your dancing is only steps." Most have heard the other part of my speech when I tell them "we are dancing to share that light and to express all that's inside of us. we are not trying to impress, we are trying to bless. make the audience swell."
I think you can see that in these photos of our Mary rehearsal...and in the slideshow from the previous post

15 December 2008

A dear mother sent me this today and it made my day. Perhaps I don't need to tell you about how much the Mary Dance meant to me...these pictures speak.
Click to play Mary Dance
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow

14 December 2008

(big sigh)

I feel like I should post...
so many important things happened this week.

Reu and I have now been married for 10 years.
pretty big deal.
(good thing we are celebrating this next weekend)

My Ruby Shoes Studio
had two performances this past week.
a very very big deal.

I passed a kidney stone yesterday.
thank heaven for my sister being here.
so I'm tired. my body is wore out from everything.

I want to write all about this Nativity
performance and what it means to me.
I want to tell you about the
"Mary Dance" and about my daughters.
I have tons of pictures and video to post.
but like I said. I am so tired.

craziness usually leads to crashing but hopefully
I'll get out of bed tomorrow.
this performance tends to take everything out of me.
that's why I initially told the parents I wasn't going to do it.
but we did. and I'm glad we did. very glad.
but I have no energy for christmas now...
especially after passing a kidney stone.
which by the way,
is worse than labor.
and that's from a mom who
had 2 all natural you go girl deliveries.
off to bed.
(big sigh)
you'll get your pictures later.

04 December 2008

love to hate him

you know I absolutely love my dogs.
probably not your dog.
but I do love mine.

But tonight...I may shoot one of them.
it would be Charlie to be specific.
because of course my Lola can do no wrong.

Who's idea was this instictual marking?
Why do male dogs have to claim every clean linen in the house? ...including ALL the beds and pillows...oh and let's not forget the couch.
damn dog!

I think maybe he is telling me something like hey guys I'm feeling all left out and I know I'm all muddy from outside but I still want to curl up on these beds with you at night why do I have to sleep in my crate because when I was cute and little I got to curl up with any of you all night long so what happened huh?

or maybe he is just saying "mine. yes mine. this too is oh yes...mine!"

I am going to wash him with every load tomorrow...because heaven knows it's too late to start now.

where's the incense?
we're all sleeping on the floor.
i'm glad reu works graves.
***update***poor charlie got neutered yesterday...and it broke my heart. I do love him.

01 December 2008


my mind is quiet tonight.
at least for a while.
and I am grateful.

29 November 2008

"save money. live better"

for the record...
there are certain things
that almost ruin Christmas instantly!
the after thanksgiving earlybird shopping is one.

a few years ago I decided to try it out
...get a few cheap boardgames
a woman with a cartfull of Chutes&Ladders
was running to the register
fighting off people grabbing them out of her cart.
she was screaming.
I was so upset at "the mob mentality"...I left.
and I will absolutely never go again.
people can be so mean. crazed. thoughtless.

and the fact that a walmart worker died
actually died! during that rush this year
...makes me crazy mad.

let me rant for a moment longer
about the whole "walmart mentality"
more more more for less less less
filling our homes with imitations of the real things.
we spoil our kids...encouraging "the entitled mentality"
we spend most of the year decluttering
or sucking up little pieces in the vacuum.

I am beside myself this year.
We are a wasteful people.
And then comes "the limited mentality" from 5am-11pm
one day when those deals that rule us have a time limit
only so much to go around.
survival of the fittest.
the whole damn thing pisses me off.

to the the 34 year old man
unlocking the door to thousands that had
gathered starting from 9pm the night before.
to the man that had worked the whole night
getting your damn store ready...
I am so sorry for the greedy and entitled.
I am so sorry nobody could stop.
they did not see you.
I am so sorry the prices where that important.
I'm sorry that
you were priceless.
and still nameless.

25 November 2008

words to live by

emi comes running thru the house after school
...she is headed for the bathroom exclaiming
"I haven't gone potty
since I was in the shower this morning!"
(I told you she reduces paper waste!)
us girls are watching "dancing with the stars" finale tonight
emi says "mom you could be on that show"
lynzee informs her,
"then she would have to wear a really immodest dress"
during a commercial from Kay Jewelers...
lynzee says aloud
"when I get married I don't want a ring I want a necklace"
go figure.

02 November 2008

Dress Up Daze

So...it was halloween, case you missed it.
here is my little devil and sweet angel.

Lynzee had "the devil look" perfected a little too well...it was actually scaring me...imagine this child being defiant in her teenage years...SCARY!

Brittney surprised us and showed up for trick or treating...it was a beautiful night, perfect weather! of course it's been raining nonstop ever since.

24 October 2008

Tag: Fourths

I took up Kristin's tag...fourth folder fourth file (in my photo folder) and when I saw what it was I couldn't help posting it...my Lynzee at the ya-ya sisterhood last weekend, isn't she something? and this captures so much of her...

23 October 2008

Goddess Girls

I'm counting my blessings and we must celebrate these four women...these single moms that live every moment. they love so deeply. and they just get what it is all about...such wisdom, such strength...and they have become a part of me.

If you have read Seceret Life of Bees then you understand what I mean when I say that I am like Lily in this pink house of amazingly strong wise women that have helped me become more real, or rather celebrate my own realness. Their stories are not mine to tell...but know this...these four women are magic. very much.

We miss you Critti and Mary...thank you for swinging and spooning with us.

Kisses under your pillow SuperJen and Kali...thank you for your shelter, your safety and peace...plus all the fun laughter late into the night.

I smell you Leish...and Ashy too...thank you for your unconditional love over so many years, never setting expectations and for your song...the music in your soul and in your hands.

And my Maren... my dear Maren ...thank you for studio moments, for brilliant schemes...and your faith. I love you inside and out.

21 October 2008

Thank you

Thank you to my parents, my sister, my close friends and dear cousins for your encouragement, your perspective and your heartfelt love. Your words have carried me...every one of them.

I'm still a wreck...not all the time of course, there are always those magic moments dancing with children in my studio...that's where I should be taking pictures and posting...but when you are in the moment you hardly ever capture it.

I've realized something this past week...about my heart. For months my heart has felt swollen. Literally and physically, as if there is no room for my lungs to fill...and I find myself holding my breath. I keep saying, I cannot breathe, and then my chest aches. And what I've realized is that there is great truth in saying that some things can "lighten your heart." So many of you have lightened my heart...not quite as powerfully as these little girls that bounce into my studio with surety that I can teach them how to fly...but close enough :)

Thank you again. Thank you for your phone calls and emails also, it motivates me to keep going, even if my head is down...it's so windy.

I love you for lifting my head and lightening my heart.

13 October 2008

cannot sleep...thoughts...and I'm sad

I just want to send these thoughts out into space somewhere...and for those of you that honestly want to know how I am doing...not just what I'm doing...this is what is keeping me awake tonight...

Why do I face such internal despair when I have such a charmed and even coveted life? Why do my thoughts race and my feeling swallow me up, and when I run from them they come up like a cool tide and then rip my feet out from underneath me...and I get caught in an undertow, unable to breathe or get my bearings. Why can't I control my thoughts and therefore my strong emotions? Why can't I detach from grief that is not mine?

I'm scared of winter, of everything dying...of the trees in their bare dark branches scratching a slate sky and the freezing air that steals your breath and makes you choke and cough. Why can't we hibernate in big blankets until April?

The ebb and flow of life. The tides, the moon, the seasons, even our own breathing...everything is in a constant state of exchange. But in the winter, it feels so stagnant, waiting and asleep...we should all sleep.

my dance to do list...I never clock out...I'm always planning lessons and costumes and shows, and I never live up to my expectations...I hope it matters, that these girls know I love them and more importantly that they love themselves...if I'm balancing professionalism and being personal. trying to shake my insecurities.

I realize I'm a bit too reflective and even mournful tonight...I miss some important people in my life. I feel loss, and the winter storm that came thru this weekend took all the newly bloomed roses out back.

I need to move somewhere warmer.
and I need to sleep...
I'll probably delete this post soon, but for those that read it...I love you...I'll be fine soon.

06 October 2008


There is this magic place...I pretend it belongs to me...it is such a part of me that I must be a part of it also. It is magic, and I've been able to share it with some very specialist of people in my life. There is something in the air out there...perhaps it's just that...air! you can see it in the faces in these photos...it's called breathing. There are still a few of you yet to take and it is very beautiful in the fall. There are two sides to this Terabithia as I call it...the swing side and the tree side. The swing side is quite public and well known, but the tree side is my own terabithia and if you've been lucky enough to go with me you know how very special it is. Last week I was able to go to the swing side three times, once by myself, once with my angelic Jen, and once with my big sister Brittney who came to see us for the weekend. I wanted to take some of you along by photos to see a very special place to me...there is a lot of photos in this album and it will just keep expanding...

27 September 2008

Pyramid Lake

A few weekends ago I went home to Nevada for a yoga workshop my mom was doing. She has this magic spot...full of tufa rock, which is the coolest stuff...light as styrofoam and shell-like but mountainous, it is formed by the hot geysers under the lake...and the sand was very dark with these tiny white perfect shells...it was perfect. bare. earthy. grounding. a bit dangerous as there was no communication or human life present. The Paiute tribe definitely has some sacred ground and I'm so grateful they share it with us. There is "the mother stone" which resembles a woman, sitting and wrapped in a blanket and her basket is beside her...it is all made of tufa also and the legend is that the squaw is waiting for her sons to come back from war and her tears form the salt water below. It is very still out there. The energy of our drumming circle was amazing, drums are so much fun...it's good to beat on something and feel so productive. I took my girls back the next day, it was a different feeling but it was still magic...nevada is very beautiful. bare, yes. but perhaps that just helps us see things better. bare, but not barren. the rocks are alive with faces and shadows and every angle presents a new image. thanks mom.

17 September 2008

Boys II Men...again.

So this one time...a few years back, when Leish and I were 14 I think, my sister Brittney had this birthday wish to go see Boys II Men with her best friend Katie, and I got to go with my best friend Leisha too. I remember how crazy many people were there and they had all these amazing effects...making it rain indoors, coming up thru the floor in their white tuxes with roses and melting us with all those love songs. giddy girls.

So this one time...a few weeks ago, when Leisha and I were moms, Boys II Men comes to Orem Utah of all places to perform at the outdoor theater...and her man buys us tickets! This time it's her sister that gets to go with us, love you Kim! And we get there over an hour early and settle into our seats...hum, but we seem to be the youngest in this very diverse crowd...aside from the many infants (only in utah). There are all these "old" people there, as in older than our parents. And I'm thinking of the lyrics to "I'll make love to you" which of course I'm counting on hearing...can they really sing "throw your clothes on the floor" to this audience? well they did. and everyone went crazy. there was at least 3,000 people there, babies and all. The energy was intense, almost like back in the day, minus the stage effects and costume changes. Thanks Daniel! It was a rush. giddy girls all over again.

09 September 2008


For you mom. It's in her blood...I could watch her for days! I'm seriously considering flying to manhattan to take class, no matter the cost. I love what she says about how in the end it's the vision...how it's mental, how it's free. and I love that she is from Ethiopia and has such a grasp on the balance of life...education and creation and life. She's such a real person to me. And so much of what she is and does is exactly like you mom. I am so amazed.

29 August 2008

Saving the Earth

last year...
Emi's kindergarten teacher was an amazing woman from Oregon... Emi became an advocate for saving the Earth and its inhabitants. I love it!
Emily is a firm believer in not eating cows...after all, they already give us butter, cheese and milk. She would prefer us not eat chickens either since they give us eggs.
It's not nice.
She monitors the water usage in our house as well...gently reminding Reuben to do all his spitting in the sink when he brushes his teeth before turning on the water.
She loves recycling! She walked very importantly and responsible when I sent her to take the newspapers down the block to our designated dumpster.

One thing, however, makes no sense to her. Reusable cloth grocery bags. After all...we need the plastic ones in order to recycle them at the school for money, and we reuse the plastic bags all the time for all sorts of stuff!
She's doing her part!

25 August 2008

trying to freeze a moment

I need to capture the moment I am having right now...quickly before it fades. quickly, pause my playlist.

I am having a very rough night...still detesting the fact that I was trying to escape at a computer, submerging myself in google searches...any distraction. Then of course I come to my cafe to check if friends have visited...looking for a little note on a napkin. Following the trail...I stumble upon this video...and oddly I pushed play, which I never take time to do. It's amazing what can happen when we hold still for a little while...especially when you are alone, exhausted, grasping...


...there is that moment again. I guess it works each time. It reminds me of prayer...those rare times for me, when I feel swept up..."in the arms of an angel"...actually the part that makes me swell inside is when the men are watching Christ ascend and you see their faces, our faces...and then we see Him looking down, leaving yet outstretched towards us and everything inside of me rushes out "come back"....and then...did you feel it? I want you to know I did. I felt Him come back and fill me and everything is going to be ok. peace. be still. you are real. what you do matters. be still.

21 August 2008

Lunch at Nae's

From back in the day...during the charmed life. Let's see...about seven or eight years ago all of us were thrust into each others lives...during the time we needed each other the most...building the foundations of our families...serving together and serving each other. My fondest memories of each? wouldn't you love to know! too many. But thanks to the amazingness of Alex we still get together for lunch to marvel at the interactions of our children...which seem to be multiplying!

20 August 2008

18 August 2008


We realized right away that Disneyland is much more than "the happiest place on earth." In fact, it is the land of every feeling. Emi soon began to ask "what feeling is this ride?" and the rides started to fit into catagories:

storybook-by-cart (such as Alice, Peter Pan, Winnie the Pooh and such) spinning (tea cups, dumbo, etc.) make-your-insides-move (like splash mountain & river run) creep-you-out (ie: haunted mansion and bugs life show) and the dreaded "tipping rides" which were in a seperate catagory from make-your-insides-move because only some coasters actually take you sideways, which became the deciding factor for Emi if she would ride...we basically traumatized her with ridng space mountain entirely unprepared.

And then there was this other curious feeling at Disneyland...right around 2pm, that feeling when you have sweat dripping inside your clothes and your personal space is limited to an inch around you...and you realize you can actually walk away, but really you can't because you've been standing here too long...i think it's called resignation. It meant it was time to go back to the hotel for a while. But honestly, our trip was brilliantly wonderful, and we got to go thru all the sensation overload as a family with nobody's schedule but our own. We learned a lot about each other and how to help and love each other better.

Here is our Top Ten from Disneyland:

10. riding in our hot car on top of a tow-truck for two hours into cedar city...this is in the top ten because Amber made out like a bandit with a new Pacifica!

9. Churros, Pomme Frites and the Monte Cristo sandwich, yes it is entirely deep fried...and the Pineapple Dole Whip Float in the Tiki Room

7. splash mountain and the grizzly river run... riding Indiana Jones with Lynzee...the second time.

6. Club Libby Lu makeovers (even though Emi took hers out a few hours later to wash it in the water at the puddle park)

5. The fireworks...watching from our top of the hotel pool, from Adventureland, from Fantasyland, and the last night, from the castle...great show...although I think I'm having respiratory difficulties as a result.

4. this amazing acrobatic cirque du soleil bird girl with her rope on The Lion King parade float, seriously worth an autograph.

3. Emi says,"when we shrunk in the cereal box to go into the bug land"

2. Lynz says, "snowglobes" (both are currently broken)

1. the ultimate Disneyland experience came moments before we left the park near midnight on the last day...we had embroidered some mickey hats at the last minute and the girls were having a meltdown outside...lynz was bent over this post sobbing and exhausted when Mickey Mouse suddenly appeared from behind the building and started rubbing her back, it took a while for her to turn around, she was that tired...but when she did...it was disney magic. Walt would be proud.

06 August 2008

Lola had Six!

I love our dogs! I was never really a dog person, and especially an inside dog person, until we got Lola. And having Charlie actually does make it twice as fun. If you haven't seen Charlie and Lola on Disney...you are depriving yourself. She had six puppies on Sunday around 4am on the middle of our bed. True story. Reu was sleeping with our girls (I was at sisterhood) with both dogs curled in the family bed for the night. And she just delivers amongst them all. By the time I got home around 11am, poor Reuben was out to the world. The girls had taken the only hours old puppies all over the house, making beds for them and hauling them up and down the stairs. Lola was so stressed out she had peed everywhere they had taken them. I was gratefull my sisters were with me and we cleaned up in 20 minutes flat! The puppies are currently still alive :) There are two girls and four boys. I will keep adding photos to the album as they grow...and maybe a video if I can figure that one out.

Sisterhood Weekend 2008

We went to Park City this year for our GoddessFest. We always begin our weekend by cooking dinner friday night...Brittney didn't hold back this year. The Napa Valley Basil Smoked Hamburgers were incredible. We also share things that have impacted our life over the past year and glimpse into everyone's life...that's my favorite part. The plan was to walk around Main Street the next morning and we were in luck since the Arts Festival was that day! Go figure! We went to Midsummer Night's Dream at the outdoor theater in Sundance that night and ended Sunday morning by learning about a women in our ancestry and adding her as an honorary sister in the amazing book Brittney is creating. This year was Elizabeth Carson, a beekeeper among other things and we all took home raw honey in remembrance of her. Sisters are powerful

Dance Camp

This year's camp was amazingly fun. The dynamics of the group made every day exciting for me...I wanted to sit and share some photos of what I do most days. I so very much realize the impact I make in these children's lives, and I know my job makes a big difference in their awareness of their bodies, an appreciation for differences, and most of all their confidence to take on the world. Of course it makes the most difference in my own life, the drawings and little treasure gifts I spontaneously receive mean the world to me. This studio...named after reuben actually and a combination of the magic ruby slippers and the red shoes ballet...it is such a safe place and the expression that takes place there is truly magical.

05 August 2008

Pocatello with Brittney

I went to visit Brittney and her girls for a weekend in their new home. We spent all night talking about things we can't remember now, sharing our favorite websites and planning for the sisterhood weekend. The cousins had fun swimming, playing with a bubble wand, putting on plays, some dizzy hill-rolling and a bit o' drama, of course. The only unpleasant part of the trip was when emi choked at applebee's...she's still a tad traumatized.

04 August 2008

Gymnastics with Kirra

The girls did a summer gymnastics camp with our friend Kirra, who happened to be on the BYU team and now teaches the current team, we love her! So now Lynz and Em will be in Bejing later this month so you'll need to cheer them on. Well...at least they have the salute down...and a great backward roll and backbends! I got the 'team' medals for the end of camp...Reu made a beam, we attached a bar between the doorway, and used some foam mattresses and yoga mats. I was impressed with how the studio really became a gym. Thanks Kirra, Emi has been practicing like crazy and will start taking official classes this fall, we love you!

18 July 2008

July 4th

Lynzee's Baptism

How can I describe this? Well...Emi gave the prayer, Grandma's both spoke amazingly, Reu baptized her, Grandpa's were witnesses and Lynzee sang a solo that melted my heart, people wished her blessings for her new beginning and we released white balloons as a visual reminder for her to know she is never alone, my best friends were there...in the end it was me that realized that I am not alone in raising this beautiful gifted child of God.

Cramer Visit

Reuben's parents and brother came and spent ten days of non-stop soaking up each other...and still wanting more. My mother in-love actually wore me out shopping, I'll need to practice up for our next visit :) My favorite day of the trip is being trapped in a boat with each other...the girls jumping off the side, racing jet skis and riding a variety of tubes...fun for everyone. Thanks for emptying your pockets for that one dad, we love you.

Hogle Zoo

Lynzee's Birthday

Lynzee's birthday was spent at the Hogle Zoo and she says it was the best birthday ever...imagine that, spending your birthday with your family!

17 July 2008

Summer Sweets

This past month we've been able to spend time with some of our favorite people. Oceana and Sierra stayed with us for a week of poolside fun, dollar store bribes, and studio sleepovers, when else can you stay up until midnight jumping on mattresses, painting your fingernails and rocking out in front of a huge mirror. We met up with Britt, Saul and my whole family for the reunion and then we traded for their dog, which we lost the very first day! Gratefully he didn't make it out of our neighborhood in six hours.