Monday, June 30, 2008


So I know I haven't posted anything lately and here is the reason why. FACEBOOK. When we came back from Penny's wedding I decided to get on it because my friend said it was great. Now I am addicted. I have found my college roommate, 20 of my 37 nieces and nephews and a myriad of high school and college acquaintances. What amazes me is how it finds people you know by studying people you have listed as friends. It is one big crazy mystery to me. i love it.

I am a big giant weirdo!

By the way we also went to Iowa this past weekend which is another reason I haven't posted. We tried to take a family photo, here is how it went down.

P.S. I got this photo from my niece's facebook page.

Monday, June 23, 2008


Some of you know my dog Murphy. He is quite a character and is a proud member of our household which means he burps a lot, watches reality tv and loves ice cream and french fries. Well he recently got a hair cut and it is really quite funny. When he first got the hair cut I didn't even have the heart to take his picture because you could tell he was embarrassed. It has grown out a bit and he looks cute now so here is Murph before and after....

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Super Summer Day

Today was a great day. We went to Costco and only bought what we went there for. (Miracle!) Then this afternoon we went to the pool. It was so much fun for all of us. Emelia even learned a new trick.

Daddy burped and said excuse me and Emelia now likes to make a burp noise and then says "cu me" she likes it even more when I say "excuuuuuuuuse you."


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Pros

I can't adequately describe how I feel right now. Joy is the word I come up with but that doesn't seem like enough. Emelia just gave me a big hug and announced "I wuv you." I have told her a million times that I love her and we practice saying I love you but she has never said it as a sentence or better yet a pronouncement. You see, she can't really talk, she can repeat words and she can identify simple things like dog and book but sentences are limited to repeating after me or Hi puppy. For her to, unprompted, tell me she loves me makes my heart soar. To know that she feels about me even a fraction of the way that I feel about her even though I fail her every day in some small way, is more than I can actually take in.

Thuy, this is the best pro for having kids, I am sorry I can't do it justice so you can know what it feels like but it honestly makes every pain, tear, sleepless night and cranky day worth it.

TV is weird

I am sure most of you know that Tim Russert died on Friday. He was a noted political analyst for NBC news and a favorite in the Mochal household. He was such a great commentator but he seemed like he could be your neighbor so his opinions were that much more relevant. He spoke in plain English and seemed like an overwhelmingly good guy. I have been really sad all weekend about his death. Yes, I realize that I don't actually know him so it is weird that I have been so upset about his death. I kept hearing about how strong his faith was so I hope to see him in heaven one day.

The thing that has been bugging me is it makes me think a lot about health issues in general. We have been working on eating better, eating more vegetables and what not but we struggle with exercise. I do better than Jeff because it is easier for me to carve out time since they have childcare at our gym. I worry about Jeff though. I just don't know where he can add exercise on a consistent basis in t o his schedule. God bless him he talks about working out in the evening but he really values that time with Em. Maybe we can try evening walks as a family or something. I don't know but I know God wants us to care for our bodies since they are the temple of the holy spirit, but I wish then that God would not have allowed french fries to be invented. I think I will start a new prayer campaign for Jeff's health. Sometimes I feel like I just hand God a laundry list of things that I am worried about but I am not sure how else to approach my prayer life. Does anyone have any tips or reference books to recommend? You know I like a good instruction manual.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day

Since today is Father's Day I shall compose a list of ten things I love about my dad and ten things Emelia loves about hers...

My Dad
1. He loves me no matter how many times I was a rebellious jerk in high school.
2. He has always been proud of me and probably always will be.
3. When he sees Emelia he wants to capture every smile in a picture.
4. He is not afraid to wear a Hawaiian print shirt.
5. Our relationship has been all over the map but we have come to the spot of loving each other and being comfortable in that love, no matter what.
6. He loves chain emails - that makes me laugh.
7. He put me through school.
8. When it rains anywhere in the midwest he calls to make sure we are okay - you can image the phone calls we have gotten with the rain/tornadoes/floods.
9. I am exactly like him and even when I wish I wasn't I am glad I at least know what makes me who I am.
10. He loves a good Disney movie just like me.

Emelia's Dad
1. He doesn't care how dirty I get or if my clothes match as long as we are together.
2. He lets me watch more Elmo than mommy.
3. He loves to take me places.
4. Mommy sometimes goes away to visit people and we have so much fun.
5. He plays "cut the pickle, tickle tickle tickle" with me.
6. He doesn't like it when I get shots.
7. He plays me lots of melancholy british rock songs from his iPod.
8. He plays with all my toys in the bathtub.
9. When we go to the park he will push me on the swings forever!
10. He is the best daddy in the whole world.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

More fun than one girl should be allowed to have

My last two days have consisted of a two-hour trip to Super Walmart with a cranky toddler, a visit to the gynecologist and eight hours of traffic school. The only thing missing is a dentist appointment.

I did learn something interesting in traffic school though. Apparently the federal government gives out millions of dollars in "traffic enforcement grants" each spring to fund police overtime to catch speeders and other miscellaneous traffic hooligans. The average traffic school class size is 20, there were 70 people in my class today. Nothing says spring like a ticket!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I'm a good housekeeper I swear

We are very in to puzzles right now and this is what the living room looked like when Emelia went down for nap. Yes that is an outdoor toy in the living room because of the bad storms I brought them in last night, there is a slide behind the couch, don't look.

Are those the welcome home sirens?

Apparently no, they are the tornado sirens. We got back from LA on Monday night late and so I was just starting to get back in the swing of things yesterday and then we had a rough night. Bad storms kicked up right as we were putting the baby down for the night. Needless to say she didn't go to sleep and cried instead which turned out to be a blessing since we had to hightail it down to the basement a half hour later anyway.

My heart breaks for the parents of the boys killed at the boy scout camp. It must be so awful, you send your child off to summer camp and they never come home. I can't began to think about it. I just pray that they know the peace that only God can provide right now.

On a brighter note, our trip to LA was fun but trying. Emelia's schedule posed some challenges but she did great at the wedding. She LOVED the band and could not get enough of the music and dancing. The wedding was beautiful and went off without a hitch at least as far as I could tell. Penny looked amazing and we had good times together. I was so overcome with emotion to see her so happy. It was great!

I don't have any photos from the wedding but their photographer took some great ones. Here are some pics of us doing the tour of our LA faves - In N' Out, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf and the pool.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Summer Lovin'

So I think it is officially summer, at least it feels like it around here. It is hot and sticky and we have a thunderstorm every three days. I think I was hoping since it was so much colder here during the winter it would also be cooler during the summer, I don't think that is the case.

We had a nice weekend, fairly uneventful. We had some friends over for a barbecue on Saturday and then went to the pool on Sunday. Emelia seemed to have a great time but the sun sucked the energy right out of her. She fell asleep sitting on Jeff's lap midway through eating a snack.

Penny is getting married this weekend in Southern California so we are getting ready for that trip. We leave on Thursday. It should be fun. I am much more relaxed about Emelia flying this time. Armed with the portable DVD player I think we can handle anything. I am hoping to get some fun new pictures while we are out there.

Things around here have been pretty mundane lately. I am grateful for that. I have begun to pray over Emelia while she sleeps. I also pray with her when she wakes up in the morning and as part of our nap/bedtime ritual. I have been reading the book "The New Strong Willed Child" (thank you Korri) which suggested the prayer while they sleep. I pray that God would not break her spirit but that he would bend her will to his and it really is working. Oh she still has tantrums and fusses but I am not seeing the outright defiance in her. I also feel like God is granting me more control over the feelings those tantrums bring up in me. I feel more contained and qualified to handle the situation.

I love her so much but she can make me madder than anyone else on earth. God is really working on me in that respect. I really am so grateful for it.