Thursday, April 4, 2013

It was bound to happen sometime.

Yesterday at dinner, Brandon told us that he swatted a wasp in our house with a magazine and he hit it so hard that it split in two.

Luke said, without skipping a beat, "Well at least ya killed the damn thing."

We were silent for a moment and then we cracked up.

I guess I haven't hidden my potty mouth as well as I thought.

He asked, "Did I just say a bad word?" He was repentant.
(I'll admit that I was proud at how well he used it.)

Unfortunately, his little brother sat across from me and repeated to himself, "Damn, damn, damn, damn." 

I wonder when, and especially where, he will use that choice word.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Merry Christmas, Matt!

Disclaimer: I'm so embarrassed about the following post. But I can't bear to delete it. Save yourself! Don't watch the video.

We made the following video for my brother Matt, who is far away from his family right now, not in uniform, but serving his country. I hope he can see this. We tried to send it another way, but it didn't work. Hope it works this way. Sorry the home tour is so long. I'd edit it, but I don't know how.

If you are not Matt, you can still watch, but it's long and very jumpy. Sorry my filming is really bad. But, it does include a tour of our new home, which we wish could see more of our friends and family in person.

We love you, Matthew.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Driving Home From Church

I pulled over twice on the way home from church to break up fighting in the backseat. The first time, I made them say something nice about each other. 

Luke: Pete's smart.

Pete: Nu-uh, Luke's the one that's smart! (smaht)

Carrie: (sing-song voice) You're both smart. That's wonderful!

Pete: (impatiently) Nooooo, Luke's da one that's smahter. 

Carrie: (not in a sing-song voice) Okay, say something else nice about Pete, Luke.

Luke: (not smiling at all, bored) He's funny.

Carrie: He IS funny. Okay, Petey, Luke is smart, now say one more good thing about him.

Pete: He has really long hair. (He has weally lond hay-uh.)

Carrie: Great! Let's get going.

Four blocks later, we pulled over again. This time I just made them apologize.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Metaphorically Speaking

This is an OLD post that I never posted. You can guess why. But, today I want to post it. 

 I visited the Pioneer Woman today, where I saw this sign.

I really like it and it reminds me of my hometown. Furthermore, I wish people in my life would follow its counsel. This afternoon little dirty boys tracked mud through the house across the just-barely-swept floor and into the just-cleaned bathroom.  The pristine bar of soap is now brown and the counters are smudged. I swept again.

Metaphorically, too, I'd like this gritty bit of wisdom to hold water. But, I think maybe it doesn't. I definitely want admittance even with all my metaphorical sh**. Maybe the true love sign would say, "Come on in, you'll get cleaned up eventually."

I'm not sure if this is my blogging rebirth. But, here's an update: In November, Luke turned 7. He's lost several teeth. Currently he's completely missing the top middle two and one on the bottom. On his 3rd or 4th tooth, he wanted money for his tooth, but he also wanted to keep the tooth. I made him write a letter to the tooth fairy. He wrote: To the Tooth Fairy. Hi I am Luke. "PLEES LEEF MY TOOCH. P.S. I DOTE BELEEF IN YOU."

The week before Christmas I told the boys that I hadn't done any shopping for their Christmas presents. Petey, age 3, said, "Tanta bings my peasants." Luke said, "There's no such thing as Santa." Pete replied, "Ya-huh. I taw him in da pawade."

One of the things Brandon gave me for Christmas was a bouquet of flowers. The card said, "I think 2012 is going to be a great year for us." I cried when I read it. I knew he was talking about his job search. 

Happy New Year. 

And Pete is finally, finally, finally potty trained. 
2012 will be a great year indeed.

Friday, March 11, 2011

verse with blurry photos of boys

Little boys with hair of gold
Love me even when I'm old.
Love me when my hair is gray
Come and kiss me anyway.
Bring me colas, lemonade to drink
Come and see me week by week.
Bring your children, let them run
And I'll remember when their dads were young.
-Carrie to Luke & Pete

Luke, Pete, aluminum foil belts, wrist bands, and hats


In the photo above, Luke and I are in the background. I'm making dinner and Luke is keeping me company.
Lately Luke likes to sit cross-legged on the counter while listening to various cds to see which ones he likes.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I think I have a problem with authority.

It's been more than a month since I posted.

A couple of weeks ago, Brandon said, "You haven't posted anything for a while." Then he said, "I think it's time."

Brandon might be joined to me at the hip for forever whether he likes it or not, but he only reads this when I tell him to. And I don't know why I tell him to. All I ever get is an understated, "I liked it."
So why does he have an opinion about how often I post, I'd like to know.

Anyway, two more weeks have passed and...nothin'. The muse is on vacation.
She doesn't like being bossed around.

 Today I got my Annual First of Spring Sunburn. It hurts when I scratch my forehead and I look a little bit lobster-y. I do this every year. Lovely day. Go to park. Stand in the sun and chat with a friend. Have lunch, push swing, collect sandy sneakers. Go home. A few hours later, roughly brush hair our of my face and damn it. Again.

My husband who never, ever swears said, "I dunno. That's a pretty common word." That's what I call permission. Oh, and now he's talking about Jay Golden Kimball. We compare ourselves to General Authorities in this house and...oh he's still talking, "Our Stake Presidency was talking about sex in the chapel."
Well, not sex in the chapel.

Have I successfully recused myself from any church callings yet?

I'm sitting here with waning courage, and Brandon says, "Go ahead Baby, share it with the world."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Hello, my name is Carrie and

I really want another baby. And I think God wants me to have another baby. Because (mostly) going without sugar and processed foods hasn't been nearly as hard as it has every other time I've tried...and failed. But, I really want a baby and something inside of me has shifted.

But tonight I'm jonesin.'

And it doesn't help that Luke made a great big sign that read "COOKIES." And then I had to help him creatively spell every cookie we could think of. He came up with Fruit Loop Cookies (bleck.) But I still have chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal cookies, and coconut cookies on my mind. Get thee behind me!!

At least the sign isn't completely readable:

Can you read it?

Unfortunately, I can, and I wanna CH CHP OTML cookie (or ten) RIGHT NOW!
But I won't have one. Because I'm on

DAY 16

and that is nothing short of a miracle.

But I do stare extra long at pictures like this.

Wow, that really is torture.

But I must remember the reason I'm trying to eat real, whole foods and no sugary desserts: I feel that I need to be healthier before getting pregnant again with the hope that the pregnancy and post-pregnancy will be better for it. And really, so my scale doesn't break if I get on it after a new baby is born. Oh yes, and that epiphany I had that I want to be healthy enough -- not so I'll be one of the skinny women in the room -- but so that I'll be able to serve my Maker with full purpose of heart, and not have as many moments when I care that I'm not one of the skinny women in the room. That's right, that's what I'm supposed to remember.

(But if you are embracing and not eschewing Sea Salt Caramel Brownies, then by all means...The above photo with an accompanying recipe was found at CuisineNie.)

Friday, January 14, 2011

a day in the life

If you're interested, I've posted about what a homeschool day might look like for us over at my homeschool blog, Yellow, Green, Bwue.

Oh, how's that going? Let me tell you, it's a work in progress. I'm posting because I want to show some solidarity with one of my favorite places to visit: Simple Homeschool.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Merry Christmas from the Randolph-Sengs

 Our Christmas Tree

 Our gingerbread house. 

Below: Pictures taken at Luke's Christmas Piano Recital.

 Christmas lights at our house.

 Merry Christmas! No cards this year. We didn't get pictures made and I imagined you opening the card and saying, "No picture? Lame." So maybe next year. Until then...

 Showing the loot from stockings with Daddy. 

Two of the videos we made for family on Christmas morning.



Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Spirit...NOT

In line today at Walmart, I somewhat-yelled at Luke, "NO. We are not getting anything for you today!"

Another exemplary moment:
Luke and Brandon were arguing about something yesterday morning while getting ready to go do one of our Christmas traditions. I went out there and yelled, "I am tired of this! I am tired of dragging your butts to Christmas cheer!"

{Just this week I was telling Luke and Petey not to say butt. Or, in Petey's case, not to say bott.
"Honey, say bum instead."
Petey: "No, bott."}

Anyway, Luke and Brandon actually made up right away and were sweet and cheery while I simmered for a little while longer. (eyes rolling.)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

December Poem

I found a new blog- Chronicles of a Country GirlI haven't had time to explore it, but she has really beautiful photography. She lives in Maryland (I almost typed Virginia, because that's how I felt looking at the photos.) The above photo of the cardinal was copied from her site. There were others I loved, but this one is good to accompany this poem (which I found at, a sister site to Simple Homeschool, a site I like.)

I Heard a Bird Sing
by Oliver Herford
I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December
A magical thing
And sweet to remember
‘We are nearer to Spring
Than we were in September,’
I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December.

We are nearer to Spring than we were in September. That can apply to certain seasons of our lives, I think.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I need to learn how to stand in the puke when there is no puke, or what I learned this week from the scriptures.

Recognizing that my mothering does not always align with my feelings of love for my boys, I asked Heavenly Father to help me to love Luke more like He loves him. Tuesday night as I prayed, I had a nudging thought that to love him more like that, I'd need to serve him and it might be hard, but I knew I really needed this blessing.

Wednesday morning, I read from Matthew, chapter 14 where Jesus learned of the beheading of John the Baptist, and he "departed then by ship into a desert place apart." But the people thronged to him. He couldn't mourn immediately, or privately. Or at least he chose not to. "And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick." I stopped reading at “compassion,” and I repeated to myself, “Jesus had compassion.”

At breakfast, Luke didn't eat very much and he said his tummy felt bad. By mid-day, he was throwing up. Twice, he made it to the toilet. Once, I wasn't so lucky. He almost made it. Having reached the tiled bathroom floor, he vomited again and again, a substance more like water than puke, clear and orange-y smelling. His small frame, made smaller in his extremity.

He sat in the tub while I cleaned. Quietly he said, “I’m sorry Momma.” 
“Why are you sorry?” 
“I’m sorry I didn’t make it to the toilet.”
“That’s okay, you couldn’t help it.” 
I said it kindly, and honestly. I really meant it. I had rolled my jeans up like a pirate, and was standing in puke. And I loved him more than I loved myself. 

I cleaned and disinfected. (I washed my feet.) I carried a bundle to the laundry. By six o'clock, Luke had fallen asleep on the bed in our "art room." (Yes, a bed in the art room. Disaster lurks around every corner at our house.) 

When his father came home, he gave him a blessing.

The next morning, Thursday, Luke was better. He was chipper and playful and totally fine.
That morning I read the remainder of Matthew 14. Jesus feeds the five thousand, and then sends the multitude away and sends his disciples to get into a ship. And, "...he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone."

I don't know why this moved me so much, but finally Jesus gets to be alone. I guess I felt a little bit of compassion for Jesus.

"But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary."

"And in the fourth watch of the night, Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea."

When I've read this passage before (and what follows), I’ve always been struck by Peter’s impetuous nature, going to the Savior on the water. I've always been struck by the need to keep my eyes on the Savior lest I sink into the water. I've always been struck by the Savior who immediately rescues Peter. But this time, as I read this passage, I noted the footnote of verse 25, which explains that the fourth watch is between three and six in the morning. That is so late. I've needed the Savior to come to me in the literal late hours. 

He did not come immediately, but he came. And I think He knew He would come. And so when he asks Peter, “wherefore didst thou doubt?” I think He’s saying: I am the Savior. I am a sure thing, surer than the water that sucks you under, surer than any inky depths. How can you doubt me?

And I think He is saying that to me:  I am the Savior, and I am a sure thing, surer than any water, or devil, or trial, or inherited personality trait. I will save you and I will save yours; my promises and our covenants are sure.

I had asked Heavenly Father to help me to love Luke more like He loves Luke. First, I need to serve him, and maybe not in a fluffy, “I made you cookies!” kind of way. I need to serve him when he needs it. And I need to feel his need in a personal, not removed, kind of way --standing in the puke, so to speak.

And I need to love him from a faithful place, not from a place of fear, knowing that Jesus will walk on the water to me or to Luke, and even if it isn't until the fourth watch, it will still be okay. 

(By the way, I do not believe that Luke was struck with a stomach bug just so I could have an obvious object lesson.)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

In the Spirit of Thanksgiving

Brandon's bike got stolen--again. Yes, yes, I know he should lock it up or put it in the garage. But he forgot. He probably forgot because when he got home around seven last night, he came in, immediately had dinner with us, did some dishes, then went to work applying for a few new jobs.

He was up this morning at six, and by seven, he was ready to go. It's really dark when he gets up in the morning.

I have been thinking about being thankful even when things don't go the way I hope. For example, Brandon has an interview coming up!!! For a few days, in my mind, he already had the job. And I felt thankful. But, I'm going to try to remember to be thankful even if it doesn't pan out.

I know Heavenly Father has a plan for us. In the past, the plan has consistently not followed what I think should happen. But we have felt the Lord's hand over us and seen Him make a way when there was no way. And I'm going to try to remember that, even while a teensy part of me trembles at the thought that He's only just begun to work on us.

Worth five minutes of your time, even if you've already seen it. (Click twice to see it better.)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Boys and Broomsticks

Today, I pretended to be a witch and carried the boys on my broom (Literally. And it wasn't easy.) to my gingerbread house where I wanted to fatten them up. "What can I tempt you with, my pretty? Will you eat icecream, chocolate chip cookies, a juicy steak?" It didn't matter what I said, Luke said, "No." He understood that I was trying to make him plump for eating. But each time Luke said, "No" or "Uh-uh," Pete quietly and resolutely said, "Yes."

(I'm feeling my first rush of excitement that Christmas is coming!)

Click on the pictures for sources.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Two love letters

I do not keep a regular journal. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because I am very embarrassed by my teenage self when every entry, every entry! was about a boy. Not always the same boy, but you get the picture. Oh the angst, then and the angst now, remembering. Then there's the undeniable fact that sometimes I'm crazy. So when I'm crazy and I just have to let the dam bust, I write by hand on random loose-leaf paper. And I write quickly and sometimes I cross out paragraphs with large x's. And the handwriting is not neat. The letters are small and kind of spiky. And the lines scratch my unhappiness or anger across the paper. Then I fold those papers into quarters and stuff them in my dresser drawers. And I feel a lot better. But I don't want them bound into a journal! Hello, posterity, your great great granny sends you her love and...tempests. (yyeck-I don't want to be called Granny.) So, I begin journals when I am well and happy and spiritually on. But I'm only human and I don't always stay that way. And it's just too real.

But I do this instead: I blog, irregularly. And I write love letters and save them on my computer. (Sometimes a tad bit of the crazy seeps in, just in case you're worried that I'll only pass that down in my genes and parenting practices.)
Mostly, they are intensely personal and I feel like a traitor publishing them, so they stay private. But here are two I wrote tonight:

October 22, 2010 (wee hours of the morning.)

Dear Luke and Pete,

Tonight I made 2 fresh raspberry pies. I am very proud of myself. I put them in the freezer and we will bake them later. Raspberries were on sale for 50 cents a half-pint and that is a tremendous deal. Your father and I picked through them and tossed the moldy ones—they went bad quickly! That was frustrating. But, oh well. I told your Dad that if he didn’t help me do that, then he couldn’t have any raspberry pie (like the story of The Little Red Hen) because I did NOT want to do it by myself and he did NOT want to help. I won. He helped. Then he took out the garbage. Bless that man. I gave him packages I thought would be extra moldy so I wouldn’t have to deal with them. My selfish plan didn’t always work though; I got some really gross ones. Anyway, this is supposed to be a note about how I’m going to bake wonderful and delicious raspberry pies. Maybe we should call them Moldy Raspberry Pies because you guys always seem to think that gross-ness is hilarious.

Love, Mommy

Dear Brandon,

Tonight I slipped you the packages of raspberries I didn’t want to pick through. Thank you for helping me. I think you’ll like the pie.

Love you always,


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Yellow, Green, Bwue: an education

I'm starting a new blog:

I need a spot to log my homeschooling brainstorms, links, reading lists, and travails.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

To all the girls I've loved before

Dear Friends,
I love this and want to share it with you. Enjoy!
Love, Carrie

Monday, September 6, 2010

An update, a diagnosis, and a poster child

We've started homeschooling, sort of. We've started in that I'm not sending him to school and we read everyday. We're settling into other things gradually. We joined a co-op, which I think will be good for Luke, but feels like a great sacrifice on my part because there are so many people I don't know, so I feel nervous just thinking about it. I'm only extroverted with people I already know and like, ya know? Or if there's no committment, like at the grocery store.

Then we're starting a homeschool playgroup and piano lessons and some kind of sports activity (karate and/or flag football, swimming later in the fall). On paper, it all sounds wonderful. But putting it into practice might give me hives. I think I might be committment-phobic or co-dependent, probably both.

We ran into a couple from our ward, Bishop and Sis. Cr. at the grocery store. Luke interrupted the conversation to say, "I like science." She asked him, "Have you started school now?" He answered while bobbing his head from shoulder to shoulder, "I homeschool!"  At checkout a little while later, he was smacking himself in the head for fun. I whispered in his ear, "Stop hitting yourself in the head." "Why?" "Because it looks like there's something wrong with you."


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

He's still alive.

And it's a miracle.

Pete surrounded by a least a dozen broken eggs. The mess was all over him, all over the floor, inside the refrigerator, under the refrigerator. I cleaned it up all by myself. It's official; I'm an adult.

And just to seal the deal, later that day:
same kitchen, different boy.


Why every boy needs a backyard and a beningly negligent parent.