Renny’s A-List

At 3.5 years old, Warren has some favorites he holds near and dear to his heart. Here they are, in no particular order:

  • Blue blanket
  • Horton the Elephant
  • The color yellow
  • Spaghetti with meatballs
  • Body Rock” by Moby
  • The Muppets
  • Onions
  • Swimming/water/the beach
  • Animals
  • Applesauce, yogurt, flax seed, and wheat germ (breakfast every morning)
  • Trucks and other construction/work vehicles
  • Cottage cheese and tomatoes
  • Nursery at church
  • His friend Justin
  • Rhyming
Horton and Warren
Horton and Warren

There is no doubt that Renny’s tastes will change. But for now, we’re really loving his devotion to each one of these things.


I love our modern-day technology. Information is readily available. People stay connected almost effortlessly. But I was struck today by a comment made in a NYTimes article about discipline and parenting:

…busy parents juggling work and family demands often are distracted by cellphones, e-mail and other media.

‘We have these new forms of technology which urge us to be working all the time,’ Dr. Barkin said. ‘We are a distracted society. It’s harder to turn off the media and turn on that personal engagement.’

Guilty as charged! I admit I have been caught up in those distractions. In all my efforts to stay on top of what’s cookin’ with my friends and family, or even to be educated about the events of the world, I seem to have been overlooking the need to live in my present moment… with Renny. I don’t ignore him, exactly. But I haven’t been setting aside enough time for us to play, to goof around, to forget my “To Do” list. Between church responsibilities, various errands, and household tasks galore, he hardly ever gets moments of my undivided attention. He often shares me with Facebook, The Joy of Cooking, and Mr. Clean. This multi-tasking is getting me nowhere. I want to spend more time at his eye level, getting down on the ground to really drive that Lego dump truck, answering more than just “uh huh” to his clever comments.

So, today I changed my routine. I let the dishes sit until the end of the day. I didn’t check my email until well past 9PM. It felt good. Here’s to playing rocket ships in space and “cooking” a dinner of play-dough spaghetti fit for a stuffed elephant!

Playing "The Game of Life"
Playing LIFE

One for the Food Storage

We’ve been counseled by church leaders for as long as I can remember to prepare in all ways and to be provident in our living. Food storage is just one area. It’s taken us this long but we’ve finally established a supply that I feel really good about. This summer we were challenged by our Stake Presidency to live as if “Someday” were “Today.” Try to eat only from your food storage supply… don’t buy any gas for the week… use a limited amount of electricity… spend only the cash you have on hand, if any at all. For the first time ever, I felt prepared. After this exercise and the experience with the Gap Fire during July, I can definitely say that I have developed a testimony of following the commandment to “prepare every needful thing” (D&C 109:8).

Despite the popular belief that meals made mostly or entirely from food storage items can be less than appealing, I have found a recipe that begs to differ. I stumbled upon this little winner purely by accident. And I certainly wasn’t searching for food storage recipes, per se. But there it was– on Epicurious, no less!– calling out for me to try it.

Continue reading One for the Food Storage

Warrenism #301

Warren always accompanies us to choir practice every Sunday. He usually hangs around the bass section because that’s where Colin is typically. And wherever Colin is Warren loves to be also.

He eats, plays on the chairs, and otherwise pays absolutely no attention to the music, so it seems. But he’s pretty well-behaved despite being asked to attend, essentially, 4 hours of church. Maybe, we think, by coming with us each week he’ll develop an appreciation for faithfully supporting the Ward choir.

Today–completely unprovoked– he declared, “Three-year-olds don’t need to practice because they’re already good singers.”

Seems the jury is still out on the effectiveness of this lesson…

I Could Resist No Longer

Well, it seemed inevitable. Literally, everyone I know has a blog with fun updates and thoughtful insights. I enjoy reading the changes and happenings in the lives of my dear family and friends. And it’s not that I didn’t want to start one. It’s just that I didn’t want to start one. Chalk it up to laziness, I suppose. I didn’t want to commit to another project I would procrastinate doing.

But then two things happened: 1) I was incredibly inspired by our recent Stake Conference where we were admonished to work harder at strengthening our families and 2) I read a powerful article by Sheri Dew called, “Awake, Arise, and Come Unto Christ,” wherein she challenges us to share the gospel of Jesus Christ more fervently. I think the two concepts go hand in hand.

And so I thought I’d start keeping a better record of the wonderful things about our family and sharing my testimony of The Savior more often. What better way to accomplish these goals than by using this handy, dandy modern technology?

Sealed to Warren
Sealed to Warren 08.04.2005

(Just one of the many experiences we have yet to record…)

The goal is to write down things as they happen and thoughts as they come to mind. I imagine that we’ll be super diligent, at first, but will ultimately teeter off as time goes on. At the very least we’ll plan to post once a week. Baby steps, of course.

I hope you enjoy the outcome…

Reflections on our family's joys & trials