Thursday, November 10, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 10

i am SO very grateful for my friends. i seriously lucked out on this one. there is something special about having a good group of friends.

i have a few amazing friends that i still communicate with on a regular basis from childhood and high school. i have a few from college before my mission, and a few from college after my mission. i have a few from my mission. i have a few from my escapades in texas as a high school spanish teacher, and i have a few from living and working in Arizona.

i've never been one to have a huge group of friends. i have a hard enough time keeping in touch with the few that i actually do. i have always been one to find a few good friends, work on developing those relationships, and then remaining fiercely loyal.

i love my friends. i am so lucky for the ones that i have here in arizona, since they are really all i have here. i also miss the ones terribly that don't live here. in my perfect world we would all be living in a small town by the beach, we would all be disgustingly wealthy, our kids would be best friends, and our world would be... just that... perfect. :) maybe we should all start playing the lottery? ;)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 9

i am grateful for apple. i love my Macbook, i love my iPhone, i love iTunes, i love iPhoto, i love iMovie, i love all the amazing things i can do with technology because of my handy dandy apple products. :) i am an apple girl.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 8

i fell in love with texas in college, when i had the privilege of traveling there to visit my friend Angie and her family. there is an atmosphere in texas that you will never find anywhere else. i honestly don't have the words to describe it, because you just can't... it's something you feel.

i then spent an amazing 18 months there on my mission and fell in love with it even more... the food... the people... the western desert... the lush eastern woods... the spring wild flowers... the gulf coast

after i left my mission and went back to BYU, i decided i wanted to be a Spanish teacher. i attended a teacher's fair and met a wonderful recruiter from Bryan, TX (right next to college station). i was interviewed and hired within two weeks. i went to visit, made some friends to live with, and moved away from EVERYTHING. i had an amazing year grooming young minds and i met my husband.

i miss texas. i would move back in a heartbeat. :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 7

I am grateful for Joseph Smith. I know that he was a prophet of God. I know that he saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. I know that he translated the Book of Mormon, a book that does nothing but testify of our Savior Jesus Christ. I know that he restored the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth, and that we are still led by a living prophet.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 6

Today I'm grateful for this guy.

I am reading a very interesting book right now called "The Peacegiver." The book itself is horribly written, but the message is phenomenal, and gives so much hope. The message is basically that Christ not only paid for our sins, but the sins of others against us. We don't need to hold on to the wrongs that others do against us, because they have already been paid for.

This is a tough pill for me to swallow. To the natural part of me, it seems that by letting things go, you almost excuse bad behavior, but it's different than that. Forgiveness is NOT for the benefit of the trespasser, but rather the person trespassed against. Christ makes up the difference and heals all wounds.

It will be difficult for me to put these lessons into practice, but I hope that as I work hard to become more like Him, that He will help me in my journey.

I love him and I am grateful for him.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 5

Today I am grateful for these two clowns. :)

Joshua Ross Blade and I met back in 1999, in Helaman Halls, during our freshman year at BYU. we have been friends ever since. we have been through a lot together, but have remained friends through it all.

I met Julie in 2007 when we went to Spain. We were roomies, and have been besties ever since. We have been a part of many shenanigans, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I don't know what I would do without these two friends in my life.

Friday, November 4, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 4

Tonight I am grateful for parents.

Elizabeth Stone once said, "Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." Now that I have a child of my own, I understand this perfectly. I have great parents. Of course we had our family issues, as no family is perfect, but my parents did an amazing job. They raised three girls strong in the gospel of Jesus Christ...two of which served missions, two of which were married in the temple, and one of which has started a new generation. my parents worked so hard to make sure that we had everything that we needed, and that we knew how much we were loved.

one of my favorite times as a child was bedtime. my mom told us made up bedtime stories about a girl named "punkin," and then sang us lullabies. after that we got to listen to my dad play the piano until we fell asleep. i always felt so safe and secure. that's the most important thing a parent can give to a child... security and love.

Again, I am grateful for my parents.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 3

tonight i am grateful for sisters

i saw a quote recently that said something to the effect that "sisters are a little piece of childhood that can never be lost." i believe that to be true. what is great about sisters is that you can be at each others' throats one day, and the next you are in each other's corner again.

i have so many memories with my sisters, i don't know how i will pick just one, but i wanted to share one with each of them.

when i was 9 years old, i qualified for the state championships for swimming in Georgia. my mom drove me and krista up (i can't remember if kaycie was with us or not) to atlanta, and taught us some french along the way. we learned the french alphabet, the numbers to ten, and she also was so kind as to teach us, "ferme la grande bouche," which means "shut your big mouth." :) when we arrived in atlanta and mom went into the hotel to check in, i stuck my face in between the two front seats, and like any annoying little sister would, proceeded to repeat over and over, "ferme la grande bouche...ferme la grande bouche...ferme la grande bouche..." i guess krista could only take so much, because eventually i caught a right hook in the nose! it was a pretty great right hook, cause the blood started flowing. i don't remember much of what happened after that, but i imagine she got in quite a bit of trouble. next morning though, she was poolside, cheering me on. :) about ten years later, krista and i were having a conversation on the phone. she was telling me about her classes at BYU, and she was telling me about a paper she had to write. the assignment was to write about three people that she considered her heroes. she told me that one of those heroes in her life was me. she told me that i was a fighter... that no matter how far down into a hole i fell (or dug myself into more often than not), that i never gave up... i never stopped trying to climb back out. that has stuck with me ever since, and no... i never stop trying to climb back to where i know i should be. what's funny though, is that she has always been one of my heroes too. her knowledge and faith has always astounded me. her ability to take the most ordinary things and make them incredible, simply through the words that she can magically put together, has fascinated me. she is THAT special.

i used to torture kaycie...she was the baby after all... but boy did she love me, even when i didn't deserve it. one of the most vivid memories i have of kaycie was also when i was 9 years old, making kaycie 3. santa had brought me a SWEET pink and purple ten speed bike for christmas a few months earlier, and i was out riding around the neighborhood. kaycie wanted to come with me, so she was riding her plastic tricycle alongside my sweet wheels. i decided it would be a great idea (yeah i didn't have such great ideas at nine years old) to get fancy on those sweet wheels. i was CRUISIN down the street, pretty fast i might add, when my foot slipped off the pedal and got caught on the pavement. i LITERALLY went up and over the handle bars, landed on my head, flipped over, and the bike landed on top of me. i couldn't move. kaycie came screeching up to me, and told me she was going to get help. yes, my three year old little sister was going to save the day. i have this clear picture in my mind (remember that i'm laying in the middle of the road with a bike on top of me) of her on top of her little trike, with her little legs pumping as fast as they possibly could go. i call kaycie my nephi. for those of you non-Mormons, nephi is a Book of Mormon prophet. he was the youngest of his brothers, but also the most righteous. he was always steadfast, always immovable, and always faithful. i have had my ups and downs, but kaycie has always been a better example to me than i have been to her. she is so special. there is a running joke in our family, that kaycie is the favorite. she's EVERYONE's favorite. she always has been, always will be. we can't help it... she is THAT special.

yep, my sisters are pretty darn special.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

November is for gratitude - Day 2

Gratitude Day 2:


JJ is a good man. He takes good care of me and Laela. He works hard, and he has a good heart. Of course we have our issues, as every marriage does, but we are committed to making this work. I love him so much, at times only God knows why :), but I love him. I know deep in my heart that we are SUPPOSED to be together forever. I will fight as long as I can to make this a love story to remember.

i can still remember the first time i laid eyes on that handsome man. he literally took my breath away, and i am sure my cheeks turned bright red. i couldn't believe that this man wanted to be with me. it truly was a "love at first sight" experience. i mean, i already knew i loved him, but i needed to see if he made my heart flutter... and BOY did my heart flutter. i thought it would pound out of my chest, and i was afraid my knees would give out. i was so enamored, and i'm so glad he felt the same. i know without a doubt we are meant to be together, and i try to remember that every day.

I love you JJ!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

November is for gratitude

I decided that this month I would really like to focus on what I am grateful for. Hopefully I can do one each day... baby willing.

Day #1

I don't think it's ANY surprise that my #1 would be... wait for it...


I cannot imagine my life without this peanut. She is turning from a baby to a little girl right before my eyes, and though I can't stand it that she is my little baby anymore, I am excited for what the future with bring. She is stubborn, sassy, and confident. I love her more than I have words to express.

i remember the first time i saw her. i'm kinda ashamed to say it, but she was so icky i kinda wanted them to take her away and clean her up! haha! but, then when they did take her away and she wouldn't cry, i wanted nothing more than for them to give her back. i know she needed them to help her, as she had inhaled some fluids and was having trouble breathing, but i wanted her and needed her. she had been a part of me for nine months, and then suddenly she wasn't. in an instant she was no longer safe and secure. she now needed me more than ever before. when they gave her back, i felt a love i never knew i could feel before. i couldn't take my eyes off of her. i was overwhelmed at what was ahead for me and this tiny little baby girl, but i knew that together we would make it just fine. She. Is. Everything.

So, on this Day #1 of November 2011, I am grateful for my daughter.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

loooooooooooong stretch

so for teachers, the stretch between labor day and fall break is the longest and most torturous. it just drags and drags and drags. once you get over that hump, then it's smooth sailing. only a month til thanksgiving, three weeks after that is christmas, followed by MLK day, presidents' day, spring break, then the push til the end of the year. i am SO ready for fall break. i am exhausted, over the 500 excuses i hear every day about why homework isn't done, and if i never hear "i don't get it" one more time, i might be the happiest teacher ever. ugh, even i don't want to be around my bad attitude. :)

on a happier note, Laela has mastered standing for however long she wants. she is now working on trying to dance while standing, and taking more than two steps without face planting into a piece of furniture, door frame, wall, or floor. she started clapping yesterday, signs "milk, more, help, up, hi/bye," and is working on "kitty and love." Lae is actually starting to show interest in more than boobie, and gobbles up anything i give her (except baby food). her favorites are grated pears, graham crackers, and string cheese. she also loves sweet potato fries. she is starting to get trim and fit since she runs around so much, and her weight gain has slowed. she was weighed and measured today and is a whopping 22.5 lbs, and just over 28 inches long. poor baby is also working on 4 teeth... count them... FOUR teeth right now. makes for some interesting nights.

funny story for you. tonight she blew out her diaper right before her bath, so i cleaned her all up and plopped her on the floor to go draw said bath. silly mommy for thinking that since she had JUST taken a diaper off her baby that she was safe with a naked kid running around for a few minutes.... NOT SAFE! she was cruising along her crib when she stops, looks at me, and starts PEEING! she is totally intrigued by it and watches. then she looks up at me and starts laughing! i know i shouldn't have, but i burst out laughing and cleaned it up as quick as i could. at least i know she didn't pee in the bathtub. :) gosh i love that girl...

now she's sleeping like the sweet angel that she is... for now... :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

this day needed to be over as soon as it started...

seriously, one of the WORST days ever. i started it by waking up late. I was frantically trying to get ready when the baby decided to wake up early. she and i stumbled through our morning together and ran out of the house about 15 minutes late. i noticed that my battery was a little weak this morning when i started the car, but didn't think much about it. we have known it needed to be replaced for a few days, but thought we had another few days to get it done. i get to the babysitter's house and take Laela in, give her a quick kiss and run out the door because i'm already about ten minutes late for work. i turn the key and hear a "groan... click click click..." yep, dead. at this point i'm thinking it might be time for me to throw in the towel and take a personal day. however, my kids are already a couple days behind and i don't want to get even further behind because i decided to curl up in bed with my baby all day.

so i go get jenny and tell her my battery is dead. to make things worse i had pulled up in the driveway behind where her car is parked in their garage. we somehow finagle the van out of the garage and go to work putting the jumper cables on. hers aren't marked with black or red and we can't find the positive and negative signs, so we guess and hope.... yep we got it wrong, so as we are trying to put the cables on my battery, sparks start flying! we put it on the right way, get me started, and i get to school about two minutes before the bell rings. i teach all my classes before i realize that my lady time decided to pay a visit and i was not prepared. oh, and i forgot my lunch. it was just a bad day all around.

God bless my sweet husband though. i called him and told him what was going on, and he dropped everything to come help me. he came and got my battery out of my car, took it to the dealership to buy a new one. he brought it back (along with my lady supplies and lunch), installed it, and even moved it into a nice shady spot right by the door. in fact, i was right next to the car on my way home when i realized i had locked my keys in my office.... yep. then i got in my car and realized i was on empty. again... bad day any way you look at it.

here's to hoping tomorrow treats me a little better!

Monday, September 19, 2011

funny sundays and rough mondays

it is a rare evening that i don't have a stack of 200 papers to grade and no planning to do for the next day, so i decided to celebrate the occasion with a blog. :)

this weekend my bestie was in town, and we had a blast. that blast however, included not much in the sleep department. friday night i was up til 2 and then up at 6 when Lae woke up, saturday i was up til midnight then up at 6 with Lae, then sunday i was up until midnight planning for the week and again up at 6 for work. this afternoon it really hit me hard, so we had a rough mommy day. i am a little ashamed to say it, but i laid on the couch with my eyes closed all afternoon while Lae played with her toys. i barely talked to her, barely played with her, and i even brought her to bed with me and nursed her to sleep so i could get a 20 minute cat nap to help ME make it to bedtime. i decided that i would make it up to her tomorrow with a trip to the park or the pool. it's good that kids are so forgiving.

Lae is quite the hit at church. she is very social (just don't try to take her from me), and loves to make eyes at people. she loves watching kids and if she doesn't have her paci in her mouth she will have full on babble conversations with the people in the row behind us. she's also stinkin cute so everyone just loves making her smile and laugh. this week in relief society was HILARIOUS! she woke up from a nice nap with about 40 minutes left in the meeting, and she decided that she would like to be down on the floor. i put her down and grabbed a handful of puffs and her sippy to keep her occupied. she was sitting in the middle of the floor in the back, but there were about ten or so ladies that were more interested in her than the lesson. she was putting on a show too! she was doing her little head shake, waving at everyone, and showing off how she could feed herself puffs. at one point in the lesson, the teacher was having quite the moment. she was telling a very personal story, it was very quiet in the room, she was very emotional and even crying. Lae decides that this is the perfect moment to let out a belly laugh. Of course we all start laughing (as silently as possible), with one lady even turning red in the face. :) Oh how i love my little peanut and her funny little personality!

Saturday, August 20, 2011


so i've decided i REALLY need to start blogging more. Lae is almost EIGHT... count them... EIGHT months old, and i have hardly captured her first year of life so far. it's really hard being a working mom, especially now that she notices that i'm gone. when i'm home she refuses to nap and wants to be with me ALL the time, so i basically can't get anything done from when i get home until when she goes to bed. then, when she goes to bed i usually have to get some work done before i go to bed... plus she is usually up a couple hours after i put her down anyways.

long story short... mama is exhausted.

anyways, all that being said, i wouldn't change it for the world. she is seriously the best thing that has every happened to me. she is teaching me a lot about myself, showing me my strengths and weaknesses, and opening my heart to loving in a way i never knew was possible.

this is a picture of Laela Carolina on her blessing day. My parents had flown in from South Carolina, my sisters and bro-in-law drove down from Utah, and JJ's best friend and wife had driven across the valley to share our special day with us. She was only a week and a half old, but we wanted to make sure that we were able to bless her with everyone in town.

i was kind of a mess still because i was only 12 days post partum, and it was a very emotional time. i don't remember anything about that day (except that JJ almost dropped her after her blessing!) so i am so glad my family was there, as krista had taken notes for me. She emailed them to me a short while ago, and this is what was said...

Blessing of Laela Carolina Barksdale
January 23, 2011
Given by her father Johnathan Barksdale Jr.
Priesthood surrounding her: Mark Maurer (Grandfather), Alex Foster (Uncle), Fetu Pauga, Daniel Cooper, Jerad Everton, Kason Ashe, and Lucius

We give this priesthood blessing to guide this bundle of joy.
Father please bless her to be a light of many and bless the hearts of many.
That she'll be guided by the Spirit in that and prayers.
That her family and friends will support her in all she does emotionally, physically, spiritually, and mentally.
That she'll gain a testimony and express to others her love for Thee.
That her trials and tribulations will be learning experiences.
Please bless her with the ability to rely on Thee and be steadfast and hold fast to the iron rod as others in her life hold to the iron rod.
Bless her to marry a worthy priesthood holder and bless this world with children just as she is a blessing to our family.
Bless her with health and a sound mind.
And to know that all things are possible through Thee.

it has been an amazing 8 months so far, and i look forward to many, many more. Here's to getting caught up on the blog! :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

one half of one year = Laela!

what was once this...

... has become this...

... and i can't stand it!!!

little miss laela carolina is 6 months old today. i don't know when it happened, or where the time went... but it happened, and it went! this precious little girl has captured my heart in a way that i never knew was possible. it's been hard, but i've honestly enjoyed every minute. i've loved learning how to put myself last... after my daughter, after my husband. i've loved watching her personality take shape. i've loved watching her discover her hands, her feet, her voice, her surroundings. i now know what the word *joy* actually means.

i can't wait for more... love you lae :)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

the best feeling in the world

there is nothing in the world that feels as good as this :)

Friday, July 1, 2011

obsessions with abbreviations...

so today i was on BBC on the BF board and they were talking about MOTN wakings, BFing, and LCs. then i went to the working moms board and they were talking about how they love being WOHMs, though there are a few of us that would rather be SAHMs. i went over to my birth board and they were talking about how big or small their LOs are... some have DDs and some have DSs. the ladies were also talking about their DHs, SILs and their MILs... some had not so nice things to say. there was one thread that started the drama llama and we all popped some popcorn and got some sodas to watch it unfold. i then stopped by the sleep board where we talked about NWs, NEs, EBTs and how our LOs get so OT sometimes! :)

if you have any idea what i'm talking about then you also frequent the forum at, though many of you may not. it has been quite the obsession since Lae was born. i credit the breast feeding board for getting me through the first 11 weeks of breast feeding Laela. there we talk about MOTN (middle of the night) feedings, BFing (breastfeeding), and LCs (lactation consultants). i credit the working moms board for getting me through the first couple weeks back at work. there are some ladies there that love being WOHMs (work out of the home moms) and others that really wish they could be SAHMs (stay at home moms). i love my birth board (those of us that had babies in January 2011) for the drama and silly things we talk about. it's also really fun to talk about what our little ones (LOs - DD = daughter, DS = son) are doing. we chat about our DHs, SILs and MILs (husbands, sisters in law, mothers in law). there is a lot of drama though and it's kinda funny. i also LOVE the sleep board. we talk about night wakings (NW), nap extensions (NE), early bed times (EBT), and how to tell if our babies are overtired (OT). there is an extensive list of acronyms in the help section. my first few days were interesting to say the least as i navigated my way through the interesting language that we use as we correspond. it seems silly i know, but it's amazing to talk to and get advice from women that know exactly what you are going through. if you are TTC (trying to conceive), PG (pregnant), or PP (post partum) then is the place for you! happy posting! :)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

recent happenings

so life has been pretty interesting in Laela- land... that's what i now refer to as my life, because let's face it... it's all about her. :) school ended the last week of may, and Lae and i went to South Carolina for a couple weeks. she L-O-V-E-D being around her grands and aunties, and it was nice to get back to work on the boat.... where i pump in a 3 ft. x 4 ft. closet that isn't tall enough for me to sit up straight. it's kind of amazing that i get to sit on an upside-down bucket, hunched over to pump, but i'll do anything for my girl.

(pumping closet)

she and i came back out to arizona to visit daddy for two weeks and it's been so nice to have our family back together. we fly back sunday to SC where we will stay for four more weeks until school starts for me. it will be nice to see the family again, and hopefully get up to NC to see JJ's fam-bam.

i honestly cannot believe that it's been almost 6 months since Laela was born. That's half a year already! She is so stinkin cute and i just can't stand it! she babbles incessantly, she rolls both ways, she sits up pretty much unassisted, and she loves to "stand up" (obviously with us holding her). she is so friendly and will smile for just about anyone, and she rarely fusses. she loves new places and new things, and she loves to watch people. she knows her name and will turn to look at you when you say it. she has also started to raise her hands up to ask to be picked up. i can't believe that my tiny (yes i know she was never "tiny") baby is now 20 pounds and so smart already!! i just love her so much! :)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

dear laela...

you need to stop growing up so fast! i mean, it is SO much fun now that you are smiling and talking, and i am excited to see how your adorable personality develops, but seriously, i miss my little cuddle bug. sometimes you want to stretch out in your crib instead of sleeping on my chest. sometimes you want to be down playing with toys instead of staring at my face. sometimes i forget how little you were. even though sometimes i wish i could stop time and just keep you little forever, i know that i just need to enjoy every moment that i have. i love you! :)

p.s. mommy has been a little busy at work the last couple months, but summer is coming, so the blog will be updated with all things laela! :)

Sunday, February 27, 2011

40 hours of labor = LOVE

so the name of my blog, "dirty laundry," has taken on a whole new meaning. why you ask? well because that is my life now... dirty baby laundry! if it's not spit up, then it's poop. if it's not poop, then it's spit up. :) i love my girl though, so it's ok.

wait karly... did you mean 14 hours of labor instead of 40? cause 40 hours would be insane, right? um, yes, right... it would be insane, but that is the honest truth... i was in labor with peanut for 40, count them, 40 hours.

i don't remember all the details, and i won't bore you, but it was not pleasant. we knew that we wanted Laela on her due date of January 11, 2011... not only because it's a cool date, but because it is my Grandma Sally's birthday. My doctor said we could induce, so we did. I went to the hospital at 3 am on the 10th, they started inducing me around 4 am, and at 8:10 pm on the 11th, little Laela Carolina Barksdale came into the world. it was not an easy path for my sweet girl. we were a little afraid we were going to have to end up with a c-section. i got stuck at 5 cm and then again at 8 cm.... at 8 she was also face up and not dropping at all, and i was given an hour before the doctor was going to do a c-section. we prayed and prayed for the next 45 minutes or so, and all of a sudden i felt her flip over. when the doctor came in 15 minutes later to check i was completely dilated, she had flipped over, but she still hadn't dropped far enough, so i was given another hour... but only because laela was a champ through it all and never went into distress on the monitors. more prayers were said, and when she came back an hour later laela had dropped a little bit. not all the way, but enough that the doctor was going to let me push to see if she would come out... if not, c-section it was. i pushed for 45 minutes, and out she came. 8 lbs 11 oz, 20 1/2 inches. it was a little nerve wracking the first few minutes because she wouldn't cry. she was a little blue because she had inhaled a bunch of fluid as she was coming out so they had to suction that out. once they did, she still didn't cry... just a couple yelps and that was that.

she was beautiful and just perfect.... definitely worth the 40 hours. :)

well, i'll leave it here for now and post more later about how the last seven weeks has gone... it's had its ups and downs for sure, but it's been well worth it

Monday, January 3, 2011

Day 19-Nicknames you have and why you have them

oh this will be a fun one because i LOVE my nicknames!

here they are, in no particular order:


i am pretty sure karkar was given to me by my dad. he would say to me when i was younger... while thinking he was so clever and funny... "karkar, go get in the car car." and then we would laugh and it was great...

kar is obviously a shortened version of karkar, and this is what most of my friends call me. i love it...

karbar is josh's nickname for me, and i have no idea where it came from. one day he just started calling me karbar...

karls and karlisha were given to me while working at the bank last year. two of the other tellers came up with them. sam called me karls (and still does) just to be cute, and chelsea (who is african american) decided that since i had a black husband i had some street cred, entitling me to a "black" name... hence karlisha...

karl is my sister nickname. no one besides my sisters calls me this and i kinda like it that way. when you are as close to your sisters as i am you should have a little special something that only you share.

so there you have it... the ins and outs of my nicknames :)