Tuesday, August 18, 2009

On Being - Trina

I've been given a wonderful opportunity to interview Trina @ Our Crazy Life.
What's intriguing is that her and her husband have 6 kids (ranging from 29 - 4 years old) and 7 grandchildren. Even more amazing is that they have been married for 22 years this month.

Trina, you have what many would consider a very challenging, non boring life. Are you content with where you are today?

I, along with everyone else probably, would like to have more money and
not have to struggle, but I have a great family, a job I don’t hate, a
roof over my head and food to eat~~ shouldn’t complain because so many
people don’t.

You were married at 15 (first marriage) why did you choose to marry so young?

I was basically forced. My great grandmother was a typical southern lady
and she ran our family. When I got pregnant she insisted I marry.

Was the end of your first marriage a result of being married so young?

Yes and no. I think if I was older and more mature I would have handled
things better, but I was married to a man (I use that word lightly) that
liked to hit me. I took it for several years, but the day he hit my child
I was out of there and never looked back.

Tell me about your marriage now. How did you meet? Were you hesitant to
marry again after your first marriage ended?

My husband (of 22 years this Friday) was actually on a bowling team with
my ex because they had some mutual friends. He liked the ex as much as I
did thank heavens. After I left my marriage he started coming by to see if
I was OK or needed anything for the kids and I helped him with some papers
he had to write for school. After he asked me to marry him about 40-50
times I gave in. I swore I would never marry again, but I am glad I broke
my own rule.

You are blessed to have a large family. Are any of the kids adopted?

I have 3 bio kids and 3 adopted. My kids are ages 29-4 with only the oldest being a boy so our house is a total hormonal mess at times. I have two daughters and their husbands that live with me. My oldest daughter has MS and a new baby so she helps me with my little ones and I help her when
she is having bad days. It is a lot louder and crazier than it was when
only Jeff and I were home after the last one got married, but when we
decided to adopt they all came back home to help out.

I’m sure there’s never a dull day. Are your kids involved in outside activities?

My kids like to do about everything. The older kids all played softball
and were cheerleaders (girls). They love to ride the ATV’s and go
camping. My little girls are following in the same steps~~ they can’t
wait to be old enough to be cheerleaders and my 6 year old is awesome at
any sport she tries. In fact she beat her whole school (up to 6th grade)
in a basketball shooting contest and she was barely 6. We have a pool and
they like to swim everyday too.

The older girls are all married and 2 have kids. The two that have kids
have also both lost a baby, one at birth and one at 3 months from cancer.

Which child keeps you on your toes?

The one who keeps me on my toes is probably Libby, the baby (for now). She
is constantly trying my patience. We are really a lot alike and maybe that
is some of it. I would love to adopt some more kids, but we will just see
how it goes.

Unfortunately my son has made some bad choices and is currently
incarcerated, but it finally seems he is growing up and doing what he
needs to do to get back on track when he is released.

Being a mom and also a grandma must be the greatest! Tell me about it.

When I found out I was pregnant at 15 the first thing I heard from almost
everyone was “get an abortion”. I NEVER even considered it because I grew
up in a large family and knew I wanted nothing more than to be a mother. I
really enjoyed my kids and growing up with them. I really love being a
grandma, they say that grandkids are the reward for not killing your own
children and I believe that. I try to teach them all one bad habit that
their parent had so they can experience it also. I like jumping on the bed
the most.

What is a typical day like for you?

Up at 5:30 shower and ready for work.
Get the kids clothes ready for the day and be to work by 7:00
I work until 5:30 and then get home about the time my husband has dinner
Then we do homework, baths and bedtime. Then I usually get on the computer
for an hour or so.On weekends and other days off. (I work 4-10 hour days) I play with the kids, do some reviews and PR for the blogs, catch up laundry and grocery
shopping. Sometimes we plan something, but most times we just decide to go
to a movie or something last minute and off we go.

You mentioned that you are a cancer survivor. What age were you diagnosed?
Describe your life then.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 31. I have cancer in
my family so we decided radical was the way to go. My body looks a lot
different, but I am here and breathing so I can't ask for more. My life
then was crazy! I had 4 kids 15 and under and I was terrified of leaving
them. I actually didn’t have a lot of time to be scared after diagnosis
because I was in surgery within days. My biggest fear was the way I would
look afterwards and if my family would be embarrassed by my body-or lack
of parts. I shouldn’t have ever given it a second thought. My girls are
fierce in defending me to anyone who says anything and my husband says he
wouldn’t care what they had to take as long as I am still here with him. I
personally think he was just afraid to have all those kids on his own.

Do you have any fears?

It really sounds stupid, but I am terrified of either sinking on a ship or
crashing in a plane and having a shark eat me. I am not afraid of the
water, the ship or flying- just of the shark. Everyone tells me that if my
plane crashes in the ocean I will most likely be dead already and wouldn’t
feel it, but I don’t want to end up as shark poop.

What is your favorite way to relax and unwind?

I like hanging out in the canyon or on the beach. Anything low key and
everyone just having fun. The beach is probably my favorite but since we
are in Utah I don’t get there much. I also like to read and crochet and on
rainy days I like to curl up in a warm blanket and watch a movie

You live in Utah but yet, aren’t Mormon. Were you raised in a Mormon
family? Do you have religious beliefs that you follow?

I was raised in a Mormon family kind of……my grandparents were very religious on my dad's side and my mom's side were partly Mormon and partly Southern Baptist. My
parents didn’t really push any religion on us. I think I have been to
almost every church at one time or another, mostly in my teenage years. I
like the Catholic church and the Baptist, but I really don’t believe much
in organized religion. I feel I am very spiritual and that religion is
just between me and God. I believe in prayer and I believe in doing what
is right so I think I will make it to Heaven regardless of if I go to
church every week or not. That is not so popular here, but that is just
how it is. I allowed my kids to check out different churches also and they
have all chosen different ones so we really just don’t talk about it
much. I think if people were a little more tolerant of other people's
beliefs this world would be a much nicer place. You don't have to agree,
just understand that you don't and it is OK.

Give me your input on:

Racism~~ I think people who say they don’t see color are liars. We all see color, I just don’t understand why people make such a big deal about it. My grandchildren are like the United Nations and I love them all the same.I think I see color and it is beautiful on each person because that is how God wanted them. I also don’t understand how anyone could hate, hurt,
torture or neglect someone because of the color they are. We are all human
and it should end there!

Blogging~~ I used to think it was stupid and I would never do it, but here I am and totally addicted. I love that there are so many topics and different blogs. I love meeting new people and I am hoping to find some sponsors so I can go to Blogher ‘10

plastic surgery~~ If you think you need it, go ahead. Don’t ever do it because someone else thinks you need it. Be happy in your skin and if it needs altered to make you happy, go for it. Although, I have seen some
women with size 48FFFFF breasts that really should have quit before that
point, but to each their own!

favorite tv shows~~ CSI- all of them, Law and Order- all of them, First
48, most everything on the Comedy Channel and TLC and Discovery channels

favorite books to read—Love true murder books. My family has teased me for
years that I keep reading them so when I kill someone I will know what not
to do from all the people who got caught and were written about

favorite music to listen to—I like all music except opera/classical and heavy metal. Some days, I like a little rock and roll to get me going and others a slow country song can calm me down. I sing them all like I am a rock star though, usually in the car with the windows up so some poor
unsuspecting soul doesn’t go deaf from hearing me

What is the perfect romantic get away for just you and your husband?

We love Jamaica and Cancun Mexico. We go to couples only and Adult resorts
so it is calm on the beach. I love kids, just not on the beach throwing
sand at me while I am relaxing. Nothing more romantic than a walk on the
beach as the sun is setting, listening to the ocean.

What has been your compelling strength when you’ve felt discouraged or

Hmmmm, I really don’t know. I guess just knowing I need to get through it
so I can spend happy times with my family. I am typically a positive
person, (although some would disagree with that and think I am a mean mommy
sometimes), so I try to always see the good so I don’t feel depressed. If
I am sad about something like a death in the family or something personal
like that, I want more than every to spend time with the little ones, they
can always make me smile.

Tell me about your talents and hobbies and interests.

I like to crochet, read, cross stitch. I used to ride horses and ATV’s a
lot before my back was broken, but now I am afraid of hurting it again so
I go for lower impact things. I like camping and traveling. I make
beautiful(if I say so myself) wedding and blessing dresses and I used to
make dress patterns for a major children’s clothing store. I don’t sew as
much anymore because of my back problems and it hurts to sit in one spot
for too long, but I still love it.

I would love to hear about your family traditions….what are some of them
that you enjoy doing together?

We always have Thanksgiving at our house. Have ever since I got married.
It is probably my favorite holiday because we all get together after the
long summer and fall and tell everyone what has been happening. I also
like to do a party on Christmas Eve and have Santa come for the little
kids. We have a friend who has a real beard and belly and he is great. All
the kids believe he is the real thing. We make sugar cookies for Santa and
plates of goodies for all the neighbors. It is always fun when the next
little one is old enough to start helping. I love the way their eyes light
up when they finally get to help.

Thank you, Trina for taking the time to chat with me. One more question...

What defines you?

I like to think I am defined by how I live and raise my
children, my career and marriage, but in reality I think I am defined by
just being happy and comfortable in my skin~ while wishing it was a little
smaller skin at times;-)~~doing what makes me happy and not really worrying about the pettiness and drama that can occur in life. I can't change the world, but I can make my little corner of it wonderful!


  1. What a completely priceless interview. Very well done. I have learned so much from Trina by the great questions you posed for her to answer.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  2. AWE-SOME interview. Very well done. It was great getting to know Trina.
    Thank you!

  3. This is wonderful! I loved learning about Trina--I find her to be warm, funny and full of depth. I loved her answers to racism & plastic surgery. Well-said!