Friday, May 30, 2008

Playing Catch-Up

I know I've been unusually quiet these past couple days - life just continues to be busy. No "funny business" today, just a recap of the past week.

First off, I want to share a pic of the grad and his proud mama (click for a larger view) Hard to believe that the little boy I met 12 years ago is now all grown-up... and his sister, the flower girl at our wedding, graduates next year! Time to get all sniffly and nostalgic :) Seriously, though, it was a nice service and the parents of all the graduates hosted a very nice luncheon/party afterward.

We had a rather quiet Memorial Day, although the "simple" home project we had planned ended up being a real pain in the patoosie. We have a room added to the back of the house, which includes a closet with our washer and dryer (a very nice bonus, as the washer was originally in the kitchen but no dryer, so many of these style homes would add a dryer in the garage). We have bifold doors on the closet which had been broken numerous times - mainly from the kiddos playing hide & seek. Anyway, the doors themselves were falling apart, plus I could no longer open/close them properly. We headed off to the orange warehouse to pick up doors - simple task, right? Well, we got the right width. But they were too tall. And the doors were hollow, so it wasn't a simple trim job, either. OK, that's finally done. Hubby hung them, only to discover that the right one didn't open all the way due to the trim on the wall. Pried off the trim, cut it down, and nailed it back up. But the problems are even bigger on the left side - these doors are much thicker than the previous ones, and the recessed corner in closet for the rails isn't big enough. And that's when we learned what a hack job the closet was. We had sheetrock with sheet metal, all with a nice thick layer of plaster. It wasn't pretty, and the fix involved utility knives, a crowbar, a chisel, and eventually the router being taken right to the wall. Sigh. And after all THAT, we discovered that the extra thickness meant that there wasn't room to open the dryer. Seriously, it was just one stinkin' thing after another. Oh, and did I mention that we had company coming for dinner, and our back room was now covered in a nice layer of sawdust? It all worked out, though, and we even managed to share a lovely meal with a couple from church.

I had my "mommy morning" on Tuesday, so ran errands unfettered. A friend and I prepared some little goodie bags for our last MOPS meeting. We had another family over on Wednesday night for a meal of campfire pies, hot dogs, and marshmallows. Have to get a few more fires in before we put the pool up (we use the dirt circle from the pool as our fire pit area). Painted some shelves last night. And hubby is having the guys from work over tonight for "Meat on a Stick" night. We may put the pool up this weekend... still not quite sure.

* * * * * * * *

I also wanted to draw your attention to a great post on the "Mommy Wars" over at Making Home. Our son will be starting Kindergarten in the fall. At - gasp - public school. We happen to feel pretty strongly that we can make the most impact on our world by actually being involved (as opposed to protecting our children by homeschooling or even attending Christian school). Boy oh boy, is that ever a hot topic! I really appreciated this post as a reminder to let the scriptures guide our behavior... and I found it convicting, too, as I certainly am guilty of judging other moms.

Monday, May 26, 2008


Thank you to all who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

How very blessed we are to live in this nation (however flawed it may be).

Happy Memorial Day

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Sudsy Fun

It was a gorgeous day, and time to wash "mommy's" car! We all had a ball and actually managed to get the job done. D was pretty conscientious, but A was mostly interested in playing with the bubbles. Request for help: Anyone know how to deal with streaky car windows? I tried 2 different glass cleaners (1 with heavy ammonia) and even straight rubbing alcohol, but we still have nasty streaks. What else can we try?!?

Other Random Updates:

* We have a robin nesting in one of our trees; I literally can check up on her just by opening the front door. No eggs yet, but she was diligently sitting today (even the sound of me vacuuming the car didn't scare her off!)
* Last night after the kids had gone to bed, I went grocery shopping and bought a watermelon (among other things). This morning, when our son saw it he gave it a hug. He reallllllly likes watermelon!
* We spent a few hours pulling weeds this afternoon - I'm clearing some space and we're going to plant acorn squash and pear tomatoes. NO, IT'S NOT A GARDEN! But the kids are seriously excited about growing their own squash. :)
* I got my first mosquito bite of the year yesterday. Yes, the awful pests have returned.
* The kids are no longer allowed to use liquid soap to wash their hands. We've gone through a ridiculous amount in the past month or so, so we now have a bar of Dial by the sink. Note to self: remember to put out the good B&B soap when friends come over.
* We played outside yesterday afternoon, blowing bubbles. The kids were chasing them around the yard and popping them - pretty normal, right? Well, our little maniac took it to the next level when he announced he needed "a big hammer" and proceeded to hunt down the bubbles with a crouquet mallet. Sorry, no pics - I was laughing too hard!

We're heading up for our nephew's graduation tomorrow, and then on Monday we're playing it pretty low key - we have some friends coming over for dinner, but that's about it. We normally put our pool up over Memorial Day weekend, but the nights are still too chilly. Maybe next weekend!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday Funny

Thinking of Having Kids? Try this 11 step program to prepare!

Lesson 1
1. Go to the grocery store.
2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home.
4. Pick up the paper.
5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2
Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...
1. Methods of discipline.
2. Lack of patience.
3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
4. Allowing their children to run wild.
5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.
Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3
A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...
1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)
2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.
3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.
4. Set the alarm for 3AM.
5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.
6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.
8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.
9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out...
1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains
2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed, then rub them on the clean walls.
4. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.
5. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons.
How does that look?

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.
Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.
1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.
3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.
4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 7
Go to the local grocery store. Take the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child with you (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 8
1. Hollow out a melon.
2. Make a small hole in the side.
3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.You are now ready to feed a nine-month-old baby.

Lesson 9
Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street, Dora, Diego, the Wiggles, and the Disney Princesses. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 10
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 11
Start talking to an adult of your choice.. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 10 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Family Time

Well, we had a really nice time with Mom and C. Thankfully the weather was beautiful on Thursday, so we could play outside (and find green things to attach to noses), and later in the evening the kids learned how to play war.

The Memorial Service on Saturday went well, too, but I must say I'm glad it's over. There were a lot of family and friends to catch up with, and our daughter was definitely a bit overwhelmed by the crowd (and consequently was super clingy). It truly was a time of rejoicing, though, and I pray that the reflections on Dad's life helped plant some seeds for others...

Lastly, a bit of springtime - the azaleas and dogwoods are blooming!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Rainy Day Activity

What to do when it's drizzly and miserable outside? Why, spin yourself silly on the computer chair, of course!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Checking in and signing off...

Things are going to be pretty quiet on the blog for the next few days - my MIL and niece arrive this evening and will be staying with us for a few days, and then we have Dad's Memorial Service on Saturday. We'd really appreciate your prayers!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


I realized yesterday (thanks for the comment, Dapoppins!) that I never made mention of Mother's Day. So first off, Happy Mother's Day to all of you lovely moms! Hope you had a wonderful day, and that your family took some time to love on you.

Me? Well, we celebrated last weekend. Hubby had asked what I wanted, and I knew about a local church doing an all-day crop for National Scrapbook Day. So what would I like? A day off from playing mommy and 12 glorious hours of playing with paper! So last Saturday, I slept in, then headed downstairs for pancakes and bacon prepared by hubby. And then I was off! I didn't make a single page (I'm all about cardmaking, and was actually dubbed "The Card Girl") but I still had a ball. And I even won a very nice basket full of goodies. Things have been - and will continue to be - quite hectic, so it was a welcome respite.

Lastly, a few thoughts on the most excellent woman that we love to hate, found in Proverbs 31. Come on, admit it - there are times that you've wanted to just rip that page out of your Bible so that you won't be reminded of all your shortcomings (OK, so that plan wouldn't work very well since there are plenty of other passages that do the same - thank God for His amazing grace and mercy, though!) Anyhoo, just wanted to share a few thoughts (these are a random mix of sermons, ladies' talks, college classes, etc. so not much of it is original!) This is an overview of a godly woman's life, not a snapshot of her day. There is *NO* way that all of that is happening at once! And as for her children arising and calling her blessed - I don't think that's going to be happening with young kids (or teens, for that matter :) And don't forget that she had servants! How much more could I accomplish with servant girls of my own?!?

But seriously, it is a wonderful passage. I want my husband to have confidence in me, knowing I am bringing him good. And the kids should be taking note of my planning and work ethic, as well as my willingness to help others. So while I don't read through the passage like a checklist, I do make it a point to read it every couple months just as a reminder of the overall role I can and should be playing as wife and mother.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Weekend Recap

Well, we managed to have a birthday party! I was getting a bit worried about the weather as it had rained all day Friday and it was really overcast Saturday morning (with a forecast of sprinkles throughout the day), but it cleared off so we were able to mostly keep things outside... I forgot to do the little activity and give out goodie bags, though. Talk about scatterbrained mama! We still had a ball, though... Lots of food (hot dogs with all the fixings), playing, roasted marshmallows, sticky faces, giggling, and oohs and aahs. (You can click on any of the photos for a larger view)

Bad news yesterday, though: both kiddos were running fevers, so we ended up not going to church. Neither were violently ill, just whiny and rather clingy. They seem better today, but we're still laying low. I still have some cleaning up to do, preparing for company later this week, and will do a grocery run tonight.


Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Friday!

So if April showers bring May flowers.... Do May showers bring June brides?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

House Happenings

Thought I'd share some recent cuteness. Fuzzball adores Woody, although she calls him "Parker" (which is how she said "Partner" after she first saw Toy Story, and somehow it stuck). She's starting playing with barbies a bit more, too; she never was really into baby dolls, but adores people figures of all sorts. Yesterday she was carrying them around like this... guess she's going to be a proponent of baby-wearing :) Oh, and like that bruise on her cheek? She tripped and banged into the base of the computer chair. Ouch! Someday she's going to be bruise free for a couple days in a row and I'm actually going to get some nice pics!

This pic is from just a couple minutes ago - she and her brother are "playing house." My favorite quote of the morning:
"Hon, where did you put the Diet Coke?"
Hmmm... wonder where they've heard that one?!?

No pics of big brother, but you can be sure I'll have quite a few soon - we're having his birthday party this weekend. The nice thing about delaying it six weeks is that we can actually be outside, and roasting marshmallows has been added to the list of festivities.

And just to add something of "value" to today's post, thought I'd share my favorite go-to breakfast recipe. I like to serve it when we have overnight guests, and it's also great to take to MOPS.

Breakfast Casserole

1 can crescent rolls (I generally use the reduced fat variety)
8 eggs
1/2 c milk
breakfast meat (sausage, bacon, pork roll, whatever!)
shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350. Unroll crescent rolls and press into bottom of 9x13 baking pan. Sprinkle pre-cooked meat over the dough. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs & milk, then pour over meat. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes, or until eggs are completely set.

For our little family, I'll often make it in my round baking dish (love that Pampered Chef stoneware!) with 6 eggs and 1/3 c milk with a brown & serve sausage. You can also add veggies (we like broccoli or spinach). I've also added onion, garlic, basil, oregano, chopped tomato & Italian sausage to make a hearty lunch. Yum!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Requesting help from veteran moms!

We had an interesting situation arise here earlier this morning - one of our daughter's dress-up skirts was cut, and both kids said the other one did it. Obviously, one of them was lying (yes, I am a master of the obvious! :) so I didn't want to get carried away with punishing the innocent one. So how would you handle this?

What I did: both kids went to time out, both continuing to proclaim the others' guilt. I spoke with each of them separately, reminding them that lying is wrong and makes God sad. They both sat and occasionally tried to convince me that it was other one - I told them I didn't want to hear anything until one of them was ready to say, "I did it." After about 15 minutes, the fuzzball 'fessed up (which I had suspected, as the cuts were awfully jagged for her skilled bro to have done it). I had her apologize to her brother for getting him in trouble, and then he got to choose one of her toys to become "his" for the day, plus she was then disciplined for both cutting and lying about it.

I know this is only going to get harder. Too bad I don't have Solomon on speed dial...

Friday, May 2, 2008

Friday Funny

I think I met this guy at Wal-Mart earlier this week!

Thursday, May 1, 2008


I need a dress. And well, frankly I don't enjoy clothes shopping much right now. Those cute little empire waisted, "floaty" numbers look adorable on the size 2 mannequins and teenagers, but transform this short, overweight 34 year old into a lumpy, dowdy mess. Oh, and have I mentioned that I was hoping to find something that would work for both a memorial service and a wedding? (I know, not exactly setting myself up for success...) I've been looking around for a couple weeks now, whenever I have spare moments and find myself in a store that has clothing - but nothing has caught my eye. I decided to get serious in my search, so I headed out on Monday evening, optimistic that I'd find something. I tried on over 20 items. Many of those were, "I'm not quite sure about this one, but maybe it will look better on." Ha! I did discover that those shiny bright prints do a lovely job highlighting the silver strands in my hair, though :) I was even open to a blouse that would coordinate with a skirt I already had, but just couldn't find anything.

I headed out again on Tuesday night; I got a later start than I had planned, but was hopeful as two different ladies at MOPS that morning had recommended TJ Maxx. I made three treks to the fitting rooms, and emerged with 1 "this will work if I can't find anything else" dress. Debated about purchasing it, but decided to just go ahead and put it back. It was 8:40 at this point, so rather than going to the other store on my list (which was 10 minutes away, and closed at 9:00), I headed to Wal-Mart to pick up the spark plug that hubby needed. Well, as I pulled into the parking lot, I saw "Dots" a couple stores down from Wal-Mart. Now I've walked by this store several times, but never actually gone in as the items I could see through the window just didn't seem like my style. They were still open for another 15 minutes, though, so I figured I'd take a quick look around. And surprisingly, I found 2 things that were worthy of trying on: a purple wrap dress, and a B&W print. Wrap dress was OK, but I wasn't thrilled. At this point, the sales clerk has chirpily reminded me that they'll be closing soon, so I hurriedly pull the 2nd dress over my head. Wow. I actually like this one! Cap sleeves. Squared neckline with just a bit of shirring (and no, I don't look 6 months pregnant). Hangs nicely, and has a bit of sheen without crossing over into scary, shiny land. Ding Ding Ding - we have a winner!! And it's been marked down to $20! I plunk down my cash, finish up at Wal-Mart, and head on home. Wonder of wonders, hubby even likes it!!

It's definitely not something I would normally have been drawn to, but I am happy with it. And I already know how I'll be accessorizing: simple black cardigan and flats for the memorial, funky black beaded necklace and heels for the wedding. All of which I already own. Hooray! And here's a little sneak peek:

And now back to my knit shirt and jeans. Hey, they are stain free!