Thursday, December 20, 2007

We're On Our Way

We are on our way to see Bob's family for Christmas. We will be gone for about a week but when we get home my mom is going to be here for a visit so who knows when I will get back to my posts...I will be on a bloggy break for the next couple of weeks.

Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas! (Like how I made it more festive with the word coloring? :) LOL

I leave you with this...check it out and remember what Christmas is really all about.

Yep...


...All he wants for Christmas is his 2 front teeth!

Luke pulled out his second front tooth a couple of days ago...and from the look of it, not a moment too soon! The new one was already poking through under the baby one.

Moo Part III

Some of you may remember my Moo post from when we first moved here...how lovely it was to have cows mooing in my back yard instead of sirins blairing and horns honking. Well, I may have been mistaken. It seems now, about once a week or so, I get wakened in the middle of the night by the sound of moo. I've never actually gone out to hear it outdoors...who wants to go out in the middle of the night in their PJ's in the middle of the night to investigate a abnormally loud "moo"? Sometimes it's so hight pitched I think it's one of the kids crying that woke me up and then I sit there and listen just to realize that it's only our friendly neighborhood stock yard. So I sit there and listen, just trying to block it out and not to imagine what all the racket could possibly be all about....

And that smell that I talked about not being so bad? Well, it's worse now that it's winter...one would think that with the frozen p00 it wouldn't be so bad but one forgets that occasionally here in the frozen white northern prairie, the temp. gets above freezing and that frozen p00 turns a rather pungent stench that can be smelled for miles...or blocks in our case.

Oh yes, I think I have changed my mind about my "Moo".

Monday, December 17, 2007

It Makes my Stomach Churn!

Just thinking about all the time that Bob has spent in hotels over the last few years when he was driving a charter bus just makes me grateful that he never got more than the stomach flu or a cold when he was traveling...now it makes me wonder if it wasn't from the glasses at the hotels he was staying at! There were several times that he would bring sick passengers home that weren't sick when they started and even once that I got sick on a trip with him!

If you travel a lot or know someone who does, you might want to check out the title link and make sure you watch the follow up video too!

Jamie, you might want to bring your own glasses with you on your trip to the UP to use in your hotels along the way!

Jozie's Gift

Jozie has a friend who lives a few doors down from us. She's a tiny thing that's in Kindergarten and she loves to play outside with Jozie. In the nicer weather - even when it was cold with no snow - you could count on a little knock on the door and know it was her with her smiling little face asking if Jozie could come out and play. An adorable little girl to say the least! Jozie looked forward to it everyday and most days worked hard at her school work to get it done before her friend got here to play.

Things have changed though since we got snow. Her little friend has only been here one day and she came with only a little winter coat to ask if Jozie could come out and play. Jozie was having a bad day so I had to say no...I always feel so bad saying no because the little girl goes away without her pretty smile. Since then, Jozie has been out almost everyday in the afternoon with her other friends to play and goes to ask her little friend to come out only to be told no.

Last night Jozie came to me with an excitement she could hardly contain. She told me that she knew what she wanted to give her little friend for Christmas. I was a little afraid to ask her what that was, being that I don't even have the money to get her much for Christmas, not to mention every one of her friends. But, so as not to upset her or make her feel bad, I asked her what and she told me that her friend doesn't have any outside cloths to play in the snow and she wanted to give her friend her extra ones - snow pants, gloves, mittens, a scarf, and 2 hats, along with some homemade rock candy that we made for Christmas - she doesn't use them anyway. I was proud of her for making such a loving decision. Though her extra show clothes are used and the snow pants are hand-me-downs, what could I say? She feels bad that we don't have any boots that would fit her - and to be honest, the snow pants will probably be far too big but still wearable - but she is excited to give her "gift" none the less. I am so proud of her for thinking of her little friend, Jozie has such a big heart for giving. I just hope that her little friends' parents don't take it the wrong way and understand that it was all Jozie's doing just because she wants to play with her little friend again.

Menu Plan Monday

I just have to say that I haven't forgotten about my weekly menu plan, I just have taken a temporary leave from writing them because of all of the company I have had and the traveling we have been doing. It's not that I haven't really been planning meals, I just haven't planned them for a specific day - just depending on what pops up that day with family being here what I have time to make.

I will try and resume my weekly menu after the first of the year when things settle down and we aren't so busy.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Giants and Unicorns

We just finished The Li0n, The Witch, and The Wardr0be by C.S. Lewis yesterday and we plan on watching the moving again this afternoon to see what differences we can find. I'm sure there are a few! :) These are the pictures that the kids drew that were inspired by the story. Notice Jozie's rainbow - I don't remember that in the story but what 8-year-old girl can draw a unicorn without a rainbow? (she got her talent for drawing from me, can't you tell?!) LOL Luke went as far as to put a little man under the giants foot that he was stepping on in the Battle. He was enthralled by this character and found his coming back to life from stone quite comical! :)

Jozie's Unicorn


Luke's Giant Rumblebuffin

Friday, December 14, 2007

My Favorite Royal Ranger


This week our church had the Royal Ranger Counsel of Achievement on Wednesday night. Luke was the proud recipient of his Antelope Badge and his Royal Rangers Kids Badge plus he also got his Rangers vest. He was one proud boy! And we are 2 proud parents. He was so excited about it he wants to start working on badges at home.

The picture isn't that great - again...something about that flourescent lighting in there that just doesn't like to give good pictures! Oh well, Bob got the whole thing on video again so maybe that will help. The poor kid looks like he's being reprimanded instead of rewarded in that picture! :)

Found II

I got a call from my mom yesterday and she kindly informed me that she reads my blog, "Hi, Mom! Thanks! Tell others at church if they ask about me!" :)

She said she remembered reading my first lost and found post and was excited that I found my sugar bowl...we unpacked everything in the kitchen in anticipation of finding it and never did! She also said that she was down in the basement at her house the other day (where we used to live) and was looking through some boxes of jars and other things that we had stored down there and found a box that I had forgotten...it had some keepsakes from my grandma in it and....(drum roll, please)....there were my salt and pepper shakers! I was having a bad day and she knew it would make me smile.

Thanks Mom! It did. :)

Becca! I didn't know my last lost and found post title was a quote! I've never read Sense and Sensibility. I g00gled it and found various different versions of it used in different places but none of them poetry quotes. It is very close to Amazing Grace, "I once was lost but now I'm found...", maybe that's what you were thinking of? :) Anyway...I didn't want you to think I was trying to steal someone else's words! :) Thanks for pointing it out though! :) I also had to laugh at your reference to your proof reading...I am horrible for that too! And to think what we went to MTU for! LOL I usually have to go back and fix my posts after I have posted them only to have my wonderful husband point out to me that I made some other mistake! LOL I guess that's what happens after you've been away from the books for a while - although I don't usually have a very hard time seeing other peoples mistakes - it's just my own that I overlook...isn't that how we usually see things even in life?...huh...

Well, now I'm rambling...I'm off to administer math and spelling tests today! :)

Monday, December 10, 2007

Outside my SD Window

These are what I woke up to a couple of days ago when my dad was visiting...I wish I could have gone out and gotten them with a better background and not through my window but they are what they are and the moment was captured...they are beautiful, dispite the Ter*ex factory we see from our living room window....Someday we will have a better view *sigh*, someday.






This one is from this morning. It doesn't very accurately capture the frost that was still in the air sparkling like tiny flecks of diamonds that floated in the frosty air. You can see the frost on the trees across the street if you look close enough...

This One is For Bob...

I laughed so hard when I saw this one the other day...I had to share it!





Goodness! It's Been Long Enough!

We've been keeping busy lately with a lot of different thing...dentist appointments, flu shots, school, the church Christmas program practice and visits from my dad and Bob's Dad and Marge. We've had a wonderful time with all of them here! My dad came twice because the first time he left his tools in the trunk of his car when Bob took him to the airport and didn't realize until he was looking for them in Flint at the baggage claim! So he made another quick trip out here the next week to come and get them. Only to have the handle torn when he got back home with it...Luke thinks he should have just left them here for him!

The kids dentist appointments went well, Jozie has to go back tomorrow for her last crown and filling. (After seeing where their crowns and fillings are I'm pretty sure they weren't over doing it...I feel like such a bad mom for letting their teeth get so bad!) She was so brave and I was so proud of her! She didn't even have me come back and sit with her. She is growing up! When we had their second flu shots last week we needed no extra help! She sat on my lap and cried a little but when it was all over she smiled at the nurse through her tears and said that it didn't hurt at all! Hopefully her time of fear is beginning to subside!

The Christmas program went well yesterday afternoon. Jozie was a dog in the skit they did, "Twas the Fight Before Christmas" and they were both "Wise Guys" - as Luke called himself - in the manger scene. Luke got a little bored while he was up there and to my horror started making faces and crossing his eyes while we were sing "Joy to the World"! And of course we were sitting right in the front row - right next to Grandpa (Bob's dad) - well, second row to be exact because the little ones were sitting in the front - so I couldn't even hide! What a goof ball! At least he got up there, I will give him that, because he fought even being in it from the beginning! When I too them to practice on Sat. I parked in the back of the church. I didn't stay because I wanted to go and get a few groceries but as I exited the front door and walked around the back where the car was still running, Luke was running around the other side of the church and was ready to get back in the car when I got to it! I wasn't happy to have to march him back to the front (the back door was still locked) and take him back inside for the second time. He did stay put then though!

We got our first big snow last weekend (the first of the month) and it's here to stay. I thought I would be kinda shell shocked because we haven't seen much of it over the last couple of years when we were in IN but it has actually been nice. I look forward to having a white Christmas this year - or at least what bit of Christmas we will have...the kids are thrilled, of course, and I can hardly keep them in the house except for the cold is so bitter that steam forms outside the front door every time it's opened - kinda like your freezer on a hot summers day! They can only stand it for about an hour and then they are back in. The beautiful blue sky and bright sun are very deceptive! Thankfully they have discovered that they can play a couple of games together without fighting too badly so that occupies them for some time instead of the TV - which I hate!

Oh! And Jozie lost another tooth - I think that makes it number 8 for her! She was excited when she discovered $1.02 in change that I - er, the T00th Fairy - left in place of her tooth!

Here are some pictures that I have been meaning to post but never got around to and some of the Christmas program. Those didn't come out the greatest - I have fiddled with the settings a bit and figured out how to help that but when you are trying to pay attention to what they are saying it's hard to change settings on a camera - or even remember to do it. I will have to take a few test shots the next time and get it fixed before the program even starts.

When my dad came to visit we went to school with Bob one afternoon to see the 737 blow the safety slide...oh boy, what a thrill! It was COLD that day but was excited to FINALLY get up close and personal with the plane that he has been only able to see from the car since it arrived in like October. You can't see it through the hood over his face but he is excited!


Here's my dad, Bob, and the kids inside the plane. The slide was kinda small (not like the big ones you see in the movies) and I didn't want the kids to go down it because I was afraid they would fall off the side. All the "big kids" in Bob's class went down it though. After they inflated it they found out they have to send it to MS or something like that to have it deflated and inspected! It had to be about 3 feet wide and 12 feet long...I wouldn't like to the be the FedE*x guy who had to deliver that thing!


Here's a picture of the actual plane - Bob took this picture a few weeks ago when we still had green grass though...this wasn't the day we were there! :)



This is the kids and their rowdy bunch of cousins at Thanksgiving with Bob's family. They are all quite a handfull but mostly a big bunch of blessings!



Luke and Dakota making a fort at Grandpa and Grandma's on Thanksgiving...of course Luke was mostly going around fixing what Dakota - who will be 3 in Feb. - pulled down. I must admit he kept his frustration to a minimum with his younger cousin but fumed every time he turned around and had to "fix" something! LOL


After not-so-careful review, this was the only picture of the Christmas program worth posting, the rest were so dark you could hardly see them. At least Bob got the whole thing on video. Jozie is the middle "Wise Guy" - strategically placed between Luke and Andrew who like to be boys and wrestle or fight constantly - and Luke is on the right.

Friday, November 30, 2007

I Got A Chicken?

We had a pretty good day as far as the kids not fighting today. They played in Luke's room on the bunk beds and listened to TobyMac, one of their favorite singers. I wasn't paying a whole lot of attention to what they were doing until they came down singing the song J-Train only instead of singing, "I got a ticket," they were singing, "I got a chicken"! I had to laugh because they think they are so grown up listening to TobyMac but they still add in their own childish lyrics - and not even on purpose! It kind of surprised me because Luke knows the words - or at least sings - all the other songs on his CD and I've never really noticed him singing the wrong words before - I guess I will have to start paying closer attention!



This isn't the best video but you can still hear the words and get the gist of the song...it was even taken at S0nshine Fest - some of you might have some fond memories of that wonderful event...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

What Was Once Lost, Is Now Found

Today I was cleaning my bread machine because I was going to start a loaf bread. I haven't used it since I moved from MI so it needed a good scrubbing. I opened it up to get the loaf pan out and there, in the bottom of the loaf pan was a newspaper wrapped item that must have been missed when I unpacked...we were so tired I decided that I would just clean my bread machine when I was ready to use it. My surprise package today was my sugar bowl! I was so excited I washed it right out and put sugar in it! It was one that matched the rest of my glassware I got when we got married so now I have 2 because I went to WalM8art and got a new one when my old one was lost.

Now I just have to find my salt and pepper shakers!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Menu Plan Monday



I didn't post a menu for last week because we were gone for most of it. We ended up eating mostly left overs on Monday and Tuesday. I still haven't figured out how to go back to cooking for 4 after almost 3 years of cooking for 8!

This week we will be eating a lot of wild game since it's that time of the year (hunting season!)

Monday: My new recipe of the week was today in 6 Layer Dinner. It didn't go over well esp. with the kids. Bob didn't care for it much either because it had rice in it. I also had to alter the recipe slightly because it called for a quart of canned tomatoes. I had 1 jar left but when I opened it to put it in it looked funny - it was a very dark - slightly brown color of tomotoes and the seeds in the top third of the jar were black. I know it can be like that from using extra-but-not-quite-over-ripe fruit but I didn't want to take any chances and end up getting everybody sick. I used spaghetti sauce instead. It wasn't a good thing. I was really upset - Luke doesn't like store bought canned tomatoes and neither do I - yuck! So chili this winter just won't be the same! Anyway, this meal was definitely a bust...I won't be using this recipe again!

Tuesday: Either Rabbit or Venison - probably both. I'll probably pan fry the venison since it's steaks and I will probably make rabbit and dumplings - we have only 3 jars of rabbit left (when we lived in MI we raised rabbit for meat and I canned some with my grandma)! But my dad is coming to visit Tuesday night so it will be well used with him here with us!

Wednesday: Crockpot Pork Roast - I will be using this recipe which we all loved the last time I made it. I don't have any red wine so I used something (I can't even remember what it is!) we had left from our honeymoon over 7 years ago! LOL Just goes to tell you how much we consume alc0h0l!

Thursday: Chicken of some kind - probably baked somehow.

Friday: Leftovers

Saturday: Surprise Birthday dinner for Bob's dad - Jozie will be cooking this day!

Sunday: Probably more leftovers again!

Check out Laura's blog for more menu ideas!

Home Again

We got home early this morning - about 12:30am - so we are a bit tired this morning. The kids actually slept until about 8:30! I was amazed! :)

We had a nice relaxing trip and it was nice to see Bob's family again. Of course there was lots of food and sweets and I probably gained 10 pounds! It's a good thing I have to get groceries - I didn't get much before we left last week so that means there isn't much to snack on right now! Thank goodness! Like any of us need it! :)

Of course, I took my camera and didn't take it out except for last night before we were leaving and Luke was making a blanket fort with his cousin, Dakota. I've been so bad at taking pictures since we moved...probably has to do with the fact that I don't care for our new home - it's little and cluttered and not very appealing, and I just sorta got out of the habit of taking them when we go anywhere else. I'm also not as thrilled with my new camera as I originally was. It just doesn't take wonderful pictures like it should. I don't know, maybe it's just user error. It's an Olympus Stylus so it's not a cheap camera but It's still just a point and shoot little thing and I want more...maybe someday! :)

Well, I'd better go and get my stuff from our trip put away. We have company coming this week - my dad is going to be here tomorrow and Bob's dad is coming over the weekend - which means I have to do laundry and clean...sounds like fun!

So, as exciting as this post has been, I'm going to end it before I put you all to sleep! :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007



We're on our way out of town for the rest of the week. Hope you all have a great Thanksgiving with your friends and family!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Can You Get A Second Opinion...

For a dental exam? I know it sounds kinda silly but after spending a ton of time and money on glasses that Jozie has hardly used, I'm not sure I want to fill my kids heads full of crowns that they really don't need!

We just got home from the kids dentist check-ups and cleanings and they told me that Luke needs one crown for a really bad cavity - which I could see was big and very close to the nerve - but Jozie needs 4 crowns! I could see a place that there could be one, maybe, but 4?!! I realize that I am not a dentist but at what point do you trust some guys whom you have never met before who does what he does because it's his source of income? Maybe I just feel like I was taken advantage of over the whole glasses thing.

Here's what work they will be having done:

Luke - one crown and one filling
Jozie - 4 crowns, 4 fillings, and 2 sealants - apparently the ones from the other dentist came off...or they aren't really sure they are there because they can't really see them, her filling from the last guy did fall out for sure. The poor kid hates pain so I'm sure these will be fun visits.

I'm sure you can see where I am coming from...just a bit frustrated about the whole thing.

So, we are off to our second appointment of the day. Luke has once again picked at the cuticle on his thumb until it's raw and infected. It's really gross looking, like his skin is peeled off and his meat is exposed...I'm sure you wanted that visual. :) We are probably in for another round of antibiotics and daily soakings...

Oh, joy.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Saturday At Home

We've been spending quite a few of our weekends at home lately. I don't let the kids watch a whole lot of TV during the week - if any - I'd rather they spend their time outdoors or at least reading or playing. So Saturday I let the kids get up early and watch cartoons. I remember doing that as a kid and since we didn't have a whole lot of TV during the week, it was always a treat to get up on Saturday morning (sometimes we'd be up so early we'd watch the national anthem before the broadcasting day started!) and eat cereal then watch cartoons. They actually did it for most of the morning without fighting! I was amazed!

Then came Ninja Warrior.



It's not a cartoon so it surprised me when Luke decided he wanted to watch it. Especially since most of it is in subtitles and there is very little said by the American host. But he just loves it! It must be a guy thing because it ended up back on for Luke's turn again about the time Bob got home. He had some drafting to do for homework but he couldn't seem keep his eyes off the foolishness! It was quite comical because every time he caught me watching him watch the goofy guys try to kill themselves on a mostly unattainable obstacle coarse he'd shake his head and say, "It's just foolishness!" and keep on watching! It must be a boy thing. Luke went from doing front rolls and jumping around in the living room and saying how he would be able to beat all those guys to sitting in rapt attention - and knitting! LOL

Jozie chose to watch Ice Princess. No surprise there! Luke went to him room while that was on, he didn't want to see all that girl stuff!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Lost?

No, I'm not going to blog about the popular ab*c television show. I did used to watch it until it became more of a chore to watch the people go through their torturous lives on an island that may or may not have really existed...anyway, that's another story.

My loss comes in 2 forms this week:


1. Luke lost his third tooth! He was pretty excited and has been working on this one for quite some time. I thought he was just pushing it because he wanted a visit from the tooth fairy but when I looked at the whole in his mouth closer, I could already see the new one coming in! He is quite proud and talking a little funny because it's his top tooth. Now the one next to it is also loose! I think he's going to be able to sing, "All I want For Christmas is my Two Front Teeth" this year! My loss - my baby continues to grow up!






2. My insurance company took money out of my old checking account that I am trying to close without my authorization and since it happened on the 8th, there's pretty much nothing I can do about it. We canceled our old policy because we moved to SD and had to get a whole new policy and added renters insurance to cover Bob's tools. At the same time, which was on or about the first of the month, I canceled our old checking account info with them and gave them our new info so that we could close that old IN checking account. Apparently things didn't happen on time or correctly or whatever and they will refund our money but not until they are positive that they have it. For some odd reason their accounting department can't see that the payment came out of my account over a week ago and I no longer own that money...it's not floating around in space or anything, according to my bank it's now property of X Insurance! So I had to have my bank fax them a copy of my statement showing that the payment was indeed made and MAYBE I can get a check issued next week - isn't it wonderful that these kinds of things always happen on Fridays? Oh, and they can't just credit my checking account with the money because of some law that seems to apply to them saying that since they are a business they can't put money into personal accounts? Doesn't WalMar*t credit my credit card (which is really my PERSONAL checking account) when I bring in a return? They are a business and they can do it, why can't my insurance to it? And do you think someone from the insurance company would have the courtesy to call me back when I left a message on the voicemail of that always unavailable manager? Of course not, I guess little things like unauthorized bank payments don't really concern them that much! I did talk to one lady that said that if we incur any overdraft fees because of their mistake than the insurance company will take care of them....but at this point that isn't in writing and I won't hold my breath!

Well, now that that's off my chest, I need to go and get supper ready and play a game of Yahtzee with the kids. They (well, really Jozie) have been complaining about doing addition and subtraction lately, especially when the numbers get up into the thousands, so I thought we would play a math game and hopefully they will get the practice in without them even noticing it! Think I'm sneaky enough? Or will it be obvious when it comes to adding up their scores that I was just trying to squeeze an extra math lesson out of the day? :) Guess we will wait and see!

Monday, November 12, 2007

My New Blog

Skip on over to Welcome to My Bookshelf and see what I have been reading lately...

Menu Plan Monday


Well, this is my first Menu Plan Monday! Hopefully the first of many! I got out the Hy-vee and Econo Foods flyer on Friday and planned my menu until Thanksgiving around what was on sale and what I already have and spent less than $150 on my groceries! Something tells me that I will probably have to go again, it didn't look like a whole lot of food for the next 2 weeks - and I have already noticed a couple of things that I forgot - but this being my first try I think I did pretty good.

So without further ado, here's the menu for this week!

Monday: I'm currently making Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
Tuesday: Baked Salmon for the hubby and me and baked chicken for the kids
Wednesday: Taco Salad
Thursday: Crock pot Pot Roast
Friday: Beef Stew and biscuits (hopefully there's some post roast left to make this!)
Saturday: Crockpot Chili and cornbread
Sunday: Leftovers! (my personal favorite day of the week!)

I may have to change things around if the pot roast isn't as big as I think it is.

Oh, I just have to say that I got a pretty good deal on a pork tenderloin and although it was huge it was big enough that I cut it into 3 meals worth of meat all for about $13. I was excited except for the fact that I try not to buy pork that much - we are more red meat people. But I couldn't pass up the deal!

I have also been trying to sneak in whole wheat noodles whenever possible - it seems to have worked for the spaghetti a couple of weeks ago without any complaints. Unfortunately I forgot them for the chicken noodle soup this week so we will just have to make due with plain old egg noodles...maybe next week for the stroganoff I have planned.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

I'm glad we didn't get these for the kids for Christmas this year!

It Really Makes Me Wonder...

Will there really be a Presidential Candidate that will be worthy of the title and office that they strive so hard to attain?

Like Kylene, and I'm sure many others, I have been thinking about who I would find to worthy of my vote and support for the upcoming Presidential election. I haven't found any that I would definitely say I would be excited about but there has been some thing that I can say that I am definitely not thrilled about. The following is something that I just got in my e-mail found rather disturbing. How can anybody who claims to want to uphold, serve, and lead our country not do something as simple as respecting our national anthem and flag?

Can this be possible? Let's find out about their true colors!

I had heard about this but a picture is
definitely worth 1000 words!




Respect?

Senator Bara*ck Oba*ma, Govern*or Bill Rich*ardson, Sena*tor Hilla*ry Clint*on, and Ruth Har*kin stand during the national anthem.

At least we know there's nothing wrong with his legs - he is standing...

Here's more info on this beautiful (gag me) picture that goes into more detail and even more disturbing facts about a man that could very well become our next Commander in Chief.

Ok, so maybe it's not protocol unless you are in uniform but at the same time don't we teach our children to stand and put their right hands over their hearts when they say the pledge of allegiance (my kids do it for the American Flag, along with the Christian Flag, Missionettes and Royal Ranger Flags as well)? I did it all the way through grade school and still do, why can't he?

The Man That I Adore

Bob has updated his blog! He forgot to mention one VERY important thing...he is doing GREAT in his school work! His test grades haven't fallen below a B and most of them are A's. I'm so proud of him! :)

I just love that guy!

What Will They Come Up With Next?





This week the kids have been playing with Le*gos constantly. They have come up with a new "game" - they invent a lot of games - called Wegos (pronounced "we goes"). They have a ton of the little Le*go guys that seem to have been dismembered along the way so they have collected all of the little yellow heads and they are the Wegos. The rest of the men (and a couple of girls and boys mixed in) that are fully intact - or at least have most of the body, maybe with an arm missing or the little yellow head replaced with a lamp shade or something - are their people. They have built little, VERY imaginative, pet shops for the We*gos families to buy them supplies and toys at, a car dealership, a furniture store, homes and a root beer saloon - bar and bar stools and all. Not that they have ever been in a bar but I think they got the idea from watching Kid Nat*ion. Amazingly enough they have hardly been fighting this week! I am flabbergasted! Not to say that they haven't fought AT ALL but it has been far less than normal. Maybe because they have been working together with a common goal but either way, it has been a wonderful break from our normal hitting, kicking, yelling, name-calling-fun-filled-day! I have also been assigning extra school work for those big fights that end in tears and yelling with nobody really knowing what happened or how, just that nobody did anything to anybody...it seems to help!

Yesterday morning I was cleaning my closet in my bedroom. You are probably thinking how could it need cleaning? She's only been there about 2 months?! The kids decided to use it as a hiding place without me knowing and totally destroyed it...the hanging bar is even off on one end! So I was looking through my boxes of books trying to get rid of more and get the kids books out of mine to put on their bookshelf. I have my books in boxes because I don't have a book shelf. I found a copy of a children's encyclopedia and thought they might enjoy that, they are getting big enough to understand and read most of what's in there so I put it in with their books. Luke picked it up immediately, what kid doesn't like a big new picture filled book? He said it was the "Great Bi*g B00k of Every*thing"- it's been years since he's watch "Stanley"! He was happily looking through it when I left his room after shelving the rest of the books. Some time later I went in to find both him and Jozie looking at it together and they had found the anatomy section. I am NOT prepared for that lesson! So I quickly distracted them with the Wegos and quietly took the book back to my closet.

My mom says that I should be teaching them some of that stuff now. Obviously they know the difference between a b0y and a gi*rl, they have grown up with that difference but I almost feel like if I go into more details I am taking away their innocence, know what I'm saying? Kinda like Jodie feels about the "sleeping" deer in her neighbors garage. It's part of the reason that we chose to homeschool - they grow up too fast and know things that they shouldn't know until they are way older. I know it's a little old fashion but at the same time I want them to enjoy just being a kid.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Remember?



Recently Rebecca had a post about music that brought back memories and I happened across this one tonight - Bob wanted to hear some Stryper and this was one of them. I remember requesting this one quite a bit - probably for some boy! Old Rockey didn't disappoint very often!

My Verses of the Day

"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth." 3 John 1:4

"Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it." Proverbs 22:6

Here's a little girl who's parents have taken these verses and made them real. And it also shows you that they are never too young to start learning the scriptures! My kids didn't learn Psalm 23 until last year when they were in AWA*NA. They were 6 and 7 then but this little girl looks a little younger than that. She's just so cute I had to share it when I found it!

Pa's Long Rifle

Today for Reading we read chapter 3 in Little House in the Big Woods, Pa's Long Rifle. I think Luke almost liked this chapter better than Jozie. She could care less about our day of gun safety and the mechanics of a gun but as I write Luke is watching an N*R A video - that I thought was Gun Safety - about the 10 best guns in history. Jozie found it boring and asked to call her Amma on the phone - just like a girl, she'd rather talk on the phone!

Bob had his shotgun out the other day for pheasant hunting (I now have pheasant in my freezer but I'm not sure what to do with it!) with his buddies from school so tonight I'm going to try and get him to give a short gun safety demonstration and show them how his gun works.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Making Butter, Shots, and That Pesky Time Change

On Friday we had a fun project from our Prairie Primer and we got to make butter. Of course Luke wasn't that interested because he couldn't taste any of it but Jozie jumped (literally jumping to shake it!) right in and then got tired of it just as quick. So I was the one who got to do most of the work because we started it after all, I knew we had to finish it. Once we got the cream to the really thick state and it started to separate Luke decided he wanted to give it a shake and of course, took all the credit for making the butter! But Friday night my right shoulder took the tole for about an hour of shaking 3 cups of cream! By Sat. afternoon I could hardly move, it even hurt when I breathed! I was cursing the butter. Last night I hardly slept and all of Bob's snoring didn't help matters. I slept with the heating pad but it's not exactly easy to get it on a shoulder and up to my neck. I don't know what time it was but I finally found a comfortable position and despite Bob's serenade I slept for a couple of hours....only to get up this morning and get ready for church and get there to find out that we were an hour early! Bob and I were both rater shocked. At least we didn't plan on being there for Sunday School and find the doors of the church locked!

I'm usually on top of the time change, I can't remember the last time that I didn't realize it was happening but this year it caught me completely off guard! That's what I get for making my own butter!

This year in the state of SD all children are able to get the flu shot for free. I thought it sounded good and decided to make an appointment for the kids yearly check ups and at the same time have their flu shots done. I didn't think much of it except for I was a little worried about Jozie and her shot. She has an irrational fear of needles (well, of anything that will cause her pain, really). The last time she had blood taken to have her iron checked and to check for lead it took me and 2 nurses to hold her down and then the 3rd nurse to take her blood. Well, I kinda figured that she has grown up and it shouldn't be that bad this time, right? Wrong. She wouldn't take her arm out of the sleeve of her shirt so the nurse went and got 2 others and it took 3 of us to hold her and then the 3rd nurse gave her the shot. 4 people to give an 8-year-old a flu shot. Nice. To make things even better, we have to go back next month to get the second one because this is their first year getting a flu shot. Luke had to finish his chicken pox vaccine and the flu shot and had one in each arm. He didn't cry. He wasn't glad to get them and was definitely glad to get it over with but he didn't even care. I don't know how 2 kids can be so completely different.

Friday, November 02, 2007

My Confession

So it's been some time since I have posted. Some things have been happening in our home that have brought me to the edge of my sanity. No, it's nothing life threatening or relationship threatening - it's just been a trial for me and has made me realize just how lonely I am here on my great SD Sunset Prairie. There are days it feels more like a dark valley. Don't get me wrong, I will NEVER look back and wish we were back in my mom's basement again but there are times that I just feel so alone. I know, I have my family - Bob is great and I don't know what I'd do without him or the kids - but a girl needs more than that, wouldn't you agree? It's been too long since I got to spend time with friends...dinner with Jennie and Janice, W*l*Mart and coffee with Kristin or even just grocery shopping with my mom. I guess my original euphoria of having my own home and starting a new chapter of my life has worn off and I now realize that I need something more. I need friendship. I need girlf*iends to laugh and cry with and talk to and listen to. Not that my bloggy friends aren't great, but I need more. I don't even want to go grocery shopping by myself anymore, I would rather take the kids (well, maybe only one) with me just so that I'm not physically alone.

I'm not looking for sympathy or anything, and no, I'm not depressed. Just looking for my place here in my SD Sunset, Small Town America where I can be myself. I think most of you know me well enough to know that I am shy. Shy enough that I have a hard time talking to people and I think sometimes others see me as stuck up or proud. Trust me, those things I am not...but how do I get past that and where does the courage to go up to someone else and introduce myself rather than waiting for them to do the same come from?

So, that is my confession. That's why I've had a hard time posting lately.

This is me.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Rain in October

That isn't such an uncommon thing. It's fall and it rains and by the end of the month - in some places - that rain turns to snow. BTW, it hasn't snowed here yet but I wouldn't be surprised to have it by Halloween...remember trick or treating in the UP wearing snow pants and parkas?

Anyway, rain in October here brings about stir crazy kids in a tiny apartment! It's been raining here all week and I've been encouraging the kids to read in their free - a.k.a. "I'm bored" - time but lets face it, how many 3rd graders want to read for hours a day? So I say sure, turn on the TV, check out the cartoons and if they are appropriate for you guys go ahead and watch...bad idea. How many parents enjoy the commercials on cartoon channels this time of the year? Every last one it seems is one toy or another and every other one - depending on if the toy is for a boy or a girl or occasionally for either - I hear, "I want that for Christmas mom!" or "Mom, look quick, that's what I want!" or one of their favorites, "I WANT THAT!" The worst part about it is that there isn't anyplace else for me to be if the kids are watching TV. I could clean but other than that I don't have a whole lot of excuse to spend in my bedroom and there's just no place to even sit in the kitchen. I like rain but come on! My kids only want to play outside and I can't let them!

So after so much of, "I want that!" commercials, I turned the TV off and told them to go and play in their rooms. They played pretty good until about the time I was making supper - like I have nothing better to do while I am making supper - to start trouble. I guess Luke had the bright idea to play catch in his bedroom because I wouldn't let him "go outside and play baseball in the park" in the rain. I don't know how but Jozie ended up getting her head in the way of the baseball and almost ended up with a black eye! Why do kids think that just as long as they have the physical ability to do something they can do it anywhere and anytime they want? Shouldn't it go without saying that you don't throw a hard ball around your bedroom where there are windows and walls that can be broken or dented?

I tell ya...some peoples kids!

I hope it doesn't rain tomorrow!

A New Job

Today I finished my application for a new job. Since Bob is going to school full time and can only work a limited number of hours a week, that means it's up to me to "get a haircut and get a real job!" Ha, ha, ha... Anyway, it's for an internet based company called Live*Ops. You basically train to become an agent and then they send you a script and a phone call from someone who has called about a product - I won't be doing any calling - and then you get paid by the minute for the time you are on the phone. If you sell something, great, sometimes the clients give bonuses if you do but if you don't it's not a big deal either, the point is just to keep the customer on the phone as long as you can so you can get paid for your time that you work. You choose your hours - when and how often you work.

I must confess that I'm not thrilled with the prospect of phone sales but this is the only work from home job that I actually know someone who does it and it works for them. It's not a scam or a pyramid scheme, it's simply a job. :P What I'd really like to do is start an ebay store to sell my used homeschool curriculum (which isn't much right now) and also some extra stuff that my FIL has stored in his house. He said he would give me a percentage of whatever I can sell. I'm just a little bit lost on how to get the whole thing started and worried that I would end up spending more in shipping and such than it's worth.

A lot of people make money working from home - why can't I? But who knows what is legit and what isn't? Obviously stuffing envelops is out of the question and medical billing - from what I understand you have to have experience and education to do that. Does anybody know what would really work? And what really wont?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Keeping Busy Doing Nothing

I haven't had much to post about lately but I thought I would let you all know we didn't fall off the edge of the earth (though we DO live close to it!). I have been busy with a couple of knitting projects that are NOT washcloths - after about 20 of those I figure I should broaden my knitting horizons! I have started a baby blanket and made a baby gift to send to a friend. I will admit, I did make one more washcloth (and I have 2 more to do for specific people) but it had some cable stitches in it and it was fun to do something with a design on it rather than just a plain knitted one.

I have also been busy catching up with my friends on OTH. I finished season 3 the other day and plan on starting season 4 soon.

The kids are finding multiplication fun (for the time being) and a nice change from add and subtract in math. They are also excited to be able to write their names in cursive but can definitely use some practice there! They have discovered the books on Luke's bookshelf that have been there for quite some time and are the same ones that we had in IN. They are hungry for pizza and BookIt! is a great motivator! I have also told them that if they want to watch TV, they will read first. They weren't thrilled about that at first but this afternoon I was upstairs only to come down and find them reading to each other! I was excited! They were even helping each other when they got to words that they struggled with. Did I say I was thrilled? :) Jozie keeps asking me to work on Science but despite my best efforts to find a wonderfully comprehensive science program I ended up with one that they like but it only has one lesson a week. :P I'm thinking we will probably accelerate it and do it 2 times a week then move on to something else new. I will admit that I was hesitant to send it back because the kids liked it from the moment I opened the box but the next time I wont hesitate - even if the kids like it...it doesn't always mean that it will be the best.

Well, I just heard the weather man on the news forecast snow for tomorrow so I'm going to bed. I'm not ready for it and if it does come I plan on pulling the covers over my head and staying there until it's gone! See you in the spring! OK, it was a nice thought for the moment it came into my head. Not to practical though...maybe someday!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

What's On My TV?

So recently I have become a One Tree Hill addict. I started watching it in Indiana with my 'Lil Sis' and now I want to know what comes next. I'm not really sure why, who really cares about high school drama? Maybe it reminds me of what high school could have been like if I had been involved in that kind of thing...maybe I feel like I missed out? Is this really what high school is like now? Even in the popular crowd I don't remember this much drama when I was there! It makes me glad I homeschool that's for sure!

At any rate, I was looking online for the episodes that I have missed (I'm somewhere around the end of season 2, there are 2 more seasons after that and from what I understand, season 5 is starting soon!) and I found a quiz to see which One Tree Hill character you are the most like. I would have to say it is pretty accurate except for the part that Hailey left her husband to go on tour with a musician that had a thing for her...I'd never even consider it.

Just a fun little quiz that I thought I should explain before you all ask, "Why do you really care which One Tree Hill character you are?"

Take the quiz!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

It's All About the Glory?

For lunch today Luke was pretty hungry so he decided to go for 2 frozen burritos. He was waiting for them and watching the microwave when it stopped so I told him to turn them over and put them in for another minute and 15 seconds. He did and stood and watched it again and said, "Mom, aren't microwaves the best counter backwards? Well, second best because God is the best. HE knows all the numbers in the world and he never gets confused and sometimes the microwaves get confused and blow up, right Mamma?!" Just about then he remembered his burritos and said, taking a big whiff, "Aahh, doesn't that smell glorious mom?!"

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Check It Out...

If you wanna know how things are going on the college front check out the 38 Year Old Freshmen - he's eager for some adoring fans! :)

For My Home-ec. Teacher

I have a home-ec teacher - a.k.a. my sil - who doesn't know what the Magic Loop Method is so I am going to post a few links here, here, and here, and the booklet from Knit Picks for her to check it out for me and explain a few things that I can't figure out. :) Like how do you actually join the stitches in the round to make it one continuous loop! I never claimed to be the smartest one in the bunch! I even watched to video from Knitting Help.com for double pointed needles and I STILL can't figure out how they get the end stitches together! Help!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Knots



This morning I told the kids they weren't going to be watching cartoons before school. For some reason I let them do that the last couple of weeks and it hasn't been working out for the good. I told them we would read one of our history books instead about traveling west in a covered wagon and neither of them were happy about that. Jozie threw herself into a chair in a huff, decidedly against any such foolishness and Luke sat on the stairs trying to avoid listening. But after a page or so Jozie was on the floor on her belly listening to me and looking at the pictures and answering my questions - the cartoons soon forgotten! Then shortly after she came over to me, Luke brought a knot book that was on the steps and pretended to look at that as I read. They were both disappointed when I stopped and said it was start school!

Jozie took a little longer with her math than Luke did (she usually does) so while she was still working he found a rope and started to make knots he found in the book. He was VERY impressed with himself and even LET ME TAKE A PICTURE of him when he lashed 2 of my knitting needles together! He couldn't find 2 sticks outside so those were acceptable.

"That's pretty impressive Royal Ranger work, huh mom!"

I'm sure we will have to leave the knitting needles as they are so he can bring them to Royal Rangers with him on Wednesday night to show to his commander.

Jozie couldn't be outdone so she got out her knitting and started working on that again and sat there humming as she worked. She counted her stitches and she now has 16 (I think she is supposed to have 9 or 10)...at least it's not in knots! Looks like I have some unknitting to do now!

Friday, September 28, 2007

TGIF!!!!

That's about how I feel today. Most of the time Friday is like any other day of the week but for some reason this week has been extra taxing on my nerves...maybe it's that monthly thing, who knows?

The kids have been having problems with math this week...don't ask me why it's been mostly review, they can do it it's just that they hate math and hate sitting to do it. I will admit that 4 pages of about 25 problems each can get tedious...maybe next week we will see how they do by only doing odds or evens like I used to do in school.

And laundry? Who doesn't have a washer and dryer of their own? I do! BUT they are in my brother-in-laws garage, NOT in my apartment where they belong! And it costs at least $20 a week to do laundry! At LEAST! I NEVER used that much worth of electricity and water per week when I did laundry with my own washer and dryer! It's absolutely absurd! I thought we were living in these apartments because they are cheap and we are supposed to live cheaper...not so! It cost $1.75 per load to wash and dry which may be cheap by laundry mat standards but the load size is about half of my washer that's in a garage! And you find out the hard way if you overload the washer because when it's time to dry - they come out damp and you have to re-dry them for another $0.75!

So, you can probably sympathize with me and my laundry woes...anyone with more than 2 children can REALLY understand because I'm sure you have even more laundry than me to do!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Hmmm...

This really makes me wonder if what these people are pedaling is for real...I just found some random pictures of people and put them in the meter and this is what I got...




I also did it with my kids...it was really kinda fun.

The fake one was funnier though!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Things Luke Says to Get Out of School Work:

Luke: Mom, are these all right? (showing me his math workbook)
Mom: (after checking them over) Yep, looks good!
Luke: Good, they were a bit of a challenge for me because my eyes are bothering me today! - Which translates: Good thing I don't have to do any over again because my eyes hurt from the crying fit I just had because I didn't want to do my math today to begin with!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Yep, It's Another PhotoShow!

And it's a long one! Enjoy!

Make a PhotoShow Full Size

Excellent Oppertunity

Hey! I just wanted to make a plug for the book club that I am in. It's pretty fun and it's all done online. I don't think I've mentioned it before but there is a banner on my sidebar for it. The reason for telling you about it now is that they are changing their start up policy is changing soon! They are currently giving everyone who signs up 3 free credits when you post your first 9 books, that's pretty good, it means you get 3 books free! But they are changing it to 2 free credits when you post your first 10 books. So if you have been thinking of joining no better time than now.

Since I joined I have gotten 11 books and I have one on it's way. I have 15 books. They only cost about $2 each to sent so you only pay that much for each book you get (you get one credit for every book you send). They have books for kids and adults and there is also a rather large selection of home school books.

So, here's their form letter they have for me to email out but I thought it would be easier to just post it here and let you decide. Remember! If you are going to join use my email address as your referral because I get a free credit for every referral I give.

Do you have any used paperback books lying around? I did, and I finally found a great way to share them with other people.

It seems that a few guys were sitting around one night talking about all the paperback books that they purchased over the years when they traveled on business. Each of them had a stack of books that they had read. So they decided to set up a web site http://www.PaperBackSwap.com/ that allows all of us to swap paperback books with each other. Now it's grown to include ALL books--hardcovers and audio too!

Let me tell you how it works because it is so easy. I listed a bunch of books on the site (you have to list at least 9 books to get in the club) and I got 3 free book credits to get me started. So you can order 3 books right away - free of charge and have them mailed directly to you. No strings attached. No gimmicks. No spam mail. Nothing! You just have to love reading.

Then when another member selects one of my books that I have listed, I mail it to them. Yes, I pay for the postage. But then I get a book credit and I can select a book that I want. So another Club Member returns the favor and mails me one of their books free of charge. For every book I mail out, I get another book in return - a true shared system!

And when someone requests one of your books, all you have to do is print a two page document on regular paper from your printer, and use them to wrap the book. The wrapper includes the mailing address and the amount of postage. Then drop the package in the outbound mail. Hey, most of the time you don't even need to go to the post office!

Right now the annual club membership is FREE! Eventually the founders will ask everyone to help contribute to pay for the upkeep of the web site, but for now the annual club membership is free. The annual dues will probably be between $10 and $20 based on the number of people in the club. But again, right now you don't even have to pay any dues for one year if you become a Charter Member.

You really need to check this out! And if you do sign up, please list my email in the referral section because then I get another free book. This is a great club! http://www.PaperBackSwap.com/

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I have A New Friend...

Check my sidebar.... :)

First Day of School





Well, we had a belated first day of school. With all the packing and unpacking and visiting and visits from relitives I barely have had the time to order curriculum - let alone get anything started! The majority of my time online since we got online again has been searching for and ordering what we are going to use this year. Here's what we are doing:

  • Math - ACE - the same thing we used last year. The kids aren't fond of it at all but I was afraid to deviate from what we've used because I'm not sure of the level of their math skills from ACE and I didn't want to order something different and end up with learning gaps.
  • Spelling - A Reason for Spelling
  • Handwriting - A Reason For Handwriting
These are the three that we have and are working on right now. Next week we will be starting:
  • Science - Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry Pre-Level 1
  • Reading/History/Social Studies/Art/etc. - Prairie Primer with the Little House on the Prairie Series. This is an excellent unit study that we will also intagrate SD history into and visit the Laur*a Inga*lls Wil*der Homestead and Prairie Vill*age here in SD in the spring. They are both pretty close so we are really looking forward to it.
I haven't picked out English yet because I'm not sure if or how it's involved in the Prairie Primer so after we get that I will make my decision about where to go from there.

New Places, New Home, New Name!

I decided to go with a new name and a new look to go with our new home. Especially because I was tired of my not-so-original out-of-the-blue original name. I plan on trying to put in a picture of a SD sunset soon but for now my colors are as close to sunset colors as I could get them.

Somebody told me it was hard to see with all that black and bright colored font so hopefully this will be better for you...but the next time it bothers your eyes you are going to have to leave me a comment! :) LOL

Moo Part 2

Ok, ok, I know it's been way past the 10th so you all are probably thinking, "It's about darn time she gets up her new post!"

Before I forget again, the Moo a noise I hear around here freequently. Usually at night when I am puting the kids to bed we can her the cows (and occationally smell them:P) from the 2 stock yards near us - one is a block away in one direction and the other is about a mile away in the other direction. So either way the wind blows we can smell them. It's actully not so bad that you can't handle it, just a little whif to remind us that we aren't in Chicago anymore! :) Yeah!

So the big move went well. It was very draining for me, both physically and emotionally. Who would have ever thought we had so much stuff! I didn't think it was all going to fit, and we had the biggest truck from Penske! I came to the realization that my kids are no longer babies. They worked HARD! I honestly don't know what I would have done without them. They brought as many boxes each up the stairs and out to the truck as I did easily. I am so proud of them and at the same time it makes me wish for their younger years, they seem to be growing up too fast! Maybe in a couple of years we could think about another one....yeah, right!

The first night we had the truck we packed until around 8 or so. My mom had taken the kids to church to say goodbye to their friends on their last Wednesday night service so Bob and I were there alone. We had just picked everything up and closed the back of the truck when we decided to run to the gas station to get a soda. We had hurried to get everything done because the sky was looking menacing and we didn't want to get wet. The gas station isn't far, maybe a mile but by the time we were half way there we encountered rain, hail, and wind that was unbelievable! A tree fell on the other side of the street as we were driving by and when we got to the gas station we were soaked to the skin from the 10 feet between the car and the building. We had just gotten to the cases where the soda is and the electricity went out! So there we stood in the gas station freezing and wet in the dark wondering what to do. The girl at the check out said she couldn't sell anything because the register wouldn't even open for the lack of electricity so we decided to just go home and drink what was there...tap water. :P Things got even crazier as we were on our way home so I called my mom and told her to keep my kids in the church where it was safe until we could find a way home and let her know the situation. It took us almost an hour to get home because every road we turned into had trees down across them. We went by bent and twisted sign posts and puddles that were more the size of small ponds - one of which we stalled the car right in the middle of! Luckily we got it started again and finally found a street that was clear literally to the driveway. A tree from across the street had a huge branch down in the driveway so we had to drive across part of the lawn to get into the yard. Bob and I worked together to move the big branch in the driveway and soon had everyone in the neighborhood coming down the street as it was the only way in and out. The storm calmed somewhat after that and my mom brought the kids home - they were pretty excited about such a big storm and thought it was pretty cool but neither one of them were willing to sleep in the dark basement! So they ended up on the floor and the couch in the living room that night. After the storm calmed down there was still a lot of rain so Bob and John went and borrowed the generator from the church to hook up to the sump pump in the basement. It was a good thing we had it! They were out of electricity for 3 days there and the pump ran literally every minute for the first day or so! We called Penske and they graciously gave us 3 extra days on the truck because the next day we couldn't even get the thing out of the yard because of all the downed trees. They were using a snow plow to push the trees off the roads until they could get to chopping them up and hauling them away.

After all that we were a day late getting out of there but once we got on the road things went smoothly. My mom and John came along to help us unpack because we didn't have anyone here that we knew to help out. It was really nice to have them here those first couple of days. They helped out a lot!

We got here on a Saturday morning after spending the night with Bob's brother and unpacked the truck for the rest of the day. Sunday my mom and I unpacked my kitchen (I still haven't found my salt and pepper shakers and sugar bowl that match my set, grrr...) and Bob and John took the truck back. Monday my mom and John left to go home and Bob, the kids and I went to new student orientation at school. The kids were exhausted and were amazingly pretty good - I think they were more like zombies than kids that day! They both fell asleep in the desks while Bob's instructor was telling us about the school and classes and such. It was quite funny! The other guys in the class couldn't get over how funny it was and how much they wanted to do the same thing! LOL

Tuesday morning Bob started his classes and that's pretty much where we are at.

We don't have any living room furniture because we sold it all when we moved from Michigan but we don't really have room for it yet anyway. Our living/dining room is really rather small and once we got the table and chairs, bakers rack/microwave table, china cabinet, computer desk and TV in here we don't have much for anything else. MAYBE a small couch or love seat would fit but we would have to get rid of a few boxes and rearrange some stuff a little.

We had to get rid of a lot of stuff! Bob took 2 car loads to the Sal*vation Ar*my and 1 load of books, CD's, DVD's and VHS movies to the library. And we STILL have to get rid of more stuff. There just isn't room for it! This is the smallest place we have ever lived and we've always had a garage before for storage. It's not such a bad thing because it forces us to reevaluate what we have and what we really need but it's been difficult deciding what to keep and what to get rid of - more for Bob than for me though! The way I have been looking at is that I haven't used most of it in 2 years, why do I need to keep it? Most of it is replaceable so if we need it again in the future we can get a new one. Hopefully we won't need to move so much junk when we move again!

So that's it for our moving adventure. I will post more later on what we have been up to since then.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Moo

That is the first sound that struck me our first night in our new home! More on that later...

We are getting settled slowly (Jamie! Where are you with your quick unpacking skills when I need you!:). This place is a lot smaller than we anticipated - our apartment that is - and we have had to get rid of a lot of stuff. We are still sifting through boxes of kids toys and parental junk that we constantly ask, "Do we really need that?" or "Have they outgrown this yet?" I have a huge load of stuff for good will but haven't gotten a chance to get it there because we only have one car!

Bob is enjoying his new "career" as a full time student with 20 credits! His books alone cost $500 and his tools will more than triple that for this semester. With more to come next semester! Fortunately next year will be much less because most of the books he had to get this year - only like $200 next year and tools will be covered because he won't need anymore new ones next year. Who ever knew that being an airplane mechanic was so expensive!

So, I am at the library and should go find my kids. We won't have internet until the 10th so I will give you the whole scoop then - complete with pictures!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

And We're Off!

Well, the computer is being packed today and I'm not sure when I will be back online. We will be in our new house on Friday but I'm not sure when we will have internet access again...who knows how long it will take to get it there in the middle of nowhere!

Until then, happy blogging my sweet blogging friends! :)

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Journey to a Cake


Our busy weekend is finally over and I am pooped! I'm ready for bed but before I go I wanted to tell about this wonderful dairy-free cake I made over the weekend. It took me 2 days to do - one to bake and one to put it together and decorate. (I also baked 2 batches of brownies from a box and a different chocolate layer cake from scratch for a cake walk at church on the same day I baked Luke's cake. Can you call me crazy please? I know I was feeling that way on Friday when I did it!) Sami even said that it didn't taste like it was dairy-free! Yes! This is the cake I have been looking for all these years! I got this awesome book for the library that I'm going to have to get from ebay called Amazing Dairy-Free Desserts by Penny Wantuck Eisenberg. Thank you Penny! I love this book and can't wait to try out the ice cream - it's one of the things that Luke has really missed since being on his dairy-free diet. There is even some great info at the beginning of the book about dairy-free products and where to find them. The "Chocolate Marshmallow Layer Cake" - I'm not sure if I can post the actual recipe because it is published so I won't - has tofu sour cream in it. It's the "secret ingredient" so to speak. Luke loved it - even better because he's the one it was for!

Amie, you have to find this book. Sammy would love you for it - not that he doesn't love you already! But you can score some pretty big cool mom points when you make him those chocolate chip cookies! Which are also great, by the way. There are some eggs in it but I'm sure you have found some pretty good egg substitutes that would work just fine!

So, without further ado, here is the birth of my pirate cake. Since I did it last minute I did have to improvise on a few things - like the drinking straw gun walls! - but I think it turned out pretty good in the end and one little - ahem, I mean big - boy thought so too, which is really all that mattered! :)

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Saturday, August 11, 2007

"Ahobe Der Me Pardies!"


Today Luke is 7!


Happy birthday to my strong willed child! There isn't a day that goes by that I'm not glad that he is ours! Though he's not a cuddly boy, that just makes the hugs and kisses that he does give (or take willingly!) all the more sweet. He is all boy, that's for sure. He loves dirt and bugs and tormenting his sister and not listening to his mother! Though I believe he is the reason for those 3 gray hairs I have, at least there aren't 7 - one for each of his years! His strong will will take him far in his life IF he learns to tame it and control it. He is a determined child and when he's not being cranky, he is a complete joy to be around. He's a big help and will do anything - when HE wants to! :) He thinks he's the strongest boy in the world because he can lift a mic stand and loves to quote Garfield, "It's 100% fat!" when refering to his rib cage and oh so flat belly! LOL


His favorite quote from Garfield is, "Love me, feed me, never leave me!" That, my dear son, I will pledge to you forever.


This title quote, along with the visit to the Wiggles World last week, inspired me to try this pirate ship cake for Luke's birthday today. The quote, "Ahobe der me pardies!" is Luke's 3 year old version of Captain Feather Sward's fameous quote, "Ahoy there me hardies!" He still likes pirates but he has graduated to "Pirates of the Carribean" lately and loves to tell me about "Davy Jones"!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Inch by Inch

We are STILL waiting for news for our apartment! I called yesterday to see if it was ready to move in and she wasn't sure. The office is across the state so she couldn't just go over and check but the lady who is the caretaker of the complex that we will be at was out of town until Friday. She said she was trying to get a hold of a different guy who may have a key to get in and check but apparently she didn't talk to him or he didn't have a key because she never called me back yesterday. All we are waiting for is the date we can move in so that we can get a truck and go!

Bob is pretty excited to get accepted to school! He was afraid he was going to have to take placement exams because it's been so long since he graduated from high school but they accepted his AS*VAB scores from when he went into the Air Force almost as many years ago! Now we are waiting for financial aid. I did his FA*FSA as soon as our taxes were finished last spring but now we find out that he was randomly selected by the US Office of Education for verification. So we have to fill out the verification form and send in a copy of our 2006 taxes. If there are any differences between that and his FA*FSA than things will be adjusted accordingly. I know they aren't any different because I used our 2006 taxes to fill out the application! Oh, well, just one more hoop to jump through.

Bob starts school on the 20th.

Oh, and we had a GREAT time at Gre*at America over the weekend. Luke thought it was a pretty awesome birthday present and was elated that his friends from church were there too. He wanted to go on every roller coaster there but unfortunately Mom didn't want to ride all of them so he was grounded - except for the Wh*izzer which I don't even think I had to go on with him! Jozie didn't like the roller coaster too much (she cried all the way through!) but they had a wonderful time at Hu*rricane Har*bor, the water park. It was sprinkling while we were there but that didn't stop us! We went down the lazy river and they played around Skull Island for quite some time. We didn't get to go on as many rides as we wanted to and actually didn't get through the whole park because we did a lot of waiting. We were there with a group of 12 people and wasted a lot of time trying to decide what to do. That part was a little frustrating but the kids had fun and I don't think they really realized what they missed. I went for them and as long as they had fun that's all that mattered!

The day was pleasntly not sunny and hot (we didn't get sunburned!) but it was hot and cloudy and we ended up leaving early (about 8:30) because of rain. I think the most stressful time of the whole day was getting out of the parking lot! Everyone else had the same idea as we did at the same time and we ended up in a huge traffic jam.

The kids were asleep before we pulled over for gas and food on the way home so we just went through the drive-thru and were home by about 11pm. I'm glad we didn't stay until 10 because we would have been even more exhausted than we were by the time we got home!

Yes, Jamie, I do remember going "back in the day"! What great times! I didn't get the Ameri*can Eag*le this time though! I wanted to but nobody else would go on it with me and I didn't want to go alone. :(

I didn't get many pictures because I didn't want to carry my camera after Lunch. Luke also has this obsession about ruining every picture I take of him by running or turning away so there aren't many nice ones of him! Of course Jozie is just the opposite, I can't even get a candid shot of her, she sees the camera and she HAS to pose! Go figure! Oh, and Marcus, the boy in the picture with Jozie, is only a year older than her! I think she kinda likes him! LOL :)