Thursday, May 29, 2008

Photo Shoot 2008
The wonderful and ever-clever Elastic held a Great Sox Exchange this year. I was one of the lucky participants. I hunted down sox with glee and sent them to my exchange buddy. In return, I got these lovely new friends and we just HAD to do a photo shoot!
These are my Converse sox
They were kind of timid...

And in the end were so shy we had to end the photo shoot.
The cow sox on the other hand? Well, they were rather exuberant! It actually got a tad annoying after awhile...
... showoffs...
I do love my new sox! They make me feel all happy and warm inside! Thanks Lola!

Side note #1: Yvonne always does these really cool side notes on her blog and I'm STEALING the idea! BWAHAHAHA!!
Side note #2: ;) A good friend called yesterday and said, "Hey! We want to come visit for the weekend, is that okay?" I think I said something really eloquent like, "HECK YEAH!!" And excitement filled my heart... until I looked at my house. Then I said something extremely eloquent like, "Oh crap." And so, I will be doing laundry, scrubbing floors, wiping down counters, dusting and general cleaning of everything and everywhere. I won't be present in blogland till Sunday or Monday after our awesome company heads back home.
I hope y'all have a wonderful weekend!
Batter Blasters
batter blaster
Have you seen these things? They are a riot! It's pancake batter in an aerosol can like whipped cream! You heat up the pan, squirt some batter in and wah-lah! Pancakes! You can make waffles too, but I haven't tried that yet. My kids actually prefer these pancakes to the ones that I usually make. I found them at Costco... I think it was 3 cans for about $9. I love anything that is going to make my life easier to clean up!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Scale War
We own two scales. The first one gives me my new horrible weight. The second says I'm 4 pounds lighter. Of course, my brain wants to go with the second, but my jeans are telling me that I need to go with the first scale. Sigh. Stupid jeans.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Jump Start
Yesterday was such a fun day! We went to a canyon that's about half an hour from the house and hiked with friends! It was so much fun! We went up and down several ladders...
...took some bad family pictures... I never have looked that great in hats...
...hiked through a "slot canyon" (this shot is from the floor looking at the sky)...
...and eventually made our way back out safe and sound!
After that we swam with some other friends and then barbecued with both families that night.
Today? I'm sore, but I feel great! I had been putting off starting my workout stuff (remember, I'm lazy), but yesterday gave me a pretty good jump. I'm excited to get going today!
How was your Memorial Day weekend?

Sunday, May 25, 2008

404 Error
It seems that we have an error here in our town... the "cheap" gas station (you know, the one that is ALWAYS lower than everywhere else) is now up to $4.04 for a gallon of gas. Sigh. I know there are places where it's higher than this, but it's still annoying! I'm afraid we've had to cancel all of our travel plans for the summer. It's just too expensive to drive home. We were going to take a little day trip tomorrow, but we've scaled that back to something more local. I try not to go out and run errands more than once or twice a week. We're doing everything we can to make each tank last for as long as possible.
What is the price of gas in your area? Are you changing any of your summer plans because of the cost? Or are you still going to do the things you'd planned? Has it affected your every day living at all?
Enquiring minds want to know...

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Round is a Shape
So, I've gained a little weight... again... and I'm trying to get motivated to get up and get moving. It's harder than I thought it would be. I'll admit it - I like being lazy. I enjoy lounging around, reading books, messing around on the computer, and in general, doing nothing. Of course, the health benefits to this type of lifestyle are fairly limited. Okay, really, they are nonexistent. So, I'm trying to get motivated. And so, I turn to you, blogging buddies. I have a few questions that I'd love for you to answer if you get a moment...
What is your favorite healthy meal?
What about healthy snacks?
What do you do for exercise?
Do you stick to the same routine?
Or do you like to change it up?
How do you stay motivated to reach your goals?(Not just weight loss goals... any goals)
I know I can do this. I've done it in the past and I want to do it again. Any thing you can share with me would be much appreciated!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

It's Curtains for You!
I live in a desert. It was 113 the other day. And in the summer it doesn't cool down at night. Sometimes our low temperature for the day only reaches the mid 90's. And so, you can see why our air conditioner runs. A lot. And our power bills? They make me want to cry.
So, we've been trying to think of ways to help save money. We're renting right now, so it can't be anything permanent. Our thermostat is set at 81 during the day and 78 for night. We have blinds in all the windows, but they really don't seem to help that much. The other day I put up curtain's in my boys room. I used white corduroy - hoping that the white would help reflect some of the heat. I don't know if you can really see the top... I cut off the tops of some old blue jeans - buttoned them together and then sewed them to the top of the curtain. Not that this helps save energy, I just love the way it looks!And then we tried something. We bought some Mylar blankets - the kind that you find in the camping section at the store. And I got some strong magnets or earth magnets. And I hung the Mylar between the blinds and the curtains using the magnets.
It has made a huge difference! I did this in Baby Girl's room too and I can't believe how much cooler these two rooms feel. Hopefully we will be able to do this in the dining room and living room too.
So, do you have any tricks for keeping your home cool during the summer and saving a little money along the way?
And then! Oh, the noise! Oh, the Noise! Noise! Noise! Noise!
Sunday night we got a phone call from one of Red's friends. Both of his parents were scheduled to work Monday night and they were wondering if he could stay here. "Sure, no problem!" I said, wanting to help out where I could. So, he came over. They played PlayStation for awhile and then it was time for bed.
Yeah, right.
They talked. And they talked and they talked and they talked. And, while Red's friend is a nice kid, he has no idea how to whisper. Red's not the greatest at it either. So, the noise level started out fairly normal, but usually grew to a roar. I've never said "SHH!" so many times in one evening.
And then, to add insult to injury, they were up at 5:15 giggling. And trying to whisper, but it wasn't really happening. And they got louder and louder and I finally got up, threatened them with their very lives, and crawled back into bed. But Red's friend just can't seem to keep the noise to a level considered normal and the "Shh"-ing began again.
Right now, Red is in the shower. And his friend? Quiet as a mouse. Me? I should go back to bed. I'm feeling a tad on the Grinch-y side and a little more sleep would help. But, Red will be out of the shower in a minute and the noise will begin. Again.
At least they'll head off to school in an hour or so... but they'll probably wake up Little Bug (who went to sleep around 10:30 last night) and Baby Girl (who seems to be getting sick and was up half the night with a stuffy nose and a cough). And those two will be so fun to be with! Sleep deprived and a tad on the sick side. Sounds like a recipe for a house full of Grinches to me. Should be a good day!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

At a Glance
Do you ever read something out of the corner of your eye and totally misunderstand what is written? For example, in the BlogHer ads on the right hand side, there was a link that said "Bloggers Unite for Human Rights..." . Now, I just kinda glanced at it... and I'm tired... so I hope you'll forgive me when I say that I did a double take because I thought it said "Bloggers URINATE for Human Rights".
And yeah. I can see how that could bring some temporary relief, but really, it's not a long lasting solution. Don't you agree?
I think I need more sleep. Who knows what will pop up in my sidebar tomorrow if I continue to be sleep deprived...

Saturday, May 17, 2008

When Does it Come Out On DVD?
Yep. It was that good. It came out yesterday. We saw it this morning and I'm already wondering when we'll be able to get the DVD.

Prince Caspian was an AWESOME movie! Lots of changes from the book, but I still loved it!
Have you seen it? Are you going to see it? Give me your thoughts...

Friday, May 16, 2008

It's Still Me
Some of you have noticed the new avatar... sorry for the confusion. Most of you are used to seeing some kind of frog next to my name. Unfortunately, I can't find a picture of a frog that I really love right now. So, instead, you get this picture of my eyes and a Gerber daisy. And no. My eyes aren't that blue... it was just too fun to play with the tinting feature on Photobucket!
So, don't be afraid... don't hide from the new avatar, it's just me. I'll get back to the frogs as soon as I can find a picture that I love!

Google Me This
It always amazes me the things that bring people to my blog...
orbert skye - author of the Leven Thumps books... pretty good, but not my favorite - Seriously? I really want to know why you are Googling my blog address... wouldn't it be easier to just put it in the box up top?? I'm just sayin...
mejojac - Yep. That's me...
costco cheesecake factory cheesecake topping ideas - we used fresh blueberries... cooked them down into a sauce... so good!
royal icing tiara - I get lost of searches for this... again, go here... here and here and the actual instructions are here
mormon green bracelet - I have no idea what this is about... my son has one of those wrist band things that is green...
dobby sturgis motorcycle - Um... is this really on my blog somewhere?? Probably in different posts... maybe... I think...
we're sorry, but the number you have - Red's friend has gotten so much better about not calling so much. It's been nice
memosfamily party - I'm always up for a party! Who'd like to come?
knuckles splitting - I never did find a lotion that worked REALLY well. Some worked okay for awhile, but nothing really great...
green frog in lettuce bag mexican - this was one of my all time favorite pictures!!
Frog in Lettuce
Sorry the picture is so big... I wanted you to be able to see the frog...
it feels like someone is sitting on my chest - I'm sorry... been there, done that. Feel better soon or push whomever is sitting on your chest off...
space mountain kids scary disneyland - yep. Red freaked out... but in the end he LOVED IT!
blogher dentist crowns my temporary 2008 - after THREE permanent crowns, they finally got it right. As I walked out of the office they tried to set up TWO MORE APPOINTMENTS. I laughed!
knock-off recipe for pf changs lettuce wraps - Oh, Amber sent me a link for these... they weren't exact, but they were still good! Go here...
canning jar vases - they do make really pretty vases... as seen here...
i hope your day is going good vs well - ack! A grammar thing! BE GONE!! I don't know nothing about good grammar...

And that's it for this edition of "Google Me This!" (It's supposed to be a play on words from Batman... the Riddler always says "Riddle me this...". Yeah. It's kind of lame... )

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed
We've had our mattress for about 10 years. Honestly - I bought it at a yard sale. The guy said he had bought it a few months earlier and was now having to move to New York and was trying to get rid of most of his furniture and then he'd start out new once he got there. He asked $50 for it... I got him to throw in a set of dishes and we had a deal. You see, we had been sleeping on a full size water bed. But, the bed had been modified or something... so it wasn't actually as big as a full size bed, but not quite as small as a twin. It was very uncomfortable and we really needed a regular mattress.
Now, this mattress was nothing fancy. It was a lovely turquoise color and the coloring bled through the mattress cover and into the sheets for the first while. Lovely. But, we were college students and we took what we could get. It was just fine for many years. But, recently it had developed some dips and odd curves and lumps. Another added bonus was the chorus of squeaking and creaking springs every time you moved. I was waking up each day with back trouble. Neither of us felt like we were getting a good nights sleep. And so, we decided to suck it up and get a new mattress. But, what to do with the old one?
Why, drag it out in the living room and let the kids jump on it of course!
They got to do this under one condition: they would NEVER EVER jump on the new bed! So far we haven't had any trouble... and the kids had a ball jumping on the bed for a few hours before the guys came and hauled it away. It was almost tempting to keep around... but it just didn't match the living room, so it had to go...
And we got a great deal on the new mattress. I'm sleeping better and having less trouble with my back (knock on wood).
But watching the kids jump around made me miss our trampoline. We all used to go out and jump for hours when we lived in Oregon. Now our yard is too small to set the darn thing up. Someday I hope we'll be able to set it up again... someday... but for now, I'll just have to keep them off the bed!

Monday, May 12, 2008

I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles
Have you ever taken a picture that you just love?? I take a lot of pictures that are just okay. But every now and again, I capture a gem!
The other day Baby Girl and I went out and blew bubbles. I took over 100 pictures (I love digital cameras) and captured this shot:It is my new favorite picture of her! I was really disappointed with how dark it turned out. I wish I had Photoshop, but this is what I did with my program...

It's not exactly how I'd like it to look, but I do think it looks better than before.

What do you think? And, do you edit your photos? If so, what software do you use?

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mother's Day
I'm watching all these fantastic posts creep up all over the blogosphere about how awesome being a mom is. And, for the most part, it is pretty darn amazing. But sometimes... sometimes I wonder, "What in the world I was thinking?!?" How could I have ever thought that I could be responsible enough to bring another human being into the world? And yet, 10 years ago that's exactly what I thought.
10 years ago I was pregnant with Red and I had ALL the answers. I watched other parents and kids wherever I went. And mercilessly, I critiqued them.
"Those parents are way to harsh, I'll NEVER be like that! If they would just do this... it would be so much better!" or
"Those kids are such brats! My kids will NEVER be like that! If the parents would just do that... the kids would be so much better behaved"
My vast stores of parental knowledge lasted for about 8 months. Then reality came in the form of a red headed creature who screamed throughout the night. My amazing Mom came and stayed with us to help out. The day she left, Hubby and I cried. She wasn't that far away, but we had no idea what to do with this tiny person who was 100% dependent on us.
Where were my answers? I had been so sure and confident a few days before! Where had my never ending supply of knowledge disappeared to? I was lost. And so, I did what all new moms do. I struggled. I tried my best and plodded up each new hill, attempting not to mess things up too much along the way. And then Little Bug came along and we had a whole new set of struggles. He was, of course, followed by Baby Girl who brought a diva like quality to the struggling.
I have since come to realize that motherhood kicks my butt on a fairly regular basis. I'm getting better at it, but I'm not the totally amazing mom I thought I would be. It's hard. I lose my temper. I am prone to rash decisions. I am cranky. I make more than my share of mistakes. I don't have the answers I once thought I did.
But, then I have to remember the moments that make it all worth it. Some of these experiences are small and others are almost overwhelming. But the good moments never seem to last long enough. For example: Little Bug said his very first prayer the other night! My heart overflowed as we signed and said words together. The joy I felt is indescribable.
The next day he pooped in his pants 5 times - including once while he was in an inflatable bounce house with a bunch of other kids. The frustration and embarrassment overshadowed that joy. But the memory of that prayer brings those feelings rushing back. And I guess the trick of motherhood is learning how to chain all of these moments together without letting the hardships overpower the bright spots.
I still don't have all the answers I thought I had 10 years ago. But, I feel like the few answers I have now are worth so much more than the unrealistic ones I thought I had before. I'll keep struggling as we head into new territory with each kid, but hopefully I'll be able to focus on the things that make being a mom such an amazing blessing.
Happy Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Deja Vu
Every morning my kids go outside to play.
Every morning the sprinklers go off.
Every morning they squeal and scream.
And then, I smile...
I'm going to take a little bloggy break. Probably just through the end of the week. I find myself in the same situation over and over - I spend too much time on the computer.
Yesterday I had to clean and clean and clean because I had let things go for such a long time. It was frustrating and I wasn't really able to enjoy the class last night because I hurt from running around and scrubbing all day.
So, I take a step back... again. I thought I had this figured out, but apparently not. Hopefully I'll gain some perspective and then I'll be back in blog mode.
Have a good week!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Reward vs. Reality
I've never been one to enjoy house work. I hate laundry. I delegated the dishes to Hubby years ago. I don't like picking up after everyone. Bathrooms are just nasty - end of story. I have stacks of paper all over the place, but I just don't want to go through them.
For a long time I just labeled myself as a lazy slacker. It made me feel guilty - which is what everyone needs in their life, right? More guilt.
But then I realized something about myself - I am reward driven. Completely. If I have to get laundry done then I set up a reward for myself... such as reading or computer time. Sometimes I'll even set it up so that if the house is totally clean, we go out for dinner that night.
But my reward right now is something much bigger. Bigger than dinner, a bag of M&M's, or some reading time. The reward right now is lack of embarrassment.
You see, I have a group of women from our church coming over tomorrow for a class. And the last thing I want these ladies to see is my piles of unfolded laundry or the inch thick dust on every surface in my home or the carpet that at this moment looks like leapord print because of all the little spots on it.
So, I don't know how much I'll be around for the next few days. I'll try to get around to the blogs (as a reward for getting tasks done!) but we'll see how it goes.
I did dust this morning and now my reward time is up for that task. Time to go accomplish some other mundane thing... but before I go, I'm curious... what motivates you to get up each day and do the things you do?

Saturday, May 03, 2008

So, tonight was the concert. Babysitting was arranged. I had bought water and snacks. We cleaned the house and got a few things gathered for dinner for the kids. And with each task and each step I felt worse and worse. I really like Rascal Flatts. I really wanted to see them in concert. But the uneasiness just didn't wear off. So, we called our friends, asked them to come over for dinner and we stayed home. We didn't go to the concert.
The rest of the evening unraveled like this...
... early this afternoon, Hubby stubbed his toe on a box in the hall that contains 6 gallon jugs of water. The aforementioned toe is now swollen to twice it's normal size, super tender to the touch, and it's black and blue. I don't think he will be able to get shoes on anytime soon.
... I put my hip out. I know. I sound like I'm 80! But I have inherited really bad hips. Around 9:00 this evening I couldn't even walk.
... Red went with a friend and his Dad to an air show today. They called us around 8:30 to apologize for being so late. Red had thrown up and was in the bathroom at a Denny's where they had stopped. They didn't get home till 9:30 and he was so upset at what had happened.
Those three things alone make me feel like we made a good choice. Hubby's foot would have hurt all night long, my hip would have gone out an hour before Rascal Flatts even took the stage, and Red would have come home to a babysitter who would have been super sweet to him, but it wouldn't have been Mom and Dad checking on him and letting him know that everything was okay (he's a worrier... he was afraid he was going to be in trouble for throwing up in their car...)
So, instead of the awesome country music filling my ears, I'm listening to my neighbor's dog bark. And bark. And bark... but I still feel like we made the right choice.
But, just out of curiosity.... if you wanted to throw something at a dog to make it SHUT UP, would you throw something heavy, sharp or both? Hypothetically speaking, of course...

Friday, May 02, 2008

Happy Mother's Day to Mii


And yes. We're having a blast with it!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Haphazard Happenings
Just some random things happening here...

  • I put my kids to bed last night at 6:54. I was done. And for their own safety and my sanity, it was best for them to be in their beds.
  • I'm rereading the last two Harry Potter books. Why? Well, I have read the first 5 many times and thought it would be fun to read the last two. When I'm done with those I'm going to read Prince Caspian and then the Fablehaven books again. After that, I'm going to read Eragon and Eldest to get ready for the new book this fall. And this summer, I might, JUST MIGHT, read the Twilight series... we'll see.
  • Red is coming down with a cough. I was hoping it was allergies, but it's not looking that way. Grrr....
  • Photobucket is a great place to find pictures, but I've learned something very important about that site: NEVER EVER READ ANYTHING ON ANY OF THE PICTURES!! And if you aren't sure what it's a picture of - DON'T LOOK CLOSELY. I've seen some pretty disturbing stuff on there... but if I follow those two rules, it's not too bad!
  • We are having a class next week on alternate cooking sources. It's part of a preparedness group that I'm the head of... anyway, I have a gal who will be talking about cooking with a solar oven and then I'm going to talk about Dutch oven cooking. I'm trying to see if I can get someone who knows a little more about it to come, but if not, I'll give the basics... since that's all I really know... does anyone have a favorite Dutch oven recipe they'd like to share?

dutch oven

  • I got an early Mother's Day gift... it deserves a blog post all of it's own... so I'll share that with you in a few days.
  • Little Bug is saying and signing so much right now! He does this every spring. His language skills go crazy and then they slowly disappear over the summer and fall. Last year he retained quite a bit of his language. I'm hoping he'll do even better this year. Yesterday he said or signed: help, please, thank you, more, cereal, and water! It's such a fun thing to hear his little voice speaking words rather than his usual random sounds :)
  • I made cinnamon rolls yesterday... so yummy! I won't tell you how many I ate yesterday... or how many I've already had today. But I'm tempted to go grab another one right now... in fact, I think I will! Have a fabulous day bloggernauts!