"Anyone can have one kid. But going from one kid to two is like going from owning a dog to running a zoo." - P. J. O'Rourke

Monday, November 30, 2009

Look What She Did

Sweet Molly has completed her Christmas dress. The picture doesn't do it justice, but it is lovely.It makes my heart happy to see her sewing and then wearing what she has sewn. There is just nothing like the feeling of making something beautiful. I learned to sew when I was about Molly's age (thanks, Mom) and have enjoyed it ever since. Now I have the pleasure of teaching my kids. Nina is going to be making her Christmas dress as well, so stay tuned for pictures of that. Molly or I will be making one for Emily, too. I was planning on making Emily's, but since Molly did such a nice job on her own AND she has more free time than I do, she may end up making Emily's.

I can't wait to see them all dolled up at Christmas!

24 Hours

In just 24 short hours my dear husband will return!!!!! I can hardly wait. Stay tuned for many great photos (of his) from the wild and crazy country of India.

What I Learned Yesterday

It takes approximately 24 hours and the removal of a battery to resurrect a phone after being dunked in green tea.

Happy to say, my phone is back in working order - give a call :-)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Something New

Today I learned a new thing -

If a 3 year old puts your cordless phone in a cup of tea the "1" key suddenly acts as the "*" key, making it impossible to dial any numbers with a "1" in them. This goes on for about 20 minutes and then the phone ceases to work altogether. This makes it impossible to dial a number with any numbers in it.

I would have happily gone through life ignorant of this information

The Perfect Excuse

Yesterday Nina put fake nails on me for the fun of it (I love long nails, but have not been blessed with strong nails). They are very fun and probably THE perfect excuse not to do any work! It goes something like this..

"Ah, could someone scrub this pot for me, I don't want my nail to fall off."

"Could you put the sheets on this bed, I would hate to yank off a nail."

"Could someone put those bon-bons in my mouth so that I don't hurt my nails."

Okay, that last one I just made up, but you get the picture :-)

The other great thing about fake nails is that they make this really cool clicking sound when you are typing. I'm having fun just listening to it :-)

On the downside, it's really hard to type, but I'm not a great typist anyway so I guess it's not that big of deal.

I was just corrected by my 10 yo daughter. I was wondering why typer isn't a word ( you know someone who types) and she informed me the correct word is typist. Okay, I knew that, I had just forgotten :-0

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

I hope you all have a wonderful, blessed Thanksgiving Day.

Today, I am thankful for...
1) That I got to sleep in until 6:45. Except for having to get up at 5:30 to feed the dog.

2)I'm thankful for my kids, who provide so much help to me throughout the day.

3)That I got to iChat with my hubby TWICE yesterday

4) That my kids are enjoying the Macy's parade (this is the first time they've seen it)

5) That my sister and family are coming over to spend the day with us.

6)That Evan has no school today or tomorrow. It is always a pleasure to have him around more.

7) That I don't have to get up tomorrow morning to "hit the sales". The appeal of it all is no longer there.

8) That my dog is no longer terrified to go outside.

9) Chris is safe, happy & healthy.

10) For my Lord Jesus Christ who has provided me with the above blessings and every other one in my life.

Since it is Thanksgiving, I took the liberty to list more than three things I'm thankful for. I hope you all have an abundance of things to be thankful for today.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

This Is Easy Today

Some days it's hard to come up with things to be thankful for, today is NOT one of them. Hard to limit myself to just three...

1) That God's mercies are new every morning.

2) For the iTunes card that my hubby gave me today (I have a card to open each day he's gone and each of them has something special in it)

3) That even though it's Wednesday, it's really Friday. Yeah four four day weekends and friends and family to spend time with.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Never Too Many

You can never have too many bunny pictures, so here's one moreWe are planning on getting the one on the far right and the one on the far left.

Anniversary Thanks

1) I'm thankful for a husband who remembers birthdays, anniversaries, etc. without being reminded.

2) I'm thankful for a husband who makes me laugh - hysterically, at times.

3) I'm thankful for a husband who is patient with me and my many failings.

The lis goes on and on, but I've limited myself to three...for which my readers are probably really grateful.

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Nineteen years ago, Chris and I tied the knot - and we tied it really tight so it would never come apart :-) What a blessing it was and is to be married to my best friend in the whole world. I'd post a picture, but I can't find a recent one of the two of us together :-)

So, here's a shout out to Chris. I love you, dear! You are the best husband and dad I could ever dream of. I would say yes all over again, only this time much quicker.

Happy 19th!

Monday, November 23, 2009

In a Fit of Insanity

Apparently my husband temporarily lost his senses. This doesn't happen often, so when it does it is definitely blog-worthy.

Here's the deal, he was driving Nina to a friends house the other day when out-of-the-blue he tells her that instead of getting a bunny she can get TWO bunnies. I really should have checked to see if he was running a fever or something, because this is really not like my husband. To top it off, his reason was so that the first bunny would have some company.

So folks, instead of just one adorable little furry critter, we'll be getting two of them on Dec. 22. We don't know which one will be the second one yet because we don't know the gender of the first. They need to be like-gendered for OBVIOUS reasons :-)

Stay posted for future adorable little furry pictures.

Early Thanks

Instead of waiting until the end of the day, I thought I would make my thankful list first thing this morning (well, almost first thing, I did already shower, get dressed, had two cups of tea, read my Bible, prayed and brought Evan to the bus stop)

Anyway... here it is...
1)It's Monday. I'm thankful for Monday because it is my one day of the week that I don't have to shuttle anyone off to any class - there are no lessons or classes or sports on Mondays around here. Yippee!

2) For my friends that are praying for me this week and a half! Y'all have no idea how much it is helping me!

3) For just three (maybe two) days of school this week.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Lot To Be Thankful For Today

1) My kids were a tremendous help in getting out the door to church this morning!
2) We have a wonderful church to go to.
3) I get to listen to Evan play his bagpipes for hours each day. (for those of you that think I am being facetious, I'm not. I'm totally serious)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Better Late Than Never

Busy day, so I couldn't post my list of things I'm thankful for until now. I'm home now and ready to go...

1) Cornbags (if you don't know what one is, you are really missing out!)
2) Twitter - because sometimes you want to know inane details about people you care about
3) Warm November weather.

Friday, November 20, 2009

There's More

There is, indeed, a never ending supply of things to be thankful for. Here are today's three
1. Tea. Especially a warm cup in the morning.
2. My family of origin who love me unconditionally, even though they may disagree with me sometimes.
3. Our kids' birth families who made the sacrificial choice to place their kids for adoption and gave us the incredible privilege of parenting those wonderful children.

Mouse Count

Our little furry friend that scurried out from under the stove the other day has passed on to "mouse glory." He was joined by a family member last night. I'm not sure how many more friends and family he has, but I guess we will find out.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

One Week Until Thanksgiving

Now is a good time to start working out my thankful muscles. Truth be told, I need to do more of that every day, so I will post three things I'm thankful for everyday until Thanksgiving...

1. Healthy, usually-happy children & husband.
2. The quietness of the house after everyone (except Evan who never seems to sleep) is in bed.
3. That I get to meet our new bunny tomorrow.

Feel free to join me in pumping your thankful muscles.

It Doesn't Get Any Easier

I thought that once kids reached a certain age getting their portraits taken would be easier. You know, "Sit here and smile." Click. Done. Well, let me tell you, the one downside of taking the pictures is home is that my OLDER kids have way too much fun...

And then on top of all the goofing off, Evan now officially has an opinion on his own portrait which means that we ended up taking 63 pictures of him in an effort to get the "perfect" one. Personally, I thought number 5 or so would have worked fine, but "no" we had to go and take 58 more - ah, having a 16 year old is interesting.

And as long as I'm on this topic, have you ever noticed how some kids are so photogenic it's impossible to take a bad picture of them and other kids it's almost impossible to take a good picture unless it's totally spontaneous- you know, the forced smile that looks like they're a serial killer....

Anyway, I'm done now, both talking about and taking these pictures. Now comes the tedious task of picking out which one will hang an the wall. Invariably, Chris, the child and I all have different opinions on which picture is best. That's okay though, because I'm going to choose them while Chris is gone and all the kids are in bed :-) Ah, I LOVE being Mom!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Déjà vu

It happened again! I was making muffins this morning and talking to my hubby about meals served on trans-Atlantic flights when suddenly, Chris, with grave concern on his face, gently pushed me aside while staring past me. For a moment I thought maybe a masked intruder had suddenly appeared in our kitchen, or more likely, a giant spider was making its way towards us. Alas, neither was true. The actual cause of his startled and somewhat frightened look was.....

wait for it....

a mouse!

Apparently a new mouse has taken up residence under my oven. Those of you that followed our mice sage last year know that that means that every time I preheat my oven the little critter will be bounding across the kitchen floor to seek refuge under the dishwasher. Ah, the joys of rodents. I think I'll write a book by that title :-)

Stay tuned, I'm sure this isn't the last you will hear about this critter.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Haven't Seen Him In Awhile

I haven't posted a Tim Hawkins' video in a while, so here's one that would be really funny if it wasn't so true.

You NEED This Recipe

I just noticed that I have not posted my scone recipe on the blog. This travesty must be corrected. As anyone who already has this recipe can contest, this is a GREAT recipe! It originally came from my friend Natalie who got it from a B & B that she stayed at.

1 egg, beaten
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
6 Tbs. butter softened
1/2 cup craisins, currants or raisins (today I actually used dried blueberries -mmm)
1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Put egg into a 1 cup measuring cup and add enough buttermilk to make 1 cup. In a different bowl combine next four ingredients. Cut in butter until crumbly. Add chips and raisins. Add liquid and stir until just moistened. Drop 1/2 cup at a time onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Makes 12 scones. Bake at 400 deg. for 12-15 minutes.

Devonshire Cream (You HAVE to have it with the cream!)
3 oz. softened cream cheese
1 Tbs. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/3-1/2 cup whipped cream

Beat the cream cheese and add the sugar and vanilla. Beat well. Beat in whipped cream. Cover and chill 2 -24 hours.


Public Service Announcement

Okay folks, because it's MY blog, I can post this request for our beloved bagpipe band...

Supporting MPPB has never been easier than it will be on Tuesday, November 17.

From 8 am on Tuesday, November 17 to 8 am on Wednesday, November 18, all donations made to Minnesota Police Pipe Band using GiveMN.org will be matched by a generous gift from the Minnesota Community Foundation. In addition, the organization with the most donors receives an extra $5,000!

There are no administrative fees – 100% of your donation goes straight to MPPB.

All donations are tax deductible.

Contributions may be made via credit card only.

The minimum contribution is $10 -- there is no maximum.

Our participation at the World Pipe Band Championships in August 2010 is our top priority. Please use the link below to read more about the trip and make your donation.

Click here to support the band with your donation.

The band will be at Summit Brewing on Saturday, December 19th. We'll perform at 2:00 p.m. after the brewery tour. The tour is free but you do need a reservation. Please contact Summit to save a spot.

Thank you for your support!

Minnesota Police Pipe Band

Don't feel obligated to give, but if you want to support the bands trip to the World Pipe Band Competition in Scotland next year, now would be the time to give.

Thank you very much :-)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Portrait Time

We have stopped having our kids' portraits taken professionally because 1)It's cheaper to do it at home, 2) My kids smile better when they are at home and 3) It saves me a lot of time.

We've done this for the last couple of years and it has worked out great, but as you might guess, there are many photos that hit the "cutting room floor" and I thought I would share a few of them with you. You might notice that certain children have more goofy pictures than other, hmm, why could that be??

Now you know which pictures will NOT be gracing our walls in the next 12 months. In a few days I'll let you see the pictures we will choose ...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Whatever Happened To...

Pick-A-Pile. Surely my long-time blog readers remember pick-a-pile, where I would humiliate myself by posting a picture of a messy surface in my house and then clean it up and show off the nice clean surface. If you missed this fun and exciting blog feature, feel free to click on the link above and relive the excitement.

Now, because of the absence of pick-a-pile posts in the last year, I am sure some of you erroneously came to the conclusion that there were no more piles at our house to pick up. Ha! Sorry to disappoint you, indeed, there are still piles around here. Actually, there are so many piles that instead of resurrecting pick-a-pile I've renamed it "Pick-A-Room".

So, here we have the very first "Pick-A Room" post. Hopefully, soon to be followed by many more, as there are many rooms that could use some picking up :-) Today's room of choice was....my bedroom.

The stuff on the bed was actually on the dresser just a few minutes before the picture, I just didn't want to put it back for the sake of the photo. That would be too much like going backwards instead of making progress.
Chris' dresser - with mostly my stuff on it.
My dresser - with mostly my stuff on it.
Now, prepare yourselves. This is going to be truly amazing...oh, just ignore that stuff on the floor, really I'll take care of it tomorrow...or the day after that...it's going to the thrift store.
Look, Mom, the drawers actually shut. I've learned a thing or two since I moved out. Apparently I am stockpiling perfume though...
Here again, don't look at the floor...things tend to collect under end tables at my house...****Disclaimer****My husband is officially mortified that I post pictures of our cluttered home on the internet. He had nothing to do with this post or the mess depicted herein. He is the neat one of the family and any items in these images that look like they belong to him are merely figments of your imagination.*****

Friday, November 13, 2009

Too Cute

Okay, prepare yourself for major cuteness....

Is that not the cutest little bunny you've ever seen???? Nina has finally chosen which of the four baby bunnies she would like to have. He/she is precious. She will name it Reeses (like the peanut butter cups) unless she changes her mind before Dec. 22nd when he/she can come home.

I can see that there will be lots of pictures of this little pet on my blog in the future!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pet Update

Poor puppy is doing somewhat better. She does allow us to drag her outside to "use the facilities" which is an improvement. On Monday we had to take her someplace else (outside of our yard) for her to "go." Hmm, I guess it does take a long time to teach an old dog new tricks!

On other pet related notes (this is The Zoo after all) we are now back up to two hamsters, as the girls replace Blackberry (RIP) with a tan Syrian hamster which they have named Honey. I will post pictures soon - once the little critter settles into her new home and isn't freaked out by all of us. She didn't seem to care for her first exposure to bagpipes last night :-)

Nina's future bunny is growing and now has it's eyes open. It will still be a few weeks before we can bring him/her home. I'll try to post a new picture of him/her soon as well.

Although he's not a pet, my poor hubby is ill with a sinus infection :-( poor guy, he's still in bed right now which is VERY unusual for him. Hope he's better soon - he has to get ready for his trip to India.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Poor Puppy

I'm sure you can teach an old dog new tricks, but our old dog doesn't really WANT to learn new tricks :-(

We just installed an invisible fence for Snickers. She is a very good dog and stayed in the yard 90% of the time, but during that other 10% she apparently scared a woman who uses the park. Said woman is afraid of dogs and Snickers barked at her and scared her, SO no more wandering back to the park for Snick Snack. Unfortunately, we have such a timid dog that, now that she has been shocked a few times by the "fence", she is afraid to even GO outside. Hmm, this is NOT working well.

Actually, she was even afraid of me for awhile today since I am the one who accompanied her outside today when she got shocked. Made me cry - really, it did, just ask my son. So now, I need to spend time each day showing the dog that is safe to play outside - just away from the edge of the yard.

Anyway, I'm hoping that dear Snickey catches on quickly, because I don't know how much more of this I can take.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Bunnies Revisited

My faithful blog readers may remember that we used to have a not-so-nice bunny named Sweetie who escaped from her cage, never to be seen again. No tears were shed over Sweetie's disappearance, I might add. Well, after being bunny-less for about a year and a half, we are ready to entertain the thought of having a bunny again. Actually, Nina is entertaining the thought of having a bunny again. A friend of hers has a couple bunnies and one of them has had babies, so in a few weeks we will, once again, be bunny owners. Only this time, it will be an indoor bunny.

Have you ever noticed how kids wear you down. When the first bunny arrived it was an outside bunny all the time. According to Dad, that was where bunnies belonged. Now just 1 1/2 years later, we are suddenly cleaning out the laundry room to make way for bunny. How does this happen???? I'll tell you how it happens. Really cute 13 year old daughter makes long pleas for little bunny and how cold he would get outside and he might even die if he was left outside....you get the picture...

Anyway, who can resist this....

Friday, November 6, 2009

Is There No End...

to the funny things that Raelea says? Here's tonight's conversation with Raelea which occurred while we were making cookies.

Raelea: Heat kills germs.
Mom: That's right, how did you know that?
Raelea: Because I'm smart because I eat my broccoli.

There you have it folks. Take it from Raelea, eating broccoli will make you smarter.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Happy Birthday, Sweet Raelea

A bundle of sweetness packaged in a little girl. That's our Raelea! Happy Golden Birthday, Sweetpea. You will have so much fun being 5!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

It's A Marathon, Not A Sprint

Parenting, that is. Today was one of those days when I needed to remind myself that this parenting thing is a long-haul, big picture sort of activity, not a short little jog in the park where the end is in sight from the beginning. Oh, how it seems like no ground is being gained some days...

We frequently compare parenting with rolling a ball up hill. As soon as you stop rolling it up the hill, it begins to start rolling back down.

Okay, enough musing on the trials of parenting, I'm going to bed now...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hair Today

I've stolen my husband's laptop for this post, since our beloved computer is in the shop for, gasp, five to seven days! Ugh!

Anyway, Nina & Molly were very excited to get their hairs cut today (by someone other than Mom). Nina specifically asked for me to post a picture on the blog, so here they are - my beautiful girlsThey're beautiful no matter what, but don't their haircuts look nice?