Saturday, August 30, 2008

Harumph.

I just made a quadruple batch of zucchini bread. The batter seemed runny and the DaddyMan said as much. I thought for a minute and realized that I measured the wet ingredients correctly but had exactly 1/2 of the dry ingredients that I needed. Doh!

A decided to comment, "You're kinda like the Evil Knievel of cooking. You take big chances." The DaddyMan laughed. Hard.

Brat. I guess I'll eat her share. And then his.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Ow.

Yesterday, in my never ending quest to be a good mom, I took my girls to a picnic in the park. We packed a lunch and set out. I parked the van, stepped over the log that is the parking lot boundry and started walking.

Three steps later, I stepped into a hole and suddenly my ankle did a really good imitation of Rice Krispies--snap, crackle, POP! Ow ow ow ow. It hurt badly enough that tears came to my eyes and I coudn't even say somethin' ugly. (Good thing since I had three parrots beside me!) It took me several minutes to suck it up and limp my way to the nearest picnic table so we could have our picnic.

Today, it still hurts. It's not swollen and not bruised but dang.... I feel whiny. I wrapped it in an Ace bandage from the first aid kit and I guess time will tell. It's been a while since I've given myself a good sprain (surely it can't be anything worse!) and I guess I'll spend the day layin' around with my foot up. Right......

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Life's inconveniences

It's crampin' my life to be without my credit card.

To begin with, I can't go shopping online. Not that I neeed anything but at the moment, shopping's not even an option. There's something about NOT being able to do something that makes a person WANT to do it, ya know?

eBay wants their money. Guess how I pay them? Yup, with the credit card I no longer have. Now I need to steal the DaddyMan's credit card so that I can pay my eBay fees with that.

And finally, I'm getting a new furnace today. Why am I getting a new furnace in a 3 year old house? Hmm... let's see.... my builder was cheap? I like to be warm? Anyway, I'd like to pay for my big dollar purchase with my credit card because, oh gosh, this sounds sooo lame.... I'll get a gift card to one of my favorite children's clothing stores. And considering what a furnace costs, it'll be a decent sized gift card!

I mean really, why write a check when you can get a FREE gift card instead?? Stupid scumbag who ripped off my card and inconvenienced me. I wonder if those camels have hunted him down yet.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Proper Church Etiquette

During the summer, the bigger two girls go to church services with us, as there are no children's activities during that hour. This summer started out rather trying with Miss G, who's a bit of a wiggle butt. As the summer's progressed, she's gotten better.

She loves for me to hold her while we sing. She's a girl who loves to cuddle and she's so flexible that she just kind of mushes into you and snuggles in while we sway and sing. I held her thru most of the singing today and then my back started to ache, so I put her down. As I stood her on the pew, next to me, I pulled down her dress's hem so she wouldn't flash the rest of the sanctuary behind us. Then I draped my arm around her and went back into 'worship mode.'

That's when I felt her diggin'. As in, diggin' her panties out of her crack. Big dig, people, BIG. I looked at her and she whispered, "I had a wedgie!" With a smile on my face I whispered back, "And now alllll the people behind you know you had wedgie TOO!" Since she was leaning against me, I felt her whole body giggle. Then I felt her nonchalantly tuuurn her head to look behind us and then turn back to the front. I felt her giggle again and for a much longer stretch this time. Apparently the idea that a good number of people saw her pickin' her seat was too much for her.

As we continued to sing, I felt her continue to crack up over what she'd done. Several times, it made me shake with the giggles too. We're so easily amused. And the fact that it continued to make her laugh off and on for the next 5 or so minutes really amused me.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Whatta way to ruin a day!

Someone copied my credit card and tried to charge $500 on it.

Basically, at some point, I gave my credit card to someone to swipe and they ran it thru a machine that copies the magnetic strip on the back and then they put that copy on a Visa gift card and someone in Boston tried to use it. They were able to have $60 worth of KFC and $70 worth of gas, but when they tried to spend $375 on clothes, the card company blocked the transaction. I'm guessing they blocked it because at the same time I was trying to make an online purchase and I didn't think it was going thru so I kept trying. My transaction went thru FIVE times. Yep, today I bought 36 pairs of jeans. Oops.

So, I'm not liable for the $130 in charges that some scumbag put on my card, but my faith in humanity is shaken. What kind of person takes a suburban housewife's credit card with the intention of ripping her off? I have a very good idea of when this happened and I won't feel the same about the restaurant ever again. The night I went thru their drive thru and the guy took my card and was gone too long, I thought it was suspicious. I found it suspicious enough to think, "I need to remember this, just in case." and sure enough, when they called today, I said, "Oh my! I think I know where this happened!"

I've talked to our local police--who can do nothing since it didn't happen here. I called the town where I think my info was stolen but since it was over two weeks ago, they were useless and I have to drive 15 miles to their police station to file a report. I called Boston police where my card number was used, but they're having a big festival today and all their detectives are busy. I called the store that denied the $375 charge and they'll have their security person check the survelliance. I called the restaurant where I think this happend and their manager will be in Monday.

Basically, I struck out. Someone got away with using my card and will probably ruin someone else's day too. May the fleas of 100 camels invade his boxer shorts.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Funny or glorifying?

The other day I was perusing blogs and found a link to a site that tells you what all the trendy moms are wearing. It was called something like 'fashion911".

While I was perusing the site, my friend, Erica called and asked what I was doing. I told her the name of the site I was on and she started to laugh. When I asked why, she responded, "Oh I had a funny thought but it wasn't very nice so I'm not going to say it. But I know you'd laugh."

I was feeling punchy and asked her if her comment glorified God.

She responded, "Well, no. But it was funny!"

I kept harassing her, "Ever notice that "funny" and "glorify God" don't generally go hand in hand??"

She agreed, but knew that I would find her rude comment funny. So I made her tell me. The comment she had about me reading a blog called "fashion 911"?

"Oh, did you see a picture of yourself on there??"

After I picked myself up from rolling on the floor, I just HAD to tell her, "I was right, that didn't glorify God..... but it really was funny!"

Mama's got a new toy!

A few weeks ago the DaddyMan was travelling and convinced me that a Garmin GPS dohickey would be SO nice for him while travelling. He also threw in the line, "It would be good for you to use while garage saling.". Hmm... Okay.... buy it.

He used it while travelling and then came home and showed me how to work the handy dandy gadget. I used it last weekend for our morning of treasure hunting and after it lead me straight to the first three sales.... I was sold! I even called the DaddyMan and said those three words that are SO hard to say in marriage: "You were right."

This week the girls and I headed to the local beach (for the first time all summer. Oops!). I decided to call my pastor's wife friend as I drove, because, in order to get to the beach, I have to go thru the 'hood, scary-part-of-town, places-
that-make-the-news in order to get to the beach, if I take the most direct route. Guess which route the Garmin leads you on?? Yep and you're going thru the 'hood, it's better to take a good friend. :)

As I travelled thru the 'hood, it kept telling me to turn deeper into the 'hood, but due to road construction, the first three roads it told me to turn on were all closed. Doh! And every time you disobey the Garmin's orders it says in a slightly perturbed voice, "Recalculating." The Garmin's comuter generated female's put-out tone was cracking my friend and I up every time it spoke. Finally I reached a point where I knew where I was and how to get where I wanted to go. It told me to turn right. I turned left.

It was at that point, that someone who shall remained unnamed, to protect the poster as well as her pastor's wife friend, said, "Does it ever reach the point where it just says, "Where the hell are you going??? Wouldn't THAT be funny?" Um... yes it would.

And because of comments like that you can be sure that neither the pastor's wife nor I will ever be the voice you hear coming out of YOUR Garmin.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Need a puppy fix?

Our puppy's growing. See? She's almost up to G's elbow. Oh wait, maybe she IS up to G's elbow.

Hmm...she's past A's elbow. Oh right.....

Did you know that like any preschooler, she LOVES to watch the garbage truck? Watching her tilt her head side to side was hysterical.

This concludes today's Piper watch.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Giggle.

G was telling the DaddyMan the jobs she does each day. "Empty the dishwasher, take out the trash, feed Piper and make Mom peanut butter toast for breakfast! That one's my new job!"

The DaddyMan looked surprised and looked at me, "She makes YOUR breakfast?!" Then turning back to G he says, "Gee, I wish someone did MY jobs around here!"

Quite happily G offered, "I'll do a job for you Daddy!"

Then she paused.

"What do you do around here again?"

And that's when the water came shooting out of my nose and I collapsed on the floor in a puddle of laughter.

sum sum Summertime

Two summers ago, I made the girls fun, funky twirly skirts and tees.

They still fit.


A friend told me I needed to put new pictures up on my website. I don't feel like doing that right at the moment. It's faster to do it here.

I took a bunch of pictures yesterday after church. It took me longer to weed out the bad ones than to shoot 30 pictures.
The girls had a lot of fun. They were fully winded when it was done.
A good time was had by all. (blow this one up. I love it!)


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Disappointment

We tried a different Chinese restaurant tonight for supper. I'm disappointed. Why is it that in a town the size of ours there aren't any Chinese restaurants that don't cause my first thought to be "I wonder what the health department rated this place?".

The first buffet we tried here was so gross, even the DaddyMan lost his appetite. The second place had a fish tank and as I chewed a chewy some-sort-of-unidentified-meat I realized that the fish in the tank beside me probably had the same texture. The other place's cashew chicken was all cashew and no chicken. The buffet in the next town is 'eh' but nothin' to write home about. The mall's Chinese is flavorful, but greasy. Dark meat chicken does that, I think.

We were so spoiled back in Iowa. The Mandarin truly has the best food. Their Mandarin Beef is what I grew G on while she was in utero. Frankly, I'm surprised she didn't come out smelling like garlic. Their crab rangoon actually contain crab which I've discovered is not the norm. Their sweet and sour soup had just enough of sweet and sour to live up to its name. No matter what we ordered it was always yummy. And we ordered a lot there. I went there to eat last month when I was back visiting and the owner still knows my name. Considering I moved away three years ago, that tells you how often we ate there!

Tonight's restaurant was nothing like the Mandarin. Everything we ordered was the same shade of brown and basically in the same sauce with no variations. Okay, that's not true, the Moo Goo Gi Kow resembled the Mandarin's in appearance, but not in flavor. I was excited when I first saw it but when I tried to cut the meat, it wasn't the tender chicken I loved in a previous lifetime....er....restaurant. Sniff.

So if you're reading this and you're near Ames, Iowa.... go out to lunch or dinner at the Mandarin and think of poor little (shut up!) me wasting away without any good Chinese food. Sniff. I'm so deprived.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mom's day out!

Today I went with 5 friends to IKEA. It was SO fun! It was just the day off I needed before getting my house in order to get ready to start school in a week or so.

My friend J considered buying a new bed. She wanted to make sure it was sturdy. Based on the manuevers she went thru to assure it's sturdiness....um...wow. She sure expect a lot from her bed. Another friend and I laughed REALLY hard during her bed testing routine.

Fun times. Seriously, fun times. :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

August 14th, 2008

Do you know where you were 20 years ago today?

I do.

I was at a campout on a hog farm in the middle of Iowa. Yep, a hog farm in Iowa. In August. The smell isn't all that's memorable. It was a youth retreat called "Jesus 88". It was a weekend that changed my life.

Twenty years is a long time. A lot has happened in that time.

Last year's post fills you in on that weekend and some other stuff pertaining to why August 14th is a special day in my life.

My mom would be 65 years old today, since it's also her birthday. I miss you Mom. I'll see you again some day.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Back to School shopping

I remember every fall, Mom would grudgingly take us back to school shopping. We'd hit the sale racks for some new jeans, some cute shirts and new tennies. Then we'd pick out pencils, pencil boxes and whatnot, go to lunch at Long John Silvers (there's a reason I kept outgrowing my jeans!) and we'd go home. Then on the first day of school, I'd wear stiff new jeans (hello? August in Iowa is HOT!) and new tennies for the first time and look super cool.


Life's a bit different when you're home learnin' your kids. They don't have to look as cool as the next kid. Not that you want them to look like homeless urchins but they don't have to stay current with the trends or risk being made fun of. (Kinda like the girls in my school that used to keep track of what I wore! Mean girls suck.)


Even tho we don't NEED to do back to school shopping, it's still kind of fun. Since I wrapped up 60+ eBay auctions a few weeks ago and had some cash burning a hole in my pocket...we shopped. The really great part about my back to school shopping?? The DaddyMan uses a Visa from one of my favorite kid's stores for all his work expenses and then they give me gift certificates to use in the store. Considering how much the DaddyMan charges--I get hundreds of free dollars to shop with. I LOVE that!



I also love making my kids try on all their new clothes and do a fashion show. They don't exactly love that.
Notice how quickly their grins get cheesy?
"Last picture Mom! Or my little sister gets it!"
Alrighty then.... I guess I should take pictures of their new books instead. Oh wait.... I'd have to have ordered those already in order to do that. Oops. I'll get right on that!

The sprinkler hog

Some days, it gets hot here in the frozen tundra. And like a good mom, I turn on the sprinkler for the kids. There's a problem tho. Not all of my kids know how to take turns. Or share. Or to think of others first.



When one of your small ones is selfish, it causes the selfish one to yap with delight, while the others scream and howl cries of "Mom! She's hoggin' the water!" and "Mom! Can't you take her inside??"



Um...no. "Cause who wants THIS wet baby in their house??






Not me.

Serious cuteness

We spent an hour at the Stride Rite store last weekend. Why an hour? Because my two youngest are apparently shoe freaks. They tried on roughly 435 pairs of shoes in that hour.


These two pairs came home with us. Aren't they cute??

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Do do do doot......

Yesterday, I got a song stuck in my head. It was in there all day. And when there's a song in my head, I just keep singin' hoping that eventually it'll go away. What song was I singing? The theme to Elmo's World.

"Elmo loves his goldfish, his crayons too.... Elmo loves his .....something and something... Do do do doot, Elmo's World"

It's handy that I don't know all the words, because that way, I can make my own lyrics to that tune. That's so much funner, don'tcha think?

About the time the DaddyMan came home from work, this song was really rolling thru my head and the verses just kept coming to me.

Daddyman loves hims girlies, his wifey too
Daddyman looks grumpy, hims must need to poo!
Do do do doot, Daddy's grumpy.....

I sang several verses to the DaddyMan before he gave me 'The Look' and headed upstairs to hide. I just don't understand why he doesn't appreciate my singing. :shrug:

Then we had dinner:
It's time for dinner and green beans too
Grab your fork, yes I mean yoooou!
Do do do doot time to eaaaat.

After dinner, the DaddyMan retired to the couch. Since we got a new couch, there's more room for me to lay beside him, all snuggled up close. We like to snuggle up like that and last night was no exception. The children love to come sit on us and crowd us and squish us on the couch and I sang about that too.

Get off my leg, my bummy too
Quit squishin' me or I'll need to poo
Do do do doot, I'll squish you

Finally the DaddyMan decided the best place to hide from my singing was under his computer's headphones. He went to play flight simulator for a while and I took a break. I put the kids to bed and read for a bit. Then it was bedtime. Once again, I snuggled beside my man. And sang to him.

Get off my pillow, quit breathin' on me
Oh shoot, now I gotta peeeee
Do do do doot, gotta pee

He told me to shut up and go to sleep. I told him to put his head next to my ear because he could probaly hear the music in myhead too. He told me he didn't want to. So, I sang.
You say go sleepy, but I'm not tired
I don't wanna, be retired....
Do do do doot, I'm not tired!

After threatening me with bodily harm and giving me a bit of a good tickling. I finally sucumbed to sleep. BUT... today's an all new day! I think I'll go sing to him in the shower. I know he'll LOVE that.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

House cleaning woes

My house is getting on my nerves. I feel this way every fall (and spring) when I'm in the middle of my eBay sales. There are piles of clothes that need dealt with and the general cleaning and then I tend to realize that all the nooks, crannies and closets also are crying for my attention.



So I clean them. Two days ago, I cleaned out the cupboard under the bathroom sink. I threw away the 2006 fall JCPenney catalog. I threw away a lot of other things too, but I think that was the oldest. I pitched the little potty seat since M hasn't used it in more than a year. Now the cupboard's tidy, but on the bathroom floor there's a couple of books I found in there, a first aid kit? and two empty baby wipe boxes. I'm not totally sure where to put that stuff. So, it's sitting there, in front of the toilet, getting stepped over or on every time someone visits the throne.



Yesterday I tackled M's closet. I think the Little People have been breeding in there. Even tho the castle people in one plastic bin aren't allowed to consort after hours with the farm people or zoo people, somehow.... I think they're breeding. Surely I didn't buy that many of them. I put up new shelves in her closet, took out some clothes, finally put away two weeks worth of laundry (even tho M thought it was very convenient to dress herself from the pile of clean clothes on her dresser every morning) and now I'm left with a small pile on her bedroom floor. The pack n play (do I still need that??), a closet organizer thingy that no longer fits in there and a couple pairs of shoes.



Today I took on the laundry room closet. There was a big bin of toys that were for taking places like to restaurants or for long car rides. Some of them are most definitely baby toys and since we don't really use car toys any more, thanks to the dvd player (Oh shut up! You use yours too! Or you wish you had one..), now there's a BIG pile on my kitchen counter of that crap. There were also about 10 mostly used up Color Wonder coloring books. Sayonnara!



So.... Now my cupboards and closets look good and the piles of crap look not so good. In another few days, they'll start to annoy me when I get hit with PMS and I'll probably just chuck it all in the trash. Thank God for PMS or my house would never get clean.

Brain fart

Since we went on our great road trip a week or so ago, we missed a session of swimming lessons. Our teacher graciously offered a makeup time for late yesterday afternoon and all day I had in my head "Swimming at 6, swimming at 6". It was the only thing scheduled on my calendar for the day, which made it pretty easy to remember.

The girls and I stayed home all day, cleaning, playing and dinking around. They wanted a $5 Little Cesaers Pizza for supper so I agreed to get that after swimming and we had snacks to tide us over until after "swimming at 6".

Shortly before 6, I sent everyone off to get ready and then I went and shimmied my way into my suit. By now it's 6:05 (my shimmying apparently took longer than I expected). As I hurried to put my shoes on, it hit me. Swimming AT 6. Not, "leave for swimming at 6". DOH!! We MISSED swimming! Did I mention, it's a 25 minute drive?? Double doh!

A asked, "Can we still go?" Um...no, we're going to totally miss our class.

G's comment had really nothing to do with the missed lesson. "Do we still get Little Cesaers??" Um..no again. I'm not driving all the way to the nearest Little Cesaers that's near swimming lessons on a day we're not going to lessons.

We all changed out of our swimsuits and went back to our previously scheduled activities, aka doing nothing.

Today I have nothing planned. I can probably handle that.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Another road trip funny

My dad's lived in the same house since he married my mom, back in '61. In the last few years, things have changed a bit around the house--the 100+ year old maple trees are coming down, the driveway's been repaved and the neighbors put up a mailbox, almost straight across from Dad's driveway.



Within the first 30 minutes of getting to Dad's, he pointed out the neighbor's mailbox and told me to be careful so I don't hit it. I'm 35 and I'm still getting driving pointers from my dad. Isn't that precious?



What's really precious is that I've apparently married my father. Because when the DaddyMan showed up, he pointed out the neighbor's mailbox and told me not to hit it. In a manner that I've taken to using when the DaddyMan pretends to be my Daddy, I said, "Oookay Denny!" (yes, Denny is DAD's name).



(While it slightly annoys the DaddyMan to be called by another man's name, he's starting to get the point that when he acts like my dad, he gets called by my dad's name. When he acts like my husband, servant, love slave..... I have a whole list of other names I use for him. ;) )



The other day when I took the girls to swimming lessons and in my effort to parallel park, I almost hit a mailbox with my mirror. From the back seat, A yelled, "Don't hit the mailbox!" and from the other backseat, G piped in with "Ooookay Denny!"



They're going to be SUCH good wives someday.

A wedding worth waiting for

My main motive for visiting Iowa last week was to go to my college roommate's wedding. Heather, her twin sister Cara (CAR-uh) and I lived together our freshman year. We've stayed in touch ever since.


The entire time I've known Heather (gulp...almost 20 years!) , she's been patiently waiting for God to bring the right man into her life. Last fall, He did. From what I hear, Heather and her man were pretty much smitten from the get go. Heather's got a wonderful testimony of God's faithfulness and the wedding SO reflected that God WILL provide and that His timing is perfect. I couldn't help but sit and cry happy tears thru much of the service. And the reception. And the drive home. I'm SO insanely beyond happy for them!



Aren't they ADORABLE?? If you could bottle bliss--this is the label you'd put on the outside.

Here's me and 'the other twin' Cara (CAR-uh). Can you tell she's related to the bride or what? They're both so stinkin' adorable. And skinny. And cute. (I could get my revenge on that cute/skinny/adorable thing tho. I lived with them. I COULD dish some dirt. I do know who the evil twin is.... (HA! These two really are the sweetest women EVER!) But.. I do still have a handfull of stories......for a price..... I will keep them to myself. Bwaaahahahaha!!)

Oops, off topic. Again....

Congratulations Heather and Jeremy! May God richly bless your marriage for many years to come!


Oh....and your wedding gift's coming. I forgot it in my eagerness to get to the wedding! Doh!

The great road trip journal

Somehow, on this road trip, I took fewer pictures than ever before. We spent a week with my folks, yet have no pictures of them. We spent two nights at my dearest friend's house and have um...5? pictures to show for that. Somehow I really managed to take pictures the day we spent at my sister's house and most of those are of little spotted puppies.


Oops.

Here's A with the puppy she deemed her favorite. Nike's his name.

Here's my sister and G and another puppy. I'm not a detail person when it comes to small hairy critters. This could be Adidas. Or as G called her, "Anus." There's nothing like hearing your child yell, "Anus! Come 'ere Anus!" to make you giggle like a 6th grader. BTW, I think the Dalmatian Club should use this as their PR photo. It took me 4 shots to get this. LOL


Here's G with all the puppies.... Nike, Adidas, Asics and Reebok. Can you tell my sister's a runner and how she picked her current litter's name?

Gotta love a little sister who can run thru your photo op and spoil the picture, don'tcha?

Here's M 'helping' the puppies climb the step. No puppies were harmed in this production. (Thank God!)


Isn't she precious?? (I might be biased!)

I was TRYING to get a good shot of all three. But if you make this picture bigger by clicking on it....you can see more clearly that ONE child didn't want to be part of a good picture. Stinker.


Aaah, that's better. No one making goofy faces in this shot!
My adorable niece and her horse. I love that they share the same haircolor.
Finally, the event the girls had been waiting for! Time to ride Shimmer! Or you could call her Pinky Pie. Shimmer spent the previous week at the county fair and was still a little pink from her "Walk on the Wild Side." G of course thought the pink paint TOTALLY make Shimmer better than ever before.

A once again was able to lead Shimmer to the fence and mount with no help. Shimmer's so patient.

My niece taught M the finer points of horsemanship. AKA--old ponies mosey slow.

More ridin' double.

Little Miss Chatterbox thought that riding with her 'big' cousin was SO cool!

Here's my other niece. And her spotty dog. Are you seeing a dog theme yet around here?


Just a tip--trying to take a picture of five children in a tree is NOT easy.

Shooting just one is a far better idea!
We got to be goofy with some other old friends too. Actually, lots of other old friends, but again... I didn't pull out my camera. I'm so blessed by my Iowa friends. I always feel like I'm 'speed visiting' or something when I go back and try to pack in visits to as many people as possible in a short time period. Inevitably, I miss someone and feel bad for months. I was fortunate to see many that I love this time tho and we had lots of fun in a short time space.


When it was time to come home, my van was suddenly fuller than before. This child even managed tho throw clothes and toothbrushes for herself and two of her siblings into a basket before buckling herself in.

The other stowaways hid in the back. See the arm by A's feet? Yep, another one.

This is what we had to see when we told them that they couldn't come along. Their mom said they had to clean house. They were not amused.

But two of them attempted to follow us home. They wanted to tie themselves to the bumper and just be towed behind. Um.....no. As much as we'd love to have you, I'm thinking riding IN the van would be a far better (and safer!) way to travel!
Whew! So there you have it. A plethora of pictures from God's country.