Sunday, April 30, 2006

Just sitting here...

Why is it that when there is more than usual to do, the more I want to just sit here and waste time on this computer?  I think I can actually answer this question (for once!).   Let's see...the kids are all asleep, I've got peaceful music on the radio, the couch is comfy, I've been without internet all day long, dh will be home from work in another 1.5 hours, and I really don't feel like folding more laundry and mopping the floor.


So here I sit visiting my friends.


And if you are procrastinating and sitting comfortably, head on over to read HomeschoolCPA's latest fabulous entry.  Carol discusses Money Myth #4: Homeschooling is Expensive...this is the fourth of five articles she writes about money myths that trip up homeschoolers.


SteveWalden talks about the new-fangled vitamins for kids.  I still remember when my brother ate a whole bottle of Pac-Man vitamins...totally freaked my mom out.  Funny how we do the dumbest things when we're kids and still somehow manage to survive to adulthood!


On a more serious note, please pray for Julie's mom.  She's in the hospital and they believe she has had a stroke.  Julie posted a beautiful pic of her former-homecoming-queen mom-- talk about a beautiful, classy looking lady!


Well, it's been a long day.  My sister Coco has still not had her baby.  Please pray for her as she is having contractions (although not consistent) and is quite uncomfortable (I'm sure y'all can relate!).  Dh has been at work and will be back later tonight.  Dozer had a fever yesterday and is a little better today, although we couldn't go to church since fever is a no-no in the nursery.  And Dash scored another goal in the last soccer game for this season (hooray!!!-- on both the goal and the last game...hehehee).  They also finally won their first game 8 to 6.  While it is non-competetive at this age, they always seem to keep score in their heads.  Not bad...especially when it was a bzillion degrees outside!


Okay, nothing else going on here.  Just kinda procrastinatingly bored.  Anything fun in your neck of the woods?



Marsha (who is planning on getting offline right after I submit this entry, unless Coco shows up on my Messenger friends list...or I decide to waste even more time surfing the net)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Happy Birthday to ME!

Not normally one to toot my own horn, I am taking this time to tell myself Happy Birthday!  hehehee...  It has been such a great day so far. 


My in-laws are visiting and brought me such a wonderful present-- blue cornflower CorningWare (an 8x8 square baker and an oblong tray with carrying rack)-- very lovely!  We went out for lunch and they have volunteered to watch the kiddos while dh and I go out tonight.   I am definitely a lucky-ducky today!


I have NO idea what we are going to do...maybe a movie (but there's usually nothing good to see), maybe a little shopping (although we've been spending too much money on our little house remodeling), maybe just some good ice cream and conversation... Oh and some coffee for me since my dear friend Suzanne got me a Starbucks gift card with waaay too much money on it (you just wait until it's YOUR birthday...I'll get you back!).   It really doesn't matter what we do, so long as we're together...and uninterrupted conversation is a welcome change from the usual noise that accompanies dinner at our house (although I'm sure I'll miss that noise one day!).


Thanks so much to those who have already sent their b-day wishes!  And in case any of you were wondering, I am not turning one today (unlike what my profile may say) but am in fact turning 31. :-)  I'm a weirdo that really likes getting older!  Seriously.  I think it just gets better and better!!!


And while I have y'all on the line, please pray for my sister Coco as she is possibly in labor right now... It's a very good day for little Emily to be born!  Plus, she'll have a fabuloso birthstone!


Hope y'all have a great night!  Don't wait up for me, okay?




Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Electricity and time for a change

Our electric bill is going up every month.  Last year, the fuel surcharge was almost as much as our usage bill.   I just got a letter from our electric company saying that they are anticipating the fuel surcharge to be more than the usage bill this year!  With temps already being in the 90s, we cannot afford another summer of high bills-- especially with  summer being almost year-round here in Houston!


We have put in additional insulation, got all new double-paned argon gas windows, attic fans, radiant barrier paint on the inside of the attic, new front doors, and caulked and sealed every nook and cranny.  Plus, we have one of those programmable thermostats (set at 77) and ceiling fans in almost every room of the house.  And yet, our bill for March was still over $160.  That means that when it really gets hot, it will be waaaay over $350 (at least).  I have no idea what prices are in other parts of the country, but that is really high!!!


Since we will be in the market for a new roof soon (a metal one this time), I thought I'd start researching alternative energy sources. Do any of you use photovoltaic cells (solar energy)???  Do you know anyone who does?  I would LOVE to hear any advice, info, etc. that you can share about your experiences!!!



Monday, April 24, 2006

Finally...a good day!

I have been having a very long string of very bad days.  It all came to a head on Saturday when dh was puking, the baby was fussing and very snotty, Tank was coughing and snotty, dh had to go to work very sick, I had work to do (toting along said fussy, snotty baby)...milk poured onto the carpet, bonking my head really hard, previously mentioned fussy baby playing in the poopy toilet with water ALL over the bathroom, and then to top it all off--- bleach spots on my brand-new, really cute pair of brown mid-length capri pants (the kind that roll up at the bottom)...and the bleach spots happened while cleaning up the aforementioned icky bathroom mess.


Whew!  I am SO glad that God gives us new days!  And lets us start over!


It had been a week long string of ultra-terrible days.  I had such a sorry poor me attitude...completely focusing on myself, my stress, my responsibilities, my poor aching head.  Instead of focusing on GOD, I was completely focusing on myself.  When am I going to stop being so selfish and prideful???  I was too busy to take the time to pray...not just the quick God help me! prayer, but to really PRAY


During this time, I was stuck in terrible traffic twice.  Both times, there were major accidents that just happened!  Ambulances were required at both and one of them involved two cars, a semi, and resulted in fatalities.  It really hit me that things could be MUCH worse!  What in the world do I have to complain about anyway?  So I had a few bad days.  So my kids were not their best because I was too busy putting out fires and being stressed out instead of turning it ALL over to the Lord.  Like an idiot, trying to shoulder my own burdens instead of doing things through Christ which strengtheneth me (Phillippians 4:13).


As I was completely stopped on the highway, I watched the life-flight helipcopter land in front of the car ahead of me.  I also saw a man holding his baby.  There was a car that was completely smashed in the right lane.  Then when I looked really close at the semi that was next to it in the far left lane, I saw a black car between that semi and the concrete barrier.


How in the world could a car fit in that spot?  And then someone walked up and tossed a crumpled carseat out.  I started to cry.  I'm not sure if the healthy baby that the man was holding belonged to that carseat or not.  Maybe it was another baby. 


I am so thankful that I was alone in my car and not involved in this accident.  I am so thankful that my children are healthy (even if they are snotty and fussy sometimes).  My bad days were simply that...bad days.  Not a lifetime of dealing with a special needs child, not battling a terrible disease, not dealing with the death of a parent or my husband.  Just a bad day.  And then my wonderful God gives me another one where I can start all over again!  I may not be guaranteed that next day or hour, but I am so thankful that I've already gotten much more than I deserve!  And I know that when I die, it will be temporary...a fleeting moment...and then I will be in the presence of Jesus!


Today, my non-talking Dozer said Good boy! as he obediently threw some trash in the trashcan.  Dh is also feeling much better today and was able to go to work without any problems.  Tonight, Dash scored a whopping THREE goals in soccer!  While we were driving home, my very sweet Tank looked at his big brother and said I'm really proud of you!  You did a really good job!  He is SO sweet, isn't he?  And to top it all off, I got a fabulous letter from my grandma today (thanks G-ma!).


It has been a good day today.  In fact, every day is a pretty good day, even when things don't go quite like I want them to.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Five Reasons Why I Love My Hubby

Gena-bena is having a new contest where you can win a whole box of See's candy... Isn't she good to have one while she's on vacation in California?


Anyhow, here are five of the bzillion reasons why I love my very dear husband:


1.  His monkey face.  He doesn't really look like a monkey.  But he can pull his ears out, puff up his cheeks, and open his eyes really wide and make the most hilarious (and cute) monkey face!  He first debuted this talent when we were dating and then it kind of fell by the wayside over our almost 10 yrs of marriage.  Now it is reserved only for special occasions like when I'm having a very, very bad day.  Grumpy, cranky old me being mean to him.  Does he retaliate and be mean back?  Nope.  He'll suddenly just look at me and make that silly face and all is well in the world.


2.  His notes.  He doesn't have the best handwriting in the world.  Actually, I'm the official form-filler-outer.  My dear hubby will occasionally leave little notes for me around the house.  A scrap of paper in my jewelry box, taped to the closet door, or on the bathroom mirror.  He's not romantic in a big, over-the-top kind of way...but it is the many, many little things (like these notes) that he shows his love and kindness to me every single day.


3.  He's a gentleman.  He always opens the car door for me.   And he always says thank you for the meal...even if it didn't turn out right.  I'll never forget the time I made jerk shrimp.  I put it in front of him and he started to eat it.  When I finally sat down and took the first bite, I totally gagged.  It was SO nasty!!!  Horrific-ly horrible.  Completely nast-ola!  I could not even swallow that first bite.  I told him he didn't have to eat it, but he didn't want to hurt my feelings.  He was able to choke down three more bites before it all went in the trash!  Yup, he's a trooper.  And I love him.


4.  He's blind when it matters.  My crazy man will look at me at the end of a long day (or at the beginning of one) and tell me I am beautiful.  Morning breath, Texas-summer-sweat kind of stinky, grouchy-cranky, or ratty old doesn't matter.  I can look so ultra-yuck and he still tells me I am beautiful.  If love is blind, he must love me A LOT because he can be so very, very blind sometimes!  And that is a very good thing.


5.  He realizes that shopping is therapeutic.  It's terrible.  All the females in my family are addicted to shopping.  It's a trait we inherited from our mother.  My very smart husband realized the value of this addiction early on.  This has been especially useful since having children.  Whenever I've had an extremely bad one of those days (which usually happens while he's at work for a few days in a row), he comes home and tells me to just leave.  Just go somewhere...have coffee with your friends, go shopping, go read a book...just go and stay out as long as you want!  It's terrible that this actually works, huh?  But I just need a few hours of alone time and then I am rejuventated and my happy self again.  I slink back home feeling a tad bit guilty of my previously bad mood and find the kids in bed, the house quiet, and dh waiting for me with a great big hug and kiss.


Yup, I LOVE that man o' mine!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A poll if you please

Coie's Almond War got me thinking about cinnamon gum... 


I have to admit to all of you that I was in the band from middle school through high school.  If any of you were fellow band nerds, then you must have spent at least a little bit of time in a practice room.  Now, practice rooms stink.  They stink like old spit that dried on the floor (which is the reality of practice rooms since stinky brass instrument players empty their stinky spit valves onto the floor).  Or the smell that is produced when someone sneezes really big (like my dad always did!).


Anyhow, my sisters and I have discussed this before and have all come to the conclusion that cinnamon gum is not our favorite.  Why???  Well, because when chewed it emanates an odor reminiscent of previously said practice rooms.  In other words, it stinks like spit.


So what say you, fellow bloggers?  Please, please take my poll so I can find out once and for all if my siblings and I are normal or just the craziest people on the planet (next to JenIG, of course!).  Oh and ignore the extra long and skinny poll box as I'm lucky to just get that thing posted!


<script language="javascript" src=""></script>

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

School's Out Forever

Growing numbers of parents are giving up on school and teaching their kids at home. Are they misguided, or have they found a better route to learning?


Read the entire article School's Out Forever from the April 6th issue of TIME Pacific Magazine.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Back home again

We just got back from our trip to Oklahoma City.  Surprisingly, the kids (including Dozer) were great the entire time.  We're normally a flying kind of family, but I got this wild hair that thought driving would be an easier option.  Crazy, huh?  Actually, it wasn't too bad and it was nice to leave and return when we wanted instead of when the flights were open enough for our family of 5 to fly standby (which can be really stressful).


We had a GREAT time at the baby shower!  Thank you so much for all of the wonderful ideas for games.  We ended up doing a game called Nuk-Chuck that sagerats came up with.  Each person gets a pacifier and whoever can spit it out the furthest wins-- talk about funny! 


I also cut a piece off of 5 different candybars and melted each on a diaper.  Guests had to guess what was on each diaper (Take 5, Kit Kat, Butterfinger, Mr. Goodbar and Reese's Cups).  I've got pics of some of them sniffing brown stuff on little diapers...I think I'll have to save some of the pics for some useful and possibly embarrassing purpose in the future (the pictures, not the diapers!). hehehee...


And the not-quite-as-funny-but-still-fun game of guessing the baby food.  I took the labels off of 8 jars of babyfood and guests had to guess what kind of baby food it was.


Anyhow, it was a fun shower with lots of food and all of my sisters and my mom.  What more could I have asked for? :-)  The kids also played well together and the guys survived taking all of the little ones to Incredible Pizza during the shower... on a Saturday... and on a holiday weekend.  Seriously, that is quite an accomplishment wouldn't you say?


Drat!  I forgot to take a picture of the baby quilt that I made for my sister.  Coco, can you take a pic of the front and back and send it to me?  This was one of the reasons why I didn't have as much blogging time the past couple of weeks.  I am not a speedy seamstress by any means!  But I am very pleased on the final product of this quilt.


Well, I better get to bed.  It's been a fun week that went by way too quickly!  If I missed anything too terribly exciting on any of your blogs, please leave me a comment to let me know, okay?  Oh and check out Gena's blog entries for this past week... Some should be congratulated while others could really use your prayers and encouragement.


Hope y'all had a very blessed Resurrection Sunday!



Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Another reason I love him...and other stuff

I thought it was bad when I dropped my cell phone in my boys' bathtub... I suppose my dh didn't want to make me feel too bad about the whole incident, so he took his cell phone for a little ride yesterday.  Yup, placed his expensive Trio cellphone in the cupholder of the riding lawnmower and mowed the front yard.  It's a very big yard.  It's a very bumpy, non-level yard.


Can you guess what happened???


You guessed it!  There will be NO resurrection of his phone!  No sirreeeeeeebobrooney!  It is now a very expensive fertilizer for the front yard...or we can use it as confetti for my sister's upcoming baby shower.  I'm sure there are a million uses for the millions of pieces of his cell phone!  teeheheheeeee... I'm trying really hard to not hold this over his head for the next....oh, say...three years or so.  Too bad it had all of his contact numbers, flight logbook, etc. on it that was not backed up.  Lesson learned, right?  Do NOT mow the lawn without your cell phone securely fastened.  And do NOT yell at the children in the bathtub while pointing at them with your cellphone.


On another note, check out the winners of the Show & Tell Contest courtesy of Gena-bena and crazy JayfromCleveland.


And does anyone have any idea what THIS is?!


Okay, I really gotta go now.  We are heading out of town to Oklahoma City and actually (gasp!) driving there.   By the way, anyone know any good baby shower games?  I'm the official gamemaster (which is a total joke if you know me) and have two games lined up.   Personally, I am not a shower game kind of person but one of my sisters has some muy bueno prizes and party favors of the non-baby variety.  Actually, she works for MAC Cosmetics in NYC and is bringing us some loot from there! :-)


Anyway, the two games I have lined up are:

The one where you melt a candybar on a diaper and people have to guess what it is.  It is HILARIOUS to see people sniffing brown stuff on a diaper...especially when the older ladies from church wrinkle their nose and get really close!  hehehe... 

The other one is baby food with the labels taken off and people have to guess what kind of baby food it is. 


So I need at least one more game.  Anyone, anyone???  I'd prefer not to do the "don't say baby" or toilet paper games...definitely not my favorite.


Have a great Easter weekend, my friends!







Sunday, April 9, 2006

Contests and a question

The entries for eyecorn's Housecleaning Photo contest are in!  Go cast your vote NOW!


And don't forget you only have until Monday (tomorrow) night for Gena-bena's (aka TOSPublisher) Show & Tell Contest.  There are some fabuloso prizes like a free TOS subscription for you and a friend, as well as being published! 


Chickadee also has a very pressing question for you nature-farmer-smartie-pants types.


Have a great Lord's day!




Thursday, April 6, 2006

First Words

Nope, I'm not talking about foreign language lessons or anything like that.  Just wondering what the first words your children learned to say.  Not what you think the gobblety-goop they just mumbled meant, but what they said on purpose.


Dozer's first word was "mommy"-- usually with a tear-stained, crying face.  He then moved on to "Yeah", a very clear and happy "Daddy!" and "Choo-choooooo" whenever he'd see a toy train (Thomas fanatics here so there are lots of those around). 


I still don't think it's fair that "mommy" is still only said when he's upset and "daddy" is always, always in a very happy, cheery voice!  The good thing is that he wakes up happy and yelling daddy, so dh will hop right out of bed to get him. :-)  Really, who could resist such a sweet wake-up call like that?  And it gives me just a few more minutes in bed!


Anyhow, that's the extent of my 17 month old's vocabulary.  The pedi commented at his check up a few months ago that he's developed well in every area but we need to work on speech.  Uhhhh...okay....  He's a baby!  And we do talk to him and read on occasion (occasionally read to him, not occasionally talk to him), but you know what?  He just didn't like books until a couple of weeks ago (and even now only for a minute or two!)....soooo....there!....  I better stop before I get pathetically defensive and mean.


Anyhow, back to the old question:  What were your child's first words?

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Good stuff from today

Since I'm pretty stressed out right now with all of my current obligations/happenings/life in general, I thought I'd relax with my laptop and my fun HSB friends.  Here are some interesting things that my friends are doing:


  • Carol (aka HomeschoolCPA) has a great post about Money Myths That Trip Up Homeschoolers (Part 1 of 5)  I can't wait to see what numbers 2-5 are! 

  • Jennie von Eggers (aka CreativeHomeschooling) showed some true pioneer spirit with her sewing project that won grand prize in a parade.  She is so creative and it encourages us all to think outside the box!

  • Check out what is going on with the Clean Heart, Clean Home Challenge that Amy (aka DandelionSeeds) is hosting.  It just started this week (and you can start ANY time!) and they are currently tackling the Front Yard.  I haven't joined the challenge yet but hope to in the next week or two when the craziness at my house slows down.

  • Check out eyecorn's latest contest!!!  You can win some awesome soap just for sending in a pic of you doing your fav chore-- all in honor of April 7th.  What?!  You don't know what April 7th is???  Why, it is NO HOUSEWORK DAY!  For real.  Seriously.  I think it should be a national holiday.

Okay, I'm feeling a lot more relaxed now...not quite as good as Calgon but not bad at all.

Saturday, April 1, 2006

Spring Forward!

Don't forget to set your clocks an hour ahead!


Now it's really late, isn't it?     And I don't get it when people say I'm losing an hour of sleep.  You'd be assuming I had the hour to begin with... It just doesn't make sense, especially to go on and on and on about it all day long...on the radio, the news...  My goodness-- just get it over with already!


I personally enjoyed moving all the clocks ahead an hour and then telling the kids it was past their bedtime. 


But Mom!  We still have 45 minutes until bedtime! 


Oh no, sweetheart, it's already 15 minutes PAST your bedtime!  So you better hurry up and get in bed.


Does that make me a mean mommy???  I probably shouldn't take so much pleasure in these things...but there's nothing like an extra hour of peace and quiet in the evening before my bedtime!  Ahhhh...