Saturday, July 31, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me :)

Yesterday was my 30 - something-th birthday and we had a great day. Big Daddy was at an event with the youth group all week but had helped the kids pre-plan for my big day before he left (he's a keeper, alright!). He had taken the kids out before he left and they each got me something. I love when they pick things out...and especially love when they make me things. They had wrapped everything up on Monday and oddly, the gifts seemed to multiply during the week. Now, I know they didn't leave the house without me so couldn't wait to see what was in the extra bags. They didn't disappoint. I love it! I got some of their Silly Bandz, some old batteries (always handy!), about $2 in change, a lollipop, and lot of homemade cards, notes, and potholders! I loved it so much.  Captain C had chosen to buy some chocolate and things to wrap in chocolate (Oreos, cherries, marshmallows - although, he ate all of those before I got to try them!) and had a great time melting the chocolate and making my surprise (I was ordered to my room for a bit).

Here they are after all the mess fun was ready. Tricky T made my "breakfast" drink for me...complete with Hershey's syrup (I didn't have the heart to tell him I had already had one this morning so got to enjoy a second shake of the day before 9am!). Captain C also made a morning slushy, because I like them on a hot summer afternoon. They were being so was cute.

A friend invited us for lunch, and we had a great time catching up with them after the summer. I'm sad that summer is almost over but excited to get back to Classical Conversations and a routine.

Big Daddy got home in time for dinner and took me to my favorite pizza place, Hideaway - YUM! We are friends with the manager and she ended up comping our dinner without us knowing - a sweet birthday surprise.

I noticed yesterday afternoon that I was getting a TON of hits on my site here and my biz site. They were all coming from here. I entered my story a few weeks ago on a whim and was chosen to go on her site. I LOVE her site and was so honored that she chose my story to share. Another super cool birthday surprise!! (although it wouldn't have killed more of those 1500 people to leave a little comment letting me know they stopped by....I do appreciate the few that did though...makes me smile!!).

So....all in all, it was a great way to begin my new year of life. Life is truly good! I am blessed!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

kids vs. dog

Sometimes, I wish my kids obeyed as well as my dog. Maybe it was the 2 months she spent in prison being trained that made her just thankful for her freedom but I really like being able to give a command and it happen. Not so much with my kiddos. Maybe I need to spout off 2 word commands to them instead of wasting words with fluff. You think that would help? Oh to be able to say, "Get dressed" and not hear, "But I got dressed yesterday....and this isn't very dirty...and I'm right in the middle of my game....and I don't want to wear that, it's not pink....and blah, blah, blah, whine, whine, whine." How nice if snapping my fingers would make them run to their crate, I mean room. Ahhhh....obedience.

However, they are kids, not dogs or robots, and I would haven't it any other way. My dog hasn't been making a stack of gifts on the fireplace for me for the past week, just dying for it to be my birthday. Sure, they are mostly things they found around the house...that they will likely want back (aka. their favorite Webkinz...they love it, so why wouldn't I?). Princess P found a rock in the yard a few weeks ago that I told her was pretty so she gave it to me. Yesterday, she asked for it back because, "you liked it so much I want to give it to you for your birthday." Ok, so they might not obey "all the way, right away, with a happy heart" but they don't lick themselves in public or pee outside (very often) and I sure do love them, so I think I'll keep 'em ;o)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Sleep....who needs it?

ME! That's who! Last night, I was stupid. Big Daddy was gone and I was trying to stay awake to get more work done, so at 9:30, I drank two Emergen-C drink mixes as a slushy. They said "for health and energy". I figured it would give me a little boost to keep me going for a couple of hours. I don't know what is in those little packets but I was still thinking about it at 2am when I finally made myself lay down and attempt to sleep. It took about an hour for me to finally fall asleep after that! I am one spoiled little lady that gets a good 8 solid hours every.single.night......except last night. I'm tired, folks!

Thankfully the kids slept like logs. I came out to the living room about 1 to get a book and saw Terrific T sprawled out on the couch. He wanted to sleep on the couch with Daddy gone. Princess P is still asleep in his bed right now at 9:30am (she wanted to be near C). At least someone will be rested today!

PS. I was cleaning our school cabinet out earlier today and T and P found a page of tattoos and covered themselves ;)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

On the road again.

Captain C was finished with his week at camp on Friday at 10:15. We decided to drive up to Bolivar, MO to pick him up and spend the weekend in Branson together.  Bolivar is about 3.5 hours away so on Thursday evening, we set our alarm for 4:45am in order to the be on the road by 5:30. We were taking the motorhome so wanted to allow plenty of time for....anything and everything that could go wrong.
Friday morning, we got up and woke the kids, dressed and loaded up the van and motorhome (we learned our lesson about traveling without a spare vehicle last month!). I came in to shut down the computers and they said 3:59am. Hmmm...that can't be right. Or can it? Somehow we had set our bedroom clock ahead an hour when setting the alarm the night before. So now, we are all up and ready to go a FOUR AM. wow. Oh and a side note...I set the bread maker up to have a loaf of warm bread ready for us at 5:30, but it turns out I never turned ON anyway so nothing lost there by being an hour early. We finished loading up and got on the road, but I remembered that we didn't have cash for tolls. I swung into the bank only to find that my debit card expired in May. Oops...I wondered why they were sending me another one when I hadn't lost my first one ;) UGH - not having a great start to this little road trip!! I ran back home and grabbed cash (we sold our eliptical on craigslist this week so had cash at home, at least) and met up with Winnie the Winnebago tooting down the road.
Tricky T wanted to ride with me and Princess P wanted to ride with Daddy. They both get car sick so had split a little pill to help with that. The pill, along with the early hour, made for some sleepy kiddos!
We stopped for gas and even WonderMutt was sleepy!

We made great time getting to MO and with our extra hour, even had time for a little shopping before picking up C. I'm happy to say that C had a wonderful week and we all survived our first time apart. I am also happy to say that I did get that big hug...and I don't even care that Big Daddy suggested it to him ;) So happy to have our family back together!
After we picked up C, we drove about an hour to Branson. He talked non-stop the whole was GREAT! I think if we had come straight home, we would have all gone about our day and not got to hear all the fun details of his week. One thing he was really upset about though was that he had lost his Bible before he even got to camp. We had just bought a new Bible and case for him when he was baptized a few months ago and he was really upset about losing it. I KNOW he had it when he got on the van to go to camp because I had put some money it the case for him for snacks, souvenirs, etc. He said he had looked in the van several times and all over and then left his name and church name with the campus when he left. I asked him if he had prayed about it and he said no, so we prayed right then that God would "bring hidden things to light" and his Bible would turn up for him. We kept talking about his week and about 5 minutes later, his camp leader called and said that...guess what...they found his Bible in the van about 2 minutes ago. Why am I not surprised? Praise the soon as we asked, He answered! Woohoo!
We got all set up at the campground and headed to Moonshine Beach to hang out. It was so much fun.
The next day we hit Silver Dollar City. It was so much busier and hotter than when we went in May but we still had a great time. The family talked me into riding Tom and Huck's River Blast. We might as well have jumped into a river for how wet we ended up. Gross...but a good memory with the fam ;)
A few more pics from the day....

We had a great day and were ready to crash when we got back to the campground. We drove up to WonderMutt staring out the windshield of the motorhome waiting for us. I think she sat there all day long! I wonder what the neighbors thought ;)

We made it home safe and sound today after a great weekend that also included a little shopping, a little Cosby Show (picked up a DVD of the "best of" and the kids are loving it...actually they are watching it now while I am typing this), a little reading (I read two more novels this weekend!), too much sugar (I fell off the "no Coke" wagon during my 4am drive...but am climbing back on it tonight), and a lot of family fun. We bought this motorhome for "forced family time" and it is working! How often in the real world do I take time to sit and watch Tricky T build the Great Pyramid and Sphinx out of rocks? I so love our new adventure!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Boys are gross...

aka. I just cleaned the boys' bathroom. Eeewwww! Admittedly, I should do it more often and it might not be as bad but still...eeewwwww! How do they make such a mess? They take turns "cleaning" the bathroom but it would seem that that doesn't include the toilet area. And I can't blame them...not my fave job either. Now, let me preface this by saying that I have never been a boy so maybe I am way off here, but is it really that hard difficult to aim into a 18" bowl of water? I wouldn't think so. Then what is the problem? We have company coming next week (I'd link her blog but she only has a posts...*sigh*) and after that, I'm going to start making sure they clean their bathroom 'til it shines like the top of the Chrysler Building ("We love you, Ms. Hannigan.") and maybe Princess P will start using it again too.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

C goes to camp

Captain C is going away this week to church camp. It is really the first time he has been away from home without us for more than a night! He is SO excited and I know he will have a great time but it is hard for me to let him go. I did a lot of senior pictures this spring and I can't imagine what those moms are feeling when their babies go off to college.  They are growing up way too fast and I know our time will be here before we know it. *sigh, pass me a tissue, please*

I had t and P make cards for him and we hid them in his suitcase for him to find during the week. Tricky T wadded his up and started crying. He kept saying he didn't know why he was crying but when I asked him if he was going to miss C, he said, "I think so." Tonight, when I was kissing the boys goodnight, t said, "I don't want C to go to camp." They fight like cats and dogs most days so it is reassuring to see how much they do love each other. C says he is just going a week and doesn't see the big deal...and he will probably only miss us at night and towards the end of the week ;) That's fine because I will miss him enough for the both of us!

I'm praying he learns a lot about himself and grows by leaps and bounds in his walk with the Lord. Oh, and has a great time and is returned to us in one piece. If he gives me a big hug when he sees me again and tells me how much he missed me, that will be a bonus ;o)

Here is a picture of him that I took yesterday while we were at the park. He found this rock that looked like a "C" :) Man, I love this kid...even if he is growing too fast!

I'll try to not make a scene when I drop him off in the promises though :(

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Bless You

I have a hard time with people who beg for attention. Honestly, it totally shuts me down. You know what I am talking about. People that are constantly needing a pat on the back or reassurance that people care. It's tiring.

We are born egocentric, but should outgrow it at some point, right? I see this in my kids and am trying to curb it. They will do something and look around to make sure you are looking. While I am happy to pat THEM on the back (they are pretty awesome - haha), we would like to teach them to look to the Lord for approval and not to others. It is ok to do something totally cool and only you and God know.

I had dinner with a couple of sweet friends last night. One is having a legitimate issue with someone else and instead of being hateful, she is praying for that person. Praying blessings for her children, marriage, finances, etc.  Wow. That hit home with me. Instead of being annoyed at someone, when they clearly are insecure and crying out for attention, I am going to start praying for them.

So.....if you happen to suddenly fall into many blessings, who knows, maybe I am praying for YOU ;)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

ask your mother

A friend told me last week about her doctor's advice for when her kids are acting up in public. You say, loudly enough for the onlookers to hear, "Just wait until I tell your mother how you were acting today." or any variation of that.

Last night, I thought of this advice.

P and I had a girls night - went to dinner, shopping, and met her friend (and mine) for dessert at Freckles.  So, dinner goes well...she is a hoot, quite frankly. Then we went to the store to look at clothes. P says, "Why does that person in the wheelchair have a boy's face but girl's clothes on?" Let me back up and say that P's volume button seems to be broken lately. She has loud....and...well....still loud. Totally innocent question from a 5 year old (the girl had short hair and no makeup but was still clearly a girl)...but one of those times that I wanted to say, just as loudly, "We better hurry so your MOTHER doesn't worry about you being gone so long".

At what age do kids get a filter?

Saturday, July 3, 2010

laundry soap

I am not Susie Homemaker, by any means, but I can make a mean batch of...laundry soap ;) Several friends were wanting to know how to make it so I took some pics while we were making it today. It is so easy that even I can do it!

You need
1 cup Super Washing Soda (get at Reasors or Homeland)
1 cup Baking Soda
2 cups Borax
1 Bar of soap - I have used Zote, Fels-Naptha, Dr. Bronners Pure-Castile Soap - I like the Lavendar scent..your clothes don't end up smelling but it is a nice surprise when you open the container to start your load. I usually use Zote or Fels-Naptha because they are cheaper and you can get them at Reasors.

The hardest part is shredding the bar of soap. We use our old cheese grater and do it on the finest setting. Big Daddy usually gets called in part way through this because I don't love this part ;) The dryer the soap, the easier it is to grate so leave it open for a few days before you start. Also, you can't grate the entire bar unless you are super woman so I save that last inch of soap and keep it in the laundry room to rub directly on stains before I throw them in the wash.

That's it. Mix all these together in a container and you are ready to start. However, I have added a few things to mine during the year or so that I have been using it. I found that clothes were starting to look a little dingy as the year went on so I add in 1 cup of Clorox2 to the mix when I make it.

Then, recently, I started seeing yellowing on my whites, so my friend CW hooked me up with a bluing agent to counter act that. It just take a couple of drops in a load and I think it is helping.

I have an old ice cream bucket that I use to store mine after it is made. We usually double the recipe and put it in the bucket, close it and shake it up, baby. You use 1 TBSP per load. I found the TBSP at a garage sale for a .25 and just leave it in the bucket. This was before it was mixed well but you get the idea.

Easy peezie, lemon squeezie :)

Good news....

Back to "normal" today :)

Now to enjoy the weekend!! Happy 4th! Thank you, Lord, for our freedom!

Friday, July 2, 2010

We love you, Ms. Hannigan!

Do you ever have days when you feel like Ms. Hannigan? Today was one of those days when it was annoying me just to hear the kids laughing and cutting up. ("Do I hear happiness in there?") Why? No idea. Really, they are good kids. Today was just one of those days where everything (and everyone) bugged me. I always say if more than one person is bugging you, it is most likely YOU with the problem and not them. So I clearly have a problem b/c a lot of people are bugging the fire out of me...including those that I love the most.

Although it wouldn't have killed the bank teller to fork over a couple of lollipops to keep the kids from asking for the next 5 minutes why they didn't give them lollipops, would it?

Now to watch the fireworks from our front yard b/c Princess P stepped on a bee (that I had just thrown out of the pool when I was cleaning it - oops) and got stung. Her piggy looks like a vienna sausage sticking out of her little foot. So we hated to make her walk/stand at the high school :(