Tuesday, December 30, 2008

¡Feliz CompleaƱos!

Last year in celebration of Maggie's, Auntie Shelly's and my birthdays, we went to Chuck E. Cheese and then out to Mexican. And if you're celebrating a birthday, they dress you up in these ginormous sombreros and sing around you. It is such fun and we are hoping to do a repeat this year. Can't wait.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas, Love Grammy

The day our tub went in. It's such a big soaker tub (6' long and 31" deep) The kids are so happy Grammy got us a tub for the bathroom that works! They can even go swimming in it!!

The next day Gigi (Darrell's mom) came and helped us tile it. So here is Darrell admiring his handy work...now we just have to grout.

Here it is all grouted up. We used black grout to match our floor. I have yet to try the shower, but the tub is HEAVEN. And my friend Em just sent me some wonderfully decadent Chocolate covered Cherries bubble bath for my birthday. So I have already tried that today. Yum!
I'll follow up more once we get it all trimmed out and looking magnificent.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I'm glad we did the card yesterday.

I felt the need yesterday to get lots of the stuff I'd been putting off done. And I'm so glad I had the forsight to do it. I don't often do things ahead of time anymore. I guess I've always been better under pressure (why I don't know because I HATE pressure). But it seems this year, with all the sh!t going on, I happened to think...maybe not the best time to just wait.

My Aunt Karen was diagnosed with cancer in May and on Monday we were told that the cells are so aggresive that the liquid they were feeding her through a shunt was giving her no nutrients, but only feeding the cancer. The cancer cells were growing so quickly that they were starting to crowd her heart and lungs that she would probably be suffocated in days to weeks. But on Tuesday, my mom called to let me know Karen's doctor had called to say that they hadn't realized she was in renal failure. Her liver had shut down. She only had hours.

Well, she passed away yesterday at 4:30pm. I'm really shaken. My kids are really shaken. Its all a bit too much and selfishly I've cried about our loss. But I've not even really wept for my cousins. My cousin Ann, 31, won't be able to have her parents around for a wedding, kids, first home. My cousin Jeff, 28, is expecting his 2nd (although this will be the family's 3rd) baby and his parents won't be able to share in the joy. My cousin Matt, 25, won't be able to have his parents by his side for a promotion, an engagement, a family. This would be devastating. I remember a huge sense of loss for a father I never really had on my wedding day. My brother, who I always knew would, walked me down the aisle. But I didn't get to dance with my father at my wedding either. This is not how life should be.

But worst of all, they won't have Mom around this Christmas. She was the rock of the family and even in all our families. If you needed a sensible, responsible answer, you knew to ask Karen. One of the best pieces of advice I ever learned from her was "To pick my battles". This is what I will remember about her.

Monday, December 8, 2008


As I prepare for Christmas and lament our lack of finances, I'm slapped across the face by many struggles that others are facing. While no money is a HUGE struggle and the stress it causes is insurmountable, I have what many people are going into this holiday w/o. I have a family.

I have a great friend who just lost her second baby after years and years of trying to start a family, I have an old school buddy who just lost his father in a battle with cancer, I have a minister who's one brother is fighting a losing battle with cancer and another brother who is currently MIA overseas, I have an aunt who lost her husband a few years ago to cancer and is now herself dying from cancer.

Life doesn't seem to make sense right now. Why is it we have to struggle so, especially in this time of year when we are supposed to be grateful for the gift God gave us (Jesus people). I understand loss around Easter. It would be symbolic of his sacrifice. But Christmas is supposed to be joyful and yet it seems to be one of the hardest times of year for so many, loss/lack of family, loss/lack of finances, traveling in really crappy weather, stress.

Hopefully the arrival of the new year will bring great things to those who are feeling such loss in this current year. The promise of change in the government and the hope of change in other things will hopefully allow many of us some rest from stress.

I pray for all of you and hope for joy and an overabundance of love from everyone who surrounds you.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


The Bucket List

Hit forward and place an X by all the things you've done and remove the X from the ones you have not, and send it to your friends(including me). This is for your entire life!

( ) Gone on a blind date
( ) Skipped school.
(x) Watched someone die
( ) Been to Canada
( ) Been to Mexico
(X) Been to Florida
(X) Been on a plane
(X) Been lost
(x) Gone to Washington , DC
(x) Swam in the ocean
(X) Cried yourself to sleep
(x) Played cops and robber
(x) Recently colored with crayons
(x) Sang Karaoke :
(x) Paid for a meal with coins only?
(X) Done something you told yourself you wouldn't?
(x) Made prank phone calls
(X) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose & elsewhere.
(X) Caught a snowflake on your tongue
(X) Danced in the rain
(x) Written a letter to Santa Claus
( ) Been kissed under the mistletoe
(x) Watched the sunrise with someone
(X) Blown bubbles
( ) Gone ice-skating
( ) Been skinny dipping outdoors
(X) Gone to the movies

1. Any nickname: Brey, Ab, Abby
2. Mother's name? Lynn
3. Favorite drink? Coffee/Dr. Pepper
4. Body Piercings? Yes ears
5. How much do you love your job? Sometimes I love it, sometimes I loathe it
6. Birth Place:Sandwich, Illinois
7. Favorite vacation spot? Anywhere with my family
8. Ever been to Africa ? No
9. Ever eaten just cookies for dinner? yes
10. Ever been on TV? Yes
11. Ever steal any traffic signs? Not that I can remember
12. Ever been in a car accident? yes
13. Drive a 2-door or 4-door vehicle? van
14. Can you drive a standard car? Yep and sometimes even miss it
15. Favorite pie? Rhubarb
16. Favorite number? 8
17. Favorite movie? I think right now Penelope, but all time Little Women with Winona Rider
18. Favorite holiday? Halloween
19. Favorite dessert? Coconut tempters
20. Favorite food? Corn dog
21. Favorite day of the week? Wednesday
22. Favorite brand of body soap? Dial
23. Favorite toothpaste? crest
24. Favorite smell? Clean laundry
25. How do you relax? Hot bath, listen to music or read with a lit candle
26. How do you see yourself in 10 years? Killer gardens, busy with the kids school and maybe even teaching myself
27. Furthest place you will send this message? TN
28. Who will respond to this the fastest? I don’t care, I just thought it was kind of fun.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Some thoughts on friendship

This came on the weekly MOPS newsletter and I loved it and wanted all of my "best friends" to know this made me think of you.

Have a great day.

I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Best Friends
Marcie Ciha, Council Coordinator

My husband laughs at me when I tell him to turn up the radio because my "favorite" song is playing. My favorite song list is at least 50 songs long. I have a lot of favorites because it all depends on my mood that particular day. Each song stirs up a variety of emotions and memories.
However, I'm the exact opposite when it comes to friendships. I truly desire to have one "best" girlfriend. One person I can relate to, share the deep secrets of my heart with and connect with on a deep spiritual level. The problem is whenever I think I have found her, typically, she moves away. This leaves me completely crushed. So what is the point – why go through the heartache?
As I listened to my daughter Victoria the other day, telling me about her best friend, I realized this was a different best friend from just the other day. Yet to her, for that day, she had a best friend. It didn't matter to her the length of time their friendship would last. She was willing to invest herself in another person regardless of any future pain. Even if a friendship is short lived, her reaction to the situation is completely different from mine. She mourns the loss and tries to keep in touch, but is always eager to find another best friend. She is never cautious to reach out to another person. She gives it her all.It’s time I learned from my daughter. I want to "be" a best friend first and foremost, just like Victoria. I want to relax and enjoy my friend as long as I possibly can. It’s time to invest in someone else's life just as so many have taken time to invest in mine.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I'm still alive

It has been a long time. I'm tired and wiped out and haven't really felt like writing much. But I've decided that I have to write today to see what people think about the kids school pictures. We just got the proofs today and I'm sure about one and can't decide about the other 2.

So I like both of Gabe's and I can't decide if I like Pose B best since he's got such a big grin or if I like A best because it is a sweet little smile.
Arlingtons for me is a clear-cut winner. Pose B is fantastic!!
Maggie's I can't decide if I should have her retake them?? They're not BAD, but they don't rock you know?? I want some other opinions.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My family

For any of you who know my family, you'll know how nutty we are. Our sense of humor is usually more apparent than the average joe. But not everyone believes me when I say it. So now there is proof of the wit. Check out a collaborative effort from my cousin Matt and Uncle Jerry, with some little blurbs from other family members at www.halfpeck.com. I think it's worth a couple of minutes.

Some of you might just get a bit of in site to me.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What a day

Today I got up and got everyone ready for school, big kids at 8:10, Gabe and his friend at 8:50. Then I went to breakfast with Darrell and we went to the gift shop to take inventory on my card sales, 26 this month. That is awesome!! Afterwards, we came back home and I did some Wii Fit exercises while Darrell mowed. My favorites are the Hula Hoop and Step exercises.

Then I picked up Gabe and Bella from Preschool and got Arlington out of school so he could got to his allergist appointment. We didn't know what to expect with that. I was so relieved Darrell took the day off so he could keep Gabe and pick up Maggie and my friends son, Isaac from school. I have pictures of Arlington's visit.

Here's the concept. They take forty common allergens; ragweed, molds, pets, blah, blah, blah; and then graph your skin with numbers and begin pricking your skin forty times. Right after being pricked.

Then you sit for 20 mins to see how you react. Now, after being poked 10 times, Arlington was about ready to expire and had a hard time not crying (although nobody would have minded if he did cry).
Some of the spots started swelling right away,

others took a bit longer,

but from my eye, it didn't seem like any stayed regular. Even in just a few minutes.

around 10 mins later

The nurse came in after about 10 mins and told him to just hang tight (as he's writhing in pain and itchiness) and the dr came after the 20 mins were up. He said "Let's see what you're allergic to" and after seeing his back, he laughed and said "It'll be easier to tell you what you're not allergic to." Upon closer examination, he concluded that Arlington is allergic to everything, even the placebo. Hmm...so now we've got a plan of attack that even the Army would get nervous about. It'll be a lot of work, but we'll do a little at a time and see what happens. We've got all new medications. I'm hoping for big changes, in allergies, asthma and attitudes!!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

hello out there

So today I went on my first official "school has started and I'm all alone to myself with Millie" walk. It was GLORIOUS. I mean it. She and I walked for 50 mins. I got home and my legs were all tingly with blood flowing faster then it has in weeks. I feel so rejuvinated. I came home and drank some OJ and had a cereal bar. Isn't that crazy healthy?? I've been waking up and drinking my 3 cups of coffee before taking the kids to school. Then I come home and have a piece of fresh fruit and run Gabe and a friend to preschool. So today when I got home, I pulled down the old treadmill in the mood for a good round of exercise. But it's 80 degrees outside and I know Millie needs to get out too. So we went. The weather is supposed to hold out all week, so I'm hoping to shed a pound or two here. Fingers crossed. We've already got some trees turning and dropping leaves. The grass smells of fall. It's almost beyond blissful.

I'm going to clean out our pit of a van. I really should take before and after photos. You'd never believe the horridness of it. Have a great day!!

Oh and check out this song...

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I can't get enough of

James McAvoy. He's brilliant in all the movies I've seen him in and there is just something so endearing about him. I just keep watching the movies we have with him in them. You know, The Chronicles of Narnia, Becoming Jane (AWESOME), Atonement, Penelope (a new fav!!). I don't know exactly what it is about him, but I truly can't get enough. I want more!!

The song Cha, Cha, Cha by the Little Ones from the Penelope soundtrack. So catchy. I could not guess who was singing this song when I first saw the movie. Ah...because I'd never heard of them. Gotta check it out.

I'm also in love with Mirah's The Garden. Rockin'! Go check it all out!! You won't regret it.

Friday, August 15, 2008

what I've been doing lately

School starts MONDAY! Ack! I can't believe it. So I've been busy stuffing bookbags with all the labeled supplies. We've gotten all but our dental appts done and the dentist is scheduled. Everyone is getting crazy excited to start going. Especially I think Mom!! I am really looking forward to a set schedule and routine for all of us again.
I made the teachers gifts and I was so excited with them I thought I share with you guys.

I put the chalk board stamp on the back of the envie and the books are stamped on the inside of the cards. It's hard to tell from the pic, but the apple and supply mug are cut out and attached with a dimensional so they are raised a little but. Each teacher will get 8 of these notecards. Isn't it the cutest? I hope they love them as much as I do. Ha!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

so I chopped it off

Usually when I'm feeling helpless and out of control, I need to change something. So I chose to change my hair again. I chopped it off. I love it, but I can't get a good picture. Mostly because I've gained weight again and I hate the holdie-outies that make my chin fat so pronounced. So here's the one you're gonna get. It isn't styled particularly well nor do I look especially great, but it's me and that's good enough for now. And you can all see my messy desk. UGH!! Oh yeah, ignore the date too. My camera is off about a month...aren't we all??

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

It's my time

So it's 11:50 and I should be going to bed. But alas, it's almost midnight and I'm wired. As always, when I have something to do the following day, I get energized just about the time I need to be sleeping. Why is that? Who the heck knows. I have always been this way. That and I've not gone to be before one am for almost 2 mths. Did I mention I've been reading really good novels lately? Okay, so they're not "really good" in the traditional sense of a novel. They're not Pride and Prejudice, Little Women, Jane Eyre. They're smutty, romance novels and I can't get enough. Ever hear of Bertrice Small?? If not, you should check her out. Engrossing books that have just enough historical facts that make it almost excusable. But I'm addicted. I'm knee-deep in the Skye O'Malley series. And I've yet to read Skye O'Malley. Oh well.

So I'm mostly pumped tonight because I just watched Definitely, Maybe. Wow! This is an AWESOME movie. I loved it. Of course, I love Ryan Reynolds. Always have since Two Guys a Girl and a Pizza Place. But this movie is fast and smart. I can't get enough of that kind of movie. Watch it people. I'm watching it again already. I've gotta go to bed and read a few before finally crashing.

too long, too little

It's been a long time since I've written. Too long even. But there hasn't been much to write about in my life. I've been busy planning the upcoming MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) year and it is going really successfully. I'm trying to get in all the Dr appts I should have done in the beginning of the summer. Tomorrow is school registration day. Arlington will be in 1st and Mags will be in Kindergarten.

Arlington has been taking swimming lessons this week and last. It's been a very exciting time for him. He's a natural swimmer which has really helped him out. We have bible school next week and that will be such an exciting time for all of the kids. They so look forward to seeing all of their friends after a long summer of seeing a few friends here and there.

I'm sure once school begins and our lives have less "freedom", I will find more time to write. I've always been better with a schedule and some boundaries.

Monday, June 30, 2008

This is me

I know it's been a while since I've last written and things have been pretty crazy here. The summer always seems impossible to me with all of its unstructuredness. Some days it's almost too much for me. I hardly ever see my type-A personality coming out, but when I don't have a routine, it comes screaming at everyone around.

But today I got an e-mail from the MOPS international and it really hit home. This is something we're going through and I feel a bit buried most days. It's good to read how someone else is handling it. Ours is not because of Darrell's job, but just life in general. I hope if any of you are going through the same thing, this can bring you some peace.
Embracing Simplicity
Jolita Peterson, Council Coordinator
For the past year, our family has been experiencing very lean finances due to difficult and unexpected circumstances with my husband’s career. Financial troubles can be emotionally overwhelming, at times pulling an entire family down into a quagmire of hopelessness and helplessness. For a while I fumed and fussed, resisted everything about our situation and watched my attitude descend into despair, along with our checking account balance. Gradually though, as reality set in, I began to look for small blessings alongside the daily struggles of spending cutbacks. At Christmas, I rejoiced that I didn’t have to join the masses heading to the mall. I’m spending less time running errands since I’m buying less (and saving on gas at the same time!). I’ve been amazed at what we can do without.Our family has grown stronger during this past year, no question. I’ve discovered the joy of making pizza with my kids instead of ordering take-out. Rather than renting or going to the movies, we’ve been reading together more often as a family. My husband offered to highlight my hair for me since a salon visit was out of the question – and we created another unforgettable bonding moment in our marriage (and he did a great job!). We’ve also been blessed by countless friends and family members – hand-me down clothing, shoes, prayers and support, and – during some very lean months – food, gas cards and homemade meals. When I’m tempted to whine about our circumstances, I can always find something to be thankful for – health, friends, family, a roof over our head and food on our table. Do I get tired of telling my kids “no” when they ask for things? Of course. Am I looking forward to more financially stable days ahead? Absolutely. But here and now, in our present circumstances, I’m choosing daily to embrace simplicity and find joy in small ways.
Prayer From a Mother's Heart
Dear God, teach my children to be thankful in all circumstances. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Summer haircuts a la Papa

This is Gabe's I know where your family lives look. I wanted sweetness and light, but again, he does his Papa proud and completely disregards what I ask.

Here I was able to get a cuter picture of all of them. I still don't love this look, but after 3 years of asking, I've conceded and let the arguement die.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

My family will need some prayers

Hey there everyone. I have been busy busy busy with painting and planting still this spring. And baseball is in full swing. We have our last days of school tomorrow for preschool and on Tuesday with 1 hr on Thursday for Arlington. Life has been pretty great for us.

But then last night I got a call from my mom. Her sister Karen, who just lost her husband a little over 3 yrs ago to cancer, has cancer herself. She had some of it removed and we are just waiting to see what the drs say. I'm not sure if someone knows more and it's just too hard to write it right now. But this seems crazy that cancer could strike them twice. Neither of them smoke and lived pretty stand up lives. Larry's seemed pretty much a result from his parents having smoked. But Karen's is a huge shock! Please, please, please pray for her and her 3 kids. It will be a trying time for everyone.

I love you all.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Do you post your family pictures online? Read this.

I forgot to credit this post to Claudine Hellmuth. It only took seconds to get the letters to the senators because they have prewritten letters. All I had to do was type in my personal info and they plugged and chugged. So please take a second to check it out for yourself. I know that there are still plenty of people out there who could get the pics and use them illegally, but it's nice to know that there would be legislation against it.

Friday, May 09, 2008
do you post your family photos online? read this!
There are two bills that are coming up in the House and Senate that will change copyright as we know it.They were shot down once before because of action against it --- but now they are back as bill numbers H.R. 5889 The Orphan Works Act of 2008 and S 2913 The Shawn Bentley Orphan Works Act of 2008If you post your family photos on Flickr, anywhere on the internet or on your blog read on!Could you imagine if someone used your child's photo in an unsavory advertisement and you had no say and no rights to make them stop using it! This could easily happen if these bills are passed. There has already been an instance of Virgin Mobile using unauthorized Flickr photos of children in advertisements & billboards and that is before this law was proposed. We do not need to make it easier for them to steal your family photos!If you are posting your photos online, you should read below and then send a letter (there is an EASY fill out form on the Illustrator Partnership web site all you do is enter your info and press send!)Takes 1 minute!!!This is NOT a hoax. This is FOR REAL. And it is scary. Some people say us illustrators and designers are being alarmist, but I would rather err on the side of caution, defeat this bill and keep my copyrights as they are now. These bills were shot down once because of strong resistance from Illustrators, designers and photographers we can defeat these bills again!This is text from the Illustrator Partnership web site:
Due to the lack of publicity about this bill, the most innocent victims of this plunder – those who put images online - are still completely unaware of it. Who am I talking about? Average American families who have enjoyed the internet as a way to share the happiest, and even saddest, moments of their lives with their friends and family across the country, and even around the world, through the wonders of technology. Google has already said they plan to use these orphan works in the millions. Why should companies like this be allowed to to harvest our property from private web pages, blog sites, share sites and the like?On all my illustration and licensing boards we have been talking about it for weeks but now the day of reckoning is almost here and not enough people know about it to help us strike it down in the Senate. We need to make our feelings heard.If you want to protect your rights go here and send a letter. It only takes 1 minute. Here is the link. Then tell all your friends!Thanks to everyone posting on their blogs and message boards about this important issue! Super thanks to my friend Tim Holtz for also posting and linking here. Getting the word out and getting people to send in letters is so important right now. it really only takes a minute via this widget! Time is of the essence!thank you!!!EDITED: Saturday at 12:50Because this is such an involved and confusing topic, I am directing you to Tammy Browning Smith. She is a lawyer for the licensing and craft industry and she has posted to her Arts and Crafts Law Blog where you can get really informed answers from her, here's the link: http://artsandcraftslaw.blogspot.com/

Friday, May 9, 2008

So much in a short time

My life has been completely crazy and it seems as though the crazy train just ain't stoppin'. Last week was the birthday week. This past week has been the doctor week. Like almost everyone else I know, I hate changing doctors. I hate finding a new office that accepts the kids insurance. I hate explaining all the issues they've had up to this point. I hate the small talk. I hate the nervousness they have (mostly Maggie) leading up to the appointment. I myself haven't been to a doctor since Gabe was 1yr and that was 2 1/2 yrs ago. I haven't been to a regular dr for 8 yrs and the dentist for 11 yrs. I have some serious catching up to do. But I'm getting the kids squared away and I'll do mine eventually (maybe).

So Gabe went first. His was Monday and he was feeling pretty good. We went and I talked about his constant snotty nose (or as he'd say knotty). I talked about how he doesn't say S's ever at the beginning of words and how he seems to be getting worse about all consonants at the beginning and end of words and now just makes one gigantic mess of a word with his sentences. Its horrible. We also discussed his frequent ear infections as of late and his glands that are always swollen. (Let me tell you folks, there are days I feel like I have Munchhausen and they'll just drag my kids away as I scream in my straight jacket.) But the results are always there and the dr took me seriously. We are trying Benadryl for the runny nose. I will be starting one breathing treatment of albuterol to see if his cough at night is truly an asthmatic cough as the dr suspects. We will be going back in 3 mths so the dr can check the size of his glands again. He is not really happy about those. They are not quite big enough to immediately suspect cancer, but he is a bit concerned. He is looking into some information on Gabe's allergies/sensitivities to grapes and apples. The dr seems to think there is something else to that and just doesn't know yet.

But the biggest thing...the doc said that he'd better really check out his ears. But there was so much wax in them that he had to go get the scoop. Ugh, it brought back horrible memories from my childhood when the ent would grab long things and shove them down my ears. And I never really understood why he was doing it. Ick. So he scooped and scooped. And after about 5 times, he could see Gabe's eardrum. Which again, had fluid behind it. So doc decided to pull out this contraption that sent puffs of ears with a really irratating beep and then read how much his eardrums vibrated (I'm guessing very similarly to how bats use sonar). Well, Gabe's eardrums didn't vibrate AT ALL! So we're of to an audiologist. No wonder we're constantly screaming at the boy. And mom said that is exactly what I went through. The same thing. So we'll see what happens next.

Then it was Maggie's turn the next day. There wasn't much with her except for the issues with pooping. But the night before she hadn't slept well and complained of an earache. In the office she was a bit warm and really weepy. Actually she cried a couple of times and I'm pretty sure if she could have, she would have run to the van and never gotten out w/o the promise of never returning. But I don't break easily and made her stay. She had pretty good (or bad) infection in her ear, but the doc hoped she could tough it out a day or two and let it run its course. If not he prescribed some amoxicillin, but we didn't need it and never had it filled. Although I'm sure nerves got the best of her because by the time we got home, she was throwing up. She stayed home from school and just layed on the couch outside under the umbrella as I scraped and painted. And we have a course of action for her bathroom routine. There were some extremes mentioned like enemas and probing, but I thought that might be a bit traumatic for her AND myself. So we opted to try some prescription laxatives for a few weeks and some scheduled bathroom time. We hope to resolve this issue soon. Other then that, she's growing and gaining weight appropriately and he wasn't all that worried about her at all. Whew!

That same day, Arlington had baseball practice from 5:15-6:30 so dinner has to be early and I had to go to a meeting by 7 pm so bedtime was fast. I hate days like this, but luckily a lady from our church was willing to come to our house while the kids were in bed to sit FOR FREE. Thank goodness for good people.

I also got the side of the garage painted. Thanks to Darrell for doing some scraping. Although I would have done a more thorough job, it would have taken me another week just to scrape. So I suppose having it done enough for now is fine.

I have trim work to do now with the darker green and painting the window frames white so they look like our new windows on the house. But won't that be great? It almost looks like a nice garage. I also will be mulching along the side which should really improve the look.

Here are some pics of the kids playing outside.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

our shade is no more.

Our trees in front of our house have been dying since we moved here and they are starting to fall apart (quite literally). So the city has decided to cut out the worst one and have put the other on their list of to-dos. It was all quite exciting to the kids Saturday morning when they started. Here are the pics of it all happening.


The tree is starting to fall
Starting to chop it up
Not much left
It's gone

Things I've been busy doing.

First on Friday I chaperoned Arlington's field trip to the Bloomington Children's Discovery Museum.
Then on Saturday I went to the White Sox game with Darrell and a couple from his work. They won. It was AWESOME. Nick Swisher totally rocked that night. Yippee.

Then Saturday we celebrated Arlington's 7th birthday with my brother's family, Mom, and my grandparents and Auntie Karen. It was a really great time.
Then on Tuesday I went again with the preschool this time to the Bloomington Childrens Museum. Darrell got to come also so that was really nice.
Tuesday night Arlington started baseball. Summer is really gearing up to begin already.
Last night we made star cupcakes for Arlington's birthday treat today. It is officially his birthday. And Happy May Day to all!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My new favorite song

Okay, so aside from Jason Mraz's I'm Yours, which I'm totally in love with because it just makes me feel good, I LOVE Matt Costa's Mr. Pitiful.

Let me know what you favorite song right now is. I've got a list a mile long in addition to these, but when these 2 come on, I almost have to stop what I'm doing to listen.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


So...what's been going on in my life? Nothing. The weather has been gorgeous. I've been walking, walking, walking. The kids have been playing outside. We've been enjoying nature. I stamped some Mothers Day cards, sympathy cards and masculine birthday cards with my mother. Then I made Arlington's birthday invitations. It seems crazy to me that I am making 7th yr birthday cards. 7 yrs that boys has been a part of our family in less than 2 weeks. Just 1 week and 2 days to be exact.

Oh well, I will move on and continue watching them grow up. Life will continue zooming by. Baseball was supposed to start tonight, but apparently my prayers were answered by a cancellation because of team changes. This was heavenly. I'm not ready for summer stuff yet. We just started the spring. It seems like summer is getting shoved down my throat like Christmas has been lately. Lets take things one day at a time here people!! Sheesh.

I wanted to give a shout out to two of my friends that are expecting babies! Aaron and Kelli are now expecting their addition within days. And Ryan and Brooke are in the 2nd trimester from what I've gathered. This was such exciting news to me.

Another of my friends, Sandi from Henry, has just miscarried and I'd love if you guys could say a little prayer for her too.

I'm sending out big cyberhugs to you all tonight. Oh...and I'm feeling fantastic after an Andrew Lloyd Weber American Idol. Hoorah for broadway!!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

my cut and my work

So I think I finally have a few pictures I'd be happy enough with here to show off the cut. I straightened it today with the flat iron. Those things are amazing.

And I've been busy painting the garage doors. Here are pics from when we first bought it, when Darrell painted the green and the door I finally got scraped and painted. Isn't it coming along nicely?

Friday, April 11, 2008

some local business shout-outs

So I don't know if any of you know but I have begun to sell my cards at a local gift shop. The shop's name is Parkside Cottage. While I was taking inventory there the other day, Darrell decided to browse and noticed some coffee syrups and other things like that. I just found that they have an online store. This place is Java & Co. I recommend all of you come to Henry to visit me and these two wonderful businesses. And then we could stop by The CoffeE Cup.

a whole lot of nothin'

So I just felt like writing. Nothing much happening here. Thank goodness the kids are all healthy. I'm still healthy and so is Darrell. Life is pretty much fine. We had pretty nice weather yesterday, so I spent a lot of time scraping the garage and the doors. I still have much to do, but it will look fab when it's done. I should be taking progress photos.

Today is blustery almost. It was gorgeous and sunny this morning at 7, but within an hour it had started getting cloudy and chilly. Then the rain came. It was mostly just drizzly. The rain had plenty of breaks though so Arlington was able to have recess outside, Darrell and I went for a walk to get coffee and oil and filter. Then when I got home, my friend Mary Jo called to see if I wanted to walk and get the kids from school. So we left about 40 mins early and walked around Stoner Park (that's really the name!). As we started walking home with the kids, it started sprinkling again. Luckily it wasn't much.

I feel great with the exercise I got today. I love that feeling after a good workout.

Do any of you notice you cry more that you're older? Or is it just me? I have been watching American Idol and this week was the Gives Back week. So they show kids in America and Africa that desperately need help. And I just sit and ball. It's pitiful. I watch movies and tear up. I cry because I'm tired and worn out. I'm sick of crying. I can't decide if its from exhaustion or hormones or from having kids or just age. Probably its a combination of it all. I'll be glad for nice outside weather so I'll spend less time watching tv. That'll mean less crying, I hope!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

It's almost here...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am such a dork, that I've subscribed to a Wii newsletter just to find out when the Wii Fit will be here. And it will be May 21st. I think I'm requesting it as my Mother's Day present. I don't know when Mom's Day is, but I'm guessing it's only about a week off. How perfect will that be?? Check out the link to all the cool things this will do. Yippee!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

a worthy cause

I think we all can do a little something to make a big difference. So, to go along with the fitness challenge this month here is a link to go check out. Or click on the cute little advertisement on my page. Feel free to add one to your page!!

I hope everyone who reads my blog is willing to give this a shot. I'd wager that most of us have a brita filter somewhere in our house and why not do a little more?

hello folks

Hey there. A few questions for all y'all.

First...do you enjoy the music player on my page? I love having music, but sometimes I don't want it. So I'll turn it down or just off. But I know people who absolutely hate it. So I'd like to know the majority vote here.

Second...have you tried to subscribe to this blog and had issues? I was e-mailed by a friend who is having issues. And she is using the same subscription service on her page, so I'm not sure of the issue. I tried another of my e-mail addresses and it seemed to go, but I don't see the address yet on my maintence page. Let me know if you tried and it doesn't work.

So that's all for my questions. As for life, we're pretty good. Everyone seems to be on the mends. We are going to switch drs, so maybe that should help. Yesterday was a relatively beautiful day, but today is rainy and stormy. I'm really looking forward to spring. I don't mind storms, but it's still COLD!

I love you all and hope this finds you well.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

this is dumb I know but...

I'm watching American Idol (hey, that's not the stupid part of this post!!!!) and they are showing some past idols and I realized that one of my favorite couples had their twins on this show. What are the odds?? So here I've put the pictures for you to decide.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Found another new band

They are newer I'm sure because they don't have many songs that I can find. But their sound is incredible. I'm going to try to find more on them. We'll see. But check 'em out and let me know what you think.

The Paper Raincoat

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Here are the kids playing playdoh

We made this homemade playdoh. They got to pick their colors and it really made the night go by much smoother. Yea for playdoh and simplicitic fun!

Yea for good days

The sun is bright and almost warm. I have 3 kids that have been playing well building, inventing, pretending. A husband who is sound asleep still after returning home early this morning from work. And I feel great. My coffee is delicious, the dog is playing quietly next to me. Life is good people. We will go outside and play and everyone will feel fantastic.

Last night was a good night too. We made playdoh, a coconut cake, pudding for dessert and have plans to make jellobeans today. I got a super cute craft magazine yesterday and we may make something out of that. These are the days that remind me to be grateful to be a mom and wife. It's okay to just enjoy life.

Horray for spring and feelings of "rebirth"!!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

a new rockin' singer

Okay, so she's not so new, but I've just found her music and I don't know why I haven't heard of her before. Was I just not listening?? Maybe I just overlooked her music because I wasn't in the mood for it before. But now I'm loving her. Her name is Missy Higgins. She also makes me want to chop off my hair again. Hmm...so much to consider in my life.

Others I think you should check out if I haven't told you about them yet are Joshua Radin, Tegan and Sara, Rachael Yamagata, Schuyler Fisk (yes girls, she starred in Babysitter's Club), Yael Naim (she sings mostly french, but you know the rockin' Apple Laptop commercial? Well it's her. So I've linked to the video, so you can truly enjoy a song you can understand), Jem (she's been around a while, but I love her), the Fratellis (they just rock!), and the Chamber Strings.

Let me know if you've seen or heard any new stuff. Or maybe an old favorite. Like REM or Barenaked Ladies or Guster perhaps?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Easter Pics

Hey there. The Easter pics are here. I'll put a few here and the rest on Flickr. I'm so glad they turned out as well as they did. Last year's were not so good.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Deep thoughts, by everyone but me

That's going to be the name of the next blog I make. I seem to keep finding words that inspire me, yet I can't think of anything myself. I guess that's all part of learning. Anyway, I get a daily e-mail from Dr. Jon of PetPlace and today it had a link to this letter. I think it is genius and if we could all live by thes, we'd be a great nation.

I Believe...Read it - it will inspire you
By: PetPlace.com User

This is a wonderful inspirational email that we wanted to share with you. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

I believe...That we don't have to change friends if we understand that friends change.

I believe...That no matter how good a friend is, they're going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.

I believe...That true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.

I believe...That you can do something in an instant that will give you heartache for life.

I believe...That it is taking me a long, long, LONG time to become the person I want to be.

I believe...That you should always leave loved ones with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I believe...That you can keep going long after you think you can't.

I believe...That we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Things we've been up to...

So I took the kids to the dr to find out why the heck we've been dealing with puke and poop for as long as we have. They sent me home with rubber gloves and containers to collect stool samples. Oh yea, that's what I want to do. Spend more time with their body "fluids". Great. But the dr also decided that Arlington indeed had a cough due to his asthma and should be on a nebulizer and prescribed a new allergy medicine. So now he does his nebulizer and allergy meds 3 times a day and takes his Singulair nightly. His vomiting has been eliminated.

When I got back from the dr, Gabe's preschool teacher called and in conversation wondered if Gabe was allergic to anything else like he is to grapes. Then I remembered thinking before the holidays that Gabe was allergic (well, they're really sensitivities, allergies would be life threatening reactions like some have to strawberries or nuts) to apple juice. But in the hustle and bustle, I'd forgotten why I wasn't getting apples and juice here. I thought it was because the price of apples had gone up a dollar per pound. So when prices went down again, I bought more and started poisoning Gabe again slowly and adding more stress to my life. We've eliminated apples from his diet and solve his sick issues. Sometimes I feel like such an idiot!!

For the last week, I've been bombarded with headaches. Two of them have been severe ones and one was a migraine. I'm sick of this. And I'm pretty sure Darrell is too!! I might have to go to the dr soon if it doesn't let up.

Tomorrow is the last day of school until after spring break. It is wear your art day, so we made t-shirts after school. Here are the results of our art project.