Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas '08

One last attempt to get a Christmas post in before the New Year. Happy New Year!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

More Holiday Cheer

Baby Girl got a fancy doll from Grammy. Grammy said she wanted her to play with it and not just have it sitting on a shelf looking pretty. We all thought that was a good idea until we opened it up to find her porcelain face, hands and feet. We all cringed as Baby Girl drug her across the kitchen floor and heard heard the dolls feet clanking together. We all collectively decided it would most likely be the Little Guy that would bust her face open. I had to put it back in the box.

We spent Christmas afternoon at Grammy's house. It must be a wonderland for kids. She has this bookshelf full of "stuff" that they shouldn't touch and yet they always pull everything off and rearrange it. At Christmas she puts these annoying little singing things at the bottom so they can play with them. I'm glad she has that stuff for them because I can't stand it. I have a few that have been given to us and didn't even pull them out this year. I have a low tolerance for singing trees and snowmen playing pianos. I do leave out the Polar Express Santa that continuously says "The magic of Christmas----lies--- in--- your--- heart." (and you must hear his rendition). Grammy also has baskets of glass ball ornaments under her tree (I don't know why). You can do that sort of thing when you don't have kids? Twice Baby Girl went over, picked up two and tapped them together. They shattered into a million pieces. We came away with no blood shed so all was good.

I got a new handheld camera this year. My little Sony that I have had for seven years was failing me and the delay was killing me. Get prepared to see some really bad pictures over the next couple of weeks until I can take the time to read the manual. It still doesn't live up to my MacDaddy camera, but about 5 lbs lighter so there has to be a trade off, right? Unfortunately there is still a little bit of a delay. I found that out on the very first picture I took when the Big Guy decided to run towards me with a present.

Here it is. The very first photo taken with my new camera:

Canon Powershot

As with most little cameras, it has an evil flash.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Acts of Service and a New Wall

During our holiday break we moved a table out of our family room and put up a gallery of pictures on our wall. As most projects in our house, it took a more time and effort than it should have. There was a big debacle on my frames and as you will see there are some obvious spaces. I may leave it as it is or eventually find different ones (where the white mats are). There was an original plan that changed and then they didn't offer frames like the ones with the green mats anymore. Oh, never mind. Here it is.
(do you think we like our kids?)

The best part about it is that when my Hubby patched up some holes from a previous huge picture, he went around the whole house and touched up the walls and painted them. I am so happy about this! You just don't know how beat up the walls were getting with two wild boys. I think we can get away with not paining our interior now for a lot longer without me losing my mind.

See Hubby, it takes very little to make me happy. Just a day of your time and lots of manual labor.

We had to buy new paint at the end and had ours matched. It didn't quite match all the way or at least you can tell where he touched up our Master Bath. He keeps trying to tell me that it makes it look like a special decorative paint job, but I'm not buying it. I'm still happy, though.

My job was to keep the kids off the walls while they dried. I could have done a better job. Below is Baby Girl's face at me when I was telling her not to touch the wall. She probably cried. She gets a big lip when you tell her no.
Hubby: "She can't be on this wall."
Me: "I know. I have to take this picture first."

Free Doll House

Doll House Giveaway - enter the contest at this blog: Baubles and Bits. I didn't want to take her pictures so you will have to visit to see how cute it is (and just how crafty some people are).

Baby Girl got a Fisher Price Doll House from Santa. It is a little more generic, but still cute. The boys especially like to play with it so they can flush the toilet. That is so funny since they never seem to want to flush it any other time in their lives. (I can turn all blogging into a Potty-Post).


Sunday, December 28, 2008

Mayberry Parade

pre-Christmas activities

Some pictures can tell a thousand words. This one does not.
That is what they were waiting for. It is the Christmas parade in our town. It is the same every year except they added a small HS band this year. Santa trails behind at the end in a little carriage and usually goes so fast I don't get a picture. They circle our main round-about twice and then he throws dust on the tree to light it. It's no Macy's Day Parade and is humorous to me. We know a lot of the people there so I guess it is a good get together. The Little Guy sang with his school beforehand. There was no fuzz picking of sweaters there because they were crammed too close together. He could not compete with the very dramatic-hand-waving girl in front of him and eventually just stepped off the riser behind her so we couldn't even see him. I don't think our boys are going to end up being famous musical performers (you never know...).

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Alternately titled: The family most worthy of hair makeovers.

I love these little children no matter how bad their hair looks. Merry Christmas to all of you.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


One of my little angels.

This was before his school Christmas performance. It is in his classroom and now that I can see his teacher's humongous computer monitor in the background, I am feeling bad that I didn't give more to their annual fund. That woman needs a laptop!

Cute little costumes and lots of them. Guess which Mom did not help with them? That would be me. They start talking about cutting fabric and anything close to sewing and I break out in a cold sweat. I contribute by being the Prayer Mom. I pray lots and lots for dead cats and fish, run-away animals and anything else that troubles a 7 year old's little mind. It can be difficult to pray about the same things over and over in a meaningful way. It has been a different walk I have been able to take with God praying with these children so often. It will probably end up benefiting me more than them.

Christmas has touched me in a new way again this year. I came across an old friend on Facebook that is an Atheist and seems to openly hate Christianity. My world seems to be mostly church friends and others a lot like me. I don't encounter people like this too often that hate what I stand for so much that you can feel it. There was nothing I could say to change his mind at this point in time so I hope that I was able to show kindness and love so that a seed could be planted and someday he will feel differently. I am so thankful for what I know and how God is the one in control of my life. I am so thankful that he would come down in the form of a baby to save me. I can see the contrast in my life and my friends by not the lack of messiness but by the hope and love I feel and can accept. As I typed this he just sent me a "holiday wish" message hoping I get everything I want... I will reply "Merry Christmas!" and hope that I don't make him mad again tonight. Say a little prayer for him...

I just meant to write a little post and show you how big the computer monitor was. Sorry for too much sap that might have come your way. After the last paragraph we went to our Christmas Eve Family service at church. My Big Guy said it best when he said "it wasn't my favorite, but it was okay." I'm so glad he can occasionally have tact (unlike later when he opened a gift from me and said "that isn't too exciting").

I am feeling exhausted and have some hours of work ahead of me baking and preparing for tomorrow. I am a bit too cranky I guess because my husband asked if I would be snapping at him all evening. I told him I hoped not but he shouldn't ask so many silly questions.

It is now time for some chocolate almond ice cream and to find the channel with the marathon of A Christmas Story. It just isn't Christmas Eve without the kid's tongue stuck to the pole.

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2008


Happy Birthday today to our Grammy!

Found My Purple Card

Here is The Big Guy's church performance before things fell apart. He is saying his line about the wise men and did really well. He didn't even breathe hard in the microphone (like I'm sure he wanted to do). His little friend with the fuzzy sweater is at the top next to his shoulder. The little boy below that with his arm in the air was the one kicking and took his shirt half way off. He might be taking it off in this picture? The twins that asked to be put out on the road like trash are in the far left corner. Now, I just have to get to that video...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Merry Fuzzy and Bright

I can't find one of my camera cards. The little purple one (that is how old it is - I don't think they make purple ones any more). I don't know how to get the video off my camera either. If I could I would surely post the Big Guy's Christmas program at church. He had another one at his school that was extremely impressive, moving, the works. His church choir sang for about 30 minutes and all of them had a line or two. It was fine except they should have ended it about a song or two before they did. I'm certainly not one to judge, but why are they putting all of those little 6 and 7 year old boys together on stage? Isn't that just asking for trouble? The Big Guy was next to his very best friend who just happened to be wearing a lovely red Christmas sweater. I told his Mama he was never to wear a Christmas sweater ever again. During the last song he pulled off a big fuzz ball from that sweater and blew it into the air. It was just too funny for the Big Guy to contain himself. He had to pick one off and blow it too. The higher the fuzz ball floated, the harder they laughed. This continued and eventually the little fuzzies landed on the boys in front of them. Again, just too funny for them to contain themselves and pretty soon they all were blowing fuzzies to the boys on the bottom row. It was chaos. I think I might have smiled a little bit and I will admit that if it had not been my child, I would have laughed hard. In the moment it was pretty stressful not knowing where their antics might lead. I contemplated walking across the big room in front of all the video cameras to pull them off stage. I thought that might have made things even worse so I didn't. When it was over I turned to see other Mother's faces and a few of them looked like they were ready to kill someone. Luckily, I had planned a quick escape strategy with my husband earlier when all of those kids were having dinner and eating cookies as big as their heads. We got out of there quick. When I walked in the door my good friend (the mother of the sweater boy) was calling to see if there was anything in that parenting book we are studying in Sunday School that covers this sort of thing. I flipped through and told her it says we should pray. I realized that during these performances, everyone concentrates on their own kids and either do not notice how bad the other ones are acting or it doesn't bother them as much. After some time, perspective and wine, several of us reviewed the video at one of our Christmas parties. Oh, yes, your kid was kicking the one next to him. Gosh, I never even noticed him on the front row completely taking his shirt off...

My Big Guy was unfazed by all of these events. He had already been grounded until the next week for previous events so this was just one more thing to him. When my friend called that night her son had cried all the way home and was in his room packing his bags to leave home. One of the little twins we carpool with declared on the ride home that night that they should just be put out on the side of the road like trash (the more dramatic of the two boys as you can tell). Their usually high-strung music teacher didn't seem to notice or care about everything that happened. Good for her if she has some new medication or something.

I will post a clip of that video here one day even if it is next June. If someone wins $10K on AFV and I don't get a cut of it I will be MAD. *

* not the Christmas Spirit


Three hundred and first post.


Friday, December 19, 2008

My fifth award ever

Thank you Laura for giving me the Butterfly award. You can check out her Blog, Four Little Monkeys and wonder how she does it all. I wish she lived next door to me. Even though I would feel bad about myself for being such a slacker, she would always say the right funny thing to make it better. She has great ideas AND has been down the stairs in a sleeping bag courtesy of her big brothers (If I am remembering that correctly). I've got my eye on Baby Girl because of that. My boys run with her and fall down on top of her now. I know they would love to roll her down the stairs given the chance.

I haven't won very many things in my life and this has made me try to remember my accomplishments. First there was the Tug of War contest at the Jr. Olympics when I was 10. It is the only trophy I have ever received for anything. I didn't grow up like my kids where you get a trophy for being on the team. I don't know if I really earned the 2nd place Tug of War trophy and I am glad that hefty girl was on the end. Next, there was the New Edition album I won in 8th grade when I was the 9th caller to the Radio Station. Cool. That is the sort of thing I did when I was 13 and it obviously paid off for me one day. I can also remember calling in to get on to the DJ for cutting off the end of my favorite WHAM! song (I digress). And thirdly, there is the Big yellow M&M I can't seem to get out of my house. I don't know if technically I am that winner because The Little Guy won him, but I signed him up. You be the judge. Anyway, here he is:And lastly, this past summer I won the slim-down team challenge. It was the best kind of award - cash.

Now, on to the rules to this chain-award and my honorees:

1. Link to the person who gave you the award.
2. Post the graphic.
3. Pass the award on up to ten other bloggers whose blogs you consider cool.

Apparently, Laura and I read a lot of the same blogs. Hmmm. Here are some she didn't list:

Bonnie's House of Fun: I'm so glad I get to list her especially since she recently informed me that her blog is NOT private like I thought. I was hiding her away because I didn't know she was taking visitors. I love the way Bonnie writes - it is so 'her'. Oh, and I guess you can't mention Bonnie without saying she has Quads (that's right - four at the same time) and another new baby born this year. I actually know her from college when she wasn't a Mommy of five.

Mara: She is private so you will just have to imagine how marvelously wonderful her blog is. I can still award her, though!

flssgirl at Life As We know It: I like her topics and the radominity of it all. I totally made up that word. How do you like it? She has good dental tips (hence her name).

Big Nanny
: That girl is just funny. She has a daughter that started college so if you are crying about your kid starting Kindergarten or graduating from preschool, she will not have sympathy for you. Nor should she.

Enjoy your butterflies!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

High of 72 today

I'm burning up. I keep trying to wear my new Lands End down vest that I bought for $19 when I was supposed to be buying Christmas gifts for other people. I had just gotten around to removing most of our summer clothes from closets last week and now this. I wanted to turn on the A/C last night. I think just one more day of this and then it will be back to cold weather. I will admit that I love not having to get the kids all bundled up to go somewhere. The Christmas sweaters and corduroy just don't work so well.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Eating acorns?

Get ready to be depressed

Well, at least I hope not. I just wanted to somehow say today that it would have been my Dad's 64th birthday if he was still with us. Not meant to be a downer, but just wanted to put some pictures of him here today.

This was "Pokka Mike" (The Big Guy couldn't say Poppa) and The Little Guy right after he was born. He was a very fussy baby and my dad would talk to him in his very deep low voice to try and make him hush. I still have this shirt he is wearing hanging up in my laundry room right now. It isn't a statement or anything overly sentimental. It is just laziness that I have never moved it in 3 years. I always think I want to do that thing where I take a picture of the Little Guy in that shirt every year until he is big. Again, lazy (and too busy).

You know you want this couch. don't lie.

We had a Calico cat that would lie on this couch and you couldn't see her.

Yellow pants and a pink watch. I would never think of doing that in my life now. It is what we liked to call "Groovy" way back then.

My Dad used to call me on his birthday and say "I didn't want you to miss talking to me on my birthday" so I never had the chance to forget it. :-)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas Dinner 2008

Will hopefully be a lot like Thanksgiving dinner 2008 with Baby Girl flying over the turkey at Grammy's house.

I think we will actually do a ham. We don't have a picture of her flying over a ham yet.

(Sorry, I get hungry late at night and I am thinking ahead.)

Monday, December 15, 2008

I'm no Martha

I'm no Martha. I'm not even an Amy Jo.

However, I LOVE this stuff!

I should say: I love LOOKING at this stuff.

I have 500 Christmas cards from years-gone-by in case I find 4 more hours in the day to complete this project. I really think I could do it if I can find some friends with names that start with the letter I. Maybe I can just put an L on everything. I don't know the rules and I assume I can make them up as I go along.

Button snowmen. Cute.

Can you come up with a good reason for me to give someone a roll of quarters for Christmas? My friends are fortunate enough to not be visiting laundromats. Too bad Chuck E. Cheese coins don't come rolled. (Did I just write that?)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Falling Leaves

All the leaves are now officially off of our Maples and Pear Tree just in case you were keeping count. We are still not finished raking all of the leaves (these pictures were the beginning of our raking days).

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Another Bang Post

Wordless Wednesday: Remembering the hair that once was.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Free Gift Tags

LinkIf you have actually purchased some Christmas gifts and are ready to wrap them, you can download a free Word template from Microsoft. They work with Avery products and you can customize them.

The orange color doesn't really go with my Christmas wrap. You might be a little more hip than me, though.

Also, if you have already reached the wrapping gifts stage, please do not tell me.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Let the hair grow

"Stay away from my bangs, LITTLE GUY!"

Sunday, December 7, 2008

It finally happened

There has been something I have been anticipating and dreading ever since I became a mother. This weekend it finally happened. I thought it would always be my oldest it would happen to. It wasn't.

If you remember this post, you know that I don't keep scissors down low accessible to children. And, now I don't keep Sharpies down low either. I also might add that my kitchen scissors that I so carefully store 8 feet off the floor are so dull they couldn't cut anything anyway.

The drama unfolded when I left all three children with my husband for a couple of hours. I got the phone call before I returned home. It happened. Shoot.

The Little Guy (aka Middle Child) was using school scissors at the kitchen table and suddenly got up and ran to the bathroom. My Husband claims he thought he was just taking care of business. No. He was cutting his hair. His hair had gotten pretty long and I might not have minded it so much except that it was his bangs. He scalped himself and it just can't be repaired.

I came home to find him asleep on the couch. Excuse the picture - it was a dark room and I didn't have a flash. I'll post an awake picture later if I have the heart. It is actually much worse than it appears in this picture.
The tattoo on the face may have distracted you from the hair disaster. That was another surprise for me. There will be no more Christmas pictures for him without a Santa hat on. I went ahead and put together my Christmas Card last night since I probably won't be getting any better pictures than I have.

I tried to fix his hair-do myself with no luck. He may have to get a military haircut soon.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Planets in a Frown (The most boring post of the week)

Did you see the plants last Monday night? My Mom called and emailed me about it four times. My husband made me take a picture of it.

Impressive, huh?

I think that is the moon. I don't know why the other two planets didn't show up.
My commentary:
a) Real life is often disappointing.
b) I'm not really in to astronomy.
c) After 10 years I still take pictures of things my husband tells me to even when I know it won't turn out well (at least it is digital...I can't tell you how mad I was when he wasted a whole roll of film on a hawk eating an animal in our backyard once and don't even get me started on pictures from the Nascar races he has been to).

Friday, December 5, 2008

Not exactly our Christmas Tree

I'm just surprised that the tree in our backyard still has so many leaves in December. We have been raking leaves a lot lately. We may be raking up through March if they don't drop soon.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Lower half of tree is not decorated because the boys still have a box of ornaments to hang. They were so gung-ho to do it - what happened? It is just as well because one-year-olds like to remove everything anyway (as do 5 and 7 year-olds).
See what I mean about the one year old... (5 and 7 year old are faster and sneakier so they don't get caught. However, their guilty faces and broken ornaments give them away.)

We have had a pre-lit tree for 7 or 8 years and finally this year some of the lights bit the dust. Portions of the tree would not light up at all. So, I gave my husband the go ahead to put on big colorful retro lights. It really isn't as tacky as it may seem AND most importantly it stopped him from all that talk about cutting out the existing lights, rewiring and blah blah blah. The lights outside and our waving Santa may possibly be as tacky as it sounds.

In the midst of our tree-light-debacle, my 7 year old announced to the room "Christmas isn't all about the tree, you know." How right he is.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

More Partying

One Birthday Cake is just not enough.

Updated note: I have had more than one friend make a comment about the cakes and wondering if I made them, etc. I used to be a lot more creative and tried to make some elaborate cakes when I had the time and energy (my younger years). This cake was made by a friend. Although lazy in my cake making abilities these days, I hope that I could come up with something better than lifesavers on the side (like M&Ms!). The first cake I did make. I made it from a box mix that had been in my pantry for quite some time and used the only can of frosting I had. It was cream cheese and the Big Guy did not like that at all. I couldn't justify going to the store at 10PM, though. Back to me being lazy: the same candles were used on both cakes. I would like to add that I did make brownies for his class to celebrate his birthday and actually made a special trip to the store because I was out of eggs. Bonus point! Lost that bonus point when I forgot to get chocolate icing like he asked me.

Trimming the Tree

We are still trying...

There is also a new hole in one of our walls.