Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas and so on

Christmas was nice - all were healthy, youngest was Joseph at the Christmas Eve family service, complete with WILD wig, and Oldest read scripture. Middle kid helped husband move scenery (one backdrop) and i wrangled kids and sprinted up the aisle after missing my cue to read a prayer. In my defense, I was helping a wise man.
Last night we had the wonderful opportunity to see old friends for a night as they were driving to VA beach. They'll drive back through here in a week - YEA!
We have a new mattress - isn't that thrilling? It's a Tempurpedic...still getting used to it, but so far so good.

We even got snow - snowed about 3 inches, lasted a day, and now has melted quite a bit. Probably about half of it melted - and it was the best kind of snow, where it didn't stick on the street.

We went up and saw my family pre Christmas. My mom is doing okay, getting weaker physically but is still "there" inside. Its good to see her, but still hard in some ways. I don't know what I'd do without my sisters - they really do the lion's share of the work. ALS is a wicked disease, and I wish I could change it. But I can't. So we deal with it.

It's been interesting - for the first time in the kid's lives, I've had to go to work when they were home on vacation. But it's good too, because it makes them connect more with their Dad. I'm hoping tomorrow they can all go do something fun.

Wondering what to do for New Years...Oldest leaves that night for the Sugar Bowl. I'm more nervous about that then when I sent him to Bulgaria on a missions trip!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Dogs, Cats, Goats

So I didn't get dogs, apparently. I got goats. These puppies will try to eat ANYTHING.
Especially fond of carrots, however.
And cardboard.
And my purse.
So here's a funny video...about cats. Because cats are far funnier than dogs :)

And here's a seasonal one. My sister reminded me that this was why our tree was always wired to the wall when I was growing up. Our cats used to knock it down!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Lack of Mandatory Fun is actually quite....perplexing

So, when you are in the Navy, or your spouse is, there is a certain level of "mandatory fun". Those squadron parties, dinners, open houses, children's christmas parties (that you are usually helping to put on, etc) while are all fun, are sometimes a burden on your time, energy and finances.
This year, we have none of that. Zip. Zilch. Nada.
We've had two parties that we *chose* to go to. One was a church one, my sunday school class, which was a hoot and I laughed so hard I couldn't breathe. They are fun, funny, and verrry silly.
The next was a neighbor's open house. That was today and it was just so low key and fun.
And holy cow, the Matthew McConaughey commercial for dolce and gabanna just came on. Whew.
Okay, distraction over.
Anyway, the point is that this year, it is completely different. No mandatory things to go to. It's nice in a way, but ODD as well. I wonder if that is part of the reason I can't quite grasp the nearness of Christmas.
The fact that this has been a year of change might be another.
Advent is so important, that preparation time. I just feel like this year I could use 6 weeks of Advent, not 4!
Tomorrow, barring some odd snowstorm (no, not expected, just wishful thinking on behalf of my kids) I am finishing Christmas shopping and stuff like that. And doing the cards if I can FIND them...

Thursday, December 09, 2010


For no reason at all, I am in a mood so foul the only cure is to go to bed. So the house will remain in an unpicked up state, I will let the dogs out one last time, and I will take my tired body and go to bed.
And so help me, if the two oldest children are still up when I go to bed....because I love my kids. But I don't want to see you awake past 930. And certainly not past 10.
Heh. I don't even want to see myself past 10 most nights.

The good thing, however, is that moods pass and that tomorrow will be a better day.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010


So, somewhere else, there is a meme that involves questions. I will post the question asked of me, and then you answer it for yourself as well.
Then, I will ask YOU a question in reply, and you answer it on your space - your blog, your journal, or right here if you don't have a "space".
And as people answer YOUR question, you think of something you would like to ask them, and so it continues.

The question asked of me was...
What is your dream occupation once your sons are out of the house? A well-founded dream and a completely fantastic dream, if you like. :)

My dream job? Being in charge of Children's Ministry at a mid size church, with unlimited and committed volunteer base, a reasonable budget, totally supportive congregation and lots of freedom program wise. Okay, you peeps with church backgrounds can stop laughing now. 
Realistically, I would love to go into Children's Ministry. I enjoy that field immensely and am reasonably good at   it :) I also think it would be easier to do with no children at home of my own! 
However, I am also finding my office work very enjoyable. It's low stress although busy, and I get to do a variety of things for a good wage. I can see me doing this job for many years. 
So if I could do both, that would be ideal! 

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

more puppies

Oh, these? these are the flowers I USED to have before the dogs dug them up. And ate them. 

Harvey is facing the Camera, I think. Jack is turned away. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

So, Happy Thanksgiving.
Life just seems to be getting busier. My job is fantastic. Busy, and challenging, but not aggravating. And the people I work with are fabulous. Of course, we are now down one person, and so that means more hours and responsibility for me. Today I got to learn how to work with medicaid - determine eligibility and also submit claims. Kinda fun, and luckily pretty idiot proof.
What else? Lots of church stuff, which I enjoy. I don't know if it will ever amount to a 'paid' job, and I am not sure if I want it to. But I like working with the kids.
This Sunday I am: doing the Children's moment at 845 and 1100. Teaching sunday school at 1000. lighting the advent candle at 1100. And probably riding the float in the parade that night.
Yes, I am goofy. Totally and completely.
Plus the 5th I"m helping with crafts. And the Cmas eve family service? Youngest child is Joseph, older child is reading - and i'm helping shepherd children.
Still, we have our struggles. Oldest hasn't found his 'niche' yet. No close friends yet and that's hard for him. Middle one has kids on the street, and so does youngest. Oldest? nope.
Sigh. Hopefully he'll find some direction soon.
The puppies continue to grow and change, and are lots of fun but are quite a bit of work. Like all young mammals!

Friday, November 19, 2010

For your time wasting pleasure....

Go, make a snowflake. It's strangely relaxing and addicting.

Today i took the dogs to the vet - they're fine, except Harvey has a scrape on one paw. Of course.
Then I went and got my hair cut - it's my splurge. I go to an Aveda salon, because I love the pampering. Plus the stylist I go to is friendly and cuts my hair really well. Plus she did my eyebrows today. MUCH better!

Then some shopping for the pets - long leads to work on recall so they can have a bit more freedom.
And bought my nephew's bday gift, plus a few books for Christmas.

Yesterday I had to go to the docs - UTI- and they gave me antibiotics. It wasn't too bad, but I get a huge dose of fatigue with these, and it has hit me today, so I'm taking it a bit easy.

What happened in pre antibiotic days, I wonder? Because without meds, I would be curled up on the floor, or throwing myself off of a roof just to stop the pain.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Gearing up

It's going to be one of those busy weeks, and I hope that things go fairly smoothly.
I do have a source of wonderment though. When did it become standard practice to have kids wear their PJ's to school???? I really hate PJ day. Think it is stupid.
I have a meeting here tomorrow night, and then I have a district meeting Thursday, both for church. I'm happy about both meetings, but it does make for a busy week.
And cub scouts? Haivng a pack meeting, Thursday night. But having a Thanksgiving type pot luck. Why??? Why go through all that trouble one week before? Feeling very scrooge like about the whole thing.
Time just seems to be flying.
And I wish I was going to VA for Thanksgiving. My Aunt and Uncle are coming, but we decided a long time ago, on the advice of my sisters, that it wasn't going to work to come on Thanksgiving . Now I'm regretting that but can't rearrange things now. We'll have to go after Christmas, and before Sugar Bowl. Or something.
Have a great week!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Love Thursday

So, one of the blogs I read faithfully,, by the fabulous Mir, does a Love Thursday post every week. In it, she finds something to reflect the love that surrounds us in this life.
Since I've been doing a fair bit of 'poor,poor pitiful me" thinking lately, I decided I needed to steal, er, borrow that idea.

It is Veterans Day. And while I am thankful for all those who served, who died serving, who lived to come home, and those who are still out there, I have a group of people who I think about when I read the In Flanders Field poem that I do every Veterans day.
It is the ladies of Arlington National Cemetery. They make sure that every veteran buried there has someone at their funeral, to stand and honor their service. Here's a link:
And they don't do it out of guilt, or money, or for publicity. They do it out of love, a love for those they have never met, and for the love of their country.
My father is buried at Arlington. The support and dignity that accompanied his funeral was amazing to me, even in the midst of our grief. Go to Arlington if you get a chance. It is overwhelming, and sad, but there is a sense, to me, of love, of tenderness, of care, for those who gave their life simply because they were doing what they believed was their duty. Some willingly went to war, some were sent. Some died on that field, some died inside on that field, and some came home to live a life full and happy and died years later. But war changes everyone who touches it, and who is touched by it. The only cure for war, and the only cure for heartache caused by war? Love.
So love those around you, love them with every ounce of your being, so that the love may spread, and through love, we may beat our swords into plowshares.
Happy Love Thursday.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Answering machines

Because we are apparently in the dark ages, we still have a "land line". The description of which makes me  shake my head - sounds like the other option is what? An air line? water line?
One thing I am learning to use, though, is my answering machine to screen calls. Now for 3.5 years we did not have caller ID available on our home phone. Now we have it again, and even though I am on the do not call list, we still seem to get our fair share of nonsense calls. Especially during the day, if it doesn't say G county schools or the name of my church, I'm pretty sure its a nonsense call.
My cell phone, however, must be one or two digits off of someone else's number. Because I CONTINUALLY get wrong number calls. And texts. Once, someone asked if they should get dreds. I thought, hmm..I don't think this is who you think it is.
Nothing against dreds, but they don't really work on anyone who would be texting me - my DH, my best friends, my sisters...none of them either have the correct texture or length for such things.

On the stomach front, Oldest is the only one so far to actually become physically ill. I had a mild version of it, as did middle kid. But good gravy, I am so drained. Apparently that is one of the hallmarks of this particular virus. It's not even no energy. It's like an energy vacuum.

Took both puppies for a walk today. It's fun till they get tired and start to be uncooperative :) like all small tired mammals, so we turned around and came home then.

Now I am off to the store so I can sneak in a nap before the kids get home. And I'm really wishing my washing machine and dryer both took the same amount of time. Laundry would be so much more efficient.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Guess what season it is!

It is......stomach flu season, apparently.
Oldest had band competition this weekend - 5A state finals. Band finished the highest they ever have before, so awesomeness abounds.
However, he announced this morning that he didn't feel well. And he didn't look well, obviously. And then he told us that 5 kids had puked at the band competition.
So...he made it to school but then DH brought him back as he felt like he was about to puke. So when I got back from bringing middle kid to school, there he was. So far he's puked twice.
But boy, do I have clean bathrooms now.

So now we are watching The Princess Bride.

And I'm wondering how long till the other shoe drops...

Thursday, November 04, 2010



I'm actually enjoying the Fall weather - I love cool days and cold nights, but I could do without the rain. But we need it, so I should just hush up.
One of the funniest things lately is to watch the puppies play in the leaf piles. Endless entertainment.
They are looking more and more 'boxer' ish...
I think I'm ready to write the official letter to my grad school telling them that I will not be continuing the masters program. I hate not finishing things, but it just isn't where I need to be any longer. I think. Arrggh.
No, really. I don't think I want to teach in the public school system again - I like my part time job, and it allows me time to take the kids to appointments, wrangle puppies, and also take time off when needed, to go see my mom, etc.
And if we both worked full time? We would so have a house cleaner.
Now, if my sinuses would please loosen up so I could move without feeling dizzy!

Monday, November 01, 2010

November? Really?

Well, the trick or treat night went well, with tons of kids, and we had a few stragglers last night. I was very generous to the younger kids last night, but if you are older, and can't bother to dress up, you get one piece of candy.
Amazed at the number of people who drove their kids house to house. Now, I live in a subdivision where the houses are not far apart  - we share driveways, and walking from door to door is not hard. AT ALL.
I make the older kids do a trick - if they are stumped I tell them to jump on one foot, say their ABC's etc. One girl said hers backward. She got extra :)
One teen boy was trick or treating for his little sister who was too scared to actually come up the steps, or approach anyone. So he got a package of chocolate for himself, and lollipops for her.
Parents? Don't care if you are dressed up. If they are YOUR children, YOU don't get to trick or treat. Steal their candy like everyone else.
Mostly everyone was well behaved and polite. Mostly. Just wasn't that into it this year. I think I was missing my buds from when we lived overseas and would sit in the driveway with a glass of wine handing out candy!
Today is house cleaning day, as life is about to kick back into gear. I do, however, have my Christmas cards to get them out before Christmas :)

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Making Choices

So today, we have DH going to supervise an NJROTC drill meet.
We have oldest son going to a band competition. Which I had planned on going to.
However, our neighborhood association has decreed that TONIGHT is trick or treat night. BLECH. The competition is far enough away that I couldn't go, watch, and come back. Do I make the younger kids miss Trick or Treat to go watch the oldest one play for 20 minutes? yea, not enough wine in the world to make THAT happen.
So DH was thinking about trying to go from his thing to the oldest's thing, but was grumpy this morning and dithered about it. It's killing me - I want one of us to be there, oldest wants one of us there, and I don't know if that is going to happen.
Why do all things seem to happen on the same weekend? We face a similar situation next weekend, but I think we've got it figured out.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Now I want cake.


The weekend has just FLOWN by. Today was our church's fall festival - fun, low key, and a nice way to spend a few hours.
I did the children's moment today - on when Moses tells the peeps to stop bringing sacrifices to the temple, that they had enough. But we should never think God wants us to stop bringing our love to Him.
Next week is All Saints Day. I have to work on that !!!
Plus, next Saturday is a band competition PLUS the Halloween parade in our development. Blecch. Too many things on one day.
The puppies are getting bigger, and seem to be over their tummy troubles. Sweet, but busy little guys.
This week is middle kid's 13th bday. Have NO idea what I'm going to get him. At least this year we don't have to worry about party issues - just don't know enough peeps.
Bonus find of the month..the preschool at the church had been given a huge amount of yarn that they can't use - it's wool yarn. So I grabbed a few rolls so I can do the squares for this project:
Now I have to actually do it!!!
Alright, off to do some laundry. The never ending cycle, right?
Loincloths. That's the answer.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

In which I borrow an idea...

So this is from a friend's blog, and I thought I'd slide it away over here...
One little compliment can make you feel amazing.

So give me a compliment, anything in the entire world, even that my shoelaces are pretty. Put this in your journal. And once you get some comments, put that entry in a memory or tag and when you are feeling down, just go to that entry and this will remind you how great you are.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

This morning

Cleaned up puppy poop and puppy puke before coffee
Got three kids ready for school...oops, middle one ill. Yesterday it was oldest child.
Trash out
Recycling out
Get kitchen ready for dishwasher guy
Mop floor from yucky puppy footprints
Wash puppy bedding
Plant plants in ground - they were in pumpkin planters but the pumpkins have started to dissolve.
Realize that it wasn't even 9 am yet.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Our new puppies.
Boxer mixes.
Stretched out one is named Harvey, curled up one is named Jack!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Dishwasher appears to be either dying or already dead.
Car needs oil changed, tires filled, and to be cleaned out.
Head is going to implode if the weather doesn't fix itself soon. It needs to rain or maybe there is a front passing by..either way my head is so tight that I think my hair is going to fall off.
And I have to make cheese quesadillas for JP's spanish class domani.
And I have to proctor the PSAT tomorrow.
And ATT? You are starting to piss me off. Stop losing my signal, please.

But, on the good side, I got paid today, I really like my part time job, and the kids only have school 3 days this week.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Cleaning House

I took today while everyone was at school/work and cleaned the house. I changed bed linens, scrubbed bathrooms, mopped floors, vacuumed, the whole nine yards. Did the Italian thing and opened all the windows. Didn't think my neighbors would like me to hang the comforters out of the window, so I kind of just spread them inside. In Sicily all the cleaning women would hang the comforters out of the windows to air them out.
Besides, I was also afraid a bird would poop on them.
I even swept my front porch. And then looked at the posts and around the light and said "Huh. Guess I don't need to BUY any spiderwebs, because every spider in this state is living ON MY PORCH!"
Blech. I don't mind spiders, really. But honestly, these are the messiest, thickest webs I've ever seen.

The problem with cleaning is that it requires sustained motivation. And I'm good for about three hours. Then I'm done. But I took a break and then finished up, so I feel entitled to make breakfast for dinner. Mostly because I have no clue what to make. I'm a wee bit tired of trying to think of dinner ideas. Mostly all I want is...chips and salsa.

Soon, I will have three kids in a car and be driving up to Virginia. While I am glad to be going, I am NOT looking forward to the drive. I am going to avoid 81, however. Just not in the mood for dodging large trucks and stupid drivers.
81 seems to attract both likes flies to....honey.

Oh, youngest is going to be a dust bunny for Halloween. And middle one is going to be something involving locust skeletons. I'm trying not to ask.
Oldest is too old....I'm hoping someone will have a party.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Moving Mysteries

There are a few things I can't find since the move. One, my light up pumpkin for Halloween. DH swears it is in the outside garage. I looked, but didn't see it. I really would like to find it. I know that it is here *somewhere*. Unlike the Nutella (6 large jars) that I cannot find anywhere. I think the movers may have, um, liberated it.
Ok, the TV is on as I write this -some guy paints pictures out of the dirt on the back of his car. I mean, not just minor "wash me" but entire paintings, like The Birth of Venus. Go here if you want to see:

I have started a part time job. It's fun, I like it, but it changes how the house is run and how things get done. DH and I were talking last night -the original plan was for me to work full time. But after 15 years of NOT working outside the home full time, I think it would have been a disaster. DH agreed. Middle kid is finally getting stable - between the meds and therapy, his anxiety is so much better, and we have a 504 for the ADD/Anxiety issues in school. Part of me still longs to have them home and home schooled, but they seem to be doing well. These schools, despite all the gloom and doom of public school reports, are strong academically and really, they are doing the things I would be doing for the most part. We still 'supplement' and all the kids are great readers, so that helps. But I miss them when they are at school.

Now I have to get the younger two to figure out what they are going to be for Halloween.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Okay, so how hard is it to knit socks? I mean in the grand scheme of knitting. REALLY hard, or just Kinda hard, or no, it's not too hard, so just jump in and try it?
I can knit, purl, increase, decrease, all that fun stuff. I'm just looking for something knew and not too complicated to try.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What do you call it?

What do you call it when you are "homesick" for  a place that isn't your home? I was unpacking MORE stuff from Sicily today - wishing I'd bought more of those little Venetian glass animals from that one store in Taromina, remembering different things as I unpacked items to put in the china cabinet - and wishing I was back there. Life was confined in a way back there, but it was also a bit easier in some ways.
I'm glad to be here. I"m happy where we have chosen to live. And when I long for Sicily, am I longing for Sicily, or the Sicily I knew when my friends were there?
All I know is this house is a disaster and I have until Thursday night to ALL the things.
(warning, there is some language that isn't suitable for all peeps, but I LOVE this post)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Making a big dinner

One problem I have is that when I make a big dinner, then I no longer want to *eat* said dinner.
Tonight I cooked stew and biscuits and pie. Chocolate pudding pie. Haven't made it in so long I had to look up how to make a meringue. It had been THAT long.
Furniture is rearranged and looks good. Oooh, it's thundering again. It's been raining off and on all day, and cooler weather approaches....
I love fall. Wonder if I can go apple picking somewhere....

Book Fairs

I spent this morning working at the middle school's bookfair. It's a small bookfair, really, for such a large school. Scholastic run, of course, and lots of books (could we find a new YA topic? Vampires are starting to get on my nerves). But lots of little junky gegaws - erasers, and pencils, and chocolate bar shaped calculators.  Drives me crazy, because the kids will buy the overpriced JUNK and not look at the books!
And middle school kids. Wow. I forgot how *rude* they can be to their teachers. My kiddo has issues, but rudeness is not one of them. Or wouldn't be for long, that's for sure.
So it's rainy, and chilly, and I'm seriously considering Beef Stew for dinner. Or chili, but then I have to make something else for the kids.
We are down to painting the trim in the living room, then I can set it up. *Big happy dance*
We have cable. Only took them four hours. Of course, part of the issue was how the people before us had set things up.
DH's parents come this weekend, so i want the house to look good, so I'm going to bust my little butt all week to get it that way. Hopefully I'll make it!
Plus I have to find out if we have a den meeting tonight. And i need to order our popcorn. He's kind of given up on the door to door thing. It's not his thing, and he wasn't having a lot of success anyway!
Band Competition this weekend. Close by, so we are only going for a bit. Oldest did well at the last one, so maybe he won't be so nervous this time.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Ok, I'm here,now what??

So, I haven't updated here in almost four years. Wowza.
I knew I had this one, but forgot the name!
So today's excitement is cable installation. It has been three months since we had cable - when we moved from Italy, we didn't renew it, and with the money crunch this just wasn't that important.
But now, it's college football time and certain members of my household are a bit anxious. Chomping at the bit, really.
So I am waiting on a certain cable company. But my neighbors next door (who I just met today and who have the most adorable little girl) use uverse from ATT. Hmm....I looked it up and it looks like a good deal. I'd have canx the cable appt but DH is unavailable (ROTC commitment) to consult.....
Meanwhile Oldest has a band competition, which meant practice today in the morning, fly home for lunch, rush back to the school so he can get on the bus. They'll get home LATE tonight.
The poor kid doesn't have his ipod either, as it got washed earlier this month. Makes Christmas shopping for him a bit easier.
So, I'm working on the house today - inlaws come next weekend, which is *wonderful* but does give us a definite deadline on some painting and putting books away. I don't have to work next week which is a bit easier, but there are, of course, school things (book fairs, picture days) and my usual "intern" days at the church.
Bored yet?