Archive for 2009

Hi There

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I haven't written for awhile and I'm not even going to apologize or try to explain's just too boring. I think it will be better to just jump back in and share this photo of Ellie.

The week before Christmas I needed to be at work for a couple of days (because my dad is a slave driver) but the kids were out of school so I brought Ellie to the office with me (because he's a nice slave driver).

She was so excited to work! My mom gave her a state farm piggy bank and then we set her to shredding. She shredded steadily for almost two hours earning a whopping two dollars plus the change in my dad's pockets. She also spent some time with the extremely fascinating typewriter composing an insightful story about an annoying boy and his super smart sister.
I think that's all I have time for right now. Christmas pictures and tales will possibly follow.

Happy New Year!

List a mania?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I like lists and I like checking things off my list even more. In the spirit of check, check then, here is a list of some of my current faves.

T.V. (duh):

1. Glee

2. Lie to Me

3. Castle


5. I want my Lost back. And did you see Juliette in those V promos? I liked V when it used to be on because...lizard people right?

Cleaning Products (say what you want good cleaning products are fine):

1. Method everything but especially the laundry detergent and fabric softner.


1. Cilantro lime shrimp from Costco

2. Cook them yourself tortillas also from Costco

3. Veggie straws

4. Asian pears


1. candles

2. clean dog

3. dinner in the crock pot

4. Jonathan snuggles

5. warm afternoons

6. a full tank of gas

A New Katherine Neville Book = Christmas

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I finished The Lost Symbol, by Dan Brown. It didn't grab me the way The Davinci Code did, but I'm not sure if that's because it wasn't as good or just because I've read so much Dan Brown now.

What I did love was the part about the collective power of our minds to actually make things happen. I believe in this. Lots of people do right, or there wouldn't be prayer groups and the law of attraction and such?

So I looked online and there are several "pray for peace" days organized by different groups that invite anyone to join. Cool, yes?

And back to the book, if you like Dan Brown, read Katherine Neville.

OH MY GOSH, I just went to get you the link and she has a new book!!!! I have been waiting like ten years for her to write a new book! Must go to amazon now. Now, now, NOW.

Flying Feet

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I've just realized why the fly lady is called the fly lady. It's because moms have to FLY around the house to get all their chores done and food available and clean clothes occasionally folded.

And that is why I can't wait to get these silly stitches OUT of my foot, because my fly-abilities have been seriously curtailed. I want to fly again.

Plus they itch.

Today is the day (oh I hope I hope); wish me luck!

Tea Cup Giddy

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Have I told you before about how much I love dishes? Oh, a lovely dish makes my heart go pitter patter. I always buy plain white (crate and barrel) plates so that I can accessorize my table with whatever pretty serving dishes I have. But if I had money and cupboard space to spare I'd have dish sets coming out the wazoo I tell you what! The wazoo! spell check recognized "wazoo." that's funny.

So now, for your viewing and my gloating pleasure, I will share photos of the new to me dishes that my Aunt Nancy just gifted me because she moved and doesn't have space for them. Dishes, I do love you. I will marry you. We can be together forever.
Mostly what she gave me are tea things that used to belong to my Grandma and Nana. I have some lovely ones already that you can see here. And a two tier cake stand! Don't hate me.These tea cups may be my new favorites because they are so over the top ladylike fancy. They remind me of Marie Antoinette. And Juicy Couture.I don't actually know what this is specifically for, but it will be adorable with a little jam at the fancy lady friends brunch that I usually have at Christmas.

Honestly, I am taking deep breaths now because the very thought of each lovely tea cup is like a hit of cocaine. I think. I mean that could be wrong because really I get sick from just percocet, but you know what I mean.

Done now, all this gleeful acquisition is exhausting.

Magic Words

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I have some new magic words in my life. They are, deep breath, "I can't afford it."

As much as I have avoided using, or let's face it, acting on those words in the past, I'm surprised how well they've been working for me lately.

Twice recently when I've fessed up I can't afford it as a reason why I couldn't do something the person who was asking has breathed a big sigh of relief and said something along the lines of, "Oh good. I can't either."

So I'm thinking "I can't afford it," can be like my new club. I'm going to trot it out more and see how many friends want to join.

The Dumb Doom Seed!

Friday, October 16, 2009

The DOOM Seed has germinated!

Spent the morning trying to restore my iphone and banging my hairbrush on the wall (it helped me but made Riley nip Marc).

It seems better now.

He's Hungry!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Lately Jonathan has taken to lurking in the kitchen, sniffing everything I'm making, and asking, make that begging for bites. He is always hungry and super interested in food.

Last week we ate at Chipotle and he had the tres tacos meal. It is not small, I'm telling you that right now. It is a solid meal. I ordered a chicken burrito and ate half and wrapped the other half up to save for Marc (poor man is at the office night and day right now).

So anyway, before we are even out of the restaurant Jonathan is eyeing my burrito like a starving child from a third world country. He asks politely if he can have it. I politely say no.

On the way home he asks for it again and I tell him I'm saving for his dad, it's his Dad's dinner for pete's sake. This goes on for the whole night. It was not pretty, I tell you what.

I mention this to illustrate the boy's love for food. He will try anything, wants to help cook, and loves all kinds of food. So when he asked me to help him start his own blog I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that he wanted to call it "Big Burger," and write about food.

Go leave him a comment, he needs to be encouraged to write!

The Time Traveler's Wife

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Has anyone seen The Time Traveler's Wife? I am dying to hear from someone what they thought of it. I personally can't go see it because it is one of my most beloved books and I can't stand the thought of it being made dumb and sappy like Under the Tuscan Sun.

I don't usually review books, and I don't usually recommend this one to friends because it has some seriously bad language.

The story of Claire and Henry though speaks straight to my heart. To me it's a metaphor for how love can be desperately hard and how what you love about a person can be intrinsically wrapped up in their weaknesses. It reminds me that love isn't bound by time, that it's eternal, and that it is worth the waiting and worrying and helplessness you can sometimes feel.

And that my friends is why I don't like to review books. Way too much sappy information. Sorry.

Let me make it up to you by RECOMMENDING two of my other all time favorite love stories. These are re-readers for sure.

The Samurai's Garden
Rose's Garden

And a majorly favorite love movie.

What Dreams May Come.

Envy Motivated Fall Decorating

Friday, October 2, 2009

Hi friend.
I'm linking up at Soft Place to Land for DIY Tuesday

It seems like everyone in blog land is showing off what they've done to decorate for Fall. And you know what I kept thinking? I kept thinking, "Who decorates for Fall? Christmas and Easter people. That's all I can handle."

But after awhile I, of course, got jealous and decided to see what I could do. I dragged out the Halloween crate which mostly has plastic pumpkin trick-or-treat buckets and crossed my fingers.

A little shopping the house plus a very modest trip to Pier One for some clearance fall foliage and away we go! Oh! And some dollar store crows. Love those.

This is my favorite, uh, is it stretching to call it a tablescape, because I had the clever idea to use books with spooky titles and, you know, float plastic skulls in the apothecary. Fine decorating yes indeedy! Plus the Jesus picture. I know.Here's some stuff I did in the living room, mostly moving things around and trying to accentuate the fall-ish items I already have.

I saw pillows covered in sweater fabric in Pottery Barn so I asked the girls if they had any sweaters they didn't want anymore and voila! Yes, I am so clever. Riley had eaten parts of these pillows during one of his Doggie Mr. Hyde moments so it was nice to recover them anyway.
Have you seen all you want to see? There's a little more Halloween stuff in the entryway.Oh, and Muffy at the top of the stairs of course. I can't explain why I need a Muffy dressed for every's a sickness...but I like it.

Entryway Reveal

I tried every which way to get a good picture of our narrow entry way and here, finally, are the three best shots.

I don't usually hang family photos; I like them in albums, but I think that was a mistake because I love looking at these every time (all the time) I trot up and down the stairs with a basket of laundry.

I told Marc that I like it because it makes me feel like I am in the home part of the house as soon as I come in the door. That's a problem with split levels, it feels like that little landing and staircase may as well be the stairwell in an apartment building or something. But this goes a long way towards fixing it. I highly recommend it if you have a split level that you battle with like I do.

So I explained that all to Marc and he gave me the "whatever" look and said he's glad I'm happy. He'd better be too. Dinner is much more likely when I'm happy. And other things too.

Fishy Fish

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"Fish smells like fish." That's Jonathan's reason for why he doesn't want to eat my fabulous baked salmon.

But last night I made This baked fish with shrimp and it went over really well. At first he said he was going to just have the noodles and green beans, but after smelling the (delicious) sauce for awhile he asked for a bite and then said, "Oh! I've gotta have some of that."

Seriously, I feel like a super momma when three out of four kids eat their fish and green beans and like it. Ellie doesn't count. She is my "get out of parenting responsibilities free" child because she is so difficult that I am going strait to Heaven just because she is still alive. DON'T judge me. Or at least be gentle.
* just so you know, although the fish looks creamy, I made it with fat free milk, a serving is only 310 calories. And it was still good, it tasted like cheating.

Monday, Monday

Monday, September 28, 2009

Hey! I am blogging from work. On my lunch break of course. There is really nothing to write about though, lunch by myself in the empty office is blah, blah, blah boring.

We had a good weekend though watching lots of Katie playing soccer at her tournament in San Ramon.

And eating frozen yogurt. Eating fro-yo may be the current Fosse family favorite activity. We play 20 questions while we eat. I know, we're a fascinating family.

My Good Shepherd

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Here is what's on my mind. You know how in John it talks about sheep and the shepherd and whatnot?

I've thought about that before and mostly concentrated on what it means to be a good sheep...hearing the Shepherds voice, following him, etc.

But yesterday when I was reading it again I had a lovely safe feeling come over me when I realized that the sheep do not fight the wolf. The Shepherd fights the wolf.

Exhale. It will all be okay. I certainly do not have to do everything.

Fall Decorating

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Marc ended up working on Saturday so we didn't paint the family room. Sigh. So I decided to entertain myself by fancy-ing up the entryway.
I saw this picture on this website (a new love) and thought family pictures going up the stair well would be a pretty idea. I found frames on sale at Target and got to work scanning pictures.

Due to my technical difficulty (missing brain parts) it took me a really long time to scan and print. Marc finally had to save me. But the pictures look GREAT!

As soon as I hang them I'll share pictures. I will hang them as soon as I decide if I want to keep them with pictures I have already so laboriously scanned and printed or if I want to scan and print a whole NEW set of old Halloween photos to display next month.

Isn't that a cute idea! A cute, stupid, will drive me crazy if I do it and will drive me crazy if I don't, idea? This is one of my favorites.

Then, all I will need is an area rug and some fall like table stuff to finish up the teeny space. I'm not sure if the fall stuff should be attractive fall foliage, or plastic eyeballs floating in an apothacary. What do you think?

All By Myseeeeelf

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Why, hello me!

Okay, someone else set up my blog follower page on facebook, but it linked to my old wordpress blog. I just noticed it today (so not fb savvy) so I tried to put it on this blog, where I actually post and I lost all eight followers.

It made me laugh to see this box with me as my only follower, because isn't blogging such a narcissistic activity anyway? But I love it.

Dinner for Six

Monday, September 14, 2009

I've started working for my dad fifteen hours a week. Fifteen teensy little hours. I'm 100% positive that I normally waste fifteen hours each week walking in and out of the laundry room and wondering what I'm doing.

So I can't figure out why becoming a "working mom" is kicking me so hard.

Actually, I can. It's because school and after school sports started up at pretty much the same time as my job. So even though I normally love this time of year, I'm kind of doing the headless chicken thing right now.

And I certainly am not making any dinners.

But tomorrow that changes! I am armed with a grocery list and menu plan for three low fat crock pot meals to make this week. Yes I know there are seven dinners in a week. I'm trying not to bite off more than I can chew (chew! ha!). If they work out, and by "work out" I mean at least four out of the six people who live here like them, then I will share.

If you know of any easy low fat/low calorie family type meals will you share? Please?

Table Manners for the Lovely Children

Saturday, September 12, 2009

I have another brief yet valuable piece of advice for all those darling little children out there.

Whatever "eating plan" your mother is on, you must refrain from asking her that most heinous of all questions, "Are you allowed to eat that?"

Because dear children, your mother is an all grown up adult (with the stretch marks to prove it) and so she alone is in charge of what goes into her mouth. Thus it follows that whatever she is eating, she is indeed allowed to eat.

Now go forth and NEVER ask that question again. It is not helpful.

Teenager 101

Friday, September 11, 2009

I will now gift you with an educational quiz on how to ask your parents for things.

1. You want new flip flops. You...

A. flop in the car after school and announce, "you have to get me new flip flops today."

B. explain to your mother that your flip flops broke at school today and say, "do you think I can get some new ones soon?"

Just sayin'


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

On Friday Marc and I went for a run and had a new high of going 1 and 3/4 miles without a break. This week we should hit two miles. We are slow, and I think look really silly, but I am proud of us. My personal running trick is to look up at the mountains and sing "How Firm a Foundation" in my head, it keeps me going.

We also monitor the tall fast couple who run on the track at the same time we do each morning with a solid goal of increasing the time it takes them to lap us each day. Don't judge.

Speaking of judging, I have always thought that you couldn't claim to be a runner unless you actually run. Like when people all bright and breezily claim things like, "I ran five hundred miles this morning,"...I thought that meant they ran five hundred miles. Without stopping.

But apparently in run language you can say you ran, even if you spent some of that time walking. It's okay apparently. I've always been very careful to qualify my running statements by saying things like, "I ran this morning but I was being passed by snails," just because I don't want anyone to think I'm claiming to be an actual runner. They might see me sometime and laugh. But what you can count on is that if I say I ran, I did not walk. So. That's how I feel about it.

Easy Peasy Birthday Banner

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Friday with Marc out of town + four diet cokes + upcoming birthday party = uncontrollable need to make a birthday banner at nine o'clock at night!

And the bonus is I have something for DIY Thursday!


So instead of doing any chore type items which I hate anyway, I decided I could make a Mary Engelbreit-ish birthday banner out of leftover fabric scraps and, I'll be honest, fabric I'd purchased for projects that I never got to.It was a great idea! Totally fun, fast, and rewarding. I imagined that I invented this from my own pretty little head, but when I googled "fabric birthday banner" It turns out I had not. There are LOTS of ideas out there.

My idea was to sew a little, use wonder under a lot, and hot glue everything else. Worked like a charm. Check it out.

I stole some wonder under from Dayna (thanks!) and just free hand drew the letters on the paper part. Remember to reverse them.I layered the batting between the front and back pieces, pinned them together, cut an edge with pinking shears, and sewed around the edge. Nothing is particularly straight or perfect but I was more interested in fast than perfect for this project.

The last step was to lay all the pieces out on my kitchen table and glue them to this piece of ric rac (is that what it's called?) and to glue on bits of pom pom trim and a few buttons. TA-DA! I am thoroughly impressed.

What a Difference a Year Makes!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Yesterday was the first day of school. At some point, after dropping everyone off, I let out this long sigh of relief and let my mind drift back to last year and how truly awful it was.

I remembered how guilty I felt about our move and how scared I was that my tiny shiny children would suffer for even a minute. The thought of them feeling scared and lonely was unbearable.

But now here we are. And everyone w
ent off to their classes excited, nervous, and happy. Just like it should be! Katie is a freshman in high school! How did that happen?
Maddie is a JUNIOR! Stop the clock.I can still pretend Jonathan and Ellie are little so I'm going with that. Notice not how big they really are.
Perhaps the sweetest moment of yesterday came in two parts. As I was driving Maddie to golf (yes, she is playing varsity golf) she started telling me about how at lunch she saw a girl eating by herself so she and a friend went over to talk to her and invite her to eat with them. They found out that she was new and had moved here from Washington. Then Maddie told me how she wished someone had done that for her on her first day last year, and how she thinks that people who haven't ever moved don't even really notice someone who is alone but that because she has been through it, "my heart goes, 'ohhhh,' when I see someone like that. I know now that no one really wants to eat by themselves."

My own heart went "ohhhh" when she told me this. I am so happy that my beautiful girl has found a way to take something good and valuable away from a difficult experience!
I sometimes call Maddie and Ellie my "bookends" because they look so much and act so much alike, so what happened next shouldn't surprise me. As I was tucking Ellie into bed last night I asked if she liked who she was sitting next to in school. She said that she did because she is sitting next to the new girl and she is happy to be her first friend because she knows how it feels to be scared on the first day at a new school.

I have a very full, very happy mommy heart right now.

Three Books, From Me to You

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I don't really do reviews, it takes too much serious thought to figure out what I really like about a book, and then if I do, it ends up being too personal to share anyway.

But I am going to tell you three good books right now. I'm not going to review them; I'm just going to recommend them. Don't be mad, it's just how I am. Lazy.

The first is The Magician's Assistant, by Ann Patchett. Do you already love Ann Patchett? Here is a sentence out of this book, "While Iowa struggled through the bitter knife of winter and New York folded in crime and the South remained backwards and divided, Los Angeles pushed her slender feet into the sand along the Pacific and took in the sun." Boy do I like that sentence.

Okay, next is Malinche, by Laura Esquivel, the author of Like Water for Chocolate. I'm reading Malinche right now and I promise it is fascinating. Malinche was Cortes' native interpreter and lover.

My last recomendation is There, Their, They're: A No-Tears Guide to Grammar From the Word Nerd. This is super handy for answering your quick grammar questions when you're writing your blog and WAY shorter and more user friendly than, say, The AP Stylebook. My sweet mother-in-law has been recovering from a surgery and I learned that all this time I've been talking about her being "nauseous", totally insulting, she's "nauseated!" So helpful.

Paying for it

Friday, August 21, 2009

The problem with spending my day on this DIY project:is that I don't get to this do it myself project. How did the shoemaker get those elves anyway? I mean, I'm nice. I'll make some little clothes or something. They just won't get washed.


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