Archive for April 2009

Tomato and Egg Dreams

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Yesterday we spent the day on chicken coop repairs and putting in the garden. I know, right? It's not how I picture me either. But the kids all helped and at the end of the day it felt great!
Our coop is obviously not one of the cute ones like in the "Hannah Montana Movie;" it is maybe 40 years old and made to hold two dozen chickens. Marc wrapped it in tons of new chicken wire, plus patched lots of holes and bricked up the bottom.

I love it that Marc can fix anything. I'm nervous about the chickens being safe from weasels (weasels!) or whatever racoonish animals are out there, but I think they should be secure, he worked very hard. I just really really want my chickens to be okay.
Tonight is their first night sleeping outside. Be safe little chicks!

While Marc and Jonathan were on coop duty, Ellie, Katie, and I were working on the garden. We cleared tons of weeds, hoed, spread chicken manure (that we bought for pete's sake and I can't give you a good reason why) and squished grubs. Very satisfying, I tell you what!

After running around to Jonathan's lacrosse game and Maddie's swim meet, we finally got the last plants in around 8pm. I chose seven tomato plants, summer squash, peppers, zucchini, eight ball squash (no idea, but they sound fun), crew neck squash and some herbs.
Last night I dreamed that it rained and rained and washed away all my plantletts, but this morning they were fine. I hope they sleep well tonight too, and dream of growing big, Big, BIG. With enough tomatoes for all my toast and some to give away.

Ask and Ye Shall Recieve

Friday, April 24, 2009

Hmmm...what else should I ask for? Thanks Mom!

Teaching Moments

So we try to teach our children not to "take the Lord's name in vain." We explain that it's because we love Jesus and our Heavenly Father and we want to show our love for them by not using their names in casual or disrespectful ways.

It's pretty easy for me because I'm at home most of the time, but it can be hard for my tiny shinys since they hear "oh. my. God." all the time at school and on television. I really never hear the big kids say it anymore, but Ellie must be hanging out with someone who really likes the phrase because she has been saying it. A lot.

It may seem weird, but it kind of hurts my ears. So I explained again to her why we don't say it and my little sweetheart cried because she felt so bad. I told her that I wasn't mad and that we should try to think of something else she can say when she starts to say, "oh my..."

Here is what she came up with, "oh my cheesy noodle pants!"

I think we can really make this popular people. Let's all say it! Go on, it will make you smile.

Cleaning Day

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Marc and I had a fantabulous time in Los Vegas and I have a bazillion pictures I want to show you PLUS give my reviews of the shows, food, and hotels we perused...but instead of being a good little blogger I spent the day cleaning.

I didn't start out planning to clean all day, but it was one of those things. One of those "oh, that cabinet needs to be wiped down," things that starts in the kitchen and ends with me wiping the baseboard behind the couch with an old sock. It's a good thing too, my ability to ignore dust is pretty honed and it was definitely time to tackle the dirt.

So Vegas tomorrow. It's gonna make you want to go.

Oooh, before I go I wanted to share two sweet things about my good buddy, Jonathan.

Isn't he so handsome?! I can say that can't I? It's not rude is it? I just think he is so cute!

Anyway, first thing, last night Jonathan was jonny-on-the-spot with making sure our family had our one minute of lights out for Earth Day. After running around the house making sure everything (including computers) was turned off, he hit the last light at 8:30pm and began timing us. I did not tell him that it was supposed to be an hour of lights out, one minute was enough for us!

The other sweet thing he did was this morning. After I had already packed her lunch, Ellie announced she wanted to buy today because it was "pancake day." So I said no, because I had already made her lunch. Then she cried because she hates it when she can't have her way (oh yes, she does).

Well while I was in the kitchen and Ellie was writhing on the couch, I noticed Jonathan out of the corner of my eye sliding up to Ellie and sneaking her a little lunch bag with some of his own money for her to buy pancakes. She threw her arms around him and cried, "you're the best brother ever!"

Don't you wish you could have a brother like that?

Field Trip

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Yesterday I chaperoned Ellie's field trip to the California Academy of Sciences

It was pretty spectacular! There is a four story rain forest inside a bio dome that is full of fish, butterflies, frogs, lizards, birds, and beautiful plants. The Steinhart Aquarium is also housed there. When Ellie's teacher told me I was only in charge of Ellie and one other little girl I felt a tiny bit bad that she felt that was all I could handle, but when we got inside the Academy and I saw how crowded it was I appreciated her wisdom. Two girls, two hands to hold, perfect!

This place is so gorgeous and interesting. After school Ellie and I decided we want to be part of an exhibit!

Easter Sunday

Monday, April 13, 2009

So I'm really just posting about Easter so I can put up these cute pictures of my kids. On Saturday we were invited to our friend's home for Easter dinner and an egg hunt. There were about thirty kids.

It is interesting to note that Marc and I were both overdressed. The Virginia dress code must have finally made an impression on us (although I always felt we were too casual while we lived there), all of the adults were in shorts, t-shirts, and flip flops; most of the kids were bare foot. I forgot we're in California and thought "party" meant "dress-up." Silly me.

Sunday dinner was at my parent's house. It was, in a word, delicious.

Here then, are the photos of my (also delicious) children:

We had a small egg hunt in my parents backyard and the only kids were my four. Usually Maddie and Katie are too old for the egg hunt, but I told them they could this time.
They're silly.

And to everyone who has been so sweet to ask about my sister, she is doing well. She has been home from the hospital for a week, and we are so thankful! Happy Easter.

Our Disorders

Friday, April 10, 2009

At our house we have plenty of ADD, at least one ADHD, a mother with loads of anxiety...what we need is some OCD. Anybody have some to spare?

Yes, this is my silverware drawer. Feel free to judge and extrapolate accordingly as to what my other drawers might look like. It is time for some spring organizing for sure!

The Dreaded Easter Dresses

I have two vaguely related things on my mind today.

First, why is it so hard to find modest clothing for my teenage daughters? It drives me CRAZY! I have dubbed this dilemma the triple shopping threat. It is nearly impossible to find clothes for Maddie and Katie that are 1. modest, 2. attractive, and 3. affordable. We almost always have to settle for two out of three.

Retailers, pay attention! I know we are not the only ones out there! I hear other moms and teenage girls complaining about this all the time, and they are not just women of our same religious faith.

Last night the girls and I scooted over to Macy's to try to find Easter dresses. Between the two of them they tried on nearly 50 dresses. We already know that none of the dresses will have sleeves, and the girls are resigned to wearing one of these little beauties with whatever they buy.

Totally shrugalicious, no? So we were just hoping for something close to their knees that didn't show off their lovely lady bumps. Nearly impossible I tell you! They tried on so many adorable dresses that just didn't meet our standards. And frankly, I don't think our standards are all that outrageous. These girls are 14 and 15; they don't need to show off cleavage or miles of leg!

Sigh. Step off box.

The second thought I had was also prompted by our shopping excursion. The dressing rooms in juniors had a line, so we took the dresses the girls wanted to try on and glided up to the lingerie dressing rooms which were empty.

Like I said, they tried on a pile of dresses, but we did hang each one back up and then put them on the clothing rack in the dressing room entry. While I was looking for another size, a sales lady came in the dressing room and told my girls they needed to take all of the dresses back down to Juniors.

When they told me it kind of made me mad. I don't like sales people treating my girls like sub-customers, and it happens pretty often. I said to leave the dresses and I went to pay for the two they had finally chosen (too expensive, attractive, not as long as I'd like but close) and the saleslady asked me if I was planning to take the dresses back downstairs.

I said "no, I wasn't."

Then she sighed and said she hoped I would because there was no one else up there to tend the register. The first thing that went through my mind was a big ole, "not my problem," The second was, "so call someone from juniors to come get them," and the final though, I'm sorry to say it took me so long, was, "why not just help this tired lady out?"

So the girls and I took the dresses downstairs. And although the attendant at the juniors dressing room had been rude earlier, and I didn't like the lingerie lady much either, I still think (putting aside all theories of customer service) it was the right thing to do.

My Flock

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Here is my little flock. As you can see, they are no longer babies. People keep asking me how our farmer fantasy is going and it is kind of embarrassing how I go on. I LOVE these dumb chickens.
It is so fun to watch them scratch around, and they are very friendly. They like to be picked up and petted. Who knew?

Marc and I will hopefully tackle chicken coop repairs this Saturday. I imagine it will take longer and cost more money than we expect, that's just our karma, but I'm looking forward to moving them out of the garage.

If you're thinking about going for it and have any questions, leave a comment and I'll tell you what (little) I know.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

All the Virginia teenagers have left, the last two went to the airport this morning. My four all went to school for the first time in three weeks. Riley and I are absorbing the quiet.

Instead of catching up on laundry or doing last nights dishes (gross) I have taken my computer, dog, and cream of wheat to bed.

I believe this will speed the recovery of my sanity and I will arrive at this afternoon refreshed and ready to proceed to the dollar store for Easter basket little gifties.

Oh, and yesterday I bought Ellie's Easter dress. In this case my procrastination paid off because I had looked at this dress a month ago and loved it but thought it was too expensive. Yesterday, though, it was half off. I love it when that happens.

Sometimes My Best Parenting is Crap

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

When one of my friends moans, "I'm a terrible mom," I am so full of comforting blah, blah, blahs.

I tell them that they are wonderful mothers (and they are). I tell them the proof is in the pudding and that they have raised spectacular children (which they have). I point out that their plates are overflowing and that no one expects them to be perfect all of the time (except them, of course).

And then I share the epiphany that I believe should clear up all their anxiety (ha!). "If God needed children to be raised by perfect people," I say with certainty, "then he wouldn't be putting them in families."

I need someone to call and give me the lecture. Today I failed Ellie. She is not an easy kid, this daughter of mine. Her cup is half empty and her wants runneth over. But this morning she needed me to be loving, and I was impatient and hard. What I want to know is, can you really make it up to your child when you let them down?

She's off at school now. Much hugging and snuggleing shall ensue on her homecoming.

I've Moved

Monday, April 6, 2009

Dearest Friends,

So here I am at blogger because I cannot for the life of me figure out how to get a pretty blog on wordpress. And I was feeling left out because all my friends have such lovely, skinny blogs with great hair cuts and fabulous shoes.

It wasn't fair.

And, I hate to admit it, I really want some blinkies! So now I plan to go a little crazy with the bling and stuff, but I know you love me anyway...for who I am inside...right?

Ooooh, and if you're new, you could go to to see my old but still very nice posts.


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