Wednesday, April 30, 2008

bedtime shenanigans

me: um, why aren't you in your pajamas? please put your pajamas back on. it is time for bed.

captain adventure: (sad face, head down) i can't. they wet.

me: what do you mean they're wet?!

CA: i pee peed in them.

me: how is that possible? you were awake. where did this happen?

CA: in va bafwoom.

me: (after checking the bathroom...the floor was wet, his clothes were wet, and the stool that he does not use for any reason was wet) CA, what is the problem? why did you wet your pants? i don't think this was an accident. was this an accident?

CA: yes.

me: you don't get in trouble for accidents. everyone has accidents. i don't think this was an accident. you thought you had a pull-up on, didn't you? and that is why you went pee pee in your pants. is that what happened?

CA: yes. i faught i had a pull-up on.

me: when you are awake, you go pee pee in the toilet. pee pee in pull-ups is for sleeping only. do you understand?

CA: yes mama. (followed by lots and lots of tears)

me: i love you CA.

CA: i love you too mama.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

waiting for grandma

when i consider my current living situation, i am reminded of the waltons. in the days of the waltons and other families like them, it was not uncommon for several generations to live together under the same roof. of course, in those times, nursing homes and assisted living apartments didn't exist, so the living arrangements were a natural progression of life. it was such a different time...two or three generations of women raising the children...grandpas, dads, and sons working together on the farm or at the mill...children at every stage of life living together under the same roof. they would scatter every morning...the children would go to school, the men would go to work, the women would start their housework or baking...and every afternoon, they would all return home and settle in for the night...preparing for supper, doing nighttime chores, completing homework...then they would all sit down together for supper. in the evening they didn't have 350 tv channels to choose from. they sat around and listened to the radio...or grandpa played the banjo...sometimes the women would pull out their knitting or needlepoint. it was a time to be together.
we (hubby, the kids and i) are living with my parents right now. we need a bigger house. we thought that the best way for us to sell our house would be to move out of it. so, my parents graciously offered for us to live with them. (well...maybe i graciously offered their house to us...but they never said no.) i'm sure we all trip other sometimes. i know our kids are loud. there are more dishes and laundry and more cooking and cleaning than before. but, it works. at least i think it does...we haven't gotten our pink slip yet. the kids love being with their grandparents. my parents love seeing their grandchildren when they wake up in the morning and snuggling with them before bedtime each night. i love having my kids and my parents in the same house.

recently my parents decided to ask grandma jingly keys to move in with us. after considering (for about five minutes) she accepted their invitation. so, for the past few weeks, we've been getting the house ready for her...french doors, new carpet, painting, rearranging the furniture, packing, has been really busy around here. i have to say that i am really looking forward to her living here. what a neat experience for our kids to in the same house as their parents, grandparents, and great-grandma. i think its amazing. i am so excited for them.

we still have quite a list of things that need to be done before she can move in. every day, we do a little more. i hope it will be soon. until then, we'll be waiting for grandma.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

taking appointments for hair cuts

so, we were sitting at the table eating dinner the other night and i was in mid-sentence when i noticed a problem...

(with shock in my voice) ME: um, little mother hen, did you cut your hair?

(with surprise and a straight face) LMH: no. is it cut?

ME: uh, really? you have no idea that your hair is cut? is that the story you're going to stick to?

LMH: yes, mama....(long pause), actually, i forgot, i did cut it.

ME: where? when? how did this happen?

LMH: (giggling) oh. i forgot. i did it while mrs. teacher was in the office.

ME: so you did it at school?

LMH: no.

ME: someone else cut your hair?

LMH: (tears in her eyes) no. (l...o...n...g...pause...) oh wait. i was confused. it wasn't at school. it was upstairs.

ME: where did you get the scissors? when did you do this?

* this conversation continued like this for several more took a while, but she finally admitted that she cut it so she could see what it would look like short and so that her "hair cut girl" would know where to cut. interesting.
soooo, if anyone needs a cut, let me know and we'll get you scheduled with little mother hen. she's quite creative.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

just one reason among many

yesterday afternoon hubby came home from work early. he and a few guys from work are having a chili & salsa cook-off in a few days and he had deemed yesterday as the day to put it all together. but i digress...when he got home, he called the older two into the kitchen and explained what he needed to do and asked for their help. they were sooooo excited! they all wore chef hats and the kids helped hubby make everything. captain adventure would last for about half an hour then go play by himself for a while and come back. little mother hen hung in for the whole afternoon. she and hubby really had a nice time with each other just visiting and cooking. she even tasted the salsa and one of hot peppers. good for her!
this is just one of the many reasons that i love my husband. he took something that was so simple and made it an event for our kids. cool.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

wordless wednesday

no, your eyes do not deceive you. that is a window and captain adventure is in it. he had been trying to get me to open his window all day so he could watch for birds. since i never move fast enough for him, he took matters into his own hands and moved bedroom furniture and placed it just so. then, using the aforementioned furniture, he climbed onto the window sill and stood/knelt there for several minutes...just looking out into the neighborhood. he was very proud of his macgyver skills.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

maybe someone can explain this to me...

well, i'm not going to mention names, but there are some people in my life who do nothing but suck me dry. when i meet their every whim and request, life is good. however, when i am unable or unwilling to accomodate, all hell breaks loose. there's a lot of manipulating, whining, manipulating (did i say that already?), double talk, and broken-record-like repetitiveness. (and, before you ask, i'm not talking about my kids.) the thing is that if i had met them anywhere else (like, if i had met them at work or at a party or something), i would have already cut them off. too bad for me that i'm related to them...and that isn't going to change.

they whine because they don't see the kids as often as they'd like. yet, they live and work within 10 miles of us and rarely call, stop by, or invite us over. they have hurt feelings when they don't get to talk to hubby when they want to. NEWS FLASH: he works 800 hours a week and doesn't get to see his wife and kids...why would he want to spend any precious time off with people who whine at him and manipulate him? (ok...800 hours is a little bit of an exaggeration, but he's gone a lot.)

they whine if we don't spend as much time as they think we should at their house...yet when we stay a little longer to visit, they don't have anything to say. it's the same blah blah blah over and over. we have very little in common, and they couldn't carry on an actual conversation to save their lives. i'm not kidding. for example:

me: hi. how are you?

them: good. (note, there's no reciprocation of the greeting or friendly question)

me: so, how's your mom doing?

them: she's getting along good. (note, there's no expanding on this...there's merely a simple answer)

it is very frustrating. this is not what i signed up for. this is not the kind of relationship i want to have with them. but, it is what it is.

got any suggestions?

if you are reading this and you know who i'm talking about, please don't mention names or relationships.

Monday, April 21, 2008

got the mondays?

check this out. it'll make your monday blahs go away. seriously.

Friday, April 18, 2008

where is the line?

ok, so one of the more prominent stories in the news these days is about the 400+ children who were removed from a polygamist compound in texas. now, i fully support freedom to practice whatever religion a person chooses. and i do not want the government infringing on my privacy, nor would i want them telling me how to raise my children. that being said, if someone is doing something that is 1. illegal and 2. has the potential to harm their children, they should not be surprised when the state intervenes on behalf of the children.

i believe that those women are brain-washed...but that's just my opinion. if they grew up in that compound and never knew anything else, how could they possibly know it was 1. illegal 2. had the potential to harm their children 3. the possibility existed that the government could take their children from them? i am sure that the children (and women too) are in great pain over this. their world has been turned upside down. everything and everyone they know has been taken from them. from birth, they have been told that the outside world is evil and that disobedience will lead to eternal damnation. they have been told that every single day of their lives. if these young women and girls have made a seemingly free choice (to marry at a young age and start bearing children) based on questionable teachings that have been taught to them since birth, maybe it's not a free choice after all.

now, as far as i've read the main defense seems to be that the state is violating their freedom to practice their religion. practicing your religion is one thing and fully supported by our constitution. but people don't get to break laws under the guise of freedom of religion. if this group was producing and selling meth, we wouldn't even blink an eye when the state intervened on behalf of the welfare of the children. but, because they are a religious group practicing their religious beliefs, people are crying foul. what if someone started a new religion and the teachings included the thought that all people who are left handed were evil and should be killed in order to be obedient to God? would we as a society allow that? um, probably not.
at least i hope not...we seem to be more and more tolerant of this type of aberrant behavior. people tape them selves having sex and post it on the internet and we watch it. talk show hosts call our military personnel murderers and rapists and we keep on tuning in every day. celebrities rant and rave about the war in iraq and make comments bashing the military and our country...and we keep paying to see their movies and concerts. teenagers think it is perfectably acceptable to tape themselves beating classmates so they can post it on youtube. think about that for a minute. who in their right mind would think that that was cool or acceptable?! we teach people how to treat us and talk to us. if we continue accepting unacceptable behavior under the guise of freedom of speech and freedom of religion, people will continue behaving in this manner. where is the line?

three things

1. three things that scare me: dying before my kids get to know me, the devil, giant spiders

2. three people who make me laugh: my kids, my husband, adam sandler (ok, so that's 5)

3. three things i love: chocolate, scrapbooking, photography

4. three things i hate: lies, manipulation, whining

5. three things on my desk: pictures of our kids, paper clips, scissors

6. three things i'm doing right now: watching BB9, writing this post, talking to my mom

7. three things i want to do before i die: finish scrapbooking for our kids, travel with my family, learn how to enjoy the moment (on a regular basis)

8. three things i can do: bake grandma jingly keys' oatmeal cookies like she used to, organize a kitchen, CPR

9. three ways to describe my personality: mother-hennish, thoughtful, strong

Thursday, April 17, 2008

grandma's kitchen table

at grandma jingly keys' house, memories were made by the minute. some of my best memories of her revolve around her kitchen table. first, let me describe the table...round and was probably close to six feet in white with charming 1970s-ish gold flecks. when there were family parties, we'd crowd around the table elbow to elbow and eat (faygo chicken, corn, crockpot o'mashed potatoes, and, of course, gram's delicious cookies or texas sheet cake). we had a lot of family meals and parties there.

my earliest recollections are of her making oatmeal cookies and caramel corn at that table. when i close my eyes i can still smell her kitchen on those days. sometimes i would help her count cups of sugar and oats as she measured for her quadruple batches of cookies. when i was old enough, she would let me stir the boiling hot caramel for the caramel corn. her home is where i learned to bake.

we would chit-chat as we worked. she used to tell me stories from her childhood. i'd tell her about school and my friends. sometimes we'd talk about what was happening on her shows (ryan's hope and AMC). once in a while, she'd pour me a small glass of tab. i was in heaven!

sometimes, she'd do office work for grandpa's business at that table. i'd sit with her and "work" too...typing on her typewriter, writing letters, and sometimes coloring.

i can remember her changing the babies' diapers on that kitchen talble. she'd lay a bath towel down, get a warm wet washcloth (no wipes back then) and get to business.

gram and grandpa certainly got their money's worth out of that gold-flecked table. that's the kind of kitchen table i want to have.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

shift your focus

i think that on some days it is very easy for me to become caught up in my own little world. i mean, really, there are a lot of things going on around here...several major projects and also the day-to-day tasks...and it all requires planning, time, thought, and yes, unfortunately action. some days (like yesterday) i'm not sure that any of it will ever get done. yesterday i felt like i was chasing my tail. for every task that i completed, two more took it's place. truth be told, i had a pity party for myself that lasted for the better part of the afternoon. in fact, hubby made me a delicious margarita as my party beverage. he even went back out to the store to buy sweet & sour since the kind i bought tasted like toilets. when i told him not to bother, he looked me in the eye and said, "please, let me do this. i want to do this for you. i know you've been thinking about this all day." that is the moment i realized that i needed to change my attitude. while i was busy throwing a baby fit about all of the things that i ended up having to do that i hadn't planned on doing, he managed to keep all three kids fed, taken care of, safe, and occupied. he did his best. did i do mine?

i think i did my best in the morning...i had the day all planned out in my head...then came a phone call that threw a kink in my day. instead of meeting the task with my best foot forward, i started thinking about all of the other things that i had to do that i wouldn't be able to do because of the phone call. i got caught up in how i was being affected by things. but, guess isn't about me. not at all. not even for one minute. i needed to look at the big picture instead of what was right in front of me. sometimes you have to shift your focus.

Monday, April 14, 2008

exercise your brain

click here and stretch your brain while you earn rice to donate to hungry people all over the world.

love monday

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in my heart)
i am never without it
(anywhere i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling)
i fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet)
i want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true) and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows higher than soul can hope or mind can hide) and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)
e. e. cummings

sometimes i get caught up in routines and schedules and forget about the bottom line. i love this poem. it reminds how simple, pure, and all-encompassing love can be. today, i will remember that i carry many hearts with me. i will act on this truth in a simple and meaningful way.

until later...

Saturday, April 12, 2008

don't forget to live in the moment

things i will never get tired of (in no particular order)

1. watching and listening as our kids are placed into position and the famous "stretch tickle" is performed by my husband...i think they pee their pants sometimes

2. real butter

3. eating a hot meal from beginning to end without having to rewarm it...again...and again

4. our kids' infectious laughter

5. adult conversation uninterrupted by kid conversation

6. people who wipe AND flush without having to be reminded

7. the way our kids ask for "daddy and me days"

8. watching my husband watch me

9. my dad dirty dogging himself without knowing it

10. friends who feel like family

11. holding hands with my husband

12. "i love you mama"

13. the smell of grandma jingly keys' oatmeal cookies baking in the oven

14. being present the exact moment in time that our kids master a task

15. the look on captain adventure's face when he is honest-to-goodness, every-bone-in-his-body excited about something

16. the way little mother hen takes care of her younger brothers

17. sitting on the beach, feeling my feet covered by sand, listening to the waves crash on the shore

18. telling our kids the stories of their lives

19. letting our kids experience the same simple joys that i did as a child

20. popcorn parties

21. fresh strawberries

22. watching sammysosa "tika tika tika" himself and giggle

23. reliving childhood moments with family and friends

24. big brother (i know, i know...but i just can't stop watching it!)

25. this

pancakes that made momo proud

my mom loves to talk about digestive system health. she is a pusher of double fiber bread, flax seed, and steel cut oatmeal. and, although these things may make us more regular, sometimes they leave a bit to be desired in the taste and texture department. however, we came across this recipe in a magazine lately:

delicious oatmeal pancakes (adapted from rodale's yoga life summer 2006 issue page 32)

1 cup steel cut oatmeal (or long cooking)...UNCOOKED
2 cups buttermilk
1 T. canola oil
1 egg
2 egg whites
2 t. vanilla
4 T. light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (or you can do 3/4 cup whole wheat, 3/4 cup all purpose if you're a wieney)
2 t. cinnamon
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda

combine oatmeal and buttermilk in a large bowl and let stand (for at least 15 minutes if using steel let it soften...shorter time for long cooking). beat in eggs. add oil and vanilla. in a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients. add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir to combine.

now, make your pancakes. you can eat these by themselves. they have great flavor! or, you could top with fruit or syrup. you can refrigerate or freeze leftover pancakes and either heat up in microwave or use your toaster.

it's a sad day

recently, when i went to read one of my usual blogs, i found that the author has taken a break from blogging. i admire her, really. she has made some really difficult decisions lately...she and her husband have decided to homeschool their children. because of this decision, she felt it best to stop blogging for the time being and focus on preparing to homeschool. i enjoyed reading her because she seems like me and i felt validated...pretty normal (whatever that is), married to an amazing man, she has three kids, likes to blog, very crafty, addicted to taking pictures, sometimes puts her foot in her mouth...but always has good intentions. she blogs about everyday life...things i can relate to...the trials of being a SAH mom, trying to balance everyday life, being married, and lots of other things. she is open-minded. she is a strong woman. and she always had links to other good blogs and such. i guess that everyone needs a break now and then. she is putting her family first. and, although i have never met her, i wouldn't expect anything less.

Rule #1

September 28, 2007

When you’re cooking cheese toasties and roasted red pepper & tomato soup for supper, make sure you know where the cordless phone is at all times. Whoops. Well, at least our dinner didn’t look like this phone. So, this event was a great segue into a discussion about stove safety with the kids. I told them that the stove was so hot that it melted the phone. I asked them to imagine if that was their hand or arm. We talked about why we don’t play around or with the stove. They sat open mouthed with their eyes wide open listening intently. (note to self: fire makes the kids sit quietly and listen to what I’m saying)

That being said, WHO DOES THIS?! I mean, what is my problem that I can’t see the phone melting into a pool of hot plastic?


October 4, 2007
after being in my sick bed all week (since sunday) we’re now living in the midst of the packerton dump. but, i digress. today after spending the better part of 3 days in bed, i drug my ass out of bed. i waded through the dirty laundry on our bedroom floor, stepped on and crushed approximately 37 cheerios on the kitchen floor, then climbed over the pile of toys and blankets on the living room floor to get to the couch…where i sat my sick ass down to rest (it was a long walk from the bedroom!). just as i sat down, i hear a muffled voice yelling to me from the bathroom, “mahmmm! come wight now. i need your help wight now.” so, back over the pile of toys and blankets, across the kitchen floor (where something was really squishy) and into the bathroom. there i saw captain adventure, standing over the toilet…wearing nothing but his orange “monkey see, monkey do, monkey get in trouble too” t-shirt (he thinks he needs to be at LEAST 1/2 naked to use the toilet)…with a scared, sad, pathetic look on his face, he looks at the toilet then looks at me and said, “see, VAT, is the pwobwem. it’s a pwobwem. yeah.” the problem he was referring to is the fact that the little shield that attaches to the front of his potty seat had come off and fallen into the toilet and was now sitting quietly at the bottom of the toilet…next to his poop.
yeah, i’d say that’s a pwobwem. good thing mama keeps giant rubber gloves around for just such an occasion.