Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday Musings

Monday is almost over.  And I realize I haven't 'mused' yet.  I must be sick.  I don't hardly have anything the hidden depths of my small brain to offer.  Just that it's been a great past few days.  You see I was 'muttering' a couple posts back how with lots of other people around we don't get to see two special ones at our house all that much.  Well my 'muttering' must have mattered.  Or not.  But anyway they came!  And we are so glad and happy and refreshed and a lot of other nice adjectives.  They make the world nicer just by being in it.  I'll leave it at that.

Mira heard that she had a dentist appointment for next week.  So she seriously got out the dental floss and started to floss.  Then she said, 'mom?  It's really kinda hard to floss when you don't have any teeth.'.  Lucky for her and us I see some peeking through finally after a year of waiting.

It's amazing how much cleaner and organized the house is when there is no puzzle to attend to.  

Trevor got his hair all buzzed off tonight compliments of the Chef's Custom Cuts shop in the back bathroom.  He looks like a skinned cat.  But he wanted it off for his big tournament basketball games the next few days.

I sense spring.  Even in the cold wind.  It's very encouraging.  I did see someone post some pictures down south of flowering trees.  People like that shouldn't be on FB.  It makes our hope of spring somewhat futile. 

See I told you there wasn't much to muse about.  You might want to move on to something a touch more interesting...  or wait until the next Monday!  

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Happy Birthday to my mom...

She gave me life.
She nurtured me and my much older sister and mean older brother with a love that only a mother has.
She radiates a Spirit of kindness.
She's devoted to my dad.
She can get the giggles over the silliest of things.
She gets swept with emotion over the needs of others.
She loves to share what she has.
She is my example what a  'keeper at home' really is.
She is my mother, guide, helper, confidant, and now, my friend.

Happy Birthday to a very dear mom.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Today we had an excuse to get together because a couple of the ladies here had birthdays this week.  And as always, it was a very nice time.  I may have mentioned before about friends.  I am blessed with a bounty of them that cannot be numbered.  But each friend I have is incredibly special in their own way.  My best friend is the Chairman.  And second best?  I just don't know.  All of them.  And for them, I'm thankful.

So today was nice.  We all met at the appointed time and at the appointed place and sat and shared about our lives.  Our children.  Our struggles.  Our silly stories.  And our souls.  You see I don't think I've mentioned all that much about the area we live in.  It has many, many wonderful intact families.  Like a lot.  There's a very good side to that.  We get together.  Swap our children.  Visit on the phone.  Cry together.  Laugh together.  And most importantly, have fellowship together.  But there's a downside to so many wonderful people.  We have to share the two that are sowing the precious seed in this area.  We get one visit a year and maybe two.  Throw in a visit for specials... and that's about it.  Another downfall is when we have company over, we can't have everyone over or our doors would come off the hinges.  There's also risks of talking about others. Slighting someone.  Or worse causing offence.  But so far, so good.  And for that I'm thankful.  

When we all get together, sometimes I like to do a mental count as to how many children are a result of so many ladies.   One time the count was over 30 when we were all together.  Amazing.  And wonderful.  And scary.  We ladies are nurturing the future.  And hopefully, we do a decent job.  I love that there are those 'ahead' of us in this child-rearing experience.  I've received excellent advice.  Told at times to not sweat the small stuff.  And encouraged to always put the first things first.  Good friends with good values.  And for those, I'm thankful.  

I'm emotional and can have tears fall over the silliest things.  But I'm not good sometimes at telling my friends that I'm thankful for them.  Tonight I want to.  Because I am.  And for this, I'm thankful. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My morning...

Out at the park today!
I bet you thought it was the Big Lady that was going to tell you something about her morning.  Well guess what?  It'll be far more interesting because I will tell you about my morning.  It started out very dull.  The Big Lady whisked all those little people out the door.  The Big Guy left after taking care of some extra snow.  And then I laid on my dog bed for hours and hours.  Or maybe it was a few minutes.  I don't really know because I'm a dog and time frames don't mean much.  Anyway I soon heard the five sweetest words I know.  "Wanna go for a ride?" the Big Lady asked in her chirpy way.  Of course I do.  Lets go!  Now!  Whoot!  Ready or not!  

And we were off.  We stopped after a bit at a dog park.  I leaped out and we did a lot of hiking through snow.  But the annoying thing is that there are dogs there.  Really.  I always bow down to any of them.  I like to think I'm right-smart as you never know who'll give you a good bite.  I'll let them be the Alpha.  I must say that  I do find it annoying how they always get their big, wet noses right in my private places.  That always bugs me.  Come on!  Show some decency!  I always like the dog people though.  They always say what a cute puppy I am and seem shocked when Big Lady tells them I'm three.  I can't help it I have a sweet, soft face and big feet.  

Then!  Then!  We go to the dog food store.  Now you have to realize that we dogs have a sense of smell up to 10,000 times better than you people.  So walking into a store like that with treats and rawhide and bags and bags and bags of kibble is, well like none other.  Picture your favorite Thanksgiving dinner, birthday meal, plus all your favorite foods all in one place cooked up and ready to devour.  Multiply it by 10,000 and you'll see why I get excited in there.  Wowser. The best part of the walk through the store to get my favorite bag of food?  CLEAN UP IN AISLE 9!  They didn't even have to announce it.  The Big Lady and I go around the corner and there it was.  A mess that I personally needed to tend to.  I think the broken open bag was dog food for daschunds, but who cares?  It tasted good to the last crumb.  Then since I was in the mood for taste-testing, I stuck my big, sweet head into the treat bin and snuck one before the Big Lady could see me and yell.  Well I got it half-way gone before I heard the familiar sound of her chewing me out.  But I was smart.  I nosed into the biggest bones, so I got all I wanted.  

I'm sorry I haven't been more naughty because I'd love to tell you all the funny story.  So this will have to do.  My morning out and about with the Big Lady.  Pardon me now as I hear my dog bed calling.  
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Monday, February 21, 2011

Monday Musings

Sure hope I didn't have some of you checking the site over and over again wondering if I've 'mused' yet.  Then again, I don't think I'm as wildly popular as I like to think I am.  You see we had a little winter break here and there's been no school since last Thursday noon.  So I've been too busy to 'muse'.

The weather has been a focus of late.  Last week we were teased with some very balmy temperatures for this part of the country.  We upper-midwesterners are pretty forgiving about winter.  We realize it will come.  It will be cold.  And snowy.  And then soon the days get longer and spring comes.  We can handle it.  But give us the feel of sun and the smell of wet grass and then after all that wonderful stuff bring on another snow storm and you've got some testy folks out there.  But it is soon the end of February and the days will get warmer.  Or so we hope.  

I spent 24 hours at my parent's home again.  It was nice to catch up with them again after their last venture to the far east.  A couple leisurely visits over tea or coffee.  The kids got some shopping done.  And we ate yummy things as ever.  This time they made a 'Chinese meal' right down to mandatory chop sticks.  We all enjoyed it immensely.  I just find it humorous that my own dad did NOT like rice much while we were growing up.  He was a meat/potatoes kind of guy.  But because of the love he feels for some souls far away, he now enjoys their food as well.  Interesting I say.

Son #1 got his first model car to put together, glue, and paint.  He loves working on it.  Like really loves it.  Like so much that he forgot he has two sisters to pester to puddles.  So it's been basically peaceful here at the ranch.  Kinda strange really.

And so another tooth was lost by daughter #2.  She loses them.  The gums get all serious looking like a replacement will pop into place and it doesn't.  So she's got quite the snaggle-toothed grin these days.  I took a picture just so when she's a beautiful young lady, she'll remember what she looked like.

Yesterday since our afternoon meeting was cancelled, I hunched over for awhile hours and finished the puzzle.  But... one daughter kept coming over and wanted me to stop.  Finally in exasperation she said, 'Mom, some day you'll be old and can do these puzzles all the time when we are gone.  But right now you have us to play with.  So play with us!'  Point taken.  And the puzzle is done!

Four more boxes gone through in the basement from our move over two years ago.  If I haven't needed it by now, will I ever?  Probably not.  Good riddance to Goodwill!

And finally, this is altogether most riveting.  Which side of the sink do you wash dishes in the kitchen?  Nearly every time I have someone helping do dishes at our home, they ask, 'which side do you wash on?'  Why do they ask?  Or why does it matter?  I actually wash on the non-disposer side so I can continue to dump stuff down while I'm doing dishes.  What's the advantage one way or the other?  Yes, I know... riveting.  

So without further ado, here's some snapshots of the past few days....

enjoying Grandma time

enjoying her new drawing pad

enjoying chopsticks

enjoying us there (or so we hope)

enjoying the 'bus' they created on Sunday in the foyer
enjoying a Sunday afternoon nap

enjoying father/son time with the new model car 

enjoying a busy tooth fairy

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

In case you've never seen this...

Answers given by 
2nd grade school children to the following questions: 

Why did God make mothers?

1.  She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2.  Mostly to clean the house.
3.  To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?

1.  He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2.  Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3.  God made my mom just the same like he made me.  He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?

1.  God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2.  They had to get their start from men's bones.  Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?

1.  We're related.
2.  God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's mom like me.

What kind of a little girl was your mom?

1.  My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2.  I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3.  They say she used to be nice.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?

1.  His last name.
2.  She had to know his background.  Like is he a crook?  Does he get drunk on beer?
3.  Does he make at least $800 a year?  Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?

1.  My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world.  And my mom eats a lot
2.  She got too old to do anything else with him.
3.  My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?

1.  Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.
2.  Mom.  You can tell by room inspection.  She sees the stuff under the bed.
3.  I guess mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?

1.  Moms work at work and work at home and dads just go to work at work.
2.  Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3.  Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friends.
4.  Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine..

What does your mom do in her spare time?

1.  Mothers don't do spare time.

To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your mom perfect?

1.  On the inside she's already perfect.  Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2.  Diet.  You know, her hair.  I'd diet, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?

1.  She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean.  I'd get rid of that.
2.  I'd make my mom smarter.  Then she would know it was my sister who did it not me.
3.  I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on the back of her head.


Yep.  Still playing with the exercise balls all.  the.  time.  If you think our children come home between the meetings on Sunday and sit quietly and read, well you haven't met them personally.  Two of the many young people changed so they can 'do stuff' and then they started to do this balancing act in the living room.  Luckily it was away from bricks and hard things.  And the winner is....  Mira at 13 seconds if I remember right.  And she didn't even change clothes.  

 I read something this week about kids.  A mother had a fear that she was treating her kids like a 'three-headed child' and it gave me pause.  You see in "normal" families, you pace yourself a bit.  You have a child and then wait two to three years and another comes along.  There is a bit of breathing room.  And uniqueness with each kid because they all are at different stages.  Well we didn't have much choice in how our children came.  I feel sorry at times because I never got to really sit and enjoy a baby that much.  Two months after little Rayna came, here came baby boy.  Then in the throes of busy-ness, here came baby girl the day before Rayna turned three. I was in reaction mode most the time.  But I did hold them - a LOT.  Rarely left them with anyone unless I absolutely had to.  And we made the most of moments.  But now they are honestly often like triplets.  Best of friends.  Worst of enemies.  The constant squabbles are getting less as they get older.  As parents, we try to embrace their differences.  And more and more the Chairman and I are trying to have alone-time with one and do a 2/3 split if possible.  Saturday I had time alone with DD #1.  And she loved it.  And I loved it.  We talked.  Shopped.  Laughed.  And she felt special.  And I felt like I got to know her just a little bit better.  Because she is uniquely her.  And her equally-loved siblings are uniquely them.  They are not a three-headed child.  I hope I remember this for the next so-many years.

Puzzles.   I can't stand them.  They bring out the worst in me.  You see I like things all in their proper place.  I like things 'done'.  And so puzzles are not a good thing here.  My dear family bought me two new ones recently.  I whipped through one.  Decided I wouldn't touch the 1000-piece one for a bit since it would take awhile.  But it is out on the card table and I am frantically trying to get it all put back together and 'done'.  For all the hobbies out there, puzzles are the most troubling.  I can't get a warm neck from a new scarf.  No new clothes from sewing.  Not even a beautifully hand-stamped card to share with a loved one.  Nope.  Just a puzzle all put back together like it should.  Stare at it for a day or so.  Get the slightest of satisfactions and dump it all unceremoniously back into its box and stuff it on a shelf.  Dumb I say!

Son #1 is in his 5th grade basketball season.  They started the season with two very successful losses.  Like bad losses.  And now they've won three in a row.  Last night they were down by 12 points at the half.  Not a good thing for 5th grade basketball.  But they came behind and won in the last seconds.  It felt like the Super Bowl win!  Really!  Nothing like the feeling of your heart bursting when you see your kid make some pretty neat plays and see his grin as he looks for you in the stands.

Do you have pet peeves?  I was lying in bed the other night not sleeping and made a mental list of things that just 'bug' me.  Nothing big really, but just like a little sliver in the finger of life.  Mine really don't make sense and it is a partial list.  Here goes:  cracked finger/thumb tips or heels in the winter.  Wind chimes of any kind.  Computer generated music.  Fake flowers.  Seams on your tights that are crooked in your boots.  Mismatched tightness of any kind - as a kid, braids or pony tails, shoes, wrist elastic,  you name it.  I want it exactly the same in feel on both sides.  Breathing.  No, if you are my friend or family or foe I give you permission to breathe.  Just not on me.  And finally!  This is riveting stuff.  Broccoli bands - you know those tough little rubber bands keeping it all together?  I don't like them.

So now you can all go back about your business feeling smug that you know just a little bit more about me.  And please... don't breathe... on me.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Monday Musings

I'm a bit more like this... 
than this...

Happy Valentines Day!  I'm not sure if I should make it Valentine's Day or Valentines Day.  You see it both ways...  But anyway, hope you can share it with those you love.  On days like today, I wish I was more about romance.  Sweetness.  Lovely things.  But the most appealing thing to me is ordinary and natural and consistency.  This weekend, the Chairman and a couple of the many young people here came home with big smiles and a beautiful bouquet.  I love it because it is from them... my loved ones.  But the highlight of the weekend was spent taking a huge hike with the Chairman and the many young people.  Then they broke off and the Chairman and I were alone in the woods with the dog tromping through deep snow.  Listening to woodpeckers.  Sharing thoughts without interruption.  That to me is true romance.  It beats candles and chocolates and potpourri any day.  But if you are the chantilly lace, dark chocolate, and silky things kind of person, well power to you!

Love is a mysterious thing really.  As most of you know I wasn't hit with the love bug until later by many people's standards.  I was lying in a lumpy bed in Venezuela when the tears came one night.  I had been out of contact with the Chairman for a week at this point.  We had been dating for a year.  And I realized for the first time, 'I love him'.  And he was thousands of miles away.  I still had a week to go down in South America, but yet I felt resigned.  Relaxed.  And finally able to admit that I actually loved someone beyond my family at that level.  It was yet another year before he proposed.  But I'm thankful for that.  We had time to think about our lives.  Our future.  And work out those little kinks that people have even before we stood before the judge and friends/family saying we would be together until death do we part.

Love grows even deeper and richer as you share life's journey.  I'm thankful now that the Chairman and I have shared experiences together that no one else entered into.  We spent several hospital stays alone in rooms because of infertility and loss.  We were alone with our baby girl when she died.  We were handed our gift from China and went to our hotel room - just us.  We had a blessed week alone with our new daughter without others.  We experienced the joy of another adoption with most of the contact, decisions, and conversation going on between us and birth parents without involvement of others.  And then we had the birth of our third child... just us alone experiencing the joy of new life.  

I don't know what the future holds.  None of us do.  I'm confident we are going to have wonderful, joyous days yet.  And I'm sure we will also have some very sad ones coming.  But I have the Chairman.  And he's not about chocolates and superfluous things.  He's about stability and surety and constancy and love.  And that is priceless.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thursday's thoughts...

Just spent over an hour with my head in our oven.  You see I've been 'Flying' for a week now.  Today's task was to wipe down the front of the major appliances.  Well I'm not an underachiever like that.  I thought I'd clean the insides as well.  It was clearly needful.  Really in some ways, a dirty oven is a badge of honor.  Means you've cooked meals for your loved ones, right?  Ours wasn't terribly bad.  Just sorta.  So I pulled out the spray can of oven cleaner and went to town.  Realized about 4 seconds into it that I hadn't gotten the fume-free stuff.  Egads.  Nasty.  My lungs were burning.  Eyes watering.  The can had a little quote on it:  "good food deserves to be cooked in a clean oven".  Sure that sounds nice.   But the caustic chemicals within leave you with lungs burning so badly that you probably won't live very long to care if your oven is dirty or not.  A couple things though.  Why can't you look up "oven cleaners" and have a couple people show up with smiles and gloves on to do that nasty job?  There's people to do anything else.  Not that we'd hire anyone or anything.  Another thing that puzzles me is why I am so distressed by a few remaining black spots I can't get off after repeated tries.  It looks LOTS better than it did, but I focus on the two spots left behind.  Not a good character quality.  And finally, I'm wondering what you all do to keep your oven's shiny-clean?  I'm not too proud to ask for advice.

Went to pick up some birthday cards.  The three I liked were all .99/piece which is nice since I'm so cheap frugal.  When I checked out the lady asked why I didn't use the coupon.  She tells me to go back to get the $2 off coupon if I bought three cards.  You do the math.  Good deal Lucille!

Chicken tortellini soup is on the menu for supper.  Dredged up the recipe from about 12 years ago.  Hope the kids like it.  Well, two will, one won't.  But that's how it rolls around here.

I could tell you how cold it is here, but you'd probably give me your torrid tales of frostbite from your corner of the world.  So I'll leave it at that.  Lucky for us, the forecast looks promising.

The other night we were driving past an assisted living place where one of our friends lives.  We haven't gone to see her yet and it has been bothering me.  So I tell the kids we should go in and see her real soon.  A voice pops up and says, 'don't you think it's a little too late Mom?'.  Um no.  It's never too late to visit someone that's lonely.  Even if they don't remember we were there.  It can make their family feel good and more importantly, make us feel like we did something for someone else (I was getting a bit heavy on the lesson).  'But mom!  She's in the grave!'.  No she's not!  Then another voice pops up, 'she's thinking of so-and-so (the sister of the one we were talking about).  Whew!  At least we're not too late... yet.

I spent four hours yesterday walking around a big mummy exhibit at our local museum with a pile of sixth graders.  It was interesting and boring at the same time.  I'm not into artifacts and intellectual things because I'm well, simple (stop snickering you mean older brother).  The kids were very, very well behaved.  So that helped.  And it is nice seeing your child  interacting with her peers.  I found that more fascinating than the mummies.

Well no one told Lisi that the wind chill isn't real favorable to a lot of outdoor activity.  So I must don my boots and head out to the frozen tundra....  still can't figure out how to tell her to go off walking on her own.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Bango and Bucks

waiting to go on the court

back in the tunnel

Richmond school band coming off of the court

Mira looking at herself on the jumbotron

One of our main player dudes

Bango coming up to give Trevor the business

Happy with all his goods!
It was going to be a fun evening.  Daughter number 1 of the Many Young People here was to toot her clarinet for the local NBA team - the Milwaukee Bucks.  We were enticed by a cheap ticket price and the 'thrill' factor to see our daughter at center court with her classmates (not flubbing mind you) the anthem.  We get our tickets scanned, pass the turn style and just as we did a very nice lady in her mid-30's came up to me.  "Would you like your kids to be part of the Buck's starting line-up tonight?"  Well, sure!  What do we do.  So she tells me where we should all be at a certain time and she disappears into the crowd.  We go to our spot and there's hardly anyone there but a man with his daughter.  Eventually two more come.  And that's it.  The lady comes back with two helpers.  We sign wavers.  Get important back-stage pass stickers.  The kids don t-shirts and hats and green beads.  And off we go into the bowels of the Bradley Center!  We stay in a holding place for a few minutes.  Toronto Raptors are coming back to the locker room after practicing.  They are very, very tall when you are next to them.  Then we head down a fancy hallway.  We pass the Raptor's locker room.  They are chirping chanting some pre-game thing.  We go by the Buck's locker room.  Just some talking going on.  Then we head out to the court!  The kids sit down right in front of the Buck's bench.  We parents are right behind them.  Eventually it gets close to game time after some presentations of this or that and here comes the players standing all around us.  I felt like I was eight again.  They are super tall.  And polite - most of them.  And really nice to the kids.  So the kids get their pictures on the jumbo tron.  Bango the mascot comes over and harasses T. a bit with his hat.  Then lights go out and crazy-loud music and the kids stand there with their hands out giving 'high fives' to the Buck's players as they are introduced.  And then it is over.  And we give back our special back stage pass stickers so we don't go to places we aren't invited.  Then we become ordinary again and schlup up the stairs to find our seats up high over center court.

But that's not all!  Trevor was a lucky guy.  He was sitting with a friend and because he was in that section, got a coupon for a free McD's quarter pounder with cheese!  Then Bango shot up a t-shirt.  Trevor had snuck into the aisle and snatched it.  He was one happy kid.

So our ordinary fun night turned out to be a memory for them.  And for us too!

Now off to the next fun event.  I'm to chaperon a bunch of 6th graders through the big "Mummies" exhibit in downtown Milwaukee.  Could be interesting....

p.s.  The Canadian anthem was sang by this male tenor voice that was bone-chilling beautiful.  The sounds and the song.  Hats off to you north of the border!  Your anthem is lovely.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday Musings

Well I'm sure most of you know that the Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl last night. It is a huge thing for those wearing cheeseheads in cheeseland. Like a really big deal. Like a special section of the paper dedicated to the team and game for the past two weeks and now another bigger, huger section dissecting every nuance of last night's game with pictures to boot.  Am I personally happy?  Well sure!  Will I be excited for the draft come spring and the early games in next year's season?  Probably not.  But if they start winning in post-season play, well I can't wait to jump on the wagon and play in the band again.

The Chairman left us.  That good-for-nothing... oh wait a minute.  He left us because his job took him away.  And he loves us and would never leave for long.  In fact, he called just an hour or so after leaving yesterday  wondering what we were doing and how we were.  Because he loves us.  He'll be home again by tomorrow evening.  And he'll be happy to get home.  Because he loves us.  We're pretty lucky to have a Chairman like that.

My parents at his very moment are flying next to North Korea on their way home from special days far away from here.  Kinda neat to flight track a plane and see where they are at.  Makes the world seem small somehow.

Speaking of flight, I've been 'Flying' with the Flylady.  There are things about that whole concept that are good.  Instead of putting something here to eventually put it there, why not put it 'there' in the first place?  As most of you know I'm not into clutter and stuff and such, so lots she talks about doesn't apply.  But yet there are some things that have inspired me to just deal with it.  No procrastinating.  Today's job is to clean the garbage can in the kitchen.  I probably wouldn't be doing it today if I hadn't read that I should.  And yes, my sink shines.

But our microwave is protesting.  It started 'clicking' a few weeks ago.  Then while I was warming up my milk/water for bread last week, it beeped and I pulled it out and it was still cold.  Ugh.  So it is hit and miss right now with it.  The problem is these appliances came with the house.  After only 4 years, we had to replace the dishwasher.  The microwave is next.  I'd like to have the appliances all be from the same 'family', but sure don't want to get another lemon.  Anyone have an over-the-range one you think is right-dandy?  So far we have Kitchen Aid for the stove/microwave.  Our Bosch replacement dishwasher has been flawless so far.

Daughter #1 had some friends over for Friday night/Saturday morning.  Do you know why I love sleepovers at our house so much?  Because it is so wonderful when the kids go home and it is just 'us' again.  I'm just kidding.  Sorta.  Depends on which kids are here.

Son #1 got to spend the day snowboarding at the local ski hill on Saturday.  He absolutely loves it.  But he loves anything that lets him be athletic and with others.  His worst punishment would be to put him in a room alone.  Daughter #1's ideal situation is to be put in a room alone.  Kids are a wonder.

Well Flylady wouldn't like me sitting here being idle.  So I best fly through the house and get it all in shape again.  I don't put on shoes though... my Crocs will do thankyouverymuch.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Happy New Year!

Today is the Chinese New Year.  The year of the rabbit.  Usually it isn't too big of a deal to us.  But this is Rayna's Chinese symbol.  It was mentioned often when we were in China adopting her.  And now it is the rabbit's year again.  Here's what they say about people born the year of the rabbit:  

People born in the Year of the Rabbit are articulate, talented, and ambitious. They are virtuous, reserved, and have excellent taste. Rabbit people are admired, trusted, and are often financially lucky. They are fond of gossip but are tactful and generally kind. Rabbit people seldom lose their temper. They are clever at business and being conscientious, never back out of a contract. They would make good gamblers for they have the uncanny gift of choosing the right thing. However, they seldom gamble, as they are conservative and wise. They are most compatible with those born in the years of the Sheep, Pig, and Dog.

Is this true?  I'm not sure.  But it's kinda like a horoscope - kinda makes sense if you think about it for awhile.  

So... Happy Chinese New Year!  Maybe we'll order take-out to celebrate! Then again, maybe we'll be eating leftovers... 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Words on Wednesday

looks toasty warm, eh?

a little snow came down

so pretty blowing

The Chairman clearing a path

the silly dog and the Chef

so sweet when they aren't fighting

Well they promised it would come and it did.  A doozy of a storm.  It was fun because we were prepared.  And the Chairman got home in good-proper time before it really whomped us.  I think SE Wisconsin was so preoccupied from the impending storm that they nearly forgot the Packers are playing in the Super Bowl on Sunday.  Or maybe not.  Go Pack Go!  
I woke up a bit later today knowing right-well there was no school.  Got up and thought, it is really chilly today!  Maybe the Chairman turned down the furnace further last night to let the wood stove work its charm.  Or again, maybe not.  It was 57 in here.  Oh boy.  We head down and look at the furnace that isn't running.  Scratch our collective heads.  The Chairman heads out to the frozen tundra to make sure nothing is blocked.  It isn't.  On a whim I flip off the switch and flip it back on again and voila!  It kicked into gear.  Now mind you I have no clue what I did.  But I'm glad I saved $327 by not having to call a repair guy.  Wondering if the gale-force winds had anything to do with it?  I see on FB that a few others had similar issues.  So maybe our furnace isn't that special.  Just a bit touchy...

One of the many young children told us of a fellow-student that gets rewarded for grades.  Seemed like a sorta-good idea. So we said we'd give thus-and-such for an 'A', and 'B'.  Nothing for a 'C', you pay this much for a 'D', and dear me if you get an 'F', well, I take all the money out of your bank account or something like that.  I tabulated the earnings for this quarter.  Fortunately, or unfortunately, they did quite well.  I'm certain we bumped up a couple grades by the incentive.  But I read conflicting reports on this method of encouragement.  Money talks here.  But is it the best?  Hey you moms out there... what have you done?

Got a call today that we get to have others come tonight since the appointed place for this week is buried.  So we rallied together and are ready.  And it sure is nice to have a clean house in record time! 

The family vote was for chili and cornbread muffins tonight.  Sounds good on a cold and windy day.  

Stay warm!  At least in your hearts...