Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Tired and grateful...

Yesterday was my boy's birthday. We had a pretty good day, but at bedtime the poor boy came down with a very sudden stomach thing; vomiting, very low body temp and then had trouble breathing. My husband ran out to buy a new thermometer because we thought for sure my kid's temp couldn't be under 95º, but he felt so cold and that was what ours kept measuring. While daddy was gone, the boy did a weird gasping, not able to breathe thing that seemed to last forever so I called 911.

My husband arrived home about the same time as the police and ambulance and exactly at the moment my son threw up all down my back. But then his breathing regulated. So he was either choking or having an asthma attack but all that ended up taking a backseat to the concern over his inability to stop throwing up. They recommended taking him to the hospital, (but we drove, he wasn't ambulance ride sick at that point), and so we spent the evening in the place where he was born, but in less fun circumstances. But the good news is in both cases we got to bring him home :) From what it sounds like the whole darn town has the same stomach virus and it is pretty vicious.

Today we are exhausted, mellow and above all, grateful. Appropriate for Thanksgiving I suppose. I am grateful for people so inspired to become policemen and paramedics and ER staff. I know I couldn't do those jobs, but I sure feel comfort that others can and thrive at it. I am grateful I have my family around me, and what kind and good folk they are. I am happy that for once I am not freaking about cooking Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow. Usually I work myself into a tizzy and my husband always says to relax, no one wants me to be Martha Stewart, they just want some turkey and mashed potatoes. So that is what we are having, and I am relaxed. Nothing like an ER visit for a healthy dose of perspective.

I have birthday party pics I will share later when I have the energy to mess with the camera. We had a fun "Jedi" themed birthday party on Sunday for my big five year old. I'm sure it will be after the holiday that I get around to all that. Until then wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Same Girl, Same Hat... New Attitude

December 2006

A few days ago.

To be fair though, see her dark circles? She's fighting a cold in this picture, so that's probably to blame for the snarky little 'tude she was pulling on me that day. Still, it is unsettling to catch a teenish look on a seven year old face. Eek!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I guess winter is here...

I actually like snow.

The contrast of bright white and dark trees.

The contrast of sparkling day and dark clear night with stars.

I am always optimistic at the beginning of winter. I love layers of clothing. The fresh smell of the air. Piling on blankets at night. Holiday music. Slippers...


Oh, and baking. Winter baking is the best. Warming the house a bit while creating something yummy is such a double bonus. Like these...

I finally found the perfect blueberry muffin recipe and I tweaked it a bit to make it even more blueberryish. Mmmm... muffins.
I love these so much I am going to include the recipe.

Winter Morning Blueberry Muffins
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup oil (I used grapeseed)
1 egg
milk to round out a cup
2 cups frozen blueberries mostly thawed and tossed in flour
cinnamon and sugar

Preheat oven to 400º and grease muffin pan.

Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Combine oil in a measuring cup with the egg and fill the cup the rest of the way with milk. Mix wet ingredients. Mix wet ingredients with dry, but do not overmix. Fold in the blueberries. Fill muffin pan.

Bake for 20 minutes or until done. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon while still warm. Makes 12 regular sized muffins.

Yes, I know these aren't gluten free. I abandoned the gluten free diet not long after the crazy flooding this summer. It seemed to be better for us, and know I can't ignore it much longer. But I will be waiting until after the holidays, so until then we will eat muffins :)

Monday, November 17, 2008


I have been drowning in computer stuff and feeling all nearsighted and cranky. Actually, that isn't totally true. I am super happy and had an amazing birthday weekend. But I am tired from the travel, from working extra hours at the paper and from immersing every spare moment into solving my personal computer issues.

The good news is I went to Best Buy this weekend to buy the printer I have been eyeing for months since it was on sale there (my old one is currently wheezing out a long, ink-belching death), and my husband ended up buying me a (mostly) new computer! We were planning to expand our computer family but not until summer. So this is about six months ahead of 'our plan' because we found an iMac for $400 off. Sort of a 'surprise' computer conception. It was a return from a customer who decided she hated mac computers. (GASP!) And since Macs are hard to find at a discount and this one still had the full warranty... it was too good to pass up.

And in a couple weeks it will be a 'guilt-free' impromptu purchase because I accepted full time work for a few weeks at the local paper which will put back the money we spent from our savings. I hate spending anything going into the winter. But that paycheck will pad the piggy again.

The bad news is, our local geek squad was asking ME questions about Macs so I have had to gut it myself to make it all shiny new like it should be. But that got me an extra $100 off, so I was willing to do a little legwork for that. It was on display for about two weeks and some random customer had put in an (unknown) administrative password that was such a PAIN to work around. Holy brain ache batman. But I did it! Yay! And it is awesome to have two computers again in our screen lovin' family.

Now I need to figure out how to transfer my graphics software to this computer. Any ideas? It was purchased as a download, no cds and you can't install without the serial numbers, which I have but are attached to my old computer. I am thinking it will be something I have to contact Adobe about to prove I am not pirating it or something. But that can wait for another day. My brain is done thinking for tonight. Time for chocolate and vampire shows.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans Day

My grandfather and grandmother on their wedding day right before he shipped out during WWII.

Thank you to all who are serving and have served in our military. And thank you to your families that serve with you in their own ways.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Taking pictures is even better than counting to 10...

My kids are older and this is so fun for a mom who likes to 'spread the wealth' when it comes to chores and such. :)

Of course, asking kids to do an 'adult' task, means running the risk of things not turning out as perfectly as desired. But still, it beats me bending over to paint those bottom shelves, right?

Or not.

At first the mess seemed huge, but after I got out the camera I realized the drama level was actually pretty small. In fact, almost not dramatic enough to blog. So after I caught myself wishing it looked a little worse, I realized that having the kids paint part of the shelves was an awesome idea. They should be doing the 'real' stuff all the time. People don't magically learn life skills as soon as they turn 18.

I am actually the one who has been learning the most through this house project. I am learning to let go of control, breathe instead of hold my breath when there is clutter present, enjoy the process as much as the outcome. Though I have to admit, now that my house almost put back together, it is easier to feel sunny and full of advice. And my advice today is ... Give the little ones a paint brush and WHEN they make a mess, take pictures instead of getting upset. It stays fun that way. Then grab some rags and let them help clean up. Then eat chocolate, because well, that helps too.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Love. This.

Welcome to my lab... (insert spooky laughter here)

My thrifty finds. A cutlery organizer on clearance for 4.00 used as a knick knack shelf and little salt shakers on clearance for $4.70 for....

A little help from my unkempt children...

GLITTER! The holidays are coming up after all... :)

Looks sort of like a crafty laboratory doesn't it? I like stuff organized but easy to reach and remember.

I have been on an organizing rampage. No room left unharmed. I did a good job in the deconstruction phase, whew it was a mess. Now finally, things are coming together, but sloooooowly. When I was a kid and my mom wanted me to clean my room, I used to dump everything in a huge pile in the middle of the floor and then before I could put it all away I would restructure the layout, move furniture, change the purpose of my life, and then put it all back. I still use this technique, (if chaotic insanity is in fact a 'technique'), and it is harder to accomplish with kids around. It is like I am swimming through jello. But we are all sort of having fun and slowing inching forward. I am starting to see the gleaming, shiny new bits of organized life my family will enjoy this winter. Yay, craft laboratory!

My daughter took this pic of me washing my old calligraphy pens and nibs. See... serious sorting and cleaning.

And here are a couple she took of herself... I didn't know she did it until I downloaded the pictures tonight. How cute is she?

I think she is thinking about all that glitter...

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Just more cute kid crafts...


Every Halloween a co-worker gifts my children with a huge bag of Halloween toys and treats. 'Aunt Judy' is the goddess of Halloween. I bet you wish you knew the goddess of Halloween. She decorates every single room in her home, covering walls, ceilings, EVERYTHING with the most amazing Halloween decor. It's truly one of the coolest things ever. They even have a movie projector showing Rocky Horror Picture show during her annual Halloween party. It fits the scene perfectly.

Words can't describe this house, so I meant to take pictures this year the party. But I started drinking these tasty little beverages called Mike's Hard Lemonade and the only picture I actually took was of Aunt Judy in her Crazy Cat Lady outfit. And if I posted that Aunt Judy would kick my ass and I would be banned from the Halloween holy land.

Everyone should have an Aunt Judy with a Halloween house. She rocks. This mask was in the bag and my girl couldn't wait to decorate it. Yay glue! So instead of the coolest halloween pictures ever, I offer you another cute kid craft. Hey, I work with what I have :)

A Halloween Post... late but still cute

The gang. Yes, my son in his Anakin mask is a bit off putting.

My nephew, the sheriff. He talks to me on the phone a lot. He calls me his 'very best friend'. Sigh... He is my little sweetheart.

My baby nephew. Notice his gorgeous shiner. He's a climber and heart attack giver. He talks to me on the phone too. I don't know exactly what he says but I know hear the word 'stinker-butt' often in our conversations. I am pretty sure he's talking about his mommy. This kid was READY for Halloween.

My daughter, Asohka, the jedi-padwan of Anakin in the new Clone Wars. I know it is hard to believe, but not one person knew this where we trick or treated. The closest guess was Jar-Jar Binks.

My Jedi. It was all about getting to carry around light sabers in public of course.


They get it from their father.

Seriously. They stopped trick-or-treating for a small battle.

The battles were even more fun in the dark.

Candy. Costumes. Battles. Halloween should be a quarterly holiday. Any holiday where you walk around in costume and strangers give you candy is brilliant. Much better than cooking, cooking, cooking, small talk, eating until pain sets in, dishes, dishes, dishes. I think since the weather is so darn awesome this year we should skip Thanksgiving and redo Halloween.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I Voted!!!

When I went to vote someone told me that the number of people who have voted from our precinct was already more than had voted in the last three elections. I was number 261. That is good for this year, bad for past years. I always vote, but have never been so excited to as I have been this year.

I am excited, but I am currently purposely staying away from the news until real results start to flow in.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Sorry about the sparse posts...

I am keeping busy so I don't freak about the election.

VOTE! Tomorrow. Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote.

I want every person eligible to vote, to do so. I want the majority to pick the next president, so whether my guy wins or loses, at least I will know that the majority picked. That is how the country is supposed to work. VOTE.

Regular posts will resume after my heartbeat is back to a normal pace.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Braaaains... Happy Halloweekend!

My husband and I went to a Halloween party tonight. We rocked the zombie look. I had some cool fake piercings that I had already taken off before I took these pictures. I could never actually pierce anything on my face, but they did look pretty interesting. All in all, a very fun night!! A very fun weekend, after the trick or treat festivities yesterday. I'll upload some more Halloween pictures tomorrow after I have slept off the festivities.

Sigh... I love Halloween. Best. Holiday. Ever.