Friday, May 29, 2009

Five Word Friday

Because I enjoyed last weeks 5 Word Friday I thought I would do it again this week.

Describe in Five Words what you cannot live without (person, place, thing).
  1. God - everytime I try to do anything without Him, I fall flat on my face.

  2. My family - while I am loving being completely by myself (for the first time in months), I am glad that it won't last forever.

  3. The written word - as much as I enjoy tv, I connect much more deeply with the written word. I am more likely to cry over a story I read than one I watch, more likely to remember what I have read than heard. When I have free time, if I am not reading, I am writing.

  4. My church - I love the people, how much I have grown there, etc.

  5. Air conditioning - While it isn't completely true that I can't live without it, I am much more pleasant to be around when I am not melting. If we didn't have AC long term, I might lose my family (see #2)

That's it for this week but check out From the Desk of a Princess for more Five Word Fridays.

7 Quick Takes

It is that time again.

Ok I am a bit late but anyway . . .

  1. I got my free bag from Earthbound farms. It is this strange material that is made from recycled plastic bottles that feels like a weird fabric. I wouldn't have thought they could get that close to fabric feeling with the plastic bottles, although I wouldn't want to wear it.

  2. We went to pick blueberries this morning. I love fresh blueberries. I talked with the owners and they were saying this years crop is going to be much smaller. We had a late frost and it wiped out 60% of their crop. The kids were so excited, they had started asking when we could pick blueberries back in March.
    Daisy busily picking blueberries.

    Junior . . . being Junior. He picked enough to cover the bottom of the bucket and then his feet hurt. And it was hot. And . . . .

  3. Picking blueberries with the kids is like following a butterfly ppicking blueberries. You get a couple here, a few there, go to the end of the row and pick a couple more . . . .

    The problem is, some of the best berries are missed this way - that and it is annoying to mom.

    I wonder how often we do that in life. As we walk by, grab this benefit, that perk, this pick-me-up and completely pass by the deeper blessings.

    Or how often we rush through quiet time to get on to the other things on our list and miss the still small voice.

    Or . . . you get the idea.

  4. Junior hates crafts. Hates them, hates them, hates them. He has been known to have the girls in his class color his pictures for him.

    But he made this necklace for me of Mothers Day. He told me today that he chose a heart because he loves me and a "diamond" because he will love me forever.

    My heart just melted in a big old puddle, and I proudly wore that necklace the rest of the day, even in public.

  5. Speaking of Mothers Day, I can now show off what I did for Mothers day gifts, since my mother and grandmother finally got them. Two weeks late. That will be in another post to come.

  6. We watched the space station fly over tonight. I took pictures but . . . they look like I left the lens cap on. I didn't, but thats what it looks like.

    It is amazing to see something that huge and that far away and it just looks like an overgrown star. It also moves pretty quickly by - it crossed the sky in 3 minutes.

    If you want to see when/if it is going to be going by you, look here. I like the "Sighting Opportunities by city" on the left better than the thing in the middle.

  7. I finally uploaded my pictures from my phone - I have got to find an easier way - so I will leave you with some pictures of the kids at Relay for Life.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sometimes I wish they weren't so honest

I got a new swimsuit yesterday that I had ordered off of Lands End website. I had seen on Fiddledeedee about the great prices on Lands End "overstocks."

Needing a swimsuit at the beach, I quickly looked around town to see if I could find anything that I liked.

Not so much. In fact, the best I could find was "this isn't horrible."

So, I took a chance on mail ordering a swimsuit and it arrived yesterday. It does flatter my top half (which is better than any of the local suits) but the bottom half . . . let's just say I will be in shorts.

Junior, ever the flatterer, told me "Mommy, I like your new swimming suit. It makes your tummy not look as fat as it really is."

thanks for that.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

top 10 things I have learned or been reminded of

I was looking around and found Amanda's blog with a top 10 list. I thought it sounded fun so here is my Top 10 things I have learned or been reminded of recently.

  1. That old tv show, Land of the Lost was on yesterday. Have you seen it recently? It is really pretty funny how bad it is. In fairness, it was a childrens show and so probably had a tiny budget, but the "special effects" are pretty laughable.

  2. We went to a birthday party on saturday and I was reminded that barbeque shrimp is amazingly good. OH MY STARS! I had forgotten how good.

  3. We have the upcoming trip and some of us are more serious about preparing than others.

    I am trying not to laugh at Junior, in preparation for the beach he is wearing a diving mask and flippers - with his pajammas.

  4. I learned that I put-off simple things too long. My hubby has a pair of shorts that are like new, except the missing button. It took about a year and 5 minutes to sew the button on.

  5. I just got internet access on my phone because we are going to be going on this trip and sometimes it is convenient to be able to look up stuff while in an unfamiliar place. I haven't gotten it before because . . . I am cheap thrifty. Ok, I am cheap. Anyway, that is really pretty fun. I was afraid of that. It would have been nice if I hated having it on the phone.

  6. I learned that I can be very clever in typing up a recipe that I love but then not so smart when I forget to put the amounts of two of the key ingredients. I then had to call someone else to find out how much is needed so I could send the grocery list to someone.

  7. I learned that hubby is back on shift while one of his coworkers has surgery. So it could be a month of two whole waiting for him to recover. I hate shift work.

  8. I learned that size does matter in crocheting (and probably knitting too). I made a grocery bag that is now the size of a beach bag because I used the wrong hook. It is supposed to be 19 inches wide and turned out to be 30 inches. Oops.

  9. I learned how a mother can publicly give control over to her daughter just because she doesn't want to make a scene. Rather than say no and "we will talk about this later," the mom mentioned changing the rules of the group as a way to force her daughter to mind.

  10. I have come to realize how much restraint my mother had with some of my friendships. It is so difficult watching your child be friends with someone who manipulates or lies or ______. One of the neighbor girls will get mad, and stomp off home. Daisy, being a peacekeeper, is really bothered by this behavior and I am left wondering do I bite my tongue or tell her she is being manipulated.

    Any thoughts?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

It is almost that season!

So what season is coming? Well most of you in the northern half of the world call it summer.

Those of us on the Gulf Coast call it hurricane season.

It officially starts June 1st but might as well start to prepare now.

I am not talking about going nuts. Don't stock up now on ice. But maybe pick up a few extra cans of ravioli or beans, stuff you can handle cold if you have no power. If you pick up some here and there, then you won't need to grab as much when a hurricane is barreling your way and the stores are empty.

More importantly learn how to cook now.

Yes, you probably already know how to use the microwave. I am talking about cooking without power.

Can you make your morning cup of coffee without power? You can either get a camp percolator that you can heat on your grill or you can get those coffee bag singles (like tea bags) and just heat the water on the grill.

Really, with practice you should be able to cook just about everything outside and the time to practice is not when your area of the state is out of power for a week or more.

Trust me, when it is 90 degrees in the shade you can't think well enough to plan out a meal and how you are going to cook it. You will be grateful for all the preplanning.

Also remember that opening the fridge or the cooler shortens the life of the food inside when you don't have power. Hamburgers may sound good but opening up the fridge to get the ketchup, mustard and mayo as well as the meat may cause you to lose everything else in the fridge.

As a side note, we live almost 170 miles from the coast so evacuation isn't an issue.

Here just for reference is our Hurricane checklist for when one is expected - remember do the shopping well in advance:

We do not have a generator so for us "no power" is no power.

Our Hurricane List

(in no particular order)

  • Fill containers with water (now adding filling at least 1 cooler with ice) we haven't lost water yet but why run the risk
  • Fill propane tanks for the grill
  • Plug in corded phone (cordless phones do not work with no power)
  • Make sure there is plenty of food for the animals
  • Freeze stuff like milk, cheese ect because it will last longer if the power is out
  • Top off gas tanks (don't want to have to wait in line, and prices may go up)
  • Print out an easy to read county map so when on the radio we hear the eye is over _____ county we know how far that is from us (easy-to-read because of the power outage)
  • Plenty of canned food, easy to eat stuff ie. peanut butter sandwiches. On the other hand, only get stuff that your family will eat anyway. If the hurricane doesn't come, you don't want to be left with 20 cans of tuna when your family hates tuna.
  • Bottled water, both the drink bottles and gallon bottles. If you remove some of the water from the gallon bottles and freeze, they will help keep fridge and freezer cold longer.
  • Gather flashlights, and know where replacement batteries are. Gather oil lamps and fill them all. Get matches or lighters and put them where you can find them (up out of kids reach if you have small children).
  • Find a portable radio to listen to the reports, and extra batteries. A hand crank radio/ flashlight like this one is very handy
  • An inverter (one of those things you plug into the cig lighter and then can plug in a normal plug like this) allowed us to recharge the DVD's as well as plug in the router so we could access the internet and weather radar using the laptop.
  • Fully charge cell phones, and anything else that uses batteries.
  • A week (or more) supply of any med you take regularly

This is by no means a complete list, I am sure I have forgotten something.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Five Word Friday

I am participating in something new for me, Five word Friday, and its five words on a specific topic.

The topic for this week is "So, in five words, describe what makes your summer, well, summer? "

1. Ice cream, especially homemade. I love homemade ice cream. I wish it wasn't such a pain in the neck to make, we would eat it much more often.

2. Popsicles, although I only like cherry and, in a pinch, grape. Last year I made some with yogurt and fruit, oh my goodness those were good. And healthier.

3. Snocones, ok I promise I will try to think of one not food related, but this is the deep south. Frozen summer foods are vital.

4. Hurricane season, the past few years, it has meant getting prepared for hurricane season. Which means stocking up on canned food, water, batteries, lamp oil. Just in case.

5. fresh tomatoes off the vine no more food grilled corn on the cob no more food! Oh I know, listening to kids run through the sprinkler and other fun outdoor summer stuff.

Ha! I did come up with one that wasn't food.

The difficulty, is that it is so hot here that we don't do as much outdoors as when I was a kid. And the kids nowadays park themselves inside with their video games from sun up to sun down.

But check out From the Desk of a Princess for more Five Word Fridays.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

swish pbththpb swish bang

Do you know what is more annoying than a five-year old boy with a bag of balloons?

Neither do I.

As if the blowing up and letting go to watch them fly around the room (while listening to the pbthpbth) wasn't bad enough, he kept accidentally popping them.

Four of them in 2 hours.

I have to give him some credit, he didn't stretch the mouth out (like you are making it smile) so that it would squeal.

Sadly, I don't know where the bag of balloons is so I get to listen to it again tomorrow.

Yay, goodie!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A buncha nothings

First a scary event. One of the little neighbor girls was missing this evening.

Her brothers had come to the door asking if she was here because she and Daisy have played together. Since it was just barely dark, we didn't think much of it. But when another set of neighbors came to the door, we got out the flashlights and walked around the neighborhood.

We live outside of town in a small subdivision, people are generally quiet and keep to themselves. I honestly meet most of my neighbors right after a hurricane.

But there were flashlights everywhere.


People calling out for a little girl (I think she is 8) and some of them didn't even know her.

She was found at another friends house - where she had apparently run away - but it was good to see the neighbors pull together.


I have finished the major part of my mother day gifts.

Yes, I know it is past Mothers' day but I had issues. I will be happy to explain those issues once I can do so without spoiling the surprise.

First I have to mail them though.


I had a birthday on Friday.

I am . . . a couple of years younger than you.

Unless you are old, and then I am way younger than you.

But I celebrated by working on Mothers' Day presents having a relaxing day and getting further behind on my blog reading.

Spring tends to wear me out, with all the pollen in the air and doing garden work and other stuff. So I am working on it.


Daisy had her piano recital on Sunday and it went really well. She made a couple of mistakes but I think only Daisy, her teacher and I realized exactly where she had problems.


Junior was supposed to have a belt ceremony on Thursday but they canceled it, thank goodness. The gym where it was to be held had it's air conditioner break, and in east Texas, a gym with no AC is not able to support life.

So he had it today during class.

He actually volunteered to go 2nd with his forms - he never volunteers. And the 2 other kids from his class who normally volunteer immediately, didn't at all. They had to be called on to do their form.

So he did well. He is now a yellow belt with a cheetah patch.


I am really enjoying both knitting and crocheting.

I like knitting because it keeps my projects straighter, it is harder for me to mess up.

Crocheting is nice though because it seems like I can whip a project out faster, although it may not look like it is supposed to.

For a dishcloth or grocery bag, it doesn't seem to matter if it is sort-of lopsided.

I have finally somewhat gotten to where I enjoy the process, and like seeing how it will go together, all that sort of stuff. I used to just look at the process as a necessary evil to get to the end. you mean this project is going to take more than 15 minutes!

I did a bag that I love, love, love! It is this wide weave that, when empty, looks kind of like a tangle of yarn. But as you add stuff to it, it stretches. and stretches. and stretches. And as it stretches you can see a loose lace pattern.

I took it to Relay and the kids filled it up with all the junk they got (2 inflatable guitars, some balloons, some balls) plus my stuff and there was still more room in it.

It would make a great grocery bag for the large stuff (toilet paper, bread, etc) but with the heavy stuff, I want to keep packing it in until it doesn't fit. Which could be really heavy.

Daisy is learning knitting, but she isn't really enjoying it yet. She gets bored because it is something-she-does-while-she-could-be-doing-something-way-more-fun.

With a looooooooong car trip in our near future, I am thinking she might begin to see it as something-she-can-do-instead-of-being-bored-out-of-her-skull.


Saturday, May 9, 2009

Oh what a night!

My feet hurt but it was worth it.

We had our Relay for Life last night and it was . . . amazing.

The turn out was fantastic, over 80 teams and almost 900 registered participant - not counting those who weren't registered. The weather was nice - well hot and muggy but this is east Texas.

My family came up for "a little while" and ended up staying almost 6 hours. Daisy stuck it out all night with me - she was a bit zombie-ish when we left.

They had a luminary ceremony where they lit luminaries in honor of cancer survivors or in memory of a loved one. All the lights were turned out and all you could see were the luminaries.

The whole event was fun and amazing. And productive! Our team raised $1350 for cancer research, and since most of us hadn't done Relay before, we didn't do a whole lot of fundraising.

I still have a lot to process (and am still a bit sleep deprived) so there may be more on this later.

Have a good weekend!

Friday, May 8, 2009

7 quick takes - the decidedly odd edition

1. Tomorrow is our Relay for Life and I am so excited to be participating. The difficult part has been the fund raising, because I hate, hate, hate to ask for money. I really would prefer to have a shirt that says "I am raising money for Relay for Life. Please Donate" and then people could ignore it if they wanted but would also know they could donate.

Because I hate to ask for money, I am a bit short of what I am supposed to raise so I have got to cover it. It isn't the money that bothers me as much as it is knowing that if I wasn't such a horribly shy person, it wouldn't be an issue. I am mostly just mad at myself.

2. The walking isn't going to be a problem, thank goodness. I was afraid it might be.

I did a pretty stupid thing. Since it is nearly summer and I haven't come close to my weight goals, I thought I would give my weight loss a little kick in the pants.

I went and got Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred. Otherwise known as torture in a box.

I did a partial effort for day 1 - even quit 5 minutes early - to avoid being completely sore. It really wasn't that bad, I was a bit sore but not what I expected.

So day 2 I did the whole workout and put a bit more effort into it. Within hours, I lost the ability to walk without pain. And I am not talking about some minor soreness, I mean the thought of having to go to the bathroom would nearly bring me to tears because I would have to stand up, walk to the bathroom, sit down, stand up and walk back to the living room and sit down.

I skipped day 3. And day 4. Tomorrow would be day 5 which would be the first day I might be physically able to do another shred day, but I need to be able to walk the Relay.

3. I had a doozy of a headache today. Sometimes taking medicine is like throwing marshmallows at a monster. It is finally better, and most of the narcotic effect has worn off. I still feel pretty bad though.

And not 100% coherant.

4. We made Mother's Day gifts in Team Kids on Wednesday. It was a little Mini-spa kit that included some bath salts made from epsom salts and glycerine.

Team Kids is for kids that are in kindergarten - 6th grade. I can see how some of the K and 1st graders might be tempted to try and taste, but the older kids should have more sense than that.

Should. They finally stopped trying to taste when I told them it would give them diarrhea. Unfortunately I had forgotten how fascinated that age group finds bodily functions. (It is used to unblock constipation, as well as to stop pre-term labor. I think it would also be useful in torturing people because an IV with it hurts)

Now I wonder how many of the kids will give their mom the gift while telling them not to eat the bath salt and why.

The younger kids, I just told them it would give them a tummy ache, which mostly stopped them.

5. Oh! The people at Directv are not very bright. I emailed them a complaint and got back a form letter. Hubby got looking on the internet and found out how to fix the problem. Apparently if you have the DVR set to the wide screen format, it adds the pillars. If you have it set to the square screen, it doesn't and then it works fine.

Now why would they not know this?

6. I received a prize from Teresa at 8 things about me but I haven't taken a picture of it yet, so I will tell you more about it later.

7. I also received a blog award, but . . . I am going to tell you about it later as well.

For now, I need to go to sleep.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Junior's first trip to the urgent care clinic

I have to say, considering I called him death-wish boy, I am really impressed that he made it this far without having to go to the clinic because of an injury. I know some moms of boys who are almost on first name basis with the ER staffs.

We had made it this far without a trip to the dr due to an injury, but had to go last night. So what did he do?

Well, it was a splinter. I can get out most splinters but this one was deep and . . . in a tender area.

He got the splinter in . . . .

Well, the kids have a wooden swing set and there is a ramp going up to the fiberglass slide. For some reason, they like sliding down the ramp.

Although, I don't know if they will do that anymore though.

Because the splinter, it was in one of the cheeks. Of his boohonkus (as he said).

Poor kid, they did give him an injection of lidocaine (a shot to make the story even better) but ended up using a scalpel to try to get the splinter out.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Thud. Thud. Thud. Thud.





That is the sound of my head banging against the wall.


I hate calling tech support.


We have had Directv for about 8 or 9 years. In general we like Directv.

Except for the fact that they refuse to give us local channels, giving us semi-local channels (about 120 miles from us).

But now we have the wonderful new DVR which is reducing our brand new 32 inch tv into a 26 inch.

Unless you are watching something like Curious George. Then it is a 19 inch.



After spending over 2 headache inducing hours on talking with various tech support, some of whom obviously think I am not smart enough to breathe Is the tv turned on? Do you have the DVR connected to the TV with cables. I finally found someone who knew what I was talking about.



It is a problem with this model of DVR that they may or may not bother to fix.

Just to be clear, we paid extra money to reduce the screen size. And to save you the headache, it is a R22-100.

8 years.