Monday, September 29, 2008

Prepare to be annoyed...

Maybe just a little. I had this weekend off school and so I hauled my bootie to the high school game. Between my running of the children I caught most of the sophomore game and three quarters of the varsity game. I love my kids' school. It is my Alma matter and the reason we bought our house where we did. Some of the teachers I had are still there...some of the kids I went to school with are now teachers there. And typically...we have great sports teams. When I was there it was basketball and volleyball, especially the lady huskies. For the past few years however it has been the ladies softball team and the football teams that have really shown! This year...our football team is in first place in the conference. A trip downstate is not out of the question this year :) Our team is currently undefeated and since I was off school on Friday...the hubby and I made an effort to get there... I went early to the Sophomore game so I could watch my friend Shannon's daughter Devin perform at half time on the dance team.... Devin also happens to be my big girl's BFF since 1st grade. They are two peas for sure!
So...sadly, you may be annoyed with my continual posts regarding the season. Put it this way....last week they beat the other #1 team 48 - 28. This week, we beat Jefferson and I believe the score was 55 - 10 Varsity and 48 - 6 JV. Definitely a fun game...definitely packed! Fans were parked way out to to street. Amazing.
I was also so happy to see the marching band. They did a terrific job and looked quite spiffy in their uniforms. In two years my precious one will be out there performing *sigh*
Between games hubby and I enjoyed dinner at Chili's....just the two of us :) The sunset was a sight to behold... What a great day.




The next morning I was up to see the sunrise...as the big girl headed to a college visit to UW Platte ville. She loved the school, but didn't think dairy farming was for her :)
I attended a baby shower that afternoon Gotta love all that pink!


Sunday we headed out to the apple orchard to kick off fall with half the city! We went on the wagon ride, ate caramel apples and baked potatoes, shopped in the new store and generally had a great time...Aubrey really enjoyed riding the ponies...so much so that she cried and cried when her turn was over! So.... she rode again! And this time...no tears when she was done! We tried to get her to pose for our annual Apple Orchard picture, but no such luck!
We headed home so I could give Aubrey her very first hair cut :) It was super sweet for me, since I gave her mommie her very first hair cut when she was a baby...When she was done, she took some time to model these... I had so much fun this weekend! I even cleaned a bit...did some laundry, took a nap and watched Y&R...actually, I'm only two weeks behind now! Hope your weekend was great too!

Friday, September 26, 2008

WHO SAID THE END WAS OK?!?

Last night I got to watch a bit of prime time TV....ER to be exact. Now...I didn't watch last weeks episode as it is still on the TIVO although my children did announce..."Hey! Be sure to watch this dumb ER, now IT'S taking up space on the TIVO!" (MY TIVO lest I remind you!) Anyway, if you watched it, I clearly had no idea why so many people were hurt, dying etc...but I really had no idea that Dr. Pratt was dying...really? Who said that was ok? I cried the entire show and so did puddles my husband. And then AND THEN I tell you, at the end of the show they announce that it is the final season and that Abby will be leaving next week. Let me ask you...WHO SAID THE END WAS OK?!?

Now...it does appear that there will be some good reminiscing shows coming up, and I'll be sure to enjoy those...It will be odd granted, that ER won't be on anymore...I've watched it since the beginning. I don't deal well with change you know!

What a difference a year makes!

I am in awe of the changes in my children over the past year as evidenced by their newly arrived school pictures...

My precious one has definitely morphed into a jr. high gal with a new found aire of confidence...My mom commented the other day how she couldn't believe how much and how quickly her braces have changed the shape of her face...amazing


My big girl has had quite the transformation as well. I am going to have to search the archives at home to find my 9th and 10th grade pictures because that was by far my most amazing changes as well. Stephanie hates last year's picture so I'm sure she'll be less than pleased that I posted it again ;)



And then there's this boy...my sonshine...a little older, a little more confident, and really the major difference...he had to shave before pictures this year...AAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

What is most amazing about the school pictures this year...is that they are already in the mail to my loved ones! Yes, you'll actually get a copy this year :)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

How very exciting!

It is hard for me to believe that my baby girl is getting so old. You know, the one I affectionately call my 'big girl' on this ole blog? Yes, in my mind I often see some of her precious faces as an infant and toddler and marvel at the love a mother feels when she has her first child. My Stephanie definitely stole my heart. We share our middle name...Joy. And truly-- she has been such a joy to raise. As I watch her grow I continue to marvel at her amazing talent, wit, intelligence, charm, and grace. Last night we placed an order for this... Her class ring. As the old adage goes, it seems like just yesterday that I ordered my ring and I remember all of the excitement that went with that...wearing the plastic sizing ring until your real ring comes, making a decision that was all mine, picking out just the right stone, inscription, sides etc....and then the day they arrive! The rings are handed out in the cafeteria during lunch. There wasn't too much eating going on that day! Everyone was too busy looking at everyone's ring. What did you get? What did you get? Ooooh so pretty!

My big girl picked that beauty above. She wasn't totally sold on the choice but she had it narrowed down to two. When we got there, they had the actual ring she wanted in her size. The second she tried it on...she was sold! Hers will say Harlem on one side and 2011 on the other side. Inside the ring she had Stephanie Joy engraved. And of course the stone...Amethyst...purple...her favorite color for as long as I can remember! Her ring should be in right around Thanksgiving. Her response was "Great! I can show it to everyone during the holidays!"

It's funny, when she was born we did the math and figured that she would graduate in 2011. Back in 1992 that seemed like a world away and I couldn't even imagine a year starting with 20! Now here it is just a few short years away...and now my big girl will have a keepsake from her high school years :)

What a terrific night! What a terrific memory...



Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Candi...check this out!

This post is for Candi...the biggest Hello Kitty fan of all time. Hey Candi...I was just wondering if you have this yet? How stinkin cute is that!?!

1 - 10

Got nuthin today...nuthin...so I decided to bloglift this from Jen, who blog lifted it herself...ah yes...the fine art of bloglifting :)

10 Whimsical Thoughts about Me

1. Thinker or Doer? Ummmmm, both. Unfortunately my doer can never catch up with my thinker. Really, if the todo list was ever complete, I wouldn't know how to act.

2. Have you ever performed in public? Did you like it? Yes, I performed in public a lot and I loved it. I performed in dance recitals, piano recitals, twirling competitions and with the twirling team in high school. I would suggest that the baton team was my favorite. And yes I liked it a lot. Perhaps that is where the love of watching my children perform has come from...

3. Do you have any tattoos? Do you want one? No and positively no. Here's the thing with Tattoos. I have seen perhaps 2 or 3 that I actually thought were pretty, but then I picture them on an 80 year old wrinkly woman and the desire quickly passes. There is really no desire to get one...none. Let me see poke needles with ink into my skin. Definitely no.

4. What is your favorite museum? I would have to vote for the Milwaukee Public Museum. They have and IMAX theater there and an amazing butterfly museum. When we were there last my son was amazed that so many huge and beautiful butterflies would fly right over and land on him!

5. Are you good at keeping secrets? Does it make you uncomfortable to be asked to keep one? What kind of secrets? Like she's dying and let's not tell her secret? or a surprise birthday party? I'd for sure have to say that I'm not very good at keeping secrets. Planning any kind of a surprise is really hard for me, but thank goodness I have the hubby to blab to cuz he is really good at keeping secrets ;) I guess since I'm not very good at keeping them, not too many people share secrets with me...thereby giving me no reason to be uncomfortable.

6. Can you play any musical instruments? What do you wish you knew how to play? I can play the flute. I learned to play in school and when my daughter started playing I was amazed that I can still play quite well. I have always wished to play the piano and the 12 string guitar. I took piano lessons for a short time as a child and for a time as an adult, but it just never really sunk in. The whole base clef and left hand just doesn't work for me. Perhaps I could be a one handed piano player? The 12 string guitar I've been in love with since church camp days. I had an amazing camp counselor there who would play her 12 string guitar at night and it was so beautiful.

7. Whose voice do you find soothing? Definitely God's. When I am still enough to hear it. As for Earthly folks...my mom's as long as she's not mad! my husband's, and my kid's.

8. Do you sleep on the left or the right? Well, first you'd have to tell me which way your facing. If you're standing at the foot of the bed I sleep on the left. Strangely when I'm at a hotel I sleep on the right. Hmmmmmm.

9. Other people's biggest misconception about me? Not sure here. I guess you'd have to ask other people. I do know that some people who have worked for me have been 'afraid' of me, which I think is so comical. REALLY? Afraid? Be afraid....be VERY afraid! NOT!

10. Do you have anyone's autograph? Why yes...yes I do, and thanks for asking! I am the proud owner of autographs of Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney. The Tim autograph my daughter got at the very first concert I took her to. Tim sure did pull her up on the stage where she sat at his feet while he sang 3 songs AND gave her his autograph! I had to tell her that it's only down hill from here! Don't plan on the stage seat for every concert! The Kenny Chesney one came on a CD I bought on line. Sad but true. With over 10 KC concerts under my belt, still no autograph :(

Monday, September 22, 2008

Who cut the cheese?

Who knew Wisconsin was so crazy about cheese? It all started out innocently enough...we had planned to drive into Monroe (where my FIL is buried) to visit the cemetery and stop to have our traditional Cheese Sandwich at Bomgartners. We knew we were in trouble when every street was lined with cars and people were walking from blocks away to the downtown of this quiet quaint Wisconsin Town. We decided for a moment to brave the crowds and see if we could gain access to Bomgartners. We started walking by lots of these... We stopped for a minute to visit with Elvis...
We admired this for a moment...
to keep one's tushy warm in the 80 degree heat...and finally made it to Bomgartners...along with 100 of our closest friends and a very loud polka band. My kids love Bomgartners cuz it's the only place you can shoot dollar bills and stick them to the ceiling with a tack!
There is a beautiful mural paying homage to the rolling hills of green county...
We made the executive decision to forego Bombartners this time since it was standing room only. And oddly enough I saw two people I work with there...small world. Anyway, most other restaurants that were not down town were closed in honor of the cheese fest...(seriously) so we quickly stopped to grab a quick ride on the.... Could someone please remind me next time that Tilt-A-Whirls make me seriously sick and have for about the past 20 years. Why do I have such a hard time remembering that until it's too late?After I got off the ride I told my husband, please remind me to never ride that again...it always makes me sick. He said, "Yeah, that's what you told me last time...and then you sure rode it again!" Live and learn I guess. We got back to the car and cranked on the air full blast to help me overcome the motion sickness and headed to the cemetery...The hubby and I recalled all the obstacles we have overcome in the past 10 years since his death and marveled at how we made it through. My FIL was my husband's employer, confidant, racing buddy, and Dad. It was a very difficult time and at this point, it seems we have overcome and gotten through it. My husband now owns the family business, the racing team has been sold, we've since lost my dad (his other confidant) and somehow managed to survive it all. We decided to head back home to eat...through the rolling hills of Wisconsin...
We decided on eating at Pizza Ranch. Of course we got there at 2:30 and they are closed from 2 - 5 on Sunday....Grrrrrrrr. Finally, we ate at a local diner which was delicious. Really, by that time cardboard would have tasted great since none of us had eaten at all that day...
After we got home...we headed to the mall to scope out homecoming dresses. My daughter picked out the most beautiful, simply darling dress and the price you ask?!? $25 I.kid.you.not. Fabulous! Do I have a picture? Not yet. What's really crazy is I took a picture of all the dresses she tried on, but not the final one that she bought. I know I know...So perhaps tonight I'll get a picture. I was really excited at the price since we still have to buy many accessories. It was a busy fun filled weekend. As my precious one was half asleep in the car last night she summed it all up..."What a fun day."
Until next time...

Friday, September 19, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

After a few weeks hiatus I'm back with Sky Watch Friday: the next generation...picture it...my precious one...out in the front yard, taking this picture while my sonshine is next to her coaching her on her ever important photography skills...So these skywatch friday images are courtesy of Kristina and Brennan...

Be sure to check out other SWF images here...
The more the merrier!
I just had to add...that all my readers should check out these images. Being the beach lover that I am....those take the grand prize for me!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A few giggles from the trenches...

I had this little ditty to share with you from labor day weekend and surely forgot. When we went to visit my brother in Kenosha...my sister had a new car. I said, "I didn't know you got a new car" to which she replied, "I didn't...my car is in the shop being fixed." Hmmmm...to make a long story short...her neighbor was backing out of his garage and was frightened by a spider in his car. He lost control and crashed into her car causing $3500 !!!! worth of damage! Can you believe it? I'm pretty sure that's arachnophobia at it's finest :)

OK, then, those of you that know me well, know that I CAN NOT watch someone fall without laughing hysterically. (Most of my family members now need therapy because of this) Anyway... I was sitting in the middle of this very serious research meeting in Chicago...when one of the RA's got up to refill the water pitcher...one minute she was there, the next minute...flat out on the floor. Because there were tall office chairs along side the table, I didn't see the actual fall...I only saw her disappear. And then...reappear after she gained her composer a bit. Up popped her head..."I'm alright" she said. OMG...how on Earth do I not laugh?!? I had to use the tactic one of my professors taught me to use when dealing with clients who say something hilarious, but it is not appropriate to laugh..I bit my lip...and hard. AND, I didn't laugh. WHEW! Really...this is what I would have rather done...watch this...

Finally, yesterday I had a million...literally, a million things to do. Of course I got home and forgot to drop off my copies to be made for the class I had to teach last night. I hurried and dropped them off, then hurried back home to make dinner quick before going to class. I got out of the car and told my husband, my car stinks...somethings wrong with it, I mean it stinks bad...do you smell that? "Ummm, yes" he said, "that smell would be your brakes...could you perhaps drive slower and use your brakes less?" Oh, I see...point taken....nevermind.

Until next time...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hmmmmmm....

So, the interview went very well yesterday and they scheduled me for a second interview, but here's the thing: Eventually, for this position, I would need to be 'board certified' which also means I'd have to take 5 more classes and complete a 3rd internship. Geeeeeeezzzzz, as I just typed that it caused me to gulp. I for real do not believe I have it in me to take 5 more classes AND complete another internship (although it would be a PAID internship) which would surely make it a whole lot better. So...I have a few weeks until the 2nd interview during which I will continue to ponder this decision. I'm going to check into the classes and see exactly what they entail, and the opportunities that come with being board certified. It does appear that there is a terrible shortage of these folks around and it would also be a 'consultant' type position I could add to my private practice. So...I guess I'll keep an open mind and see what comes of this opportunity.

But HEY!!!! GUESS WHAT?!?! When I was in Chicago yesterday working on a research project, I got written in as a research assistant. Do you know what that means? Of course you don't! What that means is...if we get this grant money, then part of my current internship would be a paid position. (Insert big smiles here) -- I mean for real, I love Social Work, but I am a bit tired of working for free. Being salaried the past 15 years has taught me to not appreciate working for free...since being salaried involves quite a bit of that. One year ago tomorrow I started my last internship. I figure if I would have made the minimum amount, you know, minimum wage...that I haven't made since I was 17...that I would have been paid well over $6000 for the hours I've put in. Now....stop for a moment and imagine the beautiful trip to beach I could get for that! And, I still have 7 more months to continue working for free. Oh wait...did I mention I pay tuition to work for free? So add another $4000 to that price tag. Crazy isn't it?!? So now you see my excitement at the possibility of getting paid...even a little!

Ok, on to a little more lightheartedness. Yesterday in Chicago we ate at the most amazing restaurant in Greek Town...and I just instantly forgot the name! Anyway I had the most amazing meal...grilled shrimp....big shrimp atop lemon and garlic butter angel hair pasta and spinach. It was so delicious. I think I might smell like garlic for days though! The dish also came with pine nuts which I ordered on the side and promptly gave away...ewwwww. The restaurant was so quaint and quiet in the middle of bustling Chicago. It was definitely a very nice ending to a very long day!

Until next time...

Monday, September 15, 2008

Thank God for Cameras...

So, I thought I'd sit down to add my weekend in review via pictures...and as my pictures popped up on the computer I was all...oh yeah! oh yeah! and that! awwww too cute! Anyway...I just love pictures. There are so so so many moments in life that would go unremembered (is too a word!) without pictures. So...here's the weekend in review...


First off Friday and Saturday, I had school...My friend Carlene and I are carpooling and that is terrific; A few more minutes to spend chatting, despite our crazy busy schedules. Meant to take a picture of us, but sure forgot! Saturday, in the midst of the non stop, never ending, flood producing rain...(but I'll quit whining cuz it's nothing compared to Ike) Anyway...I got the mail and found this!! From my friend Catherine...in France...I commented that I would love a set of aqua uno cards...and she sure sent them! Thank you so much Catherine...Stephanie opened them in the car...and Catherine had even wrapped the present in wrapping paper that had French writing on it... We just thought that was the coolest thing ever. Thanks SO much! Ok, now...we have to figure out something cool from the US to send to your kids...let me know if you have anything in mind, ok? So...we got the errands ran and then I had a fabulous nap...I mean fabulous...a rainy Saturday afternoon, what could be better? Saturday night I went out to dinner and a movie with my friends. I cannot recall the last movie I have seen in a theatre and really, I think it was 3 or 4 years ago that we all went out to see the 'Stepford wives' (which was awful) We saw Women this time and I loved it...it wasn't an Earth shattering, best movie of all time type movie, but it was good enough and I really enjoyed myself. We laughed and commiserated with each other and Ms. Shannon and I got to catch up with our crazy Sophomore daughters. We caught up on the doings of all things family and it was terrific.
Sunday morning I finally headed back to church. It was the first visit back for me after Poppy's funeral it was difficult at best. I pretty much cried through the last half of the service, but I was glad to be back. I picked up the last plant from the funeral while I was there (the one that was too large to fit in the car after the funeral) and stopped in the memorial garden to say hello to Poppy. His name has been added to the grave marker. It was a fitting rainy day...
The best part of this day was that I got to spend some time with this precious girl! Can you believe how big she is? She surely has her 2nd birthday coming up and is a toy story fan just like my Brennan. I am now on the search for all things toy story for the baby girl. I gave her one of Brennan's old Toy Story sheets and she was all a dither. Aubrey's Mom and I were talking about Aubrey looking like Stephanie when she was little, which I agree is true...but if you look at this picture...you can definitely tell these girls are related! They could sure be sisters! My kids so love Aubrey and she loves them. I love that they have cousins close that they can love on! My cousins always lived far away so it involved trip planning to see them. My girls especially love taking care of the little ones! Brennan doesn't appreciate babies so much, but he has come to love Aubrey, especially when she is yelling B-E-N-N-A-N!!!! At the top of her lungs! He calmly replies..."yes Aubrey?" To which she has no reply...she just wanted a little attention from her cousin! Finally, I thought I'd share this for your viewing pleasure. For lunch yesterday, I made ravioli, green beans, and garlic bread. Aubrey especially loved the garlic bread!

video

Until next time...

Friday, September 12, 2008

Sportin new duds!

Hey! Yesterday my shipment came from Matt, Liz, & Madeline and the garden of awesome...


I ordered these shirts the very first day they came out...and I was so excited when they came! Just in time for the only day of the week I can wear jeans :) Pardon the glazed over zombie look, but I'm just a bit tired these days ;) Since then, Matt has added a few new shirts I will need to be ordering. Speaking of new shirts... I found this one at Cafe Press.com that I think will be perfect for my mom's husband for Christmas. He is such an accepting person and really focuses on not trying to change his clients but just helping them. (He's a therapist too you know...) So, I thought that shirt would be perfect for him. It's not too early to Christmas shop right?!?
Last night was parent night at my sonshine's and my precious one's school. I met most of the teachers and for a brief moment I thought I might have been at the wrong school. While meeting my son's teachers I heard things like...he's really concerned about his grades and works hard, he comes right in ready to work, I really enjoy him, and various other compliments. I was almost moved to tears. Not really...I knew he had it in him all along! I did tell the assistant principal that I appreciate each year of maturity so much with my boy, that by the time he's 25 he'll be so awesome I probably won't be able to stand him! The VP (Mr. Townsend, not wanna be Palin) said he agreed. So, my son seems to finally be used to his new school and seems to finally have teachers that appreciate him. That does my heart good for sure...Guess what though? Next year he changes to a new school again! Today however, we're going to focus on his current success!
My precious one's teachers of course were all smitten with her. The 'Ruch Girls' reputation as straight A, non trouble maker students had preceded her...one teacher said to me..."My you sure have 3 totally different children" And yes, I am as amazed as she is how different they each are with the same genes and being raised in the same family. I love them each for their uniqueness and differences. Remember those days after you had your first baby and you were wondering if you could ever love another baby as much as the first? Someone shoulda told me how amazing the mama love is...and what an amazing journey being a mama is. To date...it's been the highlight of my life!
My big girl got her audition results for the play, and isn't very pleased...well that's an understatement...is down right foul about the part she got. I encouraged her to try out for a larger part, which she did. And then she ended up getting a small part, so she was a bit less than pleased with me. Bummer. the precious one, and maybe even my sonshine will be trying out for the middle school play next week. Keep your fingers crossed for them. The precious one will also be trying out for 'The Polar Express' children's show at our local college. I'm hoping to be able to take a moment off to watch my budding actor and actresses!
Got school tonight and tomorrow and hopefully the apple orchard if it isn't pouring ;0 Have a great weekend!
Until next time...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Patriot's Day, Happy Birthday, and new opportunities...

First of all...a moment of silence to remember the lives lost on 9.11 and the families that lost their loved ones.





May the Peace and Love of the Father be with you today...




Secondly, Happy Birthday to my friend Carlene...Now...ordinarily there'd be photos, along with sap and crap here for her birthday...but I'm just in a time crunch my faithful readers, and I couldn't let Carlene's birthday go by without a mention. Now, imagine for a moment that inserted here is a picture of Carlene with the DSM-IV on her head, attempting to learn all we need to know through Osmosis. Ah yes, if only there was time to search my 8000 pictures for that photo. Yes, by far the best part of Grad school has been getting to know Carlene. She has such a genuine appreciation for the crazy yet terrific kids we work with. She was a much needed breath of fresh air! AND she loves all things sparkly. That made us nearly soulmates from the beginning! Happy birthday my friend!

Ok, remember those winds of change? They're blowing again and yes, I have my first job interview on Tuesday!!!! PLEASE keep a good thought for me. I won't go into specifics yet, until I know more...but it's a foot in the door leading to the path of my choice. MY choice :) Not anyone elses, not just where the wind takes me, but my choice! There's nothin better in life than choices...I'll tell ya that for sure!

Until next time...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bucket List...

You know the list...things I'd do if only...

I must be hitting the ole mid life crisis, cuz I'm sure wondering if I'll fit it all in and more importantly if I'll be physically able to fit it all in. Yesterday in one of my therapy groups we played wiffle ball and although I did score an awesome grand slam I think by tomorrow I may be experiencing the equivalent of child birth in pain!

One of the things I always say is...as soon as I graduate we are joining the health club. The other day my big girl said...yeah you keep saying that. This week I have been especially focused on the whole 3 years of school thing. That I have virtually missed my daughter's lives from 10 - 13 and from 13 - 16 and my son's life from 12 - 15. Last night after working 14 hours and knowing that I have a 15 hour day today I crashed into bed and fell asleep to the sound of my daughter's and husband laughing at big brother 10 in the family room. I was sad. Sad to be missing one precious moment of their life...knowing there is laundry, homework, cleaning, etc. that needs to be done, and more moments missed. I was always a mom that prided myself by saying...cooking and cleaning can wait til tomorrow cuz babies grow up, we learn to our sorrow.

We often say...after the kids move out, we'll do this...or we'll do that...well today...I'm makin the list...lest I forget...all those hopes I have...

Join a health club. When I met my husband I worked out 4 days a week at the Y....and man did it feel good. I long to be an exercise fiend again...

Live on the beach. 'nuf said...and certainly addressed in enough posts on this ole blog!

Take cake decorating classes. I love to bake and in honor of my late A. Ruth...I want to make cakes as yummy and as beautiful as hers. One of my fondest childhood memories was eating the trimmings off of her fabulous cakes before she decorated them.

Cross Stitch. I used to stitch extensively. Some very beautiful pieces. Of which I have none. I always made them for gifts. It's time to make some for myself.

Crochet. Some warm cozy blankets...no more buying throws for me!

Sew. I'm not sure what...but I used to sew... a lot. I made all my nieces dresses for my wedding, I french hand sewed my daughter's Christening dresses. I love to sew. Perhaps I'll make Christening dresses and sell them on Etsy.

Date my husband. Man I love that guy! And he is so cute! I just want to do fun stuff with him...(keep it clean, it's a family show) -- but mostly I want to travel with him. I hadn't been very many places before I met him... and he has been to every state and a few countries too, so I have definitely learned to love to travel and there are so many places I want to go. (Mostly beaches...I know you're surprised)

Scrapbook.

Build an addition onto my house so I can have a great kitchen.

Work less...much less.

Spend lots of time with my family...kids, nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, mama, mil, brothers, I have a great family.

Take it all in...I just want to slow down enough to soak it all in. I don't want to miss a minute!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Shopping...lots of shopping...

So...really I thought daycare was expensive when they were little...please could someone have warned me about the expense of high school? My big girl is shopping for her class ring...and Oh how I'd like to post a photo here, but you can only do it if you sign in to the site etc...and it won't let me save a photo. Sad...anyway...she has good yet expensive taste (no comments about where she could have possibly gotten that from) and I am so excited. The choices for class rings are SO SO SO SO much better than in my day...and no it really wasn't that long ago...I mean 25 years wasn't that long ago right? I digress...she has it narrowed down to about 6 choices...but is definitely leaning toward one style. We get to see the rings in person in a few weeks, so that will either confirm her choice or maybe she'll see something she likes better.

I so remember the excitement of those days in high school. I still have my ring and wore it probably up until the time Steph was born. (I think that is when it stopped fitting me lol) Immediately following the ring purchase of course we have homecoming. The big girl has already begun spying dresses. Another fun shopping outing :) And...did I mention the week after that is her Sweet 16 birthday? Perhaps we should hold a fund raiser to accommodate the month of October!

Sigh...I find myself sighing a lot lately at the thought of her oldness (is too a word!) -- I still appreciate her everyday...her brilliance, her humor, her love. I'm trying hard to savor these fleeting moments!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

I finally had to leave the room...

Ah yes I remember it well...the good ole' days...pepsi, mac n cheese, atari, and MTV. The real MTV...the one where they played music videos. Remember that? Music videos...hence the term MTV? As in Music Television? Anyway...tonight on MTV the VMA awards are on... OK, let me just mention, if she was a client, yes, perhaps I could help Brittney Spears, but as a, um, a, well, what do you call her? Well, I'm not sure, but as a personality...not so much...so I got through her winning the first award...I then watched some great performances by Rhianna, and of course my new favorite song from the Jonas Brothers...insert screams of hysteria here from my daughters...but then Lil wayne came out and I could take it no more...My biggest, worst, largest, most annoying pet peeve is this... Excuse me sir lil wayne, but would it trouble you too much to PULL UP YOUR PANTS!!! And, if at all possible quit trying to hold your pants up by holding on to your penis on national television. REALLY!!??!! I cannot tolerate it. As I mentioned before in my beach photos...I do not understand the whole wear your pants below your butt thing. And then...after I left the room and I thought I'd be ok here, just safely folding laundry...my old buddy Kid Rock comes out to sing 'All Summer Long' So...I run down into the family room to dance and sing like crazy with my kids (insert note here, no one, not one person in the audience seemed the slightest bit interested in this song as everyone was sitting totally still. ? ) OK, so, just as we are lovin Kid Rock...who in the heck comes out to sing along? LIL WAYNE!!!! With a different pair of pants worn below his butt. <*sigh> And once again...I had to leave. Oh, how I long for the days of the real MTV...Music Television.

Until next time...

Alive and Kickin'

I arrived home Saturday to find my husband sound asleep in bed, where he stayed for most of the day and only one girl remaining from the party. From all reports the party went well, and the guest of honor was very surprised...that is indeed what a surprise party is for right? Since my precious one funded this party on her own, I believe she was bit surprised at the cost of even a basic party...Good thing she's a working girl. The house was in one piece although I think EVERY blanket, sheet, and pillow in the house is now dirty. Overall, not so bad. My husband said he only had to talk to them one time at the movie theatre, since they had to leave the theatre every 5 minutes for refills, but other than that...no problems. I think what that really means is my husband fell soundly asleep at about 9:30 and who knows what happened after that. He is still in a bit of shock I think, but all is well.

Saturday I spent the day running children to football games, boyfriend's houses, sweet 16 parties, and on and on...today I committed to no running, no driving, no leaving the house. I didn't even go to church...{sorry God} I just really needed a veg day. So far I slept in, made lunch, read the paper, took a nap, started the laundry, loved the cat, watched Steph play a few rounds of guitar hero, and soon I hope to be out of my pajamas. I know it's almost 5:00 but sheeez! I girl's gotta rest once in a while right?

I got an email that the bookstore has sent my books, so homework will start big time tomorrow and I start teaching child development classes at the Y again on Wednesday, so I must get those classes written by tomorrow. I have a few weeks of case notes to get caught up on this week and some lists to make: Lists of what to pay, what to do, what the kids need, etc. etc. I also need to start planning a sweet 16 party for the big girl. Steph is due to get her license here in the next 7 weeks, so I've committed to letting her drive where ever we go. Also...it's my honey and my's 18th wedding anniversary tomorrow. Really, got nothing planned for that unfortunately. Perhaps we'll sit around and watch our wedding video after my 14 hour day tomorrow and reminisce.

Today on my list is to get the bed cleaned off in my scrap room so I can finally get it out of there...then the next big task is to clean out the garage...I think that will be a family task for next Sunday as we hope to get to the apple orchard on Saturday. Looks to be a beautiful fall week ahead...high's in the 70's lows in the 40's. Cool and Crisp...Aaaaaaahhhhhh that is the life!

Until next time...

Friday, September 5, 2008

10 year old poet...

Today I was going through some paperwork and found a poem that my big girl wrote when she was 10. Thought I'd share it complete with her 'own' spelling.

Bio-Poem

Stephanie

Loving
Loyal
Witty

Wishes to become a powerful yet famous dancer,

Dreams her Grandpa Milo was still living,

Wants to have a room of her own.

Who wonders what it would be like to live in Europe.

Who fears guns and wars.

Who is afraid of saying public speaches.

Who likes the song skater boi..

Who believes in God and Jesus.

Who loves dogs and pupies.
Who loves hoursback riding.
Who loves her home and family
Who loves swimming and dancing

Who plans to have a good life.
Who plans to be a great dancer.
Who plans to get exalent grades.

Whose final destination is Heaven.

Somewhere in this poem is the message to her mama that I musta done something right ;)

Totally Wrapped...

I was emailing my friend Catherine today and commented that it is amazing what little girls can accomplish when they are totally wrapped around their Daddy's finger...for instance...having Dad take her to the dollar store for decorations and then to the mall to buy a new outfit for the party, after a long day's work. Taking a minute with Dad to figure out how many pizza's will be needed and how many guests will be attending. Calculating transportation needs to and from the movie theatre. And my favorite...Dad is coming home early from work so the pizza's are there when the guests arrive and the party can start early. I think I even saw Dad do a bit of picking up around the house last night :) My daughter did breath a sigh of relief when I told her I'd clean the kitchen and scrub the floor so she didn't have to. I somehow managed to get the big girl off her butt long enough to put away a load of laundry and clean off the end tables. There was quite a bit of complaining and yelling and whining, and I'm too tired's going on...but eventually she did comply. I'm bravely leaving my camera at home...so I'm trusting there will be at least 300 pictures of the big event. The precious one was up at 5 this morning putting on the finishing touches and even making sure the house was decorated for fall. Gotta love her huh?

OK, then...my son said...I'm having friends over Friday too. Ummmmm. No. You're. Not. 12 prepubescent girls and a houseful of adolescent boys...Not on my watch and CERTAINLY!!!!! not on Dad's watch! I suggested he have a sleep over on Saturday night since the house will already be clean ;) (Great idea huh?) Kill two birds with one stone as they say...or in our case...kill two parents with two slumber parties in one weekend! Good luck to us...for tonight at least I'll be in my peaceful hotel room enjoying the sleep that will be absent from my husband's evening. Super Dad...or just insane?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Super Dad or just insane?

It all started simply enough...

Precious one: "Mom, can I have a surprise party for Bree?"
Mom: "Ummmm, when?"
PO: "This Friday"
Insert note here that our house has major CHAOS syndrome right now...so having a party is a huge undertaking...
Mom: "Uh, let's see...I'm not home...so it's up to your Dad"
PO: "When do you think Dad will be in a good mood so I can ask him..."
Mom: "Probably never if the republicans stay in office...oh wait...I digress, probably now is as good a time as ever."
PO runs upstairs...silence...runs downstairs
PO: "Dad said yes!"
Mom: "Reeeeeeeeaaly?, whatya got planned?"
PO: "Cake, icecream and presents at our house and then a movie."
Mom: "How many?"
PO: "12"
Mom: "What? Does Dad know that?"
PO: "Yup"
This was...I think on Monday night...yes, Monday night. We then proceeded to make 10 invitations. Check...my part was done.
Fast forward to last night...
PO: "I'm having a slumber party"
Mom: "What, when?"
PO: "Friday...Dad said it was ok"
Mom: (Clearly questioning Dad's sanity) "Reeeeeaally..."
PO: "Yup! Dad thought when I asked him the first time I asked for a slumber party so I might as well have one."
Mom: "Good for Dad...I think?"

Later...Dad says...did you year we're having a slumber party?
Mom says...yes have you lost your mind?
Dad said...I'm not sure how I got myself into this...
Mom said...right on.

Remember my last rant on how I can't wait for school to be over? Let me just interject here how grateful I am to be at school on Friday...Good luck to you super dad! (I sure hope Grandma's available for reinforcements)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Christmas List

As I was running through my mental to do list today I was thinking, geez I think this list is longer than the super-long-busier-than-ever Christmas to do list. So, guess what I did last night to get caught up...I came home and went straight to bed. Let me see...items checked off the list: 0 But here's the deal...I did work 14 hours yesterday and came home with a pounding headache. The sleep was much needed (especially after the whopping 4 hours I got the night before!) But today... mommy guilt. Did I talk to the kids? Did I kiss them? Hug them? Feed them? I don't recall. I think I said hello. I think I asked one to plug in my phone so the alarm would go off this morning. I think I grunted something to my husband. I hope it was something nice. I took some tylenol and passed out in 10 seconds or less.

Today is a day made for me. Yesterday it was 90 something...yes our first 90 something all summer and it was God awful humid and buggy. Where did all the bugs come from? Today...it is pouring...I mean pouring beautiful cooling rain. High's in the low 70's, turn off the air, open the windows, smell the rain, beautiful day.

I start the second part of my internship today and next week I'm back to teaching at my second job. At that point, it's full steam ahead until April when the internships wind up, and May when I graduate. Today, another 14 hour one on the schedule...but today I commit to the list...a slightly different list than yesterday...no laundry, no cooking, no cleaning, just saying hello, hugging, kissing, and listening to my kids :) Somewhere along the way I'll try to throw in more than a grunt to my husband ;)

Monday, September 1, 2008

Weekend review

What a fantastic weekend it was *sigh...Of course there are 60 pictures of my great niece Aubrey. I just really can't get enough of her cuteness! The rest of the pics are pretty self explanatory...except for the AA boy with his pants down. Please excuse my rant...why oh why must I have to continue to look at other's butts? Now...typically boys that wear their pants below...yes below their butts barely have enough butt to hold them up anyway (hey! maybe that's why they wear them below their butts!)...but then you choose to wear them below your butt? And have to hold them up constantly while walking? And you're just too cool to pull up your shorts after bending over on the beach so your boxers hang out in a bubble? If that's cool, then I just don't want any part of it. When will that no longer be cool? Am I old? Am I getting old? I have teenagers, They will NOT wear their shorts under their butt...even if I am old!

However...I am evidently not so old when it comes to guitar hero. OK, OK, I was REALLY bad at first...but then I took my first guitar hero lesson and viola! I'm jamming to Boston with the best of 'em! It was a great weekend...lots of kickin back...lots of beach time...lots of dreaming about my new beach home...or perhaps my winter home or who knows, but this girl is gonna be on the beach some day! But for today...it was the next best thing to paradise...



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