Thursday, April 30, 2009

Do not, read Matt, Liz, and Madeleine

I love Matt's blog...but today I just couldn't take it...sometimes it is so sad and I so admire Matt. Really, I'm not telling you not to read it...but have some kleenex for today's post. What an amazing man, an adorable baby, and a tragic story...

Changing topics now...there's really no good transition...tomorrow is my last day of school, I have two tests. Biiiiiig sigh...a potluck and a party.

It has been a crazy week at work with lots of restraints...full moon perhaps?

Grammie arrived today, safely :)

If you're my neighbor and your reading this...I'm sorry my lawn is only a quarter mowed. My sonshine couldn't get the mower restarted and his lackadaisical mother hasn't forced him to finish it apologies.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Overheard at the Ruchus

Aubrey (to the big girl): That a monkey on your shirt?
Big Girl: No you're a monkey, Aubrey
Aubrey: No Stephanie; Aubrey a froggie

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Random and generally unrelated

Graduation is quickly approaching! I have just one class left before the big day...I was just sharing that thought that is totally unrelated to the following pictures. The big girl is going to today we shopped several hours for a dress. I was a little displeased at some of the really poor quality dresses we saw with really high prices. We finally ended up at David's Bridal where they had a fabulous selection. (It doesn't hurt that the big girl is a size 4 and of course how many times do you wish you weren't a size 14 cuz there are no 14's left on the rack, but there's always lots of 4's...and 0's....and 1's and all kinds of other ridiculous sizes...) She finally narrowed it down to two dresses...this one...

and this one...

The big girl has a hard time appreciating my taste and repeated on more than one occasion how she wished she had a friend with to give their opinion. (Good thing I'm not the sensitive type or I might have had my feelings hurt) Not really, I've just come to accept that's the way things are...So, after much deliberation...this was the final choice...
When the clerk rang up the dress it was on sale $40 less than the marked fabulous is that? The dress also has a matching wrap and I got her the cutest little purse that exactly matches. A big sigh of relief on the part of the mama! It's really exciting that my Mom will be here on Prom day, so she'll get to be a part of the excitement!
Here's the catalog picture so you can see it with the wrap...her dress is embroidered and beaded along the white inset...two weeks from today...stay tuned for a few hundred pictures!

The big girl seems to have a general theme of black and white lately...check this out... and white...This was Stephanie's latest accident (accident #3... hair dye here I come!)

Once again she was sitting in traffic (the third time she's been hit while stopped!) and a young gentleman was in a hurry, crossed into oncoming traffic to try and get around her and subsequently side swiped her car. Ugh! Then, to add insult to injury...he told his insurance agent that she hit him!! I was beside myself...I told the agent...come look at her can see where his wheel turned all the way down the side of her car for goodness sake! It was a bit of a shock to her to realize that people will lie to try to get out of responsibility.
When she called to say she had been in an accident I was walking out the door to school...I told her I'd send her Dad to which she replied..."Why do I need Dad?" Well, after the little insurance discrepancy...I explained to her...and that's why you need Dad! People will take advantage of you. A tough but necessary lesson...
Ok, on to other non related things...we are inundated with precious one has filled all the feeders and they are everywhere...I love the birds...except for these morning glories which enjoy perching and subsequently pooping on my car!

He thinks that luggage rack makes a perfect perch!
Back to graduation...I had my last full weekend of school...we decided we have hit the point of utter friend Carlene brought two right flip flops for class today...

AND we got our regalia!

We went into two of our old classrooms with our caps and gowns on...we were just a bit giddy! We surely look so tired, but have really never been happier!

Friday, April 24, 2009

She's WAAAAYYYY to young to be married...

I was sitting here minding my own business this morning when my big girl asked me..."Mom, Do I cook?" as she held her phone in her hand. I paused for a moment and someone proposing to you or exactly who wants to know if you cook? She responded that her friend Steven wanted to know...since she successfully burned her toaster strudel this morning to a crisp and stunk up our whole house...evidently he was inquiring if all of her cooking episodes were less than successful. My response was..."If you call browning hamburger cooking, they yes you cook!" And can't get married! OK, just kidding about the last part...Steven wasn't proposing, he was just teasing her...The Grammie will be visiting in a few days...time for some serious cooking lessons! I should add that after she had burnedthe strudel AND dropped it on the floor...she did offer it to me for breakfast. Yum.My.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The new normal...

This week I started my first week of no internship. The first weeknights home in 2 years. 2.years. Isn't that amazing? The honey and I started carpooling yesterday since we now work about a mile apart. It was nice to ride to and from and have a private minute to chat. We stopped at the grocery store on the way home and then had dinner as a family, at the dining room table. Very odd, very likable, very could get used to this. I could tell my precious one was eating it all up. She really enjoys family moments and I'm so glad that now we'll have them every day, not just on special occasions. I will still be working one night a week, until I get my LSW and then it's back to the grind...for now however, I love the new normal!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

You oughta be in pictures...

I did it! I did it! I finally got a cute picture of our dog Lacey. We've had Lacey for several years now, and here's the thing about Lacey: She is nervous...with a capital N. Every time she's sitting around looking cute...I get out the camera...and she moves, or tries to lick the camera or run way or I get some terrific profiles like this... or the super blurry trying to lick the camera like this... or sometimes she looks down, like this... but sometimes, on days like today....I get this! What a super sweet girl!

On my way to to work...yippee!

It's Sunday afternoon and I am so excited to go back to work tomorrow. I got quite a bit done this week, of course not nearly as much as I'd hope, but enough none the less. The number one thing I got done was painting my office at work. So exciting! Tomorrow I can finish rearranging and organizing and then MAN!!! will I ever be able to get a lot of work done.

I got to spend 3 days with my baby Aubrey this week. She is just the sweetest girl ever. Here she is dying eggs on Easter with the precious one and the big girl...

Every year I take a picture of my before Easter ham, but never the after Easter ham....well this year it was going to be different I tell ya! I remembered the before picture...
AND I remembered the after picture. If I don't say so myself...I'm getting to be quite an excellent ham cooker. It was soooooo Delicious! After dinner, we had our Easter Egg hung. Uncle Tim and Shana took the liberty of hiding the eggs this year....we gave Aubrey a head start. She has 'honey' so wrapped around her little finger that he held her bag for her while she found her eggs!

The week after Easter Spring has sprung! Gratefully, it was the week I was off for spring break. I got some pics of the dogs enjoying a sun bath every day...except for Lacey...I can only get pictures of her walking around since she's so hyper, she can't every sit still long enough for a picture...
Bluey on the other hand...he LOVES to lay in the sun...and I LOVE to hug him when he comes in all warm and snuggly. Today, he's limping around cuz he's getting old...and at times his legs or hips bother him. You know he doesn't feel well when 8 people have come to my door and he didn't get up once :( Poor baby...

As I mention earlier...I spent 3 days with the precious baby girl this week. On Friday we got to go to the park. We had a picnic there and the sun caught me so off guard I even got a little sun burn! Look at this sweet girl...
This weekend we headed off to the Great Wolf Lodge in Wisconsin Dells for Kristina's birthday. What, you ask? She's having another birthday? Well, know her birthday was in January, but we are just now getting around to her's just been too busy, and we haven't felt our share of the economic stimulus to be able to afford it! Anyway...we finally got her party in this weekend... We rented a condo and headed to the Dells with 9 friends in tow... we returned home about and hour ago and we are wiped out...I am heading to bed for a nap before I get up to make dinner...There didn't seem to be a lot of drama this year, which is a great feat for 13 year olds! Or, perhaps I just wasn't aware of it...It is nice when the group has been friends for sooooo long. I know all of the parents, and no one even had to call to discuss the 'party' before allowing their daughters to attend. Kristina has a nice bunch of friends and we had a great time! My BFF and her family happened to be there also (really, it wasn't planned it was a coincidence!) so it was especially nice that I got to spend time with Angie, her husband and their children...what a wonderful week...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Everyone can't be like me...

I know you're going to be super jealous when I tell you of my plans today... laundry, homework, cooking dinner. Now, is that exciting or what?!? But here's the thing...for girls that usually have to do laundry, homework, and cooking dinner between 3 is a jobs! Only laundry, homework, and dinner....odd that I think that is a fabulous thing...but I do...and today I plan to enjoy it.

Tuesday I did homework when no one was home and I was simply amazed at the thought process that went on with no interruptions. Odd. Yesterday I went to Walmart in the middle of the day. There was no one pushing, no screaming kids, no crowded isles...just leisurely shopping. What a strange a lovely lifestyle I'm experiencing this week.

Spring's definitely for me baby!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Just pretend they're there...even if they're not

I was out and about yesterday...first let me say that I'm off work this week from my day job. Seriously, this is the first week off work that I've been home by myself in forever. I can't believe how much I'm getting done (oh AND how much there is to do!...geeeez how did I get so behind?)

Anyway...yesterday I did homework, laundry, dishes, napped, and then I had to go to the college to work for a few hours (that's my night job, not to be confused with my day job) -- so I had to stop and get cat food, since the darlings' world was ending if they didn't get food in their fat bellies soon...again, I digress...after the cat food run, I thought that a pot belly sandwich was sounding mighty I stopped in. I stepped in line and ordered a turkey on white, no cheese, mayo, lettuce and tomato...which was evidently WAY too many instructions for the dude behind the counter. He replied do you want cheese, bacon and mushrooms? Uhhhh... what? No, mayo, lettuce, and tomato..., "Oh, you order toppings at the next station," was his reply. Ok, so I moved to the next station where the SAME dude was working. He acted like he'd never seen me before. "What do you want on your sandwich?" I said, Mayo, lettuce and tomato, AND no cheese (Since my newly toasted sandwich had gobs of cheese on it, that I had clearly not ordered...YUCK!) so he peeled off the cheese and asked if I wanted mustard and something else...NO!!! MAYO LETTUCE TOMATO...THAT'S IT!!! 3RD TIME!!! I was silently yelling in my he dressed my sandwich and sent me on my way. When I was paying... a new guy got in line and asked for vegetable soup. The same worker dude yelled at the top of his lungs, "ONE CUP OF VEGETABLE!" and then proceeded over to the soup station, dished up the soup, and went back to the ordering station and delivered it to the customer. Odd...Very odd...perhaps, there should be other people working at other stations, and perhaps this guy is hoping they're there (which they are NOT by the way) and perhaps he can't adjust to being the only dude working...but let me tell was a strange (at best) experience.

By the way...when I was in the car eating my sandwich guess what was on it... ONIONS!!! Now...go back and reread this post. Of the three times I ordered the toppings on my sandwich, did you even once hear the slightest mention of onions? Me neither.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Cheerleaders...that is the thought for today. Remember cheerleaders? When I was in high school, some of them were my friends, some of them had drinking issues, some of them were sickeningly popular, some of them were smart, some of them weren't. As I go to high school basketball and football games I usually watch the cheerleaders more than the game itself. I sit in awe of how obsessed they are with image and their every move. So much so, that they look kind of nerdy trying to act excited while still being cool. Odd how our images of certain things change as we get older.

Over the past few days (probably with regard to the fact that graduation quickly looms ahead of me), I have been contemplating the cheerleaders in my life. Perhaps because I am experiencing so much support at both of my new jobs...cheerleaders are in the forefront of my mind. People often comment to me...gee, I don't know how you do it...I do it, largely in part to the cheerleaders in my life. Not cheerleaders in polyester miniskirts and too tight shirts, the ones seeking popularity...I'm talking about CHEERLEADERS...real life cheerleaders...the ones that make me kinda blush when they say such nice things, or are so encouraging... I believe I have been so very blessed to have such an abundance of cheerleaders in my, I thought I'd recognize a few of them...

My Mama...nuf said right? Shouldn't your Mama always be your #1 cheerleader?

My Mama-n-law...How could a girl be so lucky to have two Mama's love her like mine do?

My honey...not always the first to step up...but always stepping up with quiet unwavering support...a lot of times, he lets me think about things to be sure they're for me, before throwing in his support...and then when things get a little crazy (like the whole school board sign thing) he's there to pick up the slack that my overbusiness leave behind.

My children...they think I'm nerdy and not nearly rich enough...but they're still able to step outside of their teenage egos to cheer on the Mama.

My bubbas...Bill & Tim...whether it was college algebra...reiterating time and time again that yes, I have chosen the wrong type of dog for me, financial advice, fixing my computers for the hundredth time, while shaking their head, what to do with our parents advice...again...they're always there.

My friends...I have mentioned here that I have to schedule time for friends and that there was a time in my life when I literally had no friends, cuz I literally didn't take the time to do so...Now I have friends that I love dearly. Like sisters. I've never had a sister, but if I did...their names would be Angie, Sarah, Stacie, Anne, and Carleen.

Those that have gone before us...Poppy, Gramma Bee, Aunt Ruth, Pastor Bill

Work know the don't 'hang out' ...but you love them none the less...Cheryl, Racie, Nita, Ann, Ann, Laura, Alisha, Neen, Ela, Jackie, Angie

Bosses...I am blessed to have two of the kindest hearted bosses...Linda and Wendy

Church friends, pastors and their families

New found board friends, voters, face book friends (wow!)

How could a person with that much support, not be successful? It just isn't possible...

Finally...the Great, I'm giving thanks for the ultimate cheerleader...who continues to bless me abundantly...

"Shine...make em wonder what you got. Make em wish that they were not, on the outside looking bored. Shine, let em shine before all men. Let em see great works and then, let em glorify the Lord." Newsboys

If you find that you are not surrounded by cheerleaders...make a change, make new friends, get a new job, learn a new career, get or finish an's up to you! If you're a cheerleader in my life... THANK YOU!!! You mean the world to me.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Let's play a game of photo catch up!

Last weekend, we headed to Peoria for my great nephew Dylan's second birthday...if you've been reading me a while, perhaps you remember last years how he has grown! We started out with a quick dip in the pool when we arrived on Saturday appears Dylan is training to be a world class Olympic swimmer by practicing his kicks! Then...after an exhilarating swim...catching up with some re hydration... The next day we headed to Dylan's house for his party...he has a great arm...when he opened the bat, his Daddy was trying to get him to hit the pinata with it, but he kept saying...where's the ball? He hit a few balls and then was ready for the pinata...Dylan had my nephew Ryan's favorite team on his cake! He got lots of presents. My husband joked that Robby will have to build an addition onto the toy box to accommodate all the new toys! Dylan seemed to approve of his new wagon... and then pooped out from all the excitement! Happy 2nd Birthday Dylan...we love you!

Right now I'm on spring break from work. My first day off I took Kristina and a bunch of my little friends to the movies...
The boys and I saw Monsters vs. Aliens in 3D and the girls saw Hannah Montana...

After the movie we headed to Chuck E. use our free coupon from our last visit. The construction is done and I must say it is very nice and super clean...
The kids had a wonderful time...
It was so nice to see them again! I can't wait til it's warm enough to go on a picnic!

Yesterday and today I'm busy getting ready for 13 people for Easter...I made these yummies... While the Easter Bunny got ready... to deliver the goods!
Right now, the baskets are hidden, while baby Aubrey is sitting on my lap talking up a blue streak. I am so blessed to have such a beautiful family...
This next week I have a huge todo list...starting with this...
This is my office...desperately in need of some remodeling. I plan to paint on Monday and complete some furniture moving...I'll have to post some after pictures. Right now my office is pink and burgundy, and I'm the first to say...I'm not really down with that! I do love the big windows and all the space. Garage cleaning is on the agenda this week, homework, carpet cleaning and some painting in my house. I can't wait to see the results...for today's family time...I gotta get ready for church:)
Until next time...

Friday, April 10, 2009

A Swift Punch to the Gut...

I was catching up on my blog reading today...and tuned in to Matt, Liz, and Madeline. Before I lightened my blogroll, I was an ever faithful reader of the newborn identity and the Spohrs are multiplying, where Heather and Mike wrote with great talent and humor about their baby Maddie. I was reading Matt Logelin...he posted that Maddie had passed away...pause...pause...sigh...I just read her blog a week ago when she was playing April Fool's day jokes on her Dad and Maddie was sitting in the high chair does this happen? Please take a moment to keep Maddie and her family in your prayers through this most hearbreaking time...

It is Well With My Soul...

The first song you hear when opening my blog is It Is Well. This was always a victorious song for I loved to sing at the top of my lungs as almost a victory march against life challenges. One year my daughter's competition dance team danced to this song and I have just been so moved by it ever since. When I attended my pastor's funeral a few weeks ago...this song was played at his service. It was no longer a song of victory for was a song of intense sadness and longing. As time has passed I have not yet found myself able to change my music...even though usually after a couple weeks I have to change songs because I get tired of them.

Today I realized why I haven't changed this song yet. I believe I may almost be to the point that I can sing this song victoriously...having faith in the Father...and knowing that Pastor Bill is where he worked hard to be his entire life. It seems that a bit of healing has moved over me. *sigh*

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Sign collecting UGH!

Worked my 13 hours, ran to Rockton to pick up the precious one's super cute party invitations that my friend Sarah made for her, then ran out and picked up loads and loads of signs. I'm pretty sure we got all the small ones, but it was dark, so tomorrow I'll have to drive around in the daylight to double check. The hubby has to bring home the truck to bring home two enormous signs and then we have the challenge of storing them, should I run again in four years. Today I am grateful for young legs (not mine) that can jump out of the car quickly to make this job SO much easier! If you see a stray sign anywhere...let me know!

I'm In!!

I won, I won! Great news! Now...I have lots to learn...just what I love doing best! Thank you SO much to everyone that voted for me...and if I have a sign in your'll be picked up no later than Thursday...gotta work 13 hours today! Have a great day!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Civic Duty

You knew this post was coming...

today is the day to perform your civic acknowledge the freedom that we embrace as is the day...


Monday, April 6, 2009

To the Dr. we shall go!

Let me just say that glasses for 5 people can be outrageously expensive. So much so, that we have avoided the eye Dr. and committed to a life of bluriness, except for the big girl who can't see to get out of bed without glasses. Have I mentioned that I love my new job? Oh yes, I think I have...well here's reason number insurance! For real! We now have vision insurance AND my very own eye doctor takes beginning this Friday, we're all going to the eye at a time of course, but over the next few weeks, my family should be looking like a walking lens crafters commercial! Aaaaahhhhhh how sweet it is~

Saturday, April 4, 2009

RUCH for school board and other pressing items

WHEW!!! What a busy week it's been...Monday...worked on my research paper...just about done :) Tinley Park for a meeting, back to work for a meeting and worked at the clinic...Wednesday...13 hour day...Easter Seals...UIC...YWCA...home at 9 to collapse :) Thursday and Friday...I was in Chicago for training...great training...can't wait to get back to work and implement it....while I was there I ate here... YUM.MY. I had some delicious spinach pizza and salad Pompei.
When I returned home Friday signs were finally done..about 3 weeks later than anticipated, but really, I'm glad I waited. I think the other signs are a sea of mess right now, and it gave me a chance to see everyone elses signs, so I could be sure mine show up...which they do! The hubby (seen here) was a fabulous help...and I can't thank him enough. AND guess what?!? 4 X 8 foot signs fit in my suburban! Who knew? I did have to play hookie from school to ensure that they got up promptly. It was quite a day since I'd been up since 4. I finally arrived in lake Geneva for school at about 9PM...definitely too long of a day driving too many miles! When I got home on Saturday, the big girl was learning how to check her oil... how cute is that?'s the important thing...It's really not my place to tell people how to vote, but if you want my opinion, when voting for Harlem School Board...please vote Ruch, Lawrence, Geyer, and Ranieri. The 3 ladies and Vic. No newly running candidates attended the school board events and one candidate did attend the voters' quarum and in my humble opinion....let's just say I'd appreciate your vote for the 3 ladies and Vic. 'nuff said. To end on a bright note... Spring has sprung in the Ruch house! No more socks! I'm off to my great nephew's second birthday...until next time...