About Me

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I like to think of myself as the 'crazy mom of four'. I'm 31 years old and I love my life, my kids, my husband and my God. "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." Jim Eliot

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I like routine

I'm realizing that it is difficult for me to take long periods of time away from the warm safety of my own home. I have really loved being back in my house...the kids having plenty of space...it's just nice to have a home. I am thankful for the blessings that I have. Not that I regret living with my mother-in-law. It was a great learning experience for all of us and it really made Kris and I appreciate our home. I am thankful for Cindy's willingness to put up with us for as long as she did.

I have been away from home for just 4 days and am already craving what feels to me like the safety of my home. I'm constantly on edge lately, probably worried that the kids will get hurt or break something, or annoy someone. I am thankful for my parents' generosity in letting us stay here all week. I truly am. I appreciate them putting up with us-there's a lot of us to put up with, as my brother and his wife and three kids are staying her too. But I realized this evening that I like my bubble. I've known that...but it is times like these that remind me how much I like my bubble. There is a reason they call it a 'comfort zone'. It's comfortable. I have become such a home-body. I like to be home. I like to be in MY space. I like the kids to be in THEIR space. I like knowing where everything is, and knowing that there is nothing that the kids will get into and break, or swallow. If they color on my walls and floors, well they are my walls and floors. It's not as big of a deal. And fortunately the kids haven't done anything like that. I am just starting to feel overwhelmed by anxiety with the 'what if' they do. And ultimately it isn't a big deal...my mind knows this. But it doesn't ease the anxiety I feel the longer I am away from home. "Do not be anxious about anything." This is a hard Scripture for me. I do the exact opposite on a regular basis. I am anxious about almost everything!

The kids are still up...it is after 10pm here...but they all 4 took naps today until about 5:30pm so as long as they are occupying themselves quietly we are letting them stay up. We are all upstairs in the two bedrooms that are up here, so at least we don't really have to worry about them waking anyone else up.

I kept hearing this soft rumbling noise and I asked Kris if he heard it. He said it sounded like a dog snoring or something. I told him I thought it was Olivia. Sure enough-she is wheezing a little bit. Time to start the albuterol. Hopefully we won't have to worry about her asthma out here. I am glad I remembered her inhalers though or we would have been in trouble.

Our basement flooded yesterday. I don't know much...Cindy was out at the house having to deal with it all while we are gone. We are not really sure how it happened or why or if it will be covered by our insurance but I know it will all work out.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Yes...yes I did...

Kris and I went to see Yes Man yesterday and we really enjoyed it. It was light, funny, entertaining. A good movie. I am not a huge Jim Carey fan but I really liked this movie. Kris and I had a great time spending the day together without the kids. After the movie we went over to our friend Brandi's house and saw her new baby Samantha. She was so little and cute. It made me want another baby. Not want another baby like I regret getting my tubes tied...want another baby like miss the little tiny baby feel and smell. While I miss having a baby that little, I am so thankful that my kids are all sleeping through the night. I don't miss getting up every two hours to feed the baby. But they are so precious at that age...3 weeks...so little...so innocent...so...quiet when they are sleeping!

Kris and I have started watching "How I Met Your Mother". It's funny. Most of our "shows" are on their holiday break so we had to find something new to watch. We chose this one. We just started Season 3. So far so good...

I finished making Christmas gifts for our largest client today. I started Friday and finally finished everything else today. I made my twist on Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chip cookies (basically I just added white chocolate chips and pecans), White Chocolate Macademia Nut cookies, Almost Candy Bars (YUM-thanks for the recipe Cindy!), Peppermint Bark, Cherry fudge, Almond Joy fudge, and Strawberry Amaretto fudge. And by the way, I have the BEST recipe for fudge. It tastes great and while the consistency is softer than what you might be used to, it is the EASIEST fudge you will ever taste. Ready for my secret recipe? One 12 oz package of chocolate chips (semi sweet or milk-your choice) and one can of sweetened condensed milk. Put them in a microwave safe container (of course I use the PC large micro-cooker). Cover the dish and microwave for 3 minutes. If you have a newer microwave it may only take 2 1/2 to 2 min and 45 seconds. Then you stir it together until it is smooth and creamy and add whatever flavoring you like. Pour it into an 8x8 pan and refrigerate until firm. Slice and serve! :-) Simple right?

Here are some variations I have tried:

Peppermint - You can either use chocolate chips and add peppermint flavoring or you can buy the mint chips and melt those with the sweetened condensed milk...it's better if you use the mint chips.

Cherry/Strawberry/Raspberry - 2 Tbsp of whatever flavoring you want.

Toffee - add the Heath toffee bits YUM!

Strawberry Amaretto - 1 Tbsp Strawberry flavoring and 2 Tbsp Almond Extract. Chopped almonds (optional).

Almond Joy - 2 Tbsp coconut flavoring and chopped Almonds. Top with coconut if desired.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I need to work....but...

...I have a funny little story to tell first before I forget. It is probably rather embarrassing to my poor little 'frightened-of-toilets' Abbey but I am telling it nonetheless. Half the time we have to make Abbey go back and flush the toilet at home. She probably never flushes at school or other places...but I can't be sure. She hates flushing. She is finally used to going on the potty and is VERY comfortable at home. She still has some general anxiety when out in public, especially if the toilet flushes on its own.

Last night while Kris and I were finishing dinner, Abbey had gone to the bathroom to go potty. Our toilet sometimes has 'issues' and doesn't like to flush so I heard Abbey yell "Daddy the toilet won't flush!" We both responded and then heard her say "Nevermind. I got it." But what happened next caused my heart to stop momentarily. It's one of those moments, one of those sounds that tells you something bad just happened. I heard a very loud THUD and then a horrendous scream coming from Abbey's throat. I was sure she was hurt...very hurt...

I was relieved to see her running (extremely quickly for a 6 year old) through the living room. She threw herself in my arms and was just sobbing and shaking. Through the commotion I learned that the toilet had started to rise, to overflow. It had terrified Abbey. You would not believe how scared she was. The thud I have come to believe was Abbey literally jumping off the ground when the toilet started to fill too high. Fortunately it did not actually overflow. But she stood there, sobbing in my arms, just clinging to me for dear life. Like any loving mother, I soothed her and tried hard (it was difficult!) not to laugh. Finally she calmed down enough to talk to me about it. She explained through big crocodile tears that "the water started coming up really fast and her poop was going to come out of the toilet."

She'll probably kill me one day for posting this...but hopefully this little 'incident' won't be a set back with the progress we've made on getting her to use and flush toilets!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Abbey decided to sing her prayer tonight-it was cute. She was sure to sing that she loves her daddy even when he spanks her. And she loves Livvy even when Livvy is selfish to her. It was amusing.

I made a Turtle Cheesecake for a church Christmas party we are going to tomorrow evening. I have made it once before-it was a recipe I found on bigoven.com. It has a graham cracker crust-actually it's a vanilla wafer crust but I used graham crackers. Then you melt caramels and evaporated milk and pour that in. Then you top it with toasted pecans and the cheesecake mixture which is just cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and eggs with melted chocolate added at the end. Then you bake and viola...Turtle Cheesecake. We can't WAIT to eat it! Kris wanted me to make another one tonight so he could eat it but I told him he has to wait for it to chill anyway so he is stuck waiting until tomorrow night.

Now I am going to watch last night's The Office.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Days like today...

...make me miss being medicated. I am trying to relax, to wind down...I have been so on edge today. Kris went to play basketball tonight and it was all I could do to keep from going insane at bedtime. I felt completely incapable of being a mom tonight. I really wanted Kris to be home to rescue me, as he so often does. But the house is FINALLY quiet now and I am just chilling out with some Saturday Night Live reruns. I still feel like my heart is going to explode inside my chest...ultimately I think it is because I have been working so much. I wish I knew how to just relax and not let little unimportant things bother me. Anyway, I just needed to get that out. I think with a good night's sleep, which I haven't had in a while, I will feel better.

I like weekends.

As a stay at home mom, I never really could tell a difference between the weekdays and the weekends. Now that I work full-time, I have a greater appreciation for the weekend. I really enjoy my weekends and am always sad to see them draw to a close. It's already Saturday evening and too soon it will be time to go back to work. I did manage to stay up late last night and get my work stuff caught up, so hopefully next week will not be so chaotic. Kris has told me that I can get out tomorrow after church so I am looking forward to having some time alone.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh Kaleb....

I love my son. I can't communicate enough how MUCH. He makes me laugh, he makes me cry, he tries my patience, and yet he fills my heart with so much joy. Despite the struggles we face on an almost daily basis, he is a good kid and I love him dearly. With that being said, let me tell you a little story. :-)

Katherine and Kaleb can read and they are really intelligent kids. So they are always finding those postcards in magazines that you can mail in for 'free' magazines or things. I have told them before those things aren't really free and that we will end up getting a bill. A couple of weeks ago I pulled a magazine subscription card out of the mailbox that Kaleb had filled out and put in the mail. I explained to him that they charge you monthly and we just weren't in a position to be able to do that right now. He seemed ok with this.

Yesterday, we had (from Highlights) this PuzzleMania magazine thing in the mail. I set it aside and continued going through the mail. Kaleb came over and said something like "Oh can I have that puzzle magazine?" I think he just might have said "my" magazine...but am not 100% sure. I asked him if he had sent off for it and he said no. He even reminded me that I had taken it out of the mail. I didn't really believe him, because I knew that I had not sent off for it and the magazine was in HIS name after all. I opened up the bill that was indeed attached and found that it was in his name, but then underneath that "Cindy Bishop" was listed also. When I expressed my confusion with this Kaleb's story began to change. He then told me that a LONG time ago he had filled something out at grandma's house. I told him it had to be recently since we now had received the magazines and a bill. He acted perplexed by this. I thought about it and wondered if maybe Grandma had subscribed to this, so I called her only to find she knew nothing about it.

I really don't think Kaleb understood that if he filled that card out we would get a bill or know anything about it. He did apologize and held fast to his story that he didn't mean to, or something like that. I called Highlights and the guy who answered asked how he could help me. I said "Um...my son is 7 and I did not subscribe to this magazine, so I think he must have." They said they would take care of, credit the account and we could keep the two magazines we had received. I kept trying to explain to Kaleb that just because something says "FREE" doesn't mean it is actually free. But he's a kid and free means free. Anyway, so he ended up with free magazines anyway after all of that, so I guess FREE really IS free!

Here's my question. I have seen my son's handwriting and I can't believe that Highlights would send the magazines off based on what I am sure had to be obviously from a child. Nothing about the situation upset me or anything-I was actually quite amused by the whole thing and I guess Kaleb didn't really learn his lessons because they let us keep the magazines. I have a feeling this is not the only situation like this we will find ourselves in.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Drama queen? No, not me...

Ok...well..maybe...perhaps...most definitely...I suppose I am a drama queen. There. I said it. Happy now? So now it is no secret anymore where my lovely Katherine gets it. Wait...I was probably the only one in denial about it wasn't I? Just thought I would take this moment to admit that to you while I wait for Kris to fix my work computer.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Adding a new Christmas tradition

We put our Christmas tree up yesterday, which you already know if you read the previous blog. We turned on the Christmas music and had a good time going through all of the ornaments and putting them on the tree. Over Thanksgiving my parents came out and my mom brought with her the cookie cutters we used to use to make sugar cookies. Thanks Mom! So I had been dying to make sugar cookies, primarily because I LOVE sugar cookies with icing and red hots on top of them. Call me crazy (DON'T) but it is just the perfect combination! Anyway, I decided I would undertake the stress that is allowing four small children (mind you that is 8 hands and 4 mouths jabbering incessantly!) to help me make the cookies. I let the children actually 'cut' out two cookies each and then I did the rest. After I had baked some, I made this really delicious icing I found the recipe for that had almond extract and corn syrup in it. I mixed some different colors up and even bought some pastry type paint brushes so we could 'paint' the cookies. Below are some pictures of our unprofessional-but-still-cute cookies!


So for those of you who don't know, every year we (my family) each buy a new ornament, and the only ornaments (one or two exceptions taken) on our tree are our yearly additions. We like our ornaments to represent who we are as individuals. Those all combined speak volumes about who our family 'is' and what our interests over the last year have been. Kris, late as usual, does not have his ornament; however, this year he has actually ordered it already and it will be joining the tree as soon as it arrives. So here are some pictures of our 2008 ornaments.
Here is Kaleb's choice-the picture is blurry and I apologize for that but I am not taking another one now. He wasn't really into Star Wars the movies so much, though he does enjoy playing the Wii game with Daddy. But this ornament has a button to push and makes noise, so I think he liked it primarily for that.
This one is Abbey's. She has really loved dancing and talked about ballet quite a bit all year. Oh how I'd love to be able to put her into a ballet class. It could be really good for her coordination...but I can just see it now...she's such a free spirit...everyone around her would be in synch and flawless...and she would be there on the side dancing however she wanted to her heart's content!

This one is the one Olivia chose. She keeps calling it her "Sleeping Beauty ornament". While she still likes Dora, she seems to be moving on towards Barbie and the Disney Princesses. She needs to STOP growing up!

Katherine has really taken a liking to Tinkerbell. Her room is Tinkerbell. Her birthday gifts centered around Tinkerbell. So it was fitting that she chose Tinkerbell for her 2008 ornament.

Some of you may remember that I became quite obsessed with the book "Wicked" and the music, and had I had the opportunity to see the musical, I would have been equally obsessed with that! So it only seemed right to choose a 'Wizard of Oz' ornament this year as mine.

And with the exception of Kris' ornament that we hope to add this week sometime, here is our tree. Each one of these ornaments tell a story and I think that this is my favorite tradition that we have.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Too long...

It's been too long since I wrote last. Same old excuse-I've been busy. Work just doesn't seem to slow down even though peak season was SUPPOSED to be over with 2 months ago! Oh well...business is good so I can't complain. More claims means more success for this budding little start up company I am a part of.

It is almost 1am on Thanksgiving morning. I am waiting for my cheesecake to cool so that I can put it in the fridge. (I had to go back in and edit this because in my sleepy state I actually had typed oven). It has now decided to crack on top-I read somewhere once how to prevent that from happening but if that is the worst thing that happens this Thanksgiving, I will be content. One year I forgot to take my turkey out of the freezer until the night before. It spent the next 8 hours in cold water and was still partly frozen. I believe we ended up having dinner quite a few hours later than I had anticipated that year!

This year my parents have joined us for Thanksgiving dinner. I am very happy about this and thankful that they were able to make it here. It means a lot to me to have them here with us. I am sad that my sister wasn't able to make it this year-it's been tradition for the last 4-5 years for her to come here for Thanksgiving. Katherine is trying to make me feel better by volunteering to get up at 4am on Friday to go shopping with me. I doubt we'll get up that early, but I think it will be fun to have her join me. Really I think she just wants a bagel from Bread Co.!

There really isn't anything 'new' or funny to report. I did start physical therapy for my rib that is out of place but it's nothing exciting to write about, though I do believe it is helping with the pain.
Here is a small list of things I am thankful for (there are many more but I will only list the first few that come to mind):

As always-Diet Dr. Pepper and Red Hots-not necessarily together!
My children...sometimes I am moved to tears by how deep my love for them goes. It's the most amazing thing in the world to love a child!
My husband-he is a great man and husband and a truly amazing father.
Our 'new' church and the friends we are making there.
My parents and the opportunity they gave me as I grew up to learn about God and discover the amazing gift He gave us in offering his only son to save even me.
Food-I love food. I shouldn't love it as much as I do!
The priviledge of having a home to go home to each day.
Technology (cell phones, computers, advances in medicine-we are truly blessed in this day and age)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Before I forget

There are so many cute things my kids say and do. Half of them are forgotten and lost in the busy-ness of life. So before I forget to write this down, I am taking a short break at work to record this funny memory.

Olivia LOVES to sing lately. She has always loved the song Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Recently she has started singing a new version she has learned at school. And she sings it almost everytime we drive somewhere. She knows all about traffic lights apparently and to the tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star she sings:

Twinkle twinkle traffic light
On the corner shining bright
Red means stop, green means go
Yellow means go very slow
Twinkle twinkle traffic light
On the corner shining bright

Now just in general maybe the song isn't impressive but when a three year old with an adorable little voice sings it, it just makes me smile!

Having said that, another song Livvy has been singing is The Wheels on the Bus. The last couple of days I have listened to her singing this, doing little motions as well. There was one verse however we just could not understand. For the daddies on the bus she would raise her hands in the air and say what sounded like "cheese and pepper" or "bread and pepper". But each time I asked if that is what she was saying she would say no and look at me like I was crazy. Last night however I finally figured it out. She was singing for me and when she got to the daddies on the bus she raised her little arms and belted out "breathe the pepper". I said "Are you saying BREATHE?" And she got excited because I finally understood. So then I said "BREATHE THE PEPPER?" And she said "yes" and was excited that I figured it out. Finally it made sense. So I said "Do you mean READ THE PAPER?" She said "NO." She proceeded to raise her little arms and again emphasize that the daddies on the bus "BREATHE THE PEPPER". It was SO funny. So apparently rather than reading the paper the daddies on the bus throw their hands in the air and "Breathe the pepper".

All too quickly this cute age is going to be gone...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Physical therapy? I don't have time for that.

Since I last wrote, Livvy got her stitches out. She is healing nicely and will have a lovely little scar underneath her chin.

I have gone back to the doctor for x-rays on my back-which came back normal. The doctor gave me different meds which didn't help with the pain at all and told me if I wasn't better by Monday (this past Monday) he would send me for physical therapy. So they called today and I will be getting the information and have to schedule physical therapy. Yeah I don't have time for that-if it helps great. And I will go for the therapy but I am anxious when I think about having to schedule it around work.

Things I don't like right now:

The nagging pain in my back.
My son constantly getting in trouble at school.
The public school has way too many half days or days off.
The mess that calls itself my home.

So that you don't think I am too negative, things I love right now:

Listening to The Silver Hand by Stephen Lawhead on my way to and from work.
Diet Dr. Pepper.
Listening to Olivia sing a song about traffic lights to the tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
Abbey's bold fashion statements...tonight there were pink pants with purple shorts over them, a pink/purple striped shirt and then an Easter sun dress over all that and sparklly pink shoes.
Katherine reading a book "Cassie" that I read as a girl.
Kaleb-just Kaleb in general-he's a sweet boy who like his mother has trouble believing there is good in him.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


It was a crazy week. I started the week out with upper back pain. I decided to grin and bear it until Thursday when I could bear it no longer. I went to the doctor and found out that I had a rib out of place. The doctor adjusted my back and gave me a prescription for a muscle relaxer and ibuprofen. As I was driving out of the doctor's parking lot, my throat and ear started hurting. I hoped it would go away-it did not. Friday morning I went to my new friend-the Walgreens Take Care Clinic only to find out that while I did not have an ear infection like I suspected, I did have strep throat. And let me just say that for NOT having an ear infection, my ear sure does hurt even after three days on an antibiotic and round the clock ibuprofen. I did feel well enough today to attempt church. Halfway through I was regretting that I got out of bed-but overall I do feel better than I have been.

The reason for my subject line is what happened after church. I am not sure exactly what happened. Katherine said she tripped Livvy. Kaleb said Katherine ran into him, who then ran into Livvy. But what we do know is Livvy fell down and smacked her face into the pavement outside of church. I held her and saw that blood was pooling under her chin. I rushed her inside and blotted it with wet paper towel. It looked pretty deep and despite my body shaking with anxiety I handled it pretty well. I knew she was going to need stitches. So we spent our afternoon at the ER and Livvy now has 5 stitches in her little chin. Poor girl. Overall though it has been a pretty rough week medically. It's gotta get better right? That's what I keep telling myself.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Organized? No, not me...

...but I did come a little bit closer today. I cleaned out Livvy's drawers and packed away all her 18 month and 2T clothes. I mentioned previously the spice cabinet was organized as well. I have now also cleaned my room (this was a CHORE-it was collecting everything that we didn't have time to deal with whenever people came over). I even cleaned off the dresser and put my sewing machine and other supplies up there so it isn't scattered all over the living. It felt good to accomplish so much today. Seriously I need like a whole week off to accomplish things that I have been putting off because I have no time. I have done a lot of 'work' today but it has been on my time, when I wanted to do it and not because it had to be done. So I am feeling pretty good about my day off. It's drawing to a close though which makes me sad-who knows when I will get another! The next day off I take though I am determined to take one while the kids are in school-though really they haven't been too bad. They are playing with playdoh right now-which is a testament to how I am feeling because I hardly ever let them play with playdoh. It's been a really good day. Really it's been a good week. I have felt so good this week-emotionally/mentally. I can feel God at work in my heart and I know that is a big part of the 'boost' in my mood.

Safe and sound...

Well so far no one has broken into our house-so that is a good sign!

It's about time to sit down and write again. Today I am writing with time to write. I am not writing because I feel like I should because I haven't blogged in a week. I am writing because I took the day off work (granted the kids were out of school so someone had to stay home with them) and because I have time to write! It's been a lovely day so far.

The kids actually slept until 8am which was wonderful! I slept until about 6:30, but still laid in bed until 8. Kris didn't get up for work until then either. Last night I asked him what time he needed to get up-he said the kids would get him up. While he didn't get to work until almost 9 probably, I'll bet he appreciated the sleep! I have discovered that if I take the Rozerem at night it doesn't really help me sleep AND I have trouble getting out of bed. If I DON'T take it, I am falling asleep easier than I used to at least AND I am able to drag myself out of bed before 7am. So I am going to stop taking the Rozerem. I have been going so much lately that I am exhausted by the time 10pm rolls around anyway.

I had breakfast with the kids today. It was nice. We had pumpkin chocolate chip muffins that I made last night. They were delicious! Then I cleaned my kitchen up a little bit and sat down and did nothing. Then I played with Livvy while the other kids were off entertaining themselves. And then I sat down and did nothing. And then I organized my spice cabinet. And then I sat down and did nothing. See the theme? Then I took the sheets off my bed and started a load of laundry--yes people--that's right. I actually started a load of laundry! I MUST BE FEELING GOOD!!! I folded a load of laundry too and put that away and gave the kids a snack. Lunch is started and one again I am sitting down and kind of doing nothing! I am hoping to finish cleaning the living room and take the kids to the thrift store-Katherine and Livvy need winter coats that fit them. And when I get back I am hoping once again to sit down and do nothing! Is this what a day off feels like???

We have started going to a new church. We have been two weeks in a row and really like it. Beyond that, Kris and I have decided it's time to find a place and settle in. I wouldn't have guessed we would wind up at a Southern Baptist church because neither one of us raised up Southern Baptist but it doesn't really matter as long as the core beliefs/doctrine are sound. And they are. And to top it off, they have programs for the kids on Wednesday nights. RA's and GA's that Katherine and Kaleb can get involved in. It seems to me to be like a church sponsored Girl/Boy Scouts which is cool. Abbey will be in Mission Friends and Livvy is too young so she will be in the nursery. We are going to our first ever Wednesday night church. I think it will be a really great experience for the kids and I am looking forward to getting to know this body of Christ. I really feel like God is going to bless us with relationships in this church.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

And here's another one...

I am a bit worked up tonight...anxious. An 'interesting' thing happened tonight. Let me preface this by saying I am a skeptic and Kris always thinks the best about everyone. Put us together and we can usually balance one another out. So this guys comes up to our door this evening. I don't know how old he was-I didn't see him. Kris thought he was about our age, maybe a little younger. And he says his house got broken into today and wanted to know if we saw anything. He said he lived behind us and whoever it was came through the backyards. I immediately did not trust this guy. Kris immediately felt sorry for him. Completely different thoughts and reactions.

I don't know if this guy's house really got broken into. If it had happened during the day, surely he would have called the police. If he had, I would HOPE that the police went around asking the neighbors if they had seen anything. Of course we wouldn't know about that because neither one of us were home before 3:30. But my next question is why is this guy coming to our house now, after the fact to ask if we saw anything. If he got broken into, surely the police would have already tried to track down some witnesses. Second, if he had just found out about it, then he should have called the police, been talking to them and let THEM ask us if we had seen anything.

I told you I am skeptical, not to mention just a little bit (UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR!!!) paranoid. So I immediately think that this guy is checking things out so that later when we are not home, he can break into our house. I always tend to think the worst in this kind of situation. Kris at first thought me absurd. And he actually told this guy that neither one of us saw anything because we were at work. I don't blame him. He's a nice guy and wanted to do what he could to help. He couldn't know how my crazy mind was going to twist it-though after 10 years he could guess! Anyway...so now I am anxious that when we are not home someone is going to break into our house. And it isn't about possessions. I don't care about 'stuff'. It's just that I don't want to go through that feeling of violation and fear again. We have been robbed twice and it is not a pleasant experience. And maybe I am totally overthinking the whole thing and the guy's house really did get robbed. He mentioned to Kris he wasn't the first in the neighborhood-which if that were true then it seems all the more likely that the police would be 'canvassing' the neighborhood talking to people.

Anyway...I just needed to get that off my chest. Kris is emailing the police chief, mostly I think to make me feel better because he can hear all my anxious sighing over here and knows neither one of us will sleep if I can't calm down.

What's wrong with me???

I've gone a whole week without making a quilt-what is wrong with me?
Oh yeah...I have pretty much worked non-stop! The only day 'off' I had was Friday and I spent the entire day cooking and cleaning getting ready for Abbey's birthday party. On Saturday, I went to a wedding and worked for 4 1/2 hours. I went to church and then worked again for 4 1/2 hours on Sunday. And I feel like I haven't stopped since. Tonight I decided I wasn't going to work extra after I got home and that I would cut the pieces for Abbey's quilt (which is going to be really cute by the way). Well, I didn't work...but I didn't cut material either. Maybe tomorrow...
I haven't felt like blogging lately. I keep coming up with cute/funny stories from my children and think "I need to write that down" and then I just don't do it. It annoys me now that I can't remember any of it. I do have a funny picture though. When I got home today Katherine had decorated the house for Halloween. Outside the house, that is. We did have to scold her for coloring on the side of the house with chalk, though her pictures were cute. The second picture you will see was just really a strange and funny site. You have to understand, Katherine is constantly bugging me to buy Halloween decorations. She seems to really like that holiday in particular. Well, apparently we didn't have enough decorations so she created some of her own.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Another quilt, another blog...

I promised there wouldn't be another blog about Brandi's quilt. And to stay true to that promise, this is not about Brandi's quilt, but about Katherine's quilt. She turned 8 on Sunday and I bought her some material to make a quilt for her. She loves Tinkerbell, so of course that is the theme we chose to use. There are a TON of imperfections in this quilt. I am SO thrilled that I didn't run into the same problems on Brandi's quilt-really-it's about Katherine's quilt! I swear! I had a lot of trouble with this quilt-between my machine being tempermental and somehow ending up with extra material on the top of the quilt, which led to 'bubbling' as I call it. In addition, the top stitch I chose was very tricky to work with and I probably will not use it again without a significant amount of experience with it. And on top of all that, the batting was pinned down when I started but somehow along the way I lost a pin in one corner so the batting bunched up...anyway...I am thankful that I was making this for Katherine and not for someone outside of my immediate family because I fear they would be disappointed with the outcome. Forntunately for me you cannot really see the imperfections in the pictures so I am posting them. Kris and I are both pleased with the pattern we came up with and the colors really represent Katherine and what she likes. Overall and from a distance I really like the quilt. It is just up close that I am pretty disappointed with it and am not skilled enough to really know how to fix it and I am certainly not patient enough to take it apart and start again!!

What do you think?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Lucky for you...

...this is probably the last post about this Very Hungry Catepillar quilt. But since I just finished it, I wanted to show off the finished product. I can't wait to give it to Brandi!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Different views

Here are some other quilts people have made with the "Very Hungry Catepillar" material. Personally I am not a fan of any of them, though I can at least tolerate the first one. I like mine better.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

It's not mine...

Kris had to remind me that the quilt is not mine. That's right Jamie. It is NOT yours! It is Brandi's. She bought the material. You cannot keep it. No matter how cute you think it is!

I am about 1/3 of the way done with the top stitching. It's getting really close now. My hip was starting to hurt though so I decided to stop for the evening. But here are some pictures of my progress. I am quite pleased with how it is turning out.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

An almost finished quilt

I made really good progess the last two nights and have the top of Brandi's quilt done. I have quite a bit of work left still between putting the backing on and all of the top stitching but it feels great to have accomplished my goal and 'finished' the top of a quilt again. It's been over 3 years since I have been able to say that. What do you think?

My funny funny girl...

All of my kids have this ability to make me laugh. Things they say, things they do...they are just funny. God designed them this way. Today's funny story is about Katherine. Last year when she lost a tooth and wrote a note to the tooth fairy I posted pictures on my other blog so everyone could enjoy her thought process regarding her lost tooth. The tooth was literally LOST. We could not find it. Here are her notes to the tooth fairy-one was taped to her bed and the other on the dresser. This story sets up the next one.

(In case you can't see it, it says "Dear Tooth Fairy. I Lost My Tooth. But When I Noticed I did I Could Not Find It So I just Wanted To Tell You. Love Kat."

With that in mind, let me just tell you what happened this weekend. Katherine lost another tooth. She actually lost the tooth on Saturday and we came home and put it in a ziploc bag for safe keeping. At bedtime she thought about putting it under her pillow, but decided she wanted to show it to people at church on Sunday. And then she decided she wanted to take it to school to show people. So finally, last night, she decides it is time to put it under her pillow. When she went downstairs the tooth was in a normal ziploc bag.

Before going to bed, the 'Tooth Fairy' went downstairs to exchange her tooth for the highly inflated fee of $1. She (the Tooth Fairy) grabbed the bag and put the $1 under Katherine's pillow. As I (I mean she) was coming back upstairs Kris said "You should've just put the $1 in the bag and left the bag" or something to that effect. I shrugged it off and then immediately something on the bag caught my eye. Apparently when she went downstairs for bed, Katherine decided it would be necessary to write the Tooth Fairy another note. Here is what she wrote on the bag with her tooth in it. There are so many things I could say, but I really feel it needs no explanation.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Let's talk about passion...

There is something to be said for passion, or for being passionate about something. Take me for instance. I am passionate about The Pampered Chef. I am passionate about food. I am extremely passionate about the dessert 'section' of food! I am passionate about my children. And yes, sometimes I am even passionate about my husband! ;-)

But one thing I am NOT passionate about, besides the obvious choice of laundry, is vacuum cleaners. They just don't 'do' anything for me. And if a vacuum cleaner demo takes 2 1/2 hours, what does that tell you about the vacuum cleaner? IT'S COMPLICATED. If I can't sweep it across my floor (or have my kids do it) in 5 minutes, it is SO not worth my time...and moreso...my money. And if you want to accuse me of being an irresponsible parent because I use a dry filtration system over a wet filtration system, well...go right ahead (well, please don't because I might just cry). You aren't going to hurt my feelings (yes you will). So, I am sorry Direct-Sell-Rainbow-Vacuum-Cleaner...you are just not the vacuum cleaner for me...and you really don't fit into my budget (perhaps a toothpick would fit). Don't get me wrong-I will support the Direct Selling industry whenever I am able and if you have a LOT of time and energy to spend assembling and disassembling, filling and emptying water, adding this and adding that...IN ADDITION to the actual time it will take to vacuum the floor, well then perhaps the Rainbow IS the vacuum for you.

What we need is a vacuum cleaner that is LIKE the Rainbow with all of it's features and attachments, COMBINED with the technology of the Roomba that will vacuum the floor for lazy people (like me and Kris)...you put those two together...and count me in!

I realize I haven't blogged for a while, and actually have more I wanted to share, but Kris is eager to watch House. We're almost finished with Season 3. We only have time for one episode tonight and with this infection I've been fighting for over 10 days I really SHOULD go to bed, but I just can't resist watching at least ONE tonight. Hopefully I will update beyond the scope of vacuums soon.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Three years ago tomorrow...

...I was in the hospital giving birth to my beautiful, curly-haired Olivia Morgan. My 'baby' will be three tomorrow. And true to form it is going to be a unique birthday. That girl, much like Abbey Rose marches to the beat of her own drum! It might seem strange to some, but in our family, the plans for tomorrow are perfectly normal and didn't surprise any of us, though we were very amused at the thought.

Ok, ever since she could EAT...Livvy has LOVED LOVED LOVED cereal. Any kind. She just loves cereal. She would eat it for every single meal if allowed. She would eat it for dessert. She just loves to eat cereal. It's really funny. It doesn't matter-no matter what-if you ask her what she would like to eat, 9 time out of 10 she will tell you cereal. The girl LOVES her cereal! All that being said, our fancy birthday dinner tomorrow night to celebrate our little one's 3rd birthday will consist of...


I couldn't be more thrilled! Given that I struggle to cook most days anyway, I am loving that my baby wants cereal for her birthday dinner. She chose Rice Krispies as her cereal of choice. Isn't that funny? The cake is baking now--just a plain boxed yellow cake mix with chocolate frosting. Ahh...I love it!

Today was a good day. Aside from being completely cloudy from all the rain, the temperature was close to perfect!! I really wish I had GOOD windows in my house that I could open to let the air circulate. My windows either do not have screens, or just aren't where you need them to be to enjoy the beautiful, crisp, fall air. Some day...

Let's take a little trip down memory lane...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Not so sure about this whole school bus thing

I interacted with another human being tonight. It was nice.

I hardly ever get outside of my home anymore unless I am working. But one of the only neighbors I like was outside on her swing tonight so I decided to go chat with her for a few minutes. We had a nice conversation and then her daughter started talking about something my son did on the bus this morning.

I wasn't there, so I don't know the whole story, but I listened to the girl and later confirmed with Kaleb that it had happened. Apparently there were two older boys-5th grade possibly-who were telling Kaleb to touch this little girl in inappropriate places. And my son desperately longing to fit and being 'silly' went against what he knew was right and did what they told him to do.

This upsets me. On so many different levels. First of all, why are these other kids even thinking about that? Second, why are they trying to entice a FIRST GRADER to participate? Third, why is MY son listening to them? Fourth...I could go on and on...

I talked to Kaleb about it-told him up front he wasn't in trouble but I wanted him to tell me the truth. He told me they told him to hit this girl and I kept pressing him and he told me what I already heard from the little girl. We talked about it and I told him it worried me that he listened to those boys and that I know he wants to fit it and make friends but those are the kind of people I want him being influenced by. He listened and nodded and seemed to really take in what I was saying.

And then he made me very proud. He suggested (all on his own) that he should sit up in the front of the bus, even though that would mean he couldn't sit with Katherine and her friend Rebecca because they always sit in the back. I thought that was a great suggestion and the fact the he had that idea all on his own really made me proud. He was thinking ahead! He was trying to figure out how he could avoid the situation! What a good boy. I told him I would talk to Katherine about sitting up front, even if it meant that Rebecca didn't sit with her, though I would hope that Rebecca would still sit with Katherine. So Kris and I are going to talk to the kids to re-emphasize that what was happening was not right and Kris will stay down at the bus stop to make sure all three of our kids sit near the front of the bus.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Cops and Robbers. Fairies and Indians. Same difference.

Today was an absolutely CRAZY (there's my favorite word again...) day at work. I worked on the same problem claim for over 2 hours today (more mentally). It was really draining (I've decided to put lots of things in parentheses today apparently!).
And then I stepped outside. Oh the weather! Perhaps it was a little dreary. Perhaps it was wet and rainy. Perhaps most people would have rather been inside. But something about the weather today lifted my heart. I thought it was just the PERFECT temperature. I'm not sure it really got much above 70 degrees today and the fact that there was a nice breeze and the sun was nowhere in sight made me long for FALL! It was like a fall day today and I could feel the difference. I could feel the weight of the last several weeks lift from me. I felt so strange...so...good! It's a rare feeling.

I was eager to DO something today. This is a good thing. If you know nothing about depression, know that those caught in the claws of it find it extremely difficult to do normal everyday things. Getting out of bed is difficult. Taking a shower is difficult. Cooking is difficult. 'Dealing' with anything at all is difficult. Living life in general is just extremely difficult. Lately I've struggled to do anything I normally do. Grocery shopping for example. I hadn't gone to the grocery store in oh, maybe 5 weeks. I used to go every week to two weeks. We were down to ice and a couple of frozen corn dogs. It was pretty bad. We had been eating out a lot. The other day though Kris and I took all the kids and finally got groceries! I suggested to Kris that we get a lot of 'easy' meals because I didn't want to spend our money on hamburger and chicken and things like that that only I knew how to cook, on the off chance that I didn't 'feel' like cooking. So we bought a lot of frozen things, lunchables for the kids, pizzas. It's pathetic I know-but it's the reality of where I am at right now. Kris has had to shoulder quite a bit lately.

Where was I going with all that? Oh yeah...the beautiful (to me anyway) fall weather we had this afternoon. Because I actually felt like doing something, I decided to take advantage of that and when the older kids got home from school we loaded up and drove to Dollar Tree. This wasn't in the original plans-the original plan was to go get a Redbox movie (I had a free coupon) for family movie night, which we try to do on a weekly basis. Kaleb still had $10 birthday money and he wanted to take that with him, so I decided I felt up to taking my kids to Dollar Tree. Kaleb said everyone could spend $2. The boy is SO possessive of his 'stuff' including money, but he is SO generous at the same time.

Here's my theory with Dollar Tree. Well it's probably not technically a theory or anything but who cares. This is my blog and I'll call it whatever I want! ;-) Kris and I decided a couple of years ago it was pointless to waste our money on expensive toys that will just get broken, lost, or remain 'unplayed' with. We decided to start doing the majority of our Christmas and birthday shopping at Dollar Tree. The kids are young enough that they still really LOVE the toys from Dollar Tree and we will get away with it for as long as they will let us!
So the kids all found themselves some 'treasures' at Dollar Tree today and I have pictures below of my beautiful fairies and my little Indian. After Dollar Tree I took the kids to Sonic for a little snack and slushes, then we headed to get the movie from Redbox. When we got home we actually cleaned up the living room, which has also been extremely difficult for me lately. But I propped my front door open (don't ask-it needs replaced) so the breeze could come in and we set to work. It was the first 'real' work I've done around the house in WAY TOO LONG! Kris loaded the dishwasher for me when he got home and I even managed to bake some cookies. Baking is a cook sign in the change in my moods! I think Kris was pleased with the 'new' me (or perhaps it is truly the 'real' me), however short-lived it may be. I know the kids benefited and saw a difference! It felt good to enjoy them today. We watched "Nim's Island" for movie night, which turned out to be a fairly enjoyable movie. Then the kids went to bed and here I am. I primarily wanted to put the pictures of my adorable kids on here-but felt you needed an extremely long explanation for the pictures. Most things are cheap and break easily from Dollar Tree but if you need some GREAT fairy wings, I suggest $1 at Dollar Tree! Every little girl will LOVE them and they are actually quite impressive on the quality!