Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The cornrows are in and the reviews are mixed. I have heard "slap me some skin!", I have been told they look good. I do have to say that I did get an education into the world of cornrows.
When my sister made the appointment they told her 2 1/2 hours for my hair and to get her hair colored it would be 2 hours. It is the Professional Hair Design School so there is a major discount since we are what the students are learning and practicing on.
I soon figured out that it was not going to be a mere 2 1/2 hours, (boy was I naive!). By the time my sister was done with her 2 hour dye job and was getting toward the half way mark. The total time was 4 1/2 hours of someone yanking on my hair. My kids hate it with the exception of Rara who says it's not too bad. Dad and one of my dad's employees who knows the family thinks that I look like Bo Derek. My dad's wife says I should take it our NOW because it makes my head look fat.
I am not going to keep it in too long. It is itchy, driving me nuts that I can't wash my hair well, and tighter feeling than I expected but I will go to church with it in anyway. At least it is Wacky Wednesday for the kids so I can just say I dressed up for it. Knight is undecided on what he thinks or wants to be kind. He thinks I should leave it in for up to a week, but he doesn't like the feel of this compared to my normal hair.
Live and learn. I am glad I did it once and I have to thank Gina for that! So here are the picts...

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

This weekend was nice. Sunday at church we had a service for three of our young men being deployed to Iraq. Beautiful service, lots of prayer for them and their families. Monday we went out and watched a softball tournament, played a little then went to a grill out at a friends. It was a really good time. J-Bird was able to have some "testosterone time" as their were boys to play with. (He's the one in the middle) Overall a great weekend.
Today I am off to get my hair done with my sister. She's getting her hair colored and I'm getting corn rows done. Knight has wanted to see me in corn rows so she is making it happen. I don't know how long I will dare keep it in, but I'll get pictures!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

What did He die For

Freedom has a enormous price. It's not pretty. But if we fail to learn from our history we are doomed to repeat it.
Thinking of the troops now and those who's price will not be forgotten by me.

Friday, May 25, 2007

He came into my life when I was around 11. He was one that was always ready for some fun. He was always smiling, ready to entertain "the troops" of my sisters and I. My oldest sister met him at the bowling alley on Fort Lewis. He was a GI and she was engaged at the time. As it turned out, not for long. His name was Ken. He eventually became my brother in law.

He came into my life at the perfect time. Soon my parents split up, my dad moved to Korea, and chaos took over our house. Literally.

I know that Ken didn't add a calming effect to the family. He was an only child who never made us younger kids feel like he didn't want us around. We were his sisters. He was our brother. I had always wanted a big brother and this one I didn't fight with. He taught us things and gave us experiences that I will always treasure but would have made my mom (and probably my sister, his wife) flip out.

He taught us about green beer on St. Patricks day. He taught us what off roading was. He lied to my sister and told her that he was taking me and Gina to the movies for my 13th birthday and took me to the waterfront where all the other GI's hung out. Really, he taught me how to party. He also included his friends but he made it very clear to them that "his sisters" were off limits and castration would be in order if they chose to break that (no matter how much WE liked his friends!) We felt safe, loved, and included.

When Gina and I ran away we called him. And when mom discovered we were gone he lied to her to give us time to figure out what we wanted to do. Then he convinced us to go home. He would tell me how important school was, help with homework, and try to convince me that boring things like the cotton gin were important things to learn. I still know that Ely Whitney invented the cotton gin because of that argument! It's funny, because I'm now teaching the same stuff to my kids and loving history.
Eventually he got out of the Army (joined the reserves instead) and they moved to SC. They had two beautiful kids together before things didn't work out for their marriage. My sister got tired of the party attitude. After 9/11 he rejoined the Army and became stationed in Germany. Then he was deployed to Iraq.

He was injured. Saw horrible things but made it through 2 tours before they sent him home to Germany. He came back and spent some time with the kids (not really kids, but teens) before going home. Three months later he was taken from this earth. His physical body buried at Arlington, on his daughters 16th birthday.

I miss him. I thank God that I let him know how much I still cared and how much he touched my life when I still had a chance. He is still my brother.

I have been thinking about memorial day and all the sacrifices so many have made so I am able to live the life I choose. I grew up an AF brat and know well the emotions of my dad going away for weeks, months, and years. I know the toll it took on mom to be a married single-parent. I know the troops sacrifice their time, their family, and potentially their health and life. Thanks to all who make that sacrifice for me and my family. We are praying for the troops and their families.

A friend came over yesterday so I could make a swim suit for her daughter. Her daughter is uncomfortable with how immodest swimsuits are and she likes the way the swimsuits I make look and feel and yet are modest.
Knight would like me to start an Internet business selling them. I am unsure if this would be a good way to make some money.
This is Rara's newest swimsuit that I made in Jan. The skirt ended up a little short but I have fixed that in swimsuits made since then. I have made these with and without sleeves and with and without the skirt so I could give people the choice those plus choice of fabric if I would actually have a website otherwise I could just make them and put them on eBay. Opinions??? Prices??? I am really torn on what to do.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Driving around yesterday doing erands the kids and I got into a conversation about snow, rain and the drought summers we have experienced for the last few summers.

We have seen the crops dry up, useless. We've seen the maple leaves turn color in August for lack of rain. We have only had to mow our grass maybe a total of 5 times for the summer. It has been bad.

I let them know that some of the farmers were going to loose their farms if we had another bad summer like we've had. As we were driving we looked at the freshly plowed fields and you could tell that even the dirt was way too dry. There have been rumors of rain in the past couple of weeks but it always seems to miss us or just sprinkle a little.

As we drove around in the sunshine J-Bell decides to pray for rain. I have seen God prove himself to my children through their prayers and thought "I guess it will rain soon."

We finish up, get home and I start working on the front porch putting new intertubes in the bikes. Within an hour of coming home we get rain. Not a quiet drizzle, a downpour that causes the road to have two rivers running by our house, and the kids taking all their treasures in the basement in case a tornado forms in the storm. The storm let up, but the rain did not. This morning it is still raining.

I love to watch the Lord become more and more real to my kids.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

There is a heritage museum in our area that has items and buildings of the past from around the area to show us all how "they" used to live. As a final activity for school we went and learned. We hadn't been there in a couple years and the kids had a better appreciation this time. We ran out of time to see it all but the people there offered us passes to come back this summer and finish the tour.

We were all surprised at the size of the homestead cabins. They were tiny! This one room cabin housed a family of 9.

J-Bell is standing in the middle of it. To save some room the boys slept in the attic. To get there, they went outsice and up the ladder on the side of the house. I have heard that WI winters were worse than they are now. I can't imagine sending the boys out in the snow to sleep in the attic.

The kids also learned what a chamber pot was. They were not impressed and really grossed out with the idea of someone having to clean it. Even potty training, we put the kid seat on the toilet so no one had to clean out the potty chair.

They also were not impressed with the bathtubs.

The highlight was the jail and the stocks. The kids love being locked up in jail and then having their picture taken while in the stocks. Am I raising little convicts????

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I'm back! After getting back into town and being reprimanded for not updating the blog in so long, here I am with my story of our overnight date!

On Sunday Knight called my dad and asked if he and his wife could take our kids overnight so we could go to the Twin Cities in MN for a date. They rearranged their schedules last minute so they could have the kids. I am so thankful for their willingness to have our kids and that they make us feel like they are happy to do it. Thanks guys!

We booked a room in a hotel that has theme rooms. I had this idea of surprising Knight by going there a year ago but I never did it. They have a deal that for $99 they pick the room. It saves some good money and you still get the theme room. You don't find out what room until you get there but still fun.

They gave us the "Eastern Winds" room. Oriental decorations, a Buddha statue, a whirlpool tub that was HUGE, and a mirror surrounded bed. Overall, not bad. A little tacky. Put the suitcase in front of the fat little man and he can't stare at us anymore. The only thing that was really not my thing was the mirrors. Who wants to roll over in the morning, look up, and see themselves. Yeah, I know other people may enjoy the mirror thing. I am not one that needs to be reminded of my "fluff" while in bed.

For dinner we went out for pizza. Take a quick little trip in the same suburb, add a "highway" that splits from the road and a couple that misses the sign and you end up driving through two more suburbs before going back and finding where we missed the turn. We drove, semi lost for a while, but had no pressing things to do, kids in the back asking where we are, and we saw housing complexes you don't see in these parts. We do find the place and it is well worth the drive. Best deep dish I have had. Ever. If you are in the Cities, find a Divannis Pizza. You will not be disappointed.

In the morning I was awakened by the bath running and the TV coming on. Knight had let me sleep in, at least according to him. I joined the bath, we talked about what we wanted to do. Then the electricity dies. We are in a room with no windows, designed like a cave in a bath so deep you have to crawl on the side of the tub to be able to get down. No stepping gently onto the floor, and no stairs to the tub. Just a two and a half foot high, 18 inch wide tiled wall that I have to get out of in the dark. We get out, get dressed, and figure out what to do. There were a few stores to hit but we were taking our time. Still no electricity. As we go to check our we are able to listen to some woman (she was no lady) demanding a refund because she cannot get ready for the day without electricity. I am sure the hot water still works at least for a little while. But what do I know. We say nothing and the clerk gives us a coupon for $20 off next time.

As we drive out of the parking lot, I look at the clock for the first time. It's 8:30am. I am not a morning person and I am thinking to myself...what do you mean you let me sleep in????

We shopped a little, and found this candy store where we picked up some for the kids. They had dried bugs there. Crickets and larvae. Real bugs. They also had suckers with these little gems in them. Apparently I am naive because I ask what you are supposed to do when you get down to the bug. Eat it. The boxes of dried bugs are really for eating too. Some lady goes into this particular store and buys them out every couple of weeks so she has some for her salads. It adds protein. The bugs is their number 1 seller at the store. Not chocolate. Not Jelly Belly. Bugs. Why not just add chicken to your salad to get protein???

At breakfast Knight noticed the multiple shades of my hair. He had asked me to stop dying a year ago. It was very much two different colors but not in the beautiful highlight way. Think roots. Big time. After looking for a while all he says is "you can dye it if you want." I hear, "Oh, I now see why you dye it. You are right, your natural color is not the best on you. I also see those grey intruders you have talked about. Cover it. All of it. Please!"

We pick up the kids, visit for a while, get home, and then I run out and get hair dye. My hair is back to boxed perfection, we are home, and I have caught up on the blogs.

I'm back. Paradise.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Thursday Thirteen...

Here are thirteen things that I want but for various reasons I can't or don't have

1. A tattoo the length of my spine. (I don't have any tatts)

2. A Palm Pilot

3. A MP3 Player

4. A Ski boat

5. A house on the river to ski on

6. Plane tickets (see last Thursday)

7. A landscaped yard (I hate weeding, dirt, and waiting for things to grow. Landscaping is something I don't even attempt)

8. Someone to build me my table that I am going to attempt to build soon

9. The real tools to build this table (so I don't have to make due)

10. A hobby farm

11. A clean house

12. A house with insulation

13. For my kids to stay the ages that they are. They are getting too big too fast. With no teens, no diapers. This stage is perfect.
Look what I found cleaning! It's special not only because it is a $20 but because it is a "small head". I love to show the kids what money looked like when I was a kid. It makes me feel old

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

It is finally rainy and cold here. Not enough rain, but I can still justify being inside all day cleaning. Well, not all day. J-Bell had a school band concert. You know I wouldn't want to miss that!

So pretty much all day I have holed myself up in the classroom. I am putting away the school books since I won't be needing them anymore this school year (yeah!!!), putting some books away that have gotten out of place, and finishing organizing the library.
My goal is to get through the classroom completely by June 1. That means sorting, organizing, and tackling the closet and file cabinet.
All the pictures are of my 4 bookcases after I donated, threw out, and packed away the ones I don't wish to have available at my fingertips. Picasa even cut off two shelves of one of the bookcases when it made the picture grid.
Can anyone guess what my passion is? I have way too many books and yet if I go to a garage sale or goodwill I find myself going through the books. Yes, I have a problem. So here I am to say, Hi. I'm De, and I'm addicted to books!

Monday, May 14, 2007

You know what makes me proud? Living in Wisconsin. Whenever something in Wisconsin makes national news it is something like this---

ELDERON, Wis. - Around here, it may be tough to pass up anything
deep-fried. Wisconsinites have deep-fried cheese curds, candy bars and
Twinkies. They now have deep-fried livestock testicles, too.
More than 300 people paid $5 for all-you-can-eat goat, lamb and bull testicles Saturday at
the ninth annual Testicle Festival at Mama's Place Bar and Grill in Elderon
in central Wisconsin.
"Once you get over the mental (aspect) of what you're eating, it's just like eating any other food, and it tastes good," Buster Hoffman said.
The event grew every year and now they fry up to 100 pounds of testicles, she said.
"What else can you do in a small town?" Fenske said.
Butch Joubert, 58, likes the parts sandwiched between bread with tartar sauce. They're not so different from regular meatballs also served at the festival, he said.
"After a few beers, you can't really tell the difference," Joubert said.

Or This---

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. - Attempts to duplicate a movie stunt landed one man in the
hospital with burned genitals and another facing criminal charges.
The men
were trying to do a stunt from one of the “Jackass” movies, in which a character
lights his genitals on fire.
Jared W. Anderson, 20, suffered serious burns to
his hands and genitals, according to the criminal complaint. Randell D.
Peterson, 43, who sprayed lighter fluid on Anderson and lit him on fire, was
charged with felony battery and first-degree reckless endangerment Tuesday in
Eau Claire County Court.

Who wouldn't want to stand up proud and say--I'm from Wisconsin!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mothers Day!

In honor of all of us out there that are mothers I thought I would spotlight Life in a Shoe for my Sunday Spotlight. She is a homeschooling mother of 8! She has a link for Saturday Kid Comedy so people can share kids stories. I really enjoy her blog because it is pretty random.

Have a great Mothers day. I have to go enjoy my cards.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Last night during family devotions I had to laugh when it came time for the kids to pray

J-Bell--"Lord, thank you for the nice weather, even though it was a little too hot... And please help me to stop complaining..." (she was not even noticing she was complaining in her prayer)

J-Bird--"Lord, thanks for the day. And help J-Bell stop being so bossy when she's babysitting..."

Rara found a shortcut so she doesn't have to think about prayer requests..."Lord, help everyone who needs help..."

Desti has now started using this tactic too.

Who couldn't enjoy kids like these?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

13 Countries I would love to visit

1. Italy, (Pompeii, and Rome)

2. Egypt (the Pyramids)

3. Australia (The Outback)

4. Micronesia (Yap)

5. Palau (Koror)

6. Fiji

7. France

8. Germany

9. Greece (I'd like to go back to Crete)

10. Galapagos

11. New Guinea

12. Mexico (Baja)

13. Kenya

Anyone notice I did not say anything about skiing the Alps, being snow bound anywhere. If I want to see a penguin or polar bear I will go to a zoo!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Ok people. Put one hand over your mouse and say with me...

I will not forward emails or post blogs that...

--Have some sob story about a little girl and "every time someone forwards this" the Red Cross is going to take $2 off the hospital bill

--Threaten that now that I've read this I need to re-post it or my account will be canceled. This is the only way to see who still uses this site

--I am not going to believe that anyone will give me a gift certificate just for forwarding an email

--I don't believe luck has anything to do with forwarding emails, no matter how quickly I can click on those 12 friends

--I also don't believe God watches emails to find out who really believes in Him

--I know that the government isn't going to tax my emails no matter how many forwards go out about it

--If you have something to send me, copy and paste it. I don't want to scroll past 156 names on the way to the message

Also, remember it is not a sin to DELETE.

Thank you so much

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Thanks you all for your prayers for Gina. I know it means a lot to all of the family. I saw her yesterday and she seemed to be healing will and accepting this new change to her lifestyle. She had Ileostomy surgery and she had known that she may need this eventually because of her health but what started as a test became emergency surgery. A shock to us all. As one of my other sisters put our feelings into words so well, "We are going to get ulcers from all this hospital stuff." This is the 4th hospitalization in the last 16 months for my family. We are hoping to be done talking to hospital staff for a long time.

J-Bird got done with school today. That makes it 2 down and 2 more to go. We should be done with school some time next week. I have heard so many moms dread the end of the school year because that means the kids come home. I look forward to it, so I have more time to actually have fun with them. I have some fun stuff planned this summer and I hope to get a jump start on science.

Now I am off the the library. I need to make copies. Fun, fun. Kids are at the park so I need to pick them up. I promise I will be better and blogging soon and the my post will be a whole lot more interesting than this.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Thinking about my younger years brings a lot of memories. Some I am willing to share and plenty of others I just have to look at my "partner in crime" and we both remember those things y0u hate for your kids to find out. Most of my life I have had that same person as my "partner in crime", Gina. Anyone will tell you that she is the kindest person you will ever meet. She will do anything she can for those she loves. She is honest, hardworking, loyal, sweet. I have also seen her wild side. We have broken into construction sites to look around, crashed parties, sneaking out (don't tell Dad!), and mostly just hung out. Because of our births she is my sister. Because of choice she is my best friend. She had surgery yesterday that will hopefully stop her medical problems. She has been suffering for years and her body has paid the price. Surgery went well, but this will change an aspect of her life forever. She is 33. Hopefully the pros will greatly outweigh the cons. I am so thankful that the Lord gave us doctors that can assist Him in healing her.
Toni over at Special K Family has started having Spotlight Sundays so I decided it would be fun to join her and let everyone know who in the blogging world I love reading about. I would have put a button up but it is 2am and I don't want to figure it out. Maybe by next Sunday.

For my first Sunday Spotlight I am highlighting Catching Butterflies. This is an adoption blog that has been extremely interesting to me. They have just went to pick up their little girl in China a couple of weeks ago and she is blogging about how Sarah is accepting her new family. It has been a real roller coaster of emotions. I am so thankful she is so honest in how it is going. It has helped me understand better the different ways the Lord forms families.

Thanks Toni for the great idea.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

This is what you would have heard if you were at my house this morning...

Desti-Mom, do people really like Reddi whip on waffles?
D-Can we try it?

Then Desti, Rara, and J-Bird sit down with their waffles deciding they like syrup better.

Rara and Desti go up to shower and get cleaned up for the day. J-Bird is still looking for more food...

J-Can I have some Reddi Whip?
M-No, we don't need to eat that plain.
J-Can I have a piece of cake then.
M-No. Cake is not something for breakfast. Did you forget that we are trying to make healthier food choices?
J-Oohhh, yaaah. I forgot!
M-We have apples in the fridge...
J (coming back out from the kitchen after looking for a healthier snack) Can I have a Little Debbie snack?

I think I should work harder teaching the food pyramid.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Today I'm wondering...WHY???

*Can you hear the whining yet?*

Why on one of my busiest weeks on the calendar do I get horribly sick?

Why did I take Excedrin migraine last night at 11pm hoping that it would break this stupid fever forgetting that it has caffeine which kept me up until 6am?

Why did Aunt Flo have to wake me up at 7am?

Why did this all have to happen when I am scheduled to run Track and Field night tonight for our final home school group meeting? (*HINT* Grandparents and Aunts welcome *HINT*)

Why did Aunt Flo have to come early while I am still sick, adding insult to injury?

Why does all of this happen on a week that I'm trying to fast from being a grump?


Because, I need to know that it is not my strength getting me through the days. It's His.

Exodus 15:2 - The Lord is my strength and my song, and He has become my salvation; He is my God, and I will praise Him.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

I was tagged by Toni at In the Midst of this Season for another meme! She has a great writing style and is one of my daily reads.

Here's how it works, I’ll write 10 facts about me and/or habits of mine.- I’ll tag 10 people.- If you’ve been tagged, you do your own list and tag 10 more people. (”No tag backs.”)

1. If I want to develop a habit in my, I use a reward system. My one right now is "No blogging before Bible". This forces me to get into my Bible and Bible study first thing in the morning. I don't break these rules.

2. I will not leave my house without showering even if I just have to run to the store and pick up something for a project that will make me dirty. I shower, go to the store, get dirty, and take another shower. When I am home all day, I may not take a shower until the afternoon or evening but I get one in.

3. I like people, hate crowds. I love to talk, but only to people I know well. I would rather be in a crowd of strangers than in a crowd of friends. Figure that one out.

4. I don't really think more than 6 months into the future. I don't have long term plans and goals. I do have some thoughts into what I want to do when the kids leave, but I don't think very often of that at all.

5. I can not think of one person that I have a grudge against. There have been people that have hurt me, but I don't spend energy into thinking bad about them. This has taken some time.

6. I love to be involved with things but I hate to be a leader. I would much rather help out and nobody know. I don't even want public credit given, ever. I rarely volunteer, but I love to be asked to help.

7. I was born in Brindisi, Italy and have lived in San Antonio, TX-- Crete, Greece-- Panama City, Florida-- Tacoma, WA-- Las Vegas, NV-- and a couple places in WI. We always came back to WI between places so home is my Grandma and Grampas' house. It has this smell. Not of old people, but this totally unique smell in her garage that all of us cousins know well, but Grandma has no idea what we are talking about.

8. I met my husband at a family get together. We are not related in the least, but we do have mutual first cousins.

9. All of my and 3 of Knights grandparents are still alive. My kids know most of their great grandparents, all of their grandparents, all of their cousins, and all of their aunts, and all but one of their uncles. He is now their uncle (married my sister) but they live far enough away that they have not met him yet. We have been truly blessed. They even know a lot of their 2nd cousins and great aunts and uncles.

10. I listen to the radio in the car, but at home I listen to Fine Tune most of the time. At fine tune you make a play list with the songs you pick (45) and they play them at random.

Now I tag...
1. Molly at Doodles from Dahls because she completely ignored a previous tag
2. Kris at Lessons from Kris because she hasn't been assigned much to blog lately
3. Jen at The Work Site because she hasn't been blogging regularly (again)
4. Melody at Slurping Life because I always love to here what she has to say
5. Amy at Laughing Through the Tears because she loves meme's
6. Laura at Busy Bees because she is a new blogger
7. JoGirl at Can we Build it because I love her
8. Desti at Destiny's Discoveries because she is the one mostly devoted to her blog
9. Keri at Plans and Providence because I don't talk to her enough (I need to see if she is still alive)
10. Karen at For Such a Time as Now because I like her blog

Happy Blogging!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Today we went on a spontaneous field trip. One of Knights accounts told him that the Lake Sturgeon were running and we could go see them in a town about 35 minutes from our house. Knight called me and I loaded the kids up and headed out. We didn't know it would be so difficult to find but we did find it.
So we went down this dirt road into the dead end, up a hill, through a field, down a cliff (seriously) to the river. Then we hiked a little ways but we found it.
I have never been to a fish run. It was really neat. The fish were about 4 feet long (at least the ones we saw) and doing their best to get up the rapids. Very cool. There was even a DNR warden handing out fliers on the Sturgeon so we could learn more. I asked her how long it lasts and she said 24 hours. We made it just in time. The really started to slow down by the time we left. I also learned that if you want to take a picture of something under the water you can take a picture through polarized sunglasses. It worked for me. So for the pictures, the brownish one that looks like it has a log in the middle of the picture... that's one of the sturgeon under water.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

5 minutes for mom is having a Mothers Day contest. The first one is great. An ipod. Can you believe that? That has been on my wish list forever.
Knight and I broke down and purchased what we thought we would never purchase.

We were planning to go to Action City yesterday because it was supposed to rain. It's expensive but fun. It is hard to spend a lot of money on it because you have nothing but pictures in the end, but we were wanting some family fun.

We decided to give the kids a choice. Action City, or a new family toy. They chose the toy.

So Knight and I went and bought it. Me and the 3 smaller kids spent the afternoon putting it together while Knight and J-Bell loaded truck. Since J-Bell was the one who loaded truck she was the first one who was able to use it.

I had trouble sleeping last night because I am so sore after putting it together but it is worth it. The kids played all evening until bedtime and then were up two hours earlier than normal and back playing.

Wondering what it is yet? It's our new...