Saturday, June 30, 2007

Sixty six years. Today Knights grandparents are celebrating 66 years of marital bliss. I cannot wrap my brain around that. I know it's not that strange. In fact both of my grandparents are still married to their original spouses as well.

We are going down to help them celebrate later today. We have not seen as much of the family as we would like so it should be a good time. We haven't seen our cousins for way too long. For some it's been a couple years. That is sad since most or all are still within a 2 hour drive. Not sure who all will be there.

On caterpillar watch--Esther has made her chrysalis. We checked on her this morning and she was still hanging. An hour later when we went back, she was already done. So much for watching nature at work. The other caterpillar attached itself to the top of the bug barn and then died a day later. I guess that's something else the kids had to learn.

Time to get ready for Grandmas. Hope you all are looking forward to great things in July!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

I have proof that I don't need to feel flattered but Knight telling me he loves my cooking. It should make me feel good. At times I have felt pretty adequate in the kitchen.

Until last night.

We went last night to do some merchandising but before that he wanted to run to the grocery store that had Gatorade on sale. The man loves his Gatorade. If he finds it for a dollar for a 32oz he thinks he's doing well. This store has had it cheaper yet. I should have known better from past experience how much he would get. Thankfully he had cash so he was limited to only buying 23 bottles.

Anyway...before that we stopped at Culver's for a bite of ice cream. 1 scoop sundae comes with 2 toppings of your choice. This man has never ordered a sundae from Culver's before. The first thing he saw that looked good was raspberries. But he couldn't just have one topping. No, that would have been wasteful. So he looks at the menu again. Then he spots it. It is his favorite. Reese's pieces. That is what he chose to have for a second topping.

He couldn't figure out why I was gagging watching him eat a raspberry and Reese's pieces sundae. He said it was good. He tried to convince me that they probably sold plenty of that combo everyday.

I don't think I should be flattered that he likes my cooking. Look at what he is willing to eat. Maybe I'm just a food snob.

In other news Esther the caterpillar has gotten huge! Last week when we got her she was less than 1/2 inch. Now it's about 2 inches and she eats tons. We went to find more milkweed for her and found another one. We are waiting to bring it to it's new home.

Monday, June 25, 2007

I like to consider myself the queen of lazy. Not that I don't ever do anything, but I will take shortcuts, or make shortcuts if at all possible.

I also have not been secretive about this gift. At all.

So when I was just being me, I was surprised to find that Knight found it so amusing he made a comment "if only the blogging community could see you now"

To honor him, I will tattle on myself.

We decided to finally open some college IRA's for the kids. We have been needing to get this done, but have never taken the time to actually go and do it. So Knight found out how much is a minimum for each kid to start with, how much they can put in at one time, etc and we were going to go over and set it up.

Sounds easy enough, right?

First, Knight was the one who got the info. I have a couple questions, major pms, and I need to move some money around so we can just write out a check to open the accounts. We generally keep that kind of money in savings, instead of checking.

I take care of the money thing. Just a couple of clicks of the mouse, look for the checkbook (does anyone actually write checks anymore? Seriously, I actually write maybe 5 a month, and that is totalling all 3 accounts), grab the checkbook and the money part is taken care of.

Then I get to thinking I will probably need their social security numbers. I don't know about you, but I don't have my kids numbers memorized. But I do know where to find them quickly. It is in the closet located behind the schools computer desk. This closet is pure storage with the exception of holding our tv that is behind the mirror. But the folder I need is within sight, about 4 feet back.

This is where I get lazy.

I really don't want to move the entire computer desk, with computer, just to get this folder. But I can't reach it. At least not with my hands. And I can't crawl under the desk because of the design of the desk. What to do...what to do. For some reason I will never know, a spatula thing is sitting next to the desk. (Humph! So that's where it went to.) You know those stupid egg-flipper-over spatulas that nobody needs, or would ever buy. Yeah...Knight thought it'd be great (I don't have trouble flippin my eggs unless I'm using this) so we have one.

Anyway...I figure I can just reach in, grab the folder, bypass the moving of the desk. Perfect. So as I'm reaching in, Knight sees this and can't believe I would go to such lengths. So here I am to let my blogging world know that I truly am lazy. I needed something to blog about anyway. But I just thought I'd share.

By the way, it DID work. I retrieved the folder within seconds, got my info and off we went. We got there and the financial guy was gone for the day but that is beside the point.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Here... Maybe the picture of the Worlds Ugliest Dog will help Keri have that baby!!! Just trying to help you out!
By the way, this dog won 3 years in a row. He died so now there is a new Worlds Ugliest Dog.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

J-Bird is going to be fine. I did end up taking him in because the nurse line said to go. I figured it would just come out eventually. What do I know. When I brought him in guess what they said. It would come out in about 3 days. He seems excited to be on "poop watch". Yeah, he's a boy.
Rara is feeling too well. Yesterday we went on a long walk with a friend hoping to go into labor and Rara was offering to give piggy back rides. She doesn't understand why she can't do some of these things.
In other news...
We have added to our family. We have kidnapped her and have kept her confined in a very small room. She doesn't make any noise, but she is a real picky eater. We have named her Esther. It's Esther because she will eventually be part of a monarchy but she looks nothing like a queen right now. Right now she's a lowly, humble....monarch caterpillar.
She is the tiniest thing. She does seem to be growing very fast. Our only problem is finding milkweed. There doesn't seem to be an abundance of it, and that is the only thing they eat. We will keep you updated on her progress to the chrysalis (cocoon) and into a butterfly.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Things are getting back to normal around here. Rara keeps asking to go to the park. I did convince her that a bike ride was not the best idea in the world.

It seems to me that the other kids are determined to get me back to the ER though. Desti and her wrist is healing up fine, but we did get one call while in the hospital that she was wrestling with a cousin and twisted it again. J-Bird just came down and let me know he accidently swallowed a magnetix. WHAT??? You are six! Why did you have one in your mouth.

In doing a search on magnetix so I could have a link I found out that all of the sets have been recalled. WHY have I not heard about this??? To quote:
To date, CPSC and Mega Brands are aware of one death, one aspiration and 27
intestinal injuries. Emergency surgical intervention was needed in all but one
case. At least 1,500 incidents of magnets separating from the building pieces
have been reported. ... If a child swallows more than one tiny powerful magnet
detached from the plastic building pieces or one such magnet and a metallic
object, the objects can attract to each other inside the intestines and cause
perforations and/or blockage, which can be fatal, if not treated immediately

So now what do I do?? And how selfish am I that I'm thinking..."Man, I don't want to go through this again"

Sunday, June 17, 2007

We're home! As both of us were discouraged last night, Rara was even more so this morning. They woke her up to draw blood. During that she was just getting to the end of her tolerance and was crying very easy. She was very quiet, tears filling her eyes all morning
Until the surgeon came in and said she could go home. While the surgeon was in the room she was still ignoring everyone but me. Ask her a question and you know that you are not in the same room with her. When she realized that she could go home she totally changed. That great personality came back. She was joking, laughing, making faces.
She's home and doing great. Moving a tad slow, but has already tested out the new sidewalk chalk, played, and has walked up and down the stairs on her own a couple times.
Can you hear her sigh of relief?

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I am always amazed watching how God encourages me when I need it the most. I have had a rougher night. We are tired but can't sleep. Rara is having trouble sleeping. She fell asleep about 1:30am last night, up about 7:30am. No nap today and it's after 11pm and we are still up. I'm emotional, she's emotional.

Her IV was hurting her and gave out. So they had to move it to the other hand. They tried unsuccessfully in the arm, and then moved to her hand. She is starting to really cry when they do things to her. Her brave front is turning to tears. She is SO tired of this and just said "I just want to go home."

Oh, honey! So do I. I just want you home, with everyone else and we can walk away from all these people poking and prodding.

I'm discouraged. I don't want to see anyone. I don't feel like talking. I just need to write. But before I do I check bloglines. This is one of the newly posted:

This Is What I Need Right Now
There is nothing--no circumstance, no trouble, no testing--that can ever touch me until, first of all, it has gone past God and past Christ right through to me. If it has come that far, it has come with a great purpose, which I may not understand at the moment. But as I refuse to become panicky, as I lift up my eyes to Him and accept it as coming from the throne of God for some great purpose of blessing to my own heart, no sorrow will ever disturb me, no circumstance will cause me to fret, for I shall rest in the joy of what my Lord is--that is the rest of victory!

Yes Lord. I'm listening. This is for purpose and I will still choose to trust you.

I know that compared to so many, this is not a major trial. I know nothing of true worry for your kid. But for me, in this trial right now, I am struggling to choose to trust him. I know that he is in control. I know that I can do nothing.

Please pray for strength for her and me. Please know that we know she is loved and prayed for, even though I'm not necessarily calling, or even answering the phone at times. Nothing personal. I just need to cowboy up right now, not get even more down. I am surviving. She is unbelievably strong. Just please don't ask me how I'm doing. I'm on auto-pilot and I am ok. I will not wallow.

I do appreciate you all that have commented or called. This is how I deal with things. Thanks for listening. Happy Fathers day to all (possibly another post on that later)
We have had visitors. Rara now has new crayons, books, dolls, chalk, bears, night lights, and color books. She has had her hair done, toes painted and has been waited on hand and foot.

Medically things are going well. She has been up and walking, all of the "systems" are back working and therefore she is back on solid food. She was able to order her wish list of foods, mac and cheese, applesauce, and strawberry milkshake. She ate what she could although it wasn't much.

Tonight I finally saw my sign that she's starting to feel fine. Hannah Montana was starting on Disney channel and she sang along with the start of the show. For her not to have any music for a couple days, you know she was feeling poor.

Now she's getting a song back into her heart. It feels good to have her coming back.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Paradise. How quickly that can shatter and you find yourself fighting the tears, trying to look like you are SURE everything is going to be ok, sitting and praying like you have never prayed before. And I thought today would be normal.

Rara wasn't feeling real hot last night. We had company and she went and laid down on the couch. She slept on the floor in the living room while we slept on the couch. I was just praying, "Lord, help her not be sick on Monday so she can go to camp, and don't have the other girls get sick either."

I woke up at 7 to her throwing up. Bummer. I hope this doesn't spread. She goes back to sleep, I have my devotions, spend some time with the Lord, and then check out the blogs. Desti gets up. Her thumb is hurting yet. Well, they said if it didn't start getting better in a couple days I need to bring her back in. It's only been 36 hours but it is Friday. Camp is on Monday. There is a birthday party for my niece tomorrow. I don't really have the time to wait too much longer to find out if it's going to get better on it's own, or if it's really broke. So I bring her into the clinic.

They look at me like I'm nuts for bringing her back in. I try to explain that I just want to make sure she is ok before I am dealing with ER again. We are out of the clinic and on with our day in no time.

A quick stop for a gift for the birthday party, meet Knight for breakfast and I'm back home. Today I am going to hit the laundry hard. We have been gone all week and the house is looking pretty rough. Rara's stomach is still bothering her but we are getting the house looking decent again. I head out to put more clothes on the line, clean up the yard a bit and go back inside. I am met with "Rara wants you"

She is crying. Her belly hurts. This is my child that doesn't complain. And she is screaming. She can't quite figure out how to let me know how bad it hurts so she tries to describe it. "It feels like I'm having a baby! OWWWWW!"

The call to urgent care is met by "We can fit you in at 2:20. Ummm, waiting 1.5 hours. Yeah, no thanks. This feels more serious than that. ER here we come.

They admit us and we wait. And wait. And wait. Tick...tick...TICK! People, don't you know that this is my CHILD. She is not acting right. Stop being so nonchalant and get urgent! NOW! We got the ER a little after 1. At 4:30 they have finally decided that it IS appendicitis and they are going to do surgery. Surgery will be in an hour, home tomorrow. No big deal.

Yeah. Tell that to someone else. This is MY CHILD! Fix her but I still don't trust you. I am reminding myself all of her protection comes from the Lord anyway. Nobody can fix her or harm her without the Lord.

"Yes, Lord. Truly, I do trust YOU with her life. But I am not ready to say goodbye. Lord, I have a peace that you are with her, but I don't have a peace that I will be with her here on earth again. Lord, you know my will, but please help me line up my will with yours. I am CHOOSING to trust you."

At 6:15 she goes into surgery. A LONG 45 minutes later the surgeon comes in. She made it out of surgery. The appendix did rupture. There is a possibility of more complications. If everything goes ok we will come home on Monday. She is feeling ok. We have gotten her up walking already. She is getting her fill of Disney channel.

It will again be paradise but this time I know how easily it could all fade.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

It's almost summer (technically anyway) so here are my favorite things about this time of year (not in any particular order)

1. Sitting by the pool, watching my kids get better at swimming and diving. I bring a book. In the last couple of days I have gotten a total of 3 pages read.

2. Mommsons have put up the shade tent and that is a sign that the strawberries are almost ready!! Pick your own or go buy a bucket. Yummy!

3. I can feed my kids something like fruit salsa, strawberry/ rhubarb crisp, or just fresh fruit and call it a meal. Yummy and nutritious.

4. Watching the plants grow and slowly turn into food. The raspberries are looking nice this year. I just need to remember to water them.

5. Actually feeling like I have the time for helping others the way I want. I want to be available all the time, but I do have to keep my priorities a little more in check during the school year so we are taking the time to learn.

6. Camp. I'm not talking about camping. I'm talking about sending the three girls to camp next week and having J-Bird all to myself for a whole week.

7. The river. Mom lives on a river, has a nice boat, and there is a sandbar down river that is like a little private island. You can only get there by boat. Sitting on the boat at the sandbar chatting while the kids play feels like Margaritaville.

8. Planning out the next school year. I know it sounds crazy, but I am already looking forward to the fall and opening up our school year. We need our break, but we are ready to get back to it by the time August comes around.

9. Having the windows open all the time. The price you pay for no air conditioning is you need to have the windows open, but after being shut in all winter, I love to hear most of the sounds the open windows bring.

10. Garage sales. I normally don't shop at them or have them, but it is nice to have something you can do if you so choose. Sometimes it's nice to be able to shop and browse and if you actually find something, it's not that expensive.

11. This is new, but Knight wearing shorts. I nearly made him buy some shorts for work. He reluctantly tried them on, not knowing if he would like them, but I was able to say he did like wearing shorts. It kept him cooler, and I like the look.
12. Sandals. What's to say? I'm lazy and I like it when I don't have to tie my shoes. My feet don't get hot. Easy on, easy off.
13. Skiing. I have really enjoyed watching the kids get good at skiing. We also like tubing. Fun in a boat. Who wouldn't love it?
On a side note--For those who saw her fall, we are still unsure on what is wrong with Desti. I took her into the ER last night because she fell off the monkey bars and landed on a rock that wedged into her skin. The x-rays looked fine, but they put her in a splint just in case. I'm supposed to watch it, and if the pain doesn't subside in a couple days I'm to take her back in. She is still in pain today when we take the splint off and she has full range of motion. Hopefully it's better for camp next week.
Happy Thursday all!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

It has been beautiful weather and we have spent our days at the pool. Rara is getting very good at her diving. She is so good at diving and not so great at swimming. She can swim but not good enough to pass a test for the deep end. J-Bird is trying to learn to dive also. This year has been fun at the pool. Not totally worry-free but I am able to relax some and read a book.

The kids have been also going to VBS in town. They need more kids. Monday my four went with two of their church friends that live in town (the church we go to is not in town). When the kids came home, they let us know that 8 kids were there. Yesterday only the younger of the friends went so they were down to 7. If anyone wants to have their K-6 grade kids come, I'm sure they would welcome it.

Happy Wednesday!!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Sunday Spotlight...

I decided once again to contribute in the Sunday Spotlight. The Livesay Family Blog has been a very interesting read for me. It can be a cute little mom blog. It can be a hiliarious, laugh-out-loud blog. But usually it's a tough read. It is a missionary families blog. They are in the process of adopting their 6th child, and pregnant with number 7! What I love about this blog is that it is REAL. It can be heartbreaking to read. It is filled with beautiful pictures of Haiti, along with truth about how these missionaries are feeling, how they are handling all of the poverty, starvation, and death that surrounds them everyday. They posted this to learn more about Haiti. Sometimes reality is easy to see, but if I keep myself ignorant, I can never grow. Here is a quote from their "blog disclaimer"

We have learned that a handful of missionaries to Haiti, both past and
present are reading the blog. We kind of wish they wouldn’t. That puts imagined
pressure on to have the “right” opinion on the things we see or experience
here.So - I am tossing up another post to clear my conscience and clarify our
position.Here is the thing … sometimes in our journey with the Lord we are at
mountain top places, sometimes we are in deep valleys. Most of the time we feel
God’s perfect peace and provision. But, I am just a normal flake like everyone
else, so sometimes I have days and even multiple days where something that
happens leaves me saying “WHERE ARE YOU GOD????”I would rather have a blog where
I am able to say I am having a day of struggle and of little faith than to lie
and pretend to have it all figured out all the time.I don’t.Something about
people who are all wrapped up nice, and act like they don't struggle, just seems
icky to me. It's not true anyway, they must be faking it.There are tons of
missionaries here that are way smarter and a bunch more faithful than us. They
might totally disagree with some of our thoughts on Haiti and her people. For
example, my thoughts on pride and honesty problems here might offend some,
conversely they might seem understated to others. Someone with ten years of
missionary service will see things differently than I do as a rookie. And that's

I spent the day yesterday with two of my friends painting. D had build a room for her son in the basement and had painted the bottom of the wall brown, the top white and had a self adhesive border to put up. The border would not stick on the textured wall, no matter how much extra adhesive they put on it. It was a camo border so we told her that she should paint it. Since we opened our mouths, we had to volunteered to help. We taped, made an outline and painted all day. We were very proud of ourselves. We were just thrilled with how it turned out. Our husbands (Knight and Keri's hubby came down for supper) on the other hand responded with--"Yep, looks good." I don't think they understood how much work and thought it takes to make a realistic looking camo without making it look like a pattern. We did use an overhead projector so we could have a rough idea of what we should have where. And poor Keri is ready to have her baby any day. Can you believe she is smiling in the picture. This is the touchup at 9:30pm. We had to take a couple breaks for lunch and supper so the day was longer than we expected it to take, but I am thrilled with the result. The kids played outside most of the day and so far we have only had to pull of 3 ticks off of the kids. They pulled more while they were there, but the three ticks were found after we were home. Good times, good friends, wonderful adult conversation. I am truely blessed.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

The kids have been grumpy lately. I have been told that us moms set the tone for our house. I can't tell if they are grumpy since I am grumpy or if I am grumpy because they are grumpy. So during a search on different punishments I have found some creative ideas...

Ducking Stool
1748: One pound and ten shillings cost "to make up a proper ducking stool" to punish scolds and nagging women.
A ducking stool was a seat attached to a long pole mounted on a support. A scold or nagging woman, on the order of the borough court, would be strapped to the stool and ducked in the waters of the Fergus.
Drunkard's cloak. It was a punishment for public drunkenness; the name of it is somewhat misleading. The flaw in the name comes from the fact that the cloak is less a cloak and more a barrel. The drunk was forced to don a barrel and wander through town while the villagers jeer at him. Holes were cut in the barrel for the person's hands and head, causing it to become like a heavy, awkward shirt.
The Brank aka Bride's scold. The brank was a punishment enacted on women who gossiped or spoke too freely. It was a large iron framework placed on the head of the offender, forming a type of cage. There was a metal strip on the brank that fit into the mouth and was either sharpened to a point or covered with spikes so that any movement of the tongue was certain to cause severe injuries to the mouth. The woman was then led by a city official through the streets of town by a chain, then usually tied to a whipping post or pillory to stand in view of the cruel and verbally abusive public.
All of these are for adults. Do you think in the culture where these were acceptable they were complaining about people spanking there kids or people tried to bolster a child's self esteem??? If only my kids were afraid of public ridicule for fighting with each other.....

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

J-Bird graduates from Bible Buddies today. J-Bell entered that class in November 1998. Since then I have had a child in the class and after today I will never again have a child that fits the 3-K criteria. This will be the only year that all my kids are in Kidsquest on Wed. Then J-Bell will go off with the teens next year! I love that they are growing but this is happening too fast!

I'm also gathering a list of songs I want to put on my MP3. Is iTunes the best site to get them from? Anyone have any suggestions? What are the top 100 Christian songs? Who has really good versions of really great songs (like Jars of Clay-- Nothing but the Blood). I have about 50 songs that I have on my play lists on but I would like some new stuff too.

Now I'm off to make a couple cakes for graduation tonight! Hope you all are having a great day.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

My busy week is over, the house pretty much cleaned back up (at least the parts that I see!), the cornrows are gone, and I am officially another year older.

Wednesday I was out and about with my new hair-do and I couldn't help but notice the looks and the second glances I was getting walking around with cornrows. I know that I could have pretended that everyone had just finally noticed that I am hot, but reality was slapping me back in place and I just felt out of place in a town where I don't think I have ever seen cornrows on anyone. Maybe I just don't notice.

So I drove my PMSing self and all the kids to my friends to help her set up her garage sale. I knew that I should have refused because she is moving to Texas in the fall and she has the nerve to actually take her kids with her! I made myself take the high road and help anyway. I have been hearing that us moms set the tone for our homes and so I have been working on not showing my PMS as clearly as my family tends to see it, so I took a few deep breaths and made it through the afternoon helping her with all 7 kids (hers and mine) running into the garage every 10 seconds giving a play by play.

I give myself a thumbs up for coming to the realization that I don't really have PMS, it's just that one week a month my family decides to hide their true selves and turn into these evil trolls set out to destroy my happy little world I created. I wish I had realized this years ago when I have been blaming me and my hormones all this time. I should have known it was not my fault. PMS is gone now and everyone is back to normal.

So my birthday comes around. J-Bird decided to play the mama's boy/ youngest kid part and give me a kiss for my birthday. I don't mean the chocolate one. Nope, no candy for me. A quick peck on the lips, a "happy birthday mom" and things are taken care of on his end. J-Bell gave me some coupons totaling 3 free hours of her cleaning her room. Knight got me a MP3. Now, if I could just figure the thing out. I have been wanting one, but have never really messed with one before.

We had company today. Including my family there was a total of 7 adults, 13 kids. The town has an annual parade and since we live on the parade route we have a cookout. After most of the company left we still had 8 kids running around but I set the timer for 20 minutes, told them all to speed clean and if they get the house put back together before 20 minutes I would make them homemade caramel corn. Under 15 and they would get me to play a game with them too. The house was cleaned back up in 13 minutes flat.

See why it's paradise???