Monday, January 26, 2009


So, last friday Kev took his last final . . . ever. He finished his last classes and their finals, so all he has left is the 9 weeks of student teaching which begins in March. To celebrate we went out to Applebee's with my parents. I'm not sure why my eyes are so freakin' huge in this photo . . . am I really this excited? It's not like I was taking the tests.

Now he's not sure what to do with his time after work for the next 8 weeks. I told him to get an indoor hobby . . . since golf and baseball are off limits in the winter here. Sat and Sun he played his golf and baseball and golf video games . . . and decided he needs a new gaming system since the old Nintendo 64 we have looks like crap on our new hi-def flatscreen (Merry Christmas to Kev!). Good thing he's got a birthday coming up . . . and believe me, the hints have already started dropping. :)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

he spoke.

So, as we're getting into the car today Josiah happened to see our dog thru the side yard fence. Out of nowhere he announced, "Bye Bye, puppy." Just like that. No fanfare, no excitement, no fuss.

Sneaky little wad. I think he talks just fine . . . he just doesn't want us to know it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

no matter what you believe about him, it's still history being made.

So, in about 5 minutes they will begin the inauguration of Barack Obama. I know so many people feel so strongly about him, one way or another. And while I'm sure all the arguments are valid, you have to admit that what is being done today is historic. I'm going to watch the festivities for that fact alone. I really don't care what color our leader is. I'm just happy to be alive during a time when that seems to no longer be the deterring issue it once was.

Some have said that he doesn't deserve all the hoop-lah because he hasn't even done anything yet. Some say no president should be treated like a popstar. Some say he's going to single-handedly bring the ruination of the America we've always known. And some say he's going to change everything and bring to life the best America there will ever be.

Maybe. But when I'm old and looking back thru the scrapbooks of my life, I want to be able to remember that I was alive when they swore in the first African American President. One way or another this event will change our lives and the lives of my kids. I pray that God will use this for good!

Friday, January 16, 2009

a small rant - brought to you by a Bad Night's Sleep.

So, I got really done with all the drama surrounding the Project 365 thing I wrote about a few posts back. People were getting impatient and demanding and just all around ridiculous, some paying upwards of $280 for the kit . . . for some page protectors, a few stickers and a set of fancy journaling cards . . . and FYI, that's more than 7x what the original kit was being sold for . . . something tells me the economy isn't as bad as they keep telling us, at least not in scrapbookland. The creators of the kit posted a few really fun downloads of the designs for the kit and since I have Photoshop I was able to make some changes in the colors used and just use stuff from my existing stash . . . personally I could have made up many, many kits of my own and sold them just from what is currently sitting in my closet. So I, like many other people who got tired of waiting for the company to get their stuff in order, decided to do it on my own. I'm still gonna have fun even if they are not going to help me. The whole thing was just a good idea gone horribly bad, and I hope that the company learned from their mistake.

In other scrapbooking news, one of my fav magazines decided the economy is too yucky and is closing down for good. I hate it when other people make decisions for us because they think it may be necessary. I would rather have had the option of continuing my subscription or not depending on my own economic situation, not just "I'm sorry, we think you won't buy this anymore."

Now, I know that in the grand scheme of things anything at all related to scrapbooking is small beans but I do love it so that it filters into many other parts of my life. And if nothing else, it is a HUGE creative outlet for me . . . and that alone is enough. As Kev says often, "Well, at least it keeps you off the streets."

Sorry for this somewhat dumping of a post . . . I didn't get much sleep last night as Gennie finally caught the stomach bug that we've all been delighted with this past week (seriously, can't we all just get better and be done with it?) so I slept on the trundle bed in her room. Different bed, different room, constantly on the alert for the next round of heaving . . . doesn't lead to much rest. I promise I'll try to be better tomorrow - and it will be about the really important stuff, like crochet or what TV shows I watched - you know, high priority. Yeah . . .

Saturday, January 10, 2009

mom, stop taking my picture.

So, one of these will probably end up as my photo for yesterday. He was such a cuddly little guy while Gennie was at school that I thought I'd try to capture some of that cuddliness - yeah, not so much. I only tried for a few minutes before he turned into such a little monster. No actual words were exchanged, but you'll get the idea of how the event unraveled:
Me: I'll just get that binky out of there so it's not in EVERY PHOTO I have of him.
Josiah: Where does she think she's going with my binky?
Me: Look at me, bud! Up here!
Josiah: No, really, give it back. Yeah, that thing in your hand, that you're swinging around over your head so I'll look up. Yeah, that one.

Me: Put your finger down and look at me. I don't want a photo of your finger. And sit still. You're gonna fall off that chair. Now, look up here!

Josiah: GIVE IT BACK! I'm not gonna smile ever again if you don't hand it over. And just to show you I'm serious, I'm gonna jump off this chair and scream. How does that sound?Yeah, that was pretty much the end of it. Once he gets out this Little Rabid Shark face and shows all 104 teeth in there, there's no reason to press the issue. Another day, maybe.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

project 365

So, last year my sister and I did a scrapbooking project that we ended up calling Two By Two. We collected a bunch of plastic page protectors made for slides . . . they have individual slots in them that are 2 inches by 2 inches, hence the name of our project . . . and filled them with photos, one page for each week of 2008. I'm woefully behind on mine; she did much better and was all caught up when she came out for turkey day. But I'm determined to finish it out by my birthday . . . I'll keep you posted.

Anyway, this year I wanted to jump on the bandwagon with a bunch of my scrapbooking yodas and join in on the Project 365. In broad strokes the plan is that you take one photo a day for a whole year. There's a kit for it with all the stuff you need for a whole scrapbook but the company that produced it waaaaaay underestimated it's allure and on the day they opened it up for purchase online (it's an online-only company), not only did they sell out within the first few hours but there was so much traffic on their website with people trying to get the kit that the whole website crashed and was out of commission for 5 days. They are trying to get more kits produced but I guess they get them made in China and there is a 120-day turnaround time so who knows. I guess I'll just have to wait it out and see if I can get one of them from the second production. I'm kinda not holding my breath.

But . . . I still plan to take the photos and do the journaling, in hopes that I will get my hands on some kind of scrapbooking situation in which to collect them all at the end of the year. I checked eBay yesterday and several people "ended up with 2 kits" . . . ahhh, greed . . . which they were selling but for so much more than the original price, upwards of $200 more. I think I can wait.

All of this to say that I plan to post the chosen photos on here, both to share with you all and so that I can write down the info about the photos to help me remember why I shot them in the first place. The journaling part of scrapbooking is my suckiest part - I even hated putting captions on the photos when I edited my highschool yearbook. But I figure if I put them on here with a line or two about what was going on I have a better chance of actually remembering.

And so I begin. I decided to start on the first Sunday of the year because I hate starting a project in the middle of the week. This Sunday our Girl's Bible Study celebrated someone's birthday and we had them make and decorate cookies. Gennie is too young to be in the group yet but I got to take home the extras for her and Josiah and they were thrilled:Monday brought the return to preschool after the holiday break:

It was -4 degrees as we went out the door. Josiah was really lost without his playmate for the 2 1/2 hours she was gone. I think he really liked having her home everyday for those 2 weeks and he really wasn't ready for her to go. He wandered around getting into stuff he knows he's not allowed in, looking for something to play with but not wanting to do anything. I didn't know a 1 year old could get bored like this. When I told him it was time to go pick her up he screamed happily and bolted for the front room to put on his hat and gloves. I just laughed and was thrilled that they get along so well.

Two down, 363 to go!

Monday, January 5, 2009

her birthday

So, here's a taste of Gennie's birthday celebration. First, we got a huge snowstorm that day so I let her run around while it was coming down. She made a snow angel and ate handfuls of it . . . it kind of looked more like she fell off the roof:
Then, in the tradition of mean parents in our family who don't let their kids get into their birthday presents until after supper on the appointed day, she had to suffer all day waiting to open anything. Good thing for me, tho, as I didn't have anything wrapped until after her nap. Grandma and Grandaddy came over to have birthday supper with us, which consisted of Pork, Potatoes, and Peas, as requested by the Birthday Girl. She didn't care how any of the required items were prepared so I made Seared Pork Chops in Mushroom Gravy, Julienne Potatoes in Cheddar Sauce and Steamed Peas. And yes, I had to recite the menu just this way as I served it (for my little Top Chef junkie . . . she's been chompin' at the bit for the show to resume after the holiday break).
After we cleaned up supper she got to decorate her "cake". This year she wanted princess stuff so I did streamers and balloons and everything in princess colors (which you can't see in any of the photos, for some reason) and for her cake I found a gingerbread castle kit to put together. I usually don't like those kit things because you never can tell just how long they were on the shelves before being shipped to sit on our shelves here but this year I made an exception . . . and truthfully I had no intention of eating any of it. It came with all the frosting and cookie pieces and decorating candies and mom and I helped her put it together and decorate it.
I can only imagine what kinds of chemicals they used in the frosting . . . it was this random white powder until you added a tiny bit of water . . . then it turned this shockingly bright shade of pink and had to be stirred constantly or it hardened and was unusable. But it was the perfect color for a princess castle and Gennie LOVED getting to "paint" it on.
There were even little rice paper princesses to put in the windows . . . they were supposed to be edible as well so she tried a taste and spit it out all over the table . . . apparently not.
Then, on to the presents. She got a bunch of fun stuff from everyone, including a Groovy Girls collection from us. They are kinda like Barbies but bigger and made of cloth. We gave her 4 different dolls, a tent and sleeping bags, and a horse. Then she opened the Big One and found the Mod Pod House! She was really surprised:
I had a blast going thru the whole set and wrapping it all up for her . . . Kev said it looked like I was having as much fun as she was going to . . . he just shook his head and laughed. And of course her brother dove right in and checked it all out. He kept sneaking up and stealing different pieces, then running away to hide them in the hall.
After all the presents, we moved on to the dessert. Since I wasn't planning on serving the princess castle, I made a chocolate mousse pie.
All in all, she said it was the best birthday she's ever had. Mind you, she's said this every year since she learned to speak but I think she really did have a good time. Now, how do we top this next year?

Friday, January 2, 2009


So, after a long week filled with ear infections, chest colds, antibiotics and more coughing than should be allowed in one family, I'm back. Gennie was coming down with "it" on her birthday but was feeling better by Christmas morning, just in time for me to take Josiah in to see the dr on the 26th. Kev got it this week and I had one day that all I did was lay on the couch but since then I've been chasing the kids with their meds and trying not to get coughed on. The good thing was that Kev had already taken the whole week off so it's not like he was missing work - he had planned on knocking out a bunch of his homework while he was off and needless to say that hasn't happened . . . he hasn't been able to hold a conscious thought for more than a few minutes making studying a joke.
Anyway, back to our Christmas morning. Gennie woke us up with the stocking news: "Mom, Santa brought me a princess something in a box and some pie! But you guys only got green beans."

Awesome. She didn't know that we had to put the cans up on top of the stocking hangers because once the stockings were filled they pulled the hangers right off the rock wall. (The princess thing was a puzzle and the "pie" is pumpkin filling.)

Mom and Dad came over for brunch and we finally got around to presents after 11am. The kids had a great time opening presents and got lots of clothes and toys. Here are some highlights:

Josiah got several Little People sets and clothes and set of dishes perfectly sized for him (he demands them at every meal now) and a quilt in little boy-type fabric that he LOVED and this wooden train set from Nana and Grandpa Pat . . . a huge hit!

Gennie got a Barbie . . . which she was OVERJOYED about . . . and a stamping set of her very own (so she'll stay out of mine!) and an art set with crayons and watercolors (whic she's already used up so we'll have to get more) and Groovy Girls stuff (more about that with her birthday, later) and this fabulous quilt from Great Grandma Billie which they both had to model for me:

I know it's not right to be envious, especially of one's own 5 year old daughter, but I've been systematically devising ways to get to use the blanket myself - I LOVE IT!! Reminds me of my childhood somehow, although I never had this particular design on anything of my own. Hmmmm.

Kev got a reciprocating saw from my parents, and he was totally thrilled . . . the proof being that I hardly ever get an actual "excited" face from him in photos. Now he just needs something to hack apart.

I had told Kev when he asked what I wanted for Christmas that I'd like to learn a new skill. I learned how to crochet back in college instead of doing my homework (D=Diploma, right?) but never learned how to knit so that's what I picked:

So far I've mastered the "casting on" part but can't seem to get the knitting stitches right yet. Must need more practice.

After all that, we put the kids down for naps and watched our traditional Christmas Day movie . . . we used to go to the show on Christmas Day but now that we have kids that doesn't always work so we've rented movies the last few years to watch while they nap. This year we watched Leatherheads . . . it was pretty funny watching George Clooney try to be a youngster athlete. When the kids got up we went out for Christmas Dinner - Chinese!

Appropriately we sang "Fa-ra-ra-ra-ra, ra-ra ra ra" . . . quitely under our breaths so as to not offend the Chinese waiters . . . but I don't think anyone had duck. After we had stuffed ourselves we came home to watch "A Christmas Story". The kids got into their new jammies from Nana and Grandpa Pat and actually cuddled together on Gennie's couch with their new car blankets I made them . . . we don't dare go anywhere around here without some sort of blanket in the car with us in case there's an accident or we get stuck on the road or something so I made them each a second car blanket so they now have one for each car . . . Josiah's has scotty dogs on one side and paw prints on the other and Gennie's is monkeys on both sides, one pink and one teal:

Thus endeth our Christmas this year. I had a blast and shot way too many photos like I always do . . . tradition is tradition, after all. Kinda sad that the holidays are over for another year, but now we get to play with all our new stuff . . . Kev, get that saw out of my scrapbook closet!

Oh, and this was our Dec 26th:

and most of our days since, between one of us or the other. Good thing we didn't have any place to be. Here's to a fabulous 2009 and all the adventures it has to offer!