What's Going Down

Friday, August 29, 2008

NEEDED: Wealthy Benefactor

So, I've got a birthday coming up. The first two-nine. I'm trying not to think about it.

At any rate, my dear, gift-challenged sweet husband has been receiving links via email as to acceptable desired objects that will forever cement my love for him. Unfortunately, I either have extremely expensive tastes or we're not exactly rolling in it... it being money, of course. I'm pretty sure it's the latter.

I thought I could share the wide and varying selection of ideas I offered up.


I mean, come on. I've been married 8 years and I'm still working with this:

Yes, that's right folks. A $10 Proctor-Silex hand mixer. Please. This thing will NOT make bread.


I would love to be able to share the absolute cuteness and personality of my children on this here blog. However, I have no ability to capture video. This particular camcorder is supposed to be idiot-proof. Believe me, I need it. While I can work a camera like nobody's business, I'm a complete dunce when it comes to video.

Third: (Yes, the list was kinda long.)
It wouldn't be a proper birthday if I wasn't jonesing for something camera related, right?

I've heard really good things about this lens. You know I NEED it, right?


I know, I'm completely behind the times. I'm still sporting this bad boy:

Kinda bulky. Really annoying. I just want something small that plays music. And don't even get my started on headphones. I've tried EVERYTHING. Nothing stays in these tiny ear holes I've got.


This one is kind of a must, and if I don't get it for my birthday, I'm buying it anyway. My back is KILLING me!


My friend Char got one of these for herself. And everyone knows, I want nothing more in life that to be like Char. Get your own here.

Seventh and Finally: (So far.)

I drool over this magazine. Bring it.

As you can see, the list is long and sorta pricey. Of course, I wasn't asking him to buy me EVERYTHING!!! Just one should suffice. As long as it's this one. Hint. Hint. I'm fine with factory reconditioned. Nudge. Nudge.

Stay tuned to see how he does.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Quote of the Night.

"If you're going to sleep in the laundry basket, at least do it in your own room."

Sometimes, you say things to your children, you could never have imagined you would have to say.

Let's hear yours.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Because some things MUST be recorded.

As I stated earlier, Miles is potty training. And he is doing a pretty decent job. He'll do great for 3-4 days and then have a bad day. But he's getting it. And I couldn't be more proud.

the dukemeister

Yesterday, Miles comes running from another part of the house and I hear his little voice say to himself, "Hurry hurry, I don't want to pee in my pants!" So, I run after him to help him out. We get him stripped down and on the potty and the kid has a huge duke (does anyone else use this wording?).

I said to him, "Wow, Miles. That was a big poop!"

He looks up at me with his big sweet brown eyes and says, "That's not a poop, Mama. That's a TURD!"

I nearly choked.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Braids. (The Politically Incorrect Version).

When I was growing up, my mom was the one who did our hair. After a bath, we'd take a brush to our dad, and have him brush it. He was always SO good! Gentle and caring and it felt like an amazing and wonderful scalp massage. Then we'd go to my mom and she'd do any updo that we requested.

On the rare occasion that my mom wasn't available to do our hair, my dad would do the ONE hairstyle he knew. And this is where it gets politically incorrect. The hairstyle was what my parents called Indian Braids. It was one of my very favorite ways to have my hair done, mostly because it meant that my dad did it.

Nowadays, I don't have much hair. Definitely not enough for braids. And the girls, well, they've got a plethora. And being that school's officially in session, each morning requires a new hairstyle. And so, I whipped out the Indian Braid from my arsenal.
braided first grader

Basically just a low, right behind the ear braid. I think it looks classic.
love it.

And Abbie loved it. Wanted them again this morning. I'm really loving having her hair longer. Which is why when she decided that she didn't like her bangs last week and took the scissors to them... I didn't respond like last time. I simply cut her some bangs.

Abbie asked me what these kind of braids were called. I told her that MY PARENTS (because it's okay if THEY'RE politically incorrect) called them Indian Braids. But if someone asked, just call them braids. I'm embarrassed.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I'm sure you're totally sick of looking at my kid.

But, I'm still babymooning. I think it helps that he's teeny. I can still pretend he's a newborn. Sorta. Except that he's trying to sit, and roll over and all that. I mean, he is easily fitting into 0-3 month clothes still. Despite my efforts to nurse him longer and more often, he remains rather scrawny. So for size reference. A picture of Matt holding him while eating dinner.

for reference.
But as I said, he's making efforts to roll over. He is totally successful from his belly to his back, but can't really figure out the other direction.
i kinda have a thing for stripes.
Sidenote: Have I mentioned that I'm kinda sorta, a fan of stripes? It wasn't obvious? Appalling. Also, thank you Sheri for that adorable shirt! I sent a note, didn't I? Please say yes.

Lucas really is a fantastic kid, especially if you don't mind drool. I'm not sure if my other kids were just blessed with less drippy mouths, but I certainly don't remember this level of salivation. drippy
Seriously, I need a bib. For me. Oh, I guess they call that a burp pad. Whatever. I'm rather soggy most of the day.

And I know I mentioned this in my last post devoted to him, but this kid's hair is hilarious.
the hair.
It totally looks as if we cut it like this. I promise you, we did not.

And I think that wraps up this week's round of Lucas pictures. Stay tuned till next week!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Let's try this again.

Monday was the first day of school round these parts. Yay! Seriously. I couldn't handle another day. I was elated to have Abbie off to school. First Grade! Yahoo! Party time! Excellent!

and they're off...!

Abbie had a fabulous first day. Of course, Tropical Storm Fay thought she'd be hilarious and enter the scene. Canceled were days 2 and 3 of school. Such a major tease. The joyous celebration of that first day, turned into wicked torture. It was as if having just the one day of school was enough to multiply my children's ability to get on each other's nerves. Not to mention mine*. But, from what I gather, Fay is no longer an issue (despite the fact that it's still extraordinarily windy and hasn't stopped raining). So, school is ON for tomorrow! For real this time!

If I'm this excited right now, just imagine my uberjoy when Anna starts Preschool on the 2nd of September. I might have to be restrained!

*Talk about getting on my nerves! Abbie decided she didn't like her bangs last night and decided to take some scissors to them... She lopped off a nickel sized chunk to about an inch long. She's 6.5 years old. I'm gonna lose my mind.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

It's so tiring.

passed out.

Being a big boy is so utterly exhausting. You spend your entire day either running to the potty, washing your hands, or being badgered as to whether you have to go. It follows that since you're now wearing "skinnies", you're just too big for naps. Well, at least voluntary naps that take place in an actual bed. Also, you have to refuse taking naps until at least 4p, thus ruining a normal bedtime.

the front end.

Yeah, definitely a big boy.

They REALLY like him.

Lucas is a very popular fella 'round these parts. Sometimes I worry that my other kids are going to love him into an early grave. Abbie can't bare to hear him cry, so she'll even get him out of his crib (she's 6 remember) and carry him DOWN THE STAIRS to bring him to me. I've caught Anna literally LAYING on him. Also rubbing his face with her feet. Also poking his soft spot, over and over (it's his brain, not playdoh!!) Miles is actually the only one who seems to prefer to love him from a distance. And that's probably only because he's been threatened sufficiently.

But despite the dangerous affection that the kids feel for him, Lucas is obviously quite fond of them. Yesterday, I was sitting at my computer and heard the melodious laughter of no less than four children. The girls were playing peek-a-boo with Lucas. He would start laughing, which would set off the girls, which would put Miles over the edge. It was one of those serene moments that justify your decision to have so many kids so close together.


So, I took a picture so that later, when they dump a five pound bag of sugar on each other, I might not kill them.

Friday, August 15, 2008


I've been selected as a finalist in a photo contest. I know. I'm stunned too. On a whim, I submitted a photograph to a contest over at 5 Minutes for Mom.
3 year old 3 legged race

I'm amazed that I made the final 20. Seriously. And the finalists are really fantastic!

So, here's where I shamelessly beg for your votes. I guess you don't HAVE to vote for me, but it would sure be nice! So head on over and VOTE!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Remembering David. (Getting Serious for a Second.)

Today is the one year anniversary of my brother's death. I miss him.

I thought I'd take a second to relate one of my favorite memories of him.

As I mentioned in a previous entry, we didn't have a swimming pool when I was growing up. And believe it or not, Pennsylvania gets pretty darn hot (and humid!) during the summer months. So, we'd play in the hose, make a slip and slide out of some of my dad's plastic sheeting, and invariably we would go to Otter Creek at least a couple of times every summer. This wonderful tributary of the Susquehanna River is a mostly shallow, rather swiftly moving creek. For the better part of the creek, the water isn't deeper than your knees.
otter creek

(A thank you to my sister Jenny, who sent me this picture that I took with HER point and shoot camera when I was at home.)

But there are a few spots, where there are drop-offs and waterfalls and even a great little swimming hole with an area about 12 feet deep. I was never really brave enough to jump off the tall (10 feet?) rocks into the deep water. But one summer, I did manage to be convinced to slide down the 6 foot waterfall. You simply climbed around (on land) to the top, waded out to the waterfall, and sat down. Slip, slide, woot! The waterfall would push you under and out and you'd swim to the side, where you'd climb up and do it all over again.

Well, this particular summer, I was probably about 13, and David was maybe 15. So, waterfall sliding we went. I remember doing it about two or three times. Man... it was fun! Finally, it was my turn again. Slip, slide... oops. Instead of the waterfall pushing me under and out, it just pushed me under. As hard as I tried, it kept sucking me back in and under. I was barely able to keep my head afloat for long enough to get a breath. My brother, David, having just gone before me, had already swam to the side.

I was scared. My mom, seeing that I was struggling made the attempt to swim to me. However, the current from the waterfall was too strong. Quickly, my brother David, jumped back in the water, and swam his hardest into the waterfall to pull me out.

I like to think he saved my life. It sure felt like it. Wish I could have done the same for him.

I miss him.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Will Blog For Food:

So, I will totally blame my sister here, but I love food. Wait, let's go back.

I hate to cook. Or did. Loathed. Everyday, I would avoid the topic of dinner. I would shudder at the thought of throwing together another nasty boring casserole. I hated it so much that I would avoid it until the last possible second when I would throw chicken nuggets in front of my kids. But seriously, that's gross. And it made me feel like a bad mom. I'm not gonna lie, however, it's still my last minute meal.

However, some switch inside me totally flipped when I watched and helped my sister make Cafe Rio Burritos last November. It seemed like it was a whole lot of chopping and dicing and saute-ing for what could never be a big enough payoff. Boy, was I wrong!!! These are so delicious, that even Matt has blogged about them.

What I've discovered about myself and cooking is that it has to be a fun recipe. It has to use fresh ingredients. I like chopping and dicing. I like new recipes. In the last month, we've haven't had the same recipe twice (unless you count lunch leftovers). And I'm trying to keep it that way. When I plan our menus for grocery shopping, I simply go through the many food blogs that I've tossed in my Google Reader and pick out recipes that I've starred throughout the previous weeks. I have NO trouble coming up with two weeks worth of recipes that are delicious and fun to make.

So, in making all of these new recipes, my sister and I have wanted to share them with each other, and anyone else who wants them. So we started a joint food blog. If you feel so inclined, you can take a jaunt over there and find yourself some RAWKING recipes. I promise not to post anything gross.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

So, I've got this kid...

named Lucas. He's pretty much the cutest kid ever.

And apparently, I've given up taking pictures of all my other children. You would too, if you had this kid cooing in your face all day long.

The kid LOVES to suck on his hand/fingers. Not interested in the thumb. Yet.
Did I mention that he's 4 months old now? Yes, we've hit the point of Exersaucers and the wonderful hip carry in the sling!
Lucas is a tiny little peanut of a kid. At 4 months, he weighed only 11 pounds 7.5 ounces. But he's of normal length... STRING BEAN!
He's discovering his feet and learning to roll over. Curses!
His hair is starting to come in and it's this fuzzy mess that stands straight up. It's HILARIOUS!
Did I mention he was cute?
I did? Well, good gravy, I love this boy.

Monday, August 4, 2008


The first Sunday we were in Pennsylvania, we decided to go ahead and have Lucas blessed. And in my mind, I have all these lofty ideals of pictures I want to take to commemorate the occasion. In the end, however, I'm lucky to get pictures at all.

with dad.

He (Lucas) wore the same outfit that was purchased by my mom for Miles. It's probably my favorite thing ever (I say that about a lot of stuff, eh?)She also crocheted the blanket you can see here. She's amazing... she has crocheted a different blessing blanket for EACH of my children. No, they're not allowed to touch them. Yes, they can have them when THEY have children of their own. Until then, they're MINE.

no neck lucas.

And it was a really wonderful blessing. Matt blessed him with the ability to unify his family in love and righteousness among other things. And so far, Lucas is doing his part... that is to say, we're unified in our love for this little man.

love this one.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Jenny, Jason, etc.

As I mentioned in a previous post, my sister Jenny and her family were the subjects for one of my photoshoots while I was in Pennsylvania. I'm not sure if it comes from the great interaction they had, or the amazing lighting, or even the fabulous location we encountered, but it was probably one of my favorite shoots in quite some time. So, it goes without saying that I'll be sharing quite a few of these images.

definitely making my website

group shot

jason & tab

jenny & benny



shadows & light

I'm really so very proud of myself. And aren't they such a good looking family? Miss you guys!

Friday, August 1, 2008

So, where were we? Oh, yes, blogging.

When I was growing up, we didn't have a pool, or money to attend day camps during the summer or basically anything costing money. So instead, we had to be inventive and entertain ourselves in ways that I wouldn't necessarily consider "typical." Actually, that might be true of other people who grew up 20 years ago. But our society has made it so that children must be entertained at all times to the point of being overscheduled. Heaven forbid children be inventive and entertain themselves with things that don't involve soccer, karate, ballet and then swimming lessons all before dinner. Small rant. Sorry.

As it turns out, the cheap childhood games we played are the very same ones that I relish and long for my children to enjoy.

Things like...

Three legged races.

3 legs.

uh oh.

And Red Light, Green Light and Mother May I, but I don't have pictures of those... so keep an eye on Jenny's blog, too, because I think she will eventually have them up.

We also entertained ourselves with things like...
Swinging and climbing on the rope swings. There has been a rope swing on this tree for the better part of the last 22 years. Poor tree.
more swing
What else? Oh yeah, races.
more races.
Making necklaces, bracelets and headresses out of clover flowers. Yes, even for the boys.
clover wreath headresses
aw. pretty boy.
princess p.
too grown up.
I guess some occasional parent interaction is okay. But just to spin you around.
And in general, just getting really dirty... and REALLY sweaty.
again, ew. sweaty.
another sweaty kid
sweaty kid.
(if that one of Miles doesn't make you guffaw, you're dead to me.)

But, I guess that sometimes, kids just get tired of entertaining themselves. They just can't bring themselves to do any more swinging or sliding...
um. not it.
not so pleased.
and that's when Mom offers you a popsicle.
clever kid.
and you attempt to eat it through a butterfly net.

Kids are weird, man!

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