Well, really, I don't mind the kids having friends over. It just seems harder this year to actually stay awake.
I hope everyone had a great Christmas. We have had a wonderful time just hanging out as a family. Dave has two weeks off and the idea of going no where sounds fantastic. We have been watching lots of movies and playing with our new toys.
This is a favorite.Paige has been playing with this everyday, definitely a huge hit.
I was thinking today about 2008. I love a new year because it seems like a wrapped package with lots of surprises inside to discover. I always pray my surprises are happy ones, but even the sad ones can be a blessing in disguise.
I hope to be able to visit you all in the next few days. My computer charger pooped out on me AGAIN and all of my favorites are stored on it. I am borrowing the kids computer right now to get my few minutes of bloggy time. Aren't they sweet to let me borrow the computer hubby and I bought for them? They truly are sweet and generous children.
Well, thats atleast what I keep telling myself as they stand over my should asking if I am done yet.
Happy 2008 my friends.
The stockings are stuffed.
Presents under the tree.
I can't wait until morning.
Merry Christmas from our family to yours.
When the family got home from Church Paige was feeling a little bored so we decided to let her open the gift her sister had bought for her.. I doubt she will be able to stay up late enough tomorrow night to participate in the kids gift exchange so this was a great idea.
She loved her little tea set and immediately went and got her stuffed dog to serve him tea.
Here Doggy have some of my special blend.
Let me help you with that.
I'm feeling much better.
p.s. Please don't mind my bed head. Mommy has been so busy today she forget to brush it.
Merry Christmas from me and my doggy.
The last week before Christmas has come to an end and what a week it was.
Presents were wrapped, school parties were attended, neighbors joyfully celebrated the season together. Does it have to end?
This morning I woke up and realized the house really needed some attention. So, the slaves were called in to service. Sometimes we also call these people the children.
Once the downstairs was cleaned I couldn't stand it anymore. I declared the house was clean enough and off we went to have some more fun.
We went to lunch and then to the outdoor promenade mall which was blissfully absent of shoppers. We listened to the carolers and the kids got their faces painted for FREE. We then walked over to the movie theatre and took in Alvin and the Chipmunks.
Well, Dave and the other kids did. Paige was scared of the little critters and only made it through the first ten minutes of the movie. She and I went to Starbucks and listened to the music some more.
I firmly believe that laundry and house work should be outlawed for the Christmas season. There is way to much fun out their waiting for us to be locked in our laundry room sorting socks.
So, go forth my friends and have fun, and if your family complains you just blame it all on me. Really. I won't mind one bit.
The only thing that would make this Christmas perfect would be snow. Since their is no hope of any of that white stuff coming my way I went out and bought a flocked wreath for the front door. Isn't she pretty?
I have no idea why the picture is crooked. Perhaps I have eaten so much sugar this week my body was in some sort of shock and unable to hold the camera still. That is the explanation I am going with at least.
I hope you have been able to take some time to just enjoy the season. It will all be over before we know it.
I know he would be thrilled if one of our daughter's took an interest in soft ball. Their is no chance for Samantha. She has made it clear SHE HAS NO INTENTION OF PICKING UP A BALL, EVER. Unless it's a tennis ball.
So, that leaves Paige, who seems like she might actually maybe be thinking about a soft ball career.
A few weeks ago we were all outside and she ran into the garage and picked up her glove and a ball. She then began throwing said ball around with her older brother.
Hubbies heart was filled with joy.
So, honey, here you go. Some pics of your future star.
Here it comes!
A little stretching and conditioning.
A little instruction from her wiser more experienced big brother.
Glove out, and eye on the ball.
I CAUGHT IT! I just can't believe it.
A Star is Born.
One game turned into two.
Two games turned into three.
Three games turned into four.
Yes, that is right my friends. My son played a total of six games this weekend.
The weekend I was hoping to have at home with all of us snuggled under blankets watching Christmas movies and eating fudge just never happened.
Tonight when I thought that my head just might explode from the list going through it of all the things I needed to get done this weekend and DIDN'T, hubby informed me he would only be working half days all week and would be around to help me.
The poor man probably realized his wife was near her breaking point and immediate intervention was required.
Anyway, this weekend made me think of a job description for a "Mom" or "Dad" that a girlfriend sent me recently. If you have the time to read through it I think it will make you smile.
Mom, Mommy, Mama, Ma
Dad, Daddy, Dada, Pa, Pop
JOB DESCRIPTION :
Long term, team players needed, for challenging permanent work in an often chaotic environment.
Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24 hour shifts on call.
Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities!
Travel expenses not reimbursed.
Extensive courier duties also required.
The rest of your life.
Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $5.
Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly.
Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf.
Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers.
Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and coordinate production of multiple homework projects.
Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks.
Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next.
Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices.
Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst.
Must assume final, complete accountability for the quality of the end product.
Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.
POSSIBILITY FOR ADVANCEMENT & PROMOTION :
Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills, so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you.
PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE :
None required unfortunately.
On-the-job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.
WAGES AND COMPENSATION :
Get this! You pay them! Offering frequent raises and bonuses. A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent. When you die, you give them whatever is left. The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.
While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered; this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth and free hugs and kisses for life if you play your cards right.
Seriously, I have been doing the weirdest things lately.
For example, today I decided to run out to the Bible Book Store which is about 15 minutes from my house. Twice a week I have one hour with no kids and I try and do something fun with that time, and not do laundry.
So, I figured I could run out to the book store and have about 40 minutes to just browse and maybe pick up some stocking stuffers.
That all sounded just great until I parked my car and went to grab my purse and realized I HAD LEFT MY PURSE AT HOME. With all the money in it.
I personally find it very hard to shop with NO MONEY.
Oh well, I went in and just browsed, which was still fun.
Then I remembered I had to pick up the kids Christmas pictures from the portrait studio that was right around the corner. Great, my trip out this way will not be in vain.
I zip into the portrait studio and explain that I would like to pick up my pictures. Do you have your receipt? Well, no. Do you have identification? Umm, nada.
Another wasted trip. It seems that portrait studios frown upon giving hundreds of dollars worth of pictures to people with no Identification or receipt.
Of course, I could have proved who I was if I had actually been in the picture. But, you see, I couldn't find a thing to wear and thus just had the pictures taken of the kids.
I am seeing a pattern here, are you?
Labels: Mom Stuff
As I was cleaning up the kitchen tonight I heard what sounded like a small animal screaming loudly. I didn't know animals could actually sound like they were screaming. The kids and I had never heard anything like this before.
I immediately thought that the dog had caught another treasurer, he is known for keeping our rodent population down, when I thought to myself I doubt a rat or possum would sound like that.
Tyler (14) had been out back cleaning his bunny cage a little while before so I off handily asked The bunny cage was closed up right?
I have never seen children move faster than when I asked that question. Zach (16) ran out and yelled that the cage was open. Samantha (11) runs toward the screaming sound, someone else tackles the dog, and the very frightened bunny runs into Samantha's arms.
Now, I have to explain to you something about this bunny. His name is Mr. Fluffy Bottoms and he is a huge part of our family. This is Tyler's bunny and he loves him very much. This bunny comes into our house and runs around and shows much affection towards us all. Just tonight I was holding him on the couch and he snuggled into me like a little baby.
The thought that Mr. Fluffy Bottoms had been harmed in any way by our sweet Golden Retriever, Sydney, turned every child in our house into a screaming out of control lunatic.
It seems that after Tyler cleaned his bunnies cage, he left the back door open by accident. When he put him back into his clean cage it was already dark outside so it was not apparent the back door was still open. Mr. Fluffy Bottoms must of thought he would hop on out (its about a two foot drop) and have himself a little adventure. He apparently got more than he bargained for.
Every one slowly calmed down and we examined our sweet bunny. He was all wet and slobbery (from the dog licking and slobbering all over him) but did not seem to have any injuries.
The kids are all in bed now and I just put Mr. Fluffy Bottoms back into his cage wrapped in a nice warm blanket. I made sure both doors were closed and locked.
I am a little concerned that Sydney could have jumped on him and caused some internal injuries. From having bunnies before I know that there is really nothing I can do if this did happen. Dave is in Washington D.C. for a few days and I really don't want to wake in the morning to a bunny who is not, well, alive.
So, tonight I am praying for our sweet little bunny who is really so much more than just a bunny to our family. Our sweet dog was only trying to play and if he had really wanted to hurt Fluffy Bottoms he definitely had the chance. I think what he actually accomplished was almost scaring and licking the poor little thing to death.
Dear Lord, I am praying this for my children who are so worried about their sweet friend. Please heal our little bunny if their is indeed something wrong with him, and if he is not OK in the morning, please comfort my little ones hearts for they surely will be breaking. Amen.
Update: Mr. Fluffy Bottoms is happily jumping around his cage this morning. He ate a good breakfast and drank lots of water. The kids went happily off to school thanking God that their prayers were answered and Mr. Fluffy Bottoms seems to be OK.
I took a few pictures of him this morning to share with you but for some reason my computer won't load them. I'll try again later in the day. He really wasn't wanting to cooperate with me anyways and refused to look at the camera. I guess he's still a little mad we let the dog give him a sponge bath. Go figure.
Do you remember when I was complaining last week that it was 90 degrees and very hard to get into the Christmas spirit? Yeah, I remember to. Why exactly was I complaining? It has been really cold here for the last few days which I do love, it just makes for a really hard time getting the kids up for school. They would much prefer to stay cuddled under their nice warm blankies. I don't know how all of you in the east, where it actually snows, get your kids out of bed in the morning.
Yesterday I had a mini panic attack when one of the kids told me it was two weeks until Christmas. I laughed and then informed this enthusiastic child that, ha ha, no it was three weeks until Christmas. Until said child actually showed me the calendar....and I broke out in a cold sweat.
How could that be? This season, as usual, is moving way to fast.
So, today I am pushing it into high gear and will be baking all day long. I will bake until I explode from all the dough I plan to eat. I am sure it will not be a pretty sight.
In other news, we had our last home visit yesterday with our social worker and everything went great. I was cooking dinner when he arrived, the kids were doing their homework, Dave was packing for a business trip he left on this morning, and Paige was running around naked insisting it was time for her bath. Yes, just another crazy day at our house. He seemed to really enjoy it though, and said we should have our completed home study in our hands within a week. Yeah!!!
We are one step closer to bringing our new little girl home.
Janice loved to cook. She loved recipes and making new things for her family. However, she seemed to have the curse that afflicts many in my husbands family. She was very very slow. Hubbies family rarely ate a meal before 9:00pm. This was a real source of amusement for all his friends.
Now, I don't want to make it sound like being slow is a bad thing. It is just very different from who I am. I like things done fast. As I have stated on this blog before, I am not a patient person.
My mother in law loved to shop. I hate it. She always looked impeccable and had on a nicely pressed outfit. I like jeans and a t-shirt. Her home was always neat and tidy, and mine, well, we won't even go there.
After Janice died my sister in law, Cheryl, and I went through her apartment and sorted through years of history and memories. We also found some other things that fascinated me.
My mother in law lived through the depression. Having done so she was a very thrifty person and saved anything she felt might be useful at another time. I found neatly folded paper bags stashed perfectly into many little hiding places. She also kept all of her plastic bags and had a way of folding them up perfectly into little balls to store that was almost an art form. I could never get my plastic bags like that no matter how hard I tried.
Now, lets move forward a few years to examine my beautiful 11 year old daughter.
She is the only one in the family that has reddish blonde hair (Auburn) and green eyes. Like her grandma Janice.
This girl loves to shop. She loves clothes and jewelery and could browse for hours. Her room is always perfect. She loves to organize and re-organize her closet to make it the most efficient closet it can possibly be. She is slow and methodical and gets mad at me when I tell her to just throw an item of clothing in the dryer for a few moments to get the wrinkles out. She would never think of such a thing. The iron is her friend. Her grandma loved to iron and, as far as I am concerned, was a champion at it.
Not to long ago I was looking for something in her room and came across a plastic bag that had lots of other plastic bags inside....rounded up into little perfect balls. Just like her Grandma used to do.
I asked my sweet girl why she did that. "It just made sense Mom, I can use them again". But how did you know how to get the bags into those perfect little balls? "I don't know mom, it just came natural I guess". Hmmm.
Sometimes when I watch Samantha I see Janice's mannerisms and I just can't believe how much they are alike.
Two Sunday's ago I walked into Samantha's room on Sunday morning to a sight that confirmed to me forever more that my mother in law is guiding my daughter's hands from heaven.
This is what I saw.
You see, she had this sweater she wanted to wear to church. She washed it Saturday night and figured it wouldn't have time to lay dry over night. So she fastened it to her ceiling fan (with a pillow case underneath to protect her garment of course) and let it twirl away all night to dry. It worked beautifully.
I never would have thought to do something like that. However, her grandma would have.
I am sure I will continue to marvel at the similarities between my girl and her grandma. How she can be so like her, even though she knew her for such a short time, I really don't understand. However, I count it as a blessing to have this small part of my mother in law still with us. I am sure she is looking down from heaven and is so pleased with her little granddaughter. This makes me smile.
How about your family? Do you see some of the same things in your children?
I have quickly discovered that one of the kids favorite things about our daily Advent reading are the snacks that are served. I originally served the snacks to keep their hands occupied during the time we were reading from the book.
You know, so they couldn't be poking or hitting a sibling next to them while they were suppose to be listening. Not that anything like that every happens at our house. Ahem.
Anyway, I am quickly running out of ideas for special snacks. Last night we had a little mix of everything that I had served over the past few days. Here's what it looked like.
We had Kettle corn, cheddar cheese popcorn, ginger bread cookies, and one Reece's peanut butter cup. Whew. It was a big hit.
So, my smart and creative friends out there, if you have any suggestions for fun snacks to keep the kids hands busy I would greatly appreciate it.
On another note, it is 3:00 a.m. and I am up blogging because....IT IS RAINING OUTSIDE! Yeah!!!!
The hot air is gone and it is nice and cool. I must say you were a stingy bunch in your comments yesterday. No one wanted to give me some of their snow. Didn't your mothers ever teach you to share?
Well, its all right. I totally understand. I wouldn't want to share either.
I'm off to visit some of your blogs before I force myself to go back to sleep. For the time being though, I am up and enjoying the sound of the rain. I love that sound.
Have a Blessed day today.
Not only is it hot but the air is so dry that my skin is flaking off all over the floor. Not the kind of snow I really appreciate this time of year.
This isn't really the kind of snow I like either. Don't you wish your house could look like this?
We got a package stuffed full of these wonderful snowflakes. Paige was running around the house throwing them in the air screaming "It snowing, It snowing".
Tyler climbed into the box and the other kids had fun making it snow on him.
It even "snowed" on the toys.
Those of you with cold weather please send some our way. It's just not the same drinking hot chocolate by the fire and listening to Christmas carols when the temp outside is in the 80's and 90's.
Thank You very much.
Today is the beginning of the Advent Celebration for Christians. The word Advent means "coming" or "arrival" and is celebrated beginning on the fourth Sunday before Christmas each year.
Our family has never been very good about putting aside a special time each day to celebrate Advent. This year it is my hope and prayer that things will be different.
I have planned something for each day and everyone has agreed to meet around the Advent Wreath at 6:00 p.m. for our family celebration.
As with all things I will have to be flexible. I had some special things planned today and then had to change gears when I found out Dave would not be home (remember he is on an Airplane on his way to a business meeting tomorrow a.m.).
So, being the ever flexible (ha ha ha) mother of five, I ordered pizza and we began our celebration around the dining room table.
We have a wreath made out of fresh pine which smells yummy. Four candles are placed around the wreath and a white candle which symbolises Christ's purity is placed into the center. Zachary, our oldest son, lit the first candle of Advent tonight which is the Candle of Hope that reminds us that Christ will come again to fulfill all of God’s promises to us.
After the candle was lit and the kids were eating there pizza I read out loud from this Advent book. This book is wonderful and really held both the older and younger kids interest.
In years past I have hung an extra stocking on the mantel with all the others to represent Jesus. Inside the extra stocking were 24 pieces of paper, each with something written on it to help you remember the reason for the season. This year I put the little pieces of paper inside our Advent house. Each night one of the children will take a piece of paper out from behind the door for that evening and read it to the family. Tonight's piece of paper said this:
All that is asked of us from you, Jesus, is that we love one another as you have loved us.
The more we share our heart, our life, our love, the fuller we become. Thank You, God.
We discussed the meaning of what was written for a few minutes. The family is suppose to implement what ever the piece of paper says for the next 24 hours. The kids were a little agast that they had to actually love each other like Christ loves them for a whole 24 hours, but they agreed to give it a try. As of bedtime I wasn't feeling a whole lot of love. Tyler burped on his sister just to gross her out which defintely worked. When reminded of the gift he was suppose to be giving Jesus he apologized and said he forgot.
In the last two minutes.
Since we talked about it.
Oh well, he has a whole 23 hours and 50 minutes to work on it.
Lastly, I got this idea from here. I wrapped all of our Christmas books and placed them in a basket under the Christmas tree. Each night one of the younger children will pick a book, unwrap it, and then we will read it together as a family. This was a big hit.
All in all our little celebration took around 20 minutes and the entire family took part and seemed to enjoy it. We are looking forward to tomorrow night when Dave will be home and we can all be together.
I hope you enjoyed me sharing about our families plans for Advent. Please let me know if you do anything special or have any family traditions you would like to share.
Merry Christmas my friends.
Wow, I can't believe it has been 5 days since I last posted. I guess I took an unannounced bloggy break.
Life has been crazy busy.
I got the house decorated and all the presents purchased. Now if I could just get some things wrapped I would feel a whole lot better. Maybe tomorrow.
We are the only house on our street that does not have our outside lights up yet. Never mind that no one on the surrounding streets has there's up either. Our kids think we are awful for being the only non lit house on our street. Guess what we'll be doing after church tomorrow?
Poor hubby. Tomorrow is his birthday and not only does he have to get the lights up (so his children will stop bugging him) he has to take a 5:00pm flight to Arizona for a business meeting Monday morning. On his birthday. I feel really bad about that.
So, to remedy the situation, the kids and I had a meeting and we decided that tomorrow is not their Dad's birthday. It is actually on Monday. We will celebrate and pamper him when he gets off the plane Monday afternoon. That way he can relax a little and not have to hurry off in the middle of our little celebration.
This past week we also had Paige's first appointment with her Neurologist. I wasn't really impressed. He basically told us that he felt she had a speech disorder (yeah buddy we already know that) combined with a disorder on the Autism Spectrum. Or, an Autism Spectrum Disorder. So, what does that mean? Uh, about a million things. There are a lot of disorders on the Autism Spectrum. He didn't seem real interested in helping us figure out which one it is. I asked about some new therapies I heard about and he basically said he didn't think they worked. He was definitely old school and basically told us to continue sending her to speech therapy and he would see her in another year when it would be easier to diagnose a specific disorder.
Part of the problem was Dave and I didn't go into the meeting very well prepared. I thought he was going to suggest tests, therapies, and other avenues of treatment. Well, I was obviously very naive in my thinking.
As a result we are requesting a second opinion from a different neurology group. We would like them to do a blood test and check for chromosomal abnormalities and also do an MRI. After reading up on Autism and other disorders I found this to be a pretty standard first approach. Hopefully the new doctor will agree with us.
In other news our social worker is coming to our house on Wednesday for our Home visit. I am a little stressed about getting the house in order by Wednesday night. I only have Tuesday what with Dave's birthday party on Monday. If you saw what my house looks like right now you would be stressed to. Hopefully he won't look in closets.
Well, I better go. My sweet 11 year old girl is sleeping next to me. She went ice skating this afternoon for 5 hours and came home with a bad head and stomach ache. She has just fallen off to sleep so I am going to try and sneak back downstairs to clean the kitchen before I head to bed.
Have a blessed Sunday tomorrow.