Friday, July 29, 2011


Yeah, that's me. 

We leave super duper early Sunday morning for our vacation to Florida and I've done nothing to get ready except laundry. 

And as you can see I'm so concerned that I'm getting right to it.  ;)

I'll be mad at myself tomorrow.  I know this. 

I didn't get much accomplished on my pre-trip sewing list.  I believe it consisted of shorts for the girls, a beach blanket, beach robes, and dresses.  Actually, I'm not even sure the dresses were on the list.  But that's all that's finished.  Or almost finished, actually.  I still need to pound in the grommets on two of them.  Maybe, if I have time tomorrow (ha ha ha) I'll stitch together some bandanas for a beach blanket. 

I think I'm going to start a new afghan while we're gone.  The Stained Glass Window afghan I've been drooling over for months.

It's going to be a gift for someone.  A hush-hush top secret gift.  So don't tell, OK?  =)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Yay for an answer

As you know if you read my post about Izzy being in the hospital, we left without an actual diagnosis.  We knew what wasn't wrong with her and since she was better, I was glad to leave, but a bit frustrated that we didn't have an answer to what had caused her so much pain.

Today we had our follow up appointment with the pediatrician, and I didn't expect much more than "oh, good to see she's better, hope it doesn't happen again."  But, surprisingly, I was told what they felt was wrong with her. 

Mesenteric Adenitis.

Don't worry, it sounds way scarier than it is.  It's when the lymph nodes in the abdomen become inflamed, usually due to a viral infection in the intestines.  It mimics the symptoms of appendicitis - fever, severe abdominal pain.  I'm usually pretty cautious about investigating things online, because I know so many people who go overboard with that and end up making a mountain out of a mole hill, but I did do a little research just to make sure I understood what it was and if there was anything to worry about.  I really feel like I don't need to worry about it at all, unless it happens again, at which time we'd be headed to the pediatric gastroenterologist to find out what's going on.  But I'm going to keep the positive outlook that it won't happen again.

So, even with having all three kids bouncing off the walls and Izzy having to give a little blood, the appointment was far better than I had hoped.  Actually, my main irritation was that the lab chick gave Izzy some gloves as a reward for being so tough, and the doctor all but freaked out when she saw the gloves and went off on a tangent about my kids choking to death on them.  Talk to your staff about it, don't try to take my kid's reward from her after she just had her finger stabbed.  I mean, do I need to revert to cutting up her hot dogs and put her back in a rear-facing car seat while I'm at it?  She's 5.  I am pretty sure that I've covered the "don't put balloons in your mouth" subject with her and to her a glove is a balloon with fingers. 

Anyway.  I think I went off on a tangent there.  ;)  Suffice it to say, we know what was wrong, we know she's better, people make me crazy, and that's all folks!

Monday, July 25, 2011

My little trooper.

I would love to put up a post of all the fun we had this past weekend, but truth is, we didn't have any.  Far from it. 

Saturday, Isabelle started to complain that her tummy hurt.  Since the girls like to walk the fine line bordering hypochondria (don't all kids?), we didn't think much of it until we went to have lunch at McAlisters and she begged us to go home before we ever got our food.  We tried Pepto and later some baby laxative, thinking maybe it was just an upset stomach or constipation, but nothing helped.  By late afternoon, I was concerned enough to call the medical exchange to talk to a nurse, who told me since it had been going on all day that we should go to the ER.

I debated taking her to an after-hours clinic instead, but finally chose the ER because I figured we'd end up there if they needed to do any kind of testing.  She started running a fever while we were waiting to be triaged, and the poor thing was walking like a little old lady and needed me to help her out of her chair. 

super trooper
Passing the time reading a crochet pattern... we were bored.

They ruled out a UTI fairly quickly and were concerned that it was her appendix, so she had to get an IV and a CT scan.  She pretty much made everyone's night at the ER because you could tell they totally dreaded the idea of doing anything to her that might upset her, but she took everything in stride, never complaining, and you could just see the relief on their faces. 

super trooper
She didn't even flinch.

They gave her morphine and I expected her to be flying high or drop off to sleep, but you couldn't tell she had anything, other than she didn't complain about her tummy anymore.  I had never had a CT before, so I was nervous for her.  She didn't mind it at all, even being in there all alone (they had me stand in the "control room.")

super trooper
Her stickers for being so good.

The CT was pretty inconclusive - in fact, they didn't even see her appendix at all.  They offered to send us home, but recommended that we stay for observation, so we did.

The doctor the next morning told us that she wanted to have the surgeon on call check Iz out since they couldn't rule out appendicitis.  And that freaked me out.  When my little sister was 13, she had exploratory surgery for almost the same situation.  But the surgeon didn't think it was her appendix, so I was relieved of that worry. 

We almost got to go home Sunday night, but then her tummy was hurting again and they gave her more morphine and told us to sit tight for another night.

It was noon on Monday before we saw the doctor again and Isabelle was feeling much better.   She had been dragging her little IV pole all over the room, getting mad at me over everything, and we were both really anxious to just get out of there.  The doctor poked and prodded without Izzy indicating that anything hurt, so we got to go home. 

It's somewhat frustrating that we don't know what was going on.  In fact, by Sunday evening I was having to make myself think about how she was walking around hunched over in pain, or else I was getting really aggravated thinking that all this was total overkill.  Monday morning, when she was obviously better, it was hard not to be annoyed at the fact that I hadn't showered or even brushed my teeth since Saturday morning, but I was glad that they took everything so seriously.  And you know, even though it wasn't something dire or extremely scary, seeing your kid in a hospital bed is so stressful.  I had to hide in the bathroom a couple of times so she couldn't see just how stressful it was.  She was such a trooper.  She wanted to go home and she wanted that thing out of her arm, but she didn't really get upset about any of it until the very end. 

I was really touched by all the concern and prayers from friends and family.  My phone died Saturday night, so my sister kept people up to date on facebook.  My parents drove an hour just to see how Isabelle was since they couldn't reach me on my phone.  It was especially touching to see a couple of my friends that I had kind of been shutting out step up and be there for me.  That meant an awful lot.  My sister also helped watch the other two girls so Bill could come see Isabelle and go to work and thankfully wasn't upset that her poor dogs were neglected for about 24 hours (I was supposed to be feeding them and letting them out while she was out of town) .  And my husband was great, of course.  The house wasn't a disaster when I got home and he had gone grocery shopping.  My only wish was that he had called before coming up to the hospital.  I would have given an arm or leg for a toothbrush, my crochet bag, and a book.  I felt pretty helpless at the hospital... I couldn't leave the room, of course, so I had to depend on other people.  I'm just not one to easily depend on people.  It was nice to know that no one was going to let me down.

Isabelle has been just fine all evening... in fact, I think she was trying to make up for two whole days of not being a bully, because she was a little difficult.  Hopefully a good night's sleep in her own bed will help her dial back it down to normal levels.  =)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

To tat or not to tat

I've mentioned before that my husband and I are huge fans of the state park system here in Arkansas.  When we go looking for things to do, it's pretty common for him to scour their website looking for someplace we've never been.  One place we've not been, despite the fact that it's pretty close to us, is the Plantation Agriculture Museum.  He was looking at it online last night and discovered that they have a free introduction to tatting class today, and he told me I should go.

First, it's pretty rare for him to suggest that I go do something on my own.  Not that he doesn't think I deserve some "me time" or anything.... we just don't get a lot of family time and both of us enjoy having the other around to share the parenting duties a bit, since we do it solo most of the week.  Second, I need another hobby like I need a hole in the head.  I sew, I crochet, I knit, I read.  I'm already a horrible housekeeper and don't get enough sleep as it is.  My list of projects I feel I must accomplish is usually longer that the life expectancy of a tortoise. 

I had a vague idea of what tatting is, but since my curiosity was piqued, I had to look it up.  Tatting is like crochet, but not.  Kind of like crocheting is like knitting, but not.  You use thread and a tool called a shuttle to make intricate designs, like in lace and doilies.

Source: via Tabatha on Pinterest

I watched a few videos, and it doesn't look really hard, but it is intricate and I'm not entirely fond of working with thread.  The first few times I worked with crochet thread, it gave me a terrible headache.  But you can make some of the most beautiful things...

Tatted lace

Source: via Julia on Pinterest

A dragonfly!

Source: via Gloria on Pinterest


I'm conflicted.  On one hand, I'm up for creating anything beautiful.  On the other, I really don't need the distraction.  But man, it's pretty.  Hmmm.  I don't think I'll go today.  I'm sure they'll have another class at some point and if not, there are books and youtube.  I'll file it up there with needle felting, another craft I'm dying to learn. 

Source: via hilary on Pinterest


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ramona strikes again!

Alternate title:  It's Pat!

I mentioned before how Isabelle has an alter-ego.  Well, she actually has two.  We have Isabelle, the bully.  Then we have Greenie, the sweetheart.  And finally, we have Ramona.  You know Ramona.

Source: via Kristi on Pinterest

Ramona is the mischief maker, and she's actually been pretty tame lately. Sure, Isabelle has been mischievous, but trust me, she's been worse.

Yes, that is my living room covered in powdered sugar.  I had to rent a Rug Doctor and we don't even have carpet.  That was about two years ago.

That would be carrot cake mix and peanut butter. I can still remember the smell.

Sharpie.  And it wasn't just her feet.  We're talking face, too. 

She's tried to make "coffee" for her Daddy by combining half the contents of my spice rack. The smell of that lingered for days and consequently made me nauseous for days.  She's cut several skeins of  yarn into itty bitty pieces.  She made a duct tape spider web in between the bunk beds (she won't do that again... she got her hair stuck and it was pretty painful for her).  There are more spoons buried in my backyard than in my utensil drawer.

She's a mess.  She's the cause of most of my gray hair.  Honestly.

Want to know what her favorite mischief tool is?

Scissors.  Are you kind of seeing where I'm going with this?  Because anyone who knows me knows what happens when Isabelle, aka Ramona, gets scissors.

I called my husband today, as I usually do, and he asked me when I was planning on going to get my hair cut, because I've mentioned a few times that I think it's time to lose several inches.  I told him I had no definite plan, because I don't, and he said "well, I was thinking you could take Isabelle with you when you went."

Um.... why?

She decided she no longer wants to look like Rapunzel.  She doesn't want long hair.  So, she got some scissors (which were in the hall closet, which has a door knob cover on it - not that even a locked door will stop her - trust me.) and gave herself a haircut.

Can someone shoot me now?  I've lost count of the times this child has cut her hair, or cut her sisters' hair.  She knows better.  I know she does.  Whenever I do let her have scissors, she always says "I promise not to cut my hair." 

Bill asked her why she did it and when she said she didn't want long hair, he asked her why she didn't just ask for us to take her for a haircut.  She said, "oh..." 

Anyway, I asked for Bill to send me a picture and he said it wasn't that bad.  That should have been clue #1 that it was.  He said it just would need a trim, maybe some tapering.  Clue #2.  Tapering?  Like a bowl cut?  Oh well.... I thought we might end up with a chin length bob or something.

I walked in the door after work and looked at my child.  I said, "It's not bad?!?!  She looks like Pat Benetar!"  My husband proceeded to choke on the hot dog he was eating. 

She has a mullet.  She looks like Pat Benetar and Joe Dirt had a baby together. 

The picture doesn't really show the extent of the damage, I know.  I really don't know how they'll fix it. 

I guess I need to call around and see how young the beauty colleges around here accept students, because this child is destined to be a hairdresser. 

I don't know what to do with her.  Short of a lockbox for all things scissory (and I've tried that - I lost the key and have scissors locked up that I can't get into for myself!), she can get into every locked door around here.  She can pick locks, no lie.  Should I give her "scissor time" to try to get it out of her system?  Get her a Barbie head and let her go to town cutting the doll's hair? 

This is our first major incident of the summer... last summer they got in so much trouble I had to work part time.  So, at least there's that.  Unfortunately, we have 3 more weeks until school starts.  At least I'm off one of those weeks.  Fingers crossed we can contain Ramona that long.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

My kids make it all better

I had a very frustrating day at work.  People were just rude to me and I was working on small claims stuff, which is by far my least favorite part of my job.  So I was really glad to get home.  My husband warned me that the girls were being little terrors, though, so I wasn't quite sure being home would be much better.

But, it was.  My kids always do stuff that just make me so happy to have their little personalities in my life.

First, the littlest two decided to nap!  Sweet!  They were both asleep by the time Bill left for work, so it was just Olivia and I.  She wanted to type, so I opened up Word and she composed a letter while I just laid my lazy bum on the couch and spelled words to her.  She's 6, you know.  There are things she does that make me think she's going to be such a huge nerd and I love it.  The letter was to my sister, so I copied and pasted it into an email and sent it to her.  It's so cute.

Zoe woke up and realized her Daddy had already left for work.  My little Daddy's Girl was heartbroken.  "He didn't kiss me goodbye."  Tears running down her chubby little cheeks.  It was so sad, but so sweet.  I told her he did kiss her, I promised her that he wouldn't leave without kissing her and she said, "I don't feel like he kissed me."  She wanted me to call him immediately regarding the issue, but I got away with just sending a text.  I am fairly certain that he will hear all about it in the morning.

Now, Isabelle has an alter-ego.  Her name is Greenie.  Isabelle tends to be a little bit of a (read: total) bully with her sisters.  They won't fight back, either.  She was torturing them, so I had to sit her in time out next to me and I asked her what her problem is.  She said "It's because you call me Isabelle.  Izzy is a mean name."  Of course.  Greenie is the nice version of Isabelle.  So I promised to call her Greenie and she promised to be nice.  And oddly enough, it works.  If she gets rowdy enough and tells me that calling her Greenie will make her nice, it usually does.  My little split-personalitied child.

Isabelle not liking her nickname of Izzy is total karma for me.  Growing up, I was called Jenny and I hated it.  When I was about 10, I demanded that no one call me Jenny ever again.  And to this day there is only one person who ever calls me Jenny and that's my older sister's best friend.  Actually, I probably should have stuck with Jenny... I know a billion Jennifers and very few Jennys... I might actually respond to my name if I was called Jenny.  I just don't think of myself as a Jenny.  Now I have a kid who dislikes her nickname.  And I so love calling her Izzy.  That was one of the best things about naming her Isabelle, I could call her Izzy.  I never once thought of calling her Belle or anything of the sort.  Izzy fits her.  I still haven't figured out where "Greenie" came from and I doubt I'll ever really get into calling her that - and she's been insisting on it for months now.  But I guess I should be more understanding....

Monday, July 18, 2011

Hammer Time!

And now that I have that song stuck in your head, let's carry on...

The other day I had an idea.  I was thinking of our trip to Florida and taking pictures of the girls on the beach and wondering what I wanted them to wear.  Did I want to make something, and if I do, what?  Then I just had this vision of a dress with lace straps that are threaded through grommets.  I have obsessed over this idea for days now.  I've been just chomping at the bit to bring this idea to life. 

I had 3 yards of pink linen that I bought for something else that I just can't motivate myself to make.  That's more than enough for 3 dresses.  When I went to buy light bulbs for our laundry room yesterday, I strategically planned my trip so that I could pop in to buy some grommets and lace.  But yesterday was Laundry Day, so I couldn't sew.  And I wasn't sure I would be able to today, because I was so tired earlier.

Well, I caught my second wind and took off!

The dress itself is very simple.  I took some measurements and drafted a simple, simple pattern.  Sewed it up minus the hem (and I might not hem it, I'm kind of digging the raw edge.... we'll see) and then came the fun part.


I love my handy-dandy hammer.  Seriously.  But don't tell my husband, because I love to drive him insane by using other items to hammer.  I once used a toy hammer to put a nail in the wall and he almost had a stroke.  Shoes, the end of a screw driver.... he can't stand it.  He's very adamant that the right tool be used for the right application.  And his Snap On balance shows it.  Blech.  But I do love my hammer and I loved sitting out on the concrete step pounding the daylights out of those grommets.  It was awesome.

I kind of wish I had more lace to work with... and I might try to find more.  4 feet per dress does not go as far as I had thought.  I am a horrible judge of distance.  It'll work, but I'm not satisfied!

So... here is my dress so far.  On a hanger.  The drawback of sewing while the kids are sleeping.

Planning some awesome beach pics in this.

The picture doesn't really do it justice.  It looks really straight, but it's more A-line.  You'll just have to take my word on it until I get some beach pictures.  Maybe I'll make a tutorial.  It's ridiculously simple and grommets are far easier to put on than you would think. 

I've been sitting here glancing over at it and I'm so in love with it.  It's simple enough that I think I can make two more without wanting to scream.  

I love it when my ideas work out the way I want. 

Momma-naps vs Daddy-naps

My husband and I work opposite hours so that we can keep the girls out of daycare, so we have the day pretty much split where he's alone with them half of the day and then I'm alone with them half of the day.  And since our kids seem to be mutants who don't require sleep and keep us up at night more often than not, there are days when we are just so tired we need a nap.  But, of course, the kids won't.

Last night, I woke up feeling trapped in bed.  I guess I didn't lock my door (and the kids have some kind of radar that know this) because Zoe came in and made a little nest on my legs.  The other two were beside me, only at first, I thought Bill was home and already in bed.  It took me a few minutes to figure out what was going on.  I extracted myself and made the girls go back to their beds (with much wailing and gnashing of teeth) and didn't get back to bed for probably half an hour.  I woke up in the morning feeling like I never slept at all... I don't do well on interrupted sleep.  I do better going to bed half an hour later than to lose half an hour in the middle.

So, I was so tired that I felt ill earlier.  And cranky.  And the girls are kind of crabby, too (they got back up once Bill got home...).  It was just turning into a bad evening.  So I decided I needed a nap, no matter what. 

Source: via Emilee on Pinterest

It's not uncommon for my husband to doze off while watching the girls - I swear he's borderline narcoleptic, he can fall asleep anywhere, anytime.  When he does it, though, it's usually a disaster waiting to happen.  The girls take advantage of it and create the worst messes you can imagine and he doesn't notice a thing.  Daddy-naps are bad.

I, however, have perfected the art of napping while kids are awake.  First, make sure the girls have just had a snack or dinner - otherwise they'll nag you for food.  Second, lock the gate to the kitchen.  That's where the most tempting mess-making materials are.  Third, invite the kids to snuggle up around you on the couch... it keeps you warm and you can feel the movement if they get up.  Pretty much anytime I actually lay on the couch, which is rare, the girls feel it's an invitation to dog-pile on Mommy.  And the fourth, and most important, might just be a gift that only mothers have.... sleep with your ears on.  I can hear everything when I nap, but still be asleep enough to feel refreshed afterwards. 

I napped through the better part of a Backyardigans episode and I feel human again.  I may actually be able to accomplish something tonight.  You know, before I stay up way too late =)

Sunday, July 17, 2011


I have so many plans in my head, especially sewing right now.  But this weekend (aside from today), I did not feel even remotely crafty.  I went two days without touching a hook or needle.  Today I wanted to sew, but it was laundry day and it's just a big mess in my room  until I get all the clothes put up, so I couldn't get to the sewing machine.  Bummer.

Instead, I worked on Zoe's blanket for the first time in quite a while.  I got the first two rows done really quickly and have just been dragging on the third row.  I finished the third row up today and started making the flowers for the fourth row, so I don't feel like such a slacker.  However, I showed it to Zoe and she said "you need to do more, Mom."  They're just never satisfied.  ;)

Do me a favor and pretend my couch isn't hideous, OK?

That's 1/4 of the way done now.  I think I'll make faster progress on it now that Big Brother is on... hey, don't judge... we all have our guilty pleasures.  =)  Oh, and Project Runway starts soon, too.  That will be 4 hours a week where I'm going to have my butt parked on the couch and can work on it. 

I have two other works-in-progress right now (well, the ones I'm likely to work on anytime soon).  Here is my dragonfly shawl so far...


And another shawl that I'm knitting...


It's hard to really tell anything about the knitted shawl while it's on the needles.  I'm really not in love with either shawl at the moment.  It's hard to work on something I'm not loving.  But since I have some sewing that I really want to accomplish before we go on vacation, I can take a break from them without guilt.  I want to make some shorts for the girls, I am thinking of making a beach blanket out of bandannas, I have an idea for dresses for the girls....  oh, and beach robes.  That's quite a bit for two weeks.  I need to prioritize and just get to it starting tomorrow.  =)

Friday, July 15, 2011

That's cool!

My sister's BFF is in town this week.  She brought her mother and her dog, so they opted to stay in a hotel, which meant they had access to a pool.  She wanted to see the girls before heading home, so she invited us to come over to play in the pool. 

Two summers ago, Zoe wouldn't so much as dip her toes in a pool.  She was terrified of water.  Last summer, she would go in, but only if she was latched to someone the entire time.

Look at her this summer...


That's Zoe, floating on her back all relaxed on a noodle.  It's like she turned into a frog.  As long as she had that noodle, she was invincible.  She swam all over that pool, and she'd get mad if you tried to help her.  I wish I had more pictures of her in the water, but it was almost impossible to get one on my phone since I couldn't see the screen in the sun and I wasn't going to bring my real camera out there.  But she didn't mind getting water in her face and she just had this cute little grin going on the whole time... she was very pleased with her new-found love of the water.

Her sisters discovered the joy of jumping into the pool.  I swear I tried to discourage it, but I was the only one.  Zoe decided she wanted to try to jump in, too.  It was the funniest thing I have ever watched.  She wrapped her noodle around her waist and she'd start to jump and back down.  Start, back down.  Over and over.  She'd lose her grip on her noodle and then spend a few minutes trying to wrap it back around her.  She finally did jump, which was about the time I decided pool time should be over.  I couldn't take that much of my kids being daredevils.

We had lots of fun, though. 


I can't wait to see their faces when they see the ocean in a little over two weeks (we didn't have to cancel the trip... Bill had a few aces up his sleeve in regards to the tire issue)


That's hot.

We had a little excitement today at work.  Our fire alarms started going off right as I was about to leave for lunch.  We had to move patients and blah blah blah.  The fire department took forever to get here, which was pretty disconcerting, even if we were almost positive it was a false alarm.  We think the AC guys working on the roof somehow managed to set it off. 

So we waited and waited for the fire truck to arrive.  And then these two guys come barrelling in the door in full gear.  The tall one even had an axe.

I never realized how hot firemen really are.  Oh my.

They weren't particularly gorgeous in the face, but when they walked by me, I just had this urge to swoon, yes - swoon, so the tall one would catch me.  How crazy is that?  I've never really considered myself a uniform kind of girl, but I'm going to have to reconsider that stance. 

Source: via Rachel on Pinterest

Obviously not one of today's firefighters.... since there was no actual fire or smoke.

Trust me, they're even more swoon-worthy in real life.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I'm coming around

When digital photography took off, I stubbornly refused to go digital for a long time.  I love the look of pictures taken on film.  Our wedding photographer shot both digital and film photos and I could tell a big difference and didn't like the digital photos much.  But eventually I bought a little digital camera to take just around the house kind of pictures to cut some of the expense of developing photos and then my husband got me a DSLR and I haven't touched film in years.  Considering the number of photos I take, I've paid for my expensive DSLR many times over.  And now you really can't tell much difference since the quality of digital photography just gets better all the time.

My current technology hold out is eReaders.  I don't own a Kindle or Nook or anything of the sort, despite the fact that I read.  A lot.  I love the feel of a book in my hands.  One of my friends told me that I'm the only person she knows who can read a paperback without breaking the spine, which can't be true since all the books I borrow from my sister are pristine, like they just came off the bookstore shelf. 

Source: via Adia on Pinterest

I'm starting to reconsider, though.  I don't buy books anymore, and am ready to box up all the books I have here, since my kids like to scatter them about the house.  Plus, I rarely reread a book, so I don't really need to keep it on hand.  There are a few I would never part with, but for the most part, I'm ready to get rid of the whole lot of them.  I generally get my books at the library, but our library is tiny so I have to request books from neighboring libraries and wait for them to be delivered to my library.  It takes a few days, which isn't all that inconvenient to someone with patience.  I'm not someone with patience. 

I started thinking that it would just be awesome to be able to download a book from the library onto my eReader.  It would be free (of course, it would disappear after a while, but like I said, I don't need to keep them), I could get it as soon as I want it, and I wouldn't have to worry about whether or not there is a parking space at the library (there usually isn't).  And I wouldn't have to be on a waiting list for popular books.  Plus, my kids couldn't lose my bookmark - which happens daily.  I try to tell myself I could even take it to the gym, but I'm not sure how well I would be able to read and do the elliptical.  I'm not extremely coordinated and it doesn't take much to throw me off my stride.  Plus, I can't read and listen to music, and I need my music at the gym. 

Source: via Edie on Pinterest

I might even be geeky and make it a bookish cover.

So, maybe I'll dive into the eBook age before too long.  We'll see.  Until then, I need to see when my sister will be home so I can get the rest of the Sookie Stackhouse series.  I'm feeling a little obsessed.  ;)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

It's been one of those days already

It's not even 7:30am and I am so done with today.

Source: via Ariane on Pinterest

That's me and my little black rain cloud.

I wake up at 4am.  =P  My kids are watching a Barbie movie.  Why?  Why must you children do this?  Why can't you sleep?  It's not like they're teenagers trying to stay up all night.  They're little kids.  Little kids who should sleep like 12 hours straight or something.  More than 8 for sure.

Then I noticed a text on my phone so I checked it and it was from my coworker asking me about what time I was coming into work today.  She sent it at like 4pm yesterday.  I don't pay much attention to my phone. =)  I remembered that we don't have any patients and therefore I don't have to get to work at 5:30. Ugh.  I felt like Dante from Clerks, but instead of "I'm not even supposed to be here today!", I wanted to scream "I'm not even supposed to be up this early today!"

I checked my facebook page and then noticed a post my husband made before he went to bed.  About his flat tire that he had to change in the not-so-great part of town.  Man, that sucks.  Oh, but wait... he drove the van to work.  Man, that really sucks.  If it were the truck, I'd say, let's try to patch it and let it go at that.  In the van.... well, sure we can take it to see if they can patch or plug it.  However, I don't really feel comfortable driving to Florida on a patched tire.  And if we buy a new tire, or rather 2 new tires because you don't just buy one new tire, we pretty much aren't going to Florida anyway.  There have just been too many little things happen to make me think maybe it's not such a good idea, but I kept planning on.  Well, this puts a big dent in the vacation budget, which was tight to begin with, so maybe it's just best to not go this  year. 

After much internal debate about going back to sleep for a little bit or just going to the gym, I decided since I slacked off for two weeks that I can't very well slack off again just two days back into it.  My heart just wasn't into it, but oddly enough, it was one of my better workouts calorie burn-wise.  I don't know why that is, but it seems like the more I have to drag my butt through a workout, the better my calorie burn turns out. 

I stopped at Sonic to get an ice water, because they have the best ice water, and almost dumped the entire large cup into my lap... the lid popped off.  I put it back on and headed in to work.  I started some coffee brewing and went to my desk, where the lid proceeded to pop off of my cup again, spilling the remainder of my drink all over my desk.  Luckily it was more ice than water, and luckily I just got a large and not a Route 44.  Luckily no one else was there to hear me swearing like a sailor.  And luckily it didn't fry any electronics. 

See, I'm trying to put a positive spin on it. 

I was almost afraid to go get coffee.  I figured I had probably done something to make the machine blow up or something.  Am I cursed today?  I'm trying to tell myself things can only go up from here, but we all know that's not really true. 

Source: via Emme on Pinterest

I think I'll move to Australia.  (Isn't that what he says?  It's been a while...)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sucked In

That's actually a really bad pun, even if you don't know it yet.

I must confess that my lack of serious craftiness is because I've been reading.  I love to read, but I go through spells as to how much I read.  Earlier in the year, it was taking me over a month to read a book.  Currently, I'm about to finish my second book in about a week. 

I was an early reader.... I could read before Kindergarten.  I was reading Nancy Drew probably by the second grade and just haven't stopped reading since.  I remember in high school even reading my mom's trashy romance novels because I had nothing else to read.  That's desparation there.  ;)  Trashy romance is where I have to draw the line.  I'm sure some of what I read toes that line, but if there's a woman swooning and falling out of her corset into the arms of a Fabio wannabe, I can't make myself read it.


However, since I do read for entertainment, I read almost entirely fiction.  I have no desire to read a biography of anyone.  I only passed History in school because I have (or rather, had) a freakish memory that would at least get me past the tests.  I really couldn't have cared less about it.  But honestly, I only read to be entertained and to escape.  And I'm not going to be reading the classics for fun.  I do enjoy some of them, but some are just like walking through mud.

I love Dean Koontz and Stephen King, Jodi Picoult and Iris Johansen (NOT her romance books, but like her Eve Duncan books).  One of my new favorites is Jasper Fforde.  He is amazing.  I have my guilty pleasures, too.  I was late to the Evanovich party, but I am hooked on the Stephanie Plum books.  I have resisted buying the new one.... I'm waiting for the library to have it available.  And the books that have me hooked at the moment - Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse series. 

My sister loaned me the first two books months ago, along with The Eyre Affair by Fforde.  I ended up hooked on Fforde, and I'm just now getting back to the Harris books.  I do have to admit, she's not like some phenomenal writer, technically... it was kind of hard to get back into the books because she isn't as smooth as Fforde, but she's a good story-teller.  Being a good story-teller can redeem some not-so-great writing, in my opinion.  You can at least be so caught up that you don't realize how badly what you're reading sucks.  Take the Twilight series.  I'll admit to reading them.  I'll admit that I read all 4 monster-sized books obsessively in a week and a half, even buying one of them in hardback, which I never do.  But Stephenie Meyers sold her soul to the devil for those books because they're really not that great.  I was addicted to them, though.  Heck, Evanovich has kept people reading about the same stupid love triangle for seventeen books now.  And I'm sure once I reach the end of the Sookie Stackhouse books, I'll be wondering what I was thinking there, too.  But I'm entertained and that's all that really matters.

So, what are you reading?  I'll be done with the Sookie books in no time at this rate and need to figure out where to go from here.  I still have some Fforde books I haven't read.  Believe it or not, I still haven't read a single Harry Potter book.  I'm intrigued by the Hunger Games books.  Between reading, crocheting, sewing, and knitting - in addition to just LIFE itself - I need about 20 more hours tacked onto the day to be satisfied.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

What a difference a year makes...

I was looking through some pictures yesterday and ran across some from last summer.  And I was just floored at how different my children look.  It's always amazing how much children change from year to year. 

This was Olivia about a year ago. 


As you can see, her diva nature has NOT changed, but the rest of her sure has:


She went from being a little girl to being half grown.  Gah!  I don't know what I'm going to do with her. 

This was Isabelle about a year ago:


The short hair is killing me.  All three of them looked like little boys by the end of last summer.  And she is the culprit.  Anytime she touches scissors now, she says, "I promise I won't cut anyone's hair."

Here she is now:


So much prettier with hair.  Not that she wasn't pretty before... she's gorgeous no matter what.  But I prefer her with hair.  You can still see that little tomboy streak, though.

Now we have Zoe, a year ago:


This was shortly before she got her hair whacked off.  I couldn't bring myself to put up a picture of her shorn.


Thankfully, not as big of a difference.  She's still got the baby thing going on, but she's shedding that pretty fast.  She's starting to come into her attitude, also, if you can't tell by the picture.  My sweet cuddlebug is not quite so sweet sometimes.

Just a year to go from this...


to this...


It's just crazy.  I don't even want to think about how I'm going to feel about this a year from now. Oh my....

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I've never seen Gone With The Wind

I've been too exhausted most of the week to really even think about blogging.  In addition to having to drag myself back to work this week after a wonderful vacation, and then realizing I had forgotten an entire week when counting my days until my next vacation (I'm telling you... my memory is shot... totally shot), my kids had a horrible sleeping week.  They're pretty terrible sleepers anyway, but normally it's just a few days here and there.  It was all. week. long.  I was lucky to eek out 4 hours a night.

We were all so exhausted by Friday, that I forced everyone into a nap when I got home because we were going to a baseball game and I knew the chances of the girls not having major meltdowns depended on it.  We all... all 5 of us... slept about 3 hours.  We were almost late for the game.

I've been having my usual crafty ADD... working on this project one day and a new one the next while planning another.  I'll get some pictures soon.  Nothing even remotely finished, of course.  ;)

Today, we had a family fun day.  We try to do that every Saturday.  We started out by going to the farmer's market, because Bill was dying for some peaches.  We ended up with peaches, pluots (plum/apricot hybrid - Bill was intrigued), butter baker potatoes (my favorite), and pickling cucumbers (so I can try to make refrigerator dills).  And the girls talked us into buying them some earrings from one of the craft vendors.  I could most likely have bought the stuff to make them myself (plus many more) for what we paid, not that it was that much, but still.

She picked these because the beads were in a pattern.  I may have a math nerd on my hands.  =)

After that, we had lunch and entertained our waitress with our shenanigans. 

They're growling at each other.

After that, we went to The Old Mill.  You might recognize it...


I have never seen it (because I could fill a book with all the movies I've never seen), but I've been told that The Old Mill is featured at the beginning (I think) of Gone With the Wind.  It's a favorite picture-taking spot around here.  In fact, we were trying to avoid getting in the way of a wedding going on there today.  I kind of wish I had gotten a picture of this, because it just is so ridiculous to me...  at one point they were taking pictures on the bridge and I kind of did a double take because the groom was laying on the side of the bridge and the bride was laying on top of him.  Then I realized what they were doing.  They were planking.  Seriously?  There are some things in life I just don't get.  Planking is one of them.  And feather extensions.  Don't get that either.  (I must be getting old... sigh...)

I got some fun pictures of the girls while we were there...

My favorite picture of the day.

And just enjoyed the beautiful colors around me...

I'm not an orange fan, but this makes me happy nonetheless

I do have pictures of my other girls, but my husband seems to be downloading the file from hell and therefore seriously impeding my uploading of photos to Flickr.  I'm too impatient to try any more.  ;)

Finally, once we were home, Mr. Bill decided to water the garden, which is an invitation for the girls to put on their swimsuits and go play in the sprinkler.  He remembered we have a tarp in the carport, which soon turned into a homemade slip 'n slide.


Fuzzy picture... the lens fogged up going from my frigid house into the hot, humid backyard.  But the result is that my yard looks far less shaggy and you can't see the neighbor's junkyard of a backyard.  You can see Bill's corn.  He's very proud of his corn.  It's the first year in many that he's managed to get corn to grow taller than knee-high.  The rest of the garden is pretty sad, though.  Being a farm boy does not necessarily make you a gardener.  OK, OK.... so I was in charge of the garden.  I have many talents and gardening is not one of them.  =)

Hope you've had a fun-filled weekend and here's to a better, more well-rested week ahead!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

I hope everyone had a fun-filled and safe holiday today!  Our day was pretty low-key.  My husband doesn't get holidays off, not even Christmas, unless they fall on his normal days off, so there was no grilling or any of that kind of fun.  I decided we did need to do something to celebrate, so I took the girls to our city's local celebration and fireworks.  It's the first time for Zoe and Isabelle, and Olivia was so  young the last time she saw them, that she doesn't remember.  I hadn't taken them before because Izzy really doesn't like loud noises.  But she wanted to go, so we took some precautions...


I don't normally take the girls anywhere really crowded very often if I don't have backup, but no one got lost.  We went to get some flags...


And was lucky enough to have a very talented face painter work on the girls...


I thought the wait for the fireworks to start would be more than the girls could handle, but they were very patient.  Aside from my brilliant idea of parking at the high school and taking the shuttle, thinking it would save us time trying to get in and out (which it didn't), it was a wonderful time.  And Isabelle didn't even really use her ear plugs.  She said she loved it. 


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Burning bridges

Sometimes I think you have to set fire to a bridge just to see what its made of.  I may have finished it off or I might have just cleared the brush away so we can get back to the way things should be.  Only time will tell.

I bottle up emotions.  It's a horrible habit, inherited from my father.  In my entire life, I've seen him truly angry once, and only heard about one other time.  I don't really care to see it again, to be sure.  The only person  I really ever voice my discontent to is my poor husband.  If he makes me mad, he generally knows.  Maybe that's a good thing, at least I don't ever totally fly off the handle.  Much.

I felt a lot of mixed emotions today, listening to my kids talk about some friends of theirs that they haven't seen in about a year because of a bit of a rift between me and their parents.  And then out of the blue, one of them contacted me.  I had to pour out a little bit of my emotions before it just made me explode.  I feel better, even though I don't really know the outcome. 

Sorry to get so personal.  I don't want to be a downer, just need a release valve tonight.  I'm kind of bummed as it is because tomorrow is my last day off of work.  I don't want to go back.  I usually count on my kids to drive me batty enough on my vacations that I'm ready to go back to work for the break.  But they didn't really.  I had a lot of fun this past week.  My boss always told me that she thinks I'm a lot like her and that we are both better mothers for working outside the home (not bashing stay at home moms, just pointing out different personalities).  We are able to make the shorter amount of time we have more special.  I used to agree with her, but I don't know if I've changed or if it's just easier now that the girls are older and not so dependent all at the same time.  I would give anything to stay home with them.  It would be pretty financially devastating, though.  I know people do it on less than what my husband makes, but I don't know how.  And I think the stress of being financially strapped would probably dampen the joy of being at home.  My husband was pretty excited that the house was actually clean this past week, though.  Most of it anyway... I always stop really caring on Thursday.  I'm pretty worthless in most aspects of life Thursday and Friday.  =)

Maybe work won't be so bad... the couple of weeks before my vacation were kind of rough at work.  A lot of personal things going on with coworkers.  I don't want to seem like I don't care about their personal problems, because I do.  It was just a lot to deal with in a short time.  Plus, I only have to work 13 days before my next vacation.  That doesn't make it seem all that bad at all, if I don't think about all the work I need to cram into 13 days.  LOL

Thanks for letting me ramble (assuming you made it this far....).  Here's to a good week.  Have a happy 4th!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

This is going to be the death of me...

This shawl is gorgeous.  You have no idea how badly I want this shawl.  Like right now.  I've been trying to make this thing for months.  But I'm really not sure it will ever happen.

First, I bought the recommended #10 crochet thread.  I had a migraine within 30 minutes of working with it.  I'm not used to such lightweight yarn/thread.  Plus, it looked and felt terrible.  I don't really seem to be all that fond of cotton yarn.  I just finished a sunhat with cotton yarn and didn't really like it much (the yarn, but I'm not crazy about the hat either now that it's finished).

Researching it on Ravelry, I discovered that  some people used lace weight yarn and it looked great, so that is what I went to the yarn store for.  I started working on it a little tonight and it's just making me insane.  I know it will have to be blocked, but it just doesn't even look remotely right.  I tried doubling up the yarn and it looked better, but then I might not have enough yarn and I bought the only skein they had.

I'm starting to think that it just might not be worth it.  But then, what on earth am I going to do with 1400 yards of lace weight yarn?  Ugh.  I don't know.  Maybe I'll just double it up and see how far I can get.  Maybe I'll have to make it a little smaller.   I think I need a different hook, too.  My E hook has a very blunt end compared to all my other hooks and I think I need one that is a little pointier.  Maybe I just need to be a little more patient and get a bigger section done and block it before I start having temper tantrums.

*banging head on wall*

Maybe what I really need is my fairy godmother to just magic me the finished shawl and then we'll all live happily ever after.


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