Friday, November 30, 2007

Survivor Badge

Look what Fussy made for those of us that survived:

Ding Dong

Josh is a bell in the school musical this year. He's very excited. The performance is next week at the PTSA Meeting.

I had to make his costume. Here he is modeling it before we brought it to school yesterday.

And today is the last day of November which means NaBloPoMo is over (for me) after I hit the "publish" button!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Off to see Santa

We went to see Santa on Tuesday. The boys have been very good this year and wanted to make sure Santa knew exactly what they wanted.

Sam's been very excited and has been asking for the "Big GeoTrax" ever since we saw them at W-mark a few weeks ago. What can I say. He loves trains. And goodness knows you can never have too many! Right Grampa?

On that same visit, Josh found this: The Pokemon Battle station. He's been very excited about it and can't stop talking about it. There are a few things here, that need to be noted.

First off, if you look, you will notice it only has 1 star from customer reviews. Granted there are only 3 reviews (on this site) but all of them talk about the poor quality of the product, how their children were disappointed and even one mentions they took it back. I found similar reviews on other sites.

So normally, if the quality is a bit poor and it's something that the boys really like and the price reflects the workmanship, I may "give." But this? It's $50 (almost)! I have no problems spending money on Christmas presents for my kid but this combined with the poor reviews, I cannot justify "Santa" bringing this for him. He's already getting a DS Lite and Pokemon Game (from us), which was about $200 all up.

So now, we have to figure out a way to "Change his mind" about the ONLY thing he's asked Santa for. I think Rich will be able to change Josh's mind. He's good at reasoning with Josh. I just don't want him to be disappointed in that toy. It looks cheap and from the reviews, apparently it IS cheap!

Anyway, here are the pictures of the boys meeting Santa. Sam, you will notice, is carrying his Winnie the Pooh. This is his favorite thing at the moment and will go nowhere with out it. My Aunt Mary & Uncle John gave it to Josh when Josh was born. Josh never really cared for it but Sam LOVES it! Thank you Aunt Mary & Uncle John!


Sam was a bit nervous.

Telling Santa What We Want

They had to take about 8 pictures of the boys before they were both looking. This was the best of the bunch! Feel free to laugh!

santa picture 2

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Future Echos

Several years ago, I gave Rich a Dave Barry desk calendar. One of the days had the following:

We Parents need practical advice on how to handle real-life parenting scenarios: Say you are driving. Your toddler is riding in the back, strapped into her car seat, which you have probably installed incorrectly. Suddenly, your child receives one of those transgalactic radio signals that children get from the Planet of Random Thoughts, and declares: "Birds don't have eyebrows." You agree with this statement. Your child then says: "But I have eyebrows." Again you agree. The backseat is silent for a moment. Then there is a loud wail of anguish. "What's wrong?" you ask. "I CAN'T FIND MY EYEBROWS!!!" the child wails. "It's OK!" you say. "You have eyebrows! On your head! In the front!" "BUT I DON'T FEEL THEM!" your child wails. You can't pull off the road. Your child is getting hysterical. you are starting to wonder if your child did, somehow, lose her eyebrows while in your care, in which case you sill be in serious trouble when you get home.

At the time, Josh was about 2 or 3 and we thought this was hysterical! It's been on our refrigerator for years. When ever I need a chuckle, I read it.

Little did I know that Dave Barry, is clairvoyant. I had the following conversation with Sam yesterday while we were in the car:

Sam: "Mom! I don't have any eyebrows!"

Me: "Yes you do Sam. They are right above your eyes. They are very light and hard to see. Can you feel them?"

Sam: "No!" he starts crying that fake cry of his, "I don't have any eyebrows!"

Me: "Yes you do Sam. I'll show you later."

He calms down (for a bit) then starts crying about something else.


Later we went to see Santa at the mall and we were on the way home. He was playing with his prized Winnie the Pooh stuffed toy.

Sam: "Winnie the Pooh has ears. I have ears too. Winnie the Pooh doesn't have eyebrows."

Me: "Ooookaaaay.... Did you find your eyebrows Sam?"

Sam: "No. I don't have any! I can't see them!!!"

Me: "I'll show them to you when we get home, okay Sammy?"

Sam: sounding a bit worried... "Okay... Mom, are you going to take my head off to show me?"

Needless to say, I laughed so hard I cried.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Life Lesson for my kids -- part 1

I'm calling this "Part 1" because I'm sure there will be more.

Josh has been super grumpy lately -- especially when I tell him we are going someplace that he doesn't want to go -- mainly because it will take him away from his beloved GameBoy and Pokemon game. Which I've had to put a time limit on!

Anyway, he just does NOT WANT TO GO! He stamps his feet and says, "I'm NOT GOING!" and then "Harumphs!" and crosses his arms. Hahaha -- like he thinks he has a choice! Hahaha...

I'm have started telling him that he does not always have control over what happens to him, but he does have control over his reaction. He is in control of whether he chooses to be UNHAPPY and MISERABLE or if he wants to face what he has to do and be HAPPY about it.

I do believe this is true not just about going to Target or the grocery store... but what happens to you in life. Be happy and you'll enjoy life more!

I think I'm going to be reminding BOTH the boys of this quite often!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Genius At Work...

Mommy Bits put me onto this site that will rate your blog's readability. It's called CriticsRant. You type in your blog URL and it will give your blog a score.

cash advance

I think either it's mistaken or I've watched to many "Baby Einstein" DVD's and they've rubbed off.

At least now I know why I don't have many readers but the ones I do have are Top Quality!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

How We Spent Saturday!

It's that time of year again. When the leaves pile up and we have to spend our weekends raking up the millions of leaves that seem to make their way to our back yard.

Most of the day we spent around the house -- Rich watched Liverpool beat Newcastle 3-0 in the morning. He was quite happy with that considering England's elimination from Euro 2008 earlier this week. And Manchester United lost yesterday, so that was good too!

We went out in the afternoon for about an hour and a half and raked up more leaves. Friday we raked up about 11 bags, Saturday we raked 14...

Bags, bags, bags...

The boys had fun "helping" us --

Josh & Sam

In the evening, Josh was invited to a movie with his friend Cade. He came home about 7:30 all hopped up on sugar and McDonald's and popcorn.... It was very funny. He would start talking in a "normal" voice, but then his voice would get louder and louder until he was SHOUTING! It was hysterical! He was very excited and had a lot of fun.

But anyway, we're not looking forward to next weekend when more leaves will fall -- last year we had over 100 bags of leaves over the course of 2 weekends. We're up to 27 (25 from this weekend plus 2 from earlier in the week -- just the front which needs to be done again!).

How many more to go?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Friday's Photos -- The Botanic Gardens

We went to the Botanic Gardens yesterday.

They have a wonderful Children's Garden there that the boys like to run around and play in. Josh and Daddy played "Treasure Hunt" -- when you walk into the Children's Garden there is a big, colorful map and they would look for a "destination" and then try and find their way there by passing different places in the garden. It's not very big, but they had a great time finding different places on the map and exploring the garden.

It was quite interesting to see it right now. They've emptied most of the ponds and fountains because of the drought. It's amazing really that a place that REQUIRES water for it's plants can survive the drought we've got. It must be very difficult for them. But, they are doing it. I wouldn't know if the garden has felt any ill affects from the lack of water.

They had a little train the boys could ride. I only had $4 in cash and the tickets were $2 so they only got one ride. Sam was free.

Cheese Mommy!

All Aboard! Here they go....

All Aboard!

After they were done Sam wanted to watch the train so the boys sat down and "watched." After a bit, they decided to play tag and we ran around the field playing. It was quite cold out so it was nice to run around in the sun trying to warm up.

Watching the Train

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving Recap

I hope everyone had a good day yesterday. Ours was nice and relaxing and the boys had lots of fun!

We got up and had our "traditional" holiday breakfast -- Eggs DayAhead (sausage, scrambled eggs, cream of mushroom soup and cheese -- yummy!)

We'd had some rain Wednesday night - early Thursday morning but it cleared up after breakfast. Normally, we try and go to the park on Thanksgiving morning, but it was not nice enough. We did go out though. We decided to go for a "Family Walk" and train for next year's 5k so we went around "The Circle" (where we live there is a circle that connects neighborhoods together -- it's about 3 miles from our door, around the circle and back to our door -- it's pretty close to the race route).

Josh did really well -- he ran for quite a bit -- just shy of a mile, then he'd walk to catch his breath and run again. He was pretty worn out by the end! Rich carried Sam on his shoulders the whole way and lightly jogged for most of it and he was "in the lead" for most of it. I tried to jog as much as possible. I'm really out of shape! I have some work ahead of me if I want to run next year! Anyway, it took us less than an hour (56 minutes) to go door to door. I was pretty impressed!

After we got back we all needed baths and showers and we had a little rest and a small bite to eat. Then Rich and Josh finished putting up the lights outside (while Sam had a nap) and got done just as a cold front came through. Once Sam got up, the boys put up the new Christmas tree in the basement and I cooked dinner.

Since it was just the 4 of us, we didn't go "all out" -- I only got a turkey breast instead of the whole bird. We also had stuffing, green beans, gravy and roast potatoes. It was really good! Sam loved the turkey and gravy, but nothing else. Josh loved it all!

After dinner we gave the boys the movie Ratatouille and we watched about half of it (we're watching the rest now). We also finished decorating the "basement" Christmas tree.

After the boys went to bed, Rich and I pulled out a puzzle to start, we had some "left-overs" for supper and watched a bit of TV.

The day went quickly, yet we still had time to relax, the boys played, we had some family time -- it was a GREAT Thanksgiving!

And as a bonus -- the boys slept until 5:50 this morning! It was like sleeping in!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

I just wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

May your hearts be filled with Love and Thanks today!

We are spending Thanksgiving with just the four of us. It's times like this when it's both a blessing and a pain to live so far away from our families.

It's nice to not have to "keep a schedule" and try and figure out how to entertain a houseful of people (not to mention cleaning the house before and after). And it's nice to spend the day with just the four of us as a family. Especially after Rich's crazy work schedule earlier this month.

But on the otherhand, I do miss our families on holidays and wish we could see them more often -- or that it wasn't such an ordeal to go visit. Eventhough we can't be together, I am still thankful to have them in our lives!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Shaking the Tree

The boys think if they can shake the tree, the leaves will fall off faster.



Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Story Time Today

I bring Sam to Story Time every Tuesday at the local community center.

It's fun. He is normally quite subdued and sits and listens to the story and then he insists that Ms. Mary play Winnie the Pooh/The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers by Ralph Covert over and over and over again (she will indulge him and play it ONCE!). And then he goes up and helps her sing it. He stands by her, looks at the floor and sings it as quietly as he can -- and when it gets to the Tiggers Bouncing part, he jumps and smiles and then stops and looks down again. It's quite funny actually!

Today's Story Time was a bit unusual... Mary brought her youngest (no school) and Sam and Jack love to chase each other. They were in rare form.

I'm afraid "The Real Sam" came out today!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Today I Love...

I'm late with my Wrapped Emotions Post this week!

The challenge this week:

With Thanksgiving being next week everyone begins to ask the traditional question..."For what are you thankful?" This week let's put a little twist on that thought.

What do you love today?

.... begin listing the things you love today...or whatever day you do the project.No typing on the computer and printing words. It should be done in your handwriting. Make it neat, make it sloppy, make it uniquely yours. Doodle the words, fine line print, bold line print, scribble. Write horizontally, diagonally, backwards, upside down. Give the page some color and pop...paint the page first...collage the page first...color the page with marker. Do not be limited by these suggestions. But WRITE the typing and printing. What is important is that you know what you love today.

One more a creative way include a wrapper from one of the things you love today (or the day you do this).

So, here's my page... It's a bit blurry (sorry) and the "wrapper" is Josh's froggy blanket. He loves it to death and so does Sam.

This was nice. I realize this is just a short snapshot, but I also know I am very blessed to have so much "love" in my life!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Lazy Sunday

We had a busy day yesterday. The James R. Sargeant Lung Cancer Survival 5K Legacy Run & Walk was yesterday.

We had a great time. I helped at the finish line with the timings and Sam ran around playing with his friends. Rich & Josh were at a birthday party having fun! The birthday party was at our local community center in the gymnastics room and Josh has now decided he wants to do gymnastics. I was thinking of signing Sam up anyway so now they both do it.

Today we had no plans. We went to do some pre-Christmas shopping -- we got more lights for outside and we got a few Christmas decorations for around the house. I went grocery shopping while Sam had a nap and the boys are working outside. It's a beautiful day! Rich is getting ready to put up some lights. We normally do it over Thanksgiving but it's so beautiful today he thought he'd at least start getting things ready and start stringing some up.

Josh helped for a bit. But his favorite part was playing in the leaves.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Not much to say, so here are some pictures....

I don't really have anything to write about -- well, I do, but I'm tired and can't really think at the moment. So, I'm posting some pictures of the boys.

Sam with his banana on the way home from the 5k today.

Pictures from last weekend -- toasting marshmellow's on the back deck.

Toasting Marshmellows

Toasted Marshmellow

Sam's oven mitts

Friday, November 16, 2007

Busy Weekend Coming up!

I need to get my post in early today. We're busy. I hope I have time this weekend to keep up.

First, Sam had his annual check up this week. He did really well! After only gaining 1 lb between 12-24 months, he out-did himself this year. He gained 5 lbs!!! And grew 3 inches! He's a big boy now at 32 lbs and 38 inches. That's about where Josh was when he was 4!

When the nurse was going through the milestone "check list" she asked if he feeds himself, and I answered "He CAN when he feels like it" and then she moved on to the next question.

"Does he speak in sentences and can he express thoughts?"

Before I could answer Sam piped up and said, "Yes! I can feed myself because I'm 3 now. I'm a big boy."

I looked at the nurse and in answer to her question said, "Hmmm what do you think?" Then we both laughed.

Anyway, moving on... This weekend is the James R. Sargeant Legacy 5K Lung Cancer Survival race in our neighborhood. Last year we had a great time! It was awesome to see Jim get up out of his wheel chair and cross the line walking, surrounded by his family and friends. I don't think there was a dry eye in the place. It was incredible. I'm so proud of Mary and what she's done to ensure Jim's legacy lives on even now that he's passed away. I found pictures from last year on line. They are here.

Last year, Rich came in 3rd in his age group and 23rd over all. He was hoping to run again, but we're going to Linda Leigh and Andy's for dinner tonight and we're spending the night so he won't be as rested as usual. And Josh was invited to a birthday party at the exact same time as the race. Since I'll be helping Mary, someone has to bring Josh to the party. It's just not possible to do both. So Sam and I will go to the race and Rich & Josh will go to the birthday party.

The nice thing is there is always next year! This is such a fun family and community event. If you live in the area, you should definitely come down and take part.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Thirteen Random Things...

I went to visit my friend CrazedParent and accidentally got tagged just by reading her "13 Things" post and since I'm desperate for content for NaBloPoMo so I guess I'm "it."

I feel like I've been doing these things quite a bit so I need to think of some new stuff -- I'm digging deep here....

1. I have flown around the world twice. Once in each direction.

2. The best display of Christmas lights I have ever seen was in Singapore in late November (I think I was there around this time of year.) It was AWESOME!!!!

3. I love popcorn. In fact, if left on my own, and I didn't have children to feed, I would eat popcorn for dinner more often than not.

4. I love anchovies and use them in cooking quite a bit. But I don't always "tell."

5. I often dream of winning the lottery but don't play very much because I am genuinely disappointed when I don't win. In fact, I don't think I've ever matched more than 1 number.

6. Charlotte's Web was my favorite book growing up. Sometimes I would finish reading it and reread it straight away. I also cried every time I read it when Charlotte died (oops, did I just give away the ending?)

7. I had a security blanket when I was little. I called it my "Daisy Blanket." I think the remnants are still at my parent's house. Apparently, it was yellow with daisy's but I only remember it being completely white (it was very well loved and worn). My mom must have had to sneak it off to the wash!

8. I also had a favorite baby doll named "Julie." She is still at my mom's house and Sam played with her when we were there last July.

9. I am notoriously bad at getting birthday cards in the mail on time. I only ever do the Christmas cards because Rich reminds me. Often.

10. I love sleep. I never pulled an "all nighter" in college because I'd never have been able to function the next day. And I always figured "If I don't know it now, being tired won't help!"

11. I have a BA in Communications, but I loved my History and Religion classes. I didn't major or minor in them because I didn't know what "to do" with them.

12. I'm really bad at math. Really, really bad. Rich says it's a good thing Josh does the math flashcards with me because then I can learn them too!

13. I love the Shopaholic books by Sophie Kinsella. (ooo I just discovered that's just pseudonym she writes under!) They make me laugh out loud and I even convinced Rich to read them. I told him if he wanted to begin to understand how my mind worked, he'd have to read the books.

Okay that's it for now. And since I don't feel like tagging anyone in particular, if you're reading this, "Tag! You're It!"

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Jumpin' Josh Flash

Today Josh has Jump Rope For Heart at school. The kids go out and get pledges and then jump rope to raise money for the American Heart Association. Josh's school has continually been one of the top schools in the Nation for JRFH. It seems every year they are the top K-2 school in the state, if not the nation. Last year they were 3rd in the state overall and 29th Nationally. Not bad.

One of the things they can do is jump in memory or in honor of someone. You don't HAVE to, but Josh really wanted to. But he just didn't know who to jump for. When I suggested he jump "in honor of all those that need the AHA" he balked -- because that wasn't for SOMEONE!

Then I suggested my maternal grandmother. She had open-heart surgery way back in 1976. Josh liked that idea -- so this year he's jumping in her memory. Here's his card, he even decorated it with hearts and him jumping rope ....

I'm really proud of him. He didn't reach his $1,000 goal, but he did end up raising $158.
He was so determined to raise money, he donated all the money he was saving up for a new Pokemon game. Granted it was only $6, but it was ALL his money.
And he was very determined to practice. Here he practicing.

Last night at bedtime he came down and said he was "too excited about JRFH to sleep." What a sweet heart!

I can't go see him do it this year. Sam has his 3 year check up today at the same time. Last year it was so much fun to see the kindergartners attempt to jump. Josh has come a long way since then!

Good Luck Big Guy!!!!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Becareful What You Ask For...

It seems like about once a week, I look over and say to Rich, "Do you think the elves will come tonight to do the dishes?"

Granted, this usually happens after glass of wine or two when I'm really tired, but alas, they have yet to show up.

Until the other night....

I was tired. I could feel a cold coming on (again). Dinner was over and it was time to do the dishes... but the dishwasher was still running.

I told the kids we'd have to stack the dishes and I'd do them later.

Then Josh turned into an elf.

He decided he wanted to do the dishes.

The old fashioned way.

It wasn't long before Sam decided he wanted to do it too.

Josh thought it was fun ....
Now, I can't do the dishes without Sam "helping."
I'm trying to look on the "bright side" that they want to help. And not the fact that it makes it near impossible to do the dishes, empty the dishwasher or get anything done.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Birthday Recap

Wow! Yesterday was a FUN Day!

Compared to last weekend when Rich had to work pretty much round the clock -- this weekend kicked some major fun booty!

As I said yesterday, it was Sam's birthday! He turned a whopping 3 Years Old!!!! I don't really think he knew what the whole "birthday" business was leading up to it, but he's got it down now! Josh was really excited too. He could not believe that there was a BIRTHDAY in the house! It's so cute to see how excited he gets! Anyway, Josh was so excited, he got up at 4:30!!!!! I had to send him back to bed. He came in several times between 4:30 and 6:00 when
we actually got out of bed -- he and Sam played for a bit in Josh's bedroom but they made too much noise.

Josh made a birthday card just for Sam and could not wait to share it!

Josh made this for Sam

So, Rich and I managed to pull ourselves out of bed and we went down to begin the Birthday Festivities...

I'm 3!

Sam was very excited about the presents.

Sam opening presents

Josh even got a present from Nanny & Grandad for doing well on his report card. They wanted him to have the "gift" on Sam's birthday. Another Pokemon GameBoy Game -- "Just What I Wanted!!!!"

Wow! Pokemon!

After breakfast, I made cupcakes to bring to Sam's class today. I did not plan a party for him because, in my opinion, three is just too young. Next year, I'll let him invite 2 or 3 of his friends over, but he doesn't really need anything and he was quite happy with out a party! The four of us went to a bouncy castle place near by in the morning. It's a great place, full of bouncies and slides and all sorts of stuff. We got pizza there for lunch and all three boys had a blast!
I read my book.

After lunch we were invited to a friend's house -- well, her mother's house. Two of Mary's cousins had a birthday last week so we went to play with them and celebrate over there. The boys had endless amounts of fun "Sledding Southern Style" down Mary's mom's hill. It was lots of fun.

Sam & Daddy

Daddy, Sam and Josh

Grass Surfin'


There are a few more pictures on my Flickr page. I did do it several times, but, alas, there is no photographic evidence! The camera is on it's last legs -- Rich thought he got some, but I guess not!

We then went to Josh's end-of-year baseball award party -- for more bouncies and pizza. By the time that was done, we were pooped! Sam and Daddy went back home and Josh and I went back to Mary's for birthday cake and a little more playing.

Josh getting baseball trophy

By the time we got home, the boys were so tired (as were Mommy and Daddy), there were no arguments about going straight to bed! In fact, Rich and I used the old, "Well the clocks went back last weekend... so even though it's 8:30, we feel like it's 9:30" excuse and were in bed fast asleep by 8:30!

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Today is Veterans' Day, Remembrance Day, Poppy Day... whatever you call it, today is a day to remember those who served their country and fought in a war. For those who don't know why today is Remembrance Day -- I found this website that gives a very simple overview. Feel free to read up.
Anyway, in our house we celebrate Remembrance Day by celebrating life. And what better way to celebrate life than to celebrate a birthday...

Today, Sam turned 3. Happy Birthday Big Boy!

We're busy today, so I wanted to get a quick post up in case I don't have time later. I'll be sure to post an update later today or tomorrow!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Colors of Friendship

Kila from Momto3cubs gave me this beautiful award:

Thank you Kila!

I would like to pass this on to ALL my Maya's Mom friends because they are the most awesome group of moms (and dads too) on the web. And if Maya's Mom isn't a true reflection of the Colors Of Friendship, I don't know what is!

But, especially the staff, Ann, CrazedParent, Monkey's Mama, Cowgirl, Sean, Marcus , LizardQueen and CurlyMama -- because with out them, the place wouldn't be what it is! Thank you all -- you ROCK!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Those Aren't Wrinkles, They're Laugh Lines!

Wrapped Emotions button

This week I'm trying something new. Since I have to post everyday in November for NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month), I thought I'd branch out a bit from the norm.

Melody over at Wrapped Emotions created this blog as a means to rediscover "her creative soul and encouraging others to do the same. 'We live in a world where people live without their hearts and don't even miss them.' I want to live with my heart."

Each week Melody puts out an artistic challenge that helps us rediscover our creative soul! I've been reading her blog for several weeks now and love the idea, but this is the first time I've taken part.

The challenge this week was to Re-create Your Face.

The instructions:

Hold your camera at arm's length and shoot a photo of your face.

This is me in Living Color! No make up and all!

Upload the photo to your computer and with whatever photo editing software you are using de-saturate it, convert it to black and white. Lighten the image if necessary, make sure the image isn't too dark. Print a copy.

This is me in Black & White. I like it without the color.

Now take your pencil and trace over it...over and over and over. Every feature, every curve and line...trace over it. This is you.

Okay, so I cheated and added some color.

My first impressions, were "Man I need a highlight and haircut!" LOL! That's why I used the yellow crayon! I also added color to my eyes -- I think they are my best feature -- the window to my soul! Haha! And my lips -- I don't know why -- I guess because I have "full" lips (when I was pregnant with Sam my sister called them my "Angelina Jolie Lips" because they really filled out!)

I don't think I look my age at all. I turned 40 this year. I don't smoke or sit out in the sun and when I do go out, I use sunscreen (years of living in Australia will do that to you). Turning 40 was a bit of a shock for me, but really, I've come to terms with it. It's just a number and I have 2 kids that keep me young!

I like the way I look now. I didn't always (high school especially), and sometimes the bags under my eyes get the better of me, but I think I'm beautiful. My dad told me everyday when I was growing up (and he still does) how beautiful I was (so I would believe it) and now I do. But looks aren't everything. It's what's inside that counts.

As I get older, I become more comfortable with who I am -- that's part of growing up I guess.

This was fun! And if you have time -- go check out Melody's blog and some of the other posts.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

T-shirts are Me!

Josh has been bugging me for a Pokemon t-shirt and I told him I'd get him one "someday" thinking this would work like it used to.

It doesn't.

He's 6 now.

He gets an idea in his head and that's it.

So we've been to "the usual" places -- Target and Wal*Mart -- NO luck. I went to Kohls yesterday hoping they would have one.

They didn't.

But what they did have was long sleeved t-shirts on sale for $3.60. Right then, I knew I could solve this t-shirt crisis with these cheap-as-chips shirts.

I have some iron-on transfer paper at home.

There is a Pokemon website.

I could MAKE MY OWN!!!!

I made two of them for Josh yesterday and he wore one to school today. He got off the bus today all excited because EVERYONE was commenting on his shirt! "It was so cool MOM! Thank you for my new shirt!!!!!"

Now I hope it doesn't come off in the wash.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Extra Love

In the past Josh has never really liked chocolate milk because he says it tastes like "coffee." I really don't know where he got that but so be it. I've never really minded that he doesn't like chocolate milk.

The other day he decided he wanted to have some so we made some. I showed him how and he made it himself. Later, he asked for more so I made him some. This discussion soon followed:

Josh: Mom, I really love chocolate milk now, but only the stuff I make. You know why?

Me: Why?

Josh: Because I make it with extra LOVE!

Me: Well you know Josh, I put love in it too...

Josh: I know Mom, but I but in EXTRA! I have the most Love... look in my hand (holds out hand)... Look Mom, there's over 200 bits of love in my hand!

Me, smiling: That's so sweet Josh! And it's like recycling because you put the love in and then you drink it and get it right back!

Josh: Yes, and then I have more love to give!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Dressing the Turkey

Sam brought home some "Homework" last week.

We had to make a "Family Turkey." He came home with the blank turkey and the brown background and the assignment was to decorate the turkey as a "family" using whatever we had around the house.

Yesterday I took the boys to Michael's to get some stuff we need for Josh's Christmas Pageant costume (he's a bell... more on that another day) and we got some things to decorate the turkey too.

This morning we all took part in decorating the turkey and here is the finished product....

There is glitter on there too, not sure if you can see it or not.
I don't know about you, but I'm pretty impressed with the outcome! I'm sure it will be the best dressed turkey in his class!

Monday, November 5, 2007

So Sweet and Sugary!

Elizabeth from Table for Five AND Mom Reviews AND Mom Cooks too by the way thinks I deserve a sweet treat for solo parenting this weekend.

And Sam's now sick (poor kid) and missed the birthday party we were supposed to go to today. I think the other parents would be happy we missed it -- he was tossing his cookies this morning.

I'd like to pass this on to:

B -- because it was her Anniversary yesterday and I think she could use something sweet.

Christine -- because she blew out her knee AND her daughter fell off a horse this weekend. Thankfully, her daughter will be okay though!

And finally, I'm going to pass this on to my husband, Rich. Because as I've been solo parenting, he's been working long, hard hours with little sleep, few breaks (okay, NO breaks) and very little help. It may have been hard on me, but it's worse for him! And Dude, you need a shower!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Well, There's an Hour I Will Never Get Back!

.... but I'm not entirely sure I want it back!

I went to the grocery store with both the boys this morning -- Rich is STILL working.

We got to the grocery store and made it about 1/4 through when I realized I left my purse at home.

So we had to go back home and get it. This time it was "less" embarrassing -- last time I forgot it, I was already through the check out! Yes, the people at my local Publix know me! At any rate they do now! LOL!

And we get back to the grocery store... I forgot what it's like shopping with two of them.

"Mommy, can we have candy?"

No, sweetie, we have lots at home already.


Josh, we have lots of Halloween candy still.

(said while pouting and stamping feet): "But we don't have THAT kind!"

Suddenly, an idea hits. Okay Josh, we can get 4 pieces of THAT candy but you have to throw away ALL your Halloween Candy!

No deal.

Anyway, things continued along this line for the entire NINETY MINUTES (we had to have an emergency potty stop) I was at the grocery store! By myself or with just Sam, 45 minutes TOPS door-to-door.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

O Solo Mio

Rich has an install today -- new software an upgrade or something.

He was working late last night and got up early today. He'll be working all day and well into the night. It wouldn't surprise me to find him hunched over the computer when we get up tomorrow morning. So even if he is "done" tomorrow, he will be out of commission until Monday... no, he has to work Monday... hmmm NEXT weekend.

With him tied up, I've been left to parent these children all alone! On a weekend! Yikes! And -- the weekend is an hour longer than usual because of the time change... Oh, wait -- it's a 4-day weekend here too because there is no school on Monday and Tuesday.

And poor Rich -- I don't know how long I have on the laptop -- the Internet connection keeps dropping out. I started this post at 1:00 P. M. and it's now 8:30 and I'm just on here to quickly finish up -- in the name of NoBloMoPo!

I took Sam and Josh and his friend Cade to Chuck E. Cheese this morning. Not as bad as it sounds actually! We got there early enough that the birthday parties had not started. By the time we were ready to leave it was getting crowded!

The boys had fun and they were able keep themselves entertained for a bit! Here's a picture of Josh and Cade in "the cage" at CEC. It's blurry because I had to take it with my phone.

Friday, November 2, 2007

My Inner Dialog

Yesterday B over at Random Acts of Motherhood posted about her "Internal Novelist." It's a great post and I found myself nodding and agreeing with what she says about how blogging affects everything you do in your life. Once you start blogging, you can't stop -- even when you're not at your computer actually "blogging" but when you're out and about.

I do this too and thought I'd share my crazy thoughts, just so B doesn't feel alone! After all, it is only day 2 of NaBloPoMo, and I need things to blog about so at the risk of you seeing how shallow I really am, I decided to share.

Everywhere I go, I have an inner dialog that runs through my head -- and more often than not it doesn't stay "inner" but I find I'm talking out loud. To myself.

And I wonder why people stare at me. See, all this time I thought it was my stunning beauty, but really they just think I'm a freak. See, now, that's the beauty of "Blue Tooth" headsets. When you catch yourself talking out loud, to your self, you can just pretend to be on the phone.

Anyway, today I had to go to Target for various items. Sam's been invited to a birthday party on Monday so I needed a present for that. Plus Sam's birthday is in 9 days and I needed stuff for that AND Josh was invited to a birthday party in 2 weeks so I thought I'd just go crazy and get that present too.

As I walk into Target, I am immediately drawn to the Christmas T-shirts in the Ladies "Fashion" department.... And I use the word "Fashion" lightly because this is Target. Oh who am I kidding! I'm a stay at home mom... most of my wardrobe is from Target! Partly because it's cheap, partly because that's the only place I have time to shop. Oh, yes, the Christmas t-shirts... They are cute so I contemplate buying one. But the one I like the best is black and I don't look good in black... and it's short sleeved. Even in Atlanta, not sure that's a good idea. I pull myself together and tear myself away.

I start to make my way down to the toy department, then see the ladies Christmas Pajama sets -- I have a thing for PJ's. I love them and think I should be allowed to wear them all the time where ever I go. Pretty much the same thing goes through my head that went through my head with the t-shirts. I decide that the PJ's can wait and attempt to move along, but....

My eye catches the pajama's in the boys department...

Josh needs new pajamas! He really does. He's grown so much that all his PJ's are way too small for him. I grab 2 new pair and then some socks for the boys because, well, you can never have too many socks for boys. My washer or dryer or something keeps eating them....

Finally! I make it to the toy department and start looking for toys to get the kids. I choose some things, get some DVD's for them... then head over to pick up a new Pokemon GameBoy Game for Josh. Rich's parents gave us some money to buy him something for having such a good report card and they wanted him to have it on Sam's birthday, so I went to look at the GameBoy Games...

Does anyone understand Pokemon and the versions? Fire Red, Sapphire, Leaf Green, Ruby, Diamond and Pearl? I swear it's like a foreign language that only boys ages 6-10 speak. I'm staring at the case completely dumbfounded. The thoughts going through my head are not "family oriented" so I won't share them here...

I find someone to unlock the case and ask him if he knows anything about Pokemon. No such luck. I should have suspected. He's not 7.

I settle on one -- I don't know which one or if it was the wrong one -- who knows! I know I don't want to get him "Diamond & Pearl" because I think he's getting a Nintendo DS for Christmas and we'll get the DS version of that for him.

So, I'm sort of done at Target but then see that the Halloween stuff -- it's all 50% off! I can't believe it! I contemplate stocking up on decorations for next year but decide against it. I do grab some cereal bowls -- I have an orange one at home and the boys fight over it, so I grabbed three more in the other colors they had.

By now I really have to pee (who decided Starbucks at the entry way was a good idea anyway?) so my thoughts are all about getting out as fast as I can. But I still need cards and wrapping paper... I head over to the card aisle, quickly and randomly pick out what I need and go to pay. I'm in such a hurry, I leave half my stuff at the check out! Oops! Not the first time and probably not the last either.

Anyway, from there I headed over to Costco and I'll spare you the thoughts there because that place puts my brain in overdrive! So much to look at!!!!

And, I need to save some more drivel, fodder extremely interesting stuff for tomorrow!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Our Halloween!

Wow! Yesterday was a long day!

We had plans to go over to our friend's house for dinner and then trick-or-treat with them in their neighborhood. And, of course, since we were going over there for dinner and trick-or-treating and that Rich had to work, that meant we'd be leaving around 5:30pm.

As soon as I picked Sam up from school (at noon) he started asking when we were going to Miss Mary's house. I convinced him to eat lunch and take a nap (he slept for 2 hours! Yay) because it was still a ways off. Once Josh got home at 2:30 all the excitement and subsequent tears that follow, began! I knew that from 2:30 until 5:30 when we left was going to be a challenge so I was a bit relieved when a boy that lives down the street came to play with Josh. It got the boys outside and not thinking about "Trick-or-Treat!"

However, about 4:30 when I told the boys to come in because it was time to do homework and start getting ready, things went swiftly downhill.

At one point Josh was crying on the stairs saying "Halloween is RUINED! This is the worst Halloween EVER!!!" Poor kid! He was just so excited!

Finally, it was 5:30 and we were ready to go! We headed over to Mary's house and the boys had a blast playing before dinner. Josh and Mary's oldest Cade really play well together and don't really get to play as much as they used to. They were watching "It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown" and Josh thought it was the funniest thing ever! He kept saying, "I got a rock!"

Then the boys put on their costumes. Meet "Skull Warrior" and the "skeleton."

All dressed up and ready!

The neighborhood Mary lives in had a little Halloween Parade with the kids just before "Trick-or-Treating" started. All the kids gathered at one end of the street and walked down to the other end. It was very cute!

Waiting for the Parade to start

Can't we start Trick or Treating yet?

The Skull Warrior with his Mommy (he didn't like the mask very much so it didn't last too long). He looks just like his father!

Mommy and the Skull Warrior!!!!

Mommy and her little skeleton!

Mom and Sam

I love this one... You know he's thinking, "Can't we just go already!"

Skull Warrior waiting for the Parade to begin

FINALLY! The parade begins!

Costume Parade

We walked from one end of the street, around the corner and up to the entrance to their neighborhood. Then everyone started Trick-or-Treating. And it was pretty cool because we were all there together at the start, it was like the whole neighborhood was doing it together.

While all the other kids were in line across the street, I sent Josh and Sam over to a house where there was "no waiting..."

First House

Sam had the all the women just enthralled! At one point he came back to show Daddy what he got and Daddy asked if he had said, "Thank you!" Sam said, "Oh, I forgot!" and turned around and went back to say thank you and got more candy!

Josh was really excited and FAST! He and Daddy went ahead of Sammy and me. After we hit about 7 houses, Sam looked in his bag and said, "Mommy, do we have enough candy yet?"

And, unfortunately, Rich's work kept calling him so we could only hit a few more houses in this neighborhood, then we headed back to our own neighborhood to finish up while Daddy worked. This worked out well though because I managed to get Sam to bed then Josh and I went up and down our street and got a few of Josh's friends' houses. By then it was nearly 8:00 and he was ready to come home.

We'd left a bowl of candy outside our door while we were out and, surprisingly, it was still over half full! Josh got to pass out a few pieces of candy to some Trick-or-Treaters. We also lit our pumpkin up.

Our Pumpkin

But, at the end of the night, Josh proudly proclaimed that this was the BEST HALLOWEEN EVER! Quite a change from a few short hours ago!

I hope you all had a happy and safe Halloween!

Now, are you ready for Christmas?

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