Monday, March 24, 2008

Lots of projects

After finally having moderate success with that blasted recycled dress from the summer 2007 Ottobre, I'm fairly certain I can do it again perfectly. I am determined to get this dress right! i'm not sure if it's perseverance or stupidity.

I decided to cut in to that great pink skull fabric. I cut out a Rose dress from the spring 2008 ottobre for Kari and a romper for Lizzy.

I also had just enough fabric left over to create a purse for myself! yeah! it's not often I indulge my craftiness for myself. . . unless I'm scrapbooking. but i haven't scrapped in ages. In fact, I'm going to be purging my scrap closet this week in order to make room for sewing supplies! I'm not completely giving up scrapping...just going minimalist.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Hoppy Easter

The Easter Bunny snuck in during the night and hid all our eggs! Hard cooked inside the house and dozens of candy filled eggs in the yard!

Ben woke up at the butt crack of dawn and scared off the Bunny. I yelled at him to go back to bed and not come out til at least 7 a.m. And, in a haze, I went to check on the bunny's work. In the dark I had no idea if the bunny was tossing eggs in fire ant mounds or not.

Around 7:01 a.m. Ben was heard running up and down the hall getting everyone else up. Alex refused to budge. Smart kid. Stay in bed. Sleep. zzzzz

I managed to get up and the kids ate the breakfast foods the Easter Bunny left in their baskets on the table before tackling the rather lamely hidden eggs in the living room. They made quick work of it. Tho I still managed to miscount and several hours later we came across two more eggs.

Next, the two littlest girls went out in the back to find eggs. By now, Lizzy figured out putting things in her bag was fun. Even more so when she discovered how to open the plastic eggs and found chocolate!

Once those two were done, the older ones had the run of the yard.

Meanwhile, Lizzy was dumping chocolate out on to the ground.

We headed back inside and I realized it wasn't even 8 a.m. and the kids already had a sugar high. *sigh*

The rest of the morning was spent cutting out patterns and cleaning. I actually made it to the grocery store today and after reading Cookie Madness for the day decided to follow Anna's lead and do the cola ham for dinner tomorrow. I only have cherry coke. hopefully it tastes good!

A friend from church popped over and offered to mow the lawn! This was a great blessing as we were going to ask for help with it tomorrow at church. With D still not able to bear weight on his foot, he's not in a position to mow the lawn or chase after the Lizzy while I do it. I'm just glad we got the whole egg hunt out of the way before the forest was cut down. A freshly mowed lawn is counter productive to hiding the eggs really well.

And, in case anyone is wondering why on earth the bunny came on Saturday...

Church is at 9 a.m. My children are squirmy enough in church without adding in sugar. And they are impatient enough there's no way I'd want to sit through church listening to them whine about going home for the egg hunt. Plus, with my kids being the only ones not on a sugar high, it's like the only Sunday of the whole year when my kids aren't the most disruptive hahaha

Of course, there's the whole spiritual side of things. What exactly does the bunny have to do with Jesus? It makes a lot more sense to draw the line between the secular Easter and the Spiritual Easter by having them on two separate days.

Friday, March 21, 2008

To do list

Well, I have a few things left to do today

1. Whip children in to doing chores.
2. Make breakfast for dinner because I am lazy
3. Hard cook 24 eggs
4. Color eggs with kids
5. Put kids to bed
6. Sew 5 easter bags tote bags because I'm totally sick of buying easter baskets year after year
7. Make three tutus and pray I have enough fabric because according to all the tutorials I've read I don't have nearly enough! Maybe I'll just draft my own (ok stop laughing now! I MEAN IT!)
8. Sew a pair of PJ bottoms for Ben
9. Fill 48 plastic eggs with chocolate.
10. Set the alarm for 6 a.m.
11. Fall down in complete exhaustion.

Any guesses on how many of these things I'll actually get done before midnight ROFL

Sad thing is today I've already
1. Fielded several phone calls
2. Missed a call from the NIH about a genetic study we're doing
3. Went to LLL
4. Found out the bank won't cash a check made out to my 11 yo because his name only is on it.
5. Got an order from a customer for a high chair cover and a baby swing cover
6. Picked up scout stuff for Alex at the council office
7. bought more fabric for customer
8. picked up kids from school
9. rubbernecked on a house fire
10. helped with homework
11. blogged

All in all a pretty productive day :)

AND I even managed to do hair and makeup! yay me :D

Thursday, March 20, 2008

it's like crack

The fabric store that is. I seriously should not go in to that place...even for thread. Or zippers. That's what I went in for today. Two zippers, some ribbon and elastic thread.

I came out with one zipper, two cones of maxi-lock, several yards of ribbon, the elastic thread, buttons, and three yards of fabric. I suppose it could have been a lot worse.

But this fabric was just too cute to pass up!

Report card day!

I am so proud of my kids I could practically burst!

Ben made the A/B honor roll. He got a B in reading, which I am going to talk to his teacher about. He is an excellent reader, so i'd like to know what's going on. Ben said it was because he was missing too much reading by going to speech. If this is the case, there's a big problem! Ben has been reading the first Harry Potter book outloud each night. A first grader who's doing that should probably have a solid A in reading.

Leelee had As, Bs and one C in math! This is a huge accomplishment for her. She has really struggled with math since moving to the advanced placement school. A C for her is like an A for any other student.

Most of the students had ample time to catch up on the grade they skipped. When students are admitted in the spring, they are given the curriculum for the year they are skipping so they won't "miss" anything and are expected to study during the summer. But Leelee was admitted in the fall, two weeks in to the school year, in fact, so she completely missed the entire third grade.

The biggest news of all is that Alex made A/B honor roll! This means the ADHD treatment is working! Last quarter he had Cs and Ds. He has made a complete turn around academically and behaviorally in school.

We took the kids to Sonic to celebrate. Happy Hour...half priced drinks. Cinnamon bites and ice cream. Mmmm mmmm good.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Too smart for her own good

I believe Lizzy is too smart for her own good. She figures things out. I can see her brain working the problem.

So far my little destructo girl can:

Open childproof lids on medicines and cleaners
Dump things out
If we move something higher, pulls a chair over to reach it
Raids the pantry
Opens the dishwasher and climbs in to get to the counter
Pulls all the pots and pans out
Helps load/unload the dishwasher
Takes out the trash! (if the mood strikes her, she'll pull the bag out and bring it to the door)
Loves getting dirty.

She ran to the bathroom this morning saying "bath bath!" I was not ready to give her a bath quite yet. So...she reused to let me help feed her yogurt. Usually she'll take 2-3 bites on her own and then wants help. This morning, help completely refused. She was covered in it.

"Did you get all dirty so you can take a bath?"

She looked me square in the eye and smiled, nodded and said "yeah"

Ohhhh what am I gonna do with this girl???

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

New Easter Project

IT's only a few days before Easter and I'm terribly unprepared. I don't have baskets purchased or made. I'm not even sure I want to have another round of plastic baskets taking up space only to get trashed. It seems terribly wasteful.

I do, however, have two yards of bunny fabric. I'm considering making reusable easter bags. The bigger question is with everything else I have to do this week, is this another project I really need to be taking on?

Or even better, do I need to do this project and make basically reusable easter eggs for treats? As cute as they are, where am I going to put them when we're not using them? Are plastic eggs one more year going to kill me (the kids hate throwing them away for some reason)? Which will be cheaper,... which is my bigger concern!

I am trying really hard not to spend even more money on sewing projects. I am actually finishing my projects...but the sheer volume of fabric I have is a bit scary!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Sibling Rivalry at it's finest

We were playing school this afternoon. Kari was writing her name and doing her "math" and Lizzy was being a bit too curious for Kari's liking. Kari got mad, so I decided to redirect by proclaiming it was story time.

Kari brought me a book and so did Lizzy. We read and off they went to get other books.

Kari ran back out in to the living room and I expected Lizzy to be toddling along after her any minute. Instead, Kari says "I don't want to play with Lizzy so I shut her in the bedroom."

I sigh and roll my eyes and go off to rescue my little one. I quickly noted that the only doors shut were the bathroom and my room. "Kari, what room did you put Lizzy in?"

"I locked her in your room!"

At no point did I actually think she actually locked her in the room...until I turned the handle.

I immediately turned to my trusty coat hanger that has opened many bathroom doors. It failed me. I tried a knife. Nope. I worked on it a good TEN MINUTES before I finally called my husband.

"This better be an emergency" he said, since he was still teacher.

Yes this qualified as an emergency. He gave me some tips on how to pop the lock...none of them worked.

The doorbell rang. It was my visiting teachers! They were late, but that's ok. It was now just about time to get the older kids from school!

Off went one of the ladies and a few minutes later, D arrived home to save the day.

He used a stinking credit card to pop the lock! He could have at least suggested that to me :P

Lizzy was probably trapped alone in my bedroom for 30 minutes. She didn't really panic or cry. She did dump out all the bags of things I'd set aside for the goodwill. I'm sure she had a grand old time trying on all the clothes and throwing things out of the trash in my room.

Kari is not sorry. She only appologized because she thought she'd be able to get dessert back. And for Kari, losing dessert is like the end of the world.

I'm sure I'll be laughing at this later and it will a hilarious story to share with the girls when they are older!

Sewing again

D is on a cleaning and organizing kick for some reason. We have several bags of things to take to the goodwill. For my part, I'm going to tackle my stash of I'm going to be sewing like crazy. I really need to get clothes for the girls done.

I'm going to sew up another of the recycled dresses from Ottobre. I have a bunch of scrap fabrics that it will look cute with. Next, I'm going to make a pair of knickers for Leelee. There was a cute pair in the last Ottobre that would be perfect for school. I have some khaki homespun I'm going to use to practice on. It's going to heat up enough around here the homespun might actually be the right weight for school!

It's supposed to be around 80 for the next two days then drops again on Wednesday. Hopefully no one gets sick with all the roller coaster temps.

D also starts physical therapy for his ankle this week, so it will definitely be busy!

Oh and our things breaking streak continued...the microwave went out. I am hoping to pick one up on freecycle. If we end up moving, a microwave is one thing that we can get new when we get wherever we go.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Dinner and a movie

Every Friday night, the family sits down for dinner and a movie. Tonight's menu was Rachael Ray's Mega Meatball Pizza. I changed it up just a bit and served it on pita bread. It's a lot healthier and cheaper than serving on store bought pizza dough. We use pita bread for pizza on most homemade pizza nights.

The movie was Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium. The kids who watched really enjoyed it. I found it to be a cute and not at all obnoxious kids movie. The 11 yo wasn't all that interested in it and the baby was asleep. It was the biggest hit between the 6 yo and 4 yo. Kari kept dancing around saying "It's magic! It's magic!" Ben asked to add it to our rather extensive DVD collection. I'll see if I can pick it up on a previously viewed. It's not like we actually need any more movies! I know at last count we had more than 100 DVDs. I really do need to sit down and make a master list one of these days...

Some good news

DH went for a second opinion on his ankle today. The doctor confirmed that it was *just* a severe sprain. And, the good news, saw that DH's range of motion wasn't that great and put in an order for physical therapy. The other doctor once he realized it wasn't broken, just seemed to write DH off as a big baby and didn't give much further advice.

And, the van is still in the shop. So far we're only up to $300 in damage. But if DH can get back to work by the end of next month, I'm not all that worried about dipping more in to our rainy day money. I'm just looking forward to building that back up so we can start our debt snowball!

Next on the agenda...getting DH's car sold. We had two people ask about it yesterday but no takers. We're not even trying to make money on it. We just want it paid off so we can free up that money to pay off other things! It really doesn't make much sense for us to have two cars anyway. DH only works 2 miles from home AND I pass by his work at the time he's getting off when I pick up Leelee from school.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Happy birthing day!

Eleven years ago today, I met my baby boy for the first time. He came seven weeks early and weighed 4 lbs 3 oz. Now, he's nearly as big as I am!

I can't believe how fast the time has gone.

He's asked for spinach quiche for dinner and a devil's food cake for dessert.

He's bugging me about opening presents. :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Sew much fun!

I've been waiting rather impatiently for two white envelopes arriving from Finland. In those were my first issues of Ottobre, a fantastic sewing publication.

I was more than a bit intimidated when I opened the magazine and saw a veritable maze of crisscrossing lines in various colors that turned out to be the patterns! I'd never used this type of pattern before, but I usually do trace my patterns on to paper because I use multiple sizes.

I chose a very simple dress for my first go and it was one of the easiest dresses I've ever done. Almost as easy as an A-line. The instructions were much better than the "big 4" pattern companies. Ottobre assumes you know how to sew. It's a matter of put these two pieces together and sew the seams. I can't wait to try more of the patterns!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Bored games or Board games?

We are a game family. Love to play them, even the little ones. I'm excited the kids are finally getting older so we can play more complex games together.

Tonight being Family Home Evening, we had the missionaries over and played a game after they left.

It was a very exciting game of Chutes and Ladders. I rescued the kitten from the tree and on the next spin, got a three, so down the slide I went. The girls and I had a very fun time.

I have such great memories going over to my great-grandma's house and playing Hi Ho Cherry-o. I'm not sure what it was about this game that captivated me. I still love the idea of playing it with my kids, but the mom in me wins out and I can't bring myself to buy it because of all the little pieces. Same thing goes for hungry hungry hippos. I just know those marbles are going to be all over the house. We did really well with perfection until we had friends over and their kids got out the game and we never did find all the pieces.

The older kids have discovered one of our favorite games... Crack the Case. In this game, you're given a short scenario and are able to ask yes and no questions to figure out who-dunnit. One of my favorites is a missing person's case involving a woman who has gone missing. The only clues are a pile of clothes and a puddle of water.

We've also had a blast playing Dominoes, our favorite is the chicken foot version.

Hands down, however, our favorite game to play is The Great Dalmuti. Back when we were newlyweds, we found a small group of friends who also enjoyed games. Every Friday and Saturday night, we'd go to one of our homes and play cards, usually Tripoli or Sets and Runs. We played another game and for the life of me I can't remember what it was called, other than Oh Sh**. And a quick google search of Oh Sh** + card games reveals that's what the game is called hahaha.

Anyway, where was I...Oh yeah, I got distracted by looking up all those links. We'd always find something to argue about during the games and someone gave us The Great Dalmuti in the hopes that it was finally a game we couldn't argue about. Well, it didn't work. We still found ways to disagree. But it is an awfully fun game anyway. Highly recommend the game if you can find it.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

The ER loves us

Someone suggested I total the number of times we've been to the ER. Well, I decided to list for the last 12 months.

In the last 12 months we have been:

Kari-cut her foot open--super glue
Alex-stitches in his hand
Kari-cut head open -- super glue
Me-ruptured ovarian cyst
DH-bowel obstruction
Lizzy-cut back of head -- super glue

The first time D hurt his foot, we took him to the urgent care.

So 8 times in 12 months. LOL

Sadly, this isn't even close to our record. Lest anyone think we are negligent parents or something, I do have one child that has only been to the ER twice in his nearly 7 years of life.

The vast majority of the kids' injuries have come when they were supposed to be in bed and decided to do something stupid. Like when the almost 7 yo decided to stick a piece of a toy in his mouth a little too far and cut his uvula. . . blood gushed from his mouth and nose...real fun. Or Kari's head injury when she and Leelee decided to have a late night sword fight and she took a toy right to the forhead and split it open.

I think when you do have a family with five children, the chances for disaster increase dramatically!

Can I get a redo on today?

It's ok, I know you all are going to laugh at this. I know I laughed. If I didn't laugh, I probably would cry.

Leelee went outside this morning because she left her coat in the backyard. She came barreling through the door and knocked Lizzy right over. I picked my crying baby up and noticed she had pulled off her diaper. Took her over and put a diaper back on her and went back in the kitchen to get a recipe. Leelee comes running in saying Lizzy's bleeding.

OMG yes she's bleeding EVERYWHERE.

Experienced mom takes over and remembers head wounds bleed profusely from itty bitty cuts. I get her cleaned up and she has a 3/4 inch cut on the back of her head!

D says we need to take her to the ER because she'll need stitches. He's worried the swelling from the goose egg is just going to tear it open more. I disagree, but whatever, I've been wrong about injuries before, so I go into the bedroom to get Lizzy some clothes.

D walks down the hallway and proclaims, "All right, No more Injur..." THUD ... and then i hear him scream. :eek:

He's lying down in the hallway in tears. His crutch slipped and he came down hard on his know the one that he injured on the trampoline.

Now, there's no doubt we're heading to the ER.

I called my good friend and she met us at the ER and took the older four kids. On the way to the ER Alex starts hyperventilating he's so upset about both Lizzy and D

Anyway, as I'm checking everyone in at the ER (thank goodness it was empty!), the phone rings and it's D's mom! she says "I just had this feeling I needed to call" I swear, when I grow up, I want my mom radar to be that good LOL

They end up putting us in different rooms.

Nurse comes in to give me periodic updates on D. At one point he passes out because of the pain. His orthopedic dr just happens to be at hte hospital doing rounds so he comes down.

Somehow, they still say they can't find the break. The dr says he knows it's broken but the swelling is so bad they can't tell where. They give D morphine for the pain and some phenegrin for the nausea. Of course the phenegrin makes his veins burn and he starts to itch. Lovely...

Meanwhile back in the room with Lizzy, Dr is concerned that Lizzy *really* whacked her head hard and wants a CT scan. At this point, I'm in autopilot. I just want to get over to D. I didn't really think Lizzy needed treatment, but if the drs saw her bloodied up head, they are sort of obligated to treat kind of thing. Lizzy is a trooper for the CT and no cracked skull. But every time she puts her head down, she breaks open her cut. So they superglued her back together.

We get the ok to leave finally and the nurse wheels D to the front while I go get the car. I drive back and the security guard comes out and says they took D back again because he started vomiting and passed out.

It's like 130 and I haven't eaten anything all day, so I go get some BBQ. I knew there was absolutely nothing I could do and Lizzy would be easier to manage with a full stomach. She kept signing "eat" LOL

Get back to D, and they've done a full blood workup and an EKG only to determine he's probably dehydrated and stressed and not reacting well to the morphine (gee ya think??)

So we're home now, thank goodness.

I'm really ready for life to ya know, become normal and disaster free for awhile!

Friday, March 07, 2008


It's freaking MARCH. I live in the SOUTH. I'm supposed to be on my blog complaining that I have to turn the A/C on, not that we have a snow advisory. This is wrong on so many levels.

Odds are it probably won't snow at all, but the fact that it's even being considered is just wrong on so many levels.

Global warming my a$$. LOL

Life seems to happen

Have you ever noticed that things always happen just at the worst possible moment?

Like this morning, five minutes before we are supposed to be walking out the door for school, Alex comes running to me saying he needs jeans. Now, I made sure he had jeans last night, so I knew he didn't need jeans. Well, he did need jeans. He decided to float waffles in his syrup (a whole other issue) and flipped the plate up and down on to the floor. This leaves me frantically looking in the dryer for another pair of jeans. Fridays are the only days they are allowed to wear jeans, so jeans are very important today.

I come out of the laundry room unsuccessful in my search to find Lizzy carrying a plate dripping syrup all over the floor. I grab her and in awesome mom style, tell Alex to find a pair of not so dirty jeans out of his laundry basket. Wash Lizzy's hands and discover that Alex's waffle mess is still on the floor.

Now, I've got to somehow keep Lizzy out of the syrup in the hallway and in the kitchen and get this mess cleaned up!

Thank goodness for disinfecting wipes and big sisters and baby gates.

I was absolutely shocked to make it to the school on time for Leelee to catch the bus to her school.

Now, I have to finish getting ready for the day and I'm missing my good know the one that actually has enough support so the girls don't hang down to my navel and my one pair of jeans that don't fall off my rear are in the dryer still. This is the big drawback to losing weight...none of my clothes fit!


Well, it's finally Friday!So much to do today. Aside from my daily routine, I need to run to the store and get a few things. I really wonder why I can't seem to get everything I need in one trip. I would save a lot of money if I could just remember everything! I even go with a list and something always gets left off the list.

I'm also going to lunch today with my friend Mavis. We're going to Martha's Place. Supposedly it's fabulous. The owner, Martha Hawkins, spoke at my boys' school recently. She is living proof that people can turn their lives around with hard work and determination.

Today is also the last day of school before Spring Break! That means we have just nine weeks left of school. The year has just flown by.

Alex's birthday is next week and he requested a treat for his class. I ran out of time last night and didn't get to the store before dark. I'm not a fan of running to our grocery store at night by myself. He said it would be even better if I made his class cupcakes. I'm glad he goes to a school where homemade treats are still ok! Even better than cupcakes, he said, were my applesauce muffins. He is so sweet, but I'm afraid his classmates may not take as kindly to my healthy applesauce muffins...especially if Alex rats me out that I use the recipe from Deceptively Delicious. I made the applesauce muffins anyway. What kid doesn't need an extra serving of veggies?

Thursday, March 06, 2008

I'm a big dork

I rechecked my numbers for our road trip by using this calculator. I did it before and came up with a number. When gas prices rose, I doubled the cost in my head. Silly me didn't remember that I entered in the round trip miles rather than one way. Here I am thinking it's going to cost $1200 each way, when that's going to be the total cost! So, it looks like this road trip may still happen!

It will be our best case scenario if D gets this job and we can leave from Seattle instead of having to come back here.

I am trying really hard to stay calm while we're in the waiting period before interviews begin. It's working ok most of the time.

The other news from tonight is that after using crutches all day, D's foot is twice as swollen as it was before. I told him he needs to call the doctor tomorrow and maybe they can get him in for the bone scan sooner. The swelling should not be increasing by staying off of it!

ups and downs

This has been a week of ups and downs.

Thankfully, Roto Rooter came to our rescue. And, it wasn't hugely expensive.

DH had another appointment with the orthopedic surgeon. After another examination, the doctor is now convinced DH's ankle is definitely broken. He is still in a tremendous amount of pain and it's not getting better. The swelling is still apparent. The doctor suspects that the swelling is pushing on the bone and hiding the break. He has the soonest appointment available for a bone scan which is a week from Friday! Meanwhile, he's now on prescription pain pills and relented to supporting himself with a crutch. He's so stubborn that he was refusing to use the crutch. Well, hopefully his foot not improving will help him swallow his pride.

The other bit of down news is gas prices. Like everyone else, we're feeling the pinch. Gas prices have risen enough that unless there is a major drop in price, we won't be able to go on our big vacation this summer. This is incredibly discouraging. I really wanted to see my parents. I know they are planning a trip to see us for next summer, but I still miss everyone.

We do however, have a Plan B for vacation. If DH is back on his feet again by the end of May, we're thinking of spending three or four days at Disney World! We're close enough that it's a day's drive. Since we haven't been camping in ages, we plan on camping it at Ft. Wilderness. The other benefit to that is we don't have to get two rooms. With five kids we usually exceed the occupancy limit on hotel rooms. Disney is in a position to actually enforce this, too.

The other good news is I am down another pound! This puts me at 3 lbs from my weight loss goal. Heck at this rate, I may have to adjust it again and see if I can lose another 10 lbs by the end of the year. I may just be living in a fantasy land if I tried to lose 10 more lbs, but I thought it was a fantasy to get to where I am, now, too!

anyhow, here's a little picture progress...

Monday, March 03, 2008

Not much getting done today

When it rains it pours!

Last week, hubby injured his foot in what he is referring to as a "freak trampoline accident." More like daddy showing off for the kids. He is in a boot and in quite a bit of pain. The ortho said there's nothing broken, but he's not getting better. Hopefully, we will get some positive news soon on that front. If he needs surgery he needs it this week because he has all of next week off.

Oldest daughter has a double ear infection.

The check engine light came on in my van.

With all the doctor appointments, I blew through an entire tank of gas in a week! That's as much driving as I usually do in a month. At $3.05 a gallon...ouch. Hopefully the half tank I have now will last me awhile.

To make everything even more peachy, the dishwasher, garbage disposal and washing machine are backing up in to my tub. Major ick. I'm waiting for roto rooter. Hopefully they will get here soon!

I am desperately trying not to stress out about how much this is all costing us. Thankfully, we have savings, but that savings was supposed to go partly to our trip this summer. It feels like things are conspiring against us to keep us from the trip. Maybe, this means hubby will get the job he's trying for and we will be moving and won't be able to go on the trip because of a move. That's best case scenario.

We are also trying to sell hubby's car. It is silly to be spending all this money on a second car when he only works 2 miles from the house...and I drive by his work on the way picking kids up from school at the same time he's leaving work! There really is no need for us to have two cars. Dave Ramsey would be proud of this step.