Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

"Biker Chick" Grandma!

Monday, October 29, 2007


I haven't posted in the longest time! Spent my free time surfing everyone else's lives instead. Click on the link to "Meesh" to see how creative my sister and husband are and why I always look forward to seeing what they're going to be for Halloween. (By the way Michelle, when you have brown hair we really look a lot alike!)

So here is a catch-up of the many things I've been thinking about and doing over the last couple of weeks:

I found this cut-up 6-pak plastic can holder in the recycling and marvelled how wonderful it is to have a 12-year-old back up! Because when I don't have the motivation to take the time to cut up the plastic thingy to save the birds and I simply chuck it, I have a daughter who notices my carelessness, retrieves the plastic thingy and cuts it up on her own, thereby doing her part to save our environment!

"Bookwise Conference"

I attended a conference downtown discussing writing and publishing. It was interesting, very motivating and so fun to spend time with my sister-in-law who invited me.

In addition, I ran into a friend from Chicago! It was so fun to get caught up and hear about friends I hadn't seen in 10 years. I had actually read her blog recently when I found a link to it on another friend's blog!

So at the Bookwise conference, Marc Brown was going to speak. I had to leave early to take Christopher to a piano rehearsal which was also downtown. As we left the rehearsal, I knew we may be able to catch the last few minutes of Marc Brown speaking. However this entailed a $12 parking fee and a VERY long walk through the entire conference center to get to the other side. As I passed the center, there were a ton of parking meters available.

I had a choice -- get home in time for dinner with Dan and family and enjoy being home, or park and walk a long way with the slight possibility of maybe hearing him speak and having my son get to meet Marc Brown. In a moment of, "What would Mom do?" I pulled over and parked and we walked VERY quickly to try and catch his speech.

We made it to hear quite a bit of his talk and him read a new book he illustrated and talk about another he co-wrote with Rosemary Wells. He was darling!! We also got to meet him right after at his book signing. We LOVE Arthur in our family and I wanted to spend 10 minutes telling him all about how all the kids of all ages watch Arthur, but refrained since the 100 people behind me would have been really mad. But, Marc Brown was wonderful and sooo kind!! AWESOME!

I will also mention that Christopher had a sprained foot so by the end he could no longer walk. I carried him piggy-back to our car and in my intention to take a short cut took a very long cut and walked about a mile around the whole dang conference center with a kid on my back. But I was kind of giddy and still thinking of my own mom and how she inspires us to take "risks" so I was happy to do it.

(Yes, I know, it's funny to hear me call "perhaps missing Marc Brown and then not getting home with enough time to enjoy being home" a "risk" but I'm kind of a like a horse...when home is in sight and I'm tired it's hard to redirect my course!

"Pumpkin Carving"
I used to dread pumpkin carving because it feels like it takes forever and I hate gutting the dang thing times as many kids who also hate gutting it. That was until 4 years ago when I timed how long pumpkin carving takes so I would know what to expect in future years and therefore not dread it so much anymore. It takes one hour. So now I love it because one hour isn't that long after all. And all my kids can gut their own pumpkins (or, as in Marty's case, pay a little brother to gut his pumpkin for him... yes, this truly did happen this year). And once the pumpkins are gutted I enjoy carving.

I did not enjoy watching Nicholas stab his pumpkin with a small "pumpkin carving knife" raised high above his head and plunging it into the pumpkin over and over. It frightened me a bit.

"Christmas Photos"
Finally, if you're having a hard time getting your six-year-old to smile naturally during Christmas photos, try saying "diarrhea!!" And then singing verses of that wonderful song. What's curious to me is that Marty and Nicholas weren't phased. Click on the photo for a larger version!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Fun With Bekah!

Everyone needs to hop on their blogs and create some more posts -- Bekah and I have just spent 30 minutes blog-stalking at 11:00 at night for some sort of entertainment and couldn't find anything new. The sad part was that I'd even read all of Bekah's friends' blogs (and there are a ton) a few nights ago for lack of anything better to do. (I know, I really need to start a good book!!!). So, we created our own entertainment... Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

And The Winner Is...

Michelle got it on the first try! The mystery "treat" was peanut butter balls. I recall making them with peanut butter and honey and then rolling them into a ball and refrigerating. This time I made them with almond butter, maple syrup and carob powder. They were super yummy but nobody was interested in eating them but me. Apparently they are much more exciting when you're sugar-starved as we were as children and I am now.

Also, here's what happened with Veggie Pasta Surprise: Marty had to go to football practice and we went straight from dropping him off to Courtney's soccer game. So I had all three boys in the car with me at dinner time. I put "Veggie Pasta Bake" in paper bowls and covered with tin foil. I grabbed three plastic forks and we were off. As we jumped in the car someone said, "We haven't had any dinner and I'm starving!" As nonchalantly as possible I simply said, "I brought dinner with us," and handed it out. What happened after I'm still running over in my mind to understand.

What happened was...nothing. Nobody said a word. They took the foil off and started eating. I chanced furtive glances in the back to see if they were all alive, and they were alive...and they were eating. Was it the cool, "tin foil meal" look? Was it that I didn't beg such as, "Here is your dinner and it's really delicious. I expect everyone to try a bite before complaining!"

I started fantasizing that they really liked it. That cooked in such a pleasing manner Marty suddenly liked sauce. Christopher really has always been such a great eater. I knew he would like it, of course he does.

Then we arrived at football. Marty handed me his bowl, "I'm done, will you take this?" But it wasn't an empty bowl I was holding but a bowl full of vegetables with only the pasta eaten. And each of the other boys had done the same -- picked the pasta from the veggies.

However, Dan, Courtney and I all loved it and had seconds.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


Another Saturday morning and another Nicholas project. He was trying to make pancakes.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

How a Two Year Old Thinks

I let Nick paint and immediately he was drawn to handprints. Figured this out on his own -- but nothing I wouldn't expect from a two-year-old.

I was being so patient and encouraging this creativity, so I rolled up his sleeves so he wouldn't get his shirt dirty. But of course he's two -- so what does he think? Oh Good! More arm to paint!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Big News

I pulled into the parking lot of Fashion Place Mall in Murray where a new building was being completed just outside of Nordstroms. Got out of the car and read the freshly painted sign which read... "The Cheesecake Factory" Yea!!!!! Can't wait for the Corn Cake Tamales and Lettuce Wraps with their dipping sauce. I'm so excited!