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Saturday, April 30, 2011

One race down....

The girls and I survived the first race of the weekend! This morning we participated in the Emma Creek Classic 5K in Hesston. This is a race for women and girls only - no boys allowed! :) I'm not sure what the exact total was, but there were well over 1000 runners registered for this year.

The morning started out sunny, but cold and WINDY!! I wasn't sure we were going to be able to tolerate it at first but we had made up our minds that we were doing it so there was no turning back. The start line was a crazy mob, as it was last year, but once the race started everyone spread out and got moving. It's an easy course (after all, it is Kansas - not like we have mountains to run up) and the wind seemed to slow down a bit once we got going. I didn't see my girls once we got to the start line, not that I expected them to wait for slow ol' mom.

I managed to jog more today than I ever have, but I tried not to push myself too much knowing the torture that I'm going to put myself through tomorrow morning. By the time it was done, I was tired, but not overly tired. Now, a few hours later, I feel great!

We are home for a little bit now, getting some things done around the house, and then we are going out for ice cream (frozen yogurt, actually) and then we are going to our friends' house for supper, and then I'm depositing the older 4 kids with their fathers before I spend the night with my youngest at our friends' place. She is giving me a ride to the race tomorrow so that I don't have to worry about parking, so that will be a definite help.

Other than that, I'm trying to mentally prepare myself for tomorrow. I've never done anything like this - 7 miles is the most that I have ever done, so 13.1 seems to be a bit overwhelming to me right now. But, I am committed to doing this. I said I was going to, and I'm going to do it. I might want to have my head examined, but I'm going to do it. Originally my goal was to do it within 3 1/2 hours - at this point, I'm just hoping to finish.

If a 93 year old lady with a walker can finish a 5K, I can finish a half-marathon.

Stayed tuned for an update tomorrow afternoon!!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Fingerprint Friday - Ready to Run!

Fingerprint Friday was started by my friend Beki over at The Rusted Chain - each week we blog about our interpretations of God's fingerprints in everyday life - go check out her blog and follow the links to some other really neat blogs!

Those of you who have been following me probably already know, but for those of you who don't - after years of constant pain I had a total hip replacement in November 2008. Other than my leg coming out a bit longer than it should have, the surgery was flawless and I have never felt better.

Tomorrow morning, my girls and I are participating in a 5K - while some of the women choose to run, it is open to everyone - runners, joggers, and walkers. The girls' school encourages participation and last year was our first year to do it. The girls and I have been looking forward to it for several months.
I am so blessed to be able to do these kinds of things - the fun 5K tomorrow and my attempt at the half-marathon on Sunday - and had I not had the surgery, it would have been impossible. There was a time in my life not so long ago that I couldn't even walk up the steps in my house, and now I am participating in races!

Stay tuned througout the weekend to see if I survive or not...... ;)

(And how do you like the new look?)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Spelling bees, poetry recitals, and gardening....

It's been a busy couple of days, to say the least.

Yesterday morning was my daughter Emily's first spelling bee. She is an excellent student (straight A's all the time) and was selected to be one of the few to compete - an honor in and of itself. Unfortunately, her nerves got the best of her and she misspelled the first word of the first round. She was disappointed, but admitted that she just got scared by all of the people watching her.
She still looked adorable!

This afternoon, Daniel and I went to our friends' house to work on the garden for a couple of hours. He was NOT in the mood to be there (the joys of falling asleep for the last 5 minutes of the ride and then being rudely awakened to get out of the van) but he still managed to get himself filthy dirty by the time I was done.

It was such a beautiful day out....a stark contrast to the horrible weather that has been happening back east.

Then tonight was Jared's first poetry recital. He was awesome!

Add all of that in to the normal chaos of my life - laundry, dishes, cleaning, running kids back and forth to school, getting ready for both a 5K and a half-marathon this weekend....I have so many things to do in the next few days that I'm just hoping that I can maintain some semblance of sanity. But that's doubtful at this point!

A blog post about...well, blogging.

When I started this blog back in January, I really had no intentions of taking it anywhere. It was more for fun than for anything else and I didn't really take it seriously at first.

But then some crazy things started happening in my life. I turned 40 and got divorced on the same day, for starters. Then, my ex-husband passed away very unexpectedly. Those were the two big things - huge things - but there have been lots of little things since then as well. And rather than annoy everyone on facebook with all of my little stuff, I've been blogging about it instead! ;)

I have found blogging to be very therapeutic. It has helped me to work through the big stuff and the little stuff. It has given me a place to vent, to brag, to babble, and even to make some new friends. I've connected with people who have been in some similar situations, and we've been able to talk about things that we have gone through to get each other's perspectives. I have also found some really amazing blogs that I've started following - if you want to check some of them out, look at the list of the blogs that I follow. I have "met" some really neat people by doing this, and I hope to be able to keep doing it.

I've started to make some changes to the blog itself to attract more followers, like adding a facebook page, using Twitter, adding an RSS feed (still can't figure that thing out), and things like that. I've been gaining followers (who would have thought that anyone would be interested?) throughout the process, which has been really cool. I don't know how far this will go, or if it will go anywhere, but I like to do it.

So, there may be some more changes coming soon - I want to change the look around a little bit and tweak the layout some, so if you have any suggestions, please feel free to tell me. I think I've fixed the comments so that anyone can leave one (apparently that was messed up before) or you can tell me on my facebook page or on twitter...whatever works best!

So, for those of you who have read from the beginning and are still around, thank you! For those of you who have just connected with me recently, thank you! Hopefully I won't bore you to tears with my daily (or almost daily) babbling!


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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

If you blog it, he will come...and other random thoughts.

Since I can't seem to put together any coherent thoughts tonight, it's another post of random thoughts. And stuff. Deal with it.

~ A follow-up to the other night's post - I was surprised by a knock at the door just after the 5 year old left for school this morning. I was even more surprised to open it and find his MIA father standing there. He apologized for disappearing and had a list of excuses. Not saying that they were good or bad, true or false. He had his reasons, and we're good. For now.

~ Duct tape is a wonderful thing. Contrary to popular belief (and facebook rumors) I did not use it on my children. Instead, I used it to once again repair Gramma's ottoman, which started puking little dried-up grass-looking stuff all over the living room, because certain little fingers peeled the previous duct tape patches off of it.
(FYI - Gramma passed away in 1994. This is an old ottoman.)

~ I did my 7 miles this morning. Yay me. (Mental note: restock ibuprofen supply before weekend.)

~ I thought I would shake things up and do my 7-mile route in reverse just to shake things up. Not that I walked it backwards, but I went the opposite direction. It shook things up for sure - since I took a wrong turn (hey, those housing developments all look the same!) and wasn't sure that I was going to make it back to pick up the boys on time.

~ A watched bank account does not grow. Especially when the deposit isn't supposed to go in until tomorrow. Really. Checking it before midnight (or whatever time automatic deposits go in) does nothing but cause irritability.

~ I still love my new van. She does still need to be named though.

~ Watching "Jay Walking" on Leno scares me. No, it terrifies me. I can't believe the absolute stupidity of people wandering the streets in this country.

~ You know that you are truly a mom when the most exciting things on your calendar for the week are your 4th grader's spelling bee and your 1st grader's poetry recital. I'm not complaining - I'm enjoying the lack of drama.

~ Almost forgot that I have a 5K that I'm doing Saturday morning. But it's not a real race - people do run it, but I'm totally walking it. Probably with a stroller.

~ Even the most angelic child will sometimes haul off and punch the daylights out of an older sibling when he has had enough of the older one's attitude. And no matter how hard I try, I will always turn around and laugh before I attempt to discipline him.

~ Kansas weather sucks. Just had to throw that one in there.

~ I really hope that I can pull off this road trip this summer. The more I think about it and the more plans I make, the more excited I get for it!

~ And now, I have a million more things to do....and do them I must. Someday, the Laundry Fairy and the Dish Genie will actually show up and do their jobs so that I can truly relax.


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5 days and counting....Really?


The half-marathon is in 5 days. F-I-V-E days.

What have I gotten myself into? Can I really do this?

Yep, I am officially in panic mode. Completely and totally.

I haven't done crap to prepare for the last week or more, partially because I was sick, partially because the weather has sucked, and partially because....well, I don't know.

I know I can do 7 miles. I do 7 miles all the time. But I have to be able to do 13.1 miles. I've never done 13.1 miles before. Never.

Everything is in place.

I have stuff with the kids situated. The older 3 are going to their father's house Saturday night. The 5 year old is *supposed* to go with his father Saturday night (yeah, right). The 3 year old (and most likely the 5 year old) will be spending the night with some friends and then in the morning, I will leave the kid(s) there while I go and torture myself for 13.1 miles. After the race, I'm going back to their house, where I will promptly crawl out their back door, across the deck, and into the hot tub where I will remain until all that is left of me is a wrinkled up blob of skin.

But I got a new outfit so that I don't look like a dork crawling across the finish line in a nasty tshirt and cutoff sweatpants. At least I'll be color coordinated when they put me in the body bag.

Can I really do this?


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Sunday, April 24, 2011


You know who you are.

You are the one who told me once upon a time that you would never walk away from your child. The one who told me that your world revolved around him,and that you would kill anyone who stood between you and him.

Well, guess what? His world used to revolve around you. He used to ask me every single day when you were going to come and get him, because you did at least once a week and he got used to it. Sometimes you'd even show up unannounced just to take him out to lunch before you went to work. You would take him for the weekend almost every weekend.

I don't know what has happened. Over the last year or so, you've drifted away from him. I know that you're going through your own issues with your divorce. I know that you have to work more hours to make ends meet. I understand that. I've always been thankful that we haven't had to have a custody arrangement set down on paper, and that we've always worked with each other so that you could see him as much as possible. I've always worked with you if you wanted to do something special with him that didn't necessarily fit into my schedule. Very rarely have I told you that you had to take him on a certain day because I had something to do, but you've almost always done that for me when I've asked.

So what am I supposed to think when it's been more than 4 weeks since we've seen or heard from you? You dropped him off here, said "see ya' later" and left, and that's it. No phone calls, no visits, not even a text to see how he's doing. Nothing.

You missed his parent/teacher conference at preschool. You missed the glow on both his and his teacher's faces when she told me how well he is doing there. You missed seeing his art projects up on the walls in the classroom, and he didn't get to show you his desk and his chair and his locker.

Today was Easter. Did you see him? No. Did you call him? No. Did you stop by and give him some silly little Easter gift that would have made his day? No. Guess what? He went on three Easter egg hunts, and he had a blast at all of them. But you wouldn't know, because you weren't there.

It's been almost a month since he's seen you. Almost a month since you've told him that you love him, since you've tucked him into bed, or since you've seen his smiling face. He might only be 5, but he is smart - and he knows that you haven't been around to see him. He hasn't said much about it though, which absolutely breaks my heart. I caught him looking out the window the other day and when I asked him what he was looking for, he said to me "I was just looking to see if Daddy was coming to get me yet" and then he went back to playing. I don't even know what to tell him at this point. I don't know where you are. I assume that you're still working right here in town, less than a mile from our house, but I don't know that for sure because I haven't heard from you.

Granted, I haven't called you either. But you know what? It's not my job. I shouldn't have to track you down to make you be the father that you promised that you would be to him. I shouldn't have to remind you that he misses you and wants to see you. I shouldn't have to remind you how important it is that he has his father in his life. These are things that you should know, and that you shouldn't be taking for granted.

Look at his little brother, whose father didn't have his priorities straight - and now his father is gone forever.

Don't take parenthood for granted. It is the most beautiful, most important, most meaningful gift that a person can ever receive - and you are turning your back on it for reasons unknown to me or to our son. I don't care how many hours you have to work - you can spare 5 minutes to stop by and say hi to him and let him know that you still care about him. You can give up a night of partying and enjoying your newfound singleness again in order to spend a night watching silly movies and eating popcorn with one of the most amazing little boys on the planet. You can spend the 15 minutes that it takes you to drive to work and call him and talk to him - even that is better than what you've been giving him for the past month.

Do something. Man up. Be the father that you swore that you were going to be.

Don't walk away from him. He doesn't deserve that.


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Saturday, April 23, 2011

The past is trying to poke its way into the present...

...and I'm not ready to let it.

Remember back when I was in that weird place?? My ex passed away almost 3 months ago. Hard to believe that it's been that long already, but it has. Anyway, the day after he died was when his sister-in-law called me and informed me that his family wanted to have a "relationship" with my son.

In about 2 weeks, it'll be exactly 2 years since I kicked him out of our home. As of today, someone from his family has made exactly the 5th attempt at contact - a generic Easter card. He has received exactly 2 birthday cards and 2 Christmas cards, and now an Easter card. Five cards in 2 years.

No phone calls.

No letters.

No visits.

Not even an email.

Wow. Talk about a relationship. The relationship-iness of it is overwhelming.

On the flip side, I haven't contacted them either. But I'm a big girl - I don't need them in my life. My son wasn't even 2 years old when I kicked his father out - did his father's family ever check on him to make sure that he was ok? Nope. Did they ever call to make sure that he didn't need anything, since his father wasn't providing anything - including the court-ordered child support? Nope. Did they ever bother to do anything to even remotely indicate that they thought of him as a part of their family? Nope.

The decent human being part of me says to put the card away, say a little prayer of thanks that he got anything, and let it go.

The really good part of me says that I should make contact with them and establish a relationship with them.

The pissed off mother part of me says to rip the card up and mail it back to her, with a pleasant reminder that my last name is no longer the same as my ex-husband's, thankyouverymuch, and that it hasn't been for well over 3 months now, not that she would know that since she obviously doesn't recognize my son as a part of the family unless it's an appropriate time to send him a mass-produced greeting card.

So for right now, the decent human being part of me is going to lock the really good part of me and the pissed off mother part of me in a closet, and I'm going to go on with my life, pretending that they don't exist.

So there.


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Friday, April 22, 2011

I refuse to bubble-wrap my kids.

I came across this article the other day - I don't even remember where I saw it, but it really irritated me...Go read this and then come back here, will you?
Can Banning Red Rover Really Help Kids? New York State Weighs Summer-Camp Safety

I grew up in a time where parents didn't feel the need to put us kids into a protective bubble. We played outside in the dirt, climbed trees, made up full-contact games in our backyards, rode horses, and the like. We didn't drink out of a garden hose - we drank out of the stream running down the side of the mountain, for crying out loud! We spent road trips sprawled across the backseat of the car, wore no protective gear when we rode our bikes, and built 5-foot high ramps out of snow so that we could go airborne on our sleds in the winter.

Granted, some of today's safety measures are important, and I don't have a problem with them. Carseats are important. Wearing a helmet when riding a bike - yeah, I can agree with that one too.

But banning games like Red Rover? Come on, people! Get a grip! Really? When I started reading that article, I could feel my blood pressure rising - thankfully by the time I was done, I was a bit calmer when I realized that the impending ban on such games was dismissed. But still - who in their right minds in this day and age would think of banning outdoor games?

Face it folks, a lot of kids these days are lazy. They are more content to stay inside playing video games or surfing the 'net than they are to go outside and PLAY!! With childhood obesity on the rise, kids need to be encouraged to get outside and RUN! And JUMP! And PLAY!!! Get them off of their rear ends and get them moving! Save the video games and computer time for when it's raining out, or when they're home sick and need rest.

I will admit that I'm not the best at getting my kids outside. While we have no video games (other than a $20 deal that plugs into the TV with some of the *cough* "classic" games like Ms. Pac-Man and Pole Position on it) and I generally do not allow them to use the computer, my kids are addicted to DVDs. We don't have cable, so with only the major networks to choose from, they have become dependent on DVDs to keep themselves amused. They have gotten to the point that if one of them has to use the restroom mid-movie, they all agree to pause it until that one comes back - and these are all movies that they've seen dozens of times!

I know that part of the problem in our family is that it is so hard for me to get anything done - being a single parent means that I get to do all of the household chores, and if I'm outside playing with the kids, guess what? The chores aren't getting done. I already sleep less than I should but with the hecticness (is that a word?) that is our life, I have no choice. Most of the time, the only time that I can get things done (and not have them immediately undone) is when they're asleep. So I'm generally up until 2am doing laundry and dishes and straightening things up around the house. And it sucks.

But I have realized over the past week or so that my kids do watch entirely too much television - and they do NOT get outside enough. So, I have been making a conscious effort to get them outside more. And while they're out there, I work on cleaning up the outside of the house. Even today, feeling as crappy as I did, I took them to the store, got some Lunchables (a sick mother's best friend), went to the park, had a picnic, they played for a while, and then we went to an Easter egg hunt. Luckily my butt could be planted on a bench for 90% of that.

While we were at the park, I took a few pictures - this one has got to be one of my favorites....
Not only do I not bubble-wrap my kids to protect them from every tiny little thing that might go wrong, I take pictures of them doing stuff that makes other parents' skin crawl!


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Fingerprint Friday - Happy Kids and Easter Eggs

Fingerprint Friday was started by my friend Beki over at The Rusted Chain - go check out her blog and see other Fingerprint Friday posts submitted by other bloggers. Each Friday we blog with our interpretation of God's fingerprints - and it is so neat to see what everyone has to say!

I haven't been feeling well the past couple of days. My oldest had the flu, and I think she shared the wealth. After the younger kids went to bed last night, I laid down on my trusty futon and I could hear the oldest puttering around in the kitchen. Lo and behold, she cleaned the kitchen. Like, really cleaned it. It looked fabulous this morning. Then I found a note instructing me to look at the whiteboard in the kitchen when I got up this morning. When I did, this is what I found:

And she did make breakfast - cheesey scrambled eggs, which were delicious!

After we got breakfast done, we started on the eggs....

5 kids, 36 eggs, and 1 sickly momma - but we got them done with little to no drama. If that isn't a miracle from above, I don't know what is!


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Thursday, April 21, 2011


Seen on the way to the kids' schools this morning....

Does this remind anyone else of the Roadrunner cartoons?

I had a totally different idea for a post tonight, but it would seem that I am doing battle with the flu for the second time in a matter of months. So I'm going to save the profound thoughts for when I can actually put them together coherently...and I am going to go to bed early. Thankfully we don't have to get up early tomorrow - maybe the kids will let me sleep until 7:00. Woohoo.

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Insanity is brewing....

Two years ago, the kids and I made a cross-country trek to Pennsylvania and back to visit family and friends. I haven't been back home since then, and I've been itching to go. So now that we have new wheels, I am seriously considering another trek.

The 2009 trip crossed 7 states and was a total of 2941 miles from start to finish over a period of 11 or 12 days. It was an amazing trip, and we had so much fun! Believe it or not, other than one major (videotaped) outburst from the boys, it was peaceful - my kids like to travel! It was so great to be able to get away from everything and just take my kids and go - we didn't have a really tight schedule and didn't *have* to be anywhere by any certain time so we really enjoyed it. We packed lots of food and drinks in the ice chest and basically only stopped for gas and potty breaks, so we made really good time. We got to see some friends that I hadn't seen in *gasp* 20 years and we spent some time with family as well.

I am considering a bigger trip this time - I have been bouncing ideas off of a few friends and figuring and refiguring routes to include things that we want to do. Right now, if we manage to do EVERYTHING, it will be a total of 3708 miles - that's just from stop to stop, not including the running around we'll be doing at each place. One leg of the trip is still extremely tentative and may not happen at all - if we have to skip that portion it will still be 2880 miles.

And get this - if we do it all, we will cross 18 states and Washington, DC! How cool is that? If that leg is skipped, then it will be 12 states plus DC. There will be a couple of long days in there - upwards of 16-17 hours of drive time - but there will also be some days that only include 3-4 hours of driving, so it'll all even out. And as anyone who knows me know - I *love* to drive!

Have caffeine, will travel!!!

So, as plans progress and more details are worked out, I will be making announcements. And with the wonders of modern technology nowadays, we can even blog along the way! ;) ....although I might try to get a laptop before then so that we don't have to do it all via phone.

But for now, I have to put aside the plans and get back to real life. There are dishes that need to be done, laundry that needs to be done (go figure), and I really need to mop the floors (ew).

And in case you missed the announcement from earlier this evening, click here!!!

Quick announcement...

OK, I took a little bit of a plunge and/or leap of faith, and I created a facebook page for Non-Stop Mom. It's very bare right now, but as I figure out the concept of a "page" and how to work it (facebook isn't very forthcoming with easy ways to do things) I'll be adding more to it. I'll post my new blog entries there, so you can either follow here on blogger or there - or both!

Non-Stop Mom on facebook!!!

(OK, and just in case I didn't do that link right, just search for "Non-Stop Mom" and look for my boots!)

Now, back to dinner preparations.....spaghetti, anyone?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Where were you?

I had the opportunity to go to Oklahoma City about a year and a half ago to visit a friend. While I was there, we went into the city and visited the memorial that was built as a result of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah building. I had never been to a memorial like this, and found it to be beautiful, peaceful, sad, inspiring...walking around the area where the building used to stand, seeing the chairs that represented each of the lives lost 16 years ago today - it made me realize how often we take life for granted, and how things can change forever in a split second.

I remember that day vividly - I was living in Delaware at the time, but worked in Elkton, Maryland for W.L. Gore & Associates in one of their labs. We didn't have access to a television, but we had a radio. We couldn't stop what we were doing because of the tests that were being run in the lab, so we had to continue to work while we listened to the reports. The whole thing was so very surreal.

Do you remember where you were?

Outdoor fun and stuff

Yesterday afternoon, the two youngest and I decided to walk to the park, and then we went to the grocery store after that to get a few things - the one really good thing about living in our ghetto-house is that it is really close to just about everything that we need - I think we've walked to the grocery store more than we've driven to it! There's a cute little playground behind it, so I let the boys play for a little while, until the group of older kids that was there got to be a little too obnoxious for my taste.

Watch out! Coming through!


Today there was a breakfast at my daughters' school for the students who made honor roll - I am very proud to say that they both did!!
Me with my beautiful and smart daughters and my youngest son

Later today I went down to my friends' house to work on the garden. I got yellow, white, and green onions, asparagus, and some spinach planted before I had to leave to get home to get the 5 year old off of the bus. Unfortunately I was late getting home because I got stuck in traffic:

Once I got home and the bus driver circled back around to drop him off, we worked on the yard a bit. It desperately needed to be mowed for the first time this season, so I fired up the mower and got started. And let me just say, for the record, dog owners who rent a house and then move out and leave their dog toys in the yard should be hunted down and shot - or at least severely punished. This one stopped the mower dead and led to some very colorful language for a good 10 minutes or so....

But we have some more blooms....can you spot the critter in one of the pictures?

And after all of that fun and excitement, I had just a few towels to wash...in addition to the other 87 loads of laundry that I think I've done today....

Let's see....the youngest one will be out of the house in about 14-15 years. Maybe I can sleep then....

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Our trip to the circus

I just remembered (or was reminded) earlier this evening that I never posted pictures from our circus trip on Friday! So, here are a few highlights (keep in mind that I have a crap point & shoot camera....)

My little clowns!!

Going for a ride - the younger one loved it, the older one, not so much.

Tiger jumping through the ring of fire.

They flew through the air with the greatest of ease....


Crazy mohawked motorcycle rider on one end, scantily clad chick on the other, going in circles at a high rate of speed way high up above the floor. Insanity.

Deep in conversation during intermission.

My kid has never met a stranger - regardless of size.

Focus - something he doesn't do very often.

Getting sleepy....

This was the only act that made me really nervous - he stacked 8 chairs on top of each other and then balanced on them. Yikes.

Playing with the elephants.

Hard to see, but there are two motorcycles going in circles at a high rate of speed inside that cage. And the pink blob at the bottom is a woman standing in the middle of it. Another yikes moment.

Closing ceremony

"Thanks for coming, folks!!"

Super-Duper Saturday

I wanted to post all of this yesterday, but by the end of the day I was so tired that I just couldn't even bring myself to sit down at the computer.

It didn't start out so stellar - I woke up at 4:45am with my face smashed against the wall beside my futon, pinned there by not one, but two small bodies. And one of those bodies decided to wet the bed. Not his bed, mind you - MY futon. So once I finally got up, I had to pull the cover off of the futon (no small feat) to wash it, and then I planned to take the big cushy mattress pad to my friends' house to use their (bigger than mine) washer to wash it.

Suddenly there was a knock at my door. There stood a teenaged boy, obviously amused by my mid-calf length Penn State sweatshirt that I sleep in occasionally. He indicated that he was the grandson of my neighbor, and that he and his father were here to cut down some trees that I had mentioned to my neighbor that I had wanted to get rid of. After some discussion, a quick change of clothes, and relocation of the new van, they got to work. In the meantime, I tossed some banana bread into the oven.

Once they were done (they even removed the trees! woot!) I gave them a loaf of still-hot banana bread as a tiny thank you gift....

This one was having a long-term disagreement with the edge of the garage roof.

Then we took off to our friends' house, late as usual. As I was pulling into their driveway, I realized that I had forgotten their banana bread and the mattress pad. D'oh! The kids went outside and played while I went to the jewelry party that was happening inside, and then later I ran back home to get the stuff that I had forgotten.

One of her friends was there, and she mentioned that she had been spring cleaning and had several bags of her daughter's clothes that she needed to get rid of - our ears immediately perked up, and we ran to her house to go through the clothes. We each came out with a giant bag of clothes (and shoes) for our girls. Bonus!!!

We hung out, the kids stayed outside and played their hearts out, and then we had some burgers and hot dogs for dinner. After we all ate and it got dark, the kids went outside to play flashlight tag while we jumped into the hot tub for a while. Heaven!!

There was a beautiful full moon out and it was just a relaxing evening. For a change, the kids weren't constantly at each others' throats, and there was a minimal amount of bickering and tattling.

Then, the high point of my night. It was late when we left - I'm not even sure what time it was, but it was dark out. As I was driving, I suddenly realized something....


OK, so what's the big deal about dashlights, you ask? I'll tell you - the She-Beast didn't have any. I had to buy a little LED flashlight to keep on the dash so that I could shine it on my dashboard every few minutes to check the oil pressure and my speed. I giggled like a little girl most of the way home at the simple joy of having dashlights.

I might have been a little tired too.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Fingerprint Friday - Brotherly Love

First off, go check out my friend Beki's blog at The Rusted Chain - she has a wonderful blog and makes gorgeous jewelry!

I had the opportunity to take my two youngest to the circus today - a first for both of them. When we got there, we had to go up an escalator to get to the upper level. The younger of the two immediately grabbed onto his big brother for security....and didn't let go until we were back on solid ground!

As much as my kids get on each others' nerves (and occasionally my own) I am often reminded in little ways of the bond between them. Seeing interactions like these make me realize just how much I have been blessed - even though I don't always see it.

More pictures from the circus later.... :)