Wednesday, February 27, 2013

sad face

i'm bummed today.  my little egg/gravy whisk finally bit the dust.  i've used it for years, and the whisk part disconnected from the little egg for the last time.  i've tried various methods to reattach them (they've come apart before), but to no avail.


RIP, little dude.

Monday, February 25, 2013

lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my!

had a super-fun day friday.  no, we didn't mke a side-trip to oz.

i had decided i needed deserved a break from work, and that the mom did, too (we've worked extra hard the last couple weeks), so we scheduled a day off and took the kiddos to the zoo in san antonio.  we hadn't been for over a year, so it was a needed trip.  we somehow managed to fit all three kids, me, my sis, my mom, and TWO strollers into Mom's minivan.  i wish i'd taken a picture of that.  needless to say (but i'm going to anyway), it was a little crowded in there.  but the kids had their movie players going, and JW was fast asleep, and Andie spent the whole drive playing on her phone, so no one really minded much.

the day was nearly perfect.  clear skies, cool, with a breeze.  it was a little chilly when we started out, but turned into great weather.  and there wasn't much of a crowd, since it was a school/work day.  i love that i can take time off from my job to be able to do these kinds of things.  i know a lot of people aren't so lucky.

so this:

is what it looks like when you take 3 kids under the age of 5 to the zoo.  two strollers (as mentioned previously), a diaper bag, and a "food bag" (seriously, have you seen the prices of food at the zoo lately?!).  i love my strollers, and am SUPER glad that we managed to squeeze them both into Mom's van.  i don't think this trip would have been as much fun without both of them.

i won't bore you with a lot of details about things we saw, what we did, etc.  it was the zoo; you can probably guess, and if you can't, you should take a day off and go to the zoo.  you need a break.  trust me.  here's our day in pictures.

so the little man was tired already when we got there

this is my precocious 4 year old telling the rhino to "stop being lazy"

yep, still sleeping (i was playing with my camera settings)

this was as close as i could get them to stand to each other for a picture

"i'm smiling, Mom, take the stupid picture already!"

feeding the lorikeets...this is my FAVORITE part of the zoo! it's also the part that sends my kids frantically in the other direction

yes, that is my son kicking goat poop in the petting zoo, thanks for asking

just playing with my camera settings, again

we're not sure where this guy thought he was going, but he sure was trying

you guessed it, still sound asleep...but isn't he gorgeous?!

again, love, love, love my strollers...thanks, Mom, for fronting us the cashola to get the new sit-n-stand!

by the end, even my big boy was exhausted

so, there's our day.  it was awesome; can't wait to do it again!

oh, and a little PS...


is the greatest invention ever.  like,  seriously.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

laugh a little

just a little humor to start your day off right.  :)  if you don't laugh, it's on you, cause this stuff is funny.


1) you can't count your hair.

2) you can't wash your eyes with soap.

3) you can't breathe through your nose when your tongue is out.

put your tongue back in your mouth, dork.

Ten (10) Things I know about you:

1) you are reading this

2) you are human

3) you can't say the letter "P" without separating your lips

4) you just attempted to do it

6) you are laughing at yourself

7) you have a smile on your face and you skipped number 5

8) you just checked to see if there is a number 5

9) you laugh at this because you are a fun-loving person

10) you've just realized that there are actually only 9 things in this list

Monday, February 18, 2013


i love to organize.  i don't always have time for it, but it makes me oh-so-happy when i do.  and, in case you hadn't noticed, pinterest has a ton of awesome ways to organize, and lots and lots of links to organizational sites.

one i found last year is  the woman that runs this site is awesome.  if you sign up for e-mails, you can get a copy of her organization calendar.  basically, she gives you one clean-up/organizing task per day (except sundays) each week, month by month.  it's such a stress-free thing to only think about one thing each day.  i'm not great at doing it every single day, but i try.

one of the things on the list for last week was to clean out a junk drawer.  i did, and it looks amazing now.  see, it's so organized!

yes, all those scissors need to be there...they have different functions, and i made michael promise to never touch my orange Fiskar scissors...those are NOT everyday scissors, i don't care if it makes sense to anyone but me.

it makes me happy to open this drawer now.  i didn't take a before pic, but you can imagine it.  full of batteries (we have a battery holder in the garage, why weren't they out there?), broken rubber bands, birthday candles (yes, i save all our birthday candles, because some of them can be used again and i'm kind of a cheapskate), drawer pulls (from three years ago when i was trying to decide what hardware to use in the kitchen...and no, i still haven't decided), the list goes on.  it was chaos, now it's not.

i also reorganized our medicine cabinet last year.  this was inspired by a picture i saw on pinterest.

if i had a fancy vinyl machine, i would have made better labels, but i don't, so i didn't

every drawer is labeled, so now the hubs doesn't have to come ask me what medicine he should take based on his symptoms.  and the kids' medicine is separated from the adult medicine, which i really like.  and injuries have their own holder, because that's the most commonly used section of our medicine cabinet, which is both a blessing and a curse.

i have a lot more ideas and projects in store to organize our lives a little better, i just need the time and money to implement them.  baby steps, right?  unless i win the lottery, then i'll take huge, giant adult steps.  but that doesn't seem likely.  so we'll stick to the baby steps, for now.


Sunday, February 17, 2013

something i've learned over the years... that kids can sleep anywhere.  it truly amazes me when i look back at pictures and see all the crazy places my kids have fallen asleep.  i mean, seriously.

she made herself a "bed", rather than sleep in the one she already had

the wait for dinner was just too much for him

she's at the foot of my bed, halfway under JW's cradle

again, out to eat and this one crashes

sometimes eating at home is exhausting, too

to the point that they fall asleep with food still in their mouths

i have no idea how this could be comfortable

my kids are awesome car sleepers

and sometimes it's not just the kiddos who fall asleep in strange places...michael doesn't read my blog, so don't tell him i posted this picture :)

Friday, February 15, 2013


this week seems to have taken forever to end.  i don't know why it seemed longer than usual.  maybe i'm still adjusting to Michael's new schedule.  he now alternates between a one day weekend, and a three day weekend, so last saturday he worked and i was home alone all day with three kids.  or it could be because the week started off pretty crappy ~ i got Eleanor's midterm report card, and apparently she's brilliant but won't listen (which, of course, i already knew), and then found out that my dad was a turd to my mom (they're divorced, but have still been communicating on a regular basis).  and then there's the fact that i've worked my tail off this week trying to get new isometric drawings to the customer (that's part of my job, it's not very exciting if you're not into electrical engineering or autocad).

i don't know; but i do know that i'm tired exhausted completely freakin' wiped out today.  and i don't get a break this weekend, because JW's baptism is tomorrow, and we have an appointment on sunday to get the kids' picture taken.

all i really want to do is go home, curl up on the couch, and read a book for hours until i finish it.  i'm currently reading Last Sacrifice, by Richelle Mead.  my "adopted" sister Sandy gave me the six books in the Vampire Academy series for Christmas, and i've read the first five already and am just about halfway through with the last one.  they're good, and i've enjoyed reading them.

i'll be sad when i finish the sixth book, but there's a spinoff series with three books in it so far, so i'll have something to ease the pain.  at least for as long as it takes me to read those three books.  which shouldn't take very long, except that the place i read most often is the bathroom. 

don't judge me; it's the only place i can sit for a few minutes where the kids won't bother me.  okay, so they will bother me if they know i'm in there, which is why i sneak off to the back bathroom when they're not paying attention.  it doesn't last long, but i can usually get a few pages read that way.


in case you can't tell, or just don't know me, i'm a HUGE reader.  i love, love, love to read.  my tastes have varied over the years, and i've kind of migrated from lighter fantasy (think Piers Anthony or Anne McCaffrey) to what was then called urban fantasy, which they know call either horror or paranormal romance.  i HATE having to go to a section called paranormal romance to get my new books.  they're NOT romance novels, and should NOT be in the same area of the bookstore.  these books are about vampires and werewolves and witches and fae, with adventures and danger and sometimes a little love thrown in, not some sex-filled sexcapade story with a half-naked couple dangling on each other on the cover.  grrrrr.

some of my current favs are Patricia Briggs (her Mercy Thompson series is awesome! so is the spinoff Alpha and Omega series), Jocelynn Drake (her Dark Days series is a little heavier fare), Kelley Armstrong (i have read every one of her Otherworld books, and highly recommend them), and Kim Harrison (Rachel Morgan is one of my favorite fantasy heroines).  i also enjoyed Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments series, which isn't entirely finished yet.

my biggest problem is that i prefer series books, as opposed to one-off stories.  so i find a series i like, read everything that's been published so far, and then have to WAIT PATIENTLY for the next book to come out.  i don't wait patiently.  so i look around for another series to read.  then i'm half-way through that new series, and a new book comes out in the series i already read, so i have to stop mid-series and read the new book, then come back to the second series.  then i finish that series and have to move on to a new series while i wait for new books to come out in the first and second series.  which inevitably happens when i'm about half-way through series #3.  it's a vicious cycle.  and it causes my book shelves to look like this:

please ignore my dusty shelves!  we can't keep the dust out, no matter what we try...and yes, we have tried dusting, thanks for being a smart-ass
This is Michael, I rarely dust and you have never dusted since we met.

sorry about the picture quality.  my cell phone camera couldn't decide what it was going to focus on.  and this is just the top half of the book shelf.  the bottom half is equally full, but has even more random crap sitting in front of the books.  and don't worry, that's a black-powder pistol on the shelf, so it isn't loaded or usable in its current condition. 

and yes, those books on the top three rows are double-layered.  i don't have room for another book shelf at the moment, and i don't get rid of books.  like, ever.  i can give away or throw away clothes, shoes, toys, children (just kidding), but never, ever books.  once a book enters my house, it's mine forever.  and i've read most of the books on my shelf at least a second time.

luckily, my love of books seems to have been passed on to my children.  one of their number one requests is that we read them books, which the hubs and i are trying to agree to more often.  here's daddy reading Alice and Wonderland to Eleanor (this is her current favorite).

Me again. Look how romantic I am. I am wearing a shirt from the place we worked when we met.
i won't show you the kids' bookshelves, because they're currently a disaster.  i have a plan for better organization, and if i pull it off, i'll show you.  but not until then, because it's a little embarassing.  okay, it's a lot embarassing, especially for someone who's as careful with their books as i am.

hopefully i'll have something to show you soon in that department, but until then...


Thursday, February 14, 2013

love and sacrifice

happy valentine's day!  eleanor is super excited, because we made valentines for her classmates, and she finally got to take them to school today.  i found this awesome printable

~ ~

on pinterest (where else, right?), and eleanor decided she wanted to do pink ones for the girls, and blue for the boys.

and amazingly enough, i actually got started on these on monday night (!), so we weren't rushing to finish them last night.  i am sooooo a last-minute-hurry-and-get-it-done kind of person, so i'm really proud of myself for starting a project like this ahead of time.  excuse me while i pat myself on the back for a moment.

okay, done.

apparently, though, i'm not "fast enough", so even though i did all the legwork and got all the materials and started the project, daddy gets to finish it up because he doesn't take as long as i do.  while i think that's highly unfair, it's not like i can argue that point with a 4 year old. 

so here's daddy on wednesday night putting the butterflies together:

brother got to help, too!

the finished product!

aren't they adorable?!

the most important part is that eleanor is happy, and she actually got to help make them (she put all the stickers on herself).

speaking of making children happy (how's that for a segway, eh?)...

lent started yesterday, and of course i hadn't decided what to give up yet, so i had to think about it all day.  i finally decided on something last night when i was driving home from work.  i actually sort of stole this from another blog, but i can't remember where i read it (if it was your blog and you're reading this, please let me know so i can give credit where credit is due!).

i'm giving up being a "no-mom" for lent.  i've realized that i tell my older kids "no" way too often.  they ask me to come play with them, or see something they've created, or read a book, and i say "no".  i have a million excuses, most of which center around the fact that after a full day at work, i'm tired and just want to be lazy for a few minutes.  but that isn't exactly fair to the kiddos, you know.

so for the next 39 days, i'm going to be a "yes-mom".  when they want to show me something, i'm going to say "okay", and go see it.  when eleanor brings me a book she wants me to read, i'm going to say "sure, honey", and read it.  when victor wants me to follow him to the back for no real reason, i'm going to say "absolutely, buddy", and let him pull me around the house.

*there are, of course, exceptions.  if i'm in the middle of cooking something i can't walk away from, i'll have to ask for a temporary delay; and if they're asking for something we can't actually do (like go to the park at 8 o'clock at night), i'll have to say no.*  but you get the idea.  "yes-mom", i am.


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

she lives!

ok, so i've been inspired.  i haven't touched this blog in a year, mostly because i overwhelmed myself with ideas and schedules and things i wanted to include here, and gave up to get away from stressing over something that hadn't even happened yet.  i have been known to bite off more than i can chew on occasion. bleh.

it's a virgo thing.

but i've recently started reading two blogs that i've fallen in love with, and the ladies that write them have inspired me to rejoin the blogosphere.  not for everyone else, but for me.  this will be something i can look back on years down the road and remember what was going on in my life at the time.  and with a memory like mine, i'll need it.

*in case you're interested, those two blogs are Tidbits from the Tremaynes and Domestic Imperfectioni highly recommend them both.

so i don't know exactly what i'll share here, and i'm not going to try to schedule when i'm going to blog (!).  i'm just going to do it when it feels right.  and, more importantly, when i have time.  i'm back to work after my maternity leave with JW, so i'm now juggling a full-time job and three kids at home.

and in every spare moment, we're working on renovations around the house.  here's just a sample.

this is the master bathroom re-no we've been working on for about a year and a half now.  it's still not done, but getting closer a little at a time.

 that's new trim we just put in this weekend - it's getting done, Mom, i promise!

here's the giant shop my dad just built for us in the backyard (yes, my dad is cooler than yours, but we did pay for all the materials ourselves).  we're partially through relocating all the crap from the garage out here.

does it look huge here?  it looks huge in the yard.  like ridiculously huge.

this is where my new pantry is going.  this is another baby step project.  eventually this part of the garage will be walled up and a doorway added between it and the laundry room, and every wall will be lined with shelves.  it's going to be awesome.  it's just taking  i hate being frugal.  :(

those bottles on the floor are our emergency water supply, just in case

and here's the real reason i never have any "mommy" time anymore.  i can get this:

or i can get this:

but never at the same time.

and on top of the renovations to the house (plus the continuously expanding "to do" list), i'm trying to squeeze in smaller projects, mostly things i've seen on pinterest.  *that site is absolutely addicting.  seriously, it's crack for the suburbanite.  i have wasted spent more time on that site than pretty much anything else, except when i used to work from home and played on facebook all day.*

this is the awesome stuffed animal zoo the hubs helped me build:

and here's what it looked like 5 minutes after installation:

yes, that's my 2 year old climbing around with the stuffed animals.  he told me he was going to sleep in there.  he hasn't yet, but i'm certain one day i'll be looking for him, and find him curled up and napping under a pile of toys.

anyway, that's what i've got for today.  here are a few pics, just because i can.  :)

this is Eleanor in the beautiful flowergirl dress my mom made for her

in case you're wondering, this is what being pregnant with a 9 lb baby looks like - this was taken 8 days before JW was born

my children all think they're mountain goats

Victor, being "bat-hulk"

JW, pondering life on the outside

and of course, the only picture i have so far of everyone being nice to each other