Sunday, December 30, 2007

Basement galore

Basement walls....check. Basement windows....check. Basement floor....not so much. It should be next.

I have decided on black shutters and cream trim to go along with the green siding.

I am still waiting on the cabinet estimates. I did however get the cabinet layout and it looks great. I will have to change a few things, but overall it looks like it should be really nice. I am worried about the whole microwave over the range deal, tho. I have never been a fan of this space saving idea. I remember that my step-dad had one in his home and it was always dirty and so close to the range. I am concerned that when I get out all my canning equipment that it will be hard to negotiate it around the microwave over head. Does anyone have any suggestions on this? Are there other options out there that I am unaware of?

A big shout out to everyone for the new year. I will be busy trying to stay awake till midnight. I will be busy stuffing my face with lots of great food, like meat balls and taco dip and moon pie....mmmmmmmm

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Here it is!

The beginnings of our brand new home. They began excavation on Tuesday and when we drove by today it looked like they were getting ready to set up some of the basement forms. How cool is that?

We had to go pick out kitchen cabinets today and counter tops. Talk about choices. I have it narrowed down to 2 different cabinet choices and, I think, 2 different counter top choices. What started as flat panels, raised panels, oak(not so much), maple(nice), hickory(I wish), ...then natural, fawn, autumn, june, september, and whatever other color of stain that you can think of....with newly added things like cocoa glazes and pencil trims...I can say that when we left the cabinet place I had it narrowed down to 2. One of which, is my first choice, and it happens to be a custom made cabinet. By the Amish. As she tells me this I say in my head, right, like I could ever afford that. Of course that would be my first choice. Heaven forbid my first choice be something that is actually in my allowance. No, no, I like to make things difficult. So, we sit back and wait for all the numbers to come rolling in. Then sit back and begin the apples and oranges debate.

Here is the siding color. It is actually a warm sage green. The color is really different in this picture. So, I need to choose a shutter color. Should it be black, brick red, sienna brown, or burgundy? Tell it like it is. What's your choice?

Sunday, December 16, 2007


And we are back.

I am so excited to say that we have gotten moved into the rental and placed the kids into their new schools. We have waited the customary 2 weeks to get all of our utilities lined up. We will just get into a routine of proper billing and paying and then it will be time to move again.

No worries. It will all be worth it when we are moved into our new house with all of our green choices. We have closed on our previous house and everything was signed, sealed, and delivered. We have signed on the dotted line for our new home so that they can begin the building process. A perk to living in a small town...things like building permits are potentially approved much quicker. The downside to living in a small town...the person who approves those building permits has his own time line, which in our case, is part time. I can see a squeaky wheel in this guys future!

Upon having our land surveyed and marked for digging, we have also been made aware that our neighbors have built their fence almost 2 feet into our property. Bad you say? Yes, I say. I am not sure how this will play out, but I can see big machinery making a big mess of known fence. One more thing...they have also built a shed right next to that fence that is on our land. Can you guess where I am going with this? The shed may have to move. The fence may have to move. When my husband and I found all this out we looked at each other and said, Welcome to the neighborhood!

Let's see...I am sure that I have tons more to tell you. It seems like I have been gone forever. Make sure you stop by to let me know you are doing well. And to fill me in on what has been happening in your neck of the woods.

First thing on the choices of the new home....I have to choose a siding color. And a shutter color. I have already chosen tan windows for the whole house. My hope is to have you all help me make my choices. I will take some pictures of some of my color choices and then you guys tell me what you think. Are you up for it?

Friday, November 30, 2007

on the move

I feel bad because my posts have been so sporadic lately. I apologize.

We are on the move beginning tomorrow, so I wanted to give you a heads up that it will prolly be next week before I can check in.

I am sure I will have all kinds of good moving stories for you. Something always seems to happen, right?

Till then...take care and keep on writing. I'll miss ya.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A Special shout out

I wanted to throw a special shout out to her and her.

I have always wanted to be adventurous and make a fresh pumpkin pie. I have always wanted to. Then the idea really sinks in and I get cold feet. I think of how much more work it must be. How it is going to take so much time...time that I don't have to spend on a pumpkin. How, if it tastes so dang good, then it must be way too labor intensive for me.

So quickly comes my surprise. After I get a couple step by step tutorials. Just how simple it is. I was so happy. I have just washed and gutted 2 pie pumpkins and they are officially roasting in the oven. I have rinsed off all the seeds(per request of my older son) and they are anxiously awaiting their turn in the oven.

I will then let the pumpkins cool and scoop out all the yummy squash and puree it all up and then store it for my pumpkin pies, but also for later this year when I will be able to have fresh pumpkin muffins or fresh pumpkin waffles.....the list could go on and on.

30 days of thanks

Entry #18

I am thankful for all my fellow bloggers. All the new ideas and everything that you can share. All the supportive words, and cyber hugs. The ongoing relationships that you never thought would happen and then all of a sudden you feel a certain kinship with these people that you have never physically met. Some to the point that you feel like you may have known forever. Some to the point that you feel like you could most certainly pick them out of a crowd! And then even those who it seems you have everything in common with and how could you have gone so long without having them as your friend.

As Thanksgiving draws nearer, I have to say that I am so very thankful for all my new blogging friends.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry # 15

I am so very thankful for my heated mattress pad. I can turn it on while I get the kids ready for bed. I can have it slowly roasting my flannel sheets and fleece blankets. I can have it all nice and cozy at the foot of the bed so that when I get in my toes stay super warm. Even if I have to slide way down in to the bed to reach the foot of the bed. Yes, I am short. My name is Frugal mom and I am short and okay with it.

The best part? I no longer have to sweat my husband out of the bed before he even gets in. My mattress pad has dual controls. I can be toasty warm and he can be cold and comfortable. I can start my bed on high and then turn it down while I sleep. It is a little green. I mean, we turn the heat of the house way down during the night...but I have my cozy mattress pad going.....just a little.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #14

I am thankful for my oldest child. I am thankful for her beautiful smile. When it shows up even during the most trying times. There are times a plenty where we butt heads and expect each other to give and it just doesn't happen. These are the times that she helps me to remember that she is still a child, even tho she so desperately wants to be an adult. An 11 year old going on 30....sometimes in the midst of all the gifts she possesses, I have to remind myself that underneath it all she is still just 11. Still growing up(even tho I don't want her to!) Still trying out new things. Still making mistakes. That last one is the hardest for me to get past. As mature as she is...I think at times I expect her to know what all the right things are. And how to do them. I am thankful that she allows me to make mistakes as well. Because what else can we do, but learn from them.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #13

I am thankful for my littlest one. I especially look forward to that time in the evening where we have bath time and book time. That time where he starts to wind down(finally) and he begins to cozy up and give out handfuls of kisses and hugs. That time that you hold on to for as long as you can because you know once you turn your head for just a split second it is gone and you can't get it back.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The great plastic Challenge

Over here, she has challenged me. I should not say me. Us. All of us. But, I tend to take it personally, so I will be promptly kicking her hiney in this challenge!

This week, along with my reusable grocery bags, I will continue to use my reusable produce bags. These are the greatest things. They are just little cotton bags that you take right to the grocery with you. Instead of using those flimsy little plastic produce bags that you see flying all over the parking lot. The cashiers seem to tolerate them just fine. They do have to look inside the bag instead of just looking thru the plastic, but they seem to manage just fine. They are machine washable and have a great drawstring on the top to close them all cozy like so your veggies stay securely in place.

Try them out. Tell me all about how you love them to death.

A new survey

Anyone out there canning? Have canned?

I am trying to figure out the best ways to store my jars that do not have the original boxes. I am limited on space and would like to figure out a way to have them available, but not all just setting on a shelf out in the open.

Any ideas for me?

30 days of thanks

Entry # 12

Yes, I know. I skipped some. I am thankful that I have good blogging friends that will still like me even tho I had to skip a couple days.

Had the birthday weekend this past weekend for J. #9....9 years old. It does not seem possible.

I am thankful for him. I am thankful that he has given me so much love in the past nine years. I am thankful that he has at times reminded me how to be silly when I had almost forgotten how. I am thankful that he still has that little boy face and those little boy hands that are always dirty. I am thankful that he doesn't give me a hard time when I don't know how to play the video games as well as him and I know sometimes he lets me win.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #8

I am trying to decide if I have anything else to write about besides my thankful post. I guess I have been so consumed with the house stuff that nothing really worth talking about has happened.

We drove thru our soon to be neighborhood this evening. Well, soon in like 5 mos. After we get our new house built. So, for the next 5 mos you guys will be bored to tears helping me pick out flooring, and cabinets, and doorknobs, and fireplace mantels. Doesn't that sound like fun? I know you are just chomping at the bit to help me with all this. Don't worry, no pressure. There will only be a small quiz after its all said and done.

Anyway. I am thankful for fall leaves. Here in this house and the one we will be in soon will have no trees. That means no leaves. I actually have thought about renting leaves. Do you think someone would let me rake up their leaves and take them to my house just for a little bit? And then bring them back. Fall leaves have such a nostalgic smell. One that stays with you forever and ever. One that, when you smell it and inhale really deeply, makes you cough and, no. Makes you think of all the times that you had to break your back as a kid and rake all the leaves just to watch them all blow back to where they were a few minutes before that. Just so you could rake them all up and then run and jump high into the sky and land in them...thinking it was gonna be really soft and cozy, but instead its not. Yeah, that kind of nostalgia.

When I was growing up, we lived right across the street from a huge public swimming pool. In front of the pool was a huge open field. Rolling hills and great big trees. I am sure it would not look nearly as big now that I am an adult. But I want to remember it so big...I would take my Ma's rake over there every fall and rake the leaves in the field. Now to a 7 year was the greatest thing ever. All the leaves I could ever want. All I had to do was rake them into piles and then they were all mine. The joy if it all. To my 14 year old brother...being sent out there with me to play....not nearly as much fun to him!

So, if you wanna rent me some leaves....I am open to that.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #7

I am thankful for chocolate.

Enuf said.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #6

Anyone out there garden? Food or flower? I am thankful that I have a yard that has dirt and a sky that has sunshine.

I love to garden. I love to plant seeds and watch my own food grow. I love to harvest that food and know where it came from and how it was managed. I know it is healthy and free of chemicals and such. I know I am teaching my kids huge things when we garden together and then harvest together and then cook together. That is something that they will have forever in their memory. More so than a toy or a doll or a stuffed animal. A memory. And even more than a memory...a learning of where their food comes from and how to prepare it and eat it healthily. And I hope that when they grow up to have kids of their own they will pass on the teaching.

That can not be bought.

Monday, November 5, 2007

The plastic challenge

Over here, she has issued a challenge. Well, okay, not really in a mean way. More of in a green way!

See what you can do to participate. Even if it is just using less ziploc baggies and more reusable containers. Or getting your juices in concentrate or in glass bottles like she has suggested. Or how 'bout using refillable water bottles instead of all the disposable ones?
These things are the greatest! They eliminate the need to use ziploc baggies in your lunch bag. And the best part....they serve as a clean place mat on the dirty lunchroom table. Who isn't up for less germs on your kids food? Or yours for that matter! I purchased 4 of them quite some time ago and have been totally impressed. They hold up to the kids, the wash, and the usage over and over everyday. They come in all kinds of great patterns and stuff. I happened to go with the earth friendly design as it is not lined with PVC.

The owners are super friendly and go out of their way to help you and answer any questions that you may have. In fact, I ended up placing my order incorrectly and they were ever so eager to make sure that I was taken care of and that I was happy with everything. Total thumbs up!

30 days of thanks

Entry #5

Very simple, this one. I am thankful that somebody needed a new house and I needed to move on from mine at the same time. That's right. The house has been sold!!!!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #4

As many times as I have said that I think cell phones can be somewhat unnerving when they are ringing in the movie or being used in the checkout lane....I am thankful that I have one so that my kids can reach me anytime and so that my husband has an added reason to text me to say that he loves me.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #3

I am thankful for good neighbors. In the world today, neighbors are not like what our folks probably remember. We tend to keep more to ourselves and not check in very much with those close to us. We don't allow our kids as many freedoms as they did then and we for sure don't allow our neighbors to watch out for our kids on a consistent basis or think that they will in case we can't.

I happen to have the greatest neighbors ever. I love them to death and know that I can count on them when I am in a pinch or need a cup of sugar. They are some of my best friends in the world and I am so happy that God placed them next to me. So, in today's world where we are always rushing about and not taking the extra time to smell the neighbor and I both have rose bushes...a fool proof way to make sure that you are always checked in!

Friday, November 2, 2007

30 days of thanks

Entry #2

I am thankful that the area in which I live experiences all 4 seasons. I have a liking to all of them, okay, not really.. I do not like winter. Can I say that I hate winter? Prolly not in a thankful post, huh?

At any rate, when it gets cold, like it is beginning to do now, it makes me so very happy and thankful to think of the warmer months. When it is warmer and so very hot and sweaty makes me thankful that I will see fall soon. Notice I did not say winter. Having to wait for the fall leaves and the first blooms of spring make me so thankful for all the seasons. It makes it well worth the wait when you see the first orange leaf falling from the tree and the first yellow daffodil peeking out of the snow.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

30 days of thanks

I couldn't be happier to have found this great blog activity to participate in.

Over here she has a great blog. She offers up tons of ways to "go green", she has great crafty ideas, has some great kids, and to top it all off she has brought to my attention the 30 days of thanks. Every day in the month of November you are to write one post that talks about something you are thankful for. How hard can that be? I am thankful for tons of things....big and small. If you want to join us, please do. Anyone can participate and if nothing else it makes you take a few minutes each to day to just have some reflection and think about where you are in your life.

So, here is my numero uno.

I am thankful for the fact that my kids love to read. I am so happy that they enjoy picking up a book(without any prompting from us) and just reading. That they find things in books that makes them smile and makes them laugh out loud. Sometimes, in the world of kids today it is a hard thing to get them to just forget all the everyday stuff and become immersed in the idea and the joy of a good book. I am thankful that there are nights when I have to tell them it is time for lights out because they have stayed up way past their bedtime because they got lost in a book. When I look around and see so many kids not choosing the right path, I am happy that one of my issues at home is to tell my kids to put the book away and go to sleep.

Happy Halloween

Here's my gang.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

3rd Annual Pumpkin Carving Party

Here's some pics from our pumpkin party. I have to be honest and say that we actually stole the idea from my great friend, Gnightgirl. She used to have one every year and we would attend. Then our kids got a little older and we felt like the adult party was not the best place for them, so we changed it up a bit, made it more kid friendly and began to host it at our house. It is a blast and everyone has a good time. At least, thats what they tell me!

Make sure you give a shout out to my Ma who did all the great decorations! Next year, you guys have to make sure to come. Oh, and its a potluck. Bring a dish, your own pumpkins to carve, and lots of laughs. The latter being the most important!

This gal, my adopted, or surrogate, or lets just say plain ol' daughter, almost 22 and never carved a pumpkin, so she says. When you are grown, make sure you remember that I did, in fact, teach you something.


This is an update on my bluebird post.

I have still being seeing the little buggers, but have yet to entice them into my new house. I will keep working at it.

Here we have the yummy morsels of goodness that the bird man suggested we set out for the bluebirds. Raisins and meal worms. As you can see, I had to call in reinforcements to add the live, squiggling meal worms to the dish. I was not really liking the idea of having to touch them. Yes, I am a baby. And I will be the first to say that I am not a camper. My idea of camping is hanging out in the hottub at a hotel and and having to go out after the ice.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Looking forward

As many of you know, my grandma passed away earlier this year. That was a very hard time for me. I still miss her dearly, as she was such an integral part of my life.

Grandma loved watching the birds. She always had a feeder outside. Many, actually. She was one of those people that had a different feeder for every type of bird. The finch feeder, the cardinal feeder, the suet boxes...I wonder sometimes if that is where I got my love for the wild bird. Grandma did have a favorite bird tho and it was the bluebird. She had a bluebird house right on her deck. Right next to her house. And wouldn't you know those bluebirds came back year after year and made nests in that house. They raised baby bluebirds and just gave grandma so much joy. She ordered meal worms and placed them in a dish on the deck and the birds would come right out and feed on them. They were the greatest thing to watch. I could sit there for hours and watch them. Which, I think grandma did.

I have yet to become as faithful as grandma. I mean, I have a feeder. I have a few, in fact. I fill them with sunflower seed and watch to see what will fly by.In the area that we live there are few trees. It is a pretty new neighborhood, so trees just aren't big yet. That tends to make for a pretty low bird population. We have been in this house for 5 yrs and have planted our fair share of trees. My weeping willow is my favorite and it has grown by leaps and bounds since we planted it.

Imagine my surprise when just a few days ago I see a bluebird perched on my fence. Never have I seen a bluebird here. Never. Then there are 2 and then 4 I have seen in the last few days. I am filled with happiness. More than just the bird. It makes me feel as tho grandma is here. She is with me right now. This is her way of reminding me that she has never been too far away. It just makes my heart ache for her, but also makes it feel her joy. The joy that she had when she watched the bluebirds and the happiness it gave her.

I set out to learn more about these birds and I have. When I make a decision, I am determined to see it thru till the end. I went to a local shop here in town and purchased a bluebird house even tho the owner thinks I am being a little over zealous. That I will be upset when they don't nest in my house. And even more upset when the sparrows try to take it over. He says that they just don't tend to stay here in this area. He doesn't want me to waste my money on a house. And if it were anything else, I would have been glad that he was looking out for me and not trying to just take my money. But this is more to me than just a birdhouse. So much more.

So, I tell him that I will, in fact, purchase the house and some worms, too. And that when I get these bluebirds to nest in my house I will bring him a picture and he will have to post it in his store. He began to laugh and was very nice and said, you do that. I wish you luck, he says. I will be more than happy to put up the picture so that everyone can see the birds. Don't get me wrong. He was very helpful and informative. I left there feeling very empowered. He gave me some great tips on how to attract them and on what they like to eat.

But, I did remind him that when(not if) I get the birds to stay, that I will be back in his shop to show him. He gave me his card and said to call him day or night if I had any questions. Okay, I will, I say. Thinking to myself, these aren't just any ol' bluebirds. These were sent by grandma. Of course, they are gonna stay.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Take a look

Thanks to my husband we got some fab pics last nite.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

to puff or not to puff

I came across this great blog. I am not even sure anymore how I found it, but I really like it.

I found this recipe on there and thought that it sounded really good. Keep in mind that I have never made a tart before. In a pan or a free standing one. I am always up for new things, especially when they have to do with food. So, at my weekly grocery trip I gathered the ingredients that I didn't already have and headed for home.

Later that night as I am gathering my ingredients, I am beginning to realize that the dough I got is not really looking like it is gonna do a whole lot of puffing. Huh. I keep going, getting everything out. You notice how the first part of the recipe says to roll out the dough to like 1/8" dough is not looking like it is gonna be up for a whole lotta rolling. Huh. So, I say to myself(actually out loud, I do that sometimes) This phyllo dough must not be the same as puff pastry dough. Hence the word PUFF. The little tarts on the front look kinda tarty. I mean, I am making a tart.

Well, I am already into it now, so I must make do. I have already packed my tart pan, so this puppy is gonna be a free stander. I kinda overlap the phyllo sheets and then put all the ingredients in the middle. Then I sorta bring the edges in on themselves and put some egg wash on them to help them stay put as well as to make them brown better.

The verdict? Okay. I would, of course, use puff pastry next time. But also, I would not add the lemon zest. It was way to tangy for us. Or I just had an over ripe lemon. I would use more slices of squash because that is where the sweetness comes in. Although, I am thinking by her descriptive that my tart is much larger than the one she made, so maybe when using the puff pastry it ends up being smaller? Oh, and the recipe says to slice the squash into thin slices...good luck with that. Do you know how hard it is to slice an uncooked squash, much less slice it thinly? Not so much. And the onions, yeah...many more of them, too!

So, in the was tasty, but I have some wiggle room on this one. I will switch up some things next time and see how it goes. Make sure you try it. And let me know how it turns out for you!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

I am done

So, we did it. We got everything done to put the house up on the market. And may I say, it looks darn good. Aside from the fact that I liked my rust colored walls better. Can we all say neutral?

I am officially done. I am done staying up way past my bedtime to paint. I am done staying up late and missing the news so that I can sew curtains. I am done seeing drywall dust and sawdust all over my house. Did I mention I was done?

The carpets are cleaned, the floors are mopped, the stockings are hung on the chimney with care...oh, wait...wrong story. And I don't even have a chimney.

Now, we sit back and wait. Well, not really sit back, I guess. I mean I still have to keep the house spotless, right. I can't let the kids leave their dirty socks all over the house or leave my jammies on the bed. I mean, I even have to make my bed. Do you guys make your bed? I always felt it quite silly to make a bed only to mess it up the same evening. I will say that I like the feel of a made bed. The nice, straight sheets, the fluffed pillow....

So, after a very busy and even more stressful 6 weeks, I have to say that I am so looking forward to my yearly getaway. Every year just us girls take a trip. Just a little road trip to get away and have some me time. I am so looking forward to the me time this year. I have already told my girlfriend that I am just looking forward to being able to eat a dinner and not have someone eating from my plate. She says, well, I guess that means I will have to resist temptation and not try your dinner? Well, okay you can try it. But don't expect me to cut it up for you.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A little overboard

Remember this?

So, maybe I got a few sizes too big...

When I grow up...

I have finally found my dream job, aside from what I do now, of course.

This weekend I had(got) to power wash the deck. Can I just say that I now think I should have one of these things for my purse. So I can carry it with me and spray off my kids when they get in messes. You know, the sand box, the dirt, the ice cream cones in the van!

This task was by far the funnest I have done since we began all these house selling tasks.

Just look....try and tell me that you can't tell the difference.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Smell that?

I wanted to get some yummy air fresheners for the house. One, because I like to smell them, but this time around I mainly want my potential home buyers to think that I have just baked fresh gingerbread!

Who knew there were so many choices? Like most things in my everyday life, I like to see if there is a healthier or safer alternative. I spotted these and out of every thing there they seemed to be the best as far as fewest chemicals go. Then I saw the price tag and was in awe. I mean 8 bucks? For an air freshener? If it were just for my sniffer, I would go the ol' cinnamon sticks in the water and heat on the stove trick. I was, however, not so sure how that would go over with people walking thru the house and looking at every single thing.

The price seemed a little steep to me, but I dove in and began sniffing. Now, I have never smelled a fig. I like to eat them, but when I eat them I never really thought of them as an air freshener type smell. I passed on that one. The lavender one was way too strong. I really enjoyed the apple vanilla one, but you could only get it in a refill and I needed the whole shebang to start out. So, I ended up with gingerbread spice and sweet water.

Now, if you have read my blog at all you know that I have a strong aversion to used water. So, my instinct was to wonder how does one find sweet water....and where can I get it. I sure hope that after I use this thing it doesn't smell like used water...does used water smell? I am sure some does.

Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised when I got home and plugged them in. The smells are nice, but not too overpowering. They say they will last 8 weeks....I will keep you posted on that part! My main hang up with them is that I wish I could get some that don't have to be plugged in. I like to conserve energy. It is what I do. The only other form I could get them in at this particular store was candles. I didn't like the idea of that since I wouldn't be home when I needed them to be making my house smell pretty. I do see on their website tho that they offer them in aroma rings. That may be a way to go. Of course, I would have to see if they were recyclable!

Monday, September 17, 2007

I still can't seem to laugh about it

It has happened to me. I am 32, ummm...33 now. And for the first time in my whole life I left something on my cart in the grocery store parking lot.

I have decided that I am too busy. I am too rushed. I feel like I am running, running, all the time. I know it has everything to do with getting the house on the market in time. It could not possibly have anything to do with the fact that I have 2 kids in school, soccer, band, book clubs, and a toddler running around. Nah. Not at all.

I used to look in amazement when I would see carts in the parking lot with items left on them. I would talk to myself and say things like, How could they forget that case of soda there? How could you not see that huge jug of laundry soap? In my case, how could I not remember that I placed that large jug of freshly squeezed orange juice on the bottom of the cart because my 1 yr old was determined to fit the whole pour spout in his mouth and I was tired of telling him to stop it. How could I do that? How could I forget?

The worst part....I totally didn't even realize I had left it until later that evening(mind you, I went to the store at 8am and he got home at 5pm) when my husband got home and I was telling him how I had gone over budget on the groceries. I was telling him that I was confused as to what I had gotten that made me go over....I must have forgot to add something up while I was sorta struck me just then...I don't remember putting away my OJ....My must still be in the van....I leave the sink, fistful of unsnapped beans in go retrieve it....yeah...not so much...It was then, at that very moment I realized that I...Me, had left something on the cart. What is happening to me?

Make me feel better and tell me that you have left something in your cart before. Even if you have to make something up.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

You can tell its almost Fall


You send your daughter to school in high water pants.

When you have to squeeze and shove and twist and turn your toddler's foot to get him into his sneaker.

When you have to send your son to school in a sweatshirt that is really way too small and when he raises his arms up the sweatshirt is pretty much up to his elbows.

Gotta love it! It really just reaffirms to me that all my local cooking over the summer really did the trick!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Surprise visitors

Okay, so I am out in the yard working. Imagine that, huh? Minding my own business...moving some rocks, mowing the lawn....

In the far back corner of my yard I planted a weeping willow. I love it. I do.

I needed to tidy things up a bit back there, so I set out to work...gloves on my hands. Now, mind you, I very seldom wear gloves when I work. Mainly because I find it very hard to find good gloves that fit my hands and that will stay on during the many tasks that I do outdoors.

I am now under the canopy of the weeping willow spreading out mulch and getting nailed every so often by the in ground sprinkler system that my neighborhood put in on the berms. (As well as getting eaten alive by mosquitoes) Here and there I find a sandstone rock that needs to be moved, so I find a new
place for it. I am now in the process of cleaning off a rather large rock and getting ready to do the 1, 2 , 3 Move process. You know when you are in the almost sitting position and you have to 1. Squat. 2. lift the object with your knees bent and 3. stand up and make that really loud hmmmppphhh noise......

Yeah, so I am doing that. I am pretty much at the number 2 phase when all of a sudden there is this:

Crawling on me. On my, thank the lord, gloved hands. What the heavens is it? And where did it come from? And yes, I did make a really loud noise...something like AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH... and then What the HEdoublehockey sticks?

I had to run in and get the camera....hurry, fast...I run and run. Okay, got it. Now back, back....back to the corner. Bending down to look at it after I pretty much flung it off my hand only moments before.

I don't like it. It looks like a rodent. Not a mouse, not a gopher...maybe a mole? Dunno.

Hi baby Molpher. go on back home....I am still there taking pictures...many that didn't even turn out because I was swatting so many bugs that they were all blurry. Hmmmm....there is a big something moving under the is coming this way....right towards me and my picture taking self....I am now very much 0n my feet and backed away from the mulch....when I see the mama of the Molpher.....

HI mama Molpher....come get your baby.....mama Molpher is not very friendly. I couldn't get any pics, but I must say that baby Molpher got a good talking to. Mama Molper grabbed baby Molpher and scurried off...I, came inside and used lots of soap and water and scrubbed up to my elbows.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Mulchin it up

In preparation of placing our home on the market we have been cleaning up outside and making things look nice and pretty. Can I just say that I don't ever want to see another sliver of mulch again?

We had 5 yards of hardwood mulch delivered to our house so that we could spruce up the flower beds and all that good stuff. For those of us, myself included, that have a hard time visualizing what that's a lot. It is like one side of a 2 car driveway...piled about as high as a 1 yr old.

Me and my trusty shovel and wheelbarrow then proceeded to take load after load all over the yard and spread it out in the appropriate places. It was really hot out. I sweated. (Is that a word?) Towards the end of the pile I had to call in the troops. Kids had to come out and spread the mulch so I could then move it much faster.

I have to say that it does look tons better. Does it look good enuf to reel in a buyer? Heck yeah. Will it happen? I dunno. And I am glad that we have a landscape recycling center near our home so that we could utilize recycled products. It always makes me sleep a little better at night knowing that I have made a green choice.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

One Local Summer

To all my OLS pals, I would like to apologize for not being able to finish out the last few weeks. My summer was turned upside down after my surgery and then complications followed that. Please know that I still did eat my local meals the best I could. They just weren't what I had planned or envisioned that my contributions would be. That's not to say that they weren't good!

On the flip side, eating local doesn't have to be fancy and it doesn't have to take a lot of time. I am a prime example of that. As long as you have access to fresh, whole foods....please, please take full advantage of that. It can be as simple as a BLT and some new potato fries.

I would like to send a shout out to Liz, who really put all this together. I read your posts and am inspired all the time. I learn all kinds of things from you. And to El, who took the time to keep us all up to date on the Midwestern OLS'ers. Thanks for everything guys. You are both an inspiration.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sportin a new do

Yep. That's my godson.

He loves his new do.

Your welcome, mommy.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

I am waiting

Okay, Meijer. I am waiting for you to jump on board with all this.

Na na na na BOO BOO

I had a birthday a little while ago. And look at what I got!

I know, can you believe it? Don't you want it? Too bad. It's all mine. My girlfriend made it for me. (I won't add the part about me actually requesting her to make it for me). She is a super knitter. She makes the awesomest things.

I love it and I can't wait to use it. I have been a little apprehensive to use it yet since we have been getting so much rain. It is wool, felted wool. I can't wash it. It may be a special occasion know the one....the one where you aren't taking everything for all your kids in it kinda bag. The one where I don't have to make sure I have a diaper and a sippy cup and a snack...well, okay. I like snacks, so it will prolly have to have those in there.

Hmmm...come to think of it, I need one of those days where I can use that bag....

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Laundry soap 1.0

Mmmmmm....look yummy? Nope, it's not cheese!

I have had this recipe for some time now. I actually got it online somewhere and just hung onto it knowing that I would make it at some point. She has one as well. Hers has scent added to it. I am not that cool.

My daughter and I finally made it the other day. It was really quite easy. You have to have 3 things to throw it all together. The hardest part was grating the bar soap. And that wasn't so much hard as it was messy. I probably could have used my food processer, but I was worried that everything after that would have a slightly soapy taste. Mmmmm..soapy cheese. Great for tacos.

1 C grated Fels Naptha bar soap
1/2 C Borax
1/2 C Washing soda

Mix well in a resealable container. Use 1T per load. 2 T for heavier soiled clothes.

I found all of the ingredients in my local grocery store. They were in the laundry soap aisle.

The soap seems to clean really well. It has a nice fresh, clean scent. However, if you have a super sniffer like myself, it may seem strong at first. It lessened tho, as I used it more. Well, I got acclimated to it, I should say.

Try it out. Let me know what you think. It is a huge money saver. And you know I love those!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Blue and Brown swap

One side of the bag

The other side of the bag

I am so loving my stuff from my swap. Thank you so much to my swapping buddy.

How did she know that I love bags! Any kinda bag...reusable, that is! And I got 2. Yes, 2. And the great sunglasses holder. Love the pattern. And some cards and some computer paper. I got a new magazine to read and my kids are already drooling over the rock candy! There were some cool little stickers for crafts or scrapping, some ribbon and some towels. Even a little notepad. Oh, and a little take out box filled with thumb tacks. And some gum!

I have to say, the bags are my fave. Love them! Especially the one with the beads on it. I can already see myself carrying it now!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Paintin Poll

Okay, here goes.

I am trying to get my house ready for the market. Yeah, the pain in your butt, people coming in your house all the time, market. I am excited and not. I am stressed and not. I am overwhelmed and okay, overwhelmed.

Had the Realtor in to look around and give us some feedback on potential changes to be made. We pretty much know what all we need to do, but hey, this is what he does all day, right? I'm not one to pass up help.

I knew one of the suggestions he was going to make was that I need to paint my family room. To make it a more neutral color. Currently it is a terra cotta color. (Terra warmth, to be exact) A dark, rusty orange color. I love it. I do, however, realize that everyone may not love it like I do. (As strange as that seems to me.) It is a pretty big room. It would be a pretty big project. Especially with a one year old running around. It is the main family living space.

So, do I paint it or not? Do I take the chance that I may miss some buyers because of the color of my room? If you were looking for a house would you not buy it based on one room color?

Help me. I need help. I am so on the fence.

Monday, August 13, 2007

moving along

The kids had their dental checkups a few days ago. Routine things, you know, cleaning, x-rays, fluoride, blah, blah, blah.

The dentist comes out to give me the report. No cavities! Great, Fantastic. Let's get outta here.

Not so fast...K has a molar that is trying to come in and the current tooth is not yet ready to fall out. Okay. Seems normal enuf to me. Just keep wiggling it and it will come out. What's the problem? Well, I would like to give you a week to get it out on your own and if that doesn't happen then she will need to come back in and have it taken out. What? Why? Can't I have more than week? No, I don't think so...actually, why don't you just come on back now and we will pull it out. (At this point I am near hyperventilation) How does one explain to her 11 yr old that right now, this very minute, after you were given the green light, that actually, no, we aren't done. We have just one more little thing to do????

So, I head out the the lobby, 1 yr old squirming in my arms and 8 yr old making it clear that he is ready to go home, to inform 11 yr old that she has to have a tooth extracted...RIGHT NOW.

It went over much better than I had anticipated. I dreaded those few, short steps to the lobby to tell her. We get back there and she gets all set up. There were way too many shots..I think about 8 times to be exact...there was a little crying during the shot process. Then I got to watch them yank a great, big ol tooth outta my tiny, little daughter's head. Yeah. Not so much liking that. Coulda done without ever seeing that.

Dentist gets it pulled out and shows me the tooth, pointing out the huge root still intact and saying this never would have come out on it's own. Be very careful of the tooth. It is very sharp. Uh-huh. Okay. Very sharp, got it.

Puts it in a little purple treasure box, hands me some gauze and a great big bill and we are all done. NO talking for 30 minutes and don't use a straw at all today. Uh-huh. Okay.

Later on that evening, we had a serious talk with the tooth fairy and put in a good word for said 11 yr old.

Next morning...11 yr old comes down...very befuddled...Were you half asleep when you left me this, she asks? Left you what, I say? This 20 bucks. Nope, I say. Getting a tooth pulled outta your head is worth quite a bit in my opinion. Especially when I would have been slobbering like a big baby if I had to do that. And you didn't and you were very brave. So, there you go. 11 yr old is walking off totally giddy. I say, just make sure this doesn't become a habit.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

One Local Summer

I am not sure what week we are on...I am gonna hazard a guess and say 7. Honest, I am still in the game! I promise to do better from now on.

OLS #7
Grilled Strip Steak---grass fed---80 miles

Mashed Yukon gold taters----organic----60 miles

Roasted green beans---90 miles

Sour cream cucumbers----my backyard---okay, so not the sour cream---that was 180 miles and is hormone free

Biscuit----totally not local

Milk---hormone and antibiotic free---180 miles

Now, if only I hadn't just had my braces adjusted....I might be able to enjoy my steak a little more.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

cherry, schmerry

So, I had this great idea, right? Well, I mean, I had some help from the Food Network. (Note to self...whilst sick and unable to eat anything...watching the Food Network is prolly not the best idea.)

While wasting away on my couch I had seen this great idea on one of the cooking shows on how to use a bunch of cherry tomatoes at one time. Since we are harvesting those daily from the garden I figured what better way to use them up.

The general idea was to use a bunch of them, put them in an oven-safe pan and add some garlic cloves, olive oil, oregano, and basil. Roast them in the oven. Sounds easy enough. I think I had them in there for like 30 minutes total. The smell was heavenly. I was thinking that I was really onto something here! I pulled them out, put them in the blender and blended it all together for a nice sauce.

Yeah, not so much. It was very bitter. Very. I decide to add a splash of cream and a little sugar to see if that would tone it down bit. It did help, but it was still not what I had in mind. And for sure not what the delicious smells were boosting it up to be.

Any ideas? What could I have done differently?

Monday, August 6, 2007


Not that anyone out there is wondering where I have been....but I do want to apologize to my OLS buddies for not meeting my commitment of the one local meal a week program.

As some of you know, I had a date with the hospital several weeks back and I ended up experiencing some complications after the surgery. I got home and things took a nasty turn for the worse. After many meds and restless nights, I am hopeful that I am on the upward trend now!

I feel like I have been out of the loop forever. Please fill me in on what you have been up to. And everything exciting that I missed.

Friday, July 20, 2007

One Local Summer

One Local Summer Week 4

Grilled Pork Chops---organic---Triple S Farms---50 miles
Roasted Yellow Beans---organic---Triple S Farms---50 miles
Grilled summer squash and zucchini---organic---my backyard
Cucumbers---organic---my backyard

Not local----salt and pepper and olive oil

Normally we don't eat much pork....even tho we really like it. We tend to save it for special occasions and this was well worth the wait. The yellow beans were a new one for us. We usually get the green ones, but these looked so yummy I went for them instead! They were really good, but the kids voted that they like the green ones better. I have seem purple ones out there, too. I will have to try those out in the near future, too!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Seven Strange Things About Me

Okay, so 4 score and seven years ago...Expat tagged me for this meme. I had very good intentions of fulfilling my meme duties. I really did. And then as life always does, it threw me a huge curve ball. Normally, I take most of them in stride. This one, however, really knocked me off my keester.

So, without further delay I will share with you all of my strangeness. Some of these things I am pretty sure I have mentioned before.

1. I despise the sound and feeling of an emery board upon my fingers and toes. The one and only time I went in for a pedicure(because everyone had said how great they were)I wanted to be done before it almost got started. The vibrating chair they put you in was no good either.

2. I have a strong aversion to used water. Like the water that sloshes out of swimming pools and collects on the deck and then you have to walk in it after other people's feet have touched it and the water that you use in the sink to wash your dirty dishes and the water that collects on the outside of glass. Okay, I gotta's grossing me out.

3. I love chocolate, especially dark. I don't love chocolate ice cream. In fact, I don't like it even.

4. The only way I could get my husband to ask me to marry him was if I made him a sandwich....Needless to say he never got the sandwich, but we did have a lovely wedding and almost 12 yrs later we are still very much in love.

5. I love toe socks. They make my toes feel all warm and toasty.

6. I am addicted to Carmex. I carry it on my person at all times. I just have to have it. I don't like dry lips. Just a minute, I gotta go get some. I am still in my jammies and I don't have any pockets to carry it.

7. So, you know how when you buy a set of silverware it comes with big forks and little forks? I am sure they each have a place, right? I am not sure what that is, but for me I always use the little one. The big one is just too big. The little one is just right for me. So, when we go to people's houses that actually use the forks the right husband will give me both of his little ones in exchange for the bigger ones. Now that is true love.

Sunday, July 15, 2007