Friday, October 31, 2008

Mixed emotions about Halloween

Theoretically, I want to LOVE Halloween with my kids... the trick-or-treating, the coming up with cute costumes, the excitement of seeing other friends dressed up.

The REALITY, however, is that I really do NOT have fun! The whining because they're cold/tired/hungry (hello??? see all the candy?)/etc. is no fun. Neither is the whining by their dad (or any other dad that may happen to be around!).

The other downside for me is that we live WAY out in the country, so we have to drive to wherever we're going to trick-or-treat. Which means that at least PART of the costume comes off, never to be put back on again the rest of the night.

And... I believe I've mentioned REPEATEDLY how I am a lazy mom (remember my dead tomato plant I used as decorations at Sis's birthday party?), and I like it that way. Halloween goes against every "lazy mom" intentions that I have! There is NOTHING lazy about Halloween!

But guess what? I do it all anyway.


Because, even though one might think that my kids are MISERABLE, the fact is that they really enjoy it. All of it. The dressing up. The trick-or-treating. The candy. The seeing other friends dressed up.

And there is ONE bonus for me... Bub doesn't like chocolate and is allergic to nuts... that means I get all the Reese's Peanut Butter cups I want. Mmmmmm.....

Happy Halloween!

**these are pictures from other years (some not even Halloween!). Tonight's "looks" will be posted later.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

New Blog

For those of you who attend my church (or are interested in what's going on), we have started a new blog for the Young Families group. It's a place for us to connect, post pictures from our activities, post upcoming activities, and post prayer requests/praise reports.

The web site is:

Thankful Thursday - Introduction

Today I am starting my Thankful Thursday post... I will (hopefully, if I remember) post three things each Thursday that I am thankful for (did you catch all that alliteration?).

In your comments, you can put YOUR three things that you are thankful for.

1. I'm thankful my dad is home from his month-long trip.
2. I'm thankful for my church family.
3. I'm thankful for my children's teachers. They are shaping my children's behavior/learning in ways that I agree with!

Now it's YOUR turn!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

You Might Be a Redneck - Part 2

So, as I mentioned earlier, while not EVERYONE dressed up for the Redneck bonfire, there were some who represented the rednecks well (or not!). What came up frequently as we were discussing our outfits was how MOST of the stuff in our "costume" was our real clothes. It's all in how you put it together, I guess.

I thought I'd start you off with the prettiest picture of the night... the fall decorations on our front porch.
Sis looked more Western and cute than redneck, so I encouraged her to put on makeup... and as much as she wanted. You can't see from this picture, but the look we were going for was achieved!

Here's Bub and his friend, A, by the basketball court.

OK. Take a deep breath.

You're about to experience the first view of my "look."


Here we go!!!

So, what exactly goes into a look like this, you might ask? Let's start with the hair... I dried it parted in the middle, then put a few braids in it here and there to take out later for the "frizzy" look. I curled my "bangs" under, then put mascara in all my roots showing to make my roots black.

Makeup, you ask? The eye makeup is all Sis's... from Disney. And boy, does it stay on for a LONG time! Then some bright blush, and no other makeup at all completes the look.

The dragon tattoo on my neck and the skull/crossbones on my chest (not pictured above) are courtesy of Spencer's.

My shirts were already in my closet. The too-tight leggings? Goodwill. But they just weren't obnoxious enough! So what to add to the look????

The eggshell stuff that you put on mattresses, THAT'S what!!!

Here's a closeup of the classy tattoo on my neck... yup, that's the lens cap of the camera in my mouth! Didn't think THAT was gonna show up!

Here I am with a redneck I found... just kidding... it's just Don!

So, when the party started, the first few people who showed up did NOT dress up... or they just dressed Western... which was also cute. Then my friend, Cathy, showed up and took over the redneck award. What do you think???

There were so many hilarious details to her outfit... her "tattoo" on her leg said I "heart" Bob (crossed out), Billy (crossed out), This Guy. I think the picture says more than I ever could!!!

Here we are together!!!

Here's Gillian. She looked like the rednecks that live around us... her shirt said, "You Mess with Me, You Mess with the WHOLE Trailerpark!"

The came Kevin and Kristin. They could possibly be my preppiest friends. They came as Dog the Bounty Hunter and Beth!

Here's my lovely sister. Her "Flo" wig, the lipstick on the teeth, and the black bobby socks with "thong" sandals on were key to her redneck look!

Not pictured was the shotgun wedding family, and lots of other John Deere/plaid shirts/bandanna/camouflage looks.... which are all looks that my immediate family wears/embraces. I think that's the bottom line... although we went EXTREME for this party, I think I just MIGHT be a redneck!!!

Monday, October 27, 2008

20 wishes and redneck update

I am listening to a book on CD right now called 20 Wishes. It's not the deepest book, but it's a cute storyline, and I'm enjoying it. The book's premise centers around a group of people making a list of 20 wishes that they want to have/achieve. They don't have to be practical, or even likely. They just have to be things that the person making the list REALLY would like to do or have happen.

So, I've been thinking about what I would put on my 20 Wishes list. Then I thought... why not just MAKE a 20 Wishes list?! So, I've begun formulating it in my mind. I am going to add a list to the side of my blog with my 20 wishes on it... it will be a work in progress for a while. So far, I want to visit all 50 states (layovers don't count!), and visit Italy. So, look for my list in the near future!


Also, look for my HILARIOUS pictures coming (probably tomorrow) of our redneck bonfire. To say people went above and beyond would be a HUGE understatement! It was a lot of fun!

Friday, October 24, 2008

If pride goes before a fall, I shouldn't be falling ANY time soon!

I just downloaded all my pictures from my cell phone, so here are some random shots...

Bub winning a soccer trophy last year...
Sis shoveling snow during a snowstorm...
The next few pictures are from a visit the kids and I made to Uncle B's several months ago... here is Bub and Uncle B playing Rock Band (look for future posts with a possible video)
At Uncle B's apartment, B and I realized the kids had been quiet for WAY too long... here's what we found when we went in the guest bedroom. If the picture isn't clear enough... Sis has Bub's mouth taped shut and has him tied up with a belt. Nice...
Since Don didn't make the trip with us, we kept texting him pictures of us to keep him from being lonely. Sis asked for this "tattoo" (with ink pen) to send to her Daddy...

Sis took this picture of me the day I got all my hair cut off...

I took this picture of HER the day she got all HER hair cut off!

A self portrait with Fredbird to show the kids... too bad it's so blurry you can barely tell it's us!
Bub was at Nana and Papa's house one night, and he and Papa wanted to show me that he could now ride the motorcycle with Papa because Papa bought him a helmet... I still said "no."
Here's our first day in Florida... notice the dorky Disney buttons we are wearing on our shirts.
The last picture is to PROVE that I have no pride! I believe I've mentioned before that I have a pink hardhat where I work (because I'm prissy? Surely not!). Then the safety guy brought in new safety glasses that he's thinking of making everyone wear. Talk about UGLY! I think in the military, they would call that style "birth control glasses." So, I got silly and decided to model them with my hardhat on.
Did I mention I have no pride at all?
Otherwise, why would I possibly show ANYONE this picture?
Nope. No pride.
At all.
I'm hanging my head in shame now...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Shack

So, I've joined the throngs of other people who have recently read The Shack. For a novel, it was great! It was an easy read on one hand, but really thought-provoking on the other.

While I don't necessarily agree with all the doctrine mentioned in the book, it really made me think outside the box of normal "religion." In that way, it reminded me of Blue Like Jazz (another great book). I think it would be a really good book who are questioning "religion" and are looking for something more. I think out of the whole book, there were 2 things I pulled from the book.

1. Religion isn't what it's all about. At all. It's a personal relationship with God that is the key. There is a commercial on the Christian radio station that runs regularly for That's what this reminds me of.

2. Forgiveness is what we're called to do to those who hurt us (and don't necessarily deserve it). And it's really the only way we can move on. And deepen our relationships with God and others. That's hard for me to hear... and do. This book showed this in a really personal way.

I have to say that this is probably the first time EVER I've highlighted a passage from a fiction book, but here it is:
Jesus now spoke again. "Mack, I don't want to be first among a list
of values; I want to be at the center of everything. When I live in you,
then together we can live through everything that happens to you. Rather
than a pyramid, I want to be the center of a mobile, where everything in your
life -- your friends, family, occupation, thoughts, activities -- it connected
to me but moves with the wind, in and out and back and forth, in an incredible
dance of being."

Who Needs an Awesome Photographer?

My Friend Becca has a photography business, and she came out to our house this past weekend to take numerous family photos for us! I got the proofs today, and I was amazed! If you live in my area, I would HIGHLY recommend calling Becca for reasonable, amazing photographs. Here is the link to Keller Photography if you want to review her photos (including my family's). Her contact information is found on the main page. Enjoy our proofs!

Friday, October 17, 2008

You might be a Redneck if...

Don and I are having our annual church bonfire at the end of this month. This will be either our 4th or 5th year (can't remember), but last year was the first year we had a theme. I'm slightly embarrassed to say that the idea of last year's theme came from a haircut I got. As my hair guy was blow drying my new 'do, I commented that I could TOTALLY pull of the feathered look from high school. Thus the theme of last year's event was the '80's. And boy, did people pull out all the stops! It was awesome! Here are a few of the fun looks:

So, our dilemma became what to make THIS YEAR'S theme. We all agreed that we couldn't possibly beat last year's (since the '80's were so close to all of our hearts!), but finally a friend came up with a close second... REDNECK!

So, now I am struggling with what to wear for the huge event. Does anyone have any ideas? I'm pretty sure I know how I'm going to do my hair (if I can figure out how to get my roots temporarily black), and I've bought plenty of temporary tattoos for my neck. But clothes??? I think the biggest problem is coming up with something that my pride will let me wear! I mean, I could wear daisy dukes and a bikini top, but THAT WOULD NEVER HAPPEN!!!

I could use some suggestions. And if I've offended any of you rednecks out there, this is all in fun. I apologize. And please send me a picture of your favorite outfit! :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Monkeying around

So, the kids were "stuck" in the car for a bit of time yesterday afternoon as we ran errands. They had some of Sis's stuffed monkeys with them (they're all a family, according to her) that we had picked up from another location. So they started playing "monkey house" with them.

The monkey kids (the twin boys, both played by Bub) had just been at school. Only one returned home, so Mama Monkey (played by Sis) wanted to know where the other brother was.

Sis: Where is your brother?

Bub: He got a suspension at school.

Sis (whispering to Bub): No, not a suspension. He got a detention!

Bub: He got a detention at school.

Sis: Oh, he's getting a spit bath when he gets home!

Bub (muttering quietly like a teenage boy): Yeah, like THAT'S a surprise!

Sis: What did you say, Mister?

Bub (sweetly? sarcastically?): I said, Yes, Mother, I thought that he would probably get a spit bath when he returned.

Monday, October 13, 2008

{{Waving the White Flag}}

I surrender!!! I can't do this detox anymore!!! As we speak, Don is eating Steak n Shake...

It's not even necessarily ONLY eating fruits and veggies that's been so bad (although at times, I've wanted to cry for meat or cheese or milk or cereal or pizza or coffee!!!)...

For ME, it's mostly been the shakes and the supplements. I still gag EVERY single time I take them.

For DON, the biggest problem has been no energy. And I agree. With only a SLIGHT exaggeration, I fell asleep every time I sat down this weekend! I think it would get better on Day 11 when we could start having chicken/turkey/fish, but I'm still a long way from there!!!

On the positive, I have shaken my addiction to caffeine! I no longer have headaches. And I weigh 5 pounds less than I did 6 days ago... that's something.

But I QUIT!!!!!!!

See you at Dairy Queen! (Just Kidding) (Maybe)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

A Bug's Life no more!!!!

So, this is what I found on my coffee maker this morning... just not the cartoon version. And it didn't talk in the voice of David Hyde Pierce. And it wasn't cute, or sarcastic like in the Bug's Life. And I killed it. After I yelled.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Our Dinner Last Night

Notice the grit on the side of the cup (I had already drunk some of the nasty stuff):
You would have thought Wolfgang Puck made us this broccoli... it was our first cooked food since we started this project. Any other day, it would have been just okay, but last night... DELICIOUS!
Hungry, anyone?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

O the leaves, they are a-changin'!

Random shots from outside...

I'd Marry Juan Valdez Right Now

Or Mr Starbucks. Or Mr Folgers.

Here are the things I DIDN'T consider before starting my detox "fun:"

I should probably taper off the caffeine injections beforehand rather than going cold turkey. For example, having Grande Skinny Pumpkin Spice Lattes from Starbucks 4 days in a row... probably not a great idea.

I really like food... chewing food. Not drinking some yucky so-called-food.

I have an overactive gag reflex when I smell yucky food... I'll say no more on that subject.

On the flipside:

I lost 3 pounds yesterday! I think it was the fact that all I had all day was two (GROSS) "shakes," an apple, an orange, green tea, some carrots and a boatload of nutritional supplements.

Do I have any converts yet???

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I'm starting Detox today

Not in the Britney Spears/Amy Winehouse kind of way, but still...

Everywhere I look lately it seems like someone is selling some kind of Colon Cleanse products, but I was interested in a "natural" cleansing. So, Don and I did a little research (actually DON did the research), and we decided on a 21-day program. I just started this morning, and let me say... IT'S DISGUSTING. Everything just smells so HEALTHY. Remember how the old Swiss Farms Salad place used to smell like vitamins when you first walked in (b/c they sold all those vitamins)??? That's how this stuff smells. YUK!

So, I "get" to have 2-3 "shakes" a day, which consist of some nutritional powder, flax seed oil, fruit, and ice/water. I had my first one today... once I got past the smell, I did okay. I can also have all the fruits and vegetables I want for the first 10 days (I'm supposed to eat double the vegetables than the fruits). Then starting day 11, I can add fish and limited organic chicken/turkey.

I can also drink unlimited amounts of green tea. Which I like. But which is NOT coffee.

This does NOT make me happy! :(

Have I talked all of you into trying it? Even with all my whining, I am really excited about trying this. I am interested to see if it really DOES clear up my skin, and if it really DOES make me feel less sluggish/tired. I'll let you know...

In the meantime, anyone have any coffee that I can just smell??? I'd appreciate it!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Happy Birthday to my BFF

The other day when it was Sis's birthday, we had "friendship bracelets" for all the cousins to put in their treat bags (that they painted... see below!). I bought more than I needed, because I know kids enough to know that they would want a SPECIFIC color... so we had two orange ones left. Don and I put them on later that night, and showed the kids... I told them that Don and I were now BFFs. They just rolled their eyes.

But we are.

He's the one I want to call when something funny happens. Or sad. Or angering. Or weird.

He can make me laugh the most. And cry the most. And feel the most.

Because he is my BFF. And my husband. And a great Daddy.

And it was his birthday... yesterday. I was too busy spending what little time we had together WITH HIM that I didn't post this until today.

So, Happy Birthday!!!