Saturday, November 29, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I love, love, love Thanksgiving.  It's not because I particularly love pilgrims, or cooking, or even turkey for that matter, but it is because I get to have the entire family over.  I would be happy doing it every week.  Honestly, I would.  I grew up with a very tiny immediate family, but lots of aunts, uncles and cousins that always celebrated holidays together.  Once my family moved from Illinois to Kentucky it was harder to get everybody together and it rarely happened.  Since getting married, I've inherited my own large family!  At first it felt a little like being a code breaker.  I wasn't even totally clear on names and relation, let alone history.  There were some customs that I had to learn. For instance, when traveling with food, you put all your items in a laundry basket lined with towels.  Did you know that?  It's a very sensible thing to do, it keeps the food warm and is easy to transport.  I also felt so inadequate at first, being surrounded by these confident, strong Boddeker women made me a little intimidated.  I was so nervous, that I never ate when we had parties at our house!  Since then, I have learned to relax and enjoy the day.  Even when the oven dies and we have to transport 2 raw birds to my mother in law's house via golfcart.  No worries, because Melissa brought the wine!!

Look Melanie!  We did it and it was FUN!

After eating we went for the traditional Thanksgiving swim and rock wall climbing exhibition.  Just like on the First Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A Visit from Gracie

Hannah's cousin Gracie came over for a visit today. They had so much fun dressing up, painting finger and toenails, taking on and off various house slippers and playing with Playdough. There was a little discussion about what little girls are allowed to do vs. what big girls are allowed to do, also some talk surrounding ballet slippers and sharing. Gracie brought over Hannah's favorite treat of all time...PEZ!! The consensus is that both girls like Pez and that Pez is crunchy. Really, there is nothing better than eating your favorite candy with your favorite friend while in a fairy/princess dress. (Mary Jo, I'm lookin' at you!)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sweeping Sam

Hannah's Grandma Lisa gave her this talking broom.  His name is Sweeping Sam.  I know this because he says, "Hello, I'm Sweeping Sam" anytime you look at him.  He's real sassy, this broom!  He comments on your work with no regard for how hard it was for you to even get up off the couch, let alone tackle the crumby floor with only a plastic, talking broom.  He also tells lies like "It's fun to clean up."  Well, yesterday Hannah had had enough of his sass.  She was sitting next to Sam when he started mouthing off and I could tell she just wasn't going to take anymore!  She said, "No, I did not miss a spot again!"  Later she told him that it was NOT FUN to clean up.  NOT FUN!!!  I have to agree.
PS-  I will try to find my child pajamas that cover both her belly and her bottom.

I Finally Moved In!

Something has gotten into me. Is it Fall Spring cleaning? Maybe it's pregnancy "nesting" without the pregnancy. Or perhaps I am just tired of having boxes of my stuff in the basement. Regardless, I have finally decided to go through closets, drawers, cabinets, basements, garages and attics to clean out baby stuff, beat up kid stuff, mismatched Polly Pocket shoes, legless Barbies, ex-wife stuff, wedding gifts and wedding albums from Paul's first wedding. It has been quite an adventure! I found things that I didn't even know were stored in this house. I have had to make strange decisions like what do I do with a photo album from Paul's previous wedding? What about the wedding videos? What about the bridal shower videos? The kids will want to have them someday, right? Where do I store them in the meantime? I have filled a dumpster (no exaggeration) and have made so, so, so many trips to Goodwill. I have become a joke at work where I question my employees about their hobbies and hobbies of their family members so that I can bring them snow globes and baby stuff and extra clothes hangers. Weird stuff. I was in a crazy frenzy to get this house organized. I stayed up until 2 or 3 am just to finish a closet or a cabinet. I was beginning to feel cluttered in my house and in my head. I made the decision that if in the 4 years that I have been in this house I have never used something, or better yet, didn't even know what it was, then it was time to get rid of it! The end result? I have space! I have organization! I have my old stuff surrounding me again! I redecorated each kid's room by just moving things from one room to another or using things in different ways. Cassie was so excited about her new Littlest Pet Shop set-up (Christian's old train table) and her new reading lamp (Holly's old lamp-she had 4 others in her room!) that she reads at least 20 pages a night in her bed. She cleans her room every night and makes her bed every morning! We choose her outfits for the week and hang them in old sweater organizers that I found and now she doesn't have to have help trying to find something that matches every day!

See this little kitty?  Well, he is the size of a quarter.  He comes with a removable cast.  Did you hear that?  A removable cast.  That little, teeny, tiny white thing on its leg.  Yeah, it comes off.  Then must be found.  Usually smooshed in the carpet.  
In Christian's room, he and I went through all of his clothes and gave a friend 2 garbage bags of things he had outgrown. It meant that he only needed one dresser. Then we moved in a desk from Holly's room and brought in an art easel that I found in Cassie's closet. Now he goes up to his room to draw and color. He's a great artist and makes amazing things up there!
Holly's room is now free from baby dolls, Barbies, Disney Princesses, and any stuffed animals that do not hold sentimental value for her. We were able to create a really neat "sitting and talking on the phone" space for her.

Hannah's baby crib and changing table was given to a friend at work and now she has a toddler bed. Her baby clothes were boxed up to be donated to a local family in need. Holly's old baby doll bunk bed now contains Hannah's monkey and various "babies"! I pulled an old rolling laundry rack out of the basement and hung all the dress up gowns and costumes (that I didn't know we had!!) in the bonus room so that the girls can actually wear them now. This meant that last weekend both Hannah and Cassie were fairy princesses all weekend long!

The sunroom is an arts and crafts room. Supplies are organized in boxes labeled things like: Feathers, Googly Eyes, Buttons, Beads. I have an entire bin filled with nothing but Playdough!!

It finally feels like my home. It is starting to feel warm and cozy.

Then Paul asked me what I did with the CD protectors that were in this drawer right here. You know, those paper/plastic things that you buy at flea market by the hundreds? I didn't throw them away did I? Where did I put them? Why would I throw them away when he needs them? 

Then I beat him senseless with a Barbie leg. When he came to, he apologized.  I did not. 
The end.

Oh yeah, I'm tired. Really tired.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Monday, November 17, 2008

Good Annunciation Can Clear up Confusion


Every night before bed Hannah likes to be rocked.  We talk about our favorite parts of the day (Hannah's favorite part is generally whatever she did about 2 seconds before I asked the question!)   Then we talk about what kind of dreams we might have while sleeping.  Hannah always says that she dreams about me and that I'm cooking.  It's almost as if she knows this dream will never come true.  We read a story (Harry the Dirty Dog is the most requested at the moment.)  Then comes the talent portion of the evening.  This is where I sing on demand.  Tonight I decided on "Jesus Loves Me" so that I could really showcase my range.  Hannah stopped me after the chorus, looked up at me and said, "Mommy, Cheez-Its don't love me.  Cheez-Its don't even have mouths!"  Perhaps we should stop with the junk food and get this girl a little religion!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Who Dat?

You remember Vilas, right?  Well yesterday she had quite a mishap on her bike.  She and my Dad went with their neighborhood biker gang to a trail about an hour away.  Mom and Dad got to show off their new bike rack.  They have been training for quite some time by riding 10-15 miles a day to breakfast and back.  I went with them once and thought I was going to die.  If there were taxis in The Villages I would have called one for the ride home.  So, they are on this trail and another biker miscalculated her passing zone and clipped Mom's tire.  She flew off the bike onto the trail and couldn't move!  An ambulance was called (also a fire truck for some unknown reason.)  Mom still couldn't speak or move or see properly.  Until she heard the EMT describing an "elderly woman" with injuries.  That made her sit up and look around for the elderly lady in question.  When she realized that she was the elderly lady she was not happy.  Because her blood pressure was dangerously low they took her to the hospital where they proceeded to call her Margaret.  Which sort of sounds like Vilas but not really.  Margaret, the elderly woman, was released from the hospital with scrapes, bumps, bruises and a broken horn on her bike.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Hannah and I have been talking about manners and what it means to be polite.  I found manners flashcards in one of the closets I was cleaning (more on that crazy talk later!)  Turns out they are the devil.  I pictured the scenario going something like this:  Hannah and I sit down and calmly review the flashcards by first looking at the naughty side and discussing what was wrong.  Then we would talk about what could have been done and we would flip the card over and Viola!  She had the answer right all along!  We would talk about each card and when we completed them she would have perfect manners.  But, since these cards are the devil, and I set unrealistic expectations, it didn't really go as planned.  The first card:

The rest of the day (and several days since then) Hannah did this:

Devil cards.

Backseat Driver

Backseat drivers should not give conflicting instructions such as "watch where you are going" AND "turn around".  

Monday, November 3, 2008

A Good Mom Would Have Had This Post Up by November 1st!

Or not!  We started out strong,  4 children, me, a husband, and an ex-wife.  The hippie decided to abandon us for her friends; all of whom trick or treated while texting.  Because they can do that.  Then Frankenstein dropped by a friend's house and decided that making scary sounds into a microphone to scare the little kids was way better than candy.  Which was fine because the monster had been complaining about his bolts all night anyway.  That left the two bunnies.  They really raked it in.  What with being so cute and all.  The big bunny was the ringleader and decided which house to go to.  Once we explained the Halloween Code to her (porch light on= come get candy here, no porch light= go away!  I'm too cheap to buy candy!) she had it mastered!  The little bunny ran full steam ahead to each and every house.  She fell down porch steps once and then down 2 driveways, but injuries were only to the pride.  It did make me wonder though how adults would be perceived if we only ran places.  Would we be locked up?  ANYWAY, when all children were gathered from the neighborhood and candy loot was discussed, I looked back to find the littlest bunny squishing and smooshing a Kit Kat through a tiny hole that she bitten off the corner. I guess that is a good Halloween!