Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Airplane Poop-- Cute with Chris #138

This is my new favorite thing to watch on Youtube. He is very funny and his faces are priceless. If you have lots of extra time, like me, click on some of the related clips after it's done. "I Love You Stranger" and "I Hate My Name" are also very funny. I have LOTS and LOTS of extra time to watch things on Youtube. MUST DO WORK NOW. Happy Halloweenyness. Will post pics later.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Making Jack and Jim

Last night we made our Jack o' Lantern. This is one of our favorite things to do every year. We look at books for weeks and decide what we want to do. This year I checked out a Better Homes and Gardens Halloween book and we found our Jack o'Lantern idea right off! I usually don't do jack (pardon my pun); Quinn carves the pumpkin and makes everything look just right. The boys watch him the whole time, just waiting for him to finish. Then we turn off the lights and light him up!



Since we had so many pumpkins this year, thanks to Old Baker's Farm, we wanted to do something more unusual. We decided to carve two pumpkins and stack them. Corin sat with the first one that was already carved while Quinn started on the second. It was a doozy. The skin was very tough and it took almost an hour to carve it.



Finally, the face started to appear.







Then, Quinn fixed the top of the first one so that the tall, skinny one could sit on top of it. They appear to be looking at one another. Silas and Corin stack themselves with their pumpkins.






We loved the results!




Sunday, October 28, 2007

Grandma and Papaw come to visit!


We had a great time with my parents this weekend. Again, it made me think how nice it would be to live closer to family. The boys just ate them up. Felix would absolutely not leave my Dad alone. "Papaw, I wanna ride big traccor", is what he said ALL WEEKEND. They left a little while ago and now Felix is pouting on the couch, muttering "I wanna ride big traccor". I don't know why he got in his head that Daddy has a tractor, unless he is confusing Papaw (from Florida, who lives in the suburbs) with Papa (in Mississippi, who has a big tractor). Either way, he wanted Papaw to hold him (and he's no lightweight) or to be with him wherever he went. Mom and I got to go shopping yesterday and we got to eat out quite a bit. We tried Red Robin yesterday, which was good (great onion rings and all you can eat steak fries), but a little on the pricey side (8.99-9.99 for a hamburger). Friday we went to The Whistle Stop Cafe, which has been on my mother's "list" to eat at for a long time. It was good and the prices were ok. Friday night was Sol Azteca and you can absolutely never go wrong with Sol Azteca. We went to the one in Vestavia, which has the best atmosphere and it was packed. The best salsa around! Saturday were Soccer Games and then the Moody Fall Festival. The festival was fun, but I think it's absolutely REPULSIVE the way people charge for stuff. A pony ride was 5.00 per person and some jumpy thing was 10.00 (WHAT!) per kid. To jump on all the other jumpy things (unlimited- but not on the first jumpy thing, which was separate) was 15.00 per kid. Needless to say, my kids didn't get to do any of it. Pump It Up in Trussville is cheaper on its play days (5.00). I'm not paying what it costs to get into Disney for a day (or an hour and a half) at the festival. Fortunately, they handled it well (I guess they know I'm cheap). All the booths were handing out candy, and the Christian Motorcycle Association booth was giving away spooky cupcakes (very cute) and coloring books. I love free. They even let the kids sit on the motorcycles, which was better than a jumpy thing. The kids were content with their bags and tummies full of candy and cupcakes. The music was, um, karaoke-like and I kept thinking how much I would love to hear Stokes, Connie, Adam, Wayne, Jessie, and Elizabeth jam (praise team from our church). Maybe next year. All in all, had a great time and am looking forward to going to Florida on the eleventh for two weeks. Woo hoo!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

C Diddy rocks classical

This is the air guitar clip I showed the kids. The girls were fascinated by his Hello Kitty, um, shirt.

Air Guitar for Kids

No paper mache. I literally had nightmares after I posted because of the paper mache. I woke up the next morning fretting. My Mom and Dad are here and Mom taught preschool for years. She suggested talking about guitars, showing pictures of guitars, having Quinn come in with his guitar and play something, and have the kids design their version of the coolest guitar. Brilliant. She's always got good ideas for kids. We actually did all of those things and then watched a Youtube video on the air guitar championships. Uh, yeah I know. Funny. So we watched the video and made our guitars and then listened to the Beatles "Birthday" song. It's funny how the boys automatically know how to air guitar. There was sliding across the room, bending over to make it look like they were really getting the chords, and throwing their heads back as they were playing. No jumping off chairs because we would not allow it. Actually, Amy Bowman (of Lance and Amy), after I told her we were going to do air guitar, called out to CJ (their little boy who loves Silas- peas in a pod) "do NOT jump off the chairs today". The girls just kind of stood there, prettily strumming their guitars. Little Isabella really did not want to make a guitar, so she cut out a big heart and played that. When the others told her she didn't do it right she responded (very loftily), "this is the way I wanted it", followed by a toss of her head.
It was very fun. The kids loved it and there was far less mess. And yes, I air guitared, too. Did you have any doubts?

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Paper Ma-What?

I've decided that since I have not prepared to teach my class tomorrow, and since Co-op is going to last one week longer than I had planned (they have not increased it, I just don't check stuff) that I'm going to do paper mache.

Crickets are chirping.

In my head.
I have not done paper mache since 3rd grade with an incredibly cool art teacher. So I'm pretty sure that I remember how to do it. Maybe. Actually, I have no clue and I'm really nervous about it, but it's just gloppy stuff and newspaper, right? (more crickets) RIGHT?

I'm planning on blowing up balloons and covering the balloons with the paper mache stuff tomorrow. Next week, we'll paint the balloons and let them dry. Week three (last week in co-op) we'll cut a hold in the paper mache balloon and stretch different widths of rubber bands around it to make a kind of guitar thingy. The rubber bands will be held in place with a piece of paper mache stuff which I will put on after the kids are finished the first week. When it dries, I will cut niches in it so that it makes little ridges (kind of the way the strings are held in place on a guitar).

So, do I sound like a maroon? Any suggestions?

Jack Handey - A Scarier Skeleton

Love me some Jack Handey...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Marshmellows and Monsters!



Had a Fab-u-lous time at our community group bonfire on Sunday night. It was so fun!

We made Monster Pizzas yesterday. This is so super easy to do, if you get the hankering (yeah, I know I'm from Florida- I just like to throw in an Alabama word from time to time). I used the Jiffy Pizza Crust kit (only .38 each). I used five packages and then split up the dough to make 13 balls (one for each kid and one for each Momma). You certainly could use tortillas as the pizza dough, too! We added pizza sauce and mozzerella and then let the kids go to town with the toppings. Different color peppers are great; we also used mushrooms, pimentos, black olives, and corn. The kids had a blast! I did forget to put flour on the working surface (wax paper) and so we had a hard time getting the pizzas off. Hard time meaning: totally destroying most of the pizzas and having to reconstruct them on the cookie sheets. Then we added more cheese to disguise what we destroyed. Cook your pizzas in a 425 degree oven for 10-15 minutes (probably less time for tortilla pizzas) and then enjoy!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Spiritual Mothering...

My mother, in her wisdom, saw that it would be beneficial to both her and me if other women were involved in mine and my sister's lives. My aunts and my grandmothers were huge role models for me and I looked to them and my mother for leadership and guidance. Since I was an obnoxious teenager this was done more by observing them in their various roles. Now that I'm grown I see the wisdom in the way this works. Women were never meant to do things by themselves. We are told otherwise in our society. Look good, be great at whatever you do (mothering, working, cooking, cleaning, being a wife, and, oh yeah, juggling church, sports, PTA, diets, exercise, and your relationship with God- for brownie points), and if you do not do these things then you hide it behind a well-timed wink and a smile; or the mask. Push it down. Swallow another mouthful of guilt and keep on ticking. I am convinced many women are in agony under various forms of eating disorders, guilt, and a central feeling of complete desperation and desolation.

Our retreat this weekend was about Spiritual Mothering; or when an older woman takes a younger woman under her wing. She encourages her in the gospel with every facet of her life. Not with guilt, but with gentle encouragement to give her the confidence to be able to teach others the gospel and to be able to do ministry in the church. I have many spiritual mothers, some of which are only two years older than me. These women have quietly given me the confidence to be able to live the gospel throughout my life. They help me parent my children, they encourage me to love my husband, and they light a fire in me to know the Word. I watch them tirelessly, not only in admiration, but also encouraged that they are not perfect. They sin and have faults, but still live in the gospel. They have lost family members and friends and glorify God in their grief. They hung up their masks long ago and enjoy their freedom of being in Christ with no guilt. There is no false spirituality; why would it be false when there is no one to impress? I am a Princess of the King (Jenny Bartz phraseology) and with Him I need no falseness. He loves me because I am His child. I am nothing without Him; life would be completely meaningless. These spiritual mothers have helped me understand that and have encouraged me in the faith.

I encourage you to be frank. Be honest about your sin. Talk about your struggles. Be realistic with others. Create a safe place; a community of believers who actually love each other and know each other, even with their sin. The gospel is for the hopeless! When I was 27 years old, I honestly thought I would not make real adult women relationships. The mask was firmly in place and I was quietly despairing. Now the gospel has shattered the mask and other believers have shown me a true confidence in my identity.

What is the chief end of man? To glorify God and know Him forever. Praise His name forever!

CPC Women's Retreat... Stayed tuned for more...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

I'm up early this morning. It's nice to sit on the couch by myself and do nothing. Aaaah....

Today is Thursday and therefore: CRAZY. I don't know why Thursdays are that way. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that I procrastinate on everything I know to procrastinate against and have, again, waited to the last minute to do everything. Yes, I believe that's it. I tell myself that "I work better under pressure", but I also don't get as much sleep under pressure, I worry about getting everything done when under pressure, and I totally lose conciousness when I eat under pressure (picture me with a half gallon of ice cream and a big spoon and a big look of surprise on my face).

Things to look forward to:

1. Tonight is our spooky reading. "The Tell-tale Heart" by Edgar Allen Poe read by Glenn Beck. It's really good.
2. Tomorrow-after co-op which I have not prepared for yet: EEK- is when I leave for our women's retreat. It will be so great.
3. Sunday night Community Groups: Bonfire, marshmellows, hotdogs and singing around the fire. How very Octobery.
4. My parents are coming next week to spend 4 days with us. Silas asks everyday "Momma, how many days until Grandma and Papaw come?" Of course, this is followed by: "Momma, how many days til we go Trick or Treating?" or, "Momma I'm gonna be a robber for Halloween, right?" or, "Momma, who's coming over today?" Ding. That's what I always say to Silas after he asks questions. He smiles so big that I imagine his smile dinging a bell. He likes to ask questions. The same ones. Over and over. A-hem.
5. Reformation Celebration at our church on the 31st.
6. Dressing up and trick or treating.
7. The last soccer game is on the first Saturday in November.
8. The last co-op for the semester is on the first Friday in November.
9. Christmas Bazaar at our church on November 10th. BTW- if you would like a booth for anything you make or would like to sell let me know. There is no registration fee. We need more people. I'm responsible for finding them. Help me.
10. November 11th: Leaving for Florida for two weeks. This is especially exciting for me because when I leave to go to Florida, everything that has been crowded on my plate will be done. With the exception of the Christmas program, but even that will be delegated out and I will be able to enjoy going home for Thanksgiving.
11. My sister is following me back up here with her four kids to spend time up here while her husband takes his finals for law school. I'm so excited about this. I will get to spend FOUR WEEKS with my sister. It will be so fun.

Today is first... we actually have a Sock Hop today with the homeschool group. The boys are easy to dress up for the 50's and I'm trying to look like June Cleaver. We'll see how that goes. If I succeed I'll post pictures. Ta ta for now!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Weird Things at My House

My children are sitting on the couch watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown". (Another weird October thing that we must do. I actually had to buy the DVD because we don't have a working VHS anymore. Had being the key word for my OCDness. I have it practically memorized). Felix's eyes are glazed over with illness and he looks just about as pathetic as he can. I am sitting on the couch, blogging (duh) and thinking about how strange things have been around here in the past couple of weeks. We have had infestations of different creatures.

This occurred to me today when I went to go get Corin some quarters out of our big money jar in our room. It's just an empty water cooler container. We've kept money in it forever. Anyway, I dumped the change on the ground and picked up a couple of quarters. They are nasty sticky and covered with little black things. What in the world? I pick up some more and it occurs to me that the little black things are dead fruit flies stuck all over the change. We've had fruit flies in our room for a few weeks now and I could not figure out where they were coming from. Alas, mystery solved. I guess Felix poured juice in the container a WHILE back. So gross. I soaked the money in bleach water and cleaned out the container with bleach water. He is the king of gross. He's been sick for a few days now and we first noticed he was sick when he threw up phlegm into his Sonic Blue Coconut Slushy and then continued to drink it. Blech! Quinn and I didn't notice until hours later. Double blech!

Our second infestation was something I had never heard of before. Last week when my in-laws came I noticed, not for the first time, that moths were flying out of my pantry everytime I opened the door. I really hadn't paid any attention to it because they were moths. Who cares? And then I heard Laura Morgan talk about getting rid of meal moths. Uh oh, that doesn't sound good. So I call her (about an hour before my in-laws arrived) to ask how someone were to know they had meal moths. Yep, I had meal moths. I found an old baby cereal box in the back of the pantry that was completely infested with meal moth maggots (lots of maggots in my life lately). So I completely cleaned out the pantry and sprayed it with Lysol and wiped everything down with a cleaner and towel. Had to throw away a bunch of food. Doggonnit, I hate to waste food. But I did have a moth-free pantry. For three days. Now I'm seeing moths again. I keep thinking "surely this is the last moth- I'll just kill it and we'll be done". It's been a week and a half and I've killed a lot of moths, and I feel pretty sure I'm going to have to do the whole cleaning process over again. Ugh.

Two weeks ago, we had an infestation of fire ants. How did they even get in the house? I have no idea.

Why the creatures? I have no idea and they sure are making my life a lot more complicated. Today has been tiresome because Felix is ill and grouchy and coughy and pretty miserable. I've been thrown up on three times in the last 24 hours with phlegm. This morning it was right before I curled my freshly washed hair. Nice. The thing is, I didn't even rewash it. I just rinsed out the nasty parts and let it dry. Double nice. I'm tired of chores today. And tired of a whiny two year old who wants to go outside and ride his bike. I sure do hope he sleeps tonight. Hello Benadryll and Mucinex.

Good grief, did I just see a flea jump off my couch? NOOOOO!

Monday, October 15, 2007

10 (or 16) interesting things I want to tell you about me:

1. I love lists. I rarely make them actually, but I love to check things off. Check.
2. I pretend that I can do ballet. At any given moment. I think I'm good. Look for me in the nutcracker this year. That is, my own made-up nutcracker. When I was at Southeastern, I remember one year that a bunch of us went to the Nutcracker (did this happen, tell me if I'm dreaming) and Rachel Cook couldn't go with us. So Michelle Darling and Missy thought it would be brilliant if we did the Buttcracker Ballet for her as a surprise. Malena and I were the evil buttcrackers who were trying to take the saltine crackers out of Michelle's butt. (I can hardly type this because I'm laughing so hard). Missy and Michelle defeated me and Malena. It was hysterical.
3. I was on the cover of Florida Magazine when I was eight. I had eighties barrettes in my hair.
It was taken on a story day at Pershing Elementary School and I looked completely enthralled in the story. (I was, too).
4. Missy and I used to pretend that we were the Black-Eyed Pea Adventure Cops. We had a uniform (jeans, t-shirt, and a flannel shirt either worn or tied around our waists) and we did all kinds of things. Our names were (still are) Orchid (me) and Petunia.
5. I can rollerskate pretty good. Even backwards.
6. I immediately pluck any gray hairs out of my head that I see. You know, cause that will help.
7. I, like Page Dollar, am obsessed with Lord of the Dance. I want to watch it with her and try to dance like they do.
8. I thoroughly enjoy playing evil people in a play. My favorite was playing the Wicked Witch of the West in the Wizard of Aid at Southeastern. I got to fly on a vacuum cleaner. Not as easy as it sounds.
9. I love to watch TLC's "What Not To Wear". I always think of people to nominate. Not really. Okay, I do.
10. My baby toe on my left foot pops out of joint periodically. It's pretty painful. I have gotten used to it though and can pop it back into place myself. However, it wasn't always so. I would cry for days and couldn't walk. My poor family. At FBC I remember it popping out of place and me banging on Missy's door sobbing and begging for her to help me. Hello drama queen.
11. I enjoy watching reruns of "Saved by the Bell". You know you like it!
12. I love getting dressed up and wearing high heels. I feel pretty. Oh so pretty. I feel pretty, witty, and gay...
13. I love to watch Quinn doing an Adam Sandler Halloween impression. "Hello, I have a hand for a goatee... give me some candy." It's very funny.
14. I long to be 5'7. I will wear any shoes to make me look 5'7. Magic number I guess.
15. I know a lot about serial killers. I'll make inappropriate comments about them at various times and places. I always get the same look of creeped out and "ookkaaaay...." from the people I'm telling about said serial killers. Ann Rule is my favorite serial killer author. She worked with Ted Bundy at a suicide prevention hotline.
16. I know a lot of useless information but I'm really bad at Trivial Pursuit.

We need to have a blog party. I propose at Abbey's house.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Story of the Pumpkin Patch

Earlier this week I asked my favorite husband if he wanted to maybe venture to a pumpkin patch this weekend. He is in Seminary (in case you didn't know) and we have been in a whirlwind of craziness. He agreed and we decided that today would be the day. I am a natural cheerleader. If we are going to go somewhere and I will build it up like crazy. Woo hoo! Pumpkin Patch time! The kids were so excited. I had to finally threaten Silas so that he would stop asking me if we were going to get two pumpkins. Felix woke up this morning at 5:30 AM, came into our bedroom and banged my leg, saying "Puckin Patch, Mama! Puckin Patch!" Yes, today was the day.
Well, we had soccer games this morning, which inevitably run late and we had a church supper tonight. So we had to squeeze Pumpkin Patch Activity in between our other stuff we had going on. No problem. I knew we'd only spend about an hour at the pumpkin patch so I thought we'd be good on time. We trek on out to Old Baker's Farm, which is in Harpersville: about forty-five minutes from Moody. We pull in and park and everybody gets out, cheering for the pumpkin patch.
Then we stop dead in our tracks at the entrance. It costs $9 a head to walk in (that does include your pumpkin- thanks). That's $45 for a party of five, in case you need assistance with the math. Quinn and I just stand there, dumfounded. We literally just stood there for two minutes saying "$9 a head? Really? That's crazy". The kids are paying no attention to us, just jumping up and down, pointing at stuff and general excitement ensues. Felix is screaming "Puckin Patch! Puckin Patch! C'mon Mama!". I had $20 cash for today, thinking that would be more than enough for two pumpkins and maybe a treat. Quinn had $10. I looked at him and asked what should we do. He asked if I had a check.
So we paid it - with a check. I felt like we had to. We had made such a big deal and then drove all the way out there. I felt like an idiot because I never called and checked it out, or looked online for that matter. I really just didn't think about it. In years past we went to the one in Hayden and it was just so far away, and I thought that one was too expensive (they nickel and dime you to death out there, but at least you can choose what you want to do).
The boys had a great time. Quinn and I grumbled about the price the whole time to each other and I felt guilty about spending so much money. ON PUMPKINS! We did get the best pumpkins in the patch. I would've taken a picture of all the kids with our pumpkins that we chose, but my camera battery died when we were picking out pumpkins. Very annoyed.
We left after an hour and fifteen minutes and did find a faster way home that was very pretty. And we did have a great time as a family. And I did get cute pictures of the baby on his first time to the pumpkin patch. All in all, a great day. Just annoyed about the money. Live and learn, right?

At the Pumpkin Patch... Story Later!

Friday, October 12, 2007



Craft day at Paige's house

We decided to get together on Tuesday for a craft day. I'm not very crafty, so when other people decide to host something like that, I'm way on board. We go to Paige's house and she has got these great ideas all ready for us. We started studying Jackson Pollock in school. He was an abstract artist who was popular in the 40's and 50's who used a lot of dripping and throwing of paint as his medium. Pretty cool. We did marbles dipped in paint and then allowed the children to roll the marbles around on a piece of paper to achieve a similiar effect. Some of them actually looked very similiar to Mr. Pollock's! I was very pleased with the effects. I think I'm actually going to frame Corin and Silas' paintings. So then we melted crayons (that Paige had shaved earlier) between two sheets of wax paper to make light catchers. They are supposed to be leaf light catchers, but they kinda looked like mushroom light catchers to me. Who cares? They are taped in my kitchen window. And THEN we decorated our sugar cookies that we made with a pumpkin-shaped cookie cutter. Yumness. Fun craft day. I'm glad Paige and Heather know crafts. It's rare that we do stuff like that in my house. Too lazy. Don't be thinking I'm not gonna call them next Tuesday when we're bored!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

A Favorite Halloween Memory


It was a dark and stormy night. Alright, not really, but I was in Philidelphia and it was cold. Thanks to my Dad working for Delta Airlines, I got to travel for free a lot in college. I actually remember finding out I could travel for free. Conversation went something like this at the age of eighteen:
"So, Daddy how much would it cost for me to go to somewhere on a plane by myself?"
Daddy replies, "Well, You and your sister technically get three free flights a year until your 23 years old or you get married."
Eyebrows raised and mouth opened by eighteen year old daughter. "Are you serious? By myself?"
"Yeeeeeeesss," oooh, he was hesitant, "but it is stand-by flying and you would have less priority than paying customers."
Really all I heard was free. "Can I pick where I want to go?"
His eyebrows go up, amused. "Well, I guess so. Within reason."
"Can I go to Europe?"
"No." Darn.
So I got to travel a bit in college. Very fun. By the time I had moved to Alabama I was 21, almost 22. That Halloween, I decided to fly to Philadelphia to see my old friend, Ryan. I love Philadelphia. It's great to sightsee there and there is always somewhere fabulous to eat. I had been wanting to go to Philly for Halloween to see the PhilHarmonic Orchestra do there big Halloween thing. I've never seen it, but I hear they all dress up in costumes and have this great concert. It was sold out that year. I was disappointed, but if there was one thing Ryan knew how to do, it was have lots of fun. He told me about how he had heard of this old place in Lancaster that did Edgar Allen Poe readings or something on Halloween. Lancaster was not close, but I did not care. So a group of us trooped over there and eventually pulled in this mansion parking lot. Wow. Gorgeous. And a little spooky. The mansion used to be a livable house, but now was a public winery that would house special events. We went into the house where we were welcomed by the Bronte sisters (yep, Charlotte and Emily) and escorted to a room. It was a night to honor Edgar Allen Poe (it was Halloween, after all) and the Bronte sisters, Mark Twain, Mary Shelley, and Edgar Allen Poe were all there to read his stories. It was fantastic. You would go into different rooms at different times and someone would read one of his stories or poems. My favorite was one of the Bronte sisters reading "The Cask of Amontillado". She had a brick and a mortar scraper thingy (yeah, I don't know what it's called) and would scrape the brick while she quoted the entire story. Very chilling. You could almost feel how damp and cold the cellar was and hear the sound of the bricks being laid to wall in a drunken nemesis. It was, as Anne of Green Gables would say, deliciously scary.
I don't remember anything else about that trip, except that it was cold and I didn't have enough cold clothes to wear.
I have my own Edgar Allen Poe traditions now. For the second year now, a group of us get together on Thursday nights in October at eight o'clock and read something by him to the kids. Actually, last week we read "The Spider and the Fly" by Mary Howitt, which has the most fabulous illustrations by Tony Diterlizzi (check it out), but tonight it will be "The Raven". And next week will be "The Tell-Tale Heart", my absolute favorite by Poe. I have this great reading of it by Glenn Beck (the CNN guy) and it is so scary. The first time I heard it was about three years ago on the radio and I stood completely still until it was finished. It is GOOD! A little too scary for the little ones, so they'll have a funny story next week in the house. " The Tell-tale Heart" will be heard outside, in pitch dark. Last year, it was raining and chilly. What will it be like this year? Wanna come?

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

COMMUNITY GROUPS



I've grown to really love Community Groups at our church. It's been great to get to know new people and people who I don't see very often, as well as old friends. I took my camera on Sunday night to our group meeting, hosted by the Davis', and snapped some fun pictures of the kids playing and our absolute failure at making marshmellow ghosts. SOMEBODY (I won't say WHO -Paige Mitchell) burnt the white chocolate. Much laughing and good times followed in the kitchen. And maybe we made fun of the burner of chocolate a little. What you are supposed to do is slide three marshmellows on a popsicle stick and dip it in melted white chocolate and add chocolate chips or raisins as eyes. The kids didn't know there was supposed to be white chocolate and they were excited to just slide marshmellows on a stick and smoosh chocolate chips into their marshmellows to make ghost eyes. Thus ensued marshmellow ghosty guys. Minus the white chocolate. Ahem.
There are also pictures of the second attempt at caramel apples, which was slightly less successful than the first attempt, mostly because I added too much water to the caramel (see, it's not just you Paige). VERY messy. This was not done at Community Group, but was done with a couple of friends from Community Group at our house.
One thing I love about our church is the concentration of the gospel in every aspect of our lives. It has changed the way I think, and when I forget, there is a good friend to remind me who I am because of the gospel. There is freedom in the gospel and not guilt. Of course, I am guilty of sin which is why I need the gospel in the first place, but I'm talking about the guilt of a believer after they are saved. Constant guilt - not doing enough, not reading my Bible enough, try harder... do better, blah, blah, blah... I am not enough by myself - PERIOD. I am Christ's child and He loves me. There is a work He is completing in me. I will live the gospel through my life. This kind of philosophy filters down into my everyday life and not just churchy stuff. The freedom of the gospel allows me to trust women in the church to actually help me raise my children and to have friends I would never have allowed myself to have because of our culture's insistence on the perfection of the "mask". I love that I can be real. Community Groups has been another extension of our church and the outreaching of the gospel. My church family is exactly that. I'm so thankful.

Sunday, October 07, 2007



My in-laws came on Friday to see us on and stayed on Saturday so that they could watch the boys' soccer games. We had such a great time and Jason and Michelle Little came out to join us with the girls (minus Brittney, who was working). It was so nice to be with family for the whole day. After Dick and Linda left, we went over to the Little's for dinner (steak, mmm) and conversation. It was so good. I wish we could see family more often. Sigh... My heart was full by the end of the day.

Friday, October 05, 2007

FOUND IT!

I tore apart the washer yesterday. I was convinced the jersey was there. It wasn't. I tore apart the boys' room. (Again) I cleaned it very well. Wasn't there. Crissy came over and helped me look. Went to Maja's van and looked. Nope. Half-heartedly looked in the big garbage can outside. Saw maggotts. Nevermind. Talked to the coach. No extra jerseys. Oh well, I guess it doesn't matter.

This morning I woke up and got up and checked my e-mail and my blog. Saw several comments about a two-year old and trash. I decided to re-check the big outside garbage can before I took it to the curb - maggots or no maggots. I took out all the garbage bags, trying to ignore the maggots. And at the very bottom, underneath maggots and nasty old food, I saw a flash of green. I tore open the side of the bag and Voila! There it was! Woo hoo! Mommy saves the day! Thanks for the advice friends!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

MISSING: Green Soccer Jersey

Corin's soccer jersey is missing. Not just missing, but gone. The trolls have taken it far away. Why am I blogging about it? Because it's driving me nuts! I noticed that it was not in the laundry on Sunday and so I started looking it for it then. No big deal, his game is a week away. Monday I still couldn't find it, and started looking in less obvious places. Tuesday, Quinn and I moved couches and looked under the piano (don't ask me how it couldv'e gotten under the piano). I just sat and thought of all the places it could be. Tuesday night I woke up in the middle of the night (wide awake) and thought: "it's in some clothes that I washed". So Wednesday morning, I went through all the drawers in the house and took out clothes to see if it had somehow gotten dried in somebody's jeans or something. Nothing. I also have, by now, virtually torn the whole house upside down and shaken it. I sent the head guy over kids' soccer an e-mail, asking if there were extra jerseys. Yeah, so that he can think, "okay, lady, it's just one jersey, how did you lose that?". I haven't heard back from him yet. I have spent FOUR days looking for this thing. How can it be missing? I saw him take it off and throw it on the floor, where he was then instructed to take it to the hallway where laundry was waiting to be washed. We have grandparents coming to watch games and I've yet to take pictures of him with his team. My motherly righteousness is on the line! It is supposed to be clean, smelling of Tide and ready in his drawer by now.
This is not part of the October plan! I'm not supposed to spend days looking for a jersey, I'm supposed to be planning fun things to do! And I know what you're thinking. Calm down! It's not that big of a deal. Well, sure it's not, but it SO is. Especially since it is consuming 90% of my thoughts. WHERE IS IT? WHERE IS IT? WHERE IS IT?
What you are supposed to be imagining right now is me, standing on a table-coffee or dining- with my hair crazy and my fist in the air. I feel like I'm an old-time movie crazy lady. They always made them have big hair and crazy looking eyes. "I'm ready for my close-up,dahling." Okay, I'm getting down now.

If the trolls have brought this jersey to your house, please contact me. Otherwise, I guess I'll just have to get over it. That might not be a bad idea anyway.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Verbal Diarrhea strikes!

Can you say verbal diarrhea? Oh, I can. Unfortunately, I am so aware of this disease and have decided that I need to bring awareness to the world so that you can know if you have it.

Do you, when feeling uncomfortable, start talking and can't stop?

Do you, especially around others, know that the previous is happening and literally start panicking over the things you are saying?

Do you, in your panic, start backtracking and end up sounding a little bit more crazy with each passing second?

Do you, with crazy eyes, secretly beg people to not think you are crazy and then they tell you that you are not crazy so that you will get out of their house?

Do you replay the conversation over and over in your mind, trying to make it not true? And then does it get worse when you replay it?

Do you lose sleep over the conversation and worry about it for weeks?

Do you cringe in remembrance of the conversation?

Does the thought of actually seeing the people who you have had said conversation with make your heart beat faster and make you feel like you would rather eat worms and die?

If any of these things have happened to you, then I'm afraid that you have VD (not venereal disease- not even going there). I would suggest you get help, but I'm afraid that doctors are not taking this disease seriously. We must raise awareness of this issue! Call your closest friend and tell her she must stand with you at all times and kick you periodically in the butt to get your attention when you start talking too much. Otherwise, there's not much hope. Call your local senator today!

Monday, October 01, 2007


October is Here!

Simply put, I love October! I have loved this month since I was a little girl; really almost favored it above my birthday. I love the slight nip in the air and the coloring leaves; the pumpkins you see everywhere at fruitstands, and the sudden urge to make something cinnaminy (it's a word) in the kitchen. I'm not a crafty person, but in October, the Brenda (my mother) comes out in me and I'm the most fun mom in the world. Pumpkin shaped sugar cookies are traditions in our house in October as well as roasting pumpkin seeds after carving our Jack-o-Lantern, which we will research our favorite face for two weeks before we actually carve our victim pumpkin. We also will check out a book on custumes and look into making our costumes for the big night. Last year, Corin was an Indian, Silas was Robin Hood, and Felix was a lion (I did not make Felix's costume- Crissy Sharp lent me Brody's old costume). I was Red Riding Hood, Anne of Green Gables, and on any given day in October, spooky lady with black shirt and overdone black eyeliner.

Why the love? My sister's birthday is in October, about a week before Halloween, and her birthday parties when we were children were Halloween themed, you know, black and orange balloons and chocolate cake with candy corn. There were a couple of years that we had a Halloween party in the garage with dunking for apples, costumes, and a giant stuffed man sitting on a lawn chair. I was a witch (before it became politically incorrect for Christians) for several years in a row, a costume my mother made and I remember her painting a star on one cheek and a moon on the other. My sister was always a princess with this fabulous pointed cone hat with this pink chiffony thing coming out the back. I remember one year that my sister and I were waiting at the corner of our street waiting for people to start coming to the party when a large black woman starting waving at us from a block away and calling our names. My sister and I looked at each frantically and started sprinting to our house. We breathlessly told our mother what happened and she smiled a half smile and said "really?". While we watched, the woman rounded the corner and walked the short distance to our house, calling our names. It was my grandmother, dressed as a perfect replica of Aunt Jemima. I was a little nervous of her the whole night. We were never really allowed to go to a lot of houses for trick or treating, but one year I remember going to Southern Oaks (THE neighborhood to trick or treat in, rumored to give regular-sized candy bars) and trick or treating with my Aunt Cheryl and my mom, with my cousins and sister. So fun. November 1st was always a let down for me, much the same way as December 26th is. As I got older, I still loved dressing up (I was a punk rocker chick when I was 12-1987, a ghost bride when I was 14, and a Star Trek chick when I was in college) and I dress up with my kids now, enduring much teasing from my husband. Tease away!

I had October planned for school before September and plan to study Edgar Allen Poe and Martin Luther, talk about Edvard Grieg, go to the Pumpkin Patch and Boo at the Zoo, and cook up spooky looking, fun things to eat. Monster Pizzas, finger hotdogs with real-looking fingernails, vomit dip, potion punch, and spider cupcakes are all fun things to make. Recipes to come on a later post. It's gonna be great. Let the fun begin!