Monday, June 30, 2008

The Test

I left for the interview (or so I thought) at 9:42am, giving me 18 minutes to get to the school and was eight minutes early. Can't be too early, right? I walk into the school office (side note- I always feel like I'm about to be in big trouble in any school office) and stood at the counter nervously. A big man, whom I recognized as NOT the principal, came into the office and told me he was Nate. Um, hello Nate. He told me the principal had to run an errand, but she would be back soon and was I there to take the test? I answered in the affirmative and he pointed me to a place behind the counter where there was a test booklet (gulp), bubble sheets (gulp again), and two #2 pencils. Thank you, Nate. I saw down at the desk and gazed in horror at the title of the test booklet. Stanford Achievement Test.

Yes, Ladies and Gentlemen. The SAT. I think I looked and blinked at the book for a full minute. I was told that I would be taking a test to be an assistant to the Music Teacher. She told me the whole process would take about two hours. I (very stupidly) assumed that I would take some sort of test (not the SAT) and then have a chitty chat with the principal. Apparently, no.

After my initial shock wore away, I opened the book and started in. Ah, English. I love grammar and all things that involve Language Mechanics. Nerdy. I know. Reading Comprehension, Language Mechanics, Language Expression, Spelling, and writing a paragraph on a subject of my choosing. Easy, peasy pudding pie. Well, for the most part anyway. And then came the math. I was pleased to discover that I wasn't taking the ENTIRE SAT, but only certain sections of it. There was a basic skill test on math. You know, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and, ah, percentages. I totally blanked out on the percentage question. I completely forgot how to do it. FORGOT HOW TO DO IT. I sat there trying to figure the problem out, redoing it over and over, knowing that I wasn't coming up with the correct answer. After about 15 minutes, with nothing else to complete, I left it blank (I hate to leave spaces blank-no bubble to fill in on that one or I would've guessed) and packed up the papers and booklet. I sheepishly told the principal I had forgotten how to do percentages, which she laughed off and told me that I could miss six out of twenty on the math page. Thank goodness she had a sense of humor. I felt pretty dumb. She told me she would grade the test and call me tomorrow about an interview. Of course, this is pending that I'm not an idiot. Tomorrow. (By the way, "Tomorrow." is not a sentence. I did that for emphasis. Total artistic breaking of grammar rules. I did it on purpose. Just so you know.)

How could I forget how to do percentages? I shop all the time and KNOW how take %35 off a coveted jacket. I don't know. Brain cramp, I guess. I am still having trouble remembering. Perhaps I need to shop to feel better. Eh? I NEED to work on my math skills.

Today, Today

I got up and ran this morning with Andrea (my in-laws have the boys). I like having someone to run with. It makes the running so much more endurable. I enjoy the accountability and the conversation. She has trained for a marathon, which means she's way faster than me at a three mile jog. AND she rode her bike 5 miles to my house. A-HEM. Super wow. So now I feel exercised and caffeinated (I'm on my second cup of joe).

Today is my job interview and assistant test (????) at the elementary school. You read right. I heard about the job on Wednesday, dropped the application off on Thursday, and they called me Friday about an interview today. They haven't even gotten my reference forms back yet! I did click with the principal on Wednesday and she encouraged me to apply for the position. So, we'll see what happens. I have to admit, I'm quite nervous. I haven't had a job outside the home (except for a nightmarish two month stint at Cracker Barrell in 2004) since before my eldest was born. The job does include free, state benefits and I would have the leisure of being at the school for the boys. And I think I would enjoy the position. I would probably try to see what it would take for me to become certified as a teacher of music. Felix (my almost three-year old) is my concern. He loved Mother's Day Out last year and I think he would love "school" (as he puts it), but I would love for him to stay with a family. I do not know what will happen yet, nor what is even available at this point. I'm still pursuing the whole thing until, as I said before, it is unpursuable.

Quinn starts Greek today and he is a little nervous. Although, it is a little disconcerting that whenever you tell someone (former Greek students at RTS) that you are about to embark on Greek, they respond with wide-eyes and "oooooo". I would love to hear someone say, "That is so great. I love Greek. LOVE IT." I know that is a woman's response, but still. Pray for him as he starts. Greek and Hebrew will be his toughest classes this year and he wants to do well.

Today, TODAY is a big day for both of us. What shall I wear? I heard Quinn mumbling the same thing at 2am this morning about Greek. I'm guessing he'll wear cargo shorts and a t-shirt. Maybe he'll put on a polo or something. I, actually, am about to commence the wardrobe attack. I do LOVE to dress. I'll probably go conservative (didn't I hear you say that you wanted to know what I was wearing?) and do black dress slacks with black stilletos and my pink button down. I'm actually wearing it in the picture on the right. Maybe I'll throw on a black patent-leather belt. You know, for kicks. And just to say, "hey, I'm a little spunky". I think I'll just walk in (Broadway style) and throw up my arms and say, "Ta-dah! I'm here!" Man, I wish I knew how to tap dance. I'm guessing that that would make me look crazy and not "qualified" for the position.

Must commence commencing. Toodles y'all.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Another World (or two)

I've lived for the past few weeks (it seems) in another realm. Just before we moved to Jackson, I picked up Pride and Prejudice (the movie with Kierra Knightly) at a yard sale. I have tried (and tried) to read that book, but get frustrated (ah, bored) with the beginning (the conversation is TEDIOUS) and so I put it down. However, there are so many people that I know that love it, so I thought I'd give the movie a try and see if it had a good story and then maybe try again. I know that that is cheating and it's not my usual protocol (I usually read the book and scoff and condemn the movie to shreds), but I really wanted to see what the stupid thing was about. The movie is really good (in my usual OCD manner, I've seen the movie half a dozen times since we've moved here) and now I'm ready to try the book again. Love, LOVE me some Mr. Darcy. I do not know why my fascination is piqued about such books. Perhaps it is the style of dress, or maybe the lack of modernity that is so prevalent in our society. Perhaps it is the foreign protocol of men and women that we no longer live by. The heroic nature of the men and even the strength and quiet way of the women. It's not weakness, understand, but a mysterious quiet that evokes you to understand what they are about. I'm very interested in the protocol that we no longer live with. What women were "allowed" to do or say, and what a burden they were on their families if they didn't marry well. I would really not call myself a feminist by today's standards (or one of those crazy women you see who are radically obnoxious-I do not think all men stupid and irrelevant), but I cannot imagine living in a time where I was invisible. It is really almost confusing to me, that my ancestors lived by such rules.

Anyhoo, because I've seen this movie and had just finished some Anne of Green Gables books too (different era completely than Pride and Prejudice, but still another realm that I've never lived in), I was curious about some different kind of books. The other day, I went to the library and checked out Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The House of Seven Gables". Wow. He IS a little wordy (look who's talking), but incredibly perceptive of the reader and tells a great story. This book sets you in a completely different mindset. It is almost as if a mist has enveloped my person and I'm smelling the mildew of the house (of seven gables). I hear the footsteps on the stairs and I smell the ancient roses in the garden. I hear the whispers of ancestral grumblings and woes and experience the scowl of the mistress of the house. The book is about a family who's ancestors two hundred years prior (in the Puritan age) had participated, even condemned a wizard named Maul to death. Just before he died, he put a curse on the family who condemned him. Then, out of pride and arrogance, the great judge assumed the wizard's property has his own, knocked down his residence, and built his own great mansion atop of the dead man's family property. Thus follows pride, regret, remorse, audacity and, of course, the general feeling that the house is haunted. I love it.

Let me share with you something I found particularly relevant to me. The author is speaking about a man of primary importance in the book, Jaffrey Pyncheon, and his role as a judge. He is arrogant, but is regarded as an important personage in in the town where they live, treated with respect and dignity because of his title and reputation. Hawthorne states about his tendencies as an important figure:

... With these materials (speaking of wealth, real estate, and offices of trust), and with deeds of goodly aspect, done in the public eye, an individual of this class builds up, as it were, a tall and stately edifice, which, in the view of other people, and ultimately in his own view, is no other than the man's character, or the man himself. Behold, therefore, a palace! Its splendid halls and suites of spacious apartments, are floored with a mosaicwork of costly marble; its windows, the whole height of each room, admit the sunshine through the most transparent of plate glass; its high cornices are gilded, and its ceilings gorgeously painted; and a lofty dome...

So, yes, this man has built his reputation as a beautiful building, but alas:

...Ah, but in some low and obscure nook- some narrow closet on the ground floor, shut, locked , and bolted, and the key flung away; or beneath the marble pavement, in a stagnant water puddle, with the richest pattern of mosaicwork above- may lie a corpse, half decayed, and still decaying, and diffusing its death scent all through the palace! The inhabitant will not be conscious of it, for it has long been his daily breath! Neither will the visitors, for they smell only the rich odors which the master sedulously scatters through the palace...

Chills ran down my spine as I read it, not only because of the author's ability to explain his character, but because it hit so close to my own humble palace that hides so deep a corpse. We are all in need of redemption. We are kidding ourselves if we think we are good enough to not require it or to be able to acquire it by our own good merit. I love that Hawthorne hinted (screamed is more like it actually) at his own humanity. Good book. I will finish it in the morrow.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Things A'float in My Mental Boat

I just got back from a Mrs. in Ministry meeting. I'm really going to love going to that. I think I'm going to try to plan a game night next Tuesday at my house with some of the ladies. Can you say "Mexican Train"? CHOO CHOO!

Before my meeting (doesn't that sound important?), Quinn and I (with the boys) were invited over to Woodman and Scott's house for dinner. Woodman is my sister-in-law's sister-in-law and I love to say that. Say it three times fast. Wooh! That is soooo fun. Anyway, dinner was very good and I'm looking forward to getting to be better friends with Woodman. And maybe she'll help me with decorating ideas for my house, because she does a lot of her own decorating and it is impressive.

I dropped off an application today to be an assistant to the music teacher at Silas' elementary school. This avenue dropped in my lap yesterday, and so I'm pursuing it until it is no longer, uh, persuable. This is a huge deal, and I don't know what else to say about it right now.

I found a weird thing in the silverware drawer today. I do not know what it was, only that it kind of looked like a cross between a kidney bean and a bug with no arms, legs, antennae, or head. It totally freaked me out and I stood looking at it for a full five minutes, waiting for it to say "boo" or something. I eventually, after much encouraging coaching from myself ("it's okay- just take it to the big garbage can outside- it can't possibly get you- it has no head") snatched at it with a big paper towel and threw it in a cup and took it outside. Running. I nearly passed out. I'm okay now.

Quinn put training wheels on the little bike for Felix today. He's so excited to ride a bike like the big boys. Poor thing. He wants to be big so bad. "No momma, I not a bayba, I Beex." "No momma, I bigga now." I don't like it when he tells me he's not the bayba (pronounced Bay-bah). I do like it that he still calls me "momma doodah". I don't know where this came from, but it is sure cute. He's nearly three and I can't believe I don't have a baby in the house. Maybe later. I would love to have another baby (maybe two) someday. One big project at a time. Seminary is my baby right now. Goo goo.

My in-laws are coming on Sunday evening to take the boys until Thursday. Blink blink. Whatever will I do? Thursday, Quinn and I will drive to G'ma's for the fourth of July. Jason (Quinn's cousin) and Michelle will be there, as will Kerri (Quinn's sister) and Mitt (um, Woodman's brother and my brother-in-law), and Quinn's brother Chris. It will be a blast, as always, and we will be wall to wall people, which sounds horrible, but is actually great fun. I'm looking forward to it, as well as a wee vacation from the boys.

Perhaps I'll get the rest of the wallpaper peeled. Yeeeaaahhh, I'll probably not. I'm reading The House of the Seven Gables right now by Nathaniel Hawthorne. He's wordy with his descriptions, but I'm loving how spooky the book is. I might just have to finish reading and listen to creepy music. Mmmm, fun times for Kim. I may just throw in some Edgar Allen Poe for the heck of it. I highly recommend Poe for raising the hair on the back of your neck.

And on that note... go to bed.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

How to Have Fun In Jackson, MS

1. Wake up early (4am) to change the sheets of the baby's bed who wet it. Then allow him to kick you in your own bed until 6:15.

2. Get up and decide to go running before it's too hot.

3. At 7:30am, attempt to run and decide that you have to go running before 6am to not get hot.

4. Come home and tell the baby "no" to popsicles 15 times. Get him water instead so that he can pour it out somewhere else. On purpose.

5. Make husband breakfast (because that's the kind of wife you are) and then shower to get ready to go to the library, which was the original agenda for the day.

6. At 9:15, come out in kitchen with wet hair to get some yummy cherries, only to hear dearest of husbands say, "maybe we should get our Mississippi Driver's License today."

7. Gulp. Say expletive inwardly. Get out ironing board to iron a shirt and give him a look.

8. Groan inwardly as he tells you, "it doesn't matter that we have valid Alabama Driver's Licenses, we have to get a Mississippi license." Fine.

9. Dry and curl hair, put make-up on, and get dressed to go to the lovely Dept. of Public Safety. Then, remember that your Social Security Card is SOMEWHERE in the attic. The very hot attic.

10. Daringly mutter expletives out loud in the attic as you try to find the stinkin' card. In the attic.

11. Make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the children at 10:22 so that we don't have to stop for lunch.

12. At 11:10, (why does everything take so long to do?) load troops in the car and trek to downtown Jackson.

13. At 11:30, stop at Social Security office because hubby didn't know where his card was. (Where IS that card anyway?) Wait in lobby with no chairs and three boys for an hour while he gets a copy of his card from upstairs somewhere.

14. Head through more of downtown Jackson, which is cool, listening to Nickel Creek and laughing with your husband. This is very fun and one of the most enjoyable parts of the day.

15. At 12:45, find the Department of Transportation and get all of the children out, only to be told that you are looking for the Department of Public Safety, located a couple miles down the road.

16. 12:47: load troops back in car, asking the question, "why isn't the DMV located at the Department of Transportation?" Also, ask yourself, "Why are there so many government buildings in Jackson?", and "Why are they located all over the place?"

17. Answer the question, "Because it's the capital, smarty-pants."

18. At 12:55, pull into Department of Public Safety, enter the building with three hungry (sandwich has really done nothing), impatient boys and TAKE A NUMBER. We are numbers #88 and 89. Now serving #70. Not too, too bad.

19. Sit and wait. Sit and wait more. Watch numbers blink across screen with everybody else in the room. Remember that it took 15 minutes TOTAL to get your Driver's License last year in St. Clair county, Alabama. That includes parking and going to the bathroom, AND paying for new tags for both vehicles. And it was the best Driver's License picture EVER.

20. 1:35 Ding! #88!!!! Hop up lightning fast or they will call the next number.

21. 1:45 Finish up with nice DMV lady (Can you believe it, she even complimented how good the children were being!) and take your mediocre-pictured Driver's License and walk to the lobby to wait for hubby who was called just after you. Note that the number blinking on the screen has just turned to 96 and the last number on the Take a Number thing is 42. Be glad you got there when you did.

22. 1:52 Tell middle child to stop asking for a milkshake five times in a row.

23. 1:54 Tell middle child he is not ever going to get a milkshake, in his life, because he can't stop asking for it.

24. 1:56 Note that the baby is chewing gum. From where? Hopefully not the floor, next to the Chiclets gumball machine.

25. 2pm Hubby finishes up (his picture was good-unfair, he doesn't even care) and we head to load up.

26. 2:20 Pull into Sonic near our house to take advantage of the Happy Hour Half-Price Slushees. Why does yours taste like mothballs? Who knows. Decide not to throw it away because you're starving.

27. 2:45 Head to Gamestop to let eldest child spend birthday money.

28. 3:00 Head to Library to let children quietly check out books and sign up for the Summer Reading Program. (Or to let children run about like wild banshees while you sign the children up three weeks late for the Summer Reading Program). Check out Carol Burnett show and Little Women DVD's to watch without hubby, who will totally make fun of you.

29. 4:00 Head home to repeatedly tell the baby "no" to popsicles because he just had a slushee.

30. 4:30 Make dinner early. 5:00 Get children bathed early. Watch reruns of the Muppet Show (also at the library) with the children and hubby. 6:15 Hubby goes to bed early because he's very sleepy. 7:30 Children go to bed early because they are worn out.

8:10 Day is successfully over.
And now, after an exceedingly long day, which was actually pretty fun, why don't you polish off the rest of the chocolate mousse cake with cold, COLD whipped cream and watch the Carol Burnett show until you fall asleep on the couch.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Dining with Friends

Dinner went well (aren't you SO glad). I know you've been waiting on pins and needles. I used Angel Hair pasta instead of Fettuccine pasta because of dearest husband, who doesn't like Fettuccine as much as Angel Hair (he calls it big, chewy pasta). He liked it, but I thought it did better (held the sauce better) with the Fettuccine pasta. Live and Learn. The Chocolate Mousse Cake was my favorite part of the evening (dessert usually is). Have I ever done this recipe for you before? I'm too lazy to check so I will give it to you anyway.

Chocolate Mousse Cake

1 stick of butter (PLEASE don't use margarine- it would kill me)
7 ounces bittersweet chocolate (Ghirardelli bittersweet is my favorite)
2 tsp of water
2 tbsp of all purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs, room temp

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt butter, chocolate, and water together until smooth. Allow to cool. In separate bowl, stir together flour, sugar, and eggs. Pour flour mixture in with chocolate mixture. Pour into greased loaf pan. Set loaf pan in a 13x9 pan with 1 inch of water in the bottom of it. Bake in 400 degree oven for 40 minutes. Serve with fresh whipped cream (so much better than cool whip). To make fresh whipped cream: Pour lots of whipping cream in bowl, stir in about 2 tbsp powdered sugar, and beat with mixer until it looks like whipped cream. It's very easy. Enjoy. This is also one of my favorite things to make for company. It's cheap and it makes such a gorgeous presentation.

Melinda and Lincoln were fun to be with. Lincoln is one of the types of men that I'm easily intimidated of. He's quiet and thoughtful and seems very thorough about his life. I found myself thinking, before they came, about, "what stupid things are going to come out of my mouth tonight?" This is a very real fear of mine. Unfortunately, with Verbal Diarrhea (a disease I'm afflicted with that has no cure, btw), when one hangs out with someone who is quieter and more thoughtful, the more the person with VD (not venereal disease, perv) feels they must speak. It does not matter what you say, very unfortunately, as long as the words come spilling out of your mouth. I did have this fear tonight, as I was preparing the meal, but I need not have feared, because he laughed and seemed very human. Melinda has a great phlegmatic sense of humor and I enjoy being around her immensely. She did bring her fabulous bread, which she is most modest about, but I applauded and bravo ed her efforts. Out loud for all to hear, of course. I want to try and make it soon.

On a completely different note...
I've been thinking about the Nicene Creed lately, especially this line:

...God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

I think it's beautiful. And I feel that I should memorize the whole of it and stand on a mountaintop and say it into a valley with the echoes of it falling around me. God of God. Light of Light. How majestic.

And I speak of dinner. Life continues and He is the God of the Universe. How minute am I and He speaks. God of God. Light of Light.

I love the way it sounds.

Dinner Guests

We're having company tonight! Woo hoo! WOO HOO! I glory in company. I have the slightest suspicion that Quinn suggested inviting Lincoln and Melinda over to get me out of my slump. And perhaps to give me a leetle bit of motivation to really clean the house. No matter! It has lived on "tidying up" for three weeks. I'm taking a break right now from sweeping sheetrock dust out of the downstairs half-bath. It clouds up as I'm sweeping it and is everywhere. And I'm doing the laundry.

SO, the MENU:
I think we'll have a pasta recipe my mother made while she was here that was super delicious, healthy, and unique. I've asked Melinda to bring her delicious focacia bread and we'll have corn (because I've got it coming out my ears). I will make Chocolate Mousse Cake with fresh whipped cream for dessert because that's so simple and unbelievably good.
I must share with you the pasta recipe because I feel confident you will try to make it soon.

1 16oz package fettucine noodles
1 bag of baby spinach leaves
1 chopped onion
3-4 cloves of chopped garlic
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2-4 tablespoons of butter
2 cups parmesan (or more-depending on your preference)
your choice (and quantity) of meat (I'm using chicken tonight, but last week had it with shrimp which was delicious).

Saute onion with garlic with a couple tbsp of EVOO until onion is tender. Add cooked, chopped chicken to onion mixture and saute. Let sit. Boil fettucine noodles in water with salt and some EVOO until it's ready. DO NOT DRAIN. Get a big (BIG) bowl. Place butter in the bottom of bowl. With pasta scoop, get a couple of scoops of pasta and place in bowl on top of butter. Add some parmesan and a couple of handfuls of fresh spinach. Add a couple of spoonfuls of chicken mixture. Toss. Repeat layers until everything is added together. The water from the fettucine noodles, butter and olive oil from chicken mixture make a light sauce and the spinach wilts from the heat of the pasta and chicken. Yum, yum, yum. My dad does not like spinach and he loves this recipe. My children also gobbled up every bite and had seconds (Corin had four helpings).

I've got to get moving... Houses can't clean themselves, you know.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Lazy Sunday

Today has been a good day with my family. We watched the children play in the sprinkler (in lieu of baths, of course) after we had gone for a walk in the neighborhood. This morning we went to Providence Presbyterian which is two, (count 'em) 2 minutes away from the house. It's too soon to know where we will decide to attend except that my hubby LOVES Redeemer Pres, which is about 25 minutes away. I like Redeemer too, except that it's 25 minutes away. Redeemer is unique in the fact that it is one of those rare, racially diverse churches. It has a beautiful harmony about it and the pastor is eloquent and relevant. Providence was conservative (a lot of liturgy and choral music) and the people were very friendly. And it was TWO MINUTES AWAY from our house. I actually remembered that I had forgotten to turn on my oven this morning during Sunday School and so I excused myself and drove home, turned on the oven, and drove back and was seated by my husband exactly 10 minutes later. Impressive, no? When we got home from church, the smell of roasted chicken wafted under our noses. After lunch, we all laid down and I fell asleep for nearly two hours. That NEVER happens. It was nice.

I did have some tears today. First, I miss my church. I miss Burt and Steve. I miss my friends. I miss the music at Community. I guess nobody has a violin, cello, guitars, conga drums, and mandolin in their church music. Secondly, after my nap, I kept thinking that I just wanted to walk up to my Maja's or Anita's and see what they were doing and perhaps have a cup of coffee over some lovely conversation. I almost drove over to the married housing townhouses to just see what people were doing, but thought that might look a little desperate. Well, I AM desperate to have some bosom friends. And to have a church that we attend. I've kind of prepared myself to know that the summer (maybe longer) will be spent visiting churches and deciding where to attend.

My house is quiet now. I'm listening to the Shins and am contemplating laundry. Perhaps I will sleep on the contemplation of laundry. I must, MUST get grades done for Corin. I need to register both of the older boys for school soon. Back to the grind.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I've Decided...

I've decided that my kitchen likes to be messy. It told me so. Why would it not want to be messy? My children love being caked with dirt. Why would my kitchen counters not want to be caked with concreted grits and sticky with honey? Don't talk to me about roaches. Roaches smoaches. If I can't get concreted grits off of the counter, then how can they? Live and let live, right? Yeah, yeah, GROSS, I know.

I've decided that cutting corn off of hundreds of cobs is hard work. If you, by chance, come to Grandma's anytime for the next year and eat corn and I am with you, then, please know, I will announce to you and everyone at the table that I may have actually cut the corn you may be currently eating off the cob in June of 2008. Now, if my mother-in-law, father-in-law, or G'ma are at the table, then it MAY have been them, too. So, I may (maybe) shut-up and not say anything, except for, "do you like the corn?" and then smile to myself. There were 500 ears of corn pulled from their stalks today. I brought home a dozen ears and 6 boxes of frozen corn that were previously shucked and cut from the cobs. Good stuff. This summer, since we do live closer to Quinn's Grandma and Papa, I would like to learn how to can, make jelly from Muscadine Grapes that grow on a vine in their garden, relearn how to shell peas, and garden in general, since I am a general idiot about those things. It just seems so responsible to do. Who votes for being responsible? Um, me, didn't I make that clear? Are you not impressed by the very idea of me learning new things? Do you think I spend too much time at the computer? For shame...

I've decided to teach my cat how to clean. She's very smart AND she can do tricks. Like: meow when her food is two hours old that, in fact, her food is two hours old and MUST be changed. NOW (meowing, of course). More tricks? Um... Her other tricks are far too numerous to recount.

I've decided I want to eat all the frosting from a leftover cake. Nobody will notice and I will be the only one who feels sick tomorrow. Except that the guilt from eating the frosting is actually more overwhelming than the sick tummy that will come later. It is very good, though. Perhaps I should post the recipe. Only if you repent from the "too much computer" comment (the very idea). Very well, here is the delicious recipe:

Marshmellow Fudge Frosting:
1 stick butter
2 tbsp baking cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups mini marshmellows
6 tbsp milk
1 pound of powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Melt butter and cocoa in saucepan over low heat. Add marshmellows and heat until melted, stirring to blend well. Remove from heat and stir in the milk, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Pour over warm cake.
There is a cake recipe that goes with this frosting, but, quite honestly, a cake mix does just as well. Quinn loves it with yellow cake. Just poke holes in the cake after it's finished baking (13x9 pan) and then pour the warm icing over the cake. Slice cake immediately after pouring the icing, so that the icing can slide down the slices. Yummy.

My pour husband went to bed at 6:45 with a slight fever and a general sick feeling. Pour thing. I hope we're not all in for a round of illness. I actually keep looking at the clock, trying to will it to 8:00 so that I can go to bed with the children. I'm sleepy, too.

We're supposed to visit a new PCA (Presbyterian Church in America) church tomorrow. It's very close to our house and I'm excited to visit. We'll see how the man (the man being hubbo) is in the morning.

I've decided I've yawned too many times and it's time to read to the children (7pm), so that bedtime is close. If my children go to bed now, then they will rise at 5:30am. And yet I'm sleepy. SLEEPY.


Friday, June 20, 2008


I have a cramp in my left calf. I can feel a little ball of cramp-i-ness in my muscle. I went running and it happened when I was running. I came home and Quinn told me to eat a banana. No banana at my house. So I decided to eat a great big bowl of spinach leaves, blueberries, a scrambled egg (fried in EVOO), and red wine vinaigrette in the hopes that two super foods (spinach and blueberries), stretching, and a big glass of water would help. No dice yet. Maybe soon. Also if you think my salad sounds a little bleah, it was actually pretty good. Salty and sweet. It needed slivered almonds for crunchiness.

I have not blogged about doing the food journal. Suffice to say that I'm sufficiently obsessed. I do recommend it if you feel that you are taking in way too many calories or you feel that your helpings are too large. It makes you think about each morsel you put in your mouth and what you drink. However, I have the tendency to take things too far in the hopes of completely controlling one facet of my life. It's a game that lasts forever. Will I win? What is winning? Sigh.

My nearly three your old kisses ALL THE TIME. I hate to tell him to stop because I have to pry kisses from my eight year old.

I have many pictures to post.

My kitchen is disgusting and I sprayed Scrubbing Bubbles in my bathtubs two hours ago. I have sheetrock dust all over the half bath and ashes everywhere from when I pried the big brass thing off the fireplace two days ago. I need to vacuum, especially upstairs since I hate to drag the vacuum cleaner upstairs. It's too heavy.

I'm listening to Cake. I like Cake.

Tomorrow, we're going to G'ma's to help bring in the corn. It's supposed to be cloudy and I'm glad. I love corn on the cob.

Speaking of storms, I'm loving this brief, dreamy non-humid weather we're having. It's tolerable to stand outside without feeling like you're going to catch on fire.

I miss my sister.

I need to bathe. Dried sweat is not a pleasant aroma. And the baby is kissing my armpit. Gross.

I'm dreaming of painting the living room, my bedroom, and the bathrooms. I want to hang pictures and make this place feel like home. I guess that's why I haven't posted pictures of what we've done. It's not finished. And I'm lazy.

I need to go to the library and check out some books. Thanks to Laura for e-mailing me her booklist. Wouldn't it be great if she had a running booklist on her blog? YES, saith the masses. Hint, hint.

My calf still hurts. So much for super food. I guess I'll cave and take an Advil. I need to get off my duff and get stuff done before we leave tomorrow.

Good night all.

It's My Duty

Because it is my responsibility to give you information that you do not need, I am here today to recommend to you another hilarious blog. It is called "Stuff White People Like". And I laughed. Alot. Again. Please read here about why white people like bumper stickers. Of course, Crissy Sharp was here with me and we read it together, and it was late. But it's still funny.

The Sharps left this morning. Sigh. We had a wonderful time. Yesterday, we found a small beach for the Ross Barnett Reservoir in Jackson. So fun. And today we're all a little scorched. We did get wallpaper peeling done. Well, Crissy did. She's a little weird about peeling wallpaper.

Last night, Crissy and I attended a Mrs. In Ministry meeting. This is a Bible Study held by seminary student wives. It was great. I'm really looking forward to making friends with ladies in the group. It is my understanding that some of the ladies want to start a book club. I'm all about it. It was also good to be with a group of people who are in my same boat. Everybody knows how hard it is to have your spouse in school full time. I need to learn to be more supportive and intentional with Quinn.

Just so you know, I am weak and selfish. I am narcissistic and sarcastic. I tend to jump immediately to self-pity and bitterness. My husband needs my support when he's discouraged. Please pray for me to be a better wife.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Fail Blog Promo

see more pwn and owned pictures

This gloriously, funny picture is from a new blog that Greta introduced to me. Crissy and I spent about an hour last night laughing our booties off looking at it. Not all of them are G-rated, just so you know. (Some are not PG). I probably shouldn't even recommend it, except that I laughed. ALOT.
I do like that the word FAIL is printed across the fail pictures. That's really my favorite part.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Top Ten Things to Remember About Removing Melted Black Crayon from the Dryer... And Clothes.

10. Refrain from poking yourself in the eye with a skeyer. PUT IT DOWN! You may scream very loud, if you wish. There. I feel better, too.

9. Don't jump to conclusions and scream at the children. It might not be there fault. Especially if your husband works for UPS, where they used black, oil-based crayons to write on stuff.

8. Wd-40 works well(ish) for (kinda) removing black crayon from brand new shorts I bought for my hubby. Be sure to apply plenty of Wd-40 to affected area and then follow with Dawn dish liquid and let sit for 10 minutes or so. Then wash clothes in super hot water about a hundred times, removing black ring around the top of the dryer with Windex after every wash. Do not be surprised when, after the gazillionth time the clothes are washed there is STILL a ring in the washer. It's alright. SURELY, that MUST'VE been the last ring.

7. Unless you are a Cirque de Soleil acrobat, do not attempt to use toothpaste to remove crayon caked on in the dryer. It's painful and it could've used a lot more flexibility on my part. I did see it on a website somewhere, where the victim of melted crayon caked onto dryer got the drum squeaky clean. I'm convinced there wasn't a three year old trying to kiss her arm the whole time. And that she could bend herself in a complete circle. Windex worked okay-ish. Black crayon still got on my next load of sheets. But just a little. I'm not a perfectionist.

6. The smell of WD-40 in overwhelming amounts smells like your house will blow up. It hasn't yet. I'll let you know tomorrow.

5. Do not yell too much at your husband who accidently left a UPS crayon in work shorts. Especially if he's been up since 3 am. And especially if you've mentioned several times and he helps try to get the stains out. Getting irritated with him only makes him grouchy. Nagging does, too, just for the record.

4. Remind yourself, yet again, that you should always check pockets before you put pants in the washer. And then double-check before putting them in the dryer.

3. Caked-on crayons that melt in the dryer still work.

2. Goo Gone is a good product. You can find it in Walmart in the laundry section.

1. Call yourself the queen of Science Fair Projects and document the whole thing with photography to use in your kids' next Science Fair. I wish I had thought of that earlier today. Dang.

UPDATE: The Sharps arrived. Secrets are: they brought our grill, which we didn't have room for. And steaks. Quinn grilled them for supper. And now I'm sing Hallelujah. All is forgiven in the area of black, oil-based crayons.


1 Momma happily cleaning in the house.

1 Momma decides to pull out dry clothes of dryer and give them a fold.

1 Momma, horrified, discovers clothes are covered in black something.

1 Momma, getting angrier as clothes are pulled out of dryer, calls boys to ask them who put crayons in their pocket.

3 boys deny crayon in pocket, scared of Momma's face.

1 Momma looks in dismay at pile of RUINED clothes, except for a lone black shirt.

1 Momma cleans the dryer, hoping that the sheets that are in washer don't get ruined in dryer.

What do all these equal? 1 exceedingly annoyed momma who will be behind in all the chores because of Googling how to crayon out of clothes, including a brand new pair of shorts that are Quinn's. Pooh.

I've Got Secrets and It's Killing Me

I love keeping secrets. Even though 98% percent of the time I cannot do it. Usually, I will say to Quinn, "I've got a secret". Then he'll look at me with a rye smile and say, "well, you'll tell me before the day is out, so why don't you tell me now." Well, phooey to that. Actually, the secret is being kept from the children, really on the fear that it wouldn't pan out. The Sharps are coming today (good friends of ours from Birmingham) and I am doing a little dance everytime I think about it. A little pirouette in the kitchen, a little head-bop when I make the beds, a little cabbage-patch when I'm walking up and down the stairs. It will be so fun when they pull in the driveway sometime late this morning and see the boys' reaction when they open the door to see them there. There will be much rejoicing and dancing in the street. Happiness will abound, especially since my parents left this morning and they were sad and asking them to stay. Forever. More on that in a sec. I also have TWO secrets being kept from Quinn, but, alas, I cannot share on the chance he may read this before the Sharps arrive. I may have to go to the hospital in a minute because I'm literally about to burst into a gazillion pieces because I WANT TO TELL. Please don't tell me secrets. Even if I beg you to. Ignore my promises of not telling anyone. I physically cannot handle a secret. I think it must be a condition.

My parents did leave this morning. We had a good visit. I have lots of pictures, but must get to tidying in a second, so I will not post them now. On Monday, we took my parents to the secret, magic world of Papa and Grandma's in Kosciusko. We took them for a tractor ride and rambled through the gardens. They loved it and I hope we can take them there everytime we visit. Note: the Natchez Trace Parkway is one of the most beautiful drives in the United States. Can you say, "no billboards?" It's just a two-lane highway that has no stoplights, no restaurants, no advertisements, and plenty of historic markers. And lots of lazy susan flowers, which I forgot to photograph. I had a wonderful time in Florida (lots of pictures from that trip as well) and really good visit with Mom and Dad. I'm glad I went.

Must get going to scrub the potties...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Sloob-a-Doo!

Last year at his birthday party:

Today is my eldest child's birthday and he is eight! Good grief. Talk about making me feel old...

This is last week at Grandma and Papaw's house in Florida:

Ain't he a cutey? Happy Birthday, sweetie!

PS... He asked for the ice cream cake that Missy made last year for his and Logan's birthday, but only if I could make it as good as Missy. Gee, thanks.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Kim, aka- the "Networker"

I went to my Aunt Cheryl's last night to watch a movie (Phantom of the Opera-woo hoo!) with her, my cousin, and my cousin-in-law. When I got there, Cheryl asked if I wanted to take a personality test. okee-dokee. Are those things ever really right?

Dead on. I was really quite impressed and a mite offended. Under struggles:

"You may sometimes be prone to talking too much, being disorganized, impulsive, too emotional, too optimistic, or exaggerating. Sometimes you tend to overcommit and overlook key details."

(crickets chirping with perhaps a bit of stifled laughter)

Me???? Prone to talking to much? Exaggerative? Disorganized? Too emotional? I overlook key details?

Yes. Yes. Yep. Yep, again. And, alas, yep. I was actually laughing as I read the struggles because I was wondering when the guy who made the test actually jumped out the computer to shake my hand. I just didn't see him. Under strengths:

"Networkers, like you, are normally strong communicators. You are outgoing, engaging, lively, optimistic, gregarious, persuasive, fun-loving, enthusiastic, and inspiring."

Under "preferred activities":

" Because you function best when given the opportunity to influence, meet, or entertain others, you need variety and opportunities to present your new creative ideas along with a minimum of detail work."

I like "minimum of detail work". They could have said, "loves to make an idiot of herself (I always picture a court jester when someone says I like to entertain others) and call it 'creativity'. Hates to sit and do work". That actually would've been pretty accurate.

Look here to see my results.

If you'd like to take the test for yourself (it's only 16 questions- it took me about 5 minutes), then click here. Read the directions and scroll down the page.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Vine St.

I saw a ghost yesterday.

I saw her in a restaurant eating a sundae with her friends. I followed her to her normal haunts, I watched her laugh as she walked across the street. I listened to her weep over silly crushes and I saw her sitting on a window ledge, her feet dangling over the edge, reading a book. I wanted to scold her as she made rash decisions and carelessly disregard sunscreen. I followed her as she cut class and went to the beach and I watched her wait tables. I listened to her arrogance and naivety and spied on her as she snuck into Disney hotels to swim in their pools.

Yesterday, I met a girlfriend of mine at Celebration (weird Disney-owned town that's a wee bit like the Truman Show) so that the kids could play in the public sprinkler system they have. I did this in March when I was here, but took the toll road. This time I took the main highway that runs through St. Cloud and Kissimmee and was catapulted back 14 years. After I graduated from high school, I attended a small, Christian College that used to be located in Kissimmee. As I was pulled into my memories, I turned on Over the Rhine's "Eve" and just dove in. I had not traveled on that road for at least 10 years and it was surreal. I passed the old restaurant I used to wait tables at (now a Chinese restaurant) and the Friendly's (now with broken windows and weedy sidewalks) I used to go to to get sundaes with masses of friends. I passed Old Towne where groups of us used to go and walk around. I kept seeing my face and remembered thinking the thoughts of yore. I passed the Perkins I used to get coffee at and where I was (unsuccessfully) taught how to play chess. I remembered rebellious thoughts and Dottie Datsun and going to the beach. I remembered struggling over my waking adulthood and having a bank account closed by the bank because of ill use. I remembered slurpies and sunburns and road trips. I remembered meeting Missy and I frantically tried to call her to have her join me in my nostalgia. It almost felt like an out-of-body experience. I didn't really wake up until I pulled into Chik Fil-A to get lunch.

It's interesting thinking about the metamorphosis we go through as we age. I want to laugh at myself back then, drama queen that I was (yeah, yeah I know I'm still a drama queen). How many girls will I be before I die?

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Safe travels

It's been a busy couple of days! We flew into Orlando (with no adverse effects-thanks for praying!) at about 1:30 on Thursday and have been going and visiting non-stop ever since. It's been great to see family and cuddle new babies and laugh with everybody again. Yesterday my sister and I took the kids (all seven) to Cocoa Beach and last night went to the Silver Spurs Rodeo in Kissimmee, FL. Yep, the rodeo. It was a lot more interesting than I thought it would be. There are some crazy people who like to do weird stuff- hence, ride bucking bulls and try to stay afloat on them for eight seconds. I say afloat because they really seem to be in the air above the bulls. And then the crazy guy gets bucked off the bull and scrambles up to avoid being kicked in the head by the angry bull. Reiterate: kicked in the HEAD by the ANGRY bull. GET UP, absurd, crazy man.

I slept until 8:00 this morning- which is entirely against my nature and will get ready in just a minute to hopefully find a red light saber in the city of Orlando somewhere. I promised my nephew, Cole, that he could have the said item for his birthday and now I cannot find it. Red is the key here. I did see a purple one (the only one I saw) at the local Walmart, but he wants red. MUST FIND RED (monotone-robotic voice).

Anyway, just wanted to give a quick update. More to come later.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Well, I'm very (very) sorry to say that the bathroom wallpaper upstairs has not been peeled before I go to Florida. I really (really) wanted to get that done before I left. And I didn't. Yes, Crissy, I'm a loser. And lazy. Please forgive me. And then come help me peel it. There (brushing my hands off from guilt) now that that is done...

I've been packing all day. Why, oh why, does it take eight hours for me to pack for a trip? My mom reminds me everytime that we visit that they DO have a washing machine, just in case I want to do laundry (which I do every day). I overpack (understatement). I do not know how to underpack. Or to pack just right. The whole time I packed my bag, I kept thinking to myself, "just pack three or four outfits". Nope. What if I don't feel like wearing what I packed? What if I wished I had packed the blouse I decided against. It's happened before, despite the fact that I overpack. And it's not that I go to all of these important places. We basically sit around and do nothing a lot. Or hang out. Or swim. Or go to the park. Oops, I just thought of something else I "need" to pack... And, I'm back.

I'm excited about taking the boys on a plane. Corin and Silas have both been on a plane, but they were both babies and do not remember. They are just crazy excited. I'm also a wee bit nervous because of ears hurting and tummies being upset. I threw up on the plane at least once when I was a kid. I think my mom said I threw up a on a flight attendant once. Cringe. So what can I do, except for have them chew gum and drink Coke. Benadryll is out for Corin (who has a HORRIBLE reaction to it-it makes him crazy). I might pack a little for Si and Beex. It's only an hour and a half flight, so maybe it'll be grand. I remember the last time I flew, Silas was a tiny baby and Corin was two and it was dreadful. I think I cried when I saw my Dad and said, "I'm never doing THAT again." And now I'm doing it. With an extra kid. Maybe I'll have a good story. Anything will be better than this drive to Florida. Well, hopefully.

Now I must go finish obsessing over the suitcase before Quinn goes to bed. I hope to be able to blog while I'm visiting the fam.

If you think about it, PLEASE pray that my kids don't puke on the plane. I will.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Quinn, Melinda, Folks, and Andrea

Quinn started his new job yesterday. Today and tomorrow he is required to be there at 2am for training and, to top it off, his first class started yesterday. He says he's doing okay; tonight he'll probably crash early. I told him that I wished he could've started next week, but he said he's glad to get this first part over with.

I had Melinda over for coffee this morning. You may remember the name from this post about our first trip to the school in January. She and her husband had invited us over for dinner on that trip and I really liked her. They made us feel very welcome. Anyhoo, she and I, I think, will be good friends. We chatted about Anne of Green Gables, (in which she felt the same annoyance I did over the last Megan Follows movie. Did she even read the books? Megan Follows, that is), C-section births, Over the Rhine, seminary, and other such things. It was lovely and I plan on seeing her a lot.

Around lunchtime, I packed up some lunch and headed to RTS to meet Quinn. We had lunch with a lot of other families and it was nice to meet some more people. I'm really looking forward to going to the Mrs. in Ministry meetings they have here. When I get back from Florida, I will be all about it.

Andrea asked me today if I went camping. I smiled at her. It's funny to think that I originally thought we were so much alike. Basically we both like to run and bake. And there's where the similiarity ends. I told her I WOULD camp, if there were bathrooms and electricity close by, and preferably in a camper. With air conditioning. She has a great laugh.

Well, that's my life up until 1:00 today. Maybe I'll update you on the rest of my day tonight. Pins and needles.

Link List Update

After much procrastination, ta-dah!, I updated my link list...

If you do not see yours on there, then it means I don't like you. Oh, I mean I overlooked it. Let me know. When I say I overlooked it, it means that I actually did everybody I know and then forgot to save it a whole bunch of times. ANNOYING. So don't get angry, just get even. Leave me a nasty message or just tell me what you think of me. OR, you could just leave me a nice comment (cussing me under your breath) and let me know that I forgot you.

I've heard that Donna Brumlow has a blog and I can't find it. Help me out.

Monday, June 02, 2008

A New Project (obsess much?)

The time is currently 7:52 on my microwave and the house is quiet, except for the whir of the washing machine (always). Why is my house quiet, you may ask? Because everyone, except for me, is asleep. Quinn went down at about 7:00 (with just a wee bit of help from the old Benadryll) and the boys went down about 7:30. So now I'm awake. By myself. Oh, what, WHAT shall I do? I will not peel wallpaper. I do not want the cursing to wake up the children. I will not mop, even though the floor is a bit sticky from popsicles (I gave in). Nope. It's Blog-o-rama time.

Today, because I do not have enough to obsess about, I started a food journal on Nutrimirror. I was mildly curious about my calorie intake per day so I instantly became overwhelmed with curiosity and decided I would start a food journal blog. I googled "food journal" to get some ideas and saw this free site where you can enter what you have eaten and it tallies up your calories and so on. So, no new blog (how boring is a food journal anyway). Quinn is skeptical of it (I tend to go WAY overboard with something like that) and is kind of watching me with his eyebrows raised. What he doesn't know (don't tell him- Babe shut your eyes) is that I ALREADY obsess about food. Typing it on a website is, uh, a good way for, um, me to, hmmm..., educate (YES!) myself on making better choices (oh yeah, that sounds great) in my food intake. Who's against education? NOT ME.

So, here are a couple of reasons why I wanted to do a food journal:

A long time ago I decided to not drink Coke and Dr. Pepper anymore because of their high calories and zero nutritional value. I will have one very occasionally, but it has to be regarded as "dessert" in my brain. The same goes with Mochaccinos from Starbucks, sweet tea, and really pretty much any drink that has calories. I usually drink water instead. Sounds great, right? Yeah. Great. On the flip side, because I do not KNOW the caloric value of a huge piece of chocolate cake, then I don't worry about it. And eat a lot of it. The same was true with homemade cheesecake until I found out it has 1200 (!!!!!!!!) calories per slice. Talk about ruining it for me. I will not eat a huge bowl of ice cream (because it's not good to do that), but instead will eat a big scoop of ice cream in a coffee cup (packed down) with hot fudge, marshmallow, and caramel toppings drizzled all over it (Oooh, that sounds delish right now) because that is supposed to be better (again, in my head it is better). I eat a lovely bowl of GoLean Crunch in the morning because it has lots of protein and fiber to keep me full longer, but will eat handfuls of dry cereal because it's just THERE. I'll make a nice salad with carrots, baby spinach leaves, chicken, and tomatoes for lunch and then eat the rest of what the children don't finish because it's not FINISHED.

All these to say, I was MILDLY curious what my caloric intake was and I will watch it over the next few weeks to see if, just by paying attention to what I'm doing, I will make better choices in what I eat. And, I'm looking for a new way to drive my husband crazy. Bingo.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Popsicles and an Airplane

Yesterday I cleaned the whole house. It looks clean and it smells clean. Let's see how long it lasts. While I was cleaning the kitchen yesterday, Felix came to me asking for a popsicle. I had bought popsicles while the Sharps were at our house and the boys had eaten them all this week. Felix loves popsicles. He asks for them all day, without ceasing. "Momma, I have popseekle?" "Momma, I eat popseekle now?" "Momma, I eat popseekle for 'nack?" We ran out of popsicles two days ago. I have not yet purchased more popsicles. However, this does not stop a relentless two year old from asking every ten minutes as long as he's awake. My answer is the same, "Felix, we are out of popsicles. Would you like something else?" To which he always says yes. Then we hunt him something out of the pantry and he eats it, only to come to me later and ask me for more popseekles. No, no it IS cute. His little voice is slightly lispy and he's learning how to put sentences together. However, it is highly annoying to be asked the same question over and over again, especially as persistent as he is. I do not remember my older two doing this, and yet I'm sure they had some similiar knack they used to do to grate on my nerves.

Well yesterday, in a momentary lapse of reason (hmmm, Pink Floyd album), I told the boys that we would be flying to Florida on Thursday for a visit to Grandma and Papaw (my parents). I had told the older ones this before, but had not mentioned it to Beex on purpose, because of his habit of asking me a kajillion times about whatever. And THEN, I said to Felix, "We'll have to tell Grandma how much you like popsicles so she'll have some for you." And, FREEZE. I regretted saying those two sentences almost as soon as they exited my mouth. For the rest of the day, and already three times this morning, Felix would come and say, "Gwanma said to get my popseekles momma?" "Momma, we fwy auhplane to Gwanma's and get popseekles?" "Momma, we go latuh to Gwanma's house and get popseekles?" "No momma, you say Gwanma get me some popseekles." Later, under his own deduction of reasoning, figured out that Connor (my sister's youngest) lives in Florida so he would then throw "Conna" into the mix. "Momma, we fwy auhplane to Gwanma's and see Conna and get popseekles a'day (today)?" I tried to teach him to say in 5 days, but that really only confused him. Even during our movie night last night, he leaned over to me and whispered, "Momma, I see Conna and get popseekles a'day."

And now, as I'm posting, he has come to me, kissing my arm and saying, "Momma, you tell Gwanma to get me popseekles? I go see Conna and we have popseekles a'day? Momma, you say Gwanma get me popseekles? Momma, I hungry for bekfast."

Mother, please, PLEASE, buy some popsicles for my poor, deprived two year old.