Sunday, January 31, 2010
My friend Sonya and I decided to sign up for some classes at the local Home Depot. They had a class on painting, a class on tiling and a class on closet organization scheduled for Saturday so we signed up for all three of them.
First just let me say that I'm totally mad at myself for forgetting the camera...it would have been fun to have some pictures to go along with this blog. Oh well, maybe next time.
Second, even if you register for the classes online, you might call the store ahead of time to actually confirm that the classes are going to happen. The painting "class" no one appeared to know anything about and we ended up standing around in the paint department talking to an older gentleman about paint colors and finishes and what rollers to use, etc. I did learn a few tidbits I never knew before; however, it took all of about 15 minutes, so we piddled around the store for the next hour, oohing and ahhing over things I can't afford. LOL
We checked at the customer service department and the tiling class was a "go", so went and sat down at the table for that. We even got to use the tools, how cool is that??? I'm pretty convinced that I need a tile cutter and a pink toolbox and I'm trying to convince the husband that letting me tile the bathroom floor is a good idea and he has rolled his eyes at me now twice...sigh. He has no faith in me...no faith. I think I need a Home Depot credit card... (JUST KIDDING HONEY!!) I also need something called a "wet saw" but I'm not really sure what it is. And a cordless drill and a hammer and a trowel and a squishy thingy (I can't remember what it's called but I'd know it if I saw it). Honey, are you getting all this? Oh and don't forget - a pink toolbox...I need something to put it all in, right? (Yes, I know, this is where your daughter gets it from)
We completed the tiling class and decided we had an hour to kill before the closet organization class, so we headed off to lunch. We ate Mexican food at the Salty Iguana in Independence. The spinach enchiladas were pretty good although I have to say the blue corn tortillas they wrap them in kind of gross me out visually. :) Again...left the stupid camera at home so no pictures of this. Finished lunch and headed back to Home Depot.
The same guy that taught our tiling class, Josh, also taught the closet organization class. It wasn't too much of a class, but he was a nice guy and humored all of our questions and talked about how his wife buys too many shoes and he was going to have to build her a special closet just to put all of her shoes in. He lost points with me because he then proceeded to talk about playing Warcrap, which we all know is the bane of my existence. His poor wife, I feel for her.
As far as the closet organization, they have a really cool website at www.homedepot.com/closetmaid where you can go in and design your own closet based on the dimensions, etc with their closet organizer products, so we probably could have skipped the class but we had a good time and learned about the website so it was worth it.
I totally enjoyed my day out with Sonya and we had a good time learning about something new. I'm definitely excited to try out some more of their classes - next up: Updating Bath Fixtures and Installing Light Fixtures - next time I'll remember the camera!
Saturday, January 30, 2010
Seriously...this is horrible...and I really like Luke Wilson but good grief. What makes this one #1 in my mind is that my husband loved it and still walks around quoting it at times. "But honey, it's got what plants crave..."
The only redeeming quality of this movie is that it had Tom Petty in it.
I'm a girl and this movie made the list. Long, drawn out and awful.
This could have been a reasonably cool scary flick if it didn't make me totally sick at my stomach just watching the awful jiggling of the cameras. I get that was part of the charm for some people, but I get motion sickness and I hated it.
You don't follow up the original "Grease" with this...seriously.
Terrible, terrible movie...although it did give me a giggle that there was a character named "Janessa" in it. Otherwise, L-A-M-E.
I could probably drag this list out a whole lot longer but I've got things to do today. This stay-at-home mom got a babysitter for the afternoon and I'm getting out of the house for a while, whoohoo!!
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Cute little booger, wasn't he?? However, ALL puppies are cute at one point... A white boxer is also an anomaly generally considered a "defect"...My handsome, sweet husband felt sorry for him and therefore we ended up with him. Now as he makes messes and accidentally plows everyone over in the house, it's generally US who are sorry....
That adorable little puppy soon grew into this:
Look at the awkward, gangly, all-legs, vision of goofiness we now have residing in our household. There are the two dogs...the other is a terrier named Scrappy, but we'll tell his story another day...normally they are fighting and picking at each other constantly but I happened to catch this rare moment of snuggling so I felt compelled to snap a few shots.
Now for the mugshots...
Mugshot #1: Front view. His name is Buster but I think we should have named him Mugsy...he looks like a Mugsy, doesn't he??
He's lucky the kids adore him! lol
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Can you say "divalicious" in the sequins rockstar dress-up outfit??
See my shiny skirt??
It's a "Party in the USA" at our house.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
1. The oldest. He has decided at 13 years old that he hates me and has gone to the d-bag's house and "supposedly" refuses to come home, which is part of why we are in court. I keep trying to tell myself one of these days he's going to see things for how they are but at this rate it may be when he's in his 30s with kids of his own. It's frustrating but I love him very much and this is breaking my heart.
2. The second. He would LIVE on video games if I would let him and has also taken to just making random noises for no apparent reason.
3. The middle. Still have thumb sucking issues with him when he gets tired or is engrossed in a TV show. I've tried everything to stop this with no success.
4. The daughterling. Let's just say how DOESN'T she test me?? She's the only girl of the bunch so the boys spoil her rotten, her dad spoils her rotten and she is a one-girly girl toddler wrecking crew. She will tear up anything just for the sake of tearing it up. Drives me crazyyyyy.
5. The littlest. He assists his sister in all of her little criminal adventures and his latest thing has been throwing things at people; balls, legos, hot wheel cars(owwwww). He's got pretty decent aim for 2 years old.
6. Collectively, can someone tell me WHY when you tell a child NOT to do something, they turn around and do it again immediately???
Me: Don't touch that.
Child (Doesn't matter which one, they ALL do it, even the 13 yo): **Reaches out and touches it again**
Me: I just SAID don't touch that and I know you heard me!! Why did you touch it again?
Child: I don't know...
Sighhhhhhh. It's a good thing I love them all so much. Seriously, they make my whole world. :)
Thursday, January 21, 2010
First I want to give a shout-out to my friend Gregg for recommending this book to me. This was one that I did not want to put down! I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning (2:15 am) to finish it.
The plot continued to build all the way to the shocking end. Camille Preaker is a journalist in Chicago that grew up in a small town in Missouri. Her editor sends her back to her hometown to report on two young girls that had been recently murdered in the town. Camille's family is bizarrely dysfunctional and as the story develops, Camille's history of hospitalization for cutting herself is revealed as well. The story was intense and entertaining. The characters were sometimes a little "typically small town" but mostly well written. I really enjoyed reading this from start to finish, and I cannot wait to read her newest book, "Dark Places". I'm definitely adding this author to my reading list for a long time to come.
I can already picture the craft projects I'm going to do with this little beauty and the hubby already owes money in the jar today, so one of these days it WILL be mine, bwahahaha!
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
"Towner Whitney, the self-confessed unreliable narrator, hails from a family of Salem women who can read the future in the patterns in lace, and who have guarded a history of secrets going back generations. Now the disappearance of two women is bringing Towner back home to Salem—and is bringing to light the shocking truth about the death of her twin sister."
If you keep up with the blog at all, you'll notice that this book review comes only a couple of days after the last one. :) Once I started reading this one, I didn't want to put it down and my housework is showing it.
I love stories about Salem. One day I'd love to go there. The history is intriguing and woven throughout the book but doesn't detract from the plot of the story. All of the characters were well-developed and the plot was engaging and unpredictable.
Originally when I came across a description of this book, it was under a Young Adult classification, but I really feel that this story will appeal to all ages. It has suspense, magic, eccentric characters, romance...just some of the qualities that made this a great read. One of my favorite books over the past few years was "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield, and it was really comparable to that as far as keeping me engaged and intrigued. I didn't want to put this one down. A definite thumbs-up!
Saturday, January 16, 2010
I finished reading this in the wee hours of the morning last night. Here's the Publisher's Weekly synopsis:
"Fans of Robinson's acclaimed debut Housekeeping (1981) will find that the long wait has been worth it. From the first page of her second novel, the voice of Rev. John Ames mesmerizes with his account of his life—and that of his father and grandfather. Ames is 77 years old in 1956, in failing health, with a much younger wife and six-year-old son; as a preacher in the small Iowa town where he spent his entire life, he has produced volumes and volumes of sermons and prayers, "[t]rying to say what was true." But it is in this mesmerizing account—in the form of a letter to his young son, who he imagines reading it when he is grown—that his meditations on creation and existence are fully illumined. Ames details the often harsh conditions of perishing Midwestern prairie towns, the Spanish influenza and two world wars. He relates the death of his first wife and child, and his long years alone attempting to live up to the legacy of his fiery grandfather, a man who saw visions of Christ and became a controversial figure in the Kansas abolitionist movement, and his own father's embittered pacifism. During the course of Ames's writing, he is confronted with one of his most difficult and long-simmering crises of personal resentment when John Ames Boughton (his namesake and son of his best friend) returns to his hometown, trailing with him the actions of a callous past and precarious future. In attempting to find a way to comprehend and forgive, Ames finds that he must face a final comprehension of self—as well as the worth of his life's reflections. Robinson's prose is beautiful, shimmering and precise; the revelations are subtle but never muted when they come, and the careful telling carries the breath of suspense. There is no simple redemption here; despite the meditations on faith, even readers with no religious inclinations will be captivated. Many writers try to capture life's universals of strength, struggle, joy and forgiveness—but Robinson truly succeeds in what is destined to become her second classic."
This book is beautifully written, there is just no other way to describe it. It is exceptionally introspective from the point of view of Rev. John Ames. The only negative thing that I have to say about this book is that if you are looking for a plot in any way, you will be disappointed. It is written in letter format to his young son and that is exactly what you will find, a letter with several anecdotal episodes along the way.
With my own father passing a little over a year ago, reading this book made me wonder what he would have written if he had left a similar "letter" to my brother and me. It also gave me pause to consider that even from a minister's point of view of Christianity, it is commonplace that they don't feel that they have all the answers to life's questions either and ponder things just like the rest of us.
This book was kind of a slow read for me, but definitely a beautiful piece of literature worth checking out.
Next up? "The Lace Reader" by Brunonia Barry
1. Who didn't have a pair of Mork suspenders back in the day?? I got these at Christmas one year when I was probably 7 or 8 and I loved the silly things. I wanted to wear them everywhere.
2. I also loved my pink Chuck Taylors circa middle school. Granted they have come back in and out of style a few times since then but just past the mid-point of my 30s I just can't justify attempting to wear them again...dangit.
3. I had this awesome pair of red suede cowboy boots at one point. I can't tell you if they were ever in style but I loved them anyway. I'd totally wear them again if I could find any like them. lol
4. I also loved my rainbow toe socks. I've even seen these from time to time in stores but I never seem to be able to justify picking any up. Next time I see them in the store, I'm totally getting them.
5. Acid wash jeans...need I say more? Oh wait I do. Only with the tight roll at the bottom too...anything remotely loose is NOT going to work. LOL
6. I had a green prom dress made from that shiny material that was RIGHTEOUS, people. If I weren't so lazy, I'd drag out the pictures and scan them - my mother made me go to the Sears studio to get my picture taken in this thing. I still have it in my closet to this day and it is GREAT. Sadly it does not fit me anymore but a friend and I have made a pact that if we lose 15 lb and she can fit in her silver one and I can fit in my green one, we're TOTALLY hitting an 80s night at the bar. A-W-E-S-O-M-E (Like totally!!) lol
Friday, January 15, 2010
I still haven't gotten the infernal Christmas tree down. It's beginning to be the bane of my existence. The tree and I have a stare-down daily that goes something like this:
Me: (Glare) You're coming down today.
Tree: I don't think so, you aren't unplugging me, woman.
Me: Not only am I unplugging you, you're going back in the box and back into storage.
Tree: The 3-year-old will revolt. She loves my pretty lights.
Me: I'm sick of looking at you....sighhhh.
Tree: (Continues twinkling sarcastically).
The tree is winning this argument because by the time my dear daughter goes to bed at night, I've lost all motivation to take the blasted thing down. Maybe I should start making some heart shaped ornaments and stick them on there for Valentine's Day?
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Unfortunately I still pretty much feel stuck in the house because there is still snow all over the ground and it's still too cold to get out and do much of anything. Looking at these same walls day in and day out is making me hate this house. lol Granted when we bought this house, we knew it wasn't our "forever home" and I'm thankful I have a roof over my head. I find myself looking at real estate websites and dreaming about the next house, wherever that may be. I just know it isn't going to be here. It almost makes me motivated enough to start packing. :)
I'd like to say I'm really motivated about cleaning and laundry and getting things done in the house; however, this weather really has me in a rut and the kids are bouncing off the walls (and coloring on them too, geesh) and it's about all I can do to keep up.
I started reading the first book on my book list for 2010 - "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson and while it's beautifully written, it's kind of depressing too. It's basically about a man who married a younger woman and has a young son and he is dying and the book is basically a letter of things that he wants his son to know about him, life, etc. I'm hoping when I get to the end there will be something uplifting about it or I will have wasted a few nights on it...not that there haven't been things to ponder in it, because there are several parts that have been very thought provoking for me. I guess in this winter season that has me in a blah mood anyway it probably wasn't the best choice of reading material for the time of year. I'll let you know how it comes out, one way or another.
Now I'm just going to stop and be a bitch for a minute, so pardon me ahead of time if this offends or pisses you off at all. I've never been known for my social graces and I'm sure not going to start now... Apparently there was another blogger out in blogland that committed suicide (today or yesterday?). First off, I didn't know her personally or even on the internet so I have no personal connection to this whatsoever. My heart goes out to her family and the ones left behind, but on a purely personal note - suicide is seriously the most selfish, crappy thing anyone could ever do to their loved ones and there is absolutely no excuse for it. In this day and age of mental health awareness and availability, there is always, always a different alternative.
Oh and one more thing? I get that we live in a world of online social networking, I do. However, rather than put the circumstances of someone's death all over the internet, wouldn't it be better to let the family grieve in peace? Notify people? Sure. But I don't think we need to know every personal or miniscule social networking connection to the person that you had or thought you had. If something happens to me, there will be no follow up on my blog, nor will there be anyone "tweeting" it. And before anyone gets their panties in a wad over this, get over yourself already. I named no names in this blog and am making a general observation and voicing my own opinion, it's not a personalized attack on anyone. Stepping off my bitchy soapbox now....
Sorry, I'm not known for always saying the "right thing" - in fact, I'm very rarely known for saying the right thing but I will tell you the truth and what's on my mind and never leave you wondering how I feel about it. So my thoughts and feelings for today in a nutshell are:
1. I hate winter.
2. I'm not wild about this book I'm reading right now.
3. I think suicide is a selfish coward's way out.
4. I hate that this woman's family is having to go through this hurt and heartbreak because of her cowardice.
5. I'm unmotivated.
6. I'm sick of this house.
7. No one is allowed to tweet about me after I'm dead.
8. Did I say I hate winter already? Because I do...
COME ON, SPRING!!
And as an aside...I blog for myself and myself only - it's not a publicity thing for me. If it happens to entertain anyone reading, that's cool too. Consider this my "personal public diary" if you will. I don't do sponsorships, giveaways or review things (except books that I get for myself) and probably never will. I can offend you without worry of what my advertisers or corporate sponsors think and with the exception of a very few, I probably don't care what you think either. Just thought I'd put that out there for anyone ready to type their little hands off to flame me for this post that "I don't give a shit" in advance. ;)
Friday, January 8, 2010
1. Cutting a Christmas tree at the farm with my grandpa when I was four. I had on this stay-puft marshmallow style snowsuit and Grandpa wanted to cut a tree that was on the side of a hill. I was not any more graceful then than I am today and I kept falling and rolling down the hill in my snowsuit. My older cousins kept having to come down and pick me up and haul me back up the hill. They would stand me up and I would topple all over again.
2. When I discovered the tooth fairy wasn't real. I stayed up, determined I was going to get to see the tooth fairy. I had my tooth all set in my tooth fairy pillow with the pocket on the side next to my bed. About midnight, I heard a noise outside the door and squinted my eyes shut. I even stayed still through the flashlight shining in my face to make sure I was asleep. The noise gets closer, closer, closer and then "MOM!!!! YOU'RE THE TOOTH FAIRY?!?!" Scared the crap out of her and my dad was in the other room dying laughing.
3. Making cinnamon rolls with my Grandma K. We made these cinnamon rolls that were completely awful once. I have no idea how old I was at the time. We took some out to Grandpa, who was trying to choke them down, and we sat and giggled at him trying to eat them because we knew how bad they were.
4. Squirrel hunting with my dad. I used to beg relentlessly to go hunting with my dad. He always told me no and that I had to stay at the house with my mother and grandma...sigh. Finally I pestered him enough that he gave him and told me we would go squirrel hunting the next day. He shoots a squirrel and points to where it drops and says "Well, go get it." EWWWW, seriously??? Picture me as a young girl, walking through the woods, holding dead squirrels by the very tips of their tails, arms stretched out as far from my body as they would go. Yep, he cured me of wanting to go hunting and I never asked him again. :)
5. Getting called to the principal's office in elementary school for the first time. Let's preface this by saying I was a very well behaved child up until I was in high school probably. :) They called me to the principal's office over the intercom and I felt my stomach flipflop. My mind is racing, thinking "What did I do? Did I do something wrong? Why are they calling for me?" A 50 ft walk to the office felt like miles. By the time I got there I had tears in my eyes - the school principal was a formidable man and back then, the principal gave out swats with a paddle for misbehavior. :) By the time the school secretary walked me into his office my knees were knocking, my heart was in my throat, and he says "Would you like to help me with the school's United Way campaign this year?"
6. First attempt at giving someone else a ride on my banana seat purple bike with the basket on the front. :) My friend Kristy came over to spend the night and we went out to play the next day and took my bike. I think originally we started to take turns riding up and down the street and then decided that I could give her a ride on the back. We were probably about 8 or 9 at the time?? We take off down the hill and the front wheel starts wobbling. I cannot control it - at all. We make it to the bottom of the hill before wiping out - knees skinned, elbows skinned and Kristy had the biggest goose-egg on her head I think I've ever seen. We get back to the house and I got totally chewed out by my mother because she was horrified to have to send Kristy back to her mother looking like she's been beaten up. :)
I have a ton of memories growing up but those were the first that came to mind. Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!!
My wonderful hubby got up with the wee ones this morning and let me get a little more shuteye. That always makes the day start off great. The coffee pot apparently got over its issue from yesterday and the coffee actually brewed correctly instead of bubbling out the top of the coffee filter thingy (which is what happened yesterday).
I won two blog giveaways, one at www.oopsicraftmypants and one at http://northernmama-northerngirl.blogspot.com - yay!
Then as I was checking my email, I got a comment on my reading list from one of the authors!!! How exciting is that?? I can't wait to get to the bookstore and buy her new book - I've seen some previews of it online and I've got to say, I have kind of a girl-crush on her. LOL Oh here's a link to her book, check it out, it's GORGEOUS. http://www.steinerbooks.org/detail.html?id=9780880107020
I got two more requests for paperback swap books, so I got those ready to mail and put them out. I feel sorry for the poor postal workers during weather like this - I don't even like poking my nose out the door, much less having to be out delivering mail in it. It makes me wish I had some styrofoam "to go" cups hanging out in the cabinet to hand him a hot cup of coffee as he passes by our house.
The Christmas tree is STILL up...so much for my idea that it wasn't staying up one more day, argh! Even Paul, who was originally on the bandwagon with the 3 year old that it was fine to just leave it up, is saying "People are going to start talking about us like we're weirdos if we don't get this tree down..." Ah well, I've been talked about before, it won't be the first time and certainly won't be the last...
It is snowing AGAIN!! Big, fat, fluffy, white flakes are coming down as I type this. The temperature is currently 3 degrees with a windchill of -11. It's pretty in a nightmarish sort of way. I've got cabin fever something awful but don't want to drag everyone out and then go through rounds of sickness and colds...
So far the children seem to be staying in their rooms for naps. HALLELUJAH!! I guess I should get a few things done before the natives start getting restless. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!!
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Monday, January 4, 2010
Sunday, January 3, 2010
My next door neighbor feeds the birds. Note to self: If and when we ever get to move, buy a bird feeder. Isn't this guy gorgeous? Look how chubby and beautiful he is!
It also makes me add a new camera to my wish list for the year...and Photoshop. This could have been a fantastic picture and it's so-so due to the camera and lack of editing software. LOL
There were some beautiful birds out this morning around her feeder and this is probably the best picture I got. I hope everyone has a wonderful day and I hope we can dig out of this snow at some point...maybe March???
Saturday, January 2, 2010
OK so I know the topic for this week is "Six Ways You've Decided to Change Your Life in 2010"; HOWEVER, I've done like 3 posts on my intentions for the year, reading lists, etc so I'm pretty well over it by now. Instead, I'm going to do "Six Ways You've Decided NOT to Change Your Life in 2010". :)
1. As I sit here drinking my first cup of coffee in the morning, let's just go ahead and put it out there that I have no intention of giving up caffeine....probably ever. I need it. It makes everything right with the world. So poo on you health experts, leave me and my coffee & Diet Coke alone.
2. I am not going to give up on teaching my children manners. In this day and age where it seems like manners and respect for other people have flown out the window, it makes me even more determined to impress upon my children that having manners and respect for yourself and others is vital. So guess what kids? There will still be no elbows on Mom's dinner table, the words "may I please" will be more likely to get you what you want, and you still need to say "thank you".
3. I am not going to continue to try to live up to my mother's unrealistic expectations. I live in a house with five kids, two dogs and a messy husband. Guess what? My house is not going to pass the white glove test and probably never will. (Hey lady, you had two kids, 9 years apart in age and you were miserable to live with - we rarely felt like we could even play.) I want my kids to enjoy life to the fullest and if it takes a bit of clutter to achieve that, then so be it.
4. I am not going to leave the Christmas tree up for another day, regardless of how my 3-year-old daughter feels about it. ("It's beeee-youuu-ti-ful Mommy, I want to leave it there! Pwease don't take it down!) Tonight I am waiting until she goes to bed, having the hubs get the boxes out and we're packing that baby up - I'm sick of looking at it.
5. I am not going to stop cooking healthy meals, sorry children and junk foodie husband. We are still going to continue to eat veggies, no matter how much you loathe them, yep even you, Mr. Man. The entire contents of the grocery store do not reside in the frozen food aisle, family, deal with it.
6. I am not going to apologize for who I am or my choices in life. I've made some mistakes, some whoppers. I'm the one that lives with the consequences of them and I do the best I can with what I have. I'm not going to be perfect ever and I'm okay with that.
Well those are my six things I'm not changing. I'm sure I could find more but those are the big ones off the top of my head as I contemplate my second cup of coffee. Hope everyone enjoys their weekend!
Friday, January 1, 2010
We brought in the New Year very low key this year. The hubby played World of Warcrap (I hate that damn game), the boys are at their sperm donor's, the little ones went to bed on time and I sat and flipped through the various NYE specials on TV (all of which were horrible) and knitted. Geesh, how old does that make me sound? Oh well, I am justifying it by saying I was doing something productive.
The first day of 2010 I would say has been par for the course around here...streaking toddlers, marking on walls, emptying the refrigerator while Mom is in the bathroom, and a general refusal to nap (however, they are at least staying in their rooms so I can't complain TOO much). I got the living room cleaned up from the two mini tornadoes that played in here earlier and the kitchen is half straightened. I'd love to close my eyes and nap but Lord knows if I close my eyes even for a second, my two little stinkers will escape from their rooms and proceed to destroy anything in sight.
I added a couple more books to my reading list so I can go back and update that post later on and I finished a few more inches of a scarf I'm working on for a friend. Now I think it's time to go hop in the shower before the hubby comes home from work and surprise him by actually being in clothing today instead of PJs. Hey, if you were a stay-at-home-mom, you'd stay in your PJs too, it's ok to be JEALOUS! LOL
Thanks for sticking around and reading my nonsense. Here's to hoping we have a lot of fun nonsense to write about this year!