Thursday, May 29, 2008


My big floppy hat!

Check out my new hat. I actually grabbed two - a white one and a multicolored one, but here's the white one:
Cute, isn't it? And you know that I look great in it! And the best part is that it keeps the sun off of my face. Yes, I need to keep the sun off of my face and this really works. Duh, who knew - a hat would do the trick. So far I've worn it to the mailbox, on the back deck, to the bus stop (twice!), to water the plants, and to grab the paper in the morning. Yes, my hat and I go very many places and not very far from home, but we go places together.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Close the DOOR!

I need the car manufacturers to invent a system that lets me know when my car doors are open. You see, I have a problem that I'm apparently incapable of fixing all by myself. Actually, I've gotten it under control somewhat, but here the gist:

Yes, I leave my car doors open - and I do so regularly. I'm not sure if I'm not hitting the door close button hard enough, or if it bounces open, but I regularly come out and find my doors open. Can't blame this one on the kids - they aren't allowed tot ouch the doors. Max is now allowed to close the door once he's in the seat, but that's when he's inside strapped in, and that's never been a problem.
I've even had a bird get stuck in my car overnight because the doors were left open once. So, you see, I'd love it if the car manufacturers would create something to take the responsibility of closing the car doors away from me. Then again I can just take an extra minute to make sure that they are closed and stop being such a ninny. Funny, that's what Tom says too - not the ninny part but the rest. Sigh...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

American Idol Rewind?

So I know that I'm a few days late and I'm sure that this is a few dollars short, but I just watched the finale of American Idol last night(Go TIVO!) and I have a few observations (I know, complete shock).

Bryan Adams - Not at all what I thought. For some reason I thought that he was a bit, well, thicker. He was a skinny guy that I've apparently never seen before in my life.

Jonas Brothers - Cute now, but what about in 10 years? Their curly hair and cute dimples and squaky songs don't lead me to believe in any long term success. They are cutie pies though, and they do have a following...

And last but not least, George Michael? Who thought that THAT would be a a good idea? Sheesh.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

I look like WHO????

How do i look like any of these folks...except for maybe Sir Elton...and that's kinda sad to say...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Sam's Plant

Sam planted a few seeds in a cup about a week and a half ago in preschool. Last week they sprouted up and ever since Sam's been checking on them to see how they are growing. The really cool part is that they WERE growing! In our house of things that don't live long, here we had a specimin that seemed to defy that dictum, and continued to grow well past the first few days of it's little life.

And then it turned south (not the direction, but downhill). As with any other cute plants in our house, it is dying an untimely death. This one was accidental, not due to my black thumb though. And poor Sam - he doens't have a clue because he didn't ask about his plant today...yet. Last night while doing hte dishes, I asked Tom to turn the cute little plant so that it would keep growing straight up - it leans towards the sun and while it's probably not necessary, I was doing this every few days. Well, Tom obliged me and then knocked the plant off the window ledge. And the broke. So now the plant that was healthy and growing, now looks like a stump.

The worst part - we're not sure what seed it was that took off growing, and so we can't easily replace it. There were three seeds that we know of in there - a pumpkin seed, a tomato seed, and a flower seed. I looked online and the pumpkinand tomato seeds produce diffferent leaves than what we saw. But a flower? Well that could be anything. So, when Tom talks to Sam tonight about this and explains what happens, I'm sure we'll end up planting a while field of flowers - wildflowers that is - and they'll most likely be outside, away from the sink, where neither Tom nor I can kill them.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Let's March on Meth!

"March on Meth Parade" I saw this on a flyer, I kid you not. We were in Sedona for Dad and Doreen's wedding back in March and I wanted ice cream. Well, Sedona rolls up the carpet at 9pm, so Tom and I found ourselves in the local Safeway buying these teeny tiny cups of Ben and Jerry's and Haagen Daas (for $1 a piece - what a deal!).

After running into my cousin and uncle, and after checking out, we saw these flyers sitting on the check-outs. See if it strikes you as odd as it struck us:

One has to read ALL THE WAY TO THE BOTTOM before you realize that we aren't supposed to show up for the parade on meth. You'd think they would mention that up front. I'm sure that there might be some folks who would read this flyer as I did - and if they were ON METH while reading the flyer, might not even get to the end of it to find out that this was an anti-drug rally. Actually, an anti meth rally, because apparently the lovely little town of Sedona has a problem with meth (or so I'm led to believe by this flyer).

So, dear people of Sedona, next time you create a flyer for your parade, put the anti substance abuse tag line right at the top. And I promise, this time no one will show up on meth.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

I'll blame Becky for this one.

I am not a girly girl. I don't have any sense of style, nor do I know how to accessorize (or wear lots of jewelry). When we lived in Texas I hung out with folks who had a much better sense of style that I did. One of those folks, Becky, collected (and actually used) purses. She had an undisclosed number of purses and they were of every shape, size, and color. Well, Becky, Kim, and a group of friends got me this GREAT FSU purse and I use it proudly during football season. But some of her purse loving has apparently rubbed off. I now hoard purses. Thanks Becky - if you're reading this I know it will make you proud! My collection is small, but I have many more purses than I have pairs of shorts, I surpassed my shoe collection a while back (it's pretty small so it's not a big stretch), and I have more purses than years I've been married. So, here's to the two newest addition to my purse family - an FSU purse and a coveted UT purse! Can't wait for football season to put them to good use!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Things Kids Say - Part 5

Our kids attend a preschool at a United Methodist Church, but we are not religious people at all. This particular preschool is absolutely fantastic, and we are so happy with it and what the kids have learned there. Over the time they've been there the kids have attended chapel once a month. I always kind of wondered what they are learning in chapel as they aren't generally too forthcoming. But the other day Sam coughed up a little bit more info than normal:

Me: So what did you learn at chapel today?
Sam: Oh, just about God and stuff.

Yeah...God and stuff...

Monday, May 19, 2008


Sorry to have neglected you for an entire week, but my hubby has been sick. This means that instead of taking time to share with you, I've been picking up his duties. Instead of sharing nutritious meals with my husband, I've been eating mac and cheese, PB & J, and frozen pizza. Instead of having relaxing time with my hubby I've been hiding from him. And let me tell you - so far so good. He's finally amongst the living (sort of) and hopefully coming out of the fog.

So this is why I've neglected you for an entire week. But the good part is, I do have some stories - and hopefully they will amuse you like they did for me! Have a great rest of the week and we'll see you tomorrow!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Go Speed Racer!

So Speed Racer was a total success, with a few minor exceptions (and it was eventually added to the calendar - lest I doubt them next time!).

The Good: We went to see it at theIMAX theater at the Udvar Hazy Air and Space Museum out near Dulles Airport, which in and of itself is cool. We had a plane fly right over us going in AND coming out. We got there with plenty of time to spare. We got an up close parking spot. We brought our own water bottles (no snacks allowed but water was, but no one touched it). The seats were comfortable and since no food in the theater, no sticky floors! The movie itself was GREAT! The kids loved it and the parents did too. I'd love to see a sequel, or prequel, or whatever they come out with - I really dug it!

The Bad: We got there about 25 minutes early, but we were near the end of the line to get in. We had to sit up towards the front and off to the side a bit. In an IMAX theater, not a good thing. We were WAAAAAY too close. The movie itself was almost sensory overload. When you add to that the IMAX size of the screen, well, it was almost too much to take. But we managed.

The Ugly: OH MY GOD. The kiddo in the movie flips the bird, and there are MULTIPLE utterances of the word A**. It's a PG movie, sure, but the violence alone would do that - shooting and fighting and a fish tank gone bad. But man, was the swearing and finger gesturing necessary? Hopefully me kids didn't notice - Tom nearly choked when he saw that middle finger come out, but hopefully none of our kids will bring that finger to school. (Double crossing my fingers on this one!)

Otherwise, it was a fantastic movie, and I'm sure we'll see it again. But next time, not in an IMAX. for that matter, if we do go again, we'll get there really early, and we'll certainly choose a less sensory stimulating movie than this one.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

We procrastinated and it kicked us in the butt

A storm is coming, and this time we are prepared. There's a front headed here as we speak that has tons of rain and high winds. But in contrast to the last storm, we have two functional sump pumps, plus a portable back-up just in case one of the first two fails.

The reason that I mention this is that a few weekends ago, we were up until almost three AM attempting to rescue the basement from imminent doom. You see, we had only one functioning sump pump. Since we're in a rental and had survived one rainy season without said pump, we figured that we'd be OK this go round. Man, were we wrong. Let me explain why.

One gloomy Sunday afternoon we headed off to the pool for a swim (That's where you go when it's pouring rain outside, right?). We were there for about three hours and then headed home. At some point Tom wandered down into the basement and discovered a flood. So, we kicked it into high gear, got the kiddos in bed quickly, and tackled the problem. Long story short - we spent the next seven hours sucking up water, pulling up the carpet and the very wet pad, sucking up more water, drying towels that were used to suck up water, watching the radar on the Internet, and trying to figure out how the heck to deal with the incoming water with a well that was full and a wet-dry vac that was smoking. Our big problem was a cell that was heading our way at about 1am. We were tired but had basically stayed ahead of the water for most of the evening, and didn't want to lose the entire basement carpet as we had saved it thus far. So we decided to stay up and do what we could.

Our biggest problem is that the pump broke almost a year earlier - it actually hasn't worked since we moved in. This was a case of procrastination NOT paying off (No, Tom, it DIDN'T work this time). Anyway, when you call the plumber in the middle of the night asking for them to show up with a sump pump, they politely tell you that the plumbing supply place is NOT open at 1am on a Sunday, and that because of the flooding over the past few hours they have none left in stock. They also tell you that they would be GLAD to show up in the morning and get you all fixed up, and we tell them that we'd LOVE to see them then. I'd like to point out here that we live in the land of the 14 hour Walmarts, Targets, the 12 hour Home Depot, and the city that rolls itself up at about 9 on Sunday. This made out night VERY LONG because we couldn't go buy anything at 1am that would have helped us.

So, Tom hit Home Depot at 6am (three hours after we went to bed), the dryer ran all night, the rain stopped at about 3am, and the plumber came and fixed the sump pump at 11am. Then, the rain started again and it rained for three days, but never quite as heavy as that Sunday night. Oh, and did I mention the part where Tom leaves town for a week on Monday? Yeah, tired man on a plane, and tired woman left alone here with a damp basement and wet carpet. (I rented a commercial dryer, hired folks to replace the pad and reinstall the carpets, and had it cleaned. No toys were harmed in this flood - and we have a clean carpet!)

So I sit here now listening to the thunder rolling in, knowing that the pump, both pumps actually, work. AND I sit here knowing that I can go to bed whenever I want and my basement will be high and dry in the morning. Makes me smile - to myself of course. Don't want to be TOO obnoxious, we wouldn't have had this trouble in the first place if we hadn't procrastinated.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Two More Days!

In case you weren't aware, there are only are two more days until Speed Racer opens up in theaters. THAT'S what's occupying the brains of my little men these days. They have been counting down, tracking, planning, and getting worked up over this movie since they first saw the preview. No putting it on the calendar this time - they are very verbal about it though, and are continually reminding us and asking if we can see it on Friday when it opens.

The cool part is that the IMAX Theater at Udvar Hazy is showing the movie on the IMAX screen! HOW COOL IS THAT???!!! I know, I am a big giant nerd. But I am totally buying into what these three little men are selling. And yes, we'll definitely see it this weekend (but don't tell THEM yet - I can't handle the screaming and jumping around!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008


This is from the USGS Website. We live all of about oh, ONE MILE from the epicenter. Would have been exciting except for the fact that a) we weren't home, b) I've slept through MUCH larger earthquakes than this in California, and c) it was a teeny tiny earthquake (1.8 magnitude). So, here are the details - not quite as exciting as one might think.

Earthquake Details
Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 17:30:23 UTC
Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 01:30:23 PM at epicenter
38.828°N, 77.234°W
10 km (6.2 miles) set by location program
2 km (1 miles) WSW (250°) from Annandale, VA
3 km (2 miles) NW (320°) from North Springfield, VA
3 km (2 miles) SE (143°) from Mantua, VA
6 km (4 miles) NNE (32°) from Burke, VA
12 km (8 miles) WSW (242°) from Arlington, VA
21 km (13 miles) WSW (244°) from Washington, DC
Location Uncertainty
horizontal +/- 1.7 km (1.1 miles); depth fixed by location program
NST= 6, Nph= 13, Dmin=70.2 km, Rmss=0.3 sec, Gp=151°,M-type=duration magnitude (Md), Version=1
Lamont-Doherty Cooperative Seismographic Network (LCSN)
Event ID
This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.

EEEK! Mosquitos!

We've been hanging outside more over the past few days due to the incredibly beautiful weather here. But so have the mosquitos - and there aren't just a few of them. For some reason the mosquitos have bred like bunnies this year. They are in the trees, the grass, on the deck, even on the walls of the house. They seem to just be hanging out everywhere. Before we head outside we have to coat ourselves in bug spray, not really a big deal. But the bugs still fly in our faces, land on our arms/feet/necks/legs, and try to fly in our mouths and up our noses (yes, a mosquito tried to fly up my nose). But our big problem with mosquitoes is that we have kiddo that's allergic to them - Sam gets hives when bitten. So it becomes even more critical to prevent those darn bugs from getting to Sam. We have the Off! Power Pads that cover a decent area, but Sam and the other two are all OVER the yard, so it only works for a smallish area mainly on the deck.

I had pretty much had it with the bugs up my nose and having to come in early to avoid them, so Tom grabbed us some mosquito killer spray when he ran out tonight. Right off the bat I knew it would work for us - there's a warning on the can that says not to spray it near your car if you are using it in the garage - so it HAS to kill those pesky pesks. Well, tomorrow will tell - I coated all the obvious spots with the spray, but here's to NO MORE MOSQUITOS!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Boys are gross - really gross

They wipe their hands on the LID of the toilet seat.
And this toilet seat was only installed the day before.

They leave their electronics everywhere.

A peek under the kitchen table after the very first meal of the day.

No wonder we're on our third Swiffer Vac.

The Scaredy Cat

Our cat Bunsen has a hsitory of being terrified of any service or repair folks that come in our home. The babysitter doesn't scare him, the mailman doesn't bother him, but he growls at the bug guy and the UPS guy when they come to the door, and he cowers from everyone else - plumbers, electricians, A/C guys, and now, the carpet guys. Well, the carpet guys brought a big loud hose that snaked through the house, but the cat never even came downstairs. He hid under our bed (ignore the dust bunnies - he cleared a bunch out when he emerged):
and he is resting safely here now:

Years ago he climbed the stairs to the attic when the A/C was bring repaired, and it took cat treats, bacon, and about six hours to get him down. He was so freaked out that even after the repair guy left he was too scared to come down - talk about a scaredy cat...but we love him (and now we have clean carpets in the basement!)

Friday, May 02, 2008

Smells like love...

Ian: Mommy, these flowers smell like love.

And my heart melted.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

My Watchdog

Periodically our cat Bunsen starts to hang out near something - a corner, a closet, an appliance. Most of the time he is chasing what we call "carpet snakes." A carpet snake is a common creature, found only in homes where crazy cats live (that's basically every cat out there), and runs under the carpet, wood floor, rug, pile of clothes, or whatever else it feels like. A carpet snake is an elusive creature - having never been seem by a human - ever, but they are hunted ferociously by the crazy cat.

But there are times that I wonder - wonder if he's seen anything under that stove, behind that closet door, and you get the drift. He's been stalking the wily carpet snake for a few nights now - under the stove this time, but I'm wondering if it isn't something more. The last time he took up station in one spot he hunted up a mouse. Here he is doing it again. And that's a bit creepy.