Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Sorry so long...

A lot has happened since...oh I don't know June! Ha! Well, I may not have time to catch you all up, but I did want to say; on our way home from school yesterday we spotted pieces of a climbing play gym in someone's trash. We made the loop and stopped to double check that it was ok for us to claim it. No one answered though they were clearly home. Since it was taken apart and very dirty, and it was obviously in the trash spot, we loaded it into the trunk. Turns out it is a Step 2 Kangaroo Climber priced about $100 regularly! Yahoo! Now that is a find.

We are enjoying having hubs working from home. M is doing tremendously in school! Still have to learn to tie our own shoes...but that girl LOVES math. W is growing like a weed and is soon to start potty training. My how the time flies! We have recently enjoyed a visit from the Young parents and a vacation at the beach with the entire FOO of Hallquist's and their offspring! Looking forward to some immediate family relaxation and interaction time. On that note...I'll bid farewell.

Check out the link of mine and M's find: http://fleetfarm.com/catalog/product_detail/lawn-garden/outdoor-play/swing-sets/step-2-naturally-playful-kangaroo-climber?utm_source=googleps&utm_medium=shopping%2Bsearch&utm_campaign=google%2Bproduct%20search

Friday, July 09, 2010

Home Alone

It is rare that I am ever home alone. EXTREMELY rare. Other moms and dads know this feeling...and I'd venture to guess moms even more than dads. Now let me clarify. I am not alone. My barely 2 year old son is upstairs in his crib trying to fall asleep, but my 5 yr old daughter is on a special date to the planetarium with her dad, so I have this sweet quiet moment of "me" time till they get home.

I hooked up my ipod ready to let her rip so that I could use the "me" music for motivation to straighten the den, playroom, and maybe make it to the dishes and laundry. I sense I'll head for that next, but while I have the brief moments to myself, I thought I'd update my blog and enjoy my music.

When it's just me I tend to gravitate to Death Cab for Cutie or Coldplay. When I was alone in the car picking up the kids (to and from the grandparents house) I found all these old CD's and just laughed and enjoyed The Cure, Tori Amos, Bob Marley...among others. Funny. I really dig some Martin Sexton too thanks to my hubs and our friends Jeff and Charay from Nola.

I'll give the super quick version of what's going on these days. The summer is truckin along rather quickly. I didn't prep for the summer like I did last year planning summer camps and vbs', trips, and such. We have been to a vbs locally and another at our church next week. We have not done a single summer camp, but we had planned to learn to swim...then M broke her wrist. She got the case off after 4 weeks this past Wednesday. She was dressed entirely as wonder woman. I mean from Head to Toe! Wig to boots. It was awesome.

The kids bdays came and went. We went to Birmingham and interacted with the inlaws and cousins. We watched fireworks. I have red hair now. Had it done June 20 something. I like it. It fades quickly but I like it...and so does my hubs. We enjoyed a night of Modern worship as a precursor for what's to come at church. LOVED it. One of my closest friend's sons was hit by a car, but thank the Lord he lived. Hashing through the mess of life right now with her. Praying alot.

Watched one of my best friends go through divorce, custody battles, and it still goes on. I thanked God a lot and prayed even more for my hubs today as he has to be enjoying his job...his dream of working for himself coming true. And the added perk of it being in a field related to his hobby and life long interest. Thank you God.

We had family photos made! They were awesome and I think worth every penny for the professional photographer...Jana Candler. Thanks girl! Gearing up for the joint Bday party/Gabba fest next weekend! It should be something amazing! Also gearing up for cousin camp. Only one cousin joining us for the week this year, but hopefully as the kids get older this can be a tradition that they all look forward to! We have kept busy with Dr's appts and trips out of town. After cousin camp it my settle down a bit, but then we only have a month to prep for school and our eldest going to K5...Yikes!

Gonna go get into cleaning mode and knock this out so that our Saturday can be a sweet family time free from house hold duties.

Lord, continue to walk close by us...or rather that we would walk right alongside you!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


W dropped his Muno, second favorite Yo Gabba Gabba character in Walmart while we were shopping. We retraced all of our steps never to be found again. He was a LOST TOY and hopefully found a decent home. But my little buddies birthday is in a week and we were hoping to complete his little plush toy set. Has anyone else seen the prices of these silly guys! Yikes! If my little man didn't love them so, I'd sell ours! To replace Muno the minimum price I found was $45! We never had Toodee, so we wanted to get her. We'll see about that. I did find a woman who handmade Muno and he looks awesome, so we may be able to get him that way. Having said all that, you can't even find party supplies for all that! I'll have to make them all I guess! Here's hopin!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Always Ask

I've been out to the couponing loop for a little while now. Really since the move. It requires more organization than I can usually muster if other things in my life are out of whack. But I have every intention of climbing back into coupon world here by the end of the month. So, having said that, we have been shopping mostly at ALDI. It's my go to place when a) even with the coupon it's still cheaper there or b) I don't even have time to think of coupons.

We are trying to make our lives, across the board, a little bit healthier. I'm not obsessed with organic this and that; cage free, grain fed... I appreciate it, but find that it can generally blow my budget out of the waters quickly! Still, we are trying to deal mostly with the large amounts of sodium that we and the kids are taking in and trying to help them make better choices with snack time and meal time. Tired of every version of cured processed meat that we can find. So, we are gradually weeding out those things and thanks to aunt Minnah, we are going to do a little deceptively delicious. I'll be working on purees momentarily.

All this to say...there were some staples that we needed from the whole foods nearby and I was also aware of their current "fill the grill" deal that included tons of hamburger, hotdogs, and ribs for just $20. So we were headed there to get that and any of the vegetables that ALDI does not carry. I lucked out in that they had lactaid on sale which made it regular price of anywhere else. So we got 2 of those. We did the fill the grill which saved us $7! I decided to ask before I got started cause I'm always getting really great coupons from Earthfare and we were going to have to make an extra trip to get those free items...but they have just started honoring those coupons that I have been receiving via email! Hooray! So, I received 6 free ears of corn, 2 free pork chops, and $2 off per lb. ribeyes...which looked incredible and will be a very exciting addition to our father's day celebration! I was so excited about my tons of savings from competitor coupons that made my trip equal in price to that of ALDI except that I got 5 meats, 2 specialty soaps for m, tons of veggies, and types of meal and flour, and the list goes on.

It's hard to save money at the whole foods store usually...certainly not in the way you can at Publix, but because I asked I was able to save at least $25 today using competitor coupons! Yay! On to the purees...

Monday, June 07, 2010

Took One for Team Mom


The Sun rose too early!
W was up before M!
I knew he had a dental appt at 9am a good ways away.
I knew a Dunkin Donuts was right across the street from the dentist.
So, little miss broken wrist got to choose breakfast and naturally chose Donuts.
So we throw ourselves together in a hurry...
3 people dressed.
No shower for me.
wash my face, brush my teeth, basic makeup and last night's outfit
diapers, wipes, blankets, sippy cups, xrays, purse
To DD...running late but that's ok.
W didn't eat much.
Neither did M.
Pack it up and make it to dentist in plenty of time.
Put M's temporary cast back on before play time.
She's pouting again.
W hates the dental experience.
We try the frozen yogurt...thinking yogurt is different then ice cream so his lactose issue may be ok.
We have to run home to get my phone which had been left behind, as I remember hearing that sound in the middle of the night of it falling off and under the bed. Forgot to retrieve it!
Supposed to be waiting on a call about the ortho for the cast.
Leave kids in car, in drive.
Retrieve the phone.
Sure enough...missed the call.
returned call and they tell me my appt is in 15 min. clear across town again!
We take the interstate, but let them know we'll be running about 5 min. late.
On the way, W looses his breakfast and the 2 spoonfuls of frozen yogurt all over himself.
We keep driving.
M sweetly soothes him...without touching him mind you cause she is grossed out.
We get to the parking lot, leave the car running so the air will stay on while we strip him down and dress him again.
Both kids are ready to go in, as am I, so I close the doors and go to open the driver door to turn off the car, but it's locked...with the car running! SERIOUSLY?
It took very little thought for me to grab up everything and the kids and head in for our appt.
I checked in at the desk, call J.
Thankfully, he didn't hassle me about it (he had no idea what had already gone on that day).
The woman informs me that I have to fill out paper work...even though M is already in the system.
Takes me a year to fill out the top form as I'm trying to keep W away from the doors the open automatically.
He was behaving pretty well actually...he's just almost 2.
He manages to slowly run into an old man with a wheelchair. Very slowly. And I caught it all in the middle as it was occuring.

The man completely ignores me as I apologize and check to see if he is ok. He doesn't even acknowledge me. Then he says to the front desk ladies that he has a sharp pain in his knee from where the wheelchair hit him and that in his day people disciplined their children!
Oh the things that I could have said! Like do you have kids? Were you the one taking them to their appts when they broke their limbs? Did you have to fill out 8 pages of paper work before they would even see you? Did you clean up the puke off of your children after their dental visit and before the casting and just before you locked the keys in your car while it was still running?! Thank goodness in my day there are cars and cell phones and moms that let stuff like this roll off their heavy laden shoulders so that they can confidently and with conviction raise their children.

Yes, I said 8 pages of paperwork. After I was 4 or 5 pages in, the woman rearranges what I have left saying that if I would just fill out the last 2 pages, they could get M back!
Really?! Could we have tackled that first! But she was nice and encouraging and said she could tell I was a good mom and that I was doing a good job.
Finally, we are back in the casting room.
M picks bright pink...of course.
W plays drums with the traditional round sitting stools for the dr.s and two long paper towel rolls he found in the trash!
After chasing his fast self down the hall a few times, I decide this is an acceptable activity.
J unlocks the car and gives my key to the front desk ladies.
We leave!
Get in the car.
Let M pick our free movie redbox...Alvin and the Chipmunks
and head home to eat.
We eat...nap (hallelujah)
I then use tons of left overs to make some pretty great stuffed bell peppers.
I'm in my pjs at this point, but m has asked to go to the cupcake cafe.
I get everyone ready again.
We get there and the cafe is closed.
Plan B...walmart has way cheaper cupcakes and Brobee shirts and Princess PJ's.
As we arrive we see the neighbors outside catching fireflies.
We share a cupcake with John Lake and M enjoys catching bugs with him.
Me and Kelly have easy conversation and J gets to meet the Sheriff her hubs.
So, a new relationship has begun to bud.
Everyone is asleep. Clean. No fussing with the cast.
And I have a new Mom story to tell about the day the man accused me of being a bad mother and have undisciplined kids.
Ironically, W was so good after all that! Ahhhhh.
Breathe out and breath in!
Goodnight and Happy Bday Grandma Katie!

Been a Whirlwind!

It's been a whirlwind couple of days! Well...I suppose if I were honest, I'd say more than a couple of days! Been a whirlwind couple of weeks!

Quick rundown has me recounting going out of town in the middle of the night with my mother to see my sister and her fam. Doing the Hallquist Furniture Exchange Program thing again. Thank goodness for it. I hauled a ton of furniture and reinherited some of it for a small amount. Thanks mom and mer and Geoff! Rain, a hotel stay outside of ATL. Luckily, my mom was late enough that I didn't entirely miss Uncle Patrick's visit! He is a bit like Santa...cause it is a bit like Christmas when he comes with presents and lots of food! Unfortunately, while I was gone the entire family came down with a fantastic cold that hubs is still getting over! Praise the Lord, that I didn't catch it when I got back! Must have missed the contagious period somehow.

You can imagine the state of the house when I returned with all of them being sick and having a guest. So, I've been desperately trying to squeeze major house keeping into the pretty full schedule that was last week. We were also blessed to find out that my local BF was awarded custody of her daughter after a bit of a battle! That being exciting meant that I had another child all week! The girls played really well together though...only got on each other's nerves a little.

Had our friends over, 3 boys, a mom, and a dad. Me and the mom got to it on the sewing machine while the dad wrangled the kids. Excellent birth control I might add keeping up with 6 kids 5 and under! We knocked out some fantastic chiffon panels for the modern night of worship. We had rehearsal Tues. for that, rehearsal for 4th of July stuff Wednesday, Thursday was a free night and J, the kids and I did the Mice on Main hunt and spent a little time mingling in the Thursday Night Alive crowd. We found all the mice...one was particularly tricky! But M had tons of fun.

W recovered from a weekend of illness and lack of sleep (dad had some trouble getting them to actually nap). We still haven't repaired his bed from that weekend I was gone as he apparently was jumping up and down in it and entirely busted the bottom out! Pack and Play is working marvelously. He has been pretty delightful. He's testing but often practices obedience which catches me off guard. He get rewarded for that behavior!

Saturday I was to appear as Snow White-like Princess for a mission outreach. That a.m. J had to run to ATL for a trade show where he was to meet some clients. The kids and I went to the park outside M's new school. No one else was there. No big deal, but seriously, keeping up with W who's now almost 2 is tricky enough. I'm quite thankful, really, that M is pretty much big enough to do most things by herself. Not the monkey bars apparently. She and I had practiced a few times and I had stood ready as she let herself drop off the bars. Well, she tried it herself when I was clear across the playground chasing W down a rock ledge. I hear her say rather calmly, "Ummm. Mom? A little help here please?" I let her know that I'm coming but I think she can handle the drop. No way I'd have made it on time. She held on as long as she could and says she just slipped off the bar. And fell on her bottom catching herself with her hands. She starts screaming! And says "I broke my arm!"

I'm all calm and reassuring. I don't think you broke it. Can you move this? Can you wiggle this? Your o.k. Shhh...the neighbors are coming out and watching. You're o.k. And seriously some passers by really stopped and watched the whole ordeal not that they came to help or anything. So we calm down and take some Motrin. We are going to wait till the drama passes and reassess. She wasn't herself, but I've seen her carry something pretty far, so we continued to wait the rest of the day. I had to get a back up for Snow White-Like Princess (Thanks B!), and J didn't get home till 7 that night.

M woke me up Sunday morn at 6 am! She must be feeling bad. She tells me its worse and it does look pretty swollen. So I skip church and prep to deal with the broken arm before rehearsal for the modern night of worship at 4. Unfortunately urgent care doesn't open till 1 on Sundays cause of the southern bible belt thing. We waited this long and avoided the whole ER thing...we could wait a bit longer. So we did. And we did the urgent care thing. They remembered M from the head injury/staple thing! The Dr. was awesome reminded my of my working days at Hales Pediatrics! They let her take home a real xray that was a discard cause they had to redo it. They cut off the name, but they said it's for her dr. kit. The Dr. said she felt certain M would be a dr. one day! I would be thrilled.

Temporary cast was a total drag and the sling! M was a mope the whole night. Bless it! It was real plaster and very heavy. Plus her med had worn off. But the night of modern worship was AWESOME! Loved it! And she made it through. Picked Moes for dinner of course and is now milking it for all it's worth! We've had cookies and cupcakes, popsicles! You name it! Xray revealed a nice break on one of her arm bones...close enough to the wrist that they call it a broken wrist. Which the Whirlwind had stopped then, but today was one of those mom days for the books!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Down the Commode...

Well, Lily has gone on the porcelain express. That didn't take long. I believe I googled the situation a few days too late. I was a little concerned when he/she was hangin near the bottom all the time. Apparently, Lily was constipated and thus lost buoyancy. Always was a greedy little gal when it came to the food. I'll be prepping for a water change and tank cleaning tomorrow. Just what I need to be worried about with the in laws coming tomorrow afternoon and a spa party on Friday night. Eventually we'll have to get her friend, Philly, a new buddy so they can join in the fraternal bond of tank hood.

On a side note, my shoulder and neck pain is back. A few visits to the Chiro helped, but I don't have the cash flow those guys would like for me to sign the plan! Ha! Will be doing further research for other options to remedy my issues. Oh the joys of getting older.

Had a wonderful time enjoying M's Music and Missions performance/presentation tonight. I do think my favorite part may have been the procession in while playing kazoos! Pop would have been proud!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Busyness is one of my least favorite things. Don't get me wrong...I understand the idol hands make idol hearts thing, but I don't like to feel like my time is not my own. I have been trying to maintain balance though my scale seems to try and tip in the direction of busyness now and again. So, pray with and for me as I attempt to do God's bidding, fulfill my duties with and for my family, maintain a business of my own, and find time for sanity and Gini maintenance.

Today was Tuesday with M. One of our last, sadly, and I had to spend it almost entirely dragging her from store to store in search of spa and rockstar supplies. I had to use the easy time...the time w/o W for collecting party supplies for my next 2 parties. This spa party is going to be awesome and not too expensive. I managed to find supplies for 9 foot baths at the dollar tree. I gathered up numerous favors at Wilson 5 and 10 and the dollar tree. Such neat ideas really.

Of course, M and I went to Moe's! It's her favorite! She also purchased a mouse costume at Wilsons. So she wasn't entirely bored. We rented where the wild things are...which I don't really recommend for any kid. The material was all too grown up and depressing if you ask me, not to mention that it sort of encouraged animalistic behavior in children w/o and resolution to the issues portrayed. M barely watched it and though I thought the costuming and such was fantastic, I found myself struggling to pay any attention.

We had a New Orleans supper, and played together, cleaned together, and the kids are in bed. Time enough for me to blog, write up a letter for a friend, work on some business related administrative stuff and sew up some shoulder heat packs for the party! At least with all this spa stuff, the downstairs smells very soothing and relaxing!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Much Needed Update

I've been a blog slacker for some time now. I do wish I were better equipped for posting cool pics and what not. At this time though, there are still some boxes that haven't been unpacked and I have no idea where my ancient digital camera is and its connectors that make me capable to post pictures here. (My husband would be rolling his eyes at this moment...surely thinking of 8 million other ways to post a picture that I am completely unaware of). Still, it is what it is.

We have moved in to this lovely house...mostly. I'm very annoyed that I may be like Elastigirl on the Incredibles calling my hubs at work three years later to celebrate finally unpacking the last box. There is still an entire room that, although it is no longer empty, it is a useless space except for storing stuff we haven't dealt with yet. There is furniture to be had via the Hallquist furniture exchange program (something my hubs gave name to years ago), but that will require a trip and a u haul. So plans must be made and money as well.

We have already had numbers of visitors and plan on more to come here soon. Mom and Dad, Aunt Minnah and Cuzin C. My brother and his fam are to come this weekend if we all stay well. And my brother in law is to come at the end of the month! We have had dinner guests on 2 occasions, and I am trying desperately to get the place in some semblance of order so that I don't feel like the world's worst hostess while I force myself out of my little bubble and do a bit of entertaining. The thing with entertaining is that I am no great house keeper. If I could afford one, I'm sure I'd hire a live in house keeper. When I take a day off from everything else just to get work done around the house, I'm busy ALL DAY and I usually don't even make it to the shower or out of my pj's...and the house will still look like I've barely touched it. I haven't figured out if this is just some weird curse I have, or that I'm just a terribly unorganized slightly ADD individual, or what...So inviting guests over terrifies me, cause they really should see my house the way I imagine it in my head. The way I hope it will be one day!

Now all of us with 2 preschool kids (or more) understand that this "one day" means when the kids are grown and even possibly out of the house! Still, I'm allowing God to stretch me in this way!

What else...I have dubbed Tuesday "Tuesdays with Mercy" because this is a day when W is in school for a good portion of the day and I get to just be with her. I have treasured these days more than I can put into words...and she has too. Last week I asked her what things can mom and dad do that really let her know we love her. I was just asking her about her love language. She said basically gifts and physical touch. This has already helped me to connect with her a little better! And today was such a great mommy and me day! And we hardly did anything of significance.

We had a scare with her best friend being taken without permission for 10 days from her mother. Long story that probably needs to remain basic at this point, but it really allowed M and I to learn more about prayer...and the results of a life lived without concern for God. Hard lessons for a 4 year old. But none to avoid as this is a special child we have been keeping for 2 days a week all year.

On my front, personally, I'm loving what God is doing in my heart regarding worship! This has always been a fantastic love of mine, but it has gotten stamped and stifled on various occasions, the most recent being injuries inflicted by "Christians" and church members. In obedience, I have begun to get involved again in a local existing church through the music ministry. Those of you that know me, understand that this is the easiest way for me as music is an essential language to my heart and mouth. So, I'm singing in the choir, and out front on occasion...and just throwing it down at God's feet. LOVING it! But more than that the intellectual and theological (philosophical) fire that really gets me going is welling up. With the introduction of a new service...I'm in my element. So many things that I have studied and even experienced before...and longed for since. It will be fun and challenging just to be involved in the creativity and conversation surrounding this new thing.

I'm sure there is more, but this post it long enough if you ask me.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Still unpacking

Been an interesting time these last few weeks. Trying to unpack and keep to businesses running. Started home schooling. Went without air conditioning for a number of days. Now we have our first house guest!

Aunt Minnah and cousin (baby) C came to visit! We've been having so much fun teaching the 2 little ones about sharing. Cousin C has gotten an eye and earful of each of my kids! They are loud. W seems to be understanding more and more! Which means he knows what he should do...so the limit pushing has begun. I need to say that I think he's doing quite well! Been fun to hear him talk lately too! He just all of a sudden started piecing together strings of many words into sentences! The first sentence that I recognized obviously was "I don't wanna get in the car!" Every word! And it has taken off from there. It is so nice when your child can verbalize what they need or what is frustrating them! Here's to many more sentences to come!

M is having a little bit of issues adjusting. She loves home school in some ways and misses the surrounding of lots of other children as well. She thinks Mrs. Crown is the best teacher EVER! Funny. It goes rather quickly and I'm looking forward to our trip to the planetarium on Friday night.

We are still constantly trying to find things that are temporarily missing! I assume the few boxes that have remained untouched must house most of these items. We are also laughing at the bare rooms. We enjoy the simplicity of it, but will eventually need some furniture pieces here and there. Ah the space! We have really enjoyed the outside backyard! We do have a bit of bugs, but seem to be managing it ok...except for M who literally covered every inch of her body or skin with some type of clothing just to be sure that a bee or flying insect didn't sting her! Funny. Ah the pics are on hubs phone but that would certainly be worth a post! Can't wait to be settled! But even these things take time...

Off to enjoy my sister's visit. Will post more later...and work on some pics hopefully.

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Post You've all been waiting for I'm sure...

Just kidding. I'm sure that you weren't all waiting on pins and needles for my next post! Haha! Still...we have officially moved. Are we free of the old house yet...no. We have got a bit of cleaning and work to do before we turn in the keys early next week, but today we got a truck to get the last of the things moved to the new house.

LOVE the new house. So spacious! Love the quirkiness of older homes. So many built ins we don't really need drawers or book shelves! I love the smaller fenced yard. Plenty of space for the kids, but fenced securely enough that I don't have to be a nervous nelly when they are in the back yard. Love the fire place! Nice ambiance! One room is almost entirely empty cause we have no furniture for it. Ah the possibilities!

But in the midst of it all...just before the move we were sick...and I mean really sick, for 4-5 weeks. Pneumonia, stomach flu, norovirus, multiple ear infections for various family members... It's a miracle we got moved at all. It was very Katrina esque the way we had to throw stuff in boxes and into the back of a truck all basically in the same day. The only difference was that we got to come back for the rest later.

If it's going to happen, it will happen to us and thus W broke out in hives all over monday and tuesday...either a dog or chocolate. So now we get to fork it out for the allergist after all. Today, while we were moving and at a friends house, M fell off a ladder to a bunk bed and hit her head on a chair! One staple later, we thank God for urgent care cause it was fast and much less expensive than the ER! To top it all off, Jason is having some pain that we think my be a hernia! Lord, thank you for giving us relaxed and easy spirits! Cause even now I am slightly amused at the timing of it all! And yet He has seen us through and we will surely laugh and marvel at all of this even more later!

On an I LOVE THIS HOUSE note...I used the dishwasher the first night I got here! I moved dirty dishes! haha! I have since used it 3-4 other times and am loving the ease and less time consumption of it all! Yay for the fire place, the dishwasher, the backyard, the built ins, the dining room, J's office downstairs, and the multiple bathrooms! Funny though that I have the same exact oven and stove as my mother in law, and my cookie sheet didn't quite fit! So now we have acquired one just a bit smaller and have made 3 dozen cookies so far! Be glad to get this place organized and everything in it's place!

As if that weren't enough, in my PartyMe Princess Biz I debuted 2 new princesses in consecutive weekends, which means I had to do multiple fittings and sewing to complete each costume on time. And a singing telegram this weekend as well! Yay for business, but I definitely should have taken a couple of weeks off for the move.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Coolest thing...

I just found the coolest educational toy at Goodwill! For $3 I purchased a set of Boomwhackers that came with a carrying/xylophone case, the octave tube cap, and the set of mallets. When I looked online, these items were all to be purchased separately and equaled a total of $62.94 w/o tax! This is perfect for teaching music to a little girl who seems very interested in reading music notes and rest at the moment! What a find!

Friday, March 12, 2010

You Won't Believe

Well, if we are going to get it...I mean, not only did I have the norovirus 2 weeks ago on the weekend my kids were at their grandparents (you know when I was supposed to be having "me" time!), the following weekend we were all to go to my hubs parents. W and I had to stay behind.

I went to the Dr. that Tuesday, W was in the Dr's office that Thursday, got a fever that night. Ended up going back to the Dr. Sunday. He was diagnosed with bronchitis, and a bad L ear infection. M and her dad went to the grandparent's in AL for the visit. W and I had to stay behind. They were monitoring him for pneumonia. By the time M and her dad got back from being out of town, she was starting to sound pretty bad. Her cough moving down into her chest and her ear "itching" as she often puts it. Tuesday we were in the Dr.'s office again with M. Ear infection. Omnicef...same as her brother. They listened to W's chest and checked his ear. Still pretty bad as ears go. Chest sounding clear.

W had a rough day on Wednesday. Thought all the bad diapers were from the Omnicef...that can be pretty rough on their systems. Good thing I didn't send him to school or Mom to Mom child care. Turns out he had a 24 hour stomach bug. And it turns out we all got it! Hit me and J within about 1 hour of eachother. I suddenly felt dizzy and weak...and later the usual 24 hour bug symptoms unfolded. Not the best time to have one bathroom, but it worked out. J and I had to spend the night up and down and the day laying mostly in the bed. The kids were great! And lucky for M she hasn't caught that bug. J and I seem to be coming out of it! Whew! But with so much to do between the princess parties tomorrow and next weekend, and the packing for the move that is supposed to be happening next week. This should get interesting! I hope we can avoid any further sickness! Yikes!

Went for W's Thursday recheck and his ear is still pretty bad...probably caught the stomach thing at monday's dr. visit. And they have scheduled him for another follow up this thursday! I'm tired of visiting the Dr! Sheesh!

Friday, March 05, 2010

Staying Behind

Well, I'm mostly better. I have residual stomach discomfort and a lot of sinus stuff, but I'd say I'm almost back to my old self. W, however, is sick again. I took him to the Dr. yesterday with the explanation that I figured I was about a day or two early, but that our plan was to go out of town. I was right. I was just about a day earlier than I would have normally gone. Last night, he started the fever, and just by looking in his eyes you could tell he didn't feel well. So, W and I stayed home from our trip.

I am glad that M got to go. She, too, was a little puny, but nothing compared to W. I sent her with a bag of meds just in case. Hopefully, it'll be no big deal. So, we are here. I was also hoping to get a ton done today, as hubs and M were to roll out 9:30 or 10ish. But at 11 I was just getting them out the door. All the cleaning I'd hoped to accomplish during w's morning nap was left out when w's nap got left out. After they left, I had to quickly throw myself together (which wasn't pretty) and throw together some of the errands I needed to get done by around noon. On my way to the errands, I got a last minute phone call that I was needed after all to keep the extra child (which I normally do on Fridays anyway). Detour to the school to pick her up and take her on my errands. Then to get W's meds and some food and home. W slept a bit in the car thank heavens, because he completely avoided his afternoon nap. Thus, I now have him down to sleep for the night before 7:30pm. He's coughing it up, so I know he isn't sleeping yet. Poor guy.

Actually, I just went in and checked on him as it got quiet. He is sound asleep and breathing. His cough sounds pretty bad actually, and so I'll be keeping an extra close eye on him. Hoping to see some progress in the next day or two. As for me, maybe now, I'll have the chance to finish the cleaning I was only able to just touch on earlier today and then watch a movie I rented! Hmm... Sounds good to me.

I just wish he were feeling better, cause a mother son weekend could be so fun especially as the weather is getting nicer. Just not sure with his being sick that the weather is nice enough. The wind can really cut ya right now! Miss my family already. Enjoy a bit of a break though, since my last weekend break was cut short due to some weird flu bug!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Out a while

Been out a while. I didn't forget about the crock potting, ladies, but sometimes life smacks you on your bottom and you gotta take a minute to get it together before you can pick yourself back up again.

Today I'm picking myself back up. Almost fully recovered from some strange stomach bug...I won't go into detail for the g rating on this family friendly site--haha! But let's just say that my kids were with my parents for a long weekend, but I was stuck flat on my back in the bed from sat afternoon till just today. I ran necessary errands, but I wasn't really there! There were points when I really just wanted someone to take me to the hospital and hook me up to an iv and just give me a shot so I could sleep it off. Ah...but today I'm just about out of the fog that encompassed most of my "me time".

So no crockpotting till after my new trip that will roll out on Friday morning I think. I'm just going to focus on piecing my house back together after my being out of commission for so long. I'm going to go and enjoy choir tonight, and I'm going to spend time with my hubs a bit. And tomorrow I'm going to interview a new contract worker for the princess and the frog role. I'm going to clean and pack for our trip. I'm just thankful to be getting back to my old self!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Me time

In Mom to Mom, a support group/bible study for mothers, I was asked what do I do for myself on a regular basis. I really didn't know. I laughed and said I go grocery shopping. Now, I was at least half serious, cause all of ya'll know that I do love to do it when it involves the game of couponing and bargain hunting. But it does usually come with at least one child, so it can be a decent amount of work anyway. So then I said, Mom to Mom. That is my one thing I do for myself (and my family truthfully). As I thought some more about this question, I realized that choir also falls in that category...except it is just for me and my emotional / spiritual health.

But, as you read my blog, you will see that my kids are with my parents for the weekend! I haven't had a break like this in sooo long. So, after getting the all clear from hubs I have been working on some "me" things. Yesterday, I had my hair done for the first time in probably 9 months or more! It looks awesome! I had someone come and clean my house. I have a ton of laundry to finish and fold, but most of the dirty work is done. I tried to quit the gym yesterday (haha this is a reference to the episode when they attempt to quit the gym). I have been having a lot of joint / back pain and thus find it regularly hard to go--not to mention that this gym has no childcare which makes going 10 times harder. I was unsuccessful! In fact, I have a free visit with one of their personal trainers who specializes in injuries! That should be interesting.

This is not a bad thing, and truly is something that I can do for myself...just need to find time to go! Maybe he'll help me figure out ways to reduce the pain and what not! And today I'm headed for a massage (that will hopefully also help with the pain). Later today I'm sure to get that pedicure that I have gift certificate for! J wined and dined me a bit, as we went to a fun swanky little joint in downtown Greer for dinner, BIN 112. Those of you who live in this area...the atmosphere and pricing AND food of course are perfect for any date night when you want to take it just one step further than Texas Roadhouse or Ruby Tuesdays! Your getting the royal treatment, but the prices aren't over the top. LOVE it!

Of to the massage...wonder what else my day will hold...oh yeah, probably finding boxes, paper, and packing them.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Scratch That!

Well, today was going to be barbeque chicken for buns...but it turns out the kids are going to meet up with their Nani and Pop today instead of tomorrow, so that means that I'll either be eating on the road by myself, or having a date with my hubs. Either way, that is a no CrockPot ordeal.

Speaking of a day off! It looks like I'll be getting several, and that's just in time! Yesterday was the worst it's been in a long time. W was unbelievable. Hubs thinks he's been acting this way in part because he's super mommy-centric right now. Maybe there's something to it, but there is definitely something else. My only real guess is that he is teething and my other real guess is that he has been reacting to something we are feeding or exposing him to, and/or the shots.

His aunt says the Cuzin C is like bringing home an evil twin after her shots for upwards of 7 days! Yikes! I'd forgotten. We were so careful about splitting up shots and such. Now we are playing a bit of catch up to get him into school. Thinking about taking him to the allergist regardless of the astronomical price of those visits! Time will tell.

There was that moment (several of them actually) late afternoon / early evening, where all he was doing was flopping around like a fish and cry/screaming! When he would use words, I would try to accommodate, but even then he'd get mad about it. Nothing I was doing was right. So after several time outs for unacceptable behavior and the color of my skin turning red and blood pressure rising on my end, I just put him in his bed and pulled the door to. It's a safe place, I can only barely hear him screaming and I can get dinner made and pay attention to my other child who was very obviously vying for my attention in between his shenanigans!

When hubs came home I gave him the very basics..."Your son is in his bed. Believe me that was better than the alternative. Maybe you should go in there, cause clearly I'm not cutting it right now." That was it. So he did go in there and distract w. Oh to be a dad once in a while!

Thank goodness for Choir last night, cause M and I headed to church. Both of us were in brighter spirits just to be getting to make music! And be with people our own age that aren't screaming incessantly. He managed to sleep through the night again for the first time in days, though M appeared in our room twice last night drug seeking! Haha! first she says that her leg and ankle hurt (which is quite likely she's not usually a seeker), so I found some tylenol and sent her back to her bed. Then just as I dozed off she appeared right in front of my face asking for cough medicine. I sent her back to bed and reminded her that you actually have to be coughing alot to receive this med. Haha! I think that middle of the night interruption was more based on habit after being woken up in the mid nite by her brother for several days in a row.

Ah to sleep through the night with no interruptions AND to sleep in if I want, and take a nap if/when I want! It'll be short lived for sure, but I can't wait. Much thanks to mom and dad for this needed break!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Day Off

Oh how I need a day off in a bad way. But this is really about my CrockPotting. Wednesdays are very full. I rush to get out the door for Bible Study in the morning so I don't really have time to do dinner prep. Not to mention, that Wednesday night I have choir rehearsal, so my lackadaisical pace is squeezed not allowing for much dinner time. So, Wednesday is leftover night.

Seeing as my husband wasn't a big fan of either meals I prepared in the pot so far, I'll be making him chicken wings that are simply heated and broiled in the oven, and the rest of us will be eating leftovers. Back to the grindstone tomorrow. 2 recipes on deck for tomorrow. Barbeque chicken for buns and a side. So, I'll be taking the day off from actual cooking. More tomorrow I'm sure.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Laugh Out Loud

I titled my blog "Laugh Out Loud" because my original idea for it's title was so funny that I literally laughed aloud on the way to the computer! I was going to title it "Domestic Diva" but if you could see the state of my house after all the work I did yesterday, You, like my husband would surely have to ask, "so what did you do all day?"

Now women, you know that this question is like the no-no of all no-no's! And my husband has been made quite aware of this on numerous occasions over the last 8 years, yet yesterday, he dared to ask it. I want you all to be amazed that I didn't explode and go into a rant about all the wonderful things I do all the time that go entirely unnoticed. I simply said what do you mean. After careful conversation I realized he literally thought that the 2 dishes left in the drying rack were the only dishes he thought that I'd done. And we got a small laugh about it.

The house is pretty much a mess...I was going to list it as being in shambles, but that wouldn't be sooo accurate. It has certainly been worse. Actually what I did yesterday, hopefully, will go mostly unnoticed. I did the pre-spring cleaning sort through of everything in the kids room, and most everything in the play room. Anything they never play with or have outgrown went into trash bags. You understand that if it does go unnoticed, then I did my job. They obviously didn't notice cause they don't play with it and don't even remember that they own one of those whatever they ares. PLUS, if I were to engage the child in this activity (which we have been known to do from time to time) one of two things will happen. He/she will flip out over every thing and swear up and down that they will start playing with it or that it really is supposed to fit that way. OR sometimes, and this always catches me by surprise, she'll get overzealous and start putting things she does actually like in the going away pile!

On a side note, my eldest child has actually confessed to having nightmares that I forced her to give her blankie away to goodwill! Yikes! Though I find that terrifically amusing, i also see how it is a bit sad. Believe me I reassured her, that her favorite things would never go away except with her choosing. Then I assured her that if there ever came a time when she was finished with her blankie that mommy would still be keeping it for her because it is sooooo special.

I didn't intend to blog so long this a.m. My main point in getting on here was to encourage those of you who may feel overwhelmed or stuck in the mess that is known as your house. I don't remember where I heard it, but years ago I heard this message and it has stuck with me. When you are overwhelmed with you housework, put your household helpers to work. What the person meant by household helpers, were the dishwasher, the washing machine, dryer, crockpot...you name it. If it can be done by a machine...get that machine going. So, this a.m., my eldest is off to school, my youngest is still asleep due to a terrific tummy ache that kept all of us up a good bit last night. And though I'm blogging, my household helpers are up and running. If I had a dishwasher I assure you it'd be running. My washer is going. My oven has been used already, my coffee has been made, my dinner is in the crockpot...

Even with a cranky boy and a dr. visit on schedule for this afternoon, I will have a productive day. I'm determined.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I was right.

Well, the dinner was made and was delicious...the clean-up was so easy, I will easily cook the chicken overnight. M didn't like the lasagna either, but she tried 3 bites and even decided to try a tomato and some lettuce dipped in ranch. She ended up eating a pizza. AND w spit out the lasagna first, but then decided he liked it after all. He called it pizza soup! Cute. Plenty for leftover night and freezer. yahoo!

CrockPot Day #1

I almost didn't start this today, cause I had hoped to do a different recipe first, but hadn't managed to CrockPot the whole chicken in order to use the pulled chicken in various recipes. But since this is all I planned for my next 2 weeks worth of menus, I had to try something else.

Helen's Lasagna recipe from the Fix it and Forget it book. I have done this before, so I know that it is soooo very delicious. This will mostly stand alone and will likely feed us twice and still have half or so to freeze! yahoo! By alone, I mean I won't have to cook anything else, unless you count the toasting of the Texas Toast garlic bread that I purchased multiples of when it was on sale for 67 cents. I will include a salad as well and maybe I will cook or let M help me cook some cookies. Also bought for cents.

Tonight after I transfer the remaining lasagna into the fridge and freezer (used a liner for minimal cleanup), I'll crock pot the chicken overnight. Then I can de-bone it in the morning. This lasagna, though I know it is good, is a stretch, cause my hubs is not a big fan of red sauces of all kinds. As for mess making and cleaning up...not too bad. I will say, I'm not sure it was any easier getting this meal ready, than cooking on the stove and such. Actually, since you start with hamburger meat, you have to brown it with onion and garlic first. I ended up with 3 large dishes to clean. Which I did immediately since that is the easiest time to get it done. The trick with the CrockPot is not that all recipes are less hassle then other types of cooking, but rather that you get that part of your day done earlier. You aren't having to time things out just so, and such. And, maybe normal just before supper cooking time is not so great for my kids...they seem to need constant attention which translates into constant interruption and dinner that gets pushed later and later. Now that time can turn into mommy and me time! And dinner will be on the table when hubs gets home AND I will be calm and relaxed instead of rushing about trying to get it all done!

Maybe that's what's most important.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Ah, it's that time of year again. Seems like it's always that time of year! Just about spring cleaning time, and I have done 2 things over the last little bit to get ready. Friday, I sorted through all of M's clothing, current and next size up, to make sure that they all fit, that we didn't have 8 gazillion of the same things, and that each item either did have a match or needs to be found a match.

I have at least 1 whole garbage bag full of things that need a new home either consigned, given away to another, or goodwilled. That was all I could get done in the allotted amount of time. More of that to come I'm sure. I began W's clothes too. Made it through his current clothes, but not the spring/summer apparel.

Today, as it is flip flop weather, the whole family spend time outside playing on the swingset, with the new hula hoop, with a ball, cleaning up the 10 tons of litter that people throw out of their cars, and J filling in the well some more. Gonna need more dirt/gravel/clay for that one!
This is where the irony comes in. I NEVER clean up the litter that flies into our yard from the busy street! It didn't really take long even though there was alot because we all worked together. When we were all said and done, we came inside to wash off and have a nap. As I was washing my hands in the kitchen sink and looking out the kitchen window, there is a brown bag blowing across the street and into our yard. Good grief!

Next day of flip flop weather, we are going to borrow a rake and pick up and pile up sticks! What are your next spring cleaning plans?

On a side note, thank you Aunt K for the toothbrush rug tool! I'm excited about using it! Will have to get through the busyness of the next little bit till I can be appropriately set up to delve into that project.

On another note, I was shocked to see the bill on my last reciept from grocery shopping. As it is now known, I will be CrockPotting for awhile and have been working on my menus. So I tried to work with what meats were on sale and things I already have. But then I realized that I actually prepared for 2 weeks worth of menus, so I said an appropriate, "Phew!" and remembered that I'm right on target budget wise. Anyone else notice that alot of Aldi's prices went up a bit...new packaging as well, so I assume that is to be related.

Friday, February 19, 2010

30 Recipes of CrockPot Madness

Ahhh...nothing like knowing that dinner is basically already made as you are running your errands, doing your chores, playing with your kids. If you saw my post from earlier this week, there was quite a "mom" day there where in, literally, one of the best parts of the day was knowing that dinner was made! And as most CrockPot dinners go, there was plenty left over for another day and another lunch for me.

After that day and glorious realization, the very happy comments from my hubs who thought it was phenomenol, I decided I needed to do that more often! So I'm going to challenge myself to this task. Just 30 Crock pot recipes...that's all. Not too long, but of course you must know it'd be silly to CrockPot EVERYDAY as I would have more leftovers than I knew what to do with. I still may! Also, hubs has declared Friday, Fruity Friday and we are going to eat meals based primarily around fruit. So, unless I find a crockpot/fruit recipe (and there are some), my goal is to choose 3 main dish recipes a week and then 3-4 side or dessert dishes to go with it. This will require 2 crockpots, or likely I will just slow cook one in my large, deep casserole dish. Don't forget, there are those lovely liners you can put in the crockpot before you get to cooking to make the clean up sooo much easier.

My first 6 days worth of recipes will be as follows:

1.Meatloaf w/ potatoes with
2.Greenbean bacon bake

3. Poor Man's Steak (smothered-esque)

4. Roast w/ potatoes and mushrooms

5. BBQ Chicken for buns w/
6. Mac and Cheese

7. Lasagna

8. Sesame Ribs w/
9. Candied Sweet Potatoes

10. Chicken, Rice, and Broccoli Casserole

Still looking for a few more complimentary food recipes to go with some of the main dishes, but this should set me for the first 2 weeks. Today will be shopping day and then I shall begin shortly after that. I'll keep you posted!

Whew! Menu planning is alot of work, and just so you know, I chose recipes based on the meat that is on sale this week. Since this is enough to feed us for at least 2 weeks I won't have to buy meat again for at least that long! Now to match the menu to the grocery list! Yikes!

If I don't get to some of these, we'll try them the next week.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Another Induction into Motherhood

Ah, every woman who has been a mother for any length of time has had one of these days...

The usual can't seem to get anything done due to the constant demands and interruptions, began. No big deal...I can roll with it. Morning nap time is a perfect time for that. Since I just got my sewing machines fixed, I pulled one out and some almost finished outfits from my Grandma, Katie, and decided to get at least one project from the pile done...then a shower.

Of course, I did it exactly wrong and had to redo it, so the short project took longer than I had hoped, but I still had time for the shower. However, I didn't have time to fix my hair like I had hoped (with my new set of rollers). Got M, came home, ate, played with kids, then it was nap time.
I lay W down for his nap as he was bringing me his blankie and saying "sleepy", "rockery" (which means he wants to rock and/or rock and read. M and I were to lay in my bed. She was on absolute nap today due to her sassy, stinky attitude, which I was sure was due to exhaustion as she had tossed and coughed all night. We both slept. I slept a little and she slept alot.

I woke her early enough so that she would be ready for bed at a decent hour and let her watch a bit of a movie while we waited for W to wake up. When 4:45 arrived we decided to wake him up only to find him covered in throw up! Poor guy had coughed himself into a frenzy I suppose. Only thing is, he didn't fuss about it...And then he slept! Sheesh!

So of course I get him in the bath and strip down the bed and put it in the wash. But, as it would happen, he proceeds to poop in the bath as well. Good grief! Funny that hubs would call in the midst of this. Of course I didn't take the call as I had my hands full enough. When I called him back he wondered what I was up to that I couldn't take his call! Haha!

If I could say one good thing...at least I had chosen earlier in the day to crock pot dinner, so we still had nice hot dinner when he got home. The house was a total wreck, but food was on the table. Thankfully, I was able to get all the dishes done after supper, so I was able to see the bottom of the sink when I woke up!

Unfortunately my induction wasn't over yet. When I got laundry out after finishing the dishes, I found out that hubs had put crayons in his pocket! Luckily it hadn't escaped the confines of his pocket, but it did ruin those pants. When putting the kids to bed, as you can imagine, I fell sound asleep! I NEVER do that! Hubs woke me up when he was going to bed at 11 something...I couldn't believe I had slept so long! Oh well. I missed him and the whole night, but he said that was ok cause he was able to get lots of work done. We'll try again today.

I wonder how bedtime will go during lenten season when I give up naps! Hmmm...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

What to do, What to do...

I think we may be rounding the corner of this ridiculous illness. Whatever in the world it was...some type of sinus thing. Not ears thank goodness. M is at the stage where she coughs incessantly and if I hear myself or hubs say "cover your mouth" one more time I may need to check myself into the asylum. W seems to be finally beating the fever. Our thermometer has all of a sudden given out, so I can't be sure, but if he still has a fever when the meds wear off it is very low grade. This is a huge leap forward from what we've been dealing with consistently for the last 6-7 days. I can't really imagine fever for that many days. One day of fever really wears me out! Now he gets (and we get) to experience the residual side effects of a hefty antibiotic! Only 8 more days of that! haha!

On another note, we usually bathe the kids every other day if they haven't had excessive outdoor play or mud puddle episodes. Well, tonight would have been our night off, except that M decided to douse herself in vicks (not a bad idea with the cough) only it was a bit much and good portion actually ended up in her hair. And certainly you can't bathe one without bathing the other. W LOVES bathtime. So that is where they are now.

And yet another note, I was trying to clean the kitchen and cook. And though I'm not extremely short, I'm not really tall either, so their are many things out of reach to me in my own kitchen. This is not a fact I'm real thrilled with, but I don't seem to have many choices. I had a simple step stool that was specifically mine for the kitchen, but being that it was a kitchen necessity, it got very dirty. This item drove hubs crazy. He constantly tripped over it and thought it was unsanitary (which it likely was), so he threw it out in the yard to (supposedly) hose it off and clean it. Then proceeded to "accidentally" run over it. That long story to say that it is no more. I do have a step ladder that is a pain to get out, but is at least useful. I was trying to avoid getting it out, but also trying to reach things too high for me. I managed to drop a rather large and heavy duty pot lid on my head (handle down) and now I have a decent headache.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Now that's a SNOW!

Well, momentarily we are receiving an actual decent snow! If we weren't all sick I'd be entirely more excited about the possibilities and snow men that tomorrow will surely hold. I believe W will miss most of these festivities if his health doesn't improve significantly by the morning.

Actually, he is being delightful right now. Seems to be feeling at least a bit better. He has been so pitiful it'd break a mommas heart. Sitting around with weak eyes and congestion like crazy. Not to mention the constant fever. It would go down a bit with meds, but we would have to alternate them to get it to go down significantly. Then when they wore off, his fever would shoot back up.

Today was no different. Seemed lethargic and only wanting mommy. So we called the Dr. got new medicine and had to get out in the freezing weather to go the pharmacy and get this medicine. Since we were headed that direction I went ahead and kept going to Spartenburg to pick up my 2 sewing machine that were in the shop. Yay! Soooo glad to have my machines functioning again. Since December they have been out of commission.

W didn't eat any lunch, so I couldn't give him his new medicine. I finally convinced him to have some yogurt and gave him the medicine with that. He had a long nap and then ate a pretty decent supper, so I gave him his other dose with that meal. I'm hoping this helps him turn the corner tonight. I'm ready to see my little boy again.

J went grocery shopping! I would have loved to be a fly on the wall for that, but I couldn't have been more thankful as I certainly didn't want to do it in the snow with 2 sick kids! So no coupons and $50 later, he got everything on my list! Oh well for the $50...I guess we'll call that a convenience fee.

On the W front, we found him using the plunger and trying to plunge the toilet. Funny and disgusting all at once. Also, the kid dropped his blanket down a very precarious space between M's mattresses and the actual footboard of her bed. In his zest to retrieve it, he fell there himself and got wedged sideways. Lucky for him m and I keep a close eye on him and were able to fish him out rather quickly with only a tiny scratch on his face. Now if we could just keep him from climbing onto her bed in the first place...

...Time passes...Cookies were made (from scratch)...kids were put to bed...more snow has fallen

I just put a sweet fever free baby boy to bed! Hallelujah. So sweet to get to pray over your sleeping children. The blanket of snow here is pretty awesome and still falling quite a bit. Can't wait to see what it looks like in the a.m. Wonder about how the well will hold up. We had it filled in again on Tuesday...but it's been sinking a little since then. The snow won't help any. We certainly won't be getting anywhere near it. Well, time to enjoy the cookies I made and try not to fall asleep too early.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

400th post!

This is my 400th post. didn't want that to go by without at least acknowledging it...
Now on with my post...

I have blue ink ALL over my hands. Actually, I have blue ink all on the inside of my purse which is how it got all over my hands. How did I manage this you ask? Obviously a pen lost it's top and ink inside my purse without my noticing.

This a.m. has been a doozie. W is still sick and feverish. But M is fine. Congested, but able to go to school. Sort of. My car will be needing minor attention today, so the question was how do I make sure she gets picked up from school. Our ride to school is also sick with fever, so I'll be taking her this a.m. So I call the only other back up I have to see if she can pick M up from school. Straight to voicemail. So I text...no response. We get m ready for school, but don't leave till we know how to make this work. On top of that, I'm to provide a sweet snack for the party that is tomorrow...but they want the sweet snack today! Hmmm...

Back up plan finally texts to say she can pick M up. So I throw on clothes. Look terrible, but no big deal. Chances are we'll be late to school. As I get just 2 blocks down the road the gas light comes on. Sheesh! So I have to stop for gas. I try the debit card...twice in the freezing weather with lots of wind. It doesn't work. I forgot...we had to order new ones because someone stole our number when J was out of town. So, luckily I have cash in my purse and thus run in and get a pre paid amount. Since we are already sooooo late, we just head next door to the store, get a store bought v-day cake. Now we are really late!

Finally we get to school with the cake...but I forgot to tell them someone else is picking M up from school. Guess I'll have to call! When I got home I had to clean out the massive mess in my car due to lots of kids and errands...and food, in the freezing windy weather! Yuck. But, M has made it to school and has a ride. My car has made it to the shop, and W and I are warm and cozy in our house...resting. Hope I have time to do all the dishes that are taking over my kitchen!


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Sickness Be Gone!

Well, I just rocked a precious little one to bed upright so that he could finally fall asleep without being reawakened with a coughing fit. He was soooo tired! Of course the only time we could get to the Dr. was smack in the middle of what should be naptime. My goal then was to skip it and put him down early, but due to his illness, that was basically impossible. I would venture to say that by the time we made it home after the Dr. and the pharmacy, it was about 4:15? And it took him all of 30 seconds to pass out in my arms in the rocking chair. I let him rest for an hour. He woke himself up though with a coughing spell.

Like last night, he ate almost nothing. At least he's been eating during the day. So adorable though! He will straight up tell you what he does or doesn't want! Do you want some Green Beans(which he normally loves)? "No." "Waker" (supposed to be Water and pronounced the same except for the middle consonant). So he gets water. He did eat a bunch of orange and a bit of hot dog and crackers.

I won't blog long cause I'm anticipating a LOOONG night with the coughing spells and medicine that only lasts about 4 hours at a time.

M stayed home today too as her congestion was backing up into her eyes. I had originally scheduled a well visit for today to catch W up on his shots. That didn't happen and then on top of that we got to pay our outstanding bill and double the meds! 2 meds for each! Thank you Lord, though, for blessing us with the ability to pay it and the blessing that is is available to aid our children in their recovery. Hard to complain about having access to medical help when there are so many in the world that don't.

I am hoping and thinking that it is actually true that M will be able to go to school tomorrow. I'm hoping that hubs doesn't get any sicker, as he too appears to have this raging illness. I'm resigning myself to the fact that I will most likely not be able to prepare made from scratch cupcakes for M's V-day party on Thursday. I'll have to hit the store on the way to pick her up from school tomorrow. In addition, I have no idea if all this will even work out cause I have to have my car worked on tomorrow at some point. Hoping to get all of the "Hallquist" clan together at Mom and Dad's for Valentine's Day.

We'll have to celebrate our super romantic V-day getaway later...

Say a prayer for the sickness bug to be gone. Poor M has been sick with various types of illnesses for 3 weeks! W's been dealing with congestion for about as long and is cutting teeth on top of that. He had a pretty decent fever today of 101.6 after the Motrin! He was pretty pitiful today. I'm hoping he starts to recover quickly. Gotta get well so we can catch him up on some shots in order to enroll him in PDO (Parent's Day Out) once a week. He and I both could benefit from this. Eighteen/ Nineteen months is the age when the separation anxiety really sets in! Well add to that the fact that he has always been a bit of a Momma's Boy and you have a scene from Family Guy! Just hope the whole transition doesn't keep him sick all the time too. Oh the give and take of it all! Off to bed.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Crazy Times at Home

Well if it's gonna happen around here, seems like it will, and right now!

M is still having tummy issues, her brother seems to be teething and is amazingly cranky. On top of that he has taken to skipping his nap every other day. M doesn't want to eat much and I don't blame her, but she's doing well considering. I had a touch of it myself today but have taken it very easy and haven't eaten much. We shall see.

I woke up and my back was tight and tired...bet it has something to do with the fact that W is OBSESSED with me right now. I'd be flattered if I wasn't annoyed and didn't actually already know that 19 months is a very strong time for separation anxiety. When Auntie B came over the other day to take M to school, he seemed to think that I might be going with her somewhere (as is the case on occasion), and he started fussing, repeating "mama" over and over, and started pushing B. It was amusing. I still am experiencing headaches on a fairly daily basis. I also suspect some nightly teeth clenching...which would explain alot of things. The question is what's with the tension?

I think next week will slow things down a bit. I was blessed by a visit from B to watch the kids for a little during the day so that hubs and I could run errands gathering things to make this place more efficient and livable. I had lots of plans. Unfortunately, my plans were drastically altered when we went out to the car and noticed that the old well had caved in about 10 feet! Yikes! So off to the landlord's house we went...who knows when we'll fix that! We are due for another big rain Tues!

But we did manage to get to Target and find a fantastic buy for a replacement coverlet for our bed! We couldn't be more thrilled! The to lunch at Wild Ace in downtown Greer, and then home again to our lovely children. Best part? Auntie B had been the good cleaning fairy! I just love her! Not to worry, we compensated her for her generosity even though she would never require it! I'm seriously considering asking her over at least 2 times a month to help remedy the mess problem.

Funny moment came when she walked into the joint bedroom and found it trashed...not 10 minutes after she had cleaned it. M was to blame of course, but B couldn't believe that M had managed to undo her closet, dressup, drawers, and bed all in that short amount of time! I had to laugh and say, see...it's not that I'm a terrible housekeeper... On a side note, M redeemed herself in cleaning all of the mess up with very little help or prompting. She was rather proud of herself, as was I.

In addition to nothing going quite how I had planned today, we found out that we could now join the club of other Rosebowl attendees in that our de*bit card number had been stolen and used by someone multiple times at various CVS's in another state. Lucky for us the company flagged the card for suspicious charges. I wonder what tipped them off...the fact that someone was spending $50 at a time at CVS! You know I never do! Ha! So now we are cash only for everything till we remedy that situation on Monday.

So let's recap. Wake with headache and back pain...early! M still having tummy aches. W teething and all that comes with that. Someone using out card and therefore deactivating it for the entire weekend and longer. The well falling in, resulting in a rearranging of the errands we were going to run. Me ending up with M's stomach thing. The good things were; I got to spend time alone with my hubs however short it seemed, my house was lovingly clean when I got home, I got to rest (even though it was due to tummy ache), even though we didn't get to run all the errand's I'd hoped we did find an awesome deal at Target on a clearance coverlet and matching bedskirt and shams! So the goods and the bads level out a bit, but do leave us pondering what to do about this living situation that certainly doesn't seem to be getting any better.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Another Day in the Life...

What is it with Murphy's law? All the 15 minute increments in the day and as soon as I'm in the shower the doorbell rings! I knew this would happen. Yard men were coming some time today...no time frame given. Well, a girl's gotta get clean! Sheesh!

At least the yard trimming and such has now been accomplished! I swear for that cost we could have bought the tools and done it ourselves, but it is done and I didn't break a sweat! Since I was once again home bound all morning, I buckled down to clean. This is one of the necessities that housemom/wife just has to get over and succumb to its reality. I do indeed clean all the time. Not that the house is ever clean...fully!

But I got realistic and looked at the minimal amount of time I actually had to get anything done and decided to work one room at a time. Generally. So it was the kitchen. I had done a good bit of work in there yesterday, so I thought it might be easier to make a dent that actually appeared as if I'd done some kind of work. And I did. I finally organized and took care of nitty gritty things that I've been putting off in there. Still not fully clean as you can imagine! One or two more naptimes should do it.

W was so adorable today! I was going to have him skip that morning nap this a.m. as he had slept till 7 this morn, and then get my 2 and the friend that stays with us 2 afternoons a week down for an early nap this afternoon. But little man was saying "nap" and "sleepy" and trying to climb into his bed. I decided I'd better take the hint and put him down. It IS easier to get things done without any little person underfoot. But an hour goes by fast...

Veggie Tales, then naptime up on the docket. I definitely feel a nap in the works for me as well. And I got a package today! From my grandma Katie! she's cleaning out her sewing room and sent all the cutie things in the sizes of my children! I few things for me to finish with buttons and what now, but M is very excited. She's already put one on!

Then the tea party. M's home center now includes a working coffee maker (kids that uses water). So, the 3 kids sat down at the princess table from Uncle John, Aunt Connie, and Cuz B, and ate little debbie's and coffee "water" in their tea party set from one of hubs relatives. I think Gammy and Pawpaw, but I don't remember! She was so excited that this was her first REAL tea party. We will definitely have to do this again, with our tea hats!

Though I intended to actually try to fix my hair today, the yard men threw off the plan! I searched for the faithful Noodle hat and couldn't find it! I laughed off the thought that my hubs may just have discarded it so I'd get the hint, and threw this hair into yet another pony tail! Sheesh. I gotta figure out what to do about that.

I think I may finally get to take my sewing machines to the shop tomorrow! Can hardly wait to get them back! So much to do!

BTW, God has really amazed me and taught me alot about myself this week! Praise to Him for answering some very serious and constant prayers! And for those who faithfully prayed alongside me!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Keepin it Real

This is a post of somewhat random things that pop into my head from time to time. Don't try to make sense of them or overanalyze...I'm just trying to be honest and keepin it real.

I sang today...something other than The Little Mermaid. I actually thought it was pretty good. We are certainly our worst critics, but considering the round and round that I went through to choose, purchase, and practice these songs, I was kind of proud. I was a little anxious about it, mostly because I didn't want my inadequacies to get in the way of what God wanted to say/wanted us to hear. What a silly concern really...I could hardly get in the way of God's plan.

Sometimes I forget WHO God is. I forget that He isn't like me. Though Jesus was more like me, I forget that they (the trinity) were altogether "other"! And when I try to humanize them (unintentionally) it seems I limit them. I'm trying to be more aware of this and to avoid it in the future.

I have been having fairly consistent early morning wake up calls from my kids. Usually somewhere between 6-6:30 a.m. This is not early to some of you I realize, but it is an hour or more early for me. I know that it is because we moved the kids into the same room and the littlest wakes the older one up and then there is no turning back...but I'm a morning person, so other than being much tireder these days, I don't really mind. It does mean their dad is waking up earlier too, cause there is entirely too much activity going on for him to bear sleeping through it. Bet he's wishing he could find those ear plugs he misplaced.

On that note, I am a ton tireder than I am used to being and I am a little concerned. I know part of it is the lacksidazical way I have been exercising lately...not enough consistency. I am curious if I'm having iron issues, which is something I have battled more than once in my life. I really LOVE to sleep...and if not sleep, lay quietly in my bed with the covers pulled up around me. If I were in college, I would do exactly that...alot, but I'm a mom and a business owner and I don't have time for all that. I don't have time to get a lot of things done around here, so sleeping and lounging around isn't really a luxury I can afford on a regular basis. I wonder if I just need a break (little vacation for myself or with hubs--sans kids), or something else...life change. Who knows. But some thing I ponder none the less.

BTW, I didn't know that tireder was an actual word, but it doesn't appear to need spell check. Hmm. It really is true that you learn something new everyday.

I don't like my hair as of late. It's long...and though that's not my favorite hair do, I don't mind it so much. I think maybe I just need a reshaping? I just can't seem to do anything with it. In other words I wear alot of pony tails. Worst case scenario is the ball cap...and i seem to be wearing that far more often than I would like. My fave ball cap is blue and says Noodle on it (something about golf) which I stole from my hubs years ago and never returned. I have just about decided that this is the stage of life that I will likely refer to in years to come as the Noodle years. I wear my hair long due to my profession or business. It makes certain characters altogether easier if I use my own hair, but it makes wig wearing easier as well. Hard to conceal and contain that short hair.

My house is a wreck! Ever since I moved the kids into the same room the house went through the remodeling sort of upheaval and I have yet to entirely right the whole situation. Even after several trips to Goodwill. I seriously contemplated hiring a made for a few visits or months.

I miss my FOO (Family of Origin). Haven't seen them in a while. I'm not a real miss you when your / I'm gone kind of person, but I think I'm gearing up for a visit. Just gotta make sure my car is in good enough shape to go. I'm starting to get annoyed with the car actually. One morning the volume button was struggling to function. Today it was all I could do to get the children's CD out of the player. I did manage to retrieve it, but am not even thinking about putting something else in there. I don't think I really want to press my luck. Maybe I'll try it with one of my favorite ones, so that if it doesn't get permanently stuck, I will at least like what I have to listen to all the time.

All the randomness I can handle for now. I have to wake the kids so they'll go back to bed later. Bed time is the trickiest part of joint bedrooms.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Stormy Weather

Ice storms that is...yes we had some snow but it wasn't much fun for the kids as everything sort of melted together and made most any kind of play impossible. We did some exploration, some swinging, some stomping through the ice and into mud puddles...but not really any pics. We did take pics last night when the kids had a wild dance fest! Funny actually! I don't think I've seen M exercise so much in one sitting... Maybe she's ready for dance class after all.

I ran to CVS since it's across the street. I had some really great coupons that expired yesterday, so I wanted to get the deals, and get out of the house since we've been iced in all weekend. Here is the run down.

Starting with $3 ECB's...

Transaction 1:

Men's Dove Body Wash--out of pocket: $1.57
ECB's : $5.49

Transaction 2:

Men's Dove Body Wash
Colgate Max Fresh
---out of pocket: $1.50
ECB's: $7.49

Transaction 3:
2 packs of huggies
(used $4/20 CVS coupon but forgot ECB's)
out of pocket: $13.96
ECB's: $5

Transaction 4:
4 Ragu
2 Skippy pnut
out of pocket: .52 cents
ECB's (still have $5 from when I forgot to use it earlier) and $3 = $8

Transaction 5:
1 12 pack coke
4 febreeze fab refreshers
3 2 liters
out of pocket: $7.98
ECB's $10

Total visit spending:$25.53
Total Value: $98.29
ECB's: $10!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

New Favorite Things!

One of my new favorite things to do these days is buy groceries! Multiple reasons actually! You know me and my love for hunting the bargain. Well, with southern savers, this girl is now hooked on the oh so great deals of Publix and CVS! The couponing is going fast and easily. Something that once frustrated the heck out of me and took forever, is now easy and only takes about an hour or maybe just a smidge more of the entire week! Perfect to do during morning nap!

Today that is what I did. I prepped for Publix and CVS while M was at school and W was sleeping. I had already done the computer portion. checked the things I wanted and printed the coupons I needed that I didn't already have. yesterday, M and I sat down and cut out the computer printed coupons. She enjoyed the cutting and doing big girl things with Mom and she didn't even realize she was helping me!

So, during nap today, I organized. I looked up the coupons I'd need for the trip and cut them out, organizing them in an envelope with my list. I did this for both stores and put them in my purse. Since W had such a marvelous nap, we were going to make these runs together! This should be interesting and certainly aborted at anytime depending on children's behavior.

They were great! Thank goodness for carts that look like cars, buckles in the carts that look like cars, free cookies and balloons, a short list and a store I'm now familiar with to navigate rather quickly!

So here is the run down...

Publix: spent $25.54 (including tax)
saved $43.07

Aldi was out next stop...there are some things my kids will only eat from Aldi! Heaven forbid we ever move to a place that doesn't have one! So we stopped there and thankfully their prices are always incredible!

CVS: spent $13.54
saved $32.22
Extra Bucks for next time $3

Tons of freebies today too! Two 32 oz Gatorades--free, 7 bars of soap--free, TONS of stuff for less than $.75!

Great run today! definitely doing CVS next week as well for some freebies and ECBs on diapers!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Can't top the Diblets!

Well, no stories to top the Diblets today! sorry. Kids are fun aren't they?!

I have a brief moment here, so I thought I'd post. I've been up to all kinds of things. Mostly trying to get my home in order. Guess I got a jump on spring cleaning, throwing out, rearranging and what not. I started by moving the kids to the same room. This has been a bit tricky. But the room looks great! I lucked out finding some wall art stickers on clearance a walmart; a set that will coordinate with the existing color of wall (which is an odd teal color) for M and another set also on clearance for W! They are both thrilled.

After trying several different furniture arrangements, I was finally able to settle on one that is pretty great if I do say so myself. I even moved the curtains from W's old room right onto the window next to his bed in the joint room and it worked perfectly...except that I hung the valance upside down and with a staple gun at that, so it's permanent! The rocking chair fits in there, which both kids are thrilled about. M has a more grown up rock and roll theme going on in there. She didn't get her real stage with curtains and a microphone like she hoped, but maybe one day! And W gets Thomas the train! What could be better.

The playroom / eating space is still in the works, although that has been my main focus of late as the rest of the house appears to have been hit by the misplaced toy bomb. Today and tonight, it is my goal to find a place for all the toys (even if that means the consignment shop or goodwill for some of them)! Before I could have that room also house the eating space, I needed a rug to protect the carpet since our kids are horrifyingly messy and we only rent this house! I headed out to Old Time Pottery today with both kids. M had the day off for rest and recoup as she's not feeling 100%. I was hoping to get a big rug for about $40 or so. I was thrilled to find them having a huge sale for $32.99. Then I stumble upon a bin of 5 x 8 striped rugs for $10! Now don't set anything even remotely hot on this as I am certain this rug is made from recycled plastic bags or something and will melt into unrecognizability (not that I'm speaking from experience...first year of marriage in a tiny seminary apt.), but hey! the thing is $10 fits the requirement as food catcher for young kids AND as if it were definitely meant to be...the stripes are the exact color of the decorative items already in there! yeah baby!

So I tote home 2 kids, a large yellow plastic laundry type bin to hold stuffed animals and such, a large fabric remnant, a new funky broom and dustpan, and this huge rug! How I managed it was amusing, but more importantly successful! We came home and ate leftover pizza. Both kids decided to boycott nap for some odd reason (possibly the medicine?)...at least W finally gave up the ghost. I was able to stick M in my bed with a movie and get some of the actual rearranging done in that room, and now I wait till hubs gets home to move the table. Maybe, just maybe I'll have room for a dishwasher now in the kitchen! M has made it clear that she feels the kitchen needs a rug. I'm afraid that J (being ever so slightly clumsy and no small thing) is not a big fan of rugs however, as he finds himself stumbling over them quite often. That may be up for discussion when everything else finds a home.

Hmmm...and when do we think that will be? Not this week. There's just no way.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Diblets

You are now entering the realm of the Diblets.

The Diblets are tazmanian devil horse farmer cowgirls that paint the sky. They paint sun, clouds, and rainbows, but never rain because Diblets are scared of rain. They are nice and rather than make a big mess like your typical Tazmanian devil, they clean up messes! I have also been informed that they place people into trees in their beautiful nice forest with rainbows, waffles, and something else lovely and odd that I can no longer remember.

One Diblet sister wears an irridescent pink cowboy hat, flipflops, a shirt and leggings, and carries with her a foam sword. The other Diblet sister wears bat ears, a black tutu with gold glitter on it. a bathing suit bottom, a pink top that is dirty with various types of stains, and carries her pointer which is actually the arm off a doll she got for Christmas (guess which twisted Diblet sister is mine?!).

This is the land that our house has entered since having picked up M and her friend from school! Such imagination!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Mermaid Magic

And the singing telegram was a huge hit! I love being the mermaid! She looks so magical and sings such fantastic songs, and everyone loves her! Singing Telegrams are pretty great too, cause I make a little money, I'm forced to put my make up on that day, and they are quick so I can be back with my most favorite people in the world...my family.

The joint bedroom transformation is almost complete. There is a lot of organization that still needs to happen over all in the house. Most of the toys do not yet have a designated space in the playroom...so they are everywhere! I may tackle that some tonight if my working weekend exhaustion doesn't catch up with me. I'm so ready for organization and flow in this house...hmmm...sounds very chi or feng shui.

The children adjustment to their joint room is going pretty well. Bedtime is the trickiest, but we also took the paci away from the little man this weekend, so that's not really helping. Still, I can not tell you how much I LOVE having my house back. I can move around freely making noise and having a light on, and not have to worry about waking the little one. I even actually have more time to clean! That comment would make one think that I was excited because I love to clean...this is not the case, however I do detest the mess...so I suppose you can't really have one without the other. Unless you have an Alice (as in the Brady Bunch). That is my dream for a day in the future.

Off to put the other babe to bed...then maybe some organizing or sleeping. I haven't quite decided.

Tiny Tink

Well, I had a pixie party yesterday. It was really great! Me in a pixie fairy costume is a bit tricky. Sure makes me feel old and in need of a redo at the gym! Haha! Still it was a great party! The girls were fantastic! The games and crafts were awesome! Such fun and delight. And I even got to tinker and received a tip! I was able to take that tip and take my bff out to my fave Mexican restaurant for a girls night.

I am slipping back into my workout routine again this week now that things have settled down a bit at home. That should help my confidence level when wearing such tiny costumes haha! Now off to prepare a fun big breakfast now that all of my family is under one roof.

Wish I had the WHOLE day off, but I do have to be a mermaid later to sing for a little girl's fifth bday! Fun! Until later...

Friday, January 22, 2010


The waiting game is no fun, but what i literally just realized is that waiting often signifies anticipation. The only real alternative to that is waiting with anxiety, and I'm not the anxious type. God has led my family through so much where in all we really had to look and depend was on Him, that there really isn't anxiety left. He's got this!

So, I'm waiting...literally...on children to wake up. On a husband to arrive at the airport after being gone for a week. I'm waiting to see if my personal business is profitable. I'm waiting to save enough to buy a house. I'm waiting to see what's going to happen next in our life. And as I wait, I choose to see it as waiting with the excitement that anticipation brings.

I am waiting for the kids to wake up because when they do they are going to be well rested and ready to see their dad. I'm waiting to pick up my husband, and I can't wait to kiss that face whether he has shaved or not! I am excited to see how God pieces together the puzzle of our life over the next year to reveal more of his orchestration and plan.

I wait not impatiently but eagerly.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

in over my head!

I am posting when I ought to be cleaning. You married gals know that there are few things that husbands like more than a clean home. If that isn't true for yours, then you are lucky. Well, if I had a video cam that would allow you to peek into our home right now, it would remind you of an episode of the show Clean Sweep. It's not quite Hoarders material, but it looks like we moved in and then took all the boxes, opened them, and then dumped them out all over the floor in all rooms except the bathroom, and the kids room. The kitchen's not so bad...

All the dishes are clean, all the laundry is clean and swallowing the couch whole. I have redone the kids room and have to tackle the organization of all the other kids things that are all over the rest of the house. Our room will never be clean until we get the storage unit because of all the business stuff that is collecting in the vacant space of our room. The kitchen just needs a little elbow grease.

But...M is still awake because W is having a little bit of trouble adjusting to being moved into her room. And Thursday is the only time I care a thing about television...what to do. And J gets home tomorrow night. This could get interesting. On top of all that, I have two parties this weekend for the business.