Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas is Coming,...The Goose is Getting Fat...

Huh, well THAT'S not terribly polite...especially since my children have started calling me "Elephant Mommy", (no, I have no idea why) still it's one of our favorite Christmas ditties...so good enough for a blog title.

Yes, my pretties, Christmas IS coming...and right soon.



When things are going well...our Christmas festivities start on Thanksgiving. I'd like to say that there was some major tradition here...but in the interest of honesty...it's more because Thanksgiving is a REEEEEAAAALLLLLYYYY slow weekend here. November is full full full of stuff...various sports...my birthday...end of season parties...AND our family doesn't come into town for Thanksgiving so we usually take it as an opportunity to hang out in our jammies eating far too much food off of pretty plates and decorating the tree.



Bubba, while a willing participant...is not usually EAGER. So imagine my surprise when, the night before thanksgiving, he announced that we would be getting a new tree this year, one with lights pre-installed.

Now it should be said, Bubba HATES putting up the tree and the lights. He does it...but we have to leave the room for the grumbling. The girls and I usually go and mess up the kitchen or something until that "business end" can be finished. Then he can stop worrying about someone stepping on or falling over things or picking up things and swinging them around like a lariat...and he can find his "joy". Over the years I have often put the tree up myself, just to avoid the worry and crab-attack that follows. (yes, I AM a relatively kind wife ;) ) Though I suppose there is a certain amount of worry in that too, as I have to use the ladder and am perhaps the clumsiest person on the planet...but I digress.

So on Wednesday night nothing must do but we all trudge off to the local home supply store and gaze up at the trees that, in their showcase placement, soar 15 feet in the air. Did you know that MOST of them look pretty good from that angle? We decided that our current tree must be a 6 footer...and we'd like it a little taller but not 9 feet. This one has lasted 15 years...we figured it's an investment but we'd rather not have to sell one of the children.

Turns out they didn't have the exact one we wanted. So, AGAIN, imagine my surprise when Bubba was the first one up and dressed on Friday morning and off to another localish home supply center, in search of the elusive ONE that will fill our needs.

He was back before 11:00am...tree in hand. The gregarious gargoyles gallivanted to their peering position with many a "Daddy, why?" and "Hey Dad, whassat?" ...


When setting up a brand new tree it is difficult to concentrate when being peppered with questions so it wasn't too awfully long before they were banished..."GET THEE BEHIND THE COUCH!"


Once it was up, then the fun could begin...


Since the lights were already pre-installed, I think Bubba felt a little left out...so he decided to arrange the ribbon on the tree. You know, we've never had ribbon on our tree before...it's really quite pretty. However, I'm starting to feel a little less sorry for him about the lights all those years...I though it was me...I wanted too many lights...I find now that it is actually HIM and his artistic eye.



After it was all said and done, the girls settled UNDER the tree to sing and listen to a chapter of Little Women.



It's nice to be getting in the spirit...

See ya around...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Clear the Deck...

As I said, I'm TRYING to work on my "Yearbook 2009" video. Well, I AM working on my video...but I take, easily, three hundred pictures for every one that shows up on my blog...so weeding through them is an onerous, odious, o-boggling task. Scatter-shot, the amateur digital photographer's bane.

Last night, as I sorted, and cropped, and straightened, and sharpened, and SAVED (very important step) I noticed a troubling pattern. My counters are never clear. Seriously...if you wanna know how the day that I took the picture was going, look BEHIND my children.

Here is an example...


Bean had decided to make an "experiment"...it was late-ish afternoon, sometime between 2:00 and 4:00pm. After lunch but before my 5:00pm "clean the kitchen before I make dinner" time slot. Now the stuff on the counter in front of her is stuff she is working with...but I draw your eyes behind her...note to self, either change the "clean the kitchen" time or stop taking pictures in the kitchen until the ten minutes per day that it IS clean.

Here is another one...


This is from our Girly Trip 2009. We were dancin to Jim Croce. Note the counter in the fore-ground. See all those apparent "medicine" jars? Those were there on purpose; we had seven kids between us all taking the same vitamins AND several of them had colds...so our herbal cold stuff is right out in the open for any 'ole mommy to grab...still looks messy, but understandable.

HOWEVER, see those spritzy bottles...the blue and the pink? That's how I untangle Bear from her curls each morning. It would appear that we got too busy dancing to find a proper home for those...and yes, they were pretty much there the entire Girly Trip.

And those clothes...I don't know what they are or what, on earth, they are doing on the counter.

There are more...so many more...most of the pictures of my kids at the kitchen table are very telling too...next time you see one, look behind them. My kids "clear the deck" to the next closest flat surface, and you know what, I often forget to notice.

I had a friend many years ago named George. He said that he suffered from an ailment called "Flat Surface Syndrome"...in other words, flat surfaces were there to pile STUFF on, so pile stuff on them, he did. I never really thought about it, but I, well, my whole family, seems to suffer the same malady. And it REALLY shows up in pictures.

How embarrassing...

Here now, I was going to show you a picture of my kitchen clean...so I dug around for the pictures I took to show my counters to a friend...so the counters are indeed clear...
From 02.2009.Pics

But there is another flat surface here...one that I don't think will ever be clear except for once every couple of months when I get up there and clean it...yep, the top of the fridge.

So, there it is, my failing laid bare. Now, when you see my pictures you can say..."Wow, look at all that stuff"...but you won't have to say, "Wonder if she knows that's there?"...cuz now you know, I do.

See ya around...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Oh Bother...

Look at that...another month gone...very few pictures taken...no blog posts...

I blame Facebook. It's an evil construct that promotes instant gratification...and I've fallen to the 420 character limit too many times...sigh.

But do you know what this REALLY means? It means I've made all my holiday stuff harder. See, last year I sent pictures and DVDs at the end of the year as Christmas cards / presents. It was pretty easy last year...I had all these blog posts and pictures to help me remember. This year? Not so much.

And this year, for my birthday, Bubba got me a new fancy-schmancy DVD maker software...and I'm really excited to use it. But my inspiration is lacking. Guess I need to figure out how to power through it, because if I don't, that fancy-schmancy software would go to waste...and we can't have that now, can we?

Here is a little sample of what my new software does, all by itself. Being an old techie, I, of course, have not yet read the manual...but I DID do a wizard with some pictures of Bear's newest lost tooth... Look what it did. (56 seconds)

video

It comes off pretty dramatic...but it was just the template that I chose...what is funny about it to me is just how goofy she was during the TAKING of the pictures.

Alright...so what is the moral here? That's right...Facebook is evil...Self-control has been lacking and Stack needs to get a grip. I think it also means that ya'll are about to get more blog posts...maybe (how's that for commitment). But you definitely have the potential of seeing more videos. Note that is a potential...not a promise.

I hope you all are having a wonderful autumn and are looking forward to Thanksgiving...

See ya around...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Color Change...

Haaarrrumph...well, I was trying to give my blog a more Autumnal color palette...but didn't realize that blogger wouldn't let me change their title bar color.

So after all was said and done...I tried to change it back...but now I can't find my original background color.

Oh well...welcome to my blog...I've re-decorated. Since I can't get my beige back...have some terra cota...I think I may try a hint of aubergine or celery on the next go-round...

Isn't aubergine and romantic color name???

Sorry, apparently I'm channeling Anne Shirley...

See ya around...

Scottish Rite Check Up



Aaaahhhhh...Scottish Rite. Nothing quite like Scottish Rite. Fabulous hospital. Fabulous doctors. Nice, new cafe. Lovely art. And place whose very name renders all my strength and courage into gelatinous goo.

But they make us come. They make us have X-rays.



They make us wait. A.LOT.



We often get very bored...and sing louder than we should...(please note the bend-i-ness of that child's left leg in this next picture.)



Sometimes I even push Bean across the floor on the very-speedy-doctor's-stool...I ALWAYS make sure to look the other way in the doctor comes in...wouldn't want him to think that I, too, was bored. Bored enough to put my very grow-up feet on her hiney and SHOVE her with all my might across the room so she can feel like superman for a moment...(alas, I didn't get a picture.)



Eventually, they come in and tell us what we want to know...

That her left hip has rounded the corner...after 2 years and 7 months there is some growth there...WOOOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOO!!!!! And her mobility is great in that leg. It ALMOST moves normally...and you'd have to MAKE her do something to prove that it doesn't move normally for you to be able to see it.

That her right hip is still in the fracture stage and it's GOING to fracture pretty close to the same amount that the left did...it's heading toward that C status that means 50%...all I can really say about it is "PRAISE GOD for growth plates!!" Apparently it can't fracture much further than the growth plate, so I, for one, am glad she's young enough to still have them. The mobility in that hip isn't GREAT, but is well within normal ranges for the fracture stage...and I will say, so much better than it was in May.

Having spent the last 2 years and 7 months looking at her left hip...this right hip is breaking down FAST! It's hard to tell you exactly HOW close the two are in the digital X-ray that they wave in front of me...but between the growth on the left and the break down on the right, the femoral heads look to be within a couple of millimeters of one another in size. Now, a couple of millimeters is still quite a big difference when you are talking about break down or growth; but where the left femoral head looked like an orange rotting as it broke down (you know slowly diminishing)...this one looks more like someone took an electric sander to it. Sorry for the heebie jeebies that visual might have caused.

AND they made us give back the walker and the zoomy pink wheelchair. Now to be fair, we haven't used the walker in a couple of months. And the wheelchair only really gets used at Walmart and Costco. And, I really do have to say, they did offer to let us have it until they could order us one...so it's probably unfair to say that they MADE us give it back. But we don't have it anymore and we left it there...sooo... They do think she is stable enough to go without it most of the time...(sigh)...and this really is a good thing. A VERY good thing. If only I could get my irrational fears and "what ifs" to pipe down already.

So there it is. The event that I let wreck me on Sunday...the one that made me burst into tears turned out to be not such a big thing. My head knew it was gonna be okay...that we would deal with whatever came...my silly ole tear ducts just didn't get the message. Just keepin it real.

She's good. She's still broken...but her body is doin just exactly what they said it was gonna do...and we don't have to go to that wonderful (terribly stressful) place again for another six months...God willing and the crick don't rise.

See ya around...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Trials of Womanhood...

Well technically, the trials of curly hair. Eh...I should have such trials!!!



See Bear...

Bear's hair has gone from luscious curls to straw in the last few weeks...

Bear's mom, can't stand it...



See Bear...

Bear doesn't understand why mom dragged her to the sink...hosed her head down...schmeared very smelly conditioner in her hair and put a bag on her head...



See Bear...

Bear wishes everyone would stop gigglin at her "hair-do" and that 15 minutes felt more like 2 minutes because she is bored bored bored of this beauty ritual...



See Bear...

Bear is happy that the timer beeped...

See Monkey Face...

Monkey Face is happy to see the camera AND has finally gotten control of her giggles.

Bear's mom hopes that Bear will look less like a scarecrow and more like Goldilocks momentarily...



hmmmmm...Demented Goldilocks...some girls have ALL the luck...

See ya around...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Blogging Trips...


(Saw this coming at me on the 20 Fwy in West Texas (I think)...took a bit of adrenaline and about 2 minutes to decide what I was seeing...it's being towed...but at first I thought it might be coming at me...as I was going about 80, it didn't take too long to realize I wasn't dashing head-long into an on-coming truck...taking the picture at that speed was something of an adventure...but I won't tell you cuz my mom reads here and she REALLY does not want to know.)

This has been the year of trips...

The first trip was not fun, but a trip nonetheless...that would be the hospital trip back in March. Now that one wasn't too hard to blog. We were in the middle of something big emotionally AND I, personally, was bored most of the time...well maybe not bored...but certainly with not much to do. Besides, I had people emailing me questions all the time and it's much easier to answer questions than come up with something out of nothing when you are stressed...


(Mt. Rainier out the window of my plane. This is one of the about 10 pictures that I took the entire trip...)

Then in June my GramMarie died and I traveled alone to Washington state. That was a trip too. And if I'm to be honest, it was fun...and heart wrenching...and nostalgic ...and too full of emotions, both good and bad to write anything WORTHY of the experience even now. In the midst, I didn't blog because I was busy. SO busy. Cataloging her life...scanning photos...singing songs...chattering with cousins and aunts, uncles, 2nd cousins, Greats of all kinds...remembering...


(The girls in their traveling clothes on our trip to Arizona. This was a rest stop in Texas somewhere. I'm pretty sure it was Texas because by New Mexico all the rest stops had "Beware of Rattlesnake" signs.)

Then there was the trip to Grandma's (my mommy) in July. It was a spur of the moment trip, if a 4 day road trip can be called "spur of the moment". And it was a HOOOT!!! We had a blast. Bubba got to come out and be with us and see some sites and just play in the pool. July in August in Arizona means submerged or air conditioning, there are no exceptions...

I've actually TRIED to blog the Arizona trip a couple of times...but there are just too many pictures AND it's been a little over a month ago and there's this other trip we are on RIGHT NOW...


(this is the first night in our hotel...My best friend (known on this blog as SP) made our shirts...which we have worn all over the place...that green garners us quite a bit of attention.)


That's right. Our third annual GIRLY trip. You know the one. Where my friend and her girls meet me and my girls in a central location in these United States and then come back to my house to explore the sites...

I'm living it, RIGHT NOW, TODAY! But as I'm looking over the pictures...there's just so much stuff. There are songs that we are singing...bugs that we are finding...food we are cooking/baking/eating...giggling that we are doing...

And you know how dumb giggling sounds after the fact? Here, I'll give you an example...In the car yesterday, Monkeyface was having an issue with her seat belt...and I'd just issued my standard GITCHER-BELT-ON-RIGHT-NOW-growly-momma-face when she said in her sweet-little-4yo-trying-to-be-macho voice "Buckle-up Buttercup!" The CAR fell apart, laughing.

Okay...so all that to say...BAH, I'm a terrible trip blogger. AND expect when things get a little dry in our school year for me to pull back some of these trip images COMPLETELY in the wrong order.

There, you've been warned. And I've blogged. HA! Two birds with one stone...


(Here are their faces...is Tibbie, Beanie, Bear, Gabby, Monkey Face, Coco and Topo...quite a crew, I'll tell ya...and yes, we are having a blast!!)

See ya around...

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Baptism...

Beanie has been talking about getting baptized for a couple of years now. She was actually scheduled to attend the baptism "party" at our church last year, when our newest little cousin-type-person was born and her momma needed our help and we took off to Colordo.

So when the party came around this year...we were DEFINITELY going...

It was quite a party. For some reason, I didn't GET that there was a pool party to begin it. I should have gotten it. I should have worn my suit or asked Bubba to wear his because the little girls couldn't go in without us and so ended up scampering around in the grass, tackling their Daddy...I think they had fun anyway...actually I think Bubba had MORE fun...



I really took a bunch more pictures...but as ever...other people's children were involved so you don't get to see them...so sorry...

When it came right down to it, Bear decided that she also wanted to be baptized. We'd talked about it a bit before to be sure she knew what it was all about. I'm so thankful they got to share this. I share my baptism date with a best girl friend and it is such a wonderful memory to me.

Here they are waiting their turn by the side of the pool...



Bear ended up going first...here's Miss Bear...



And here is Beanie...



It was a blessed day and a great experience.

Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we ...also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection...Romans 6:3-5

See ya around...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Critiquing my Bedroom...

You know...after 6 years in a place, things start really looking a little run down. They aren't what you fell in love with when you moved in.

Take my bedroom, for instance...


I mean seriously...When one of my children decorated my bedspread with sharpie marker, I never dreamed I'd be standing here over a year later still just using the under blanket...and what's with the pillow sticking out from under the bed...oh and that blue thing...that's a heating pad from several months ago when Beanie was alternating heat and ice...when did I stop putting this stuff away?



Just look at that night stand...SHOES? Shoes go in the closet...and SURELY I'm not reading all those books...I'm a homeschool mom...I have proof on this VERY blog that there are BOOKSHELVES in this house...and I'm not even going to mention the laundry on the dresser...



This would be Bubba's side...I had to be honest because my mother reads here and even without caption, she would know whose side was whose simply because she lived with me for many years. But the nice thing about Bubba's side, is that you can see the furniture...I guess I really do like my furniture. It was Bubba's pick though. I am not terribly good at choosing furniture for the "pretty"...I'm all about comfort and not above sitting on gold and green velor IF it's comfortable...but I digress.



Yeah, I really do like my furniture...the fluffy pretty part needs some work...but I think the room has good bones.

Still I wish I could do something about the pillows...they are SO lumpy...



See ya around...

Monday, August 10, 2009

In Case Daddy Shaves me Bald...

From 08.2009.Pics


The little girls and I stopped in to Sam Moon on our travels today, I'm looking for a bigger bag (didn't find one). In Sam Moon is this WHOLE wall of hair pieces and wigs and stuff that we looked at.

About 10 minutes later, we were out in the car and Bear said, "Momma, if Daddy accidentally shaves me bald, can we go to Sam Moon and get me a wig?" I said, "Bear, seriously, what are the chances that Daddy is gonna shave you bald." She said, "Just in case!!"

I laughed so hard that I'm afraid I could not confirm.

See ya around...

Friday, August 7, 2009

On the Occasion of my 15th Anniversary...

On a wonderful blog that I've found called Malphi, I discovered a poem that SHOULD have been my acceptance of Bubba's proposal a little over 15 years ago...bless his heart.

Yes, I'll Marry You by Pam Ayres



Yes, I'll marry you, my dear,
And here's the reason why;
So I can push you out of bed
When the baby starts to cry,
And if we hear a knocking
And it's creepy and it's late,
I hand you the torch you see,
And you investigate.



Yes I'll marry you, my dear,
You may not apprehend it,
But when the tumble-drier goes
It's you that has to mend it,
You have to face the neighbour
Should our labrador attack him,
And if a drunkard fondles me
It's you that has to whack him.



Yes, I'll marry you,
You're virile and you're lean,
My house is like a pigsty
You can help to keep it clean.
That sexy little dinner
Which you served by candlelight,
As I do chipolatas,
You can cook it every night!



It's you who has to work the drill
and put up curtain track,
And when I've got PMT it's you who gets the flak,
I do see great advantages,
But none of them for you,
And so before you see the light,
I do, I do, I do!



Happy 15 years, My Love...you've filled me with laughter and joy and love and a million other things that make me who I am and I will ever be grateful.

As for the rest of you...See ya around...