Monday, March 23, 2009

First Camping Trip

Last Friday night my husband took our son on his first Boy Scout camp out. Let me start by saying this...I'm just not old enough for this yet! It seems like yesterday I was watching my mom toss pocket knives and flashlights into the grocery cart for my brothers, and Friday afternoon it was me. So strange!

I was a little nervous about how these two "men" will fare! It was supposed to be really quite chilly--down right cold most of the night. Then you have the entire 'cold hard ground' to factor in. My poor husband is quite accustomed to sleeping on a sleep number bed--not cold, lumpy dirt!

But you know what??? They both did great! Aside from having to get up at 7 am in the frigid morning, they had a wonderful time. So great in fact that my husband now has it in his head that he wants to buy a tent and take both boys out this summer and camp. As long as the plan is to leave me home in my comfy sleep number bed...I'm all for them camping!!

Another Failure

My father in law just went in for a stress test last week. What was strange about this stress test is that they actually let him go home. They never do that. He is usually sent immediately to a room in the hospital with an angioplasty set up for that evening or the next day. We thought this was great because it meant that he finally passed a stress test!


He was called this morning and admitted to the hospital for an angioplasty. He's not that old,65, but had a quintuple bypass about 15 years ago. I'm not sure how much time he has left but I do think it's time to get some life insurance quotes. I don't mean a million bucks, but enough to cover the costs of his final requests. It's not a bad idea to get it for my husband either. He's not even 40 yet, but hey, it's all in the genetics right?

Feeling The Love

Our 12th wedding anniversary is coming up soon! I'm really happy to have made it to this milestone. The first 10 years were cake, so I'm hoping the next 10 will be great also! I've been looking into some 'hi-tech' gifts to give the "man" but am having a hard time nailing it down. I would love to get him a computer. I don't care if it's a laptop or a desktop, we desperately need one. Then I found a website on home theater seating and now my mind is working in a whole new direction. I feel bad because whatever we get him, the whole family will use. So it isn't just a fun gift for him. But I guess that's what it means to be a dad!

Growing Up!

I never really planned on being a mom that worked from home. I was college educated, I wanted a career and although I had no intention of continuing to work out of the home once we had kids, I never planned to work and be a mom at the same time. My how times have changed!!

My sister got me started, and I blame her--but there have been so many good things that have come from it. Mostly being able to supplement a one income family. This has helped pay for things my husbands income couldn't have handled without breaking the bank!

What is also strange is the fact that my kids are far closer to college than I ever thought they would be. I know, they grow up fast. I've heard it all their lives, but I just wasn't expecting it quite this fast. MJ loves to tell me every day that in just 3 short years he'll be starting high school! HIGH SCHOOL!! What's next? Looking up vocational and technical colleges by state? I'm so not ready for that one! He actually does have his mind made up for right now...he wants to be a Monster Truck driver. So a Technical college it will most likely be! Of course, this is the same boy who, when I asked him to practice his penmanship a few years back, said, "Mom, I only have to be able to sign a contract and autographs!" Yeah...he was going into the NBA at that point. The sport may has changed, but he's got his heart on the "big show"!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Crazy Kids

Do you have kids that forget everything? I ask everyday before we leave the school--do you have all of your homework? Yes, Mom! Only to come home and find out--we are missing our reading book! Today my son's class has music. They are learning to play the recorder. Last night as I was doing some last minute straightening before bed--I made 2 piles on the couch. 1 for each boy. The pile included, clothes for that day, snack for that day--and homework, books, RECORDER, etc that needed to be put in their backpack before they leave. All of it--right there!! So they are ready to walk out the door, and I ask one last time--do you have everything you need for a Wednesday? Yes, mom--comes the answer. I walk back into the house--across the living room and into the family room. There sitting on the couch is my son's recorder and his snack!

So I ran them to the door-but the car pool lady had already left. So I had to jump in the car and race them to school. I got there shortly after the bell rang--but before the pledge of allegiance. So I waited until the pledge and the announcements were done--and I had him paged to the office. It was only as I was walking out of the school that I realized--I was wearing my slippers!! mmmmm hmmmm, I looked like an out of control mom!!

Field Trips

My oldest's class has a field trip today! They are heading up to the Marriott Lincolnshire Resort to see the play-The Wizard of Oz. It sounds like fun. I've been to the resort-but not to the play house. It is quite far from home--and they are going by school bus. I HATE school buses. Not that I think he's in any danger--I just remember hating the smell of the school bus. Too many kids cooped up in a small space--smelly.

He's looking forward to it. He has this field trip, and then Spring Break--and then a second field trip the week they get back from Spring Break. It seems like a lot--but they are the only two weeks available for the trips. So they will finish up all of their field trips for the year--in a three week period. I can't believe the school year is almost over! Once you hit Valentine's Day--Easter is right around the corner-and once you hit Easter---it's OVER!! Easter is only a couple of weeks away! That is amazing to my brain!

The Question Is Answered

Finally--we know the answer to the age old question... what do men wear under those kilts! Well, for these two anyway, the answer is as everyone has always hinted- NOTHING! How funny-er, embarrassing!

Now I know, it's somehow freeing to 'go commando' but honestly--being a woman--and knowing that certain 'northerly' body parts need constant support to avoid sagging---doesn't a mans 'southerly' body parts need some sort of support? I look at this picture, and I see ... chafing!!

And what is even funnier...the man's kilt is being blown upwards by walking over the vent in the street--hence the man in front of him has his kilt in the air as well-- so does that mean that every person sitting in this section of the parade route got this same view of every man in the bagpipe section? No wonder someone had time to catch a picture--there were at least four bare butts before this poor victim of the air vent!!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dinner Waffles

Do you ever feel like a bad mom? I do--constantly. Tonight for dinner--we had waffles. Yeah, I know, but I was talking to Rob earlier this week and that's what she was making for her family. Now this wasn't your ordinary "Bisquick" waffle dinner--this is from scratch baby! They taste so much better that way! The stiffly beaten egg whites, just make them a little crispier on the outside and yet soft and warm on the inside! We were going to go for taco's tonight--but after talking to her--it was waffles all the way! I didn't have syrup, so we just had the real butter and granulated sugar on top! mmmmmm, dessert for dinner!! The kids loved it!

Newest Project

I've spent most of the day today getting the house emptied out. Well, as much as possible with 6 people still living in it--but we are making some changes to the house that the kids age really can't hurt-but will be so nice to have done. Mostly today, well, this weekend--we are in the bathroom. We are getting a new tub, a new Kohler sink--a better toilet--and beautiful storage cabinets. The vanity--the mirror and all of the lights will be changed out by Monday--but tomorrow--the new tile comes in! I can't wait! It's beautiful--12x12 set at an angle--it will also follow the angle up the tub, and then up the walls around it. It will also be floor to ceiling in the shower as well!

Yes, my house is undergoing some minor cosmetic changes--but this time on Tuesday--I will be living in that room, and refusing to move!!

Boring Sunday

My husband actually had to go into work today! It's such a rarity that he works on the weekends. I don't know why--but when his schedule is a little off like this-it totally messes up my day!! I have a couple of errands to run--and I really should drop in on family for a quick visit. There is a new baby in the family--I refuse to hold, celebrate, talk goofy to this baby--but I really do need to bring some sort of gift!! So I have to go out and find something appropriate, but not to fussy--that's all baby mama needs to jump in and have another one!! She seems to be in the birthing industry for the attention it gets her--hence my lack of attention!!

I need to make a doctors appointment for Daniel. He's always grown out (hefty) before he's grown taller. We've just seemed to have been in the "hefty" stage for a long time. I want to make sure his body is in order. We have so many health problems floating around our genetic pool--that I would rather find something out now and help him out--rather than find it later--after he's been made fun of for being a 'round' kid!! My thoughts--thyroid problems! Yes, he's really young--but it's in every family member--so it may just be!!

I'm Too Old For This

You have heard me complain about my skin unceasingly on this blog. I know, it's old...but honestly, I'm too old to still be having the kind of problems I have. Freckles, zits, blackheads...I'm nearly 38 years old...what is up with that? I recently purchased a couple of skin care products with the hope that it would help clear my skin up. But I had the opposite reaction. My skin broke out, and that break out not only lasted a week and a hurt! And it was due to a "higher" priced moisturizer. I was under the impression that because it cost more, it had to be better, right? Wrong! It was horrible! And just to finish the little tub that I purchased, I use it on the chapped skin on my elbows and ankles. Yes...$30 for ankle cream! I think I'm heading in for a microdermabrasion next! Maybe if they just totally resurface my skin, I might just find some relief. I hope's been 22 years!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

St. Patty's Day!

Next Tuesday is St. Patrick's Day. It's a really big deal here in Chicago. Dyeing the Chicago River Green and all!! I think I will try to plan an outing for the two older boys and I. Before we leave the area-I would really love to see the green river. Wasn't it in Ferris Buellers Day Off? Yes--one of the main problems with the movie. They are at a St. Patrick's Day parade--remember the float--Wayne Newton--Twist and Shout--yeah--you remember!! Anyway--later that same day (or was it earlier???) they go to a Major League Baseball game--problem--Both the White Sox and the Cubs are at Spring Training in Arizona--ain't no MLB game for Ferris to go to around St. Patties Day!!

Anyway--I digress!! It wasn't that long ago we were thinking we would be leaving this area--so it might be nice to witness something that Chicago is famous for before we really do leave! I'll have to take some pictures and get them up here!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Big & Little Girls Night Out

What a fun night! We did in fact go to Benihana's, but what made this girls night out even more fun...we brought our girls!! We both have been blessed with 3 boys and 1 girl. Blake (named after me) turned 4 on December 7, and Kate turned 4 on January 12. We weren't originally going to take them, but Blake had a field trip earlier in the day--and when she got home she got a bath and her hair washed and conditioned--and then Rob felt "adventurous" and blew her hair dry with a little mousse in it. It's getting so long--and with it off of her face her amazing blue eyes just jump out at you. So then she painted her fingernails and toe nails--and just got her all girly. Not for any particular reason--she was just having fun. But when they got here--she asked if it was alright if we made it a real "girls night out" and took the little ladies with us! I thought it was a great idea. Robyn worked with the girls on some poise and table manners--both girls loved having their napkins draped across their laps like grown ups. They loved every minute of it. They chattered away with each other and us--and still gave us "grown up" girls time to chat too!

I hope we do it again really soon!

Friday Night Movie Night

Tonight is Friday Night Movie Night! It's an idea that we adopted from my sister Robyn. My kids don't have school the next day--so we check out the Pay Per View films on Directv, and have pizza. They get to stay up late, watching a movie they want to see--and I get a few minutes of time to myself (in the next room over). So we are looking up movies to watch, the pizza is in the oven--and the kids are in their jammies!

I have to make popcorn the old fashioned way--we are out of microwave popcorn--and I'm really not up to using the machine--Yes, it's less work--but popcorn off of the stove, just tastes better!! So that will be our "treat" for the movie!

Girls Night Out!!

I'm trying to make arrangements tonight for my sister and I to go to dinner together. Our problem--between us we have 8 kids--and husbands that work way to much!! I think she is going to drop her kids off at my house--and I will have two teenaged girls from the neighborhood come in and watch them all! It doesn't save any money-because I'll pay one girl, and Robyn will pay the other-so we didn't save anything on child care. But honestly--would you leave one 16 year old girl in charge of 8 kids?? 2 of those kids are toddler boys--and they would need a sitter just for them!

I'm not sure where we'll eat--neither one of us are really picky. I just have to get my kids home from school and get their homework and chores done--and then the party can begin!

Ok--now I'm thinking...Benihana!!

Looking For Laptops

As anyone who has read this blog for a while knows, this family has been slow in moving into the "computer age". Yeah, I've had this blog for nearly 2 years...but we just recently purchased our own computer. So seeing how it took almost a decade of marriage to get the first it too early to be looking at laptop deals?

I just keep thinking how efficient I could be on a laptop. I could take it to the park with me, while my kids play...I can get some of my "online" work accomplished. Sitting at the McDonald's play place...same thing! I don't make a whole lot of money with my online stores and whatnot to truly validate the expense, but honestly...I'm starting to obsess! We'll see how long I can hold out!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Last week my sister took my kids with her family as they went to get a Bulls players autograph. My oldest was so excited to show me his picture of Ben Gordon. He took it to school the next day to show all of his friends. Let's just say--he was King Cool for the day!

Tonight she took the boys with her again. This time they got Chris Duhon (I think that's right). He looks a lot sweeter in his photo than the last guy--but he will also be making his appearance at the elementary school tomorrow!

I don't know if anyone else is coming. It seems to be a spur of the moment decision. We get a phone call a few minutes before my sister is leaving for the autographs--so I may not find out about the next one for several days! I will have to keep you posted.

My Treadmill

A few weeks back we moved the treadmill into my bedroom. I've been putting it off for quite awhile, but if I was really going to start working out regularly, I needed it up there (by my Tivo).

When we first started looking at exercise equipment I wanted an elliptical, but they cost a bit more at the time, so I got the "space saving" treadmill that folds up. Now that it is in the master bedroom, all I can think is that I was so smart. It's a big room, but not big enough for such a large, bulky piece of I'm glad it shrinks!

So far I've added 5 miles to my results...just from the move. That spells success to me!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


My boys have taken up skateboarding. I'm not quite sure how I feel about this. We sat down with them after getting their boards and all of their gear and had the "YOU MUST ALWAYS WEAR A HELMET" chat. It was readily received (mainly because they wanted us to shut up and let them get to it), but my husband took it one step further. He actually looked up some video on YouTube to show how many kids have been really hurt by not wearing their protective gear. This is the same chat we had when they got their bikes.

When I lived in Japan, we had a rule about wearing our bike helmets. I did and didn't, I don't know why, but one day one of our Elders was hit by a car. A really FAST car. His helmet (luckily he was wearing one) was blown to bits on impact. This young man did survive this terrible incident, but just barely...and with years of painful recovery.

I've also seen motorcycle accident attorneys discussing how valuable helmets have been in accidents, and how catastrophic it is when there isn't a helmet used.

I am a HUGE fan of helmets now. In fact, I wanted a helmet for each of my kids as they learned to walk! How is it all of us made it past this stage in our lives without much more damage? My kids always seemed to get up to speed with their steps, only to smash head first into a wall or down on to the floor! I did tell the boys that, "No, a helmet isn't always going to save your life, but you stand a much better chance of surviving if there is one on your head!" This is a family rule that isn't going anywhere!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Last Big Game!!

Today is my oldest son's last basketball game! I'm glad it is coming to an end-I'm not a big fan of the way the program is run. That said--I should mention that Yes, we will sign up again next year. What I don't like--oh so many things. No one has ever gone over the fundamentals of the game--just threw all of the kids together and have them play a game. Another point--every team has at least one girl on the team. Some teams have two--but our team is the ONLY team with 3--and they aren't the tall girls that other teams got--they are the little tiny short ones. In fact, our entire team is head and shoulders shorter than any other team on the roster!! They rarely get a chance to shoot the ball, and when they do--the other team just tips their bodies in with their arms up, and our kids are totally "caved" in! It will be the same next year--different team shifts--but hopefully my little guy will get a couple of inches between now and then!!

My Kind Of Party!

I am so excited! I was just invited to a "home party" by a friend. It's next Saturday afternoon, and aside from a few hours with good friends, this party is all about getting healthy. I am excited because it's for products set up to help promote energy. I'm hoping they sell something like Solo Slim or one of those "If your wagon is a draggin'" kind of energy drinks. I don't mind healthy weight loss products and high-protein drinks are right up my ally too. I'll have to let you know what I find.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Sick Boy--Maybe

I just got a call from the school! Apparently Daniel is complaining of stomach problems. I'm not sure what the problem is--but he wants to try to make it through lunch to see if it gets any better. Lunch is his favorite part of the day-and if he's not in enough pain to come home immediately but can sit through lunch--I can't imagine why he couldn't make it the rest of the day!

Me thinks it has something to do with Friday being test day! He may be just be a little nervous about his spelling test--although we studied all of the words last night--so he really should feel comfortable with it. He may just be prone to appendicitis like his momma! That is a miserable fate if that's the case. Of course, if he were having that kind of pain--there would be no staying for lunch!!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Spring Break

I think I'm going to plan a trip to Canada for Spring Break. We are pretty close! I think we'll drive to Detroit the first day--spend the night and then cross the bridge into Canada. My kids have never been out of the country--well, I guess the youngest two have--they've been to the border towns of Mexico. But I think Canada sounds like fun!

It will require a little study by me to determine exactly what we are close to, and the fun things to see--if we go! I will let you know tomorrow what I find, and where we are headed! If you've ever been to Canada by way of Detroit--what should I look for??? Let me know!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Boo Boo's!

My little Brett just cut his finger on a razor blade! I am no new comer to kids and blood--but my question is this...WHERE DID HE FIND A RAZOR BLADE??? I cleaned the bathroom this afternoon and searched the house for one. With little ones learning to brush their teeth-I have toothpaste glopped on the sink at all times. It's just easier to razor the globs off--but I could not find one.

Give up on the search, find something else to do--turn my back on him for 2 minutes and he finds the one thing I searched 1/2 of an hour for!! mmmmm hmmmm, that's just scary!!

He's wasn't unhappy or crying at all--but he's not thrilled with the big paper towel taped to his finger with strapping tape! Again, with little ones in the house--band aids are a rare commodity!!

Poor thing!!


Tonight is the first practice for my older boys baseball teams. They are really excited! We did all the shopping and got them all set up with their own bats and batting helmets. I'm a weird mom, and don't like the idea of every boy on the team using the same batting helmet! You know, lice!!

Jacob is on the Yankee's and Daniel is on the White Sox. It costs a fortune to keep them in baseball, but they love it--and it's about all they do extra-curricular-ly-so I don't mind. I wish they loved basketball as much as Robyn's boys--there are at least bleachers to sit on and air conditioning or heating to enjoy! Baseball is on lawn chairs in the sun!!

But their smiles of accomplishment is all we do it for! Go Yanks!! Go Sox!!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Back To School

Today was my boys first day back at school. It was a long weekend-and it was nice to have them in school again. They will come home with a ton of homework--but that doesn't really bother me. I'm a homework fan--I believe it is important for them to have their attention spans stretched now so that Jr. High and High School is an easier transition.

I'm going to take my younger two to my sisters house to have a play date with her kids. Her daughter has school--but that's ok--my kids fit nicely around her two littlests ages--so they both don't mind playing with him.

Then I will get to sit and chat with my sister! That's always the best part of the day!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Change of Plans!!

Well, my sister just called and invited my boys to go with her and her family to see a Bulls player. My boys are excited and want to go--but it will kind of sink our plans for the day. Not really--I guess we'll send the boys with her and take the two younger ones out. We won't be seeing a movie--but if we aren't paying for a movie--we could swing a Chuck E Cheese's night for the younger two. They would love that--and call me crazy-but I LOVE their pizza!!

Plus, they have ride on rides that my little ones enjoy--especially the Barney, Teletubbies and Bob The Builder rides. Now my husband will still want to play the video games--but without the older boys here-even that cost will be cut in half! So I think we have a winner! Now I just have to dig out their Bulls jerseys to get signed-and find them a camera! I think they will have a lot of fun!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Casmir Pulaski Day!

Darn! Earlier I posted that I wanted to take my kids to the movies tomorrow with my sister and her kids. Sounds fun--but I totally forgot--her son and my son both have basketball games. Her son is done at 1:30 but mine isn't done until a quarter to 4! That makes any plans for an afternoon movie impossible!

So now we are thinking we will plan the outing for Monday! We have this weird holiday here in Chicago called Casmir Pulaski Day. He is apparently some Polish Freedom Fighter--I'm all for it--but it would be nice to know a little more about what the holiday is for! Are we supposed to do anything in particular? I think there is a parade in Polish town--but I don't know if it will even be on tv. That might be kind of fun-but it is too snowy here to go sit downtown and watch a parade!!

Oh well, a movie it shall be!

A Day Off!!

My neighbor called earlier today to see if we would like to go roller skating with her and her family. Of course, with the day off of school, I thought it sounded like fun! She was going to run to the Credit Union and then give us a call to let us know when to leave to meet them! Well, she never called. I think that is kind of strange--but oh well! I think if we can get up in the morning tomorrow and get our chores done--I may try to take the kids to the movies. I'll have to check and see what kid movies are out there. They've been really good kids these past couple of days--so that would be a nice treat for them!

I may have to call Robyn and see if they want to come with us.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Mmmmmmm, Donuts!!

Have you ever made homemade donuts? I know, it's probably a really strange question. But today after picking the kids up from school all I could smell was fresh fried donuts. It really made me want to come home and make some!

Now--I'm not nearly as talented at making donuts as Dunkin' Donuts or anything--but they are so easy to make--and eating them warm with powdered sugar is AMAZING!!

My kids are out of school for a 4 day weekend--and I think I see some baking coming on!
I've been wanting to make Snikerdoodles too! I guess I really shouldn't make all of these sweets--or me and my kids will weigh a ton!!

Home Sick!!

My husband came home early from work today. He hasn't been feeling well the last couple of days, but I have to tell you--if he's home from work at all--it's got to be pretty bad. He would go to work on his deathbed if he had to. He has called out sick ONCE in our entire marriage--and he only did it because I threatened that I would call him in sick if he didn't!

He's the boss--so he takes his position very seriously. If he is at work when he doesn't feel his best--it let's his employee's see that they are expected there unless they are on their way to the Emergency Room!! Over the years--he's had tons of employees that call out for any reason and blame it on being sick. We even ran into a couple at the movies or out to dinner on a day when they called out--to sick to move! Oh, the look in their eyes was priceless!!

He's currently tucked in his bed sleeping! I sent the kids next door to play at the neighbors house until dinner. That way they get to have fun, and dad gets to sleep and rest--cause I guarantee--he'll be up and out the door to work tomorrow!!