Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Scarred for Life

Reposted from May 20, 2008
Dusty died.

Well, okay, but who is Dusty?

Our neighbors dog.

Remember I am not an animal person, so Dusty has been the closest thing to a pet that my children have had (besides those fish that live in Ben's room and refuse to die even though we never remember to feed them or clean their tank).

Dusty was a sweet dog. Ron and Sue had Dusty for 14 years and in the four years that we have lived behind them my kids had come to love him. He was patient and gentle and even shared his water bowl with Cooper once.

Over the past year Dusty's health has been rapidly declining and on Sunday he had a stroke. Ron and Sue took him into the Emergency Vet Hospital and determined that it would be best to have Dusty put to sleep. Sunday afternoon we were all outside when Sue pulled me aside to tell me about Dusty. She and Ron were understandably very upset about the loss of their sweet dog and she asked that I please tell my boys.

So I did. And they were sad, but seemed to process it well. We talked about how Dusty was very old and had gotten very sick before he died and that Mr. Ron and Ms. Sue took him to a dog doctor and that is where he died.

Great job, Trish. You covered your kids first pet death experience very well.

Why thank you very much.............

but not really.

Monday morning after getting Ben on the bus, Coop and I are making the five minute drive to the fabulous Miss Jeanie's house and the conversation went like this:

Coop: "Mom, will Dusty be back from the dog doctor today?"

Me: "No, buddy. Remember Dusty died. He is not coming back from the dog doctor."

Coop: "Oh. Mom, what will the dog doctor do with Dusty?"

Me: "the dog doctor will just get rid of him by burning his body."

HOLY COW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just told my four year old what really happens to dead pets..........

HOLY COW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

How stupid am I............did I forget that I was talking to a four year old?

HOLY COW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am supposed to tell him something nice bout how dogs go to heaven and all that sweet stuff.........

HOLY COW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What were you thinking Trish? Now what are you going to do..........

Oh good, we're pulling into Jeanies, maybe YOUR FOUR YEAR OLD WILL FORGET ALL ABOUT WHAT YOU JUST TOLD HIM!

Knock, knock on Miss Jeanies door.

Miss Jeanie opens door.

Coop: "Miss Jeanie, Dusty died and my mom told me that the doctor is going to burn his body"

Miss Jeanie (with stunned and bewildered look on her face): "What?!?"

Me (stammering because I feel like the worst mother in the world): "Dusty was our neighbors dog and yes I just told my four year old what really happens to dead pets and now I am late to work can you take care of that for me i don't care what you tell him cuz anything is better than what I just told him thanks and goodbye."


It's practically the same as therapy. Right?

Monday, December 29, 2008

We're out of here.......

The boys and I are headed out of town for the week. We are hopping a train tomorrow morning to head North. First to my sister Kris' for a day or two, then to my mom and dad's for the rest of the week.
We're going to celebrate Christmas with my family on New Years. It'll be a big shindig seeings as how my immediate family (brother, sisters, spouses, kids, mom & dad) number 34. It's lots of fun and lots of crazy!
I've got some repeat posts lined up to play again. They are my favorites from the past year.
Don't forget to head on over to Sunshine & Lemonade to enter her last Weekend Winner Giveaway!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

In The Spirit of Christmas

Dear Sweet Lady at Fred Meyer,
Thank you. Truly, thank you. You know what Christmas is all about.
You looked into the eyes of a total stranger as we passed each other in the store and saw that I had been crying. I was trying to hide it, but obviously I was not successful. Then instead of just offering a sympathetic look and walking by; you put your hand on my cart and stopped it. Then you put your hand on my arm and asked me if I was okay.
It had been an emotional day (some days are just like that). That store was PACKED, my children were driving me NUTS, my husband and I had been ARGUING all morning long, and honestly it's time for my monthly bout of PMS. I was beginning to feel frantic, like I didn't have everything I needed for Christmas. I was worn thin and it was showing.
While I was trying to convince you that I truly was okay, you reached out and hugged me. In a very friendly, stranger to stranger hug. Not only did you hug me, but you whispered "This isn't how it was meant to be. Take a deep breath and remember that the baby, born in the manger, is what this is all about."
Then you let go and asked if I would be okay. I looked into your caring eyes and muttered yes. Then you and your husband smiled at me and walked away. I scurried off to find a corner to compose myself and dry my eyes.
I looked for you again the whole rest of my shopping trip. I wanted to thank you and possibly hug you back (even though that is WAY out of my comfort zone), but I never did see you again.
So here and now, I want to say thank you. For looking into the eyes of a complete stranger. For reminding me that there was nothing more that I needed. I already have it all because of that Baby, born in the manger.
I hope you know I was blessed by you today.
Merry CHRISTmas,

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
Isaiah 9:6

PS. Yes, this truly happened to me on Tuesday.

The whole neighborhood was turned on

This is one of our favorite Christmas movies:

And look what a house nearby has in their front window:


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Happy First Day of Winter!

I cannot believe all this snow! We are buried here. Benjamin and I went out our deck to measure this afternoon and our 12inch ruler was buried by about 1/2 an inch. I know, to all you bloggy friends that live places like Colorado, Illinois, Virginia and other arctic places, that may not seem like much, but for those of us here in the normally rainy Pacific Northwest, it is a ton of snow!

So what have we been doing?

Well, we've played in the snow.

We left our stuffed friends inside to watch the snow fall.

We sucked on sheets of ice.

We played games together on the computer.

(please ignore that messy desk!)

We decorated our gingerbread house.

Tonight, during our bedtime prayers we prayed that our dear friends Jim and Bob the squirrels are tucked into their nest high in our tree and are staying warm.

And finally, tonight I spent two hours shoveling the walk, digging my car out from under a foot of snow, and putting chains on so that when Dave leaves for work tomorrow in our four wheel drive Xterra, the boys and I are not stuck here at home!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sometimes when you're five......

Sometimes when you are five:
You make your own lunch while your mom is using the facilities.

Sometimes when you are five:
You spill the whole pitcher of juice while trying to pour yourself a cup.

Sometimes when you are five:
You try to clean up the mess by yourself; using every clean dish towel in the drawer.

Sometimes when you are five:
You drink the rest of the juice right out of the pitcher.
Sometimes when you are five:
Your mom says yes to the Froot Loops immediately following lunch because she has a mess to clean up and needs to keep you occupied and in her sight.
Sometimes when you are five:
You ride your scooter around and around in the kitchen because your mom thinks it's cute that you are call it a "mow lawner" and you keep offering to mow my wood floors.

I said SOMETIMES son.
(just not again tomorrow please!)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Smooth (like buttah!)

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Books, Books and more Books **ETA**

More answers to some of the questions that I received a few weeks ago:

Kat at Sunshine and Lemonade asked:
What books are you reading right now? What book have you read that you really wish they would make into a movie (that would be good - and not a horrible Hollywood version of your fav)?

Right now I am reading: Finding the Hero in Your Husband by Dr. Julianna Slattery, Parenting the Heart of Your Child by Diane Moore, and Stumptown Kid by Carol Gorman & Ron J. Findley.

The first two are 'self-help' style books, which I am not usually a fan of. However, I am enjoying both of these and have been able to glean good information that I can apply to my life from both.

Stumptown Kid is a book that Ben read this summer. It is set in the 1950's and is about a white boy who befriends a black man who had played ball in the Negro League. Ben really enjoyed this book when he read it this summer and wanted me to read it then but I never did. When my parents came to visit last weekend my dad was asking if I had anything for him to read. Ben jumped in and said that he had a good book and then disappeared to his room and came back with this one. My dad read it that evening and the next morning and then he and Ben had a discussion about it that I enjoyed listening to. So last week I picked it up one evening and am half way through it now.

Three books at one time and I am not doing very well at finishing any of them! I also have two books on hold at the public library. One is Wicked (which I am 11th in line for right now), the other is My Enemy's Cradle. Interestingly enough, I just found out that the later book was written by Sara Young, who is the same person who wrote the Clementine children's books under the pen name Sara Pennypacker.

As far as what books I would like to see made into a movie. I really cannot think of one. I am very excited to see the Tale of Desperaux. The boys and I love that book and will quite likely splurge to see the movie in the theatre when it opens in two weeks!

Meleea, Jennifer A., and Lula! all agreed that they wanted to hear my thoughts on The Shack:

So this one is hard for me to write. Mostly because I hate controversy and this book is a huge bestseller right now and has been highly acclaimed as Christian fiction.

And I did not like this book at all.

I started reading The Shack this summer, but could not get through it, so I set it aside. I wasn't to excited to pick it back up again because it is not an easy read. The writing is not grabbing and it requires quite a bit of concentration to follow the story. When I read fiction I want it to grab me. Draw me in and take me away. That is why I read fiction, as an escape. This book was definitely not an escape.

I picked this book up again early this fall because I was invited to join in a book club that was reading it. I finished it this time because I wanted to be able to participate in the book club conversation, not because I liked the book.

My determination is that while the Shack is a piece of fictional writing it is not being taken as that. This book has been widely accepted as eye opening into the persons of the Trinity however, it does not line up with the Biblical portrayal of the Trinity. That and the fact that so many people are claiming this as "life changing fiction". I do not believe that fiction can truly be life changing, it is fiction after all and the definition of fiction is "something feigned, invented or imagined; a made up story." So my struggle with this book comes when people say something like "this book changed my life, it opened my eyes to the ...............(insert whatever insight this book brought)", and I have heard this. In the above mentioned book club conversation I heard this: "The Shack has changed my life in the way that it allowed me to see that God could be whomever I wanted Him to be, including a woman if that was the way that God fit into my life". It was then that I realized that this lady was searching and when you are searching you often are looking for what sounds good although it may not necessarily be truth. This insight sounded good to her because it fit into the role that she wants God to play in her life. It reminds me of what I call the Church of Oprah, that god is in us as whatever we want he or she to be, and is only one of the ways into heaven. However, this is completely untrue as told to us in the ultimate authority, The Bible, in John 14:6 "Jesus said to him "I am the way the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through me."

So my take on The Shack boils down to this:

Read it with caution and take it as a piece of fiction (a made up story). If you find it to be "life changing" feel free to e-mail me and we'll discuss that.

And sorry, but I cannot loan you my copy as I returned it to Costco after I read it because I thought it was crap!

** ETA** I would never be one to tell someone not to read something. Probably because I am a bit of a rebel (just a little bit though!) and if someone told me NOT to do or read something, you can be pretty sure that i'd go right on ahead and do it anyway! Read it, form your own opinion, because this is MY opinion and opinions are what make the world go round!

And finally, since we're on the subject of books, my mom tagged me for this meme last week. I have never played along with any of her tags, but I happen to have four books here on my desk right now, so I'll play along.

These are the rules: Open the closest book to you, not your favorite or most intellectual book, but the book closest to you at the moment, to page 56. Write the 5th sentence, as well as two to five sentences following that.

The closest book of the five is Stumptown Kid. Page 56, fifth sentence and the following sentences read:

" I said I didn't say nothin'," I repeated.
"I think you called me a name, Stumptown," Lobo said.
He came out and stood there on the line between home and first base, his hands on his hips.
"He called you a creep, Lobo," said one of Lobo's friends. He sneered, probably thinking about what Lobo was going to do to me now. Will was watching from behind. He looked scared.

Now I want to know what you are reading or have read lately............

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Best Nativity Ever

It was built as an entry into a Lego contest that required "building your favorite winter scene completely from Legos" and writing a 50 word or less essay describing your scene and why you built it.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Something to think about

Here is a little something to chew on this Christmas season.

My husband and I have always done a very simple Christmas for our kids, and I cannot say that I am ready to give the gifts up as my sister and her family have done, but her post is very good and really something to think about this Christmas.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


My sweet baby Cooper turns five today. I can hardly believe it. Just a few days ago I pulled him into my lap and asked him to stop growing older. To not turn five. To just be four forever. He would have nothing to do with that, probably because turning five means he gets to take four friends to play at Jungle Playland and to have lunch at his favorite little golden arched bistro.

Dear Cooper,
I can truly hardly believe that this day has come. Five is so big. What a sweet blessing you are to our family. You are such a cuddle bug. Hugs, kisses and snuggling are your thing, and as long as there is peace, love and snuggles, you feel safe. There is nothing that makes this mom so happy as when you want to snuggle with me on the couch and have 'face'.

This year has been a year of big boy adventures for you. You learned to ride a two wheeler like a pro,you climbed a humongous tree with your BFF Kaleb without us moms knowing (until Kaleb fell out of the tree), you went solo into the big pool while mom sat on the edge, you came down the water slide without anyone there to catch you, you rode your bike to the park down the road with your big brother, you started preschool and played on a soccer team.

I cherish the 30 minutes that we have in the car three days a week after dropping Dutter off at school but before your school starts. I love that you want me to drive straight to your school and every time you tell me to slow down so that I don't miss the driveway. You then climb into the front seat with me and we sing at the top of our lungs to the High School Musical Soundtrack. You sing all the boy parts and tell me I can only sing the girl parts. It makes me laugh every time! Some mornings we just sit there in the preschool parking lot and chat. You have become quite the conversationalist and I love it when you throw a big boy word or two into the conversation.

The very best part of this year Cooper, was the day that I listened from the drivers seat as your brother prayed with you to ask Jesus into your heart! Hearing that made it nearly impossible to drive because I could not see through the tears and just tonight you made me cry again when your bed time prayer included the words "I hope I be a bwessing to my fwiends tomowwow".

It makes mommy sad to see that you are hardly my baby anymore, but it also makes me so happy to see you growing up to be such a sweet little boy.

Cooper, you are a blessing everyday.

Love you more than you know,

Monday, November 24, 2008

Answers to some of the deep and meaningful questions ya'all asked me

Alright, it's the moment you've all been waiting for. Right? You've all been waiting on pins and needles for this moment in time when I answer all your burning questions about my life.

Here we go:
Elena asks: How did you meet LeeAnn?

Well, Elena, LeeAnn and I met at church. Or more likely in a small group Bible Study. We had a mutual friend that invited me to join their group that LeeAnn was already a part of. That group disbanded, but we still go to the same church and see each other there. We don't get to hang out together, mostly because we live across town from each other and our paths don't cross much, but she is one of those people that I am always happy to see and I feel completely at ease talking to when we do get a chance to talk. But look, I do have this picture of LeeAnn, our friend Lisa and I from five years ago. (Sorry LeeAnn, I'm not sure why my scanner scanned you in so gray!) So Elena, how do YOU know LeeAnn?

Gina says: Tell me about how we met.....

Well, Gina, you always have been a smart aleck, but I'll explain it for the rest. It goes like this. Our parents brought you home from the hospital around my 28th month of life. I'm pretty sure I asked them to take you back, but they insisted on keeping you and probably tried to convince me that you were 'my' baby. I wasn't buyin it. So in short, I've known you all your life. I knew you when you chewed your toenails. I knew you when you still sucked your thumb at 13. I knew you when you drank beer with your friends behind the garage at 14. I knew you when you drove white Geo Metro with a license plate frame that said "a princess doesn't do dishes". Baby, I have known you all your live long years and I can honestly say that I am glad they didn't give you back.

Hot Tub Lizzy asks:

What television show from your childhood do you have the fondest memories about?

Without a doubt it would be The Cosby Show. We didn't have tv for a lot of my childhood, but when we finally did get one I remember my family gathering every Thursday night to watch Heathcliff and Claire Huxtable raise their family. I love to watch the reruns with my kids now!

What's your favorite breakfast food?

Cereal. I would eat cereal for breakfast, lunch and dinner if I didn't have mine or my families nutritional needs to worry about. And not healthy cereal either. Sugar cereal. Frosted Flakes, Fruit Loops, Sugar Puffs, just not chocolate cereal; it's gross.

What would your dream job be? What's a job you would NEVER want to do?

Right now I think my dream job would be as an Labor & Delivery nurse. There is TWO fundamental problems with that dream though. First of all I could NEVER pass an Anatomy & Physiology class in college, so I quit taking them and secondly, I don't do blood or body fluids. Seriously, I have been known to pass out at the sight of blood and my gag reflexes are awful. So what good would I be. However, I LOVE the miracle of life.

I guess my job that I would NEVER want to do would be a Phlebotomist. You know, a person who draws another persons blood for lab work. Yah, probably not my gig. I also would NEVER want to do anything related to sewage or septic. Blech.

Someone is giving you a $100 gift certificate for Christmas. What store would you want it to be from?

Ooooh, yay! $100 just for me? Well, the completely impractical part of me wants it from Title Nine. Specifically to help pay for this:However, the practical side of me would say Target. I do love my Red BullsEye.

Alright, that's all I'm giving you for now. Thank you all who have played along so nicely. This is fun! I promise to get to the rest of your questions very soon.

Still want to play along? Well, feel free to leave your burning questions in the comments.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Another Weekend Winner Giveaway

Don't forget Kat at Sunshine & Lemonade is doing her Weekend Giveaways! I REALLY want to win this one because I WANT a favicon.
Not a bad favicon.
Just a favicon that I want badly.

So click on over, enter yourself and if you win feel free to donate the prize to me.

And don't forget that I'm taking questions here.
I'm gonna start answering them on Monday.
I know ya'all can hardly wait, huh.
And yes, I will post my "review" of The Shack. That won't happen until later in the week though because it's going to be all scholarly, so it will take me a while to come up with some big words to include in the post. Give me time folks.
Until then, please go add your questions for me here. Remember I'll answer anything.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Whad'ya wanna know?

I've got bloggers block again. I just don't know what you want to read about so allow me to throw a few things out there:

Do you want to know about how I went to my friend Meredith's house on Wednesday morning and just hung out? Really, I did nothing but sit on her comfy leather couch and talk with her. For three hours. She worked on a counted cross-stitch, but I just sat like a bump on a log. She is seriously one of the easiest people to talk to and I love that about her. It was a great morning!

Or maybe you want to know about how my friend Vanessa and I are going to see Twilight at 10:45am on Friday morning. Seriously. We are going to the movies at 10:45 AM on a Friday morning. Who does that? Well apparently I do. We both really want to see the movie, but neither of us are such die hards that we want to venture out at midnight the night before and we don't want to mess with the pubescent crowd on Friday night, so we are going to the 10:45 AM showing. It'll be fun to see what other mothers sneak off to the movies while their kids are in school!

I know, you really want to know about how frustrated I am with my wardrobe, right? I'm basically a jeans and t-shirt kind of girl. Most days that is what you will find me in. Jeans, long sleeve t-shirt, and my black Dansko clogs. It's my uniform. I love my uniform, especially when I add my black Columbia Sportswear jacket or my red Eddie Bauer puffy vest. It's what I feel most comfortable in. It's me. However, I wish I was a little more daring. I want to walk into a store and pick up something not in my uniform and wear it. Maybe I should start with these:

or these:

I'm sure you are all dying to know about how I called my mom last night and dumped a huge guilt trip on her about how she never comes to visit me, right? Well I did. It wasn't pretty and it wasn't fair of me either. I called her back tonight and apologized. The great thing about my mom is that she forgives me. She forgave me before I even called to apologize. I love that about her.

Speaking of my mom, I know that you all want to read about my moms trip to Africa. Well, she hasn't shared much of the details yet. I think she is still processing a lot of it, but I also know that she is easing us into the tough stuff. At any rate she has two posts about her trip so far, go read them here and here.

Oh, oh, I know. How about I teach you all the most popular game at our house these days. I know you are all dying to know how to play

"Happy it's not your birthday"

So it goes like this. The game can ONLY be played immediately following dinner and ONLY on nights when daddy is home (yep, I made up those rules). So we go around the table and one person at a time closes their eyes while the other three very quickly run through the house and grab random objects to give to the other person for their NOT birthday. Once everyone has gathered back at the table the gift receiver opens their eyes while we sing "happy it's not your birthday to you" and is then presented with their gifts and a tall tale of why that gift is suitable for their NOT birthday. The recipient then gushes over the thoughtfulness of the gifts and we laugh at the silliness of it all. We then proceed to let everyone in the family take a turn at being the recipient of the completely random household objects. It is hilarious! Cooper made up this game a few months ago and wants to play it every night, that is why I added my two rules to the game.

Well, that's all I got. For now. I better save some of my randomocity for another time, especially since I just don't feel my blogging mo-jo coming back.

Why don't you all help a girl out here and ask me some questions.

What do ya want to know?

Any question.

C'mon, you know there's something you really want to know about me.
About my sister?
My feelings on Obama?
Or the Shack?
About the ozone layer?

Just ask, I'll answer.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Talk about Publicity Stunts

I cannot believe I am going here because I usually avoid controversy.

I thought we were done with this, but apparantly not because it is in the news again. So here I go:

I'm sure you all heard the news last spring that Oprah (blech) heralded as miraculous? You know about the "pregnant man"?

Well apparantly "he" is pregnant again.

This is NOT miraculous because "he" is not a man. He is really a she. She was born female and grew up female and as an adult decided that she wanted to pursue living as a man instead.

She is a female, and the only miracle in all of this is that by God's design women were made to have babies. That is miraculous.

The fact that a woman, who has decided to live her life as a man, is pregnant is not newsworthy. I am so tired of Oprah (blech again) and Barbara Walters (who has lost any credibility as a news anchor as far as I'm concerned) touting this as news.

The media needs to quit playing into these peoples incessant need for the limelight and send them back to their quiet little Bend subdivision.

Please let this go away!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I didn't mean for this to happen..........

I'm sorry, truly sorry. I cannot believe that this has happened to me. Honestly, I swore it never would. I have even warned others about safeguarding themselves from this exact thing. And now it has happened to me. I'd like to blame it on her because if she hadn't contacted me about "the friendship" I would have been able to just let it remain what it was; a monogamous relationship. Instead, now I foray back and forth. I have made contact with so many others from the past that it is just inevitable that I would fall in love. Oh, I do know that nothing can replace my first love, but I would like to work out an agreement in order to keep them both. Is that to much to ask? I mean at least I'm being honest and not stringing either of them along.

So tell me, can a girl love her blog and Facebook at the same time?


I didn't win the Wicked Soundtrack and book from Kat.

I'm sad.

The good news is that she is doing another Weekend Giveaway.

And this one involves the tata's.............

(i've always wanted to type that on my blog!!)





Friday, November 7, 2008

It's another giveaway!!

My friend Michelle is doing another giveaway of her fun products.
Go check out her blog and get in on the fun!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Isaiah 46:9-10

Remember the former things long past,
for I am God, and there is no other;
I am God and there is no one like Me,
Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, 'My purpose will be established, and I will
accomplish all My good pleasure.'

Monday, November 3, 2008

Ten Weeks of Winners

It's another giveaway..............

From my friend Kat at Sunshine & Lemonade. She is doing TEN weekends of giveaways, and if the first one is an example of the rest of the prizes then you all best just stay away, because I want to win them all!!

If you must go visit her, be sure to TURN UP the volume because she plays great theme songs to each of her posts!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The future of the free world is at hand.......

You all thought I was going there, except I'm not.
I will say this though:
No matter what happens on Tuesday, God is in control.
Now, back to our regularly scheduled blog fodder:
Ever since the day this kid started talking

my husband and I been in complete agreement about his future.

This child is destined to be a Lawyer, a Politician or a Con Artist
(and yes, we do realize they are all very closely related if not one in the same).

Take this conversation tonight at the dinner table tonight:

Ben: "I'm thinking about getting baptized."

Me: "Oh really, why?"

Ben "Well, it's just one more step in me getting to heaven."

Me: "Actually, Ben, you do not have to be baptized to get into heaven, remember all you need to do to get into heaven is to believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins and ask him to be your Savior."

Ben: "Well, what is baptism for then?"

Me: "It is a public decleration of your faith in Jesus Christ."

Ben: "or it could just be my Publicity Stunt"

Friday, October 31, 2008

Minus a few brain cells today

As we speak my son is sitting in a third grade classroom slowly losing his brain cells. They are being killed off one at a time all in the name of Halloween. You see at his school they are allowed to wear costumes as long as they are dressed as a book character. So Ben chose to dress as Calvin (as in Calvin & Hobbes)

And since I am always the super prepared mother I sat down last night at 11pm with red t-shirt and a black sharpie to create a Calvin shirt. 45 minutes later I was done, but high as a kite from the Sharpie pen fumes. 7 hours later my child awakens me from my coma by standing next to me in his awesome shirt, but all I can smell is Sharpie. It is then off to the bathroom to create the wonder that is Calvin's hair. Yeah, it's cool, but cool takes ALOT of goop. We put in mousse, we put in Got2Be Glued gel, and we put in more Aqua-Net hairspray than I used my entire eighth grade year. Once his hair is in it's chemically induced state of coolness, he then heads out to the living room to pick up his accessory piece. An adorable stuffed tiger that we picked up at the Goodwill yesterday. Did I say PICKED UP AT THE GOODWILL? Then by all means I should probably sanitize that thing before he hauls it around all day. And by sanitize I certainly do not mean throw it in the wash machine with some eco-friendly laundry soap and extra hot water. There is no time for that. By sanitize I mean grab the giant aerosol can of Lysol and spray the heck out of that tiger.

So that is how I sent my third grader off to school today. Looking like Calvin, carrying Hobbes, but smelling like a chemical reactor. Hopefully no one lights a match!

Pictures to follow later tonight.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Dear Zac Efron,

Wow, did you have a great weekend or what? I heard your newest installment raked in over 40 million dollars this past weekend and that was just it's opening weekend. Not bad for a movie marketed to the "tween" set. You know the 8-11 year olds that really do not have any money to their name, but instead spend daddy and mommy's money to see you and your beautiful girlfriend sing and dance your way through your senior year.

I admit that I have not seen your latest movie yet. I'm still undecided about whether or not I will take my tween to see it. Now don't get me wrong. I did see the first two. And honestly I really liked them. Well, the first one more than the second, but that is typically the way it goes. My kids loved them too. Especially the songs. There is nothing like driving your four year old to preschool with the soundtrack to HSM playing very loud and listening to him sing all the words to every song. That is marketing genius!
I do have one bone to pick with you though, little mister. And yes, I know you are actually in your twenties, an adult and everything. And while you may or may not choose to be a role model in real life, you chose to play one in the movies thus making you a person that lots.......errr, make that tons...........oh no, maybe millions of 8-11 year old children adore, probably most of whom are girls (along with lots of thirty-something women, but we won't go there). Since you have so many adoring young fans, would you do them all, and me, a favor and spend a tad bit of your millions, it doesn't have to be much, on a belt. Yes, I said buy a belt. You know one of those things that holds your pants up while you are walking arm in arm along the beach with your sweet girlfriend. That way the millions of YOUNG girls who adore you, never have to risk seeing a scene like this. What if your under garment accidentally slipped down that last 1/8 of a centimeter.

(photo courtesy of

Enough said.

Now please go on your merry way making sweet teeny bopper musicals.

Much love,

The mother of a tween whom I never hope to see with his pants slung that low

Monday, October 27, 2008

I worked the system last night

My beloved local Fred Meyer recently sent out some amazing coupons in celebration of their grand re-opening after completing a remodel.

So tonight, armed with my grocery list and coupons I embarked on a savings adventure.

After TWO hours (I was by myself, so I shopped leisurely) I had a cart full of groceries, and not just the basket portion, the bottom of the cart was packed tight too!

My total before coupons was $208.43.

After coupons?


Yeah Baby!

Thursday, October 23, 2008


(because I make my own rules!!)

This one shall be titled "Goalie Practice in the Pacific Northwest"

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


A friend recently gave me a couple of zuchinni and for some reason Cooper took an instant liking to this one.

(Yikes that kid needs a haircut!)

Today we turned his big zucchini friend into something delicious:
(Yikes that is a big knife right there next to that 4 year old!)

Cooper called it Bookini Bread.

So BOO-kini bread it is. All ready to be delivered to his teachers tomorrow and an extra set for Ben's teacher.

Monday, October 20, 2008

A message from my mom

Thank you to all of you who are praying for my mom as she serves in Africa. Here is an e-mail update she sent out today:

We arrived in Kigoma at about noon today. Am safe with the Stillman's at this time. Are trying to make plans for when we go where. Culture is so different, am having a difficult time seeing the poverty I am seeing. It is a way of life here. We will be going to one of the refugee camps this week sometime. I can see the Congo from the Stillman's front window. They are about 4/5 of the way up the lake from the southern tip. The lake is 400 miles long and 30 to 50 miles wide. They tell me it is the 2nd deepest lake in the world. Kigoma is also right on the border of Tanzania and Burundi. Geography lesson for today.
Flying from Dar es Salaam took about three hours. It took 4.5 hours to fly from Seattle to New York. In all fairness, I was on a prop to Kigoma and a Jet to from Seattle. A difference of about 200 miles per hour.
Chuck, I still have had all of the Toilet Paper I need. Will see how things are once we get to the camps. I think we will go to one of them this week. Are getting only one day in each, had hoped for more but the officials say that since they are being sent back to Congo they do not need visitors any more. Whew, the corruption is amazing.
I am taking as many pictures as I can, but I have to be careful as so many places do not want you to photograph them and some of the people are insulted if you photo them also. I always ask before I do.
Someone, please tell Susan that I would include her in my mailings except the address I have for her is not current. If she sends me an e-mail I will be able to include her.
Gina, maybe you can tell dad that I have mailed again.
Stan, send me an e-mail so I know you are receiving from me.
Love to everyone
Ev, Evy, Mom, Gramma, etc

It is very hard for me to imagine my sixty something year old mother, who has never travelled outside the US (except to Canada and Mexico once) taking it all in in Africa. It will beinteresting to see what God shows her. She is already a wonderful person and I just know that God will use her in an amazing way. She will come back a changed person.

Please continue to pray for her safety and ministry.

Circa 1990

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Please Pray

My mom left early his morning for 3 weeks in Africa. She is going to the Congo to serve the Tanzanian refugees there.

Please pray for their safety and effective ministry!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Are you Smarter than a 3rd grader?

My third grader announced tonight that he had homework for me.

"Oh really?" I said. Fully expecting him to pull out yet another questionnaire or form for me to fill out.

He then proceeded to pull this out of his backpack:

That is Laszlo Polgar's book titled Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games.

It is 1104 pages long.

And all the pages that look like this:

Apparently the kid did not get the memo that I don't do books that long. (Although I have read a certain Vampire series whose 2560 pages were worth every minute of my time.)
I asked him why I needed to read the book, which ironically has very few words and far to many pictures of chess boards.

He told me that he wants to be a better chess player because chess players are better at math.

Ummm okay.

Then he said that in order to be a better chess player he needs to practice more at home. And in order to practice more at home someone there needs to know how to play chess.
So he asked Mr. Wagner (the media specialist and chess coach at his school) for a book that I could read to learn how to play chess.
Apparently Mr. Wagner recommends this one.

Can't we just stick to being mediocre in math?

Monday, October 13, 2008


I've been absent.

Well, actually I've been here.

I just haven't felt like posting stuff whilst I deal with JUNK in my life.

Yes folks, it's true. I got junk.

In my trunk?

Only sometimes it slips out.

And then it makes a mess and exposes me for the fraud that I am.

I'm not really a fraud.

I am quite likely one of the most genuine persons I know.

I am who I am.

I am who God made me.

Only sometimes I forget.

I have a very wise friend who recenly shared with me a great analogy:

You see we all have this bottle inside of us where we keep our bad stuff. Some peoples bottles are bigger than others. Anyway, we take all our junk and stuff it in that bottle and then we stick the cork in it. Then we have more bad junk and so we stuff the bottle again and again. Then pretty soon the bottle is full and we just can't get the cork in quick enough after we stuff junk in there and some of the junk comes spilling out.

A couple of weeks ago my bottle was so full that the cork didn't even fit anymore.

Then it tipped over.

It made a mess.

That's okay because my God is an amazing God and he deals with my messes much better than I do.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance so also our comfort is abundant through Christ

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I am one of THOSE parents


I am a sideline screamer.

I stand at the sidelines of Ben's soccer games and yell.

NEVER at the referee (I mutter my disdain for the ref quietly under my breath).

I just the game, at the players, at my son, at whatever is going on out on the field.

Never critically.

I just offer my very loud (and unsolicited) advice on how to play the game.

From the sidelines.

But here's the kicker (get it? soccer......kicker)

I am only like that with soccer.

Ben also plays basketball and baseball and I am perfectly capable of quietly watching those games from the sidelines and cheering when appropriate.

Not with soccer. I just get so into the game.

I LOVE the game.

I just recently gave up playing on a team myself.

And this year his team has really advanced the level of play. They are playing in the top division in their age bracket and are doing so well!

Besides I LOVE the game.

So that brings me to the carrots and tootsie pops.

I take little bags of carrots and tootsie pops to the games to help keep my mouth busy so that I don't embarrass or make a spectacle of myself.

Yes, I spend the whole game munching and crunching and licking and sucking in order to keep myself kind of quiet. And I pace. Alot.

That makes Lisa the winner. Except she already knew the answer to the question because she paces and munches on my carrots right along side me while we watch our boys play together.

I just never thought she would EVER leave me a comment on my blog. EVER. (Actually I didn't even know she reads my blog without my prompting.)

So Lisa, want to know your prize?

It's a season supply of baby carrots and tootsie pops!

Monday, September 29, 2008

I have a little riddle for you!

What does four single serve bags of baby carrots and two tootsie roll suckers have to do with boys u-9 soccer?

The first one to come up with the correct answer may just get a sweet little prize. Maybe.

Or maybe not.

At any rate, I'll be back to fill you in on the answer Tuesday night.

And Nicci, you can't play along since you know the answer.

The rest of you, leave me your guess and then click over to Nicci's blog and check out her great photography skills!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A little weekend narcicism

35 Things about ME

I pulled this from Meredith from life at 7000 feet.

1. Do you like blue cheese salad dressing? with hot wings only

2. Do you own a gun? Yep, we have 3. We keep them in the garage and they squirt water really far!

3. What's your favorite drink at Starbucks? Tall, non-fat pumpkin spice chai (no coffee)

4. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? milk

5. Do you do pushups? whats that?

6. What's your favorite piece of jewelry? My wedding ring.

7. Favorite hobby? blogging. oh and I love to play soccer!

8. Do you have A.D.D? Probably, but I've never been diagnosed

9. What's one trait that you hate about yourself? I'm insecure, even though I can put up a good front.

10. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment: I should go eat my sandwich, What are my kids watching and why do people feel it necessary to take advantage of others giving nature.

11. Name 4 drinks you regularly drink. Water, Dr. Pepper, OJ and one glass of milk a day.

12. Current worry right now? My lack of income.

13. Current hate right now? the coming rainy months

14. Favorite place to be? Home with my family

15. Do you like to travel? Yes

16. What color shirt are you wearing? White

17. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? No, flannel is my favorite, even in the summer

18. Can you whistle? Kind of

19. Favorite color? Red

20. If you could would you be a pirate? Yes!! For a day that would be fun. I would be a nice pirate though!

21. What song do you sing in the shower? I don't sing in the shower, I usually spend that time praying.

22. Favorite girl's name? Avery, Brooke, Mallory

23. Favorite boy's name? Well, I'm kind of partial to Benjamin and Cooper, but I also like the names Sawyer and Tucker.

24. What's in your pocket right now? $7.04

25. Favorite bedsheets as a child? Seriously? I can't remember.

26. Worst injury? Whiplash from falling in a soccer game and hitting my head, hard.

27. Do you love where you live? Yes, but I am also willing to move, if God opens the doors!

28. How many TVs do you have in your house? One

29. Who is your loudest friend? Ummm, let's My friends are the quiet types.

30. How many pets do you have? None, Ben has a fish, but unless the tank gets cleaned sometime in the very near future, she is probably going to die soon. And I'm NOT cleaning the tank.

31. Does someone have a crush on you? Hopefully my husband does.

32. What is your Favorite Book? Besides the Bible? Well, I d0 love the Twilight series, but my favorite of all time has got to be Bridge to Terabithia.

33. What's your favorite candy? Hot tamales.

34. Favorite Sports Team? Salmon Creek soccer boys U-6 Avalanche and boys U-9 Fighting Hornets!! They are so much fun to watch.

35. What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? Yay, It's Saturday. I can go back to sleep!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

In case you were watching......

Greys Anatomy.

I've lived in Washington State for 26 years and the Seattle area for half of that time and I've never seen icicles form like that on a building...........

I lived in Anchorage for the first 9 years of my life and I used to see them form like that all winter long there.

Not in Seattle though.

Just sayin.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Entertainment News that SHOULD be on the front page

I don't really care who came out of the closet yesterday.

This on the other hand is worthy of the cover of every magazine at the registers.

But you'll never see it there.

And since it was on the last hour of the Today show it was probably missed by many.

However, I believe this is newsworthy.

Since I know that some of you will not (or cannot) watch the video I'll tell you about it.

It's my heartthrob Kirk Cameron.

Declaring that he will never kiss anyone other than his wife.

Not even in the name of acting.

I guess I'm okay with that.

He's also promoting his new movie Fireproof.

Which I believe every couple in America should buy tickets to and go see.

Our nation would be changed.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I **heart** Mama Kat

It's true.

She's givin away a Hoover (the vacuum, not the dam.)

Guess what I need?

Yep, a vacuum. Mine broke last week.

I went a week without vacuuming, then my friend Lisa asked me to watch her 14 month old. I said "sure, but bring your vacuum so she is safe to be on my floor."

Since she has central vac in her house she so kindly left her vacuum in my care until I could get mine fixed.

Dave took our vacuum to the repair today. The guy said "it's not worth fixin. It'll cost more to repair it than to buy a new one." hmmpppfff.

So then tonight I'm out blog lurking and I stumble across Mama Kat's Great Hoover Giveaway.

Guess what?

I need that vacuum.

Oh and by the way Mama Kat, your blog totally rocks.
You are pretty.
Your kids are super adorable.

Yep, I'm totally sucking up.

Kind of like that Hoover.

I might need therapy for my failings

By now you've all met her, right?

She's my mother.

She sews. Great things.

She knits. Beautifully.

Oh, and she cooks. Impressively.

I'm sure she learned all that out of necessity.
She was one of 12 children and grew up very poor.
So if she wanted it, she learned to make it.

Apparently I didn't have the need to learn all those things.

Oh, I tried to learn to sew.
I made a windsock in 6th grade Home Ec.
It was hideous.
She proudly displayed it out for all to see.

I wanted to learn to knit a few years back.
She tried to teach me.
I am right handed, she is left.
Yeah, that didn't work.

But alas.
I AM a good cook.
I can follow a recipe very well.
I have rarely ruined anything.
I often take liberties and experiment with recipes to make them my own.

However, there is one thing that after all these years has elluded me.

It's the pie crust.

I've tried.
Many times.
I can make the dough.
I follow the recipe.
I just cannot get that dough rolled out.
It sticks.
It cracks.
It breaks.
It gets tough.
It doesn't ever fit my pan.

I have never successfully fitted a pie pan with my own homemade pie crust.
I've tried and failed.
Then I go to the store and buy my old favorite.
They're pretty.
And yummy.
And expensive.

So, mother, please come.
Teach me to make pie crust.

You gas money could save me from a lifelong, expensive relationship with the dough boy.

Monday, September 22, 2008

An Update on 'J'

Remember this post? I told you about a little boys named 'J' whose mother had died recently.

I have more info to share with you all:

J's mom died very suddenly. While she was not a real healthy person, she was not terminally ill. One afternoon in late August she told her older son that she was going to take a nap and went and laid down. J was not home at the time. Around dinner time the older son went in to wake her up and she did not respond. He called his grandmother, who instructed him to call 911. The paramedics pronounced her dead at the scene. She had a blood clot in her leg that travelled to her heart.

J and his older brother have been mostly living at their grandparents house just around the corner from us, although I know that there is an aunt who is in the picture also. J has spent quite a few afternoons playing at our house in the past couple of weeks. He is a great little boy. Very respectful and nice. The handful of times he has eaten dinner with us he has been super polite and NEVER complains about having to eat salad or veggies!

One evening I walked him home and spent some time talking to his grandmother, who is a very sweet lady. She and her husband were just getting ready to retire and do some traveling before their daughter died suddenly, so she is a bit overwhelmed by the reality of having to raise children again. She did tell me that J's dad is in Minnesota but is no longer in jail there, so they fear that he may try to get custody of him. One would hope and pray that doesn't happen, knowing what little I know about his history.

Please continue to pray for this little boy. He is dealing with a lot of pain and although he tries to mask it, I can see that it is there. I want him to feel safe and loved at our house and know that it is a place that he can come to anytime. J doesn't have much in the way of clothes or other worldly possessions and we are in one of the more affluent school's in our district. I have seen first hand some of the kids flaunting what they have or snubbing others for what they don't have, and while I know that not all kids are that way, it can be rough for those who do not have.

Please also pray for Ben. He knows a lot of the details of J's rough life and has really stepped up to the plate to be a good friend to him. Please pray that this continues.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Coming up for air

I'm okay. Tired, but okay.
I don't know what happened to the week, all I know is that it is over.
It's been a rough one.
I had a lot going on.
I was being pulled in a few different directions and I dropped a few balls.
Uggghhh. I hate it when that happens.
I had to make an admission to myself yesterday.
I can no longer manage my schedule and my families schedule without writing it all down.
In the past I have always kept our schedule in a very trusty place.

My head.

This week I missed an appointment because I forgot about it.
And I forgot to mail a very important bill payment.
That is so not like me. Usually.
By Thursday afternoon I was feeling overwhelmed and exhausted and somewhat in a panic because I thought for sure I was going to forget something else I needed to do.

Someone recommended I take a Valium.
Another someone recommended I buy a planner.
I skipped the Valium and bought this:

Ain't that a cutie?

I don't usually go for "cute" but it was cheaper than "not cute" and has some great features.

Now I just need to remember to use it.

Oh yeah, my sister Kris and I had a great time last weekend. We successfully did nothing productive and we had fun along the way. We ended up not picking each others toes. She did pick her own though. And she cut my hair (and Dave's and Coop's). I'm sure she had fun waxing my eyebrows, but I think she had more fun sending my family to church while we played hookie to go to Ikea and the Container Store. Nah, I'm sure waxing my eyebrows was the highlight of her weekend. Her train was late getting into Vancouver on Sunday, which means I got to keep her for a bonus 3 hours. Thanks Kris!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Auto reply: Out of Office

Hey friends, thanks for stopping by. I'm not home at the moment, but if you leave a comment at the bottom, I'll be sure to get back to you as soon as I return.

Where am I?

Why, thanks for asking.

My good bloggy friend Debbie invited me to guest blog over at

So head on over and check out how I've decided to try out a new method of parenting and am now letting my children run amuck.

Now I'm taking the weekend off.

You see my sister Kris came to visit me, so we are going to spend the weekend doing whatever it is that we do when we're together.

Okay, not really.

Normally when she comes to visit I put her to work painting or something like that, but this time she told me that she was not bringing any work clothes because she was riding the train and she wanted to pack light.


So, instead of doing anything productive we are going to sit around and twiddle our thumbs and pick each other's toes.

I'll take pictures.

See you all soon and thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Should I have cried?

Cooper started preschool yesterday.

He was so excited.

So was I!

I didn't cry when I dropped him off.

Neither did he.

He told me I could leave.

I celebrated a little bit.

Yes, it is bittersweet. He's my baby.

However, he is ready to have his OWN thing.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

MOMS who cook

Are you in a quandry?

A pickle?

Wondering what to cook for dinner?

Or maybe your just looking for a Carmel Corn recipe.

Well have no fear, MOMs who Cook is here.

After many months of lurking and secretly trying out their recipes, I have joined in the fun at MOMs who Cook.

So head on over to check it out for might just find a new family favorite!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

So long summer, we'll miss you..........