Monday, June 30, 2008

Another great FHE!

For FHE, we sang some pioneer songs, and then the thunder and lightening storm started outside.
We turned off the lights, watched it, counted the thunder and had a nice little chat.



We started a family sleep over in the front room, but the girls decided their beds were much nicer and dragged themselves off to bed.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Cool and Clean - Organizational Bliss



It piled up - I was busy with school for the past two years, and added seminary onto the top. The understatement is that it piled up.

I spent over 10 hours yesterday organizing and reorganizing and it is finally clean! Our basement is finally very livable and a great place to be! Complete with and organized laundry room, organized food storage, organized clothing storage, and craft area as well. The ping pong table works again (thanks to dad who fixed it in Dec.) and the foosball table is roaring away.

Once again - it is an enjoyable family playroom, and a considerable 15-20* cooler than the upper areas of our home!

Hooray!

FHE




Our FHE last week actually turned out to be quite the debacle.
The girls have becoming adept at using kitchen tools (yes knives, gasp!) and have been helping cut up fruit and everything else in preparing our meals. We spent a large amount of time making shish ka bobs. I found a great recipe in a southwestern cook book for shrimp, bacon and pineapple ones and we thought we'd try them (think Hawaiian pizza.) So - we set off on our task.

We were halfway through the grilling process when our friend Frank showed up. Now Frank has spent many many Monday evenings with us and knows us fairly well and vice versa. As he came in, that little niggle in the back of my head rang the warning bell and I asked him about shrimp. Apparently, Frank doesn't eat shrimp (and I'm sure I'd forgotten.)

We ended up with pizza for dinner (after all that work!) We even forgot to eat the fruit that the girls cut up for us!

Anyways - Frank volunteered to do the FHE AND the dessert tomorrow night! Guess we won't be having shrimp!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Serious Stuff

I got some interesting information today - How would you respond if:

You found out that a registered sexual predator moved to your neighborhood and lived behind you?

What would you tell your kids?

Would you be more wary when your spouse was out for the evening, or on a business trip?

Would you change the way you did things? Like what?


Yeah - it is a little on my mind as it is happening here. Not directly behind us, but on the street behind us, and totally within view of my backyard (where my kids constantly play and hang out.) I guess I can be comforted that a cop lives right across the street from them. Anyways - I think it has really changed how I'm thinking about things.

A couple of months ago our town had a meeting about a similar issue - on the bright side, at least this person is registered and being monitored. Statistically speaking, it is those who are hiding underground that are really the big concern.

I've been saving up for today

So - we are now in the throes of sleeping in and staying up late. It is beautiful! Oh my.
So, as all we do every day is clean the house and then library and park hop and play outside - ah the life!
So - I've been saving a list to post on a day when I needed a posting but didn't have a lot to say (yes, miracle I know.)

I saw this on a friend's blog...it was a HUGE list of things and you were to highlight things you have done and leave the other things blank. I took out the things I haven't done and left in (and added) the things I have done.

1) Slept under the stars
2) Stayed up all night and watched the sunrise
3) Changed a baby's diaper
4) Watched a meteor shower
5) Given more than you can afford to charity
6) Climbed a mountain
7) Held a tarantula
8) Said "I love you" and meant it
9) Stayed up all night long and watched the sun rise
10) Gone to a huge sports game
11) Grown and eaten your own vegetables
12) Made jam
13) Canned vegetables
14) Walked behind a waterfall
15) Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
16) Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
17) Had a pillow fight
18) Taken a sick day when you're not ill
19) Built a snow fort
20) Held a lamb
21) Taken an ice cold bath
22) Had a meaningful conversation with a beggar
23) Seen a total eclipse
24) Ridden a roller coaster
25) Hit a home run
26) Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
27) Adopted an accent for fun
28) Felt very happy about your life, even for just a moment
29) Loved your job 90% of the time
30) Had enough money to be truly satisfied
31) Gone rock climbing
32) Gone on a midnight walk on the beach
33) Ever bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
34) Bench-pressed your own weight
35) Milked a cow
36) Alphabetized your personal files
37) Sung karaoke
38) Lounged around in bed all day
39) Gone scuba diving
40) Kissed in the rain
41) Played in the mud
42) Gone to a drive-in theater
43) Done something you should regret, but don't
44) Started a business
45) Made cookies from scratch
46) Got flowers for no reason
47) Been in a combat zone
48) Spoken more than one language fluently
49) Gotten into a fight while attempting to defend someone
50) Bounced a check
51) Read - and understood - your credit report
52) Recently bought and played with a favorite childhood toy
53) Found out something significant that your ancestors did
54) Called or written your Congress person
55) Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
56) Helped an animal give birth
57) Been fired or laid off from a job
58) Won money
59) Broken a bone
60) Ridden a motorcycle
61) Driven any land vehicle at a speed of greater than 100 mph
62) Made and eaten cactus soup
63) Eaten sushi
64) Had your picture in the newspaper
65) Read The Bible cover to cover
66) Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
67) Gotten someone fired for their actions
68) Gone back to school
69) Changed your name
70) Caught a fly in the air with your bare hands
71) Eaten fried green tomatoes
72) Read The Iliad
73) Taught yourself an art from scratch
74) Apologized to someone years after inflicting the hurt
75) Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
76) Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
77) Dyed your hair (how many times and colors?)
78) Been a DJ
79) Rocked a baby to sleep
80) Raked your carpet (ahh..those 70’s)
81) Brought out the best in people
82) Brought out the worst in people
83) Worn a mood ring (wearing one right now!)
84) Ridden a horse
85) Carved an animal from a piece of wood or bar of soap
86) Cooked a dish where four people asked for the recipe
87) Shot a basketball into a basket
88) Danced at a disco
89) Played in a band
90) Tutored someone
91) Ridden a train
92) Brought an old fad back into style
93) Eaten caviar
94) Let a salesman talk you into something you didn’t need
95) Pieced a quilt (how many?)
96) Lived in an historic place
97) Acted in a play or performed on a stage
98) Asked for a raise
99) Made a hole-in-one
100) Gone deep sea fishing
101) Gone roller skating
102) Spent the night in a 5-star luxury suite
103) Sang a solo
104) Gone spelunking
105) Learned how to take a compliment
106) Written a love-story
107) Written a fan letter
108) Owned a St. Bernard or Great Dane
109) Learned to juggle
110) Been a boss
111) Gone on a diet
112) Found an arrowhead or a gold nugget
113) Written a poem
114) Carried your lunch in a lunchbox
115) Gotten food poisoning
116) Gone on a service, humanitarian or religious mission
117) Sat on a park bench and fed the ducks
118) Worn knickers
119) Attended the Olympics
120) Can hula or waltz
121) Read dozens of Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys books
122) Had a revelatory dream
123) Thought you might crash in an airplane
124) Had a song dedicated to you on the radio or at a concert
125) Know how to tat, smock or do needlepoint
126) Laughed till your side hurt
127) Straddled the equator
128) Taken a photograph of something other than people that is worth framing
129) Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
130) Donated blood or plasma
131) Built a campfire
132) Kept a blog
133) Had hives
134) Made a PowerPoint presentation
135) Served at a soup kitchen
136) Know CPR
137) Ridden in or owned a convertible
138) Found a long lost friend
139) Lived in a foreign country
140) Eaten snail soup
141) Laughed until you cried
142) Written an autobiography
143) Visited all of the American continents
144) Eaten pig cheeks, ears, and intestines
145) Chopped wood
146) Done laundry by hand
147) Drawn water by hand
148) Caught a lizard’s tail
149) Been on TV
150) Walked to school
151) Changed a bedpan
152) Taught someone to walk

Monday, June 23, 2008

Motorcade

No, it isn't a new video or x box game - we got stuck in it on Sunday on our way home from church.
We were merrily rolling along and we saw 10 police cars blocking the road ahead. Wow - what an accident I thought, and then panicked since many of our friends also travel that road to get to and from church - I sure hope it isn't someone we know!


As you may know, we have the fortune of living near an airport. Therefore, each year, when Dick Cheney (yes the VP of the US) comes to our area for an economic summit, everything is closed down. All roads, sidestreets, and freeway on and off ramps.


After waiting for a while, 10 more (at least) police vehicles showed up, and then a long procession of cars. Unfortunately I didn't have my camera (don't usually take it to church with me,) but I found some motorcade photos on the web that might sort of do the justice. We saw a couple of limos following several police cars, and then the black SUV's (of course), followed by several more black SUV's and finally several more police cars and finally an ambulance.


It was quite exciting... almost as exciting as when my husband has been called at the hospital by the white house to arrange telephone lines for this annual occasion, and once when we joined him in meeting with the SS to take care of those lines (by the way those SS guys aren't very friendly or talkative, we learned the hard way.)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Southern Colorado Adventures

So the girls and I played a little hooky...
We had planned to visit Denver for a couple of days, but changed our mind and went to Poncha Springs instead. Don't ask where it is - I'm not really sure.
We stayed with a good friend and camped on her floor.
While on our trip, we had many adventures.
We....traveled a bunch and visited a tiny town named Crestone - (not actually on purpose.)
We went to Sand Dunes National Park which was VERY cool. There was a big river running and the girls loved getting in it and splashing and playing around - they call it Colorado's beach.



When the wind started blowing and the clouds came up, we laid on the other beach (nearest the sand dunes) which had VERY warm sand. We categorized rocks and then climbed some dunes. Some of us even rolled and swam down them!
Then - it started to rain and we raced to the car, and got in just before the hail started coming down. Typical Colorado afternoon summer storm!

Afterwards, we traveled to the famous GATOR FARM - always an adventure.
We all held a gator (no tape on his mouth this time!) and took the tour. We got stuck for a while when a gator was lying in our path...we had to wait 15 minutes until they could come put him back through the hole he'd made in the fence. The girls bough alligator teeth as souvenirs.


Later in the week we decided to hang out in Salida. We visited a few fun shops, and then found a BEAD shop! The girls were in heaven and each made their own little bracelet creation.

We spent the night in Vail, made a quick run to Walmart for some flip flops, and then hung out at some of the great Vail parks this morning before making our way back home.



While vacations are fun, Dorthy was right.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Better late than never

Here are some photos from the last day of school a couple of weeks ago. The kids did an awesome art project and had a blast!
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Sweet and Sour?



What a gorgeous day!! Days like today, are the reason why I (and many locals) live where we do. The slogan is - come for the snow, stay for the summer. It really is true - although it snowed on Monday up valley. Freaky weather!

Tuesday was beautiful. We met some friends at the park and played all day long. 4 hours at the park, then to the friends' house for a while, then the friends came over for a babysitting swap. The weather was gorgeous- just those cloudless crystal blue skies that I love, lots of sun and a nice breeze. Gorgeous!

I went out walking early this morning as the sun was beginning to rise. What a peaceful time of day. Dew glistens on the grass (where it isn't iced), birds chirp and hop along,wind chimes faintly tinkle and hum, and the minty smell of sage lingers in the air. All is quiet and still - what beauty!

I guess the purpose of this posting is to clarify - despite my incessant posts regarding the abysmal winter we had,...I love where I live, days like today remind me of this - I guess the lesson in this is that we have to taste the bitter to appreciate the sweet - and I am appreciating the sweet today! Bring on the sunshine!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A shorty

So - I think I'm finally out of the funk. I vented, I cleaned, I was possibly difficult to live with, and I think I got it out of my system for a while. It must have been hormone induced. I think that due to my normal lack of the hormonal roller coaster, neither I nor my family have any idea how to react when they appear - it must be because I've started doing more exercise or something...
Cleaned a little today, went to the park - got sunburned - I did the SPF 50 AND wore a baseball cap.. I just forgot the backs of my calves and backs of my arms. I guess if you spend the day outside for 4+ hours - you are bound to get SOME sun. Had a great talk with a friend - thanks for listening and letting me vent - REALLY appreciate it - and for the call.
A dear friend passed away last week. She was the second person I met when we moved to Co., and I worked with her for almost a year. We spent quite a bit of time with this family right when we moved in. She was a bit of a surrogate mother to me when I really didn't know anyone. She was ready and I know she's in a better place - but I'm going to miss her - Thanks for everything EVA.
I'll be playing in her funeral on Thursday, then for the Relay for Life (Cancer fund raiser) on Friday and finally a wedding on Saturday.
I'm glad I can share my music and help others - a small and possibly insignificant thing, but a blessing I am glad to share.
That's all - we're back up!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Likes and Dislikes

Gratitude List #2

*House
*Yard
*Bed
*Car
*Pillow

*A cute guy to snuggle with
*Two cute kids to examine sparkled rocks with
*A cat that catches lots of mice and birds (and usually does not bring them inside)

*I can state my opinion freely
*I can express myself with music
*I have a few close friends who (maybe) want to hear my opinion

*I am healthy
*My kids are healthy
*My husband is healthy

*I am finished with school
*My kids are finished with school for the summer
*SUNSHINE and Vitamin D

*Lime juice
*Cilantro
*Cumin
*Pico de gallo

*A sewing machine
*Good books
*Recipes
*A deep freezer

*Gardening
*Drip systems
*Shady trees
*Springtime flowers
*The end of allergy season
*Cold medicine and cough drops

*Someone to wake up with
*Someone who calls me mom
*People to cook for
*Late night movies
*Girls nights
*Pedicures
*Dishwashers
*Computers and blogs
*Friends who call and to do stuff with

*Sleeping in (did I already say that one?)
*A quiet house
*Ups and downs
*People who need me


Things I do daily
*Brush my teeth
*Shower
*Cook a meal (or two or three)
*Wear lotion and makeup
*Check my e-mail
*Listen to music
*Hum a tune
*Clean some part of my house

Things I do weekly
*Invite someone for dinner (or lunch etc)
*Sew
*Read a book
*Go to the park and library
*Go to church
*Laundry
*Get licked by someone's dog
*Play a musical instrument
*Check my garden
*Look for recipes on the internet
*Update my blog
*Change bedsheets
*Vacuum and Mop all floors
*Grocery shop
*Play cribbage with J, L, or the computer
*Teach a lesson

Things I do monthly
*Clean out the car
*Travel somewhere
*Pedicure (monthly + 2 or 3 weeks)
*Organize something
*Plan a menu
*Let my kids talk me into something
*Fast

Favorite things to do
*Read
*Cook
*Sew
*Garden
*Wrestle with my kids
*Take a nap
*Go to the library or park
*Make an elaborate meal
*Create

Things I hate:
*Grumpy people
*People who don't like me
*Unkempt hair (on certain individuals - it makes me crazy)
*Seaweed
*Swallowing water at the pool
*Wearing a bathing suit in public
*Being interrupted during a thought
*Rap music
*Bad weather - bad roads
*Guilt trips and manipulation
*Shrieking children
*Whining
*Liver, brussel sprouts, eggplant, fruit punch, fruit cocktail

Things I love
*Classical music
*My family
*Where I live (except the snow)
*Clean air and crystal blue skies
*Starry skies
*Airplanes
*Beaches
*Warm sunshine
*Growing gardens
*Salt City candles - Watermelon, Pomegranate
*Smelly things - incense, perfumes, lotions,
*Garlic and onions being sauteed in olive oil
*Sweet basil
*Foot massages
*Uncracked heels
*Early morning walks and talks
*Being done exercising for the day
*Addictive books
*Hanging out with my family
*Tortillas hot from the comal with lime juice and salt
*Laughing with friends
*Giggling with girlfriends
*Fresh pineapple
*Cold water coconuts
*Simplicity

Down down

I'm feeling a bit blue tonight - could be due to lack of sleep - every now and then I get this way - but that's how it is. I should go to sleep rather than think about things - it seems like I get like this and then write emotional letters and really mess things up.
Here's a four day re-cap.
I woke up with a sore throat on Thursday. My husband was sick and we had to go and fetch him from work. On Friday, my throat was really bad, and Saturday even worse. I had a gig on Friday - there was an art walk - I and my violinist played - definitely could have been better - but it was outdoors, windy, new music, and our first gig together for the season - good thing it was casual. I've got 5 more gigs coming up this month - getting kind of crazy! Sat am we got up fresh and early (even though I REALLY wanted to really sleep in because I've been sick) and rushed to the dentist (2 hours away). It is a good thing the dentist is my cousin - cause I love him. I REALLY hate dentists and especially going. However, when we go, our kids get to play with some of their cousins (albeit 2nd or something like that) and so it works out well. No one had any cavities either - that's a blessing. Maybe that 6 month program DOES work!
We got home last night and got people to bed, and then I was up until 1:30 writing a talk on Work and Personal Responsibility. It seemed to go fairly well - after that, I studied for the primary class I was substituting in today. Got up this am - rushed to church...came home tried to nap but didn't get one, then picked some rhubarb - first of the season for a pie, and the new neighbors came over for dinner. Cleaned up the kitchen and I think I'm ready to fall over. Did I mention I LOVE summer days when NO ONE has to get up for ANYTHING in the morning?? It is true - I do - I am sleeping in tomorrow!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Still waiting for summer

No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks...
School's out and what do we get???
So here it is - I received this from Emergency.org this morning - today's forecast - lovely.

WINTER-LIKE WEATHER HAS RETURNED TO THE HIGH COUNTRY.

.A LATE SEASON STORM WILL CONTINUE TO BRING SNOW TO THE MOUNTAINS
OF WESTERN CO THIS AFTERNOON. SNOW LEVELS WILL REMAIN NEAR
8500 FEET CREATING WINTER DRIVING CONDITIONS OVER THE HIGHER
MOUNTAIN PASSES & ROADWAYS WITH SNOW.ICE & SLUSH POSSIBLE.

My friend just drove over two of the passes and said it was absolutely awful.

Now add that to all of the e-mails I've been getting about our crazy flooding- could these be signs? I stopped by a friend's house this morning - her entire yard is under 1-2 feet of water. I drove up and thought - oh what a pretty pond on the side of the house - that must be new, I don't remember it... then I realized what it was.. Plain crazy.

Guess we're still waiting for summer...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Monday, June 2, 2008

Yes, I'm posting like crazy - please keep up!

We just had too much happen today that was funny and I had to share.
I got a call regarding a phone survey I recently did... they wanted to drop by a $500 certificate for free stuff from an internet store tonight for 30 minutes - all I had to do was listen to a presentation and do a 10 question questionnaire at the end on the presentation.

Needless to say - ever heard of RAINBO? Well this was BLUE STAR!! Yes - a vacuum system. Honestly, I am quite happy with my oblivion. I prefer NOT to know how much sand and dirt is really in my couch, and on my floor. So what if this cleans my air, mops and sweeps my floor, and picks up steelies. It was $3,000. If I gave them my old vacuum, and bought the demo model they would have given me $300 off! Then, after we said no, we got the whole, I'll pay the sales tax, (another $200) and give you my commission since my boss is taking the winner of the month to Hawaii (another $900 off).. pretty silly. Good thing my husband wasn't as grossed out as I was about all of the dirt.

The best part of the sales pitch was when he used the bathroom. Apparently the girls had been in there and left the TP on the floor, and a beautiful present in the potty.
Guess that's what happens when you come on family night and stay for forever.

For FHE, we had planned on going up into the mountains to a lake, but had some complications. We roasted marshmallows over and candle and made kitchen table smores! Great night despite the sales man. By the way - did I mention he was from Colorado Springs???

Welcome to the Twighlight Zone!

So I got a trippy phone call today - it went like this:
This is ____from Costco - we found a card of yours - call us back.

I called them back.

Them - Yes, someone found a card with Jeff's name on it in the parking lot.
Me - Really? What is the expiration date on it?
Them - #$*^%
Me - REALLY? Is the card number @#(%&*#$*(@)#$*(&%#?
Them - Yes - it has the bank name.........
Me - And you are the local Costco?
Them - Yep

Wow! So our card was stolen, was used in Colorado Springs for a little spree, and then was found back where we live one week later. I'm still trying to get my mind around that one! What a trip.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

 
 
 



As can be seen - this is what is happening at 8:39 pm at our house on Sunday night. The girls and my husband hanging out rolling around and wrestling around on the grass. Goodness we can't wait for school to be out where this doesn't make mornings SO difficult!
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May 26-June 1, 2008

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It has been a fairly eventful week. After getting home on Monday and trying to re-group and catch up on Tuesday, I received a phone call regarding the theft of one of our cards, and it's use in Colorado Springs. It was used five times before we were aware and could freeze the card. As such, I spent lots of time this week on the phone and faxing documents. It has been a long week in that aspect - what a pain. Hopefully our new cards will come soon and it will all even out!

Additionally this week, we had a birthday I began to throw together on Tuesday. A friend and I had a great girls night out birthday party shopping at the local Walmart one evening. It was great to have some girl time and laugh and giggle without anyone whining - 'can I have this pleeeeeeeassssse??' We didn't get home until 11:30 - it was much needed.
The birthday dawned and we made a clown cake, and then had somewhere upwards of thirty kids that showed up-some we didn't even know! The kids started with pizza, played red rover, did the water balloon toss - which ended up as a water fight and playing under spraying water - totally spontaneous, but possibly the highlight. While we did presents, a 'wise guy' began making their balloon screech, which then turned into 30+ balloons screeching. It was a cacophony (learned that word with my greek and latin roots in Mrs. O's class in 10th grade.) Finally, we turned it into an orchestra, and the kids screeched their balloons and stopped screeching them on demand. It was pretty fun.
Finally, we ended the party with a big old piƱata. What fun!
Everyone left, and we ran out the door to our eldest's school spring concert.
We spent the weekend organizing and working the neighborhood clean up day and community lunch as well as finishing up several outdoor products. We finally got the hosing run, and most of the garden planted. All four of us were covered with sun and dirt last night as we limped in doors. Phew... we got most of it!

This week we are looking forward to school plays, my meeting and presenting a proposal regarding the closure adjacent BLM property to the county commissioners, a weekend gig, and school finally being out. Can't wait for those lazy days of summer!