Monday, April 27, 2009

My Boy is a Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do!!!

He's official...he can kick your butt in a single bound...he can break 4 boards and he can stick with something for 3 1/2 years to complete a goal...pretty impressive!  Yep, my boy is a black belt and he's so proud (guess what?  Mom and Dad are too!)  It was a long day but it was fun and so cool to see Ben work so hard to accomplish a goal.  This boy continues to amaze me!  I can't wait to see what else he can do in his lifetime!!  WAY TO GO BEN...YOU ROCK!

Friday, April 3, 2009


Hello Spring...Hello happy children...Hello New Dog!  Yep, we did it!  We finally found a rescue dog @ the shelter.  She is 2 and a girl (obviously) and black and white and so far so good.  I don't ask for a lot from a dog...I just want her to do her business outside and not bite far so good.  Here she is tolerating Emily putting a tiera on her because Emily thinks girl dogs should want to dress up like real girls...poor dog!  Anyway, enjoy spring (or the lack there of) and come by and visit my Lucy!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

WE MADE BREAD! IT WORKED! (and other interesting things.)

It took me 5 tries but when I finally asked my 6 year old to help me (and got a better recipe from my sister) IT WORKED!  It did everything it was suppose to and it was tasted great and I feel truly cool for knowing that Laura Ingalls Wilder had nothing on me! 

 We have been so busy...who knew that in the middle of a cold and long winter we could be so busy.  I am so tired lately from being cold all the time.  I've even started exercising everyday to try and "wake me up" a bit.  I am also hoping the daily sweat will help me shed my lovely new winter back fat!!!  Not really looking forward to getting into a swimsuit in a month with all my extra rolls.  We'll see.

One of the things that is keeping us busy is Emily's ice skating classes on Saturdays.  She LOVES to skate and is so happy to get ready and go.  Being the best big brother (and being reminded that she has been dragged along twice a week for 4 years to Oswego for Tae Kwon Do) Ben happily tags along, DS in hand to hang out in the ice rink while sissy plays Ice Princess.  It is surprisingly packed at the rink on Saturdays, lots of budding Olympians!  

Today I am off to put my lovely Cricut to good use.  I bought some vinyl and I am making words for Ben's bathroom wall.  I am hoping to cut out "May the force be with you" to put over his toilet...the humor is not lost on him!   When and if I am successful, I will post a photo...until then cross your fingers that it's not the "Bread Disaster" all over again...vinyl is much more expensive than flour and yeast!!!

ps the photo of the bread was taken by my helper...she's obviously got a better angle!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Be Mine


I know I am a bit early but maybe I am the very first to say it to you so that's special right?  I have been trying all day to be in the Valentine mood...because I was the happy room mom today for the kindergarten room and the 4th grade.  I do like being a room mom and secretly it's the best way to see my kids enjoy some of the best moments of being a kid (and getting the photo evidence!)

So their Valentines turned out GREAT and dumb me...I didn't get a photo of either kid's masterpieces!  Ugh!  But, I'll tell you about it...Ben's valentines were mini ipods made out of small conversation boxes covered in red construction paper and string for the headset complete with mini Reece peanut butter cup earphones.  Emily handed out homemade animal print bracelets with a note that says "I'm wild about you".  They all turned out pretty cute.  Ben's Valentine box we made into a giant ipod.  
Do you remember the fun of delivering each Valentine card to your classmates and then the sheer joy of reading all the notes to you?  It's like blog reading every day as an adult.  Ben has saved every valentine card since kindergarten and I still catch him pulling them out to read every now and again.  It's pretty cute!

I have to run and take Ben to Tae Kwon Do but let me be the first to say "Happy Valentine's Day to you...Be Mine...Say Yes...Kiss Me"...ok maybe that went a bit too far...but have a LOVEly weekend.  I will post some more 365 photos soon!

Friday, February 6, 2009

A Little Bit of 365....

I feel orange today.  Kinda better than I have all that's good.  I got my toes painted all cute this morning.  Red.  For Valentine's Day.  It felt good to soak my feet in warm water and have them rubbed while being massaged by a chair.  Especially after being sick all week.  So, I have cute toes, I am coming close to the end of my 2008 year book and I got all my 2007 photos organized for the LOM (Library of Memories-Big Picture Scrapbooking-Stacy Julian) class I start next week.  I also made homemade chocolate chip cookies, started Emily's Valentines (I will post those when we finish), and folded my last load of clothes from yesterday's marathon laundry mission.  I have been a busy girl today. 

 Anyway, I had the chance to download my latest 365 photos and I wanted to share some of them with you.  Em is standing on the Joliet Park District ice rink...we've discovered "Open Skate" during the weekday afternoons and we've had quite a blast going skating in the afternoons (good exercise for the thighs).   I also took one of Ben at Tae Kwon Do.  The first 5 minutes of class is "meditation time" and I really think Ben enjoys this down time.  For those of you who "Facebook" you may remember the day I spent organizing 1038 Lego pieces (made a rookie parenting error on Christmas Eve when we didn't limit him opening ALL his Lego boxes, thus mixing all the pieces.)  It ended up being quite an undertaking but one that Ben and I took on with thought and determination and although it took over 3 hours...we were able to locate and organize all the pieces...(side note: I am not the crazy nut my darling husband thought I was for saving every applesauce and mandrine orange cup...they proved quite handy in the Lego organizing department...YEAH MOM!)   Some days I have more than one photo to share so I use the smaller pockets below and eliminate or double up the journaling.

I am finding that I either have too many options for each day or not enough.  One day this week I took a photo of all the Lia Sophia jewelry boxes that were delivered from our "Mother/Daughter Jewelry Party".  Other days I find myself wanting to capture the moment one photo I took of Ben and our neighbor (his bud) Dylan playing Playstation one morning before school.  I want to remember how important "Play Time" is to Ben.   His world revolves around playing ... still.  Some day it will revolve around girls and friends.  ***sigh*** 

 Anyway, some weeks I keep up quite well and other weeks, like this week, I put the week together in a day or so.  Today is that day ... so have a great weekend...I'll post our Valentines when we finish...Ben's are pretty cute too...and keep taking those photos ladies!
ps.  I have to give kuddos to Comcast's "ONDEMAND"'s amazing!  I can pull up a kid friendly, vintage cartoon at whim and keep the girlfriend busy while I spend time clicking away at the computer...thanks Comcast!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Too Busy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love weekends but when they are really busy I feel like I've accomplished nothing and that they go by way too fast.  This past weekend (which is technically still in progress but winding down) we had a Fun Fair, playdate, Sunday School, church, swimming birthday party and needless to say we are all fighting colds this bitterly cold winter season!  So, I haven't had a chance to really spend time in my happy place, or get my 365 together for the week or get all the laundry done like I like to or clean the house or grocery shop.  (phew, I guess I try to accomplish too much!)  Anyway, I am always amazed how challenging things get when you don't feel your best.  I'm not sick enough to stay home in bed but just sick enough not too feel too good and not want to do anything.  So, my house is a mess, my fridge is empty and my scrapbook a week behind, but I have had time to snuggle with my sweet daughter, watch my kids have a riot at a Fun Fair that I used to enjoy when I was a child,  and see them swim in the dead of winter.  So, although I have hampers full of dirty clothes, when I put my kiddos to bed tonight, I will have happy, smiling faces!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Snow Day Snow Day Happy Happy Snow Day

I know people think I'm nuts...but I still love snow days.  I still feel like a little kid when we get the news that it is so bitter or snowy that we should all just stay home.  But, I somehow think that my thunder was stolen when this new superintendent of schools went to an automatic call system.  Yes, it's efficient, yes it's quick and yes, we were notified last night in the nine o'clock hour that our kiddos were home today...but where is the anticipation of it all???  I remember listening to WJOL radio, patiently, wishing they would stop jabbering and just tell us all ready if our school was closed.  They'd tempt you with the thought by telling you they had school closings to report but you'd have to wait until 3's or after this interview or after a long, never ending chain of commercials...ugh!  I wanted to know as soon as possible!!!   And then the moment we all waited for...THE SCHOOL CLOSINGS!  They'd read the list, alphabetically of course, and I'd wait, sitting at the edge of my kitchen chair with my face as close to the radio as possible...and when they finally said the name of my school....I'd yelp and cheer like they had just won the state championship in something.  And then I'd be so happy that I didn't HAVE   to get up and go to school....but I was WAY too pumped to go back to sleep....agh!   The agony of it all!  Now that I think about it...I did get to sleep in getting up and making unnecessary peanut butter maybe this automatic call system thing isn't so bad after all.  "Didn't have them in my day but ya know I had to walk up hill, 2 miles, in the snow to school..."  or so I'll tell my children!  So, if you are reading this and you are fortunate enough to have a snow day too (Kiki, Christine, Sara) then enjoy your day!  If you, however are reading this while wearing a pair of shorts....go jump in the lake!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Ice Princess!!!

I am known to hate cold weather.  I can admit's just too...too...cold.   Really, I mean in the Midwest it gets "bone chillingly" cold...not to sound cliche.  But I have been THAT cold, many times!  (Last night is one example.)  At times like this I must take a hot bath, sit by the fireplace (very close) or just suck it up and buy a ticket to Florida to "thaw my bones".  But...I am turning over a new leaf.  Yep!  I am embracing this cold weather after 38 years.  I mean really, I went to the University of Iowa for 4 about cold weather!  And I married a wonderful man from HERE and his career keeps him HERE until we retire.  So, I am going to list all the things I like about winter...  here we go.

1.  UGGS (so cute and so warm!)
2.  everything so white and quiet
3.  the cozy things associated with winter...soup making, fires crackling, snuggling
4.  cute sweaters, coats, hats and scarves
5., I'm out!  

See, just the obvious things to love about winter, things that are obviously good about winter but these items could be tackled with a nice trip to Wisconsin for the weekend!

BUT NOW I HAVE A REAL AND TRUE REASON TO LOVE took my adorable pink daughter to show me that winter is awesome when you have your own ice skating rink and new ice skates (courtesy of Santa) and can spend HOURS pretending to be the Ice Princess (Disney movie...not bad...kinda cute).  So, people, if you are like me and don't really enjoy the winter season...come on over, I'll make you a cup of cocoa or tea and you can sit with me and watch my very happy 6 year old enjoy winter more than I ever have...and her happiness is contagious too!

And...check out the heartwarming photo of her brother HELPING  her skate at of the reasons I always wanted a brother...too cute!  I just love that boy to pieces!

Friday, January 9, 2009


Did you hear it? Al Frankin won a Senate seat in Minnesota and I think we need Stewart
Smalley in government! Do you remember Stewart from SNL? Did you ever see "Stewart
Saves the Family"??? If you haven't, it's Friday night, stop at the video store today and RENT
IT!!!! It's such a great will love Stewart...he's endearing...he's lovable...he does self
affirmations! My favorite scene from the movie (without giving anything away) is when he asks
his sister Jody, who struggles with her weight, as she's freaking out about a family tragedy how
quickly she could get to a pound cake?? You have to love it! So next election...get out and vote
and write in Stewart Smalley...and see the won't be disappointed!!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Happy New Year!  Well, I finally downloaded my Dec. photos (while I cleaned Chris' office and threw in laundry) and I am sitting down in honor of my sister and my eldest niece and updating my blog.  I don't even know what to was a great holiday...loads of fun and family and lots of days in my pj's with the kiddos.  How lucky am I?  I was happy that school was back in session though...I needed to clean my house and get back into the "groove".  This week I've cleaned like a mad"merchandised" some areas and started working on Uddy's office...the man needs to spiff up his space and I am just the girl to do it!  We are painting the bathroom in the basement a really nice grey/blue and getting new towels and a rug and some new accessories.  I also want to invest in some of that cute organizational wall "stuff" for Uddy's office.  I love a new year and a new start...if I only got that excited about excercise I'd be so skinny!  Oh well!  Here are some of my favorite shots over break...ENJOY GIRLS!!!