Saturday, December 27, 2008

Post Christmas blog

We had a nice 3 day long Christmas.

Christmas Eve we went to the children's mass & 2 parties.

Christmas morning we enjoyed family time and playing with Santa gifts. I think the biggest hit was guitar hero.


Christmas afternoon, we went to the ILs house. There was plenty of presents, food & fun. The kids got remote control trucks & planes & robots. They had a lot of fun playing with them until they drained the batteries!

Monster Truck

The day after Christmas we spent with my family. There was tons of mexican food, yummy tamales & fajitas. The kids exchanged presents.


I spent 5 hours yesterday morning making my gifts for sisters 2,4 & 5 plus Mom & Dad. Luckily I had to send gifts to sister #1 last week so only had 5 to make. My fingers are still sore from cutting all that paper. I got the template from A Little Hut. I've always loved her paper art but I have a new found respect for it. I didn't realize what it took to cut paper while following a dotted line. It was not as easy as I thought it would be. My pictures aren't great, lighting was bad, so it is hard to tell. Each month has the initial cut out and it is backed with a "theme" paper. I'm happy with how they turned out.

January - December

5 calendars done

So now that Christmas is over, I have to start planning for J's birthday. Only 3 more days to go.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Twas the day before Christmas

All through the house, the mother is scurrying ...

I don't have time to write a poem! I have so much to do today.

This morning the kids and I baked cutout cookies. I found the recipe through a comment on my friend's blog. I'm happy with the cookies. They are soft, puffy sugar cookies. I prefer them to hard crunchy ones.


I nixed the idea of making my own icing and letting the kids decorate with tips, etc. I asked DH to pick up 2 cans of icing on his way home. They can ice & use sprinkles. Santa will be happy.

I got an status email from job #2 which sent me into a panic. Luckily Backyardigans captured the attention of all 3 kids and I was able to handle it.

I've got the rest of my list to tackle

  • wrap presents
  • make presents
  • laundry
  • ice cookies
  • bathe children (better put it on the list, lest I forget)

Last night I was able to finish my cowl.


At least that's one less thing on my list. Of course, now that I've got the knitting itch back, I'm sitting here thinking of what I can start knitting next instead doing all of the above. I think it will be a shawl for the school casino night. Is anyone up for a Melon-along?

Friday, December 19, 2008

Close to Christmas

The Christmas countdown is 6 days. The cousin countdown is 2 days.

Both kids had their Christmas performances and today is the last day of school.



I have tons of things to do that I'm avoiding. Mostly work. I'm going to have to hunker down and get some done one of these nights. I also have to finish making family Christmas presents, wrapping presents, buying presents, baking cookies, etc.

What I have been doing is knitting.

I finished A's scarf

I made another ornament for a teacher gift

I started this cowl with leftover yarn from A&J's scarves. I think the color is interesting, but I'm not superthrilled with it. I may dye it again.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Cabled Ornament

Yesterday I decided to knit an ornament. I think it turned out cute. We have a Christmas party to go to tonight. It will make a nice hostess gift.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Home from Vegas

We arrived home yesterday from our weekend in Vegas. I survived the marathon. It went much better than last year. I wasn't in nearly as much pain the next day and I cut almost 10 minutes off of my time. I not so nearly inclined to say that I would never do it again.

Vegas was Vegas. It will never be my favorite spot. I got enough of it to last me another 5-10 years. I did gamble, a little craps & blackjack plus some betting on the ponies. I was down about $150 until the last night I got a streak going at blackjack and I managed to come home $1.00 down. That's a feat for Vegas. We stayed at the Bellagio which was very nice. Here's the view from our hotel window.


My favorite part of the trip was going to see Hoover Dam. I wanted see it the last time I went to Vegas and that didn't work out. DH planned our trip so I could go this time. Isn't he sweet?

The side of the dam. I had my big lens on and I couldn't capture the whole thing. It was too big.

The turbines

View from the vent tunnel



Friday, December 5, 2008

Off to Vegas

I'm off to Vegas tomorrow morning. We're going to run the half marathon. It's been a whole year since we went to Jamaica. I'm seriously crazy. I said I would never do that again. I'm not sure why I am. I lost my motivation about 2 weeks ago. Hopefully I'll finish, but there's a sag wagon in case I totally break down.

Even if I do poorly, I'm ready for sleeping with no interruption by wet toddlers & playing some craps.

Next year, when DH & BIL propose another trip like this, I'm insisting on a place with a 10K. No more 13 miles for me! I swear it this time.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


The family (minus B who's sporting a bad cold right now) went to do the Turkey Trot. That was crazy busy and I think I'll skip it from now on or at least until all children can run by themselves. It was not fun trying to push a double jogging stroller through hordes of people who think they are out for a nice slow morning stroll. It was not much exercise, but it was a lovely morning weather wise.

Everyone came over for Thanksgiving. It was a typical turkey day, too much food and kids running around like crazy.

We celebrated B's birthday. He turns 3 tomorrow. He had a great day despite his cold. I managed to create an almost recognizable Diego cake.



Wednesday, November 26, 2008

It only took 10 years for her to stab me!

Today was prep day for Thanksgiving. The kids were spending the day with the ILs. I had a list of chores to get done. Clean house, bake pies, make birthday cake for B, make stuffing. Lots to do. I didn't anticipate a stabbing.

Here's what happened. DH wanted an apple pie for Thanksgiving. (See, this was all his fault!) I was using my mother's apple peeler/corer/slicer thing. Its a fun thing. The kids love to use it. DH had never seen it in action. He thought it was cool. I asked him if he wanted to use it to slice up the last of the apples.

DH was on one side of the counter peeling/slicing/coring the apples. I was standing on the opposite side of the counter using a paring knife to get some little bits of core out of the apples. DH tried to pull the apple core off the tool but it was stuck. He yanked and his hand flew out and hit the paring knife. It stabbed him in the palm of his left hand just above the wrist. He started screaming and cursing and blood started spurting all over. He ran from the room grabbing his hand with blood flying. I stood there in shock for a moment. I grabbed a wet washcloth and started trying to clean up the blood. I then saw it on the wall and on the floor and on the bathroom door. It was everywhere. DH had his hand under rushing water in the bathroom. I grabbed a towel, got his hand out of the sink and told him to put pressure on it. I told him to go to the car while I found keys and a cell phone. He didn't go, he just stood there. I told him to get in the car again. He finally whispered that he couldn't open the door. I finally found my stuff and got us both in the car.

I drove off intending to go to the ER. I called my sister to come turn off the oven so my pumpkin pie wouldn't burn. We ended up stopping at a PrimaCare. I still fairly panicked because DH was complaining about feeling very faint. (I think it was fear and pain, not blood loss.) I really started to lose it when I had to fill out the paperwork and the accident report. I had to give the reason for the visit. I really wanted to put "KNIFE WOUND" but I decided that it sounded too gangster so I wrote "CUT" instead. It all struck me as very funny and I started laughing, then I started crying, saying I was sorry. DH thought I was crazy for crying since I stabbed him not myself.

In the end, I left DH at the clinic to get fixed up and I went home and finished making the apple pie. He survived my stabbing with 3 stitches. But he did tell the doctor it only took 10 years for her to stab me!

DH told me afterward that he was surprised that I didn't take out the camera and take pictures of his gushing blood for the blog. I was slightly offended because I didn't even think about until after I knew he was going to be okay. These post incident photos will have to do.

The bloody evidence!

From the garden

I planted lots of tomato & jalapeno plants at the beginning of the summer. The jalapenos have done wonderfully. We've had so many jalapenos, I give them away by the bagful. The tomato plants, on the other hand, did not fare so well. They had blossoms but never actually produced fruit. In late summer I got 3-4 small green tomatoes, no bigger in diameter than a quarter.

I gave up on the tomatoes until one day A came running inside. She had small green tomatoes in her hands. She said that B walked up with them saying, "I picked strawberries in the forest."


These small tomatoes ripened to a nice bright red. Yesterday Chris made salsa, our gardening dreams come true.


Monday, November 24, 2008

Keen contest

I don't own any of these shoes but I've always wanted a pair.

Win a pair of keens

Monday Morning Funny

I read the comics and laughed out loud this morning. I laughed so hard DH had to know what I was reading.

pearls before swine 11/24/2008

Too funny.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Say Cheese

From Susan:

The rules-

1. Go to your pictures file.
2. Go to the 4th file.
3. Go to the 4th picture.
4. Post it and tell the story.


This picture was taking in September. B walked up to me and told me he wanted to say cheese. It took me a couple of tries to figure out what he meant. He wanted his picture taken. I couldn't say no to a face like that!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Everything's changed

The boy figured out he can climb out of the crib.

It took 2 years, 11 months and 17 days. It was so nice while it lasted. If he was screaming/crying/annoying too much, I could just put him in the crib and tell him to take break and calm down. It was a source of refuge for me. I could put him in there and take a shower or do laundry without worrying about where he was and what he was getting into.

How are we going to get him to go to sleep? He can get out.

How are we going to get him to stay asleep? He can get out.

Pray for me. I think I'm going to need it.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Derby Day

And the racing begins!

The meanest car award

The gator racer at the finish

DH & J with their awards

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Is this really bad?

I'm trying to finish up some work. I have two outstanding issues with job number two. Kids are home and interrupting and it is hard to concentrate.

I haven't yelled or been really stressed out, but I did ask the kids to leave the room I'm in and go to the playroom.

Next thing I know, B is tapping me on the leg. He handed me a beer and said, "Here, this is for you. See, happy mommy!"

That's bad.

New stuff

J got new glasses today, camo glasses. He kind of freaked out when he first got them and refused to put them on, but he's happily wearing them now. J also got his new scarf today. It took me too many weeks to finish it. I thought it would never end, but it is finally done. He loves it.


My baby boy B is not such a baby anymore. Potty training has finally kicked in. It was Halloween that did the trick. He dressed as a football player and he wore the costume almost every day for a week. He told me "Football players don't wear diapers." and that was that. He has had a few accidents but he's good.

Today I tried to put him in a pullup to go to preschool. He would have nothing to do with it. So off he went to school, commando style. He's still not a big fan of underwear. I walked him into the classroom and he proudly told his teacher that he didn't do no diapers today. Before I had a chance to say anything she reached out to see his big boy underpants. Boy, she was surprised. He did well, no accidents, no problem. But I am going to buy him some Diego underwear for his birthday. Maybe then he will wear it.

The closest thing to heaven CJ's

If you've ever been to Notre Dame, then you should know CJ's. If you don't know CJ's, you should get to know it the next time you are there. CJ's is a dive of a bar at night, but during the day it is hamburger heaven. They serve huge burgers with special seasoning. They are so big sometimes they split apart. It is one thing I insist on having every time I go back to South Bend. CJ's is the reason to go to South Bend, especially with the state of football of late.

Today, I had the closest thing to CJ's that I've ever tried. Around 1 pm I had just come home from helping at the school book fair and was about to fix myself a turkey sandwich. Just then, DH called asking me if I wanted Wingfields. He had eaten there a few weeks ago and raved about it. I was so hungry I almost turned him down. Instead I chose to wait and try it. I'm so glad I did because this burger was great. It was huge and greasy and yummy.

I don't normally post pictures of half eaten food, but this burger was so seriously good I had to stop eating and take pictures to document it. If you ever come to Dallas, you need to include a trip to Wingfields.

The Burger

The Burger when I gave up

P.S. Except I couldn't give up. I paused, took a few deep breaths and finished the burger. I don't think I'll eat for day or two.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


The cousins came home for Halloween. A & J have been counting down the days & hours until they came home. A was determined to spend every possible moment with her cousin while she was here.

They arrived late on Thursday. She was up early Friday morning to go see them. The kids stayed at S#2 house while I went to parent teacher conferences & took J to get his glasses fixed. I picked up my kids & three cousins and we came home to carve pumpkins.

A & cousin E were industrious and carved their pumpkins all on their own.
A & E's pumpkins.

The others weren't so ambitious and the playing on the swingset was much more fun. I carved B's pumpkin with the face that cousin O drew. I carved M's pumpkin after she told me she wanted scary eyes, a triangle nose & a mouth with pointy teeth. J told me he wanted one just like M's but I had already done that design, so I just winged it.

The little kids' pumpkins

Around 5:00 we had the calgary cousins, the dallas cousins, my mom & dad & youngest sister plus 3 other families for dinner. One family left and 2 other families joined us for trick or treating.

The whole gang
The 3rd graders
The kindergarteners

I stayed home with 2 of the moms and handed out the candy, most of it accumulated at various parties the children have attended. I got rid of it all, including a valentine lollipop that had "To: A" written on it. That really grossed S#2 out but I'm just glad that it is all gone.

The cousins go back to Calgary tomorrow and the countdown to December 21st begins.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Just a reminder

Don't put your almost but not quite potty trained toddler to bed without a diaper on.

Because if you do, then at 1:30 am, you will be woken up by the toddler screaming, "Mommy, there's pee-pee in my pants." When you go to check on him, you realize that you forgot the diaper and it is everywhere. Then you have to give the child a quick sponge bath with wetwipes because a bath at 1:30 am will just wake him up and keep him up forever. After the sponge bath, you have to dig for warm pajamas since a cold front came through, it is almost freezing outside, and the furnaces wouldn't light the night before. Once you convince the child that the mismatched tractor bottoms are perfectly fine with the dinosaur top, then you have to deal with the bed. Once you remove the 40 stuffed animals and strip the sheet off, you realize that all the sheets are in the washing machine still wet and now very cold because the furnace isn't working. Luckily, you find another old threadbare sheet at the bottom of a drawer but you realize that all the blankies are in the washer too. So you run through the house looking for a blankie and find not one but two in the pile of his brother's unfolded clothes. Then you have to convince the child that the teddy bear quilt is just as good as the blue plaid quilt and that even though he wants to have a monster truck bed, he has to go back to sleep in his crib.

Eventually you will get back to sleep around 3 am. But trust me, next time, it is easier just to put a diaper on the toddler before he goes to bed.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Weekend in Pictures

Old 97's REM concert
I took pictures with my cell phone but I can't download them
Flickr video substitute

Soccer game #1

Soccer game #2

We were way too busy to take pictures but we all had tons of fun, 6 hours of fun. We won a dollar raffle prize. We only put one ticket in the box. Anna drew for the raffle and picked the ticket with John's name. I got to keep the prize.

Birthday party
The present seemed to go over well. Cousin L carried it around with her pens in her purse.

Neighborhood Halloween parade
Two Cleopatras

Post Parade Meltdown
He actually cried, "Mommy, I'm tired of parades!"

He was right

Friday, October 24, 2008

On a roll

Since I had the sewing machine out, I got motivated to finish a long neglected project, J's quilt. It only took me 6 months to bind it. The binding is pretty darn sloppy but I'll take it.


We had another cousin birthday this week and the party is on Sunday. I decided to make something instead of buy more plastic junk. Last year Cousin L got a headband & a little purse. This year she's getting a handmade notebook and colored pencils.

I found this tutorial on how make your own journal. It uses photographs as the covers. Since we didn't have any photographs my 4 year old neice would really appreciate, the kids and I decided to make some. A dressed her Barbies up and we went outside for a photo shoot. The pictures came out cute.

Front cover
Back cover picture

The journal isn't perfect. First of all, I accidentally ordered the pictures with a border. I would skip that next time. I also need a jig for my paper cutter. The paper sizes were all slightly different. Normally that wouldn't bother me, but the cover photographs were slighter shorter than 6" and the pages stick out. I need to work on my technique getting the binding straight and folding the binding cover nicely. It was fun & easy project and I'll probably make some more. I want to get a perforated disk for my paper cutter and make journals with tear out pages. I'm imagining really cute notebooks for grocery & to-do lists.