Sunday, July 30, 2006

V is for Victory and Vacation

Thank God for his small and mighty servants. So far we have gone to Happy Joes Pizza Parlor (oooooh), Hannephins, which is a local grease trap but full of history, for breakfast (ahhhh), Purina Farms (ooooh) and today we are going to Grafton Illinois for a couple days to enjoy more scorching heat and some water sports. I know your asking how do we do it? How do we come up with these unique and adventurous ideas.....someday I'll share all my wisdom with you

Friday, July 28, 2006

Dream Kitchen

This morning I woke up thinking about kitchens. I think a good cook can function in any kitchen. Having the right tools helps, but I think if you've got the skills, then you could make a casserole on an open flame in the pouring rain.

Okay so here is what I want to know:

What kitchen configuration works for you? Not what your living with, but what you perceive to be the best kitchen ever!

The U- I have this now, it does not work, too many tight corners for me. Not enough room for another person to help. However the tight triangle between the sink, stove and fridge is nice.

The L- I like this one, but sometimes the triangle gets too big and I really don't like corner cabinets or wasted space w/ lazy susans.

The Galley- I like this one too, but again sometimes it can feel like your a ball bearing in a pinball machine, I like that it can be the connecting point at both ends to two rooms and no corner cabinets, but it doesn't lend room for an island of any sort.

Those are the styles I'm most familiar with, am I missing one?

Now how do you like your triangle?
Where do you put the fridge in relation to the pantry?
Is your dishwasher on the right or left of you sink?
Island with stove, sink, or nothing? Or no island.
Gas or electric stove? (let's see who the real cooks are, heh, heh)
Wood, ceramic or other on the floor?

Let's hear it. I know I'm not the only person with strong opinions in the kitchen.

The V word

We were going to go to Iowa, but I didn't want to sit in the car that long.

We were going to go to Mark Twain Lake, but camping is not an option.

Our vacation this year, like we really ever take an annual vacation, (drum roll please) is going to be in St. Louis!

We've decided to try to do all the things we haven't done with the kids and some that we just love to do but Daddy is usually at work when we do them. I know we are just a wild, adventurous family. Who could possibly come up with these exciting ideas?

One stipulation: We have to actually do the vacation, No excuses, get out the door, have fun, no chores, no complaining, just relax (that's what I keep telling myself). I'll let you know how it goes.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Filthy Dirty!

Because Sometimes I need an Adverb

Clay makes fun of a couple sayings I have:
"Filthy Dirty" and "Freezing Cold"
because most things are not just dirty and I'm never just cold. I'm thinking this blog is looking filthy dirty, and needs some cleaning. I've got pictures in my sidebar that don't exist and links that go to an error, what the gall bladder is it all for? Gall bladder is going to be my new complaint or lack for luster words, like it? Try it. What the gall bladder are you talking about?! Get the gall bladder out of my way! Gall bladder kids knock it off! Puh, I'm just a simple minded person, gall bladder.

Breakfast Chatter

Ike- I wish we had a swimming pool. I wish everybody had one.

Me- Well, if everybody had a pool then there wouldn't be anything special about getting to swim. So if you asked a friend to come over to swim they would say, Nah I got a pool, and that wouldn't be much fun now would it?

Ike- Well, our pool would be more fun if it could sing.

Me- Yes a singing pool would be fun.

Seth- (in his best opera voice) Come swim in me, come swim in meee, I'm the fun singing pool, come swim in meeeeeeee.

I've said it before, I don't deserve a cell phone.

Levi snagged my phone out of my purse and was wacking it on the ground in the store, but it was keeping him in one spot and occupied. I made the best parenting decision to let him enjoy his little destructo moment and then I walked out of the store without the gall bladder phone! Clay is picking it up on his way home.

Social Graces

I bought this book- Social Graces- Manners, conversation, and Charm for Today by Ann Platz & Susan Wales
it says things like this:

It was easier to do a friendly thing than it was to stay and be thanked for it.- Louisa May Alcott, Little Women

It is wise to apply the oil of refined politeness to the mechanism of friendship- Colette

Much of good manners is about knowing when to pretend that what's happening isn't happening- Mrs. Falk Feeley

The last one cracks me up because how many times have I ignored the speck of food lodged in a tooth or the booger in a nose or the crumb on a chin or the running massacre or the slip of flatulence.....I'm speaking of these things happening to me, not me observing them, I'm not so sure that it's polite for people to let me walk about unaware of my filthy dirtiness. Oh, how difficult it is to tell someone that they have a white head the size of a lima bean forming by their nostril, no that's not good manners let's just ignore the elephant in the room.

Now for the Plug

My new post is up at Larger Families. This week we're writing on pregnancy, birth, miscarriage ect... I wrote a bit on my miscarriage. I have what seems like a book in the works to post on it here, maybe.

Monday, July 24, 2006

I like that idea!

I like the idea of..

Camping, but I don't want to sleep in a tent or be away from air conditioning, running water and a kitchen.

Baseball, but I don't want to sit through an entire game or pretend that I'm interested in the game at all. This goes for basketball, soccer and any other game involving a sphere.

Exercising, but I don't want to get hot, sweaty or feel any pain.

Rising with the sun, but I really want to sleep in and enjoy the peaceful serenity of those couple of hours after Clay leaves for work that the bed is mine allllll mine.

Family vacation, but I don't want to go anywhere that causes me to be trapped in the car for more than four or five hours so that beach vacation would be a bit like using a hole punch to pierce my eyelids and cleanse the wounds with vinegar.

So what big idea do you like, but not really?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I know you're out there

chirp chirp chirp That's the crickets or locusts or grasshoppers; whatever the bug that makes a darn lot of noise at night these days. It is just waaaaay to quiet around here, I mean the house not the blog, I have a stat counter you know, I can see you, well not you, but I see you. So thanks for looking now start to talking, especially this week people geesh, I obviously do not have enough people over three feet tall to yell, I mean, talk to.

Well, I'm headed west again partner. Just Levi and me. So let's all bow our heads and say a corporate prayer shall we?

Dear Heavenly Father,
I know we've been down this road before, in fact it was just two weeks ago, but leaving my children to be raised by puppets at a fine arts camp would be an experiment I don't think I should participate in. So I better go fetch them.

Please God, let Levi sleep for at least half the ride so his misery will only last three hours.

God please let Eastern Missouri and Eastern Kansas have enough crackery bagged food items to keep Levi full and happy.

God please help me not to pull my bicep, tricep, neck or pec muscles while stretching back to feed, wipe, soothe, fetch, swat or whatever for my darling baby.

God please let my van act like she is less than a decade old and we are just on a few errands about town, yes that's what I'll tell her. Oh, sorry Father that is a bit of a fib, but you know how she needs to be gently persuaded ever since I made her go down the driveway in the snow and launch herself into the creek like she was the Duke's General Lee. Remember, I cried your name and not 'Yeee Haw' so she knew I wasn't playing around. I told her I thought she'd like to meet the guys at the shop; they give a nice undercarriage tuck. She just hasn't been the same since. Have mercy on her Father.

God please help me to remember to plug in my cellphone and turn it on. You know how low I scored on the Nerd Test and thus you know my knowledge of electronic devices and my motivation to want knowledge about said devices. I need you to pass wisdom of wireless proportions to me.

God please let there be real cream for my coffee at every truck stop.

God please let Levi hold off on his human excrement until we arrive.

What's that you say God? I should consider just harnessing his car seat to the luggage rack?

Thank you Father for hearing my prayer.


Tuesday, July 18, 2006

or dumb

I'm probably cool is what this test said. I'm thinking I'm just not very smart. No blonde jokes, and I mean it, anybody want a peanut? You know, that I can quote Princess Bride should count a lot towards my nerdiness.

I am nerdier than 9% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!

Me, Myself and Levi

Having one child in the house means I am the playmate. I give kudos to all you parents with one child because having siblings means you can take a shower and poop without someone watching, most of the time.

Without the older three around I’m bored and unmotivated. So I’ll just share some of my blog thoughts:

-I would never complain about laundry if I only had one child. Yesterday, I tried to do laundry because it’s my automatic response to put a load in every time I walk by the washer. I searched for a load and behold, there was none. Finally, I decided to dig out all the boys ‘stained beyond belief’ shirts and see if they had a second life in them. Ta-dum! Some of them have been resurrected into a shirt that can be viewed in public. Okay, so I would not have as many stained clothing items in my life if I only had one child.

­-However, I was thinking about renaming my blog The Woman with A Stained Shirt because I do believe 85% of my shirts do have a permanent stain.

-Speaking of 85%....Uh, men out there avert your eyes. I’m going to talk about bras, okay you’ve been warned. I actually was able to watch Oprah, the entire show, which is something I never get to do. I was informed that 85% of women are wearing the wrong size bra!! Well, surely not me? Most of the women were wearing too large of a size and too small a cup. Again, surely not me? For I am the woman whom the cup runneth dry. I dug out my handy dandy tape measure and behold, God is good! I am wearing the wrong size. So this could explain why I am constantly replacing my strap back upon my shoulder. This is a dilemma that must be rectified, immediately. Just as soon as the Mall and I are on speaking terms again.

-A dilemma I do have. I see that there is a sweet little building for lease in my downtown and wouldn’t a health food store be great in that location? I need your thoughts dear readers. How many of you delight in bulk whole grains, spices, nuts, dried fruits etc? Do you shop at health food stores? Would you love to buy local produce and farm fresh eggs? How about dried herbs or fresh herbs and flowers? Just thinking that I could run a little mercantile, someday. I was born in the wrong century.

Monday, July 17, 2006


Friday night was the McGraw Hill concert. Eeeeeeeeh! I think I acted like I was 17! And that just happens to be the age I was when I went to my last huge concert, Michael Jackson in Denver.

We were on the third row and Tim shook my husband's hand! I then took my husband's hand and said, "We must preserve this! I'll make an appointment to have it amputated tomorrow."

Here are my know because I love to give a good critique:

Faith is beautiful and has an awesome voice.
Faith can't dance and should use her guitar more.
Faith wears comfortable clothing on stage.
Faith doesn't really connect with the audience or talk with them very well.
Faith doesn't sweat wearing her gobs of hair down to her waist.
Faith waved at me, or maybe the group of half naked very blond girls behind me.

Tim wears painfully tight jeans.
Tim has more of a stage presence.
Tim is so corny he's cool.
Tim talks to the audience.
Tim sweats a lot.
Tim throws his half drunk water bottles into the crowd.
Tim tipped his hat at me, or maybe the group of half naked very blond girls behind me.

All of the band members are in their 30's or older.
The lead bass player hands out guitar picks.

The stage was set up in a cross with two circles in the middle. Somtimes we couldn't see them because they would be on the opposite side of the stage. There was a small screen to our right that we could watch what was happening on the opposite end of the stage. The band members were on the corners of the cross below the circles so we could always see the bass player and lead guitarist because they were the part of the band on our side, does that make any sense?

I wanted to see the two of them interact more. When they sang their duets they mostly stood at opposite ends of the stage or sat back to back in weird acrylic chairs. They did kiss after one song, ahhh.

It was really loud.
My ears were ringing when I went to bed.

T-shirts cost 35.00
A smal 8x10 photo cost 5.00 (I bought two of those for my kids)

I don't think I would like to be a celebrity. I wouldn't want to travel in a bus with my children and perform on stage everynight until midnight and then get up in the morning on a bus and tell the kids about the next city we're going to. I wouldn't want thousands of people staring at me and then going home to write about watching me on their blog. No that's not the life for me. But, I am so glad they are willing to do it just to entertain me!

And my last bit of information: Chickens are not vegetarians. Just thought you all should know.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

But, I really am a mother...I swear!

First I was paralyzed. When will the instincts just kick in? Surely I’ll know what to do. How will I know its okay not to feel guilty? Can anyone see me, touch me, hear me? No. I’m alone.

For over 24 freaking hours!!!
They're all gone. Their dad took them to Kansas. That’s right, they are in a totally different state. Aaaaand I’m in my house, out in the middle of the woods, where lots of creatures roam around in my garage no less.

I didn’t clean the house.
I didn’t cook.
I didn’t watch a movie.

I did roam around a couple antique shops while sipping a frozen latte that made my stomach hurt, so even though my children weren’t with me I still had to find an emergency bathroom and debate on if I should just go home because being out is inconvenient and laborious.

Then I drove. I drove to a store with lots of breakable things and paint and other cheap stuff. I refused beyond all measure to go to W-Mart so instead I went to K-Mart. Oooh, live on the wild side April! I even pushed a cart around because I felt stupid and naked without one. I didn’t buy one darn thing.

Then I drove. Drove myself crazy trying to come up with something to do! Oh, Borders!! Yessss! I never get to sit and look at books. So I did that for a bit. I read a book on four square gardening that made me want to cry because I’m such a gardening idiot and I so want to be a master gardener. So I bought it in hopes that I will change my ways to four square gardening next year.

I ate dinner by myself at Bread Co. because God forbid that I go somewhere original or even girly. I stared at a family with five kids and I think the mom thought, “Yes, I have 5! I see that you are single with no children! Isn’t that just great for you, you get to sit and eat and read!” I so wanted to lean over and help her clean up the table and say, “I know how you feel, I have so many kids you just wouldn’t believe how many I have. Oh, but they aren’t here, you know cuz I sent them away, to another state, and …..I’ll just go sit over here by myself, sorry, sorry, but really I do have kids!”

Then I drove. I drove until I found paradise. It’s a spot off the road where all the houses have white rail fencing for their horses. The houses aren’t grand but the land is. I wanted to pull over and ask how I could live there. Sigh

Then I drove home. I fiddled doing this and that. Finally I decided to watch SNL. The phone rang. I got the news that I had missed something really big in one of the kid’s lives. But at least the kid called me first, so I could really feel guilty.

Now I think I’m a terrible mother. What the heck am I doing here? Why did I want to be alone? I don’t even know what to do! Stupid me! Now I know I would make a terrible single person. What am I going to do tomorrow? They won’t be home until late. God, please? I’m sorry, I just thought one day alone in the house would be nice. I didn’t know, honestly, I didn’t know I would feel so….so lonely.

Friday, July 14, 2006

I love to shop!

I felt so guilty leaving you at home in the care of your older sibling so I brought you all with me. I just love you all that much.

The first store we went in you decided to make yourself comfortable and get your own dressing room and try on shorts even though I said this trip is about me this time, not you. You even found a shirt that you didn't need for 4.97 and told me that all your other shirts were too tight. You know the ones I bought two weeks ago? Yeah, those are waaaaay to tight oh, and itchy. I love you so much that I waited for you to finish getting dressed instead of leaving you in the store.

On the way to the second store you rubbed your tummy and told me how starved you were. And I was enjoying our time together so much that I didn't trip you or run the stroller into the back of your ankles when you asked why we always had to shop for me.

I giggled at your cuteness when you asked to ride the Merry Go Round 85 times in 5 minutes.

I picked up the goldfish crackers that you were piling on the floor to eat one by one even after the store clerk exclaimed how dirty the floor was...then I handed them to you so you could do it all over again and again. I love those little games.

I am so glad that three of you are potty trained so we can find those bathrooms in the different stores. After all shopping is an expedition; we are in search for the unknown.

I was having so much fun with you that when your father answered my call to come meet us at the mall specifically to take you home I may have shed a tear. I just love shopping with you boys that much!

Yesterday, I slid down a razor blade into a cool bath of alcohol. That is how I feel when I am in search of a new pair of jeans. Did I find a pair? Why yes, and they are still hanging on the rack in the store with the price tag of 128.00...what?!

I spent four hours looking for pants to fit the 50 foot tall shrunken apple head woman. I'm tall and let's use the word bodacious instead of blubbery in the butt and thighs. I like the low waist jeans, but I don't really need the jeans to be so low and tight that my bodaciousness is forming a butt crack up to my shoulder blades...or is that called a coin slot? Yes, a coin slot the size of Texas, oooh pretty!

I'd like to recognize these stores for their exceptional merchandise...

Thank you Eddie Bauer for carrying jeans that are long enough for me and high enough to chaff my armpits.

Thank you GAP for changing the long and lean style that I coveted into the hike the butt flab onto my back style.

Thank you Banana Republic for carrying the one pair of jeans that fit me and charging the cost of a grocery trip for my family, although I did pause and think 'we could eat the chickens...hmmm?'

Thank you Hollister for having a teeeeny tiiiiny sales person that handed me a size 11 that she thought was surely big enough and when I held the pair aloft to show her if barely covered my forearm she laughed and said, "Really? You don't think that will fit?"

The Tall Girl Shop (or whatever it's called) thank you for recognizing tall women. I don't personally know anyone that is 8 feet tall, but you have done a great job making clothes for them.

Anne Taylor Loft, I love you. I will give my children to you if you will start making jeans that fit me. I love your sales people, I love your shirts and skirts and dresses and shoes and pants and the layout of your store...well except you give way to much attention to petites and not tall people, go figure.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Things I pulled out of the dirt....

One little boy that discovered if he tried to touch my khaki pants I would scream and run away from him. He won the chase. Why do I wear white shirts and khaki pants? Why?

Beets and Early Potatoes. Next year....more beets!

My Sons are Super...

The Incredible Hulk

"Mom, I don't think I can wear these anymore" my son said coming inside to show me his not so old jean shorts shredded from the button down to the side seam. He laughed and did the cartoon action of covering his privates and side stepped out of the room.

My response was for him to throw them away and change his clothes. Why didn't I ask in wide eyed amazement how it happened? Because...

This is the same son that ripped holes in the knees of his jeans two days after I bought them.

This is the same son that quietly approached me at the pool with his arms stiffly at his sides and told me we had to go home right now. Thinking he was ill, the sweet dear, I asked him what was wrong? He sheepishly exposed his swimtrunks ripped on both sides from the waist band to the hem....both sides.

Does he turn into some sort of freakishly strong kid when my back is turned?

The Incredible Bulk

Levi eats two breakfasts everyday. Two.
He can't stand to be left out of anything that involves food.
He runs to the kitchen if he hears the pantry door open or any crackling sound that may be a bag of food being opened.
He climbs up in his highchair with great glee and gets upset if you try to take him out before he has eaten everything you have to offer.
He bounces up and down and whimpers when we all sit down at the table and he doesn't have his plate yet.
What makes him happy when he is sad? Not a pacifier, not a bottle, not a blankie. Food.

Should I be concerned?

The Incredible Sulk

"Momma you and me wanna go the beach, but Grandma wouldn't take us!" said Isaac yesterday in the car.

My parents stopped by my house on their way to Florida, ummm something like 5 months ago. Isaac was so disappointed that they wouldn't take us too.

He is not letting that one go.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Let's Change The Subject

A- I gotta an idea! Why don't we use that old kitchen cabinet hanging in the garage for the bathroom? We can paint it and make it look brand new! And it's FREE!!


A-But, we don't have anywhere to put towels and it's the perfect size.

C-We can go buy one.

A-But, this one is free!


A-Why do you always poo-poo my good ideas?

C-Because moving that cabinet is a bad idea not a good one!

One day later at Home Depot

A- Let's look at bathroom cabinets.


A- Look, here's one

C-Yea, that'll do.

A-It's $101.00!

C-Let's use the cabinet in the garage.

A-Oooooh! That's a great idea! (April suppresses mocking behavior all the way to the check out.)

April's Saturday Brilliance

-Sold children's clothing at Once Upon a Child earned-50.93
-Sold one pair of rejected pants to Plato's Closet-3.10
-Spent 74.00 at Old Navy buying shirts for my husband and a pair of unneeded shorts and a shirt for Isaac because he came to the store with his dad in a shirt 3 sizes too small and a pair of broken overalls and we were going out to eat and well, he looked a bit like no one had put any thought into what he looked like....oh, right that's why I had to buy him some new clothes.
-Convinced my husband to help paint and hang the old kitchen cabinet in the bathroom- FREE!

My Busy Schedule This Week!

-Teach my husband that when I say McGraw-Hill it's in reference to country music superstars not book publishers.
- Work on dance moves for the McGraw Hill concert. And a 5,6,7,8....
- Find outfit to wear to McGraw Hill concert (should I be Faith or Tim?)
- Purchase lighters, body glitter and maybe make a few posters that say "I heart Tim and Faith" for McGraw Hill concert. Yeeehaw!
-Teach my husband the words to all McGraw Hill songs especially the duets so we can work on a routine together!! He's doing really well on their new one when Tim has a bit part that goes "I wanna know, I wanna know, I wanna know..." We have a lot of work to do on this.
-Find a white "wife beater" tank top, tight pair of Wranglers and black cowboy hat for Hubby to look like Tim, oooh and a big honkin' belt buckle, ride em' cowboy!
-Suppress my giddy screams, cheerleader jumps and jazz hands in front of the children everytime a McGraw Hill song comes on the radio.

It's going to be a very busy week, how will I ever get everything done?

Saturday, July 08, 2006


I wrote a bit on my frugal ways at Larger Families. It's so much more than what I wrote. If I knew how to link back to my archives I'd put cute little hi-lights to words that you could click back and read some of my living posts, but I don't know how to do that....anyone wan to leave me a brilliant comment on how to do that?

I'm still trying to come to terms with one of the writers saying that a larger family doesn't really cost more. Listen folks, in reality it does and I'll just list a few things here:

College Tuition
Medical Bills
Music Lessons

So, unless your using cloth diapers, rags to wipe a baby butt, have crooked teeth children, all your children are brainiacs and get full ride scholarships, are never sick, never get married, you are musically gifted and teach them every instrument they are interested in playing or you don't allow them to take lessons of any sort and you have kids that don't participate in organized sports (this would be a God send for me) then I would agree that one child costs the same as four or more.

Kids are expensive. But, they are a guaranteed investment for my future. They don't cramp my lifestyle they enhance it. They also have taken away most of my selfish ambitions and taught me to love unconditionally.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

What's on your kitchen floor?

-crushed pecans

-crumbled green play dough

-one of my husbands business cards

-spider man watch

-long strands of blond hair

-foil wrapper


-one large man sized dirty sock with grass attached

-dried sticky spot where someone dropped their piece of watermelon

-large female sized foot prints

-various sizes of small children footprints

-3 very cheap tannish colored rugs for people to wipe their dirty feet on. They are amazingly clean given they aren't used much.

-one damp dish towel to catch the water that leaks from under the fridge

-puddle of water from the fridge because the towel is now by the oven just laying there waiting for the toddler to start swinging it around spraying dirty refrigerator water on all the surfaces of the kitchen

-and the crowning glory, a diamond patterned faux mauve marble and taupe linoleum with a ding, dent, cut, scrape, stain or mark of some sort in every visible spot

Times I swept the floor today: 4
Times I mopped the floor: 1
Wages for fruitless labor: 0

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Mrs. Nesbit's Garden

The lovely Mrs. Nesbit posing for a portrait with one of her flock.

The squinty eyed Nesbits. This variety blooms with five heads.

The youngest variety is sweet and sour, depending on which end you pick.

One of the gardens many beautiful butterflies.

Baby tootsies are especially ripe this time of year.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Do you wanna be my friend?

My new post is up over at Larger Families. This time we are talking about outside relationships aka friends. I actually think it takes an amazing person to be my friend for these reasons:

1. I hate to call people on the phone, hate it. When I do call I have a specific reason and then if we get to chatting that's okay, because I love to talk, I just hate to call.

2. I get a little wiggy when I'm not the person in charge of planning the event, although I've calmed down on this quite a bit. But, hopefully the event being planned will be to my specifications, that's all, no biggie, just want it my way.

3. I don't like changing things when I've got them all lined up the way I like, so if someone calls and says, "Hey, do you want to go to the zoo today, like in an hour?!" That is enough to send me into a tailspin. But, again I'm getting better at this. It may take two days for me to recover from a spontaneous adventure, but I'll do it all in the name of fun for my children.

4. I feel bad when people do or say something nice for me and I always feel in debt to that person. What's that? You don't think I take a compliment well? No, no you look really pretty, this dress I'm wearing is just old and really not very in style and I kinda feel fat in it and well, you look great. Ugh!

5. I'm sarcastic.

Okay, and now after reading those points I'm thinking I need to be on some form of mind altering drugs or does it sound like I already am? Like I said my friends are all very amazing women.