Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Who needs a kiss?

Hey, baby. Let's smooch in the van while waiting for your sister to get out of class.

Otay, buh firs I nee hide behind you sung gwasses. Cuz, you embawass me.

You not pos dees on you bwog, do you?
Oh, no, sweetie, I will respect your privacy just as much as you respect mine when I'm in the bathroom and getting dressed.
Good, din gemme noder kiss woman!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Let me see you mop it!

How to make your husband run and grab the camera.
1. Get a mop 
2. Need I say more.

This is my life.  I had just mopped the freakin' floor when in trots Clay, the kids and the dog tracking in mud and salt on my still wet floors.   I stood there, with mop in hand thinking to myself, should I hit them all upside the head with the mop or should I just go clean up the mess?

Clay looked at my stone cold face and said, "What?  What's wrong?"

Gah!  I snarled my lip at him, then stomped over to the muddy tracks and did my little mop jig. 
Ever since this little episode Clay has been pestering me to post the mop dance on my blog.

Because I have no dignity left and you all have come to expect this type of behavior from me, I figure what the heck, right?

Sunday, January 27, 2008

This is for Eugene....I mean You, JEAN!

Here's our puppy, Preacher, minding his own business, chewing on a rawhide.  It's mighty tasty.
And here are my boys, uh, chewing on Preacher.  He's mighty tasty.

Jean, this is for you.
That's Pupanese I'm speaking, in case you've never heard that language before.  You think that's gross?  You should hear me talk to a baby.  It's sick, sad and people are embarrassed for me.

All Astonishment....WINS!

The winner of Chafing Dish Price Challenge 2008 is MrsMama!!  Go check out this woman's photos, they are amazing!!!

This loverly silver chafing dish was purchased for the unbelievable price of $2.50!!

I bought it because I need pretty dishes to serve warm appetizers in for an event I volunteered to 'cater' at our local winery.  The winery is hosting a private evening of wine and appetizers for a party of twelve.  It was one of the offerings at my kids' school auction.  Some wonderful person paid $150.00 for the evening.  

So, MrsMama, I'll email you to see what your hearts desire is in pottery these days and hopefully your answer will be, "Oh, I've always wanted a spittoon!"  

We are finally having so decent weather, so I'm going outside to clean off the porch.  It looked like this a few days ago.....

I'd like to blame that mess on my kids, but it's the dog.  Preacher drags all kinds of stuff out of the barn and from Ramone's house and deposits it on the porch.  He's a bit like having a toddler.

You All Are Killing Me!

****Yah!  We Have A WINNER!!!!****** 

Okay, none of you have guessed the correct amount, but many of you have been sooooo close.  If we were playing a game of hot and cold I would be yelling, "You're burning up!  You're on fire!"

So, since I really want at least one person to win here's some more hints.

1.  It is an even amount that includes dollars and cents.

2.  If you only had quarters, you could pay for it.

3. It was less than $5.

Now, like I say to my kids...think before you answer.  Go back look at the previous entries then put all the clues together.  I know at least one of you brilliant people can do it.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Keep Guessing....or not.

Okay, there still isn't a correct guess on the price of the old chaffing dish.  I'm not P-Dub, so you all can guess until I get a winner....or not, it's up to you, whatever you want, I'm perfectly happy not having to go to the post office to mail a package, or post pictures of my spittoon like pottery.  It's totally up to you all.  The ball is in your court.  Do as you wish.  

Friday, January 25, 2008

Auction News with a Contest if you Choose

Last Saturday I went to an auction in Ottawa, Kansas.
Look at the art deco movie theatre located on the main drag. Cool, huh?
Here's City Hall. It's beautiful. I may have caused a bit of alarm when I reached my camera out the window while I was driving to take this photo. The car next to me slammed on their brakes.....sorry, maybe I need a bumper sticker that says, "CAUTION BLOGGER AT WORK.....FREQUENTLY SNAPS PHOTOS WITH NO WARNING"

Now for the goods.

Basket full of other baskets... $2.50 I'm going to line the basket with linen and use it as a laundry hamper.

Crock....$15.00 I'm a sucker for old crocks. I think it has something to do with my pottery fetish, what a crock.
Sled....$12.50 All farm houses need an old red sled on the porch, don't they? Yes.
Rug......$30.00 This is the item I went to auction in hopes of bringing home. I was not going to lose the bid, and I didn't. Did I pay too much? Maybe, but it has all the right colors and I really liked it, so there.

Chaffing dish......$ ?????

Wanna guess? Should I have my first contest ever? Yes? I, uh, don't have a prize, but um, uh, how would, um, one of my pieces of pottery do? They're not all bad...really. They make great coin holders and pencil cups and jewelry storage and dust magnets and space clutter and, and, and, well that's about it.

So, guess if you want to, but don't feel you have to, it's not a big deal, just do what makes you feel comfortable. Gah, have I ever told you how uncomfortable I am asking for comments? It's the same way I feel about asking people to help me....it makes me feel...bad, icky and in general not good. Yes, I have a problem.

So, if you want to, take a guess, but you don't have to, it won't hurt my feelings, peace and love and rainbows and daisies. The first person to guess correctly wins. I'll post pictures of the pottery that you may choose from, dust out your curio cabinets and make a space for an April original.

Oh, and the dates on the photos saying they were taken in 2005, well, you know, I'm a bit slow when it comes to programming electronics.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Driving Me Nutso Crazy Whack-a-Mole

Sigh....you wanna hear some stuff?

No?  Too bad.

I drove all over freakin' everywhere today.  To school, back home.  

To Vesecky Farms to borrow egg chart and chicken, guinea and turkey eggs for homeschool demonstration.  

By the way, how awesome can a person be when a total stranger calls and says, "Hey, my name is April Weirdo and I saw your egg demonstration this fall during the tour of farms and, well, I was uh, wondering if I could borrow it?"  and then the person, without hesitation, says, "Yes, I'll go dig it out of the storage shed."  That's right they had to dig it out of storage.  They put all the eggs in little labeled sacks aaaand did it all in an hour, cuz that's all I gave them before I went to pick it up.  Then...yes, then when I get to the door, I'm greeted by the sweetest woman ever and another young woman holding a one month old baby, so it's not like they had anything better to do but gather eggs and dig in the storage shed for me.  God of wonders.

driving cont...

To pick up carpool.  To drop son off at play practice.  To drop two kids off at school.  To grocery store to get supplies for homeschool demo.  Back to school to pick up daughter.  To Clay's office to pick up some copies of egg thingy he made for me.  To homeschool co-op  group.  To Clay's office to borrow cash that daughter needs for pizza party with basketball team.  To basketball practice.  To Bread Company to buy three loaves of bread to say  'you are so awesome thank you' to the Vesecky's.  To Vesecky Farm.  To pick up my son at a friends house.  To home-sweet...what is that smell?


Oh, dear, I think that it might be cat pee.  Hard to tell with the lining of my nostrils hanging out of my nose.  But, yes, it has to be cat pee.  Where is it?  

Then begins the sniffing.  Sniffing carpets, sniffing shoes, coats, gloves, trash.  Where is it?  I took out the trash, nope not it.  Crapnutshellfreakgur!  Fine!  I'll just mop the freaking floor!  Fill the sink with water..... oh my freaking wow!    I think it's coming from the sink! The cat peed in the sink.  Usually, she does what any normal person would do and uses the toilet.  I've told you all this before, but in case your new, my cats pee in the toilet.  I had nothing to do with it, it just happened.  But the lids were down on the toilets and when that happens she uses the sink, gross, I know.  She has never used the kitchen sink so, this was new, and my oh my it stunk up the whole house!  

But, now I have clean floors and my cat can live another day and I'm not getting back in my van to drive anyone anywhere for anything...until tomorrow.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Dining Room Before

Looky what I found. Pictures of my dining room before we moved in. These are some of the pictures I took the first time we saw the house.....so that is not my furniture or snazzy lace tablecloth.
All this paper went bye-bye. The room is so much lighter now. Lighter and uh, not painted. Can you see that outlet on the wall, how high it is? Why did they put that there? I'm thinking about taking it out, because I can't think of any reason to keep it there.

Do I need to mention how 'brass-happy' the previous owners were? Yes, I think I do. We have brass everything; light fixtures, outlets, door knobs, faucets, towel bars....ick. I don't particularly care for the shiny brass look. I'm also baffled by the two light fixtures in the dining room. They drive Clay crazy because they're not centered and there's two of them...why? So, we've been looking for a new or old chandelier to put in there. Of course it will mean removing the old ones, leaving two gaping holes to patch and making a new hole and pulling wire. Projects, we love them.
Here's the scratch-n-sniff paper. Mmmm cherries, peaches, apples. This is the best photo I could find, it's also from our first visit to the house. We want to take down the wallpaper and get rid of that strange diamond pattered tile. This project won't happen for quite a while....or ever.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Wallpaper, how I loathe thee.

In response to my last post Country Folk asked me this question;
We're considering buying a home with wallpaper we don't like. The home is perfect but for the wallpaper. Which is in every room. All three bedrooms, the parlor, the living room, and the dining room. How much of a pain is it to remove it?

My answer is;

Well, it's kind of a pain. Especially when you are a project starter and not a project finisher. I am a project starter. I would do well on a demolition crew because I like to tear things down and then leave. Thank you for having me, it was fun to make a huge mess, see ya.

Then the trouble begins. I get tired of the project, very tired and bored and isn't there something better I should be doing like eating? I start to whine and cry and get mopey and pretend like I don't know what I'm doing and complain and sigh a whole bunch until Clay asks, "Is there something I can do to help?" That's when I point to the project that I started and say, "Look what you made me do!" Then he looks at me and decides which approach will cause him the least amount of grief.

1. Hire someone to finish it. But, then he will have to shell out money and that would cause his wife to feel guilty and he would make her feel guilty and so that's no good.

2. Offer to finish the project. This is ultimately the best decision and most of the time reinvigorates his wife to participate in helping him, but also causes his wife to critique his every move, therefore; beginning the battle of Who's Technique Is Correct. Which means words like; doofus, idiot, dork wad, beef brain, nimrod, moron, butt, pain, git and retard will be used in describing the other person, quite possibly for the next several days. So this is not the best choice if we want to remain good examples of decent human beings in front of our children.

3. Ignore the whole thing. This is the approach we have taken with many of our home improvement projects. We pretend that the project never happened, never started, we can't see it and we don't talk about it. La la la la. Happy happy joy joy. Then someone, like my sister or mother or even better, one of my kids' friends, will walk in our home and say, "Oh! Are you refinishing the walls?" Then the veil is torn and we can't breath, we feel exposed, dirty and ashamed. Oh dear, oh dear what have we done? So, we quickly gather up the tools that have been heaped in the corner for the last four months and miraculously finish the project in twenty minutes. Then we look around and say stupid things like, "Wow! That wasn't so bad, maybe we should renovate the kitchen? It shouldn't take us more than a weekend."

Okay, I realize that didn't answer your question. So, here's the nuts and bolts of it. I really think it depends on the wallpaper, paste and what type of surface the paper was adhered to.

I've torn wallpaper off of walls in two of my houses. Some came off like it was never put on in the first place and some came off in tiny shreds that made me want to scream. The paper I'm working on now is a combination of both situations. The top layer, the decorative part, came off in big sheets, but all the adhesive backing remained. That's what I'm scraping off the walls.

I've used everything; DIF, a rotary tiger-shark tooth- thingy, soapy water, and hot water. Right now I think hot water is doing the best job. I put hot-hot-hot water in a spray bottle, spritz the wall until the paper is completely saturated, wait a couple minutes and then scrape. I'll still need to go back and scrub some of the adhesive residue off the walls before I paint and we are hiring a guy to come patch the walls where the termites had a feast.

Now, with that said, my Mom has painted right over here wallpaper and it looks good. She suggested this over and over to me, but like any belligerent child I did exactly the opposite.

My kitchen is wallpapered with cherries, apples and peaches. I was just getting to the point where I thought I could live with it when one of my nephews walked up to the wall gave it a scratch and said, "Is this scratch and sniff wallpaper? Mmm, I wish we had scratch and sniff wallpaper." I think he actually thought he was smelling cherries coming out of the vinyl or he's just dumb, hard to tell with Rechelle's kids sometimes....oooh, did I say that out loud?

Do I think taking off the wallpaper is worth the trouble? Absolutely. I love a smooth wall.

Will I ever use wallpaper? No. I wallpapered our first house and loved the pattern for about three days, then had to live with it for three years. I fear wallpaper is too trendy for me. It looks so beautiful,timeless, classy and then after you wake up it looks like a dude wearing a mullet. It's much easier and cheaper to repaint over the 90's jewel tones and the 80's mauve than to scrape off paper.

Or, you could do what my college friend Katie's grandma does and put another layer of paper up every winter because you think it helps insulate the house. No matter that her once 2000 square foot home has slowly diminished to a cozy, but warm 900 square feet.

That's my answer. Maybe sometime before I die I'll post before-during-after pictures of the dining room. Hahahahah, oh, hahahaha, I just said that like I was going to run down and finish scraping the paper off. That's rich.

Friday, January 18, 2008

This That Those and These


The new camera plug cordy thingy is nice, but when I plug it into my computer it puts all my photos in some weird Adobe thing and I can't figure out how to get them from there to my pictures folder.....sigh, I hate learning new computer crap.

Updates on my hoping for this year;

-I started my pottery class.  The studio is huge, awesome and freaky clean.  It's at the local arts center.  My teacher, Jessica, is a young kid that likes to eat sushi.  She taught me how to make a plate because I want to make a bunch of pretty platters for appetizers.  

-I'm 85% done with scraping the wallpaper off the dining room walls.  But, it ain't done til it's done!

-My parents are showing their house this weekend (fingers crossed very tightly).  Please sell, please sell, please sell.

-I'm reading Betty MacDonald...still.  And I have to start reading a book about St. Augustine for my Sunday school class, but I haven't bought it yet.  My teacher, who's the chaplain at KU and K-State specifically instructed us not to put off our readings until early Sunday morning and I'm pretty sure he was looking right at me when he said that.

And that's it.  I'm still not exercising and have no immediate plans to cause myself any pain or discomfort.  It's too cold to talk about the garden or new critters.

I'm going to try to attend an auction in a little town south of me and they have a great little feed store that carries poultry year round, so, maybe, I'll stop by there and check out there selection.  Mostly because I need something to show-and-tell on Tuesday.  I take my kids to a homeschool co-op every Tuesday and this month one of the classes is about birds.  I was volunteered to help teach this month so I figure, bring little birds...done.  This week I took in a nest and in every class there was at least one little kid that could not say nests, instead it came out nestus.  It took all my will power not to imitate them.

Which reminds me.

Why do my kids put uh on the end of all there words when they are whining?

I'm late-uh.  
Mom-uh,  I'm gonna be late-uh!

It makes me want to reach in there mouths and pull out there eplongataloid and shove it up their nose-uh!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Tough Old Bird

A couple conversations my husband was involved with yesterday, are blog worthy.  

Clay's boss, let's name him, Percival Knightly. is in his later 60's and walked around yesterday complaining of chest pains and a cold left arm.  Uh, heart attack maybe?  Go to the hospital maybe?  Call 911, anyone?  No, Percival, we'll call him Percy from now on, is a tough old bird and he wanted to go to a meeting with Clay and one other guy later in the afternoon.

Clay suggested a few times to Percy to sit the meeting out, he could do the presentation without him and here's an idea....go to the doctor.  But, Percy wanted to help  and said he was fine, so off they three of them went.  In the car ride to the meeting:

Other Guy- Percy have you had any tests run?

Percy- Yeah, I had an endoscopy.

Other Guy- But, what about the test that they stick the probe down your throat?

Percy- Yeah, that's the endoscopy.

Other Guy- Well, if that's the endoscopy what's the test that, you know, goes in the other end?

Percy- That's a colonoscopy.

Other Guy- Oh, I thought that was called an endoscopy, cuz you know it starts with end.

Percy- You should have been a doctor.

Before they went in the room to make their presentation Percy told Clay, "Listen, if I have to slip out (to die of a heart attack) just go on without me."

The presentation went fine and Clay offered to drive back to the office (because he wants to live and not die in a car wreck caused by his boss having a massive coronary embolism), but Percy insisted he was fine.

As they arrived in town a car in front of them veered too close to the median and then jerked over to get into the correct lane:

Percy- Gawd, did you see that car?  I bet it's a woman driver.  I'm going to catch up and see.  You guys look, I bet it's a woman.

As he sped up Clay looks at the driver and says from the back seat, "It's a Duuude."  Which causes Percy to start laughing.

Percy- Oh, did you hear Clay?  He said dude.  Oh, gawd, Clay, don't make me laugh it hurts my chest.

So, Percy clenching his chest, trying not to laugh at my doofus husband finally admits that he's going to call his doctor when he gets back to the office.  Gee, that's a great idea Percy.

Monday, January 14, 2008

You urt my ed!

Earlier today as I was reaching down to pick up Levi's shoes in the mudroom he, unbeknown to me, wedge himself between my leg and the wall. When I straightened back up I squeezed his head between me and the wall like it was a in a vice.

Ow! You urt my ed, Mom, you urt my ed!
Sorry, sweetie let me kiss your head.
Don urt my ed gain, kay?
Okay, I'm sorry, I won't urt your ed again.

Later, today, while loading the van with crapola from Walfart I reached to get Levi out of the cart. Instead of letting me pick him up, he tried to jump into my arms, but ended up ramming his hard head right under my chin. Of course I had my mouth open, because it usually is, and the force of his head made me bite my lip and take a chunk out of my cheek. I was distracted for a millisecond by the haze of blue and purple glitter that I was seeing. Then I reach up held my mouth and closed my eyes.

Oh, gah. Ow!
Sorry, sorry, Mom, sorry, sorry, I sorry.
I know, jussss, jusss, oh, ow, don jumph gain, kay? Don jumph!
Kay, kay, I not jump. Sorry, sorry I urt yur ead.

So, picking him up I walked to his side of the van and wouldn't you know I whacked his head on the door!

Ow! You urt my ed!
Oh, gah! Sorry Levi.
Das okay, I'm okay. It dodn't urt. It's okay. See? I rub it, it's okay.

I swear I did not ram his head on purpose, really. But, I am keeping my distance from him for the rest of the night, just in case he feels like head butting me to even the score.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Crate and Barrel, we need to talk.

Hey Crate and Barrel,

Come on in, shut the door behind you, we need to talk.  

What's happening to you?  

Remember when I used to get your little catalog in the mail and store it in the bathroom so I would have something lovely to look at while I was, um..uh..well, you know, pppppossibly bored?

Well, the last couple catalogs you sent out, were not worth wiping my bbbbathroom sink.  You see, I'm an adult, a grown woman with a teensy weensy bit of design knowledge.  Yes, I know I still have my childish attributes, I am foolish and tactless, sometimes I pick out stupid things that don't match or look ridiculous and well, that doesn't matter right now, what I'm getting at is you have a problem, not me.

Let's get right to the point.  You're bedding looks like it belongs in a college dorm room, in Hong Kong.  When I go to Hong Kong and visit a college I would like to see those duvet covers on a twin sized bed with bamboo flooring and rice paper doors.  Really.  But I don't live in Hong Kong and you don't live in Hong Kong, so how about you try marketing bedding for us Midwesterners?  Or, more specifically, tall, Kansas woman looking for the perfect duvet for her tiny farmhouse bedroom?  Hmmm?  It should be soft, delicate, but say whimsical.  Color choices should lend from barn red, sky blue, brown bark, limestone yellow.  Does that help?

Good.  Oh, don't go yet we still need to talk about the ottoman.  Yes, you heard me, the ottoman.

Who are you marketing to?   Come on now.   I know you want to keep it real, fun, lively, metro.  Whatever.  I'm letting you get away with not having any rugs that I like, remember when you used to carry pretty rugs?  Those were good times.  I loved looking at those yummy braided rugs in rich fall colors while I was pppputing my thoughts into perspective.  Oh, those were the days.  

Listen CB, can I call you CB?  We're friends right?  So, take my advice, keep your cuteness.  I know you love your martini, club hopping and high heels.  But, don't change everything that has made you the wonderfulness that you are.  

Now, here, blow your nose, call your designers and do what you do best.  Cuteness.  And call me anytime, I'm here for you.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Bridge

Last night Clay and I went out to eat and then decided to go to a movie, but we had an hour to waste, so I said, "Hey, drive through campus."  

The students haven't returned from break yet, so the campus  buildings were mostly dark and desolate.  As we drove by the architecture building, Marvin Hall, and the art and design building, more commonly known as the A&D building I said, "Hey, think it's open?  Let's go look around."

Sure enough, Marvin Hall was open.  It's always open.  I don't remember a time that I wasn't able to get into that building and I entered it at all kinds of unspeakable hours.

Clay and I roamed the dark halls of Marvin Hall, then we crossed over the bridge, which is called The Bridge because it links Marvin Hall to A&D and houses the computer labs.  We peaked in the lab and saw one weary looking student working at a computer.  "Man, how many hours did I spend in that room?"  Clay said in a whisper.  

I looked at the ledge that runs under the windows along the wall where I'd spent hours sitting and studying.  I looked out the darkly tinted windows on the bridge, but only saw our reflections.  There we were the two of us standing in the bridge.  The architectural element that connects two buildings, links together two creative and artistic training centers.  The bridge that brought us together.  It's the place we would meet to eat lunch, read the paper, take a nap or cross over to visit the other in their studio.

We walked across the bridge and into the A&D building.  I walked by my old studios.  The familiar smells of wood, foam, paint, glue, charcoal and paper lingered in the air from the projects that were probably locked away in dorms and apartments or frustratingly tossed in a dumpster.  All the caustic chemicals I used to inhale while building a model, it was so long ago.

I saw the name of one of my favorite professors on a door.  I thought he was so amazing.  He taught me how to think about design more thoughtfully, how to think through a process, to make something with care.  His words mesmerized me.  I was shy and intimidated around him.  During the time I was in his class I got so stressed out about the model I was building that I threw it across the shop and it splintered into a thousand pieces.  Guess who came in the door right as I was throwing my fit?  Not the professor, but Clay.  He helped me clean up the mess and glue all the stupid little pieces of balsa wood back together.  That model was chosen by my professor to be placed in the presentation cases to be viewed by all the A&D students.
The next year I didn't have the same professor, but his office was across from the shop that I practically lived in to build all my projects, so I saw him quite a bit and talked to him on occasion.  During that year I had a terrible bike accident while I was riding home from Clay's dorm.  I basically removed all the skin from the left side of my face, shoulder and thigh.  I looked like I'd been beaten.  I couldn't stay home from school, because I had a project due, so as usual I was down in the shop, building whatever design project I was working on at the time.  The shop was crowded with busy students and I was trying not to attract attention to my disfigured face, but it was pretty impossible.  I was sore, tired and wanted to go home and hide. I looked up from my project and saw Clay at the door.  We walked out in the hall and shut the door to mute the noises of students, saws, drills and sanders.  Clay gently wrapped his arms around my sore body, kissed the top of my head and asked how I was doing.  Still wrapped in Clay's embrace I heard the door behind us open, it was my old professor coming out of his office.  He had seen me earlier and knew I had been in an accident. He looked at us and said in the sweetest voice, "Oh, that'll make it feel better." then he walked through the door to the shop.

So many memories were flooding my mind.  We continued to walk down to the sculpture and ceramics studio.  Clay had taken a ceramics class the summer after graduation to fulfill one last art credit that he needed.  I remember carrying our baby girl into that studio to watch him finish some assignment he had.  

I looked at the plaster mixing area and was reminded of the hours I spent mixing plaster for a "love seat" that I made when Clay and I were engaged.  I spent days applying tile to it.  It was so heavy I had to build it on a cart so I could move it around while I was working on it.  It took four men to move it.  A few years later, we took a baseball bat and broke it to bits so we wouldn't have to move it again.

How different my life would have been if I wouldn't have change my major second semester of my freshman year.  How different Clay's life would have been if he would have sent his application in on time and not had to come to school a semester late causing him to fill his studio hours with Drawing One where, "I saw a leggy blond walk in late, stick her butt out to sit on the bench and yowsa, I knew then I was going to make her mine." 
Walking through those halls with my husband I had no regrets, no yearnings to be back in that place.  We walked back towards the bridge holding hands.  So much has changed over the last nineteen years.  I would never have guessed this would be our life.  The two young struggling people that sat on that bridge talking about their future nineteen years earlier had no idea they would be walking over that bridge the parents of four children, him a successful architect, her a stay at home mom.  I caught our reflection in the windows again as we passed by, those two people they're not much different, older, wiser, fatter, calmer but who would have guessed, more in love.  

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Winter, please go away.

The house looks cold and grey.
The lane looks bleak.
The fort and tire swing are frozen in time waiting for the warmth of a child's hand.
The barn has furry icicle bangs hanging down it's face.
The hanging basket stand made from old rebar and electrical tape is exposed and wishing to hide it's primitiveness with belching bunches of flowers.

Who's ready for spring? Who's tired of being cold?

My winter hibernation has begun. I hate it. I don't want to go to bed at night and I can't get out of bed in the morning. I don't want to do anything except eat, drink hot liquids and sleep.
So, what did I do to get my engine running?

Enrolled in a pottery class. It starts next Monday-Monday-MONDAY! The classes I took last summer where I learned the basics were so much fun and I felt so good after an evening of playing with Clay, er, I mean clay. Problem is, although I came home with a lifted spirit and was able to draw out some creative energy, I also brought home a lot of spittoon-like things that my husband uses as loose change holders.

This class I'll learn how to make specific pieces. Serving dishes to be precise. I'm going to make a bunch of serving dishes, to serve things on and in and to. I need a few serving dishes, so this is good. Let's say serving dishes a few more times.

Also, I picked up a couple good books at the local library. Have you read any Betty MacDonald books? I loved The Egg and I. Now, I'm reading Onions in the Stew. It's about her rugged, yet charming, rural life on an island in Puget Sound. I also checked out a couple of her children's books to read aloud to my kids.

The second book I picked up is The American Homeplace by Donald McCaig. It's about how the author and his wife moved to an abandoned farm and learned how to farm and eventually how to live completely off the bounty of their land.

Why do I read books like these?

Because they help get me charged up for my upcoming tasks; building a garden, caring for our tiny orchard, building a chicken coop, fencing an area for a cow and lets not forget canning and 'putting up' the harvest.

We didn't buy a house in the country just to look out at the beautiful land and grow a lot of green grass. We wanted to be out here to get our hands dirty, partake in the wonders of nature, delight in the satisfaction of producing a plateful of food and watch our children grow up in the great outdoors.

But, that's mighty hard to do in the winter. Especially, since this is our first winter and we didn't move here in time to get a compost bin started which can be a nice outdoor distraction when everything lies dormant. I'm anxious for warm weather. I want to smell dirt, use my shovel, pull weeds, feel the ache in my back and sweat.

Hopefully, my yearning to be outside can be quieted by making pottery and reading farm books.

Monday, January 07, 2008

I don't think he's in Kansas yet, Toto.

I have answered the following question for my 6yo at least 37 times in the past 24 hours.

"Mom, what is that thing that's like a whirlpool, but it's not a whirlpool, it's big and round, in the air....what is it again?"


For God's sake boy, we live in Kansas, you might need to remember that little fact.

Friday, January 04, 2008

That's My Honey

Levi likes to work his way onto my chair and stand behind me while I "work" at the computer. If I don't move for him he'll push at my butt and say, "Mom, scuse me, Mom, scuse me, MOM move you bottum, pweeeese, scuse me!" Of course I move just to get him to shut up and then he stands behind me and jabbers only pausing to swallow.

If I'm looking at photos of our family he'll call out names, "That's my Isaac! That's my daddy!" But my favorite is, "That's my Honey!" But, I don't know who this Honey is and he's not telling me. I'll point to a picture of me and say, "Is this your Honey?" But, no I'm not his Honey, nor are his siblings or his Dad.
This morning when he crawled into bed with me I snuggled up with him and said, "Hi Baby." And he immediately solved the mystery by correcting me, "I not Baby, I Honey."

And speaking of Honey. My Honey toasted two pieces of bread, got out the honey and dripped it all over the floor, then made himself a samrich. He's 3! He knows how to make a sandwich.....and a HUGE MESS! I'm so proud.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Dancing Dorkwads

If you don't mind just tilting your head a bit...

I don't know why we do the things we do.  Ever since I can remember, Clay and I have performed little dance moves that we find humorous and blurt out, "Hey!  Try this." Then the other person says, "You're stupid" and stands still for about four seconds before the urge to try the stupid dance move takes over and  it's So, You Think You Can Dance....gone wrong. 

This move I created, but couldn't do it for the life of me.  You have to swish your arms and legs in the same direction as fast as you can and then change you arms to go opposite without stopping your feet.  Understand?  No?  That's okay, my brain couldn't make my arms go opposite without my feet stopping.


You're all trying it right now, aren't you?  You know you want to.  

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


For those of you who've been wondering about the puppy.....
he's still here. 
Oh, and look at the back porch.  Better known as "The Stairs of Death!"  I beg people as they come in and leave, "PLEASE, for the love of all things good do not slip and bludgeon yourself to death on our weirdly swooped concrete stoop!  Please!"
But, if you do.  Don't worry.  We have a Preacher on the premises to pray over your bloody carcass....... he might even bury you in the back yard.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Murray did ja know?

So, we're back up and running again, thanks to my incessant complaining and a teensy weensy bit of whining and let's not forget the public humiliation that I am capable of producing with just a quick little tap on the keys of my computer.

Let's go back a bit and recap what you've missed around here.  Like, the boys singing the beloved Mary Did You Know song.