Monday, May 23, 2011

Our Slimy Friend

Saturday was spent readying the house and yard for summer. Kevin pulled things and raked things and got the kiddos involved.

I stayed inside doing all the crazy cleaning things moms do when the children are otherwise occupied. Precious moments.

I did venture out in the yard once or twice. Once was to see this little guy.

We didn't like each other. He was camera-shy and quite aggressive about it.

I turned into a momma bear cautioning my cubs to keep a safe distance. Actually, a king cobra couldn't have reached them from where I forced them to stand.

Then my hero came with a shovel and a determined look on his face.

After we soundly and simultaneously nixed Schickle's idea involving a live snake and an aquarium, she insisted we bury the thing by a tree so that its decomposing carcass could feed surrounding plant life. Her 3rd grade teacher should be proud.

So now it's in a shallow grave along with my innocence. May it be the first and last slithering visitor to my beloved Creekside.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


We all know the verse, "a friend loveth at all times," but it's so difficult to carve out time for one another. I've been wanting to do SOMETHING that would help us encourage each other, but stay fun and pressure-free.

I've got an idea.

Based loosely on a circle of friends talked about on Paint in my Hair, I'm starting a Friend Day on Fridays. Thus, "Fri(en)day."

Here's the scoop:

  • It's for all the ladies in our Sunday school class (and their children)
  • Childcare will be provided (feel free to pitch in a bit o' $ for the sitters)
  • As long as weather permits, the pool will be open
  • We'll start off with an informal Bible study & prayer
  • We'll lunch together (I'll provide the hot dogs and finger Jell-O. You bring drinks for your kiddos and something to pass)
  • Maybe we'll even throw a fun project in from time to time (spraypaint, anyone?)

Here are the goals:

  • Celebrate friendships
  • Encourage one another
  • Challenge each other spiritually
  • Laugh
  • Eat
  • Pray

Sound good?

Invites are on Facebook. See you there.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

eating by candlelight

We're not really eating by candlelight. That would require too much effort on my part. And I promise there would be hot wax spilled on the kitchen table and eventually, a fire of epic proportions.

That's how we roll. Other people spy lovely taper candles and smile at the beautiful ambiance they cast. Not me. I momentarily get a far-a-way look in my eye as I picture Moose knocking it all over in an attempt to tackle his sippy cup or Schnickle hip-checking the table as she flits to Frank Sinatra. The far-a-way look quickly turns to panic as I quickly set any fire-starters beyond the reach of little mishaps.

But enough about candles and Sinatra. This post is supposed to be about ME!

'Cause I accomplished something! Shocking, I know.

I did this . . .

two of these . . .

and one over the kitchen island that broke as I was finishing it. But we won't talk about that one. Because I might get persnickety. Or ornery. Or both. Here's where it was.

It hung for one brief moment before a spring sprang and sprung my worn-thin patience. It was here awaiting three energy efficient light bulbs. And hopefully the bugger will be hung again someday after I get a new part or light fixture. But I'm still cooling my jets. It's been only four weeks. My jets needed quite a lot of cooling. They needed the same amount of cooling as my bi- and tri-cepts did after hanging it.

But, I digress.

After three months of no lights (or mirrors) in the master bath and eating by the pale light cast from the kitchen spots, it's done. Of course, it took me a while. But this short and stubborn thirty-something single-handedly hung these buggers.

With only 4 or 5 calls to my dad.

And they haven't even fallen down yet!

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Day for Mothers

I wasn't going to write a post about Mother's Day. After all, I've been stranded on the couch since Thursday afternoon - down for the count with some sort of sinus/throat thingamajig.

Kevin has been Mr. Mom all weekend. He dressed them, had fun with them, fed them and tucked them in bed at night. He also planned and helped cook a Mother's Day brunch for 18 people.

So I spent my Mother's Day all alone while Kevin lived out his Super Dad role. Love that man!

This afternoon I finally started feeling slightly alive and invited my mother to come spend the evening at the infirmary with me.

It's been a long time since we've spent time with just the two of us. It was fun.

We played some of this . . . 

chatted while sitting here . . . 

took a tour of the gift dad got mom for her special day . . .

and talked about this:

Mom's gone home and Super Dad and I tucked in the babies.

And I'm left with a full heart. Because in the midst of a day of Kleenex and coughing I found sweet moments with my Savior. And sweet moments with my mother. Alone time of any kind is rare around here. Yet, even though my tired body is worn down, my soul is singing.

And so much of it I owe to my mother. Not only because we spoke this evening of the omnipotence of our Creator, but also because she is a key to my spiritual heritage.

She led me to the Lord one night in 1978 in my bedroom.
She showed me Christ in her own life and actions.
She has remained faithful to her Savior and His purposes her entire life.
She faithfully teaches my children about God.

Thanks, mom! I love you.

Friday, May 6, 2011

a friend with a chainsaw

We love our friends. All of them. We have amazing pals in our life.

But today I have a favorite.

This one.  Jooooooosshhh!

He came on Saturday morning. He brought his chainsaw with him.

The chainsaw charmed me . . . and my son.

I asked Kevin if I could get one. Maybe a junior-sized pink one with an automatic push-button start.

I briefly pictured myself trolling through our "woods" in search of downed trees and branches.

I could start a firewood business.

He said no.

Then I asked if he would charm me with his chainsaw skills.

Again, a no.

And since I have no desire to make an emergency room run or preserve a sawn-off digit in milk, I've reluctantly given up my chainsaw dream.

But Josh and his sawdust-producing toy are welcome at my house any time.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Extreme Me!

As a random user of coupons I have a difficult time staying on top of household savings. Recently, after watching "Extreme Couponing," I have embarked upon a savings spree.

Now, let's be real. I neither practice, nor condone, many of the methods and goals of the couponers highlighted on the "Extreme Couponing" show. Just saying, don't expect me to pay $3.75 for $800 of groceries.

But every little bit counts. And when I heard an extreme couponer say, "I will never again spend more than a dollar for a box of cereal," I wanted in!

This is my first week of really researching coupon deals. You all probably already know these websites, but here are the two I like the best so far. (find out how to get a FREE Swiffer Duster on May 10, 2011)

Kevin and I are not interested in housing a grocery store in our basement or garage. Therefore, I've set a few boundaries for myself.

  • shop with a smile
  • teach my children to appreciate a good deal
  • purchase some items without a coupon
  • be organized
  • spend tons of time planning my attack
  • drive long distances to save a dollar
  • purchase items we will not/do not use
  • stockpile a year's supply of anything
  • become obsessed
  • load 6 grocery carts full of shaving gel just because it's free
So, today was my first "coupon trip" to Target. Most of the deals were listed on I was thrilled with the outcome. Even though I bought some big ticket items (2 lg. boxes of diapers and 2 lg. packs of paper towel), my savings was significant. It was worth the gallon of milk that spilled all over the checkout lane.

Bottom line, I got $178 worth of sale/couponed items for $115. I saved $63, plus received $15 in Target giftcards. So, essentially, $178 for $100. Not too shabby! It breaks down to a 44% savings.

I'm certainly not an expert, but wanted to celebrate some savings. Hopefully in the next few months I'll learn to finesse my approach and pick up some good tips.

Happy Coupon Clipping!