Monday, June 30, 2008

Yes, I'm Alive!

I've been writing. See how my little word meter is crawling? Go me.

Friday Hubby was home and I honestly forgot to blog! I know, not normal. I will be better. Right now I'm about to make lunch. So far, I have a pretty tranquil existence, and a major absence of drama.

For TODAY, anyway! Tomorrow might be a different story...

Thursday, June 26, 2008


SCALP of all places! Right where I part my hair. The one place I didn't think to spray. Those crazy little buggers.
I mowed the lawn yesterday, and they were bouncing off me like mad. I had them in my eyes, behind my sunglasses, under my hat, in my clothes--and yes, it was ten in the morning. We officially have mosquitoes coming out of our ears, here.
My daughter asked me yesterday "Mom, why did God invent mosquitoes?"I said (impishly):

"He didn't. They just...are." She giggled and said "Maybe the Devil invented them, then!" And we had a laugh over it. Well, more like a cry. We really hate mosquitoes.

We were getting attacked right and left at Thing One's softball game last night--and THEN I had to drive across town to pick up Thing Two from Scout camp, and the mosquitoes were so bad they came into the car with us and we spent the entire drive home squishing them against the windows. Blood Suckers. I loathe them.

I think I'm becoming addicted to Diet Cherry Coke again. It is soooo good. I have a big insulated cup in my car--I pour a couple of cans and some ice in there, and the drive is goooood. Yummy.
Oh, and I have a NEW LOVE: I am a Frosted Mini Wheats Fan, and I have shunned the "flavor" options, keeping it all pure and everything, and THEN yesterday at the store I saw "Blueberry Muffin" flavor. Of course I bought some. And of course it's WONDERFUL. I suggest you run out and buy some, immediately. The only hitch it has--unless you wolf it down pretty quickly, the blueberry frosting dissolves off. But it does that normally, so I guess it's expected.
Well, time to dust and mop and vacuum and fold and wipe and scrub and flush! Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

We Live in a Zoo...


*Ahem* Okay. That was exciting.

Hubby had a 9am dentist appointment, so instead of waking up at 5:45, which is his normal time, he woke up at 7:45, and don't worry, we all slept in!! Even the baby didnt' wake up until 6:30. (yeah, I was bad, I let him sit and talk in his crib). It was blissful.

I'm sad though, no baby turkeys (poults!) this morning. I want to get a picture of them--I had my camera ready at the bay windows and everything. The last two mornings they have walked right through our yard, but this morning they are elsewhere. Maybe tomorrow! I'll get a picture yet.

We really do have a lot of wildlife around here. It's sort of like a wildlife preserve--or ZOO, depending on how you look at it. We have squirrels, birds, prairie dogs, deer, rabbits, turkeys, raccoons, and eeek: coyotes. Thanks for the helpful suggestions. I haven't seen any around here, just two miles away. But I will definitely be more cognizant of what goes on in the back yard. And my kids make so much noise normally I would imagine they would stay away.


I had a MAJOR breakthrough with the novel yesterday. I was plotting (I had rough ideas of what I wanted to write but nothing solid) and with a little research, it all clicked and fit together perfectly, like a puzzle being solved. The "click" was almost audible, in my head. It was a definite "AH HAH!" moment. I was thrilled. So now I can go forward and write with confidence, because I know exactly what I'm going to do, and it will make sense. That doesn't usually happen for me. Not that way, anyway.

Lots to do today, mowing the lawn, Tennis, softball, and Thing Two has his first experience with Boy Scout Camp.

Heaven help us all. I will keep the cell phone on me.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rocks In My Dryer...

Thing Three scared the bejeebus out of me yesterday--I washed a pair of his cargo shorts--one pocket of which he'd stuffed an impromptu "rock collection" into--and they held during the wash cycle, but the pocket came open in the dryer, and I honestly thought my dryer was going to hoist itself up on slimy hind legs like out of some horror movie and devour us all. The sound was THAT scary.

Thing Three knows we always "check our pockets" before we throw things in the dirty clothes hamper now. Of course, how much you want to bet he'll forget?

The Turkeys and their babies were out again today. Yesterday we were all in the basement, doing assorted things, and Thing Two noticed there were two big turkeys by our windows. We went upstairs to look, and there were two females, and FIFTEEN little baby turkeys with them. (What do you call them? Turklings?) They were all adorable. I worry, though with all the loose cats in the neighborhood.

This morning they were in our back yard again, same place, and they went into the empty wooded lot next to us. They must be roosting in there. I just hope every day we see them, there are still fifteen babies. I'll be sad if there are any less.

Oh, and SCARY--we were driving off the freeway about two miles from our house on Sunday, and I saw a COYOTE standing by himself in a field.


Thing One and her girlfriend went for a walk a few weeks ago and she called me on her cellphone, screaming that there were coyotes in the empty cornfield right next to our subdivision. I didn't really believe her, because that would be FREAKY. We concluded they were just the farmer's dogs.

Well, after seeing that one coyote so close, I am worried. There probably were coyotes in that cornfield. Right at the edge of our subdivision. I mean, I have a BABY, and small children. Coyotes EAT small children. I am going to talk with the neighbors and see what they think about it. Granted, I would never leave the baby in the back yard by himself, but my smaller-than-average seven year old is out there all the time. Should I worry?


I'm struggling with the name for my protagonist's sister. I settled on Rebekah (a bible name) but let's be honest, there are only a handful of women's names in Biblical canon, and frankly I think they're overused. This person lived in Central America in A.D. 34, so her name could pretty much be anything, but her ancestors migrated from Jerusalem 600 years earlier, so I figured "Rebekah" might work.
I need to get creative. Hmmm....

Time for our morning walk!

Monday, June 23, 2008

My Name is on EVERYTHING.

The Weekend is officially over. No more lounging around. Now, I have several things with my name on them:

--The Overflowing Dirty Clothes Hamper (at least it hasn't reached "Mount Vesuvius" Status yet)

--A sinkful of dirty pots and pans

--A list of "To Do's" as long as my arm

--The Guest Room (which, once again, has become a "catch all")

--FIVE toilets

--A Neglected Manuscript

--A Dusty house

--An Expedition with the words "Wash Me Please" written in the grime of the back window

WELL, I am going to go around with a little sharpie and change my name on some of those things to "Thing One, Thing Two, and Thing Three," because they get to HELP. Except with the manuscript, and the To Dos.

And I'm highly annoyed, because despite my careful efforts, I have MOSQUITO BITES. And don't worry, they're not in inconspicuous places. One of them is RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF MY FOREHEAD!!! Freaking mosquitoes.

I'm a little grumpy today, can you tell?

Sunday, June 22, 2008


I want to give a big, sloppy kiss to the inventor of the DVR. Hubby taped the Olympic Trials while we were at church, and we've been watching them most of the day. GO U.S.A.!!!!!

(Can you tell we're big into the Olympics at our house?)

And Wimbledon starts tomorrow. I am in heaven.

Can I say nothing beats lying around, watching sporting events and eating really tasty/bad-for-you food?

*sigh of contentment*

Friday, June 20, 2008

The BEST Swimming Pool...

I set up the swimming pool yesterday. Every year, I buy one of those Intex Easy-set pools at Target (not the ginormous ones, but the eight-footers) and they are sooooo easy. And they have a filter system, and they're the perfect size for the kids, and the back porch area, because Hubby, being the Anal Man that he is, won't let us have a pool on the grass. He claims it will kill the grass, and be all ugly.

My response? Grass is resilient. It will be OK. But no, I get vetoed every time.

I love the easy-set pools. They're really easy to maintain. And our whole family can fit comfortably in one. Great for cooling off. Now I just need to find all the swimsuits...

I rented FOOL'S GOLD for the weekend. We never saw it in the theatres, so it will be fun. Tonight we're going to grill brats and make smores in the fire pit (I guess I need to go get the permit for that, after a year and a half, right?) and tomorrow will be a fun, relaxing day. No sports, just errands and house stuff. We're going to buy some fans for the bedrooms, to save on our A.C. bill. We have a greatroom that's open to above, and the fan the builders installed only goes one direction. Which is great for winter, but in summer, we need it to go the OPPOSITE direction and push the A.C. down to us, rather than up to the ceiling. Makes sense, right?

And Oh, goody, we get to go to the Mulch Dump. I told Hubby it's his turn. Heh heh.

Reading my friend's play got me in the mood to write some more on my story, so I'll eek out some words this weekend here and there. I have been so busy paying attention to the kids and making sure we all "have fun" I have forgotten to have a little fun myself. (Writing is a reward for me sometimes.) Well, I owe myself! :-)

Have a happy weekend, all!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

I LOVE EBAY. And I'm Dumb.

First off, I LOVE Ebay. Mostly, I love selling stuff. Last night, an item I had listed was ending, and to my glee, there were two bidders having a war with each other in the last five minutes--and in the last THREE SECONDS a sniper swooped in and outbid them both. Ha ha ha ha ha!!!!

You gotta love it. I also love that I can get pretty much anything from my childhood on Ebay. Barbie Perfume Maker? Check. Nintendo NES? Check. Vaulted Disney DVD's? Check.

So, Ebay rocks. But I'm also dumb. Why am I dumb, you ask?

I have a handicapped sense of direction.

I'd like to think I'm at least of greater-than-average intelligence sometimes, and I am a good driver---I just have no "internal GPS system," like some people do. Take for example, LAST NIGHT.

Thing One had a softball game at a field I'd never been to. The coach emailed directions. They were quite simple: "Go on a certain highway, exit a certain exit, look for park signs, and turn left into the park."

Easy, right? Heh heh. Apparently not for someone who's DUMB. I did exactly what he'd said, I followed the directions to the letter. Of course he failed to mention how long I'd have to drive before I "saw the park signs" and I drove about five miles on the road, looking for said park.

When I finally found myself in Dairy Land, with nothing around but cows, I figured I'd gone too far. So I doubled back. I had all the kids in the car with me, and I had them all glued to the windows, looking for park signs the entire way back to the freeway. NOTHING.

I turned around again. By this time, the game had started. I had been driving for half an hour, wasting precious gas and we still hadn't found the FREAKING FIELD!!! To make matters worse, my cell phone was in one of my OTHER handbags, so I couldn't call. (One of the risks of matching your handbags to your shoes, I'm afraid.)

So, I'm embarrassed to admit, I gave up. I said "to heck with this!" (well, that's the edited version anyway) and drove home. And I emailed the coach and told him "I'm sorry, I'm dumb."

Turns out they removed the park signs for road construction, and never put them back. And I was supposed to turn off onto another road to get to the park, so it wasn't visible from the street. THAT was why I couldn't find it.

I still feel dumb.

I also had the funniest thing happen to me yesterday, while I was mowing the lawn. I was chugging along, and this little black bird swooped right in front of the riding mower. It scared me for a second, until he came back, and did it again. There were actually two birds, flying almost flat to the grass, and they were circling me while I was on the lawnmower. And every time they'd circle, they got super close to the front of the mower. Thing One, who was dragging bags of grass to the garage, was amazed too.

They were playing Chicken with the lawnmower! These two little birds! I'd never seen anything like it. They did it for about ten minutes. Flying low to the grass, swooping around and flying RIGHT in front of the path of the lawnmower.

Weird, huh?

Well, excuse me while I go and take my dumb self to the kitchen for some cereal...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


So, while I was blogging yesterday morning about my "Pit of Hell Smell" woes (thanks by the way, for all the comments and suggestions everyone!) Thing One was itching to show me something.

Now, she KNOWS that when Mommy is blogging or writing, there is an invisible "Do Not Disturb Unless The House Is On Fire Or The Baby Is Choking" sign hanging above my head. She knows this. Yet, she kept interrupting the whole ten minutes: "Mom are you done yet? Mom I need to show you this!!!"

I finally hit "publish" and pushed away from the desk and said "Ok- what is it?" And she proceeded to plop a small, thick envelope in front of me.

"That's nice, dear."

"Open it, Mom."

"Is it a note?"

"It's Origami. So-and-so and I are really getting into it."

Thing One was most recently into Sudoku. Now, apparently, it's the Japanese art of paper-folding. So I opened the envelope. It was actually a single piece of paper, folded about 3548293 times in strategic places, to make a self-sealing envelope. I was impressed.
Next, she wanted to SHOW me how she did it. I wasn't really interested, but she was so excited about it, I let her.

Fifteen minutes and about eight pieces of paper later, we had made a bunch of little envelopes. I wanted to make more. It was fun! All I've ever been able to do before was make a drinking cup out of paper (which actually works!) and one of those pincer-things that look like pointy egg-cartons. That's it.

Origami is fun. Who would ever have thunk?

Today should be a busy day. The kids and I will have our morning walk after breakfast (heh heh, I make them RACE!) and then it will be mowing the lawn, tennis lessons, the store to get all the dumb things I forgot to get because I didn't take my list into the store with me, and finally, Thing One's softball game.

Maybe I can get Thing One to make me an origami magic wand? I'd wave it over the laundry, the guest room, the back basement....

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

"BRILLIANT" Idea Number 23...

Sometimes I have these "great" ideas. Sometimes, at the time, I even might think they're "Brilliant..."

And later down the road, I realize (with horror) that they were anything BUT.

Which brings us to "Brilliant" Idea Number 23. A.K.A.: THE MULCH DUMP.

To preface: Hubby and I have a pretty big yard, and when we mow, we bag our grass. (We tried leaving the clippings on the yard a few times and the grass laid there in long clumpy rows and it looked awful). Yet, after a mow, we can have anywhere from six to TEN bags (and I'm talking the huge black lawn and leaf bags, here) of grass.

And we mow twice a week. So what we USED to do, was load all those bags of grass outside with our garbage, stick a $20 in an envelope for their trouble, and pray the garbage guys took it.

So, according to my calculations, we were paying twenty dollars a week, just to have the garbage guys haul our grass away. Then one day I read in a flyer that my town was opening a "Compost Site" which is basically a place you can haul your grass clippings, tree branches, mulch, and any yard waste. For a one-time $15 fee, you can get a sticker and haul unlimited grass to the site, from April to the end of November.

So, $640 vs $15.

It was a no-brainer for me. I went and bought the sticker, and told my kids that they would take turns hauling the bags of grass to the dump with me.

So the first Saturday, I had about twelve bags of grass. I put a tarp down and loaded them in the Expedition, and drove the whole way with the windows down because frankly, decomposing grass isn't that fragrant. We got to the dump, and the guy directed us to this huge mountain of grass, and instructed us to open our bags, dump the grass out, and LEAVE WITH OUR BAGS.

Okay, I hadn't exactly signed up for that. I thought I was going to be unloading my bags into a pile, and driving away. I didn't know I had to tear them open, dump the putrifying grass out into an already putrid WAY STINKY pile, and leave WITH said stinky bags...

But I did it anyway. My kids complained about the smell. They made retching noises and barfing noises and complaints about how they couldn't breathe or they'd barf, etc. etc. I always told them to be quiet and work quickly, and we'd get out of there faster.

Then, YESTERDAY happened. Apparently, the grass pile was getting too "wide" around the base, and they got some bulldozer to scrape it back up into a mountain. Now, when moldy grass and bits of yard waste are rapidly decompising in the hot and wet, how do you think it smells?

When Thing Two and I arrived at the compost pile, we were immediately violently nauseated. I had even parked downwind, (a trick I learned after the first time) but to no avail.

The ground itself was this putrid moldering vile mud that smelled like...pure filthy evil, for want of a better description. I think the Pit Of Hell must smell like this smelled.

Thing Two immediately started crying and retching and telling me he just "couldn't help" and frankly, I was getting very grossed out and sick myself. But we had ten bags of grass that needed to be opened up and dumped, and by golly, we were going to do it. So I told him to breathe through his mouth and it wouldn't be so bad, but honestly, it was.

Somehow we made it through the ten bags (one older gentleman meandered over to see if we were OK because Thing Two was making these loud distressed noises) and we finally got into the car, removed our gloves and hand-sanitizered ourselves to death.

But driving home, the smell was still strong. It was awful. Then I realized: OUR SHOES. They positively reeked!

We left them in the garage and I'll hose them down with Apple-scented Lysol today, in what is probably a vain attempt to rid the Essence Of The Pit of Hell from them.

WHY? Why did I think this was a good idea? At the time, I thought I would "go green" and do my part, but at the expense of my nose?

UGH. I am SO not looking forward to this Saturday...I'm going to have to NOT EAT beforehand, wear shoes I don't care about, and bring a clothespin for my nose.

Still not looking forward to it...

Monday, June 16, 2008

ELUSIVE Fu Panda...

This weekend really kicked my butt. (Heh heh, you like my fitting image?) But seriously, Saturday was just a big mess of yardwork and getting ready for barbeque guests and cleaning. No Kung Fu Panda. My kids are fine, though. They understand sometimes you just get busy. Next weekend will be "Movie Weekend" for us. :-)

But at least Hubby and I got to escape for a few hours at night and FINALLY see INDY.

I loved it. *SPOILERS AHEAD!*

Sure, I thought the "Alien Theme" was a bit strange (and I honestly think it's the reason most people who didn't like the movie didn't like it) and not "typical" Indy, but it was still a fun romp, and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing old characters in play again. Sure, Indy should realistically be in a hospital in a deep coma with a full-body cast after the beatings he got from the communist thug-- and YET AGAIN they found a super cool ancient civilization ONLY TO HAVE IT DESTROYED IN THE END (which makes me crazy!!!) but you just have to roll with it, and enjoy it. I was sad because I felt Cate Blanchett's character was underdeveloped, but hey, this is Indiana Jones, not some deep psychological thriller, you know? She did a fabulous job with the material given her.

I thought the introduction of Mutt was fun, but the "Almost Changing Of The Hat" at the end gave me hope that maybe Harrison will do yet one more film? He's not quite ready to hang up the whip and hat???

A girl can hope!

We're bummed out today--the kids and I planned a walk every morning outside after breakfast, but this morning-- if it's 50 degrees I'd be surprised. And it's WINDY. I'm not taking the baby out in that. He's already got a cold. But Tennis lessons start today, and Thing One has her softball game. We were rained out last week and all her games were cancelled, so hopefully everything has dried up enough to play on.

Time to get the garbage out! Hope everyone had a great weekend.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Bird Poo Facials????

Um, yuck. No, I'm not getting one, I was just scanning MSN headlines today and saw an article on the crazy things people do to help their skin. I'm sorry, having someone (or someTHING) else's FECES on my face isn't going to happen.

Well, we were under Severe Thunderstorm, Flash Flood, and Tornado warnings and watches untill the wee hours in the morning--we just let the kids sleep in the basement. Even the baby. They thought it was fun, we were nervous wrecks. The huge cracks of thunder kept waking us up, but what can you do?

I had to go to court over my speeding ticket this morning, luckily they were nice to me, and I don't get points deducted. The judge thought it was quite amusing that I got pulled over in front of a police station. It wasn't funny at the time, but now, yeah, I guess it could be.

So I'm a little lighter on the wallet, unfortunately, but my insurance won't go up. Thank HEAVEN. Friday the 13th has always been a lucky day for me!

I stopped by the store on my way home to buy about five cans of mosquito repellent (ranging from the "baby" stuff to the hardcore DEEP WOODS-MELT-YOUR-SUNGLASSES Deet-filled stuff.) We are going to have a mosquito epidemic this summer because of all the standing water and flooding, mark my words.

YUCK. I bought a net you can put over a baby stroller, too. They're about $2.50, and I have a feeling it will be worth it.

So now the baby is down, and I am going to get some cleaning done. It's friday! Last day of school (I was at the store at 7am buying "teacher presents" because I forgot) and the kids only have a half day. It's still gloomy and rainy outside so we're going to stay home today. I wasn't able to see Kung Fu Panda last weekend because of the storms, but this weekend, we'll make it!

Be safe, everyone!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Storms Part II

So I get home from a marathon of errand-running with the baby yesterday afternoon, and I notice that my virus protection has detected and removed a trojan from my computer. Relieved, I start surfing...only the computer won't move. It won't load anything. It is stuck on the welcome page. I try a different browser...same thing.

Hmmm. So I reboot. It's S-L-O-W-E-R than Thing Three eating broccoli. So I had to spend a few hours debugging and cleaning and scanning and all sorts of fun stuff.

It's still not 100%, but it's working. I may have to load more memory on it eventually. UGH.

So we're getting MORE severe thunderstorms and flash floods today. It was in Iowa yesterday (sadly, one of the tornadoes killed 4 boy scouts during a campout--so sad!) and it's arriving here today.

Hubby and I set the mower from 6 to 4, and mowed the lawn last night. It took a very long time, thank heaven the mower has headlights on it--Hubby was mowing in the dark. He finished at 9pm. We figured our neighbors didn't hate us too much, because we could hear lawn mowers all over when we finished. I think people are just getting the grass down because they know they won't be able to mow for a while, when storms like these push through. (We all have acre or acre+ lots, so it's not good to let them get long.)

I just hope the weather isn't too bad. Last time we got 10 inches of rain in two days. I will say our shrubs and trees have exploded with all the water, but I feel bad for the people at the bottom of the subdivision who literally have LAKES WITH SEAGULLS in their front yards.

Hopefully the power will stay on. It is HIGHLY annoying to be powerless, not to mention all the devices and appliances and clocks I have to run around and set the time for when the power does come back on.

So it will be a quiet day. We're staying close to home, and I'm looking forward to reading my friend's chapter. I'm really getting into her story.

I'd better take advantage--today is the last quiet day where it's just be me and the baby!


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Home Stretch...

School is out in two days! Woo!

Um, wait a minute, am I supposed to be excited about this? Hmmmm, let me think really hard about that one.

Okay. I get it now. What was I thinking? School is out in two days! AAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!


Okay this his highly annoying. Every morning when I sit down to blog, my blinds are closed, but the sun is shining right through the crack in the slats made by the thread holes-- and a ray of sun always shines RIGHT into my eyes. If I lean to the left or right, it's fine, but if I sit normal--BLINDING SUN. Sheesh!

EVERYONE was mowing their lawns yesterday, it was quite funny. We had sun most of the day, and it was a balmy 80-ish degrees. Today will be sunny too, and then we're having "strong" thunderstorms for the next few days.

That's just fine, as long as it doesn't rain today, I have a year-end picnic I am going to for Thing Three's class.
I've got sunscreen and a hat for the baby. He loves being outdoors--but hates the sun in his eyes. Normally he pulls a hat off the moment I put it on his head, but when he realizes he can see better and the blinding sun is out of his eyes, he keeps the hat on. Smart kid.

He's so fun right now. Whenever he sees flowers he stretches his hand out and says "Pretty!" He wants to touch. So I carry him over and he "touches" (but very gently), and he giggles. It's a little game we play.

Okay, yeah, I know, but he's a baby and I think it's adorable. :-)

So back to mowing the lawn--I had to do it twice again, and it took forever. And I am the Freckle Queen right now. The sun always brings them out. Even when I wear 45, like I did yesterday.

Gotta be good to my skin.

Time to run!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Countdown has Begun...

Status: Mellow. Surprisingly so.

I am enjoying what's left of the calm before the Storm. The Storm, you ask? Yes. The storm of "Mom, I'm bored" and "Mom, there isn't anything to do" complaints.

Friday is the last day of school. No more homework, no more books, no more teacher's...well, you get the idea.

No more insane lunch bills, no more scrambling to find MIA Library books, no more "projects" that involve as much parent involvement as child's, and FINALLY, no more craziness trying to find "stuff" before the bus comes, EVERY morning, resulting in me yelling and having crazy high blood pressure.

WHEW. I do have an important rule, though. If the kids say "Mom I'm bored" or anything that remotely resembles it, I put them to work cleaning something, no ifs ands or buts.

Yeah, I'm mean. Luckily the kids love to be outdoors, and they love to ride bikes and play catch and have picnics. I mean, we have a freaking LAKE down the road!!! And there is so much to do! We are going to have FUN!!

Whether they like it or not! ;-)

Monday, June 09, 2008

Lara Almighty...

Yeah, I'm wondering if I should build the ark case you wondered...

Saturday was a mess. Tornado warnings and hurricane-force winds and flash floods and craziness. We were all hunkered down in the basement, and it was kind of "fun" for a few hours, but scary mostly. The wind was INSANE. The rain was INSANE. Luckily, our hail only got gumball-sized, instead of the golf balls that were raining down on other parts of the state.

At one point, Hubby was looking out the windows, and he said to me "Lara, what's that?" I went to the window and saw that our normally flat grass in the sideyard suddenly had a big hill on it. Seriously. It looked like some huge thing was trying to force it's way out of the ground.

It honestly scared me. I had visions from the movie "Poltergeist" where the coffins of the graveyard they happened to unwittingly build their house over started coming to the surface during the rainstorm, shoving their way to the surface, and opening up, exposing what was inside...


So, I had to find out. I armed myself with an umbrella and crocs and went outside to see what was up with the "Instant Hill" in our yard. It was about two feet tall, and six feet long. *Shudder*

I poked it. And it quivered like a mountain of jello. It was filled with water!!!

I realized that when they buried the downspout, the exit hole in the grass had since grown together, so when the storm drains forced all the water into the ground at flash-flood speed, it got trapped under the sod and caused the huge "water bubble" under the sod. I got some garden shears and started poking the sides, to get all the water out. It was like popping a huge, green, hairy blister. FUN.

So, that was the most exciting part. The kids watched back-to-back Disney movies in the Theater (which is underground so we thought it the safest place) and Hubby was glued to the weather channel, while I Ebayed on the computer.

But now there are lakes where there shouldn't be lakes and all the flowers we spent hundreds of dollars on and potted are pretty much drowned (we had to run around gathering them under shelter but some of the pots were just too big) but we are lucky. Some people lost trees, power, homes, life, etc.

What a mess. And it's been raining since. Hasn't stopped. Tomorrow is supposed to be sunny again. Guess who gets to mow the lawn!!!

That would be HUBBY.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

We're Alive...

Thanks for the concerned emails. Yes, we are alive, and we weren't carried away/washed away/drowned/flooded out by the many tornadoes and flash floods yesterday.

Although I am beginning to suspect we should start constructing an ARK in our backyard...

I'll give details on Monday!


Friday, June 06, 2008

A Little Trivia for You...

Did you know today is National Doughnut Day? Yeah, me neither-- till I saw the headlines this morning. Perhaps I should make an obligatory trip to Krispy Kreme...hmmm...hard decision.

*wink wink*

I had to cancel my oil change this morning, the baby has a fever. I just wish he'd feel better! He got that nasty virus I came home with--despite my best efforts to wash my hands every two minutes and deplete an entire 80 oz. bottle of hand sanitizer in three he wouldn't get my germs. Go figure.

I've knackered him up with Motrin, and he wanted to sleep so I put him down. When they're sick, I usually don't worry about the regular nap schedule. Sleep helps a body heal. Hopefully he'll be better soon.

Heh heh, I was a crazy lawnmowing freak yesterday. The storm finally broke and in the afternoon we had some patches of sun, so I broke out the lawnmower and got to work. The grass roots were still wet, and I had to mow twice, but I did it. I don't want to spend $85 on something I can do in an hour and a half. We have one acre, so it can get pricey.

But it's done! Hubby comes home tonight--around dinnertime. Friday night is always Pizza night, and we can get our Papa Murphy's fix. I swear, that stuff never gets old.


Is that completely insane or what? Soccer is over, Softball games are only Mondays and Wednesdays, and Saturdays are ours to do whatever we want from here on out! No more rushing around from practice to game to game to game. We can RELAX. Although this is summer. Who wants to lay around when it's so beautiful outside? Although right now humid, muggy and overcast seems to be the norm. Rain rain go away!!!

I have some laundry to finish up, and then I'm going to work on the story. I've neglected the writing piece in leiu of research the last couple of days, but I feel research is JUST as important as crafting the story. Have to have my facts straight!

Have a great weekend everyone! Kung Fu Panda here we come!!! :-)

Thursday, June 05, 2008


Well, I should have cut the grass yesterday. I felt it at 5pm and it was wet, so I figured I'd do it today. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!

It's currently thunderstorming, we're under Flood Watch, Tornado Watch, and a huge crack of lightning directly above our house woke us all up at 6:30 this morning--nature's alarm, apparently.

I just looked at the weather. Thunderstorms for the next seven days. WTH??? How am I ever going to mow the lawn? It's going to get so long we'll have to pay to have it done--and they are charging us $85 per mow now. YUCK.

What can you do? At least we're at the top of the hill. There's this one poor house, at the bottom of the hill, that gets everyone's water and every time it rains, they end up with a lake in their front yard. And it takes a good week or two to pump out all the water and dry it up. They are going to flood, after seven days of rain!

I wonder if the softball games will be cancelled? Thing One had her game last night; she had TWO home runs (go Thing One!) and she was really happy about them. They are still pitching with a machine, because the girls aren't adept at fastpitch yet. She is really enjoying herself, even more so than when she was in soccer. And I got her into a Volleyball camp this summer, too. She's tall, so I think it will be good for her.

I got a big old goose-egg in for the writing yesterday. I was researching, mostly, and I promised Thing One it would be Movie Night. Her movie of choice? Win A Date With Tad Hamilton. Yeah, of course now she's violently in love with Josh Duhamel (I don't mind looking at him myself!) which is a little better than her last "love"--Gerard Butler, who is OLDER than her father, but I digress...

Today is a cleaning day. I'm not going anywhere in this rain (just a Girl Scout Bridging ceremony later tonight) so it will be a cleaning day. Woo Hoo. Fun Fun Fun.

A Thrilling Day. Thank heaven my shoulder is better.

Oh, and good news with the baby! His hips are right where they should be, and he doesn't have to go back for X-rays for a whole YEAR. Hooray! We've been praying to hear that, I tell you. :-)

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Where Did May Go?

Okay, seriously, who's playing with the Remote of my Life? Who hit 2X speed? May was gone in a zip, it's already June? School is out in two weeks, and I can't believe the year is half over already!

Everyone always tells me to "enjoy" my kids while they're young, and I am finally starting to get it, because they are growing front of my eyes. *sniff*

Or maybe it's just because I'm so busy running around, the time flies. Who knows?

It was cloudy and cold yesterday, and it is supposed to rain every day this week. UGH. Mowing the lawn in the rain is not fun, but of course Hubby had to do the crazy "fertilizer thing" this past weekend and the grass is growing at an alarming rate. And when I mow wet grass, it always gets stuck in the pipe, instead of blowing up into the bagging unit. So I have to stop every other row and shake it out, unclog it, and latch it back on. NOT FUN, PEOPLE!

Writing Ramblings:
I logged in 2400 words yesterday. Hooray for me! I am getting to the "good part" now--the part where they realize that they've stumbled on something big...and I've played it all out in my head a dozen times. They find an ancient artifact, and I get to start telling the story of the person that artifact belonged to. Can't wait!

Unfortunately, it has to wait until tonight. I am taking Thing Four to the Children's hospital for X-rays this morning. The Dr. hasn't seen him in six months and he wants to make sure his hips are still going in the right direction. I'm hoping for good news. So far, that's all we've had, so more of the same would be welcome. I would like to put all of that behind us, at this point. He's only slightly delayed from wearing the harness for four months--he's not walking yet but he's crawling like a champ and starting to pull up on stuff. No complaints from me!

Time to get ready! Wish me luck--looks like I'm mowing a wet lawn today! :-P

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Writing Desk from Hades.

Status: Tired. I've been a baaaaad girl. Going to bed way too late for my own good...

So I've been actually writing lately. A story that just won't go away. I type on and off during the day, snatching bits and pieces of time. Progress is slow, because it's set in Mexico, a place I have never been. So, I am relying heavily on GOOGLE and firsthand accounts from other travelers. I've finally hit the saturation point with book research, I've bought enough to get me through without sounding like a completely ignorant moron. There's only a few authorities I trust in this field anyway. So I'm pounding away at it, piece by piece, and when I go to bed, the characters have conversations in my head and I end up turning on the light and scribbling notes in my bedside notepad. This story seems to want to get written. I've been "dabbling" with it since 2005, but now, it won't go away. Seems like a subtle enough hint.

But oh, the horror that is my writing desk! I imagine I would be hard-pressed to find any writer with an immaculate desk (who doesn't have OCD, that doesn't count). It's my "home base" in my home. Other than the Kitchen, the desk is MY place.

And it looks like it. Empty cups, gum wrappers (when I'm crafting a sentence I can't think of the pressing task of actually shooting the wrapper into the trashcan two feet away) research books, typed notes, scribbled notes, bits of paper, confisctated snacks (my kids bring them down to me and ask if they can have some and I say no and keep the snack on the desk because I know they'll sneak some if they take it back upstairs) and although my desk is in chaos, I have everything "out" so I can see it when I need it.

I take comfort in the fact that I am not alone. If you go to J.K. Rowling's website, you'll see a picture of my desk. Really. I think Writer's Desks all look the same. We can't be bothered with keeping it tidy, we have movies running through our heads that need to be put down on paper/in the computer as quickly as possible, before we lose the idea.

Today I have had enough, though. I'm going to clean it. I'm sure it will be a wreck in a few days again, but at least I'll have a fresh start.

Thing Two is going to the Zoo today with his class. Sometimes I think he belongs in a zoo. He and his brother. They are like...monkeys on speed. Boys are so active when they play, it drives me nuts.

I'm so glad it's nice out, because I can kick them out of the house and make them run around the backyard. Yay! I'm going to buy a pool at Target tomorrow--one of the eight footers. It will be perfect to just take a dip in when it's hot. You know the kind, where it has it's own cleaning system. We had one in Denver, but some valuable parts got lost when we moved.

I love Spring! Everything is so green and pretty and lush--these are the days I love where I live.

Time to eat breakfast--it's Tuesday Toast Day!

Monday, June 02, 2008

My Son is Terrified of Bugs.

Did I go wrong somewhere in my parenting? Did my own irrational phobia of bugs transfer to him in the womb? Questions, questions.

First off, I loathe bugs. Spiders are pretty high up there on the list, but the CRUNCHY bugs, like beetles and roaches, can make my blood run cold. I was a constant victim of adrenaline in our first apartment when Hubby and I were first married: we lived in Houston and our apartment was infested with roaches. It was nightmarish, truly. They would come out of the sink drain at night, and run around our counters, lay eggs, etc.

Ugh, I shudder, just remembering. When I was growing up, I lived in a nearly 100-year old house, and I was constantly smashing HUGE brown spiders. In fact, the hairs on the back of my neck are standing straight up right now, just because I'm typing about bugs.

Maybe I can blame my dad. I remember him squashing spiders, and chasing after us all over the house with the squashed spider on a tissue. I remember thinking I will seriously die if he wipes that on me. So, THANKS, dad. I can blame my irrational fear on you. ;-)

So, my phobia seems to have landed squarely on Thing Two. Thing One is afraid of bugs, too, but she's a girl. How many of you have sons who do the "bug dance" over a fruit fly? My son does. He's nine, and he's a big boy, and he crumbles at the sight of beetles. Spiders send him right onto the furniture, madly clutching pillows in a panic. Beetles have the power to send him running, screaming, out of the room. He freaks out when it rains, because all the worms come up and he has to walk around them in the morning when he takes the bus to school.

But lately, his arch nemesis has been....da de da da: MOSQUITOES. You get one of those bad boys around him and he has a meltdown of flapping and screaming. Luckily I got him out of the "screaming" thing, so now he just "flaps" silently and moves away.

He's going to get teased in school. Mercilessly. I feel bad for him. Once they find out his weakness, he's done for.

I tried not to make him afraid of bugs. I've even practically bitten my own tongue in two and fought off the shakes, just calmly holding a beetle or a caterpillar (shudder) in my hand for him to see, when he was growing up, to see that they are "harmless."

I know they're harmless, for the most part. But they're squishy and crunchy and ugly and fast and dark and loathesome, and I just have no interest in them whatsoever. My other son, who is seven, is fine with bugs. He's the designated "bug squisher" at our house. He's the only one brave enough. But, poor Thing Two...