Monday, February 28, 2011

My Academy Award-Nominated Role...

Sorry, feeling a little snarky this morning...

Okay is it me, or were the Academy Awards just sort of...Meh? Everyone I thought was going to win, did. No surprise, there. James Franco as host was about as exciting as a Tax Seminar. Even in Marylin Monroe getup. Anne Hathaway was adorable, but she needed a host partner, not a Tax Seminar.

I love how Colin Firth thanked his wife for sticking with him through thick and thin. Honey, I've stuck with you through thick and thin, too. You deserve it. You are forever my Mr. Darcy. :-)

Good thing Natalie Portman isn't married yet. Otherwise the Oscar Curse would be something to worry about. Unless they're SECRETLY married...

Okay, snark over.

We had a good weekend. GO BYU!!! I wanted to run around outside in my Jimmer jersey after their win, but I resisted. I've bragged about that, already, right? I have a SIGNED by the MAN HIMSELF Jimmer Jersey. #32. Yes, my BIL, who works closely with the BYU sports program, gave us one for Christmas. I need to get it shadow boxed asap!

Anyway, Hubby left for NYC this morning. He took his long wool coat. Funny, it's going to be 82 degrees today, and he's going to need a coat in New York. It was 70 and gorgeous here on Saturday, and we looked at the Pewaukee, WI weather (where I used to live) and it was like NINE degrees and SNOWING. Yikes!

All the trees are blossoming, here. Charlotte sure is starting to get beautiful!

I hope everyone has a happy Monday. On the schedule for the week, CLEAN THE HOUSE. Exciting, I know.

But hey, at least I get to ACT a little this week! The Academy better be watching my performance! On Thursday night we're having a church meeting and I get to play the part of Virgin #6 in the Parable of the Ten Virgins story. Yeah, that Virgin # 6, she was spunky! She wasn't wise, (that part was already taken, darn it) but man, she knew how to have a good time! Wooooweee!
(okay, Mom, stop LAUGHING!!!)


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Does this Background Make My Blog Look Big?

I'm pretty patriotic, for those of you who don't know me. And I love Americana themes. Especially antiqued. So, those are the colors I choose for this blog. All courtesy, of course, of The Cutest Blog On The Block, which, frankly, caters to the inner Crafty in all of us.

I'm a little on the fence on this latest background. It may be a little "Plain Jane" for me. I like frou frou. I'm a little "Victorian" in my decorating, as in, I like to have surfaces with plants, candles, display plates, knick-knacks, TEXTURE. Spartan just isn't my taste. It's the Taurus in me, according to my friend. The Domestic Goddess in me worships at the Altar of Hobby Lobby. ;-) Or Garden Ridge, now that I live close to one! (THANKYOUTHANKYOUTHANKYOU.)

So, yesterday kind of sucked. Well, a lot sucked. But I did rearrange the office. Organized the dump drawers, files, rearranged furniture, added lamps for light, etc. Made it cozy and inviting, and conducive to writing. Which I plan to do a lot of. In one of my houses someday, I want a full-on LIBRARY. Because despite loving the Kindle and iPad to read books on, I still LOVE real books. And I have a lot of them.

Today is a jam-packed schedule, so I will be busy and get over how yesterday sucked. I guess it could be worse--I could be knee-deep in SNOW, like SOME places. ;-)

Hope everyone has a good Thursday.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

TV Shows Rock.

Hubby and I, we are TV show watchers. Granted, we are both pretty busy so we mostly watch on weekend nights, but thank heaven for DVR. We've had to become ULTRA selective over what we choose to record as well, because if we don't watch and delete the shows, our DVR fills up pretty quickly. A year ago, this is what we were recording:

American Idol
CSI Miami
CSI New York
Criminal Minds
Lie to Me
The Mentalist
Vampire Diaries (for me, Hubby refuses to watch even five minutes of one episode ;-)
White Collar
Human Target
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles

Yeah, seriously, a LOT of shows. Note we only have one reality show in there. 'Nuff said.

ANYWAYWENEVERHADTIMETOWATCHALLTHOSE, it was obviously a bit much. So, we've narrowed down the list substantially. Now, we only record:

Criminal Minds
CSI New York
Fringe (I watch it when Hubby travels, it is just too "weird" for him)
Vampire Diaries (me again)

And that's it. So, my question is, are there any other shows we SHOULD be watching? Anyone jumping up and down over what we cut out? Opinions are welcome. Oh, and would it be too much to ask for a 27-hour day, so we can watch more shows at night? ;-)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tuesday Odds and Ends.

I hope everyone had a happy President's Day. My kids were in school, to make up for snow days. Which was fine, but it was 75 degrees out and it would have been more fun to PLAY outside!

Things are starting to turn green, here. I see green mist in the trees around the neighborhood, the birds are all crazy chattering in the mornings, and it is balmy and warm. Gotta love Spring! For someone who has lived in a Frozen Tundra the last seven years (Wisconsin) it was usually about a foot of frozen snow on the ground in February. Spring never really happened until MAY. Just sayin'...

Had a checkup at the Dentist yesterday. No cavities. :-) In fact, he told me I have nice strong teeth. Which was nice to hear. I fully admitted to him I only floss about three times a week (okay, stop gasping) and he said that was more than most people. Since Hubby flosses morning and night, I was ready for a good chastising, but apparently I'm...normal. Hooray!

The primary president and I were chatting in the hall at church on Sunday and she asked me if I was expecting. I was like, huh??? She said the only reason she was asking was because ONE OF MY SONS was telling everyone at Tuesday night activities I'd just found out I was having a baby, and the rumors were rampant.

After making a mental note to string my son up by his toes (after I found out which son it was!) I told her that no, we are done having kids and four is enough, thank you very much. After church we found out it was Thing Two, who insists he was joking, but we had to explain to him that MOST kids don't pick up on SARCASM.

Sheesh. Kids. Oy.

 I've drained my orange juice, so it's time to get going. Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Darn You, Lego Harry Potter!!!

Thing Four (who is three) is obsessed, OBSESSED I tell you, with Lego Harry Potter. I have the app on my iPad, and he wants to play it all the time. Of course, since I'm a fabulous mom and he could be doing other things like reading books and memorizing the periodic table, etc. etc., I LIMIT his time playing this game.

It really is a cute game. It's Harry Potter, years 1-4, in Legos. The cut scenes are adorable. The play is fun, not unlike the regular EA games. But there's a hitch: you have to "trace" the shape of a spell, to cast it. Guess who lacks the fine motor skills to trace these complicated shapes? (Because he's three.) Yep. Thing Four. So, literally, when he plays it, he is asking me or Hubby every ten seconds or so, to trace a shape. It's become a source of frustration in our family. He really wants to play the game, we really don't want to sit there with him and trace the spell shapes. I walked in on Hubby yesterday, who was lying down on the bed after church with Thing four, and Hubby (half asleep) was tracing shapes for Thing Four with one eye open. It was hilarious. He looked at me and said "I've been doing this for 45 minutes."

My response? "Welcome to my world."

And you know how 3-year olds are. They watch movies 5086 times in a row. They fixate. They get obsessed. Thing Four SOBS if I tell him he can't play this game. He is an angel and gets all excited and fun to be around when I grudgingly let him play the game.


Friday, February 18, 2011

World's Shortest Blog Post (For Me, Anyway...)

I'm running! Have a great weekend! I Love Everybody!!!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Lions and Monkeys and Zebras, Oh My...

Thing Four and I went on a walk yesterday on the nature trail by our house. The trees haven't bloomed, yet, but there were a few green things poking up. Thing Four has always loved the nature trail. He thinks there are monkeys hiding in the trees, and Lions and Zebras and Giraffes. :-)

Three-year olds are imaginative, that way. ;-)

By the time we were heading back for home, he wasn't "running" any more. In fact, he wanted to hitch a ride on mommy. Well, we had gone a mile and a half so I don't blame him. I gave him a piggy-back the rest of the way. Which proved problematic with slippy-slidey track pants...

Here's a funny: Whenever we walk up the stairs together, Thing Four "races" me and of course, I always let him win. Or we "tie." The other day I was running around right before we were leaving to run some errands, and I forgot something in my room. Apparently Thing Four decided to "race" me up the stairs to my room, but I was deep in thought and took the stairs two at a time, not realizing what he was doing. I came back out of my room to see him standing on the stairs, dumbstruck, his little mouth open in shock.
"What's wrong?" I asked him. His response:

"MOM, you won the race! You beat me! You don't do that to a three-year old!!!!"

Yes, honest-to-gosh, he really said that. Oh boy.

Today is going to be a lot of running around. Which is fine, but I am cringing at the $3.25 for REGULAR UNLEADED gasoline. I'm sure prices are higher elsewhere, but I have a gas-guzzler. That's why I go to South Carolina to buy my gas. ;-) It's loads cheaper.

Happy Thursday, everyone!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Deep Random Thoughts By Lara

Yesterday was a little crazy. Just a little. :-)

Here are some random thoughts for you:

1) I need to clean off my desk

2) The neighborhood cat has adopted the back porch

3) My boys left their bikes out all night and they're still sitting in the side yard.

4) Milk delivered in glass bottles is the BOMB

5) Cherry Blowpops (of which we have 405847 left over from Valentine's day candy) are quite tasty.

6) Someone seriously wrote "wash me" on the back window of my car. (#!&*#!! dusty road construction!!)

And that's about it. Happy Wednesday, everyone.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Ah, yes, the lovely Valentine's Day. Dreaded by many, loathed by some, embraced by most. My significant other is currently in Las Vegas on a business trip, so I am going to dinner with a friend tonight.

We had a busy but good weekend. Sunday Thing Three and I finished up his Cape Hatteras Lighthouse project, complete with tri-fold display with all sorts of info and facts. We sawed off the bottom of an old bird house, painted it, then taped up a Styrofoam cone, and cannibalized one of Thing Four's Megamind Happy Meal toys for the top, complete with duct-tape covered toothpicks. It was tedious work, but it turned out well. Here is The Real Cape Hatteras Lighthouse:
Here is his (slightly smaller) version:

Yeah, he kind of goofed and it only has two stripes. But hey, it lights up!

I think he (and I!) did a great job. And you gotta love modeling clay. It truly rocks.

I hope everyone has a lovely Valentine's day. Even if you don't have a partner to share it with, tell all the people who are important in your life you love them. It's a great day to do it! :-)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Grateful Post.

I think sometimes it's easy to get caught up in the negative aspects of Life. It's so easy to do this, it's criminal. We Wallow. We Complain. Bemoan. All that jazz. Why me? Why now? Life could be 90% happy, and 10% unhappy, and which percent do we focus on? Look at the news. Is it ever happy?

We have choices in Life. I believe we chose to be here, so we could better ourselves. Life is not just how we end up, it's how we live it--how we react and function with the particular set of circumstances and gifts we've been given. THAT is what defines us.

So, today, I'm choosing to be grateful. Because I have a lot to be grateful for. Sure, I could whine about some things in my life, (and my Hubby will tell you I do plenty of that) but I also choose to laugh. Because Life is funny too. Life is Unpredictable. Messy. Frustrating. Lovely. Complicated. Heartbreaking. Joyous.

How we choose to emerge from each experience in Life is entirely up to us.

I used to LOATHE the saying "When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade!" It's cheesy. It's cliche. But it's smart advice. Because when Life gives you rotten potatoes, you simply cut out the rotten parts and add some cheese and sour cream and chives and bake it up and make it something delectable.

And now I'm hungry for breakfast, so I'll end this post. But today, I'm choosing gratitude.

What will you choose?

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

I'm Going To Steal The D*** Staples Easy Button.

Thanks for all the concerned emails. I didn't mean to freak anyone out. :-) Things are fine...just stressful!

You know how it goes. We all have days like this. Days where the toast drops butter-side down. Days where the cake falls in the oven. Days where you just have to suck it up and soldier on, because no one is going to do it for you. THOSE kind of days. That was yesterday. Today is different. Today is busy. Today this is me:
And with THAT vivid visual, I bid you all good day! Bock bock.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Stressed Out.

First off, HOORAY PACKERS!!!! The game was a "little" stressful for us, but they hung in there at the end, even with all the injuries to their offensive lineup. *WHEW!*

I had some seriously stressful dreams last night. I was young again (college age) and I hadn't gone in to work for a while, and I heard I had been "fired" because of too many no-shows. And I was completely guilt-ridden over it. Weird. I never missed work when I was in college. I couldn't afford to. ;-)

Thing One is feeling better, but now my two older boys are complaining of sore throats. Strep is going around, so THAT is exactly what I need. It's probably viral, because Thing One is complaining that I didn't let her stay home from school when her throat hurt, so I think they have what she had. But who knows. I am not a physician. I just know when your whole throat hurts from chest to chin, as opposed to just the tonsil area, something is UP. Stress.

And on top of that I have other stressful things going on, that I can't really talk about. No, I'm not pregnant, and no, we're not relocating. We're staying right in Charlotte, thank you very much. ;-) Just...STRESS.

Hubby stayed home from work yesterday with an upset stomach (I suspect it was all the food we pigged out on for the Superbowl!) and he and I were talking yesterday, and I mentioned we'd be "stupid" not to do something, and Thing Four (who is three) immediately piped up: "Are you calling me STUPID???"

I assured him that no, I was just "saying that" to be silly. A few minutes later, I was talking and Thing Four looks up and says "MOM! You're really going to string (Thing Two) up by his toes???"

Good grief. I really need to watch what I say from now on! Three-year old's don't really "get" figures of speech. And I'm kind of the QUEEN of those. So, I have to watch what I say. Which is not easy for me.


Friday, February 04, 2011

Okay This Cracked Me UP!

And yes, I know how to pronounce all of these names! Even Oconomowoc. ;-)

Go GREEN This Weekend!!!

Cross all your fingers and toes! Our house is going to be overrun (20 people but who's counting?) and we will be wearing our green! Go Packers!!!

We had a crazy day, yesterday. I'm not going into detail, but it was scary enough for me to pull Thing Three out of school and take him home with me. I'm just glad he's safe, and unharmed. (An incident on the school bus.) He's fine today, luckily he has a pretty cheerful disposition so he escaped relatively unscathed. Although I truly think if my neighbors could arm themselves with torches and pitchforks, they WOULD. It's been interesting.

Poor Thing One is sick again. She JUST had the flu two weeks ago, now it's a head cold. She got it from a friend, I'm pretty sure. Why can't cold viruses be the SAME?? Once you get a cold, then you're done and immune for the rest of the season. But no, there have to be different strains and mutations and all that crud. And I can only IMAGINE what she's getting exposed to at school. I should have stayed away from the "What Germs Are On/In Your Body" exhibit at the Discovery museum. I really should have. **shudder**

Have a good weekend, everyone! GO GREEN BAY!!!!!

Thursday, February 03, 2011

NEWSFLASH: Kids Grow!!!

Either that, or I'm shrinking everything in the dryer. But I will say, the latter is possible. I dry most of my kids' clothes on low, because they are all tall. On Thing One, every t-shirt becomes a belly shirt eventually. Case in point, the school P.E. uniforms. You can buy a pair for $15. The shorts are shiny blue polyester, so they don't shrink, but the gray school logo t-shirts--they shrink about a quarter inch up every time I wash them. And since they are P.E. shirts, they need to be washed frequently. I've already had to buy a couple of sets. *grumble*

Thing Three suddenly grew out of all his new shoes I bought him. And Thing Four seriously grew overnight, because all his shoes don't fit, either. And they fit last week!!!

It's a given, when you have a young child, that you need to buy them a completely new wardrobe every six months. Well, with my Thing Four, who is three and in a size 5T, I've had to do it a little more frequently. Every time people ask how old he is and I tell them he's three, the eyebrows go right up. "Wow, he's tall! He looks like a five-year old!"

And then I make the joke about how he's going to be a pro football player, etc. etc.

I need to buy new church clothes for everyone. I need to buy all new shoes. Maybe if I stopped feeding them...  ;-)

We are throwing a big bash for the Superbowl on Sunday. My boys are ecstatic, they will be wearing their Green Bay jerseys (and to answer your question, no, I have never owned nor will I ever own a Cheese Head!) and we've invited a few families over and we're doing snacks galore. And barbecue. I just hope the Packers win. They SO deserve it!

Guess I'd better get the house cleaned up...

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Oh Fudgebuckets!!!

HA HA. My three-year old just said that out loud! I'm wondering where he learned it...

Okay. Health and fitness my eye. Why is it I have all the resolve in the world until I get within 100 feet of a Chick-Fil-A?

Not going there. But my family enjoyed it, too, last night. Those nuggets have some sort of addictive SOMETHING in them, I swear. ;-)

Hubby is on his way to Atlanta, the kids are wearing short sleeves (it's going to be 70 today!) and I red boxed Secretariat for us to watch tonight after dinner. We always wanted to see it in the theater, but never got around to it. I love John Malkovich. I can't wait to see what he did with his character in this one!

I'm getting into Packing and Dejunking Mode, once more, because, yes, we're moving again. Granted our lease with this house isn't up until June, and we may be staying a little longer than that because we've decided to build, but I need to get the process started. Goodwill is going to love me, this year.

I was a little sad, last night, because the Pinewood Derby happened and both of my boys aren't cub scouts anymore. They're too old to participate. They had so much fun, the years they did it. But hey, my three-year old will be a cub scout in five years and we'll get to do it all over again! WOO!

I've been giving Thing One, my 13-year old daughter grief, lately, because all she wants to wear to school are jeggings and a hoodie (NOT a zip hoodie, those are "uncool,") and either Uggs or the black and white Converse hightops she stole from her brother. As in, that's ALL she wants to wear. And she likes drab colors like black and gray and brown and I have been freaking out, thinking she wears the same type of thing over and over.

The other day I went to her seventh grade play, and I immediately understood. EVERY SINGLE GIRL in that school wears jeggings, a drab hoodie, and Uggs or Converse hightops. Seriously. It reminded me of a Clone Factory. And not a bright color to be seen anywhere. There were a couple of girls in brights, but they stood out like sore thumbs, and clearly didn't "get it."

It was all very Gattaca-like. Can't blame my daughter for conforming, I guess, but she used to have SOME individuality. But I need to cut her some slack because she just moved here and she wants to fit right in. Mission accomplished. I guess I'm saying I miss my non-eyeliner wearing sweet-tempered twelve-year old Thing One. *sniff* She's gone forever. *double sniff*

And now I need to go and redirect my 11-year old son, who thinks it's perfectly okay to play with his iPod Touch before school....grumble...

Tuesday, February 01, 2011


Wow. It's February???? Tick tock. Tick tock.

Thing Three, yesterday, handed me a detailed list of supplies he needed for his school project--that is due in two weeks. Love him. I think he observed my state of frustration with Thing One and her lack of planning, and he's determined to NOT go through that. ;-)

I'm itching to see a good movie. You know, the whole theater experience. I want to get my little tub of popcorn and my Coke Zero with a splash of cherry in it, and laugh and cry and ENJOY a movie. Any recommendations? I know this time of year they don't really have anything good out. My parents saw The King's Speech and they said it was amazing. I have always been fascinated with the story of George and Elizabeth, and until now it was probably a little-known fact that he struggled with a stammer.

It will be interesting to see how the Oscars pan out. From what I hear, it's pretty tight between The King's Speech and The Social Network. Which is another movie I haven't had time to see. LAME!

Did taxes last night over the phone with the accountant. The paperwork was a little "hairy" this year with the move and relocation and job change, and can I just say I'm SO GLAD the current administration changed the tax rules so you can no longer claim a loss on your house? (Yes, I'm being extremely sarcastic.) Capital Loss? A thing of the past. You can only claim a loss if you sell a BUSINESS and lose money on it, now.
One more thing to love about our current administration. But I won't go there. Not here.

 Hubby read to me last night the amount of snow the Midwest is going to get. YIKES. But January through March are the coldest months, in Wisconsin, I remember. I hope everyone stays safe!

I still can't believe it's February already. Am I the only one?