Saturday, February 28, 2009

An Honestly Good Time

Today, I hitched up my big girl pants and went to see an old friend.  Yes, I was nervous.  I think I did a good job of not coming across that way.  (How did I do, Ang?)

The kids and I all descended on Angela's home, and we gabbed and caught up and smiled at the baby and ate lunch, and just generally had a really nice time.  It's such an interesting process, bringing a long-standing friendship into the present, and reacquainting yourself with this new, adult version of your friend.

Here's the photographic evidence:

Angela and I really haven't seen each other since high school.  (Once? At Kristy's cookie decorating party over Christmas break of '94?)  If I thought seeing "grown up" pictures of friends from high school on Facebook was fun, actually going and visiting the grown up version beats the photos with a stick. :o)

Here are Angela and her exceptionally decent and nice husband, Padraic.

There was a considerable amount of chaos during the visit (especially when the talking Dinoco helicopter made repeated landings on the coffee table), but it all worked out really well.  The melee was fairly well-spread . . . 

And, my next-to-most-favorite part about the visit . . . 

A shower curtain shrine to the Periodic Table.  Complete with rubber ducky hooks. :o)

Thanks for the great afternoon, Angela.  Let's do it again, soon!

Friday, February 27, 2009

How I Do It

Today my neighbor told me she doesn't know how I do it . . . How I take care of five children all day without losing my mind. "Mine drive me crazy, and I only have two!" she said as she began on her way.

As I went on with my morning after that exchange, I carefully mused over how many other women (and men) have told me that same thing. How their one or two or three children drive them crazy, even though they love them.  How they can't imagine spending all day with their children.  (Am I the only one whose heart breaks when I hear that?)  And I could only come up with one difference that applied in every instance:

I have consciously chosen to NOT distance myself from my children.

I don't work for money. They don't "go to" school. Up until a few months ago, Vern worked from home.  It hasn't been easy. (Ha!) And I still have plenty of moments and melt-downs. (As do the kids.) 


We have learned how to honestly like each other.  Not just that familial love that only surfaces at big milestones and crises, but actually, honestly like one another.  Every day, we're learning to treat each other with courtesy and kindness out of sheer necessity.  We have been together. 

Instead of my children learning to treat their teachers and other people's children with respect, they are learning it at home.  Home.  Where this stuff is supposed to be learnt.  Where all of the work of learning these skills and Christ-like attributes will do them good in the things that matter most.  Very few of us have good friends from high school living close by.  It's hard to make new friends in this world of ours.  But family is hard to get rid of. ;o)

I don't know what I'll do when they grow up and start off on their own . . . but I hope and pray that we'll have managed to spend enough time together that not only will we have a million more memories than most families, but the loving friendship that ties my children to me will be strong enough to keep them from disappearing into adulthood, leaving me behind. (And hopefully they'll come back from wherever they go upon fledging, and live somewhere nearby. ;o)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Hopefully this is better.

That last theme, while it looked good for a few hours, got to be a bit much.

Hopefully this is better on the eyes. :o)

Must. Blog. Soon.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

This Just In!

Apparently, I'm a conflicted, fantabulous, relaxed-yet-classic Type A personality.

You Are Bold and Fearless
You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection.
You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive.
You have the classic "Type A" personality.

You are very intuitive and wise. You understand the world better than most people.
You also have a very active imagination. You often get carried away with your thoughts.
You are prone to a little paranoia and jealousy. You sometimes go overboard in interpreting signals.

You are relaxed, chill, and very likely to go with the flow.
You are light hearted and accepting. You don't get worked up easily.
Well adjusted and incredibly happy, many people wonder what your secret to life is.

You are friendly, charming, and warm. You get along with almost everyone.
You work hard not to rock the boat. Your easy going attitude brings people together.
At times, you can be a little flaky and irresponsible. But for the important things, you pull it together.

Don't you just love these? ;o)

This one is disturbingly correct, in a strange way.  I've been all of these things throughout my life, and hopefully have grown through and past the bit about aggressiveness, and was never one for jealousy.  What I'd like to know is how they came up with things like this, when my name is so unusual . . .

Friday, February 20, 2009

Decisions, Decisions.

If you had $33 in Amazon certificates, which would you choose, and why?

Yes, these are the trials of prosperity.  That being the case, do chime in. :o)

Banana Cream Pie Smoothie

I had to post this so I wouldn't forget it:
  • 3 small bananas (or 2 large)  Make sure they're really ripe, with some brown speckles on them (or at LEAST no sign of green anywhere).  Ripe bananas make all the difference! 
  • 2 ripe pears (Bosc are my favorite, they're still in season kinda/sorta, and they thicken this like pudding).
  • 3 Cuties (those easy-peel manadarin/clementine oranges).  You could probably substitute one regualr orange if you don't have these.
  • 1 one-hand handful of almonds
  • 2 Tablespoon scoops of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 40 drops Stevita liquid stevia (or about 30-35 drops KAL or Sweet Leaf liquid)
  • ~1 C. rice milk (optional)
  • 6-8 ice cubes (made with filtered water)

I put all of the above (minus peels! lol) in the Vita-Mix, and then add water until the water line is about 3/4 of the way to the top.  Walk it up to high and blend until creamy and smooth (less than a minute, but it seems like a long time when it's going that fast!).

My older daughter, the pickiest smoothie drinker ever, says this is better than her favorite pink smoothies, which is seriously high praise!

These could also be made in a regular blender--it would just take a little more careful blending order and longer blending time.

Have a great Friday!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

It is happening here.

Jenni asked what the big deal was that I spoke of in an earlier post.  Long story short, there was a law passed, called the CPSIA (Children's Product Safety Improvement Act), monstrously voluminous and wide-sweeping.  It was passed quickly (too quickly for most congressfolk or senators to actually read it), and affects everyone and everything, basically. 

Read this, for example.  

And please tell me if you see a substantive difference between burning books and quietly forcing them to be hauled to a dumpter.  I can't see one, and it's chilling.

(Please do go on and read the comments.  There's more info down there . . . )

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Please Bear With Me

I started fiddling with the template, and it's downright ugly right now.  Hope to have it fixed soon.  Please don't be frightened! ;o)

To stave off boredom for you, I did put something new in the sidebar . . .