Monday, November 23, 2009

Just In Case You've Wondered...

I have not dropped off the face of the blogosphere. My internet situation is still limited and my free time has become even more limited than ever! And, I'm still learning to "deal" with the drama that my family just can't seem to do without.

Here's where I am, in list form:

1. Preparing for Thanksgiving...12 adults 9 kids

2. I'm thinking, "what was I thinking?"

3. My rolls are baked and in the freezer

4. I'm making my cranberry sauce tomorrow

5. Tom the turkey is defrosting in the fridge

6. I'll make pies on Wednesday evening...after work

7. I'm trying to think up a chocolate dessert to take to Dan's uncle's house on Saturday...

8. I'm in the process of reupholstering this dining room chair I bought at a thrift store for $5 today. I spent my whole morning removing the old chair cover...I think there was horse hair in there...not sure, but it was old! I love the needs a new seat though. Maybe I'll post a picture tomorrow...yeah right! Maybe next month!

I love "Thanksgiving Saturday." Dan's uncle always has us over the saturday after Thanksgiving and I just love's a great time of fellowship with Dan's family and all the kids get to be together. I get to have Thanksgiving dinner without any of the work that goes with's just a good time.

Here are some pics from the last month...


Monday, October 26, 2009

All I Can Do is Laugh!

Life has been quite busy around here. Dan had surgery on both of his shoulders 3 weeks ago, the twins are moving full steam ahead in Kindergarten, I'm pluggin' along with my 2 full-time jobs at home and my part-time job as a Dental Hygienist, and... the saga with my extended family continues.

I've tried to remove myself from the whole situation, and I've done a pretty good job of removing myself physically, but emotionally...well, how does one not think about such a situation? I try to pray about it instead of worry about it or become angry about it, but, well, what can I say? I'm an imperfect human. I'm really just very blue about all of this. Especially because the holidays are fast approaching and my sister won't talk to me and my parents are upset with me because I haven't taken my sister's side in all of this. Let's all say it together, "DYSFUNCTION!"

The lighter side? This could relieve much of the holiday stress that I usually have to face. I won't have to referee at the dinner table, or facilitate small talk. This could be good.

On a brighter note, Adam & Katie are just taking off in Kindergarten! They are like little sponges soaking up all the fundamentals of reading and math, and science. It is so exciting to see them learning so much and so quickly.

Sophie goes to Noni & Bomas' house for a 2-day sleepover every week. She's being are they! They've never had the experience of having just one grandchild at a time. I think they really look forward to Sophie's weekly visit. It will be sad for them when she goes to preschool next fall.

Dan is doing well with his recovery, although his range of motion is very limited right now. He goes to physical therapy once a week and should be getting back to normal in the upcoming months.

Well, that's all I have to say about that. Life! What a journey! I'm looking forward to the destination!

Friday, October 16, 2009


Monday was Picture Day at school, so I took an opportunity to click my own pics before sending Adam & Katie on their way. I have to say, these are some stinkin' cute kids! They struck their own poses for these the school pics come back with dorky smiles.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

You'll Find a Gift in the Present!

How many times have you been so riddled with anxiety you couldn't think straight? I've been down that road more times than I care to admit. The best way to describe the root of anxiety is "the mind going in 2 or more directions at once."

What does that look like? Well, that often times looks like our daily life. We have kids that need to be fed, laundry, dishes, cooking, shopping, occasional bathing ;). The problem is, there is constantly "one more thing" to do before we can "relax."

How do we fix this? First, we recognize that what we're feeling is in fact anxiety. Then we identify the different "directions" in which we're being pulled. Then, STOP! SLOW DOWN to a snail's pace. Come into the "present." Make an effort to stop will find peace, and comfort there. You will also find God there!

The best way to become "present-minded" is to go out into nature. Nature is very present; it cannot help but be present. Watch the ind blow through the trees and consider the source of the wind. Watch a bee collect pollen from a flower. Watch the can never, not find ants here in sunny Florida. You will find that for just a brief moment you won't be thinking about anything but what you're seeing...everything pressing will melt away. This is the gift of the present.

I have realized God resides in the present! A lot of times we get stuck in the past...past hurts, pat hang ups, past habits. The past is a dangerous place for Christians to hang out. Reminiscing about past hurts just brings about anger, pain, and judgement. We have to remember, "there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ."

Even more often, we have a tendency to be future-minded. "I'll be happy when..." Or, I'm worried about this, this, and this. I've learned a valuable lesson about living in the future. First of all, as I said before, God resides in the present, not the past, not the future. Worrying about what's going to happen later today, tomorrow, or at the end of the week or month is not only anxiety-provoking, but it's ungodly. The Bible says,

"Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God
what you need and thank Him for all he has done. Then you
will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can
understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in
Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7

So, stop reliving the past, stop trying to control the future, and start living here and the present.

Monday, September 28, 2009

I See a Potential for Needing Bigger Jeans!

The bread...awesome! It's so easy to make that I could easily bake (and eat) a loaf a day. The problem is not with the bread as much as it is with the buttah. (for those of you who don't get the New York Jewish accent, that's butter) I love a nice chewy, fresh-baked bread with a glob of buttah on top!

Here's the photo play-by-play of the No Knead, Dutch Oven, Crusty Bread..............

The Rising Dough...looks like a science project...oooh bubbles! Add Image

The Risen dough...I used 1/3 whole wheat flour for this loaf and dusted the top with wheat bran (because I just happened to have wheat bran in my pantry for one of Dan's many diets :-)

This is my Romertopf clay oven. It was a wedding gift (that I registered for, I can't imagine why). I used it once, 10 years ago. I baked a chicken in it. I must not have been impressed because I haven't used it since. Until today...I've used it twice today to bake my bread. I don't have a heavy dutch oven, but I do have this and I have to say, it's like having bread baked in a brick oven. Outstanding! I can't remember who gave this to us but I'm so glad they did!

The End Product...

which all 3 kids, and my beloved loved!

Look at those holes! This bread looks like it came from some centuries-old family run french bakery in Paris.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I Might As Well Face It...I'm Addicted to Bread!

I've never been a big "sandwich" bread person, nor have I been one who requires bread with every meal. However, I've discovered the "medicinal" effects of bread. A nice crusty loaf from Panera with some above-average sweet cream makes everything better! Well, almost everything. But, at $2.45 a baguette. and the trek to Panera...I needed to rethink my new "medication."

My friend Kris told me about a bread recipe that is very easy and turns out a nice loaf of artisinal bread. The bread doesn't require any kneading. Huh? Bread that doesn't require making a huge mess of flour all over the counter? This can't work. If it does, it can't be bakery-quality. I had a chance to try the bread recently and it truly was bakery-quality. A nice crust on the outside, a good hearty chew on the inside. Check out the recipe at this link:

I haven't baked it myself dough is currently "resting" on the kitchen counter. I'll be baking tomorrow and I'll post the results...if I can get an internet signal.

Speaking of internet, there has been a crew of workers down the street for the past couple of weeks. They've installed additional telephone poles, I also saw that they've buried some kind of new lines. I have my fingers crossed that these lines are for DSL. One can only hope.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Coyote Hunting...

It's 7:30pm and I'm sitting in my upstairs room huntin' coyotes. It's a long story, but the short of it is that the coyotes ate 5 of our chickens last Sunday evening and we've been watching for them (with a loaded rifle by our side) ever since. I have to say that with all this family "stuff" that's been going on the past week I'm in the mood for shottin' somethin'. Not very Christ-like I suppose...what can I say, I'm a work in progress.

I haven't seen anything yet and I'm not too squimish about shooting one of those rotten animals...since they've eating about 2 dozen of my cickens over the past 4 years. I just hop that if I do get the opportunity to "take one out" I get a good shot and it's a quick and painless death...although I don't imagine my chickens' deaths were neither quick nor painless.

Ok, enough rambling. Ever seen that show from the '60s, Green Acres? Some days I feel like Ava Gabor. I never imagined I would be on a coyote stakeout, with rifle in hand. Good times!

Just Stay Out Of It...famous last words!

You have to read my last post to understand this one. The plot thickens...I'm trying to stay out of it, but I think the Lord has some things to say...which have all been encouraging, but not for my sister. I haven't been able to talk to her...she won't answer my calls. We all know the darkness hates the light for the light reveals what's hiding in the darkness, and there's shame in the darkness.

I have some kind of genetic defect that causes me to want to fix all things that cause anxiety for me because I think that by fixing the problem the anxiety will disappear...but, when can we ever fix someone else's problems? NEVER! I know this and still I forget to remember it.

Thanks to a wonderful workshop at church this past weekend, I am encouraged about my walk with the Lord. I feel confident in who I am in Him. I am reminded to TALK TO HIM about all of this rather than myself. I just need to do some spiritual "vomiting." Those of you who were at the workshop know what that means...those of you who weren't, check out this link: and on the left, click on Freedom Workshop and download it to your computer or Mp3 and listen to will change your life!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Head First Into Dark & Murky Waters

What better for my 100th post than to tell everyone...I've done it again. I jumped into the pool, with very little skills to save the person I'm trying to save. Where do I begin? First of all, God has given me the gift of compassion...I'm still trying to figure out the "gift" in this gift, because gifts are supposed to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Mine doesn't. I often times find myself filled with tremendous anxiety because I am so filled with compassion for someone that I want to fix whatever their problem is and we all know...we can't fix anything.

So, my sister has seemingly (only my observation) decided that she wants to live the life of a single 23-year-old. Which is fine, except she's not single and she has a 6-year-old child. There are a lot of details which I won't bore you with, but the biggest and most devastating detail is that she has ended a long-term relationship with the father of her child, and he is just devastated.

I'm rootin' for the underdog here. I'm so upset with this whole situation. I'm struggling with the "active love" in this. She has a few single girls that are not being a good influence on her right now and the only voice she hears is theirs.

Larry would tell me not to get pulled in...well, I didn't get pulled in, I jumped in. Head first! Lord, help me...and her.

The Lord has blessed me with a bold voice to comfort my brother-in-law and counsel him in making decisions that will benefit him. See, I talk a good talk. I'm learning to walk the walk.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Little Manic Redecorating...

I decided awhile back that Adam needed to be in his own room. So...much to my sentimental-sadness, I separated Adam & Katie. I moved Sophie into Katie's room and Adam into Sophie's room. Yeah, well...that didn't work out. Bedtime was brutal with the two girls together. So, I decided to move Sophie into the playroom, which used to be Adam & Katie's room before May of this year. Yeah...I've had ongoing children's bedroom issues for a year now.

Last year at this time I decided to paint Adam & Katie's room yellow, a nice non-gender-specific yellow. The one mistake I made...sending Dan to the paint store to buy that perfect shade of yellow. When I was finished painting, the room looked like a bottle of French's mustard exploded all over the walls. I dealt with that for about 6 months, then I decided to move Adam & Katie out of that room.

So, now I've had to revisit that "Frenchy" room. Last Friday I decided I just had to paint that room so I could get Sophie out of Katie's room ASAP. Well, the first step was to paint the whole room with primer so the pink paint didn't turn orange on top of that yellow. 8 hours later...the room was two lovely shades of pink...much to Dan's obvious, and stated disgust when he walked in from work.

So, I have Sophie's room almost put together, just a few more accessories... :) Adam's room is complete, except that I need to find a dark wood headboard for his bed. Now, Katie...poor, poor Eyore, I mean Katie. Now Katie is very upset that everyone has a "new" room but her. I had every intention to "create" a lovely little-girl room for her, but...I've run out of steam. I know that if I don't want to jade her for life (as I myself have been jaded by my own mother's lack of enthusiasm for pretty decor) I have absolutely got to get myself re-motivated to decorate her room! Katie like to have something to complain "poor me" about...that's why I've nick-named her Eyore! So I guess I can let it go till next week. I've been a little under the weather the past couple of days so I need to let my body rest.

Well, I'm off to visit my local Home Cheapo, Habitat for Humanity thrift store, and a few other places to complete these projects. I hope everyone has a great day!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Crazy Busyness!

Look at how much taller Katie is than Adam! Maybe by the end of the school year Adam will have caught up to her a bit...I hope! Although Adam is "average" for his age. Katie is in the 90th percentile for height! WMBA here we come...only if Katie could walk a straight line :)

Ok, I really thought that once Adam & Katie got off to school that I would have "time" to get "caught up." Yeah, not. so. much. It's been two weeks...My internet is hit or miss...the only options I have for internet are 1. dial up and 2. satellite...which is only twice as good as dial up and mucho dinero. I'm waiting for Comcast to do a "serviceability" check for me to see if they will run their cable up our road...oh, the joy of country living!

The kids' first two weeks of school have been great for them. They don't complain. Well, Adam does when it's time to practice writing...doing homework with that kid is B-R-U-T-A-L! It's so sweet to drop them at school and watch them hold hands and walk in together!
They are in separate classrooms, but just next door to one another. The only bad thing about being in separate classrooms is that the rewards from each teacher are different. One day Adam will come home with candy and Katie will freak out. The next day Katie comes home with candy and Adam freaks out. A good lesson in graciousness...although they aren't really gettin' it!
I have been absolutely inundated with form after stinkin' form every day for the past two weeks! I realized that I, now have homework. Wait a minute. I thought I finished school. What's happening to my ideals?

Anyway, I better wrap up before the internet fairy cuts my connection.

Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Been A While...

Where does the time go? I began the summer with a whole list of "fun" things to do with the kids...that list has very few check marks on it. I don't know where the time went. But, I do have a list of what we did this goes like this:

1. I went to NYC, called home from La Guardia Airport to let Dan know my Orlando-bound plane was delayed. He proceeded to tell me that he and Katie just got back from the ER. She fell and possibly broke her wrist. Nice. I got in at 2:00am. Called the Orthopedic doc at 8:00am and spent the afternoon in the doc's office only to learn it was just a sprain...thank God.

2. Took all 3 kids to the myself! I must have had a moment of temporary insanity to think that this would be fun and relaxing. Fun, yes for the kids...not even remotely relaxing for me. What was I thinkin'?

3. We decided to save $ this summer, so both sets of grandparents "switched off" with babysitting on the days that I worked. One week my mom came to our house, the next week the kids spent the night at Dan's parents' house. Those weeks that the kids spent away...pure bliss...a little hard to adjust to the silence and the sleep at first, but that didn't take too long! I'm kinda sad summer's more "me" time every other week.

4. Orthopedic Incident #2 - Adam tripped over something on the floor in his room when he was supposed to be in bed...2 lessons here - put things where they belong, and go to bed when Mom says. Anyway, the foot doubled in size and the kid limped for 2 days. Having learned the signs and symptoms of a sprain from Katie's ordeal earlier in the summer, I wrapped his foot in an Ace bandage, made him do Epsom Salt soaks, and waited for it to get better. It did, then Katie stepped on the foot and it got worse. Made another trip to see the Orthopedic doc. 4 x-rays's just a sprain, he's too little for crutches or just "keeping his foot up" so the doc recommended a good pair of running shoes to support his little foot...I never thought I'd do it, but I went out and bought my 5-year-old son a pair of Nike shoes. Many $$'s later, the foot's better.

5. After much ado...which included zone waivers, waiting periods, physicals, shot records, registration appointments, blah, blah, blah.............Adam & Katie got registered for Kindergarten! Again, where does the time go?

6. We went on a "Staycation" this past weekend. That's kind of like a fake vacation. We went to the beach for a night. Cocoa beach. One of my least favorite beaches...not sure how we ended up there. We spent Friday on the beach, slept over, and woke up the next morning, checked out and went to one of my favorite beaches, Playa Linda. A much more beautiful beach, with much better waves than Cocoa.

7. Orthopedic Incident #3...Dan was body surfing at Playa Linda Beach, got hit by a huge wave, and has had constant, unbearable, uncontrollable pain radiating from his right arm, with numbness in the fingers of his right hand. So, I made yet another call to the orthopedic doc. Dan is going to see him today.

8. Adam & Katie will meet their Kindergarten teachers on Thursday and school will start 1 week from today. Good Times!

I'm hoping to have one last week of fun with my sweet babies. My goal is to just really keep my focus on them this week. I have the rest of my life to clean the house and do the laundry. This is the only "1 week before they start Kindergarten" I'll ever have!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Whole New Meaning To Getting Your Mouth Washed Out

Katie is the "toothbrush girl" most nights. I usually ask her if she would help me get everyone's toothbrush ready with toothpaste. Last night she handed Adam's toothbrush to him (probably with a sheepish grin on her face, too bad I wasn't lookin') and he started brushing when in midbrush he exclaimed, "yuck! this isn't toothpaste Katie, this is soap!" "Katie why did you put soap on my toothpaste?!"

I could not keep a straight face. I was investigating the situation, asking Katie if she put soap on the brush, etc... Dan was crackin' up, I was trying to be a "good" mother and get to the bottom of this little act of, shall I call it wickedness?

I have to admit, Adam has had a fresh mouth lately, and not minty fresh, so I was thinkin' he could use a little "wash out." Whatever possessed Katie...I don't know, but she really got him good. What can I say? I just told her not to put soap on Adam's toothbrush again or I'd put soap on hers.

Dan said that she probably gets this practical joking from me; he reminded me of the time I put topical anesthetic on his toothbrush and his lips went numb as he was brushing...that memory still sends me into a fit of uncontrollable laughter!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Now, That's Just Wrong

So, I had to have a "talk" with Sophie the other night about boogers. You see, Sophie picks and licks... I know, YUCK! Anyway, the other night she showed an interest in lickin' what someone else had picked...EWWWW! I never imagined that I would have to have a talk with one of my children that went like this:

Me: Sophie, NO! It's really disgusting to eat your own boogers, it's especially
disgusting to eat another person's.

Sophie: I like it.

Me: Sophie, do you understand mommy? You can only eat your boogers,
no other person's boogers.

Ok, this gets a real big, OH. MY. It's only just begun. What else? She's so stinkin' cute, but not. so. much. when she has her finger second-knuckle-deep in her nostril!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Don't Ya' Just Hate It When...

Yesterday I took the kids to the beach. The beach that is almost 2 hours away from our house. Yep! That's right. Me, in the car with my 3 kids for almost a total of 4 hours. It actually wasn't that bad. Did I just say that? Hmmmm. Maybe I'm getting accustomed to this whole selfless-mother thing. Nah!!! Just happened to have a relatively stable mental state yesterday.

Well, after lots of fun in the sun, (I'll post pics another time) I dropped the kids at their grandparents house, Noni & Bomas are babysitting for the next couple of days while I'm working. Then on the way home I decided to stop by the Marble Slab Creamery for a little sweet treat. I swear they pipe something through the ventilation system there that makes their waffle cones seem irresistible...I had one, it aint all that!

So, I'm driving in the car eating my double dark chocolate ice cream in the overrated "homemade" waffle cone, and about 2/3 of the way through my cone I notice a long, green, fuzz-like thread in my ice cream. UHHHGGG! Oh. My. Stinkin'. Word! Did I mention that the ice cream cone cost me $6? Yes, a $6 ice cream cone with some kind of weird green fuzz in the ice cream. Well, I wasn't about to throw my $6 ice cream cone away soooooooooo...

I pulled the weird green fuzz out and kept right on eating... It really wasn't that good, it's just that I paid $6!!! Sometimes I can be way too self indulgent, but to rationalize... a frappucino from Starbucks almost costs that much!

Anyway, the moral of the story is this... Don't pay $6 for an ice cream cone. I probably would have had a more satisfying experience with a fake-chocolate-dipped cone from DQ. Just Sayin'

Monday, July 20, 2009


Look at these adorable kids!!!

My kids CRACK me up! Sophie always wants to play rock, paper, scissors. So she goes, "wok, paypo, paypo, shoot!" (she forgets the scissors) and immediately says, "ha, ha, I win!" She thinks scissors wins every time so she always chooses scissors. Well, if I play with her I know she's gonna pick scissors, so I pick rock and I then say, "ha ha, I win!" To which Sophie responds by throwing a massive temper tantrum on the floor, screaming "I don't want to be the loser! I'm supposed to be the winner!" Oh. My. She's 3! I wonder how many times I have that same tantrum in my own head on any given day...and I'm almost 30 years older than her.
I guess it's about 5 weeks until Adam & Katie start Kindergarten. Bittersweet! What ever will I do with myself? Rhetorical question of course... As if there will ever be a time in the next 50 years of my life that... you get the picture.
I wish my kids would go to a school with mandatory school uniforms. Imagine that, no arguments about what we're going to wear. A girl can dream can't she?

Monday, July 13, 2009

5 Things I've Learned From Larry...

Larry is a Truth Counselor. Truth meaning the truth of our significance in Christ. That truth is this: "Lord, you have examined me and know all about me..." Psalm 139:1 And He still loves me! If the Creator of the world, who knows all the wickedness of my human heart can love me, then does it really matter whether I fail or succeed according to the "World's" standards?


The truth is that I was created even before the foundation of the World! Doesn't that make me superior in God's opinion? And isn't His opinion the only opinion that matters?


Truth # 1: Lean into the truth...ask yourself, "what is the truth?" The only truth in our life is the truth of God's love, and God's commands, and God's expectations.

Truth # 2: Just Say No! Say "No" to self-talk. Don't listen to the conversation in your head...if it's not the Lord's voice you're hearing, the conversation should be abruptly halted! No "re-hashing" or "rehearsing" - just say to yourself, "I'm not talking to you about this anymore!" That also goes for talking with someone else (maybe family, friend, or foe) who may be talking about someone or something that is not Godly or edifying. Just say, "I'm not going to talk about this..."

Truth # 3: The ultimate goal of our walk with the Lord is that we would be transformed into His image (Romans 8:29)... and that does not come without suffering. We will suffer, because Christ suffered. But God allows our suffering and uses it to draw us closer to Him. So, instead of asking, "God, why are you doing this to me?" Ask, "Lord, what would you have me to learn from this? May you use this suffering to put your glory on display."

Truth # 4: Pain consumes Pain. This truth concerns those people in our life that cause us pain. Most of us "normal" people have someone in our life that causes us pain, either through words or actions. It is very hard to be Christ-like toward such a person. But, I have learned that the people who create pain, are themselves in a great deal of pain. Pain consumes pain. Pain needs pain to continue on its path of destruction. So, in knowing that truth, we can be liberated from wanting to "punish" those who "punish" us because, first of all there are no "paybacks" in Christ, and second of all, we can pray for those people. I have found it's very difficult to be angry with someone who is hurting. Prayer transforms...

Truth # 5: Don't jump into the pool! One of greatest truths I've learned... Let me set the stage. Someone is drowning in a pool, what happens if you jump in to help them? Whether it's your mother or your child, they will always pull you down to save themselves, always! So, unless you're a VERY strong swimmer, who's had a lot of training, you don't jump into the pool. You stand along the edge and do everything you can to help from the outside.

Basically, try not to get involved with things that you really are not equipped to fix. You are more helpful in those situations through prayer. So, for instance your mom calls to complain about your father or your brother, try not to jump into the "pool" with her. Try to change the subject, or tell her you'll pray about the situation. Do whatever you can to stay out of it and keep yourself accountable to God.

All of these truths go hand in hand, and they work for me when I remember to "lean into them."

Just a little Spiritual Food for thought today...

Friday, July 3, 2009

A Better Day

No ranting today...My sister is going through some personal crises right now and I'm the safest person for her to lash out at because I typically just swallow it down without retaliation. I'm trying to reach out to her, but she has this belief that I'm judging her and I think I'm superior to her. Neither is true, but the enemy is working hard. I'm praying for my sister. Mainly that she would walk in His truth and learn not to listen to the enemy's lies. That she would see that I love her and I want what's best for her. That I want to help her attain her goals, but that success doesn't come easily, nor does it come without major sacrifices.

On a lighter note, I had a great day at work yesterday. My boss gave me a bonus at the end of the day. Occasionally he just hands me some cash and says, "here you go, have fun." It's so refreshing to be appreciated...and monetarily at that! I'm so blessed by my job.

Now, I have to get my housework done so I can have some fun. I'm not sure what I'll do today. Maybe take the kids somewhere so they can work off some of their excessive energy. I hope everyone has a very happy 4th of July! Be safe!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

A Rant...

My little sister doesn't like me very much. I know this, beacuse she says so. I'm not sure why. Isn't that sad? My only sibling. All I know is that she's my sister and I love her. Yes, we are different. Yes, we are in different places in our lives. Yes, I've not always been kind to her...she's almost 10 years younger than me and she cramped my style. But, when all is said and done I LOVE my sister. I try to walk in the Spirit and not be judgemental, and I try to show her unconditional love. Though, I do admit that I sometimes fail...what can I say, I'm human. Thanks for listening/reading...just had to rant for a minute to clear my brain of this frustration.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

It's So Quiet I could Hear A Pin Drop!

Dan & I decided to save money on daycare during the summer so we're shipping the kids off to the grandparent's house on the 2 days that I work. It will save us roughly $560 a month. Yes, you read right I pay $560 a month for 8 days of childcare. Any takers?

Anyway, I digress. I worked today until 3:00pm, came home fixed myself a combo of lunch and dinner since I don't have a break for lunch on Wednesdays. I ate, I watched a little television, what? The house is silent. My belly is full. It's 6:45. Too early for bed, although don't think I didn't consider it. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, I LOVE to be alone. I love to be with my husband and kids, but you know, too much of a good thing...

I think I'll eat some ice cream and read a book.

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Sweet Retreat

I had a fabulous time in New York. The company was great, the food was awesome, and the sights were incredible. Dan's cousin, Homa is just like our darling Katie...very artsy, creative, and wandering about in her own little world. She is such an amazing person! She really showed me a great time. She took me to Magnolia Bakery in Manhattan, because she knows I have an affinity toward all things sweet. Yum! We sat in the bakery eating cake and playing an African game called Bao. Bao is an interesting game Homa brought back from a recent trip to Africa. It's a game of skill and logic and involves these big, hard seeds that I believe were retrieved from some large animal's dung. Just sayin'
This is me and Homa. Behind us is Union Square, I think. I can't really remember. All I remember is that we went to Max Brenner's chocolate shop which was across the street. If you can believe this, I wasn't in the mood for dessert because we had a big brunch earlier in the day. I did however have a big glass of the best chocolate milk EVER!
We took a short road trip to DC one day. Well, it would have been short except that Homa borrowed a friend's car - a big diesel Mercedes Benz that averaged about 50mph the whole trip. Brutal! But the company was good, and when we got back to New York, Homa treated me to a 45 minute massage at this little Asian massage parlor. Very nice!

We went to the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan. This is a self portrait by Frida Khalo on the left and me looking through a mirror on the right.
The art museum inspired some creativity in us. Katie's only request from New York City was a painting from Homa. Her request specifically, a picture of Katie and Homa in a flower garden. This is Homa painting Katie's picture. I also did a little portrait of my own.

We went into St. Patrick's Cathedral, prayed, and lit a candle.

I had a little time alone and I spent some time in China Town, and I visited the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. I had lunch at Chelsea Market, which is where the Food Network Studios are. I had the BEST clam chowder, fresh bread, and farm fresh milk and butter at Chelsea Market! I was completely in my element, the only thing missing was my Danny. He would have loved it!
I obviously had a fantastic time. I saw most of the things I wanted to see. I had a great time bonding with Homa. I got to do the Museum of American History in DC. And, I had lots of time for renewal of my mind. I had a great 45 minute walk in DC when I just allowed myself to be aware of my surroundings...not the people, but the nature. The flowers, trees, and natural wonders that often go unnoticed in my chaotic life. I was walking along and saw a fat squirrel. I stopped to take a picture of him and he came right up to me. I remembered that I had a little piece of bread in my purse and the squirrel took it right out of my hand. The lesson: there may be times in our lives when we think we have nothing to offer, but if we dig deep enough we can usually find something that we can offer and that will be a blessing.
A big thanks to Dan who made this all possible for he knows that my days don't consist of bon bons and soap operas.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Start Spreadin' The News...

I, thanks to my wonderful, generous, sacrificial husband, am leaving for a 5 day vacation to New York City on Friday! Yes, just me! I feel a little guilty, but I'm sure I'll get over it. Dan's cousin lives in Brooklyn and we're gonna have a "girl's week out." She's currently not working, so I'll have her all to myself and I know she's going to show me a fabulous time around town.

We went to see her last summer. We only got to spend about 3 days with her and we had the kids. We did a whole lot, but not enough for me. I absolutely loved it there. Maybe it's the foodie in me, but I feel a gravitational pull to that city. It amazes me that that you can walk a Check Spellingblock away from home for breakfast in the morning. I love it!

I am so looking forward to this break from the constant chaos which is my life...don't get me wrong, it's good chaos, but momma needs a break and I am so very blessed that Dan has given me his blessing to do this for myself! I really am blessed in that he wants to see me happy and enjoying my life. He never robs me of my thunder. You're awesome Dan, and I owe you a getaway too. You deserve it.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Go Mommy, Go!

Yesterday, after a long couple of days of work, and an even longer few days of FUNK, I was driving home with the kids in the backseat. They were being their usual rambunctious selves - which usually creates major anxiety in me (yeah, a genetic flaw I think), but this time they decided we were in a race to beat daddy home from work so they all began to chant "go mommy, go!" It was so sweet because Adam & Katie were in unison chanting "go mommy, go" and Sophie was saying, "doe mommy, doe. doe mommy, doe!" She can't say the "g" sound yet. So cute!
It's moments like this that help us step outside of the circle of chaos, which seems to be the driving force our lives, and really be thankful for the "season" of life we are in. This made me realize that it won't be long before Sophie can pronounce the "g" sound, and all that baby cuteness will be replaced with some other interesting personality trait.
I was helping Adam get dressed for school this morning, they have pre-k graduation today (give me break!) and I was dressing him in slacks, a shirt, and tie. I sat on the edge of his bed helping him put his socks and shoes on, and it occurred to me that if what everyone tells me is true, it will be a blink of an eye and I'll be helping him get ready for his high school graduation. I can't even imagine...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

She Left, He Arrived

Yeah, so Aunt Creativity left on Friday and Uncle Funk arrived on Saturday. Which made for a really crappy weekend I must say. I think Uncle Funk is heading out in the next couple of days. I would really welcome a visit from Susie Homemaker...she would clean my house and fix a real good meal for my family.

Now that I have everyone thoroughly convinced that I have multiple personalities, I think I'll go buy an icecream...I'm sure one of my personalities will enjoy it.

p.s. if/when my husband reads or hears about this post he's really gonna freak out...he's suspected for quite some time I have multiple personalities. I really don't...I'm just moody. LetHe or She without moodiness cast the first stone. I dare you!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Creative Mania

I'm feeling a creative mania coming on. I occasionally get these feelings of "I HAVE to do something creative right NOW. Yesterday I made hairbows. It was a good outlet, BUT not enough...I'm really feeling like knitting something, but my attention span lately has been that of a fruit fly. I'm not sure the concentration is there to knit a big project. I guess I could do something small, but again, not sure that will cut through my mania. What to do? As for now, I'm off to work...the "real" job, the one I actually get paid to do, and people actually appreciate my efforts. Imagine that!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Seussical Party Experience

Adam & Katie had a birthday party this past weekend. I thought it would be fun to have a Dr. Seuss-inspired party. If I had left the decision up to the kids they would have preferred a SpongeBob party, but I'M THE BOSS around here when it comes to parties and I made an executive decision to do Dr. Seuss. It was fun...we had a reading of "The Lorax" and the kids decorated flower pots and then planted a flower seed. We had cotton candy to represent the tufts of the Truffula trees. I made the most hideous birthday cake ever...

Not quite the vision I had in my head, but it was good practice at not being perfect. I must admit, there was a fleeting moment when I said to myself, "just 'accidentally' drop it on the floor and you'll have an excuse to start over." I resisted the temptation and presented less-than-perfect cake for all to see.

The kids had a great time! So did daddy and grandpa...making the cotton candy.

Happy 5th Birthday Adam & Katie!

On May 26, 2004 we welcomed Adam & Katie into our lives. Words cannot even express how these two little ones have blessed us! Today, we celebrate the 5th anniversary of their birth. What an AMAZING 5 years we've had! It was quite rocky at first, but I think we've finally gotten the hang of it. They are incredible little people. Adam is so affectionate and tender-hearted, with an incredible memory. Katie is compassionate, nurturing, generous, and very artistic.

We are so blessed to have these two angels in our lives! We look forward to all that they will become. Our greatest hope is that they would walk in the Truth, that they would know God, and that God would use them, with all their talents, for His glory!

Happy Birthday Sweet Babies!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Random Thoughts

I'm planning a small Birthday party for the twins. I told them that in addition to their cousins they could each choose 1 friend to invite. Katie chose one of her girlfriends, and Adam also chose one of his girlfriends. He has this little girl in his class that is his best friend. It's sweet. I wish there were more boys in our circle boy hangs around with way too many girls.

I'm planning a Dr. Seuss inspired party since the kids have been in preschool this year and will be learning to read very soon. I also thought it was an easy, non-gender-specific theme for a party. I'm trying to figure cute, Dr. Seuss inspired food...hhhmmmm

This means I have to get into the mode of "cleaning the house for company." I hate that! Who cares if there are 3 pairs of handprints all over the sliders, and there seems to be something in every corner of the house? I'm going to toss every unnecessary "thing" in this house. Danny boy, watch out! (I'm not going to toss him, of course, he's necessary. I love my honey bunny. I'm going to toss his crap - pardon my unlady-like language).

Friday, May 8, 2009

I Don't Mean To Sound Ungrateful, But...

I wish I only had a 1600 sq ft house! Friday mornings are a bit overwhelming for me as far as the housework goes. I work on Wed. & Thurs. which means everything pertaining to keeping my home in order lies in a state of limbo. I know if my house were smaller it would get more messy faster, although I think we're Guinness Book messy around here so I'm not sure it could get any messier any faster. But, if the house was smaller I could get it cleaned up faster. I'm just sayin'...

I'm seriously courting the idea of hiring a cleaning lady to come every other Thursday so I can walk into a Pine Sol-fresh house (that didn't require any of my own Pine Sol) a couple of times a month. But then, I'll basically be working to pay the preschool and the cleaning lady, hmmmm. Well, I could look at it as I'll be coming home to a clean house that I didn't have to clean, & I had a couple of days away from the mundane. Six of one, half dozen of another I suppose.

I guess I can't delay the inevitable any longer...I have a metric ton of laundry, a sticky kitchen floor, a play room where the carpet is not visible through the toys - which by the way is going bye-bye, I could go on, but you all know where this is going. Hopefully I'll get all my ducks in a row in the next 2 hours...yeah right!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Picture Day!

I absolutely loathe taking my 3 little darlings to the photo studio. They NEVER sit well together. They wiggle. They try to run away. There is not a threat or a bribe that works in my favor. I leave the studio feeling seriously frustrated and in need of some sort of mood-elevating medication.

This is why... don't you love the finger up the nose? Yeah well it's not so funny to me today. Maybe it's one of those things I'll look back at and laugh.

Well, today I awoke with the great idea to go to the photo studio for our annual picture-taking experience. Yes, history continues to repeat itself in this area of my life. Only this time I decided that we needed to have a family portrait taken since the last one we had was when Sophie was 4 months old. So, add a husband who also doesn't want to have his picture taken to the mix fun. fun.
As usual we got great individual poses of the kids, but a picture of the 3 together? Not. So. Much. UHHGGG!!! We did get a decent famil shot. It's not great. The photographer could have noticed my hair was crazy on one side and fixed it! hmmmph! I shouldn't complain because at least everyone is sitting, smiling, and in focus.
Then comes the "pick your favorite poses" part of the session. I can't make a quick decision about anything involving photos...that' why I don't scrapbook. So, I ended up spending WAY too much money, but I only do this once a year and I do have 3 kids...can you tell I'm trying to make myself feel better about spending too much? I'm also giving the pics as Mother's Day gifts, so... I could go on and on.
Anyway, look at my beautiful family.

Oh yeah! Sophie loves pictures. Can't you tell? She is the only one of my kids who has ALWAYS cried and flipped out at the photo studio.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Back to The Normal Life

Who am I foolin'? There's nothing remotely normal about my life. I put my Grandma & Grandpa on a plane to Kalamazoo, MI on Monday. It was bittersweet. I really enjoyed spending time with them...knowing that they would never make it back to Florida, but I was really busy having two more people in my house.

I think Dan gained 10 lbs in the past two weeks. We ate a whole lot of Midwestern comfort food. My grandparents could easily eat a loaf of bread and an entire stick of butter with every meal! On Sunday I made a traditional Czech meal of roast pork, bread dumplings with gravy, and Czech-style sauerkraut. My grandparents and my dad enjoyed it. Me, not. so. much.
This is my grandma...a beautiful lady...making Knedliky, Czech bread dumplings.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Happy 10th Anniversary Dan!

10 years ago today I married my best friend. A man who adored me, which is beyond my understanding. Looking back over the past 10 years I reflect on all that we've experienced together. My graduation from college, a trip to West Virginia for white water rafting, we built a house, we went to California and drove up the Pacific Coast Highway from L.A. to San Fransisco - one of the most beautiful experiences we've ever had together. We have welcomed 3 beautiful children into our life together - which is by far THE most beautiful experience we've had together. We've experienced grave illness when Dan's Dad had a massive heart attack 5 years ago. He's still with us and we are thankful for that. We've had friends come and go...some have gone to be with the Lord, and some we've just grown apart from. But, we're still here. Our marriage is a constant in our life that is influenced by so many variables.
With each new experience comes newer and sometimes greater responsibility which we all know makes marriage a challenge. I feel so blessed that after 10 years, and 3 kids, we can still laugh together and love one another. I love Dan for much deeper reasons than when we married 10 years ago. I love him for the way he (usually) understands me, for the father he is - I am so blessed that my girls have a daddy that loves them with all his being, I sometimes see him hugging them and I can see the energy surrounding them, it's magical. I love Dan for his knowledge - he's a smart guy! I love him for his caution, and his ability & willingness to analyze and research almost everything - even though it drives me crazy sometimes, I'm so glad he has the energy and the insight. I love him for keeping me in check and telling me to just let it go. For his constant reminders that I have the bar set too high and it's alright to lower my standards. Most of all, I love him because he sees something special in me that I have never been able to see in myself . Dan has taught me love. I've learned a lot, but I still have a lonnnggg way to go! I love Dan for his patience with me.
Looking forward...the next 10 years will bring even greater challenges and responsibilities. We'll have 3 teens in our house! I pray that we'll still have our parents in our lives, and that we'll all be healthy, safe, & sane!
Danny Jahn, my jigar I love you! It's been a wild ride and we haven't even reached the summit. I'm so glad I have you in my heart and by my side to keep it real! Hang on! I suspect the next 10 years are going to be pretty bumpy, but I think the best is yet to come.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

We Have To Work Fast Around Here!

My Grandma has been begging me to let her help me with the cooking. I keep refusing, insisting that I don't need help and I can get it done FAST! Yesterday I finally let her help me dice the onions for dinner. took every bit of inner strength not to snatch that onion away from her and do a Rachel Ray to it. My Grandma, bless her sweet little heart, diced that onion slice, by slice, by slice. The problem was that I needed that onion in order to move forward in my prep.

Today I wised up! I cut the onion and I gave her a bunch of carrots to peel and slice. See, I can accept help and still get things done quick.

I am enjoying having my grandparents here, although it's a lot of work. Don't get me wrong, these are two healthy elders, but they do both have diabetes, and take a slew of meds for blood pressure and high cholesterol...although they eat whatever they want whenever they want. I don't get it. Anyway, I digress. My grandpa came here with two meds that needed to be refilled, but her just brought the pills, without the bottles! So, I had to take the pills to the pharmacy and say, "um, I'm sure this isn't the first time, but..." Anyway, while I was standing in line to pick up the meds, I though to myself, "one of these days I'll be doing this for my parents." Hopefully not anytime soon - my kids need to grow up first.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

This Is Where I Am...

I've been off the radar for a couple of weeks it seems. First of all, my Internet connection has almost been non-existent as of late. By the time the blog loads, I have to leave it to do something else. Second, I've been trying to have a quiet time each day and that means no time for blogging. Third, I'm stinkin' exhausted. Fourth, my octogenarian grandparents are here visiting from Michigan, for TWO WEEKS! Did I mention I'm exhausted?

Funny thing, each time I send my Grandparents pics of the kids I invite them to come to Florida. I tell them I have plenty of room, would love to see them, etc... Well, out of the blue they called me last Friday, from the ticket counter at the airport, to tell me they would be flying in the following Monday. Oh. My.

Well, today is Monday. I've survived a week of near-diabetic-crises, "leaky" stools, sight impairment, and hearing loss. I'm glad they're here, it's wonderful to see them, but I can't help but wonder how they survive on their own? My Grandma wants to help with everything, what a sweet little lady! She's from Czechoslovakia. My Grandpa married her while on tour there during WWII. They've been married 63 years! It's so obvious they come from a different time. My Grandma wants to buy toilet paper to replace what they've used. Are you kidding me? They ate peanut butter sandwiches while I was at work on Wed. because they didn't want to "get into" the leftovers. I think I've finally convinced them that "Mi casa es su casa."

I'm enjoying sharing old stories with my Grandma. She's sharing things with me that I've not had the privilege of knowing. I'm a very sentimental soul and I love learning about my family's past, but usually nobody in my family is very willing to share.

My kids are having quite an experience with their Great-Grandparents too. I hope that they will have some fond memories of this time, as it may not come again.

Grandma & Grandpa at the park.

Grandma coleecting the eggs. She's just like a kid when she sees that there are eggs in the nests!

Sophie's Birthday

Last Sunday was Sophie's Birthday. The fact that it was also Easter complicated things for me. I wanted to have a party for Sophie, but it was Easter. I'd decided to postpone the party for a couple of weeks but then had an epiphany...Adam and Katie's Birthday is 6 weeks to the day after Sophie's Birthday. I realized the longer I postpone Sophie's Birthday the closer we are to the twins' Birthday. oh. my. So a last minute decision...I had a small family party for Sophie on Easter.

Sophie's arrival into our lives was bittersweet for us at first. The twins were 14 months old when I realized I was pregnant with Sophie. I questioned the Lord and His will for me. I had just experienced the toughest year of my life having had two babies at once and here I am pregnant again. How would I do it? How would I survive three months of morning sickness with two active toddlers? How would I take care of a newborn in the middle of the night when I had a toddler (Adam) who wouldn't sleep through the night?
It wasn't until she was born and the doctor exclaimed, "wow, she's a round one!" and the nurse called out her weight of 8 pounds that I knew everything was going to be okay. Since April 12, 2006 there has not been a single day of my life that I haven't thanked God for Sophie! She is such an incredible gift! Her smile lights up my life, her laughter tickles my spirit, and her love warms my heart. She's precious! Happy Birthday Sophie!

This is the Barbie cake my precious Sophie enthusiastically requested for her Birthday. I was adamant that I wasn't paying Publix $47.99 for their Barbie cake. So, I googled it, and made this myself. I have to say that this was one of the easier cakes I've made and I was thrilled will the results. So was my Sophie!

Here she is! The Birthday girl! Such a sweet little doll!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Maybe It's This Weather

I have had a serious case of the "blahs" for the past couple of days. I just can't seem to get my head together. I'm exhausted! I just want to take a 6 hour nap. I've been "staring" down a pile of laundry in my bathroom all week. By staring down I mean refusing to do it. I'm not letting that pile of laundry cause me any anxiety. I'll do it when I'm good and ready, frankly I'm not feelin' it right now!

Dan hasn't asked me why he has to maneuver around this massive pile of dirty clothes. He probably thinks I'm rebelling. He's right! I'm taking back my freedom. My freedom from having to have my hands on all things filthy for 18 out of the 24 hours in my day. What ya think about that?! Watch out!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Spring Is In The Air!

Yes indeed! I was enjoying a gentle breeze outside while the kids were playing, and I noticed that things had "greened up." I really just became aware that Spring is officially here. We have "real" shade for the first time since we'd built our house. Our property used to be an orange grove way back when... and we had no trees. When we built our house we had to plant several trees, well, we were mandated by the county to plant trees I should say. Those trees have finally grown into decent shade trees, it's a beautiful thing.

Our chickens are hatching chicks, which is such a beautiful and exciting springtime event as well.

And then there's the weeds. Yes, the weeds are back in full force. We will be overrun with weeds in the weeks to come. The yard needs our attention yet again. Our winter furlough has come to a screeching halt as the weeds begin to take over the flower and tree beds. Time to don the garden gloves and the pony tail, and get to pullin' weeds.

I have great plans for my "failing" rose garden. It will involve white picket fence and the removal of some nuisance hedges, soil enrichment, and plenty of my husband's elbow grease will be involved in these plans. Dan cringes at the thought of wasting time on any tree or plant that doesn't bear some sort of fruit. But, the flowers are my fruit...I better be careful what I write, if he reads this he may make me eat those roses.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Katie and Sophie are beginning to look a lot alike. They are both just so pretty! They really look angelic in this picture.
My three beautiful kids! They are growing up so fast!

This is Sophie dancing with her cousin Zoe at the wedding we went to in Miami. My girls were dancing all night! Katie didn't want to leave.