Friday, February 29, 2008

Wipeout!

Today was a beautiful day! This morning my friend Kara and I went for a walk around the Tom O'Leery loop which is a 2.2 mile trail. We went around the first time and Kara asked if I wanted to go again. We decided not to do the whole trail again, but turned around to walk part of the way around, then turned around to come back. Shortly after we turned around the first time, I hit a patch of ice and completely wiped out! There were many patches of ice around the whole trail, but for whatever reason, I didn't make it across this one. My feet went right out from under me and I landed right on my rump, which for me, is the best place to land. Kara was worried I hurt myself, which at the time, nothing was hurt but my pride. I wonder how many cars were driving by and had to do a double take as I wiped out. There was an older man jogging in our direction at the time and he didn't look at us or say a word. He was either in his "zone", or he couldn't see that far in front of him. I hope he didn't crash, because I'm sure he would have broken something. Later I decided my back was sore from the jarring, and I also started getting a headache. Not too long after that I had to call Scott to see if he could take me to the hospital because I couldn't get up from a sitting position. I'm totally pulling your leg Kara, I'm fine. Just wanted to see if I could get your blood pumping for the second time today! HA HA! We are supposed to have some great weather again tomorrow so I'm hoping we can get outside and do something. Gage has a Winter Fun Day planned with his Cub Scout pack and Emma has another birthday party to attend. She is quite the little social bug these days! Wishing you all nice-weathered weekend!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Dentist

Emma had a dentist appointment today and WOO HOO, NO CAVITIES! She brushed VERY well before we left. I told her to sing Happy Birthday 4 times while she brushed her teeth. While we were at the dentist's office, my Trac phone rang (nearly scared me to death Emily! :-) so I walked out into the waiting room to answer it. When I came back to the exam table Emma was on, they had just rinsed her teeth of the pink stuff they use to check and see how well she was brushing and I asked how she did. The hygienist was shocked that I didn't brush them for her! That was good to hear. After the appointment Emma had a play date with her friend Madelyn. I took my Cricut to show my friend Tonya (it was just as much of a play date for me as it was Emma!) I was upset when I discovered I forgot the power cord! Ugh!

Not a whole lot else went on today, except for some cranky children needing to go to bed early. Thursdays are always hard on Gage because he has hockey practice on Wednesday nights and he typically gets to bed later than normal. He was in complete meltdown right before supper. We got in his bed and started reading some Harry Potter to get by until supper was ready. That helped to get his mind off of whatever was causing his meltdown. He seems to think he needs a Nintendo DS. He is not getting a Nintendo DS. I have my old Nintendo Gameboy that I drug out of the closet for him to play with. He was having troubles playing Donkey Kong which was what started the whole meltdown to begin with.

Hopefully Friday will be a better day for Gage! We haven't picked anything from the Family Fun Box in a few weeks because we already had stuff going on, so maybe that will cheer him up?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Surprise!

I have hardly had a chance to get my blog posted on today because I have been playing with my new toy! Last night Scott said he needed to make a trip to Walmart and asked if I needed anything. I said, "Hmmm.....yeah, I need a Cricut!" You won't believe it when I tell you that he came home with a Cricut for me!! When he pulled up in the driveway and opened the garage door, I wondered to myself, "I wonder if he really got me one?" I then listened closely when he came in to see if maybe I could tell if he had something bigger or not, then after he didn't come into the living room with it, I decided I was just dreaming to think he would have gotten one. After the show I was watching finished, I got up to run down to the basement to check my email. I spent a little time on the computer and when I went back upstairs there was a big box sitting on the table and I about fell over when I saw it was a Cricut machine! I went in to ask him about it and he told me that I had just walked by it when I went to the basement the first time! Apparently that was the reason he was going to Walmart in the first place, it was just a coincidence that I asked him to get me one. They didn't have any left at the north Walmart and he drove all the way down to the south Walmart and apparently mine was the last one! What a surprise!!! I was so excited I had to get it set up right then and there and test it out. It is definitely a cool tool for scrapbooking. My friend Amy came over to play this evening and cut out a few page titles as well.
Okay ladies, put your tongues back into your mouth and stop drooling over my man! He didn't come this way, you know! It has taken me MANY years to get him trained, and I think it's finally paying off!! :-)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Well check

Today I took Emma in to see her pediatrician for her 5-year old well-check. She weighed in at a whopping 39.5 pounds and ranked at 50th %. She ranked at 97th % for her height! Long and lean, the nurse said. They tested her eyes and she has 20/20 vision. They tested her hearing and there we had some troubles. They used a hand held machine that looks a lot like an ear thermometer that emits a series of high-pitched beeps that she is supposed to hear and raise her hand to indicate when she hears the beep. She tested her left ear several times, thinking she didn't understand the instructions, or that maybe the ear piece wasn't fitting right. She consistently missed 3 of beeps. The nurse left to exchange the ear piece and came back in to test the right ear. Same thing, she consistently missed the same 3 beeps with each testing. Then she rechecked the left ear with the same results. She then did a tympanogram to measure the movement of the eardrum, and it normally shows as a high arc on a line graph. Both of Emma's ears were a flat line. The doctor looked in her ears and said there was some fluid trapped in there, but there was no redness or infection, but she prescribed some antibiotics to clear anything up, just in case, before we see the audiologist and ENT doctor that we've been referred to. We have noticed sometimes that she doesn't repond when we talk to her, but have figured it was selective hearing. Although, even this morning at the doctor's office she had gone into the play area and still had her jacket on so I called to her to bring me her jacket and I had to call her name several different times before she responded to me. So we have seen some subtle hints that there could be a problem. The teachers at school didn't mention anything about hearing at her parent-teacher conference, so I'm assuming they haven't noticed any problems. We go to the audiologist and ENT doctor on March 13 to have her ears checked out. Emma has HUGE tonsils, but doesn't have problems with frequent strep throats, so the doctor hasn't been concerned about them. However, with them as big as they are, it's possible that her adenoids are also enlarged which could be related to her hearing problems, so we may have to have her tonsils and adenoids taken out in the near future. We'll have to wait and see what the doctor says. I'm quite sure they will have to come out. They are the size of large marbles in the back of her throat. Gage also has enlarged tonsils, so I may have to have him checked out as well, and maybe I'll luck out and they'll be offering a two-for-one special? HA! We also had to provide a urine sample to make sure she doesn't have a urinary tract infection. That was quite an intesting task. Emma didn't want to pee in the cup, and after much coaxing and promising to go to Barnes and Noble and to McDonald's for lunch, she reluctantly agreed. Let me just say I didn't know she had that much force when peeing, and me telling her to "pee hard" after a few trickles of urine initially came out, was a bad choice of words! I hope they mop the floors every night, because I'm quite sure I didn't get all of the splatters wiped up with the paper towel!!!!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Good news and bad news

Bad news: Today was my appointment to visit the orthodontist and the plan was that my "bubba tooth" was going to have to be taken out now for good until my gap has closed up.

Good news: They were able to shave it down a hair more and I have it for another month!

Bad news: When I was eating lunch today I bit down on something hard and realized it was my "bubba tooth" and it had come off of the bracket.

Good news: I gagged and hacked hard enough that I was able to spit it up before I swallowed it.

Bad news: Now I look like a dork.

Good news: I was able to get another appointment for this afternoon and they were able to reattach it to the bracket.

Good news: I was on the ball this morning and got my supper put into the crock pot before taking the kids to school.

Bad news: Emma hated supper and said she would rather eat bug soup. We had to fight her to take a few bites, which took FOREVER. Then, just about a half an hour later she was standing in her room looking weird and Scott said, "What's wrong Emma?" Emma replies, "I think I am gonna puke!" Scott yells, "Bathroom, bathroom, bathroom, bathroom!"

Good news: Emma barfed all over the bathroom floor doorway and totally missed the carpet!

Bad news: Stacy was up all night coughing her brains out last night.

Good news: I just took some NyQuil about 20 minutes ago and it's starting to work; therefore, I must go to bed.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

And the winner is......................

Gage's Pinewood Derby races were today at the school and he is thrilled to death! His car came in 1st on his first race! Races 2-4 he came in 2nd, race 5 he came in 1st and race 6 he came in 2nd. He won a blue ribbon and is very proud of it! They give 1st place ribbons to the top 1/3, 2nd place ribbons to the middle 1/3 and 3rd place ribbons to the bottom 1/3. All I can say is that they set the standards high and I'm not sure how it can get much better than that in the years to come??

Gage's Star Wars X-wing Fighter with R2-D2 as the pilot.


Gage's car was in lane 3 for his first race, and you can see here that he won first in the heat.
After the real races, they allowed anyone else who brought a car to race. Scott and Emma also brought their own cars. Scott's was the Greenhead Gear themed car and Emma's was the yellow Slug bug car.

Here are our cars lined up to race. Scott's is the black car with the mallard (just in case you didn't know), Emma's is the yellow slug bug complete with flowers, and Gage's is the X-wing fighter. Unfortunately Emma had to leave the races early to attend a birthday party at the bowling alley so she did not get to see firsthand how well she did. Emma's car won EVERY race it was entered in!


I got a picture of Emma, Gage and Scott's race and as you can see here, she didn't win by just a little. Her car was SMOKIN' down the track! Scott wants me to also mention that he did not do any lubing on his car, as he didn't want to beat the kids. (I don't care how much lubing he could have done, his car wouldn't have beaten Emma's!!) Okay, Gage would want me to mention that his car DID beat Emma's once, but it was only because he gave hers a late start! :-) I wish she had been there to see her car race. She was a little upset during the "weigh-ins" because when Scott was trying to take some weight off of her car by drilling a hole in the bottom, he accidentally drilled completely through the car, creating a big hole on the hood of her car. She was not happy about that, but I guess it worked out for the best!

Gage displaying his winning car and his blue ribbon.

video

This is a video of Gage's first race that he won. I'm not sure how well it will turn out here, but Gage is in lane 3, the white car towards the middle of the track.

Our first experience with Pinewood Derby racing was a good one with no tears and no broken hearts!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Busy weekend!

Again, we have a very busy weekend! Today Emma went to her friend, Jadyn's, birthday party and had a wonderful time! Gage had hockey practice and Scott helped Gage and Emma finish up their Pinewood Derby cars for Gage's race tomorrow! I got to go scrapbooking for the day with Emily. We had a great time. Emily's consultant, Tara, had a Cricut machine there that she let anyone who wanted to, use it!! I LOVE IT! I want one of my own terribly bad! I only got 2 pages done in the 4 1/2 hours we were there, but that is 2 more than I would have gotten done if I hadn't gone. I worked on hockey pages in Gage's school album and I just HATE doing hockey pages. I have apparently taken too many pictures and have run out of ideas with these pages and have been struggling with them for several months. In fact, I haven't worked on his school album since October or November (I think?) because of it! I'm nearly done with hockey pages, however, so hopefully I will start zipping along in his school album and get it caught up to present. Scott was such a dear and fixed a wonderful supper and invited Emily and the kids to join us. We had a fun evening.

Tomorrow Emma has another birthday party to attend at the bowling alley after Gage has his Pinewood Derby car race at his school for Cub Scouts. He made his car into a Star Wars X-Wing fighter complete with an R2-D2 Lego head attached! It looks very cool and Scott has the wheels spinning super fast, so we're hoping for some good luck tomorrow! I'm not sure how I will be able to handle the emotional part of the race. As a Mom, you want so badly for your child to win, and it just breaks my heart when that doesn't happen. I will have to give myself a few talks before the race along with Gage! Emma has her own car to race in the extra races they have for family members. Hers is a yellow "Luv Bug" with little flowers all over it. It too, is very cute! I can see a lot of pictures being taken tomorrow and I will do my best to get them posted tomorrow as well.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Socks

What is it with my kids and socks? On Sunday I had ALL of the clothes washed and put away. This morning when I woke Gage up and was getting his clothes out of his drawer, he had no clean socks? I can't keep socks on him when he's at home. Immediately when he walks in the door after school and throws all of his garb on the loveseat, he sits down on the couch and peels his socks off and puts them on the back of the couch. I am so tired of finding dirty socks laying all over the couch, and I know when they start stinking, I'm going to really have a problem with it! So then, if we have to go somewhere, it's easier for him to just go get a new pair rather than remember where he left them when he peeled them off. He can go through about 3 pairs of socks in a day! I can't keep up with that. I guess I'm going to have to go buy more socks!

Tonight I had a volleyball game. I play on a co-ed team at Riverside Elementary. Our team is ranked 1st in our group! It has been fun playing with this group of people. They do a pretty good job of trying to get 3 hits in before sending it over the net. They will also set ME up! Typically when you play with guys, the girls never get to spike. Tonight I bump-set a nice one to one the men on the team, expecting him to hit it over. Instead, he set me up, and I just assumed it was for the other guy beside me. I just stood there and watched it, as the other guy scrambled to try and hit it over. The guy who set me up looked at me and laughed and said, I tried giving it right back to you!! I'll be ready next time! I have had a couple good ones in the past couple games, so hopefully I can get some more!

The other day my friend, Emily, recommended a book to me. The Choice, written by Nicholas Sparks. She gave the book to me on Monday, I believe, and I couldn't put it down and finished it today. Poor Emma kept saying, "Mom, please put that book down, are you going to read all day or what?" I finished it just before I had to leave and get Gage from school this afternoon. I called Emily on my phone and told her she was no longer allowed to recommend books to me because I spent the past 30 minutes bawling my head off! What a great book! I recommend it to all of you. I really love to read good books. I hate to read when it's a book that I don't like. In fact, I can never finish a book if it's one I don't get interested in. I have a couple more new books, Giving by Bill Clinton and The Appeal by John Grisham. I really enjoy reading John Grisham books and just finished Playing for Pizza, also written by him, last month. I'm going to try and read a book per month this year. So far, so good. Gage and I have started reading the 7th Harry Potter book Deathly Hallows, and if it weren't for these darned Star Wars books that he keeps bringing home from the school library, we could get heavily engrossed into that one! If there are any other good books you can recommend, I would love to hear about them!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Dermatologist

FINALLY! My appointment to see the dermatologist was today. Of course, my problem areas have gotten a little better, but they are still itching and inflamed, so I kept my appointment. I made sure after I dropped the kids off at school to come back home and take a really hot bath to get it all flared up so there would be something worth looking at when I got to the doctor's office. When I went in and told the receptionist at the front desk I had a 9:30 appointment with Dr. Luger, she looked me up in the system. She says, "Who is the appointment with?" I replied, "Dr. Luger." She entered my information again. She says, "When did you make that appointment? I don't see that you have one scheduled, do you remember who you talked to?" As fumes start to roll out of my ears, I told her that the appointment was made over 2 weeks ago, and NO I don't know who I talked to when I made the appointment because my doctor friend, Rob, made the appointment for me because when I initally called they said their first available appointment was in JULY! So, as I stood there, she got up and went to the shelf behind her and found some paperwork with my name on it and said, "Oh, here it is, you must be a new patient?" Whew! Lucky for her she found it! I sat down in the waiting room and waited about 10 minutes or so. That wasn't too bad, I thought! Then after I went into the treatment room and talked to the nurse about my problem. She left me to wait. I believe I probably sat in there and waited for the doctor for at least 40 minutes! UGH! Of course they only had cheezy magazines and no television, so I was left to admire the terribly cluttered room that is obvious no one straightens on a daily basis. FINALLY the doctor came in and looked at my legs. I told him about the dry, scaley, itchy places on my arms, neck, stomach, armpits, bends of my knees, etc. He wrote me a prescription for some cortisone cream and said I have dry skin. NO KIDDING!!! I could have told him that! He gave me a handout on what to do for dry skin and sent me on my merry way. I think he spent a maximum of 2 minutes in the exam room with me. Which was completely fine with me, because he was a little weird and had a very flat affect. So, I went to the pharmacy and filled the prescription and then went to Target to get the lotions that were recommended on the sheet of paper. I'll be interested in seeing the amount of that bill, because I'm sure he made a killing with that appointment! I just pray this stuff works. I did not know this, but read it on my sheet, that you should put lotion, i.e. Eucerin, Aveeno, etc on immediately after you bathe and before you dry off to keep the moisture in. I will try to do this in the future to prevent this from happening again. (Kysa, it also said that hot tubs are bad for the skin, which is what I'm betting your problem is with your places on your back).

On a happier note, Emma invited her friend Silas over for a play date this afternoon. As they were walking out of the building hand in hand, another little boy in their class asked his Dad why Silas was going with us? I told him that Silas and Emma were buddies and they were going to play this afternoon! (I'm sure he'll be interested in the girls someday!) They had a great time playing and I enjoyed the peace and quiet. Did I say peace and quiet? Yep, I sure did! I think we might have to invite him over more often! They built a fort in Emma's closet and played in there so nicely. Tonight when I checked it out, I noticed there were a bunch of books in there that they must have been looking at and Emma's Leapster. When it came time for me to go get Gage at school I went down to Emma's room to get them to come and get dressed for our walk, Emma looked at me funny as she stood there in her gymnastics outfit as Silas stood there half naked getting ready to put on one of Emma's other gymnastics outfits! LOL! I wish I had caught him dressed in it because I would have certainly tortured him with a picture the rest of his life! HA HA! I bundled them both up in snow pants, hats, mittens, etc for our walk to school. It was very cold, and I guess I shouldn't complain about all of the complaining they did on the way to school! I have never heard such wimps! HA! When we got to the school Silas says, "Stacy, I think my cheeks are frozen!" If you have seen Silas, he has the cutest chubby cheeks and they were as rosy as could be! Then he said, "I think they have frost bite!" HAHA! I gave him my scarf for the walk home; however, it was much more pleasant coming home than it was going to the school, as we had the wind at our backs. After we got home they got to watch a Magic School Bus DVD with popcorn until it was time for Emily to come and get Silas. We had a good day today!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Who are you, and what did you do with my child?

This morning Gage woke up in an unbelieveably good mood, despite the fact that he got to bed a little later than normal because of the Blue and Gold Banquet! He was very quick with his please and thank you's, and willing to do whatever I said. If I had asked him to jump, he would have said, "How high?" Apparently our conversation the other day about being upset and angry and how it's bad for your body, did some good! I told him that stress was bad for your heart and your head, and that when you're upset, sometimes you get headaches because of the pressure and sometimes people can have chest pains because of it. We rushed around this morning getting ready to leave for school and he was being polite despite all of the rushing. On our walk to school (which was quite cold I might add!) I said, "See Gage, how much better it is when everyone is happy and getting along in the morning?" He agreed that the morning was much better than usual. Gage said, "Not only was it nice for you Mom, but I even feel better because of our good morning!" I thought to myself, "Who are you, and what did you do with my child?" I left him at school and hurriedly walked home in the brutal cold. When I got home I had a message on the answering machine from Gage telling me, in such a sweet voice, that we forgot to put his shoes in his backpack, and if I had a chance, could I bring them to school for him. I put my coat, hat and mittens right back on and took them to school for him. I jogged half the way because it was freezing and I just wanted to get home in the warm house.

I walked to school this afternoon to pick him up, and also brought a friend's daughter home with us because she had volleyball practice at 4:15 and it was easier for her to come home with us than for her Mom to make 3 trips to the school within a couple hours' time. I thought it was brutal this morning?! HA! That was nothing compared to the walk home this afternoon! My forehead and eyebrows were hurting it was so cold!!! I told Paige that I would drive her back to school because I didn't think she needed to walk back in temperatures like that! The temps definitely dropped from this morning to this afternoon! It's supposed to be even colder tomorrow! Thank goodness Emma goes to school too and I can drive!

We ate an early supper so I could take Emma to dance (we did a make up session tonight since she will be attending Jadyn's birthday party on Saturday and will miss her regular dance time), and Scott and Gage had a den meeting at another Cub Scout's house because they have a shop in their backyard and they were trying to get their Pinewood Derby cars finished up for the race on Sunday.

Anyway, Scott and the kids got home about 8:30 tonight, which is another late night to bed for the kids. My normal Gage is back. He's already had a meltdown from lack of sleep last night, and I can only imagine how it's going to be in the morning! UGH! I begged him before I left his room, "Please, please, PLEASE wake up in a better mood in the morning Gage!"

Monday, February 18, 2008

Blue and Gold Banquet

Tonight we attended Gage's Cub Scout Blue and Gold Banquet. It wasn't anything too exciting, but I didn't have to fix supper, and that's ALWAYS a good thing! :-) Scott received an award for being a den leader. It was a computer print saying thanks to Scott for being a den leader. We also had to order the candy bars for our den. Yes, there is yet ANOTHER fundraiser! We will be selling Nestle Crunch candy bars (nearly 1/2 pound of chocolate!) for $3 each. For each case sold (24 bars in a case), the scout will have raised $19.60, which will be used for their membership dues. So, that will be nice those fees will be waived. This also turned out to be a way for the Boy Scouts of America to ask for donations. Good thing Scott had his wallet with him, as I don't always carry my purse. That was an expensive coffee mug and patch we bought! It was an evening out after a day spent in. The kids were on vacation today for President's day. I am happy there is school tomorrow. We had a lot of fighting between the two of them today that was causing me alot of stress. I wish they could just get along. (I know you're laughing Mom, because I am being paid back for all of the fighting Steve and I did!) I finally sent them to their rooms. I believe that was just what Gage needed, as he sat in there and played with a bunch of toys very quietly. Emma came out of her room a couple different times to see if she could come out. I finally told them they could come out AFTER they cleaned their rooms and made their beds. They both did a great job and were much better behaved after their "time-outs".

Scott got home yesterday afternoon from his trip to Kansas. It was a DU Kansas State Convention. They asked Scott to give a presentation. This was also a decoy-type party, and Scott was the LUCKY winner of some more decoys! WOO HOO! We needed more of those! He was quite excited because this was apparently a great deal, and was what he was wanting to win at the last decoy party he went to. There were some ladies sitting at Scott's table and he overheard them talking about Webkinz and how they are addicted to them! Thank goodness I'm not the only one! Scott chimed right into the conversation and told them "My wife is into them too and I just went ahead and bought her one for Valentine's Day!" They thought that was a great idea!!! Then yesterday at hockey, I saw a Mom carrying around a Webkinz and I asked her if she was addicted to them too, and she said, "Well, there are some fun games on there I like to play!" Seriously, I was thinking maybe there's something wrong with me, like I didn't grow up or something, but now I'm feeling a little better about it. My friend Emily's kids are into them and I know she is having some fun with them too. Last night she called me up and said, "You need to get on Webkinz right now and Spin the big kinz cash wheel!" :-)

This afternoon my Mom called me and said, "Guess who I have sitting here at the kitchen table with me?" I reply, "Dad?" Mom says, "Okay, well yeah, but who else?" I couldn't guess. She apparently got Dad to take her to Maryville yesterday and talked him into taking her to Hallmark so she could check out the Webkinz. Apparently they had a sale going. If you bought one regular sized Webkinz, then you get a Lil Kinz at half price. Well, she came home with 6 pets. 2 for Gage's cousins, 1 for herself, and one for Gage, Emma and one for me too! :-) She knows the way to my heart! HA HA!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Word choice

Tonight at supper, Gage was talking about word choice. He said that his teacher, Mrs. Vetter, likes to play word choice. I said, "What's that Gage?" Gage proceeds to tell me that it is a thing they play at school when someone says a word such as wind, for example, everyone else is to come up with different word choices for wind. Gage asked me, "Mom, what word choice would you come up with for the word wind?" I replied, "Blustery." Gage said, "That's what I said Mom!" I asked him if anyone else in his class came up with blustery as well. He said no one did. Then I reminded Gage of the time when he was 3 years old and he said to me, "Mom, don't be so daft!" I must admit I had to go and look that word up! After I looked it up, I had to ask him where he learned that word. Gage says, "I just know it Mom!" Okay, there's no way a 3 year old can just know what daft means. I also recall telling our neighbors, Maggie and Dave this story. Maggie, who reads more than anyone I know, had never heard that word before either, then soon after this, a book she was reading had the word "daft" in it, and she talks about how she knew what that word meant because of Gage. (In case you're wondering what that word means, it means senseless, stupid or foolish, insane, crazy, merry, playful) I don't remember the details as to why Gage told me not to be so stupid when he was 3 years old, but I'm sure it was with good reason. (And, in case you're wondering where he learned that word, it was from Thomas the Tank Engine!) I need to buy myself a dictionary and start playing "word choice" with Gage and Emma. Scott told Gage, "I know someone who is really good at that game Gage." Our friend Johann Walker. Apparently Johann plays this game at work with Scott, and Scott often times has to go look up the word to know what he's talking about! I was glad to hear that, because there are a lot of times I have no idea what he's talking about either! What a great way to teach some vocabulary words, a subject that I always stunk at!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Spring is in the air

The weather was beautiful here today. But with beautiful weather this time of year comes slushy muddy messes, which sure dirty up a vehicle in a hurry. This also is starting into my least favorite time of year, spring. Spring is my least favorite season. Spring means mud, which means muddy dog feet, which means tracking all over the house. It also means shedding those winter coats. Brie shouldn't have as much shedding going on when that really starts up with all the wrestling she and Nel are doing. When they are done I have to get the swiffer out and sweep it up and I have had at least 5 huge piles of dog hair that I have swept up. I wish there was a market out there for pet hair, because I would have the market cornered for sure!

I'm glad the day is over. We had dance this morning and I had to gear Gage up for hockey in the basement of the church while Emma danced so that I could have him nearly ready when we got to his hockey practice. We weren't very late at all, so that was good. After hockey Gage went to play with his friend Grant at his house. He had a great time. Emma wasn't very happy about not getting to go, so I told her we could go do something special. We had lunch at DQ and she enjoyed that. Then we ran into the mall to get a few birthday presents for parties we have coming up. She was ticked about that too because she didn't get anything. I guess having a birthday just 2 days ago isn't good enough? UGH! I hate when they get the "gimmies". Then Shannon invited us to eat supper with them at Los Amigos. I didn't have to cook a thing today, and that's always a good thing! :-)

Scott gets back tomorrow. The kids don't have school on Monday due to President's Day or something like that? I have tons of laundry to do and the knob broke off of my washing machine. I am improvising with Scott's leatherman in the time being. Both the washer and dryer are about to bite the dust I think? The dryer is awfully noisy and squeaky when it is running and the washing machine won't spin out half of the time. I think I am in need of a set of those super large capacity, super efficient washer and dryers. I want to be able to wash 100 towels at once. Just think how much time that would save from doing laundry!!!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Quiet day

As part of my Valentine's Day gift today, Scott said that he would get the kids up and feed them breakfast and get them ready for school AND take them to school. I was secretly thinking to myself, yeah right. He is out of town for the weekend and had to fly out around 11am today, so he didn't go to work this morning. I told myself that I would make sure to get up and help get them off to school. Apparently when Scott got up, he shut the bedroom door and I was unable to hear anything that was going on this morning. THANKFULLY, I woke up at 8am. I went downstairs to see what was going on. Emma was still in her p.j.'s and they had both eaten breakfast. Today was wear blue day at school for Gage, so I had to get him to change his clothes. Emma's Valentine's Day party was today at school, and Scott hadn't gotten her Valentine's put into her backpack. Then I realized Gage did not have a snack or his water bottle in his bag! I started running around the house getting this and that. Then I remembered his dictation test was this morning and I asked Scott if he had gone over those with Gage. He hadn't. Needless to say, they were just a little late this morning as Scott quizzed Gage on his dictation on the drive to school. When Scott got back home he told me that he thought it was going to be an easy morning, so he slept in til 7:30, then realized after I got up that he didn't have enough time to do everything. Plus, he didn't know today was wear blue day for Gage, etc. etc. He admitted that he didn't realize there was so much to do in the mornings!

Emily took Emma home with her after she and Silas got out of school, then after Gage got out of school I picked him up and we went over to Emily's and had supper and watched last night's Survivor episode. I had a very quiet day and didn't get as much done as I wanted to get done. However, since Scott is gone this weekend, it will be a fairly quiet weekend at home, except for dance for Emma tomorrow and hockey for Gage Sat and Sun and church on Sunday. This house is a wreck and I have dog hair everywhere, so it is a good time to stay home and get things done!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day Birthday Emma!

Emma and Silas at their last hockey lessons together yesterday. Aren't they sweet?


Hattie, Margaret, Emma and Silas at the last day of hockey party. We have been attending Margaret Peluso's Preschool Hockey program for the past 4 years straight! We will miss her next year. We would have had one more year with her, but since Emma will be going to all day Kindergarten, she won't be able to attend the 11:45a-12:30p sessions. :-(

Emma and "Brownie" her new Webkinz she got for Valentine's Day!


Gage and Coly the Collie, his new Webkinz for Valentine's Day! (Yes Colton, this Collie is named after YOU!)

Gage also received another great surprise! Star Wars Trade Federation Legos. I think there are a million pieces to this set. Have fun Scott! :-)


Emma chose Texas Roadhouse for her Birthday supper. Silas, Hattie, Luke, Emily and Jody joined in on the fun!


Yeah, so it got a little wild!


Anything you can do, I can do better!


This is the infamous saddle that Emma loves, and is the sole reason she chooses Texas Roadhouse for her birthday supper. She was sitting on Emily's lap while waiting for the saddle to arrive and Emily said she could feel her heart racing with all of the excitement!


Well, okay, the anticipation is way better than the actual event! Now she's quite embarrassed and makes it look almost painful to be on that saddle!


When you celebrate your birthday at Texas Roadhouse, the waiters/waitresses come over and yell out to the entire restaurant that it is Emma's 5th birthday and asks for everyone to yell "YEE HAW!" I'm not sure why she continues torture herself with embarrassment. This is her second year in a row!

It's almost over Emma!



Jody whispering sweet nothings into Emma's ear!



Emily and Lukey!


Emma received a free dessert for her birthday which she shared with the rest of the gang. I was too miserable to even taste!


Jody sings Gage a song about not being selfish.


Wow! Another birthday has come and gone! I can't believe Emma is already 5 years old! My baby is growing up too fast! We had a great day. Emma was thrilled with her birthday gifts. My friend, Sherry, and her 3 kids came over after school and visited a couple of hours and then we met Emily, Jody, Silas, Hattie and Luke at Texas Roadhouse for Emma's Birthday supper. It was VERY loud in there and extremely crowded. Everyone was out celebrating Emma's birthday. HA! I always forget that it is also Valentine's Day, and probably the busiest night of the year. We had to wait quite awhile for our seats, even though we called ahead as required. We had some surprise visitors while we were there. Kim and Juanita Hocking stopped by just to give Emma her birthday surprise. We were surprised and happy to see them. Thanks guys!


Emma was thrilled to death with her new book from Kim and Juanita. Olivia Saves the Circus!

After we left the restaurant Gage was feeling a bit sorry for himself and wondering why everyone was so happy it was Emma's birthday and no one was happy to see him. Emily sang him a great "Happy Un-birthday" song in the parking lot, then when we got home Gage was extremely happy that he too, got a great surprise from The Hockings! And of course, that was the book of choice at bedtime! Thanks again guys! You saved the day!
Overall, I'd say we all had a pretty good day. I too received a very thoughtful Valentine from Scott! I got a Starbucks ("Four bucks" is what Jody calls them) gift card and I'm a little embarrassed to say, my very own Webkinz! :-) I had to laugh, even though I was almost as excited as the kids are with theirs! After I walked Gage to school this morning, Emma and I came down to register our Webkinz on the computer. She wanted to know who's account I was going to put it on, hers or Gage's. I said, "Neither! I'm making my own account!" I believe she was a little shocked. When I registered my Himalayan cat, I received 2,500 Webkinz cash. I bought myself a yard to plant a garden and a few other things and was down to around 250 dollars. Later tonight when I logged on, I noticed my money was down to $17. When I went into the room where my pet was, I had to laugh when I saw it dressed up in cowboy boots, pink cowboy hat, heart-shaped sunglasses and a cute bathing suit. Apparently when we had company this afternoon, Emma snuck down to the basement and spent nearly all of my money on clothes! What a little turkey!!!!!!!! She has about $1,500 of her own and then spends mine!!! I'm going to have to change my password I guess! I think she loves torturing me! I guess it's payback time for me!
I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day!

















Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Snow

Finally the meterologists knew what they were talking about! They said we were going to get snow and we did! I think somewhere around 4 inches? They said it could be anywhere up to 7.4 inches! My body is completely worn out! After we got home from picking up Gage at school, I went straight to the garage and got out the snow shovel. Unfortunately the other day when Scott shoveled, he did not work too hard at it and there was a lot of packed, drifted snow on the steps up to the front door, and scattered throughout the driveway. It is a bit difficult to get that up when there's 4 more inches on top of it! My shoulders are killing me. We have 2 snow shovels. One is the Dakota Snow Blade. That is THE most awesome snow shovel around; however, it didn't work too well for me today with the packed snow underneath. Our second shovel is pretty crappy with a plastic scoop on the end. That doesn't work too well for chiseling up the packed snow either. So, when my neighbor Dave got home from work, I asked him if I could borrow his metal snow shovel. The name of it, labeled right on the handle, was Brute. Let me tell you, it was a Brute! Whew! I got nearly all of the packed snow off the driveway, as well as the 4 inches on top of it. I started at 3:15 and ended about 4:45! I was seriously sweating my butt off and had to shed my scarf before I was through. My stocking hat would have gone too if my hair hadn't been looking so fine! :-) When I was finally done, I went into the house and couldn't believe the mess! There was dog hair EVERYWHERE! I am not kidding! This week we are dog-sitting for Brie's sister, Nel. Apparently they got to wrestling and dog hair was flying everywhere. You know it's bad when Gage and Emma are commenting on it! I got out the swiffer (another wonderful invention) and swept up a huge pile of dog hair! Nel is a very well-behaved dog. (Unlike her sister!) She has been following me around the house all evening. She seems to be curious about all of the commotion that goes on in our house. She lives at home with Johann and Amy, and their daughter Caity who is 13, so I'm guessing it's fairly quiet around there in comparison to here! She was very interested in bath time and had her nose right in the middle of everything giving Emma kisses that she thoroughly enjoyed! Finally at bedtime, things quieted down and Nel was able to lay down and relax and Gage was quite thrilled when she layed down right beside his bed, just as Branta used to do! He asked if I would let her stay there so he could sleep with her like he did with Branta. I have been sneaking quietly around the house so Nel won't get up and leave his bedside to follow me around. So far, it's worked. She's probably completely exhausted from her chaotic day since she is typically in her kennel all day while her family is at work and school! She'll be ready to go home next Tuesday when her family gets back from Texas, I'm sure!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Very clever

Tonight Scott came up with a very clever way to get Gage to do his homework NEATLY. We have been having problems with him rushing through his school work and being very SLOPPY with his handwriting. It drives me nuts. Especially on Friday when he comes home with his test paper and it is sooooo neat that I would never guess it was his paper. So, I know he can do it, he just chooses to not take his time and do it neatly. Anyway, Scott told Gage tonight, as he set a timer, that each minute he spent on his homework, taking his time to do it nicely, will be an extra minute that he gets read to at bedtime! When I heard him tell Gage that, I thought that was a brilliant idea and wished that I hadn't come up with it myself! Anyway, he spent 20 min and 1 sec doing his spelling worksheet and it was so nice and neat I couldn't believe it! The funny part is that when we layed down in bed to start reading, he thought that was going to be A LOT of time and that we would get to read about 3 chapters in the new Harry Potter book we just started. The timer went off before I even finished reading the first chapter! Anyway, it was a brilliant idea and I look forward to trying it again tomorrow! WAY TO GO SCOTT!!! :-)

Not much going on here!

I'm sorry I didn't get anything posted yesterday. Sunday night I took a pill to prevent me from itching all night. It seemed to work, but I felt like I had a terrible hangover yesterday morning! (Not that I know what those feel like! HA) I just felt terrible and didn't want to do anything. My friend Shannon called me before I took the kids to school to ask if I could watch her daughter, Grace, while she went to the dentist. I was kind of glad to have the excuse to go straight home after dropping the kids off and just sitting around and playing with her. She's quite a character and loves Brie and the cats, as long as they don't invade her space!

Last night I attended a Tastefully Simple party that my friend, Emily, was having. It was a lot of fun and we got to taste a lot of different things. I of course had to order a few things to try some of the other recipes in the slow cooker cook book thing I got from another Tastefully Simple party. I already have supper going in the crockpot for tonight. It's called Asian Chive Pork Soup. It smells delicious and I can't wait to try it out. The only problem is that this Asian Chive seasoning is "seasonal" and apparently you can only get the seasonal stuff through the end of this month, and then they come out with their spring and summer line. The bad thing is, that the seasonal products may or may not be available next fall. I wish I would have gone to marketing school so I could think up things like this to keep people spending their money!! After the party I stayed and watched Prison Break with them on television. It was nice to be able to watch it on a clear screen without having to get up and adjust the rabbit ears during the commercials! AND, we didn't have to even watch the commercials because they have some sort of thing through their cable that you can set it to record and watch it later and fast forward through the commercials. I've discovered after watching the episodes on Netflix that the shows are much better without commercial breaks. They are more thrilling and suspenseful without the commercials! We've caught up to the present with the Prison Break series and we have gotten into the 24 show and are up to season 3 right now. I'm told I need to get into watching LOST now. :-)

Not much going on today. I'm anxious to watch a new season of Big Brother that starts tonight. Usually this is aired during the summer, but they are starting one now and I'm anxious to get started watching it! There has been nothing on television since this writer's strike, which will hopefully be over soon!

We're supposed to be getting some snow this afternoon, and I'm not going to believe it until I see it. We were supposed to have had a blizzard Friday night and Saturday and didn't even see a flake of snow! Everyone was so prepared for it too. Emma's dance teacher called Friday night to cancel dance on Saturday in preparation for the blizzard. That was a wasted snow day!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Partied out!

Celebrating Emma's 5th birthday at the Dakota Zoo!




Emily and the boys working on their part of the "Scavenger hunt relay race word scramble" (Yes, that is all one game! :-)




Scott and the girls working on their answers



Emma makes a wish (for a Webkinz) and blows out her 5 candles!




Well lookie here! She gets her wish! Silas, Hattie and Luke gave Emma "Popsicle" for her birthday.



Emma actually got her wish doubled and received 2 Webkinz pets! She received many great gifts from her friends and had them all out and playing with each and every one of them as soon as we got home! The party went very well. Since the temperature outside was extremely cold, no one else in Bismarck ventured to the zoo today, so we had the entire Discovery Center to ourselves. Gage said that was the best part, that there weren't any other people there! Speaking of Gage, we had a talk today about Emma's party and how she would be getting presents and he wouldn't. He said, "That's okay Mom because she'll just be getting girl stuff." I informed him that it was a possibility of her getting a Webkinz, and that it was okay for her to get them even though he wouldn't be getting any. Not much was said after that. During the present opening at the party he was doing very well until she opened up a Pinto Pony Webkinz. He has been wanting that one, and when I looked at him, he just had the saddest look on his face.

Isn't that just pitiful? Thanks to my photographer, Emily, I got a great shot of that face! Thank you Emily!!! That will be a great picture to add to his album!! Anyway, it nearly broke my heart. I don't know why I'm like that? I just can't stand to see my kids sad like this. Anyway, Gage and Emma received packages in the mail on Friday from their G'pa and G'ma Stephens and it just so happened that there was a Clydesdale horse in Gage's package that I had put back to give him on Valentine's Day from them. Since I knew that horse was waiting for him at home, I knew I could put a smile back on his face. It worked. Emma opened up another Webkinz from them and everyone was happy.
The cakes were delicious. I must inform you all that frosting is a very important part of a cake that has been turned out of it's pan. It definitely is an aid in keeping the cake moist. Gage and Emma's butterfly cakes were a little tough to cut; however, they did have a few pieces eaten off of them. Juanita gave me the best idea to send them to work with Scott. I'm sure they'll get eaten there! Thanks Juanita!!! You saved me about 5 pounds! We all had a great time at the party. And, a big thanks goes out to Emily and Jody for helping Scott and I keep everyone in line!! I really appreciate all that you did!
Scott had to leave the zoo once to get some candles and a lighter at the store. I did pretty good for only forgetting that. I seem to always forget about the candles!!
When he came back with Jody, Scott told me that Jody told him they had some good news and some bad news. I lit up and said, "I knew it! I knew it!" I don't know if I dreamed this or if it really happened, but I was thinking of Emily being pregnant. I was so excited! I was quite shocked to find out that wasn't the news! The news was that they are moving. I'm so sad about that. Later, after I thought about it for awhile, I had to ask, "So what's the good news?" I did my best at not showing too many emotions, even though I nearly broke out in tears. I am truly heartbroken. I am so happy for them that this will be a great career move for Jody and that they will be close to family, but my selfish side will be sooooo sad to see them go. I have never met anyone quite like Emily. We instantly became friends and we have so many things in common. The Jennings family became part of our family and I almost feel as if someone in my family has died. I don't quite know all of the details yet as Emily said she has been trying to tell me the news for several days, and waiting for the right time to do it. I can only pray that our friendship will continue to be this strong despite the many miles between us. Gage and Emma were oblivious to any "adult talk" at the party and when we got home I told them the news. They are very sad. After the kids were in bed and read to, Gage asked me if I could come and lay with him. When I was laying there with him he says, "Mom, is Carolina a good place?" I replied, "Yes Gage, Carolina is a good place, and we will go visit them." Gage says, "How many days can we stay?" :-) We have never been to South Carolina, so it will be a great vacationing spot! We have a little over a month before it happens, so hopefully I can get my tears shed before the big day. I told Gage he better get to work on learning how to whistle like Emily, because he only has a little time left to learn it. She just taught him how to roll his r's and Scott is soooo envious. He keeps asking Gage, "How do you do that?" Apparently to work the new swan call he got for Christmas, you need to be able to roll your r's. Scott told Gage that he will have to be the official swan caller! He'll be set if he ever takes a Spanish class. Thanks Emily, for all that you have brought into our lives. We love you all and will miss you dearly!



Saturday, February 9, 2008

Birthday Cake Baking Trivia

(To see the correct answers scroll to the end of this post)

1. Emma chose a _______________ cake for her 5th birthday.
  • A. Littlest Pet Shop
  • B. Finding Nemo
  • C. Butterfly
  • D. None of the above

2. How many butterfly cakes did Emma have made for her 5th birthday?

  • A. 1
  • B. 2
  • C. 3
  • D. None of the above

3. Stacy has _________________.

  • A. Butterflies in her stomach
  • B. Butterfly cakes coming out of her ears
  • C. Got to be completely nuts
  • D. Both B and C

4. _______ pounds of powdered sugar were used to make the frosting for Emma's cake(s).

  • A. 2 (1 bag of powdered sugar)
  • B. 4 (2 bags of powdered sugar)
  • C. 6 (3 bags of powdered sugar)
  • D. None of the above

5. How many neighbors did Stacy have to call to get the extra ingredients she needed to make more frosting?

  • A. 1
  • B. 2
  • C. 3
  • D. Are you kidding? Stacy is so organized she wouldn't need to call on the neighbors for extra ingredients.

6. After studying the images below, what did Stacy believe would be the easiest way to entertain the kids during this cake baking frenzy and keep them happy?


  • A. Let Emma make her own cake
  • B. Let Emma and Gage decorate their own cakes
  • C. Both A and B
  • D. What? Are you crazy? This would only add to the chaos and mess!

7. What happened to Stacy's butterfly cake when she left the kitchen and was gone for less than 2 minutes?

  • A. Nothing
  • B. Emma ate the cake
  • C. Brie ate the cake
  • D. There's no way that Brie, the most well-mannered dog alive, would do anything to cause Stacy any grief

8. How many hours did this afternoon of cake baking/decorating take?

  • A. 2
  • B. 4
  • C. 6
  • D. 8

9. Who decided that while the kids and Stacy were busy, it would be a great time to take a nap?

  • A. Grus
  • B. Griz
  • C. Scott
  • D. All of the above

10. Who woke up about an hour or so later and decided it would be a great time to ask Stacy, "What's for supper?"

  • A. Scott
  • B. Grus
  • C. Griz
  • D. None of the above

11. Who decided they better take matters into their own hands and make spaghetti for supper and sprayed Ragu sauce all over Stacy's cake while she was still in the process of decorating it?

  • A. Scott
  • B. Gage
  • C. Emma
  • D. No one would be careless enough to do something like that!

12. Who spent the entire day in their pajamas?

  • A. Stacy
  • B. Emma
  • C. All of the above

Stacy's Monarch Butterfly

Emma's strawberry flavored pastel butterfly


Gage's butterfly with a chunk of wing missing thanks to Brie (bottom right, this picture doesn't do it justice)

Gage and Emma proudly display their "masterpieces"




Stacy changed out of her pajamas just for this picture, then jumped right back in them!

Emma LOVES her Monarch cake!

Our butterflies

WHAT A MESS!!!!





Scott did help me clean up this mess!
What a long day! I am almost too pooped to party tomorrow at the zoo. If anyone would like to come over for cake tomorrow afternoon, come on over! As you can see, we have plenty! (I won't make any of you eat the cake that Brie decided to sample!)
Answers:
1. Butterfly
2. C (3 butterfly cakes)
3. D Both B and C (Stacy has butterfly cakes coming out of her ears, and Stacy has to be completely nuts!)
4. C (6 lbs of powdered sugar!)
5. 2 neighbors (Bonnie had the powdered sugar and Maggie had the Crisco shortening)
6. C, Both A and B (Emma made her own strawberry cake, and Emma and Gage both got to decorate their own butterfly cake!)
7. C (Brie ate the cake!) UGH!!!!!!
8. D (8 hours spent baking/decorating cakes)
9, 10 and 11. I'm sure you knew the answers to these "no-brainer" questions!
12. C, both Emma and Stacy spent the entire day in their p.j.'s!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Valentine's Dinner

Tonight we attended our church's annual Valentine's Dinner. I think this might have been the 17th annual dinner? I can't remember for sure what the MC said it was? I had a great time. Mostly because I got to sit with 4 of my favorite people (well, okay 5 if I include Scott). We invited Emily and Jody to attend with us, and Juanita and Kim Hocking sat with us as well. The entertainment was wonderful. The kids got to spend the evening in one of the day care rooms free of charge and also got to eat pizza. They had a super time, but were very tired when we got home. Especially Gage. He is coming down with something and was very irritable as far as Emma was concerned. Everything she did "annoyed" him. They are asleep and it's going to be another one of those weekends where there's a lot going on and not enough sleep. Tomorrow my day will be spent baking and decorating Emma's 5th birthday cake. We are having her party on Sunday afternoon at the zoo. They were calling for a blizzard tonight (although it was still very nice outside when we left the Valentine's dinner) into later tomorrow. We'll see what happens. The party will be in the Discovery Center. We were hoping it would be nice and we could have a scavenger hunt around the zoo grounds. Emily and I may still go to the zoo tomorrow to devise some sort of scavenger hunt that can be done within the Discovery Center. We'll see how the cake decorating goes! This year, by chance, Emma is having a butterfly themed party. She has been planning on a Littlest Pet Shop party for quite some time. However, a couple months back when our Ben Franklin store announced they were going out of business, I went in to take a look and they had a lot of party stuff, i.e. invitiations, goody bags, etc priced to go. I picked up some butterfly invitations and some butterfly goody bags because they were cheap and I thought they were cute. When we were filling up the goody bags she told me she wanted a butterfly cake to match her bags. I was actually quite excited about that, as I knew a butterfly cake would be way easier than a Littlest Pet Shop cake, AND, the bonus was that I didn't have to go buy or rent the cake pan. Emily had one that her Mom sent home with her this past summer! SCORE! I'll be sure to take pictures of the finished masterpiece before Emma gets ahold of it!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Acts of Kindness

Gage brought home a little sheet of paper the other day with 2 hearts attached to it that were cut out from pink and purple construction paper. The sheet said that they were doing something fun in their classroom, and had an "Acts of Kindness" poster hung up in their room. Each time we catch our child "in the act" of doing something kind, we are supposed to write their name and date and what they did on this heart and then it will be displayed on the poster in the room. And, if we need more than 2, we can make more to send to school. I have been desperately watching for Gage to do something kind so I can send one to school. Unfortunately, acts of kindness from Gage are a rarity around the house these days. There have been way too many late nights to bed due to hockey. Two days ago they celebrated their "100th Day of School" and had some fun things going on. Then, yesterday, for their 101st day, they were to bring a blanket or a stuffed animal to snuggle with while they watched 101 Dalmations. The night before it just popped into my head that I needed to put Gage's blanket "kie" in his backpack, but I figured since he sleeps with it, I'll just do it in the morning. Well, because there was so much crankiness yesterday morning, I completely forgot about sending his "kie" and stuffed animal. When I was standing in the hallway at school yesterday to pick Gage up, I saw kids carrying pillows and it struck me that I COMPLETELY forgot about his blanket. I felt horrible. I figured he was the only one in his class not to have something to snuggle with. So when Gage came out, that was the first thing I asked him. He said a girl named Katalina loaned him an extra stuffed animal that she had had in her backpack to snuggle with during the movie. What an act of kindness! So last night, as I was making extra cut-out hearts (which I'm sure I won't be needing) I made one for Gage to take to school to give to the teacher to hang up for Katalina. It read, "Katalina loaned Gage a stuffed animal to snuggle with because his Mom forgot his." I'm anxious to hear how that goes over this morning at school. While I was filling hearts out, I really wanted to fill one out for Gage too, but I'm not going to do it if there really isn't a reason to. So, I had Emma come to me so I could tell her a secret. I asked her to go get a couple of books and ask Gage to read them to her so I could fill out a heart for him to take to school. So she did. She took the books into the living room and asked very nicely, "Gage would you please read me these books?" Gage replies, "I'm watching this movie Emma!" She then told him it was for a heart, he didn't seem to care. (Although if he would have read it to her after knowing it was for a heart, he wouldn't have gotten the heart.) Last night I told Scott on the way to hockey practice about the hearts and that I'm really watching for him to do something kind and I'm not having any luck, so asked him to be on the lookout. No acts of kindness were reported. So, anyone out there who will be seeing Gage this month, please be on the lookout for some act of kindness and let me know so he can have at least one heart on the poster at school!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Romance and Marriage

Scott heard this on the radio and wanted me to listen. I did. Now you can listen and have a chuckle too. Enjoy!

Winter skin problems

The winter weather is rough on my skin. Last year about this time, I started to develop some dry, itchy patches on the front of my lower legs. Mostly my right leg. It drove me crazy all winter long. I tried different lotions and even some cortisone plus cream. Nothing worked. I also have a problem with my bottom lip splitting in the winter time. This happens every year, and I can't really remember how long ago it started, but it will eventually split and it is nearly impossible to heal. It will almost be where I think it is healed, and then when I wake up in the morning, and laugh or smile, it splits back open. Very annoying. Anyway, come spring it all starts going away and healing up. Last year was the first time for my legs to get that dry, itchy skin, which I think is some form of eczema. About a month ago or so, I started having the dry skin problem again on my right shin. It is terribly itchy and I've scratched it so much that I have little scabby areas all over from where I've itched myself to the point of bleeding. It then started to show up on my left shin as well. Now, it's on the back side of both of my knees, my elbows and a little bit of bumpy, itchy areas on the back of my right hand. I am about to go nuts from all of the itching. I love to take hot baths, and hot water is the worst thing you can do for dry, itchy skin (however, I do it anyway). I seem to do okay through the day, but come evening when I have a chance to sit down and cover up with a blanket, the itchiness starts up. I get to the point where I'm itching all over my body. My friend Shannon's husband is a doctor and he suggested I take Vistaril, which he could prescribe when I showed him my legs. I don't really like taking a lot of medicine, so I declined. Scott has been getting quite annoyed with my itching problem in the evenings and also at bedtime. I just can't lay still. He has been telling me I need to see a doctor. Well, yesterday I finally called the Dermatology clinic at MidDakota Clinic. I asked the gal if I needed to be referred and she said I didn't need to be. So, I asked her if I could schedule an appointment. She said sure. Then she said the first available appointment would be July. WHAT?????????? You've got to be kidding me? JULY????? Crap, I hope this stuff is gone by then! (It was last year anyway). I couldn't believe it. She said I would need to call my primary care physician if I wanted to be seen sooner than that. Well, that's the problem. I don't have a primary care physician. The nurse practitioner I typically see works at the Women's Clinic and is primarily OB/Gyn. I don't think she's going to be able to help me too much? And, not to mention the fact that she doesn't even work there anymore, so anyone I go to would be someone new. So, I figured I might as well go to a skin doctor who deals with this stuff on a daily basis. I don't want someone misdiagnosing me with scabies or something, right Kysa? HA! Anyway, I then called my friend Shannon on some recommendations on a PCP. Her husband, Rob, answered the phone, and I figured I could just as well ask him, since he would know nearly all of the doctors since he works with them. I told him they couldn't get me in until July. He asked if I wanted him to call them up because he needed to call them for his mother anyway. I was like, "Well, that's not what I called for, but if you think it would help, that would be great." He called them up and they tried telling him the same thing, that there were no openings until July. He told them I was his sister, and that this problem will be gone by July since it only occurs during the winter time, and don't you think it would be a good time to see her, when she's having the problem? She says, "Oh, yeah, I guess that would make sense." DUH!!!!! Well, I now have an appointment for Feb 20!!! I guess it's good to have friends in high places! :-) Thanks Rob! I think by the 20th; however, I will have itched myself into oblivion? However, I'm not complaining since my other option was 6 months from now!!!!!!!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I've been tagged

My friend Emily tagged me. I had to ask her what that meant.

6 Weird/Random things about Me
My friend Emily tagged me in this. I think it will be pretty interesting to learn weird things about other people. So, here are the rules.
(1) Link to the person that tagged you.
(2) Post the rules on your blog.
(3) Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself.
(4) Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs.
(5) Let each random person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their website.

I've had to do some thinking on this, and here is what I've come up with.

1. I am deathly afraid of public speaking. If I attempt to speak in front of a crowd, regardless if I'm standing in front of them or not, my neck turns red with hives and they crawl all the way up to my face and my ears start to burn. My voice sounds like I'm crying and I feel sick to my stomach.

2. I am obsessive/compulsive about certain things. For instance, if Gage or Emma are into a certain toy, I will buy them until they have too many of them. Also with books. If I buy a book and Gage likes it, and it happens to be in a series, we will end up with ALL of the books in that series, i.e. Junie B. Jones, Harry Potter (and now I have them in hardcover as well), Magic Tree House, Magic School Bus, the list goes on and on. Same goes for me and scrapbooking. I want the Cricut die-cut machine, but I'm afraid if I get one, I'll be like my sister and think I need to have ALL of the fonts. (I guess it runs in the family?)

3. I used to be somewhat of a trouble-maker in high school. Actually it was really just with one certain teacher. My English teacher. She told me I was a "rabble-rouser". (According to Merriam-Webster that means "one that stirs up (as to hatred or violence) the masses of the people." That was probably right on target. I did HATE her. I think she didn't like me because I was involved in sports. One day in class, she accused me of talking (and I will tell you I wasn't the one talking in that particular instance) and she attempted to pull my desk to the front of the classroom. I planted my feet on the floor and she was not able to move my desk with me in it. She had fire spurting from her ears as she sent me to the superintendent's office. Well, the superintendent was the basketball coach, so how much of a punishment do you think that was?

4. When we go out to eat, I always order the same kinds of things. I'm afraid to be adventurous because I feel that since we don't get to go out and eat very often, I don't want to waste my meal on something that I might not enjoy.

5. I wish I could sing, dance and play musical instruments. I love to sing, but really stink at it. I wish my Mom wouldn't have let me quit piano lessons when I was young. (At the time I'm sure I would have been very difficult to live with if she hadn't let me quit). I can't dance. I never danced "fast" dances in high school. I am embarrassed to flail about in public. I guess it was a good thing I started dating Scott before I entered high school and didn't have to rely on school dances to find a date. I would still be single if that were the case.

6. I am in love with Webkinz. I want one of my own so that I can play on my own account and decorate my own rooms how I want and not have to be the subject of cruelty when Emma decides she wants to sell everything I've worked so hard to earn!

Now I am supposed to tag 6 people. As far as I know, I only have 2 friends with blogs, and one of them, Emily, tagged me. So, I will tag my other blogging friend, Kara.

Monday, February 4, 2008

So much for peace and quiet

What was I thinking yesterday when I thought I would get 3 hours of peace and quiet this morning? I guess I jinxed myself. Last night I wasn't really feeling the best, and since Scott had the Superbowl game on, I decided to take a bath and go to bed. I was in bed by 8:30 and asleep by 9pm. That is VERY unusual for me. I woke up at 1:30 a.m. and could NOT go back to sleep. I tossed and turned and had all kinds of things racing through my mind. I think I last looked at the clock at 6am, knowing my alarm was going to go off in 1 hour to get the kids up and ready for school. UGH! I stayed in bed a little longer than usual and thought I would let Scott get them up and breakfast fed. He did that and went outside to shovel the driveway as we got some snow in the night. He left for work and I got the kids dressed and then myself. While I was brushing my teeth I heard Brie ring the bell on the back door and heard someone let her out. I went downstairs and was going to pull the van out of the garage and let it warm up before taking the kids to school. Well, when I went into the garage, I noticed the garage door was already open. Then it struck me that Brie was out. I ran outside and saw her tracks in the snow and followed them just down to the neighbors and decided that I didn't have time to go tracking through the snow trying to find her. I ran back to the house and told the kids to get their stuff on and we needed to go because Brie was gone. Gage was the one who let her out and he felt terrible because he didn't pay any attention to the garage door being up. I called Scott and of course couldn't get him, so left him a voice mail at work as I am bawling and trying to find my tall snowboots. As I'm trying to get them out of the closet, my back spasms up on me. NICE! Just what I needed this morning. I finally get my stuff on and the kids in the van and I had a few minutes to drive around the neighborhood before I had to drop the kids off at school. After I dropped Emma off and was heading out of her classroom, I noticed she had her snowboots on. UGH! I asked the teachers what time she had gym and told them about our rotten morning and that I needed to go back out and look for the dog. Kathy told me not to worry about her tennis shoes, she would be fine for gym today. Thank goodness! So, I head back out and finally get a call from Scott and he is on his way home from work to start looking for her. I told him she had made tracks in the snow and that it might be a good idea to follow them. He took off through the snow as I drove around looking for her. He lost her tracks once, then found them again and was headed towards Washington Street, one of the busiest streets in Bismarck. He lost them again as they went out into the busy street. Some lady out shoveling snow told Scott she saw a black dog loose and there was a white car that had stopped, but she didn't know if they picked her up or not. I called the police station to report her missing, and now that she's registered AND has her own collar with her name and phone number embroidered into the collar, I figure she will turn up dead or alive. I went out to look some more and then decided I should just go home and check the messages and wait. There was a strange name on the caller ID, but no message, so I called the number back and got their voice mail. I left a stupid message telling whoever it was that we lost our dog and I was hoping they were calling here because they found her. I called a few more times and kept getting voicemail. Scott is now back at work. The guy calls me back finally. He says he found a black dog on a very busy street and she was nearly run over 3 times. He was taking some people to HIT to work. He made sure to tell me several times that she was almost run over and that he saved her from getting hit. I took that as a hint for reward money. I got directions to his trailer which was out by the Oasis, raided Scott's hunting money stash and took off to get this dog that I despise!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I finally found the place and they were outside either putting her in their van, or taking her out of their van, I'm not sure which. I went and thanked them many times and asked him if he would please take the money I had in my pocket. I lied, telling him I hadn't even thought about it before I left and this was all I had in my pocket but I wanted him to have it. He didn't hesitate and said, "OK." It was only $25, but I'm sure he could use it. I stopped by the school to tell Gage I found her since he was feeling so terrible that he was the one who let her out without looking to see if the garage door was up. He was coming out for recess just as I was walking up to the school and he said, "Did you find her Mom?" I told him yes we did and I had her in the van. He said, "Can I come and see her?" I told him if it was okay with his teacher he could. She said that was fine and after I opened up the back, he took about 1 nanosecond to see that it was her and he was off like a flash for recess. I guess he wanted to see for himself that she was okay. I have less than an hour left before time to get Emma from school, that is, if I can get out of this chair with my back in terrible pain. Maybe I can get some rest this afternoon?

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Crankday


I think I am going to rename Sunday as Crankday. Sundays always seem to be hard for us because typically we do things on the weekends and everybody goes to bed later than normal. The "fun" started on Friday. Emma decided she was going to make a fort in the living room (as you can see in the picture above). She used all of the kitchen chairs, nearly every pillow in the house and a bunch of blankets to build her fort. She was very proud of it and wanted desperately to sleep in it Friday night. I knew better, but I figured what fun is it if I never let them do these things. After we went to the hockey game Friday night and looked for a movie to rent (there weren't any good kid movies to go see at the theater, which was Gage's draw from the "Family Fun Box"). We ended up getting home around 9 or so and got the kids into their pajamas and attempted the campout in the living room. By 10pm I had had enough. Emma was so tired she could hardly keep her eyes open if she was still for any length of time, so she kept fidgeting about and constantly needing something, like a drink of water, night light, etc etc. Scott had fallen asleep on the couch while I sat there getting more and more mad at Emma for not going to sleep. Finally I had had it and got up and went to bed and threatened Scott he better not come to bed until the kids were asleep. I didn't even hear him come to bed when he finally did. Then our Saturday was very busy with dance class, hockey game, dance performance at the mall, Bobcats hockey game, Gage playing at intermission, etc etc. So, another late night. That brings us to today. Meltdown city! We are all tired and cranky and I can't wait til bedtime, which is going to happen as soon as the kids are out of the tub. Scott is bathing them as I type.
There are a few family happenings I want to mention. Thursday was my Dad's official start to his retirement. He told Mom Wednesday night, "I just don't think I'm going to get up to go to work tomorrow!" I hope they don't kill each other! HA HA! Especially since tomorrow is their 46th wedding anniversary! Congratulations Mom and Dad! I'm excited to see what the future of retirement holds for them. Also, my Mom told me on the phone that my niece, Sara, was accepted into dental school! Congratulations Sara!! I don't have all of the details, but I believe she is going somewhere in Southern Illinois? How exciting! She will be a wonderful dentist and at Christmas she talked like she was going to specialize in pediatric dentistry. If she wants some good practice, she can use Emma as her dummy. She would learn a lot trying to deal with her! :-)
I'm hoping for a quiet week ahead. Emma goes back to school tomorrow after being off all of last week for parent-teacher conferences. I will enjoy the 3 hours of peace and quiet I will have tomorrow morning! I hope you all have a wonderful week!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Cat "Scratch" Fever

Emma and Scratch


Gage's hockey team (green) on the ice at the Bismarck Bobcats hockey game.

Gage (center, green jersey, black helmet)


Gage waiting for the puck to come to him!


Emma, green shirt, just in front of Scratch, collecting hockey pucks on the ice.


Emma with her arms full of hockey pucks!


Gage has a nice collection of hockey pucks as well! (center, green jersey)


Emma (girly-girl at heart) out on the ice collecting pucks in her tights and skirt!


video


What an exciting night! Gage's team got to play hockey between the first and second periods during the Bismarck Bobcats hockey game tonight!! You can hear them announce his name in one of the videos if you listen closely! He enjoyed the chance to get out there and skate with Scratch, the Bobcats mascot! I took several pictures during the game, and during intermission when Gage and Emma went out onto the ice to pick up pucks after the "chuck a puck" game where fans buy pucks to "chuck" out onto the ice and try to get their puck(s) to land in the little tire out in the center of the rink to win $1000. (No one won by the way)


video

The game was loud and crazy and the Bobcats scored the winning goal soon after they went into overtime. They have a lot of fun activities during the game. They have a remote control blimp that they run during intermissions that flies around and drops coupons for free meals at whatever restaurant happens to be paying for advertising that night. Tonight it was Buffalo Wild Wings. The first time the blimp was out, Emma tried her hardest to wave it in our direction, and she was quite disappointed when it didn't come our way. The second time it came out; however, being persistent paid off. As she was nearly sitting on my shoulders waving her little arms off, the guy in control of the blimp must have felt my pain and guided the blimp right over us and Emma caught one of the coupons for a free kids meal at Buffalo Wild Wings. She was thrilled! And what a scam that is, to get families to come in and spend $40 to get a free kids' meal! Whatever works! The most exciting part for me was nearly getting knocked off the bleachers by another fan in attempt to catch a t-shirt that was thrown into the audience right in my direction! (I didn't get the t-shirt either, just in case you were wondering. If I hadn't just been taking pictures of the kids on the ice and hadn't had my camera in my hand, I could have put up a better fight!) Oh well, maybe next time! :-)