Saturday, November 29, 2008

I was born in the wrong era

So tonight we took a trip down to our local soda fountain. I am convinced that i was born 40 years too late. We bellied up to the bar and had our self a lovely root beer float made the old fashioned way by the soda jerk. It was a nice kick back and the kids had a great time. ....Ok, we did too.

We sort of stumbled onto it by chance. We had gone downtown Milwaukie thinking we were going to go to the tree lighting ceremony, but it turns out I got the date wrong. Hard to imagine I know.

Now I am glad I screwed up.

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Friday, November 28, 2008

Gobble Gobble!!

So I know I have been sort of letting my blog slide lately. This time of year is just so stinking busy I can barely find the time. But tonight I figured it was well overdue to put up some holiday pictures of our Thanksgiving.

My family always celebrates Thanksgiving on the Saturday before the actual holiday. It started many years ago when my Mom used to work a retail job and just couldn't do both the holiday and get in enough sleep to brace herself for black Friday too. Plus it has always worked nicely so there was no competition with in laws wanting that Holiday too. There has never been an issue of having to make several stops at different Thanksgiving dinners.

We had it over at my Mom's house in Battleground, Wa. The entire family came out and we even celebrated my Grandma's 89th birthday. We all made her something to commemorate the event. My mom and I worked together to make her a scrapbook chronicling her life. She was really tickled with it.

We ate, the kids had a great time playing with their cousins which are pretty close in age to them and we had a great day.

Then came the big day.

We did what we do every year. We all gather around the television in our Pj's and watch the Macy's parade.

Have I mentioned my utter annoyance with my furniture situation. We do not have enough seating in our family room, so everyone just piles on me in the chair.

Then we made up our vegetarian dressing and side dishes and headed over to my in laws in West Linn.

It was another great day. We visited and ate and I planned out my attack plan for black Friday. Also Bug got turned on to guitar hero. We all but had to pry it out of his hands.

This is the worst possible picture ever taken of my husband. Although he assures me he has worse. Here are some of the real pictures of our family Thanksgiving dinners.

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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Another fun day at the rink

So Bug was invited to a birthday party today at Oaks park skating rink. What I didn't realize is that on Sundays, they bring in an actual organ player that plays the Wirlitzer organ. It is this giant monstrosity that is attached to the ceiling in the center of the rink. Apparently this is one of the last working Wirlitzers in the US. Also the only functional organ in a skating rink left in the world.

It was a really cool little slice of what it must have been like in it's heyday. The rink was built in 1905 and has been operational since then. Only closing down for a couple months in 1948 due to a flood that damaged the wood floor. It was just a cool little afternoon.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Quote of the day

So Bug and I had some running around to do this afternoon and as I was checking out at a store, I suddenly got a mean craving for some Necco wafers. Now if you don't know what these are, they are a classic candy that has been around forever that sort of tastes like Valentine's sweethearts but less sweet and more chalky. They don't really taste like anything specific, but my Mom always had a roll of them in her purse so I grew a bizarre fondness for them.

When we got out to the car I shared a couple of them with Bug. He doesn't get candy very often so it is a big deal for him. He took a couple bites and then made a face. I asked him what he thought.

His reply...."it tastes like old ladies smell".

That about sums it up. I ate a couple more and concluded that they taste like lilacs and soap.

I still finished off the roll though.

There are starving kids in the world. I couldn't let them go to waste

Friday, November 14, 2008

Why -O Why -O Why -O did I ever leave Ohio?!

So if you notice the time stamp on this here post, you will notice that it is ridiculously early. Just a little after 6 AM to be exact. Why am I up and blogging this early you may ask. Because I am apparently a glutton for punishment. Here's my dilemma.

Last week Peanut discovered how to climb out of his crib. Something they all eventually figure out how to do. Once this skill comes into play, it time to get them out of the crib and into a real bed. I learned this lesson when Bug first learned how to climb out because it almost always invites an injury. The rail to the crib is chest high on me. So they have to be able to swing their pudgy little leg over that and jump (from chest high) to the floor. And pray that there are no sharp or pokey toys in their landing area. (Which is hardly ever the case) It usually ends badly.

So when Peanut hit this milestone, I thought "great time to ditch the crib and make the transition". So taking baby steps into this transition I took the front part of his crib off. So basically he just had a toddler bed that he could get in and out of. Then we put a little rail up so that he does not just fall out in the night. There was about 6 inches at the foot of his bed that he could get in and out of. This seemed like a great plan.... in theory.

Boy was I wrong.

Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!!!

We have had this set up for 3 nights now. He manages to still fall out of bed 3 or 4 times a night. Then wakes up confused as to how he ended up on the floor.

But the biggest flaw in this great plan is that he now has the freedom to get in and out of bed at will. This means when it's time to go to bed he needs to know it is bedtime time and that he needs to be quiet and go to bed. Unfortunately I am expecting rational logic from a 2 year old. That's my problem. Another flaw in this plan....he shares a room with Bug. So between the two of them they sit up and chatter like a couple of sorority sisters half the night.

I have asked, I have pleaded, I have threatened, I have begged...."please ,please be quiet and go to sleep!!!" (insert your own "or ______ will happen/you won't be able to do __/___will end up at the Goodwill/there will be no birthday this year!")

Over the years this issue has never really given me a lot grief. Bedtime has always been strictly enforced. There has never been wiggle room. It was absolute. But then came Peanut and the need to share a room. Bedtime is still enforced, but with him contained in the crib it really was not all that big of an issue. He and Bug would chatter and talk for about a half an hour and then crash. But now he has the freedom to get out and play. Which keeps Bug up far longer than he likes. Bug wants to quiet down and go to sleep and Peanut is not letting him. This is a major problem. Bug does not have to luxury to take a nap in the middle of the day like Peanut. So he is starting to act up in school mainly because he's not getting enough sleep at night.

But the biggest problem as of recent is not getting to bed. It's getting up at freakish hours and playing. Kids by nature are early risers. I am fine with that (mostly) as I am a morning person myself. But this morning Peanut woke up at 4:30 (yes AM) and decided he was bored so he woke up Bug to have someone to play with. Poor Bug just can't fall back asleep. Once he is up, he's up. I was able to shut their door and try to get back and catch just a couple more ZZZ's myself. But no go. Somewhere around 5, an argument broke out over a toy dispute (which in turn woke Sunshine up) so in order to save face (and at least let my husband sleep) I had to take everyone downstairs. Not happy.

So now I am faced with a dilemma.......How do other people do this whole room sharing thing? I feel terrible for Bug that he can never get to sleep through the night without being pestered by his siblings. I know each child having their own room is a luxury many kids don't know. Do you just put up with a couple years of sleep deprivation (by the whole family) and motor through it much like the newborn phase?

Also should I put the crib back together and hope Peanut has a major injury climbing in and out? I know that seems odd to take away a freedom that has been granted, but for the sanity of the rest of the family.

Any thoughts? Suggestion? Mind numbing drugs?

So for now I am just going to get the kids off to school and spend the rest of my day (drinking) beating my head against the wall.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Mmmm. Doughnuts.

So I got this hankering the other day for doughnuts. I was just too lazy to load up all the kids and run down to the store, so I found a recipe and made them myself. It really was not all that hard. Just sort of messy. Sunshine and I made doughnut holes (mainly because I didn't feel like rolling out the dough and using cutters) . They were no Krispy Kreme, but they were every bit as good as what you would get from Safeway. That and we had fun making them.

Here's the recipe if you feel so inspired.

Doughnut holes

4 Cups Bisquick
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp nutmeg
about 1 1/3 cups cold water

Preheat a deep pan on the stove top to 375-400 (I used a candy thermometer to judge) with about 4 inches of oil. (I used canola)

Mix all dry ingredients together in the mixer and slowly add enough cold water to form a stiff dough. (I threw in a little flour just so I could work with the dough without it sticking to my hands) Roll dough into balls about the size of walnuts. Drop balls a few at a time into hot oil and fry until golden brown. (about 2 or 3 minutes). Drain on a paper towel. While they are still hot and a little moist from the oil I rolled them in a cinnamon and sugar mixture to coat them but you could also do powdered sugar.

And voila!! Awesomeness on your counter top!

Also this is something that has many little jobs so you can get kids involved.

Sunshine was my cinnamon / sugar duster. She did a great job.
The end product. From start to finish this took about an hour and a half. But do beware....this makes a huge mess in the kitchen. But it was worth every bite.
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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Time to get your cute on

So I sent Sunshine up to her room this morning to clean it. She was up there for well over an hour and got little done. But she was quiet and apparently had a fun time. I also sent up some laundry for her to put away herself (one of her chores). I went up to check to make sure everything ended up where it was meant to be.

I soon realize that it is sort of breezy in her room. I pull back her curtains to notice that she has opened her window. This is a huge no-no considering her room is on the second floor and the huge string of kids falling out of windows lately. It's just not safe. All of my kids know this is completely not allowed. Not to mention, it's November and sort of chilly.

I look closer and realize Juanita the giraffe , her favorite stuffed animal is sitting on the window sill. But Sunshine being the little nurturer that she is had the good sense to put a hat and scarf on her. You know, in case she gets chilly.

I thought it was so cute I just had to share it.

Yes it is a pipe cleaner scarf and matching belt.


Also in case you are wondering, I did talk to her about the dangers of opening her own window. She knows how to work the lock on the window so it just needs to be a trust and obedience issue right now.

Monday, November 10, 2008

We partied like it was 1996

So one of my good friends Erin, (my friend that runs the daycare...see older posts) had her 30th birthday this week. It came and went and we tried not to notice too much. Mostly because we were trying hard to secretly mastermind the most epic of surprise parties of all time. Although I can't take credit for coming up with the idea. My other friend, Molly (Erin's best friend) came up with the plan and we just followed along because it sounded awesome.

Here's a little back story.

Erin had her first baby when she was 16. She was busy at home with him, so she didn't get to do a lot of the typical high school stuff. One of the things she always regretted was missing her prom.

Enter Molly and her genius ideas.

We gathered all of her friends (completely under the radar and without her knowledge) and put together a prom for her. One of her aunts had a pole barn they let us use out in the boonies (so we could be as loud as we wanted) we got a disco ball, lights and Rockstar was the DJ. Voila! Instant prom!

We also made it a requirement that we had to wear the closest thing to formal we had (If not formal) Although some stuck to that more than others :) We got a cheezy photo shoot backdrop and took pictures just like the real deal.

Erin's husband sent her out to get a formal dress because he was going to "take her out on the town" on Saturday night. She was a little suspicious, but had no idea what was waiting for her.

When she showed up we all jumped out and screamed surprise! She was really overwhelmed by the whole ordeal. But she really did love it.

We all had a great time and enjoyed the night. We even danced a bit to the awesome music of '96. Which by the way was a horrible year for music. In case you wondered. No good can come out of a mix filled with Boys 2 men and Chumbawumba.

It took a couple days to recover from all the "fun" but it was well worth it. Pretty much just how I remember my own prom.

Minus the jungle juice and cow tipping afterward.

Yes that really happened.

But that's another story for another time

Our awesome "prom" picture.

The November rain may have gone to our heads :) The guns and roses kind not the actual rain that falls in November.

Molly and Carl

Prom Queen Erin. The big birthday girl.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Get off of your tookus!!!

Quit griping!! Go vote right now.

No it's cool I'll wait.

I mean it go. Turn the computer off and drop off that ballot.

Run don't walk.

Ok I'm done.

Civic duty of the day. Done and done.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The October 32nd party

So last night Rockstar and I got to go to a real life grown up party. His band played a huge house party out in Damascas. It was a a lot of fun. There were 6 or 7 bands that played and everyone was in costume.

I only got a couple of crummy pictures, but really I sort of felt like the stage mom taking pictures, so I chose to enjoy the show rather than take pictures. That and I couldn't get very close to the stage because there was a pretty rowdy mosh pit in front and I didn't want to get sucked into it. (One of the hazards of a rock show)

My childhood best friend came up from White Salmon and her boyfriend were able to come up and go to the party with us too. It was really nice hanging out with her again. Although it was sort of a deja vu moment being at a rowdy party out in the boonies as this how we spent most of our torrid youth :)

A good time was had by all.

Any more disclosure of the events of the night and I fear I may tarnish my squeeky clean (like who am I fooling?) image you may have of me :)
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Saturday, November 1, 2008

All Hallow's eve! Muah ha ha ha!!

So last night was the big night. The entire day and night went off without a hitch. I sort of have had a love/hate relationship with Halloween since I had kids. On one hand it's fun to dress up and do the whole thing, but on the other hand the combination of the excitement mixed with large doses of candy makes for a meltdown of epic proportion. Times that by 3 and you wonder why we do this every year.

This year we smarted up. Bug has an allergy to chocolate and most types of food coloring. Also a sensitivity to white refined sugar. So pretty much all candy was out of the question. So to avoid a scene, we planned ahead and had a bargaining chip to trade for his candy. Rockstar had found a used video game at a rental store a while back for cheap, so he picked it up thinking we could trade the game for the candy so that it wouldn't be a huge ordeal.

Our plan worked like a charm.

We hit all the same spots we do every year. We started out at my Aunt and Uncle's house and then headed over to my in law's neighborhood in West Linn. We tricked, we treated, we wore ourselves out and were home in bed by 8.

The kids were super cute in their costumes. Bug was Ironman ,Sunshine a butterfly and as you all voted, Peanut was a penguin.

Everyone had fun, no meltdown to be had (mostly because we have a 1 piece of candy a day rule in place). It was really an enjoyable Halloween. The best one we have had yet.

Bug and Sunshine even went (mostly) inside the super scary house.If you have forgotten about this one, click here Maybe next year they will make it in to get the candy :) The people were really nice and talked to us.

All in all we had a great night. Now tonight comes the grown up party. Rockstar is playing a show and I actually get to go to this one. Usually I have to stay home with the kids but Grandma is taking all 3 for the night and giving me a night out. Yay for Grandma!

Who liknks to me? Ask me how....just kidding. Just click here.