Wednesday, August 26, 2009

My ordinary life...

On Monday the kids and I ran errands. It is a daunting task with 4 kids in tow, but this particular day was going really smooth. We were in and out of a lot of little places like the bank, post office and even went to follow up appointment for Leanne's knee. While we were in the car we were laughing and talking, singing to the radio and listening to Adventures in Odyssey (which I just learned about this year at the home school convention. Thanks Lis!). We were having such a great time as I was driving I started to tear up and think of how lucky I am. I was planning this great blog post on "loving the ordinary" or something like that. The title was a work in progress:)

Fast forward to Tuesday... I had a doctors appointment for Justin that I really wanted to go to alone. So I asked a friends to take my other kiddo's to the park with her and a few other ladies from our home school group and I would meet them there after our appointment. I will be repaying her by babysitting on Thursday. It was a win, win for both of us. I arrived at the park at just about the time I told her. We stayed several more hours. The kids had a great time playing and I had a great time chatting with my mommy friends.

I thought the day was going great until it was time to leave. Katie got into the car seat with no issues and we were on our way. That is when we noticed the smell. It was terrible to say the least. I asked Katie if she had an accident and she admitted she had.

At this point I feel like I need a little back story. Katie is terrified of public restrooms. I think it is something I taught her and I do not know what to do to change it. She is deathly afraid of automatic flushing toilets and will leave the restroom if she spots one. She also doesn't like portable potties, old restrooms, restrooms with toilets that flush "too loud" and she despises dirty restrooms. I am with her. I do not like them either, but she has to go somewhere. Most of the time it is outside in the grass. What's a desperate mom to do!? But she can not go #2 outside. No way! So she held it, but didn't tell me.

Now back to the story. She had an accident because "those restrooms were disgusting" and she could not use them. So here I am 40 minutes from home, no wipes, a child who will NOT go into a public restroom and no gas in the car. I found the nearest gas station and ended up cleaning her up in the car with the blue paper towels you use to wash the windshield. I threw her clothes in the trash because sometimes there is no other option. For the record she was not wearing gymboree:)

When we got home I hurried and gave her a bath and went to start dinner. Only to start dinner I needed to unload last nights dinner dishes and load up the dishes I left in the sink from breakfast. I also needed to dispose of the baked beans that never were from the night before. I didn't want to put them into the trash because well... my sweet dog is not so sweet. She counter surfs and tips the trash can all of the time. The only rational thing to do with the rock hard beans was to put them in the garbage disposal. Wrong thing to do! I ended up clogging the sink. Not a problem, Chad should be home from work any minute. Nope! Of course he was working late. I figured it would be fine, so I started the dishwasher (which filled the sink) and began to prepare dinner. I was browning the cube steak and already had the green beans boiling, when I noticed the suds. Suds from what you ask? Katie had filled my dishwasher cup a few minutes earlier with liquid dish soap. I thought I got most of it out. I was wrong. A little dish liquid makes a lot of suds in dishwasher. I just let the dishwasher run, since the suds were not covering the kitchen and finished getting dinner ready. I put the steaks in the oven after I sauteed mushrooms and onions and made a beef gravy. I was so excited to make such a nice dinner for Chad. We have been eating kid food for weeks. I knew the steaks needed a lot of cook time to get tender, but I was out of time. I decided to crank up the heat a little and let it go. I boiled some potatoes and when I went to mash them I discovered I was out of butter. Those who know me in real life know this was very upsetting for me. I always have a stockpile of the necessities. There was no way I was taking 4 kids to the grocery store at this point, so we would have to have green beans and mashed potatoes with no butter. Yum! Flavorless side dishes. What goes great with flavorless side dishes? You guesses it! Burned cube steak. Cranking the oven to 450 does not cut the cooking time, it burns your food. We ate our flavorless, burned dinner and no one said a word about it. What a day! Gotta love the ordinary!

Friday, August 21, 2009

A pictureless blog?

I have good news and bad news.

Bad news first:
I am still having camera issues.

Good news:
I know what is wrong with it. However it is very expensive to fix. Almost as much as a new camera. I am praying for the funds to replace or repair it.

I have been using Leanne's camera all summer so I do have pictures to post. She just has no clue where the cord to plug it into the computer is. It is probably with her I-pod, lost in her room. We will keep looking or put them on a disk. I hate to not have pictures of my cuties to post. I am working on it!

Many hands make light work

At this very moment I am up to my eye balls in green beans, zucchini, tomatoes, potatoes and one tantrum throwing 4 year old whom shall remain nameless. When my dear hubby came home from his parents yesterday with some of the yield from our family garden I was so overwhelmed. How was I going to preserve all of this in the next day or so while it is still fresh? I called the one woman I know who can work hard and be paid in vegetables. My grandma! Now grandma is in her 70's but she can seriously work circles around most people I know. She is so spunky and fun to be around.

Grandma arrived a few hours later ready to work. We had 15 gallons of green beans to snap, string, blanch and freeze. We also have potatoes to get put up for winter, zucchini to shred and freeze and tomatoes to stew and can. We got the potatoes put up and all of the beans done. Today we will tackle the tomatoes and the zucchini.

Stringing those beans took HOURS! It was such a daunting job. I can not imagine having to do it alone. Grandma and I were sitting across from one another at my kitchen table stringing the beans and talking. She was telling me stories of her childhood and retelling the stories I hear over and over about when my mom and her siblings were young and stories of when my cousins and I were young. Although these are stories I have heard hundreds of times I was glad to have the chance to hear them again. To see the sparkle in my grandmas eye when one of my kids would stop by the table and say "great grandma please tell us that story about mom again." and she would. Such a priceless memory for my children.

At one point I said "next year I am planting beans that don't need to be snapped!" To which my grandma replied "Lace, sitting here snapping these beans with you is the best part." By God's Grace next year I will be sitting across the table from my sweet grandmother snapping beans and listening to the same stories I have heard hundreds of time.

The man with a mustache

On Wednesday my friend Sarah and I went to Cosi (a children's hands on science museum). For added fun we took my 2 boys and their friend Seth and Sarah's 4 boys and their friend DJ. Princess Katie also tagged along to keep the boys in line the way only a bossy 4 year old girl can. That's right folks.... 8 boys and one 4 year old girl. Sounds great. Right!? With the exception of a few small bumps, bruises and hurt ego's (there was way to much testosterone) it was a really great day. We stayed much longer than I anticipated. I actually told Lisa when I picked Seth up that morning "we will only be there a few hours.". We were having such a great time we stayed 6 hours.

This intro brings me to the story of the man with the mustache:

Cosi is located downtown in our city. Like every downtown city I have been to, ours is surrounded by a not so great area. These areas are filled with many colorful personalities. One of which was up bright and early perusing the parking lot of the children's museum. This person was a middle aged fellow who wanted to see if he could scare a few bucks out of the suburban, mini van driving mom's who frequent such places on weekday mornings. As I got out of my car and was setting up the stroller (yes Katie still loves her stroller, but that's another post) I heard this gentleman shouting things at the mothers and asking for money. When my kids wanted to know what he was doing and why he was talking the way he was I must have muttered something along the lines of "I think he has been drinking or is on drugs" and we hurried along for our fun filled day.

When we left the museum a mere 6 hours later we thought little of the man in the parking lot. We were talking about the great time we had and where we were going to get a treat. As we settled on McDonald's sundaes Seth shouts "Ms. Lacy there is the man from this morning and he is sleeping on the sidewalk!". We were a few miles from the museum at this point and sure enough there was the man. He was in fact sound asleep on the sidewalk in front of a convenience store. Being the moment seizing type mom I am I quickly decided to use this as a teaching opportunity. I say to the kids "This is the kind of thing that happenes when you drink!" "You think you are having fun and then all of the sudden you are putting your life in danger." I then start rattling off some dangerous things that could happen to him.... he could be hit by a car that runs up on the sidewalk (I was stretching a bit), someone could run him over with a bike, a dog could attack him, he could be robbed, etc....

At this point Justin my sweet, innocent 8- year-old boy said:

"Or, someone with a permanent marker in his pocket may come along and draw a mustache on his face, tie some string to his arms, and pretend he is a puppet!"

He was completely serious! We all laughed and I think Seth said it best when he said "Justin, buddy, you are on of a kind!" And he is.

If only we could all think like an 8-year-old boy. The world would be a much safer place. We would likely all have sharpie mustaches, but safer we would be!

Monday, August 17, 2009

I am back

I am blogging from my brand spanking new LAPTOP!!!! Yeah. With all of the back to school sales we could not pass up the chance to replace the 10 year old PC I have been using. I am embarrassed to admit I was still running windows 95. Which I have been told by our Internet provider many times is "no longer a supported operating system". I do not have ton of bells and whistles but this thing does more than I need it to. It is fast and sometime today I should be surfing the net in my kitchen. As soon as I figure out how to work this wireless router. With 4 children I should have a good shot at at least one of them working on computers right? Momma needs help!

I have a ton of catching up to do. I will be going back and hitting on some fun parts of our summer. I am so excited I will be able to upload new pictures again. I know a blog is no fun without pictures.

I did it, I did it....

I signed my baby girl up for pre-school. Katie is somewhat excited about it... I think. I, on the other hand, am sick to my stomach just thinking about it. Actually, I am on the the verge of tears typing this, OK, so I'm crying! Where did my baby girl go? How did she grow up so fast? Can I do it? Can she do it? She will be fine. She will make new friends. She will learn new things. Stay tuned to see if I actually leave her there. We have a history of pre-school drop outs. Justin quit after just one day and Cameron made it less than a week. As Lisa would say I am a little soft:) Wish us luck and pray I am the only one leaving the school crying on the first day!