26 February 2010

swoop

Yesterday, I was sitting on the couch in the middle of the afternoon watching Big Bang Theory Season 1 and eating leftover chocolate frosting out of the can.

Thank you, pms.

Suddenly, there's a black blob flying in the room.

Thinking at first that we were just seeing things, the kitten goes back to her luxurious life of napping and I scoop up more frosting. But then it happened again.

And this isn't just any flying, but flying so low, I'm afraid whatever it is will make a nest in my hair.

I grab the cell phone from the coffee table, run into the den and slam the door closed. Dialing my husband at the office, the conversation goes something like this:

J: "Yes, dear?"

Me: "It's either a bird or a bat and it's flying around the living room!!!" (Got straight to the point on that one!)

J: "Could you tell which?"

Me: "I'm holed up in the den and I didn't stop to examine it, thankyouverymuch." My voice is now nearing a pitch I'm pretty sure only dogs and my husband can hear.

J: "Okay, all you need to do is get the broom, wait for it to stop flying and kill it."

After taking a second to remember that, thanks to what the boys call a "Secret Passageway" I didn't need to leave the den to get the broom, I have the broom in my hand and am sorta not really not at all prepared to do what I have to do.

Yep, till I open that door all of about 2 inches, see the kitten on top of the television chattering away at the intruder and realize that it's STILL FLYING around the room.

I slam the door shut again and inform my husband in perfect dog pitch that I can NOT under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES get close enough to that thing to kill it.

He then offers to call and see if our neighbor, Chuck, is home and if he can come over and remedy my situation.

Thank goodness Chuck was home and willing. It was getting close to time for the boys to arrive home and they don't need to see me in the fetal position on the floor of the den.

I've left the back door open thinking Chuck would arrive that way, but he comes to the front. I close the door behind me in my panic and for a second think that we are locked out.

My brain had gone to Tahiti, obviously.

Once we go around to the back of the house and get in, I handed Chuck the broom, scooped up the kitten and went into the den. Three smacks of the broom and the back door opened and closed.

The job was done.

Of course, Jon was still laughing at me when he arrived home around 45 minutes later.

He will pay.

25 February 2010

it's so great...




to be EIGHT!


Happy Birthday, Caleb!


"For You formed my inward parts; You knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made...Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in Your book were written, every one of them." Psalm 139

23 February 2010

Ah, Thursday



You can join in the fun over at SupahMommy's!




22 February 2010

on the menu Monday

Breakfast Pizza
1 roll pork sausage
1 can refrigerated crescent rolls
1 cup hashbrown potatoes, thawed
3T. each diced red or yellow pepper OR thin sliced green onions
1 cup shredded sharp cheese
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3 T. milk
1/2 t. salt AND 1/2 t. pepper
* Preheat oven to 375.
*In large skillet, brown sausage over medium high heat until no longer pink.
* Separate rolls into 8 triangles; place into lightly greased 12" rimmed pizza pan with points toward the center. Press together, sealing perforations, making a circle 1" bigger than pan bottom. Turn edges under to make a slight rim.
*Sprinkle cooked sausage over crust; top with veggies, if desired and sharp cheese.
* Stir together eggs, milk, salt and pepper and pour evenly over pizza.
*Sprinkle with the parmesan cheese.
*Bake 20 minutes, until crust is golden and eggs are set.
*Enjoy!!

19 February 2010

Seven Quick Takes Friday




1. Ever have your kid say something that had you cracking up and think "I have to write that down so we remember."? That was me this week. Except do you think that I actually took the time to do that? Nope. And now my swiss cheese brain can not remember what it was he said for anything! Figures.


2. We're following Bob Barker's advice today. Dina won't be happy about that, but Jon sure will. She's almost 9 months old and already been in heat once, and Jon wanted to put her out in the snow....he has no tolerance! haha. So, I'm taking her in this morning and we'll pick her up tomorrow morning after our breakfast date.


3. We had lunch with friends from Illinois this week and it was fun. Too short a time, but fun! And I got my fix of that adorable baby of theirs, whom I affectionately call "Hitler". Since he's so demanding of his poor mother and her time.


4. I (should) have a video clip to share with you next week of Matthew's first solo/ensemble performance. He worked very hard and he did great!


5. As his teacher and I and frankly, anyone who knows him can attest, Caleb talks from the minute his eyes open till the minute they close at night. Gee, I wonder where he gets that?!? On Thursday morning, literally the first thing he said to me was "Mom, is my birthday this week, or next week?" When I said "next week", he said "oh, good!" I don't know what that means, haha.


6. Since I've been thinking about it for months, after a little extra encouragement from my friend, Missy, I've decided that I'm going to teach myself how to sew. My mom and my mother-in-law are both amazingly talented in that area, and my Mom even helped me make my Easter dress when I was in the sixth grade. I always wanted to be able to do more, so after thinking about it for a very long time, I'm taking the plunge. We're getting a sewing machine this weekend and I am SO excited!!


7. I'm glad it's the weekend, aren't you? For once, we don't have anything "extra" to do this weekend; or rather, it's Matthew who doesn't, so nobody has to chauffeur him anywhere! It's the first weekend in about four, so I know that he's looking forward to catching up on some missed sleep.


Have a great weekend!

Read more Quick Takes at Conversion Diary

18 February 2010

really

In an effort to keep you updated, I need to tell you that Jon was called back to work this week.

While I am beyond grateful that it eases some financial burden; it makes things around the house infinitely more difficult.

Having him away from home almost 12 hours a day is hard on all of us. And the transition from him being home full-time to back to work full-time has been harder than I imagined it would be.

Things could definitely be going more smoothly.

16 February 2010

attention deficit



You can join in the fun over at SupahMommy's!







15 February 2010

on the menu Monday

Pasta e Fagioli with Sausage*




1 T. olive oil
1.5 pounds sweet or hot bulk Italian sausage
1 large carrot, finely chopped
2 to 3 ribs celery, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 t. dried Italian seasoning blend
salt and pepper
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (trust me on this, you'll get plenty of salt later!)
one 15 oz. can cannellini beans
½ cup small pasta, such as ditalini (I used macaroni..it's what I had..worked fine)
grated parmesan cheese for serving


In soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Crumble the sausage and cook, stirring until browned. Add the carrot, celery, onion, garlic, bay leaf and dried seasoning; season with salt and pepper. (I used 1t. salt and ½ t. pepper.) Cook until vegetables are softened.

Add the chicken broth, beans and 2 cups water, cover the pot and bring soup to boil over high heat. Stir in the pasta, lower the heat and simmer to al dente. Discard the bay leaf.

Serve soup with a drizzle of olive oil and lots of cheese. Serve with crusty bread.
Enjoy!

*originally published 3/2/2009

13 February 2010

Six Word Saturday


It's that time again! Join the SWS carnival hosted at Call Me Cate by clicking here.

My six words:

Good or bad, things are changing.....
Hang on, it's gonna get interesting around here!


12 February 2010

Seven Quick Takes Friday #5

1. What a challenging week it's been. Jon had several job prospects at the beginning of the week and by Wednesday, they were gone. To say that I wasn't discouraged would be a lie; but we're down but not out. He's still looking in his field and it has only been three and a half weeks! Although some days, it seems as though it's been much longer.


2. Owning an older home is nothing if not challenging. It's been very dry in here, and try as they might, two small humidifiers really can't keep up. Thinking we were going to install a whole house humidifier with some of our tax return, we spent a chunk of money a couple of weeks ago at Home Depot. Guess what? The directions are backward. And when we had to call the company that had installed our furnace, he couldn't install the humidifier without more components. More parts= more money spent and that just doesn't work right now. So, we've boxed everything up and made a return trip to Home Depot. I wish I could get my brother to come over from MI and take care of it. It's just another project that we were sure we could complete and that hasn't been the case.


3. Caleb's had a pretty good decent week at school. I hesitate to tell you that; because it seems as though the minute I put it out there, he has had a horrible day (yesterday) and I have to take it all back. I'm trusting him this time; we'll see how that goes. I wish I knew what was going on with that kid. Three wonderful days and then one day where nothing is right. Man.


4. Speaking of Caleb, he turns eight this month. Man, I don't know how that happened at all. He was looking forward to getting out of a booster seat, but as of yesterday, he's about 7.5" too short. Maybe he can get to 80 pounds before he still has to be in a carseat at twelve. He's disappointed about that.


5. Anyone else looking forward to the start of the Winter Olympics? I'm so excited that it's kinda scary. Opening ceremonies, from figure skating and bobsled to downhill skiing, I love it all.


6. I won't complain about the fact that we got more snow this week, since we are not located in any mid-Atlantic state where they have the right to complain. I'm just really looking forward to being able to open the windows and let the fresh air in!


7. Matthew's away at a quiz meet this Saturday, will play in the brass ensemble for church on Sunday and then participate in his first Solo and Ensemble through the school this coming Thursday evening. Whew. Makes me tired just thinking about it!

Have a great weekend!

11 February 2010

friends

Some time ago, my friend Missy over at Are You There, God? It's Me. gave me an award. I remember thinking about how nice of her that was to award me, and I thanked her. Then, in my classic fashion, I forgot about it.

So, I need to pass it on.....






So, here goes. I hereby pass the 'Circle of Friends' award to:


** Esther over at The Mommy Diaries. She and I started out as just readers of each other's blogs. Then when we bought this house last year, we discovered that we lived only 2 towns apart. She's becoming a great friend!


**And Amanda over at 'Popp'ing out one letter at a time. We haven't had the chance to meet in person yet, but she lives in the same town as my best friend, so hopefully soon. She's got adorable kids and a great blog!

Thanks, ladies, for letting us into your lives for a little bit of time each day!

09 February 2010

mish mash

I woke at 4:30 and couldn't really decide whether to post a Thankful Tuesday or a Post-It note Tuesday, so you're getting both.

Lucky you. heeheehee

First...the thankful....


I am more thankful than ever for our church family. As much as the little things get on my nerves, our little church family means everything to us. We've felt that they have lifted our family in prayer and we're very humbled to be so loved!


Not every day has been the "best day EVER", but I'm thankful for this extra time with my husband. Things could be changing very quickly, as in the next few days, to where he is back to being away more than he is home. So I'm trying to soak in every second of the time we have right now.


And now, the Post It.....



08 February 2010

good advice

HOW TO STAY YOUNG

1. Try everything twice. On one woman's tombstone she said she wanted this epitaph:
Tried everything twice...loved it both times!


2. Keep only cheerful friends.The grouches pull you down.
(keep this in mind if you are one of those grouches)


3. Keep learning: Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain get idle.
'An idle mind is the devil's workshop.' And the devil's name is Alzheimer's!

4. Enjoy the simple things.


5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. And if you have a friend who makes you laugh,
spend lots and lots of time with HIM/HER.


6. The tears happen: Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves.
LIVE while you are alive.


7. Surround yourself with what you love: Whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever.
Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.


9. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next county, to a foreign country, but NOT to where the guilt is.

10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.



11. Forgive now those who made you cry. You might not get a second chance.

06 February 2010

Six Word Saturday



It's that time again! Join the SWS carnival hosted at Call Me Cate by clicking here.
My six words:
Eat ICE CREAM for breakfast today!

05 February 2010

A(nother) Celebration of Followers!





hosted by Midday Escapades, One 2 Try, and Hearts Make Families. It's a fun carnival to increase your blog followers and find new and interesting blogs to follow yourself! It's about sharing and having fun!

04 February 2010

burst ***UPDATED***

***My sincere apologies for the video not playing this morning. And as we were away until about an hour ago, I had no idea. Thanks to those who let me know so that I could change settings!!***

As I mentioned in this post, Matthew was selected for Honors Band this year.
Among the standing-room-only crowd, if I'd had buttons, they'd have burst. I was really proud of him and all the students from his school who worked so hard to make the concert great.

Being a Honors Choir girl myself, I got particularly emotional when the choir started to sing their first piece. Those are some great memories that I have of the concerts that I was selected to participate in way back when......good times.

I have a video piece to share with you. Now, I know that sometimes when it comes to video, less is more, and for all the other pieces of music, I took clips that were less than 30 seconds in length. But this was the last piece, and the piece that I had heard most often coming from the bedroom...so I chose to hang on and get the entire song.


Trust me when I say that Matthew is seated on the left, about the center of the screen. That's our boy!

Please enjoy "Military Escort" performed by the Eastern Valley Conference Middle School Band.

03 February 2010

back in the saddle again

Having Jon home full time for the last twelve work days has been interesting. To say that it's kinda thrown me off my game would be an understatement.

To be fair, it's his game that got cancelled, but this is about me that isn't the point of this post right at the moment.

Seems that I have a bit of a hang-up when it comes to exercising. I like to workout when I am the only one here. Well, besides the kitten. I don't like anyone to be watching me, asking what I'm doing, or commenting on how I could be doing it better.

Not that Jon does any of those things- except that first one.

I had a pretty consistent date with my treadmill for about three weeks. I had figured out a good speed that didn't hurt while I was doing it, but still seemed to put me in the "zone" for burning calories.

I was losing weight and feeling great.

Getting interrupted killed that, you know.

How many workouts have I done in the last twelve weekdays? All of two. I admit, I suck. But no more. I'm back at it again today, armed with my bottle of Tylenol Arthritis for the aftermath.

I gotta.

By the way, just think good thoughts for Jon this afternoon. He has an interview for a position that, I think he will take as long as the company can come close to his salary requirement. It sounds as though it'd be a good fit for him. I'll keep you posted on that as much as I can.......

02 February 2010

Morning Observations



Here's my very first installment of Post It Note Tuesday.....you can join in the fun over at SupahMommy's!









thankful Tuesday- speechless

01 February 2010

on the menu Monday

Hungarian Goulash


Prep Time 20 Minutes
Cook Time 2 Hours


Ingredients


•¼ cups Vegetable Oil
•1-½ pound Onions, Coarsely Chopped
•1-½ pound Beef Stew Meat
•6 ounces, weight Can Tomato Paste
•1-½ teaspoon Salt
•1 Tablespoon Paprika
•1-¼ cup Water
•12 ounces, weight Package Noodles

Preparation Instructions

1) Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2) Heat a 2-3 quart Dutch oven over medium heat. Add oil and onions, cook for about 5 minutes. Add stew meat and cook over medium heat until meat is no longer pink.

3) Add salt, paprika, and tomato paste, mix until well blended. Add water and mix well.

4) Cover the pot and allow to cook in the oven for 2 ½ hours. Stir once during cooking, add additional water if necessary. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.

5) Prepare noodles according to package directions. Serve goulash over hot noodles.


***Here are some notes of mine...... I dredged the meat in flour mixed with salt, pepper, garlic powder and smoked sweet paprika before browning. Then I added a tablespoon or so of worchestershire sauce to the pot. And I also used beef stock rather than water.


Next time, I will cook it for an aditional half hour or so...the meat was tender, just could have been a bit more tender. And I also added a half cup of sour cream to the pot once the noodles were cooking, just to cut some of the strong tomato flavor.


And this is one of those recipes that is even better the next day, or the day after that. So yummy! Enjoy!!***