Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

We will be ringing in the New Year at the Fallons, well if we make it to midnight ;)

My big plans for tomorrow and Friday include my family, a fire and cozy clothes. Ryan heads back to work on Saturday night, the kids to school on Monday, so I am planning to cram in the most quality time I can.

I hope the New Year is a good one. There will be many changes, and I hope they are for the good. The usual suspects, health and money are key concerns, and under health I list sanity!

Happy New Year all, may 2009 be filled with joy and happiness.

Family fun times 2

So we realized that a certain store the girlies have gift cards for is going out of business while at the mall, with no gift cards. Em and her girls are coming over, she is leaving Declan here with Ryan and Gray and we are heading down to do the girl thing. Being that the options are limited, and everything is 50% off, all four girls should get a ton of junk for the 70 bucks in gift cards.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Super duper family fun day

Yes that is right, the whole tribe is venturing out into the big world for a day of family fun....if we can get ourselves motivated :)

We will eat lunch at home I think, then off to the bank (OK that is only fun for the grownups), then we will go to Friendly's for ice cream to give us energy, then to the mall so Grayson can use his Build a Bear gift card and the girls can use their Claire's gift cards, I think Ryan will use his Teavana gift card his lovely wifey got him too! Then a nice drive to the farm to gather our milk, then home to play the Wii and watch movies and hang about. Super fun, if only everyone would get dressed!

Monday, December 29, 2008

What a nice afternoon

The whole family did some cleaning and we have had a really nice afternoon. Not having work or school, I have actually taken some time to relax. I could get used to this!

Breath

We are trying to clean up the aftermath of Christmas and a week of company, and the tribe is revolting. I just want to make a dent, heavy duty work will happen next week when they are back at school and I am still off work. For today, I need to finish the cleaning and start undecorating which is so depressing. I also need to fold a million loads of laundry, bleck.

On the positive side, I hope to get granola made today if I have enough honey and I am making a nice dinner of pork roast, some of our canned apples, potatoes, veggies and popovers...mmm. Tomorrow I promised the kiddos that we could go to the mall so they can spend some of the gift certificates that are burning holes in their pockets. We are also running to the farm, so if I am out of honey I guess I can get some there.

If only I could inspire them to get moving.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

An empty house

All the company left, and I am more than relieved! A full week of people is just too much and makes me tired and crabby! I am not sure what will happen when MIL is here full time, but having to be on good behavior is draining and depressing.

For now, I will sit here at 4 am and wish my husband would stop snoring and that we all will make it to church in the morning. I really want to go there, maybe get lunch out as a family, come home and veg for the day. The cleaning up of the house can begin Monday, along with the undecorating and packing up of Christmas goodies. For tomorrow, church, my family and rest, that is all I want.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Year's resolutions

We are getting close to that infamous time a year when everyone makes goals and promises that they cannot meet or keep. Me,I try to make changes at odd times of the year, there is a lot less pressure. However, we are gearing up for some mega changes here in our tribe, so I feel there are some goals I need to work on.

The first is patience, and I need a wagon full of it! I have a lot going on, and sometimes I skim over the positive and only see the negative, or I don't even stop to process it all. I really need to work on this, and I am really trying...I practiced all day yesterday on my mother in law!

Letting things go. OK, so I cannot let much go since most days are jam packed, and the chosen thing to let go is usually laundry. I need to let go not of tasks, but of feelings and events. I think there will be a purge post coming soon and then I will need to put all those bad feelings to bed.

More local, more organic, more from scratch. We were doing so very well, and then fall hit and Haven was going through her diagnosis, and things just never settled into a comfortable routine. I need to cook more from scratch, it should be seven days a week and we are only at about five. I need to depend more on my stockpile and work to add to it even during the winter months. Ryan and I will be planning the garden next week, so once that is together I will share. Again we will only grow organically, and I am hoping for a bigger success this year.

I need to source new farms and suppliers. There is more we can get locally, such as grains, and I need to locate a source! I also need to bake more bread, I am hoping once the company leaves that I can get back in the habit of baking 2 loaves a week. It is just so much better for everyone. We also need to make more granola so the kids have that as a choice instead of boxed cereal!

So those are some of my plans. Ryan and I want to do chickens, however I am not sure this is the year to start...more info on why coming soon.

Friday, December 26, 2008

New blog

OK, since I fear I will have a lot to say once my mother in law moves in, I created a new location to purge my thoughts:

http://survivingmymil.blogspot.com/

Visit at your own risk, it ain't pretty.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

They were very excited this morning

Can you tell?????





Merry Christmas from our tribe!

Its 2am on Christmas

and no the kids don't have me up :)

I have been sleeping so badly lately, so when I woke up, I just came downstairs so I won't bother anyone. Also, the wacky weather is making my poor skin dry and I am a bit scratchy. Ah well, maybe I will doze down here, or I will be taking a very long nap tomorrow :)

Here is to hoping there is a pile of prezzies under the tree and a glorious Christmas morning for all!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

I may need a new blog

So my mother in law is here and she is making me crazy. How am I supposed to survive when she lives here? I like doing my own thing, having space and running the house my way. She isn't bad, just throws a wrench in everything. I am just ready to cry and I think I will be starting another blog to give me a place to bitch and moan.

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Today is my husband's 32nd birthday!

He is a super dad and husband, and we are so lucky to have him in our lives. Happy birthday honey, we all love you loads and loads and loads!!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

UPDATE

We JUST walked in the door. I left here with the kids at 2:30 and the ride to the airport should have taken about and hour and a half, it took three. The ride home also took three plus a stop for the poor kids to pee. I deserve a medal.

Update, the eye is over

My Mother in Law (yes the one moving in) is such a mess that she MISSED her flight here. Yes she MISSED the flight that we paid for and booked and the airport is only 15 minutes from her house! My poor husband, who works overnight, stayed late at work to pick her up at 1 and I just had to call and tell him she won't land until 4. The airport is an hour and a half from our house and he works tonight and leaves at 9 pm....so when is he supposed to sleep?

So I told him to come home and sleep, I am waiting for the Comcast guy who will hopefully be here well before 3 when I will need to leave. I will need to pack all three kids into the car to drive an hour and a half north to pick up MIL to turn around and drive home in rush hour traffic. Sounds like a blast huh. Can we say annoyed?

We are sitting in the eye of the storm....

My parents left an hour ago, and my mother in law will be here in about 3 hours.The kids and I are enjoying the relative calm and quiet, they are playing, I have gotten some cleaning done and the Comcast guy is coming to make my new HD TV in my room work (thanks Mom and Dad!!!)

We are lounging in our jammies, enjoying a nice fire and just playing and relaxing. Tomorrow is my husband's birthday, so we will have a special dinner for him and then go to church. The following day is Christmas of course, and my brother in law and Kristien will be here that evening. They will be here a few days, and hubby is off work until January 3rd!!!

I guess I should put clothes on, the Comcast guy probably doesn't want to hang with me in my PJs. I am also going to start the soup for dinner, it should be smelling great in here soon!

Monday, December 22, 2008

The holidays are well underway

We have had my parents here since Saturday, and my sister was here that day as well. The kids have been having so much fun playing with Nana and Papa and I know they will be a little sad when they leave tomorrow, but no worries...Grandma comes in the afternoon! Then on Christmas Uncle Matt and Kristen come and we will have the Fallon's over with the whole crew on the 26th. A full week of Christmas and Hanukkah fun!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

It must be almost Christmas

because Grayson is sick! This is the third year in a row, and while last year took the cake with the hospitalization a week before Christmas, he still couldn't give me the year off! The kids all have had bad coughs for a week, so I didn't think too much of it. This morning he began having the coughing fits with deep wheezy inhalations...nice. So I gave him a breathing treatment, and after his treatment, he laid on the couch for an hour straight...hmmmm,not like my crazy busy four year old. He was all bundled up and I could see the blazing red ears, fever. He is now on Advil and feeling a bit better, but we will be on twice a day breathing treatments and looking for symptoms of severe asthma just to be safe.

Merry Christmas :)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Let the craziness begin

today begins our week O'Christmas. Everyone should be here around 3, so we still have a lot to do. Someone needs to go get the girlies who slept at Emily's and stop at the store for the four things I forgot yesterday. The whole downstairs needed a once over and a good vacuum. The upstairs needs a once over. I need to get cracking on the cooking, and then around 1,I will get everything set up on the pretty platters and all. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Need to really feel something?

Go on over to Casey's blog and watch the video. It is very moving and I am thankful that she shared. Hug everyone you love a bit tighter.

The worst thing that can happen

when you are motivated to scrub the house from top to bottom, is for the power to go out! We lost power this morning as I was just getting into the groove, and it has thrown me way off. I don't want anyone to misunderstand, I think I keep a clean home, sometimes a little more cluttered than I would like (thanks hubby and three kids for that) but albeit clean. Yet when my mother comes, we need a new level of clean, it needs to be sterilized and perfect. We live in our house, someone is always here, so there is always stuff about. Cleaning and organizing, while they fill my heart with joy, do not do the same for the rest of the tribe. They are not so helpful and have been known to mess up the very room I just cleaned.

Anyway, I have scrubbed the kitchen, and now have a mass of stuff to put away. I also have my oven cleaning, I hate my stove and am coveting a new one, but for this Christmas, I still have old unpredictable. Still on the list, to do some grading for FT school, do laundry, organize the extra stuff from the kitchen, vacuum both levels, clean the kid's bathroom, steam clean, clean up the mudroom and mop. Hopefully husband will jump on board and help out soon.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I am not an early adopter

but I made the switch to Facebook. Change and I are not good friends, but still I am trying. So far I like it, I found some old friends from HS and I had a lovely chat with Rachel last night, that alone is worth it!

Today I have Maggie most of the day, she has been partying all night with her poor mom and she has a nasty cough. It is better she be here with us instead of at the germy school in Killi and Declan's classrooms, plus they have CCD and I am sure an hour in the car will make Emily insane.

The best part of the day will be dinner tonight. I told Killi a few weeks ago that we should go to the Japanese steakhouse for her birthday...I was kidding, but she liked that idea and that is where we are going. It is so much fun to have ten people to celebrate together, I know the kids get a real kick out of it, so we will be enjoying yummy food for dinner!

Now I need to go do some work, this house needs a cleaning!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Today's update

OK, so the day did get better. When I went in to get Gray the kids were all inside a big train (The Polar Express) that they had walked all over the school in. They were super cute and Grayson was so excited that I saw him as the train!

Then we went to meet Maggie and Emily for lunch, but the place we planned on going wasn't open. It turned out great since we tried a new pub place, I think it was the Firken Bulldog(?) and the food was FANTASTIC!!!

I came home and gushed about how tasty the food was, and I am hoping to convince my parents to take us there for dinner on Monday :)

On our way home, Gray and I made a quick stop at the grocery store, then home to sit on our butts...well, I worked a little. I decided that the house cleaning can wait until tomorrow. I can get up and work before my afternoon crash at 2 and I am sure I will get a lot more done. All I need to do tonight is make dinner, help the girls make ornaments for their teachers and wrap teacher presents and put away all the clothes that were folded last night.

I just want to say

that so far today just totally blows and stinks and is in now way good.

I have already had a breakdown, and been hung up on during it, TWICE!

I have a raging headache which has made me sick to my stomach, and while feeling that way, I came home to dog pee on the carpet that I had to clean and a sink full of nasty dishes I had to do.

I have to be in my car in 15 minutes so I can do my work call from the car. I haven't eaten yet today nor have I taken anything for the headache, and I won't have time to. Then I will sit in front of the preschool, doing a work call, feeling like ass, so I can get my sweet son.

The end...and I quit.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Today is making me tired!

We had a busy day. Remember when I said I was going to stay home, clean the house and hang in my PJs all day? Nope.

Gray and I met Emily and Maggie for lunch (thanks Em!) then Emily had a meeting so the littles and I took off to go to the farm. It was doomy and gloomy so the ride was not fun, but the littles were good and we made it back safe and sound. When we got home, I baked off the cookies for Haven's class, and Emily and I tried out our new air popper (I got one for myself and one for Em for Christmas) and it was supper yummy!

Now dinner is cooking, work is done, and I still have a ton of work to do around here. Maybe tonight I will finally get all that laundry fold...hahahaha.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Odd sayings from my boy

He just came downstairs crying that he can't Feep (Sleep). So I sit him on the couch, and he says "I wish I had been born normal." I am not sure how to respond!

Making a dent

I got a number of items on my list done today, and my plan tomorrow is to just keep chipping away!

My big plans for tomorrow involve wearing my PJs all day, clean, do laundry and bake cookies. That is about it, except maybe I will make a decent dinner too since the family had leftovers tonight ;)

Buried alive

I am feeling as though the house today is eating me alive! It is messy, but not so bad that it can't be fixed, the problem is I am just so tired and yucky lately that it seems to be a much bigger task. Add to this that my parents and sister arrive Saturday, parents stay until the morning of the 23rd, then mother in law shows up that afternoon, and the rest of that side shows up late on Christmas. We will have a full week of company,and that my friends, is a lot!

So I have my list of to do's, and I will start cracking away at them. First and foremost is to switch laundry. Then I need to get the cookies ready for Haven's Girl Scout party. Then I must make the sugar cookie dough for the cookies for Haven's class,I want those done so I can finally clear the kitchen of all the cookie making paraphernalia. Also on today's agenda, dust the family room and straighten the living room, plus I must work early so I can head upstairs tonight when the kid go to be and fold fold fold clothes.

The task that is causing me the most stress is the wrapping of presents. Tomorrow I will take care of my hubby, niece, nephew, mom, mother in law and kid's teachers. Doing my kids is a problem. On Wednesday night, Ryan and I need to get an inventory and I need to gather all of the stocking stuffer things so I can figure out what is for Hanukkah and what is for stockings! Then we will probably wrap like crazy on Friday night since the girls are sleeping over at Emily's and Gray goes to sleep well. We will take stuff down, wrap it, put it back up, just like every year. The stocking stuffers get wrapped in tissue paper and each kid's stuff is bagged up separately to make it easy that night. Every year I dread the wrapping, it takes so long and is such a process, but I love the reaction on Christmas morning!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The soup is AMAZING

So I thought I would share the recipe. What you need: a chicken carcass, two cups cooked chicken, 2 onions, a few good handfuls of carrots,bay leaves, salt, pepper,a potato, butter, olive oil, half and half, half a lemon, flour, and an Uncle Ben's wild rice mix.

To make the broth, boil a chicken carcass in enough water to fully cover, with an onion cut in half skins still on, a handful of carrots, four bay leaves, salt, pepper and half a lemon (trust me on this.)

Boil and boil and boil until the broth is a rich color, smells amazing and has reduced by a third. Drain the odds and ends out and reserve the broth.

In a pot, add a good knob of butter and a swirl of olive oil. Finely dice an onion, peel a potato and finely dice and add both to the pot. Then cut carrots into bite size pieces and throw into the pool. Saute everything for about 15 minutes stirring well and don't let it get brown. Add a few pinches of kosher salt and a 1/4 cup of flour, cook all together well to create a nice roux. Add the broth back in and add your cooked chicken (I always have some in the freezer leftover from roast chicken). Cook on a low simmer for about an hour. Add in a cup to cup and a half of half and half, a few good turns of fresh ground pepper and the season packet from and Uncle Ben's wild rice box(ours was roasted chicken) Cook about 15 minutes, stir in the rice and let it all come together. Adjust seasoning as needed.

Make some baking powder biscuits and you are all set.

My cookie press hates me

and I think the fireplace does as well, both have been giving me a hard time today!

However, all the thumbprints are done as are the spritz cookies. Broth has been strained and is now becoming soup and is simmering away on the stove. Dishes are washing and while I am guessing the family won't be getting yeast rolls, they will get biscuits which will make them happy.

I am just ready to be done cooking, I feel like I spent the entire day standing in my kitchen, but the results are worth it. I still have more cookies to make this week, but they shouldn't be as time consuming.

Getting in the groove

OK, so I think I am starting to like this break thing! Right now all I have is FT school, which is a dream! It is not quite 11:30 here and my house smells fantastic. I have made 2/3 of the thumbprint cookies, this recipe makes somewhere near a million cookies, so it is a process. I also have chicken stock going on the stove. Later today that stock will become creamy chicken and wild rice soup and I will make yeast rolls to go with it. Homemade, healthy and good for little tummies.

The fire is going, the laundry is switched and half the house is vacuumed. Next in line are the dishes, mopping, spritz cookies and cleaning the downstairs bathroom. I feel like I have so much time!

Fevers, coughs and fluff!

So I thought for sure we would make it to church, I even had the kid's clothes laid out! Alas, this morning two kids woke up with nasty wet coughs and one woke with a fever. This is the third week in a row that we are not making it, but I keep trying and maybe we will make it next Sunday and on Christmas Eve for a double header.

So with a heap of sickies, I decided we needed a special breakfast. Sometimes I get them the packets of oatmeal that have chocolate or smores or some other disgusting breakfast combo, and these are a big treat. Usually they are stuck with the old fashioned slow cooked oats made by mama or daddy with raisins or apples or honey. So this morning they begged for the sweet packets, and I had none, but I saw that jar of Fluff. Needless to say they were very pleased when mama made the regular healthy oatmeal and then swirled a spoonful of fluff and added a sprinkle of mini chips to their oatmeal. Well, at least the good part of the oatmeal got in there and I did find a use for some of the fluff :)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Fluff

The other day at the grocery store I bought something I have never purchased in all of my adult life......Marshmallow Fluff. Not one jar,but TWO! What was I thinking? I don't eat peanut butter, so I wasn't planning to whip up fluffernutters! We always have marshmallows, so it wasn't for cocoa. Such a weird thing to buy, now I need to find a use for it!

We are progressing

So, the morning got off to a rough start, lost shoes, lost coats, lost tempers....

We made it to the school, all the kids were great getting their food and eating and Haven then went to warm up. The kids did excellent singing, and as a sappy mom, I teared up watching my big girl singing. Amazing how angry you can be at them one minute, and beaming the next!

After the singing was over, we headed into the book fair and each kiddo got a book, even Declan who was playing the part of a Kelley today! Headed back for the raffle, somehow missed when they called our name and left to drive Declan home. Surprise surprise when we came home and there was a prize waiting for us! Our kind neighbors dropped it off for us :)

I have already made a batch of meringues and I have a batch of sugar cookies and jam thumbprints chilling in the fridge. Soon I will begin cutting and baking the sugar cookies, I figure jam prints can wait until tomorrow.

Dinner tonight is super simple, I grabbed some pulled pork out of the freezer and will serve it with salad and homemade steak fries. Yummy!

Anyone else worried

that I have been up since 3 am?

Friday, December 12, 2008

First day off

So today was the start of my Christmas break. I still have FT school for a week and a half, but my classes and PT school are done!

So this morning after dropping Gray off, I went to two grocery stores to start gathering the goodies for the holiday company. I came home, finished my grading and went to pick up Maggie and Gray. Turned out Grant's mom was stuck at the doctor, so I grabbed him as well and took the three preschoolers home for lunch. They were really well behaved and played while I made meatballs for dinner and did some straightening. Em came with Killi, took the littles and left Killi to play, and she and Maggie should be back for dinner later.

All I have left to do are some postings and a little grading, plus I must get on making fudge and meringues!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Trying hard to slow down!

It is weird for me to have so much downtime!

Today has been quiet, and while I have a call and some papers to grade, I don't have much on my plate. Tomorrow I will finish my grading, do laundry, make more cookies and maybe start wrapping presents. While I am looking forward to the weeks off, it is sometimes hard for me to relax, but I am going to try!

The early bird

I woke up early this morning and decided to come downstairs and take advantage of the quiet. Soon enough the kids will be up and the morning hubbub will start. Two girlies need to eat, make lunch, pack up and get dolled up for school. One boy who will be sleepy and a little grumpy will need to eat and get dressed.

I got my morning work done last night, so I plan to take the wet ride out to the farm this morning to get the weekly milk. I am hoping the hubby will do the dishes, while I am gone, so that when I get back I can run to the doctor and grade some papers. Tonight I have a faculty call, but I only have to talk for a few minutes :)

PT school is over, well except for all the papers I need to grade! Tomorrow I will stay home and make cookies and do all sorts of good, homey, things.

Off to pull out a flank steak for dinner, we are having it on salad for supper. I should also get a jump on making the kid's lunches.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Oh the joys of rain

So I went to bed at 8:30.....to sleep at 8:30, and I still am sleepy!

I need to get off my butt and do the dishes and vacuum, then off to run some errands in the doom and gloom.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Goodbye old friend.....

Today,while making meringues, my trusty ole hand mixer died. I have had that mixer for 10 years and I remember buying it at CVS by our old apartment for 9.99. I loved that hand mixer, it worked well and it was small. Since its demise, I have had to break out my big stand mixer to make the sugar cookies, not that I don't like the stand mixer, it is just big and bulky and not as easy as the hand mixer. I guess I will start shopping around.

Snuggles and hugs

Gray and I have had a quiet morning. I did the dishes, we watched a movie and Grayson shared loads of snuggles and hugs. Then I made some more meringues shaped like Christmas trees with peppermint, a special request from Brittan.

We just finished lunch and I am going to start some laundry and sugar cookies. It has been a sweet and soft day, one that was much needed.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Already in bed

So it is 8:30 and I am snuggled into my bed. I am so happy to be warm and comfy, and soon I will drift off to sleep. A much needed early night!

Gone to trash

So Friday our trash can disappeared, which I thought was strange. I left a message for the trash company and they called back this morning and said we were six months behind....um, no. So I pulled up all the cleared checks and gave them the numbers and dates and am waiting for them to call back and tell me when I can have my trash can back. Here is the thing, I never knew there was an issue since there were no notices and no calls, if they had sent a notice, I would have straightened this out BEFORE they took my trash can away, but I thought all was swell since I paid the bill and they cashed the check.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Hot tip!

When you are usually spoiled and your husband gives baths/showers, you come to HATE them. Since hubby is ill, I knew I would need to do shower duty. Well first I needed to clean the kid's bathroom, see I never go in there so I don't see the mess they make, it is now clean.

First Haven got in the shower, no issue there. Brittan was next, she did swell. Then comes Grayson's turn. He doesn't like showers, he likes baths.... I hate giving baths.

So here comes the hot tip.....tell the four year old he is a baby elephant. We have a hand help shower thing, so he climbed in, and I sprayed his feet, then his tushie and worked my way up to his hair which is what he was dreading. It worked out great! He thought it was fun, it was super fast and I have a clean boy. Sad that this was the most exciting part of my day!

Another one bites the dust

Seems husband came home and has a sick tummy too. Super!

Plus he never stopped at the store, which meant I had to get dressed and go out in the bitter, windy cold.

Now I am back home and the kiddos are resting since they are all sick. I am going to start the pot roast in a little while, but I also need to make some meringues and a chocolate pudding pie-but shhh, don't tell the kids.

The whole lot is taking a sick day

We were supposed to go to church and then up to see my niece dance. We didn't and we aren't. This family is taking a much needed sick day since the kids are all coughing and I am all stomach achy.

We had a really fun visit with my two best buddies from high school, they are twins :) I got to meet Chelle's new hubby and step son who was as cute as can be, and it was so nice to see Diane and meet her beau, it really had been too long!

After they left, Chelle, Chris and Christian flew in on a red eye from Cali and were so wiped out, my crew and I headed to bed.

Today we will be in our jammies all day long. I plan to make meringues since the kids have been requesting them, and a wise woman suggested a pot roast for dinner. Aside from some laundry and house maintenance, I will be laying low all day.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Someone put me out of my misery already

I have been complaining of a stomach ache for awhile, and I really thought I knew why I felt so terrible. Yesterday it got worse and worse, and now I think I may have had or still have some kind of bug too. I felt so terrible last night that I took a pill for my stomach ache and went to bed. At 2 am I woke up and felt really, really awful. Husband got me another stomach pill and then I came down to suffer in the living room. I have never felt or been so sick in my life, and I think I finally fell asleep around 6 am. Now the house needs to be cleaned and I really cannot even get off the couch. The kids also have their flu shots and I need to get food for dinner tonight. Thankfully husband is helping me clean up.

Friday, December 5, 2008

All we need is snow

Somehow this morning Ryan and I got most of the outside lights done. We still need to hang the super huge wreath, but we are almost there. When I got home from work, the kid's helped pick up the house a little, they ate dinner and then we all decorated the tree. I am sitting in the living room enjoying the lights and all the memories the ornaments bring back for me. After the tree decorating, the kids were set up with A Christmas Story and cups of hot cocoa. I also got to work on a paper and peanut butter kiss cookies. All that is done, it is 9 pm and I feel yucky, so I am off to bed. Tomorrow will be a full day with flu shots, a trip to the grocery store and cleaning for my friend's arrival.

Sitting tight

So I am sitting at PT school while my class takes their final. I have to say I really enjoyed having a smaller class, we only had 21 in here versus the usual 50. I felt I got to know the students, and I know that they learned a lot.

I still have a yucky tummy and sitting here working on grading is not helping. I also know that I need to stop at Target on my way home and that may be a nightmare. All I want to do is curl up in bed, but we have to decorate the tree and I need to clean up the house and on and on and on. Oh I need a day in my PJs wrapped in a blanket!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I have a serious tummy ache

So, I feel bad, really, really, really bad. My stomach is upset and just about everything makes me want to be sick. It is a terrible feeling, made worse by the coughing fits I keep having :(

We started the lights outside, they became a nightmare. Ryan went to he store, got the tree and new lights. So tonight he will be getting the lights on the tree, and tomorrow morning before I head to work, we will put the new and easier lights up on the house. Then I will return the terrible lights to the store and use that money to buy Chrismukah presents for the littles.

Haven is at riding, dinner is cooked (thank goodness) and Ryan can do homework tonight while I fold laundry upstairs. I have two calls tonight and then I plan to indulge myself by laying in bed and watching television, with a cup of tea, delivered by my sweet husband.

Another fun note, my bestest friend from high school, Chelle, is coming Saturday with her hubby and stepson....and she is bringing her twin sister Diane and her boyfriend! I haven't seen Diane in about six years, crazy since we all live in the DC metro area, and it will be fun to catch up, if the kids stay quiet that is!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Busy weekend plans

So we are in the mad rush towards Christmas. All of the outside decorations are done with the exception of the train,lights and wreath which will go up in the morning. My plan for tomorrow is to get the living situated so we can grab a tree tomorrow evening after the kids get home.

I also have some more cookies to make, since Chelle, her new hubby and stepson are visiting on Saturday. I am so excited, and want the house to be super festive and warm. I plan on having it all lite up, roaring fire and a yummy dinner, either homemade pizza or roasted veggies. Then Sunday we have church and will head up to see my niece dance in The Nutcracker. My parents will be there as well, so it will be fun for the kids.

Now I need to get ready for class tonight.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Chanukah Christmas Gifts

So, we go to this cool church where we celebrate, well, EVERYTHING! I love that my kids get to explore so many aspects of world religions, I think it will help them discover their true beliefs. This year we are leaping on the Fallon's Chanukah bandwagon. See my father's side of the family is Jewish, but we never really celebrated except when we were at my grandparents for Easter/Passover, when we were only in it for the money that was hidden with the Matzo and we still had our Easter baskets and eggs.

This year, my dad is bringing his dad's menorah and they will be here the first night of Chanukah-interestingly the night after we celebrate Christmas with my sister. We will eat a traditional meal (thanks Em) and my dad will read the kids the story of Chanukah and they will get a gift. The funny part is that Em and I started buying some of the gifts today and a few were Christmas themed. So we are blending the holidays....maybe a dreidel will end up in the stockings :)

Somehow we made it!

We made it down to pictures on time, kids were dressed in their holiday best, and we were all set.

Then we went to do the first set and Haven started, yes HAVEN....my OLDEST. Ughh. Then we had a break in the middle and went into the room with the Christmas tree set up. Grayson was trying so hard that he had that "I am smiling so hard it looks like I am going to bite you!" face as only small children have when told to smile. He also kept lifting his chin up, he is so strange. Brittan was doing as told, sitting and smiling. Haven was being a pain in the arse, looking all over, not following directions, etc. Needless to say, the picture I ended up getting is of all of them looking at a story book. Yep, no one looking at the camera, no sweet faces to admire, just tops of heads.

Then we went to dinner with the Fallons and it took a very long time. The kids were all pretty good, especially since it was late and they had to wait awhile. As soon as we got in the car to come home, I told my girls that it was home and homework, then bed. What does my darling oldest say, "Uh then we don't get any TV time!" So I yelled at her that we just ate dinner with her friends, and that she is absurdly lucky and spoiled and blessed and that she should be thankful for the evening she had and on and on and on.......

Why oh why is that child so trying?

Blowin' wind

So, Gray and I ran our errands and found some cute little goodies for the girls, as well as black pants for pictures tonight and a few other odds and ends. Em and Maggie met up with us, which was great except the littles decided that Kohls was the place to run amok! Oh well, we reigned them in, got the heck out of there and went to the park where they ate lunch and played for a bit. It got cold, we came home and I decided that now was a super time to set up the outside decorations-what was I thinking? Last year we put a blow up santa in a plane, a blow up big frosty, a moving reindeer, some oversized bulbs and a train. I added a blow up polar bear this year, so I wanted to see how it would work out. We had everything in the big flower bed by the garage, but it seems we have outgrown that area :)

So far, I have the big bulbs lining the walkway by the garage and have the three big blow ups lined up, plane, bear, snowman. I think the train will have to go in front of the living room windows, so now I need more big bulbs or another type of light, maybe some snowflakes?

I am off to tame Gray's hair,pack up the christmas outfits and go wait in line for the girls.

So it is all laid out and I checked that everything works. The frosty has been staked, the others will be staked tomorrow and the train will be put out tomorrow as well. Now all I need is for Ryan to take down the trellis and put up the big wreath:)

The overwhelming sense of dread

What could bring this on so early in the morning? It's pictures with all three kids at 4:20 this afternoon. That's right, I am picking the girls up, driving to the picture place, changing their clothes and hoping that the place is running close to on time. Then we will need to wait for the pictures or I may just pick them up on Wednesday when I head down to get milk. Of course it will be dinner time when we are done, so if they all cooperate I promised them dinner out (it's kid's day). So the dread is there, I am not looking forward to wrangling a bunch of cranky kids in the afternoon wearing Christmas outfits. I just want one decent shot.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Just not healthy


So I am watching a show and a commercial came on for Bob Evans Deep Dish Dinners. How unhealthy can one meal get???? A biscuit covered in mashed potatoes topped with gravy, fried chicken and cheese! The best part is...this heart attack is only $5.99, what a steal. You would need to eat salads for a week straight.

Dusting off my skills

See my new header, I made it. See long before I was a professor, back in the good ole days, I was in advertising. Although never a designer, I was an art director along with media planner/buyer and an account manager-I changed jobs a lot. See, being an art director is a great gig if you have an eye for design, but not the best skills. Basically I had the vision and explained it to the designer who then created the ad, I loved that gig. So today I dusted off my very flawed design skills and made the banner. It didn't come out as I saw it in my minds eye, curse of art direction, but I am pretty pleased since I haven't really designed in about 10 years!

It's beginning to feel like Christmas!

So almost all of the inside decorations are done and I am getting ready to bake off the first batch of shortbread in my 12 days of Christmas pan. Work is slowing down, this Friday will be my last one at PT school, and I have two Wednesdays left and the exams to grade. I feel more relaxed, and know that the only big things left are to put up the outside decorations, send cards, do the tree and wrap!

My parents and my sister's family will be here on the 20th to celebrate Christmas a little early. Then Ryan's mom arrives on the 23rd, and I will put her to work on the 24th baking a birthday cake for Ryan. Ryan's brother's and Kristen should arrive late on Christmas Day, so it will be a full week of festivities!

I love this time of year and really look forward to the weeks I have off from everything to relax and enjoy my family. It is a bonus that Ryan will be off from Christmas Eve through January 2nd, it will be great to have family time.

Off to get that first batch of cookies in the oven, as it only makes 12, I need to do at least 4 batches.

A new day

So, we got up a little late, but Brittan made it off to school without any stress and the other kids and I are still in our Pjs. So far, the dishes are done, the stove cleaned and the house vacuumed. In a few, I will go make some coffee and switch the laundry. My big plan is to sort the clean clothes and get the kid's stuff ready to be folded and put away. I also need to go through the rest of the decorations to figure out what we need and what can be put back up.

Tomorrow Gray and I will get the milk and the kid's have Christmas pictures are 4:30,FUN!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Winding down

So Haven will be home from school tomorrow, this is becoming a bad trend on Mondays! She hasn't eaten all day and slept most of it, so she has earned a day off at home resting. Gray's cough is pretty bad, so he will probably be hanging here too.

I am finishing the last of today's cookies. They smell so yummy! The kids each did a holiday craft, I did some work and finished a paper. All I want right now is my warm and cozy bed!

I did, however, score a sweet deal for teacher gifts. I already got Haven's teacher some earrings and Brittan's teacher a ring. For Britt's aid, I ordered a half pound chocolate Christmas Mouse, and got a free set of 36 truffles and deluxe nuts, which will be perfect for Haven's two aids! All that for under 13 bucks shipped!!!

Christmas/Santa/Pagan Cookies

So as I was mixing up the dough for the next batch of Christmas cookies, a thought crossed my mind. I have come across many people who tell their children that there is no Santa and that Christmas is about Christ. Well, let's examine this for a moment.

Reviewing the story of Saint Nicholas you find that his acts of kindness took place in winter and he is believed to have been the origin of our Santa Claus. So far, this seems to line up, right time of year, sharing the wealth and showing love and kindness. On to Christ. Well Christmas is meant to celebrate the birth of Christ, but it is a well known and accepted fact that Christ was born in the Spring. The true reason that Christmas is celebrated in winter was to coincide with the pagan holidays including Winter Solstice and the Jewish holiday of Chanukah (seriously, ask your religious leaders, I know Em did and they were more than happy to agree that this was the reason).

So it seems to me, that telling children that Christmas in December is about the birth of Christ is simply untrue and that the "story" of Santa is actually more likely to be accurate. So, come on, let the kids have Santa! If it makes you feel better, we tell our kids that Christmas is supposed to be about the birth of Christ, but that it really happened in Spring. Maybe some of the ultra Christians could do that too, you know, be honest with the kids, and then tell them the story of Saint Nicholas as well.

The show must go on.....

So, I finally sent Haven up to bed at 5 hoping she would get some sleep. Grayson had already woken up and was sleeping in the couch. Haven went up and I laid down on the couch with Gray, foot to foot trying to share the big warm blanket. I finally dozed off around 5:30 with the split of the couch between my shoulder blades and no blanket from the waist up. Then at 6 am Haven was back, not sure why, but back to wake me and Gray up. So then I sent her back to bed since she was up and sick all night and got up and fed Gray breakfast.

So I am tired and sick and all I want to do is whine and moan, but that doesn't work here. Ryan will stop at the store on his way home and he will clean the bathroom, but then he needs to sleep since he has work tonight. I have switched the laundry, so he can put whatever he needs to in the wash, and have begun cleaning up the house. Dinner tonight will be black beans I started soaking last night, with seasoned ground beef and spanish rice served with lettuce, tomato and sour cream. Cheap, easy and healthy-well except Haven will get toast.

I have the stuff I need out for chocolate florentines. I will begin these in a few minutes and after Britt is up and eats, she can help me finish decorating and sort the laundry. We will just need to adjust how things get done today, no room to move what needs to be done.

A fate worse than torture

So it is 3:30 am and I am blogging, why you ask? Well, I went to bed at 10:30 as I felt crappy from my cold. At 12:30 I woke to Haven screaming, she had just thrown up all over the bathroom, I mean ALL OVER. Get her out of there and settled with a bucket, call husband who assures me he will clean it up when he gets home in the a.m. and I lock the kids out of that room. Go back to sleep and at 3 am wake to Haven throwing up,now in the bucket. Now downstairs, she is in the bathroom, I am on the couch and I realized my "cold" is now happily settled in my chest and ears, both if which hurt really really badly.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Home again!

It was a long drive but we are all home again, even got the dog picked up!

I have some work to do tonight and then tomorrow will be all about baking and decorating! There are threats of rain, but if I can, I will get most of the outside stuff up, as well as the last few indoor decorations. Then everything will be put back up except the ornaments for the tree we will get Thursday. That day Ryan will also hang the HUGE wreath over the garage.

Tomorrow I hope to get the chocolate chip cookies and some of the florentines baked, it will be quite the adventure :)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Still in NC and under the weather

We had a very nice Thanksgiving, and I hope you all did too!

I seem to have been bitten by a bug, I have a terrible sore throat and am stuffy and just feel crummy. Thankfully my parents are occupying the kids and I am laying in bed working. We will leave early tomorrow to get home and get the dog, then Sunday the kids and I will get cracking on the outside decorations:)

Safe travels!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

We made it safe and sound to NC and I only cried once (trust me, given the circumstances that is impressive!)

This year we have so much to be thankful for, steady jobs, wonderful children, healthy family and a strong marriage. While we have some tests coming up, namely Ryan's mom moving in, I am looking to it as a blessing. I have so much more to share, but the littles are hungry!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Trying to get out the door

So, the bags are packed, lunches are made and are in the cooler and the kid's have their blankets and stuffed animals on the front bench. I have a call starting in 10 minutes that will run until 11 when my next call begins. If all goes well, hubby will be home before the 11 am call and we can load the car and leave to drop the dog. If he isn't home by then, we will have to wait until noon and leave before THAT call! So far,all that is left is for me to get my clothes on, the cats food to be checked, the trash to go out and the dishwasher to be started. Not too shabby!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The day got brighter

So, we have been trying to get a vacation with our timeshare in Vermont. The plan was for March when I am off for Spring Break, but there was always an issue. Then we looked at summer, but we have something going on this summer and I wasn't sure how we would fit it in. Today we were confirmed for the week I wanted in March! Woohoo,I am so excited that we have the place booked and the family and I can go and enjoy one of my favorite places on earth.

Not as planned

So to say this morning did not go as planned is not doing it justice. We had a bad start, then the girls got off to school and I tried to get some stuff done around the house. Then Gray and I left to go to pictures, and all I wanted was a drink because my stomach was really upset. Well, of course the drive through was wrapped around the building. Finally we get down to the picture place and we are about 15 minutes early. I check in and ask, ASK, that they are running on time. They assure me they are, and Gray and I wait, and wait, and wait until it is 20 minutes past our appointment time, Gray looks a mess and he is almost in tears (well, we both were almost in tears). So I ask the girl at the counter who tells me that there is someone else before us-that means at least 20 minutes more, and was really nasty about it, so we left. Then I called and the manager was busy and was supposed to call back, but hasn't. Now I am really pissed since I need these pictures done and they wasted my time today. Here's the thing, if I wanted an appointment at 11, I would make one then, not bring my kid, have them waste my time, it become lunchtime and then have any expectation of a decent picture. Argggg. Now I am off to call them again to see if SOMEONE can actually be helpful.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sad news

Recently my mother told me my uncle's youngest brother was sick with cancer. Today she told me he passed away. Uncle Bob was a really great guy, and while not my uncle, I remember him from many different family events. He was a lawyer, and right after law school he surprised his whole family by running off and joining the Peace Corp. After coming back and marrying, he began a very successful career. He wasn't very old, not even 60, and his two boys are only in their 20's. These young men are amazing, so incredibly bright and successful even at their young ages, and I know their father's death will devastate them. Tonight I think of that entire side of my family who all loved Uncle Bob, I hope they all find strength in their togetherness and that their love is carried to Bob where ever his spirit flies.

Pretty pretty

So I managed to get all my errands done, and the pedicure was so nice and indulgent!

After Gray ate lunch, he informed me that he needed to go see Dr. Tom, and since he has been coughing a bit,I ran him over there. Then we stopped to get the tomatoes I forgot this morning and then home. Did some housework and posts, all I have left is dinner and my paper, which is only two pages - I may even get some down time tonight. I am super sleepy, and really need to get the decorating going so I can be super Christmas mom, so the more I get done today, the more fun we can have decorating tomorrow after pictures.

Morning plans

So Emily is away, I am ahead of the game with the getting ready to go game, so what, pray tell, will I be doing this morning.....

Well, after dropping the kids off, I will first go to Giant and get more butter (Christmas baking-we are not butter addicts), then to CVS for batteries, then to get a pedicure (woohoooooo),then to Jiffy Lube for an oil change and then to Tom's to get my bones cracked :)

After all of this, I will get Gray from preschool, bring home home and feed him lunch. Then I will try to start the Christmas decorations. I think dinner will be soup and sandwiches since we don't want to leave with a fridge full of leftovers!

OK, off to get clothes on, run the monsters to school and start the errands!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Butter me up!

OK,so this may seem really silly to some people, but if you bake a lot, you will understand my sheer joy.

So the good brand name butter is on sale super cheap this week for only 1.99. That alone could make my heart race, but get this......I have 15 coupons for $1 off and 15 coupons for .55 off! I will be going tonight to get 6, then 6 more tomorrow and the last three on Tuesday. Butter freezes really well and I need it for baking and it is .99 cents a pound!

Just plain pooped!

I am exhausted! I know I have been busy, but this is out of hand, I could pass out right now! Thankfully all I need to do is maintain order in the house, make homemade mac and cheese for dinner and do some posts to my classes. I am hoping to snuggle up in bed early tonight and get some good sleep!

The kids all have school in the morning and I need to get the oil changed in the car and make my way down to Fredericksburg to get fabric. I am making my kiddos (and myself and Emily) flannel bed warmers since it has been so chilly. Just simple rice bags with lavender that can be warmed up and put into bed to keep everyone toasty. It is a surprise for the kids, so I need to go when they are at school tomorrow. Tomorrow afternoon I will start packing, and I will have a paper to write :(

Tuesday Gray and I will head back to Fredericksburg so we can get his pictures done. Then we will go to the farm and get the milk, then home for lunch and last minute getting ready details. Since I have calls all morning Wednesday, I need everything to be ready to go. When Ryan gets home and I finish my second call at noon, we will load up the car, drop the dog off and get on our way to NC.

Being we are going to be so busy, I really need to get to bed early!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

You know what....

I got ALL my stuff done early! All that is left are the dishes, and there are only a few and they can hang until morning. I also washed the kid's coats, mittens and booster seat covers and got them back on so there is no rush in the morning. After dinner while Ryan gave baths, I ran out to grab my early edition of the paper and a peppermint mocha twist from Starbucks. I am feeling the holidays coming on.....

A busy bunch

We got a lot done today and I am happy with the progress so far. The Christmas decorations are waiting for us in the living room, and when we get home from NC they will be spreading joy through our house. We cleaned the car out and it is sparkling! We picked Ryan's car up from the shop. Some laundry was folded, and some put away. The kids coats and car seat covers are in the washer, and clothes for church are laid out for tomorrow. I finished my grading and posted one paper, only one short one left to write tonight. I need to go get the veggies ready to roast, we are having roasted veggies with basil, lemon and orzo for dinner. The fire is going, the dishes are done, and I am feeling pretty relaxed and ready for the evening. Maybe I will make the kids some hot cocoa and we will start looking over the decorations.

Friday, November 21, 2008

I have to say it....

I am so sick and tired of pissed off students emailing me because THEY didn't do the work right and then trying to THREATEN me with going to my boss. You know what I always say...go, email everyone you want, email the head of the school, you know what they will say...WE BACK UP THE FACULTY! Here is the thing, if you don't cite sources, it is plagiarism, and if I ask for sources, I AM DOING MY JOB! Oh, and don't tell me that it is because I don't "like" you because here is the thing, I don't really think about you...at all, on a personal level as I am there to teach you and evaluate you, I really don't care to be your friend or get to "know" you. We are not peers. Higher education is one of the few institutions where one person essentially judges the other, so why oh why do they think that emailing me an being a jerk is going to help them???

Secrets and Simple

I want everyone to know, that we have been yell free all day, and I am very happy! The whole atmosphere in the house is better, and while only Ryan and I are here right now, I know that our good moods will carry over to the kids when they get home. Grayson was super cute today when we got in the car to go to school, he asked if tonight was family meeting night, and I assured him it was. Tonight we will all sit down as a family to address the yelling problems, and then we will celebrate our new no yelling policies with a family movie night!

In addition to changing all of our communication processes, I have also been working with the girls on their song for church on Sunday. Grayson is supposed to sing as well, but my guess is he will stay planted on my lap and not go up to sing. The kids are all singing "Tis a Gift to be Simple" which is one of my favorite hymns and so fitting for this time of year. Haven sings loud and confident, Brittan quiet and reserved, but they both love the song and are excited to get dressed up to sing in front of the congregation with their friends.

One last thing......I have a little secret that I can't share until Christmas.....you can all wait, right? :)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Stop Yelling!!!!!

So, it is really sad when you see a major problem in your family that you caused. See, we have always kind of been yellers, but lately it has gotten really, really bad. Now it seems all we do all day long is yell, me at the kids, the kids at each other, me at ryan, ryan at me, ryan at the kids, the kids at us, etc. So tomorrow I am quiting, I am going to try not to yell unless it is an emergency (think HOT! or TORNADO!) I am going to try to convince the hubby not to yell, and maybe by setting a GOOD example, the kids will stop yelling too. I want a house where we are kind to each other, and we need some changes. This is our pre-Christmas resolution, hopefully we will keep it and this good habit will replace the bad.

Weepy days

I have had a bit of a weepy day. The day started out OK except I had a headache and hubby was crabby, ok so was I. Kids got off, I ran to the store, came home and was upset that what I asked to be done wasn't. Headache lasted all day, even now it is still making itself known behind my left eye. It seemed everything made me cry today, sometimes that is just what you need to do when everything is hard, shed a few tears and get the work done. Now I am just trying to get dinner on the table, have hubby get the decorations down and spackle the last wall that needs paint in the kitchen and maybe I will fold some clothes after my call tonight.

At least the weepiness seems to have left, and I know that the next few days will be filled with super fun stuff like power washing and raking leaves!!! At least when we get back from NC, I can get the house dolled up for Christmas :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Getting ready for the holidays

So, we are gearing up for Thanksgiving and then the rapid rush for Christmas!

Tomorrow I will start getting the decorations down and we will get the living room together for the tree. It will be a mad rush to get everything done, but I really want to get the house decorated before Chelle comes on the 6th, so rush, rush, rush.....

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

So, can someone tell me what went wrong???

Every fall it is an adjustment getting back into work at PT school, getting the kids onto a school schedule, etc, but usually by October, we are doing just fine. This year, no dice! I am just as messed up today as I was in August, and the only consilation I have is that it will only last a few more weeks. So, what went wrong???

OK, well, I know that we started off bad with Haven being diagnosed with the seizures and the testing that we needed to have done. Then the Weds/Fri schedule for my classes really stinks as I never have two days at home with help so I never get a chance to relax. Add to this, Grayson started preschool. Plus my classes I am taking have been really, really, awful.

All I can hope is that the few weeks I have off help recharge my batteries and that next term goes a bit smoothers. Maybe having mu MIL here will help, maybe she will clean up, or get the kids out of my hair or something to take the pressure off. I am back on the Mon/Weds class schedule, so I will have my Thursdays and Fridays at home with hubby :)

Ah well, a few more weeks and the craziness will be done...just imagine, I am going to have three weeks of no school and no teaching, whatever will I do? Oh yea, I have a week's worth of company.

Papers and Spelling Words

OK, so my plan to write the one paper by dinner was achieved, but it took ALL DAY! Needless to say, I am in for a long night with the second paper. I did get some of my work work done, and dinner is cooking, although the pork roast isn't done yet and it is now after 5. I guess while we wait, I can map out my second paper...where did my calm, fun day at home go?

Chilly weather

It is very, very chilly out today. Thankfully we have a fire to keep us toasty, and the sun is shining.

I am trying to write one of two papers due today, but am being distracted by Grayson and his many demands. My goal is to have one paper done and posted by dinner, as well as my regular work, so I can finish writing tonight. Tomorrow I will drop kids at school, high tail it to the farm, then do my call and get ready for class. Just another busy, busy day!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Small breaks

So, with everything having been so hectic lately, today was a welcome change. Even though I had Haven home and she had a doctor's appointment, and I currently have two extra kids here, it has been a good day!

Haven and I dropped Britt and Gray at school, then she and I met Emily for a quick coffee/tea and a bagel. She and I came home, I sent a few emails and straightened up then off to the doctor where we were told NO STREP :) just a virus. Went and grabbed Grayson, Maggie and their friend from school and high tailed it to D. Tom's where he made my back feel so much better :) Off for lunch with Emily, then the kids and I came home.

We made a nice fire and I did the dishes, vacuumed up, switched laundry, cleaned cat litter (yuck) and have some pumpkin muffins baking. Now I will make a pot of tea and do a little work before it is time to start dinner. My plans for tomorrow are to stay home and stay warm, it is supposed to be frigid.

Another sickie

So, Haven is home from school today and scheduled to see the doc at 10:40. She is complaining of a sore throat and it looks pretty icky in there, so we are going to see if it is strep. Grayson also is a tad under the weather. He is coughing some and seems like his nose is getting clogged, these are big problems for my boy as this is when all the trouble starts. He is at school since he has no fever, but tonight he will do a breathing treatment and we will use saline to keep his sinuses clear, I am NOT going to the hospital this year.

Otherwise, a few errands to run, plus have the littles here for lunch time. Then I must find a way to see dr tom today, Grayson will need an adjustment and Haven and I could use one too. Off to plan, at least it is a slower day.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Dinner...a nightly production

Ask any mom out there and she will tell you that dinnertime, or better yet, the time she is preparing dinner, is the worst time of day for children. So while trying to cook, there are often hysterics, injuries, general clingyness and whining...every single night. Now, having been a mom for almost 8 1/2 years, I know this, and I try to start dinner on the early side as it gives me more time to cook, and a slightly better chance only one kid will fall apart.

Tonight I got going early since I knew that the dinner I was making required my attention. We are having sausage roll or sausage en croute. Essentially it is sausage, I use mild italian, cooked with peppers and onions then chopped up in the food processor with cheese and seasoning. You add in diced fresh tomato and roll it in puff pastry. Now seriously, has anything ever not tasted fantastic when rolled in puff pastry?

It is a really tasty meal and the whole family will eat it, but I don't make it often since I need to dirty the food processor and I try not to feed the family puff pastry too often or they will come to expect it.

I am happy to say that dinner was made without meltdowns, thanks to the play doh table IN the kitchen so that the kids could keep their eyes on me. I am also baking a pie for dinner, sorry store bought tonight, I just didn't have the time and there were pie requests. So, after I do the dishes (bleck) I can make a big salad to go with the sausage roll and feed the tribe.

I may in fact cry

OK, so we made it to church and I was helping out with both Britt and Gray's classes as they were combined today. Grayson was AWFUL, which is to be expected since he has been awful for the last two months. After church we stayed and had some snack, then I took the kids to lunch, which was super nice I thought. So, while at lunch Grayson was AWFUL. OK, then to the store where, you guessed it, he was AWFUL and AWFUL on the ride home and since we have gotten here!

I am not sure what his issue is, but he is just being bad, not listening, doing things he knows he shouldn't, talking back, etc. I am sure he is testing me, and boy did that blow up for him today. See he is my baby, so he has never seen me really, really fed up and mad, well he did today and he was really yelled at and sent to bed. I mean, I really yelled at him, told him his bad behavior needed to stop now and that he could no longer be like this. He has had me on the breaking point for weeks, and I really need for the behavior to improve or I may lose my mind.

Now I am exhausted, I still need to get some work done, do the dishes, straighten the house and cook dinner, not to mention write that paper. Can I please just take a nap?

and we're off....

So we are up and dressed, kids are fed and I vacuumed a bit. I am throwing back the coffee and the kids are bringing down their laundry. In about an hour, we leave to go to church and if all goes well, I will FINALLY be there to assist in Grayson's class. After church, we will make a quick stop at the store to grab a few things we need (dog food, puff pastry, etc) and a few things that are just rockin deals (stuffing, pudding, etc)

We will then head home, get the kids lunch, straighten the house and do the laundry, same old same old.

I do have to finish some grading today and write a paper, but that can wait until tonight!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A good day

So, I was up from 2 am until after 6 am, but then hubby let me sleep until 9 (actually he tried to get me to sleep longer).

After getting up and cleaning up after the family, Haven and I ran to Rite Aid where we scored a killer deal on a toaster, which is great since I have been shopping for one forever! Then we ran over to Shoppers and met up with Em and her girls. We grabbed a few essentials and a few non-essentials like the pomegranate the hubby requested. Then home to feed the kids, get some chores done, organize my coupons, and have a lovely long chat with Chelle, too bad my kids kept interrupting! I am super excited that we will see her, her hubby and her step son in December when she comes to town for business, I simply cannot wait!

Then I fed the kids dinner, jerk chicken, corn on the cob and roasted butternut squash. I just did some grading, got the kids clothes for church together and cleaned up from dinner. Now if the kids would head to bed, I can get a bit more grading done and head to bed myself!

Hey it's 5 am!!!

and I have been up since 2!

See, I was passed out sleeping by 11 and then I guess hubby fell asleep downstairs and at 2 came up. I woke up when he came up and well, when that happens I usually end up creating some sort of anxiety and keeping myself awake. So now I have done a bunch of work, sent some emails, and planned the day-which includes an option to nap!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Torn

OK, I have a few drinks in me and so I decided to open my soul a bit for everyone.

Here are things I am torn up about:

1. Is having MIL here good or bad? Seems it depends on the day for me. It is good that she will be able to help with the kids and that if for some reason I went back to a more full time job, it would be another grownup in the house.

2. Do I REALLY want another baby or not? That seems to depend on the day, one day I desperately want another one, the next day I am relieved that I am not expecting. I guess that just means I can make due whatever happens.

3. Do I want to move or not? Well, I really want land, loads of it, and the ability to raise and grow our own....BUT we have good friends here and have made a life for the kids and ourselves. Right now, Ryan and I are hoping we can buy a beat up little house on loads of land within five hours from here. Since I don't work on site anywhere in the summer, the kids and I would summer there, grow and raise food etc., and Ryan could come every other weekend. If we had that land, we could have all the things we can't get at this house, like apple groves and a pool, so it would be the best of both worlds. Plus we can totally fix anything in a house at this point, so we could fix the place up, add on when we could, etc.

4. Do I want a FT "real" job or not? Well, I want the MONEY from a FT regular gig, but I would HATE losing my flexible schedule. Maybe if I get this darn doctorate done I can get a FT teaching gig on campus, then I am free during breaks and my schedule is a lot more lax than a "real" job.

OK, that is all I have to share, I am not good at sharing, ask Emily, curse of being the youngest ;)

Saving Face

I have been tough to live with the last month, quick to yell and crabby. I know it and I have apologized to my family, although my grumpiness is justified and some of it is the result of misbehaving children and a husband who was not responding well to stress. See, I am busy and a bit overwhelmed, the teaching on Weds night and Friday afternoon messes with my days off and my to get things done with help from Ryan. Add to that major household breakages (water heater) car issues (tires) general stress over money and the economy and the fact that in less than two months my mother in law moves in......well, you can see why I am grumpy.

I know that it will all be OK, and that we will find a way to live together, but I hate change and the time leading up to the big event is the most stressful for me. Ahhh, I think I need to go make a pitcher of margaritas, that will help :)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I have a bunch of smarty pants

So we finally got Brittan's report card, Ryan went up to the school for her conference today and thy had so many nice things to say. She had a great report card, as did Haven, both reading well above level. I am very proud of my girls, they are hard workers and excellent students. I cannot wait to see how Gray does when he enters school as he is doing quite well at the preschool level.

Progress

It is now 12:12 and we finally got the kitchen border done. I also emptied our closet and Ryan and I sorted through everything. I got all, YES ALL, of my clothes folded and put away, and Ryan swears after lunch he will go fold and put his away. It may not seem like much, but since the kittens were born, we have had the closet in shambles, and now everything is neat and clean. Best of all, I now can grab any winter clothes I may need and all my super snuggly pajamas are folded and tucked away waiting for me.

The big clean did have a nasty side effect, and that would be even more dirty laundry to wash. So far I am pushing it through, and any clean kids clothes are waiting for the girls to fold tomorrow afternoon.

Still on the plan, I need to do dishes, switch laundry, vacuum and make meatballs for supper. Husband even offered to go to school to meet with Brittan's teacher since we missed conferences. Such a huge relief since I have an 8:30 call and I am super tired. So far, hubby is being pretty helpful and I really appreciate it.

Can we do it, gosh I HOPEso!

OK, it is just after 8:30 and once a few cups of coffee have been loaded into me, I am heading up to attack that closet. I hope it gets done today because it has been on the list forever and is holding up other major projects. Then if that gets done, I will attack the growing pile of laundry (I hear they caught on to the dishes and are planning a revolt) and finishing the last spot of painting in the kitchen.

Time to chug that coffee....

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I need to complain

I am tired, really tired and a bit annoyed. My days are long, longer when Gray wants to stay up all night. It is 11:30 and I just finished my work and I really need to clean up the house, but it will have to wait. I will get up tomorrow, get the girls out the door, clean up, and then attack the closets, because I have to. No quiet down day, no rest for the weary, I will work on my only day when I have a husband home and only 1 kid. What will hubby do? He will do three things after I annoy him into it, then he will lay around and complain. Nice sounding day tomorrow huh. Ok, I am angry and tired.

Tired, gloomy and illness..must be winter in VA

So Gray is under the weather again, and he was very restless and up most of the night. It is now 3 pm and he has been sleeping since 11 am, I guess he was tired and needed the sleep. He missed school since he had a fever, so he and I ran to the farm and as a nice mommy, I got him a donut, he didn't finish it which is a sure sign he isn't feeling well since my boy LOVES donuts.

I have been busy working today and will head to class this evening, but it is gloomy outside and all I want to do is nap. My girlies will be home soon and I need to get dinner cooking (homemade waffles, bacon and fruit) Good thing I made some coffee, I need the pick me up!

Off to guzzle coffee and try to get some more work done. Plus the dishes are looking at me and giving me the evil eye, I guess they want to get washed.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Update on the day

So, we have had a reasonably decent day. I am still waiting on information to finish that paper, if all else fails, I will just do it myself.

The kids have played outside a lot, but now Grayson isn't feeling well and is running a fever. I have him settled on the couch, hopefully rest and Tylenol is all he will need. I have gotten my work work done for the day, with the exception of grading which I will start in a bit. The house is pretty much in order with the exception of laundry, but that will be assigned to the hubby on Thursday or Friday. I have a plan for dinner and a lemon cake that is heading into the oven for dessert. I would be on track for a quiet, restful evening if only my team would send me their work. Argh.

No school fun

OK, so I am trying to head into today with a good attitude. So far, I have almost all of the information from my team for the paper, although the person who sent me information last night did not include anything I asked for, sigh.....

The kids had a good breakfast and are bundled up playing outside. We have a nice fire going and I am about to get my first cup of coffee, hooray!

I do have a few musts. I must roast more coffee. I must shower. I must vacuum the house. I must make the girls fold clothes. I must do dishes. I must complete this paper. I must work.

I also have a few things I want to do, and these include making a few loaves of bread and figuring out what the heck I can do different with my leftover chicken for dinner. Off to drink coffee and perk up!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Following the Leader

OK, so we all know, doctoral work, etc etc etc.

Right now my class is heavily dependent on team projects and this week I am lucky enough to be team leader. I have never in my life had so many problems! No one can get work in on time, or stick to a page requirement. No one is emailing back, or editing and I am at my wits end. Did I mention that there is another paper due tomorrow and I only have half the information? Do they think I have all day to edit their work? I don't want a bad grade in this class, and I HATE relying on other people for my grade, as they are not as concerned as I am it seems.

OK, off to edit more.

Terrible, awful, very bad morning

Let's start with that I am overwhelmed, exhausted and just at my wits end. I do not believe that this excuses what I am about to share, but I just needed to explain the background.

I have been busy, REALLY busy, work has had me putting in 60-70 hours a week, add to that classes for me and taking care of a house and three kids. I have been begging, pleading for help, for my family to do something to make the house neat and clean again like I keep it.

I reached my breaking point this morning when I went to wake my girls and found both their room and Grayson's room trashed, and I mean destroyed beyond recognition. To make matters worse, they had shoved, yes SHOVED, paper behind and around their beds, which makes it a fire hazard. Had their father been in there last night, YES, did he make them clean it up, NO!

Then, in trying to locate Gray's sneakers, I see the playroom was equally trashed and destroyed. I have two other little ones coming home with me this afternoon, and now I had no where to let them play!

So, I put everyone in the car for school, the girls were crying because they had been put on restriction, so I took Gray to school first knowing the girls would be late. Then I decided, they are off tomorrow and they can stay home today and do the clean up. I know, I know, whip me, but sometimes school can wait. I know, I know, it is just a mess and they could do it later, but I don't have time later, to be honest, I don't have time NOW, so school can wait. Yeah yeah, school is important and it is their education blah blah blah, ah well I am getting my doctorate so I am well aware that school is important, and I am pretty sure I can catch my 3rd and 1st grader up on anything they missed today. Was it the best decision, maybe not, but when they and my husband can catch on that I work TWO jobs and go to school full time, maybe we won't come to this.

So, they are cleaning, I just did some of the massive amounts of work I need to do, I need to go get the three littles, feed them and figure out a new plan. I did talk to Emily about using the red, yellow and green light like they use at school. Except here it everyone starts at red, and then if homework, chores and general behavior is good you can move up to green. Screw self esteem.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My four year old sent me to bed!

He woke up from a dream and was itchy (daddy forgot his allergy meds!) so I dosed him and told him to go to bed. He then insisted that he couldn't sleep alone and that I could take my computer upstairs so he could sleep in my room! Needless to say, I was too tired to fight, and he is now snoozing away next to me. The things we do to get a break!

Emily

stop stealth posting to me!!!

You are playing games with my mind!

Sunday quietness

We didn't make it to church again today as I was feeling really terrible last night and this morning. We have had a quiet day, the kids had a nice lunch and I am trying to get some things done around the house. Even with the slow day, I haven't gotten nearly enough chores done, but there is always tomorrow!

We are having a yummy dinner, roast chicken, stuffing, roasted butternut squash and sweet potatoes, biscuits and applesauce...yummy!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Trying to find hope

It is our tough time of the year, December/January and August are when we struggle the most financially. I always try to prepare and while on paper we look okay, I never know what is just around the corner. Financial stability is tough in today's times, even for those of us who are considered fortunate.

In addition to my money stress, my mother in law will be moving in with us in December or January. She needs our help, and I am happy to give it, but worry about what it will mean for our family dynamics, plus I am concerned I will have to stop changing my clothes in the family room and walking around half naked ;) We are happy she is coming, and the kids are very excited, but change is tough for me.

I am also thinking of applying for another full time teaching position. I love my FT gig, and it allows me to be home a lot, but I don't make a lot of money and feel I could do more for the family. I guess it will be left in the hands of fate.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

So very crazy!

So, yesterday was busy, busy, busy. I finally made it home, after having fun running around with Em and Maggie, at 3:30. The girls came home and I was working on getting ready for work when it happened.....my laptop died. Apparently the internal charger thing doesn't work, so I have no power. The problem was that I NEEDED a laptop for class last night and our other one doesn't have Powerpoint. Thankfully Emily was super nice and let me take her laptop to class. My company overnighted a new case and it will be here tomorrow, so I will be up and running.

I got home late last night and then was up to 4 am trying to get work done on our desktop that doesn't have the programs I need. I slept on the couch in the family room until 7:20 when Haven was up for school, and I have been busy working, cleaning and getting things done. Tomorrow I have class, then the Fallons are coming for a game night :) Then Saturday I am sleeping in!!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Butterflies

So, I have to be the first to admit that this, like the past few presidential elections, was not one where I was 100% behind a candidate. Being that we are precariously placed, our economy is poor and people are suffering, neither candidate appeared to be a knight in shining armor. Regardless, I went out and cast my vote, and when I stood in front of that ballot, I had butterflies in my stomach. While it appears that the person I voted for will win, I am still concerned for our nation. I worry about what a Democratic majority means for us, and I want to see a change in our country, for the better.

I am sitting here, giddy with excitement to see the results of the American people's choices. I am so proud of this nation, and that people were so moved to get out and cast a vote. What a wonderful indication of the desires of the people, that all want to see a new administration and to see a change in our world, regardless of whose name was on their ballot. The joy I have to be part of a presidential election with the first black candidate, it overwhelms me and makes my heart full.

My darling children sat in chairs waiting patiently for me to vote today. We have talked extensively about what a blessing this right is to have, and I have told them all that they will have that same right given to them on their 18th birthday. I could see on my girl's faces today that they got the seriousness of voting, as they sat there and waited, calming their brother and telling him how important it was that we were there. I am so filled with hope that we will see the change that has been promised. I know what a great nation this is, I see it everyday in the people, now I want to see it in our leadership.

It all comes together

It has been a good day, everything seemed to just fall into place. This morning I was able to get my call done, get the kids out the door and we went to vote. Thankfully we were quick at the polls and we went and had a yummy lunch. Then I grabbed my free cup of joe and we headed home. After getting home, I was super productive and got all of my grading done for PT school, half of it for FT school, made cheese, cleaned up and did the dishes and laundry. Dinner is now cooking and one of the two papers is completed. Tonight I need to run 5 calls with new faculty and work on the other paper I have due. If I am SUPER together, I will be able to get the kid's lunches made since we need to be out the door a 8 am. Whew!

Vote vote vote vote!!!

So, I just finished sending the email to my students urging them to go out and vote, and I urge all of you to do the same. I know the lines are long, but this opportunity only comes around every four years, so go, wait, and vote!

I will e heading out with three kids, fully prepared to stand in line, after I have my call at 8:30. If we need to stand there all day, we will, and I will tell them over and over again how lucky we are to have this right (something I will stress to my girls) and that I refuse to not go out and lend my voice to the masses.

It will be an interesting evening!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Holding it all together

So, it has been a rough few days, but somehow I am holding it together. I am wading through my work, and keeping up with the basic housekeeping. The kids are getting fed, and somehow I am getting it done. To say my life is a delicate balance is a serious understatement. Thankfully, I do pretty well under pressure, and while I know it won't let up until the end of the week, somehow it will get done.

Tomorrow is Election Day so the kiddos are off from school. Currently I have 5 calls scheduled (that is at least 2 1/2 hours) plus I need to vote and make it to CVS at some point. If I can keep moving, I will only have 15 papers left to grade tomorrow for PT school, plus a paper to write and I will start grading for FT school. In addition, I need to carve out a half hour tomorrow to make cheese, and I need to pack up the pumpkin I processed yesterday. It is a lot, but manageable, minus any major issues.

I know how crazy my world is, but I am thankful every day that my kids don't know how much I work around their schedule. To them, I am here being a mom most of the time, and while I will tell them when I am on a call or working that I need some quiet, I am still here is they need me. I am ready to be done with school, and with two years to go, it is great to see an end in site.

It is still crazy

So, dropped the girls off at school, was almost to Grayson's school when they called to tell me Brittan was throwing up....again. So dropped the boy, came and got the girl, ran home and did course checks, got the CSA and got Gray. Since getting home, I have fed them, Britt got peppermint tea and toast, I am hoping it helps settle her tummy, and I did the dishes. Now I MUST get working on grading for PT school, I need to get through 20 papers today. I also must write a paper tonight after I go to Parent/Teacher conferences. Oh did I mention I have calls with new faculty? Please let tomorrow be slow and quiet so I can get stuff done!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

A bunch of Halloweenies




OK, so since no one is vomiting right now, I will post some pics from Halloween.

I never did get a decent shot of Gray by himself, and how grown up does Haven look, I need to lock her up right NOW!

Moving moving moving

OK, so I am moving right along. Got all my work work done for FT school, did one run to the store, did dishes and processed two out of the three pumpkins. I still need to work on laundry and grade papers for PT school, and figure out dinner. I may just feed the family leftovers since no one really ate last night, or I may take some of that pumpkin and make it into pumpkin soup.

While standing there chopping pumpkin today, a memory came upon me which had nothing to do with the pumpkin, but reminded me of why I am who I am. I remember being back on LI and it was either Valentine's Day or Saint Patrick's Day and my beau at the time and I were going out with a friend of his from college. This friend was the SNL version of a guy from Long Island, greasy and stinking of cologne, and I remember that it amused me since so few of the guys I knew were the stereotypical LI guy-and I lived there my whole life! So after having a crap time and heading home, I kept thinking how that was not where I belonged, I shouldn't be in some crappy bar with those people. I am not sure why this memory came upon me, I do know that I was thinking of two different exes while chopping pumpkin, knowing one would have admired the task and one would have made me feel like crap for being cheap, maybe that is where it came from.

I am glad to know that my husband was the one who went out and got me the pumpkins for super cheap, knowing that it would make me happy and that he and the kids would benefit from all of the good food that will come from those pumpkins. I am happy this is where I ended up and that I am understood here.

Just remembered

We set the clocks back...woohooo, I may just be able to catch up on some things!

Even more behind

So, if I was overwhelmed and behind a few days ago, I would have to say I am buried now. Between the two (so far) sick kids, Halloween, and other things that have come up, I am really behind on everything. There are two enormous piles of clean laundry that must be folded, and an equally big pile of dirty that must be washed. The house is ransacked, no one is on a good eating schedule so I am constantly feeding someone, I have a ton of work to do and I am exhausted.

So, I will do some work work now, then get up and put the canner and dehydrator away for the winter (hooray), make a batch of cheese, switch laundry, fold the kid's clothes and try to get Haven to put them away for me, I will vacuum and dust the main level of the house and mop all the floors to disinfect. Then, at some point today I need to start grading the 75 all essay exams. At least the kids only have a half day on Monday and Tuesday they are off, that means I have a few little helpers.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Beat down

I am just exhausted, today took it out of me.

All three kids are in bed, and I am hoping the worst of it has passed for Brittan. Still waiting to see if Haven or I get sick, I would assume that by tomorrow night we would be sick if we were getting it.

I am calling today quits and heading to bed, Ryan stayed home to help out, so if anyone else goes down, her will be there.

That would be two kids down

Britt just started getting sick. This is the weirdest stomach flu ever, they always hit at night, but this one hits at dinnertime! I guess we will see if/when Haven gets it!

Pumpkins and weather

So, my husband went out and picked up pumpkins for me, they were all you could carry (by the wagon) for 5 dollars. Smart husband that he is, he only got me two as I am the one who has to clean, cook and freeze the pumpkin puree. We already have enough for four batches of pumpkin muffins, so some of this will be made into puree and some will be peeled and chopped into chunks to be roasted with butternut squash and sweet potatoes as a hearty side dish.

The weather here is going crazy, today was supposed to be a high of 70, now they are saying 78. This week was supposed to be cool and mild, now we are looking at the high sixties and seventies! I hate when the weather jumps around, if it is fall, I want fall, no messing about. Now I must go finish the apple butter I am making, when husband gets home I will have him get me the canner and jars, then the apples will be finished....just in time for pumpkin.

Those days

You know those days when you know it is going to be terrible because you are already sobbing at 9 am? Yep, it is one of those days.

New day, new way

Husband informed me that I do too much for everyone else, actually he tells me this often and I usually just brush it aside. Needless to say, I do too much for my family and they don't appreciate it, and I find it spills out into all other aspects of my life, personal and work. When I then find that I do not get the same respect or compassion shown, I get upset as I believe I should be treated as I treat others. The realization that the whole "do unto others" theory only works if you can accept that you will only get back what the other is willing to give.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Here's the thing

when people are sick, and you actually care, you call to see if they are okay or need anything. That is what I do.

Fry ups, fires and bellyaches

So Grayson seems to be feeling a bit better this morning, he has been drinking some tea, but hasn't eaten yet. His personality is back, and for that I am happy, the crabby crying child from yesterday was not my baby. The girls went off to school happy and content, I am hoping that they stay well through trick or treating tonight. They were so sad about not having the party tonight, so I have a few things up my sleeves to take the sting out.

The forecast says it will warm up today and be beautiful, but right now it is so chilly. Ryan just made me a gorgeous fire, and I fried up some potatoes, onions, leftover farm sausage and an egg for breakfast. Usually I don't eat in the morning, but today I really wanted a good old fashioned fry up. Now I must go grade papers, start a pot of applesauce and apple butter, maybe we will finish off the last of the apples today!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Let's just call the whole thing off

Since Gray is sick, I decided it was best to inform the RE head at church since I am supposed to help in class this week. In addition, our Halloween party, and all of the goodies I had planned, is canceled due to potentially ill kids, and I am guessing we will just skip Saturday's activities as well since we wouldn't want to share the germy wealth. So if you are looking for us, you will have to wade through the Lysol, we will be here until Monday.

Sick kid

So while busily baking cookies for the parties tomorrow, Grayson decided it was a great time to come down with the stomach flu. He has been sick for a few hours and the poor thing looks just terrible! Knowing people who have just had this, I know he will feel better tomorrow and will be able to enjoy Halloween, I just worry that the girls will get sick tomorrow :(

Bad Teacher/Good Mom

So, I decided to let my Friday class have the day off. They were only meeting with me to go over presentations, so they can send that information via email, and I can save myself the Friday traffic nightmare prior to trick or treating.

Tomorrow all three kiddos have parties. I am baking some ghost cookies for the girl's classes, and Grayson's class is getting carrots (I signed up for the healthy snack). Gray will wear his costume and the kids get to go trick or treating around the high school where the preschool is located. The teachers get so into the little one's coming and fill their sacks full, I swear I have never seen one small child with so much candy!

As is tradition, we will have a themed dinner tomorrow and the Fallon kids will come and eat with us, then go trick or treating. I also have saved a movie for them for after they truck through the neighborhood.

Tonight I have some grading, posts and a call to make, but then I will get some down time.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Falling behind

The last few weeks have been overwhelming, and I feel like I just keep falling further behind. I still have three to four batches of apples to dry and the house needs a good going over. There is plenty of clean laundry, but none is folded or put away. I have been working to get the basics done each day, dishes, vacuuming, laundry, gathering up the general mess, cooking, work and errands, but there is so much that is looming and it is making me very overwhelmed. Living in a house that is disorganized is frustrating for me, and while I KNOW what I need to do, I just never seem to have enough time when the basics are done. Right now I am halfway through grading for FT school, and I need to finish today. I am still not feeling well, not that anyone at my home would care to notice, and I still have to cook dinner and go to PT school tonight. Tomorrow doesn't appear to be any better, since I need to bake cookies for the girls parties on Friday and wrangle something up for Grayson's party. I need to layout Halloween costumes since I work Friday afternoon and won't be home until dinnertime, and I must fold the kid's clothes at least. I am waiting for the guy to come put in the water heater and I must get on a call at three, so when am I supposed to get it all done? If I could, I would get another five hours in the day, and maybe I could get on top of this heap. Did I mention that the curtain rod in the family room is falling down and I need to go get a replacement and paint for this room?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The day just gets yuckier

So, the new water heater is ordered and will hopefully be installed in the next few days. Thankfully the old one works, it is just leaking, so we can still be clean. Ryan's dad is in a bad way as well, he lost a big client and isn't going to pay alimony, to his mom who has no job and is facing foreclosure. Sounds like fun huh. So we, the only remotely stable people, have been trying to figure out what to do. We have asked her to come live here, and while that may seem like fun to some people, lets just say my MIL and I are polar opposites. She never has a plan (evidence for my life here), is erratic, a blamer, doesn't own her choices and mistakes and is very, very critical and passive aggressive. Visits with her can be tough and I bite my tongue a lot, but if she lives here it will have to be different. This world we have built is strong, stable and grounded for the kid's. They know who their parents are, our beliefs and our goals. While we always knew she would end up with us someday, I was hoping it would be after we moved and bought a house with an apartment or inlaw suite. I am very stressed about what is to come, and it is taking its toll. I am feeling very sick, I think I have a fever working and I just want to go to bed. As I am a mom, I am supervising homework and making dinner in spite of my yuckiness.

Another note on home ownership

When you own a forty year old house, and it needs a repair, it is just a mess. Needless to say, we have one quote for 1400 and one for 600 but we aren't even sure a new water heater will fit in the space of the old one! Apparently codes have changed, and we need an expansion kit, so who knows what that means.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Joys of Home Ownership

So as the kids were getting out of the bath, I was in the laundry room and noticed that there was water dripping in. Called Ryan down and we saw that the pipe was dripping. While looking at the pipe, we noticed water on the other side of the room, seems the water heater decided to spring a leak too. So tomorrow the plumber comes and I am guess we will be getting a new water heater. Lets just hope that the whole thing doesn't decide to bust a leak tonight and flood the house, that would be unbearable! Again, like the tires, I am taking it as a blessing that we can actually afford the repairs, a few months ago this would have pushed me into a stress overload, but so far I am ok, as long as there is no flood in the morning.

There is a chance of SNOW???

Holy schmoly! I just looked at the forecast and on Wednesday they are calling for rain/snow showers in the morning. Now I know it has been cold, and I have been enjoying it, but we live in Virginia and it barely ever snows at all, and never before December! I would love if we had a white winter, we desperately miss snow, but come on, it is October.

Mondays keep me hopping!

This morning the crew and I made it out the door with no real hiccups. Britt had her field trip and it is very chilly, so I am hoping they went and she stayed warm! Tomorrow Haven and Grayson each have field trips.

After dropping Gray at school, I ran home and did some work, then back out the door at 10:30 to get the CSA which is in the opposite direction of preschool. Got the CSA bag (we will eat well this week!) and headed off to preschool. Grabbed Gray and Maggie, ran to the grocery store to get juiceboxes and bread, no canteens on trips :( The kids were really good at the store and even helped me scan some of the stuff we were getting. The I ran home, fed the littles some lunch, made a fire, finished my work, sliced some apples to dry and vacuumed the lower level. Now I can relax for a bit, enjoy the warm fire and do a little web surfing. Tonight, as requested by my smallest child, we will be having tacos and spanish rice.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

CVS is my friend

All I can say is, my stuff ran up at over 130 dollars, and I paid $6. Yes SIX DOLLARS. Bwhahahhahaha!