January 29, 2010
My most recent move was when I married John. THAT has definitely added a lot to my life. Husband, new family, babies, pets, neighbors.... Some day I'll tell you stories about my neighbors.
Today I am thinking of other people moving. It is possible that I have a harder time with friends moving than me being the one who moves. I think it's because of nostalgia. The memories of important moments in my life spent at that person's house replay in my mind and I think, "I'll never be able to visit this place again."
"This is the yard I played Kick the Can and my friend got clotheslined running in the dark."
"There is where the mistletoe hung where I kissed my first love."
"That is the wiggly doorknob that nearly scared my friend to death after we watched Nightmare on Elm Street."
"The 'fort' at my grandparents' house is where we had countless hours of fun and make-believe."
Now I realize that I take on the worry of moving for others too. My client, Miss Hepburn, is moving soon and I wonder what she will be able to take with her. Will she be able to keep her dog? She loves that dog. Will she have a hard time leaving the house that her son built for her and her husband? She has done such a nice job at decorating it. This time it is not my cherished memories that I'm concerned about.... but hers.
Miss Hepburn won't need my services anymore and even though someone else will... I'll miss her because she has become my friend. May your move be a positive one.
January 28, 2010
small, approximately 12 inches long
Dark brown ears and brows
Cream face and legs, brown body
Gets along with children
Loves to be carried
January 27, 2010
It was Josiah's birthday party. Nearly everything was done. With only two things left to accomplish, I decided coffee was a priority. Then people started arriving .... 15 minutes early. Really? When does that ever happen? Belinda, my sister-in-law, was the first one through the door and she asks, "Is there anything I can help you with?" I told her, "Well... everything for the party is set but I am about to go into the toy room and scoop up everything left on the floor and put it in a laundry basket." (I had already done some picking up, okay? There were pathways by this time.) Belinda says, "I can do that!" (Belinda rocks.) And soon everything that had not yet been picked up in that toy room was stashed away for another time. Success!
Ever since that time I've been clinging to the clean. Confronting the chaos head on. Defending my living room from the invasion of toys, blankets, coats, hats, shoes, dishes, and, yes, even popcorn. The battle is wearisome at times but the fight must go on.
This could happen. again.
You see, my idea of clean and my boys' idea of clean is not the same. No. Not at all. I say, "Pick up your toys." They hear, "Stuff them into the toy room (and for good measure, dump them out in the process)."
Never, never, never, never give up! (I like to borrow quotes from Winston Churchill.)
Oh, yes. Get this. I was channel surfing and saw a glimpse of an organizing show on HGTV. The person was asking for help in organizing their spotless playroom. I had to turn to the channel. Obviously, they have no CONCEPT of a mess.
P.S. I'm sure that some day you will hear about Josiah's actual birthday party but I'm waiting for a quote from him which he may or may not deliver. Right now he said he's thinking about what he might want to say on the blog.
January 26, 2010
The Time: Lunch time
The Occasion: Football playoffs
The Crime: Taco Theft
The Victim: Nathan
The Culprit: Jesse the dog
Soon after Nathan began eating his second taco, there was an outcry against Jesse.
"Jesse stole my taco! He ate it! He's a bad dog. He's a VERY bad dog!"
The kids tend to forget that they are at just the right level for Jesse to snatch their food right from their hands. It happens almost every time. Sometimes Jesse is sneaky about it. Other times he will nonchalantly walk by and just grab it and go. A lot of the time, they abandon their food for just a moment only to return and find it missing. Jesse steals food. It's what he does.
I asked Nathan about the incident so we could get all the facts straight.
He must have thought the story needed some embellishment.
Next time, Nathan, watch out for that dog, octopus, pipe food-snatching team!
January 25, 2010
I just want to thank all
In all seriousness, this award is a blessing because it lets me know that the things I've shared have given someone a laugh or encouraged them in some way. I love to see and share the humor in life.The rules for this award are:
- Put the logo on your blog/post.
- Nominate and link up to 9 blogs which allure, amuse, bewitch, impress or inspire you.
- Let them know that they have been splashed by commenting on their blog.
- Remember to link the person from whom you received your Splash Award.
These blogs have made me smile, laugh, be inspired or impressed me with their heart for people and perseverance in hard times.
Suburb Sanity - I love her sense of humor. She can tell you how to insult people nicely, what to do about sleepless nights, and how to make a nearly-grown child call home.
The Livesay [Haiti] Weblog - Troy and Tara are missionaries in Haiti. Yep. They are there right now. I love reading their stories of hope in the midst of heartache.
Our Kantola Family Story - She made me start blogging. She's an excellent writer: witty, funny, and real. She also has excellent taste in friends.
The Jungle Hut - Rita lives in Paraguay. Oh the stories she has to tell!
JenHartNSoul - Jen offers insight, recipes, and, yes, humor too.
thatgirlblogs - I love the way she tells stories and shares her frequent brushes with fame.
Today's Cliche - It's a His and Hers blog! We get to read the different ways that He and She view life.
Nobody Listens To The Girl - She cracks me up. I love to laugh and Bethany delivers. She is also an expert on Trent Edwards.
Anne Nunn Photography - Her photographs are beautiful. She finds and shows you the beauty in the everyday and those special days too.
Bethany from Nobody Listens To The Girl also recently listed me in her top ten blogs. (Yeah, I was just as shocked as you.) AND she recently reinstated me on her blogroll so whatever I did to fall from her graces must have been resolved or maybe just enough time passed to allow my link to be shown once again. (I'm so sorry, Bethany! I'll never ever do it again unless it was really funny to me... )
I am now going to pass this honor on to my top ten blogs. If you will, please turn your attention to the blogs above including Blue Cotton Memory (She has five boys and a lot of insight to share.) Now I realize that Nobody Listens to the Girl is in this list already and you're not supposed to place the giver in the givee list... Just call me a cheater.
OR look to the right and see my longer list of favorites. Now I'm an overachiever. And a brown noser.
Would you stop calling me names already? I'm just trying to pass along a prize and an honor...
P.S. I do NOT have tuberculosis! Just in case you were concerned... be concerned no longer. Friday I had to have a ppd test (apparently tuberculosis is abbreviated ppd and, yes, I know that ppd stands for something else which is another term for tuberculosis) for work. I was stabbed and injected with a foreign substance in order for them to tell me this morning something I already knew. I'm not sick. Well, THAT'S a relief. Those non-symptoms had me worried.
January 21, 2010
As I'm putting the pizza into the oven, Nathan asks me, "Are you making pizza for dinner?". "Yes, I am. Do you want to eat some pizza?" Then he says, "I'm not hungry anymore; I already ate!" So I ask, "Oh really, what did you eat?" Nathan replies, "Um... a booger...."
That must of been SOME booger. I think it was more likely the cookies he kept sneaking.
After dinner was NOT eaten and before the boys left for Wednesday evening church, Josiah tells me that he just flushed Nathan's underwear on accident. I start laughing. He looks at me and says, "No, I really did. I didn't know they were in there and I flushed them." I tried to pull off a rescue operation with the plunger but, man, they were GONE. This happened while I was commenting on Kate's blog so here's my instant reaction:
"Hey! Guess what? My toilet is awesome! A kid's pair of underwear just got flushed by accident and the toilet didn't even get clogged. So long, Super Hero briefs."
Yep. Nathan wasn't too thrilled. "I want my underwear back!", he whined. Sorry, dude, they aren't coming back.
Later, my friend let me on this: "Sarah...he's a funny one. This evening during class I asked him if he needed to go to the restroom. He said 'No, I told you I already went.' I said okay, just making sure. Then he said that he couldn't go in there...that there were sharks in the toilet. I said oh... well they have to go they can't stay there. What a funny kiddo. I do enjoy having him in class."
Sharks. I had not heard that one before. Where does he come up with these things?
Thankfully, if there are sharks in our toilet.... THEY DON'T STAND A CHANCE.
January 20, 2010
When I first moved there as a child, I hated it. Everything was so completely different. But it wasn't long until it became home.
Gonaives in 1985
To me, Haiti is a nation of contrasts. There is great beauty and overwhelming ugliness. Friendliness and suspicion. Love and hatred. Affluence and poverty. Generosity and theft.
My family was robbed when we lived in Haiti. That's a longer story than I want to spend time sharing today except for this: Everything of value was taken from us and our Haitian help including Leiz, our yard man. But when Leiz saw that my dad's watch had been taken from his wrist, Leiz took off his own watch and tried to give it to my dad. Even in the midst of his own loss, he wanted to give what he had to help comfort us in the overwhelming realization of what had just happened and that we had survived.
I've watched the news and followed blogs of survival lists and orphanage updates. I've looked for news of missionaries that we know. I've wished that I could give a little Haitian girl a home.
Another earthquake was felt in Haiti this morning. This one was a 6.1.
Please don't stop praying for Haiti. In the words of one Haitian woman, "Pa Bliye'm" Don't forget me.
M-ap prie pou ou, Haiti. M sonje toujou.
Read The Livesay [Haiti] Weblog for current stories of endurance, perseverance, and hope.
January 19, 2010
Yesterday at 5:36pm .Comment .Like
Sarah became a fan of Would you stop repeating their name already and just ask them your question!? and Why does the bathroom suddenly become grand central station when it's MY turn in there?.
Yesterday at 2:09pm .Comment .Like
Sarah is now friends with Bethany and 17 other people.
Yesterday at 10:17am .Comment .Like
Sarah joined the group 1 Million Strong for Craving that Hot & Sour Soup and those Crispy Fried Wontons from Hong Kong Takeout Restaurant.
Sun at 11:30am .Comment .Like
Sarah is attending One Week Mission Trip to the Dominican Republic in February.
Jan 12 @ 7:25pm .Comment .Like
January 18, 2010
We use your product and love the construction of it; after all, Pull-Ups is "The only brand with easy open sides." The purpose of these? "There for moms, just in case!" Right. As if accidents are the exception... I like this feature just in case my child rips off his Pull-Up and it is still clean; I can then reattach the sides and save myself from wasting 25 cents. Besides, it looks more comfortable. I mean, if you're going to sleep with your own urine right next to your skin, you may as well be comfortable.
The other features you offer such as Learning Designs and Cool Alert show an effort to improve the potty training experience but they fall flat. The Designs are not visible unless you first take off the child's pants (This part is no problem for the child.) and then said child bends over and tugs the Pull-Up into a position where he can see if the Learning Designs are still there. It's just simpler to feel or smell whether the Pull-Up has been filled. And Cool Alert? Really? Can it be cool inside a Pull-Up next to the skin of the child who has just peed? I kind of doubt it. My child has never commented on feeling the chill but neither have I tested this myself nor will I. I'm putting the Cool Alert in the irrelevant idea section.
My main concern is the characters you put on your Pull-Ups. Yes, they are very cute. However, you have a practice of selling two characters in the same package. Yes, they are related: Princesses and Cinderella, Lightning McQueen and Mater. Here lies the problem. Kids don't need this choice! My son roots through the package searching for Mater because "Queen wakes me up". Mater is his Pull-Up of choice since you, in your creativity, have pushed choosing a pattern upon young children. Perhaps if you would teach Lightning McQueen to let sleeping boys sleep, this problem could be averted. I propose you create an all Mater package; this way the choice can be made in the store instead of ALL OVER THE BATHROOM FLOOR. *ahem*
On another note, I see on your website that you have a potty dance video. That's great! Children love music and dancing. *watches video now* Uh... Never mind. We don't have time to be dancing on the way to the potty!
Anyway... thanks for those Easy Open sides. They ARE your saving grace.
A mom with way too many Lightning McQueen Pull-Ups who is contemplating altering McQueen with a big black permanent marker to look like the funny, buck-toothed Mater.
January 15, 2010
Noah was playing a particularly long time in the bathtub a couple days ago. He kept playing that game that he likes. I call it "You're a Sucker, Mama!". In this game he repeatedly tells me that he wants "out" but when I approach him, towel in hand, to lift him out of the tub, he suddenly does an about face and says "NO!" I think this game brings him much delight; it brings me much annoyance.
This time the game lasted too long.
His evident concern began the second he noticed his hands. He lifted them to me and in a very anxious voice asked, "Mom?". (He's very wordy.) He had a serious condition known as "raisin hands". I could have told him, "Ha! That's what you get for playing your 'Mama's a Sucker' game." but I didn't. I let him know that his hands were okay and relieved his mind of worry. Soon he was laughing at his hands and feet and their metamorphosis.
As I was thinking about Noah's worries later, I considered that a lot of times I've probably found myself in the same situation. Not with raisin hands but in life's struggles. What looks disastrous in the moment, passes. Some of those moments seem to last a stinking long time but I know it will come to pass and I will have learned and grown from the experience. In the mean time, I have the promises of my Papa God that He will always be with me, strengthen me, guide me, and comfort me.
January 14, 2010
Then this thought comes to me: I need to get a Dr Pepper. And I keep thinking about that wonderfully shiny can of deliciously satisfying Dr Pepper until I get up and get one.
Then I thought, "I bet I can find a picture of Dr Pepper online." You see, I didn't want to post the picture of John holding a Dr Pepper because it would bring back too many sad thoughts of betrayal and what not.... aaaand I'm feeling a bit lazy about taking a picture of my current can. (Besides, there's too much clutter around here this morning to get a clear, non embarrassing shot.) So I went to drpepper.com and found THIS:
**Excuse me while I go run the vacuum so that my boys can run around like screaming banshees......... OKAY. I'm back. I hope you didn't mind waiting. **
But while I was there, I discovered that under the entertainment link there is an online game (games are nice) and that you can watch a cute and funny little commercial for Diet Dr Pepper (which I don't drink). Oh. Sure. You can drink it if you want! I just realize that it's winter and our bodies need an extra layer of fat in order to keep warm in these frigid temperatures so a LOT of regular Dr Pepper and brownies help me out in that area.
HOWEVER, the most important discovery I made is in the "About" section. There is a timeline which shows you what Dr Pepper has looked like throughout the decades! You know, in case you were to time travel, you can know exactly what you're looking for without having to question whether it is a counterfeit Dr Pepper or something. I think it is a very thoughtful and informative slide show. I'm going to study it diligently, just in case.
ANYWAY... now that I have my Dr Pepper, what am I going to write about this morning? *sigh*
January 13, 2010
This morning my thoughts and prayers are for the people of Haiti.
I've been there.
I've lived there.
I suppose it is like hearing your hometown was leveled. I'm familiar with it. Friends still live there.
Are any of the victims the children that used to hang on my arms? The ones with smiles and laughter despite their living conditions? Do they have their own children now?
Are the people I bartered and joked with now pleading for help?
And so I pray. Will you pray for the people of Haiti today?
"But Jesus looked at them and said, 'With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.'" Mark 10:27
This picture is of the Haitian flag with tears or blood flowing through it. Both are flowing in Haiti right now.
January 12, 2010
It's supposed to be this colossally awesome point and shoot camera so that I can take colossally awesome pictures now! It didn't come with a manual but, no worries, John downloaded the manual to my desktop for me. And it's only two hundred and some pages long. So.... I haven't read it yet. But that hasn't stopped me from trying it out.
Now that I have a new camera to pursue my interest in photography, I'll have to learn more about it. Yeah, learn more about both my camera and photography. First, I'll check in on Ree and Miz Booshay to see what photography tips they have for me. Then I'll ask questions of my friends; I'll try to limit it to, oh say, ten questions a day. Oh. Sure. Yeah. I'll read my manual too.
You might tell me that I could read Photography for Dummies but then I would be like, "What did you just call me?!" and I would so unfollow you (unless you are just too funny for me to stay away).
I despise these books. I don't even care if they are helpful. I look away when I see a display of them in the store so as to avoid even the possibility of being suckered by them. They call people dummies. And people call themselves dummies by buying them.
Dummy: Slang A stupid person; an ignorant or foolish person.
Stupid: Very slow of apprehension or understanding; marked by, or resulting from, lack of understanding, reason, or wit; senseless.
I love informational books (Learning is awesome!) but I just don't understand the success of books that insult you. *sigh*
I tried out my new camera to document what happens when Noah spills the salsa. See?
January 11, 2010
Our long-suffering cat, Milo, went missing during a very cold, very snowy week. There was much worrying and fighting off of mental images of frozen felines.
The saga continued....Okay. The worrying was all me. Thursday at bedtime, we prayed for Milo and his safe return. Afterwards Josiah says, "Our cat is missing?" (That whole "time is relative" concept is sometimes a blessing. My plan had worked! You see, I had purposefully not drawn attention to the situation in an attempt to prevent the boys from worrying.) When Josiah asked if we would make posters for him I told him that we probably would.
Our search efforts on Thursday night were unproductive. I walked up and down the block calling for Milo. I even had John dig out the sewer, which had been blocked by a wall of snow, to see if perhaps Milo had gone in there and been trapped by the snow plows.
Friday morning, John made the requested "Missing Cat" posters and placed one at each end of the block. Within just a couple of hours, we got a phone call from a lady who thought that it was our cat which she had housed for a night. When she wasn't able to find his owners the next day, she took him to the ANNA shelter.
John called the shelter and they confirmed that our description matched the cat there; however, the shelter is only open three hours a day and they were closing in 5 minutes. Seriously? Three hours? We had to wait until Saturday to (hopefully) retrieve our Milo.
John went to the shelter Saturday while I was at class. I gave him a call during my break. It went something like this:
Later, Josiah asked me what "fixed" means. I told him that Milo wouldn't be able to be a daddy now unless, of course, he already is. "He can't be a daddy? What if he already was?" "Well, then he'll still be a daddy but he won't have any more little cat babies", then recalling that he already knows that girls have the babies I added, "He can't help a girl cat have kittens anymore." The questioning continues, "Why not?" *sigh* After trying to gauge how much information he will need to be satisfied, I tell him, "They did a surgery that cut the tubes that carry the cat seeds to the girl cat." His next question was "Can he be a grandpa?". So I inform him, "Not unless he already has kittens out there somewhere and then they have kittens some day." The follow-up question: "Well, can he be an uncle?" Not sure where this is going I ask, "Hm?" Josiah clarifies, "If he meets a girl cat and she has kittens already, can he be their uncle or something?" I responded, "Yeah, sure." Satisfaction was achieved. *and there was much rejoicing*Me: Hi. Whatcha doing? (asked just like Isabella asks Phineas and Ferb)John: I got the cat.Me: Our cat is home?John: Yep. We had to pay $35 to get him back.Me: Really.John: Yeah, but while he was there he drove them crazy by spraying all the time.Me: Milo was spraying? (He has never done that at home.)John: Every time a male cat came near.Me: Oh.John: So they fixed him.Me: What? They just neutered a person's cat!?John: Apparently, he was driving them crazy and it was before we called.Me: They didn't take out his claws, did they?John: I don't think so... but they gave him his shots too.Me: Huh. *inwardly thrilled that our cat was neutered and shot up for a mere $35*John: They told me that he was spraying so much that they made the vet squeeze him in right away.Me: Okay. See you later. *and there was much rejoicing*
To sum up: Cat was missing. Cat was found, slightly altered. No more man whore cat.
January 8, 2010
This is actually the snow-date class. The original dates were December 11-12 but a snow storm came, the roads were bad, and it was pushed back until now.
Guess what? I still have to finish my homework. That's right. Still.
Of course, the morning of the original class date I had laid out all the books and notes that I needed to write my two essays but then the class cancellation phone call came and I immediately re-prioritized my day. After all, I had just been given the time to catch up on the previous days' tasks. I don't remember what those tasks were but I'm sure they were very, very important.
My month in which to finish the homework quickly filled with shopping (that Christmas deadline was looming), decorating (Christmas again), planning (um.. yeah), cooking (there's always that except when I don't do it), celebrating (Christmas! and New Years! and football not so much), visiting (must be social), playing (new games, ya know), reading the novels which I received for Christmas (I certainly don't want to seem ungrateful!), and, yes, blogging (the monologue in my head has to come out sometime).
That brings me to today and I find myself just a bit closer to completion on the homework front. (The Mentalist was a rerun last night so I wrote an essay then.) It's not like the homework is hard; it will just take a block of my time. Once more I must bust out the books and notes and write that last essay... after I finish cooking a special breakfast for my guys.
I hear another storm is heading my way too.....
January 7, 2010
I realize you are a well-liked, well-trained, gets-along-with-dogs, friendly cat and that others in the neighborhood may like to visit with you. However, you've been out visiting for two days and two nights now and I worry about you. Why have you chosen this cold, snowy week as the time when you don't come home at night?
Are you stuck inside another person's house thinking of us as we are thinking of you? I know you can be most persuasive when you want outside. Can you try to convince them that you desperately need outdoors for your *ahem* "seed sowing" time? Or is that what has caused this situation in the first place? Have you been tamed by a female feline?
I realize that you are a desirable cat. Your list of quality attributes is impressive for a cat:
1. You stay off tables and kitchen counters. That is a quality many cat owners only dream about. Give a big thank you to Nathan for that since it was his task to chase you down yelling, "CAT! CAT! CAT!" when I was otherwise occupied with nursing the baby.
2. You play well with others. After being brought to our home when you were a little kitten, you were immediately immersed in the atmosphere where young children and a curious dog were simply accepted as the norm.
3. You've never ruined a piece of furniture even though you have all your claws.
4. You cuddle in the evenings and are a great foot warmer.
5. You allow yourself to be picked up pretty much any way and any time. Again, a big thanks to the boys and especially Nathan for their training in this area.
6. You prefer to poop outside rather than your litter box which is a thoughtful attribute that I greatly appreciate.
7. Although you may sleep on the beds during the day, you know that downstairs is your designated territory for nighttime.
Milo, I want to know you are safe. Please come home! We love you and miss you.
January 6, 2010
Okay. Maybe not THAT much snow.
Thank God for that spitting snow; otherwise our weather would be pretty redundant!
January 5, 2010
This is my dad's story through the Micah filter:
"At 2:43 the neighbors across the street came home in their car. Got out and went into the house. But they left their car door open!
Exactly two hours later, he came out to close the door but then she got into the car and drove away. Only to return three minutes later."
Me: "What is this? The Burbs?"
Holly: (bursts out laughing) "You guys are scary. That's what Micah said!"
Dad: (chuckling and wondering what the Burbs are though aware it must be a movie)
Me: "Are you writing this down?"
Holly: (cracking up) "Oh my gosh! Micah asked him if he was keeping a log!" (Holly thinks I'm funny; she has an excellent sense of humor.)
Me: (thinking maybe we can get Dad some kind of recording device for his birthday so he can walk away from his big ol' Burb window more often)
Dad: (still laughing at us and himself)
In other news, my other brother, Matt, just got a scanner. He has probably been dreaming of this ever since he was a kid listening to my grandpa's emergency frequency scanner. I hope he keeps posting stuff like this on his facebook status: "I overheard the dispatcher ask an officer "are you on something?" Nothing like a lawman under the influence! (By the way, I do know what she meant.)"
My mom used to be a teacher and everyone knows that they have eyes in the back of their head.
My kids think I have an uncanny sense of knowing what's going on in other parts of the house. What can I say? It's in my blood.
So.... if you think you think you're being watched...
You probably are.
Now if you'll excuse me... I've got to stalk, er, I mean, check in on my other blog writing friends.
UPDATE: My dad called to let me know that it was he who shut the car door for his neighbor. Also, his neighbor has come outside and moved his truck after not being out in about four days (which is unusual for him) so he must have been sick and is now feeling better.
Steve (I think that's his name; I'll have to call my dad to be sure.), I'm glad you're feeling better.
January 4, 2010
We were agreed.
However, there was no stipulation that he couldn't pester me to actually get out the door and into the car and so he kept checking in with me to see when we were leaving.
At last, I said, "Okay. I just need to look in the mirror to see what needs done." "What do you mean?", he asked. "Well, I'll have to comb my hair and stuff.", I informed him. Always the helper, Josiah looks me over and matter-of-factly says, "I think you're going to have to comb your hair, put on some make-up, and... put your contacts in. Oh, and change your clothes because you're still wearing kind of pajamas."
Huh. This from the same boy who frequently forgets to comb his own hair and wears oversized, undersized, ripped, and stained clothes just because he likes them.
Thanks for tips, kid. How would I pull myself together without you?
January 2, 2010
Of course, my first question is "Nathan, where are your clothes?" and the answer is simply "I don't need them."
While I am focusing on finding clothes which my child actually does need to keep warm around here, the words "trap" and "cat" and then "cat trap" filter through to me. "What are you guys talking about?" Josiah then directs my attention to their newest contraption. "Oh wow... Is the cat IN there? Okay. Let the cat out, please. Thanks."
I'm not sure if they placed the cat inside the trap or lured him in with his food bowl but he was indeed trapped and seemed very accepting of his fate. He emerged slowly when Josiah opened the trap door. Though I don't condone trapping the cat, I admitted to myself that their setup was pretty cool. Maybe they've been watching too much Phineas and Ferb....