Monday, November 30, 2009

Michael's Good News

Michael went to the dentist today, where he sat in the chair, let the dentist look at his teeth, let the assistant brush his teeth with the special toothpaste *and* take x-rays! Wahoo!

He has come so far! From gagging if anything was put in his mouth, to letting me brush a quadrant of his teeth before pushing me away, to letting me brush all of his teeth but not letting the dentist look inside of his mouth to this! Life is awesome!

What was your good news today?

Sunday, November 29, 2009


I've always hated art contests. They are totally based on people's opinions which are then treated as fact. Bah.

So why am I thinking of entering the next one that comes along?!?

Congratulations to the End of the Line Photo winners.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I was up at 6:30 preparing the stuffing and the turkey. I wanted to get it in the oven early this year! What I really wanted to be doing is the same thing Tigger was:

I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, full of all of the good things the day can hold for you!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Our Anniversary - the travelog version :-)

So Saturday was Steve's and my 14th Wedding Anniversary. If you missed the pics of the beautiful countryside I saw, you can see them here and here.

This was where we stayed on Friday and Saturday night.

(In fact, that was our room: the one where the maid's cart is parked.)

It was wonderful! Rarely do we get a motel room on our anniversary, but after all of the excitement of the past year, we needed to get away! So we used our anniversary as a great excuse to go on a little mini-vacation, just the two of us.

We did romantic stuff, like going to dinner, watching New Moon, holding hands and cuddling like teenagers, but it was wonderful to be secure enough in our relationship with each other where we could be together but separate too, know what I mean?

Like he worked on his novel for a bit; I can't remember what it is called, but it is the 50,000 word novel challenge they have going each November. While he worked on that, I looked up the website for a local natural history museum to see if the photography art show was going on; it wasn't and the site talked about open entries and deadlines and previous winners. (Photography has become my newest passion. I love it! I wish that I had a fancy-dancy camera instead of a point-and- shoot, but thank heavens for my point-and-shoot! I don't know what I'd do without my nice camera from last Christmas!) Anyway, so we sat side-by-side, him on his laptop and me on the motel's lobby computer and surfed the net, wrote some facebook posts, together yet separate.

We read, watched tv (maybe I shouldn't admit this, but when I was watching tv on Friday looking for Smallville I happened upon "Grounded for Life" on MTV. I *loved* it! It was so over-the-top funny... like Roseanne. Family moments aren't the ideal in these shows, but sometime seeing someone else's problems be worse than your own is comforting. :-), snacked on Grasshopper cookies (can you say, "cheap year-round substitute for Girl Scout cookies"? Absolute heaven!!), and had a wonderful, wonderful relaxing time.

Oh yeah, and I dragged him to the laundromat. But only for an hour or so total, I swear! I have found that I'm way attached to one particular comforter. It is light and fluffy, yet toasty warm. I've never been attached to a "blankie" before, but better late than never, no? It had had some of Michael's formula spilled on it, so it had been out-of-commission for a week. I couldn't stand to have one more restless night's sleep w/o. So with Steve, who never complained a bit, we went to the laundromat. My husband is a prize I tell you! After the laundromat, we went and saw _New Moon_.

Have you seen it yet? Our viewing session comprised of probably 97.9% women; just a few men tagging along with their wives, probably hoping to be rewarded later for their sacrifice since they really didn't look like they were excited to be there.

So the girls and women "awwwww"-ed in all the right spots, and when Jacob took off his shirt to hold on Bella's bleeding head a chorus of "ooooohhhhhhh"-s were heard and one lone man in the back loudly said, "Oh come on!" That made me laugh! Poor men!

At Walmart later on that night we talked to a guy who was trying to make up with his wife via texting; he stopped me and was asking for the perfect word to describe how Bella needed Jacob. That was an interesting conversation! Steve came over and offered his word-knowledge-help... okay, I asked for it. After finding the word, the guy told us he'd gone to see _New Moon_ with his wife earlier in the day. He liked it and thought it was a great movie, but that the meadow scene was too long and boring. And the fighting scene with the bad vampire and the werewolves would have been so cool and they hardly showed any of it! It's all about perspective, I tell ya.

I liked the movie. I felt sorry for Edward's lack of physique after seeing Jacob, though! So even though Jacob's six-pack abs were amazing, I have to tell you that I can't think of the guys in the movie in any way other than I do my sons. It's a great story and I loved the books even better than the movies ... but they are just boys and girls. I think I'm getting old. :-)

Oh! Have you seen the preview for _Letters to Juliet_ yet?! That is the next movie I'm going to drag poor Steve too. And he saw the preview for the new Sherlock Holmes movie and was impressed, so I'm sure we'll go to that one too.

So through all of my wandering thoughts in this post, I've told you of the many reasons I love and appreciate being married to Steve: we are sweethearts, lovers, but most of all: best friends. We bend and go see movies that we don't mind seeing but probably wouldn't choose for ourselves. We can sit in silence and it's comfortable. We are aware of each other's imperfections (and our own!) and love each other anyway. It is a very comfortable, companionable, sweet, loving relationship.

I've said very often to him, that as independent as I am it is a wonder that I'm married and stay married. I think Steve feels the same way about himself. We are a good fit. A wonderful match. I'm glad, and very thankful, that I have him.

See, I am the hard-headed, independent, hard-to-get-along-with woman like Princess Leia, or Jessica - from _The Man from Snowy River_, or Buttercup - from _The Princess Bride_... you get my point. I'm not the soft, gentle woman that is easy to get along with. I'm feisty and prickly. I think that most men would get to know me and run... as fast as they can! So I'm glad that Steve is kind, and patient, and easy to get along with. In his birth family he's the oldest; I'm the baby ( but more like an only child). 'Nough said. I truly feel that it was only because of God's hand that we got together in the first place, and how thankful I am for that!

So, Happy Anniversary, Sweetheart! Our marriage has been eventful, to say the least! But I'm glad that it is with you that I'm taking this crazy rollercoaster ride called life! Thank you for being my everything!


Monday, November 23, 2009

Home, Home on the Range

Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam

where the deer and the antelope play.

Where seldom is heard a discouraging word

and the skies are not cloudy all day.

Home, home on the range.....

Between yesterday and today you saw a lot of the sights I did on my Anniversary get-away with Steve.

We've been married for 14 fabulous years. May we have many, many more!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Silent Sunday - 11/22/09

Click on picture to enlarge.

But this is the best thing I saw all weekend:

This man has been my sweetheart now for the past 14 years. I'll tell you more tomorrow. :-)

Friday, November 20, 2009

A Re-run

SouleMama has a "Friday from the Archives" thing going for her, so I looked back on my posts last year for an entertaining one to share. This is the one I found. Background: Steve & I had gone to Park City, Utah for our anniversary and roamed around the shops and musuems.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

My favorite shop (other than the art galleries) had hilarious door mats and plaques.
Here are just a few:

I take life with a grain of salt, a wedge of lime, and a shot of tequila.

Go braless . . . It'll pull the wrinkles out of your face!

We've been through a lot together . . . and most of it was your fault!

My husband and I have different religions. He thinks he's God, and I don't!

Friends are like thighs, always sticking together.

I smile cause your my sister. I laugh because there's nothing you can do about it!

Put on your big girl panties and deal with it!

You'll always be my best friend . . . You know too much.

Shopping with your husband is like hunting with the game warden.

Around here, "normal" is just a setting on the dryer.

The mats were funny too. I only remember a couple, but one simply says, "Hi! My name is Mat."


"I love my vacuum.
I've found God.
I gave at the office."

We visited a lot of art galleries. I am amazed at the talent those people have! Here are some of their websites, so you can look at the some of the art without even leaving your home:

West Light Images

Stanfield Fine Art You'll have to keep reminding yourself that these are paintings, not photos!

Hope Gallery, Inc.

Scanlan Windows to the World It is too bad that they didn't post the description of the picture on their website; it is as much art as the photos themselves.

There are beautiful, beautiful pictures at those sites, so I hope you get a chance to look.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

BTW, I edited it. I didn't retell the entire post, like the part about the CT scan I'd had. If you want to see the full post, you can read it here.

I plan on having an absolutely wonderful weekend, and I hope you do too! :-)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Silent Sunday - November 15th

I was playing with these photos again. I think these are some of my favorite landscapes. Just by cropping, the entire picture changes. I don't think I could ever tire of this scenery!

I made them clickable (they will open in a different window; just maximize the screen to see the enlarged pic.) so that you can enlarge them and enjoy them even more.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Seeing the world through rose colored glasses. And purple. And blue. And...

Please don't mention housework. Especially not laundry or dishes. Because I'd feel really guilty about sitting on my bahookie playing around with pics if you do. I'd love some warm, homemade brownies... and the only thing standing between me and those extra five pounds is this stupid pain in the neck. No really, a pain in the neck. Really, a pain in my neck, not some euphemism.

I've already done one blog post today, so if you've missed it, be sure to back track so that you can get those recipes and see the real life Hobbit House, okay?

Okay, so anyway, here I've sat playing with colors for the past hour or so. The first pics are about a lone leaf on my tree just outside my window. I've loved watching that tree all fall: its brilliant golden leaves framed in the bluest of blue skies. Until two days ago, when all of her leaves are gone but just a handful.

The leaf that has intrigued me most is the one that's way out on the limb. One sole leaf, framed in darkened skies, waving on the limb through all of the gusts that stripped his brothers and sisters away. He is "Tenacious". (it is the same pic all 4 times, just with the color played with. the first pic is the original straight-out-of-the-camera shot.)





This morning it happened to snow. As I looked across the valley I noticed clouds covering the foothills of the mountain, leaving the peaks looking fairytale-like. All that was missing was the castle atop. All of these enlarge if you click on them.

I think I'm going to go make those brownies now. My children and my tastebuds will thank me. Then I'll bribe the kids to do the dishes. And maybe I'll throw in a load of laundry for good measure.

(P.S. I'm curious which one of the four leaf shots you like best. When you comment, will you just tell which one you liked best? Thanks!)

Places I've Been and Interesting Things I've Seen This Morning

I've enjoyed reading your blogs today! Along with reading interesting and funny things about your family and lives, I've also seen a real life Hobbit House and added a couple of new recipes to my recipe book. Take a look at these!:

I saw a really beautiful and interesting Hobbit Home from a link Tracey put on her blog at Life in Sugar Hollow.

She also gave a link for Sweet Roasted Butternut Squash and Greens Over Bow-Tie Pasta that I'd like to try.

From beauty that moves I learned how to make homemade chicken nuggets. My family will be delighted to eat these. They look and sound scrumdiliumptious!

As for me, I can only look right.... I mean, to the right. If you were standing behind my left shoulder I'd have to turn my full body around to look at you. Even sneezing, which I'm doing a lot of, is torturous.

There are some beautiful photo opportunities this morning: from the nights dusting of snow to a picturesque mountain scape with the peak shining above the clouds. But I don't want to go outside... because it's cold and because my neck hurts. It is terrible when photography becomes a pain in the neck! Maybe I'll just have to toughen up, though, because these sights are too good to not capture!

So I'll see you (hopefully more easily than today!) tomorrow. I hope to show you the beautiful scenery that I'm seeing today... over my right shoulder. ;-)

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Her Jealousy Runs Deep

This cat has wound his way into my heart. All you have to do is *look* at him and he purrs. And he is a very snuggly.

Today he was sleeping on the floor so serenely, so I decided to grab my camera and take a picture.

And Meg, my very jealous baby came into the kitchen to see what I was up to.

How she knew I was taking a picture and that she should be in it is beyond me, but she layed down and posed.

Meg and Tigger. My two favorite animals. May they live long and prosper.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This week Aiden is 30 weeks gestation. Everything is going well. They went to the doctor on Tuesday and everything looks great. What a blessing! (I made this part big so that you wouldn't worry that there were complications w/ the pregnancy. No complications, I'm just thinking back about to about 8 1/2 years ago....)


30 weeks gestation is the same age Michael was when he was born.

Michael was born early because the placenta detached from my uterus (placental abruption) and caused me to hemorrhage. He was in the NICU for about 14 weeks. A very long time for our family, since Michael and I were separated from the rest of the family by a 2 hour commute. We'd see them every couple of weeks, which just wasn't enough.

But thank heavens for the Ronald McDonald House charity! I stayed in the Louisville Ronald McDonald House for most of the time Michael was in the NICU, taking off a few days here and there to go and be with the family. At those times, Steve traded me places to take care of Michael.

Here is how big a 30 week baby is (that is my hand):

It's been funny to watch Karen's pregnancy. She already passed the mark when Ammon, our fifth baby, was born. He was the child between Emily and Matt. He was way too little to survive being just 25 weeks gestation. His birthday is on mine, which is an interesting twist of fate. Now here she is at Michael's age at birth. In another 5 weeks she'll be 35 weeks, which is how old Matt was when he was born.

The doctors don't know why my uterus wouldn't hold my babies to term. The first 4 were fine, but the last 3 all came early.

So this is an interesting time for me. I'm so glad that Aiden is healthy, and so happy that he is still inside his mommy. It's the best place for a baby to be! This is just an interesting perspective that I'm watching her pregnancy from.

Here is Michael at a year old:

He is a survivor. He was our tortoise and it took him forever to do the basics like eat and breathe, but slow and steady wins the race.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

November Photo Contest

I'm doing it again! This time I've made sure that I'm not too late to enter the Picture This' Photo Contest. November's contest is entitled "End of the Line." (The deadline is 11:59 pm Eastern time on Sunday, November 22nd )

These are the parameters set by the contest:
"I’ve selected the November theme, END OF THE LINE. This may be presented metaphorically, such as in the final push of a last dahlia out of a battered heap of leaves and stems or a last clinging leaf: as well as images showing the end of this year’s garden.

It can also be interpreted in your photos literally: using lines as strong components of the image, such as a distinct branch or stem or perhaps the terminus of a perspective or a linear structure. A top prize will be awarded for best symbolic use of the theme as well as a literal use: but photos combining both interpretations will receive the highest commendation. As an example, a landscape of trees in fall color would be good, but a shot sighting down a pair of train tracks curving away into that scene of autumn glory would be great! A row of corn with one last ear in focus… a dangling vine with a single fruit hanging forlorn at the end. Got it?"

So since the entries can show the "End of the Line" figuratively or literally. I've chosen to do both:


I took this pic w/o knowledge of the photo contest, but it works perfectly I think.

..... I was totally convinced that pic would be best, but after writing about it in this post and publishing it, I've started wondering ... would one of these work better instead? ...




What do you think? I'll label each of the pics, you let me know what you think, ok?

If you enter the photo contest be sure to tell me so that I can admire your pic!