Monday, January 31, 2011

my 33 pound waif

well, layla is a happy little girl. she has her very own GIRLIE, big kid booster seat.

we had a little bit of a dilemma. the car seat that layla has been using was a traditional 5 point harness CAR SEAT. you know, ages 1 and up. it had the little seat belt guides in it, so you can use it as a booster for kids over 30 lbs. that’s all fine and dandy, except when you’re 5 years old and a BIG kid, you don’t want to be see with ‘baby buckles’ in your seat. the other problem is that the arm rests on the seat were so high, she couldn’t reach the buckle to fasten or unfasten her seat belt herself.

so a couple of weeks ago, I put her on the scale. I wanted to see how close she was to the 40 pound mark. the magic number where you can ride in a backless booster seat. this is only magical because we happen to have THREE of these seats floating around. I did not want to have to buy another booster seat.

33 pounds. it’ll be awhile.

so, out of curiousity, I put micah on the scale.

32 pounds. hahahaha!

I happened to see that target had the graco full-backed turbobooster on sale, so I decided to just go ahead and do it. she was with me, and as soon as she saw the box that had the PINK seat in it with the pink and purple flowers and butterflies on it, she was IN LOVE. she begged for it. it’s non-girlie counterpart was BORING. tan. with tiny blue polka dots. blah. and I justified it with the logic that micah is only 3 and he already weighs 32 pounds. by the time he’s old enough for this sort of seat to even be an issue, he’ll be way past the 40 pound mark, so can bypass this kind of seat completely. so the hand-me-down thing was not really an issue. besides, layla will probably still not be heavy enough to NOT use it! haha!


Sunday, January 30, 2011

2011 week 4 in pictures

sunday:040 I stayed home from church with the boys, who had colds, and dave took layla. after, they stopped at the brown bag for a brunch date. layla was double fisting her water and apple juice.

monday:003layla brought home one of these breyer horse books from the school loved it. so I looked up at the library to see if they had them and ordered a bunch. she was SO excited. and apparently this is what she does, when excited…


no picture, but layla drew a picture of her missing the bus to go along with this, which I included in the book.

wednesday:015 tried out my dehydrator. dried apples are sooooo yummy!

thursday:008 layla doing homework and micah ‘helping’.

friday:016it was moms night out for me, so dave took the kids to cold stone. they love it when I leave.

saturday:019a little game of sorry. micah is not really ready for it, but with some help, he managed for awhile. it’s tough because he really wants to play.

there was also a 8x10 collage of extras and another which included various shots of this:007 the kids were trying to get dave off the couch… or maybe they were trying to do bodily damage… not sure which.

Friday, January 28, 2011

dried fruit

several months ago, my aunt gave me the food dehydrator that my uncle built. I have to admit, it is a bit big and formidable, and I was intimidated by it. which is likely why I haven’t used it until now.

well, I had bunch of bananas that were getting a little ‘ripe’. since I already have a freezer full of ‘banana bread’ bananas, I decided to slice them up and see how it would work to dry them. so I did. 3 whole trays of sliced bananas and slightly less than 24 hours later, we have this:012

I’ve tried them and they’re pretty yummy. my kids think they look gross, so we’ll see how successful I’ll be at getting them eaten…

I learned something though… if they’re too ripe for me to want to eat normally, they’re probably too ripe for me to like them dried as well. oh well. they’re just a little sweet. but I did eliminate the gag factor by drying them! always a bonus.

since that was so successful, I decided to try some apples. I had some granny smiths in the fruit bowl that now look like this:015

I took this picture through the little hole in the front of the dehydrator. I kinda feel like I’m spying on them. 013

by morning, they should be done!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

there was a mosquito in the bathroom.

I woke up this morning with a migraine. got up, took some tylenol, drank some water, promptly threw it up, went back to bed and stayed there all day. well, almost all day…

dave was a saint and got the kids all sorted out and taken to their various destinations before going to work. micah stayed with my parents, and my dad volunteered to meet layla’s bus and then take her back to their house until dave came and got them after work. that way I could sleep in a quiet house all day. everything SHOULD have gone smoothly.

around 11:55am, approximately when my dad would have been waiting for the bus to arrive and deposit my daughter, I get a call from the school.

“hello, this is so-and-so, an assistant at (name of school). layla missed the bus today.”

seriously. she missed the bus. the mid-day, kindergarten bus. my response was, “how is that even possible?”

the lady on the other end told me that the mother of one of layla’s classmates was in the office and had offered to bring layla home for me, if I authorized it. I explain that I was sick and that layla’s grandfather is supposed to be picking her up from the bus, so I need to call him and let him know what’s going on, and that he might just go and pick her up. I said I would call back and let them know what was happening.

I called my dad’s cell phone.

he didn’t answer.

I walked out of the house and down the street in my pajamas (head still throbbing, by the way) to see if I could see him waiting at the bus stop (2 blocks down the road), and possibly wave my arms or jump up and down like a crazy person to alert him to the fact that we have a situation. I couldn’t see him.

so I called the school back and authorized for the friend to bring her home.

my phone rings.

it’s my mom.

“did you just call me?” 

typical of my parents. they don’t know how to use the caller id function on their cell phone, so if it rings and they miss the call, they call me, then dave, to see if we called them.

“no, I didn’t call you. I’m trying to call dad!”

“oh, he left the phone here.”

“great. I really need to talk to him.” and I proceed to explain the situation to my mother.

“how is that possible?” is her question…

I still don’t know the answer to this question, and my head is still throbbing. I can’t leave to go try and find my dad because my daughter is supposed to be being dropped off at my house momentarily, and I have no car anyway, because my husband took it this morning.

my mother is speculating that my father is likely very confused, concerned, etc., and that if the bus goes by and doesn’t drop her off, he’d likely go to the school… so I decided to call the school and warn them that a very confused grandfather might be showing up there.

“hello, this is layla’s mother… again.”

“oh yes, her grandfather just showed up and picked her up.”

“oh good. I was going to warn you that he might be coming there, and that he’d probably be pretty confused.”

“layla’s teacher is right her and would like to speak to you.”

great! now I can finally figure out how my daughter managed to MISS THE BUS! it’s not like they are just released when the bell rings to find their own way to the bus. they line up and she leads them all out TO THE BUS together.

so she gets on the phone and tells me, “this is the story of how layla missed the bus:”

I can already tell it’s going to be good.

“there was a mosquito in the bathroom.”

I mean, seriously. she really didn’t have to go any further than that. I was already laughing (despite the pounding head) and could just see the disaster that was about to unfold…

apparently near the end of the day, layla went to use the bathroom. she came running back 5 seconds later, “there’s a mosquito in the bathroom! there’s a mosquito in the bathroom!” she was sent back with instructions to use a different stall and that the mosquito wouldn’t hurt her.

8 minutes later, she still hadn’t returned.

a student was sent to retrieve her.

she still didn’t return.

another student was sent to retrieve her.

she still didn’t return.

at this point, it was dismissal time, layla is still not back, her stuff is not packed up, and the teacher has to get the other kids to the bus. so she calls the office and requests some one to come and ‘help’ my daughter while she takes the rest of the class to the bus.

apparently, by the time all of this was accomplished, the bus had left.

why this had to happen today, I have no idea. what she was doing in there for 10 minutes with the mosquito, I have no idea. although, when I asked her about it, she said something about ‘all the boys were trying to get the mosquito for me’… so at least she is good at invoking feelings of chivalry in boys… why they were in the girls’ side of the bathroom, I don’t know…

and then I get the classroom update email for the week. this is copied and pasted directly out of the teacher’s letter:

A Bug in the Bathroom
You may have already heard the exciting story, but there was a mosquito in the girl’s bathroom today.  I actually never saw it, so who knows what kind of bug it really was.  It caused quite a bit of drama.  There were a few behavior issues to deal with as a result of the bug, but I have to smile to myself; only in kindergarten can a tiny bug steal the show!  The energy of young children is one of the many reasons I love being a kindergarten teacher.

yes. my daughter’s antics made the newsletter.


I just love seeing words like drama, behavior issues, and energy in reference to my child. I have taught young children. I know EXACTLY what that means.

at any rate, at least she is understanding, and has kids of her own… right?

oh geez. only my child. I swear she’s becoming my own little ramona quimby… what WILL I do with her?

in other news, after spending the day in bed and praying for the sun to hurry up and go down so my room wouldn’t be so bright even with the blinds closed, I finally got brave enough to try taking some migraine medicine. within half an hour I was feeling human again and was able to snuggle with my kids when dave brought them home.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

2011 week 3 in pictures

sunday:016 layla and dave rockin’ out to a song layla was learing in sunday school and dave happened to know how to play.

monday:026 mcdonald’s play place. this, of course, is a cage, and they (at least layla) are obviously dogs.

tuesday:020 getting to work on project life! so much fun! love love love!

wednesday:002 walking home from the bus stop.

thursday:020 layla wanted to roller skate, but wasn’t going to be deterred by the fact that she didn’t actually own any roller skates…

friday:028 check it out! that’s my bedding from junior high! found it in my parents’ linen closet and brought it home to see if layla liked it.

saturday:001 shane and micah, playing some mario kart together.

there are also 2 missing 8x10 collages with all the extra pics from the week.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

“tolerant” toby

you may recall that shane got a cat for his birthday. as it turns out, toby is absolutely the BEST cat we could have hoped for. he is a very nice cat. he is SO tolerant. seriously, the kids just haul him around and impose all sorts of ‘love’ on him, and he just deals with it. layla, especially is very fond of toby.006001011

micah loves him too… he especially loves to feed him. ahem. all the time. 017

shane is well bonded to his cat. he sleeps with him every night, and has taken over shane’s room as his own. sometimes, if shane’s not home, I’ll find toby asleep on his bed, laying on the shirt he slept in that night. awww…

shane also likes to ‘play’ with toby… he recently decided to dress him up… how he accomplished this, I have no idea. but like I said. amazingly tolerant.061

his most recent moment of brilliance was equipping toby with a head (or should I say, chest) lamp. it was flashing. not sure this was toby’s favorite, but the kids thought it was hilarious.006

so yes, everyone LOVES toby. best cat ever.


okay, well, not everyone.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

a dose of daily life

just the average, every day…

dave and micah have quite the little bond going on right now. it’s very cute how ‘daddy’ oriented he’s become lately. he even sneaks in every night to snuggle up and sleep with him…007012017

yup. that’s his lap top.027

layla likes dogs. a lot. in fact, she wants to BE a dog. every day, she has a new scheme for how she will BE a dog. here, she took tupperware containers out of the drawer, and set up food and water bowls for everyone on the kitchen floor. then they drank out of them.037

another day, she made a dog bed for herself… in the shelving unit.022

the latest is that she wants to be a ‘working dog’, so she made herself a cape… I guess if she must be a dog, she may as well make herself useful…005

and then there’s micah, who stuck these foam square things on his face and declared himself to be a cat. (those are the whiskers.)003

and then he climbed into the cat crate. yes, he fit.010

of course, then everyone tried it.014

all shane could fit was his head.015

micah is OBSESSED with the wii. he is able to play most of the sports resort games independently. this is speed slice, but I think his favorite is table tennis, which he calls ‘tennis table’. pretty cute.009

layla and daddy rocking out!016

a MOMS club playdate at mcdonalds. and yes, layla’s tongue is hanging out because she is a dog. panting. in a kennel…026

this is what they took as an appropriate response to the instructions, “go get your jammies on.” layla, at least, has them on UNDER the ballerina costume… micah is apparently confused by the difference between sleepwear and swimwear. then they made the little couch into a pool and took turns diving into it.030

walking home from the bus…002

and the best find EVER, layla brought home another horse book from the school library this week. she had a different one last week and was sad to have to return it. I suggested she look where she found the first one, to see if they had any more. she was SO excited that they did, and there’s at least 2 more on the shelf! 004

I guess horses are on her list of favorite things right now, in addition to dogs. actually, she and shane have both been lobbying for riding lessons… not really seeing that in the budget any time soon.

Monday, January 17, 2011


I know I’m one of those people that, when I get excited about something, I get REALLY excited. it is one of those things that dave and I like to tease each other about. he’s so even-keeled, that it drives me nuts when he’s not jumping up and down about stuff he’s supposedly excited about… and he thinks it’s odd that I have reactions of ecstasy over things like… really good strawberries, for instance, or when the daffodils push their little green heads up out of the ground (which they are doing right now, btw. **you can’t see it, but this is me jumping up and down**)

at any rate, I’m SUPER excited about something right now: project life! mary turned me on to this, and I was totally skeptical at first. I didn’t get it. she started this last year, and kept raving and raving about how wonderful it was and all that… so, of course, I was intrigued. I started following becky higgins’ blog, and I started to get excited about the prospect of doing this myself.

SO, what is it? well, it’s a photo album. it’s a scrapbook. it’s a year of your life.

I’ve always been a hardcore, traditionalist scrapbooker. I was even a creative memories consultant for like 2 years (before I accepted the fact that I SUCK at selling stuff and called it quits). I have hundreds of dollars of scrapbooking supplies that I never use. why? because I have young children. I’m busy. I have a small house with no place to spread all my junk out and be creative and LEAVE it there for the next time I feel like working on it. my kids like stickers and scissors and fancy paper, and all that, and would like nothing more than to destroy it! and so it sits. along with the thousands of pictures I have in a box, not to mention, the 6 years’ worth of digital ones I have on my computer. and the guilt meter is ringing up a very high number on this mom.

so here’s the deal with project life. there’s none of that. nothing to cut, nothing to stick, nothing to ‘create’. no sharp tools to cut off your children’s fingers, no stickers to find stuck on the doors or floor, no 14 million different designs of paper and die-cuts to coordinate. everything is there. everything you need, except your pictures and your words about them, to document a year of your family’s life. it allows you to focus on the every day, as well as the big events. the holidays, the birthdays, the vacations, the field trips. but it also encourages the date night, the first day of school, the funny outfit, the spilled milk, the encounter with the neighbor’s dog, and yes, even the little green heads of the daffodils poking up out of the ground…

so no, this is not solving my years’ worth of pictures and memories waiting to be dealt with, but is putting a stop to the build up of new guilt. AND, it’s so fun! I totally love it. WAY more than I thought I would. so THANK YOU, MARY! thank you for being so brilliant!

So here’s the story behind how I got mine. I had decided I wanted to do this, right at the beginning of january… a good time to start, right? so I was browsing this year’s product line, but they were all sold out, for the time being. mary mentioned that she just happened to have a spare of last year’s design, that she was looking to get rid of because she had received on of the new ones for christmas. so I thought about it, and figured I was impatient enough to go for it! after all, it was my first one, so it didn’t really matter if it was last year’s or not. and so she stuck it in the mail to me.

and I waited.

and waited.

and I got more excited and more impatient.

I was already busy selecting my photos and making plans.

I thought it might come on friday.

it didn’t.

and then on saturday, the mail man had a box for me!!!!!


of course, I tore it open right away! beautiful!004

and I spent the afternoon getting it all put together. layla was super excited to help me. shane and I had even picked up my pictures at costco that morning.

I got this awesome feeling, as I was flipping the pages, putting in cards and monthly bookmarks, knowing that this was a physical representation of the year to come. blank. empty. I could see where birthdays would fall, holidays, vacations and such, but it was all there, just waiting for OUR LIFE to HAPPEN. whoa.

I’m a very visual person, so seeing that really kinda hit me as very awesome, indeed.

at any rate, I’ve been having loads of fun taking pictures, and choosing what will be our photo of the day. making sure I have my camera ready, and overcoming my feelings of stupidity and self-consciousness as I take pictures of the dog walking down the street… this is life. as it is RIGHT NOW, and I think it’s worth remembering.020

Sunday, January 16, 2011

2011 week 2 in pictures

sunday:020 in the book, actually have a collage of all the picture from our visit with kat and cole. this pic is part of the collage, but the collage itself is one of my missing pics.

monday:021 layla making a dog bed in our big shelf. it’s a pet store and she’s for sale. anybody want to buy her?

tuesday:001 snow is predicted! the kids are trying out some of those ‘old wives’ tales’ that claim to work to make it snow. pajamas inside out, spoon under your pillow, and of course, flushing an ice cube down the toilet…

wednesday:018 it worked! we have snow!

thursday:034 micah at NKCC indoor playground. I think it was a MOMS club event, but we were the only ones that showed up.

friday:037 being dogs, as usual. they have food and water dishes set out on the floor.

saturday:IMG_1821 dave’s company party at hard rock cafĂ©. fun night. good food. terrible weather! on the way out, the wind totally turned our umbrella inside-out! it was just like in mary poppins!


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