Archive - June 2007

1
Mommy Cards
2
Office Corner
3
Dinner Conversation
4
Fun With Search Terms
5
Computers and God
6
I Once Was Lost…
7
Lost!
8
More Father’s Day Wishes
9
Father’s Day
10
Dining Room Corner: Buffet Table

Mommy Cards

When we returned from Korea we spent the summer sweating it out in Norfolk, VA while Philip attended yet another military school. We were only there for 3 months, so we lived in a fully furnished 4 bedroom house that the Navy so thoughtfully provided for us. We had our “hold baggage” delivered there so that we could at least have toys, books, games and videos for the children. I was in the last trimester of my pregnancy and not in the mood to be out in the heat and humidity. I’m embarrassed to admit that we were more than a little enamored with American TV. So many choices! (But oy! the commercials! ) We particularly enjoyed watching reruns of “The Tick” on Saturday mornings and “Kim Possible” daily on the Disney Channel. At the time, Disney’s newest movie was “Sky High” which they advertised with one of my favorite 80’s hits, “I’ll Melt With You.”

Two years later, “Sky High” reached the top of our Netflix queue and showed up in our mailbox yesterday. I have to say that we all loved it! Boo and Pumpkin Girl like the action, I’m a BIG fan of all the 80’s songs. I haven’t heard The English Beat in sooo long! So this afternoon I made good use of Bip’s nap-time by going on iTunes and downloading a bunch of my favorite songs. And just like that – I’m back in high school again. Except without the angst. And with a minivan and kids added. OK, so not so much back in high school, but I’m having fun. I added my new songs to my playlist of Definitive Songs of the 80s. I’ve got 109 songs on that list!

This was all a very long way of telling you that this post is being written while I’m destroying my eardrums with my iPod. “Cuz you’ve got love, love, love on your side…”

Because what I set out to tell you about was this: Mommy Cards. Have you heard of these? They are the newest thing to have. Like business cards, they provide all the information you might like a new friend to have. Say you meet a new family at the park. Maybe you’d like to arrange more play dates at the park. Or your new friend is interested in homeschooling, or maybe even in starting a homeschooling group. Or maybe she, like you, thinks that the 80’s so totally rock man! I actually met a mom a couple of weeks ago at the ice skating rink. Both our daughters were struggling in the class and we thought maybe we could join forces and share semi-private lessons. We each dug around in our purses for papers and pens and I was fortunate enough to have printed out my receipt for the class and was able to use part of that paper so that we could exchange information.

That’s where some Mommy Cards would have been nice. When I first heard about them I kind of laughed. But then I got to really thinking about it. It’s moving season here in the military and we’re going to get a bunch of new neighbors soon. I’ll meet them at the park, at church, or I’ll take them a batch of cookies as a welcome. It would be nice to just be able to hand them a card with our names and phone number on it, to help them remember us.

So I did a Google Search for “mom business cards.” There are a lot out there and they are very cool looking. They are also very expensive! One place wanted $20 for 50, another place wanted nearly $40 for 60. Ouch. Then I thought of Vista Print, the people who do the free business cards. They’ve got lots of fun, free designs, but they also have even more that you can pay for. We had return address labels made by them with little caricature faces of each member of our family. I wondered if they made similar caricature business cards – sure enough, they do! They only want $7.99 for 50. I chose a cool, patriotic looking design and added all our faces. I saved some money and chose super slow shipping, so they’ll be here in a couple of weeks. I probably could have gone even cheaper and printed them out myself, but I prefer the look of a professional card.

So anyway, I thought I’d share my cool find. Back to my 80’s tunes…

Office Corner

I’ve been quiet lately because I’ve been working on this:

PianoCornerBefore It’s one of the corners of our “office” which is really just one end of our living room. I started working on the office area a couple of weeks ago, but I wasn’t really seeing any progress. Then I realized that I was trying to tackle the whole area at once instead of sticking to small sections at a time. So I focused on this one area near the piano. Believe or not, my poor daughter is trying to learn to play the piano. I say trying because she can’t really get at it to practice. Yes, I felt very badly about it.

In my defense, though, this little corner didn’t always look like that. This is the only “before” picture I have and it’s really more of a work-in-progress picture. This is the one corner I forgot to take a picture of before I got started! So what you are seeing is the whole purge-sort-reorganize process in action.

I started with the bookshelf which is where I keep most of our currently in use school books. The picture shows it after the purge. Take my word for it that it was a mess. Actually, don’t take my word for it. Most of what you see on the floor was on the shelves or in the cabinet. I pulled out everything we are no longer using and sorted it into piles on the floor.

Next I pulled out everything from the corner between the piano and bookshelf. It was piled about as high as the piano with all sorts of junk. A lot of it went out in the trash.

Our office was always a problem area. I’ve mentioned that we don’t have a real desk to work at or to store things in and that creates a lot of clutter. This area was also the hardest hit during our flood. A lot of the stuff in the area was moved quickly to other areas of the house or tossed into plastic bins. Then we moved and it was all boxed up as is. Not the best circumstances to try to unpack in.

So here is the after picture.

PianoCornerAfter Everything was redistributed around the house, thrown out or tagged to put in to storage. My school shelves are now organized by topic and by child. I put a basket in front of the cabinet doors to prevent 22 month old Bip from opening the doors. The basket has surplus school supplies like handwriting paper, coloring sheets, colored paper, folders and sheet protectors. And Pumpkin Girl can now get to the piano to practice! The piano itself needs more work, but that’s a post for another day.

In case you missed it, you can see the other areas of my home that I have uncluttered here: Corners of My Home. Hopefully I’ve inspired someone to tackle their own clutter and create a more peaceful home.

Dinner Conversation

Pumpkin Girl:  I’m full
Philip:  OK, give  me your plate, I’ll finish it.
Pumpkin:  That’s what I thought you’d say.
Boo: Cool Daddy, you’re like the backup stomach!

Fun With Search Terms

My little site meter is so much fun! Beyond who’s visiting my site, when, how long and where they’re from, it also tells me if they found me through a search engine, and what they were searching for.

In no particular order, here are some of the fun searches people have done that led them to my blog.

1. Jimmy Hoffa. At least 2 or 3 times a month, someone comes to my little old blog looking for Jimmy Hoffa. He’s not here. In fact, nobody is sure where is he is. Well, I’m sure someone might know, but they’re not talking. Either way, let me tell you, he’s not on my blog.

2. Mac and Cheese scientific name. Huh? That seems a bit unusual. Just what sort of “scientific” research are you trying to do? Is this a school project? I am not the scientific type, so offhand, I don’t have the answer. However, I’m the language arts type, so I typed “mac and cheese” into a online English to Latin translator and came up with this: mac quod caseus. Hope that helps.

3. Lorri. Hi! Glad you found me, was I lost? I know we move around a lot, but I thought we do a good job keeping everyone up to date. Unless of course, we were trying to lose you.

4. Why child love mac and cheese. I would guess it’s the cheese, butter, cheese, milk and cheese.

5. Hairy monster. Nope, none here. Have you tried asking Jimmy Hoffa?

6. Pumpkin mac and cheese. May I suggest you make a pie or bread instead?

7. Do you have a picture of a can of franco-american mac and cheese in a can? Wow. That is the most complete search query I’ve ever seen. But sorry, no, I don’t have that picture.

8. Parenting mac and cheese. I guess I talk a lot about parenting on my blog, seeing as how I am a parent. In all honesty, though, I don’t parent the mac and cheese. I eat it.

Computers and God

Our computer has been running slow lately. So slow that when I power it up, I have time to go prepare breakfast for me and Bip before the computer’s ready to go. Forget trying to get it to print anything. I click “print” and nothing happens. I lean over and look at the printer. I click “print” again. And again, for good measure. I wiggle the mouse around and say, “Please! Hello? Print?” I click “print” again. I go over to Ask Sister Mary Martha to see if she knows who the patron saint of computers is so I can start a novena, but my computer won’t load her blog. I tell the computer it’s not just a pig, but a Big Pig, cuz you know, that helps. I get up and fill my water bottle. I return to find 3 pages waiting for me (I only wanted one) and the 4th one is printing.

Great.

I try to close the document I was working on. Nothing.

Sigh.

Rinse, lather, repeat.

So I keep telling my husband that I’m calling those computer geek guys. They make house calls,  which means they can brave the dangers of the DC Beltway instead of me. I’m all for the staying home and having people come to me. If I had a posse, cronies or peeps, they would all be wearing UPS uniforms. The only problem with this plan to get my computer fixed with little or no effort on my part is that I live in the Ultimate Gated Community – a US Military Base. You don’t get on to my base without proper ID, DNA samples, references, an on-base sponsor, 120 days notice and a note from your doctor. Which means that unless the computer geeks have their own way on to base, I’m going to have to stop what I’m doing, load up all my kiddoes and head down to the visitor’s center to sign my geek in and hope he has all the proper paperwork. Honestly, I don’t know what all those guys up at Ft Dix were doing, because there aren’t any pizza delivery guys driving around here. You want pizza delivered from off base, you go meet your pizza at the gate.

So anyway, this greatly decreases the Making My Life Easier Factor, which means I did what I do best – procrastinate.

The computer got slower.

In the meantime, I realized it’s time for the annual fun fest known as Taking the Kids to the Dentist. I needed to find a children’s dentist in the area first, of course. And everyday as the computer got slower and slower, I kept threatening to call the geek guys, even if I did have to get up and go get them. *side note- did you know that whacking the CPU doesn’t actually help the computer go faster?* Philip though, is a wise man and told me that I could call the computer geeks after I found a dentist and scheduled appointments. He’s responsible like that. Plus, he also suspected that all we needed was a new memory card. So, a dentist was located and appointments were booked, next step – a computer overhaul!

The very next morning, I open the blinds on our front window to see none other than a computer repair guy’s truck! A computer repair guy that may already have his own base access! I was so excited that I started talking in exclamation points! I wrote down his number, but as Philip was leaving for work, he was able to talk to the guy who seemed to know exactly what was wrong with our computer. Besides the fact that it is a Big Pig. And the best part is- you’re going to love this- he lives right on base!  No signing anyone in, no braving the Beltway.

Our computer went off for a day of R and R and came back a much happier computer. A healthier computer. A Oh-I’ll-be-happy-to-print-out-that-document and open-up-any-website computer!

It’s problem? Four viruses and a spyware. Yes, you read that right, 4 viruses. Yes, we had anti-virus software, but apparently it wasn’t very good. We were using Norton which we paid good money for, but now we’ve been squared away with Avast! I’d really like my money back from Norton – four viruses people! The repair guy said he was surprised our computer even booted up.

So I told you all this just to make the point that sometimes procrastination is a good thing and that when God puts a computer repair man in front of your house, it’s going to take more than a new memory card to get things moving.

I Once Was Lost…

Whee!…but now I’m found! Bip has been reunited with Whee. Thank you for your prayers.

One more request though – now we’re missing his Mickey Crocs. I know they’re in the house. If you don’t mind, please pray that we find them by tomorrow morning. Thanks!

**Update! 5:30 pm: Bip’s crocs have been found.  Seek and ye shall find.

Lost!

st-anthony.jpg

St. Anthony, St. Anthony
Please come down
Something is lost
And can’t be found

 

Yoikes! Bip has lost his favorite stuffed animal, a dolphin named “Whee”. He’s been walking around for the last couple of days saying, “Whee? Whee?”. Could you join me in petitioning good ol’ St. Anthony for his help and intercession? Or for my Protestant buddies, just a quick prayer to the Big Man himself?

“St. Anthony, perfect imitator of Jesus, who received from God the special power of restoring lost things, grant that I may find [name the item] which has been lost. At least restore to me peace and tranquility of mind, the loss of which has afflicted me even more than my material loss. To this favor, I ask another of you: that I may always remain in possession of the true good that is God. Let me rather lose all things than lose God, my supreme good. Let me never suffer the loss of my greatest treasure, eternal life with God. Amen.”

 

 

Dining Room Corner: Buffet Table

Here’s a look at my buffet table before I cleaned it up. Again with the Lots of Stuff That Doesn’t Belong theme.

Buffet Before

Look! There’s even more stuff hiding behind the clock.

Buffet2

Buffet3

This was an easy fix this time. I cleared off the whole buffet table and started over. Everything was dusted before it was put back, lots of stuff got put away. Something I have noticed is that if you have an area that looks cluttered, other people (and you know who you are!) just add to it because they “don’t know where to put things.” Argh! Stop helping already!!

So here is the buffet table the way it looks today:
Buffet After

S-w-e-e-t !

I think it’s time to move on to another room. I’m eyeing the area known as the computer room. It’s really just one end of our living room, but no matter what you call it, it needs help.

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