Monthly Archives: December 2008

What kind of math are they teaching?

Chickie: When did they not have money? Like what year was it?

Me: The great depression? That was in the early 30’s.

Chickie: Oh, so 8 years before I was born?


Just a little more Christmas music

This is the final performance for my oldest daughter, Chickie.  In the last year she has decided that she does not like singing in front of the church.  I had to bribe her to get up one last time.  The deal was if she would get up, smile and sing… I would let it be the last time. 

Chickie is on the far left, The Boy is on the far right – the one with his hands in his pockets the whole time.


Every year for Christmas we would head to my parents’ house for dinner on Christmas Eve.  The meal always included Norwegian meatballs, lefse and lutefisk (oh, don’t ask).  It was almost always served buffet style.  We’d load up our plates and sit in the living room.  After dinner the kids would handle the clean-up and dishes.  Then we would head to church for the Christmas Eve service.  As a child the anticipation of what would come next would make the church service seem like it was hours too long.  For as long as I can remember we’ve always opened our gifts on Christmas Eve – after church.  My parents’ goal was always that everyone takes turns opening one gift at a time.  Usually we’d get ahead of ourselves and open gifts simutaneously.  Christmas morning brought stockings from Santa – but you had to wait for parents to wake up – or in later years – for the rest of the family to arrive.  Christmas day was filled with visiting friends (or boyfriends) and playing games with the family.

That has been my Christmas experience every year of my life. 

Except this year.

This is the first year that our family is on our own to make our own traditions.  To pick our own meal.  To decide when to open gifts.   How to spend our days.  Wow.  Um…  It’s kind of hard to make up new traditions when all you’ve known is your own family’s traditions.  I have found one tradition that I want to start – a Jesse Tree.  But seeing as how you’re supposed to start it on Dec. 1st and here it is the day before Christmas Eve…. it will have to wait until next year.

How about you?  What are your family Christmas traditions?

The Gift of Gab

Women no longer hold the top position for the gift of gab…. no, it now belongs to 7 year old boys.  They rank at the top of the list.  Or at least mine does.

I never thought my once shy boy would turn out to be such a talker.  Now in all fairness he doesn’t just ramble on about nothing unprompted.  You have to ask him a simple yes or no question.  Then sit back and enjoy the story.  Hopefully you have time to listen to a 20 minute monologue and even after that you may not have your yes or no.

Sometimes I have to stop him and tell him, “Just tell me YES or NO.”  But if I have the time (and the patience) I will let him tell me his long, drawn out answer.  I never know when he’s going to launch into one or I would have a camcorder ready. 

I will attempt to give you an idea of what happens.  I can’t think of an actual situation so I’ll have to adlib but I promise it will be close to the real thing.

“Hey Boy, did you bring home your backpack?”

“Well, I had lunch with Mark today.  He had spaghetti but not like the kind that we have.  Then when we went to recess I forgot my lunchbag so I had to go back and get it because Mrs. M said that’s what we’re supposed to do.  But she wasn’t here today.  We had a sub.  It was Mrs. R again.”

“So…. your backpack?”

“Oh, yeah.  It’s in the closet.”

Sometimes his stories wrap back around and he’ll eventually answer your question but I think that frequently he gets distracted by his own chatter and ends up on another planet.  He’s quite the entertainer.

Done. I am done.

I love my dogs.  I do.  I love how goofy they are, how fun they can be.  Their big floppy faces and puppy dog eyes… 

But seriously.  I am done with them right now.

They get lots of attention.  They have plenty of bones and chew toys.  The kids play with them in the yard.  And yet they continue to find things to chew on and destroy things that they KNOW THEY AREN’T SUPPOSED TO.

Oh everyone expects puppies to chew up a few things but this is getting beyond ridiculous.  More than a pair of shoes have been destroyed and countless stuffed animals.  I can deal with that.  My wall??  Oh yes, more than once.  My floor??  Oh yes, they apparently can chew a hole in the middle of linoleum although I have no idea how they do it.  Oh, and more than once.  Two dog beds.  My COUCH.  And just now…. winter jackets belonging to The Boy and Beans.  The only jackets they own. 

My budget cannot keep up with their destructive behavior.  I understand now why some families have to part with their pets.  If we don’t find a solution soon I might move beyond tempted to “FREE DOGS TO LOVING HOME”.  Wherefore art thou Cesar Millan?

The home stretch

Whew! It’s been a busy couple of weeks but I’m finally on the home stretch. Tonight is the last of the big, planned events. And, hopefully, this one should be fun!! It’s my husband’s work Christmas party. We get to dress up, go to a nice place and actually hang out with adults – no children! Yea!!
Hope you all are preparing your hearts and enjoying time with family and friends in the coming week!

Going Green

You can’t turn on a t.v. or surf the web without seeing ads about “going green”.  It’s been the latest buzz word and all the hip people are doing it.  Unlike other trends this is one fad that I hope sticks around!

I have found that I am very passionate about the products we are using and the food we are eating.  I often wonder about the increase in diseases and cancers… has it only been that recent technology has made reporting cases easier or is it because of what we’re exposed to that has caused the huge increase of these horrible things?  I’m voting that it’s the latter. 

I don’t remember where I heard this but every family will be touched by cancer.  I know several people that have braved the battle and yes, even in my own family have we had to watch it ravage a loved one.  Why?  What are we doing that’s causing this?  We’re told that our products are okay, we can use microwaves, tanning beds, cellphones, and we can eat high fructose corn syrup because it’s “all natural”…  It makes me sick.

The burden isn’t all on the manufacturers, I do have a choice.  But they haven’t made it easy.  If you want to be “green” you’re going to have to pay the price.  Natural cleaners are expensive.  Grass fed beef?  Good luck.  Milk without hormones… pesticide free vegetables… recycled packaging? 

I would love (LOVE!) to move my family to a farm and grow our own food, raise our own meat.  Is it economical?  Sadly, no.  With our budget I am doing the best I can to provide safe commodities for my family.  I think the ideal plan is to find some sponsors (maybe 7th Generation or Method) that will pay us to live on a farm and document (via blog of course 😉  no reality shows for me) how it’s going.

If you’re interested here are a few things that have been informative:

How about you?  Are you concerned about being green??  What kinds of things are you doing to be green?

p.s.  I recently heard about a conference that 7th Generation hosted.  One of the bits of info that was shared… 10 individuals had their blood tested and they found traces of over 200 chemicals in their blood.  The individuals tested?  Newborn babies.  They drew the blood from the umbilical cords.