Monday, March 31, 2008

first signs of spring

first signs of spring, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

Finally, a glimpse of hope!
I was scooping errant leaves out of the pond today, and I came across our good buddy Bullet! We weren't sure he would make it through the winter in our little water hole. Last October, on a cold & rainy afternoon, we came home to find a heron gulping down our fish. He got all but 2. Lousy bird. The fish were sluggish and we weren't home to shoo him away. We hadn't seen Bullet since that day, so this is really good news!

On the other hand, I also have mushrooms growing in the garden. How did that happen? Until this morning, it was covered in snow. I know they like damp soil (which it very much is) but this is ridiculous! No green peeping out anywhere, but I have 'shrooms!

first up on my to-do list

IMG_1134, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

No vacation recap today. I have more pressing matters to address.

Evan is a creature of habit, sometimes frustratingly stubborn in his refusal to change. It's especially evident in his clothing selections. I literally have to tear clothes off his body so that I can wash them. And sweatshirts? Don't get me started. He insists on wearing one every day. He has shirts by the dozens, both short and long sleeved, but without fail he will reach for a hoodie 9 times out of 10.
This particular oft-worn sweatshirt has become his favorite in the last 6 months. No particular reason, except maybe the lack of hood. Hoods don't work well with winter jackets. The wearer looks like a hunchback.
Last Thursday was a whirlwind of activity. After school Evan had a soccer game literally right after school, so we had to hurry to get dressed and on the field in time. Naturally, he was wearing the beloved garment.
Sometime during the last wearing/washing cycle, the zipper tab came off. Usually this is no big deal; just attach something to the pull mechanism and you're good to go. Not this time. He had it zipped all the way to the top, with not a centimeter to spare (another maddening habit), and that sucker would not come undone.
He suffered through gym class, and a warmish mid 50's day, without being able to get it off. We tried and tried to pull it off over his head, but without removing his ears it wasn't happening. I tried spraying WD-40 into the zipper and using pliers to yank it down.Nothing. Now he's beginning to cry that he'll have to wear it to the soccer game and he's going to melt if he gets any hotter and blahblahblah.
So I did the only thing I could do.
I cut the jacket open down the zipper.
Evan was horrified that I defiled his favorite sweatshirt EVER in such a manner. How could I live with myself after causing him so much pain?
Easy. You offer to replace the zipper. Little did I know that he was going to hound me about it.
Friday he was disappointed that I didn't find time to fix it before we left on vacation. Never mind all the packing, vacuuming, snack gathering, dog dropping off that I did. I should have made time to go to the fabric store and buy a zipper, tear out the old one, and replace it. So that he could wear it to Florida, naturally.
Yesterday he asked me if I ever was going to get around to fixing it. Like it's been a year since I cut it off him. Sheesh.
So before I upload any vacation pix, or go to the grocery store, or relax for a minute, I'm headed to JoAnn's to find a 21" dark grey zipper. Wish me luck!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

back home

We got in last night around 3:00 am, so I guess technically we got home this morning. What a long and brutal drive. Kudos to my main man Bart for driving the last 4 hours while I dozed on & off.
So much to do upon returning home- mail to sort thru, groceries to get, laundry to do, unpacking and more unpacking, emptying out the car (which somehow managaged to gather stuff in every nook & cranny), love on the kitties, throw in another load of wash, vacuum up the cat litter all over the laundry room. I need a nap.
Bart & the kids went to get Buddy at his parents house. I stayed behind so that I can work on some of this stuff (see above paragraph), but also because you couldn't pay me to sit in the car for more than 10  minutes today. I have to go get some basic essentials & run to the bank, but otherwise you won't find me in any car.
Putting pants back on is depressing.
So is the lack of green anything. I thought we would be a little farther along into spring by now.
I will post more pix and stuff tomorrow, when I am clear headed and well rested.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

having a grand ol' time

Spring break has been pretty darn good so far! The weather could be a little better, and the kids could be a little less whiny (at night), but then what would I complain about? Exactly.
The hardest thing for me is not having internet access. It drives me crazy. And it drives me crazy that it drives me crazy. Seriously. I keep trying to get into the few wi fi networks in the area, but they are all locked and I am not a hacker. Plus, I don't know how to hack.
Currently I wheedled Bart into bringing me to Border's for a coffee and a blog reading session. Border's doesn't have free wifi. I am paying $6 for the privelege of 60 minutes access. But it is so worth it. I need my blogs. How else can I stay connected with my peeps?
The kids are having a ball swimming and frolicking in the almost-too-cold-for-humans ocean. My dad bought Evan a skim board and he loves to run up and down the beach, chucking it into the waves and hoping to land on it with both feet. He's pretty coordinated, so more times than not he is successfull. Unlike his dad, who tried one time and fell flat on his ass. Yeah, I;m gonna try it real soon.
I can't believe we have to leave so soon. I can't believe it snowed again at home. It's going to be a long 2+ months before the kids can swim again. C'mon spring!
Have a good week out there!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

we are here!

mostly anyway!
This morning we are near Ocala, at Bart's Aunt & Uncle's house. The plan was to visit a bit yesterday and then drive to Lauderdale, but then Georgia intervened.
If you have ever driven to Florida from Michigan, Georgia is your worst nightmare.
We were making great time, the kids were getting along pretty well. No one was too bored. Georgia changed that all. About 50 miles before & after Atlanta, we came to a crawl. No specific reason... there were no accidents or heavy construction projects. (there was some construction, but we didn't even lose any lanes). Just 10 miles an hour for 100 miles, give or take.
It was excrutiating.
We have about 3 hours left. None of us wants to get in the car. :)
But it's sunny & warm. The beach is calling!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

lost again

I wrote a very nice post about my new niece Isabelle Grace, complete with pictures and everything. Blogger not only screwed it up once, but twice. Twice. I don't feel like doing it all over again, so you'll just have to trust me when I say she's adorable.
(actually, I will re-post tomorrow when I'm not so bitter. It's better for everyone).
So I may have neglected to mention that in  48 hours we are packing it in and heading to Florida. Yes, it's true. we are road tripping. The Florida part excites me... It seems like forever since we have gone. The road trip part... well let's just say I'm apprehensive. Any way you look at it, we are going to be in the car for two days minimum. Together. I haven't completely decided if we have lost our minds, but after the relatively short drive to Canada this weekend and the amount of bitching that took place, I would say that we are definitely leaning towards crazy.
So in the effort to have as much fun as possible and not be a negative Nellie, I refuse to believe that it will be anything less than delightful. And if that doesn't work, I will put on my headphones, turn up my iPod, and pretend the three other people sitting within 3  feet of me don't exist.
Hey. It could happen!

Monday, March 17, 2008

only 29 more shopping days

...until I turn 40. How did that happen? When did that happen? As much as I don't want to think about it, a few peoples have asked what I want for my birthday. Here is a few things I thought of.

I have wanted a new lens for some time, so I settled on
this one  and this one too.
I love this etsy shop and all of her cool necklaces

these are divine, and i would wear these in a minute

this tops my list, probably. I bet you don't even need to follow the link.

I think this is super cool.

Also, while I'm dreaming, I'll take:
a pony, my 18 year old body back, a trip to Hawaii, my own yarn store, a big pile of cash to jump into, a hot tub, a housekeeper,a neverending supply of Oberweis cinnamon ice cream, a puppy, a house on a lake, monthly pedicures, and a Mini Cooper.

In reality, I don't need anything. Truly. Maybe a few bucks would be nice.

Friday, March 14, 2008


cast of characters:
my brain-
my stomach-
me-the reluctant middleman
scene: 2:00 a.m. on a Friday. The rest of the household is asleep. I struggle to do the same.

brain:'wake up wake up. I'm bored. Let's do something.'

me: go to sleep. You should be sleeping.

brain: But I slept yesterday. A lot. And the day before. Now I want to do something else.

me: Really, you need to go to sleep now.

brain: But I don't waaaaaaant to. I want to get up and do something. I'm not tired. I'm not gonna sleep and you can't make me. LalalaalalalalalalalaI'mnotlisteninglalalalalalala

stomach: You had better shut off that annoying toddler you call a brain, or I am going to wake up too.

me: Oh no you don't. You've given me nothing but trouble for the last 2.5 days.

stomach: Sorrrrrry! Now I'm hungry.

me: No you're not. Your just rumbling. You haven't liked anything I put in you. You need your rest. Go to sleep.

brain: I am Henry the Eighth I am, Henry the eighth I am, I am...

me: Stop it right this instant.

stomach: How about cookies? You haven't tried any cookies. A cookie would be good.

me: No cookies. Trust me, you won't be happy.

brain: I know where the cookies are.

stomach: Well, let's go get some. If I don't like them, I'll just send them back out.

me:That's what I'm afraid of...

brain: you should buzz Evan before you go to Florida

me:What does that have to do with anything? Go to sleep or there will be hell to pay tomorrow.

brain:You forgot to buy the plug thingy at Target today.

me: I know

stomach: Still hungry here. NO food for two days, people. That was a real growl. You'd better put something in there or else.

brain: I also know where the ice cream is. The good kind.

stomach: Now we're talkin'.

and this is why I am so tired and need frequent naps.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

on the mend

73/366 mar.13, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

...which is a good thing. I think in the last 48 hours I have slept 40, no exaggeration. I might be setting a new world record. It's too much trouble for me to find out.
I went to Target today. I needed to get out of the house & buy dishsoap. Be out among the living. I instantly regretted my choice of outerwear-I was wearing a fleece jacket that made me break out into an immediate sweat. I seriously thought I was going to be sick, in Target. Not a great scenario. Luckily I made it out of the store and drove to school with the windows down.
Before I left the store, some cute pj's followed me home! Tomorrow is pajama day for the kids, so I bought Em a cute pair with monkeys on them, and Ev some sports themed pants. They didn't have a set that he would be caught dead wearing, so I also bought him this tee. I don't know if he'll wear it, but it makes me very happy and that's all that matters. :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

she's here!

My Mom called me this morning to tell me that baby Isabelle has arrived.
As per the norm in our family, I didn't get many details.
I know:
a) she's small
b) she has some blond hair
c) she arrived very quickly. Like 15 minutes quick.
d) she's cool (according to my brother in a message)
I'm hoping to learn more later, like whether she has all ten fingers and toes, and a nose. A nose would be great.
For some reason, I am feeling really crappy right now. I'm having a major cold flash, and am bundled up in layers, my stomach hurts & I've had diahrrea. And of course I have major menstrual flow goin' on. Spectacular!
Off to feed the kids...

Monday, March 10, 2008

rites of spring

We're all sick of winter.
I don't know a single person, that if you asked them would say, "We need just one more good snowfall". It's March 10th and we should be seeing some signs of spring, already. Enough.
I saw my first signs of spring today, in the form of unwelcome visitors.
We get them every year, without fail. Some years it's the big fat carpenter ants invading our space, other times it's the teeny little guys. We have 2 huge maple trees in our yard and maples mean ants. I don't know why exactly, but they do. I should look into the why.
At our old house in Dearborn we would get them so bad, that for weeks I was like a psycho on patrol, exterminating thousands a day. If you come into my house, you are fair game. If I wanted to be crawling in insects, I would live outdoors. 
Once we came home with our baby daughter after having gone somewhere for the evening. We walked in the back doot, flipped on the kitchen light and I literally screamed at the sight of thousand of ants on every surface of the kitchen. I wanted to abandon everything and move right then and there.
I suppose the main reason they bug me so much (no pun intended) is that they make me feel unclean. One or two bugs in the house=persistance of nature. Tons of ants= filthy hovel.
So today, after showering, I spied a slowish moving small ant crawling on the wall of my bedroom. No big deal. Suck it up with the dustbuster (otherwise know as the bug sucker). Doing my thing, getting dressed and lotioned and hair-did.
There's another one. And another one.
Now I'm starting to pay attention.
They have found a little slit in the window where the screens fit in, and are coming out through there. A few at a time, tenatively. In the time it takes to me get fully dressed there are 9 that I can see. I never like to be outnumbered.
I've seen Antz, and the Ant Bully and A Bug's Life. Cute movies about bugs are fun. But that's not gonna stop me from sucking them up. Humanize them all you want.
I have to wonder if they are realizing yet that their friends aren't returning. Pretty soon it's gonna be down to two ants, drawing straws or playing rock/paper/scissors to see who goes next. Stupid animators.

sushi night @ Greg & Tracey's

sushi night @ Greg & Tracey's, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

last night we went to my sister & brother-in-laws house for a homemade
sushi party. We haven't made sushi in a really long time. When Em was little we were on a sushi kick, and then I think we got burned out on it.
I forgot how long it takes to actually get it made. This is probably why we quit making it. Who has time for a baby and a 4 hour dinner?
This was fun because E&E are old enough to help, and they really like sushi. Then again, Evan will eat anything that includes dipping sauces.
It was delicious and fun. I won't wait so long to do it again.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

good riddance

Well, I for one am glad this week is over.
There were some highlights. I got 2 books i really wanted. I started a new sweater & finished 2 other projects. I visited with friends.
But some weeks the bad lingers longer than the good.
It was a bad week for Michigan businesses. La Shish and Cost Plus World Market are closing their doors. We have been eating at La Shish for years; and now that we are no longer in Dearborn our choices for good shwarma have dwindled. Where are we going to eat now? Phooey.
And hands down, Cost Plus is our favorite place for interesting stocking stuffers, ornaments, and various other goodies. Closing their doors in the metro area. Sad sad sad.
My personal 'bad' has been my kids this week. More specifically, Emma. I don't know what has gotten into her, but she has turned into this beast that I no longer recognize. I have spent more time this week crying over her. It's exhausting. I hate the direction of things right now. I pray that this is a phase that she will pass thru, and I will survive it. I really turn inward at these times and struggle to just... be. I hate it. (Ironically, she is currently playing Monopoly with her dad, laughing and sunny and sounding normal. I feel like the beast for not being able to just get over it and move on.)
(thankg God for Monday ) :)

Thursday, March 6, 2008

it's a good day

Today I got two books that I wanted more than anything. Not one, TWO! This, in my opinion, makes for a perfect day.
I also got to have a nice long lunch with Kelley, whom I haven't seen in 4 months! 4 months is a crazy long time, and I have missed her. It was great to catch up and laugh and enjoy each other's company. Just adds to the perfectness of the day :)

beep beep beep

there is a smoke detector beeping in my house right now
only I can't figure out which one.
I thought it was coming from the basement
but the sound keeps moving.
Or else I've just lost it.
That's always a possibility!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

other FO

** not an actual baby. It's my old Cabbage Patch doll modeling for me.

(although I have to say, my niece Olivia wasn't any bigger than the doll.)
The blanket is 25" x25", knit from corner to corner. It's very soft and cozy and hopefully will be well loved by my new niece, who thusfar has been stubborn in coming out.

I knew I wanted to photgraph the blanket some way other than just flat... it doesn't really show  the piece to it's full potential. And I knew when I was cleaning out the closet in my scraproom that this basket would come in handy for, something. Put two + two together and voila!
The bad news, although not wholly unexpected, was that Savannah 'discovered' the basket last night and has been sleeping in it.Like I'm ever going to be able to sneak it away from her now.

And! It's yet another snow day! I know my memory sucks, but we certainly didn't have this many days last year, and I would be willing to bet the year before too. I know we didn't have this much snow. When I was a kid, I think we had maybe 5 snow days my entire school years. We went to school, and we liked it (said in my best crotchety old man voice). Right now the troubled twosome are 'playing cards' in the basement. There is a lot of yelling going on though, and they aren't playing Yahtzee. I'm trying to tune it out. Ohhhhmmmmmm...
Emma had a 5th grade musical scheduled for tonight, so they will have to reschedule it. Goody gumdrops, I get to be treated to another day filled with songs about the colonies and the revolution. And don't forget Yankee Doodle.
Have a beautiful, sun filled Wednesday.

note to self #398

After starting the snowblower again & again because the snow is too heavy, be careful when you let go of the cord. Chances are it will swing around and smack you in the ass, making you yelp and grab your rear in public, and leave a nice bruise to boot.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

2 FO's

La la, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

which would be finished objects for all you non-knitters.
I haven't felt like doing anything lately. Maybe it's the weather. I think I have winter blues. I slept longer today than I've been awake. Pathetic.
I did manage to make this knitted 'babe' for my niece Olivia. She was really fun to make. I can forsee more of these in my future.
I also finished, washed, & blocked the baby blanket. I had put a fuzzy yarn edge on it, and I hated it. Hated. So I ripped that off.
The kids in general are driving me crazy. It wasn't a great weekend. Emma mouthed off at me and ended up grounded to her room for the entire day Sunday. Only to come out for dinner & potty breaks. It was rough but I didn't back down. I also didn't get an apology.
Evan has been super moody as well. They aren't getting enough sleep, and are constantly trying to push each other over the edge. It doesn't take much. It's making me exhausted.
And it's starting to snow. Again.
Dang it.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

it's never boring

when you take one eight year old boy
add a karaoke machine
and fart noises
the end result is non-stop hilarity.
For the eight year old.

I love him to death, but he makes me glad
I don't have a house full of them.