"If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under." - Ronald Reagan

Monday, May 30, 2011

When Thank You just isn't enough

Alternate titles: My Mother-in-law is better than yours!, It's the end of the world as we know it


One of the first questions people ask about our cruise is whether or not we brought the kids. Nope. Kids stayed at home with the Man's parents driving in to keep them in time out watch them. So we could bake ourselves on the boat deck, secure in the knowledge that sandwiches would be properly cut and bedtime rituals followed.

While we were away, Grandma G did something truly amazing. Well, she also cleared out my ruin of a laundry room, packed up all the too-small clothes that I'm too emotionally attached to touch, and reorganized the the toy room. But that's not the best part. Boo came home from an activity where she'd used a roller sweeper to help clean up. Grandma simply handed her the vacuum cleaner and set her to work on the living room carpet.


Now, both of the older kids literally argue over who gets to vacuum. I am documenting this for posterity.

Monday, May 23, 2011

True Colors Re-Mixed




After a slightly lack-luster swap I recently participated in, I need a little boost. How about hosting my own swap? The first time was pretty fun so let's try it again!



The theme is True Colors. Each participant will send me a little information about themselves, the most important of which will be their favorite color. Your partner will put a package together containing items in this color. Now, you don't have to have the every item completely monochromatic. For instance, if my partner loves lavender, I could obviously send lavender-scented items but also a color of nail polish, a pair of silver-tone earrings with lavender beads, and maybe some chocolate that has a lavender-colored label. Look at your partner's blog for ideas. Do they have a dog? Send a pet toy with that color. Does your partner love classic literature? Find her a book that has cover art containing that shade. See? Easy enough.

Now, for the rules. I've participated in several swaps and have learned a little about what works and what doesn't. One thing I definitely need is a set of rules outlining the whole shebang. If you're not going to follow the rules, then please don't sign up. Good? Good.

1. You must have a blog that is at least six months old, on which you have posted at least once a week. If your blog is private, you must be willing to invite your swap partner to view it.
2. Email me (duckduckcow at gmail dot com) with your name,address, blog address, a few details about yourself (number of kids, hobbies, etc.), any allergies or preferences (if you have an irrational fear of personalized stationary or won't use anything cucumber melon-scented, here is your chance to say so), and your favorite color. (That last part is pretty important...don't forget it!)
3. Then blog about this swap! The more participants we have, the more fun it will be for everyone.
4. I will send emails and I will expect a response. You'll get a) confirmation email with your swap number, b) your partner's information, and c) a reminder email just before the shipping date. If I do not get a response from you, I will assume that you've lost interest. You might be dropped from the exchange.
5. You must be willing to put together a package that is worth $20-$30, not including shipping. I would like at least one handmade item, please. Share your talents! And remember value...while some people see "vintage," others see "junk pile."
6. You must mail your package on Friday, June 17th or Saturday, June 18th. No later than that! Please do not sign up if you will be on vacation or too busy. It's not fair to your partner!

Go send me that email! I will close the swap on, Friday, June 3rd. You will receive your partner assignments soon after. (And if you don't hear from me, please contact me again...you know how I can be an airhead sometimes...) Also, if you have any questions, send me an email! More than happy to help out any newcomers.

Link it up, my friends!


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Blazing Minds want to know!

I haven't posted for a bit because all the drafts I've produced seem so serious and somber. I'm taking a cue from Milli Vanilli and blaming it on the rain. So while searching for a little levity, I came across a blog from the UK called Blazing Minds that posts all kinds of memes and blog prompts. Their prompt for today:
Name 6 things that you did more before you discovered social networking.
Okay...

  1. Blogged.
  2. Read blogs.
  3. Hung out with my bloggy buddies. Seriously, I haven't seen most of 'em in ages. I'd rather be chatting over chocolate cake instead of running into them randomly at the grocery store when I'm not wearing any makeup and my hairstyle is questionable.
  4. Wondered what happened to those people in high school...you know you want to know, too! There are the unexpected deaths but also the big jerks that are now good dads, the fat girls turned skinny (and vice versa). 
  5. Writing whatever came to mind. Now, I'm a lot more structured in what I write and how I go about putting it into nouns and verbs and dangling participles. How did that change because of social networking? I've met actual published writers who shared their knowledge. And that has made all the difference.
  6. Cleaned my house. Seems like I spend a lot more time checking in on my cafe and mafia than I should. I ought to be cooking real food and less of it virtually.
What's one thing you did more before social networking?

And I'm hosting another swap starting Monday! Look for the post with information and ways to signup!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Friday Confessions...on a Tuesday

I planned to post this during the Great Bloggession of 2011. I've heard the official downtime was only 14 hours but I haven't been able to get on for several days. And I'm assuming that this is the reason why my readership has tanked...

Anywho...


Photobucket


I confess...

I wasn't actually here just a little bit ago. Sure, I posted and whatnot but...not here.

I confess...

I was on a cruise.

I confess...

It was horrible and I missed you guys so much! I'm so glad to be home.

I confess...

That last part was a lie.

It was actually fantastic. And this time, I remembered my camera charger so I've got lots of pictures to share. In fact, I'm thinking of starting another blog to help others with my, uh, curves in making the best decisions. The working title is "Fat White Chick's Guide To Cruises." What do you think?

And I learned some new things while on board this time. Never knew that cruises could be so friendly toward "friends of Dorothy." And that the Man's inappropriate comments about towel animals tends to make each nightly creation all the more giggle-worthy.

Monday, May 16, 2011

FHE: Nephi is Awesome!

Sorry for the delay in posting...Blogger wasn't letting me get into my blog for the past week.Rather annoying, especially because I've got some pretty big stuff to tell ya! But for now, let's talk about Family Home Evening.

The Boy came home from church last week and between mouthfuls of peanut butter and honey sandwich, he excited told us the story of this really cool guy named Nephi. He was so animated and entertaining that I asked him to teach us about Nephi for the lesson. When they are this wound up about scripture stories, give them an audience!

The Boy's Version:
He began by telling us that Jerusalem would be destroyed so Nephi's dad and his brothers and their mom packed up and went camping in the Wild West (actually the Wilderness, but it was pretty funny). But then they had to go back to get the Golden Plates from Laban because he wasn't reading them. Laban was mean and wouldn't let them have the plates so then they went back to their house -- their house in the town, not their tent -- and got all their gold and cool stuff and brought it back to Laban but then he just took all their stuff and made his friends chase Nephi and his brothers so he could keep their money for himself.

The Boy was so excited by his re-telling that the story came out in a big
rush, complete with horrified expressions after Laban's actions. I really loved listening to his version and plan to make this part of our regular FHE. Got to encourage the thrill of learning the scriptures, right? Another option would be get a felt board and have them use characters and such to re-enact the lesson. There's a great resource for scripture stories here. I used these nearly every week when I taught Primary. (What? You didn't know I wasn't a Primary teacher any more? Yeah, well...that was kinda part of my news that I couldn't ever post, where I didn't believe the counselor and it took some convincing that he was serious...)

The big thing is to let the kids do the talking. Only offer to help when they're stuck or really getting off the storyline (like when Boo once suggested that maybe dinosaurs could have helped the Stripling Warriors, because they lived so long ago).

Treats: The kids helped me make molten chocolate cakes. Easy recipe with lots of small tasks kids can do. But don't have the younger ones separate out the egg yolks...it's not a pretty site.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Nothing Rhymes With Orange

Sometimes I get in these weird moods...where I just have to do something completely silly, like make up rules for a created holiday or go to the midnight showing of a teen movie while eight months pregnant. Just crazy.

The other night, I decided to make buffalo wings for dinner. Don't get all excited - I totally cheated and used the ones from Costco. I pulled a bag of carrots out of the fridge to serve and then reached for a box of gelatin (so the Boy wouldn't completely starve). I picked the orange flavor. Setting all the options on the table, I giggled...then I added a bowl of baby oranges.


The kids loved it and it was almost entirely unintentional.

Now they want me to serve them a blue dinner. Hrmm...blue food. Blueberry pancakes, blue yogurt (easy enough to color the vanilla flavor). Maybe I could soak some pear halves overnight but that is just too much food coloring. Might need to re-read some Percy Jackson books to see what blue foods his mother served him on his birthday.

What suggestions do you have for blue food?

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