Outside my window... my new inflatable yard Santa is smiling at the world.
I am thinking... about issues at work.
I am thankful... for antibiotics that treated my pneumonia. That knocked me out for a while, so this blog has been a bit neglected.
From the kitchen... birthday party leftovers.
I am creating... wrapped gifts under the tree soon, I hope.
I amgoing... out for a fancy dinner with friends tonight!
I am reading... I Wish by Elizabeth Langston. I've just barely started it. Since my last SWD post, I've finished The Pact by Jodi Picoult, Whispers from the Past by Elizabeth Langston, and Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline. All three of those were good, but Orphan Train was my favorite.
I am hoping... to be ready for Christmas.
I am hearing... Elise coughing. This is always a tough time of year for her with her asthma.
Around the house... everything is Christmasy and tidy looking since we had to clean up before Addie's birthday party.
One of my favorite things... Diet Cranberry Sierra Mist. As much as I love cranberries, I don't think I ever would have thought to buy this. My mother-in-law bought it though, and now she has gotten me hooked!
A few plans for the rest of the week... circus camp for the kids, lots of jump rope and TKD, Addie's 7th birthday, and our holiday party at work.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... birthday party madness.
Outside my window... it is gloomy, chilly, and rainy... good nap weather.
I am thinking... about laundry that needs to be done.
I am thankful... for heated seats in my car.
From the kitchen... beef enchiladas, chips and queso, and salad.
I am creating... Christmas cards. They are done and ordered.
I amgoing... to work on laundry once I finish this post. Exciting times around here.
I am reading...The Pact by Jodi Picoult. I just started it this morning, but it has already sucked me in. I finished Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews. It is definitely my least favorite Mary Kay Andrews book that I've read so far. It was disappointing. I usually enjoy her books so much.
I am hoping... to finalize Christmas gift lists soon.
I am hearing... a plane overhead. Remember how eerie it was to not hear planes overhead after 9/11? You didn't realize how often you hear them until you didn't hear them at all.
Around the house... I am attempting to find better hiding places for Christmas gifts. The girls have already found their Christmas Eve PJ's.
One of my favorite things... sudoku.
A few plans for the rest of the week... lots of jump rope and Taekwondo, and the school talent show for Elise.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... Wooly Bull getting in on the TKD demonstration.
Yesterday, I was behind a car with not one, but two Piggly Wiggly bumper stickers on the bumper. Who puts a grocery store sticker on their car? Why does a grocery store even have bumper stickers? Why would a grocery store have more than one design for bumper stickers? Who would buy one? Who would buy two? Does Harris-Teeter, Albertson's, Lowe's, or Publix have bumper stickers? These are the questions that now haunt me.
This evening, we had dinner at a cafeteria. Addison was telling us how great her zucchini muffin was. She said, "I pointed to the muffin, and then the lady told me it was zucchini. I thought "ick", but I had already pointed to it, so I thought, 'well, I'll just roll with it.'" Love that... just rolling with the zucchini.
I am not a fan of sleep-overs. I relearn this at least once a month.
I ordered our Christmas cards, and I was sent a proof. My pictures looked fine. My text looked fine. The card itself has stripes though, and it was randomly missing one stripe in the middle of the card. How does this happen? Aren't the stripes part of the card template? I contacted customer service, and they agreed the stripe was mysteriously missing from the proof. They are now sending me a new proof. I'm so puzzled though. How does a background stripe go missing?
Elise tried out for and made "team show" for jump rope. This is exciting news for her, but we now have jump rope a minimum of four days per week instead of three. I wonder if I just leave her at the jump rope gym with a sleeping bag and some food if her school bus could start picking her up and dropping her off there instead.
We ran into some neighbors at the mall this afternoon. They said, "We saw all kinds of craziness at your house this morning! One of your children was outside in her underwear, two of them in their pajamas. The car alarm was going off, and they were all running around, slamming the car doors. It was quite comical." Nice. This is how we impress the neighbors. J.C. walked up a minute later, and I said, "Did you know our child was running around outside in her underwear this morning?" He said, "Yeah, I got in my car to leave for a bike ride, and I saw her in underwear and a bikini top in 40 degree weather. I thought, 'well... nothing I can do about that,' so I just drove off." Clearly, we have completely given up on sane parenting.
Outside my window... my hydrangeas are still blooming. I'm not sure why they are continuing to bloom into November, but it makes me smile.
I am thinking... about signing Addie up for a chess class. She has somehow turned into a bit of a chess junkie. I'm not sure how when none of the rest of us are big chess players. She enjoys it though, and I found a class for her age.
I am thankful... for my crockpot. It is the only way I cook in the winter.
From the kitchen... whole chicken in the crockpot, and then whatever I figure out to go with it.
I am creating... very little these days.
I amgoing... to wake up Elise soon. I don't know how she stands going to school when it is still dark out.
I am reading...Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews. I finished When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead. I loved the setting of the book - childhood in the 70's, but I didn't love the story. I passed it off to Elise. Maybe she will like it better.
I am hoping... to get some things done around the house tomorrow when we are home for Veteran's Day.
I am hearing... total silence. Everyone is still asleep. I'm the early bird this morning.
Around the house... clutter, clutter, and more clutter. It makes me crazy.
One of my favorite things... a pretty sunset.
A few plans for the rest of the week... the usual kid-taxi driving, cookie mom training for me (sigh.), and jump rope team show try-outs for Elise.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... a very happy, proud little one who won a bronze medal in sparring at her first Taekwondo tournament. I wasn't able to witness it, but J.C.'s description of the sparring match was, "I don't think she really understood how points were awarded. There were just arms and legs flying at her, so her arms and legs went flying too." Somehow that turned into a bronze medal, so she was a very happy camper.
This Halloween, we had an Elsa, a minion, and a teenager dressed in black jeans and a black shirt who claimed she was a "vampire hunter". Her mother made her put on a cape, so she at least had some semblance of a costume.
The vampire hunter deserted us for a friend's neighborhood. That's the cool middle school thing to do. Elsa had a great time in the gorgeous dress my mom made.
She trick-or-treated with Batman for a while and then hooked up with several other Elsas and assorted princesses. She was even brave enough to to reach over this not so dead corpse to grab candy.
The adult trick-or-treating was pretty stellar this year. I ended up with a glass of wine, a toasted marshmallow shot of Kahlua, and a Frito pie. Plus, I stole all the girls' Kit Kats. Score.
Then we have the minion. Weeks of planning went into putting together the perfect minion costumes with a friend. Minion socks, a minion jack-o-lantern, figuring out who would be the yellow minion and who would be the purple minion and then deciding they should both be yellow minions, making minion goggles... it seemed to be the grand master plan leading up to a perfect night of minion trick or treating.
Until it wasn't. Nina burst into the house sobbing, completely heartbroken. Apparently her minion partner in crime had left to trick-or-treat in another neighborhood with another friend. With tears streaming down her face, she declared, "I don't want to trick or treat at all!" It ripped my heart out just a bit to see her so upset. She had been looking forward to this night for weeks. I don't know how things fell apart, whether Nina had bigger expectations about being together that night than the friend, or whether the friend got a better offer and ditched her, but at that point, it didn't matter. She was learning that awful lesson that we all learn at some point... friends sometimes let you down, and it hurts. I gave her a hug, wiped the tears off her face, and told her not to let that ruin her night. I convinced her to go find another friend. By the end of the night, she had hooked up with four other girls and had a ball. Thankfully, the night was salvaged. She came home with a big sack of candy and a smile on her face. She still can't really talk about the whole minion ordeal though. It was definitely a night of Halloween heartbreak for one yellow minion and her mom.
Outside my window... it is too cold. Who said winter could come this early?
I am thinking... about logistics of getting kids where they need to be this week.
I am thankful... for my dad being well cared for at respite care while my mom took a much needed vacation to visit her sister, my cousin, and my new little cousins.
From the kitchen... spaghetti, garlic bread, and caesar salad.
I am creating... vacation plans for next year. Any suggestions for a wonderful vacation destination? So far, we're tossing around thoughts of Disney World, San Antonio, Santa Fe, San Diego, or Yellowstone. Have you taken a wonderful family vacation somewhere? I'd love to hear about it!
I amgoing... to go through an entire box of Kleenex blowing my nose tonight... not sure if it allergies or the beginnings of a cold.
I am hoping... that I can find the girls' Girl Scout uniforms. I have lost all three of them. I have torn the house apart several times looking for them with no success. It is very frustrating.
I am hearing... the washing machine washing Elise's jump rope uniform for a performance tomorrow.
Around the house... candy wrappers.
One of my favorite things... Taylor Swift's Shake it Off.
A few plans for the rest of the week... an insanely busy week - 2 doctor appointments, talent show auditions, jump rope team pictures, jump rope practices and performance, jump rope judge training, Girl Scouts, being a mystery reader for the first graders, an early release day from school, and Addie's first Taekwondo tournament.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... a cute picture a friend took at a birthday party over the weekend... two Elsas and a very serious looking Dorothy. Addie is in first grade, and the other two are in kindergarten. It looks like she is a good foot taller though!
Last weekend, I had a glorious child-free weekend with girlfriends at Myrtle Beach. We gabbed, walked, napped, swam, ate, drank, laughed, shopped, and relaxed. It was definitely a different vibe from our family trip to Emerald Isle last month, but both trips were fabulous. The beach is always my happy place. I love this quote from the book "Where'd You Go Bernadette?" (a great beach read, by the way).
"When your eyes are softly focused on the horizon for sustained periods, your brain releases endorphins. It's the same as a runner's high."
~ Maria Semple
I'm thinking these faces have some of those beach horizon endorphins coursing through them.
We did a lot of boogie boarding.
Elise did some jumping.
Grandparents came... my parents for the first part of the week...
And J.C.'s parents for the second half.
This was a very laidback vacation. We didn't play putt-putt, or go to the aquarium, or take a boat ride. We just played in the pool,
buried sisters in the sand,
got lost in a good book,
got illegal lessons in driving a golf cart,
rode bikes behind the golf cart,
went out for seafood,
and some of us may have taken afternoon naps.
Overall, it was a very mellow, relaxing vacation spent with family. In other words, it was just about perfect.
I am thankful... my fabulous, relaxing girls weekend away at the beach this past weekend.
From the kitchen... spaghetti, garlic bread, and caesar salad.
I am creating... nada.
I amgoing... to take a bath when I'm done writing this post.
I am reading...Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain. It took me a little while to get into it, but now I'm really enjoying it.
I am hoping... that Elise gets a new double dutch teammate. One of the girls in her double dutch groups quit the team yesterday.
I am hearing... Modern Family.
Around the house... Halloween anticipation.
One of my favorite things... candy corn.
A few plans for the rest of the week... a second tournament game for Nina, flu shots for all, a jump rope performance, and Taekwondo Halloween party.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... happiest girls on the planet right now. After a 0-10 regular season, these girls just won their first volleyball game tonight in the first round of the post-season tournament.
I am hoping... that Elise gets along well with her 3-person and 4-person double dutch groups for jump rope. They were announced last night, and she is really happy with her groups. She won't find out her pairs partner until later this month.
I am hearing... the washing machine running and Addison watching a video as part of her homework.
Around the house... I am selling stuff. So far today, I've gotten rid of a washer and dryer, and possibly a weight bench and a stroller.
One of my favorite things... crunchy peanut butter on a granny smith apple.
A few plans for the rest of the week... survive the work week, then head to the beach for my no-kids getaway!
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... this little one is very excited about her new sparring gear!