Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Timer

I use the timer on my microwave frequently. Much of the use is for cooking. We also use it for timed tests in homeschooling.

Yesterday, I used it on Matthew. I gave him six minutes to put on his socks and shoes. (This was after 20 minutes of non-cooperation.) He dilly dallied and pretended he couldn't do it. The timer buzzed. He got a swat on the backside. I re-started the timer. After the 'motivational swat', he got both socks and shoes on, correctly, with four and a half minutes to spare.

The timer is my new friend.

There are no arguments. He is out to beat the clock. (If he is TRYING and close to success, no penalty. Sitting with the lower lip out and arms crossed, glaring at me... penalty!)
I give him a lot of praise for succeeding.

Mr C does NOT want me to keep another small child. He is worried about liability. So I guess he will tell the other mechanic "Sorry, No." if he is approached. Oh well... I was just trying to help out financially.
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This is my "baby" brother Roger's birthday. He is 43. Just a few more days until my Mom's birthday.... and she leaves tomorrow for the family reunion held in Broken Bow. So, Happy Birthday to Roger and to Mom! It is One week until my middle child turns 20.

Yep... Ben will be 20!

(Note to my other children: This would be a good time to grab a card and get it mailed off!)
(Note to Mom: see, I didn't say how old you are!)
(Note to readers: My Mom had all her kids when she was really young. She is NOT old).
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Well, due to the absolutely gorgeous weather... we are going outside now. Have a blessed day!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Need a break

I was telling my Mom a few days ago about one of my funniest moments of working at Eagle.

There was one creepy "old" guy (I found out later he is my age, LOL) who would come into the parts room every night and "hang out". (Also known as hiding from his crew chief). He would take a seat in the mechanics queue, and announce he was just taking a break. The guy really gave me the willies, and I would refuse to deal with him, pawning him off on my co-worker Don.

One night, a couple of younger mechanics came in. They were new to Eagle. They told me they needed a break. I said "OK" and went back to what I was doing. They sat down in the queue for several minutes. I went on working.

Then one of them repeated to me, "Ma'am? We need a break."

"That's fine", I said, "G***** comes in here all the time to take a break."

"uh, Ma'am? We need an AIRCRAFT BRAKE."

Oh boy, was my face red!

So who do I run into yesterday morning? The creepy guy. I had gone into the grocery store next door to O's to get some food to eat during the day, as we don't get a formal lunch break on Sunday. He was there. He wanted to chat and catch up on the good old days.

*shudder*

He told me that one of the other mechanics had heard I do some babysitting, and was looking for someone to keep his 7 month old. I told Creepy he could have the other guy call me and we would discuss it. Oh gee, did I fail to give Creepy my number? Darn.

The other mechanic can always get the number from Tom.

If he needs a sitter on the days I am keeping Matthew anyway, I wouldn't mind another kid. Matt needs someone to play with. Since the kid is younger, I would definitely charge more than I do for Matt.
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Mr C found another house online. The big surprise? It is LOCAL. We did a driveby on it last night. It wouldn't be too bad of a place. There is only 1 acre, but it abuts some woods and a creek. And the location is good in that I would still be able to keep Matt, and work at Oreilly's. Plus it should be easy enough to sell IF Mr C ever really decides to go to Ohio.
Do I sound excited about it?
Nope.
I am not EVEN getting my hopes up about buying a place.
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Have a great day, everyone. Don't forget to take a "brake" once in awhile.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Ministry?

You never know when you will minister to someone.
Friday, just before closing at Oreilly's, a fellow came in. I helped him find his part... then offered other items in support of his purchase. I told him it is "Oreilly's equivalent of 'would you like fries with that?'" when he declined other items.
He began talking about how disappointed he was with Sonic. He ordered a banana split. When he got home, there was no banana... and no ice cream. Just whipped cream and toppings. He said he figured someone there needed further instruction on making a banana split.
I told him about Nola's kids... giving directions on making a banana split, and the results. (Mentioned in a post a couple of weeks ago). When I came to the part about Nola giving the child a dish, and explaining it was a representative of God's grace... the man's eyes filled with tears.

He began to tell me that he was going to start going to church with his daughter, because he realized his life had been filled with sin and he wanted to change. It wasn't until I was driving home a few minutes later that I realized I had blown an opportunity to lead someone to the Lord. His heart is ready. Maybe I just gave him a little extra motivation to get to church THIS week.

He said that "even if the religious people turn out to be wrong, and there really is not a God, their lives are still BETTER and more meaningful than those who never believed in God at all."

Friday, September 26, 2008

Overcoming Fears

I woke up this morning- early, since we had to take Becky to the airport- from a dream where I had been doing a lot of things that I am afraid to do when I am awake. I was climbing high ladders, looking down from cliff tops and rooftops. My co- inlaw (Becky's MIL) was also in the dream. We had gone to a beautiful beach, with crystal clean blue water and huge waves. Nola was telling me about how much she loved this place, as she swam through the waves. When I woke up, I realized that Nola hates water in her face as much as I hate climbing ladders. In my dream, we were both overcoming our fears. It was one of those long saga dreams, where I faced many fears I don't even think about having. I woke up feeling 'stronger', if that is the right word, about various things I have to do.
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Becky's flights this morning appear to be going very well. No delays, and she was given seat assignments right up front. That is a rare thing when flying standby, even more rare when you have to change planes. Going from one Podunk to another practically guarantees you will have to change planes at a big airport somewhere. That airport is DFW for her.
She even checked her two bags... which we seldom to never do when flying, so she only had Tyrel and the diaper bag to keep up with... and a stroller to help with that! Yeah, she wound up taking home twice the stuff she came with. (Garage sale finds, her new lamp, candles, some autumn decor, new shoes, an extra pair of baby boots.... we filled up an entire (small) suitcase.) We had a great visit.
Tyrel even warmed up enough to climb voluntarily into Grumpa's lap last night. He walked over to Grumpa's chair, and demonstrated his climbing skills. He climbed right into his lap and bounced on him. He never did decide I was a nice person... but he did allow me to give him kisses when he left. They weren't even kibble kisses!
(The minute the dogs' food is poured, and Becky took her eye from Ty for even a minute... he was snacking on kibble).
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Oh, last night as Becky was nursing Ty a short while after feeding him supper, he kept chewing on her. With his little sharp teeth, Becky would squeak, and tell him not to bite. She finally detached him, and discovered his cheeks were full of broccoli! He was trying to chew his broccoli while nursing! He has eaten pretty well while he was here, trying lots of big people food.
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Yaaaawn. I went back to bed for an hour or so after we returned from the airport. Tom pestered me a couple of time, forgetting I have to work today. Yep, this is the start of my 3 day O'Reilly work week. I am noon to 7pm on Fridays for the next couple of months, and open to close both Saturday and Sunday. The twins are on their lessons, even though Sam isn't feeling well.

Have a wonderful day today!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thursday Evening

Matt and I had a couple of go- rounds today. When he gets in trouble, he wets his pants... which gets him in more trouble. He was doing SO WELL! I sent him to the bathroom... he was dry. He went into the bathroom... and came out one minute later with ALL his clothes wet. He peed all over the bathroom. *sigh* He was made to stand with his nose against the fridge... my form of 'standing in the corner', but I don't have a good corner... for shoving the baby down. The first time, it was just a warning. the second time, he got 'corner' time. It went from three minutes to four when he treated it as a joke.
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Becky is leaving early in the morning. She has to be at the airport by 6:00 am. (Good thing we live so close!) So she is laundering and packing. Ty is feeling neglected... and he does NOT want Granny. Once again, after Matt left for the day, we headed to town. It was after four PM before we headed out the door. The twins BOTH needed new shoes. It hasn't been all that long since we got them the New Balance sneakers, has it? Daniels and Sam's NB were destroyed. Literally looked like rags on their feet. I have been putting them off for more than a week... but I couldn't let it go another day. They both got some hiking sneakers. Dan had fallen for a pair of waterproof boots... but they were mostly plastic, so I vetoed his choice. (I try not to veto the boys choices in clothing, but plastic doesn't last, plus makes their feet stink.... and Dan can have VERY stinky feet. (Like... OMG don't take your shoes off in the house! stinky feet!) $65 worth of shoes this afternoon.
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Then we all went over to WalMart. We had run out of toothpaste, mouthwash, and bandaids... without which our house threatens to grind to a halt. At least for Dan. I dropped off the pictures we have taken over the week, plus a disposable camera with pictures that Dan and Sam took at Becky's this summer. We got fixins and made a chinese food supper: Beef and broccoli, egg drop soup, rice, and pre-made mini-eggrolls.
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Then I ran in at Lowes and got the parts I needed to make my new lamps operational. I did mention I got new lamps last week, didn't I? I found two on clearance at WM for $5 each. I got shades at Lowes... and harps to hold up the shades. On arrival at home, I found that the harps from Lowes do NOT have finials... and cost more than the ones at WM. And one of the lamps was missing the knob to turn it on. So I got two finials and a knob this afternoon. My new lamps are on and so pretty.

Sam and Dan had things to say about my lamps: they are ugly. And Dumb. Lamps should looks like sticks and not be too fancy. And if any wife of Dan's ever wants anything fancy and dumb like lamps, that is just tooo bad.

What a grand influence Mr C is on his boys! I think it was a few months before this blog was started, when we learned that Sam thought that calling a girl a "cow" was complimentary. How will these boys ever cope with 'normal' women? They know all the terms of endearment. "You old large thang", the "Woman, LARGE woman" song, and that anything a female wants to watch on TV is automatically subjected to veto.
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well, Guess I better get some good visits in with Becky and Ty before bed! goodnight!

Still Early

Yesterday was a complete "about face" with Matt from the day before. His Mom picks him up at 2:45. At 2:35, I told him it was time to get his shoes and socks on. I handed him the socks, laid the shoes on either side of him to indicate which foot it went on. He had his socks AND shoes on, correctly, by 2:38. That is 3 minutes. He used the toilet all day.

This morning, he has taken himself potty... the 'next step' in training! Then I handed him his clothes. He got dressed, although his undies and shorts are on backwards. (I think that is a boy thing... all my boys wore their undies backwards, even when they were old enough to tell the difference!) He just brought me his socks and shoes... I told him OK, he can put them on if he wants to. (Unless we plan to go out, shoes and socks are optional during potty training. Matt insists he remove ALL clothing below the belly button before sitting on the potty. So he will be re-dressing several times today.)

I suppose that is all for now. Dan wants to get on and see if he has any comments on his blog yet.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Introduction

Today, Daniel asked me a whole lot of questions about blogging. He finally came out with the reason. He wanted to start his own blog.
Since the internet isn't always a safe and friendly place to turn loose a 12 year old, I let him create a blog as a sub-section of PB4UGO. Dan titled his blog "The Arctic Circle", and you are welcome to read and leave him a comment. The link is on my sidebar.

OOPS!

Becky and I made it to "OOPS!" yesterday after Matt went home.
I had not asked ahead of time for Wanda to leave Matthew's car seat, so I had Tom bring it home when he came in for lunch. He usually has lunch about 11. Yesterday it was 1 pm before he got here, and we didn't have time to go and get back before Wanda gets here at 2:45. So bringing the carseat home was pointless. Oh well. We had had a terrible day yesterday.

Matt was required to put on his own socks and shoes. The socks took 2 hours. Then he peed on the floor. (He had been taken potty twice in the two hours.) That did NOT go over well, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt. Then it was time to put SHOES on. I sit him down with the right shoe on his right side, the left shoe on the left side. He immediatly puts the right shoe on the left foot. I told him it was a nice try, but that shoe goes on the other foot. I removed it, and showed him again, which shoe for which foot. He repeated the right shoe to the left foot. I took it off again, we started over. This time it was 45 minutes before he put the shoe on. We went to the potty and peepeed with one shoe. Took him about 30 seconds to get the second shoe on.
He ran to play. In about 10 minutes, I asked him did he need to potty. He said yes. So we went to the bathroom. He stood looking at me. I told him he was a big boy, he can pull down his drawers. He stood looking at me. I pulled down his drawers.. and he had crapped his pants. I know it was retaliation for making him put on his shoes and socks. I did manage not to beat his butt. But I revoked all his big boy priveleges. He didn't get to turn the light off or on. He didn't get to turn the faucet off or on.

Today is a new day. Starting over with a clean slate.

Becky and I went to "OOPS!" as soon as Matt was picked up. I didn't get as many candles as I usually do. (I exercised some restraint!) I did get Becky the cutest hanging lamp for her bedroom. It is tin, painted with a very feminine rose print. ($11.49). And I got Seneca a graduation gift... a picture frame for Chris' picture. It is the "Mr. Wonderful" frame. When you push a button, the frame says different things women want to hear.

"Of Course I want to spend more quality time with you! I'll just cancel that big night out I had planned with the boys."
"I'm sorry we argued. I knew you were right, I just couldn't admit it."

Plus several more things. I'm thinking this will be a good photo for the frame. It is "very Chris":


Becky and I found a lot of fun stuff to look at. We didn't spend a whole lot of money. Got out before either Daniel or Tyrel got too gripey. It was a fun afternoon, and we still got back before Mr C got home from work.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Visiting CowGranny

Tyrel has really warmed up to us this week. He will now actually smile at both Tom and I, and even talk to us. Since he is only (almost) 14 months old, his talking mostly consists of moo-ing, saying mama, ohhhh! and "ow". He points his finger at us and says "pkwww", already making 'gun' noises.

Ty really enjoys the snacks Granny keeps out. He helps himself to them, until his Mommy catches him crunching one.
"No-No Tyrel, You don't eat the dog food!" , Becky tells him. He dutifully spits the kibble out... and as soon as she isn't looking, he snags another one. MMM-MMM! (Crunch on them long enough and they make GRAVY! Right in your mouth!)

Ty allows Grumpa to hold him now... as long as Grumpa is standing someplace Ty wants a better view of. He still isn't too thrilled with Granny... she isn't as acceptable as Uncle Daniel. Uncle Dan can tote Ty all over the house and yard. Dan says he is working on being the second favorite Uncle, behind Tommy. Chris, my oldest DS and Daddy to all the kids except Ty, says it isn't fair that he isn't Ty's favorite Uncle... Ty is his only chance (so far) to be an Uncle at all.

Becky and I got Ty a second pair of boots yesterday, just like the pair we got him last week, but the next size larger. He loves his boots- and they outgrow clothes so quickly at this age, we figured we ought to get them while they were available. In just the week since the boots were put out at the store, they have almost sold out. We got the last pair of size 5 yesterday.

Becky and I were going to go to the store for diapers yesterday, and to the "OOPS!" candle outlet. But since they were in totally opposite directions, we left "OOPS!" for another day. Maybe Thursday when I don't have Matt. Oh wait! I HAVE Matt this Thursday... the exchange day for not having him the Sunday the guys were in Ohio. Guess we will have to go some afternoon after Matt goes home... or brave taking him with us.

I took Matt to WalMart with me once. JUST once. That was enough. He is accustomed to getting whatever he wants, when he wants it... and shrieking when he doesn't. Since he has very few words that he speaks clearly enough to understand... he mostly just shrieked the entire time I was in the store. He was 2 1/2 at the time... . That was eight or nine months ago, and up until we went to the park last week, I have not taken him anywhere at all since. My errands wait for afternoon or days off. Maybe we will try again- "OOPS!" would be a good place for it.

Ty had missed his nap yesterday when we took him to WalMart. He was NOT happy, and shrieked endlessly, any time we stopped moving, until we were headed to the checkout line. THEN he fell asleep... and slept all the way out to the car. He woke up being put in the car... but at least had his screeching over with. He reminded me of Grumpa in the store... keep moving and get me out of here... you are not moving fast enough! I think he has that male anti-shopping gene.

Dan and Sam are ready to start lessons... so have a great day. I'm off of here.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Another weekend...

I was busy at work- and when I came home, there are Becky and Ty to visit with. (As well as Mr C and the boys.) So no blogging. (Even the one about Mom's present was pre-scheduled to appear, written earlier in the week.)

Chris and Seneca had Gavin's birthday party over the weekend. My mom did him the cutest cake!


(The License plate says "UR2")

The wheels are made of donuts! I sure wish we could have been there.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I love my family

In the few days Becky has been here, we have laughed and laughed... at nothing. Someone will say a word or two... which will remind us both of a joke we have heard. We look at one another and burst into laughter. This leaves those around us wondering WHAT is SO FUNNY?

This morning, Dan said he doesn't know why I am always buying more honey mustard, since we have several jars and *I* am the only one who likes it. I explained that I buy some when we are not home, as yesterday, and I want some for whatever we are eating. The remaining honey mustard comes home... so I have several opened jars in the fridge. I said that an awful lot of my jar was eaten yesterday "by you twins". Dan protested he had not had ANY. Ben interjects : "When Mom says TWINS, she means either one or BOTH of you, like you are interchangeable."

This was the laughter point for Becky and I... "When You've seen JUAN," I said... "You've seen JAMAL!" Becky finished.

Trust me, it was funny.

But left the guys scratching their heads.

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Remember me mentioning the plant roller that Tom got me for our anniversary? My big tree is still out on the porch, so the roller was under the buffet, unused. It has been a terrific toy for Tyrel. It is a sturdy wooden platform on wheels... Which Ty sits on. We have taken turns pushing him around, while he makes car ... excuse me... TRUCK noises and laughs. He loved his cowgranny's spaghetti. I wish I had all my grandkids close enough to play with all the time!
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I am NOT ready to go back to work! Starting tomorrow, I am supposed to work Fridays noon to 7 pm, for the next couple of months. The store is re-setting the displays from summer to winter. Tomorrow, I MIGHT be late. Mr C has a doctors appointment. He says he is feeling better, but he still needs to be checked out for a possible hernia. His appointment is early. Say a prayer for him.
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I guess I better be thinking about our dinner. I plan to make eggrolls, but I have to wait til the kids get back. They all went to the library. Yeah, I copped out of going again this week. I just don't get out unless they make me!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Inspiration


Today has been a beautiful day. The weather is perfect.

Becky and the twins were whining about us staying home and having school when the out of doors is beckoning. I saw on Jenn's "One Thing" blog (link on my sidebar) that she and her kids made a trip to the Tulsa zoo yesterday. The Tulsa Zoo IS the closest one to us, but between admission costs and gas prices... we opted for the Natural Falls State Park. This is just west of Siloam Springs, off Highway 412. It was a real bargain- $3 for the van load. (Of course the van was on empty... $50 for half a tank. Add in lunch and drinks...)



We hiked the circuit... half of which was paved and stroller friendly. The other half had Becky and the boys carrying Tyrel in his stroller like a king on his litter.






Matthew was forced to use his own two legs for the entire day. When we got down to the base of the Falls, I stayed with Ty and Matt while the older kids went to the overlook for me to take their pictures. After the hike, we stayed and played at the playgrounds. Tyrel was NOT delighted with the tube slide. Matthew was.

We had a few funny moments. At one point, Becky was changing Ty's stinky diaper. She had just finished, when a breeze blew up and she inhaled deeply. "I LOVE that smell", Becky says.

"You love the smell of baby poop?"
"NO! Mom!... the cedar and pine smells in the air!"
It was too bad we didn't have a video camera. When we were ready to leave, Matt was refusing to come off the playground equipment. Finally, Ben and I had him trapped between us, his only escape was down a small double slide. He held onto the brace above the slide, swung out and dropped down... right onto the divider between the slides. He rolled on down the slide and hobbled to the van, clutching his 'equipment'.
OW!
We had a very nice field trip. Good Idea, Jenn.

This is Dan in mid-leap from the swings. It took us six trys to capture him in the air!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

At House

Tom and the boys got back last night about 7:40. I was in the driveway when they pulled in, installing the car seat to go get Becky and Ty. So I gave hugs, and left them to unload the car while I went to the airport.

Ty has sure grown! He and Matt are having a good time with one another.

Tom has already got the fallen pear tree trimmed off, and the twins are slaving away at their school work. Unhappily. They have to write directions to instruct a person how to draw a given picture. Then I use their instructions to draw the picture.... and send them back for corrections. I am thinking of using Nola's idea of having them write instructions on how to make a banana split. Then we follow their directions. One of Nola's kids forgot to use a dish. They forgot to peel the banana... She was able to demonstrate the importance of giving good instructions... as well as how God's grace works. (She pre-washed the unpeeled bananas and handed the forgotten dish to the dismayed child holding banana halves in her hand.)

But we won't have the banana split lesson today... we have home made cheesecake for dessert tonite!

The Tyger is having a lot of fun finding toys at grandmoos house. He has liberated an empty sugar canister headed to the trash can. He has used a plastic cup and a piece from a toy to make a rattle. He loves Drover, and has been hugging and wallowing all over the tolerant doggy.

..... oh, before I close today.... I will try to post about my Mom's present, once it actually arrives at her house. :D (Her birthday is October 4th- I am intending she gets the present before she leaves for her family reunion on the 2nd!)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Energy!

While I worked on my Mom's birthday present today, Matthew turned on Ben's keyboard, which was set to "repeat"... and "We Got The Beat". He held on to the top bunk as he jumped on the bottom captains bed... he has been jumping for an hour and a half now. He will be one worn out kid tonight. I finally finished the present! (tee hee... now she will be curious about what she's going to get!)

I have a roast beast in the slow cooker... Becky's flight will arrive this evening, with Tom and the boys driving home about 9 pm. I have the roast on low... and have been waiting to put the veggies in, so they will not overcook. Everyone can eat when they get here.

I got the new 'rose' sheets put on the bed, the kitchen cleaned up, laundry almost caught up. Still haven't finished my library books or gone to the library. (I'm on the SAME book I was reading last Wednesday!) It is a beautiful day here... clear blue sky, light breeze, 67*. I need to sweep the floors and pick up Matt's residual stuff after he goes home. Guess I ought to get started on that stuff!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

yIKE's

For awhile, it looked like Ike was going to head right across us, as did Gustav. But a cold front pushed Ike RAPIDLY across Arkansas last night. Still, we started out with rain and winds from the east, which switched over to the west during the night. The winds howled and shrieked here, and the house moaned and groaned and whimpered. How horrible it must have been for the folks who actually got hit by the hurricane. I am in the very corner of NW Arkansas- far, far inland.

Due to the winds, we no longer have the chinaberry-pear tree. It will now be just a chinaberry tree. The pear tree snapped off about five feet from the ground... missing the house by just under five feet.
Hey, I can reach all the pears now! We got at least two inches of rain, I know. The dog water pans are two inches deep, and were empty last night. They are flowed over now.

The dogs were well behaved yesterday, and stood inside while I dried them off when I got home from work. They didn't like me telling them stay off the beds! But they obeyed, at least until they were dry. I let them out during a lull in the storms- it was lightly raining, and they did their business. Less than an hour later, the winds and rains started again.. as did Jaffa scratching to get out. So I let him out. He charged down the steps, carried by momentum a good six feet into the yard. He stopped, shook his fur, tucked his tail and decided he really didn't need to go out after all. Drover watched him from the doorway- maybe he IS the smart one! (Note to children: This does NOT mean I LIKE them.)

Even with the rain during the day yesterday, it was hot and muggy. Like breathing soup. Like visiting the coast. The cold front has made it a delightful 58* here this morning. Feels warmer due to the humidity- but very autumnish. Unless the weather looks very bad tomorrow, Tom and the boys will head home in the morning. It is going to be a humid 89* there today- I gloat.

Well, time for me to get my green shirt on and settle the TSD on their chains. I have been re-setting the store displays from summer to winter items. That is the fun part of my job. I got to set out FAUNCY windshield wipers yesterday. Bosch's "Revolutionary Totally New Design In Windshield Wipers!" And they will only set a person back about $20 per wiper. While we sold out of several sizes of cheap wiper blades yesterday, we didn't sell a single one from new display.

What a surprise.
Have a great day today, and stay safe, wherever you are!

PS, Laurie, please leave me a note on how you guys fared the storms- you got both Gustav and Ike worse than we did, I think.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Mission Accomplished...

Or at least one of my self appointed tasks. I chained the dogs outside and flea bombed the house. It was overcast when I left, and I was hoping it wouldn't rain. Instead, the sun came out and I had a sauna when I got home- 86*

Add to that my plump, the exertion of opening windows, carrying in groceries, and releasing the exuberant mutts... I had to have another shower. The dogs get to stay inside until I have to leave for work.
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I woke up (got woke up by the ticky clacky toenails of dogs wanting out) in the wee hours this morning. For some reason, as I lay there in the quiet, I realized for the first time that if I had not had the twins, ALL of my kids would be grown up now.
I thought of Tommy having already moved out- like his early determination to escape all confinement... and Ben still here. He always preferred the security zone his crib created when he was a baby. Becky was content "wherever", and entertained herself for hours on end at a very young age. (Sometimes playing with her dolls... sometimes coating herself and her surroundings with ____!!!)

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I thought about how much a child needs limits and boundaries. Some kids turn 'wild' in an effort to get their parents to stand up to them and tell them "NO!".
Many of these wild kids turn into strict parents and responsible adults, sometimes overcompensating their own children for what they themselves lacked growing up.

My DIL Seneca graduates Monday from her M.A. classes. She had perfect attendance, and is valedictorian of her class. Congratulations, Seneca!
She did this while working full time and parenting five kids.

Seneca was a child who grew up wanting a responsible parent. I didn't know her back when she had a face full of piercings and purple hair. She was in her early teens when she found herself about to become a mother- and she turned herself into the mother she always longed for growing up. She was doing a fine job of raising her two daughters when she met my son.

It seems we either subconsciously hold to our childhood personality to some degree ... or we deliberately re-make our adult selves.

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Tom and the boys enjoyed a safe trip. I stayed up late watching TV. I so seldom watch TV, I was surprised. I had intended to go out and get myself something to eat, but ended up without budging from the house all day- heating a can of tomato soup for my supper.
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While at WalMart today, I did find a great deal on a set of bedsheets. $9.00 for a SET of king sheets. I wouldn't have chosen the color I got, if I had been paying the full price. But since I have been looking for a new set of sheets, I decided I could live with pink (they call them 'rose') sheets for that price. I wandered around in the store as long as I could stand, mostly re-stocking our supplies. How can we run out of toothpaste, shampoo, laundry detergent, and toilet cleanser all in the same week? Or was it just because I haven't been shopping myself in the last 6 weeks and these items just never made it to the list when Tom went?
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Well, I'm fixing to go to work. That will be an end to the QUIET, LOL.
I'm always surprised at how I don't feel lonely when I am here by myself. I guess I just don't feel "alone". I hope I never feel that way.
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Thursday, September 11, 2008

The best made plans

So much for my plans for what to do with myself with the guys gone. I have NOT been to the library yet. Or even PREPARED to bug bomb. It is raining, and I don't want to have to deal with wet dogs. I sure cannot leave them inside while I bomb... though it IS a tempting idea. And if they go out, it will be on their chains, since they discovered a nice ripe dead something to roll in last night. (The boys had to bathe them before we let them back in.) No, if it is raining when I have to go to work tomorrow, I will just have to deal with wet dogs. But I'm not doing it voluntarily.

I haven't got started cleaning off my desk... after all, I have all weekend, don't I? (Except for the 22 hours I will be working.) I haven't been to the library, nor even finished the books I have on hand. I have cleaned out the microwave and its stand. And had the best breakfast: Frito Chili Pie.

Instead, I have been absorbed in working on a project- which I will share with you in a couple of weeks, if possible. Oh yeah, and I have also been on here. This could be one of those weeks where I post way more than my fair share. Guess I really ought to make a stab at something useful. The day will be gone before I know it.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

It's (my) FRIDAY!

Ok, so in your world it is Wednesday.

Matt has been so funny today. He keeps telling me "NAP TIME!". I have let him go into Ben's room, since I was in there working on Ben's computer, and lay down on the bottom bunk. He has been singing and dancing to "We've got the Beat!" playing over and over ... and over.... on Ben's keyboard. When I was done on Ben's computer, I made Matt leave the room when I did. He insisted "I NEE NAP!" and folding his hands aside his head as if he were sleeping.

Um. No.

Too much for him to get into in there. He isn't the least bit sleepy anyway. And it is less than an hour before his Mommy gets here. She will need his nap worse later than I do now.

I never made it out to the store yesterday. Ben made a chicken pot pie for supper last night. I'm not sure what to fix tonight. I am forcing myself to go to the store when Matt goes home today. I can decide then. I was sure thinking a pumpkin pie sounds good... but I'm not making one yet. Not until the guys are back to help eat it up!

The boys are pretty much packed for their trip. I have set out some things for Tom's Mom and for his brother. Knowing Mr C, they will be on the road at the "crap of dawn" in the morning. Tom has trouble staying asleep at night, and is almost always up by 4:30 in the morning. I expect they will be on the road by 6:00. My only 'plans' while they are gone are to go to the library, and to bug bomb the house against the rising flea infestation. I keep changing my mind on the timing of those things.

Guess I better get back to the tasks at hand. Hope you have a blessed day.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Cleaned Up

Daniel has been on a cleaning jag today. I have had to have him STOP CLEANING and get back on his school lessons several times.
He cleaned out both of the cars and the van... vacuuming them, using the vinyl conditioning cleaner, spraying the fabric with Febreeze. He cleaned up the bathroom, loaded the dishwasher, wiped down all the counter tops and stove, and swept the kitchen. He said he wanted the house to be all ready for them to leave for Ohio Thursday, and I 'told him he could not pack yet'. (I said he could not pack until AFTER his schoolwork was completed!)

Sam sneaked away from schoolwork a couple of times... I didn't find him doing anything as worthwhile as cleaning... HE was playing video games in Ben's room.

I NEED to go to the local store before their meat sale is over. I should be doing that right now. But here I sit. I just haven't been mustering up the energy lately to get out of the house much. I haven't been to WalMart since sometime in early August... I had thought it was late July, but one of the boys reminded me I HAD gone once early last month. I go to work, come home, go to the library when I must, and if I need groceries, I have shopped at the market next door to Oreilly's. I'm becoming a hermit.

And, I haven't even been reading as much lately. Folks know I pretty much have a book with me any time I go anywhere. In the evenings, I read on the couch while Tom and the boys watch TV. I read very fast- usually about one book per day. (That is reading when I have some time. If I am flying someplace- I take several books along. An average paperback only takes about 2 1/2 hours, and I can finish one before arriving at my destination on most flights.) But lately- I have returned books unread when they are due. Picked up a book and started it, then laid it aside for days. That just isn't like me. I generally finish a book, even if it is boring... hoping it will get better by the end! Twice lately, I have set books aside and crossed the authors off my list- deciding their thinly veiled social activism wasn't worth my while.

Maybe this is depression. I've tried to steer clear of depression this year. Maybe it is just stress taking a toll.

Well, the guys are still a "go" for Ohio Thursday. I am thinking I will bug bomb Friday when I leave for work. When I get home, I can open up the house, then go grab some dinner someplace while it airs. (Still fighting fleas here!). By the time I get the mess from that cleaned up, it will be bedtime... and I work from 8-5 Saturday, 9-5 Sunday. So I really don't need to make any "plans" for the weekend.

Monday, September 8, 2008

And How was YOUR Day?

The twins are working on "singular" and "plural" words.

If 'tooth' is singular and 'teeth' is plural, why isn't one sheep a 'shoop'?

Why do I even think of things like that?

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This week is my brother Robert's birthday, and my grandson Gavin's. Both were born September 11th. That is also the birth date of one of my internet acquaintances- Jenn "Nosewiper", and TWO old friends who both happened to be named Denise Louise. (Not related to one another... and I have lost track of both. One of these women helped me deliver my twins).

This week, my DIL Seneca finishes her classes to become a Medical Assistant.

This week, Tom and the boys are supposed to go to Ohio, if everything works out. (Just for a short visit.)

I sat last night watching two TV programs documenting why the Twin Towers and the Pentagon buildings collapsed structurally- and about the amazing stories of several survivors. I sat and cried again over the whole tragedy of the attacks.

My week doesn't have any plans other than the routine. Watch Matt, homeschool, clean house, and work. Provided the boys DO go to Ohio, I will have a couple of days off schooling. Guess I can try to get a couple of 'projects' done. Like cleaning off 'my' desk... a.k.a laundry room catch all. Maybe even re-re-re-reorganize the laundry room.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Tell Me "It's a guy thing"!

Dan came in this morning saying he needed to give Drover a bath and spray him down with flea spray.

So he did.

Ben was forced to do the honors on Jaffa.

I was doing laundry, and demanded the used towels and white clothes for a bleach load.

In double checking that I had all the whites, I saw that the boys bathtub was still full of dog hair and dead fleas. I told Ben he needed to get in there and clean out their bathtub.

Daniel starts protesting.

"MOM! *I* cleaned out the bathtub just a few days ago!"

Surely I can't mean it needs cleaning again so soon! What's some dog fur and dead fleas on your feet when you shower? Who cares if the bathroom smells like wet dog and testosterone?

Mean Mom pushed the issue.

Then turned her mean attention to the twins room. One whiff of that place had me forcing them to haul out mattresses, bedding, taking down curtains. They are being forced to actually wipe down surfaces before their 10,000,000,000 Lego creations and pieces are returned to display.

I made a run to town for Lysol spray and some fabric freshener. Empty drawers so I can VERIFY the clothes in them are clean. I already have accumulated seven or eight loads of 'found' laundry and bedding.

I ventured to ask Ben when the last time he washed his sheets was.

After due consideration- he admitted it had 'been awhile'. Like, since Tommy moved out.

Gosh I love my days off!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Raining Sideways

It has been raining here for more than 24 hours. From a steady light rain to a total toad strangler in intensity, and back again. ALL of it has come down "sideways"- from the east. Benjamin pointed out that the power line pole is DRY on the west side.

Yep.

DRY!

But on the front porch- the totally covered front porch (the real estate agent has it listed as a "covered deck", LOL) we have a large bucket- inset at least 3 feet from the overhang- which has four inches of water in it. RAINWATER... it was empty yesterday. I have no idea how much it would contain if it were out IN the rain.

My bedroom window has been open all this time. It faces west, and I don't have so much as a spray on the screen. The front porch windows- six feet from the overhang- have had water blowing in them.

This is Hurricane Gustav passing directly over us... and we are hundreds of miles inland. As the storm has travelled, its path has gone from missing us completely, to being on the outskirts expecting 3 to 6 inches of rain, to being in the red zone with up to 12 inches of rain. Our house is on high ground- no worries about flooding.

And the west side of the poles are dry.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Poor Old Al


I noticed a week or so ago that Al had "something" plastering her fur against her side. I commanded suggested Benjamin to give her a bath.

He did.

Tom pointed out to me this morning- Al has a LARGE bald spot on her side. I had totally forgotten the oily substance Ben has washed off of her. I asked Ben if he has noticed the bald spot. He reminded me that it was where she had had oil on her fur.

Poor old kitty is getting more decrepit day by day. More clumsy and .... elderly. The twins mock her clumsiness. Not the spry kitty she once was. I dreamed last night that she was infested with horrible worms, eating her from the inside out. In my dream, I was at my grandparents house (where my Mom currently lives). Becky was holding Al, when she (Al)LITERALLY turned inside out.. Becky screamed for help, as Al's face was the only part of her that remained "outside". I ran to help Becky turn Al "right side out". The kitty inflated like a cartoon character balloon, then died. (I had to shoot her ballooning form)

In real life, the poor cat is still alive. She spends the warm summer days sunning on the front porch. On the rare occasions she comes inside, she curls up in a drawer or a basket of clothes. I'm afraid she is not going to make it through the winter. We have had Al for more than 16 years. She is part of the family.

Politics- my own Ranting

I usually don't have much, if anything to say about politics. Around our house, Mr C expresses plenty of political opinion. He says what he wants to say, and he can say it louder than anything you have to say. (Loudest means right! ) If I have an opinion on a matter, he will tell me what it is. (I have teased him about that.)

Last night, he and the twins were discussing caliber and gauge. He was explaining that the higher of gauge a shot is (for a shotgun), the smaller the shot. (20 gauge is smaller shot than 10 gauge.) Conversely, the higher caliber a shot is, the larger it is. (A .45 caliber is larger than a .22 )
While trying to explain how these two measurements came about- Mr C began to talk loudly. Then louder and louder- as I tried to ask questions. I thought I had reasoned out gauge. But I hadn't. So the 'lesson' grew in decibels. If you don't grasp an explanation right away- of course you will get it if it is repeated louder.

(The caliber is a measurement of size in millimeters, while gauge is a measurement more of how size and weight relate. You can divide one pound of lead into 20 pieces and have 20 gauge shot, or into 8 pieces for 8 gauge shot.)

Anyway, due to the "loud factor", I usually just keep my mouth shut on political matters. One is not allowed to disagree peacefully with Mr C.
Not that the opinion I am "fixing to" express is one we disagree about. ("Fixing To" is a southern term). It is MY very own opinion that hasn't even been trotted past Mr C., so he hasn't told me what I think about it. He may even agree.

In the narrow circles I travel around the internet, I have been reading about Sarah Palin and what a controversial choice she is for V.P.
Some of these opinions I have read say that a woman does not belong in a political office, much less the second highest office in the country. McCain is old. What if he dies and she steps in as President? I was against Hillary as president as much because she is a woman as because of her stance on issues. We are at war with countries who have no respect for women, and would not deal well with a woman as the leader of our country.

However, I find myself believing Sarah Palin is an excellent choice as V.P.
The office of V.P. has many duties, yet all of these duties are to help support the President as he runs the country. A political helpmeet. As such, a woman is an excellent choice. So what if something happened to McCain and Sarah Palin was made president?

Sarah Palin would step up to the plate and do the job. Just as women have done throughout all of history.
My great-grandmother raised six children after her husband passed away, in an era when women did NOT work outside the home. There was no "welfare net" to help her. She took in laundry, she baked, she cleaned houses for the well to do. She stepped up to the plate and did the job.

I believe that Sarah Palin would be accepted and respected as PRESIDENT on the merit of stepping up to the task if it were necessary. Accepted in the light of carrying on the job that was begun by another. Then it would be up to her to maintain the respect commanded of the office.

In my small circles, and on the radio stations Mr C listens to, There have been moans and wails and criticism for Palin's daughter being pregnant. When I first heard of the pregnancy, I thought "Oh No. Sarah Palin has so much to deal with right now- she didn't need a surprise like this to add to her worries."
THEN I learned that the daughter is five months along, and the family was not suddenly surprised with the news after the candidacy was announced.They have had time to adjust to the news of the daughter being pregnant. It has already become an accepted fact of life for them.

Still, as news to the general populace of the United States, people all voice their opinion on the matter. The girl was suddenly thrust into the larger arena. She was no longer the Governor's daughter "in trouble", but the daughter of the candidate for vice president of the United States. Her name is splashed across national news. There is "TALK". And speculation. Critcism of her mother's parenting abilities. (If her Mom had been HOME taking care of the kids, this would never have happened!, the critics imply.)

People ask why Sarah Palin didn't disclose the daughter's pregnancy as she introduced her family the day she was announced as candidate. The People Were Going To Find Out, the critics say, as if this was something deliberately hidden.
I happened to have noticed the day Sarah Palin introduced her family to the nation- she didn't hold up her baby son and say "This is my Down's Syndrome Baby". Was she hiding THAT? No. She just accepted him for who he is- no play for attention at his expense. This is the reason she didn't announce her daughter was "unwed and pregnant" on the stage in front of millions of people.

The announcement of Sarah Palin as running mate for McCain was the focus of that day. Her abilities, accomplishments, and the people standing with her were put forth. I'm sure the family was braced for the onslaught of publicity to follow. Even more than the fishbowl of State Governor, the family is exposed to media scrutiny and mudslinging.

I am just amazed at how much condemnation this girl is facing. I am going to say a name I never expected to write on my blog:

Jamie Lynn Spears.

That pregnant unwed teen continued to do CHILDREN'S TV.
Sarah Palin's daughter has not exhibited the "in your face" attitude. The family has accepted that this unplanned life has joined their family. It was not broadcast. Whose business was it before now? Other than as mud to sling, whose business is it still?

The pregnancy is old news to the Palins. They could not and would not have "kept it secret". It will have NO EFFECT on Palin's ability to hold the office.

Turn off the spotlight and leave the girl alone.

I also hear a lot of criticism about how can Palin raise children AND possibly run the country. "Raising Children is a full time job".
Hmmm. Guess Daddy Palin is going to be out of the picture.

People- these kids have TWO parents.
Daddy can drive the kids to hockey practice and take baby to physical therapy just as easily as MOMMY can. Parenting is NOT the exclusive role of the MOTHER.

I know several women with children who are LOUSY mothers. Being female doesn't automatically mean you are capable of raising kids.

I know men who have stepped up to the plate of child rearing, while holding down a full time job, and not having ANY outside help. Judging a person against a traditionally gender specific role is..... just wrong. (YOU can't raise good kids, you are a MAN. You can't be V.P., you have kids to raise!)

The Palin's can afford help. Being Vice President- or even PRESIDENT- does not occupy every minute of every day and preclude having time with one's family. They may have less family time together than other families, but they will have SOME.
If they are willing to sacrifice their private lives for the good of our country- there is no reason that Sarah Palin would NOT be a good V.P.

Monday, September 1, 2008

September

This has always been one of my favorite months of the year. The weather starts to cool off, school starts, and hunting season begins. With the cooler weather, we begin to use the oven more. I can bake bread and cookies, roast veggies and meats.

This is the month that two of my brothers and one of my grandbabies were born. Except for dealing with ragweed, Fall is my favorite time of year.



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My work at Oreilly's went well. I like being able to help people, no matter what type job I am in. Yesterday, a family trying to get home to Nebraska came in needing a part to fix their vehicle. It was a travel trailer. We have a small rural store, which did NOT have the part. All our supply chain was shut down for the holiday. I found their part in a store just across the state line in Missouri. (We are less than 20 miles from the state lines of both Oklahoma and Missouri). The people were sure they could make it that far, so we did help them as best we could to get back on the road.

This was one of those weekends where I just felt totally 'used up' by the time I got home Sunday evening.

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Matthew's parents have the holiday off, so I am off today as well. Dan and Sam asked if they could play Monopoly as part of their schoolwork today. They listed the many ways that Monopoly is educational. It didn't take much arm twisting for me to agree to let them play! Now their game has dissolved: first into bickering, and then into a "hurricane". They took my turkey baster from the drawer and made "hurricane force winds" blow their houses, hotels and game markers across the table.

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The pears on our chinaberry tree are ripe. I think we may try to can some today. Are you wondering about how a chinaberry tree produces pears? We did too.

Then we discovered that two trees are intertwined so closely that they appear to be one tree. Their trunks actually twist around one another. This is the best pear crop we have seen in the three years we have been in this house.



Three years of Not Unpacking.



Maybe I should use my unexpected day off to unpack stuff. Hang pictures, things like that. (Or maybe I'll take a nap.)