Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye, 2009

This is the last day of the year. It has been a year full of hope, and of disappointment. A year of joy, and anguish.

Some things have remained the same... Tom and I, and Ben, are all still at our same jobs, living in the same house. I tried and failed at having a garden. The twins are still homeschooling, and blooming into fine young men.

Much of the anguish and sorrow of the year never made it into my blog posts... which are mainly a way of keeping in touch with my family, and the family all knew what was happening without setting it out here. The joys, I always feel free in sharing with the world!

I got two new granddaughters this year, both of them counted among the joys of the year.

From the disappointments and anguish, I hope that I have both learned, and been able to demonstrate, the essence of a true, loving family. At times, I know I met hurt with anger... but I strove to overcome the anger so the hurts could begin to heal.

My family has always had a very strange sense of humor. Some say there is 'inappropriate laughter'... but for us, laughter is healing... and we laugh when maybe we should cry instead.

(When Tom's nephew passed away, 9 years ago in January, the twins were 4 years old. We had traveled to Ohio for his funeral. The "viewing" was the night before, and we were at the funeral home for hours. The next day, we headed back to the funeral home, a 100 mile trip. Sam remarked that he thought we had done the funeral the night before. Trying to explain things to a 4 year old, I told him that today, we were going to have to bury his cousin. Sam asked if maybe we should be taking shovels along, then, and not having to be so dressed up?

I'm sorry, we all laughed.)

So this year has been filled with laughter. Even when we had tears.

This is a year that has been filled with 'starting over' for much of my family. What we all really wanted was a rewind button... a "do-over" button... that would take us back in time. That being impossible, we have had to settle for starting over again in many ways.

I am looking forward to 2010... a new beginning.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Some days, age shows...

When Daniel and I went to the library Monday, he suddenly exclaims, "Look at that vehicle! That has to be the weirdest looking thing I've ever seen!"

I am looking everywhere for something unusual. "Over THERE, Mom, don't you see it? ... it kind of looks like a cross between a flattened mini van and a hearse!"

I see the vehicle. It is a station wagon.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Start of a new week

Yesterday was Mr C's birthday. I worked all day. He was home for the delivery of the washing machine. He washed a load... I was too tired to mess with it. So I am on my second load this morning. It smells... like oil burning. I trust it is just the motor lubricant from the manufacturing, and will eventually stop stinking.
Neither of Tom's birthday presents arrived Saturday. Using online tracking... it appears they will not arrive today either. Guess he will be calling the washing machine his birthday present. The last one was an anniversary present: we had the washer AND the stove go out within days of one another, so the appliances were our 'gifts' to one another. The stove was left behind when we moved from Central High. He had a cherry cheater pie... dumped canned cherry pie filling into a granola crust and called it done.

The boys want/ need to go to the library today. I have to deposit my check, and I need to wash the road salt/ grime off the car if the car wash is open. It IS supposed to get up to 30 or so today. It hasn't been above 25 since I got home Friday. The roads are mostly cleared off, but the ground is still snow covered.

As soon as the boys finish their math, we will head off to town. Hope you all have a great day!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Gotta love my kids

When I arrived home yesterday, I discovered these guys in my fridge:
They are just regular eggs, not even hard boiled. (Ben was bored... each egg is hoping he won't be chosen to be cracked next!)

On the way home,in the snow, we crossed a river. The snow is the height of the guardrails.




The "dogs" did not fix my washing machine... so for Tom's birthday, I got a new washer. Not the one I wanted. But one that "will do". It is a "Roper", as cheap as they come. And with free delivery, set up; and pick up of the old machine. Lowes is delivering tomorrow.

Tomorrow is Mr C's birthday. He wanted a cherry pie. I got a can of cheater cherry pie filling. Maybe I will remember to get ice cream to top it with. I was sent home early today, lack of customers. Tomorrow is another "ladies' day" at our O'Reilly's, with Vanessa and I running the show all day. Tom's birthday presents failed to arrive on time... a new "glance" (what he calls a watch... it ought to be a glance because you don't WATCH it, you glance at it when you want to know what time it is.) and a set of Marx Brother's DVD's. He has the same movies on tape, recorded off the TV, but they are getting too snowy to watch.

Speaking of snow... our roads are fairly clear, but getting Ben's truck out this afternoon was sure a challenge. I finally grabbed the bag of kitty litter left over from Al and we used it for traction. (We took Ben's truck, figuring to bring a washing machine home. But with free delivery AND haul off, we didn't need it.)

I had more pictures to add to this, but the blogger photo is refusing to co-operate. Oh well. I will save them for another post.
Have a blessed day.

Friday, December 25, 2009

home again, home again, jiggity jig

I went to East Texas to have a "family dinner" with my parents, and their spouses, yesterday. Two of my brothers and two of my children got to be there as well.
A winter storm swept yesterday evening. It gave many a "white Christmas". For me, a driving challenge. The twins and I hit the remnants of the storm 30 miles south of McAlester, OK. From there, we were lucky to hit 50 MPH. McAlester is more than 100 miles from my house.

We made it safely home. I have tense neck muscles... or maybe swollen lymph glands. Or both. At any rate, both boys complained about the amount of Advil I was taking. (1 every 2 hours). I was happy to stand in the steaming shower tonight. I am happy to report my Adult Beverage consumption is down... only 4 nights of the last 9. I needed it tonight. Shut up.

Tomorrow is 8-5, Sunday is 9-4. I need to go in to work Tuesday to reset the sales. Yawn. Guess when my hair dries... or maybe even sooner.. I am headed off to bed.
Hope everyone had a blessed day, even if it wasn't truly the anniversary of the birth if the Christ.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Today....

Today. I have to start today by filling in yesterday. Yesterday I went to the doc for the follow up visit regarding the concussion. Doc says I'm better.
On my way home, I stopped by the bank to cash my babysitting check, in anticipation of the trip to Dad's house. (Which would involve Tomorrow, but I'm still working on Yesterday so I can get to Today. You did follow that, didn't you?) The bank is in the same parking lot as O'Reilly's... and I saw my boss and a couple of my co-workers standing outside admiring a car. (They are guys. They notice cars. They admire them. Kind of like girls notice babies and guys don't? Only in reverse.)

Anyway, I haven't actually seen the boss man since bonking my bean, so I drove on over. We chatted for a few minutes, and he asked me about my schedule for this week. I told him I was scheduled for Tuesday. He said I should just take the day off and rest, since I had the long drive ahead of me Wednesday. So... I don't have to work today! Which is just as well, because I have a lot of work to do today.

One thing I get to do is go to the LAUNDROMAT! Won't that be ever so fun?
My washing machine went from making grindy noises over the last few weeks to making a positively alarming and scary racket yesterday. It still works.... but is almost deafening in its protests. I was sure it was time to replace the machine. Tom looked at it and was going to disassemble it. I got online and had a really quick diagnosis. The "dogs" are worn out. The "dogs" (really, that is the name of the part!) keep the agitator from spinning backwards. Replacing them ($7.50 plus $5.00 postage) involves removing ONE bolt... from the top of the machine, even.

Of course, Mr C didn't think this could possibly be the problem. I tossed a few clothes in for a "demo" while he called his brother, the handyman. They had pretty well decided the problem was in the motor, when the spin cycle came and you could hear the screaming dogs- and the agitator catching on the clothes and banging backwards. Mr C decided I just might be right in the diagnosis.

A simple, cheap fix. I could probably have drove to Fayetteville or someplace and had the parts TODAY. Instead, I ordered them online from the guy whose online repair guide has saved my machine more than once. He is in PA, and probably buried in snow... so I don't look for the package before Saturday, at the earliest.

And if the problem isn't fixed, maybe the guys are right after all.... and I need a new machine. But for $12.50, I figure we have to TRY to fix it.

Meanwhile, Mt. Washmore hasn't stopped reaching new heights. With me planning to be gone a few days... I have to tackle laundry today. Hence, the laundromat.

The floors need to be swept and mopped, and we still have to equalize the air pressure in the tires. Dan checked them for me yesterday: 32, 30, 30, and 28. You should of seen the look of horror I got when I suggested instead of dragging the air compressor out to the car, we just let air out until all the tires were at 28.
(Hey I was just kidding!)

Dan cleaned out and vaccuumed the car. He's good like that. My car is generally fairly clean anyway. I don't leave trash in it when I get out.... unless it is when I get out and stagger inside after a long trip. Anyway... today is laundry, house cleaning, and trip prep. Guess I best get with the program!
Have a blessed day!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Made it through the weekend!

Did I mention that while I was at the doc's office Friday, I actually had a fever? I assumed it was a side effect of concussing. I was feeling pretty peaked Saturday and mentioned the fever seemed to be up. Two co- workers and a customer took giant steps back from me, and said fever is NOT a side effect of concussion. I was in fact, sick, to add insult to injury. The co- workers decided I should go home. I didn't argue.

At least not til I got home. Seems like I was so crabby Mr C thought I should go right to bed. Then I argued. But not long. I was "curdled" up under the covers before 5:00 pm. I stayed pretty much right there until time for work Sunday.

It was the Tammy and Vanessa show Sunday. We were the only two on duty. It is pretty peeving to have a customer call, then start down the list of guys: "Is Jeff there?" No, he works Mon.-Fri." "Let me have Tim then" "Tim took the weekend off" "How about Dave?".....
and so on until they figure out they HAVE to talk to a girl. "Well maybe you can help me" (said with a deep sigh and obvious regret in the voice.) Then they ask a simple question that any newby can answer from their first day on the job. Anyway, the girls muddled through the day without wrecking the store completely. (Vanessa is the only certified mechanic in the store, even when the guys ARE there).

I was feeling quite a bit better. Not as much better as I felt after taking a couple of ibuprofen, though. I could sure tell when they wore off. I'm still not quite up to speed. I had fully intended to go see Connor and Alana in their "Drama" at church last night. I got off work and headed home, and didn't remember it until it was almost over. Probably just as well I didn't go spread germs around.

I have a follow-up doctor's appointment this morning at 8:30. Then we will be getting this place ready so that Dan and Sam and I can go to my Dad's Wednesday and Thursday. Tom and Benny will be home with the TSD. I work a full shift tomorrow, and we head out early Weds., so this may be my last blog until next week... unless I happen into some computer time!

Have a blessed day and a wonderful week!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

safe sports?

I took Daniel and Sam ice skating Thursday. We went to the noon session, and Sam taunted me into trying again to skate. I made it around the rink 3 times... almost. By 12:10 I was being helped up by the only other patron on the ice... an elderly woman appearing to be in her 80's. But one who could actually SKATE.

I hit my head really hard. Really, really hard. I took off my skates and left the boys to finish their session. Up the stairs of the rink to the main floor of the Jones Center. I was then lost. I had no idea where I was or how to get back to the car. I thought I may have taken the wrong exit. So I went back in the doors marked Ice Arena. There were the stairs I had come up, the same stairs, the only stairs. Back out through the doors... and into the strange place I didn't know. I decided to follow along the way I thought was right... and eventually found the parking lot.

That freaked me out pretty bad, so I called Tom at work. By then, I had a tennis ball knot on my head. He answered and I burst into tears. He agreed to call me every 10 or 15 minutes as I waited in the car for the twins. I was blinded by a headache... so after the second time he called, I agreed he should come get me. He and Ben went back later and retrieved the other car.

By the time I got home, I had a baseball sized knot, rapidly heading to softball sized. A blazing headache. I laid down, but there was no sleeping. No one can sleep through a headache like that!

About midnight, some 12 hours after the fall, the swelling was starting to go down and 'squishiness' set in. I took an ibuprofen at that point, and laid down. Finally got enough relief to sleep. I had work at noon Friday. After a couple of hours, I agreed I better see a doctor, I sure wasn't hitting on all cylinders. My speech was slurred and stuttering. I couldn't hold on to a customer's question long enough to give them an answer. I couldn't for the life of me read the simple work orders I had been left. While the headache was not as bad as the day before, it was still there. I called Tom (from my job) and he called and made a Dr appointment. I was the last patient of the day- and it was a quarter to six before I got out of there. Doc agreed that since I had done 24 hours, we could "wait and see" with close monitoring, whether I needed a CTI scan. He gave Tom his home phone and his pager number. Said call if he needed to meet us at the ER.

But I woke this morning with my head feeling much less melon- like. My speech and co-ordination is nearly as good as new. (I never said it was great to begin with!)
I have continued to feel really poorly all day. I assumed the 100* fever detected at the Dr office was a side effect of the concussion. Nope. Fever is not a side effect, I was told today. So gee.. maybe I am SICK as well as concussed. So my co-workers decided they can handle the store without me. It is freezing out, and a chance of snow... very few folks are working on their cars! I got to come home early.

I am ready for bed... and it is only 4:30pm.

Becky suggested maybe I take up knitting instead of any physical sport... but decided maybe NOT knitting, as it involves pointy sticks. Think I'll stick to reading, as soon as my brain can handle reading.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Bad Mommy Blogger

What kind of mommy forgets to wish her very own darling daughter a very happy birthday on said daughter's very own birthday?

I wrote my blog early this morning and never even once thought about it being 24 years since I gave birth to my onliest daughter.

I have to be awake a good while before any date recognition stirs in my beany brain.

So, Happy birthday to the prettiest daughter I ever had!
Check out her picture at Becky's Blog

Ch-ch-ch- changes....

There are all sorts of changes. Diaper changes, seasonal changes, changes of mind, heart, plans.

And schedules. Once again, my work schedule has changed for this week. To this, I say HOORAY! Instead of every afternoon, plus the regular Friday- Sunday, I had lasterday afternoon, and then... my regular Fri-Sunday!
Next week, I pick up an all-day Tuesday. (12-7 pm). That makes up for missing Friday- when the store is closed. I will have Saturday, and Sunday.

After the first of the year, I will have a radical change... maybe. Boss Man is looking for permission to create a new position: Tue-Fri 4:00 am - 9am, +/- . I would check in the pallet(s) of freight, put it away, process returns, and do any planogram changes. I go home each day when I finish, which would depend on the amount of freight, returns and whether or not I had a planogram. One person who does freight, without the distractions of telephone and customer service, would be a big boon to everyone. I would have to have Dan or Sam "watch" Matthew from the time he arrived, until I got home on the one or two days a week that overlap. He arrives asleep, and usually sleeps until after 9; and on occasion has been known to sleep until 11:00am. So there wouldn't be a lot of actual 'work' involved there.

And whether or not the new slot gains approval... I will be off on Sundays, by mutual agreement. I would work Thursday afternoons instead of Sunday, and continue with Fri & Sat as I have now.

****************
Ok, that was boring. But it is my blog and these changes affect me... and sometimes other people. So you get to hear it.

*************
This has been a year of changes for us. Vast upheavals in our lives, the lives of our family members. Many of the upheavals were unexpected and unwelcomed. God shook us up and set us down and pointed lives in a new direction. We had dark secrets brought into the light, and have dealt with the aftermath.
Some of our changes this year were expected, and welcomed with open arms. Two new babies joined the family. Babies change the dynamics of a family. A new person in the mix. Each one is unique, and adds to the whole.

All of the upheavals have changed the landscape of the family as surely as an earthquake changes the physical landscape of the area it strikes.
*****************
The new year is coming. I wonder what changes it is going to brink in its wake?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

New day!

We have already been busy this morning. I got some cheater slice and bake sugar cookies, which Daniel and Sam have baked. They are cooling off now. The cookies, that is, not Dan and Sam. Matthew JUST woke up, after I began typing. He is having a bowl of cereal. Once the cookies are cooled, I will frost them (or a designee cookie froster). Then I will let Matthew 'decorate' them with sprinkles. He can even take them home with him.

I remember decorating sugar cookies with my Mom and brothers. We made "santas" with raisin eyes and coconut beards, and a marshmallow tassle for his cap. I don't remember Mom yelling or getting exasperated with us. I will TRY to be patient with Matthew.

My own kids and I did some sugar cookie baking a few times. I'm sure it was so sporadic that I missed 'prime time' baking with some of them. All of the kids are pretty good cooks and bakers.
I have had several requests to put together a "Mom's Recipe Book", and Ben actually salvaged what I had already put together from the lightening fried old computer. So maybe I should put some good effort into getting that done... one of these days. I am (belatedly) taking pictures of today's cookie mess decorating fiasco fun.
I do want some pictures of our meals for the family cookbook.

Matt finished his cereal, and told me: "Me Tammy, I tee oh hunwee. "
"Do you want another bowl of cereal?"
"No, I no wan tee wee oh"
He is looking pointedly and longingly at the cookies cooling on the counter.
"Well, if you are still hungry, I will make you more cereal. You are NOT getting cookies for breakfast."
"Why?"
"Because I am using those cookies for something else, later."
"Why?"

At this point, I give Matt "The Look". He wanders off to play, completely forgetting he is "still hungry".

Five more hours until I go to O'Reilly's.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

OFF!

After 9 days straight, I am off... today and tomorrow. From O'Reilly's, at least. I do have Matthew. I will have Matthew AND O's Tues and Wed., then just O's Thurs-Sunday. Raking in some hours.

Yesterday, my oldest DS turned 30! This has been a year of milestone birthdays. Dan and Sam, my "babies" are 13. My middle kid, Ben, turned 21. (My mommy can look forward to next year, when her oldest child turns 50!)

I woke up shortly after midnight last night, and tossed and turned a couple of hours before resorting to NyQuil to fall back to sleep. That left me groggy this morning... I just couldn't wake up... and laid abed until 9:45. Yikes!

Nothing much new going on here.
Looking forward to visiting my Dad and Moms next week.
Hope you have a great day!
~Tammy~

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Just rambling

BRRRR.... it was 7 degrees when we got up this morning. The pond across the property line is frozen... very scary, knowing those little kids.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have been working every day this week. Since I don't have Matthew today, I am going in at noon and will work until the counting is done, or until close tonight.

Ben is off, so the twins won't be home alone. Not that they would be scared or anything. I'm just a bit (over)protective of them. Funny to think that I was in charge of five younger kids from 4:45 am until 6:00 pm, five days a week, when I was two years YOUNGER than Dan and Sam.

Yesterday, I ran into a short 'conflict' at work. I was told we were having a store meeting, at 7:00 pm on Dec. 23rd. I told the boss I wouldn't be there... I would be out of town. He truly looked shocked. "But, you don't celebrate Christmas! Where are you going?"
"To my Dad's house, for a family dinner." Boss said the meeting will go on without me. That's OK. (Still think the 23rd is a DUMB time for a meeting!)

This is the first "Christmas" dinner we have been to, in some 25 years, though it may just be the twins and I attending. Tom works the 23rd and 24th.. I don't know about Ben yet. I haven't heard whether Becky and Tommy are coming, or Bill and his family. Pretty sure my brother Roger will be there, maybe even my brother Robbie. (We learned a few days ago that Robbie's ex wife has also planned a big gathering at the same time, so Rob's kids will likely be there, and not at my Dad's.) Haven't heard whether my brother Rick and his family will be there or not.

And this is just two weeks away! Wow.

Ben is planning to make chicken noodle for supper tonight. Maybe chili tomorrow... Tom will be here, and can make pretty good chili. (Too hot for me, though.)
Guess I better get things rolling here, I have to leave in about 45 minutes!
Have a very blessed day!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Snow?

There is no snow in today's forecast. The high is 23* and the low is 14*, with a 20% change of precipitation. Yet the sky is spitting tiny frozen flakes. Not really "snowing". Just frozen bits floating from the sky.... enough you can see them coming down. Not enough to say "we got snow!"

My brain hurts. I skipped out the last hour of work last night... with a low grade fever and a headache. I got ONE pre-inventory count done. This ONE happened to be three double columned pages of woodruff keys, nuts, bolts, washers, cotter pins... each of which has to be manually counted. No handy-dandy scale to calibrate and calculate that there are 367 washers instead of the 356 the computer says we have. Takes more time to COUNT those suckers than the entire box of them is worth! My co-workers tend to skip the counts like these, and leave them for those of us who come in to 'help out'. That's OK. For the most part, I stood in one spot and dumped each little box out, then counted the parts back into the container. A nice quiet corner of the building. My co workers, in appreciation of me doing the dreaded nuts and bolts count, didn't come by saying 87, 34, 98 ,12 ... as we usually do to one another when someone is trying to count small items.

Yesterdays roast beast is going to turn into a nice stew for today. If I didn't already have the roast, today would have been a great day for chili. Maybe we ought to bake cookies, or bread. It is COLD and it will be comforting to have the oven going. We will see. It is Benny's day off, and he is going to take Daniel and Sam to the library for me... and run those other errands I have been avoiding. I will stay here with Matthew.

Well, time to get this day rolling a bit faster. Have a blessed day!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cold and Rainy

It is just barely above freezing, and looks like a cold front is pushing this way. We may get ice. I don't like ice, especially if I have to work! We live in a very hilly area.

It is after 10 am and Matthew is still sleeping. I will be reheating his oatmeal, looks like.

I am almost seeing auto parts in my sleep, as our store prepares for a wall to wall inventory next Monday. We are doing "pre-counts" this week.

Oh boy! I just heard from the mother of two of my grandkids. I get to have Connor and Alana on Friday night!

I won't get to see MUCH of them, as I work til 7:00 pm and then have to be back to work Saturday by 8:00 am. But I will take what I can get.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Monday busyness

Boss man at O's asked me to please come in every afternoon this week, after Matt goes home. So I will gain an extra 16 hours this week working from 3-7pm. (And still working my normal Fri-Sun schedule). The annual inventory is next week, and we have to count every part, wall to wall. (I inventoried AC orings yesterday!)
I am going to have to go to town. Today. We are out of bread and eggs- leading to much grumbling among the troops. Even more grumbling from me, as I will have to take Matt along. I also have a package to mail, or I'd just pick up the groceries on my way home from work. (Which I may do anyway... I can postpone mailing packages, can't I?)

It is cold and gloomy here, and my bones ache. I had planned to make a crock pot roast beast for supper, but just discovered that someone left a package of thawed chicken in the fridge. Since Mr C made goulash last night, the chicken has had to have been thawed a couple of days... surprise, surprise! Guess I will do a mexican chicken casserole tonite. Maybe even do it in the crockpot. With me gone during the supper cooking hours all week, the crockpot is going to get a real work out.

I got Connor and Alana's gifts "from Daddy" a few days ago. I finally remembered gift wrap- so need to be getting them fixed up.
Yawn. I just want to crawl back under the covers.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Another hour...

Until my work weekend begins. I am sort of stressed out here, between (home)school and a possible crisis here. (I am unable to discuss it at this time, since things may just blow over.) The school, at least, Mr C has stepped up and helped. (Sam has been mouthy about doing several subjects he feels are below his abilities).

Yesterday, Dan wore the chain maille that the boys have put together when we went to the library. The gentle clinking sounded like a distant Salvation Army bell ringer. He had many folks gather around to hear about how they had created the maille out of a roll of fencing wire.

Funny about the SA bell ringers. As we approached the WalMart entrance where a bell ringer stood... Daniel whispers, "Bring out your dead! Bring out your dead!" (A line from a Monty Python movie.) I will never be able to walk past one of these bell ringers again without giggling at the remembrance. Our family has the weirdest sense of humor.

The gumbo I made for supper turned out pretty well. Not exactly like Seneca's, but still good. I even added okra. (Adding OK is a big deal for me... I can't stand the slime it makes. Instead of fresh okra, I used some breaded frozen okra, which I deep fried first. Cooked the snot slime right out of it. Maybe I better have a nice bowl of gumbo before heading off to work.

I did get some lactose digesting enzyme yesterday. Unfortunately for me, I came in starving and had some leftover spinach dip from Thanksgiving (part of an unused jar). It was all I had eaten all day... and when the lactose symptoms hit me... THEN I read the jar: Contains Milk and Soy products! Too late for the enzyme. I did put the enzyme to the test this morning... I took some, then had a bowl of cereal. I was miserable in five minutes, with the 'choking' feeling milk products cause in the hiatus hernia. But in a short time, even that feeling passed. (When the 'choking' feeling hits, it usually lasts for hours.)

Guess its time for me to get ready to go. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

After two days of hibernating..

I have to go out.
Last night's supper was sausage gravy with biscuits. I ended up with the "choking" feeling I get when I eat anything milk based. Time to get some 'lactaid' or something. I have to go to the grocery store... we are out of 'taters, onions, tortilla chips, eggs.
Samuel got a phone call last night... actually FOR him. He was so surprised he could barely respond, LOL. It was the library letting him know a book he had reserved has come in... so we will go to the library today. And stop by to pay the rent. Mr C told me to send it off last week, and I totally forgot. oops.

So, while I don't have Matthew or O'Reilly's today, I do have errands.
The boys' are champing at the bit to get started , so i better go get showered and ready to go!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Colder

It is colder here today. I was told yesterday that we could get anywhere from a dusting to 7" of snow today. BRRRR! But snow is better than ICE! So far, no snow.

But I do have aching joints, especially in my back and right knee- the one traumatized in the accident back before the twins were born. So the barometric pressure must be changing.

For supper tonight, I am going to have to make something that requires a lot of milk. Maybe gravy? We thought we were low on milk, and got 2 gallons. But were had a gallon and a half in the other fridge. Maybe potato soup... one of my favorite 'comfort foods'. Yeah, I know... whatever I make with milk in it, I will pay for. Maybe I ought to get some "lact-aid" tablets. Milk products bloat me up like a balloon. But... gravy! I love gravy! I told Dan to check the freezer for pork chops. I'm sure I can come up with something to use up milk. Funny to think we used to go through more than a gallon every day!

I have to either go to the PO myself today, or send Benny. I have boxes to send out. Ben has one he has to send himself. I managed to not leave the house at all yesterday. I would probably be a hermit if I could get away with it!

I am hoping you all have a blessed and wonderful day!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Some done...

Yesterday, I got the two soonest birthdays I buy gifts for taken care of.
Jade and Chris are both getting books! I got a card in the mail for Teeny. (Tom's sister). I got Bill and Glynna's forgotten packet of Nickole pictures sent back to them. (Please don't forget to send one to Gma Kathie once they arrive!)

I got holiday presents for Connor and Alana on behalf of their Dad, who cannot shop for himself right now. I forgot gift wrap, so will have to get that at a dollar store, as I sure don't intend to go back to a WalMart, nor a mall before the month is out.
(I will force Benny to get the groceries, as he is there anyway!, or just shop at the grocery next door to O'Reilly's.)

We got at least half a dozen loads of laundry done yesterday, and are started on it again today. Dan and Sam are doing school work. They have been learning to draw and do some flash animation. Ben got a drawing pad that allows them to draw directly into the computer. I may let them use my camera later to try a flash animation using Lego's instead of drawn pictures. Sam's art is REALLY getting good. He had been imitating some of Benjamin's drawings, but has now moved into his own.

For supper tonight: Fajita's. I have tortillas and bell peppers that have to be used up soon. (Yeah, I pick the bell peppers out of mine... ewww!) Probably have the boys chop "ump" the rest of the bell peppers and go ahead and freeze them. The veggie tray remainders will be steamed and served up as a side dish. (Yes you were right, I bought too much fresh veggies. Eat them and shut up!)

Yawn. I have no idea why I have remained so sleepy lately. I have headed to bed by 7 several nights of late. I can't 'sleep in' around here, I have to be up by 6:45 on days with Matthew, and not long past that on the days I work at O's.

Guess I better get back to Matt, laundry, and school. Have a great day!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving....

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We had 19 people in this small house for dinner Thursday. My turkey was dry, the ham was overcooked, I burned the sweet potatoes and the stuffing... but we had a great visit. For once, Grandma Ruby's Hot Rolls turned out perfectly.

Mom and Ralph brought up their travel trailer, but I still had kids "camping" out in the van. Friday, Tom and I took the kids and grandkids ice skating. Mr C did his grandpa thing pretty well, helping the kids on the ice after getting them all skated up. I got to hold Kimber and take pictures.

The house is completely wrecked... the TSD wallowed on pillows and blankets that were removed from the temporary beds. I had planned to keep the pillows and blankets CLEAN, leaving only sheets to wash. But... I went to work and the boys and Mr C let the TSD do whatever. Mr C thinks "spraying them with febreeze" will be fine. NOT! They WILL be rewashed.

Dan and Sam want to go to the library today. It might happen. But first, I have December birthdays to think about: Tom's sister on the 4th, Jade on the 7th, Nola and Lalani on the 8th, Chris on the 12th, Becky on the 16th... and so on all month. Becky was already 'presented', so I only have Chris and Jade to get something for. I have cards on hand for the ones I don't get gifts for. Tomorrow is the 1st of December. WHERE did this year go?

At least the laundry is started, schoolwork going, Matt still sleeping. Guess Thanksgiving really wore him out! I better find more to do than play online! Have a blessed day!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Busy Day

We were up and busy early on today. Right now, we are having a SECOND break. (Or second breakfast, as the case may be for some of the kids.)

The front room is presentable, though the kitchen is in shambles. Ben has been working on his room and doing a mighty fine job of it. I am breaking from the laundry room... where about five loads of clothes magically appeared today, despite me having asked for "all" the dirty clothes yesterday. I guess we need to work on the definition of "all". The laundry room is our 'catch all' room. It has packed boxes, ready for our big move. It has Tom's dresser, my big desk, the washer and dryer, Tom's extra mechanics tool box, a chest freezer, and a refrigerator. Seldom used items are stored here. I am preparing it to be used as a bedroom. Mostly, I am sneezing. Whether it is from dust, or must, or what... I am almost to the point of NEEDING an antihistamine.

We have dug the extra leaves for the table out of the closet, and the extra flatware. I got myself a new set of drinking glasses a couple of weeks ago, and room has been made for them in the cupboard. The extra groceries and snacks have been laid in... bring on the family!

Well, there was the last swallow of my hot tea... I suppose I better get back to work. May your day be as blessed as mine!

Monday, November 23, 2009

I saw GROWNUPS next door....

A rare thing with those little kids. Two adult women out looking concerned and yelling, as we drove up from our trip to town.
No bodies floating in the pond... a good thing. (The kids have been down there shoving one another in all weekend, no adults in sight.)

So as we finished carting in the last of the groceries, we finally see the kids running towards their home... mere specks on the property behind ours. They had gone FAR afield. Wonder if the walloping they are getting will keep them closer to home, or if the mother's scare will cause her to keep a closer eye on them? Probably NOT.

I suppose I ought to call my "break" over and get back to work around here! We decided to do our errands this morning, library and grocery store. The turkey is in to thaw. About all I need now are some Debbie snacks. I figure to get those on the way to get the kids tomorrow. We are fixed up for spaghetti and salad tomorrow evening, sandwiches Wednesday noon, enchiladas Wednesday evening, brunch and snacks Thursday until supper... and leftovers after that!

We will start baking Wednesday. Hoo boy! I am having fun!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Best layed plans

and all that.
The original Thanksgiving plans appear to be scrapped. At least as far as timing and such. But over the years, I have learned to be flexible... and that more you plan to the Nth degree, the more likely things are to go wrong.
So:
Thanksgiving dinner at 6:00 PM next Thursday. We will have a big brunch earlier in the day and plenty of snacks and such. Mr C will (probably) be working until 5:30. Ben is (supposed) to get off at 2:00 PM. Tommy and Becky will arrive when they arrive... depends on how early they actually get out the door Thursday morning, and how many baby stops they have to make along the way. Roger isn't coming, he will be going to our Dad's house instead. Stephen has to work... DARN! Except the year that Jack passed away and Stephen accompanied Becky to Ohio for the funeral, I don't think he has ever had Thanksgiving with our family.

The fewer number of folks here on Wednesday won't stop the enchiladas... the leftovers will be great for snacking on Thursday, with dinner being so late.

I pick up Connor and Alana Tuesday evening. I will do the last of the shopping that day, I think. (Jennifer, what sort of breakfast cereals and pop do the kids like?)

Bill and Glynna: Any idea of your date of arrival yet? What sort of things should I have for Nickole to munch on? You can either comment the answers here, or email me. (Hey there is even that novel device called a telephone... but as Ben said, "Mom, that's so 20th Century!")

Have a blessed day everyone. This is my "Monday", and I know I have to work full shifts every day this weekend.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Unexpected Day Off

For whatever reason, Matt's Daddy took today off. So I don't have an extra kid around. Dan and Sam asked about going Ice Skating, so that may be what we do. IF they get with the program and get their school done.

I don't think *I* will skate today, I will just sit and watch.

Becky and I were laughing again this morning about cleaning... she re-arranged her kitchen cupboards yesterday. I beat the boys with sticks haunted the boys every waking moment until they got their rooms clean. OK, so not CLEAN clean... but acceptably sanitary. One of the twins actually cleaned out the hallway linen storage shelves... without being asked! The kitchen got both swept and mopped. And the laundry was caught up once again. I checked my shopping list and added to it... hmmm, never did get those fridges cleaned out.

We are having trouble figuring out how to get some of the kids here for Thanksgiving. Looks like we may have a VERY late meal Thursday. Tommy has to work Wednesday, and then it is a 10 hour drive on to here. Ben doesn't get off until 2:00pm Thursday, so we were already looking at 3:00 or later for Thanksgiving dinner. Maybe we will have to do a big "brunch" spread that day to tide everyone over. Hmmm, maybe Mr C can go ahead and "bank" Thanksgiving... have dinner at 6:00? (Just thinking 'aloud' here).

I know it will all work out. I sure wish Stephen was getting to come. And Chris, with his family. *sigh*

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A 'brisk' afternoon

As much as I whined and dreaded going in to Oreilly's yesterday, the work wasn't that bad. I started with the window clings. You know what happens when you pull 30x36 window clings off? You get shocked. It is pretty well unavoidable. They build up quite a static charge. It fills my co-workers with glee to stand inside and watch me get zapped.

Putting the new clings up involves slopping the window with a goodly amount of water... I used very warm water, since it was 40* out and my hands are so cold sensitive. I keep the new clings inside, far from the water. I learned from experience, one drop of water on the paper backing of a cling, and the paper will NOT come off. So the clings stay inside.

I peel off all the old clings... ZAP! ZAP!ZAP! ZAP! then slop one window at a time... run inside, dry my hands, peel a cling, rush back out before the water dries, position the cling, squeegee it on, and then move to the next window.

I did the marquee next... and even then, the lights came on before I finished. Indoors took about an hour... so I was done a few minutes before six. Once my body adjusted to the outdoor temperature, it really wasn't too bad. I had on a double layer of shirts, my jacket, gloves, and a ball cap. I put the hood of the jacket up over the ball cap, and was quite comfortable.

The chicken noodley stuff was good... a nice warm, filling meal after being out in the cold. Ben had arrived home just before I had to leave, so he got to finish making it.

********AAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH*********


I forget how annoyingly messy little kids can be. Matt's Dad brought him in this morning with breakfast, a sausage mcmuffin and chocolate milk. About three bits into the sausage patty, Matt decided he was *not hungry*.
Since he will normally eat two large bowls of cereal and then want something else... I took this to mean what it did: He didn't WANT a sausage mcmuffin after all.
Mean lady that I am... I made him sit there until he ate it. He finished the chocolate milk early on, and wanted more milk. I told him no... not until he finished his sausage. He did eventually comply. I sent him to get dressed, and poured him some milk while he was gone. He comes back, and asks for milk. I told him I had some poured for him. He yanks up the glass like it was empty... and it wasn't. Milk goes everywhere... so he dropped the (plastic) glass on the floor.

MeTammy was NOT pleased.
MeTammy yelled.
That was the last of the milk... so I guess he can have some water when he is done being traumatised.
*sigh*
I shouldn't have yelled. Had it been one of my own kids, would I have reacted the same way? Probably so.
Mr C thinks I am "too hard" on Matt. I think I am less hard on him than I ought to be at times.
I cleaned up the milk. I didn't spank him... it was an accident.

************************
Today's agenda... I am thinking the scrubdown of both fridges. Dan and Sam cleaning their room. Bathrooms. Can't think of a single reason I have to leave the house... which suits me just fine. Maybe I can tackle a couple more 'hot spots' where clutter builds up. (Since these 'hotspots' are places that actually show... you might be right in thinking I have pretty much got the hidden disorder temporarily tamed.) Oh... I suppose MOPPING the entire kitchen will be on the list, since I have an obviously clean spot where I cleaned up the milk.

Hope you have a great day! (Kids and all)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tuesday!!!!!!!!!

Yesterdays errands went well. We zipped right through the library, and headed up to the Jane, MO., WalMart. We stopped by Papa Murphy's on the way, for a Take and Bake pizza. Got there right at shift change, and must have been there 20+ minutes before they even GOT to our pizza. Once we got to WallyWorld, we zipped right through... up until check-out. The lady ahead of us had quite a bit of stuff, as did we. I sent the boys to get an extra basket to speed up HER check out. (We were in the garden center.) A LOOOOOOOONG line began to form behind us. A second cashier finally came along, and we swapped to his line. He actually had us OUT THE DOOR before the person who had been ahead of us in the other line was done checking out. And we had as much, or more, stuff than she did. The guy told us we better hurry home before the SNOW hit!

We got home MINUTES before Mr C did. Daniel and Sam races to get things put away before he walked in the door, while I got the pizza on to bake. They were successful. Mr C commented on the pizza. Said he had never had one of this variety before. (Papa Murphy's 5 meat). It is the kind I get every time... we have had it on at least 2 other occasions here. He commented on it last time as well. But he swears he never had this kind before. Oh well. He ate FOUR slices. I barely made it through one, and I'm not even sure the twins had seconds. No wonder we don't have this often.
************
Jimmy Raynor (the goldfish) seems to be feeling MUCH better. He is actively swimming around the tank. Colloidal silver as a fish medicine!

Matthew was VERY good yesterday. I was suprised and relieved.

Daniel asked if he could make an apple pie yesterday, and I let him. Tom had some at lunch and pronounced it the BEST apple pie he had eaten in a long time. We will have to try again to duplicate the recipe for Thanksgiving.
**************
The snow didn't happen here... but it is cold. And I have to work this afternoon and will be having to change the sign outside. brrrr

Monday, November 16, 2009

since my last blog...

It is another fine day. We have an expected high of 44, which probably hit at midnight. It is rainy and chilly!

Yesterday, I took the day off so that we could go look at a couple of houses. The real estate lady had a blonde moment, and didn't schedule us to see a habited house that Tom had specifically asked to see- the whole purpose in my taking the day off. Oh well. She did show us the PERFECT place. A pristine doublewide. Huge. GREAT kitchen. A laundry/ mud room. The master suite is bigger than the double sized living room where we now live. On 13+ acres (between 13 and 15 acres). Reasonably priced. At the end of a road, only about 3/4 mile of gravel road, the rest paved.
Sigh.
In real estate, its all about location. This perfect place is a full 10 miles SOUTH of Rose, OK. A full 50 miles from here. I cannot see Tom driving 100 miles a day... and Ben would be driving 140 miles a day until he could transfer to Talequah (or Siloam, which would still be 30 miles away). It is simply too far away from XNA. The search goes on.

Matthew is back with us today, after having been visiting his grandparents since early October, while I awaited Kimber's arrival. He had to remember he is a big boy here, and do big boy things like get dressed. I laid out his clothes, but he has to put them on... a task I know he can do. He *forgot* how to put on his shirt, until I had one of the boys set a timer. The timer works wonders on his memory.

We lost two of our aged goldfish this weekend, to some disease. I didn't know they were sick until TWO had died. Poor Finnix and Tassedar are gone. Only Jimmy Raynar remains... and he is sick. We changed out 2/3 of the water, put in a fresh filter, and added colloidal silver to the water. He showed immediate improvement, and has made it through another night. We have added silver several times now. Jimmy Raynar actually felt up to eating a few fish flakes this morning. He still isn't out of the woods, though.

I have quite a few errands that need to be done. Library and WalMart, the butcher shop and the bank. Two are east of here, two are west. Since I have to go to work Tuesday afternoon after Matthew goes home, I figure the westward errands can wait until then. The new Oreilly's sale goes into effect Wednesday, so Tuesday I will be doing the old sale tear down, new sale set-up.

If you need windshield wiper blades (buy one get one free!) or antifreeze (ready to use Peak Universal $5 a gal.), get to your nearest Oreilly's before they close on Tuesday. (Now back to your regularly scheduled blog)

I have, finally, caught up all the laundering of linens stored in the boys closets. Clean sheets, pillows, and blankets are bagged and ready to use. Dog fur free. Hooray! I had forgotten how many we had stored. Mr C is ready to haul it to the storage unit, but I told him it will need to be AFTER Thanksgiving.

May you have a blessed and wonderful day. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wednesday

Last night, my former DIL brought her share of my grandkids to see us. We had a nice visit, even if it was brief. The kids are growing like weeds! I had made "Aunt Jean's Lasagna*" for supper... and they got to eat the 'leftovers'. (It was an impromptu last minute visit... the lasagna a happy accident!) I had got the lasagna a few days ago, stocking up for Thanksgiving week. Dan had asked if we could cook the lasagna last night... and not having any better ideas, we did.

* "Aunt Jean's Lasagna" is Stouffers premade, frozen lasagna. When one of the boys was about five, he asked Aunt Jean if she would teach him to make lasagna as good as hers when he got big enough. She told him he was big enough right then to learn her recipe... and showed him the box in the trash.

It seems funny that the "party size" pan of lasagna has, in the past, barely fed our family. These days, I have leftovers when I make it. But God sent folks to help us eat it up... it was just the right size... and had gone into the oven two hours before I learned anyone was stopping by!
******************

Today, Tom is taking a late lunch, as we have a 'lunchtime' appointment to see two houses. We have actually looked at one before- which sold the same day we saw it, but is on the market again- for more $$ this time! The other, we have done a drive- by on... it is in need of a lot of TLC. (Or is it the "DIY Channel" that does all the home improvement shows?) This will be our first interior visit to this place. Both are close to where we are now, actually on the same road with one another, some 3 miles south of our current location. (We also have 3 places scheduled to see on Friday morning, and two or three more Tom wants to see before making an offer on a place.)

(Breath holding is not taking place.)

*************
The boys are cleaning out their closets, so I can wash stored bedding and linens for Thanksgiving. I have already found a box of pillowcases! HOORAY! Some of this stuff hasn't seen the light of day for 4 years or more, but has absorbed the smells associated with teenaged boys closets... musty, dirty sneakery, doggy smells. I suppose I out to stage at least an annual, if not semi-annual, closet shakedown. As last time, once the bedding is washed and dried, it will go into sealed plastic bags to await use.

LOL, the last two days of "cleaning" is, as usual... Stuff That Doesn't Show. (We have ascertained I don't need "cream of___" Soup... 19 cans on hand. Nor chopped green chiles... 7 cans. Plenty of green beans...29 cans. Enough tomato paste to repair a whole garden full of broken tomatoes, and a mountain of tomato sauce. Funny, I don't use a LOT of tomato sauce!)

Goodness... during the typing of this, I have wandered away so many times... answering the phone, getting dressed, starting laundry, munching on crusty bread dipped in olive oil and balsamic vinegar... Guess I better hit "publish" and get the twins in here on their computer based math program!

Have a blessed day!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Logistics, logistics

I know, I know. I have said MANY times I love logistics.

Right now, I am working on my Thanksgiving logistical problem. How to add 6 to 8 adult bodies and 5 more kids to our house, and still have those who need to sleep, ABLE to sleep. I am figuring that Ben will need his room, since he will still be working. Ditto with Mr C. So, I am intending to add Tommy and Roger to Ben's room. Computer access, smelly guys... works out OK. I am pretty sure I can get two more twin mattresses in there.

Next sticky wicket: Do I toss out Dan and Sam to put Becky and Stephen and the kids in the twins room? I can add a queen air bed in there, once the mattresses are moved to other rooms. It would give Kimber and Ty a nap area... and I can probably nap Nickole in there during the day. It will also corral Becky and Stephen's stuff.

Next, Bill and Glynna. The laundry room on another airbed? My laundry room is the bigger than any of the bedrooms. Glynna doesn't travel lightly, so I have to find a place for her to have her stuff. (Sorry Glynna, but you KNOW it is true. I have never seen anyone need a super sized suitcase for an overnight trip before!) They can let Nickole nap either in my room or the twins room during the days.

I still have Connor and Alana and the twins, plus Mom and Ralph. If Mom and Ralph bring their travel trailer, I will put either Bill and Glynna out there, or the twins, with Mom. Connor and Alana can sleep on the hide-a-bed here in the house. If Mom and Ralph don't bring the trailer... another air bed in the "dining room" is their usual spot. The twins can "camp" in the van- it has a king sized bed, which I have slept comfortably on, on several occasions. The airbeds in the laundry room and dining room will have to be deflated and stored each day, but that is "do-able".

I really miss MY HOUSE! (The one we sold five years ago, in Central High). My house had room for everyone, without needing campers and vans. Oh well, guess I ought to get over it already.

Ahhh. I feel better, having come to somewhat of a plan of sleeping arrangements.

Daniel is organizing the lower cupboards today, and Sam the upper ones. I am working on menues, since I expect my company will be here more than just Thanksgiving day. I have to do the menues before I can assess whether or not I have ingredients and supplies on hand. My 'decor' for the holiday will be limited... I have one little plastic "turkey pilgrim", a new tablecloth (Thanks Mom!) and some candles.

Our "traditional" meal for a crowd, served on several Thanksgiving eves, is "Leesa's Enchiladas". After trying Leesa's recipe, I made some adaptations. They are YUMMY and easy. I may do the big crowd cop out for one meal... spaghetti. (Remind me to prep some sauce beforehand!)

Kids, the Thanksgiving menu as it now stands: Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, candied sweet potatoes, fruit salad, green bean casserole, Gma Ruby's hot rolls, and a relish tray.
Oh yeah, pies for dessert. Am I missing anything? I think I need at least one more veggie.

Thanksgiving Eve: Enchiladas, Spanish rice, Salad.

Breakfasts: breakfast burritoes, eggs and sausage, biscuits and gravy, blueberry pancakes. (Not all on the same day.)

Friday- Sunday: leftovers; turkey pot pie, turkey noodle soup.

Guess I better lay in some sandwich makings too. And hit up the Little Debbie outlet for snacks.

Whew... I got a lot accomplished, right here on my blog. And I won't LOSE it like I am prone to do with my paper notes!

Have a great day~

Monday, November 9, 2009

*snooze button*

It is overcast and cool today. I didn't sleep well last night, despite trying my usual method of taking an antihistamine after a couple of hours of tossing and turning. Once I finally got to sleep, I sure didn't want to get up.

But here it is, a fresh new day. This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it! The boys are on their lessons, I have done my computer surfing already. Even if I am still in my jammies.
I haven't gone through and checked on the laundry status... or anything really. I'm sure I have PLENTY to do! I know I have pictures to mail out- I promised people. Some are actually ready to drop in the mail, others still need to be attached to letters and addressed. (Gotta love the proud Granny, right?)

Guess I best get started... I may post later if anything worthwhile occurs to me!

Have a joyful day!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Early Bird.. or the Second Mouse?

(The early bird gets the worm... but the second mouse gets the cheese!)

Once again, I am off work early. (Becky call me!)
When I left, the store had taken in $500. for the day. The 'justification' for the store to remain open on weekends is $2500. So I go home and the two co-workers wait on... someone surely needs auto parts on a fine Sunday afternoon? Of the $500- my cash deposit was $235.00- not counting credit card sales (which DO count towards the total). So the top salesperson is sent home- go figure.
Really, though, my two co-workers are supporting themselves and/or family. My paycheck "helps" but is not something our family must depend on- so, when someone has to be sent home, I feel better about it being me- rather than someone whose survival is dependent on the paycheck.

And I am always ready to head home, LOL.

Remember my relief when the little neighbor kids moved away?
They are back.

Tension is already mounting at the property line. Their great grandpa, who owns the place, was a good neighbor. But these kids... these poor kids. I told Mr C I felt like I ought to call CPS the first time they are down 'swimming' or 'ice skating' unsupervised on the pond. These poor kids... what kind of a life will they have under their present conditions? I don't mind big families. I truly am pro- family. But most deliberate big families look after their kids. They take care of them. The kids have shoes... the parents WATCH them. Not these kids. They are rude, rowdy, unsupervised... starved for attention... and who knows if they are simply starved?
Poor kids. What am I to do? What would Jesus do? The kids are constantly screaming at our TSD (two stupid dogs)- kicking them and chasing them with sticks. When over on this property- they damage things and steal... they don't know any better.

I want to move.
*sigh*

I just got a call from Matthew's Dad. He was supposed to be back tomorrow. Due to family illness, Matt will be gone at least until next week... then miss Thanksgiving week... and all but the first week of December. So I may only have him two weeks (or less) between now and the end of the year. My boss at O'reilly's has work planned for me... so the income should be better.

May each of you have a blessed day. Welcome to little Diez Zesch... born early this morning! (Her name subject to change, LOL)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Video for Becky and the GGma's

over at moocrew2 go down under the albums to "Video's". "Moocrew2" is a clickable link.

I had the video on my camera and finally figured out how to upload it. Kimber is just over 24 hours old.

Before and after

The pictures in the post below are my before and after shots of cleaning from yesterday and this morning. I have several more "before" pictures taken, but they don't get to be here til I have cleaned up the area, so I can have "afters" with them.

2009-11-04

Click here to view these pictures larger

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

It's my Mom's fault!

OK, a person can really only blame themselves for their actions. It is just so hard to resist your heredity sometimes.

I have "clutter piles" nagging me. Stuff just stacks up, waiting to be dealt with, and I ignore it to the point of shame. What do I do when I clean? Do I start with those nagging piles? Noooo... MOM knows where I start cleaning.

Maybe not the exact place- but that it will be someplace that doesn't "show". The bookcase facing the front door is a wreck. So... I organize the canned goods under the kitchen counter. The table is piled with stuff people just sat down and walked away from. So, I run the vacuum under my bed and behind the door. The computer desk is so mounded up, I can scarcely move the mouse... and not only do I sit here and type... I can ignore the pile in favor of picking dead leaves off my houseplants.

I know Mom is laughing.

I best get busy on the stuff that SHOWS. Thanksgiving will be here in no time.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The way God works....

I can't tell you all the ways God works in our lives. But I see them every day. My oldest son is in a very hard place. He has lost everything he held dear to him. A couple of weeks ago, he wrote me a letter and asked me if THIS was what it took for God to get hold of him. He was depressed and doubting his salvation, and the forgiveness of God.

Mr C had been reading an article (sermon?) by one of his favorite teachers, J.Preston Eby. He said he felt in his heart that I should send that article to DS#1. After reading it, I agreed. We haven't heard whether he actually received the article, and if he had, whether he had read it. Last night, my DD called us. She had a letter from DS#1, and wanted to read it to us. Apparantly the article had reached him... and even more, it REACHED him. God reached his heart when none of us could do so.

Sometimes we are so caught up in our selves, in our daily life, that God cannot reach us. We feel like we are just fine spiritually, not a care upon us. God has to do some serious shaking to make us let loose of complacency and really seek what he wants for us, what direction he wants our lives to take. "Oh yeah, fine God. I'm great today. Thanks for everything. Love you. Bye!"

Many of the authors of the New Testament were put in places where they had nothing to do except pray and listen for the voice of God. There was no busyness of living. No lawns to mow, homework to grade, animals to feed. Just time on their hands, which they filled with prayer. Their time with God gave us many books of the Bible. God knows we cannot all be in enforced idleness- and that many who are STILL don't seek Him.

My prayers are that DS#1 will be completely transformed by his time spent seeking the Lord. A new creation. God has already given him a new heart. Thank you, Lord.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Times Change

This is the first week of November. Already. Dark gets here at an alarming hour. We looked at two more houses this weekend- neither was worth the effort of looking, much less telling about.
I dressed as a "pioneer" woman for Halloween at Oreilly's- quite by accident. Turns out the local school is the Gentry Pioneers. I thought I was a cowgirl, but didn't have boots. Hannah Montana, a California surfer dude, and a prison inmate completed the crew.

The boys are back on their lessons- doubling up on several today. Since our bodies are still on "daylight savings" time, we were busy bright and early. Laundry is pretty well caught up, and the boys cleaned their rooms over the weekend. We were going to go to the library, but I seem to be the only one who actually 'needed' to go- so we blew that off the list. Why go out when I can stay home?

The bed is stripped and bedding in the dryer- otherwise, I'd sure vote for a nap about now! (Maybe I will just have to sleep on a "nekkid" bed.) *yawn* *again*

Nothing much going on in my neck of the woods today. Just the way I like it. Drama free.

There are MORE new pictures up at : http://www.moocrew2shutterfly.com

Thursday, October 29, 2009

New header...

This is my Dad's driveway in east Texas. I took this picture (or maybe Daniel did) when we went to visit back in September.

It is a quiet, rainy morning. We are getting back on track with life. Trying to anyway. The boy's washed the STINKING TSD this morning. Didn't help much... now they smell like WET stinking dogs.
I am looking forwards to Thanksgiving and the end of the year. I am apprehensive about what the future holds for our family, but I know we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.

This afternoon, I am supposed to go see my grandchildren, Connor and Alana. I want fresh pictures of them for a photo book I am working on, of my grandkids. (Seneca, pretty please can I have some of Gavin, and the girls?) (Glynna, I need clearer shots of Nickole.)

Tomorrow is the annual O'reilly customer appreciation day at our store. Free food to all comers from 11:00 until we run out of BBQ. (Last year that was before 1:00). I have to go in early. Which makes for an extra long day. Fridays always seem to drag, since I don't get off until 7:00.

Julie Z, are you hanging in there with the 31st as a delivery date? I will be praying for you!
Hugs to all... and this is how you do it if no one is around: Place your right hand on your left shoulder, and your left hand on your right shoulder. Then squeeze. That is a cyber-hug... just like my Mommy showed me!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wednesday

Gosh How the flies are timing.
Here it is the 28th already. I will get to go see Connor and Alana tomorrow, if I don't come down sick. Jammers is home sick today. So far, most of the kids are more like me when sick... just leave me alone in my misery. Sam was a tiny bit like Tom. He laid on the couch moaning while he was sick. At least he moaned quietly. He may be saving the horrific moans and groans for when he is married.
I wasn't feeling too well when I went to bed last night. It wasn't even 8pm. But I feel much better this morning. I suppose I should get the shopping out of the way, I do have a whole list now. Knowing me, I will put it off until I HAVE TO go. I am just not much of a "go" person.

Actually, I just discovered I DO have to go this morning. We are on the last roll of necessary paper. That is a must go, before someone "must go".

I had a "Becky Moment" yesterday. I was trying and trying to log into my email. I was bounced back, at least six times, to the "error in your name or password" page. I made sure I didn't have the Caps lock on. I typed the password slowly, watching every keystroke. I made sure I had used "dot com" instead of "comma com". Finally, I caught my mistake, just before I accused someone of messing with me and changing my password. I had tried logging in to my email at "." (dot) hotmail.com instead of "@" hotmail.com.
Duh!

Things here have been quiet... I can do without the drama. We do have two houses to look at this week, one Friday and another Saturday. Not holding my breath on either of them. I'm about to the place I would just as soon NOT look.

That's it for today, Hope your day is blessed and happy.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Economic Musings and other stuff

Yesterday, I was driving to town, and happened to be thinking (along the strange and convoluted lines my brain takes) about the economy. About this time last year, Tom and I were stocking up on canned goods and filling the freezer and such. We were sure the economy was headed for a big crash. So far, the crash hasn't come, but that doesn't mean that it won't come, soon.

My mind came up with the image of the mean older sibling (government) holding down the younger sibling (the US Citizens) while drooling a line of saliva over the younger ones face. Just as we are sure the spit is going to fall into our face, the big brother sucks it up... only to continue the torment. You are powerless and struggling as they laugh and hang their spit over your face, time and again. You just know, sooner or later, they are going to allow the spit to splat you right in the face. Then run away laughing.

Not that I would know anything about being the older sibling and being mean or anything.
Ahem.
**************
Since the twins have had the flu, my best laid plans of getting all caught up on schoolwork in one day has flown out the window. OK, so that wasn't a feasible plan anyway. They really are still recovering, so any schoolwork at all is an accomplishment. And I didn't manage to get the entire house completely cleaned yesterday either. I don't suppose that comes as a huge surprise to anyone, does it?
I did get the 'dining room' area of the front room cleaned up. I got the plants all watered, trimmed, and situated. (Yeah, the house is in chaos and I spent two hours trimming plant leaves.) I also got Mt. Washmore down to a mere molehill. And laundry detergent made. Errands ran. And supper cooked. And my expenses entered into the checkbook.

It looks like I got things accomplished, on paper. If only they were more visible to the eye accomplishments. I can thank Tommy for my early start this morning. Instead of sleeping in, I got a call at a bit past six am. Since I had to get up to answer the phone anyway- I was "up and at em" for the day.
May your day be blessed! I have more pictures up at http://www.moocrew2.shutterfly.com if you want to have a look!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Back on track, text

I had written a post through Shutterfly with the pictures. However, it didn't post the text. As for getting back on track- the twins have had the flu. They were in Ohio while I was in Texas. We have a lot of schoolwork to catch up on. And the house... sheesh. Four guys have been here alone for almost a week, and one guy alone for a week prior to that. This places reeks of dogs, has so much dust my Mommy would gasp, and is so cluttered I am on visual overload.

I need to go to town and deposit my check from the 15th, stop by and see Jennifer and the kids this afternoon, and try to prepare a real meal that doesn't involve pizza boxes or sandwich meat.

I am hoping Mom and Ralph can bring up the travel trailer for people to sleep in at Thanksgiving.
I am coming up with 16 people being here, though several of those are under the age of 8. Becky and Glynna, let me know what you would like to bring, so I don't double buy for the dinner. Or I can do dinner and maybe you can take turns on breakfasts? Just trying to sort this out early.

Have a blessed day, I really have to get busy!

Trying to get back on track...

Click here to view these pictures larger

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

more pictures of Kimber

Mommy and daughter


Uncle Tommy prepares to be the favorite Uncle... again!


My favorite of the pictures!



Kimber Ann!




Sunday.... NOT laboring!

















Stephen and Kimber









Tyrel loves his sister!










I got my present!



By the skin of my teeth! This is Kimber Ann, weighing into the world October 20, 2009, at 11:48pm. She weighed a modest 7 lbs. 1/2 oz., and a tall 19 3/4".


Mother and baby are doing beautifully.


Daddy had a load of critters to haul, and missed being at the birth. Nola (Becky's MIL) and the midwife and I were there for labor support, but Becky did so well on her own.


From the time Becky awakened from her nap yesterday, the contractions were a steady 2 minutes apart. The midwife arrived and checked B. (around 6:00pm), then went back off to see another patient. Labor just geared right up, and I called the midwife to return. Labor went from second gear into overdrive in short order. At 11:00 pm, Becky was dilated to 8cm, with a "lip". I didn't expect Baby to arrive before midnight, but she did. It was amazing.




Kimber was wide awake and looked at everyone. (As we got to the push phase, Becky's sister in laws came in to witness the birth). Becky's brothers Tommy and Bill Joe had arrived on the scene moments as the push phase started, but they decided to remain outside until we had a clean and "presentable" mother and child.




Happy birthday to Me! Happy Birthday, Kimber!


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

But so far I don't know if I will be a Grandmoo or a grumpaw today. Becky went to bed at 10 with strong contractions. I told her to wake me and call the midwife if they became strong enough to waken her, or if her water broke. She was still sleeping when I came over to make my reports. So I don't know if contractions are still happening. When I was having Becky, my water broke at 9:00 pm without so much as a twinge of contractions until I got up the next morning. Then labor started and Becky was born within five hours. So... we will see. I will keep folks updated!

Monday, October 19, 2009

We have....

Regular contractions! it is three days past the due date. The contractions are mild but regular. I am hoping this is it! (But if baby waits til after midnight... all the happier of birthday for Cowgranny!) Of course, it might be a false alarm. Keep Becky in your prayers! Safe, easy delivery of a healthy baby!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Impatient tapping of foot...

Still no baby. Becky had a few regular contractions last night... enough for us to start timing them. But they fizzled out. Today, she has had a few irregular contractions. We wandered around Snanjlo for awhile, got a few wantcessities.
I'm all for a nap, but it is getting a bit late for that... already after 6 and we still have to think of fixing supper.
I hope everyone is having a blesed day!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

No baby yet....

But Becky and I are having a nice visit and Tyrel is reminding me of certain two year olds I knew in the past!
Mr C is having a good time in Ohio.
The surface of the ground is finally drying enough here that I don't clump in gobs of mud every step I take away from the house. But the roads... heh heh. THAT is another matter. Nola took her camera with her to get pictures of her truck that TOMMY was driving this morning. It is the most thoroughly stuck vehicle Nola says she has seen to date. She rescued him on her way to the hiway this morning, where she was headed to pick up her other grandson Kyle. Nola graciously lent Tommy yet another of her trucks so that he could get on to work.

Guess that is all for now, I don't want to hog up a borrowed computer!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Details, details...

I have a few last minute things to do before heading out... like find a road atlas and some change... just in case, LOL. Yes, I know the route, I have traveled it many times. Even by myself. No, I am not nervous or afraid of driving so far alone. But I still like to have a map along... just in case. And change for the turnpikes... in case the booth is closed. again.

I think I have all my stuff gathered/ packed/ put in the car. hmm.. maybe take off the Oreilly's shirt and put on something warmer?
Anyway, Mom, it may be a bit after 9:00+ when I arrive. Call my cell if you want! Or if Becky starts laboring, I may changes directions entirely. (Hence the map).

Sooo... off here and on to the tripping.

Not Yet

Becky was pretty sure she was in labor last night. But I didn't rush into a 10 hour drive with no sleep. I laid down, having taken a prescribed headache medication that usually makes me sleep. Instead, it made my heart race and my head buzz. My thoughts were all over the chart. I wasn't sleeping!
About 4, I woke up( last time I had looked at the clock was shortly after 2 am). I thought about hitting the road, but decided to wait til 6 or so. I forced myself to go back to sleep. Becky called about 6:00... the contractions had stopped somewhere in the night.
So I am headed out to work. Sundays are notoriously slow, so I may head on out once I get off work today. To Ft Worth and stay the night at mom's if I haven't heard from Becky. (if I do hear she is contracting again, I would skip FW and go right on to her house.)
Anyway, please be praying for a safe delivery, an easy birth, and a healthy baby!
~Tammy~
PS I will try to post again before I take off

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Beautiful Day

The sun is shining, it is a crisp 64* outside, blue skies... and I was let out of work early! What could be better?
Well, having the home phone working for one. I am at the library... the phone has been down more than 24 hours now.
I have a tupperware party I was invited to... and for once, I will be on time instead of 2+ hours late!
Ahhh, I am so enjoying the afternoon!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

What would we do without friends...





Especially friends who look at your haircut and say- "Uhh... I can fix that!"


and then they do!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

haircut


My new haircut

Ben's birthday...

We left first rattle out of the box to go get his insurance on his truck, and the title changed into his name. The insurance agency says the new policy doesn't go into effect until tomorrow, so we have to delay the title until then. We stopped by Sears, because yesterday when I looked online, I saw that the tool set Tom wanted to get Ben was only available in Fayetteville. So Dan and I went to Fayetteville... and I failed to notice the tools were some $70 MORE than they were supposed to be!

So when we realized that last night, I thought I would see if the little local "hometown" Sears in Siloam would make it right. After discussion, we found that they DID have the same tool set, in "last year's model"... for $20 LESS than I had found them in Fayetteville. "Last Year's Model" had better wrenches.. One thing Mr C had griped about was the set I purchased yesterday only had "6 Point" wrenches, and he says "12 point" are better. The one I exchanged for... for an overall savings of $90... has 12 point wrenches. Plus I didn't have to drive all the way to Fayetteville to do all of this.

Ben hadn't thought to bring along his whole tool box... so I had needed to come home and return it to the Siloam Sears. Ben opted to stay home. So while I was out and about- I got my hair cut.
I got some travel essentials for Tom and the boys... run run run!

We had chicken fried steaks for supper last night- with gravy, mashed taters, and a green bean casserole. Pretty funny Ben had been thinking Green Bean Casserole all day. We topped it off with home baked cheesecake... so his happy birthday cake was a day early.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The kids

Dan and Sam both signed up on facebook yesterday. This also required their getting email addresses. My kids are growing up.
On the other hand... my kids are also very silly. Or should I say "unique"?

Here are my kids names, and in random order, their chosen communication names. Want to try to put the right name to the right kids?

I have :
Chris
Bill
Becky
Ben
Tommy
Daniel
Sam

Their 'secret identity'(?) names, in random order:

Praytor
Executor
Zeratul
Judicator
Apophis
Cerebrit
Magistrate

******************
Yeah, I have interesting kids. The only reason they have chosen/ assigned different names to one another is for fun.
Tomorrow Benny is 21! I can hardly believe my middle child is grown up.
Tom and the twins are preparing to go to Ohio. I sure wish I was going... but I have such a great reason NOT to go... the imminent birth of the new grandbaby. Going to Ohio would put me a 23 hour drive away- where I am "only" 10 hours where I am. They leave Thursday and will be gone almost until my birthday.
I am trying to think of "what I want" for my birthday. (I already got a nice camera! It topped my list!) I am tempted to say a Kitten... but that would have to be from Mr C since he says no more "kittehs".

Anyway, the day is getting away from me, so I best say bye for now. Have a blessed day!

Monday, October 5, 2009

It's a cool, rainy Monday


The boys are working on their schoolwork and the latest project: Chain mail. Not the unfriendly, pass this letter on or you die type, the ARMOUR type.

I was very discouraging of this project. Look at how time consuming it is to hook all those little rings together... and that is using pre-made rings. They are making their own rings from wire. This will take them forever.

This is their result after just an hour or two. The rings are larger than I had imagined, so it is going more quickly than I had thought. With three of them working on this, they will have a chain mail vest in no time.

Benjamin is going to be 21 in just a few days... day after tomorrow, as a matter of fact. Tom heads for Ohio with the twins on Thursday. It will be just Ben and I at home. We are 'expecting' Becky to go into labor while Tom is in Ohio. I am ready to head her way in a matter of moments, once she tells me it is time. Tom and the boys will head to Becky's once they hear baby is here. (Or sooner, if Becky doesn't have the baby while they are in Ohio! Tom took two weeks off, which starts on the 8th).

I have a couple of errands to run today, so I suppose I should get off the internet and get on with them. Have a blessed day.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

pix




These were taken on Thursday

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Quick Trip...

I will be headed to FW bright and very early in the morning. Prayers for my son are requested. Not sure if I will stay at Mom's with Roger, or call and stay at Aunt Jean's yet. (Mom is going to East Oklahoma for the annual family reunion.) Please do uplift us in prayer tomorrow.
~T~

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

don't count your chickens...

I had to work this afternoon, setting up the latest of the 3 week long Oreilly sales. It usually takes me right at 2 hours to get a sale set up... once it took 2 1/2 hours. Today it took me a full 4 and a half hours, and that was rushing it. I had intended to be home to finish up the last minute supper items, like gravy. Ha ha. The best laid plans of mice and Moms. I called the boys and got them started on it.

Tomorrow's plans have already changed on me, but I have put off Daniel and Sam on the library for 2 days now, so I suppose we will still be going there.

Tomorrow is my younger brother Roger's birthday. Happy birthday to Roger! (Kids, give him a call in the afternoon after 3:30!)

I had not planned on going out today, having forgotten I had to work... but started out running when Mr C insisted I go to the insurance agent with Ben for his truck. The agent then recommended Ben wait until after his birthday next week to get a policy, it will save him a ton, and he is already covered in the new truck for 30 days. So it was a wasted trip, in that we didn't accomplish our goal. And without insurance, he can't register the truck... so there is yet another errand postponed.

Hope everyone had a great day.
~T~

Ben's new truck




Here is the proud new owner of a 2005 Ford F150. Just a week before his 21st birthday... Congratulations, Benjamin

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Yeah, again...

We went to see two houses this evening after I got off work. The first one was a 'real' house. It had a new roof and carport, and new carpet and paneling. Someone took some money and effort into making the place look nice.

The effects were lost on stepping out the back door, stumbling over the rotted wooden step and coming close to pitching into the open septic pit.
It was overgrown with weeds, full of water and mosquitoes.
Inside, had the owner bothered to MOP the vinyl flooring, it would have gone a long way to making me like the place. As it was, not so much.
The laundry hookups were in the bathroom, where I found a beautifully paneled box in the corner. This could only be the hot water heater. But... where is the access? how does one turn the hot water heater up, or down, or off? There was NO ACCESS. (We looked). In this beautifully paneled bathroom stood an old plywood vanity, with a very cracked, stained countertop, and a chipped, stained, blemished sink. Come on folks, you spend all that $$ on panelling and carpet, and you won't spend the $100 (or less) for new formica and a cheap sink?
This house had neighbors hard pressed on both sides. On the carport side was a yippy yappy dog that barked the entire time we were there. Pretty much crossed it off the list.

Our second house was a doublewide on 1.2 acres. In the woods. The neighbors are fairly close, but not "right there" as they are in the first house. (More like what we have here in this rental). It was less than half the asking price of the first house, and the place was HUGE. The SMALLEST of the 4 bedrooms was larger than the biggest bedroom here. The master bedroom was easily as large as the entire living room where we now live.
Carpet was burgundy, but at least it would match my curtains, LOL. This house was nestled into the woods. It has potential, due to the size and price. Also, no one has made an offer on it, and it has been vacant at LEAST since May. So, we might consider offering them less on it. We will see. I'm sure not getting my hopes up at this point!
*******************

At work, I finished resetting the 24 ft. section of the truck and towing plan-o-grams. It really did take me all weekend.
I think summer is shouting its last hurrah here today- it was close to 90*! The high tomorrow is only 70, and stays thereabout for the next week. The coming week brings my brother Roger's birthday! and my Mom's birthday. The 7th, Ben Jamin will be 21! TWENTY ONE! My middle child is going to be officially grown up. (Send him lots of cards, folks- email me if you need the address!)

Hope you have a blessed, wonderful day!
~T~