Friday, December 31, 2010

Phillip Andrew

This is the 26th anniversary of the night that I really acknowledged the loss of mine and Tom's first conceived child, Phillip Andrew.
We were so excited to be expecting a baby! "He" was named Phillip Andrew- months before any test would be able to determine a sex. We "just knew".

I was due July 16th. My best friend Angie, and another good friend Crystal  had also found out they were pregnant... we were all due the same day!
Such different results for each of us! (Crystal had Josh early... July 3rd or so... Angie had Michael 3 weeks late... in August. He was a whopper. 12 lbs. 14 oz!)

 Tom and I had gone to a Steve Taylor concert on a college campus in Dallas that night. I remember the beautiful pink and blue sunset clouds... all the while I was cramping. I had actually miscarried late in the night of the 29th, though I suspect the baby had been gone for some time. ( I had been having contractions for almost a week.)

I was new to "The Faith Movement". Tom kept telling me that if I only had enough faith, the baby would be OK. I just had to Believe It.
It was a sore trial to my faith when the bleeding started. 

We were at a laundromat doing laundry. I sent Tom next door to a 7-11 store for "pads". He came back with panty liners and was too embarassed to go back. Besides, there should only be spotting... I would not lose this baby, if I had enough faith.
There was so much blood, after we had gone to bed.  I got up, used towel after towel. Tom slept on. I had wanted him to wake up and HELP ME. Help me believe this was not happening. Help me shore up the deficit of my faith, which must be... since I could not see how a baby could survive so much blood loss.

Eventually, the bleeding slowed to almost nothing. I put the towels into the washing machine and soaked them in cold water. I went back to bed.

The next day, I tried calling our Pastors, and was never able to reach them. I needed answers... where had my faith gone wrong?
Tom and I were invited to a new years party at my Aunts house. It was the regular Bible Study night, and the group had wanted to see in the new year... 1985!

We got to Aunt Jean's house. Tom went into my cousin Mike's room and started playing video games. I had tried all day to think of a way to talk to him about our... MY... loss. Every mention of bleeding brought out a quick "Just have FAITH!" from him.
I was put to work in party preparation.... peeling vegetables and making dips. Setting out chips, arranging tables. When the evangelist who taught at the Bible study (Johnnie Lou) arrived... I took her aside. I needed to find out what I had done wrong.
How could I have had more faith? How could not speaking of losing the baby reverse what had happened? I needed answers.

It took Johnnie Lou very few minutes to see I was devastated, and the baby was gone.
She called Tom out and made him listen to me.

I cannot remember now if we stayed until midnight or not. Within a few days, a big snowstorm struck. Out playing in the snow with Tom and the boys... the cramping began again. I went to the bathroom and passed all that remained in my uterus... a fist sized clump of hardened tissue.

It took me several months before daring to try again to conceive. We did, though... and the baby that came was Rebekah Rene.

Had Phillip survived... Becky would not be Becky.

God has his plans... and his restorations. I went on to have four more sons after Becky.
It took me a very long time to realize it was no lack of faith on my part that kept Phillip Andrew from sticking in my womb. It was all God's divine appointment. He has His plans... and one day I believe I will meet Phillip.
At the time, it was one of the greatest losses of my life.

Our momentary grief is nothing in God's grand scheme of things. But our grief is none the less, grief. We mourn our losses.

And a new year dawns.

The best laid plans

Often have to be scrapped and re-invented!
The plan to go get the twins from Becky, meeting at my dad's this weekend.. has been scrapped. Daniel and Sam wanted to stay an extra few days, to see the new year in with a bonfire with friends. (They may have to scrap the bonfire if it is as windy there as it is HERE!)
Becky has also been allowing the boys to do some "real" driving on the property there. Here, they have been allowed to start the cars, and pull forward or back up, but not really drive anywhere. Stephen has been teaching Daniel to run a trapline.
We had pretty much figured to just roll the plans to meet over until next weekend.
But then the reality of January actually being TOMORROW hit.
I have to work the 3rd at an inventory in Rogers. Then the following Sunday (the 9th), my whole store has to show up at another store (mandatory-be-there-or-lose-your-job) for inventory of the main supply hub in our area. This is the same weekend Stephen had other plans for as well.
Since I am normally off on Sundays, I didn't even think of that inventory being only slightly more than a week away.... after all, it isn't until January 9th!
The great meet and retrieve the boys plan flexs and rolls with the new info. We will meet (somewhere!) on the  15th.... after I get off work. By then, the boys will have been gone an entire MONTH!

(They took their schoolwork with them. Homeschooling is wonderful! And the boys are pretty self-motivated. When they aren't, Becky is a good motivator.)

Perhaps you remember several weeks ago, Tom and I re-potted the big tree...
Treelets
and I rescued its "babies". The babies have begun to get roots, so I transplanted several of them into pots with soil today. Mr C came in for his lunch and asked what kind of plant did I have?
I told him it was the babies from the big tree. He asked if I was trying to turn the house into a forest!
I told him, no... but that I CAN give the babies away.

Maybe they will make nice house warming gifts for Ben and Tommy...  maybe I should take one down to Dad and Kathie... since the big tree actually came from Kathie's dad's house....

Maybe I can give one each to my Mom and Becky... and see who kills theirs first.

Right now, I think I may start my black-eyed peas... have them for supper today as well as for tomorrow. Perhaps I will even put the "recipe" on the cooking blog.
Have a blessed day!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

I have noticed....

I have noticed that if any two or more of my kids get together (those that are not normally together)... they sort of forget there are other people in the world.
Mr C was delighted to get phone calls from some of his kids on his birthday.... but one of those who called (without naming any names....) forgot to put her brothers on the phone. Mr C was sad.

Now, instead of getting a phone call, I get a blog comment- informing me that the brothers have unanimously decided to stay another week at Becky's. So, I guess they will find out from reading my blog, Dad said OK.
He is perfectly willing to stay home this weekend and watch football. Endless football. Game after game after game after game aftergameaftergame...

And since we aren't traveling this weekend... I stopped by the grocery store after work this morning to lay in some supplies. I got a small pork roast and one jar of sauerkraut. I already have a bag of blackeyed peas. Guess I ought to thaw some Blue and Gold Bacon to season the peas with. (We have been rationing the Blue and Gold. I am pretty sure I have one package of bacon left.)

Why yes, I DID say I was supposed to work all day today and tomorrow. But Boss decided things are too slow to require my presence there today... and reduced tomorrow to just working the morning.

I suppose, since I have a newfound day ahead of me, I ought to try to accomplish something around here. And I do need to CALL the Dad, who was expecting us this weekend! (He doesn't read my blog.)

Have a blessed day!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Early Bird

I was finished at work this morning before anyone else even arrived. I was home shortly after Tom left for work. Here by ten past seven.
Now I have had my second cup of tea, and decided NOT to go back to bed. Not yet anyway. (Still having problems with the sinus/teeth/  headache so going back to bed isn't entirely out of the question.)

Boss asked me to work Thursday and Friday, until I hit 8 hours each day, so it may be close to 4 pm before I get home. Other than coming home to let the dogs out on my lunch break, I could stay there all day. It is so quiet around here.

I suppose I should get a start on my New year's resolution: Walk a mnimum of 50 miles per month- shooting for 600 miles next year. Get a start now so I will be ready to do two miles a day right off the bat- as we will be gone on the first and second! I will have to make up miles right out of the gate.

2010 has been a nice "breather" year... no major events. No weddings, births, deaths, divorces. No new houses, cars, jobs. My "major events" were Ben moving out, and my 50th birthday. Both were pretty low key events. 2010 plodded along maintaining a status quo. That is perfectly fine with me!

I hope that you have all had good years,and are looking forward to 2011 with joy and anticipation. Have a blessed day!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Weekend!

Mr C and I got up early Saturday and drove down to my Dad's house in East Texas. We took the TSD with us, as we didn't have any other choice. Jaffa, as usual, enhanced the drama of our trip with his carsickess.
Repeatedly.

We arrived just past noon, and I helped my Moms (Mom Rose and Step-Mom Kathie) with the final bits of preparartion for the meal.
My SIL Ruby and brother Robbie were there from Tennessee, as well as my youngest brother Roger. There were no kids at all... which was really sort of sad. We were joined by my Dad and Kathie's friends Ellen and Arnie.

We sat around visiting after the meal was cleaned up. Got up Sunday, had breakfast, and visited awhile longer before heading down the road home. (This time with the TSD well drugged. No horking on the return trip!)

Not once in the time we were there did I think to take out my camera and take pictures. However.... I did think to look at Dad's road atlas... since we didn't bring ours along.
Every trip, we drive by a sign that says "OK Scenic Hwy 1". I wanted to see where it went.
I saw it intersected with a road we would eventually cross anyway... so Mr C agreed we could take the long way home!

We stayed on Hwy 271 out of Gilmer, up through Hugo and Antlers. What  beautiful stretches of road there are along 271 on both sides of Antlers!
I thought we had surely missed the turn-off for HWY 1 (we were approaching from the opposite end we normally see). Satisfied with the beauty of 271, we just continued towards home... and then there it was! The Hwy 1 turnoff.

I remembered I had the camera!


The white blaze in the middle of the hill is the road.
To fully appreciate the picture, stand in the freezer and turn a fan on "high".

The road continued climbing and winding- we drove along the ridge of the far mountain that appears ahead  as dark blue in this picture.
You can't fully appreciate the sheer majesty of the views through pictures. Just impossible. we WILL be taking this route again.
These are part of the Kiamichi  (Kie-uh-mee-chee) Mountains, a sub range of the Ouachita (Wah-shit-tah)  Mountains. Yes, Oklahoma has REAL mountains!

We saw where the Winding Stairs Trail crossed the highway, as well as the back packers camp. Daniel wants to someday hike the Appalachain Trail... so Tom and I are thinking this would be a good starter trail. We decided to try to hike it late this spring or early in the summer.

I would of enjoyed it much more if we had taken a picnic lunch... or any lunch at all... and had not had a sinus infection which is screaming through my teeth. High altitudes and blocked sinuses are a painful combination.

Have a wonderful afternoon!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Didn't I swear off Wal Mart until after the Holidays?

As usual, as the holidays approach, I am less and less inclined to shop at the WalMart Super Center, despite their superior prices.  Yet I have been there two days in the past week. Yesterday, I took the Toyota down to WM for new tires, as soon as I got off work. Amazingly (or perhaps not) I had four new tires and a hefty bill in under an hour. I was home ... all the way back to the house, by shortly after 10:00 am. TLE (Tire Lube Express) at WalMart was practically deserted. The entire store was far less crowded than I expected. There were shoppers... people pushing shopping carts with the dazed, glazed, empty expression of the clueless sent out to obtain meaningful gifts for everyone on their list. I can see why the "gift aisle" is popular.... pre-packaged thoughtfulness!

So, we got new tires on the car- going ahead and getting them this week, instead of next month, as we planned to pick up the twins this weekend at my Dad's, meeting Becky and Stephen there on Saturday. But the best laid plans... Becky and Stephen can't make it, we learned later yesterday afternoon. Tom decided we could go ahead to Dad's, since we were invited to a family dinner there.

Mr C's birthday is coming up... it's MONDAY if any of my dear procrastinating Children wish to rush right out and get him a card in the mail. I haven't made any elaborate plans...perhaps I can force him to go out for dinner. Best not hold my breath on THAT!

May you all have a very blessed week- Tell someone that you love them! (And MEAN it!)

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Weekend is almost over...

Since I get to count Monday as a day off!
Mr C has been sick all weekend, as well as most of Friday. Today, his cold (or whatever it is) seems to be trying to sneak up on me.
We had supper early, as the way I was feeling by the time we got back from town leads me to believe that cooking supper would NOT happen if I were to postpone it to our proper suppertime.

We went to town to get work boots for Mr C., as his shoes are becoming quite religious. (Holey). With the soles falling off his last pair of footwear, we had put off getting him shoes longer than prudent. So I dragged him off to The Shoe Dept.
The Shoe Dept. is across from WalMart... and Mr C tried on several pair while I wandered the store under the watchful eye of the manager, who seemed to follow me as if I were about to stuff something into my purse. (My purse with the broken strap... another purchase I need to make, but refuse to pay $10 or more for such an item! How someone can pay for a designer bag is just beyond me...)

Once Mr C had procured his footwear, we noticed that WalMart wasn't any more crowded than usual. (Probably owing to it being Monday, and noonish. Those who had $$ and weekends off hit the store yesterday and the day before... those who are still procrastinating their shopping will arrive in the late afternoon...)
So I got our short list of grocery and sundry items from the store I generally foreswear at this time of year. ( I even looked at purses, but didn't get one!)  WalMart may not have been the mad house anticipated at this time of year, but it was bad enough. Old home week... let's block aisles to chat with friends we haven't seen in nearly 24 hours! Let's sit in the floor so no one else can get to the products while we scrutinize the fine print on the organic coffees from Timbuktu. Let's block entire sections of the store with carts of merchandise awaiting put out, leaving NO access at all to the area! I finally got to the checkout and got my stuff organized on the belt, as the person ahead is checking out.
Get to the NyQuil (in Original Green Death Flavor). The register prompts the cashier to check my ID... "Is Customer 18 or older?"
The cashier is puzzled about what to do, keeps trying to scan the next items without responding. I finally tell her, she has to respond to the prompt... and YES I am over 18. She hit "NO/ Sale Cancelled". So she flagged down a manager... what does she do? The MANAGER didn't know... he flagged down a CSM. Even the CSM seemed perplexed. I finally intervened, as the line behind me built. "Clear the screen. Now, re-scan the item. Now tell it YES, I am over 18."
By the time we got home... head-cold wooziness was attacking me. I took a newly purchased dose of Emergence C, put away groceries, and fixed a late lunch/ early supper. Then I cleaned up the kitchen. I was ready to call it a day shortly after 5:00 pm. But that really IS too early to head to bed.

Did I mention Mr C has been sick all weekend? ARGH. I think God is working on teaching me patience. He refuses to take anything for feeling bad. But he moans continuously. I think he knows my patience has worn completely out. Or maybe it is because I am starting to fell bad myself. Anyway, I am quite crabby.

Have a blessed night. I am going to TAKE SOME DOPE here in a minute, and head off to bed at the crack of dark.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Down the drain... (or in the trash!)

I was trying to make a cow hand-puppet for my grandson. I had the higest hopes, the best vision of what it was to look like.
It was going to have a little pink udder, and a ribbon sewn around its neck with a cowbell attached.

The material shreds rather than sews, so it kept developing holes in it. The head wouldn't lay correctly, and its (perfect!) little ears ended up too close to its neck. In sewing the sides of the head to the pink insides of the mouth, I caught the main part of the body and narrowed it too much for my hand to fit inside. Turning it right side out... holes developed at the ends of the cows hands, along the sides of the head, and around the mouth... this material just shredded instead of  sewing together. I never got as far as sewing on the udder, the ridiculously long eyelashes I had got for its beady brown eyes.

Cow Hand Glove PuppetI ordered a cow puppet from Amazon instead. I had purchased materials to attempt an alligator/ dinosaur puppet as well, but I am just not up to it today. I hope the ordered puppet arrives in time... it is for my son's son, and he is unable to choose the gift this year.

This is similar to what I was AIMING for... but mine was to have the wide open mouth so it could "talk". (This is NOT the one I ordered... not even close to the one I ordered. I found this one later.)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Brief Ramble

Kimber and I at the Really Big Chair outside of "oops!"



Fajita Chicken Alfredo
I really have had a couple of lazy afternoons. I had a nap yesterday, and was awakened by a call from Mr C... letting me know he was working OverTime. This afternoon, I have put away yesterday's dishes from supper, washed the accumulated dishes from today, got a roast on to cook, and started a load of clothes. I also put up a recipe for Fajita Chicken Alfredo on our cooking blog.

I actually considered dragging out the sewing machine for a couple of small projects, but so far haven't mustered up enough gitty-up. I still need to address a couple of birthday cards... I "frogrot" to give Becky her card before she left, and tomorrow is her birthday. My "LG" will be 25!

Mr C is working overtime again tonight... that makes something like 3 times he has worked over since going back from vacation.

Well, that is all I can think of for now. Thanks for reading, Have a blessed day!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Generations

Kimber discovers suds

Ty and Kimber coming clean!
My Granny... she will be 96 in a few weeks.
My Aunt Jean and I. Everyone says I look just like her, but I'm a bit plumper.
A few more pictures from the last week!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Tyrel



Tyrel Quiets the Duck
It has been lots of fun having the kids here this past week. You never know WHAT Tyrel is going to say next. He had been playing with the stuffed duck, quacking loudly. He had been shushed several times... and tried to explain it was the DUCK, not Tyrel, making all the noise. A few minutes later, he came to show us that he was keeping the duck quiet, because Kimber was taking a nap. (The duck has several linking toy rings around its bill.)

The babies were a bit under the weather the last couple of days. Running a fever, coughing and snotty noses... and very restive last night. Mr C was up at his usual pre-dawn hours. Tyrel and the twins got up and joined him. I elected to stay in bed and TRY to sleep. Becky was staying in bed with Kimber, trying to grab a few more minutes of rest.

I hear Tyrel announce he is going potty.
Then he says, "I'm sitting on the potty now! Mom! Mom! Mom! Mom!.....  Are you getting up yet, Mom? Mom. Mom. Mom. MOM! ....... Are you getting up yet Mom?"
 (Thirty second pause)
"Mom. Mom. Are you getting up yet Mom?"..... ( another pause)...... "Mom! Are you getting up yet?"

Becky tiredly replies, "No.... I hadn't planned on it."

"Oh." says Tyrel, "I was just checking."

His favorite question is the same as most three year olds, "Why?"
It doesn't matter what he is told to do... the reply is "Why?"
He asks why after asking, and being informed of what you are doing.
And once you explain why you are doing whatever you are doing... he asks "Why?" again.
An explanation for your explanation is requested. Sometimes, though, he just says "Oh." and walks away, satisfied that you have answered his questions.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Random Shots and Busted Rears

Just a few random shots from the past week.
Kimber, wearing the dress Cowgranny made her!
Grumpaw and the Grandkids

Connor, Tyrel, Tom, and Alana

Alana, Tyrel, Rose, Tammy, and Connor
Becky is stranded here for awhile. The rear end went out on her pick-up truck, and getting parts for it has been a comedy   tragedy of errors. First of all, trying to get the parts the mechanic said we needed, we had to submit a "special order" to O'Reilly's. The info on the special order came back as "unavailable to purchase through O'Reilly's". So my boss called the mechanic... and had him dig into the rear end and see exactly the "gear ratio" that was needed, so that Boss could try to find a correct rear end. He requested Mechanic to look to his sources, while Boss looked to his. A call back from the Mechanic gave Boss exactly what part to order... one that COULD be had through usual channels at O'Reilly's... the same day! The order was placed.
Then., the local warehouse that "had" the part discovered, oops... they did NOT have the part after all.  So the part was ordered through the closest warehouse that had it... Oklahoma City. It would arrive by 11:30 the next day. At 1:30 the next day, we called O'Reilly's to see if the part had been delivered to the Mechanic. OOPS again... it was still on the shelf!
So the part was delivered hastily to the shop. The Mechanic was in the middle of finishing up a vehicle he DID have parts for, so Becky's truck was put off until Mechanic finished. THEN he got on Becky's truck and got it torn apart just before they closed.
Once he got to the point of putting the new part in this morning... he discovered that the NEW part was MISSING PIECES! VITAL pieces.... The parts requisition chase started again. New  New parts were ordered, and will be here in the morning.  But tomorrow is Saturday, and this shop takes weekends off. So.... Monday is the very earliest possible time to get the truck. Monday AFTERNOON.... and that is provided all goes well.
Becky's DH suggested Becky just plan to stay this entire next week.

Which means... LOTS more pictures! Yay!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Random funnies

When my oldest two boys were growing up,for some reason they called the very last bit of banana in the peel, "The POWER BITE". Once you ate the power bite, you had super power! They would run around like crazy.
The POWER BITE



Daniel showed me that he was eating "Annies Cheddar Bunnies". Bunnies are quick multipliers!
Two Bunnies


Boy are they fast!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Zoom!

December is racing by. I have really enjoyed getting to spend the day with Becky, the babies, and my Mom. In the morning, I abandon them and go back to work. Once I get home,w e plan to go to "oops!" so that Becky can get some candles. Hopefully, I can afford a few as well. ("oops!" is a candle factory outlet, and an import store that sells all sorts of interesting items. It is located in Tontitown, AR.)

Both Tyrel and Kimber have taken right up with "Umpaw", as usual. Kimber has allowed me to tote her around, but she has gone to Umpaw and climbed right into his lap... all her own idea. Seems Mr C is a natural with little ones! He may look crabby to everyone else, but little kids take right to him. Connor and Alana came out for supper, and played with their cousins for a little while. I took them home a bit early, as Alana wasn't feeling well. Connor was so sweet and patient with both of the little ones. He held his temper when Tyrel was trying to pound him, poke and kick him.

We made enchiladas for supper, and did a picture tutorial for the recipe blog. I hope we can get that up tomorrow! We used Becky's camera, and it takes NICE pictures.
Tomorrow, Becky may "frost" Grandma Rose's hair.  I can hardly wait to see how she looks. The box says it is "for Light Brown to Dark Brown Long Hair". At the moment, Grandma Rose has short grayish hair. I can't remember last time she had long hair, so it will be a real change!

I am up "late" for me (It is after 9:00 pm!) because Becky is taking a bath, and Tyrel didn't want to go to bed yet. Both "Umpaw" and I have to go to work in the morning... and even though I leave earlier, Mr C is always awake first. He is usually up by 4:00, sometimes earlier. I lounge around til 4:45... them dash out the door by 5:15. Umpaw went to bed half an hour ago. I was sure ready to go... but here I am!

The month is speeding by. The whole year has rushed by, it seems. The grandkids are all getting so big. Heck, even my KIDS are getting big! When we first moved in to this house, the twins didn't have to duck to shut the cabinet doors. Now, they don't need a step ladder to reach items on the top cabinet shelves.


Well, I see Ty has nodded off asleep on the couch, so I am headed to bed. Have a blessed week! Thanks for reading!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Saturday!

Today was an OK day at work. Not too long, but not a fast in-and-out either. Got home around 8:30. Did my treadmill, then got laundry going. I wore out in a hurry, and actually had to have a nap. I thought I had missed the Pampered chef party, but my friend called me shortly after my nap... I still had an hour until the party started.

I left a few minutes early... HOORAY for me! I was the LAST car through Centerton before the police closed off the highway and main drags for a Christmas Parade and festival. So glad to have missed THAT delay. Kind of scared me when two police cars pulled out behind me with blue lights flashing... until I realized they were closing the road, NOT pulling me over.

The Pampered chef lady made skillet lasagna... the same dish she made at my party a couple of years ago. Since she has pretty much had our same group every two or three months for the last four years or so, we all know one another fairly well, and have tried pretty much every dish in her party repertoire. My friend Cindi made chicken and dumplings, as well as cookies. I came home too full to try the Chineasy Chicken Daniel made while I was gone.

I really just ordered some cinnamon for myself, and a bowl set my mom had wanted (after me bragging about mine!) I got to visit with old friends, and make a couple of new ones. One of the people was a younger Mom of five, who has kids from 14 down to 8. She has home schooled for several years, although her kids are currently in PS. We had a lot in common. I miss my old acquaintances at Eagle, but do not miss the boss there! The worst part of the party was coming home reeking of cigarette smoke... even though I stayed inside and all the smokers went OUTside.

The housework ended before my nap, so I will be cleaning tomorrow.  (Note I said "ended", NOT was finished....) Most of the laundry is done... including ANOTHER (YES! ANOTHER! GRRR!!!!!!! ) Re- Wash of blankets the dogs burrowed into ...because SOMEONE didn't put them away. (This was a load of  "reds", including my Ohio State blanket, Ohio State snuggie, Pajamas, and the twins flannel red bedsheets.)

Well, even though I have had a nap, it is well past my bedtime. I can hardly keep my eyes open. Please pray for safe travels for Becky and My mom tomorrow. Have a blessed night!

~Tammy~

Friday, December 3, 2010

Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood

It is a sunny, slightly on the cool side, afternoon. Colder weather is supposed to hit tonight, and stick around all week. (Mom and Becky, bring warm clothes!) My work week is almost over... tomorrow is "Friday"... I am usually done well before 8 in the morning.

We will probably spend the rest of Saturday getting things ready for Mom and Becky's visit. While we looked pretty good for Thanksgiving, I have really slacked off of things in the week since. I haven't peeked into the boys bathroom... I am sure it is in NEED.

I got back on the treadmill this afternoon... having only walked about once a week in the last five weeks. I need to get back on it every day... I was worn out after half a mile.
Oh, I must remember! Tomorrow I am invited to a Pampered Chef Party. If you need anything from them, be sure and give me a call tonight. (I am notorious for forgetting something like this until after it is over, even when I fully intend to attend!)

Jenna, since Becky and Gma Rose will be here the early part of this coming week, I'd like to have Connor and Alana come out after school and visit for a few hours, either Monday or Tuesday, if they don't already have plans. I can get them home before bedtime!

That's all I can think of for today. Have a blessed evening!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Night Sky

On my way to work this morning, I was admiring bright Venus appearing in close proximity to the sliver of Moon in the Eastern sky. It was crisp, cold, and brilliant as I drove to work. I caught, from the corner of my eye, what appeared to be a long, comet-like streak leading directly to Venus. I had to stop and look. Yep, there was a streak in the sky pointing directly at the star. (Yes, I KNOW it is a planet!)

As I drove on to work, the long arrow-like streak moved, until it was underlining the crescent of Moon. The streak was a band of clouds caught in a high jet-stream. It was so beautiful... I wish I could of taken a picture to share. But not only does my camera NOT take night-sky pictures... a picture just doesn't do justice to the grandeur.

The stars and Moon (and PLANETS!) are one reason I love going in to work so early.

Another reason I like working in the early morning is that I can get so much more done before I have the distractions of co-workers ad customers. (Customers are the REASON we are in business, but it is sure difficult to attend to the necessary tasks that have to be taken care of to stay in business, when you are serving a customer.) A third bonus to working early: I have energy to get things done. By noon... I'm what is done. I have been yawning my head off since noon... but so far haven't given up and taken a nap.
******************

December marks the start of our main birthday month of the year. Tomorrow is Tom's sister Teeny's birthday. The 7th is granddaughter Jade's, and my Uncle Doug's. The 8th is my sister Lalani's birthday, as well as another relative who wishes to remain anonymous. The 9th is this relative's daughter's birthday. The 12th is my eldest son Christopher's birthday, followed by my daughter's on the 16th. Close friend Angie was born Dec. 18th. My nephew Jeremy has his birthday on the 22nd, and my twin cousins Douglas and Daniel on the 24th. DH Tom's birthday is the 27th... which is the last December birthday for us, but my Granny's is Jan 3rd. So a very busy birthday month ahead.

Daniel and Sam are looking forward to going to their sister's house for a visit. When she leaves here, they will accompany her. This will be their first visit to her house all year... possibly in closer to two years. They are pretty geeked over it. (Oh bad word choice... these two are GEEKED over everything, all the time. They are perpetual geeks.) They have been making their lists and checking them... hmmm... hourly. Not lists of clothes and stuff... those kinds of lists are for girls. (I will be lucky if they remember to pack clothes at all.) They have lists of must-not-be-forgotten items like paintball guns, masks, cloaks, staffs, and games. As they promised to also do school work if allowed to go, they better be adding THAT to their lists!

Well, it is either time for another cup of tea, or a nap. Have a blessed afternoon!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Introducing: Our Cooking Blog!

While still very rudimentary, The Cow Crew is pleased to announce the launch of our new cooking blog. Inspired by Becky, it will be a collaborative effort from all the "chefs" in our family.
"Cooking with the Cow Crew"

I am not sure how to work all the links yet, but will try to classify them and add a search engine to the blog as it becomes necessary. I have tried to make permanent links to the Pantry, as well as the "Meet the Cooks" posts. So far, I have just one recipe up, the Oven-Fried spicy chicken (Original Blog titled here: "In which I Channel the Pioneer Woman")
**************
 In Other News:
Yesterday was Mr C's first day back to work. He worked overtime!
Then, got up at 3 am with a fever and severe headache... so had to report in sick today.
He has begun to feel better, and is now gone to the storage locker to return some items we had need of over the last week or so.
***********
 I worked a bit extra today... not even past a normal time, but for at least an hour after my job was "done". We are less than 2 weeks from the wall to wall inventory of our store. Many areas of disarray remain. I cleared two of them this morning.
**********
My treadmill is now back in its useful location. It has been in the laundry room stacked with stuff for a week or so. I am going to have to get back on it soon! Since going to Ohio in October, I have probably only logged 25 miles on my walking. I need a new goal... I'm letting myself fall off again.
***********
I am looking forward to seeing Becky and the kids next week, and, I hope my Mom as well. Sam asked how they were getting back from Texas... and Tom says he will likely be driving down to get them. (They needed to know their return plans, so they would be able to pack - or not pack- their paintball guns and knives and other boyish essentials). (The sewing stuff dragged out yesterday continues to litter the table... no actions taken. Awaiting size info from Becky!)
***
Well, that is all for today. thanks for reading!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Vacation is over...

Being a "StayCation" instead of a vacation, it seemed to last much longer than when we go someplace. The boys tried to keep up with their lessons, but it is hard to do with Mr C here. Both Dan and Sam seem to study better while listening to music, so I let them. (They wear headphones.) Mr C doesn't feel that they are devoting enough brain to learning, if part of the brain is listening to music. (When Mr C listens to music, it is an exclusive activity. He devotes 100% of his brain to listening to the music. For me, music is a background activity.)

We now have all the bedding rewashed from our company.  Why yes, it WAS all washed just prior to their visit. However, between dogs making themselves at home, and the boys just tossing EVERYTHING into the laundry, instead of just sheets... ALL the bedding got rewashed. (Just in time for Mom and Becky to come NEXT week. At least they will know everything is really, really clean, as it went into bags as soon as it came from the dryer!)

Tomorrow is back to work for both Tom and I. He will dread it most, since he has been off since the11th. I should have a "regular" work day, though if I am offered to stay and help get the store prepped for our inventory on the 13th, I will do it. (My regular work days usually have me home by 9:30 at the latest).

I dragged out all my sewing stuff today; the fabrics, patterns, accoutrements. Then I decided I was just NOT up to starting a new sewing project at the moment. I want to start with a little vest for Ty, since Glynna didn't really like any of the patterns I had to choose from for little girl dresses. I don't want to waste my time on something that isn't going to get worn because it is "dowdy". I have some cow patterned material, it will make a perfect "Woody" vest. I just need to make a pattern for it... and vests are fairly easy to pattern. I wish I could find the black and white striped binding (bias tape would work if I could only find it in striped!) like Woody has on his vest. I can even sew a little gold fabric star to it for a sheriff's badge. (And wouldn't a pair of chaps to go with it be CUTE!... but I have no clue how to make chaps!)

So I just wandered off and left my sewing stuff on the table. I know if I don't start a project EARLY in the day, I just don't get it going at all. All my giddy-up is gone before 2 pm. (I DO get up early, though.) Perhaps I will get with the program tomorrow!

I dragged out photo albums while Connor and Alana were here. Alana especially seemed to enjoy looking at the pictures of her Uncles and Daddy when they were little. Gosh, it doesn't seem like all that long ago when my "grown" kids were babies! I had several stories to tell Glynna... she had never heard about the time Bill tried to walk on water with "floaties" on his feet... or the time he leaped from a barn roof with a tarp duct taped to his wrists and ankles, hoping to glide to the ground like a flying squirrel. (Neither attempt was met with success!) Alana was so gullible, it was a shame to tease her. A picture of her Daddy, with a cake that had "12" on it in front of him. She asked, "Is daddy 12 in this picture?" I said no, it is his one-half birthday. he was between one and two years old. "Oh." she says. Seeing as how she was believing that this picture of a semi-grown kid is really between one and two years old, I had to tell her YES, he was 12. I told Tom I couldn't believe she was this gullible. (He said "Goat's milk and eggs!")

Of course, I remember gullible. I was the kid whose Mommy and Daddy said they didn't know whether I was a boy or a girl, at first, since they had to get the hairy little monkey from the chandelier to check. Man... I had had two kids of my own before I realized there are no chandeliers in delivery rooms. I also believed Mom when I asked her how do you tell a boy baby from a girl baby?... and she said, You check their booties. Boy babies have blue booties, girl babies have pink booties. (Sex Ed, 1968)

Well, I hope you have a blessed evening. Mr C has come to claim his turn on the computer!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Quieting down...

Bill and Glynna, Ben, and Nickole are on their way back to Duncan. We had a great Thanksgiving. Today is the National Holiday of Ohio State Vs. Michigan. (Ohio won handily.)

Still having Connor and Alana, and all of us kind of tired of poultry... we grabbed some Papa Murphy's Pizza fo supper tonight. Dan thinks the one stuffed crust 5-meat  pizza will be enough. But I also got a "Bacon, Bacon, and Bacon" pizza. (I know Chris would love this one, if he were here to share with us!) The kids are all playing "Risk"
Mr C continues the watching of football. he told Alana and Connor, when they dared ask if they could play video games on Ben's Wii during the Ohio State game... that they can never be real men until they accept that one must watch College Football every Saturday in the Fall. (Of course, Alana will never aspire to be a "real man", but she is getting used to the idea that this is what guys tend to DO, so she may as well get used to it.)

Of all my kids, only Chris and Bill have been die hard College Football fans. The rest of the kids take after Mom, and find "other persuits".

It doesn't look like Becky will be coming up for her visit until after the 4th, as Stephen has a Concealed Carry class that day. I am hoping to go down to Texas on the 10th or 11th, but have to be back for my O'Reilly's inventory on the 13th. I don't yet know if I will get to go or not.

With " Non-denominational Capitalist, Wintertime Gift-giving Season" hard upon us, let me ask you to think of me if you shop Amazon! Please, please, please! link to them through my blog! I have half a dozen or more birthdays coming up in December, so if I can get some $$ together, I will shop there.

I will have more pictures of kids and Grandkids up at Moocrew2 in just awhile, please check them out!
Have a blessed afternoon!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving...

http://www/.I am Thankful that my boys made it safely from Duncan, OK in the wee hours this morning.  I woke up hearing Glynna yelling for Bill to bring her shampoo, soap, and towels. Seems Nickole may of gotten a wee bit carsick on their drive over. Or maybe a lot of bit.

Freezing rain, sleet and a sprinkling of snow has been coming down most of the day, with temperatures hovering in the upper 20*'s. However, the house was warm VERY warm. In fact, I had to open a window to let in the breeze, as it hit over 90* in the kitchen.

I put the 23 1/2 lb. turkey into the oven at 7:30, expecting it to cook in about 6 hours at 225*. It was done by 10:30. So it came out, and we got other goodies ready to go into the oven. I waited until closer to noon to start the remaining items.

Alana wore her fauncy fluff trimmed Non-denominational Capitalist, Wintertime Gift-giving Season dress.
The rest of us just wore our regular clothes. I have some pictures up at Moocrew. I don't have ANY of Nickole in this batch. she slept all morning, got up and ate, and went back to bed. maybe when she gets up next time, I will have some pictures to add.

Dan and I are worn out rfom the massive cooking and clan-up. It is Sam's turn on the kitchen, but I'm not so mean as to leave the entire clean up to him. Not that he has hit a lick at a snake yet... I did most of the clean up. Sam disappeared. Tom is in now, finishing up. The boys can't even seem to put the lid on the cool whip and return it to the fridge when finished.

Well, I hope you have had a blessed and happy holiday, surrounded by those you love!

Monday, November 22, 2010

In Which I Channel Pioneer Woman...

Oven "Fried" Jalepeno Chicken Tenders



I made this one other time before tonight, and it went over pretty well, considering my guys don't like "sweet" meat. You need thawed boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Jalepeno Jelly, "Panko" bread crumbs, and cooking oil spray.


Start with slicing your thawed chicken breasts into "planks". Here is a picture of the "Panko" Japanese style bread crumbs. Last time we used Kikkoman brand, and liked them better.



 Melt some Jalapeno jelly in the microwave. This takes about 30 seconds. I melt mine in a bowl to avoid contaminating the jar of jelly with raw chicken.
Next, brush the planks of raw chicken with the melted jelly. It is easiest to brush one side on the cutting board, then place the plank jelly side down into the bowl of bread crumbs. THEN brush the jelly onto the other side of the chicken, and coat it in crumbs.








Place the coated chicken into a greased  (lightly sprayed with cooking oil spray ) pan. (I prefer the stoneware bakeware because it gives a cripser crust.)


Once in the pan, give them all a quick, light spray of cooking oil spray.


 Bake at 325* for 30-40 minutes, turning once and giving another light spray after turning.
Test for doneness but cutting into the thickest point of the largest piece. Juices should run clear.


I forgot to take a picture fresh from the oven, before the ravenous hordes descended on it.


Finally finished!

Here is the little dress I made for Kimber, finished at last.


I don't know if you can see the zipper or not.

This is the first baby dress I have made since BECKY was a baby. Since my machine broke down back in May, it is some six months behind schedule in being finished. I just hope it still fits her! After trimming the arm holes with the bias tape, I decided it would be pretty hemmed in the blue bias tape.
Looking forward to Becky and the kids coming next week so I can try it on the Kimber.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Squeaky, squeaky

CLEAN.

Yesterday, I got some "Orange Glo" wood floor cleaner. The Murphy's Oil Soap left a dull residue on the floors. So, again this week, we diassembled the front room and laundry rooms, and cleaned. The floors were re-mopped with the Orange Glo. It left a nice shine. The treadmill was moved to the laundry room. (Yeah, like we needed another major piece of furniture in there!) The extensions were added to the dining room table. The living room was completely re-arranged, for the first time since Tommy moved away- which was more than 2 years ago.

We noticed a really BAD, sulphery smell coming from my big tree behind the TV. So Tom took me to Lowes, where we got it a new, larger pot, and fresh soil. The tree was uprooted outside, and the old soil washed from its roots. We put several chunks of charcoal into the new pot, before adding the tree and fresh soil.  We had a crowd for the grand re-potting... all four of the little neighbor kids came over. (Yep, they are back. Great Grandpa rescued the ne'er do well Grandson again.) Tom yanked off some of the tree sprouts, which I insisted on saving. The tree's older offspring was also repotted to a bigger pot. The rest of the plants went into the shower for a good rinsing and drink. The porch got a short neatening up.

Tomorrow, I will work on my room and the bathrooms. Those are the only rooms left in the house we haven't had undone in the last couple of weeks. Maybe we will do those rooms... maybe we will go get the library out of the way.


I did remember to put the turkey into the fridge this morning, to begin to thaw.  I can't think of anything else to do to start getting ready for Thursday, that we can do this early.

Well Hope you have a blessed afternoon!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Grocery Shopping

Today, we had the Thanksgiving grocery list to finish buying for, as well as our regular food for the next week. (OK, so it won't last a week: I still have two teen boys at home... and the grandkids will be here.)
Tom and I went out as soon as I got home from work, to the Dollar General Store. We had a coupon for $5 off a minimum $25 purchase. Simple enough! We were able to get quite a bit of the items on the Thanksgiving list. I discovered I could get Lipton Onion Soup Mix there, for less than the Wal Mart Brand is at WM! Dollar General may become a regular GROCERY stop for us! Tom "needed to" get back home right away for the Football Pre-Game stuff... so we came back and put away our purchases. Daniel and Sam and I then headed out to Siloam Springs.

Our first stop was the new Aldi's store. It was my first time in this Aldi's. One of the boys expressed it pretty well... it was a discount grocery store trying to look like an upscale market. We were first stymied by the grocery carts. They were locked up outside. There were NO carts inside. We watched, and saw someone wrangle a cart loose from those chained together outside. Dan went back out to investiagte. You had to "rent" these carts! Of course, I had no quarter in my purse, and Dan had to come back in and get the car keys to get a quarter from the car's console.

We had a cart.... and trudged through the store. The first whole aisle netted us a box of off-brand wheat-thins type crackers. The second aisle, we found some list items: fruit cocktail and mandarin oranges for the fruit salad. We also got a few cans of peas, and a can of cranberry sauce. In the dairy section, we tried a gourmet cheese: Gouda with Pesto. (It tastes like my breadsticks, was Sam's decision after we tried it... I have to agree.)  We found a couple of interesting sounding salad dressings to use as marinades, on the discount aisle. Chicken was less than WM... so we got some. They were OUT of turkeys, so whether those would of been a bargain or not is unknown. There were NO bags, except those re-usable cloth bags... very pricey! Our purchases were piled as best we could into the trunk. My opinion of Aldi was , for what we needed, the Save A Lot down the street would of been a better choice.

From Aldi's, we crossed the road to WalMart. It was beginning to be prime time there... yikes. We finished getting everything on our list. As expected, we even found 3/4 a basketful of stuff NOT on the list that we wanted to need. (I found (L.A.) AWESOME refills in a half gallon size for $2! We have only ever found (LA) AWESOME at Dollar Tree.) I am sincerely thinking, we are now done with WalMart until after Christmas. Any groceries we have to have are going to be the local grocery store, or the Dollar General. (We just do NOT do WalMart between Thanksgiving and New Years). (We also bought a new laundry basket to help corral the Aldi purchases.)

I got two "crafty" type canvas aprons. One each for Connor and Alana. They will be here either Tuesday evening, or Wednesday morning, until Friday night or Saturday. (Let me know your preferences, Jenna!) I figure, to help keep them involved, and less bored, they will each make a "cookbook", and decorate an apron. I will endeavor to remember to take pictures of them cooking, and they can later add these to their recipe books. (I will either use folders or  looseleaf binders as the "book".) Each can have their own, and we will choose recipes to go in them. I really want them to have GOOD memories of times spent with their grandparents!

I am planning to put Bill and Glynna, with Nickole, into Sam's room. We have a  queen air mattress they can sleep on, and a portable baby pen Nickole can bed down in. They will have some privacy, and be able to relax a bit more in there. Ben will get his old room, with Dan and Sam tripling up with him. Connor and Alana will either sleep on the second queen air bed in the laundry room, or else Connor on a twin mattress in the laundry room and Alana on the couch. I separated them last time, and both seemed to have really fretted. I am figuring Dan and Sam will decide they have had too much "family togetherness" and decide they are camping out in the van, LOL. Last time, Connor joined them. They didn't prepare well enough that time, and Connor got cold. (He did NOT, however, come inside!)

I guess, except for the cleaning and mopping remaining, we are all set for next week. I only have TUESDAY to work, and then I am off until next Saturday. Saturday's are usually not worth my time going in. By not "rushing", I dragged out 2 hours today... clocking out at 7:30 am. So this next week will be like a family "vacation" get together.... except more work than "Work". (Besides Thanksgiving Dinner, I have had to think of meals the grandkids will actually eat, breakfasts for Thanksgiving Day and the days following, and how to feed leftovers to company! "Necessary" paper has been laid in... extra supplies of coffee and teas... having "company"... even family, does take some effort.

That said, this is pretty much the fewest people we have EVER had for Thanksgiving.... in 26 years of marriage and 27 Thanksgivings together. Only a count of 10 to be here.

Well, I am looking forward to it. I hope everyone has a wonderful blessed week. Tell someone how much you love them!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Our Thanksgiving Menu

We had a short discussion on the meal next week. It will be fairly simple:
Turkey & Stuffing
 Mashed Potatoes and Gravy
Sweet Potatoes
 Green Bean Casserole
Fruit Salad (Regular and frozen)
Grandma Ruby's Hot Rolls
Veggie Tray
Pies
**************
 We decided to try an Apple and Pear pie. We will also have Pumpkin Pie, and Pecan Pie. So far no one has told me of any special pie they would like. And for 10 people, 3 pies may be adequate. I really want another of the Sweet Potato Pie I made last year from Chris Jordan's recipe. So we may have four pies... more if I get word from my visiting family.

Tonite, we had stroganoff. Sam gave me permission to add the "secret ingredient" (sour cream) to the entire pan, instead of  just my own helping. He wanted to see if it really did make it better. Mr C observed Sam licking his plate... so I guess it met his approval.

We had Library today. Then the boys went ice skating at the Jones Center. (Which I have called The Simmons Center half a dozen times recently. The Simmons Center is in Duncan, and is not on such a grand scale as the Jones Center.) I walked while the boys skated. I gave my walking score credit for 2 miles, though I probably went farther. I walked at a good clip for 40 minutes.

Oh, I was almost  in a wreck yesterday! I was being followed at a good distance by a pick-up truck, from just outside of Gentry. (Well, not really followed, he just happened to be going the same direction!) Over the miles, he continued to gain on me. At the last stop sign at the intersection about a mile from the house, I put on my signal and come to my full and complete stop. The guys brakes locked up and he SKREEEEEEEEEEeed around the end of my vehicle. I guess he is unaccustomed to people actually STOPPING at stop signs, rather than just slowing down enough to make the corner. As I continued my turn, he peeled out straight ahead and went barrelling down the road, which turned to gravel once one goes past the stop sign. I can only suppose he was cursing ME for legally stopping.

Thank You, Lord, for your protection!
May each of you have a blessed and wonderful day!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Home Alone...

Because Tom and The Twins are out fishing. It is cloudy/overcast, and has reached the projected high of 54* for the day. The antibiotic I am on (for the inflamed cyst) warns me to be careful out of doors, as a side effect is extreme sensitivity to the sun.

I went to the "second largest inventory" of all the stores in our district Monday. The store was amazingly well organized, and we were done shortly after 6:00pm. It was a 40 mile drive... but I get mileage. The next inventory is not until Dec. 13th, and that is MY store. (Boss already said NO, we do NOT get mileage to our own store.) I worked a solid 8 hours on our store yesterday, trying to get it at least half as good as the one on Monday. It has far to go, but what we (me and my minions) did yesterday looks GREAT.

On the way to Fayetteville, I stopped in at Hobby Lobby and got the bias tape I needed to work on Kimber's dress. I handed the cashier my money. It was a $10 bill. She handed me back the change, all as a lump. So many cashiers do this! (Pet peeve... not counting back change!) I was stuffing it into my jeans pocket, when I realized, just as I was out the door... she had given me TWO fives and the three ones. Initial reaction : "SCORE! I got free bias tape AND more money than I had when I came in here!"
And then, the voice I listen to says: "You know if you keep that money, it is going to bug you forever. You know how upset YOU get when your cash drawer comes up short."

So I did an about face, and went back to the cashier. I said she had inadvertently handed me an extra five. I could tell by the look on her face that she was relieved that I had returned it. And I don't have to feel guilty forever!

I never did get the bathroom cleaned up Monday. We got a call from Becky that she has had to postpone her trip up here for a couple more weeks. So the "urgency" of cleaning the bathroom was gone. (The main thing is the bathtub has shower residue that has to go before a baby toddler can have a bath.)

I used part of the half and half I bought (for making the Alfredo), last night to make a delicious recipe:
Spaghetti Squash with Roasted Red Peppers . (Read the comments of the recipe for my modifications.) I took out Tom's serving before adding the sauce, and he said it was delicious even without the heavy Alfredo.

"Truth" has some awesome recipes on her food blog, and a great many of hers are gluten free.

So I am a week out from Thanksgiving. The house is clean, and I have a turkey in the freezer. I have a couple of packages of boxed stuffing, and a couple of sweet potatoes. (The sweet taters may get used this week.) I have four pie crusts (Dan is wanting to make English pasties with them, so I am having to guard them!) (He uses the Redwall Cookbook, not Rachael Ray's recipe, except for the pie crust.)

I have the makings for green bean casserole. I have potatoes. Still need stuff for fruit salad... and I will have to get more whipped topping, as that is as popular as the pies.

Speaking of pies... What kinds of pies shall I make? Glynna, Bill, Ben ... what are your favorites?)  I figure: Pumpkin, Sweet Potato, Apple, and Pecan. If you like Lemon or Cherry, better let me know ASAP!

I have chicken (yet again) set out to thaw for supper. Not sure how I will torment it this time. (Tom calls anything other than straight grilled or fried chicken, "tormenting" it)

Have a blessed day!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Mid-November

Already mid-November. Today will be my second inventory trip with my boss. This time in Fayetteville, some 40 miles south of here. The boys and I are slogging away on getting the house ready for the grandkids to be here.We have all been putting out little "hot spots" where junk piles up. I keep thinking of the floors being clean enough to crawl on... but I forget that Kimber is now toddling.

I have really fallen off on my walking every day. I forced myself to walk today, because if I didn't I'm sure I would of just quit, as I had already skipped the three days prior.

We planned a few dinners for our "company": Fajita Chicken  Alfredo, No-Longer Leesa's Enchiladas, and Beef Stroganoff.

I almost have the laundry caught up! But I got up pitching a queen sized fit this morning. When I came into the living room, I discovered that the freshly washed (last night) comforters did NOT get folded and put away.  So Jaffa had helped himself. He dragged it off the couch and wormed himself into a nest, sealing the sides around him... directly in front of the heater. This is one cold natured dog!

I shook him out of the comforter, with suitable sounds of ire. I tossed him "his" blanket... a little fleece blanket we got "free" in the mail, for a donation. He looked sadly at the comforter I had put back on the couch. I said, "Don't even THINK about it!"
I swear, like a kid... Jaffa gives a heavy sigh, a reproachful look at me, and took "his" blanket. In his covering himself, "his" blanket doesn't cover his tail end. Poor puppy. He settled back down, again in front of the heater.

Anyway, I am down to one load waiting to be washed, despite the dog adding the comforter back to the laundry.  It should all be done before I head off to Fayetteville. Pretty much all there is left to do is the back bathroom and the floors. I can't get to the back bath right now, as Mr C is having some quiet time in his room. The entire house cleaned, and two full weeks of Mr C's vacation still to get through.

It was funny yesterday, as I mentioned, that it crossed my mind and Tom's as well, that we were preparing to move. Moving generates this kind of deep cleaning. I have set aside another box of grade school readers for Becky, and the twins got outgrown clothes sacked and ready to donate.

Well, Quiet time is over. I better get on that bathroom!

Have a blessed day.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Must be getting ready to move...

I had that thought yesterday, and again today. We "Deep Cleaned" the laundry room yesterday... moving the fridge, freezer, washer, dryer, dresser, desk, and toolbox. Baseboards were scrubbed, floors swept and mopped. Mr C finished up in there today, folding and putting away his clothes, and designating a whole bag full of T-Shirts as "rags". The laundry room is refilled with laundry today, as we tackled Sam's room. Pretty much same scenario, different furniture. I found NO LESS than eight spoons, and two forks in there. It got so ridiculous, the boys took to not telling me when they ran across another spoon. (I think the great spoon famine is over!)

 Sam's room is VERY, VERY clean. The curtains are in the washing machine, along with his fitted sheet. Many blankets and loads of clothes remain. The scent of testosterone and dog is gone from his room, though the laundry piles still reeks. I suppose we will tackle Dan's room next weekend... tomorrow will be putting the rest of the house back in to some semblance of order, as my Mom, and my Daughter, and two of the grandkids will be here tomorrow night. (Hey Becky, you will get to sleep in Sam's room!)

My daughter cleans like I do. We gut a room... everything out and piled into one or more heaps... then clean the vacated area, sort through the heaps, putting things back into place as we diminish the piles. Not sure if I learned this technique from my Mom or not. I do remember when she said "Clean your room", most of the time we could get away with stuffing everything under the bed, or into the closet. But not always. That is why Sam's room was such a mess... too long since I "helped" clean it.

We had actually started on Dan's room  (Ben's old room, which he shared briefly with my eldest for about a month, over a year ago) earlier this last week. We didn't finish it, but decided Sam's room was where Becky would stay, so it was more important to finish today. In Dan's room... I found (leftover from my eldest's stay 14 months ago...) 3 empty cigarette packages, an empty asthma inhaler, a handful of loose change, four  half empty water bottles... and a small stack of junk mail.

For FOURTEEN MONTHS these things have lurked in the bedroom, through Ben moving out in June, Dan taking over the room. They left it because "It is my brothers and I didn't know what to do with it." Come on... you can't figure out an empty cigarette package is TRASH?

Well, I had some more to rant on about, but I have been informed that I have to share the computer. Have a blessed evening!

Friday, November 12, 2010

On Order...

My #4 son, Tommy, who has requested I update my blog.
Here you go, Tommy.

Yesterday, I was feeling a bit "punky". One of my ... ahem... "girls" had developed some inflammation. I called and made an appointment right away. Doc took a look today, and decided to agree with me: an infected cyst. I had figured cyst instead of duct, as well, I know the symptoms of mastitis and this isn't it.

So I am on a high dosage of antibiotics, and should see improvement by Monday. Followup the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving for us will be here this year. Mr C says we are not going anywhere. Today is the second day of his vacation... which stretches interminably ahead, and he is already bored to bits. So far, we have Ben, and Bill Joe (with Glynna and Nickole), Connor and Alana... for our big day.

Happy Birthday (Saturday) to my DIL Glynna.

Dan and Sam got their "cloaks" finished. To me... these cloaks look like hemmed rectangles of black fabric. I expected them to want something more... garment-like. I got busy on the neglected baby dress for Kimber Ann. I got the yoke stitched down, and installed the zipper! (My very first zipper, EVER!!!) The next step calls for bias taping the armholes. WHAT? Bias tape... how did I miss seeing I needed bias tape?  So Bias tape is on my list... and though I checked at WalMart today... they no longer carry it. It went out when they disposed of their fabric department. So, the little dress is further delayed. (I really didn't feel much like doing anything today.)

For supper tonight, we cooked up a knock-off of P F Changs lettuce wraps. I used ground turkey, fresh cabbage, green peppers, leeks, and water chestnuts. We fried up the "Maifun Rice Sticks", which go "whoosh!" as soon as they hit the hot oil, and pretty much fill the pan instantly. I had Dan make some jasmine rice. Then we made wraps of the lettuce leaves... a scoop of the turkey/ veggie mixture, a dollop of rice, and a sprinkle of the fried noodles. Tasty!

I just learned that my DD Becky is planning to come for a few days this next week! YAY!!! (I hope I can finish the dress before she arrives, but it doesn't look promising. Monday, I go to an O'Reilly's in Fayetteville to work inventory there.

Tom and I discussed the fact that, although Dan and Sam took over Ben's room when he moved out, so they could each have their "own" bedroom... they continue to sleep in the same room, whichever of the rooms they choose to sleep in. I said I would like to dismantle one of the captains bunks and use that room for the treadmill, set up my sewing machine, and have it for guests when necessary. Tom thought it should be set up as a "proper classroom". The boys were none too keen on ANY of our ideas.

Nevertheless, we set to work trying to get their sleeping arrangements in one room, and a classroom/ media room/ sewing room in the other. We made a colossal mess... and decided to just leave things mostly as they were... moving only a computer from one bedroom to the other. We jam crammed two twin mattresses into a small closet... whatever you do... do NOT open that door! Then this inflammation really started to kick me up. I gave up for the day. And didn't start back today... so now we have a deadline... be done before Becky arrives! (They will move in together during guest visits, but are each keeping their own room/ top bunk.)

In assisting supervising demanding the boys CLEAN their rooms, I discovered they still had TRASH from at least 13 months ago... when one of my older boys stayed with us for awhile. Sheesh. I will have to be invading their spaces more closely from now on.

Well, that is all for now. Hope you have had a blessed day today, and even more blessed tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Where has the week gone?

I didn't realize how long it had been since I posted a fresh blog! Monday, I went to my first inventory at another store. It really made me appreciate MY store! My dyslexia threw me for a couple of loops... 893001 looks exactly like 890031 to my brain. I discovered that clutching a clipboard in one hand and a pencil in the other for six and a half hours really makes my hands hurt!
 But we muddled through. This coming Monday, I go to South Fayetteville to count parts.

Tuesday was a long day on the job. Today was shorter... but then we went to the Library for the boys volunteer day. After the library, we headed to Hobby Lobby, where Daniel and Sam chose and purchased fabric for new cloaks. They picked out a lightweight black denim.

Brother XL2600I Sew Advance Sew Affordable 25-Stitch Free-Arm Sewing MachineMy new sewing machine arrived here at the house shortly after we got back from town. the boys were as anxious as I was to set it up and give it a test run. Their fabric is in the washing machine, getting "shrunk". After their cloaks are done, I will try to finish the baby dress I started back in the Spring... or was it Summer? I hope it will still fit Kimber. Babies grow so fast! Once I finish it, I am going to try matching dresses for Kimber and Nickole. I have a cute cow print. Maybe I can add cow print vests for Tyrel and Gavin? (I doubt I could stuff Connor and Alana into cutesy little matching clothes if I tried all day!)


Right now, I have some lentils on to cook for supper. I started out sauteeing chopped bacon, onions, and garlic until the bacon was done. Then added chicken broth, water, and the rinsed dry lentils. It smells wonderful in here.

Laundry is now drying. I fully intended to get my uniform shirts washed Tuesday.
It .did .NOT. happen.

You would think that with the time change, extra hour of sleep and all that... I would be all rested up and perky. Nope. My brain is still set on getting me up at the "old" time... so I am awake by 3:30 in the morning. Combine that with very strange, vivd dreams... and I was in bed before 7:00 last night. Can't even remember eating supper, although I am sure I must have. (Actually, I think I headed to be a few minutes after 6:00pm).

The laundry didn't get done, which, in turn, left me scrambling for a clean work shirt this morning. I had to settle for a T Shirt with O'Reilly's logo on it. And had to get THAT from Mr C. I wore a pair of work pants left from my Eagle days... which had been set aside because I was too fat for them. (Shameless brag: They were BAGGY on me today!!!)

Sigh. Guess I have things to do here that I can't do sitting here typing. have a blessed afternoon!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sunday Fall Back

Last night was the semi-annual changing of the time... we "Fall Back" the clocks one hour. So sleeping in this morning was especially decadent... getting to sleep late, and still getting up before 7:30 am! (When your internal alarm is set to go off at 4:30am, 7:30 is sleeping LATE).

So here it is not even 10 in the morning, and I am so ready for lunch! Come to think of it, maybe I am ready for breakfast... I don't think I had anything except tea. (This could explain my hunger, LOL!) Lunch today gets to be leftovers. We have quite a pile building up: Chili, spaghetti, pizza, salad... let everyone take their pick! I am thinking I will freeze whatever chili is not eaten at lunch. There isn't enough spaghetti sauce to worry about- it will be eaten or tossed after lunch.

Connor and Alana, my dear sweet grandkids, decided to spend a second night with us. Connor "camped" out in the van with Sam and Daniel last night. They all got cold, except Sam, who had a nice warm dog sleeping with him.

Supper tonight: roasted chicken breast and roots: Potatoes, onions, turnips, carrots, parsnips, and garlic. I will toss in a few portabello mushrooms and peppers as well. Maybe even add a cubed up sweet potato to the mix. Sprinkle with some coarse sea salt...  Delicious! (And fairly low calorie, if one doesn't go overboard on serving size.)