Thursday, December 31, 2009

all is calm

Last night both girls had friends over - the house was in giggle overload. It didn't help that we went back to Target to buy more candy, so they were all sugared up. Both sets of girls bought gingerbread house kits, so the kitchen is sticky with frosting and candy.

Tonight we're not really doing anything for new years. The family was invited to the annual shoot-em up New Years Eve paintgun war/potluck dinner, but it was held at a friends house a 2 our drive away and I really didn't feel like traveling that far. Angel #1 went there with friends though, he just can't resist a good paintgun war. Angel #2 is roaming town with her pink-haired BFF, then spending the night, WE is enjoying the holiday vicariously through a fireworks display on World of Warcraft. Angel #4 and her buddy were going to spend the night in the treehouse, but hubby deemed it unsafe, so the venue changed to the trampoline instead. We were just starting to take bets on how long they'd last out there when they came tromping into the house with all their gear claiming it was too cold to sleep out there. They made it to 9:00.

We can hear fireworks going off all over the place. I hope people are careful. We've got a bit of a drought going on right now and for the last few days, there's been a wildfire burning about 20 miles away from us - the 3rd in the last 2 weeks. They're having trouble putting this one out because it's in an inaccessible area - the only roads leading there are 4WD only and the forest canopy is so thick over the area that's burning that they can't dump water on the fire from helicopters. Every once in a while I catch a whiff of smoke in the air, though not as bad as the fire from 2 weeks ago - that one stunk up all the clothes I had hanging on the clothesline. Fireworks on New Years is one of the Hawaiian traditions we've had to get used to. You don't hear too many fireworks going off in Wisconsin on midnight of New Years, instead, everyone just hugs each other, thrilled that they made it through another year without freezing to death or being drained dry by F-16 sized mosquitoes. But in Hawaii, there are more fireworks on New Years than on July 4th. We'll be able to see the big displays the hotels put on from our front lanai - we've got a view of the entire town from there.

Anyhooters, I'm not planning on staying up til midnight unless the fireworks don't let me sleep. It's only a little after nine and I'm ready to hit the hay already. I DID watch the ball drop in Times Square though, courtesy of Hulu. One of the benefits of living in Hawaii is that I'm still awake to see that event since it happens at 7pm our time.

Happy New Years everyone - see ya in 2010!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

lovin' those clearance sales

Hubby and the boys went camping today and Angel #4 is at a friends house, that left Angel #2and me home for the day. We decided to do a little shopping, she needed some new clothes. Well, we didn't get a whole lot in the clothing department, but as we were wandering around Target, we noticed the clearance signs. Never one to pass up a sale of any sort, we wandered over and saw all their Christmas candy was 75% off. We were only going to grab a few things, but before you knew it, I had to send the angel off to get a cart because we ran out of arm room. We're celebrating our quiet night at home by eating chocolate covered cherries, peppermint bark and candy canes. Life doesn't get any better.

The caffeine is getting to us though, as evidence by this conversation:
Angel (laughing while watching a movie on Hulu): This guy just confessed that he tossed his fiance's dad at his bachelor party. His fiance's dad is a midget.

Me: What in the world are you watching?

Angel: It's a romantic comedy.

Me: What one?

Angel: I don't know, there can't be that many romantic comedies with midgets in them...and all their roles are small anyway. *snerk snerk*

Me: There are no small roles, only small actors.

Yeah, I know, we're laying off the chocolate now.


Friday, December 25, 2009

reaping the rewards

Yesterday, I was in a baking mood. I started it all by making 4 loaves of bread, then figured since we were all going to be home this morning, I would make some cinnamon rolls, put them in the fridge and let them rise this morning so we could have warm rolls for breakfast. Then, the thought of those rolls made my sweet tooth act up, so I made a double batch of ginger snaps. So today, the house was full of yummy food.

Other than feeding our faces, we didn't do much today. We don't celebrate Christmas, so we pretty much always spend the day being slugs around the house. Since everything closes down for the day, there's not all that much for us to do anyway.

Our dishwasher still isn't working right, so the kids are still busy building character. They're not too happy about it, but at least with them handwashing, our dishes are clean. I suppose I'll have to call the landlord tomorrow and see if he can do something to get it working right or bite the bullet and just get a new one.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

sometimes you've got to change the details

We've got the holidays all mixed up around here. Today Wormeater and I went on an Easter Egg hunt, only it's a few days before Christmas and we were hunting pumpkins, not eggs. I'd planted a pumpkin plant quite a while ago, but was having problems keeping the snails from eating the blossoms off the plants before they had a chance to become pumpkins. I pretty much ignored the plant and the area where it was planted and it became overgrown. You know how you start a project, then you get sucked into another one? That's what happened to me today. I was going to weed out the area I'm turning into an herb garden, but needed the shovel first. The shovel was lying by the poinsettia bush (which is in full bloom, btw). While I was grabbing the shovel, I pulled out a few weeds by the poinsettia and went over to throw them where I usually do by the pumpkin patch. Then I started pulling at weeds by the pumpkin patch, not seeing a single pumpkin. The lack of pumpkins made me think that maybe I should just pull up a lot of the vines and get rid of them so we could go over the whole area with a weed whacker. I started pulling at one vine, which was rather heavy and I saw there was a big orange pumpkin on it. In order to get to it since it was down on some rocks, I needed to weed my way down and while I was there, I saw there was a green pumpkin there as well. Nestled in the rocks under the green pumpkin was another orange one. WE came out to help and I sent him on the search for the great pumpkin as well. In the end, we found 2 green ones and 3 orange ones. The green ones got pulled off the vines, so they're sitting on the porch next to the ripe ones. Does anyone know if pumpkins will ripen off-vine like tomatoes do?

The microwave that stopped working when we de-cockroached it has been sitting on the porch for the last 2 weeks. I was going to have hubby haul it to the dump today, but thought I'd plug it in, just to make sure that it was still dead. (you know what's coming here, don't you?) Yep, the dumb thing is working just fine now. So, the dilemma, do I take the new one back to the store and use the old one again, or do we stick the old one down in the basement in anticipation of some day needing another microwave? Angel #1 is graduating this spring - he may need a microwave if he moves into an apartment on the island. Of course, if he moved off-island, which he's talking about doing, it won't be worth it to take the microwave with him. Ah, decisions decisions.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

As sands through the hourglass, these are the Days of our Dishwaher

We had the "yay, the dishwasher's fixed" party too soon, I guess. The dishes were dirty again today. Hubby took it apart and supposedly fixed it this time, we'll have to see. Once it was all in pieces, he forgot how to put it back together again, which caused a few problems. He needed some tools and asked for a straight screwdriver - Angel #2, being the kind of kid she is, told him we only have gay ones. I think the fumes from the yellow Playtex gloves I gave her were going to her head...or maybe it was all that yellow hair dye. Anyway, hopefully, things are going to work properly now because I'm sick of whiney dishwashing kids.

Since my computers been fixed, my touchpad has been really sensitive and when I type, my cursor keeps jumping around the page, making doing a blog entry a bit annoying. I also found out that the headphone jack no longer works on it, so my kids had to listen to me listen to Castle tonight. Not that anyone could complain about hearing the wonderfulness of Nathan Fillion's voice, but they'd rather hear it as Captain Hammer, not Richard Castle.

Monday, December 21, 2009

what is it with hair in this household?

Tonight, Angel #4 and her BFF were in the bathroom and they came over to me looking really upset. BFF decided to "trim" her bangs and she's now got 1/2 inch stubby flyaways sticking out of her forehead. It was the old trying to even them out trap. Her dad is taking her to the hair place tomorrow to see if it can be fixed, but I told her it was going to be a case of sucking it up until they grow out and it's probably best if she have a responsible person cut her bangs in the future.

Our landlord fixed our dishwasher today. It's been broken for the last three days and I've been trying to tell the kids that it's character building to handwash dishes, but they're not interested in building any, I guess. We also had to get a new microwave. Ours had cockroaches living, not inside the microwave itself, but behind the keypad in the electronics part of it. We knew they were there because they would crawl around between the glowing numbers and the glass part. V gross. Hubby took the machine apart and used bug killer to get rid of them all. It worked, but also wrecked the microwave. Between my computer, the dishwasher and the microwave, it hasn't been a good month for appliances around here.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

it went crash

Very much sadness in my house this week, my computer died. If you want a sinking feeling in your stomach, try looking at your computer screen and seeing nothing but a black screen and a cursor. Yep, that's all I had. Angel #1 finally got around to fixing it today, after I'd been computerless for an entire week. My life is just full of tragedies.

It's not like you missed a whole lot this week with me not posting. It's just been the usual around here. Angel #2 came home last night a strawberry blond. She and her best friend colored their hair. At least the angel's hair is kind of found in nature, her friend's hair is dark pink (yes, on purpose).

It was death to mongooses (mongeese? mongi?) this week as well. We're trying to get them out of the area since the nasty things will eat baby chickens and eggs is we let them. So we got a trap and got 4 of them got caught. Nothing's been caught since, so we'll probably move the trap further out and see if we can get some more. The island is crawling with mongoose and they're a real nuisance and trust me, no one is going to miss them.

There was a bad wildfire about 30 miles from here this weekend and our house was smelling like woodsmoke in the mornings. It was really getting annoying. Fortunately, this morning we had a really wild rain storm which hopefully put the fire out. We were at church during the worst of it and there's a metal roof on house where we meet and the rain was so loud we couldn't really hear what anyone was saying. We all pulled our chairs close together so we could get as close as possible. It was kind of nice. We got home to find the top of a papaya tree lying in our driveway, so it must have gotten pretty windy here. We don't usually get storms that have thunder and lightning, so it was kind of neat hearing it all, it was kind of like a summer storm in Wisconsin (except in WI, they don't really have the papaya tree problem).

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Buddy's Birthday

Last night, we went to a popular night spot, Huggos, to celebrate our friend Buddy's 50th birthday. Buddy's had a rough year (his only child died last spring) and it was nice to see him out and enjoying himself. Hubby and I don't usually go out at night and the only time we go to night spots is when we're out with Buddy and his wife, Joyce. Interesting people go out and party at night. One guy we were calling Mr. Happy was having way too much fun dancing with anything that looked vaguely female and when none were available, just dancing by himself. Mr. Happy also had been very thirsty, so was having a difficult time keeping his balance during the more daring of his dance moves. He plopped himself down at our table for a while and I warned Joyce that she was his next target - she laughed, until he started sidling up next to her, than it was me doing the laughing. There was also a woman I referred to as "the Alien". She had overly processed hair that was supposed to be blonde but was white, and spray on tan that was supposed to be bronze but was orange. She looked like she was in her mid-60's, wearing a skin tight, very short dress and she thought she was all that. Hubby and I spent the drive home discussing if her boobs were store-bought or the real thing. I think I'm done doing the nightclub thing for a while now.

Now, for the opposite end of the spectrum, I've got to go get ready for a funeral for our beautiful Auntie Lilly. Auntie is a term of respect and endearment down here, so Auntie Lilly isn't an actual relative of ours or anything. But we used to pick her up at the nursing home and bring her to church with us when she was able. She was about 92 years old, so she lived a long useful life and was ready to go, but we'll miss her.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Happy Anniversary Baby

got you on my mi-ind. Yep, it's that time of year again when hubby and I celebrate our anniversary. Unlike previous years though, this time we're celebrating our 19th anniversary. Yay us! To celebrate, we went to the Toastmaster's holiday get-together. Yeah, not real romantic, but hubby's Toastmasters group is full of fun people and it was a nice time. There are a couple professional musicians in the group, so there was a little impromptu singing going on.

When we got home, we played a game of Pictionary with the 4 results of our 19 years of marriage and with 2 of the ministers from our church who are spending the next couple days with us. I was on the boys team...my drawing skills are on par with my bocce ball skills. We lost

I just took the tags off a 19 year old washcloth. How do I know it's 19 years old? We got it an a matching towel as a wedding gift from someone. They're these fancy kind with lace trim and stuff and I was saving them for a special occasion. Apparently, the special occasion was running out of clean washcloths.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

oh, and another thing

apparently, saying "Shannon, I have my Panda Express under your seat" sounds a whole lot like "Shannon, I have my panties pressed under your seat" and causes outrageous giggle fits on a military plane full of Special Olympics athletes. Next time, I'm not telling Shannon where I put my box of leftover Chinese food.

back from the Olympics

Yeah, the title says it all. My partner, Apple, and I didn't do any better at the state games than we did at the area games back in October. We got the bronze medal, 3rd place out of 3 teams Because of a flight snafu, one of the islands teams couldn't make it, hence only 3 teams in our division. Basically, we flew all the way to Oahu so we could play against 2 teams from our island that we play against all the time in practice. There weren't a lot of bocce teams because fall isn't really bocce season - it's bowling. But not all islands have a bowling alley. We've got one on our side, but it's been closed for remodeling, so we couldn't bowl, which is why we did bocce.

We had a really fun time at the games. They were held at Hickum air force base and they flew us there in military transport planes. They're not a comfortable as commercial flights, but it's more fun on them. They even let one of the athletes sit up in the cockpit and he got to turn the engines off when we landed on Oahu. Saturday night, when all the volunteers were exhausted after catching a 6am flight, then spending the day outside with bocce ball or in the gym with the basketball team (West Hawaii got the silver YAY!) all the athletes were shaking their groove thang out on the dance floor. I don't know where they got their energy. The dance was held in a huge hangar and man, was it noisy. They don't build those things with creating good acoustics in mind.

I also got a new nickname over the weekend. I am now known as The Alabaster Princess because of my skin's amazing ability to stay pasty white despite spending 2 days out in the sun with a dab of sunscreen on my nose only. Yep, I don't tan OR burn - at least very easily. I just reflect. I tried to tell them that, but they didn't believe me. But, by this afternoon when I was the only bocce ball participant who wasn't sunburned (besides the Hawaiians, who just get a gorgeous dark tan), they knew I was telling the truth. There were even a few on the basket ball team who had more of a burn than me, and they'd spent most of their weekend inside a gym. I have few talents, unfortunately, one of them is my body's complete inability to tan (and one of them obviously ISN'T bocce ball). Once they post the weekends pictures on the S O website, I'll give you a link so you can see how much fun we had.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Olympic bound

Tomorrow I head out on a military transport plane to Oahu for the state finals of the Special Olympics. Pretty cool, eh? No TSA, no tickets, no lines or baggage claims, no stupid 3oz of liquid in a ziploc bag. Thank goodness the flight is only about 45 minutes though, since I'm guessing the seats aren't too comfortable and there's no inflight movie. Since my partner, Apple and I took last place in the local games, we're in the last division this weekend, which means that we're playing against the worst bocce ball players on the other islands. We rotten athletes have to stick together, you know. But we may have a fighting chance of getting better than last place. I'll let you know on Sunday when I get back.

The other day, the chicken we have that was sitting on 15 eggs hatched them out. Well, 12 of them anyway. She gave up on the other 3 and hubby went to check them out. He broke a little of the shells off them and saw that while 2 were bad, the 3rd had a live baby chick in it yet. So we set up a heating pad on the kitchen counter, put the egg on it and waited to see what happened. About 10 last night, we got a front row seat to watch it hatch out of the egg. Pretty cool. Once it was on its feet and dried off and fluffy, hubby and the boys put it under the mother chicken and now she's got 13 happy healthy children. Yay!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

lost in translation

We got a little giggle today at poor hubby's expense. The poor guy mutilates the Hawaiian language (many times on purpose). The word for land in Hawaiian is aina, pronounced eye-nah and one of the companies who bring their machines in where I work is a landscaping company called Aina Scapes, which is cute, imo. But hubby mispronounced Aina, giving the first 'a' a long sounds, A-nah Scapes. Say it out loud. Yeah, it sounds like something you'd wear with a hospital gown so your butt doesn't show.

I'm so flattered that when Jeanne C sees a can of Pringles she thinks of me. Like she said, I guess there are a whole lot worse things that could remind her of me. I have things like that, too. Like, when I smell pigs, I think of my Grandpa. When I was little, he worked with pigs and the smell would cling to him, so to me, a pig smell is a happy smell because I loved my Grandpa to pieces. The smell of coffee perking over a gas stove reminds me of camping up north in our little pop-up camper back before my mom died. Fresh cut alfalfa just takes me to a happy place. I guess I'm an olfactory memory kind of person instead of a visual one.

Oh yes, and I also need to thank Jeanne for that enlightening interpretation of my mongoose dream. Now I'm afraid to go to sleep at night, terrified about what other deep seated secrets my dreams are going to reveal to me.

I got an e-mail from my friend Renee today. She was my Starbucks buddy until she oh so heartlessly moved back to Canada last May. I realized that I haven't been to Starbucks since she moved and I also realized that it's the Christmas season, which means they've got that peppermint mocha stuff again, which is so awesomely good last year. So I convinced my friend Lydia to meet me for coffee tomorrow morning - truth be told, it didn't take much convincing, I think she was jonesing for some Starbucks as well.

Monday, November 30, 2009

back

We got back from Oahu last night. This morning, I did 3 loads of laundry, balanced the checkbook before paying the bills then went to work. Straight from work I went to a Special Olympics meeting then got home around 7. Sometimes it seems like there's twice as much work to recover from a vacation than there is actual vacation.

We went to the mall on Wednesday, slapped some $ into the 3 older kids hands and sent them on their way. Angel #4 couldn't understand why I held her money and made her stick with me during the shopping trip, but after she tried to talk me into buying her 4 in high stilettos and a black lace bustier, I knew I made the right decision. She ended up getting a new pair of shorts and tee shirt as well as a new watch and for a special splurge, a black and purple fedora. She wore the fedora pretty much the entire weekend when she could get away with it, including sleeping with it on. She really likes that hat. While we were sitting in the airport last night waiting for our flight, she discovered that she lost her ticket. After searching for it for about 15 minutes, she came and told me. We got her a new ticket printed up. Once on the plane, she took her hat off and what do you think she found? Yep, she put her ticket inside her hat for safekeeping and forgot about it. sigh

We had a wonderful time at our church convention, seeing many people we only see once a year. It was great to see them all there again. They were good days. But, now it's back to reality.

Saturday night I dreamed that I was walking around Walmart with a mongoose on a leash. A lady bent over and was going to pet the mongoose and I told her not to because it bites. We were shopping for a motor so I could make a little car for the mongoose to drive around in. Any dream interpreters out there that can explain that one?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

getting ready

Tomorrow morning we fly out to Oahu for our church convention. We'll get home again on Sunday night, happy, but exhausted with lots of dirty laundry to wash. No internet or computers, so I'll fill you in on our adventures when I get back. We're going early so we can spend tomorrow shopping - we don't have a whole lot for stores on our island, so Oahu means SHOPPING! Ala Moana Mall, here we come.

An exciting day at work today, they put a lock on the bathroom door. Before that, the door had one of those locks that locks automatically when you close it, which is fine, as long as there's only one key and you've got it, otherwise, you run the risk of getting surprise visitor. One of our guys mentioned it to the building manager that it would be nice to have a lock on the door and the guys response was, well, you're the only ones who use it, so it'll be okay. The general consensus of those of us who are 'the only ones using it' was that we'd actually rather have some bum (who wants to use the bathroom because he's not allowed to pee on the dumpster) walk in on us while we're on the john than someone we worked with. Anyway, the management got on it and we now have a lock. This is the same guy who was giving us regular bathroom reports when we first moved into the building. He was so excited about the lock that he had a couple of our guys go in the bathroom to try it out. How do you politely tell a guy that you'd rather not go into the bathroom with him to see his new locks? Well, our guys couldn't figure out how, so they both got stuck standing there in this tiny, airless bathroom watching Terry proudly work the lock. It's the little things in life, people.

This morning hubby needed to check on a leak on our minivan. He needed to get under the van and we don't have ramps, so he drove one tire up on some crumbling cement blocks (I'm sure they were OSHA approved), then crawled underneath the van to check it out. Then he wanted me to rev the engine up for him, I didn't want to get in the van to do it for fear that my weight would be just enough to send the van crashing down on hubby's head, so I did the revving with my hand. Then he told me to get in the van and turn the steering wheel back and forth a bit. I considered having him sign a release form so if the van did fall and smush his head, I wouldn't be held responsible. I'm happy to report that I didn't smush my husband this morning - he didn't fix the leak, but he knows where it is and is going to borrow some ramps (much to my relief) so he can fix it when we get home from Oahu. Looking at the engine of our van, I've come to the realization that it leaks just about every kind of fluid it could possibly leak. I think we need a new vehicle, but I'd really rather have a car instead of a van, that means that we're going to have to limp our van along until enough kids move out of the house that we don't need all the seating a van provides. One of the downfalls of having 4 kids is that you're pretty much sentenced to at least 15 straight years of driving a minivan.

Monday, November 23, 2009

I'm sorry doctor, it looks like we lost him

I was sitting at a stoplight this morning, idly watching some county workers messing around with the lights on the corner. One of the lanes in the cross traffic was coned off and closed and there was a guy there, on his knees working on something in the road. Then I did a double take because it looked just like he had a doctors stethoscope around his neck. My second look reveled that, yes, indeedy, it was a stethoscope around his neck, then he put it in his ears and started listening to the road. It was then that the light turned green and I figured the people behind me probably wouldn't be too happy if I stuck around to see if he could find a heart beat or not, so I had to continue on my merry way. But, my question is, is a stethoscope standard work construction equipment where you live? Also, I'm still trying to figure out the purpose of those round thingys dangling from the back of the county workers hard hats. Anyone know? They look like a cover to a bottle of juice or something and every guy has one hanging from his hat.

In other exciting news, I finished Nanowrimo again this year. Yep, I just wrote a 50,000 word novel starting on November 1st. I have til the 30th to finish, but we're going out of town for Thanksgiving weekend and won't get back until the night of the 29th and I'm going to be playing catch-up with my life on the 30th, so I wanted to get done before we left on Wednesday. I did it with time to spare. To say I'm slightly burned out would be a bit of an understatement. My story isn't finished yet, but at least I've got my Nano word count, which was my goal for the month. Now I'm going to crawl into bed and sleep the sleep of the hardworking.

Monday, November 16, 2009

yes, I'm still alive

Gosh, I've been busy. I'm pleased to say I've hit 35K in my Nanowrimo word count, that means only 15K more to write and I've won another Nano. Yay!

Interesting day in church yesterday. The home where we meet on Sunday morning has two dogs. They lock them up in pens behind their garage during meeting. Well, yesterday, their little pug got out and came running inside (one wall of the house opens up to the outside-you can do that in Hawaii) right before church started. So Don had to scoop up this wiggly little pug dog and stick him back in his pen before we could get started. Then, about halfway through, a little five year old girl went to the bathroom and then couldn't unlock the bathroom door to get out. The bathroom opens up into the room we were in, so we could hear the knob turning and her working at the lock. Fortunately, she's a cool little kid and waited patiently for someone to get her out. So once again, Don, the owner of the house, came to the rescue. Well, he tried to anyway, but he couldn't find anything to unlock the door with. Let me tell you, it's real hard to concentrate on church when there's a guy 15 feet away from you trying to pick the lock on his bathroom door. Eventually he gave up and had his 18 year old son climb through the bathroom window and get little Kewena out. I didn't see him since I was on the other side of the room, but Angel #2 said she glanced over to the bathroom window and saw Kiefer dive through headfirst on his Kewena rescue. She said all she saw was legs going through the window.

To top off our church going experience, we had vacationers there as well. We have those a lot, one of the benefits of living here is you get to meet people from all over the country. I didn't really look at the strangers when we came in, I just sat down in the row in front of them. You can imagine my surprise when I turned around later and saw some friends of ours from Wisconsin sitting there. It was great seeing Gary and Sue again, we hadn't seen them in years. We were particularly close to Sue's mother and brothers and it was nice to get a family update on how everyone was doing.

All in all, Sunday was a pretty interesting day.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

It's been a quiet week at Lake Wasabi

I went to work today to see a lake where the parking lot used to be. We've been assured by the buildings other residents that this only happens when it rains, so that's good to know. It was about 3-4 inches deep in some spots and we're thinking about giving ferry rides to paying customers around the lot. Chuck, the previous tenant, says they call it Lake Wasabi. As nice as it is to have waterfront property, Tony is going to talk to the landlord to have him send someone over to suck up the crud that's clogging up the storm drain.

Talk about work - remember all the old guys who are renting the surrounding units? It's weird. You know how, in old tv shows like Bonanza, Gun Smoke etc, where the main characters wear the same outfits every episode? Well, the old guys in the building are just like that. In the week and a half that we've been there, Chuck has always worn blue pants with a red shirt and Terry/Eb wears the same exact striped shirt and shorts pulled up to his armpits. It's like I'm living in an episode of Gilligans Island or something.

Today, a guy came in and said he wasn't sure if we'd be open since it was a holiday. I said we were too busy to take a day off, but, jokingly, I said that at 11:00, we'd all stand up and face the east for a moment of silence. The man didn't have a clue what I was talking about? When I was in school, every November 11 at 11:00, we'd stand beside our desks, everyone facing east, and have a minute of silence while Taps played over the PA system. I thought every school did that. So, now I want to know, did you do that at your school, or was it just a Wisconsin thing...or maybe a particular thing my school district did? My kids get the whole entire day off. They won't have a full 5 day school week until the end of February and there's only a total of 4 full school weeks scheduled for the remainder of the entire school year. Any wonder why Hawaii ranks almost last in the nation for education?

Monday, November 9, 2009

Nanowrimo's got me busy

Between working almost full days and doing Nanowrimo in my free time, I don't have much time to write here. Not that things having been happening, just that I don't have time to report them. I'm now at over 18,000 words, so I'm creeping slowly up to the halfway point.

Today, Angel #2 got a new cat. She's been missing Mouschi, her cat who was hit by a car last month. I ran into my friend DeAnne at the bank today and she told me that they had renters for their house and needed to do something about their cats and asked if #2 might be interested. So we now have a little, half feral cat that I've been calling Emo, since it's freaked out, won't come out of it's box and is all black, kind of like a certain Emo daughter I have. She started calling it Emo too, but I don't know if that's going to be it's official name now or not. She says no, but hasn't come up with anything better yet.

Are any of you familiar with the Missing Leprechaun puzzle? It is currently driving our entire family crazy trying to figure out where the 15th leprechaun goes and which lep is it that disappears anyway? We've got the puzzle and it's sitting on the kitchen counter and various members of the family will sit there and stare at the puzzle. At the moment, Angel #1 is sitting there counting the noses and yelling, where did the nose go? Now he's giving me a theory about body parts morphing onto other leprechauns. It's a real head scratcher, let me tell ya.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

dumpster adventures

Today, as I was going past the "do not pee" dumpster, I said hi to Eb, whose real name is Terry, which makes for 3 Terry's in the same building, the building manager Terry, one of the guys I work with Terry and Terry, the homeless guy who sleeps in a van with his friend Larry. Anyway, I said hi to Eb/Terry, then noticed what he was doing -- spraying the dumpster with disinfectant. So, not only can you not pee on it, it's also germ-free. We've got the cleanest garbage in town, folks. Sadly, our parking lot is not so clean, because hubby lost his lunch on it. Literally. We were eating lunch together and he just unwrapped his hamburger when he dropped it and it fell apart on the ground. He reached over to pick it up and dumped his smoothie over in the process. There was purple smoothie goo running down the side of the lawn tractor he was sitting on. Yes, we were sitting side by side on a couple of lawn tractors (in the small engine repair world, you have to use what's available if you want to sit while eating lunch). It's very romantic, trust me. At least until you end up covered in deluxe cheeseburger and berry smoothie.

Monday, November 2, 2009

what a day!

Whew, I need to sit down and take a breath after the day I had today. The guy I do bookkeeping for, Tony, moved to a new shop over the weekend. Because of the chaos that's involved in a move, he asked if I could put in more hours working the service counter so he had time to get things organized at the new place. One of his guys didn't show up today, which really put things in a jumble. Of course, as expected, the phone company screwed things up. When we called them last week, we were told that all we had to do was call on the day of the move and they'd have the line switched within an hour. So, this morning I call and am told that they're scheduling a week out for line connecting. After some stern talking and a discussion with the supervisor, we finally got it hooked up in about 5 hours. I do not exaggerate when I say we have NEVER had dealings with the local phone company here without them screwing something up. They once disconnected our phone, on purpose, 5 times in one weekend. They went bankrupt last year and the government bailed them out - I think they just should have let them go down.

While I was working at the new shop, I went outside for something and passed the dumpster and noticed a sign taped on the side of it. It said: No Peeing Allowed. Now, of course, this makes me wonder why someone felt the need to have that particular rule posted on the side of the dumpster. I also met, as hubby calls them, a whole new cast of characters. There's this guy hubby calls Eb who's like the caretaker of the property. He made sure that all of us involved in moving into the new place were up to speed on the bathroom situation, including the brand of toilet paper he supplies (Scott's 1000 sheets, in case you were wondering) and the paper towels provided for drying off hands (Viva). Then there's Chuck, the 84 year old former tenant of the shop. Chuck hadn't gotten around to moving all his accumulated stuff out before the end of the month, so if we wanted to move our stuff in, we had to help Chuck move his stuff out. Chuck has a LOT of stuff. They're hoping that after another full day of hauling like they had today, the rest of his stuff should be out by tomorrow night. Then there's Terry - the homeless guy who lives somewhere in the vicinity of the shop. We're suspecting that he's the reason for the no peeing sign on the dumpster. Something the guys hadn't noticed when they originally checked the building out and signed the lease, is that it's right next door to Pacific Waste Removal. Yep, we're next door to a garbage truck parking lot. It's not too bad during the day, but when all the trucks come back by the late afternoon, things get pretty ripe. Fortunately, Tony closes at 5 and I'm usually out of there earlier, so it might only cause major problems on Saturdays when Tony is open and the trash company isn't.

In addition to my exciting day working at the new shop, I also had parent teacher conferences, a safety inspection scheduled for my van and bread to make because we ran out on Saturday and I hadn't gotten around to making any until today. I also found out that I committed myself to post an entry at the Unusual Historicals blog, which I'd forgotten about and still haven't done. This has to be in by tomorrow afternoon at the very latest. Don't even ask me about my Nano project - I don't wanna talk about it.

Hopefully tomorrow goes a little smoother.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

exciting bonus entry

I wanted to write this down because I'll forget it otherwise. Tonight at supper, WE asked hubby if he could steal a billion dollars without anyone knowing about it, would you? Hubby said no, because someone WOULD know about it, him and he wouldn't want to live with himself if he knew he stole it from people. WE with his typical logic said, "with that kind of money, you could pay someone to erase that memory from your brain." How do you argue with something like that?

It's November, let the craziness begin

Tanya, that's too funny about your hubcap. Isn't it handy to have kids so you can send them on errands you're too embarrassed to do yourself?

Today is the first day of National Novel Writing Month, aka Nanowrimo. This is my 4th year doing Nano and I've managed to finish the previous 3 times I've done it. The idea is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. If you figure about 250 words per page, that's 200 pages of writing or about 1667 words written per day. I usually shoot for 2000 words a day so I'm done in plenty of time before the end of the month. This worked great last month when I finished by the 25th, but not so much the year before when I finally hit 50K at 11:45pm on November 30th. I don't recommend doing this as it causes horrible hand cramps when you have to write 10,000 words in about 12 hours. Anyway, I'm off to a good start with over 2200 words written today. Hopefully I can keep it up. My very first published book, It Takes Moxie, was also my very first Nanowrimo project. So good things DO come out of Nano.

We now short one wild pig in our yard, but it wasn't my guys who got it. Our landlord must have given a bunch of guys permission to go hunting out there and they're now parked at the end of our driveway in a pickup truck with a big ol' pig lying in the back. One down, who knows how many left to go. Hubby and the boys saw at least 5 of them the night they caught the piglet last week.

Angel #2's cell phone fell out of her bag this morning when she was getting in the van to go to church. She didn't notice it until later and assumed she set it down someplace. Well, we found it after we got home, the van tire went right over it. Amazingly enough, all it did was crack the glass front screen, but not even enough to mess the screen itself up. So everything on it works just fine, it's just not so purdy anymore. For a hot pink telephone, it's a pretty tough little bugger.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

that didn't last long

The pig the kids caught on Tuesday night lasted about 6 hours. About 1am I woke up hearing the strangest noise and it took me a while to figure out what it was. Once I was awake and cognizant enough, I realized it was the piglet squealing like it was next in line at the slaughterhouse. Since I prefer sleeping to listening to pigs at 1am (or just about any time, if you want to know the truth) I gave hubby a helpful little nudge and told him he had to 'do something about that stupid pig'. He crawled out of bed sounding none too enthusiastic and 20 minutes later, he was back and all was quiet. I asked him what he did and he said he let it go, but he had to catch it first, which was no easy feat, those little buggers are fast. I guess I should have pulled myself out of bed and made use of the video camera, because I'm sure watching hubby running around in his underwear with a flashlight trying to catch a squealing baby pig at 1am would make for some wonderful viewing.

I don't think the guys who put on my tires on Tuesday did a good job putting my hubcaps back on. Last night we were driving to Bible Study and we heard an odd noise like something plastic hitting the gravel then rolling down the road. Angel #1 said, that sounded like a hubcap. I hadn't seen one on the side of the road as I was driving, though that's not to say there wasn't. The road is a narrow, twisty one perched on the side of a mountain with very few guardrails, so I spend most of my time trying to keep between the lines and not doing much looking around. Problem is, I'm not sure how many hubcaps were on my van in the first place but it won't be an issue any more, since now there aren't any on it. My van is a mess.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

oink

After a couple weeks of trying, we have success at the Daydreamer household. Well, I don't think of it as success, exactly, but many people in this house do. They (they being hubby, the boys and angel #4) have caught a baby wild pig. They have it penned up and I'm not sure what they're planning on doing with it. Is this something we're going to be eating eventually? I think so. But it's such a little bugger right now that we're going to be feeding it for quite a while before it'll make a decent pan of pork chops.

I got new back tire for my mini-van today. It so very seldom gets new things that I think it's over the top with happiness right now. The only new thing it usually gets is a new quart of oil every couple weeks because it leaks so badly. I know I feel more comfortable driving on our twisty, mountain roads on tires that don't have the steel belts poking out. Now, if we could only figure out why the brake light never goes off, we'd be golden.

Sunday we stopped by Costco on the way home from church to pick up a pizza for lunch. There is a sale on pizzas this month, so technically, we're supposedly saving money. But, as usually happens at Costco, our $7 pizza ended up costing us $109 at the register. You'd think after hitting the Costco buffet (aka free samples) pretty hard we'd be so full we wouldn't even be tempted by all those huge cartons of food. Not so! And, of course, since everything does come supersized, it doesn't take long to spend $100 at Costco anyway. The one redeeming thing when you spend a fortune on groceries is that they're groceries. You're going to eat them eventually. It's not like you dropped a wad on electronics or dvds or something that in the long run have no positive features like food. You need food to live, you can (usually) live without the boxed set of the 2nd season of Desperate Housewives. Then again, you can watch Desperate Housewives over and over again, you only get one go-round with a bag of cheese stuffed ravioli.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Yeah, I"m still around

It's been a while since I posted, but, in my defense, it's been a busy week. Tuesday morning, we found Angel #2's cat dead by the side of the road. NOT a good thing. Not only is she going to miss her best friend, but her cat was the best hunter we had and was the one catching all the rats. As much as I don't like finding dead rats lying around, I hate hearing live ones running around even more. We'll have to see if she wants another cat or not. Time will tell.

We had the Special Olympics Area Bocce Ball tournament today. I'm a unified partner with a girl named Apple. How we place today determines who we go up against in Oahu in December. Well, Apple and I placed 4th place, which doesn't sound too bad until you consider that there were 4 teams. Yeah, I placed dead last in the Special Olympics. I never claimed to be any kind of an athlete and I guess that just proves it. But, I had a great time, and that's what really matters. The silver lining is that, because we're the worst bocce team on the West side of the island, come the State Tournaments, they'll put us up against other sucky teams, so we may have a chance at a medal if we can get our bocce groove on.

Monday, October 19, 2009

good news!

I'm happy to announce that I sold another book. YAY! I tend to think of this one as my baby since it was and still is the book that I love the most. It was the second manuscript that I ever wrote and my first one set in the 1920's, so it's all full of ganstery goodness. It doesn't have an official name or release date yet, but it'll be about a year before you'll be able to read it. I'll keep you posted.

Yesterday I did orientation and training to be an official Special Olympic volunteer. I spent a couple hours at someones house, then last night I did a little online training and a quiz. Now, provided I pass the criminal background check (which I'm assuming shouldn't be a problem), I'll officially be in. Of course, with all that stuff in my head right before I went to bed, I spent the night dreaming of bocce ball and going to the state competition, which is in December. You'd think I'd have better things to dream about, wouldn't you? Heck, I'd even be willing to take playing bocce ball with Gerard Butler (or anything with Gerard Butler). Uh wait, I take that back. I don't think I told you the dream I had a month or two ago. I dreamed that there was an upstairs apartment in our house and Gerard Butler was renting it. I had to go into the apartment for some reason and, thinking Gerard wasn't home, walked in without knocking. He came out of the bathroom wearing women's underwear. Yeah, I could go a LONG time without having a dream like that one again. What the heck? I dream about Gerard Butler and he's a cross-dresser?!? Sometimes your subconscious can be evil.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

still full

Last night we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving with a group of good friends. One couple had us all to their house and they made ALL the food. Now that's my kind of get-together. After pigging out on turkey, mashed potatoes etc, I'm still full.

Hubby took a 6am flight over to Oahu today to compete in the state level Toastmaster's speaking competition. He won the local one a couple weeks ago without even planning on doing it. We'd gone to the competition to lend moral support to the ones who were competing and when we got there, they asked hubby if he could compete in the speech evaluation category since there was only one contestant. Fortunately, it's not the kind of speech you have to prepare for, as it's a verbal evaluation of someone else's speech. So now he's doing the same thing at the state level. I'm not sure if this would qualify him for a national competition if he wins this one or what, I imagine I'll get the details when he gets home tonight. He's so good at public speaking I'm sure he'll do well. I, on the other hand, prefer to be part of the audience.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

He's a happy boy

Angel #1 aka Scrooge McDuck, sold his car today. Actually, he just put the ad in Craigslist, I was the one who sold his car while he was in school. I was kind of surprised it sold, I forget that just because I don't want something around doesn't mean that someone else won't want it. And want it they did, and the Angel got twice what he paid for it. It was only a $200 profit, but any profit is good.

WE went pig hunting again tonight, though how he thought he was going to get a pig with a baseball bat while he was sitting 10 ft up in the air in a tree house is anyone's guess. He saw a pig, the biggest he'd ever seen according to him. He said it was the size of a short cow. We'll have to take his word for it since he was too scared to get out of the tree house to take the oinker on. Alas, no pork chops for us tonight.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

United Nations

Angel #4 loves her MP3 player and has been permanently plugged in since she got it yesterday. The problem is, she keeps singing along with the songs - not so attractive when her singing isn't being drowned out by the actual song playing. The curse of listening to music while wearing headphones.

Angel #1 didn't have anything to do at school today (long story) so he left early. I thought #2 had plans after school, so she wouldn't need a ride home, so all was good. But I was wrong, she DID have plans, but they included her brother dropping her and her friends off in town after school. So I got a phone call from her looking for a ride. Since I was already in town, I said I'd get her - then she said, some friends need a ride too. I jumped in Debbie (our car) and went to the high school and ended up having to cram 6 teenagers into a car built for only 5 (rather small) people. There were 5 girls crammed in the backseat. As I was driving I looked at who was all in there, Angel #2 and her best friend, both blue eyed blondes (or Aryan Nation Children, as a friend calls them), a typical-looking brown haired boy, a part Mexican girl, a Chinese girl whose family is 1st generation Americans and a girl who was wearing a sari-looking thing and looked East Indian. It looked like I was doing a pick-up at the United Nations. And where did I drop this culturally diverse little group off? K-Mart, of course. After all, they're all American kids, even if they don't look like the cast from Leave It To Beaver.

I got the good news today that my 5 year old nephew is now out of the hospital after spending the last 4 days there fighting a particularly nasty version of H1N1. He went in late Saturday night and has been living in a scary antiseptic world where everyone who dealt with him was wearing a mask. I'm guessing he's happy to be back home in his own bed again, and so am I.

Monday, October 12, 2009

birthday shopping

You're right, Jeannie, WE may be smarter, but Albert Einstein has it all over him in the humbleness department (I'm guessing Albert's grammar is better as well).

Tomorrow is Angel #4's eleventh birthday. She's been watching these how-to videos on Hulu called Howdini - it's an evil show that makes it look like it takes only 5 minutes to make really cute decorated birthday cakes. She couldn't decide between the panda bear cake and the mermaid, but finally decided on the mermaid. I was pretty thankful since it involves the least amount of cake sculpting and art skills. Sadly, I couldn't find Swedish Fish, gumdrops or reasonably prices fruit roll-ups (to wrap around a Barbie doll's legs to make the mermaid tail), so we decided to do the mermaid cake for Saturday when she has her party and just do a simple quickie cheesecake for the official day tomorrow. I was on the ball and remembered to buy birthday candles, we ran out for Angel #1's birthday in July and I resorted to breaking the candles in half so we had the required number of flames to blow out.

Yesterday, we were driving down the highway where part of the Ironman Triathlon took place on Saturday. For the past few weeks, they've had signs along the road saying Warning, Ironman Athletes in Training. Someone messed with the letters on one of the signs, making it say: Warning, Ironman Athletes in Pain. LOL What amazes me is that even after these people spent all day Saturday swimming 2 miles, biking 112 THEN running a full marathon, the very next day, some of them were right out there biking along the highway. Nuts, NUTS I say!

Hubby worked at the funeral home again today. He's learning new lessons every day. Last week, it was "never assume that just because something looks like a garbage can, it is". Today's lesson was "Just because that hill of dirt behind funeral home looks a little odd, doesn't mean it's not just a hill of dirt". I'm wondering if that last one is just wishful thinking on his part. Angel #1 had the day off school today and Hubby had him help him work at the funeral home - I think the Angel will be happy to go back to school tomorrow.

Oh, and one more thing. Isn't this the coolest turkey roasting pan ever? (yeah, I'm a kitchenwares geek)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

I thought I'd share

Quote from WE: If me and Albert Einstein had a conversation, his brain would blow up because I'm so smart.
So, now you know.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

friends again

Jeannie, it looks like Blogger and Bravenet are speaking again - at least partially. You and Afton are still on the bottom, but Holliday and Francine popped right up on top today.

We ran out of milk today. I hate when that happens - I hate it even worse when your town is overrun with 1500 Ironmen and their friends and family and I have to dodge all their extra traffic to get around. It's bad enough they ride bikes while wearing Speedos, I hate not being able to get through a traffic light the first time. Oh well, it'll all be over by Sunday and life as we know it will be back to what I consider normal.

Yesterday, when the kid headcount hit 7 I escaped and headed out to work to get a little peace and quiet. When you consider a small engine repair shop quiet, it's time to get some mental help. By the time I got home, there were only 3 kids left, so I was rewarded for my clever escape.

We heard wild pigs outside last night. They were pretty close to the house, so the boys decided to do some hunting. They went after them with nothing more than a weak flashlight, a machete and a baseball bat. They didn't get anything, but they're making more elaborate plans for tonight. I just told them to be careful, our insurance plan doesn't cover pig attacks.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

brain fart

I wasn't thinking today - or maybe I've just had the fight beat out of me. Whatever it was, I agreed to have a few sleepovers tonight, which means that I presently have 6 kids instead of the usual 4. Though Angel #2 has had her boyfriend visit the last 2 nights, which is like having 3 kids around instead of the actual 5 because they tend to hide out from the rest of the family. Of course, that doesn't stop Angel #4 from spying on them or anything.

Angel #2 and I went shopping today, just the two of us, which doesn't happen very often. She usually would rather shop with friends, but, since I control the checkbook.... I bought her a few pair of shoes, she only needed a good pair for church, but Payless was having a buy one pair get the 2nd 1/2 off, so she got herself a pair of Converse-looking hightops as well. Then we headed to Walmart to do a little pricing on MP3 players. She's decided that she's going to have to pick $75 worth of coffee for the one that she wants. After shopping she did some picking today, so she's $20 closer than she was before. Since she uses an old cd player now, I figure we'll save a ton of money on batteries once she gets the MP3.

So, are any of my vast swarms of readers doing Nanowrimo next month? For those of you not in the Nano loop, Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month and it's held every November. The idea is to write 50,000 words, starting with word number 1 on November 1st and having the final word count by midnight on November 30. I've complete Nano for 3 years now - my book It Takes Moxie was my very first Nano project. So, if you enjoy writing and want a little kick start, consider giving Nano a try, it's a lot of fun.

Monday, October 5, 2009

all in a days work

Hubby is installing a new air system in the local funeral home. He's a bit creeped out by the whole thing and the people who work there are enjoying that fact quite a bit. Two women own the place and hubby has a hard time telling their voices apart. He was in the hall, thinking he was talking to Person A in another room, she told him he could go into a certain room but had to unlock the door first. He opened the door and there was Person A standing on the other side. After he was done screaming like a little girl, he realized he'd been talking to Person B.

Today, he was working on a unit in the embalming room, which he was sharing with a dead body. The poor guy was afraid to breathe through his nose for fear that he was going to smell dead person and was breathing through his mouth in quick gasps, which, he discovered, causes hyperventilation. He also thought he was at the foot end of the body when he was working, then glanced over to see the persons head instead. Not the best working conditions, to say the least.

At least if he passes out and falls off a ladder, he'll be in the right place. I suspect he really looking forward to this job being over.

Don't feel too sorry for him though, yesterday, he totally lost his husband of the year award. I was wearing a new skirt and he told me it made my butt look big. After 18 1/2 years of marriage, you'd think he'd know better by now. When I was telling some friends, who had just complimented me on the skirt, btw, what he'd said, one of them asked me if I told him that the skirt made his mouth look big. You just gotta love friends who are always ready to defend you.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

next time I won't forget the seaweed

Thanks for the headsup about my blogroll Jeanne. I don't know what's up with that. I see it did the same thing with Afton - so I wonder if Blogger and Bravenet aren't speaking anymore?

Deb and Tanya, you've both got a very good point. I'm sure my kids are going to go on peanut butter strike now and demand something else, like deep fried pig skin or wasabi peanuts. I'm already in the doghouse because I forgot to pick up some nori when I was shopping. Yeah, I've become a neglectful mother who didn't buy her kids seaweed paper for their Spam musubis. Geez, when I was a kid, I would have considered it a punishment if my mom made me eat Spam and seaweed, my kids consider it a diet staple.

The kids have the next week of from school - it's the end of the 1st quarter, so they get a week off. It's also peak time for coffee picking, so I'm hoping they all go off to pick and make some money, with the added benefit of them not hanging around the house and bugging me. WE and Angel #2 picked on Saturday and each made $10/hour, not bad money for a kid, and it's much better than baling hay, which is what kids in Wisconsin have to do to make quick money in the summer.

And finally, isn't this just the greatest love story ever?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

major shopping trip

Hubster and I did some big grocery shopping today. I hadn't done major shopping in a long time and our stores were getting low. We actually ran out of peanut butter on Saturday - the way the kids acted, you'd have thought we'd run out of air. We now have 8 jars of Skippy sitting on the shelf, so we should be good for a little while.

Hubby bet WE the other day that he couldn't be quiet for 24 hours. To give him a little inspiration, he told him he'd give him $1million if he did it. WE made it half an hour before he forgot and started harassing Angel #4. This is probably a good thing, since we didn't exactly have the million dollars to pay him if he actually did it, but it was kind of like betting that rain is going to fall down instead of up, 0% risk factor. If only the odds in Vegas were as good.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Okay, I won't complain about rats anymore

I will no longer complain when the cat leaves an entire rat sitting in the doorway, because today, she left a partial one there. Yep, nothing but the head and tail and a few random entrails. NOT what I wanted to see when I got up this morning. But, dear hubby did his husbandly duty and took care of it along with the whole rat the cat also left lying there. Ugh, you'd think word would get out and all the nearby rats would look for safer pastures.

I was everyones favorite person today at bocce ball practice. I brought fresh bread, still warm from the oven for a snack for everyone. I don't think there's a person alive who can resist warm, fresh bread.

I discovered the other day that Angel #2 unfriended me from Facebook and she wouldn't refriend me. So, I did what any good mother would do, I started sending friend requests to her friends, explaining to them how mean she is for defriending me. I only sent it to one person, her best friend, since I don't know her other friends very much. Later I mentioned to her what I did, but didn't tell her who I sent the requests to. She, like any good teenager, overreacted and sent a message to all her friend, telling them to make sure they didn't friend me. Because of this, one of her friends (her former boyfriend, no less) searched my name and sent ME a friend request, just to bug her (in a friendly way). He also put the message she wrote on his page with an addition by him that everyone should friend me. I think it's hilarious that her attempt at damage control totally backfired on her. Sometimes, life IS fair. :D

Monday, September 28, 2009

Are you ready for some doughnuts?

On my way to work today I stopped by the bakery thrift store to pick up bread. My kids go through almost a loaf a day sometimes, so I've got to go cheap. Of course, I also make my own, but they don't like my bread and want the 'good' stuff, aka nasty, pasty generic white bread, so I go to the thrift store and stock up every couple weeks. While I was there, I saw they had boxes of doughnuts for $1 apiece and decided I'd be nice and buy a box for the guys at work. Then I thought I'd also be the worlds greatest mom and buy a box for the kids for an after school snack. Yeah, I'm da bomb. Angel #4, using her awesome math skills, figured out how many doughnuts each person can eat and I pity the fool who goes over their rationed amount.

Angel #2's cat caught ANOTHER rat this morning. That makes 4 in the last week. As much as I'm in favor of her depleting the rat population, I wish she wouldn't have to prove herself. Whenever she catches on, she lays it in the Angel's bedroom doorway, which thankfully, is outside, so she's not actually bringing dead rodents into the house. But, I have to walk right past that doorway to get to the washing machine as well as the rest of the basement. I go through there probably 5 or 6 times a day and seeing a dead rat lying right in my path is just not my cup of tea. And, due to my intense fear of rodents, even the dead ones, I can't even dispose of the stupid things, I just have to wait helplessly until someone gets home to deal with the nasty thing. Fortunately, hubby was still home this morning when I discovered it, so he tossed it into the brush and it was safe to go in the basement for another day.

I heard a story today that supports my feelings on nationalized healthcare. This June, when we were in Canada, I was talking to a friend who needed knee replacement surgery. She told me she's needed it for a year already but was on the waitlist for the surgery, which had to take place in a hospital 400 miles from where she lived because no doctors were available to do it in her area. Because of the long wait, she's also having back problems because of the way she had to walk to favor her bad leg. Flip-flop to a friend in the U.S. who also thought she may need knee surgery sometime soon. She called on Sept 21 for an appointment, got in to see the Dr on Sept 23 and she's going to have the surgery done so she'll be walking well when she goes to visit her children on December 22. My Canadian friend is hopefully getting in for her surgery on October 8. As messed up as it is, I'll take the US healthcare system ANY day.

Oh, remember the 16 glass glasses I bought a couple weeks ago? One broke in the dishwasher, so we're down to 15. I'll keep you updated on the survival rate of the remainder as time goes by.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

busy weekend

Yesterday, hubby asked if I wanted to go to a Toastmasters competition with him. I went and met some very nice, interesting people. He joined Toastmasters, a public speaking club, and has really been enjoying it. He'd talked a guy into entering the competition and wanted to go to the competition to give him support. When we got there, the organizer said that they needed another competitor in a different division and asked if he'd do it. He agreed to if they couldn't find someone else to do it. He ended up winning and is now going on to the statewide competition on Oahu next month.

Today, our family went to Hilo for church. They were having a baptism and 3 friends were being baptized. Usually it's rainy in Hilo, but it was like the day had been special ordered just for the occasion, it was warm and sunny and we couldn't have asked for anything more perfect. The baptism was held in the river near a waterfall and it was beautiful spot. Afterwards, we had a potluck, then we all sat and visited while our delicious meal digested. On the ride home, we stopped by Tex Drive-in for malasadas, which are Portuguese doughnuts. Tex's has the best malasadas on the island and it's tradition for our family to always pick some up if we're going by. Since it's about a 2 hour drive, we don't go past very often, which is probably good or we'd all weigh about 300 pounds.

Hubby bet WE $1million that he couldn't be absolutely quiet for 24 hours - he only made it 30 minutes, which is probably a good thing since we don't exactly have the million dollars to pay off the bet anyway.

Friday, September 25, 2009

You-ew, my brown eyed girl

Yesterday, Angel #2 soaked her contacts in red food coloring and went to school with red eyes. It was real nice, her eyes matched her tee-shirt. She freaked a few people out though, including some poor clerk at Dominoes when she went out for pizza with her friends. It was kind of gruesome looking. Then, she decided to dye them brown so she and her best friend could have matching eyes today at school. But, she left the contacts in the dye too long and they turned really dark, so she's going to school with black eyes today. She kind of looks like one of the demon people on the tv show Supernatural, except #2 actually has whites in her eyes, which makes her just weird-looking instead of evil. Though, if Dean and Sam want to come over here to check the situation out, I wouldn't stop them...just sayin' ;)

Tonight is the Homecoming football game at the kids' school. Angel #2 has to go play in the band and I guess we're going to the game. Though going to a Homecoming game isn't nearly as much fun if you're not actually in high school, it's pretty boring actually. I just want to watch some football, not see all kinds of gushy ceremonies and rabid teens trying to out-spirit the other grades in their school. It's usually really crowded then too, since the football games aren't the main social event for the students here that they are for most schools on the Mainland. There tends to be more adults there to watch the game than kids, except for Homecoming, where all the kids show up to hear how their classes ranked in the spirit competitions. Oh well, I'm sure it'll be fun anyway.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Who you gonna call?

Last night Angel #2 announced that she'd seen WE's ghost girl the other day. She saw a girl, dressed in nice clothes, standing under the mulberry tree in the back yard. She wasn't sure if it had been a noise or what that made her look over by the tree. She didn't give any more details either, so I don't know if the girl just disappeared or what. Now that 2 kids have seen her, it looks like it needs a little more investigating.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Welcome to the 21st century

I stopped by Safeway today to pick up a couple dozen eggs - we seem to go through them really quickly. They've added something to the store since I was there last week, self check-out aisles. These are the first of these kind of things I've seen in any of the stores on our island, I don't think they even have them at the new Target. I'd never used a self check-out before and since I only had 2 items, I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to try it out. It was fun playing store lady and bleeping and bagging my own items. I even managed to do it without needing the help of the employee they have standing there helping people get used to the new machines. I know these things are all over the place on the mainland, but we're just a bit behind the times here in the middle of the Pacific. We do catch up eventually though.

I just found out that the states solution to saving money is to have what they're calling "furlough days" at the schools. This means that, starting in the middle of October, there will be no school every other Friday. By doing a little math, I've already figured that the kids down here get 1 days worth of school LESS per WEEK than our kids got when we lived in Wisconsin. Now it's going to be even worse. Is it any wonder that Hawaii ranks in the bottom 5 in education among all 50 states? Angel #1 compares going to school down here like going to a commune hippy college vs. going to Harvard. He's also glad that high school diplomas are pretty generic and that employers don't put much stock in WHERE the diploma came from, otherwise, he'd be screwed. It's got to be pretty bad when a regular, just putting-his-time-in, high school kid is complaining about the quality of his education. Sad thing is, with the way this country is heading, it's going to get worse before it's ever going to get better.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

the sheep hits the fan

I ended up going to the football game Saturday with just the girls. Hubby and the boys all found something better to do. Our team pretty much dominated the game - it was to the point where I was hoping the opposition got some points so they wouldn't feel too badly during the 2 1/2 hour bus ride home they had ahead of them. Then ended up getting some points, though we still won 44-22 or something like that.

Our landlord brought over a huge bunch of bananas and they were all perfectly ripe and needed something done with them before the fruit flies took over. I ended up making 4 dozen banana muffins on sunday afternoon, the kids should be set for breakfast for a little while now. And I've still got enough bananas left to make a banana cream pie or two. Also, as a thanks to the landlord, I'm going to make him a mango pie tomorrow.

Yesterday, hubby went up to check on the sheep and found the mother sheep, Charlotte, dead. Charlotte was pretty stupid and she ended up strangling herself with a rope. Claudia and Charlie were pretty upset about seeing their mother in that state and spent a bit of time baaing pitiously, but they seemed to have gotten over it and were quiet today. Charlotte was the sheep I'd given a haircut to last week. Her wool was really gross and matted and we'd been waiting for her to calm down and get used to us before grooming her, but she was so spastic and the hair was getting so disgusting, that I had hubby hold her down while I gave her a cut. Guess I could have saved us some sheep wrestling if I'd have just waited, huh? Oh well, as least she made a well-groomed corpse.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

are you ready for some football?

Tonight we're going to the high school football game. It's against the next biggest school on the island and hopefully will be a good one. I'm going to remember to bring a butt pillow for hubby as well as myself this time since last game we went to, he gave me guilt feelings because he had to sit on the cement bleachers while I had the foresight to bring a pillow with me and he didn't.

Thursday there was a bomb scare at our Walmart. Someone had left a suspicious looking package next to the store with what could be construed as a threatening message written on it. The store was shut down for 7 hours before the bomb squad announced the box was safe. One of the bocce ball players works at Walmart collecting carts from the parking lot. I visit with him every time I see him there. Last night at practice I asked him how he felt and he said he was pretty scared. When I asked what he did when he found out about the threat, he said, "I ran real fast." I told him he did the smart thing. This particular guy has a special place in my heart. He's so sweet and soft-spoken, but what really clinched it was a couple weeks ago. I was chatting with him at Walmart a couple days after we'd done the Cop on Top Special Olympics fundraiser. I hadn't seen Ray there that weekend, so I asked if he'd been. He said he'd been there on Friday, which explained it since I was there on Thursday and Saturday. But it was what he said next that I loved. He told me that on Saturday he'd been "running at the hotel". I knew that there'd been a fun run for cancer at the 4 Seasons. I thought it was really neat that while we'd been raising funds for Ray, and people like him, because they needed the money for the Olympics, that he'd been out there raising funds for cancer. We thought he needed our help, while he was out there helping others. It all makes a full circle, doesn't it?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

another family milestone

I've decided to live my life dangerously. You know, spend a little time on the edge. Cut loose and be free. What crazy, devil-may-care thing have I done, you wonder? For the first time in 17 years, I have bought GLASS glasses for my family's use. I am willing to give my family the opportunity to drink from glass containers and not leave them shattered on the floor. No more Tupperware for this woman - uh-uh, we've now hit the big time. I have to admit that I didn't go too nuts and buy expensive ones or anything. Actually the ones I bought were even cheaper than the plastic ones I usually buy (we break those reguarly, if you want to know the truth). I may be brave, but I'm not a spendthrift - if we can keep the $2.50/pkg of 4 ones intact, maybe some day I'll actually buy nice ones. I think I'll save that for when the kids all move out of the house. But, then again, that's probably what MY parents thought when I was a kid, but to the best of my knowledge, the Smurf glasses we collected on a weekly basis from a Hardees promotion back in the '80's still have a promient place in their cupboard.

Yesterday I went to help with the bocce ball practice at the park for the Special Olympics. There's a bocce division where a special olympian teams up with a non-mentally handicapped partner for a team competition and they were in need for some more non-mentally handicapped participants. I filled out the proper paperwork and (here's something I never thought I'd say) I'm now an athlete in the Special Olympics. :D

Monday, September 14, 2009

Time to get out the Colgate

Angel #4 has been watching this 5 minute how-to show called Howdini on Hulu and has been paying special attention to the cake decorating ones. Today she decided to make a cake that looked like a pair of blue jeans. She talked her father into buying candy decorations and she used them heavily. So she made a strawberry flavored cake with cream cheese frosting and tons of Skittles and Good N' Plenties on them. I haven't even eaten a piece and my teeth are rotting.

Saturday night Angel #2 was out and told us that a boy was taking her home and she'd be here shortly. Soon after, a car pulled up at the end of the driveway. Explanation: Our driveway has a gate at the end which only opens via remote control, we also have a driveway that is a driving challenge in the best of situations and most people don't care to try it at night if they can help it. So, most people picking up/dropping off kids, just drop them at the end of the drive and the kid walks from there. Now, back to the story. Hubby notices the car at the end of the driveway and starts to think that maybe it's sitting down there with no outside action going on for a bit too long. But, he doesn't want to look like a psychotic, over-protective father (even though is kind of is one) so he wanders over by WE and whispers in his ear that he thinks #2 is making out at the end of the driveway and that WE should sneak down there and surprise her. Yeah, he's an evil dad. WE got about halfway down the drive when the car left w/out disgorging #2. False Alarm By this time though, WE can hear all the wild pigs that wander our yard snorting and grunting in the woods along the driveway and freaked out so when #2 and the boy really ARE at the end of the driveway for an inordinate amount of time, he won't go down there to 'surprise' them. Angel #2 should thank her lucky stars her brother's afraid of wild pigs.

#2 was also talking the other day about her unwillingness to empathize with others. She gets that from me whose attitude about complainers is that they should either suck it up or do something about it. She then tells me today that a friend of hers who thinks she's a bit of a princess complained on her MySpace status that she had "a horid day and it was all someone else's fault". My daughter, Miss Empathy, commented simply that she'd spelled horrid wrong. That's my girl!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

One of those days

Yesterday was one of those days. Angel #2 wanted to go to the fair and we told her we'd give her $20. Wristbands for unlimited rides were advertised for $20 and she decided to put all her money into getting a wristband and use her own savings for necessities like cotton candy and caramel apples. You can't buy wristbands at the fair, you have to get them online and once I finished jumping though all the stupid hoops to buy the dumb thing and having to pay all their stupid extra fees, that her $20 ticket ended up costing $25, what a rip-off.

That afternoon, I decided to check on the sheep and discovered that Claudia had gotten her rope rapped around a branch and was stuck tight to it. I couldn't untangle her and decided to just break the branch off. As soon as it snapped, Claudia freaked out and started running around the tree - effectively tying ME to the tree in the process. I honestly couldn't get out and every time I'd try to lure her closer so I could untangle myself, she ran again. Thank goodness WE was home and he could hear me yelling for help or I would have been wrapped around that tree for who knows how long. Dumb sheep.

Later on, I went to do a load of laundry and noticed the floor was wet by the washer. We'd just fixed a leak there, so I knew the floor should have been dry. Then I noticed that the 'water' was blue. I know that in all the pictures of Hawaii, you see beautiful blue water, but my laundry water looks just like yours, water-colored. Turns out one of my big 64oz bottles of laundry detergent sprung a leak and 3/4 of one was all over the floor, under the washing machine and running down the wall from the shelf where the bottle was. I wasn't sure how to go about cleaning it up, then inspiration struck. Our basement is open, so I figured I'd just drag the hose down there and hose off the detergent, sending it right outside. I started spraying and building up a pretty good sudsy foam when I noticed that despite the fact that we live in hurricane and flash flood country, the person who poured our basement floor never thought to pitch it at an angle so any water there would flow outside. It was all building up in a very hard to reach corner of the floor. After a bit of broom contortioning I finally got it cleaned up, but the floor is still a bit damp down there and now I'm out almost an entire bottle of laundry detergent.

Whenever I'm writing something on the computer and don't know how to spell something, I click on Google and start spelling it to the best of my abilities. Google, intelligent program that it is, figures out what I'm looking for and offers the correct spelling. I figured that was how most people cured their spelling problems now days. Not Hubby though, he's been writing something tonight and kept asking me how to spell things. I would do my Google thing, then give him the correct spelling. After the 4th interruption though, I told him to just Google the blasted thing and leave me alone. He told me that I should want to help him and make life easier for him. Angel #2 (who'd also helped him spell some things) finally gave him these inspired words of advice: Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day, teach him to Google and maybe he'll learn how to spell. Words to live by.

This entry is getting long and I still haven't told you all the latest news around here. I'll have to fill you in on WE's spy mission tomorrow if I remember. One more funny thing though. Remember a while ago I told you about the man named Dick Boner? I was talking to someone the other day and ol' Dick's name came up and my friend said he'd seen Dick the other day at the store, but couldn't remember his name so he avoided him so he wouldn't look stupid. My question is: How can you forget a name like Dick Boner?

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Huh?


This is an actual map the local paper had in explaining a detour going into effect next week. Is it just me, or is everyone else confused? Thing is, from what I read in the article, they're just reenacting the exact same detour we'd all been using for the last 6 months. Why not just say that? They'd opened the repaired road recently are are now reclosing it so they can put up power lines - though why in the heck they're just getting around to that now is anybody's guess. I read in the Wisconsin paper from where we used to live that the bridge construction they were doing was finished and they were going to open it two weeks early. Imagine that, EARLY! This little Palani Road addition they did, which involves about a half mile of road, has been in the works since 1997! Yep, 12 years to fix something that really only needed a stoplight put in in order to be more efficient. Some things never cease to amaze me.

The ducks discovered the water catchment tank in front of our house yesterday. It's the same big cement tank the kids swim in, and it's big - the size of an actual swimming pool. The ducks totally loved it, for the first time in their little ducky lives, they could swim and dive to their little hearts content. They even slept in it last night - it reminded me of when the kids were little and we'd stay at a hotel and have to drag them out of the pool at the end of the day. It was fun watching the ducks swim around, the problem is they're very verbal, even when they were just floating around if they weren't outright quacking, they were making that grunty kind of noise ducks make. The tank is under our bedroom window, so the ducks woke us up very early this morning. Poor Angel #1's bedroom door is about 5 steps from the tank (he sleeps in an enclosed area in our open basement) and was up at 5:30am yelling and throwing stuff at the dumb quackers. Of course, that didn't solve anything and he ended up moving his pillow and blanket up to WE's room and spent the rest of the morning sleeping up there. The ducks are going to get penned up tonight...it's either that or it's duck l'orange for supper tonight.

Friday, September 11, 2009

going to the fair

The fair is in town this weekend and the Angels are planning on going. It's not much, as far as fairs go. They're not even having animals there this year, so they can't call it the Big Island Family Farm Fair anymore, so now it's just the Big Island Fair. As Angel #2 said, it's just not the fair without a llama. We usually just dump the kids off there and have them call when they're ready to come home and we're going to do the same this year. Being at a hot, noisy, dusty fair isn't my idea of a good time - especially if there aren't any llamas.

You know the joke about the old timer giving someone directions by saying that you should turn right where Smith's barn used to be? For the first time ever, I heard someone give directions like that and he was serious. He told them to turn at the building after the one where Standard Kitchen Supply used to be. I about hurt myself laughing.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

this doesn't happen every day

I got paid to go shopping today. How awesome is that? Of course, it would have been even awesomer if I had something more exciting than carburator cleaner and motor oil on my list, but hey, can't argue when you're paying with someone else's money.

Winter's coming. I had to put a sweatshirt on this morning when I got up. Mid 60's is a bit chilly when you're used to warmer temps. Things got warmer as the day when on though and I was sweating again before you know it.

Friday, September 4, 2009

exciting bonus entry

I've mentioned before that I've got really long hair. After a shower I have to leave it hang loose for an hour or two so it dries enough for me to do something with it. This morning while it was hanging loose, I decided to transplant a couple pepper plants from the pot to the garden. I accidently buried some of my hair, people.

I do not recommend this as it defeats the whole purpose of showering in the first place. The End

Cops on Top

Yesterday afternoon Angel #4 and I did the Cops on Top fundraiser for the Special Olympics. There's a 20ft scaffolding set up in front of our local Safeway - and 4 or 5 of our guys in blue volunteer their time to spend Thurs morning through Saturday night on top, coming down only for stretch and bathroom breaks. The rest of us hang out down on the bottom and collect donations from shoppers. The guys have a sound system up there and played disco music the entire day - why disco? I dunno, but we were dancing to YMCA and Carwash, shaking our buckets and shaking down grocery shoppers for their cash. They also made use of the microphone, talking to people in the parking lot. One of the single cops was making it a point to talk to all the pretty girls - telling them if they want to call him to just dial 9-1-1. Yeah, he's a smooth operator all right.

Angel #4 collected about 5 times more money than me, she flashes that little blond haired blue eyed girl smile and, I'm not making this up, people would walk past me to put the money in her bucket. No surprise really, she's had 10 years experience getting things out of her father using her manipulating skills - at least now she's using her powers for good.

A damper was put on the festivities when we found out that one of our Big Island Olympians had died that morning. I don't know the details, but we decided to not tell the other atheletes working with us yesterday the news yet - I'm sure they were told last night after they got home.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

WWTP

There's a sign on the highway directing us to the WWTP. The road it points out doesn't seem to go anywhere (it's unfinished gravel with a gate across it - but for some reason, gets its own left turn arrow). Anyway, Angel #2 and I have enjoyed trying to figure out what WWTP stands for. Where Would Travis Pee was one of our suggestions, if you were wondering. But, ultimately, we've decided it stands for Whoa, What The Poop? Yes, we're juvenile, but we have fun.

I've got a busy week in WWTP land. Last night, after #4 have violin lessons, #2 and I headed out to the high school to participate in the drivers ed lottery. There are a limited number of spaces available and if they have more kids than spaces, they hold a lottery. Last year, there was room for 30 and 35 kids showed up, but fortunately, Angel #1 was one of the chosen ones. This year, there was space for 60 and 57 kids showed up. For some stupid reason, there has to be exactly 30 kids in each class or they won't hold it. A couple more kids trickled in as the meeting progressed, so it looks good. Angel #2 starts drivers ed the end of September. She's got to be to school by 7am, which will be a bit of a challenge for her, but it's only for a month and a half, so we should be good. Tonight is elementary PTO, which I somehow got myself involved in, after that is Bible Study. Tomorrow, I've volunteered to help with Cop on Top, which is where they erect scaffolding in front of the grocery store and cops hang out up on top while volunteers (aka me) stay at the bottom and collect money for the Special Olympics. That should be a fun time. I talked to one of our bocce ball players yesterday and he told me he and his partner took third in state a couple weeks ago in Oahu - so that was cool. I didn't feel so bad that he and his partner kicked my butt in bocce last month at a picnic we were at.

Monday, August 31, 2009

I just can't win

Today, Angel #2 told me she wants to live in a 'normal' family. When I asked what that meant, she said she wants to live like her friends families do - unlimited computer time, the mom doesn't make supper for the family (or, heaven forbid, make bread!), the family doesn't eat together and nobody has to do daily designated yardwork. I give her Leave It to Beaver and she wants dysfunctional family feud! I also find it hard to believe that we're the only family to eat meals together and expect our kids to abid by rules and do chores.

WE spent the night sleeping on the couch last night - he was nervous about the 'ghost' he saw. He's planning on sleeping in his room tonight though, so hopefully he's over the whole haunted room thing. Though I do want to thank you for informing me about the whole 'dead time' thing, Tanya - I'll sleep MUCH better knowing that (at least until 3am :P ) I figure if he's still nervous, we'll give the ghost girl a name and backstory (I'm a writer, how else do you think I deal with adversity? I make up stories), making the whole thing seem less scary. Hopefully, that'll make my little Haley Joel more comfortable in his room.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

it's time to call Ghost Hunters

WE claimed he saw a ghost in his bedroom last night. He said he woke up at 3:01 (he looked at his clock) and then saw a girl standing by his closet. He described what she was wearing, right down to her shoes and said she was motioning to him. Then she turned toward the closet and disappeared. He spent most of the rest of the night under the covers. That's all I need - ghosts in my house. Like I don't have enough to deal with in my life.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

baa baa fat sheep

Hubby managed to get free sheep. If you've got to get sheep, free is the way to go, I guess. It's a mother sheep and her two offspring. The mom is normal sized but the kids? Those are some fat sheep. They were the woman's pets and she obviously fed them well. She's moving back to the mainland, therefore, she's got to get rid of them. I'm just thankful she didn't talk hubby into taking the pot bellied pigs. The sheep should come in handy for clearing out the yard. Since we're on the side of a hill, it's much too steep for a lawn mower or anything like that and the weed wacker isn't really up to the job - I hope the sheep are.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

the life cycle of the feathered and famous

Well, it's been awhile again. Yeah, I'm a slacker. Let's see...what's happened since I talked to you last.....
One Sunday afternoon every month they close off our main thoroughfare downtown and open it up to foot traffic only. There's live music, arts and crafts booths and that kind of thing. We go every once in a while and we went on Sunday. It was the weirdest thing, one of the the first people we saw when we got there was the guy who was sitting right in front of us the night before at the football game. We'd never seen the guy before Saturday, and there he was, twice in the same 24 hour period. Small world

The other night, Angel #4 saved a little bird from the literal jaws of death - or the jaws of AK-47, WE's cat, which is as close to the jaws of death as a bird can get. She put the bird (she named it Mini-Spike) into a plastic crate then we ate supper. After supper, we noticed that the crate was empty and we couldn't find Mini-Spike at all. Later in the evening, Angel #1 spied him perched on the edge of a picture frame and he was put back into the crate. She put a board over the top of the crate so Mini-Spike couldn't escape again and went to bed. The next morning, Mouschie, Angel #2's cat, found Mini-Spike and had a mini-breakfast. All that was left of M-S was a pile of feathers, which #2 vacuumed up, obviously feeling guilty about her carnivorous cat. I guess Mini-Spikes rescue from the jaws of death was entirely shortlived. Talk about from the frying pan into the fire.

We live on a narrow, twisty mountain road. In some spots, you drive within a few feet of solid rock. The county (or someone) is trying to widen the road out in places and today they decided to do a spot by our driveway. So, all day today, there was a big dump truck sitting in the driveway next to a big excavator looking thing with a big jack hammer in the front. I got to listen to the rat-tat-tat of the jack hammer breaking up solid lava rock all day today. They keep working their way down the road, so tomorrow I imagine they'll be a little further down rat-tat-tatting again. It doesn't make for a peaceful day.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Saturday Night Lights

Last night was the first high school football game of the year. For some reason, they have games on some Saturday nights in addition to regular Friday night games. I'm not keen on Sat night games, but since Angel #2 has to play in the band for the games, we figured we might as well go. Our kids go to the biggest high school on the island and usually our football team dominates the games, which doesn't make for interesting football. Yeah, it's fun to see your team win, but it's always better when there's some question as to who will ultimately come out on top. But, this wasn't a regular season game and they played a visiting team from Maui instead of the usual big islanders. It was a good game, even if we got trounced 18-8. Angel #2 was happy, since she was rooting for the visitors - apparently, the guys on their team were cuter than the ones on her own high schools team. Yep, there's a bit of a lack of school loyalty going on. She said the biggest cheer the band let out was during a time-out when the band director tossed a peanut into the stands and managed to get it into some kids saxophone.

As usual, the best part of the game (imo anyway) is at the end of the game when the whole team lines up in front of the stands, holds hands and sing the school song for the crowd. This is followed up by the Haka. Here's a clip from last years homecoming.






I'm guessing you don't get that at the end of a football game on the Mainland - I know we didn't in MY hometown anyway. Another benefit of Hawaii football is that you go wearing shorts and flip flops instead of the winter coat, sweater, 3 pair of socks, mittens and other paraphernalia required for a Wisconsin high school football game. Going to HS games back then as a kid was fun, but there's no way you'd find me at one of those now if I needed to dress up like I was going on a voyage to the Artic Circle. I like watching my football as comfortably as possible, thank you very much.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Happy Statehood Day!

Today is statehood day here in Hawaii. This year we're celebrating 50 years as a state - if you want to call it celebrating. Nothing seems to be going on here, no parades or speeches or anything, just all the schools and libraries closed for the day. That doesn't sound like much of a holiday to me. There was a funny article in the paper telling about the first statehood day. Some government official was going to give a speech, then fireworks were going to be set off. It being 1959 and easy communication not available, one guy was supposed to keep in touch with the fireworks guys, telling them when the speaker was done so they could set off the fireworks. But, they ran out of dimes for the pay phone and had to resort to hand signals. There was a misunderstanding and they set the fireworks off right as the speaker started. But, that's not the best part. The fireworks went every direction but up, there were people diving off the pier into the water and hiding behind rocks to escape them. Now THAT'S the way to celebrate!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

I knew better than to talk to people

Last night was open house at Angel #4's elementary school. Getting into the spirit of the thing, I joined the PTO, then I made my mistake - I started talking to PTO members. Next thing you know, it looks like I volunteered to help. I kind of did it on purpose. I need to get out more and meet people, but I really hate leaving the house. I figured the PTO would be a great way to go, I can meet other people and I only have to go the 1/4 mile to the school to do it. If you've got to be a hermit that should leave the house, going only a quarter of a mile is the way to go. And, you never know, I just might meet some new friends. There's been a bit of a lack in my life with that since my coffee buddy moved back to Canada in June and my other friend moved to California last November. Life would be easier if my durn friends would just quit moving away!

I also want to rant over that stupid cash for clunkers program. They've been advertising it here (as I'm sure they are everywhere else) by positioning a dumpster in front of car dealerships and putting a "clunker" in it. Problem is, every clunker I've seen in the dumpsters is nicer looking than ANY of the vehicles we own. I find it horrific that they're taking perfectly good cars and destroying them supposedly for the environment's sake, just so they can use a bunch of resources to build new cars. How is that better for the environment? Except, from what I hear, most of the cars people are buying to replace their clunkers are foreign made. Maybe it's the governments super secret plot to destroy the environment of foreign countries by forcing them to make more cars for the US while keeping ours pristine. Yeah. Can anyone say Epic Fail?