Monday, December 30, 2013

Do they call this Indian Autumn?

You know how in the fall, you get the cold snap, then you get a few days where the weather is beautiful and you start thinking that maybe, just maybe, you might be in for a beautiful fall, then the ax falls again?  AKA Indian Summer    Well, we had Indian Autumn this weekend.  On Saturday, the temps rose to 40, the snow was melting, it was gorgeous outside (relatively speaking, of course).  I was just starting to think that maybe winter wasn't so bad after all.  Then today.   -13 when I got up this morning.  Yeah, that's a negative in front of that 13.  Yuck

We made good use of the beautiful weather though, burning tons of garbage that had been building up in the barn- no one wanted to go out and burn it before because it was too cold, windy and snowy out.  So, that got done.  The four of us also took an hour roadtrip to Weyauwega to check out a friend's new restaurant, Land of Ahhhs.  Very good food an awesome looking place and it was great to see her again.  We tend to only see her when Angel #1 is home on leave, the two of them have been friends since birth basically, and spend a lot of time together when they're able.

Yesterday, someone else was also making good use of the beautiful weather while we had it.  In addition to the snowmobiles out on the trails, we also saw a guy with a dog sled team.  WE has wanted to have a dog sled team forever and got all excited watching the guy mush his 8 dog team along the trails.  You don't see a whole lot of those here in Wisconsin.  WE's girlfriend told him she'd get him a team for his birthday, though I hope she waits for a birthday after his stint in the Marines is over, I really don't want to be responsible for a bunch of hyperactive dogs for 4 years while WE's out doing his thing for Uncle Sam.

We've had a quiet Christmas vacation.  The older and fewer  kids we have in the house, the quieter the school vacations are.  It doesn't seem that long ago when this place was complete chaos, with kids, mine and other people's, running all over the place, building amusement park rides in the basement and stealing my kitchen stuff to make science experiments.  Now they're off with friends, going to sports practices and events or just chilling on the computer.  Angel #4 and her friend started painting a wall in her bedroom the other day, but got about halfway through when her friend had to leave.  I've got the feeling she's going to have a white primer wall covered in blue painter's tape diamonds for a long time.  Oh well, at least she started it.  When I lived at home, there was no way in the world I would have been allowed to just impulsively paint my bedroom, one of the ways I drastically veered from my parents own parenting techniques.  I guess I don't see any harm in letting them do something like that and personally, I really don't give a rip what color their bedroom walls are.

But, since my kids don't really need me mothering them much anymore, I've got to focus my maternal instincts somewhere, so I just finished making snacks for my chickens.  The poor girls are out there in sub-zero temperatures, still faithfully laying eggs for me, so the least I can do is give them a treat once in awhile.  So I mixed up a delicious chicken cake of lard, cracked corn, dehydrated tomatoes & zucchini from last years garden with some leftover popcorn and eggs shells to top it all off.  It's hardening on the porch right now and I'll take it out to them this afternoon.  They're going to love me.

Friday, December 20, 2013

I think things are going to slow down a bit finally

It's been kind of crazy around here.  For me, busy = crazy    This week alone, I've gone to 2 basketball games (I HATE basketball, but I needed to haul kids there so I stayed and hung with my friends), a wrestling meet, a work party and I did some contract office work for a neighboring school district one evening.  Tonight, we stay home.  YAY!  But, tomorrow, we head out early for an all day wrestling tournament.  WE's been doing pretty good wrestling.  He's lost more than he's won, but all three of his wins were pins, which is pretty good.  Last night, he pinned his guy in 31 seconds, he was pretty stinking proud of himself.

Unless things warm up considerably in the next couple days, we're definitely having a white Christmas here in Wisconsin.  There's a dumping scheduled for tomorrow night and into Sunday, which may cramp our Sunday plans a bit.  We've got an all day church meeting, but under good conditions, we've got a 45 minute drive, if there are crappy roads, we'll just stay home where it's safe.  I don't know how God thinks, but I can only assume that he'd rather we stay home and miss church rather than drive around endangering ourselves and others on icy roads.  We'll see what the weather brings and go on from there.

Though I've been busy, I haven't really been doing anything exciting or interesting.  I seem to be spending a lot of time in high school gyms watching sporty stuff, which is better than huddling on freezing cold bleachers outside watching sporty stuff, so I look on the bright side there.  School's out now for the holidays, today was only a half day, so we can all be bums until Jan 2 when we head back to school/work.

That's about it, I guess.  I just thought I'd post so you all knew I was still alive and kicking.  :)

Friday, December 6, 2013

There's a bit of a learning curve

Last night we went to WE's very first wrestling meet.  I know zippo about wrestling besides what I saw Hulk Hogan do back in the 80's, so I'm pretty lost.  It just looks like 2 kids rolling around on a mat to me, but everyone else in the crowd seemed to know what was going on.  WE lost his match, but at least he wasn't pinned, so that was good.  He also surprised his opponent with an unconventional jumping move.  One of the few advantages he's got over the other kids is that because he hasn't been wrestling (besides on the living room floor with his brother) since he was a little kid, he doesn't know all the regular ways to wrestle, so he's got his own little spin on things, which may help keep the element of surprise in his favor.  We'll have to see.  There's an all day tournament on Saturday we're  going to, we'll see how he does.

Things are chilling out around here, it was 5 degrees this morning when I got up.  yuck!  And it's only the beginning of December, we've got a good 4 months of this ahead of us yet.  I do NOT approve.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

a whole decade!!

I was thinking about it, then decided to actually look it up and I was right.  As of yesterday, I have been officially blogging for an entire decade. My very first blog post was November 27, 2003, which happened to be Thanksgiving day. Of course, back in those days, I don't think blogging was actually a term yet, we just called in online journaling.  Things were a bit different for me back then as well.  I had four kids still living at home, the oldest one was only 11.  We lived in a much nicer and bigger house in a town an hour and a half drive away from where we live now.  I dealt with dogs, cats, hamsters, gerbils and various birds in the house and a giant basement playroom full of toys.  GI Joes parachuted off my roof using Walmart bags, Barbie had prom in the living room and I regularly stepped on Legos as I walked down the hallway.  Oh, the good old days...I don't miss them.  I'm so thankful for my grown and nearly grown children, though I do wish my away from home kids were here with us today.

I spoke to Angel #2 this morning, she's not doing anything special for the holiday besides having a potluck at work. I'm not sure where Angel #1 even is.  He called a week ago saying he was leaving Kuwait and didn't know where he was headed next, so I think he's out on the ocean somewhere.  It would be nice to receive a Thanksgiving call from him, but I'm not holding my breath.

Anyway, happy Blogiversary to me!

It snowing here at the moment.  It's not our first snow of the year, we had that ages ago.  The first snow that stuck was about a week ago, we've had snow in the driveway for quite awhile now.  The plows went past the house twice this morning before 8, they were doing more sanding/salting than plowing, trying to keep things non-slippery for the holiday on the road crowd.  There's nothing worse than greasy roads on a holiday, I always worry about everyone going to and from when the weather's bad.  Welcome to winter, people.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Deer Hunting Widows Weekend

The Dr Who 50th anniversary special was pretty awesome.  They even brought together all 13 Doctors, both alive and dead in one of the final scenes, which was pretty stinking incredible.  Though I didn't cry at spots like my neighbor Becky did  She's a bit more emotionally invested in the Doctor than I am, apparently.  We made Dr Who munchies like Tardis Pizza, Ood sweet rolls, fish fingers & custard and washed it all down with sonic screwdrivers...none of which make sense to non-Whovians, but the rest of you can well imagine how fun the table was.

After Who-fest, hubs and I went to a deer hunters widow comedy show.  This was the opening day of deer hunting season, the guys all go to deer camp while their wives go out on the town with friends.  Hubs doesn't do much  hunting, so we went to the show together instead.  We also brought along my friend Monica from work and met my other friend Connie, along with her brother & sister at the club.  It was a great time and we'll probably go again for the Valentine's day show they're having in February.

It looks like our barn kitty, Tuna, is feeling  better from whatever was bothering her last week.  I'm pretty hopeful she'll be all right after her drooling fit.  Poor little thing is so lonely up there in the hay mow by herself though.  She was all by herself last winter and never wanted us to leave when we went up to feed her.  After she had her kittens, we decided to keep one so she wouldn't be lonely again this year, but now that Bana died, she's all alone again.  I'm tempted to pick up one of the free, fixed cats that humane society gives away, they're the feral cats that are caught, but can't be tamed for house cats.  They give them to people for their barns.  My fear is that Tuna won't get along with the other cat (or vice-versa) and she'll be even more miserable than she already is.  Animal dynamics are so confusing.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

 Jeanie_C said...
"... the boys were goofing around during practice and Kyle received a severe concussion."
I want to know the rest of this story.
Well Jeanie, you had boys, so chances are you won't have too hard of a time filling in the blanks.  Last fall, either during or after practice, depending on who you talk to, the boys were wrestling around in front of the school.  One of the boys had Kyle and somehow dropped him on his head.  They didn't realize anything was wrong until that night when Kyle came out of his bedroom and told his parents there was water running down his bedroom walls.  Since his room was bone dry, his folks knew there was something going on and it turned out that the drop on his head gave him a really bad concussion.  Last year was a bad year for concussions on the cross country team, not only did Kyle receive one, but Joel received two, one when he staggered into another kids as they were crossing the finish line and they knocked heads really hard and the other one during practice when he was driving  his car to the big hill where they practice at and his brakes went out and he got in an accident.  I think the cross country team had more concussions than the football team that year.  Who knew XC was such a dangerous sport???

Hubs found our little barn kitty, Bana-katta-lotta dead up in the hay mow yesterday.  We suspect she got into some rat poison since there wasn't a mark on her.  This morning, our other barn kitty, Tuna Catterole was drooling and slobbering real bad, so I think she got into the same stuff that killed her daughter.  I'm hoping she'll be alright, she's a sweet little cat, but I'm not too optimistic.

Our neighbor brought season 7 dvd's of Dr Who over on Sunday and Angel #4 and I have been having a Whovian film festival this week trying to catch up for the big world premier of the 50th anniversary special airing on Saturday.  We going over to the neighbors to watch it at her house (she's got a full sized Tardis in her son's bedroom) and planning on bringing some Dr Who related snack foods for munchies.  There's going to be a new Dr for season 8, which I'm a little hesitant about.  It's always difficult getting used to a new Doctor, but hopefully I'll soon love him as much as I loved Dr's #9, 10 & 11.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Letters and Panthers

Last night was the fall sports award ceremony.  The coaches got a bit long-winded so it lasted about an hour and a half, but the longest talking coach was the football coach and the guys had such a great season, that I guess I'll cut him a little slack.  Part of the problem is that the ceremony recognizes the seniors and there were a dozen seniors on the football team, and since each one was highlighted, he had a lot of highlighting to do.  Angel #4 received her first letter - apparently, football managers letter each year they manage, which no one thinks is really fair, but it's the way it goes, so she's got a letter under her belt.  Our homecoming court is decided based on how many letters someone has plus their GPA, so we were joking that this is her first step toward homecoming queen.  Since there are only 3 freshman girls who lettered, she's well on her way.

Also mentioned last night was the infamous pink night football announcer flub-up.  One football game was dedicated to breast cancer awareness, with raffles, the football players wearing pink socks, etc.  Trying to drum  up more business for the raffle tickets, the game announcer said:  this is  your last chance to buy raffle tickets for breast awareness.   Once he heard the crowd burst into laughter, he red-facededly corrected it to breast CANCER awareness.

WE's girlfriend won the Panther Award for girls volleyball.  The Panther Award goes to a person who may not be the best on the team, but who is an inspiration, a good team supporter and just a general asset to the team in terms of morale.  She definitely deserved it.  She's been in volley ball, basket ball & track all through high school, but she isn't very good (except in volleyball, but the coach is an idiot who wouldn't put her out on the court because she plays favorites).  Because of not being real good, she's never lettered in any of her sports.  Last night she got her first letter in addition to the Panther Award, we were all so proud of her.

WE didn't win any particular awards in cross country, besides lettering.  But as the teams co-captain, and a senior, he was singled out last night as well.  He and his fellow captain dressed to the nines in dress shirts, nice pants and even ties - and absolutely identically right down to their white belts.  The cross kids were all dressed up really nice and I was so proud of what an awesome group of kids they are.  WE even said the same thing on the way home, expressing  how much he loves the cross country freshmen (8 out of 19 kids on the team are freshmen) and what a cool group of kids they are.  One I was particularly glad to see walk out with both a letter and a most improved player award was a boy named Kyle.  Kyle's been in cross since middle school, he's a junior now.  He's always struggled and came in last in most of his races,but kept pushing on regardless.  Last year during cross, the boys were goofing around during practice and Kyle received a severe concussion.  He's never been mentally the same since and his parents have brought him to doctors all over the country in an effort to get him help.  As a result, things are just a little bit harder for Kyle since then, he has weird episodes where he just spaces out and he also gets frustrated because he knows he used to catch on to things much easier in the past than he does now.  Anyway, all last summer, Kyle's been out running, 6 days a week, every week.  Since the concussion, he's also struggled with dealing with heat, which made running all the more difficult.  He had a little bit of a problem with the first couple cross country meets, mainly because it was pretty warm outside, but as the season went on, he kept doing better and better.  Since last year's season, he's knocked 2 1/2 minutes per MILE off his time!  Is that incredible or what?  I know I was so proud to see him walk up there and get the MIP award, I can only imagine how his parents felt.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

the doctor is NOT in

I am pleased to announce that finally, after 23 years, the voice hubs hears in his head is MINE.  I'm the cheap one in our relationship.  I try to find good deals, I do without if something isn't absolutely necessary and, if I give in to an impulse buy, they usually tend to be fairly economical and practical (except for peanut M&M's).  Hubs, not so much.  He tends to come home with some pretty crazy stuff sometimes.  There are times I think he goes to the dump and his truck is heavier coming out than going in, and I won't even talk about the four 1960's era beauty shop hair dryers currently sitting in one of our sheds.  Well, today he was telling me that he listened to me in a situation and didn't buy something and now he was regretting it.  What I asked what it was, he said it was the dwarf costume.  I didn't have a clue what he was talking about and told him so and he said that he didn't actually talk to me about it, he just heard my voice in his head telling him it was a stupid purchase, so he resisted the urge to buy it, and now, the next day, he was experience non-buyers remorse.  His buddy down in Hawaii had a bunch of costumes, the kinds with the big heads and stuff like they have at Disney World and he wanted to sell them.  One of them was Doc, one of Snow White's dwarfs and he really really wanted the Doc costume but passed by because of my voice in his head.  He had second thoughts the following day and went back to his buddy and by then, he'd sold the whole lot to some guy from Maui who picked them all up this morning.  Hubs is pretty disappointed - he had planned on wearing it while going through TSA at the airport. I, on the other hand, just sighed in relief.

My van is still in the shop after over a week. The first two days I was using a loaner car, but since then, I've been driving hubs truck, the Deathmobile.  I don't like driving his truck, I'm not sure if it's because there's a hole in the floor and I can see the road rushing past beneath my feet, or if it's the missing driver's side door handle which necessitates opening the door with a wire, or maybe it's because the shifter knob comes off in my hand whenever I put the truck into 2nd gear, all I know is that I really want my van back.

Saturday night, Angel #4, Rent-a-Grandma and I went to the high school fall play.  They were doing The Oz Monologues and it was pretty darn funny.  I was even more impressed with the production when I found out one of the actors bailed out of the show two days before opening night and the kids had to improvise.  When it's the Wizard of Oz and the Tin Man bails, it's a pretty big speed bump, but the kids did a great job, flawlessly inserting into the play why the Tin Man was MIA and I had no idea it wasn't part of the original script until #4 told me about it afterwards.  Coincidentally (or not) the Tin Man was the exact same girl who bailed out at the last minute when she was supposed to sing the National Anthem with #4 before a volleyball game last month.  I'm sensing a definite pattern here.  I mentioned it to my friend, Connie, who directs the Senior play every year, so she'll know to keep Lexi out of any major roles if she doesn't want any surprises with that production.  All the talent in the world doesn't compensate for being unreliable.  Marilyn Monroe may have gotten away with it, but until you're Marilyn Monroe, it's probably best that you adhere to your commitments.

Monday, November 4, 2013

wow, what a week! Thank goodness it's over

In the past week there was some major craziness going on at/to our house.  It started on Monday morning when hubs picked up a lift so we could put a new roof on our house.  The original plan was he would put the new metal roof right over top of the existing shingles.  But, it turns out there were not three, but FOUR layers of shingles on the roof, the bottom layer we believe are the original cedar shingles from the mid-1800's when the house was built.  The shingles were just too thick and warped to evenly nail the 2x4's on to put on the metal roof, so the guys ended up having to scrape 2 layers off the roof so the new one could get put on decently.  So there was a little unexpected work.  They worked their butts off, especially hubs, and managed to put the last of the roof on Friday in the rain.  It also poured on Thursday, all told, about 4 inches in 2 days.  The chimney flashing and soffits aren't up yet, but the main part is up and looks all nice and red and shiny.   Since we had the lift, hubs wanted to get as much use out of it as possible, so after the roof guys would leave for the day, he'd keep on working.  By last night, we had the 4 windows in the upstairs bedrooms replaced (one of them was also probably pretty close to original to the house) all the top layer of oh so healthy asbestos siding taken off the sides of the house.  They also got the lower layer of cedar siding, the tar paper and some weird kind of paper layer torn off the top half our house - our house is a house of many layers, apparently.  Once we got down to the original logs or boards, depending on what part of the house we were doing, we put that house wrap stuff up as well as some board insulation.  That's only on the top half of the house, the bottom half will just have to wait until we've got the time.  While hubs and WE were doing that, Angel #4 and I spent a fun filled couple of days picking up tons of shingles, siding, tar paper and nails up out of the yard.  We don't have it all picked up yet, but we're getting there.  It would be easier if it wasn't so stinking cold and windy outside.

Hubs headed out to Hawaii this morning and I thought the craziness would stop for awhile.  Oh, how foolish I was.  We were about 5 miles from the airport when the transmission slipped out of gear in our van.  It got worse and worse and we were afraid we wouldn't get to the airport, but fortunately, we pretty much coasted to a final stop right in front of the departures entrance to the airport.  I got hubs on the plane and called the tow truck guy.  So yeah, I got to ride home in a tow truck this morning.  Not quite the plan.  The guy brought it to our local garage, but after looking at it, they decided it was definitely the transmission, so they had to continue towing it on to the transmission place where a mere 2 years ago, I spent $2500 getting a new transmission put in.  Hopefully they'll honor the warranty without any issues, and if I'm lucky, they'll even pitch in to pay for the $300+ towing bill I've got.  It looks like it'll probably be at least a week before I can even get the van back.  I've got a loner car from the garage, but I'm sure they'd like that back asap.  Our truck is currently filled with about a ton of shingles and crap - the landfill put the wrong closing time on their website, so when hubs showed up to dump the garbage from the house project, they were already closed.  The garbage is too heavy for me to unload on my own, so our only option is for WE and I to head to the dump at 7 tomorrow morning and get rid of it then so we've got a vehicle to drive.  There's also a trailer full of garbage that also needs unloading, that one will have to wait until Wednesday when the kids have a half day of school and WE can get one of his friends to help him empty that one out.  Sigh,  things can be so complicated.

But, on the plus side, my new roof is SOOOO pretty.  :)

Friday, October 25, 2013

starting my career as the town crazy lazy

We don't have trees in our yard, at least not big ones that leaves piles of leaves all over the place.  So, it's nice that we don't have to rake or anything, but, the best insulation for the floor of my chicken coop is dead leaves.  Last year I swiped some from the curb at some random person's house.  This year, I decided to go a little bit mainstream and not actually steal leaves from residential neighborhoods.  So, I went to the town compost pile and swiped my leaves from there.  I had concerns that someone was going to report that a crazy lady was taking leaves from the compost bin, so I called the town clerk lady to make sure that I wouldn't get arrested or something.  

Last night, Angel #4 had her belated birthday celebration. She's been wanting to have a sleepover and take her friends to one of the haunted houses, but with Friday nights being full of football and Saturday night sleepovers not done here, it was getting difficult to plan something.  Finally, we've had 2 days off of school, so they all came over Thursday afternoon, watched a scary movie to get them in the mood, then I took the girls to the haunted house.  Things got off a little rockily when she accidentally ordered the wrong scary movie.  She thought she was ordering the later version of My Bloody Valentine, but instead ended up with the original 1981 version.  Those movies may have been scary then, but 30+ years later, no one could get past the weird clothes and funny they added their own commentary, making it more of a comedy than a slasher flick.  Things got better once they got to Insanity, the name of the haunted house.  I waited for them in the car, since I wasn't real interested in doing the haunted house thing and didn't see the point in buying another $14 ticket if I didn't have to.  It sounded like they had a wonderfully scary time, but we needed to go out for ice cream afterwards to sooth their throats, which were raw from all the screaming they did.

Tonight is the first football playoff game.  It's over an hour away, so hubs and I are staying home where it's warm and let the kids go freeze their butts off instead.  I hope they do well, though Angel #4 is ready for the season to be over, it's getting colder and colder out and she's tired of freezing to death during practices.  Of course, she could dress warmer, but she's a teenager and it's better to look cool and freeze than to dress sensibly.  My theory is that eventually, around 20 years old, the stupid gets frozen out of them and they start dressing for the weather.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

it's bloody, messy....and done!

We were only going to do a few chickens yesterday, but the weather was decent and days of decent temperatures ahead are very few, so the great chicken massacre of 2013 commenced.  After picking and plucking on the first chicken forever, we realized that we were going to be butchering forever at that pace, so we decided to just skin the suckers and get it over with.  Once we started doing that, things really got rolling.  Angel #4 tried really hard to book her day with away from home tasks, she volunteered at a brat fry, but her timing sucked and she got home about half an hour before we started chopping heads, so she got put on the chicken assembly line along with me, hubs and WE.  Between the 4 of us, we butchered up 24 chickens, the whole broiler flock. I'm so happy that chore is done with, though it was completely exhausting.  We started around 1:30pm and I was finally scrubbing chicken gore off the kitchen floor around 8:30.  We don't eat the heart, liver and gizzards, but our friend who is paying us for half the chickens, does, so I had to clean that stuff up as well.  Once clean, I put them on cookie sheets and individually froze them that way so I could just bag the whole mess up in one bag.  WE didn't think it was hilarious that I sang Jar of Hearts as I was carrying a bowl of chicken hearts around the kitchen.  I swear, teenagers have absolutely NO sense of humor.

It's nice to have one more pre-winter project over with.  Hubs sealed up the basement doors and windows today, so that's done as well.  I've just got Brussels sprouts to get out of the garden yet and that'll be cleaned out.  I've still got to clean out the chicken coops, both the newly emptied one and the one where the layer hens live, and put that mess out on the garden so it's all nice and composted for next spring.  The corn was pretty sickly looking this year, a good dose of chicken crap will do wonders for it next year.  Slowly, we're getting ready for old man winter.  It would have been nice to have a garage to park my van in this winter, but that didn't happen.  We've still got a few chunks of the blown away garage lying in the back yard in the burn pile.  There just isn't enough time or money to get everything done before the snow flies.  Sometimes I wonder why we moved away from Hawaii.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

a wet end to the regular season

Last night was cold, rainy and parent's night for the football team, so I couldn't get out of going  to the game.  And once I'm there, holding my team parent orange carnation, sitting all cold and wet in the stands, it doesn't pay to leave until the game is over.  Especially when out team dominated the game with a final score of 40-0.  Despite freezing in the bleachers, it's kind of fun watching wet sloppy games because stuff happens that isn't the norm, like the huge pile of guys on the 10 yard line, struggling for the ball, only to see the object of their attention pop up into the air right from the middle of the pile of boys (we recovered).  Along with it being parent's night, it's also a night for honoring the senior football players and managers.  As a special surprise, Sarah, the senior girl who's been managing the team since her freshman year, suited up for the 2nd half of the game.  Sarah's step-dad is one of the coaches and didn't know any of this was going to happen until she ran out on the field in uniform with the rest of the guys after the half.  She got to go out and make a field goal attempt, she didn't get it, but was thrilled to finally get the chance to be on the other side of the water bottles for a change.  Now Angel #4 can't wait for her senior year so she gets her chance out on the field.

WE ran his last cross-county race Thursday night at the conference meet.  He's not much of a distance runner, his gift is sprinting, so his xc times aren't that great. In fact, he didn't qualify to run varsity on Thursday, but one of the Freshman boys, who DID qualify, told the coach that he met all his goals for xc for the year and he wanted to give up his spot on the varsity team so WE could run, because it was only right that as a senior, he should run varsity at his last race.  Is that awesome or what?  The whole xc team is like that, a really close, good group of kids.  Their coach aka "Coach Dad" is an upright, Godly man who really loves the kids and the kids love him right back.  This is his second year coaching cross and he's doubled the number of kids in the program in that time and I can easily see it getting even bigger as the xc kids keep bragging up their coach and their sport to the other kids in school.  Even Angel #4 said she'd love to be on cross country, if only there wasn't so much running. :p  There's a lot of inner-sport friction on the girls volley ball team (that's why #4 didn't go out for vb this year in the first place) and I know there are some girls considering switching sports to get out of the middle of the drama.  Players may make the team, but I think it's the attitude of the coach that makes the players.

This afternoon we're planning on holding a chicken massacre.  I'm sure that's going to be a good time.  Ideally, I'd like to butcher up the whole flock of broilers, they're all ready for it (size wise - mentally, I think they'd prefer to stick around awhile), but we don't have an automatic chicken plucker this year like we did last, and I really don't think I'm up to manually pulling feathers on 24 chickens in one day.  It was exhausting enough doing 50 last year when we had a plucker doing the hard part for us.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

an update on life

I was reminded by hubs that there's no way he'll be able to keep track of what's going on in our life if I don't start posting here.  I've been here a couple of times, but honestly couldn't think of anything earth shattering to share with you.

Funny Voice Friday was a success in the lunch room last week.  The kids and I have come up with a new one now and next on the agenda is Robot Voice Wednesday.  There was some confusion and some kids thought it was Sing Along Thursday, so there was a little unauthorized singing going on.  It's been requested that I put what day we're going to have right on the school menu calendar so they can keep track.  But, since I only do this with the 3rd, 4th & 5th graders, I think that would cause a little confusion among the rest of the school district.

Angel #4 was asked to sing the National Anthem at the girls volleyball game this week.  She'd never had to do that before and said she would under the condition that she did it with someone else.  A girl named Lexi said she'd do it with her.  We brought #4 to the game and Lexi met us as the door and the two girls ran off.  About 15 minutes later, it was time to get things started.  Hubs and I were in the stands and saw #4 by the microphone, standing along, looking around anxiously.  Lexi had disappeared and a VERY nervous #4 ended up singing a solo.  She started out a little shaky, but within a couple of lines, she got in the swing of things and did a beautiful job....sadly, she didn't think so and right after she was done, she boogied out of the gym and went outside crying.  Because she was outside, she didn't see the tons of people who came up to us an said they didn't realize she had such a wonderful voice and what a great job she did.  Even WE came over an told us what a great job he thought his sister did.  Eventually she came back inside and hopefully, now that she's had to do the solo trial by fire, she'll have more confidence next time she's asked to sing.  It's a small school and there are a lot of sports events that need the anthem sung, so I'm sure she'll have more than enough chances to wow everyone with her voice in the next 4 years of high school.

It's also #4's birthday today.  My little, youngest baby is 15 years old today.  To me, a kid doesn't seem like a real teenager until they hit 15.  13 & 14 are only a warm-up toward the real thing.  We didn't do anything special today, we just went and picked up a cake at Cravings, our favorite bakery/cafe and got some lunch there.  Next weekend she wants to go with a couple of her friends to Splatterhaus, a haunted house to get the crap scared out of them.  Friday night is the last regular season football game as well as it being parent's night.  Since #4 is a team manager, we've got to be there to get our orange carnation along with all the football players parents.  Maybe after the game I'll buzz the kids over there to get it all over with.  We've had beautiful weather for football games so far this year, the only crappy night being an away game, so I got away with not having to go.  I'm strictly a fair-weather football fan.  Our team clinched a spot in the playoffs, so who know just how long football season may end up being.  Not that it matters too much to me.  If I've got to drive further than a half hour or the temps are too low or it's raining, the Panthers are just going to have to play without me.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

It's hard to be evil

Last year, when I was the lunch lady goddess, ruler of all I surveyed, a particularly favorite form of kid torture I implemented was "Sing-Along Thursdays", where I had the kids sing their lunch numbers to me instead of simply saying them.  The biggest of Sing-Along Thursdays was the very last day of school.  I'd kind of forgotten about them over the summer until a couple days ago, when one of the 5th graders asked if we could have another Sing Along Thursday.  I guess the kids were actually enjoying the torture I was meting out.  My evilness was foiled again!  So, today was the first Sing Along Thursday of the school year.  I'll probably unofficially schedule them about once a month, just to keep the hungry little critters on their toes.  But not all the kids sang.  Some refuse to participate, so, of course I give them a hard time.  I even initiate a little competition, telling the 4th graders that the 5th graders do a much better job or that the boys sing better than the girls.  Some kids, instead of singing, just sort of used weird voices and I said, this is Sing Along Thursday, not Funny Voice Friday....which gave me an idea and a new and improved method of torture.  Next week Friday is our first official Funny Voice Friday!  I warned the kids and told them they'd better start practicing now.

Today was our only home cross country meet of the year, so of course, I had to go.  To get the most out of a XC meet, the bystanders have to do a bit of running around themselves.  We cheer at one spot, then cut across to another spot so we can cheer the kids on some more,  Then we boogie on down toward the finish line to do a final bit of encouragement to help the kids get over the line.  One of our freshman girls is an exceptional runner and she broke the school girls XC record while a 2nd freshman girl managed to get on the record board at #7.  They were both pretty darn excited.  The boys team is doing well also, though not as good as the girls.  As WE ran by, I shouted to him that he had to run hard or run home...I think he wasted precious running energy to roll his eyes at me.  He ran good...not great, but good. No PR's (personal record) for him this week, but he'd just PR'd last week, so I guess I'll have to cut him a little slack.

On a more sobering note, I'm having a stinking hard time keeping chickens alive lately.  My layer chickens (aka, The Ladies) are doing fine, but the meat birds (aka The Kids) are dropping like flies.  The meat birds are a pain in the butt to raise and they're pretty touchy, health-wise, and I've decided next year to raise a slower growing, but less fragile breed of chicken.  As it is, I've been losing a bird just about every other day for the last week or so.  It's gotten so bad I've got a designated 'dead chicken bucket' in the barn that I use to keep the corpses until I have a chance to get rid of them.  I feel like a Haitian voodoo priestess, dumping dead chickens all over the place like I'm putting some kind of curse on somebody.  We started out with 40 chicks on Aug 6 and at the moment, we've got only 28 left.  At this rate, I don't know if we'll have any chickens survive long enough for us to kill them.  It's a hard knock life for chickens.

Monday, September 30, 2013

The crazy week is over

Homecoming is finally over and life can return to normal.  Angel #4 gave me a report on the Friday afternoon school pep assembly.  It starts out with all the percussionists in the band getting their drums and beating a (very loud) cadence through the halls of the school.  #4 is a drummer and she said it was so fun just giving it all on the drums in the halls right in the middle of a school day.  As they go past each of the classrooms, the kids in the class get up and out of the room and follow the drummers down the hall.  Once the drummers have covered every hall in the school, they head outside and lead a parade of all the kids down the street to the football field.

Each of the sports coaches announce the kids on the fall sports teams.  The cross country coach announced all the kids on the team except for WE, then he was on a roll.  He said that WE was the reason he was a coach, not only that, he was the reason he got up in the morning and brushed his teeth.  He went on and on, ridiculously praising WE until he had everyone in stitches.  The coach later told me he couldn't pass by such a great opportunity to embarrass WE, I told him WE does a great job of that all by himself.

Which brings us to the announcement of homecoming court.  They announced each couple, who then proceeded to walk arm-in-arm past the kids in the bleachers...until they got to WE and Katie, the girl he stood up with.  Instead of walking past the crowd, those two did cartwheels.  I didn't even know WE could do a cartwheel, but Angel #4 said he did better ones than Katie.  Afterwards, WE told me that he's famous for his cartwheels and gets frequent cartwheel requests at school.  My kid is so weird.

The football team won their game, the first homecoming game they've won in 4 years.  They've now clinched their spot in the playoffs, so I guess I'll be hauling Angel #4 home from football practice for awhile yet.  Afterwards there was a big bonfire for the kids out behind the football field.

The kids had a great time at the Homecoming dance with one glitch.  I guess I should have stuck to my gut instinct on the Homecoming dance issue.  I was coming down with a cold, it was pouring rain and I really wanted to just be in bed, but I ended up going to the dance around 10pm to do the mother/son dance thing.  First off, I was shocked at how many parents were there, probably almost as many parents as kids.  Not just parents of kids on the court either, but people whose kids were younger and just at the dance to have a good time.  Why on earth would grown adults spend their Saturday nights at a high school dance creeping on their kids?  Really people, you should get a life and let your kids have theirs.  I have no problem with people being involved in their kids lives, they should be.  But, there comes a time when you have to keep your nose out of things, you had your chance to dance at homecoming 30 years ago, now you need to let your kids do the same without you hovering over them.  Which brings me to the parent/senior dance.  After the crowning, the DJ announced that the seniors should go out on the floor and be joined by their parent for a special dance.  Boy, you want to see a bunch of pissed off kids!  First off, the parent who decided to start this new tradition didn't bother telling all the senior parents about it because they assumed that everyone would already be at the dance because they were as obsessed about their kids lives as they were.  Secondly, on homecoming court alone, there were two kids whose parents were dead, in WE's girlfriend's case, only about 2 months had passed.  She walked off the floor in tears.  Fortunately, the principal had already swooped in and started dancing with her and another teacher danced with the boy whose mother had died, but he spent the dance in tears as well.  I'm not sure about the other kids with parents who had died, I know of one other one in the senior class for sure.  It just seems pretty selfish to me that some mother who wanted to dance at her son's homecoming managed to put a huge dark blot on so many other peoples party.  I guess it's no wonder the kids leave the dance right after the crowning to go to the afterparties.  They do it just to get out from under their parents eagle eyes.  The afterparties are nice.  The tradition is that each grade has a party at some kids house, the parents open up their basement or rec room and then fade off.  They're around to make sure bad stuff like drinking doesn't happen, but don't interfere in any other way.  The kids spend the night, either all like puppies lying all over the floor, or the split up in boy/girl groups and one group goes to someone else's house for their sleepover.  They all come staggering home Sunday morning.

Here are my kids totally thrilled to get to pose together:

Friday, September 27, 2013

wild and crazy girls night out

My friend Connie and I decided to go out tonight.  Wild women that we are, we first headed to the Amish school for the fundraising haystack supper and afterwards went to the homecoming game(we won 26-13, because I know you were dying to know).  We were told to be there early to see the introduction of the court before the game, since both our kids are on court.  Well, we were walking to the field from our cars when we heard them start announcing the court so we started running down the street, blowing past people standing in line waiting to get their hand stamped (fortunately, we're both school staff, so we don't have to pay to get into the games, or we probably would have gotten busted for not paying to get in).  We missed her daughter, but I got there just in time to hear WE's name get announced and see him and his partner, Katie walk across the field.  It was a little more low-key than the court announcement during the school pep assembly this afternoon, from what I heard.  That time, all the other court members nicely walked past the crowd of kids, until WE and Katie came through, instead of walking, those two did cartwheels past the crowd.  I wish I would have seen it since I didn't even know WE could DO a cartwheel.

Not that I do things at the last minute or anything, but after school today, I took Angel #4 out shopping for a dress for tomorrow nights homecoming dance.  I kept hoping she'd find someone to borrow from, since I really hate spending money on a dress she'll probably never wear again.  But, since she's shaped like Mae West, she kind of was popping out of everything she tried, so I figured I'd have to pony up the big bucks to get a decent dress on the kid that wasn't in danger of wardrobe malfunctioning.  Fortunately, our local thrift store has a fairly decent selection of semi-formal dresses and we found one that's absolutely gorgeous on her and as an added benefit, she'll be able to dance without fear of popping out of her dress.  I'll have to post some pictures when I'm at the dance tomorrow night.  Yeah, apparently, they're trying to get all the Senior parents out to the dance for the crowning.  I'm not too crazy about that idea, first off because I'm not the kind of parent who hangs out at school dances, secondly, the crowning is at 10pm and I was planning on being all comfy cozy in my jammies at that time, not standing around a dark sweaty smelling gym waiting for my chance to do the special parent/senior dance with a kid who would probably rather cut off his leg rather than dance with his mother.  So yeah, that's gonna be fun.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

so busy I don't have 2 minutes to rub together

Man, it's been crazy around here.  Work has been busy, it's hard to get back into the swing of things after being gone for 3 months.  No wonder it takes kids so long to get in the school frame of mind after summer vacation.  I'm trying to get all the garden stuff dealt with.  My back porch looks like a farmer's market right now, I just keep sticking stuff in there until I get around to dealing with it.  Right now it's full of onions, bell peppers, chili peppers and a big head of cabbage.  There are bushel baskets of potatoes and carrots in the barn that also have to find a home before it gets too cold outside.  I made a few jars of sauerkraut today.  I tried to make it before, but it looked so gross that I just threw it away.  Now I've got a new way to try making it that hopefully will be more successful.

It's Homecoming this week and things got off to a wonderful start.  My front yard was TP'd by 7:30 last night already.  Someone also spray painted the words "I AM JV" on the lawn, a jab at WE who had to run JV at one of the cross country meets a few weeks ago.  He may never live that one down.

The kids are at the girls volleyball game tonight.  WE thinks they may be announcing homecoming king & queen during the game.  I think he's got more chance of becoming court jester than the king, but a lot of his friends are also on court and the whole king/queen naming thing is a huge deal when you're in high school.  I thing they're both also planning on 'studying' tonight after the game, which means that they're going to do their own toilet paper decorating in their friends yards tonight, probably while their friends are here, putting more tp in our trees.  I can't even imagine the time in my life when there isn't going to be toilet paper stuck in my trees during the month of September, but I'm sure empty nesting will be here before I know it and I'll wonder how the time went so fast.

Actually, I was already wondering about the speed of time this weekend.  We had a special event for church and we saw a lot of people we hadn't seen in a year or two.  I know my kids are growing up, but it always takes me by surprise when I see that other people's kids are doing the same thing.  It seems like only yesterday we were all in the nursery changing diapers together, and now we're watching our kids flirting with each other.  Before we know it, we'll be in the nursery changing grandkids diapers.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


I'm happy to report that we had a very successful International Talk Like a Pirate Day.  There was lots of arghing, maties and threats to walk the plank while in the lunch line.  My job is so fun.

WE lucked out and hubs has some work for him this week so he won't have to resort to auctioning off his Homecoming Court spot.

Angel #4 is discovering the benefits of being one the managers of the football team.  The popular, mean girls in her class are all jealous of her close proximity to the team quarterback, an unattainable senior boy and claim she's "so lucky".  They also think she's lucky to be able to ride the team bus on the way home from games.  #4 just smiles and doesn't tell them how stinky a school bus full of tired sweaty teen aged boys actually is and just lets them imagine her life as one big glamorous football party.  A couple freshman girls also have a huge crush on WE's best friend and think #4's so lucky to have him hanging around our house - she didn't even tell them about the time he was wandering around upstairs wearing only his boxers, she's so used to her older brothers that stuff like that doesn't phase her, which is why she handles things with the football team so well.  I pointed out to her that I bet she never imagined the day when having WE for a brother would be an asset in her life, but now look, what (almost) 15 year old girl wouldn't love to be surrounded by upperclassmen.  I've got the feeling that all her friends who are lacking in the big brother department are going to be spending more time hanging around here this year.

I've got my garden about half cleaned out for the year.  The other day I pulled up all the dead corn stalks and pulled most of the onions. The tomatoes are all picked and canned, I did 54 quarts, not as many as other years, but I've still got jars dated from 2011, so I think I'm good on the tomato thing for quite awhile.  Today I pulled weeds, picked about half of the bell peppers (a 5 gal bucketful) and one of the cabbages.  Tomorrow is only half a day of school, so I've recruited Angel #4 to help me dig potatoes, it'll be nice to have those out of the garden.  Then all I've got left is to pull the carrots, pick the rest of the peppers, both bell and chili, pick the rest of the cabbages, pumpkins & squash and figure out what to do with the rest of the kohlrabi and the brussels sprouts.  As much as I"m not looking forward to winter, I AM looking forward to a break from the gardening.  As much as I love doing it, things start getting exhausting this time of year and I'm ready to focus my life on something other than pulling weeds and putting up butchering up all those filthy broiler chickens that are stinking up my barn.  Raising laying hens is so much nicer than raising the meat birds, thankfully, the whole meat bird thing only takes 3 months, then it's back to just me and my ladies in the barn.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

I don't have time for all this stuff

I'm finally taking a little break to catch up here, I've been busy busy busy.  That's the problem with going on vacation, it takes forever to get things back in order once you get home.

We did some great stuff when we were in Florida.  We were there for hubs for business, so on Tuesday night, we met all the business partners at a Cuban restaurant at Downtown Disney for dinner.  I'd never had Cuban food before, it was pretty good stuff.  The next day was meetings followed by the 6pm show of La Nouba, Circe Du Soleil is absolutely incredible and I highly recommend any of the Circe shows if you ever get a chance to get to one.  Thursday was more meeting, it was held in one of the meeting rooms in a Downtown Disney restaurant, so we were right in the thick of things, though I can live a very very long time without ever hearing another Disney song.  Thursday night we let Angel #4 pick a dinner show to go to and she picked Medieval Times.  The three of us went with 2 of hubs business partners and we all had a great time.  #4 and Peter (one of the partners) were having a super time harassing the opposing knights and really getting into it.  #4 was thrilled to have our knight toss her a flower during the show and she made sure she got her picture taken with him afterwards.

Friday was our first day to ourselves and Angel #4 got to live out her dream to go to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios.  She was practically floating down the streets of Hogsmeade she was so happy and when she ordered a butterbeer, I thought she was going to burst out into song.  Saturday we went to Ybor City in Tampa, but spent most of the day just chilling.  On our way home on Sunday, we got to spend a few hours with Angel #2.  We met her boyfriend, her roommate, her/my friend Amanda and got to see where she lives and works.  It was great seeing what a great life she's made for herself down there.  It gives me such a feeling of satisfaction as a mother to see my kids out in the world, taking care of themselves and living a happy life.  What more could a mother ask for?

WE made it onto Homecoming court, which is kind of a big deal around here.  You get on the court with a combination of your accumulated sports letters and your GPA.  But, WE's phone died yesterday and he doesn't have the money to replace it, so he was wondering how to go about auctioning off his place on homecoming court so he could raise the money for a new phone.  I told him I didn't think he'd get away with doing something like that and he might have to do something even more drastic, like......get a job!!  We'll see where the homecoming drama takes us.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

getting ready to head out

We all survived the first week of school.  It was nice to see the kids in the lunch line again and help the kindergartners adjust to eating lunch in the cafeteria.  But, after only a week, I guess it's time for a break and on Tuesday morning Angel #4, hubs and I are on our way to Florida for a working vacation.  Hubs has business meetings to go to and #4 and I have some sun soaking up to do.  I've been informed by #4 that we're also going to Harry Potter World to load up on butterbeer and beanies bots or whatever those things are called.  WE is staying home, he's got too much going his senior year to intentionally miss school.  I told him that I didn't know if we trusted him since last time we left him home alone, the garage blew over - it must have been one heck of a party!  On the flight home, hubs arranged it so we have a super long layover in Houston so we can spend some time with Angel #2.  She's excited to have us meet her boyfriend and I'm looking forward to meeting Amanda, who was her first roommate when she moved down there.  Amanda is one of my internet friends, we've know each other for probably 7 or 8 years but never meet in real life.  She opened her home to #2 when she moved down there and they became good friends.  Now, I finally get to see the woman for reals!  It should be a fun time.

Hubs just got in from Hawaii today, he'll be home just long enough to unpack, do a few things around the house, then pack up again for Tuesday.  That poor guy never to stay home.  I've got some things to do before leaving as well.  The garden is just about done, but there's a 5 gallon bucket of tomatoes waiting to get canned up.  There are probably some beans that need my attention as well.  I also have to make up a daily to-do list for WE.  My egg chickens are easy to take care of - let them out in the morning and at night feed them, lock them back up and collect the eggs.  The meat chickens are a little more high maintenance and at the moment they need feeding 2 or 3 times a day and their pen should get mucked out every couple days because they're disgusting.  WE really isn't going to be around enough to do all the feedings so I was a little concerned about what we're going to do.  But now hubs said he's going to make me a big feeder that can hold enough feed to keep the fat pigs happy for awhile. Also, our friend Nancy is here visiting from Pennsylvania.  She was going to go back home Tuesday, but threw out her back and isn't up to the drive.  So she might just stay here for the week and be around to take care of the critters during the day.  That should make Diesel doggy happy, because otherwise, he'd have to spend 10 hours a day in his pen and that would just make him sad.  He's used to having run of the house/yard all day.  It sure would be easier to travel if I didn't have stupid animals to worry about.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Boyfriend Win

I swear, I don't know what I"m going to write about when WE moves out next summer, he's given me so much material over the years.  The Marines better appreciate him is all I can say.

Tomorrow is WE's girlfriend's birthday.  Apparently, he really screwed up on the 1st anniversary things last month, so he had to redeem himself and boy, did he ever.  First off, he took her out to dinner at a nice place - extra points for me when the people in front of them in the restaurant line asked for a table by a window and they were told they were all reserved.  Who told WE to make reservations ahead of time??  Me, that's who!  Yay mom!!  After they were done eating, he took her out to the car and blindfolded her so she wouldn't know where they were going next.  He possibly could have been pulled over as a kidnapping suspect, so another yay for unobservant bystanders!  He took a roundabout route to the beach, which had to be a bit of a challenge since the restaurant they ate at was called Water's Edge so it's not like they had a long way to go.  Once they arrived at the beach, he kept the blindfold on while he got things set up then led the GF out to the beach where she was surprised with a blanket on the beach surrounded by candles and a chocolate fondue as the centerpiece.  He even had her gift wrapped, thanks to Angel #4 who did it for him after he attempted to wrap it using duct tape and superglue.  He gets his wrapping skills from his mother.  He even had light up balloons and glow sticks to play with once it was really dark.  He's going to have a tough act to follow for her next birthday - organizing this event pretty much drove him insane with all the planning.  But, come to think of it, he's going to be in basic training at this time next year, so he'll probably be off the hook.

I got the blame the other day for something, and for once, I was completely innocent.  I was over at WE's GF's house the other day - her mom and I are friends - and I'm not sure how we got on the subject, but I was telling her how hypersensitive WE is to noise.  His bedroom is next to the bathroom and if you brush your teeth without closing the bathroom door, he has an utter fit about the noise.  Well, a couple days later, WE blames me for a video he got on snap chat.  His friend Mitch and his girlfriend Bailey, sent him a video of them brushing their teeth.  He complained about it to everyone and said that his GF heard what I said and so arranged for them to drive him nuts with the toothbrushing video.  The next day he got another video of a different friend brushing his teeth, after that, a couple more.  I happened to be standing next to Mitch and Bailey in the concession stand line at Friday night's football game and mentioned it to them.  They said the funny thing was they were just horsing around and sent the video to about 10 people just for laughs, but when WE had such a conniption  about it, they spread the word so more people would send him their own tooth brushing videos.  So, instead of it being MY fault like he claimed, he actually set his own self up.  Then I told them that another noise that really drives him crazy is the sound of people eating corn on the cob, so now they're going to work on a new video...and that one just may be my fault.  ;)   I kid you not, the last time our family all had corn on the cob, WE wore one of those sets of ear muffs that construction guys wear when they're working a jackhammer.  It was hilarious.

Tomorrow it's back to school.  I don't think the kids are quite ready to go back yet, but I think it's about time.  It's been such a cold crappy summer (it's 63 degrees right now, labor day afternoon) that we might as well be doing something inside since it's so cruddy outside.  I'll be back at work as well, torturing elementary school children for another year.  Life is good.

Friday, August 30, 2013

a little of this, a little of that

First off, I want to let out a little SQUEE because Captain Jack Harkness sent Jenny, the Bloggess, a picture of himself holding twine which may not mean anything to you, but if you love Dr Who and read The Bloggess, you would squee also.

Next, if it shows you my utter disregard to the Packers, Jeannie, not only did I not know they were playing the Seahawks last Friday, I also had no clue who won or lost until you commented on my post.

In other news that shows that though I may be apathetic about the Packers and spend my time watching BBC science fiction/fantasy shows, I am slowly embracing the 21st century, though it kind of feels like the embrace you got during your first dance with a boy in 7th grade as Spandau Ballet is echoing in your jr high school gym and you really wish you hadn't drank all the punch at the refreshment stand.  I've decided to stop hating my smartphone a little less and see what benefits it will bring to my life.  Yep, I've installed a personalized ringtone.  By saying I've installed, I mean I downloaded something on a freebie ringtone site, then couldn't figure out what to do to make it be a ringtone, so I had to have WE finish installing it for me.  BUT, I did manage to download it all by myself, so I think I should get a few points for that at least.  Now, when I get a text, my phone says in a happy, little voice "WOO HOO a text message!!".  Angel #4 told me that the voice is that of a minion, but I don't know what a minion is, but it must be something vaguely cool since a high school freshman recognized it as such.  I'm embracing the future, people!  But I still hate my phone and am looking forward to the day I can downgrade it to a simple, easy to use little flip phone.  They call it a flip phone because it's the only kind of phone I flippin' know how to use.

Hubs found some further damage caused by the storm a couple weeks ago.  We've got a cement silo and it had a small cement cover at the very top, about 2 feet in diameter and probably weighs over 100 lbs.  It has a lightning rod with a cable sticking out of it.  Well, last week, hubs went into the dog pen for something and found that cover thingy lying in the pen.  The wind must have channeled up the silo from the bottom enough to push up the cover so the wind could catch it and throw it about 40 feet.  There aren't any dents on the barn roof indicating that it simply toppled over and rolled down the roof, it appears to have shot right up and landed on the ground.  The lightning rod is still attached.

Tuesday morning marked the beginning of teacher inservice for the school year.  To kick things off, there's a staff meeting with a few introductions and speakers.  This year we're getting both a new elementary/middle school principal and a new superintendent, so they were both introduced to the staff.  The meeting was opened up by a speech from a member of the school board, and then hubs was asked to speak as a representative of the general population.  He was picked because he gave a presentation last spring in a business class and really made an impact and the high school principal wanted him to tell the staff the story of how we decided to move to our town when we moved here from Hawaii.  We picked our home based on information we found online about the quality of the local schools, mostly a site called  Our school district was high on the list of good area school districts and that, as well as the fact that our town is within easy driving distance of 2 airports, helped us make our decision to move here.  Anyway, since we moved here 3 years ago, the district has only gotten better and we're now on the list of the top 25 districts in the entire state of Wisconsin.  So anyway, hubs gave a speech telling our story of moving here, our search for a good school for our kids and how they've exceeded our expectations since we've been here.  He also threw in a dose of humor and inspiration.  Last night I went to a back to school faculty picnic and I don't know how many people told me what a great job hubs did.  A lot of people had no idea how well we rated in the state, they knew we were a good district, but were really pumped up to see just how good we really were, they all had way too much fun going onto schooldigger after the meeting and comparing us with other area districts.  I'm pretty proud of my husband, he was certainly the hit of the teacher inservice meeting and if people didn't know him before, they sure do now.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

we nipped that problem in the bud

Tuna Catterole went to the vet to get fixed yesterday, so hopefully we won't have the kitten problem anymore...except the one kitten we ended up keeping is a female so we've got to remember to get her fixed in the next month or so, or we'll we right back at square one.

We also did some school shopping when we went back to town to pick up Tuna. We were listening to the radio and the song, Maggie May came on.  Angel #4 sat quietly in the back seat listening, and when the song was over said, you know, if you had to name me after a song, why couldn't you named me after someone nicer than Maggie May?  So I asked who she'd rather be named after and her response was "Lola".  Apparently she'd rather be named after a transvestite than a cougar.  Go figger

First football game of the year last night.  It was non-conference, but still quite a few people showed up, which just shows the power of high school football, especially since there was a severe conflict of interest going on, the Packers game started at the same time as the high school game.  A lot of people were watching the high school game, but had an ear bud in one ear, keeping track of the Pack as well, and the guys in the booth were giving updates on the Packer game during our game.  I personally, don't give a rats patootie about the Packers, but I'm definitely in the minority here in Wisconsin.

And Tanya, even though I'm skinny, I'm definitely not in shape.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

It's been awhile....again

Things have been busy around here and every time I think about writing a new blog post, I realize that I have to be someplace in 10 minutes, so put it off for another day.

Hubs has been on a bike riding frenzy this summer.  The other morning, he put 24 miles on, then that night wanted me to go on another ride with him.  So far I've managed to avoid going farther than 10 miles at a time, but he keeps trying.  He claims he's trying to get me healthier and in better shape so I live longer and I told him that if I live to be 96 that will totally mess up his plans of getting himself a busty Asian beauty for his second wife.  I'm trying to help him here, yet he just ignores me and continues to make me go on bike rides.  Monday we were riding uphill against the wind and I was complaining about it - it's great resistance training, he claimed.  I told  him that I'd been resisting this training for months now.  I'm only planning on living until I'm 75 or 80, so if I live to see 100, I'm totally blaming him.

The insurance guy was out here checking out the storm damage.  It sounds like we're getting a new roof on our house taken care of, which is great news since we were planning on putting on a new roof anyway.  The barn might be a little trickier, since the closer he looked, the more damage he found.  It would probably cost thousands of dollars to repair the damage, but the barn is already 100 years old, so I don't really know what they're going to suggest we do.  The garage was uninsurable, so we're not getting squat for that.  Upon looking closer at it, we discovered that it wasn't anchored to the cement slab in anyway, just sitting on top of it, like a kids Lincoln Log house.  It's a miracle it didn't blow over years ago.  We stored our recyclable stuff in there and I'm still finding pop cans and plastic milk cartons lying around the yard.

We finally got the 40 baby chickens out of our bathtub on Monday.  Two weeks of their stinky, noisy mess was enough.  It's finally warmed up enough that we felt safe keeping them in the barn instead of the warmth of the bathroom.  Things are hot out today, but overall, it's been a horribly cold August..and July...and June.  Winter better come late this year, is all I can say.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Indoor parking is overrated anyway

Well, it's been a busy week.

Monday morning we headed out to camp and had a wonderful week there.  It was great seeing everyone again, staff and campers both. Every year we see some new faces and some familiar ones aren't there, which is kind of sad.  But, it's how life goes and I'm always happy to see the ones who return year after year.

We spent the week at Rent-a-Grandma's house since she lives much closer to camp than we do, and WE stayed at home to keep things going here, including feeding the animals and all that other fun stuff.  Tuesday night - or, I guess it was actually Wednesday morning - at 1:30am, I got a text.  I couldn't figure out who was texting me and hubs told me to turn my stupid phone off.  But, with WE home alone, I thought I'd better check things out.  Yep, it was a text from him.  It simply said:  I just got home, the garage blew away.  There's nothing but a cement slab.   I figured I'd better call him.  He said he'd been at his girlfriend's house when the weather got bad.  They had him stay there until the storm blew over, well, it blew over alright.  First he had to drive about 20 mph because there was so much hail on the road that the truck was hydroplaning.  He turned onto our road, relieved he was almost home, only to see our neighbors tree across the road.  He took the ditch to get around it, then turned into our driveway.  He was going to park in the garage when he saw that it wasn't there.  High winds had blew it completely over.  That's when he sent me the text.  He said by that time all he could do was laugh - what else you gonna do??  After we talked on the phone, he went inside only to find out the power was out.  He made his way upstairs in the dark and toward his bedroom and tripped over his bedroom door, which really disoriented him, since when he left, his bedroom door was closed, now it was lying on the floor of his room. He's also left the patio door in the living room open, the wind had blown the sofa cushions right off the couch.  Further inspection the next day showed that our barn must have lifted up slightly and settled back down, because some of the support beams were laying on the ground.  We got off easy compared to some.  WE's girlfriend's family had 3 barns blow over and the tops of their silos taken off.  This is what our garage looks like now, poor Diesel is a little confused.

You can't tell from looking at the picture, but there used to be a peach tree where the garage is now laying.  There's just some branches sticking out from under the roof, kind of like the wicked witch of the east's legs in the Wizard of Oz, minus the singing Munchkins.  That white thing in the background is the garage door.  It skimmed right over the top of our LP tank, there's some red paint scrapes along the top of the tank, but that's it, which is great, because that could have been a dangerous mess.  The insurance guy is coming over this week to check out the damage.

All told, two tornadoes came through that night, one about 15 miles south of Rent-a-Grandmas house - though the town where she lives only had some branches down - we didn't even lose power.  But a church in the tornado's path was destroyed.  The second tornado came down about 7 miles west of our house, took out a ton of trees, barns and big metal electric poles.  It must have come right down our road since there's very little damage north or south of us, but there's tons of damage directly to the east and west of us.  We had 2 lawn chairs on our front porch, one of the chairs was pulled off the porch, went around to the back of the house, either blew over a 4 ft fence or over our used-to-be-garage, and ended up in the back of the garden.  The chair next to it didn't even lose its cushion.  Strange stuff.  Fortunately, there were no deaths or injuries that I've heard of, despite the fact that the National Weather Service or someone else was sleeping on the job and half of the towns hit didn't even have their tornado sirens going.

We didn't bother coming home to check things out, we figured the mess wasn't going anywhere, so we got home about 7 Friday night and did some clean-up.  We did more cleaning on Saturday, then headed almost all the way back toward Rent-A-Grandma's for a wedding.  I didn't really want to go, I was pretty exhausted from the whole crazy week, but I'm glad we did.  I saw a bunch of people I knew, but from all different areas of my life.  There were 4 people that I knew from church, our friend who goes in with us with our broiler chickens (which are happily cheeping away in the bathtub), my cousin, his wife and kids and one of Angel #2's friends that she hung out with last summer when she was working out of town.  Most of those people didn't know the other ones, so it was just kind of weird for me to see them all in the same place.  The reception was held in a remodeled barn and they did a wonderful job decorating it with burlap table clothes and mason jars holding candles and sheaves of wheat.  It was a really neat looking set-up and fit right in with the wedding invitation we received announcing that "Talia and Brian were gettin' hitched".

WE left on Saturday morning to spend a few days with Angel #1 at the military base in San Diego - it's #1's last leave before his deployment on the 22nd.  Angel #4 joined the high school football team as a manager, so she'll be going to practices 6 days a week until school starts.  WE starts cross country practices a week from tomorrow.  I can't believe the summer is going by so fast.  September 3rd we'll all be back at school.  This week should be fairly calm  and normal, with only #4's school orientation on Wednesday night for me to deal with.  I can use a little break from crazy.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

It's August, how did that happen?

Thank goodness the cold wave didn't last long.  We only ran the furnace for a couple hours, just enough to take the chill off.  Things have been in the 70's ever since, comfortable, but we usually close the windows at night as it still gets a little chilly.  This summer was a rip-off.

Not only that, it's about 2/3s over already.  The kids start school and me, work, a month from today.  I had to go in to work one day last week and get the lunch menu together for the first month of school.  We're celebrating International Talk Like a Pirate Day with spARGHetti and walk the plank garlic bread.  The school district just might regret the day they hired a crazy woman to do admin for the lunch program.  :)

Angel #1 turned 21 a couple days ago.  I can't believe I've got a kid who's legal drinking age, not that it's doing much good.  He spent his birthday on a troop transport ship somewhere in the Pacific ocean and won't get back to dry land until this Thursday.  WE's flying out there on Friday to spend a few days with his big bro before he gets sent out on his big deployment, which I think happens August 20, but he didn't know for sure.  He also doesn't know how long he'll be deployed, anywhere from 7-10 months, which is a pretty broad window, if you ask me.  He's going out onto the ship again for the deployment, I'm not sure exactly what he'll be doing and don't really want to know.  I prefer to think he'll just be hanging out on the Lido deck, sipping mai-tais with Gopher and Captain Stuebing.  Just call me Cleopatra, Queen of Denial.

We're heading out to camp next week.  It's our yearly pilgrimage to Keller Lake, a day camp for the mentally handicapped.  Except for the years we missed when we were in Hawaii, we've gone every year since '01.  WE has decided he doesn't want to go, so he's staying home, which isn't such a bad thing.  I've got 40 baby chicks getting delivered on Tuesday, so he'll be around to pick them up and take care of them.  He'll also be around for all those fun chores like potato bug squishing and stuff like that.  We tried to get rid of Tuna Catteroles kittens before we left, but had kind of a time crunch.  They just turned 8 weeks yesterday and we didn't want to take them away from Tuna before that.  I put an ad on Craigslist and had a couple calls.  We got rid of Weasely (he's a ginger) but he might becoming back.  Apparently, the people who took him were under the impression that as soon as they dumped him in their house, he and their dog were going to be BFFs and when they weren't, they called us and said they'd have to return him.  Yeah, they gave it a whole 8 hours.  Angel #4 tried to explain to them that it would take a little while, but I guess waiting an entire week for a new pet to get accustomed to your home was waaaay longer than they could handle.  The haven't shown up yet, so maybe they decided to keep him after all.  I almost wish they'd bring him back, they seem to be too big of morons to responsibly take care of pets.  It should have been a big clue when they showed up driving a smart car. Have you ever noticed that many of the people who drive smart cars...aren't?  Poor Tuna was really missing Weasely last night.  Angel #4 said she was sitting outside her window meowing half the night.  We'd brought all 4 kittens into the house so the guy could see them all, and then only 3 made it back to the barn, I think Tuna thinks we just forgot to take Weasely back out to the barn after house playtime was over.  I wish you could explain things to animals.

So, at the moment, we've still got three kittens left waiting for homes.  I'm taking the ad down tomorrow since we're not going to be home to deal with things.  WE probably could, but I'm already pushing my luck having him chicken sit. If you're looking for a kitten, we've still got Charlie (he bit someones finger) and Not Charlie (who looks like Charlie, but he isn't).  They're both tabbies.  We've also got a little grey girl, Banacatalotta (a distortion of the name of a character on Dr. Who).  But, we're planning on keeping one and Angel #4 really wants to keep Bana, so we'll see what happens.  If we can't get rid of Charlie or Not Charlie, but can find a home for Bana, she's going to have to go.  We really don't need more than 2 barn cats.  Tanya, we'll be out in your direction next week and we would deliver.  You interested??????

Sunday, July 28, 2013

I shouldn't be hearing this

It's July 28th and I'm hearing a sound I never thought (or wanted) to hear on this date, the sound of the furnace kicking in.  The temps have been in the 50's for the last couple of days and it's getting ridiculous.  Hubs got home from Hawaii yesterday morning and after 10 days of the tropics, he couldn't handle the cold, so on went the furnace.  I don't approve of this weather.  You shouldn't have to dress warm to go out pea picking in the garden. I want a refund on my summer!!                                                                                                            

Friday, July 26, 2013

jammed up

Wednesday, I picked a bunch of black raspberries at a friends house - she's been too overwhelmed with life to deal with the huge patch they have in their backyard.  Yesterday, I made 12 pints of jam out of them and I'm happy (and amazed) to say they all sealed.  I usually always have at least one clinker in the bunch after a day of canning.  Since I've already got 4 different jars of half-eaten jam in the refrigerator already, I'm glad I didn't have to add to the menagerie.  I hate having more than one jar of jam in the fridge, but during canning time, it happens, along with having various unsealed jars of green beans and tomatoes.  I'm a fridge minimalist, I freak out when I've got packed shelves in my refrigerator , which is what I've got now.  So I'm on a leftovers clear-out binge and I'm not cooking more food until the stuff in the fridge is gone.  And we're going to be eating lots of bread and jam to get those jars out of there as well.

Yesterday, WE got back from an overnight trip down to the military facility that does the intense physical to see if recruits are able to join up.  He passed with flying colors and is very relieved.  He was afraid they's find something we didn't know about and ruin his chances for the military.  Being in the Marines has been his after graduation plan for years and he would have had to rethink his whole future.  Anyway, he passed, so his plans are still intact unless he does something stupid and gets in trouble with the law, but his head is screwed on pretty tight, so I don't foresee any problems.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

On with life

Thanks so much for the sympathies Tonya and Afton, Dave will be missed by many people.  We were at the funeral yesterday and the family shared Dave stories during the service and it made me wish we'd known him better.  His family looked exhausted yesterday, so many people had gone through the receiving line, WE was at the wake on Thursday and said it was solid people for over 6 hours straight and the funeral service started late yesterday because the pre-funeral receiving line was so long.  WE was there last night and said that after it was all over, the family went outside and lit sparklers and released a couple of those paper hot air balloons into the sky and just celebrated life.  Now it's time for the healing to begin.

The heat wave we've been having finally broke last night.  We'd had steady temps in the high 80's-low 90's since Monday along with high humidity.  Around 8 last night, I went outside and noticed the temps had dropped to 73, so I shut off the a/c, opened the windows and enjoyed the fresh air.  When I let the chickens out at 6 this morning, the thermometer was at 64 degrees, what a huge difference.  I've got laundry waving in the breeze and the kids outside doing garden and lawn work, it's so nice not being stuck inside the house.

Yesterday morning, I heard motorcycles outside and saw that 2 Harley's were pulling into our driveway.  I didn't recognize either driver, they were both scruffy-looking guys with the bushy beards, leather Harley vests, motorcycle boots, the whole deal and I was wondering what the heck a mini motorcycle gang was doing in my driveway so I went outside to find out.  This big guy gets off his hog and says:  Do you own the property all the way to the county road?  I told him no, that was our neighbors and he explained.  He said, "We were driving along and I noticed all the martens flying around, I've never seen so many in one spot. I love martens.  Then I noticed the marten houses, those are the nicest I've ever seen and I wanted to talk to the person who put them up."  He then told me about the marten houses he had at his house and the houses he put up.  So yeah, the big hairy motorcycle guy stopped by because he was a bird lover.  You never know who you're going to meet.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Still kind of numb

Friday night at the neighborhood party, hubs and I had a great time with our friends, Dave and Connie, who also happen  to be WE's girlfriend's parents.  Initially, WE had a fit that we were socializing with them, but finally we convinced him that we had lots more interesting things to talk about than him and his girlfriend.  Like I said, we had a really fun time and I'm doubly glad that we stayed out and socialized with them a little later than we usually stay out because on Sunday morning, Dave was killed in a car accident.  He'd been taking the hay off from the field next to our house and was taking a load to their farm when his truck collided with a semi.  I saw the ambulance go by before we left for church and said a little prayer for whoever it was coming for, but didn't realize it was for a friend until we got home from church and Connie came over to tell us what happened.  She needed us to get WE's girlfriend, who was taking a class in Green Bay and hadn't heard the news yet.  Someone needed to get her and her car home, because she was not going to be in any shape to drive.  I was so glad we could do something to help, because nothing makes you feel more helpless than a death.

To let you know what kind of a guy Dave was, here's a story.  We were at their house on Sunday night and they were looking for pictures for the memorial.  Somebody said, here's a 'hands on the van' picture!  Dave was a 30 year old bachelor dairy farmer when he met Connie, who was divorced with 3 little girls - her youngest was only 2.    Dave realized he was no longer a single guy and had a wife and 3 little girls to take care of, so he decided they needed a mini-van.  If you ever want to be rich, don't go into small family dairy farming, the money to up and buy a mini-van just isn't there.  Around that time, a local car dealership had a contest, whoever could keep their hand on a mini-van the longest would get a 2 year free lease on it.  Dave stood there with his hand on the van for 105 hours, then his ankles started swelling and he could no longer waste time touching a van because he was falling behind in his farm work, so he finally gave in.  He'd figured he could have beat the only contestant left besides him, but it just wasn't worth it for only a 2 year lease and would have been a different story if he could have won the stupid thing, besides, there was a farm to take care of and who knows how long the other guy was going to hang on.  Anyway, I thought that was an incredibly sweet story about a man who was willing to stand for 105 hours by a van to try to take care of his brand-new, instant family.  I'm sure he'd tell you today that it was worth every minute. Though they weren't his children by birth, those were his girls, especially WE's girlfriend, who is the youngest of the 3.  My heart just broke in a million pieces when I heard her sobbing in the backseat of my van and say "he was my daddy."  The world lost a great man.

All day Sunday, cars were driving real slow past our house and I was trying to figure out what was going on.  Finally, I realized that it was the neighbors checking Dave's fields to see if he got the hay off before he died or if they family would need some help.  It was already all taken off, Dave died at 8:30 am, when we got home from church before noon, there were about 3 tractors out in the field finishing up the haying.  All neighbors, pitching in to help.  Death doesn't matter in farming, the cows still need to be milked and the hay still needs to be taken up before it rains, and a farming community knows this and pitches in to help their own.  On the way home from church, before we even knew about Dave, WE and I were discussing living in a small town and how everyone knows everyone else's business.  Sometimes, that's not such a bad thing.  As soon as word got out about the troubles, our community was there to help.  Small town life does have its blessings.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

big booms!

Last night, if anyone had wanted to find my house, I simply would have told them to follow the fireworks.  It was our neighbor's annual 4th of July party last night and the fireworks were wow...just wow.  The sons in the family set them up on either side of the far end of the lake so they're coming from both directions and we sit further back and enjoy the show.  So do a lot of our neighbors who weren't invited to the party, they all had parties of their own.  There's also all the other random people in town who know the party is going on and park along our road and sit in their cars to watch the show.  I know last year Ken told us he spent $10 grand on the fireworks and I know he had to have spent at least that much on them this year as well.  It was pretty spectacular.  He also supplies a beer wagon, pop and juice and a huge pot of booyah and tons of chips and pretzels, so we were all well fed and hydrated as well.  Hubs and I parked our butts around the bonfire with some friends and ended up being about the last of the crowd to leave.  Of course, we all had the advantage of living nearby, so we didn't have much of a drive, a lot of the guests were family friends who lived in and around Green Bay, so they had a half hour or more drive ahead of them to get home.  This party is one of the few times when our house is actually near the center of things and within easy walking distance, usually, we're the ones with the long drive to get anywhere.

In other excitement, we're opening up the crawlspace under our house to make our basement bigger.  The original part of our house was built with a full sized (though really dirty and creepy) basement underneath, but the other half of our house was a later addition (meaning it's only about 100 years old instead of 150) and only has a crawlspace beneath it.  I really need more space to store my canned food, right now, it's scattered all over the house - beans and corn in the basement, canning supplies in one of the outbuildings, apple pie filling in the closet in the office, cans of beans in the laundry room, you get the picture.  It would really be nice to have most of my food, as well as my canning supplies, all in the same spot.  So we've got WE and two of his buddies making us a root cellar.  It's a big messy project.  First they had to jackhammer their way through a chunk of the 2 foot thick rock wall foundation, then start digging out the dirt.  They're filling 5 gallon buckets and hauling them up the outside cellar stairs -thank goodness we have those, there's no way they'd get them up the narrow, creaky inside set of stairs to the basement.  We're hoping to get maybe a 10 or 12 foot room out of the deal, then it's going to get floor to ceiling shelves and a couple of nice bins to store onions, potatoes and carrots.  It's going to be a pioneer woman's dream, people.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Down to 3 kids

Angel #1 is in the air back to California right now.  We had a wonderful time with all of the kids home, but it was over much much too quickly.  Angel #2 goes back on Tuesday, then it's a return to what passes for normal here.

Sunday morning we picked #1 up at the airport and headed back to town to watch the parade.  Angel #4 and her friend were on one of the floats and made sure they got WE and his friends good with their super soakers as their float went past.  After the parade, we enjoyed the music and watched the horse pulls for a while.  The boys went to a pool party and discovered that despite #1's military training, brothers vs brothers chicken fighting will usually be won by the brothers that are both well over 6 ft tall and over 200 lbs.  Our two shorties didn't stand a chance.  At 5ft 10, WE is the acknowledged giant of our household.

Monday night we had a small party for some friends and family celebrating the return of the children. I just made a huge batch of taco fixings and sat back and enjoyed our company.  Though I tried, I couldn't convince any of our guests to take home one of the kittens.

Tuesday was family picture day.  I'm willing to guess that our photographer never had a request for zombie poses before.  Angel #2 rocks at being a zombie, Angel #1...not so much.  We saw a small preview and it looks like we're going to get some great pictures out of the deal, even the zombie ones.  As long as we were out there, we had her do WE's senior pictures as well. Might as well kill all those birds with one stone, imo.

We went to the rodeo on Thursday night.  WE's girlfriend had never been to a rodeo before, so she got an education.  It was a lot of fun, though no one managed to stick on a bull for the required 8 seconds.  I tell you, those guys are nuts.  When the boys were little, they both had rodeo aspirations, I'm glad they outgrew those dreams.  Angel #1 was going to be a bull rider and WE,of course, had plans to be a bull fighter - not the Spanish kind, but the guys that go out there in clown make-up and distract the bulls away from the fallen cowboys.

Yesterday, hubs and I went to a neighborhood party while the kids headed out to Bay Beach, our local amusement park and today, hubs and the girls are back at the rodeo while WE and I are going to hang around home and get things ready for some overnight company we're having tomorrow night.  I also have to make something for a potluck we're invited to tomorrow after church.

So yeah, we've had a busy week.  Oh, and I also managed to can up about 21 pints of strawberry jam somewhere in there as well.  Time goes so fast when you're busy.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

My fingers don't work anymore

I went on one of my epic gardening jags today.  I think I was out there pulling weeds for about 6 hours today and now my fingers are all stiff and sore.  I'm making tons of typos here, thank goodness for the backspace key.  But, now my garden looks beautious - there's only one little patch of weeds I was too exhausted to deal with.  To give you an idea of how beastly big my garden is, that 6 hours only covered about half the garden, the other half we'd been doing in smaller spurts throughout the week.  Now if we just keep on hoeing, it should be all nice and spiffy for the rest of the summer.  Until stuff starts coming in and I've got more important things to do than pulling weeds, like canning tomatoes and eating fresh kohlrabi.

Tanya, we were just talking about the giant underwear on the clothesline the other day!  I think poor Angel #1 was only in 1st grade when we did that to him.  We start embarrassing our children at a young age at this house!

Hubs didn't make it past the first round at the comedy contest in Winnipeg, but just the fact that he was chosen to go in the first place is pretty darn impressive.  He did a lot of networking when he was up there, so who knows where he might end up next.

This weekend is the huge event for our town.  It's the weekend of the Fireman's Picnic.  There's not a whole ton of stuff going on, but for our little spot on the map, it's a big deal.  Last night hubs and I headed there for the fish fry, the kids stuck around for the band afterwards.  The band was still going when we went back to get the kids, so we hung around to listen for a bit.  They were pretty eclectic.  We heard covers by everyone from Prince, The Georgia Satellites (I got a little change in my pocket goin' jingle lingle ling!) to Eminem and the Goo Goo Dolls.  Today was a 5K walk, horse pulling in the afternoon and another rock band tonight. Angel #4 and a friend went, I'm staying home and trying to keep my muscles from seizing up after all my weed pulling.  Tomorrow is the big parade, more horse pulling and the Wisconsin staple, a polka band.  Angel #1 is coming home tomorrow morning as well for 5 days of leave.  So YAY for him.  Angel #2 is getting in on Monday, then I'll have all my little chicks under my wing again - for a couple days anyway.  To mark this auspicious occasion, we're getting family pictures taken on Tuesday.  We haven't had an actual planned, posed family picture taken in about 10 years, so I think we're long overdue.