Monday, September 24, 2007

Ditch work

If you have talked to me recently you have heard my complaining about the ditch work being done on my street. I thought I would finally get around to sharing a few of the pictures from the oh so wonderful ditch work being done!

Let me tell you this is fun stuff...............

First Dance

On Friday, Ashley had her first school dance. There was much drama involved of course. First finding "the right dress". Then "the right shoes". After many stores and mom hours later. We learn two days before the dance OH YEAH it's a sports theme dance so come dressed in your favorite sports team colors..........uuuuuhhhh right so this is what we ended up with hehe
It gets more depressing with each passing year of how quickly time goes by. She said she had a great time and danced "tons" ........."but not with the boys mom so don't worry" haha. Oh how she knows her mother.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Is it possible for clean rooms?

I have had a battle with my oldest and her room since Kindergarten. I have tried many many things to attempt to keep her room clean. I have done it myself only to have it a mess as soon as she is home 20 minutes from school.

I have taken away every item she owns leaving an almost empty dresser and a bed. Seriously she didn't care. She had one outfit to her name and didn't care. I even went so far as have a friend purchase the ugliest dress at a garage sale she could find and Ashley loved it.

I know with out a doubt that it's my lack of consistency. I know that its my fault that when I took everything away, my child KNEW me well enough to know that I did not throw it all away like I said I was going to. When I think about throwing it out I visualize Dollar Bills laying in the garbage cans outside.

Well the day has come. I am done wheeling and dealing for a clean house. Today is the day that those Nike tennis shoes that the children leave in the entry way blocking the front door and being tossed outside.

What has brought this on you may be asking? Well I asked Ashley to clean her room yesterday when she got home from Show Choir yesterday at 5 pm. I got the usual tears and rants and raves but then I also got the shocking "If you wouldn't have forced me to go to Show Choir practice, I would have had time to clean it."

Ok well this sent off so many red flags I can't name them all. But firstly what popped into my head was the way that check for ONE of my payments for show choir in the amount of $250!! Next was a vision of the red purse I have been eyeing in the dollar amount of $34 that I can never envision spending on myself for a purse. Let alone that really expensive one I have dreamed of one day buying and know that day will never come because I could never justify it. The next vision I had was of the bag of clothing I just bought Friday for her from Aeropostale of the amount of $75!! $75 I spent just so she would look cute. And what thanks do I get? Granted I was going to have to exchange for different sizes, but they are still sitting in the bag. She currently has clothing strewn from one end of the room to the other not taking into account the Piles all over the floor that doesn't get vacuumed because you can't get in there. Here is a picture of it right now as I type this:

She was told to clean her pig pen last night as I said. I went in two hours later and she was watching tv. So I am done. The bag of clothing is going back. Not to be exchanged but to go back. Get my money back. I will no longer be purchasing items for my oldest daughter. I know that sounds harsh but I have decided I will start giving her allowance (we sometimes give it sometimes don't) I think I will go $10 a week so give her $40 on the first of the month and she will have to use that for clothing she needs, school supplies, her lunch if she wants to buy or anything else that comes up like supplies for her show choir such as makeup , hair rollers, pantyhose. I think she needs to really understand the value of a buck. She needs to understand how hard her father and I have to work so she can have the things she needs.
My neighbor just happened to have seen the room yesterday while over and said in the news paper was a great article about messy rooms so I wanted to share it to anyone else who maybe is having similar problems but not on such a large scale. It was by John Rosemond.
I will keep everyone posted on how it goes today

Saturday, September 15, 2007

I am a mean dog owner

So sign me up for dog abuse.

In our cozy house, we have two beautiful (when properly groomed) male Shelties. Anyone who knows the breed knows how they are herding dogs. So of course they herd. And of course along with the herding...... comes the barking.

Now I don't believe in debarking. I firmly believe dogs should bark when feeling threatened or in the need to protect their family and such.

However if you have ever come to my house, or called my house, you would know that MY SHELTIES bark.... at..... EVERYTHING.
The wind changes direction, we bark.
A leaf falls from a tree, we bark.
A car goes down the road 3 streets away, we bark.
You open the dvd player, we bark.

You get the picture. This doesn't include the time they bark where its to be expected like the Mail lady, the door bell, someone going outside w/out them, things like that.

So after 7 years .....yes 7 (I can be a bit slow sometimes and am known for giving many many chances to correct behavior on its own) long bark filled years , we purchased a bark collar.

And after 3 "tickles" as we call it for the kids. My house is silent. And this is with only one dog wearing the collar. The younger dog is confused why the bigger one yelped those 3 times , he is just plain terrified of anything right now.

Now as proof of this miracle quiet maker, yesterday (actual full day one with collar) we had about 10 men next to our house removing a tree. I am talking chain saws, cranes, trucks, chippers, the whole bit and never a bark. I have a set of windows that was right next to the action and the dogs stood and watched but never a bark.

I love being mean. I love the quiet. I am now in heaven.

Whats for Dinner

On Tuesday, we had a very busy night. So of course it was crock-pot night!

We had
Crock pot Enchiladas and Peach Pie

Ashley loved all but tortillas
Hannah loved the beans
Mark refused to look at the tortillas for confusion of thinking it was pasta (I must be an evil pasta shove down the throat kind of wife?)

And the pie was a hit. I had went to our Farmers Market on Saturday and found some decent peaches. So by Tues. they had ripened to perfection. I will not share the recipe however because it wasn't perfect haha. I will keep trying till I find just the right one.

Monday, September 10, 2007

What's for Dinner

Awhile ago I was going to post our dinner menu from time to time and didn't do to well at keeping up with it.

Now that school is going again , I thought I would try one more time.

So last night's menu was.........

Chicken Parmesan
Rotini Pasta with Alfredo sauce
and for dessert we had Chocolate Molten Cake

Of course we had very mixed reviews.

Mark, not liking pasta only ate the chicken... after he scrapped off all sauce and breading and only ate the bread portion of the Bruschetta. The cake, he didn't like at all because, 1) he isn't a desert fan, 2) since it was semi sweet, it wasn't sweet enough for him therefore I put arsenic in it and was trying to kill him.

Hannah, doesn't like chicken so she only ate pasta but loved the cake and offered to eat daddy's

Ashley loved everything but the pasta because she only like red sauce and not white (her words) She had 4 pieces of Brushetta.

Me I loved it all even the cake until I just not looked at nutrition value and will never make again because I have 3 cakes left and have to now give them away or I will gain 20 lbs by eating just one more........

(now, cooking notes)
if you make the Brushetta, I learned that you can enjoy the next day also but if any leftover bread is now soft, toss in toaster!!

Chicken Parmesan Jamie's way,
drag chicken breast in whipped egg, dip in Italian bread crumbs with a bit of Parmesan cheese. Repeat again.
Place Chicken on foil lined cookie sheet. Cook in oven for 20 min. in 450 degree oven.
Transfer chicken to baking dish. Add one jar of spaghetti sauce top with mozzarella cheese and sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. Bake 10 more minutes.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Can we say Cheater?

A peek into a Jamie-Hannah conversation.

As I go thru Hannah's Friday folder I notice that as they practiced making the letter S this week all of Hannah's papers are marked with "Keep Practicing". So I say,

"Hannah, tomorrow we will go to Target and buy school paper to practice our letter S."

Hannah responds with crying and "no I don't want to practice, I don't want homework, I know how to make the letter S, see!! (as she points to the paper)

so I negotiate with "we can get a Starbucks at Target then come home and you and me both will make the letter S together I will help you ok?"

And of course to this she responds happily with " ok lets do that only you don't tell my teacher you did them and I will tell her I made the S's ok mom??"

ummm did I miss something here or did I just give my daughter the impression that not only am I taking her shopping and for Starbucks but I am also going to write a bunch of S's down on paper for her to turn into her teacher as her own??

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Who am I?

Ok so I must be honest with myself. I haven't been doing well at posting. I am avoiding the computer. SHH........ I think I might be suffering from a touch of depression.

Or..... can you get baby blues....... when your baby is almost 6?

I know so many of my friends are going thru some similar feelings right now. I suppose this is what happens when all of our wee ones are so close in age.

My heart breaks for all of us for our own individual dilemma's. OK what is she talking about you may be asking? With back to school time came....... the actual action of sending the kids back to school. This means our babies are being sent off to school. I mean us moms we thought about it with glee but did we really think about the actual part of doing it? I for one didn't. I had this dream scenario of get up , go to work, the kids run off to school, I come home, pick up a few things around the house, on days Mark was off stay home and actually spend time as a couple. Rediscovering each other (no not in a sexual way you perverts!!) but going to breakfast or lunch and talking, doing some sort of activity together, working on house projects together you know what I mean. Then going back to work finish up the day with cooking for family and all sharing stories of the day. On days Mark works, well then I would pick up extra work when I felt like it or just spend the day reading, or working on some hobby. Umm yeah well life is not like my dream idea of a day well spent. Therefore.........Well....... I think I should pull Hannah out of Kindergarten. I am not ready. Can I do that?? Can I hold her back for my own selfish reasons?

I am a wee bit jealous that she is loving it. It brings tears to my eyes seeing the excitement in her eyes at the end of every day. It hurts that she no longer needs me to walk her to her bus. How did she separate herself from me so quickly. And what does this say about me for not being able to move on. My baby is growing up. In fact she is no longer a baby but a little girl. No longer the toddler. Now just a kid.

Isn't it odd that leading up to this point it's always been, "boy I can't wait till the kids grow up and go to school then I have the day to myself." Now that time has come and I have no clue how to fill my day. We give up so much of ourselves for our children that we end up hollow shells of our former selves.

How much of who we are now as seasoned parents is who we were before embarking on the journey of parenthood? My afternoons are so quiet. I now realize I don't like the quiet. My house is staying picked up. I don't like a clean house. The dogs are now spending the days lying on the kids beds and you can hear their sad sighs thru the house. The cats ..... well you know Pebbles just spends the day freely chasing KiKi. (not much change there) Mark....... is doing spans of working 9 day in a row not much help there. And when he is home not so into being my playmate for the day. Asks me what the problem is this is what I have wanted for the past 3 years.

So anyway the point of all my babble is........ Who am I? What do I like? What do I enjoy? These are the new questions I have been asking myself and I honest to goodness can't answer. I can tell you what I did pre-kids. (Work and party and get drunk haha) I can tell you what I did in toddler stages (mommy and me classes, play dates, zoo's, museum's, story times, talk on phone for endless hours with other mommies about what it will be like when they go to school all day and how much fun we will have)

I don't remember it being this hard when Ashley went to school. I would go to the Y, work out, a few days a week I would babysit twins for 1/2 the day, come home clean, and then go pick her up. Maybe this means I lost more of myself over the past 7 years?

What are your experiences in this? When your children jumped from the nest, what did you do to fill the void? How do you find yourself?