Monday, March 31, 2008

So far behind...

I'm telling stories from 2 weeks ago. One day I'll catch up.

One of the decisions we made early on with Landon is that rather than try and occupy him with something else while we do housework or yardwork, we want to include him. The theory being that if he helps now, he'll just know that he should help later on. Or something naive like that. Things are so much more clear to you about raising kids before they're actually here - debunking your theories.

Anyway, as you know he currently already feeds the cats everyday, and "helps" when we clean the pool.

A couple weekends ago we changed the plugs and wires on the truck. (Among other things.) And of course, he was there to help.
After having changed the plugs and wires and shocks, we took the truck in to our regular mechanic to change the tires, balance them, do a wheel alignment, replace the brakes, adjust the parking brake, have the oil changed and apparently I had a turn signal out, which I didn't know before, but they also fixed. We spent a gabillion dollars on the truck for the tune up.

So on Friday, while I was driving around I went through a construction zone to pick up a Girl Scout book from the Girl Scout office and I hit a pot hole. Of course, because you can't spend a gabillion dollars without ruining something right after that also will cost a gabillion dollars.

So my truck started chirping. Like those bird whistles you put water in. It was only doing it at 40+ mph and when I made turns. I called Clint and he said it could be a wheel bearing so I took it straight over to the mechanic's shop. I was so pissed that after spending that gabillion dollars we'd have to spend more and probably have the alignment done again.

So I went in and told my story and they sent a guy out in my truck to listen to the sound.

He was gone, maybe 5 minutes. Maybe. Probably not even that long.

He asked if I was talking about the high pitched noise at higher speeds. Yes.

"Well, I just rolled up the window on the passenger side, and it's gone now."

I had hit that pot hole so hard, and I have crank windows, so it just bumped the window down enough to whistle, but not enough to see that it was down.

Good news? It was a free fix. Bad news? I felt like a moron.

I was also treated to the story of a woman who brought her car in like 4 times over a period of 3 months complaining of a noise, that they eventually found was the water jug she carried with her. They couldn't find it because everytime she left the car with them, she took the jug with her, until one day she came in and it was making the noise and she wanted them to drive it right then.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


These are the codes and books I have gathered thus far to take my test on the 11th.

I still have 2 at home and 4 that a friend has to copy. And I'm leaving out 4 that I couldn't find without paying big bucks.

Granted 3 of these binders and some of the books are not on the list, but I think they will probably be more helpful than any of the codes I may have to look something up in.
2 weeks to go.

The rest of the day

There were horses. Aunt Kelly introduced Landon to her 2 horses. He was less than impressed at the time, but when she brought out the rocking horse for him, he pretended to feed the rocking horse just like Aunt Kelly had fed the real horses.

Grandma had brought everyone a soccer ball. Each kid had their own size. There was some kicking. And some running.

And some general cousin bonding.

And then there was the trampoline. And while the trampoline was kind of scary at first, what with the bounciness of it, eventually Joshua had him walking across holding his hand.
If you ask Joshua, he was asked to make 14 eleventy billion trips back and forth. Not that he was complaining or anything. Just, you think he could do it by himself yet?

And then.

All of the sudden.

Joshua wasn’t right there to hold his hand.

And there was some hesitation, but once he figured out he could do it all by himself – he could have run circles around Joshua all day on the trampoline.

And then my camera died.

It was shortly after the trampolining that we headed home for fun filled evening of screaming.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

I want candy!!

So Easter #2 took place at my sister’s house.

We gathered all the kids in the house while the big guys hid the eggs. The big kids were instructed on which eggs they were not to mess with. And hunt began!

And then, since he knew there’d be candy in each egg, after gathering about 5 or 6, he stopped!

Who needs more eggs when you know your mom is only going to let you have so much candy anyway.

See all the eggs in the background? The big kids were told not to get those, but Landon refused to hunt any more. He'd rather sneak up on the already gathered eggs and see what he could get.

So he stopped hunting and ate all the candy he could get his little hands on.

Something we paid for dearly that evening. (And Monday morning apparently)

He was so tired, but couldn’t sleep. And refused any other kind of food.

And here is the only picture of all the cousins at once! Sure, it's the back of Brianna and Landon's heads, but they're there! (During the give me all your hard boiled eggs phase!)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Easter Eggstravaganza

On Sunday morning, we woke up a little later than usual. The Easter bunny had almost missed us.

I brought Landon downstairs, and we went to let the dogs out. And found the Easter bucket that had been left for him.

It had bubbles and colors, and a little parrot and a Buzz Lightyear cell phone. And a chocolate bunny!

We ate breakfast, got dressed and then we stepped out into the front yard.

The Easter bunny had hidden 12 eggs in the front yard.

With no instruction what-so-ever, he took one step out the front door, spotted an egg and he began the hunt.

He hardly even needed any hints, and he found all 12.

We discovered the tasty yumminess hidden inside the eggs, and after eating one egg worth of candy, the rest were ceremoniously emptied into a gallon baggie.

And since you can’t have a holiday without multiple celebrations, on this blog? It’s Easter all week long.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sugar Hangover

My camera is dead, we took so many pictures this weekend, that it died. And of course I forgot to charge it last night. So this week will be pictureful - but not today.

Nearly everything I was going to talk about deserves the pictures that go along with it. Faucet installation, Azalea planting, and of course Easter.

Landon had a bit of a sugar hangover yesterday evening.

After having discovered the tastiness that is contained inside those plastic eggs, he was NOT going to eat a hot dog. Or a chip. And only grudgingly drank a bottle of milk. He also only took a 20 minute nap between 7:45 am and 5 pm.

Of course, he was also out by the time we reached the corner after leaving Aunt Kelly's house. And when we got home, he went back to sleep for another hour and a half. And woke up and yelled at us and yelled at us - because I assume he had a sugar hangover, so I gave him some Tylenol. He ate 2 bites of eggs, one bite of oatmeal square, and drank another bottle before deciding to fight sleep for another 2 hours. Oh the dramatic squirming that occurred!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Dear Universe

Dear Universe,

Please quit giving me the finger.

When I logged on to check the years for the codes I needed for the PE exam yesterday, I was totally not expecting to find out that - while I had gone through all the chapters in my study book that I deemed necessary for the exam, I was not finished. You changed the test so that what had previously been 40% is now 20% and the other 20% is a construction section - on which I have very little guidance.

Previous to this discovery I felt really good about where I stood study-wise for this test. Now I am freaked out because I don't know what the heck you want me to study and the idea that I need 2 different codes about concrete formwork freaks me out.
Also not cool is the fact that I now need to haul around several extra 6 bazillion page codes, and while I know, that I will probably not use them, I don't want to be without them, just in case. You will get the bill from my chiropractor.

If I get a 67 again because of this crap, I'm coming after you.


22 days to go.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


As anyone with a toddler knows, routine is key. So every night after work, we get home, we eat dinner. We clean the kitchen. We feed the puppies and the kitties. We put on pajamas. We warm a bottle, and then we head upstairs to do a little playing. He has his night cap.

And if all goes well, eventually gets tired enough to actually close his eyes - preferably at 8:30, but even more preferably before 11pm, and before we start closing ours, but not always. If something else is happening, he of course needs to help. Like when last night I decided to make a search for the 2 elephants that went with his Noah's Ark.

Of all the developments this month, I think my favorite so far is that whatever we're doing? He wants to help.

Elephants are still missing. If you see 2 elephants wandering around, please send them home. I have a feeling they're hanging out somewhere with a couple bottles and maybe even some socks.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


The approach for getting your parents in the pool in February - didn't work in March. (yet)

Win some, lose some, I suppose.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Pool Boy in Training

We had beautiful weather this weekend. Although there was a small shortage of naps.

Landon always insists on doing what we're doing.

So if we're cleaning the pool? He wants to clean the pool.

So first, you get instructions from your dad.

Then you push.

Then you observe all the stuff you just pushed.

Then you pull.

It looks easier when other people do it, when you get the stick all to yourself, if might be a little heavy.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

I've been sitting here for 30 minutes

looking at a blank screen.

I do have an invitation to order 12 issues of Playboy for $12. Sent to Landon. I'm sure they don't realize they're marketing their porn to 17 month olds. But, I'm pretty sure they got the names from Hot Rod Magazine, and I doubt they thought a 17 month old would be subscribing to that either.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Scarlett ate a Roundup laden leaf and we've been dealing with the ensuing crap from that (pun intended) ever since. FYI, if your dog eats a leaf on which you have sprayed roundup - it is not poisonous. But it will upset their gastrointestinal workings. And you may have to clean their crate 2 nights running (possibly more, it's just that we're only working with 2 days worth of data here). And throw away 2 blankets and a towel. And wake up at 3 am, when they urgently need to go out (or alternatively you can clean up 2 piles of runny poo and 2 puddles of pee the next morning - your choice.)

I think we're on the backend of this illness (pun intended again.) Thank god.

And now that I've grossed you out, here's cute picture to tide you over until I think of something less gross to write about.

(I heard on the radio this morning that kids are starting to like classic rock because of the game Guitar Hero...classic rock like Pearl Jam...Pearl Jam is considered classic rock now? How old am I?)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


I guess I should start this by giving the poll results - 2 of you were right, except one of those 2 was Clinton, so that's cheating. The "other" vote was for "You should see the other guy!!" But the reality is that I dropped a car part on my head. Specifically, I dropped my babysitter's exhaust on my head.

Our babysitter’s suburban was acting all weird – like the transmission was going out, and the check engine light came on. So her husband went and got the codes read. The list was everything from plugs and wires, to a mass air sensor, and the catalytic converter. He did everything that was relatively cheap. And it still ran like crap. The last thing on the list was the catalytic converter. And it was doing exactly what mine did on the Pontiac when my catalytic converter was clogged.

So Clinton and I spent Friday morning working on her suburban.

First thing is removing the old catalytic converter. Which meant unbolting it and then discovering that we had to cut it out. (This is just 2 of the three pieces after we cut them out.)

The new part came in two pieces and we thought we could just slide the one piece past the transmission cross member. Not so much. We wasted about an hour trying to push it past that member, thinking it would be a lot of work to unbolt and rebolt the transmission cross member. Luckily it wasn't as much work as we thought and once we gave in and unbolted it, it slid right back in place and bolted right back up.

At one point I was holding up the exhaust and Clinton got up to get something - a crow bar or something - we were still trying to push it past the cross member and it wasn't going. And the exhaust seemed to be stuck in place. And I had no blood in my fingers. So I let go. Oh, hi Gertrude! Nice to meet you.

Anyway, 3 hours and one trip to the auto parts store later, our babysitter’s suburban “runs better than the day they bought it.” The good news is that when/if my truck catalytic converter gets clogged, we know exactly how to fix it, and we know that we should just take the cross member down and save time.

Clinton threatened that I would have to wear a hat for the rest of the weekend, that he thought people would think he beat me. To which I said, I’m not trying to hide it, they might think that if I was trying to hide it with make-up or something. But I am totally telling anyone who asks that you beat me with a ratchet.

We actually accomplished the entire repair without incident. Well, there was cussing. But not at each other. And Gertrude seems to have packed her bags, only a small scratch remains, and well, it's still bruised, but not so much red or swollen. I'm working on my inner Harry Potter.

Monday, March 10, 2008

An injurious weekend

Landon is fine, before you get all huffy and puffy, I am the only one who was hurt in the making of this post.

We did a lot of work around the house this weekend and I sustained 2 injuries and general soreness.

Injury #1:

We named her Gertrude.

I was so upset that I tried to then cut my own finger off for injury #2.
And knowing that things come in 3's I was completely paranoid for the rest of the weekend. I'll talk about Gertrude tomorrow, though, after the results of the poll are in.

We did get a lot of stuff done around the house this weekend - although it seems our list did not shrink.

Landon was helpful too. He took the trash out:

He's always concerned about safety:

He got tired of waking up to his squeaky door after I put him in bed at night, so he helped grease his hinges:

He helped rearrange the stuff on his shelf in his bedroom:

And he wanted to be absolutely sure that his crib had the safe distance between rungs:
I'm not sure what his plan was if they weren't, because we're not buying another crib.

Does anyone need anything drilled?

You should know that I had to upload these photos one at a time. It took forever. You're welcome.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Hiatus - Explained

I wasn’t going to write today, but then I couldn’t concentrate until I said some things. If you feel like this post is directed at you? It probably is, but I promise you, that you are not alone, this is not regarding a one time incident, this is regarding multiple incidents and multiple people, and it’s just something that generally needs to be cleared up before I can move forward with this blog.

I am as honest as I can be on this site. I relay stories how they happened, I do not embellish them for the thrill of the story. I steer clear of any controversial topics, because I am not that thick skinned.

I was well prepared for insults from the dumb trolls that might eventually show up, but the majority of my readership is people who actually know me. I think there are only 2 of you I have never met.

Since this site’s inception I have been called a lot of things. Things I am not. Things that were hurtful to me. By people who are supposed to care about me, at least peripherally, and by people I care about. Which, by all means, is worse than being called names by people who you don’t know.

These people called me these things, but they didn’t have the guts to talk to me directly, privately through email or publicly through a comment or even via phone call. They either told my husband, or they told someone else who told my husband. And that’s not fair to him. That he fields these complaints and dutifully brings them home to tell me, speaks volumes of our relationship. He is completely honest with me. And I appreciate that more than anything. (In return, I never ask him if my butt looks big in these jeans, because quite frankly – I don’t want to know if it does.)

But that grapevining of complaints against me? Is not fair to him. He doesn’t write this blog, and it shouldn’t be his responsibility to tell me if you have an issue with something I wrote. He didn’t write it. I did.

So from here on out – any complaints regarding the content of this site should either be left in a comment on the post you hold issue with, or in an email directly to me. My email is at the top of the page. (I will say as a disclaimer that I am more likely to respond to a comment in a timely fashion, because I only check that email maybe once a week.)

Complaints will be handled on a case by case basis. I write from my memory and my perspective, and if yours is different, I can’t help that. When you roll a die, we may both see a 3 on top, but I may also see a 6 facing me and you would see a 1 – that’s a fact.

If what I wrote is truly offensive, like a support of puppycide or something equally ridiculous, I will remove the material. I have already removed a portion of a post that upset someone. I will probably be more likely to add more explanation to things in the future rather than remove material. But you should know that this makes for a much longer and more boring post. Can we assume that I am generally not evil, that I don’t go around tripping children and kicking cats? That when I say “I almost left Landon out on the front porch in his car seat to see who came to get him.” That I don’t also have to add “but I didn’t and of course I never would, because I love him and that would be considered child abuse, and technically I don’t want to actually get rid of him, but he was driving me crazy. And of course by crazy, I don’t mean to insult anyone who has a mental disorder.” I mean, to me? That second part should be a known and I shouldn’t have to state it.

I told Clinton I was considering stopping. He said I can’t please everyone all of the time. And he’s right. (Write that down on your calendar, Clinton.)

Look for pictures on Monday.


I'm just not in the mood to do this today. I'll try again Monday.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Wonder Killer, Day Light Saving Time

I heard at my Girl Scout leaders' meeting that Day Light Saving Time started this weekend. And I had no idea. I mean Spring Forward, Fall Back and all that, but I didn’t know it was THIS weekend.

As is turns out, G. W. Bush signed into law the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Which, among other things, says that starting in 2007, DST will begin on the 2nd Sunday in March and ends the 1st Sunday in November. Until the Department of Energy study is complete, then they’ll decided whether to change it again.

So that means that this Sunday, everyone has to stay up all night and at precisely 1:59 am on March 9, they need to set their clocks forward to 3:00 am. (Or you can do it before you go to bed like any normal person. Or later on Sunday when you realize you’re an hour late for everything.)

Some interesting facts:

  • Why 2:00 am? – It’s supposed to minimize disruption. Something about trains.
  • What about restaurants and bars and alcohol? Do they get to serve for an extra hour in the fall? Technically – they’re not supposed to. But some do.
  • Who in America gave the old DST the finger and said no way? Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, and Arizona. I’m sure I left a few out.
  • Oh and most people say “Daylight Savings Time.” “Savings” should actually be “saving.”

More Info Here.
And Here.


Hey guess what? If you don't plug your camera into the charger for like 2 weeks and you use it like every day at least for about 10 minutes, eventually the battery dies. Go figure.

My gigantor of a test is in 5 weeks. I feel more prepared for it this time, but GAH - I'm already tired of studying. I have been given 15 tons of advice on this test and most of those people want me to spend $1500 on a class, but for some reason they aren't offering to pay for it.

I spent the last 2 evenings doing Girl Scout stuff, so I've got no cute stories or pictures or anything (not that I would be able to download pictures anyway - see dead camera.)

I'll try again tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Spa Pad Building

This weekend we went down to LJ to help my parents build a pad for the spa they bought.

And of course, we had a big helper.

And inspector.

This is it after all the wood work was done:

Then came leveling:

Then he ate lunch with the boys (even though technically he'd already eaten lunch with the girls):

And also - we got a new second cousin yesterday. Nicholas Rowland.