Thursday, June 28, 2007

A couple pictures...

On Tuesday we met my Mom at McDonalds in Marysville for lunch. I snapped this pic before we left... Ethan had gotten into Daddy's hair gel and I had to mohawk it to make it look like it was something planned and not just curious fingers getting into trouble.

Yesterday we met April and her son Gibson and another friend from my message boards, Alyssa and her two boys Andrew and AJ. This was the first time we'd met Alyssa, though both April and I knew her from online. She lives about 5 minutes from us and her boys are really close in age to mine so I'm hoping we can continue to meet up and let the kids play!

I didn't get many pics as I spent most the time chasing the children. Having a playground right next to a lake looks great, but is major trouble for toddlers!

Two ladies, who I did not know, asked me if I was Ethan's Mommy. I said I was and they commented that they figured Ethan was Gwen's brother because they looked like twins and they both looked just like me! When they asked Ethan if he had a sister, he said, "Yes". Then they asked how old he was and he said, "I'm 2 and getting older!". Heh.

April (who is 9 months pregnant) and Gibson (2, today!)

Ethan playing ball with AJ (4)

End of the day and my kids were getting tired.

We saw the oddest thing coming home the other day. It was about 1pm and we were about to turn onto our street when I saw something cross the street. I thought, oh, a cat. But it wasn't... it was a raccoon! A big one too. He was totally not scared by us and just ambled back to the sidewalk and waited until we drove on to cross. Strange! I guess it makes sense that there are raccoons around here, but I don't recall ever seeing a LIVE one.

Monday, June 25, 2007

I've churned out a few more items of clothing and I'm quite proud of them.

First was this peasent style shirt (Simplicity 3732). The only thing I do not like is that the sleeves are a little wingy and the opening where the tie joins isn't as large as I'd like. Both things are easily changed next time though :)

(note to self: smile!)

After that I tackled the first skirt from my Amy Butler Barcelona Skirts pattern. The layered skirt. It was much easier than I thought it would be, though somewhat tedious because there are many peices to join together.

Here's a close up... you can see how there isn't a folded hem where the pieces join, they're just overlapped. It will fray slightly with time... that is part of its look.

(another note to self: learn how to take better self portraits!)

Saturday, June 23, 2007

I am feeling like the worst Mom and wife today. Heck, I'm feeling like a pretty bad person in general. I'm wishing that everyone would just go away and leave me alone for a bit. *sigh*

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Yesterday was horrible.

It started out fine, me having a slight headache but nothing worth bitching about :) I was able to wash all the laundry we had piled up (a frightening amount) and sort it, and clean the kitchen from top to bottom. By the time I'd finished this though, my head hurt considerably more.

I was stupid and hoarded my migraine meds and instead took two Percosets I had from when Gwen was born. Why. Why did I do this when I know that Percosets mess me up? Anyway, I could barely keep awake after taking those so I put the kids down for nap and laid in bed, drifting off now and then. Jason woke me at 5 and my head hurt even worse than before.

Jason made us some pizza and I forced down one tiny slice before popping two tylenol and two advil. Another mistake. Within 1 1/2 hour I had barfed it all up and couldn't stand alone I was so dizzy and ill. My dear husband really showed his stuff by taking care of the kids all night, making dinner and tending to me. I crashed into bed at 8:30, thinking I'd take my migraine meds at 9. But when Jason came up at 9 I was asleep, clutching my meds in my hand. We decided that since I was so tired we should skip it for now and try and sleep it off.

Well, indeed, I seem to have slept most of it off. Its still in the back of my head, tickling my eyes now and then, but it seems under control. I've not had a migraine that bad in years and while I often feel dreadfully nauseous, I can't remember ever throwing up! Horrible stuff.

Saturday, June 16, 2007


Long day, long week, long month!

Today was a busy day... we went out to Lowes and got some stuff to fix our fence and gate, I updated (sorry, I can't think of a better word for it) all the bushes by removing their dead flowers and did a bit more trimming of some trees that seem to be growing 2 feet a day.

After lunch and putting the kids down I made a quick "jaunt" up to Arlington. I say that somewhat sarcastically because it turned out to be much farther away then I suspected. In any case, I went up there because I made a request on Freecycle for old sheets, linens, tablecloths, etc to experiment with and maybe score some good pieces for clothing (pillowcases can make cute dresses for girls). I definitely got some good stuff, including one awesomely retro rainbow pillowcase which is going to make a kick-butt dress. Then I went to CraftStar and found some Bob the Builder and Thomas the Train fabric and a pattern for kids boxers and am going to make them into stuff for Ethan and Gwen. THEN I went to Safeway and did some grocery shopping. The whole ordeal took like 4 hours when I had thought it would take 2.

Since I was so late I had to fly once I got home. I immediately started on Jason's special dessert for tonight, Blackberry Hand Pies.

Once I had those going I started on dinner, Mom's Baked Fried Chicken served with mashed potatos.

While that was cooking we headed outside and scooped the lawn, picked up toys, moved some dirt and refilled our bird and squirrel feeders. We finally sat down to eat around 7:30 and right now is the only time I've sat for more than 10 min since 4:30. Whew.

I've been feeling down this week, and I know that tomorrow will be tough too. I miss my Grandpa. I miss him so much.

I did a silly thing and put the songs I used on his slide show on my mix CD I keep in the car. Every time I hear those songs,it feels like my insides get turned over. It still doesn't feel real. For a long time now I was feeling ok with it, but now I don't again. The last time I spoke to him and he spoke to me, the last time I held his hand, the last time I saw his eyes, gave him a hug, smelled his cologne and pipe tobacco. These moments play over and over in my head these last few days. As strange as it sounds, I don't think I ever expected him to die before me. He seemed so permanent.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Look what I made today from a beautiful Belle fabric by Amy Butler... in like 2 hours. Nearly perfect technique and best all, wearable outside the house! I'm so proud of myself. Excuse the puffy eyes please, by the time I took this picture I was so tired.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Today I am SuperWoman!

Today while I was putting the finishing touches on making the kitchen sparkle, I noticed that there was a big old puddle of water in my cleaning supplies bin that is stored under the sink. Hoping it was just a leaky bottle, I investigated more and found that it was coming from the disposer... from inside the disposer. Googling informed me that this was quite bad.

Luck was on our side, as we had a disposer on hand from the old house that we never got around to installing. It was the same make and slightly newer model. I was going to wait until Jason got home but then I was like, "My entire free time will be taken up by waiting and then installing the thing. I'd rather sew." So I got the kids some lunch and set to work.

The old one...

Upon disconnecting the drain pipe, I found this lovely ick. This wasn't causing the leak, but pretty darn yucky just the same.

The wiring was the easiest part of the whole deal.

There was a holdup when the new disposer had a slightly longer attachment ring than the old one, thus preventing that cross pipe from fitting. I tried everything, but finally broke out the hacksaw and took off about 1/2 inch. Voila! I was quite proud of myself for doing that.

My finished project. All done with two interested toddlers trying to screw things on and off and run away with dirty pipes and wanting to pick through the ick and sitting on my lap saying, "I helping you Mommy".

I am good.
Here is that other video... its of them wrestling and chasing. Please excuse the state of the house.

Ethan and Gwen wrestling

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Here are the videos I promised a few days ago. Dropshots over on the right side of this page doesn't want to show them so I'll link them here directly from my MySpace account. There is one I'll have to put up later because MySpace is still processing it.

Singing kids 1

Kids singing 2

Singing kids 3

Friday, June 08, 2007

Yesterday was another tiring day. Grammy came to watch the kids at 10am and I went out and ran some errands, went to the library and grocery shopped. Got back at around 1:30, fought the kids to bed and crashed myself on the couch.

Unfortunately, Ethan started getting sick at around dinnertime. He didn't want to eat, which isn't unusual, but he kept saying his tummy hurt and then his head started hurting too. By the time he went to bed he was burning up. We dosed him with Advil and hoped for the best. However, by 10pm we'd already been up 3 times with the kids, and it didn't stop. At 11 I brought Ethan into our bed because he was uncomfortable and still very hot... 103.3 with Advil still in his system! For whatever reason he was SO talkative. At 12pm, we gave him some Tylenol and that seemed to help but at this point Gwen was waking up constantly and saying, "Snuggle me". She refused to let me lay her down even after nursing. Oh, and the best part? Finding out at 1am that you have no diapers in the freaking house! Yeah. That was just great. Suffice to say that I ended up sleeping on the nursery floor with Gwen (who insisted on having her little arms wrapped around my head in order to sleep) while Ethan and Jason slept in our bed. The second best part was getting up at 5am.

Ethan is doing much better today though. Despite picking over his breakfast he was feeling more upbeat.

We went outside and did a huge amount of work. I like living bumped up to this NGA (natural growth area). We wouldn't have chosen the house if it didn't have it... provides so much privacy and shade. Problem is, the NGA keeps trying to invade our postage stamp yard. So I hacked and slashed and dug up and pulled weeds and basically got myself filthy dirty and sweaty. Then I prepped our raised bed for grass. Unfortunately, the raised bed was more or less a dumping ground for waste soil so everything we've tried to plant has failed. I've given in and will just plant grass there and when folks come they can sit on it and it will be like extra seating. So we hacked at the soil, trying to get at least 2-3 inches of loose dirt. Then we picked out the rocks, of which there were many. Ethan finally was able to use his "Muck" (enormous dump truck) for its rightful purpose! Moving dirt and rocks :) Then we spread the seed, raked, filled in the spots and watered. We're hoping for the best!

Due to all his hard work, Ethan devoured 3 snacks and lunch with nary a complaint. Gwen was so tired she asked to nurse and before I could get her latched on she was asleep. So they're both in bed right now and I dashed out to put up our new squirrel/bird feeder. FINALLY I can shower. The only clean part of me at this moment are my fingers and technically, there is dirt under my fingernails !

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Utter weariness.

We had a loooong day. It wasn't supposed to be that way, but thats how it ended up.

It started simply enough. Head down to Spartan Gym to play in their open gym. Its in Shoreline, but even with traffic I can make it in 20 min. After we get down there (and all the mayhem that is involved with early morning departures), we find out that its CLOSED for the summer. Poop.

Two disappointed toddlers wanted to know what Mommy was going to do, so off to the mall we went to play in their indoor playground. It was crowded and the Mommies seemed somewhat hostile (don't think I saw a single smile). Perhaps we were all having a rough morning.

After we were done playing, I wanted to pop into the Mariners store to get Jason and the kids some new caps. Not wise. When will I learn? The place is packed full of overpriced knickknacks and toys, just begging to be played with. I walked out with 4 caps (all really really cute, including a stylish brown/pink one for me) and TWO fingers. You know, you hold them up and they say, "We're #1" and stuff. Why fingers and why two you might ask? Well, because my kids chewed on them in full sight of an employee. What else could I do?

After bribing the kids into the car with the promise of a McD's lunch (gag), we headed to Mountlake Terrace to pick up a sewing table I got off craigslist for $10. Its worn, but for $10. you really can't lose. With a good cleaning it will be ready to install in my sewing room. All I need now is a large table for cutting.

We got lost after leaving the lady's house and wandered through Lake Forest Park and eventually ended up on Lake City Way. Took the very very very long way home and detoured by the Bothell house, the one I grew up in. Wow. It looks bad :( For one, its once pastoral setting is ruined... there is tract housing surrounding it. Secondly, the people have all sorts of broke-ass cars in the yard and its unmowed and trimmed. Breaks my heart a little bit.

Finally we get home at around 12:30 and the kids have been sleeping for about 30 min. This is bad because it means they might not take a nap later. I keep them up till 2 (they are whining the ENTIRE time) then put them down, but they don't actually fall asleep till 3.

At this point, I'm pretty worn out but I can't let myself skip a day of chores so I sweep and spot mop the floors. Jason vacuumed when he got home, bless him.

Luckily, dinner was mostly prepared yesterday. I cooked chicken broth all day ... over 8 hrs. I was left with this dark, fragrant, chicken stock. One taste and you feel rather restored down to your bones. I made some matzo balls to go in it and threw in some carrot batons, thyme, and shredded chicken. It was a light, refreshing, yet satisfying meal. And there is enough left over to feed an army.

Chicken soup for the soul indeed!

Tomorrow morning I should have some videos to put up of the kids. Cute footage.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

I wanted to post pictures of my roses before the die and I have to wait for new blooms!

The one is by far the largest in the garden. You can see that its as big as my hand (and I have big man hands)! Its odor is like sugar. Super sweet.

I like the water on the petals in this pic. This is my traditional rose. Smells and looks great!

My favorite one in the garden. These just opened (there are about 10 other buds about to open too). They smell like sun-ripe tomatoes. Ok, that sounds kinda dorky, but its true. Its a wonderful smell.

Another huge bloom. These have a light citrus smell.

My second favorite rose for smell, my favorite for color! These smell very good... like limes mixed with sugar.

View of the front of the house. My purple rhodies are dying back but still have color! I love my orange azalea too!

Friday, June 01, 2007


I've been working my toosh off the last few days. Hacking, pruning, pulling, planting, fertilizing, spreading compost (from my Mom and incredibly rich and dense) and planning. I do believe there is a slight skin differentiation on my back (i.e. I call it a tan, but everyone else is like, "where?").

What is rather sad is that its nothing that people would notice. Its been background work, getting ready for bigger stuff. I'm re-doing our gate area. The previous owners planted... stuff...? back there that requires far too much tending for stuff that looks like weeds. I moved the plants I liked, then tomorrow I'll have Jason mow the rest down, then I'll kill it all. We'll then lay fresh gravel on the path and over the flower beds. As this particular area isn't visible from the door or most of the backyard, I have no idea why they planted all this crap back there.

Everything is blooming though. With the warm weather, lots of roses have popped out. One bush has beautiful pink/white blooms as big as my hand and smells like heaven. I should get a picture because those, along with my purple rhodies and yellow, red and orange roses make a very pretty picture. None of my backyard roses have bloomed yet but my dahlias are just about ready to burst.

I also fought a nasty, bloody battle with the encroaching blackberry bushes. They started growing through the trees with vines that were nearly an inch thick. I hacked and slashed and will spray them tomorrow as well. I like having a dense undergrowth behind our yard (keeps the dog and kids in) but I can't have these people eaters hanging in the yard, just waiting to snag a victim.

Recently, I've been watching the mini-series, "Roots". I thought I'd seen it as a child, but I don't think so now. None of it seems familiar. However, its fantastic. Utterly, completely, wonderfully fantastic. I think everyone should see it. I have 3 more DVD's to go and I already want to restart from the beginning.

Oh, and finally, my watch arrived! I can't recall if I mentioned it before, but Jason got me a fancy timepiece for Mothers Day but it was DOA. So we sent it back and heard nothing for two weeks. They didn't return phone calls or emails. So finally Jason gets them on the phone and they sent the watch to be repaired and were going to send us that one. Uh, no. We bought a NEW watch and we want a NEW watch. Not a refurb. Two days later my beautiful watch appeared and I just love it. Its a Citizen Eco-drive J Class. Solar powered baby!

Well off to bed to watch my latest Roots installment.