Thursday, June 28, 2007

Welcome to the next generation

Tink's sitting in the floor next to me, reading a book about fairies. And when I say reading, I mean making up and telling a story quietly to herself, while she looks at the pictures. This is what I just heard:

That's all for now. If you want to come visit us again, just type W-W com, Fairyland. Then type Go To Fairyland. Thanks for visiting.

I just don't know what to say.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

WFMW - Cheap Labels

This summer, my goal is to get our home more organized from top to bottom. That includes the girls' closets, the pantry, my desk, the bathrooms and anything else that I can get to. I get lots of good ideas from Org Junkie and other organizational blogs, most of which involve containers and labels.

I've been finding great containers at Dollar Tree, and things are going pretty good. I'm actually excited. Except I can't find my 7-year-old label maker (see above: Need To Get Organized). And I don't have funds to purchase another.

So I've come up with the poor girl's label maker: Scotch Tape and a Sharpie. That's right, boys and girls. Scotch Tape and a Sharpie. And it doesn't even have to be Scotch, but I think it does have to be a Sharpie. Have you seen all the fabulous colors Sharpies come in these days? It's mind-boggling. But I've got to be careful, or I'll spend more on Sharpies than I would on a new label maker.

So. I'm assuming you get the idea, but I'll go ahead and give some details. First, you decide where you want the label. Then, you tear off a piece of tape. Next, you put the tape where you want the label. And finally, you write what you want on your label. Voila! And it's even removable!

Here's a bonus: On large tubs and boxes, we use packing tape and a Sharpie. Same method, of course. Stick with what works.

Now don't laugh, y'all, cause I really love my poor girl labels. They Work For Me. Now go on over to Shannon's and check out all the Wednesday wisdom.

Check it out

Here are some fun, thought-provoking, or otherwise interesting items I've come across recently:

This post from DeeDee at Coulda Been Worse is both informative and dadgum hilarious. If you're a homeschooler or interested in homeschooling, read the whole thing. If you couldn't care less about homeschooling, please oh please scroll down to the last little part, because have I mentioned it's hilarious?

Home Ec 101 has a great idea for dealing with the little angels' bickering.

And look at these loverly contests:

You know 5 Minutes For Mom always has such wonderful giveaways, and this one is no exception. There are so many prizes I've lost count, and it's all in honor of Independence Day. Check it out!

Making a House a Home is celebrating her one-year bloggiversary with a very generous giveaway! If I don't win, I hope you do!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Please pray for Amy today.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

I am SO not ready for this!

So I'm sitting on the bed this afternoon, clipping coupons and minding my own business. I was watching Adoption Story on the DVR, and Pooh and Tink came in and started watching with me. I figured it might be a nice conversation starter if they had any questions about being adopted.


Here's a brief synopsis of the conversation:

Tink: Oh, she's so sad! She's the Mom, but she had to give her baby away?

Me: (Simple yet wonderfully profound yet vague explanation) Blah blah blah teenager, blah blah blah married, blah blah blah God, blah blah blah (I hope I'm not scarring you for life or being politically incorrect, but who really cares if I'm politically incorrect, except I hope I'm not being insensitive to the plight of birth mothers...ACK!)

Tink: So she did what God wanted her to do?

Me: Wait...what?

Tink: Well, since she wasn't married, she did the right thing and gave the baby to a Mommy and Daddy who are married?

Me: Well, not always...I mean...blah blah blah...sometimes people who aren't married...uhm, I mean...blah blah blah...not everyone...ACK!

Please note that Big Daddy was in the room but seemingly engrossed in the computer. Pooh participated in the conversation too, but Tink quickly assumed the role of Lead Interrogator.

Tink: So then why did God put the baby in her tummy if she wasn't married?

Me: (Oh crap, here it comes!) Well, God meant for us to...when a Mommy and Daddy get married...except sometimes people don't wait...sometimes teenagers do things only Mommies and Daddies are supposed to do, and that makes a baby. Do you remember when you asked me how the babies get out of the tummy?

Pooh: (whispering) They come out...down there.

Tink: (not whispering) FROM OUR PRIVATES!!!!

Me: Right. So blah blah blah egg...blah blah Daddy...sperm...tadpole...(please don't ask me how it gets in there, please don't ask me how it gets in there, I can Google sperm and show it to her, but I don't want to tell her how it gets in there! I can't do this, PLEEEEEAAAASE) and God makes the baby start growing inside the Mommy.

Tink: Huh. Can I watch Kim Possible now?

Me: You bet your sweet ass you can!**

So later I ask Big Daddy: Did you hear what was going on over there?

BD: Yeah. Good job.

Me: Man, I kept looking your way, and you didn't blink, you didn't glance, you were like a Bubble Shooter computer-game-playing stone! Couldn't you at least give a girl a thumbs up or a grin or cut your eyes or something? Throw me a bone, man!

BD: Yeah. I was afraid if I made any sudden moves, she might start asking me questions, too.

Way to be there for me, Babe!

** I did not say "sweet ass" to my 6-year-old. But I sure thought it.

Saturday, June 23, 2007


I stumbled across Word Wise a few months ago and immediately added it to my Google Reader subscriptions. It's billed as "Writing tips for public relations professionals – and for people everywhere," and I love correct grammar.

Now don't get me wrong; I can talk like a hick with the best of 'em, and I do it often. But I still like to know what's correct and what's not, even if I choose not to comply.

The most recent post is about the rampant misuse of "myself." It's like this guy has a mind-reading machine and knows what's driving me crazy this week.

Friday, June 22, 2007

She's not mine, but she's great!

I don't even know what to name this post.

Overheard in the next room:

Tink: Wanna go dancing before I have a baby?

She continues to beg the others to dance with her. Over and over. And over and over. Tink is very persistent.

Tink: If you don't dance with me, I'm going to have a baby!

Scooter: I'm trying to make a 'cision!

Tink: I'm ready to have my baby now! You have to marry me so we can have a baby!

Y'all, that wasn't even the worst of it. Good night Irene, I'm gonna have lots to post about this summer!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

WFMW - Summer Schedule

Wow, I can not believe it's been almost a week since I've posted! It always takes me a while to get back on track after a schedule change. And of course, school's out for the summer, which is a major schedule change.

The first week school was out, I had a project to do for my dad, so I packed the girls up and went to his house every morning, then we came home and bounced off the walls every afternoon.

Once that project was complete, we got busy catching up on doctor and other appointments. We've been to the pediatrician twice, two ophthalmologist appointments and the gastro doctor, along with at least 3 other miscellaneous appointments.

So, that's why I haven't posted much. But I'm getting into the swing of things. Now, let's get to what Works For Me.

I had forgotten how aimless my girls can be when school is out. They seem almost desperate to "have a good time" every minute of every day. And they're often disappointed. Because life isn't always a good time. Sometimes it's just life. After the first week of "freedom," I remembered how we got through last summer: The Schedule.

Our schedule isn't any rigid, minute-by-minute boot camp thing. It's more of a nice soft set of boundaries that bounce the girls along through their day. What I've done is set up a basic hourly schedule, something like this:

9:00 - Breakfast and Morning Chores
10:00 - Inside Play Time
11:00 - Outside Play Time
12:00 - Lunch
1:00 - Rest Time
3:00 - Chores
4:00 - Learning Time
5:00 - Baths, help with dinner

These one-hour blocks get switched around, depending on how much time we're actually at home and whether I'm babysitting. And any time someone doesn't want to do what's on the schedule, they can read on their beds instead. You get the general idea.

Morning Chores consist of everyday things like watering the dogs, taking out the trash and unloading the dishwasher. Afternoon Chores are whatever housekeeping things we're working on that day, and can include laundry, vacuuming, dusting, cleaning bedrooms or whatever.

Inside Play Time is limited to one or two activities per one-hour block. Otherwise, the girls are restless and don't seem satisfied with anything. They get to choose the activity, but once they do, they stick with it.

Rest Time may be a nap if someone's had a rough morning, but usually just means everyone's in my bed watching a movie.

Learning Time can be computer games, Leap Frog, workbooks, coloring, or watching an educational show on TV. I tape lots of Animal Planet and other educational shows on the DVR, so we have a good selection.

We also throw in a fun craft about once a week, and try to go to the park or library once a week, too.

This works so well for my girls. We fine tune the schedule together every morning, and they seem so much more settled when they know what to expect. It sure beats having them wandering around the house wondering what to do.

So. Summer schedule - Works For Me! Now go on over to Shannon's and find some great ideas to make your life easier.

UPDATE: The key here is flexibility! For example, we stayed up late last night, so everyone slept in this morning. Praise the Lord! We also have a lot of laundry to do. So, today our schedule will look something like this:

10:30 Breakfast and Morning Chores/Laundry
11:30 Inside Play/Laundry
1:00 Ready for Lunch?
2:00 Rest Time while folding clothes
4:00 Learning Time/Laundry
5:00 Baths, etc.

Really, really works for us!


Don't mess with a good thing! My girls have been playing nicely in their room for well over an hour. I'm obviously not going to put an end to this wonderfulness because the schedule dictates it. When things start going downhill, we will return to our regularly scheduled activities. In the meantime, I'm just enjoying it!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Bring on the strawberries!

Since our girls were adopted through foster care, the information we received about their backgrounds and medical history is...spotty, to say the least.

Before our adoption was finalized, we received copies of the CPS files; if everything is piled in one stack, it's over a foot tall. Unfortunately, it's not because there's that much information. It's because they copied everything 3 or 9 times.

So. In all of this voluminous paperwork, there are at least 30 separate pages that indicate Tinkerbell is allergic to strawberries. And this is one of the first things that she ever told me, on the very first night I met her, "I'm 'lergic to strawberries." She didn't know what it meant exactly. "Strawberries might make me throw up."

For almost 3 years, my sweet Tink has been diligent, sometimes more diligent than me. We check every label; "Is it fake strawberry or real strawberry or no strawberry?" And all this time, it's made me crazy that there's no proof. Just words on paper.

So finally, last week, I asked the doctor if we could check it out. I thought they would do that scratching on the back with the grid thing or whatever, like I've seen on TV. But no. My sweet baby had to have blood drawn. For the third time in three years. But guess what?

She's not allergic to strawberries!

And guess what else? I forgot to tell her for two days. I know; I'm an awful mom. But I told her last night, and she begged Big Daddy to go to the store and buy strawberries. But I wouldn't let her eat them at night, because I didn't want her to go into anapha-whatever shock while I was asleep. Just in case the test was wrong.

But this morning, make no mistake. Miss Tinkerbell had Strawberry Banana Yogurt, and real strawberries on the side.

She's not crazy about the plain strawberries. Figures.

Am I crazy?

Oh my goodness, y'all, we are definitely hitting a milestone here in the Dirty Laundry Household.

My big girl is going to visit her Nana and Grandpa in California. By herself. For three weeks.

Oh. My. Goodness.

Am I crazy? I didn't think I was, but now I'm not so sure!

Big Daddy and I started talking a few weeks ago about letting Pooh fly out to California for a couple of weeks this summer, to visit his Dad and stepMom. You know, just sort of talking about it in vague, generic terms.

Then. Sunday night on the phone, I mentioned it to his stepMom. And she says, "Oh yes, Dad and I have already talked about having her come spend some time with us this summer, and two weeks isn't long enough. And we'll pay for it."

Ho Ly Crap.

So the past few days have been spent trying to decide what to do, how to do it and when to do it. Today I sat down in front of the computer (or maybe I was already there) and started seriously going through all our options. Airline flights are hard to find for an unaccompanied minor. American Airlines charges $150 extra round trip for UAs. But Southwest Airlines doesn't. But oh yeah, I couldn't find any reasonably priced flights with no connections.

Until this afternoon. And lo and behold, there is a one-way flight from Their Town to Our Town for only $107. So we booked it.

So in a couple of weeks, we'll drive her about halfway, and Grandpa will meet us to pick her up. Then when the trip is over, my capable big girl will get on a big old airplane and fly for the first time. By herself.

What was I thinking?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

WFMW - Shopping for Barbie

Y'all, I have a lot of girls. Three, to be exact, plus me. Plus the friends that come to visit, plus the get the picture.

And my lot of girls have lots of Barbies. Lots. Of. Barbies. So many that we have placed a moratorium on further Barbie purchases.

Here's the thing, people. No matter how gorgeous Barbie is on that shelf in the store, give my girls 24 hours, and she's gonna be naked in a tub with frizzy hair. Mermaidia Barbie? She's naked in the bathroom. Fairytopia Barbie? Naked with frizzy orange hair and a breastplate. Sleeping Beauty Barbie? Looks like she's been rode hard and put up wet.

So. Moratorium on Barbie purchases. But there are currently around 20 of the anatomically impossible bimbos in residence, along with their wardrobes, horses, cars and accoutrement. And the Queen of Dirty Laundry can not stand Barbie crap all over the floor. It makes me itch.

So. The last time the girls had a friend over to play, which somehow causes them to lose their ever lovin' minds, I unveiled my master plan for Barbie domination. They brought all the containers of clothes, shoes, and accessories to my bedroom, where I was hard at work reading blogs. And I told them that if Barbie wanted new clothes, then she had to come shop in my bedroom.

Y'all, it worked. All the clothes and shoes stayed in their boxes! There were none on the floor! And the girls thought it was great fun to come shop for Barbie's clothes in my bedroom, One Outfit At A Time!

Granted, this little tip will only be beneficial for those with Barbie overload or OCD like I have. But, it Works For Me.

There are lots more tips over at Shannon's. Go check 'em out!

Monday, June 11, 2007

It's Here!

Boys and Girls, the day has finally arrived. It's my 29th Birthday. Again. For the gazillionth time. Today is the culmination of the Birthday Weekend Extravaganza.

I had my Birthday Cranberry Muffins from Target for breakfast. Along with an icy cup of Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper. The breakfast of Birthday Queens.

I will continue in my reign as Birthday Queen by doing exactly what the heck I want to, all day long. Within reason. Of course, I will have to feed the minors and canines. I still have to break up fights. But I might just do it all from my bed. While watching All My Children or Surprise by Design on the DVR.

And tonight, Big Daddy and I will spend quality time together while Grammy and Grandaddy babysit. It may not be fancy, but it will definitely be special.

I'm a lucky girl.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Birthday Weekend Update

The Birthday Weekend Extravaganza is in full effect. Except it's not what someone else might call extravaganzic (like my new word?). But it's my weekend, and I'm loving it.

Here's how this works in our little family. The Birthday Girl (or boy) gets to do whatever they want for pretty much the entire weekend. Now, fortunately for Big Daddy and my girls, I am oh, so easy to please. I don't need big expensive presents (although I wouldn't turn one down). I don't care about a fancy dinner out (although that's nice sometimes). I just want to do what I want, when I want, for the entire weekend. And for the most part, that's exactly what I've done.

Yesterday, Big Daddy had to work. Wah. So the girls and I laid around the house until around 10, and then I had to run to the bank, drop something off at the church, and run a couple other errands. Before we came home, we ran by Best Buy to spend a gift card that I won during Fantasy Football season. You guessed it, I used it on the girls. But that was my intention; I wanted to get them some new computer games. And I got some great deals.

P.S. I also saw some wonderful, delicious and shiny laptops. I coveted them. But I repented.

I then took a nap, which was lovely, after which we did a whole lot of nothing. There was (were?) television viewing, tickle fights and ice cream; also lovely.

This morning we slept in a little and went to late church. My poor girls are so tired right now, because after church, we went on a Birthday Extravaganza Whirlwind of Running Around. It began at Khaki's, which is a great hamburger place near us. From there it continued at various shopping venues, which made me extremely happy. Did you know that Bath and Body Works scheduled their semi-annual sale to coincide with my birthday? How great are they?

And finally, we stopped to look at a humongous Open House in a neighborhood that we dream about sometimes. It was awesome. And 4 times the price of our house. Sigh.

Now, we're all exhausted and the rest of my family is watching The Shaggy Dog. And I am oh, so happy. Because even though it's been a rough few weeks, God is good, and I am happy.

Did someone mention a Giveaway?

Here it is, y'all. 5 Minutes for Mom's Father's Day Giveaway, Part 2.

This time it's the Rocketfish™ Twister Wireless Laser Notebook Mouse, offered by those crazy cats at Best Buy.

Go on over to 5 Minutes for Mom to find out how to enter.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Link Day

Here are a few posts I've read this week that I wanted to share with you. Some made me laugh, some made me think, some are dang good information, and some just made me smile real big. Enjoy.

Katherine at Raising Five wrote a beautiful post about the struggles and uncertainties of parenting. "Are you trying to be perfect, or are you willing to offer God your best, whatever that is?"

Dcrmom at Musings of a Housewife writes a thought-provoking post about Conspicuous Consumption.

I love, love, love Freebie Friday at MotherLoad: The MomAdvice Blog.

Here's a great list of practical baby shower gifts. They're great suggestions, especially for repeat moms-to-be.

Just cute.

And finally, Big Mama always makes me smile, and today was no exception. They're talking about classic country music over there, which I do dearly love.

Have a great weekend, y'all!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Scooter: Mom, I need to go baffroom.

Me: Okay, bring me the toilet paper. (She has questionable toilet paper skills)

Scooter: Yes Sam. I love follow yours drekshuns.

We tear, we fold, she walks away.

Scooter: Thanks, Mom.

Me: Thank YOU.

Scooter: No, Thank YOU! I love you, Mom.

Who cares if parenting is hard? It is so totally worth it.

Contest, Contest, I love a Contest!

There are so many great contests around the blogosphere these days. Here are a couple that are going on right now.

5 Minutes for Mom is giving away a 6-month membership to Netflix. Go on over there and check it out! They also have a 2-part Father's Day giveaway.

Design Mom hosts great Random Giveaways. Take a look at the latest here!

Good luck, all.

Oh, and did I mention it's my Birthday Weekend? Let the spoiling commence.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour… I Peter 5:8 KJV

Folks, over the past few weeks, our family has been attacked, it seems, at every turn.

Physical? Yep.
Mental? Oh yeah.
Professional? Definitely.
Emotional? For sure.
Spiritual? Somewhat.

And I am happy to tell you this:

Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39 KJV

My friends, we are victorious.

We are more than conquerors.

I love Romans 8, oh yes I do. And I love my Lord. And I love my husband. And I love my children.

And we are more than conquerors.

Casting all your cares on him because he cares for you.

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. I Peter 5:7-9, KJV/NIV

Friends are Good.

My friend gave me this and this today, for my (early) birthday present. I love these guys! I had the little one, but it broke, so we had to lay him to rest. But I've never even had the privilege of owning the big one, so I am so excitick, as my girls would say.

Thanks, Karen. You rock.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Daddy's Girl

Y'all, my diva is in the bedroom playing NASCAR. I honest-to-goodness just heard her say, "Gentlemen. Start. Your. Engines!"

Her Daddy will be so proud.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Murphy visits the Dirty Laundry Household

These are things that would annoy me today if I were the type to complain which I am not, oh no ma'am, I am not. I'm just making a list is all.

Why, oh why, when I give one of my darling daughters an inch, must she attempt all the miles in the Daytona 500?

Why must same said daughter do her assigned chores half-way, and then swear to buddah that they're complete? "I'm sure, mom, oh yes I am. I checked, and it's all done." "Honey, if I go check and there's anything left on the table (for example), then you'll get a consequence." "I'll go check again."

Why is the most willing helper the one who hasn't learned to do anything properly yet? "Mom, I can bacavuming?" So I let her vacuum, and then one of us goes back over it. No biggie.

Why am I the most tired on a day when I have to get the most done?

Why does Big Daddy always have to work late on Life Group day (which is also payday and banking day), so that he runs in the house just as the meeting starts, takes a shower and joins us? But can't do anything to help get ready?

Well. I am actually in a really good frame of mind, and so far still smiling. Just needed to whine a little is all.

Have a great Friday night!