Wednesday, June 27, 2007

3 a.m. and I need a nap

When I graduated, I knew that I would carry on many things that I learned and experienced through my college years. However, I never thought that all-nighters would be one of them. Lately, each night, I am up until 3 am and then end up sleeping in until about 10:30 am. I remember having a difficult time during school staying up past 11 pm to just read 2 chapters of theory. And now that I no longer have deadlines pressing on me, I am up all hours. Maybe I should pretend that I have a paper and a midterm due tomorrow plus 5 chapters of reading. Or I should just pull out my theory text book and I'd surely pass out after the first few lines.

Well, despite my weird hours, I am still managing to accomplish a few things. The kids actually made it to gymnastics today. They've missed the last three classes (my fault). I also took them to a children's concert at the library. (I'm angling for Mother of the Year.) ;) It's a weird feeling when you realize that your kids are focusing more on the beat and the instruments because the lyrics are a little childish for them. Wow. When did they get permission to grow up? They seemed to enjoy it though. They are also letting me know loud and clear that they are incredibly B-O-R-E-D being at home for the summer and miss school. (Yeah, I know, how many more years will I be hearing that? Not many.) So, I'm going to see about getting them into some lessons they've been asking about. For both of them, I could arrange swimming lessons and they are both interested in piano. Another possibility was getting them involved in childrens' theater. I'll have to look into these and sign them up.

Around the house, I've been mostly lazy. But I did kick a little butt on it yesterday. I cleaned out the washroom and had H rearrange the washer to make a little more room in there. Cleaning that out was no picnic because we had had a mouse visitor not long ago and he left a LOT of disgusting little pellets behind the washer. We managed to evict him a long time ago and these were all that remained. It was still an unpleasant task. I also got H to unclog the shower drain after I found the drano. After he did that, I re-caulked a seam in the shower stall. Project-wise, I painted two cabinet doors in the kitchen with the chalk paint. I figured that that would be easier than trying to find something to paint and hang on the wall. I would love to post a pic of it for you, but we seem to have misplaced the camera. So, keep an eye out for future pics, and rejoice for our finding the camera.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Griswold's Vegas Vacation, Family Reunion, and a Visit to the Great State of Self-Awareness

I'm still hanging in there. I might only be babysitting one more day. I really like the girls, but they are a lot more energy and attention-necessary than I'm used to. My house is also not used to it. So, cross your fingers that their mom will be able to get them into the daycare she wants. If that goes through, I will begin painting Mister's room soon. Fun news: We'll be going to Las Vegas soon. H is going to attend a real estate seminar there and we're tagging along for vacation. I've booked our hotel and have been checking out activities for us and the kids. I've only been to Vegas once, and that was pretty much just passing through. We only walked around for about an hour on the strip in the middle of the night on a weekday. Not terribly eventful. So, we're all looking forward to the trip. Sometime afterwards, we will also be traveling one state over for a family reunion (H's side). I'm looking forward to being able to float the local river for a couple hours with the family. Nothing better in the summer than that, followed by pizza at our fav place there.

I've been thinking a lot about what I'm going to do, work-wise. I don't want to go into the program early this fall if I'm not sure that I want to teach yet. I want to teach, in theory. But I haven't had enough classroom experience to decide definitively on my future yet. I am considering going into real estate. Real estate is something I enjoy, and it definitely has earning potential. One other career that I heard of was that of a book reviewer. I came across a blog once and the author was a book reviewer for Barnes and Noble. When I read this, my first thought was that that had to be the best job in the world. You read a ton of books and write about them. I love both ends of that. Unfortunately, I couldn't find that blog again. However, I have come across a few websites that give great advice on how to jumpstart this kind of career and get you where you want to be with it (eg. working for a publishing house full-time). So, those are some options. I really like working alone most of the time, and both of those could fit that bill in many ways.

I figure, it's my future, it's my life, and I want to do something I'm going to enjoy...and right now, I don't think I enjoy a classroom full of attitude-ridden, mouthy teenagers. There are a few things in my life that I have been able to figure out about myself. One, is that I know that I would not make a great mother to a large number of children. I have decided that 2-3 will be what I can handle best, and I already have 2 perfectly wonderful kids. Two, I have MANY interests (result of the ADD???) and I will likely have more than one career in life. Three, I am what I like to call sweet and sour. The majority of me is the sweet; caring, concerned, willing to help, compassionate, loving, outgoing, funny, and happy. However, I, like many others, also am haunted by a sour side. I have days of gloom and lack of energy. On these days, I'd rather not cook, clean, or even leave the house if at all possible. I am also stubborn, a bit cranky, and negative-thinking on these days. Thankfully, this is the minority side and has become fewer and far between over the years.

These are all things that took me at least 25 years of life to figure out about myself and I still have to remind myself of this knowledge sometimes. It's like I'm actually slowly getting to know myself. Does everyone do this??? Sometimes, I would feel bad because I thought I should try to make myself more like the person that can have 8 kids and do well with it, could pick one career and stick with it for life, or that can't just suck it up on a bad day and move on with a smile and an abundance of energy cause it would all just be in my head. But after a lot of arguing with myself over how I should feel and how I actually felt about each of these, I realized that it was my life, my choices, and I should do what works best for me, not what I think everyone expects of me. Afterwards, I also realized that the more I understand myself, accept my limitations, and reach forward in my abilities,...the more I like myself. I'm, of course, still a work in progress...but I like that, and I'm looking forward to getting better acquainted with myself.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

The Men in My Life

What can I say about the men in my life? First, my husband...

He is the best. When I met him, I knew I would never find another man as good as him...and I still haven't. He stepped up to the plate when our marriage included not just adding me into his life, but also becoming an instant father. And that's what he is, Mister's father. I have to remind myself sometimes that they are not biologically connected, but, in my mind, they are. Mister loves him like no other. H is the perfect person for Mister. H is kind, patient, and very loving. Mister took to him quickly and is still by his side. And then Tiny came along. I knew that she would be her daddy's little girl, and she is. I remember her face lighting up with a smile when H would come home after work. He was the only one she wanted to see and jabber with after he got home. Both of them still smile big with a hello when he comes in. As a father, H has not only stepped up to the plate, he's knocking them out of the field. He is a man of God, a good man, and a loving husband and father. I love you, H.

And now, my dad...

I've been told that I was his little sidekick when I was toddling around. He was the first person I would see in the morning after he got off the night shift, and I would follow him around the house while he made breakfast. He told me that he's the one I walked to when I took my first steps. And he's still the one I go to with many things. He taught me to drive, to tell a joke, and to keep working hard. I saw him work through two jobs and go to school full-time to better our lives. This inspired me to keep going in school too. He knows everything about cars. He can fix anything around the house. He is always smiling. He loves God and his family. He is perfect in my eyes. I love you, Dad.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Still Alive

I've not posted much lately because I am helping out a friend and babysitting her two girls most of the day. One is 3 1/2 and the other is 1 1/2. I'm definitely a bit out of practice with little ones. They are good girls though, and full of energy. Will try to post more. Hope you are all well in the blogging world.

Monday, June 11, 2007

CTRL+ALT+DEL...hit with hammer.

I have had some complaints that my page was being a pain when it was loading. So, I redid my template to see if that would help. Let me know if it is loading better. Thanks.

If the cans or the oreos fall off the car, can you get fined for littering???

This weekend was a busy one. On Friday night, me and the LonDolls went to the Groom's dinner for Nobby and her fiancee. It was a lovely dinner with about 100 people including family and a few friends. They had a video with pictures and video of the bride and groom from birth to present day. They are an incredibly cute couple. She is a gorgeous woman that radiates beauty inside and out. When she is talking to you, she makes you feel like there is not another soul in the world she would rather be with. Her smile and words make you feel loved and important. Her fiancee is the perfect compliment to her. He is also kind and just adores her. There were some great toasts made to the couple. Of course, us girls couldn't go without saying a few words about our wonderful Nobby. Our toast was basically what I just said above. We ate too much, took some pics, and said our farewells for the night.

On the way home, we dropped by our new IKEA. I have heard so much about this store and have not been in it. Unfortunately, we got there about 20 minutes before closing time and did not get to browse as much as we wanted. But we did see most of the store since they have it setup in a way that you have no choice but to walk through the whole store before exiting. I loved it though and will definitely head back there with more time to browse. After dropping off Mody, I headed for the dollar theater where H and the kids were watching "Are We Done Yet?". It was a cute movie, but definitely geared toward the younger audience. We then headed home and fell fast asleep.

Saturday morning, H and I, the kids, and Mody headed downtown. Nobby and her fiancee were getting married at the temple and H and I were lucky enough to be one of the few invited in for the ceremony (space is limited). Mody watched the kids for us while we attended. It was a beautiful and God-filled ceremony. It was heartwarming to see the two of them holding hands and promising forever. My eyes were leaking for the whole last half of the ceremony. Afterwards, we congratulated them and Nobby and I embraced with tears in our eyes and saying our 'I love you''s. She is a good person, and he is too. He makes her happy and I know they will do well. The reception wasn't until that night, so we took Hobby out for a birthday lunch at the pub. Mody, of course, joined us. Hobby turned 21 and joked that she was now legal to buy alcohol...not to drink, to cook with. She is a chef, after all. She's funny. The reception was in a town south of us, so we left early and were able to find it after some confusion. The reception was short, but sweet. They did all the traditional stuff: greeting line, cutting the cake, first dance (during which her grandpa stole away the bride at the end), father/daughter and mother/son dance, the tossing of the bouquet, and the send off in a car with cans trailing behind and oreos plastered to the windows (I don't know). She was happy, tearful, and, I'm sure, eager to start their married life. They are off on a cruise now and I'm sure they are enjoying every minute. I wish them the best.

Sunday, today, we were lucky enough to make a new friend at church. She just moved into town and we invited her over for dinner and also for Tiny's bday party tomorrow. She has two little girls that are really cute. We had a nice visit and I look forward to seeing more of her and her girls.

Well, it's 2:36 am and I have to get up early to buy the cake-making stuff, clean off the back porch, straighten up the house, decorate, and order pizzas for all the kids that will be tearing up my home in celebration of Tiny's 7th year tomorrow. 7 years already and she's still my baby in my eyes. Goodnight and God bless.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Tiny's room 2.0

I'll let the pics speak for themselves. It was hard work, but I enjoyed it all.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Paint is a Wonderful Thing

The last couple of days have been pretty busy. Yesterday, I worked on Tiny's room some more and had gotten the chalkboard paint done. They have to wait a couple of days to draw on it. Last night, Hobby invited us to go up to the ski lodge to swim and hot tub. Well, we went even though it was snowing in the mountains...yes, it is June here too. The pools are kept warm for year round swimming up at the lodges. When we arrived, we tried to just stay in the indoor hot tub but were told that the kids weren't allowed in there. They had a family pool. However, it was outside. Picture us looking outside, there is about 5 inches of snow on the ground, it's still coming down, and the wind is blowing. I was not thrilled with the idea of going outside, in the cold, already wet with nothing but a bathing suit and a towel on. I was especially concerned with the kids. But we decided that it was worth a try, so we ran down the path as fast as we could, barefoot and screaming from the cold snow under our feet. As soon as we got through the gate, we jumped into the warm pool. It felt really good. And the wind wasn't blowing as hard where the pool was. It was awesome. How often does anyone get to go swimming in the snow in June?! I just wish we could have taken a picture of us with snow in our hair and swimming in the warm water. The kids had a blast swimming and having snowball fights at the same time. After our dip, we changed and headed back down the mountain for dinner. We went to a great bbq roadhouse (I told you I love bbq) and they had the most awesome sweet rolls and tender ribs. Yum!!! After dinner, we said our goodbyes and thanks to Hobby for a great time.

Today, I finished, yes, finished the painting in Tiny's room. I even put up most of her stickers and some border. I need to buy two more borders to go around the room, but it's looking really good. Here are some pics of the progress...

I'll post more pics of the room when I get the rest of the border up and put the furniture back in order. All of this has been a lot of work, but I have really enjoyed it. This weekend, I wil be focusing on prepping the house and everything for Tiny's bday party on Monday. After that is all settled down, I will start Mister's room. Here is the color that I will be painting his room with white trim. He also picked out this border and stickers for his room. I will, of course, be posting the before and afters of his room as well.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

$8 For a Clean Room...What a Deal!

I think most of my posts will be after 2 am from now on. Anyways, I made a lot of progress on Tiny's room today. I finished the green (top half), around the trim, and did a first coat of the chalkboard paint. I need to put another coat or two of the chalkboard paint, touch up the trim with primer where the other paint overlapped, then put a coat of white on the door and trim. After that, it's just the border and stickers that need to be put up. My back was also acting up today and made it a bit uncomfortable to work. But it bothered me more to sit still, so I pressed on. Pics to come soon.

Tonight, we attended the graduation of H's boss' daughter from high school. Afterwards, we all congregated at Applebee's and enjoyed some chat, laughs, and food. It was fun and she is a good kid. She is going to look into Set Design (interior design for tv and movies) at an art school next. I think she'll do well.

I will be painting Mister's room after Tiny's and it will be blue with white trim. He also picked a border and stickers of Pirates of the Caribbean to put up. It should be considerably easier than Tiny's room. The other day, Mister started dropping hints in a very un-subtle manner that he wanted to get the Lego Racers comp game. I told him that I would look it up online if his room got small task. He has never managed to clean the whole room on his own. So, he disappeared into his room for almost three hours. I figured he gave up and was playing his other Lego game. Nope, he came out and proclaimed it clean. I inspected and couldn't believe the great job he did. Of course, the toys had been haphazardly placed in their bins and in the closet. But I have to say that, even with that, it was a great deal cleaner than I expected. I was impressed and, true to my word, I looked up the game, found it on sale on Amazon, and ordered it for him. If a $4 game + $4 shipping and handling will get him to clean his room that well, it is worth it. Hey, I'm not above the occasional bribe. I also don't mind being the recipient of one sometimes.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Pics to entertain the brain

Some habits are hard to shake, like staying up late even when I am no longer in school and cramming for a test or writing a last minute paper. I rarely get to bed before midnight. Tonight was Family Night at our local natural history museum. We browsed through the usual exhibits and watched a demonstration of physics. The kids really enjoyed the demonstrations, and I have to say that I did too. We then ate way too much pizza and headed home.
I mentioned previously my plans to paint the kids' rooms. Well, I thought I would let you see some of my progress. I am working on Tiny's room and the theme is Tinkerbell. Below is some before and in-progress pics.

This is the before pics with white walls, black window trim, and gray floor trim. Her bedding was the inspiration for the Tinkerbell room decor.

Yes, that is bright green and purple. Now picture a Tink border between the two colors, and assorted decor stickers around the room. I was pretty pleased with how the white trim came out. It shows off the detail of the trim really well, which I love in old houses. I should be finishing up her room in the next couple of days and will post the finished pics.

In other news, I was sent pics of my trip by my betrothed buddy. I really loved visiting her and really wish I could make it back east to attend her wedding. Never know, it just might happen.

Left, it's me and her. Someone actually thought we were sisters while we were hanging out. Don't we look like sisters?...besides the hair, eyes, and coloring...other than that... On the right, the view from her future in-law's house. Gorgeous. And you should have seen the red cliffs to the right of this.

Friday, June 01, 2007

On the road again...

I am here, I am well. I just came back from a little two day trip to the southern part of the state. I was there to visit a good friend that lives in a more eastern state of the US. She was down here to meet her future in-laws. I haven't seen her in about 3 years and I loved visiting with her. We stayed up late chatting and laughing and catching up. We have known each other for about 8 years. We met when our husbands (her now ex) both worked in the same shop in the military. The first time we met was when H and I went to their house for dinner when we were still dating. It took a little while before we actually started hanging out regularly, but after that, we were inseparable. H is very fond of her as well. She is a strong, smart, beautiful woman. After her first marriage ended, she continued going to school and taking care of her two kids. She then moved back east and started teaching, on top of school and taking care of the kids. She will finish her masters in education this spring, she bought a house, is teaching 7th and 8th grade resource kids (big handful), and her kids are doing well. And she has now met a really nice guy that just seems to adore well he should. I'm so happy for her.

So, I went down there Tuesday and came back yesterday. The fiancee's family was really nice and I had a lot of fun just hanging out and doing not much. I love that girl and hope she find her happiness with him. It was also nice to just get away for a bit too. Believe it or not, that was the first long distance drive I have ever taken alone. I mentioned this to H and he asked if I would prefer to have someone with me. I told him no, and that I just thought it was weird that I was 27 and had never really driven alone anywhere. I know, London counts as traveling alone, but I was on a plane, not driving. I love road trips, H hates driving. Hopefully, we'll have more opportunity to travel around. I suggested a summer trip through Idaho to see some of his fam, and then on to Portland, where he has been and loves and I have never been but want to see. He suggested we then go down to Cali to visit even more of his fam. Don't think I would mind. Just have to find the time and the means. Other trips on our minds are KY to IN to NY to ME. Who knows when that will happen though.