Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Tag...You're IT!

So, first, I need to make a correction. This is the website link I meant to post for the most up-to-date Redbox codes. I rented a free one yesterday and another today. But, pay close attention when you're checking out because, if what I thought I saw was correct, it seems that it tells you a time that you need to return it by to not be charged. So, pay close attention before you scan your card in.

Second, the lovely newlywed, Nobby, has tagged all her friends with a meme about our significant others. So, here goes...

1.How long have you been together? In April, it will be 9 years since we met. In August, it will be 9 years we've been married. And we worked hard for every single year.

2.How long did you date? We only dated for 4 months before we got married. Not something I would recommend for everyone.

3.How old is he? He's 31.

4.Who eats more? Definitely him. Even with my growing appetite and eating for two, he's a bigger eater than I will ever be. But you don't get to be a big, strong (handsome) guy eating only salads.

5.Who said I Love You First? Not sure. It was probably him though. I would have been afraid of scaring him off if I had said it first.

6.Who is taller? He is. He's 5'9'' and I'm 5'7''.

7.Who sings better? Neither of us sing great, but it would probably be him.

8.Who is smarter? It's kind of ying and yang. He's smarter, and I mean "knowledgeable", in certain areas and the same for me in others.

9.Who does the laundry? I'm the one that does most of it, but he'll definitely do a load or two when supplies are running short.

10. Who does the dishes? Whoever yields first. I've been getting better at doing them though. Tonight, he offered to do them for me since I had made dinner. He's such a thoughtful person at times.

11. Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? If you're facing the bed, he does. It just works out like that most nights. My mom always sleeps on the side farthest from the door. Her reasoning? So, if anyone were to break in, she would be the farthest from them when they come in the room. I poor dad.

12.Who pays the bills? He does, since he's the one on the computer most of the day anyway.

13.Who mows the lawn? He does. I'll weed and water, but he ends up mowing and trimming. He also end up sneezing his head off when he does. Poor thing.

14.Who cooks dinner? It's been pretty split lately. I don't like to cook, but I love good food. I'm a recipe-follower. Things can go seriously awry if I try to improvise or be inventive in the kitchen. So, if I'm beyond tired or frazzled, he'll throw something together that is usually pretty decent.

15.Who is more stubborn? That would be me. Runs in the family, raised that way, trying to overcome it. I am sooo much better than when we first got married.

16.Who kissed who first? I kissed him after our first date. I know, I'm such a hussy. But, he said that it was the softest, most perfect kiss he'd ever had. That'll make a girl feel good.

17.Who asked who out? He asked me out after he got my phone number from the church missionaries. We went to a dance in a nearby village and ended up taking Mister with us on the date. We also had ice cream and had a lot of fun.

18.Who proposed? We sort of both did. I kinda casually asked him while we were up late studying my Spanish and he said yes. Then, later, he asked me after we were leaving a party and walking outside under the starry sky.

19.Who is more sensitive? Depends on the situation. Some things bother me more easily and he doesn't even know I'm bothered. But he's more sensitive when it comes to talking about problems. Sometimes I'm like the boorish husband who'd rather sleep it off than stay up and talk.

20. Who has more friends? I'd say it's about even.

21.Who has more siblings? Definitely him. He's the youngest of 10. I only have 4 siblings.

I now tag all of you! Have fun.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Sharing Time

I am pooped. I am really tired with a good "I accomplished a ton" feeling. I managed to do a couple loads of laundry, cleaned the kitchen and did the dishes (no small feat), picked up the kids, went to the grocery store, made two dinners and desserts, delivered the meal to our friends from church, and served up dinner. I am tired. And I feel good.

I found this website that lets you know what Redbox codes you can use for a free rental, and where the codes work. So, I tried it today and it did. Now, if I can remember to always return them, we'll be doing good. Oh, by the way, I was taught to share, so here's the website.

I haven't coughed up a lung yet.

'Ello, luvs. Except for a lingering cough, I am back to being fully functional. I only get sick about once a year, but it's usually a doozy. And I have to say that this one really hung on. The kids are still doing great, back to their hyperactive, playful ways. And H never suffered a single symptom.

Being holed up in the house for some time now, we decided to go out for family night last night. A friend from church is the chef at a pizza place on the west side Lofte's, and H had brought home some of his pizza the other night. Well, it was the best pizza I've ever had and I've been craving it since. So, we paid him a visit and enjoyed some italiano pizza, lasagna, garlic bread and a pitcher of root beer. It was so delectable. (What a funny word.) I ate more than my share and my tummy was pleased for the rest of the night. After dinner, we went to the store to pick up a bday present.

Tiny has a best friend, Romy, that she has been joined to the hip with since school started this year. She has been talking nonstop about Romy having a bday party and the much-awaited invitation finally arrived yesterday. The party is going to be at a family fun center with cake to follow at their house. We chose a bracelet-making kit for Tiny to give Romy. These two are completely adorable and inseparable. I'm always finding notes in her backpack with pictures they've drawn for each other and notes about their being "best friends forever". I'm glad she's found a kindred spirit.

After the gift-buying, we headed across the shopping center to the dollar theater and watched "Enchanted". The kids have been wanting to see this for a while and they really enjoyed it, as did H. I also found it to be fun and light. There were some parts of the movie that dragged on a bit, but it was a cute movie overall. After tucking the kids into bed, I was feeling euphoric from the excellent food and good fun. So, I got changed and curled up in bed with Tiny and drifted off to sleep easily.

The only bad part of yesterday was that a couple from church asked H to come over to offer support because they had lost a family member. It was a pretty tough blow to this couple because this is the second death in their family in the last month. I'm planning on dropping off some dinner to them tonight and trying to set up for some more friends to bring over dinners. Sometimes life will throw out a sad reminder that it is too short and often very unexpected. I'm just praying for them and hoping we can help them in some way.

Family updates: My uncle has started his chemo and is doing well. He does his chemo on Mondays and Tuesdays and my mom and aunt make sure they have dinner set up for them on those days. There is nothing like family when life gets tough. I really miss being nearer to them. H would have no problem moving back to NM and I know that the kids would love being near their cousins. But my problem is with the town. The schools are not very good, the jobs are really limited and the nearest large university is an hour away. The town feels confining to me. Its only redeeming quality is the beautiful desert and my family.

So, life is carrying on. I am trying to do more around the house. I've really let my homemaking duties slip and it's reflecting quite badly on me and our home. I've never been the ideal housewife, but I used to be a lot better at taking care of things. With the new little one coming, I need to bring my A-game if I want to stay sane and capable of maintaining my job around here. That may sound "Holly Homemaker" archaic to some, but when I'm able to keep my house in order and provide my family with a comfortable home, clean clothes and good food...well, not much beats that feeling. I'm hoping to work harder at my most important role.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

There are many varying levels of "sick".

So, nose, better. Cough, better. Throat, better. Ready for housework? No way.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Belly Button Bottom

Just a health update. My nose has been blown so many times I feel like it's been through a cheese grater. I've been hacking and coughing enough to lose my voice and for it to feel like my chest is being hammered each time I cough. Oh yeah, and my lips and nose are insanely chapped and red.

After H took the kids to school, I eased into a hot bath with a cup of warm peppermint tea. It helped for a while. The funny thing was that, during the bath, I found out that I can now see the bottom of my belly button. Hee hee.

I'm hoping the next time I post, things will be better.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Well, it's finally happened. After taking care of both kids this week, I'm sick. I knew by yesterday afternoon that it was too late. So, I asked someone to cover my Sunday school lesson for me and now I'm sitting here with a stuffy head, a runny nose, and a cough. Fun. It's pretty rare for us to get sick. It usually only happens about once a year. But I realized yesterday that it seems that the only times I get sick, the kids were sick first. So, that is the reward I get for taking care of them. It comes with the territory, I guess. So, if you don't hear from me, it's because I'll still be here, dripping and coughing.

Friday, February 15, 2008

It's the Little Things

*Foreword: Hobby, no worries. This is not a post about your V-day. It is about a compilation of cruddy attitudes I have seen online from some women I know that put waaaay too much emphasis on this one day.

Valentine's Day is such an anomaly to me. I can understand it when it is viewed as a special day to maybe express your love in a way that is a little above the everyday norm. However, I am surprised, and I'm not sure why, when I read and hear about some people being outright upset and disappointed when fireworks don't explode in the sky, a dozen roses aren't filling their shelves or, even, someone isn't calling you every minute they have free to express their love. It's like we feel entitled to every bit of this and more.

Well, I know that it's different for every couple how they choose to spend the day. But, I must say that, in a lot of cases, this expectation will only lead to disappointment and hurt feelings. Such high expectations leaves no room to remember or realize that the expected giver may be having a crappy day/week/month and that they might not realize the importance you've placed on this day. It doesn't let you remember that it's not the one day of abundant gift-giving that measures your love. No, it's the everyday actions and thoughts they give to you. It's when they snow-blow your driveway in the freezing cold so you can back out your car (loved those pics Hobby). It's when they make dinner and clean the house and pick up the kids from school when you are bedridden with the flu or just a migraine. It's when they will kill a spider or throw away an effective mousetrap when there is no way on God's earth that you will touch, or even look, at it. And especially when you're being the biggest pain in the butt in the world and they will still tell you that you're really pretty, with a goofy smile on his face and a boyish look in his eye.
Yes, THAT is what it's about. And do you know why it's better than all the roses and boxed candy on February 14th? Because it happens more than once a year, and on a regular basis.
Also, another perk of not having high expectations is that when he does bring home a little bouquet of bright daisies and your favorite cookies, the surprise and appreciation is much greater.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Update and Good Reads

Just a quick update again. Mister is home again from school. He can't seem to shake off what he's got. His fever broke a couple days ago, but now he's complaining of nausea and dizziness. So, he's resting on the couch and taking it easy. We did, however, manage to finish his science project yesterday. I'll have to take pictures of it when he brings it home. His experiment was to see if the design of a catapult affected its performance. So, we made three catapults from different designs. It was really fun and the best catapult was made from a mouse trap. That thing launched excellent. One catapult was made from popsicle sticks and rubber bands and the other from a clothes pin. The clothes pin one performed the worst. But it was easy and fun to make. Pics to come soon.

Tiny still has a bit of a cough, but she's doing much better and is at school. Hopefully, she'll stay all day. I know she's missed her best friend. I also have a parent-teacher meeting with her teacher today.

Yesterday, I went for my OB check up. It was supposed to be on Monday, but the doc got called to deliver a baby. Anyway, things are looking good. All my bloodwork came back good. I gained another 4 lbs. but still can stay out of maternity clothes. Not bad for my third pregnancy. I heard the little one's heart beat, strong and fast. Talked to the doc about some concerns and questions and decided we would do another ultrasound next month. Hopefully we'll be able to find out what we're having. H and Tiny are definitely going to be there for that. Mister is still deciding, but seemed more interested when I mentioned that he would get out of school for a little while for it if he went. So, in four weeks, we'll know if we'll be using the girl name or boy name we've chosen. And I will also be checking out colors for the nursery. I'm pretty sure that my shower will follow soon after since Nobby said the sex of the baby would determine the shower theme. I can't wait.

I just finished reading a fun, lighthearted book titled "Multiple Choice" by Claire Cook. It was a quick read that had likeable characters and an uncomplicated story. The main character, March Monroe, just sent her daughter off to college and with her son in his teenage years, she decides to return to college. She is required to participate in an internship and chooses to work at a radio station. However, her daughter, who doesn't know her mom returned to school, already interns at the same radio station. There is instant tension between them that results in March realizing a few things about her daughter and also in a successful radio show. It was a nice read that went quickly.
I am also veeery sloooowly reading "The Life of Pi" by Yann Martel. It is about a boy named Pi from India that is filled with questions about religion and his faith. After a shipwreck, he ends up in a lifeboat with a group of zoo animals, including a 450-lb. Bengal tiger. Each day, with their animal companions dwindling with the tiger's appetite, Pi must rely on all his knowledge and faith to survive another 227 days. Martel's writing is so rich in detail that it keeps your attention without overwhelming you. And if all that doesn't attract your interest, the book was based on a true story. Can't beat that.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Science, Movies, and Baby

Mister, Tiny, and I are staying home today from church. Tiny has had a fever most of the weekend and Mister seems to have just a touch of it. It's a good thing I didn't have to teach a class today. I'm not sure if Tiny will be going to school tomorrow either. I'm trying hard to not get sick too. There's not much you can take for a cold when pregnant.

This weekend has not seen much accomplished. Mister's science project is due tomorrow and he hasn't really started it. He seems to pick complicated experiments sometimes. This year, he wanted to find out if the design of a catapult will affect its performance. I found a few websites to make miniature catapults. There is not nearly as many as you would think. So, we will probably trying to figure out how to make them before tomorrow or Mister may need to switch experiment ideas.

I have been introducing the kids to some film classics. No, I'm not talking about "Casablanca" or "Ben Hur". No, think more along the lines of the original "Star Wars" series (remember the Ewoks?). They have also watched Spaceballs (I know, Mother of the Year, right?), Rocky I through III, and Better Off Dead. These are movies I watched when I was young and some that I had forgotten about. They seem to appreciate them too.

Family update: My sister is still waiting to hear from the doctor about her mammogram...from two weeks ago. Way to keep someone waiting and worrying. She also had a sonogram done and it pretty much only confirmed that she had the lump. They still haven't done a biopsy. These people sure are sharp and on task. My uncle had an enlarged tonsil removed and they discovered that it had a tumor. They will start chemo on Monday and will also do radiation for the lump on his neck. He is in good spirits and is ready to get started. My aunt (his sister) will be moving in with him and my grandma to take care of them. The doctor actually told my uncle on Friday that they wanted him to gain 10 lbs. by Monday. Like I said, sharp. But life is carrying on and, simultaneously, holding its breath. Prayers are always welcome.

H is not having the best of luck on the real estate front and prayer there would also be appreciated. He has decided to continue his education and get his MBA from Excelsior College. He received his Bachelors from them previously. He seems excited about it. Thankfully, the GI Bill will still cover his continuing education. I regularly long to be back in school. I look at the grad school class descriptions and wish I was in them, discussing early British Lit. and Lit. Theory (amazingly enough). I know it will be a while before I go back, but I'm happy knowing that I will go back.

I go to my next OB appointment tomorrow morning. They have a sonogram machine in their office and I wonder if they will do another one. I'm pretty sure they won't be able to tell me the sex for another month, but it's really awesome to see the little one on the screen, moving around and growing big. Some days, I already feel huge and some days, I still look little. I'm not in a rush to get through this. I'm enjoying right now. And I know I still have a lot to look forward to; finding out the sex, readying the nursery, having my baby shower, and having my parents visit around my due date. So much fun to come.

I think we're pretty set on the names we've picked. H still throws out one or two, but I'm too happy with the ones already picked. Wanna know them? Some of you already know. If we have a boy, he will be Matthew Jerry. 'Jerry' comes from my father-in-law's first name. 'Matthew' is a name that H has liked for some time. Also, a few years ago, I had a dream that someone asked me how many kids I had and I answered, "Three. Robert, Holly, and Matthew." I had this dream, not remembering that H had liked this name. Considering I had a dream when we were dating that we had Mister and a baby girl, I put some stock in my more impressionable dreams.

Now, if it's a girl, she will be Catherine Cochell. 'Catherine' is a name I love. It is old-fashioned and very versatile; Cat, Cate, Cathy. She'll have many choices to pick from. 'Cochell' is my mother-in-law's maiden name. I thought it matched well with Catherine and sounded really beautiful and different. So, there they are. I like both names so much that if we have a boy, we'll save the name for the girl for the next one, or vice versa.

My mom has told me that she dreamed that I had a little girl with fair skin (like her daddy) and dark hair (like her mommy), and she was beautiful. My sis-in-law has had two dreams that I'm buying girl clothes. Tiny and I both still feel it might be a boy. I told H that it speaks volumes of Mister as a brother if Tiny wants another one. They are great together and I know they will do well with the new one.

Well, for not having much to say, I've written quite a lot. Hope you're all doing well and enjoying your weekends, cold-free and relaxing.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Nope, It's not twins.

I couldn't wait another two weeks to take a new belly pic. I knew that I have grown enough in the last two weeks to warrant another pic. So, here it is:
But what is an "after" pic without a "before"? So, here are the last and the new, side by side.

Two weeks, people! Only two weeks between these pics. If I hadn't seen only one baby on the sonogram, I would swear we were having two.

My Team Won!

That's what I said to my mom when I called her after the Superbowl last night. She said, "So did mine!" Hee hee. I didn't really have a team picked before the game started, but I knew that the Giants were the underdogs. I like to root for the underdogs because I think it makes it that much more exciting and it's awesome if they win. And when I realized that this was Eli Manning's rookie year, well, that just made me root harder. And...THEY WON! I thought it was all over when the Patriots scored in the last 3 minutes. I even scolded the tv and unleashed my disappointment at Henry. But something magical must have happened between their touchdown and when I came back from the kitchen with a plateful of brownies to console myself. I knew the Giants wanted it more. They just had to figure that out, and they did when that touchdown splashed some reality in their faces. You could hear my scream for joy when they Manning passed for that touchdown. It was an awesome game.

I used to only watch the game for the commercials, but my focus definitely changed when I was actually cheering for a team. The commercials were pretty good this year too. Well, that's all I can do for now. I just got called to be an emergency sub, for 4th graders. Pray for me. :)

Saturday, February 02, 2008

One Can Hope

Did I ever tell you we own a Mercedes? Well, technically, the bank owns it, but unfortunately, this doesn't entitle them to pay for repairs and maintenance. Anyway, the only reason we could ever own a Mercedes is because it was about the same price as any other car. We also have a Nissan Pathfinder that was nicknamed "The Mountain Goat". The Pathfinder is actually ours and has been a great truck. It has done what is expected and never really complained or given us problems. Until now.

Now, the Benz has given us trouble from the start. The first problem was either the window coming off track or the AC going out, one or the other. Well, the cost to fix just these two problems? Close to $4,000. That was when I began to realize why the price was surprisingly low when we bought it. And now, something is horribly wrong that has rendered it almost undriveable. While driving, the brake light and ABS light ding at me annoyingly and it seems that the acceleration sensor is rendered useless. It will not register your speed and stops telling the engine when to shift. It's in, what they call, "limp home mode". Doesn't sound good, does it? Well, it will cost $85 to have them assess the problem and I'm afraid to ask how much repairs would be. So, I'm crossing my fingers that they will find something that is DIY-able for us.

The Pathfinder has developed a new trick of jumping out of 1st gear and back into neutral on its own. Fun. So, we have to hold it in 1st until we can shift up. I'm also hoping this is something easy to fix. Heaven knows that transmissions cost more than the vehicle to fix and replace. But I'm really thankful for my very knowledgeable dad that can usually diagnose the problem pretty accurately. I only wish he lived a lot closer.

I told H that I think I have the same kind of troubleshooting skills that my dad does and that I think I may have a hidden mechanical talent in me, just like my dad. He didn't seem to agree as readily. But I have wanted for some time now to get a hold of an engine and just take that sucker apart to learn about it and better visualize each part's function. Maybe after that, I will be more able to diagnose our car problems. And maybe after that, I could dabble in rocket science literature and be hired by NASA as a top engineer. Right.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Not much new

I believe I will need to take a new belly pic again soon. I had planned to only take one a month, but my belly has grown so much in just the last two weeks that I think it warrants another pic. I had bought some larger jeans about two and half weeks ago since I was still too small for maternity clothes. When I bought the jeans, they had some leeway to them in the waist. Well, I now can't comfortably button them. But I'm enjoying it all. I just wish that the family could feel the baby's movements from the outside. I can still only feel them on the inside. After I have a glass of orange juice, the baby goes nuts in there. He/she jumps and wiggles around. It's so cool.

There's not much going on around here. Same old. We just had our fourth snow storm of about six that we are expecting. As much snow as we get every year, some are surprised that we never get snow days. We've been here for four years, and not one. A nearby ski resort town got a snow day this week and it was their first in 9 years. Yeah, if a resort town only gets one snow day every 9 years, it'll be a while before we get one. It's a good thing that I'm finally used to the winters here.

Well, I leave it at that for now. Will post more later.