Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Leave My Straw Alone!

Does anyone have a straw biter? I have several, and one in particular. I also have a brand new water bottle with teeth marks after letting said straw annihilator share on the way home from bible study since there wasn't a water bottle in the car for her. I also hate chewed stuff, especially my previously smooth and unblemished straw that's attached to the bottle. This is why I don't like to share. There should be rules that Mama doesn't have to follow.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Miss Skinny Pants

So you've got above average height children who are way below average weight and a husband who is very particular about pant length. What do you do? You realize how amazing and versatile grosgrain ribbon is.

What's Up?

the front

how it should sit

the whole thing that
my wonderful neighbour
Kim modeled for me.

the back with pocket

Well, ClaireBeth went to her first non-family sleep over. Vee started counting down on me. Zoe's decided she wants to be a trumpet playing skater, Eric bought his birthday present seven weeks early and I can't find ANYTHING in this house.

ClaireBeth went to a birthday party for a friend from church. Riah turned six and has a really fun mom and two really fun older sisters. So we dropped her off (ran Ziggy back in to use the potty) and left our baby at someone else's house. It felt a little odd to me, but I survived. Then Eric missed the exit. He turned around and there was no on-ramp for 94 W, so we went to the next exit, same thing. Thankfully it was Market and we were able to take it all the way down, and thankfully we'd been to enough games at Petco that we knew how to get home from there. Except Eric got on the wrong freeway because no one from work will leave him alone. He's got two people under him who are learning a lot and can answer most questions. Just no one ever calls them. So we ended up by church! Eventually we got home, but it was hilarious to see Eric do this stuff because it's what I always do. I went to pick her up this morning and she's got blue and pink nail polish with jewels and glitter makeup everywhere! I meant to take a picture. For parties right now it's okay, but my poor mother-in-law thinks I'm nuts because I didn't want the girls to have make-up when we went to her house. We compromised. The girls got the lip gloss and the other stuff went to a niece. We also only do pale pink or clear nail polish (I have horrible memories of me with green and black and blue nail polish), so this was a real treat for ClaireBeth.
We take Eric dinner when he has duty. Every so often we're there to hear the music signaling that it's time to take down the flag. Ziggy heard it and wanted to know if it was a trumpet. Sure, trumpet bugle, same principle. So she decided that she wanted me to buy her a trumpet right then and there. She got mad that we didn't go to the store and buy her one. Add this to her wanting to be a skater girl (I even showed her girls skateboarding on YouTube, which she thought was really cool), she's going to be the most well-rounded or the most ostracized teenager who actually does activities ever.

Then there's Vee. We count backwards from three instead of forwards. It just seems more defined. So I told Vee "Three". To which she promptly responds "Two". So now she's trying to get me in trouble and she can only count backwards. Great. Well the backwards thing I can blame on the microwave at least.

On to Eric. Mr iPod. That was his birthday gift this year. I was going to get him a Wii sports pack with the ping-pong paddle and pool cue and all that and the Play game that uses all that stuff, but he decided this is what he wanted. Oh well, at least I don't have to wrap anything.

Then on to me. I finally finished a nursing cover. I have three more slings to make and I still haven't made the diaper bag or recovered my chair. But the nursing cover came out well. It's bigger than the two "commercial" ones I've seen, but they seem skimpy, so it's okay. I did it in Winnie the Pooh (not my pick) and it is rather cute. But before I got it done, I had to search for the ribbon. While I was looking for the ribbon I lost the boning (for the sophomoric type, that's the plastic piece that gives the neck it's shape). Then I almost went nuts trying to sew it. But it's finished. Whew! On to my next project.

Friday, September 26, 2008

I was wrong

Now I feel awful again. Why can't colds just come in, work and leave, why do they have to linger and make you think you're getting better?


I feel a good bit better. Thanks for the prayers from those who did. No thanks to the internet woman. For some reason, whenever I get sick I end up having to clean the house because something breaks. So yesterday it was for AT&T. But the downstairs is clean-minus the bathroom and laundry room, oh, and the coat closet. Ugh. Stupid shoes. Upstairs I still have laundry from at least a month ago that needs to be hung up and put away. My wonderful husband is one of those that will put it on the bed hoping I'll do something with it. When he goes to bed before I do (which is always) he puts it on the floor. I've cleaned around the pile at least three times, I just never cleaned up the pile. Then the bathrooms upstairs. What's with bathrooms. If I hired a maid, it would be to clean the bathrooms, scrub the kitchen floor and wash the walls (I can't stand dirty walls, which with three kids I have tons of). Oh well, at least soon all the girls will be able to help. Five years is soon, right?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Woe is me

I hate colds. They're really not that bad compared to other things, but how often do you get bird flu or dengue fever compared to a cold? ClaireBeth is over hers, Ziggy doesn't seem to have it and Vee had a runny nose but is now fine. So why do I get it so bad? My head hurts, I feel fuzzy (light-headed and dizzy), I'm all stuffed up and dripping, my teeth itch and my muscles ache. Why do the girls never get it like this? Probably because they eat and drink a lot healthier than I do and don't weigh more than they should. Ugh, I'm either going to get a vanilla coke and go back to bed or I'm just going back to bed. Either way it includes getting up from the computer and I don't think I have the energy.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Vocabulary of Vee

daydu-thank you
uma-come on
tay?-are you okay (usually after she hurts you somehow)
tupit-stop it
boble-buckle (meaning carseat, stroller or shopping cart)
There are more, I just can't get her to say them right now.

ClaireBeth still says aminal and Ziggy's just hilarious with how grown up she is already.

Daily Verse-Replaced, Revised and Driving Me Nuts!

'Kay, it's working now. Yea! And it gives a different verse every time. I've actually found a few I didn't know that are very useful today.

And now I'll have to change it again. The verse it gave out is "No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.", which is John 1:18. Luke 19:10 is "for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” A good verse, but still. It helps to have the reference match the verse. So I may be out of luck.

Now it's white. The blue one was too big and you had to scroll over. Way too much of a pain so no one would have read it, which rather defeats the purpose of having it here in the first place.

Okay, can anyone see the daily verse? All I see is computer talk. I don't know if it's 'cause it's my page or what. I had a poll that I took off simply because it was all computer junk. My friend has the daily verse on hers and I can read it. So let me know in the comments if you can read it, whether or not you actually want to read it!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Miss Vee

So here's Miss Vee with her baby sling. This is the first time she's put it on, but already she's a pro. Eric made ClaireBeth and Ziggy one each last year (he sews better than I do) and as you can see Vee's already making off with their stuff. I can't wait until I have three teenage girls that all wear the same size in one house.

The simple things

So the house is destroyed, the girls are cranky and if I hear anymore crying I'm going to scream. But my cornbread came out very well. Eric's grandpa let me have the cast iron skillet since he had bought two for his daughter and she didn't want both. He picked them up at an auction. So I put it in my suitcase and it flew from Ohio to California. This is the first time I've used it. The bread was moist, the bottom nice and smooth and it came very easily out of the pan. I need to work on my recipe, but that's because my grandmother told me what she usually puts in hers and I've been playing around with it. She didn't even tell me a temperature or time! Thank goodness for the internet. For some reason my paper said shortening, so I put it in the batch for my friend to whom I took dinner. Apparently I need to cross that out. I made a batch without it and it came out a lot better. But I also didn't make hers in the cast iron because I didn't know how it would go. So sorry Sarah! I always look at that and try to remember if I'm supposed to put it in there. Now I know and hopefully I'll remember! I also always forget to use buttermilk instead of milk. I'll try to remember that.

But oh, the simple things in life. They're usually far better than the supposedly super-important or super-special. If indoor plumbing and air conditioning had been invented, I think it would have been nice to live a long time ago. To have what you do matter, a woman was allowed to be a woman without being told she should not nurse and she should work. Children were expected to do chores and people didn't look at you like you were the worst mother because your kids had work to do. Kids were politer because society hadn't embraced a "ME FIRST" attitude and passed it down the line. There was no road rage or traffic (we'll ignore the highway men-this is a list of good things back then). There was less junk in our lives so the house was easier to keep clean. There were also more people to help keep it that way because you could have more kids without worrying about over-population, college costs and cars being big enough. So here's to the old days. Maybe I'll try to convince Eric to move to the boonies and we can go back to pioneer times, with a few modifications, of course.

Friday, September 12, 2008

They're getting so big!

It's getting colder in the mornings, pretty much the whole time Ziggy's in school, so it's time to pull out the pants and long-sleeved shirts. The kind of clothing where length and fit actually matter. So what do Vee's pants do? Go up at least an inch abover her shoe. Ziggy still has 2T long-sleeved shirts because it's been that long since we've needed them. If I weed those out she has like three shirts left. So I pulled out the buckets; in the process I cleaned up all the clothes I've just been throwing in the garage and Eric's been yelling at me about. So Ziggy's in 4T/4 and Vee's getting into 18 months. Some things are still a little big, but it's one more baby step to growing up. The firsts of life are so fun, but the lasts of life are so sad.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

It finally happened!

Ziggy woke herself up to go potty!!! Hopefully it'll happen again.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Chef ClaireBeth-update

She's making macaroni and cheese for lunch for us today. I realized she was six and couldn't cook anything besides chicken nuggets. We'll see how it goes.

So it was pretty good. Actually it tasted better than usual, maybe because I didn't have to cook it. I was doing pot roasts and easy stuff like that when I was her age. I wonder what she's ready for next.

Yes ma'am

For some reason people have a problem with ma'am and sir. I don't get this. It's like in this world where disrespect is now the norm, any appropriate titles are considered rude. With men, if they say "I'm not my father, don't call me sir.", sometimes I'll ask if they like ma'am better, since sir was acknowledging that they were male. I know, rather rude of me, but still. Once I had an older woman almost yelling at me because prostitutes used to be called madams and ma'am is a shortened word for madam. Personally I thought it was better than "Sorry, old lady."

Ma'am is simply a term to use if you are married. Miss if you're not. Ms. in front of a name for divorcees. Sir is good at all times. So I just look when people call their four-year-old daughters ma'am. But it's not something to get upset about. I usually try to not call them that if a person asks me not to, but get over it. You could be called a lot worse.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Big Girl Time

My friend Amanda and I met at my old church. We were the only people our age with kids their age. For a while we were the only people our age and we had the only kids those ages. So we moved down here and she moved the next week to Florida for her husband to go to blow-em-up school. She moved back a while ago, and we get together every so often.

So today she came down and we went to Ikea. Good grief. It was rather crowded. We'd never eaten there so we got lunch. We took the kids to the play area, which we had never done before either, and it was full. So we took five kids around Ikea's showroom and marketplace. We came back and talked husband stuff and Marine stuff and girl stuff. The kids played fairly well together. The house isn't that big a mess. But mainly we had adult conversations and the kids pretty much occupied themselves. It was nice. I wish I had someone close to my age and the kids all clicked that lived close. Oh well, that would mean that I'd have to talk to people and be normal around them so they'd like me before I was myself. We all know that doesn't work!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Last Sunday's Disastrous Potluck

Usually we have a potluck the Sunday after pick-up. It's a chance to see our husbands, meet their team and make sure that they have food. So this cycle, we hadn't heard anything. The guys finished one cycle on the 22nd and got more kids on the 29th, so the other KV and I though they were just behind schedule. Then she got a call from a wife asking what she was supposed to bring. Well, to keep a long story short and because this is a public site and we should try to be polite, there was a mix up of communication and decision making. I asked Eric and he asked if there was a potluck and he was told that there was. As far as I know, most of the wives probably didn't know about it. So I made 5 pounds of chicken. We left church even though I had a meeting, I fed the girls and Eric calls me a little upset asking where the potluck is. That's never a good sign. I get on base, go to one spot it might be and no one is there. I get ahold of Eric again finally. They cancelled it. One other wife came, and I have no clue where she was from (some of us live an hour to an hour and a half away) or what she brought. Eric was sweet and took the chicken. Apparently it wasn't all that great. I'd thrown it in the crock pot with a bottle of marinade because I didn't know what else to do since it's always right after church. But now I know that doesn't work! And we only have one or two more cycles left hopefully!

What a week

So obviously ClaireBeth and Ziggy started school this week. ClaireBeth is a normal, low maintenance kid, especially when it comes to school. She loves it. Ziggy, on the other hand, is something else. She didn't want to go Tuesday, I wasn't surprised. Wednesday we get in the car and she tells me she can't go. I ask her why. She says "Because Miss Tami told me I couldn't come back." Thursday it's because Daddy told her she couldn't go anymore. Before school even started she was telling me that Miss Tami was mean. She hadn't even met the woman!

Vee and I have had a good week. Nothing too big, just nice and calm for a few hours.

I finally walked to pick Ziggy up. I plan on doing it most of the time, but it hadn't worked out yet this week. And I absolutely have to leave on time. 5 minutes makes a big difference when you're walking 1.5 miles to pick someone up at an appointed time. It felt good, though. I just wish I was one of those women that look cute when they exercise. I look like Bob the Tomato after a bath; red, puffy and wet.

Eric came home last night for the first time since pick up. Of course the house was a mess. It was clean earlier today, but I watched kids, so there went that. He also gets to come home tomorrow night.

My friend's husband (he's my friend too, but that's just usually how I type it) leaves for a year tomorrow morning. It's their first real deployment with kids. Oh well, such is military life.

That's it so far. My friend Amanda is coming down tomorrow. We haven't decided what we're doing yet. I'm sure we'll have fun though. 2 women and 5 kids. What doesn't sound fun about that?

Mi Abuela

In other words, my Grandmother. Okay, don't worry, Spanish lesson's over. My girls call her that because my mom took over Grandmother and I used to call my Grandmother that when I was younger and we were learning Spanish.

My Grandmother is pretty cool. She's in her 3rd quarter century of life and still going. She does the normal granny stuff, like knit and crochet, though she doesn't sew anymore. But she's also still learning and expanding herself. This semester at adult education she's taking a course in Excel. A few years ago she took all the digital camera classes she could find. She loves drawing and painting. She's tried learning the piano and guitar, but she's, what would you call it? Oh! Going at her own pace. Not only this, but she is a very strong follower of God and still attends bible studies and fellowships. Today she's going to Vegas for a Beth Moore/Kay Arthur/ Phyllis Shirrer(?) event. Very exciting!

So what brings this up do you ask? She cut me off from anymore requested completed craft items. Meaning she won't make me anymore afghans or the like if I ask for it. She told me I was old enough to learn how to do it on my own. So she's more than three times my age, she's also been doing this for about 60 years. But nope, I've been abandoned. So she, Vee and I went to the store yesterday to pick out yarn and needles. While we were there I picked up other stuff, so we talked about that. We talked about kid's pajamas. She's great.

When we moved back down here, I was helping her in her yard once a week. But ClaireBeth, my main babysitter, went to school. Vee was growing out of and getting irritated with her travel swing. After almost losing Ziggy to a bunch of cars because she escaped, the whole yard work thing wasn't working. Then Grandmother got sick, so we completely stopped. So it's a year later. Grandmother's better, her yard is now primarily fake grass and I have two kids in school. I also need to learn to knit. So to Grandmother's house we go.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Vee's doctor appointment

Vee went in for her 18 month appointment, and she turns 19 months in a week. We're almost a month behind and it drives me nuts! But they decided to put in a 2 year check up instead of waiting to 2 1/2, so I can catch up then.

She weighed 21 lbs, 6 ounces (10th %) and was 31 inches (a little under 50%). While we were in the waiting room she was fine. But when we started walking through the hallways to get to the room she started freaking out. When we actually got to the room she was full out crying. She especially didn't like being on the table, no matter what position she was in. She didn't even want Dr. Shiau to touch her. So she's starting to remember occasional events from months ago, not just days. Some places she knows very well because we're there all the time, like church and the library. I just wasn't expecting the doctor issues this early. Then she was so mad she cried the whole way home, which took twice as long because they closed the 8 ramps at that exit and I had to find a place to turn around and go back to the next one. Because it makes perfect sense to shut down exits in both directions in the middle of the day right next to a huge university. Good job CalTrans!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

DI family

(rank shown is SGT from before he was promoted)

Okay, for the most part I don't complain about Eric being in the military. It's a job and a lifestyle. I don't really like special attention for it. I don't mind the discounts most of the time:), but the attention drives me nuts. Janitor's families aren't applauded. Garbage men's families aren't thanked.

But tonight I'm going nuts. Part of it is the person or people in charge this cycle (one whole set of recruits that lasts 12 weeks). The grouping of DIs weren't evenly dispersed, so some teams have only 1 or 2 people that know what they're doing, like Eric's. A man may be a great DI, but he still needs experience. Eric came home to drop off laundry and get civilian clothes so he could go get his team something to eat. Then he left. He was home less than 20 minutes. The beginning of the cycle is usually like this, but that's how it will be the whole cycle. The girls are in bed and I'm looking at another lonely night of doing all the clean-up by myself, watching a movie by myself and falling asleep with the light on because there's no one to ask me to put the book down or at least put out the light. Deployments I can handle, I guess because he's not 1/4 of a mile away. I also know he'd be healthier, more rested and better fed if he were overseas. Right now he's sick, exhausted and since he hasn't had me bring food he's had pizza and cheeseburgers. Yea. And two years of this is getting to be a bit much.

The girls are okay, but only because they're used to it. The longest he's been home since we've been married is 14 months, and ClaireBeth was barely three and Ziggy had just been born when he left after that. I honestly don't know what I'd do if he were home that long again. Vee has never known anything else.

So we wait for this to all be over, only knowing that something else will pop up. I'll appreciate the chance to watch movies I like and not having to watch the ones I don't. I'll try new recipes. And I'll talk to and read with God. Even if Eric isn't here to talk to, He always is.


Let's go!

I had more pictures but forgot to turn them rightside up, so I might post them later, if I get around to it.

So the first day of school is over, or at least the school part. Ziggy was rather reluctant to go, but I pretty much made her. ClaireBeth had no problems of course, and the only thing I didn't like was that I couldn't wait with her and go to her classroom. They all line up on numbers outside and the teacher comes and gets them when the bell rings. But for some reason ClaireBeth and Ziggy's classes start at exactly the same time. So off I went to drop Ziggy off.

Ziggy had a good day with Miss Tami and consented to return tomorrow. She's ready for teenager-hood I think, or at least tweenager-hood. When I asked her what she did she couldn't remember. Same with ClaireBeth. Apparently you leave your brain in the classroom. I know my mom had the same problems with me though. She actually had the teacher talk to me.

What did Vee and I do? We went to the library then shopping. We came home and she played and I started a book. She ate, then we went and got Ziggy. I drove today. Ziggy came home and ate because the food delivery got messed up so they didn't eat at school today. Then they took a nap and I read more of my book. We went and got ClaireBeth and came home and made milkshakes. Eric, who hasn't been home since Friday morning and we haven't seen since Sunday's disastrous non-potluck, called and talked to the girls. Then I finished my book and the girls are downstairs watching Dora on the travel DVD player, we don't have a TV downstairs, or emptying the dishwasher. We'll eat dinner, go for a bike ride then go to bed. I'll clean up and maybe, big maybe, fold the four loads of laundry on my bed. I've slept on a foot wide section of bed the last few night because I hate folding laundry. You'd think I would have gotten over it by now. Then tomorrow we start all over again.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!

She doesn't actually read my blog, but the thought is there. She's 49 today and almost exactly 24 1/2 years older than me, my half birthday being August 28 and her birthday being September 1st. I didn't realize that until the other day. Which makes her almost exactly twice my age. Pretty cool. So thanks mom for reminding me that I have less than 6 months left as a 24-year-old. It's one thing to be in your mid-twenties (24-26), it's another thing to be halfway through your twenties. UGH. I'm getting down just thinking about it. They're coming over in a little bit to celebrate. I made key lime bites (meaning I couldn't find my other pie pan and Eric has my favorite one) and I'll make cookies when they get here. Her husband Roger bought her a keyboard and we're chipping in for car repair. Fun! I'll let you know if I kill anyone or anything fun like that.