I did it! I wanted to participate in national blogging month because I have found a form of commutation through this blog that suits me. I wanted to prove to myself that I could find a few minuets each day and post if I set my mind to do so. And I did! Thank you everyone who took the time to read my sometime desperate attempts at a laugh.
And I will not disappoint tonight. I leave you with a joke.
I've got a lot going on this week. Prepping for a kids Christmas party this weekend (167 kids) I'm in charge of crafts. Four each. It's a fun event and I am looking forward to it but still have some details to snip out.
MOPS on Tuesday morning and board meeting in the evening.
Doctors appointment on Wednesday for Tobin.
Speaking at teen MOPS on Thursday night.
But what is truly getting me though is knowing that after Saturday afternoon I am heading to Portland with my girls to shop and eat. And I am going to eat this:
This is the Cheesecake Factory's Miso Salmon. My taste buds are screaming at me right now. Soon, little buds, soon.
Just got back from another full Thanksgiving dinner with my family. I have had an abundance of sinful food over that last two days. So much so that if Matt squeezes me really hard, butter comes out of my tear ducts. That might be cool for a few party tricks so I've got that going for me.
My mom begged and cried for me to get one of those "perfect Christmas shots" of all her grandchildren today. I was given a cute bunch of kids but one was really pissed off at me because he needed lunch and a nap not a photo shoot.
Can you tell what was that is?
Then it even got worse.
And then down right ugly.
Don't you love how everyone else just ignores the distressed child? JC Penny Portrait Studio's here we come!
About this time of year, way back when I was 8 or 9 I remember an unexpected knock at the door. My mother and I rushing to see who came to visit on a Novembers day. It was a stranger holding a cardboard box. He handed my mother the heavy box and said something like, "I know things are hard and I hope this helps". My mom's chin quivered and tears came easy. The box was filled with all the fixings for a Thanksgiving feast. I don't remember if the kindness came from our Church family or a local mission in town and it doesn't matter. Our needs were met. It would be a few years later when I watched my mom take a bag of groceries over to the neighbor's house. Asking my mom why she did that she simply said, "everyone needs a little help sometimes". Today I open up my pantry door and see this.
Blessings in cans, jars and boxes. And I am reminded to be thankful that my basic needs are being met. That my children have never known hunger. And that if I should ever face hunger I've got five pounds of reserve on each thigh that should last me a month or so. Amen.
Do you ever just kick yourself when you hear of a new invention that seems so obvious you question your own intelligence for not coming up with it first? The millions made from the no slip hangers, the Snuggie (which I believe has been around for centuries only know by its prehistoric name, the ROBE), or those clever purses that have a light inside when you open them. All obvious ideas that I discovered only seconds after seeing them on TV. Smitten Kitchen had one of those "why didn't I think of that" recipes. A classic rice crispy treat is a crowd pleaser yes but sometime the sweetness is just too much after four or five squares. A real problem. Solution: Salt! Yes, that's what rice crispy treats have been missing all these years. You must try Smitten Kitchen's, Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats. I won big mommy points when I served these babies. Now you too can eat an entire pan without getting board of gooey sweetness.
The holiday hype has begun, but before you get too merry I wanted to remind all you mommies out there not to get your hopes up. Here is an educational You Tube video to remind us all what we can look forward to.
I don't mean to be a hater but some parts of this are so true! Ho Ho Ho!
Sorry guys no open house tonight. Maybe I'll try to squeeze one in this week.
Christmas cards. Tis the season to be thinking about this chore. Getting that "perfect" shot of three children (who obviously have better things to do) really does take a Christmas miracle. Lately it seem like utter torture for them to sit down for five seconds and LOOK at the camera and dear lord please could you just smile or give some expression that doesn't look like you're trying to send a message with your eyes that you need someone to send help because you're being beaten. I miss the good ole days when I just had one little guy and my problem was WHAT adorable, cute picture I should send out.
All I had to do back then was put him in charming Gymboree out fits and click away.
Or place him by the fire with a vintage toy. . . ahh Or shove him in a box and plop a bow on his head. Pure peace on Earth.
Matt is out protecting the city and I have spent the evening catching up on TiVo and folding laundry. It's 11:45 and I've really pushed procrastination to a new all time low. As I was thinking about my day and what I should write about, I thought about our family trip to Costco. I must say we are nuts for doing warehouse shopping on a Saturday afternoon with all the spawns, but it really turned out to be delightful. All do to the fact that we hit the sample time just perfect. They ate enough that we got to skip lunch, and my picky Tobin gets brave and tries new things, (bonus, bonus)! So I thought I'd tell you bloggers about some of my favorite Costco finds.
1. Uncooked tortillas. You find these in the refrigerated section and they are fabulous. Sure one more step to cook them but you can't beat the soft fresh taste. (They also freeze great)
2. 100% Juice Capri Suns. I keep a box of these in the van for thirsty kids after park play.
3. Organic Kirkland Peanut Butter. We go though a lot of peanut butter at our house and I love that this stuff has no sugar or preservatives. Never gets too hard in the fridge like other brands can. And as a little tip, because you have to stir the oils in natural peanut butter, I like to store my new jars upside down in the pantry so that the oil is at the bottom. Less mess when mixing.
4. Krikland Hamburger meat. I really don't know or care if I am getting a good price on this brand of beef. All I know is it come pre-packaged into one pound tubes so I don't have to ever spend an hour dividing and repackaging raw meat again.
5. Carter jammies. My kids only get dressed if we are leaving the house. It's true and I don't care who knows it. Jammies are warm and great to play in so we have lots at our house. Costco has the best price hands down.
6. Books. As mentioned by our last MOPS speaker and fellow blogger Stephanie, Costco has great buyer for books and unbeatable prices.
7. Baby Wipes. ( I first wrote whips. hehe) Pop-up, alcohol free, hypo allergenic, cheap. I have a stash of these in every room and I don't think my obsession will stop even though the twins don't need them on their bottoms any more.
8. Frozen corn and peas. Can't beat the convenience of having these two resealable bags right in your freezer to make no excuses to have vegetables at every meal.
I got the day off today. From my work. Which is being a mom. I didn't have to parent today. Is this sinking in for anyone?
Last night Matt suggested that I take the day off today. I said yes before he finished his sentence. And then I fell asleep planning my day.
Started off with my first parent/teacher conference. I was really nervous about this. Mainly because I am not one of those parents who thinks their kid walks on water. I'm a realist and as much as I love my son, I know that socially he can be a tad distracting. Ya know with all the knock knock jokes and his long limbs that never stop moving. You can imagine my complete and utter surprise when his teacher told me how bright she thinks Tobin is. She is even recommending him for the TAG (talented and gifted) program. I quickly checked the report card to make sure we were talking about the same kid. We were and I was super proud that his brightness is shining through his gift of gab.
Then Matt picked me up a caramel creme brulee latte' from Starbucks. De-lish!
After that I did something crazy. Wild. I went to a movie by myself. I was invited to see New Moon with some friends at the midnight showing but truthfully I need my beauty rest and listening to the tweens scream would have bugged me. So I went to a matinee - on a weekday, and listened to grown women scream instead. I decided that was much more annoying. My thoughts: New Moon was my least favorite book. I am hoping that it's also my lest favorite movie. The movie doesn't stand on it's own. You have to have read the book to understand it. It was nice to see Edward again but overall . . . meh.
Then I hit some craft stores. The countdown is on for a kids Christmas party. I am in charge of crafts for 160 kids. Four crafts each with a small budget. I've tried to get these errands done with kids but find that when I am trying to figure out yards into inches, divided by kids, divided by price, 30% off coupon . . . . I need absolute silence. And my three kids can do that for only ten seconds at a time and that's with duct tape. Knocked a lot off my lists today!
Topped my day off with some great chatting. Dinner with Michelle and dessert with Abby, Sharon, and Julie.
I came home so refreshed to find fresh baked Christmas cookies on the counter. Looks like Matt and the kids had fun too.
Thursday nights for the Riddle's (under 30 excluded) are spent on the couch with cereal, watching Jim and Pam.
Don't you just love the way they look at each other? Matt and I love The Office and there is nothing better then us both belly laughing with the TiVo on pause (so we don't miss ANY lines). And here's a little unknown fact about me. I love Michael. Sure he has no social skills and DunderMifflin's problems are in fact all because of his managing style but he is endearing to me because of his painful desire to belong and to have a family. Anyone else love Michael? Anyone?
I am transitioning seasons in my life right now. My three year olds are doing more and more for themselves and making it very apparent that I am not the mom of babies anymore.
Almost without fail I sleep through the night.
Jabe and Phoebe sleep in big kid beds and brush their own teeth with me just giving them a quick once over.
Diapers are gone with the exception of sleep time and even then, Jabe is dry most of the time and they both throw their used pull-ups away and put on underwear.
I don't have to mess with bibs or cleaning high chairs.
My kitchen clean up is easier with the food to mouth ratio increasing.
The twins don't even use a stroller anymore!
The saying, "The days are long but the years are fast", resinates with me on so many levels. I am sad to say that in the drudgery of living the everyday grind my goal can sometimes becomes surviving to make it to nap time and then to bed time. Then before I know it all those nap and bed times add up to years of prodding them to grow up. I don't want to be too hard on myself with rushing babyhood, for a momma it's down right messy, hard work. But with the knowledge that our family is complete and babyhood is over, I am ready to slow things down a bit and savor.
I found that I really started noticing this change over the summer. We went to our family cabin for a vacation in McCall. Although if you're a parent, you know that vacationing with your kids is not really a "vacation" yet just a change in routine. Most of the time requiring more work than at home because of the packing, unpacking, sleep adjustments, hyper kids, and baby-proofing a new place. This year we were unusually light with much less baby gear. In general they don't have to be watched every second and are all marvelous sleepers so Matt and I were truly able to relax. So much so that we thought we'd try a family canoe trip.
We all stayed dry and each took turns trying out different moose calls. They never came and I am slightly grateful for that.
I'm not going to lie, I wouldn't mind time traveling and taking this now six-year-old on a stroll:
Matt and I just finished watching, "Slum Dog Millionaire" and I feel like I want to stab my eyes out with Q-tips. It's the kind of movie that makes me want to sneak into my babies rooms just to gaze at some innocents for a few minuets. Well done movie, but really, really hard to watch and not suck my thumb and want to adopt every sweet, beautiful orphaned Indian child. So tonight as I sit at the computer, traumatized, all I want to post is memory of watching the fireworks at Disneyland this spring.
These pictures were all taken the day before we moved in. In these two rooms I made the not-so-popular choice of painting my cabinets milk glass green. Matt gave me total control in these types of decisions and to make it fair on him I let him know that he would get to spend our lottery winnings any way he pleased (we've never played). He was very concerned over my clear insanity when I insisted (cried) that this was the color the cabinets had to be. I even bought a cream and sugar set of jadeite so I could color match the paint to my exact vision. Throw in some white subway tile and Absolute black granite counter tops and I am thrilled how it turned out.
I took in a picture of our old "coffee station" to the carpenter and we created this little nook for my new pad. Likey? The laundry room has the same lovely green cabinets except I put polished chrome hardware on the doors.
The washer and dryer were built on pedestals which is very convenient. Did you see my farm sink (swoon)? You think I had to cry to get green cabinets? This sink was an all out campaign to get.
Matt: You do realize that this one sink would be more money than all our other sinks combined?
Me: Yes, but it has a built in soap dish, so I am pretty sure it all evens out.
Matt: You do realize that the cabinets will have to be specially built to accommodate the weight of this massive cast iron tank of a sink?
Me: Yes, but every time I look at this sink I will weep with gratitude that I, a little girl who grew up on food stamps, gets to wash all of my delicates in such a fine monument of our indoor American plumbing history.
Matt: If you promise to get more of said "delicates" and promise to wear them often and you swear to never again speak of, "American plumbing history" we can get the sink.
This is the other side of the laundry room. A great place to store our shoes, hang our coats and store craft items in the cubbies.
Do you see the little center nook? I call it the "charging station". We can walk in from the garage and plug in our cells, hang up our keys, dump our mail and check our home phone messages in one little area. The most useful two feet in our house.
I've often been asked why my blog is named, "Glory Laine". My middle name is Laine and it suggests to me quant path, and paths remind me of a journey and I blog to record my personal journey. Then I wanted something spiritual to show that I am on this journey with God's help. I debated between mercy and glory. Mercy lane sounded like a nursing home where people go to die, so Glory Laine it is.