Friday, December 18, 2009


12/15/09 - branching imaginary story about a sweet horse named Dove that Sweet Potato meet a few months ago:

"Once upon a time there was a horse named Dove. When Dove went to play outside she would play with the other horses. Then she would go back to her stall. The next day Dove woke up early and played outside and played by herself and ran and jumped in the air. Then Dove saw something, it was a horse! Dove couldn't believe it! But soon they made friends. Dove's owner made her come in her stall. The next day Dove woke up and heard a noise. Then all of the owners took all of the horses out of their stalls then all kinds of horses went outside. The horses ran around the barrels and jumped over the gate by the barn."


"Yesterday Anna and Kaitlyn came to our house. I taught Kaitlyn how to sew. Kaitlyn sewed two Christmas presents. Then Anna came in the room and asked to sew and I helped her sew Pineapple's cat. While Kaitlyn was sewing, she said that they also go to church. She said she went to CSD and she missed me because I always go in the grownup church. Then they had to leave to go to church."

It's so fun to have friend over!! While the "big girls" were sewing and hanging out, Jalapeno and his "betrothed" Anna helped make peanut butter cups. But that wasn't exciting enough for them, so they went down to the playroom, to play fire-rescue heroes!!

12/18/2009 - a big day in our home!! We went...well, let's let SP tell the story:

"Yesterday we got birds! We really didn't know that we were going to get the birds. We have three of them. We had to get a cage, a toy stick and we had to get a lot of stuff. We were going to get two birds but my mom said htat we could have three. We have to clean the cage. We put paper towels on the bottom of the cage. We love our birds. We have to take good care of the birds."

So yes, we went to the pet store to add to our hermit crab collection, which had dwindled over the summer down to one crab - Water. They didn't have any at the first store, so we trekked onward, in search of the perfect companions for dear Water. After we made our crab selection ("no we are NOT paying $3 more just because the shell is red, white and blue!") we were headed out of the store when we discovered that this store was closing, and so all of the bird stuff was half off...AND, I had in my possession cash from family to buy gifts for the kids for Christmas...sooo to make a long story short - I know - TOO LATE!! - we came home with three darling little spice finches who are named Miley, Angel and Puggy. OH, and three crabs (can you REALLY call them cute?!?) Whose names change by the hour, but I believe right now, we have Thunder Bolt (really, a crab named Thunder Bolt?!?), Rosie (no offense Granny) and Calypso.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Ummmm....Days 4-14...

Well, it's been kinda crazy around here for the last two weeks, so I have not had the time to get on here and keep the tally I am going to let Sweet Potato's journal entries clue you in, and add a few fun pics too!


"Yesterday while my mom was gone, Grammy, Jalapeno and I played war. Then Jalapeno and I played monkeys. My mom came home. Then Jalapeno, Pineapple and I found an interesting game. We danced with a jumping plastic horse. Last night we listened to music while we ate dinner. Before dinner I was drawing ballerinas for a book."


"Yesterday we decorated the rail. Then Mommy and the boys set up the nutcracker. Last night we went to a place called the street of Bethlehem. We made a lantern, and a necklace, and we made all kinds of things and I can't remember the rest. We saw a show of Mary and Joseph. Baby Jesus was a real baby but it was not really Jesus. Yesterday before we went to the thing, Mommy and Grammy were putting up the houses that have lights. Yesterday I got to use Christmas stencils in a book."


"Yesterday it was my Mom's birthday. I gave her a special card, it was a ballerina with a paper tutu, it was purple. I gave her a rock and a picture. Of course the rock was purple, because her favorite color is purple. Mommy also likes chickens. Mommy has a whole shelf in the schoolroom. We even have crabs."


"We got to open presents and I got a horse barn. Jalapeno likes horses because he likes to copy me. but I have no idea why. We have a fake horse outside my barn. I took some paper and cut three boxes and wrote their names. Then Mommy made some saddles. My barn has a gate and a trough and a jump over gate. It has three horses because I got two with it and I got one in my stocking."


"Today we are having chocolate chip pancackes. Jalapeno came to Daddy's office to tell me. I was in a hurry. We all like chocolate chips. One time Jacob, Christian and Will came and we had chocolate chip pancakes. This morning Mommy was blending some chocolate chips. I am glad that it did not wake up Grammy. We don't always have chocolate chip pancakes."


"Today we are going to the gym. There is a foam pit, and a trampoline, balls, big stuffed shapes, and you can roll in a big circle because it has handles. We like to go to the gym because it has all those fun things. It also has gymnastics bars. I always swing on the bars because I can practice for the trapeze at home. I am happy that Grammy gets to go. But I am sad that Grandpa didn't get to come."

One of the things that Grammie and Sweet Potato have been doing a lot of, is sewing! SP is getting so good with her needle and thread! She is making pillows, an apron for Grammie, and stuffed animals for her brothers.

Another special event that happened while Grammie was here was we got to go to the Compassion Christmas party - the kids had a great time watching and listening to some drumming and singing from Africa, eating cookies, making an ornament and listening to story time.

So as you can see, it has been a busy two weeks! We so loved having Grammie and Grandpa here with us, and everyone is so sad they are gone.

Naptime is over - better get busy!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Day 3...

Sweet Potato's journal entry:

"Why did I get ice cream? Because I kept my room clean. I had to keep my room clean for fourteen days. And I did. And since I kept my room clean I got a chocolate dipped cone. Jalapeno and Pineapple kept their room clean. And after the fourteenth day Grandpa and Grammy came. And we went to Wendy's and after Wendy's we went to DQ. Last night we cracked nuts. Then I had to go to bed early. Then I fussed about my glasses. Today it snowed but it is too cold outside. Last night I got to sleep in the boy's room."

Like I said..."character training"!!

We started a plan, two weeks ago to keep our rooms "inspection ready": toys put away, clothes put away or in the laundry, beds made. Each day they got a check mark if they met the criteria...if they got 11 checks, they get an ice cream cone, 14 checks and they get a chocolate dipped cone. They all had to sign the "contract" and did amazingly well..the boys got twelve checks, and Sweet Potato got all fourteen!! Now instead of saying "Go clean your room" fourthousandsevenhundredtwelve times, I say, "hmmm...I wonder if your rooms are ready for inspection?" and they all race away to make sure they are...Mommy is loving it!!

While I was at MOPS today, the kids got to stay home with Grammie and Grandpa! They played games, colored, did puzzles, played cards and read books - what a fun morning!

After the boys went down for quiet time, Sweet Potato and I sat down to do the 'prescribed' math for the day...and she was HOT, so we did seven days worth in about an hour! It makes up for the days when the brain is turned OFF, and we don't get any done!!

Another day full of learning, and it's only 2:41!!

Day 2...

Day 2:

Sweet Potato's journal entry:

"Today Grammy and Grandpa came and I am glad. Grammy takes us to McDonald's but only Grandpa takes us to DQ. Mommy took us to Wendy's and then we went to DQ. Yesterday I got to use two ovens! I am glad. I love horses and Jalapeno likes horses too. Mrs. Bethany likes tigers. Grammy likes a canary bird."

Today, we went to the "Big Belly Airport" (don't ask me why they call it that, they started using that term when they were 4 and 2...preschool humor, I guess) to pick up Grammie and Grandpa...can you say EXCITED?!!? After spotting the ugly blue horse (I mean honestly...with the gorgeous view that the airport provides, why do we need to have Denver guests talking about the bright blue horse with the flaming orange eyes?!?), we parked and went in to meet them at the top of the escalator.

After dinner, the boys got to color with Grammie and Grandpa, while Sweet Potato had some, shall we say, "character training"...hoping for a more relaxed day tomorrow!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Day 1

Sweet Potato's journal entry:

"11/30/09 Today I got to go to Mrs. Patty's. She taught me how to use both mixers. We made mints and nut bars and I can't remember the rest, but we made four recipes. It was fun! We even went to a store and I bought a Colonial Times book (Jalapeno got Bakugan, Pineapple got a car)."

She got to hang out with Mrs. Patty for the whole day! Besides the cooking they did, they also watched a couple of movies, played hide and seek (Howie the dog played too) and generally she had a good time being the only kid in the house.

After Jalapeno's reading lesson (he was reading some short sentences today!!) the boys and I had Mrs. Allison, Seth and Paige over, and we made bunches of monster cookies, some peanut butter cups and some meringue cookies.

Once Daddy got home, he and the kids worked on a center piece for our Christmas table...they are not done yet, but it looks pretty cool!

Schooling in December...

I was talking to my sister the other day, and we both decided that we are closet "unschoolers"...we often do spend the day cooking or building mud flats out of pudding and marshmallows or a day running errands where we practice math as we choose each item from the shelf...but there is something in us that just won't let us put down that checklist of subjects that need to be covered.

So, in the spirit of really enjoying our time as a family this December, we are embarking upon a new course of study from today, until January 4th, when we will hit the books, and hopefully still be able to keep some of the fun in our day! And to help us out, my parents are joining us for two weeks, and Daddy has a nice long break from work between Christmas and New Years, so he can join in the fun too!!

I decided that every day, Sweet Potato is going to do her math lesson, her flash cards and a good journal entry. Jalapeno is going to do a reading lesson. And from there, fun, fun...and in the process, lots of learning!!

Here are the options we have to choose from:

Art - Sweet Potato has a great drawing book about horses that we never seem to get I am going to ask Grandpa (who is a great artist) to help her through that book.

Science - a whole day doing science with water, or air, or in the kitchen. We usually read the book, but now, we are going to do ALL the experiments!

Cooking - there's always a lot of that going on around here...but how fun to get to cook with Grammie and for our friends! And Sweet Potato is going to spend the day with one of my friends, cooking sweets for a party...oh, soooo fun!!

Sewing - again, looking for some help from Grammie here. One of the projects I would like to do is teach Sweet Potato to piece a quilt top for our group Crafts with a Cause, who make blankets for foster kids.

Crafts, crafts and more crafts! Sweet Potato went through all our Family Fun magazines and marked a whole lot of things she wants to make, so we are going to try and do them ALL!

Games - I moved them all to the school room, where we now have a table big enough for everyone, so I am hoping we can play games every night after dinner. Oh, and puzzles!!!

Field Trips - a few places we would like to go: Whit's End; Littleton History Museum; DMNS; the Aquarium; letterboxing; and Night in Bethlehem - most of these are free, or we have a membership, thanks to super nice Aunt's and Uncles!!

Choir and band concerts - one of my MOPS mom's husbands is a principal near here and he gave me a schedule of all the Jeffco concerts for this season...we are going to try and go to a few of them.

So that is our plan, and we will try and keep the blog updated, so you can follow the fun!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

It's Football Season, once again! would think that after 40 plus years of having a game on every Sunday, I would know more about this sport than I do. But for me, football is more of a sensory experience, if you will..."let me s'plain":

I was born in Buffalo, and raised by Bills fans from my birth. If I remember correctly, my mom even rode on the back of a very small motorcycle, while pregnant with me, to see a game - it was a looong ride, on a narrow seat, she said!!

Every Sunday found us all in front of the TV, and there was a whole lot of yelling and screaming going on..."GO!!!", "Run, run, run!!", "Can you believe that Reff?!?" I was never particularly into the game, after all, there was instant replay to catch any play that was worth seeing. And there was OJ - back in the good ol' days, when he was a rockin' football player and had a great tv ad that showed him jumping people, chairs and suitcases as he ran through the airport.

After we moved to Atlanta, my parents had to, out of necessity, become Falcons fans...these were pre-cable days, and you could only see the games broadcast for your area. And every Sunday, after church and lunch, you would find my whole family in our living room, around the TV. I usually claimed a corner of the black vinyl, Spanish style sofa (read: black plastic and lots of wood), while my Dad would get the other end, and my mom the loveseat. The boys always claimed the floor, and my little sister, my dad's lap. I always, (always!) had a book and when the weather finally cooled off, would wrap myself in the softest blanket I could find, and zone out in my book, crinkling the plastic library wrap on the book, and listening with one ear to my family watching the game.

And that was football, til I left home to get married. And who did I marry - another football fan! This one, my darling, loves Virginia Tech, and once we moved to Denver, we became Broncos fans too. Once again, every Sunday (and later Monday's - and now...well, whatever day of the week they play - I can't keep it straight anymore!) finds us tuning into The Game. I was even downtown for the parade after the Superbowl one year! How exciting that was!!

Now, I am responsible for "Snacks", and so, instead of getting to read for the whole game, I often find myself in the kitchen, watching the game from across the room, or curled up with the kids, muting (or turning off) commercials that are no longer quite so family friendly.

And there is still a lot of yelling...I finally figured out that it is an acceptable way to really "get loud", and so we do - much to the enjoyment of our kids! Jalapeno decided when he was two, that he wanted to be a football team, when he grows up. Not a football player, but the whole team! A friend said that maybe he will hit so hard, the guy he takes out will say "Man, I feel like I got hit by the whole team!" , and so, his nickname will be Team. We'll see...right now, he won't even defend himself against Pineapple, when he is sitting on his chest and laughing!

So today, as the new season opens, who knows what will happen for our team...and I don't really care. For me, football is a time to gather together, to eat favorite foods, to yell, and laugh, and spend the afternoon together! And to create memories for MY kids, of the days when they used to watch football, with their yelling, screaming, crazy parents!

Hope "your team' does well this season, and that you will make lots of good memories with your family!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

An Officer's Life

An Officer's Life

You wonder why he pulled you over and gave you a ticket for speeding"

He just worked an accident where people died because they were going too fast

You wonder why that cop was so mean

He just got done working a case where a drunk driver killed a kid

You work for 8 hours

He works for up to 18 hours

You drink hot coffee to stay awake.

The cold rain in the middle of the night keeps him awake.

You complain of a "headache", and call in sick.

He goes into work still hurt and sore from the guy he had to fight the night before

You drink your coffee on your way to the mall.

He spills his as he runs code to a traffic crash with kids trapped inside

You make sure your cell phone is in your pocket before you leave the house.

He makes sure his gun is clean and fully loaded and his vest is tight

You talk trash about your "buddies" that aren't with you.

He watches his buddy get shot and wounded in front of him.

You walk down the beach, staring at all the pretty girls.

He walks down the highway looking for body parts from a traffic crash

You complain about how hot it is.

He wears fifty pounds of gear and a bullet proof vest in the middle of July and still runs around chasing crack heads

You go out to lunch, and complain because the restaurant got your order wrong.

He runs out before he gets his food to respond to an armed robbery.

You get out of bed in the morning and take your time getting ready.

He gets called out of bed at 2 am after working 12 hours and has to be into work asap for a traffic homicide

You're angry because your class ran 5 minutes over.

His shift ended 4 hours ago and there's no end in sight

You call your girlfriend and set a date for tonight.

He can't make any plans because on his off days he still gets called back into work

You yell and scream at the squad car that just past you because they slowed you down.

He's in the driver seat of the squad car, on his way to cut somebody out of their car only to find out that they are dead when he gets there.

You roll your eyes when a baby cries in public

He picks up a dead child in his arms and prays that it was crying

You criticize your police dept and say they're never there quick enough.

He blasts the siren while the person in front of him refuses to move while talking on their cell phone and doing their makeup.

You hear the jokes about fallen officers and say they should have known better.

He is a hero and runs into situations when everyone else is running away in order to make sure no one else gets hurt and loses his life doing it


You are asked to go to the store by your parents. You don't.

He would take a bullet for his buddy without question

You sit there and judge him, saying that it's a waste of money to have them around.

Yet as soon as you need help he is there

Thank you all those who sacrifice so much for our sake.
May you come home safe each and every day....

Posted by my friend Angela, who is a Denver Police Officer's Wife
Thanks Rob, for putting it all on the line every day!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sod, sod and more sod!

My I please brag on my kids? Just a bit?

We have been in the middle of some serious yard renovations, well, since we moved in four years ago. The previous owners had done nothing except have it mowed twice a month, oh and install some weird red plastic lattice around the hot tub...and they lived here for almost thirty years!

Today, we got to the part where Steve got to cut the sod around the perimeter, so that we can mulch and rock it. This part has been a long time coming, but we were not looking forward to it, even though our awesome neighbor is letting us borrow his sod cutter (I think we have had it for about three years now...). But now, the pressure is on, because Good Neighbor is ready to sell the sod cutter, and there is no way we want to cut out that much sod with a shovel!!

So Steve headed out this morning and started cutting - make that started being dragged around the yard by a weighted machine that has a mind of its own. Six hours and three shorn off sprinkler heads later, most of the sod is cut, but there is always some piece that gets missed, so we need to get all of the sod up and out of the way, so we can be sure we are done, before we return the cutter. And there is the minor little detail that 16 yards of Brown Mulch is being dumped in our driveway on Thursday morning...and I won't be able to park in the garage again 'til all the mulch is moved - talk about something to inspire you!!

I headed out around 4:30, after spending all morning running errands with Jalapeno...that was a trip in and of itself, how many of you have boys who just fall down while they are walking down an aisle? Just walking, no running, skipping or raised sections of floor, they just fall down. Well Carol Barnier has written a book all about it, so read it and you will understand what our morning was like!

Anyway, I headed out with the kids to start moving sections of sod to the area where we are going to use them to raise the level of the yard, and Jalapeno came running over and wanted to help. Then Sweet Potato joined in, and soon little Pineapple jumped in too! They were picking up sections of cut sod (they were small, but STILL!!), loading them in the wagon, helping me drag the wagon to the area, unload the wagon and place them on the ground. Over, and over and over. Soon we had a bakery of sorts - "Look Mommy, I have some cookies" (square pieces of sod), "Look, Mommy, I made Tootsie Rolls!" (rolled sections of sod that Sweet Potato was making), "Look Mommy!! I found a snake!" (or 'serpent', we have been reading Genesis),and on and on they went, creating names for all the different shaped pieces, and before you know it, we were in full on "game" mode and having a blast!

These amazing kids worked with few breaks from 4:30 til after 8:00, when it got too dark to see!! I could not believe that they kept going! We talked about how cool it would be to sit when the project was all done, and drink iced tea and think about what we had done as a family, and they totally got into that!

So now, they are all snuggled in their beds, totally wiped out from a day of fun...MOVING SOD! If I had planned this, it would have been a disaster, but it wasn't! It was the most enjoyable day of yard work that I have ever had! I hope there are more to come!

Side yard, this area will be mulched and have lots of cool 'shrubberies", when it is done.

This is the area that is being filled to level it with the yard closer to the house.

This will be "The Orchard" - we are planning on putting fruit trees in here, maybe a grape vine on the fence, some mouth is watering already! Can you taste the jam?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Out of the mouths of babes...

I came in this morning from checking on the sprinklers in the front yard - with an old system, it takes lots of checking if you don't want geysers of water shooting into the sky and the nice man in the water truck writing you a kind note asking for money - anyway, I came in and heard this conversation at the breakfast table between Sweet Potato (7), Jalapeno (5), Pineapple (4) and Sweet Girl (3) who is over for the day.

To give you a little background, my three kids all saw Dr Monk this week, who tested them to see what "color" they are. It gives a guideline as to what things tend to give you problems: if you are Red, you should stay away from wheat; Green means you are sensitive to chemicals; Blue, you should stay away from dairy. So this is very fresh in their minds...

J - "I can't eat wheat, 'cause I'm red."

P - "Me too! I can't eat wheat, 'cause I'm wed too!"

SG - "I can't eat wheat too!"

SP - "No P, you're green. But Jacob can't eat wheat, he must be red like me."

P - "Mommy, can I eat wheat?"

Mommy - "Yes, P, you can eat wheat, but you can not have chemicals, so you can't eat anything out of a bag."

P- "Oh"

J - "Jacob's not red, he's kind of pink, or tan, like me."

Hmmm.....sounds like we need to do a little more explaining of what "being red" means to little Jalapeno!!

Hope you have a great weekend!

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Vacation That Lasted One Day Too Long

I think I am finally ready to blog about that last crazy day of our was a tough one, and I needed a few days to recuperate, you know, to be able to find some humor in the situation?

That fateful day, The Last Day Of Our Vacation, started out pretty well. Mom and the kids slept in after an exhausting day of driving through Arkansas (should it really take all day to do that? I mean, honestly, it took all day to drive through Kansas, and it is way bigger - anyway, I digress). While they all snored away, I perched on the edge of the bathtub, checking out what was going on in FB-land, surfing around a little bit, just generally killing time. If I had known what was coming, I would have spent that time on my knees!

I got everyone dressed (well, Mom dressed herself) and we headed down to breakfast. While I ran around like a short order cook, trying to fill constantly changing breakfast orders for three little road weary kiddos, I was also trying (unsuccessfully) to keep the kids from watching a blaring TV story about a shooting in a health club. So sad!

After I made the kids eat some scrambled eggs, I discovered that they were totally nasty, and pulled the Mommy card and threw mine in the trash. I was trying to get some protein in the kiddos, before all the cereal and waffles hit their bellies, but did not realize that the eggs were unseasoned and tasted like someone had mixed them the night before, put them in the metal pan and left them to die a slow death in a warming oven. UGH!!!

Then, on to potty breaks "I don't have to go poop or pee!!!", loading the car "_______ come back here RIGHT NOW!", and making sure we were truly on the correct road, headed out of Kansas City, to the WEST!!

After we got a few miles down the road, the aforementioned child-who-did-not-have-to-use-the-facilities, finally decided it was time. RIGHT NOW! Because, after all, he had to go "weawy, weawy, BAD!" So we started looking for a good place to stop. Turns out, we picked a bad exit, and had to drive 3 miles off the highway to find a dirty bathroom in the middle of a construction zone, but we only had to make one U-turn, so it was all good. We loaded up with caffeinated tea for Mommy and Cheetos (hey, those were for Mommy too!) and found our way back to the ribbon of highway that was going to lead us home!

A couple of miles and a few handfuls of Cheetos later, I heard a loud pop come from the front of the van...looking back, I did not see that we had run over any tire fragments (or dead armadillos - oh wait, that was Arkansas), so we merrily drove on, singing and munching and dreaming of sleeping in our own beds. Until, that is, I heard the car next to us making some really loud noises. "Wow, (I said to mom), that car really has a serious engine problem." Turns out it was our front tire, which had been punctured by who-knows-what!

I managed to get the van off the highway and amidst cries from the back seat of "Mommy, what's wrong?" & "Why are we STOPPPPPPPING MOMMMMMMMY?" I managed to get Steve on the phone and then called my dear friends at AAA. Turns out it's a good thing I have been paying those nice people for all these years, because in only thirty minutes, they sent a nice young man to change my tire!

Now, this nice young man did pull up in a red Explorer, with no markings on it, and he was accompanied by a young man with lots of tattoos and a scary T-shirt. I rolled the window up most of the way and asked all the right questions. After all, I do read those crazy emails that fly around the Web world, so I knew these guys could be axe murdering, Cheeto stealing, up to no good fellows!

But it is hard to change a tire when the spare is locked under the van, and the only way to get it out is to unscrew it from the inside floor board, so open it I did, and was immediately thankful that all of the wet clothing from the day before (including some of my unmentionables) had dried and been safely tucked away in a suitcase! But I continued to be hyper-cautious, after all, my babies were in that van!

After the tire was changed, the nice boy (his name is Andy, by the way) had us follow him to his shop, where he planned to cut us all into small pieces, and... OH WAIT! That is just where my imagination went! Actually, Andy is a 21 year-old furniture making, car repairing, hard working boy, who helps his mom out in the family business in a little Kansas town of 500 people. No more TV for me!!!

While Andy drove to another small Kansas town to pick up a new-used tire for us, that would get us back to Denver, mom took the kids to the town park and I found out all about life in...well, I can't remember the name of the town, from Andy's mom, Margo.

Finally, we are on the road again!! Tires intact, cheetos sadly gone, but on the road, headed for home!!

Fast forward (because this is getting really long - but not nearly as long as the day actually was) a few hours. Dinner has been consumed, "Denver" is finally on the little green signs, with mileage that looks doable; and what do my wavering, road weary eyes spy, in my rear view mirror? Oh, no - you have got to be kidding me!! Another nice young man, in a uniform this time and in a marked car, with pretty little spinning lights on top. I knew immediately that he was not there to wish us well on our journey...

More wails from the back seat, along with some very bright and chipper "Hi, what are you doing?" (that would be my Jalapeno) and a speeding ticket and a warning later (my tail light was out, which I knew, but could not fix though I tried) and we were once again on our way...

At this point, I am thinking "What else can happen to us on this day?!!" Good grief! But I was also thinking about what could happen on a highway, driving so many miles, and was earnestly praying that we would make it home safely!

Welcome to Colorful Colorado!!! I have never been so happy to see that sign in my life!! If it is possible to do a happy dance, while driving 75 miles an hour down the freeway (that is the Colorado speed limit, btw!) - then I was doing it...until a few miles down the road when my little Jalapeno said, "Mommy, I don't feel so good" and proceeded to loose his dinner all over him, his seat, and his fave blanket "Baby". So, I pulled over again, managed to get Sweet Potato moved over in front of Pineapple (more thoughts of what happens when your car gets hit from the back next to the highway) and crawled into the back to help out the kid.

I managed to get him cleaned up, and then I went to shake out "Baby" but I did not take into account the sheer wind force of a semi blasting down the highway, and was promptly covered in the "residue" shall we say from dear, dear Baby - YUCK!!!

OK, what else?!?!?!

Thankfully, nothing! We finally pulled into our driveway around 10 pm, and I almost kissed the ground, almost!

I can truly say I am happy to be HOME!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Day 20 - hiding out in my sister's house

So we have finally reentered the 21 century, air conditioning, high speed internet, and grocery stores with gluten free offerings! Yeah!!

We are at my sister's house now... we arrived on Saturday evening, after a drive down from VA and dinner with my sister-in-law, who begged a ride back from the Stumps. This would be my sister--in-law Jeanne, who had the open heart surgery a few months ago. She is healing very well and is looking forward to getting some strength back.

The kids had such a good time hanging with the Cousins in VA. The ones who were there are 9, 11 and 13, and live near Fort Lauderdale. We have not seen them for a year, so they were all excited to get together at Granny and Papa's and many forts were built, apples gathered and fire flies captured in a blissful week in The Stumps.

We also took a nice walk along an old rail bed converted to a hiking trail to the Shot Tower, which was used during the 1800's to make lead shot for muzzle loading shotguns and muskets. It is a real engineering feat, if you ask me...the tower is 75 tall (built in a time and place without any kind of big construction equipment) and there is a shaft into the ground that is also 75 feet deep, plus a tunnel out to the river. They would pour the molten lead out at the top of the shaft, it would form into balls and when it reached the river water at the bottom of the shaft, the shot would chill and set. Very amazing to think that all this happened 200 plus years ago!

We also celebrated Pineapple's 4th birthday! He was so funny, when he realized that he was finally four, he ran around to everyone in the house (there were 15 misc aunts, uncles, cousins siblings and grandparents), telling them all "I am four now!". He got to pick his dinner, cake and ice cream, so we dined on pizza, carrots and cucumbers, "tolkit take with tolkit tip frosting and tolkit tip ice tream". So fun to celebrate a birthday with extended family!!

alt=""id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5357975681011108562" />

I hope you enjoy the pics!


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Travel thoughts...

I was just thinking about something I heard at the CHEC convention last week. The speaker said that you can not really know a person through a blog, or that type of "relationship". Her point was that you don't see the real person, or know the whole story, based on what you read on their blog. I thought, "not me!" I always try to put the real Trina out there..." Then I started thinking about our day yesterday. You got a five minute flash through a 15 hour day, and trust me, you only got the good parts! You did not get the whiney-all-day three year old. The I-need-to-go-outside-and-smash-something five year old, or the seven year old who is actually doing very well on this trip! You did not see the two hours it took to finally get all the kids asleep, and well, neither did I! I finally gave up on the last one, and went to bed with him on the other side of the king size bed, and passed out myself! The kids are trying to survive on 8 hours or less of sleep, when they normally get 12...they are eating all kinds of foods (and chemicals) that they normally don't get, and they are stuck in a moving vehicle for 6-10 hours a day!

So, all that to say...Enjoy the glimpses into our trip, and know that we covet your prayers as we make this incredible journey! We are having a blast, are exhausted, and would not trade it for the world!

These pics were made about an hour ago...I have since packed right over their heads, and they are still all in the exact same positions! Poor, tired babies!