Tuesday, May 24, 2011

the old and the new


I drove my yellow car to the sea.  Mile upon mile she courageously drove through mountains and prairie winds.  I sat behind her steering wheel kind of nervous as she is a very old lady,  but she did it and now she is getting used to her new home and the drizzle and salty air.  I think she likes it as we both sat staring at the boats and the grayish-greenish cove water and smiled.  

We are about to put an offer on a house ( I think) but I’m hesitant as I worry about every decision and analyze every aspect.  We could just live on base which has a lot of pros as the location is great but schools (meh) and space (12,000 pounds of books) make me want to live elsewhere.  We want an old house (do we?) as that is where we are happiest (right, husband?).

I hope you are well and that the sun shines in your heart.



Tuesday, May 17, 2011

a few things

  If I had to pick a favorite toy from my childhood it would probably have to be Strawberry Shortcake dolls.  I loved them like they were real people. 


These are from my childhood. 

Though I’ve tried to stay away from sales (because we have a crud load of stuff to move) I couldn’t help myself when Maggie and I stumbled on a sale.  I was giving her a driving lesson and we were in this cute little neighborhood, looking back it’s kind of like the car just drove there on its own.


We found these dolls, and a crud load (phrase of the day, I guess) of stuff.   I want to open them and smell their musty/fruity smell. 

And if that isn’t exciting enough I’m going to leave in a minute to pick up our oldest gurl at the teeny tiny airport.  She is flying on a teeny tiny plane to come visit us, her family.


She overslept this morning and woke to her taxi honking outside.  She texted me to tell me she forgot her computer charger and her underwear.  I texted her back that it is okay because I am her mother and I will buy her new underwear.

And lastly I shall tell you that on Friday as my shy son Sam was about to leave for a banquet dinner he asked if he could wear some of his Dad’s cologne.  I said no but I’m sure I had a (SAY WHAT???) kind of look on my face.  He has yet to shave and still has peach fuzzy cheeks like his little brother.


Though now that Sam is older I don’t kiss his cheeks as much as I used to.  It’s not so much as a kiss really, it’s more like a mwuh mwuh which lucky for me Henry doesn’t mind a bit.


It looks as if he is playing with a chewed up piece of pizza, but it’s Play Doh.  When you are four you have to mix the colors even though this can be very upsetting for those around you who are in the 8 yr old age range.

Shall we summarize today’s word usage?

crud load- 2




Happy day, friends!


Friday, May 13, 2011

Little things


A small colorful cupcake wrapper can add color to your whole day.

Especially if it’s your eighth birthday and you have a matching hair ribbon.



Michael’s dollar bins are full of good stuff…like cute cupcake wrappers.  And we all know cupcakes taste so much better when they are wearing pretty wrappers. (Even if you make them with store bought stuff at 11:00 at night because you forgot during the day that you told the teacher you would be sending in cupcakes and instead you sat at the kitchen table and painted by number for 2.5 hours.)

Are you tired of me blogging about birthdays?  It’s hard not to as I like looking back and seeing how everyone is growing.  This is it until Fall when we have birthdays nonstop from Sept-Nov…

Okay? You cool with that?

Happy Friday!

Monday, May 9, 2011


I have happy memories of eating lunch with my grandparents.  They called it dinner  and called dinner supper.  And my Grampy called hot dogs weiners, which would make some of us laugh into our napkins.  “WHO WANTS ANOTHER WEINER?”  (How can you not laugh?) 

Anyway, I like lunch best.  Lunch at the picnic table with a big platter of sandwiches cut into triangles, a pitcher of tea and a bowl of sliced pickles. If we are lucky there will be some leftover cake or pie that will generously be divided up so we can wash the dish…as if we need an excuse to finish cake.


Summertime lunches is what I thought of as I made these bibs for a friends baby.  Bibs are fun to make and if you are a mom you know you can’t ever have enough.  I wonder how long I could sit and make bibs before I get tired of it?


Have you ever tried Sarabeth’s jam?  I tried it on a whim because it has no corn syrup.  I buy mine at Tuesday Morning… this store is kind of hit or miss when it comes to good stuff, our local one is pretty good but I’ve been in others that are pretty junky.  The jam is also sold at William’s Sonoma and Whole Foods.  It is really good- and I’m not getting paid to say that!  We buy a  lot of it:


The jars have measuring cup markings which make it hard to recycle them, we use them for everything from painting and art:


To summertime treats:


Frozen Lemonade with Berries from Victoria magazine in the 1990’s.  These are great for picnics as they double as ice for the cooler and dessert.


That recipe inspired my whole post as I pulled it out because our weather is crazy hot.  I took this off the tv this morning…


Someone will have to remind me of this post when we are in our new home and I’m complaining about snow.


I hope you had a great Mother’s Day…we went skating, I told my kids to wear long socks only I didn’t look at Molly until she was getting out of the car at the rink…


Don’t you wish you were still seven?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

If I could save time in a canning jar of tulips


During my last year of high school I met my husband.  I loved him instantly. 

Within a few months I changed all the big life decisions I had spent those teen years creating.  And truthfully though I was young and naive I didn’t care at all what anyone thought.  And I still don’t!  People were gentle and kind with their comments but I know many were kind of aghast at the situation known as Ken & KD.

Ken is crazy.  He is full speed and I have often thought it’s a good thing he was born when he was because nowadays they would say he was hyperactive.  When I look at what he has accomplished in his life I can only credit his zest and intensity for life.   The world needs more people like Ken.  He is the most selfless person I’ve ever met.  He saved me from myself, if that makes any sense.

His life isn’t about money or greed or who he knows.  It’s about faith and seeing beauty in the mundane.  It’s about his kids-big and small- and about how even the smallest things can make a person happy.   He is real.


This is how I like him best…after an afternoon nap, kind of scrub faced and hair askew. 


But I also like him like this…with a gaggle of kids about who love him as much as I do. 

Today is his birthday. 

It’s hard to buy him stuff, he likes stuff but it’s usually weird stuff we would never know he wanted.  It’s funny to me that he can be in uniform at a moments notice dealing with one issue or another but he is the kind of guy that looks ridiculous in the grocery store.  He pushes the cart aimlessly and will stop to look at something with interest. I remember once he bought a gigantic jar of tomato paste like he had great plans.  Maggie (above) and I usually do the shopping, when Ken comes with us we know it’s going to be…. fun(ny).

I remember early on in our relationship envisioning him “old”.  Time has passed so quickly, I just can’t believe it.  Sometimes I look at us together with our new wrinkles and varicose veins and it makes me laugh.  What is happening?!  We used to have cute pet names now he calls me lady and I call him fatty.  But the truth is I’m more love sick now for him than ever. 

And I can’t tell you why or how or what is or what isn’t.  But I can tell you faith and truth and love are part of each day.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

my thoughts and a few favorite things on blue gingham


Doesn’t it seem that as of late the whole world is full of drama? The storms in the south? The news from the Middle East?  And what about Steve Carrell leaving the Office?


Drama is nothing new to me- I have three teenagers after all.  But lately it seems the drama is unmatched and I’m quickly learning I don’t really like it.  Maybe after losing my much loved cat it has pushed my “I- think-I-can” emotion down to the bottom.   Which reminds me to say a very big thank you for your sweet comments about Peter.  He was 14 and will forever have a paw print on my heart.  Just writing that makes me tear up—see what a mess I am?!

Our own local drama is still fire danger.  We had a close call Friday with fire rolling onto our property.  A friend called in the afternoon saying he heard there was a fire on our road ( a tiny country road!) and just as my kids walked in the door I looked up and saw flames on the neighbors lot.  The winds were gusting at 50+ miles an hour. 

The fire was instant.  We are very lucky the winds blew from the south.   The kids and I loaded the cars and I gave my 13 year old impromptu driving lessons.  We hosed down our house and outbuildings and watched the fire trucks racing in. But no one told us to leave.  So we stayed and watched well into the night.  This is the neighbors landscaping shed burning at around 11:00.  


This is the land between our house and the neighbors.017


Their houses were spared as well.

At first I admit I was crazy with fear.  I was shaking so bad I couldn’t put things into bags.  But then this strange calmness took over and I can honestly say I became okay with the thought that our house was about to be burned.  Me the girl who loves stuff.

I knew my family would be okay and that we would be together.  That is the most beautiful thought in the world.  

It’s really surreal all this business…the fact that we are moving and actually closed on our house the morning of the fires.   (We are renting the house from the new owners until we leave in June.)

Saturday night storms came and it rained so hard.  It was lovely.  It hasn’t rained here in so long.  Have you ever seen Sarah Plain and Tall when Caleb puts the glass outside to measure the rain… only it never rains.  I have relived that movie a hundred times in my head.  Not just because of the drought but because of Sarah and how she misses the sea and loves her cat Seal.    I don’t mean to insult Texas  but I think I have been away from home too long.  I miss the ocean, my nephews are in college (!) and they think of us as those far away relatives.   Now that we are down to counting the weeks until we leave it is almost too much anticipation.  We decided months ago to move ourselves, we have done it before and it’s a little bit fun.  Fun?


Today is a better day, I am sure of it.  There’s lots of good stuff ahead.