Sunday, February 21, 2010

Chaos is just another day!

It has been 'one of those weeks' in a major way. Last weekend, my cell phone died. Not the battery, didn't drop it in the 'potty', it just flat out died. Stress. No phone four kids. Eerrrrr. Luckily my new one will be here Tuesday, although I doubt I will be able to use it 'correctly' for a few days after that! Kids were home Monday for President's Day, which I believe they should have been IN school to learn about the day, but what do I know?! Tuesday my little man had his big old 10 month check up. We went in healthy, came out with an ear infection, a new inhaler for possible asthma and a watchlist for reflux issues. Eerrrrr. Wednesday brought a school delay and a cancelled computer volunteer day, which allowed me some long needed time with my little man to help the healing process. Also, Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, so we spent the evening eating Tuna Noodle Casserole with Panko Bread Crumb topping and getting our little ash crosses on our foreheads. That was a great night. I love Lent and I hope to have some helpful posts over the next few weeks in regards to preparing for Easter, my FAVORITE holiday! Thursday was uneventful (I think) and Friday brought a sick sick sick four year old. Poor baby had a terrible cough and still isn't up to herself yet. Saturday brought the dreaded midterm report of my stepson, age 11, fifth grader. Hmmm. A 'D-' and a 'D' in Reading and Language Arts. An 'A-' in Math, with a note that he is not appling himself. EERRRRRR. The frustration. You see, we are the 'mean' parents. The ones that make sure the homework is not just done, but understood and engraved in your skull. Our lives revolve around homework/schoolwork/reading/vocabulary JUST for this one child. He STRUGGLES with this, but we forge on. Midway through the lecture, I told my hubby, let's just let him go. Let him succeed or fail on his own. Obviously we are not being heard, so let's see what he can do on his own. The worst that could happen is he will fail and have to repeat the grade. Is that so bad? So, we emailed the teachers our plan of attack and will wait to see where it leads. Any thoughts out there in Blogland? I would love to hear your thoughts and/or advice. Stepparenting is hard. Help is good.

On a lighter note, here are a few pictures of some things I have been working on. A few bibs to donate to our school auction and a simple bag to tote to church for the kids. I also included a sampling of some very cool and inexpensive fabrics I picked up this week at Joann's. Hope your week goes well. Take care and stay safe!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Day #2

Weeeee! I love snow days! This is wonderful! The kids and I haven't left the house since Monday night. Well, we played (outside) yesterday for a bit. I have gotten so much done too. The girls had mini pedicures `a la mommy, we baked cookies, baked a homemade loaf of bread and bread bowls, painted suncatchers.....hmmm and many other things which escape my mind right now.

On a personal note, I finally finished a booster seat for my 4 y/o. Our dining room chairs are made for extremely tall persons, which we are not, so I found a cute and easy pattern to make a booster for her. Here it is:

I am happy with it. It serves its purpose. This morning she got pancake syrup on it and since it is made of vinyl, it cleans up quick! I also finished my 7 y/o spring top. (the basis of the Easter dresses I am planning on making should I find the 'right' material) Here it is:
It turned out ok. I don't really like the way the material lays. Thus, the reason I will only make the dresses if I find the right fabric for them. I also cut out the pieces for a smallish 'tote' for my little man to carry his toys around, when he can carry his toys around. It has been so nice to be home. (**edit** I got the bag finished in just an hour or so! Had to share a pic!)

We have been playing the Wii a bit more too. We have Super Mario Bros. and my children believe me to be near goddess status. Ha! It seriously is THE only video game I can play. Plus it has been nearly 20 years since I last played it! Hope the times are happy in your home. Now, I have to go check on that laundry...some things never change!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Fun New Things

What a great Super Bowl to watch this year! I really didn't have a team I preferred to win, but I must say, I am very happy for the New Orleans Saints. Way to go guys, and way to keep your class in the process too. We had a little get together with our neighbors and in unison, celebrated my stepson's 11th birthday. I don't know if you have any step children, but if you do, it is a labor of love. My stepson is a unique young lad that I have had the pleasure of knowing since he was 16 months old. When we was a pumpkin, we got along great. But, as things have changed, he has grown, new babies come along, his parents have their issues, I feel at a loss most ofthe time he is with us. We have shared parenting with primary custody. Basically, we have him from Sunday to Sunday every other week. The primary just keeps him legal in our school district. In our state, at the age of 12, you have a say in which parent you would rather live with, if the change is of interest. I wonder what he will do. They say kids love disipline, but I guess we'll see!

I have taken on a new 'hobby' and I use the term VERY loosely! My friend over at So Not Donna Reed, has hooked me up with a wonderful lady on YouTube and I can say, my crocheting is going pretty well. How stressful it was the first billion times I watched and tried to follow along, but when it snapped.......aahhhhh.....the  fun began. Here is the first project I have started. A scarf for my little man. 
As I said, it is a project I am still working on and it is FAR from perfect! But I am learning and having fun.

On the cooking front, I whipped up a Soy-Orange Pork Loin the other night, with vegetable rice and steamed veggies. Luckily the kiddos and their Dad loved it. I had a bit left over and made a gravy with the shredded pork leftovers and served it over some oriental rice and vermicelli tonight. Just to see how he would do, I chopped a small bowl up for my little man, 9 months old. HE LOVED IT! In fact, I steamed some carrots for him as well and he ate all those too! Looks like another foodie for me, ha ha. 

Well, I hope everyone takes the step to try something new this year. I am having so much fun learning things I never thought I would be able to accomplish. Is there anything you want to try?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Trigger Thoughts

So I volunteer at my girls' school and have involvement all the students from K-8. The other day, we were working on a PowerPoint show and one of the girls was writing about how she feels she is being bullied by three girls in her class. So, toward the end of class, I decided to let the kids look at each others shows, if they wanted to share. Low and behold, the 'bully' watched the show of the 'bullied' girl. It was interesting to see how hurt the 'bully' looked. Like she couldn't imagine anyone would ever think of her that way. (I will stop here to say, this was a situation of gossipy 9 y/o trash talk, NOT physical abuse or malicious intent) So as they lined up and we waited for dismissal, I asked her what she thought of being called a 'bully'. She shrugged her shoulders and said "Whatever". I told both the girls involved that when I was in school, I picked on a few select people and I was picked on by a few select people. But somewhere along the way, we all realize we are all in this together and no one is always right, always wrong, stupid, ugly or any other 'label' we put on people as we move through life. The funny thing was, they walked out together. I hope it helps, but I know when you are 9, you know it all and adults suck. So, I guess I won't hold my breath!

So, while I was thinking of these girls today, I had wonderful memories of fourth grade. For me, my fourth grade was spent in two schools, as we moved in the middle of the year. I remember having so much fun, playing with my friends and just being a kid. I don't really remember picking on others, but I am sure I did. I remember transitioning from boys are gross to maybe they aren't so bad. I remember riding my bike EVERYWHERE and everyone knew my name. We didn't worry about being abducted. Passing notes in class, check yes or no, list your favorite people in order from 1 - 5, playing Nintendo until 4 in the morning. Oh it was grand.

Things have changed (obviously) and I now have a fifth grader. He doesn't tell me anything about school. It is a place to go and 'get it over with'. My second grader however, I can see the drama coming a mile away. Maybe it is a girls/boys difference. I dunno yet. All I know, is I have been listening to Bon Jovi on my iPod and singing into my hairbrush, trying to fight the urge to dig out some blue eyeshadow and Aqua Net. Now where did I put those?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Kicking it into Full Gear....well...kinda...

So, the next round of sickies have come and are on their way out...I hope. I have not had this many illnesses in my house, ever. I am really wondering if it is because of the insulating we had done? Although it was not too dusty/messy, it still did stir up a lot of stuff and maybe years of 'illnesses' were included in our 'dust'. Anyway, I hope to do better blogging and keep up better.

I spent most of last week doing some detail cleaning after the guys finished our house. We also have a friend couple that just moved into their new house they just built and I took supper to them a few days, in hopes of making at least their evening a little less stressful. I also took a Taco Pie to a dear friend whom helps me with my little guy. He really is a mama's boy and she is severely underpaid by me, but I try to make it up to her! I really enjoy taking meals to friends. It gives me such a warm and toasty feeling. Oh, and we had a bake sale for my second grader last week too, so mini Valentine cupcakes were made as well. It was such a fun week.

I am making progress on the tank top I started and have hopes of finishing it this week. I must say, no matter how many patterns I use and things I sew, I find some of the instructions extremely difficult! It shouldn't be harder to read them than to actually SEW the item!

I flipped my calanders today to kick off the new month. My step son's birthday is this Sunday...SUPER BOWL SUNDAY!!  And as he turns 11, I finally (think) I found an awesome gift he will love. It is killing me to wait to give it to him, but we must be patient. He is having a rough few weeks at school lately and I hope this helps.

My second grader is attending a mini cheer camp this week and has the game this Friday to cheer at. Mama couldn't be more proud or excited. Ahh the memories of high school cheerleading. (sigh)

Well, a small basket of laundry is staring at me right now, so I guess I should tend to it. Wonder if all the socks will match tonight!?