Monday, May 31, 2010

Racin' for the Win!

And the results are now in...

Branch (my baby pics "look alike!") Photobucket
Photobucket Blossom
Bump Photobucket
Photobucket Bud (Pops' baby pics "look alike!!")

All of the guesses were accurate (told you that it wouldn't be too challenging!!), so - I used to choose a random number...


I asked the random folks to choose one winner between the numbers 2 and 8 (Comment #1 and #9 didn't have an entry.) and it chose ...


#2!! WHO was the second commenter??


Well, well, well!! Yippeee, Yahoo! Please let me know if the mailing address I recently used, is the same address I should use to ship via UPS!

AND, NOW, because I want to bring smiles to your day and I am no longer feeling rushed to get my integers picked... I returned to and asked the random folks to pick one more winner!!


and they chose #8!! The eighth commenter was...


YEA!! Another package will arrive for you sometime... soon!?! Off to the sewing/crafting table this week, as I am hoping to send the prizes out before June 7th!

Now, I'm going to bed (Pops and I just finished watching "Crazy Heart" and "Facing the Giants")- hope you all have a wonderful Memorial Day! I plan to sleep in and then eat a DELICIOUS rib roast off the charcoal grill... OH, the salivation! What are your plans for the day?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Focus Pocus Friday: LUV


Spending a little time every week looking back through old photos has become a real treat for me. I hope that you can enjoy this magical trip back in time, too!

Our Wedding - May 29, 1999


Married 11 years ago, tomorrow! OH - what a happy, fun, loving, faith-filled marriage we enjoy! I won't leave you to believe that anything in life, not even our marriage, is perfect... there have been a few pebbles dotting the path we have trod together... but it is what we have together and I wouldn't change a thing. (Except for that one time I signed up for owning a beagle from the shelter - I'd FOR SURE take that back!)

Happy Anniversary, Pops!! (Don't be silly, you didn't like her, either.)


Over the Rainbow!!


We have been having so much rain lately! I have been enjoying having the windows open and listening to the pitter pat of the rain falling. This next week the forecast is calling for sunshine... so, I may have to say goodbye to rain for a while.

The kids were so excited to be able to see a "whole rainbow" the other day. With the mountains, it is rare that we see a whole bow. They really are curious about how to find that pot o' gold! Can you imagine trying to find the pot of gold on the side of one of these mountains!?!


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Craft Basket Wednesday: Baby Gift for New(ish) Mama


Last week, I only showed a "peek" of what kind of fabric I was working with... Now, I'll show you the finished project...

A "nappy bag" for my friend Regina, who had her baby girl back... the last day of March!

I had borrowed Ms. Regina's Amy Butler pattern quite a while back to make a diaper bag of my own and after using it and enjoying it more than I had anticipated, I decided that I would go ahead and make one for her once I knew if that babe was a girl or boy! So, I did have to wait a wee bit for the baby to arrive and choose a more gender specific fabric! Finding the time here and there pieced together to get this whole project compete was a challenge, but I am so excited at how it turned out!! I love the fabric and wish I had more of it to make another bag... although maybe in teal and brown so it isn't so girlie (but, I do love the pink... dern boys)!


I made a changing pad, as well... and didn't follow the instructions on the pattern, at all. I decided to do my own thing on this bit, as I wanted a tri-fold pad and, I like a wee bit of a pillow for that baby's little head. I also was not sold on using terry cloth for laying the baby's little dirty bum upon, so I used some of that rubberized stuff... I cannot for the life of me recall what it is actually called - but it is what the stores previously sold for lap pads before these new fuzzy things that they have now. They wipe up nicely, wash up spectacularly and the wet and semi-solid (sorry, ick, I know) messes won't leak through to the padding or the pretty exterior fabric - SCORE! So, Here's what I came up with for that...


Finally, I worked on the accessory bits. I kept the cell phone pocket and hoped that she didn't carry around one of those monster wide blackberry type phones, as that would not have fit. You have a nice small cell phone to slip in that pocket, right, Regina?? Anyway, then I worked on a little velcro key fob to help keep track of the keys. I tell ya what - those are some DEEP pockets, so having a bit of help in finding one's keys when the babe is fussing is a nice help! And, finally, I sewed a matching cup cozy for her drive-thru coffee (or tea, or cocoa or whatever...) so that it will all go together nicely! Hoping she enjoys! I just might have to make one of those changing pads for around here, too!


Go visit Amy and see what she or anyone else is up to and crafting these days!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

My Daybook, Entry #34

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Tuesday, May 25, 2010...

Outside my window... Overcast and brisk. The forecast says rain rain rain... who am I to complain? I live in OREGON!!!

I am thinking... about the kind of something that I could "whip up" for a prize for the winner of this little contest!!

I am thankful for... a hot cup of cocoa on a cool May day.

From the learning rooms... we are nearing the end of all of our current school books!! It is looking like 1st and 2nd grades will end by Memorial Day.

From the kitchen... my "big meal" plans
Tues: Spaghetti
Wed: Roast
Thurs: Salmon
Fri: Steaks
Sat: Breakfast
Sun: NY Strip Roast on the Grill - mmmm, YUM!
Mon: Chicken
I am wearing... a gray, sporty, tennis skort and a white v-neck t-shirt, bare feet and damp straight hair.

I am creating... treats for the kids' baseball team's game tomorrow. .. first I need to make up an idea! One child has a milk allergy... hmmmmmmmmmmm

I am going... back to the midwest sometime this summer. I AM. I just have to figure out how we will do it... Planes, Trains or Automobiles? If we fly, we need to rent a vehicle - that is a BIG vehicle that will seat all 6 of us. Did you know that it is PRICEY to rent a minivan or a full-sized SUV for a whole 10 days or so? WOW-zas! And when I say pricey, I am not being extreme enough, here. It was more than $1000! Yea. So, either I need to find the coupon of a lifetime or I need to re-evaluate my position on "NOPE, I do not want to drive across America with a baby." Have any of you taken a cross-country trip with a 6/7 month old?? How did it go? Did you tear your hair out and make your husband send you and the baby home on an airplane and pick you up at the other end!?!! I AM going to figure out how we are going to go... but, I was really really really not wanting to do that whole 5,000+ mile round trip drive, again this year!!

I am reading... my posts from June of last year about our drive out east.

I am hoping... warm sunshine... the forecast says sun and 70s this weekend.

I am hearing... dishwasher running, clothes clinking and clunking around in the dryer, washing machine is humming, Bark is tip tapping around the floor and crunching on her dog kibbles (she eats the first several mouthfuls in a separate place than her dog bowl... weird, I know.)

Around the house... piles of clean folded laundry in my newly rearranged living room!

One of my favorite things... Rearranging furniture!

A few plans for the rest of the week... Baseball games tonight and tomorrow, library time - just hoping for a calm week!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...

Photobucket Photobucket

Keeping busy being a "CornHusker" before enjoying a try of rice cereal!!

To read more daybooks or to join in the fun, head over to Peggy's.

Monday, May 24, 2010


Lately this marathon life I am running, has been feeling much more like a sprint!! I meant to post this last Friday as it was on my mind to compare all the kids' faces right around 5 to 6 months. Well, it is now Monday evening and I might get to this, yet!!

Do you know which picture is which treekid??

A Photobucket
B Photobucket
C Photobucket
D Photobucket

Let's see... I'll make it a contest! You have until next Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 2 p.m. CDT (Pops' and My 11th Wedding Anniversary!) to guess. I will pick a random entry with all pictures correctly identified over the weekend and will "whip up" a lovely surprise for the winner!! Good Luck!! (It isn't THAT hard - they all look soooooooo much like themselves!)

No fair guessing ... Geemah, Grandma Di, L3M2B, and Aunt JoJo!! You might have actually received all of these pictures in your "inbox" at one time or other!!! Well, I suppose that you could just email me a guess!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Gone Halvsies

Half Circle

Half a Chance


Half Cooked

Half Full

Half Inclined

Half Gallon

Half Pint

Half Past

Half Time

Half Year

That's it! My Bump is half a year old!

Craft Basket Wednesday: Just a Peek!


Here's just a fuzzy out of focus peek... I'll show it finished next week, I hope!!


Go visit Amy and see what she or anyone else is up to and crafting these days!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

My Daybook, Entry #33

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Tuesday, May 18, 2010...

Outside my window... It was beautiful today, but it is growing dark now and clouds have rolled in.

I am thinking... I have been awful busy trying to keep up around here and in the process, have forgotten this blog on the side table. YIKES! Back to it, I promise!!

I am thankful for... the business and hustle in my home due to having four very happy and healthy children running amok.

From the learning rooms... Our new math, "Teaching Textbooks," has arrived!! We will start up with that beginning in our summer session!!

From the kitchen... my "big meal" plans
Tues: Black Pepper Beef Stir-fry
Wed: Quesadillas
Thurs: somethin' girlie... the boys will be gone for Blue Knights
Fri: any ideas???
Sat: Breakfast
Sun: On the grill (I'd like to do kabobs! - for reals this week)
Mon: Burger
I am wearing... Black capri length pants with a bright pink top & bare feet

I am creating... not much, but I am GOING to!

I am going... to CREATE a plan for a schedule - Pops says that a schedule for the kids will help them stay on task better. I am crossing my fingers.

I am reading... I read the Sunday comics today. Does that count??

I am hoping... to get more sleep tonight than last night!

I am hearing... Tree Frogs croaking. The neighbor's noisy diesel pick-up truck revving its engine. Pops and the treekids having a before bed chat.

Around the house... I think I need to try bribes for tidiness.

One of my favorite things... Empty laundry baskets.

A few plans for the rest of the week... Baseball games tonight, Bud's Blue Knights club meeting, library time.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...


Bud has ALWAYS been full of hot air!!

To read more daybooks or to join in the fun, head over to Peggy's.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


I love having a zoom lens to be able to get in and snag this kind of shot!!!


I am missing Pops this morning... Hurry up, Friday night!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Daybook, Entry #32

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Wednesday, May 12, 2010...

Outside my window... Sunshine, blue skies, puffy cotton clouds. 72 degrees.

I am thinking... Two sets of adult hands are better than one!!

I am thankful for... Bud & Blossom's awesome assistant coach for baseball who stops by to pick them up for practice, game, pictures when I have Bump down for a nap and Pops isn't around to take them. I LOVE that lady!! :)

From the learning rooms... I am trying something "new." Things got all hairy last week and Bud got behind when he wasn't thorough in his work and I wasn't thorough in keeping my thumb on him until it was all completed. So, I got frustrated and out of my frustration this thought kept running around in my head... "It takes at least 21 days to form a good habit." Sometimes it take longer to break a bad habit and form a good one in its place. SO, we are working on school work EVERY day - seven days a week until it is a habit to get up, get our school work done first and then go about the rest of our day. So far... it is going well. By the time that we get to 28 days, we will be "done" with our year and we will move into our summer plan. I have to fully develop that...

From the kitchen... my "big meal" plans
Tues: we had steaks last night
Wed: pancakes or something fast after the baseball game
Thurs: away from home
Fri: Spaghetti
Sat: Pork Roast
Sun: On the grill (I'd like to do kabobs!)
Mon: It's a mystery for now!
I am wearing... Gray, again. But, it is prettier! The pants are athletic pants with a coral stripe down the leg and the top has darker gray and silver twists and swirls all over it.

I am creating... still working on my "surprise" stuff.

I am going... crazy and as my dad says, it's a short trip (this week anyway!)

I am reading... Back to "Child of Mine" by Ellyn Satter

I am hoping... to have a smooth rest of the week with Pops gone until late on Friday.

I am hearing... Alphabet Jungle - a Sesame Street title that Blossom is watching, Bump just starting to wake and coo, Bark is lapping up water and the big kids are at baseball for pictures - game to follow. We will head down there in just a few minutes.

Around the house... OH MY! Last week I thought we got the toys under control. It appears that the excitement of new things caused more chaos and I ended up being a "mean mom" and put nearly EVERYTHING away. Blossom is left with a teddy bear, a soft doll, an ariel barbie and two dress-up dresses that were hanging in her closet. It was a tearful night. But, she has been quite imaginative with her few things!

One of my favorite things... Umpqua Dairy Brownie Thunder Ice Cream. We CANNOT - I repeat, CAN NOT NOT NOT buy that again. It is just to blasted yummy.

A few plans for the rest of the week... Baseball pictures and game tonight, a trip south to the big city for errands and Bud's Blue Knights club meeting, library time, rearranging the furniture I hope!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...


The promise of a tasty treat had her trotting back down the driveway.
The allure of wandering is no longer stronger than a yummy morsel!

(And if you knew her from her early days
and her skeleton "look" you can now see that
the fat cover shows that the treat wins out over
the run about the neighborhood these days!)

To read more daybooks or to join in the fun, head over to Peggy's.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Big Baby

I guess I am just a great big baby. I don't want my big baby to be growing up so fast and he is. Growing, that is.


Can't he just find a brick to wear on his head and stay my baby forever? The one who likes to sit close, have chat about his latest book, rub my back, feet or arms or just "be" next to me... He is growing into a little man. He loves to try all the new growing up things and wants to be just like Pops. He craves doing anything with dad - even work - so long as it is with dad.


STOP!!! Just stop the ride, for a while... or at least make it go a little slower. Life is all going so fast and I miss all the things that he did when he was smaller and all the things that I see him starting to grow out of, already. My big ol' baby is growing far to fast...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

To all of my favorite mothers!!


May you find time to stop and smell the flowers, today...
even the weeds most beautiful ones brought to you by your children!!


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Open For Business!

At the top of the driveway...


A closer look at the work being done...


But, wait! Something else is needed.


And she is in such a hurry that she won't be still for a picture! What is she busy doing?


Starting her business! "'Branch's' Treat Stand"


Her first paying customer... Blossom!


Because we live on a dead end, the traffic was slow and she decided to add some more paint to the lemonade stand.


A few lemons... this was her "big" birthday present that she got to paint and do all the stuff to get it ready!


Here is one of our neighbors stopping by to have a cup of raspberry lemonade. She brought her dog and Branch had treats for dogs, too. Branch thought that she just thought of "everything," she said!!


And she was super proud of making some money and will be using it to purchase more supplies to have lemonade and perhaps cookies, too, next time!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Craft Basket Wednesday: Kids Painting


I will show what this is, tomorrow! But, for now, here is what we were working on. I can't yet show what else I have been working on... secrets, you know?!?!!!


Go visit Amy and see what she or anyone else is up to and crafting these days!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

My Daybook, Entry #31

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Tuesday, May 4, 2010...

Outside my window... The sun is going away for today... the clouds are coming in. It was in the upper 60s though today and we enjoyed it!

I am thinking... that I wish that there were more hours in the day that I had for some uninterrupted time to get things done - and not in the middle of the night!!

I am thankful for... Suave's newest shampoo and conditioner! A knock-off of a Salon Professional Aveda selection: Rosemary and Mint - LOVE IT!!

From the learning rooms... A general push and pull of trying to find where I can get my kids to be a bit more self-motivated!

From the kitchen... my "big meal" plans
Tues: Hamburgers and French Fries
Wed: Cinco de Mayo... shall we have tacos, fajitas, enchiladas or quesadillas?!?!!
Thurs: Chicken Stir-Fry
Fri: Pasta something or other
Sat: Breakfast (This is my favorite dinner!! There are lots of options and we mostly all like them all!)
Sun: Duck & Dumplings
Mon: CrockPot delight!
I am wearing... Jeans and a charcoal gray t-shirt with a bit of metal "bling"

I am creating... or, rather, I just created a "Woooo Hooo" sign that I taped up outside in front of the garage! Tonight was Bud and Branch's first baseball game of the season (they are on the same team - thank goodness for that!) and they both hit home-runs! So, I hung a congrats sign for them to come home to and I plan to "create" home run ice cream sundaes!

I am going... to have to take those big kids out to get cleats, now. The "rule" around here is that you wear your regular sneaks until you hit a home run and THEN and ONLY then are you rewarded with honest to goodness real baseball cleats to wear. Luckily, both kids hit it on the same game!

I am reading... I am pondering Jodi Piccoult's "Handle With Care." It is the book club selection here and I finished it in the week ... lots to ponder on that one. I am not sure what I think yet. I am still thinking it through. So, I am just reading whatever whenever, since I finished it the other day and I don't really want to get IN another book for a bit. I have a very hard time pacing myself and drown in my reading. It's a problem.

I am hoping... that Bump feels good SOON. He had a round of vaccinations this morning and is a lotta bit on the crabby side this evening. (Hence the reason I am not at the first baseball game of the season - he is napping, now, though!)

I am hearing... The washer is in spin cycle... spinning away, always seems to be running. Someone could prank call my house and ask if the washer is running and tell me I'd better go catch it just as well as a fridge. And if it weren't running, I would have to say, "No, but thanks! I need to chase it anyway so that it doesn't get to comfortable just sittin' there!" Oh, the joys of laundry!

Around the house... We have been working on the "toy situation" in our home. I could type out the list of toys in our house... sort of. By category, definitely. But there are A LOT in each type and it can cause a big problem with clean up time. For now, we have done the toy swap and have some stashed away for a swap out again later. But, this is not a great solution. I want a BIG ol' midwestern basement for them to have a play area on a remnant carpet, like I had as a kid! Take the toys and mess to the dungeon!!!

One of my favorite things... quiet. Peace and quiet to sit and BE.

A few plans for the rest of the week... Pediatrician office this morning, library tomorrow afternoon, baseball game tomorrow evening, baseball practice on Thursday afternoon, Friday?? I haven't looked that far!!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...

Morning Joy! Everyone here is fresh and cheerful.
Don't look behind the camera - She JUST woke up and doesn't "talk" in the morning.

To read more daybooks or to join in the fun, head over to Peggy's.


Sometimes ...


things really are good to the last drop!!