Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I'm having fun with this.....

I've started a food blog. Anytime I ask Hubby what he would like to eat, he says "food". So that is what I titled my blog. I had thought about writing down family recipes for a while & just never seem to get around to it. But now, I have this new project/hobby. Not only am I writing down the recipes I have stored in my brain, but I am also saving them somewhere that I can tell people to visit when they ask me "can I get this recipe?" I haven't been very good about sharing my recipes with people, not because I like to be secretive, but mostly because I don't tend to use written recipes for most stuff. I have had quite a few people compliment me on the things I make & have even won several church chili cookoffs with my Chili Verde. I'm going to be contributing to the Lots of Kids Large Family Cooking blog too, that should be fun.

Hubby tried to talk me into making an actual cookbook at one point, but I've worked on several of those as fundraisers for various kid projects in the past & although it was fun to compile all the recipes it was also a HUGE pain & never seemed to generate the revenue enough revenue to justify all the work it took.

I'm also enjoying all the different challenge themes. I discovered a new one today, it is Tackle it Tuesday. I don't have anything to post for it this week, but I joined the CLR challenge they have coming up & I'm hoping to tackle rearranging my bedroom in time to post it next Tuesday.
I need to get one of our digital cameras reliably working and remember to charge the batteries.....I LOVE to take pictures & everytime I write something I think about how great it would be to post a picture with it, but saddly it seems that lately I never seem to have the pictures I want when I need them.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

I'm still alive!!!

Wow, it's been a while since I've had time to write anything. I started out really well that first week, but as usually happens in my life, things got busy & I just didn't find the time.

So, what have I been up to? Well, Baby Daughter was sick with a cold & since she is such an adorable (& spoiled) kid, everyone else had to take their turn in sharing her cold. Hubby went back to work on Friday, not quite 100%, but definitely better. Nobody else missed any work or school, they just suffered through it.

Our 11 yr old vacuum died & I bought a new one. We are all really impressed by how much they have changed over the years. I'm not sure I'm going to like it not having a bag, but that does cut out the excuse of not being able to vacuum because we are out of bags. It has several cool features, there is an on-board self cleaning duster, it has a special tool for getting pet hair off the stairs & the furniture & as you can see it is very bright & cheery!!! It was very reasonably priced and in stock at my local WalMart. I don't think I could buy something like a vacuum without seeing it in person. The absolute BEST thing about it is that the kids all think it is cool & have been fighting over who gets to use it first. A friend told me that it is a sign I am getting old that I'm so excited about an appliance. Well, if that is true, I have been OLD for a while. I have a thing for appliances.
I've come up with my plan for this years Christmas presents & am feeling relieved to not have to stress about it anymore. I've even bought a few things already which is HUGE for me, I don't usually start until a week or two before Christmas & then make myself nuts buying everything & getting it wrapped.
There are several things that I've been wanting to write about, hopefully with Hubby back at work this coming week I will find the time to actually do it!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Over the last several days I've been thinking a lot about Forgiveness. On Sunday, the sermon at church revolved around it. We had the bible story about how we should not just forgive 7 times, but 77 times or 7 times 70 times (some number that is supposed to mean an infinite number of times was the interpretation). The new priest at our church has a 2 yr old & a 3 yr old & he told about how he & his wife have taught their daughters to always say they are sorry when they hurt each other & to forgive when someone hurts them & says sorry. This was something that really struck me.

Since moving to the South, I have discovered that people here say "sorry" or some other form of apology for just about everything they do. Really, I get soooo tired of having people tell me they are sorry all the time for things that didn't bother me in the first place. I guess it is one of those things that comes from them having been raised to be polite. I was not raised that way & I'm sure it is obvious way too often that I am a RUDE "not from around here" kind of person. I do not apologize for opening doors for others, I do not apologize for taking more than 2 rings to answer the phone at my own home, I do not apologize to the cashiers at the grocery for not bringing in my own cloth bags....there are tons of things I encounter others apologizing for on a daily basis & I often find myself feeling hostile to the chronic apologizers. My youngest son is a chronic apologizer, he also says "Hi, how are you?" everytime he sees you, even if it has only been 5 minutes since the last time he walked past you in the kitchen. I find myself telling him that either he has no REASON to be sorry, or (when there really is a reason & it is the multiple time today that he has done the very same thing & apologized for it) that he needs to STOP doing whatever it is...apologizing is not enough. But I can do this because he is my child, with other people who continually do the same annoying things & apologize only to do it AGAIN, I seem to have no recourse other than to stop being around them. Now, back on track, I find that maybe I am the one who isn't learning the lesson....maybe all the apologizing around me has been targeted at getting me to learn to offer forgiveness.

After the church service on Sunday, I heard several profound stories of forgiveness. The first was about a local pyscologist who's mother was murdered. He later wrote a book about how he forgave the person who killed his mother & how by forgiving him he was able to move forward in his own life. Everyone listening was touched by the story & I heard several mumblings of "I don't know if I could do that".....I think being able to forgive no matter how BIG the wrong is, really is what being a Christian is about. In July, my Oldest son overslept & didn't go to a performance a friend invited him to at his church.....the friend's father was killed when a gunman opened fire during that performance. The members of that church are still struggling with their losses, but many have found it in their hearts to forgive that man and have publicly opposed him facing the death penalty. My son has not reached a point of being able to forgive, but looking back I'm not sure forgiveness was ever one of the things Hubby or I taught our kids.

My friend Stacey who passed away on Friday had many unjust things done to her by people who she trusted. She often came to her friends with tales of the latest injustice & we were always outraged for her, often it seemed even more outraged than she was herself and while we (her friends) have held tightly to these grudges & have talked amongst ourselves about how much we would like the people who wronged her to face some ultimate karmic justice, Stacey found it in her huge heart to forgive them all. She is at peace now and the care of her children is entrusted to people who made choices that hurt Stacey, but hopefully those same people will be influenced for the good by having known and been loved by someone so caring & giving. I am searching my own soul today looking for a way to truly Forgive the injustices done to my friend & I feel like when I find the power within myself to offer that forgiveness I will truly be a better person. Thank you, Stacey!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Happy Birthday Granddaughter!!!

Wow!!! I thought my kids were growing up fast, but today my GRANDDAUGHTER is a whole year old!!! She is only 4 months younger than my Baby Daughter, but it just doesn't seem like she should be soooo OLD already. She walks and talks & does all kinds of TODDLER things, which really isn't fair since she is supposed to be a BABY.

Rest in Peace Stacey

Yesterday, something happened that I had dreaded for a very long time, something that I was hoping against hope would NOT happen. My friend Stacey lost her five year battle with brain cancer. She was an inspirational person. Her first battle with cancer was waged while she was pregnant with her 5th child, she stayed strong & fought with all her will, not just for her own life, but for her precious baby. That sweet baby is now a healthy, energetic 5 yr old. Stacey never gave up. She joked about the fact the Dr's had given her a very bleak prognosis. She defied their predictions & because of her strong faith continued on. At one time it appeared she had actually beaten the cancer, but as is so often the case, it came back. She went to college, hoping to one day become a Dr. She went on a mission trip in Mexico with a church group. She endured many adverse situations in her personal life with courage and grace. She was so strong and had fought so hard that when I heard she had been moved to Hospice, I hoped against all odds that she would once again rally and make another miraculous recovery, but sadly it was not to be this time. It makes me so sad to contemplate her dear children having to finish their childhoods without her. Stacey had many friends who loved her dearly and I am proud to be able to say I am one of them.

Friday, September 12, 2008


This is an old picture, but it was the only one I could find. It is college football time in our town. It will be a home game this week & the town is already going NUTS. The news is talking about game traffic. The game isn't until tomorrow, but the excitement has started. The team lost their first game, but from all the interviews I've seen in the past few days they think they are READY for this game.

We don't actually usually watch the game. Hubby listens to it on the radio from work & updates me about it when he calls home on his break or if it is a night game we listen to it in the background while we do other things. Second Son works in a popular restaurant that shows the game (and serves BEER), he will be busy at work tomorrow.

The radio will play Rocky Top a million times between now & the game tomorrow. No doubt the kids sang Rocky Top at school this morning after the pledge of allegiance. Oldest Daughter wore her ORANGE and white cheerleaders outfit to school today.....her teacher was hopeful that the entire class would be wearing something Orange today. I have my big ORANGE T magnet on the back side of my van. It's fun living in a college town.

Edited to add my Big Orange fans

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hubby and the Boys
All my kids, plus my granddaughter
I'm trying to figure out the picture posting options. These pictures are from May when our Second Son graduated from High School.

What day is it?

My life is total chaos....I seem to spend at least half of any day lately reminding myself what day it is. My Hubby has mid-week days off. This makes it so much harder for me to keep my days straight. During the Summer, when the kids are out of school, we treat his days off as if they were the "weekend" We sleep late, we go on local outings & we just generally enjoy being a family. But now that school has been back in session for four weeks, life has become hectic. There are no longer any days that could be classified as a "weekend".

Monday through Friday the middle kids have to be on the school bus by 6:50 am.....yes, it is starting to still be DARK outside at that time. Friday through Tuesday (weird combo I know) Hubby has to be taken to work to arrive by 8 am. Some Monday through Fridays, Oldest Son brings my adorable Granddaughter for me to watch....he is usually supposed to be at work by 11:30 am, but will arrive anywhere from 8 am to noon depending on what car situation he & his wife are currently having & whether he got out of the house at the time he planned. Second Son also has a screwy random schedule...IF he has to work the morning shift I have to take him to work by 10 am...some days he works both a morning and afternoon shift. His days off vary each week along with his schedule. He was supposed to be starting College on Tuesdays and Thursday, but has postponed until January in order to have the classes he really WANTS. On Sundays after I take Hubby to work, we have about 45 minutes to get ready to leave for church. Starting this week I will be an Assistant Sunday School Teacher. After Sunday School is Church, the middle kids are singing in the choir during the Church service when they are not acolyting, Second Daughter will be going to Jr Church by herself for the first time this year & Baby Daughter will be in the Nursery without her sister for the first time. Soooooo, this is my crazy mornings.

In the afternoon it just gets worse. On Tuesdays & Thursdays, Youngest Son has orchestra practice after school and has to be picked up by 3:45. On Wednesdays, Youngest Son & Oldest Daughter have choir rehearsal from 4:45 until 6 pm at church on the other side of town. Friday through Tuesday (yeah, those weird days again) Hubby has to be picked up from work at 5....we really need to get his car running. Any random day in there, Second Son might need a ride to work at 4....his car doesn't run either. Oldest Son or his Wife come for Granddaughter any time between 5:30 and 7 pm, depending on when they get off work, fortunately she works a normal Monday through Friday week, although her hours can be a bit odd some days. I still need to find Oldest Daughter a new Brownie troop that meets either after school or on one of our less hectic days.

Crazy Me is actually considering joining a Bible Study (for Adult interaction outside the house) and I did sign up to begin Catechesis of the Good Shepherd training the first Saturday of each month for the next TWO YEARS.

I've found it is best to make Dr appointments & such for early afternoon on Hubby's days off, usually by noon I am fairly certain what day it is & if I let Hubby know about the commitment he tries to remind me. So far this school year, the kids have made the bus every day, we haven't missed any choir practice & I've only forgotten to pick Hubby up from work once. I guess I could be doing worse.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I'm new to this blogging thing

Ok, so I've been thinking about starting a blog for a while. I'm not sure how often I will actually have time to write, but the idea of writing is appealing.

Lets begin with my choice of a title. My husband & I are at a stage in our life when many of our friends are becoming Empty Nesters....they had their first after us, but their youngest kids are either graduating high school this year or next. Our second son just graduated from high school in May....if we had stopped at two we would be very close to having an empty nest. However, we didn't stop. Our youngest is not quite 16 months and we haven't decided if she will be our last.