24 October 2008

Breitbach's Did It Again

Last Christmas Eve, a very popular local restaraunt burned down.  Breitbach's was the oldest running restaraunt in the state, if I remember correctly.  It has tons of history, including a neat mural on the wall in the bar area that was uncovered during a remodel process years ago.  When the place burned, the history went with it but people still wanted Breitbach's home style cooking, and atmosphere.  They rebuilt.  News this morning is that the new Breitbachs burned down early this morning. Can you believe it?  We hadn't been back since they re-opened.  Now I wonder if we'll have a chance to.  I hope Breitbach's survives and they can rebuild again.

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23 October 2008

Life Happens

A quick photo update:

Scott rubbing aloe vera lotion on his sun burned face. He came downstairs with it all over. It was too cute!
Bethany loves to go out in the shop with her grammy. She can be found sitting next to Grammy on a stool playing with "toys" while Grammy quilts. This and meal time are the only times you can find this child sitting still.
Daddy reads to Bethany just before she goes to bed.
Aunt Janie finally taking a picture of the tree with beautiful fall colors after talking about the tree for 5 days.
Great Gram, Aunt Janie and Scott go for a walk to the park.
I hate waking up to a dark sky and have a hard time dragging my butt out of bed when its dark. But the gorgeous sunrises I see as I head to work make it all a little better.
Wii weren't the only ones having fun with our new toy. Ryan's parents and grandparents could be found playing the Wii last Sunday at our house

Right after a nap is not a good time for Great Grandpa to hold Bethany... but a cookie might make all the difference.

22 October 2008

Way Behind in Life

I feel so behind at the moment. Since we stepped off the plane returning from California, life has been is fast forward it feels like. Our free weekends haven't been free and we've been going non stop during the week. Not that there's anyone to blame but myself. I have so much to do:
  1. Thank you's from vacation that have been in my purse since right after we got home. Some are done and just need to get into an envelope and find the mail box. Some are blank. And now that they've been in my purse for a few weeks and Bethany's little hands have found them, they're not in tip top shape. So, if you get a partially crumpled thank you, know that I'm better to send them that way so that they at least get sent. (with that said, I just handed out some of birthday thank you's from July that I found in my other bible that I apparently haven't used for several months.)
  2. I managed to partially clean Ryan's bathroom but it still needs a good scrub as does my own.
  3. Those dead flies in the window sills. I've kept up with the downstairs ones since I see those. The kids rooms though need some serious attention. As we continue to cool off outside, the flies are making way into my house somehow and dying in the window sills.
  4. We're running out of food at our house. I totally meant to bring the Once a Month Cookbook today to tweak their lists and make a list of the dishes I like best. Forgot the book so maybe I'll get that done tonight.
  5. Need to schedule my annual appointment. Should have done that in July. Thankfully Dr. Ryan gave me a 3 month extension but that's overdue now too. I called yesterday but can't get into her office for 6 weeks so now I need to call the other doc to see if he can get me in.
  6. Need to have our Mongolian student over but haven't got a hold of her... we're already 9 weeks into the semester and we've not had her over yet!
  7. Christmas is right around the corner and I need to start on calendars... eek!

Okay, that's enough of a list. I have gotten a few things done but there's lots to do around the house. Get out fall clothes, put away summer clothes, lose 10 pounds so I can fit into my fall clothes, mend some other clothes, figure out how to remodel that room, etc.

My inlaws were offerred a cruise with the sale of their house. They can apparently transfer it to us. Oh how I'd love that opportunity to take a cruise with Ryan and relax... it's going to be a crazy fall!

20 October 2008

Fireplace or Update a Room

I would like to think that some of our budget this month can go towards updating the carpeted room. But, after the chimney sweep guy left our house on Saturday, we learned that $350 of our budget was going to him instead. Yes, a little more than we expected but he also capped the chimney. I hope there's enough this month cause I just ordered some stuff for the kids at 0ldN@vy and a few books to share with some friends.

16 October 2008

Feeling a Little Offended

It's Boss' Day. Each year, our secretary takes care of getting our boss a little something. I remember last year being irritated that she buys something and tells us after the fact that we owe her money. It's usually 2 or 3 bucks a piece so its not a lot of cash but what irritates me is that she doesn't ask us ahead of time if we want to go in on a gift. Is it right to buy a gift and expect people to pay without asking?

This morning though was a little different. Our secretary is off today so I took it upon myself to make a card from the whole staff and buy him a big bag of his favorite candy. The secretary calls in and talks to one of the guys who tells her that I made a card and bought candy. She apparently didn't like what I'd done and asked him to go downtown and pick up a gift certificate and we can split the cost later. Now I'm irritated for two reasons: 1. Once again we'll be expected to chip in later, 2. My idea wasn't good enough.


14 October 2008

Random Thoughts

  • Hubby went back to work to check on a dog on IV fluids. I love when he's home.
  • Scott is ready for Cubbies tomorrow night and can tell you his verse but he just pooped in his undies... we've told him he can't go if he does that. I don't like keeping him from "church" for being naughty.
  • I miss my friend Cori. She's a college buddy and we don't talk much but we kept up via blogs. She's not blogging now.
  • It's time for my annual review at work. That always makes me think about how much I enjoy my job. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I don't.
  • I need to schedule an annual check up. I'm 3 1/2 months over due for that. Hate that appointment.
  • My grandma and aunt headed back home today. It's been a busy month with two weeks in CA and straight into two weeks of my family being at mom's and wanting to hang out there.
  • Thank you Lord for federal holidays!
  • Spent Saturday helping my inlaws with an artist show where they got to display, show off and sell some jewelry. He's amazingly talented with the projects he puts his hand to.

10 October 2008

Entertainment for Today

Had a spam email earlier. Didn't know it was spam. I only looked at the subject line and read:
"big peckers for sale"
I laughed out loud and proceeded to tell my co-worker about it. The email title wasn't so funny but it caught me off guard and my reaction was funny.

A few minutes later I hear said coworker:
so how much were they?

A few minutes later we're working with a guy who's a real piece of work. He's totally cocky. After the guy leaves, I comment to co-worker:
Right there was the big pecker.

Maybe it was one of those "you had to be there" moments. C, did I get the story right?

08 October 2008

Welcome to Our Home

Tomorrow night we host bible study at our house. This usually means that the night before is a cleaning frenzy or that Ryan is off at noon and can go home to clean and prepare food. Not this time. Not to say that we didn't do any cleaning, because we did, but it was minimal. I still haven't even vacuumed up all the dead bugs from our window sills (gotta love fall). So, what did I do last night?

After supper, I hurried Scott out the door to Cubbies and then went for a walk with my aunt, my grandma and Bethany. I left at 8pm to pick up Scott and as I got down the street, I realized that it was only 7pm. Man, that was a short walk! Instead of dropping his carseat off at the church so Ryan could bring Scott home, and going home to clean, I decided to stick around town. I stopped at my friend Vanessa's and we chatted for an hour. It was so good to have no agenda and just chat. At 8pm (it really was 8pm this time), I picked up Scott and headed home. While sitting on the toilet to poop (cause he has to do that in order to snuggle, works like a charm), I began cleaning the bathroom. Not because I wanted to clean, but because Scott started peeing while on the toilet and didn't bother to point that thing down. There was a rainbow stream across the bathroom, on the door, on the threshhold, on the wall oustide the bathroom and in the floor vent, not to mention all over the floor. Thanks Scott, like that's what I wanted to do tonight!
After finishing that task, I picked up the toy room (is that what it has become??? It was supposed to be a sitting room/library). Scott finally did his thing and proudly had to show everyone in the house and we headed upstairs. Put Boo-zilla into bed and then snuggled my little man. We read the same book as usual and like every night, he had to spell S-I-T-T-E-R each time we saw it in the book. Now that I was half asleep and not ready to clean anymore, we prayed in my bed before a quick teeth brushing and another prayer time in his bed and I tucked him in and was done with kiddos for the evening.
It would make sense that I'd go back downstairs and start cleaning since I'm having guests over for not only bible study but for supper. But no. Instead of cleaning I spent time with my kids and won't clean another thing before I go to bed.

Do you think there's a chance I'll wake up early and clean
that I'll leave work early to clean
that I'll welcome people into my very lived in home?

Let me know what you would do.


Talked to a girl in town tonight. She's struggling financially - single mom, recently lost her job. She shared that they've been getting food from the local food pantry because money is tight. Nothing wrong with that I thought. She continued that she gets $1000 a month and her rent is $400 and her car is $350. My immediate response was for her to get rid of the car and buy a junker. She shared her reasons why she couldn't get a car and at the end of the conversation, she didn't have a leg to stand on. She NEEDS to get rid of the payment that's killing her. HELLO!!!!

Why is is that so many people can't figure out simple math. Don't buy a big fancy car if you can't afford it. Which then makes me think, don't buy a big fancy house if you can't afford it, even if the bank wants to loan you the money.

Email to Renae

The following is part of an email that I sent to my friend, Renae, that I thought would be a good update to share on my blog:

I'm doing good.  Have a constant feeling of going a million directions and being overwhelmed.  In the week since I've been back, I've spent several hours helping my in-laws with some business stuff for an art thing they're doing this weekend.  And I'll be up there Friday night through Saturday night helping with the art show.  Meanwhile I've tried to catch up after being gone (still haven't cleaned the dead bugs off the wood floors upstairs) and make time for my aunt and grandma who are here visiting.  It has been difficult to juggle everything.  And the last few days when I should be spending my lunch break working on thank you's from our trip and reading and doing my bible study, I've been eating with the staff because its Rob's last days at the office. 
So, on my to do list: tonight I should hang out with family but also should be cleaning house since we host bible study tomorrow night (am not helping out with the youth group this year and instead am trying to spend more time with Bethany).  Should also do my bible study... eek.  Thursday is bible study night.  Friday night we head north to help Ryan's folks.  May be taking one of the international students to help us with the kids.  Sunday should hang out with family but its supposed to be nice so I'd like to work in the yard.  Its full of leaves, flower beds are full of weeds.  The garage needs cleaned out (or have it fall down like its slowly doing) so I can try to park my car in there when the snow flies.  Really need to change my bed sheets and clean my bathroom.  Want to start planning to totally re-do the carpeted room.  Am thinking of a rolling wall in there that will act as a divider from the front door area and give people a place to remove shoes, etc
Still thinking about adoption but feeling like I don't have time to do the paperwork so I probably don't have time to care for another child.  Maybe we need Scott to get a little more independent.  We're working on that with him.  He's picking out his own shirt and underwear, is going to the potty without help including un buttoning his pants, etc. 

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07 October 2008

Isn't this adorable!?!?

I love this picture for multiple reasons:
  1. Drew did not appreciate holding hands with Scott.
  2. In the background are two sets of parents looking on as their kids walk hand in hand.
  3. Ryan told me to quit trying to marry the two off already. Honestly I'm not. I just wanted them to stick together so they were easier to keep track of while at the zoo.
  4. They're the same age and so cute. Scott adores Drew. This trip, Scott talked about Luke almost as much as he talked about Drew!

RE: to Amy's comment

They're really cool. I saw a couple of them at Ashley's house and asked her about it before I started. They start ~$45 for a 12x12 with 20 pages. Each additional page is $1.50 I think. But that's not bad considering paying for a scrapbook, the paper, printing pictures, etc. The things she didn't like about it: you have to spell check each text box and she did it on a whim and would have left some pages out, and she didn't like the leather cover. The cool thing is that you can create it and let it sit there and make changes later if you decide you don't want a page and haven't ordered it yet. You can also wait till they have a sale to place your order. So, like right now they have a 30% off deal for the books and I'm hoping that I can get mine done while they still offer the sale otherwise I'll try to be patient and wait for another one.


Shutterfly... my new favorite thing.

I love to scrap book and have been saving for a new die cut tool. Shutterfly isn't perfect but I like the album product that you can make with it. I've started one for our vacation because I simply don't have time to do all the cutting, glueing, shopping, etc.

02 October 2008


I'm more tired today after ~7 hours of sleep than I was yesterday with 3 1/2 hours of sleep. I so should have taken an extra day off to recover.

This morning I had two children with colds, one of which who was very whiney. Coupled with my tiredness, it wasn't a good combination!

01 October 2008

Gas Prices

I was glad to see that gas prices were down, even in California. I was quite surprised that most the gas stations charged you $0.10 more per gallon if you used your credit card. If you paid with cash, it was cheaper. I didn't know if that meant you had to start handing them $20 bills or what.

In the financial course I took from Dave Ramsey, I learned that you should use your debit card as a credit card to protect you. Dave doesn't even know his PIN so I figured I could do the same. Our trip to CA was the first time that I wish I knew my PIN so I could pay less for gas (and maybe a few other times when I wanted cash back). I purchased gas the first time and after that Ryan used his debit card so we could get the cheaper rate.


Our morning started out normal: 15 minutes late to breakfast with some dear friends followed by leaving their house 15 minutes late to the airport. And since we were late, why not stop at the local chain coffee shop to say goodbye to another dear friend. (Nicole says I can't post this picture because its a horrible one of each of us: she just finished working her 4am-9am shift, I went to bed with wet hair and packed my stuff so I look horrid and Kristine wasn't prettied up for a picture either).

Leaving town about 20 minutes late, we weaved through traffic to get to the airport. The airport is one place I will not arrive late to. Anxious about being late, I returned the rental van while Kristine drove off with her car seats and Ryan and the kids sat on the sidewalk with all of the luggage. I ran through the airport to help Ryan get the luggage to the ticket counter to find out that a guy was already helping him. I quickly dug through my wallet to find $4 to tip the guy and quickly started to check in for our flight. A bit more drama unfolded when one of our bags was too heavy (by 5 lbs) and we had to shift things around. My anxiety continued to build as we made our way through the airport screening area where I had several bottle of juice, juice boxes and yogurt for the kids (which isn't exactly to their standard I think). Just as I was passing through the metal detector, a very nice lady pointed out that my keys were in my pocket. We can't have those setting off the detector, right? Only it wasn't that simple.

The keys in my pocket were from the rental van. I hadn't returned the keys and checked the van back in. Ahh, what was I thinking. I quickly grabbed up my new cute purse, told Ryan to go through with the kids while I ran in my socks (my shoes had already gone through the screening) to the rental car place. After returning the keys, I ran back to the screening place. And something else happened there. I wish I remember what it was but it had to do with Bethany and Scott being with Ryan. Who knows. By now I was sweating and feared being stinky. More anxiety. We made it to the gate with plenty of time to spare but there were a few minutes in there where things were pretty hectic! And that was the start of my 20-hour day!


and did I mention that I gained 5 lbs while on vacation?!?! Yeah, this morning I'm back to my post pregnant clothes and glad that I can breathe again and don't need to scrape my jeans away from my belly.

there were multiple pictures taken on vacation that I felt the need to delete because I look pregnant in them. I am NOT pregnant and would appreciate not looking that way. However, I did enjoy having a caramel frapp about every other day we were there.

Fun Memories to Write Down

On our "big plane" flight, the kids and I were seated in the first row and Ryan was seated in the last row. With a 3-hour layover, I was in no hurry to get off the plane so we waited for Ryan. Just before Ryan started moving up the aisle, the flight crew had Scott up front and using the intercom. Over the intercom we heard his still small voice "bye daddy, daddy? Daddy, hurry up!" It was precious. The captain came out and handed Scott and Bethany a set of wings which we pinned right on him.

As my dad was leaving the house the other day Scott told him: "drive safe, watch out for deer". Yes, we have that problem here in Northeast Iowa but there are no deer to be seen in Central California on the freeway so it was cute.

Ryan, what else did I want to write down?

We're HOME

It felt so good to sleep in our own bed last night!