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Entries from May 2010

Farmer's Market Day

So Saturday was pretty awesome.

Rob had to work, so I was expecting him to be gone all day. The kids woke me up around, oh, 10 AM, maybe? We had breakfast, and then we were relaxing for a little while before I planned to get started on laundry while they "cleaned" their rooms. But lo and behold, in walked Rob around 1030, finished for the day. Yay!


His annual uniform allowance came in last night, so he had to go back to base to buy all his uniform stuff. It sucks because he has a seabag inspection coming up, but never in the next three years will he use half the things he's required to have in his seabag. We could have used that money for other stuff, if it weren't for the inspection. He does plan to return a lot of the stuff afterward, though, so that might help.

And he surprised me by taking ALL three of the kids with him to base for his shopping trip, without complaining. He must have been in a jolly good mood for getting off earlier than planned, I suppose. Yay for me! I puttered, showered without having to scream around the shower curtain 30 bazillion times, "KNOCK IT OFF!!", and worked on laundry while they were gone. Just the quietude was pure luxury.


When they finally arrived home, some three hours later, we were off to the Farmer's Market to do our grocery shopping. What a fun trip, compared to the grocery store. Unfortunately there's no long receipt, at the end of which is a statement of mega coupon savings, but the knowledge that we're eating fresh, local and organic more than makes up for it. Our first stop was to see Uncle Chuck, the fishmonger. He is one cool dude; on that, Rob and I wholly agree. I try not to go on a weekend day, but that's when payday hit, so that's when we went - and he was insanely busy! We pulled his "menu" - a sheet with all his offerings and prices - outside to look over, and keep the kids out of his small shack, until there was a lull in business. When it was our turn, Sophia wanted to know what everything was, touch it, see it, smell it - and Uncle Chuck was entirely patient with her. Here he is showing her some large shrimp that the previous customer was coming back for after finishing their shopping.


I asked him if I could take pictures, and he was like, "Uh, sure, why?" I said, "Um, for my blog!" and he was all, "Oh. Okay, whatever!" and pulled all the kids in for a photo op. Very cool dude, right??


From his shack, we bought a package of crab cakes (note to Stephanie: If you didnt get my text, I asked Uncle Chuck about his preparation, and he'll be happy to custom-make them for you without the offending ingredients, so shoot me an email!), a huge bag of large shrimp, a gigantic haddock fillet, a couple dozen littleneck clams for Rob, and some ocean scallops for moi. Fortunately, we'd brought our coolers along, so there was no worry about leaving them in the car while we continued our shopping.  


I didn't get to take a picture of Michele or her lovely daughter, Erika, from Virginia Garden - the organic food mart at the Farmer's Market, but maybe next time. I think there are pictures of them somewhere on her site, if you care.  I knew I was going to way-overspend our grocery budget there, and I did, but I was able to get a LOT of stuff and use the 10% off coupon from their website this time. While I shopped, Rob took the kids out back to run around the field, and I think that was a big relief to Michele! I know it was for me... I had apologized to Uncle Chuck for my kids, and he was effusively nonplussed, if there can be such a thing, hugging me and telling me not to worry, "it's the only way kids learn how to behave!" He's right, of course, but I always feel like they are overwhelming for other people.


After we arrived home and brought everything in, I was left to sort it all out while Rob took Jack back to the base again, for a much-needed haircut. He was getting quite shaggy, and since I trimmed his bangs the other day, he looked like a major dork. Anyway, you'll see that later. Here's our beautiful bowl of some of the organic produce I bought: avocados, oranges, pears, kiwi, tomatoes, lemons... mmm. Rob remarked that if we had the money, he could eat that entire bowl of fruit every single day of his life. It did look quite good, but when he says stuff like that, I always feel bad that we can never quite satisfy his voracious appetite!


Sophia, who hadn't gotten to try a kiwi the other day when we stopped by Virginia Garden, opted to sample one now. Here's her first reaction. What do you think, does she like it?


I don't think so!! I think it was a bit more tart and tangy than she was expecting. Of course, it didn't help that she first bit right into it, peel and all!


But she soldiered on, and bravely went back for another piece.


I think now that she knew what to expect, the kiwi was much more Squish-friendly. Oh, "Squish" is my new nickname for her. I'm not sure she likes it; it might not stick.


In the end, she was quick to hand over more than half of her remaining kiwi to Chloë, who positively loves it, and steal some sips from my organic root beer, which I needn't really be drinking anyway.


Curls was happy to oblige. I think she would have eaten another five kiwi if I'd have let her!

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The boys came home shortly thereafter, and Jack insisted on having a kiwi, too. See how he has the whole handful of it, rather than leaving it on his plate? He always eats like that. Maybe he's afraid someone (like Soapy) is going to come along and swipe his food? It's a definite possibility, anyway...

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The kids went out to play in the leftover ice from the coolers, while I continued putting away food and tried to get some sort of dinner together. I tried snapping a picture of them splashing around inside the cooler, but they stopped as soon as I held up my camera. Rascals!

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I didn't really have a well-thought-out plan for dinner, so I kind of just put things on as I thought of them. Of course, there were Rob's littlenecks, which can't be frozen without losing their texture, so they had to be eaten right away. And since he's left his grill at work for at least three months now, if not way more (!!!), I had to cook them in the house. I just put a little water and a smidge of butter in a frying pan and heated them up until they popped. This always fascinates the kids and, I admit, I like it, too.

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While they cooked, I threw together a nice, organic salad. Curls insisted I photograph this beautiful tomato. She simply adores tomatoes, along with her father and, to a lesser extent, Squishy Soapy Sophia.

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Pop! The clams were ready. I called The Bob inside, from where he was tinkering on his truck and motorcycle. The man could tinker out there 'til the cows came home, I swear.

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Yup. It's a salad. I don't eat 'shrooms or tomatoes, so I nibbled a little at the lettuce (which was a bit bitter) and carrots (which were delightful). This salad was purely for Rob and Chloë. They had requested I add some sunflower seeds, but I forgot. Sorry, guys.

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Chloë surprised us by deciding to try one of her daddy's clams. Her reaction was hysterical!

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Hee hee hee. It's okay, Honey. I don't like 'em, either!

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Jack refused to touch any salad, but Sophia asked for some! She didn't like the lettuce so much, and I can't say I blame her. It really had a weird taste. She managed just fine on everything else, though.

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After that, I was in a mood to whip up some OG (organic) hummus. I'd picked up OG chickpeas, olive oil, lemons and garlic at the market, and I already had the tahini. The kids wanted to know why I was putting peanut butter in the hummus, even though they've seen me make it tons of times before. Then they all wanted to help crush the garlic. None was strong enough to do it alone, though!

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Rob - who is more muscular than this picture implies - had to step in and help. Jack was fussing about that, but he wasn't getting anywhere on his own!

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Chloë gave it the ol' college try, but she, too, needed assistance.

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The kids all wanted to use the hand-mixer to blend the hummus, but I did it myself this time. I don't know why; I guess I just wanted to hurry up and eat it! It was WAY too strong on garlic, since I'd let them all try to crush it in and put double the amount I normally would have, so I had to add another half a lemon's worth of juice. Ahh, that's better. 

Then we broke out the OG cheese and OG crackers, and I insisted the kids try some hummus before letting them have some without. None of them was impressed with it. Fine, more for me!

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We had devoured so much cheese, crackers & hummus, that no one wanted any of the chicken I made, by the time it came out of the oven. Rats and damn. I wanted it, but Oscar the Pouch can only hold so much, and I didn't want to barf. Again. So, we'll have it tomorrow, I shippose.

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I'd completely run out of flour during the past week of marathon bread-making, so I was glad to buy some OG bread flour today. Unfortunately, it needs to be refrigerated so it doesn't go (get?) rancid, so that's taking up too much space in the fridge right now, but it's worth it to have such fresh, wholesome bread. Chloë had requested some more sunflower seed bread, so that went into the baker first, with some OG honey and hemp hearts. I REALLY want to have some, but after way over-doing it on bread this past week, I'm abstaining. God, I love fresh bread, though. It's hard. I don't have very strong willpower, either, but the desire to see that scale move back down is going to have to be stronger.

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After our non-dinner, Jack insisted we watch a family movie, so we all settled down in the living room to wath Fly Me to the Moon on Netflix streaming. Chloë and I had seen it before at the theater, but she totally didn't remember it. It's cute, but I fell asleep about halfway through and didn't wake up 'til after midnight. Of course, everyone else was upstairs and sleeping by then, and now here I am, alone and wide awake. Kind of sucks; I was hoping to sleep through the night. Ah well, what else is new?

Oh yeah, the picture. The sunflower seed bread was done when I woke up, so I pulled that out and started another loaf. This time, banana bread. I normally make that in the mixer and throw it in the oven, but I saw that my new bread machine has a quickbread setting (and maybe they all do, who knows? Not I), so I thought I'd give it a whirl. I did beat up the bananas and eggs in my trusty KitchenAid first, though. Love that beast!

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I had picked up a couple packages of Spiru-tein protein shake mixes at Virginia Garden, since they weren't all that expensive and hey, I need the protein. Oh, my. Do not buy this, ever. WORST protein shake I've ever had, which is saying a lot! Maybe I made it wrong, since it said to add all sorts of honey and fresh fruit and stuff, but it is just nasty. I've managed to choke down about 4/5 of this, and I just don't think I can handle any more. Even after adding a kiwi and six packages of Splenda, it is The Nast. Blech. Ich. Yuck. PUKE.

So that's it for Saturday. I can't wait to see what Sunday brings!



Sunday Stealing: The Just Because Meme

That title doesn't sound very promising, does it? Oh, well, here we go. Visit Sunday Stealing if you're playing along!

1. Make a list of 5 things you can see without getting up.

My double-pointed knitting needles

The new laminator

My iPhone

My big ol' scrapbooking tote

A litterbox full of cat poop

2. How do you style your hair? How often do you cut it?

See the picture up there? That's how. I get it cut every other month or so. My hair does not grow fast.

3. What are you wearing now?

Shorts and a t-shirt, how 'bout you?

4. What's your occupation? Do you like it?

I'm a stay-at-home mom, and while it has its moments, I pretty much love it. I feel like I'm undeservedly living a life of luxury.

5. When was the last time that you took a nap? Was there a special reason?

I just woke up from one. What other reason could there be, aside from "I was tired"??

6. Who was the last person you hugged romantically?

Well, my husband, of course

8. What was the last full meal that you ate?

Uhh... define "full." This evening, I nibbled on a bite or two of organic, fair-trade chocolate; chicken; salad made with organic tomatoes, Romaine lettuce, mushrooms and carrots; and I whipped up some more hummus and enjoyed a wee bit of that with organic cheese and crackers. It was a smorgasbord of tapas, I guess. My children called it a "feast."

9. What was the last email that you received?

From the Virginia Homeschoolers Yahoo Group, about over-zealous superintendents requiring more from prospective home-schoolers than the law requires.

10. What one website do you always visit when you go online?

Besides email, that would be Facebook

11. What was the last significant thing you bought?

Food! We spent a buttload of money today at the Farmer's Market, between the organic shop and the fishmonger's shack, but we're going to be super-healthy, baby, yeah! (I don't know why I morphed into Austin Powers there at the end, sorry...)

12. What musical artist did you not get at first, but then became a fan?

It's usually the other way around. One that I thought was "too country" for me at first was Jewel, but now I simply adore her.

13. What do you think about before you go to bed last night?

I have no clue. Probably the amount of laundry I have still to fold...

14. What was the last CD you bought?

Do people still buy CDs? I don't know, but the last album I purchased for my iPhone/iPod was the soundtrack for The Princess and the Frog. Am I lame?

15. What is your favorite weather, and why? What's the weather like today?

Hot and sunny; it's just what I enjoy, and that's exactly what Saturday was like. I'm guessing it'll be more of the same on Sunday.

16. If you could have a special artistic talent, what would it be?

I would have an amazingly powerful, soulful voice. I can sing okay - I carry a tune, anyway - but my voice is devoid of strength. I'm good for a chorus, but I dream of being a lead.

17. Did you watch the Idol 9 finale? If yes, what are your thoughts?

Nope. No TV here.

18. What's something you'd like to say to someone right now?

I'd like to tell my husband that I'm proud of him, and that I appreciate everything he does for us - and for his country. I ♥ you, baby!!

19. Any special plans for this (holiday in the States) weekend?

We may go swimming tomorrow, but definitely Monday, now the pool is open. We have plans Sunday night, but I'll share about that after it happens, in case it doesn't go well!

20. Besides your current S/O, who was the last person whom you loved romantically?

That would be C, my best friend from college. Not really where I would've chosen to end this meme!


Operation Lamination


So much for not knowing why I'll need my new Scotch laminator!

I found this site last night, and I decided I'll be making some sort of alphabet strip for Sophia with the Britto letters we create. Chloë and Jack helped me start last night. We made the "A," "B," "C," and "J." Guess who made the "J"?

Romero Britto is just so cool, isn't he? Well, I don't know the guy, but I like his art, man.


We used it to laminate two of the letters and our homeschool ID cards, before we ran out of the two laminating pouches with which it came. Now I've gone and ordered bunches more pouches from Amazon with all the Swagbucks money I've been accumulating - for free! (That's also how I got the organic cereal in the previous post, too.) Love that site!


And speaking of Britto, lucky us! I was looking through his shop, and there are easy ways we can add to our Britto collection without breaking the bank. These salt and pepper shakers are only $15! Too cute, right?!


I'll definitely have to save up for this $35 "Deeply in Love" umbrella; it so closely resembles our Deep Night Romance giclée of his. I love it! 


Another "Deeply in Love" piece, this spoon rest of Britto's will be great to replace the one we just broke. It's only 13 bucks! 

Too bad we don't really have anywhere to hang this $40 "Deeply" windchime - I love them.


Of course, if money were no object, we'd probably love to add this "Fish Fun" to our collection. At $595, it's a steal - but not for us, not today.

Well, that was fun. If you adore Britto as much as we do, have a look at all the fun pieces in his home décor collection. I have a feeling that a few pieces will have new homes in our kitchen in the coming months!





We moms hate to see this sort of thing, don't we??

Rob came home from a short stint at work this morning to find that the kids had left their unfinished bowls of cereal on the table, so of course he told them to "take care of them."

Apparently, that meant dumping them - expensive organic Fruit-e-O's and all - into the soapy dish water.



It's Not Like I Didn't Know...


...but the bread, it's not my friend.

After all the homemade bread I put away this past week (and the apple-raisin cream cheese too, I'm sure), I gained FOUR POUNDS over last week! Four pounds!!! Do you know how much a person with a tiny stomach-pouch has to eat in order to gain four pounds in one week?!

SHAME. Shame on me. I hang my head.

Off to make a protein shake...


Saturday 9: Midnight Confessions


Link up with Crazy Sam if you're playing along today!

1. Have you ever had to confess something to a lover or friend?

Sure have, but as long as you're not asking me what it was, I'm not gonna tell ya!

2. How well do you handle rejection?

Not very well, actually. It impacts my self-esteem and I fret forever about it.

3. What makes you feel old?

When our oldest was a baby, almost 9 years ago, our young babysitter was going to see the re-released E.T. in the movie theater for the FIRST time; she wasn't alive when it originally came out. Stuff like that. Also, a little boy I babysat while I was in high school, who was a baby then, is now graduating from that same high school.

4. What makes you feel young?

Everything else. I could swear to you that I'm still in college, or at least college-aged! Sometimes I can't believe I'm married with kids - let alone have my driver's license.

5. What’s something you are old school about?

Hmm... Not a lot. I like to think of myself as kind of progressive. Oh! But we get our milk delivered in glass bottles now, right to our porch. Does that count?

6. What TV show's seasons would you buy on DVD? Tell us why it rocks.

I wouldn't buy a TV show on DVD, ever. That's so not forward-looking. I like to know what's coming next, not watch the same thing over and over again from the past. I'm not a big fan of re-runs at all, unless I missed them the first time.

7. If you could create your own TV channel, what would it be?

All crafts, all the time! Especially stuff with yarn and paper. Throw in stuff about eating organic - and, more importantly cooking organic - and I might sign up for cable TV again!

8. Where do you like to go for a day trip?

Somewhere new, that I've never been before.  If all else fails, though, take me to the water. Ocean, lake, it doesn't really matter. I just want to get wet!

9. Name some things that you still want to do in your life.

Water-ski. I'm dying to try it. Sing in public again. Haven't been able to do that since 5th grade. Visit Asia, Australia, Africa, South America... Learn to spin yarn. Get a dSLR and take some amazing pictures of my kids. Raise those kids up into truly happy people who get a kick out of doing good works.



Friday Fragments

Friday Fragments

Be sure and link up with Mrs. 4444 if you're fragmentin' today!

All three of my kids have now lost their new glasses. I think they got them about a month ago. So... awesome! Especially for Chloë, who is blind as a bat without them and has been having her SOL (standardized tests) at school for the past two weeks. Their favorite line, when we tell them to go look for them, is, "I don't know where they are!!!" Hello, that's what "LOOK FOR IT" means!


We continue with our pledge to buy locally, eat organically, and make our own for everything possible. I scored a new breadmaker off Freecycle, with the warning that the giver wasn't sure if it works. It does! (I also asked for a juicer and an ice cream maker; Hubs was quick to point out the irony, since we gave our bread maker and juicer away years ago when we first joined Freecycle...)


The kids and I have made at least half a dozen loaves since we got the machine, including regular white bread for sandwiches (they didn't have wheat flour the last time I picked some up), cinnamon raisin bread, and buttermilk cheese bread. All SOOO good - even the one I messed up on and forgot to start the machine until the next morning. Whoops!


Wednesday, our first weekly delivery from South Mountain Creamery arrived. They are an "almost local" dairy farm in southern Maryland (where's northern Maryland, 5 minutes from that??) and are the closest working dairy farm to our area, so that works. Virginia law requires sold milk to be pasteurized, so the only way we could get raw milk is by buying shares in a cow, which our budget prohibits at the moment. So this works for us. OMG, the milk is crazy delicious. I bought a bottle of skim for me, chocolate for a dinner treat, and five bottles of whole milk for my chugging kids. They're already well into their second bottle, so I fear I'll need to increase the weekly delivery!

I loved putting out the cooler full of ice on Tuesday night and peeking out my window all day Wednesday to see if the milkman was coming. It all felt so old-fashioned, in a good way. I love knowing my kids are getting healthy, fresh milk, with no preservatives and which comes from happy, grass-fed cows. When we get a chance, I plan to take a road trip up to South Mountain Farm, because I want the kids to be able to know exactly where their food comes from - something you can't exactly do with milk from the supermarket!

The delivery also included fresh-squeezed juice from Florida (not local, but really, how could it be?) and a half-pound each of SMC's salmon cream cheese (ick, for Rob) and apple-raisin cream cheese (for the kids and me). The latter is extraordinary, and paired with the cinnamon raisin bread we made, ho-leee cow! Chloë and I have been indulging in that snack far too much!


Bye-bye, Britto! Remember the Britto? If not, it was the artwork that Rob and I purchased during our European cruise almost 2 years ago, an original by Romero Britto, whom we now adore. If we had the money, we'd definitely have a nice little collection of his works, but the Deep Night Romance that we DO own speaks to us personally. 

Anyway, it's a giclée painting, and it's three-dimensional. Two of the 3D pieces fell from grace their original positions during transit, and the corner of the frame was damaged as well. It's taken us more than a year to break down and pull it off the wall (or I should say, have Steph's husband Tim pull it down for us), but Thursday, it was finally picked up by Park West to be repaired. There's a big, blank spot of wall over my desk right now, and I miss my little big ol' Britto dearly! Come back, giclée!

(BTW, if you go to Britto's site, linked above, check out that car he painted. Hello, I want it!)


I'm steadfastly refusing to frog the mis-knit sweater, even though both Steph and Gloria said I should. Why? Because I'm a stubborn ass like that. I don't like to work hard on something and then just undo it; I prefer to do as Tim Gunn famously says: "Make it work!" So that's what I'm doing. The button bands are on (the ripply one will be fixed with blocking) and close together when I'm wearing it. Next the collar, and lastly, the sleeves, which I'll make as long as possible with whatever yarn I have left. If I can't wear this sweater - which was originally intended for my 5yo Sophia, but now fits me, hehe - because it's kinda short, then I'll sell it or give it away to a particularly, um, chubby little girl. SOMEONE will fit this (&^%$^$ sweater!!


Check this out - I got this $37 Scotch laminator for FREE, with $13 worth of additional stuff, from Kmart! We've finished 3 weeks of mostly deschooling Jack, so I'm not exactly sure yet WHY I will need a laminator for home-schooling, but everyone says that I will. I had $50 in free gift cards (regular readers might remember the Hershey's Pieces candy promotion from Kmart a few months ago, which turned out to be a huge moneymaker for me) for Kmart, so the girls stopped by there Wednesday after dance classes, to see if they had one. They told me they didn't on the phone, but go figure, I found two on the shelf. SWEET. 

I also picked up two packages of legal-size file folders for our lapbooking projects and a dry erase marker and eraser set. Slowly but surely, our classroom-to-be is taking shape. Now if the Missouri Department of Revenue would get its act together and send us our tax refund, I could really get started!

I guess that's about it for me this week. Have a great weekend, everybody!


Aloha Friday


Visit Kailani for more Aloha Frida fun today!

My question for you this week is:

What's your favorite vegetable, and how do you like it prepared?

I have several faves, including corn, cucumbers, broccoli, and carrots... I like them cooked simply and plainly, best of all, though I like the carrots and cukes raw.

Your turn!


Quiz: Love Style

What's Your Love Style?

You are undoubtedly Water

Your element is Water: You are imaginative, dreamy, artistic, and highly intuitive.
Famous Waters: Cinderella, Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz.
You love: following your moods wherever they lead.
You crave: validation and protection.
If you're single: Find someone who appreciates your sensitivity. Don't waste time with anyone who shrugs off your emotions as craziness.
If you're in a relationship:
You know what your partner wants before he or she even asks. Don't overwhelm your mate when you feel worried or anxious.
Sex is: both emotional ecstasy and sensory pleasure.
If you love a Water: Give her imagination free rein. She wants to be understood, so listen.

Read more about
elemental love styles.

Read more about
elemental love styles.














(From Martha Stewart's Whole Living website - Swagbucks it!!)

Houston, We Have A Problem


Welp, I've just finished knitting the body of "Sophia's" sweater. It's been a long but fun and interesting knit. Looks all right, right?



Major problems!! Do you see what I see?

Everything was going along swimmingly - no mistakes, no problems with the yarn or pattern - until I got to the part of the pattern where I was supposed to divide the body for the armholes, separating the front from the back like you see here. 

At that point, I completely forgot that I was making the Size 6 directions, and for some unknown reason, I started following the directions for splitting it for a size 2!! And by the time I realized this, I was waaaay too far gone to frog it back to the point of my error.

Plus, it's friggin' huge. I mean, it will fit me and possibly Jack - or even Rob - together!

And, I kind of hate the colors. That's not a mistake, per se, but just one more thing not to love about this project.

I don't want to scrap it, though. I mean, I'm five skeins of not-cheap yarn into the sweater. Soo.. I'm not sure what to do. Knit on reallllly fat button bands and make myself a cardi? A really wide cardi? 

Bah. I think I will finish it and then toss it in the "live and learn" pile.


Monday Steals And Deals

We haven't done this in a while, but I spent some quality time Sunday with my coupons and deal blogs, and more time going over the deals this morning, so I thought I'd actually go out and see what I could get. I won't be doing as much couponing for now, for two main reasons: (1) We have a pretty good stockpile of food, toiletries and cleaning supplies now, so my stock-up price for these items is now quite low, and (2) We're trying to eat 100% fresh, local and organic, so the opportunties will be more rare. That being said, when there are great deals to be had (ie, I can get stuff for free or they are a moneymaker), I will still buy items that I can then turn around and donate to our church's food pantry. So here we go, in order of my shopping with Jack today:

Harris Teeter


For this shopping trip, I was late in the week, so I missed out on a LOT of out-of-stock freebies. There's still one more day in the sale, tomorrow, so I may try again. We'll see. For this trip, I was able to get two frozen pizzas (Mystic), a box of Puffs Plus Lotion tissues, a bag of Temptations cat treats, two Hershey's Extra Dark chocolate bars, a can of Fancy Feast Elegant Medleys cat food, a jar of Classico marinara sauce, and two bottles of Resolve Spray & Wash, for which the store was going to have to pay ME 44¢!!  I knew I was doing well, but I didn't think I was doing that well!  They couldn't pay me, of course, so I was forced to buy something cheap to put me back on the "owing" side of things. I snagged a bag of M&Ms, which I gave to Jack for a snack. Hardly organic, fresh or local, but I didn't want to hold up the line by running to the produce section for an apple or something. Next time, I'll come prepared with my 'filler' item!

I was going to donate the pizzas and the sauce to the food pantry, but Rob ate one of the pizzas tonight, so now I don't know. At least the sauce, though...

Next up:



At Target, I was able to get all of the above for free + overage, except for the wipes. For those, I was able to stack a 50¢ MQ with a $1 SQ to bring down the price considerably. Remember, for you newer couponers, to look at the travel-size bins when your coupons don't exclude those items!  You can get LOTS of freebies there, and it's a great way to try out new products or, of course, stock your travel bag.

You might be surprised to see the paper towels there, but like I've said before, my husband relies on them heavily. I hate to use disposables, so I avoid them like the plague, but I haven't been able to convince him to do so just yet, and use towels and rags more. As for the Carefree, they'll go into the donation bag for the battered women's shelter, along with a package of diapers I got for free from Rite-Aid a while back, some of my grown-out clothes (and the kids'), and ... various and sundry other things I've been able to get for free or super cheap. It's a painless way to give.


My Target order wasn't very cheap, though, because I picked up some non-deal items including two packs of AA batteries and these dry-erase boards I found in the $1 section. I plan to make lots of use of dry-erase boards when we're home-schooling, and while these aren't exactly what I had in mind, for a buck they'll be good to take along in the car or something less "schooly."


I also bought this huge cooler, since we are now signed up for a dairy delivery service through South Mountain Creamery, the semi-local dairy farm in Maryland that has a shop set up at our Farmer's Market. It's a little alarming how much the milk alone is going to cost, the way my kids chugged down the one bottle I bought at the FM, but maybe after they get used to the exceeding deliciousness of this fresh milk, they won't be so glug-gluggy about it? Anyway, our delivery day will be on Wednesdays, anytime from 2 AM on, so I need to put a cooler full of ice out on the porch for the milk, butter, cheese, etc. that we'll be getting. I can't wait, I'm so excited. It's just so quaint!


We don't have a lot of room in our freezers to make ice for the milk cooler, so I picked up these packs for two bucks apiece. We'll need more than that, but this will have to do for this week. We can just pop them in the freezer on Tuesday and not take up all that room the rest of the week. And that's it for Target.


Whoops, it would appear that I forgot to take a picture of this trip! So I'll just tell ya, since it was a small one:

For just 69¢ + tax, I was able to get 2 small boxes of Wheat Thins ($2 regularly, for donating to the food pantry), 2 bottles of Gillette body wash for Rob (normally $5 apiece), and 2 packages of Arm & Hammer 2-in-1 dryer cloths ($4.69) each. After sale prices, coupons and ECBs, I paid just $1.37 for the lot, AND I came home with $8 in ECBs for nex time, so this trip was a big moneymaker!


The great part of taking Jack along on the shopping trips now is that it affords plenty of opportunity to talk more about eating organic foods. His self-appointed task today was to see where he could find the word "organic" and where, sadly, he coudn't (not on Oreos, pretzel sticks or potato chips).  He didn't understand why, at first, he couldn't eat the free cookies at the front of Harris Teeter, or why everything has to be organic, but when I pointed out all the delicious things in the store that WERE organic (and HT carries a lot of these products, yay), he perked up and looked excited to try them. This isn't going to be easy for everyone all of the time, but it's definitely worth it, IMHO. I just can't WAIT to get our garden started and wish we had the money to do it NOW!!

Thanks to Crystal at The Thrifty Mama, Tara at Deal Seeking Mom, and Collin at Hip 2 Save for helping me out with a lot of these great deals!


The Continuing Saga Of Jack


So as we went about our day today (Monday), I kept studying Jack's little face. It looked a little 'off' to me; something just wasn't right. I don't know if you can tell in this picture, but it finally dawned on me that the right cheek was swollen. I asked him if it hurt, and he said it did. (Why can't he tell me these things without my asking? Why suffer in silence?) Did he bang his face? Did his sister kick him? He said no, that it hurt where he had his cavities filled a couple of months ago.

That didn't really make sense to me, so I asked Rob to have a look in there. Apparently the cheek was swollen around the teeth that were affected, so I decided to call the dentist. They wanted him to come in immediately.

I rushed him right over to Dr. C.'s office, where he refused to be seen without me. Indeed, he kept worming his way up into my arms, reminding me very much of the little bunny rabbit he was while still in the womb. He is definitely the most snuggly of the three kids, and he's even more so when he's hurt or scared. So I had to put down my knitting and go in with him into the "scared kids room," where they sequester the little ones so that they don't alarm the rest of the patients.

Anyway, they took an x-ray or five and then Dr. C. came in to examine my boy. Jack didn't like that very much; he squeezed my hand the entire time, wincing and hollering on occasion. I could do nothing but stroke his skinny little thigh and speak soothingly to him.

Afterward, Jack jumped into my arms and kept begging me to take him home, while I tried to carry on an explanatory conversation with Dr. C. There wasn't much in the way of exposition, though, as the cause of the swelling was pretty much "I'm not sure... yet."  He gave me an Rx for antibiotics and told me to bring him back in 10 days, so he can see what happens after that treatment. It might be an abscess, it might be related to the hearing loss of the last two weeks, he might have bitten the inside of his cheek or, yes, he might have taken a wallop from his younger sister!

If the antibiotics do all the work and the swelling and pain are gone in 10 days, he said he'll pretty much conclude that it wasn't a tooth problem. On the other hand, if they are still there, he'll conclude the opposite and explore further to decide what the treatment is. If the swelling gets radically worse over the next couple of days, I'm to bring him back in immediately.

So that's about it right now. But poor kid, huh? One damn thing after another. In the meantime, I'm setting up a payment plan to get the rest of his (six cavity-ridden) teeth taken care of, because it's time. I've set up a big chunk of money for that in the budget, but it's still not enough to get it taken care of as quickly as it needs to be done, so we're fortunate that they're going to work with us on that.



Sunday Stealing: The Voice Post Meme

Link up with Bud if you're playing along today!

1) What's your middle name?

Ann. I hate it.

2) How old are you?


3) Where are you from? Are you living there right now?

I'm from New York. I live in Virginia now, by way of South Carolina, Florida, and Guam.

4) Is it cold where you are?

Nope, not right now. It's hot, and our AC ain't workin' right, as usual.

5) What's the time?


6) What are you wearing?


7) What was the last thing you listened to?

Right now I'm listening to Chloë "singing" the books that she's reading aloud, downstairs in the living room.

8) What was the last thing you ate?

I ate about five bites of the strawberry cream pie that Jack and I made yesterday. Shh, I'm not supposed to touch that!

9) What was the last thing you watched on TV?

I have no clue. I haven't watched TV since, like, January. It was probably The Big Bang Theory, though.

10) What's your favorite tv show? Why?

See numbah nine.

11) Quick! Find a book, or something with text on it! Flip to a random page and post the second paragraph's first sentence.

"But they didn't worry about becoming reacquainted with American TV."

12) What was the last movie you saw? How was it?

Date Night, with Steve Carrell and Tina Fey. Hilarious!

13) Do YOU think you have an accent? Where in your country do people speak with strong accents?

I have a pretty generic North-Eastern USA accent, although sometimes the NYC comes out of me (and I only lived there 'til I was six), and I say things like "dawg" and "wawk" instead of "dog" and "walk." Sometimes the Central NY accent comes out (lived there 'til I was 17), and I speak with a really flat 'a'. People in this country have strong accents all around. Boston, NYC, Southern, Midwestern, Cuban, etc. Accents fascinate me; I love them.


Merrily We Roll Along


On Thursday afternoon, I took Jack back to see Dr. A (whose name you can plainly see there on his uniform) to have his ears checked again. And yes, Doc is approximately 14 years old. I called him Doogie once or twice before, to his amusement.


Doc could still see bubbles of fluid in both of Jack's ears, which is why I'm surprised and happy to tell you that as of that very morning, Jack could hear clearly again! He didn't tell me this himself; I 'tested' him as I do/did every morning, and when I whispered his name from out of sight, he answered me! It was a joyous discovery. When I questioned him about his hearing, he seemed delighted to report that everything sounded normal again. Phew! And without a milligram of medication!


Jack didn't particularly like the exam... poor babe!


At that point, Jack commandeered my camera, so the next couple of shots are from him. 

This was probably the last time we will meet with Dr. A., because he and his family (wife and two kids) are moving to Italy. Such is life when you go to a military clinic: you get attached to your provider, develop a rapport over a year or three, and then either they or you move on to the next station, and you have to start all over again.

It's the second time since we've been here that I'm really sad to say good-bye to a great doctor. The first time was the doc we had when Jack was first born. Both were 'great' in that they took their time with the patients AND the parents, listened to what we had to say, and included our input in the treatment plans. Neither made me feel "lesser-than," because I don't happen to possess a medical degree. I appreciate that immensely.


I often make this face when one of the kids takes my picture. I don't know why; it's just a habit. And I hate having my picture taken from down below. My friend E taught me long ago that it's better to have your photo taken from slightly above; the result is more flattering. So when I don't like the angle, I make a face!

I look skinny though, huh?! Hee. This is Rob's Harley shirt that I'm wearing! And look, it's not supah-dupah tight, either! (My husband is a VERY thin man, so it's exciting to be able to wear his clothes!)


Jack is always curious about the things in the doctor's office, so it was no surprise when he pulled out the stirrups. After he lay down like this, I asked Doc to perform his Pap Smear. Doc snorted and says he avoids doing those at all costs!



Somewhere between the doctor visit and the following morning, my new camera got jacked up. Just the lens cover. Half of it won't open, and the other half won't shut! Awesome. I think I need to add a fund for repairing my old camera to the budget, somewhere, somehow. This new one is just a piece of crap; I hate it so.

Anyway, here's Jack eating a batch of scrambled eggs that HE made from start to finish, next to the plate of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies (from another mix that he found in the stockpile bin) that HE mixed, and near to the bowl of being-prepared pie crust that HE helped to measure and mix. He was a very busy boy in the kitchen on Friday, and I do declare that cooking and baking are now one of his favorite things to do. I can tell he takes pride in the results, too!


Of course, he had to help roll out the pie crust. That's always the kids' favorite job to do, isn't it? I showed him how to carefully wrap the dough around the rollilng pin and lay it out in the pie pan, to avoid breaking it. He did a perfect job!


Then he fluted the ege of the crust, after I showed him how to do it. He did the whole rest of the crust without help.


He did a nice job, don't you think?

I showed him how to pierce the crust with a fork to keep it from bubbling up, and he had a good time with that. See how he concentrates? I love his devotion to doing the job right.


He insisted he wanted a cup of coffee after that! The boy does like coffee... so I slipped him the decaf and brewed him up a cup, with sugar and cream. He drank two sips and decided he didn't like it. I'd have drunk it, but I can't have sugar, so it went to waste. *le sigh*

After a while, it was time to get the girls off the bus. We had to rush Jack right out to Chesapeake for a Cub Scout friend's birthday party after that, at a popular bouncy house place. I'd lined up some errands to run so that the girls wouldn't have to sit there and watch him having fun, because I didn't have a spare $16 to let them play, too. Sophia was really disappointed, so I promised her I'd take her sometime this summer.

After dropping Jacky off, we stopped at the FedEx shop so I could ship a package. It didn't cost me anything; it was for a mystery shopping project I'd done the week before. Chloë waited in the car and read her book; Sophia came inside with me so she could use the potty. I've been pricing papers, just to know what things cost in case I need them for home-schooling, so I was surprised when they told me that theirs cost $10 a ream! Uh, no.

Then we stopped over at Babies 'R' Us, because I knew they carried the Snikiddy brand of snacks, for which I had three "Free Product" coupons. Snikiddy is all-natural but not organic; I decided that in this case, it was close enough for me. "Natural" doesn't really mean anything, so I did my research on the company and decided it was okay to consume. But while we were at BRU, I was thrilled to find a wonderful array of organic foods and drinks at reasonable prices. I'd love to buy all our organic goods at the shop at the Farmer's Market, but she's very expensive, so I'm having to find deals where I can. The emphasis is still going to be on buying local, though.

Our last stop was at the TAPS near BRU, to see if they had the Daisy Leader book. Our local store didn't have it, so I was chagrined to find they were out of it at this one, too. Tha hell?! How am I supposed to know what to do if I don't have a book? I NEED my book. We spent another few minutes looking around at all the cool stuff, but again, I didn't want to spend any money that I didn't have, so we bought nothing. My creative juices really get flowing in a store like that, though!

Unfortunately, all these errands only took an hour, so we still had to go back and sit for another hour at the birthday party site. They had some toys in the waiting area, so that kept the girls busy for 20 minutes while I was able to do some knitting. I spent a quarter on a bouncy ball for them to roll around to each other, when they tired of the toys and limited books available. After that, it was all go-go-go, because every time I looked away for a second, Sophia had shucked her shoes and was in one of the bouncy structures!! Illegally. Inwardly, I was laughing, but of course I couldn't show that I was amused by her antics, or she'd take that as acceptance. So I kept the stern look on my face as I dragged her out and back to the waiting room, hating all the while that I didn't have that spare $16.

One time, Jack had climbed halfway up the highest structure and would neither go up nor down, so all the boys came rushing over to get me. An older boy, the birthday kid's older brother, had tried to rescue him, but he wanted Mama only. I tore over there and shoved his butt up to the top, and then we slid down together. I completely understand his reluctance; I am the same way. When we slid down the steep slide, I got that sick feeling in my stomach that thrills some people (Sophia-types like my sister, Stacey) but which I don't enjoy at all.

And of course, when I returned, Sophia was nowhere to be found... until I looked in a corner of the big warehouse, where she was happily bouncing away with a new friend. She is such a stinker!


After the bouncy party was over, we went back to the Farmer's Market for some supplies for dinner. I had promised a celebratory dinner for Rob, for getting his motorcycle license, but we still hadn't done that yet. I found one restaurant in the area that was reported to be "organic," Crocs at the beach, but when I called them, it turned out they only had "some produce" that was actually organic - not their whole menu. Suck. (Attention, entrepreneurs! I see a niche needing to be filled...) Jack had wanted to make pizza, so we decided to make that for Daddy's dinner, instead.

The stop at the organic market was meant just for some organic sauce for the pizza(s), but the kids talked me into some fresh fruit, including Chloë and Jack's kiwis, above. I tried a slice; it was definitely the most delicious kiwi I'd ever tasted! I also got some organic bananas from Ecuador, which just smell amazing, for more smoothies. Or something, I don't know. Oh, and a package of goat cheese for one of the pizzas, since we don't particularly care for Organic Valley's mozzarella cheese. (It tastes very dry, like cheddar. Which is fine, if you're expecting cheddar, but not if you're expecting traditional mozz. I'll just have to learn to make my own!)


We also stopped at the Creamery I'd mentioned in a previous post, to get some ice cream and that fresh cream top milk. Anything to fatten up my skinnies!  The milk is already gone; it was SO good. The ice cream was excellent, too, but we really didn't care for the mint chips in that flavor, so we'll probably not buy that flavor again. The strawberry, though... mmmmmm! It all tasted so good, and since this working Maryland dairy farm is the apparently the closest such one to this area, they consider themselves to be "local." In fact, earlier this morning, I signed up for their weekly delivery service, for milk, cheese, and such. Not their eggs; though; I'll continue to get those from Polyface Farms at the organic store. 

(Have I mentioned Polyface? If not, look it up - it's Joel Salatin's family farm. He's the guy Rob and I love from Food, Inc., and he's going to be giving two talks at the Homeschool Convention in a couple of weeks. I'm going to meet him!!!!)


By the time we got home and got the kitchen cleaned up so I could start dinner, it was past 8 o'clock, and Jack had no interest in helping me make the pizza. So I made it myself: organic dough, sauce and goat cheese - doesn't it look SO good? And it was. Especially after I re-cooked it; the dough was raw when I first served it. Oops. Jack and Sophie didn't care for the goat cheese, so Chloë ate theirs. I adore goat cheese, though. Yum!


For dessert, I pulled out the pie Jack and I had made earlier in the day. It's got a mostly-organic crust, with the fresh-picked strawberries on top. The cream filling is made of organic eggs, yogurt, and cream cheese, plus sugar and a little bit of Cool Whip. I had a little taste, and it was SO yummy. I wish I could have dove in, but I'd really have made myself sick.


Our neighbors to the right came home when I ran out to the car for something, so I mentioned that Jack had made a special strawberry pie, and would they like to try it? Of course they would, so I served some up for thme and brought it over. I made her promise to tell me what she thought of it, even if it wasn't good, because I can't eat it and don't want to make it again if it's yucky!

In the mail yesterday, I'd gotten a new game for the Wii, "Just Dance," along with a cursive writing workbook for Chloë. I paid $1.33 for both, after using my Swagbucks money for the rest! The Wii game turned out to be SO much fun - and a great workout! The kids and I took turns doing dances, and I danced along behind them when it wasn't my turn. I was sweating up a storm and feeling great.


The kids' dancing was so funny! I'm sure mine was as well, but of course I have no pictures of that. And I wouldn't show you if I did!


Poor Jack. He has inherited his father's dance skill - or lack thereof - but he sure tried!


Rob sat there like a bump on a log the whole time, refusing to play with us. He wouldn't even dance once! Butthead. :P


No, she's not drinking a beer - it's an organic root beer! Delicious. (I am loving this organic stuff; can you tell?!) But look at her feet! This kid is so bendy and flexible. She amazes me! I think it will be a good fit when she tries gymnastics again later this year. 

We danced well into the night, past 2300, and then I tried to go for a run around our lake. I got about a third of the way along when I just collapsed, unable to breathe. (It was embarrassing, because a man was fishing right there!) I tried to catch my breath so I could start running again, but I just couldn't... and I ended up throwing up violently. It was very upsetting. I'll have to take it more slowly... but I'm ready to fly like the wind!

On a positive ending note, I've lost 4 lbs since Thursday! I'm now well into my fabulous 50s - as in, I'm at 157.3 lbs! Yay!! Less than 7½ lbs until I reach my doctor's goal!!


Saturday 9: Upside Down


Click here to link up with Samantha if you're playing along today!

1. When was the last time that you felt your world got turned upside down?

In February, 2009. Hubs and I were having some trouble, but we're all right again now, thank God.

2. Should the United States do more to help its own citizens before helping people in other countries?

I don't claim to have the answers about that sort of thing. Or any sort of thing.

3. What was something you memorized for school and still can recall?

I don't know, my times tables? But I did memorize something that my grandfather taught me:

"One bright morning in the middle of the night,

Two dead boys got up to fight.

Back to back, they faced each other,

drew their swords and shot each other.

A deaf policeman heard the noise

And came to kill those two dead boys."

I'll probably remember that poem forever!

4. With what types of people do you tend to associate?

I'm friends with all sorts of people, but the ones I like the most have the same sort of intellectual humor as I have.

5. Besides blogging what is the last creative thing that you've done?

Knitting. I knitted off and on all day today.

6. In nature, what outdoor activities do you enjoy the most?

I like anything, everything. Whatever doesn't involve killing or hurting another creature.

7. When was the last time that you had a great belly laugh?

Watching the kids dance along with Wii "Just Dance" tonight. So funny! (I'm sure I was a hoot, too!)

8. What kind of fashion-sense attracts you?

Skater punk, that sort of thing

9. What traits in others turn you off?

Arrogance. Snobbery. Conceit. I can't STAND people who think they are better than others, too good for most people. It really pisses me off!


Aloha Friday


Link up with Kailani if you're playing along today!

My question for you this week is:

Do you garden? If so, can you share a good gardening tip with me?

I have a black thumb, but we're going to attempt a veggie garden this summer. I've gotten 14 varieties that Martha (yes, that one) promises WILL grow, but I'm still nervous about it. I've no clue what I'm doing - help!


Britto 'N' Burpee Love

Or should I say "Burpee 'n' Britto"?

Anyway, here's what I'm talkin' 'bout:

Britto luggage

I happened across this luggage collection at Heys USA via OK! Magazine. (Why I get that magazine, I don't know, but it was free, so hey. And it seems to be the only one I make time for lately, out of all my subscriptions - free and otherwise - so... okay!)

Thee luggage ist drool-worthy, no? I am coveting it.

For those who don't know, Rob and I bought one of Romero Britto's works of art on our European cruise two years ago, so this was quite cool to see. If I could afford a $300 piece of loogage, I would definitely snatch one or four pieces right up!

(My birthday's in September, if you're reading this, Mr. Trump.)

As for the Burpee love...

our seedy seedies arrived today! Pretty colorful, huh? Compared the Britto, these packages kind of put me to sleep.

But that's okay, because the goodness contained within will brighten up our backyard this summer, with the bright red tomatoes, purple peppers, yellow squash, orange carrots and... so much more.

I can't wait!

(Mr. Trump, I need some money for the wood for our raised beds, the soil, some tools, a compost bin... all in the name of education, you know.)


Not a particularly exciting day in Casa de Odette, I'm afraid. But that won't keep me from sharing all the details that I know you love so much. Both of you.


Someone on Freecycle posted 7 boxes of Annie's organic mac & cheese, so you know I snatched those babies right up! Even better, she lived right around the corner from us. Rob made some for the kids for dinner tonight. The girls LOVED it and Jack, who rarely loves any food that doesn't have sugar as its frst four ingredients, said he prefered the 'dark orange stuff instead.' Two out of three ain't bad.


Speaking of organic (because I never do that), Jack and I went on a leetle shopping spree at Harris Teeter today. The sales start on Wednesdays, so I took a look-see to figure out what they might have on sale that's actually organic. I think there were TWO things in the whole ad, which was sucktastic. But we were out of milk (because some unknown elf left out an ENTIRE half-gallon of organic leche, which made me want to weep), and Jack doesn't like his oatmeal prepared with water. Oatmeal snob! I had a bunch of coupons from Organc Valley's website, and a few others for organic stuff, so I figured we might as well go see what was to be had.

I bought about $72 worth of stuff for $50 with my coupons, which isn't too bad for organic. We picked up something like four half-gallons of milk, some cheese, yogurt, the above pizzas (I had some of the Spinach Feta for dinner, and it was okay, but weirdly spicy), and some chocolate ice cream. That shit was good!! I had about four small bites, and while I wanted more, I didn't really feel like summoning the Dumping Syndrome fairies, so I let it be.

I'm still enjoying this organic mess, though. It's expensive, but that'll be another challenge for me to overcome: finding room in our budget to eat all local, all organic, all the time. With Burpee's help, we should do just fine.

Or we'll starve to death.

You'll see.


I got all of this knitting done tonight, between dance class and sitting with my two "we're not sleepy" imps who fell asleep within minutes after I started playing the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales on Audiobook for them, courtesy of my iPhone. Well, except for the first two rows, which I did during dance class last night. (Would have been more, but I messed up the count and had to frog and restart.)

I'm not sure I'm loving this project. I don't even think I have enough yarn to finish it, but that actually adds to the excitement for me. Will she or won't she? Only one way to find out. (Okay, there's more than one way to find out, but I prefer to fly by the seat of my pants on these things.) Just in case, I'm keeping every last inch of my snippings, in case I need them!


See those pants I'm wearing? They're jammies, and I think it embarrasses the hell out of Chloë that I wore them to the bus stop. But that's beside the point. The point is, I bought them around Halloween '09 (hence the skulls), and I could not get them up past my thighs at that point. Now, they not only fit, but they are loose-ish and very comfy!


with them, I'm wearing one of Rob's size M Harley t-shirts, just because I can. I think he likes it. I know he likes it, actually, when his girl wears his shirts, so I'm excited that for the first time ever, I can!


just for kicks, I put on a pair of his zip-and-button-up shorts - no elastic in the waist - while I was doing laundry today, and I could button them!!! I had to shove my saggy belly all down in there to do it, but hello! Have you seen my husband? He is a very thin man!


While wearing this ensemble, I went out to get the mail, and a neighbor across the street called out, "Are you on a diet? You've gotten so skinny!"


So yeah, I'm all full of my SKINNY self at the moment, thankyouverymuch.

And on that note, I have shop reports to do.


P.S. Oh yeah. Rob took Jack to see the doc at the ADHD therapy clinic, you know, where Chloë goes? To see about the pediatrician's diagnoses of ADHD and ODD. The doc pretty much observed him for the hour and questioned Rob, and then summed it up with, "So why are you here?" In other words, he has neither, in that doc's opinion. We're going to go with that one. Joy!

P.P.S. The girls and I went to the library tonight after dinner. Sophia got her own library card and picked the first three books off the shelf to borrow. Chloë picked three more chapter books (she finished two in a week, so I figured she could handle a third this time), and I picked three more books related to teaching and homeschooling. Never mind that I still haven't read the last three. Never mind, I said!


You Wanna See Something Gross???

Okay, but don't say I didn't warn you:


My camera sucks, so that's the best picture I could get of my torn-off, battered pinky nail. I pulled off the band-aid this morning to have a look at the situation, and it was pretty gruesome. The nail was hanging by a thread; I thought about gluing it down, but then I didn't want to make the nailbed have some sort of sick reation. So I lifted it up, as in the above pic, and then I clenched my teeth, squeezed my eyes shut, and YANKED it off.

Holy effing cow, that hurt!!! It bled all over again. But now it's done, and it won't keep catching on things. I went the whole day without the bandage, which was a mistake, because everything kept digging into the tender nailbed.

You know, I'm not so smart sometimes. I'm wearing another Ni-hao Kailan band-aid to cover up my widdle booboo, and it's much happier that way.

But enough about that.

Another pretty low-key day for us in Chez Odette. Jack and I made some more bread:


which, again, I found to be delicious, but the kids didn't like. Not sure if Rob sampled it yet. I stuck it in the freezer for later, which will probably be tomorrow, the way we go through bread around here.


(Damn; where can I find some of THAT?!!) 

I made the girls an organic lunch for school today: PB and the organic Nutella-like chocolate spread on the sunflower-and-hemp bread from the other day, organic peach-and-orange juice boxes, organic applesauce, and... okay, non-organic fruit snacks, complete with Red dye #40, because I can't be a completely wonderful mother, now can I? Hey, they were in the snack stockpile bin, and Chloë gave me those puppy-dog eyes, so I caved. We'll have to use them up sometime, right?

My point in mentioning this was just to say how good that chocolate stuff was, and that the girls LOVED their sandwiches. Both of them came home begging for more! I gave them smaller versions, since the organic stuff is about half the size of a jar of Nutella and cost about $7.50! Needless to say, that will be a once-in-a-while kind of treat.

In the afternoon, Jack and I went to a class, which you can read about here.

We came back just in time to get the girls off the bus. I was hoping Rob would be up do it, because it was cold and rainy, but no such luck. I went down in my shorts and t-shirt and froze to death in the rain until another mom offered to let me sit in her warm van with her and her three adorable daughters. I readily accepted! (She's the one who kept the girls for me while I was at the hospital with Jack on Thursday; nice girl.)


Chloë has her Virginia SOL tests this week, so no homework. And no Cub Scouts for Jack tonight, since there's a committee meeting; he'll have it on Thursday instead. Which meant we took it very easy tonight. Dinner was snacks (cereal, bread, more cereal, more bread), and we lazed around in the living room accomplishing a whole lot of nuttin' much.

I sent Chloë to bed right at 8 pm, so she could get plenty of rest before her stupid test tomorrow. I was highly annoyed to find her still awake and reading when I sent Sophia to bed an hour later! I should just give her a reading lamp in her room, so she doesn't have to crawl out into the hallway to read by the bathroom light!


 While she was upstairs, Jack and Sophia were downstairs busily coloring the shrinky dink pieces that Aunt Stacey gave Soap for her 5th birthday last month. (And no, we still haven't written thank-you notes. I suck. They WILL get done this week - I mean it!!)  The two of them were so nicely engaged in their activity that there wasn't one moment of arguing. No squabbles. I loved it. 


Their favorite part (and mine, I must confess) was watching the 'dinks curl up and shrink in the oven. I'd forgotten how quickly it goes - only a few minutes!


Ta-da!! I wish they made something a little more functional, because who really needs these? Next time, we'll make something useful. But they were fun for the kids, so I suppose that's all the usefulness we need. 

And I'm off... hope your week started out well!


You Know You Want Summa Dis

So, excuse any weird caps in my typing. I shaved off another nail yesterday! This time it's my pinky, and I REALLY hacked it off but good this time. I cried and wailed aND sobbed; it hurt a ton. And it's messing up my typing.

Friday was an interesting day. Jack slept late, and Rob came home from work late, so I didn't get to go out and do all our organic food shopping until after 10 am. I went to the Farmer's Market first, to get our seafood from Uncle Chuck, but he wasn't open until after 1400. And I never went back, so no luck there until 1 June.

I stopped at the Market's creamery after that, to see what I could find for local/organic dairy. They had some GREAT semi-local milk products (from a Maryland dairy farm), but they don't actually practice organic. They call themselves 'better than organic' since they don't use preservatives, which apparently organic still does. I don't know. It looked great, and I was going to go back, but I didn't.

Instead, I went to the organic market there, and I spent our entire $200 food budget and then some on not too much stuff. I mean, I got six big canvas bags full, plus a huge glass bottle of the most crazy-delicious organic apple juice (I guess I don't have to keep saying 'organic' about the stuff I bought there, since it all was/is) - but normally, I can fill 15-20 bags for that much money. So this 100% organic business is going to be a REAL challenge, financially, but we are committed.

To do it, we're going to keep burning through our stockpile of non-organic foods until it's all gone, while I stock up on organic whenever I can get a good deal, to supplement it. We're cutting out junk food entirely - sorry, kids - and won't be buying anymore Coke or anything like that. Of course, we'll have the proceeds from our garden - our seeds have already been shipped! - so the kids are going to have to learn to eat, and love eating, lots of fresh veggies at every meal. I'm going to do without meat as much as I can and drink more protein shakes, since the organic meat is crazy expensive. And I'm going to make my own laundry detergent when our supply runs out. Some people have reported spending about $15 a YEAR on it when they make their own!!

I'm also wanting to learn to make our own things like cheese, yogurt and such. I really want to move into a house further out somewhere, where we can keep some chickens and maybe a couple of goats. Rob would like a cow, but I don't know about that. If we end up giving the boat thing up for the time being, that is.

I don't know whether we'll still be able to feed our family of 5 organically on $400 a month, but we're so determined to try, and you know what they say, "where there's a will..."

So what did I get?


Well, here's that big, giant (as SophiA SAys) bottle of apple juice. OMG, hands-down the BEST juice I have EVER tasted. I'm absolutely in love with it AND will buy a bottle every time I shop. It costs ten bucks, though!

You can see some of the produce I picked up in the background, there: a few apples, some pears, a lemon, garlic, green onions, some oranges, and ginger. I don't know yet what I'll do with the ginger, but it's cheap, and I'm sure I'll find lots of tasty recipes. We used to make a salmon dish, new-style sashimi, with fresh ginger, when I was pregnant with Chloë. Until I started barfing it up, which is why we stopped. I got the recipe from Chef Nobu when he was on Martha's show. Muy excelente; I'll have to find it again.


These cashews were also the tastiest I've ever hAD. Seriously, so good. Really, organic food is not only healthy and wonderful for you, but it is delicious!! I picked up a bag of sunflower seeds, too. I've been enjoying them immensely, but I'm the only one, since they're not salted. 

Rounding out my order, I picked up some organic Nutella-like stuff, peanut butter, two jellies, 6 packages of spaghetti, milk, butter, lots of cheeses, 2 cartons of eggs (over five bucks a pop!!), and for Rob and the kiddies, a package of bacon. The owner of the shop, Michele, was very nice and has been running it for over 25 years. She was very helpful in deciding what to buy, and she even gave me a discount on the items I had coupons for, though they don't accept coupons. I told her I'd probably be in twice a month, on paydays, and she seemed thrilled about that. She even teaches a class on 'going organic,' which I might attend if it's free or nearly so.

So I had a great time, and I can't wait to shop again. June 1st can't come soon enough!


While I was shopping, Dr. A called about Jack. Have I mentioned here that he hasn't been hearing me at home? I had made an appointment with Audiology, but it wasn't until mid-June. Since I was having to shout at him more and more in order to be heard, I was growing increasingly alarmed and imagining myself having to learn (and teach him) sign language. I called Doc A when I decided mid-June was just too far away to be playing around with his hearing like that, so he called in an walk-in appointment for me.

No one at audiology seemed to be aware of this walk-in set-up, so we waited over an hour before being seen. Finally, the audiologist took us back and gave him a battery of tests. It was stupefying. He has significant hearing loss in both his ears!! (I feel like calling up his teacher/the school and saying, "Hey, he wasn't 'not paying attention,' he coulding flipping HEAR you!!!") There were no 'waves' on his ear drum test. When air is blown into the ears, there are supposed to be mountains on the chart indicating movement of the drum; instead, the line was absolutely flat, indicating lots of fluid behing them. I was pretty devastated when I saw that. 

The rests of the tests were the kinds you might remember from grade school, where you raised your hand when you heard the noise? Except he didn't hear the noise at normal decibels, 20 db and below. He couldn't hear until at least 40-45 and sometimes not until 60 db! So no wonder he would be completely 'ignoring' the teacher when she was talking in a normal speaking voice; he couldn' heAR A DAMn thing she was saying to him. That makes me so sad for him.

What do you think; should I tell her? I would be nice...

Anyway, the plan now is to go back to Doc A on Thursday and see what the course of action will be, whether it's antibiotics, decongestants, wait-and-see (not my favorite choice, since his hearing is worsening daily, I think), or something else. 

My poor little guy. He has already been through so much.


Saturday marked the second day of Rob's motorcycle class (take three). He was gone almost the whole day. I was exhausted, so the cleaning I planned didn't happen; instead, we watched movies and rested on the couch for most of it. Oh, well. 

In the evening, Steph came over so Rob and I could have a date. We saw the movie Date Night, which was pretty funny. We laughed a lot, although i probably could have waited to see it on DVD.  But one of our tickets was free, from (I'm not sure why, but hey, I'll take it), so it was a cheap date.


Late at night, Jack, who had taken a long, late nap, stayed up past the kids' bedtime to help me bake some bread. I want to start baking all of our breads, sandwich and otherwise, to save even more money. We chose sunflower bread, since I've bought and loved it from the store. I found a great recipe on, and he did all of the measuring and mixing. I'd forgotten I have a dough hook for my powerful new mixer, or I'd have been baking bread every day since I got it. And boy, did it knead that dough quickly. I ♥ my KitchenAid! I wish I could get the pasta attachments for it, but they're too pricey for now. I showed them to Jack, online, and he really, really wants them, too. he is a pasta fiend!


Baking is great for many lessons. This time, the lesson was all about the properties of yeast. Jack was amazed at how much our bread dough rose in the bowl, and he liked punching it down for the second rising. Doesn't it look like nutty mashed potatoes, here?

 Our two loves came out perfectly. and oh, they were scrumptious!! Especially when paired with the organic cream cheese I'd picked up. Mm, so good. I've eaten way more than I should have. Don'tcha want a wee slice?


Sunday, I woke up early, around 0600, after onlyl about 4 hours of sleep. I couldn't get back, so I rose for another slice of sunflower bread. I'd added some of the hemp hearts that Michele - from the organic food market - gave me as a saMPLE. LOts of protein and omega fatty acids in those! It was just as good the following morning, too. Yum.

Rob went off to his final day of bike class, and the kids finally rose for breakfast. They couldn't agree on any one thing, so I had to play short order cook. Chloë pigged out on organic eggs and bacon and sunflower breAD WITH CREAM CHEESE. Jack had pancakes and bacon. Sophia had breAD, PANCakes and bacon. They all had the organic apple juice. They ate well, and I know it did their little bodies good. Probably cost $25 for the meal, too!! Heh.

I took a nap after that while they watched some PBS Kids-via-Netflix, until Daddy came home. 


Rob is now a licensed motorcyclist. Hallelujah!!!! Now, watch out, drivers. My baby daddy is on the road!

After i got over the excitement, the kids and I HEADED upstairs to clean. I did umpteen million loads of laUNDRY (AND AM still only half done; so much for keeping on top of that) while the kids supposedly cleaned their rooms. EVery time I turned around, Sophia had run downstairs to watch TV, Jack was lying down, and Chloë was reading. I can't blame them, reALLY; I hate cleaNING, TOO. But it has to be done, and they have to learn.



In the afternoon, we drove out to a new-to-us park for Tabitha's baby Lily's first birthday party. She was sassy in her little tutu and bow, eh? I love her blue, blue eyes.


None of us were prepared for how cold it was going to be. It had been hot and sweaty back at our house, but it was cold under the shelter. All the poor kids froze, as did most of us parents!


Tab had an owl piñata there for the bigger kids, so i already broke our new rule of 'no more candy or junk'. but how was I supposed to say 'no' after it was handed to them? As Jack explained to his complaining father, "It was a PARTY! You're supposed to eat candy at a PARTY!" 

I did not, however, let them eat the burgers or hot dogs. Nope, not gonna do it. Too much risk involved there.


they were pretty happy with their goodie bags, declaring it 'the best party ever.' Even though we didn't stick around for cake and the present-opening, because they were cold and hungry, they were happy!


Steph and Luke were there, too. He looked so cute in his little sun hat!

The birthday girl got her grub on; she has a GReAT APPEtite!!


After we left and arrived home, I went back to my laundry, the littles went back to 'cleaning,' and Chloë started some practice tests for the SOLs coming up this week at school. on the one hand, I really don't care about them, but on the other, I want her to do the best she can so we can establish a baseline for her skills. So we're preparing as much aS WE CAN, given the limited amount of time she has. (I'd have had her practice all day SaturdaY, BUT I plum forgot about them!)  When she needed a breAK, she came upstairs to visit and ended up having a good time being 'airplaned' by Mom & Dad. Don't her curls look AWESOme??


Of course, Sophia had to come running for a TURN! Jack was sound asleep by then (and still is), so he was a no-show for the fun.


Girls being silly


This is the face I usuALLY get when Sophia waNTS TO Have her picture taken!

Anyway, that's about it for this weekend. I think I'll go throw some more bread in the KitchenAid!


PS Sorry again for the crazy caps!


Sunday Stealing: The Speed Dating Meme, Part 2

Click here for more Sunday Stealing.

26. Have you ever been stung by a bee?

yeah, on the bottom of my foot at my grandparents' pool one summer. and i got stung by two wasps one night in my bed while i was sleeping, too. that sucked.

27. What's the sickest you've ever been?

probably when i got mono in my first couple weeks of college. i was in the hospital for 2 weeks!

28. What's your favorite form of exercise?

either rollerblading or swimming in the ocean

29. What's your favorite Cyndi Lauper song?

'he's so unusual'

30. What did you do for your 13th birthday?

i haven't the foggiest idea

31. Are you afraid of heights?

yeah, but not as much as i used to be, i don't think.

32. Have you ever taken dance lessons?

yes, i used to be a dancer. i even danced in NYC one summer under some famous choreographers. i loved that.

33. What's your favorite newspaper?

meh, i don't really have one. well, the miami herald, i liked that one a lot.

34. What's your favorite Broadway / West End musical?

hmm... hard to say; i haven't seen them all!

35. What's the most memorable class you've ever taken?

probably my psych 101 class in college. or sociology 101. great profs, very funny and entertaining, loved the subject matter, and i met my one-time best friend in the former and rejoined him in the latter. we had good times in class.

36. What's your favorite knock-knock joke?

whichever one i can remember at the moment. i can never remember jokes!

37. What's your least favorite commercial?

i don't ever watch tv, so i have no idea

38. If you could go to Disney World with any celebrity alive today, who would it be?

hmm... maybe drew barrymore. she'd probably be a lot of fun there.

39. Do you prefer baths or showers?

definitely showers. i HATE taking baths.

40. What's your favourite newspaper comic strip?

it used to be 'for better or for worse' as a kid. now i like dilbert, zits, and baby blues.

41. What's your favorite breakfast food?

used to be cereal, but i can't eat that anymore, so i don't know.

42. Who's your favorite game show host?

alex trebec!

43. If you could have a super power, what would it be?

flying, most definitely

44. Do you like guacamole?

i've never had it!

45. Have you ever been in a food fight?

yep. lol... in junior high, at least once

46. Name five songs to which you know all the lyrics.

anything of the 'pieces of you' album by jewel. 'tears in heaven' by eric clapton. 'more than words' by extreme. 'what's up' by 4 non blondes. and anything off 'the princess and the frog' soundtrack

47. What's your favorite infomercial?

i like crafty ones, like the one for the cricut

48. What's the longest you've ever waited in line?

6 days... no, really, i have no idea. i don't keep a log or anything.

49. What's on the cover of your address book or day planner?

the picture of hubs and me @ our anniversary dinner this year

50. Have you ever taken a picture in one of those little booths?

yep. the kids and i get a kick out of taking them together. it's especially fun now that i can actually fit in there with them!


Friday Fragments

Friday Fragments

Friday Fragments is brought to you by Mrs. 4444, mother of two of the most gorgeous children on the planet. Join in the fun!

So I'm still de-schooling Jack, my middle child. He's enjoying it. A large part of his day involves watching movies and TV streamed from Netflix (educational stuff, though, mostly PBS fare) at the moment, and that's intentional. We could be doing other, more stimulating things, and we will, but my plan is to give him some time to do absolutely nothing. I really feel it's important to give him a break right now. We do other things when he wants, and most of the time that involves making something in the kitchen. I swear, I have never seen him happier in his entire seven years. Mama is devoted entirely to fulfilling his desires during the day right now, and I just know he needed that boost. (No, I don't normally make it a habit to cater to my children's every whim!) 

If you want to follow our homeschooling journey, which I plan to begin in earnest around the beginning of August, you can do so here. I'd love to have you along for the ride!

I'm getting really excited about our lifestyle makeover. Be sure and answer my Aloha Friday question in the previous post; I really am interested in your answers! I don't want to reiterate what you can already read in that post, so basically, I'll just say that we are planning to eat a fully organic/local diet.

Since Hubs just got paid today, I'm thrilled to make our first organic shopping trip tomorrow. I've been doing research, although there is still lots more to do. I'm going to start at the Farmer's Market, with what will become a regular pit stop at the fishmonger's shack and then another at the organic grocer's hut.

From there, if we still need things (I'm not going to go crazy; all we really need at the moment are basics like milk, eggs, cheese and bread), I'll visit the Organic Food Depot near our house. I never even knew it was there until I did a search for "my town" and "milk," and it turns out it's literally right down the road!

And if that's still not enough, I'll hit up Harris Teeter, which has an extensive selection of organic items and which, thankfully, takes coupons. I've had some coupons for Organic Valley in my coupon box for at least six month now, and it's to make use of them!

So go, answer my Aloha Friday and tell me your feelings on the matter!

Well, as you can imagine, all this organic eating is going to put a serious dent in an already battered budget. We don't generally fritter our money away (anymore...), but we've had such a hard time since September or so, that it was finally time to sit down and make up a true budget. I signed up for the free trial at HelloWallet, which helped a great deal. I recommend it if you need help with a budget, too. I mean, I totally could have made up our budget without HW, but it helped me think of some spending categories that I would have forgotten about on my own, and that would have gotten me into trouble again. Now, we are budgeted right down to the very last penny.

Another great feature, aside from the budget developer, on HelloWallet is one which will help you pay off your debts faster. Thanks largely to paying out-of-pocket for my gastric bypass surgery last year, we have a large amount of credit card debt. I used the calculator on HW to find out how long we'd be in that debt, and it was shocking. I didn't think we could manage to pay it off any faster, but after spending all night crunching some serious numbers and using their tool to show me how much faster I'd pay off those Visa bills - and how much we'd save in interest - if we increased our monthly payments, we are now committed to some serious belt-tightening.

With all that help, I even managed to find some extra room in the budget for our currently recurrent dental bills, home improvement, gardening, and the children's homeschooling expenses. And yes, eating organically. So it's a huge relief, like a heavy burden has been lifted.

(Unfortunately, Chloë's and my somewhat-obsessive Webkinz habit doesn't fit in the plan. Oh, well.)

I just found out Thursday night that Sophia won her mommy a nice prize!

At the Girl Scouts pre-registration event last week, she entered a drawing for a night of pampering at The Body Shop - and she was one of the winners! I could take her with me, and some of her little friends, but the lady on the phone recommended I take my grown-up friends instead. And so, that is what I will do! There will be massages, a make-up therapist (her words, not mine), and goodness knows what else, for free! I can't wait. She had me at "massage." So, d'ya wanna come?

Can't think of anything else I need to share with you that hasn't already been posted, so I guess it's time for some Cute Kid Quotes:

To keep her busy, I set Sophia, 5, to work building a cave in the living room. She excitedly got down to work and was all business as she shouted back at me over her shoulder, "Mama, I'm moving out! I'm going to the North Pole! I'm going to DO everything and PLAY with everything, and that's ALL I'm going to do!"

I love that. "I'm going to do everything and that's all." Not much, is it?

Chloë, 8½, asked me thoughtfully the other day, "Does the President know our names? Does he know we're good people?"

I doubt it, but it warmed my heart to know she thinks we're 'good people.'

I sang a song the other night to my little girls, making it up as I went along. After I sang, ♫ Good night, little girls! ♪

Sophia returned with her own lilting melody, ♪ Good night, Big Mommy! ♫


Sophie said, "Mommy, can I have one of those oranges in the fridge? You know, those orange, little, circle things?"

So glad she clarified that one.

That's all, folks! Have a great weekend!





Aloha Friday


Link up with Kailani if you're playing along today!

My question for you this week is:

How do you feel about eating organic food?

My answer:

Until very recently, when my I screened the documentary Food, Inc. for my family and myself, it wasn't important to me at all. It was more important to me to eat local, but even then, I didn't try too very hard. That's all changed now. We are going to strive to be 100% organic. The plan is to grow as much of our own food as possible, buy local from the Farmer's Market for as much of the rest as we can, and buy organic from the supermarket for whatever's left. If there's something we can't get local or organic, we'll have to do without. But thank goodness we now have a Trader Joe's in our area!

So how 'bout you? Have you seen Food, Inc? Will you watch it? You can watch it instantly on your computer or TV (via Wii) from Netflix. What are you waiting for??


Knitting And Stuff


Steph and Luke came over the other day to get his new shorties. They're on backward here, but they look like they fit pretty well to me. Apparently they don't, so I'm going to reknit them after I've done a few other projects. Always a project... I'm so far behing on my scrapping, I think it'll be 2019 before I finish 2009's book!


Here's me, today. I had to get dressed up for an important bank mystery shop today (Thursday), and this dress was pretty much all I had left in my closet. I'm SO far behind on laundry, it's not funny. I'm bound and determined that I'm going to send all day on it tomorrow... we shall see if that comes to pass, as I've said that before. Anyway, this is now my Facebook profile pic, and I've gotten lots of compliments on it. I didn't wear JUST this to the bank; I actually wore my new white trench coat from Old Navy over it. (It was originally fifty bucks; I got it for twelve!) With heels and sunglasses, I looked pretty damn stylish, I think! I'd have taken a picture, but I would have had to go outside and set up the tripod and, well, that might have looked pretty silly to the neighbors. I wish I'd gotten a side picture of me in this dress - I look thin!! Love this dress. I can't believe I'm actually loving a dress - a sleeveless one, no less - but I do. Life is pretty good.


I didn't really mean to, but I stayed up all last night again getting a bunch of work done. The night just kind of slipped away from me before I knew it. I spent a few hours knitting Chloë's "Chloe" sweater, and I finished it just before she got off the school bus today. I think it looks really cute on her, but I'm not sure she likes it. She says it's really itchy and scratchy, and true, it is pure wool. I'll have to see if I can soften it up for her somehow; she has always had somewhat sensitive skin.


It fits pretty well, though, which is surprising since I made the 6-8 size, and she's so tiny. I'm glad it fits, and I'm sure it will for a while. Hopefully she'll get plenty of use out of it, and it won't sit unused in a drawer somewhere.

I really don't have much else to report for today or yesterday, so that's about it! I have a quick crochet project on the hook, and then I'll knit another "Chloe" sweater for Sophia before reknitting Luke's shorties.

Oh! I know. The bank shop I did was right next store to TAPS (the Teachers and Parents Store), so I walked down there to have a good look around. I've been in there before - I have a membership card and all - but not from an educator's perspective. There are a vast amount of resources, and I could have gone a little crazy in there. It was just an idea-gathering venture, though; I'd purposefully left my wallet in the car so I couldn't spend. I found lots of great little tools that I can use - especially in the music section, I found lots of wonderful instruments for $2-10! I wasn't as impressed with the arts section, but I have ideas for finding projects, and there's always Michaels for that. 

As for the core subjects, I know what I'm going to use for Math for all three kids and Phonics for the littles. I know roughly what I want to use for Science, and I have some materials, will get plenty more from the library, and found one or two inexpensive things to supplement from TAPS. For Social Studies, we'll use an eclectic variety of materials, mostly from the library, I hope. 

Which brings me to Language Arts, mainly for Chloë. Oh my gosh, there is so much stuff! Cursive writing, which she hasn't really studied yet, and spelling, and grammar, and composition, and of course reading... there were tons of great books at TAPS, but which to use? I promised her that she would not be spending all day doing worksheets, and I don't want to go back on my word. So I need to be figuring that one out soon. 

Anyway, that's it. Payday's tonight - I can't wait to go down to the Farmer's Market tomorrow and get some yummy local and organic goodies!!


I've Lost The Complete Oxford English Dictionary!!

I saw this list on Ravelry. It's for weight loss surgery patients:

1 pound = a Guinea Pig
1.5 pounds = a dozen Krispy Kreme glazed donuts
2 pounds = a rack of baby back ribs
3 pounds = an average human brain
4 pounds = an ostrich egg
5 pounds = a Chihuahua
6 pounds = a human’s skin
7.5 pounds = an average newborn
8 pounds = a human head
10 pounds= chemical additives an American consumes each year
11 pounds = an average housecat
12 pounds = a Bald Eagle
15 pounds = 10 dozen large eggs
16 pounds = a sperm whale’s brain
20 pounds = an automobile tire
23 pounds = amount of pizza an average American eats in a year
24 pounds = a 3-gallon tub of super premium ice cream
25 pounds = an average 2 year old
30 pounds = amount of cheese an average American eats in a year
33 pounds = a cinder block
36 pounds = a mid-size microwave
40 pounds = a 5-gallon bottle of water or an average human leg
44 pounds = an elephant’s heart
50 pounds = a small bale of hay
55 pounds = a 5000 BTU air conditioner
60 pounds = an elephant’s penis (yep, weights more than his heart!)
66 pounds = fats and oils an average American eats in a year
70 pounds = an Irish Setter
77 pounds = a gold brick
80 pounds = the World’s Largest Ball of Tape
90 pounds = a newborn calf
100 pounds = a 2 month old horse
111 pounds = red meat an average American eats in a year
117 pounds = an average fashion model (and she’s 5’11”)
118 pounds = the complete Encyclopedia Britannica
120 pounds = amount of trash you throw away in a month
130 pounds = a newborn giraffe
138 pounds = potatoes an average American eats in a year
140 pounds = refined sugar an average American eats in a year
144 pounds = an average adult woman (and she’s 5’4”)
150 pounds = the complete Oxford English Dictionary
187 pounds = an average adult man
200 pounds = 2 Bloodhounds
235 pounds = Arnold Schwarzenegger
300 pounds = an average football lineman
400 pounds = a Welsh pony


I'm almost at an average adult man! I want to lose somewhere between 2 Bloodhounds and Ahnold.

Pretty funny list, though, eh?