Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Dog...

So... the other day, I'm watching all four boys and I look out the window. There is this little mangy white fluffy dog darting all over the road, almost getting hit. I am really not much a dog person anymore, but I still went outside to see if I could call it to me to check for tags.

At the same time, my neighbor steps out of his house, jumps in his truck and yells at me, "If I get it, will you take it??", as he is pulling out of his driving. "Um... " (the dog has already had several close calls on our little street and it's heading toward the busy one), "okay, " I said, assuming it had tags. It looked like the pet of our neighbor's a few roads down. I've returned their dog to them in the past with no problem. Dumb Move!!!

So he manages to rescue the dog, but not before it did run across the busy road, causing traffic to stop and honk several times. My neighbor brings it back with a rope tied to his collar. He handed it over to me. With. no. tags. What am I supposed to do with this dog?

I tied it to our front tree in hopes of someone looking for it or driving by to notice it. Did I mention it had rained earlier in the afternoon, so this dog was wet, dirty & smelly. I was able to even have a different neighbor drive around the neighborhood knocking on doors of people we knew who had similar dogs... no dice.

So, as soon as the other boys were picked up, I packed up the boys and the dog (in a large rubbermaid bin, with no lid) and we raced to the vets office before they closed. They scanned him for a microchip. No dice. And while they were nice, offered no help as far as taking the dog off my hands. They did offer me a few dog food samples for it as I had nothing. I swung by another vets office on the way home, with the same results (minus the food.) I called the Humane Society and Animal Control only to get voicemails.

As soon as we were home, we took the dumb dog for a walk in hopes of finding an owner out looking for it or it recgonizing it's home. Get this - While out, we actually did run into someone who was out looking for thier little white fluffy dog. But ours wasn't thiers. Isn't that meanest trick?!

So I tied it back outside again, gave it a little food and prayed that someone was out looking for it. I was not keeping this dog overnight. Plus I was babysitting again the next day, so it's not like I could have taken it anywhere anyway.

Then the barking started. Non-stop barking. I don't know if I have ever been so frustrated with a dog. He took up our whole evening and now he's barking non-stop. I finally went outside, untied him and told him to "Go Home!" and walked back inside.

Then the guilt kicked in. Guilt that made me even more mad at this dog. I couldn't help but watch him from my window. I mean, he was almost hit earlier today several times. But the stupid dog wouldn't leave our yard.

Finally, another dog walker walked by. She noticed the dog (I hid behing my curtains... I wanted nothing to do with the dog) and after realizing it was a stray, she took it. I'm sure she was better equipted to deal with a stray than me. And I was SO thankful to get it off my hands! It may not have been the best way to handle it, but I hated being responsible for this dog. I am mad at it all over again, just typing out this story. It may be heartless, but no more strays for me.

October 27th, 2006
Marc got home last night from his Chicago trip and was greeted at the front door by a dog. A dumb adorable golden retriever. This stupid dog got loose from its owners (still was dragging it's chain). I win it over so I can read its tags since it is obviously someone’s pet (well cared for, friendly, obedient, etc..) What do you know... he (or she) has no tags. And now it won't leave our front step. Darn it. Still there as we were getting ready to go to bed last night, so we at least gave him an old Rocky pillow to help keep him (or her) a bit warmer. And that dumb dog was STILL there this morning!! Augh! I don't want to be responsible for this dog. Just GO HOME! I don't even have anything to feed it.

November 9th, 2004
SO.... anyway, Andrew goes down for a short nap, while I clean up a bit, get the mail, chase a stray dog half way to Kalamazoo with a handful of Rocky's dog food, work on some Christmas gifts, etc... After Andrew wakes up and eats some peas and bananas, we head to the park with Rocky for a while. It was really chilly but a beautiful sunny day. When we got back, Andrew chased me around the front yard for a while.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

These are a few of my favorite things...

Okay, well, one of my favorite things is this "new to me" coffee mug. It was at my parent's house last week when we visited with the boys. I never noticed it before. It's ceramic, has no handle, and is textured around the bottom. I don't feel like my pictures do much for it, but it's my new favorite mug.

I ended up using it almost everyday while at my folks. They offered to let me have it several times as they (like most of us) have more mugs than we know what to do with. But I kept declining because, like them, I have more mugs than I know what to do with. However, as I was packing up the last day, Dad offered one more time. Yes... I really did want that mug.

Apparently it was my Gram's mug. I was told that she eyed it at a Chinese restaurant in Florida many many years ago, but wouldn't buy it for herself. My cousin then bought it for her knowing that she liked it.

Now it's the first mug I grab, only using another when it's dirty. I only need to figure out what the writing says...

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Our Fat Tuesday... so far.

There is usually one day a week when Andrew doesn't have school and I am not babysitting. We usually try to do something fun or a little out of the ordinary that day. However, the last couple weeks, it hasn't really worked out for some reason or another. But we had a rough plan for today.
First of all, it is National Pancake Day at IHOP. So, we got up, the boys got to watch a little PBS while I did a general house pickup/vacuum, then we headed out. I dropped off a coat to a thrift store, then we hit IHOP with the hopes of pancakes without an hour long wait. We got there around 10:30am and were seated immediately. We each received a short stack, which I couldn't finish, but Andrew finished his (and then some!) AJ made a nice dent in two of his pancakes.
We then headed to Meijer. We needed milk, eggs, and haircuts. We usually go to our friend to get haircuts for the boys, but there were great coupons in the paper and they really needed it, so we just did it. The boys did SO good with their haircuts! They got suckers and AJ's stylist even put "product" in his hair to spike it.

By then it was noon. We went home long enough to take potty breaks, drop off the milk & eggs, & make a few phone calls. One of the phone calls changed our plans. I was thinking about heading to the city's art museum. It's free for city residents after 1pm on Tuesday. However, I wasn't sure if it was a kid-friendly place. One of the calls confirmed that Tuesdays were probably not the best day to bring kids, so I had to come up with Plan B.
Chuck E Cheese. This is far from my favorite place, however, we have been blessed with oodles and oodles of tokens and tickets by a couple of our former college kids who worked there, then moved out of town. So, we can go there and play for an hour or so for free and the boys are thrilled. We also had a $5 gift card, so we snacked on some cinnamon sticks, too. Hey... it is Fat Tuesday.
Finally, I swung by Sam's Club on the way home. They have the best rotisserie chickens for the best price and it will feed us for three meals. The down side is you end up waiting in line behind people stocking their own personal mini-mart just to by a $5 chicken.

It's after 3pm and now we are home. We are forgoing naps today in hopes of an early bedtime (that mountain of clothes is still staring at me... we had Bible Study last night). However, AJ was nearing a melt-down state, so they are up in my room (where the TV works) watching some Veggie Tales; having a little down time.

I have to finish one pan of enchiladas (ran out of eggs yesterday) & make waffles for breakfast tomorrow, yet. At least dinner is already taken care of.
How about you... did you have a paczki today?

Monday, February 23, 2009

Odds and Ends...

  • Welcome to the 80's! We now have a functioning fax machine in our home.

  • We were hit with a pretty good snow storm Saturday. In fact, we attempted to go to church and ended up turning around and heading back home because the roads were so bad... and that's driving our Explorer.

  • Marc and I totally revamped our office/spare room downstairs. It was a lot of work and it still needs a lot of work, but it felt good to clean out and purge. Now if we can only do that with all the other rooms in our home. I smell a serious garage sale this spring.

  • On that same note: things are still going to be a little nutty around here for a couple weeks. Marc is home from being gone in TX last week, but has a co-worker/mentor in town with him this week and therefore will be gone most evenings. Next week he is back in TX for part of the week, then I think his boss comes into town the following week. Or something along those lines.

  • I am staring at a mountain of clothes that need folded. And I have three pans of enchiladas to make when I jump offline.

  • I've completed the next two books in the Twilight Series; New Moon & Eclipse. However, I think I'll wait until I am finished with the series before commenting on them.

  • We've started a ticket reward system with Andrew. He can earn tickets for quiet reading time, helping me vacuum or unload the dishwasher, doing something unexpectedly nice for AJ, etc... Each ticket is worth 5 minutes of computer time. He can also get tickets taken away for getting out of bed, whining, etc... Seems to be working so far. It also keeps me in check as I can easily let the computer 'babysit' him for long periods when I'm busy and not paying attention to time.

  • I'm currently trying to teach the nuances of the "CVS Game" to a friend.

  • Andrew turns 5 in exactly two weeks. F.I.V.E!

Very random, I know. My mind just hasn't been in a blogging state of mind lately. Which is a bummer, because I really do want to blog and I value the posts tremendously. Just need to get on the ball.... with so many other things. (*sigh*)

Saturday, February 21, 2009


I know it's been quite a while since I've posted. We are all well.... well, Andrew has a healthy cough going on, but other than that we are fine.

Most of you know already, but I wanted to announce officially that Marc started a new job on Monday. We are very thankful. He spent his first week training in Texas. We, the boys and I, were going to stay home due to a couple Bible Study, babysitting, preschool, etc... However, everything really kind of just opened up for us, so we decided to head to Ohio to spent a few days with my parents.

Marc had a good week in TX. It was obviously warmer there than here in MI. And while it was a busy week for him, I think he's excited about the new opportunity. Please continue to pray for him as this is a completely new industry for him and therefore he has a lot to learn while hitting the ground running. In fact, we came home from picking up Andrew from preschool yesterday, and our front door was almost completely blocked by many large heavy boxes of catalogs that were delivered for him.

We had a nice few days in Ohio. We left as soon as Andrew got our of school on Monday. He played hooky on Wednesday and we headed back Thursday afternoon so he could make it back to school on Friday. We were spoiled by my parents... eating out for for almost every meal.

We picked up Marc from the airport last night... very exciting for the boys. It was so nice to have him home. This weekend will go quickly, too. Marc is at the local Boat Show this morning with his friend. Then we need to spend most of the weekend recovering from our trips... laundry, cleaning, etc... Plus Marc had a lot to do to finish setting up his office, fax, removing all these boxes from our main floor, etc... We may hit church tonight, too, rather than Sunday morning.

Wow - not an extremely interesting post. I think that's why I put it off so long. But that's what we've been up to.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What a week...

What a week the last 7 or 8 days have been. Seriously... it's been good, but I need a maid. The busy-ness started this time last week when I watched my "other boys" last Wednesday and Thursday. Again - great kids, but 4 boys makes for busy days. Add Bible Study to Wednesday night and by Friday I was a little worn out. However, Friday night/Saturday afternoon was A.W.E.S.O.M.E.... but you already read about that. We decided to go to our Saturday night church service that evening.
Sunday & Monday, we broke our normal routine a bit and we had our "other boys" here all day both days. They even got to spend the night Sunday night. (Andrew was so excited about the sleepover). But by Bible Study Monday evening, I felt drained. However, I love the ladies in my study and was so thankful I was there when all was said and done.
Tuesday evening we attended a birthday party for one of our favorite five-year-olds. It was at an indoor playground-type place and because it was Tuesday night.... we had the place to ourselves. It really was a lot of fun. Wednesday, I had Bible Study in the evening.
Tonight we are having "date night"....with a sitter and everything. I have a LOT to do before then. Tomorrow night, we are having dinner with a couple couples. Like I said... good things. Really good things... but just a busy week for us. Of course, there are the usual things that have to continue throughout all of it.... grocery shopping, laundry, convincing a 4 year old to write his name on 15 Valentines, taking walks/bike rides in the surprisingly warm February weather, visiting a Kindergarten open house., etc...
Okay, I did mention I had a lot do to... so I should probably get off the laptop and get to work. The pizza that the kids and sitter are eating for dinner tonight is not going to make itself.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Plan

The other night, the boys and I got invited to the mall to hangout with our neighbor (Andrew's classmate). We figured it would be a good opportunity to let all the kids run and play and burn some energy for the evening. And since we were going to be gone, Marc went over to a buddies house to hangout for the evening.

However, too late to do anything about it, we realized that Marc left with the car seats and now we had no way to get to the mall. This obviously disappointed the boys, especially Andrew (although he never knew the full plan to begin with... I've learned a thing or two in the last 5 years).

So, to cheer them up and still have a fun night, we sat down together made our plan. It was actually Andrew's idea. He kept asking, "So now what's the plan for tonight". He's heard Marc and I talking... that is SO something we would say.

Anyway, together we made our plan along with attempted pictures so that the boys could "lead" me through the evening.
  1. Dinner & clean up toys on main floor.
  2. Play with Cornstarch Goo (while Mommy cleans up dinner)
  3. Boys shower
  4. Have a special treat
  5. Watch a Veggie Tales
  6. Pick up toys downstairs
  7. Complete bedtime list
  8. Sleep.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Spoiled, and it's not even my birthday.

My friend, Becky's birthday is this week. To celebrate, her hubby sent her and myself out last Friday for the ultimate girls get-away. It was amazing.

We started at noon by eating lunch at Qdoba, our favorite. We then hit the spa for an "Executive Pedicure". I had a gift card from my birthday of 2007 (yes, two birthdays ago), that needed used, so the services were "free".

With our toes painted, we wore our pedicure flip-flops to the theater and caught a matinee. We watched, "Paul Blart: Mall Cop". The storyline was a little iffy (aimed toward young audiences, I believe), but it definitely had it's funny moments. And Kevin James is just funny (everyone tells Marc he looks like Kevin James.)

After the movie and making a trip back to the spa to recover my shoes I accidentally left there, we were off the the Amway Grand Plaza. Her hubby booked us a package deal (ok, I'll confess.. the package was called the "Romance Package", but it was perfect for us and we were able to get two queen beds.)

We settled into our room, changed into warm clothes, hit the concierge room for afternoon appetizers, then walked downtown to do a little ice skating. Becky brought her own skates, so that should tell you something about her ability on the ice. I, however, hadn't ice skated in who knows how long and only a handful of times in my life. And unfortunately, I wasn't as good as I thought I might be (and I had extremely low expectations for my ability). But I managed around the rink the first time... then around again and finally, I was quick enough not to make a complete fool of myself. And it was really fun even if my face didn't portray it often.

Skating was unfortunately cut short due to a health emergency by the fellow skater, but by then my ankles and skins were threatening the cramp anyway.

Walking back to the hotel, we noticed a sign for Free Carriage Rides. We stopped to read it and was approached by a local news anchor who told us that this particular company was offering free rides to promote his business. While we waited for the carriage to return the newsman talked to us quite a bit and finally asked if we would like to be a part of the story. When the carriage returned, there was a camera-man following it. So, of course, while we were taking our free carriage ride, we had to call our hubby's and have them record the news for us.

We then had time to change out of our warm clothes and hit the concierge room again for appetizers & drinks before heading down to the hot tub. We soaked (my ankles and shins were rejoicing) until the pool closed. We headed back into the room to change, grab the room service menu, and hit the conceirge room again. There was no food or drinks at this point, but it was just a nice room with a fireplace and a gorgeous view to relax in.
We discussed our dinner options (a dinner credit came with the package) when we realized it was 11pm. We practically ran back to our room to catch the news! (Too funny.... here we are on a little Mommy Vacation, and we are running to watch the news.) Sure enough, we were on it and we even said a few things. Granted... I sounded like an idiot, but oh well. How often are you on the news?? There was even an online article.

After the news we ordered an amazing dinner. Seafood cakes with jam-gravy and grass (ok, it really was mango chutney and puree basil, we think.... it was really good), two personal pizzas, cobbler and creme brulee. We lingered over dinner for a long while just chatting, however around 1:30pm, we decided to hit the piano bar across the street before it closed at 2pm. We only had 15 minutes there, but we didn't have pay a cover or order anything at that point, and we could just sit and enjoy the music. We ended the evening chatting again up the concierge room and finishing off our cobbler before going to bed the latest I have in a really-really long time.

We really packed a lot into one night and the whole thing was so much fun!! So thank you, Becky, for having a birthday and for having a hubby who is willing to spoil me, too.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Marc had to call to me tell me this... still laughing.

Marc took Andrew out today for a little one on one time. They hit the gym where they shot hoops and kicked around a soccer ball for a while before stopping at McDonalds for lunch. They went to the place where Marc frequently plays pick-up ball. Andrew had never been there and was asking all kinds of questions about it.

Marc was explaining that it was about four times bigger than the gym Andrew was used to going to (the one we occasionally hit on Fridays). Andrew didn't really understand the "four times bigger" concept, so Marc stated that he could put four of Andrew's gyms inside one of daddy's gyms.

This seemed to make sense to Andrew... for a while.

However, a few minutes later he told Marc that he wouldn't be able to put his gyms into daddy's gyms because the doors were too small.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Meltdown Muffin Meltdown Monday

Another Monday. I confess.... this one started out rough. Nothing terrible happened, and yet everything happened. You know how those days go, right? Please tell me you do. The days where you are running late for school, you spill your coffee down into your purse, you conk your son's head on the car door, you have a constantly whiny boy, etc, etc, etc.... Oh, goodness, it's frustrating when petty things can get you so worked into a tizzy!

However, naptime came and I was able to take a nice hot shower and calm down. This afternoon we got our hands dirty. We made Cornstarch Goo!!! Mix cornstarch and water until it becomes hard in your hands when squeezed, but then melts through your fingers when let up. So.Much.Fun.

(hint: if you can stand it... wait for a while when done playing, even though it's a huge mess, and it will clean up super easy.)

Marc then came home from running "errands" (after I wigged out on him a little this morning) and brought me back a surprise gift he said he would NEVER buy me. An extra large muffin tin!! He thinks it's a lame gift, but I mentioned I would like one for my birthday or Christmas or something. I was excited about it and it was sweet of him to want to cheer me up. An appropriate gift for today.

So then tonight, we have our 20-Something's Bible Study. However, AJ is better, but still not great and it work out for me to just stay home with the boys tonight while Marc goes to the study. Come 7pm, I was thankful for the decision as he completely melted down. Not sure if he hurt, if he was tired, but something was up. There was no comforting him until he was in bed. Literally, the second his head hit the pillow, his eyes closed and he was out. And he took a nap this afternoon. Who knows. Still praying that his ears stay clear.

Just another Monday.
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