Friday, August 24, 2007

New. To me.

I found a new living room set on the great Internet garage sale know as Craigslist. It is close to perfect for my family...well...that is if you disregard the hideous fabric. But, I can live with the fabric for the price I paid. The furniture comes from THIS END UP (which I will make clickable later) and has been my desired brand since I was 12 years old and my mom brought home her very first new piece of furniture. It was a dining table and chairs. Sturdy. Simple. And oh so very durable. I now have those tables and chairs, and carved somewhere on the bottom is my 12 year old signature. Now I have a family room set that matches. Sturdy. Simple. And oh so durable. As soon as I get a chance I am carving my name on the bottom of every piece.
After I make new cushion coverings it will fit our lifestyle perfectly.
I love having those clean rural lines. The soft wood with some other families history written all over every scratch and dent. Every wax dripping and crayon mark says that it was loved before and I love that about used furniture. The lady who sold it to me told me to sand those scratches out. She sounded like my mother who told me to sand out the dining room table scratches. I will listen to neither one. I like gouges. Like human flaws, it brings character. (yes, I am still making excuses for my bed spelling...)
Anyhow, it has a tone of storage and since we use the family room as a school room, that makes it extra wonderful.

As an aside: Those tall bookshelves will be painted and moved upstairs very soon. I have a secret plan for them that I hope to share very very soon.

I can't spell.

I am guessing, that if you have ever read a single thing that I have written- you already know that fact. I simply am very horrible at spelling. I pretty much stink at typing too.

Dustan was reading through my recent blog posts last night and commented on the seemingly hilarious errors. he asked me why I didn't proofread before publishing my post. I shamefacedly admitted that I DO proofread. It's just that I become disinterested in what I write after it is written. I hate proofreading and I easily skim over errors.

I blame this habit of mine on my mother. See, I was homeschooled. After grade three I never saw a spelling test and since I can type (badly) 45 words a minute with my hunt and peck method, I blew off the Mavis Beacon computer typing program my parents tried to force me to take. Mom was just too soft on me and so, I blame her. I happen to blame her for all those other rotten character flaws I have too. Wait...I blame a few of them on my dad. Basically, this is not my fault. it's someone else's and I don't want to change.

But I will. Last night I dreamed that I wrote the next Great American Novel but that it was turned down because the agent couldn't get past, "She climd over de hil and saw to her dimae dat the hors wus indied gon." Why I was writing a story about a horse, I will never know. I also remember that I was baffled by my lack of comma use. I always use commas. I am in love with commas. How could I have written a sentence without a comma? The agent was more concerned with the fact that it was unreadable. We argued over the importance of spelling and then I suddenly found my self swimming in the Arctic Ocean being chased by polkadotted sharks. I woke soon after I was bitten on my rear end.
Anyhow, I should learn to spell. And to proofread. And to type. And to not start sentences with a conjunction.
Maybe I will. Maybe I won't. Maybe I should hire someone to do it for me?

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Love and Hate

This will be a post about my relationship with things. Not people. Not ideas. Not God. Just things. because face it. i love things. And I hate some things too.

Ten things I love:
1. Polka Dots
2. The color Green
3. My wooden Clogs
4. Pockets
5. Buttons
6. The sheets on my grandmother's guest bed.
7. Socks- but only when I have to wear shoes...and only if they are funky and goven to me by my children.
8. Books
9. Marcus' artwork
10. Open Shelves

Ten things I hate:
1. Hair products
2. Pastels
3. Lonaburger baskets
4. Geese
5. Birkenstocks (love the look hate the lack of comfort)
6. Jeans that cut into my waist
7. Math
8. Cookie Cutter Suberban Neighborhoods that cut down all the trees and cause the dissapearance of millions of acres of farmland. They also destroy the old historic homes just because they make the neighborhood look bad. Nothing makes me angrier than to see a bulldozer in a newly mown-down cornfield
9. Scratchy facrics
10. Mahogany

Thursday, August 16, 2007

It must be Food Day in Blogland

As I travel through the realm of Blog, I am greeted with the delicious sights of oatmeal Cookies from Kim's Daisy Cottage. And then a little bit later I was practically assaulted with images of homemade pretzels at SplaneyoDo those golden things not look as if you could reach into your screen and gobble one (or four) down in a nano second?
I thought I better contribute.
Really. We all had a bite and tossed it. Its an apple and cheese Fritatta and the eggs turned green and it tasted burnt, even though it most definately was not. Just yuck. It looks pretty though...
Yummy. Black bean burger topped with homemade guacamole and a side salad. THis is not diet food. This is goumet eating. My kids had peanut butter and bananna sandwhiches which by far made up for this morning's disaster.

I got hungry for a snack this afternoon and reached into the fridge for my strawberries, I couldn't find them anywhere and I turned around to see this:
Esther claims this little deed. Her mouth is stained red from her nose to her chin which verifies the confession. Her impish little smile did nothing to help the situation. "Dem trawbery gooooood, mama."

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

An Uncluttered Life

I'm back from a trip to the cabin. It was so joyful there. I have been trying to figure out why I am so much happier there than I am at home. Dustan once said that he never saw me happier than when I am camping. Why is that?
I still have to cook.
I still have to do laundry.
I still have to wash dishes.
I still have to separate my children from a billion squabbles.
I still have to hear "Mommy, I want..." over and over and over and over again.
Why are all these things fun when I am not at home.

It's because they are ALL I have to do. My life away from home is so uncluttered. There is time to breathe...and to live.
No telephone pulling me away from drawing in the dirt with a stick.
No email to answer, which frees me up to teach my kids how to play rodeo on pool noodle horses.
No appointements to scramble to. instead I can take a nap in the hammock and find diamond shaped impressions on my face.
No expectations which means no one will care if I count Lake water as a "good enough" bath for my kids.
No one to impress which means I can wear the same clothes twice and no one will care.

Somehow the big challenges of the day (figuring out how to get the foam rocket out of the top of a pine tree, or settling the argument about whose frog is whose, or deciding if we should go swimming or play in the mud) become so much more fun when there isn't other (more important) things competeing for my time. The same things that frustrate and bore me at home, are so appealing and relaxing when I am taken away from all that other time consuming, energy draining turmoil.

I know how to unclutter my house. Someone tell me how to unclutter my life.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Will be going

To a Place of Tranquility.
And memories both good and bad.
Dominated by the memory of Hannah. Gone now for a year an a half. Our love for her wafts through the air of this place and is what moves the needles of the pine trees in place of wind. Someone caughs and you know. They are fighting back the ache that just entered their hearts and tried to come up their throat in a sob. Every head that is bowed is thinking of her, every wistful farway look is remembering.

It still hurts. After all this time. It still hurts.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Someone Cut the Apron Strings

Yes, I know you think it's funny. It's not. Stop laughing. Guess who did it? Remember the old Family Circle Comic where the "Not Me" person was held responsible for all the family mistakes? It seems that "Not Me" has come to visit at my house.
Weston: Not me.
Esther: Not me
Marcus: Not me
(I invison not me running around with scissors, gleefully cutting up my apron)
Esther points at Weston, Weston points at Esther, Marcus looks sympathetic towards both of them.
It is pretty easy to narrow down the suspects. It was Weston or Esther- most likely Esther. I have them both in their rooms until someone, anyone tells the truth.
Weston tried to get a reprieve. he comes downstairs and says, "Mommy, I want to tell you the truth." He hangs his head. "Esther cut the apron mommy."
I ask him him if he saw Esther cut the apron.
"No. but I didn't see myself do it either. So. It must be Esther."

Esther comes down.
"Mommy, I lied."
"About what."
"About saying no."
"You cut my apron."
"yes. I mean no."

The mystery of the cut apron strings remains unsolved, and it is my guess it will remain unsolved for all eternity.

It's still summer

In August my mind mentally slips into "Fall Mode". The weather outside is SCREAMING at me that It's still Summer. With the heat index at well over a hundred degrees, the kids and I trooped off for a TeenMOPS Pool Party.

The water was devine. Boy did it ever make me want an inground pool to lounge in these awful midwest summer days. My kids are swimming like fish now, which is a wonderful far cry from the beginning of the summer when they wouldn't even put their heads in the water. I really think children's brains are wired like light switches. Somehow, someone just has to switch those buggers on, and insto pretso, aha, there is light. Someone switched their swimming lights on, and away they go...
Here's a precious shot of one of our little babies. Her name is Porshe and her mom is a sweet 15 year old girl who is desperately trying to learn mommyhood. Everytime I am with these girls, I am inspired to be better. One of the girls does the hokey pokey with her baby every time she dresses him. "Put your right armin, put your left arm in, Put your arms in, and shake them all about." So tender and sweet. Her baby will know his right from left by toddlerhood.

Anyhow, I know I rambled a bit. Go forth and enjoy the rest of your summer. And if you are in St Louis...Stay in and enjoy your air conditioning.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Hi. My name is Becka. And I'm fat.

I'm not saying this for attention, or a chance to have 100 people tell me I am not fat. The fact is, I am obese, and becoming more so. I had a scare while visiting a frined in the hospital. Her roommate was ill with leg ulcers caused by diabetes. My dr had already told me that was the road I was headed down, but nothing quite got me off my rear like seeing that woman in the hospital. I have lots and lots, and even more excuses on why I am the size I am. I'm not going to make them- this time, I am just going to do something about it.
I joined weight watchers. Tuesday was my first meeting and I think, it was, perhaps, the most embarrassing day of my life. And now, I am putting all my shame out for all of blogland to see. I do this, because I am hoping to have some blog friends join me. I am hoping that I will not be the only one who is struggling. As I find recipes and foods that I love, I will post them. The "diet" I am on is called "Core". I can have all I need of anything from an approved list of foods. Bread is not on this list. Wahhh, neither is sugar. But fruits and veggies are. So are whole grains, and many meats. There is a great deal of food from every single food group and I can eat as much as I need to feel full without having to worry about counting anything. This works out perfect for me because I hate counting. I also happen to be a stickler for following rules (as long as they make sense to me).
To start off my confession week, here was my lunch today. Don't try to tell me this is a diet. This is gourmet stuff and it was beyond delish. I was full after this serving, but if I had still been hungry, I could have had another helping.Strawberry Spinach Salad with canadian bacon, soy cheese, black olives, and fat free vinagrette dressing. I was quite sceptical about this, as was Marcus who saw me take the first bite. 'that looks disgusting mom" (when did he stop say bugusting?) he said. I chewed. He watched. "Is it good?" he asked. 'ummhmm, pretty good." I replied. "Want a bite?" One great thing about my kids is that they will try almost anything. He fisnishes the only bite I am willing to share with him. He decrees that: "It's pretty good." Then he inform me that he has discovered a TRIPLE Homophone- "You, Ewe, U" all with vinagrette dripping down his chin.
One day I will be healthy. If I miss his wedding, or the birth of his child, it won't be because I died of fatness.

2+8, 5+5, 6+4, 7+3

Equals Ten. Ten incredible years married to my best friend. I could not have asked for a better ten years. In celebration, here is ten things I adore about Dustan.
1. He prays. Everyday. For me. Every prayer he says is like a sweet gift to me.
2. He hungers and thirts after God's word. He can so easily get lost in searching for Biblical knowlege. It inspires me to do the same.
3. He does dishes. And laundry. And vacuuming. And mowing.
4. He wants to be with me. He really likes me and would rather be with me than out with the guys.
5. He tolertates, with a great deal of patience, my many mood swings.
6. He reads to my children
7. He gives an incredible back rub.
8. He stopped wearing black socks with white shoes- just for me.
9. He is so good with money and because of that, our family has never been in need, or even in want.
10. (I think I will just leave this one unspoken)
We met in July of 1996. At church. We needed something to write our phone numbers on and grabbed these from the pews. I kept mine and Dustan kept his even though we didn't go on our first date until October. If you look closely, you will see that Dustan used his as a bit of a relationship journal. I am telling you...This man is a gift from God.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

We are winning the chore battle

My children are happily cleaning today. I am guessing that you are wanting to know my secret, so I will tell you.
It's CHORE WARS This is a super fun way to get your kids (and even your husband) to help out with the housework. You create adventures (chores) and when someone completes an adventure, they log on, claim the adventure, possibly fight a monster, and claim their gold. I plan to pay my kids one penny for every gold piece the earn. The admin can set the number of gold pieces earned for each adventure. They also earn experience points and at the end of the month, whoever has the most experience points will win a prize!!! My kids are begging to do the chores.

It's free, you have nothing to lose, so go there, try it out, and then come back and say thank you for the best thing that has ever happened to you!

Oh, My sister's family joined my party and we are competing against her. So far we are winning by a long shot. they must be lazy over there- haha.