Thursday, January 31, 2008

a new screen

My little computer has to go in for a new screen. Or a screen fix. So again...I'll be slipping into a black hole with no internet connection for awhile. Miss me everyone. :)


Politcal Sparks

The sparks have started flying around here. And it really makes me sad.

So here's my two cents...

1. Each politcal candidate is a person. A human. With opinions, pain, love, family, fears, thoughts, rights, embarrasments, skeletons, sucesses, struggles, and ideals. Just like me. So if I don't want them sitting around judging me or calling me names...I better mind my mouth.

2. Its ok to disagree with someone's plan, policy, thoughts, or decisions. But that does not make it ok to attack someone and spread untrue stories. Name calling does not help. In makes me sick.

3. You cannot write someone off without hearing what they have to say. You have to really really really listen and then disagree. You can't say, "I don't care to hear there opinions."

4. You have to let other people disagree from you. If your sister doesn't like your don't get to rag on her. She has a RIGHT to think how she chooses. It does not make her less of a Christian.

5. Democrats are not demons. Stop calling names. Democrats go to church, and they love Jesus, and do good things too. Stop being so cold toward other parties. If we want congress to work together and ignore the party line...we have to do it in our homes and neighborhoods.

6. Usually...there are many solutions to one problem. It doesn't HAVE to be your solution. Everyone has something good to contribute.

7. Don't critize someone whose job you have never had. You might have bothched it worse. Save the judging until you have actually stood there. Even if you really think you could do it better. You don't know until you live it.

8. Jesus stayed out of politics. He didn't leave us any directions for party lines or voting procedures. We have to do the best we can. Everyone. Whether they vote yes or no about homosexual marriages or sunday alchohol sales.

9. Jesus always preached reconciliation.

10. You can't force morality on anyone by a law. It doesn't work. That's why Jesus just loved people instead.

Now...everyone...PLAY NICE!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

but I like purple!

Addy has had some really exciting things going on at school lately. They celebrated Winnie the Pooh's birthday, working on Kansas day celebrations, had a special day for the 100th day of Kingergarten, had a really neat field trip to a care home singing oldie songs like Buffalo Gals.

Fun stuff. She brought home her first homework. They are really working hard on counting to 100 and writing it...and counting by 5s an 10s and...all things 100. She came home with a packet to draw 100 starts, write 100 words, fill in the missing numbers on hearts from 1 - 100, writing the numbers from 1 -100 by 5 and so on. Fun stuff.

Yesterday in the car:

Addy: Mom...tomorrow we have to wear our favorite Kansas team stuff.
Me: Like....K-State or KU?
Addy: No...the wildcats or KU.
Me: Yeah...the Wildcats are K-State.
Addy: We can wear our favorite team colors.
Me: So you are going to wear to Jayhawk stuff right?
Addy: No way...I want to wear purple and white. I like that better.
Me: Uhhh...well I think your family likes KU better.
Addy: So. I like purple. It's pretty.
Me: But we like KU.
Addy: So.

Me: I'm calling Grandpa.
Addy; fine.

Grandpa: Addy, the Jayhawk is a nice nice bird that would never hurt anyone. Wildcats are ugly and mean and would eat you. Jayhawks are so and white and blue.
Addy: So.
Grandpa: If you don't like the will have to hug me everyday and sit on my lap so I know you still love ME.
Addy: ok.

Me: So ok...I'll get a KU shirt to wear.
Addy: No. I want to wear purple.

Me: I'm calling Papa.
Neal: Oh...well I like K-State.
Me: *click*

Me: Ok...Addy...Sean and Jill and Maddy and Aiden all like KU. We can borrow a shirt from them.
Addy: No. Go Wildcats.
Me: That's it...Addy...KU is so much better...they are undefeated!
Addy: So. I like purple.
Me: Lets go to Sean's.

Sean: EEEEWWW the wildcats are yucky...gross...booooo...hissss...phhhhht.
Addy: *giggles*
Sean: KU is awesome! woot woot woot woot
Maddy: GO KU!
Aiden: Go wildcats ... I mean go jayhawks (he's still learning)
Me: Yeah Addy...KU has a better cheer.
Addy: Ok. Go KU.

awwww the power of peer pressure. She wore an awesome KU jersey to school today. And out the door to school today she turned and grinned and said...ROCK CHALK JAYHAWK!

The music teacher is a K-State fan...she wore a purple wig today. :) ahahahahha

But the principal told Addy what a good choice she had made while crossing the cross walk today. ahahahah I agree.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

at Laura's request

Philip Pullman. :)


Jill: I'm so glad we have dinner friends...and all kinds of stuff friends.
Me: Me tooooooooooo.

Today is Neal's birthday. He is 28. We got to celebrate with our amazing friends Jill and Sean. We finally finally finally got babysitters for all our kids and went out together. We had so much fun. The M. and W. households have been a little tense and maxed out the past few I wasn't sure if our date night would be a good idea or not. I nearly backed out at the last minute. senses returned and at least for me...I had an awesome night and it did me a world of good.

By the time we got on the highway to dinner...the car was full of 4 laughing friends...and I don't think we stopped laughing.

We had free dinner we all ate a silly silly amount of food. Neal got to have homemade tortillas and tacos today....and steak...and shrimp...and cheesecake.

Neal has all these amazing stories from work...and one time I laughed so hard cheesecake just about came out my nose.

We also at Neal's request went to see Cloverfield. He loved it...I was entertained.

Jill: time can we see a chick flick?
Neal: We didn't make you see Rambo with us last time...this WAS the chick flick.
Sean: Any movie that ends with I love a chick flick.

I have some new friends I'd like to tell you about...another time though...Penny and Harry Gillman.

Happy Birthday Neal...I hope this super fun evening is just the first of a year of fun and laughter and love. And you creeps me out that Heath Ledger was only 28. I don't know what I would ever do without you. You are my North Star.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Golden Compass thoughts

Jayme's first thoughts upon hearing about TGC.

-ooooh...that's bad news. that's not good. don't want any anti-christian stuff popping up in culture. must be careful.

Neal's first thoughts upon hearing about TGC.

--Oh great. There go Christians again. Jumping all over something that probably isn't worth jumping all over...making Christianity look bad. Before I get on the bandwagon...I better go read the whole trilogy myself...and then do some research on this Pullman dude.

Jayme's next thoughts:

--Oh. Well..yeah...that makes more sense than just freaking out. Yes. Phillip Pullman is an atheist. But did you know that he stands on that position because of organized religion...(hypocritical Christians)...rather than because of his feelings toward God? You know...hateful power hungry Christians who love to get all political rather than being Jesus? Don't dare try to tell me those people aren't out there. Let me tell you. I've lived there...and I have the T-shirt.

So...what happens when Pullman gets tired of being told what to think and believe by nasty people claiming Christianity...writes a book to make a point...and then Christians freak out and declare him unsafe without reading his stuff??? Ah...Pullman wins and Christians look bad. Sigh. that I have read are my opinions.

1. Pullman is an amazing story teller. Amazing. His story is awesome. Its a tale of a brave little girl doing her best to find her way using love, strength, compassion, truth, and values to guide her. The story is rich with fictional cultures and peoples. The sacrifices in the story move you. Its a great great great story.

2. Pullman did a poor job of creating an allegory. I had to have Neal explain to me what he was really trying to say. It's a stretch. And soooo not threatening.

3. Pullman never attacks the nature of God is this first book. He might in others...I haven't read them and won't claim to know. Pullman does attack organized religion...especially the Catholic church. I don't blame him.

4. I have heard...from Neal...and he's pretty reliable...that later in the trilogy one of the characters does kill God. By reaching out and touching him and all his particles explode into nothingness. have got to be kidding me.

5. I know that my God is all powerful, all knowing, the creator of all things good, wiser than me, everywhere, gracious, compassionate, loving, gentle, jealous, real, living, never agings, never sleeping, never failing, and giving. Why would I ever be threatened by this book and some sad man's views of religion and maybe God. I'm not. Jesus is so much bigger than TGC.

6. I would use TGC as a tool with my kids if they were teach them about how sad it is when church isn't safe for people, how lost people are without Christ to guide their minds and hearts, to remind them how big God really is, to shine the beauty of Christ into thier minds. It might even be an interesting place to discuss the nature of our souls...and how they were made to follow God's plan and how we need him so badly.

7. I'm ashamed of how some people claiming Christ have been so threatened and freaked out about TGC. It isn't "bad news". Its news we need to hear and then respond in love knowing how awesome our God really is.

8. If anyone ever tells me again how TGC is a bad story...I'm going to tell exactly why I think its a good story. Both for its literary value and its value beyond. I would also suggest they pray for Pullman to find someone who can demonstrate the true nature of Christ to him...and pray for the souls of those who must have hurt him so badly in the name of Christ.

"If we are the body...why aren't his arms reaching...why aren't his hands healing...why aren't his feet going."

and..................I cut 6 inches off my hair today. I'll post a picture sometime. :)

Friday, January 25, 2008

vroom vroom

Ellie: Mamma, Mamma, I got pick-ups.
Me: Ok.
Ellie: *frowning at me* No...I got pick-ups.
Me: Thats great. Can you drive them over in the living room. (I was distracted.)
Ellie: *frowning aLOT at me*
Me: OH...You have the HIC-UPS!!!!!! Wanna drink of water???

Silly me.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Four Very Important Things!

1. The screen on my lap top...( in the borrowed Stuck in the Middle lap top) went all black and I couldn't see anything...and I FINALLY! got it hooked up to another moniter so now I can see to type and read and B-L-O-G!!!!!!!!!!!! I am back...from outer space!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2. MY RIGHT-WING RAIDER IS BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OH HOW I MISSED YOU! I think my blogging is now complete with you reading it. :) Kiss those babies for me.

3. I have finished another book...The Golden Compass. It deserves its own post. I will write about it later.

4. My next book ( #5) is the King of Mulberry Street. I also now have a complete list of my 888 challenge books...and as soon as I can figure out how to post them on the side of my blog...they will be up for you all to see and keep track of with me. Because deep all care. I'm sure of it.

So welcome back to my world...I'll be posting more soon!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

888 update

A few days ago I finished my #3 book...The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathon Stroud.

Its the first of a trilogy. It was a really fun book to read...much easier to stomach than my last pick. It was still pretty dark...being about a young magician named Nathaniel who has been apprenticed to a not so nice or nurturing old grumpy dude. He lets his incredibly smart and talented apprentice get humiliated in front of some other adults...and the rest of the story is about Nathianel's handling of that situation.

It was a cleverly written book...with a very witty djinni (I think something like a genie) telling part of the story complete with his sarcasm in footnotes.

Me: Neal, you should read this book. It was good.
Neal: Why? Its not like its educational or enlightening. What's the value?
* which is total teasing *
Me: Just because its fun doesn't mean it doesn't have any value.
Neal: Mock-snubbing -- I'm getting my own books to read.
Me: You're just jealous because I'm going to do this really cool challenge. And I've already read 3 books and you haven't read any.
* which is not true...he has read as many as I have...maybe even more)*
Neal: groan...I'm going to the library. And you won't make it past 20 books.
Me: Ohhhhhh...its on now buddy.

Our house is fun sometimes. :)

My next read is the Golden Compass. We'll cross that bridge later. :)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Awesomely Cool Birthday Cake Pictures

This is the so cool cake that my mom made for Ellie. Made...not bought. She did all that frosting tip stuff and coloring herself. Isn't she quite the artist! Everyone that saw it just raved...

Ellie: The Dora cake is so COOL! Yummy!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ellie has just seen the pictures on my blog.

Ellie: It's my DORA cake! YES!

the many faces of Ellie

click on the pic to see it bigger....i found it interesting

Monday, January 14, 2008


Right two girlies are sitting at a little picnic table. They are eating fruit loops.

Addy: Oh...I ate all my load of food. I need more.
Ellie: I need a purple!
Addy: Scoooop it up....
*at this point I notice she is scooping up one fruit loop at a time onto the point of a sharpened colored pencil.*
Me: Addy...sigh...why don't you flip that pencil over and use the not pointy end?
Addy: They don't fit on the other end. You stick this part in the loop...put it in your mouth...and eat it off. Haven't you ever used a fork like that mom?

I sit here trying to decide whether or not I think this method of eating loops in dangerous in any way. It seems to my mommy instinct...that it is...but I can't quite put my finger on why. It isn't lead...isn't even graphite. They aren't chewing on the pencil. The pencil isn't near their eyes. They are sitting not running. They aren't fighting with the pencils. And aren't forks sharp?

What is wrong with this picture. I can't come up with a good reason to make them stop! Its actually a little creative.

Things like this drive me ... well ... loopy. I think I'll just go do some laundry and leave the creative eaters to it. :)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

888 update

In an effort to keep from Sean from skipping this post:

Jayme: Hey ... we don't really need all these books do we?
Neal: YES!
Jayme: But they just take up space!
Neal: But they mean something to me!
Jayme: What could Clive Cussler (or whatever) possible MEAN to you?
Neal: It just does. Can't we keep them?
Jayme: How about it a box in the closet?
Neal: Groan.

Well...don't tell him...but I'm a little sad we won't be keeping all the books I read in this challenge. They are a little like trophies. Stories you read become a little piece of know? Oh well. I am grateful I have the library to keep me from spending a fortune on books...but still.

I finished book #2 -- The Kite Runner.

It is a story set in Afghanistan...and is the story of two little boys living in Kabul right before it gets really ugly politically there.

I talked to my Aunt Shirley about this book right after I started it. She told me that it took her two tries to read the book...because it was so painful she had to put it down and come back to it later. I have to was NOT a fun book to read. And not because it was boring or poorly written. It was because the characters were soooo real and it hurt me to watch their painful stories unfold. I have never had that experience with a book before. It actually hurt me to read it.

I will NOT be seeing the movie...because I don't think I can bear to watch it...or live that story again.

HOWEVER...Now that I am several days removed from reading it...I can say that it was a really really really good book. And even a good story. And I'm glad I read it. I will still cringe when I hear news stories about this area of the country...sigh. But I am glad I read it...and I would encourage others to read it...but not without a bunch of chocolate to counter effect the depression. Something I was sorely missing while I read it. :)

On a happier ... or a least more fun side...I declared I needed a story with sunshine and rainbows and picked up book #3-- the Amulet of Samarkand. And it is fun...but...not sunshine and rainbows. Its kind of a dark book as well...but at least it is fun to read. More on it later.

Friday, January 11, 2008


My little pixie-imp has turned 3.

It's crazy. I can't believe it.

On one hand...I can't believe how fast it has big she suddenly much of a fun little kid she is turning out to be.

On the other seems like yesterday we brought her home from the hospital and I was google eyed over the little baby on my bed.


Sigh...I don't really have babies anymore. Just little-big kids. Oh...I know...3 and 5...they are just babies...but not brand new babies...or even so little babies...or even toddling around babies. Little-big kid babies.

Amanda: Well...its time for another one.
Me: Yeah well...I'll have to talk to Neal about that.

For now...I will enjoy being the mom of little-big kids. No diapers, no bottles, no having to be constantly monitoring the hand to mouth thing. I have two fun girlies who are big enough to really play together. To giggle tell stories to each ride bikes together. And that my EXACTLY...why there is an Ellie in the first place. :)

More on the big day and the party later. :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Happy Birthday!

This is dedicated to my bff Jill who is celebrating her special day today.

I have had lots of friends in my life who are good friends. Lots of friends in my life that have been good good friends. But just a precious few who have been really truly deeply wonderful friends of the heart.

What is the difference you say?

When your kid is sick a good friend says "I'm sorry".
A wonderful friend says, "Here...have my last bottle of cough syrup."

When your car is trashed, a good friend says, "Gross."
A wonderful friend says, "Ha! That's nothing, look in my back seat" and then shows you so you don't feel as bad.

When you don't have a computer, a good friend says, "Can't wait until you get one."
A wonderful friend says, "Here have my extra laptop...and here is our encryption key."

When its nice outside, a good friend tells you about her time at the park.
A wonderful friend invites you to share a picnic.

When its cooler outside in the fall, a good friend call you from under a blanket.
A wonderful friend invites you share a picnic and blankets.

A good friend shares her recipes with you.
A wonderful friend brings you her best cookies every time she makes them.

A good friend politely ignores the topic of finances.
A wonderful friend groans with you on rent day...knowing you are calculating how many times this week you have to eat mac and cheese.

A good friend makes sure her kids are neat and tidy and polite around you.
A wonderful friend look at their naked kid on the stairs and says, "I'm glad its you that saw that."

A good friend cleans up before you come over.
A wonderful friend just pushes the piles over and invites you in to her real world.

A good friend likes to hear stories about your kids and how they grow and change.
A wonderful friend is right there with your kids, pulling their teeth and then funding the tooth fairy.

A good friend lends you a cup of sugar.
A wonderful friend lends you her sugar, her eggs, 1/2 her milk for the year, her kitchen towels, kitchen cleaner, tupperware, pots and pans, spaghetti sauce, peanut butter, and toilet paper...and never asks for them back...knowing she'll get them back when she comes over to ask for jalapenos or soy sauce.

A good friend gives your kid a drink.
A wonderful friend sends your kid home with a sippy cup knowing you are the worst possible custodian of sippys.

A good friend doesn't mention she is going out to fave restaurant without you.
A wonderful friend tells you and then brings you some Italian Nachos.

A good friend will you call you back if she misses your call during dinner.
A wonderful will jump up from her plate to give you a hug and listen to all your drama.

A good friend knows your kids names.
A wonderful friend is a delight for you kids and they run to her and give her hugs.

A good friend will call you on their lunch break.
A wonderful friend asks you to "help" them clean a house...cleans circles around you...does more than 1/2 the work...then split the money with you anyway.

A good friend says, "I'll let you go so you can get ready."
A wonderful friend says, "Here I"ll do hair."

A good friend says, "It's time for dinner, I'll talk to you later."
A wonderful friend says, "Hey, I made all this Italian want 1/2?"

...and I haven't even scratched the surface of all the amazing ways Jill is a wonderful friend.

I'm so thankful to have her in my life. Have a great day...and a wonderful year. Love ya!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Mr. Sandman...bring me some sand the truck load.

Neal and I have really been struggling lately to get Ellie in bed. Or at least to stay in bed. The bedtime routine is really Neal's domain and the girls will tell you flat out, "We don't like Mama to put us to bed. Mama doesn't do it right. Papa does it better." Which is totally fine by me. I love that they share that special time...Neal works so hard...I'm glad that a part of almost each day is just for them. And I'm a big fat pushover. If I was in charge...the girls would be sleeping in our bed...get gallons of milk in the night...and all the lights would be on. I will cave every time--selling out to whatever gets me sleep in the moment versus healthy sleep patterns.

Not that our kids never get to sleep with us...they are welcome if they are sick...or have a bad night. And as long as you don't wet the bed...they can have as much water as they want. And Addy has been sleeping with a flashlight on to sooth her nighttime fears. Neal's better at the long run routines...and I'm better with the compassion when we need it.

It's a good system.

But lately...I don't think Ellie would stay in her bed if we duck taped her there.

Ellie was telling me the story today of the bedtime drama last night.

Ellie: and...Papa pick me up off the floor...and I cried and I jumped and jumped...and he still made me get in bed...and I cried and I cried and I SNORTED. And then Papa took my yellow Care Bear lovie and my black puppy lovie...and my fuzzy blankie. And I cried and cried.
Me: Were you being naughty last night?
Ellie: (head hung down) Yeah.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Red Tent

I am so glad I decided to do the 888 challenge.

The first book I read was one I picked randomly and I don't remember why or where I saw it.

The Red Tent by Anita Diamant was a very very very good choice. I even say that knowing full well that out there a lot of people find the book despicable. It is a fictional imagined back story of the biblical Dinah. It not a true story. It was written as fiction to be read as fiction. Some people can't get past that...and I think for the same reasons I LOVED it.

It paints the biblical "giants" as human. Well...they WERE! While almost none of her stories about Jacob, Leah, Rachel, Dinah, Joseph...ect. are factual...they are realistic. They were people. Mothers, lovers, daughters, siblings, cooks, workers. They felt hate, fear, jealousy, sexual urges, love. They did foolish things, sinful things, honorable things, sexual things. The same crazy thought processes that run through my head ran through theirs. The same battle between doing what I want and "taking the high road" was raging in their minds and hearts. They had to live in their culture and think through their religion too. I love this. I don't mind a "giant" being painted as horny...illiterate...blemished. In fact...I LIKE it!

Just because the Bible doesn't tell us everything about a story or a person doesn't mean it didn't happen. Yeah...Jacob had 12 sons. But each son meant nine months of pregnancy. 12 birth stories...12 first steps...12 mothers agonizing and rejoicing over the childhoods of each one. And one daughter. Who must have been loved and doted on...who must have been spoiled...who must have had her hair brushed a million times...who must have been kissed and held and had dreams and loves. She was a whole person...not JUST what we read about he in a few verses.

It is extremely graphic. Not pornographic mind you...just graphic. The story could be just as well called a story of childbirth, or midwives of history, or ... the rituals of menstruation...oh's called the Red Tent. As in...the tent where the woman would go during their monthly cycles or to give birth...and the rite and ritual that went with it. I found this information and insight to be very intriguing. I would imagine however men might be very uncomfortable. Neal and I discussed then and he thought maybe those parts could be skipped. I'm not sure. It's pretty crucial to the depth of the story. And I LIKED it!

In another sense its a story of motherhood...and when I finished I was reminded of the honor of being a mother. And in the moment where I held the book and its story was still fresh and ringing in my mind...I felt like generations of women were behind me honoring my motherhood. And the best thing I got out of my first book was the reminder that being a mom is the best job ever...and there is good reason I chose to be a mom and be a mom only. And EVERY sacrifice has been worth it.

I'm reading The Kite Runner next...which I imagine to be just about the polar opposite of The Red Tent...I'll keep you posted.

resolution progress

So far...really really good.

I have dutifully cleaned out my linen closet, 2 bathroom drawers, and underneath the downstairs bathroom sink.

I have had very very very little sugar. Only a few fruit snacks and some jelly on a sandwich today.

Addy and I have read 6 books...and Ellie and I have read at least that many.

I have finished my first book for the 888 challenge.

Other good things for today:

The girls and I played two rounds of "Old Maid" today--and we had a great time. I can totally remember playing that game with my grandma over and over and over...and now that I'm the grown up trying to get my girls to understand the rules, not showing your cards, keeping the secret of who has the maid, and how to hold your many cards...I am reminded of what a patient and loving grandma she was.

My contacts also finally came in today. My amazing, kind, giving and shiny husband gave up his lunch hour today to deal with super rude lady at the the optical place to pick them up for me! (I'm pretty sure that was a run on sentence.) I have been wearing my glasses for EVER! I couldn't help but think that I have gotten my face back. And I can see the leaves on the trees across the street. :)

My friend Michelle finally updated her blog on her baby girls first Christmas. This was fun for me...watching her be a mom....she shared a lot of my early mommy moments...and I'm so happy for her. Sadly...its a private i can't share it with anyone else. And I often want to comment on her blog to tell her how neat I think her baby story is...but I can't...there can be no linking from other readers of her blog to mine. So...this is my shout out to her...I'm so excited about Em's first Christmas and I am so proud of how you are being a mom. :) I miss our friendship.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

thank you doctor, again.


Me: Tomorrow...I have two goals. I'm going to the dr. and I'm going to the grocery store.
Jill (an experienced mom of 3): That will take up your whole day.
Me: I know.


2:15 -- I am in the dr.'s office alone while the kids are at Nana's.
2:16 -- Nana calls to tell me Addy is crying that her ear hurts.
2:17 -- I get called into exam room. (Gotta call you back mom)
2:20 -- have sinus infection.
2:25 -- Nana? Does her ear still hurt? Addy says no.
2:30 -- I am at the pharmacy getting my antibiotic. Phone rings. Addy is crying.
2:31 -- Hello..yes I was just at your office...can you work my daughter in?

4:01 -- Yes...she has an ear infection and a sinus infection. Here is a antibiotic.
4:30 -- Long line at pharmacy.
5:00 -- In the car giving Addy the first of 14 days worth of drugs.

6:00 -- Back home settled...never made it to the grocery store.

I'm tellin you...when you are a can only get ONE thing done a day. :)
Neal has the day off tomorrow. I'm try to do more then.

I have also decided I am never ever going anywhere without a large bottle of children's motrin.