Random Crap: July Edition

uncle-sam-4th-of-july-american-flag-vintage-postcardI’m not hating on July like I usually do. All my life, July has been my least favorite month, and yet this year, I’m appreciating her hot self. The year turning feels good, and even though it’s hot, she brings me my Hydrangea bushes in bloom, berry picking season, jam-making and sparklers in the backyard. I think I may be growing up.

Simple Eco Shoes sent Abby some shoes with the deal that I review them, and how they hold up. They are not paying me, and I am free to write however I honestly feel- that’s the caveat with any review I agree to. I will not be bought or sold- you get what you get when you send me something. And hey, free shoes! Look for the review next week.

Yesterday I found a tutorial on how to make neckties, and you would NOT believe how awesomely easy it is. The boys are stoked- and they both picked through my fabric piles looking for the coolest fabric. Beanies has American flags all over it, and Jeffrey’s has dragons. It’s mostly hand-sewing- and I got the link from someone (can’t remember the link- it if was you let me know?) who commented here.

Just finished reading Rough Stone Rolling, and have a tremendous intellectual crush on Richard Bushman. It’s not a light read, but it’s worth it.

Also just finished reading Mormon Enigma, and have a new, profoundly deep respect for Emma. Holy cow. The woman was made of fine, fine things. Mixed with steel.

Next up: David O. McKay’s bio. Not light reading, but it’s sitting like a brick on my nightstand waiting its turn.

The kids broke the arm off the rocker in my office. This particular rocking chair came across the plains in a Conestoga wagon on the Oregon trail, and was rocked by my husbands great great grandmother. My Mother-in-Law gave it to me a few years ago, and I’m sick that my kids managed to mangle it. It’s fixable- it broke on a joint, and I think with some TLC, glue and some new dowels it will be fine. At least I hope so…

Our air conditioning is broken. It worked fine, and then kapow, when the switch is flipped: nothing. Nada. Kaput. The house fan still works, but neither the heat nor the cool will come on. Hopefully it’s just a thermostat thing- because we can really afford a repair bill right now? Nope. We’ll just be hot. Turn on the fans and pull down the shades. Crap.

Last night for dinner I made Chicken Tika Masala. Oh, stars, it was gooooooood. If you want the recipe, it’s another one of Ree’s. Give it a shot- it’s easy and so fantastically good. The boys turned up their noses, but Abby ate a whole plate. That’s my spicy girl!

We’re not doing much for the Independence Day weekend. My whole family down in California is up at the Lake near Yosemite where we always go for vacations. They’d have so much more fun if we were there. Instead, we will be playing with Sparklers in the backyard. Ear your hear out, family! Who wants a lake at Yosemite when you can have a sparkler and a five-gallon bucket of safety water in the backyard? I mean really!

I wish I had a clothesline in the backyard.

I’m making Indian cheese today. What? Mo informs me not everyone makes cheese and the cavalier way I talk about some things is just funny.  Everyone doesn’t make cheese? She is laughing at me. I mean, I’m not stupid- I know not everyone makes cheese- but what’s the big deal? I love Indian food, and I need some cheese. What gets me, for all the fine cuisine of the Indian subcontinent, they only ever invented ONE kind of cheese. It’s called panneer. It’s awesome, and easy to make, and I cannot find it any markets around here. So I make my own. It’s not rocket science. And it’s delicious!

BIG bowl of Bing cherries sitting on my counter, just waiting for something fantastic to happen…

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Random Crap: Tuesday

The amazingness of my Nauvoo trip is lingering. I’m reading Emma’s biography, and completely submersed in the history of Missouri and Illinois. It’s not an easy read, and not for the faint-of-heart, that’s for sure, but I find the rich texture of real history to be invigorating and satisfying. I wouldn’t give the book to just anyone, but if you want some well-written and thoroughly researched history, and you’re solid in your beliefs, this is a great book.

My bruises and scrapes are healing miraculously fast, especially considering how terrible they were. Cool.

Jeffrey gave a talk in church Sunday, and for the first time, he didn’t crawl under the podium. He has always been so brave and excited to talk in the microphone until he gets up there and sees all the kids’ faces looking at him- this time, he wrote everything out himself, and he did great. Bean, on the other hand, runs up to the microphone at every opportunity and yelps random things out. He loves the sound of his own honking.

My schedule is filling up- I’ve been contacted about two (two!) paying writing gigs. How awesome is that? I’ve got some paintings that are going out in the next week or so, and a local cabinet maker called this morning to see if I could help him with a mural next month. It’s money, and I am SO grateful!

We’re having mixed success on the potty front with Abby. Potty=1, Abby=1. Odds are slowly moving in our favor. Gross-out moment of the week? She was naked post-bath and went in the boys’ room. While stepping over a pile of Lego (could it have been anywhere else?) she pooped. The boys completely flipped out, Bean was gagging, Jeffrey was wigging. David grabbed her and ran in the bathroom, and I quietly threw way a small fortune in Lego. Kids are so gross sometimes.

Our domestic bird population has remained stable for the last few weeks. Glory be.

Now I have to turn my thoughts and planning towards Houston. Holy. Cow. It’s going to be fun, and I have a lot to do, but I feel oddly confident. It’s very exciting.

Random Crap: Sunshine Edition

Seems like lately, my whole life is random crap. There’s not a lot of synergy or completeness coming my way… Much like that sentence.

There’s a reason the international symbol for Autism is a puzzle piece. Daily I have to rethink and regroup how we deal with Bean. Sometimes it’s exhausting. Like yesterday. I met with his “team”- which consists of three teachers, a psychologist, an OT and a PT, as well as a resource specialist and a supervisor from the school district. All of these people, trying to figure out one. small. boy. He’ll be continuing on in the AIM program for kindergarten, as well as the six-week AIM summer program.  They know Spectrum kids can’t survive the free-fall of summer. Safety net in place. Check.

Four straight days of sunshine! I hesitate to state it, but I think spring might actually be here. Now, I want to be held to it if it snows tomorrow, okay? Get ready to be shocked- I’ve actually been doing some yardwork. Three benedryl seems to do the trick, and if I avoid the rose bushes, it helps too. Granted, I pass out from the drugs after about half an hour, but still, it’s progress! And shhhhhh…. but I may, may even like yardwork  just a tiny bit. Now SHHHHHH!

All three of my fat-headed kids outgrew their bike helmets. ALL THREE! Abby can’t even get Bean’s on- She’s like Dora. Football head. So, I have to figure out how to get three new helmets…

I found my favorite water bottle in the back of the burb! I find I drink a whole lot more water if I haul a bottle around with me all day. Whatever…

I’m thinking of planting tomatoes this year. I haven’t since Bean picked every. single. green. tomato. on the vine and planted them all. It took me a while to figure out what was going on there… He thought more tomato plants would grow.

It’s almost garage sale season! I’ve been saving my pennies and have a small stash of cash squirrelled away- I can hardly wait. I get all tingly inside when I think about it.

Got the car smogged and registered today. Credit cards rock. Sigh… Had fun explaining to Jeffrey what the guy was doing while he molested our car, took my money, and gave me a valuable little sticker back. Fun.

Speaking of Jeff, he read over 300 minutes last month and got a free pizza at Pizza Hut. It was such a rare treat around here that he ate it in the car so he wouldn’t have to share. Meh, he earned it, and Abby would have pestered him to pieces.

Abby has seventeen days till the diapers are done. I solemnly swear, the diapers in this this house are the last pack she gets. Her third birthday (I KNOW!) is on the 25th, and that’s P-Day. I have a feeling I’m going to be cleaning up a lot of pee…

Life is so much happier now that Bean can swing. I can see him out the window as I type, pumping his little legs as hard as they’ll go, peacefully swinging towards the sky and back again. The other night I laid in bed trying to figure out how to make an indoor swing. I think I can do it…

David just got home from the post office- and walked in with another bird. You read that right. That makes three. My husband is insane. At least it’s not a puppy, right? Right? Right…

AWOL: Spring is in the Air

Things have been insane around here. Beanie is off for TWO weeks for spring break, and Jeffrey is off next week, but they have half days all this week due to parent/teacher conferences. Why even bother? 9-12? It’s more of a hassle than it’s worth.

Abby is sowing some wild oats. She has always had a predilection for coloring on the walls, and all crayons and markers have to be stored up high- like, top shelf high- only someone left a crayon down. There are large red crayon happy faces on the side of Phoebe my buffet, and behind the door in her room. Honestly, (and I know this makes my mom absolutely nuts) I really don’t care- the faces are so stinking cute- she just figured out how to make people, and I love them. Besides, they’ll come off with a magic eraser. I scolded her and put her on a time out. Meh.

At the RS diner the other night, I had the best mac and cheese of my life. I’m scrounging to get the recipe, and as soon as I have it, I’ll share. Seriously. The best.

My piano lessons are going fantastic. Did I tell you that I was taking piano? My backyard neighbor teaches piano, and one day, she gave me a date and time and said “Be there!”. She’s gifting the lessons, and then I’m teaching Jeffrey. I’ve gone from not even knowing where/what middle-C is, to being able to read simple sheet music and plunk out a song! In only a little over a month! It’s fantastic, and I love love love it. A whole new world has opened up. I never realized why the chorister waved her hand around, what a metronome was for, or why some notes went up and down. And now, I do!

Making some steps in my business. Scary, but exciting too. When the time is right, I’ll post details. Getting vetted right now for a trade show. That’s all I can say…

We’re trying to decide if Beanie is ready to mainstream into regular Kindergarten with as IEP, or if he is better off staying at the AIM school. The teachers are going to pow-wow next week and decided. I told them whatever helps him most is my plan.

Congratulations to my sister-in-law who just passed a big test to be certified in her nursing profession. She studied hard, and she did a great job. We’re proud of her.

More to come- things are in the works, and if you hear some hammering and sawing around here, just ignore it. It’s all part of the changing season!

Random Crap, Weekend Edition

I’ve got five kids this weekend. Mo’s boys are here, because poor sweet Mira is in the hospital with a nasty tummy bug. She’s OK, and I’m sure Mo will update when she gets home, but for now, my house is a house of chaos and testosterone. Abby is doing her best to keep up with the raging river of boy-ness. It’s all Lego, all the time.

I love hospital soap. It’s a strange obsession I’ve kept hidden for years, but yesterday, while sitting with Mira, the smell of the hospital soap was like the best perfume. I must have washed my hands 10 times. It reminds me of when my babies were born. I’m not talking about the industrial smell of hospitals as a whole, but the antiseptic, clean, non-perfume smell of the hand soap the doctors use… So I finally wrote down the name and ordered some. I’m so excited. It’s all mine! Mine, I say!

Our visit with Auntie Heather was fantastic. My children adore her, and, well, I do too. We had planned for a tea party, but I just can’t seem to keep my life in order enough to pull off my plans most days. The tea party went by the wayside, but we did have some nice meals, made some stuff, and just hung out. It was quality and quantity time. Heather and I even got to take off by ourselves for a movie night.

Stella is a boy. We are still calling him Stella. It makes him fit in with the family.

I’ve got a backlog of paintings right now, and I got an order for textile patterns yesterday. It’s not much money, but I have to fill it- by next week. So if you’re waiting, per normal, I’m sorry and I promise I haven’t forgotten about you.

Beanie had his IEP yesterday for Kindergarten. He is going to be continuing on with the AIM program for next year, too. I know he really wants to go to Jeffrey’s school, but his team of teachers say he’ll benefit from another year of extra support and OT/PT/Speech. It’s hard to argue with the growth he’s had, so we’ll go with their recommendations.

Two bunches of broccoli stems in your trash can stink up your entire garage for two weeks, just in case you didn’t know.

We’re in month 14 for unemployment.  Somehow, some way, still hanging on. I try not to think too hard about the ‘how” and just keep riding the wave.

The car goes in to the collision center next week. We opted for going through the insurance, even though the the girl’s dad wanted keep the insurance out of it. That seemed a little too risky for us. We also needed a rental car that holds three car-seats- and staying private ran us the risk of being stuck with that bill- and we need another bill lie… well, you know. So, sorry, Dad Guy. I understand wanting to keep the premium down. Really, I do. Maybe you should have a chat with your daughter about driving while on her cell phone. She’s lucky we didn’t file a police report.

Remember the Birthday Banners? I made pink ones for Valentines/St Hallmark/Tea Party Day. They’re cute, and still hanging over my dining room table. It’s a little bright color in an otherwise too long winter gray season.

Watching the Oscars tomorrow night. It’s the only award show I care about… And I use “care” will flippancy and abandon.

Up this week: Taxes! Woo-hooo!