Wednesday, December 18, 2013

what up, wednesday?

Ruby ran home from the bus stop this morning upset because James and his friend were teasing her.  Nicky was sitting on the couch while I was hugging her (she was crying) and said, "Yooks yike she needs some DS time, mom!" 

Haha, DS time is the cure for all ails.  :)

So Nick and I stayed home all day on Monday, great day!  We did errands all day yesterday (and had lunch at Noodles - Nick's pick), great day!  We went to the library and a thrift store today, then came home for a nap (Nicky) and some Downton Abbey (me, just started it), great day!  Tomorrow is still unknown but I am assuming it will be great because, why not?  No day care this week for Nicky as his sitter's house has lice.  blech.  But him not being able to go last week?  Blessing.  It is odd being a mom for so many days in a row.  I am out of mom practice.  I found myself thinking of craft ideas.  WHAT?? 

I made a delicious soup last night and none of my kids liked it.  Not even my good eater, James.  He politely told me I should wait to try new recipes until they are older and their palates are more advanced.  I let them eat all the cherry tomatoes they could and poured myself a wine spritzer. 

I watched Nashville on my tablet (got a new tablet! cancelled cable!) last night and it was so fun!  We got a new router & modem today so hopefully it will work even slicker now.  The Bachelor starts soon, can't wait!  The only thing I really miss is Bravo and I can buy whatever I want if I really want it on Amazon.  We shall see.  Cable is really only a phone call away. (if I need it.  so comforting.)  (we also have netflix and amazon prime so how much do you need????)  (lots.)

peace out.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

shut up. pictures.

Yesterday was a good day. Nicky and I stayed home all day and it was pretty relaxing. 

One of my kids' favorite things I did for them for Christmas was get the fleece blankets and sew them pillowcases a couple of years ago.  This year it was the first thing they asked when they got home on decorating day..."Did you do our beds?"  (I hadn't, of course.  It was the one thing I DIDN'T do, of course.  Of course, I did it the very next day.  :)  )

So for my nieces I did the same thing.  One trick pony!
I love them, though.  And especially loved using the pillowcase to wrap the blanket in.  Genius, if I do say so myself.  (see also: lazy)  (sorry for the yellow lighting.  they really do not look like I peed on them.)
This was my "helper."
I also made another batch of cookies, put a sh*tload of laundry away (of mine), shoveled a lot, and did a little ebay work.  We had a family size box of mac & cheese for supper with left over pulled pork and you know what?  It was gooooood.  (and easy.)

Today I have my van loaded up with things to be delivered & returned and a list of things to do and buy.  My boys need haircuts SO badly and today is Nicky's turn.

It was so nice having Patrick home last week.  I know that was an abrupt switch but I had to say it.  I missed him.  A lot.  He was pretty deeply engrossed in that project for his brother (see also: crabby) and last week it was like having my old husband back.  I really DO still like him!  :)

Here are a couple pictures from the Christmas program last week:

That's James in the red.  His bff Matthew is next to him with his hair in a mowhawk.  :)  (I know it's hard to see.)  Also, I had to pay Ruby a dollar to wear that skirt.  I was going to pay her $2 to wear my favorite skirt but it was a little too big.


Monday, December 16, 2013


Good morning to is this Monday going?  So far so good here.  Except for Nicky calling me stupid and James having a fit (again) this morning about losing his electronic time for the week, it's been good.  :) 

I am trying to decide what to do with myself today.  My options are:  sew, bake, wrap, pick up our bedroom or go shopping.  :)  It's a tough choice!  The days go so fast. 

Our week ended up being a good one.  My cold only lasted a day and while Nicky didn't go back to day care (he kept coughing), Patrick and I took him to breakfast on Thursday at one of my favorite places and had a really nice time.  I went out alone Thursday night to finish up some shopping at Trader Joe's and on Friday we all went to Frozen after early release.  (it was okay...not a favorite of mine.)  Friday night I met my friends for a beer and ended up staying out until 1am.  I didn't drink much so I wasn't hung over on Tuesday, just a little tired.  I baked cookies all morning, took a nap, and went out for a walk in the evening.  Sunday was church, more cookies, cleaning our FILTHY house (with my mom's help) and the Survivor finale.  :)  We love Survivor.  Patrick thinks I should try out.  haha. 

Something I want to remember about Nick right now.  He imagines stuff & plays with his body and hands all the time.  He will hold up his little hand and type on it like he's using a phone.  He will ask me for a pencil (imaginary) to write on his notepad (palm.)  He will strap his (pretend) rocket boosters onto his feet (which takes him a minute, they are not easy to get on) and blast off around the room.  He will shoot us, of course.  He flies finger jets and throws punches at me that turn into hugs at the last minute.  (this was after he gave me a real punch one day.)  I am not sure but I suspect Patrick has a role in all of this.  Patrick, for years, since before we had kids, makes these pretend spiders with his hands to play with us.  Nicky loves them and I can't help but think it showed Nicky how much fun he can have just with his hands.  I love it.  I hope he keeps it up for a while.  :)  It's so fun to watch. 

Right now he is begging me for his DS.  :)

I am trying to pretend there are not jam thumbprints in the freezer.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

the best laid plans

Patrick is home on vacation this week and I had our week all planned out.  HA!  Even as I did, though, I somehow knew in the back of my mind that it wouldn't go like that.  I had planned for Nick to go to daycare for 3 days this week so Patrick and I could have a whole kid-free day together and I would still have 2 work days.   I suddenly came down with a bad cold yesterday afternoon (Nicky had one, too, but is on the down side of his) and then realized the kids have early release on Friday.  So things are not exactly as I had planned but it's all good.  I think it's like when you get sick once you finally go on vacation...I finally knew I could take it easy this week so my body gave in.  Patrick has been great...making dinner and doing homework with the kids (my normal jobs so this makes it like a vacation for me, too!), running out to get kleenex and cheap wine.  :)  He also shampooed our living room carpet, put the tree up and picked out a dishwasher. 

We have been without a dishwasher for a month.  I'm kind of sick of it but do not have dishpan hands because I always wear rubber gloves.  So there is that.  And I am ever so thankful that we got rid of that piece of crap we had.  Amen.

Anyways.  I felt like crap when I woke up today but feel slightly better now.  Nicky is watching Sesame Street and I might wrap some presents.

I am so happy we got some snow this week.  It is so pretty out.  It's cold, true, but looks so much nicer out there.  Having warm boots and snow pants makes winter so much more fun for me.  I love the cold long as I can leave it whenever I want to.  :)

Ebay has been great.  Now that we have two car payments (argh.) I feel like my income is more needed and not just "extra."  It's times like this when self-employment is kind of stressful.  If my random stuff I list on ebay doesn't sell...I don't get paid!  Thankfully, I always seem to make my same average amount (or more, lately!).  I really feel like God provides for us through this job of mine and I just need to trust in that.  I don't want to worry when I clearly see how we have been blessed time and time again through this.  That week that I wanted to make more to cover my speeding ticket?  I made $190 ticket was $200.  :)

I wish I had some cute pictures to show you but I just don't.  What is in front of me right now is a box of kleenex (puffs plus lotion), an empty coffee mug (which is cute), and a bowl of used kleenex.  yuuuuuuck.

Happy day to you and may your nose not be chapped.


p.s.  All that talk about work makes me rethink taking tomorrow off to hang out with my husband.  But that is important too, you know?  Some pancakes and a movie might be just what the doctor ordered.  :)

p.s.s.  I love my kids so much.  This morning James & Ruby were fighting over hiding the pickle on the Christmas tree and I wanted to muzzle both of them but has been hitting me lately how BIG they are getting.  They are such neat kids.  I love seeing them grow up and watching them change and have their hearts open up more to the world around them.  xxoo

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

james is 10 and other stuff

I almost waited a few more days so it would be one full month since I blogged but then I realized if I didn't just get back here it might be another month! In another month, it will be January!! I know that's obvious but still, it is shocking. :)

So, how is everyone out there?  I am good.  At last broadcast I shared how I had hit a deer and Patrick was going to fix the headlight.  He did get it fixed and I was so happy to have a van again!  So happy!  Every time I got in it I said I didn't care about the fender/hood/door/bumper/cdplayer (haha) and I was JUST FINE.  And then the transmission went out.  :)  On Thanksgiving night as I was going to meet my sister at Kohl's.  :(  So, on Black Friday we shopped for a new van and got one.  And it is very nice and I am only slightly bitter (still) that we had to get a new one but fixing the old one just made NO sense.  (Progressive had deemed it a total loss after the deer and paid us for it so that deer was a huge blessing, actually.  no deer=no check for $3000.00)

My Dad and Mari and Thomas all came down for Thanksgiving and we had a very nice day at my sister & Ronan's house.  see below for evidence:

my sister made this:

men cuddled up with blankets & giant moose:

What else??  Hmmmmm.  James turned 10 and had the BEST BIRTHDAY EVER, according to him.  It included a new book, a new DS game, all of his favorite foods, a triple layer chocolate cake, dinner at Noodles, and unlimited electronic time.  (In January we are taking him and a friend to the Dells to an indoor play place for the day, too.)  I can't believe he is 10.

our little nugget.

I have been failing miserably at taking pictures lately.  I didn't do my annual photo book this year.  I didn't put up any outdoor decorations.  My cards are not sent.  My gifts are not all bought or wrapped.  It's kind of a bummer but I have been working a lot and cutting stuff off the list that will stress me out.  I'm good with that.  I don't feel like I have too much to do and if I just do the basics, we will be just fine.  We are cozy in our house with pretty snow and lots of cocoa.  Right??  :)

But of course I will finish shopping and wrapping.  That is so fun!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

so much

Hi, you guys!  I've been missing this place but last week had some major poopy stuff and I had to deal with it. 

I got a speeding ticket.  boo.  (don't talk to me about this in front of my kids, please, I'm not telling them.) 

The next day, a deer hit our van.  I was going slowly, due to seeing lots of dead deer earlier, and was by myself.  I wasn't hurt at all but our van was deemed a total loss.  :(  It is still drivable, though, but it's all banged up and it's not really worth it to fix it.  We got the insurance $$ and I am hopefully going to drive this one through the winter, as it is.  :/  I just hate buying something new (used but new to me) right before the worst driving season, you know? 

So, kind of a bummer of a week.  I tried to work extra to pay for my ticket and it seems to be paying off this week, so that's good. 

Other good stuff:  The allergist thinks James would pass an egg challenge meaning they think he is very close to having outgrown his egg allergy!  We still have to do it, mind you, but the skin test looked good.  He patted me on the back for feeding him so much baked egg in the last year.  :)  For the challenge, he would eat french toast.  James is up for it so we just need to schedule it.  It takes four hours.  ugh.  :)  (but so worth it!!)

Also, we are returning our new dishwasher because it sucks.  It's a Bosch Ascenta, just so you know what to avoid if you're looking. 

I need to go make some coffee now and take a few pics.  Be back sooner rather than later.  xoxo

Monday, November 04, 2013

the wedding, halloween & SO MUCH MORE

I wore the green dress with the booties.  My sister was ALL ABOUT the booties and my mom even jumped on-board the bootie bandwagon.  :)  I felt very cute and comfortable aside from the poop baby I was carrying around.  :(  OH MY GOSH, my stomach was huge and uncomfortable.  Luckily the dress helped camouflage that and no one asked me when I was due.  (turns out the due date was the next morning...)  (SICK!)

Anyways!  I really enjoyed talking with a few different people and Patrick and I enjoyed our time away and a couple of slow dances. 

That morning before the wedding we had a very nice brunch to celebrate my mom's birthday.  Looking back, all those waffles probably didn't help my situation any, if you know what I mean.

Patrick is working on this huge project for his brother that I cannot even begin to explain but it involves a Kinect and ghosts and a tesla coil and OMgosh, really??  He loves that kind of thing, though, (not the ghost part but the other stuff) so he is happy to have a challenge in front of him.  He wanted to bail out on church, though, so I got kind of crabby about that.  I got over it (church helped) and we had a pretty nice day together. 

We are giving the kids an electronic detox this week and Nicky is really making a play for the iPad right now.  Poor kid.  Here, Nicky, these are crayons...let me show you how they work...

Halloween!  Halloween was fun but I was so glad when it was over.  What a long, high-energy day.  I did not want to carve pumpkins this year (grinch!) but my kids really did so we did 3 of them and I actually enjoyed myself.  We also roasted the seeds and they actually turned out.  huh.  (we did that stuff the night before.  I didn't take one picture of our pumpkins or my kids dressed up.  BAD MAMA.  Well, Nicky didn't dress up but the other two did.  I did, too!   My sister and I were witches.  (shut up!)  ;)

I did take a picture of their Halloween breakfast:

Also, here is the stuff I painted for Ruby's room:

 Her halloween decorations:  skeleton drawing, bat & spider cut outs:
 Oh, and I'm not sure if I ever showed these.  We basically painted her room my dad's favorite color.  After he saw that he sent Rubes some framed (and signed) pictures of two of his cute...

I just told Nicky, "I'm almost done and we'll find something to do."  He said, "sometin yike pay the iPad???"

It might be a long day.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Glad tidings, peeps!

How's it going?

Good, here.  Yesterday I felt like a ZOMBIE, major slump day, but today feels more like normal.  I worked yesterday and am today, too.  Just wanted to procrastinate pop in to say hi.  :)

I found black heels!  Thrifted, of course.  :)  They are Born Concept and pretty cute.  I don't LOVE them but they are like new and were 3.99.  My sister said I could try some of hers, too.  The booties are not off the table yet but it's good to have other options.

I am almost done painting a dresser and my old hope chest for Ruby's room and am so happy I actually did this!  I think the key for me was having Patrick help me get these two items into the garage.  They were there, so I did them.  Huh.  The hope chest might need one more coat but I should be able to do it today and then move the stuff into her room tomorrow while she's at school.  Then James' dresser is next on the list.  It's kind of fun.  The warmish weather helps, too.

I had crazy ebay sales on Sunday...10 of them!  My average is 3/day so that was a lot.  Then yesterday, nothing.  booooo.  I hate days like that but they are common, too.  Hopefully I'll get a little action today.  I am listing all this random stuff that has the best chance of selling now, for the holidays, but it's the stuff that I like listing the least.  It will feel sooooo good to have it done, though. 

Better get to it.  This vintage Furby Baby is FIRST.  I need to get this little thing to sleep so I don't kill it.  :)


Friday, October 25, 2013

thank you!!

So, quick morning update to say thanks!!  I really appreciate all the feedback!

I love that green dress!  I, like Sybil, am drawn to black and gray...they are my favorites, but I wanted something colorful and was so happy to find it.

The problem?  Patrick doesn't like it.  gah!  I'm going to show him again with the jewlery and tights, etc, and see if that helps.  I hate to wear something he doesn't like but I also want to look good, you know?  :)

I think #2 will look better once I take it in a bit, which shouldn't be hard.  Thanks for meowing at my butt, Cousintine.  :)  xoxo  I was kind of surprised when I saw that photo.  heehehehehee.

I might start taking butt shots daily and base my wardrobe around them. 

KIDDING.  But photos make some things really clear.  gtk.

You seem divided on the booties, as am I.  BUT, I think I am wearing them!!  They are super comfy and I am too cheap to buy new shoes right now that I will rarely wear.  I have quite a few pairs of nice black shoes, just none that are good for a wedding.

It is early now but I was so happy to hear from you guys that I wanted to say thanks before the day got away from me.  Time to get the kids up!


Thursday, October 24, 2013

help/thrift scores

Hi guys.  I'm going to put myself out there a little today and I would LOVE your honest opinions.  I am going to a wedding next weekend and am not sure what to wear!  I've asked my mom & sister so I know what they think, I've heard Patrick's opinion on one of them (not good!), and I am pretty much stuck between two of them.  help??

Also, all of these but one were thrifted and I just thrifted the boots, too! 

1.  INC dress, goodwill $6.99, American Eagle booties $5.99:

Also, wearing booties with a dress is OUT THERE for me.  Are you down with this look or no way?

 2.  Gap dress, $7.72, Fossil locket $13 (bought broken on ebay and Patrick fixed it...I LOVE it...but is necklace and scarf too much?), Scarf I already had:
 Okay, this is awkward but (haha) I love the buttons on the back of this dress.  It is supposed to have a dolman sleeve but it might benefit from being taken in just a tad.:
 3.  I wore this to my brother's wedding last winter.  The sleeves have slits on them, which I really like.  I bought it new at JC Penney.  I like it but A) I already wore it! and B) I don't think it's as flattering as I once suspected.
 4.  J. Crew dress, $5.99.  Okay, I love this dress but it was hard to photograph.  I had to lighten the image...the dress is a true black.  It's a heavier knit and warm and comfy but it doesn't look so good here!  To me this dress says church or something...just kind of boring.  Not that church is boring but you know...
 Okay, no number because not really a choice.  I like this in the mirror but this picture looks awful.  It's short and baggy.  It is a European brand, Fenn Wright Manson, and I thrifted it for $2.  blech. 
 OH, and here are my black booties that I've wanted since last year but could never find anywhere, new or used.  Then I found some for $5.99!  (to be honest I only looked at the mall and DSW a couple of times but seriously found nothing as I had something like these in my head...and then here they are!)

This was kind of fun.  I think I have a better idea of what length/style looks good on me.  Okay, what do you think??  :)  I'm all ears!!!!  Thank you.


Monday, October 21, 2013

I'm supposed to be working but it's not working

I have chicken stock simmering for another hour or two so I told myself that I might as well get some listings done.  HA!  I have no desire to work right now.  I'd rather be in bed reading.  I could always take the chicken stock off of the heat and finish it tomorrow, right??  right.  But I will see how I feel after a quick post.

I am kind of sick to my stomach from candy corn.  Do you love candy corn?  I sure do, but it really needs to be enjoyed in moderation.  My sister gave us half a bag last night and I CURSE her!  :)  Just kidding, of course. 

We all went to Trader Joe's last night (seester, mom, ruby & I) and it was fun!  We had been in the house all day (Ruby & I) so it was really good to get out.  My sister and I felt strange being outside after dark.  :)  We really need to do that more often.  Also, I got some of those awesome pretzel croissants.  yuuuum.

I just finished Stephen King's Joyland and I really liked it.  It felt like slipping into an old sweater...his voice is so familiar to me.  It's a fairly quick read, I read it in one day, and I was sad when it was over.  I remember lying in bed under a pile of blankets for most of two snow days in junior high, plowing through Cujo and another of his books.  :)  That's a good memory.

Ruby had her cheerleading premier last Friday night and had a good time.  It was pretty cold but James and I kept warm snuggled up next to Wendy.  :)  We also had hot chocolate and some of us wished we had some Bailey's.  They had offered a short cheerleading camp to any girl K-8 who wanted to try.  They had 3 practices and then cheered at that game and now they're done.  The cheerleading coach said he would try to get them together again soon, though.  Ruby is pretty shy about trying new things so I was SO happy that she wanted to try this.

Patrick was home again today.  He took a vacation day to unpack my mom's stuff (him & Ronan went to Duluth last weekend and loaded up her house with the help of Thomas & Erin) (and my mom, of course) but they finished on Sunday so he just got to hang out with Nick & I again today.  It was a nice day.  I went for 3 short walks.

I should wrap this up.  Here are a few pictures:

 James' first time mowing the lawn...he was seriously grinning from ear to ear, he was so proud of himself.  :)  Loved that.
 Going into the tunnel:
 coming out:

 cheerleading practice (Ruby's in the green tee):
 She has had 3 of these this year if you can believe that.  ugh.  Makes my stomach hurt a little.  :)


p.s.  I'm going to bed now.  :)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

happy thursday

This has been the first week since school started that has felt super BUSY.  I am so glad we had lice last week!!  We would have missed out on a lot this week.  Ruby and James both had scouts, last night was our town's Fall Festival, tonight Ruby has cheerleading practice, tomorrow night she cheers at the football game (!!), Saturday is another scouting event, Nicky & I went to a birthday party yesterday, our van is in the shop, I baked for the bake sale, conferences tonight, I'm babysitting tomorrow and we are supposed to get our new dishwasher.  PHEW.  Oh, and two days of work.  :)  I cancelled a dr. appt.  Priorities!  :)  (it was only a well child check and it's been rescheduled.)

Good gravy!  I'm glad we live in this small town so I can walk practically everywhere with the kids for all of this stuff.  I'm also glad we had a quiet day on Monday with Patrick.  I'm also glad that this is an anomaly for me this year.

I want to say how happy I am to be working again.  I am pleasantly surprised every time I sell something and feel so blessed that I can do this and make the money I do.  I love what I do and I think I'm pretty good at it.  It's fun to think about where I can take it in a couple of years when all my babies are at school all day.

I'm not quite back to where I was, ebay listing-wise, pre-lice but this week has been, like I said, crazy and I had to get back to my cleaning schedule, too.  Last week was all lice, all the time.  Laundry and hair and vacuuming and that's about it.  I didn't dust or clean the bathroom or put laundry away...UGH.  That messy house was really a factor in my mood on Saturday, I think.  I hate waking up, on the weekend especially, to a messy house.

I am writing too many sentences with too many commas today.  I have been alone in my house all day and might have a lot running through my head.  :)  Time for lunch.


Monday, October 14, 2013

monday night on the home front

Hi peeps!  I started writing one day last week (Friday?) but the day got away from me and I never got to finish.

We are optimistically, hopefully, doing good on the lice front.  As in, we haven't seen anything in a while.  Holding my breath and still combing heads, but so far, so much better. 

Last week was rough.  There were high points and low points but overall, I think it could have been a lot worse.  On Saturday I got upset with Patrick over a relatively small thing so that kind of stunk but what can you do?  I was just wore out.  I took Ruby to a cheerleading thing she is doing (so cute) that afternoon and then brought her, Nicky and a friend back to the apple orchard to see the kittens.  On Saturday night I went to the mall by myself and Sunday was church and then home for lunch with my mom.  After she left, James mowed the lawn for the first time (he was SO excited!) and we had a fire and grilled dinner.  We practiced spelling by firelight and it was kind of perfect. 

Today Patrick had off of work and we had such a nice day, the three of us.  The weather was beautiful and we took Nicky for a hike & picnic lunch on a nearby trail that I've been wanting to check out.  I've been trying to enjoy the warmer temps but waiting for sweatshirt weather and I think it's finally here!  :)

I have pictures but they will have to wait until tomorrow.  Our kids are going ape shit and we need to get them to bed. 

Good night, xoxo.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

news from the front lice lines

Good news today, friends!  James is back and school and Nicky is at Sarah's.  That's right.  My boys got an all clear and got double checked at Great Clips before they buzzed their little bug-free heads.  Yay!  I am still going to be checking and spraying them (their hair is too short to comb now!) but my fingers are crossed, you know?

My little red head wasn't so lucky but I have not given up hope.  Maybe tomorrow will be her day??

I keep reading reports (horror stories) of lice that won't go away but I also see lots of ones saying whatever solution they tried, that it actually works.  That is where I'm laying my beliefs until proven otherwise.  :)  We are definitely still heating the bedding every day and keeping all extra cozy stuff put away for a long time, though.  Like, maybe forever. 

Years from now someone will ask my kids about their childhoods and they will describe it as super cozy and warm and fun UNTIL WE GOT LICE.  Then they will describe a cold, sterile environment where their mom kept spraying them with different shit and wouldn't give them more than one blanket at a time.

How sad.  :)

Thank you so much for your comments, texts & emails.  :)  Having lice can be a lonely road, filled with lots of laundry and google's so good to hear from others who have been through it.  :)  xoxo

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

creepy update

Here we all are again, home together.  :)  Today is going better.  Everyone has been combed through and we only found one live guy and 2 nits on James and 3 egg sacs on Ruby.  Nicky was totally clear.  I seem to be clear today.  That the live guy was in James' hair makes sense to me as he has the thickest and coarsest hair.  I used the licefreeee spray last night on all of us but he put up the biggest fight and maybe his didn't get saturated all the way?  The comb works the best on Nicky, James & I, and my eyes and scissors work the best on Ruby...her hair is so light and slips right through the special comb. 


I've heard that you might see a resurgence after a few days if some missed eggs manage to hatch.  We've all been treated twice, though.  (once with chemical killer, once with a natural killer, licefreeee!) I'm going to give us another dose of the licefreeee! tonight if we have enough.  (note:  always get two or more bottles!)

Funny story.  I ordered the licefreee from and they get it to the store the same day for pick up.  Well, I didn't read the fine print and didn't bring my ID when I went to pick it up.  The kid said he wouldn't give it to me...since it was paid for, he needed proof that I was the right buyer.  I had my phone with the email confirmation but that wasn't good enough.  I looked right at him, narrowed my eyes, and said, "I need to talk to your manager.  I have 3 kids with lice behind me and we are not leaving without that spray."  He was like, okaaaaaay, and slowly backed into the back room.  His manager came out, took one look at me, and said I could have it.  :)  She has 5 kids and had lice the year before...she knew not to mess with me.  haha.  It was pretty funny.

Some day I will tell you the horror story of our Best Buy appliance shopping experience.  Okay, maybe not.  All that you need to know is we now have 2 out of 3 new appliances and it's only taken us 3 delivery dates to get those 2.  We've also had $350 taken off of our bill and are praying we get our new dishwasher, undamaged, on the 18th.  ugh. 

Hmmmmm.  What else?  I think I can stop comforting myself with food today.  :)  Oh, that reminds me!  Nicky's babysitter brought over some homemade soup for us yesterday.  Wasn't that sweet???  It was the best thing to have it be dinner time and not have to make dinner after combing and vacuuming and laundry-ing all day.  So nice.  God bless her.

It's gorgeous out and we are leaving for a walk soon.  Picnic Point is beautiful right now and the woods cannot get lice from us.


Monday, October 07, 2013

super creepy

It's 8:30 on Monday morning and I'm drinking coffee and blogging.  All 3 of my healthy kids are on the couch behind me watching Space Buddies.  What is wrong with this picture?  Have I lost my mind??

Or did we get lice?

HUGE SIGH.  We did.  Our first time and it is a nightmare, like everyone says.  I almost broke down crying a couple times yesterday but my husband agreed it was as overwhelming as I was thinking it was and that helped. 

So, first.  The thankfuls.

Thankful that...

Ruby's been in preschool and school for 4 years and this is the first time we've had it.  (and James has been in school for 7 years!  but boys are a lot less likely.)

That we didn't get it when Nicky was an infant like I was terrified of.

That I found out early on a Sunday morning when Patrick was home and we had the whole day to do nothing but laundry and vacuum and pick through heads.

That Patrick combed through my whole head for me.  (yep, I've got it, too.)

For friends that have been through it and don't sound like you're diseased when you tell them.  (even though you kind of are.)

For a washer and dryer and movies on demand.

For offers of a strong cocktail once we're out of the woods.


The bad parts are obvious.  Bugs on our heads.  My mom slept over the night before I found it.  (praying she'll be okay)  Phone calls to friends to tell them, even though they've all be so sweet.  A mountain of things to wash or run through the dryer.  I'm not kidding, a mountain.

I think I've talked before about how Patrick likes to create cozy nests on everyone's beds for them?  On James' bed alone there was one foam mattress pad, one cloth mattress pad, a sheet, one huge king size shabby chic blanket, 3 twin comforters, a fleece blanket, his special blanket, two standard bed pillows, one king size bed pillow and 4 throw pillows.  Oh, and 2 stuffed animals.  Ruby's bed was about the same.  Nicky's, just a smaller version.  Our bed had 3 comforters on it and multiple pillows.  Every room has rugs.  Ruby has bags of stuffed animals.  There were pillows and blankets on the couch and they had pulled up a big sleeping bag the night before while watching a movie.  Our couches had covers on them.  N E V E R E N D I N G.

Patrick and I talked last night about how this will be the coldest/most minimalistic winter on our families' record.  :)

I got chemical killer and an organic system  and a chemical spray and a preventative spray and ordered another natural killer spray.  I spent an hour and a half on Ruby's head and Patrick did the boys and mine.  They say you can go overboard, and we might be, but this is our first time.  It's creepy.

So, that's where my head is at.  (HA!)

How are you?  :)  Have you ever had lice?  What worked for you?  What didn't?  Please share if you've got the time.  I could use a virtual hug. 

Oh, and our new dishwasher and range are getting delivered this morning.  Patrick got up early and already emptied out under the sink took everything out of our oven storage drawer.  What would I do without him??  I want to comb through the kids now but will probably wait until the installation team is gone.  :)

Oh, but you know what?  Patrick almost didn't believe me yesterday morning when I first told him.  And I kind of knew he wouldn't and I told him calmly that I knew I was right and he could support me or leave for the day.  :)  Thank God that I found CLEAR proof shortly thereafter and now we don't have to get divorced over lice.


Thursday, October 03, 2013


My blog was 7 years old last week!  I just burned a half an hour looking through September of 2010.  Nicky was 5 months old and school was starting and I was so tired.  Makes me a little teary.  I love being so tired.  ;)

It was in October of 2010 that I vowed to wear an accessory out of the house every day.  :)  I bought my first scarf at Old Navy.  3 years later and I am kind of obsessed with accessories (love them!) (might have a slight problem with buying Fossil necklaces on ebay!) and clothes in general.  I got so many compliments from my family when I saw them all this past summer.  They loaded me down with encouraging comments on my body (Sarah said it was TONED!  ahhahahaha...but it made me feel good!) and my style.  STYLE.  Who ever said I had style?  My sister told me that last winter but I just thought she was being, well, my sweet sister.  :)

I was obviously interested in looking nicer before I lost weight but losing weight definitely helped a ton.  It is just a lot more fun to get dressed when a lot more clothes fit you.  I also love the dig because I will try pretty much anything at $1/lb.  :)  Even if it's not my "style"...for .50, I'm bringing it home to see.

I do try to look nice most times when I leave the house.  My friends and I (and my sister) always tell each other when we look particularly cute but it meant so much for me to hear it from the rest of my family.  I know how much they love me and that was just another very sweet way for them to show me.  It meant a lot.  sniff.  I have some super cute aunties (on both sides) and my aunt Kristy and I have texted each other our outfits a few times.  :)  She is the accessory QUEEN and I have a lot to learn from her.

Today is a work day and I have to work now but I just had to share that.  The compliments they gave me were very encouraging and have stayed with me.

I know I've said it before, but my family is awesome.

Also, encouraging others is awesome.  Let's all encourage someone we love today.  (or maybe someone we don't??)


p.s.  I have to edit this to include my mother.  My mom always, ALWAYS, tells me when I look good and gives me encouragement.  Also, she tells me when I look bad.  Which is just as important.  :) 

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

1 oct

I am super unmotivated this morning. James and I got pissy with each other before school and it just bums me out.  He left on a good note but that is always such a bummer.  :( 

Also, I think I am in one of my less-motivated weeks of the month.  Are you like that?  I am pretty high energy and get-er-done for 2 weeks, a bit slower the next week and pretty sluggish the next.  :)  It's unfortunate that today is OCTOBER 1st & I am supposed to create a Halloween wonderland by the time the kids get home from school.  Okay, maybe not a wonderland but something cute, you know?  I hope spilling my guts for a while will clear my head space. 

Here are a few pics from last Sunday.  We went to church and then Peck's with Annie and her kids and Gramma.  It was a gorgeous day and the apple cider donuts were sooooo good.  I want to make some so James can taste.  I think I've made them before...will have to look.  (Oh, and he wanted a Mt. Dew so he was fine with us having a donut if he got a can of pop.  :)  )


It is hours later.  I got all my decorating done, thanks to my sister calling and wanting me to meet her.  :)

I hope you had a good day!  I need to stay away from the candy corn.


Friday, September 27, 2013

my very exciting daily plan (and by exciting I mean for me, not you) :)

I took this picture with my phone last Saturday.  I was up in Duluth with my mom and she had lots of little stuff to take care of so I had the day to myself!  It was gloomy when we first woke up but about an hour later the sun came out and it turned into one of those perfect Duluth days.  I went down to the lakewalk (xoxo) and walked for so long, stopping a few times just to stare at the lake.  It's one of my favorite views.  :)

After I finished my walk, walking barefoot the last mile due to a big ass blister, I did some shopping.  I found nothing at the mall but did get a sweater at Kohl's.  I want more color in my wardrobe but I needed (??) a basic black cardigan.  After that I went down to my mom's to visit with her and my aunt Kristy, then went to dinner with my Dad and then went and had a beer with my friend Jason, who I hadn't seen in 2 or 3 years.  The night before, when we got into town, I crashed a cousin's wedding (after dinner, at the dance) and got to see a lot of my family and dance like a crazy woman for a while.  What a fun weekend!  On Sunday we crammed as much of my mom's stuff into our van and drove home.  She bought me Chipotle & a pumpkin shake for lunch so it was not a bad deal.  :)

This week was good.  I was really focused on work and almost have my store up to 100 items again.  I hope to have it there by tomorrow but might not if people keep buying stuff.  :)  I had a lot of inventory I wanted to get listed before I bought any more and I did take a big chunk out of it.  I could probably do this for another two weeks (I wasn't shopping on my work days, just listing) but all work and no play makes Stephanie VERY BORED.  :)  I hope to find a better balance with that this year. 

One thing I'm doing is trying to work for 30 minutes a day on my off days.  This allows me to list about 4 items or take a bunch of pictures.  I wonder how long I will keep up with it?  Shall we place bets?  :)

This is the third week of my daily tasks and I am liking that still.  I am supposed to vaccum today, though.  :/  If you're curious, here it is:

Monday:  thoroughly clean bathroom
Tuesday:  sweep & mop kitchen
Wednesday:  dust & empty all garbages
Thursday:  wipe down new fridge  :)  (I just ordered stainless really smudges horribly!)
Friday: vacuum

Every day I usually clean around the toilet, do a load of laundry, pick up the living room, etc.  I am also supposed to work 30 mins on ebay, 30 mins on big project (I do most days but not all), prep dinner early in the day (if needed), and exercise (ha!  didn't do that once this week.  :(  ).  There's a lot more that goes into a day but you guys know that.  :)  I like that I have a list of ideas of things to work on because I really get bored quickly.  I can only race Nicky around the kitchen so many times.  (he always wins.)

Right now Ruby is rolling around the living room, clutching her stomach and moaning.  She seems to have a bit of a stomach bug, poor thing.  Also, BUMMER because Annie & I were going to take the kids to the park.  Maybe she can tough it out if there is a park with a bathroom?? 


Friday, September 20, 2013

hi friends!

I am sorry, but this has to be another list.  kiss kiss.

  1. N:  Can I have some of those cuddles, Mom?  (he likes to cuddle up every morning but this was a new way of asking.  cute.)
  2. Half Pint is over!  I dropped off last Thursday and it was the best feeling.  Can't wait to get my check even though I had a lot less to sell this time.  (I barely shopped for sale items this summer.)  (that's okay.)
  3. I loved our summer.  I miss doing fun stuff with the kids all the time.  I miss Wendy.  (she is a teacher and back to work.)  I am so thankful for all of it.
  4. I spent the weekend cleaning the basement, which in turn, cleans my head.  I was ready to get back to ebay work on Tuesday (sitter day) and it felt really good.  I've had a good first week back and am having fun.  Yay!
  5. I am just now realizing what a gift I've given myself this year.  No volunteering (I'm sure I will on occasion) means such an empty schedule for us 3x a week.  exhale.  It is so nice.  And I don't even feel guilty.
  6. The first days "off" I felt overwhelmed with the state of our house.  Summer is awesome and busy and relaxing and not meant for dusting your kitchen cabinet tops or cleaning closets, you know?  So, I made a list!  of course I did.  I made a list of daily tasks and another of larger home tasks to work on 30 minutes a day.  That made me feel so much better and I am getting a lot done.
  7. First on my list was going through all of our closets.  James is the only one left.  Patrick is on his own.  :)
  8. Our new fridge got here yesterday and when I open it, I hear angels singing.  NOT KIDDING.
  9. Ruby spends every afternoon in this field behind our house looking for frogs and snakes.
  10. I got to pick apples!  And I was wearing jeans.  :)  I got Macouns, which I have loved in the past, and they were SO TART.  I made a wonderful crisp with some and will probably make another next week.  And maybe some applesauce.
  11. Nicky's sitter was going back to the same orchard today and offered to bring him along as she only had one little girl going.  So he is gone until noon and I get to shower and pack because I am going up to Duluth this weekend with my mom.  We are bringing another load of stuff back in our van because she can't get all of her stuff now for a month.  I'm excited for some kid free time and to see my Dad & hopefully brother & Erin again.
  12. It's pretty awesome having my mom here.  It is so strange to meet up with her and Annie and just hang out.  Love it!!
  13. I am sad thinking of being gone this weekend, too.  Isn't that silly?  I love time away but it's always a little hard to leave.  I miss Patrick and our date nights.  We need one soon.
  14. We joined some friends and are going to participate in a trivia contest to benefit the library one night in October.  It's at the local bowling alley and there will be beer.  Sounds like a good time to me.  :)  (I couldn't believe Patrick said yes.  He might be getting a little more social on me.)
  15. I can't wait to put up our Halloween stuff on October 1.  I love surprising the kids when they come home from school on that day.  :)
  16. I think I'm out of stuff.  I just ate a bunch of grapes but need something more substantial.  Like a cake.

Monday, September 09, 2013


  1. hi!
  2. I am up to my eyeballs in half pint (consignment sale) prep
  3. my eye was twitching on and off all weekend but it seems to have passed
  4. we had to buy all new kitchen appliances (only the microwave was still good)  (one part of our current fridge is hot! to the touch...come on, delivery truck...)
  5. we got stainless and I am so excited!
  6. we saved a bunch on the fridge by getting the floor model.  it's so pretty
  7. nicky is pretty much potty trained.  after I backed off, it was maybe a week before he started wanting to poop on the potty on his own and it's been nicky-led since then.  so happy!  our next big event will be a bed for him...but not for a while
  8. James & Ruby are off to a good start at school.  homework starts this weeks and I am hoping we find a good routine
  9.  I am sick of the summertime temps
  10. I want to go apple picking but not in a tank top and shorts
  11. Patrick and I went on a brewery tour with Annie & Ronan this weekend.  It was a lot of fun and the beer was tasty.  (Minhas)
  12. Yesterday we celebrated Jacob's 3rd birthday!  My sister made an adorable cupcake stand and robot photo guy but I didn't have my camera.  :(  They also had a huge bouncy house.  It was a perfect 70 degrees.  So fun.  
  13. My mom got here Friday night!  Her stuff won't be here for a couple weeks but she is here and that is so awesomely strange.  :)
  14. nicky just locked me out while I was hanging out laundry.
  15. nice.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

my best of summer top ten list (in no particular order)

1.  Ruby singing along to the radio in the van.  (our faves?  Cups and Just Give Me a Reason.)

2.  James passing his deep end test and coming to find me with the hugest smile on his face

3.  our date nights

4.  Park Point with so much of our family

5.  camping

6.  Dirty Girl

7.  bike rides

8.  learning to grill boneless chicken breasts properly  (pound 'em flat, marinate in seasoned buttermilk and grill.  so good.)

9.  mowing the lawn

10.  tie:  coffee on the patio::pretty annuals I didn't kill::cute clothes


I hope I'm back soon with some more regularity.  :)  I miss it here.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

dirty girl, 2013

These pics are all out of order but they'll have to do. :) It was such a good time. Going into the weekend, Wendy and I were saying we definitely didn't want to do it again next year..."let's just have a girls weekend..."  blah, blah, blah.  Before the first mile was over we were grinning like fools and saying we were all in for next year!  :)  So fun.  Loved it.  I wish it would have gone on longer, went so fast.  They improved a lot from last year (less repeating mud pits/new obstacles/better shower situation) and it will be fun to see what they do next year.  Go Dirty Girls!! 


 me and annie:
 me and annie:
 this slide was SO awesome:

 thanks for photoshopping the guy out, Dad:
Of course, my sister loved it and now she wants us to do Warrior Dash next year, too.  With our husbands.  :)  Bring it on!



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