Monday, September 29, 2008
This weekend, my mom and Joe came for a visit. The kids were beside themselves...asking over and over again, "WHEN will Grandma and PaPa be here???" By the time they finally did get here, the kiddos were totally wound up, and I'm pretty sure Papa Joe was sore the next day from Noah and Kendall climbing all over him! On Sunday, we lounged around in the morning and then all went into Columbus for lunch...chinese!!! There's a little place on Riverside Drive that we call McDonald's Chinese because it is in a building that used to be a McDonalds. I think it's really called Eastern Bay, but anyway... it's really good and we got there in time for the Sunday buffet, so it was win-win!!! Noah was completely in awe of the urinals in the men's restroom. When I came out of the restroom, I could hear my darling son, talking in his always-loud voice..."Yeah, dere's urnals in dere!!! Dere's TWO urnals!!!! Did you see them Dad? I saw a URNAL in dere!!! Yeah, I used a URNAL, Grandma!! Mama, dere's URNALS in dere!!!! I need to go potty again, Dad...I need to go potty in the urnal! Seriously, he would NOT stop talking about the damn urinals. The few people that were in there were laughing...and we were all trying not to. I never knew urinals were so cool...
Then we headed down the road to Griggs Reservoir to walk off some chinese. There's a river and a dam there and lots of trees...and lots of places to play. Boy, was I sorry I didn't bring my camera!!! It was a truly beautiful fall day. We walked and walked, ran up and down the hills with the kids, tossed walnuts, checked out the dam, and just had a really nice time. So much so, in fact, that we lost track of time! It was 4:15 when we got back to the van, and Shawn, Deetra, Shea and Will were coming for dinner and to help Barry put the new windows in Noah and Kendall's rooms...Barry had told them to come between 4:30 and 5:30...YIKES!!! We were a good 35 minutes away, and we hadn't even stopped at Jeni's for ice cream yet! So we called Deetra, high-tailed it outta there, went for ice cream (Noah and I shared the triple with Lime Cardamom, Goat Cheese with Cherry Compote, and Passionfruit Frozen Yogurt...YUM!), hit the grocery quick for a few items I needed for dinner, and got our butts on the road!!!
As soon as we hit the door, I started dinner...Chicken with Bowties, roasted veggies, and country rolls. Deetra brought cake and ice cream to celebrate Shawn's birthday...yeah, like I needed more ice cream, right? I took it easy, believe me. Just a tiny bit of pasta, and mostly veggies. I wasn't even hungry, but who could turn down this yummy meal? Of course, I did partake of a piece of cake...it was a celebration, after all!! The time went so fast that before we knew it, Shawn and Deetra were hustling their kiddos home and we were trying to get ours to bed...it was a school night!
I can't believe it's already Monday night, and I'm headed off to photography class. Fun, Fun, Fun...and then dinner afterward with two of the most fun, creative gals I know! Who knew I could look forward to Mondays so much???
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
If you read Kiki's blog, this week you read about the personality test she took. And, since I have nothing notable to write about today AND I have been totally slacking in the photography department (maybe I should fire myself...bad blogger!), I decided to take the test. Who knows...maybe there will be some surprises about me that you don't know! I would be interested in whether any of you who read this blog but don't know me personally are surprised by my results...
AND, I would also be interested in knowing if all of you readers who DO know me personally would agree with them. Let's call it a social experiment, shall we? So, I expect some input here, even by you folks who don't comment...that means you Mom! And Grandma. And Sue. And Jess. Oh yeah...I know you're out there lurking. You can't hide from ME....Mwahhahahaa!!!
Your personality type:
Popular and sensitive, with outstanding people skills. Externally focused, with real concern for how others think and feel. Usually dislike being alone. They see everything from the human angle and dislike impersonal analysis. Very effective at managing people issues and leading group discussions. Interested in serving others and probably place the needs of others over their own needs.
Careers that could fit you include:
Teachers, consultants, psychiatrists, social workers, counselors, clergy, sales representatives, human resources, managers, events coordinators, politicians, diplomats, writers, actors, designers, homemakers, musicians, religious workers.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
"MAMA!! MAMA!!!! You'llneverbelievewhatIfound!!! (deep breath) ImovedthisrockwhileIwaslookingforpoly-bugs,andIfound...(deep breath) A LIZARD!!!!!
So of course, I am expecting one of those little tiny, gecko-like lizards. But NO-OOOOOO! When I looked in the green sand bucket she was carrying, I actually screamed. That was no gecko!!!! It was HUGE and black!!!! And missing a foot! Wouldn't you have screamed too??The first thing Kendall decided HAD to be done was to take the little beast over to see her friend Jackson, who lives behind us. Jackson and Kendall are fellow lizard/bug/creature lovers. She just knew he would go crazy to see her latest find. And he was. Here are some pics of those two being silly with their little salamander...
No fear, though, nature lovers...we always let the critters go home before bedtime!!
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Now as you may know, Noah is a Thomas freak! He LOVES his trains and takes at least two everywhere he goes. He knows them all by name and disposition... "That's Diesel-10...he's always cross! This is James! He's cheeky!" He plays out entire stories featuring the trains of The Island of Sodor on his train table. He and his friends Sam and Alex do nothing but talk of their trains...they are such good little buddies! So when Sam & Alex's mom told us about the Day Out with Thomas, we decided we were in! I mean, how could we miss the inevitable expression of raw surprise and delight on those little boys' faces??? It would be priceless...
We secured tickets for the 3:00 train ride, and knowing that we had a little over an hour's drive, we decided to leave around 12:30 so we would have time to take in all the other activities beforehand. Sunday started out as a beautiful day! The sun was shining and the kids were ready to go and being very well behaved, considering they had no idea where we were going! We arrived in Lebanon, found parking, and met up with the Homans. The wind was really wicked! Right as we got there, the gift shop tent blew down, so the workers were hustling to get everything out and to a small warehouse-type building across the street. The whole area was situated close to a park with a ball diamond, so you can imagine the dust and debris that was flying everywhere...every time the wind would kick up, the kids would cover their eyes or bury their faces in our clothes. At one point, we heard a train whistle...it was Thomas himself, chugging down the track, pulling 8 coaches!! The kids were SO STINKIN' EXCITED!!! Sir Topham Hatt was a man dressed in a big inflatable-type suit, but we didn't get to go see him, because they hustled him inside quickly...you can imagine what could've happened to him, as inflated as he was! LOL! Basically, in the first 10 minutes we were there, they closed everything down except the actual ride on Thomas. We decided that the kiddos didn't know any different, so we just pretended it was all part of the game plan and went for ice cream while we waited for our 3:00 ride. At 2:40, we headed up to the boarding gate. As we waited in line, we took pics with Thomas and chatted about how this wind storm was pretty freaky...we could hear sirens all over the place, and as I mentioned already, we were being pelted with sticks and gravel and plenty of dust. Just as it was time to board the train, we noticed that Thomas wasn't there yet. The ticket-taker announced that a tree had fallen over the tracks and that they were pushing back our ride-time to 3:45. Of course, there were plenty of people who stared pissin' and moanin' immediately. Not us. We just decided to go entertain ourselves for another 45 minutes...no big deal. We headed over to the warehouse building where they set up the gift shop to try to get out of the wind, and let me tell you, that was almost worse! It was so HUMID...and the power was out through the whole area, so no A/C. It was definitely better to stand outside. When it was finally getting close to our assigned time, we started heading to the train, which they were already boarding to help get people in out of the wind, even though we still had 20 minutes yet before departure. The kids were about to pee their pants, they were so excited! They were ON THOMAS!!!
At departure time, the conductor made an announcement that the police had asked them not to run the train anymore, as there were 2 more trees down on the track and they didn't feel it was safe...refunds would be issued if we would leave our contact information. They couldn't do it right then, as there was still no power. SO, after all that time, we didn't get to ride. We decided to make the best of it and told the kids, "WOW!! Wasn't that COOL??? We got to come and see Thomas and get our picture taken with him, and have ice cream! You even got to sit in one of his coaches!!" They all were fine with it...not one single fit. Remember, we did not build this up at all...they didn't know where we were going, and we never gave them any details, so as far as they knew, that's all it was!! The ride home was crazy! There were trees down everywhere...fire trucks and medic crews at every intersection...roads closed...stoplights blown off...barns missing their roofs. We were getting a little anxious about what we would find when we got home! But luckily, our damage was minimal. We lost two table umbrellas, our tent ended up in the woods, and the playhouses had blown apart, but nothing of huge significance. We were very lucky! The homes of the community behind us were without power and still are...so we've been having neighbors over to use our shower and our generator, and anything else they need.
Now, if you've made it this far, give yourself a pat on the back! Because there is more to the story! On Monday morning, I was trying to make sure all our friends had what they needed to help with the power outage, so the kids and I were driving to all of their houses to check on them. I stopped into Deetra's house last, because I had talked with her just an hour before and she said they were fine, and even had electricity. But as I was coming up on her house, I decided to pop in just in case. Shea answered the door, and I walked up the stairs to see Deetra sitting straight up on the couch. I started talking to her and then noticed that she was staring rather intently at me..."Deetra, are you ok? Dee...are you having contractions?" She replied that yes, she was... and they were coming regularly, about 4-5 minutes apart. "WHAT? Did you call Shawn? Is he on his way?" Well, yes and no. She had called him, but told him not to worry, she'd just give it a little bit and see if they stayed regular before asking him to come home. I told her she needed to call him and tell him to leave NOW. So she did, and he asked if I could stay with her until he got home....DUH! YES!!! In the meantime, we called Dr. Powell and she said to tell Deetra to go to the hospital right away, she was sure the labor would go quickly. We called Shawn back and told him to meet us at the hospital...just what every husband wants to hear! I think he drove 80 mph all the way there, but hit many detours due to all of the wind damage. We got Deetra's stuff together, dropped the kids off at Jodi's and headed to the hospital. By the time Shawn got there, we had her checked in, in bed, monitors strapped on and she was checked by the nurse...4-5 cm and 100% effaced! Baby Boy Huntington was on his way!!! OMG, I was so nervous, but I was trying to be calm and reassuring for Deetra. Just walking into L&D makes me tense up. I do not find anything about the hospital to be soothing in any way. Guess I won't be having any more babies, eh? Anyway, all the grandparents were on their way, Shawn was there, and it was time for me to go, after giving my friend a quick foot rub and telling her good luck and to remember to keep her face relaxed. I headed out the door to go pick up Kendall, Noah, and soon-to-be big sister Shea. I got the kiddos home, made them lunch, and got to work on the brownies that Deetra had requested as her post-delivery treat. I'll tell ya what...those brownies weren't out of the oven for 15 minutes before Deetra's mom called. Whew!! And what quick labor! I had taken her to the hospital at 11:30 or so, and baby boy was born at 3:46 or something close to that. I grabbed Shea, told my kids to stay with their dad, and Shea and I headed to Kroger for Ben & Jerry's (another request from Deetra). Hey, the girl's got taste!
We got to the hospital, met the newest member of the Huntington family, and had a birthday party for the little peanut. Brownies, ice cream, and plenty of family. He is one loved little guy!So now, this morning, I can finally breathe. I think I held my breath all day yesterday! Oh yeah, and school is cancelled again today, since there is no power. Maybe I won't get to breathe after all...
Monday, September 15, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
Have I ever mentioned how much I *LOVE* my Food Saver???
It's right up there with my Dyson and my Cuisinart blender and my food processor. Right up there with my stoneware and my cast-iron skillets. It's almost as high on my "Things I Can't Do Without" list as my new Nikon, but not quite. And that is purely because anytime I use my Food Saver, I usually have a mess to clean up....not so with my Nikon!!! The Nikon is pure fun!! But I digress...
I got my Food Saver for Christmas last year. I think it was last year. Maybe the year before...oh well, I guess I can't remember for sure. Anyway, I was so excited, because I'd been wanting to start preserving the wonderful bounty from our garden, and canning was a little intimidating for me. (Still is, actually. There's something about all that boiling water and hot jars that sets a perfect scenario for burning my hands or fingers...and that, folks, is no good for a massage therapist such as myself!) The Food Saver is awesome because the food you freeze doesn't get freezer burn. It stays so fresh, and for so much longer!! You can even use it to keep all of your produce fresher for longer! You know that lettuce and celery that always gets limp in the crisper drawer? Not if you use your Food Saver on it!! Berries, nuts? That's right, just use the Food Saver! Everything stays fresh longer!
So anyway, we immediately put that thing to use, processing Barry's deer. And then it was chicken and pork chops that I bought on major sale. I buy them in Family Packs when they've been marked down and then split them up in smaller portions and run 'em through the Food Saver. I never buy beef at the store, because we buy a quarter of a cow every year, so the freezer is already full of that. I used it to freeze strawberries, zucchini bread, cookies, muffins, soup, zucchini slices, green beans, and now today...sweet corn! Every year I say I'm going to go buy a couple dozen ears of sweet corn and freeze it. And every year I don't get around to it. WELL NOT THIS YEAR!!!! I bought 2 dozen ears on Wednesday, and started blanching, cutting, and freezing today. It worked out so well, I think I'll be heading back to the farmer's market this weekend for a 2-3 more dozen! And you know what else??? While at the farmer's market, I picked up a bag of fresh peaches (upon recommendation from my sweet friend Amy), and they are SOOOOOO tasty!! I think I will freeze some of them too!! Wow, am I on a roll or what? Our big freezer is almost full!!! Good thing summer is almost over and the garden is pretty much dead...
Do you can/freeze/preserve??? What are your favorites or specialties?? Just curious...maybe next year I'll finally take on canning! Bring on the Mason jars!!
P.S. Does anyone else get as excited about food as I do ??? Anyone???? Hel-looooo, anyone out there?
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
Things have been so incredibly busy around here lately that I haven't been able to write a good blogpost to save my life. So sorry, folks. I'll try to do better. Really. Maybe in my spare time...LOL! Anyway, this has been weighing heavily on my mind. I do want to do better! I really CAN write well, when I sit down and put my mind to it. So let's hope that the stars will align and I will be able to sit down long enough to get a couple of well-thought-out lines down on this thing.
BUT, until then, here's what's going on around here:The baby chicks are babies no more. Now, it's starting to look like the majority of them are roosters, not hens. That, my friends, is a pisser. Why, you ask? Well, because we have these chickies to lay eggs, that's why!! And in case you aren't aware, roosters DO NOT lay eggs!!! So, we may have to get more chicks!! AGHHHHH!!!! At least this time we know not to get a mixed run...we'll get all hens.
Nothing makes me sigh like this vision out of the back of the house...what is it about a man on a tractor? Is it just me? It looks so peaceful out there...Barry mowing on his beat-up tractor, the leaves beginning to turn...sigh...
Noah and Kendall brought me some hand-picked flowers last night while I was cleaning up after dinner. Doesn't that make every mother's heart flip?Scout is so glad there is a slight chill in the air and the humidity is down. That poor pup has spent the entire summer in the house, laying on the air vents, but here lately, he has been full of energy... especially in the mornings and evenings. Isn't he just a big ol' baby?
I have a light week at work this week, but it's ok. I have plenty of things to do around here to keep me busy. I am weeding out this house. I am feeling that lingering anxiety that comes with having TOO MUCH STUFF. So, there is a huge load going to the HELP House this week, we have donated a few things to our college-age neighbor for her apartment, and quite a bit is going straight to the burn barrel and the trash! Burn, baby, BURN!!! Just get it out of my house! And then, of course, comes the organizing. T, I think I need you!!!
But alas, I am determined to make some headway. And after this past weekend, I feel like I am on a roll. I knocked quite a few things off my to-do list...things that have been sitting there for quite some time. I worked my butt off (too bad that is just a figure of speech!!!). Now that I have finished staining some of the pieces for Noah's room, I just may get it completed so I can post pictures...yeah, I'm talking about the room I started oh, I don't know, like 4 MONTHS ago!!! Teresa has probably written me off by now, haven't you, T??? Either that or your fingers are worn down to the second knuckle from drumming your fingers on your desk, waiting....heeheehee....!
Anyway...you all have a great week! Enjoy the weather!!
Friday, September 05, 2008
So without further ado, here are just a few of my faves....
The Gals...Me, Amy, Jen & Jodi. As usual, I am the lone blonde in a sea of brunettes...could I be intimidated by other blondes? hmmmm.....
And this one too...the high five after Kendall rode her first wave in all by herself. She was so excited!
Thursday, September 04, 2008
My brother and his roommate have finally taken the time to get their blog off of MySpace and started a real blog! Take a minute to check it out, will ya?
Girls, don't be offended by all the huntin' talk. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of that is embellished or just plain made up...but it is entertaining nonetheless. My brother does have the knack for B.S., for sure!
Anyway, take a minute to check it out if you're so inclined...T & Jenelle, this may be more for your sweet hubbies than for you gals!!! Pass the word along! ;0)
It was so nice to just sit around the fire and chat while the kids played. But oh, let's not forget the slimy, sticky gooeyness of those roasted marshmallows...mmmmmmmm.....the kiddos did a bang-up job of getting their marshmallow roasted to charred-black perfection...
And of course, the combination of graham crackers, chocolate and melted marshmallows is divine! This particular one below is MY masterpiece...it was too good for words!Are ya'll hungry now? Come on over, there's plenty for everyone! I'll tell Barry to get the fire started...
Monday, September 01, 2008
Today marks the 13th anniversary of the day Barry and I embarked on the adventure of a lifetime...MARRIAGE. And what a ride it's been! I can honestly say that we've had a much larger share of ups than downs, and we truly have an idyllic life. I can't imagine it any other way...
He is my best friend and confidant, a committed partner and wonderful father.
We can still laugh WITH each other and AT each other.
I like to tell myself that he still finds all my little quirks to be charming, as I do his. (Hey, let me live in my fantasy world a little while longer, ok?)
We agree and we disagree...and that's ok. What fun would it be to agree on everything anyway?
I still get butterflies when he holds my hand or puts his arm around me.
So here we are, at Lucky 13, and do I ever feel lucky! No big plans for today or tonight, in fact I'm working. But that's ok...I'm sure we'll have a bottle of wine and a bit of snuggling when I get home.
Maybe he'll even hold my hand...wink, wink...