Saturday, May 29, 2010

Do You Think...?

...It smells bad in this car??Now before you think I am going to pick on smokers, let me tell you about the recent smell in my car.

Wet, moldy, lake clothes. Yep, they stewed in there a couple of days before the aroma reached it's most annoying amount. I was afraid to look back there and see what it was. So I made Shawn. I just love being married.

So what about you all. What's the 'worst-smell-that-lead-to-a-nasty-discovery in your car? Please make me feel better. But I will start with this. Rotted leftover milk in a sippee cup ranks pretty high on the list.

Not that I know anyone that has happened to....

...I'm just guessing it would be bad.

Friday, May 28, 2010

May 23, 2010

Last Sunday would have been my mom's 67th birthday. The last one I celebrated with her was her 53rd.

She worked at our local college for many years and was loved by students and faculty and staff.

I took Kennedy and Reagan up to the campus to take some pictures. But instead of taking pictures of them, I took pictures of the bricks at the Centennial Plaza.Shawn and I have a brick somewhere in the mix but for the life of me, I can never find it. In my search I found several that were picture worthy.

Love the humor.A Jimi Hendrix quote on the campus of a religious university. Look at this one. That's all one family. What a heritage. This is my grandmother's family. She married my grandpa when I was 1. That's four generations represented.My next door neighbor in the dorm. I met her in the first week when I heard her sobbing through a cement wall and went over to check on her. She was a bit homesick. She got over it and lived there four years total.My neighbors. In the 40's students had to sit at the three times a week chapel services in alphabetical order. Don and Joy Beaver sat next to each other. Because of that they fell in love and have been married for over 50 years.Our former neighbor Lois Brasher. She was a widow by the time we moved in. Shawn was her handyman extraordinaire. He would often say that he was going to Lois's. Because of that, McKinley thought her real names was Lois's.But here's my favorite brick. I got all photography class on it and got down on the ground with my Nifty Fifty lens. With the biggest aperture I got this awesome depth of field and what is now one of my favorite pictures.I put this photo on Facebook last night and my a friend put a wonderful comment. Mom was his dad's secretary. His dad was Dean of Students for many years.

Hey Steph - your mom was the coolest staff person at the college. Many, many times she would bail me out by typing something for me (remember, this was before we had computers!); she always looked out for me, watched over me, reminded me of important things (like mom and dad's anniversary, b-days, etc.)...BUT what I remember most was the morning she called my dorm room and said, "Bruce, Dr. Barnard would like to see you at 10am in his office." (she never, never called dad Dr. Barnard)...that was the day Dave Richards and I were ratted out for an insignificant prank...when I saw Dave later that morning, he said, "Hey, Kerry called me and said your dad wants to meet me at 10am" and we both knew we were busted...I know my dad attributes much of his success to your mom...she was a wonderful person who loved life, the college kids, and her family!!

How's that for a start to your day? It made mine.

I love you Mom!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Now What?

The banquet and auction are over.

The musical is over.

The 5th grade promotion is over.

School is out for the summer.

Photography class is over.

So why am I not blogging?

I don't have a clue.

I am still fundraising.

I'm still training for the half marathon.

I'm still lost in a mountain of laundry.

I'm still living in a dirty house.

I still haven't started any yard work.

I want to redecorate my entire house and paint everything in sight.

But I'm here, sitting on the couch at 11:27 pm. I've been up since 5:15 and will be up tomorrow at 5:40.

And I'm out of coffee!!

Send help.

Send coffee.

Send inspiration.

And send paint. This color please:c) Woodlawn Charm.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

When Big Sisters Attack

Oh, big sisters with rock hard diving sticks.

Friday, May 21, 2010


I might actually be catching on to the 9 pages of notes I've taken over three weeks of class.
Or this could just be pure dumb luck.

Who really knows?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Oklahoma Storms

We've been under a severe weather watch for...forever. Well, maybe about a week and a half. We've had dime to softball size hail in our area and numerous tornadoes. We are desperately trying to get our roof replaced and the hail has fallen all around our neighborhood, but not on our house. We're not asking for much, just enough to damage just our roof. Is that too much??

Anyway. Sunday when a huge storm was blowing in we had to go to a piano recital. I threw things in the pantry I didn't want to lose and was headed across the street to my old house to get in the basement. It was then that I realized we'd be safer at the church where the recital was. So off we went, in my car. Nicer than Shawn's. But with better insurance. I really was torn. Just as the first little piano player was lightly touching the keys with her nervous little fingers, the storm hit. There were only stained glass windows so we couldn't see anything, but boy could we hear it. If it wasn't hail, it was the fattest rain I've ever heard. An hour later we raced to the lobby to see what we could see. No hail was on the ground and nothing around the church was damaged. It really was the fattest rain. But as we were enjoying the reception, texts started coming in. One of Shawn's clients who lives in one of the ritziest neighborhoods had windows broken out on his house. Other people were getting the same messages from friends and family.

The news that night had amazing pictures and video. People using snow shovels to clean their driveways, hail falling through a tree and ripping off limbs, and shattered house windows and car windshields.

I hadn't seen any in person until yesterday when I parked next to this at Sam's.
Notice the whole in the top of the side mirror. And if you look at the reflection, the mirror is broken. The mirror on the other side looked the same. Look how far down the side it went. Must have been hailing sideways. I've seen it before. Even though there were no tornadoes with that storm it was still devastating to many.

It did keep us out of the basement though.

Can you believe they're so happy? I try to keep the mood light, but they seemed to be doing okay. This is from last Monday when tornadoes landed just miles away. We already have plans to be there tomorrow based on the weather forecast:(

But true to God's promise...a rainbow.

This video on youtube shows how intense it was. Yikes.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Garage Sale Fun

In preparing for a garage sale the thing that I always struggle with is how to hang the clothes. I know no one that has a rack. And believe me, I've asked. So this time I had it worked out. I had a plan. A PVC pipe and an opening in the bricks and the iron work in the garage.I know you're impressed. But I have a confession. I had to add a pool pole to get it long enough. But I had a sag in the middle. That's okay, I had a crutch. And when that turned our to be too short, I added a little chair someone had donated to sell.I know, I'm a genius. I of course didn't make any money on the chair, but I was proud. Until someone bumped into the crutch. I had to be brilliant again. Aha! Bicycle hooks and an old rope.I know, I know. Pure genius. It held the entire four days.

Before I redid the girls' room they had wooden blocks that spelled their names up in a bookshelf. It was so cute. Since McKinley, Kennedy, and Reagan's names decrease by one letter they were all stacked up on each other. But with their more sophisticated room it just didn't fit. So they went into the garage sale. A big basket of blocks didn't show well so I set about displaying them to their fullest potential. I couldn't spell the names because then people wouldn't want to buy them. So...And before you question the LN, he was my uncle. It was short for Lenes. Neither one of those would have been my choice for a name, personally. But he was an amazing man.

When my amazing friend Debbie surprised me by driving almost 2 hours to bring her family to help, her daughter did this.Mangle. Always a good word. And let's not compare a 4th graders words to a grown ups words please. I happen to like 3 letter words.

Garfield and his friends were entertained by all our word play. And my favorite thing? This. Because of the box I pulled it out of I'm pretty sure it was Mitchell's. It was a hit.

Thanks to all of you who came out and supported our garage sale! And to those of you who donated items for me to sell. And to those who came and helped me so I didn't lose my mind. You are more loved than you'll ever know!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Photography Class

Since I'm not smart enough to own my camera I am taking a class this month. The teacher is one of my favorite photographers. He took many of McKinley's first pictures. Each week I go, take three or four pages of notes, take a few pictures, say 'aha' a lot, and leave wondering if I will ever be able to take a good picture. I can get good pictures, but I don't know how I'm doing it. I just take a bunch, changing a few things each time, and get one that I like. Fine when I'm forcing my own children to sit still and smile, but future clients might not enjoy that.

Tonight was our second class and we had an assignment to bring five picture in our area of interest, taken with no flash in natural light. No problem. I am not a flash user and I have three daughters, easy. The story behind what I actually did is another post in itself. It involved barbed wire, poison ivy, ticks, and a lot of gas. I wasn't pleased at all, but got rave reviews from my teacher. I might know what I'm doing....well, maybe I just lucked out.

My favorite, and the one the teacher liked the most is this one. I know I've already shared it, but it's a favorite.

I played with it a bit and loved it with a texture. Kind of hides the fact that they're not dressed nicely, it's off center, and it's a complete accident!

This weeks assignment? Five pictures, no flash, field of interest, depth of field, full manual.

I'm not smart enough for my class.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Do you think we should have a lesson on kitchen chores? This was taken out of the dishwasher and put into the cabinet. I think I see something on it...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Laundry Weirdness

Since I've started following a lot of home decorating blogs, I've been seeing a lot of laundry rooms. Mine is now one of the ugliest places in the entire world. But it works so I'm not really complaining. Today I read this post and it got the wheels in my head spinning.

I know from tv shows and listening to friends that I do my laundry differently from the whole entire world. But I do it correctly, so I don't know why everyone else does it wrong.

Let me 'splain.

When I was in middle school and high school I worked at a church camp during the summers. When I lived with my grandparents my grandma did my laundry. But when I moved in with the college staff I suddenly had to do my own. I had no idea what I was doing the first time I headed to the laundry room. So I did what made sense; I read the tag. If it said warm, I washed in warm. All these years later it still makes sense. The manufacturer of the clothing tells you how to wash it. They should know, shouldn't they?

What I've learned from listening to my friends, and from being given hand-me-downs is, our clothes last longer. Mainly because they stay the right size. We are given so many clothes that have shrunk. Luckily we have three sizes of girls so we can find an owner for it:c)

I do wash whites separately, but only socks. I just hate the smell of feet and want those to be bleached. Also, since we own a trampoline, I find socks all around our property in all stages of stains.

After reading Chris's post, and all the comments, I wish I knew the magic way to keep up with laundry. I try to do one load a day but there are days when I start it and don't have time to finish it. Luckily my new homemade detergent and vinegar rinse keep the clothes from souring. My big thing is getting it folded. I can leave a load of clothes in the dryer for days. I of course will set it to fluff for 10 minutes planning to fold and then move on to something else and forget it. I don't mind folding but I will not put it away unless it's mine. My girls bring their laundry down, sort it, and put it away. They know how to do the washing but I don't want them to do it. They are so busy with school, voice, piano, playing, and being kids. I am a stay-at-home mom and that is part of my job. I do have them help me out from time to time, but it is my job. They will know how to do it, and do it correctly, before they leave my house.

So, anyone else out there do laundry the right way?? Or am I the only smart one? :c)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

I am spending my day resting.

Just what I needed.

Mother's Day is always bittersweet for me because even though I am the mother of three fabulous daughters, I don't have my mom anymore.

I don't need to stir up emotions but I did want to share a few pictures with you.

We wanted to wait three years to have children but after four months of marriage we found out I was pregnant. My mom found out the day after McKinley was born that she had breast cancer for the third time. She lived 5 1/2 months. We know that God intervened so that she could be a grandmother.

She was actually the first person to hold McKinley. Shawn took this picture. It has been framed and displayed in our house ever since.

Isn't it precious? It moves me every time I look at it.

And this one was after she was elected basketball queen in 1961. It hangs on my living room wall. I love that her dress had a pocket. That's popular now. I love how things come back in style. Except the 80's clothes I'm seeing now. That is not in the least bit necessary.

And now back to those three girls I have the joy of mothering. Look what they let me do to them today.Love it!

I hope that the mothers reading this have had just the kind of day they wanted to. I know I have!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Just Another Excuse

I love you all. More than my luggage as PW would say. And I know I'm ignoring you all. And you have my sincerest apologies. If I could put everything aside and blog I would. But until Saturday evening I am involved in the garage sale to end all garage sales. (Pictures to come of course)

So until then, remember I love you. And sometimes love means having to say, "That fruitcake crazed mom needs to keep her big yap shut and quit over committing herself!"

It's okay. I can handle it.

See you all soon. know what I mean:c)

Monday, May 3, 2010

Hi Ya'll!

I'm sitting somewhere in the Dallas in a hotel room getting to know my cousin Amy. Oh, and two of her sisters. And three other cousins will be joining us tonight. I am in family reunion heaven. I'm running on four and a half hours of sleep but could care less.

Because I don't have time to type, we have dinner plans soon and we're swapping stories, here are my Facebook statuses to catch you up.

*I thought I was in Texas...but with 11 Spanish radio stations and no country I'm beginning to think I took a wrong turn.

*Sitting in a parking lot in Irving, Texas...plucking my eyebrows...

*Crawling into bed at 5 am after a 6 hour gabfest with two cousins I met for the first time today. After a few hours of sleep we'll be starting again.

*I'm lost somewhere in the Dallas area looking for Sam Moon. Send help and jewelry please.

*Found it! It was worth the hunt. Now, where's my hotel?

*More cousins headed our way. Let's the festivities begin! Who needs sleep?

So plan on lots of fun posts coming your way about all the fun times I'm having!


Because of this blessed Facebook I am sitting somewhere in Dallas having dinner with 7 cousins. 5 of which I never knew I had:c)