Tuesday, July 31, 2012

214/366: Boys are Fickle

On our last road trip, I purchased some drawing books for the boys. Little Man got How To Animals and Big Boy got How to Monsters Robots & Action Fighters.

BB cried. He wanted animals too. I knew this would happen when I was standing at Barnes & Noble. I stood there contemplating for 20 minutes. If I got two animal books, one would be better than the other and they would complain. Obviously I like HIM better than the other, or some other false logic they would come up with. So I decided to go with opposites. At least they wouldn't fight over how many different types of turtles were in each book.

And then, last night happened.

"Mom, you were right. Even though I really love animals, this is cool. I can use my imagination better with this book."

Monday, July 30, 2012

213/366: A Monday Like No Other

For those that are friends on Facebook, I promise I won't gloat about my new Monday regimen. 

But today, today is all mine.  The boys are at camp and I am not required to do a thing.

I was going to do a couple leases for project work, but the program isn't working.  (Darn, kind of, not really).  I didn't want to step away for too long and not be able to motivate myself to work again.

So, in light of my open time frame I could:

1.  Crochet - work on Big Boy's blanket that I started when it was cold outside.
2.  Clean my studio.
3.  Photograph new items for WashMyBooty shop.
4.  Clean off the bar in our living room to make way for the fish tank (that is still in it's box(es) sitting in my living room, dining room AND family room.
5.  Nothing, aka Browse Pinterest.

If I want to do #3, I probably have to do #2 to get to #3 items.

If I want to do #3, I should do number #4 since one part is in my 'natural light' for taking photos.

Maybe #1.

That's the simplest.  I don't want to overwhelm on the first day, right?

Sunday, July 29, 2012

212/366: Zoo Party

Today, at 9:24 am...I started a cake.
Mostly, because that's how I roll.  Pressure is best for me.  You see, the party was today.  At 2:00 pm

No problem, plenty of time.  I was only making a normal sea turtle cake...

I used Pound Cake, the best for cutting, shaping and keeping good edges.  I made a 9x13, 2 rounds and one loaf sized cakes.   The 9x13 and one round became the body and shell, the other round was shaped into front fins.  The back fins came from the section I cut from the 9x13.  And the head was shaped from half of the loaf cake.

The shell was white chocolate with a couple milk chocolate pieces melted (added green food coloring for the top part of the shell) and cooled on parchment paper.  I poured a thin layer and when it was set, but not hard, I cut it in the shell shapes with a pizza cutter.  I liked how that chocolate worked out. I tried one batch of chocolate over an overturned bowl to create a shell shape, but I couldn't cut it up like I did with the green, so had to chuck that batch.

For a 'last minute' cake, it was pretty good. 

Continuing with the turtle theme, we celebrate Little Man's 6th birthday at the Buffalo Zoo with Timmy the Turtle:

and Peanuts the Parrot:

It was a good day.

With a very happy boy!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

211/366: Liebster Blog Award

Super Saturday!  My pal MK in Chicago (also my maid of honor at my wedding and the best blind friendship set up ever!) granted me an award.  The Liebster Blog Award is given to upcoming bloggers who have 200 followers or less. The word Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.

As I'm not a huge fan of chain mail, I can't help think this is something like that, but since I have no post planned for today, why not?

Here are the questions I have been asked to answer:

1. What is the last good book you read?  It's been a while.  I really enjoyed Hunger Games, and read it mostly so I could talk to others about it.  The worst thing I've read is Fifty Shades of Stupid.  Someone, give that girl a backbone and tell her Inner Goddess to go suck it.  (Did I offend?  ech)

2. If you could learn to cook one thing, what would it be?  My mother-in-law's pasta sauce.  She has told me many times, but I just can't quite 'get' it.

3. Please describe any exciting travel plans in your future.  Exciting?  Well, we just purchased our first used pop-up trailer and are very excited to take our family camping.

4. Where would you most like to travel to?  I would love to go to Spain.  It was our second choice for our honeymoon, haven't been anywhere fancy since that honeymoon.

5. What important items are you out of in your house right now?  Food.  Cereal.  I just got back from Target with laundry soap, so we will be clean and hungry.

6. Name three songs on your exercise/clean the house playlist?  Clean the house?  What's that?

7. What is your favorite form of internet procrastination?  Pinterest, for sure.  But I'm doing something with that in September...Pintember!

8. What other writing project would you like to tackle beyond (or within) your blog? A novel? Memoir?  I have some early drafts for a book.  The concept has changed a couple times, but it always comes back to humor, creativity, and life lessons.

9. What is your idea of happiness?  When none of my boys (including the big one) are grumpy.

10. If you could have any job, what would it be?  I think I have it.  I get to do a little of everything all the while having time for my boys.

11. What would you do if you had the house to yourself tonight?  Turn all the lights out in the house, rent movies and fall asleep on the couch. Although renting movies would force me to get out of the house right now.  Maybe just catch up on my DVR.

I would like to encourage you to check out some of my favorite reads and offer those bloggers the opportunity to receive the Liebster Blog Award!

MK@ Tiny Dancers
Lisa @ 600Square
Sam @ Jeans and a Sweatshirt
Lisa @ Polka Dot Cottage (she isn't so small in followers, but worth every bit of this award)
Julianne @ Love Life

Ladies, MK excluded, here are your questions:
1. What was the last thing you ate?
2. If you could learn to cook one thing, what would it be?

3. If you were already in your car, and had 1 hour to waste, what store would you visit?
4. Where would you most like to travel to?

5. What important items are you out of in your house right now?

6. Name three songs on your exercise/clean the house playlist?

7. What is your favorite form of internet procrastination?

8. What other writing project would you like to tackle beyond (or within) your blog? A novel? Memoir?

9. What is your idea of happiness?

10. If you could have any job, what would it be?

11. What would you do if you had the house to yourself tonight?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

208/366: Wednesday Photo

Anyone know what this is?  Bought it at the annual perennial sale at Mischler's, and I can't find the tag...I love it!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

207/366: Tuesday Photo

Clean pond water!  Best investment of the year, the UV filter.

Monday, July 23, 2012

206/366: Week in Photos

These last five days of my full-time working mom life is here!  In order to not leave others with my neglected work, I'm putting all my focus into my 'real' work life, you know, the one that comes with an actual paycheck.

I will be working on a project basis come September when the boys go back to school, but that is many weeks away.

So, for the next five days, know that I am stressed and excited in the same moment.

Five days of photos...

Sunday, July 22, 2012

205/366: Bucket List

Today, we checked off my dream of having a pop up camper for my family. It brings memories of family trips when I was a child.

I am so excited to give those same memories to my kids.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

204/366: Around the Yard

Bumble on the Gallardia with my Micro lens (yes, I was really close to this guy).

 Lime colored hosta beginning to flower.

Friday, July 20, 2012

203/366: {this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

202/366: A-Double N-OUN-MENT-s

Starting this September is my project called "PINTEMBER".

I don't know about you, but I have a TON of pins on Pinterest. So many that I pin things twice because I have forgotten that I already pinned the same item a month ago. It's time for action! In September, I am going to make, bake, create, craft, clean and transform.

I will post my completed project on my blog and invite you to share your creation in the comments of my blog, or include the link to your blog with you Pintember post. I have set up a board on Pinterest of some items that I think I can handle for the month, you can see that board here.

It's time to take the virtual ideas and make them a reality. Will you join me?

Secondly, thanks for all three of you that played along via Facebook or to my actual face (thanks, Tom, but you are still wrong).

The produce is actually a White Pickling Cucumber. 
I know.  It isn't white and it surely doesn't look like a cucumber.  I'll let you know if I get any others on the vine that look differently, so far, they all appear to be want-a-be lemons.

Lastly, guess what?  I'm retiring from full time work!  Next Friday is my last full time day.  I'm going to spend August with my boys.  Traveling and camping and making boy crafts.

In September, I hope to do part time project work with my same company that has been so so good to me in the past 13 years (yes, 13 years working for the same smart guy). 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

201/366: Name that Produce

We are going to play a little game today.
  I plucked this from my garden last night. 

Can anyone tell me what it is?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

200/366: The Summit

The sight of 'snow' in the blazing summer is a welcome one.

The boys go to a day camp in a building with ice rinks.  Every morning, the Zamboni drops a load of snow and ice on the parking lot. 

I could lay in that right now.

Today is 'Special Persons' day at the camp.  I'm picking up my dad and we are going to hopefully, sit inside in the air conditioning! 

The weather is supposed to be kinder tomorrow.

I need it to be kinder tomorrow.  Momma is grumpy.

Monday, July 16, 2012

199/366: Rain, Finally

Most people stay inside when it rains.  Not me.

Rain makes for some amazing photographs.

Every year I complain about how hot I am.  Luckily, I only have another two weeks at work, tied to this desk as the afternoon sun beats through my curtains like a cancer.

The rain.  It was good.  Didn't help our humidity, but the plants enjoyed it, even for a short time.

And the boys?  Of course they wanted to go outside the minute it started and waited in the garage ready to pounce.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

198/366: Sink, Float and Fireworks

Little Man requested a bath last night. It was so hot in our non air conditioned home, that I could have added ice cubes and they'd melt in seconds.

Instead, he decided to dump his Lego figures in and see if they would float or sink. We learned that the pants float, but the heads sink.

With his newly diagnosed epilepsy, I sat on my bed (in front of the fan) and watched him play.

Then it happened.

He requested a Katy Perry song. Of course I went immediately to iTunes.


And I played it. Then louder. Then on repeat.

Over and over and over.

Both boys requested it again this evening. You see, we spent some time at Dave & Busters and walked out with a disco ball and two fiber optic light thingies.

We now have a party room. Complete with lights, Mario Kart and Katy Perry.

It's only a $2 cover on Monday nights.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

197/366: Diagnosis Great

We have a Little Man with a clean brain! The MRI showed nothing abnormal. The EEG showed healthy brain waves with many "sparkles" and one instance os an absence seizure during the whole 40 minute test. The "sparkle" is the wave that sets up the seizure.

We will start the medication this weekend and hope to have him up to the full dosage by the start of first grade.

It's a great day. Thank you for all your prayers and good wishes.

Friday, July 13, 2012

196/366: {this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.

A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

195/366: Wolverine Claws

Last week, Little Man and I made a recipe from the back of his activity book.  He was adamant on us purchasing all the ingredients and making these as soon as possible.

We only need the biscuits, so you may very likely have all the ingredients already.

The recipe...simple (that's what I like).

Melt your butter in a dish big enough to drop the biscuit in, same with the cinnamon and sugar mix.

Start by dipping in the butter, then into the sugar mix.  A helper is important here, they make it more fun.

Our butter was still hot from the melting, so we used a spoon.  I would recommend this, it makes it less messy once you get into the sugar stage.
I then took a pair of kitchen scissors and cut two 'claws' into the biscuit and pinched the back end a bit to try to make them appear more claw like and less paw like.  I used my oldest, blackest cookie sheet for this, knowing we would have burned sugar all over the place.

They smelled delicious...not gluten free, but the smell won't hurt my belly.  Like I said, much more paw like, in fact, they don't resemble Wolverine Claws at all. 

And their taste...the Little Man said, "MMMMmmmmmm".  He stated, "These are so good, I'm going to eat them all."

He was doing pretty good, until claw four stalled him, but he tried!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

194/366: My Trooper

This boy amazes me.

Every day.

We awoke at 4:00am so that he would be sleepy for today's test at 10:30am.

He woke up without a complaint. He got dressed without a grumble. Ate his pancakes without me having to cut them.

And he remained still for his MRI. He kept his eyes opened when prompted during the EEG.

You see, I had noticed some blank staring on his part in the past several months. It had increased in frequency and when my mother-in-law noticed it, I decided it was too important to wait until the end of August for their annual checkups to ask about. Friday he and I went to the pediatrician and she confirmed my symptoms with what I believed to be "Absence Seizures".

On his birthday, we met with the pediatric neurologist. He also agreed with the diagnosis and ordered the two tests to confirm the cause of the seizures.

Today, he is my trooper. I didn't think he would be any less.

Saturday, we will meet with the neurologist and look at all the pictures and graphs from Little Man's head.

Fingers crossed for positive results.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

193/366: Favorite Candy

Last week, Tom asked me which candy bar was my favorite. Random questions like this are par for the course with this husband of mine. Usually, the go to random discussion type is meats. Yes, meats. Any type, any cut, any blend. Meats.

The candy bar question was just another question. He did, however, offer to buy my favorite candy bar if he passed his final board exam for his pharmacy license.

Guess what happened this evening???

192/366: Tomorrow

Another quote, trying to inspire myself to not worry.

There is nothing I can do, but be strong.

Monday, July 9, 2012

191/366: Strength

Source: joyshope.com via Susan on Pinterest

190/366: My Days Since the Fourth

This is a beautiful baby girl that I was thrilled to capture on film (technically not film, but electronic file) yesterday.  It was a highlight of my five not so great days.

You see, on the Fourth, I was in the wrong place and took a rogue roman candle to the thighs.  It hit my right leg and bounced to my left and danced around in my dress before dying out.  When it happened, I thought of my dress.  That cute dress I had just gotten.  It had a huge hole right in the middle.  It wasn't until I was told to go in the house and make sure my legs were okay that I actually felt any pain.  I was so mad about my dress! 

To make a gross story safe for your reading pleasure, many days with my skirt hiked up to my pickachu and ice packs on my thighs.  We are in the tightening, scabbing stage, so although it's uncomfortable, it isn't messy with lotions and creams.

I have no moral to this story.  Well, yes, if you are going to light fireworks, be safe with them.

This leads me to 12:30 am July 5th...with ice packs on my lap our new backyard neighbor was STILL blowing off illegal explosives, and they were loud!  I thought I had a slight case of PTSD.  Every whizzing sound followed by a pop had me reliving the earlier demise of my thigh skin. I wanted so much to call the cops, but that would mean I would have to rise from my location with my ice and get the phone.  That, and the grapevine told me that he was just released from a correctional facility.  I'm not messing with that one.

The major works subsided at 12:45 am.  Which was nice. 

Until 1:28 am, when he sent another one off.

Quiet again.

Until 2:41 am, when he sent yet another one off.

Quiet again.

Until 3:47 am, when yet another friggin shot woke me.

Quiet again.

You'd think I would call the cops at this point.  I was so tired.  In so much pain, I just fell asleep again.


4:21 am the final shot.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

189/366: Today

I feel very much like these rocks today. I'm still holding.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

188/366: Happy Birthday, Little Man

This boy has been many things to me, but the one thing that he is really good at is looking at me to see if I need a smile or a hug or an "I Love You".

As if he has a sixth sense which is 'comfort', this boy is going to make waves in this world.

Happy Sixth Birthday Little Man...and don't you worry, I saved this shirt for your son.

Friday, July 6, 2012

187/366: {this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

186/366: Firefly Cupcake

Okay, my Gluten Free followers...or the followers that love a Gluten Free person and want to make them happy in their belly.

Get yourself a Firefly Cupcake from East Aurora, NY.  Run, don't walk.  This is the peanut butter chocolate cake which was very good.

The one not pictured, was the apple cinnamon.  That, my friends was amazing.  The best cupcake I have had since 2003.  Seriously.  I may need to take a road trip this weekend for more. 

Cupcakes make me happy.

Monday, July 2, 2012

183/366: Half Way Post

Here we are.

Half way complete.  Technically, this post should have appeared yesterday.

I'm a day off.  Somewhere in April I flopped.

Or flipped.

Either way, I'm close.  I'll make up for it.

Yesterday was a great day.  Flea Market, Sunshine and Family.  We had family in town from a few states away and it was so nice to see them.

They are the type of family that are friends first.  Friends that allow you to pick up where you left off.  Friends that still laugh with you and know when it's okay to laugh AT you and still not hurt any feelings.


Sunday, July 1, 2012

182/366: Sunday Morn with My Pops

The first Sunday of the month is my favorite Sunday.

It means Flea Market with my dad!  We go early.  Real early.  I like it that way.

We are home around 10 if we go slow, or 9:15 when we focus.  I've talked about the flea market here, and although neither of the boys were interested today, it was still a learning experience.

Each time I go, I learn more about decoys.  One can never know enough about decoys.  You never know when it will come in handy.  Hunting, Jeopardy, Trivial Pursuit...useless knowledge to impress a neighbor.

I got a couple things for the Etsy shop and a couple things for the boys.

But, more importantly, some quality time with my Pops.