Tuesday, July 29, 2008


We had a great time Saturday at the Snyder's cabin - it's become an annual tradition! To see more pictures enter the code "cabin" under the client section of my site HERE

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Friday, July 25, 2008


Today was absolutely and totally "one of those days". The kind where you wonder if you have ever actually done anything domestic, if you have ever been a wife, mother, or homemaker at all. Because today it seemed like it was my first day on the job! Believe it or not, I am in year SEVENTEEN of doing the whole "domestic" thing. Here is a list of things that I learned today:

1. When you just get out of bed and stumble to the bathroom, always check before you sit down to see if the toddler in the house has pottied just before you have.

2. You must always check behind the 13-year-old to make sure she has packed everything she needs for a day away from home, especially at a horse barn. Or just decide to let her reap the consequences of "not-thinking-things-through". Which today I chose the latter. See #13.

3. Never take a 2-year-old with you when you are selecting and scheduling a hardwood floor installation, because you will spend at least 50% of your time in the bathroom and leave the place not exactly sure what you ordered, what you paid for, or when it will be installed. You just will know you spent a lot of money.

4. If you allow this 2-year-old to insist on carrying the flowers she has selected to the check-out counter, be prepared to have a huge mess and return back to select more non-damaged flowers before making it to the check-out counter.

5. Never a great idea to give above-mentioned 2-year-old an entire Chik-Fil-A meal in her carseat if you are planning on bringing your dogs into your vehicle any time soon, see #15.

6. Planting flowers with a two-year-old when there is a baby pool close by does NOT make for very clean water in the pool.

7. When deciding to empty this baby pool, which is on a high deck, and you have recently spread mulch under the deck, be prepared for all the mulch to end up at the bottom of the hill in your backyard.

8. Upon deciding how to rid your children's clothes, bathing suits and beach towels of the funky smells that consume them when they are left lying wet in garages, the backs of vans, or other various places, for several days - one should not always take the advice of friends. Adding vinegar and baking soda to the laundry seemed like a wonderful, old-time remedy to rid the funky smells. However, if you conjure up the memories of the vinegar and baking soda volcanoes that we used to make as kids - multiply that times 1,000 and that was my laundry room today. Perhaps I should have listened more carefully on the actual amounts.

9. Trying to rid your laundry room of foaming baking soda and laundry detergent is not easy to do with any assortment of containers and/or towels. Rinsing the laundry piece by piece in the utility sink is not a feasible idea either.

10. When all else fails, take said laundry outside and hang it all over the fence and just use a garden hose.

11. When you let two puppies in the backyard with wet, sliding, mulch avalanches, and drying laundry, be prepared to wash two dogs and pick up dirty laundry off the ground. Also, make sure the gate is securely closed or your puppies will have a grand-time galavanting around the neighborhood.

12. Placing your charger in your cell phone + two hyper puppies = broken off charger inside cell phone.

13. When you get a message that says "Mom, when you come to pick me up, bring me some dry clothes and underclothes", you should worry. You will arrive to find her possibly wearing clothes that of which belong to someone's younger brother, apparently because of a forgotton bathing suit. See #2.

14. Before traveling one hour round-trip to retrieve oldest child from all-consuming, never-ending, can-think-of-nothing-else-but-horses riding stable, be sure to contact her by her cell phone - which, I might add, was purchased for her with great hopes of me actually being able to contact her when the need arose - however, I have yet to call her ONE SINGLE TIME in which I actually get a "hello?", apparently riding pants don't have pockets. Time to buy the kid a cell-phone clip. But, I digress. Before traveling one hour round trip to retrieve oldest child from ....... anyway...... be prepared for that child to not necessarily return home with you. Horse trainers love to keep those 13-year-old-can-think-of-nothing-but-horses girls around because they can get an AMAZING amount of work done in a barn. Her bedroom bears a sign "I'd Rather Muck a Stall Than Clean My Room". How very, very true. "I'll bring her home!", horse trainer says. (I am very thankful for Mrs. Leigh - she rocks!) However, after $40 of gas is spent on that round-trip, it's a tiny bit frustrating.

15. Returning home empty-handed except for the unhappy two-year-old in the Chik-Fil-A car seat with two puppies sniffing and licking every nook and cranny of her and her carseat does not make for a pleasurable trip home. See #5.

16. Do not try to attempt to cook dinner when you have had this kind of day - call for take out. HOWEVER, when the little Chinese guys arrives with your dinner at the front-door, it is not a great idea to try to answer the door, answer the ringing phone, and keep two puppies from attacking the little Chinese guy with the food all at the same time. You will lose.

So, I learned a lot today - some of it, I knew better, but didn't have many other options. Some of it - who knew??? Live and learn.....

I think I'll go to bed now.

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Thursday, July 24, 2008


They just looked so cute with their matching pig-tails, sunglasses and missing two front teeth that I just had to snap some pictures!


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Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Today has been so pleasant. No rushing around (except for the 9:30 ortho appt). We all enjoyed cooking together at lunchtime. After Kirsten got her lower braces on (again), she wanted some potato soup, so we made it from scratch. It was so fun for all four of us to be cooking together. We talked about what it would be like 20 years from now with all of us cooking in the kitchen together on Thanksgiving with all of their own children running around. Then while Boo took her nap we all had some quiet reading time and then some chocolate chip cookie making (again from scratch). Those of you who know me will be shocked that we cooked two things today! This afternoon there was a perfect summer afternoon thunderstorm (not in Kirsten's opinion), it was so refreshing. After it passed, the girls had a grand time jumping in the puddles outside and exploring all the worms and frogs everywhere. These are the days of summer that I long for. When I dream of summer in the middle of winter, it's these days that come to mind. The simple unhurried pleasures of summer.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008


How cool is that? This is Hannah's BFF Maddie - her straight hair worked much better for this than Hannah's curly hair. Hannah's hair went every which way!!

I think I need to try again with a less busy background, but I thought these were so cool! Plus, having the baby pool on the deck keeps the water MUCH cleaner!

Emily's attempt - she gets an A+ for effort!!

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Monday, July 21, 2008


This week is the first week of summer that we actually have nothing on the calendar. Don't get me wrong, we still have five thousand little things to do, but nothing huge and consuming. It's SOOO nice!! I found myself this afternoon with a sleeping two-year-old, two sleeping puppies, Hannah at a friend's house and Kirsten so contentedly reading in her room. Instead of running around and doing the thousands of things I "should" be doing, I decided to spend some alone time with my camera and the great outdoors!! (oh-la-la!). I just walked around our yard and shot some things that I thought looked interesting. And wow, I even had time to post them before Boo woke up!

See the bumble bee??
I caught him in mid-flight - so cool!!

I have a love-hate affair with this birch tree. I love it's shade and it's cool bark, but it drops leaves and sticks ALL summer long..... sigh....

Hannah's wildflowers around her water-butterfly garden.

A robin...
I love summer!!! :) Happy Monday.

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BRACES!! Thats right. Braces that are NOT on Kirsten's teeth. She went on Saturday to have her lower braces put on. A few hours later, one of the brackets popped off. Then all of the sudden they all started popping off and the entire thing came off!! Is that the craziest thing you have ever heard of? The brackets look a little odd because they have "bumpers" on them, which I think was the culprit to begin with. Plus, they didn't attach them to the back molars yet either, which is why there are only six brackets here. Ya just never know, do ya??

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Our friends the Webbs were in a drama camp recently and we had a great time attending their final production of "Back to the 50's!"

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Saturday, July 19, 2008


It was a big day for my little boys. They graduated from puppy kindergarten!! We have been working so hard on their training, and they are doing so well. We can now say that they have offically mastered knowing their names (that was actually tricky with two dogs), housebreaking, coming when called, sitting, staying (finally!), lying down, settling, not jumping up when greeted (mmmm- debateable), loose leash walking, and they are even starting to roll-over! We are so proud of them and we had so much fun at training classes. We attended classes at our local PetSmart which was actually a brand-new store. Our class was the very first graduating class at that store, so the boys' picture will be on the wall of the store for as long as the store is open!! Isn't that exciting? They got to wear their little graduation caps and have a little parade around the store while they made the announcement. We even played a great game of hide and seek in the store to reinforce "come when called". The Pet Parent (that would be me), would go and hide somewhere in the store, the trainer would start each puppy at the front door and we would then start calling for our puppy - the puppies would take off following our voices and would always find us in record time!! We even stepped it up a notch and we would continually run and try to "keep away" from the puppies, but they were always faster than we were and found us very quickly!! The boys received new toys after graduation today - Emily is holding them in the picture, they are the "PetSmart" loofa dog that you see in all the commercials, but they are dressed in a graduation cap and gown and have a fun squeaker inside! We will be attending the intermediate classes in a few weeks - stay tuned!!

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Thursday, July 17, 2008


The girls have been in horse camp all week, and they are having a blast!! They come home soooo tired though. Poor Miss Emily misses them terribly all day. When they come home she literally gets right in the "middle" of everything they do!! I loved these pictures.

Notice how all three of their mouths look exactly the same here? It's the "really good show" look.

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