slide show

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Sunday Snapshot {All Hallows' Eve}

This boy is in his element!
Oh my!  
What is next?

Ni Hao Y'all

Friday, October 29, 2010

Tips-n-Tricks {kitchen basket}

Running a household of 8 people is crazy busy with a lot of things to keep track of.  No Duh!   So if you've been reading the ramblings of this crazy mama for a while, you'll know that I'm all about making the house run as smoothly and efficiently as possible.  Then if I pile all the little saved minutes together, then there's a chance I'll find the time to
A) read a book that doesn't have pictures in it
B) find an outfit that is stain free
C) stare absent mindedly into nothingness
D) get a pedicure
OK, that last one is just plain crazy talk!  Don't know what I was thinking!

So here's another little crazy thing that makes life just a little bit easier.

The kitchen basket-
It's not pretty.  It could be pretty, but it's not.  In it is anything used daily by the younger & medium kiddos that a mom should monitor.  Usage of these items in the bathroom will not be inspected like they need to be.  So I have them out front and center, right on the kitchen counter, near the kitchen sink, where I will see these things get done.  They are also up and out of the way for the littlest kiddos not to be tempted to get into them.  Some items stay in there permanently and others come and go with need.

Our kitchen basket started with just the younger children's tooth brushes and tooth paste.  It was born out of a need for me to help brush the little kiddo's teeth and not finding the opportunity to run back to their bathroom to do it.  Several months of Are you sure you brushed reaaallllllly well?  and a nightmare of a dentist appointment with 6 cavities later, the kitchen basket was born.  Supplies are all right where I spend most of my time, in the kitchen.  And the kiddos brush their teeth right in the kitchen sink where I can monitor how long and how well they did it and follow up every once in a while with a quick brushing of their teeth myself.  It also makes it so convenient for me to throw the tooth brushes in the dishwasher every couple weeks to disinfect them.

But also added to this basket is anything that we use daily.

Sunblock.  All 4 of my older kiddos put on sunblock daily since melanoma runs in my family.  The boys use a pretty good sunblock since they are outside much more of the time.  (PS - this is the BEST sunblock out there for any of you fellow crazy sunblock groupies like myself.  It is called Blue Lizard.  What makes it so good is the Zinc.  Sunblock with zinc is THE BEST.  Blue Lizard also goes by Australia sunblock standards which have far higher stands than the US sunblock guidelines.  When you try it, you feel the difference.  It is more expensive.  If you're serious about skin cancer, you won't regret it.)  PS-Blue Lizard if you hear me out there is cyber land... that was a free plug.  Keeping the kiddos lathered up is expensive.  Could you offer me a perk?

Tooth paste - Patch has a reaction to regular tooth paste (sodium laural sulfate) that leaves him with constant cancer soars in his mouth.  Thus he has his own stupidly expensive special tooth paste.

Flossers-They're suppose to be in there, but I'm out right now.

Hydrogen peroxide- Livy has been having some trouble remembering to clean her newly pierced ears.  My daily reminders have hopefully gotten her in a better habit.  So this item will be leaving soon.

Athlete's foot spray - Jude has reoccurring athlete's foot likely due to the fact that he still wears his brace/boots 12 hours a day.  Patch has reoccurring athlete's foot because he's an insanely active boy who doesn't like to wear socks.  And his feet stink to high heaven!

Deodorant - This is a very recent audition to the kitchen basket.  It's chocolate scented deodorant.  Go ahead and laugh with me now.  It's ok.  I'm laughing too!   I don't care what scent it is as long as Patch wears it.

Also added are any meds that a kiddo might be taking.  

Our kitchen basket is really just a small little thing, but it really makes a huge difference in how smoothly our morning and evening routine goes.  These things get done, more regularly, and more efficiently now.
And we haven't had a single cavity since!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Demeter lends a helping hand {part II}

Then the dirt movers offered assistance.

We prepare the soil and dig the hole...
 Pull the flowers from their pots...
...and put them in the hole...
 ...and push the dirt back in...
 ...and admire the flowers...
 ...and give our brother a turn...
 ...and watch the big boys play in the middle of the street, 'cause their boys after all, and it's a nice flat surface, so why wouldn't they just stop right in the middle of the road.  Not to mention that that one kid doesn't even have on any shoes!  And no supervision in sight!
Someone should really go tell their mother!
 Jude takes his turn putting the flowers in...
 ...but Tess can't resist moving dirt.  I think that's a 3 year old thing, right?  Moving dirt, any dirt of any kind in any place, is just irresistible when your 3 years old.
 Then Liv helps the babes water.
 Gotta remember, I'm a country gal stuck in the city, so drinking out of the hose is second nature.
 Pink chipped polish and dirt under the nails.   Does it get any better than that?
It's the stuff ordinary miracles are made of!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Demeter lends a helping hand {part I}

I'm sorry.
I've said it this same time every year since I started blogging. 
I'm sorry.
I'm really am.  But it is what it is. And it just has to be this way.  
I mean I didn't plan for it to be this way.  I didn't plan for you to live in 6 months of freezing ice and sleet and snow.  I live in the desert where yes, we do have to hibernate for several months, but none of our hibernation involves gloves, slipping on ice, or scraping windows!

We now enter the time of year when we desert dwellers come out of our dens.  For months now, we've been confined to our homes.  Finally, after about 4 months of heat-induced isolation, the cooler weather has come to the desert, and the desert rats are emerging, giddy and ready for outside activities.  

So I'm so sorry to the residents of New Jersey, Connecticut, Colorado, or (help me now) Wisconsin or Minnesota!  My consolation to y'all who are about to uncover your snow shovels and see if those moon boots still fit your kiddos.  Now is the time the desert rats get to flaunt green grass, flowers, bare tootsies, shorts and sunshine!  

Again, I'm sorry, but it's just the way things are!  

I submit to you exhibit A-The planting season.  Now is the time we sow little seeds, and baby plants in the soil and watch them sprout and blossom. 
Tomatoes.  We actually have about 4 different varieties growing.
The sweet basil is gonna be a bumper crop!
2 varieties of Thai Basil for all those Viet recipes
Mojito mint
I got 'em all planted early this year.  I'll just have to be sure to cover them during the 3-4 frost/freeze night that we'll have over the winter.  And the babes just love getting out to water each day.
Oooooooo, it's gonna be a good growing season!

Coming next--Part II where the babes find it necessary to play in the mud and move dirt around help

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sunday Snapshot {The stuff dreams are made of}

This is the stuff dreams are made of.
Wonderfully glorious, sweet smelling, soft as can be, makes the sweetest sounds, heaven sent dreams.
And I know first hand that this mama and papa dreamed of this bundle for a long while, far longer than 9 months.  And like this babe's dad said, not a sign of freezer burn anywhere!
World, meet M.
M, meet the world.
My newest nephew.  And by new I mean really new, like 48 hours old.
With photos in the hospital you can get images complete with hospital ID bands, the stereotypical blue and pink striped blanket... and wrinkles!  Not the I'm-42-years-old-and-things-are-starting-to-falling-off-my-body wrinkles, but the I've-been-soaking-in-a-warm-bath-for-9-months wrinkles.
Simply dreamy.
Speaking of wrinkles, somewhere along the line, I became totally smitten with M's feet.  I mean look at those feet, with all those-fresh-out-of-the-womb wrinkles.  There's wisdom in those feet, I just know it!  (I have no idea what that actually means, but it sounds deep and prophetic so I'm going with it!)
I took more pictures of his feet than anything else.  That's probably wrong, but not really.
And did you notice the cute extra skin for a boy to grow into?
God is truly astounding!

Ni Hao Y'all

Friday, October 22, 2010

Photo Gallery {48 hours old}

More to come from this shoot.  Couldn't resist posting for all the family far away.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Photo Gallery {Love}

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pumpkin patch with Grammy, Grandpapa, and Junebug

Let's start with a warning...
This can't really be necessary, can it?
 Don't let this angelic face fool you.  A melt down of momentous proportion will occur before the trip is done.
 Grammy and Sunny posing for pictures.  Isn't it kinda funny when your kiddos get taller than you?
 This is Junebug, my brother's daughter, and my extremely cute niece!  She has the bluest eyes and fairest skin ever.  She's about a year older than the babes, and it was such fun to visit with her.  She especially liked hanging out with Boo.
My father doing his best Teddy Roosevelt impersonation.  Ok, he actually always looks like this all the time.  
And also the reason that I have an instant fondness for any man with a handlebar mustache.  
Gotta have a hay ride!
I loved this pumpkin patch because it was actually a real pumpkin patch!  Pumpkins still on the vine right there for the picking!
Then the melt down happened.  In all fairness, she was without a nap and was hot and sticky and tired.  She looks kinda like she's gonna attack the first person she encounters.  Oh wait, that was me, and she did!
But first I took a picture of her right there in the pumpkin field.  It was a screaming thrashing snotty mess for about 10 minutes.  
But we were finally able to distract her with the pumpkins.  Again, she looks like an angel!

Enter pumpkin patches at your own risk of injury or...
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