Monday, June 30, 2008


Photos of Hannah at the camping trip/water park. She took her friend Sophia with her on this trip (we've promised the kids they can each bring a friend on a camping trip this summer!). Hannah and Sophia were "bored" less than an hour into the water park. I couldn't believe it - bored?? At a water park?? What the heck is wrong with kids these days? I spent $120 to get us all in to the park, and in the end, Hannah and Sophia were "bored", I went down one slide, Hayley didn't get wet at all, and only Jeff, Arlie and Harrison got any use out of their $16 admission! Geesh. Anyway, Hannah had fun showing off, being a goofball (as usual!), and teaching Harrison and Arlie dances which they showed off at the campsite.


Some photos of Harrison at the water park. He and Arlie spent the entire eight hours the park was open running from slide to slide. They did not waste a minute. He got a nasty sunburn despite two applications of waterproof sunscreen (they really mean it when they say "reapply after swimming" - but how do you do that at a water park?). But he had a blast and also spent a lot of time riding his bike around the RV park with Arlie.


This is how Hayley spent our camping trip away. She read and re-read the same book (which she had already read!) and didn't even get a drop of water on her at the water park! She did spend a lot of time riding my bike around and around the RV park. That ended abruptly when she came limping back, pushing the bike, and explained she had crashed! She got cuts on her hand and knee and her hip. Good thing we have a first aid kit in the camper! She was a champion when it came to packing up and unloading the car when we got home. Thanks Hayley!


Arlie also complained that there wasn't enough of "just her" on my blog, so here are some photos of Arlie taken this weekend at Birch Bay. We camped at the RV park Saturday night and spent the whole day at the waterslides on Sunday. Everyone got sunburned, I got a headache, and we decided to go home early - packed up and left around 9:45 p.m.! The RV park was nothing special, so we didn't see any point in staying overnight again only to pack up in the morning and come home. We all got to sleep in our own beds and have a whole day to just recover. We leave again in three days for another camping adventure!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Sleepy babies!

The picture on the right is how I found Harrison and Arlie this morning! They slept in the family room, and were watching a movie when I kissed them goodnight. This morning Harrison had migrated from the recliner to the couch to snuggle up with Arlie. She had been gone a week to Spokane and he missed her a lot! They are such good buddies. After a longer absence (more than a weekend) those two will be joined at the hip for a good day or two before they regress back into their normal sibling state and start fighting! I think it's cute! I'll also enclose a photo of them awake, one of the first photos I took with my new camera. Sigh........they're growing up so fast!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Downward Dog!

In a moment of zen-like relaxation, Charlie does yoga in the sunbeam. Check out this downward dog - perfect form! Ohmmmmm...............Namaste!

Danger, Danger Young Will!

The adjacent photo shows what happens when you leave your flatiron on, sitting on the carpet! Yes, this is Hayley's latest shenanigan........after repeated warnings to NOT use the flatiron in her room or leave it on, EVER! As punishment, she will not get to use her flatiron for a week (much to her dismay and horror!), and if and when we need to "fix" this very dangerous mistake, it will come out of her pocket. In the meantime, she will just have to live with it and thank God that we didn't all burn up in the middle of the night! (She was conveniently at a sleepover so would not have perished by her own hand!). And this is the kid who has asked me if she can burn CANDLES in her room? I mean, a hot ceramic plate is one thing, an open flame entirely another. No, I like my house and I'd like to live here a lot longer. We all make mistakes, and this was a scary one. But perhaps something good will come out of it - perhaps she will learn to embrace her curly hair? In the meantime, heed this warning - do NOT allow your teenagers to use dangerous items such as hair enhancement products unsupervised!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Last night, in a rare opportunity of "quality time" with the kids, we played a game and then moved on to singing karaoke (at which point Hayley returned to her SIMS game on the computer - no singing for her!). Hannah and Harrison have been blessed with the rare gift of a decent singing voice (not inherited, I assure you, by either their father or I!). I mean, I like to sing and I don't sound like a dying cat, but let's just say there won't be any recording contracts in my future. However, these two possess something I don't and I'm amazed when I hear them sing. They belted out "The Star Spangled Banner" and it was amazing! They sang "Hero" and almost made me cry. Hannah sang "My Immortal", despite a sore throat and an ear that was clogged with pool water so that she couldn't hear herself sing, and it still was incredible. Now, if there is one talent I'd love to possess, it's singing. I've always wished I could sing in an amazing voice. Instead, I sing in an average voice with a limited range. Sure, it was adequate when I was singing "The Hayley Song" to her when she was a baby, and it's kind of funny when I do my version of "Shortenin' Bread" (especially in the middle of antique store in Snohomish), and I can "Bust a Move" on karaoke like nobody's business, but am I a singer? Decidedly not. Does it stop me from singing? Sadly, for the general public, no. But I'm really tickled to have these singing kids and I hope it takes them far. Perhaps not "American Idol" far, but far enough that they have this wonderful talent that sets them apart from the crowd, and perhaps entertains their own kids in the future - I have no doubt their lullabies will sound a lot sweeter to their kids' ears!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Girls' Night!!

I was faced with a most unusual situation this weekend. I had no kids and no husband in the house. What to do? I could have spent that valuable time repainting a bathroom or perhaps hand washing the blinds in the bathtub, but I hit upon an even better idea - have a Girls' Night! I quickly dashed out an evite before I changed my mind and spent Saturday cleaning the house, baking sinfully delicious Caramel-Chip Bars and chicken crescents, stockpiling the alcohol and arranging frosty cold beers in a large tub. Promptly at 7 p.m. my girls arrived, alcohol and food in hand! We had a rollicking good time, loads of alcohol was consumed, and we ended up displaying our varied talents at karaoke. The night finally wound down at 3 a.m. (yes, Tonya was the last to leave - I love her!), and at 3:45 I went to bed feeling like a naughty teenager. I don't think I stayed up that late even when I WAS a teenager. Who says 40 year old girls can't party? As the photos show, Tonya can belt it out with the best of them and yes, we did sing Captain and Tenille.

Jeff's grandpa

Jeff is visiting his grandpa in San Diego. They attended a Padres game last night and had a great time. Willie Mays threw out the first pitch (how cool is that?). The guy in the photo is NOT Willie Mays, but Jeff says he's a famous baseball player from the Negro League (these photos were from Jeff's cell phone). Vern (grandpa) turns 87 on Tuesday.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

No More Brace Face!

Hayley got her braces off on Thursday, just before her big end-of-the-year party. As you can see by the photo, she chose multicolored rubber bands for her last few weeks in braces. And in the other photo, she has her fabulous straight teeth. I'm pretty sure our orthodontist bought a boat with the proceeds from our daughter's orthodontia. Bon Voyage!

Hayley Cleans Up!

Thought everyone would enjoy this photo. Hayley was told to "clean up" for her upcoming party. Well, the bathroom looked great, except for this one little indiscretion. I did not even see this - Jeff was the one who made the discovery and took the photo! I especially enjoy the hat at the top of the stack of laundry. The best part is that it must have taken some effort to create this precarious stack of laundry/art. Effort that could have been spent carting it all to the laundry room? Perhaps, but who am I to criticize her creative endeavors??

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Fashion Follows Function!

Just thought everyone would enjoy seeing how creative I have been with my cast. Most people would be happy to just leave their cast as is from the doctor, or perhaps wrap it in a generic ace bandage. I scoff at their unimaginative minds! In an attempt to look charming for a recent supper club event, I hit upon the genius idea of dragging out all those silky scarves I own and never wear and repurposing them into stylish cast covers! A-ha! My black silk scarf provided an elegant cover, matching my black blouse perfectly. And yesterday, I decided a punch of fun was in order. Although the day was dreary, I put on a pop of red color with my t-shirt and accessorized with a cheery cherry scarf (I even borrowed Arlie's cherry necklace for matching effect). I tell you, I'm a fashion genius. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day Brewfest

Today is Father's Day and what better way to celebrate than attending the annual Brewfest in St. Edward's park? Anyone who knows Jeff knows he likes his beer, and so we joined our neighbors Jason and Amy and headed off with Abbie and Arlie in tow (the other kids were with their dad). For $15 we got a taster cup (plastic this year, not the usual glass - guess everything is getting cheaper!), and six tasting tokens. These allowed you to have a 4 oz. "taste" of various brews from all over the region. I tried three and like them in this order: ick, nasty, and ok. Needless to say, I handed my other tokens over to Jeff (and one to Arlie for the root beer garden, where she got a gross-tasting root beer that we dumped out in the grass). I'm not even sure what all Jeff tried, but there were definitely some weird combinations there. One guy came up to me and said "bacon beer - just smell it" so I did, and yep, it smelled like bacon bits. He said "it tastes just like it smells" and that went in the grass too. But some of the beers were actually good, or Jeff just enjoyed their effect (he's sleeping it off now!). The best part was it was SUNNY outside, which should not be such an anomoly on June 15th, but sadly, around here, we have not seen the sun in ages. So, I include some photos of our day. Happy Father's Day to all!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Yesterday I had surgery on my wrist to remove a "volar ganglion cyst". This was a rather unsightly bump on my wrist that had become increasingly bothersome. I thought it would be a simple procedure but it turned out to be a bit more than I bargained for. For one thing I had to go under general anesthesia for the first time. Me being me, that prompted me to worry about that 1% chance of "cardiac arrest or death". Jeff observed that I might have a "heightened sense of anxiety" surrounding surgery (ya think?). I knew, of course, that once I fell asleep, I wouldn't care if they cut my hand off, but it was the anticipation that was killing me (ok, and the fact that they wrote "NO" in permanent marker on my right arm, and "YES" on my left so as not to operate on the wrong appendage!). Clearly, everything turned out fine, as I am typing this one-handed and am alive and well. But I did not anticipate how hard it would be to do everything with my right hand (I'm left-handed!). Can't eat with my left hand because I can't bend my wrist. Can't write because while my fingers and thumb are free, the cast is too thick to grasp a pen. Can't wash the right side of my body well. I have to keep my arm elevated above my heart as much as possible (I slept surprisingly well with my arm up on three pillows!). And try putting gel in your hair with one hand!

We are hosting our end-of-season softball party at our house tonight, too! How crazy is that? To top it off, its raining so now I need to come up with some way to entertain 10 girls and their siblings indoors. In the meantime I have some Percocet to get me through!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Harrison jumps for joy!

Ok, so Harrison thought there weren't enough pictures of him on here, so I'm going to include his "jumping" photos from the first day I took pictures on my new camera.


This weekend, my niece Justine graduated from high school. As graduations go, this was your standard affair - the orchestra playing "Pomp and Circumstance" while the graduates streamed into the gym, the requisite speeches, the presentation of diplomas, and the hat toss. I was thinking, wow, we have to go through this FOUR times in the next several years (God-willing!) and send four kids off to college. And I'm worried about gas prices? Anyway, Justine was beautiful as always and it was fun to see the kids all excited (although their excitement, I'm sure, was mostly just for the all-night party at Silverwood afterward!).

After the graduation, Monica, Jeff and I went out to eat at Red Lobster and left Hannah and Maddison at home with pizza. It was nice to have an adult night out (and a few fruity drinks!).

Congratulations Justine!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


So, it's Tuesday. Nothing too exciting about that. I get to go be "recess lady" at the kids' school. Oh joy - better because it's RAINING here like crazy so that should make for a pleasant time enjoyed by all.

We watched two movies this weekend - I am Legend, which was SO stupid (some good special effects, but really lame storyline), and 27 Dresses, which was cute but so predictable (oh, which guy will she end up with?). Neither really worth two hours of my valuable time!

I am reading "Twilight" by Stephenie Meyer (weird she puts an "e" in there where most people put an "a"). Anyway, she's this Mormon housewife w/ three kids who says the idea for this book came to her in a dream. Now she's written three in the series, plus another "adult" book and her fourth series book comes out in August. These books are all the rage amongst the teen set here in the Seattle area, so I decided to find out what it's all about. I'm only on chapter 2 but so far the writing is just ok. After reading these books, Hayley said I should write a book. Yeah, tell me about it. That's the frustrating part - reading a book and saying "I could write this - or better!". But there are so many great authors out there, too. Amazing books the likes of which I could never imagine writing. And where to start anyway? I have so many stories to tell.

We have one more regular season baseball game for Harrison (tonight, which will probably be rained out!) and then playoffs this weekend (which I'm going to miss because I'll be in Idaho at Justine's graduation). For Arlie, we are already in playoffs, with our next game tomorrow. If we lose that one, I think we play one more and then we're done. I'm ready for it all to be over! But now Jeff's just started his adult co-ed recreational team, so that's a game every Monday night for the next 8 weeks or so.

Ok, I'm going to go drink my green tea now. I actually decided NOT to go to Starbucks this morning on my way back from an appt. but came home, ate my high-fiber cereal and now my green tea! And I worked out before 8 a.m. Whew. All this healthy shit really takes a lot out of you. I should have a cupcake to get over it.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend

Ok, it's been a while since I posted. Mainly because I wanted to include photos from my new camera and so in order to download the software, I had to get my computer a little "check-up" (Thanks, Jason!). So, we went to Arizona for Memorial Day weekend. We took an early morning flight on Saturday so ended up being tired and napping mid-day! The weather kind of sucked anyway, it was actually raining when we arrived! But we did go out to have Greek food for lunch and Italian food for dinner! Yum! Sunday we went to Lake Pleasant. It was an ok lake - not nearly as picturesque as lakes in WA because there's simply very little green - lots of dust, rocks and brown! The lake looked like a fun place but we didn't do much "recreating", instead eating lunch at the visitor's center and spending the rest of our time driving around and waiting around while my dad made connections (he's got himself a job there this summer!). Sunday night Kyle came back from Ohio and Jeff made dinner for everyone. Monday it was beautiful, but I woke up sick as a dog (food poisoning? stomach flu?) and spent the entire day in bed! Jeff, my mom, and dad spent the day getting ready for a BBQ that evening. Around 5 p.m. I dragged myself to the pool to make an appearance (looking, for all the world, I'm certain, like death warmed over). Food was definitely not on my agenda, which was too bad, because Jeff had cooked up a bunch of cedar plank salmon. Tuesday, since I had missed out on the sun and fun Monday, and it was our last day, we spent the whole day at the pool. We didn't exactly come back with gleaming tans, but we at least got to enjoy some Arizona sunshine.