Friday, July 25, 2008

Lucky Charms Prize


This morning, when I was pouring Kaden's cereal, I spotted this huge earwig inside the container...EWWWW! Now, my question is, how did he get there? I bought the box of Lucky Charms at the store only the day before and while unloading groceries at home, I opened the box, took the unopened bag out and dumped it directly into this empty airtight cereal container...so you tell me: Just how good is quality control at the cereal plant? And could this bug have been living alive inside the sealed cereal bag? That's the only way I can think that he could have gotten into my cereal.

Mommy & Me



This week's Mommy & Me was up at Portland's International Rose Test Garden. Just another beautiful place to visit in Portland. It's just breathtaking. There are hundreds of different varieties of roses, among other beautiful garden areas. Kaden had a great time, he got soaked playing in the fountain. And Versii would have had a great time if I would have only given him a little more freedom. As soon as I let him out of the stroller, he was off to the flower beds, with the fresh soil. Ahhh...dirt, sweet dirt!

















Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The New House

As some of you know, Joshua and I are living with my parents while Joshua is in school, to cut down on expenses. Right now we are all living in a house that they bought on a large lot they have now divided into two lots. We're all currently living in the front house while they build a new house on the back flag lot. The new house should be done within the next few months.

What's funny is, the house plan Mom and Dad picked says, "Great for Empty Nesters." Which they are, or were, until they so graciously allowed us to move in with them. Thanks Mom and Dad!

Anyway, Mom picked a house plan where the master bedroom is on the main floor, so if she ever can't go up stairs then there wouldn't be any reason she would have to. Josh and I will have the upstairs. It will be so nice to have a bathroom on the same level as our bedroom.
Right now, the closest bathroom is downstairs. And I have to go down two flights of stairs, to the basement, to do our laundry. In the new house, it will be reduced to only one. So I'm excited. Not that going up and down stairs isn't good for me.
Here is a picture of the detached garage Dad added. This is really his shop/storage area. It's almost finished. I think they're waiting on the vent to arrive.
And below is a picture of the progress on the house. They finished up the foundation yesterday. Today they'll be working on the floor joists and whatever else goes along with that. Dad's a general contractor, for those of you who didn't know. And he's never been happy in a house that he didn't build, or remodel. If my count is right, this new house will be the 10th house Mom and Dad have lived in since they've been married. Wait, make that the 13th, I just remember another three.








On a side note: For those of you thinking about building a house in Multnomah county, or just curious... I bet you can't guess how much the building permit cost on this house???


Saturday, July 19, 2008

The Love for Three Oranges

Speaking of memories...I was thinking today about an Opera I saw years ago. The Love for Three Oranges

Here's the description I found online, since this describes it better than I can:

In Brief: Take a prince who cannot laugh, a witch who curses him with a fatal passion for not one but three oranges, a double-dealing Prime Minister, a devil with magic bellows, a giant rat and a cook with a lethal ladle; place the whole thing in a fairy-tale kingdom, set it to Prokofiev's sly, scintillating music and you have one of opera's most surreal comic masterpieces, The Love for Three Oranges.

I can't seem to find that this Opera is currently being performed anywhere, but if you ever hear about it, you should definitely go. --This is no ordinary Opera. It was presented as a Scratch & Sniff opera. When we arrived at the opera house, we were given scratch & sniff cards with our programs. And throughout the performance, someone on stage would hold up a card to let the audience know to scratch a certain number on the card. For example: the devil with magic bellows would blow smoke out of his hind end and at that moment, the audience would all be scratching their cards...then the whole auditorium smelled like someone just farted. It was crazy! As you can imagine if hundreds of people are all scratching the cards at the same time, the smell really comes to life. Of course, there was a scratchy for an orange smell too, but those are the only 2 smells I still remember. Anyway, it was definitely one of the best times I ever had at the Opera.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Sharing One Of Life's Necessities



Josh will probably make fun of me for sharing this, but I'm going to do it anyway. The other day I was thinking about all the products that I just couldn't live without and Ivory soap would be one of them.

I have come across a few who know the secret cleaning power of Ivory, but when you find a product that's great, I think it should be shared.

Plain Ivory bar soap is the best for getting out tough stains. It works better than Shout, or any of those pre-treatment things. I clean a lot of things with this stuff. For those of you who are Moms, this soap will almost always even remove those awful yellow baby poop stains from clothes. Ivory is great for grease spots on clothes too. I like to use it, with a toothbrush, to clean dirty shoes too. (Yes, I'm a little neurotic when I start cleaning.) I can basically get almost any stain out with Ivory. Just a tip of how I use it -- Directions according to Joy: Lightly wet the fabric and then rub the bar directly on the stain. I often have to use my fingernails to scrub it out too. Rinse and repeat. Just yesterday, there was some sort of brown stain all across the front of a shirt I got out of the dryer, and I was able to get it out. ---Anyway, if your stain doesn't come out using this, I'd say it's permanent.

Ha Ha...while I at it, I'll share my other cleaning product must-haves:
1. Ivory Bar soap's #1, but you just read that
2. Soft Scrub with Bleach - LOVE IT! It can clean almost anything.
3. Windex
4. Old toothbrush for detail scrubbing
5. Sponge with one side smooth and one side rough.
6. Rubber Gloves, I don't like to touch the dirt!

Just so you know, I don't love to clean, but when I get in the mood to clean...I sort of go crazy into detail. I do suffer from a little OCD complex. LOL

Memories...

I saw this on my friend Trenya's blog.

Trenya, I just started reading your blog, and I'll play along. Although, I don't know how many people read my blog either, so we'll see what we get. Here's how you play:

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you. If you don't want to play on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, I'll leave my memory of you in my comments. Let the memories begin!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Idol Chatter

Ha Ha...I got that title from the Oregonian article about the American Idol Concert. Grandma really started the whole American Idol craze this year. I watched American Idol the first season and then I sometimes like to watch the outtakes of the ones who didn't make it. But I don't usually watch the competitions. Mom has watched a few of the seasons. Neither of us would have watched this year, but Grandma told Mom that one of the contestants was from her old high school, Murray High, and he was LDS (David Archuleta). Also, Brooke White is LDS. So she started watching. Then she got me watching and 450+ votes later (98% for Archuleta, since 2% of the votes mysteriously went to David Cook, although we dialed the line for Archuleta off of redial - We remain convinced that the votes are rigged.)...here we are going to the American Idol Concert. And laugh if you want, but we had a great time. The thing about an American Idol Concert is that the performances are so diverse. You really get a great variety. My new favorite Idol would have to be Michael Johns. I love a guy with an acent...he austrailian, he's attractive and he's a great singer. (Don't worry, I still love my husband best, but Michael is fun to watch.) Kristy Lee Cook was surprisely one of the best performers of the night. She had a lot of exuberance on stage, although she's a country singer, she was very entertaining. Brooke White is just super talented, she plays piano and guitar. David Archuleta plays piano too and has an amazing voice and then there's David Cook who is the American Idol and he was good too. He's relatively attractive, but just not my favorite. Anyway, if you actually read all this. Check out the slide show...no American Idol concert is complete without a dancing Poptart. Then there was the Guitar Hero faceoff during the intermission...And you don't want to miss the photo of the girl wearing the shirt that says, "Future Mrs. Archuleta." The were a lot of home-made signs to that effect too. So silly! One Mom even told us, her girls were expecting a proposal tonight. Now that's idol craziness! ---All in all, we had a really great time. But if I have trouble hearing you from now on, it may be because of the hearing loss I suffered during the concert. The bass was crazy loud. It rung in your ears...although it wasn't as bad during the slower songs. After the show closed, everything just sounded muffled. ---Thanks Joshua for watching the boys while I went out! And thanks Mom for sharing this with me!

video

Above: Just a clip of David Archuleta, singing one of my new favorite songs.

Below: This clip is of the audiance going wild over David Cook. The sound just can't be duplicated on a camera...but I think you get the point.

video

Friday, July 11, 2008

I Want To Be A Missionary Now

video

The other day, I heard Kaden singing this primary song. While he played with his toys, I would hear him humming it and then I would hear him singing it. Normally during the Primary Programs he just stands there, with a smile, but doesn't sing. The last time we asked him why he wasn't singing...and his answer was, "I don't know the songs." But now I know better. It just go to show that even if the kids don't participate, it doesn't mean the information isn't getting through. I love to hear him singing.

Versii's new
fun thing to
do...riding in
and pushing
the laundry
basket...or
just loading
and unloading
the clothes.
Mostly unloading
them, one at
a time. He's
such a little
mess maker.

How does your garden grow?

I'm expanding our small garden. All we had before were Kaden's sunflowers, that he planted at Kindergarten round-up, back in May. I've never really tried gardening before and I'm not very good at keeping plants alive. But so far, these sunflowers have survived. They're over 15 inches tall. Today I have planted Blue Bellflowers and Mixed Colored Asters. After planting them outside and trying desperately for Versii not to disturb them, I'm thinking it may have been a better idea to start them indoors...then transplant them when they grow bigger. Too late for that idea, I suppose. With the amount of times Versii started digging in the garden, it will be a wonder if the garden has any symmetry when it's matured. At any rate, both seed packages say "Guarenteed to Grow" so let's hope that's true.
The new seeds planted in loving memory of Mom's friend Judy.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Let the Sun Shine

I love the sun, but when the temperature gets over 75 or 80 degrees, it just too hot for comfort. Being born in Alaska, I've never enjoyed really hot weather. And now that it's been so hot here in Portland, it's even less enjoyable, since we had no air conditioning. I couldn't even go inside to avoid the suffering heat...that is until yesterday. We finally got air conditioning! Hurray, for the heat has met it's match! Our house felt a little like a refrigerator. It was great to feel the cool air coming out of the vents. I'm so happy. Don't worry, I still sympathise with those of you who have to suffer these next fews days without it. You're welcome to hang out with me.

TAGGING? - Defined as a form of "chain" email via Blog

My sister's, used to be best friend, as she calls her (ha ha) tagged her. As if I even really understand what that means. I suppose that I should oblige her and do it too.

You have to list 3 joys, 3 fears, 3 goals, 3 current obsessions, 3 random surprising facts about yourself and then tag 5 people that have to complete this too.

Joys:
1. Watching my husband play his music. (I'm honored that I finally have my own song.)
2. Watching my boys learn new things.
3. And MUSIC. Just music, all sorts. Music is amazing, how it can change your mood or bring back memories. I couldn't live life without it.

Fears:
1. Being a bad mom (same as my sister Julie, among others, but I'll make this my #1)
2. My kids being badly hurt
3. ??? I'm sure I have a lot more, but I can't think of any right now.

Goals: (Julie, you didn't reply to this one.)
1. I want to complete the digital scrapbooks I'm trying to make for the boys.
2. I want to transfer all our digital photos online.
3. Become "Super Mom" (Ha Ha)...just kidding. I know that's not possible. I'm trying to teach Kaden math. Since he's already mostly mastered reading.

Current obsessions:
1. Blogging...ever since I started, I'm become obsessed. (As Josh would say.) I check it out or add to it every day. I love to read comments and know I have friends. Plus it's a great way to start getting to know someone.
2. Keeping my house clean. Not only do you have the normal chores, but having kids, it seems like the cleaning never ends.
3. Staying in shape. Now that I can fit into my "skinny jeans," I want to keep it that way.

Random surprising facts about me:
1. I must have chocolate on a daily basis to stay sane. Although I don't know how random that is, since those of you who really know me already know this.
2. I always buy a candy bar for myself when I go grocery shopping alone. And then I eat it on the way home. Then I usually hide the wrapper, so no one questions where their candy is. lol
3. Ever since I figured out what Suduko was all about, I became obsessed. I used to sit and do Suduko puzzles whenever I could. And since Josh thought I did it so much, when he would come into the room and ask what I am up to, I would have it stashed under a book and say, "Nothing..." - But he always knew better.

Who I'm Tagging: (This is funny, because I have to think of who actually reads my blog): I guess since I am still getting to know so of my new readers, it would be fun to see your responses. By the way, you're not obligated to do this either, but you can if you want.
1. Nicole
2. Lindsey
3. Nachelle
4. Rosie
5. Kate

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A Glimpse of Fear Factor

Tonight I got a glimpse of what a Fear Factor contestant must have felt like at the time that they had to eat some "rare delicacy" as it was called. I was eating grapes out of a bowl on our kitchen counter, when I put a grape in my mouth that had a little piece of the stem on it. Or so I thought. It tasted bitter and I stuck my finger in my mouth to pull it out and on my finger was an ant. YUCK!!! YUCK!!! YUCK!!! ---Needless to say, that was the end of my grape eating. It's a good thing that I never went on Fear Factor, because I would have puked on camera if I had to eat any kind of bug or raw animal part!

On a side note: It looks like I came away with only 5 mosquito bites from 4th of July, while Versii got 2. Bugs just love me!

Friday, July 4, 2008

HAPPY 4th OF JULY!

Kaden + sparklers = scared and happy.


Just the way it should be, I think, wouldn't want him getting to comfortable holding a stick on fire in his hand.


Don't worry, I didn't give the baby any lit sparklers, he just got to hold them in their pre-fire status.

Kaden took this picture of Versii and I. He just loves to use the camera.

***************


I just love to see fireworks. My pictures aren't award-winning, but they give you a good idea of the fireworks we enjoyed. The crazy looking ones, the ones with the streaks of light, were taken using the "fireworks" setting on my camera. I just thought they looked neat.



We had a very relaxing 4th. No one in the house had to work so we watched a few movies. The Golden Compass and Fool's Gold. I'm no movie critic, but I will say that we really weren't that impressed with the Golden Compass. The film work was cool, but it just wasn't as great as it seemed like it would be. Josh and Kaden were bored with it. Kaden really liked The Cronicles of Narnia, so I thought for sure he would like this one, but he left shortly after it started to go play in his room. Dad was so bored that he fell asleep. (HaHa, he falls asleep a lot when he's bored, or should I say he "rest his eyes" a lot.) As for Fool's Gold, I thought is was a good movie, although there is a scene were good 'ol Matt gets flashed by a girl and it was totally unnecessary and some language that need not be present. And this flick is rated PG-13...what happened to the days when boobs were only seen in the R rated films? Anyway, in between the movies, we barbecued. We had really yummy steaks. And in the evening, Josh and Kaden ran out to buy some fireworks. We just weren't sure we wanted to go out and join the masses for any of the big shows this year. So, we just stayed home, and had our own fireworks show in the backyard. This is Versii's 2nd 4th of July, but last year he was such a new baby he just fell asleep, and this year, he was tired and scared. He ended up going inside to watch fireworks from the window, with Grandma. He didn't mind watching the lights, but the sound really bugged him. Speaking of bugs, why is it that the mosquitoes only like me? I swear I have been bit several times tonight. I'll be able to assess the full damage tomorrow. All in all, we had a great day! How about you?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Big Shoes to Fill

Yesterday morning Kaden had put on Grandpa's boots and was marching around the house, with Versii trailing in the distance, arms out saying, "Uhhhh, Uhhhh." He just wanted to do it too. Although the difference is, Versii can't walk in them...but he sure does look cute. He'd stand there for a minute, try to move, loose his footing and want to do it all over again. I think he sort of reminds me of Puss In Boots, from Shrek.