Monday, June 18, 2007


On Saturday morning, what had begun as a joke became reality.

Hubby & I had joked that my mom, Grandma, could stay home with all three of the kids while my Dad, PaPa, took hubby and I out rummaging. Since we are all huge collectors, and dealers, this was supposed to be a joke --- but early Saturday morning, PaPa knocked on the door and said the bus was leaving. So we tumbled out of bed and stumbled into his van and headed off.

Derek and I found a few things, including (yet another) crate of 78's. No working player yet, but we're still looking. My dad spent a total of $1.

We returned, had lunch and then the two men started on sawing down trees, trimming dead branches etc. Allie went to a movie with one of her Wisconsin friends, so Grandma and I filled a pool with water and sent the liddle kiddles out to play in it.

Destiny, ever prudish, started with a t-shirt over her two-piece suit. (She finally agreed that a one-piece would be a good idea -- even worth spending her birthday money on! Reality point number two.)

Eventually she got brave enough to take off the shirt she was hiding in. Then she wanted more water in the pool. We warned her that it would be very, very cold, but she (and Hunter) insisted that's what they wanted.

Des stood in it, but that's it. Hunter submerged himself, dipped his head etc and got blue lips for his actions.

After a bit I got out the cellphone camera and snapped some pics. Do you have any idea how hard it is to take photos of a 7 year old boy?! Very.

Sure, he'll ham and pose -- but stand still and smile nicely? No way!

Eventually I had to order him to stand nice. (Poor Des then got his cold body pressed against her -- Brr!)

During their play, I noticed unusual bruising on Hunter's side. Because of the abuse, I was terrified. "It has begun," I thought with tears in my eyes and fear in my throat. It turns out the what I thought was bruising from fingers (finger tips and long pulling marks), wasn't. Hunter was bruised with a bike wheel and the strange "finger marks" matched up with his ribs. But for quite some time I was convinced of the worst. I couldn't just take Hunter's word at first because he's lied &/or refused to talk about his dad's actions before. This is the sort of thing that you live with in families with such a history. You can be carrying along as usual, but then you are stopped cold with the what-ifs and fears. Reality point number three.

Birthdays: Hope Floats & Root Beer Floats

Destiny turned 11 (Happy Blogged Birthday, Destiny!), and we had our usual root beer floats. With this many birthdays in a row, we don't make cakes for each special day. (We'd be lucky to finish one before the next one needed to be baked.) So we do root beer floats. Equally tasty and special, especially for summer babies.

We had a relatively normal day, 'cept for the floats and a visit from Grandma Kathy and Grandpa Dave.

Destiny, like all kids, was eager for presents, but she knew she'd have to wait for Friday night when we travel to Wisconsin for the party there -- and for our party at the house on the 30th (for the North Dakota contingent). Both of these are cake events.

On Friday, after a 10 hour drive, we picked-up Hunter and went to my sister's to celebrate all three of the kids' birthdays, along with anniversaries, and Father's Day. My sister ordered a cake with "Happy Birthday, Anniversary and Father's Day" on it. All that was missing was the 4th of July. ;)

It was wonderful -- as it always is. My sister and her husband are wonderful entertainers in their home. They have a huge house that our kids always talk about on the way home. :sigh: We ate and ate and then opened presents and had cake. Then back to my parent's house to spend the night... From there it got interesting...

Thursday, June 14, 2007

13 Ways To Celebrate Summer Reading As A Family

Thirteen Things about Summer Reading As A Family

1) Book recycling. Take your used books and donate them to your local library' 'friends' for a fund raiser, and be sue to check out books on too -- letting the kids know the valuable services that libraries provide.

2) Book Cycling. Take books along on your next bike ride. Bike further than you usually do, stop under a tree and read. Refreshed, head back home again.

3) Lead Read and they will follow. Take a book along outside when you supervise the kids with the sprinkler etc. Let them see you reading.

4) Get, and display, Library Punk Stickers.

5) Book recycling plan B. Have your own used book sale (or rummage sale) as a family, then take your money and go buy books at the rummage sales of others. Discuss how a book is only not worth anything if it's never read.

6) Lead Read and they will follow part two: Participate in summer reading programs -- parents match the children in their reading, book for book.

7) Stay up late: Each family member who can read takes turns reading aloud to the rest of the family. Make sure to make time for the family to discuss the story with, questions such as "What do you think happens next?" and "What's your favorite part so far?"

8) Use sibling rivalry to your benefit: Let the child who has done their chores first, etc. be the one to pick the book you read out loud together as a family.

9) Siesta for the soul. Make the hour after lunch reading time. (No arguments on waiting for the dip in pool with this plan, cuz they are with the program. *wink*)

10) Stay up late -- and educate. Read aloud to your children from works they wouldn't/couldn't read themselves. (We did this last summer with Canterbury Tales, and the kids really liked it.) Be sure to stop as need to explain words etc. they might not understand.

11) Actually take your tree, flower, bird or other field identification guide out with you on your next walk or outing. Help the kids learn to use guides for identification. (If you don't have one, check rummage sales -- I'm always finding them for less than $1.)

12) Include your children's friends in your trips to the library.

13) Popsicles and Puppets. Give the kids a frozen treat while parents use puppets read stories. Invite the neighborhood kids too.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
(leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Thursday Thirteen (#11) : Disneyland!
Thursday Thirteen: June 13
Keeping Riley Busy This Summer
Thursday Thirteen...Frog Edition
Thursday Thirteen: Hell In Handbags
Thirteen pictures I hope will make you smile.
Thursday Thirteen--in lieu

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Another Birthday

My son, Hunter, turned 7 today.

I called him, and surprisingly was able to reach him (it never seems to occur to these people to have him call me on Mother's Day or any other events which would seem to warrant a phone call, let alone return a call when I leave a message).

It hurts not to be with him, especially today. But he sounded fine.

So "Happy Birthday, baby. We all love you!"

Thift Shop Fun

Today at a thrift store we discovered "Derick's Beanie Pole."

Of course my Derek (my husband) had to pose with it.

When I first met my husband, he swore his beanie pole would never be on the Internet -- I changed that *wink*

Monday, June 04, 2007

I Live Where Water Catches On Fire

You know I often mock where I live (most recent example)... But come on, when the water is flammable, well, even hubby has to mock it!

Weensy Pup

Rare photos of Ween, who, as mentioned before, is afraid of the camera. He honestly is afraid of them. Worse than the vacuum. It's like the magic box steals his soul...

The second Destiny left her blankie and pillows, Ween decided it was finders keepers and took her spot.

He was suspicious of the cell phone -- he's smart enough to know that something fishy's going on... But he hasn't quite figured out when it's a dangerous camera and when it's a non-threatening phone.

Ween must be almost 10 years old by now. Finally he can be called an old dog instead of folks just thinking he is because of his appearance as the grizzled old grandpa.