Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Just plain NOT.  That is how I am feeling today.  I do NOT have any energy.  I have NOT done much today.  I am NOT ready for my mom to come in two days. I canNOT take the meds that they have given me for pain...makes me too sick.  I do NOT really seem to care about all of these NOTs.

My poor mom is going to come in two days and see my messy house.  Right now there is not even furniture in the room she is suppose to be sleeping in.  The bathroom she is suppose to use is in chaos right now.  Matt has all the painting stuff in there....not sure how I am going to be able to get the tub clean enough.  Once we get the furniture in, I still have to get the bed made (after washing the sheets and blankets) and all the decor up.  At least I know where everything is going to go.

Maybe I should wrap presents .... I suppose I should get up to do that now.  I really have no energy to do that either.  I think I will just take a sleeping pill and go to sleep.  Maybe I will get up early and do some stuff. Ha Ha Ha.  Me up early?  I am going to have to make myself do that because I am going to let myself be consumed by self pity tonight.  Matt is out doing wrestling and the boys are sleeping.  Time to eat chocolate and go to bed.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Explain to Me

Quick background...I have Ehlers-danlos.  It is a collagen disorder that causes massive joint issues.  The ligaments do not repair themselves.  Most people do things everyday using their extremities with no problem...ligaments are stretched and get repaired on a daily basis.  Me, I use the ligaments and they never repair and if they do, it is at an extremely slow rate.  I spent years pulling and stretching them while I was in the service and now I am paying the price.  I have to be extremely careful how I move my body.  I have dislocate my shoulder just picking up my kids.  Now it is so bad, that I dislocated it today just picking up bags of groceries to bring into the house.  My muscles are what really keep my body together. I take some sort of pain medication daily (mostly at night) to combat the pain. I have talked to all of my doctors and we have decided that because I will always have pain and it will get worse as life goes, we are trying all of the low dose non-narcotic drugs first.  Having said all of that.......

I went to see a new primary care doctor about 6 weeks ago.  We discussed my pain meds.  I was taking tramadol, which was not working very well.  It kinda working on the pain, but the side effects were miserable.  I was having massive hot flashes and insomnia.  I was putting up with the side effects to have some pain relief.  The doctor changed my pain med, hoping we could have some relief without the side effects.  Mind you, I had to explain my condition to the doc.  She had never even heard of it.  She recommended that I stop taking tramadol and start taking baclofen.  Well....I decided I would try it, even though I was leery about it.  Baclofen is a muscle relaxer.  Does it make sense to any of you for me to take a muscle relaxer when my muscles are what keep my body together?  Like I said, I thought I would try it.  I was taking it just at night when I was having a hard day.  I did alright then.  It actually helped a bit, kinda made sense for my body to relax while I was sleeping.

Today, however, I changed that routine.  I went to Walmart and picked up a present for the kids from my brother.  It was really heavy and awkward.  I came home and decided to take one of those muscle relaxers to help with the pain in my shoulder.  I laid down and tried to nap.  I did alright until I tried to roll over.  Out popped my shoulder again, then my hip and knee.  Pain sucks.  It makes total sense that this would happen.  If muscles are what are keeping me together....it would make sense that if you relax the muscles, the joints will not stay in place properly.  Duh...my fault for saying I would try these.  I already know that I have to take charge of my medical status.  Why did I let her tell me to do this?

I think I shall consult with my family pharmacist (Amy) to see what she might recommend.  I know that it will be a bit of trial and error, but I will not let them give me another muscle relaxer.

I am thankful to God everyday just to be alive and spend time with my fabulous family.

I took one of those

Friday, December 3, 2010


To those of you who read my blog.  I would like to add a disclaimer.  I post here because this is where I get to write my thoughts and feelings.  As I post, I make sure not to use names.  Having said that....I do post about things that are currently happening in my life.  So, as with any post it is my point of view on what is going on and what is happening around me.  I am sure that others have a different view.  Most intelligent people would understand that this is my point of view and others may look at the same situation differently.

For most of you this is not necessary. But to those of you who have a problem with what I write, please keep this disclaimer in mind as you read.  Otherwise, if you do not like what I have written....DO NOT READ IT.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

So Angry

There are very few times that I have been as angry as I am now.

This is a short background and a little cryptic.  I just cannot keep my anger to myself and I am sorry if those of you who do not know already think this might be too much information.  I will try to handle it discretely.

While I was in the service, I was sent TDY to Korea for 2 weeks.  While I was there, there was an "indecent."  I reported it and followed all the right protocol.  The military handled it very badly all the way around.  It was awful, not only what happened, but the following aftermath as well.

I filed a claim with the Veteran's Affairs Administration for compensation.  I sent them my statement and those of others.  It is there responsibility to get all the military documentation.  I filed this claim in January.  I just got a letter in the mail stating that they cannot obtain the ER report from Korea.  They wanted me to send them my copy.  Really?  Who would be int their right mind to think about asking for a copy of the report?  I am totally dumbfounded.  I am the one who was assaulted and I am responsible for taking care of everything.  I know it is the military, but really?  I am at a complete lose and I shouldn't be.  It is not like the military has not screwed me over in the past.  They gave me some of my best memories and some of my worst.

I am so angry that I am almost at a loss for words.  Uh is about all I can say.

I am really hoping that there is enough other information available and statements from friends and family that they believe me.  I am so tired of people not believing that this happened.  At the time it was a total nightmare. They actually tried to court martial me and now, they are about to say it never happened.



My poor body is so tired.   I just want to got to sleep.  I went to bed early last night, but rolled around not actually sleeping.  I worked around the house a little this morning and they laid down to take a nap.  I did not sleep during nap time.  I rolled around and rolled around again.  I was on the couch for almost 2 hours.   I seem to have to go to the bathroom every time I rolled over.  I think it must be something with some of my medications.  I know that it is a side effect of one of them, but I cannot do this.  It is no wonder I have been having headaches.  The fluid I am putting in my body is not staying there.  I am afraid to drink more....I may never get out of the bathroom then.

Done whining.  My little man Ben is a riot.  We were going to pick Max up from school yesterday and on the way he was singing....."If your happy in your nose, clap your hands.  If your happy in your nose, clap your hands."   It was awesome.

This morning Max was talking about a foot.  I told him that a foot was 12 inches long.  He did not get it when he measured his foot and it was not 12 inches.

Despite all the hardships in my life and all the aches and pains, my family does lift me up.  They are wonderful.

Keep your fingers crossed I might sleep tonight.  We have swim lessons at 6, hopefully the boys will be ready to go to bed when we get home.  That means I will have a few minutes to get a few more things cleaned up and then I can go to bed early.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


I am sitting here tonight feeling a bit blah.  It has been a long day  I have to say that nothing has really happened. i had a hard time falling asleep last night, so it was after 1 before that happened.  Then the smoke detector battery died around 5.  So, I have been up since then.  The boys have been good.  Max went to school all day and Ben went this morning.

My body is reacting to all the work I did earlier this week.  Sucks when your body cannot keep up with your ambition.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Energy Lost

I got through most of the kitchen today.  It is nice to have counter tops again.  The new toaster I got from my in-laws for Christmas is now out for use. I cleaned out the mess in the dining room too.

I tried really hard to keep going, but my energy wained as the day went on.  I wanted to do so much more.  I really want to scrub it all down, but that is just not happening.  I, also, now have a pile of things that need to go downstairs and get put away once that is done.

Another day down and more things finished.  Not as much as I wanted, but there is more done.  I will keep going day by day and get more things.  The things I finished yesterday still look good tonight.  The boys picked up the toys they have up here.  It is nice to relax in an almost spotless house.

Monday, November 29, 2010

burst of energy

When we woke up this morning it was bitter cold and there was a light sprinkling of snow on the ground.  Max had a fever, snotty nose and a cough.  Ben just had the snotty nose and cough.  I decided that it was best if we all stayed in and stayed warm.

Since we were stuck in the house while a blistering wind blew outside, we decided to make it look a little like Christmas.  Matt went out of town for work this morning, but we put the tree up anyway.  We had to clean and clean (pick up toys mostly) to make room for the tree.  It took me about 1 1/2 hours to get it up and all the branches pulled out right.  Then it was time to get the ornaments out for the boys to put up.  They were so excited, I had to keep reminding them to wait for me to give the ornament to them.  After all the ornaments were up (minus the ones we saved for Daddy to put on the tree) it took me a good 20 minutes to move them around so they were not all on the bottom of the tree.  LOL.

Since we have been working so hard to get the basement finished, I have had to do some scrapbooking upstairs.  It took me a long time to get that all cleaned up.  Then is was onto the rest of the mess.  I left the house looking like a hurricane had come through when we left.  My laundry room is right in the hallway as you come into the house.  As much as I like having the washer upstairs, it is a pain in the butt.  The laundry was finished before we left last week, but piled up before it could get put away.  After finally getting that put away, I managed to get the boys to get all the toys picked up and then vacuum.  The hallway (which is really part of the living area) and the living room, Ben's room and Max.s rooms are all cleaned up.  Presentable in a Martha Stewart kinda way.  Makes me happy, but very tired.

I did get a burst of energy to complete all of this today, but now I am paying for it.  My right shoulder (the bad one) feels like it is on fire.  I am sure that more than once today, I pulled on it hard enough to dislocate it.  Fingers and wrists are not doing so well either, but I felt the need to write despite the pain.  Both hips are painful to, but it is time to play cars with the boys.  I have got to learn how to live with the pain and keep it managed.  Right now all I want to do is sit here and cry.  After a short time playing with the kids, I will have to make dinner.  Thank goodness we ordered Chinese last night and we have enough for dinner tonight.  No cooking required.

Tomorrow it is onto the kitchen that looks like it exploded.  Then the dining room that contains all the elements which were required to complete the blanket for Maggie.  Again, the craft room in the basement is not ready for me, so I took over the dining room to work.  Really need to get that done so we can eat at the table in there and not in front of the TV in the living room.

I know it is not the beginning of the year yet, but I am making my resolution now.  I would like to start living my life more like a Martha Stewart magazine.  I know that it will take daily up keep after I get to that point.  It is hard for me to do things each day, but maybe after it becomes a routine and my body gets some muscle memory it will be easier.  Today the challenge is to make sure this room stays the way it is until tomorrow and then the next day and the next.  Onto the kitchen tomorrow.  I have to clean, but also do some rearranging.  My mother-in-law bought a toaster oven for me and I need to find a place for it. (Thanks Rita, it is perfect.)

Wish me luck and great sleep tonight.  I will need another burst of energy to get through tomorrow.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Feel Crappy

Quick background....we paid a contractor a lot of money to finish our basement.  Well, to do the finishing things.  Matt actually did all the framing, drywall and electrical.  The guy did a horrid job.  The trim was not made into corners...it was sanded to be round.  None of the trim from room to room matched.  The paint colors did not match.  There were still space around all the outlets.  The closet doors still stick and not all of them have handles None of the closet shelves were hung either.  We were just so frustrated at the crappy job that he was doing and the amount of time it was taking that we just wanted him out.

So, with my parents coming in two weeks.  We want to have it all finished.  It has been almost done for almost 3 years now.  Today I went down with Matt to help.  We started with my craft room because all of my craft stuff was in the big room.  So we had to start somewhere.  I painted around the window and tried to roll the paint.  It was a matter of minutes before my bod started to give out.  My shoulder popped out of joint after the first three strokes.  Really??  Matt finished the room while I wandered around.  Then it was time to put all the stuff back.  I would work for 4 or 5 minutes and then have to sit down because everything hurt.  Now Matt is working his butt off downstairs to get things done.  He is leaving for a week and I am not sure what I am going to do.   My craft room is finished, but needs a small space patched before the official light fixtures are hung up.  I will be putting all the crap back where it belongs this week.  He should be finished with all the painting and such in the guest bedroom tonight.  I just need to figure out what is going on with several of the outlets in there.  I know that I cannot move the bed by myself.  (Shoot, I can barely paint one wall: forget moving a bed.)  I can try to move all of the lighter things in so when he comes home all he has to do for that room is help me move the bed in.  We could be finished for awhile then, but we still need to fix all the little things in Matt's office and the playroom.  I am dying to get the playroom finished.  The boys really want their toys back, which are located in boxes in the garage until this is finished (poor kids).

I am feeling just all around crappy.  I am the one who hired the contractor so Matt would not have to worry about finishing the basement.  It was totally my idea and I did it without him knowing I hired the guy.  Then for me to punk out because I hurt so badly, I just feel like I should take the brunt of the blame for this mess up.  Now, Matt is paying the price for me.  Damn.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Getting Ready

It is the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and we are all getting ready for the big day.  It is time to pack and get ready to travel to spend time with family.  The boys are dying to get in the car and go.  No matter how much we all want to do that, Matt has to work until sometime tomorrow. (There is no calling in sick when you are an independent contractor.)

I am thankful that we are going to my Mother-In-Laws for the holiday.  She does such a great job with all the food.  I like it because I can help, but not get as stressed out as I would if I was in charge of the whole meal.  I am hoping that she does not feel the stress I would because she has it all down after doing it so many times.  Not to mention that now she has 3 daughter-in-laws as helpers.  Not sure if that many women will make it easier or more work...LOL.

It is going to wonderful to spend time with the family.  It is very rare for military families to be lucky enough to have everyone in one place.   This is the second year that we are so blessed.  Jon and Amy (Ellie and Maggie too), and Mitch and Nicole will all be able to come home to Granna's this year.  Last year we were all able to go to Clovis to Jon and Amy's.  But, this year will be wonderful for Rita.  She is going to have all her boys, their wives and the grandkids under her roof all at the same time.  Currently there are 4 grandkids with one more on the way.  I bet that Rita could not have imagined all of the additions she would have to her family.

It is time to reflect and be thankful for what we have.  I have to say that it is kinda sad to me in a way.  While I have not been really great about it, shouldn't we be thankful everyday for the blessings in our lives?  It is nice to have a special day to get together with family, enjoy the company and good food, but what is Thanksgiving really about?  Being thankful?  Everyone talks a big game and is so thankful for all the truly great things they have in their lives.  Funny thing, those wonderful blessings are in their lives everyday.  Shouldn't we take a minute out of each day to be thankful.  So, it is not New Year Day yet, but I am going to start my resolution today.  I am going to wake up each morning, take 2 minutes to think about all the blessings I have in my life and thank God for them.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.....try to be thankful everyday, not just one day a year.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Damn the System

I am so terrified of the educational system we have to put our children into these days. 

I volunteered at Max's kindergarten class today.  I was really excited to go and help out.  The kids have been working on 100 sight words for the last 6 weeks or so.  Ms. Marsh has been going over them in class with the kids.  She, also, sent all the word home on cards for the parents to use to work with their children.  I was so excited to go and help.  

Turns out that I was not so happy when I left.  Max and one other child were amazing.  Max knew all of them and the other kid knew 98 of them.  I was so thrilled to see that...those were the first two kids I tested.  After that it was all down hill.  One other student knew about 30 of the words.....the rest were less than 10.  There is one girl who only knew the word "a."  No, REALLY.  I know that Max's teacher has been doing the words in class but they are just not getting it.   I am sure that some of the parents are not helping at home. 

I cannot blame the teacher for what is going on in the class.  It is really hard to teach reading when some of the students cannot even recognize all the letters.  There is such a vast difference between the levels in the class.  I know all about differentiated teaching.  I get it.  I know that teachers are suppose to teach to all the kids...figure out different lessons for different levels.  I can understand that and it is a good theory.  It works if the students are a bit closer in ability.  There is no way to overcome the vast expanse between not knowing all the letters and reading at a 1st grade level.  

I went on the offensive for my child today.  I want him to be challenged at his level.  I knew that he was advanced and doing well in reading, but now I am afraid that he is way above and beyond.  He is so far ahead of all but one other student in his class.  I have been working with his teacher trying to get him into 1st grade reading groups, but found out tonight that the 1st grade teachers do not want to move students around for reading.  They are not willing to take Max for reading.  Max's teacher is new to the district this year and is finding out these things just before I do.  She is doing all she can for us.  She begged the 1st grade teachers, but they won't do it.  Her plan now is to do a separate curriculum for Max.  It will be something that Max will get to work with a teachers assistant and in small groups.  She will also be sending work home for me to work with Max.  I am beginning to understand that there are some parents out there who are not willing or able to work with their kids.   I am so glad not to be one of them.  

I have come to understand in the matter of hours today that I am the one who is ultimately in charge of my son's education.  I am not sure what I am going to do.  This is an ever evolving situation.  I am going to see how this new plan of his teacher until the new year.  If I do not think things are getting better, I will have to take the next step and meet with the counselor and other staff members.  I want to make sure that my child is taken care of and challenged.  I will not let my kid not get be forgotten.  He will not be left behind because he is so far ahead, but what do we do now?  The whole No Child Left Behind thing that the government dropped upon us SUCKS.  There are children still being left behind, but the kid who is behind still gets extra help.  There are programs for those kids.  But, when a child is advanced and going above all the rest, they are being held back because our teachers are so busy trying to go down the middle of the road.   Where does that leave my child?  We cannot afford private school to ensure he is getting challenged and there is no program at his school for advanced students.  

I know that Max is only in kindergarten, but if I don't start working on this now, who knows where he will end up.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I have been working my butt off to get Christmas things completed.  I just realized that next Thursday is Thanksgiving.  And, Thanksgiving is our family Christmas for the in-laws.  AAHHHHH!  I took up crocheting about a month or so ago.  I am not sure what I was thinking when I decided to do a blanket for my newest niece.  But, it is part way finished or started, depending on how you look at it and I cannot stop now.

Wish me luck.

Monday, November 15, 2010

back to real life

Everyone up at 6:30 AM.  Breakfast, kids dressed and out the door.  Dropped Max off and then to Walgreens to pick up a few little things.  Drop Ben off at 9 AM.  Home to do dishes, laundry and make a grocery list.  Pick Ben up at 11 AM.  Grocery shopping for 2 hours (ugh).  Get home ready to put groceries away.  Too bad I had to rearrange the freezer to put it all in....once that was done, the pork tenderloin did not fit anymore.  So, out it came...had to go into the frig.  Then had to clean out the frig so it would fit in there to thaw.  As I cleaned out the frig, I found condiments in there that were dated 2008.  Guess I should have done that earlier...or at least paid attention to the dates.  Got that done about 2 PM.  Laid down for 30 minutes...then off to get Max.  Home to do  homework with Max.  Somewhere along the way, I put a bone out in my foot and then my SI joint.  Matt helped with dinner.  Boys finally went down at 7 PM.  Feels like the longest 12 1/2 hours in my life.

While I enjoyed my quiet time...this is my real life.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


I am so thankful today that my family came home today.  Matt took the boys to Holyoke for pheasant season.  They had a blast, but that are all home and tucked in bed now.

It was nice to have a quiet weekend....but I am always happy when the get back home.

Big week starting tomorrow.  Off to spend some time with my hubby and then to bed.

All is well here...thanks be to God.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


I woke up this morning about 7 AM (which I consider the best time to wake up).  It was eerily quiet in my house.  Too quiet.  I started to panic....it was too quiet.  Then I remembered that all the men in my family are in Holyoke for the beginning of pheasant season.  I have a total love/hate relationship with spending time away from the guys.

Yesterday afternoon Ben was just all up in the air about wanting to go to Granna's.  He did not want to be away from me.  Then Matt and I told him that Matt was going to Holyoke to shoot a bird.  He stopped crying and said he needed his gun to shoot a rabbit.....he has a play revolver from Halloween.  He also thought it was cool that he might be able to pluck all the feathers off the bird.  He is just too much.

Last night I went out with Becki.  We has a fabulous time.  We sat at Outback for almost 3 hours just chatting.  I loved it.  So nice to have another chic to just hang out with.  We went to Old Navy after that and bought nothing.  That was great too....neither of us thought we "needed" anything from the store.  We even turned our noses up at somethings; wondering who actually wears those things.  Finally ended up at Walmart. You need to know that Becki is Max's kindergarten teacher.  We have been talking about Max's reading ability and that we need to work on his writing.  She told me about the journals they are doing and that she is always on the hunt for stickers for the journals.  Not everyday teacher stickers...but just everyday stickers.  The kids are using their site words to start a sentence and the stickers to finish time; so they need to be nouns.  We managed to find a bunch of stickers for her along with some goodies for the treasure chest (the kids get to pick out of it when they have been exceedingly good).  I had a fabulous time with Becki and cannot wait to do it again.  *****Is it okay to be such good friends with Max's teacher?*****

Today I am going to work on my scrapbook page for tomorrow's stamp club.  I am so excited to do the page.  It is going to be a Christmas page.  This will be my last month doing a real stamp club.  I am done doing the page every month and having all the girls over.  It is getting hard and harder for me.  i just cannot commit the time for this.  I always end up doing the page the night before and I am just too tired.  I am going to continue to   be a Close to My Heart consultant.  I love the products, but I am just going to do card workshops, catalog parties, and regular parties.  It will be fun to work on it every once in awhile, but not be tied to it.

I am not sure what tonight holds.  Maybe a Lifetime movie and junk food.  No matter what happens, it will be quiet and be just me.  I miss my family, but I am going to enjoy all the quiet I can get.  Maybe I won't even turn the tv on today.  Who knows??????

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Why does my little one have to be sick again?  Max had a fever on Monday, but he got over it quickly.

Now, Ben has whatever it is that Max had.  Ben woke up about 8:30 last night crying for what we thought was no reason.  He could not tell us what was wrong.  Matt thought he felt a bit warm so we gave him some IB.  At 4 AM this morning, Ben, again, woke up crying not knowing why.  I took his temperature and he was at 101.2.  I thought that it might have been elevated because he had been sleeping under all the blankets. I cuddled him back to sleep.  Then he woke up at 5:15....Matt got in bed and cuddled him to sleep that time.  At 6:15 there was no getting him back to sleep.  He wanted to lay on the couch with me.  So, we laid there and I held him while he cried.   7 AM came around and I knew I needed to get him some IB....I took his temperature then and it was 102.2.  I got a cold wash cloth to put on his head and then a glass of ice water.  He started whimpering again. So, I took his temp again about 30 minutes later and it has gone up to 102.9.  I put the little guy into a cool bath and he seemed fine.  He actually told me it was cold, but wanted to play with his toys.

He has been up and down the rest of the day.  I did get his temp down to 98.8 for a period of time, but by 12:15 it was back up.  Poor little guy has not eaten much and just wants to be held.  He rarely falls asleep in the living room.....today he was out cold in my lap.  I put him in his bed and he has been asleep for more than 2 hours now.  I went in to check on him a little while ago and his temp seemed to be coming down, but I gave him some Tylenol just to be safe.  He woke up, looked at me and then went right back to sleep.

I am so happy that it seems to be coming down.  I am just happy that there is not one sign of breathing problems.  I really don't want to see that happen.  I can handle the fever and anything that comes with, but the breathing problems will send me over the edge again.  Keep your fingers crossed that we can kick this in the butt quickly and we can make it without breathing problems.

God, I thank you for all that you have given me.....but please...hold my baby in your hands and take care of him.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gundrum Deals

I don't know if all of you know that my maiden name is Gundrum....but you need to know that to understand.  My family (the Gundrums) is all about deals.  We are always trying to one up each other for deals.  It is fun to make the phone call to the others in the family to brag about your deal.

So, having explained that.....I need to brag about my deals for the day.  It is just after 10 AM and I have saved $23 on a $55 grocery bill.  Yep, I rock.  Two deals really stand out.  You know those pork tenderloins you can by pre-marinated.  They are usually $9.99 each.  I love them...they are so easy to make for a quick dinner.  I can just unwrap them and stick them in the oven.  The meat just melts in your mouth and the boys all love them.  But, $9.99 is expensive for my budgeted grocery budget.  I always check the clearance section for meats.   Today I found those pork tenderloins for $2.99 each.  I bought all three that were in there.   I got three for less than the price of one.  Hooray!  Three quick and easy meals.

Second deal: I always read the coupons to make sure I get the right thing so my coupons work.  Today Safeway had store coupons for things that were already on sale.  I thought $2.22 was a good deal for a 12.5 oz box of Cheerios....that is what the sale was plus a coupon the box was only $1.99.  Not quite $.30, but every little bit helps.  I got to the cereal isle and found the cereal for $2.22.  I read the coupon to make sure I was getting the right thing.  Turns out the coupon said it was for an 18 oz. box.  Well, there were no 18 oz. boxes.  I asked a clerk I had seen putting up cereal boxes on the end cap.  I showed him the coupon and then the sale ad.  Lucky for me, he happened to be the merchandiser for that section.  He decided that since the coupon said 18 oz and there were no 18 oz boxes; I could have the bigger box 22.5 oz for the sale price of $1.99.  Hooray, the bigger box on sale was $4.39.  How awesome is that?  Huge savings there.

I am so happy with myself today.  I managed to save a bunch of money on the groceries today.  And, even though I get my monthly grocery allowance on Monday, I still have almost 1/4 of last  months left.  HOORAY!  Now I can buy some things to stock up on for those months I totally blow it on the budget.  But, if I keep on this saving binge I might not do that again.

Save and save some more.  Thanks to God.  He did not just give me a fish today so we had food for today, but taught us how to fish so we can eat for a life time.  Okay...does not make total sense, but he did provide for me today and for a few more days to feed my family on very little money.  Same thing, right?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Cooking Dinner.......

I have been trying to cook dinner every night.....I was not doing it for so long.  I would get fast food or find some box of stuff in the pantry.  Not to mention all the frozen stuffs I would make.

I got a great new cook book for the crock pot and I love it.  "Busy Woman's Slow Cooker Cookbook"  I have made some things out of it and most have turned out really well.  I like being able to make it in the morning.  As strange as it sounds....my body is just too tired at 4 or 5 pm to make dinner.  It works so hard to keep itself together all day that I just want to collapse by then.  So, this is a great thing for me.  I can use the energy I have in the morning and feed my family a nice meal.

Today's meal:  Mexican Casserole
6 corn tortillas, cut into strips
1 pound lean ground beef, browned and drained
1 (10 3/4 oz) can of cream of mushroom soup
1 (103/4 oz) can of cream of chicken soup
1 (14.5 oz) can of chopped tomatoes with green chile ( I used salsa)
8 oz Velveeta  cheese, cubed
In slow cooker, place tortilla strips.  Layer beef, soup, and tomatoes over tortilla strips.  Top with cheese.  Cover.   Cook on low for 3 to 4 hours
Makes 6 to 8 servings

I am feeling better about doing things for my family.  I had gotten into a depression/rut and I think I am ready to come out the other side.  I am taking better care of my family and myself.  Things are just all around better here.  Matt and I had date night on Friday.  I loved it...makes my heart feel better.  It had been so long since we did that.  I loved just talking to him and not having to worry about anything, other than eating.  (Luigi's on Tejon is fabulous...all homemade pasta, YUMM-O)

I have also subscribe to a website called flylady.com....it is helping me overcome what I feel has been overwhelming.  I have let the house go and just not know where to start to get back to "normal."  This website is great.  It gives you a place to start and not feel like you are fighting a loosing battle.  I love it...everyday I get a little more done each day.  I get an email each day that lets me know what is on my "flight plan" for the day.  Today is a day to look up in the kitchen.  Look up and see what needs washed and dusted above the cabinets and on top of the frig.  10 mins is all you get and then it is time to move on.  There is a list of other things you need to do each day too.  I have a launch pad for the boys each morning.  Shoes, coats and backpacks are all together by the front door: need to make sure you have all you need there for the next morning.  I, also, have what is known as a hot spot.  It is a place where "things" collect.  I spend 15 mins each day going through what has collected there.  Mine is on the end of the counter in my kitchen.  Usually it is mail and things from the kids backpacks.  Funny how many things go there that we don't need to keep.  It is nice to have the space clean.  I put a few family pictures there to try to keep me from putting things there (not working so well, but I am trying).

Life is good today.....thanks be to God and all he has done for us.

PS: Update....I thought dinner was gross.  Okay, not gross, but not great either.  I think I may try this again but change a few things.

skip the cream of chicken soup
add tomato soup or better yet....

Skip cream of chicken and velveeta
go with one can of cheddar cheese soup.

not sure...we will see

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Turning Back Time

Today was the day to turn back the clock.  Funny thing to go back in time.

Makes you think about going back in time.  What part of your life would you go back to?  I am not sure.  I really enjoyed my time in Hawaii, it was great fun.  Maybe I would go back to that point for a very short period.  I would never change anything though.  I am happy with my life.  I love my family.  It is awesome to have what I have now.  Maybe I really don't want to go back in time.

Boys did not care that it was the day to turn back time.  They were both up at 5:30, new time.  No chance of convincing them to go back to bed.  They did lay with Matt in bed for awhile, but not for too long.  Matt got up with them so I could sleep a little longer.  Then I got up and Matt went back to bed.  As people of an older age....it would be nice to have an extra hour of sleep.

It is now, currently, 7:58.  Sure does feel like 9:00, LOL.  Guess I should go to bed...might be able to get that extra hour in tonight.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

beautiful day

It is November and we live in Colorado.  It was 80 degrees today.  Beautiful.  The boys had a great time today. They spent most of the time outside.  It was so fun for them.  I was working on my card workshop, but I could see out the door.  They played sidewalk chalk for awhile.  Max likes to make a hop scotch and jump up and down.  Ben got into the bubbles and spilled more than he got to blow. They played soccer for awhile.  Then it was off to the sand box.  I think the best part of the day was when they decided they wanted to have lunch outside.  They have 2 little chairs and sat at a side table.  It was so cute.  They came in after lunch and took a name.  Then it was back outside.  They enjoyed their popcorn balls.  Finally, they were tired.  I brought them in and bathed them.  After that it was pizza....Max earned a personal pan pizza for reading so much last month.  Finally off to bed.  They are both passed out tired.  What a beautiful day.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Fish Fish Fish

My little boys are turning into fish.  We have swim lessons every Tuesday and Thursday.  And, trust me, they never let me forget.  First thing in the morning they jump up and down about it being swim day.  We usually have to get our swim suits out and ready for the evening.  We don't go until 6 pm and that seems like forever after school before swims lessons.

Ben is on his third session of swim lessons.  And, he just loves it.  He started jumping in by himself this time.  He gets so excited that he has jumped in before the class started.  Thank goodness the teacher was paying attention before the class.  She grabbed him right up and set him back on the side.  Ben happily goes under the water without even thinking about it.  He has also learned to use the kick board to kick on his front and back.   I am also impressed that they are teaching him to do front and back floats.  It is too funny to watch that.  He is held up by his tummy and told to make airplane arms.  So, he does that but still looks up at the teacher.  When he is told to put his face in the water, it is one quick dunk and back up.  Too cute.  He is also learning to go under the water to get a dive ring.  So, it is only on the platform, but it is still all the way under the water.  He is just doing a fabulous job.

Max is just amazing in the water.  We started midsummer with lessons.  He was not so sure about it.  He did not even jump off the side without help.  Now, he is so excited to get into the water.  He not only jumps off the side without help, but has started going off the diving board by himself.  That is a huge step for him.  I am so proud of him.  He has also been put in the appropriate class now.  He kept getting put into a 2-3 class when he really should have been in a 3 class.  The 2-3 class kept doing the same things over and over again.  So, I as a helicopter mom, suggested that they make a 3-4 class.  They did and he loves it.  He is swimming by himself now, in short bursts.  He just does not have the stamina to swim long distances yet.  He has not mastered the freestyle stroke, but is doing the breast stroke already.  I think the breast stroke is actually easier for him.  He is also learning to dive.

I am so proud of these little guys.  I am sad that they swim lessons will be moving to Thursdays only.  At least they are not making us all go to Saturday mornings.  There are fewer swimmers in the evening classes and it also frees us up to go to Holyoke or on some other adventure on the weekends.  Fish, Fish, Fish.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Good Day

Good Morning World,

I woke up in a great mood today.  I actually had more than 5 minutes to talk to my husband last night.  That always makes me feel better.  I don't feel so overwhelmed with life when I know I have someone to share the responsibilities with.

I am also tickled to have so many respond favorably to my Card workshop.  It is awesome.  Yesterday morning  I was planning on canceling it because I only had one person who had committed to coming.  Now, I have 9 people committed for sure and one possible.  That makes 10.  From one to 10 in a matter of 8 hours.  Makes me so happy.  It is awesome.  I feel great about it.  I feel like I have something to look forward to...other than family things.

The boys are doing well this morning.  Max told me this morning that I do not need to get out and stand on the playground with him before school anymore.  I now drop him off at the gate like all the other Moms.  He jumps out, kisses me, and runs off to play with his kids.  It is great that he is so independent, but it makes me sad that he does not need me so much.  Sad for me, but happy for him.

Ben is great.  I am so thankful that he is healthy.  Busy, busy, busy....and healthy.  Keeps me busy too.  Today he had an amazing idea.  He decided that he should bring the portable DVD player in from the car.  He informed me that if he could bring it in he could watch a movie while I get to watch the Today Show.  He said, "I know it is important for you to watch the Today Show so you can see outside."  I had to laugh.  I always tell them that I like to watch the Today Show so I can see what it going on in the world.

I love my life and I thank God every day for all the blessings he has bestowed upon my family.  Praise God and thank him for all he gives to us.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Light Bulb

So, my brother sent out these adorable stuffed animals from Harrod's (London) as baby to be announcements.

My boys each got one.  Ben got a puppy and has decided that the puppy shall be named "light bulb."  No idea where that came from, but it makes him happy.  Ben is very certain that he will be called Light Bulb and nothing else.  I tried to come up with another name that made sense, but he is not having it.

Max got a bear.  He has named his bear "buddy."  Which, actually has some meaning behind it.  I have always called my brother "Buddy Bear."  So, Max decided that since his bear came from Uncle Buddy Bear....it was only fitting that he name his bear Buddy.  Now he has his own Buddy Bear he can love on each night.

Did I mention that these animals are WHITE!  They are beautiful, white, super soft, and I have decided were rather expensive.  Aside from being super soft......these animals are not really meant for little people.  Guess my brother will learn once he has his little one.  I have explained that these animals are to be loved as night time animals and not played with during the day.  Not sure how well that will go over, but the boys love them and no matter what happens they will be well loved.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

My Little Politicians

My little boys are awesome.  Three and Five......they both know who they would vote for.  Max was very upset that he did not get to go with me to vote.  I did take Ben with me and he was upset that he could not fill in the circles too.  When I went to take some things to Max's classroom, made sure

Even funnier......Ben walked around tell everyone to vote for Ken Buck and Tom Tancredo.  So sorry to the those around me who were trying to vote.  I did try to keep him quiet, but how can you harness the energy of a three year old who thinks he has it all figured out.

The family will be so happy that I am bringing up the next generation of Republicans.  I am sure Uncle Duckie will be the happiest.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Ben's Heart Update

Ben Heart Update

I just wanted to post a quick update for all my family and friends who have been praying for Ben (3 yrs).

I spoke with the cardiologist today.  They got the results from the 24 hour heart monitor.  He said that Ben's heart rate is elevated, but it did fluctuate.  The important thing is that it did change with activity.  Ben's little heart just runs like a hummingbird.   His heart function is normal.  The doctor would like me to take Ben to see the Heart Rate specialist in 3 months.   I was told that Ben's high heart rate is abnormal, but since he is doing better and it is a constant high we are not going to push the panic button now.  BUT, it is not something we are just going to forget about either. So, we are going to monitor him for problems and see where we are in 3 months.

We spent the weekend out in Holyoke, which usually triggers all the problems we have with Ben.  (We have actually debated not moving because of it.)  This time Ben was great.  The rest of us are a little snotty, but not Ben.  He is doing super.  I think that after seeing the pulmonologist/allergist and getting his allergy medicine, we are doing much better.  I am so happy to not be worrying about him after this trip.

I am starting to feel better about Ben and all the health problems we have had this summer.  I think we might be on the other side of this thing.

Thank you all for your support and prayers.  I fully believe in the power of prayer.  Thank all of you and God for the wonderful outcome.