Friday, December 16, 2011

I haven't forgotten

I haven't forgotten about my blog.   Its not that I havent had anything to say.   Its just that, well, its Christmastime and I've been busy.  Excuses....yes, but 90% of my gift giving this year is homemade and the rest has been at really good bargains, which take a little time to find.   I purchased exactly two items that weren't at least 50% off and they were both for my hubby.   So I'm working on a good Christmas post....stay tuned!

Monday, December 5, 2011

December 5

I used to think a decade was a long time.   Ten years....amazing what can happen.   But at the same time, I remember ten years ago today like it was yesterday.   It was a day much like many others.   I had finished classes for the day, gone back to my apartment and was talking to Mom on the phone.  Her call waiting beeped.  It was a number she didnt recognize but she answered it.  I stayed on the line both of us assuming that she would quickly return to our conversation.  She did, but it had been my dad on the phone.  He'd  ben in a "little" accident on his way to work.  He was fine but he was going to let them take him to the hospital anyway.   Of course I was already in Springfield, so I beat the ambulance to the hospital.   I beat my mom to the hospital.  I sat....paced the waiting room, watching for ambulances to arrive.   Finally I saw the one from stone county and saw them wheel daddy in.  strapped to the guerney I could see he was talking to the ambulance guys but I couldnt tell much else.  Mom, Tara, and Blaine, a one month old came in immediately following the ambulance.  They took xrays, they gave him pain medicine, he introduced us to his new guardian angel, and they sent him home, telling him he could go back to work in a couple days.  Ten years later, the pain has never completely gone away.  I wonder sometimes about the girl that hit him.  I remember the many conversations backpaxking with my ddad, talking about how God evidently still had a job for him on earth in order for him to have survived.   You see, his "little accident"  was really a sixty plus mile per hour head on collision.  Three months qlater he was able to go back to work, but he hasnt had a day without pain in those ten years.  But he hasnt stopped living, and I think of all thats happened in those ten years...we've had many fun backpacking trips in the rain, sleet, snow....and I think we've gone hiking in good weather too..just not as often!   I've seen my daddy go from more than just daddy...he lights up my little girls eyes when she plays with "pa pa"  Ten years ago, I was certain I was all grown up....looking back, I see how much I've grown.   I've watched my best friend have to give her daddy back to God eight years ago today and four years later, also give her Mom back to God.  I'm so thankful to still have both of my parents!  Ten years ago, I almost had a college degree and was going to conquer the world with it.  I've had my dream job, I've spoken at a professional national conference for my job, all before giving that up to have the best job in the  world...mommy.  So yes, in ten years a lot has happened.  We've taken good with the bad.  And yes, as we look back on today, a decade later, we are once again certain in the power of angels and so very thankful to still have Daddy around, because without angels, no one would have walked away from that wreck.  It also reminds us that our time on earth is not guaranteed.  So what will you do with the time you have left?

Ok, since I wrote this I have had technical issues, so it is being posted a day late.  I also wanted to add a funny story.  Emily.  The Nativity under the tree.  It is the Little People one, incredibly cute, that she has played with for the past year.  Ok, so we put it under the tree the other night and were talking about why all the different pieces were there, the angel, Jesus, Mary, the wise men, the sheep, and then we got to the donkey.  I told her that Mary rode the donkey into Bethlehem.  She said, "no, wait" and ran off into her bedroom, obviously with a mission.  She came back with another Little People horse, much larger than the donkey.  "Jesus mommy needs the best horse" cute. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

So far today....

Not much of anything has gone according to plan.  My hubby had lots of plans to get major things accomplished this weekend....woke up at 4 am with the "bug" that he believes he got because he stepped foot in the daycare room yesterday.  Regardless, his plans were shot.  Emily and I were getting her pictures made, going to the bank, and a few stores, getting groceries and going home.   Pictures went wonderfully, I'll put a few of my favorites at the bottom.  Will still need to do Christmas pictures, but isnt the best backdrop the one that God made?  Anyway, after we get done with that we are heading to the bank, less than  five minutes away.  "Mommy, I need poot poot...NOW"  followed immediately by "Mommy I poot poot my panties"  Uh oh.  So at the bank parking lot we get all cleaned up, she says she feels fine and so we go over to Big Lots, where they have a sale that if you spend $15 on Disney Princess or $15 on Barbie you get a $20 toy free in the mail.  Yeah, wasn't impressed with their selection, and what we really don't need are more toys!  Anyway, so we arrive at Big Lots and start getting out of the car, "Mommy I need to pee pee"  Ok, surely they have a public restroom.  We hurry.  Hurry, carrying her to try to get to the bathroom quickly (I'm thinking her stomache is upset), and I came across a pot hole.  I didnt see it.  I twisted my ankle and said "Ouch" evidently much louder than I thought cause another lady came over to see if I was ok (at that point I wasnt sure) and then I decided I was and she went and got me a cart.  Meanwhile, "Mommy I need to potty".  Ok, so I hobble into the store, wondering how badly I sprained my ankle, and we get to the bathroom on time.  Ok, maybe we should go home.  But the best deals at Kohls end at 1.  Must keep going.  From that point on the day improved.  Great deals were to be had at the salvation army (perfect princess cups for a Christmas tea party, a cute cardigan for me for a quarter, a pretty dress for fifty cents), got a couple things at dollar general, and then went on to Kohls, were I scored!  Tennis shoes, tights, princess lipgloss, total less than $3.  Went to the grocery store.  Saved $56.  Spent slightly over $100.  In this day and age, that's not too bad.  The ankle is tender but I can walk.  Groceries are in teh cabinet...yes, the day is improving, I think:)  At least its warm, even if the wind is approaching those blow you in front of a bus strengths!  So here are a couple of my favorite pictures.  Now to clean a little and finish the apron set I'm making for a little girl I watch.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

the great Santa debate

I didnt sleep well last night and while lying around I started thinking about none other than the jolly old elf himself....Santa Claus.  You see I don't remember ever believing in santa, although many kids I know did.  As an adult, we've had fun with Santa with my nephews.  But the fact remains, there is no Santa.  We have our children write letters to him, leave him cookies, and makes requests, hoping on Christmas morning to find a tree spewing forth all of their wants and wishes.   And while it can be fun, I question it as this season we are faced with the reality that if we start he Santa thing it is ours for years yo come, until that day when we have to look Emily in the eye and say, "yes sweetheart we have been lying to you about Santa now for your entire life.  That guy in the red suit you saw at Bass pro doesnt live at the north pole, he probably lives just down the street."  Ok, so there lies problem number one....we asked our children to believe in something with their whole hearts only to crush there sense of faith whenever they are old enough to realize Santa just won't work."   But lets say they come to this conclusion at the age of 8.   Slowly losing that innocence, we swipe a security blanket out from under them.   Meanwhile we've also been teaching them all about God, how to pray, and the story of the nativity and  christ dying for us.   Do you know an 8 year old?  If you disspell the Santa myth, isn't it going to make them question the very roots of their the important things?  Each night as Emily lays down to sleep, we talk to God.   Mostly she repeats after me, but she's learning about this awesome God of ours, how he cares about even the smallest little detail in our lives, down to the number of hairs on our heads.  Whythen do we feel as though we must attempt to make our children believe in something that will subsequentl break their hearts when they learn the truth?  I wan Emily to enjoy the holidays, and the "fun" part of Santa, but more importantly I want her to know how to give and share, not so much to receive.

Which brings me to my next train of thought.  As you probably know I enjoy following Ana White's blog.  She has great woodworking plans on sher site that she graciously shares for FREE!  She had a great idea this holiday...and has issued a challenge to all her readers which I'm passing on to you...the challenge.  Make something homemade this Christmas for someone you love.  But don't stop there.  Make another identical item (twice the product..but not really twice the work since you'll be using all the same tools/supplies) .  Donate your extra item to someone in need, whether it be a family you know to be struggling this Christmas, or through an organized charity.  For those of you near Joplin....finding a recipient won't be hard I'm sure.  For those of you in the Kansas City area, I don't know who all accepts homemade gifts however, Emily and I will be delivering our homemade rag doll to Children's Mercy.  They sounded very excited about the prospect of getting homemade cuddly donations.   So will you, join me in accepting the challenge?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Necessity is the mother of invention....right?

It is entirely possible that I will be required to go to the store in the near future, like tomorrow more than likely.  For dinner tonight we are having....we'll call it a Lori Special.  it is something similar to a bbq chicken pizza, however since I've never had one of those, I really can't say.  I was going to make loaded tortillas, a yummy recipe I found a while back.  and a throw together so fast Rachel Ray would be proud kind of dinner.  Well...what I thought was a package of flour tortillas is really a package of corn tortillas.  ok not exactly what I had planned, but should still work.  next step....refried beans.   oh yeah, we ate the last can two weeks ago and I havent been to the store.  I've made my own before, but the only kind of beans I actually have are dried, not ready to be smooshy on my tortilla shell in a couple minutes.  ok, next idea.  Pizza sounded good.  No mozzarella cheese, and weel, cheddar cheese just wasnt what I was wanting.  I had already thawed the bacon for the tortillas, we had a couple grilled chicken breasts left over, and cheddar cheese would go good with chicken and bacon, right?  well, I thought about rice, pasta, bread...oops out of bread and macaroni too.  I still had the pizza idea, and I could make pizza cruat.  but I would need sauce.  ranch would go good but i really dont like rancch...same goes for ho ey mustard.  then like a bolt of lighting I thought Barbecue sauce.  Perfect!  Of course I'd run out of that the other day too.  Not to be easily defeated, I had ketchup....and a computer with recipes galore...kc bbq sauce.  sounded like the perfect solution.  so a cup of ketchup and a few ingredients later I had bbq sauce.  So pizza crust, homemade bbq sauce, bacon, chicken and cheddar cheese.  sounds good.  I hope it is.   It is still cooking, I'll have to let you know.
I was very excited to have found a crockpot for $1 through facebook the other arrived today, so tomorrow its looking like vegetable soup for dinner!  I think I have vegetables.....I also received my barbie I paid $2.36 for.  she has a couch, laptop, cell phone, all the necessities you know.  And I know a little girl that just might like something like that for Christmas.   And this weekend I need to go to Kohls.  I think I can get her a pair of shoes fo $2, and then I have the $25 from disney that I'm going to use on a 'punzel dress, costing me a total of $1.50.   Wouldn't it be cool if I could get all my shopping done for under $10¿  ok no idea how i turned the question mark upside down.  but now i must go eat dinner.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Better Late Than Never

I haven't gotten the video on the computer yet, and I'm done for the evening.  Actually considering making her dress that I told her I'd get made SOON!  Anyway, here is a little Rapunzel...the $5 version, not the $35 one!  She liked it, so all was well.  And it had a castle hat.  All princesses neee a castle hat:)

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Total Toy Story Birthday

My little angel turned 3.  Now, that in and of itself may not sound like it would be a lot of work for mommy, but well, let's just say, I had fun, now I'm ready for the next project!  You see, I wanted her birthday to be special, plus I didn't want to pay a lot for gifts even though I wanted to get her nice things.  So many, many discounts later, I got her lots of toy story toys, and made, not bought, MADE her a barbie camper, totally from scratch.  That project I began in August.  I finished it last week.  It is the Barbie Airstream (the camper we usually use is the Bambi, so this works:)  However, the last two days, watching Barbie and company enjoy it has made all that work worth it.  At this time however I do not have a picture, but I guess it is just in her bedroom I could go take one...maybe tomorrow:)  So anyway, since all of her friends are here playing five days a week, her friend party had to be something really special....and I wasn't brave enough to take them anywhere so it had to be in the same place we play every day.  My newfound pinterest addiction added to the party ideas, and before long I had planned a toy story spectacular---which would have been better outside had it not been rainy and cold.  So inside it was.....

The claw game!  Remember Pizza Planet where Buzz and Woody got pulled out of the machine by "THE CLAW"?  We recreated this with some salad tongs and fruit snacks for prizes.  I attempted to make aliens, and currently that is the only major failure listed on my to do list.   Its not that I didnt try, its that my fleece aliens weren't agreeable and finally had to be given up on!
My favorite of the party games/decorations....The Potatoheads, Mr and Mrs, as pinata's.  Strange... maybe, fun...definitely!  As  you can tell by the strings, the Mrs was empty, Mr. was loaded with goodies.

Two games here, a Bullseye--stick pony rodeo (yep made the stick ponies) and a sunnyside donation box bean bag toss.  I had found some cute toy story fabric at Hancocks and cut out the characters and made bean bags.  The ponies were a little yarn, a little ribbon, a couple pieces of felt, and some dowel rods....add a little sewing, hot glue and polyfil and there were magically ten horses!
The cake table.  I made treat boxes which had their hats, a jessie hairbow, party blowers, bags for collecting candy, and a couple toy story paper things in them.  Add in a few decorations and we were ready for the party to begin.
To keep them calm and get them in the spirit before the party, we turned on none other than TOY STORY.  I think it was the third one, can't really tell for sure....she loves them all.  And yes, after the picture I did make them scoot back from the tv a little. 
The party began with discovering all the goodies in the boxes.  The hairbows were a hit!

Of course the oldest child there was Emily (other than my nephews and they didnt want ot wear the bows) and so they all had to have a little help putting in bows.  Thank goodness for good neighbors helping out!
She definitely figured out the blowers. 
The claw game was lots of fun!  Of course we blame inheritance on her tongue sticking out.
Emily surveying the party scene
More fun with the blowers.
You can see the hairbows here, didnt they turn out cute?
Ok, so the cupcakes were the color of mr. Potatohead and they were given eyes, nose and mouths to decorate them with before eating.  I think they just ate:)
The pinata was a hit, especially with my nephews.  Of course had they not been here we might still be swinging at the poor potato!

Emily had some pretty good swings.  So did a couple of the other girls, but ultimately Blaine broke it. 
But for some guests, partying was exhausting (they got to sleep, but this was definitely how I felt!)
Emily had to help me explain the game and hold up the bean bag board.  The only flaw to this game was I was letting them throw things which they thought was cool, however at one point a little shoe came hurdling at me!   And then we ate lunch and Happy Day party number 1 was over and it was time to prepare for partying with family!  (A much calmer group generally speaking)
They got the special train cake.  It took me less time to decorate than it took the cardinals to win game 7 of the world series!  And Emily helped.  See those pink cookies there, she shoved them in for me!

Here's the cake table.  Minus a few things I added on later.

And since Mrs. Potatohead survived the first party she got to come check out the second one:)
We began with gifts.  She now understands what it means when someone says, "present".  My child has WAY too many toys now.  But not a pair of toy story panties that I bought in August.  I wonder where I put those....
 We had dinner and then it was time for cake.
 She was a little bit of a showoff. 
 And she didnt like having to wait while we sang to blow out the candles.....
 There she blows!
 If you could tell what was going on in her mind, it was "Do it again"  So we relit the candles, resang happy birthday and she blew out the candles again.   She might have repeated that scenario all night had I let her!  Oh and the putting ice cream in muffin tins before the party was a brilliant idea, just dont overflow them or they are nearly impossible to get out.  The not stuck (ones that didnt overflow) worked great! 
 Then the showing off REALLY kicked in to high gear. 
 I finally let her play with the cake decorations, which Woody had broken, but was fixed with some super glue, however I emailed disney about it and they are sending me a gift card worth much more than I paid for the decoartions, so I have to say lots of nice good things about Disney!
 Cousin Rachel's birthday was on Wednesday so she put on a party hat too for the pictures. 
 Emily hasn't quite figured out how to show three yet on her fingers. 
And after all the commotion it was time to PLAY!  and wear every bit of clothing she got.   Finally this mornign she got to ride her scooter and watch beauty and the beast.  A great birthday, and now looking back I see why I feel a little tired this week.  Oh and the tooth extraction in the middle of all this might have something to do with it (but yes, my friends, my tooth (or lack of) feels MUCH better than it did last week!  Actually it feels better than it has for most of the last year).  And so, another birthday is behind, where to put all those toys???

Saturday, October 29, 2011


Can you believe its been three years?  I was looking through pictures the other day and its unreal how much she has grown, even since her birthday last year.   My 18 inch, 7 lb 4.6 oz baby has grown into a beautiful, ornery princess of a little girl that is now 3 ft 1 inch and 30 lbs!  I remember the day vivdly....the itching, horrible, tormentuous pressure socks, the water I would have done about anything to be allowed to drink.  The first glimpse of my daughter, the nurse commenting on her red hair before I had even had a chance to see her for more than a second, watching Neal hold her for the first time, magical moments that are once in a lifetime experiences, that we wait our whole lives for and then we blink and look up and our baby is running around yodeling with her friends as they giggle and scream and hide under the cake table at her third birthday party.  I wonder what will she become in life, and I pray that I'm guiding her the way I should.  I hope she knows to seek God in all things even at three years old.  And I watch her twirla nd dresss up and I remind myself to stop worrying about if she gets spaghetti on her good dress and just let her be my little princess.  Happy third birthday baby girl.  I love you and I'm sorrying I wasnt able to give you the fun day out I promised.

And it is even more unbelieveable is that ten years ago I got woken up at six am because my oldest nephew would be arriving soon.    And now he's nearly as tall as I am and I almost see teenager when I look at him, not little kid at all anymore.   Aunt Lori loves you Blaine!   I was going to call you but heard you were awfully busy for your tenth birthday...hope it was a great one!  

Yes, I realize their birthdays were yesterday but I was too busy to get this posted then so happy birhtday a day late....coming soon party pictures!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Day at the Pumpkin Patch

We took Emily to the pumpkin patch on Saturday.  I think she had a lot of fun.
She started with trying to catch this little chicken
Then she had to watch the piggies
Then she rode the train with Daddy.  She said Daddy was too big to ride.   We were kinda wondering if she wasn't right:)

Then the highlight of her week, she got to ride the pony!  At first she looked a little nervous,
but the longer she was on the pony, the bigger the grin got.

Then she had to ride the spring horse.
And take a hayride out to the pumpkins.  The first hay ride I'd ever been on where all the hay was covered in plastic.  Actually a very good idea....

We walked to the far end of the pumpkins to find the perfect one. (which was about the second one she saw, but she was having fun anyway)
She sat on this pumpkin for a picture but it had a hole in it and evidently bugs and that was much more interesting than posing!

And then off we went to see more pumpkins.
Here's where she started showing off for the camera.

Really showing off!
A perfect autumn picture.

Playing peek a boo behind the pumpkins
This was daddy's solution to carrying the pumpkin.  It didn't stay there long though because it looked like it was making her shirt choke her.
Getting ready to ride back with our pumpkin.