Thursday, December 31, 2009


So, the new house has silver lame wallpaper in the kitchen. I bought all the stuff to get it off. I spent three hours yesterday, attempting to get it off the wall. I got about one third of it off, maybe creeping towards a half. But the paste is still on the wall, and I understand you have to get that off too.

Stripping wallpaper is not for the faint at heart. First you have to score the wall, then spread on the goo, then wait, then start taking pieces off. Just when you are ready to give it up for the day, you get a really big piece off and keep going. I officially hate stripping wallpaper. I am beginning to look at the white with black felt wallpaper in the front hallway in a whole new light. It's not so bad. It's actually coming back into style. Because as hard as the silver lame stuff is, the felt stuff will be harder. So what if my front hallways looks like a bordello, what do I care?

Okay, I will probably be stripping
that bad boy too, but MAN, this is harder than I thought. I clearly remember helping my sister do this like twenty years ago and you used some kind of toxic stuff with gloves and it just shooped right off the wall. I could not find the toxic stuff. I need the toxic stuff, not this stuff I can use without gloves and around children.

One of my best friends has a steamer, but she lives in Illinois and I live in Michigan. How much pizza and wine do you have to promise to get people to help you strip wallpaper? Just asking.

Have you ever taken on a home improvement project that should have been easy and once you got into it, wanted to just stop? That's how I feel right now.

God bless you and yours.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Years?

When I was younger, we used to go to the Tempe Block Party on New Year's Eve. I actually saw the Gin Blossoms there in concert. Met them too and my friend Cindy dated the drummer. I used to be cool. The Tempe Block Party is an outside party where they shut down Mill Ave and there are games and beer gardens and fun. Leave there, get some Denny's and get home around 4:00 a.m. No problem.

Now, we stay home with the kids, eat snacks and make noise at midnight. If we make it that far. Then we go to bed and "sleep in" until 8 or 9 in the morning. Woohoo. Hey, if that makes me uncool, so be it. I cannot come back from a six hour drunk anymore. It takes at least a week and I do NOT have that kind of time. I don't even drink anymore. I just don't see the point.

So we stay in and have fun and we love it. I probably like it more than all those wild New Year's of my youth because I don't have to recover. Except from too little sleep. That is no big deal. I can always go to bed at like 7:00 p.m. the next night. So I am an old fogey and I love it. I don't want to be out there with all the non-designated driver's at 3:00 a.m. It's a slim chance that a drunk driver will plow into my house. I know it happens, but it's a one in a million to me. Being out there on the roads definitely increases my chances of being hurt or worse.

So what do you do on New Years? Stay home with the kids or go out and play? Share the love.

God bless you and yours.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

So, when it rains, it pours

Yesterday morning, in a spurt of energy, I planned my day. Wake up at 5:30, read bible, make coffee, finish laundry, run to new house to strip wallpaper, get some stuff for closing on new house, go to work. Well........In getting the laundry basket, which was quite full, off of our little "shelf" on the sink by the washer, the board covering the sink slid off and landed right on my right foot. The pain was instant and would not go away. After about 45 minutes of trying to convince myself that I was fine, that shooting pain when I moved my foot was normal, I gave up. I woke up my mother-in-law, and explained the situation.

I have to tell you, I hate the ER and will avoid it at all costs. I would rather just go to urgent care. If that makes me stupid, so be it. Urgent care does not open until 10:00 a.m.. How is that "urgent"? Six in the morning is urgent, ten in the morning is just humming along. So after ice and swelling, I am off to urgent care. With the nine thousand other people who got sick or hurt this weekend.

In between all this, I have to call my boss at Starbucks and tell her I think I broke my foot. We have been super, super busy this holiday season, so this went over like a lead balloon. She was great and got my next three shifts covered, but I feel as if I am letting my team down. I hate that.

As I sit in not so "urgent" care, I get called back, and X-rayed and there is no break. Then why all the pain I ask? Well, you have bruised the soft tissue and that usually hurts worse than a break. Great. More pain and a longer "recovery". Fabulous. All this and we are supposed to close on the new house this week and move and get stuff done and all that jazz.

I have several friends who are going through the "pouring" stage. It's not just raining, it's not just pouring, it's flooding in epic proportions. I am constantly amazed how much junk life can throw at a mom/wife and how we continue to bounce back and keep going. We, as moms and warriors of God, ROCK. I will admit to a lot of praying and reading of the bible, but that is my "go to" strategy. Pray and give it to God and sit back and be amazed at His wondrous grace. We beat the Energizer bunny, hands down.

I will limp along on my day today, did not sleep well, might go back to bed. Is it raining in your life??? Some sprinkles or a downpour? Share the love.

God bless you and yours.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Shelby mother pens 'Chicken Soup' stories - News - Advisor

Shelby mother pens 'Chicken Soup' stories - News - Advisor & Source

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When to take down Christmas

So the eternal question is......when do we take down Christmas. I know some people leave the lights on their house all year long, but I am not speaking about them. When do you take down the Christmas stuff?

I admit it, I love Christmas. Love it. Love everything about it. Wanted more snow this year, and that didn't happen, but still, love it. I have collected nativity scenes for years and I love putting them out. Since we have been living in limbo for a couple of years, they have stayed packed, but I am looking forward to getting them all out next year. I have bins upon bins of Christmas decorations. I did restrain myself this year because we are moving shortly, so there is not that much stuff out.

I do remember one year when the thought of putting it all away became overwhelming to me. I think we do that to ourselves sometimes, psych ourselves out of something. I finally put everything away when my in-laws were coming to visit, in February. Yikes. Sometimes the thought of the job is worse than the job itself.

My usual routine, because I have a fake tree, is put it up right after Thanksgiving and take it down on New Year's Day. That seems about right and gets me just about six whole weeks of Christmas cheer. I usually forget one thing and that stays up all year. But I had a dear friend once tell me that you are supposed to do that, so there.

When do you take down Christmas? How does it make you feel? Share the love.

God bless you and yours.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Taking some time off....

Taking a little time off to move and be crazed by that. And of course, taking time off to celebrate Christmas with the family. I will see you in the new year. God bless us everyone.

God bless you and yours.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Wrapping the gifts

So, as I sit here blogging, I need to be wrapping. The shopping is done (mostly) and now I must wrap. I do this after many years of wrapping on Christmas Eve and cursing myself for not doing it sooner. I have no rhyme or reason on how to wrap, I just want to get it done.

I have a friend who wraps her kids presents all in different paper for each child. One gets santa, one gets candy canes, etc. etc. So then, she puts them all under the tree and doesn't tell them which is which until Christmas morning. That's one way of doing things. I admire it, I just don't do it.

I also do not put any presents under the tree until Christmas eve after the kids have gone to bed. To me, there is something so magical about waking up to all that under the tree. I love that expression of joy on their faces when they see it all. That's my tradition.

Everyone has different and wonderful traditions. Some open presents on Christmas Eve, some go to midnight mass, some have family Christmas early (we did that yesterday and the house was CLEAN) some just read the Chrismas story on Christmas eve. Whatever your tradition is, I say embrace it. Be silly, be serious, be whatever you need to be, just embrace the season and the craziness.

I am off to wrap, wrap, wrap. Have a blessed day.

God bless you and yours.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Cleaning for Christmas

Why do we do this? The family is coming over Sunday, so we need to clean every nook and cranny. Why? Is the family really looking in corners for dust bunnies? The house will be destroyed after thirty people eat dinner, sit around talking, someone will wrestle. Blah, blah, blah. So why do we do it?

And who in the heck started this anyways? I mean, I clean up on a regular basis, and there is no black ring in my toilet, so who was the first? Can we go back in time and beat her up a little bit? Was she cocky enough to have a maid and demand this stuff? I'm just saying.

Isn't your family supposed to love you warts and all? Why not dust bunnies and all? Today, I shall move the couches, vacuum the couches, deep clean the bathroom, and then go to Starbucks and work for five hours in an outdoor mall when the wind chill is five below zero. Whatever.

I love Christmas as much as the next person, but this is getting ridiculous. What are you cleaning up for this Christmas season.

God bless you and yours.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Dreaming of a White Christmas

So, we get rain instead of snow. My kids were very disappointed that they did not have a snow day. They live for snow days, and we only get about three a year. We had a little snow and now rain, and later, just for kicks and giggles, it's getting cold enough to freeze all the rain. Should make rush hour interesting.

My favorite past time in the midwest is watching snow fall. It's so calming and quiet. Turn off every electrical appliance, and light and watch it snow. The big fat flakes are the best. I would settle for around ten inches on Christmas Eve, as long as I am off and can sit and enjoy the snow.

My kids want to have snowball fights, make snow angels and snow men. I do too. So fun. This month we are getting ready to move right after Christmas, so I will take all the calm I can get, and all the fun.

So, as our holidays get more and more hectic, I encourage you to slow down, watch some snow or a sunset, or the grass grow. Take a minute or an hour and settle your soul.

God bless you and yours.

Monday, December 7, 2009

To Carmel Corn or not to Carmel Corn

As Christmas approaches, I am ferklempt. I do not really feel like doing my holiday baking. I always make carmel corn. Last year, for our women's tea at church, I made carmel corn for 100 ladies. Yuck. Don't get me wrong, I love me some carmel corn. Especially when it comes out of the oven and you eat it warm. It is seriously the best stuff in the world.

So here I sit, getting ready to move right after Christmas. I have the family Christmas here this Sunday. I have youth events and chaos and love and stuff to do. I do not have that warm fuzzy feeling of baking and love in the kitchen. Because to bake is to love. I always bake with love and I always make carmel corn for the holidays. It's just a crazy holiday for me this year.

I don't want to make cookies or decorate them or clean up after the whole baking scene.

Here is my question, is that wrong? Is it wrong not to want to bake for hours on end and be so tired I cannot see? I am already that tired and I have not baked one small thing. I love Christmas, but this one will probably be very low key.

So, am I wrong or right? Should I bake or not? Share the love.

God bless you and yours.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The New House

So, after months of searching and eleven offers, we have a contract on a new house. Well, it's new to me. It's an 1800 square foot ranch with an 1800 square foot finished basement. It's on a lake, which is very nice. It also has not been updated since 1963, when it was built. We call it the disco house. I will add some more pictures to the side of this post, you will die laughing. The thing is, the basement is so obnoxious I have to keep it pristine. It has red and orange shag carpet up the walls surrounding my black naugahyde circle bar. Now, we are not big drinkers, and the bar will probably be stocked with pop and juice, and for parties, the occasional beer or wine. It does have a mini-fridge.

It's the main level I have issues with, serious issues. Sky blue and silver lame wallpaper in the kitchen. That matches the white countertops with sky blue trim. Which matches the painted cabinets that, for some unknown reason, they took sky blue detail tape, the kind you detail cars with, and "accented" the cabinets with it. They also used sky blue shelf paper, even on the outside of a cabinet, to "blend" it in with the whole kitchen theme. When you finally recover enough to look down, it's to see lavender linoleum (it was probably sky blue in 1963) inset with white starbursts in key locations. There are no words.

We also have a "yellow" bathroom. Here in the midwest in the 1960/1970 era they color coded bathrooms. So I have a yellow tub/shower, yellow tile all around it and up the walls, yellow sinks and a yellow toilet. This can be done quite tastefully if you downplay the color in the rest of the bathroom, they decided to accent it more. I have gold faucets. Gold lame butterfly wallpaper. They painted the cabinets yellow. They put those smokey gold lined mirror squares around the toilet. It's a sight not to be believed. We also have a pink bathroom, accented with gray. And pink roses on the striped wallpaper. Again, you have to see it to believe it.

This said, some paint, and new kitchen counter tops and some tile here and there and it will be an awesome house. It has cove ceilings and in it's day was definitely a custom house. We just need to give it some tender loving care. I have lovingly described this house at work and some unknown Santa delivered a disco ball to me by way of an elf. I have absolutely no idea who it was, but I am hanging that bad boy in the basement. Now all I need is a lava lamp and strobe light.

Any moving horror stories? What about wallpaper? Share the love. And the pictures if you have them. At the end of the day, the view is worth it.

God bless you and yours.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Black Friday sales

Okay, was I the only one who went out at 4:00 a.m. to get a portable DVD player for $47.00? Just asking. I actually hit Walmart and Target and was home by 8:15. Does this make me a crazy person or a saver of money? Most people will tell you both.

The Black Friday sales are not for the faint at heart or the easily offended. The line in Target started in the very back of books, went through electronics, back around garden to the food section, where you "looped around" and went back to garden, to bikes and then you began the loop towards the front of the store. At one point, the lines intersect. Some lady was mad. Very mad, she had gotten in the wrong line. Because there was a line for electronics that was different than the regular line. There was mass confusion and chaos ensued. This lady wanted to make sure no one was cutting in line in front of her because she had already, blah, blah, blah...... It's the Black Friday sales, what did you expect? There are going to be lines, ridiculous lines, there is no avoiding them.

There is a bonus to the lines. People swarm at the opening and just start shoving stuff into their carts. Then, as they sit in line for 30-45 minutes (or longer) they discard what they really don't want. That is how I found a hoodie in Tyler's size. Because, when I finally reached the hoodie section, there were three smalls left in blazing red. Standing in line there were digital photo frames, DVDs, various articles of clothing and someone actually put down one of the Ipod touch's that were on sale. Someone scooped that puppy right up. You have to be on alert for these things, the discards can be something you came in for and missed because you were getting something else.

I have seen it all at these sales. Oh, the humanity. I find it ironic that while attempting to get a bargain for the "giving" season, someone, in order to get a good parking space, nearly ran down ten people, honking all the way. All sense of decency goes out the window. Unless you stand by me, I refuse, absolutely refuse, to be rude or upset if I missed my "bargain". That is just the nature of the beast. I say "excuse me" and "thank you" and I will pass you the movie you cannot reach because the carts are ten deep. A little help, a little smile, a joke to pass the time. All these things can make the chaos a little bit cheerier.

So, did you go out on Friday, or sleep quietly in your bed? Share your story.

God bless you and yours.