Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Wordless Wednesday 4/29/09

Thanks goodness she's only washing dishes and not watches or laptops!
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Monday, April 27, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 4-27-09

(Click on the banner above to see everyone participating)

Suffice it to say the word "plan" and I are much like oil and water. After getting back from Indiana it literally took me two weeks to get back in any kind of domestic groove. Instead I started sending out my resume...I'm much better at the career I get paid for. But that being said, let's focus on progress not perfection shall we? Here's what I've got planned for this week:

Monday: PB & J crepes
Tuesday: Tuna cakes, some veggie or two, and some fruit (strawberries)
Wednesday: Chicken quesadillas, salad, chips and guacamole
Thursday: Leftovers
Friday: Pizza Night
Saturday: God help me if I actually make it til then!

The professor's semester ends this week and God willing he may take over this duty for the Summer. In an effort to maintain my dignity though, I really should continue this one homage to domesticity, don't cha' think?

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Did We Survive the "Turnoff Challenge"?

At Unplug Your Kids the challenge was issued and we made the foolhardy to decision to accept. I say foolhardy because how was I to know my back would decide to go out on me only one day later. Ugh. Now this meant no computer time for me. But I did watch more television than planned because I was flat on my back on the couch or bed for a good two days. But we did manage to cut down on our television and computer consumption significantly. Here are some of the things we did instead:

  • The kids discovered that magnolia trees are very easy to climb. I spent most of my time yelling "that's high enough"...
  • Painting Imagination boxes. Both the kids were wild about this craft project. Check out Later Betty's Bargains for a review and giveaway.
  • Lots of chalk drawings and hopscotch tournaments
  • Baseball games
  • Board game night
  • Spring Fairy house construction was in full tilt. We gathered the materials one day and built it another day. Look soon for a post dedicated to this activity. When we built a Fall Fairy House last Fall I contacted Light-Beams Publishing to let them know how much their Fairy House Series and website contributed to our kids' (and grown ups') imagination and creativity.
Well, when Light-Beams Publishing read about Unplug Your Kids Blog Challenge, they contacted me. They want to reward those who were participating in this challenge with the book, Fairy Houses by Tracy Kane. With great generosity, Light-Beams Publishing is offering three copies of this book to those who participated in the challenge. So if you would like an opportunity to win one of three copies here's what you have to do:

  1. Show me some Mr. Linky love and give me a link to your post in the Mr. Linky widget below or to those who participated by e-mail if you e-mailed uplugged mom and she publishes what you did, a link to that in the comment section is also fine. In addition I need a way to contact you if you are chosen so make sure I have access to an e-mail addy one way or another. This giveaway closes on May 5th at midnight est. I will announce the winners (that's right there's three books!) on May 6th. It is open worldwide (even though I'm paying for the shipping!).
After doing the required entry, here are ways to gain additional entries:
  1. Follow me or subscribe to my feed (leave a comment that you did)
  2. Click the "Tell a Friend" button at the end of the post and tweet about this (with a rt@laterbetty) plus follow me on Twitter. Then leave a comment with your user name and if you tweeted.
  3. Click the "Tell a Friend" button at the end of the post, choose another social network (our favorites are technorati, kirtsy, stumble upon) and show some love. Then leave a comment with what you did.
  4. Leave a relevant comment on my Fall Fairy House post and comment back here that you did.
  5. The big one worth 5 entries: Build a Fairy House and blog about it; leave a comment with the link.
I look forward to seeing what everyone else did or didn't do last week!

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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Spring Break Hoosier Style...Part Deux...

Easter eggs // OstereierImage via Wikipedia

As I said, we were up for it. Up for what? An Easter Egg hunt, of course. Now, I feel the need to give you a little background for those who don't know how much I abhor egg hunts. I have always choked under the pressure of the hunt. I have a competitive spirit and it usually serves me well. But when it comes to Easter egg hunts I suck. Plus, now that I'm a mom I live empathetically through those little ones who come back basket empty because some quick little sucker was faster then they were. So I suggested the color coded system last year and my dear families got on board. Each child is assigned a color before the hunt and that is the only color they look for. It's a fabulous cooperative event if I say so myself. The bigger kids end up helping the littler ones instead of yanking an egg out of their sweet hands. This year Grandma Cece in addition to the colored eggs hid foiled wrapped eggs (4 per hunter). They looked like baked potatoes but they had money in them instead of sour cream and butter. I myself never participated in such a hunt just your basic jelly beans and peeps were hidden inside my eggs - what few I found that is. Gavin ended up with $35 and Anna $8! I'd say the Easter Bunny was quite generous this year given the economy and all.

The Kiley Cousins had a great time together. Lots of noise ensued after the hunt along with general mayhem. Cousining is a loud activity. The pictures don't do the noise justice. In fact, the pictures (thanks to Aunt Laurie who got some great shots) could imply some idyllic childhood scene instead of the pure chaos that it really was.

Kiley cousins' Easter

The Gallagher Cousins' Easter extravaganza was at Uncle Sean and Aunt Cindy's house. Missing was Papa Tom who was in the hospital fighting an E. coli infection courtesy of his earlier prostate cancer treatment. Everyone had fun but all the adults were keenly aware of his missing presence. It was so good to have our Family Easter at Sean and Cindy's so we could be close to the hospital and take turns visiting. And as always, Sean was able to capture the essence of joy in his photographs. Grandma was a trooper and the Easter Bunny, once again, made Easter a special memory for the cousins.

Gallagher Cousins' Easter

Easter was a small part of our visit though. I think we broke the record for the number of people visited in the short amount of time. So there is a part trois. Okay, no heavy sighs! I promise no more after that one...really.

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring Break Hoosier Style...Part 1

Now that we're back and I'm certain no law enforcement officers are going to be showing up at my door any moment, I thought I'd share how things went. Unlike Patrick, I'm not a morning person, so mama didn't leave at four in the morning when the kids are sure to sleep for hours before they wake up somewhere in North Carolina. Oh no, I left at the sane hour of six a.m. (please acknowledge sarcasm when you read it...6 a.m. is not sane in any way) thinking they'd still be sleepy enough to knock off. But the cruel joke was played on me. This was because these kids were wide awake like daddy had secretly fed them double shots of espresso before plopping them in their booster seats and waving buh-bye to momma. Oh yeah. Not only were they wide awake in the car the minute I backed out of the drive way but they managed to start arguing by the time I pulled onto the highway. In the first fifty miles I had to pull the car over two times threatening many things that I could have never followed through with. Thank God I didn't have to blow my own cover! I think the fact that I was willing to pull the car over on the highway not once but twice in less than a hour put the fear of Mama in them. They both got very quiet....wide awake but quiet. Peace ensued. If that had not occurred it goes without saying that felonies would have.

The sun rose and we had a, cough-cough, nutritious breakfast while I continued driving. After ingesting enough carbs to put down an elephant there was serious napping in the back seat of our little Honda Civic . And, being the good safe Mama that I am I took a picture of them while driving. Yeah, that's right, get the award polished for me!
Being from "back in the day" I just gotta say, I love digital cameras! Thanks to them I know I captured the perfect picture without sacrificing anyone's life. Thank you Sony.

After lunch at a playland, I surprised them with the portable DVD player a dear friend had let me borrow for the road trip. It saved the afternoon. You see, there it is again, technology saving our lives. When we travelled as kids we didn't have anything like that to entertain us. We had to, oh - I don't know - read? Please that is so 70's. So I'm driving along and this RV passes me. Now it's not everyday I grab my camera to take a picture of an RV. But it's not every day you see the Blessed Mother airbrushed on the back of one either. Sweet ride, huh?


You'll have to take my word for it that it is Her (after all these years, I'm still capitalizing). I may have risked life and limb to get any closer to that enormous moving vehicle. This sighting came shortly after passing the twenty story high giant cross right next to the Adult XXX Store. I couldn't get a picture of that but jazer at flikr had...

He couldn't capture both in one shot, but imagine the people in the back seat looking back and saying something like, "Oh, man, I can sin and be saved in one exit!". That's how close they are to each other.

Somewhere in Kentucky the kids decided they had had enough of technology. We started actually talking to one another, singing crazy songs, and getting excited about being so close to seeing our family and friends that we had been missing something awful for what seemed too long. We were giddy.


And I've got the picture to prove it once again. Yes, we survived this one too. I have to say no more picture taking while driving occurred after this. So calm down grandparents and husband. We're all safe but not so sound at home now.

But, I did talk on the cell phone every now and then. Hey, a girl's gotta do something in that ten hour drive! I only talked on it while driving if someone called me though. Aunt Laurie called to see if we were ready for an Easter egg hunt in about two hours (we were about two hours away from their house). Hey, running around looking for plastic eggs filled with candy after being stuck in car for ten hours is a great way to stretch those muscles don't cha' think? We were up for it....

...continued in part duex.
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Monday, April 20, 2009

National Turnoff Week Challenge!

April 20th through the 26th is Turnoff Week (formerly TV Turnoff Week, but now it applies to all “screens”). Given that cable entered our little house when we moved to the little town and that my daily connection to friends and family seems to be the computer, we've decided to take this challenge on. At the blog, Unplug Your Kids, she is taking this to a whole...'nother...level by issuing her 3rd annual Turnoff Week blog challenge. Any blogger interested in accepting the challenge signs up at her blog, blogs about the challenge and any updates they might want to add, and then reports on the results -the good, the bad, and the ugly (and you know there's gonna be some ugly in my house!).

So what are we going to do with our time? Play more...craft more...hopefully. Any suggestions? Ideas? Would love to have some for both grown ups and kids.
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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Wordless Wednesday, 04-15-09

Gav and baseball...he's at home there.
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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Dumpster Diving Clinton Style!

While I was out last night doing our bit for Mother Earth by recycling at Clinton's less than stellar recycling area I came across this little treasure in the metal recylcing bins.


I heard it whisper, "Save me, Kelly. I don't deserve this fate!". So I reached in there and rescued Miss Apple Tin from becoming a can or two of green beans. One woman's trash is another one's treasure. The Thrifty Chicks would be so proud of me!
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Wednesday, April 1, 2009