Sunday, November 30, 2008

I survived: 20 Turkeys, Black Friday, and the FLU!

What a week! At least it was a short work-week, which is always fun! Still no news on the job search, but my boss did say that I can stay on my current group's roster until the end of March, so that gives me a little more time to find something else. But still....I HATE being in limbo. HATE IT! At least I know I still have a job, and for that I'm thankful!

And speaking of being thankful......I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! I was BUSY! and I mean BUSY! Karl and I both left work early to see the kids' thanksgiving program....Matthew was in the front row and got a sudden case of stage fright, so I thought for sure he'd clam up and not sing....but he did sing, just not loud enough for me to hear (and I was sitting in the front row!). He was so cute though!

Alaina's class did a little play about pilgrims and native americans.....I never read the script, choosing instead to be surprised during the actual play. I wish I'd read it now so I could've understood what the heck was going on! She insisted on wearing a dress, so she was looking a little more 'formal' than all her classmates, but oh well....that's my girly girl!

As soon as the program was over, we loaded up the van and headed to Fairfield to help my mom cook lots and lots and LOTS of thanksgiving dinners! We went out for chinese for dinner just to take a break from the turkey and such.....then mom and I went back up to the restaurant and were joined eventually by my SIL Stacy......the 3 of us were up there 'till past midnight getting stuff ready for the next day. We were exhausted. And what happens when I get totally run down? I get sick. So sure enough, Thanksgiving morning, I woke up sick. But there was no time to be sick! I got up and headed back out to help mom.

I THINK we served about 300 people on Thanksgiving day. It was a total blur to me! Nonstop cooking all morning long! We didn't run out of anything and there weren't any terrible accidents....I've got a few cuts and a few burns, but nothing serious. I burned my leg taking a turkey out of the oven.....there was a lot more broth in the pan than I thought there was, and the disposable pan buckled and I ended up getting doused with a lot of turkey broth straight from the oven! Ouch. that hurt! Thankfully the day was fairly short, and when the last meal went out the door at 1PM, we got to sit down and have our own dinner!

After lunch I was feeling worse, so I went back to my parents' house for a nap....which I never really got since the house is small and there were lots of people crammed into it! That night, I was kinda out of it from being sick, so all we really did was comb through the walmart ad so we could prepare for our black friday jaunt!

So Friday morning....Karl and I were up at 4:15AM. ridiculous, I know! We got to Walmart around 4:45 and it was packed full of people! And I mean PACKED! I think everybody in Fairfield (and the surrounding towns!) was there! We split up to make sure we were 'positioned correctly' to get the stuff we wanted. Karl went to electronics for some games, and I parked in front of the DVDs. I got yelled at twice by an employee for "peeking" through the plastic to see what was what.....whatever REALLY going to kick me out 5 minutes before the biggest shopping day of the year? yeah, i didn't think so!

We were quite successful with our shopping.....we got everything we wanted except for one tiny thing, and it wasn't even a 'necessity' really, so I'm not too upset about that. We stood in line FOREVER to check out.....and even after all that, it was still only 6:30AM! So we went to McDonald's for some breakfast, took some food home for everybody else.....and I climbed back into bed! The morning person (karl) didn't. The rest of Friday was spent just hanging out with Karl, Stacy, and the kids. I was feeling quite yucky, so I didn't feel like doing much of anything. I might've scrapped one page, but I didn't even feel like scrappin', so you KNOW I felt bad!

Friday evening, after dinner, we left for home.....Alaina said at dinner that she wasn't feeling very she didn't eat much of anything at dinner.......we got maybe 5 miles out of town and she pukes all over the place in the van. lovely! so we stripped her by the side of the road and put her PJs on her vs. making her wear puke clothes for the 2 1/2 hour ride I was sick....Alaina was obviously sick......and Zach's been fighting a cold for several days. FUN ride home! We got home around 10 I think.....we got Alaina in the shower and then we all crashed.

Saturday, I don't remember much of the morning.....Karl had left early to help Dean fix their bathroom......I was still feeling lousy, so the kids were up way before me......Matthew finally came in and woke me up 'cuz he was hungry. I spent the day working on the craft for the 'hanging of the green' service that was going to be the next day at church. I made the original and then traced out all the pieces onto felt (very sick of felt right now!) parents showed up after lunch and I put them to work cutting out pieces! so the craft project was done, and I think it turned out pretty cute........but I can't believe I didn't take a picture of it! that right there shows ya how out of it i was with the sickies!

After dinner Saturday night, mom and I decided to go to walmart so i could show her stuff to get the kids for christmas....and while we were there....I got worse. MUCH worse. The stomach flu hit. That was the longest shopping trip of my life! I got home from that and went straight to bed. And I've basically been sick ever since. I'm just NOW (about 24 hours later) feeling human again.
This morning was the first snowfall of the year, so the kids went out to play in it of course. i took some pictures and went back to bed....still feeling crummy. I had wanted to get our tree put up today, but that didn't happen. I didn't go to church either....I spent most of the day in bed. Thankfully my mom was here to help with the kids! Tonight was the hanging of the green service at church, and i probably should've stayed home, but I went to direct the craft i'd designed......and felt lousy most of the evening. and now i'm home again......still not feeling too great but at least now it's more of just the headcold I had on thursday/friday than the flu that i had yesterday. oh the fun never ends!!! so taht was my sickly holiday weekend! BAH!

So I'm running out of here's what i've scrapped lately:

Here's our trip to the Arch...made with the Primary Grunge kit that Vicki designed for yours huh?

And this one is of the kids when they built "santa's sleigh" out of a table, a chair, and a rocking horse in the basement......I posted the picture before, but here's the layout (using Vicki's Bright Christmas kit)

And this is from just this morning....I'm really shocked I got this one done! It's using a template from Sya's Grab bag she released on Black Friday......and using Vicki's Winter Wonderland kit that she'll be releasing soon (I might be posting it early for her kit, if so, sorry Vicki!)

And here's my blessing for the Uncle Bill and Aunt Lill. Uncle Bill is the only uncle I have (aside from the husbands of aunts, but you know what I mean)....he's my dad's brother and the live in Florida, but they've been up here visiting for the last month or so and they spent Thanksgiving with us. I remember going to their house as a kid for our vacation and going out on their sailboat and them taking us to the beach......

so that's it for now....heading off to bed now since I need the rest and don't have any sick days to use! bah! :(

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Some home remodeling....and TWILIGHT! :)

Well, no crazy-girl concert antics to share this week! For the most part, it was fairly typical here at our house. Took the kids to their activities and on Wednesday I had a job interview (which went OKAY, but I decided about half an hour into the interview that I do NOT want that job, so I'm not caring much if I get a call-back on it!). Keep your fingers crossed for me though! I'm running out of time here!!! :(

Last Sunday at church, we were given a "talent" (choice of a bunch of weird gifts....books, candy....Karl and I both chose cake mixes) and we were supposed to report back next week (ie today) with how we 'shared our talent'......the kids picked candy and either ate it right there during the service or shared it with people sitting next to them in church. So their "assignments" were done. I made a gooey butter cake (YUM!) with my cake mix and took it to work for a fellow refugee coworker (another unlucky soul who was being reassigned)'s last day. So I shared mine with my coworkers....and they inhaled it quite quickly, being the gluttonous engineers they are......Karl intended to make his cake "himself" (I was ready to see this!), and take it to some friends of ours that had been sick for awhile.....what happened instead was a double-date night to see Twilight!

So Karl didn't end up making his cake, but we coordinated schedules with Andy and Melissa for Friday night to go see Twilight. Melissa and I had both read all the books....the guys were just along for the ride. We had a great time. We went out to dinner at the mall and ANYTIME we go to this particular mall, we get bombarded with "Hey Mr. Herman!" we ALWAYS run into a bunch of Karl's students. This night was no exception. Karl said he could even tell during the movie which kids were screaming and whispering because he hears them whisper all the time in class! And of course all his students had to ask him what he thought of the movie afterwards too...... Andy swears that the best part was hearing all the girls squeal everytime Rob Pattinson came on the screen (I might've been doing some of that squealing too actually....*sigh*!) But all in all, it was a pretty good movie. Team Edward all the way! We hadn't been out on a date since our anniversary so it was nice to just get out of the house and leave the kids behind for some grown-up conversation with some was a fun night!

The only other thing we had happen of any note this week was Karl FINALLY finished the upstairs hallway...YAY! So now it's complete:

We ripped up all the carpeting and put down laminate wood flooring on our stairs and hallway (to match the living room and kitchen). I'd been wanting to do this FOREVER....and we finally did it as a Christmas present to ourselves. So Merry Christmas to us!

Oh, and I gotta post this picture since it just cracks me up....please ignore the horribly messy house in the background....but look what the kids did:

They made "Santa's Sleigh" (complete with a reindeer rocking horse!) Isn't that the funniest thing ever? :P Why do we buy them toys again??

Yesterday, Matthew was invited to a swimming party for one of his classmate's that was the excitement of the day. He and Alaina had lessons in the morning anyways, so it was double-swimming day for Matthew, and he was SOOOO excited! Even if the party was for a GIRL! He had a blast! And I'm leaning toward renting the place for Alaina's party in March....the kids were having so much fun!!! Pool party, anyone???

And I really can't think of anything else that happened this week worth mentioning......we're getting ready for Thanksgiving just like everybody else! I feel wierd though, 'cuz I haven't been cooking anything, as it's all at my mom's and we're cooking everything there. I just feel wierd not even buying any of the traditional "stuff"! Alaina/Matthew's classes have a Thanksgiving program at school on Wednesday, so Karl and I are cutting out of work early to see that. Then we're off to Fairfield to help my mom fill all her catering orders.....then we plan to come back home sometime on depends on whether we get up early for any after-Thanksgiving sales or not! Then we'll probably spend the weekend getting out Christmas decorations and getting our house ready for the holidays......maybe I'll work on Christmas cards!

So that's the update on us......and here's what I've scrapped this week:

The New Kids on the Block concert.....*sigh*......good times, good times!!!

This is probably my last layout from our last Disney trip.....I'm finally done scrapping it! Only took me 11 months! This is Alaina's first ride on the Tower of Terror.....she was so freaked out, I loved it! It's a great ride though...LOVE IT!

And this one is with Vicki's new kit she'll be releasing tomorrow, called "True Blue"'s so I can memorialize some of the oddball things Matthew asks. He's been on a "God kick" lately, asking me all these questions about God......'does God have a Wii?', 'does God have to eat salad?', 'Who made God?'.....just funny I started writing it all down so I could remember it all. Alaina was never this inquisitive, so some of his questions have thrown me for a loop, like, "How can God hear everybody's prayers?'......uhm......go ask your dad! :P I love that he's asking's funny to see kids' minds working like that, ya know? So here's Matthew and all his questions:

This is of Zach helping with the offering a few Sundays ago when we were at Brush Creek.....Chuck Knapp had taken up the money and Zach didn't like him putting it into the bank deposit bag, so Zach took it all back out and put it back into the offering plates! Then Chuck had Zach help him "count" it into his kept him occupied during the service! So I told Karl all we need to keep Zach quiet is a big stack of cash! No problem!

And lastly, my blessing for the week.........this has been on my "list" of blessings since I first considered this project, and I'm just now getting around to scrapping it: Brush Creek. Since I was up there not too long ago, I had the chance to take some current's such a special place to those of us that have had the opportunity to spend time there, it was a total no-brainer for a blessing:

Journaling reads: "There aren’t enough words to describe how special Brush Creek is to me.Not only is it part of my family heritage, but it is the site of some of my fondest memories of my life. As a child, my family spent two weeks every summer at church reunions held here. It was sometimes the only‘vacation’ my family took. Us kids went to classes and made friends that have become lifelong friends. We attended the nightly services in the auditorium, and until the lodge was built, we spent the weeklong reunion in a cabin. Once they built the lodge next to the dining hall, we spent our weeks there. I learned how to canoe and swim in this lake, and my brothers spent many hours fishing here. I sang in the choir and stayed up late when I was a teenager talking with my friends. I went to camps aside from reunion, both as a camper,and then when I was old enough, as a counselor, working alongside my camp friends. Brush Creek represents the best of my childhood, the foundation of my character, and a place that is and hopefully always will be there for me to return to. It is a refuge from a hectic life and to anyone that has ever been there: a true blessing."

so that's it for me....Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Junior High love conquers all! :)

Ahhhh.......come loved the New Kids on the Block too! Admit it! In Junior high, I got into probably the most trouble I ever did in my youth by attending their concert at Roberts Stadium in Evansville, Indiana! My parents weren't at home when my BF Gina called and said, "my aunt's offered to take us over there, so if you want to go, we need to know NOW so we can order tickets before they sell out!" well DUH....what's ANY 14-year old girl going to say? HECK YES GET ME A TICKET! :P So when the parentals came home, I told them they owed Gina's aunt $35 (a FORTUNE in those days) for a ticket to a concert I didn't ask permission to go to. Oh the grounding that followed was TOTALLY WORTH IT! :P I had a blast at that concert, in the worst seats (literally, the back row....i thought for sure i was going to plummet 30 feet to my death off those risers!), but it was major fun. And I assumed that'd be my first and last New Kids experience......until this past Monday night!

So Monday, I'm at work waiting for 'the call' from my SIL and her BFF Emily that they were in town so I could bug out and hang with them. Then I ended up getting called into a last-minute meeting and ended up not being able to leave a minute earlier than usual. BAH! But, since I"m hoping for a JOB from this particular manager, I figured I'd better not bail and say, "I gotta go up in the arch with my friends that're ditching work!"......might not make the best impression, huh? But I left work around 3 and headed downtown to meet up with Nicole and Emily.

Our first stop was the arch. Since Karl is deathly afraid of heights and there's no way in hades I'd EVER get him up in this thing (and Karl's brother Kurt is the exact same way, so Nicole feels my pain), we thought this would be the perfect opportunity to go up in the arch. So we took some outside pics of us and the arch and then headed inside to get our tickets. Then we got into our little 'pod' for the ride up to the top. Now I'm not claustrophobic by any means, but I can see that if anybody WAS, this would be an issue:

Me, Nicole, and the Gateway Arch:

how tiny the pods actually are:

squished together for the 'pod ride' to the top:

While at the top, we looked out over the lovely overcast city of St. Louis.

Then we had to do the ride back down. Emily wasn't too thrilled about the ride, but Nicole and I just took pictures of her all freaked out and laughed. We're so nice. :P

Then we headed to their hotel room and changed into our 'concert garb' ......then decided to go ahead and park my car at the Scottrade Center and walk to dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe at Union Station. We had to wait about an hour for our table since the entire downtown was packed with 30-something women in groups reliving their junior high years just like us. We didn't go as far reminiscing as others did with the legwarmers, crimped hair, and old concert t-shirts. But it sure was fun crowd watching all the other NKOTB fans!
Don't we look cute though?

After dinner, we made a quick stop at the car to drop off some stuff we'd bought at Union Station and then headed inside to the concert. Natasha Beddingfield was the opening act, and none of us really cared about missing out on we hit the souvie stands to make sure we all got our proper tshirts! Nicole and I got the "Property of Donnie Walhberg" shirts, and Emily got a pink concert tour one. Life is good!

The concert itself was so much fun! Granted, Madonna put on a better show, but these guys were so much more FUN! We were on our feet almost the entire time, screaming, singing, and yelling. And I must say, these guys have aged quite gracefully:

"Please Don't Go Girl"!!! *sigh*.......

*SWOON*!!! I can understand how they ended up with half a dozen pairs of panties on the stage! :P I stole those closeups from the while I didn't take them, they were from our concert at least! I took over 400 pics with the big camera that I managed to sneak do you sneak in a camera in the summertime I wonder? Hooray for big bulky coats, I say! :P Here's the view from OUR seats:

Still not too bad! so we had a GREAT time reliving our youth at the NKOTB concert! Look how much fun we're having:

Tuesday, thanks to getting home at 1AM from the concert and having "a few" drinks, I called in sick. :P The rest of the week was uneventful after that. I was kinda sick for most of it (unrelated to any margarita consumption!). Did the usual of running the kids to their activities and such.....

Saturday, we took the kids to their swimming lessons, had lunch at arby's, then after naps we had our family portraits taken at Sears. I'm always leery of pictures and Zach. He's 2. He doesn't cooperate! BUT this time he DID! YAY! I'm still in shock and everybody on our Christmas card list will be getting a lovely portrait of the kids all dressed up and smiley! Which just reminds me that I've done NO shopping...haven't started my Christmas letter...and am otherwise all-around totally unprepared for the approaching holidays!!! *sigh*....time to get with it!

So that was our onto the layouts I've done. I did a lot less scrapping than normal thanks to having that nasty heady cold most of the week. These first two are of the kids' school pictures, using Sya's new templates she released a few days ago....they both took really good school pics this year, I was impressed!

Then I did another one from our UK trip......gotta love Big Ben!

And of Matthew's soccer portraits:

And this was our dinner at the Hard Rock Monday night:

This week's family heritage as it concerns the Caudle Schoolhouse at Brush Creek. It's the ONLY claim to fame my family has, so I gotta work with it!
Journaling reads: My family doesn’t have any sort of claim to fame, but the one thing that we are all very proud of is the history of the Caudle schoolhouse. My Great-great grandfather Samuel Caudle gave to the church the land that later would become the Brush Creek Campground. The schoolhouse for the neighborhood was also on his land, and it was in this little log schoolhouse that the Brush Creek branch of our church began. It is the oldest congregation in the area, and the only congregation that never was disorganized after the death of Joseph Smith. So the Caudle schoolhouse holds a special place in the hearts of the church members in the area for the history that it represents. I am so proud and blessed for the part myo wn family played in all of this history.This is my Family Heritage.
And that's it for me. Matthew wants to watch Speed Racer again (we rented it last night....worst movie EVER! kids have no taste I swear!), but laundry and a very messy daughter's room are calling my until next post, have a good one!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sicky post...

I'm still feeling yucky. YUCKY! I've been fighting this head cold thing for DAYS now and I thought for sure I'd be on the downward side of it and starting to feel better, but alas.....not so much! At first it was mostly the coughing-at-bedtime-so-you-get-no-sleep thing, but now it's a full-blown head cold, complete with accompanying stuffiness and misery. bah!

Our weekend has been okay. We intended to stay home, but somehow we ended up here in Fairfield, visiting with my parents. Friday night we just hung out at home....watching TV and doing not much of anything. it was nice to be lazy, especially since i felt crummy. oh, and we bought a movie off we all watched 'Journey to the center of the Earth'......not bad. The kids liked the dinosaurs and the other strange animals. I'm thinking I should read that book one of these days! So that was Friday.

Saturday, I had to go to the dentist, which is always fun. Note to self: don't break a crown and you won't have to have it replaced! :P Thankfully I'd gone through all the miserable parts, so this was a quick visit.....Karl got to take all the kids to swimming lessons in Alton. As soon as I was done, I went down there to meet them. It was so hot in the swimming pool area, we abandoned our seats for the comfort of the lobby and played out there with Zach and then Matthew and Zach once Alaina's class started. After swimming, we went to Steak N Shake for lunch, as cheesy fries are a Herman 5th food group! After a yummy lunch (milkshakes and cheese healthy!) we went to the mall for a little retail therapy for me.

I had a crummy week. CRUMMY. I'm past the initial shock of the whole reassignment thing at work and now I've moved on to the hurt/bitterness stage. BUT, I've decided to just do what I can to find a job in another department. I've applied for 8 openings already, and my boss said she'd contact the hiring managers for me. So I'm fairly optimistic about finding another job before January. What I'm afraid of is not liking where I end up. I've been in departments where there's nobody under the age of 40 and everybody has a chip on their shoulder about something. *sigh*.....I'm going to really miss the guys I work with now. So pray for me, friends! Say a quick prayer that I land on my feet in a fun group where I'm not stuck mucking through paperwork for the Department of Defense....BAH!

oh, and while I'm asking for prayers, keep my SIL Stacy in mind as well.....she had an even worse week than moi, as she found out Wednesday that she was fired. No severance, and the boss is probably going to fight her on drawing unemployment. BOO! :*( So if anybody has any leads for a graphic designer to find a job quick-like in St. Louis, let me know! What a way to start off the holiday season, huh?

So anyways, back to my retail therapy. Karl, my fashion-conscious hubby, had a coupon to Macy's, so we hit their sales. I wanted a dress for Christmas for me and for Alaina. I'd found the boys matching sweater-vest outfits at Target, so I was hoping for something to match/compliment their outfits (since I always like to TRY to match for pictures).......I didn't find any dresses I liked since I already have 4 black dresses, and seriously, how many more black dresses does a gal need? I didn't want black! But I did find a skirt and a sweater I liked, so I got those.....then we went to the girls' section and Alaina went nuts........and I gotta hand it to the marketing geniuses here.....they definitely pulled one over on the parents this time...

In the girls' section, they had some dresses on this one rack (which of course was more expensive than others) that had a matching American Girl doll dress attached to it. Seriously, how smart is that? The INSTANT Alaina saw those matching doll dresses, she was sold. Forget all the other frilly/sparkly dresses on the next rack....she HAD to have a dress that had a matching one for her doll. HAD TO. And I'm a sucker for giving my daughter what she wants, and Karl's an even bigger sucker, so she got the dress...........she's ecstatic.

Then we had to head to another store at the mall to continue the quest for a dress for me. I didn't want black.....I didn't want red. For holiday dresses, that eliminated 99% of the choices! Sheesh! I must be the oddball that doesn't want a red dress at Christmas! I found a blue one, tried it on, and that's the one i got. So now our family won't really MATCH, but we won't look completely stupid. I hope.

oh, funny sidestory from our trip to the mall.....I was either still browsing the racks or dealing with the kids, 'cuz Karl was doing the paying (I tend to chicken out when totals come across the screen and put everything back....Karl, however, just pays the bill......he's good to take shopping for that exact reason!)......and halfway through the checkout procedure, the cashier looks at him and says, "your name is Karl Herman?"...and Karl's like, 'yes....'.......and she started freaking out saying, "Oh My God, this is SO WIERD!" the register right next to Karl was another guy making a purchase, and his name was Herman Karl. Yeah. The irony confounds the mind, doesn't it? So Karl Herman went over and introduced himself to Herman Karl.......everybody found it ridiculously funny.........when Karl told me later on what had happened, I just started humming the theme to "it's a small world".........

oh, and we also went to another store in the mall where I bought more clothes I really didn't NEED....but I got a couple cute tops, one of which I'll be wearing to the New Kids on the Block concert tomorrow night........yes, that's new top will TOTALLY catch the attention of my longtime crush, DONNIE WAHLBERG! OH YEAH! I got a couple new pairs of jeans and a pair of pants for work....and then decided that since I don't absolutely, positively have a job after the end of the year, I should probably curtain the unecessary spending for one day! :P

After my shopping spree, we headed home....and having talked off and on all day about it, decided to drive out to Fairfield to visit my parents. Saturday night was the congregation's annual Turkey Supper, so that was one reason to come out and visit........the other reason was that the following day, Sunday, was going to be a special service up at Brush Creek for my uncle Bill and aunt Lill Caudle. And we kinda thought we should be there for it. So after quickly packing, we headed off to Fairfield.

We got into town to catch the tail end of the turkey supper, so our dinner was turkey and all the trimmings...the kids weren't thrilled except for the pumpkin pie! then we went back to my parents' house and hung out. I sent Karl to walmart (which happens every time we visit since I ALWAYS forget SOMETHING) for cold meds and pantyhose......we just hung out here and talked with my parents. We stayed up pretty late talking and then everybody went to bed.....Zach didn't sleep much...he kept hollering for me in the night (all 3 of them were in the living room on the sleeper sofa....the arrangement didn't work out so well), so I think I got up probably 5 or 6 times to deal with I basically got zero sleep!

This morning, we had to carefully orchestrate bathroom time, as my parents new house only has 1 bathroom! Once we were all ready, we loaded up and headed to Brush Creek for services. Gosh I miss going to Brush Creek more often! I'm really thinking we should try to make it up there for reunion this summer......cross your fingers I get a cool boss so it's a possibility! We had our service to honor uncle Bill and aunt Lill....then they had potluck afterwards. I met a few relatives I didn't recognize....saw a few cousins I don't ever get to see....introduced my kids to some kids of cousins (which would make them something insane like 6th or 7th cousins I think if we did the math).......The kids went and ran off outside to play on the playground they just was FREEZING outside, so I'm sure they'll all be sick by morning! I went outside and took some pictures of the campground since I haven't been up there in awhile....adn I don't recall ever taking pictures in the fall of the lake, etc. Then we headed back here to hang out again at my parents' house. They're sitting around now talking, and I'm sitting here blogging........we're going to order some pizza for dinner and then we'll head home. uncle bill and aunt lill are supposed to show up for my grand plans for getting the hallway floor done ain't happening this weekend at all! But that's okay, we've had a fun weekend anyways.

And now, lemme see what pages I've done this week for posting.....

Here's Matthew's Halloween costume and class party one.....made using one of Sya's new templates, from her November Grab bag. He was Darth Vader, obviously:

And Alaina was a Pirate Princess....

And this is of the kids trick or treating... with another of Sya's templates:

The other day, everybody was outside while I was in the kitchen and I heard Karl laughing and hollering at me to "come look at this!".....I went into the garage and found Matthew underneath one of the Power Wheels pretending to work on it like a mechanic.....

And this is in honor of Napoleon Dynamite......Karl convinced Matthew to take a 'sweet jump' with his bike......the first one, which was pretty low, wasn't too hard and he did just fine....then Karl raised the ramp up a little higher....and the result was pretty disastrous, just like in the film! And us rotten parents were laughing ourselves silly....Karl had the video camera going and I was taking pictures.......Matthew's on the ground crying and we're laughing. We're such rotten parents sometimes, but GOSH that was FUNNY! This was again with one of Sya's templates from her November grab bag:

These last two are from our UK trip this past summer....I'm nowhere near done scrapping this, but I hadn't done any pages in awhile, and I decided to go through Mrs. Pohlman's pictures that she'd taken and given us copies of....and I came across this one of me and Karl in our wool hats that we bought in Blarney (I'm thinking I'll be wearing my hat this week as it's turned FREEZING here overnight it seems!)....this is using one of Sya's older templates ("the chosen one") and Vicki's new kit, "Enchanted Forest".....I'm trying to multitask my CT duties here! :P

And this is of the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. We didn't go to the 'main' area where they do the big dog and pony show....this was at some side entrance. I'm glad we weren't late, 'cuz the whole thing was over in like 5 mintues! It was neat to see though....they're very regimented, as all military are......the kids just loved those "fuzzy hats"!!! I used Sya's template "Totally square" for this one, but moved stuff around so much I dunno how much it resembles the original anymore!

And lastly my blessing for the honor of what has transpired this week....I chose my right to vote as my blessing. I did this layout before the election results were known, as I didn't want my journaling to be skewed with who ended up winning....and I was nice and gave equal space (well, almost equal) to the McCain/Palin logo even.....but's the RIGHT to vote that was the blessing....not who was running!

Journaling: "Today we make History... I’m blessed to be an American. I’m priviledged to have the right to have my voice heard at each election I choose to participate in. Voting is important, and this year it’s more important thanever. This year we have the opportunity to be a part of history. We will elect either the first African-American President, or the first female Vice President. That is huge for our country, and I’m so happy to have a part in the whole process. My great-grandmother never had the right to vote...I do. So in her honor and for all the women who wanted to vote but were never allowed....and for all the soldiers who have died to defend our freedom to vote...and for my children who will live with the consequences of my vote, I voted today. I made my choice and my voice was heard."
so that's it for now....hope everybody had a great weekend.....I'm off to find some more cough drops! Tomorrow night, it's NKOTB in St. Louis! My SIL Nicole and her friend Emily are headed down and we're going to have a tug-of-war over the rights to swoon over Donnie! We all went to the Madonna concert together up in Chicago a couple weeks ago and had a great time, so tomorrow night should be fun! Can't wait! If I manage to sneak a camera in, I'll post pics in a few days.......TTYL!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Good News and Bad News

the Good News: Barack Obama is our President-elect! YAY! My brother owes me $50 for this little piece of history per our bet from many many months ago.......the bet was over which we'd see first: An African-American MAN be President, or a White FEMALE......and I told him that the glass ceiling is still firmly in place and I took the former position, and looky what we have now! So pay up, Deano! :P I voted, bright and early, on Tuesday morning, and even at our tiny polling place the line was abnormally long. And we got those fancy schmancy new optical scanners........but what about CHAD? Oh I'll miss you, my friend the 'hanging chad'......before the 2000 election, who even knew those little bits of paper had a NAME, right? So anyways, it was a very amazing day....I spent the night online seeing friends comment on our Facebook pages.....refreshing CNN (even though the TV was tuned to it 6 feet away)......and was shocked at how 'not-even-close' the race ended up being. Now.......let's go change the country, shall we? Yes We Can!

now....the Bad News: I got the news Monday morning (as to "not ruin your weekend" per my manager, gee thanks) that as of Jan. 1, '09, I am being "reassigned" in "you're kicked out of our group, go find another job"......well, maybe that's not exactly what it means. But since the funding for my project was cut, they decided to cut me too. Ouch. I wasn't expecting this at all, since I didn't have a 'project' at this same time last year either, but they managed to find something for me to do all of THIS year....I just assumed the same thing would happen again. But that's not the way they're going. So as of the end of the year, I'll no longer be working in Phantom Works. *sniff* I'm really bummed about that. Phantom Works has a certain clout, ya know?

Don't freak out or anything....I still have a JOB.......SOMEWHERE......I just don't know WHERE yet. According to my boss, she will be working with another manager to find me an opening with another department. I'm a little bitter about the whole thing right now, as I'm feeling like I'm some sort of leper that they're trying to forget that wierd relative you want to disown in public......know what I mean? So anyways, I've applied for every job opening I've seen internally that I'm qualified for....and a few that I'm NOT qualified for. As long as I'm still getting a paycheck, I guess I'm content for now. I just don't like being in limbo. I went through this once before on another program, and the process stunk then too. So as of now, I feel homeless, so to speak. I will miss my coworkers horribly....we've become a pretty tight-knit group and it takes me forever to make friends.....I dread the thought of starting over with new people.....and it's doubtful I'll get put into a group as nice as this one was. And then there was the schedule thing I had going.....being able to work from home on Thursday/Friday was such a nice thing for me and our family. Most likely that's going to disappear too, as most other organizations aren't as 'open minded' as Phantom Works is. So I'm bummed about that too. And then most likely I'll have to switch buildings, which will increase our commute time.....yada yada yada.....the whole thing is just stinky, stinky, STINKY!!! BAH!

so that's my whine for now.......I have pages to post, but I'm just not in the mood. I'll do it another day. Wanted to get that mini-rant off my chest for now.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Ah, Halloween!!! It's not my favorite holiday, and I feel bad to admit that I never even got around to decorating the house for it! But Halloween is a day for children, and as a mom of three of them, I can hardly ignore it! So it was a Happy Halloween around our house this year....

First up, Trick or Treating of course! DUH.....that's the best part of the holiday, right? Our trick or treating was actually held on the 30th (Thursday night), so our trick or treating has been over for a couple days already.

So here's a couple pics from that.....Zach tried to keep up, but Matthew and Alaina were so excited with the prospect of all the candy, they kept taking off and leaving him in their dust! Buzz Lightyear, Darth Vader, and a little pirate princess set off to get as much candy as possible!

We only go to the one neighborhood, because going up to Grafton Hills gets us all way more candy than we'll ever really need! And Karl gets SOOO excited in anticipation of "the cool house"....the one house that outdoes all the others.....they go all out with decorating and acting their parts to scare the kids..... This year they had a 'pirates' theme, which actually helped to NOT scare our kids, since they were playing the soundtrack from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride from Disney World, and the kids just started singing along....but they had their house decked out so well with pirate skeletons and stuff.....

Plus, they gave out full-sized candy bars...what's not to love, huh? :P

So that was Thursday night! On Friday, it was the kids' class parties at school, and I was room mom for the Kindergarten one. I had been coordinating with other moms over the last week getting this party ready, so now it was showtime! Plus, I had to keep tabs on Alaina's class party as well. As soon as I got there, I gave the kids their costumes and they went to change....I had to help Alaina put her eye makeup on for her pirate costume....and then I had to break a school rule and run into the boys' bathroom to help Darth Vader get his pants on! :P Then I got the other moms to start the Kindergarteners' games and crafts and I went to go take some pictures in Alaina's class of what they were doing:

then they had a parade for the parents, and since it was so nice outside (like 80 degrees!), we went outside the school for that:

And yours truly somehow, once again, managed to take pictures with the big camera AND do video with the camcorder. It's a gift! :P

Then it was party time! Each class made a craft....Matthew made a bat, Alaina made a ghost....then games, then snacks!

And that was Halloween for us! Friday night, since we'd already been trick or treating, we went grocery shopping! Then Karl made the brilliant (just glad it wasn't MY questionable parenting decision) move to stay up late and watch Poltergeist with the kids. Uhm, that movie scared the CR@P out of me when I was way older than Alaina or Matthew.......and it still does, darnit! :P i lasted all of 10 minutes and then bailed and went back upstairs. :) Evidently though, it didn't scare them.....I guess our children have moved beyond the 80s horror flicks? I wonder if Freddy, Jason, or Michael Myers would scare them? Uh, we're NOT testing that hypothesis......yet!

Saturday, Matthew started swimming lessons, so he and Alaina both had swimming classes to go to. I stayed home with Zach and did dishes and made lunch for my parents, who came over for the afternoon to visit. They all got home around 1 for our late lunch of soup and sandwiches....then we spent the afternoon visiting with my mom and dad. Poor dad.....he's shrunk! He's the same height as me now, and he used to be 5'10"! Sheesh.....getting old really stinks! We went on a drive to check out the fall colors at Pere Marquette State was very pretty, and with it being such a nice day out, really crowded! After we took our drive, we came back here for some dinner and then my parents left for that's our weekend so far....

So that brings me to update you on all the scrapbook pages I did....since I had some airport time on my hands I got a few pages done earlier this week that I haven't posted yet...

Here's one from the Halloween Carnival at the school last weekend:

This is a layout of us getting our pumpkins at Eckert's And carving said pumpkin into our scary jackolantern:

This one is with some pictures I took over a month ago of Zach playing in the ditch after a doesn't drain very well, so it's like a giant puddle, and this was the day that Zach discovered the joy of it....fully clothed of course!

And the Madonna concert Monday night!
And then to finish up, this is my blessing for the seemed appropriate, given the lovely scenery......the season of Autumn:
So that's it for me....might post more tomorrow, but doubt it! :P I got my blessing done early, so now I feel like I've got extra time on my hands.....oooh, plus we get that extra hour of sleep tonight, which I'm going to go thoroughly enjoy...right now!