Monday, August 27, 2007

On our way...again

Well, tomorrow I'm off again. By myself with all 3 kids, we are flying to SC. Jody is coming on Friday. We are going to my cousin's wedding in VA and then we are participating in NGU's global missions conference. We fly out a 8 am and arrive to Greenville around 5pm. I have to change planes twice. One layover is about 2 hours and the other one is only 30. I hope I don't miss that flight. Its going to be a LONG day.

The kids are very excited. Well, Silas and Hattie are. Luke doesn't know what's going on. I'm just hoping and praying for great behavior all day and sanity for me.

My grandmother is still in the hospital but should be going home by the time we get there on Thursday. She had a pacemaker put in today. I don't really know any other details.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

What I didn't know until I had kids

I didn't make this up, my sweet mother-in-law sent it to me and I thought it was cute. I'll try to post some pictures later today or tomorrow, I'm due some new one.

-How to open a van door while bobbling 2 lunch boxes, two extra coats, a purse, a diaper bag AND a baby!!!
-Why Mom's say no...and Dad's say Yes!
-That solid white socks get lost in the dryer at a much slower rate than do the mates of patterned socks that go with special outfits!
-That one can never own too many sippy cup lids or refrigerator magnets.
-Scientific names of dinosaurs from A to Z.
-That reverse psychology really works.
-The recipe for a homemade play-doh.
-That Duplo and Lego blocks procreate in the night.
-The distinctive sounds of Cheerios crunching underfoot.
-Why they call them Happy meals.
-How far you can dilute juice and still retain it's taste.
-That man (or child anyway) really can live on peanut butter alone.
-Sesame Street's air time.
-That the more my kids learn, the less I know.
-How little sleep a human body truly need to function.
-How many seconds it takes to microwave 4 fish sticks perfectly.
-Who john Jacob Jingle Heimershmitt is.
-How to change a diaper in the dark, in a parked car, on a standing child, and all of these simultaneously!
-Which lines in The Cat in the Hat and If I Ran the Circus can be skipped over without a child noticing.
-How bright a 3 a.m. full moon is.
-The design marvels of hooded towels.
-Velcro-strap shoes and mitten clips.
-Locations of public restrooms all across town.
-Why anyone would bother retracing their steps for miles just to retrieve a lost blankie or pacifier!
-That tigers live in the trees in our backyard.
-The fine art of vacuuming floor without hosing up a Barbie shoe or a Playmobil cannonball.
-Almost every Disney lyric ever penned.
-How to spell amoxicillin, let alone say it.
-The blessedness of naps, the inviolate importance of routines.
-And the one I wanted to add...How much you could love one human being!!!

Friday, August 24, 2007

"It's not lookin good for the home team"

That's what Jody just said as we are watching this terrible guy movie, "The Marine". I've lost count of how many HUGE explosions there's been as well as how many different weapons and forces of brute strength.

Ok the home team just won. Whew. That'd be just pointless if they didn't. Don't watch it, ever, unless your husband is just in the mood for guy movie and its his turn to pick.

My 93 yr old grandmother was admitted to the hospital tonight. When I just talked to my parents, they couldn't really say why she's in the hospital. Possibly a stroke. We are supposed to visit her and stay with her next week. Now I just wish I could get there faster.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


You know, when you don't have much to talk about, you can always talk about the weather. Since I've been quarantined with the kids, I really haven't had much interesting happen to me.

But the weather...did you notice it on the side of the blog??? Jody and I have decided its the coldest days in August we have ever experienced. I had the kids in long-sleeves playing outside today. Weird.

So Silas is OBSESSED with bugs. He's really good at catching them. Like he catches flies so easily. We have a lot of crickets here and they seem to be easy to catch. Not that I've tried, but I've watched Silas. Currently we have a bug cage, a big plastic container and a small baby food jar with different bugs in them. My point is, its not too bad. It doesn't freak me out or anything. I kind of like having a bug catcher around.

Today, while were outside, Silas caught a big cricket. I think the cricket was in its last fraction of life because it wasn't really moving like they usually do. But Silas was convinced "Striper" was his best friend and just loved being around him so much, that's why he wasn't trying to get away. Silas thought he was teaching it tricks and everything. I heard him saying, Striper, you are my best friend. It was very funny. Striper is currently residing in one of the "houses" in Silas's room. If he's dead in the morning, I'm afraid we are going to have tears.

Bugs in the cages and outside are fine, but BUGS IN THE CORN...ugh. As I was shucking some corn tonight for dinner, I saw a rather large worm burrow into the bottom of the corn. I threw the corn, shrieked and ran away. Jody came running to see what was wrong. I made him shuck the rest of the corn.

The thing is, it gives me the willies. It grosses me out. It reminds me of everyday occurances in Uganda. We had bugs in our vegetables a lot. We ate bugs (which is VERY different, VERY delicious, trust me) We had worms burrow in our skin. But living in the US, I don't want to see bugs in my food.

Ok, so I guess I did have more to talk about than the weather.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

My Beef with Pampered Chef

I love pampered chef. I love the garlic press, the mini spatula (which finally broke), stoneware, and many other things.

But here's my annoyance. That little metal thing that holds the large round stone is such a nuisance to store. If you store it under the stone in a lower cabinet you have to practically sit down to grab it with both hands. If you store it in an upright cabinet, its so awkward, it gets stuck under other cookie sheets and things.

Do you get what I'm saying? Or am I doing something wrong? All I know is I want to throw it across the room when I can't get it to cooperate.

In other news, Hattie has some "highly infectious" cold sore virus. Poor thing. She has more than 10 sores of different sizes all inside her mouth, lips and throat. She cries when she eats and drinks. She has a hard time falling asleep. She can't suck on her paci (which is a good thing). She is EXTREMELY fussy, I want to put her in a closet at various times throughout the day. I took her to the dr today. The dr said she had had another 2 yr old in today with the same symptoms. The dr doesn't think its hand/foot/mouth because there are no other symptoms or fever. Nothing can be done. As long as she has sores, she is contagious. So, we are stuck inside until she gets better. No YMCA, no other contact with kids. I am praying no one else gets this or I may go stir crazy by Friday.

Monday, August 20, 2007

The House

Ok. I will never win a prize for the perfect house. It will be clean. I love to do toilets. I love cleaning with a toothbrush. But organized I am not. Even when I clean my kitchen, there is usually an area or a pile that gets neglected. As soon as I pick up the living room and am proud of the way it looks, it "magically" looks terrible again. I don't know why. I hate it.

But I am reading this little book: Organize You Home and Family by Sandra Felton. She gave me a few good excuses.

  1. Houses have gotten larger. In 1953 the average residential space was 335. In 2002 the average was 2,250.
  2. We buy more products. Then we have to put our treasures away. We have traded leisure time for things.
  3. We have adopted a higher standard of cleanliness. We have appliances and indoor plumbing, yes, but they have not lessened the amount of time we need to spend keeping the chores going.
  4. TV and computer. Need I even comment??
  5. Mom takes up the slack in what used to be done for her. For example: milk delivery, doctor's house calls, affordable household workers/repairmen, etc.
Clothes used to be worn over and over and now we just throw them in the dirty clothes instead of hanging them up. Just to have to wash them, fold them and put them away. (Which, btw, putting clothes away is my least favorite chore. I have 2 baskets FULL I need to get in drawers today. And I won't tell you how long they have been in the baskets.)

Anyways, I'm working thru the book, but I found it very interesting. Another main point she is going to hammer out is what she calls the greatest untapped resource in the home: KIDS. Makes me kind of jealous of those who have more resources than I do. :)

Saturday, August 18, 2007 the house...

You know that oldie, the park...I think it was the 4th of July.......that's what has been stuck in my head today.

What is it about overcast days that make you not want to do much?? I don't know, but its like the greatest excuse to sit around. That's what we did today. I made Zucchini and Flaxseed bread. That's about all.

Oh, I did leave the house, after the kids were in bed. I had to go to Walmart and get milk for in the morning. I know, I'm pathetic. But actually, its rather refreshing to go to Walmart all by myself.

Now for some great news....drum roll super great friend Stacy has started a blog. Check out her debut entry here and leave her tons of comments.

I am ready this book on organizing your home and family. Next post I have some VERY interesting things to tell you about WHY I am so unorganized. Mom, I know you are a dying to know.

Friday, August 17, 2007

2 things

So I have 2 things that I wanted to blog about today. I would post-pone one, but knowing me, I wouldn't be able to remember what the other one was by tomorrow.

I was reading PARENTS magazine this morning and I found a $5 coupon when you order diapers online. The prices are a little cheaper than getting them from the store and its free shipping when your order is over $50. So, I ordered. Then they said that if I would refer people, they not only got the first time order of $5 off, but I would get $1 for each order that put my refferal (sp??) down. If you do order, go here and put in EMJEN when it asks for an REF.

The second thing is a recipe I tried tonight for dinner. It was great. My friend Megan had given me some refrigerated pie crust recently and I don't really make pies. When I saw this recipe called for refrigerated pie crust, I had to give it a try. I added a few of my own improvements.

Cheeseburger-and-fries Pies
-Fries (the recipe calls for 2 - 4.25 oz micro fries. I didn't have those, I just cut up 4 small potatoes and baked them in the oven for about 20 minutes with a little salt and olive oil)
-1 T of veg oil
-1 small onion diced
-1+ tsp of minced garlic
-1/2 lb lean gr beef
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 ketchup
-1/4 c chicken (or beef) broth
-2 pie crusts (one package has 2)
-2 T of chopped pickles
-8 slices of cheddar or american cheese

Heat oven to 400. Prepare fries, cut into bite size pieces. Heat oil in pan and sautee onions and garlic. Add meat and salt. Breaking the meat up as it cooks. Stir in ketchup and broth, cook 3 minutes. Stir in fries and cool about 5 min. Roll out pie crust and cut each one into 4 pieces. Spoon filling into each section, add pickles and cheese, pinch up the sides. Bake on a baking sheet 15-20 min.

Anyways, my picky kids LOVED it and so did Jody.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

This week

Ok, so this isn't the BEST pic, but it's funny. I look pregnant (WHICH I AM NOT), Luke looks hungry (which he probably was) , Hattie looks out of it, Silas looks silly and Jody looks kind of stiff. BUt its a good view of the entry of our house and about as good as it gets when my ADHD dad was taking the picture.

We've had a busy week.

Silas and Hattie have been having swimming lessons at the YMCA. Hattie looks half the size of the other kids that were in her class. But she did SO good. You'd be impressed seeing such a little thing keeping her head out of the water, doggy paddling around. She did have a flotation thing buckled to her, don't worry. Silas's swimming skills are really improving too.

Then Mon-Wed evenings, Silas went with his buddies, Gage and Emma, to Bible school. They made really cool tye-died (is that the right spelling?) t-shirts.

Tonight the library had the end of summer reading program bash. We waited in this line for like 45 minutes for balloon animals. Whew. The funniest part was Silas was so excited that everytime the lady in front of him took a minuscule step, he would get right up close to her. At his height, his nose was right at her butt. We tried to get him to back up, but its like he was afraid he would lose his spot.

So, sorry for the little hiatus. I have missed blogging this week.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

My Dad

My dad came to visit us this weekend. He met Jody at the Sturgis Bike Rally and then came with Jody to Bismarck afterwards. It has been SO great to have "Pa" (as the grandkids call him) here.

Not only has it been fun to sit and talk and laugh and play. But my dad and Jody took on a HUGE task.

Let me preface this with our house has 4 bedrooms and one bath. The second bath is pre-plumbed, but not finished AT ALL. As of this afternoon, we are a 4 bedroom 2 bath house. Yay....

They have worked so hard setting the tub and toilet and vanity. Drywalling. Laying the lanolium. Framing the door.

I am SO proud and SO happy.

I gave the kids their bath in the new bathroom. Its right across the hall from their rooms down stairs. They were so excited. Hattie kept saying "dis our NEW bathroom".

So, I just wanted to tell you all our wonderful news. Can you tell I am SO excited??

Saturday, August 11, 2007


Store Brands

I am all about saving money. I'm, for the most part, not brand loyal. Ziplock bags, wipes, olive oil, butter, condensed soups...the store brand is good enough. Really whatever is cheaper, on sale or just plain better deal is what I buy.

Well, I've been using this store brand dishwashing detergent. And I've noticed my dishes are just looking dull and sometimes not getting clean. Especially the silverware (not real silver) has just been looking BAD. I finished up the off brand stuff and had a bottle of Cascade that I had gotten on sale at CVS. (Which, by the way, tends to put name-brand stuff on sale often). When I opened the dishwasher, I immediately noticed how shiny and clean everything looked.

I thought, did I wash on a different cycle? No. The only thing I did differently was change detergents. So now I'm wondering, is it THAT much better?

Anybody got any opinions on this? Not just dishwashing detergent, but do you have any store brand/real thing preferences?

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


My friend Melinda tagged me for 5 Things I Love about Jesus. This is a no-brainer.

  1. He is personal - He's not a god who is unrelated to my life. At every stage, I can depend on Him to meet my needs. He knows my name and everything about me.
  2. He is patient - So unlike me, I am reminded at how patient he is with me when I mess up. The example I need to have patience with my kids is always right in front of me.
  3. He is creative - Even among children of the same parents, each one is totally different. I love the little song "Look all the world over there's no one like me". The different animals and plant and weather patterns and geographical places. Amazing.
  4. He loves everyone - no matter where a person comes from or looks like or acts like, Jesus loves every person.
  5. He is available - I never get a busy signal or out of the office message. I can always depend on Jesus.
So, for this one, I want to tag Judith, Karen, Jed, and Peggy.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007


I've been tagged. If I would have been up to snuff with my blog reading, I would have realized this a few days ago. My friend Judith tagged me, so here goes...

Four jobs I have had:
1. Kitchen worker at Life Action
2. House cleaner for a B&B
3. Senior Center Program Coordinator
4. Stay at Home MOM

Four places I have lived:
1. Miami, FL
2. Greenville, SC
3. Hoima, Uganda
4. Bismarck, ND

Favorite TV shows:
1. Amazing Race
2. Lost
3. 24
4. Survivor

1. Pizza
2. Cuban Pork w/ Black Beans and Rice
3. Ribs
4. Chips and Salsa

Places I would rather be:
1. With my extended family
2. Hawaii
3. Golfing or something fun with my husband
4. Sitting all alone drinking a milkshake in peace, without sharing

Favorite movies:
1. While You Were Sleeping
2. Pearl Harbor
3. Patriot
4. Pride and Prejudice

Tag Time:
1. Holly (again)
2. Jerre
3. Becky
4. Avery (you can put it on your facebook)

****Stacy, I'd put you, if you blogged or did facebook...hint hint.

Monday, August 6, 2007


Take 2 (my computer just froze up while I was typing my blog...I HATE THAT)

Jody is down in South Dakota until Thursday. There is a huge bike rally that the Dakota Baptist are giving a Harley away at. My dad was able to meet Jody there and help man the booth too. So while they are having a great time...

Today after swimming lessons we brought Silas's friend Nolan home. I was pretty nervous. Nolan has a lot of energy. Combined with Silas, who has his own amount of extra energy, they are quite a pair. But I thought it'd be good for Silas to play rough and be rowdy for the day.

Let me just say, the day went well. The kids played well together. It wasn't bad at all.

But here are some things that happened more than once:

-Hattie screaming a VERY highpitched scream.
-Hattie tattling on the boys
-Silas ONLY using his LOUDEST voice, ALL day.
-Nolan never called Hattie or Luke by their names. It was, "that tiny little girl" and "baby"

Luke seemed to enjoy all the action going on around him. He would just follow them around and watch them. I did manage to get all 4 down for naptime, in separate rooms. All but Silas fell asleep.

Whew. I think I'll go to bed early.

We start again tomorrow...even with Nolan. He's coming over again. His daycare lady is on vacation, his mom is working, and I wanted to take him to a VBS that we have been invited to again anyway. But I think tomorrow we will eat lunch at McDonalds, maybe.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Enchiladas and Mango Ice Cream

My husband is 30 today. He's the greatest. I'm SO glad that 30 years ago he was born. He's funny and friendly and pretty predictable. I asked him what he wanted me to make for supper on his birthday. I know his favorite. I knew what he'd request, but I thought MAYBE he'd want something different. No. Enchiladas and home-made ice cream.

No cake. No big party or even going out to eat.

From the first time I ever made made Sour Cream Enchiladas, they have been Jody's favorite. I don't know why. They are good to me, but I don't want them as often as Jody wants me to make them.

And he LOVES home-made ice cream. I surprised him by making it Mango. He misses Ugandan mangos, so I splurged.

I think he was happy. He said he had a great day. The kids gave lots of extra birthday hugs and kisses. And spent all day together.

Happy Birthday Jody.

Thursday, August 2, 2007


Well, I have my first cavities. I didn't cry. Aren't you proud of me?

This was actually my first visit to the dentist in 3 years. And they aren't BIG cavities, there is one on the very back of both of my last top molars. In fact, they were found with a density machine thing. So, I have to go back in September to get them filled. She said they are very tiny and we just need to get them before they get big.

Huh. I would have thought I'd be sadder or more disappointed but I'm not. NO biggie. I mean, almost 29 years with no cavities is great.

Our babysitter Abbi stayed with the kids while I was gone. I was hesitant because Lukey has been running a fever since yesterday afternoon. Poor little guy. But he did fine and I had a nice time going somewhere all by myself.

Tomorrow is Jody's birthday, so if anyone wants to send him some birthday emails, he'd LOVE that. He's going to be 30. Ha. He's getting OLD. I remind him that I'll never catch up, unless he dies. Our email is: