Friday, February 18, 2011

It's almost over...

and no... this time I'm not talking about the month. It's the vacation.

I head back home tomorrow evening. It's been an absolutely luxurious week... no teens/tweens around. There was peace and quiet the entire week... minimal laundry, cooked good meals all week for appreciative adults, only checked in minimally each day with the kids. I have absolutely enjoyed myself.

I have found out that I definitely prefer my own cooking. We ate out a couple of times, and it was a supreme disappointment every time. We even specifically hunted down a Chinese restaurant today, and it was definitely not an enjoyable experience. We'd have had happier tummies if I'd cooked... I hate spending money out on a meal and regretting having eaten the food

There's a lovely gym that we've had access to. I just wish that I'd know there was a hot tub, and I'd  have brought my swim suit... that would have been nice to relax in during the evening. It's okay, though - I was able to get some knitting done...

I also learned that I definitely need to take my own pillow with me if I'm going somewhere... I have been missing my pillow all week. We picked up some squishier ones at Target, but it's still not the same as my super-squishy pillow at home... I will definitely sleep VERY well when I make it home tomorrow night.

Trae received the notification this week from Job Corps - he leaves this coming Tuesday. I'm excited about this opportunity for him. I only hope that he's as excited about it as I am. It's so incredible... I only wish that I'd known about it sooner. He could have already been through the program, had a job, and been living on his on by this time... Jessica should be getting her call within a few weeks, too. I know she's excited about it. Trae's going in for the HVAC program, while Jessica is going in for the medical billing and coding. That's something that she'll definitely be good at. She has such an amazing memory, and a brain for numbers... she'll totally breeze right through everything. She's already discussing the fact that if she doesn't get to take college classes while in the program, she's planning on taking them at night after she gets a job. She doesn't want to just "settle" in a single career if she can take it further. She's a smart cookie!

She'll continue working on her writing, too. I know that she absolutely wants to make a career with it at some point, and I absolutely encourage her to do so... but she also has to have a "real" job to take care of the bills while she's working on getting her name out there into the world.

The other three kids will certainly miss Trae and Jessica, although they won't readily admit it. Zach and Britt are currently planning what they want done with their rooms once their siblings are gone. I don't think they've really digested the idea that their chores are about to multiply exponentially with the loss of their counterparts. It also means that the tea shoppe will be losing Trae... I've volunteered Vicki/Zachary to work up there - they're both fully capable of raking, feeding animals, etc, and are both perfectly willing to earn money... so it's a happy thing for both of them. They won't be able to move furniture the way Trae does, but they'll get the standard chores done...

Trae's working on a list of things he needs me to pick up before he leaves. He needs a clear backpack - that's a must have, so I ordered two different ones from, and I'll let him pick one and give the other to Jessica. They should get delivered tomorrow - thank goodness for the free two-day shipping from amazon. It's an absolute lifesaver sometimes.

Cool! I just checked the tracking number from amazon, and it shows they were delivered this afternoon. I told Trae to go ahead and open the box. You just have to love it- I ordered them yesterday afternoon, and they were delivered at 12:05 today. Absolutely fabulous!

Well, I'm going to wind down for the evening... have a glass of wine and relax before bedtime. Hope everyone is well... g'nite!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

I'm leaving... on a jet plane...

I've been singing that John Denver song all week. The kids have definitely been driven nuts with it. I considered it a crowning achievement to have finally gotten the song stuck in Brittani's head last night. LOL She wasn't impressed with me.

It's actually happening - I'm heading out to West Virginia to spend a week with Andrew. The kids are at home, with Ruth in charge, and hopefully everything goes smoothly. Andrew's already checked in with me to make sure my day is on time... and it is. I'm taking no chances! Of course, I still think I must be slightly off-kilter to be leaving Houston just when we're supposed to have a week of beautiful weather to go out to the freezing Tundra of WV. It'll definitely be fun, though - hot baths can resolve freezing feet, right?

Okay - signing off for the moment - we should have boarding announcements starting soon, and I definitely want to skip off to the bathroom for a moment before we board.

Have a great day!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


So I know my life tends to get a little wild here & there... you just never know what's going to happen!

The other day when Andrew left for West Virgnia, we knew there was a leak somewhere in the house... there was a puddle in the laundry room. I did my duty and hunted it down! Turns out it was a hose on the hot water heater. One of the flexible copper hoses had apparently been slightly crimped when we hooked up the "new" (5 years ago) hot water heater... apparently over time that crimped spot had weakened enough to finally start spewing (yes, I said spewing - lots of pressure behind it!) and was slowly flooding the little hot water heater cupboard in the girls' closet, and it was seeping under the wall into the laundry room... so I picked up a new hose (braided hose this time - no chance of crimps), borrowed a friends pipe wrench, and with my oldest son's help, we changed out that hose last night...

I also picked up this really cool shelving unit from a friend of mine - one of those sets with the runners and wire drawers... she never even unpackaged it, having decided to do something else in her closet... so I had the entertaining time of putting the thing together... The only tool needed was a mallet. It's absolutely fabulous, though. I was able to go through the mountain that tends to grow on my side of the bed, and organize the whole shabang! It's awesome! (I'm not totally done sorting through everything that I unburied, but I should finish it if I just sit down & work at it for a couple of hours... it was a HUGE mountain of stuff )

There's never enough excitement in my life, though... so a friend of my husband's has wonderfully gifted some of his airline miles, so that we were able to get ME a ticket to fly out to West Virginia for a week with Andrew. How completely awesome is that? $40 for a round trip ticket... and it includes flying home on the same flight as Andrew. Talk about a fabulous working vacation. (He'll be the one working, I'll be on vacation... with SNOW! and NO TEENAGERS! It really WILL be a vacation! )

I have a list of things to get done before leaving on Saturday, though... and a list of things that I need to take with me... there's a kitchen in the place that we'll be staying, but I'm not sure how well-equipped it is, so I have to decide what necessities I need to take with me to cook in a possibly "less than ideal" set up. I know for certain that my husband will want Chicken Schnitzel at least one of the nights - his absolute favorite dish of mine... I know my "One Pot Wonders" always go over well, and are easy... and warm and filling which is always a perk... I know I'll have to put my supplies in my "check in" luggage, though... but I can't decide if I should take one of my good kitchen knives or not... I can take my little calphalon skillet for cooking the chicken & whatever other meat I want to cook. I need my meat tenderizer for pounding the chicken... decision, decisions!

It's time to rouse the children and put them to work for the day... laters!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Zipping by...

It's only February, and the year is already zipping past... I had my 40th birthday. It's supposed to be a milestone of some sort, isn't it? I did have an awesome weekend for it, though. The weather was positively gorgeous, and I spent time with friends, dinner out with husband, and it actually felt like the weekend was mostly about me - a highly unusual situation LOL

Andrew's out of town for work. He'll be gone for two weeks... I always hate when he has to leave, although the house tends to get really clean while he's gone for some reason. I end up in spring cleaning mode no matter what time of year it is. Lots of stuff leaves, cabinets get reorganized, even the medicine cabinet usually gets gone through. I have no idea why those things don't happen while he's home... weird.

We did have a snow day last week - another very odd event. The kids definitely enjoyed it! Plus we had some new baby chicks born... that's always exciting. We love our baby critters (smile).

I'll get some pictures posted over the next couple of days from the snow... I have a fun video of Brittani & Zachary playing in it, too. I definitely need to load it - it's entertaining...

It's past bedtime for now, so I'm going to go snuggle up in my blankets and catch some Z's! G'nite!