Thursday, December 29, 2005

Family Fringe Benefits

OK, I've got an awesome family and I married into another one. . . we've got some big time fringe benefits!

Here are just a couple of my favorites!!

Matt's sister Tiff is a photographer. Not just a photographer, but an awesome, amazing photographer! Pretty much any great pictures you see of me or my kids was taken by her. . . see our Christmas card above! Not only does she take great pictures but she's a pro at using photoshop so she can take the bags out from under my eyes, wax my eyebrows (like I really have any!) and whiten my teeth all from her little computer. Bless you photoshop! She can also make children smile that weren't before. In the original above photo Molly wasn't smiling, so she just took a picture that she was smiling in and moved her face!!
P.S. you can check out her website at Hey, for as many pictures she does for us, I can do a little publicity. . .

Another of Matt's sisters, Amber, has worked for a store as a cake decorator for almost 10 years, Check out these awesome cakes she has made for my kids for birthdays

Madison's princess castle cake. . .

As opposed to the cake I made. . .

Just kidding that's one she got to make at preschool in the ez bake oven!

And Molly's favorite doggy cake. . .

I'm hoping she can make some awesome ones in about a month. January 31st is Madisons birthday, and February 1st is Mollys!!

Thanks to the fam!! Love ya!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

You're it!!

Ok, I've been tagged by my buddy Christy for this 24 hour thingy. You list something significant, or not so significant that occurred at each hour at some time in your life.

12:00 (midnight)--at this hour, I'm most likely finally getting to bed and I'm usually up (for the first time, not the last) to check on which kid was doing that weird cough

1:00 --I'm usually up again. I don't think I've slept "through the night" since Madison was born.

2:00 --hmm. Hopefully I've been able to sleep maybe a full hour without the kids coughing, sneezing, making strange breathing sounds, or with Matt accosting me from the other side of the bed. . . sorry, you probably didn't want to read that, but hey, I'm here to give the facts.

3:00 --this is the hour with all of my preganacies that I was up to go to the bathroom

4:00 --this is the hour that my family usually is up 'til when we get together. We stay up all night playing games, cards, etc. Sometimes we fall asleep between turns. . .

5:00 --I've probably been up a few times in a panic that I've overslept

6:00--on February 1, 2001 Molly Sue entered the world at 6:50am. She was about 5 days late, but when it was time, she came fast and furious.

7:00--just two years and 1 day earlier, Madison Mary Jill Mar entered our world at 7:56. She was 2 weeks early and caught everyone by surprise.

8:00--I'm a dental hygienist and also a faculty member at the UNMC College of Dentistry, this is the hour that clinic begins, hmm, do I want to be a nice instructor today???

9:00 --Madison starts school at this hour. I think 8 am is WAY too early for school to begin. I'm a product of afternoon kindergarten and I like it that way.

10:00--everyday this is when my stomach starts growling. Time for a little snack.

11:00--Whitney Afton Carolyn Mar came along just this past March 14th at 11:43.

12:00 (noon) --umm, anyone want to go out to lunch??

1:00--Matt and I were married almost 11 years ago at the Salt Lake City Temple during this hour.

2:00 --time to catch up on the laundry and see what's going on in the celebrity world with EXTRA! (Ok, it's yesterday's show, so I guess I'm a day late on the news.)

3:00--the attack of the kids. Molly is done with preschool and Madison is done at 3:38 (an odd time, I know) from her day of 1st grade.

4:00--If I missed Oprah at 3pm, I can watch it again!!

5:00 --No clue what to fix for dinner. Deciding what to have is one of my least favorite things to do. . .

6:00--hopefully by now the kids have been fed something.

7:00--Ah, that blessed hour of the beginning of prime-time!!

8:00--during the school year this is the hour that hopefully my kids are headed to bed (if I'm lucky!)

9:00--on the nights that Matt works late, this is when he supposed to be heading home

10:00--many nights, this is when Matt finally gets home. This hour is usually busy since the kiddos are asleep and I can run around and get all my things done. Matt and I catch up on the day, and watch some tv.

11:00--hopefully by now I'm headed to sleep, usually one of the kids has been fussing up or by now, but hopefully is back to bed for the night.

Ugh, that made me tired. I've been tagged by Lisa for another little ditty, so I'll get around to that maybe tomorrow. Good night my blog friends.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Oh, to be a cat. . .

Hey Smokey, how about YOU be the mom today, and I'll be the cat. . . .

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Where have you been??

I can remember lots of things about my childhood growing up here in Nebraska.
Catching fireflies in the summer and keeping them in mason jars hoping they would be my nightlight.
Snow drifts taller than me.
Bundling up in all my snow gear to head to the hill to sled on "Snow days" off from school.
Decorating bikes for the 4th of July parade.
Staying out from dawn 'til dusk on my rad banana seat bike heading up to the cul-de-sac to hang out with all the neighborhood kids and play kick the can and jailbreak.

And of course, the sweet, sweet taste of Jello Pudding Pops. My favorite was the chocolate/vanilla swirl. Then sometime in the 80's they were snatched from existence. Where have you gone sweet, sweet pudding pops?? I wondered day after day. Once in a while as my kids and I snacked on Jello pudding I would excite them with stories of a wonderful concoction of frozen pudding with their eyes all aglow!! We even tried to make our own sad version by putting popsicle sticks into the pudding cups and freezing them. Yuck. Not even close!! Well, last night I was already heading to sleep (I've got a nasty cold) when my babe came home from a meeting and from stopping at the store to pick up formula for Miss Whitney. He said, "Close your eyes. . . " Dear Pudding Pops, where have you been??? I've missed you so.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Name them one by one. . .

Friday afternoon I received a disturbing phone call. The husband of a gal I grew up with here in Lincoln (she was just a couple years ahead of me in YW) had died. She is now a widow at the age of 33, with 6 kids. The details of what happened are still unknown. The autopsy was supposed to be happening today. The initial guess was perhaps a staph infection from a surgery he had on Tuesday to amputate a finger he had injured. My heart aches for her. Of course I tried to imagine myself in that situation. Her oldest is 13 I think. He is in a wheelchair from having cerebral palsy due to a premature birth. Her youngest is a girl just a few months older than my Whitney. Most of the day on Saturday as I played with my kids and watched Matt play with them, I was thinking of this poor family, completely broken apart.

As I pulled into the parking lot for 9am church, I noticed her getting out of her van. She's not in our ward, but her mother is, and I guess they all had stayed at her mom and dad's for the weekend. I don't know her very well, except for hellos here and there if we see each other, but as a mother and a wife I knew I had to try to do something. I had gone over in my head anything I could do for her. . . groceries, a meal, a package of diapers, babysitting, but it all just seemed useless. I needed to get inside to get some things done with my new calling, but that all would have to wait. I rushed over to her van, as she was helping unload her oldest son with his wheelchair. As I approached she asked how I was. Me?? I said I certainly didn't care how I was, how was she??? I hugged her for some time and told her to please tell me if there was anything I could do. She said "well, I don't even know what I'm doing." I hugged her again, and said it would probably be a while and that was ok. I picked up her sleeping baby from her carseat, grabbed a bag and headed inside with her, and her other children. I have no idea how she was even there that morning, or how she will make it through the funeral on Saturday, except for her relying on the strength and prayers of others.

All weekend I've been counting up my blesssings and I am loaded full, how about you?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Rocker babes and a princess

Ok, I'm way late, but here's some photos of the girls from Halloween. They all were so cute, but Whitney definitely stole the show as our little punk rocker (earring and all). She just looks like she's defying against everything doesn't she??

Friday, November 04, 2005

Whooooo are you? Who? Who? Who? Who?

At my job I usually have a different perspective of people. Usually upside down. Ok. Confused? Let me explain. I'm a dental hygienist, so through most of the appointment I'm looking at the patient as if they're upside down, or at least sideways. I also, thankfully, am usually looking at their mouth instead of their face so I usually just see this with my peripheral vision. To make a long story short (too late) people look much different when seen with just peripheral vision. Here's a list of the people I've seen in my office lately. Of course, when they really stand up and I get a face to face look at them, they usually look nothing like this person. . .

The head guy from CSI (the original) that plays Gil Grissom. I think his real name is William Anderson??
Rob Thomas from Matchbox Twenty
Shirley Jones---the Partridge Family Mom
An older version of my mom
My brother in law Sterlings twin (they say everyone has one.)
The red head Dr. from ER actor Scott Grimes, he plays Dr. Morris on the show.
Ewan McGregor--without the beard (ok, now I know you're jealous.)

I'll keep you posted on which actor/rock star/family member shows up next.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

We are Family

We just got back from Grandpa's Camp. What is Grandpa's camp you ask? Well, well, let me explain. It's usually about a week of complete craziness. Treasure hunts, talent shows, trips to the zoo, going on outings, late nights of games and homemade shakes for the adults, late night stories and bedtimes for the kids. Every summer for the past 7 years or so we've had Grandpa's Camp. We would all meet up at my Dad's house here in Nebraska from across the country. April 2004 was the last Grandpa's Camp there at "Calvert Place". About 12 years ago my Dad bought a large old (1900's) home and remodeled it. In 2004 he had decided to sell the house and move to Arizona to work on a new business venture in ethanol investing. ANYWAY, we have some great memories of Grandpa's Camps past.

There was an awesome playroom that my sister had painted. This is usually where the big treasure hunt ended for the little kids with a load of toys and books for them. Every summer at Grandpa's Camp we would paint up the kids hands and get them on the wall. My favorite is my niece Hannah's handprint at only 7 days old. When my Dad sold the house we wanted to cut out the drywall and keep it somehow.

Usually Grandpa's Camp consists of a lot of planning on our part (my 3 other sisters and me--this last year was the first year my brother from NYC, and North Carolina was able to make it.) We'd plan the activites, organize the days, the food, etc, etc, and my Dad would show up to play with the kiddos.

This is the kids last year getting ready to race on the go-carts!! At the end of our long days, we'd pile all the kids in one room, in beds and sleeping bags and my Dad would read story after story from the rocking chair until they were all asleep (usually including my Dad!). Their favorite by far (and mine) is Brer Rabbit and the Tar Baby (complete with all the accents, just like the Uncle Remus record we used to have.)

A few of the nights during the week the kids and Grandpa put on a show. They love to plan it all out, get the outfits and usually my Dad or brother in law Jon was the emcee for the show. We had dances, hulas, piano numbers, and song after song. That's Madison in the middle showing off her fabulous hula, and check out those Jazz hands!

They love to dress up, put on silly hats and sing and dance to their little hearts desire while my Dad accompanies them on the guitar or banjo. He even wrote a Grandpa's Camp song (to the tune of "Ride that Glory Train"), and every year he writes a new verse. We have plenty of video of all the shows and the kids love to watch them over and over.

One year we did a "garden party" for all the kids (all girls but one!!) We had butterfly wings and decorations and even pinwheel sandwiches, slugs (baby pickles cut in half), and cheese sailboats to eat!! One of the best memories for the kids (sometimes for the adults) was the year of the chickens. CHICKENS? Yep, you heard it (I mean, read it) right.
My Dad had remembered as a boy having a few feather-footed bantam hens. So he chatted with my brother in law Jon about it and before we knew it they were ordering chickens for Grandpa's Camp!! So they sent off for 25 baby chicks to arrive a few weeks before Grandpa's Camp. 25? Yep, you see if you ordered 25 then you got the special bonus of 2 RARE chicks. It's all about the bargain!! So we all were at church when my Dad got the phone call from the post office saying our package had arrived. I'm sure it was more like "Please get over here and pick up this loud package before we throw it out the window!!" I guess they don't want a box of chirping chickens sitting around the post office on a Sunday afternoon!! So we pulled the kids out of Primary--hey, THE CHICKENS ARE HERE!! My, oh my, they can cram a lot of chickens into one tiny box. A lot of LOUD chickens, that is. I guess it has to do with warmth and hopefully keeping them alive. The kids were so excited and wide eyed as we opened the box, and the parents were all saying "Are you kidding? How loud can these things get??" So we put them downstairs into their new box in the basement with a heat lamp and a bunch of chicken feed. My neice Hannah (the same one with the 7 day old handprint, at this point was 5) would earn the most points for teaching us about chickens. Did you know that chickens are not so fond of ice baths?? They also don't so much like meeting the neighborhood cat. They like to be held but surprisingly not like Lenny and the rabbits in Of Mice and Men. Who knew that this would not only be the Year of the Chickens but would also be the year of teaching our children about death and burying chickens. See kids, it's all part of the circle of life. . . at the end of Grandpa's camp we managed to save a few of the chickens and pawn them off to unsuspecting friends in the ward that lived on a farm (you need a few chickens out there don't you??) and a few to Madison's preschool where they have a little barn with some other animals.

In April 2004, when we met up at Dad's house for the final clean out before the move, we had a great Grandpa's Camp. One of the highlights was the ceremonial cutting of Grandpa's comb-over. It was long overdue!!! After years of telling him to let it go, he finally decided it was time. All of the kids got to climb up on a little stool and take a little snip of the old-man's locks. It was hilarious!! The Moms even kicked off the event with a rendition of "Cut-it" to the tune of "Beat-it".

So, this last year has been a busy one for our family. My Dad moved to Arizona and was busy traveling to New York, London, Geneva, and Stockholm. My sister moved from Omaha to San Jose in July. So Grandpa Camp kind of got missed this year. My sister called me and wanted me to fly out to visit. The timing wasn't great, even though I really wanted to go. I found one weekend that could work. I talked with my Dad we got the ball rolling. We called everyone and it just happened. I feel so lucky and blessed to be part of my family. We live coast to coast but try to make up reasons to be together. This year was a little different than in years past. With only about 36 hours with all of us together, we bypassed the show, but we did have a few numbers by the little ones. We got some great pictures and we did have a fabulous treasure hunt. Most of all, the cousins got to play and the parents got to play and stay up late and chat. I guess I'm getting to the age of realizing that not much matters in life besides family. I loved that we were all able to drop what was going on at home and get together for a weekend. No one knows how much longer we all have together, but we'll take it while we can get it.

So even though this year was not quite the same, I'm glad we didn't let a year get by without Grandpa's Camp. As the years get by us and we and our kids get busier, it may not happen every year, but for now, my kids can't stop talking about it and we can't wait until next year.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Crazy sleeper

Ok, I had to post a couple more pictures I've taken of Molly since that last post about her crazy sleeping. . .

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Sweet Dreams

It is absolutely impossible for Molly to stay in her bed while sleeping. I literally have to pick her up off the floor 3-4 times before I go to bed myself. It doesn't even matter how far you push her over to the other side. Sometimes she looks like she's kneeling at her bed but she's just fallen half way off. Maybe her bed is uncomfortable? Maybe she likes sleeping on the floor? Maybe at her age of 4 1/2 and her petite frame she needs a King size mattress? Things that make you go Hmm.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Now there's an idea. . .

Just when I thought I'd seen almost everything.
How about this for Halloween?? A Whoopie cushion?? I wonder if it really works if you squeeze the kid??

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

My so not a vegetarian 4 year old

Today I picked up one of those rotisserie chickens at the store, (ok, I feel like I have to justify that statement--it was lunchtime, and freshly cooked, I was tired, I was weak and it was only $4.48, and hey, they're pretty good.)

Molly ate up both of the "drumsticks", or as she called them--the legs. The whole time she was eating, she was saying. . .MMMM. ..that's some good chicken.

A half an hour later, she comes to me and says Mom, can I have some more chicken? I said sure, I would get it after I finished putting Whitney down for a nap. Sooooo... 2 hours later, she finds her way back to me (I always manage to forget. . . hmmm, funny how that happens), holding the chicken package in her hand, and says, "HELLLLOOOO, bemember--she always says it that way:)--you were gonna get me some chicken? And this time, (as she begins to make a sawing motion on her body, with her eyes wide and crazy) I want the arm!!!"

Friday, September 09, 2005

Our COOL summer project

Madison was asking ALL summer to do something COOL! How about cleaning your room? That's cool! Then those lovely eyes would roll, just like any other 6 1/2 year old (going on 13) would do. So, Matt decided to order some monarch caterpillars online. We had found a caterpillar a few years ago and watched it change into a butterfly and the girls loved it, so we thought we'd give it a try! Well, we managed to kill all the first set (when they arrive, they're so tiny you practically need a microscope to transfer them to the new container!). It was alright though because if you manage to kill at least 1/2 in the first 72 hours the company will send a new set out!! While we were hunting for milkweed (the only thing they will eat) we did manage to find a couple of bigger caterpillars, and it's a good thing too because those were the only ones we managed to keep alive. By the time we were done with the whole process, I wondered if we got these caterpillars for the kids or for us. Matt and I would sit and watch these little creatures and be amazed by the changes into a cocoon and into a butterfly. The kids thought it was cool too, but we had to keep saying, kids, come watch, come on, come see this!! We even videotaped the caterpillar changing into it's cocoon. That was impressive. It kind of unzips it's skin and flips inside out (not really, but that's the best way to verbalize it!) . The girls ended up naming the butterflies Becky and Emily. So now whenever we see a monarch, they say, hey, there's Becky, hey, there's Emily!! Alright, it gets the stamp of approval for COOL summer project!
Enjoy the photos.

See it??

Ooh, that tickles!

How many can you see in there??

The classic "hanging J", that means it's ready.

Time to hibernate

All done.



Not so cool anymore mom!!

New home (Becky)

Another new home! (Emily)

Where did my baby go??

Roar!! This is my new scary face!!

What did you say??

Oh, you like my socks? Me too!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

These boots were made for walkin'

I know this is an old picture you've probably seen before but I believe now is the time to bring it out again.
I was driving home from work this morning and the corner gas station was changing the prices.
I had to rub my eyes and make sure I was seeing it right. . .

I do still live in Nebraska right???

I guess I'll get out my walkin' boots.

Monday, August 29, 2005

It was bound to happen. . .

Ok, I knew someday someone would come along and dash the dreams of my child. Who knew it would be at age 6 1/2??

Madison started 1st grade today. At her school they do something called Sheridan (the name of the school) Camp a few weeks before school starts, for the kindergarteners and 1st graders, where they get to go for a few days in the morning to get ready for their new teacher, classroom, etc. Madison loves her new teacher, Mrs. Clark. She had a great 3 days, sitting in the little chairs at the little tables, doing dot to dot, listening to stories, writing a story, seeing old friends, meeting new friends, and then it happened. She came home with a note on her last day of Sheridan camp and said Mom, you have to read this. It was a welcome to 1st grade letter from all of the teachers. It talked about how excited they were. . . . . . . . then it came.

"With the hot weather, shoes are a concern. We respectfully ask that flip flops and sandals without backs, NOT be worn at school. This becomes as issue of safety on the stairs, on the playground and in the gym."

Let it be known that we are a flip-flop family, as you can easily see from the picture. My children would wear flip-flops all year round, if they could. Last winter Molly and Madison managed to always have a pair hidden somewhere and would at least wear them around the house and try to get out the door with them on, even with a foot of snow on the ground.
So after I read the letter and assured her life would go on, the DRAMA ensued!! She called her friend Libby, and a fellow flip-flop lover, and they went on and on about the "traumatic event."

After a few hours of pouting (this is a highly specialized skill from my husbands side of the family), being the shopping mother that I am, I told her we could go that very night and find some new shoes. We found some cute sandals (with backs!!) and some of those 'crocs' shoes (kinda ugly but hey, they had a back on them, and they were pink!) The whole time we were shopping, her eyes would well up with tears and she said "Mom, I just keep thinking about the flip-flops!" Oh, the flip-flops that would never be. The flip-flops that would be lonely on those days until their delightful owner snatches them up at 3:39 pm, the minute after school lets out!! Last night she said, "Mom, I just realized. . . Now the ONLY day I can wear flip-flops is on Saturday!!! (I do somehow manage to make them wear their nice white "church sandals" on Sunday.)

I somehow think she'll survive without them. She'll come bouncing out of her classroom with new crafts and stories and pictures she's made. She'll dance around with her new friends and old friends and not even realize that her beloved flip-flops were left at home.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

I surprised myself

Ok, just a quick post. . . I'm hoping you have noticed my little "Flickr" box up there? See it? With the cute little pictures??? Ok, I kind of surprised myself that I figured that out. I was actually shocked that when all was said and done, the little box appeared just like it was supposed to! When I put it in the "template" portion, I just kind of guessed where it was supposed to go, so that's where the Flickr box ended up. Who knows? Maybe next time it'll be under my profile or something. . . So go ahead and click on it and you can see some of my photos, I'm sure I'll be adding more. . . and it was kinda fun, this could get dangerous.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

There's something for everyone

So, I was at the library this morning. I got there a few minutes before it opened and found quite a crowd. Who knew that this many people had urgent business at the library on a Saturday morning? Anyway, I noticed an older woman (80+), step in the building just before the doors opened. She was wearing a nice navy mu-mu type dress, and some comfy shoes (SAS, I'm sure). She smiled at me and I smiled back. As I was checking on the computer to see if they had my book, I noticed her out of the corner of my eye, looking through some paperbacks. She picked up 3 or 4 of them, then headed for the check out. After she had walked away I glanced up at the labeled portion of the paperback holder. What did it say you ask? Romance.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

It's MOVING Day!!

My hubby works for State Farm, and they always have great 'car' pictures sent around the office. Here's some he forwarded me today. I'm amazed the tires are still intact, but hey, look, they're right--duct tape works for everything!!! And hey, is that a GEO???

Friday, August 12, 2005

Who Knew??

so, I was roaming around the blogging world. I'm an admitted blogging eavesdropper--"my name is Wendy and I'm a blogging eavesdropper. Everyone now. .. "HI WENDY." I wander from one post to another and find another one from a comment. ANYWAY, I came across one that now, of course, I can't find again. It was about the funny situation you find yourself in when you're chatting with someone in the bathroom, then do you carry on the conversation while your in the stall? Or wait? Or what? So, credit goes to that person for my idea for this blog. Thanks!

While we were on vacation in Florida with my siblings, spouses and kids we were at Sea World. Some of us decided we'd better use the bathroom before another ride on "Krackin'" the roller coaster. Krackin' is exactly what it does to your back, but it's an awesome ride. So off we go. I was done and waited for my husband and brother in law Jon. They walked out of the restroom together, not something you usually see guys do. So, I had to ask. "So do you guys like stand next to each other in there or what?" Apparently there are rules about a guys bathroom! So, as a public service to all you ladies out there, I'll lay it out for you, because now, I'm an expert!

1. As you enter the bathroom, take a look at the urinals. Let's pretend there are 5 urinals. If no one is there, you take the one farthest from the door (#5)

2. If someone is already at the farthest one, then you take the closest one--#1 (so you are as far away from the other guy as possible).

3. Now, it gets tricky. If the last spot and the first spot are taken you may, in an emergency, take urinal #3. If in the rare case it's busy in there, and #1,3 and 5 are taken, you WAIT! Don't take that #2 or #4 slot, or you may be labeled as a freak. (This was odd to me since in any sporting event, guys are not shy about slapping each other on the behind, etc. So, who would care if someone's standing right next to you while you take care of things?? But, I guess this may be the ONE situation when the guys are modest???)

4. This may be the most important rule--Whatever you do, do not move your eyes below eye level. Or as Matt explained, "Do not look down!" So, you drop your keys. .. don't look down! Have to sneeze?? Keep that head up! Need to tie your shoe? Wait please!

I hope you are now more informed. . . and hey, Who Knew???

p.s. I spent WAY too long picking out my "favorite" urinal picture from google!! (This one is from the Taj Mahal in India! Just becuase I knew you were wondering!!)

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Who are the people in your neighborhood?

(come on, all you Sesame Street lovers. . . in your neighborhood, in your neigh-bor-hooooood, Who are the people in your neighborhood, they're the people that you meet each day. .. )

There's just something about living so close to another person, it has to be written about. Matt and I have been married for 10 1/2 years and have lived in 2 apartments before buying our home (we've been here about 6 1/2 years). Our first apartment was like any other newly married couple. Let's just say we lived on love, because there wasn't room for much else in that place. We were there for about 7 months but oh, the neighbors we had. We were on a ground level apartment not far from "Salt Creek". Let's just say when you were just a few short blocks away, you could say, "we're getting close, I can smell it." Mmmmm, breathe in the sulfur. We were in a corner apartment so technically we only had one "neighbor". At one time in his life he was a famous Nebraska Cornhusker football player (actually won the Heisman trophy--we haven't had too many from Nebraska so you may be able to narrow it down). Now a days. . . . not so much. Let me begin this by saying he was always very nice to us, just not so nice to the guests in his apartment. I don't know why those who like to yell and rant and rave choose to do so at such a late hour. His favorite time started at 11 pm or so and DID NOT STOP until well after 4am!!! This was almost every night!! Perhaps he was upset that he was now a "has-been" or that he had to drive a run down, beat up Chevy sedan, but come on!!!
Let's not leave this apartment memoir without recalling the millions of parties that took place at this complex (far too close to the University campus), and our car was "bumped" more than a couple times by the drunks headin' home. Gotta love those confident drunks---"I'm not even close to that car!"

Ok, apartment number two, located in "the hood", if there is such a thing in Lincoln, Nebraska. It was a six-plex apartment building and hey the rent was cheap, it was a big apartment and they let us keep our cat. You'll find out later why I was glad we had a cat in the apartment! (Oh, the suspense is killing you, isn't it?) So let's begin with the Mexican family that lived below us. . . Don't get me wrong, I'm all for culture, but not in the form of huge parties with everyone singing Spanish Karaoke!! All night!! They would cook in their little bbq (you know, the ones that are just about 12 inches in diameter, and 2 inches off the ground) right out on the front lawn, which was on 27th street, one of the busiest streets in Lincoln, then party all night. So, several times we went down and banged on the door, or stomped on the floor, but to no avail. But I tell you, the moment I brought home a treadmill, they were right up banging on our door. I guess I should've just waited to exercise until Midnight when the party was reaching it's frenzy!!! I do still use that excuse to not exercise (oh, I don't want to wake or bother the neighbors!)
Alrighty, the apartment right across from us. . . they were fairly nice, didn't cause much trouble but the smoke that seaped through the walls of our "non-smoking apartment!" The worst was the bathroom. I tell you, if I ever did want to get a little buzz, I could just go hang out in the bathroom for about 2 minutes and I'd be fully loaded!!
Onto the next, upstairs. The drug addict guy, mentally handicapped wife (I think), and 1 year old boy. I know you think I'm making this up.. . . but I have several family members that could testify on my behalf! So all night long, during the mexican fiestas, people were up and down the stairs. .. hmm. . . our little good Mormon minds would wonder "what's goin' on??" Several times the lovely police department arrived at our apartment complex to drag him out. Matt would love to stand by the peephole of our door and watch the whole thing play out. . . he would always sing "Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for you?" Matt, stop, I swear he's going to shoot us! I'm sure he always thought it was us that called them. Ok, maybe we did call, but only once or twice.
Now the apartment across from the pusher. . . she must've known our old neighbor. She would choose 3 am to fight out the window to the parking lot (which was right out our bedroom window) with her boyfriend. I think he liked to stand RIGHT UNDER our window! Maybe I was just being trained for my future children and being up all night.
Ok, thank goodness we had Smokey the cat. So, my guess is that someone, once upon a time, in our apartment building had hamsters. They must not have liked them, and left them behind, to dwell forever in the walls. (Maybe they escaped??) So for about 3 months, while on the computer in our 2nd bedroom, you would hear little scratches in the walls. Just enough to make you stop and listen and it would stop too. It got worse and worse and we got used to just pounding the wall to make it stop. One morning our fearless cat left us a gift outside our bedroom door. A dead hamster. I guess that hunter mentality was still intact. I wasn't sure what it was at first. It wasn't a mouse, or a rat.. . .so we decided maybe a hamster? Where the heck did she get a hamster? A few days later, in the living room, as we arrived home, another dead hamster. Boy, Smokey was a great hunter. Not that I liked having dead rodents, but better than live rodents. . . just wait. I think she caught one more, but I can't remember. A lovely Saturday afternoon, I was lying on the floor, Matt on the couch and Smokey was on a chair in the kitchen.
Matt says, "Wendy, don't look."
"Don't look, just stay right there."
Of course I'm not going to just sit there, so I look to the kitchen.
Sauntering across the floor is a hamster. I look at Smokey and she is just lazily watching this thing cross our floor, I'm sure she is thinking, "Honestly guys, haven't I done enough around here? Do I have to keep killing these things? All the fun is just gone."
So Matt manages to catch the thing in a shoebox. Ok, now what? Matt calls a pet store to see what we should do. They guy that answered must've been having a great day. He suggested that we just let it go and watch the cat catch it. After a while, Matt says that she's already caught and killed 3 of them, and that his wife may not want to watch that happen. The guy finally says, we can bring it in and he'll "take care of it." Great. So we head off with our little shoebox, delivering this little thing to his death sentance at "The Pet Ark."

We love our neighborhood now. But each neighborhood has "it's thing." But that's for another blog. So, if you're keeping track so far (and still reading this), here are the people in my neighborhood---

Has been, yelling, Heisman Trophy winner
Countless drunk college students
Mexican karaoke loving, hibachi cooking, partying, haters of treadmills
Smokestacks across the hall
Drug dealer, et al
The Bickersons
4 forgotten hamsters

So, Who are the people in YOUR neighborhood?

Saturday, July 23, 2005

We are not afraid.

Hi everyone, check out this link. With the terror events in London over the last 3 weeks, someone had an idea to set up a website to show the terrorists that their attempts to bring fear to us will not work. Check out some of these photos people have submitted. (And maybe submit your own!)

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Tiny Bubbles. . . .

ok, here's how it played out. The "informer", aka, 6 year old Madison comes in my room.
"Um, Molly is drinking bubbles."
"She's drinking bubbles."
I lay Whitney on the bed and go to see what horror is awaiting me. I find the suspect in the kitchen getting a drink from the fridge.
"Molly were you drinking the bubbles?"
"Um, (with her eyes looking sideways-'do I lie about this? What kind of question is that?') Yes."
I have learned from one of the many Supernanny reality shows to get at their level (I however don't have a --everybody now in an English accent-- Naughty mat) anyway, I bend down, "Are you seriously telling me that you were drinking bubbles?" "What were you thinking?" "You can't do that, Molly!"
I'm really trying to hold it together, like I know what I'm doing, but I'm looking at the dumbfounded look on her face, as if she's saying, "Look, lady, why would anyone drink bubbles, obviously you haven't seen enough cartoons of babies that drink the bubbles, then consequently burb bubbles all day long."
I ask her again, "why did you do that?" She puts her little finger up by her mouth and says, "Umm, Umm, Umm, " then looks at me and smiles and says, "I'm just a little nervous, Umm, Umm, maybe to blow bubbles." I can't help it now and I start laughing.
She is the sweetest, most BUBBLY thing.

By the way, the same child just came in as I was typing, with a spoon and the lemon juice from the fridge saying "can I have some of this mom?" Maybe she's testing out her taste buds today? She just came back in, "Um, mom, can I have pizza?" Wow, what a combination, bubbles, lemon juice, pizza. What's next?

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

little thoughts of my days

hubby's gone
just me and my girls
make-up, fingernails, and "can we rollerskate?"

4 and feisty!
Molly what are you doing? "I don't know. . . "
Better go check and see
100 pounds of attitude in a 32 pound frame
makes me laugh, makes me shake my head,
makes me smile
makes me worry, but I know she'll make it,
she's tougher than me
my little sick 5 week old with the breathing treatments
up all night worried about her
lots of tears
look at you now, no fear, no worries
Love those faces, love the kisses
"I just have baby kisses tonight mom."

Where did the time go?
already a 6 year old
mature beyond those few years
she'll be gone too soon
so eager to please and a perfectionist
just like her daddy
but she looks like me they say
always a thought for someone else
"my eyes are getting watery mom, I miss Sarah"
Today I'm fasting for Alijah's surgery tomorrow
Wow, who will you be, who were you before I was blessed
to have you in my life?

My new babe
just learning about you
such a great sleeper for mom
learning how to laugh, soooo sweet and funny
loving your sisters, talking and cooing on and on
already so chubby, I love it! But way too big too fast
I'll enjoy the snuggles, and little sweet noises
my other babes taught me that.
You think I'm the funniest thing around,
and the best thing to look at,
I'll take it while I can get it.