Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Free at Last, Free at Last

The house in Big Timber is sold!!!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Crossing my fingers and toes...

It's that time. After 1 1/2 years of being on the market, we are finally signing papers tomorrow to sell our Big Timber house. Wednesday the buyers will sign. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that all finishes as it's supposed to.

After Wednesday, there will be a HUGE sigh of relief. Wish us luck!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Where do I want to be in August?

I've asked for tickets for my birthday... not sure it will happen, but a girl can dream.

Behind the scenes of 21 Guns

21 Guns video

Friday, June 26, 2009

Home Again, Home Again

We finally made it home last night. After an unexpected delay, (night of two kids sick) we made the 10 hour trip home. It was a fun trip filled with lots of swimming, a visit to the Discovery Center, miniature golfing, more swimming, visits with High School friends, family reunions on both sides of the family and more swimming.

all 10 cousins together

As fun as the trip was, it is really nice to be home.

Monday, June 15, 2009

They're Coming to Take Me Away...

The drive from Billings to Salt Lake is very, very, VERY long. It went as well as could be expected. My final analysis:
  • 5: the number of kids I started with.
  • 7: the total number of stops we had to make.
  • 11: the number of hours it took us to make what would normally be a 10 hour trip. Note: we didn't even stop to eat...just ate in the car.
  • 1: the number of band-aids needed because pipe cleaners are dangerous toys.
  • 2: the number of trips through the McDonalds drive thru I need because I can't seem to figure out that six people need six hamburgers and not five.
  • 5: the number of objects playing noise all at once that will make me lose what little brain I might have left. Those five objects were: my music (essential noise), a movie in the back of the van (pretty essential), a little toy radio that plays the same little clip of music over and over (should have been tossed in the garbage when we moved), 2 cell phones (both of which are not mine and were being used by the seven and nine year old because "the ring tones are cool").
  • 200: the number of times I was asked "are we there yet?"
  • 30: the number of minutes that all four youngest kids were asleep at the same time!!
  • 500: the number of times I questioned why I was doing this.
  • 5: the number of kids I ended up with at the end of the trip.
  • 0: the number of shots I need now that I'm no longer driving.
  • 3: the number of kids I'm glad I have permanently. I can't imagine any more than my wonderful three!!

Even though the trip down went well, please, please, please, don't encourage me to EVER do this again!!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Where's my brain?

I have been planning my annual trip to Salt Lake for some time. Normally I take all three kids by myself and Jason comes on the weekend. It is a long drive, but works well. This was the plan until last week.

Brother D calls and asks if I can take the boys for a few days next week so he and fiance J can go work on a tile job out of town. I say, "Well, I was going to leave for Salt Lake on Monday." (and then instead of just leaving it at that, I continue with no brain function at this point and say, "Why don't I just take the boys with me and you can meet us there on the weekend."

I will let that settle in for a minute.

I purposefully proposed that I would take FIVE kids all alone on a 10 hour drive.

Where the %$&*@ is my brain?

In my attempt to entertain five kids on the drive, I bought pipe cleaners (because that's fun, right? right?) and lots of snacks. As I was trying to find snacks that wouldn't melt, weren't too messy, likeable, etc. etc. I asked Papa Echo what he thought I should get. His one and only suggestion was CHOCOLATE COVERED ESPRESSO BEANS. He thought it would be funny to have a "pinball effect" going on in the van. Thanks, Papa Echo, you are so. very. helpful.

My kids are very excited to have their cousins for the drive. I have high hopes for a calm, smooth drive. But, in "reality world" I think I need a lot of luck.

Either that or a bottle of cinnamon schnapps waiting in Salt Lake.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Four Hours and Counting

The kids have been begging me to take them to a garage sale. As we passed one today, I reluctantly said that we would stop. The girls immediately found a couple of stuffed animals that they had to have. Jonathan spied "The Black Pearl". He reminded me that he still had birthday money to spend.

This has to be one of the BEST purchases in my garage sale career. All three have been playing with the boat and pirates (which were included!!) for the last four hours--non stop. No fights, whining, or teasing. I will literally have to pull them away from it for dinner in a couple of hours.

And I almost said no to the purchase request. Silly old, mama...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Keepin' Our Fingers Crossed

We have some good news! We were finally given an offer for our home in Big Timber. Closing is on July 1st. So, I have my fingers crossed that all will go smoothly and on time.

And, more good news! Papa Echo has started his own consulting firm. He still sends out resumes, but is finding that there is a need for contract project management. Click here for his new website. I'm thrilled because he can work on his own time schedule, he loves what he is doing, and we can stay here in Billings and not move again.

That's it for today. It's a little cold out, so I'm going to work on a puzzle with Alyssa and watch Bambi with Jonathan. Jessica is curled up in bed with a good book. (I don't know where she gets that from.)

By the way, if you want a great idea for the summer, head over to my friend Tif-do's site. This is a MUST-HAVE for anyone with kids that "get bored".

Friday, June 5, 2009

School is out!!!

Today was the last day of school and I for one am REALLY excited. No more running kids back and forth to different schools at different times. Next year, all three kids will be in the same school Yippee!!!

Jonathan building with blocks while he waits for his sisters to set up the carnival.

The kids have been planning this carnival for the past two weeks. Jessica sewed the "bullseye" without any help from me.

Ring Toss

(Too bad this picture shows the one part of my yard not landscaped yet. It's the side yard and I forget how ugly it is.)

Bean Bag Toss

Jessica, Jonathan, friend D and Alyssa in the "new" clubhouse.

The kids had to relocate the clubhouse to another part of the yard because a "mountain lion (me) tore through the last one and took out a wall. (pruned the bushes a little aggressively and ruined the hideout)."

It rained this morning and then was clear all afternoon until dinnertime when a storm came back in. I was glad they could get out and play. It's a good way to start summer vacation.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

If Only It Was That Exciting

I was reading a paper Alyssa wrote about "superpowers" she would like to have. She wrote that she would like to fly and all the reasons for that. And then, she said that she would like to have x-ray vision so she can see the movies her mom and dad watch after the kids are sent to bed.

I can only imagine what the teacher thought when she read that...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Why me?

I always thought that I would be very open with my kids and be able to smoothly and delicately answer questions regarding to "where babies come from", etc. My mom was always great with our questions because she is a nurse and has taught "that class" in elementary schools before. So, with that good role model, I thought I would be equally smooth.

I was wrong.

After the red face, and giggles, and murmers from me just thinking of the explanations that I would be forced to deal with, I explained to Jason that I would be in charge of educating the girls, and he would have to educate Jonathan.

I was wrong.

I have talked with the girls about "the subject" to the level appropriate for their age. I have also now talked with Jonathan, because he did NOT KNOW THE DEAL that I had made with Papa Echo, and asked me (while papa was taking a nap) where babies come from. I looked around and saw I was alone and then as smoothly as I was able to asked "you mean like baby pigs?" because they had just gone to the farm... He then explained, that no he wanted to know about people babies. I looked around again and still finding myself alone, then explained in a not so smooth way, but as simply (and truthfully) as possible where people babies come from.

Papa Echo so owes me!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

On the other hand...

Just so you all know, while I am excited, I'm so NOT like this... click here.

(she does have a "potty mouth" because of her excitement so don't watch if that will offend)