Friday, April 30, 2010

At the Dinner Table

I figure people probably want to hear about our dining experiences.  Considering how often we get stared at when we go out to eat. I like to imagine our dinners like that out of movie with all the kids saying "Yes, Father." and "Can you please pass the peas?"  When people compliment us when we are at a restaurant it adds to my delusion.  I quickly snap out of it though once at home at dinner time.

A small glimpse into our dinners here at home:

Me: "Someone get the baby off the table."

A1: "Little Monkey." As she  takes the baby off the table.

A2: "According to Darwin, we are all monkeys."

Me: "That explains alot."

I: "Owww I bit my finger!" cries hysterically into my shoulder as I try to stifle my laughter.

J1: "I don't like carrots.  Can I have something else?"

Me: "No."

Dh has yet to sit down as he runs around delivering all the plates with their special orders.  I am trying to feed a baby hell bent on climbing out of his hair chair. 3 more kids complain about some item on their plate.  2 kids decide they would rather forgo dessert than have to eat dinner. Requests are made for dinner tomorrow night, which elicits groans from half the kids.  Finally the dh gets to sit down and before he can even breath a sigh of relief the 3 yr old asks, "Wheres my water?"

Dh to me: "Did you hear about?...." Whatever that was in the news that day.  I shout back 3 times I can't hear him which is met with eyes rolling and him mouthing he will tell me later.  Which he never does because by the time the house is quiet enough to talk we forgot what it was we were talking about.

A2: "I got all the parts to my cog suit today."  No, its not a different language.  Its a game and we have to hear about it at every meal.

J2: "No fair!  I play more than you do!  I should get it."  A fight ensues and everyone ends up banned from the game for the next day.

Me to A1: "I bet you 50 cents that James can't eat his carrots without making a face."

A1: "Ok I take that bet.  I think he can do it."

All the kids in chorus: "Do it. Do it. Do it."

For the next 30 min J1 sits there and stares at his plate.  I'm not sure if he is building up the courage to eat the veggie or trying to make them disappear with sheer will power. Everyone else has eaten dinner and we are all waiting on him.  Finally in a fit of frustration, he eats his carrots.  He could have saved himself 29:30 min if he had just done that to begin with.  I end up with 50 cents because not only did he make a face his entire body contorted.

I clean the baby up, which entails an entirely new outfit.  A stack of dishes you can't see over needs to go into the dishwasher.  The table is so sticky that if you touch it you fear you might never come off.  The counters resemble what our house looked like after a tornado came through when I was 9.  And the dog is busy having her own dinner under the table.

And that is dinner at our house.  Everyday.  Some days are better than others: when we have pizza the house is silent.  Its the most peaceful night ever.  Some days are worse: if I make fish I have to do it on a day I got a lot of sleep. And heaven forbid we have company, because then all the kids and us are trying to talk to the poor soul at the same time.

So when should we expect you for dinner?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Viral article on Big Families

If you have already seen this article I apologize.  I know its gone viral, I have seen it all over facebook and forums.  Of course I hang around with a bunch of people who would repost this because they are that big green family so viral may only be viral to me.

Of course I am not Catholic (I seem to be saying that a lot lately) but the article is very good and helpful for anyone who reads the Bible.  One thing occurred to me while reading this, perhaps the reason we need to preach to families to be frugal and consume less thus being environmentally friendly is because they don't have big families.  If you don't need to watch every dime you spend you are more likely to buy stuff you don't need, buy new instead of used, and have more instead of less.
 

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Trust but Verify


Its true this saying can be applied, successfully, to almost all areas of life.  Including and possibly most importantly - Parenthood.  I could be talking about parenting advice, safety of toys and baby gear, OTC medications or academics.  But what I really a talking about is the kids themselves.

When "Have you cleaned your room?" is answered with a resounding yes, trust but verify.



When "You have to finish your peas before getting desert."  is followed by "I already did."  Trust but verify.



When you ask the kids if they put their clothes away and they look right in your eyes and say they did.  Trust but Verify:



I give them credit for this one.  It is in their closet and next to their dressers.  




Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Price of Love

Oh, the things we put up with because we love.

The Smells we must endure after your husband has eaten black beans from Chino. I will hold my breath every 10 minutes till sleep relieves me, because I love him.  I've developed a skill to breath through my mouth and close off my nose so as not to smell the myriad of scents emitted from my loved ones.  Its the price we pay, because we love.

The sights we can't divert our eyes from, because we love too much.  The bloodied forehead from a trip down the stairs, the swollen discolored broken toes and the multicolored vomit.  I wish I didn't have to look but I love them too much to turn away.

The sounds of retching I can hear a floor away, the screams and whines at all hours of the day disturbing my sleep and phone calls and concentration, the breaking sounds I hear virtually every day.  I wish I could tune them out, and perhaps I could if I so wanted, but I can't.  I love them too much not to pay attention.

The touches only a 1 yr old would think appropriate, the pinches and hair pulling the bouncing and boney butts grating my lap trying to see the computer monitor.  Sometimes I get touched out and wish they would be content just to nurse and not to pull, to sit and not to squirm.  But I love them so, I put up with it and am grateful the next time that they don't do that.

And my reward for my love, for paying the price, is a kiss.  A sloppy wet way off center kiss.  I will pay any price, deal with any inconvenience, smell all things foul, listen to every whine, see all things ghastly and fortify my body against everything a 1 yr old can throw at me because I love them.  Oh how I love them.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Dinner might be taking too long if...

Your son grabs hold a brick of cheese and just starts munching on it.  Thats 2 teeth marks there.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

More Blog Fodder

My 4 yr old was on a roll today, acting as comic relief.  He told the dh that "Heads are just big bumps, with faces smooshed on them."  Then while waiting for dinner was playing Tic Tac Toe and commented, "I played myself.  I lost the first game but won the second one."  My oldest said he has a great sense of humor.  That he does.

We went to a local book store to sign the kids up for their book club. I was waiting with the kids while the dh went to hand in the paperwork.  My 3 yr old brought me a magazine with a roasted chicken on the front saying, "I want chicken.  I want this chicken."  I told him he would have to wait till we left.   The dh then returned with  a bag containing a pencil case for each kid.  My 3 yr old asked the dh as he was given his bag, "Is there chicken in there?" He might have been a little hungry.

My oldest was assigned the task of making signs for our garage sale.  Not wanting to be left out my 4 yr old made some signs as well.  He said, "Know what I am gonna sell?"  I asked him what and he told me to look at his sign, which said, Momma.  I asked him, "You're gonna sell me?"  He said he was, then he asked me how to sell Joe.  How to do what now?  "Wait, you wanna know how to SPELL Joe?"  Yea, spell, not sell.  Silly momma.  He spelled Momma, he didn't sell me.  Momma made way too many logical leaps there.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Keep it Simple Sister

I got hooked on the new show "9 by Design". They make my children's name choices seem normal!  No, really I think they are hilarious.  I have seen them move twice now and I noticed something about each move.  They don't pack till the day of -  it seems like, anyway.  They move out quickly and get settled even quicker.  I am sure show editing really cut down on the time it seemed like it took, but if you look around their homes, they aren't cluttered.  They are open and organized.  There isn't stuff falling off of every shelf nor do they have stacks of crap on every counter.  Moving quickly is the result of not having a ton of stuff.  Imagine how nice it would be to move and not dread it.  To be able to move and get settled in right away like you had lived there your whole life.  Even if you aren't moving, imagine having less to clean, less messes and to able to find something when you need it.  Purging is the best way to do that.

When we moved 18 months ago I had gotten rid of most of everything we didn't NEED.  We sold off everything we could, but we had stuff we could not get rid of.  We are a big family so we require a lot of stuff.  10 chairs, 9 beds, tons of dishes and bedding, and we homeschool so we have a lot of books.  Still, we were able to move all of our stuff in 2 trips with a "moving" truck.  It wasn't really a moving truck but we used it for that purpose.  I had also been taking boxes over all week before hand with our dishes and other small items.  But regardless, it was the smoothest move I have ever had.  Even when It was just the 3 of us, this was the easiest move.   Yet, as easy as it was when I watch the family on 9 by Design move we pale in comparison.

I get a lot of questions about how we do it, I get asked for advice and I think the biggest suggestion I could make regarding sanity and cleaning is: GET RID OF STUFF.  Keep it Simple Sister.  The less you have, the less you have to clean.  Its simple.  Watch 9 by Design, look at how nice their house looks.  Notice how easy their moves are and convince yourself to get rid of stuff.

As for me, we are having a garage sale in the morning to get rid of stuff.  I have no idea how it happens but stuff breeds.  Suddenly we can't use our garage because people keep giving us stuff.  Now its time to purge and conquer my garage once again.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Bitter Homeschooler's Wish List

I have an infected impacted wisdom tooth.  So, since I am going through my day with only the thought, "Ow it hurts." running over and over again I will have to leave you all with someone elses thoughts.  Secular Homeschooling Magazines' The Bitter Homeschooler's wish list has just about every thought I have ever thunk when confronted with anti-homeschoolers.  I especially like #11.
11 Please stop questioning my competency and demanding to see my credentials. I didn't have to complete a course in catering to successfully cook dinner for my family; I don't need a degree in teaching to educate my children. If spending at least twelve years in the kind of chew-it-up-and-spit-it-out educational facility we call public school left me with so little information in my memory banks that I can't teach the basics of an elementary education to my nearest and dearest, maybe there's a reason I'm so reluctant to send my child to school.
I could probably add to the list if my brain was not lodged inside a tooth right now.  I think the throbbing is my brain trying to escape.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

If you aren't confused, you aren't learning

I don't know it all.  Shocking, right?  Here you thought I had it all together and figured out.  Nope, not by a long shot.  In fact I have no idea what I am doing.  I do know some things.  Like 2+2=4 and the Earth goes around the Sun.  But when it comes to parenting, education, organization, memory, and marriage - I am just trying to get through the day. 

My 7 yr old hates his science and history, not that he doesn't like to learn about them.  He does, he loves to go to museums and reenactments but he hates his school work in science and history.  Nothing I have done with him seems to help.  If it isn't interactive, hands on learning, he doesn't want to have anything to do with it.  He can't learn all he has to learn by going to reenactments and museums.  He has to read and write and do something.  He has me stumped.  I have no idea how to teach him. 

My baby will not sleep.  Ok let me be more specific, he won't sleep at night.  He sleeps fine during the day.  As soon as that sun goes down out comes Mr. Grump, who wants nothing to do with me or the dh or more importantly - sleep.  You would think after 8 kids I would have this bedtime ritual thing down, but he has me pulling my hair out.  We can't walk him, nurse him, have the tv on or off, have a night light on or off, in his bed or on the floor or on a hard surface or soft surface.  He cries about it all.  Come 10 am hes sleeping like a log though. 

Of course there is the odd problems here and there like my 9 yr old thinking the floor is his personal laundry basket, my youngest daughter being scared to death of her own teeth, my 3 yr old constantly walking outside with no shoes on getting prickers in his feet and mommy and daddy trying every trick in the book to correct the problem and falling flat on our faces each time. 

I pray, I search the internet for answers.  I read books and talk to other parents, I get lots of good ideas.  And it occurs to me, if I weren't confused, if I did know it all, I wouldn't be looking for different answers.  I wouldn't be learning and growing.  I wouldn't be searching and talking with people.  And as bad as I feel that I can't figure everything out, I feel that good knowing I am learning and growing every day.  And I hope when my kids have kids and I have this vast experience with 8 different types of fears and energy levels and quirks and flaws and traits and talents; that my kids can come to me and I can help them grow and learn.  Then when they find the answers for themselves, they will teach me ever more.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Monetary Monday - Free Field Trips

You get what you pay for.

There is no such thing as a free lunch.
Whoever coined those never met me.  Today the family visted 3, yes 3, museums and each and everyone was free.  Parking cost $2 at the meter, but the museums were free.  And they were actually worth the visit! You think free museum = cheesy one room displays, but you'd be wrong. 

Wells Fargo has museums in some of their locations.  We went to the one in Phoenix, cause you know thats where we live.  It would have been silly for us to go to the one in Alaska.  Anyhow, it was very educational and fun.  They had lots of displays for kids, rides and hands on material for all ages.  My kids really liked the working antique phone.



They were actually talking to each other.  They couldn't believe it really worked.  It was only a few years ago that I still talked on a corded phone, twirling the long (extra extra long) cord between my toes.  The digital age has engolfed us I guess. 

They had CSI material from the mid to late 19th century.  We think we have it rough today trying to find evidence.  I got every question wrong when it came to the Forensics section.  I think they were trick questions.   They had an actual morse code machine, an art museum, a place for the kids to get their faces on some money (my 4 yr old wanted to spend his), and several ride on games so the kids could see what an actual stage coach was like. 

Speaking of which, they had a real stage coach in the lobby. 



They said there would typically be 18 people and all their luggage crammed in this thing.  How they did it I have no clue.  Then to travel in it, on bumpy dusty roads, hour after hour with complete strangers in the heat with no windows! How the west was won indeed!  These were some tough folks. I can't even drive down town without air conditioning. 

They had a replica of a stagecoach with some dolls and luggage for you to try to do the clowns in toy car bit.  This is what we came up with:

Now, we figure everyone is gonna get jostled around anyhow, might as well start out sitting on each others laps and laying on top one another right from the get go. 

From the Wells Fargo museum it was only a short walk to the Phoenix Police Museum.  Home of the Miranda Rights.  They kids had way too much fun there.  We had to make them leave so we could walk back to our van and pay the meter before we ended up getting a personal visit from the Phoenix PD. 

When we first walked in the kids got to wear a police uniform and try out an actual police cruiser and motorcycle. 


Of course the museum also had the typical glass enclosed display cabinets with memorbilia and artifacts like badges and bullet proof vests.  There was replicas of jails and meter maids, but the thing that interested the kids most was the Memorial.  The memorial lists all the fallen officers and how they died, including the Police dogs.  It sounds morbid but the kids were full of respect and honest heartfelt sadness for the officers and their families.  

After the Police museum we had to head back to the van to drive down a few blocks to the Capitol Museum. I had NO idea it was going to be as big as it was.  4 stories.  4! And me scared of elevators.  Not all elevators, only tiny enclosed ones in buildings that are 100 years old.  I really didn't need to do my treadmill today, lets just say that. 

There was the Graditude Train exhibit that the kids really liked.  I had never heard of it before (you know these trips are as much education for me as it is for my kids).  It was gifts, mostly hand made items or toys from the French to the Americans in appreciation.  In the train was hand made wedding dresses, one for each state.  In the hopes they would be worn by an American bride in each state.  Arizonas was never worn.  The kids really liked the rooms on how a bill comes to pass.  There was artifacts from the Hoover Dam, did you know pipes used to be made from wood?!  No wonder we had such a problem with disease!  When people say sanitation has improved I would say: Heck yea! 

I encourage you to check around where you live for free museums and exhibits.  There was several we didn't get to that we will have to find time for later on.  The money we saved today we went out for dinner.  It had nothing to do with being exhausted after climbing and descending 4 flights of stairs.  Really. 

Friday, April 16, 2010

Clue

Having kids is like a living game of Clue.  But instead of Murder its what the kids have gotten in to.  For instance it would be:

The baby, in the pantry, with the bag of chips.

The preteen, in the dining room, with the paints.

The toddler, in the living room, with the squirt bottle.

The 6 yr old, in the kitchen, with the broken mug.  

Of course figuring out who did what is much easier in real life.  Kids aren't very good about hiding the evidence. Dhs though are a bit better at hiding the evidence:

Daddy, in the closet, with momma's shrunken shirts.

I have decided it was a conspiracy to get me to go shopping.  

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Words of Wisdom

Perhaps the best place to put a toilet paper holder is not on the side of the sink vanity.

If you have to suck the chocolate off the wrapper then you probably left it in your pocket too long.

When you are sneaking cheese, don't leave the slicer in the drawer in the fridge.

If you get dizzy spinning, then spinning with a baby will make you and him dizzy.  

If at first you don't succeed, yelling at the train tracks is not going to help any.

The key to breaking something is not to leave evidence behind and go hide.  Then I know who did it and what they did. 

Listening to your heart is not good advice for a 3 yr old as it frequently tells them things like, "Eat all the candy."

Just because you can't see the mess doesn't mean it didn't leave a sticky residue behind.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Pealin' The Tater

 As so often happens in large families, you do your own hair cuts.  Not that the children do their own, although that happens too, but we cut each others hair.  More specifically, the Dh cuts our hair.  He started out just by cutting mine, I wanted to donate it to Locks of Love and didn't want to go to a salon for it.  I had a bad experience the last time I went to a salon - 5 years ago now, if that tells you anything about the experience.  Turned out the dh did a bang up job on my hair and I got many compliments.  Then my daughter wanted her hair done.  Pretty soon the dh figured he could do everyones hair, he had seen the boys get their hair cut enough times to know how to do it.  So he bought himself a kit and has been doing their hair ever since.

Aside from the obvious financial benefits reaped from cutting your own hair, you also learn a skill.  Its obviously a worthy skill to have seeing as how much people pay to have their hair done. My dad also cut all of my brothers' hair, as well as his own - no one mention the gash in the back.  He even did mine once.  Best 2 hair cuts I have ever had - my husband and my father did it.   Seriously. 

With his tater pealed.  The dh's boss said that to him once and I think its hilarious. These kids really gotta stop growing, he looks like a little man.

Before and After.  She had 12 inches cut off.  Its going to Locks of Love. 

Don't you love my mini blinds in the back ground?  I have never seen such cheap mini blinds in my life. However to make the story more interesting rather than; "They broke when I opened them", I will say..."Yea the kids got scared when dh pulled out the clippers and tried to escape."

Monday, April 12, 2010

My Very Own Forgotten Bookmark

If you don't follow Forgotten Bookmarks you must stop on over there for a visit.  Its a lovely blog.  Anyway, onto my bookmark.  Last week my father brought over a box of books for my kids.  I opened up a book to read it to my 3 yr old and found the bookmark.

Found in "Our Happy Ways - Reading for Living" (why isn't there an underline button?)  The bookmark says "Jack read books beyond his years, now hes president of Sears." And check out the old 5 digit phone number.

Disclaimer: I am not getting anything from forgotten bookmarks, don't know the person who runs it, and he doesn't know I am posting this.  I just know a lot of people read it and since I found my very own forgotten bookmark I thought I would share.

Oh yea, I am actually using the bookmark. 

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Physics Lessons in your Freezer

Have you ever seen this in your freezer? We've been seeing them for a few years now and curiosity finally got the best of me.  I had to figure out how this happened.  The way I knew how ice formed (freezing from the top down) precluded this from happening.  I was thinking perhaps air pockets would burst and push water upward.  New air packets would find the same route and water would freeze on top the previous.

Well here is how it really happens.  I knew it couldn't be from water dripping down, because the icicles were formed at an angle.

Basically sheets freeze towards each other creating an inverted triangle. The heat then pushes the freezing water upward.  But the conditions have to be perfect for this to happen.  Open the freezer too early and you will stop the growth, use too warm of water and it never happens. 

Proof once again homeschooling happens all the times, in every day life.  You can't escape it.  Speaking of which...I had a proud homeschooling moment yesterday at the zoo.

A docent was sharing with some zoo goers about the elephants that live there.  He asked if anyone knew the different between Asian and African Elephants.  Do you know the difference? My 10 yr old did.  She raised her hand, much to his surprise and she said, "Asian elephants have smaller head and ears.  They also have a different shaped back. "  The docent stood amazed and speechless.  The rest of the crowd had their eyes fixed on my daughter and I wanted to yell, "And shes homeschooled!" When the docent asked I knew my kids knew the answer, but even I was surprised when one of them raised their hands to answer the question.  I was more proud that she was willing to share than that she actually had an answer.  I would have just sat there, pretending to be learning. 

The genius herself. Here we are looking at a parrot. 

Friday, April 9, 2010

Life - in a Day of a Mom

I've had what a veteren mom would call "One of those days".  Its not 'A Day in the Life of a Mom'.  It is the Life of a Mom - in one day.  Its all those things about being a mom, jam packed into (so far) 10 hours.   Blogging it is more theraputic and probably more healthy than drinking it away (although I do have a glass of wine waiting for me).

7:30 - I wake up to my 10 yr old and my 4 yr old fighting about wether or not we should teach the bird to say "poopy butt".  I had a feeling this would set the tone for the rest of the day.  When you have done this for a few years you get a good feel on how days are going to go as soon as your eyes open to the new day.  My instincts did not fail me. 

10 am - I have now gotten everyone dressed, fed, started school and done 20 minutes on the treadmill.  I have sat down to write an article (about stuffed pigs of all things, not the food- the toy), my mother has called to ask about shopping and I haven't gotten to shower yet.  Actually, if you must know, I am still in yesterdays clothes.  The neighbor knocks on my door to ask to use my phone.  I let her, and her daughter runs in the house to play with the kids.  She then has to retrive her kid and I am quickly glancing around hoping it isn't too much of a mess.  On the way out she says, "I figured none of the other neighbors would be home but then I remembered you are always home."  Nice.  It wasn't till an hour later that I realized I have not brushed my hair, I stank to high heaven from being on the treadmill and not having showered and I was wearing my housewife get up.  And here I was worried about the house. 

12:30 - The baby finds a crumb from my Fiery Habenaro Doritos on the floor and eats it.  At first I thought he was just mad at me.  Then he started drooling and pawing at his tongue.  Well maybe this will teach him not to eat stuff off the floor?  I doubt it.  He stopped crying after I nursed him.  He went down for his first nap and I finally got to shower.  As soon as the water hits my body my 7 yr old is outside my door, "Momma!"  I realized where I went wrong.  I announced I was going to go shower now.  I should have said something like, "I am going to go find you more school work."  I would have had HOURS to myself.

2:00 - The dh calls to chat and not 2 minutes into the conversation the baby knocks over my glass of water all over my desk.  I try not to get too upset, I figure this is God's way of saying my desk needed to be cleaned.  I soak it up and have a nice sparkling desk in a few minutes.  Not five minutes later my 4 yr old asks me if he can have a banana peal to play with.  I told him no, he can not put a banana peal on the floor.  He said, "Just in the garage."  Yes, because slipping out there wouldn't hurt at all.  I looked at the timer on my phone.  12 minutes.  The dh and I have talked for 12 minutes and I have already argued with my 4 yr old about banana peals and cleaned up a spilled cup of water from my desk.  If ever there was a reason for date night, this would be it.

3:30 - I have nursed the baby for 20 minutes during his second nap, in our bedroom.  I come down stairs to find my 6 yr old, my 4 yr old and my 3 yr old all with wet towels smacking each other with them.  Someone has spilled Apple Juice on the floor of the kitchen and there are toys strewn everywhere.  I sent the kids upstairs to change, but no one did.  I guess they liked to be soaking wet.

5:00 - I greet the dh at the door then proceed to change a diaper.  Minutes later the Dh and I walk into the kitchen at the same time, I find a top and spoon to the nutella and he finds the light switch covered in it.  The door to the pantry is locked and my 3 yr old is no where to be seen.  I get my camera ready for this. 



I guess the spoon was just not fast enough for him. I will add this to my growing pile of "Things my son was covered in" photos.

6:00 - As I am writing this my I hear "Oh Ewan!" from the kitchen.  Where apparently he dumped out a can of diced tomatoes we were going to use for dinner. Instead we got to clean it up from the counter, stool and floor. I think we will throw it out instead.

If you have ever read an account of a mother's day and thought it must be fictious, rest assured, Its not. I am beginning to think I should get this stuff on video.  No one is ever gonna believe me.  Although, bright spot, I have never laughed so much before!

So, what was your day like?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Silence

Silence is the absence of movement. So if your children are being quiet the thought would be there is lack of movement.  And lack of movement is never good.  You might find them with their hand in their diaper playing with the contents - you can infer what you will from that image. Maybe you will find them trying to dislodge whatever it is they just stuck up their nose or in their ear.  Or they might be trying to hide whatever it is they just got into.  The last of these scenarios is frequently the case at our house.  The Dh remarked that we have more photos of my 3yr old covered in stuff than not.  I'll let you be the judge.  Does this seem like a lot of pictures of  one kid covered in stuff? 

Blue Frosting? who knows.

Peanut butter, his favorite. He was often covered in this. Flour, That was fun to clean up. Lipstick, the kind that does not wash off. Not to be outdone by the fingernail polish on his face. He did try to paint his nails though.
He likes blue.  Remember the blue paint from a little while ago?

I don't know, but I think maybe silence isn't all that its cracked up to be. I think I would rather them be loud and obnoxious so I know what they are up to.  Silence is not golden, unless its the form of peanut butter all over your toddler.  Usually its multicolored: red, pink, white and blue, but mostly blue.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Picture of the Day - Arm's Length

Saw this in the mall, gives new meaning to "At Arm's Length."  My kids love Manikins.  They more detailed the better.  They don't like the ones without heads and the ones with tvs for faces freak them out. Going to the mall with them you would think they were Manikin critic.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Monetary Monday - Birds and Dryers Oh My

There is a tube, it comes out the side of the house.  It has a flap.  You would think it has a flap so that stuff can come out but nothing can go in.  Logic would conclude that anyway, since why would you need a flap if nothing was coming out?  Why have a tube at all right?  Well, apparently there is a tube, that comes out the side of the house and it does nothing.  We thought it was for the dryer.  The one at our old house looked just like it and it was for the dryer.  Nope, not this one.  The dh got up there to get the bird out only to realize it does not in fact go to the dryer. Still we had to get the bird out.  Apparently the bird had propped that flap open, thats how it got in there. 

This was after he removed the cover.  And yes, my dryer is on the second floor.  Apparently the hose goes out the roof.  No kidding.  And yes, that means that the dryer is in fact broken and not clogged with a bird. 
The Dh used a wire to pull out the nest since the hole was too small for our hands.  This is the remains.  Inside my 4 yr old was screaming that there were bird feathers floating down in the bathroom.  The bathroom on the main floor.  Where in the world does this tube go? 
This is what is left over.  The Dh got a new cover for it so hopefully there will be no more birds in there.  We still have no idea where it goes or what it does.  My guess, is that it goes to the bathroom fan.  Just cause bird feathers were coming down in there.  But there is turns in the tube so unless we put a camera in there we won't know where it goes. 

So, now I have to buy a new (to me) dryer.  I think I can get one for $50.  I still don't have a high chair either.  Who wants to go shopping for me?  I have the cash, but lack the desire.  Who needs clothes anyway? 

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Fools Day?

You would think this was an April Fools Joke.  Cause it certainly doesn't happen any other day of the year. 

Last night the dh was throwing stuff in our trash can on the side of the house, when he realized there was no air coming out of the dryer vent.  And yes, the dryer was going at the time.  That would explain why the dryer hasn't been working.  It runs but the clothes don't dry, which is kinda the whole point of a dryer.  So the dh gets the ladder out and a flash light and looks inside the vent.  And what does he see?  2 eyes peering back at him. 

Whatever could it be?  A giant spider ala Shelob?  A kitty cat lost her way?  Rodents? Nope, wrong on all counts.

We have birds living in our dryer vent.  For real.  Birds like us, a little too much. I knew we have some living in the overhang on our bedroom, I can hear them in there.  I never once thought we could have birds living in our dryer vent. They probably crawled up there one day when the dryer was going and thought, 'This is warm and cozy, I think I will have my babies here.'  Cause you know they weren't thinking 'I might get cooked in here.'  I continue to believe the term "Bird Brain" originated from someones observations, much like these I think. 

Now we have to figure out how to get these birds out of there.  I can not wait to have a dryer that actually dries again!  Any ideas?  Aside from calling the rental agency to get them to send someone?  Cause it only took 6 mos to get them to fix the tile on the roof.  I'm thinking we snake the vent.  Not with a real snake, good lord.  With one for the toilet.  Cause you know, on this fine April Fools Day, that would make perfect sense.  Its only 9:30, how much weirder is this day gonna get?  And yes, I will be sure to get pics.