Friday, May 17, 2013

Chachacha changes!

We've been working on a little project over here that has little to do with home improvement but a lot to do with why I haven't had the energy or ambition to write anything or do any home improvement lately.
Baby number 4 is due to arrive around November 19th and we're very excited. I hope that now that morning sickness has passed I can share a few pictures of what I have managed to do around here lately and then get working on some new projects. There is a bed to be built very soon before I get too big to want to haul around heavy boards. But first I really need to clean my house because my poor family has been living in filth the last few months while I laid around like a lump of uselessness. I'm not good at being pregnant or being in labor but we make such amazing children that we just couldn't stop at 3.

Thanks for not abandoning me during my lack of posting. I might do better. I'm not great at follow through so I make no promises. :)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Crockpot magic

I have this habit of just throwing a bunch of stuff together for supper and then my whole family loves it and thinks it's delicious and I can't remember a single thing I used. It happens with pasta and roasts and chicken. Of course there are super supper fails too so I can't just depend on always throwing together something wonderful. So I'm going to try to record some of my expiraments here and maybe I'll even come back and tell you how they went and post a photo or two.

Today's supper is going to be a pork roast with mashed potatoes and lima beans. I took a pork shoulder picnic roast and rinsed it well and threw it in the crockpot. I mixed together 1 cup of water, about 1/4 cup soy sauce, about 4 Tbsp A1 steak sauce, 3 Tbsp red wine, some jarred roasted red peppers, and a small handful of sun dried tomatoes. I poured that all over the roast and set it to low where it will stay for about 8 hours.

I know that the soy sauce and A1 are a safe bet but I'm a little worried that the red peppers and tomatoes won't go in the direction I'm trying for. We'll see I guess. With a roast you can always cover it in BBQ sauce or ketchup if it isn't amazing and nobody will know the difference. I mean, that was totally your plan all along. BBQ sauce covers a multitude of sins and salt makes mistakes taste good.

What's for supper at your house? Do you even eat supper or is it dinner or something else? My dad eats breakfast, dinner, supper, and anything in between is called having a little lunch. I eat breakfast, lunch, supper, and snacks because most people understand what those words are supposed to mean and dinner is just too confusing.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


I've made it my goal lately to drink a full 64 ounces of water every day. It is not unusual for me to go an entire day without having anything at all to drink so this is a HUGE change for me. I've been hounded my entire life by my dad to drink more water and now by my husband but a long string of UTIs has finally convinced me that I need to get serious about this.

The best tips I can give if you also struggle with staying hydrated is to buy a 32 oz bottle. Sort of like this (affiliate link is just to illustrate the type of bottle I mean, I got mine as a free giveaway at an Ag show).Nalgene 32 oz. Narrow Mouth Loop-Top Bottle BPA Free (Google Affiliate Ad) It makes it soooo much easier to remember how much water I've had to drink in a day. Very few people actually know how many ounces of water they drink because they use regular cups and glasses and then you lose track of how many times you've filled it. Most people don't really have to think about it too much because they have this affliction they call thirst. I don't seem to ever have that. I think I'm broken.

So yeah, making it idiot proof helps. Also a lot of Crystal Light and SO many trips to the bathroom.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

to my 16 year old self

Here's another post in my series on things I want my kids to know someday. My oldest daughter is going to be 10 this year and it's starting to become so very real to me that she will one day be more than a child. Someday she'll be friends with people who are doing drugs and having sex and *gasp* going to church. She's going to be introduced to things outside my realm of control and she's not going to take my word as the TRUTH anymore. Shit is too real y'all.

Tens things I would love to tell my 16 year old self (that she wouldn't even hear because she'd be too busy doing her own misguided thing)
1. You are beautiful! You do not need to make boys want you because they already do and you are trying too hard and attracting the wrong ones.
2. You will one day miss all of this. You will long for the freedom of your little red car and driving down dirt roads to go to the swimming spots and walking outside at 3 am in the summer and flirting with new boys and going home to a place you are loved and belong and don't have to clean.
3. Your parents don't know what the hell to do and could probably use some reassurance that you're going to be just fine. They think you're going to die in a gutter after a lifetime of bad choices. They are afraid for you.
4. You're doing okay kid. You are a good friend and a good employee and a good student. You work hard for your grades and your money.
5. If he doesn't take you on a real date, to a place in public where you spend time together, maybe even have a meal or see a movie, you are not 'together' and he is not worth your time. If he can't afford to take you out he should make you dinner or rent a movie and make popcorn.
6. Dream big! MIT is not out of your reach if you truly work towards it. Acting is not an impossible dream and will someday happen for you. You have all the gifts you need to be amazing at life, just believe.
7. Thank people more. Tell people you love them and thank them for spending time on you. Your physics teacher deserves to be told how much he impacted your life. Your brothers could stand a thank you for the times they go out of the way to be awesome. So many people do so many things for you and everyone around you and they don't hear it enough.
8. Exercise. Start now because it will be harder to start later.
9. Pick your friends better. If they don't take care of themselves (mentally, physically, educationally) they won't take care of you.
10. Talk to everyone! People are so interesting and you will need the practice making new friends. Make sure you spend less time talking and more listening. You can find something to like about everyone but don't waste your time with those who are toxic to you. If being around someone puts you in a bad mood, walk away.

I'm going to try to take a few pictures around here so we can get back to some actual home improvement type stuff. I haven't been able to do too many big things until recently because we've been super broke but I'm getting back on the wagon train.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Legit fears

I found a list on Pinterest called 30 Things my kids should know about me and think it's a great idea. I'm going to steal some ideas (hopefully that's okay) for blogs posts and some will go in my journal if they wouldn't be interesting to the general public. Please link to your blogs if you answer the same questions or just tell me in the comments. Today's topic is 3 legitimate fears.

#1: I am terrified of the dentist. I get anxious and tend to cry for about two weeks leading up to making an appointment and then two weeks leading up to that appointment. This fear has several contributing factors. The first is that things in my mouth that don't belong there make me dry heave. I can't do mouth guards and had to quit soccer when they started to require them. I can't stand any strong flavors so I can't do flouride or even tooth polish. I can only stand regular Crest toothpaste because all the mint toothpastes out there make me sick and the crest took me many years to tolerate. The second HUGE reason is that when I was a kid, I was freaking out and crying and my dentist told me that if I didn't knock it off I would never see my mom again. You might think that my child's mind exaggerated this but years later I met a new friend and she told me that when she was a child, her dentist told her that if she didn't stop crying he would take her out to the woods and tie her to a tree with itchy ropes and leaves her there. Same dentist! The kicker is that this man had a daughter our age and one younger and they were both total sweethearts. Scarred me for life. Intellectually I know that he was just being a jerk and that no dentist is going to threaten me now but I'm terrified of them anyways. Having their hands in my mouth makes me so sick that I feel wrong for weeks afterwards. Like I've been violated in some way. Yucky.

#2: Big dogs. I have never had a bad experience with a big dog but my older brother got chased or bitten or something when I was young. I think part of my fear is that I can't fight back. The idea of hurting an animal is so abhorent to me that I can't even process the idea of kicking a dog that was biting me. I know that would be the solution but would I just let the thing gnaw on me until someone helped me? That's how I picture it in my head. Plus, teeth dude! Teeth are scary and dogs have sharp ones.

#3: Being dead or injured in some fashion and my younger kids being helpless. I am terrified of a car accident or stroke or something where my kids are alone and can't ask for help. I really need to start training my preschooler to call daddy or to run to the neighbors' houses if she ever needed help. I just don't want to scare her because she's already afraid of silly things and this is such a remote possibility that I don't want her to worry about it needlessly. Sigh! Parenting is full of all these things where you can't go too far but you have to address it and it's so hard to walk that line without screwing up.

I'm sure I could think of many more fears that I have but these are the biggest and the ones that take up the most space in my brain. What are you afraid of? Anything that your intelligent brain tells you is stupid but your primal brain says FLIGHT FLIGHT FLIGHT?