Currently {August Twenty Ninth}

I know I've been absent this week. Just like last week...

But let's take a look at what I've been loving, cleaning, working, creating, and watching while I wasn't being a good blogger!

I have been loving watching my two year old grow!  Every day she says a new word and I'm amazed.  We've been working on using the potty for a couple of months.  She's had a few bumps and spends the majority of her time naked, but she is doing great!  At first, we purchased a Munchkin Deluxe Potty Seat at Toysrus that fits right on our toilet.  It was working, but she was having a hard time making it all the way to the bathroom and up the stool.  So I was doing A LOT of cleaning up pee.  I did a little reading on helping her learn when she has to go then I decided to buy her a potty chair.  There are some ridiculous chairs out there.  I opted to buy the Safety 1st potty.  It's basic, no frills.  No built-in toilet paper holders.  We placed it in the living room and... wow!  What a difference! The span of time between realizing she's got to go and actually getting to the potty is pretty short so having her own little potty so close has been working well.  She is so smart and independent.  She will take her potty and dump it herself and put it right back in the base.

I have been working on more baby gifts for my friend.  I can't say too much or post any photos yet because I want to surprise her.  I'm really excited though.  And not posting about it is driving me crazy!!

I bought my first Much Ado About You planner!  I love it!  Even the package it came in was too much cuteness!
maay planner
I knew as soon as I got it I was going to need to create a cover, but since I'd already forked over a butt load for the planner, I decided to make my own cover.  I measured twice, cut once.  Like a good carpenter... err, I mean seamstress.  I messed up a few things, a few times, but in the end I'm happy with it.


I started watching Orange is the New Black this week.  Totally addicted.  I can't wait until the next season.  I like it even more that it's on Netflix and I can veg out and watch the whole season in a week!

NEXT WEEKS THEMES:
GROWING, BUYING, EARNING, JUDGING, EMBRACING


Currently is a weekly feature hosted by Randalin of Harvesting Kale and Lindsey of OT and ET.

Dear Fatty McStuffins

Dear Fatty McStuffins,

From the beginning of your life you were a unique member of our family.  Do you remember that time all of your brothers and sisters fell into the bottom of the box your mom had you all in?  You just continued to nurse and nurse and nurse.  Until I discovered that they had fallen and rescued them.

You were twice the size of Cosmo and Wanda.  Poor little Tiny ended up looking like she was from another litter entirely compared to how big you were next to her.  Though you were still a cute little kitten.

That's how you got your name.  Fatty McStuffins.

Little kitty Fatty

I love how you used to always be there. Our guard cat.

Guard Cat Fatty

You were an all around great cat. We're all going to miss having you around. I'm glad we found you and were able to give you a proper farewell. I regret that I didn't find you sooner.

Rowan with Fatty

Until we meet again...

Currently {August Twenty Second}

Hello People of Earth!  And how are we this 22nd day in the month of August?

It's that time of the week again.  Time to find out what I'm currently doing!  Besides neglecting this blog.  Eek!  Do you sometimes just lack things to talk about?  Most people would tell you that I never lack something to say, but I'm trying to keep it real around here.  My life is pretty boring.  I'm not sure how stay at home moms who blog can make their lives seem so interesting and active.

So this is what I've been feeling, missing, running, visiting, cooking this week!

I have been feeling at a loss.  Both of our outside cats have disappeared.  No signs of them returning.  Since our male did return for a fleeting moment and was showing signs of sickness (lethargy, no appetite), I will venture a guess that they caught something ie. an animal of the small varmint variety (we live in the country) that made them both sick.

I am missing the energy I used to have as a younger person!  Shoo-wee... having a toddler in your mid-30's is not like having a toddler in your early 20's. =)  I will admit that I am very much out of shape and need to get with the program.

School is back in session and that means that we are running.  As any parent of an active kid in school (or homeschooled too!) knows, it's take me here, take me there.  Currently we are running to pick up our son from basketball practices.  Tonight we're headed to the middle school football game.  His girl is a cheerleader.  I'll be watching football, he'll be watching her.  *sigh*

I haven't been doing too much visiting.  I'm a homebody.  I enjoy my days at home chillin' in my comfies.  I tell myself all the time that I want to get out and do more, but then my body is all... why??

I cooked some more cereal this week.  It's a big hit.  So much cheaper than store bought cereals.  You can find the recipe here.  It's easy to make it your own as well.  This week I not only added almonds, but a few sunflower seeds as well. Next week, I'm going to try adding some dried fruit.

NEXT WEEKS THEMES:
LOVING, CLEANING, WORKING, CREATING, WATCHING


Currently is a weekly feature hosted by Randalin of Harvesting Kale and Lindsey of OT and ET.

Wisps of Gossamer

We've had some strange goings on around here lately.

Last week our 13 year old cat went missing.  She's 13 so by the third full day that we didn't see her, we thought maybe she had wandered into the nearby woods to be at peace.  Then my brain began to fall into suspicion mode.  Did a coyote attack her?  Did another wild animal?  Bear? Or wolf, because we apparently have these in south central/western KY now too?  Did someone steal her?  It has now been a full week and I still wish I could find at least a body so I could bury her properly.  

Then our other outside cat was gone.  He's a male so I figured he was just wandering.  Though he's never been known to do that before.

I went outside early Sunday morning.  Like I have every morning since our old cat disappeared.  The Sun was just starting to rise over the edge of the trees.

The sunlight was hitting these webs.  We have a whole colony of spiders living in our dogwood tree.  I was a little creeped out, but then I just stood there and looked.  They were beautiful.

spiders

The second cat, that had been missing for almost two full days, showed back up yesterday mid-morning.  He looked horrible.  He's always been a fighter.  We call him our guard cat because he chases off any and all other cats/animals.  He was barely moving, didn't come when I called to him, didn't eat any of the food I laid out for him.

This morning he was gone again.  None of the food had been touched.

But there were new, beautiful wisps of gossamer spider webs in the tree.  Reminding me of that whole Circle of Life thing...

Currently {V.11}

Currently is a weekly feature hosted by Randalin of Harvesting Kale and Lindsey of OT and ET.


THIS WEEKS THEMES:
SPENDING, SAVING, SPEAKING, GOING, SHARING

I have been spending all my time knitting!  I made this Nature Baby Kimono for my friend.  I was going to keep it until her shower, but I was so excited that I had gotten it done and that it looked good!  I took it to her early. Hee hee!  Then I immediately started on my next project.  Which is super secret until it's done.

I'm saving as much patience as possible.  Rowan has been showing signs of interest in using the potty for a while now.  As long as she is naked on the bottom, she will make it to the actual potty about 7 out of 10 times.  The other 3 times she will begin to pee, grab herself, say uh oh!, and run for the bathroom.  Occasionally she'll get all the way to the bathroom only to pee in the floor.  All over the floor.  I'm trying to be encouraging.  I'm trying to not get irritated having to wipe up pee from the floor a few times a day.  We originally purchased a seat that fits onto the big potty, but now I'm wondering if we should invest in a seat that is separate and sits on the floor.

I'm still speaking to my husband about less processed foods.  He might be asleep when I do it.  Subliminal messaging.

I'm going.  I'm not sure where I am going, but I know that I will get there eventually. =)

I'm sharing this little video of Rowan from our adventures outside in the beautiful weather yesterday!

Nineteen Ninety Three

Recently, an old classmate began teaching at our old elementary/middle school.  She has the daughter of another classmate in her class this year.  He decided to send in one of our old year books so she could laugh at us in all our adolescent glory.  It was through these photos of herself that she posted to Facebook that I found out she had lost her home years ago to a fire and subsequently all her yearbooks.

I have all of mine.  Kindergarten through Senior year.  I mentioned I could scan them all.  Just our class of course.  There were several, "Oh no, you betta not!" and several, "Do it! Do it!".

So I did.

My class.  Every year.  From Kindergarten through 8th grade.  I scanned and then posted them on Facebook.  To be tagged by all!  It was so great to look back at how we had all grown up from year to year.

But then...

1993
1993. Eighth grade graduation.  Theme = Under the Sea 

Here I am (bottom left) with my friends. Amanda, Chris (back right), and Robert (behind me).

I had known Robert practically my entire life. We both stayed with the same babysitter before we were even in Kindergarten. I'd known Chris since the 1st grade. He was my first "boyfriend". He even passed me a "check yes or no" note to see if I liked him. When Amanda started attending our school in the 5th grade, we hit it off immediately.

I sat and stared at the image. I hadn't seen it some time. Forgotten I had uploaded it. Every time I look at it, I feel a crushing weight. The tears begin to flow and I can't stop them.

I am the only living person left from that photograph. I'm only 34 years old.

Amanda was murdered in her home on April 6th, 1999. Leaving behind a 4 month old daughter who would never know her. Her killer was tried, but never convicted. She was 20 years old.

Chris was killed in an ATV accident in Florida on April 16th, 2007. I hadn't seen him in many years. The thought that my first crush was gone, really gone, was a lot to take in. He left behind a son and daughter. He was 28.

Robert. I saw him at least once a year at the annual Tobacco Festival. The big event that always brings everyone back to their roots. He never failed to give me the hug that meant we'd known each other forever. He never failed to smile. He killed himself on June 24th, 2012. He was 33 years old. There was no funeral. No burial. He was just gone.

His loss hit me harder than I ever thought it would. Maybe it was the feeling that I had lost a friend, maybe it was the way he left us.

Maybe it was that I felt like a lost a piece of my childhood forever.

Since rediscovering that old photo, I haven't stopped thinking about them. About moments we shared, funny stories. Twenty years it has been since we stood in the cafeteria and posed for our parents.

And I will never forget them.

Sabotage

My husband is a pain in my ass.  I love him, but he's a pain.  I made the mistake of taking him with me shopping this weekend.  

Every item that was organic or non-processed in any way was shot down.  Too expensive, he said.  Even though they were only a dollar or less more than the "conventional" items.  Last week, my food items only totaled $78.  We had food for the entire week.  In fact, we had food left over because NO ONE WOULD EVEN TRY the new recipes that I baked/cooked.  All it took was one stink eye look from the Dad and every one backed away slowly.  

At the store, he insisted that we must buy Hot Pockets for after school snacks.  Ugh.  They contain imitation cheese. Imitation?  Gross.  He at least conceded to let me get Lean Pockets instead.  And potato chips.  Like three bags of them.

I've made my views about getting rid of processed foods very clear, but it's just not getting through.  I feel so defeated.  I want to keep pressing the issue, but I also feel like I should just give up.  

I did have a few successes.  I made our own cereal and it was approved by the teenager.  I think I cooked it a little too long, but that's an easy fix the next time around.  I also made whole wheat waffles and muffins that were warmly received.  

Have you tried to switch up something in your house and been shot down by the other inhabitants?  Did you overcome it?

Currently {V.10}

Currently is a weekly feature hosted by Randalin of Harvesting Kale and Lindsey of OT and ET.


THIS WEEKS THEMES:
SMELLING, WISHING, LOVING, POURING, TALKING

Today is the first day of school here.  I am not a fan.  All of my FB friends are all excited and woo hoo'ing, but I'm kind of bummed out.  In years past, I've been happy when they returned to school, but this year it just feels like the Summer was extremely short.

Smelling the warmed up whole wheat waffles that I cooked earlier in the week and froze so they could have a nice warm breakfast on their first day.

Wishing that the Summer was just a little longer, that I had the patience to homeschool, that we could have taken a real vacation.

Loving that I'm almost finished with my first knitting project for my friend's baby!  So far I have learned how to do a decrease and an increase in stitches!  I want to post pictures, but I also want it to be a surprise.

Pouring myself too many cups of coffee.  Actually it's a cappuccino mix from Folgers.  If I'm going to make the switch to all "real" food, I'll have to drop using it.  It's going to be SO VERY HARD.

Talking to myself all night.  Not out loud, of course, but in my head.  I haven't been able to get a good night's sleep in a week.  My brain won't stop chatting itself up.

NEXT WEEKS THEMES:
SPENDING, SAVING, SPEAKING, GOING, SHARING

Old School Blogging

Apparently there is a meme going around the blogosphere.  Five questions with five answers.  I'm supposed to tag five others, but I'm not big on tagging people for memes so if you feel the hankerin' to do it, then yay!

Five Things I Have a Passion For:
  1. Family
  2. Sewing
  3. Knitting
  4. Coffee, cappuccino, java!
  5. Reading 
Five Things I'd Like to Do Before I Die:
  1. See the Grand Canyon (and to be honest TONS of other places)
  2. Celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary with my husband
  3. Camp on a beach
  4. Learn to swim
  5. See all my children graduate college
Five Things I Say A Lot:
  1. Rowan!! Stop that!
  2. Rowan!! Get off the cat!
  3. Rowan!! Get off the table!
  4. Mama loves you (Rowan), I love you sweetie (Kaia), unspoken I love you for the boy 'cause "Eww, Mom!  Stop it!"
  5. F*ck.  
Five Favorite Movies:
  1. The Godfather (Part 1 & 2 - the third one is awful)
  2. A Time to Kill
  3. Labyrinth
  4. The Princess Bride
  5. The Skeleton Key
Five Places I Want to Travel:
  1. Ireland
  2. Rome
  3. Dry Tortugas National Park (in fact, all the Nationals Parks!)
  4. Australia
  5. Safari adventure in Africa

Real Food for Real Families

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I was attempting a switch to "real" food from all the processed mumbo jumbo we normally eat.  The kids are heading back to school this week (Thursday) so I figured now was a good a time as any to transition.

I'm not making the official pledge just yet though.  We still have cabinets (and a deep freezer) full of items that I'm not just going to throw out.  I'm simply replacing those items with non-processed equivalents when it's time to buy them.

As a mother of three in a one income household, I understand how hard it is to buy the better food.  It's just easier to buy what's cheaper.  That's what I thought.  We normally spend an average of $125 (sometimes more, sometimes less) at the grocery store every week.  For us, "grocery" store is Wal-Mart.  It's not ideal.  It's not my first choice.  It's what we are stuck with.  We have an IGA close to our house, but their prices are horrible.  Horrible enough that we drive 30 miles to shop somewhere else.  I would love to shop at Whole Foods or Trader Joe's.  I would even be willing to pay a little more for better food, but those guys are in Nashville, 100 miles away.  Plus Tennessee has a sales tax on food.  Bad form, Tennessee.  Next week I think I will shop at Kroger (also 30 miles away) just to compare this weeks cost to shopping there.

I used one of the meal plans from 100 Days of Real Food.  Her total was $167.41.  That was shopping at a place called Earth Fare (we don't have those) and Trader Joe's with a 2% sales tax on food.  

My food total was $77.54.  

Much less than the original because, like I said before, I am working in the new non-processed food.  Some things I didn't buy:  rolled oats, rotisserie chicken, fish, sugar snap peas, sunflower seeds, honey dew melon, white potatoes, mushrooms, and fresh ginger.  Several items I had replacements for.  Some things (honey dew and sugar snap peas) I couldn't find.  One item, bok choy (never used that stuff), was only in a bunch that weighed about 3lbs.  I only needed 3/4 of a pound so I just snapped off what I needed.  I'm certain I wasn't supposed to do that, but honestly I didn't want to waste it.  

And while we are on the subject of weighing things... I weighed the bok choy on their scales.  It was close to zero before I put my goods on the scale.  They weighed just under a pound, but when I checked out, the register scale measured them as being 1.13 lbs. Maybe just coincidence, but one has to wonder.

I also realized that I forgot a few things.  However, I still think I could have purchased all the items for the same amount or less than what I usually spend and I didn't buy any processed food!  I will be so glad when I get rid of all the processed stuff!  It feels like such a weight lifted already.  

I'm so relieved that buying food that is good for my family CAN be affordable.

Post Crossing {Card 7}


From Finland!  Doesn't it look lovely?


Postcards Exchange

Gizoogle {Warning! Foul Language Ahead!}

Have y'all heard about Gizoogle?  It's a parody website where what you search for gets translated into gangsta slang.  For shizzle, y'all.  It's hilarious.  Fair warning, there are curse words.  Lots of them.

And movies = pornos.  It's like Mad-Libs with gangsta speak.

Yesterday I wrote a post about my book goal for the year.  Here is a screen shot of the Gizoogled version of that same post:

Please do click to enlarge the image so you can get the full effect. Then immediately go to Gizgoogle and search yo'self, yo.



2013 Reading Challenge Update

How in the world has it already become AUGUST?!  These days, these months, this whole year!  Whoosh... blowing on past us!

And I'm FIVE BOOKS BEHIND my goal of reading 25 books this year.  I still have 16 books to read before the end of the year.

I finished up the Mortal Instruments series a couple of weeks ago.  I had read the first book back in March of 2012, but every time I returned to the library to borrow the second book, it was never available.  I gave up and moved on, but with the impending movie coming out I wanted to re-read the book.  So I just bought all five.  Helped the goal a little!

Currently, I've just finished reading Beautiful Creatures.  This book is a clear example of how books are better than adaptations turned into movies.  I'll never understand why authors allow screenwriters to alter what they have written.  Smoosh characters together, change this, change that.  I-r-r-i-tating.  Good book though.  I'm starting the second book, Beatutiful Darkness, today.  I suppose I'll finish up this series before moving on to the next.

What are you reading?  Suggestions for what I should read next?

Currently {V.9}

Currently is a weekly feature hosted by Randalin of Harvesting Kale and Lindsey of OT and ET.


THIS WEEKS THEMES:
WATCHING, LISTENING, WRITING, LOVING, CREATING

Watching Soul Surfer.  Wow.  I had heard Bethany's story. Who hasn't?  But I'd not seen the movie about her until this week.  She is such an inspiring young woman!

Listening to the sounds of my husband mowing the yard.  Usually I enjoy doing that 2.5 - 3 hour job, but recently our yard (and ME!) have been over run with chiggers!  It seems they only like my blood because the others in the house aren't affected.  I put chiggers right up there with mosquitoes.  Why on Earth are they here?!

Writing, loving, and creating all go together this week!

The Universe works in such mysterious ways.  Sometimes she knows things that we don't and this week she delivered news of hope, endurance, joy, and laughter.  The imminent birth of a sweet baby girl in my family (not me though!) that I am already completely loving!  So to prepare for all the things I want to make for her, I've starting creating a new knit project that I am writing down the stitches and rows so I don't mess it up!  Which is bound to happen anyway because I'm so new to knitting!  I can't tell y'all just how super excited and happy I am for the new mama and daddy!

NEXT WEEKS THEMES:
SMELLING, WISHING, LOVING, POURING, TALKING