Saturday, August 30, 2008

Things happen for a reason, almost

Today when I showed up at the market, Gayla asked me if I could take her to go get some blood work done during the market. Normally I would have been able to but I had family in town that were going to come to the market with me and I WAS going to be leaving early. BUT those family members got stuck in Phoenix overnight and weren't coming in until 4 pm so I WOULD be able to take her after all!
Then, her doctor showed up and Gayla had some questions for her. It was noticed by Gayla that the wrong tests had been ordered so they rescheduled the tests for another time - next week I think. As of now, Claudia will be gone next week so she won't be taking my kids home so they'll go with us to the blood test facilities. An educational field trip!
I love homeschooling!


The election has now become interesting!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Quick update

One more family member arrives shortly - my sister Angie got here on Wednesday AM and her son gets here right now. We're actually waiting on his call to go pick him up at the airport.
Tonight 5 people will be getting off of their planes just before midnight, I'm not picking them up! We spent most of the day yesterday inside of the condo getting it ready for guests and discovering the hard way that the compressor on the air conditioner was broken. It was kind of fun since it was a great way to experience what life was like in Austin before air conditioning. Yeah, you sweat a bit more but as long as the ceiling fan was on and we had cold water to drink it was comfortable to lay around reading books and listening to the kids play the electronic keyboard all afternoon. It was nice.
gotta go!

All guests should give thanks to Joe for fixing the a/c that same afternoon so that they didn't have to sleep in those 'Austin of old' conditions!

Monday, August 25, 2008


Yes, today was the annual Not Back To School Pool Party. It was the first day of public school here and in a very kind way we homeschoolers like to gloat about the fact that we aren't stuck inside an institutional education building on this day that is very much still in the middle of summer. About 100 moms and 300 kids usually attend this giant pool party that's always held on the first day of public school in the middle of the day at one of the few City pools that stays open during the week after the ps school year begins. Unfortunately, the party got rained out in hour 3 - thunder & lightning don't mix well with a pool full of kids. But that's OK, the food had all been eaten by then anyway.
We're starting school next Wednesday, after all of our guests have gone back to their homes.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

another day, another chore

Today it was Mowing in the Rain.
Still have to do the laundry.
Got the bed frame put together in Giselle's room-to-be.
Cleaned the blinds and windows in the same room.
Bought a bed for the same room but it won't be ready for pickup until tomorrow evening.

Tomorrow is the annual Not Back To School Pool Party, pictures at 2.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

playing in the rain

We spent 2 hours playing in the pouring rain Friday afternoon the kids were running and jumping and sliding all over the place at the park. Paul is getting to be a pretty good soccer player - good blocking skills when playing goalie and getting better about stealing the ball when I'm on offense - we were playing one-on-one while at the park in the rain.
I LOVE playing in summer thunderstorms! Everyone was soaked and for once we weren't the only family willing to stay and get wet.
Dinner was hot chocolate and cold tortellini.
I'm still on a break for another week and a half. Joe, hurry up and get me that QuickBooks information before I have guests to entertain!

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Ballet went well. It's SUPER close to home. We got new ballet shoes and a black leotard on Sunday. I sewed the straps on the shoes on Tuesday morning. The class seems to be challenging and that's the way I want it to be. This year she'll actually need to practice between her lessons. Hopefully she'll make friends with the girls and expand her friendship circle to include girls her own age.

I contacted the local Girl Scout council to find us a Brownie troop this year. I tried more than 5 times last year to find her a troop via email and no one ever got back with me enough that we actually found a troop. I'm using the phone this year and I hope to have better success.

Public school starts next week so it's our last chance to play with those kids during the daytime.

Claudia and the boys came over yesterday and we had a big dinner here last night. Shrimp scampi, rice pasta, pasta sauce w/ meatballs and baby greens salad w/ veggies. For dessert there was ensalada de fruita fresca con mil para los ninos y para us grown-ups a piece of tres leches cake from Whole Foods to share.

The 14 year old dog went to the vet for her annual checkup yesterday and got a clean bill of health. She got a thumbs up for loosing 3 lbs since last year and the vet would be happy if she lost another 3. The dog and I both need to start going on regular walks again so that we can get in better cardio-pulmonary shape.

Gotta run, Paul's angry at ME since the boys next door are not home to play with and his other friend around the corner doesn't want to play AGAIN!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


The new season starts today!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday Seven #26

Whipping out a quickie Sunday 7, this is number 26 for me.

Seven things that I am thankful for this past week ending August 16, 2008:
1 - My love of 20 years, Joe.
2 - Good friends to share numbers 3 and 4 and 5 and 6 and 7 with.
3 - Bottles of wine.
4 - Swimming pools.
5 - Local lakes.
6 - Personal watercraft.
7 - California Wonder bell peppers and Costa Rican melons.

Friday, August 15, 2008

20 years and counting

Twenty years and 1 day!
I hope that the next 20 are just as event-filled as the first 20 were!

"Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch You know that I love you. I can't help myself, I love you and nobody else."

"Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right; here I am, stuck in the middle with you."

"Like a river flows surely to the sea, Darling so it goes, Some things are meant to be. Take my hand, take my whole life too. For I can't help falling in love with you."

And I know that your response is this:
"Ooo. you make me live.
Whatever this world can give to me
It's you, you're all I see
Ooo, you make me live now honey, Ooo, you make me live.
You're the best friend that I ever had.
I've been with you such a long time
You're my sunshine.
And I want you to know That my feelings are true,
I really love you, You're my best friend."
"In rain or shine You've stood by me girl
I'm happy, happy at home, You're my best friend.
You're the first one When things turn out bad.
You know I'll never be lonely.
You're my only one And I love The things that you do, You're my best friend.
Ooo, you make me live.
I'm happy, happy at home
You're my best friend You're my best friend
Ooo, you make me live
You, you're my best friend."

Happy 20th Anniversary Joe, I'm gonna love you for ever & ever, for ever & ever, Amen!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


This evening Joe took the kids and me Jet Ski-ing out on the lake for the first time. Well, it was the first time ever for the kids and the first time in 15 years for me. 'Uncle' Chris came along with his Ski to join in the fun and Christian was with us too.

Giselle and Joe were the first to go out on the Bombardier Sea-Doo, aka The Couch. She and Paul both were driving this themselves by the end of the evening; Joe or I was still sitting behind them but they were doing the steering and throttle themselves. WAY TO GO!

And here is Paul and 'Uncle' Chris on Chris' Ski. Paul climbed on and stood right up like he'd been doing it for years. I guess all that practice pushing the shopping cart has paid off.

Speaking of standing up, when it was my turn on one of the stand-up Skis, I tooled around kneeling for a few minutes, then went to a half stand for another minute and then stood on up. I blasted around the lake for 10 min or so then came in with wiggly arms. I never fell, not even once. Not bad for my first time riding in 15 years! The grown boys were impressed and I was proud of myself. Of course there were no pictures of THAT!

We'll be sure to do this again SOON! Paul couldn't stop yelling "This is SO AWESOME!" the whole time and Giselle never stopped smiling. Paul found a rusty open-end box wrench and Giselle found a LOT of pretty rocks that she brought home.


Thanks Joe! We could call that a 20th anniversary gift and I'd be satisfied just fine.

Friday, August 08, 2008

just when my stats were looking good...

I've got family-business business to take care of that I really need to concentrate on over the next couple of weeks, followed by a lot of family coming to town for the Labor Day weekend. I'm even giving Giselle a vacation from school until after Labor Day to help clear my daily plate.
So over the next 3 and 1/2 weeks I'm going to be pretty irregular in my posting here. I'll post when I've got time but certainly not daily like it has been.
See you when I see you!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

I'm always awake enough for Sci-Fi

Well, almost always.
Joe just called, he was out mailing accounts receivable, and he dropped by Blockbuster on the way home to see if any of the checked out copies of the new Stargate SG-1 movie had been returned yet. Well one copy HAD been returned and now Joe is coming home with it for us to watch instead of me going to bed to prepare for our day at the water park tomorrow.

Oh, he's here! Gotta go!

Do you remember the days when they used to charge you money if you didn't rewind the video tape? I'm so glad about DVDs for that reason! Although I seem to get an average of one unreadable/damaged disc per every 6 that I rent and it's a bit aggravating when it's the main one that you wanted to see. Stargate is free tonight due to Toy Story 2 being unplayable.


Too busy dealing with insurance all day to make a post - not making claims, just updating policies.

And this evening we were busy at a Biscuit Brothers show.

Oh, did I tell you? Giselle spent the night at Jessi's last night and made it all the way until 11:30 this morning!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Tapioca Pudding Re-dux

We made tapioca pudding again yesterday but this time I put some pureed ginger into the milk when I added the tapioca balls (I just read what I typed and first I had typed 'garlic' instead of 'ginger' - now THAT would have been gross!). I had a feeling that doing so would help infuse the balls with some flavor and I was correct. I waited until AFTER the tapioca had totally cooled before I added the strawberry puree (again) and this time it stayed red instead of turning slightly brown like last time. I added so much that it's too fruity for Giselle (TOO FRUITY? Who's kid is this?) but Paul is really enjoying it.

Paul fell asleep on the way home from the grocery store yesterday (6 pm) and slept through until 1:30 when he needed to go pee and I reminded him that he hadn't eaten supper. So we got up and he ate his cold spaghetti w/ sauce and a whole lot of tapioca pudding. He had some more for breakfast this morning until Giselle told on him and I made him put it away.

Monday, August 04, 2008


Paul is helping me make meatballs this morning while Giselle sits on the sofa reading her book about a pioneer girl making the trek to Oregon in the 1860's. Homeschooling at it's best!
Next time I'll make her take the pictures while Paul and I cook.

My Meatball Recipe (this time)
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground Jersey bull (the last of him)
1 1/4 cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
about 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce
5 cloves of garlic put through the press
1/4 cup of Italian seasoning ground in my hand
a bit of salt
lots of freshly ground pepper (on fine)
1 egg
about 3/4 cup of grated and crumbled Parmesan cheese

Paul mixed together all the ingredients in a large bowl except for the meat. When it was all mixed I put the meat in and combined by hand until fully incorporated. Then Paul and I made 1-inch balls by hand and put them on the toaster oven tray that was lined with parchment paper (parchment paper is one of the greatest inventions of all time!). I'm cooking them in the toaster oven on 450 for 10 min and boy are they sizzling away! First tray is done, time to transfer them to the cooling rack, make more balls and get the second load in the oven.

Once this is done we can start on spelling.

this made 138 aproximately 1-inch meatballs

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Sunday Seven #25

Sunday Seven - a post in which one usually gives thanks for things that happened in the past week but also can be used to list seven things about a specific noun (person, place, thing or idea) that we are thankful for.

1 - That we safely got to the Farm and Houston and back again.
2 - That the Vietnamese food wasn't too far off from the Asian food we are used to.
3 - That the beach was clean and not crowded and my kite flew for a little bit.
4 - That we at least got to play in the water park pool for 30 minutes before it closed.
5 - That the Houston Zoo wasn't too crowded and the gift shop wasn't terribly overpriced.
6 - That Joe managed to feed the dog daily and not kill any of my plants while we were gone.
7 - That our dog has finally gotten over the fact that I left for 5 days to play with 11 Yorkshire Terriers and 8 Boston Terriers.

Leave a link to your Sunday Seven in the comments, or even easier, just write up a quick list and post THAT in the comments.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Carnival of Kid Pictures #2

Time for another Carnival of Kid Pictures and I'm a day late AGAIN! My excuse is that Fridays are just too full for me to remember to take care of posting the kid's pictures, especially THIS Friday. The morning after returning from our trip we had a 10 o'clock appointment with an insurance agent who showed up at 9 instead - fortunately I had changed out of my pajamas already but none of us had had breakfast. Then at noon the windshield repair guy came to fix all the chips in the windshields of our 37 cars. Then I had to prep for and go to the park, hang out and talk to friends, then rush home and get the kids cleaned and fed so that I could go to an Usborne books party (think Pampered Chef party but with kid's educational books).

Back to the main point of this post - Carnival of Kid's Pictures #2!

These are some pictures that I found on the memory card in Paul's camera after he had left the camera outside overnight IN THE RAIN.

A kitchen chair from under the table with dog bowls and moc-crocs in the background.

A view of the kitchen obstructed by a Mexican blanket.

Paul's trike through the variegated hibiscus and his mint.

I'm impressed by the composition of this shot - a very cool view of the see-saw and his swing.

Self-portrait of the artist and a cool view of the trees.

Go and take a ride on Karen's blog to see her pictures and the links for all the other carnival participants. Then, post some of YOUR kid's pictures on your blog and put your link on Karen's page so that others can enjoy. You could put your link here too if you want.

P-Dub Sightings

It's not like I go out much so it's highly UNlikely that I'd see her anyway, but Ree is in town currently tending to her sister and her newborn baby so there's more of chance to see her in person than if she was still at home in Oklahoma. I just wanted to let y'all know that I did NOT see her at the Farmers Market today, in case you were wondering. Although she would have been able to get some great beeswax products and some of that garlic salt that I'm always raving about if she HAD showed up there today.

Saturday Six

Six things that I don't like about us being self-employed
1 - I have to research new health insurance EVERY year.
2 - I have to research retirement investments EVERY year.
3 - As the boss, Joe can't forget about work while he's on vacation.
4 - We're the ones who worry about accounts receivable going past-due.
5 - Ultimately, Joe is responsible for EVERYTHING that his contractors do.
6 - We get a lot of business junk mail.