Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dixie Update

I have been asked my some of my readers how Dixie, the kitten, is doing with her broken leg recovery.  She is coming along.  The limp is much less prominent, though some days are better than others.

It has not slowed her down any.  The other night we were out at the firepit roasting marshmallows and Dix wanted to join us.  She expressed her discontent from the very tiptop of the screen door, where she hung by her claws....trying to figure out how the heck she got up there....and how the heck she was going to get down!

One night there was a fly was in the house.  She chased it like a crazy cat jumping up to the plant shelf, down to the computer cabinet top, down to the 4-drawer filing cabinet, and over to the little cupboard in front of the window.  She caught that rascal in the windowsill, too.  He didn't live to tell about his experience with a crazy cat!

I will say when she is attacked by the crazy cat bug, it sets her healing back a bit.  It could be a long summer of recovery.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

First Grade Music Program

On Friday, Molly and I had the honor of attending Liberty Elementary's First Grade Music Program.  The three first grade classes combined for the program, so there were about 60 kids singing. 

J-Bear is in the second row, 7th from the right.
Just to the right of the Eagle's wing tip.
Each class did a 'solo song' which included a special production.  J-Bear's class sang "I Can't Spell Hippopotamus". 

She is the second "O" in Hippopot
 Then came the dancing.

J-Bear and V doing the Liberty Eagle Hoedown
 We all met back in their class room.  It was 45 minutes before school was out.  I gave J-Bear the option of staying at school and going to Mama Jo's (like usual) or leaving with me and getting groceries at WinCo.  She picked staying at school.  I can't imagine why!?!?!

J-Bear with her fan club members.

J-Bear and Mrs. H.
J-Bear and B.  A boy whose mother worked
at our former daycare.  They have known each
other more than 1/2 their lives.

Friday, May 25, 2012

J-Bear's Travel Journal

J-Bear’s teacher gave her a travel journal to write about her adventures while she was gone.  J-Bear took the duty seriously.  I did not edit at all.  Note that she frequently writes b when she means d and visa versa.  Swap out those two letters if a word/sentence do not make sense to you.  Here are her postings in the journal. 

* * * * * * * * * *

First Plane Flite on Thersday
Our first plane flit was 1 hour.  It went 550 mph.  I met a new friend.  I don’t know her name. 

Bab Plane Flite
We’ve had a bab time beacase our plane would not go.  So we had to get on a nather oen.  That’s the dad bart you know.  Dut now we’re going to Virginia.  I am glad abowt that. 

Next Day
Wrer at Virginia at Sues and Tims house.  I am having a good time here.  I like it a lot. 

We Went to the Park
We went to the park. And the museum.  We had a good time there.  Well, I did.  I don’t know adoubt my dad.  HE IS CRASY is wat I think!

Today is Katie’s weding.  It is Satterday. 

Almost Cati’s Webing
It has not happende yet dut it will start in 6 hours.  It will be fun, I hope. 

Catie and Bryce
We went to Catie’s weding.  It was fun.  I liked it so much.  It was Catie and Bryce’s weding. 

We also went to Ben’s party.  He graduate from college. 

Going Home
On the way home I thing we take a plane to Minneapolis for our first plane flite.  On our second plane flite will de to Boise. 

Okay, before this I was not rite.  Actually we are going to New York then we will go to Minneapolis then doise and get home at midnight.  We were sopost to get home at 11:am.  But we got home at 11:pm.  Mom will pick us up from the plane. 

Scenes from Virginia

I downloaded the pictures from their grand adventure.  Here are some of my favorites!

"Hummingbird" and her Uncle Tim
The motel pool!
The windy, rainy Atlantic ocean.    
Virginia Living Museum:
They promised me that is only LOOKS like
he is biting her head off.  :)
If there is a monkey bar within 10 miles,
J-Bear will be on it
They clean up okay, huh?
Aunt Cherri, J-Bear, and Aunt Renee
I just love this picture!
Uncle Phil, J-Bear, and Uncle Tim
The lovely couple's first dance.
Cuttin' a rug with Aunt Renee

Monday, May 21, 2012

What a Weekend!

J-Bear and the Hubster took off for Virginia on Thursday at O'Dark:30 AM; Thursday night my friends Kelly, Mickey and Mary arrived at my house for the weekend.  Late Thursday.  Really late Thursday.  Like just before midnight mountain time on Thursday.  But that's just how they roll and you gotta love them for them.

I took Friday off work so I could hang with the gang at the State Softball Tournament, in which Taylor (Kelly and Mickey's daughter) was playing. 

Friday, J-Bear and the Hubster were off to Uncle Tim and Aunt Sue's house to visit.  Then they headed to the Virginia Living Museum.  Then back to Tim and Sue's for a BBQ, a dip in the motel pool, then off to bed. 

Saturday was another softball game for my guests and me.  Sadly we did not win, but that just allowed more time for shopping.  I very rarely shop at the mall, but I found myself at the mall Saturday afternoon with Kelly and Mary.  We went into a store called Spencers.  Perhaps you are familiar with Spencers, but I was not.  It is a gag gift type store and the further you walk toward the back of the store, the naughtier the gifts get.  I am not naive or a prude, but I did say "Oh, my!" a lot. 

I am standing at a t-shirt rack in Spencer's reading the captions on the shirts.  They had little posters to tell you what the shirt said on one side of the rack and the actual shirts on the other side.  Several "Oh, my!"s were muttered.  As I get to the last t-shirt on the display, I am stooped over trying to adjust my bifocals so I can actually see the words and the thought crosses my mind that perhaps if you are a person that needs to adjust your bifocals to read the shirt - then you probably should not even be reading the shirts!

Saturday night we BBQ'd at our house.  Mickey, Kelly, Mary, Taylor, Mike (Mary's brother), and Laurie (Mike's wife) all thoroughly enjoyed our back deck, the beautiful weather, yummy food, and joyous laughter that can be shared by people that have known each other 40+ years....and may have had a drinky-poo or two.

Saturday was the main event for J-Bear and the Hubster - the wedding.  I think they may have slipped in some swimming, then they got all fancied up.  Before the trip, J-Bear and I spent a bit of time talking about things that might happen at a wedding.  She apparently hung on my every word.  She reports that there was not a guest book, so she didn't get to sign her name.  She reports there was dancing, so she did get to dance with her dad.  And Aunt Renee. And Aunt Cherri.  And Aunt Sue.  And some woman that she doesn't even know who she was!  (The Hubster reported it was Sue's sister.)  J-Bear tells me that Catie's wedding was the absolute best part of the trip. 

Sunday held a foiled attempt to drive to North Carolina to see the ocean.  Foiled by rotten weather, so they just found a closer beach to visit.  They headed to Tim & Sue's to celebrate Ben (our nephew's) college graduation.  Then back to the motel to pack because they would have to get up at 4 bells to make their 6 AM flight home. 

Sunday, my guests had a wedding of their own to attend - just 2 miles from my house.  They headed back north after the wedding.  About one hour after they left, the phone rang and it was the Hubster.  Delta cancelled their flight.  That's all he knew.  They rebooked them but they would not get home until 11:45 PM Monday. 

I spent the next half an hour on hold waiting for Delta, only to learn the reason (I could not get better flights for them).  The runway lights at Norfolk were out and could not be guaranteed to be functional by 6 AM.  And you can't fly with no runway lights.  All airlines; all after dark flights were not arriving or departing.  It was a mess. 

But happily their replacement flights have gone off without a hitch (or without a serious one).  They are due to land in about 60 minutes.  I simply cannot wait.  I miss them very much! 

It's going to be a very long day for us tomorrow!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Rotten Travel Day

The day started early around here.  Very early.  Tippy (cat) made sure I was up in plenty of time to take my family to the airport - he reported to me at 3:20 AM that he really wanted to go outside.  I knew the alarm was set for 4:15 AM due to my airport driver obligations, so I just got up. 

I did get a bit of house cleaning done as my house guests from parts north are due to arrive at any moment.

They landed in Salt Lake City.  Ate breakfast.  Boarded their next flight to Atlanta, GA . . . then sat there.  I was watching their flight on a flight tracker web site and couldn't figure out why it was not moving.  It said "Taxiing" but it wasn't.  Their airplane had an engine problem and after an hour on the tarmac, they deplaned.  Delta rebooked them on American Airlines.  SLC to Dallas to Norfolk. 

Those two flights went okay, but of course the connections were not as good as the original and it put them 4 hours behind original schedule.  I called their motel to say 'hold their room, they will be there eventually'.  They told me "no problem Mrs. Hxxx.  I just need the last name and I will make a note on their reservation."  They didn't need the reservations number, blah blah blah.... 

They landed in Norfolk, their luggage and car booster seat were at the Delta office (yay!!) and they proceeded to the rental car agency.  Off to the motel . . . . where they had no record of their reservation.  According to the Hubster, the hotel contacted Travel-o-city and were faxed proof of reservation.  However, they are overbooked for the weekend and they cannot pinpoint a room they can have for the weekend.  But they do have a room for the night.  They will have to figure it all out tomorrow. 

I think the hotel and Travel-o-city should thank their lucky stars that Mrs. H is not traveling with them.  I am rather unpleasant to deal with when service organizations fail to provide me service.   

The Hubster reports that J-Bear did fabulously well traveling.  She was a real sport about all the mix up.  When they called me from SLC, J-Bear reported that they shared their row with a very nice lady who was really fun.  She has a new friend! 

I imagined that somewhere in the SLC airport, there was a woman on the phone with her loved ones that reported "OMG!  I sat next to the chattiest 7 year old girl!"  ;-)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Yard Sales

It's yard sale time again!  We love warmer weather for a lot of reasons, but our Mommy and Me Saturday Morning Excursions to see what kind of treasures we can find would likely be in the Top 5 if we were to make a list. 

The south eastern part of town does not always have a wide selection of advertised yard sales.  But we have found that if we just drive down some of the more major streets and look for signs, we are likely to strike gold.  Yesterday was no exception. 

The first stop, J-Bear found yet another stuffed cat toy she had to have.  She is allowed $3 each weekend to spend as she wishes.  She wished to spend 25 cents of it on another cat.  And the husband was making popcorn in his old fashioned machine and cheerfully gave J-Bear a free bag.  Can you believe it, mom???  He gave me the popcorn for F-R-E-E!

Off to a Lutheran Church craft sale.  Of course, there was a lot of crocheted stuff.  But we also found this:  


There is a recent fondness (at least on J-Bear's part) for playing Go Fish.  But holding 7 cards is difficult.  Score!

Then we drove by a Boy Scout sponsored yard sale.  I generally avoid 'those kind' of yard sales because people do not generally donate really good stuff.  It is almost always weird stuff people were just trying to get out of their house.  But J-Bear insisted we stop.  They didn't have anything very exciting.  (Translation:  I was right!)  However, we went over to their book table.  J-Bear spotted this book:

 "Oh, Mom!  This is a great book!  Can I buy it?  Please, please can I buy it???" 

While I am not one to turn down a child begging to buy a book, I personally had never heard of 'A Light in the Attic'.  So I asked "How do you know this book?" 

Apparently, Mrs. H reads out of this book at school.  As we plopped down our $1.00, several of the scouts commented "That's a great book!" 

J-Bear begged to be done with yard sales so we could go home and read.  It is a collection of kid-friendly poems.  Silly stuff.  Sometimes gross stuff.  But very entertaining.  Some of the titles include:

  • The Meehoo with an Exactlywatt - a knock knock joke with "Me, who?"
  • The Sitter - a story about a baby-sitter Mrs. McTwitter that thinks you are supposed to sit on the baby.
I  have never seen J-Bear so excited or happy to own a book.  She is thrilled beyond belief.

Happy Mother's Day

Want to give a shout out to all the mothers out there.  I hope you get to spend the day doing what you love with those that you love. 

It is the absolute best thing I have ever done in my life - being J-Bear's mother. It can be difficult and trying at times, but I would not trade it for anything in the world.  I am thankful everyday for my girl! 

* And at least 85% of the time, she thinks I am pretty cool, too.  

* I am not naive; I know my approval rating will drop as her age raises.  It already has . . .

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Poor Dixie

Dixie, the kitten, turned up lame the last Saturday in April.  She was just walking across the kitchen and I  noticed she would not put any weight on her rear right leg. 

We gave it a few days but when she was still limping, I took her to the vet the following Wednesday.  They examined her.  There was no exterior injury.  They could feel a lump in what would be her little kitty hamstring muscle.  We assumed she somehow pulled her hamstring.  They gave us pain/inflammation medicine and sent us home. 

They called to see how she is doing and I had to honestly say she is no better.  So we hauled her back to the vet today and left her there for them to X-Ray her leg and reassess the situation.  They called me this afternoon with shocking news.

Dixie has a broken leg.

I was stunned.  She doesn't act very sick or very injured.  She is her cheerful self and is eating, playing (a little) and even wrestled with Tippy some.  But the X-Ray shows that she has a hairline fracture on her upper femur bone right up next to the hip. 

We will never know how she broke her leg.  But I suspect jumping from the top of the china cabinet down to the kitchen table and/or the big time wrestling events that take place in our house could be at fault. 

For now we just keep her quiet (right - she IS a kitten, ya know) and hope she heals up all by herself.

Good grief!

Grand Old Flag

J-Bear came home singing a new song tonight.

You're a grand old flag,
You're a high f i v i n g flag!

I don't have the heart to tell her those are not the right words.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Our Firepit

Tonight we finally found time to break in the new fire pit! 

It is part of the 'remove the deck' plan.  Or at least it was part of MY remove the deck plan from the start.  One of my little secrets in life is I am an amateur pyromaniac.  I love fire!  The controlled camp fire type.  It actually terrifies me to think of property burning or forest fires.  But a nice little fire in a fire pit - that I enjoy. 

I didn't spring it on the Hubster until after the deck was already gone.  We got it about two weeks ago but life has kept getting in the way of actually using it.Tonight was the night.  I had to go over the check list:
  • Got fire wood?  Check!
  • Got an ax for chopping some kindling?  Check!
  • Can you find the roasting sticks?  Check! 
  • Got marshmallows, chocolate bars, and graham crackers?  Check!
  • Got a family willing to join me around the fire pit?  Check! 
It was fun.  I think it will become a family favorite.  Sort of like camping without even leaving home. Here are some photos from our first fire pit experience: 
The proud fire starters!
Totally enthralled!
The only one that properly assembled his s'more.
The girls ate theirs as individual parts.  Think a 3 course meal!
(He actually did have a good time - you just can't
tell by the look on his face!)
The excitement of the marshmallow roast!
The remains of a 'mallow that was
shoved in whole and caused puking and choking!
Sorry - just had to post it!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May I have some Dino Gummies?

Just as I posted the comment on the cheese sticks....this conversation took place. 

May I have some Dino Gummies?
Did you have some already today?  Yes, you had some in the van on the way to cheerleading class.  So no. 
Pretty please.
Come on, please.
What part of no don't you understand? 
The O!

True or False?

If you eat too many cheese sticks, will you turn into a cheese stick? 

It is a questions J-Bear and I debate on a fairly regular basis.  She says you can't turn into anything besides just being a human.  I have heard it all my life, so it must be true.  (I am sure it is on the internet somewhere, too.  If it is on the internet, it has to be true - right???)

She says just because someone says something doesn't make it true. How did I get such a smart kid? 

Note:  J-Bear appears to be doing a scientific study to prove her point.  The kid would eat 10 cheese sticks a day if her parents would let her!

The Conversation

Sunday evening, J-Bear and I were snuggling in the big chair in the computer room having a conversation.

It had been a very busy weekend.  She got to go to Build a Bear after school Friday with one of the day care families for a birthday party.  Her cousin spent the night with us Friday night.  Her friend CJ spent the night Saturday night.  In between we visited horses, ate dinner out, went to the park.  It was an action packed weekend.

But it started on a sad note on Friday.  I got to Mama Jo's to pick up J-Bear after the Build a Bear adventure and JoAnn was crying.  I learned that the step-father of one of Jo's day care kids died that day.  He was 31 and died of brain cancer.

J-Bear and I were having that kind of conversation.  What brain cancer a daddy that young could die...that Dylan might be pretty sad when she returns to Mama Jo's.

I noticed a scratch on the back of her hand.  I asked her if Dixie (the kitten with a reputation for scratching her littlest human) had gotten her.

She smiled and said "No.  That is a gift from Tippy!"

Tippy is our older cat that on most days has an unending pile-o-patience for J-Bear's lovin'!

I couldn't help but bust out laughing.  Nothing like a comment from the kid to bring an end to a serious conversation.

The Wrong Kind of "Excitement"!

Last night, we were having BBQ steaks for dinner.  I fired up the gas grill and went back inside the house to let it burn off the last meal we cooked. As I puttered around the kitchen, I noticed some smoke and thought "whatever we cooked last sure must have been greasy!" and went about my business. 

I grabbed the steaks and headed out to clean the grill and throw them on.  I immediately knew something was wrong.  I could see fire behind the control board.I grabbed the knobs and shut them off, but they were melting and ineffective.

I hollered at the Hubster "I need help!  The grill is on fire!" Together we managed to get the flames blown out.  The grill is a total loss.  I think we were very lucky our house didn't catch fire, too. 

Our house came with a natural gas line hose specifically designed to hook up your BBQ.  It is so handy to never worry about a propane tank being empty!  Last night I learned a drawback to this handy gadget.  The gas line was still going full speed just feeding the flames.  Then blowing into the air after the flames were gone.  We got the line shut down and any real crisis was averted.  And I feel so lucky that no person, animal, or valuable possession (like our house) was hurt in the process. 

Now to the burning question of the day (pun intended):  You have any insight on BBQ grills? 

We went to Home Depot last night to research the situation. 
  • I learned that BBQ's have come a long way in 8 years.  
  • I learned there are so many bells and whistles it makes my head spin.  Most models come with a side burner that is like a stove burner.  I can't imagine myself using/needing that!
  • I learned that it seems to boil down to 2 burners, 3 burners, 4, 5, 6 burners.  And on and on. 
  • I learned that cast iron grates seem to be the 'high-end' best choice.  
  • I learned that retail stores do not really carry the grills that are made for natural gas line hook up.  You have to buy a converter kit, unless you order on-line. 
  • I learned you can spend as little as $99 (cheap and flimsy) and as much as $3500 (outside the budget range).  
  • But I did NOT learn what grill we really want.  

Any suggestions, my faithful readers?