Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Fragments/Freewrite – Packing up!!

Purging your mind of all those little thoughts… and “POOP” “POOF”  you have a post (I have spelling issues)!  Please visit Mrs. 4444’s Half Past Kissing Time to see what’s been brewing this week! AND check out Sara’s Ordinary and Awesome for Friday’s Freewrite!

Friday Fragments? is the Chronicles of My Ordinary and Awesome Life, Family, and Thoughts. is the Mostly Wordless Wednesday headquarters as well as the home to several original awards and memes.

  • As if we don’t '”nerd it up” enough around here between my husband and I, we went and got new cell phones.  He said he’s being dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century.  I have a knack for all things electronic, but it’s taking me some time to get used to going from this:

                        mycellphone  to this:  mynewcell 

NERD! Now when I’m not sitting at my computer 24/7 I can still twitter and facebook and blog and google and chat and youtube unlimited hours all while listening to MP3’s and taking pictures.  AND the best part?? It still ended up being $30 or so CHEAPER than our original plan.  Maybe we should go in more than every 3 year to adjust our rates! We spent the night calling and texting each other and drinking wine. Nerds.

  • Max and Aria were playing with good old fashioned stamps and ink.  They decided the paper was no fun and started decorating each other.  As its Max’s habit to not wear a shirt on hot days, he allowed Aria to stamp up and down his belly, and strategically place a smiley face over each nipple.  Then he runs to me..” Look mom, my smiley faces have NOSES!”
  • Piper’s “pink” came off today.  We ran in breathless, well I was breathless, the other four with me wouldn’t stop talking, 20 minutes late for our appointment.  Of course that makes it 5pm and everyone was going home.  They just managed to catch the doctor and the nurse who runs the cast saw.  We got it done quickly. I apologized over and over for keeping them.  Dr. K is such a sweet guy he said they were just worried we’d had car trouble or something and he was glad to help out Piper, then called her something sweet and endearing (cutie bug pie sweetie – it escapes me now).  He’s just SO nice every time we’re there!!  Piper was happy to have the cast off.  They cut right through her princess sticker and I thought she’d be upset, but she didn’t care.  Aria was more worried than Piper was over the saw.


  • I hung out a full load of laundry (diapers) on the line, only to have them rained on all afternoon while we were out!! I hate drying them in the dryer, but I think I’m stuck!  Speaking of laundry, Carmi at Written Inc. hosts Thematic Photographic, and the theme is Laundry…. go have a look and maybe enter your own photo! I entered mine!
  • Mrs. 4444 liked my new ‘do’ well enough to call me her Favorite Friday Fragment from last week.  THANKS!!!

  • I’m packing my bags today.  I head out at the butt-crack of dawn for the state of Oklahoma.  There I will hook up (so to speak *wink wink*) with The RaMbLeR and hang for a few days before swinging back up to Wisconsin to see the “Loud Family”.  The Loud Family is what my dad named all my mom’s fam upon meeting them.  Understandable.  They.are.rowdy. I love it!   I’m travelling with 4 kids. Alone.  Wish me luck!!!
  • Every time I tell someone why in the world I’m travelling to OK, I get these odd looks.  The “are you sure?” looks.  You say you’ve never met this person in real life before?  How do you know what you’re getting into?  This isn’t a CraigsList or dating service.  I don’t need the picture to know who I’m talking to.  As if the lovely woman I met over a year ago and have talked to almost daily has created this elaborate scheme involving children with disabilities and blogs to lure me to Oklahoma of all places.  What my “IRL” peeps don’t seem to understand is that all you lovely people ARE real, even if we haven’t met “IRL”.  I now find it odd that they don’t what BlogHer is or who MckMama is.  I know more about some of you than the people I see here on a daily basis.  I, as a mostly-stay-at-home mom, have come to see many of you as my lifeline to the “outside” world.  You are my social life.  I don’t have a single reservation about this trip (well, maybe about the van..).  I am SO excited!!
  • I’ll be updating on Twitter, please do follow me!!! My next post will be from the RaMbLeR’s!!!!!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Thousand Words Thursday - Contemplation

A Thousand Word Thursday is a chance to post those pictures, old and new, that you love to see.  They are always worth a thousand words.  See more at Cheaper Than Therapy.

Cheaper Than Therapy


Piper’s “pink” comes off this afternoon!! Yaay!  I was happy to see some progress with her Constraint Induced Therapy. I was honestly hoping for more, like the big strides made LAST TIME, but it’s still good.  We are in the fine tuning stage this time, not the leaps and bounds from before. Still good.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Even a princess needs to do laundry…


As it turns out, Carmi's Thematic Photographic theme for the week is Laundry! Please stop by Written Inc. to see his amazing photos!!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Why my husband should really start his own blog….

This is the hubby’s “25 Random Things” meme that he filled out.  It says an awful lot about him, and it makes me laugh.  Enjoy…

1. I was born at noon on a Tuesday, November 17th, 1970 at St. Lukes Hospital which is now MeritCare. I share the same birth date as Danny Devito, Daisy Fuentes, Sophie Marceau, and Stephen Root (Milton from Officespace, and the voice of Bill from King Of The Hill).
2. I first realized wasn't gay during an episode of Charlie's Angels. I was seven, it was a shock--i thought i was broken.
3. Also when I was seven, I rode my bike across town to Stephen's, Adam's or Joel's house. My oldest, Aria is seven. There is no way I would let her ride her bike across town to a friend's house.
4. I'm far too sensitive. My feelings are hurt very easily. I'm also very forgiving--which I guess is a good quality to have if one's too sensitive.
5. If at all possible, I like to try to get into tv shows that have been out for a while so i can watch them on DVD without commercial breaks. i really really really hate commercials. Right Now I'm watching Grey's Anatomy. After Grey's anatomy, it'll be Desperate Housewives, Pushing Daisies, Deadwood, and Carnivale. Yeah, I know, Deadwood and Carnivale are HBO shows and have no commercials. Also, I want to watch Bury My Heat At Wounded Knee.
6. I believe in almost anything paranormal. Ghosts?...yup. UFO's?....yup. The Loch Ness Monster?...yup. Crops Circles, Moth-man, chupacabra, the Bermuda Triangle, the Dragon's Triangle, ESP, Remote Viewing, Psionic Abilities, Prophets and prophesy, the scientific study of fate, Roswell, Area 51, Stolen, found or acquired alien technology, the JFK Conspiracy, the UFO cover-up conspiracy, The Illuminati, Secret Societies, Bigfoot, Yeti, Sasquatch, Cryptozoology...yup, yup, yup, a 1000 times yup. Reincarnation?.....maybe. I just can't bring myself to disregard a lifetime of religious understanding.
7. When I was a junior in high school, I 'fudged' my science-fair project. By fudged, i mean completely fabricated. I was SUPPOSED to photograph sunspots through my telescope, but like any high school kid forced to study a subject he or she absolutely hates, I skillfully procrastinated my responsibilities and found myself staring an 'F' in the face two days before the High School Science Fair. So, as a back up plan, which is to say, 'slamming the panic button', I drew sunspots on a white construction-paper cutout of the sun. I set it on a background of black construction paper to simulate space. My friend and I took pictures slightly out of focus and had my friend develop them at his work at the local newspaper. I ended up going to the regional science fair and getting the Army Award of Excellence presented me by Captain Illa La Chapella. My conspiratorial friend is still mad at me. Mostly I think it's because he didn't get an ward. I kept it because back then I didn't understand personal integrity. Also, I think I deserved the award for my rapid-fire creativity.
8. My wife and I have the uncanny ability to listen to a song we love over and over and over and over...without getting sick of it.
9. Because I'm a DJ, people are always trying to get me to listen to their music. You know the type. They vomit lists of 'fringe' groups that can't make it on the national scene, which usually are under-produced, poorly mixed, hippy-types that either write a good lyric, rip a decent guitar-riff, or are 'pioneering a new sound.' It's almost always crap. I almost always hate it. But I still smile and tell them it's awesome.
10. I have a 2003 100th anniversary edition Harley Davidson 1200 Sporty. It was my 'Welcome Home Alive' gift from my wife.
11. I believe in the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution--the right to keep and bear arms. This doesn't make me a gun-nut, survivalist, member of a hate-group, or terrorist. This simply makes me the homeowner whose house you don't want to break into.
12. I've been to Mexico, Canada, England, Ireland, Germany (sort of), Turkey (sort of), Qatar, Afghanistan, Pakistan (unintentionally, and twice, by the way), and Kyrgistan. Mexico, Canada, and England are the only countries I've visited that weren't a result of the war.
13. I follow three tennets in life: Never trust a skinny cook, Never love a woman who kisses with her eyes open, and always follow a fat hunter. Either you'll understand these or you won't. If you do, we've probably had similar experiences.
14. I love computer games of all types, console, computer, handheld--love, love, love them. If I lived in an alternate reality where I didn't have a wife and kids, I would happily spend my free time wasting my life saving digital worlds from demons, monsters, aliens, villains, mutants, zombies, skeletons, warriors, warlords, barbarians, sorcerers, witches, wizards, dragons, armies, hoards ....blah...blah....blah...and in the background of THIS reality, Mel, my wife, laughs and whispers 'Nerd!' you see why I fantasize of my alternate reality.
15. I love my wife dearly, but I've discovered that of all her talents, singing really isn't her forte. I scream aloud in my head. Or imagine loud noises--like standing inside of a large bell as it tolls or a Chinese New Year's celebration. Anything loud. Really, really loud. Sometimes I'll ask her a question, you know, a tactical diversion. She usually keeps singing until she doesn't remember the words then looks at me and says 'what?'
16. I've owned some awesome cars in my life.
My Awesome Cars List: 1962 3/4-ton Chevy pickup, a 1969 Pontiac Lemans 2-Door muscle car, a 1976 Cobra II Mustang (the Farrah Fawcett car from Charlie's Angels), a 1956 Buick Special, a 1979 Plymouth Trailduster 4x4 2-Door with a removable hard-top, a 1971 Oldsmobile Delta Royale 2-Door convertible with a 455c.i. Rocket, and a 1997 Geo Metro (shut up, I include this in my 'awesome cars' list because it's what I currently drive).
17. Peanut Butter and Jelly isn't just a kid's lunch. It's a breakfast, snack, dinner or entree.
18. In Afghanistan, when we based out of FOB Warrior, we drew rations from the chow hall to cook for ourselves in the field because our MRE's (Meals Ready to Eat) froze. Among the dishes I prepared for our squads were Shepherd's Pie, Steamed and Rolled Tacos, Oofda Tacos, Hamburgers, Cheeseburgers, and Grilled Steaks. The Afghanis called me Ashpaz, which is Pashtu for cook.
19. I've killed people in combat.
20. I hate kid's programming. My threshold of pain for Dora the Explorer is about 2.6 minutes. 2.6 seconds if I'm hung over.
21. I believe in a modest wardrobe. I have two pair of work slacks and four shirts. My summer wardrobe is about the same. I also believe in 'wearing twice, washing once.' Going green and saving the world one load of laundry at a time! (Actually, as I'm finding out, I'm probably just lazy)
22. Sometimes Sailor Jerry is my best friend.
23. I have a dream of starting my own business. It's a well planned and unique idea--it could be awesome. But I'm afraid of the economy, the Obama Administration's tax policies, and jeopardizing my family's security and financial welfare on a gamble.
24. I love giving and getting hugs. The longer the better.
25. It's cliche, I know, but in the 38 years of living on this earth, the only thing I know for sure is that life is short. Even shorter of you're a plate of frosted sugar cookies on my kitchen counter.

afghanWarrior15 afghanWarrior23 IMG_9931a

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday Fragments -

Sweep up all those leftovers and throw them on a post. Random thoughts? Single pictures? New websites to recommend? Today’s the day…   Thanks to Mrs. 4444 (who is living it up at BlogHer09 as we speak) we have Friday Fragments.  See more at Half Past Kissing Time.

Friday Fragments?

And to help with the random thoughts, there’s Friday’s Freewrite, by Sara at Ordinary and Awesome! is the Chronicles of My Ordinary and Awesome Life, Family, and Thoughts. is the Mostly Wordless Wednesday headquarters as well as the home to several original awards and memes.
  • Nope.  I’m not at BlogHer 09.  Sadly, it’s within driving distance, too!!  BUT I will be making a trip soon. AND I get to meet a good blogger buddy (eeeeeee!).  Want to see where?
  • I washed an entire load of just princess dresses (and I was missing at least one!).  Who knew we even had so many.  They are worn so often that I had a hard time finding one that didn’t have juice or mac & cheese on the front!


  • Did I mention I’m not at BlogHer 09???
  • FINALLY got my hair cut.  And the cool part? I had it done in trade for pics for the stylist’s salon.  I’m going to come in and do before/after shots of clients for her wall.  Here’s me, the first one!!


  • Vacation Bible School was last weekend, I helped out.  Whew, a whole weekend without my computer or facebook or twitter!! Not sure how I survived. I’m just strong, I guess!

IMG_1830 JCnLorraine maxjumpyland

  • I totally need a new phone.  I can’t even send a picture on the one I have.  Being the techno-geek I love to be, it’s a wonder I’ve had this piece of….. for so long.  I guess my cheap frugal ways overpower my need for technology.


  • I had a thought to go with this bullet, but now it escapes me. Hmmm…
  • PLEASE PLEASE check out Journey For Jess!!! They can use all the support we can throw their way!!
  • I have to work this weekend, so I will be out of touch until Monday.  Man, I need a new phone.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Thousand Words Thursday – A Year and a Half

A year and a half ago we learned Piper had Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy.  We learned about the difference between Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy.  We learned that toddlers are sedated for MRI’s.  We learned that what damage is done cannot be undone.  We learned what AFO’s and UCB’s are.  We learned what Kinesio tape is.  We learned about CIT.  We also learned that these things do not define Piper.  We learned that we can’t know what lies ahead, because it’s never what you think.  We learned how determined and strong a two-year-old can be.  She taught us those things, and she continues to teach us and surprise us. 


A Thousand Words Thursday is hosted by TheMomJen at Cheaper Than Therapy.  Please stop by her place to see even more!

Cheaper Than Therapy

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wordless/Wordful Wednesday – When you think you’re alone


Mom Blogs

Wordless Wednesday is brought to you by the ladies of 5 Minutes for Mom.

IMG_1923a IMG_1924a IMG_1920a

~~~~~~~~~~ and now some words ~~~~~~~~~~

I love parking JC in the yard and just watching him.  He’s not too fond of the grass on his hands and legs, so most of the time he stays put.  I was hanging out some laundry, but of course I had my camera handy to catch the action.  JC decided his toes were just as interesting as the scenery.  At least (this time) he wasn’t stuffing handfuls of grass in his mouth.

Please sneak over to SevEn cLoWn CirCuS for more Wordful Wednesday posts.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I ♥ Faces – FEET!


Usually I ♥ Faces is all about the face (duh!) but this week’s theme is feet!  I love feet, and I had a hard time choosing just one foot picture to enter.  SO I’m including links at the end of the post, you know, in case you want to see the runner-ups!

Princess Piper and her matching Barbie


FIRST runner up

Second runner up

Third runner up

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday Fragments – Big week….kinda

Friday Fragments – flushing from your faculties fragments of fluff, fact and phenomenon too fleeting to feature flat out.  Float over to Mrs. 4444’s for further fun fragments!

Friday Fragments?

And new here, Sara’s Friday’s Freewrite !! is the Chronicles of My Ordinary and Awesome Life, Family, and Thoughts. is the Mostly Wordless Wednesday headquarters as well as the home to several original awards and memes.
  • A dog crapped in my yard.  I take offense because I have no dog.  In fact this is one of the many reasons I do not.  SO being the forensic poop-ologist I am, I figure it was a little dog.  Also, it was either a) loose and no one was with it, or b) was being walked without a leash and the owner stood and watched the whole thing.  The spot in our yard is halfway inside our fence from either sidewalk.  For your benefit, I DID NOT take a picture.
  • I saw Harry Potter! I saw Harry Potter! It was awesome.  Of course I’m always the first to say the book was better…. but whatever.
  • A friend of mine unexpectedly lost her husband last Monday.  I debated even posting this.  The whole situation is awful.  She has 3 small children and has only been at home with them, not really any work experience.  She came home Monday night to find him hanging in the garage, the kids all sleeping in their beds.  I don’t think I’d even know where to begin.  I should feel really bad for him and whatever storm was raging in his psyche.  What I really feel is sadness for her.  What must her life been like the last few months while all this was brewing?  Why didn’t we see it?  I rarely ever see her husband.  She’d come to church almost every Sunday with up to 3 kids, no husband.  I can count on one hand how many times he’s been there in the last three years.  I think his intention was to hurt her.  I knew they’d recently had some problems, but not that would end like this.  No job, a house not paid for, small kids, and no life insurance.  She needs lots of prayers and support. Our church men have already been over working on the house and sheet rocking the garage to give it a different appearance than the night she came home.
  • Steve’s 20th reunion was last weekend.  As I was typing he was catching up with all his old (so to speak!) classmates.  Since we know almost no babysitting age, I had movie night with the kids.  Friday night is family movie night.  Last Friday was Transformers.  Aria made it to 9:30 and asked to go to bed.  Max fell asleep in his popcorn about 9:45.  Piper was still wandering around the living room after 10pm drinking everyone’s soda and eating popcorn.


  • Finally went in to pick up Piper’s new orthotics Wednesday.  They were done almost 3 weeks ago.  We would have gone sooner, but they sent a nice little letter explaining that our insurance doesn’t cover all the cost and we need $400 up front to pick them up.  Nice.  I know we’ve had it good up until now, but I suspect there will be more costs to come.  Insurance companies aren’t too keen to pay for things.

IMG_1952 IMG_1953

  • Please check in on Journey for Jess.  There was a news story on our local news about the family HERE.  I wrote about it HERE.  You can visit the family’s blog HERE.
  • Oh yeah, I took pictures of fireworks.  I never get the chance, so here they are…

fireworks  fireworks2

  • We got to sneak over to the HoJo and swim when Daddy had a room there for National Guards.  Since Piper’s “pink” had temporarily come off (more about that in a second) we were all able to swim and enjoy the pool.

~~~~~~~~~~ Since I haven’t done it in a while, some CIT numbers…


# days Piper was without a cast: 5 (Aria was helping her up and pulled it right off!)

# baths taken while cast was off: 6

# hours spent in waiting room for her doctor to re-cast: 1.5

# pictures of new cast being applied: 0!

# options for Rock, Paper, Scissors in a cast: 1

# hours spent adding some “bling” to new purple “pink”: 1/2





Scene standing in line at Sam’s club:

Little Girl to Aria: “Is that your little sister?” points to Piper

Aria: “Yeah”

Little Girl: “I feel sorry for her!”

Aria, slightly confused: “…why?!”

Little Girl: “did she break her arm?”

Aria: “No.  She just has….problems.”

Little Girl re-joins her family. I laugh.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A Thousand Words Thursday – baby boy

I can’t help myself.  So I thrust upon you yet another picture of my little guy.  Don’t you just want to eat him up??  I never understood that statement until I was a mom.  I literally have the urge to stick his toes in my mouth.  Is that normal?  Do you feel the need to “consume” your child.  I know not to worry, by the time the boy is 5 it will be all I can do to hold him at arms length while I thrust him into the tub.  Yep, enjoy the sweet smelling baby before he becomes a stinky little boy.


A Thousand Words Thursday is lovingly hosted by TheMomJen at Cheaper Than Therapy, please stop by her place to see even more!!!

Cheaper Than Therapy

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wordful Wednesday - Seeing King Tut

Wordful Wednesday is hosted by Angie at Seven Clown Circus.  Go have some fun!!!

Aria is our future archaeologist, so when ads started popping up for a King Tut exhibit, we took notice.  The display was just two and a half hours away from us, so we decided to take a day trip down there to see it.  Who knows when something this cool will be nearby again!


We had to stand near the gift shop for our turn to be escorted in.  Fortunately there were plenty of neat toys to entertain the kids while we waited.

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Aria was really excited to see the artifacts.  I gave her a camera and told her to take pictures of whatever she wanted.  She took tons!


Max thought the mummy itself was pretty cool.  He loved pointing things out to Aria that he thought she’d like.  They were also as interested in a hole in the wall.  Actually I was thrilled with the architecture of the building just as much as the exhibit.  It was an old opera house they are in the process of restoring.  I thought the old brick and bare floors leant itself well to the Egyptian display.

IMG_1735 IMG_1686 IMG_1699IMG_1717aIMG_1740a  IMG_1948

It was a pretty cool trip.  It sparked Aria’s love for all things Egyptian once again.  Oh, and when we were done, guess where we went to eat!?