Thursday, December 31, 2015

Blog Book

I started this blog way back in August of 2007 right after Wesley was born. I've always wanted to turn it into a book and I finally got around to it this year. As it turns out there aren't a huge amount of options out there for turning a blog into a book. There is the option where you create your book, page by page, importing pictures and text from your blog. This is a time consuming and expensive option but yields the nicest book. I started with this option. Blurb is a nice site to create a book. I downloaded the software and launched the daunting process of copying and pasting each post and finding each high quality picture from a CD (from 2007 mind you). It took half a day to get a few pages done and I gave up. It would have easily taken a couple of weeks to bring in all 68 posts from 2007. I wasn't willing to invest that kind of time, I wanted something easier. Not to mention the next book would be for 2008 which contained 282 posts(!).

So I continued on my search for an easy to make blog book. I ran across They provide the other option to bloggers that want a book. You just enter your domain name and dates you'd like covered in your book and they do the rest. It's beautifully formatted and not all that expensive. It was like night and day compared to Blurb. Oddly enough I didn't realize they were not in the US until I placed my order and had to pay for DHL overseas shipping. They are a Netherlands based company, Groningen to be precise. I ordered the first year of the blog with 68 blog entries and it was $32 plus $14 shipping. I had it in less than two weeks. I plan to order the next year soon and try and do a year every so often until I have a nice set of blog books for all nine of the years I've been blogging. Since they are mostly about the kids, I think it's a pretty nice set of baby books for them to read.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Family Pictures

We haven't had family pictures taken in nearly four years, it was time. I didn't know the first thing about finding a photographer and I wanted a little more than the traditional JC Penny photo. Then my old roommate from college started posting family photos she'd taken and they were lovely. Turns out she's been taking classes, buying photography equipment and started a business. I booked her over the Thanksgiving break and she did a really nice job!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. We sure did. My folks came over for Christmas morning and we all had a nice time together. The kids got some wonderful gifts that they are enjoying. Merry Christmas!

Two strings of lights went out on my tree about a week ago, one at the top and one around the middle. It's too much work to dig them out from under all the ornaments. I'll need some new lights for next year.

The kids set out some of their favorite stuffed animals on the couch next to the tree so they can meet Santa when he comes. I thought that was too cute.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Decemeber Odds and Ends

This is an odds and ends post. Stuff that doesn't warrant it's own topic but still good to write down for some reason or another.

-Greta was the first in her kindergarten class to lose a tooth. Then a week later she lost another. We knew tooth pulling would be a far different story than it was for her brother. You see Wesley lets us lasso them with a loop of floss. He's so used to this painless method that it doesn't phase him anymore. I mentioned this method to Greta and she fell into a crumpled mess of sobs on the floor. The mere mention of pulling a tooth and she turns white and runs from the room. She gets the dramatic flare from her mother. I got my ears pierced when I was in 5th grade. Every time I tried to put an earring in I would nearly pass out. I let them close up and 28 years later got them pierced again. This time it "took". Once you get an epidural your fear of needle like objects goes out the window.

Anyways, back to Greta. Those two teeth were loose for a month before she pulled them out on her own in the bathtub. She was so proud of herself. You have to let that one do things on her own.

My Dad took this picture and I love it. I hope you don't mind me using it Pops.

-I got to do something I've never done before. I wrote out a police report. While driving home from picking up the kids from school I witnessed my neighbor, who was preparing to turn left, get rear ended. She's a sweet elderly woman who (thankfully) was in a tank....also known as a Buick. A little Kia driven by a young mother with several children in the back seat plowed into her. The mother was distracted by her kids and didn't notice the Buick had stopped to turn in front of her.

It was quite the accident with air bags being blown and the Buick being slammed forward about 30 feet. The elderly woman wasn't hurt but rather shaken up. She didn't want to get out of the car so I stayed with her until the police showed up. The young mom was very shaken up and had cuts all over. Her kids appeared ok although they were screaming so it's hard to know. She told me she was distracted by the kids before the accident. It was scary and could have easily been far worse. Thank goodness for airbags!

-I've been busy working on sculpture orders for customers. I just finished up the last big batch and got them shipped out on Friday. I do enjoy my "office". It consists of a reclining sofa, Netflix and a warm blanket. I pull  up a TV tray and even paint the sculptures from the couch. But don't you have a work room to do all that in? Why yes I do, but it's currently housing three large desert tortoises and three cockatiels. The latter being extremely loud and obnoxious. No, I'll take the comfy couch. I like my work from home gig. It's a keeper.

My coworkers are pretty nice too. They keep me company and occasionally warm my lap.

Here is the finished batch of yorkies. The guy that ordered them is giving them to his grown kids as gifts. All the kids and their dogs will be together for Christmas so I hope it goes over well. They were fun to make.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Birthday Boy

We celebrated the Hubby's birthday this week. One of the perks of having both kids in school is the newfound ability to trot off to lunch with my spouse any time I'd like. We've had fun trying new restaurants, breaking out of our routine. Our favorite inexpensive lunch joint is Pita Pit. Think Subway but so much better. It allows me to get something vegetarian (or vegan) and Hubby can get something piled up with meat. Have I mentioned I gave up meat (and dairy for the most part)?  It's been eight months, but that's another post.

Anyways, back to his birthday. We went to PF Chang's and stuffed our faces. Lunches with the hubby have become my new "happy" time. There are no babysitters, no time needed to be home's very carefree. Sometimes we go shopping afterward or get ice cream, it's been fun.

This year I took the kids to the local dollar store to let them pick out something for their dad. It went something like this:

"Would dad want a shower curtain?" "Probably not"

"How about a candle?" "Nah, he's not really a candle guy."

"Maybe some slippers?" "Yes! He'd love a pair of slippers."

So they got him some slippers, a pair of fleece lounging pants and a Dr. Pepper.  And he loved them. We must not forget the card his parents found for him. It's become a running joke to find the most hilarious card possible for each others birthdays. I think she took the cake with this dancing, farting baby card. The kids were laughing so hard they could hardly remain upright.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Holiday Events

As the previous post indicated we went to see Santa last weekend. At the library they have all sorts of things to do with your kids to pass the (extraordinarily long) time before you get to see Santa. Every one in town comes out to this event so there is a two hour wait. It gives us time to make ornaments, eat cookies, look at trains and write letters to Santa.

Afterwards I didn't feel like making dinner so we went out to eat. I always jump at the opportunity to eat out with the family. The kids are learning how to be well behaved little people at nice restaurants. It's taken awhile and tested my patience on more than one occasion but they're doing good.

Wesley had his third grade Christmas program on Tuesday and we were treated to some really nice singing. They did a fabulous job! His class is small and it's fun seeing these kids grow up. I recently bought a nice camera with one heck of a zoom lens on it and left it at home, so here is my horrid camera phone picture from the nose bleed section. I tried.

On the way home from the program we decided to travel south to a really spectacular drive through light show. You turn your radio on to a specific station and the lights are synced with the music. We try to go each year as a holiday tradition. The kids really enjoy it as do I.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Seeing Santa

I really love our tradition of going and seeing Santa at the library each year.  The kids get so excited and we come out of there with wonderful pictures and memories. Sean and I were talking about how many more Christmas's we'll have with two little kids that still "believe". It's sad to think this could be one of the last, Wesley is 8 years old after all. I don't really remember when I stopped believing, although I did have an older sister with a big mouth. ;-)

December is flying by in a blur of Christmas lights and UPS packages on the door step. Much like it does every year. The kids will be out of school for their winter break after next week so I hope to slow down and do some fun projects with them.

Friday, November 27, 2015


I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. We stayed home this year and kept it small and cozy, just the four of us. We have all been battling the creeping crud and getting well is what we want to do this Thanksgiving break. I made several pounds of snow crab, a small ham and several side dishes to gobble up. It was a hit. We are now sitting here listening to the sound of ice pellets hitting the roof and thankful we have a nice warm house to stay cozy in. We aren't Black Friday people and there will be no braving the roads to get a good deal on anything. My Christmas shopping is officially done and now I get to sit back and enjoy the Holiday season.

We put up the Christmas tree a week ago and the kids really enjoyed packing the ornaments on it. We decided we might need to buy a larger tree to accommodate all the wonderful homemade ornaments that I receive every year. Our "slim" tree is a little too skinny these days. Maybe next year.

The animals are all keeping warm outside in their houses with oodles of bedding. Dym, my old goat, is going into the winter season in great condition. She's fairly fat and sleek looking which is just what I want to see. I did buy her a new coat this year, my old cut up fleece jacket wasn't cutting it any longer. I found her a Thinsulate XXXL dog turnout coat which fits her great. I can't imagine the size of dog that was made for!

I'm trying a new method of bedding in the goat house this winter. It's called the "Deep Bedding" method. Normally in the spring and fall I clean out the goat house and start with fresh bedding but this year I didn't and just kept piling on fresh straw on top of the old soiled bedding. Eventually the bottom layer starts to break down and produces heat from the composting waste. This heat travels up and warms the goats through the winter. It hasn't gotten bitterly cold yet (although 26 isn't too warm either) so we'll see how it goes through the winter.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Fun with Cousins

Last weekend the kids and I went to visit my sister to celebrate my nephews 6th birthday. Emery is sure growing up. It's fun to see all the cousins together, they sure do have fun. We got to go outside and enjoy the beautiful fall weather with a nature walk and a bike ride. They were trying out a newly purchased tandem bike and Greta and I were happy to be testers. Happy birthday Emery!