Monday, June 29, 2009

Gone Fishing

Life in this household hasn't slowed down one bit. The kids spent the night with my parents on Friday night, so I had the house to myself for a few hours before Hubby got home. Then he and I spent the night in peace. We went out to dinner, rented Gran Tarino and came home to veg. It was awesome! We picked the kids up on Saturday just after lunch. That evening, I took the kids swimming in the neighbors pool while Hubby burned the big pile of wood in our backyard, on the hottest night of the year of course. Now if we can get the rest of the shingles out of the backyard, my yard will be back to normal again.

Hubby has been dying to do some decent fishing since the beginning of spring. Yesterday, we set out to do just that. He called a buddy of his and we went to his parents house to fish off their dock. Ok, they fished. I read.

Let me start by saying excuse the pictures because I took all of them with a cell phone. I was kicking myself when I got to thinking I really should've brought my camera. Next? I could live off of the deck alone. The picture above was taken of Hubby and the kids fishing off the dock from the deck. I love this setup so much, that I told Hubby we needed to buy the house two doors down that was on the market. Twice as big as what we are living in, with four bedrooms, hot tub, deck, and dock for only $457,000. How could we not buy that house!?!

We didn't get there until almost one, and the kids quickly tired of fishing because they really weren't biting a whole lot. Later that evening, we took them to Dairy Queen for supper and got back about 6pm to fish some more. That's when they started catching fish. Brady caught his first fish ever (after complaining all afternoon that he wasn't good at it) and the only reason he did catch it was because he was too busy talking to Hubby to play with his hook in the water. Bryce and Belle caught quite a few fish between them but Hubby managed to land the best fish of all.That was the only picture of a fish I got all day because it was well after they started catching that I thought to take pictures. Hubby also landed him a snapping turtle, too.

Then the kids started getting tired. And they were quietly fishing off the side.Seconds after I snapped the picture of Brady and Hubby, Brady laid his head on Hubby's shoulder. How I wish I had my camera!! And let me tell ya, it takes a minor miracle for these three to be quiet at the same time and not be sleeping. They finished using their bait and we headed home just before 9.

Today, I recovered. I washed tons of laundry, went to the store and took Hubby to work. The kids are on their way to bed and I am on my way to watch a movie. Tomorrow, we're off to the park.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My Green Thumb

I think this is the fourth year that I have put out a garden during the spring. Each year I have put out squash and the last three springs I have gotten tomato plants that I never planted. May have something to do with the tomatoes that rot on the vine before I remember to pick them. Last year was the first year I planted corn, but we left on vacation before it was ready. Then the entire week we were gone it didn't rain a drop so we didn't get any corn. My squash didn't really produce much last year either. This year is a whole other story. This is my garden this year.My tomatoes are mixed in with my squash, along with my carrots and a couple of canteloupe plants. My sweet peas didn't turn out as well as I would've liked but I have learned to stake them early next time so it wasn't for all for nothing. My squash plants have finally ripened enough that I was able to start harvesting them. This is what I have gotten over the last five days.This does not show the squash that I have frozen, cooked or given away. And there's much more coming! I think it's safe to say, I'm going to have squash for a very, very, very long time!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Why Is Faith and Religion So Difficult?

This is one of those posts that is hard to write. One that I struggle to put into words what is going through my head and one that can't be totally understood without background information. I didn't grow up in church. I grew up knowing that we were supposed to go to church and going occasionally. I vaguely remember attending various churches over the years, one where my parents were members and visiting others. There were plenty of times that I went to bible school in the summer with different people in our area. I went to friends house after school to learn various Bible related things. In high school, I went to church with friends. After Brady was born, we joined a church not far from our home. A little while after, I started wondering, thinking and then doubting. Doubting my salvation. Watching others and wondering how they can be so dedicated to their faiths, that they would do anything. Wishing that I could be that dedicated, that strong in my beliefs instead of doubting. Knowing that even though their hearts were breaking, they were breaking because of a higher power that I didn't know.

Eventually we fell out of going to our church. We had bought this house, leaving us a good drive to get there. Then came a time when money was scarce. There was no extra for anything and we had to cut back everywhere. Including gas to get to church. Lately we have tried attending a few of the churches closer to us, but I just can't seem to get motivated to get up and go. I have every intention on going Saturday night, but when Sunday morning rolls around, I just can't seem to move.

Belle was invited by our neighbor's child to attend vacation bible school with her a couple of weeks ago. After talking to Hubby about it, we eventually told her she could go and I sent her on her way. Later, she called asking to spend the night there and did. The next day, she came to me with questions about things she had "learned" at bible school. Turns out the kids were taught flat out that if "they weren't saved they would burn in the lakes of...." Yes, I understand the truth to that statement and yes, kids need to know that but when did bible school become about scaring the kids into salvation? Bible school I remember from growing up and helping out with was about singing, learning, crafts. There was nothing in there about fear. Then you get into the kids being saved for the wrong reason and then they are in the same boat I am. Doubting. Lucky for us, Belle came to me with her questions and worries.

What I hate is knowing that I am struggling but am trying to lead my children by raising them in the same situation that I grew up in. So I talk when they have questions and hope they understand. Questions they have that I can't answer immediately go to Hubby (the son and grandson of preachers.) I still can't help but feeling like the fraud that I am. I want my kids to be strong in faith and religion, but yet I am not myself. I am uncomfortable talking about it, but yet don't want my kids to be. Wondering if it's too late for me, if I've stalled to long but wanting to prevent that in my children.

Overall, two weeks later I'm still stunned. How could a church be so irresponsible to scare kids instead of teaching them? I know you're not supposed to ask shoulda, coulda, woulda, but what would've happened if Belle hadn't come to one of us? Now is time for us to decide what our next move is. For us and our family.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Yesterday seemed to be a day of surprises. The mother of a friend of Bryce called me Monday afternoon to see if she could set up a play date for our boys. All of her normal childcare hadn't worked out and I figured it was going to be something great for Bryce to do. Something besides whine. The friend came in bearing games to play for the Wii and they set out to conquer them. Brady was sitting on the floor next to them on his knees when I noticed that something just looked different. I couldn't explain it at first. Just different. Then I thought he just looked taller. So I called him over to the door frame where I measure them and had him stand up tall. He was 1/16" short of having grown a full inch over the course of the last. three. weeks. I knew something was different!

I went ahead and measured Bryce and Belle as well and found that Belle is well over 4'10" now. Bryce is 5'2" which means he is now officially taller than I am, at 11 years old. He is not aware of that information as I have not felt the need to share it with him. I'm going to relish in the fact that he thinks that I am still a tad bit taller than him.

We were up this morning with the sun as a storm moved through and stirred the rest of the house that wasn't already up. Bryce's friend's mother was either supposed to get him between 7:30 and 7:45 or her dad would be getting him between 8:30 and 8:45. He was up and dressed by the time I got out of bed at 7. Grandpa showed up and left me with three very wore out children. We took a walk this evening in the miserable heatwave that has gripped us. We came home, the kids showered and are now in bed for the night for much needed sleep. I am not far behind them, but not before I wind down first.

Monday, June 15, 2009

I Swear, I'm Trying!

When I started this blog, my intentions were to write about things going on in the family while working on my writing technique. It seems more and more that it is becoming a place for me to air my thoughts and complaints instead and that isn't what I want. I have to stop and force myself to think because days like today? I immediately remember the fighting that started within 15 minutes of breakfast. The arguing. The moaning and groaning. But with a little effort I can go back and remember how Brady decided to sneak off to the bathroom and write all over his face, how Belle cleaned up the bathroom by wiping down the sink, straightening shoes (that should've been put away) and folding wet towels to put on the back of the toilet for tomorrow (that I went back and hung up) and how I taught Bryce to cook his first frozen pizza, a skill that he will need for many years to come. I have to stop and think about how I noticed today one of Brady's eyes was darker than the other, Belle's hair is getting lighter from the summer sun, and how much taller Bryce has already gotten.

Then I think about other things that have been going on. Some things that I can't share and others that strike me as boring to write about (or rather scaring off what few readers I have). I think about issues that I consider blogging about but don't for the fear that I will come off as griping and complaining again so I put them aside, such as an experience Belle had last week at a local VBS (that story to come in a later post). Then I'm at a loss as to what to write about. I mean our days are basically the same day in and out. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Some arguing, fighting, sassing and playing thrown in at various points. Then baths and bedtime only to start over again tomorrow. Add a 16-month old to the mix on some days. Things can get crazy but run of the mill crazy.

So I am asking for help. An topics you want to hear my thoughts on? Any questions you've wondered but didn't ask? Anything you want to know about me that you'd like me to possibly share? Ask away. I could use the topic.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


You know where ever there is something that moves, no matter what the size, the kids are right there waiting and willing to help. This is how they helped this weekend.
They had a blast!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

There's Still a Big Hole in My Backyard

We started digging this huge hole in our backyard last summer for a pool that we had got. Unfortunately, it got too hot to dig, then the ground was too frozen and spring rolled around and then it was too wet. Hubby's step-dad knew we were trying to get this set up and on his way up to Indiana this week, stopped by and left us this. Hubby came in for a couple of hours yesterday and couldn't wait to get on it to try it out. Notice he's even still in uniform! As soon as it started up, his eyes glazed over and you saw that "kid with a new toy" look. Maybe this time next week the hole in our backyard will be level enough to make way for the rest of it!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Brady decided this weekend that he was ready for the surfer dude hair to be cut. I was so disappointed. I will be the first to admit he was beyond the need for a cut, but I didn't want the buzzed look again.He had eyes! Who knew?

Monday, June 8, 2009


I am sitting here trying to reflect on what I have shared and haven't shared as of late. The kids are enjoying their summer vacation. Thursday, Mom gave me a call and Brady answered the phone. After a quick hello, his next words were "CanwespendthenightonThursdayandFridaynight?" I swear there was no breaks in that sentence! We got up Thursday, went after Hubby, rented some movies for me and Hubby to watch, and Brady had his class party that had been canceled the week before. As soon as the party was over, I loaded them up (they had already packed) and took off to drop them off for two nights of child-free quiet.

Thursday night, we returned home, and Hubby and I showed how exhausted we were. We rented six movies, watched one and then crashed. We sacked out for the night by 11pm. Friday morning, we slept in, got up and went about our day. We ended up driving up north to the mall where I picked up a pair of $36 jeans for $13! Hubby got a few fishing lures and I got some bubble bath from Bath and Body works. I picked up two $9.50 bottles for $5! I was excited! We came back, watched four movies, played a little basketball and went to bed.

Saturday morning, I picked up the kids, brought them home, and ran to the grocery because I didn't shop on Friday. The kids played on the slip'n'slide all afternoon (Belle had a friend over) and we burned some of the wood in the backyard so the kids enjoyed toasting marshmallows before bed. Sunday, Hubby went back to his truck and is headed for New York again, and the kids and I came home to finish our day.

Now Belle and Brady just came in from playing in the water, Bryce is still outside in it. Little Man just woke up from a much needed nap after spending an hour upset before finally falling asleep. Seems he had a belly ache and was very upset over the whole deal when it finally subsided for him to sleep. Almost three hours later, he's up and running and doing great!

This weekend was great. I needed the recharge with the kids gone. Out of the six movies we rented, two I didn't care for a whole lot, one I haven't seen, and two were ok. Taken was a great movie though. That was the only one I would recommend out of the ones we rented. Now the kids have all moved inside so it's time for me to put my computer aside. Maybe tomorrow will start out easier.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The "No" Parent

Each family has a parent that is known as the "no" parent, I think. The parent that no matter what you ask, the answer is always no. I guess now that I have been raising my kids for the last 12 years (almost), I cannot honestly remember which of my parents that we went to first, the parent that was most likely to say yes. According to Belle, I have become the no parent and in some ways I have. I often find myself saying,

"No, you can't ride your bike around the block by yourself."

"No, you can't do that because they're doing it."

"No, you can't ride a four-wheeler with another 10-year old even if you go slow and are both wearing helmets."

What I'm not finishing up with is more information.

"No, you can't ride your bike around the block because there's a registered sex offender that lives down the street."

"No, you can't do that because they're doing it because their mother needs to be slapped for letting them do it."

"No, you can't ride the four-wheeler because it's a matter of time before her sixteen year old brother runs into her with the other one and she gets hurt."

Regardless of my reasoning for not letting them do things, Hubby feels that I'm too limiting, too over-bearing, too strict because he was allowed to much more than I was growing up. He also feels that the kids are going to rebel hard against me because I don't allow them to do everything they want to. He had a three-wheeler when he was their age. He ran the neighborhood because there was kids everywhere. I'm not saying they can't ride an atv, but with a trusted adult, not another child. I wouldn't mind having one myself. I had one in high school and I used to walk the streets with my neighbor. But times are different. There wasn't a constant stream of news where some adult assaulted/kidnapped some kid for various reasons. Hubby shot his sister with a b.b. gun growing up so am I supposed to line Belle up and just let the boys have at it because he did?

Exactly. Nothing is black or white and I am not going to be responsible for putting them in the position that allowed them to get hurt. I will stand my ground about the bike riding. I will stand my ground about the four wheeler and I will stand my ground about things kids are allowed to do today to get them out of their parents hair. I can't protect them from everything, that I know, but I'm not about to turn a blind eye to a situation and let them play with fire just because they want to do it. My feelings are that I didn't rebel that badly against my parents when I was growing up because of what I wasn't allowed to do and that maybe because I wasn't allowed to do more, what I did do wasn't that bad. Does that make sense?

My question is where is that parenting handbook that I've heard so much about? The one people say they've heard could be out there but they've never seen. Am I really too overprotective of my children or am I looking at this realistically?