Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Memories

Some of my fondest memories of growing up are from Christmastime at my maternal grandparent's house.
All my young life my grandparents lived 3 1/2 miles from us.  We saw them often.  We spent a lot of time at their house.  Sometime each December my grandparent's house would make a transition.  Christmas decorations went up.  I never saw it happen or ever helped to make it happen.  It just did. 

The first thing you would see upon pulling up in front of the house were the lawn ornaments.  A large painted plywood Santa Claus and some characters from Peanuts.  I know there were other things but I can't remember everything. But I remember those.  Seeing those meant that great things were about to happen.  Christmas!  

Inside the house was always decorated wonderfully. My grandfather always wore his very colorful Christmas vest. It was awesome. I'm not sure where he got it but he always wore it. There were decorations galore. Elves and old plush Santas. Red ribbons entwined in the lace of my grandmother's white milk glass pieces. My grandmother had handmade all of our stockings that were hung at her house.  All with very personal items attached to them. Old charms, a penny from our birth year, an old Brownie pin that was my mother's. White rabbit fur trim on the top.  I have mine still and it hangs now on the front door. It's one of my most cherished keepsakes because my grandmother, Mammaw Edie, made it just for me. 

As a grandmother I'm sure I will NEVER compare to my own grandparents. I do hope that in 30 years my grandkids will think back with good memories of us and our home.  Maybe they will remember the silly large inflatable snowman in the yard or Poppa's lights with the star on the fireplace.  Maybe they will remember the long mantle of stockings in the living room.  

Maybe, just maybe, they'll remember the decorations we bought just this past weekend.  We just couldn't pass them up.  A small Charlie Brown, Snoopy and Charlie Brown's famous Christmas tree. They are about 2 feet tall.  They immedietly reminded me of the Peanuts characters in my grandparents yard.  Maybe my grandkids will remember them the most.  Like I did.     

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lazy With No Dreams

That was me.  I've been lazy with no dreams for quite a while.  Years even.

I used to wake up, take the kids to school and then fall asleep in my chair around 10am.  In the evening after dinner I would try to fall asleep in my chair while we were watching television. Twice I dozed off while talking on the phone to my daughter.   If given the opportunity I'm sure I could have slept around the clock.  I'm not sure when the dreams stopped.  I'm pretty sure it was a gradual thing.  No happy dreams, weird dreams or even nightmares.

Why?  Obstructive Sleep Apnea

I snored.  Evidently it was pretty loud because family members could hear me no matter their location in the house.  Michael said he could even still hear me during his  morning shower!  I also would wake up several times in the middle of the night.

So, two sleep studies later and I have a magical machine next to my bed.  It's not pretty.  It has a long tube and a full face mask.  But now I don't stop breathing during the night.  Michael said I used to snore, gasp and struggle to breathe during the night.  Now he says it's nice and quiet.

So, now I'm sleeping during the night and I haven't wanted/needed to take a nap at all during the day!   And because I'm finally falling into a deeper sleep, I'm dreaming again.  Weird.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Heather does it again!

If you were lucky enough to read my Whack-a-Mole post you know that my 26 year old daughter has no trouble getting dirty.

So, we had some sort of clog in one of the main drains.  We spent 5 hours on Friday trying to snake it out from every plumbing orifice in this house.  I could not use the dishwasher, the kitchen sink, or the clothes washer!  I really NEEDED all of those things since every towel in the house was wet and gross from all the flooding....and when this happened the dishwasher was full of dirty dishes ready to be washed....ugh ugh.

After so many hours on Friday I asked Michael if we could just quit for the day.  So this morning Michael is sure that the clog is part of the plumbing that he replaced, so he knows what needs to be done.  All of this is in my crawl space.....and MY crawlspace is the reason they named that area under the house a CRAWLspace....Although it wouldn't have hurt to name them Army Crawlspaces.  Seriously.

 So, I call Heather(she's supposed to be here in 2 hours so I can babysit for her) and I ask what she's doing. She says getting the kids dressed.  I say "Can you just throw them in the car and go down in the crawlspace with your dad?".  Her exact reply was "yes, be there in a minute".
So, Heather crawls under the house over to the big line that must have the clog.  Luckily it was attached with a rubber connector with clamps....we have super old and nasty pipes.  She was able to open the pipe, and with the help of a long coat hanger, pull out a clog that was VERY large....mind you there was disgusting water behind that clog.  She came up soaking wet.  Michael supervised her because there's not a lot of room down there and if you can get one skinny person in there you've got it made.
At least this time the plumbing didn't involve used toilet water...if you get my drift.

So, the score goes like this.
Old house with really crappy plumbing - 0
Heather - 2



Thursday, July 14, 2011

NOOK Color

First things first. My hubby spoils me. Almost 30 years of marriage and he can still surprise me. For my birthday this year Michael and the little kids surprised me with 3 different gifts on 3 different days. Gift 1 was a signed photo of my fave hockey player- Mason Raymond. Gift 2 was a NOOK Color! Gift 3 was an authentic Vancouver Canucks jersey with of course Raymond and 21 on the back. ALL wonderful presents on their own. Michael went a little overboard.

The NOOK Color is unbelievable! I had a regular NOOK but this new one is amazing. Besides it holding all 76 of my ebooks it does everything. Email, web browser, Facebook, Twitter etc etc etc. It's fast too.  Just as fast as my macbook. I am seriously in awe. Forgot to mention I can load pictures and music on it. And there are even Angry Birds. Now I have no clue what the Kindle can do because I've never held one.  No way it can compare though.

I am obviously the NOOK Color's biggest fan.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

What's going on with my TV shows.

Last night FOX Broadcasting canceled 2 more of my fave shows.  That makes 3 in the last year.  The 3 shows were Terriers, Lie To Me, and The Chicago Code.

I think it's just a coincidence that all 3 shows were created by Shawn Ryan.  Seriously, the man makes great TV.  The Shield did wonderful as did his show The Unit.

Each of the shows were really great.  Those kind of shows where you look forward to each new episode.

So, what are people watching if they aren't watching the "good" shows?  I understand that the canceled shows didn't have good enough "numbers".....not enough viewers.  So, where are the viewers?  Are they watching more cable than network shows?  I remember once thinking "How can Jersey Shore be so popular and all the good shows have minimal viewers?!"  

Last of my rant.  Soap Operas.  I don't watch them anymore but there was a time I loved every show that ABC had on.  They started at noon with All My Children, then One Life To Live at 1pm, and finally General Hospital at 2pm.  I did turn them on a couple of times in the last month.  You can go a few years without watching one then jump back in and not miss too much.  And there are always nice familiar faces.  ABC has lost their minds by canceling the first two mentioned above.  There's talk about General Hospital being dumped eventually as well.

I guess I'm just stuck watching mediocre television.  :-(

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Vancouver Canucks!

Wow!  It's been a little over a year since I fell in love with hockey.  After that local game back in January, I looked at NHL teams, read a little about some of them and picked the lucky winner of my devotion.  The Vancouver Canucks.  The Washington Capitals were a close 2nd but I could only have one fave team.

It's been an awesome year.  The end of that first season (09-10) ended in the 2nd round of playoffs in early May. I was thrilled to see the new team I had started to follow did well enough to go to the playoffs.  Fast forward a bit to Oct. 2010 and the new season starts.  I could not wait!!  Michael even purchased NHL Center Ice from our cable company so we could watch every single NHL game if we wanted to.  79 games down and I haven't missed one of them!

I have learned SO much about hockey this season.  I understand the rules, the game, the players and their positions.  I keep up with the standings of ALL teams.  I read pre-game and post-game reports.  I check out the opposition before each game.  I read about game day morning practice sessions.  I've become seriously addicted and I love it!!

So, where are we now?  We've won the coveted President's Trophy.  This is given to the team that finishes with the most points in the league during the regular season.  We have 3 games left in the regular season and we are off to the playoffs.  Oh yeah, we are #1 in the NHL.  Did I pick a great team to follow or what???!!!  

I still have no desire to watch football, soccer, baseball etc on tv.  I do understand now my husband's behavior during his beloved Dallas Cowboy & Texas Rangers games.  

It's true. 
If you holler loud enough at the television, the players, coaches, refs......yeah, they can all hear you!

Go Canucks and thank you for introducing me to the awesome game of hockey!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I am the most boring person in the world.  I bore myself which is sad since I'm the person I'm with most of the time.

Can a person sleep too much?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Well, some of my babies are gone.  They've headed back to Kentucky.

All my kids & grandkids live here in Wichita except for my daughter, son-in-law and 3 little ones.  They were here for 2 wonderful weeks.  It was noisy, the house was dirty, there was major chaos but I don't mind so much really.  Told Brayden, he's 3, that I'd miss him and he said "I miss you too Gramma".  What a sweetie.

A few things about each of my grandkids.

Jacob 6 - The first grandkid.  He's active, loves Ben10 stuff, his DS, and has had a mad obsession with dinosaurs his entire life.  Loves his Gramma.

Ellie 6 -  The first granddaughter..  She's loves all things princess. She can be "all girl" or  a "all tomboy" depending on the time and place.  AKA EllieGirl.  Loves her Gramma.

Caedmon - 4  The first of the 3 boy cousins all born within 5 months of each other.  He's smart, funny, has his own opinions about things.  Loves all things Batman.  Loves his Gwamma, aka Gramma.

Gabriel - 4  A sweetie of a boy!  Gabe love to play.  He would make a perfect only child because he's happy either on his own or in a group.   Very cuddly.  AKA GabyBaby.  Loves his Gramma.

Malachi - 4  Very cuddly.  A definite introvert.  LOVES computers, cell phones, video games.  Is going to be a supersmart brainy nerd.  aka Kai Kai.    Loves his Kai Kai, aka Gramma.

Brayden - 3 Super active boy!  Loves matchbox cars & trains.  He jumps, darts, rolls and is totally fearless.  aka Mijo.  Loves his Mija, aka Gramma.

Kylie -2 Adorable little girl.  Loves elmo. Happy all the time.  Likes to sing and loves her Daddy.
Loves Gramma

Abigail -1 The baby(so far).  She's funny & huggable.  Like her Mommy she has 3 older brothers and can hold her own among them.  They best not mess with her or endure her wrath.  aka Abbi or BooBoo.  Loves her Gramma.  

I could write for hours about each of these kiddos.  All different in so many ways.  I love to have them here all at the same time.  Holidays when everyone can be here are the best.   Right now I'll just enjoy the quiet for a time and look forward to grandkids coming over.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring Break

I'm tired and need a nap.  My house is 3/4 way to being a total disaster.  I'm so far behind on laundry.  Glad the kids don't have school because it doesn't matter what they wear.  

It's beautiful outside.  I have at least a full day's work that needs done to clean the garage.  About the same amount of time for each yard, front & back.


WORST game of Whack-A-Mole. ever.

Let me first say.  I ABHOR basketball.  I don't care who is playing or why they are playing.  I don' t care to watch 8+ games a day.

Saturday.  One of the kids notices there is water in the backyard.  Upon inspection by Heather it is determined that sewage is backing up out of the clear-out pipe.   So, the clear-out pipe is what you snake when you have a clog......but what do you snake when the clear-out pipe is clogged??

Where are the men?

My clear-out pipe did not have a cap on it because one of our dogs ate it about 10 years ago.  I  mention this because this is a WONDERFUL thing.  Had I had a cap on there the sewage would have had no where else to go but back up into the house.  Oh wouldn't that have been a pleasure!  Yeah, NO.

Where are the men?

First plan of attack was to send the hose down with a high-pressure nozzle on it to see if we could dislodge the clog.  No such luck.  Some things came up......this is where the title to the post came from.  My oldest son was outside watching.  Yes, watching.  It was dark and he turned on his cell phone flashlight.  At one point I told him to point it back on Heather as she was having to grab "things" coming up out of the pipe so they did not go back down.  That's when Jarrett said, " Worst game of whack-a-mole ever!".   I should probably  mention now the protective rubber gloves Heather is wearing.

Where are the men?

So, dark, raining, still clogged.  We gave up for the night.

Sunday.  I make a trip to Home Depot.  Mike, the son-in-law, goes grocery shopping.  Husband cooks his famous french toast and bacon for breakfast. I then run to another son's house to pick up a small hand auger that he has.  Try the auger in both toilets. Nothing.  Put a cap on the clear-out pipe thinking maybe just a little back pressure will flush out the clog.  Nope. This is getting serious.  We are nearing "call the plumber" stage.
I go to Home Depot, again, and rent a very large electric 100 foot sewer snake.  Heather and I wrestle it into the back yard and get started.  God bless her.  She's the one standing in the muck feeding the snake into the pipe.  I'm standing on dry ground about 4 feet away working the power on the snake machine.  I did occasionally have to do the following things for her....pull her pants up for her.  Push her hair out of her face.  Get a piece of hair out of her mouth.  Let her scratch her face against my shoulder. etc.

Where are the men?

We did get a bit of supervision (from the men) after a few attempts to snake the pipe.  After about 30 minutes or so, and 50 feet of snake,  Heather finally broke through the clog.

I won't describe it.  Trust me and just be thankful for that.

So, total $ spent today to unclog the main drain from the house - $65.   No clue what a plumber would have charged but I'm sure it would have been much more.

I'm very proud to have a daughter who takes after me and isn't afraid to fix things herself.  I've learned a lot of stuff doing things like this as they came up.  I've replaced thermostats on clothes dryers (easy).  I've replaced spark plugs and wires on a Miata, I removed and replaced an alternator on my son's old truck.  I can change a tire.  I can change my oil & filter (if I wanted to). etc.

So you men can have your basketball March Madness or whatever, but don't holler at us if we don't put your tools up exactly how we found them.  The toilets flush and that is what's important here.

We defeated the Whack-A-Mole!

Friday, March 18, 2011


*SIGH*  A conversation I had with Davis this morning.

Davis - You know that stuff that you cough up in your mouth?  And you either spit it out or swallow it?
Me - Yes, what about it?
Davis - Mine is green.  Here, I'll show you. (Sticking finger in his mouth)
Me - NO! I don't want to see it.  Go spit it out.  I believe you.
Davis - Sometimes when I'm in bed I swallow it.  Or, I put it in your ear. (laughing).
Me - You're disgusting!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

There is something seriously weird about my kids.

What is wrong with my kids??!! Lots of name calling in the car on the way home from school! 

Rylie: You're Benjamin Franklin!
Davis: No, you're Benjamin Franklin!
Davis: You're John Wilkes Booth!
Rylie: Well, if I'm John Wilkes Booth then you are Abe Lincoln! *pause*    OH BURN!

My kids are nerds!!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Snow Days

Snow Days.

What a load of crap.

My kids LOVE to hear that school is canceled because of snow.  The worst thing is I think they enjoy it because they now have a whole day at home with me to make my life a difficult, let's just say difficult.

Come on!  It's Kansas people.  It snows.  Quit canceling school.  My kids go to a private school which means no bussing so it's not like there are kids waiting out in the -10 waiting on a bus.  I have to drive them to school every day.  I don't mind at all driving in ice or snow. BOTH of my vehicles are 4X4.

PLEASE let me bring my kids to school!