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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Dear HP: I Dislike the Test Page

I should just write these letters to the companies that I'm angry with but it always makes me feel a little better once I write them to myself (and anyone who actually visits my blog). 
Dear HP,
I'd like to thank you for using all of my blue and black ink by printing out a test page every time I turn the printer off, forget to have paper readily available or one of my kids opens the door to the cartridge holder area.  It's really great to spend a fortune on ink only to have it all used up by test pages.  Then I go to print something I really wanted only to have it not work, even though I've only printed a handful of positively useful coupons/pictures/whatevers and an even smaller handful of completely useless something or other that the kids or I wanted to print.  For instance, today I wanted to print an awesome Target coupon and instead I got a splotchy printout that Target probably won't accept.  I'll try anyway but not knowing if it will work or not is really annoying.  This is a seriously awesome coupon- $10 gift card with purchase of $50 or more.  And I'm not sure if it will work because your a test page-happy printer that steals all of my ink.  Maybe if the coupon works I should use it to buy a different brand, one that doesn't steal ink. 

Monday, November 14, 2011

Horrified by the Toddler

I guess with Jonas almost being 4 he is more kid than toddler but that's not the point.  The point is how horrible I felt yesterday after he said something mean. 
The kids and I were chilling in the alley behind our house yesterday- it's the hangout for the neighborhood, which isn't saying much since there are like 7 kids in the neighborhood and 4 of them are mine.  
Anyway, they were playing and I was reading Eclipse (don't judge).  Jonas was about 10 feet away, riding his tricycle when one of the neighbors (a nice young adult that the kids usually adore) walked by.  He was a totally innocent bystander, just walking to the grocery store or his car when he passed Jo.  I heard Jonas say something and it sounded mean.  Instead of waiting and talking to him after like a smart parent of a horrible 3 year old I made the mistake: "What did you say, Jonas?"
Neighbor said, "I think he said 'get away from me'."
Then evil little Jonas said, "NO!  I said, 'Yoooou arrrre Uuuuuugly."  He wanted to make sure we heard him clearly this time. 

I swear my freakin' heart stopped.  I started fumbling for the right words to say, wondering if there were any right words to respond to something so awful.  What do you say when your kid is a big stinkin' meanie?  I started apologizing and saying stupid things.  I was telling Jo how mean that was and he had to apologize.  The neighbor was all, "It's okay" but how can I believe that when I'm so horrified. 
I told Jason what happened and was all freaked out wondering if the neighbor thought Jonas said it because we had said it.  Having your child do something so awful to someone else just screams BAD PARENTS.  I don't know if it's worse because I've never said that about anyone in front of the kids.  I guess maybe I've been watching tv and said, "oh that person is ugly" or something like that but I've never looked someone in the eye and said it, nor have I talked badly about anyone's lack of attraction behind their backs (except famous people).  I'm so very self-conscious about the way I look so I'm not all about to hop aboard the let's-make-fun-of-the-way-other-people-look train.  I typically ascribe the term ugly to behavior rather than appearance.  This bothers me. 
I tend to worry too much what other people think about me and in a case like this I'm going way over board, at least Jason says so.  I'm still totally freaked out by the whole ordeal and I just want to avoid any future that involves the neighbor walking by me when I'm anywhere near my child.  I just hope he doesn't feel too bad.  I know I would.       

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Dip- So Yum...But...

Did you know that when you search for Buffalo Chicken Dip on the net that the majority of your top search results will give you recipes using canned chicken.  Ewww.  Not only is that not nearly as good as fresh chicken but it's much healthier to use fresh.  No canned nastiness, no extra salt or other additives.  That's a win for fresh.  My guess is that maybe some big companies that produce canned chicken paid extra for top spots in the search engines, or they partnered with companies that they could benefit from so that they'd end up in the top when you search for specifics, like dips.  Sure it might be easier, by like, a few minutes.  But I just throw everything in the crock pot and it's ready to go later that day.  Which is exactly what I plan to do for tonight when I host my Premier Designs jewelry party! 
Now...who's coming to MY party??! 

Oh and by the way, here's a recipe for some Buffalo Chicken Dip using fresh chicken:
Buffalo Chicken Dip.  Sure, you could substitute regular for canned using any recipe you come across, or I could support the people who make it better by sharing one of their links instead :) 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Trick-or-Treat or Snowball Fights for Halloween?

Well it looks like the possibility of snow for South Central PA is becoming more of a reality as a storm heads our way!  It's supposed to be here by Saturday morning.  It isn't the first time snow has visited us in October but I honestly can't remember the last time it happened.  My kids are excited for sure!  We have a lot of Halloween and Autumn activities planned for this weekend, including a hay ride on Saturday and trick-or-treating on Halloween and I really hope the snowstorm doesn't ruin our activities.  I'm not worrying too much just yet- plenty of storms that were "certain" to hit us missed us entirely.  Something to do with the valley we live in making weather somewhat unpredictable, I think. 

I like to visit for weather-related news because they have radar, which I'm completely addicted to watching.  I live in the approximate center of the teeny tiny picture below but you can see the giant mass of snow headed my way.  I'm not rushing out to buy my milk, eggs and bread just yet but it looks like this one might get us. 


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Dear Baby Doll Makers

A letter to the makers/creators of toys:

My boys want dolls.  But my boys want BOY dolls.  They want boy Crib Life dolls and on that note they also want boy Zoobles (although I still think they are way overpriced).  They want boy Squinkies (THANK YOU Squinkies, you're on the right track!!). 

At least my 3 year old boy wants boy versions.  I don't think my 18 month old cares just yet and seems happy playing with pink stuff, though we did pick up a baby dressed in blue just for him.  But all I hear ALL DAY LONG is, "Mommy, mommy, mommy I want a boy Crib Life" and, "Mommy, mommy, mommy I want a boy Zooble!". 

So here's a hint: some boys want boy versions of girl toys.  Think about it please.  And while you're at it, think about a pink nerf gun.  My daughter would totally appreciate it. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Money or Mama

I was chatting with the kids today and Amara asked for a trampoline after I announced a win (2nd this week- yeah!!).  I told her that trampolines cost a lot more than my prize and that they were too much money, not to mention too big for our yard.  She asked why one of her friends has one.  I had to explain that some people need or choose to work and that some people need or choose to stay home and that we were the latter family.  I told her that if I worked that we could probably afford a trampoline and asked her if she'd rather have more money or more mommy. 

Suddenly my house erupted in a cacophony of kids protesting.  From one end of the house I heard from Zachary, "more mommy!  I want you to be home!!".  From the dining room (our common room) Amara was telling me that daddy would never get her to school on time and telling me how much she wants me to be home.  Jonas was saying, "stay home mommy, I love you." and Henry said, "uv you mama.  Kiss." 


We don't have a lot of money but I'm thinking that we made the right decisions (sort of by choice and sort of by necessity) for our family.  And I wouldn't have it any other way! 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Common Sense, Common Courtesy

I'm a very passive person.  I let people walk all over me, allow people to talk down to me and rarely stand up for myself.  So my outlet for complaint is my head, my blog, friends or Jason.  Today, it's my blog because my head hurts from the smoke, my phone is dead and J's at work.  He'd tell me to suck it up and say something anyway.

If I were working in someone's home I would never consider doing anything that wasn't approved by them- I wouldn't help myself to the kitchen without asking, I wouldn't go into their bedroom without being invited and I certainly never, ever would smoke in someone's house.  If I walked into an obviously smoke-free home I wouldn't even dream of asking to smoke in their house (not that I smoke, but if I did) and I would NEVER throw cigarette butts anywhere but the trash while outside and away from open doors. 

So why, I wonder, would anyone ever come into MY house and do the above without asking?  WHY?????  Why would you bring your disgusting cigarettes into my house and then proceed to smoke them without an invite from me, the freaking homeowner.  Yeah, sure it's in the basement where no one but the grownups go to do laundry but it travels, guys.  I'm sitting in the dining room trying not to puke.  I'm much too passive a person to say anything, just the thought of it makes me sick to my stomach.  About as sick as the cigarette smoke makes me feel. 

I just feel  And headachy.  I'm glad I have somewhere to go tonight- I can air out the house.  And maybe this weekend I'll buy some NO SMOKING signs for the house.  I can deal with passive-agressive. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

When I Grow Up...

I like to imagine what my kids will be like as adults.  What they'll do for a living, whether they will have 1 kid, 5 kids or none, will they stay close to home or move far away...that kind of stuff.  Of course I enjoy them as they are now and don't want it to fly by, I just like to wonder. 
I see Zachary as an engineer on a construction site, helping to create awesome buildings, playing video games and spending time with his wife and 2 kids in his free time.  He will take them out for ice cream often.  I picture Amara as a working mom with 1 child and a stay-at-home husband.  She is an entomologist, teaching at a local college or nature center and creates art in her free time.  She may have a few too many pets.  Jonas will be a police officer- a good guy who makes sure that the streets are safe for kids and families.  Maybe he'll have kids, maybe not.  I can't tell yet.  He'll love playing sports.  Henry...well he is going to drive fast cars and motorcycles and play lots of basketball.  He's still a baby and that's what he loves, haha!

My dreams for Jonas were crushed when we were driving home from school today. 
Me: Jonas, what do you want to be when you grow up?
Jonas: Hmmmm....nothing.
Me: Nothing?  You have to be something when you grow up, like a firefighter or a teacher. 
Jonas: I...waaaant to be....a.... TREE! 
Me: A tree?  Like those?  (I point to a line of trees)
Henry: Mama, Jonas ook!  Teeee!
Jonas: Yes!!  A tree like that. 
Me: You know, if you grow up to be a tree you will have to learn to not walk or talk.  Trees can't move and they can't say anything. 
Jonas: Trees don't talk?  They don't walk or talk?  Maybe not.  Maybe I won't be a tree.
Me: That's probably a good idea.  So what else would you like to be?
Jonas: Mommy, are you going the speed limit?  You didn't stop at the stop sign. (Hence the police officer career assigned to him)Henry: Mama, mama!  Ook ook.  Baketball!!  Cycle, vroom vroom!  (He doesn't miss a basketball net or court, or the motorcycles)

Me: Jonas, I didn't need to stop at that sign, it was for the other way.  And yes, I am going the speed limit.
Jonas: Okay.  You have one more chance.     

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Orville Redenbacher's Lime + Salt Popcorn

I was grocery shopping at Giant yesterday and made my regular popcorn stop.  My kids love popcorn and my 3 year old loves to make it for everyone.  Who am I to argue with one less snack to make?  I am somewhat familiar with my available options and usually select the cheapest.  If two are priced the same I select the one that looks the best at the time.  Besides Jolly Time's Kettle Corn they all taste pretty much the same to me. 
But yesterday I saw something different- maybe the color describing what kind of popcorn it was?  I was looking specifically for a popcorn that would get me my 100 points towards gas and this box was one of them.  Lime + Salt.  New?  I like lime in my salty food so this was a no brainer.  Plus it says "No Artificial Ingredients".  Huh...I'll look into that some more later.  I'm a big fan of healthy foods and try lean more toward the "healthy" processed stuff.  Tossed it into my cart, along with a regular flavor just in case this experiment turned out to be awful. 
Fast forward to today, when I decided to give it a test.  The smell?  YUM.  The flavor?  It's actually very mild but I like it!  It's enough flavor that I don't need any "butter" which is pretty cool.  I won't knock anyone down to grab it but if it stays on the shelves I'll pick it up from time to time. 
How does it measure up to Orville's Movie Theater Butter?  Did you know they add color to buttered popcorn?  Ummm...why?  The Lime+Salt actually has 20 more calories per serving.  Fat is the same, Saturated Fat is better for L+S.  The other noticeable differences are more sodium in L+S and way more Potassium in the Movie Theater Butter. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Jonas Loves Reading

If your kid isn't 3-ish, you don't care what a 3 year old is reading, or you'd rather see what a 10 year old is reading then you can check out Zachary Loves Reading or stay tuned for what my 6 year old daughter loves to read. 

We love books and maybe we have just a few too many in our storage-unfriendly house.  Yet we still go to the library and take out MORE books.  I'm still not sure a Kindle will ever take the place of a real book.  Kids (or maybe just my kids) don't seem to notice the difference between a computer, video game or electronic device of any sort.  I hate to think that they think I'm playing games when I'm really reading.  I want them to love reading and it seems that only a book could really do that. 

On a recent trip Jonas (3 1/2 years old) choose two books to check out.  He is so cute with his seriousness when it's time to chekout our books.  He insists that he hold his card himself and he will patiently and calmly stand in line.  If you know anything about Jo this statement above would make you crack up, or at the very least you would smother a laugh.
I didn't write down the titles or authors of these books.  1 wasn't the least bit memorable- a lesson we learn frequently, but don't get upset over since the library is FREE!  The other he absolutely LOVED.  After I read it to him a few times he read it back to me.  Then he read it to big sis Amara and little brother Henry.  Over and over.  Fortunately it was a good book and they didn't mind.   

It was called "I Feel a Foot!" 
  I Feel a Foot!
and is about some animal friends sleeping in the woods.  They wake up after Turtle hears a sound and go off to investigate.  They all are trying to figure out what it is they have found in the dark and all have their own ideas.  It's fun, colorful, creative and easy to read.  It's not long so kids won't get bored.  Important for jumpy, active children!  Jonas and I definitely recommend this book. 

Another one of Jo's abso. favorite books is called "Dinosaurs Love Underpants".Dinosaurs Love Underpants 

We have read this book into destruction- I seriously need to re-staple all the pages back together and tape some tears.  I'm not sure he'll ever tire of it.  When you first open the book there are a whole bunch of pairs of underpants and each time we read it we choose our favorite pair.  The story has a lot of rhyming words and is about how cavemen were tired of not having clothes so they made underwear.  The dinosaurs loved them so much that they took them and started fighting over them until they were all destroyed (how did you think dinosaurs became extinct???).  Totally fun for dino lovers but if you hope this book will help your potty-hating child then you might be disappointed.  It was why I got the book in the first place- "Hey Jo, these dinosaurs love underpants so much so don't you want to wear them all the time too?"  Nope- didn't happen.  But it's a great book and lots of fun to read again and again.  

We also read "Where the Wild Things Are" a few times but I wasn't that impressed.  Where the Wild Things Are

I thought it would be a totally awesome book but maybe I'm just missing something?  Jonas enjoyed it quite a bit though. 
On the subject of Maurice Sendak, I came across a book once in a grocery store called "Last Night I Dreamed a Circus"
Last Night I Dreamed a Circus

which I bought without even opening (which I've never done).  Just reading the title inspired me to purchase the book for my daughter, who used to wake up and tell me about some insane dreams that she would have.  The stories were fascinating!  I wasn't disappointed and this book absolutely reminded me of her dreams.  This book comes Maurice Sendak- recommended.

What's on your 3 year old childs must-read list?  What were your favorite books as a child? 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Vent, Rant, a Little Bit of Whine

It's almost the end of the summer...and what awesome adventures have we gone on?  None.  Why?  Well I can't get ANYTHING done.  Nothing.  EVER.  Half way into any chore I get sidetracked by kid A fighting kid B or kid C taking kid A's toys.  Then I give up and we don't get to go have fun.  And this happens every. single. day. 
Ugh.  I'm in such a rut and today started off worse than normal.  Usually I wake up earlier than everyone because I need time to wake up or I'm a monster, and it's the only time I'm awake alone.  And I can maybe get 1 of my 7 loads of needed laundry done.  But today I fell back to sleep because my alarm went off in the middle of a dream (don't you hate that?).  When I woke up I was completely bombarded by my older two.  My oldest is 10 and has ADHD and he won't ever be quiet.  It's "quack quack screeeeeeeeech mommy mommy mommy mommmy guess what guess what I can [blah blah blah] AHHHHH quack reeee eeeeeeeeee!"  How anyone could handle that the instant they wake up is beyond me, and I'm a terrible example of a patient and tolerant person.  My 6 year old daughter LOVES to tattle and loves to scream at the top of her lungs if her older brother makes her mad.  All the parenting books in the world haven't solved that one yet.  It's only 9:30 and I'm already ready to throw in the towel and give up for the day.  1 isn't even awake yet!  
To top it off, it's raining.  Which normally isn't so bad- we play in the rain often.  But there's some pouring involved.  I can't coordinate rainy-day activities because I can't even find a place to coordinate them.  Nowhere is safe from the mess of kids.  With the age ranges of 1-10 we have play spaces in every nook and cranny (of which there aren't many- my house is a rectangle with no closets to hide clutter on the first floor- the living spaces) so there are toys and things everywhere.
My house is a mess (and when people say their house is a mess and there's like 2 things on their counters, maybe a blanket askew, a throw pillow fell on the floor and they might need to run the vacuum over the carpet once I hate them- I want to say "come see my house and tell me that your house is a "wreck").  My house is a real, live, serious mess and I can't even clean it because I'm playing ref to my team constantly.  I can only sit here and wonder when I'll ever be able to clean it.  And organized...well that might never happen.  And boy oh boy would I just love it if my kids would clean up after themselves once, without me having to hunt them down and force them to do it.  So I'm constantly at war with my kids and house and always losing the fight. 

I know some of this is my fault.  I know there are things I could do and steps I could take to prevent these things from happening as often as they do.  It doesn't help I have some sort of issue with being tired all the time.  And not "mom tired".  I am purely exhausted throughout the day, regardless of what I eat or what I'm doing.  At around 6 I hit a wall and almost completely crash.  It takes everything in my power to keep myself going for the next 4-5 hours.  Being this tired does nothing for my stress levels and ability to handle craziness AND being the head of house.  Where's hubby?  He's at work from about 8:30-9pm so I'm going it alone most of the time.  If you read my blog regularly you know that he is on a quest to lose some weight.  He stays after work to workout at the office building's gym.  One day he's going to have to quit and start somewhere that we can all go so that I can get these kids out of the house and give myself some peace.

I just need to vent.  To hear that others might be going through something similar (stories please).  Some SOLUTIONS!                  

Thursday, August 4, 2011


I got to spend a lot of time with my grandpa and grandma when I was growing up.  We lost my grandfather many years ago and the other day I was talking about a book that reminded me of him.  The book is called "Could Be Worse" (look it up- it's a great book).  My perspective might not be what he really was, or how he really was but I was a young girl who got to hang out with my grandparents regularly and in my mind it was special every time.  I'm glad I only remember the good parts, or maybe there never were bad parts.  I wonder if my mom's story about my time with them when I was little would be different.  This is about memories and grandparents- the ones we have and are grateful for, and the ones we wish were never lost.   

Grandpa and Grandma Knaub:  My mom's dad was the silent type.  Ask him a question and by the time he answered you were pretty sure that he either never heard you or had decided not to answer.  This was just how he was, or how I remember him.  I would spend the night many Friday nights.  I don't recall a lot of discussion for our Friday night schedule, it was just how it was.  At 8pm my grandma or I would turn on the tv and put on the channel that showed TGIF.  We loved watching Full House, Step By Step, Family Matters and whatever other shows entertained us from 8-10pm.  Then it was "bed time".  This ritual included story time.  My grandma would sometimes tell me this story about a legend- a talking fox in Japan.  I don't recall the story but remember it was a little scary (but I also really enjoyed it).  We (and sometimes just I) would read Grimm's Fairy Tales.  I loved those stories.  If I remember correctly, this was when it was Grandpa's time to shine.  Grandma would go to bed and he would silently get out the table, the checkers board and pieces and set up our checkers game.  We would play and chat.  I don't remember who won and it didn't matter. 
In the morning I would wake to the smell of cinnamon pancakes.  They were perfect every time.  My grandma used a simple recipe- I think it's just flour, milk and egg, like a crepe.  Then she buttered it and sprinkled on cinnamon and sugar.  I've made it for my kids and some of them like it.  It's still one of my favorite things to eat.  That and my mom's creamed eggs are two of my favorite comfort breakfast foods. 
I also remember some other things from my time there.  I used to love, love, love sitting down in the basement on a stool playing on the typewriter, listening to the "how dry I am" dog and pretending that the bar was my office.  I loved pushing the very old stroller around the "scary" part of the basement, though it was never so scary when my grandpa was in the workshop that was in the same room.  The giant pine tree in the backyard was my secret hideout.  I bet I was real sneaky with my bright pink outfits hiding in that sparse growth.  The house behind theirs, beyond the bushes and down the little hill (which looked big when I was little) was certainly occupied by a witch.  To my family- you probably know and love many of the things I'm talking about!  If not, ask someone about them.  My grandfather died from a heart attack years ago.  Hopefully my grandma will be around for many years to come.  My mom had me when she was 29, I think.  Once I asked my grandma how old she was and she said, "26".  I'm happy to keep it that way :)

Grandpa and Grandma Klineyoung: Because of some circumstances beyond our control I wasn't able to spend as much time with my dad's parents.  Though I loved them both I was closer to my grandfather, perhaps because I didn't grow up with my dad and he was a good figure to look up to.  Even as an adult I felt like a kid whenever I saw him.  Not like I felt I was being treated like a kid, but like I wanted him to play ball with me or something.  I was glad I got a few years of visits and time with them after I had kids.  I remember when they had crabs for dinner (or lunch).  I was TERRIFIED.  I was maybe 6 and was sure these grotesque things were going to eat me.  I still won't eat crabs.  I remember spending time with my cousins.  I don't recall much of the house but as an adult I am in love with the style of house in which they lived, so it must have had an impact on me.  We lost them both recently, only a few years ago and I am reminded that time here is short; time with the people you love, doing the things you love, is limited.

My kids are lucky.  They have their Obasan (my mom- grandma in Japanese...and I hope I spelled that correctly because I'm not spell-checking), Grandma and Grandpa Weaver (Jason's dad and step-mom), Nana (Jason's mom), Grandpa Ron (my dad- he calls himself Papa Ron, they call him grandpa), Japanese Grandma (my mom's mom) and also their great-grandparents Abuelo and Abuela (Jason's step-mom's parents) and Mom Mom and Pop Pop (Jason's grandparents).  They have a unique and special relationship with all of them and I hope that continues for years to come.  I hope they can grow up with fond memories with all of them.  As it is, I'm sure they will!                    

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Zachary Loves Reading

My kids and I love to read.  Here are a few of 10 year old Zachary's favorite books and current reading material.  These are actually fun to read with the whole family and reading with your kids is a great way to spend a lazy day.  When reading is fun kids will want to do it and these books fit the bill of encouraging reading. 

Zachary has been enjoying The Magic Tree House series for 2 or 3 years now. 

He has over 20 of them (but isn't even close to completing the collection of over 60 books)!  The Magic Tree House series is by Mary Pope Osbourne and is about two children, Jack and Annie, who go on adventures back in time after discovering a magic tree house full of books.  These two are great role models for kids, with their brains and kindness.  There are some factual events (history lessons!) and mythical exploration as well.  New to me, there is also a kind of spin-off series by the author titled The Merlin Missions, beginning with Christmas in Camelot), so that older kids can continue their journey with Jack and Annie while still being challenged in reading. 

He is also reading the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. 

There are currently 5 books in the series, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Roderick Rules, The Last Straw, Dog Days, The Ugly Truth, plus the Diary of a Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book which is a fun journal for kids.  A 6th book in the series will be coming out in the fall of 2011: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever.  
Diary of a Wimpy Kid is about middle-schooler Greg Heffley's.  His mother buys and forces him to keep a diary- we get to enjoy his daily (and realistic pre-teen) life, from mean big brother Roderick to his annoying little brother Manny, bullies and other growing up challenges. 

I'll be sharing the other kids' favorites soon.  What are your kids reading? 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Technorati Made Me Do It- Don't Bother Reading

I'm just testing and confirming and signing up for way too many things.  8895V4MSUTXE

The Weavers on a Diet! Week...4

Jason is on- I think- his 4th week of diet and exercise.  Still no pictures- sorry.  He's been working out 4-5 times a week at his "cheap" work gym.  $30/month is NOT cheap.  But I'm hoping once he gets into the habit he'll downgrade to a more reasonably priced gym.  Like Planet Fitness with their $10 montly membership or we could upgrade to a family membership at the JCC or something like that.  He's also dieting but still on an Atkin's-style thing.  So I am trying to buy some fish and using his diet as my excuse to buy quinoa, whole grain pasta, brown rice and more veggies that he can't object to eating since he's trying to lose weight.  Win for me! 
I got to try okra for the first time in my jambalaya and no one even noticed this new (and significant- I put in a lot) addition.  They also didn't notice the brown rice replacing the white rice.  Except for Zachary, but he has sensory processing issues so I wasn't surprised.  He's the prince to the Princess and the Pea.    

At the start of Jason's weight loss plan he was at a shocking and scary 289 (he's 5'10).  He was wearing an XXL shirt and those were starting to get tight on him.  He had some nasty man boobies going on.  Pant size- who knows! 
The first week he was let down when he didn't lose anything.  I reminded him that it usually doesn't show up right away and that we would notice it in his clothes before the scale. 
The 2nd week he reported a weight of 279 for a total loss of 10 lbs.  I noticed some chest shrinkage. 
At the end of last week (week 3) he had lost an additional 2lbs for a total weight of 277.  This is the first time I noticed a difference.  He put on a shirt that just a few months ago ceased to fit him.  Size XL!  AND it was loose!  Okay, not loose like it looked like he was swimming but it actually fit him comfortably.  Amazing.  His stomach is still loaded with visceral fat.  That sounds so gross.  He just looks like he has a beer gut with no beer in the fridge as an excuse.  I really need photos.     

So breakdown:
Starting weight: 289
Week 1: 0lb loss= 289
Week 2: 10lb loss= 279
Week 3: 2lb loss= 277
Week 4: coming soon.

Stay tuned!  I promise some embarassing photos.  Since they aren't of me. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

In His Shoes

Quite literally.  My oldest turned 10 on July 10th (pictures to come; if you know me, you know they'll be late as usual).  Golden birthday, yay!  I wasn't allowed to buy him too many presents and I was bummed, but it was probably for the best- kid can't keep his room cleaned to save his life.  He blames it on his siblings but I told him we could make the attic a bedroom just for him...
Anyway, the other night we were hanging out with family and I was sitting beside him.  I looked down at our feet side-by-side, mine bare and his in shoes.  I noticed that they were practically the same size so I asked him to take off his shoe so I could try it on.  

Then I remembered something.  My son's feet STINK.  Something awful.  Anyone know good solutions?  It is seriously rank.  Stinks up his whole room.  (he'd give me his mommy stop look if he knew I was publishing this for the world.)  It's amazing because as far as 10 year old kids go, he smells good.  Even when he hasn't showered for a few days during a stinkin' hot summer he doesn't smell bad, but GAWD those feet!  I'm not really sure how to treat it. 

So he gives me his shoes (I feign dying) and guess what?  They fit!  I can wear my child's shoes.  I wondered years ago when the day would come.  His feet are actually pretty small for a 10 year old, I think.  He's in a 3.5.  I can wear a boy's 3.5.  Before kids I could have fit into his shoes sooner.  I used to wear a 7.5 or 8 but now I'm in anywhere from an 8-9 depending on the brand and type of shoe.   

Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Foundary: Todays Awesome Deals from Coco Company and More

Daily deal site The Foundary is offering some steals from Coco Company today (ends in 2 days).  24 inch storage baskets for $30 (regularly priced at $75). 15 inch willow 4-section baskets (I'm picturing a cool diy craft creating a hot air balloon in a play room, regularly priced at $80) for only $35.  Coco Company has some great wicker, wire and other rustic products and they are priced so low right now on The Foundary.  I'm totally into the willow mahogany chest that is normally $249 and is priced at $115! 

In addition to the drool-worthy stuff above, The Foundary is having sales on modern furniture, yoga gear, linens, kids play tents, luggage, office furniture (GORGEOUS secretaries and armoires from Office Classics) and more, all ending soon.   

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Zulily Events: Baby Slings Starting at $19.99!

Zulily is, as usual, having some fantastic deals. 
Slinglings, a parent-owned company has peanut shell-style slings that are starting at only $19.99.  If you have ever shopped for baby slings you know they are very pricey.  The most expensive are only $32.99 which is still a great deal.  These are regularly priced at $45.  These slings have some adorable fabrics like the Fireworks Sling, Leopard Sling and the Pop Art Jade.  They have plain colors too.  I so badly wish that this deal would have been available when I was shopping for one.  I ended up getting a good second-hand deals on a ring sling and peanut shell while I was pregnant with my 3rd child but you usually can't get them new at this price.

Hurry- this event ends on July 30, 2011! 

The Weavers on a Diet!

Well, Jason is anyway!  I'll get into in eventually.  Unfortunately for me his grandparents didn't open the pool this year so I'm not getting in any swimming and who wants to actually exercise outside when it's hot? 
About 3 weeks ago hubby decided that he needed to lose weight.  Duh...  His way of losing weight is unique to him and fight as I might, he won't actually eat well.  He is more of an exercise and Atkin's diet kind of guy (ummm, didn't that guy have a heart attack from all that meat?).  But at least he's into the working out part- lots of cardio and some weights.  And he is eating lots of salads.  But diet soda?  How early does this guy want to die?  I'm not a fan of fad diets, frozen "healthy" entrees and anything with the words "low fat" or "sugar-free" send me in a panic run.  When someone says they want to lose weight with a combo of diet and exercise I'm a one-way thinker.  Fresh foods (except rice- I'm all about rice...and a little whole grain pasta) and exercise.  Unfortunately fresh=half our paycheck at least so diving into a healthy lifestyle isn't exactly an option if we want to have a home.  Fortunately he's trying to kill himself with fat so I don't have to worry as much that we will lose our home to fresh blueberries.  
On that note, I so wish I could keep some plants alive.  That our soil was healthy enough to grow some kickin' fruits and veggies.  That we had a yard big enough for 1 apple tree.  Container gardens all the way, right?  But they cost SO much.  And you have to BUY dirt.  Anyone have a composter they want to give me?  That would work.  

So, I'm thinking no one came here to read about my wanting a composter:    

(this one would be nice)

Or hear about my wishes for a nice garden. 

You're here for the dirt, right?  How much does he weigh??? 

When Jason and I met he was probably around 180.  5'10".  Very muscular.  When he hit 220 a few years back it was like, wow- you need to lose some weight.  He yo-yo'ed a bit, dieted here and there, worked out some, gained some.  Until he hit rock-bottom.  Or I'm thinking more like Death's door.  I urged him to try to eat a little better.  Subsisting on soda, McDonald's, soda, Arby's, SODA, Burger King was just not a good idea anymore.  I begged him to just step on the dang scale and see the damage, because there was DAMAGE.  I tried scare-tactics.  "Darling, you are going to die from a heart attack at 4am and I won't be able to drag your fat booty to the front door.  You'll certainly break the cart thing that the ambulance guys bring in while 4 men are struggling to get you down the stairs.".  Something like that. 
Finally...finally he watched too much tv and decided he wanted some As Seen on Tv workout dvds.  They seem to be really popular and people like the results.  The cost- too much.  Anyone wanna give us their copy of whatever workout dvds these are when they are done? *Oh oh, I know what it's called.  It's P90X.  I keep hearing people talking about it and it's always positive.  So want a REAL challenge?  This is your guy!

And then FINALLY, a few weeks ago, he stepped onto the scale.  Which read:
289Two hundred and eighty-nine pounds.  OMG.  I did lose the bet.  I was sure he topped 300.  But ugh! 

So he signed up and joined his building's gym.  $30 a month.  That we don't have.  But it's for his health so I'm willing to sacrifice money we don't have to save his life.  But once he gets going he totally needs to join Planet Fitness for $10 a month.  Or someone can sponsor a family membership to some rockin' gym with a pool so that they can document our family's goal to a better lifestyle.  Hmmm...sounds good, right?!!  Any takers?  :) 

We did talk about taking pictures and documenting.  We took 1 picture but the lighting was all wrong and haven't done it since.  It's been...I think 3 weeks since he started working out.  He is down to 279 now- not too shabby.  It's a big step in the right direction and I hope we can share this journey with anyone reading!  Soon...maybe...I'll join him.  But no pictures of me. 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Zoobles Mania

I never bought a Zoobles.  They seemed silly to me, this ball that pops open into a thing that does nothing.  Kind of like a Bakugan.  What's the point? 

Well, my kids don't seem to agree (except Zachary.  Bakugans are better).   Somehow my 6 year old daughter Amara ended up with one and it became one of the most coveted things in the house.  3 year old Jonas wanted that thing so bad.  Then 1 year old Henry discovered it.  He calls them "pop" and when he wants it to open into the creature he says "hep pop" (help pop).  Amara just aquired another one and it has all 3 of the younger kids buzzing with want and need.  Fights.  Cries.  They all NEED these things, these Zoobles.  They don't forget about them either.  There are times when they take a break from wanting them but the want always returns.  It could be an hour, a day or even a week but inevitably they fight for the Zoobles again and again.  

I'm not sure I could bring myself to spend $6-9 on one ball-creature called a Zooble.  My kids clearly are in love with them but $6.  For a little thing.  Anyone have any they want to give away?  Even with the love I'm not totally sold on the idea of these things rolling around the house.  Maybe I can find a killer deal on them sometime and then save them for Christmas or something.  

What crazy toys do your kids love?       

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What a Difference a Year Makes

I shared most of these pictures before but it's better seeing them all in one place to see how they grow!  Henry's first year, month-by-month (plus a few in-between):

First Photo: March 30 2010

2 weeks old.  4/14/2010

1 month 4/30/2010

2 months 5/30/2010.  Already loves being outside.

2.5 months.  Finger-sucking for comfort but that didn't last long.

3 months June 30, 2010.  Bring on the chubs!

4 months.

5 months August 30, 2010

5.5 months.

6 months Sept. 30, 2010.  Loves his big brother so much!

6.5 months.  Loves standing!

10/30/10 7 months.

7.5 months.  I promise I'm not eating them, I'm just coloring!

8 months 11/30/2010.  He wouldn't stay still for pictures.

This was what the rest of 8 months looked like!

9 months

10 months January 30, 2011.  Mega hair growth spurt!!

11.5 months (11 months, end of February, the camera was missing).

March 30, 2011- ONE YEAR!!! 

Wiggly crying baby to a walking, talking menace!  This is one of my absolute favorite age groups.  I can't get enough of it! 

Friday, July 8, 2011

St. Patty's Day Fun

I know, I know...It's JULY, Alex!  But I'm on the right computer at the right time so I have some pictures from our local Saint Patrick's Day Parade to share.  The York St. Patrick's Day Parade (York, PA) was a fun day out for the family and we found the perfect location at the old...court house, I think.  The kids got to see things from way up high and they were able to run off some energy.   

Regular-sized men in itty-bitty cars

BIG Doggy

Fun Dancers!

Martin's: Best Chips Ever

Adorable dancers

Classic Cars come to York every year. 

Fun times, lots of money for local businesses but sure does crowd the roads in my neighborhood!

The End!

The New Girl

Well, after seeing the commercial's for Fox's show The New Girl (coming Fall 2011) over and over and over again I'm hooked.  I want to see it!  I'm a So You Think You Can Dance Addict and it seems that during every commercial break there is a promotion for The New Girl (Zooey Deschanel). 
I guess their marketing ploy worked- show someone enough of something, it becomes familiar and you want to keep watching.  It looks funny enough and I'm always amused by the characters Zooey Deschanel plays in movies so this might be good.  Hopefully they aren't ruining it by only showing the good points.  I hate it when I see a movie preview and they show you every good part and the rest of the movie ends up being garbage. 

The majority of my must-see shows are on Fox.  Hopefully they aren't bumping any of my favorites for this one!  I'm also looking forward to the return of Bones and House, especially after their killer season finales.  Booth and Bones hook up?!!?  House runs his car through Lisa Cuddy's house?!?  I can't wait to see what's in store for those shows. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Happy 1st Birthday Henry!

Whoa...a little late here, considering said Henry is now 15 months old!  
Better late than never?  

Henry's first outfit in the hospital- a newborn sleeper that fit his 9lb 7.9oz body for a whopping week.
 Here's what not-so-baby Henry has been up to:

*New words in April:
Zzzzac (big brother Zach)
Maa (big sis Mara)
Juju (Jonas is his Jojo) 
No, Dritch (in combination, when he didn't want food, he wanted a drink)

*New actions in April:
Blowing kisses
understands burping (and humor in general)- during a conversation between daddy and Zach they were mentioning the word and Henry fake-burped and burst into laughter.
Went down the slide by himself- LOVED it. 

The feeling of different textures on his feet, like grass and concrete. 
Climbing.  Everything.
Watermelon, grapes, strawberries

Dancing, especially to the ABC song, Ke$ha's Blow, Britney Spears (one of her new songs on the radio).  I have a pre-teen that loves that garbage...ugh.

Grew a little taller but didn't gain any weight between 9-12 months.  But he's still a big boy.  Like I promised, there was no 1 year haircut- I must preserve the gorgeous hair!! 

March 30th: Happy first birthday to Henry.  He had plenty of fun and cake at a few laid back parties.  His first party was at the skating rink.  There was a school function there so we partied with a few friends and an adorable cake made by my friend (of course those photos are on the wrong, aka, uncharged laptop) so I'll share those later.  We didn't skate that night but just a few weeks later we gave it a shot and he loved it.  1 year old on skates?  Crazy, right?  Not to him!  He gleefully slipped and slided while death-gripping my hands.  Any attempts to stop resulted in major tears.   

#1 Dude! 
Did you know that typically, 1 year old shirts are only in size 12m?  This shirt didn't last long!

April 3rd: Family birthday party at Grandma and Grandpa's house.  What would a party be without Weebles for a Wobbly Weaver? 

I made the cake this time, one for him to destroy eat and one for the rest of us.

At that point, my ONE YEAR OLD Sony camera decided to crap out, again (on cake 2).  Disappointed Sony...SMH.  The shutter works when it wants, zoom works when it wants and it results in very blurry pictures when they shouldn't be.  My last Sony lasted over 7 years- that's quality.  I don't know what kind of junk cameras they've been creating ever since.   

ANYWAY.  Henry was a very dainty cake eater.  But in keeping with his messy ways, he delicately stuck his whole face and hands in the cake. 

All clean!

Stay tuned for more birthday fun and milestones!