Tuesday, May 29, 2007

My Scrapbook

I'm not sure this merits a weblog posting, but I'm experiencing a bit of trauma today.

For, oh, about six months, our fridge has been making a clunk sound. It is when the compressor cycles on and off, and at first it was a smallish alarming clunk. Then over time, it grew to a louder alarming clunk. Then the it started going "clunk-clunk". We chose to ignore it, because for a while the appliances all started going out at the same time. So, while I had the stove repair guy in, I asked for a little free diagnosis on the clunk. He was pretty sure it would be a bad compressor.

So I finally called up Sears, took up their offer on a service contract before they came out, hedging my bets it was the end of the line for this unit, and sure enough we got the replacement fridge because the repair was more than $500. (NOTE: If you have a major appliance repair, take Sears up on the service contract, it has got to be losing them tons of money, but hey, if it's out there....)

Anyway, to today. I have to get the fridge ready to go away, and that involves removing all the stuff off our current fridge. And I got to thinking, that since I never have time to put a scrapbook together, that fridge is the record of our lives. It hasn't been stripped and cleaned since we got it, 6+ years ago, and I felt like an archaeologist peeling the layers of spelling tests, photographs, funny magnets, school notices, and everything else. I won't tell you how grimey the whole thing was on the doors, I probably should have cleaned it at least bi-annually.

Anyway, judge for yourself: our beloved fridge, before and after. Ouch.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Emma and Max: First Day/Last Day

Emma: Last Day of the year, with Mrs. Holloway

Emma: First Day of 4th grade

Max: Last day of school

Max: First Day of 2nd Grade

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Last soccer game.

Max's Last Soccer Game of the Season

His coach, Joe, was the best we've ever had. He knew the game so well, and really had a positive attitude about teaching the kids. But more importantly he put sportsmanship first. Tonight we had a Wednesday night make up game, on the last school night of the year. Our whole team showed up, but only 5 of the other kids did. We were rotating kids in and out and their five (which dwindled to four) were absolutely worn out and losing 5-0 at the half.

Joe made it very clear how they must be feeling and though he always wanted our guys to do their best, that gloating and cheering wasn't the right thing. By the fourth quarter, he took them all aside and told them that it would be really nice to play for fun, and would any of the kids from our team like to help out the other team. Three of ours did and they all had a blast, it was very hard to tell which of our yellow jersey kids were playing for us or the other team, but the kids really didn't care, and no one took score anyway.

It really touched my heart to have my child coached that way.

Joey and Hugh on the last day of school.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Last Day

Joey and Hugh on the first day of school.
Last day photo will be posted as soon as I take it!

Today is the last day (barring unforseen circumstances!) that I will ever be the parent of a preschooler. Joey graduates from Good Shepherd School today, and after 7 years of volunteering, paying tuition, dropping off, picking up, and substitute teaching, I'm graduating too.

Every year, the final day is devoted to a chapel service where the kids sing their chapel songs, and it is always capped by the graduating Kindergarteners at the school singing a "thank you" song to the parents and teachers. For six years in a row, it has never failed to make me tear up, and that was when I knew that I'd be back in the fall. This year, all bets are off.

Any sadness is, of course, tempered with the knowledge that I have written my LAST TUITION PAYMENT UNTIL COLLEGE. So I'm not all sad.

Joey's best buddy, Hugh, is going to be in his Kindergarten class next year. He will be all set with our wonderful teacher/friend Mrs. Black. And next year the other two kids have awesome teachers. I've been looking forward to the 5th grade/3rd grade/Kinder year for years.

But I'm still taking the kleenix today.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


I'm right back on the treadmill. Right now, I'm worried about an upcoming art sale in Dallas this Friday and Saturday. I'm making some very cool laminated paper purses. I had received one as a gift and when I got it I thought 1) cool!, 2) I can copy this! It will be easy and cute. However, after disecting how it was constructed and learning through trial and error, I'm about to pull my hair out! Someday I will be able to crank them out in a time efficient way, but I'm not there now.

So all the details in getting myself, my good buddy Robbin (also in the sale) and 2/3 of my kids up to Dallas, and setting up my booth by 6pm are a little overwhelming.

I'm also worrying about what I'll do next year for a job. I wish I had a year of just catching my breath. All three kids will be in school, all day. My excuses are just about used up, and if we want to add on to the house, I'm going to have to pitch in. So I'm worrying about jobs, and options, and how many hours to work.

What I'm peaceful about is all the fun I've had with friends lately. I got taken out to lunch by my Godmother and another of my mom's friends yesterday, a birthday lunch. And I get to go to lunch next Monday with my girls from Fort Worth. Can't wait. Seeing my family this weekend in Fort Worth. Last Girl Scout meeting on Thursday, then I'm done until September, yippee. One more volunteer obligation at Bryker Woods next week and then that's all done.

Then it's summer. And I'm not going to work. I'm just going to relax and do fun stuff with the kids. I want to try to be in the moment. Not worrying about stuff... I can't wait.

And I'm very peaceful about next school year which will be here before I know it, just like always, and my kids with three awesome teachers next year. Two that we've had before and one of the two wonderful 5th grade teachers, either of which I'd be very happy to have for Emma.

So if I can make it through the weekend, it is all good.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

My Hands Are Bananas

Keep the monkeys away from your hands....

Saturday, May 05, 2007

forty two

A good old normal day for celebrating.

Max's soccer game was moved from Saturday to Sunday, so we had nothing on the schedule. I got to wake up whenever, stay in the PJs, and read the whole paper. David and Emma made waffles, later Emma and I went tooting around town, to the Farmer's Market then Central Market and the Stationary store. Then tonight, our favorite sitter came over so David and I could go out to eat. We went to Mrs. B's which has New Orleans/Homestyle cooking.

I got a homemade card from each of the kids, and Max's had each digit from one to forty two written out, a cake with 42 candles, 42 stars, 42 balloons, the equasion 4x10+2=42, just to drive home the point that he thinks I've reached a really big number.

It was a really fun day and I'm very content with my life these days.

I also want to send out a big birthday hug to my little sis. Happy Birthday Julie, you ultimately turned out to be my best birthday gift.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Happy me

I am the luckiest girl I know.

I asked my best buddies to meet me for a girls night out, so I could be thankful for the people I've had in my life this last year. And they surprised me with a surprise party.

I love them (even the ones who were absent!)

My life really gets better each year, and I am very fortunate to have such wonderful friends who make me enjoy my life and laugh so hard.

Chocolate Cake, Blue Bell and a cold Margarita.....yummy!

Queen Verde holds court

Thursday, May 03, 2007

A first, close to a sad last...

It has just occured to me that my life is about to take a big change.

I've been fully aware (for years) that next year will change my life. All three kids will finally be in public school, at the same school. I have been looking forward to this because they will all go for full days. I have been looking forward to this because this week I write MY LAST TUITION PAYMENT until college (!!!!!) And I look forward to it because my volunteer efforts, formerly spread between two schools will now firmly reside under one roof. Instead of being a mom who does a bit here and a bit there, without anyone knowing that I've overextended, it all happens under one roof. I see this as a way to cut back, and no one's the wiser.

But just this week, I realized the price for the change. I get to spend a significant amount of time with my little sidekick, Joey. I've been picking him up earlier than the other kids for years, and yesterday, like many, many other days that generally cause me frustration, he had a day off from school that did not coincide with the AISD schedule.

He and I kicked around the house in our PJs, and eventually got dressed to run some errands. By 1:45, while hopping from store to store, I realized we hadn't eaten lunch. The choices, in Joey's eyes, were McDonald's or McDonald's. I hate the smell of McD's and the way my skin feels instantly oily when I walk through the door. So I thought on my feet and offered an inventive alternative..... Chuck E Cheese's!

Let me state for the record, that I have NEVER advocated going there. I hate that place. I have attended so many birthday parties up there and it is just yukky. Very corporate-branded, very loud, very mediocre food, but very NOT McDonald's. But, I was pretty sure they had a salad bar, and you can't mess up pizza, and I am getting so sentimental about my special time with Joey coming to a close. I thought I'd be a great mom for that offer.

Of course, once I got inside, I saw three moms I know from Joey's pre-school (snooty West Austin school) and now they would think I hang out here all the time. Eventually they came over to talk to me, and the conversation started with me explaining I would never choose Chuck E's for lunch but was up North and out of time and options. They countered that they had never chosen to host a birthday party there, and of course they hate the place too. Joey pipes up and says that he hates it, because he only likes McDonald's. Oh well.

So in the end, he and I had a sliver of time to play a video game together. And we had a sketch done at the booth that takes photos and makes them look hand drawn. The lighting is always such that I look quite good in the final image. David says it is because the lighting doesn't show wrinkles. And I have a nice momento of one of my last days to play with Joey while the big kids are away.