Well, when it rains, it pours... literally sometimes. Luckily, today's fiasco had nothing to do with rain, but there was water pouring all over the bathroom and down the hall.
The toilet was plugged and when I used my (worthless) plunger to fix it, I tried flushing it again... bad idea. It wouldn't stop!! I was so distracted by the toilet itself than when I turned to stomp out of the bathroom, I slammed into the wall when I slipped on the water in the hallway.
I audibly growled as I stomped to my cell phone and called my neighbor to beg for her plunger. She graciously offered to bring their shop vac, too. Then I headed to the garage to fetch the mop.
Well, so much for THAT idea.
So, several area rugs and towels later, with the aid of the shop vac, it's safe to walk down the hallway again. I'm still mad at the toilet... scared to flush it again, although it did manage a complete flush the last time I threatened it. Ugh.
Here are just a few fun pictures I had to share... I love my kids!
Yesterday I zonked out on the couch watching "Meet the Robinson's" with the kids while Fred was running errands. When he got home he found all 3 of his girls asleep on the couch, Gregory sitting on me.
One of Leora's favorite things is my cell phone. She really hams up her "conversations", and occasionally manages to complete a call by accident.
"Do you mind?"
The kids happily helped Fred assemble my old computer desk... Leora looks ELATED!
Most mornings we find Charla stripped down to her diaper. She has a few PJ's that button so she can't pull them off. She woke up one morning with her whole night gown pulled over her head, stuck at her nose... you can see how happy she was about that.
Think they're related?
She's just being cute, but the angle is so bizarre :P
Fred had been playing on the floor with the kids and ended up falling asleep. When he woke up, Leora was lying right next to him, grinning. Luckily he just happened to have his camera in his pocket, so he snapped a picture. That's a face I could wake up to every day!
A friend of a friend has just started selling May Kay. My friend invited me to come to a Mary Kay party held at the "Mother Ship" this morning. I've been to several since I was a Beehive, but I'd never been to one not held in someone's home. It was quite the experience!
First of all, let me be fair and say Mary Kay DOES have great products... far out of my price range, but good nonetheless. The thing that I found amusing was the "pep talk sales pitch" approach they used. There were probably about 20 guests and maybe 5 consultants, with 2 "head honcho" types running the show (the ones who drive the infamous Pink Cadillacs).
The first half was pleasant.. all the "cleansing" and "moisturizing." The second half was more entertaining... the "beautifying" part. Apparently we were going for the "Glamor Look". The big thing the main lady was pushing was eyebrow enhancers. She had warned earlier that she would pick people to make demonstrations. I got to be the lucky first victim.
(the flash washed me out... it doesn't look too bad here)
I was perched on this high seat in front of everyone and she called attention to my "beautifully" shaped eyebrows, but pointed out they were blonde and hard to see. So she deftly "brought them out" (a.k.a. drew some) and then had me model, calling for applause and exclaiming that it had transformed my face!.. what was wrong with it before?
I guess she liked me (she probably thought my smirk was a sign of sincere excited interest, like most of the guests), so I was told to stay on the seat and she honored me by finishing my eye shadow herself. With each color application (3 colors total) she told everyone to observe, and I would steal a glance. And with each application it was more and more scary. The final touch she called "smoking" my eyes... I thought I looked more like one of those scary women mistaken for evil fiends.
I finally got to go sit by my friend and the girls she had introduced me to. Those ladies were worth all the clown make-up. We were our own little corner of military women and had lots of laughs. In the end I thought their make-up was much more subtle and beautifying than the monstrosity I had been morphed into.
Don't get me wrong, it was a lot of fun... but I think I enjoyed silently laughing at the approach more than anything. Phrases like, "I won't go to my mailbox without make-up!" or "use this and you'll age 17 days less faster per day".. what does THAT mean? I also didn't agree with the pressure for women to be always "made up"... I felt it was more like hiding than bringing out your best self. Not that I'm anti-make-up... I'm just pro-practical.
When I got home, Fred had pulled up an old Animaniacs episode on YouTube in honor of my trip. I got a good laugh... and he insisted I look lovely, even though I rolled my eyes... back to masacara and lip gloss tomorrow!
OK... it's cold. Today's high should get up to 9 degrees with a low of -6. It's funny, we've had people apologizing to us, saying this is the worst winter they've seen here; that usually IF it gets this cold it doesn't happen until February. Oh well, I think it's manageable.
Fred took the van to work, so when it came time to walk Charla down to play with her preschool friends, I realized I needed to improvise. They only live a couple hundreds yards up the street, but there was NO WAY I was going to attempt taking the stroller out in the snow!
So I bundled up my girls as much as I could, strapped Leora onto my back, and we trudged through the snow! It wouldn't have been too bad, except for the breeze! I was sure my ears were going to fall off- when I got home the weather site said it was 5 degrees! For my walk to pick Charla back up, a friend across the street is going to watch Leora... she never complained, but her little face was so icy and red I just couldn't bear to do it to her again today!
A couple days ago I decided Charla's hair needed a trim. Unfortunately she still tugs at it a lot, so it was really uneven in places.
I'm devoted to that children's hair salon, Cookie Cutters, for Charla's haircuts. The atmosphere is SO FUN and the staff is great and really knows what they're doing.
And the price is right- $12. That gets a great haircut while the kids watch a movie from their vast selection while sitting in these cute little Radio Flyer toy cars/planes, and they get a balloon and lolly pop when they're done.
If you come for their first hair cut, you get a certificate and they attach a lock of the child's hair to it! We haven't left dissatisfied yet!
(She looks like she's upset, but she was trying to smile with that pacifier in her mouth)
Charla was a little natural. She watched a Little Mermaid cartoon and was very cooperative.
When she was all done, she declared she wanted to use the potty before we left... not because she's such a practical 3-year old, but because the bathroom has it's own child-sized door!
This is gonna sound silly, but last Saturday we went on our first date since Fred surprised me at Thanksgiving! Fred had 2 weeks off for the holidays and to readjust to being home, but we spent it altogether as a family (which was great, although we agree we were more lazy than anything.. yay!).
Well, Fred remedied that. He arranged for friends of ours to watch the kids for several hours. He blindfolded me and then drove around for a while, hoping to confuse me.
Here's what happened when we pulled up...
YAY!! Texas Roadhouse! yummy...
haha... the disappointment in my voice was poorly disguised when I was convinced we were going to Subway and then Bob Evans for dinner. Then I pointed to another place I'm glad he didn't take me to. Or more like, HE'S glad he didn't take me to...
They had started building the Texas Roadhouse right after we moved here. It opened while Fred was gone, but I didn't want to go without him. Back in Tucson we LOVED going there with Fred's brothers and their families. It wouldn't be the same without another Olsen :)
Afterwards we drove out to that ritzy shopping plaza, The Greene. They still have the enormous Christmas tree and all the lights up. We grabbed dessert at the Cheesecake Factory. By the time we were done we were SO FULL I insisted we walk around a little before getting in the van.
It was breezy and really cold, but it was just so pleasant holding hands, meandering the sidewalks, passing by all the fancy shops and restaurants. I've become a firm believer in scarfs and wool coats! Earlier that day I happened to swing by Old Navy and that maternity coat I'd almost bought full price back in fall, was 75% off!! I couldn't resist.
So, the great wool coat paired with the beautiful scarf Fred's Aunt Sally gave me, made me actually realitively cozy! It was a great date :)
Well, it finally happened... no, Leora's tooth she's been teething STILL has not broken through. But a close second- it finally really snowed (by my standards)!
The girls loved watching it all day long, bickering over the best spot to watch it.
Fred came home for lunch (I love it). We teased the cat by taking her outside in the falling snow. You can deduct from the picture how she felt about that.
When Gregory came home from school he immediately asked if he could, "Go outside and make a snowball."
I had sudden flashbacks of myself as a kid begging to do things I deemed as delightful and being puzzled at my parents' hesitation: Playing in the waves at the beach, "You go ahead, I'll watch." Going to the pool every day.. Now I try to remember what was so fun about it. Peanut butter and butter sandwiches... hey butter was good with jam, peanut butter's also great with jam. Why not combine them??
Anyways, I laughed at myself for even briefly internally groaning at the thought of pulling on my winter gear to go get wet and cold. The delight on his face was too much to resist.
He had a blast! He felt it was his duty to wipe off all the toys back there.
Here is official documentation of his VERY first snowball in creation phase.
He wasn't a bad shot, either! Luckily he missed the camera- and hit me!
He actually rolled a little snowball down the hill to make this slightly larger one.
We'll see if it sticks around. With a little more, I think we can make a mini-snowman tomorrow.
Today marks 20 weeks of pregnancy... which I find ironic because you're not actually pregnant for the first 2 weeks from when they start counting. But who really cares about 2 measly weeks? Well, most women around 38 weeks gestation do, but I won't be there for, what, about another 10 years, right?
It is nice to know there are (hopefully) less weeks ahead of me than behind me for the rest of my pregnancy. This first trimester was surreal. Fred was gone for almost the whole thing. More strange was the absence of morning sickness. *I AM NOT COMPLAINING* It was just a little disconcerting, since I had varying degrees of it with my other pregnancies (I sound like a baby factory).
We had our big ultrasound on New Year's Eve day. Gregory's been excited about this baby, so we made sure it was ok, and brought him with us. We showed him a few sonograms on YouTube, to prep him... those alien shots weird ME out. When we got there he actually was quite interested... until he saw the screen saver on the computer across the room- it was of fighter jets. How could a fuzzy shadow of a boring baby possibly EVER compete with THAT??
(I love the cute little tummy pooching out)
We told the tech we don't want to know the baby's gender so she was good about telling us when not to look. Unfortunately, that meant we missed about 1/2 the ultrasound, which aggravated me. Still, she gave us a couple nice shots of the baby. Afterward we got the girls from our wonderful babysitter and treated the kids to Burger King.. well, more to the Burger King play area.
SO, with my ever expanding belly (for the record, she looked around thoroughly and confirmed there is only ONE baby in there... just for future reference as my pregnancy progresses and I am brave enough to post pictures of myself) we just resume life, with the exciting prospect of our last addition half way here!
They wouldn't let us film the sonogram itself. This is a video of Gregory watching wide-eyed, with his mouth wide open the whole time. It was dark in the room, but I think I'll try re-loading this because it doesn't look like the video processed at all.
I went through my mega- scrapbooking phase several years ago. I just don't have the time for it now, but I still have a vast collection of supplies for the obsession. I finally got to justify making the military move my stash with us by dusting it off for FHE last night.
Being our first Christmas away from home, I'm ACTUALLY making sure we get our thank you cards out this year. In the past we could say "thank you" right to our generous family.
I put Fred in charge of helping the kids with stamping while I cut out the parts of the card for the kids to decorate and then for me to assemble. It was actually really fun! Fred was a great sport and the kids really had a fun time "Stamping it up."
(Man, he's such a good lookin' kid)
Like what usually happens with scrapping, time went by fast, so we had to stop before all the cards were done. Gregory made me PROMISE he'll get to finish his after school today. I love watching creativity flow in my home!
The stomach flu has swept through our family this weekend. Luckily we went mostly in pairs, starting with the girls, then just Fred, ending with Gregory and I last night. So HOPEFULLY it'll stay away for a while...
Anyways, most people probably don't want to hear about us being sick, but you needed to know that so I could share what Gregory said this morning.
Life had pretty much fully returned to him (I wish I could have said the same), so I asked how he was feeling. He responded with,
"Well, the food in my tummy is mostly not killing me anymore."