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Friday, November 30, 2007

He's home and I did it!

Matt came home this afternoon. There has been much happiness in the house. Zachariah was so thrilled to have his daddy home. Of course I was excited to see my love again. And the dog, he needed his moment of attention too.

Not only did he come home, but my dear husband came bearing gifts. He brought me Sees chocolates, peanut brittle, and peppermint lotion. And he brought Zachariah a set of 3 little trucks. He couldn't have brought more perfect gifts. I'm ashamed to say I've already eaten about 3 pieces of chocolate.

Today is the last day of NaBloPoMo. YEAH! I did it! I don't know yet if I'll keep up with it every single day. I will try to keep posting often, but I won't worry about missing a day when I'm busy of have nothing to say. Still, it's over and I did it!

Thursday, November 29, 2007


Today was a nice day. In the keeping-us-busy-to-keep-our-minds-off-Matt-being-gone theme, we went shopping with my mom and grandma. It was fun. Zachariah was really good the whole time. He didn't want to let my mom (who he affectionately refers to as "Maw Bahb") out of his sight. And every time we got in our car to go to the next shopping destination, he cried. I think he enjoyed seeing someone else...especially since Matt is away. And the good news is that Matt will be finished early tomorrow, so Zachariah will get to see him before he goes to bed. YEAH! Anyway, here are a few fun photos from our day.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

2 more days

After today there are only 2 days left of NaBloPoMo. I'm enjoying it. I usually try to post every day, but normally I don't fret if I miss a day. I think I will just go back to that after this month. I will try to post every day, but not a big deal if I can't.

More importantly there are only 2 days left until Matt comes back home! Only 2 more days as a single mother. Thank God! I have enjoyed this time alone with my son, though. We've done a few more fun things that normal. We've gotten out of the house more than normal, just to keep our minds occupied (and from getting on each others nerves). So far it has worked pretty well. By late afternoon and on until bedtime, Zachariah asks about Daddy a lot. I keep telling him that Daddy is away working. He's in Columbus, can you say Columbus? He usually tries to say it, then nods his little head and seems satisfied by that answer.

Today we got some of our Christmas decorations up. I need to put up one more nail now that we have 3 stockings to hang. I will do another post about that's a good story. For now good night. I miss my sweetie pie, but he'll be home in 2 short days.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Christmas decorations

I haven't begun to decorate for Christmas yet, but it's in the front of my mind. I usually start as soon after Thanksgiving as I can.

Last year I remember putting the tree up in the evening after Zachariah went to bed. He was almost 9 months old then and he was starting to crawl and cruise. He did really well staying away from the tree. I also made sure to not have any ornaments on the bottom 6 inches or so of the tree.

This year I'm thinking Zachariah will like helping me decorate. We helped my mom put up some of her Christmas decorations while we were there over the weekend. He really like "hanging" the ornaments, so I will let him do that with our tree too. You could definitely tell where he put them, because he would clump them all together in the front. But it was really cute that he loved helping, so we just left them there.

I did ask Matt to get my boxes out of the garage before he left. I would like to really clean the living room before I get everything out, though. I usually rearrange the furniture, but I can't think of a good way to put things this year. I will probably just move the couch a little and see if that give me enough room. So far I have dusted EVERYTHING in this room. Tomorrow morning I plan to vacuum the floors, under furniture, and baseboards. And I should probably wash the big picture window too. Then I'll feel ready to get everything out.

I don't go all crazy for Christmas, but it is the only holiday I decorate my house for. I put up an artificial tree, some lights and ornaments to complete it. Then I have some greenery with lights that I put on the piano. And I have several candle holders, a nativity set, and a few other little knick-knacks that I set on the tables, piano, and other places like that. That's pretty much it. I had some Christmas towels I put in the kitchen too. But it's fun to do something new to the house every year. I like getting things out.

Two years we put white icicle lights up on the front of the house, but it's been a while since we've done that. Matt told me that he'd like to get some big colored bulbs to line the front of the house next year. That will be fun. I've always been after him to help decorate, but he isn't usually interested.

Do you like to decorate for Christmas? What is your favorite part? And what types of things do you do? Does your family help or does it mostly fall on you?

Monday, November 26, 2007

Care Package

Matt left today. He's going away for a week of training for work. We will miss him. Besides just missing him being here, I'll miss him being able to help with Zachariah. I'm not looking forward to this single parent gig. But we will make it. I'll be able to talk to him on the phone a few times at least.

Before he left he made up this great "care package" for us. It was so sweet. There were snacks for me, Zachariah, and Chip in there. I know he'll miss us too.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Mad Driving Skillz

How many things can you do while you drive? Talk on a cell phone? Apply makeup? Grab a lost toy/pacifier? Eat? Talk? How about just driving? Is that too much to ask?

This morning on my way to church I say a wonderful driver. He was driving an old beat up truck. He had the window all the way down (it was 27 degrees outside). He was smoking a cigarette AND brushing his teeth. Doesn't that defeat the purpose of brushing your teeth anyway? Then he spits out the open window. When did our cars become our bathrooms?

One day on his way to work Matt saw a woman multi-tasking. She was "driving", eating - A BOWL OF CEREAL WITH MILK, and applying make-up while stopped that the light. Yikes! And we wonder why our insurance prices are so high. I think it's because people like this cause accidents every day.

OK, I think I'm done complaining now. So, what's the craziest thing you or another driver you saw ever did while driving?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Little Piggie

We headed up to my parents' house Wednesday evening. We just got home late this afternoon. I am EXHAUSTED! But we had a great time. We enjoyed Thanksgiving Day, complete with two big meals. We loved seeing all our family that we see only twice a year or so. And it was great staying with my parents. We all get along great, and Zachariah loved spending so much time with "pa pa" and "maw bahb" (Grandpa & Grandma Barb). Plus, I was thrilled that my sister and her husband ended up staying the whole weekend with us too. They live nearby (about 1/2 hour drive), but they were enjoying our company. Rachel even had to work Friday and Saturday morning, but she just went to work while we did other things and we saw her in the afternoon/evening.

Grandpa & Grandma gave Zachariah this cheap little piggie bank Wednesday night to play with. It's something one of them got at work for a promotional thing. He thought it was pretty neat. We only had to show him once how to put money in it. Then he was off. Friday night after dinner Zachariah decided to feed his piggie. He went around asking everyone for "more" money. When he realized that they were reaching into their pockets to find this money. So he tried cutting out the middle man and getting into everyone's pockets himself. It was so funny. Then he'd go ask someone else for money. He did quite well getting his piggie fund started. (I'm not sure what he's saving for yet...maybe a rainy day.)

Friday, November 23, 2007


I don't have time for a long message tonight. Zachariah is sleeping in the den with the computer, so I'm typing this short message before he lays down.

Hope you all had fun on Black Friday. We got a few good deals, spent time with family, and we're watching movies tonight. Enjoy! What was your Friday like? Shopping? Decorating? Eating left-overs?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Turkey Day

The turkey was carved, the ham was sliced, the stuffing was moist, the potatoes were mashed, the bread was broken, and the pie was sweet. We did this twice today! I feel like a stuffed turkey now. But it was great to see our families. Now we'll do a tiny bit of shopping tomorrow then meet my father-in-law for a post-Thanksgiving breakfast (tradition).

Today on the way to my grandmother's house I noticed the cars on the road. They all seemed to be a little more lazy and relaxed about getting to their destination. While at a stop light, I looked at all the cars around us. Each one was full of families. It just seemed so ideal and peaceful. Families spend this day together, and I'm so glad we enjoyed ours with our families.


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Giving Thanks

Last weekend while we were at my parents' church (the church I grew up in), I heard a great sermon about being thankful from the pastor. He didn't talk about the traditional Thanksgiving stuff. He spoke about how thankfulness is about relationships and not things. It went into a discussion about what are things without people in our lives. It was very neat.

Of course I am thankful for the usual things, my family, my husband, my son, etc. But I am really thankful that I have two loving parents who didn't always give me everything I wanted...but they've always loved me MORE than I needed. I'm thankful for two caring sisters in my life. I'm thankful that God provided for me a perfect (for me) husband that can put up with all my silly ways (like waiting for me to finish dishes before we left the house today, when he just wanted to get going already).

I'm very thankful for my son. I prayed for him for over a year before he was even conceived. I prayed that God would bless me with a child who would grow up to serve Him. I knew God had a plan for my family. I knew that if I wasn't meant to had children He could take that burning desire in my heart for one away. I prayed daily, and every day it got harder. I finally came to a peace about it. I knew God's plan was better than mine. And before I ever expected, I found out I was pregnant. Now I see this beautiful little boy every day. And I'm thankful, very thankful to be a mother. I'm very thankful Matt is his father. And I'm thankful to God for my wonderful family.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Bonus baby name discussion

OK, so I thought about some other baby name things that I'd like to discuss. I'm going to continue this topic.

Do you think the first child's name sets the precedent for future baby naming? I worry that since I picked such a strong boys' name, a Biblical boys' name, that I'll be expected to stick with that. It's possible that I'd chose another boy's name from the Bible. But I'm more unlikely to chose a Biblical girl's name. I lean more toward trendy-sounding names for girls especially. I don't know why. So, did the name Zachariah restrict me for all future names?

Also, I wanted to tell you the girl names Matt and I like in case we ever have twin girls. Since there are twins in both sides of our families it is always a possibility, but mostly we just joke about it. It would be Laila and Anya. What do you think? Do those work together?

That's all I had to add for now. Just wanted to get those things out there before I forgot about them.

The boy names

Sorry that I didn't finish this post last night. I was exhausted. I'm not sure why. Matt and I both went to bed by 9:30PM. And I slept soundly all night long. I feel really rested today, though, so I'm glad. I don't usually go to bed early, and it felt good.

So, here are some of the boys names we threw around before our son was born (some of these may or may not be considered for future boys).

One of the first names we both fell in love with was Jamin. But after discussing it briefly with our parents, we were concerned that people might mispronounce it. So we decided it would be spelled Jaymin if we used it. Matt was set on this name for a long time, and it gradually grew on me. In the end I loved it, but I wanted to use the original spelling - Jamin. I liked that it was easy to say/pronounce, but it wasn't very common. It had slight appeal because it was in the Bible (hidden in there though).

Matt fell in love with the name Ryan somewhere along the line. I was OK with it, but it was never really a serious contender for me. I felt like it was too common.

We decided somewhere in here that we would for sure use Matthew for the middle name. And it seemed to fit all our possibilities. Jaymin Matthew, Ryan Matthew, etc.

Some other names I like(d) but we didn't really consider...mostly because Matt didn't like them. *Josiah (I've always loved that, but for some reason Matt doesn't like it at all. I tried over and over to convince him.)
*Hayden (He didn't like. Now I would not consider it again. Too many girls with the name. I have a thing about boy names being used for girls or vice versa. I want people to look at my son's name and KNOW it's a boy or look at a girl's name and know it's a girl.)
*Graham (I loved this, but Matt didn't like it because of graham crackers. :( Then a boy was born at our church with this name. It suits him well, but I didn't want to use it them because they would be close in age and have two of that name.)
*Levi (I don't remember why we didn't consider this more. I won't use it now, because my cousin just had a baby and used this name. Can you tell I try to steer away from names other people in my life use?)

I know that I had a whole list of names for possibilities, but I don't remember any more. I might still have the list, but it's probably buried in with other baby things. If I ever find them I'll come back and edit this post.

Matt came across the name Zachariah in a baby name book as well. He instantly loved it. This was probably in the 7th or 8th month of my pregnancy. He came to me and said "What about Zachariah?". At first I though "Ehh, it's OK." I did have Zachary on my list, but I was leaning away from it because it's too popular. Matt liked Zachariah better and liked that we could use the nickname Zac (and he wanted it spelled that way). I sort of blew the suggestion off at first. He was convinced about this name though. I kept turning back to Jamin/Jaymin. Then Matt would also try to push Ryan. A few weeks after he first suggested Zachariah I moved it towards the top of my list. Then I realized that it was a Bible name, only spelled Zechariah. I really liked that about it. I had some reservations about the length of the name though. Since we knew it would go with the middle name Matthew, it made the name really long. In the end that didn't matter.

I remember a few weeks before I had the baby Matt was telling his friends that he wanted the name to be Ryan Matthew. I would never say what my first pick was, but it was Jamin Matthew. I went into the delivery room ready to use my name choice. I still wanted to wait and see the baby first to be sure, but I was pretty sure it was for him. And I thought I could probably get my way.

My labor and delivery nurses kept asking if we had a name for the baby yet, and I kept telling them no. I fell in love with my son at first sight. He was such a big squishable baby. The doctor and all the nurses were shocked at his size. They couldn't wait to weigh him. While the nurses were cleaning him up, weighing him, and all the fun stuff, one of the shouted "Do we have a name for this little guy yet?" I looked at Matt and asked him what his choice was. I was just not sure. Then one of the nurses said "He needs a good, sturdy name for such a big, sturdy guy." With that statement, I knew she was right. And I knew that Jamin did not suit him. I looked at Matt, who looked back at me waiting for me to name this child, and I said he is a Zachariah. Matt smiled and agreed. So, we introduced Zachariah Matthew to our family. And we both insisted that his nickname be spelled Zac. Most of our family knows him by that, but I call him by his full name most of the time as do a few other people. And his full name is quite long, but it doesn't really matter. We get people that misunderstand and call him Zachery, but I just correct them. It's not a big deal. I'm sure he'll explain that all his life, but I always have to tell people how to spell my name and it doesn't hurt me. He is Zachariah Matthew S______, and I do not regret a thing about it.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Baby Naming

I love thinking/dreaming about baby names. That's just one more reason I love Swistle. Here she is having another baby name discussion. And I am glued to the comments. I love this. Just this weekend my cousin was asking me how I chose my son's name and what some other possibilities were. I thought maybe you'd be interested in hearing it. And I think I'm going to tell you some of the other names on my list. (I can't believe I'm doing that, because I'm usually pretty secretive about revealing baby names.) I may or may not use any of those names for future babies. Mostly I think I'll want a whole new list of names for next time. In fact I've already started a girls list, because I didn't get very far with girls' names last time.

I was very funny about sharing baby names. I think I will be for all future children too. I did NOT want to decide on the baby's name until I saw him, but I wanted to have a few names that we both loved on hand. I also was really hesitant to tell people about the names that I really loved. I didn't want people to judge the names and then "ruin" them for me. Matt didn't care about all that. I think he talked to more people about our possible names than I thought. But that was even more reason for me not to name the baby early. I asked Matt for names he liked and told him names I liked. Then we compiled a list, but I had the final say.

For me when I looked for baby names I wanted something people (maybe) knew, but something less common. I wasn't sure I wanted a name in the top 50/100 for the past few years, but I wasn't dead set against that. I seemed more likely to want a unique name for a girl (but nothing too crazy) and a classic name for a boy. Although that wasn't exactly the way I went.

OK, I had no ideas about boy names. At first we threw around Mark, David, John, Matthew, and sometimes Charles as first and/or middle names. These are all family names. My dad is Mark David (and I'd love to used some kind of his name for a future baby), Matt's dad is Charles Edward (Matt's name is Matthew Charles and his brother's name is Benjamin Edward, so they both got a part of their dad's name), and John was my grandfather's name (He passed away only 2 years before I got pregnant and I think this could still be a possibility for at least a middle name in the future.).

When we were looking at girl names (before finding out it was a boy at the 20 week ultrasound) we had one we both really liked. Since we didn't look much more that became our back up name, in case it was really a girl. It was Laila Nicole. Laila (spelled that way), Matt came across it in a baby name book and fell in love with it. He said to me "Laila, how do you feel about that?". I liked it. Then Nicole came in for a middle name, because a childhood friend of mine (named Nicole) died in a car accident when we were seniors in high school. For whatever reason I was thinking of her when I was pregnant, and I felt strongly about using her name for a girl. I don't know if I still would...maybe. We had a few other girl names that we liked, but we didn't get far so I didn't get a chance to keep changing my mind. There is one girl name that I mentioned before that I would consider again. If I had to name a baby girl right now, I know what her name would be. I don't think I want to share it though. It's different. I've never heard it before, but I saw it in a baby name book and loved it. It's not traditional, but it's more trendy sounding. But I don't think people will have too many problems saying it...just maybe spelling it.

OK, tomorrow more about how we settled on some boys names.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


I'm happy about my life right now. I'm just content today, I guess. Right now everyone, except me, is napping. Then we're leaving for a quick birthday dinner with our small group (assuming Zachariah is up in time). After that we have a community Thanksgiving service at church. Matt and I have to be there early for him to run projection and me for choir practice.

After church this morning we went out for pizza with a young couple with a baby. It was fun getting to know them a little better. Usually we just say hi in passing. Their little girl is 11 months younger than Zachariah. It's fun for me to watch her, because she's doing things that Zachariah was doing last year at this time. We're hoping we can hang out with them again. I think we can all learn a lot from each other and maybe there are some friendships forming.

This is a REALLY short week for us. Matt only works (and I tutor) Monday and Tuesday. Then we'll head up to my parents' house on Wednesday sometime. I'm hoping to clean and put a few things away that day as well, so I can get Christmas decorations out when we get home. I'm not sure when we'll be back home yet. We are planning to go out to eat with my parents and maybe Matt's parents on Wednesday evening. Sometimes we go out for breakfast with Matt's dad and maybe sister the day after Thanksgiving. Other than that and Thanksgiving Day, we don't have definite plans.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I think I'll write a separate post about why later this week. For now I'll just keep relaxing and finish up laundry. How about you? How are you spending your Sunday?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Parties, sisters, and football

That title sums up my day. Oh and some cousin loving. (I visited with my cousin who was in town for a short while this morning. It was nice to see her again.) We went to my parents' house today for our annual Ohio State vs. Michigan game. This is practically a state holiday. And it's a family tradition to gather for the game, cheer on our Buckeyes, and stuff ourselves with wonderful food. And in case you care, Ohio State won! Thank you, Beanie!

Look at the picture below of all that yummy food. I took close up photos, and I plan to post a few recipes for your enjoyment. We ate very well.

I hope that you had a fun Saturday like us. Enjoy!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The key to sleep

People, I figured it out. I know the magic answer to getting your child (well, maybe my child) to take a REALLY good nap. Zachariah has been sleeping now for 3 1/2 hours! Yes, I said that right. (And just as I typed it I hear him awake in his room. AHH!) Regardless, he did sleep 3 1/2 hours this afternoon.

Here's what I did. Got him up at normal time this morning and went about our typical routine. About 11:00 when we usually eat lunch, I got him ready and we headed out for lunch. I took him to a local pizza joint. We had their buffet. (I suppose this part will only work if your child is a good eater.) I filled him up with veggies, fruits, cheesy bread, potato wedges, pizza, and dessert bread/pizza. Have I mentioned before that this kid can eat? (I wonder how he's still so skinny. It does explain the height though. He has to expand somewhere.) Anyway, he ate a lot. We'd been there for an hour by the time he finished eating. At home lunch would take 1/2 hour, then he'd go down for a nap right after that.

So at this point we were running about an hour past his nap time (he's very flexible about naps). He was happy and well-fed, so I wanted to walk around the craft store for a bit. He was up for it. We were in there for a while, and I noticed he was getting really sleepy. When I asked him if he was ready for a nap, he would nod and then lean his head on his shoulder and pretend to sleep. In the car I kept making him talk to me (counting in Spanish) to stay awake. We were only a 10 minutes drive from home.

He stayed awake. Then he was ready for a nap. And he took a LONG one. See, I think that's the key to success. I don't think I can do this every day, though. It's worth remembering in case I need it.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Uno, dos, tres

Zachariah has started doing this funny thing lately. On Sunday he visited with my sister-in-law and mother-in-law. He had a great time, and they really enjoyed having him around. Well, my sil told me that they got Zachariah to repeat Spanish numbers 1-10, but when they tried to get him to say them in English he wouldn't do it. I thought that was funny and told them he will only repeat a few numbers. He'll say "one" (and hold up 1 finger), then he'll refuse to say any other numbers. However, when I say "uno" he says "uno, dos", then he'll repeat most of the other numbers after me. Sometimes he'll say no to certain ones, but he tried most of them. It's really funny. We have been doing this with him all week. Still he likes to say numbers in Spanish and not in English. And I think the English words would be easier for him to say, because he doesn't use "s" in words much. I am trying to get it on video, so you all can see how funny this kid of mine is. For now, you'll just have to picture it in your head and take my word for it. He is hilarious.

He "tried" to use the potty again today, but we got nothing. Ahh well.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Mommy's Big Boy

Zachariah has been gaining so much Independence lately that it never ceases to amaze me. He loves to say "helpa" when I ask him if he's a good helper. And he really is. He's starting to put toys away after playing. He will go get his shoes when it's time to leave. He'll get things off the shelves for lunch or dinner and bring them to me. He likes to put the empty laundry basket in the kitchen when I finish laundry.

Here's a cute story. This morning while Zachariah was playing I mentioned that we needed to go to the store today. "Go," he said, which means he wants to leave right now. Then he went and got his shoes. I told him he needed socks before we could put his shoes on. I said I'll go get your socks if you'll pick up these toys you just got out. Then I left to get the socks. When I came back every last toy was put where it belonged, and he was trying to put the lid on the toy container. I helped him close it, then he picked it up to put it on the shelf. There was no room for it, then he remembered that he'd brought it out of his room. So he waited by the door until I opened it, then he put the toy on the shelf and off he went. What? When did he learn to do all of that when asked once? I definitely praised him for all that.

I tell him "You're a good helper."
"Helpa!" he says with pride in his voice and a smile on his face.

My little boy is growing up, and I love him so much.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

No right time...a talk about poop and the potty

I don't know if it's time or not, but we've thought about potty training for quite a while now. My pediatrician has told me twice that I'm probably nuts for thinking about it, so I stopped bringing it up starting at his last appointment (18 month). My second (or whatever distance we are) cousin has their little boy, who is 3 weeks younger than Zachariah, already fully potty trained. I don't worry about that so much, because she was sitting him on a potty as an infant.

Zachariah has been telling us about his poops since before he was a year old. But I could never get him to sit on the potty for very long. He's been really interested in the potty and everything else for months. He just wasn't ready to take that step, so I didn't push it. I occasionally asked him if he wanted to go potty, mostly before bath time. He always refused. Then there was the time that he was about to poop in the bathtub. He'd been constipated for 2 days, and apparently he liked the warm water. He told me he was going potty, and I could tell because he was trying really hard. I picked him up and told him to go in the potty. He screamed and cried and jumped up off the potty. He wouldn't go, so I put him back in the tub. As soon as I did he pooped in there. That's been months ago.

Since then he's sat on the potty, briefly, a few times. But he's never done anything...until 2 weeks ago. He was doing the same thing in the tub, so I said let's do that in the potty. When I picked him up he didn't protest, and he sat on the potty and finished going. YEAH! We celebrated. He wasn't quite sure what to think of it, but he wasn't scared and he enjoyed the praises.

After that I've been asking him at each diaper change, before bed, before naps, etc., if he'd like to use the potty. He's never wanted to. Once in a while when he comes in the bathroom with me, he'll go sit on his potty chair with his clothes on. He's been doing this a lot lately. Then this morning he told me he wanted to go potty. I was so excited, I couldn't believe it. We got his pants and diaper off, and he sat there. And he sat and he sat. Nothing happened, but it was a miracle for him to sit still. I went and got books for him to look at. He took his time looking over the books, but he still never pottied. (His new-ish diaper was wet, so I suspect that he has just gone.) He sat there for at least 10-15 minutes. This was a huge milestone for us. First of all because he told me he wanted to go potty, then because he sat there for that long. He hardly sits that long for ANYTHING.

So, I'm thinking it's time to get more serious about potty training. I don't plan to go all out. (I think he's too young to push it.) But I want to start taking him to the potty first thing in the morning, after breakfast, after lunch, after nap, and other times throughout the day. If I can get him to sit there for a while each time, I think it will only be a matter of time before something happens (even if accidentally). Then I think he'll catch on. Whether we're ready or not, I think this is what needs to happen. Wish us luck.

Monday, November 12, 2007

A yummy snack

I'm sad that I don't have left-overs from this yummy snack. I took it as an appetizer for our Thanksgiving dinner on Saturday. There was only a tiny bit left, and I didn't feel like hauling it home. Plus my grandma asked if she could have a little of it. That's unusual, she's usually trying to pawn off her left-overs on us. I will definitely make this dip again though. It is a recipe from my pal, Bethany.

Bethany's Best Ever Dip

1 can Hormel chili - no beans
1 jar chunky salsa
1 large package Velveeta cheese
1 container sour cream

Mix all together and heat. It works great in a crock pot. Serve with tortilla chips. Yum. It makes a lot, so you'll have plenty to snack on.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Home. Tired. No naps. 2 days. Photos. Didn't load yesterday. Tomorrow = Monday. Catch up. Laundry. Yikes! Bye.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Is it Thanksgiving already?

It was for my family today. We had an early Thanksgiving dinner with my mom's family. It was nice to see everyone. I got to talk to my mom's cousin's wife (they are my age) who is having baby #2 next week. She is a sweetie, and their first son was born 3 weeks after Zachariah. The boys are still a bit young to play together. They are both only children (until next week, then Sam no longer will be the only child) and they're used to being home with mom. But they got along ok...except when I left (to see Mary's new place nearby). I guess Sam grabbed Zachariah by his hair. They said he had a handful on both sides, and Zac just stood there looking at him strangely until someone took Sam away. Ha! My kid is so laid back. The rest of the afternoon every time Sam came too close, Zachariah would hold out his hand (as if saying come no farther).

We stuffed ourselves with yummy turkey, all the trimings, and lots of desserts. My grandmother kept feeding Zachariah everything! The poor kid was almost overflowing. Plus we kept him up through nap time (there was nowhere for him to sleep there). And honestly he did pretty well. By the time we got back to my parents' house it was silly for him to take a nap. But he usually stays up later here, and he was in bed before 7:00. He also never ate supper. He threw up once, and then ate a few grapes. He wasn't hungry, and I wasn't thrilled about giving him more food. My grandma just kept him fed the whole time we were there. Cookies, fudge, pie, pie, and more pie. Besides he'd already eaten a good meal.

Anyway, we had a fun time. I hope you had a good Saturday.

Friday, November 9, 2007

My Best Friend(s)

Sara over at Suburban Oblivion gave us NaBloPoMo-ers some ideas to post about for her enjoyment. I think I'll take her up on that, because today I find myself at a loss of words.

This is all about how I met my best friend. This is a big hard for me to answer, because I can't really pinpoint a "best" friend. So, I will tell you about my favorite friends.

First and foremost, Matt is my best friend. We were friends first, then we started dating. But maybe I'll save that story for another time. This seems to be a popular blog topic with fellow bloggers. Matt is my lover, friend, and confidant. But there are some things that we just don't talk about. He's not a woman, so I think that's the clincher with certain topics.

I am very close to my mom (and dad really). I've know her all my life (duh), and we've always gotten along nicely. I was an easy teen. And I remember coming home and telling her all about my day every day after school from Elementary school through part of college (until I got married). If my parents asked me how my day had been, they really cared. And I always told them. I love that I had this relationship with my parents growing up. And I respect them even more now. I love seeing my mom with her one and only grandchild, my son. She's an awesome grandma, and Zachariah adores her. I have a new respect for my parents now that I have my own child. Plus I think I see that they did what was best for us, but that doesn't mean that's what's best for my life or child.

Then another of my best friends is my sister, Rachel. Rachel is 4 years younger than me. And it's great that we get along so well. We've always gotten along well, but our friendship really grew after I got married. Then once she was out of high school it got stronger, and stronger yet when I had a baby and she got married. I don't have to watch what I say to Rachel. She understands and she won't hold things against me. I also never had to fear judgement from her. And if she has a problem, she can just tell me. I love that our friendship has gotten stronger and stronger over the years. And I know once she has children, we'll have so many things that we can share.

So, these are my best friends. It's hard to define what a best friend is. But I have plenty of people who care about me greatly, and it's nice knowing I have people who truly understand me.

How about you? Who is/are your best friend(s)? How did you meet? And how do you define a best friend?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

A note to the handy man

Dear Plumber,

I don't know who you think you are. We are not pleased with the service we received from you.

First you tell us that you can some by at 11:00 Tuesday morning. No problem, we can wait until then. My husband kindly takes off from work at 10:45, so he'll be home to deal with you. By 1:00 we figured you weren't coming. It was nice of you to call, but 2 1/2 hours after our original appointment is a little late to say "oops, I think I missed your appointment". And we're glad that you agreed you'd still come by since we'd be home. Next time please tell us in advance that you're going to be late, so my husband doesn't waste his time off from work. And when you call again 4 hours after the appointment and say you'll be here in a little while, well maybe I can handle that.

But when you come, don't even look at the problem, then say you'll call in the morning before you come by, I get a little angry. Especially since this will be costing us an arm and a leg anyway. I see that you figured out what makes me really mad. Sure, go ahead and don't call us Wednesday morning. It's no inconvenience for me to stay home and wait for you. (I'll save my errands for another time.) But when the whole day goes by without you calling or stopping by, now I'm mad.

Don't worry, though, I honestly think you did us a favor. Since my sweet husband has already done quite a bit of plumbing work on this old house, he decided it wouldn't hurt to see what he could do. If all else fails, we'll call another plumbing company. And no fear, we won't bother you again. In the end we were able to fix the problem, and it saved us $325. So really I owe you a big Thank You.

A happy home owner,

Mommy Daisy

P.S. At this point don't bother calling or I might feel like telling you off. Thanks.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Yummy caramel dip

This may just be the simplest recipe ever.

World's Best Caramel Dip

1 stick butter
1 small can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup brown sugar

Put everything in a pan. It will melt together and warm. Once it seems hot and well mixed (and the butter is all melted) turn it off and let it sit a while. Serve warm with crisp apple slices. It also reheats nicely in the microwave.

This also stays warm well in a crock pot for get-togethers. I will serve it that way with whole apples, a cutting board, and an apple wedger setting beside it. It's always a hit.

Make it, enjoy!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Voting, organizing, recipes

Today I voted. I always vote, even when there isn't much on the today. For my personally it is so important to vote no matter how little the issues. I have never missed a vote since I turned 18 and could vote.

Also, related to yesterday's post...I am making progress on things here. That helps me feel more sane. Shauna mentioned making a list and going with that. Actually, I tend to be a list-maker, but it was starting to stress me out seeing all those things. It was easier for me to get overwhelmed with everything and then do nothing. So, my plan of attack now is just to pick one project that I see each day that needs done. Yesterday I cleaned the bathroom and painted the closet doors. Today I finished painting, organized/cleaned the laundry closet, and then I cleaned out my dresser in the bedroom. Tomorrow I may possibly reorganize the hall closet. But we'll see.

Hmm, there was one other thing that I wanted to blog about today. Oh yes, I remember. I think I'll save it for tomorrow. I am going to share my mom's awesome carmel dip recipe for apples. Yes, my mom rocks! She is a great cook, and I love her. So, come back tomorrow. Also, I have pictures. Mmm!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Pulling it together

Sometimes I feel really organized, and other times I feel like the most scatter-brained person alive. I've found that the scatter-brained thing has gotten worse since having a child. If something comes to mind, I have to write it down immediately or I will not remember it until it's too late.

This also affects things in my every day life. My house is in general order, but I feel like behind the scenes it's falling apart. And I'm so overwhelmed by the things I should do that I do nothing instead. Then I get angry with myself and beat myself up for doing nothing. I keep up with the daily tasks, but beyond that is where I feel myself falling apart.

With the holidays approaching, I want to get some things in order before gearing up completely for Christmas. Today I detail cleaned my whole bathroom. I also put up a new shower curtain that I've been holding onto for over a year. (That's another story for another time.) But I felt like there is no reason to be saving it, so why not enjoy it now. It felt so good. I have also finished painting the closet doors, so that's one more thing that will make sure a difference for me.

My goal for this month is to find one extra thing (like deep cleaning the bathroom, or sorting through a closet, or other details like that) each day. I think this will give me more peace of mind. And in the end I will feel better about my house and be able to relax and really enjoy the holidays.

Sunday, November 4, 2007


My son is testing my patience today. Let's hope that tomorrow (and the the of the week) is much better.

Good points:
* He went back to sleep for about 1/2 hour this morning, so the daylight savings time didn't bother our schedule too much.
* I got a 2+ hour nap this afternoon while Matt played with Zachariah.
* I went to the grocery store by myself tonight after Zac went to bed. That only leaves a few errands to run tomorrow with the kid.
* I bought 5 pints of candy bar ice cream (Bryer's Snickers, Twix, Reese's Cup, etc.). Yummo!
* My friend is hoping to come visit me this week!

Bad points:
* He needed an early nap (since he got up a little earlier), then didn't take another nap all day. So by bedtime he was exhausted.
* We couldn't go to church, because Zachariah has a cold (still). I won't leave him in the nursery with a cold (and I hope other mom's will keep their sick kids out too), but he can't sit quietly through the whole service.
* Zachariah had 4 time-outs today. (We just started doing this and it seems to help, but this is the most he's gotten.)
* He sure likes to push my buttons.
* Tomorrow is Monday. No one likes Mondays.

And so I won't dwell on all the bad, there is one final good. I stocked up on Halloween candy the day after Halloween. At least I have that to keep my company tomorrow!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Lovely Days

Before I go to bed tonight, I must blog. Must blog. Must not skip a day in November. That's been running through my head all day, but I don't know what to blog about.

Today was a lovely day. We had fun together as a family. Matt and I felt like we accomplished a lot around the house/outside. And I bought things! Yeah!
Zachariah let me sleep in this morning, but I thought it was too early and tried to get him to go back to sleep. He would not be conned into sleeping more. So, I gave in and let him come out to get breakfast. On the way to the kitchen I noticed the clock, it was 7:50AM. He DID let me sleep in, but it sure hadn't felt like it. I'm happy for the coming time change, and I don't like that they moved it back so far in the year. It is just too dark in the mornings here. At 8:00AM the sun was just starting to rise. I hate getting up in the dark. HATE. IT. But I do worry a little how the time change will affect Zachariah's waking, napping, sleeping times for the next few days. Usually he does OK and adjusts rather quickly.
Then this morning we went shopping. Kohl's was having a big sale today, plus we had a "15% off your entire purchase" coupon. You just can't beat that. I was in desperate need of some new pants (I only have 2 that I wear over and over; I do laundry often). So I got a pair of jeans and two new shirts. We also bought a little shirt and pants outfit for Zachariah, and Matt got a new pair of shoes. And we didn't spend that much at all, because we got some great deals. We also looked around at a few other stores, then went out for lunch.
By the time we got home, Zachariah was begging for a nap. (He usually gets one between 11:30 - 12:30, and at this point it was 2:00. Poor guy.) He went to sleep quickly, so Matt and I were able to get some things done. Matt changed a belt in his truck, I pulled plants out of the garden, Matt mowed the yard for one last time, we cleaned out the garage a bit, then I painted the laundry closet doors. It felt good to get some things done.
We spent the rest of the day inside watching football. And this evening, Matt and I watched a movie after Zachariah went to bed. We don't watch many movies, so it was a rare treat.
A boring, but lovely day. What did you do?

Friday, November 2, 2007

Too much to drink

You know you haven't had alcohol in a while, when 1 wine cooler, less than half drunk, makes you feel a bit woozie. HA!

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

I feel compelled to write about my youngest sister, Mary. I don't even know where to begin (or where to end for that matter). Mary has been calling me a lot lately. This after about 2 years of only talking to her maybe once a month. Granted for a while they didn't have a phone and now she has a cell phone with lots of minutes. But I still don't get it. I'm civil and nice to her on the phone and in person. But I don't always really feel that way about her. To be honest she drives me nuts. Matt knows that, and so does my other sister, Rachel. Rachel gets it. She feels the same way.

There are just so many things that are messed up with my relationship with Mary. And what really gets me sometimes is that she likes to act all buddy-buddy and best friends with me. That's not really the way it is. I don't tell Mary everything. In fact, I hardly tell her anything about my life. I don't, because I feel like I can't. Part of it is none of her business and there are just things that I don't want to share with her. The other part of it is that Mary doesn't listen very well. Most of the time she cares more about herself and her husband, and she completely neglects everyone else in her life. I hate that. I think that's my biggest problem with her.

Mary has been married for 2 years now. Her husband is....well, I don't know what to say about him without saying something I'll regret later. He can be nice, but most of the time he's not. He is more moody than most women. He's terribly clingy. He doesn't like my sister to have too many friends or dress too nice or look too pretty. He hates staying more than an hour at anything. This is horrible for family dinners. Mary tries to enjoy everyone's company and he goes to the other room to pout. She always goes to check on him and sometimes spends the whole time in there with him. She caters way too much to him. I mean he is her husband and all, but he usually asks way too much of her. She just goes along with it, and it drives the rest of us crazy. Long story short, he can be a real jerk and she puts up with him. I hate it. (And so does the rest of my family.)

Mary works very a factory. She has always been the bread-winner in their little family. Tony has worked for less than 1/3rd of their married life. When he's not working he's an unbelievable bear. Mary's job is wearing her down, and she's only in her early 20's. I don't want to imagine how she'll be in another 20, 30, 40 years of this. She just can't do it. Tony spends their money on stupid things and runs around with his friends all the time. (And that's all he does when he's not working.) He is currently working a decent job and has been at it for about 2 months. We're hoping that he finally keeps a job.

They just moved into a new rental house. She makes it sound pretty nice, and I hope that they can keep it and make payments. They have lived in 5 different places in the last 2 years. I don't know why. And one of those places was a tent in his friends' parents' yard. Yikes.

My parents do way too much for Mary and Tony. First they were paying for their cell phone, car insurance, and other small things. Then it was money for Tony to fix up a truck. And recently (about 5 months ago) my parents gave them their truck. I don't understand this. I'm not really jealous about it, but my parents never did anything like that for Rachel or I. They are very generous people, but I have never asked them to pay my bills. Goodness, I'm still paying my students loans, because I had to pay my way through college. Mary never even went to college.

The list goes on, but I'm having a hard time putting my thoughts into coherent sentences about this. The only person who truly understands how I feel about Mary is Rachel. And she feels the same way. We can talk about Mary and agree on everything. We don't understand why our parents keep helping her out again and again. Rachel and I (and our husbands) have worked very hard to get where we are. Maybe that's why our parents don't worry as much about us. I don't know. But being friendly to Mary can sometimes be very hard.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Ready, set, blog

Here it is the 1st of November. What it's already November 1? How can that be? I know, I know, I've been thinking the same thing too. And if you really want to freak out...Christmas is only 53 days, 5 hours, and 19 minutes away, but who's counting.

Anyway, November is a special month for me and some other bloggers. I have joined the ranks of NaBloPoMo. I'm excited and scared to see it come so quickly. This means I'll have to post at least once a day every day this month. I think I can do it! I'm up for the challenge.

I am afraid that I might get a little boring or run out of things to "talk" about. (If you know me personally, you're probably laughing hysterically right now. I'll give you a minute to pick yourself up off the floor.) I worry that I'll talk about myself too much. I worry that I'll go on and on about my son too much, because we all know that really I'm the only one who cares about all the funny little things he does.

But that's what having a blog is all about, right? RIGHT? It's my blog and I can be boring if I want to. You'll still stop by from time to time, right? RIGHT? So, I'm not promising glory, but I will do my best to post at least one new blog each day this month. Come by for a visit, and hey, if you get any great ideas for me to post about let me know.