Friday, August 31, 2007

The Best Feeling In the World

Was sitting at the table when little Elizabeth comes running up with a big kiss and hug and says "Mommy I love you as big as the house!" Doesn't get better than that! :) Happy Labor Day- will be offline until next week~ Until then~ Happy long weekend!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

They're Back and 4 little grub balls

Just as I put 4 little ones down for a nap (yes, even Elisha- he was up WAY too early!) they came... guess it was time to excavate the lot beside us -again for the 3rd time. I'm really hoping this attempt to fix the drain will be the last- the last attempts just ended up in being washed away after the rains. But, even with all of the noise, they ALL slept! Hooray for Mom!!! There really is something to be said for a bit of QUIET! Guess the threat that YOU WILL NOT go to the park with Daddy if you DO NOT sleep worked :) Just a little ammo pulled from Mommy's bag of goodies- I'm SO glad I didn't have to follow through with NOT allowing them to go- phew!
(Parenting tip~ don't make threats you won't follow through with- BOY have I learned the hard way on that one!)

And here is the result of playing all day with Daddy- 1 little grub ball out of 4- check out his feet :) Actually that's pretty mild for our little ones- usually the dirt is caked on- I've been told many times that dirt makes children grow- if so, our's should be at least adult-sized by now~

Bath time!!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Pretty mornings

Not a lot going on-- unless you consider new school schedules, back to fall routines, etc... :)
The weather's been beautiful~ this was the view from the schoolroom/office this morning~ sure beats those winter views- which won't be far off :( !

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Singing and an 89th birthday!

Week-end of celebration- Great Grandma was 89! Had a fun celebration at Grandma'a house- what a milestone~And here is Miss Lydia posing with one of Great Grandma's birthday cards~

And to add to all of the activities already going on~ Lydia has started voice lessons. She's ALWAYS singing around the house- and actually sounded pretty good to me. So- we figured we have her checked out, and sure enough she has a great ear and sings with perfect pitch- definitely DID NOT get any of that from her mother!! We'll see how the first month goes and where it takes her/us- maybe just a month poorer (ha ha) or the next step to the future Miss Lydia :)

Friday, August 24, 2007

Time.... or lack of

WoW! I feel like a broken record~ But seriously, WHERE does the time go? Even though I'm exhausted, I feel like it should be 10am this morning with the day still ahead of me to get everything accomplished. Wasn't a total waste- when you consider 5 loads of laundry done, errands run, house cleaned up, and a new school system started~ and I wouldn't trade any of it for a second. If it isn't a challenge, is it worth doing? Take even a massage- there's a challenge there in staying awake :) I know, time for bed :) Have a great weekend~
PS- you know me and flowers- these were from Mark and picked out by Elisha- what special guys I've got :)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Your Royal Highness has Spoken AGAIN

I called for Elizabeth to come into the room I was in today, and she has informed me she is NOT Elizabeth. She is Miss Peanut Princess today! (as for the 'peanut' - the only thing I can figure is she was munching on PapPap's dry roasted peanuts??? your guess is as good as mine) Who knows WHAT she'll be tomorrow- NEVER dull around here!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Another Busy Weekend

Once again it was another fun-filled weekend. Our yearly Pirate Game/Skyblast outing was fullfilled with perfect weather- just in time before the last 2 days of less-than-desirable conditions.
Not being baseball fans, we always say that we attend the game just to see the incredible fireworks, and experience beautiful PNC park- but this year the game was actually pretty exciting- the Pirates won 11-6. And that was after being down by 4 at the top the the first inning~ go Pirates- hey... they have to win at least one here and there :) (And Austin- by the way, the Steelers won another pre-season game the same evening- first game of the season in less than two weeks buddy -ha ha )The Gang Tony and Mom MOMMMMMMMM!!! I WILL NOT look any more :)

And naturally, what is a baseball game without seats in peanut heaven? Even up there the view is beautiful. I was hoping to have pictures of skyblast, but my camera died halfway through the evening. Not sure what's wrong-maybe sympathy for Carrie's camera problem :(

The main band for skyblast was the Povertyneck Hillbillies- those guys can wind up a crowd with some good 'ol fiddle playing- and the fireworks just keep getting better each year- we actually thought they would never end! They are shot off from the river, bridge, inside the field, and some buildings across the river- WOW! Go Zambelli's!

As for the rest of the weekend- rained out. Mark, his dad and the told oldest ones were supposed to go to a rc air 'fly-in'- No fun with solid rain, so it was a rainy, lazy day at home~ we're hoping the rain doesn't stop their plans to go boating again later in the week.

Have a great week- here' s to the SUN!!!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

She speaks again!

Little Elizabeth was running along the new cement driveway yesterday, tripped, and fell. Suffering from some TREMENDOUS boo boos (we're talking a very slightly scraped elbow here), she came inside and informed us all that "I'm NEVER going on that concrete again! They SHOULDN'T NOT NEVER make that because it hurts. I'm NOT riding my bike on it neither!!!" If only you all could see her little expressions- ... talk about milking it all night- she couldn't brush her teeth because her boo boo was hurting....

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Yummy Tomatoes and Homeschool Park Day

Can't believe fall is upon us ALREADY!! We had a great homeschool 'get-together' at the local park today- it's always fun to just play for awhile~ and forget about the laundry that needs to be ironed... dinner to be cooked... your MUCH more intense karate class tonight, where you feel like a kid going back to school yourself..... :)
Here's to a new year, new friends, cherished old friends, and of course, FUN-FILLED math drill sheets for Elisha- ha ha!!

Carrie- since you asked, the rest of this blog is for you... ok- and anyone else visiting :)

Our top-three favorite ways to use up tomatoes:

1. Basic tomato sandwiches with mayo, (or a yummy vegan avocado mayo-yum!) and sometimes a fried egg on top~

2. Cut up with basil, onion, and garlic, served over pasta or a 'raw' zucchini spaghetti~

And-- drum-roll please........

3. The TOP-SECRET (but since I love y'all I'll share) family salsa recipe:

Grandma's Salsa:

3 medium tomatoes-diced

7-8 scallions-chopped

can olives-chopped finely

small can of green chilies

3 T olive oil

1 1/2 t. red wine vinegar

1 t. garlic

Combine all, adjust seasonings to taste, let sit for a few hours and serve with chips, fresh pitas, or flax crackers~ YUM :)'

Bon Appetit!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Tomatoes!!!!! and Web Site Reminder

LOOK!!!! REAL tomatoes!!! From OUR garden!! The FIRST time in years!!! Can you tell I'm quite excited over this?? Especially since our tomatoes have some kind of blight, this is a very good thing :)

On to another topic-- Mark's website is coming along, with new additions daily~ check his 'children's games for kids' site out at:

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Picnic in the park

What do you do with 4 stir-crazy little ones that start bickering the moment they wake up? Take them to the park for a picnic~ (the popsicles were a treat upon return)
They do tend to get a little upset when they see Mom with camera in her hand- again! Mooooommmmmmm-----will you STOP taking pictures?? :)

Friday, August 10, 2007

From river boating to river tornado

Most of you who know me, know that I've got to have things done according to 'routine' and order (if there is such a thing with 4 little ones-haha). This week has been anything but. Elisha has had a week-long robotics camp at the Carnegie Science Center, so I was prepared for a bit of a schedule disruption, but the week has very far from typical. Wednesday we all had a great day of boating with our friend and his daughter and son. Elisha was even chauffeured to and from the science center by boat- that's pretty neat if you ask me. :)
They're ready to go!

Austin- this picture is JUST for YOU!!! It's your very own view of Heinz Field from the river- and hey Austin... it's a new season, a new coach, and you didn't place any mojo on the stadium for this season, so look out bud!! They even won their first pre-season game :) (Which really means didley, I know- but it's a sign- I just feel it)

While Jacob loved the boat, he REALLY disliked his lifejacket.

Our boat's faster than your boat :)

Pittsburgh does have a beautiful skyline- preferrably viewed without funnel clouds.
Don't let Mark fool you in this picture... That's more like it :)
DEFINITELY nap time!!! It's so neat to go everywhere via boat- this city is almost more accessible. The kids love the Station Square fountain- Those ducks just love little hand-outs thrown to them...hmmm, they kind of resemble my children. :)

When you're done, you're done :)

When we returned to the dock, there was a beautiful rainbow overhead, but my camera batteries died :(

Thanks for the great day Dom!!! Can't wait to do it again!

Now, after Wednesday, we were very glad we had our outing then, rather than Thursday. Taking Elisha into his camp in the morning, we stopped for breakfast. Coming out of the cafe, it was like night, and it felt like you could touch the clouds- never quite seen anything like that. Very strange, but didn't think anything of it- had to get Elisha into Pittsburgh. The heavens let loose, and you know the old saying...rained like cats and dogs. The weather man said it dumped 5 inches in 1 hour.

It cleared of a bit and the rest of the day was cloudy, very much like our boating day. Dropped off Elisha, and Lydia and I headed for an all-over Pittsburgh shopping day. East End, Strip District, then back to CSC so she could play. We had to park in a spot I made at the farthest place in the lot, so at 2:30pm we went out to the car to move it to the drop-off/pick-up zone. While moving the car I heard on the radio there was a tornado warning for Allegheny county- thinking they meant watch instead of warning I didn't think much of it because it really didn't look that bad outside- just a normal grey storm cloud- and I didn't even hear any thunder or see lighting. Lydia and I headed inside and within 5 minutes we heard glass shattering and looked outside to see all kinds of things flying by horizontally. Now most of you who know me, also know that storms aren't my thing. Surprisingly I did well, just got a little panicked because I didn't know where Elisha was- his camp classroom was on the third floor. So I headed up the ramps, not knowing we weren't allowed on them, just in time to look up and see another window being blown out- there's my claim to fame: I was there on the ramp when the CSC glass was shattered. Elisha was fine, and all of the teachers had the students in the concrete stairwells.

While I don't know if it was actually a tornado, and don't want to make it out to be more than it was, it was a bit strange/scary. We're just very thankful we weren't on the boat because it would have been docked on the river with Dom, his family, and Jacob/the girls waiting for Mark and I to get Elisha. No one would have known it was coming, and there would have been no where for them to go. As is stands, a section of wall was blown off the outside of the building, and windows were blown out/broken. The CSC is closed for 2 days while they survey the damage and decide when to reopen. Don't know when or if Elisha will get to go to his last day.

And there you have it - 2 days in the life of summer camp in Pittsburgh... like I said, there is never a dull moment here :)

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Coming soon...

Hey everyone-- been a CRAZY week- boating all day yesterday, tornado today- but that will all have to wait- I'm toooooooo sleepy to write any more--- stay tuned :) ..................

Monday, August 6, 2007

Take time to smell the roses~

I love frest-cut flowers, so thought I'd share a tip with those of you who do too~ the secret to cheap, fresh flowers~ ALDI's! If you have an Aldi's discount store near you, they usually have rose bouquets for $2.99- and they are the prettiest, most long-lasting I've seen. So husbands- there you go- head to Aldi's for the flowers that I KNOW you give to your wives so often :) ~just make sure you grab a box of fine chocolates to go with them -you might want to get the box of 'fine' chocolates elsewhere- ha ha :) Now how's that for a plug for Aldi's grocery markets??

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Elizabeth speaks again

Finding Elizabeth unusually sleepy last night, I confronted her and told her that if she would sleep during nap time, she would be more awake. And- if she would let Jacob sleep during nap time, he wouldn't be as cranky at night. Her reply: "well Mom, I HAVE to wake Japub (Elizabetheese for Jacob) up becuase he sleeps forever and if I don't wake him up, he'll not never get up." (Yes- I know I need to correct the double negatves there :) And her response for not sleeping herself: "Mom, I can't sleep at nap time because Japub keeps me up." And how DOES Jacob keep you up, if he's asleep? "Well Mom, he snores and I can't sleep!" The responses never end with her :)

Saturday, August 4, 2007

I've taught them well :)

We started the weekend off with a fun visit from Grandpa and Grandma yesterday~ Elisha did enjoy himself even though he was a bit upset he couldn't beat Mr. Tony at checkers. Tough learning lessons :)

This afternoon I found Elisha and Lydia playing in the water outside as PapPap was washing his truck. In a flash they ran by me, just STARVING and looking like drowned rats- then returned just as fast, dry as a bone. PapPap's taking us to lunch, they say. After PapPap came in the house I find out he thought I had sent them down to get lunch with him. Nope- he'd been played- I've trained them all too well :) And so goes the weekend... personally, I'm pulling for dinner out tonight....I may need some help from my little ones :)

Friday, August 3, 2007

Big Sister Training

Took the little ones shopping yesterday and discovered that little Jacob was calling continuously to his sisters "hey princess- here princess" while giving them one his toys he stashed away in the car. Now, this was not just to Lydia, but to both Lydia and Elizabeth, and it was one of his favorite toys- how's that for training your little brother into the ways of loyalty? Not sure this is a good thing.... maybe Jacob needs to spend some more time with big BROTHER! :)

Thursday, August 2, 2007

They're Back...

We awoke this morning to day 2 of city work. Elisha was just THRILLED- sooo excited that there was NO way any school was to be accomplished today! He says he wants to run one of those backhoes when he grows up.

I looked out the window to find him ready to watch the action~ what movie could be better than this?

Even Jacob found out how to climb on top of 'Mr. Mountain Man' for his view out the window.

Mom took the girls shopping- and upon returning, the fun was over and Elisha had moved on to more exciting adventures with PapPap- what they were, I don't know- it's hard to tell with them :)