Monthly Archives: January 2011

A Fantastic Weekend

It was such a perfectly incredible weekend.  Mostly because we spent so much time just relaxing and visiting with family.  It started out Friday night with our Chinese New Year celebration.

Saturday we went to pick out new glasses for Jim since I got my health flexible spending card in the mail Friday night… whoo hoo… we’re medically rich!  (doesn’t take a lot to excite us sometimes)  Thanks to the buy one get one sale he’s not only getting new glasses but also new sunglasses.  He was happy.
Jim Glasses 1Jim Glasses 2

After that we headed to Hen House to pick up some flowers for my Aunt and cupcakes to surprise my uncle.  His birthday was the 15th and even though I bought his card in December I forgot to mail it.  Then I failed to call on the 15th before Robert fell asleep.  That led me to feeling guilty and not calling for a few days (which is silly because I talk to them almost every day).  My aunt finally called a few days later.  A few days after that she told me my uncle had commented that he was surprised I hadn’t called or sent a card.  I made a mental note to get that card in the mail!  Then my aunt went into the hospital and it didn’t seem like a good time to send my uncle a funny card.  So, when we got there he assumed there were books for my aunt in the bag.  The boys all went to the living room and my aunt and I went to the kitchen, so she could get her flowers in water.  I put the cupcakes on a tray and called Robert to come get the card.  We walked into the living room singing “Happy Birthday” with the cupcakes all lit up.  My uncle was so pleased.  It’s never too late to do the right thing!
Robert Roses 1Robert Roses 2Robert Roses 3


We had a nice visit then came home to relax.  At bath time Robert insisted on wearing his “tool goggles” in the bath tub.
Bath 1Bath 2

Sunday morning Robert woke up on his own and came crawling into our bed all smiles and giggles.  I told him I couldn’t remember where we were going today… he smiled broadly and yelled, “Grandma’s House!!!”  So we got up and dressed and headed out.  We stopped at Starbucks for coffee and muffins.

Then it was on to Grandma’s house!!!  A lot of visiting, petting the dog, lunch and Grandma made orange julius’.
Orange Julius 1Orange Julius 2

She also introduced Robert to Charlotte’s Web… he loved it.
Charlotte's Web

When we left we stopped by Costco to re-up our membership and do some shopping.  Unfortunately it seems all of Eastern Jackson County was there too!  Aye, yay, yay!  We finally got out of there, and look like  we are stocking up for nuclear winter!  Robert was one tired pirate by the time we got home.
Pooped Pirate

Eventually he woke up and we had a very fun dinner, complete with singing.

Dinner Laughs

Such a great weekend full of family and fun.  Just as it should be!  Now they’re calling for the storm of the century to start tomorrow night.  I just need to get to the office tomorrow to pick up a grant (that is finished and the copies made) to deliver tomorrow (it’s due Tuesday) and get home and then it can snow all it wants and we will just cuddle and play!  We have food, heat, and everything else we need.


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New 52–Week 4

This week’s new was a lot of fun!  We went to a new celebration… the celebration of the Chinese New Year, year of the Rabbit, at the Nelson-Atkins Art museum.  They had all sorts of cultural activities and it was a perfect Friday night.

Robert got to make a Year of the Rabbit collage to bring love and luck in the new year.
Rabbit 1Rabbit 2Rabbit 3Rabbit 4

He got to try out a Chinese Yo Yo.
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There was a lot to explore.
Rabbit 7

They had traditional Chinese music.
Rabbit 8

Robert was too scared to watch the Lion Dance and it was very crowded.  The decorations at the museum were incredible though.
Rabbit 9Rabbit 10

We had a very good time.  And yes, Robert wore his pirate hat the whole time and consulted his “Treasure Map” that one of the teachers at school made for him often.
Rabbit 11

The funniest part of the night was when we got into the elevator.  The doors shut and Robert turned to us and said (with his hand on his hip), “OK boys, let’s do this!”  I have no idea where he gets this stuff from sometimes.


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I Wasn’t Ready for This

Saturday I went to breakfast with two really good friends, came home and ran to Target with the boys.  We had a nice lunch and I had just changed into my at home clothes when the phone rang.  It was my Mom.  My Aunt Barb was being taken via ambulance to the hospital with seizures.  While I was on the phone with her my Uncle chimed in so I switched over.  He was crying and very upset and all I could do was keep telling him I’m on my way as I grabbed for my jeans and socks.  When I got to the hospital she had had a CAT scan and was in good spirits.  She looked a hell of a lot better than I was expecting to find.  Apparently she was having uncontrollable tremors in her legs that came on about every 30 minutes and lasted 2-3 minutes.  Her spirits were really good and she was even cracking jokes.  The CAT scan showed possible stroke activity so they decided to admit her.  I really liked the neurologist, she was good and thorough and personable.  The ER doctor I was NOT impressed with and as soon as my aunt is out of the hospital I’ll be firing them off an email about his bedside manner (or lack thereof). 

All day Sunday was spent testing.  I kept thinking it was probably going to be a small stroke or Parkinson’s.  I got the call today, it’s a brain tumor.  You could have knocked me out of my chair.  The good news is it’s benign.  She will meet with a surgeon tomorrow to discuss the possible course of treatment.  She’s got an awesome attitude but also has some concerns. 

Needless to say I’m anxious for tomorrow to come so we will know what we’re going to do.  She has no choice but to be fine.  She absolutely adores Robert, and he loves her.  He needs her.  I need her.  She’s one of my best friends, we have the best time together.  When the two of us get together you can be guaranteed that there will be laughter… and LOTS of it.  We’ve vacationed together (when I was 25 or so we headed to Iowa to tour the Bridges of Madison County… still one of my best memories).  She (and my uncle) took me in when my apartment complex got taken over and we were all evicted (eviction notice on my door when I came home from my Dad’s funeral).   She’s also the best goat herder ever!
Aunt Barb Goats

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Yesterday the roads were bad enough that I got to stay home from work, which was a good thing because they cancelled preschool.  It was nice to be home with my boy for the day.

We snuggled, we played, I made cinnamon rolls, he blew bubbles, he pretended to be a t-rex… it was a lot of fun.  Sort of made me miss being off work and home with him, except for the fact I was so tired I fell asleep at 7pm and didn’t wake up until the alarm went  off at 6am!
Cinnamon Rolls
Snow Day 1Snow Day 2Snow Day 3Snow Day 4
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After Daddy got home Robert decided he wanted to go out and play in the snow.  We didn’t have a sled so Jim pulled him around the yard on the shovel… he loved it!
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Today on my lunch hour I ran out and bought him a sled.  He was so excited when I got home and he saw it.  Yes, had to sit on the sled, wearing no pants, but he had his mittens on.
RC SledA

So we had to get bundled up and go outside to break it in.
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Harley toppled him but he was wearing so many layer he hardly noticed.

RC Sled 11

Except for the fact he couldn’t sit himself back up.
RC Sled 12

“Mama!  Dada!  HELP!”  He was literally like a turtle on its shell.

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There were several a few tears when it was time to come inside since it was getting dark and Mommy and Daddy were tired and cold.  We promised that the snow would still be there tomorrow (and the next day, and next day, and next day – I am so sick of snow!)


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It started snowing about 2pm today.  It’s almost 7 and we already have 4-5 inches of snow on the ground.  They let us go from work today at 3pm and the roads were already super crappy.  Luckily it seemed most people were driving uber carefully so that helped the drive home.  I did get sideways on the 210 over pass though… and I was going less than 30 miles an hour when it happened.  Luckily I was able to get straightened out before I hit the concrete barriers… years of driving in this crap it almost comes second nature to correct myself when things go awry.  I did still hear my Dad’s voice “whatever you do, don’t hit the brakes!!!”, and he’s been dead 9 years.  Some lessons stay with you.

Jim stayed home today to get ready for and accept our appliance delivery.  Here’s the new stove…

We have a new washing machine too but I actually haven’t gone to look at it yet.  Since he was home and the appliances were here he was able to go pick up Robert when the snow started, before things started getting nasty.

This is what it looks like outside now…
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We’re sitting in the living room watching cars slide and get stuck on the hill.  When I was out front taking the last picture a truck turned on to our street and did a 180.  I don’t care anymore though because inside I’ve got this going on…
Drinks 2Drinks 3

They’re calling for 8-10 inches of snow overnight.  I’m really hoping I get the call in the morning not to come to the office.  We shall see…

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New 52–Week 3

I had today off and I really think it would have been easier on my to go to work!  I challenged myself this week to do a menu plan on Sunday taking into account breakfast, lunch and dinner for all of us and then do the shopping and, here’s the hard part, sticking to it!  I stayed up late last night putting together all the components of the plan and making my shopping list (gotta love and their recipe box/grocery list maker).  After lunch with a good friend today I headed to the grocery store, which seemed incredibly busy for a Monday at 2pm and everyone else there seemed to have 2.5 children in tow.  I actually made it out of the store in 22 minutes (I believe this is a new personal best!)  When I got home I started prepping/cooking.  Pork loin was on sale this week so I chose two pork dishes (my new since I’ve never cooked pork before… there are A LOT of things I have never cooked before).  For dinner tonight we had: apple glazed pork loin, old fashioned green beans (which I ate, ignoring my aversion to green vegetables, in an attempt to model good eating habits for Robert… he promptly “shared” his green beans with Daddy) and salad.  It was very, very good. 
apple glazed pork loin

I also made slow cooked bbq pork for our lunches in the slow cooker and an egg and sausage casserole for our breakfasts.  We are going to attempt to not hit the snooze, actually get up at 6am and have breakfast together.  A whole lot of new going on here this week!

In yesterday’s post I mentioned Robert had worn his pirate hat ALL day, including, in the bath tub…
Pirate Bath

That trend continued into the night and he wound up wearing it to bed too!
Pirate TV

The paper in his fist is a treasure map.  He’ll bring us random pieces of paper and ask us to roll them up, they are then treasure maps… I love this kid!


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Year of Weekends–January 14-16

January 14-16

We had a pretty low key weekend.  The highlights of the weekend were going to Home Depot Friday night to buy a new range and washing machine (ugh!).  It was necessary.  I wasn’t ready to let go of that much money but the oven is not shutting off all the time and was here when we moved in and the range top has always been a mess.  We’ve talked for over a year about getting a new one and now that it’s a fire hazard, it’s time.  The washing machine is on it’s last legs so I decided while we were appliance shopping we might as well preemptively replace it too.  Afterwards we headed over to Chili’s for dinner.

Saturday we headed to Blanc Burgers and Bottles on the Plaza for lunch.  It was my “New 52” for the week.  Jim had eaten there once before and was eager to go again.  We spent the rest of the day putzing around the house taking care of little things.

Sunday it was all about football.  Jim made chili for lunch and we watched the Bears game together.  Jim went to D’luxe in Parkville to watch the second game and was disappointed that he was the only person there.  Robert literally wore his pirate hat all day Sunday, including in the bathtub!  We spent a lot of time hunting treasure together.

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