Friday, May 29, 2009

Feed Me!

If you follow me on Twitter, (which also updates my Facebook status) you've already seen this unfold. If you don't follow me on Twitter,(or on Facebook) you're missing alot! Well, maybe that's relative, but in any case, this was pretty cool.

A mama robin constructed a nest in our shed and Matt took a camera (much like this one, maybe it is even this one, I can't keep up) and set it up so we could keep an eye on her and her eggs (now babies).

Meet Mrs. Robinson.

The camera feeds the signal to our TV of which I then take a picture. Not the best quality, but better than nothing. (which is what we'd see because we're not 10 feet tall)

Now meet Mrs. Robinson's eggs.

Oooo, look! They're hatching!

They're the fuzzy things in the middle.

They're HUNGRY!

They were so cute to watch the first couple of days, they're heads were so heavy they could not hold them in the upright "feed me" position for very long before they'd topple over.

They grew really fast and this is what they look like today.

I'm trying to get a little video of her feeding them but I keep running into technical difficulties. Like the power cord disappearing (!). Or technical difficulties like not being able to find my camera (!)

Yeah, he had taken it. Again.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


When we started homeschooling 5 years ago, I packed away my sewing machine, my serger, my fabric stash, my patterns, and my notions. I had spent years sewing. Kids clothes, PJ's, cloth diapers, curtains, and other crafty things so my "notions" were numerous. With homeschooling my sewing room began morphing into a supply closet...Eventually, when Hailey decided to make that room her bedroom, everything got stuffed in the attic.

Last summer during our roofing and remodeling project Jack, the contractor, fell through the roof into that portion of the attic, the section that housed my maternity clothes and sewing stuff. I remember checking on things and nothing looked damaged, so I closed it up and went on with life.

Lately, it's been calling me. (I've been known to give my stuff personalities.)

Kari... Make something... Start something you can finish in a day... Kari... I know you can hear me...

So I succumbed. I created. I started out simple.

A pretty key fob to replace my plain old blue ribbon one.

That lead to a trip to the fabric store. That led to a stack of fat quarters. That led to a wallet (that I took apart-didn't like it). That led to the clearance isle...

Which led to this.
A new purse. free pattern here!

Which led to countless searches online for other (free) patterns, (in a folder labeled "new fabric obsession") which led me to write this post. (finally). There is a limited amount of creativity allowed at one time here.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

It's That Time Of The Year Again

At this same time every year, like clockwork, it happens. Just about the same time Brett Favre thinks about coming out of retirement, my little boys see dollar signs in the yard.

Funny, I always thought they were dandelions.

Shows you how much I know.

I stopped paying for flowers but instead upped the ante and only pay for roots. This makes the getting harder, it requires tools. But what boy doesn't love using tools to get the job done?

It takes a few days.

They poke...

They pull...

They sort...

They count...

They add up...

They plan...
They tell each other funny stories while they work...

They make memories for themselves...
And me.

Friday, May 8, 2009

40 Things

  1. I was born in La Crosse, WI
  2. I've only lived in 6 different cities (not counting college) and I've been in this one since I was 13.
  3. I never had a problem making friends.
  4. Being "new and novel" was a lot easier for me than learning to maintain friendships.
  5. All I ever really wanted to be was a wife and mother. Especially after I found out how long it would take to become a Veterinarian.
  6. I don't remember a time in my life (before marriage) that we didn't have a dog.
  7. I have personally only had cats as pets. Oh, and gerbils and they count?
  8. I once owned a guppy that had 10 + babies every month or so! Her name was Big Momma.
  9. I've flushed live guppies down the toilet.
  10. I met Matt on a blind date the day after my 17th birthday.
  11. I secretly wanted my wedding dress to be an exact replica of Princess Diana's.
  12. Matt had an MRI the week before our wedding to rule out a brain tumor. It ended up just being Bell's Palsy.
  13. I still have 1 plant from my wedding.
  14. I don't have a problem organizing, I just find it impossible hard to maintain.
  15. I'm not good at hard stuff. (See #'s 3-5 and 14)
  16. I learned the hard way to wash your hands after applying Carmex and before removing your contacts.
  17. I had 5 surgeries in the first 9 years of marriage.
  18. I experienced unmedicated natural childbirth with all 5 of my kids.
  19. The nurse I had for #5 had never seen a woman give birth without drugs.
  20. Maybe I am good at hard stuff.
  21. I learned to drive on a stick shift. Thanks for making me Dad!
  22. I always believed it was necessary for my kids to take their test with a stick shift or they would never learn.
  23. My kids will not learn how to drive with a stick, because we don't own one I would trust them with.
  24. I've learned that changing my expectations mid-stream is okay once in a while.
  25. I refill my own ink cartridges.
  26. I am sometimes messy with my ink cartridges.
  27. I am fiercely loyal.
  28. The 1st real computer I ever owned was a Mac.
  29. I am a die hard Mac fan.
  30. I am also a die hard Packer fan.
  31. I am a die hard Brett Favre fan.
  32. If Brett signs with the Vikings next season I will cheer for him over the Packers.
  33. My favorite seasons in order are: Summer, late Spring, early Fall, Winter, late Fall, early Spring.
  34. My skin used to burn, peel and then start over again until I was pregnant with Griffin. Now I tan and rarely burn.
  35. My eyes change color depending on what I wear.
  36. I used to love blue mascara.
  37. I fantasize about selling everything I own, buying land in the country and living on the bus full time. Well, not everything, I'd have to keep our books to do school. And not full time, it'd get awfully cramped in the winter. It couldn't be too far in the country because trips into town would cost way too much.
  38. I am very practical.
  39. I don't have time for fantasies.
  40. I'm 40 today!!!!!!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

You'll Never Look At Laundry The Same Again

I used to keep a journal. E-mails I had written, writing assignments I had completed or just random thoughts that needed to get out. On my computer. That I never backed up.

Recently, in case you hadn't heard, I had a catastrophic event involving my hard drive. Today, a friend e-mailed me a copy of something I sent to her 5 years ago.

It's a good thing someone keeps better records than I. Thanks Kelly!

Dated Tuesday, April 27th, 2004

Hi all,

I've been invited by a marketing firm to join a focus group about clothes. I was given the following homework assignment...If clothes could talk, what would they say. I chewed on it for awhile and this is what I came up with.

The other day when the house was quiet (as it usually is at 4am) I heard voices coming from the laundry room. My interest was peaked, but as the mother of 5, I wasn't at at all surprised at what I saw when I opened the door...the lights were on, there was laundry scattered throughout the room, and partially sorted piles of white and darks laid like puddles on the floor.

Interestingly enough, a load of sweat clothes dangled from the edges of the folding table.

As far as the noise, it must've been my imagination, everyone was asleep and the cats had been giving me the silent treatment for years.

Warily, I closed the door thinking it was much too early to start the day. Just as the door clicked behind me, I heard the voices again. It wasn't my imagination, I distinctly heard a loud clear voice proclaim "Last call!"

I opened the door a crack to peek inside just as my bathrobe lifted high a bottle and toasted. "That was a close one fellas!" with that she squirted what was left of the pre-treater onto the play clothes now lined belly up to the table.

A pile of work clothes waved and said goodbye, mumbling something about having to get up early the next day. A posse of Hailey's school cothes giggled and skipped in to the laundry bin, but Sammy's clothes remained, looking tired and worn out.

"What a day", sighed the Old Navy sweatpants to my bathrobe, "hit me again". Bathrobe reached for the detergent and poured Old Navy a shot.

"I don't remember it being this muddy in the springtime." I heard the Garanimals whine.

"Did you see the beating we took when Sam tripped on the playground?" asked the Carters sweatpants. "If it weren't for our roomy fit and reinforced knees, we'd have split at the seams!"

"Did you see how many matchbox cars I carried in my pocket today?" boasted the Oshkosh B'Gosh hoodie.

"Yeah," sympathized the socks "we thought we were the only ones who had to endure having things stuffed inside us. At least you didn't have to eat in the sandbox today when Sam decided to wander out without shoes. Good think we can be bleached to make us presentable again.

"Ya know, that Mom of his sure does put us through the wringer time and time again, and as painful as it is, we always come out looking ready for action."

"That's why she bought us." Explained the wise old hand-me-down Levi's as he hoisted himself up. Every fiber of his being creaked and crackled as he laid down next to the hamper... not having the energy to go any further.

"Better be going guys, she'll be up soon." Commanded Bathrobe as she tidied up the shelf behind her. By the time she turned around every single piece of clothing had fallen asleep on the spot.

Just like Sam, I though, play hard, sleep hard.

Bathrobe silently and gently scooped up the sleeping sweats and carried them to the hamper, tucked them inside, kissed them and stood silently over them for just a moment.

I had to pull myself away as sounds of a hungry baby were emanating from upstairs. I fell asleep while feeding Isaac and when I awoke I wondered if it had all been a dream. I hurried back to the laundry room which was once again in order with no hint of what I had witnessed earlier. My bathrobe was folded neatly on top of the washer and the lights were out.

As I went through my day, I thought about what had happened and convinced myself it was a dream...

After lunch, while the kids napped. I returned to the laundry room, carefully lifted the dirty clothes and placed them in the washer. I switched the machine to the gentle cycle and added just a touch more fabric softener...for the Levi's I told myself...just in case.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Prom 2009

Hailey and Hayden attended the prom on Friday and had a wonderful time. In keeping with tradition, Hailey spent a lot of time during the week and the whole day on Friday preparing with friends and Hayden and I went shopping the morning of to get him a new shirt, a tie and a pair of dress shoes. Hayden is a one stop, practical shopper. and out in less than 15 minutes.

Hailey and her friend Megan put together this slideshow on Saturday morning. When you get to the end...the pictures of me trying to get all the bobby pins out of her hair...notice the clock...Midnight. I never stay up that late. Especially when I've been awake since 4am.

Oh, the music? Drives me crazy too.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Someone Around Here Knows What He's Doing

Parenthood is tough. Sometimes when I feel conquered, whipped and mentally drained, I admittedly cry out to God, "Why have you given me these children?"

It's typically when I'm in the shower. Cuz that's the place I go to hide, no one follows me and I have a few minutes to think. Usually. Seeing that we only have one bathroom, there normally are one or two interruptions, but since everyone enjoys privacy in the bathroom we usually don't converse during these intrusions.

But I digress...

"God, why have you given me these children? Not the actual physical beings of the children, those I prayed for. It's their dispositions, their temperaments, their propensities that I find so hard to mold, teach and sometimes, since I'm being honest...endure."

And then God humbles me and answers in just the way I need to hear, "Trust me, I know what I'm doing." These words I hear from God often, when will I get it? He continues, "These children, as you so lovingly referred to them just now, are my children that have been hand picked for you to raise and care for. I don't make mistakes. Because of their dispositions, because of their temperaments and because of their propensities I gave them to you to mold and to teach. Because of your disposition, because of your temperament and because of your propensities they are a perfect fit."

And He's right...go figure... Imagine what your child would become if they were raised by someone else. Their weaknesses that are your strengths would never be boosted, your weaknesses that are their strengths would never be challenged.

Imagine your children even in a different order. I know that our #4 would not have been a good fit as an only or even a 1st. And if #2 would have been #1, we may not have ever had more! #3 has the perfect demeanor to handle middledom. #5 takes the stress away from #4 and so on. It's not Russian roulette, it's not random chance, there is a plan! God does not make mistakes! Even in the things we perceive as diminutive details.

I'm so glad someone around here knows what He's doing and so patiently reminds me, time and time again, in the way I need to hear.

"Now get out of the shower, you're wasting water."