Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Warning: Tear-jerker ahead

It is time for dinner around here, so I'm in the middle of preparing steak, beans and a sweet potato. (Anyone want to join us?) Beth is my ever-present companion these days, so I was listening with half an ear to her chatter as I busied myself with dinner preps. Suddenly she had my full attention when she expressed "I miss Daddy."

"I do too, Sweetie." I said, wondering what brought that thought on.

With pink nani in hand, hair still mussed up from her nap, Beth declares: "I wish Daddy could come home so I can give him hugs and kisses."

Clear as day, no slurring of sounds, her simple words touched my heart.

Beth, Mommy agrees with you. I wish Daddy were here, so I could give him hugs and kisses too.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Being a Dog "Mom".

Having Eli and Abbey around...how can I describe the pleasure and satisfaction I get from having these two furry beasts share my life? I watch them doze on the floor next to me, knowing that the second I make a move Abbey will be up, eager to go on an adventure. Eli's darker form is curled up, conserving body heat as the house cools off. Abbey's blond fuzzy feet stretch out in front of her. Both dogs seem to sense that I'm thinking about them, they stretch in unison, Abbey lifts her head to look at me, Eli gives a deep sigh before he adjusts his body to accommodate his aches.

Their companionship often is taken for granted. They give me so much, and expect so little in return. All they really want is to be with me. An occasional thrown ball just adds frosting to the cake. Dogs really are good for ones self esteem - Eli and Abbey look up to me, they are always eager to see me. If only I could live up to their opinion of me.

I truly believe that God put these guys here to teach me a little bit about his unconditional love. OK, this may sound strange, but hear me out. Think about it... I have to do absolutely nothing to earn their devotion. Some days they will be virtually ignored, blending into the background. Yet, their focus is almost always on me. I just have to whisper a key word (walk, eat, ball) and they are by my side, anxious to see what comes next. I can be gone for 8 hours, run into the house at the end of the day and they are waiting at the door, tails enthusiastically beating a rhythm on the walls. No matter what I do, no matter how I feel, no matter what I look like, they love me and want to be near me. That is a textbook definition of unconditional love.

Oh, and yes. Eli IS using my Vera Bradley messenger bag as a pillow. ARGH! :)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Cleaning as therapy.

It might sound strange, but cleaning my floor on my hands and knees really helped my outlook. I don't make it a habit to scrub my floor the old-fashioned way, but it just sounded good. (I know, I know, I'm certifiably crazy. I've heard it before.) The girls and I had a superbly efficient day in school, so I figured I would work on the floor while they played after lunch.

It was actually relaxing, in an odd sort of way, to move around the floor with sponge, water and rags. Cleaning the 18" tiles, getting a weeks worth of Beth's spills out from under her chair, and swiping up the stray dog fur that escaped the vacuum was kind of empowering. I think I feel as if I was slowly taking control back over the craziness the house has descended into.

Since Scott left one month ago, the girls and I have been so busy GOING. We've travelled, played flyball, had sleepovers with friends, schooled, played with friends, and generally dinked around. It has been an escape of sorts, and we needed the change of pace to help adjust to deployment life.

However, as we look forward to beginning our cross-country trek, I feel the need to get the house in order before we go. Maybe bringing the home back in order will help the girls and I as we pack and move our selected belongings into the trailer. This coming week, I can concentrate on packing and travel plans, as we've been given a gift and we will be able to pay someone to come clean the house before we leave, no more scrubbing the floor for me. :)

It's funny though. As I look around at the house, only one pile of laundry on the couch, the vacuum in the corner, and just a few papers lying around, the clean kitchen floor is spreading outward. Kitchen counters were wiped down last night instead of being ignored. Our general pick-up of accumulated clutter was more detailed than usual. Isn't it funny how something so simple, scrubbing a kitchen floor, can have such far reaching effects?

Oh, I learned two more "life lessons" yesterday as I scrubbed...

A 3-years old attention span will be 15 minutes less than it needs to be. Beth insisted on accompanying me as I cleaned the last few tiles. :)


Do NOT serve couscous for dinner the same day you've scrubbed the floor. (This is the reason the vacuum is still in the corner.)

What an odd life I lead! I love every aspect of it, even the therapy I get from being on my hands and knees, up to my elbows in suds. I've truly been blessed by the Lord!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Things I've learned the HARD way.

Surprise, surprise, I'm a bit stubborn. Hard-headed, obstinate, willful, contrary, stiff-necked and good old fashioned PIG-HEADED! Lately, as I operate on less sleep than my body likes, I've learned a few things the hard way. I thought that everyone might enjoy a short list of what I've learned. Maybe I can help someone avoid a similar problem!
  1. The more kids you have, the more your joy, but the bigger the messes around the house!
  2. Bleach works wonders at removing color from clothing, it just never removes red marker.
  3. When changing a baby's very messy diaper, make sure to have duct taped the child's hands to the changing table. Otherwise certain areas get touched, resulting in screams of disgust from the mother.
  4. When using an immersion blender (aka. a stick blender) to mix a shake, make sure one hand is on the blender and the other is on the cup. Neglecting to have a firm hold of the cup will result in a very messy geyser-like eruption of milk and protein powder.
  5. A gallon of milk, if dropped from a height of 3 feet onto a concrete garage floor, will burst open, spilling its contents.
  6. My garage floor is NOT level. (I know this because of lesson #2.)
  7. When grilling a high-fat meat (such as tri-tip roast from Costco) make sure the burners directly under the meat are turned off - or at least on low. Otherwise, dinner will resemble a charcoal brick.
  8. If you have a tattoo, don't be surprised if your daughters play "Tattoo Parlor", instead of "Beauty Parlor" like most girls.
All of these life lessons have been learned within the past two weeks. I'm sure there will be many more over the next few weeks as we get ready for our cross-country trek. I'll share them as I learn! :)

Just because I need a smile!

Beth - hamming it up as usual!

I've been feeling a bit down today, but a call from Melody and the posted picture have helped. I'll cuddle up with the dogs in bed, and work some sudoku puzzles - that always helps too. :)

Who knows better?

Jehovah Jireh! God is my provider.

I really struggle with obedience to the Lord in certain situations. I KNOW that God knows best, and yet there are times when I feel that I know a better way to accomplish my goals. (Hmmm, maybe that is part of the problem, MY goals, not HIS plan for me.)

It is hard for me to ask for help, even when I am in need. Such was the case with getting back up to North San Diego to get my truck this past Thursday. The courtesy shuttle would not be able to pick me up, as I live too far away for a pick up during the evening traffic. I thought I needed to find a way to get me and my 4 girls up to the truck, and was running the options through my mind on Wednesday night.

As I was thinking, I felt pushed (not prompted, pushed) by the Lord to ask my homeschool group for help. I didn't want to follow his push to ask the group for help. "No, Lord. They are busy, there is a field trip tomorrow, etc." (The list of excuses were long.) However, the Lord knows better than I do, doesn't he?

I obeyed. I e-mailed the group and was feeling down on Thursday morning when no quick solution had presented itself to me before I left to take the truck to the service center. (I'm real good at throwing short pity parties for myself. Fortunately they usually don't last long.) Surprise, His ways are not my ways. The Lord didn't want just one person to be able to serve me, rather he used two whole families! God is so good.

One family watched Katelynn, Emily, and Beth while another friend and her daughter took me up to Kearny Mesa. My friends daughter was even able to keep Hailey entertained during the entire 30 minute drive, leaving Hailey with a lollipop to keep her occupied while I drove back down home, through traffic. There were time constraints for everyone involved, and the Lord worked it all out! I've never moved so quickly though I-805 southbound at 5 in the evening!

Coincidence? No. God's provision? A resounding YES!

I know I'll struggle with obedience in the future, however, I pray that this faith building lesson will remind me that I need to trust Him, and not my own power.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Hailey makes some progress...

Hailey is such an interesting child. Tonight she decided she would stand all on her own for the first time. She received cheers and thunderous applause - the 3 Beane girls are here for a weekend sleepover. She enjoyed being the center of attention, and proceeded to repeat her standing performance to receive more cheers and applause. Eventually, her sense of humor took over. She would proceed to stand up halfway and then fall down in order to make her audience laugh. She was laughing as hard as we were! What a nut. It would appear that she is well on her way to becoming a showman, like big sister Beth.

Hailey does have an ear infection too. The doctor confirmed it this morning, so please add her to your prayers. I'll update tomorrow how the Lord worked so that I could get my truck back after being serviced. It was a real faith building lesson for me. I'm a bit stubborn, and for some reason I think I know better than Him how things should work out. When will I learn?

I'm up way too late again. I just really enjoy this time of quiet aloneness. I sure wish I could retrain my body clock so I could enjoy the quiet aloneness the first thing in the morning!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Prayer Requests

In the hustle and bustle of Hailey's physical therapy appointment, dinner at a friends home, and AWANA, it has been fairly easy to forget that today was Valentine's Day. Scott surprised me with a phone call and a package from Hershey! Both were unexpected and very appreciated. As I sit here, surrounded by Mt. Washmore (never ending laundry for those not familiar with Flylady), I am having a hard time believing that it was only this morning that I heard Scott's voice on the phone.

Yesterday, my friend Janet came over to help me plan the epic cross-country trek the girls and I will be taking starting next month. She was the cool head to help temper my emotional enthusiasm. The trip is planned, now I just need to contact everyone I hope to visit with along the way. I'm so ecstatic about getting this trip underway, now I just have to sit down and get all the preparations done. (15 minutes a day, right?)

So, now I'm left with the clear realization that I can not rely only on my own strength.

6 Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.7 Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:6-7,13

This leads me to prayer requests I have for my family. I truly do need, and seriously desire your prayers. I've been so encouraged by the phone calls, e-mails and comments to this blog. So please, if you do pick one of my prayer requests, would you please let me know? It is amazing how much I feel lifted and supported just knowing that I am covered in prayer.
  • Health. It feels as if with 4 kids, there is always someone sick. Right now, Beth and Katelynn have ear infections and the antibiotics are affecting Beth's intestinal tract. (No more information needed.) Pray that they heal quickly, that the rest of us do not get sick, and that our health holds during the trip. God is the great healer!
  • Emotions. Deployment, separation from Scott - it brings a large emotional roller coaster to all of us. Katelynn appears to be the one hardest hit - there are numerous bouts of tears, daily. Pray for Katelynn to be able to process her feelings, for me to be able to give her the comfort she needs, and for all of us to be open with each other. The Lord is my refuge.
  • School. I've purposely kept expectations for this school year pretty minimal. I just want to finish our set curriculum before Scott returns at the end of the summer. Pray for diligence on my part, willing hearts on the part of Katelynn and Emily and for me to not be so hard on myself. Many of my homeschooling friends have counseled me to remember the reasons I homeschool. The academics were not the primary reason. Plus, how many kiddos get to see so much of the USA in their lifetime, much less one school year?!?
  • Dogs. The dogs are coming with us, they are a great source of comfort (they sleep on Scott's side of the bed now, so I don't feel so lonely. Sorry hon. :) ), however, they are also a source of stress. I feel guilty for not caring for their needs like I want to. Abbey is currently waking me up at 2am to run outside, her intestinal track is quite delicate, and something has upset its balance. I'm tired of cleaning up after her. Pray that she will heal quickly, and that she will settle into the drive. Abbey is a very nervous passenger. Pray that Eli's age will not be a problem on the trip - he is getting stiffer every day. My heart aches to see him in pain, pray that the vet. will be able to offer some help before we leave.
  • Time. I'm very quickly becoming overwhelmed at all that has to get done before I leave. Pray for the Lord to remind me to accomplish only what he sets before me each day. Pray that I can effectively prioritize my "To Do" list, and also make sure I take care of myself. There are so many random little things to get done, I'm afraid that something will fall through the cracks.
  • Sleep. It is so easy for me, a natural night owl, to stay up late into the night. Since Scott left I've been staying up way too late, trying to get random tasks accomplished that were passed over earlier in the day. Pray that I will not neglect this very important way to rejuvenate!
  • Vehicles. Tomorrow I'll take the truck up for some routine maintenance. I still don't know how I'll get back up to pick up the truck, but the Lord has provided a way home from the service center. The truck will be there all day, and I can not imagine trying to keep the girls entertained from 9am until 3pm in the small waiting room! Please urgently pray that the Lord will provide a ride back up to the truck. The trailer also needs to get in to be serviced before we leave. I'm just not sure when would be best. Pray that the maintenance it needs will be accomplished quickly. Please also pray for both the trailer and Suburban to be sound, for there to be no major breakdowns, and for the routine maintenance on both vehicles to be done quickly and with no unknown problems.
  • Details. We've all heard the expression "The devil is in the details." Well, I fully disagree. I know that the Lord is in the details. Pray that I would forget no detail. Pray that nothing would be left behind, pray that the Lord would remind me of every little thing that needs to be done.
I am constantly amazed at God's provision for my family. He is an awesome God. He is risen, alive, and actively working in the world today. My last prayer request is that HE would be glorified in this trip. I've heard many times over that I'm so brave, strong, sure, etc. for taking this trip. NO. I've been given this awesome opportunity by the Lord. My husband is temporarily away, my kids are with me at home, why not grab what I've been given, and make the most of it. My purpose in life is to glorify God. It is in his power that the girls and I embark upon this exciting journey. Pray that we would be able to show others God's love in every mile we travel!

OK, It is way late again. I've rambled on long enough. *grin* Thank you for letting me put my prayer requests before you. It is humbling to know that I can not do this alone!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

They never fail to amaze me! - Part 2

OK, so midmorning turned into late at night. It really wasn't my fault, I promise! Beth had a doctors appointment this morning at 8:30. Two and a half hours later, we were finally all home, with antibiotics for Beth AND Katelynn. It turns out that both girls have raging ear infections. ARGH! Maybe that is why Beth woke up every hour during Saturday night crying. I need to remember that even though she talks ALOT, she can't always explain what is wrong. Poor girl never told me she was in pain.

Anyway, here are pictures from this weekend in Blythe that I said I'd post... I'm still amazed that the girls all did so well. (Especially since it turns out that two of them had ear infections!)

For every race, a team member takes down the time for each individual dog. This gives us a run down for how the dogs are running over a long period of time, trends, etc.

While running the all girl, jr. handler team, Hailey bravely stepped in to take down the split times for us! :)

Uncle Bob, our usual boxloader, walks with Emily to the end of the ring - giving some last minute pointers.

Emily, in action, loading tennis balls into the flyball box for 2 golden retrievers, 1 border collie, and 1 jack russell terrier running at her full speed.

Here's the all girl, jr. handler team ready to go! The first picture is looking toward the back of the ring, where the dogs start running. The second picture is looking at the end of the ring, toward the box (and Emily).

Katelynn and Abbey - ready to run!

Beth, thoroughly enjoys her chocolate chip cookie. Like mother, like daughter!

Hailey tries to clean off her feet after spending all day in the grass and dirt. I think she's working in vain!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

They never fail to amaze me!

The girls and I have spent the past 3 nights in Blythe, CA. (Yes, it sounds like "blight" for a reason.) We definitely did not go for the scenery, rather we went to keep the dogs happy. I know that many of my friends (and family too) think that I am crazy for going all over the country just to win fuzzy dog toys. But, the girls and I really enjoy time outside with the dogs, and good friends. So this weekend, we all journeyed to the eastern edge of California to run around in the sun at the edge of the Colorado River.

We didn't leave Chula Vista until about 6pm, running a few errands before we picked up the trailer and headed east. Due to various bathroom stops (the girls) and coffee stops (mine) we ended up arriving at the RV park at 1:30 in the morning. I did the bare minimum to hook up water and power, left the truck hitched to the trailer and hit the sack around 2am. We missed the first Catchers race so the girls could sleep in, and eventually got to the tournament mid-morning.

Even though I have two dogs who run flyball, I elected to only put Eli on the team for this tournament - as he was only 1600 points from his next title. I would love to get his Onyx title before he officially retires, we'll see if his hips can last. On the drive up, I had explained to Katelynn that Abbey wouldn't be running, and Katelynn was sorely disappointed. Katelynn has been running Abbey in practice and was looking forward to the opportunity to run a dog in this tournament. I was impressed with Katelynn being able to tell me - in words, not by whining - that she was sad she wouldn't be running.

So, on Sunday, we put Abbey on the roster, and Katelynn ran in her first tournament! I am so proud of her. Her reaction time is MUCH better than mine, so I'm sure she'll achieve more accurate passes as she grows in her ability to run Abbey. Abbey ran well, not fast, but consistent. Abbey loves Katelynn, and didn't have any problem running for her - they even had an early pass in one run! (This is a huge thing, because Abbey is so nervous, she usually doesn't have the confidence to go in early on a dog, she'll usually avoid the jumps altogether!)

Pam and I were talking about how we had enough kids between the two of us (7 girl "String-Beanes) to make up a Jr. Handler team. So that is just what we did for the next race! What fun it was to throw together a team of all girl handlers, all girl dogs, and a YOUNG girl boxloader - Emily. Yes, you read that right, Emily box loaded for the team for the rest of the day. I'm thrilled that Emily was able to stay focused and get the balls into the correct hole for the dog running down the lane at her! Boxloading can be a tough job and Emily excelled. (Bob stayed near if there was any malfunction, but Emily held her own with dogs throwing themselves onto the box.) Beth even pitched in later in the day to "shag" balls - picking up the tennis balls to keep them out of the racing ring. The line up for the Jr. Handler team ended up being:
Heather Beane - Sophie (Border Collie)
Katelynn - Abbey (Golden Retriever)
Holly Beane - Sherry (Golden Retriever)
Hope Beane - Roxy (Jack Russell Terrier)
Emily - Boxloader

What fun!!! Emily and Katelynn received Jr. Handler ribbons at the end of the day in honor of their hard work. Every time I turn around, I am constantly reminded of how quickly my girls are growing up. Before too long I'll have enough help to run my own team at a tournament. If only I could get a few more dogs to match the kiddos I have. Hmmmm. Scott is gone for a while, maybe he won't notice an extra pup lying around the house. *evil grin*

Check back mid-morning for pictures of the weekend. I'm bushed so I'm going to head to bed instead of dig my camera out of the truck in the rain. I'm a wimp, I know!
Night all!

Friday, February 09, 2007

A true girls weekend.

The girls and I have made it back home - for one night. We're off tomorrow afternoon for a weekend of flyball in Blythe. I'm noticing that the girls do best on a routine - such as school, or when we are away from home. I didn't have anyone melt down most of our travel time over the past week, but once we returned home this evening after Bible Study - whoa! Everyone was missing Daddy. It is tough on me to be so busy, but it is helping the girls adjust, so off we head once again.

Our first stop on our last trip, was to visit with my sister, Melissa, and my niece, Hannah. They opened their home to the chaos that I bring (minus the dogs - they got to sleep at Nana & Papa's). I am not sure Melissa knew exactly what she was saying when she said that the girls and I could spend the weekend with her. :)

We began our visit with a trip to the nail salon. We took over the small establishment and enjoyed the pampering - a treat from Mel. Even Beth was able to get her tiny nails done. Think she enjoyed it?

Next stop was Toppers Pizza where we met up with my parents, Brian (Mel's boyfriend), Joanie (Brian's sister), and two of Hannah's friends - Kayla & Vanessa. Melissa had arranged to have a surprise birthday party for Katelynn, balloons and cake (bake by Grandma) included. It was great to see Katelynn light up when she realized the celebration was for her!

Then came the slumber party... Wow, you've never heard such silliness. As it turns out, Beth was the source of most of the antics after 11pm, so I pulled her into bed with me so the other girls could get to sleep. It took her all of 2 minutes to fall asleep once she was done being the ring-leader.

The girls woke up bright and early, eager for Hannah's party at Pump It Up. Eventually, after much primping and preening - I braided the girls hair for the event - we were ready to go. What fun!!! Everyone got onto the huge inflatables - even Hailey was able to have fun. She and I went down the slide, and bounced around in two of the bounce houses. She actually smiled for most of the 2 hours we were there! Beth couldn't contain herself - she was actually allowed to bounce, as much as she wanted, for as long as she wanted. It was a dream come true! I think the highlight for me was watching my parents enjoy themselves with their grandgirls. Mom and Dad even raced through the gigantic obstacle course. I think Mom won, right Dad?

Eventually, the girls wound down, and as the party ended Scott called from Guam. His cell phone worked! We haven't seen the bill yet - that may be scary. I do love modern technology though. Hearing his voice makes this temporary separation a bit more bearable.

We wrapped up the weekend by watching the Super Bowl at my parents house. It was great to relax and visit after the energy of the party. My batteries were recharged, and we continued on to Atascadero for a visit with Scott's sister, Amanda, and her kiddos. More on them later, for now it is WAY TOO LATE, and I have to get stuff ready for our Homeschool Park Day tomorrow. The curse of a night owl, I'm not even tired, and I know I need to head to bed. Hopefully the dogs have it warmed up for me, I HATE crawling into a cold bed.

'Night all!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Comments from the kids.

I've said it before, and I'll probably say it again, but life with four young girls sure can generate tons of laughter. We've been traveling around Southern California visiting with family before we head out of the state for our big, 27-state, 9-week, cross-country trek. During the week, Beth and Emily have come up with some real zingers. Two that have stuck in my mind are detailed below.

Emily and Katelynn have taken advantage lately of Papa's agreement to pay a nickel for each rock they pick out of the backyard. Apparently, a previous tenant dumped an aquarium in the back yard, turquoise rocks and all. Papa just hasn't had the time to get to the tedious job of picking the tiny blue stones out of the dirt, but found a few willing volunteers in my two oldest daughters. (Beth has even joined in for a few quarters worth.) Emily was proudly spending a few of her hard earned dollars at Michael's the other night. When the cashier handed her the change, Emily proudly announced to all who were in earshot. "Yeah! Now I have some cents." Well, if you say that last sentence aloud, you'll realize why the cashier and I burst out into laughter. I still giggle when I remember her look of pride.

This next little tidbit comes from Beth, who often amazes me with her understanding of the world around her. It may not be appropriate for young children. (Rich, Mel, read ahead of the kids... *grin*) Much to my disappointment, Hailey decided shortly after her first birthday that she was done nursing. I've been quite sad to let go of that part of our relationship, but thought we had moved on. Well, for whatever reason, my chest has all of a sudden become quite fascinating to Hailey again. While in the grocery cart, she'll "honk" both sides and grin like an idiot. I just about fainted in Albertson's when she did that the first time. So while running errands with Hailey and Beth this week, Hailey reached down and patted me a few times. I tried to divert her attention elsewhere when Beth pipes up "Mommy, she's milking you like a cow!"

It took me a little while to convince Beth that the tears running down my face were not because I was sad. Rather, I was laughing so hard that I began to cry. I definitely need to remember moments like these when the times get tough. :)

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Making it FUN!!!

Like most moms, I feel like the housework is NEVER done. There is always something to do - dishes, laundry, pickup toys (mine, as well as the kids), cooking, shuttle-bus driving. The list is long. I'm attempting to get back in a routine with the house chores, I've tried Flylady, Chorecards, the SLOB sisters, and various random organization ideas.

Before Beth was born, I was in a fabulous routine! I even made my bed at 4:00 in the morning, in labor, as Scott and I prepared to drive to the hospital for Beth's birth. :) However, that was 2 kids, and 4 homeschool years ago. What worked then isn't necessarily working now.

I do definitely need an accountability partner. One who isn't "Born Organized", and who has to remember to wipe the counters down after dinner. Otherwise my random, sidetracked ways won't be understood. Any volunteers?

OK, all of this is written to kind of explain the picture I'm putting in todays post. Years ago, I read in one of my various Flylady e-mails that a woman made the tedious task of washing her kitchen floor more fun by using sanitary napkins. She used the adhesive to stick the pads to her feet, and she "skated" around the floor spraying a cleaning solution in front of her as she went. (I'm guessing that this was before the Swiffer WetJet came out.) Needless to say, this vision has stayed in my head, and I just HAD to try it.

I'm not courageous enough to try this on my own, but the Lord has blessed me with a few volunteers, or conscripted prisoners. The girls are almost always willing to try Mom's crazy ideas for making housework more fun. Even Emily was game!

The first time we attempted this crazy idea, I chased Katelynn, Emily, Beth and my nephew Tyler around the kitchen with a mop and cleaning solution, while they used squirt guns and squirt bottles filled with water to kill the mop. Everyone had fun, and we were exhausted by the time the floor was clean. Poor Tyler really doesn't know what to think of his Crazy Aunt Janell.

More recently, I gave Katelynn, Emily and Beth the Swiffer WetJet and some sanitary napkins to get the floor clean while I worked in another area of the house. One girl was armed with the mop - and the cleaning spray, while the other two "ice-skated" away, trying to clean the tile, but stay out of reach of the spray.

Each girl took a turn being armed with the Swiffer, while the others stayed just out of reach. I don't think my floor has been that clean in a while. :) They did a fantastic job, I got a ton of laundry folded, and we all enjoyed laughing at our silliness.

Isn't life fun???

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Procrastination. I'll talk about it later.

I really don't know what character flaw I have that causes me to habitually procrastinate on things. When I procrastinate, it isn't always putting off an unpleasant task, or avoiding doing something I don't want to do. Well, alright, maybe that is the case with dusting or weeding.

I'm supposed to leave my house tomorrow morning, with kids and dogs in tow, for an 11am appointment to get my taxes done. To most people this wouldn't be too big of a deal, however, I have to drive over 3 hours to get to my tax guy. (I'll be going to the office that handles my parents taxes, my in-laws, my sisters, etc. It's a family thing.) Not an enjoyable thing, per se, however, I am also going to see my in-laws, stay with my sister, celebrate my niece's birthday, watch the Superbowl with my folks, then go visit my sister-in-law for a few days. All really great things, I'm really excited about the next week.

However...it is now 10:20pm, I need to leave in about 8 hours, I don't have my tax paperwork pulled together yet, the laundry isn't fully done, so I haven't packed yet. I haven't weighed out the dogs food yet, and I have to wash diapers too. Why do I do this to myself???

To someone who doesn't normally put things off, I'm sure I sound crazy. "Why didn't you do a little bit each day this week?" is a thought going through your mind, I'm sure. :) And I have an answer...I don't really know. Anyone have any miracle cures? A magic wand perhaps?

Now, if you are a procrastinator, you probably are nodding your head in understanding. "Been there, done that" you agree.

So now I am opening the floor to you... How many out there are with me? And how many of you do I envy? :) I'm eager to learn, let me know how you naturally organized people live!

Off to get some things done to prepare for tomorrow. I promise, I'll get to bed before midnight!!!

Friday, February 02, 2007

Nada, zilch, zip, nothing...

I have nothing to post tonight. I promised myself I would get to sleep before midnight tonight, and that time is quickly approaching.

I do need to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who is actually reading my ramblings. Your comments (on the blog and off) have helped me through the first two weeks of Scott's deployment. It is amazing how much I enjoy writing, and connecting with our family and friends. The girls and I are always eager to see each morning who has written in and it never fails...someone always makes us smile. So, THANK YOU!

And now, I am off to bed. However, before I go, here is something to make you smile. Think of it as my "Thank you" to all of you. :)

Thursday, February 01, 2007

My dogs think I'm crazy...

I wish I could see inside Abbey and Eli's brains tonight. Normally, these dogs are great golden lumps on the floor. Something to step over, walk around, run into...you get the picture. Not tonight. I had tuned my iPod into my favorite mix. "Ashton" by Michael W. Smith came on, and I turned it wwwaaaaaaayyyy up. (I need all the motivation I can get when I'm washing dishes and straightening the house at 9:45 at night.) Then, "Me & My Gang" by Rascal Flatts began to play, and I couldn't contain myself. I began to dance and sing along. Let me tell you, those dishes sure were washed quickly!

Eli quickly vacated his spot in front of the oven, as he got tired of me dancing around him, fetching the dirty dishes from dinner. Abbey soon watched me nervously from under the table. Their expressions were priceless! They weren't sure what was going on. Eventually, they got used to me dancing and singing so loudly that they began to catch the energy and moved to the living room to wrestle. Isn't is awesome to see the Lord's sense of humor??? I'll definitely go to sleep with a smile on my face tonight.