Monday, June 30, 2008

My dinnertime creation!

Last week when I was making my menu & grocery list, this "creation" just came to me.  I don't think I've ever eaten anything like this before, but it was GOOD!  So here's the ingredients.  See if you can figure out how I used them.  (NOTE:  I ended up NOT using the broth.)

Stumped? goes.  I'm not sure what to call it, but maybe you could call it Liz's Spaghetti & Veggies casserole?  You come up with a name for it & leave it in my comments.

1/2 of a 1lb. box spaghetti noodles
2 12.5oz cans of chicken breast (mostly drained, leave a little liquid)
1 can Italian diced tomatoes (do NOT drain)
1 can sliced mushrooms (drained)
1/2 of a box of frozen chopped spinach
4-6oz cheddar cheese

First, grease a 13"x9" pan & set it aside.  Preheat the oven to 350. 

Cook the spaghetti noodles & drain.  Stir in chicken breast.  (of course, if you have some breasts on hand you could chop up that instead of using canned)  Spread that out in the bottom of pan.

In a bowl, mix tomatoes & mushrooms, then spoon on top of the spaghetti mixture.

On top of that, make a layer of spinach.  I only used 1/2 of the box, but you can increase or decrease the amount you use according to what your family likes.

I had an 8oz block of cheddar cheese that I cut into little strips to top the casserole.  You could use shredded cheese, too.  I only used about 1/2 of the block of cheese, but you could increase/decrease according to your family's taste.

When it's all put together, it looks like this.

Throw that into the oven & set the timer for 30 minutes.  Go outside & enjoy watching your children act like crazy people, getting wet & silly with the water hose.

(He was shoving the hose up her shirt...can you see the water falling from the bottom of her shirt?)

Of course, he then had to run it down his pants to see how that would feel!  LOL!

(yes, he did find her!)

At about the 20 minute point, go inside & remove the casserole from the oven & put some garlic bread in.  It'll cook for the last 10 minutes & then the whole meal is ready to eat.  This is the casserole after it was done.

YUM!  Savannah, Sarah, Larry & I all loved it!  Samuel was his usual picky self & said he didn't want to eat it.  He did finish off 1/2 a piece of garlic bread & a few noodles before he claimed that he was "full".  Oh well, most of us liked it!

Summer 2008, Day 31

This morning, Samuel & Sarah went off to day camp at a local church.  It's essentially a full day VBS program.  They'll do that every day this week (other than Friday, since it's a holiday).  I'm hoping they'll have a blast.  On top of the usual VBS stuff, they're having BB guns, archery, sling shots and on Thursday, they'll have a water day so they get to wear their bathing suits that day!  I can't wait to see what they come home saying this afternoon!

In the meantime, Savannah & I have packed up her suitcase for camp.  She leaves in the morning.  We have a few things to go buy, so as soon as the dryer stops & I have some clean clothes to put on, we'll run to CVS for those things.  Hard to believe that my BABY girl is big enough for Youth Camp!  Yikes....I remember Youth Camp!  It wasn't that long ago that I went, was it?

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Spiritual Gifts test

I have taken these tests over & over throughout the years.  In case you haven't ever taken one or would like to do it again, go to this site.  Answers to the questions are based on a 0-4 standard with 0 being "not at all like me" & 4 being something that describes you perfectly.  Email me if you'd like to see my results.

Day 30--things I love

Things I love---
I'm sure we've all seen the "natural highs" email that has circulated over the years.  This website shows the list that most of us got in that email.  I love the list because it never fails to make me smile every time I get it.  Recognizing the "little things" that give you goosebumps in life is something I try to do on a regular basis, but often times I look right past the sunshine only to complain about the heat.  The circulating email itself asks you to add your own things to the list & send it onto a thousand friends who each in turn add onto the list & pass it forward.
Last week, a friend of mine posted her own list of things she loves on her blog.  I told her that I was inspired by seeing her sweet list and so I'd post my own.  It's been about a week since then & I've stayed busy and forgotten about it, but last night when I was going through the blogs I frequently check, I saw her list again & decided it was time to get to work on my own!  And you have it.  My list of favorite things.  My very own "natural highs" if you will.
I love.......
Sitting in the passenger seat while Larry drives...just talking.  My very favorite memories of our dating years are filled with all the nights we stayed out for HOURS & HOURS talking.  Of course with gas prices what they are right now, our endless drives just to talk are minimal (actually, pretty much non-existent), but I love taking a drive to nowhere in particular just to get out of the house & talk.  Any time when we can be alone & totally focus on each other (read: no interruptions by phones or kids or whatever) is priceless!
I love......
the way that my husband makes me laugh.  After all these years together, he is still the funniest person I know.  Sometimes he pushes the limits a little & makes me blush...or totally shocks me, but honestly, he is a hoot & it's rare that everyone he meets doesn't think the same thing.
HAHAH12.gif Laughing image by catiemouse
I love......
when he takes care of me or one of the kids when we're sick.  While he has the medical training (he's an ex-paramedic), he can also just be a nurturing, loving, gentle nurse who holds hands, wipes brows & hugs us when we're feeling bad.
nurse-1.jpg Male Nurse image by krisandmere
I love.....
his awesome grilled cheese sandwiches!
grilled-cheese-sandwich--.jpg GRILLED CHEESE image by soccerboy218
I love.......
hearing Savannah talk about her love of Neopets, books, writing.....and her disinterest in boys.  She'll be 12 in August and I know this time of her life is fleeting.  Before I blink, she'll be lost in a world of boys & hairstyles & make up and all of that nonsense that got me in so much trouble as a young teenager.  I'm glad we're not "there" yet.  Of course, I love seeing glimpses of "girlyness" in her, but I admire the fact that she is her own person & doesn't really care if other people her age think she's 'less than'.  She is proud to be herself.  I was never that brave at her age.  Go Savannah!
I love.......
watching Samuel's chest puff up when I encourage him and tell him how big & strong he is.  I never lived my life as a little boy, but I'm quickly learning how precious little men can be.  He likes to roll in the mud & chase bugs & make noises 24 hours a day, but he's also the most loving, gentle, compassionate, snuggly little thing.  He likes to burp & make armpit noises, but he also loves to write songs & poems for his friends & family.  It's so much fun to watch him move from testosterone to tender in 5 minutes' time.
I love.......
how tender & gentle Sarah's heart is.  Seeing her so deeply convicted of the most minor infractions is awesome!  To know that her little heart is so in tune with the breath of watch her raise her hands in worship to feel her tears on my shoulder when she thinks she has disappointed Him or have her remind us all that we should pray before eating (at *every* meal!).  Oh, the heart of a little one so in love with God.  I'm amazed by her sweet childlike faith.
I love.......
going to weddings and seeing the groom's face as his bride comes down the aisle toward him.
annegeddessbridengroom.jpg Bride And Groom image by angelmom39_photos
I love.......
when our pastor announces that someone who came forward has accepted Christ & will spend eternity in Heaven with me!  (Can you hear the angels singing, too?)
Jesus.gif Jesus. image by leahboia
I love.......
seeing the baptism of an elderly person.
I love.......
going grocery shopping by myself and having time to sort through clearance racks of books, clothes, toys; inspecting & smelling the fruits and veggies before picking just the right one.
food.jpg A week's grocery shopping image by catnip13
I love.......
the boneless BBQ chicken wings at KFC.
kfc_logo.jpg . image by luludo91
I love.......
taking pictures of my family.
camera.jpg camera image by brooke_man
I love.......
laughing until I cry.
SmilielaughSmallercopy.jpg laughing Smilie image by pasticheabrac
I love.......
laying in bed for those last few moments after the alarm goes off, praying & stretching, listening to the silence for just a little bit longer.
P1000365.jpg Rise and shine image by yackowackodotld
I love.......
when my kids crawl into bed to snuggle with me in those early morning hours, only to doze off & snore beside me.
2-7.png letss cuddle image by loganh7
I love.......
soaking in a tub of hot bubbles while reading a good book or People magazine.
bubble_bath_strawberry_shortcake.gif strawberry shortcake taking bath image by mochi-cakie
I love.......
hearing my husband talking about me before I enter the room, hearing him compliment me or talk sweetly about me; hearing from the Sunday School class that he talked about me on a Sunday I wasn't there & left them all feeling all mushy & sweet because of whatever he said.
blushing.gif woo! happy blushing smiley! image by lamaurt
I love.......
eggnog at Christmas time.
eggnog.jpg eggnog image by carambella
I love.......
watching my children sleep.
sleepingchildfairy.jpg SLEEPING CHILD FAIRY image by kajieneken
I love.......
watching a good stand up comedian with my husband, laughing til our cheeks hurt and then reliving all the funny parts later on when we repeat them & laugh all over again.
JeffFoxworthy.jpg Jeff Foxworthy image by spinaldex
I love.......
the scent of Deep Woods Off (the bug repellant).  I can't smell it without being transported back to all my summers at Timberline Baptist Camp in Lindale, TX.  I think that was the only brand/scent of bug repellant they had back then.  The same goes for Love's Baby Soft perfume--all of the girls at camp wore it one summer & I've never smelled it since without thinking of G.A. camp at Timberline!
Off.jpg Deep Woods Off image by sbreech
LOVES_BABY_SOFT_W.jpg love purfume#2 image by Roxie4nat
I love.......
looking through picture own or those of friends/family.  I'm a picture fanatic.  I also love shopping for picture frames.
I love.......
writing out my menu & grocery list.  I get some sort of crazy thrill from the organization of it all.
grocerylist.jpg grocery list image by nekozet
I love.......
looking through old Bible study workbooks.  It reminds me of where I was at that time of my life & shows me how far I've come since that time.
bible_study.gif Bible Study image by cannabuddy
I love.......
uncovering a new thing in Scripture that makes me say "ah-ha!".
scripture.jpg scripture image by swigginsx4
I love......
women's retreats & Women of Faith conferences.
WomenofFaith.gif Women of Faith image by jlyntabor
I love......
to worship.
worshiping.jpg Worship image by chateekat_bucket
I love.......
that I have found a lot of fun graphics to use for this list!  :)

Day 29 Saturday June 28

Yesterday morning, we got up & did a few things around the house before time to get ready & go to Ron & Melissa's wedding.  It was such a sweet ceremony!  Since they have both been married before & have children, the kids were all part of the ceremony.  Ron's teenaged son was his best man and Melissa's 2 girls were her bridesmaids.  As part of the ceremony, they gave the kids gifts to welcome them into a new family.  Such a sweet time to see these two grinning & happy at the altar!  What God has joined together, let no man put asunder....

After the wedding & reception, Savannah went with a girlfriend to her birthday party (they picked her up at the church to go straight there) and the friend that Samuel had spent the night with returned him to us at the church.  Larry & I took Samuel & Sarah with us to do a few hospital visits.  Part of Larry's job is visiting people in the hospitals and whenever we can, we go as a family to hug people & hold their hands & pray for them.  We try to let the kids experience that as much as possible.  We want them to see that part of being the hands & feet of Jesus is visiting the sick & injured.  They usually do pretty well standing around a hospital bed with someone they barely know, answering their questions politely & being sweet....and I know it makes the elderly people so happy to see a little child at their bedside!  We were proud of how they did.

Last night was my weekly grocery shopping trip.  I was pretty pleased with myself, too!  A week's groceries for 5 people --- $105.03!  Yahoo!  With gas & grocery prices being what they are now days, it sure helps when we have a week that we can go pretty cheap on groceries.  This coming week, we have a couple nights when we're doing something which means I don't have to cook.  That sure helps the grocery bill!

I'm home this morning (Sunday) from church because Samuel's got an upset tummy.  Hopefully it doesn't turn into something.  I think it may be that he had donuts for breakfast.

I am going to go work on something I've been wanting to post, so watch for another entry in a little while.

Friday, June 27, 2008


My friend Lisa posted this video on her blog today.  I'm passing it on because I love the visual that goes along w/ the strong lyrics.  Make sure to watch it all the way through.

Day 27 & 28 (Thurs/Fri)

Thursday was an interesting day at work.  While I had my regular class (minus a couple of kids who were absent), I also had 2 from another class (their teacher was out) and 2 of my own kids (the school age class's teacher was out, too!).  All in all, I think I still only had 9 or 10 kids all together, but it was a full house in my little classroom.  It was a good day, though because Thursday night we went to our friends' house to mow & swim again.  Samuel continued to perfect his skills & Sarah learned to hold her breath & go under water for a short time.  Despite getting frustrated with herself every time we go swimming, she's anxious for swim lessons to get here next month!  I'm glad she's excited because I'm a little nervous for her.  She's still pretty water-shy.  And while that means she's super safe in the water (she barely gets off the steps in most pools!) that also means she's not doing much but sitting on the steps.  I guess we'll see how it goes.  I hope the swimming teacher can convince her to give it a shot.  Every little bit of trying is worth something in my book!

Friday (today) was a sweet day, too.  Today was our appointed day to drive to the 1/2 way point & pick up Savannah.  (remember, she's been out of town at her friends' house since Sunday)  On the way there, we stopped at a gas station for a potty break.  Sarah got a Sprite while we were there & somehow dropped the lid in the parking lot on the way back to the van (not intentionally).  About 5 miles down the road, she started crying & was SO upset that she had littered.  (I'm telling you...this child has got the most precious, honest, sweet spirit!)  We kept reassuring her that it was no big deal, it was just an accident, someone would sweep it up, the wind would blow it away, etc, etc.  Oh no...that wasn't good enough.  She had to make it right.  We tried to convince her to pick up a piece of litter at our destination.  That wasn't good enough (although she did that, too).  So after much conversation with a very upset child who was horrified that she'd done something so "bad", we decided that we'd stop at the same gas station on the way home & see if it was still there so she could pick it up & throw it away.

Fast forward a bit.  We picked up Savannah, ate lunch with her friends, hung out & hugged everyone abouta hundred times.  Pictures were taken, good-byes were said, promises for another visit were made.  We bid farewell & were on the road.  Not so surprisingly we barely made it out of the parking lot before the sibling arguments began.  (sigh....I guess it's just part of parenting, right???  Please tell me it is....)

The trip home was pretty calm & uneventful and so, when we arrived at the gas station, everyone knew our goal---to find that Sprite lid!  When we pulled up, there was a man in the parking lot sweeping & we pointed out to Sarah that he'd probably already gotten the lid.  She still wanted to look, though!  We pulled into the SAME parking space where we'd been earlier in the day & opened the door.  And as crazy as it was there!  It made her day to get out & pick up that lid!!

I am so thankful for several things here....#1 that my precious husband was willing to stop & let her complete something that seemed so important to her.  #2 that God allowed a million cars to come & go through that parking lot without the lid getting squished & rolled out into the highway ...without it being hidden under a car when we came back ....that the man out in the parking lot had missed it & it was not swept up.  #3  that my precious thirdborn has such a soft heart that it truely breaks her heart to "sin".  Thank you, Jesus, for her sensitivity to your Spirit!  :::wiping a tear from my eye:::

Ok...gaining my composure now...

When we got home, we barely pulled into the driveway before Samuel reminded me that I needed to call Miss M.  M is the grandmother of one of Samuel's good buddies from church.  M has custody of her grandson so Samuel has spent lots of time with Miss M & loves her dearly.  On Wednesday night, M & her grandson had invited Samuel to come over this weekend for a sleepover.  I wasn't sure (then) about what our calendars looked like for the weekend, so I told her I'd call when the time arrived.  And so, since Samuel was clearly still excited about the possibility of going, I called.  It wasn't long before I left to meet Miss M & her grandson.  I'm sure the 2 boys are have loads of fun even as I type this (an hour past Samuel's usual bedtime).  They are both very sweet boys, so I know they're being good...and having a blast!

And speaking of sweetkids.... last week, Samuel & Sarah's teacher at my school (where they're going to a school-aged kids class while I work) cornered me & said "I don't know if you beat them a lot when they were kids or what....but whatever you did, it worked!  Those two kids are the sweetest kids!  They mind me, they have good manners, they're good listeners.  They're just great kids.  So whatever it was you worked!"  Ha ha!  It's always fun to hear things like that from people outside the family!  And just so ya know... we try not to beat the kids too much these days.  (big grin)

It's getting late and we have a wedding to attend tomorrow.  I can't wait!!  Both the soon to be husband & wife were members of the singles group while Larry was singles pastor.  It's so much fun to watch their relationship grow and now to see them get married!!  It'll be a great day of celebration!  Congratulations Ron & Melissa!!

...and without further adieu....I'm done!  If you made it this far, thank you for loving me enough to read my daily ramblings!  I am blessed to have you as my friend.  This is for you:

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Day 26 (still)

First off, my apologies to anyone who read the blog earlier today with all the colors.  I thought it might be neat to change things up a bit, so I editted the format a little (see my new three columns format?) and added on the link to Larry's blog (see the left column) and I changed up the colors.  But, after looking at the blog a little more tonight, I decided that it was a little too much for my eyes....and I switched colors again.  This time, I went with AOL's "sky blue" layout.  We'll see if I stick with it.  AOL offers 10 or 12 basic color choices & then you can customize & change up the colors if you want to get creative.  That's what I did earlier, but I decided the basic color choices would work better for my eyeballs.  (& hopefully for yours, too!) promised, this is installment #2.

Tonight was the 2nd quarter awards ceremony for Royal Rangers & Missionettes.  First up was the girls!  Sarah is a Prim.  She got several badges & answered several questions on stage in front of the audience & she didn't even seem nervous!  Way to go Sarah.  Here she is on stage.

After all the girls got their awards, the boys got theirs.  Samuel is a...umm...Ranger something.  I feel awful that I always forget the name of his group, but it's a little confusing.  The whole group is called Royal Rangers, but then they have the ages divided up into Ranger Kids, Discovery Rangers, and...something else.  Anyway, I can never remember which one he is.  I think he's a Discovery Ranger but I could be getting that all wrong.  Anyway, while he was on stage, he got to say a memory verse into the microphone.  My camera was getting low on batteries, so I had to turn it off between pictures to conserve power.  I caught this one as he finished speaking & turned to hand the microphone back to his teacher.

Shoot!  I wasn't quick enough to get him facing me with the microphone.  :(  So I had to try again.

Ah, well..I was close.

I was so proud of both kids.  They both received lots of new badges & they did very well on stage in front of a bunch of other kids & their parents.  Way to go, guys!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Day 26 -- Flexibility!

What a silly day we've had (so far).  It's only 2:20 as I type this, so there is more to come...look for an update later tonight.

For the past few days, the kids have been looking at the calendar & getting excited about our visit to this place.  It was on the calendar for TODAY.  But alas, our morning did not go as planned.  I was up at about 8:15.  The plan was for us to do our chores real quickly this morning and then take off & hit the museum when it opened at 10:00.  It didn't happen that way, though.

At about 9:00, Samuel went out to the backyard to feed the dog.  Because the dog food is inside our (locked) shed, he had to take my keys out with him.  When he came in, he excitedly told me about a "parrot" in the tree in the yard.  He swore that he'd seen a big parrot & told me that it had distracted him.  (I was asking what took so long since feeding the dog only takes about 5 minutes.)  He really believed that there was a parrot in the tree out in the yard.  I have no idea what he actually saw or if it existed to begin with, but he got distracted none the less. 

A few minutes later, he went running back out the door in full-blown panic mode.  I wasn't sure WHAT was going on, so I opened the front door & did what any good mother would.  I yelled "What are you doing?".  He looked over his shoulder to tell me that he didn't bring my keys back in & he was going to get them.  When he came back, he was hanging his head because he'd locked the keys inside the shed after feeding the dog.  He was so very upset & kept apologizing.  Obviously it was just an accident & well...accidents happen.  I hugged him & assured him that I've locked myself out of the house & the car a number of times.  He still felt bad about it though.

I called & emailed Larry to tell him what had happened.  He'd have to come home & unlock the shed at some point today because that set of keys also has my van keys on it and I would need those to get to church tonight.  He called later & said that he was busy and it would be after lunch before he could run home to unlock the shed.  Hmm...ok.  We decided to forget the animal museum & move onwith our day instead.  Flexibility is the key when you're a parent!  Right?

We spent the morning doing our chores.  I did Savannah's too since she's out of town.  I listed some things on eBay that I took pictures of several days ago.  The kids played some silly game (I don't know what that was!) and just generally hung out.

Samuel must've felt like he had to pay pentance for his crime because he told me later on that he wanted to "cook" lunch for everyone since his mistake had cost us our trip to the museum.  While I didn't feel like he "had to" do this, I was proud of him for offering, so I let him.  He came up with some interesting meal choices....but it was ok.  The motivation behind our yummy lunches was all that mattered.

He & I had PB&J sandwiches with some chips.  Sarah got "vino" (vienna) sausages and a ham & cheese sandwich.  When Sarah came to eat her lunch, her robotic dinosaur got involved.  At first, he was just going to sit beside her & watch her eat.  She gave him a toothpick to look like Grandpa.

But then she decided that maybe he was hungry too.

Before ya know it, the dinosaur had eaten half her lunch & chewed up several toothpicks.  Bad dinosaur!  We made him go back to posing as Grandpa & would not let him keep eating.  After all, it's probably bad for his gears to eat vienna sausages!

Not long after we had lunch, Larry got here.  Hooray!  Our key-bearing savior had arrived!  I went with him to the backyard to retrieve the keys from the locked shed while the kids had their 30 minutes of reading time.  But surprise....the keys weren't in the shed!  Uh what?  Together, he & I sorted through all the shelves in the shed, looked inside the dog's house & box of food.  We even unlocked the OTHER shed (we have 2) to see if for some reason the boy had gone in there & left them.  Nothing.

I went inside & got Samuel to come out & help us look.  He came out saying "I am 100% sure I left them on the floor in the shed."  He looked all over the place & couldn't find them either.  At this point, I was beginning to panic a little.  This is my ONLY set of keys & while we do have 1 extra house key hidden away, the van keys cost nearly $100 to me, we have had to price them before.  And then Larry spotted something across the yard, shining in the sunlight.

It was my keys.  They were laying on the ground in the grass.  Where they had been all day.  Which means that daddy didn't need to drive all the way home in the middle of the day to unlock the shed after all.

Apparently when you see mysterious tropical birds in your backyard trees, you lose all memory of what you're in the yard to do.

:::sigh::: Boys!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Day 25 Summer 2008

Another grand day in the summertime!

This morning, I went to work.  Samuel & Sarah went with me as usual.  However, before the day was over, one of Samuel's friends picked him up & took him swimming.  His mom told me that Samuel mastered the tube slide today.  She said he climbed the ladder about 5 times, each time getting nervous at the top & coming back down before he finally decided to give it a try.  The first time, he slid down, but stopped himself at the bottom of it & wriggled his way over to the side and off onto the ground without shooting out into the water.  Later, he gave it a shot, hit the water, which was about eyeball deep on him & somehow, he bobbed over to the shallower area (is shallower a word?) until he could touch.  He loved it so much that he did it over & over again afterward! 

His time with his friends provided Sarah & I time to finish up at school, drive through Sonic & pick up one of her favorite snacks (chili & cheese tater tots), and come home for a nice, peaceful quiet time.  She watched a movie from the library while I read a little & checked my email.

When Samuel got home, Larry came home and we decided that King needed a bath & a haircut.  While we've been planning to get his hair cut for a while now, we haven't had a chance to investigate places to take him nor have we had any extra money (they're pretty pricey for a larger, long-haired dog ya know?).  And so...he's now the neighborhood nerd know, the one who is embarassed because his mom cut his hair herself.  ha ha!!  It was quite difficult to pull off because King is a lazy dog...he wants to lay down when you sit down on the ground beside him (to cut his hair).  And when he wasn't laying down, he was moving.  And I'm no professional.  And all I have is a pair of scissors.  And I didn't really know what I was doing.  And my scissors weren't quite as sharp as I'd like them to be.  And his hair was still a little wet from the bath.  (can you tell I'm building up?)  His "beard/chest" area looks pretty choppy, but the rest of his hair looks good.  I'll have to keep working on his chest/neck area til I get it evened up, but I did as much as he would let me do today.  I trimmed his tail, around his legs, under his tummy, all up around his sides/back, his head, under his chin (the choppy part I was talking about).  I'd like to have a set of clippers to do his legs & a closer shave around his rear end, but for now it'll have to do.  All in's not horrible, but it could definately be better.  Oh well.....he's a DOG.  It's hair that will all grow back pretty quick anyway.  And at least for a little while, he'll be cooler!

What do ya think?  He looks like a skinnier, littler dog, doesn't he?  I would post a 'before' picture, but AOL is acting up & won't let me!  Ugh...oh well.  You get the idea.

The kids are heading to bed now & I think I'm going to try to convince Larry to watch a movie with me.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Day 24

I mentioned to Samuel & Sarah that today was Day 24 of summer & they both immediately broke into song.  A song, you ask?  Yes...a song.  For any of you without kids who aren't familiar with the shows on Disney channel, this may not make any sense.  But for those of you with children, you'll understand this.  They were singing the theme song to Phineas & Ferb.  For those of you who don't know the words, allow me to introduce you.  It's actually a really catchy, cute song. they were a little giddy today.  But I love the way they get along.  After all, they've always had each other.  Remember, Sarah's less than a year younger than Samuel, so the two of them are super close.  Neither of them remembers a time when the other wasn't around.  Although they're brother & sister and fight sometimes, really, they're the best of buddies.

This morning, Larry told me that the exterminator would be coming this afternoon at 4:00.  He ever so lovingly reminded me that the guy would be coming inside to spray in/around/behind furniture, so we needed the place to look pretty tidy.  No problem.  It was already fairly clean & straightened up, but I had a TON of laundry that I needed to do.  Like...a week's worth.  And so, I got up about 8:30, fed the kids breakfast & then started on my laundry folding mission.  I stopped to feed the kids lunch & do the dishes, but really, the rest of the day was spent doing laundry.  I actually finished up every last stitch of laundry in the house because I was on a roll.  (of course, there will be more tomorrow...there always is!)  Ok, so anyway, when I'm cleaning house, I usually stay in my PJs til I'm done because I tend to get all hot & sweaty and I'd rather sweat in my PJs & then get dressed when I'm all done (& after I've had a shower).  WELL....after all this work, I was reaching the end of my laundry when I walked through the kitchen & who did I see?  THE EXTERMINATOR!!  It was only 2:45!!!!  Since when do people coming to do work at your house arrive EARLY?  They're always late...if they show up at all & now this guy has to go and blow that out of the water by showing up over an hour early!  Yikes!  Mind you, I had not brushed my hair & I was still wearing my oh-so-lovely holey, stained up sweatpants & Tshirt that I'd slept in!  I got to the door in time to lean my head out & explain my predicament to the guy, who graciously understood & explained that it was no problem....after all, he only had to spray outside.  What?  After all that work & a slight panic attack, he only had to spray OUTSIDE.   :::Sigh:::  Don't ya hate it when that happens?

Oh well!  Within 20-30 minutes, he was done & gone.  The kids & I ran to the post office to mail a few things & then ran by the library to return some movies & get a few new ones.  Now, I must tell the past, we've recycled religously, but since moving into this house (May 2005), we have not.  We would LOVE to, but there is simply no where to PUT the recyclable stuff between trips to the recycle center.  It needs to be outside, but there really is no place to put it.  We've talked about building a little box/frame thing to put some trash cans in to use for recycling, but that requires time, money & supplies.  ANYWAY.....I told you all that so that you'd understand this part of my blog entry.  As we're leaving the library, Samuel noticed that they have a caged, fenced thing in the parking lot where people can deposit aluminum cans to be recycled.  Once a month they have a truck from the recycling center come by & pick up all the cans.  Samuel saw this thing & said "Hey mom!  LOOK!  They recycle!!".  I confirmed that, yes, they do.  He asked if we could start bringing OUR cans to the library for recycling, but I pointed out that it's mostly just soda cans & since we don't drink canned soda very often, we really don't have cans to contribute.  Of course, my brilliant child had an answer for that.  "Well, I'm going to change that.  I'm putting all of us on a diet!  A SODA diet!"  The goober.  At least we know he's creative.

After we got home, I set up the Slip & Slide for the kids to play on while I cooked supper.  I took a few pictures, so of course I'm going to share them!

At one point, I looked out & saw that Samuel had headed into the backyard for something and Sarah was waiting for him to come back.

Of course, she didn't realize he was going to come back armed!

They continued to play out there even after I turned off the water!  I swear...the slip & slide was the best $7 investment I ever made for summertime fun.  They love it!

And oh yes....remember the fish picture I told you I'd share on Saturday when Larry & Samuel went fishing?  We finally got it off Larry's phone today & here is Samuel with his FIRST fish ever!  Good job, dude!

Tomorrow, it's back to work for me.  I swear, these summer hours are fabulous.  It seems like it's a month between work days.  And the break between Thursday & almost forget that I have a job with a 5 day break every weekend.  WooHoo!  Have I mentioned that I love my job??