Friday, February 25, 2011

Tweenie-bopper

I am eleven in my soul. I am. I love bubble-gum music. The kind that has no musical depth, and that cause people to roll their eyes at me when I rock out.

I stayed up WAY too late last night. The undesired by product of working out too late. I watched the tail end of Jay Leno that resulted in a surprise. Hanson is back! You remember, "MMmmmmmBop". Which, I confess to enjoying. Yeah, I have their CD, and I bought it about 5 years ago...5 years after they were SO not cool! Because I missed them and enjoyed them. I watched a bio on Hanson a while back (waaay back) and they are really talented. When asked to sing something, they chose to sing some 1960's song, with a complex harmony, and not one of their own...And I was struck that that is one of the reasons I like them. I LOVE the bubble-gum music of the 60's. Hanson is the same happy music with a head bopping beat and fluffy happy lyrics. "Dizzy" is one of my all-time favorite songs. It makes me happy, always, without fail. It has virtually no message, but it is just pure fun. "Mmmbop" is worthless, but it is like sunshine in a music clip. I can smell hot pavement and a breeze when I hear it. I still like it. You can take me out and stone me later.

Hanson is back, and I am happy to say they, as men with families, still sound fun and like summer. HERE is what I saw last night, and yes, I'll be buying their CD.

While I am confessing to loving embarassing "tweenie-bopperness", I also like High School Musical, Gidget, and will watch iCarly without my kids. SO THERE!

I have enough real life in my real life. I don't care if movies and books are not realistic. I like sunshine. I like happily-ever-afters. It's my drug. It could be worse.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Scarecrow Fun

There is a property on my way to the kids' school that has gallavanting scarecrows. No lie.

I use the term scarecrow lightly. They have white heads and their outfits change often, and they appear to have wire bodies. I cannot stress the magic of these scarecrows enough. I have not once seen them posed. I have never seen anyone near them. They have taken on lives of their own.

They skip through the flowers and roses, bending to smell them. They wear capes and bonnets, overalls and suits. They dance around a pot of gold at St. Patrick's Day. They sing around the tree at Christmas. One was proposed to this Valentine's Day. She's run off and he looks disgruntled, so I'm thinking perhaps she's turned him down.

They will literally be moved from their morning positions by the evening some days. Sometimes only one will have changed...

I will probably die in the ditch from watching these scarecrows and I solemnly promise to write a thank you note to the property owners before the end of this year. I treasure the magic...it makes me feel 5.

Rat 2-23-11

So I've gained 2 pounds this round. Like in the last 3 days. Stink. I considered not even ratting myself out this time, but since that is the whole point...

*sigh*

Well, I've been working out consistently. I've been maintaining the appropriate food choices. My pants are still fitting the same way, so the weight hasn't addressed my biggest concerns...The only change is this: diet drinks. I'm dead serious. I went on a food bender at the Brad Paisley concert, and then went back to being good...but since I had all that nice yummy food and drinks, I started fantasizing about sugar and cokes and cakes and...well, you get the picture... So I bought some diet tea. Figured no calories, no harm, no foul. Hmmmm. Maybe not.

So, I am adding this, no diet drinks...so there. We'll see if this is the problem.

I sent a tracing of my foot to an in-line skate store to fit me for my new skates. I have chosen a type of K2 skate, and I'm really excited. I've been reading reviews and harrassing major inline producers, so I think this will be good. I'll let you know when my purchase goes through, and how happy I am...I am officially planning to go for the A2A marathon, but probably the shortest distance (38 miles)...this time... I am seriously exxcited!!!

Sleeping? Eh, about 50/50 at this point. I am trying to wrestle my self into bed so I can try and get up early to workout so I shower BEFORE 9 o'clock at night...a side-effect of working out being pushed back and back and...well, trying to fix that one!

Food? No new stuff this week...I know, naughty me. But low on food and NO desire to go to the store...Actually, I take that back, pierogies are surprisingly low in calories...and so that was subbed in for ravioli a few times this week, and Elise actually liked it! Amelia made a big production of gagging...can't win them all, huh?

Computer? Um, back to old habits...started to read to ditch the computer...yeah, now having a hard time putting down the stinkin' books and be responsible...BUT I've read some good ones lately...so, sorta successful this time...the computer addition is being replaced by my old book one... :)

Blogging is working out well...as a matter of fact, if you follow me here and not at Just a Little Bit Downsy, then, do me a personal favor and go HERE to vote for me...I have actually been blessed by friends and supporters and am a finalist for a special needs blog Readers Award. You can vote once a day until March 8. Thanks!!

Thanks for making me honest and checking in on me...See you with hopefully better results in 2 weeks!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentines of the Magi

This year my valentines exchange with my beloved was funny enough that I had to share.

We decided back in November, I think, to go to see Brad Paisley in concert, the week of Valentine's Day. So we went with friends, and it was fabulous! A phenomenal concert, really, quite a show! And we really enjoyed it, but since we did something so spectacular, we decided to exchange lower profile gifts.

I went out and bought a George Washington biography that Ethan had hinted at all Christmas season. But I could not get in time for Christmas...so as soon as the kids got back in school I ran out and got it. Score me! I was SO excited to see his happiness! He would be shocked and happy that I actually remembered!

No lie to you, he came home with it last Saturday. I was SO disappointed!!! I mean my thoat even got a lump in it...and I comtemplated keeping my mouth shut, but ended up chirping "happy valentine's day" when he showed it to me...and I told him that that was his gift, so enjoy it, because I wasn't going to be able to come up with another "good one" in time...so did he want to keep it, or should I take it and give it back to him on the 14th? He told me what a great job I did and that he'd like to start reading it...fine. whatever.

I NEVER buy CDs! Really, very rarely...I'll compulsively buy 1 or 2 a year and they'll ususally be for the kids or Ethan...

But in a fit of tweenagerishness (and I'm sure that's probably a real word), I bought Taylor Swift's new CD, and came home with it, Tuesday, I think...

It was playing when Ethan walked in the door from work...and he perked up his ear and asked if it was the radio...and I confessed that I had bought it that day...and he said, "happy valentine's day"...whaa? Yeah, that is what he bought for ME back in January for Valentine's.

So, while there was no selling of hair or watches, it smacks a bit of the Gift of the Magi story by O Henry...But, somehow it is really sweet how it happened to both of us this year. We have loved each other long enough to know each other that well...and it makes even the frustrating special. :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Evil Genius

Gabriel talked right on time for his age. He used big words early, big surprise there being I'm his mama!

Elise was delayed, because of her health and Downs.

Amelia was delayed, because her playmate was Elise. She was referred to the local early intervention program...I never took her, because I was confident that she would get caught up. Now she uses million dollar words and never stops talking. People think she is older because of the information that falls out of her mouth.

Charlotte is not really talking. She has phrases that she uses in a pinch, but she doesn't really talk. I am betting big money that on her 2 year-old well child visit, the pediatrician will refer her, too.

I think she isn't talking because she doesn't want to, not because she can't. She is a mover and a shaker. She doesn't talk because it will take less time for her to just go and get what she wants, rather than take the time to ask anyone.

Lately, she has started playing with her sisters. They play house a lot. Not surprisingly, Charlotte is usually "the baby". But she doesn't just stand there, she actively pretends to be a baby. She gets in the doll cradle and flaps her hands and babbles, which she has NEVER done before. I find it wickedly funny that the baby that doesn't talk, pretends to be a baby who doesn't talk. She sticks out her tongue, and says "bah, bah, bah". It's truely hysterical! But it makes me really wonder if she is calculating. Does she choose not to talk, so she can do as she likes?

She has never babbled. She will NEVER repeat after you, anything! She does not "do" baby talk unless she is playing that she is a baby. But she understands everything! She is an "old soul" kind of kid. Her eyes know so much more than she should. She "gets" people and laughs over jokes she shouldn't understand. I am convinced that when she does decide to talk, it will be in not only complete sentences, but in complete paragraphs and ideas.

So, thanks to this crazy little girl, I am practicing letting my eyes glaze over and pretending to listen, and perfecting "yeah, yeah, sure" kind of answers...for when we go to the pediatrician for her 2 year-old check-up. Just because she isn't talking doesn't mean she can't, I think she may just be just an Evil Genius, she just plays that she is a baby....yeah, yeah, that's it!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Rat 2-7-11

I have mixed feeling about this Rat. On one hand, it is not the story of success I was hoping to put down like 2 weeks ago...on the other hand, I had strep 2 weeks ago, so I did not work out AT ALL while I had strep. I ate okay, but because I felt so bad, I ate what I wanted...But after I started feeling better when the antibiotics kicked in, I got back on the program.
So, I lost 1 measly little pound. However, I did that in a week, so essentially, I am still on track. Total weight loss at this point? 3 pounds. Still nice to post. :)

I didn't work out while I could not swallow, but I worked out 5 days of this last week. I did Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred mixed with P90X and the recumbant exercise bike.

I have eaten well, and allowed myself enough stuff I like that I am not feeling too sorry for myself...as a matter of fact, I have found that I really like quinoa and some of the other things that I am replacing are not half bad. Fish is awesome and the Fish Rub from Emeril is YUMmy! A VERY well spent $3!!

A friend was gracious enough to share www.myfitnesspal.com. It is a FREE online community that does the exercise log and calorie log, but allows you to join with a friend (or 5) and it rats you out to your friend on whether you worked out, logged your food, lost weight, etc. when you log-in. I wish it had all the yummy recipes that Jillian gives, but, still, for free....

For the SuperBowl, I used this yummy recipe to keep me out of trouble! I did add a couple of healthy glugs of vinegar, but it was DELICIOUS!!! I stayed out of all the bad snacks and didn't feel abused in the least!

Shrimpo de Gallo
by The Pioneer Woman
Ingredients:
1 pound Cooked Shrimp (tails Removed), Chopped
½ whole Red Onion, Diced Finely
½ cups Green Or Black Olives, Chopped
2 whole Tomatoes, Diced
2 whole Fresh Jalapeno Peppers, Minced
2 whole Avocados, Chopped
2 whole Limes, Juiced
Kosher Salt To Taste
2 cups Cilantro, Chopped

Preparation Instructions:
Combine shrimp, red onion, olives, tomatoes, and jalapenos in a large bowl. Add lime juice to taste, then a dash of kosher salt. Add cilantro. Stir gently with a spoon, then taste on a tortilla chip so you’ll have an accurate gauge of the salt content. Add more salt and/or lemon juice if needed.
Chill until serving. Note that the avocado will brown if too much time passes, so if you want to make this ahead of time, leave out the avocado until just before serving.
Serve with tortilla chips!

Also, I made this soup...the kids won't touch it, but I loved it!!

Chicken and White Bean Soup
this was one that came from Jillian Michaels' newsletter
Ingredients:
2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
28 ounces reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups water
15 ounces cannellini beans, rinsed
2 pounds precooked skinless, boneless chicken, shredded (approximately 4 cups)
Preparation:
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring often, until soft, about 3 minutes.
Stir in sage and continue cooking until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth and water, increase heat to high, cover and bring to a boil.
Add beans and chicken and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Serve hot.
Makes 6 servings.

Since I didn't have sage, I left it out, and used dry minced onions, since I cannot bear onions...and it was still great! So, there you go...

Elise and Amelia and the TV:
I boxed up their entire room of toys and put it in storage about a week and 1/2 ago. I decided that they would each get one toy and it would get rotated when they got bored with it. Amelia got her Barbie stash and Elise got her horses. I also left their books in canvas bins. They are enjoying audio books on tape, we have The Secret Garden, dramatized by Focus on the Family, and Little House in the Big Woods, and they play while the audio books play. It's been a really good option!! I am thrilled. I am also thrilled that their room is not as a mess and they seem to be playing better with their toys. They are also willing to clean up their own toys because it is not so overwhelming. I am supremely pleased by the results of that brain-child!

I am also planning to make up chore charts this week. I'll let you know how that goes.

Gabriel started Lacrosse this week, and is loving it. The more protein-focused meals are good for him, too. I cleaned his room for a fresh start and am dropping the axe on him, too. I do not have to be the maid service...it makes me nuts, and is a disservice to the kids!

Sleeping:
I went to bed early while I was sick and last night, but the rest of the week it was a sad, sad tale...

Computer:
I am doing well staying off the computer when Ethan is around (and not on the computer), and it's been nice...but have my old problem returning, when I'm reading a book, I struggle with putting it DOWN during the day...but it's been nice anyway...

So...there you have it...I hope that I have more success to share in two weeks, but for now, I am very pleased with the changes being made. It's going well! :)

Thanks for letting me rat myself out! :)