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Friday, April 30, 2010

$3 Home Beauty Solutions and The Pilgrimmage of My Hair

So I finally dyed my hair. Then my daughter layered it. It wasn't too traumatic. Okay, maybe a little bit. As you may remember, first I dyed it with henna last summer (heinous henna story). Then I went to a student at an academy (another crazy account involving my over active imagination). Both times ended in reprobate greys mocking me. Finally, in desperation, I bought a $3 box of brown/black dye at Walmart. I will spare you the details of this event, other than to say that there was a hole in my glove and it turned my finger black. It made my finger look like a zombie digit for a couple of days. Moonbeam pounded on the bathroom door wanting to be let in, which was a bit unnerving. After that she was quiet which was worse yet. It was also my daughters first attempt at layering. She went on youtube to figure it out. That would frighten most home beauty goers, but I, being a brave and desperate soul perservered. After her nervous plights, she was so pleased with it she layered her own hair. The color seems a bit dark, but I think I might like it. Mostly I like going by a mirror and not seeing gray hair giving me the raspberries. It was so rude that I imagine if I didn't do something quick, they were going to turn all Medusa on me.
I am working all weekend, so you will most likely see some "Working Mom Blues" posts to come. I hope you are all enjoying yours!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Light Dinner with Some Dessert (and a jaw dropping revelation on the side)

Stupendous, Inspiring and Jaw Dropping Events have recently rocked my world. Two days in a row, I've been able to hang out with other women. No, the fact that other women are willing to hang out with me occasionally is not the miraculous happening that I wanted to share, only the back drop for my story.
I had been a little "down" off and on last week. I spent it with my family, which was wonderful, but I hadn't had any girl time in a while. That's when Mist called and asked if I wanted to go to town with she and Elasta Woman. I'd never rode to town with one of them driving before and I knew it would be an adventure I wouldn't soon forget. You may remember from previous stories, Elasta Woman and Mist are both in their 20's. I am 11 and 15 years their elder, never the less, we are all good friends. Both women lived in small cabins while their husbands built their homes by hand and both just moved into their new homes in the past few weeks. Both have endured many hardships carving homes out of raw wilderness, but both have incredibly inspiring pioneer spirits with unwavering strength. Mist, who drank and bathed from a creek draws joy like water out of the well of contentment in her heart. Elasta Woman is as fiery as the wood stove she often cooked upon. The girls worked a catering job and had some money burning holes in their purses to buy stuff for the respective new homes.
The three of us were soon driving out of the forest into the city in an old Subaru manned by Elasta Woman. She forgot her driving glasses, so she borrowed a pair of mine. She explained that her car needed some repairs, but hadn't gotten it fixed yet. It all seemed more the adventure. We laughed and chatted and giggled away the morning. After Home Depot and Walmart, we dined at an incredible hole in the wall restaurant famous for its good cooking. Then we walked through the pouring rain to several specialty shops along the downtown lane. At one particular place, we were held hostage by a talkative young employee. I thought she'd never let us leave. I became quite nervous and fidgety. Mist and Elasta Woman listened patiently to all she had to say and actually appeared to care. Everything in the store was 10x the price it should have been. I couldn't imagine anybody actually buying anything there ever, so I just stood there feeling the need to scream loudly and bust out the door. It occurred to me that I am so fixated on power shopping that I miss taking time out to interact with people. The girls didn't bat an eye about spending half an hour visiting with a lonely worker. I was a little ashamed with myself.
After finally escaping, we entered this crazy expensive hip clothing store. I found out they'd spent hours here the last time they came to town. I began to feel the need to run out screaming again. Instead I sat down and watched them try on clothes. They weren't actually trying on clothes in the dressing room. They were in what used to be the dressing room in an upstairs clearance area. Mist tried on a long form fitting green skirt. I gasped disapprovingly. I could make out her curves a little too well. She looked me in the eye and disagreed in a very soft kind of way. I tried to steer her toward more tent looking attire. Then Elasta Woman tried on one of the skirts in yellow. Again, I could make out curves. Both girls have incredible figures and they looked fabulous and female. The prim and proper lady in me told them it was much too sexy. Then they told me to try on the pink one. Time stopped. It never occurred to me in a million years that I could wear a skirt like that. Not wanting to be the old fuddy duddy of the group, I entered the make shift dressing area and dawned the skirt dropping my pants after it was on. That's when the lady came upstairs and chastised us all for not using the dressing room. She ushered us down the stairs. Some how the girls were dressed and I was the culprit wearing the sexy hot pink skirt guiltily carrying along my pants with me. As I later examined myself in the dressing room mirror, I could see a curvy figure looking back at me. True, I didn't have the flat, board like stomach Elasta Woman has, but I didn't look all that bad either. I actually looked kinda cute. That's when I realized that some where along the way an old lady had taken over my wardrobe in the name of modesty and refused me the privilege of looking female. The girls weren't being immodest. I was being prudish. I bought the skirt in purple on Mist's recommendation and she bought the green in the same size.
The fact that I'd bought the same size skirt as Mist stuck with me and I began to try on some smaller sizes at the second hand stores we hit next. That's when the Stupendous, Inspiring and Jaw Dropping event happened. I discovered I'd dropped a dress size. I couldn't believe it at first. I haven't lost any weight in a long time. How could this be? But try as I would many different things, the results were all the same. Just a few years ago, in a Wal mart dressing room, I resigned to going up "one more" to a size 16. Yesterday, in a nondescript thrift store, in a quiet part of town, I comfortably put on size 8's and squeezed into 6's. Selah.
On the way home, I thanked the girls for helping me branch out. We all laughed at my disapproval of the skirt I later bought. They thanked me for helping them grow spiritually. They said they'd never heard anybody pray before like I do. They said I opened up a whole new aspect for them in prayer. They said I helped them in their spiritual walk too. I told them that I learn a lot from them every day. I am learning how to enjoy my life. I am learning how to be more balanced thanks to them. Some how, some where, part of me became a little bit too prudish and quick to judge. Something about my friends exposes it. Now that light shines there, it doesn't want to remain.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Men Work and The Chicks Relax (Deal or No Deal?!)

"Deal or No Deal?!" I asked when my son, Super Catman was told to start the dishes. "Do them now when there's a few or wait till later when there's a pile?!" "Deal!" He yells emphatically pushing down a pretend buzzer and runs into the kitchen. OK, so maybe we've watched a little too much "Deal or No Deal". Well, the free channel will end and then something else will be on.
My sister and I had a good visit on the telephono today. She promised me a nice butt if i would read the "Abs Diet for Women" book. I am quite elated about this and so I am going to try and find it at the library.
In other butt news, my husband kicked mine when we went biking the other day. It was a 7 mile ride and the first half of it was mostly up hill. Other than being sore for days, experiencing extreme exhaustion while peddling and profusely sweating, it was romantic. We did stop in a sunny spot and relaxed for a short bit before flapping like maniacs in the wind as we soared down the hills like banshees.
Other than a few slow runs and that ride, I have mostly taken Becky's advice and relaxed. We had 3 days this past week in the 70's and I took full advantage. Some of my favorite activities included:
1. Trying to take a nap on my outdoor swing. Mostly I was thwarted by Moonbeam.
2. Cooking lunch outside on the grill and eating at the picnic table.
3. Kicking all the kids outside to finish school work in the sunshine by noon each day if they weren't already finished.
4. Sun tanning on the trampoline.
5. Daily Kayaking in the sunshine (during Moonbeam's naps).
6. Making smoothies and eating them outside.
7. Yard work (again, somewhat thwarted). Moonbeam loves the outdoors. She wants to climb, run, play and explore! Turn your head and she's off down the steps, or climbing up something. She reminds me of her cousin, Kardelen, who claims to be part monkey.
8. Playing bad mitten with the kids.
Anyway, I did enjoy a wonderful week. Next week, I am planning a picnic with a pack of sisters. We have also rescheduled our "Extreme Chicks Hike" for May 22, so I'm excited about that. We added in an early breakfast at the lodge and possibly stopping by the fire mans rummage sale. Should be a lot of fun ;-) I am going to get up some motivation to make fliers for it soon. The kids are also doing an incredible job training for their run which reminds me of the last thing I wanted to write about.
Yesterday, we went to town to get the kids immunizations caught up. Of course we had to go to Walmart because we were out of everything. Art Dog only had one pair of shoes which were men's work boots. I wasn't going to let him show up to a 5K wearing them. We looked through the clearance shoe section hopefully. Some of the kids needed sandals. Some of them needed tennis shoes. I could have spent my whole pay check on footwear, so I was trying to get as much as I could for as little. Anyway, the shoes he liked best were sneakers with steel toes. Okay. They were brown Brahma's. Okay. Size 7.5. Okay. "How did his feet grow that many sizes so fast?!" I wondered. I put them in the cart and began looking at sandals for a few different kids. I saw a co-worker and we started chatting. Super Catman was telling me he preferred the blue Nerf sandals. Moonbeam began squawking. As I started pushing the cart away, I noticed something alarming that caught my eye. The Brahma's shoe name was "Rose". Suddenly some wording caught my eye "Brahma's for Her". Oh boy. Should I tell him? I figured I'd better. Surprisingly, he still wanted the shoes. Today, as he was outside "trying them out", I noticed the "steel toe" cardboard sign still resides on each one. He doesn't mind that either. Apparently he has been experimenting with dropping rocks on his feet. Boys will be boys.
Have a great weekend everybody!

Pics above include the boys fixing my vacuum cleaner, my husband installing our ceiling fan and Sock Fashion Expert relaxing in the sun.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

injuries are inconvenient!

View from my kayak the other day.....

Sock Fashion Expert on a lark, decides to "war paint her face" and take off on her motorcycle. The boys were all too glad to help her.

Moonbeam's first walk without the stroller. She thinks she's pretty big now!

Super Catman with frog eggs at the lake yesterday.

Dad and Moonbeam having some special time together.....

It's been another hum dinger of a week! On Friday, the steps revolted against me. They had been plotting revenge for my not staining them for quite some time. They are also angry about all the times I took them for granted. They said that I don't appreciate them and tend to "walk all over them" at times. At any rate, they waited for just the right timing and then tripped me. Yes, I am much too nimble and quick just to have stepped wrong. Surely it was a conspiracy on their part.
At any rate, I rolled my ankle coming off those rascals and had to hobble for a couple of days. It set back my training for the 5K in May. I wanted to pout and feel sorry for myself that first day. I was laying on the trampoline mournfully with a pillow and magazine and something said to me "Either you can lay here and be like this for 10 days or you can get up and go out kayaking". I got up, ace wrapped my ankle and hobbled off down the drive way to my kayak. I didn't even know how I'd get the thing in the water by myself, but I did. I spent an hour or two out there and kept putting my ankle overboard in the icy cold water. When I got home I was in a much better frame of mind. My husband saw me coming and he and one of the boys carried my kayak back for me. Then he drove me up the driveway so I wouldn't have to walk. I realized that even though I couldn't train for my 5K, I can work on my upper body by kayaking hard for a few days. "Slowing Down" was really what I needed to gain a little perspective, and finding things I could do helped my attitude a lot. I also have had some special times with the kids.

The Archer has been gone since Friday. He is in the middle of his structural fire fighting course in the big city. That's been a little challenging for me too. My birdies are starting to spread their wings. Tonight he called and I got to talk to him for long time. It made me feel better.
I've enjoyed some wonderful days out in the kayak and relaxing after school with the kids. Today was day 5 and I was able to run my 3 miles on it wearing a support. I am so glad its healing fast :-)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

2007 Grizzly Encounter

As I was going through wildlife stories, I found this one. I had The Archer type this experience in his own words as a school assignment that week in order to preserve it.

Hunting in Montana by The Archer (2007) Grizzly Encounter
Yesterday was the first day of hunting season. Dad and I were prepared early. We had a preset plan to cover a specific mountain. We got up, prepared, and before light we were at the hunting area. To our surprise the forest service shut a gate miles from the mountain. We had to totally change our plan. We decided to split up and cover the side of the mountain. We would meet at the top. I got to the top before Dad. It was beautiful. The entire lower area of the mountain was covered in a blanket of clouds. I started to walk off the mountain. All of a sudden a "boom" broke the silence of the mountain. I turned on my radio and found out that Dad had shot a beautiful 5x5. I went back up the mountain to Dad. We were miles up a mountain so we had no choice but to cut all the meat off right there. By that time ravens had began to fly in circles around us waiting to get to the carcass\gut pile. We had no way to pack it out so Dad took off his sweat shirt. He tied the sleeves and cut holes in the collar. Then I sewed it shut with the string off my collar. Then we skinned it right there and cut the meat off. We stuffed the meat in his sweat shirt.
A guy in Missoula area shot an elk. With his rifle next to a tree he began gutting it out. A grizzly came to get the gut pile and decided instead to eat the guy and the elk. With that and other stories we had always made a habit to look out for grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, and mountain lions when gutting on the mountain. With other experiences, it was proven that when predators hear a gun shot they associate it with a gut pile. Dad carried the meat and I carried the rifles and head. We were blood soaked and carrying all we could. It was brushy and full of downed timber so watching footing among the rocks was paramount. I suddenly caught a glimpse of movement in the corner of my eye. I turned my head to see a grizzly bear staring at us a mere 50 yards away! We quickly dropped the meat and head. I handed Dad his Contender Carbine and I drew my Ruger Super Black Hawk. The grizzly was unquestionably the biggest bear I've ever seen. It had a massive head and huge shoulders. The bear looked at us for a while as if deciding what to do and then started walking towards the carcass. We decided if it followed us or showed some kind of aggressive action we would just give it the meat. Then we got off the mountain as soon and quickly as possible while looking over our shoulders of course. Days later I returned to the carcass. The ground around the carcass was torn all up and just little pieces of bone was all that was left of the carcass. While living here in Montana I've seen many black bears, wolves, cougars, and moose while on foot, but never have I felt fear like when I was staring in the eyes of that grizzly!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Art Dog, A Really Cool Kid, MISSadventures with MISS Belly Fat

"Stop!" yelled Art Dog in a loud, commanding voice "That's Peter!" Shocked, I looked around the produce aisle trying to decipher what he was warning me about. Everything looked okay. Then he grabbed the pear I had selected out of my hand dramatically and placed another one in it. "That was Peter The Pear" he informed me matter of fact. I couldn't stop laughing once my initial shock had dissipated.
Today Art Dog mediated, or rather parented two rather unruly girls. Produce was not the only thing I'd bought in town yesterday. I'd found some M&M's on sale. I know better, but Miss Belly Fat happened to make her appearance at that moment and conned me into buying them. Her reasoning was as follows : "If you buy the plain instead of the peanut you won't eat them." I asked her how she could be so sure. She assured me that I was buying them strictly for cookies. I failed to see that her reasoning was flawed because I would want to eat the cookies. The logic at hand had convinced me, despite it's undercurrent of deceitfulness. By mid-day today, I was sneaking into them. Sock Fashion Expert promptly caught me and confiscated them. Innocently, later that day, I was about to fill the tea kettle when I discovered the M&M's. I hid them from the Sock Fashion Expert. Promptly, the Sock Fashion Expert found them. Suddenly a fight erupted. Miss Belly Fat suddenly charged the Sock Fashion Expert, knowing fully well she had a good 40 pounds on her. There was screaming, yelling and a terrible earth shattering noise shook the room. By now all the children were drawn into the kitchen by the ruckus. The earth shattering sound happened to be the bag of M&M's ripping open and flying all over the kitchen. Moonbeam became frightened by the chaotic sounds and wailed, though her mouth was soon too busy to fuss. Suddenly all the kids were eager to help us pick them up. Art Dog scolded us and took the meager leftovers into his room to "guard them" until it was time to make the cookies. The Sock Fashion Expert and I were no longer entrusted to them. Despite every one's pleas, Art Dog kept a solemn watch on them until The Sock Fashion Expert had cookie dough ready.
Art Dog also decided to come along running with The Dolphin Goddess and I today. As you know, my kids are all training for a 5k (so mom will do their dishes for a month). I showed up wearing my running shoes, wind breakers and a stop watch. He showed up wearing his old hiking boots and jeans with holes in both the knees. Despite my running garb, he showed me up, effortlessly running the 3 miles barely breaking a sweat. The Dolphin Goddess also ran the 3 miles effortlessly looking as if she was floating along rather than running. She chattered on not even sounding winded. In short, they both kicked my butt! I huffed and puffed and gulped. At one point I even thought I might hurl. Her pace is quite a bit faster than mine. In the end, they graciously slowed a bit for me. Our grueling time - 31 minutes. Dolphin Goddess suggested Art Dog try training as he showed a lot of potential. She didn't mention my athletic prowess. Purely an oversight on her part, I am sure.
Our Art Dog is quite the kid. He's a lean mean hunting machine in the fall. The kid is all muscle. He never ceases to amaze me with physical endurance. During the day, he does his school, chores and helps with the baby always wearing a smile. He's got an incredible sense of humor. He's easy going and enjoyable to be around. He's even mature enough to mentor two scrapping chicks ;-) What a kid! I'm real proud of him as you can tell. He's a really cool kid!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Horrifying Havoc of the Human Hurricane (aka Moonbeam's Haunts)

Moonbeam got into a lot of mischief today. This morning she got into my dresser and took all my clothes out of the bottom drawer. Then she stood in it and opened up a top one so she could start taking stuff out of that one too!
In the afternoon, she "helped" The Sock Fashion Expert sorting laundry. She leaves a trail of disaster every place she's been. Whatever you do, do not, I repeat do not trust her with crayons!

I tried putting her down for a nap no less than 3x. The first time, she conned the kids to get her out saying "ewww" as if she needed her diaper changed. She was quite pleased that when they discovered her scheme, they fed her a bowl of jello. Then she dumped her left over jello on the floor. Have you ever tried to clean up jello?! Its terrible. She also managed to undress herself several times throughout the course of the day and proceeded to run around the house shrieking (and streaking). At last she is now peacefully recharging so that she may later avenge the cleaning I and the children have meagerly accomplished.
To follow up, in the evening she dumped a box of powdered milk out all over the floor and ate some of it. What's a mom to do?!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Impressionable Impressions and Lack Thereof

Last week I ran 14 miles and walked about 8. I am becoming fully acquainted with suffering from these experiences. Jogging, no matter how uncoordinated and sloppy it may be, is not for the faint hearted. One must have a sense of raw determination, fortitude and possibly a deep seated desire to experience excruciating discomfort in order to earn the glorious title of "jogger". Despite my loudly proclaimed discomfort about miles covered, none are so memorable as the day that Super Catman came along. Wanting to impress me he ran ahead speedily. Once he had substantially passed me by, he would then breathe heavily and rest looking behind him with an air of nonchalance. He continued this fissad for the first 1/4 mile. After that, one of the boots he was wearing, which happened to belong to his big brother, landed smack dab in the middle of a rather large mud puddle. He hadn't gone far before he noticed it's absence. Coolly, the boy donned the over sized boot and clomped on, though having lost a portion umph along with the boot in question. I'm not sure where the boy gets these ideas, but the need to impress seems vaguely familiar.
I have never been good at impressing people or even at making impressive first impressions. Actually, I am terribly shy. As I was on my home from work the other morning, I couldn't resist but was rather compelled to stop and see The Sock Fashion Expert at her first day on the job. As you may remember she is helping Mist at the Lodge occasionally. The breakfast menu was lovely and exquisite. Fresh berries, heavenly scones and an array of hearty foods cast their aroma in my direction. Apparently my strong mothering instincts did make an impression on somebody, namely that of the Sock Fashion Expert. She had had a nightmare that I called the lodge every 1/2 hour to check on her. Perhaps that would explain the shocked and horrified look on her face when I first made my appearance. Just kidding. She made a great impression on every body. They all thought she was lovely and sweet and raved about her beautiful red tresses. She had it scooped up on the top of her head. She wore a plain black shirt and jeans underneath a camouflage print apron. Her contagious smile and vibrant blue eyes captured the hearts of every one there. All is well that ends well in today's chapter.
Above photo is our machines just before inspection. 4 men showed up including a government representative and went over them with a fine tooth comb for almost 3 hours!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Working Mom Blues and The Case of The Crass Cupcake's Cowardly Cravings

Mina was just an innocent bystander in what was about to unfold. True, she had baked the rich, peanut buttery cup cakes as a school assignment, but she could never have fathomed that one would stoop to such desperation.........
The shift seemed pretty uneventful at first, that is until Mina offered me one of her succulent peanut butter delights. It was like biting into peanut buttery heaven. Fluffy peanut butter flavored cake topped with thick fluffy rich peanut butter frosting and sprinkled with Reece's Pieces. That one delicious experience left me with a blissfull high that could not easily be forgotten.
Hours later in the break room, I happened to be using the copy machine. "Come here often?" I heard the alluring rich voice call. I looked over and there he was, the last of his kind, sitting temptingly in a nice container. I thought to reach out to him at first, but propriety held me back. "I'm a one cup cake kind of girl" I told him, hurriedly leaving, but we both knew my insatiable lust for peanut butter would lead me back to him.
I made an "accidental trip" by him again. "I'd like to be a piece of your back side" he called out crassly. Shocked, but not all that displeased, I hurriedly rushed out. It may have been that a co-worker was in there and I didn't know what she would think.
"On the way" to or from some where, I passed by him again. This time I could tell he had me in his clutches. I was a slave to his sugary magnetism. As I entered the break room, he whispered in a deep throaty voice "I'm your love handle baby". As if compelled by some unknown force, I hypnotically stepped toward him, lost in his promises of ecstasy. Just as I was about to unveil the clear container's cover, a ray of light beamed in. A bright light burst through the shady room and his spell was momentarily interrupted. That brief moment of clarity was all my mind needed to see the truth. The lust of my flesh had taken over and I was being controlled by it, lead like a lamb to the slaughter. As I came to my senses, he crooned "it's o.k., I'm in the big plan" I knew deep down it was a lie, but I wanted to go along with it anyway. "C'mon, it's been 10 hours since your last one" he reasoned sweetly. I pulled myself away, not liking his mesmerising power over me.
After that, a little bit of fortitude took root and I knew I might possibly elude him. Oh he kept trying, and believe me I was tempted, but I liked the feeling of empowerment self control gave me better. As I said "good bye" to my co-workers that morning, I reiterated to Mina what delicious temptation her cupcakes were. "That last one was all I thought about for the past couple hours". "I'll have to get you the recipe" she smiled, and offered him up to me one last time. "No", I said, "I've made it this long with out him, I can't eat him now". She looked at me peculiarly. "I'm a one cupcake kind of girl" I whispered under my breath as I ambled out into the fresh morning air.

Mutant Kitty Boy's Pooey Potatoes

The other day, as I was putting the boys to bed, they were birthing stuffed cats. Both of them had them under their shirts. They were yelling loudly, as if in labor. After birthing multiple kittens a piece, the "babies" hogged up their bed space. Then the would be off spring pushed the innocent boys out of their beds. This was all quite a show, and Moonbeam got in on the act running around the room yelling excitedly. Perhaps she was pleased to be becoming "an aunt".
I'm not sure what bizarre twist of imagination birthed this idea, but I wonder if it had to do with what happened the other day. We had arrived at Bible Study and Super Catman announced to the other children that he was "part cat". When the kids scoffed, he began hissing and scratching his "paws" in the air. This too was quite a bit bizarre, but not all that unusual. I never know what my boys will come up with next.
Art Dog also added fuel to the fire when writing and illustrating a reading primer for Super Catman. Super Catman, hero of the story, was once a normal boy with a cat. At the beginning of the story, the normal little boy's cat poops in his potato patch. As the boy is eating potatoes from his garden, he notices they taste strange. Just then a pack of wolves threatens the boy. He instantly turns part cat and picks a fight with the leader. Then he chases and almost eats a mouse which he gives to his cat. Later on, the mutant boy devotes his life to fighting crime. All from his cat pooping in his potato patch - go figure that's some kinda doo doo. Consequently, I have warned Super Catman NOT to play with or eat any cat poo. He has promised to restrain himself.
I suppose that I should be glad my boys have such an active imagination. The fact that I'm blogging about it shows I am (most of the time). I suppose I'd rather deal with birthing kittens at bed time than real issues most kids face today. What did you pretend to do between the ages of 7-12?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

New Focus for The Bobble Headed Cinderella Chick (aka me)

Pleasures and a little disappointment mingled its way into my weekend. On Thursday, the boys and I hiked a few miles into the Persnickety Pika Lake trail. We wanted to check out the trail for my "Extreme Chicks Hike". The hike was wonderful, the weather mild, and memory with the boys, priceless. When I got home, I called Elasta Woman to discuss the hike. I wasn't expecting to hear foreboding news. She was thinking we should consider cancelling it. We were supposed to have bad weather. I was really really disappointed. I stubbornly wanted to do it anyway, but I decided to listen to some voices of reason. After spending some time in my closet pouting (and praying), talking to some more friends and to my husband, we cancelled (postponed) the hike. Originally 14 women had planned to go and several of them were already backing out due to weather and other plans. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that taking that many women that far into the wilderness was a responsibility and a privilege. We could have done it, the weather wasn't that bad today, but it wouldn't have been all that much fun. It would be a lot more fun to do on a sunny warm day.
My friend Mist is cooking at the local lodge now, and she's making quite the name for herself. Last night, my husband took me out there for dinner. Oh was it an incredible night. The Sock Fashion Expert insisted on being my personal fashion consultant. She went through my drawers and closet and picked out a haute ensemble. Then she coordinated jewelry, and even gave me a pair of earrings she'd recently crafted. Then she styled my hair. I transitioned from frumpy to Cinderella in no time. The atmosphere at the lodge was extremely rich. A large table of people greeted us as we made our way over to say "hello". Some we knew, others we just knew of. Mist grilled us delicious, juicy steaks. There was an elegant romaine salad with strawberries, avocado and the most delicious, home made tangy dressing I've ever eaten. The fresh bread tasted like it came from a well to do bakery. There was a scrumptious fettuccine as well. The cheese cake with strawberry sauce was out of this world decadent. Apparently, I'm not the only one who was impressed with her cooking. The new owner of the Mercantile was there and asked her to cook dinner for his grand opening this month. We are so happy for her. What an exciting opportunity! That's not all. Cow girl, (my kayak buddie), Mist's kitchen/waitress helper has a job interview in town. When Cow girl starts working in her desired field, Mist has asked our very own Sock Fashion Expert to be her special helper! The evening was incredible, not just because of the food. My date was charming, handsome and such a gentleman. It reminded me of some of our first dates back when we were in high school. Uhh... I think I'd better not elaborate any further.
As for my change of focus, well I spent 10 weeks working on the "perfect 10" plan. I've done a lot of focusing on weight loss, which is good. I think I'd like to focus a little differently these next 6 weeks. I still want to lose weight, but I've decided my focus will be on training for a run (my first ever). I am hoping the by product will be some pound and inch loss though ;-) Something interesting I've been seeing is the impact that I have on people around me, especially kids. After I started running more, I invited some of my kids to come. Only one wanted to actually run with me - that was Art Dog. He did great. Just last week Sock Fashion Expert came in with a bright red face. She informed me she'd jogged 2 miles. Today she did three. The other day, Super Catman insisted on running with me. We did a little over a mile together. He ran ahead and rested several times, but did great. Yesterday, I was minding my own business, out running, and guess who I saw on the road jogging with an ipod?! It was Kiree the Neighbor Girl! She was out there looking quite athletic wearing the red Columbia jacket I'd given her. The whole thing just makes me realize that people do watch me, and whether or not I think I'm influencing anybody, I am. I told the kids that if any of them run this 5K with me (6 weeks from now) I will do their dishes for a month. I am fearful all of them will want to do it - lol! Well, its incentive, and could develop a healthy habit for them that will last a life time. Its also motivation for me. I'm going to try and run 10 miles/week minimum and start logging my time and distance. That's 60 miles minimum training before my 5K. Uhh.... I hope I haven't bitten off more than I can chew. Well if I have, I'd better suck it up and buy some paper plates ;-)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Celebrating Dad

Each kid wrote out some special memories to share with thier Dad. Here's him reading one.
My Favorite Times with Dad - By The Sock Fashion Expert
My favorite times with Dad are always when we just sit down talking about something that doesn't really matter. Like for instance, when we just talk about cookies and how neither of us like them with too many chocolate chips. Or when we just talk about a book or movie we just read/watched. Fishing was always another fun thing to do with Dad. He always finds a worm to split with me or a good spot for me to cast. Dad always has some funny joke to crack that Mom doesn't think is very funny. He has an odd sense of humor that for some reason makes me laugh! I remember when he used to threaten to give Kaleb or I shaving cream kisses. Yep, those are some of my favorite times with Dad.
Happy Birthday Dad (Memories) - By Art Dog
Dear Dad, How is your day so far? Thank you for being such a great Dad. We need to go to Persnnickety Pika Lake again. It was fun. I remember being the first one out and I caught a giant. By the end of the day you had a caught a bigger one. Thank you also for taking me shooting. I love going ground squirrel shooting with you. Thank you for the XR 70, over one thousand dollar motorcycle. I ride it allot and you pay for gas and oil. Everyday I cost you dollars. My favorite things to do with you are shoot, hike, fish, and gun shows. My favorite thing to do is not math but thank you for it anyway.
My Favorite Things to Do with Dad - Super Catman
Walking on a Walk. Motorcycle ride together. Going on car rides. You take me hunting squirrels. Me - I wouldn't be here without you!
*Since one of my favorite memories is listening to him read Patrick Mcmannus stories to us, I ordered him three new books we didn't have. Some times when we are out around a camp fire, or just sitting around the living room, he reads them to us. We all love that and we love listening to him laugh as he's reading!