Friday, June 28, 2013

My very own personal Scorpion story!

There is something I absolutely hate about Texas.
The Scorpions!
I once had one in my hair..
Before I tell you the story, I'll show you what scorpions in Austin, Texas look like.
Yep, these are the nasty little critters. This is exactly the kind I had in my hair!

I had recently moved to Austin from San Antonio Texas and I was looking for a job in the Austin school district. I had a job interview lined up but the night before I decided it was spring cleaning time... You know how us women do. We get idea's in our heads... So I started cleaning the walls, with bleach water. As I'm wiping walls Hannah yells "A SCORPION MOM A SCORPION!!" There was a scorpion on the floor! In the middle of the bedroom!! I called my 16 year old "Macho, Hunting, Cowboy" son of mine to take care of it. And he did.

Anyway, the next day at my interview I was sitting and waiting to be called back and I felt something on my chest, but I thought it was my hair. After a bit they called me into the office and after a couple of minutes someone knocked on the door and asked one of the women interviewing me to step out. About 10 seconds later both women returned into the room and said to me "Ma'am there is a bug in your hair and it's not the good kind" (And I was thinking "There's such a thing as a good bug?"), I immediately knew there was a scorpion in my hair! I said to the ladies "GET IT OUT OF MY HAIR" As I froze silently stiff. At which time one of them said "We have to kill it first", I said "NO YOU DON'T, JUST GET A PIECE OF PAPER AND KNOCK IT OUT OF MY HAIR!!!"... There was still a lady behind the desk watching in awe. So one lady grabbed papers and the woman that had walked by grabbed a trash can, they proceeded to knock it out of my hair, into the trash can.

I was not stung, but I will tell you I had the willies for days after...
The women ran out of the room with the scorpion, showing others, and I didn't get THAT job, but it's all good, because I got an even better one! Or at least I think it's better.

And so that is my scorpion story!
Yee-Haw Texas!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Adding lace to jean skirts.

Hannah is 8 yet still fits into some of her size 6 clothes because she takes a slim size. This skirt is a size 5!! It had gotten wayyyy too short so I added lace.
I don't own nor know how how to use a sewing machine, so this is hand sewn.
It came out so cute and she gets another summer wear out of it!!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

What we do EVERY day!

We really do go swimming every day.
Today is was 99 degrees Fahrenheit in Austin Texas! That's 37 Celsius for my English friends!
I've started doing laps as my summer "melt fat" plan.
I was really out of shape when I started, but I'm up to 24 laps. Just over 70 laps is a mile. By the end of summer I will do a mile! I don't know if I have lost weight, I'm not real big on weighing myself, but I do feel as if I'm starting to firm up. I prefer to use my clothing as a judge to how my weight is doing. I will weigh myself in a couple more weeks though.
The plus + plus side? The children love swimming as well! Hannah and Andy are turning into little fish! And the last couple of days I've brought my niece, she's a lovely girl;, she's the one on the left, I think she will start coming almost every day with us, she's having so much fun and my brother and sister in law don't mind as she's having a lot of fun with Aunt Tammy :)

Here are the little lovelies...
Since we are at the pool for about 3 hours a day I have to have something to do after my laps... So I always have my British smut on hand... Now Now... Don't judge me!! I honestly don't read these (cross my heart), but I do like the puzzles in them, it keeps me up on my British lingo as well :) I also bring my Prima and Essentials magazines. Few things are better than catching up on summer reading.
In Texas you have to have a lot of water... especially if you're outdoors. I usually freeze some water for us the night before and it quickly turns to water in this heat!
The kids kick off their flip flops and jump right in!

I try to be a positive person, actually it comes quite natural for me, I do see the good in everything. But... BUT, it's so hard for me to be positive about the grass in Texas, there are a couple of things I HATE about Texas, I hate the scorpions and I hate the grass! You can't walk in this grass, it hurts your feet, and because it's so hot, our grass dies off quickly and is brown in the summer, unless of course you water it, which isn't always allowed during droughts.
This grass... NO bueno!

My kids get a lot more cooked breakfasts during the summer with me having summers off... This is one of their favorites. I always add vanilla and cinnamon to my pancakes and they are delicious!

Happy Summer time!

Friday, June 21, 2013

End Of School Back Pack Clean out! Reduce Recycle and Reuse!!

Not only did my kids bring home a back pack full of "stuff" each, but they also brought a big carry bag home as well.
Note books full of work, folders full of work, half used workbooks, pens, pencils, erasers, plastic bags, glue... Melted chocolate (Andy swears he doesn't know how that got in there!)...
I pride myself on being a "Recycler", but the more I think about it and the more I read and learn, I'm actually not doing nearly as much as I should be, nor have I been recycling properly.

My attitude before was "Eh... It's plastic, so it much be recyclable", I've since learned that if you throw too much garbage in with your recycled goods, they don't get recycled at all, they get thrown away. Then there would be no point in recycling to start with!! Might as well throw that plastic away if the recycle people are just going to ditch it!! GASP!

So I've been making sure EVERYTHING I put in my recycle can is actually able to be recycled!

Pens can't go in a recycle can.
So what do we do with them? 
I already knew about one AWESOME place.... and it's called Terracycle, Terracycle take wrappers and make new products like pencil bags, purses and all sorts of things. GREAT NEWS... Terracycle is in the United Kingdom as well! There isn't as much offered yet, but you can recycle things and if you do, you could earn 1,000 pounds towards a charity of your choice! You can find the United Kingdom site here... Terracycle UK.
One other place that you can recycle your pens? How about sending them to an Artist in California? He will use your pens for art work! You can find the Pen Guy Here.

If the notebook is full of my child's work, especially journaling or stories... I keep them. I have a box of notebooks from all 5 of my children, one day I will return the notebooks to them, as my mom did for me, I loved looking back on my work from when I was a little girl. But before I pack the notebooks up I take out all of the blank paper. My kid ALWAYS need paper... For homework especially. If you decide that you aren't keeping the notebook, you should remove the paper from the wire before recycling.
I keep all of the paper stored, and yes... I hate those little bits of paper that get everywhere, but I collect all of the paper and then deal with the "bits"... Oh the things we have to do for our planet :)
I can't keep every single paper that every one of my children ever do. But I do keep a lot of them. I keep all art work and I keep one folder per school year per child.... I always label any art work because it's not usually in a folder. I have 5 kids, I've saved papers for 18 years; if I don't label papers I forget which child did what!! Unfinished papers I save for the kids to work on during the summer. Yes... I'm one of those cruel moms that make their kids read and do math in the summer :) Any papers that I don't want or save... Paper is the easiest thing there is to recycle!
When labeling work, I only label the back with my child's name, school year and grade.
One folder each, per child, per year. It's hard, but I pick the best of their work, or the most precious of their work.

Well... There isn't a reason to recycle a pencil is there? If your kids are like my kids, they will find any excuse they can to get a fresh new pencil, I mean... What's better than a perfect pencil? But a new pencil can be brand new again with a new eraser on top ... So why throw them away? Keep them! Being a Teaching Assistant means almost every student I work with says "I need a pencil"... Aye Aye Aye... Pencils are like gold to me!
Plastic bags are one of those things that should never be thrown in a recycle bin. The bags can get caught in the machines that recycle. I'm sure I don't even have to go into how horrific plastic bags are for our planet. Plastic does NOT go away. It can break down into tiny pieces but it never ... ever... goes away. Most paper products are biodegradable. Plastic... NO. Nothing good about it. The best place to recycle plastic bags or stretchy plastic? Your local supermarket. Most of them have collection bins.

How can a mom not love papers like these?? :)
My heart is happy!!

Monday, June 10, 2013

My Joshua

Blogs are our own personal journey and we can come and go as we please.
There are no rules.
Blogs are for speaking the mind, renewing of the mind, for friendship and for celebrating life.

One of my reasons for blogging is to capture life so that I can share it with my friends and family that are afar. My son Joshua is leaving for the Middle East soon and I hope to be able to keep him up to date by blogging. By sharing my life with him. I miss him already and he's not even gone yet!

I saw Joshua this weekend, it had been since Christmas that I saw him, but he works 12 hour shifts and though his base is only 5 hours away, I also work full time and have the children at home to think about. It was so so so so nice seeing him this weekend, and his lovely wife of course. But it brought a lot of pain as well... and here I thought I was okay that he left home!!! It's so hard to let go of our children when they leave home. I will say especially boys, because boys... well you know that saying...

"A son is a son until he finds a wife,
A daughter is a daughter the rest of her life".

Isn't that the truth? When my oldest 2 found girls, there was no more need for mom. At all! Sigh.
Don't get me wrong, I'm so happy for both of my boys, as long as they are happy in love, then I am happy for them, and I enjoy every moment I can with them.

Here I am just whining and complaining when I still have 3 kids at home!! I say it doesn't matter if you have a dozen kids... they all hold such a very special place in your heart. No one can replace the love you have for a child. Each child is so precious and a gift from God. God only lets us borrow our children, they aren't ours to keep.

I am so proud of my Military son. He works hard, he supports his wife and he defends our Country. He's the whole package that kid! And he's only 20.

Okay enough doting on my Joshua. It will go straight to his head anyway... :)

When Joshua leaves for the Middle East next month, he will miss his first wedding anniversary, Thanksgiving, Christmas and his 21st birthday. I told him we would have a huge party for him when he gets back!

Wasn't he a gorgeous baby?
Sigh... He's 6'5" now!
Once I start blogging again, I'm always sorry I left.
But I had many things to consider and think about.
Don't we all?
Sometimes we need to reflect in the quiet...
I can't wait to get absorbed in my friends blogs again...