Tuesday, January 24, 2012


It's no secret that William struggles with his homework. Or is it me? I have no idea. After talking to everyone on God's green earth about this issue, we've decided it's not a lack of skill, but a lack of will.
History has proven that rewards are not great motivators for William.

Until now?

He's been begging to go to Taekwondo.

He met all the requirements last week, and last night was his first lesson.

To say he loved it would be a complete understatement.

The sheer joy on his face, and delight in his voice melted my heart!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Beauty and the Beast

When I first saw the previews for this movie, I knew Isabelle would love it.

It seems so funny to me that she has not seen it before~ Elizabeth and William loved all the great classic Disney movies: "The Lion King", "Jungle Book", "Cinderella", "The Little Mermaid".  "Gnomeo and Juliet" and "Despicable Me" are the current favs in our house - this week.

Yesterday we decided to have a little girl time and headed to the movies. Elizabeth and her/our friend Tal decided to they were to "grown up" for "Beauty and the Beast" and opted to see "Joyful Noise" instead.

Just as I imagined, she loved it.  Looked mighty cute watching it too!

Isabelle and Mommy afterwards.

And yes, that is the "special outfit" she chose to wear.
Who am I to pass judgment on her outfit choice? She may have been wearing a denim jumper with a striped shirt and stripe tights. Different color palettes but both horizontal.  You may think the tiara topped off the outfit, but I'm pretty sure it was the gym shoes.
I was wearing gym shoes too. The very same gym shoes I wore to work last week. *gasp* Don't tell Clinton & Stacy.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


The other morning while I was getting ready for work, Isabelle came into my bathroom to brush her teeth. Chatting about regular school morning stuff-

Where is your coat? Did you eat your breakfast? Did you find your shoes?

I look down and see this:

Lip gloss.

What's next? Mascara? Eyeliner? Cigarettes?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


All of our kids were asleep or in bed by 8:30pm tonight.

After the morning we had, it was a necessary blessing.

With a little extra sleep, I can only hope that tomorrow morning we'll get out of the house with out the usual screaming and gnashing of teeth.

If I'm lucky.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

A Long Over-due Weekend Away

The weekend before my computer took her little vacation, Ryan and I headed to our favorite weekend get-away spot- New Buffalo, Michigan.

"Our" bed and breakfast- the Duneland Beach Inn- had undergone some major remodeling since we had been there last.  We had fun checking out the new improvements (glass shower and breakfast nook) and enjoying our old favorites (bar and restaurant).
We arrived Friday night, and after a quick dip in the hot tub, we crashed.

Saturday we were up early, and headed into town for a big relaxing breakfast. Belgian waffles are my favorite. After a nap we enjoyed a massage, lunch, and another nap!

I really wanted to catch the sunset on Lake Michigan-

We were a bit late...

but we got to see Chicago instead! Of all the times we've been there, we've never been able to see the city.

I was so excited I got a "close up"!

We had a wonderful dinner at the Bed & Breakfast Saturday night- horseradish mashed potatoes? Yes please!

After sleeping in Sunday morning (over 12 hours of un-interrupted sleep!) We took a long walk along the lake, and the slow way home!

A fabulous weekend of nothing but relaxing- oh, how we needed that!

A very special "Thank YOU!" to Zach and Amber for making sure the kids didn't burn down the house!

Monday, January 16, 2012


She's back!

Apparently she just needed a little trip to the spa.

After wiping her down and cleaning her out- she works like a charm!

She's incredibly delighted with her clean desk. Shines like a new penny.

...and I sprung for the external hard drive.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Apple Bourbon French Toast

Scouring the Internet for a yummy day-after-Thanksgiving-guest-breakfast, I found this recipe on "Tasty Kitchen"

Oh my holy WOW. Is it GOOD.

So good, my kids requested it for Christmas morning. With one alteration- more apples.

Thursday, January 12, 2012


My computer is broken.

Do you think this time it'll scare me enough to back up my important documents and photos?

I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Word Fun!

A friend of mine posted this on Facebook yesterday- It entertained me for quite awhile, so I thought I'd share!

If you can pronounce correctly every word in this poem, you will be speaking English better than 90% of the native English speakers in the world.

After trying the verses, a Frenchman said he’d prefer six months of hard labour to reading six lines aloud.

Dearest creature in creation,

Study English pronunciation.

I will teach you in my verse

Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.

I will keep you, Suzy, busy,

Make your head with heat grow dizzy.

Tear in eye, your dress will tear.

So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.

Just compare heart, beard, and heard,

Dies and diet, lord and word,

Sword and sward, retain and Britain.

(Mind the latter, how it’s written.)

Now I surely will not plague you

With such words as plaque and ague.

But be careful how you speak:

Say break and steak, but bleak and streak;

Cloven, oven, how and low,

Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe.

Hear me say, devoid of trickery,

Daughter, laughter, and Terpsichore,

Typhoid, measles, topsails, aisles,

Exiles, similes, and reviles;

Scholar, vicar, and cigar,

Solar, mica, war and far;

One, anemone, Balmoral,

Kitchen, lichen, laundry, laurel;

Gertrude, German, wind and mind,

Scene, Melpomene, mankind.

Billet does not rhyme with ballet,

Bouquet, wallet, mallet, chalet.

Blood and flood are not like food,

Nor is mould like should and would.

Viscous, viscount, load and broad,

Toward, to forward, to reward.

And your pronunciation’s OK

When you correctly say croquet,

Rounded, wounded, grieve and sieve,

Friend and fiend, alive and live.

Ivy, privy, famous; clamour

And enamour rhyme with hammer.

River, rival, tomb, bomb, comb,

Doll and roll and some and home.

Stranger does not rhyme with anger,

Neither does devour with clangour.

Souls but foul, haunt but aunt,

Font, front, wont, want, grand, and grant,

Shoes, goes, does. Now first say finger,

And then singer, ginger, linger,

Real, zeal, mauve, gauze, gouge and gauge,

Marriage, foliage, mirage, and age.

Query does not rhyme with very,

Nor does fury sound like bury.

Dost, lost, post and doth, cloth, loth.

Job, nob, bosom, transom, oath.

Though the differences seem little,

We say actual but victual.

Refer does not rhyme with deafer.

Fe0ffer does, and zephyr, heifer.

Mint, pint, senate and sedate;

Dull, bull, and George ate late.

Scenic, Arabic, Pacific,

Science, conscience, scientific.

Liberty, library, heave and heaven,

Rachel, ache, moustache, eleven.

We say hallowed, but allowed,

People, leopard, towed, but vowed.

Mark the differences, moreover,

Between mover, cover, clover;

Leeches, breeches, wise, precise,

Chalice, but police and lice;

Camel, constable, unstable,

Principle, disciple, label.

Petal, panel, and canal,

Wait, surprise, plait, promise, pal.

Worm and storm, chaise, chaos, chair,

Senator, spectator, mayor.

Tour, but our and succour, four.

Gas, alas, and Arkansas.

Sea, idea, Korea, area,

Psalm, Maria, but malaria.

Youth, south, southern, cleanse and clean.

Doctrine, turpentine, marine.

Compare alien with Italian,

Dandelion and battalion.

Sally with ally, yea, ye,

Eye, I, ay, aye, whey, and key.

Say aver, but ever, fever,

Neither, leisure, skein, deceiver.

Heron, granary, canary.

Crevice and device and aerie.

Face, but preface, not efface.

Phlegm, phlegmatic, ass, glass, bass.

Large, but target, gin, give, verging,

Ought, out, joust and scour, scourging.

Ear, but earn and wear and tear

Do not rhyme with here but ere.

Seven is right, but so is even,

Hyphen, roughen, nephew Stephen,

Monkey, donkey, Turk and jerk,

Ask, grasp, wasp, and cork and work.

Pronunciation (think of Psyche!)

Is a paling stout and spikey?

Won’t it make you lose your wits,

Writing groats and saying grits?

It’s a dark abyss or tunnel:

Strewn with stones, stowed, solace, gunwale,

Islington and Isle of Wight,

Housewife, verdict and indict.

Finally, which rhymes with enough,

Though, through, plough, or dough, or cough?

Hiccough has the sound of cup.

My advice is to give up!!!

English Pronunciation by G. Nolst Trenité

You can link to it HERE.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Parties Are Over...

and we were back to school and work today.

The alarm at 6am was not a welcome sound this morning. Early bedtime last night and tonight? Yes, please!

We had a great new years weekend- Saturday evening we spent with our neighborhood/church friends- dinner a few games and we were home tucked into bed by 10 pm!

Sunday- New Years Day- we had a few friends over after church.  Finger food and a glass of wine with friends- the best way to usher in the new year!

The new year makes me anxious to start a new to-do list. and do it! My pinterest boards are full of great ideas, and there are so many decorating-ish things I would like to get done in the house.

I do have a few resolutions:

1. Lower my expectations. (It'll help with the rest of the resolutions!)

2. Exercise regularly. (I have a long-term goal, membership to the aquatic/fitness center and a running coach...)

3. Learn how to make things with wood. (I have an extensive list for this one!)

4. Be prompt! (I'm going to try folks, I really am!)

5. Get Jackson to sleep in his bed. (I know, I know.)

6. Be more patient and understanding.  (I may need drugs for this one...)

I'm sure throughout the year the list will grow- but it's a start!

Sunday, January 1, 2012


May the good Lord be with you

Down every road that you roam

And may sunshine and happiness

Surround you when you're far from home

And may you grow to be proud, dignified and true

And do unto others as you'd have done to you

Rod Stewart