Tuesday, December 25, 2007

A catchy tune that's sure to get stuck in your head

And while we are on the subject of Christmas, I just wanted to make mention of a great holiday song that was brought to my attention through the power of podcasting.

Since 2005 Grant Baciocco has offered "Grant's advent calendar video podcast". This is a great little video podcast featuring Grant opening his advent calendar. Everyday is a new adventure, (and after seeing his advent total I wonder if Grant's mom would adopt me. :))

This year's podcast features a song by Grant's friend and fellow musician Jody Whitesides. (Jody also provides music for "The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd".) "Christmas brought me you," is one of those songs you start out humming the tune, then you sing some of the chorus and before you know it you're hooked.

Well it's happened I'm hooked, this is a great tune and is now stuck in my head. I keep singing it over and over..

Anyway, check out this video, it's from Grant's advent calendar - Day 10. It's features Jody singing, "Christmas brought me you."

Then if you really like it cruise over to his website and listen to more of his music..


Music That Makes Your Soul Happy

Happy Holidays & hope you enjoy!

Shhh.. listen to the reindeer paws

The stockings are hung, the kids are in bed and the world is quiet for approximately 6 hours if we are lucky. There maybe an occasional stirring from the baby, but hopefully that's nothing that some nursing can't fix.

We hosted Christmas eve dinner this night past. My mother & step-dad, Sister & brother -in-law, my uncle and the rest of crew. We enjoyed dinner and opened a few gifts.

Now, after putting everyone to bed and helping clean up the mess, I think I will sleep. Morning will come much too soon. I will write more later..

Good night all.

Friday, December 21, 2007

What's with all the peas?

Isn't it strange how one tiny thing can cause a whirlwind of attention? One person sharing a bit of their live can effect a whole community, and at the same time cause this community to band together to support this one single person.

So is the story of Susan Reynolds. Susan is an artist and new media consultant battling a dominant magpie gene and cancer, in other words Susan has breast cancer. Being an avid blogger/tweeter Susan decided to share her journey in her battle with breast cancer. Her blog Boobs on Ice chronicles her experiences. However this blog has become so much more than just a record, it has ignited and joined a whole internet community.

The first entry in Susan's describes her discovering the lump and all the tests she experiences in the process of being diagnosed.

She writes," When I discovered a very thick area in my breast I called the doctor. The next day I was in her office. A half hour after that I was in the diagnostic radiologist’s.
A full afternoon and multiple stab wounds later we had a variety of samples of malignant tentacles of tissue that were on their way to the lab.
I was in a little pain - it would increase as the local anesthetic wore off - but left his office with a soft cold pack in my bra.
To keep bleeding down & relieve pain I’d need to keep things cool. Traditional ice packs are hard and heavy. As much as I try to be a good sport I’m not into having a brick sitting on my chest.
Enter a bag of frozen peas.
I tucked it in my bra, took a picture, and was ready to tell the story later that night. That bag of peas added a touch of lightness to what could have been a sad and serious tale."
What Susan got was an Army of Peas. Peaple wanting to help, support and join in her battle. Show us Your Peas to Support Susan campaign appeared on Twitter, and in no time a green wave had covered Twitterville. Visit and you are sure to stumble across a peavatar. If not, visit the Flickr Frozen Pea Group you can view almost 300 different ones.

Yet this was not enough, the Army then tweeted:
"From @conniereece:
We’ve declared Fridays to be Frozen Pea Fridays on Twitter, and this Friday, on the day Susan has her surgery, we are launching a fundraising drive for breast cancer research. It’s called, of course, the Frozen Pea Fund. Susan has inspired us to put the FUN in fundraising."
So was born the Frozen Pea Fund declaring "We will not appease Cancer". The proceeds go to Making Strides, the breast cancer campaign of the American Cancer Society. In the first 15 hours after launch, the Frozen Pea Fund raised $3,493, and the march continues on.
I am peased to add that Susan is doing good as of last report. Both of her surgeries (mastectomy and reconstruction) went well and test results on lymph nodes came back negative which is an encouraging sign.

Meanwhile, Susan's story has covered the globe - from countless blogs, to magazines and the BBC news. The message continues to reach and touch new peaple. All of which is pretty amazing, considering this whole thing began with a blog, picture and a bag of peas.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

My blog has been Meme'd...

Today while updating my twitter page I noticed I had received a Direct message. I opened it and noticed it was from my friend and fellow blogger DJ Nelson of BusinessWifeandlife.com. It said,"You've been tagged for a meme". A what?? Did I win prize? Was I cursed? After doing some more research I learned I had been invited to play a giant game of blogger's tag.

With a meme (rhymes with dream) your blog is exposed to more bloggers through virtual networking. Upon being tagged you are asked to link to the person who tapped you, respond to a question, post the guidelines and then tap several other bloggers so they can do the same.
What are great way to learn about other bloggers while exposing your own blog. I'm still relatively new to blogging. I have more blog entries written in my head that actually in this blog. Hopefully the new ppl who come to visit will leave comments and suggestions on how be a more faithful blogger.
So with out further adieu here are the rules:
1) Link to the person who tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
2) Share 7 facts about yourself.
3) Tag 7 random people and include links to their blogs.
4) Let each person know they have been tagged and comment on their blog.
1. I used to be a new reporter on a local AM NEWS/TALK station. Finding that my research skills were excellent they promoted me to producer. By the end of my almost 6 year stint I was producing both the morning and evening show. It was here I began to teach myself web design. I was then in charge of the station site along with a site for a hard rock station. Talk about learning some lessons. I loved working at the station, but boy do you learn a lot during your first office employment situation.
2. I'm a pack rat. I'm horrible. It's not that I can't throw things away. I just always think as soon as I toss or get rid of something I will then need it again. I also am horrible about wanting to cling to those things of yester year. Things that remind me of my childhood, or the past in general. Then there are those things I just don't know what to do with. Things that I don't really need, don't want to throw away, so I'm left with boxes. My family wants to sign me up for clean sweep - if they did I would be bawling. The host would SO make me cry. I would have to hide everything before he showed up. LOL! I am proud to say however, I am working on this problem and I am getting much better than I was. Not perfect or cured, but better, which is a big step for me.

3. I'm a podcast junkie. I’ve already confessed this in a previous post, but I love listening to podcasts. In fact I"m a research junkie too. So listening to podcast while researching is a great combo for me. I"m working on having my own podcast, but we need to get equipment and all worked out.
4. I want to road trip all over USA. I want to go to greasy spoons, hot dog stands and ma & pop ice cream stands. I would love to visit all the places on a Hot Dog Show and an Ice Cream Program. MMM! MMM! MMM!
5. I used to be a Petra Rep I wasn't good at it though. I'm not an indie rep person, even though I'm consultant for greeting cakes and a couple jewelry companies, I just can't do home parties. I did learn during this time that no one, despite what statistics say and that Victoria's secret has made her quite rich, no one wears sleepwear. Everyone sleeps in sweats, flannel or t-shirts. Guess that's why Petra is no longer in business.
6. My degree includes a concentration in photography. When I was in high school I wanted to be a cinematographer. Well I didn't go that far, but I did have a picture took while on the band trip in high school receive special honors and recognition. The photo travel both around the USA and the USSR on a Kodak photo tour.
7. I married my husband twice, and we were never divorced. This is a really long story. Short of it is some how out marriage license didn't end up at the court house to be filed, there for it expired. Since no one knew where the reverend was who married us we had to get remarried in another ceremony with a new license.
Your turn
Stephanie at stop the ride!
Amy C at Geek Parenting
1Pic at One pic a day

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Planet Hereos.. coming to a mailbox near you

I love FREE things and what better time for free things than the holidays.
So while looking for gift ideas I found a DVD - Planet Heroes..

and the best part is right now Mattel is giving this away for free...

Click on the picture to get yours..

Check it out before they are all gone..

Friday, November 16, 2007

Where in the world?

I thought it would be fun to see who, if anyone, is reading my blog and where they are from. So I am adding this frapper map. Please feel free to add yourself and if you want to leave me a shout out or post a comment about my blog please that would be great!

Have a Spicy day!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Though it's a three ring circus.. sounds like they are having fun

According to O'Reilly's Digital media,"The term podcasting derives its name from Apple's iPod, but to create a podcast or even to listen to one, you don't need to own an iPod, or any portable music player for that matter. In a nutshell, Podcasting is a new type of online media delivery. You publish selected audio files via the internet and allow your users to subscribe via an RSS feed to automatically receive new files. Podcasting lets you create your own syndicated online talkshow or radio program, with content of your choosing."

With this said I must confess I'm a podcast junkie. Every time I get into my car, as faithful as a Husker on game day, out comes my ipod. I can't go anywhere with out it. The quiet sound of the vehicle makes me nuts.(OK, I know what you are thinking - "How could her vehicle be quite with 5 kidlets? Believe it or not there are things called naps.) I MUST listen.. of course my addiction is all my husband's fault. A faithful APPLE user, he had started to listen to podcasts about the same time this new device called an ipod nano came out. I, at the time, was a PC user and knew nothing of this new thing called, "PODCASTING". A few months later, tired of PC virus h*ll, I got my own Powerbook G4. It was then I start learning about Itunes and this fascinating new medium. However it wasn't until my husband purchased me an 80GB Video Ipod for my birthday that I became addicted.

At first I didn't know what to listen to. I didn't want to listen to the same podcasts my husband was listening to, yet I didn't know what to listen to? (No offense. I love Leo. That's just not what I want to listen to while chauffeuring kids around) I downloaded Adam Curry's Daily Source code. It was great to hear a familiar voice. Yet, however great Adam's show is, it was/is not so kid friendly. Then I discovered Podshow's Podfinder - I really loved this show. (After a handful of episodes he stop producing them.Though he recently started again) What a great way to find new podcasts. It was here I heard about 2 new podcasts, "Screaming Halibut" & "The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd".
"Screaming Halibut" was a SNL like skit cast. It was hilarious. They had characters which would appear in every episodes and then new ones each show. Black Pete the Pirate, Luella the Psychic, Smith the office worker and Morag the evil creature who wanted to take over the universe, even though he was cursed with a girl's name. However there weren't many old episodes & I had to wait a whole week for a new one. So once caught up on past episodes, there wasn't enough to fill the whole week.
I decided to then give "The Radio Adventures of Dr.Floyd" a shot. I downloaded it & played it in the car. When my kids heard it, that was it. "Dr. Floyd, Dr. Floyd" they would chant when we got in the car. (I would answer with Dr Grant, Dr Steve, Fidgert and don't forget little Chips) We listened to every episode and then again. However, we soon ran out of episodes. Now what??? What to listen to? Well back to itunes.. hit and miss, hit and miss. Nothing I downloaded seemed to be kid friendly and entertaining to me as well.

Then I
stumbled across "Dancing with Elephants". I remembered this show getting mentioned a couple times on Dr. Floyd and thought what the hey. So I downloaded the current episode at that time - 056 - Shoot for the moon - At first I wasn't quite sure what to think. Here was a podcast where they included their kids. I listened to Greg tell "The story so far"... where he recanted the tale of his childhood, Star Trek and his meeting Tonya all thanks to this classic Sci Fi program. I listen on as Greg and Nik talked about space and the exhibits at the museum they were visiting, and then their kids went to bed and Toyna joined Greg in the podcasting studio. Listening to Tonya I was hooked. Here was someone I could relate to. The more I listened the more I went wow. I had found my new favorite podcast. I decided the best way to catch up on everything I had missed was to follow the advice of the Mad Hatter in Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland "Start at the beginning and when I came to the end Stop."
The more I listened, the more I could relate to this couple and their kids. They talked about potty training, various forms of organization- piles on the table, the fear of bees & spiders, birthday parties, holidays, Greg's love of cooking, Tonya's lack of time, their kids interests, being exhausted.. the only difference was they were in Chicago - a big city with their 2 children and I was in NE with my 5 kids in a rural/suburban setting. (OK there are more, that's a big one though).

Needless to say I was hooked on this podcast and it's circus.. It made my own fun under the big top seem a little more normal. The best part was
they were having SO much fun in the process of sharing their lives with us. As an added bonus I was being introduced to other couples with podcasts - Love Long and Prosper, Pizza Go Here, Tech talk for families and the list goes on.. I soon had listen to all the DwithE episodes and I ventured off to listen to these other great podcasts. Only to find more couples with kids and problems & adventures I could relate. After all 5 kids have a lot of adventures and problems. From them I discovered more podcasts - Redboy, The Big Show, Barely Podcasting ...and on top of it all they were all playing podsafe music.(More for me to listen to, oh my.)

Now I would now like to make another confession - I'm not the ONLY one addicted to podcasts. My 3
middle kids (9, 4 & 3) are addicted too. Spensir will ask me to stop DwithE when he gets out of the van to go to school and asks me to resume the show as soon as I pick him up. He loves listening to everything that NIk is doing and has to say. He can totally relate to him. (He was very jealous to hear NIk had gone to the Star Wars Exhibit) He also recently commented that he thought it was a "good move" to now including Caleb in the show. "It's time, he's old enough." In fact, recently when I finally mustered up the courage to email Tonya, I told him I had received email from her. He said,"Tonya who?" and then immediately stop and said,"You mean DWITH!??? You wrote her?? What did she say???"
Both of the girls can identify the DwithE logo. When we are traveling in the van they will say,"Are we going to listen to Dancing With Elephants or Love long and prosper?? When it's done can we listen to Dr Floyd??" So there is a whole another podcast generation being created as we speak. My teenager listens, but Lowgaen is usually just annoyed that I'm listening to podcasts. He would much rather I listen to music. However I'm still working on him. (Thank you Beatles a rama now if I could just find a Def Leppard a rama show :))
Speaking of writing Tonya at DwithE.. if you listen to their latest feedbag show (73) we're mentioned. I need to listen to hear what is said, but I saw in the show note a link for our company - JALAPENO DESIGNS.. needless to say I'm excited.. Woo Hoo!
I digress though, I am now looking at taking the next step in the podcast world, which is doing my own podcast. I think it might be interesting to offer the life of a family of 7 in podcast form.. but I'm still working out the kinks on that one, especially since I spent a large portion of my time in my car.

So in conclusion, before this gets much longer and I think I'm beginning to babble,
I would like to offer a rating DwithE Style.. podcasting - 10 peppers (I don't have as many thumbs as young Nikolai) DwithE - 110 peppers (That would be equal to 10 for each person in our family = 70 plus 10 for each cat =20 plus 10 for the dog plus 10 for Charlie Bird that would equal 110 thumbs or would that be thumbs, paws and claws?)

On the "Official Chile Heat Scale" we give Dancing with Elephants the Habanero, cause as far as we are concern it's one hot pepper. Keep up the great work Greg, Tonya, Nikolai and Caleb. If you haven't listened to DWithE, what are you waiting for? You won't know what's up under the big top till you do.

Have a spicy day!

p.s. if you have something you would like me to review please feel free to email me.

p.s.s. Tonya Rocks! :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Grammie's are great fun..

Today my mom visited Khyenne's preschool and read the class "Winnie the Witch" by Valerie Thomas and Korky Paul. She wore her official Winnie outfit complete with Wilbur the cat and brought witches hat cookies.

Everyone loved her and I think she had a blast. She sent me an email about it. She wrote," I had a great time reading Winnie the Witch to the class... ".

Then she came over and visited Josephene and Eaven. They both were surprised and appreciated the delicious treat.

Josephene insisted on trying on Grammie's Winnie hat. Then she had to pose with Wilber for some pictures.

Eaven just enjoyed the cookie and became a chocolaty mess.

At any rate everyone had a wonderful time..

Have a spicy day!

P.S. Check out John Barrowman on Cbeebies BBC bedtime hour reading the story. It's not as good as my mom, but she doesn't have her own TV show..

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Color Quiz

Do you believe things can be revealed about you by your color preference or what you like to eat?

I think it's fun just to see what they have to say. So I took a color quiz and thought I would share the results with you.

First let me tell you about the quiz:

ColorQuiz is a free five minute personality test based on decades of research by color psychologists around the world. There are no complicated questions to answer, you simply choose colors with a click of the mouse. This test is based on the work of Dr. Max Lûscher and is used worldwide, most notably in Europe, by psychologists, doctors, government agencies, and universities to screen their candidates. Since the 1950's the test has been given to hundreds of thousands of people. For more information on the test click here.

So Here are the results:

ColorQuiz.comMama+Jalapeno took the free ColorQuiz.com personality test!"Seeks success, stimulation, and a life full of exp..."
Click here to read the rest of the results.

So what do you think? I would love to hear your results. Please share them with me in the comments section or send me a link.

Have a spicy day..

Monday, September 10, 2007

This treat is sure to make you smile..

Khyenne started preschool today. I can't believe my little girl is old enough to attend preschool. She was very excited to go to school and learn like her older brothers.

While at preschool they made this tasty treat - Apple Smiles.

It's apple slices, peanut butter and mini marshmallows for teeth.

At first it didn't really look like a smile. However if you put the pieces together like in the next picture it really does look like a smile.

She was so proud of it she had to save it and share it with me. Before we did though I had to take a picture of this beautiful smile.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

That's how it grows

Last night Miss Josephene followed in the footsteps of her siblings. She decided for some strange reason that her beautiful long blond hair wasn't the looking she was going for any more.

With scissors in hand, SNIP! SNIP! SNIP! Long hair no more, hello pixie bob.

When I discovered this I began crying. "NO!!!!! WHY???? What possessed my baby girl to chop off her hair?? Why would she do such do a thing??" :(

Every one of the children before her has cut their hair, in fact Miss Khyenne did it a couple times. So I guess it should be no surprise that Miss Josephene joined their ranks. That said, however, it still breaks my heart.
Now that I have calmed down, she keeps telling me, "Don't worry mom, I will get some more hair. It will grow back." "Please don't be sad."

As I put her in her car seat this morning I realized she is right. It was JUST that - hair. I pictured her bald. She could have something much worse wrong with her. She could have some incurable disease. She could be laying in her death bed. She JUST cut her hair. So her hair was short. She is still here with me and healthy as could be. So I told her,"You are right, it IS just hair. I"m not happy with what you did, however ultimately it doesn't matter whether you have long, short or no hair. I love you and I'm just glad to have you, still alive with me. You are much more important than the length of your hair."
It's interesting how this turned into a learning experience not just for MIss Josephene.. all thanks to a pair of scissors.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Growing like a weed...

Tonight Eaven clapped his hands for the first time. I was surprised to see him do this. I have been teaching him how to give "five", but I never saw him clap his hands.

Today he also climbed up the step to the landing that leads to the stairs to upstairs. So hello baby gate between the front room and the hall. He has been pulling him self on things and crawling all over.

When he crawls he doesn't like his knees touching the ground so he crawls on his feet.. He does this bear walk, drag a leg thing. Must work though cause he's fast.

He's not the only one who is growing up. Tonight Lowgaen went to play with the pep band and on Saturday he will be marching with the high school band at the state fair. Wow! what a lot of memories that brings back. Only thing is the lucky dog gets to march in polos and shorts. When we did it my freshman year we wore the wool uniforms the band had. What a scortcher that was. Listen to me.. when I was a kid.. oh well I guess you will always compare your experience to that of your childs.

Spensir has begun bring home homework every night. He has a spelling tomorrow. Tonight he tried to tell me that he knew all the words even though he had left out some letters or had put them in the wrong order they were still right. LOL! He's logic is so amusing. :)

Khyenne got a letter that preschool will be starting soon. I can't believe she is old enought to go to preschool, let alone she can go to kindergarten next year, and Joey the year after that.

Josephine has begun calling herself by her name. If you call her sweetie or trouble she will tell you that is not her name, that her name is Josiephenea. Don't call her Josie though.. only Grammie Sharon can do that.

Tomorrow is Friday, yeah, but not so much.. the weekend always means lots of work. Screen printing and t-shirts this weekend.

Well, better get back to it.. lots to do before bed.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The end of an era

Well it has finally happen the elusive Ranch Bowl in Omaha has met it's fate.. demolished to become another super center. This hot spot for bowling, sand volleyball and music was an icon in Omaha Nightlife. This WAS the spot to see new bands and artists that might not otherwise have come to town. This was the spot that the radio station KROCK was born, and now it's gone.. I can remember as a teen ager the excitement I would feel as we drove down 72nd St waiting to see that Ranch Bowl sign and who was coming in concert. Most of the time it would be a new band that I hadn't heard of, but every now and then there would be some one who I was dying to see.

One of these such times, was when I was a Junior in College. One of my favorite bands - THE BEAT FARMERS came to rock the RANCH BOWL.

Now let me say that I was not the typical Beat Farmers fan. Being the thrifty college student I was, I used to visit Homer's and raid their 1.99 cent cassette tape bin. Looking for something different I purchased the Beat Farmers' album Pursuit of Happiness. After listen to this album I knew I needed to hear more from this group. The more I heard the more I loved this bands music. So when my boyfriend at the time told me the would be appearing at the Ranch Bowl. I HAD to go. Now understand I was going cause I loved their music, their lyrics, I didn't realize that the rest of the ppl attending the show were there for a TOTALLY different reason.

They were their for Country Dick Montana and could careless about the rest of the band and their music. For those of you who don't know Country Dick was the founder of the band - Wikipedia describes him -"Country Dick Montana was known for lying on his back and drinking his beer using only his feet, like a grizzly bear and bantering with his audiences, whom he often sprayed with beer. After performing a show, he would often walk around the club, shake hands, sign autographs, and chat with fans. "
Now as I said before I wasn't the typical Beat Farmer fan, that's because I didn't know anything about the crowd appeal of Country Dick.

So we got there early and got a table close to the stage. The concert started and the music was great, but most ppl didn't seem to care. They keep chanting "Happy Boy" - a song Country Dick sang. I couldn't figure out why no one else seemed to be enjoying the concert. Then it happened, Country Dick took the mic. The crowd surged and we are surrounded by ppl and pitchers of beer.

As Country Dick sings he keeps looking at us sitting at the table enjoying the show. Ppl keep give him beers. Taking a cup of beer he leaves the stage and heads straight for our table. PPl surge around, engulfing him. That didn't stop him, he kept coming until he is sitting right on top of our table. Someone hands him a pitcher, and he starts pour beer for everyone. I'm in shock. Country Dick is sitting on MY table right in front of me pouring me beer. Needless to say that was soo cool.

Song over, he returned to the stage and Joey bursts back into song. They finish the show and were going to do an encore when we had to leave. As we departed we ran into the band at the door. They wanted to know where we were going and said we should say. I touched Joey on the shoulder and told him, you guys rock. I love your music.. something to the idea of I love you with or without Country Dick. I just couldn't believe the only reason ppl had come to seen the Beat Farmers was because of Country Dick. Their music was awesome how could Country Dick be the only attraction?? Guess that shows how young I was. How I wasn't the let's go party and get drunk college kid. That's a different story for a different time though.

I digress though.. the whole point was this WAS the venue for independent music acts and I wouldn't have ever had the chance to see a band such as this without the Ranch Bowl. So that's why my heart, along with others throughout the city, is broken. Corporate America has come in and demolished our Rock n Roll haven. IT"S GONE!!! My kids won't have the opportunity to listen to great new indie bands in this once hot spot.

I just too distraught.. I can't even figure out to end this post :( .. so I will just say May the Ranch Bowl rest in peace.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Hey look who's wants to be a pepper..

So tonight after dinner, (We had my mom and step dad over to celebrate their 5 year wedding anniversary) I was going through some things in the kitchen & came across the jalapeño costumes my mom had made.

Miss Josephene wanted to know what they were, when I told her she insisted I put it on her. She thought it was great. She keep saying,"I"m a pepper. I'm a pepper."

She was dancing around the kitchen when Miss Khy heard her. She then, of course Miss Khy had to put her costume on as well.

So here is a picture of two of my peppers. Won't Grammie be surprised when she see this?? :) 

One more of Miss Josephene, cause she looks SO cute :)

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Happy Birthday little Joey, part duex

What can be funner that getting to celebrate your birthday twice? It's like that never ending holiday party you celebrate at lots of relatives house through out the month of December.

Since we were out of town on her birthday tonight we celebrated MIss Josephene's birthday, again.

We had a small party at my mom's house tonight. We had a pool party with a cookout.

Joey invited the neighbor kids to her party. Everyone had hot dogs and hamburgers, chips and fruit. Then when they were finished feasting into the pool they went...
All the kids had a great time swimming in Grammie's pool. Grammie has one of those inflatable pools in her backyard. It isn't huge but it's a great size for kids and they love coming to Grammie's to swim.

Miss Khyenne looked especially sweet in her collection of inner tubes. Joey tried on a variety of goggles, flippers, noodles & all other fun things Grammie has for the pool.While little kids climbed in and out of the big inflatable pool and the plastic baby pool, Lowgaen and Spensir splashed it up.

After they were soaked to their gills, everyone proceed up on the deck for a little song and cupcakes. Then Miss Josephene opened her presents. She got games, books, clothes and one highlights of the night....
A Dora the Explorer backpack.. and then she received a handmade crocheted purse from Grammie - SHE LOVED IT!

Everyone had a wonderful time, especially Joey who kept telling everyone she had already celebrated her Birthday and she must had either turned 2 and was now 3 again or that now she was like Khyenne and was 4. if it was only that easy :)

Have a spicy day.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Three times is a charm

Well tonight we celebrated Joey's birthday for the first time. I say that cause when we return to Nebraska we will celebrate with my parents, relatives and Joey's friends there.

I'm pretty sure Josephene had a nice birthday. We went to the water park - ok It was more like a sprinkler park, but it was fun for everyone & it was free..

Then in the evening we went to McD's and had dinner, that way the kids could play in the giant hamster maze playroom. There was a thunderstorm and it started to down pour and the whole right side of the building was soaked, the floors were covered in water.

This didn't stop the kids.. they had a blast.

Then it was back to Grammie's house for cupcakes and ice creams.

The present time! I think she faired rather well for a 3 year old. Dora, Blue's Clues, George the Monkey & a Spiderman Potatohead.

Just think she still has more presents to come....

Happy Birthday Joey!!!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Transformers.. more than meets the eye

Well it's finally here one of the summers biggest blockbusters TRANSFORMERS. Yes you remember from Saturday morning cartoons.. Well, they are back on both the big screen and on Cartoon Network. In fact, they are everywhere.. I am reminded of this fact every time I take my 9 year old shopping. So you can imagine his joy when my husband announced to him that they were going to the midnight showing of this movie. That boy has been walking on air with anticipation for 4 days now. I think if he had to wait any longer he would explode. So at 10:45pm my BIL is stopping by to pick up the rugrat and take him to meet the other guys (my hubby and a friend from his work) and they are going to Buffalo Wild Wings to grab some chow and then off to the big 24 screen movie theater. So the question remains, will he make it through the movie without falling asleep?? I'm sure what ever the answer, the movie is the only thing I will be hearing about for a long while. Now don't get me wrong.. I"m sure it will have lots of action and I really do like sci/fi movies. However I can honestly say that I really don't care about cars transforming into robots to save the world. How about the getting me to my son's school on time when I"m running late because the same 9 year old can't find his shoes?? Now that would be cool. Or how about a car that takes itself to the car wash and comes back clean? What a time saver. Them saving the world though??? I don't think so. Isn't that Spiderman, Superman and Batman's jobs? If there is too much to handle I"m sure Daredevil and Ghostrider along with the Fantastic Four could help out. Heck even the Incredibles would pitch in.. but my car?? I need it to drive me by itself avoiding road construction and traffic jams, that would save my world. Yet, if we are on the subject of robots who could do useful things how about a few of these ideas.. So they already have robots that will vacuum your carpets, wash your floors, clean the pool, cleans the workshop and even mow the grass. Heck they even have one you can program yourself and two of these look similar to Johnny 5 from Short Circuit. How about a robot that will teach my almost 3 year old how to use the potty? Or how about one that will referee my kids when I just can't take one more fight over something stupid? How about one that will make dinner for everyone? You know one that will prepare what each person wants and still make it healthy? Now I'm not saying I want to hand over all my parenting to a robot, I just want the robot to help me have more time to spend with the children by letting me accomplish the other things I need to do during the day. I should also say I'm not anti-robot. I think they are great. I mean check out this article about the robotic finger. How cool. Stanford even has a robot that passed it's driving test. 3:33 AM .. well they're home.. and the 9 year old made it through the whole thing... and the rating is a big thumbs up. I'm sure I will hear more tomorrow once he's got his rest. Now that my happy brood in home and tucked into bed.. I'm off to catch a few winks myself... maybe I will dream of robots in disguise.. Oh and by the way report from the theater is people came in costume.. they were wearing boxes.. I guess it could be worse they could remake the Garbage Pail kids movie.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Cheesecake anyone?

30-something years ago my mother gave birth to a little girl. No, it wasn't me. I was already here. I had been for 4 years (see photo). I live in a big green house with my mom, dad and cat. Then one hot June day my mother went to the hospital. I went to stay with a family friend, Jerry. Then my Grandmother came and picked me up. I went and stayed with her and life was good. When my mother returned from the hospital she had a new baby. A baby who was allergic to everything, including my cat. So despite my begging the sister stayed and the cat was given to a family who had recently lost their pet. The rest is history.

Oh yes there are the stories.. the ones of boyfriends, neighbor kids, school, holidays, dances, fights, trouble and just growing up together. Today though I shall refrain from sharing those.. cause today we went and added one more candle to my sister's slice of cheesecake.

Today is her birthday.

In celebration she chose to have a girl's day out. My mother, 2 daughters, baby and self joined my sister at the Cheesecake Factory for lunch and dessert.

We ordered salads & kid's meals that cost too much. It took way too long to be served, much longer than any little kid could possibly sit still. However we had desserts, conversation, and despite the food problems, it was a nice little soiree.

Then we went to material girl boutique, where my sister hosted a purse party. Kinda like a Pampered chef party, but for purses. We had gourmet cupcakes. I purchased a cute tote that is black with red handles. It says "HOT!"

It was quite the day, by the end the little girls were VERY tired & crabby. The most they could say before I loaded then in the van was Happy Birthday Aunt Terra.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Louisville Daz..

Summer is officially here. Memorial day is just around the corner and that means Louisville Daz. The annual bash to celebrate the town we live in. Every year there is a parade, and for the last 3 years we have walked in the parade as a way to show community support and promote our business.
My gpa let us letter his vehicle, so every year we get him to drive in parade and we walk behind distributing candy.
This year we thought it would be cute to have a mascot so my mom (the sewing genuis) whipped us up some pepper costumes. One for each of the little kids. NO ONE wanted to wear them. My mom was SO proud of the costumes and the kids REFUSED to wear them. She was HEARTBROKEN. So after much prodding and convincing Miss Khy unhappily agree to wear the costume in the parade. Miss Joey wore her costume on top of her like a blanket in the stroller and Mr. Eaven wore his, but it wasn't real visible in his car seat & the stroller.

We threw candy and flyers (frisbees) we imprinted. It was a good turnout so hopefully ppl will keep the flyers and give us a call.

It was a good time. We're suppose to do again next week-end for Springfield Daz. :)

Monday, May 07, 2007

Wii.. the journey to find one was not soo fun

You've all heard of it, you know that wonderful interactive game system by Nintendo that was released before Christmas 2006 and no retailer on the plant seemed to have in stock.

Even months after the holidays have pasted and discount retailers such as Walmart and Target continue to run the advertisement video over empty cases bearing the sign "Due to this and that we are currently out of stock".

Even though the system remained to be close to impossible to obtain my husband desired one. He would make sure that each trip to Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Comp Usa etc included a strategically placed pass through the electronics department and down the aisle containing those empty glass cases in the hopes that just one box would have been secretly put there just for him. With each pass also came the sad sigh and the bubble of hope popped by that dust gathering empty glass display case.

After a few months of looking with no luck, and no sign of the inventory replenishing itself I began to search online hoping to find some glimmer of hope. I read message boards, searched online store inventories and began to question the true existence of this machine. Was it just a made up marketing scheme? Why was this thing SO hard to find? Why did only the people on ebay seem to have these units?

Then it occurred to me why not ask the simple question "find a wii"? With this google I found digg.com and a post entitled Find a Wii in your area, Target is holding out Here I read about how Target and other retailers might not have the item on the floor, but you can check there stockroom to see it's availability(more on this to come). Also the post had a link allowing you to use Target's website to check if your local stores had one in stock.(This link isn't showing all the info anymore) You would simple need to change the zip code to your area and it would show you a listing of your local area stores highlighted in red (not available) yellow (limited availability) and green (available). There was a second link to Gamestop/Eb games Again, change the zip code and poof your local store stock was listed. With these two new tools I thought finding one should be a snap.

So I began checking these links every couple weeks, just to see if possibly one showed up. With every check I would see nothing, no units available. A couple months passed and still no luck. Then we went to Wichita to visit my MIL. Just for the heck of it I went to the sites and typed in the local zip code. No luck, nothing at Target. Then I tried the Gamestop link, nothing, nothing, nothing, 1-3, nothing, 1-3, nothing, nothing.. Wait! 1-3??? The Gamestop in Wichita at the mall had them??? AHHHH! So we were off to the mall to get our unit.. how exciting, all the searching and waiting had finally paid off. Parked the car and rushed into the building and right to the store. "Hi, do you have any?" "No, sorry we just sold out last one about an hour ago." AN HOUR?!? AHHHH!!! No, no, no. so close and yet soo far. We headed back to the car. You could see the disappointment on my husband's face. The brave face he tried to keep acting like it was ok.. It WASN"T ok. He had been waiting months for this new toy and we had missed the op to grab him one.

That was the turning point.. the moment I decided I was going to FIND HIM A WII. I was going to get one for him and surprise him.

We had learned from the gamestop guy that they received their UPS shipments on Wednesday so by the time the computer site was refreshed they may be all gone. A piece of information I thought I would use if I couldn't find one otherwise.

So I started monitoring the target website link. Nothing but red, not available. Then one day while shopping I couldn't find the type of diapers I was looking for. I know you are probably wondering what this has to do with wii.. well I couldn't find what I wanted and I knew they offered them. I had remember reading about how some of the scanner units at Targets have numbers on the sides of them. You could punch in upc codes into the scanner and see if that store had the item available in their stockroom. So I thought what the hey. I found the boxes that were similar to the one I wanted and figured out how the code worked for that brand. I nervously punched the number into the scanner. Ding! There it was. They had boxes in their stockroom. Now to just find someone to help me. After much ado about nothing. I explained how if you punched the upc code in it showed they had some in the stock room. With an amazed employee in front of me, she called the stockroom and got me the diapers I wanted. She stated she didn't know you could do that. Yet as I looked at the sign above the scanner I felt a little more reassured, it said scan a price, check our stockroom. That's right, they wanted me to check their stockroom.

SO if they wanted me to check, check I would.

I continued monitoring the website. Nothing, nothing, nothing. The one day I read that best buy, circuit city and toys r us were going to have them in stock. I had read it to late though, I was sure they would all be gone. Then I checked the site, nothing here, but other zip codes were starting to get them, Especially Minnesota, home to Target's home office. Hmm.. must be nice to live there.

Then magically when I check our store, BING! one store was GREEN. I couldn't believe it. It had to be an error. So I checked again the next day, WHAT? more stores not red? Some said limited, but the store on Center street was GREEN. This was it. I was going to take the kids to school and then we were going to buy a unit for my husband. We went to the first store. I was SO nervous, this was it. In we went, right to the electronics. EMPTY CASE.. ok fine I'm going to check the scanners. CURSES! No number buttons!!! (NOTE* newer targets have gotten rid of the buttons on the scanners. However here is a way around that too UPC code If you go to this page you can look up upc's for lots of products then just scan them at the store. This will help you find out if they have them in stock. hehehe ;)) So I asked the lady and she said automatically, no they didn't it. I told her that the site was showing the did. So she went to talk with a fellow employee. She returned to tell me Sunday they were suppose to get more. So we proceeded to a different target.

We strolled on in and towards the electronic dept, but first I found a scanner. They had buttons.. WOO HOO! So I typed in that magically number 207-25-0001 hit enter and DIng! Stockroom - YES
I was so excited. This was it. I went over to electronics. Looked in the case NOTHING. To employees stod there yapping about something that had happened the previous night. (NOTE this was a MONDAY) I asked the guy, "do you have any of these?" "The Wii? NO." I replied," your scanner says you have some in the stock room." "Uh, just a minute." He went to an different employee. They huddled. I watched as they figured out what to say. The other approached me. "We don't have any. What happened was this.." he began as his eyes remained shut.."We had some on Friday and you have to check them out when they leave so they are showing up in the stockroom, even thought they aren't there." Anyone got some hip waders? I was steaming. He just stood there and lied to me. He couldn't even look me in the eye it was such a big lie. I could feel the steam beginning to come out my ears. HE had lied to me. I said, "but your scanners show you have them in the stockroom." " It has to be reset." "OK?" I said.. ready to explode. I was SOO PISSED. I leave immediately. There was no way I would do any of my other shopping there.

We dediced to go to one more Target, the one that had been green since Sunday. When we got there I checked the case, nothing. I checked the scanner, nothing in the stockroom. Well then maybe my search engine was wrong.

Later that evening I told my husband of my experience and how I was ready to bitch slap that guy for lying to me. (ok maybe that's extreme, but i was still fuming, even as I write this many days later I'm fuming) Hubby said"Did you look to see how many they had in the stock room?" I had even thought of seeing if it told me a number.

Next day I checked the site again.. more yellow, more green. GRRR!! I'm TOO MAD.:( I will wait and see.

Next day (it's wednesday) I decided I needed to get a birthday present and some other things I would try some others and see what I could find. Quickly checking the site on the way out almost every Target in the area had them, some of the yellows had even turned to green. So upon dropping the kids off at school I was off. The first Target I went to I punched in the numbers.. in stockroom - NO.. ok let's try a different one. Next store.. darn they have scanners with no buttons. Ok one more.. let's go back to the liar target.

I enter the store, check the case, empty. I find a scanner and type in the number - in stock room? - YES 4 (3-1-3) So they are still there. Shouldn't have the system been reset by now? I find an employee. "Can I ask you a question?" I take her to the scanner. I say" If I punch in a number and it says you have them in the stock room, do you really have them in the stock room?" "Hmm, oh a wii? NO, we don't have any of those." "Then why does it say you do?" "I don't know, you should ask electronics. I was told we didn't have any. I didn't even kn ow you could do that" I said,"the signs says you can" I thanked her and proceeded to the electronic dept. There stood Mr. Liar. What was I going to do?? I could take him on. I could get a manager. Or I could try to control my temper and simply leave. Did I really want to cause a scene? I decided it was best for me to leave and get my husband. I didn't want to be banned from Target for life.

I went to my husband's work I was fuming.. how could hey do that? How could they lie to their customers? What kind of business practice was that? grrrrr. I started telling the story to one of his co-workers. This just made me madder. I started showing them the websites. We pulled up the gamestop one. It showed that they had some one the way and a store in CB had some in stock. NO time to check it out though, too many errands to run.

Once the errands were complete and our second son collected from school we decided we would check out the local game stop. Waiting in the car, holding my breath hubby proceeded into the store. He started talking to the guy behind the counter. He talked and talked. What was going on? Why was this taking so long? After 15 minutes or so out he came, package in hand. He had obtained his goal. He had a Wii..that mysterious creature.

After playing the Wii sports game which comes with the system (249.99) I know why everyone is desperately searching for this gaming system. You can bowl, box, golf, play baseball, and tennis. There is nothing like it. We are playing doubles in our living room. We can have family bowling night. We can hit the green and practice our swing. We can get out frustrations and work up a sweat boxing against each other.

Plus any age/skill level person can play. We purchased Wii Play which comes with it's own controller (this gives us 2 controllers). There is a game in which ride on cows and race each other. Our Daughters, 2 and 4, can play this with no help. It's great that they can be included in the fun. We took the unit to my parent's house so we could show them how fun it was. A bit leery at first, we soon had them bowling with us. Afterward my mom said,"You will have to bring that back again." What a great thing that can have appeal to such a wide group of ppl, even those with little or no gaming skills.

Kudos to Nintendo for seeking out a new market of gamers and offering a unit that allows those individuals to get off the couch and involved.

As for Target, I'm sure I will get over my disgust with being lied to, but I don't think I can think of the retailer, especially that location in the same light. Shame on them, makes me wonder what else they are hiding in the storeroom.

Until next time.. have a spicy day!