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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

double lucky saves a lot

You all remember my first encounter with Lucky Brand jeans, right? (click here)

Well, pretty much, ever since then I decided that I'll just have to buy more of these jeans. The only problem with that thinking is that my style (sweet dream) went out of style with Lucky. Yes, they discontinued it.

Don't you hate that? Like that really cool shade of lipstick or nail polish that looks great on you, but you can never buy more because the stupid company decided that they didn't want you to look good anymore? But I digress...

Back to the story.

On our way to Charleston, WV yesterday, we stopped in Hagerstown for gas. They have an outlet mall right next to the place we stopped for gas. Convenient? I think so! I usually don't just 'shop' unless I have a purpose. So, I didn't even think about shopping yesterday when we stopped. That is, until I saw that they had a Lucky Brand jeans outlet store. Now, I knew I didn't have an extra $120 dollars just laying around in my purse, but I decided that I needed to just stop in and see if they had my Sweet Dreams there. They were giving an extra 25% off clearance. That's a good sign. If the jeans are discontinued, they are sure to be on clearance, right? So I looked. And looked. And looked. Then.... disappointment. Two sizes too small, 5 sizes too big, too small, too long, too...... PERFECT!!!!!!!! MY SIZE!!!!! HAPPY DANCE HAPPY DANCE, RUN TO THE DRESSING ROOM, STRIP, TRY ON.......ahhhhhhhhhh..... perfect. I asked the guy if there were any more, and there were. I picked out two. They were on clearance for $39.99, extra $25% off, makes them $29-ish. Two pairs for $63-something. I saved $160 on two pairs of jeans. AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas day fun

Mimi with the highly anticipated electric toothbrush. I swear, this made her the happiest.
I am sure I am not the only parent who gets her kids socks for christmas. Mimi got a 'box of socks', Patricia got socks and a shirt, Vivian just got socks, but Trystan got BLACK SOCKS!!! Why do you think I got him black socks? Of course it's because all of his white socks end up black. I decided to save him some time.
So, explain to me the logic behind buying him white shoes. I don't understand it either. The only reason I bought him white shoes is because they only cost $12.50. Yes people, you read right. K Swiss sneakers for $12.50. If they had my size, I would have bought some for myself.
This is Patricia's obligatory bag of Jelly Belly's. They were almost all gone by the time we finished opening presents. She's fast, huh?
Mel got tools. He needed more levels. (whatever)
Vivian and Mimi got lots of bath paraphenelia. Those girls love their baths. Viv couldn't wait to 'paint' the bathtub.
We had been planning on a huge present and reveal for our kids for Christmas since September. We got them a Wii and some games and accessories. The kids noticed a big box in our garage a couple of weeks ago, and guessed what it was. They guessed right, but we tried to pretend that they didn't know what they were talking about. So, on Christmas eve at dinner, Trystan said, "Mom, I bet you are going to set up Guitar Hero World Tour up in the playroom with the Wii, and that will be our big surprise for Christmas." I told him that that would be a great idea if we had one. I still wasn't ready to admit to my cheating kid that he was going to get a Wii. I totally know he peeked, so I decided that I was going to make him work for it. That night, Mel and I decided to hide the Wii, the games, and accessories throughout the house so they would think that we didn't buy them one. After all the presents under the tree were opened, the older two were very concerned. "Is that all?" and "What about the big box in the garage?" were repeated over and over again. We almost had them convinced that we were just holding on to the big box in the garage for a friend, when we told them that they had to search for the last present. This video is what happened. If you decide to watch it, turn your volume down once you get to the part in my closet. Yes, my closet is a mess, and no, I don't mind letting all of you see the mess.

'Wooooooah we're halfway there, woooooo ooohh livin' on a prayer.....'
I am sad to say that I didn't get dressed until about 8:30 pm when Mel and I went out to the movies.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

Mel is so handsome. I love him so much. He is actually baking sugar cookies for Santa with the kids right now. I don't know how I would survive without him. He's the greatest husband ever.

Patricia couldn't be any more beautiful if she tried. Since she's started Facebook, she has mastered the art of the self-portrait. They are so expressive and beautiful. I like this one because she has the 'yeah, right' look on her face.

I am not sure when Trystan took this picture, but can't you just see that he's up to something? It's as if he is looking back to check to see if I can see him bugging Mimi. And he probably did it anyway.

Here is my superstar!!! She is such a sweet child. She's helpful, kind, smart, funny, beautiful. Did I say kind? I love her hair in this picture. I love her hair period. She has great hair. Next time you see her, check it out. You'll be jealous.

Vivian's first dance recital. She was a reindeer. Can you just eat her? She was so hot and cold about dance class. She likes it, she doesn't like it. Her teacher is mean, she wants her teacher to come over and play. Typical three year old. That's what she is. I keep telling myself that one day it will be all over and she won't be a cute little three year old anymore. That will be the day of my dreams.

And now for the real surprise. Yes, I finally did what I have been talking about for months. It isn't exactly what I wanted. It's kinda orangey, yellowy. I might try again next week, but my scalp hurts after two different bleaching applications in two days. My main consolation is that in two months or less, it will be all grown out and black again. Maybe I'll try something else next time. What do you think? Patricia says that now I have to do something really dramatic with my makeup. I keep reminding her that I am 33. Orangey/yellowy hair is enough.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

a picture

Pretty picture of the Washington Monument from the White House. The pictures Trystan took didn't turn out well because:

  1. He's 10.
  2. He had a disposable camera.
  3. He's 10.

Wow! Two entries in a row. It's a record or something. I have to rest now. Take care.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hob-nobbing with the President

Today, Trystan did something really cool. He got to spend the day with the President and First Lady.

He was lucky enough to be one of the few children selected from his school to attend a special holiday reception and performance at the White House. Here's a link to the page.

Trystan took pictures, but they haven't been 'developed' yet. If there's any good ones, I'll post them.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Brandi won, that's it.

That sums it up. I have little enthusiasm for anything lately. Sorry.

Brandi, send me your address so I can mail you a jar of apple butter. I love your haikus. Here's one that describes my current zest for life:

turned off the ringer
still check emails, no replies
depressed? i guess so
Sorry if it makes you want to shoot yourself. Don't worry. I don't want to shoot myself. Have a happy day.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

what does 72 cups of sliced apples look like?

I have my wonderful husband to thank for these 19 quarts of apple butter. Oh, and my kids. They helped him. What was my contribution? I made sausage biscuits for breakfast. I had other business to tend to yesterday. I had to get my iPod replaced.

So, while he was at home slaving away at the stove for hours upon hours, I was chillin' at the Apple Store in Columbia. I mean, I was involved with apples too. It's not like I totally ditched him. I was with him in (apple) spirit.

The taste? Perfect. Absoultely perfect. You can't get any better than this stuff. Want some? I'll give/send a jar to the person who can suggest the best creative way to use this stuff in an appetizer for my cookie party. (Note: I already tried vanilla-cinnamon custard tarts topped with apple butter, I didn't love them)

Monday, October 27, 2008

my first official tag

I am ashamed to say that I haven't visited many of the blogs on my list in a while. So, while updating myself on my friends' blogs, I discovered that I had been tagged. Ok Sarah, here you go!

Here are the rules. I have to answer each question with only one word the pass it on to seven other people.
  1. Where is your cell phone? Island
  2. Where is your sig. other? Upstairs
  3. Your hair color? Black
  4. Your mother? Cruise
  5. Your father? Unknown
  6. Your favorite thing? Food
  7. Your dream last night? Nothing
  8. Your dream/goal? Job
  9. The room you're in? Living
  10. Your hobby? Cooking
  11. Your fear? Chaos
  12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Home
  13. Where were you last night? Home
  14. What you're not? Quiet
  15. One of your with list items? whitewoolcoatfromjcrew
  16. Where you grew up? Gaithersburg
  17. Last thing you ate? Pie
  18. What are you wearing? Bathrobe
  19. Your TV? Average
  20. Your pet? Slobbery
  21. Your computer? Slowish
  22. Your mood? Chillin'
  23. Missing someone? Janet
  24. Your car? Dirty
  25. Something you're not wearing? Shoes
  26. Favorite store? Benetton
  27. Your summer? Uneventful
  28. Love someone? Mel
  29. Favorite color? Purple
  30. When was the last time you laughed? today
  31. When was the last time you cried? today

I know #15 is kind of a long word. I really want it!

Ok, for the tagging part: I tag: Janet, Jeannie, Brie, Shelly, Karen, Kristina, Slavka, and Brandi.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Guess what we did today

Yummy apple picking!

We went to Larriland farms today in the rain for our annual apple picking trip.

Patricia had to stay home to do homework, so we brought our 5th child, Isabel Hitchner.
Look at those two crazies.

You know I had to get some of that apple-eatin' action.

No, we didn't only eat apples. We actually kept some. This was only part of what we picked. It's about 62 pounds. We still had another 20 or more pounds to go after this picture was taken.
I smell an apple pie in my future.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

how do you answer the question...

How are you doing?

You see, I am just getting started on facebook, and I am getting the opportunity to reconnect with people I haven't seen or heard from in many many years. The question I ask and everyone asks of me is, "How are you doing?"

Then the answer is usually, "Fine!" or "Great!" These answers don't really do much for me.

So, how should I answer this question? Fine? Because right now I'm doing fine. Or do you want to know what I've been doing for the past 15 years?

And when I ask this question, I want to know information. Do you have a family? What do you do? Are you healthy? I guess I should just ask those questions. But then it sounds like an interrogation.
So, how are YOU doing?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

warning- not very creative

  1. catching up on everyone's blogs. i've been busy and haven't even bothered to read about anyone's life. i care, i just don't care enough. not really. i feel so behind the power curve, it's hard to catch up. overwhelming, really.
  2. finally got a facebook account. it's like a huge snowball. one person from high school added me to their list, i accepted, and now i am obsessed. some of these people i didn't really talk to, but most of them were good friends way back in tha day. then i decided to connect with church friends, and neighborhood friends, and other old friends. i am sucked in. addicted, i tell you.
  3. happy birthday to me!! i'm 33 and three days old. i love it. i don't feel old at all. except when i remember that i graduated from high school with all of those people i mentioned in #2 15 years ago.
  4. i have a new hobby. i am actually pretty good at it. i am starting to make jewlery. it's so relaxing. right now i have only made a couple of necklaces and earrings. i need to get more beads. i am really excited because i am proud to say that i'll need a table at the SBW 2009. i actually have a project that i can work on all weekend. i am taking bead/jewlery supply donations if you have any you don't use.
  5. thanks to ariella, i am finally going to take steps to get a job working at a gym being a personal trainer. i just need to do it.
  6. that's all for now. i don't think i have more to say right now. if i do, you know i'll post it.

I'm still alive

In case anyone cared. I'll update soon. I promise.

I haven't been busy. Just lazy.
(shock shock)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Speed, anyone?

Am I the only one who has this problem in her neighborhood? Last week, something very sad and unnecessary happened on my street. One way that it could have been prevented is by having speed limit signs posted on neighborhood streets. I live directly across the street from an elementary school. Twice a day, we deal with large numbers of traffic and cars on our street. We have finally been able to get police here during those times to "encourage" a 15 MPH speed limit. However, since we don't have signs, they can't ticket anyone who exceeds that limit. Picerne is very unwilling to assist us in keeping our neighborhood safe from speeding cars. So, along with petitions and meetings with the post commander, we've decided to take things one step further...

This will continue until we run out of sidewalk chalk. Donations, anyone?

Friday, October 3, 2008


It's cool that I have a 13 year old. I have someone who I can bully into going with me to the gym. Not really. I don't bully her. She's been wanting to go to the gym for the past 2 years. She's finally old enough now.

Today we went to Groove. It's an aerobic dancing class. They dance to all kinds of music from Latin to Hip Hop. It's a class that I avoid unless I have someone to go with me. (embarrass themself along with me) On Monday she is going to Step with me and then to Ariella's class, Centergy. I'm generally against going to multiple classes at the gym. It's just too much. But, I figure since I'm doing an easy class for the second one, I'll be fine. (Totally kidding Ariella. I am sure you'll kick butt, especially now.)

That's all. I'm hungry. I'd better go eat something healthy before I pig out on the pre-Halloween candy in my storage room. It's the good stuff too, Reese's and Kit Kats. STOP!! I'm getting weaker, weaker, weaker...

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


There's not really much happening here.

I am just wasting my time until Friday when we go to the Bay's house to spend the night, then we'll spend the day at Hershey Park. I know, we're going to miss General Conference. I won't offer any excuse. Remember this?

I haven't been updating my blog because I've been playing with my new toy. Are you getting tired of all the hyperlinks? I hardly get on my laptop anymore. Why bother? I just have to figure out how to upload my scriptures to it so I have a good reason to bring it to church. If you can hook a 'sista up, I'll bake you something yummy. If you're far away, I'll make you some candy that will survive a trip in the mail.

I went to the Meuse Forest gym again today. For workout Wednesday. Guess who showed up? ME, Myself, and Vivian! I had some latecomer friends who I passed on my way home. I didn't go back because I had laundry on the mind by then. Come on, people! I am here waiting for you to come and exercise with me. I can't do it alone. I need your kids to keep mine entertained. I have a cute little workout planned. It is a workout that anyone can do. It's fun and easy if you want it to be. Or, it's grueling and difficult if you want that. You can do it if you're preggo or not. I promise, there's no treadmill involved, but you'll feel like it was worth your time. So come on! I'm a good motivator, a great encourager, and I am cute! Besides, I'm free! What are you holding back for?

Patricia got herself a blog (finally). It's cute. It's private though. She's such a teenager. OMG! She even sounds like one on her blog. You know, the lazy grammar, bad spelling, slangish talk that teenagers do when they email and text? Did I just say that? I mean, GOSH, I really am getting old.

Vivian and I played baby dolls today. I made it my mission to dress all of her dolls. Yay! There aren't any more nekkid dolls in my house! Well, at least until tomorrow when she undresses them again. Oh! Here's something funny. I'm copying this friend now.

Vivian: I am going to name my baby dolls.
Me: Great! What do you want to name this one?
Vivian: Freddy.
Me: Freddy? Oh, that's a good name.
Vivian: And this one's named is Freddy too.
Me: Two babies named Freddy, huh?
Vivian: No, all of theirs names are Freddies.

Poor babies.

I hope you people have a great day.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Back in the day...

People made their own beds. From wood. And ropes. And straw. Comfy.

Sometimes they just slept on a straw mat on the ground.
They did have cookbooks..
...but their kitchens left something to be desired.

Yes, they knitted, but only after they spun their own wool.

These guys were the original patriots. They granted us our independence from ...
these guys.

On Saturday, we went to a revolutionary war re-enactment. It was the first re-enactment I had ever been to. Mel and some of the kids have been to Gettysburg. Of course, Patricia was totally against it. You know, it's a 'family outing' and it's historical.

Translation: I might have fun and learn something. I hate it.

Naturally, she had a bad attitude at first, but once we got there, she defrosted. (She always has fun. It's the process of getting there that makes her drive us crazy.) After we walked around for a while and talked to people and snooped in on their tents, she asked if we could do it. You know, If we could be re-enactors. Are you serious? After I told her that we all would have to do lots of research and preparation in order to do it, she decided it wasn't worth the effort. Kinda. I still think she wants to do it.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Not for the faint-hearted

This morning when I walked into the kitchen, this is what I saw on the fridge:

Does this mean I'm offically old? I mean, I have a teenager now.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Introducing......Weber, the singing dog!!!

also what happened on 9/8/08

Standing in line for her first ever dance class, she does her most dignified pose ever. Do you like the one of her dancing with the rest of the class? No, she is not doing a solo performance. At least she's not supposed to.

Monday, September 15, 2008

September 8, 1995

Mel and I got married. No, it wasn't a romantic wedding. I wouldn't even call it a wedding. We had a small ceremony at the courthouse in Savannah, GA. I was huge with child. My fingers were so big, Mel couldn't fit the ring on my finger. My mother came along, and got hit on by some old guy with gold teeth.

So, it's been 13 years and one week. I am not going to scan pictures of us when we were young and newlywed. You don't need to see those pictures. Just be secure in the knowledge that we look tons better now. I'll make a list of 13 things you might not have known about us.

  1. We met when we were in the Army. I lived next door to him in the barracks. So did his two previous girlfriends. Seriously.

  2. We love to go out to dinner. Nice, fancy dinners. We like to go to restaurants that have a dress code. We love good food.

  3. We also like to try out 'hole in the wall' places. So far, we've been lucky. For our anniversary, we went to the 'Blue Moon Cafe' in Baltimore. They serve breakfast and brunch. It's on Aliceanna St. in Fell's Point. VERY hole in the wall. (Guy Fieri from Food Network visited there on his show, Diners, Drive-ins and Dives)VERY delicious food. The place usually has a two hour wait. Luckily for us, we didn't have to wait at all. We just walked in and sat down. I can't wait to go back.

  4. Mel and I enjoy shopping. Really. We can go shopping for hours. It doesn't matter what it is. He loves clothes shopping. He'll even try on what I pick out for him to try on. I love it!

  5. We used to take dance lessons. We really enjoyed it. Until we decided that we couldn't afford it anymore. Bummer.

  6. We both love to play video games but never seem to have the time to do it anymore. I am better than him at most games.

  7. Mel is a handy guy. He isn't afraid to take apart most things. If it's fixable, he usually fixes it too. I really appreciate that about him.

  8. I love to cook and he loves to sample my cooking. He always eats whatever it is that I cook. Even if it's bad. Even if I don't eat it. He'll eat it. But it's usually not bad.

  9. We like to do outdoorsy things like bike riding, hiking, and camping.

  10. We take advantage of every opportunity to hang out alone together. Without kids.

  11. We are the only members of our families that belong to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

  12. Mel just recently taught me how to play the card game rummy. I totally smear him everytime we play.

  13. We like to travel. Alone. Without kids. We fantasize about what that will be like when we have the means and the opportunity to do that.

The rare occasion we had to travel alone. Hawaii baby!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

too much for one post

I have so much to blog about, it's crazy. So, I am going to break it up into chunks. I'll blog the big events from the past two weeks over the next couple of days. It's crazy. We had a ton of things happen all at the same time, and I got overwhelmed and boycotted blogging. That's why I am going to ease into things.

On Saturday, September 6th, we planned to have a crazy triple carnival party. Since three of our kids were born within a month of each other, we decided to have a cool outside party for all of them and their friends. We planned a dunk tank, balloon darts, ping pong ball toss, matching floating duckies, ring toss, guess the candy in the jar, potato sack races, and tug-o-war. That's what we planned for 9/6/08. Hurricane Hannah had different plans. She rained out our party on Saturday. Call it what you may, but our ox was stuck in a hurricane. So, we decided to have the party on Sunday. As you all will see, it was worth the wait because the weather was totally fantastic.

Balloon darts

Mimi beating someone at the races

Some of the neighborhood moms decided to race against each other. Check out Misty on the far left.Yeah, I won!!! Sorry about the butt shot. See where Misty is? I don't think she moved. I think she just turned around. Totally fun. Totally. We sang happy birthday to each kid. Trystan turned ten on August 18th. I am not going to list 10 great things about him or list 10 reasons why I am glad he's my son. I'll save the list making for tomorrow's post.

Then it was Vivian's turn. She turned 3 on September 8th. Guess what else is signifigant about that day?

And last but not least is Patricia. She's not 13 yet. Her big day is on Friday the 19th.
I didn't really get a good count of how many kids were at the party. We had mostly neighborhood kids. Patricia invited a couple of people from her school, and we had a mysterious family from church who shall remain anonymous. (I'll only out myself and my family for breaking the sabbath.)

Here's the Tug-o-War line. I wasn't pulling. I was the judge. See Suzan? She was the ready, set, go! person. (whatever that's called) Yeah, the two loudest mouths at the place.

We gave out tickets to the kids and they used them to 'buy' goodies from the store. Patricia, Mel and I had a blast at Five Below shopping for that stuff. I am so thankful to all my great neighbors and friends for helping run the stations, serving food, running the store, and cleaning up. They helped make this the best party ever!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day fun

Today, we decided to do a little family fun at the C&O canal. It was about a 45 minute drive to Great Falls, MD to the national park. Do you know how the canal works? It's cool. This is a picture of a lock. It's like stairs in the water. The lock opens, floods the chamber, and the barge floats up or down the 'steps', then they close the lock and the barge continues on its journey.

This is the beautiful Potomac River. It's next to the canal.

We didn't do much walking along the canal this time because of the Bigfoot sighting. Fortunately, all we saw of him was this footprint he left.

And of course, you can't go to a place like this with all these rocks without doing a little rock climbing. She's a natural.