Monday, May 19, 2008

My kids have steers...

Well, still calves at this point, they will become steers... later.

Anyway, I realized the other night I haven't taken pics of them exercising them in our yard this year. So, without further adieu...

Please meet Jeff and Jimmy:

They are Holsteins, but we forgive them.

And Buzz and Woody:

I could pretend I was experimenting in low light, but really, I should have gone out earlier. Ah well.

I should also have taken pictures of Michael shooting baskets... maybe tonight!

Stolen from the internet...

Men Are Just Happier People–

Your last name stays put.
The garage is all yours.
Wedding plans take care of themselves.
Chocolate is just another snack.
You can be President.
You can never be pregnant.
You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park.
You can wear NO shirt to a water park.
Car mechanics tell you the truth.
The world is your urinal.
You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky.
You don’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt.
Same work, more pay.
Wrinkles add character.
Wedding dress $5000. Tux rental-$100.
People never stare at your chest when you’re talking to them.
New shoes don’t cut, blister, or mangle your feet.
One mood all the time. !
Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat.
You know stuff about tanks.
A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase.
You can open all your own jars.
You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness.
If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend
Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack.
Three pairs of shoes are more than enough.
You almost never have strap problems in public.
You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes.
Everything on your face stays its original color.
The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades
You only have to shave your face and neck.
You can play with toys all your life.
One wallet and one pair of shoes — one color for all seasons.
You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look.
You can “do” your nails with a pocket knife.
You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.
You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes.

read this at

Sunday, May 18, 2008

I also have kids...

and two of them had these things called birthdays,

and between working, and baseball, and steers it feels like those birthdays got put a bit on the back burner, so to speak.

But, here they are!

Dustin's i cake, that he had to be told what it was 'cuz apparently the colors in the magazine aren't the same as his ipod...

The essence of Dustin's laugh...

He's so cute!...

and Brian, with his Boston Creme Pie:

Blowing out those candles! He said he needed 25, but everyone else stopped me when I tried to put the 11th one in!

The only gift it occurred to me to take a picture of him opening! *Sigh* maybe next year I'll be on the ball!

Happy birthday my boys, but you will always be MY babies!


I have a new toy.

It's an external hard drive.

I bought it because I work now, and because I never had time to back up my pictures and home video to disc, and I almost lost.them.all.

So now I use this.

My brother suggested I go to to look for an external hard drive. When I found this, I saw it was 1 TB. With some research, that's a terabyte people. 1,000 Gigabytes. 1,000,000 Megabytes. 1,000,000,000 Kilobytes.


I got all tingly and excited.

My average picture is about 3 MB, but Melissa's new camera takes them at about 12 MB.

Then I told Dustin, my now 12-year-old, about it, and he got all tingly and excited. And we laughed strange laughs, 'cuz we are weird.

Weird is good.

Then I emailed my brother, and asked him if I bought that was I going to get stuck needing some $50 cord or something.

He said, "No, but unless you are going to shoot extreme amounts of video, this is serious overkill for you."


So I bought it.

And it came.

And I've been moving stuff. See, my poor computer always needed me to burn a disc in order to defrag and such, 'cuz I was always over the limit of storage, and it desperately wanted to avoid system failure.

My conversation with Dustin included discussion of how much faster the puter could run, if it weren't bogged down. We giggled with excitement!!

So I moved a ton of stuff. Around 50 Gig.

Then I defragged, and never thought to take a picture of how bad it was.

But then I moved more stuff, another 17 gig or so, and defragged again, and see the difference above?

Third time charmed:


You should experience the difference. I haven't turned it off in a day or so, 'cuz it's been busy, I'm all excited to restart and feel the complete difference!

Oh, and my new external hard drive? Still 93% free space on it.

(mischievious laugh!)

Bye for now!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Sorry I've been Scarce...

I've been working.

Yes, I know, my profile says SAHM, and I am, most of the time. But my friend Melissa is a professional photographer. She used to work for a company that employs several photographers, but in recent years she struck out on her own. While her business is not booming, it's pretty busy considering how little marketing she chooses to do right now. Her oldest daughter is Savannah, my little seven year old friend with cancer, so work is not a top priority.

So, one piece of her business is photographing the annual pictures for two different dance schools in our area. And to enable her to be behind the camera, as opposed to answering a ton of questions from parents about how to order their pictures, she hires me to come help. And also to help with the processing of payments, organizing the orders, and getting them in the mail when they arrive from the lab. It's really right up my alley, even dealing with the public. I tell Bill when I get ready to leave, "OK, time for the happy face!" and put on a big smile!

We did one school last Saturday, with a class scheduled every 10 minutes (Betsey came to help with that, she wrote down the picture number as Melissa clicked the camera and I answered Mom questions).

The other school doesn't like to ask everyone to come in on one day like that. So we drive to their city, about 35 minutes, four nights in a row, and photograph the students in costume right before they go into their practice for the evening.


That leaves a lot more room for students to forget it's "picture day" and not bring the costume, and all sorts of stuff. But, we also had breaks between each group, and so this year we brought work to do.

And almost all of the processing of payments was done before we left there last night.

Which helps.

Now Melissa needs to get time to go through all the pictures. She clicks 3 or 4 of each student, then picks the best one (eyes open, not hunched over, smiling) to order. Of course, this weekend her girls are in their own dance recital, so it ain't happening too quick!

So I have the day off. Bill has the day off. He is going to be at fireman training again this weekend, both days, and so he put in for today off.

And that's all I have time to blog now, but I'll be back this weekend.

Because Bill will be at fireman training again this weekend, both days.

What else do I have to do?

Friday, May 9, 2008

To Aura, or not to Aura...

A tractor trailer with logs on it wiped out at least one telephone pole and numerous wires late yesterday morning. He drove for quite a while not knowing what he had done.

Why do I care?

Because my power flickered. It was... disturbed.

I had to turn the TV back on for kids. I had to turn my computer back on.

And my computer didn't work right. It usually flashes a little screen that says Compaq, 'cuz it's a Compaq and they don't want you to forget it. It got stuck on that screen.

I tried 50 million things, and then my brain shut down. It couldn't handle the idea of a fried computer. Not when some of my pictures and most of my video were not backed up. (Hear in your mind that famous Jack Nicholson line: YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!!!)

I spent the afternoon in a fog, trying to talk to people who knew computers without having to spend money.

Nicki finally took my hard drive and put it in her computer. Everything was still on it. I would have shouted for joy, but I really hadn't allowed myself to worry yet! (Hear in your mind that famous Jack Nicholson line: YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!!!)

Sorry, I really like that line!

So it must be the motherboard is fried. Right?

My brother (who fixes the computers for Leavitt High School a couple of towns over) agrees it may be the motherboard.

Me: How much are they?
Him: (laughs)
Me: No, really?
Him: It depends, it may not even be able to be replaced.
Me: How do you figure out if it can?
Him: You look at the motherboard and know what you're looking at.

He agrees to look at it, and says, "Bring it to my work tomorrow."

I am fully prepared to stop at his work, find out what motherboard it needs, and drive on to the city of Auburn and buy it. I am floored by the enormity of the high school I used to attend, first time I've ever driven in the parking lot since it was rebuilt. It's gargantuan.

My brother puts the hard drive back in. He turns it on. It boots up. The Compaq screen flashes by, 'cuz they want you to remember it's a Compaq. I see Count it all Joy's dish of jelly beans on my desktop, where I put it in February 'cuz it looked so springy.

Me: How'd you do that?
Him: I have an aura.
Me: No, really, was there a cord loose?
Him: No.
Me: Then what was it?
Him: I don't know, sometimes computers are strange.
Me: (in awe of his aura).

I go home, put my computer back in with its cords, and turn it on.

It reminds me it's a Compaq.

And freezes there. No jelly beans. No desktop. Just Compaq.

My brother has no aura.

I decide to try a different power strip.

It reminds me it's a Compaq, and then goes to jelly beans.

I breathe. Then I call my mom and have her email my brother so he knows he had no aura.

But he did save me a ton of money. 'Cuz I wasn't ever going to try plugging my computer into any other outlet. Not until I had bought a new motherboard anyway.

Thanks Jason. And thank you inventor of surge protectors.

(and tractor trailer driver, I know gas is expensive, but not as bad as how high your insurance is gonna get if you keep that up!! PLEASE STOP!)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

My Son is no Slouch...

We are trying a new approach to the potty training. Because Daniel is succeeding and I refuse to let my friend's just-turned-two-year-old beat my almost-three-year-old.

Really, whatever motivation I can pretend to have!

Anyway, this morning, we are using Peanut Butter M&M bribes.

I took off his diaper from bedtime, and told him he had to go pee. He resisted, and finally did, I helped him put big boy underpants on.

20 minutes pass...

Mom: OK, it's time to go pee.
Z: NO! I don't want to.
Mom: Do you want one of those? (Peanut Butter M&M)
Z: Yes.
Mom: Then you pee potty.
Z: OK.

Zachary goes to bathroom, but still needs Mommy to help with underpants.

Mommy gets Zachary one Peanut Butter M&M.

Zachary eats it.

Mom: OK, go get your underpants on.
Z: K.

Zachary sits down to put underpants on, and doesn't even get a foot in it.

Z: Uh-oh, I need go pee.
Mom: OK.

Zachary goes in bathroom alone, pees, and comes out.

Z: More M M.
Mom: OK.

Mommy hands Zachary an M&M. He pops it in his mouth, and runs to bathroom.

Z: I need go pee.
Mom: No no no, that doesn't count.

Zachary stops dead in his tracks.

Mom: You can go pee, but no more treat. You need to wait a few minutes, then go pee, then get treat!!

Zachary walks to living room, disheartened.

Mommy spends 20 minutes blogging this story. As she re-reads it, she hears the barstool move across the kitchen floor.

Mom: NO!! No M&Ms!!

Mommy runs to kitchen to keep plan from being foiled!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Don't bother reading...

I'm bored.
and frustrated.
and out of sorts.

I've been suggesting to close friends I'd love to bulldoze my house and start over. I feel like everywhere I step in it there's a project awaiting me.

And we officially started potty training today. I learned my son pees every 20 minutes.


I'm living my day in 20 minute hazy fogs.


I HATE potty training.

I can't even get into the "Oh, yay, it's the last one I'll ever have to potty train, my baby is getting big, blah blah blah," mode.


I've missed blogging memorable things, the steers are in the barn (the one clean thing on our property) and Dustin is now 12, and all I can bring myself to type is complaints.

Poor, poor, pitiful me.

Tomorrow should be better. I hope.

I warned you not to read it.