Monday, August 25, 2008

First Day of School Pictures!

It's official. Keely's in 1st grade and Colin's in kindergarten. My babies aren't babies anymore.
(Click the pictures to make them bigger)

Walking out the door for the first day of Kindergarten & 1st Grade!!!

Keely showing off her new backpack

Sibling Love???

Colin's usual face regarding going back to school

Keely doing a before school spin in her new dress

Keely with her friend Malia. They were in kinder together and again now in 1st!

Colin and his fiancee Caitlyn. They were SSOOO happy to see each other again. Sadly, they are not in the same class.

Colin with his teacher Mrs. Ulrich

Sunday, August 24, 2008


It's been a lot of years since someone has called me their best friend. Until today.

Jeannett has been in my life for 15 years. We have our obligatory 6-week phone call. We talk about everything and anything. She's never called me her best friend.

Karen has been in my life for 11 years. We were two peas in a pod. We were soul-sistas, but not best friends.

Christina has been in my life for 9 years. We have been through a lot. She's called me one of her closest friends, but never her best friend.

Wendy came over with the family to spend a fun day before school starts with us. One of the first things she said was, "I have an opening for best friend. You get to be it." I think I won by default because nobody else lives around here :)

She moved me to her top spot on her myspace friends list AND she made plans to spend her 5th wedding anniversary with us next Saturday!!!

This is what we would look like if we took a Totem Pole picture (I really suck at photoshop, can you tell?)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I Am.... Employed!?!?!?!

It happened purely by chance. I really didn't want to start working so soon, but I knew it would be inevitable once Colin started kindergarten. 7 hours a day 5 days a week alone.... I would go insane. Yes, I have my crafts to keep me busy and happy. Yes, I am actually starting to make some money doing my crafts... but that's a lot of hours to keep sane alone in a house.

Yesterday I was at Joann's doing a little shopping. The cutting counter gals all know me, so we talk and joke around as they cut my fabric. One of the gals mentioned to me that Viking/Husqvarna is hiring. They are the little department inside Joann's that sell sewing machines, embroidery machines, felt embellishers and overlocks. I took an application since I was there and went home. Christian and I talked about it for quite a while and he really wanted me to go for it. Well, I turned in my application, we talked about my availability and was hired right then and there. The manager recognized me since I have talked to her quite a few times to learn more about my serger. SSSOOOO.... I start Thursday. I will be selling machines and teaching classes to the people who purchase a machine.

The reason I accepted the job is she is willing to work around the kids. I will work 9a-2p. I will be home to pick the kids up from school. Unfortunately i will be working on weekends, but again, she is willing to work around my kids. If it doesn't work out... I don't have to stay.

School is Starting

School starts on Monday. That's right, just 4 days and they will be sitting in their little chairs listening to the teacher.

Colin is going into KINDERGARTEN!!! My baby is going to school for 7 hours this year. his teacher is Mrs. Ulrich. She's a great teacher who I met last year with Keely in kindergarten. She's very mellow and calm, cute as a button, and Ulysses really warmed up to her. I think that it will be a good match for him.

Keely is going into 1st grade!!! Her teacher is Mrs. Boyette. Mrs. Boyette lives 4 houses away. Her kindergarten teacher feels that she is the best match for Keely's personality. She has one of her friends in her class so I think that it will help some of her anxiety.

On a very exciting note, the autism specialist for the school (Mrs. Pacheco) who had taken a large interest in my kids last year, continued her quest in helping me out over the summer. She went to the Collin County Co-Op and talked to them about Colin and re-opening his IEP. We have to wait a few weeks just to get everything started in motion, but it looks like this year is starting off in a positive light!!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Pickles, Anyone???

This was my first time making pickles. I learned one VERY important thing.... do it on a day when you can open the windows and air out the house. It still smells of dill pickles 15 hours later!!!

Making pickles is fairly easy. A good way to use up all of those cucumbers from the garden at my parents house. Keely tends to love pickles as much as my dad, so why not make a few jars.

Slice cucumbers thin.

Mix up the all important pickling brine (For my first batch, I cheated and bought the pre-mixed stuff. Next batch I will do everything myself).

Place cucumbers into hot mason jar. Ladle the brine on top leaving 1/2" headspace. Process for 10 minutes in the canner.

Wait 24 hours to check the seals.

1 jar for us. 1 jar for my dad. 1 jar for Grandma Gerry. 1 jar for Leonard. 1 jar left over.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Mmmm..... Blueberry Jam

I don't really sit down much. If I'm not working with or playing with the kids, I'm cleaning and in between the kids and cleaning, there are the crafts.

Last night, I put the kids to bed and pulled out 6 cups of fresh blueberries. It was time...

Take room temperature berries and smush the daylights out of them. Add 4 cups of sugar and bring slowly to a boil.

Once the berries start to boil, turn up the heat, and boil until it reaches the gelling point (when the jam sheets off a spoon held away from the steam).

Ladle it into hot jars, attach lids, and stick into boiling water making sure to have at least an inch or two of water over the top of the jars.

Boil jars in water for 15 minutes. Remove. Let sit for 24 hours. Check the seals on the jar by pushing the center. Hide the jars from the kids so they have no idea you have made such a special treat.

The following morning, wake kids up early exclaiming about the special surprise and they have to get out of bed before the breakfast train leaves. When they sit down half asleep in the chairs, present them with toast smothered in jam!!!