Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Our family went at the FlintSloan's for Halloween. I sewed all of our costumes out of fleece-which made things REALLY easy since we were all crazy warm and I didn't have to sew hems into anything. It was perfect!
I think that we looked pretty cute too.
We trick or treated with our closest friends in Weaverville, from left to right is Lucy, Asher, Bennett, Josie, Hadley and Knox.
Asher had quite a time running from house to house to "get some more"! He got so much candy that by the end of trick or treating that candy was falling out of the bag about every four feet. But because he was so tired and hungry, he would LOSE it. And if we tried to help him put the candy back or carry the bag for him, he would throw a fit. Ahh, it was lovely.
After we got home, both kids were so hopped up on candy and other goodies, that we had to let them play for an extra hour. -mommy and daddy are very tired from this experience. I am so glad that it only comes around once a year.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Living in a part of the world where folklore is also known as fact brought to light the "Woolley Worm Festival" that took place last weekend in Boone, NC.
This is from woollyworm.com
"Eleven-year-old Olivia King of Raleigh, NC and her father Tom are the proud owners/winners of Armstrong, the woolly worm who outpaced 1,400 other caterpillars Saturday for the honor of proclaiming the official winter weather forecast at the 30th annual Woolly Worm Festival in Banner Elk.
Mountain folk use the brown and black stripes on the woolly worm to predict the severity of the coming winter.
According to Armstrong, the first four weeks of winter will be cold and snowy. The 5th and 6th weeks will be cold, while weeks 7 and 8 will be cold with light snow. Armstrong says to expect a mild spell during weeks 10 and 11 with a cold an snowy close to the winter in weeks 12 and 13.
The winter weather forecast is an important subject for the people of Banner Elk, a one-stop-light village nestled between the three largest ski slopes in the High South. For 30 years they have raced the black and brown striped worms to determine which one worm deserves the honor of making the winter weather forecast. Tradition says that the black stripes predict cold and snowy weather while brown stripes point toward milder conditions. Over thirty years, the woolly worm has been all or mostly correct eighty-five percent of the time."
woohoo! Last winter was so warm here that Asher never even got to play in the snow! I would love it if we could have a reason to celebrate the cold rathe than curse it!
Monday, October 29, 2007
We just got back from taking high school kids to weekend camp at Sharp Top Cove in Jasper, Ga this past weekend. It was really fun. My parents took care of the kids while I got to hang out with cabin full of junior and seniors in high school-who are hilarious really. My sweet friend from when I did YL at Dreher HS in Columbia, Megan Hafer came up to visit for the afternoon. We realized that we met almost ten years ago, when she was 14 years old. Now that's a long time! It was great seeing her and she told me that she stalks my blog, so I thought that I would give her and Cassie Markham shoutouts!
Anyway, we got back last night and caught up around the house. We found a house online that Matt and I really wanted to go look at, so we set up an appointment with our realtor today to go look at it. I have never had this experience before, but as soon as we crossed the threshold of the house, I knew that our visit was over. The house was terrible. I mean TERRIBLE. And they are listing it for $199,000. $199,000 for a crappy house. Are you kidding me??? The piece of property is lovely and the location is amazing, but NO WAY. I mean the whole house had a drop ceiling, mold was everywhere and it was made for tiny people. Ughh. I don't believe that we are ever going to figure out this house thing.
We had YL club tonight and instead of a typical club, we played Bunco and it was awesome. Kids had a great time and nine kids signed up to go to summer camp tonight. We only just told them about camp yesterday AT camp. It is really fun to do YL at a school where kids are excited about what you are doing and how you want to be in their lives. So I gave the talk tonight and I talked about when I was in high school and what a wreck I was.
I showed them my senior year report card. Yes, I still have a report card from when I was in high school. I made GREAT grades, but I had over 45 absences altogether in my classes from one semester. I had only five official absences, but I missed over 45 classes. Yes, I cut classes. A lot of them in high school. But it never affected my GPA, that's the kind of high school I went to. (My mom and dad must be so proud right now). I then talked about how everything looked good on the outside, but I was a mess. I was so nervous about getting caught or slipping up somehow. I didn't have very close friends. Basically, I had a list of regrets about a mile long in high school. And, as any self respecting high school students does...I wrote poetry to try to be deep and real about my situation. So I made an overhead of one of the poems out of my poetry book that was in fact titled, "Regret". As funny as I try to make things, this was REALLY vulnerable to share in front of 60 high schoolers. It's not a bad poem, but I had to get dramatic at the end and wrote, "My regrets leave me nothing but a trail of tears."
Yes, I am a pile of cliches all in one place.
But, the point that I was making is that all of us live with regrets basically because we are unable to live up to the glorious standard that God has set for mankind. Which in turns, forces us to rely on him rather than ourselves. Unfortunately, we have convinced ourselves that OUR way is much better than his way and thus REGRET takes over because it never plays out well when we take our lives into our hands.
So this is what my talk was all about. After club, we all go to Wendy's to eat and hang out. We gave a kid from the club a ride over there and we were just making small talk about how school was after coming back from Sharp Top and he said, "It's okay, I mean it can be pretty hard to be back. It makes me wants to cry a trail of tears." Thanks. Thanks a lot. Then he went on to quote some his poetry from high school that is over the top. My favorite line of his was about how his life was like, "eating brains in the Big Lots parking lot."
Ahh high school. Don'tcha just want to go back?
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Well, when we go to the Y to go workout, they give the kids stickers with their name on it so that the workers can identify them. When we get home, it is a great game to try to get the sticker off of Lucy's back. The other day, Asher got Lucy's sticker and was being funny so he stuck it to his nose. I had my camera and Snap! I managed to grab a picture of him yelling.
Not such a great story is it? I wish it were more funny, but alas...I am out of material.
I have decided that I am DONE with raising my voice at Asher. It does nothing except for create a situation that is less than desirable. Also, he has begun to raise his voice BACK at me. It is not attractive and it makes me hate how I must sound to my kids.
I decided to start doing this yesterday and it has been remarkably effective. Instead of losing it, I have to take a deep breath and speak reasonably and in a quiet voice to Asher. He has to stop doing whatever it is that he is doing in order to hear me.
We'll see how long this lasts, but I am guessing that sometime changing things up on your kids is a effective as "time-out."
In other interesting news, when we went to get Asher up this morning (in his new big boy bed) he was surrounded by his own vomit.
Last night, he ate about a pound of carrots and sour cream veggie dips last night at dinner. I think this confirms his dairy sensitivity. He didn't eat much else last night and I don't think that his his stomach can take just eating dairy for dinner. Ughh. He has eaten cheese and smoothies a bunch in the last few weeks so I don't think that he is allergic. Just sensitive. He is acting perfectly fine and symptom free, so we know that his NOT sick. Thank the Lord.
But let me just tell you how gross it is to clean off vomit from every nook and cranny around his new bed.
Friday, October 19, 2007
Asher was singing this the whole way home today. I just had to get it on video before he never did it again. And yes, he did remove one of his belts from his shoulder. I am not a very capable mother, but at least I taught him "The Itsy Bitsy Spider".
Monday, October 15, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Today we buried my grandfather. It was awfully sad and heartbreaking to experience. We spent the morning with services and the kids made it. It was a minor miracle. At the graveside, they both started to lose it and so Matt took them so that I could listen to the services. It was pretty amazing to watch and hear the WWII Veterans speak about my grandfather's service to the country. It is easy to forget that the men and the women of his era shaped our world. Nothing we do is without gratitude for what they went through. Pretty incredible.
On a brighter note, I got to see my sister and brother for the first time since last Christmas!
It was really good to be with them on such a hard day. Drew could only be here for today, so he already flew back to D.C. this evening. But Shellie and her daughter Sarah, who is just six weeks older than Asher are here until Saturday. It is really fun that Sarah and Asher are at the age where they are figuring out how to play with one another and it makes everything easier! They are so close in age, it is like they are twins. The resemblance is pretty remarkable. The major difference is that Sarah has super curly hair and brown eyes. But their hair color, skin color and height is nearly identicle. It is crazy fun to be with them and I predict it is going to happen more often!
Lucy decided that today would be a good day to sprout four teeth simulataneously and get a cold. Amazing. She was fine for most of the day, but just in the last few hours of the day spiked a fever, started her nose running and just got cranky. But before all of that happened, I snapped about a million pictures of her in my parents front yard.
My parents live in Albany, GA and many would maybe wrinkle their nose at the location. But to me, this place is the one home that I can honestly call home. My parents live next door to the house that my great-grandmother lived in. My parents house used to be my great-uncles house and I love it here. Sure, in the middle of the summer-it's not so great. Unless you like the feeling of living inside of a greenhouse and breathing in the air from your dryer all day long. But October-wow. It is amazing. My parents have beautiful oak trees in their front yard with Spanish moss hanging down. Because my great-aunt lives next door, the property is pretty much open to us and it is like a movie set from the old South. There is beach on a creek that you reach by walking down a long path like is a bit like walking through the wardrobe in Narnia. Instead of trying to describe it, I have included some in this post. *also, click on ANY of the pictures to see them in full-size. This blog format doesn't allow you to see the details.
You can also click on my flickr link to the right...do it-I promise you the pictures are worth the time it is going to take you.
But being here is like taking a breath of fresh air. Life slows down for us here, even while we are busy with my family duties. We have nowhere to be for most of the day and it is a lovely feeling to simply wander around with my children in a place that holds most of my favorite childhood memories. I am grateful for our time here.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Monday, October 8, 2007
I don't know if you have seen this video or not. But this man from England entered Britain's Got Talent. He was just a normal guy and he blew them away. This was his audition and he eventually went on to win the whole thing. The video shows the initial reaction from Simon Cowell and the rest of the judges. Let me just say, if you do not tear up...well-you might need help!
Yes, we called him "Bob". I don't know when or who started it. But I know that my mom's mother didn't want to be called "Mama" so she made her children call her by her first name and thus, her grandchildren followed suit. I can only imagine that the same was true for Bob. I loved getting to call him Bob. It always made me feel like a grown-up. Later on in life, I found out that in Albanian, "Bob" is a term of endearment for a man from a child...it fits like a glove!
Anyway, Bob was always good for a good story. Either one that he could tell you (that would go many different tangents and would last for quite awhile) or one that was told about him.
One that was shared with me over the weekend, was how he decided that he'd had enough of my grandmother's cast driving her crazy and so he used a circular saw to try to remove it himself. Thankfully, he was only successful in removing about six inches before my aunt arrived to save my grandmother arm from amputation.
He was a pilot in WWII and prior to that, he was an agricultural graduate from Iowa State University. For extra money, he would catalog species of spiders for the biology department and ended up discovering a new variety that was named for him, "Newcomb Spider." I always took great pride in that accomplishment.
His "garden" was something to marvel at. It is nearly an acre in size and we always ate from the bounty he created as children. His corn, potatos, scupernongs, blueberries and eventually kiwi's would fill our bellys. And it gave us a great activity to go and help in his garden in the mornings. He was a renaissance man as he could fix, grow or teach you about the world around you in a very small amount of time.
I am really going to miss him and the color that he brought to our lives. One of the saddest thing for me, is that I won't be able to ask about "Mimi and Bob" anymore. It will just be "Mimi". When will that feel normal? Ever?
I have several great pictures of Bob, but my scanner is not working for some reason. If I can, I will post some pictures tomorrow.
His funeral will be on Thursday.
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Two adorable children. A boy and a girl, two years old and ten months old. They have had all of their shots, mostly are sweet. Lately, they have the propensity to be up all night long in 30 minute increments, one right after the other. Also, they have been battling a mystery illness that makes them cough like they have been smoking their entire lives and have forced us to have them be on antibiotics four times in four weeks. They have since recovered from the illness which makes the up-all-night parties quite a drain; which is why they are free rather than charging $30.
They come with clothes, some diapers and tons of toys which need to leave my house immediately.
They are all packed and are sitting at the end of my driveway. First come, first served.
Monday, October 1, 2007
It is similar to myspace and Facebook except that neither of these groups really offer much in what groups need such as calendar options, blogs, discussion boards etc.
I am working on a launch event that is happening next Tuesday night at The Grey Eagle in downtown Asheville. I really love all of the artists that are performing to support this website launch. What am I working on? I am doing all of the public relations work and so here is a sample of my press release that was sent to media outlets around Asheville on Friday:
ASHEVILLE, NC—The online community site, livekite.com announces a local networking music event called, “LiveKite Live” that will be held at the Grey Eagle on October 9th at 8pm with no cover charge. Local musicians including Derek & Kevin Stipe of Monday Morning, William F. Gibbs, Karl Ruch, Millie Palmer and Doss Church will be performing throughout the evening.
Two Asheville locals, Doss Church and Stephen Lutz, founded Livekite.com. The co-founders formerly worked together in magazine publishing and struck up a conversation about networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook.
“I joined Myspace in the early days and was fascinated by the concept and the rapid growth. I also saw what a great business plan it was,” said Doss Church, president of LiveKite.com. “Before long I realized that there were gaps in the Myspace model where Christian groups should be.”
“As we were planning the development of the site we talked a lot about providing a way for bands and fans to connect,” said Church. “Partly because Stephen and I are both big music fans ourselves but also because we felt like it would be important to a lot of people on the site.”
An Event for Musicians and Fans
“I had been involved with some singer/songwriter in-the-round events in Nashville,” said Church. “I knew how fun they could be for everyone and thought we could do something similar with a few hand-picked Livekite artists.”
The purpose of LiveKite Live is to thank local supporters, in addition to hosting an event where members of the website can meet and socialize in person rather than just have an Internet relationship.
“LiveKite Live is an event that is taking online community into the real world”, said Stephen Lutz, co-founder of livekite.com. “We hope that this event will create a local community around our website and get people excited about local musicians.”
Singer/songwriters will perform acoustic versions of their original tunes currently featured on Livekite.com. The format will be casual and intimate as the artists sit on stage together, interacting with one another and the audience as they each play 2-3 of their favorite originals.
LiveKite Live will be on Tuesday, October 9th from 8-10:30pm at The Grey Eagle on Clingman Avenue.
I am really posting this on my blog to see if my GoogleAlert works and to see if it will get picked up by other sources. Wish me luck! Also, feel free to come to the event and check out the site-sign up even! This is the way that I make money, so thanks for helping me out!