Thursday, May 29, 2008

Been a while

Ahhh...we have been living like its 1970 in my house.  First, Neil's Mac notebook broke and then my laptop was eaten alive by a virus.  So we have ordered one of those new Mac computers (the ones that have the hard drive built into the monitor) that should arrive tomorrow.  Neil is in DC playing a show and I am at my parents (partially because I was jonesing for some computer time and partially because I have a yuck-o dentist apt at 8am tomorrow and my mom and dad are keeping Layla but mostly because its always nice to be "home" for a night--or two).  ANYWAY...this will be quick--I'm probably being very rude right now :-)

WELL-I am now up to 7.5 miles (hopefully this weekend).  My dad and I are planning on running the Kiwiah Island marathon in December.  It will be my first and my dad's second or third...he did the Marine Corps marathon when I was younger.  So YAY--I am doing something healthy for me AND spending time with my daddy.  WONDERFUL!  Its so nice to learn from him--no matter what it is.  He has a very gentle way about him...something that I REALLY admire.
On to my sweet little Layla...geeze she has changed so much this past week...she actually is starting to "sort" things, which has me completely baffled.  Today for example, I fixed her a snack bowl (with her expert direction) of goldfish, Cheerios, raisins and a tiny little graham cracker.  I sat her in her high chair and started cleaning up the kitchen.  She was chattering away and kicking her little feet on the plastic foot rest, so I knew she was content not having my undivided attention--which struck me as very strange.  So I went over to her chair to find that she had dumped her little bowl out on the table and LITERALLY sorted her snack so that each item had its own pile.  In fact, each pile was spaced almost equally apart from the other piles.  And, each time she would place a raisin in its respective pile, she would get the cutest little smile of satisfaction.  HA and I noticed that I had that same little smile as I watched her "work".  So cute!  

The day before yesterday, she dug through her little basket of stuffed animals and pulled out every rabbit--even the small "baby" rabbits and put them in a nice little row--all ten of them with no stray bears or dogs.  Then, she picked up three bunnies, held their faces together, kissed them and then giggled like crazy.  She is so stinkin funny!  

Well..until next time..which I am hoping is soon and from my own computer :-)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Snobby Rants...sort of :-)

YAY...I just joined the Davidson County Public Library and got my FREE library card!  I don't know why, but I have always been a real snob about books...insisting that part of the reading experience was knowing that the book was ALL MINE and that I could put it on my book shelf when I was finished.  After dusting off HUNDREDS of Neil's and my books and looking at the way they litter our closet floors, I thought a little more about getting a library card.  All those books suddenly represented little trees and lots of money.  I think my recent trip to the grocery also strengthened my own inclination toward "joining" the public library.  Can you guys believe how much groceries have gone up over the past several months. Its insane!  Really, I shouldn't be so excited about my new library card...but I am THRILLED.  And get this...they have toddler reading time every Wednesday from 10-10:45.  YAY...another fun, educational and free activity for Layla and me!

Now for my rants...I had this strange feeling while inside the library...I felt proud that I was being eco-friendly by recycling books--so to speak--and by walking to the library.  And I should be proud--but then there was the guilt with a slight hint of anger.  Neil and I have been talking a lot lately about how the idea of "Green" has become a seemingly "liberal" cause...and we both have SERIOUS problems with that.  We own a Toyota Prius...I walk everywhere I go during the week (mostly to the YMCA and the local owned grocery)...we buy local produce, dairy and eggs...Neil does green construction...we are NOW MEMBERS OF THE LIBRARY (I'm still a little excited-HA)...and because of that...some of our acquaintances have painted us as liberals--actually I think it went "hippie liberals"...a label that most of you know I absolutely DETEST.  I want to take the time to say that I am no less conservative than I was years ago.  Really--no more and no less..I'm still pretty moderate.  And my motives behind the car I drive and the lifestyle my family leads are not influenced by some liberal sponsored "green agenda".  

While Neil and I a firm believers in being good stewards with the world we've been the end of the day (and here's my conservative streak coming wait for it) our Prius and my walking saves us money.  The local produce, eggs and milk that I purchase are healthier choices for my family.  And now, my library membership is saving me money and time (no more dusting off new books on our book shelves).   Should I be ashamed of my motives..NOPE. And you all should know that I am equally as disgusted with the Rush Limbaughs and the Al Gores who have made this "green thing" political.  Give me a break guys...seriously!  

Done...done with the ranting.  Whew, I feel so much better even if no one reads this.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Laundry Detergent I have had a couple of folks express interest in how to make their own laundry's how it works...but make sure you  have one of those GIGANTIC containers because it makes a ton.  Hopefully, Lindy, this will keep ya'll clean in Africa :-)

Here's what you'll need:
1 bar of soap
1 box of washing soda (look for it in the laundry detergent aisle at the store-it comes in an Arm & Hammer box and will have enough for six batches of detergent)
1 box of borax (this is defiantly NOT necessary but it is good for yuck-O stains)
1 5 gallon bucket
A big spoon, a measuring cup and a knife

Pour about four cups of water into a pan on your stove and turn the heat up to high until its almost boiling.  While you're waiting, get your knife and start shaving strips off the bar of soap into the water whittling it down.  Keep the head below a boil and keep shaving the soap.  Eventually, you'll shave up the whole bar, then stir the hot water until the soap is dissolved.  The water should be SUPER soapy at this point.

Put three gallon of hot water into a five gallon bucket.  Mix in the hot soapy water from step on and stir for a while.  Then add your cup of washing soda.  Keep stirring for a minute or two and then at the borax (if you're using it).  Stir for another couple of minutes and then let it sit overnight to cool.

When you wake up, the bucket should look like yucky slime...Now you are ready to do some laundry.  One measuring cup (ie-1 cup) of this will be roughly what you need to do a load of laundry.  So out of three gallons, you'll get about 48 loads of laundry.  

Enjoy :-)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mother's Day Pics

Poor Layla was sick on Mother's Day with a HORRIBLE cold that traveled like wildfire around our she never quite made it out of her pjs and the little sweater my mother made for her (but still insisted on wearing her "pearls"--just a little touch of class)...LOVE IT!  The top picture is her with my grandmother...who Layla just adores..and then the bottom is me with my little sicky :-)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day

Blogging in bed for the first time...WONDERFUL.  I think I must have slept horribly last night because I woke up around 2:45 and realized that my hubby had made his way to the couch :( Poor Neil.  I have a really yucky cold, so I'm starting to wonder if I was way...that can't be right because I know I am NOT a snorer :-)  I do, however, "thrash"around sometimes...which is probably what happened.  In any case, I woke up this morning and thought...I can blog in my pjs...GOOD TIMES!

Ahhhh...another Mother's second one as a mommy.  This is such a great time to reflect on all of my successful moments as a mommy--the times Layla has taught me about life, the times I have thought, "wow--I have this 'mommy thing' down," and the times that I made a last minute, crunch time decision with Layla and it worked out right.  Its also a time for me to think about the areas that I want to work on--the places that need help now or will need help as she quickly approaches TWO.  Its a time for me to stand in awe of God and how he has trusted me with such an amazing really makes me feel so small.  Its a time to think about my mommy and really thank God for the amazing woman she is and the sacrifices she made for our family.  Its a time for me to make a promise to be more patient with her and make sure she knows how much I adore her.  Its a time to think about Neil's mom and how grateful and blessed I am because she was such an amazing mom to him and the absolute BEST mother-in-law that I could have ever dreamed of.  Its a time to think about my grandma (or maw maw) and how many MANY life lessons I've learned from her and how I always adored her worn hands.  Its a time for me to think about--as crazy as this sounds--the mommy of the man Layla will fall in love with one day...I take a couple of extra minutes to really pray for her specifically.  Finally--its a time for me to think about all of my friends who added another noun to their life description..."mom"--the ones who have helped and encouraged me so much.  It makes me really wonder where I'd be without any one of these women...

What an amazing day!  I should get out of my pjs and put some make up on...I am DYING to really enjoy some time with Layla this morning!

I'll post some hot pics of my SECOND mother's day!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Movin on Up

Week wine (almost--but that's another blog for another time) red MICROWAVE...and thanks to my friend Michelle, I am getting rid of my makeup and opting for some Origins makeup. Fortunately I've never worn much, so I won't be making a huge investment.

Whew...I feel like a lot has happened since last I blogged :-)
Neil and I are in the process of deciding whether or not to buy a new right down the street from where we currently reside. This neighborhood is STRANGE, people. When Neil and I moved in about 3 years ago we felt like we moved onto Wisteria Lane...everyone play in the street...we have neighborhood house parties...very strange. That being said...generations of families live in this neighborhood. Adults who were raised here go off to school and get married and fight tooth and nail to get back into the neighborhood. Neil and I love this place. I have several other "mommy" friends who are great and their children are just about Layla's age. So, when a slightly larger house was put on the market last week...Neil and I talked and now the time..YIKES?! Its obviously more expensive...but I think we can do it...we'll see. We are definately trusting God on this one.

So in the mean time, we have to fix up our house in case we sell. The first step meant getting our floors refinished! They had almost 80 years of love on them that needed some extra attention. SO last Friday, we moved in with my parents for the day. Mom and dad are fortunate enough to work out of their dad is the most amazing photographer--he has a very patient and honest eye--the kind of honesty you hear in Bob Dylan's voice or see in an 80 year old man's hands--the kind you can't just duplicate (partial...nahhhh)...ANYWAY so they keep my little 3 year old nephew Bradyn. I brought Layla to their house on Friday morning and dad went nuts over her little dress...and I have to say, she was pretty stinking 
adorable. So we all went out to a field of poppies down the street and dad took some pictures of Layla. It was interesting...Bradyn definitely wanted in on the pictures, so it took some convincing to get him to move from directly in front of Layla to off camera. He and I picked flowers for his mommy, which worked wonders. So yeah, the picture to the side is one that dad took in the flowers...b-e-a-u-tiful. Can I just a side note. Layla LOVES that little Bradyn so much! Her little eyes light up when he comes around and even when I talk about him...its the sweetest thing!

One last thing on Layla--well two...she has figured out that my iPod plays music and that she rather enjoys her own personal music player. She LOVES music. So she has started "requesting" the iPod, after which she walks around the room with the ear pieces in her ear bobbing her little head. Sometimes she sings...and that is CLASSIC. I have a video, so once I figure out the video thing, I'll post it.  Second, Neil and I took Layla to vote yesterday...she even wore her red, white and blue (blue and white polka dot dress and pants...and red hair-HA). She pushed the little buttons on our computer screen and everything. I don't think she realized the gravity of what she was doing, but Neil and I were SO proud of her! Our amazing little patriot in the making.

Well...wish us luck on the new venture...I'll keep you all posted :-)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Little General's Last Stand :-)

WELL today marked the date of my very last class! WOW this semester flew by. I did end up showing Dr. Strangelove at an attempt to increase my face time in class. The students were a little confused and lost by the movie, as I sat in the back cracking up. I guess that movie just has a ton of dry humor.

So I got a note from a student today after she turned in her test. The note read: "Ms. Broere, Thank you so much for teaching my class. You made a hard class seem easy. I am blessed to have you as a teacher." Ohhh...that was so sweet. Then I thought, is this a sneaky attempt to cushion her grade, cause' its not going to work. I am not that easy--she could have at least brought chocolate or something too...HA! I'm kidding. Sweet letter...but she's stuck with her "C".

Layla and I just finished off another bottle of acidophilus. I can't believe how much Layla loves that stuff. She, literally, sucks it down. I honestly believe that little miracle in a bottle is how we made it through cold and flu season untouched (well--mommy got a cold but that's it). Anyone out there who isn't taking acidophilus...invest in some. It cured my pregnancy indigestion and reflux...and it has made for a very healthy family. Whole Foods carries it in their refrigerated section...blueberry is THE BEST! Beware...its addictive!