Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Smelly Cat

Soooooo.....Last end of summer/beginning of fall, The Mister had left the car outside and the window's down overnight.  Not the end of the world since we live in the middle of nowhere. We did wake up to a car FULL of flies. 

No biggie.

However, over the next week or so I started feeling something move inside the drivers side seat.  At first it really freaked me out.  As the weeks went on, I worried I might just be going crazy.  We all know it's bound to happen, I just didn't realize it would happen so soon.  I sheepishly asked the Mister one night if he ever felt it too.  He confirmed I was going crazy.  

Then, one night, we were driving back from the train station after picking Rhiannon up.  The Mister was driving.  All of a sudden he sat straight up and said something along the lines of 

"What in the hell was that?"  

And then I knew. 
I was NOT crazy.  

There was just a mouse who lived inside our drivers car seat back. 

If you think about it, it was a very smart move by the mouse.  The kids constantly kept him fed, there were no predators after him and he was always warm.  

I didn't mind sharing with him as long as I didn't have to see him.

On Sunday we went to the Pride Parade.  My car sat in the sun all day.  When we got back to it, there was definitely a smell.  A dead, decaying smell.  My sister and I both commented on how disgusting it was and how it was probably a rat in the alley or maybe some food the girls threw on the floor and I missed.

I detailed the car.

It wasn't food.

It's our mousy friend.  
He died.  Inside our car seat.

Although I have been telling him for almost a year that we need another car, The Mister has been putting it off saying 

"It isn't  necessary yet, we can still wait, we might not need two cars, yada yada yada....."  

I'm going to have to thank our little mouse friend.  
He has changed my husbands mind.

The Mister is going car shopping today.

Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Play It Again

The big girl is about to go away for a couple of weeks.

To say she will be missed is an understatement.

Enjoying a summer rain storm.

Every time she hears this song on the radio the volume goes up a few octaves.

So, obviously, this is for her.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Be My Friend!

This weekend we noticed our very scary guard dog sitting at the very edge of the fenced in area of our yard.

After a few minutes we realized he was sitting there watching four deer eat, not even ten feet in front of him.

He's so lonely out here he is trying to get the local wildlife to be friends with him.

Good work, buddy.

Good work.

(Better luck next time.)

Friday, June 13, 2014

That's A Wrap!

Rhiannon's big end of year recital for dance is tomorrow.

It's in a real theater.
A big, 2000 seat, beautiful and ornate theater.

I'm so excited for her.  
She is going to have such an amazing time!

Clara, 4, with her homemade Dr. Seuss face.  Rhiannon, 5, with her homemade Dr. Seuss hat.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key

Sometimes I feel like my husband doesn't "get" me at all.

Like, the other day, when I asked him to go to the store to pick up some bread and he returns with this....

Now, I am going to assume you  are an adult that is capable of making your own choices so I am not going to judge you if you enjoy eating white bread.  

However, The Mister should know better.  
(It's only been 7 years now!)  

Never in my whole life have I bought white bread.  Not even when I was starving to death and could barely afford food did I buy the white bread! It's so bad for you and it tastes so gross.  

As someone who used to make homemade bread with me every week, he, of all people, should know better.

My little sister, who is staying with us for the summer, was also confused by his purchase.  We concluded that he must have fallen a victim to is called "Mother's" after all.

In other "you're an awesome parent" news, I did this to my baby. 

I swear I had good intentions.  I was JUST TALKING about how you should always spend money on haircuts, because, obviously.  

But she wanted her bangs trimmed.  So I was just going to trim them a little and at the very last second she jerked her head.  When I asked her why she did it she said it was because she was afraid I was going to "cut her face off."  

Fair enough.

If I thought someone was going to cut my face off I would probably jerk my head too.  

She thinks the end result is FABULOUS!  
Thank god she's little.

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, June 6, 2014

High Schooler

It's been one hell of a roller coaster ride.

Nine years down.

Four more to go.

I know that with our help, your brains and all of our determination, you will go farther in your life than your wildest dreams. 

 I can't wait to watch how you grow over the next four years!

First and last day of 8th grade.
Happy Friday!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Baseball Wars, Round Two

We live in a house divided.  

It is no secret that I am a HUGE Cubs fan.  I always have been.  (Love you Grandpa!)  I always will be.  The Mister is a huge White Sox fan.  Since before Clara was born, we had been thinking of ways to get her to love our own team.

 Between Wriggly field vs. US Cellular, US Cellular wins at being family friendly with no contest, so that is where we go when we have family baseball outings.  

At first, I thought The Mister would win Clara's baseball loving heart because of this.  I am happy to report, while she was waving her White Sox foam finger the other night, she was also chanting

"GO CUBS, GO!"  

 Keep it up, Clara!  You are making your Mama proud!
Especially when you make faces like that.

You know it's a family friendly place when your teenager AND your preschooler both love it!

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

And We Danced / Rhiannon is 14!

She is the big 1-4!

Last Thursday, two of her friends and I pulled off an epic surprise party.  I told them to take care of the guest list and  I would take care of the rest.  We prayed for great weather, (and it came!) I bought a ton of food, sodas, a pinata - if you ever been to any of her childhood parties you will get why - and of course an ice cream cake.  Because my crazy child hates cake.

  The weather cooperating was especially helpful because those gals delivered on that guest list, about 40 teenagers!  


A few days before the party I had set up a hair appointment for Rhiannon that was to start right after school.  On our way there I told her The Mister was going to take us to the city for a fancy dinner (something we try to do often).  

She's grown so much this year. I told her we were just going to run to the store to get her a nice outfit and shoes.  I made sure to bring my make up along so she could be completely ready before we got home, because, you know, we were in SUCH a HURRY!  

(I even dressed up to the part, sporting a fancy dress and heels.)

She had NO CLUE I was actually being a big, fat liar.  

Since we were leaving "as soon as we got back" she was dressed up with her make up and hair all done up cute.  

It was fabulous.  She looked fabulous!

She was so surprised when she opened the garage door.  She screamed in terror and looked at me with an expression I will never forget.  

Since today is Rhiannon's official birthday I am dedicating this song to her, and since it is her fourteenth birthday here are fourteen reasons why!

I'm adding where my comments are directed at in the song.

I love you, my most favorite sweetheart!


  1. You probably don't remember, but we used to dance around the house to this song together.  Like, a lot.
  2. 0:01  This looks like a town you would love to end up living in. 
  3. 0:06  Look!  It's The Mister's dream car!  
  4. 0:32  I can see a Drive-In Theater experience complete with a terrible zombie movie being a great night out for you.  
  5. 0:37  Um....That man in the watermelon shirt!  Purely  awesome! I'm going to make us matching ones...and a Melodica, because YES.
  6. 1:10  That lady in the black dress dances JUST LIKE YOUR MOM! (She must be cool.)
  7. 1:20   The band dances like your mom, too.  See?  Proof your mom is cool.....
  8. 1:54    Unintentionally locking your friends in the trunk == another scenario I can see you getting yourself into.  Lucky for you white lightening has that handy glow-in-the-dark trunk release pull!  
  9. 2:47    Old man Hawk Harrelson look-a-like has FAILED at his rescue mission!  
  10. 3:15    That love between the concession stand boy and the girl in the yellow shirt.  Get ready for lots of awkward moments like that!  Lol.  Yay teenage experiences!  
  11.  3:24    Everyone is dancing like your mom now! 
  12. 3:37    Stereotypical motorcycle gang scaring a nerdy boy. 
  13. 3:46     Kicking things usually (wont) solve your problems.  Unless your friends are stuck in the trunk, that is.
  14. 3:53     The zombie party has officially turned into a dance party.  

(For your birthday, obviously!) 
Happy Wednesday 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Meat Cupcakes

The Mister hates cake.  
And cookies.  
And chocolate.  

But he loves meatloaf!

In the last seven years I have made lots of improvised "cakes" for him to blow the candles out for his birthday.  He calls me ridiculous every year.  However I am a firm believer in celebrating birthdays correctly!  

So far he's had watermelon cut into cake form, mashed potatoes molded into a cake form, a meatloaf cake, a shot lit on fire that he had to blow out and now this year he has had meatloaf birthday cupcakes.  

The Mister's 
Meatloaf Cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 lbs Hamburger
  • 1 lb Sausage (I used Jimmy Dean's sage sausage)
  • 1 M red onion chopped
  • 1 M leek chopped
  • 4 celery stalks chopped
  • 5-6 baby portobello mushrooms, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 C crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Chipotle Chile powder
  • 1 T Chicago steak seasoning
  • Mashed potatoes (made however you like.  I like to put a ton of garlic in mine)

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mince/chop all of your vege's.  I keep mine bigger.  It adds more texture.  (Meatloaf is not my favorite thing to eat.....)
  3. Mix everything together in a big bowl.
  4. Line your cupcake pan with liners.  I used the "texas cupcake muffin pan" so our meatcakes could be extra large.  (Meeeaaatcaaaaake!)
  5. Mold the meatloaf mixture into the pans and bake them for 45 minutes.
  6. After they are done cooking, put them on a cookie sheet to cool.  (I pre-made these with the intent to heat them up later.) . 
  Just a heads up, the liners you put on the meatcakes will not be pretty

Once they are cool enough to handle, put your mashed potato frosting on them.

Since I made these in the morning, I heated them up again by putting it in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.  

These would also be great for work lunches!

*The Mister is actually older then the candles on his cake imply.
*He's also really enjoying his serenade as you can tell in this picture.

Birthday Madness!!!!!

Happy Monday!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Main Street Market

I needed to get away.

The girls did too. 

The necklaces the girls are wearing here was picked out at one of the booths from Main Street Market.
Clara went with resin roses, Rhiannon went with a native american bust.
 (Unfortunately I don't remember the shops names where we got them.)

One of my dear friends was set to participate in this amazing little festival called Main Street Market in Rockford, Illinois.  

Cuteness abounds.

It was only a two hour drive, the girls and I had never been there before so there was new scenery to experience and we could shop for insanely cute stuff. (see below...)

I'm told this AMAZING painting I got for a steal is in fact "creepy".

I beg to differ.
This dog begs to differ, too.

Insanely cute stuff ==Right up our alley!

It was held at the Midwest Village Museum.  So there were fun artifacts like this hand pumped well.  I told the girls that there was one of these on the farm I grew up on.   They told me " that kind of make's you ancient, Mom."

After Rhiannon showed Clara how this crazy ancient contraption worked she, of course, had to have a try as well.

I'll give you one guess as to what happened.
If you grew up with one of these I bet you already know.
Clara grabbed that handle, pulled down with all of her might and bonked herself really good right on top of her head.  

That pretty much ended the festival fun for us.

However we weren't ready to head home yet.  We asked a local if there was a beach or a lake we could go wander about for a little while.  He sent us to a beach about 10 minutes away.

  We got to the "beach".  
It looked and smelled like a cow pond with some sand around it.  

A cow pond beach they were going to charge $3 a person to go on, mind you.  

Looking for snakes.
Because they want me to have a heart attack.

We said "no thanks" and decided to explore the forest near it instead.

Where the faeries live.
We noticed a TON of large hawks in the area.  After walking into the woods we also noticed there were a TON of chipmunks scuttling about.

I did NOT tell the girls the connection between the hawks and chipmunks.  I did tell this little guy that he needed a better hiding spot.

All in all it was a pretty magical day.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Once upon a time there was a boy and a girl who REALLY liked to drink beer.  This duo didn't like to drink just any beer, though, they were more of what you would call "beer snobs".  

If you have ever shared this duo's love of delicious beer, then you will know that it is not a frugal love to have.

One day the boy proposed that they start making their own delicious craft beer at home for only a fraction of the cost.  The girl agreed but secretly didn't think they would make anything drinkable, let alone delicious.  

She was soon put in her place as the duo made many delicious IPA's, Belgium style ales and quite possibly the most delicious Pumpkin Brew known to man.  

Northern Brewer is the company we used the most.
Then one fateful day, the duo was told that one of them had been stricken down with the worst ailment any beer snob could ever receive.  

Celiac Disease.  

What does that mean?
No.  More.  Delicious.  Beer.

Since then, they (we) have been trying other forms of 

"gluten free beer".

Gluten free beer is all terrible.  
So we have moved on to trying different types of mead. 

One in particular has blown us away.
This is a mango black pepper mead.  
It is incredibly delicious.  
It is also $12 a bottle

What exactly goes in mead?
That would be honey, yeast, honey, honey, yeast and then more honey.

Since we don't necessarily want to hand our entire paychecks over for a few delicious drinks we are back at our brewing business. Only now we are trying to recreate this wonderful mango black pepper taste.  We started brewing this over two months ago.  I am hoping we can make delicious mead as easily as we made delicious beer.  Bottling starts next week.

Wish us luck!
Brew baby, brew!

Today is The Mister's birthday!  
If you see him today make sure you give him 32 pinches!

Before we went to bed last night I tried asking him what his favorite song ever was. First he said it was this really shitty rage against the machine song, but he only liked it for one line which he sings in his head while being told what to do by *someone.  (*most likely me.)

The lyric?  
"&;%#$ you I wont do what you tell me!"

I told him I was super embarrassed to be associated with him at the moment and to try again.  I told him he has to like something that wasn't god awful terrible. 

Then he made me listen to Tupac for the next hour.

Happy Birthday Baby!
I love you!!!!

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Spring Has Arrived

Happy belated Mother's Day!

Clara's garden plot.  The mushroom top of her birdbath broke and she refuses to let us replace it.
I'm always spoiled on Mother's day.  I'm not allowed to do any of the cleaning, which is nice, but in reality it just means the next day I wake up to this.....

Can you relate?  

This year The Mister and the girls gave me a few new wind-chimes to hang on my hammock trees.  I've wanted to have a bottle/wind-chime tree for years now. I'm glad it's becoming a reality! 

I strongly believe that swaying in a hammock while listening to the soft tinkling of the wooden and brass chimes while looking up at pretty hanging colored bottles is something you should do at least once in your life.  

Since the weather has finally decided to become agreeable, The Mister and I have been stupid busy trying to keep up with the park, I mean the yard, we are now responsible for.  Trust me when I say it is a full time job. 

However, I am not complaining because spring is my absolute favorite time each year.  Here are a few reasons why......

Lilac bushes in full bloom...

Our ornamental weeping willow looking like it grew a big ol head of funky looking hair....

Window boxes filled with flowers......

And entire days spent outdoors.

Happy Monday!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Define "Normal"

 The Mister is finally working normal hours, so hopefully this means we can start having normal days again.

This is normal, right?

Happy Monday!

Friday, April 4, 2014


Clara has decided that we should change Buehrle's name to Cheetah.

This means she now stands there and screams 

"Cheetah!  Cheetah! Cheetah!  Cheetah!"

She yells this over and over and over again at Buehrle who stands there with his head cocked from one side to the other with the most confused look on his face wondering why his most favorite person sounds so damn angry all while wondering what-or-who the hell cheetah is.


I decided to divert her attention with a big old box of rice and some kitchen utensils.

Worked like a charm!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Monday marked The Mister and I's second wedding anniversary.  

2nd year cotton gift = best hammock ever!
Also, it was REALLY bright out that day!

My mother was down to help watch the kids over the weekend.  She and I both agreed that it feels like our marriage has been a lot longer then two years.  

Our little tree climber helped us out a lot in hanging the hammock up!
The Mister and I had a nice little city-getaway together, but we both ended up wanting to cut it a little short so we could enjoy some time with both of our children, which is a rarity in our life.  

I have been adamant on following the "traditional" wedding gift guide.  I think it is a fun way to stick in a certain genre of  a gift.  

The Mister says it's silly, (especially since year 14 is ivory which is obviously illegal and terribly immoral,) however I think he can use his imagination on that year to bend the rules a bit!

I had some hand made bag boards made for The Mister.
If you are in the market for an awesome gift, to you or someone else, please consider contacting
The Unemployment Project
on etsy or facebook.  It was a painless experience with beautiful results.  And if you are looking for a great 2nd anniversary gift, the actual bags are cotton, so it all works!

It is my hope that The Mister and I can continue to be the best example for what our children should strive for in their own personal relationships, when that time comes.

We totally kicked his ass in best out of three.

I hope my girls will find a person who compliments their personalities and respects them as a whole.  

I want them to only give their time to someone who loves them, protects them and holds them dear.  I want them to know that their partner will not disrespect, or even more let anyone else disrespect them in any way. 

I hope they know their self worth enough to only want a person who will hold them in the highest regard. 

Well Mister, I made you promise me 50 good years, so here's to 48 more.  I love you, you crazy old man, you! 

The Mister and I's wedding song

Happy Wednesday!