Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Just for WilyHacker...

who loves the Simpsons. Here I am in all my Simpson-yellow glory. Next time you see me on the street, I hope you'll say "hi".

Thanks to Jennwith2ns for cluing me in to the cool simpsonizeme site. I don't usually blog about what would I look like as (an Amazon woman, a Planet of the Apes character, or whatever other characterize yourself sites there might be). But with the new Simpsons movie just released and Wilyhacker's fascination with all things Simpson, I couldn't resist.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

I'm Back

Sorry for the unannounced lull in posts. Between a big conference that I was involved in (decorations & gifts - wee ha!) and a five-day camping vacation, I've been largely absent from the blogosphere. But now I'm back and feelin' good. We arrived home on Thursday night and had just enough time to get most of the laundry done before packing the three girls off with their grandparents for the weekend! Life is good.

Can I tell you something that surprised me this weekend? I missed my kids. Not a ton, but like when friends invited us for an impromptu dinner tonight. My girls would have loved to have been there for some spontaneous fun with their friends. And I wished they could have been there. And church was easier, but different, sans kids. Otherwise...we had plenty of fun without them. And they had as much fun as three girls and their three second-cousins could have on a lake with their grandparents.

The other thing that surprised me lately: I'm a little sad about Timid Daughter starting first grade this year. It will be only the Uber-princess & I all day, most days. No sister coming home at lunchtime. It feels like the beginning of the end. On the other hand, sending Little Miss History off to first grade was great. It was the beginning of something else, something like freedom. I welcomed it. And I was sure with T.D. it would be more of the same, only better. But it's not.

Mind you, on the two mornings that I will drop the uber-princess off at preschool (her first year as well), I expect I'll be doing the freedom dance. Two hours to myself? Ah, the bliss! Grocery shopping...alone! Time at Starbucks, just me and my laptop! I'm nearly ready to count the days. But if I do, then it will be that much closer to First Grade. And I'm just not ready for that.

Monday, July 16, 2007


Note to self: when going camping, don't forget to bring the silverware that you took out of the camper for that big Christmas dinner. Camping might be "roughing it", but eating cereal and chili without spoons is asking a bit much.

Note to self #2: when taking three kids on a four-hour car ride, it might be a good idea to bring along a little more than one coloring book apiece to occupy them. Like how about those Game Boys their Grandma got them? Or books on CD? Or even car bingo. After all, the stakes for asking "how long until we get there?" are much higher than for trying to spot another cow if there are no squares to cover.

Note to self #3: when wanting to sight see, don't take three kids and a reluctant husband who's all too eager to call a barely functioning historical village with two covered bridges a good substitute for touring the Covered Bridge Capital of the World. It's kinda funny and makes for a good story later, but it's still real disappointing to realize how incredibly dull your interests are to your family. Go on your own. They'll never know what they missed and you'll never know how much they didn't.

Note to self #4: towels. Bring lots of them when camping. It's always sure to rain and if it doesn't they're still good for lots of things. Like drying dishes. And silverware... if you remember to bring it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

3 Fish & a Wedding

My sister-in-law got married this past weekend. The uber-princess was in her glory as the princess flower girl. She relished every minute of it from the lacy, twirly dress to the ride in the limo to...just being a true princess for a day. As I drove her to the bride's house before the wedding, she commented to me, "I'm so cute". And of course she was right, as many people reminded her all day long, especially after her adorable trip down the aisle carefully dropping the flower petals. So it was rough for her having to leave the reception - a total Cinderella at midnight moment. All of the splendor and finery were about to vanish and she cried miserably. That is, she cried until I pointed out that the tears would leave marks on her dress, at which point she turned them off in an instant. No need to ruin a perfect princess dress.

At the reception there were betta fish swimming in bowls in the center of the table (the bride has a thing for bettas). It was a neat way to decorate, but guess what the parents of the bride (my childrens' grandparents) sent home with us? Not one, but THREE betta fish - one for each granddaughter. Which means now A Musing Mom is left caring for Diamond the teal fish, Flower Girl the red one (guess whose that is), and Tuna Burger the blue betta. My track record thus far has been less than stellar in the betta department, but we'd been considering replacing Rhubarb in hopes we'd learned our lesson. Now he's been more than replaced. And so far all three have survived three days and one partial water change. But Flower Girl is not so active today. And Diamond is hovering near the bottom of his tank. And Tuna Burger rushes around in a huff when you get near his bowl.Oh, the worries of caring for three fish.

Would a dog be easier?

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Up, Up, and Away

Yesterday I got the opportunity that most people will never have in their lifetime. I went in a hot air balloon - on TV!

Here's the story: like we have done every year for the past six or seven years, my family got up at 5:30am and drove over to the Lisle Eyes to the Skies Balloon Festival. We go to watch the balloons launch or land (depending on the direction of the wind). And it is a ton of fun! Well, when we got there we learned that the ground was too wet for them to do much of anything (the balloons are kind of like tents, except that once the sun is shining the wind picks up so they can't just be left out in the sun to dry before packing away in a bag). But there was a pilot sitting in his basket and he motioned us out on the field (a rare treat). Along with a TV cameraman.

This pilot was a real nice guy and told us all sorts of interesting stuff about ballooning. When he was done he invited anyone who wanted to climb in the basket for a picture. So my kids climbed in. Makes for a good change in my scrapbook pages from the annual shots of huge balloons in the sky and my kids all tiny beneath.

After that we wandered over to another balloon team where they'd actually spread out a balloon (were they going to towel it off after?). There we saw not only a cameraman, but also the local NBC weatherman, Andy Avalos, reporting on the festival. It was fun to listen to him do the weather update in front of a tiny screen showing the weather maps.

Then they put a big fan near the mouth of the balloon and began inflating it with cool air (standard procedure to get it ready for a hot inflation). Once that was done there was suddenly a flurry of activity. They were inviting people to walk into the balloon (not the basket) to give perspective on how huge these things are. So Timid Daughter, Little Miss History and I took off our shoes and walked on in. About twenty of us were in there. And we were on TV!

So there! I've been in a hot air balloon (without ever leaving the ground, thankfully). How about you?