Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Why Do Dogs Have Black Lips?

Nathan is an extremely inquisitive, extremely wittty, and EXTREMELY TALKATIVE boy. Those of you who spend any amount of time with him will agree with me, right? Yesterday he asked me, "Why do dogs have black lips?" Hmmmmm. I have no idea. Do you have an answer for my boy??

Monday, September 29, 2008

Spider Web...How Cool!!

I went outside early this morning to find this gorgeous spider web. Yesterday I did a bunch of gardening and tore down many webs. This guy found his way out of the "green" can and spun a beautiful web. It was also foggy, so the dew was all over. Maybe most people think spiders are gross, but pre-school teachers get so excited over bugs and stuff. I only wish I could have taken the entire web to school to show my kids today...they would have loved it!!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

I Smell Bacon!

I recently discovered this great way to cook bacon. We all like bacon occassionally at our house, but I would never buy it because it made such a huge mess in my kitchen. A couple of months ago, my Mom and I experimented with cooking it in the oven. It works GREAT! No mess and it's all done at one time. Just cover a large baking sheet with crinkled foil, lay the bacon out flat, put into a 400 degree oven for about 30 or so minutes. EASY! This morning I put it in the oven and then made an entire loaf of French Toast. It was delicious and now we have leftovers for this week.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Before and After ~ Master Bedroom

Our new mattress is WAY taller than our old mattress. I have to use a stool to get onto the bed or take a running leap, I am not kidding! Anyway, I had to get new bedding, made some new pillows, made a blanket for the end of the bed, and re-did a chair for the corner of the room. I spent less that $100 on a new down-alternative comforter, (king size even though the bed is queen) a textured blanket to put on top, and fabric and bead trim for the pillows. It looks similiar, but much better! Check it out and tell me what you think. I love having white and black bedding.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Homework Time

Luckily my boys USUALLY do their homework without much fuss. I hear parents talking about spending hours at the table with crying kids trying to get homework completed...we haven't really experienced that. Nathan usually spends 30 or so minutes, often at Gayle's (his unbelievably awesome babysitter whom we adore) house on my work days, right after school when I pick him up, or at 7:00 p.m. It is his choice depending on how he feels and his schedule for the afternoon. Kyle has way more homework, of course, and pretty much does it on his own. He asks me to proof-read papers periodically, but he mostly takes care of himself. As long as he's getting good grades, which he does, I just let him do his thing. He has really hard classes this year, so he's already had a couple of late nights of studying and finishing projects.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wordless Wednesday #7- Outside the Garage Door

Dialog between the jacuzzi repairman and myself...

Man- "Hey Lady, how many kids do you have?"
Dana- "Two boys and One husband."
Man- "That's a lot of shoes and hats for only two kids and one husband."
Dana- "Ya think??!!"

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


No post today or yesterday. I have still not finished the laundry from our vacation and my flowers are dying for a drink of water. Yesterday was Darrell's birthday (Happy Birthday Love!!) and I did not get him a gift. We spent most of Sunday at baseball games. My house is a mess (thank God that Miguel is coming on Thursday) and I have about 20 phone calls to return. My desk in my classroom is piled with paperwork. I am going to spend the next couple of days catching up...so, until then...adios amigos.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me

Last night my Mom and Larry (with a little help from Darrell) had a surprise get-together for my birthday at their house. My BFF from high school, Kristin, was there with her family and Doug and Kelly (our dear friends who were on our blog before) were all there along with Mom, Larry, Kyle, Nate, Darrell and I. My sister and her family and some other family friends were invited but were all sick. Yucky illnesses are going around everywhere! We had a great time (even though I was dead set against a "party") and had yummy Mexican food and cake. Mom made the best guacamole...that's usually Tanya's job!

The camera battery went dead (tired from the Alaska trip) before the candle-blowing-out-present thing. I did get a couple of pictures of Kristins darling kids. I know the photos aren't great, it's hard to take pictures of moving targets. This is Genevieve (2) and Nolan (4)...they cracked us up the whole night. I don't think they realized they were the entertainment, but we were all happy!!

Thanks for the nice gifts...you guys are awesome!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Back on Dry Land

Darrell and I in front of Mendenhall Glacier...so gorgeous!!
A waterfall in Ketchikan. This is my actual birthday and I feel so lousy I could barely stand up.
This is our new friend Judy. She and her friend Linda were some of our "tablemates" for dinner. Judy and I hit it off right away. We both love shrimp and chocolate...
The dinner before we went ashore in Victoria, BC they sang Happy Birthday to me and gave me a little cake. What you can't see is that there are about 12 waiters, wine somaliers, maitre'd's and assistant waiters singing! There were 2100 guests on the ship and 975 staff members.
We disembarked the ship yesterday around 7:30...after having one more buffet breakfast, man I loved those homemade waffles!! We walked around Pike Marketplace in Seattle for a few hours and the were headed home. Our plane was late and our luggage took almost 45 minutes, but Larry, Nate, and Molly were waiting for us...and we were SO glad to see them!! Mom had cleaned the house, done the laundry, and had dinner in the oven. We cannot thank Mom and Larry enough for taking care of our "babies." I hope you know how much we love and appreciate all you do for us. It made our vacation stress-free to know the kids were taken care of...probably better than when we're home!!!

This is just a couple of my favorite photos from the trip. We took hundreds of photos...this is just a small sample. We had a FANTASTIC time, but it's always great to be home.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hubbard Glacier, Mendenhall Glacier, and Ketchikan

We are having an AWESOME time in Alaska. One huge bummer is that I have been sick for the past 2 days and laid in bed most of yesterday...yes that was my actual 40th birthday, laying in bed in a 6 feet by 6 feet cabin. We did go into Ketchikan we toured the beautiful city and went to a Totem Pole village. It was fascinating. The day before we were in Juneau and toured the Mendenhall Glacier and a Salmon Hatchery. It is amazing to Darrell and I how environmentally friendly they are up here and in Seattle. It is also really weird to be walking and look up to see a Bald Eagle. Beautiful! We'll give you more photos when we get home. Tonight we'll be in Victoria, British Columbia...we're excited about that. We're taking a double decker bus tour throughout the city. The weird part is that we're there from 7 p.m. to midnight!

We miss the boys but are having a great time. We eat every hour or so...I am not exaggerating...Darrell has been keeping up with his workouts!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008


We are sailing away from Sitka, Alaska at the moment and we're heading for Hubbard Glacier. We have already eaten enough meals to last until October!! The ship is gorgeous and the staff is extremely attentive. Last night I dropped my napkin on the floor at dinner time and before I could reach down at pick it up the waiter handed me a clean napkin and took the dirty one off of the floor. I will miss them when I go home!! Today in Sitka is was raining and cold. We still went into town and walked around for awhile and saw St. Michaels Cathedral, took in the sights and a few shops. We were lucky that yesterday was a beautiful day during out "at sea" day. I know this is a bit choppy, but I am just typing like I am thinking because the internet access is very expensive and we have only a few minutes until the ventriloquist show!!

By the way, if you are turning 40 and you wanna feel young, I would highly reccomend this ship. Darrell and I are the "spring chickens" onboard. I feel lucky that I do not need a walker, wheelchair, motorized scooter, or oxygen tank!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Shana and William

You know how you don't know how much you miss someone until you see them again after a long period of time. Well, I missed Shana SO MUCH... we could almost read each other's minds in elementary, Jr. and High School. We were together most of the time. I thought after 17 or so years that I would not feel like I knew her as well as I used too. It was so weird, the second I saw her, it was like I just seen her yesterday! We sat at dinner for 3+ hours and did not have a second of silence. Her husband William is exactly the type of person I hoped she would find, a genuine person with a GREAT personality, just like Shana. They are hysterical. I laughed until I cried. We talked about so much "stuff" that I am still processing it. Actually, the motto of the night was "what is talked about at the dinner table, stays at the dinner table!!!"

Thanks Shana and William for one of the best dinners we've had in a long time. It was very generous of you to buy our dinner. Remember, it's our turn next time!! PLEASE come and visit us soon. Love you guys!!

We're in SEATTLE!!

Mom and Larry arrived at our house at 4:30 this morning to take over kid duty (thanks Mom) and drive us to the airport (thanks Larry) and we were off!! We had an uneventful flight and got to the hotel by 10:00. We dumped our suitcases and walked down to Pike Place Market, not knowing what we were doing or where we were going. It was so gorgeous and fun. They had rows and rows of fish markets, produce stands, fresh flowers, crafts, and organic everything!! At one fish market the employees were throwing huge fish back and forth. I bought some strawberry vanilla hemp granola...I had to force myself not to buy fresh flowers...gorgeous sunflowers for $1 each!!!! Then, we had lunch at Chowder. SO delicious and quaint. It was off the beaten path and mostly locals were eating lunch, that's why we chose to eat there.

Tonight we're meeting my high school friend Shana and her husband for dinner. I haven't seen her since shortly after our wedding, so I am anxious to catch up with her!! For those of you who know Shana, I'll try to post some pictures of dinner later tonight.

We miss the boys and puppy...but are having a great time!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Wordless Wednesday #6 ~ Good Luck Grammy and Grampy

A 9 page guide for Grammy and Grampy. Good luck...leaving early a.m.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Nathan's Sick

Can you believe the timing? We are leaving in 3 days for vacation and Nathan started feeling sick on Saturday and now has a "goopy" nose, "barky" cough, and slight fever. Darrell was able to work from the house today to stay with him as he couldn't go to school. I HATE it when my kids are sick. Hopefully everyone will feel great in 3 days and Darrell, Kyle, and I won't get sick. Please God...we really need to be healthy.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Every Dog Needs a Boy...or Two!!

The boys have both begged us for a dog for years. Kyle began asking long before Nathan was even born. I always said NO. We were moving into a different house. We were having a new baby. Kyle was diagnosed with severe asthma and allergies. We just got new carpet. I always had a reason, but finally I decided that Kyle will be graduating from high school in a few years and we should have a dog. After a long and very dramatic search for the "perfect" dog, we finally found her. We're happy to have her as part of our family...she fits right in! Now, I don't know what we ever did without her. If she would stop peeing and pooping in the house, she would be perfect!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Boys...then Girls

As most of you know, my boys are VERY social! Hmmm, wonder where they get that! 8-) Anyway, we always have their friends here at the house and with us, which I love! Kyle's friends actually put up with Nathan and include him in their activities and Nathan's friends think Kyle is "so cool" and he will occassionally hang out with them and play catch or xBox. So, the good news is many of their friends are girls. Since there is so much testosterone in this house it is so fun to have the girls around. The photos are of our "field trip" before school started to the Rainbow store and Reptropolis with Manda. She is here or Kyle is at her house a huge amount of time. She is darling and has a great family. Jackie also went with us to dinner at the harbor. She's a great girl too! See, so Grandpa Dino was right when he told me, " if you have the boys, the girls will be there eventually!" He was so smart...how did he know???

Friday, September 5, 2008

Fruits and Veggies

This is the produce I purchased at the market last week. When I was putting it away I thought it looked so pretty! The nectarines and grapes are delicious this year...I'm hungry.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I Had a GREAT Day!

It was a great day for me. First, Miguel and Esther were here to clean my house. I worked my butt off yesterday to get everything orderly and laundry finished so that the whole house is clean, tidy, and laundry all done. Then, I went to a PTA Executive Board meeting and we had so many people show up...it was awesome. We got so much done and we have a fantastic group of people on our board this year. I left and went to get my nails done and a pedicure...I have to look good for vacation ya know. Next, to Ruby's Diner for lunch with Barbie and Michelle, two of my very dear friends whom I haven't seen in a long while. It was great to catch up with them...and sit for 2 1/2 hours! After lunch, I ran home to meet the dog groomer who trimmed and bathed Molly Mo...she looks too cute. I went to pick up Nate from school (he actually ended up going to a friends house to play) and picked up the high school carpool. Larry called and offered to come over and buy Kyle a brand new bat. Thanks Grampy!! Hello, does it get any better??? Now, I have to pick up Nathan from Dwight's house and drop Kyle off at baseball practice. I do not make dinner when Miguel cleans, so I guess we have to go out to dinner!! I'm telling you, all I need is some delicious chocolate and it would be perfect!

So, what did you do today??

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

4th Grader and a Sophomore

Nathan started 4th grade today and Kyle is now a Sophomore. They both looked SO cute this morning! Both reported a great day...Nathan was so happy to see all of his friends, he's Mr. Social. He was happy that he didn't have to do any math work today!! Kyle was excited to get "the best" teachers and he is predicting a great year. Kyle has really hard classes this year...5 academic college prep classes and a baseball class.

Monday, September 1, 2008

A New Mattress...Finally!

Today is the last day of summer vacation. What did I do? I spent all morning in my classroom trying to get it ready...my friend Carole came to help me...now, that's a great friend...actually she's my Supervisor!! Then, Darrell and I went to Sears to buy a new mattress! I know what you're thinking...those party animals. Our old mattress was a wedding gift from Mom and Larry and we just had our 17 year anniversary, so it was time.

So, what did YOU do on your last day of summer vacation? Can you top my day?