Friday, November 28, 2008

New Hat

Alli got a new hat from her aunt. Unexpected and very loved. She has worn it almost everyday for a week.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Twelve Year Olds

It's Sunday and I'm sick. I made it through the first hour of church and then had to head home. The good thing about my loss of energy is that I have time to slow down and catch up on my blog reading, which of course, prompts me to post.

A word of caution - this will be the very random thoughts of a mother.

Gavin is almost 12. I remember my neighbor commenting about her twelve year old and stating that she cracked her up all the time from the things she'd say. I don't know what it is, maybe it's a switch in their cognitive development, but it's so true.

He teases our neighbor, a little five year old girl, all the time. He claims he's going to marry her just to make her mad. She responds negatively to this attention, which only prompts Gavin to continue with more diligence. She usually "breaks up" with him and makes him walk the school halls alone. Secretly, I think she likes this attention. We were all at her house the other day when the kids came home from school. They were whooping and hollering that this little girl was pinching Gavin's butt all the way up the stairs. When her mom got after her saying that isn't something we do to the neighbor boys, Gavin smiled and piped up, "It's okay...she's just showing me how she feels."

He was also teasing the sister of this five year old. She's Gavin's age and is over at our house all the time to hang out with Alli. She had an otter pop, which Gavin stole and held high above his head. Despite all of her attempts, she wasn't tall enough to reach her treat. I told her a sure-fire way to get that otter pop was to threaten to kiss Gavin if he didn't give it up. To my surprise, she actually did threaten Gavin with a kiss, to which he responded, "Pucker up!"

It must be the age, because this same girl was with Allison picking up some thread for me at the nearby fabric store. I sent them with my cell phone in case they had any questions. Ten minutes after they had left, I got a call on my phone. It was Alli's friend pretending to be an associate at the fabric store. And I quote: "Hi, this is Jo-Ann's Fabric Store. We have a couple of girls here who claim an acquaintance with you. They have been caught shoplifting and we'll need you to come pick them up as soon as possible." I don't know, maybe it was the way she said it, but I laughed and laughed.

The other day Gavin came home from school quite upset. I had substitute taught for a fifth grade class. One of the kids had been bad mouthing me after school about how mean I had been to his class. This particular kid was a real punk. Gavin warned him to stop, but he proceeded to get worse and worse. At about the point when the kid called me a B****, Gavin swung back his fist and hit the kid between the eyes, on the bridge of his nose, knocking him down and making him cry. Gavin was the hero at our house that day and even the principal supported him on that one.

I was tickling him a few nights ago to try and cheer him up. When I moved to his arm pits he yelled out, "Mom, not my arm pits! Those are private and I NEED my hairs for P.E.! I gave him a puzzled look. "What? They make me manly."

Between the off-the-wall comments and the quirky jokes, or even the notes from girls I continue to find in pants pockets, twelve years old is an age to look forward to.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Last weekend we stole the kids from school and took them to California. The idea was to surprise their Aunt Barbie for her birthday and in return, surprise the kids with a trip to see their aunt in Northern Cali. Saturday was spent at Six Flags, a definate highlight for Gavin and true to Allison's instinct, she stayed planted firmly on the ground most of the time.

It started with a clue, followed by nine more with the intent to have them try and guess where we were going. Each clue had a letter or two that was bolded and capitalized. At the end, they had to unscramble the letters to spell out "AUNT BARBIE". We made it to Reno with Gavin still thinking we were headed to Mexico.

Gavin was slightly embarassed to ride the kiddie rides with his sister - they were the only rides we could get her on and even at that, she only tried out half of them.

I think I have a picture of this from every trip we take. I can't help it!

This is Medusa. Apparently it's the fastest roller coaster in the States (at least that is what Gavin said he read in the World Record book. Needless to say, he was VERY excited about this ride). Richard said he'll never ride another roller coaster unless he's on the front. Apparently, it's THAT good.

Another favorite ride, Velocity. And no, we did not turn this picture around. That is in fact, Gavin smiling while hanging upside down before he shot back down. They actually talked me into this one and I screamed myself hoarse and deaf. Won't do it again.

Yeah, I hated this one too. Gavin and Richard sat in front of me and laughed at me the whole ride.

The kiddie whale ride.

Aunt Barbie has a pool and despite the fact that the tempurature was around 70 and the water around 60, the kids insisted they be allowed to swim. They froze to death! Here they are getting ready to jump in together.

The west side of the house was hot from the sun. They spent more time flayed out against the stucco then then they did in the pool.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Bedroom Makeover

I wish I had better before pictures of this project, but regardless, I think it turned out pretty cute. I have wanted to paint Allison's furniture for a few years now and FINALLY got around to it. The dresser and nightstand used to be a yellowish stained color with gold drawer pulls. The cedar chest I got for free from a friend that was sending it to D.I. and it used to have a checkered, dark brown pad on top and was a dark stain with those old fashioned, big cover-plate type handles.

All in all, I am very pleased with the results. The cost: $26.00 on new paint brushes, spray paint for turning gold drawer pulls into silver ones and fabric to recover the cushion. (I already had the paint in the garage waiting to be used on a fence, but even if the cost of paint were added, I only used half a gallon for the entire project.)

Now I am working on a few accent pillows and some curtains. I know. Very homemakey. Who would have guessed I had it in me?