Life in the Country

Taking one day at a time with kids, cattle, and farming!

My "5"

on Monday, April 28, 2008

5 Years Ago I was....
Chasing around a 2 year old and a 4 year old. Neither of the kids were in school yet. I was teaching special ed at ROWVA Elementary. I don't have a great memory so life must have been good, I don't remember otherwise!

5 Snacks I Love
*Diet Coke (this could be all 5!)
*Cinnamon Dulce Latte from Starbucks
*Fresh strawberries & cream cheese dip
*peanut butter M&Ms
*wheat thins

5 Things On my To Do List/Things I Did Today
*Stayed home with Brooke, she was "sick"
*Cleaning closets is on my to do list
*Covering my flowers tonight so they don't die in the frost
*Pray that it stops raining and Jeff gets in the field
*Took a little nap this afternoon

5 Things I would do if I were a Millionaire....
*Pay off all of our families' debt and be sure they would live the rest of their lives debt-free
*Donate a lot of money to the MS Society and to Cancer Research
*Be sure that every student at school had clean clothes and the proper school supplies
*Hire someone to take care of my house so I could spend more play time with the kids (I worry too much about things around here and don't spend enough time "playing")
*Get Jeff more farm ground

5 Bad Habits I Have
*Chewing my fingernails
*Eating too many sweets
*Diet Coke and an occasional Mt. Dew
*Yelling at my kids when I am the one in a bad mood
*Letting our dog sleep with us

5 Places I Have Lived
*With mom and dad
*Leidman Dorm at Monmouth College
*320 E. Archer (appt. in college)
*Rental house when we first got married (outside of Gerlaw)
*Our current home 2 miles west of Alexis

5 Jobs I've Had
*Waitress at Happy Burro
*Cashier at Hogan's Movie Rental
*Reading aide
*Special Ed teacher (current)
*The hardest one yet.... a Mom

Ok, Keely, I did it! Now, Mindy, where's yours? And just think, Cathi, you could do this, too! I think you should AT LEAST put this in an email. It's kind of fun!


on Thursday, April 24, 2008

Why does it have to continue to rain? Do any of you know what it's like to be the wife of a farmer who can't get into the field to plant their crops? Well, for those of you who don't, it sucks! He is so crabby. I thought maybe I'd see what the going rate is at the Super 8 Motel in Monmouth. The kids and I may have to transfer there for a while! (although I'm exaggerating, it doesn't sound too bad!) I am trying to get things ready for a Longaberger Open House on Saturday morning. My cleaning lady just came on Tuesday and by now you can't even tell she was here. I like to have these kinds of things to get my house clean, but it is a lot of work! And, I don't think I know of anyone that is coming. Heck, I don't even care if someone just comes to visit and eat the treats. Just someone come please!! My sister Cathi is the Longaberger consultant so I know I don't have to have things just perfect. It's pretty laid back around here. So tomorrow night I will go to the store to get what I need for my treats. I care more about cooking/baking for my parties than I do actually cleaning for them. Oh well, it's all about the food, isn't it? Well we are off to Brooke's dance class. No tumbling though because of her sprained wrist so it should be an easy night. Brooke's tumbling skills aren't exactly Olympic quality. She takes after her mother, poor girl! Then party preparation tomorrow night!

Earth Day

on Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Brooke was so excited today. All of the third graders brought home a white pine tree for Earth Day. She told her dad last night that she was going to get one and that she wanted him to help her plant it today after school. He told her to pick out a good spot and was very quick to remind her that SHE would be the one mowing around it. The poor girl, he's going to have her on that mower all spring and summer! Anyway, we got the tree planted and she was very proud of it. I told her she has to remember to water it. I sure don't have a green thumb! She wasn't too happy with Jeff when they were planting it though because he kept throwing earthworms on her! Gross! Blake was riding his dirtbike around them as they were planting it. Quite a sight! Blake is really into recycling right now. He has us separating our trash and recycling absolutely everything. I know it's a good thing to do, but honestly he's driving me nuts! He's constantly looking at the bottom of everything to see what "number" it is so we know how to recycle it. They've been studying this at school and he is taking it very seriously! I guess we're going to become a "Green" family!

Our Trip to the ER...

on Tuesday, April 22, 2008

resulted in this! Here is a picture of Brooke's poor arm. It could have been much worse. At least there is nothing broken and it's her left arm since she is right-handed! Just a really bad sprain. It will be better in no time at all!


Well, our Sunday sure started out good. We had great intentions of doing a bunch of stuff outside. The kids and I headed down the road to John & Wanda's on our 4 wheelers. We wanted to watch the guys setting the dock in the pond. It takes a while to ride 4 miles on 4 wheelers when we have so many stops on the way due to a hurting thumb from pushing on the throttle to an itch under the helmet to stopping on every bridge to watch the creek flow by. We finally made it and as we were 1/2 mile from home, our day went from good to bad to worse. Erik (nephew) and his friends blew past us on their 4 wheelers so we (Blake and I) stopped alongside the road to watch them "show off". Well I guess Brooke wasn't paying attention and she came up behind Blake going about 15 mph. Her 4 wheeler hit the back of his and threw her up in the air. She didn't fall off, but came down on her wrist/hand wrong. So being the mean mother that I am, I made her drive the rest of the way home crying, tucking her wrist in her stomach because it hurt so bad. I didn't know of any other way to get all of us home other than that. It immediately started to swell and the palm of her hand was bruising by the time we got home. We iced it and elevated it, but it didn't seem to get much better. So off to the ER we went. We were there about 3 hours, which was better than the 7 that some of the other people had been there. The ER was FULL of people... very sick people nonetheless. After 8 x-rays, they found no breaks, just a really bad sprain. So she is wearing a wrap on her hand/wrist for a week and is out of PE (don't think that hurt her feelings!). Of course if you know Brooke, she is very hot blooded (gets that from Gma Wanda!) and it's been warm the last couple days so she wants to take that wrap off as soon as she gets home from school. So.... we left the ER, drove through Long John Silvers to get Blake and Jeff some supper and ..... it hit me.... a ton of bricks... the flu! Oh how I was wishing Brooke was 16 or at least close to 16 so she could drive us home! I really thought I was going to die before we got home. I started vomiting at 9:00 and finally quit at 4 a.m. It was horrible. I had such a migraine yesterday that I couldn't get off of the couch and my muscles and my back hurt so bad that I couldn't hardly walk. I guess that was from the violent vomiting and diarrhea! I know.... TMI (too much info). Sorry. Wanda finally brought me some prescription pain pills last night around 5:00 and that broke my migraine and fever. Still not feeling good today, but I did go back to school. When you teach, you have to forget about taking care of yourself to take care of everyone else's damn kids. Still haven't eaten much. It feels like a semi has driven through my stomach. My dad has it today. I feel so bad for him. I feel his pain. We got home from school today to find Jeff mowing. Doesn't he realize that we are going to have to mow now every week? No, I mean I will have to mow every week. He got rained out of planting so he took it upon himself to mow. He now has Brooke on the mower. I can't imagine her liking it for too long. We have a huge yard, there is no way she could mow very much of it. She's only 9! I guess that's when I started mowing. She wanted to learn last year, but we thought we'd better wait another year. It will be a great help though to have her help with all of this yard work. I guess this is one more thing that shows how grown up she is getting!


on Sunday, April 20, 2008

Whoo hoo! Blake slept 13 1/2 hours last night and woke up in a much better mood! I was hoping that would happen. He told me that he was really tired. In fact, when I walked by his room several times I could hear him snoring. I think he was in the same position this morning as he was when he fell asleep. It's supposed to be nice today so we are hoping we can spend most of the afternoon outside. The kids are wanting to go fishing down at the pond, but we'll have to see how muddy it is. Grandma and Grandpa just got a John Deere Gator and the kids are itching for a ride on it. They need to work with their 4H calves, too, we'll have to see how much time we have. I know once they are outside, I'll have a hard time getting them in. We are sooo ready for warm weather. Maybe I'll have some fun pictures to post later!


on Saturday, April 19, 2008

I have just been about pushed to my limit this weekend. I don't know why MY kids are so darn stubborn. Blake has been in SUCH a BAD mood tonight. He has been in his room for about an hour after refusing to eat in the kitchen. He always wants to sit in the living room and watch tv while he eats. We really put our foot down tonight and told him that he had to sit with us. He usually cooperates at supper, but tonight he has really pushed it! It makes me soooo frustrated. I have pretty much tried every technique I know to use to get through to him, but nothing is working. He seems to think that the world revolves around him and that he is the boss of everyone, especially his older sister. Brooke is way too nice to him. I tell her that all the time, and I think that has contributed to the making of my 7 year old monster! So I guess he will go to bed with no supper tonight. He spent the night with a friend last night and that sure hasn't helped either. I don't like not being able to monitor when he goes to bed and gets up in the morning. He requires his sleep and if he doesn't get it, I have to pay for it! I shouldn't have let him go because he was in a bad mood at supper last night. And that was fun, we were surrounded by family at the Packinghouse for Chase's birthday and Blake sat there with his head in his coat, refusing to talk to anyone. When I'm in public, I tend to choose my battles and that wasn't one that I was going to pick. So... enough complaining. I'm about ready for bed. Brooke is in the bathtub and she's about ready, too. I have a feeling we will be calling it a night pretty early tonight.

I've Been Tagged!

on Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Ok, I've been tagged by my (former!) friend, Mindy! I'm suppose to write about 6 random things!

#1 I love spring, but I don't like the interruptions it puts in my routine. It's 8:41, Brooke is in the bathtub, Blake hasn't had a bath yet, and he hasn't read his nightly book yet either. We are usually in bed by this time every night. I'm having a really, really hard time adjusting to this. I am a VERY routined person on school nights and this is driving me nuts!

#2 I keep eating, but I want to lose weight. I guess I think it will magically disappear. I LOVE food, very much! I eat anything in sight. I've gotta get a handle on this. I'm going to be the beached whale when we go to Florida in June.

#3 My kids' closets are overflowing.... literally. Blake can't even shut his closet door. Brooke and her friends have pushed everything aside and climbed to the back of hers and made a fort. That bugs me. I need to get them cleaned out. I just look at them and keep shutting the door.

#4 I HATE frogs and toads, worms, anything slimy and gross, anything that jumps up at you while you're walking by. I heard a toad tonight.... sick!

#5 I have the best family and friends in the world. I don't tell them that enough!

#6 I am a stuffer and it's really getting on my nerves. I would die if anyone looked in my closets, cupboards, antique cupboards, and certain drawers. I just stash everything in there to make my house look picked up. That, too, has to change. I guess that kind of goes along with #3, huh?

A Little Help from the Mud Doctor!

on Monday, April 14, 2008

That's what Blake calls this. As we are riding through the feedlot, Blake yells to me, "Hey, Mom, I need a little help from the Mud Doctor!" And they took tearing through the mud. I don't think you can see all of the mud, but there was a ton!! Mixed in with a little manure, too. Yummy!

And The Winner Is......

Brooke!!! She finished her Multiplication Speed Tests and crossed the finish line of the classroom "horse race" along with two other girls in her class. A 3 way tie! Her teacher said it's the first time in history that 3 people have taken all of their speed tests with absolutely no mistakes, all 100%s, in her 20-some years of teaching 3rd grade. I'm sooo proud of her! She couldn't wait to call her Dad after school to tell him that she will soon be getting a Horse Trophy. He said that she takes after him. I'm not quite sure he should get all the credit; however, they did have a really fun time studying her facts at night. Brooke and Blake have been outside since we got home from school. They came in long enough to get a few bites of a cheeseburger and they were out the door again! They are enjoying the nice weather and have been riding 4 wheelers and shooting bows 'n arrows. A little redneck maybe? I have a feeling I will have a hard time getting them in the house in the evenings now that it's supposed to be more springy. We all went for a 4 wheeler ride earlier and Blake made me follow him through this trail that him and Jeff went on yesterday. I tried to tell him that I didn't want to follow him through the timber, but what was I to do when he took off and I could no longer see him!? He is 7 years old and I, yes I, am following HIM. Shouldn't I be leading the way??? Shouldn't I be the better rider that he should be following? He is such a good little 4 wheeler rider. He NEVER sits down. Always standing up, going absolutely as fast as he can go until his Mom yells at him to slow down. I'm sure he'd rather ride with Jeff. The thing is - he rides fast, stands up, looks back at me, and never misses a beat. He flies past holes and wash outs and then points to it so I will know they're there. I just think that maybe it should be the other way around. When I do pass him, he comes flying up beside me and blows my doors off! I honestly don't like riding with him. He makes me too nervous. I guess he's just getting some practice for the next race in May! Brooke just laughs and the whole time is yelling at me to go faster to get caught up with Blake. Then she makes me turn around and go get Pepper who follows us all over the country. She is so fat that she can barely run her little dog legs around. She's fine on the way there, but can barely make the way home. So I turn around and go get her. She hops up behind Brooke and me on the 4 wheeler and away we go. She loves to ride, it's so funny. She digs her claws in so she won't fall off! Until next time...

Little Firecrackers!

on Saturday, April 12, 2008

Tonight was the United Elementary Talent Show. Brooke and Rachel did a dance that they choreographed themselves to Josh Turner's "Firecracker". They did a great job putting it together. They wore cowboy hats and western shirts, rolled their jeans up, and even started out their dance with their guitars. It was really cute. There were lots of contestants. They had a good time. I would have never gotten in front of a gym full of people when I was 9! They don't really get nervous. I guess that it helps that they dance and perform at their recitals. There were a lot of kids that were nervous, but not ours! Blake got a little bored with it I guess. He fell asleep on my lap with about 20 minutes to go! It couldn't be that he had been up since before 5 a.m.! He felt better yesterday and got to go back to school. The doctor said it was just a virus that he's been fighting. I hope it's gone. He usually doesn't catch many bugs. I think he's too busy for a germ to catch him! Today was a big day for him, too. He earned his Reading Tshirt for reading 150 books through the school reading incentive program. It's a HUGE deal to those kids to get their tshirts. He was very excited about his new shirt! It says "Read to be U" on the front and "Red Storm Reader" in silver on the back. We are soooo tired of this cold weather and rain! Yuck! We are going to have to mow before too long. In fact, by the time it warms up and dries out enough to mow, we may have to get the baler out! Jeff is really ansy to get to the field. I asked him what all of this rain meant. We looked at the 14 day forecast and it shows more rain once it warms up midweek. He made the comment that he HAS to get into the field soon. If he hasn't been in by May 1, it's going to be BAD. I don't think I want to know what "BAD" means.
We don't have too busy of a weekend. Brooke and I have a wedding shower to go to today so Blake is going to help Jeff do something. She wants to have a couple friends over tonight so we'll see if I can get my patience built up for that. Thought about going to see "Nim's Island" in the theater but not sure if we will or not. Hopefully it will be pretty quiet around here! (not if I have 3 9 year old girls here though!)

Not Again!!!

on Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Blake is sick again! He looks a lot better in this picture than he really does as he's laying on the couch. He had a dentist appointment this morning that we had to reschedule for the 2nd time! He got sick the last day he was supposed to go, too. I know he gets nervous because he has to get another cap but I don't think that's giving him a fever! He came into our room about 4:30 a.m. which is unusual and I took his temperature because he was so warm. It was 101.5. We all went back to sleep. I was hoping it was just a bad dream! I hate when they are sick! He was just sick last week and was out of school for 2 days! We took Brooke to school and on our way home he started vomiting. Poor little guy. He absolutely hates getting sick to his stomach and he fights it until the bitter end. He's not a very good "flu" patient. Now, Brooke on the other hand, she'll throw up right and left because she knows it will make her feel better. Not Blake. (he takes after his aunt cathi) And my Nanny couldn't even help me out because she's helping Chase today. He has to go get a tooth pulled at the oral surgeon and Nanny Cathi is taking him. How dare he steal my help! She's more nervous going than he is.... she HATES any dentist of any kind!!!!!! I know that Chase is nervous, too, so keep him in your thoughts today. I talked to him last night and he was eating a large Blizzard from DQ. He said he was eating as much as he could since he couldn't eat after midnight. My kind of guy!!!!

Well, my patient is calling. His fever is back up and needs more tylenol. He has such a bad headache. I wish he could take a nap..... then I could, too! Nothing like staying home from school and being able to take a nap. But, oh no, everyone else will expect this great supper since I've been home all day. And they will expect the house to be picked up, bills be paid, laundry done and put away. Needless to say, a "sick" day for me doesn't mean sitting around like I'd like it too. Hopefully Blake will be better tomorrow!

Oh, and CONGRATULATIONS to Brooke AND Rachel!!! Their Young Authors Stories were chosen as one of the top five in their classrooms. I know Brooke is very excited about it. They get to go to a celebration next Thursday night where their stories will be read by teachers. Brooke's was called "Melo the Mouse" and Rachel's was called "The Talented Dog". I'm sure hers is about her exceptional dog Sadie! (that's what Mom always called her anyway... ) Brooke said that it was "quite an honor". And keep your fingers crossed that they both passed their 5s and 6s speed tests!!!

Enough Already!!

on Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Geesh, now that I've started this blog, I get nasty messages from people (won't mention any names, Cathi) about how I don't update often enough. Today she instant messaged me and said, "Hey, I was wondering how your fingers are." What that meant is "Why haven't you updated your blog?" She thought maybe my fingers had been broken. Well... they're not.... it's just been pretty quiet around here. The kids were very content playing outside this weekend while it was nice and I was content just not doing much! I did go and get my spring haircut (again) tonight. I decided to go shorter. No, I'm not going to put a picture of myself on this thing. I am sure that everyone would notice the beautiful cold sores that are bordering the upper left and bottom right of my lips. A gal at school had one last week and all it takes for me to get one is to look at hers. Yep.... I looked.... she told me she had one.... I even gave her some of my medicine.... and bam! Now I have them. Woke up with them on Saturday morning and they've gotten worse, but I do think they are finally healing. The fact that they are inside my mouth on the roof of my mouth, too, is so painful. I can hardly eat anything without them hurting so bad and making my eyes water. Ok, ok... I know.... I still eat, nothing actually "stops" me from eating. I just eat a little slower I guess. I'm not the type of person to let something like cold sores stand in my way of food. I live for food! Yeah, so that's why there's no picture of my haircut. Oh, I guess we have been spending a lot of time studying our multiplication facts. Brooke is now taking speed tests everyday at school. She puts so much pressure on herself to pass the darn things. We are now studying 5s and 6s so she can pass those tomorrow. It's a big "race" and whoever moves their "horse" (Brooke named hers Lightning) across the finish line first gets a McDonalds lunch. How much pressure is that???????? Geesh, they're only in 3rd grade! I tell ya I think school gets harder and harder at younger and younger grades. I can't believe what they do in 1st and 3rd grade. Blake is right now studying Recycling at school and they have been talking about Earth Day which is coming up. All he talks about is how "sad" he is that people litter and damage our Earth. It is so cute when he says it. He said that he wanted to go clean up ditches this weekend if it's not raining! More power to him! Next he's going to be Dr. Garbologist and going through our trash separating recyclables from non-recyclables (tee hee, Uncle Louie!). Well I'm to the point of rambling so that means it's time to sign off. Until next time... when hopefully there's something more exciting to tell you!

Awwww.... how sweet!

on Wednesday, April 2, 2008

This is a typical evening at our house. Every night Jeff and Pepper have to have their "play time" together. He wrestles around on the floor with the dogs and he thinks they really like it. I wish they could talk so we'd know different! Awww.... how sweet.... Only thing that is missing is Miss Sophie, the dachsund from hell!

What would I do.....

on Tuesday, April 1, 2008

without Brooke? She has been such a big help to me tonight. This week, I have all of my Special Ed IEP meetings.... the worst week in all of a special ed teacher's school year!! I have been a little more behind than I would like because I stayed home with my 2 sickies yesterday. I tried getting a lot of my work done tonight while fixing supper (leftovers and McDonalds for the kids... not too difficult for me I guess), doing makeup work with Brooke and Blake (how much work can they possibly miss being gone for 1 or 2 days? A LOT!! You'd think it was college!), laundry, taking the dog from hell out to pee, laundry (oh yeah, Jeff brought in his work coat that he needs washed and dried by morning... it's 8:47 and I haven't even washed it yet), and yes, writing 6 IEPs that each consist of 6 to 9 pages, depending on the student!! Wow, just a little overwhelmed tonight I guess. But, anyway.... while I am trying to wrap things up with all of my schoolwork... I look up and who is loading the dishwasher and picking up the kitchen but my 9 year old daughter!! I told her that she was sure helping me out tonight be trying to be me! I seriously don't know what I would do around here without her. She is such a big help to me and is usually a step or two ahead of me. She knows exactly what my next move will be. Thank Goodness for Aunt Cathi (Nanny Cacky) today because she let Blake stay with her today and Brooke stayed with her for a couple hours this morning until she felt good enough to go back to school. Blake still had a fever this morning so he couldn't go to school today. He was pretty bummed about it... NOT! Gosh, he got to go to the Amish Bakery and McDonalds with Aunt Cathi. I'm surprised Cathi's ears aren't worn out and his jaws aren't cramping from all of his talking. The boy has a lot to say!! He is definitely ready to go back to school tomorrow... he told me he misses his girlfriend! Oh brother!!! So, if anyone ever needs help around the house.... call me... I bet Brooke would hire out! She's the best helper around!!