Kids Book Corner

  • Goose Girl
  • Mrs. Frisby and The Rats of NIMH
  • Peter and The Shadow Thieves
  • Peter and The Star Catchers
  • Simon Bloom, The Gravity Keeper
  • Stella Brite and The Dark Matter Myster
  • The Island of The Blue Dolphins
  • The Phantom Toll Booth
  • The School Library Journal
  • The Sisters Grimm
  • Tuck Everlasting


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Darcy Baldwin: DJB MICHAEL at The Digichick
Kate Hadfield: Halloween Doodles
Tiff Brady and Kate Hadfield: Halloween Wordy Bits
Katie Pertiet: Taped Frame
Nancy Comelab: Freebie frame October
Emily Merritt: Meshy Brush Add-on, Meshy Glitter Brush
Font: Blackadder ITC

Eve wore her Wicked Witch of the East costume with panache! Michael repurposed Aaron's old Dracula cape, stitched up some black & grey yarn for hair, a $ 1.00 hat, black tights, Rachel's old velvet dress and old ruby slippers.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB Michael at The Digichick
Kate Hadfield: Halloween Doodles, Doodled Alpha and Doodled Frame
Tiff Brady and Kate Hadfield: Halloween Wordy Bits, Basic Wordy Alpha
Bren Boone: Luscious Solids

Noah was excited to lose his second tooth so quickly! Now he has lost both central incisors.

Darcy Baldwin: Rubbed Out Alpha, Save The Date, DJB AMANDAG, DJB SUSANR all at The Digichick
Katie Pertiet: Taped Frame
Kate Hadfield: Stitched Alpha, Heavy Duty Staples, Journal Doodles, Rainbow Tape, Doodle Borders, Pipe Cleaner Stars, Rainbow Rubberbands
Tiff Brady and Kate Hadfield: Wordy Bits Alpha
Rhonna Farrer: Peachy Keen paper
Emily Merritt: Going Home Add-On
Natalie Braxton: Boy Buttons, Stitched Cut-Outs
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Christina Renee: Punch Label Alpha
Catrine: Journal Paper

:::::::::::Color Test:::::::
I saw this test on Julie P.' site and I scored 88% the first time and 100% the second time. The retake used the same word and color matches. I always find the tests that throw in a new batch of variables to be the best, but this one is fun.

Color Test
:::::::::::::::::::::Field Day Photos::::::

coming tomorrow. Aaron is sick so I need to tend to him!

Have a Sweet night!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Pleased As Punch...

with the children in Primary! They all sang so well for their families on Sunday. The sister playing the piano did a marvelous job making eye contact with me and had just the right subtle gestures. We were perfectly in sync. My anxiety was, happily, unfounded. Mom and Jim came and sat with us so they could hear the children. They were so pleased to get hugs and kisses from granny and grandpa. Afterwards, my mom ran home to do some things, then graciously came back to pick the kids up after Church. They love to ride around in granny's P.T. Cruiser.

When we went to pick the kids up from my folk's house one of our cult classic movies was on. When we told the kids who were in the back bedroom watching something on Disney or Nickelodeon that Murder By Death was on they rushed into the room and plopped on the couch asking granny to bring their lunch trays in so they could watch the film. (They are a bit pampered by my mom!) We all laughed and did lines from the movie. Aaron was the only one that didn't watch because he was playing on the computer in the bedroom.

My mom made some delicious tacos for dinner. She was shocked Aaron wanted some because he had eaten a lot just a few minutes before. He is a growing boy!


Yesterday, Michael did his routine platelet donation. The person who sticks in the needles was much more gentle than the one last time. He came home with another t-shirt from the Red Cross showing that he was a platelet donor. He joked that if this kept up his entire wardrobe would be from The Red Cross.

:::::::::::::::::::::Field Day:::::::::::

Today, Noah had Field Day at school. He knew I could only come near the end because I had an appointment for the Fall teacher conference with Eve's teacher. It took me 10 minutes to find him and I only stayed another 10 to take his photo. He was doing a great job from the things he had signed off on his card. I got to watch him do a sack race, sit-ups, and somersault before I had to run off. Aaron had to be at the dentist for a cleaning appointment and it is 45 minutes from the house.

:::::::::::::::::::::Eve's Conference::::::

The teacher said Eve spoke very softly in her class and her favorite thing is "Dramatic Play". In dramatic play Eve is only appeased as long as she is "the" Princess. There is one little boy in her class that will pretty much do whatever she says. My mom, jokingly, said, "She should marry him now! You never know if you will find another one like that!" :) The teacher said that Eve has difficulty recognizing D'nealian font, but not regular letters. My response surprised her. I told her that D'nealian is an archaic lettering form used by those teaching children to write with their quill pens, so that their letters didn't smear when they wrote with ink. I continued that I figured she would figure it out pretty quickly...not to worry. She laughed and said, "You know our county uses D'nealian." I said my husband has an engineering job where he writes in all caps and most people use typed media. Either way it didn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

:::::::::::::::::::::Dentist Appointment::::::::

Aaron has no cavities, but a stubborn baby molar. His permanent tooth behind the non moving tooth is at an angle, so it isn't pushing the tooth enough to dissolve the roots. To the tune of $500.00+ he will pull that offending tooth. Part of that fee is $100.00 dollars for the nitrous oxide to help calm his anxiety. I offered a rubber mallet, but the doctor didn't think it was funny. He will also put sealants on the back molars at the same time.


lost his second tooth. I am working on a layout with the photo I took of the momentous occasion. But, Aaron has some school work to do on my computer now!


Saturday, October 27, 2007

And So It Begins...

:::::::::::Halloween Costumes for 2007::::

Lollipop Rachel

The Wicked Witch of The East Eve

Ben 10 Noah

The Black Knight Aaron

Michael looked up the Boar Standard and chalked the outline on the fabric, then did a free hand embroidery using the sewing machine. It turned out so cool!

:::::::::::::::::Noah's Black Hole Project:::::

Michael is helping Noah with a project on space due on Monday. It is made up of a 2-liter bottle, cardboard and paint. Tomorrow they will look up information for the report part.

::::::::::::Another New York Layout::::::

Darcy Baldwin: DJB LENA, DJB Pookie Poo, SAVE THE DATE (coming soon) at The Digichick
Kay Miller: Organic Kit background paper
Ida: Crayon Doodle, Fall Leaves
Mary Fran: Spider and web
Kate Hadfield: turtle

:::::::::::::::::Tomorrow is the Program:::::::::

I'm a bit nervous and I hope all goes well!

Later, gators!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Mermaid in Training!

Eve's first real swim!

During her third swimming lesson Eve was able to use her arms and legs with her face in the water to swim to her instructor, Laura.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB Teacher, DJB Doodl E Doo, DJB Karenscript at The Digichick
Kay Miller: The Blue Lagoon
Font: Doorkeeper 41

:::::::::::::Another Layout from Our Summer Vacation::::

::::::::::::::::Another Great One:::::::

This is too true:

Index Card blog

:::::::::::::::Some Really Neat Artist Links:::

This is a great site: Artist Freebies

Acme License Generator

Smiles 'til later!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Wednesday, the 24th...

::::::::::::Rachel Found Something Interesting On The Mailbox::::::

Rachel found a twig caterpillar, but first she thought it might be a "bird poop" caterpillar like the one she saw reading an article at school in National Geographic. She was so excited to show me what I had ignored while getting the mail. She really liked the camouflage this caterpillar used to disguise itself from the birds.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB LENA, DJB JENNA, DJB Doodl E Doo, DJB AMANDAG, Cheapskate Outline
Mindy Terasawa: Spring Feastival
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Carol Abrams: Good Vs. Evil Frames (Lightened Blend Effect)
Jackie Eckles: Highlight Brushes
Christina Renee: brad from Bookplate Alpha

::::::::::::::::Blackberry Craving:::::::

I have never had a craving for blackberries before, but in the frozen food aisle I got kind of dreamy about blackberries. Then, I thought, you don't want to get those they have seeds and you hate spitting out the seeds and getting them in your teeth! I continued my non-verbal dialogue...But, they would be so lovely with some blueberries, bananas and strawberries and a bit of yogurt! The final straw was realizing that I do indeed floss, so all would be fine if I threw the frozen bag of berries in the cart I would be just fine.

:::::::::::::::::Thanks, Eddie Rabbit!:::::

I walked out the door to go to the store and rain was falling down, which is in great need for our area. The first thing that came into my mind was..."I love a rainy night. What a beautiful site! I can feel the rain on my face and the rain on my lips. Oh, it makes me feel good!"

:::::::::::::::::Costume Design::::::::::::

Michael finished the yarn wig for Eve. He sewed the yarn to a strip of fabric that fits on her head like a hat ring. She can take it off indepently of the hat if she needs to. He also cut out a circle of cardboard for Rachel's lollipop head and painted a big candy swirl. We will have to put finishing touches on it tonight. He has the camera in the car, so I will have to take photographs later.

:::::::::::::::::This Article Had Everyone Playing Along::,22049,22535838-5012895,00.html?from=mostpop

and here...

is an article debunking the test

This was fun.

Later, gators!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

::::::::::::::::James Geddy Foundry Layout:::::::

Rachel surprised us by wanting to linger for the longest time at the foundry. She was mesmerized by the molten pewter being poured in the mold and quickly hardening to become a spoon. She was fascinated by the ability of the man to bend the spoon shortly after hardening, then he would throw it back in to remelt. We finally had to coax her out so we could see other places.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB RITA2 at The Digichick
Nancy Comelab: Cluster Frame freebie
Kate Hadfield: Doodle Arrows, Heavy Duty Staples, metal flowers
Meredith Fenwick: Seasons of Life kit
Sophia Sarducci: vintage paper
Christina Renee: Glitter Splats, Book Plate Alpha
Emily Merritt: Word Toppers (modified)
Tammy Bankston: Dirty Alpha

::::::::::::::::::::::Y'all Might Want to Take This Quiz:::::

I particularly enjoyed this quiz because it asked the question about the word "pin" and "Pen". Michael hears a distinction and often makes me repeat what I asked for because he knows I use the words interchangeably. It drives him a bit batty. I suppose it explains why I call so many things "who hahs" now. Serves him right for making me enunciate!

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland

"You have a Midland accent" is just another way of saying "you don't have an accent." You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.

The South
The Inland North
The Northeast
The West
North Central
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

:::::::::::::::::::::::Cool Informative New Site::::::

I was reading Jen Caputo's blog and the information on the new Digital Scrapbooking TV. She has two tutorials now, but will be adding more. Check it out if you get a chance.

Going to try to find a caterpillar description on line for one Rachel found on the mailbox.


Monday, October 22, 2007

Does Hallmark Have an Official Listing for...

"Teacher Conference Month"? I think they pretty much have a set aside holiday for everything...well, except for "Hug A Septic Sucker" month, but I bet if the fans of the Red Green Show would unite that could all be rectified! Anyway, it is, indeed, time for teacher conferences. I had the first one via phone with our virtual teacher for Georgia Virtual Academy. She said it appeared as if Aaron was on track. She talked to Aaron and asked him how he was doing and what he liked. He said he really liked the history sections. He is particularly happy because the readings and lessons are on the ancient Egyptians. Next week is Eve. I know another teacher sent a reminder home, but I need to find where I put it so I will actually show up.

:::::::::::::::::and Sew ON, and Sew On::::::

My husband teaching Eve how to do a simple running stitch. He likes to sew, cook and bake. He is the best wife I ever had!

Darcy Baldwin: Pookie Doo/ Doodl E Doo, DJB CHERE/ DJB MICHAEL
Syrin: Silly Butterflies
Emily Merritt: Glittery Mesh Brushes
Lisa Whitney: Chalk Full of Fun Alpha
Bren Boone: Luscious Solids
Mary Fran: Scalloped edge from Can I Be Frank
Natali: Stitches
Scrap Artist: Invogue Kit
Ida: Crayon Doodle
Nancy Comelab: Freebie Cluster from Blog
Weeds and Wildflowers: Paint spatters from Doodle Alpha, Circle and zigzag stitch
Jessica Bolton: Big crossed stitch
Amy Martin: Cloth clothespin
Natalie Braxton: Butterfly

::::::::::::::::Colonial Williamsburg Layout:::::

Text: The blacksmith was creating a rolling pin by request from the Governor's kitchen. The kitchen folks wanted to see if it would be a feasible way to make their own chocolate. They needed the heavy duty rolling pin to crack through the tough cocoa beans. This is a one of a kind creation and they quipped that they will probably not make another one.

Rachel and Noah were especially interested in the blacksmith shop and Aaron thought it was interesting.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB MICHAEL, DJB KENNAscript
Emily Merritt: Word Toppers Date
Birgit: Gralpha
Christina Renee: Book Plate Alpha
Kate Hadfield: Journal Tape, Doodle Alpha, Heavy Duty Staples, Paper Swirls
Nancy Comelab: Vintage Frames
Michelle Coleman: Hand Stamped Alpha, Color Me Solid
Weeds and Wildflowers: Stars, Layered Alpha

:::::::::::::::::::The Dalai Lama:::::::

is in town and Aaron asked Michael about going to see him, so Michael took a half day off from work and they are currently in the front row of the crowd. Michael called me to check in. He related the story of a lady who was trying to save a spot for herself and a friend, but she needed to go find her friend first. She left a very nicely embroidered jacket on the damp grass and asked if Aaron would mind watching it for her. He said sure. After a bit of time she didn't come back and the crowd had increased. He spotted her pass by and realized she didn't know where she had left her jacket, so he grabbed the jacket and tracked her down through the crowd. She came back and thanked him for being so nice. They will get back some time this evening and we plan to go for a family swim at our local pool.

::::::::::::::::::::Primary Program:::::::

Last Sunday was our final practice before the actual program on this Sunday. The children did pretty well. There are a couple of songs where words are switched around or mumbled, but hopefully I will have my nerves enough on end that I won't miss any ques and the adrenaline will keep me going. I have to stand out about 5 rows back so the pianist can see and the kids. I thought about selling advertising space on my rear end. You see I really hate the idea of standing up knowing that rows of folks have to look at my butt. I don't like looking at it and I just feel like I should apologize for others that have to be back there. I know they will get over it, but all of us might need therapy after this!

Afterwards I am going to bring Noah's huge Mr. Potato Head and put some songs in it for the kids to pull out and dress the Potato Head. It will just be fun to be silly.

:::::::::::::::::::Costume Change:::::::::

Eve is going to be a witch instead of a blue fairy. I went to the store and grabbed her some black tights and a simple witch hat. She already has black shoes and a black velvet dress. I also grabbed a skein of black yarn and grey, so Michael could create a wig with highlights. He said he probably would have grabbed green with purple for the highlights. That is what I get for usurping the costume creator position in our house.


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Say What???

I was driving the kids over to sleepover night at my mom's house and the song "Long Train Runnin'" by the Doobie Brothers came on the radio. I told her I liked this song as a kid when I was about Noah's age. I told her I liked the harmonica, especially, in the song. Rachel responded excitedly, "I like it too! I can't believe we like the same song. The harmonica sound makes me think of what it might be like on a ranch, or in the desert...or in jail!"

Hey if that isn't insight I'm not sure what is!

::::::::::::Where Is A Video Camera....:::::

when you need one? As we were channel surfing during this same loud car ride to my mom's I thought it would be fun to stop on the song "Pieces of Me" by Ashlee Simpson to annoy Aaron in the backseat. Well he ended up making everyone laugh while doing a lip sync and crazy pantomimes to the music. I'm so glad I didn't wreck because I kept glancing in my rear view mirror to watch his crazy antics. He was very funny!

::::::::::::Highland Games:::::::

As my family likes to joke..."If it's not Scottish it's cr@p!" My mom and Aaron are planning on going to the Highland Games at Stone Mountain Park. The Highland Games are almost like a journey to Mecca for my mom. Alex Beaton probably sets aside 10 minutes of his schedule if he's in Georgia for a chat and photo opp!
Another favorite is finding anyone to sing the "Scotsman Song". It makes me laugh every time.

::::::::::::::Report Cards:::::::

came today. Rachel actually kept bugging me to look at hers. The kids both did great. Rachel does need to work on her math facts, but her teacher said she is an enthusiastic learner. I can attest to that. I had a Life Science video about viruses, bacteria and allergies that Aaron watched earlier in the day. I came down to tell Rachel and the others to get ready to get in the car and she said, "Just a minute we're watching this cool video on viruses and bacteria."

:::::::::::::::Wiley Miller::

Michael and I both enjoy his cartoon and I read his children's book The Extraordinary Tales of Ordinary Basil to myself last week. This week I put it in as a read before our regularly scheduled book. Noah can usually be found in a supine position during reading time, but with this book he was perched up next to me with his chin on my shoulder eager for the next word. He would get so upset when I said it was bed time. We finished the book yesterday and he asked when I could get the next in the series. I'll have to start reading to him from the Sunday comics until the next book is published...if one is forthcoming.

Michael quipped to me the other day that he thinks that he and Wiley Miller think so much alike that with two people in the world so similar that one of them is redundant. Since Wiley Miller is a better artist and conveys his thoughts so much more succinctly that Michael must me the redundant one. I told him pish-posh on that. Mr. Miller would have to come over and fix tasty Japanese cuisine and fix all the stuff that breaks at our house and I'm pretty sure he won't so Michael's place in the world is secure. I'm not sure he was at all comforted by my words.

:::::::::::::Doobie Brothers:::::

That name always made me laugh as a kid...still does a bit. This group makes me tap my feet and sing out loud. And the two best places to sing are in the shower and the car. Since I don't have a radio in my shower I can only sing along in my car. "Black Water" came on the other day and that is one of my favorite songs to belt out with the boys on the radio. What songs do you like to sing with gusto?

:::::::::::::Key Rings:::::::::

I was thinking about my key ring because Eve always wants me to detach what I have on the ring and let her play with it while I drive. My mother bought me a little multi-buttoned thingy that plays sound bites from the "Blues Brothers". The kids think it's hilarious and they have never seen the movie. It came on the other day on one of the channels and was so censored you couldn't figure out why the nun got mad at Jake and Elwood.

Do you have something cool on your key ring? Can you tell the house is empty, except for Jasper the Ferret, because I'm talking to the computer?

I hope y'all have a fantabulous weekend!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Tartan Tots

Here are a couple of pictures of the kids "playing" the bagpipes. This photo of Rachel was published in this cute little Georgia based magazine my mom receives. I think Rachel was 3. I love the big eye look she has. I told Carol I would try and post these, so I decided to use the template by Pattie Knox to give it that graphic tartan feel:

Pattie Knox: Template
Katie Pertiet: Thistle Kit
Bren Boone: Luscious Solids
Emily Merritt: Photo Overlays from October Deal of the Month
Font: Century Gothic/ Black Adder ITC

::::::::::::::::::::If You Need The Good Stuff Call Mom:::::::

You can't do a simple science experiment these days because the amount of duffusses (sp?) out there making meth! I needed some iodine to dye the cells of an onion skin, bit of potato, yogurt, cheek cell, and plaque, but the stuff has been pulled off the shelves. My mother purchased some a while back, so I was able to drive over and get it. The kids enjoyed looking at the cell structure of the different items. We joked about making meth now that we are all done with our microscope assignment, but Michael is already on "the list" at the pharmacy for buying Aleve Sinus for me last year. I suppose it would look shady?!

::::::::::::::::::::In Progress::::

I have a few layouts in progress, so I guess I'll go off and play with photoshop!


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Coal In Your Stocking?

Text: Aaron, Noah and Rachel failed to read the sign "Please Keep Off Coal" outside the Blacksmith's building at Colonial Williamsburg. They were very curious what it was, so we informed them it was what they deserved in their stockings every Christmas. The children were incredulous! They began defending their behavior. I, on the other hand, made a mental note, about the location of this stocking stuffer emporium.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB LIZ at The Digichick
Bren Boone: Luscious Solids
Michelle Coleman: Handstamped Alpha, Glitter Stockings
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Kate Hadfield: Doodled Alpha, Heavy Duty Staples
Tiff Brady and Kate Hadfield: Wordy Bits Date
Weeds and Wildflowers: Layered Alpha
Natalie Braxton: Cutouts II, Really Big Bows
Katie Pertiet: Vintage Curled Frame 4
Nancy Comelab: Vintage Frames
Meredith Fenwick: Caution Stamp
Font: Jane Austen

::::::::::::::::::What Do you Do When There Is A Teacher Work Day?::::

Well, I scheduled check-ups for Aaron and Rachel. Rachel asked that I cancel the appointment and reschedule for a time during school, so I could check her out. I told her no. When we were called into the back office the nurse informed Aaron that he would be getting the meningitis vaccine. Aaron suffers...and we along with him...from anxiety. He started to cry. He was able to calm down for a bit while the other regular check up stuff was happening. The doctor asked about the kids diets. I told him Rachel was a pretty diverse eater, and that Aaron accidently eats vegetables every once in a while. Aaron was in 40th percentile in height and 20th in weight. Rachel was 14th in height and 38th in weight. She was scheduled for a chicken pox booster, but the vaccine availibility was too low and she was healthy, so they skipped her shot. As Napolean Dynamite would declare..."LUCKY!"
Aaron, on the other hand, was not so lucky. He came to get me when the nurse was ready for the shot. He tensed up and cried. I told him to squeeze my hand, instead he clawed the cr@p out of my right forearm. Note to self...wear Kevlar long sleeve shirt when going to doctor appointments with Aaron. He flinched and grabbed for his upper arm and made the nurse drop the syringe to the ground after giving Aaron a nice scratch across his arm. Aaron apologized profusely while shaking. The nurse came back with a new syringe and prepped the other arm. This time I took hold of Aaron's hands and the nurse quickly gave the shot. Aaron was surprised that it happened so quickly and he was fine. Like...every other time. ARGH!

***WARNING...Not A Fluff Light-Hearted Entry::::

Michael has been asked to speak at the next meeting library board meeting. He is apprehensive because he dislikes confrontation, but he ,with a bit encouragment, decided that supporting The Bill of Rights would override his apprehension. The issue before the board is the libraries internet policy.
There is a pernicious problem in the world in regards to pornography and their are many who would like to censor what people view at the public library. I know from talking it over with Michael that he feels like people will see him as supporting those who make evil choices. In actuality, he is supporting their right to choose between good and evil. If we force or compel people against their will to make the choices we want we are no better than regimes throughout the world and throughout history that we have fled or fought to find a place for freedom. That very freedom is being chipped away in small ways here and there and I don't think it is of any small consequence that he has an opportunity to speak up for those freedoms that are penned in our Constitution.

::::::::::::::::Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Program:::::

Just because I saw it on the shelf at the library and wanted to read it. I grabbed The Twits by Roald Dahl.
The book was a short read and the kids were eager to hear the story. At one point I think I had 3 kids laying around me to see the illustrations. The story was bizarre, but the moral of how you look and your attitude can determine how people perceive you was great.

We then went back to our regular reading book. Rachel says she doesn't get the book, yet. She doesn't particularly like the story, but we are only on the 6th chapter, so I told her to stick it out with me. I like the quotes at the beginning of each chapter.

:::::::::::::::::::Costume Ideas::::::::

Rachel: A Lollipop...I will have to find a set of white sweats for the "stick" part and Michael will come up with something clever for the candy bit.

Noah: Ben 10...he just needs a t-shirt designed like the cartoon.

Aaron: The Black Knight...Michael is sewing a black tunic and Stephen made the chain mail last year, so he is pretty much covered.

Eve: I'm not sure about her. I'm trying to talk her out of being a fairy...just tired of that idea.

Check ya later!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Feeling Loquacious

Text: Eve found this use of the hammock far superior to relaxing int its web!

Darcy Baldwin: DJB LORRAINE1/ DJB Doodl E Doo/ DJB A Bit of Flaire at The Digichick
Kay Miller: Organic Kit
Kate Hadfield: Heavy Duty Staple
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Birgit: Gralpha
Jessica Bolton: Teeny Tiny Alpha (Using Organic kit paper)
Weeds and Wildflowers: Layered Alpha (graph paper)

:::::::::::::Water Heater::::::::::::

Michael and I spent Saturday installing a new 40 gallon water heater. We have a small house and the 15 to 20 year window to recoup the cost of a tankless system had us replace our old one with the same system albeit more efficient. I was the gopher girl for odds and ends needed to finish the task. After Michael dropped molton solder on his finger he related this fact: Your wound self-cauterizes...isn't that neat?! He accidently got some molton solder on my exposed toe (yes, he advised me to put on more than my Croc sandals for this activity...but NOOOOO! I hate confining.). There was standing water from a previous test on the sweated pipe that failed and the molton solder hit the water and popped off like grease in a frying pan and landing on the third toe of my right foot. Luckily, it wasn't as bad as Michael's finger. There is a bit of a leak in the cold water side of the connection to the water heater. To fix it we would have to shut off the cold and hot water at the valves and drain the new tank, cut the pipe to the cold, tighten it down, make a new connection and sweat the pipe, again. Michael is so thrilled with this perspective that he is in a "Let's just watch it for a bit and see how bad the leak is." I translate that into, "My finger really hurts and I really don't want to do this again, but I know I'll have to fix it soon!" It's nice to have such a handy guy around! He showed my how to cut pipe with the cutting tool, how to turn off the main gas to the house, the main water cut off and explained along the way what the different pipes did and how the water heater works. We even took the opportunity to clean the part of the duct system Michael knocked off wall trying to solder the cold water pipe. Nasty dust...just NASTY!

:::::::::::::Blogger Silliness:::::::

Your Karaoke Theme Song is "Baby Got Back"

You're a total show off who is willing to risk looking like a fool to get a few laughs.
In fact, you'll go for the cheap laugh if you need to... because it's better than no reaction!

Your friends can count on you to get a party started, and you'll party hard until you can't remember their names.
You're charismatic, charming, and a total character. With or without a few drinks in you.

You might also sing: "I Touch Myself," "Oops I Did it Again," or "My Humps"

Stay away from people who sing: "Candle in the Wind"

You Are Banana Pocky

Your attitude: fun and lighthearted
Unique and unforgettable
You are cutie everyone falls for

Your Driving Is is: 48% Male, 52% Female

According to studies, you drive both like a guy and a girl.
This means you're a pretty average driver, with typical quirks.
Occasionally you're frustrated and or a little reckless, but that's the exception - not the norm.

::::::::::Really Cool:::::::

I saw this on Julie P.'s site and took the test twice. My first score was 42% bionic. The great thing about this test is that the five tests are the same, but the questions with in the test are different, so when you retest you aren't repeating what you've already seen. There is one test, now I think about, on reflexes that is the same, so 4 out of 5 are different.

See What You're Made Of - Visit The Official Site

::::::::::::::::Sunday Family Fun::::::::

For our joint Family Home Evening we went to Stephen and Shelene's house. The kids really look forward to playing with their cousins. The food for the evening was soups and stews. Michael made homemade chicken soup with noodles. Our kids kept asking for more of daddy's chicken soup. Eve even wants the left over soup for breakfast. What a compliment for Michael! There was also a savory and spicy chili by Marcus and Laura, Stephen made a delicious crab chowder, Melissa brought some yummy potato soup, Christopher made "George" a concoction of chicken and rice soup all his own...and quite tasty. Benjamin and Missy made stewed cabbage. Shelene supplied one of my favorites, cornbread...rub the tummy good stuff! There was also some very good sourdough bread. Noah at Ritz crackers...what a nut!
The lesson for the evening had us write positive traits about the others in the room. Stephen shared how his positive attitude often creates an atmosphere that allows and prompts people to be positive in return. He encouraged to look at the cards that had what people said about us and build on those and add to them.

::::::::::::::::::What You Hear While Making Soup:::::::

Michael called me downstairs while he was working on the chicken soup and said I've got to tell you what Noah said before I forget it. (Noah and Aaron were playing some game with their Legos at the time).

Noah: "Suppose I were to go back in time and bump into my kid self and my kid self would probably say, "Who are you?" and I would have to say, "Let's just say we're related."

Michael and I just laughed and Rachel was listening to this too and shaking her head.

Friday, October 12, 2007

A Face Only A Mother Could Love...

and I do!

Darcy Baldwin: DJB JENNA, DJB MISH, DJB Doodl E Doo at The Digichick
Corina Nielsen: Background paper from October give away
Lauraskathi: Birthday Bash Add-on
Ida: Cluster Frame
Sausan Designs: Paper Doodle Frame, Doodle Frame, Exclamation point
Powers Sisters Designs: Alpha Label It
Emily Merritt: Word Toppers (modified)
Erica Hite: Dear Diary Alpha
Linda Gil Bildal: Torn edge, Star Bazarr Arrow
Kate Hadfield: Doodle Tape Alpha, Wordy Bits Alpha
Natalie Braxton: Point It Out
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples

Rachel loves making faces for the camera.

:::::::::::::Noah Said It So It Must Be...:::


Hmmm... This was an observation Noah imparted to me shortly before bedtime: "Mostly just sophisticated words use 'Q'."

When I informed Michael about what Noah said he quickly come up with several words that weren't sophisticated at all. What a spoil sport!

:::::::::::::Water Heater Woes::::::

Our old water heater has decided to leak all over the floor. It is original to the house, so no real surprise...just annoying. Michael and I will be working to replace it on Saturday.

:::::::::::::Emotions Revealed:::::::::::::

I have some things I will write about next time. This is quite an insightful book. I am learning about autoappraisers and refractory periods. Really interesting stuff.

:::::::::::::Swimming Lessons::::::::::::::

The kids are doing pretty well. Eve is the most enthusiastic and fun to watch. When she knew it was near time to go to practice yesterday she got ready and wanted to sit in the car and wait for us to follow. We still had a half an hour before we were going to leave.

I hope y'all have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Yep! It's Me Again

::::::::::::Another Family Reunion Layout::::

My son was playing along the shoreline at the lake and was a bit disconcerted that I kept aiming the camera at him.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB MISH/ DJB DEBBIEC at The Digichick
Nancy Comelab: Utimate Background Vol 1, Vintage Frame
Natalie Braxton: Cut Outs II freebie
Kate Hadfield: Staples, Wordy Bits, Doodled Arrows, Paper Swirl
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Bren Boone: Cool Summer, Luscious Solids
Katie Pertiet: Curled Vintage Frames 4
Michelle Coleman: Hand Stamped Alpha

::::::::::::::::::::Ordinary Basil::::::::

Wiley Miller, the cartoonist who pens Non-Sequitor, also wrote a children's book called The Extraordinary Adventures of Ordinary Basil.

I saw this book at the library and decided to check it out. The illustrations are fantastic and the story line is a fluid and interesting adventure. There is a particularly interesting bit of dialogue that has Basil think about how we view the history we learn in school, which is delineated by the different wars. This is in contrast to the history of the "fictional Helios" which teaches the various periods of history with positive human discovers and creations.
I will be tacking this read behind our current family book.


Aaron and I have been a couple of times this week for his physical education time and just to let him practice. I have fun doing some laps, treading water, diving and floating. It is really funny when Aaron wants me to go to the bottom of the pool and I can't stay down. I keep feeling like an undunkable Weeble Wooble.

:::::::::::::::Let's Groove:::::::::

I'll leave you with a song that makes me happy!


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Sent Kids To Brush Their Teeth:

and this is all I can post for now, but I thought it was funny enough to share:

Noahism of the day:

You know a kid is a child of a genealogist when they ask questions like this:

"What is your second favorite color twice removed?"
"Mine is orange!"


So, What is The Tooth Fairy Exchange Rate?

This was a question that was left out of the many financial queries Noah had a couple of weeks ago when he lost his first tooth. I just got around to creating a layout about this rite of passage:

Darcy Baldwin: font called DJB AMANDAG at The Digichick
Kate Hadfield: Big Staple, Doodle Alpha, journal tape, glitter tape
Tiff Brady and Kate Hadfield: Wordy Bits
Jenn Patrick: Backward Staples
Natalie Braxton: Boy Buttons
Katie Pertiet: frame
Emily Merritt: Messy Brush Add-on, word toppers
Bren Boone: Luscious Solids
Font: CK Good Point/ Trashed
Weeds and Wildflowers: "smile" from Gina's blog freebie (modified)
Ashley Olsen: Thought Bubble
Meredith Fenwick: Naked Stamp
Catrine: Journal arrow
Rachael Young: Stamp Stamp Alpha

Noah was crunching some crazy numbers trying to figure out how wealthy he would be if he lost all of his teeth at once. This isn't a Noah only thing. I've heard other kids ask the same question.
I was in a half sleep pondering things you think shark mothers leave her egg casings and swim off because she knows that her brood will loose teeth constantly throughout their lives and she doesn't want to be debt to some "Loan Shark" for the Tooth Fairy money? I did preface that sentence with the admission that I was in a kind of twilight sleep:)

::::::::::::::::::::Music Practice:::::::

For Family Home Evening I had the kids practice the songs for our Church's children's program. They swayed like the old classic Coke Christmas commercial. I wanted to give them candles...but hey, my kids and hand held fire...not a great idea. Rachel was the best at remembering the words, Noah was the best at turning sideways and grabbing Rachel and knocking her on the couch, and Eve was best at turning to face her sprawled, half-singing siblings and trying to lead the music. We went through the entire list of songs and were able to massacre them all. Noah was the classic mumble mumble, then sing the chorus clearly and loud kid. I get to lead all of the kids at Church this Sunday in a practice for next week.

For some reason I remember fondly and with a bit of silliness the classis Kumbaya. This simple song was one I sang along with at the Baptist Summer camp my Stepmom sent us to as kids one year.

::::::::::::::::::::::In The Womb::::::

The kids watched this with Michael and thought it was pretty cool.

:::::::::::::::::::Cave of The Dark Wind

Another wild romp with The Lost Boys and their friends Shining Pearl and Little Scallop! The kids were always eager for me to keep reading. They loved the tale of pirate treasure and the children exploring the lava tubes. If your family likes adventure tales this one will fit the bill.

:::::::::::::::::::The Aurora County All-Stars::

This is our new book for tonight.


Aaron are going to try and get in a swim for physical education today after he finishes his math lesson. I just wish the pool was a salt pool and not chlorine.


Sunday, October 07, 2007

We Are The Music Makers...

We are the dreamer of dreams:

This is a group of photos I took of my niece while I was on lifeguard duty during our family reunion. She is a collector of rocks and shells. She also likes to line them up.

Darcy Baldwin: DJB KarenbScript at The Digichick
Gina Miller: Canvas of Color
Antonio Rafaello: Tattered and Torn Frames
Emily Merritt: Messy Brush Add-on
Michelle Coleman: Handstamed Brush

:::::::::::::::::::::Emotions Revealed:::::::

Here is a well put observation by Paul Ekman in introduction of his book, "We organize our lives to maximize the experience of positive emotions and minimize the experience of negative emotions. We do not always suceed, but that is what we try to do."

The author started his research in the 1950s studying hand movements to try and determine if patients receiving psychological care were making improvements and it was through "serendipity" and grant money that he was asked to study facial expressions. His goal was to find out if facial expressions meant the same thing in all cultures, or were they learned in each culture. Most scientists felt that expressions were learned and dismissed the writings of Charles Darwin who believed they were innate and universal. Ekman also had a wonderful mentor by the name of Silvan Tomkins who had already been studying human expressions.

I'll give more tidbits as I go along.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::Speaking of Doing Things That...:::::::

that help maximize positive emotions check out my BIL photography website: Invisible Green
He named one of his photographs from a comment I made. Kickin' Cool Electric Lollipop

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::Cool Cousins::::::::

The Rachel and Aaron had such fun having Gabriel and Afton over. The girls giggled, wrote a musical and giggled some more. The boys laughed, got hurt, and played video games. I believe that is some Zen definition of balance.

I'll try to post some of the Taylor Boys Musical if I can get it to load to photobucket.

Until later!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Nic, Nick and Nicky!

The Atlanta Greek Festival was great! Thursday is the day to attend. Their were no crowds, so we walked right up and grabbed gyros for dinner. Noah and Aaron had cheese pizza...heathens! Then the Rachel and Aaron spotted the sign that said Kafenion where they knew the loukamades are made. Aaron, Eve and Rachel were so excited to partake of the little doughnut hole like confections with a syrup of honey and light karo sprinkled with cinnamon. We asked one of the volunteers a question and laughed when we noticed her name was Nicky. Michael watched the kids while I went to the pastry area and purchased baklava and some super delicious Greek style wedding cookies called KOURABIEDES. We sat and ate while watching and listening to Greek traditional dances and music. The clouds were ominous throughout the event, but the rain didn't come. We also listened to the last 15 minutes of a lecture given about the Greek Orthodox Church in their cathedral. The mosaic art was fascinating! After we were finished with everything we went to take the free shuttle back to our car. Michael and the kids tried to board a private bus for an assisted living home. They were so serious about Michael being on the wrong bus. He replied, "But this looked like where all the fun is! Do you need a driver?" We all laughed and went up the hill to catch our shuttle.

:::::::::::::::A layout of Our Trip to Ellis Island & The Statue of Liberty:::

Katie Pertiet: Bent vintage frame
Kate Hadfield: Knotted stitches, staple, taped alpha
Gina Miller: Canvas of Colors
Darcy Baldwin: DJB DEBBIEC at The Digichick
Font: Pea Renee

::::::::::::::::::::::Niece and Nephew::::::

We have Gabriel and Afton over to spend the night and the kids are a riot. Afton and Rachel are writing a musical about their brothers'. Aaron and Gabriel have been doing guy stuff like Lego Starwars video game, skateboarding, and scooters. I took the kids over to the bowling alley and they bowled one game. Afton was so thrilled when she knocked over the pins you would think every time was a strike. When we got home she said, "Hey, I just lost my tooth!" I grabbed her a paper towel and put the tooth in a ziploc. Moments later Gabriel came rushing in saying, "This is bad!" He had wrecked his skateboard in front of the house. He has a road rash scrape on his side and a quarter-size bit of missing skin on his elbow. I cleaned him up and put some pain relief antibiotic cream on the wound and covered it with an elbow bandaid.

We took the kids over to Chick-Fil-A for dinner and Eve and Noah made friends with another family of kids. Later we took them over to my mom's house to drop of Noah and Eve. We stayed until my parents got home from dinner. Michael and I played the girls in a game of Are you Smarter Than a Fifth Grader, while watching the show on television. The girls made it to the 1,000,000 dollar question, while Michael won the whole shebang. Then we played Simpson Clue. (I was Mrs. White (Mr. Smithers) in the Burns Manor with an extendo glove).
We ended up watching the Japanese cartoon Digimon with the kids. Basically, you can have any kind of name ending with "mon", so Michael was making up names. He jokingly said, "Pain in the @**mon". Almost immediately Afton walked in the room and asked, "Did someone call my name?" Her timing was impeccable. Gabriel just shook his head and kept laughing.

::::::::::::::::::::No Pill Fleece::::::::::

I need to make a run to the fabric store today and purchase some No Pill Fleece for teacher presents. Rachel has a couple of teachers, Noah has one, and Eve has 3 (two pre-school and one ballet/tap teacher). I will just cut and tie the ends and embroider their names on the blankets.

:::::::::::::::::::::The Bourne Supremacy::::

I finished up the book, yesterday. The intrigue had my head spinning and the double talk on the double talk by the spys and government officials was bizarre. I overall liked the read, but found the ending lacking the energy of the prior chapters. I am now reading The Bourne Ultimatum


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Short Post

:::::::::::::::::Another Family Reunion Layout:::

3 of my kids and a few cousins showing off their new tie-dye shirts.

Summer Simmons: Silly Noodle and Mardi Party
Kate Hadfield: Rainbow Rubberbands II, Knotted Stitches, Doodled Tapes 1,
Emily Merritt: Mesh Brush Add on, Stitched Frame
Meredith Fenwick: Ledger Paper
Corina Nielsen: Be Kind Papers
Lauren Reid: Alpha words from October Newsletter
Michelle Coleman: Color Me Solid Papers for letter cut outs
Christina Renee: Aqua punch label alpha
Lemonaid Lucy: Nicely Grungy Frames
Amber Clegg: Date Stamp

Darcy Baldwin: DJB DEBBIEC at The Digichick

:::::::::::Greek Festival::::::::

The weather isn't cooperating, but we may still try going to the Atlanta Greek Festival today.


Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Put Away the Lighter Fluid and Matches

and read a book!

::::::::::::Banned Books::::::::
I was reading a friend's blog and she talked about Banned Book Week. I was eager to see if some of my favorites, or family reads were on the list. Here are a few:

Coming in at number 22: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
(We listened to her read it on tape, too. How racy!)

Coming in at number 41: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
(Sputter, cough of disbelief...!)

Coming in at number 52: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
(I was amazed by this book during high school...deep stuff.)

Coming in at number 70: Lord of the Flies by William Golding
(If you don't think this tale isn't useful just see how often it is referenced in The Lucifer Effect by Philip Zimbardo.

First Amendment Links

::::::::::::::::::Good Segue...?:::

Text: Eve, Michael, Rachel, Aaron and Noah were eager to try out the stocks.

Jen Wilson: Simple Expressions
Emily Merritt: Messy Brush Add on
Michelle Coleman: Label Brushes
Rachel Young: Stamp Stamp Alpha
Christina Renee: Book Plate Alpha
Kate Hadfield: Messy Staples
Rhonna Farrer: Snapshot Frames
Robyn England: Clock Brush
Darcy Baldwin: DJB MICHAEL at The Digichick

Font: Jugend WF

Smiles, until later!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Right Field...It's Important You Know...

:::::::::::::I'm Not The Only Thing Headed For A Break Down::::::::

I sent the kids off to the bus top, then a couple of minutes later Rachel rushed back up to the house to get her terrarium with a worm for school. I said, "Hey, luckily the bus is running late so you were able to run back and get that." Then, 2 minutes later I hear a rush of thundering kid feet and yelling voices. The kids from the bus stop are running to my house. The said the bus was broken down and they needed a ride. So, I loaded 3 of the neighbor kids and my 2 in the car and headed for school. I was third in line and we just had to wait 10 minutes until the school was open. That was a valuable 10 minutes. I used the time to sing with the radio and dance in my car seat to the utter and complete embarrassment of the children. That was a satisfying 10 minutes.

::::::::::::::Almost There:::::::

I took Rachel for her last braces adjustment before their removal next month. She is so happy to be getting so close to the end of her tooth confinement.

:::::::::::::Right Field:::::::::

This is a 2 page layout of my boys playing trap ball at Colonial Williamsburg. It is an English game that was part of the evolution of modern baseball.

Kate Hadfield: created the super amazing Dandelion Doodles as a request. Thank you, Kate!
Wordy Bits, Messy Staples, New Home doodles
Jen Wilson: Simple Expressions
Michelle Coleman: Color Me Solid (freebie on her blog)
Amber Clegg: Date Stamp

Font: DJB MISH/ DJB LIZ by Darcy Baldwin at The Digichick

::::::::::::::::::Zneet Znatter Zneet:::::::

Rachel has been watching Season 2 of My Hero. The Christmas episode is hilarious...hold your sides, tear up and start laughing like a seal hilarious.

::::::::::::::::::: A "Relatively" Nice Evening:::::

Reuben, Ang, Gabriel and Afton came over for dinner last night. The kids had fun on the computer and making bead watches. Reuben helped roll up the egg rolls, which I can not figure out how he does it. His fingers are like thick sausage links, but he can make quite an attractively rolled egg roll. Michael made some tasty ginger beef soup, breaded chicken cutlets, and rice. The Hmong eggrolls were so delicious!
After dinner we just talked and then Eve wanted to watercolor, so Afton, Reuben, Noah and Rachel were given watercolors and the watercolor paper. They left about 11:00p.m. Noah and Eve were instantly asleep and the rest of us soon followed.

:::::::::::::::::::Always Behind::::::::::

Laundry, a couple of subjects for school with Aaron, homework with Noah and trying to remember where I left my mind. Time to go do a couple of science experiments in kitchen stadium.