Thursday, January 29, 2009


I'm not sure I have anything "blog worthy" to write about tonight. Not much of anything new happening around here, just the same old same old. I used to dislike the months of January, February and even some of March when I was younger for that very reason. The weeks of gray and ice and snow and cold just got so old and everything seemed the same, day after day. I really don't feel that way anymore, but this week (and the past few) have seemed to run into each other with their sameness.

Benjamin has learned how to sign "please" with his hands. It is so cute, and technically, he doesn't do it right. I tried to get a picture tonight, but my camera battery was dead. We've taught the last four of our children the signs for please, all done and more, and it is always amazing how quick they catch on. Anna and I taught Ben the other day with ice cream. He was more than happy to say please for that! Before the ice cream was gone, he was saying it without any prompting.

Paul made rabbit pot pie tonight. All the boys in the house loved it. I will admit, it looked delicious. But I wouldn't try it and neither would the girls. Venison is as wild as I get! So we had separate dinner meals, one for the boys and one for the girls (and baby as I wouldn't let Benjamin try it either). Samuel chowed it right down and later told me it tasted like salt. All righty then! He really liked it. He has been in an eating mode lately and it seems he has eaten non stop for a few weeks.

Have a good night.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Saturday, January 24, 2009

This Week

  • Where did it go??
  • The scoobs (Paul's pajama pants that Sam has slept with every night for the past 2 years) caught on fire. Yes, you read that right. They caught on fire. Sam, for whatever reason, threw them into the oven. No one saw him do this and we didn't realize anything was wrong until there was a burning smell in the house. Don't worry, they survived, no worse for the wear.
  • Tuesday evening we had a friend of Paul's over for dinner. He lost his wife not quite a year ago and is very lonely. He was so delighted to get out of his house and we were so delighted to have him. I was very proud of my kids as they talked with him and made him feel so at home.
  • When Paul's friend arrived (now, he has a pretty good sized white beard), Sam came running into the kitchen where I was and said, "MOM! Ellie said that guy is Santa Claus' brother!" very loudly. I looked at Ellie (after realizing 'that guy' was right behind Sam) and it was all we could do not to burst out laughing.
  • Another one of Paul's friends dropped off 5 large garbage bags full of clothes, most of which were just the right size for Anna. These were not Walmart clothes; the bags were full of name brand clothing. (Anna could really care less, but name brand clothes are usually pretty well made). She was thrilled! Ellie also found some clothes in the bags that will fit her.
  • 2 of my best friends from high school and I have decided to get away for a weekend together. I haven't seen the one since we graduated TWENTY FIVE years ago this June and the other I haven't seen in over 13 years. I'm so excited! I have never had the opportunity to do anything like this!
  • The mouse is back. He woke me up at 6:30 yesterday morning, scratching and chewing. I contemplated going out into the living room, but I was so tired and the bed was so warm, that I just covered my ears and went back to sleep. He wasn't in my room, he was in the wall. UGH
  • We had a wonderful ladies fellowship last evening. We were able to open up a bit, one to another and ended the evening with a touching time of prayer. God is good!
  • Have a great Lord's Day tomorrow.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Benjamin at 11 Months

Benjamin turned 11 months today. 1 more month and he will be a year old. Amazing. He's still such a sweet baby, but here lately, he's been showing us something that, um, we don't quite like. He has entered the world of fit throwing. Just like that! He does not like to be told no, and he will show his displeasure by arching his back and usually screaming! Poor baby doesn't know what he's in for as Paul and I try to teach him self control!
He's not a good napper. I'm lucky if he sleeps an hour in the morning and an hour in the afternoon. Sam still takes much longer naps than that! I've been spoiled! But, I will say, he now sleeps 10 to 12 hours at night, which makes for a much happier mama.

He's not interested in walking, he much prefers to crawl. He tolerates the playpen, but lets us know real quick when he thinks he's been in it too long.

He loves Sam. Usually just a look from Sam and Ben will smile. Ben loves to look at books, and he loves to rip up books.
He is a very good eater and eats lots of food at every meal. Ever since he recovered from the stomach flu in December, he has started packing it in. I am amazed at how much he eats. He loves his bottle. He only has it for about one more month, so I'm not sure how he'll deal with giving it up.
He says mama, dada, pretty and this. And maybe bye bye and baba.

He loves Trigger, but does not care for Bella.

The past few weeks, he has not done well in church at all. I've had to take him out the past two Sundays because he would not settle down.

If you look at his mouth, you can see him saying this. He was showing us the leaves saying, "this, this." So cute!
And a picture of the other baby in our house. She's a mess!

Sav A Life Memorial Walk

Our family participated in Sav A Life's Memorial walk today through downtown. It was chilly, so we bundled up to stay warm. Actually, once we got walking, we warmed right up. We met on the steps of the courthouse, sang a few songs, listened to an inspiring message then marched through town carrying signs. It was refreshing to see how many people particpated.
Benjamin was all bundled up. He actually slept in Paul's arms for the entire march.

Sam holding his sign. At first he wanted to hold it. Then he didn't want to hold it. Then he wanted to hold it. 3 year olds- can't live with them, can't live without them! Just kidding!!

Daddy and his little boys.

It was a beautiful, however, chilly day.

God help the babies.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Way Back Wednesday

I found these old pictures of Anna and Ellie and thought they were so cute. Can't believe my girls have gotten so big. These were taken in 1999-Anna was 3 years and Ellie was 3 months.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Several Ways to Make Yourself Miserable

--by Elisabeth Elliott

1. Count your troubles, name them one by one--at the breakfast table, if anybody will listen, or as soon as possible thereafter.
2. Worry every day about something. Don't let yourself get out of practice. It won't add a cubit to your stature but it might burn a few calories.
3. Pity yourself. If you do enough of this, nobody else will have to do it for you.
4. Devise clever but decent ways to serve God and mammon. After all, a man's gotta live.
5. Make it your business to find out what the Joneses are buying this year and where they're going. Try to do them at least one better even if you have to take out another loan to do it.
6. Stay away from absolutes. It's what's right for you that matters. Be your own person and don't allow yourself to get hung up on what others expect of you.
7. Make sure you get your rights. Never mind other people's. You have your life to live, they have theirs.
8. Don't fall into any compassion traps--the sort of situation where people can walk all over you. If you get too involved in other people's troubles, you may neglect your own.
9. Don't let Bible reading and prayer get in the way of what's really relevant--things like TV and newspapers. Invisible things are eternal. You want to stick with the visible ones--they're where it's at now.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Cost of calzones at Johnny's Italian Restaurant: $16.00
Cost of 2 movie tickets to see Mall Cop: $16.00
Cost of spending the evening with my 16 year old son: Priceless

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Mouse

No, we have not caught the mouse yet. He has been mysteriously quiet for several days now. On one had, I'm glad. On the other, I keep wondering where he went and when is he coming back?? I am glad to be back in my bed (although I woke Paul up several times the other night, sure I head something. In my defense, I wasn't awake when I heard these noises. It's a genetic thing handed down from the Adrians!! I hear and see things in my sleep, but swear I'm wide awake. I sure did scare Paul when we first got married and he wasn't used to me yet! Now, he just tells me to go back to sleep.)Where was I?? Oh yeah. The mouse. So for now, I guess all is back to normal. We'll see how long it lasts.

PS- my friend told me today she opened her pantry door and found 4 adult mice and 7 babies. I almost screamed when I heard that!! Bless her heart. She's like me- actually, there is a whole group of us at our church the same way. I told Paul, see, I'm not crazy. Oh yes you are! He said. You're all crazy together. Ok. At least I'm not alone!

Angel Food Ministries

We participated in Angel Food for the first time this month. It is a nationwide organization that seeks to provide some relief from high food prices to families. There is no qualification, no papers to fill out- nothing. You simply order how many packages you want, pay for it, and then pick it up. Their main box is $30 and will feed a family of 4 for about a week.

We received our food today, and there is a lot of it. We ordered 2 boxes because we have a family of 8. We also ordered an extra meat box, full of steak, pork chops and hamburgers. It's quite a bit of food and a lot of meat. I'm pretty sure it will provide dinner for all of us for at least a week, if not more. I'll have to add sides and veggies (although we did get some of those) and bread, but I think it was a good deal.

If you want to check into it, go to the website and see if your area has a participating church. In this day and age, we all can use every break we can get!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Field Trip Day

We went with some friends of our today on a field trip to see an Abraham Lincoln exhibit in a town about an hour away. We were kind of excited about it because we have just finished studying the Civil War and Lincoln, so we felt we knew something about him. Were we ever disappointed! The exhibit was so small, and full of reproductions. Not what we were hoping for. To top it off, it wasn't free or really even cheap. But we then got to tour the Old Governor's Mansion, and that was pretty impressive. We all did enjoy that. However, I couldn't take any pictures inside the house. Here's Benjamin crawling around outside as we waited to go in.

Emily and Benjamin. I jokingly refer to Emily as Benjamin's nanny because when she's around, she is more than happy to play with him. After the mansion, we went to the park and ate lunch and played. It was a bit cold, but the kids had fun anyway. We then went to an old cemetary and walked around. We found many old graves from many wars.
The Indian Wars
Spanish American War

My favorite. This one was actually from the Revolutionary War!

Many Civil War graves

There were many graves of babies and young children. So sad.

We called these two the flower brigade. They walked around and picked up flowers that had blown away and placed them on graves.
They carefully chose which graves to put them on, prefering babies and children. It was sweet.

I called him the stick brigade and had to remind him several times that this was NOT a playground.

This grave is of the first soldier killed from this area in the Civil War.
It was a fun day.

Random Pictures

Samuel's bedhead
Bella, sleepy and comfortable
Benjamin and Ellie
Lazy Dogs!
Guess who also likes the scoobs and snatches them any chance he gets??

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My Mouse Story

In the summer of 1985, I attended teen camp. I had already finished my first year of college, but I went anyway, as sort of a "helper". (Truth was, I had nothing better to do as I didn't have a job and had a few weeks before school started again). The camp was Camp Life, in Bear Mountain, New York. We had attended this camp the year before, and it was hands down, the best youth camp I ever attended- and I had gone every year to many different camps. I was looking forward to going back and having a great time again.

Now, let me fill you in on this camp. Can you say rustic? We slept in cabins, where half of the wall was screening. There was one light, and no other electricity in the cabins. The bathroom was a little walk from the cabins and was an older version of porta potties. It was, uh, not nice. But honestly, we didn't care. It was a well run camp, and our church was excited to be back.

The first night, we turned out the one light, and went to bed. It was kind of nice, kind of like sleeping outside, but with a roof and walls. I lay in bed and closed my eyes and was just nodding off when I heard something that jolted me wide awake. I lay still, listening, hoping that I didn't hear what I thought I did. I heard it again, and apparently, so did anyone who wasn't asleep yet. We turned on the light and watched as several mice scurried around on the floor.

Well, we screamed (of course) and ran for the counselor. She was about 8 months pregnant at the time, sleeping on a cot and now had about 4 teenage girls on that cot with her. She patiently told us to back up so she could sit up. We calmed down a little bit and went back to bed. And heard it again and the same thing happened. We tried again and left the light on a little bit, which seemed to keep the mice away. Eventually everyone fell asleep.

That next night was a repeat of the first. I honestly don't know how I slept at all. The third night I decided to sleep on a top bunk which would be farther from the floor where the mice were. Or so I thought. As I lay in bed and desperately tried to sleep, I heard the now familiar scurrying. But this time it seemed closer. I flipped on the light and what I saw gave me nightmares for years afterward. There was a shelf around the top of the cabin, where the screening ended and the wood began. There was also this type of shelf around the middle of the cabin. On these two shelves were mice, all in a row, running from one end of the cabin to the other. Countless mice. Endless mice. Everyone else had managed to fall asleep. Not me. I sat up in bed, terrified, quoting Scripture.

Like I said, I honestly don't know if I slept at all that week. The mice parade happened the last night we were there too. And one time in the day, a squirrel got in the cabin while we were in there. It was a camp that nightmares are made of. It took me quite a while after the camp to not be skittish at noises. I remember going back to college and talking to one of my friends. She took her eyes off my face and looked at something beyond me and made kind of a surprised face. I screamed. I was like that for a few months.

And now you know why mice terrify me, why I have such an unreasonable fear of them and why I am so skittish, even over 23 years later. Why I don't even have to see them- it's enough to think I hear them.

And now you know how better to pray for me!!

Monday, January 12, 2009


I apologize for not writing more often this past week. Honestly, I haven't taken any pictures or video either. This mouse thing has me so disoriented I'm having a hard time just doing the necessary things. Traps have been set and out for a week, but he hasn't touched them. We think he is in the wall, and somehow comes and goes. I tried sleeping in my room a few times, and when the lights go out, the mouse starts scratching and chewing and I just can't take that. So I've been sleeping on the couch for the past week and it is starting to get to me. The couch is not that comfortable and I don't sleep well on it.

Benjamin has done great without a bottle in bed. It figures now that I've got him sleeping through the night again, I'm not. He's such a sweet baby and Paul and I just enjoy him so much. He still shows little to no interest in walking- he much prefers to crawl.

Samuel received some money for Christmas and he has enjoyed having his own little stash. When we have gone to Goodwill, he has found toys that he wants to buy. Our Goodwill has had their toys 50% off the past few weeks, so he's been able to get quitie a few nice things. It's so cute to watch him, as he insists on paying the cashier himself. And when he gets change, he's so excited that the lady gave him more money back!

Hopefully the mouse will be caught soon and life as we know it will get back to normal.

Friday, January 9, 2009

A Reminder to Myself

Galatians 6:9

And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
(The mouse is alive and well as was proven by his scurrying around at 2 this morning. AGHHH)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


  • Today was a much better day.
  • Benjamin has done great without a bottle in bed. Makes me wonder why I didn't break this habit sooner.
  • Paul, Jr., started classes today. He was very excited and has a bit of homework to do. It's weird not being his teacher anymore.
  • The mouse has not been caught. Everytime I go in my room I make quite a bit of noise so if it's in there, it will hide. I've haven't seen or heard it all day. Maybe it has gone back down the basement?
  • Zack got his driver's permit today. He was so happy to finally have that done with. He's driven a couple times, and other than almost taking down all the mailboxes on the road, he did good.
  • I would get a cat, but I can't. Paul, Jr., is allergic to cats, and well, I would kind of like him to keep breathing. :)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


It's been a week, just today.

I've not had a good day. It started out with Benjamin waking up twice last night. I've let him form a very bad habit of going to bed with a bottle. I know, I know. I did that with my first 2 before I realized how detrimental it is later on and I swore I wouldn't do it again. But I was tired and he was up early and he could hold his own bottle and I said it would only be that one time. That one time turned into every time, and now he wakes up 1 or 2 (or 3) times a night because he can't get back to sleep without the bottle. I feel like I have a newborn in the house! I've been so tired because I've not been sleeping well, and when I'm tired, bad days happen very frequently. (FYI, today was the first day he's gone to bed without a bottle, all day, and surprisingly, he's done real well. We'll see how the night goes.)

About 10AM, Paul Jr., decided he wanted to attend the local community college. This semester. And today was the last day for registration. Well, he actually decided that a while ago, but just got around to doing anything about it today. So, that means I spent several hours this morning putting together his transcript. I really didn't mind doing it, I mean, I am his teacher and all. But I didn't like doing it at the last minute. And because I was busy doing that this morning, laundry didn't get done. The girls schoolwork didn't get checked. The housed didn't stay picked up. The grocery shopping didn't get done. (And there was nothing in the house to eat.)

He said, offhandedly, maybe I should go with him in case there were questions he couldn't answer. So about 3, he and I headed off for the college. Apparently, he wasn't the only one who waited until the last minute. It took us about 3 1/2 hours to register him for college. Actually, it took him 3 1/2 hours. I sat and waited for 3 1/2 hours. Plenty of time to think about what was not getting done at home.

We got home around 6:30. Paul, thankfully, had supper ready. He went all out and made Paul Jr. a steak and shrimp to celebrate his admission to college. It was very nice. After supper, it was discovered that there was a mouse in my room.

A MOUSE! You can imagine what that did for my day. I didn't handle it real well. There were some tears involved and a real quick exit. And tonight, I'm sleeping on the couch. I just can't handle a mouse, even though I'm assured that it's more afraid of me than I am of him. I'm not so sure about that.

So here I sit, in the living room, while everyone else is sleeping. I'm hoping I don't hear anything tonight, but I know full well, that I'll probably hear everything.

Tomorrow's got to be better, right?

Friday, January 2, 2009


Check out that wild hair!
The dogs watching Benjamin intently, to see if he will open the door so they can escape.

He thinks it's all a big game.