Monday, June 29, 2009

Stadium Stairs

Stadium Stairs, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

These are the stairs I ran up and down and up and down and up and down and up and down this morning.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Everything in its Place

I love our coffee corner. When we moved into this house, I deliberately set it up in a certain way; I can stand in front of my coffee maker and have everything I need at my fingertips. The coffee maker is on the counter, between the sink and the fridge. I store the coffee mugs and filters and beans in the cabinet directly above and the trash is in a bin directly below. So I can empty the old filter into the trash, grab a new filter and coffee, and fill the machine with water without even taking a step. I have a grinder there and I can even reach the cream from the fridge. It's perfect!

Our laundry room is a small little room connecting our garage to the kitchen and contains a washer, dryer, freezer, dry sink and lots of shoes. It's also where we keep the pet food and cat litter box. Because of the limited floor space, the litter box ended up directly in front of the washing machine. Inevitably, a clean sock or piece of clothing will fall on its journey to the dryer and land, splat, in the dirty cat litter. I am constantly having to rewash items because of the poor placement of pet poop. It definitely isn't working and I must come up with another solution.

It's amazing how a little advanced planning can result in years of happy usage. And how a little haphazard placement can cause infinite headaches and strife.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

A Scratch for Every Itch

Happiness is having a scratch for every itch. Oqden Nash

Poor Master Munchkin. He has 74 chigger bites!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Rechelle's Angel

Rechelle took this beautiful photo of a weeping angel. I did a 30 second edit in Lightroom - I mostly wanted to get rid of the ugly white bucket behind her. I did a very poor job of cloning it out, but you get the idea. Now the eye goes to the beautiful statue and isn't pulled away by a piece of plastic. Isn't she lovely?

Oh, and by the way:
“Your life could depend on this: Don't blink. Don't even blink. Blink and you're dead. They are fast – faster than you can believe. Don't turn your back. Don't look away, and don't blink! Good luck.”


Well, I passed my belt test last night. I think it was the hardest one yet. Luckily, my instructor was a bit distracted and I was able to slip my wimpy, limpy tornado kick by without close observation. I did get caught on a sloppy body lock though. A short lecture and some grappling later and I emerged from class, sweaty, tired, and sporting a stiff, new brown belt with a black stripe.

Woo Hoo!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Belt Testing

This week the Munchkins and I are testing for our next belt in martial arts. Master Munchkin is testing for his brown and Miss M and I are going for our High Brown belts (brown with a black stripe). I think I'm ready except my tornado kick is still pretty sad. It's sort of like an F1 on the Fujita Scale. And it can only twist one way. :(

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Dog Days

Each summer brings a unique event to the large college town nearby. Each day, hundreds of people gather at dawn and dusk to, well, exercise! Together. In a huge, organized, free exercise orgy. In fact, next month, they will attempt to break the world record for the "World's Largest Community Workout"!

The sleepy little town down the way has it's own version. They meet during the week, morning and night to workout in the local outdoors sports stadium. This group numbers about 100 instead of 1000 and is a little more intimate and family-friendly. Still, it's a unique event - I've never heard of anything like this and there are 2 that meet within 15 minutes of my house!

I've gone to the smaller event twice now, and I am so sore! We run laps around the track, jog up and down the stadium stairs and lunge down the length of the football field. Oh, and do many, many jumping jacks, leg lifts, situps and pushups. Good old fashioned exercise. I'm hoping that attending this exercise group will help to counteract all of the yummy summer food in which I've been indulging, especially all those root beer floats. :) I mean, what's summer with root beer floats?!

Pictures may or may not be forthcoming. This class does meet at Crack-of-Dark-Thirty and I'm lucky to get there fully dressed. :P

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Napping House

The Napping House, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

We are all trying to stay cool here today. It's over 100 degrees!

Tale of 2 Cities

Our house is happily situated between two cities. If I drive one way, I end up in a large college town, complete with all the benefits that come with it - Target, Starbucks, a thriving downtown, lots of yummy restaurants and unique stores, and many artistic opportunities. Of course there's the traffic and bustle too.

If I drive the other direction, I end up in another college town, this one much different. This sleepy little town boasts a small swimming pool, only 2 fast food restaurants, an annual arts festival, and a different pace of life. I love the atmosphere of this small town. Old people sit around and play cards during the day, kids ride their bikes to the pool and walk to the library, passersby greet you on the street. It's quaint and calm.

These cities are each about 15 minutes from my house but I find myself heading to the smaller town more and more often. Tomorrow I'll tell you about one very unique thing that is currently drawing me there.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Happy Monday

HBM, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

Trooper watches as I get a shot for Bench Monday. Next time, we're trading places! ;)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

All Choked Up

On Friday, we worked on this move in our martial arts class. It's pretty easy and surprisingly effective. They show it in slow-mo so you can learn it; obviously you would want to do it much faster in real life. Now grab your favorite person and try it out!

Gut Issues

I guess something a little unusual about our family is that half of us are living with health issues that effect our daily lives. I have Crohn's disease and Miss Munchkin can not eat gluten or dairy. I'll talk about Crohn's in the near future, but today I'd like to touch on what is like to be a teenager on a restricted diet.

Almost 2 years ago, we learned that Miss Munchkin had food sensitivities and they were affecting her mood and behavior. The main offender was gluten. Gluten is a protein that is found in wheat and it is everywhere! Image if you're a teenager. No eating delivery pizza with your friends. No snarfing down fast food hamburgers. Nothing from the local bakery. School lunches? Nope. It was a huge lifestyle change for us. We learned to make bread and pizza dough using rice-based flours. She packs a lunch everyday for school. I send food or snacks with her to parties or overnights with her friends. It's become "normal" for us.

The good news is that it is easier than ever to eat gluten-free these days. You can buy prepackaged mixes for bread, brownies, cake and pizza dough at the grocery store. Our town even has a restaurant with gluten-free items on the menu. Miss Munchkin has learned to prepare her own food and can whip up a loaf of bread or pizza easily in the kitchen.

There are a few main items that she eats on a regular basis that she loves. I think these things help her from feeling like she's missing out. In fact, these are so good that her friends and family are often begging her to share! :)

Chebe pizza crust with soy cheese
Namaste Brownies
Pamela's Gluten free bread
Homemade Reeses PB bars
Silk chocolate soy milk
Chocolate Coconut Larabars
Tofutti's Better Than Cream Cheese

Other staples include beef, fish, fruit, pastas made from rice, Rice Chex cereal, and Earth Balance Butter.

Friday, June 19, 2009


You know how a song gets stuck in your head? This is what has been stuck in my head all this week. I finally figured that sometimes it's just better to give in and sing along. :)


Well, I guess it's official. After almost 2 weeks of tossing names around for our new puppy, we have finally settled on "Trooper". Miss Munchkin is still hoping that the name"Truman" will magically make a comeback, but, since I think she'll come around. To placate her, I told her she could name her firstborn son, "Truman".

I have to tell you, the folks at Google will be raising some eyebrows when they review the recent searches coming from our neck of the woods. Just in case they haven't seen it all yet, they can now add the following to their list:

pooping strings of rawhide
my puppy ran through Roundup
toads poisonous to dogs

I have a feeling that Trooper is going to keep us on our toes for awhile!

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Master Munchkin at Target: "I know this place like the back of my back. Er, more like the front of my back."

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I Feel Pretty

(sing along with me - tune from West Side Story)

I feel pretty.
O so pretty.
I feel pretty and gritty and, HEY!
And I pity any
downwind today.
(la la la la laa la la laaa la la!)

Guess what I spent the morning doing?

After applying liberal amounts of bugspray and sunscreen, I braved the Kansas summer elements and ventured out into our wild, untamed outdoors. Well, at least the weeds are wild and untamed. And, of course, the chiggers.

First I saved our young corn and green beans from being assimilated (sorry, Evil Weeds - you shall not win today!). Then I poisoned the poison ivy that was growing near the house. HA! That felt really good. Then I gave the puppy an emergency bath after he romped through the freshly sprayed ivy patch. Next I planted a flat of Vincas outside our front door. I always plant Vincas there every year because that's what was growing when we moved in, and hey, why mess with success?

Then I shot this cool looking moth on our porch.

Lastly I treated myself to a manicure, using only the finest natural, organic products.

I feel yucky.
Oh so yucky.
I feel yucky and mucky and sore.
And I really hope
that I can crawl to the door.
(la la la la laa la la laaa la la!)


I was curious, does anyone know what the title of my blog is from?

Hint: It's a quote from one of my favorite movies. Now, I know you can Google it, but I would like to know if anyone just knows it.

UPDATE: Yea to Stephanie and Donna - you are ladies after my own heart. Now does anyone know which character said these words and the entire phrase he or she uttered?

Monday, June 15, 2009


Dappled, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

I love how the summer sun brings out his freckles.

Saturday, June 13, 2009


12 - the number of chigger bites I have

48 - how many minutes I spent discreetly scratching today

$750 - the amount I made at our early morning garage sale

10 - tubs of unwanted stuff sitting in my van

27 - the number of cups of lemonaid that spilled on my kitchen floor this afternoon, just moments before Company arrived and mere minutes after the water stopped working in our whole house

9 - how many bath towels it takes to soak up 27 cups of lemonaid

11 - the number of thirsty friends who came to visit

4 - the number of minutes until my head hits the pillow

2:30 - the time my alarm is set to take Puppy for his nightly piddle

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Perfect Young Summer

Happy Summer, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade. ~Gertrude Jekyll

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bench Monday

Bench Monday, originally uploaded by MrsMama.
1. Bench Monday, 2. 365: 6/8/09, 3. bench monday 9, 4. HBM!!, 5. Bench Monday 158::365, 6. Bench Monday: Rainy Day Edition, 7. Untitled, 8. Untitled, 9. Bench Monday: Milk Box Edition

Here's a fun group I found on Flickr. Basically you stand on something and snap your picture then post it to the pool. On Mondays. I think it's very creative and fun. Now what can I stand on?

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Life this Week

Pup is doing really well. He is 10 weeks old now and has learned to "sit" and can play fetch. I've started lessons on the lead and he's doing better than I expected. I think the bites of chicken help. :) Last night was a happy first; he slept in Master Munchkin's room. After a week, it's a relief to have him settled in with the family instead of crated in the basement at night. I still take him out for a mid-night piddle and he is an early riser. This morning I sat on the front porch, drinking coffee, and we saw the sun rise.

I got my hair cut and really like it. It's too short to pull into a ponytail now, which is a good thing. Pony tails are not a flattering look for me! Miss Munchkin can pull off a ponytail beautifully, btw. Sigh.

This week we are purging and preparing for a garage sale. Wow, we have a lot of things we've outgrown or don't use! Yesterday we combed through the bedrooms. Today we'll tackle the kitchen and garage.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

A Dog with No Name

You may be familiar with America's song "Horse with No Name". Well, we have our own little version going on at our house.
You see we live in the country with a dog with no name
I think I might be going insane.
In the country I can't remember his name
'cause there ain't no one here who will settle for plain.
La, laaa, laaaaa, la la la laa..... la laaaa la
Today our new puppy went from Trooper to Tozer to Pippin. But mostly we called him, "Pup".

Of Death and Dysentery

The Munchkins spent some time playing the classic Oregon Trail game together on the computer. It was amusing to listen to some of the dialog coming out of their room. As usual, they managed to put their own spin on the game.
"Mooooom, she made me 55 years old and now my last name is 'Butt'!"

Protesting, "Hey, the second time you got shot to death, I didn't even fire!"

Incredulous, "You sold 100 pounds of bacon!? But I need bacon!"
Ah, good ol' family fun.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Tending the Weeds

I have several friends who are talented gardeners. Their yards are peppered with beautiful flowerbeds and they grow their own vegetables and herbs. I must confess that this is a talent I do not possess. I just spent the morning clearing out my front flower beds and guess what was growing there?

You may remember that last year I grew Poison Ivy. This year the horrible weed has returned only now it has been joined by Poison Hemlock! I kid you not. I am growing Poison Ivy and Poison Hemlock in my flower beds in front of my house! No, not on purpose.

I feel like the village witch.

And have you ever tried to garden with a playful puppy "helping"? He incessantly mouthed on my rubber garden gloves - with me in them. He stole my garden tools. He tackled and ran off with my cushion. He crushed my lovely yellow daylillies. He romped though the Poison Ivy. Repeatedly. He tried to chew the Poison Hemlock, which, you may have figured out, is poisonous! Finally he settled down under the shade of my wheelbarrow. Just long enough for me to finish weeding my beautiful, poisonous, itchy beds.

Thursday, June 04, 2009


When was the last time you did something for the first time?

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Monday, June 01, 2009