Thursday, May 29, 2008

So Sorry...

I'm sorry that I've neglected the blog a bit. We've actually been enjoying some free time now that the boys are out of school and I've been going a little nuts on Facebook. My goodness is that thing addictive. It's fun, though, because I'm talking to people from high school and college that I haven't seen in years. If you don't have a Facebook page, I highly recommend getting one. Then let me know so that I can be your friend! LOL! (How sad is that?)

Anyway, the boys had their last day yesterday. We ended up staying outside until 10pm, mostly because I was chatting with a neighbor, Katie. We were discussing parenting books and our children. She recommended Love and Logic ("I haven't yelled at my kids since Sunday!" she told me) so I've been on the lookout for it. Has anyone else read it? If so, what did you think? I've read so many other books on parenting that haven't worked that I'm a little jaded.

Mikayla came over this morning to invite the kids to her garage sale. They all ran out of the house to take a look at her goods. Daniel came back begging for money for a Sonic the Hedgehog toy. I told him that if he wanted the toy, he'd have to spend his money. He runs upstairs, empties his bank and heads outside. About 2 minutes later, I see Sonic running through my backyard. Seriously? Yep...this Sonic is every bit as big as Hannah. We've taken to calling it Humongous Sonic. Daniel loves it, though.

Anyway, I guess that's it for now. I'm heading back over to my Facebook page now! LOL! (I blame Angi for all of this!!! I was fine until she asked me to be her friend!)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Cool Clouds

Check out this very cool cloud. It looks awesome. Of course, I wouldn't want to be in its path. If you scroll down to the post after the cloud photo, there's an interesting thing on tornadic activity. KCK is the #9 most tornado-prone city for the month of June in the country. KCMO is #15 and Overland Park (right by us) is #19. Very interesting reading.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

You Know You Grew Up in Tornado Alley If...

(an appropriate subject since we're currently under a tornado watch...I've added my thoughts on some)

You know you grew up in tornado alley if...

The first thing you do if you hear tornado sirens during the day is check your watch to see if it's noon. (10am on the first Tuesday or Wednesday wherever I've lived)

You don't get worried unless the sky looks "green".

You use the word "tornado" as a verb.

You might go indoors when there's a tornado, but you won't "seek shelter" for anything less than an F3.

You know what Doppler radar, Hook echo, wall cloud, and rain-wrapped all mean. (I've just learned a new one...bow echo)

You've never exactly memorized the tornado precautions, but you've heard them enough times that you know them by heart anyway.

Watching the weather is entertaining. And red on the Doppler radar is exciting.

The phrase "Tornado on the ground, take your immediate tornado precautions" sends exciting shivers up your spine.

You've seen photos/videos of tornadoes and said, "Wow, that's a nice one!"

You can feel/smell tornado weather brewing a few hours before the storm actually begins.

There's an odd feeling as though you've misplaced something if you make it all the way to June without a tornado warning near you.

You think people that live in earthquake and/or hurricane prone areas are crazy.

You know what people are talking about when they mention the "May 3rd/Moore" tornado and the "Greensburg/May4th" tornado.

You watch the movie Twister just so you can point out all the inaccuracies in it.

You know your weathermen by their first names. (Gary, Jeremy, Brett)

When you hear the tornado sirens go off, you go outside to watch the storm and take pictures.

Most of the tornado video footage comes from everyday people with camcorders instead of from actual news/weathermen.

You're sure there's a giant tornado magnet hidden somewhere in Moore. And that there are smaller ones distributed throughout trailer parks.

You don't consider it windy until the wind speed is faster than 30mph.

You are highly entertained by people from outside tornado alley when there is a tornado watch.

You learned that some other states don't have tornado drills from this list.

There's enough random stuff in your tornado shelter that you could live there for a year.

You stand under your carport or open your front door to watch hail and/or thunderstorms. (I love my front porch!!! We've watched so many storms roll in from there)

You know the difference between a basement, a cellar, and a storm shelter. (We have a safe room...ooohh la la)

The weather is a completely acceptable subject for conversation, at any time, for any occasion.

Your local mall has "tornado shelter" signs posted.

It doesn't bother you the next day to find out that your area was under a tornado watch the night before and you had no idea. Unless, of course, it caused you to miss some interesting cloud formations.

Getting to "play" in the basement/cellar/storm shelter numbers among your favorite childhood memories.

You keep matches, candles, and candle holders in more than one place in your house.

Your town will never get hit by a tornado because you're between two rivers or because an old Indian legend says so.

You complain about severe weather reports that interrupt the TV show you're watching. (why they need to cancel programming for a county with 3 people in it is beyond me LOL!)

You can get together all your most important possessions in 2 minutes flat.

When tornado sirens woke you up in the middle of the rolled over and went back to sleep.

You've ever tried to reassure someone by saying that "if anything forms it will only be a little tornado"...and couldn't understand why this didn't calm them down any.

It's normal for your area to be under a tornado watch for multiple days in a row.

When looking at houses/buildings you give them a "tornado survival ranking". i.e., how big of a tornado it would take to destroy it.

You've ever asked (probably w/ disdain) "Don't they know the difference between a warning and a watch?" (I've been known to roll my eyes when Mike's asked "now, what's a watch mean again?")

You know what towns/cities a tornado normally passes through before coming your way.

From watching radar maps, you've heard of almost every small town in your state. And you know what towns are around them, but you have no idea where in the state they are.

You laughed at everything in this list, but you also respect a tornado's power. And you know that after it's over, clean-up and re-building has to begin.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Grey's Season Finale

I have not been very happy with Grey's since it came back from the writer's strike. Mostly because my Meredith and Derek broke up...again. They had Derek dating Rose the nurse but working on a clinical trial with Meredith. I had a feeling they'd wait until the last episode for someone in the trial to make it through surgery, and that's what they did. And yay for Meredith who finally got over her crappy childhood (I thought it was funny to see Meredith in therapy). I just couldn't figure out how they were going to get Mer and Derek back together, but they did. This scene made the whole crappy season worthwhile. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

A Bit of Good News

Hannah's feeling better today. She did get some sleep, but she's still pretty crabby. I guess that's to be expected.

Jacob had a falling-out with a friend yesterday and, true to form, decided he was too sick to go to school. I made him go anyway, knowing that the reason he's "sick" is because he doesn't want to deal with the friend. I got a call from the school nurse around 10:30 asking me to come pick him up. I hate that. He has Mrs. H wrapped right up around his finger.

When we went to pick up Daniel, I was swarmed by several kids from Jacob's class. Nicole was the first one to tell me that Jacob was elected Student Ambassador for next year. Then Brandon came over to tell me. Jacob just shrugged his shoulders and said, "I didn't know I was running!" LOL! Student Ambassador is a huge honor for 4th and 5th graders. There are only a handful from those grades asked to become one. What they do is help new students become acquainted with the school, give tours (we got a tour from Student Ambassadors when we first arrived) and are the school's representatives on other occasions. They are nominated by and voted on by the other kids in their class. I'm pretty proud!

We were walking back to talk to Ms. P, Jacob's teacher, about it when I was ambushed by Mrs. P, the school counselor. I've been dodging her for about a month now. She wants to know what our plans for Daniel are. I told her that I'd leave her a voice mail. Should be an easy one that will go a little like this, "we've decided to let Daniel be Daniel and are choosing to do nothing." I suppose I could have told her that this afternoon but I didn't want to get into it with all three kids with me. The woman's killing me.

Through Facebook, I was able to reconnect with a college friend. She pointed out that I found her 10 years, almost to the day, since we last saw each other. I thought that was cool. I've thought a lot about her since we're currently living where she grew up. It's always fun to find old friends.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Time to Play

Well, I did keep Jacob home from baseball tonight. I didn't feel bad about it. Not at all. The kids finally got a chance to hang out with the neighborhood kids and enjoyed most of it (get any group of kids together and they'll find something to fight about).

A new family moved into the house (kind of) behind us this past winter. No one had really seen or heard from them ever. Until today. They had a big wooden swing set installed this morning and every kid within a two street radius came over to play. They are a really nice family. Katie and I were trying to figure out where the dad is from. We think some Caribbean country. They have a very nice second grade girl and a 4 year old girl. So, between four houses who's backyards connect, we have two swing sets, a trampoline and a pool (ours). It's become a mini-park out there.

Poor Hannah...her medicine's making everything drain, which is a good thing, but it's making her cough every 5 seconds. She didn't sleep much last night and was exhausted today. She slept, briefly, this morning and afternoon. She went out to play for about 5 minutes and came in to sleep. Later, she asked to ride her bike and got to the end of the driveway before she decided she'd had enough. I hope she gets some rest tonight. It's killing me to see her like this.

Why, oh Why?

I think it's venting day. I'll add my two cents...

Why is it that I just can't get myself motivated to do much of anything? The house is a pit. It's been a week since it was cleaned and it's just a disaster. I also have no idea what I'm going to make for dinner since I really haven't been to the store (except to pick up medicine, milk and cereal) in a while. I hate that Hannah's sick all of the time. Every time she gets sick, I get sick. I'm just waiting for it. I'm tired of having an activity all of the time. I feel like I'm constantly taking someone somewhere. I'm angry because Jacob's coach added batting practice tonight, the one night that I can count on not having anything. I don't think he's going to go. I won't have to feel bad about it if it rains (which it looks like it's going to). Oh, and my new cell phone doesn't work and the passenger side sliding door broke (I managed to patch up the chain that broke with some mighty putty. Works okay now).

I'm just burnt out on everything. Only 3 1/2 days until the boys are out for the summer. That should help.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

No End In Sight...

I took Hannah in for her ear re-check this morning. Her right ear is now, officially, clear. Yay! Her left, however, is exactly the same as it was at the end of April. The doctor says she thinks Hannah might now have a sinus infection but wanted to do an x-ray to find out. She'd also like to put Hannah on another allergy controller medication, in addition to the Singulair. Oh, and let's up the mg's on the Singulair from 4mg to 5mg. She writes me a new prescription for Singulair and hands me the referral for the outpatient imaging place and tells me to go straight there.

We go to the imaging place and we're the only ones there. Nice since we were in and out in 20 minutes. We also found out that she does have a sinus infection. They'll be calling in a prescription for an antibiotic (not another one!!!!!) and for Rhinocort. I'm now really getting concerned about the amount of antibiotics she's been taking.

Hannah thinks the nose spray is hysterical. She's actually upset that she only takes it once a day. Anyway, they won't talk tubes until the sinus infection's cleared up. Hopefully, everything will resolve itself with all of this stuff. I do believe it's allergist time. We go back into the doctor for another recheck in 21 days.

The saga continues...

Monday, May 19, 2008


This was a strange weekend. We set up the new pool (we had to get a new one because I was too lazy to bring the old one in for the winter) on Friday. First thing Saturday morning, the kids wanted to swim. I thought they were nuts because the water was freezing. Granted, it was 85 degrees outside, but dang that water is cold. They didn't seem to care much. At one point, we had as many as 8 kids in the pool.

While the kids were in the pool, we heard F-18's going by. They must have gone by about 8 times. Just circling the house. It was really cool. They were so low that you could almost read the writing on the plane. I guess there was an air show at one of the little local airports. Nothing like two F-18's going over your house to bring out the neighbors. Literally everyone was out on their decks, staring straight up in the air.

At some point in the afternoon, I pulled a message from Mike (he'd gone to the main academy for Saturday training like he usually does) off of the phone. He said that he was at the hospital because he'd taken a kick to the ribs and was having a hard time breathing. They ran a bunch of scans and stuff and nothing's broken but he's bruised up pretty bad. They wrote him some prescriptions and sent him home. I can't even imagine the pain. He did get calls from Master Dave and Grandmaster Lee this afternoon making sure he was okay. Yet another reason I like our TKD school.

While Mike was at the hospital, a hummingbird flew into our garage. It was neat, at first. But then, it became annoying. This was probably the dumbest bird I've ever seen. He couldn't figure out how to get out. He kept flying into the ceiling and walls. He'd hang out on top of the garage door and then fly into the wall. All he had to do was fly down about two feet and then go out the big garage door. How hard is that? He finally figured it out Sunday afternoon. Daniel had walked into the garage with a light up toy and the hummingbird followed that light right out. I didn't realize hummingbirds were that dumb. LOL!

Saturday, I also did 6 loads of laundry. I hate laundry with a passion. I managed to switch out most of the kids' winter clothes for summer ones and their closets are now stuffed with warm weather gear. It doesn't seem like they've grown much so all of the clothes they wore last year are getting another go-round. The only thing I need to get is more shorts for Hannah. She only has one pair. Good thing she has a lot of little sundresses.

Sunday was the kids' last day of Sunday School for the school year. Mike was having a hard time just sitting up, so I took them by myself. After classes were over, everyone met in the time for worship area (that's what Hannah called it since the Rabbi always yells "time for worship!" every Sunday). Each grade level did a skit or song telling everyone where their tzedakah (offering) money went. I honestly can't remember where the first graders sent their money (I think it was some Israeli dog and cat organization) but the third graders actually got in touch with a unit of the Israeli Army and their money went to them. They sent photos and exchanged letters throughout the year. After that, they showed a slide show of the kids throughout the year. It was very cute.

The synagogue also held their used book fair yesterday. Like I needed more books, but at 50 cents a piece, it was hard to resist. I picked up a book called Modern Jewish Cooking that was printed in 1952. A lot of the recipes call for a pressure cooker, which must have been the big gadget at the time. Most of the recipes were familiar but there were some really strange ones. The author goes into detail about the joy of cooking with calves' brains and lungs (you have to buy the whole lungs with the heart. Just remove the esophagus.) It's fun to go through it. All in all, I picked up 16 books for $8. A few books for summer reading and several books for the kids.

This is the last full week of school for the boys. I can't tell you how excited I am about that.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Hannah's Last Day

Well, this is my baby girl's last day as a preschooler. She has a program later this afternoon and then she's done. She seems to think that she starts kindergarten next week. I keep telling her that she doesn't go until after the summer's over. I'm not sure if I'm ready for the constant, "do I go to kindergarten today?" questions.

When I dropped her off, she wanted me to go in with her so that I could see her give her teacher the frame Hannah made for her. It's a 5x7 frame that Hannah painted and then decorated and we wrote I love you Mrs. M., Hannah 2008 on it. We also put in a photo of Mrs. M and Hannah at the pumpkin farm last fall. When Mrs. M opened it, she started crying, so I started crying and have had a hard time stopping. I'm sure I'll cry all the way through the program, too.

Anyway, here's Hannah on her very last day of preschool. I just love this picture of her.

Here's Hannah last September on her first day of school. What a difference a school year makes!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I'm a Genius!!!

All three of the kids are very heavy sleepers. It takes a lot to wake them up. I credit never being quiet around them when they were sleeping as infants. I was able to vacuum under their cribs while they were sleeping and they wouldn't wake up. Anyway, Hannah is still my best sleeper...she's usually asleep before we even turn off the light at night. The boys are a completely different story. They believe it's playtime. It drives me nuts. I do not want to have to sit outside their door just so that they'll settle down enough to go to sleep. While they were brushing their teeth tonight, I came up with an idea...

"The first person to fall asleep tonight gets $1!" I tell the kids. "Second person gets $.75 and the third person gets nothing. However, if I don't hear anyone tonight, everyone gets $1." (Make sense? Yeah, it didn't to me either LOL!)

I have never seen three kids so eager to go to bed in my life. Clearly, I'm not above bribing. And, yes, I do have $1 for each of them in the morning. A calm evening without yelling is totally worth $3 to me.

Mid-week Post

Yesterday was the last MOPS meeting of the semester. It was sad because it was Hannah's last MOPS ever. Her teachers (the church has staff sitters that work daily) and I were sad but she was like, "see ya!" LOL! I'm considering a Bible Study over the summer so she'll probably get to see her teachers for a few more weeks anyway. For the last meeting, they set up a Spa Day. It was nice. They had people there to make us mochas and lattes, manicures and pedicures and facials. Of course, mochas are not on my diet but that didn't stop me from having two. I simply cannot turn down a peppermint mocha.

We also did the Secret Sister reveal and I found out that I was completely wrong about who my secret sister was. I thought it was Lori from my table and it turned out to be Maggie (like you know who Maggie or Lori are!) She gave me a Starbucks gift card and a great bag that you can put photos on the side of. It was funny because I was wondering why she was all over me as soon as I walked through the door, I mean, I have really just gotten to know her in the past month or so. The girl that I was secret sister for was very...ummm...unappreciative. "Thanks for all of the little things," she said to me. Uh, okay. Have a nice day.

My table has decided to get together, at least, on the Tuesdays that we would have had MOPS over the summer. We figure that we've already got that block of time empty so it's perfect for meeting. It'll be strange not sitting with them next year.

We've gotten most of the yard planted for the year. I'd like to mulch the beds but I don't know when I'll get to that. With all of the perennials that I planted last year, there wasn't a lot to plant. I did fill up the planters with annuals and put some around the front of the house. I need to get out and weed. It's hard to tell what's weeds and what's not since there are so many real plants coming up. I did mark where I'd planted perennials but they disappeared over the winter. I figure I'll wait another month or so to do the real heavy duty weeding unless it's clearly a weed.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Well, Well, Well

I'm 98% sure Hannah's got chicken pox. She had the booster vaccine about a week and a half ago and started with one little bump on her cheek the other day. Yesterday, she had a patch of bumps on her elbow and on her tush. I thought she just got into something. Today, her teacher was pushing her along a zip line thing at the park and I noticed her arms were completely covered. After being examined by about 10 other moms and teachers, it was pretty much determined that it's chicken pox. I asked her preschool's director if she'd like Hannah to stay out (even though it is the last week of school) and she told me no. It was her understanding that chicken pox from the vaccine was not nearly as contagious (that's what the pediatrician told me too) and that she was sure that everyone had already been vaccinated anyway. The other moms there didn't seem to care either.

So, she's got a real good case of it. It's on her arms, butt, face, waist, and some on her legs. They don't seem to be too itchy but they do bother her a little. Well, that's one less thing to worry about!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

Even though it is pretty much over by now. I hope everyone enjoyed theirs.

I don't know what the weather's been like where you all are, but it's been cold and windy here for much too long. It's getting really old. And, our longest dry streak has been 3 days. I'm not all that upset about the rain since it means I don't have to do any watering but ugh. It's enough already.

Jacob had baseball pictures Saturday afternoon. We weren't sure if they were going to happen because it would try to rain every 20 minutes or so. Luckily, the rain held out until after the photos were over so we didn't have to reschedule. He has his first game tomorrow and the rescheduled rain out game from last week will be on Friday. With TKD testing quickly approaching, we're not sure if he's going to go to baseball practice on Thursday. There's another "ugh." Baseball practice. Every Thursday until the end of the season is baseball practice. We were sent at least 5 e-mails telling us that they'd be in Leawood (almost to the Missouri border and and around 119th Street). Not really that big a deal except for the fact that they start at 5:15 and go to 6:45. TKD is from 5:30-6:30 (it takes 20 or so minutes to get from TKD on 151st St. to Leawood). There is no way I could get all three kids to and from their activities on time. Luckily, we had it all figured out but it was still stressful. So, last Thursday, everyone met up at Leawood and we were all complaining about the distance. Then, we realized our coach wasn't there. Someone called and it turned out that he had told us the wrong field. Five times. Fortunately, the correct field is about 3 minutes from TKD so it won't be an issue. Phew.

Daniel had his first grade sing on Friday. Katie (Gwen's mom) took Hannah home with her so that I wouldn't have to pull her out early and I met Mike there at the school. It was quite a long program. Daniel was very nervous since he had a line or two that he had to do by himself. He did great, though. At one point, all of the kids stood up and he fell over. I don't think that anyone really noticed except for me and Mike but he was embarrassed. After, we went back to the classsrooms to pick up stuff and there were so many cute books, made by the kids, for us to take home. It's just now hitting me that the school year's almost over. This is Hannah's last week of preschool and the boys are out the Wednesday after Memorial Day. Where has this year gone?

We took the kids to see Speed Racer on Friday night. What a horrible movie. Of course, I was the only one that hated it. The kids and Mike thought it was awesome. The only good parts were the ones with Matthew Fox in it. My goodness he's good looking. Anyway, the kids have been asking to see it again (no). We're looking forward to the Indiana Jones movie. At least I am.

This morning, I was woken up by Daniel holding a Mother's Day poem for me. He was so cute and so excited with what he made. Each one of them made me some great cards. Unfortunately, I was so crabby and irritable this morning that it was hard to enjoy anything. I blame it on the diet. Freaking diet. I decided it's Mother's Day and diet rules don't apply today. This evening we went to Chili's for dinner and all I wanted to eat was their Southwestern Eggrolls. So, I got that and some spinach and artichoke dip for dinner. And I ate Jacob's cinnamon apples. I felt guilty for about 2 minutes. I've been so good on this darn thing that I deserved a day to eat whatever I wanted to. I even wrote it all in my food diary. Those eggrolls will keep me going for the next month or so.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Hannah and Her Brothers

Monday was such a beautiful day that we were outside a lot. At one point, Hannah asked if she could go up the street and ask Lisa to come out and play. I guess Lisa's mom (Beth) told Hannah that Lisa could not come out front since she (Beth) was busy with the baby but Hannah was more than welcome to play with Lisa in the backyard. She told me to come back down and ask me if it was okay. Hannah did come back down but told me that Lisa's mom was really busy so Lisa couldn't play, then Hannah ran to play with the other kids on the street.

Yesterday, Beth calls to see if Hannah could come over to play with Lisa for a while. She then asked what happened yesterday because Hannah never came back. Beth laughed when I told her that Hannah said that Lisa couldn't play. She thought that's what probably happened. Hannah had her shoes on and was halfway out the door before I got off of the phone.

Apparently, they had a very Barbie/baby doll playdate. Lisa also set up a tea party for when Hannah first arrived and they did that for about an hour. This playdate seemed to unlock the little girl that's been beaten down by all of the boy stuff. She came home and pulled out her Baby Alive and other dolls and even took one to TKD last night.

She set up Leah (her Baby Alive's name) so that she could "watch and learn" while Hannah did TKD. Bob, a third-degree black belt and one of the school's teachers, thought it was funny. I think he has a soft spot for Hannah anyway. At some point during class, all of the boys thought it would be funny to taunt the doll. Of course this made Hannah mad. I pulled the doll down so that she could sit next to me and to hopefully stop the taunting. Jacob and Daniel didn't stop for the rest of the night and it made me so angry. They were making fun of the diapering and feeding and the general idea of doll play. No wonder she didn't want to play with her dolls and stuff around them.

Before she went to sleep last night, Hannah snuggled her babies in their crib for the night. It was pretty cute. When she woke up this morning, she discovered that her babies were gone and had no idea where they went. I looked at Jacob and he just sighed. Then he told me that Daniel went into Hannah's room last night, grabbed the dolls and hid them behind Jacob's door. Do I believe Jacob had nothing to do with it? No. Anyway, I told Jacob to go get the dolls and bring them to Hannah. He comes downstairs holding the dolls by their feet like they were toxic waste. I told him that it was too bad that doll cooties were all in their feet. He didn't like that too much.

Anyway, this morning has been filled with diaper changes, bottles and feeding. Hannah tells me that they need a nap soon. As bad as this is probably going to sound, it's so cute to see her being a girl.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Yeah, Baby!!!

10 pounds down...35 to go!!!!

I was really down on the whole diet thing this weekend. I was certainly getting fed up with it, but now that I'm down 10 pounds in three weeks, I've got to keep going! Yay me!!!

We Had a Weekend?

Well, we had a good weekend but it was a little busy for my taste. Friday night, we went to the MOPS and POPS dinner. Poor Mike thought that he was going to be going to a father/daughter dance and was disappointed when it was a dinner date with me. LOL! It was fun to hang out with some of my MOPS friends and have a nice, catered dinner. We got home a little after 9 and everyone crashed soon after.

Saturday, we went over to the library for Asian Day. Our TKD school was putting on a presentation and everyone was asked to participate. It was cool because Jacob got to do form, one-steps and spar. He also got to break a board. I think he really liked that part, especially since he didn't know they wanted him to. Hannah got to do her form and some one-steps. Daniel got to spar and do his form. After the demonstration, we hung out at the library with some others and did some of the other activities. We all got our names translated into Chinese and got to sample some Asian snacks. Jacob's favorite activity was making a fan and he's been using this new skill all weekend.

After the library, we decided it would be fun to go see Iron Man. I decided to go under protest. We were in the biggest theater I've ever seen (they must use it for IMAX) and the kids were all snuggled into their seats. A few times, Hannah asked me if I was sure we were seeing Iron Man because he doesn't show up until at least halfway through. Of course, once he appeared (and every single time for the rest of the movie), she'd scream, "IRON MAN!!! IT'S IRON MAN!!!" LOL! I can't remember the last time I've seen the kids so into something for as long as they were. They were glued to the screen. At one point, Daniel was so into the movie that he actually stood up and was questioning, in earnest and panic, why something was happening. It was so cute and funny. I do have to say that, aside from enjoying the kids' enjoyment of the movie, it really wasn't that bad. I'd even go so far as to say that I'd be willing to see it again.

We lost Volcano on Friday. For those of you that don't remember, Volcano was Jacob's fire-bellied toad. He was cool with it, but immediately asked if he could get another. So, after the movie, we headed to the pet store and picked up two new toads. Look, they're cheap enough and we already had the crickets! ;) Anyway, we are now the proud owners of Frogish and Jetski. They are crazy active. Much more so than the other one was. (Hence the name Jetski) Hannah wanted a little pet so we picked up a betta fish for her. His name is Swimmy Swimmer. I wonder how long he'll last.

Sunday, we had Sunday School and Family Service. We always enjoy Family Service, even though it's a pain to get up and get there. After services, I decided to mow the lawn. Because of all of the rain, the lawn, in some places, was (literally) up above my mid-calf. That bastard took me two hours (should have taken 45 minutes) and two gas fill-ups. I'm sore and tired. I guess it was a good workout, though.

The kids were outside all afternoon and evening. They played with almost every obscure child on this street and on the next one over. Children I've never seen before were pouring out of their houses. One of the kids had a toy rifle and they all decided to play some sort of war. It looked like a lot of fun. They fought me tooth and nail when I called them in for the night after 8pm.

We also got our first grilling done of the season. Grilled chicken. Yum. Of course, it's not as good without the sauce (no sauce for me...friggin' diet) but it was still grilly goodness.

Holy cow...I need a weekend to recover from my weekend! I'll post pictures from the TKD demonstration later.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Wild Weather

***You can read about some of the storm's aftermath by clicking this link or this link
The weather radio went off again around 1am to tell us about a tornado watch. Seriously, I didn't need to get up at 1am for a tornado watch. I head back to bed. Some time later (I think around 1:30am (I could be could have been later), it goes off again. I'm pretty sure I would have slept through it if Mike hadn't woken me up. I go downstairs and see that it says Severe Thunderstorm Warning. I shut off the alarm, unplug it, head back upstairs (with the radio so I don't have to go back downstairs if it goes off again), plug it in by the bed and cover it with a pillow. I think it's about this time that Mike takes the dog out. He tells me that the power had gone out. Then, he flips on the bedroom light and tells me what time it is so that I can reset my alarm clock (we each have our own). I notice that there's a lot of lightning and think, "I should take a look outside." The next thing I know, it's 6:55am.

I come downstairs to make the kids breakfast and turn on the TV. Our local guys are covering the aftermath of all of the storms. The damage just to our north is incredible. I look at the weather blog and see that we got hit with a massive storm around 2am. The one I slept through. Apparently, the winds in this storm were the same as a category 1 hurricane (70mph winds). I guess there was a huge bow echo which explains the high winds. Wow. It's awesome that there seems to be no damage in our area...even Hannah's bike (which was accidentally left out during all of this) was sill in the exact same spot as it was yesterday.

The kids are still talking about the storms last night. They, too, slept through the overnight storm but were shaken by the tornado warnings from the evening. Hannah keeps asking if we're going to have a tornado today. Poor baby. Unfortunately, it's a reminder that we do live in Tornado Alley.

We ended up with just under 2" of rain yesterday. That's a lot of rain for less than 12 hours. Luckily, the backyard's not flooded too much. Our neighbor has a bare spot in his yard with a big puddle in it. The birds are loving that as a birdbath. Hopefully we'll have some calm weather for a while

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Oh What a Night...Kansas Edition

We had howling winds today. Crazy wind. It was very warm today, too...80's warm. That was great. I picked up the kids from school and got them ready for the crazy evening that was in store for us...although it turned out to be much crazier than originally anticipated.

We go to TKD and notice that the clouds are beginning to build. I'm a little surprised because the storms weren't supposed to start until around midnight. I have to admit, I was hopeful for lightning or rain so that Jacob's game would be cancelled. I really didn't want to sit and watch the game tonight. He was excited, though, because it was his first game...and he was all uniformed up. He looked awesome. Anyway, we got everyone changed and headed to the field.

As soon as we get close, I notice that there are a lot of cars leaving. We're early so I'm suspicious that games had been cancelled. I also don't see any players on any field (there are about 20 fields). Hmmm. Jacob starts to complain that there had better be a game. We pull into the lot and I see Jacob's coach with some of his teammates. We park and head over. He immediately tells me that all games have been cancelled because of lightning. Jacob's furious. He says, "I got dressed for NOTHING!" His coach says, "well, at least you look good! We could possibly lose every game this season, but at least we'll do it in style!" LOL! They do look pretty sharp.

We head back to the van and Jacob's still grumbling. I ask the kids if they'd like to go to Caroline's (the ice cream place next to TKD) for some ice cream. They say they'd like ice cream but not from there. I ask if they'd like DQ and they say yes. So, off to DQ we go.

We pull into the drive through and I look in my rear view. Behind me is a TKD mom (her son does TKD but her daughter plays softball) who also had a game around the same time as us. I poke my head out the window and start laughing. She laughs too. Apparently, her daughter's team was already on the field when they came over the intercom and told everyone to get off of the field and the games were cancelled. She asked if I made it to the field and I told her yes. About then, my cell phone rings and it's Dad asking if we've blown away yet. I tell him that there's an ominous cloud and lots of lightning but nothing else. I hang up with him, finish my conversation with the TKD mom, grab our ice cream and start for home.

Because I had been told to take my weather radio to the game, I had it sitting on the back seat. We're almost halfway home when the darn thing starts going off. Jacob hands it to me and it says TORNADO WARNING. Just then, the sirens start going off. For some reason, I grab the phone and call Dad to let him know that we just may blow away after all. I look to my north and I see this cloud. Looks very suspicious to me...if that's it (it turned out to be it), I don't have a lot to worry about since it's heading away from me. Just get home...just get home.

We pull into the driveway and I tell the kids to head straight for the basement. Hannah's the only one that does and gets scared because she's alone. Jacob immediately turned on channel 8 (NBC here in KC) and Gary Lezak's on talking about the storms. Then, the weather radio goes off again. TORNADO WARNING is scrolling across again. Here come the sirens. Okay guys, now we really need to head downstairs. The kids grab their blankets and lovey things and head to the basement while I'm searching for pets.

I grab Oriana and head to the basement. "What about Ruby?" asks Jacob. "Alright," I say and head back upstairs to get Ruby. I catch sight of Gary on TV saying that the funnel isn't really near us, so I tell the kids they can come back up. I look outside and see Skytracker (NBC's helicopter) and call the kids over (I think I was on the phone with Dad at this point). It was cool to actually see Skytracker and look on the TV and see the cloud that's right over my house. The kids got a kick out of it, too.

We start to relax when the sirens go off again. Seriously? Back to the basement. The kids decide to stay for the duration (probably the best move) and are fascinated by the weather that's unfolding before them via Gary Lezak and the TV. Mind you, I didn't get Ruby the last time because she was hiding. I'm told to go back up and get her. Fine. I grab her and put her in her little cage and take her downstairs.

"Where's Guillermo?" Asks Daniel. Hold on. I head back upstairs again. I grab Guillermo (and take a look outside...rain like I've never seen before...insane, nuts rain.) then head back downstairs.

I'd been trying to get hold of Mike and kept getting his voice mail. Grrrr. Around 8, he finally calls to tell me he's heading home. "Don't you know there's a Tornado Warning?" I yell into the phone (as the sirens are going off) "Really? Huh," he says. He goes on to tell me that he's going to stop and get we need anything? Seriously! LOL!

After a little while, the warning expires and we finally head back upstairs. I forgot the weather radio in the basement and was settling in on the couch when it starts to go off again. SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING is scrolling this time. Hannah's freaking out because it's been about an hour of Tornado Warnings and she's really scared. Jacob's got snacks and his blanket all ready to go downstairs and I tell them that it's nothing to really worry about...everyone can stay where they are. Around this time, Mike walks in the door, unaware of the weather happenings of the night. I may have to get our TKD school a weather radio.

Just as we're getting ready to head to bed, the freaking weather radio goes off again!!! TORNADO WARNING scrolls across for the umpteenth time. We turn back to NBC and Gary says that it's for the extreme southeast portion of our county. Alright, everyone upstairs and brush your teeth.

We are currently under a Tornado Watch. Ugh.

More storms are on their way and should be here around 2AM. Hopefully it's just rain. Please let it just be rain.