Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Grandma

My grandma died in 2001 at the age of 81. But she is one of my favorite people, and every March 31 I think of her.
She was married at the age of 15, and gave birth to my mom at age 16. Can you imagine doing that today? Wait, I guess it would be possible if you live on the YFZ Ranch or in Appalachia...

Anyway. She was so much fun. We usually had the gift of her visits for Thanksgiving every year. Idaho got her for Christmas. She was a tiny 5'2, and probably 100 lbs. She was known for her baking skills, and always made the yummiest things; most notably her rolls, peanut butter fingers and mint cookies.
She always mopped the floor with a rag after dinner, always drank orange metamucil right before bed, and kissed on the lips. She loved spice gumdrops, read romance novels, and loved her "play" Another World. Time stopped every day to watch that soap!
The three of us (mom, grandma and me) would brave black Friday every year after Thanksgiving. The last time we went was when I was pregnant with Jillian. The two of them ran circles around me and my swollen ankles. After that year, for some reason, we started getting her for Christmas instead of Thanksgiving. It was great!

She and my grandpa drove school buses. She lost her husband suddenly at the age of 55 and never remarried. After he died she sold the buses and worked as an Elementary School Aide. Right up until she died, she sent checks to my kids for their birthdays. Her bedroom was filled with pictures of her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and even a couple great-great grandchildren.
I loved her so much, and we always knew that she loved us unconditionally. Happy Birthday Grandma!
(edited to add: I looked up "school bus" and tried to find the proper spelling of the plural...every place I looked spelled it TWO ways, "buses" and "busses." I've now looked at the word so much that it looks like a different language to me. So pick which one you like. Good grief.)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

My snuggle bunny

This is how my baby went to sleep last night...all squooshed in with her animals. She's so silly and yummy:)
In honor of Robert Frost's Birthday:
"The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep."
"There never was any heart truly great and generous, that was not also tender and compassionate."

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Jillian's New Horn

There are a number of things wrong with Jillian's car. It needs to be inspected, so it needed new tires, a horn that works, and a new muffler.

My ingenious husband figured out that it doesn't matter WHERE the horn is...the car just has to HAVE one that WORKS... So he rewired it and put a doorbell in the dashboard. Who would've dreamed? We're all laughing, and Jill actually said "I hope it involves duct-tape...I'd love to have duct-tape holding my car together!"

Whoo hoo to my beloved who isn't afraid to start tearing things apart...so far he has generally managed to fix whatever needs fixing around here!
You can go to Jill's blog for the entire car/horn story. It's pretty funny. And involves a 2:30am wake up call...

more artwork

The boy is still working on getting the grafitti out of his system. He did the lampshade...I wonder what will be next?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Green Stuff

Grace getting ready to follow the leprechaun's trail to the treasure...

She was so happy today because she got to wear GREEN hair bows and her green necklaces to school! She usually has to wear a uniform and we're getting pretty tired of red, yellow, blue and white:)
Drinking her non-alcoholic Jones Soda for dinner. Why are the Irish so "known" for their drinking problems? I was so bugged when all I could find in the stores this year were miniature green shot glasses, HUGE Beer Mugs and other paraphernalia with guiness or beer on it. All the real Irish people I know are dry. Ok. They're Mormons. But still! I would've bought something that said "Kiss me I'm Irish!" but it wasn't to be found amidst the alcoholism.
Anyway. After dinner I walked into the living room and beheld this sight. The camera was handy...and the boy in a carb coma from the potatoes, bread etc. That's the only explanation I have for the miracle that let me snap this photo. He usually complains.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Work In Progress

The boys and I painted their bedroom a few weeks ago. Why oh why didn't I take "before" pictures? I don't know. But I didn't. Try to picture the bunk bed, huge mess, tan walls, navy and red bedspreads, pictures of vintage cars in primary colors that my mom bought them when they were 3 and 4.

The motivation for the cleaning/painting was that Tyler really wanted to grafitti his walls.
So I let him do it. He also created the two pictures above the beds. Ry's is his name in Chinese. Tyler's is just random grafitti. He also did the light switch and an "exit" sign above the door. I didn't take a picture of that...but I'm sure there will be a future post with more pics since he doesn't seem to have the grafitti out of his system yet and there will undoubtedly be more to see later....
This is the first time in 15 years that they've had the bunk beds split up...they think it makes the room seem bigger. Hmmm. I don't know about that. But they're happy. I have some more projects such as doctoring up the blah black curtain and doing something to the white lampshade. Ryan needs a shelf for all of his awards. But I just lost interest/steam for the project.
And, if you're wondering: NO my son has not graced any public places with his art. He does shoes, folders, the sidewalk in front of our house, and now his bedroom walls. We've channeled his talent into legally acceptable places:)

Monday, March 2, 2009

Sorry Jill, I had to post it

I've been listening to this lovely Sarah Mclachlan compilation CD in the car whilst running errands, and going back and forth to Renaissance Academy. I sometimes feel like I'm spending half of my life driving to that school. And home again. And back to the school. It's always something. This week it's the Book Fair. But I digress...
Remember the song that Jessie, the cowgirl doll from Toy Story 2 sings? It's on this CD. The one that I'm listening to in the car whilst going back and forth to Renaissance a million times a day?
This particular song came on last Friday while Grace and I were coming home. I happened to glance in the rear-view mirror, only to see my baby's face drenched with tears. She's quietly sobbing.
"Grace! Are you hurt? What happened?"
"I miss Jillian! (sob)"
WHAT!!??? We're just driving home....what in the heck....
Grace says, "Change the song!"
Oh. Then I notice the words.

When somebody loved me, everything was beautiful
Every hour we spent together, lives within my heart
And when she was sad, I was there to dry her tears
And when she was happy, so was I, when she loved me.

Through the summer and the fall, we had each other, that was all
Just she and I together, like it was meant to be
And when she was lonely, I was there to comfort her
And I knew that she loved me.

So the years went by, I stayed the same
And she began to drift away, I was left alone
Still I waited for the day, when she'd say "I will always love you."

Lonely and forgotten, never thought she'd look my way,
She smiled at me and held me, just like she used to do,
Like she loved me, when she loved me

When somebody loved me, everything was beautiful,
Every hour we spent together, lives within my heart
When she loved me.

My heart just broke into a million tiny note shaped pieces. We came home and called Jill on the phone.
My baby is growing up though, isn't she? Listening to lyrics in a song and applying them to her life.
I had the same CD on today on the way home from school. The song came on again. I was sort of experimenting to see if it would have the same effect...and yep. Waterworks again. I quickly clicked over a couple of tracks to an African beat song, and she instantly perked up and laughed.
This is why it's so important to keep only good music in our homes (and cars!) Music can change everything in the blink of an eye.