Sunday, October 31, 2010 tricks

(My little punks are in the middle)
The kids had their pictures taken outdoors at the Inniswood Metro Garden on Thursday. A fun side note is that Aron's company designed one of the gardens (the Sisters Garden) where we took some of the pictures. (My goofballs are on the right)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Mr Zesty

A woman who owns a small store in my area told me today that she enjoys seeing Luke around town and come into her store because of his zest for life.

I have no idea what she's talking about...

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Looks like we made it: Conditioner edition

I'm not perfect. (Girl....You know it's true so quit acting so shocked).
I have a bad habit. One that I've been trying to shake for years. No, I'm not talking about drugs...alcohol...ebay...soda...the Kardashians...clothes...none of that. I'm talking about beauty products. It started out innocently enough. I can even tell you about the day it started. My grandparents had decided to invest in a little company called The Limited. They were sent a few samples of lotion from a subsidiary company called Bath and Body Works . My grandma thought I would like the samples so she gave me a couple. The scent was Country Apple. I was sitting in my high school band room and pulled out a sample to try after I put away my flute. I used a small amount on my hands, gave some to my friend, and put the rest away for later. The rest was, as they say, history.
Since that day, I've been collecting many bottles of virtually every product known to man: shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, lotions (the lotions!), bubble baths, etc, sweet sweet smelling etc. I even worked at a BBW while I was in college. A good analogy would be that it was like an alcoholic working at a liquor store. Ah...the days!
This past January, I resolved to make myself kick the habit. My New Year's Resolution was to not buy any more products (not just from BBW but from anywhere) until all of my 1/2 full or just a smidge left or not the correct season for that scent or I just got tired of that scent bottles of product were completely used.
Since January 1, 2010, I've been trying to use up every last bath product I own (Aron has been exempt from this policy. Quite frankly, he uses 2 products: shampoo and soap. Oh and that stuff he uses on his hair to make it poke up like that.). A couple months ago I closed the door on the bubble bath chapter of the resolution (thanks in part to the kids). A couple weeks ago I put an end to the shampoo saga. Today, I finished up my conditioner supply. Through the steam, you can see the upside down bottle of mango mandarin conditioner just waiting to have its last drops put on my hair.
We'll just have to wait and see how it goes for the remainder of the products I'm going to use up (hair styling products, body cleansers, facial scrubs, deodorants, lotions). It may be awhile.
Just sayin.
Sorry it's so steamy in the pic but I had already started the shower when I decided to take a pic.
Wait! Something's missing. Oh what ever will I do?
Fill that empty spot with a NEW conditioner that I JUST BOUGHT at the store? Why, yes. Yes, I believe I will do just that.

Look at him...all snuggled into his new home. So cute. Seems like I need to buy him a buddy for the cupboard...just in case I run out...just one's not a big deal...just one...then I'll stop...I'llllllll.....stooooooooooooooop (tomorrow).

**Full disclosure: A few months ago, I gave several bottles of lotion to my sister-in-law (some might even call it 7 or 8 bottles) that were partially used. I allowed myself to do this not because I wanted to lessen my supply but because I had recently tried all of them and found that they felt weird when they dried on my skin. I have three more bottles in my drawer at work if any of my coworkers want one assuming that my skin is just weird and sensitive to that particular brand.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Live feed portion of the blog

A little while ago, I added a thing called "feedjit" to the blog. It shows where the blog visitors come from. However, it completely does not have my city correct. I show up as Harrod, Oh. Um, I had to look up where that was on a map because it is no where near where I am. When I'm at work and look at it, it either says I'm in Birmingham, AL or Chicago, IL. I would assume this is because we have gigantic servers in both of those regions and the live feed recognizes where I'm being routed from.

Is it accurate for everyone else? I'm just curious.

(As a side note, I don't care who views the blog. They can be familiar or unfamiliar people to us. I just find it interesting to see. I think I have a fairly regular viewer from Moscow which is pretty cool as well as quite a few from California.)

VOTE NOW (cause it makes me happy)

Can I just lock her in a tower and call it a day?

Ella is getting to the age that she's being invited to more and more birthday parties (read into that "breaking Mommy's wallet" but whatever) and some just-for-fun parties (yay for no gift needed). She enjoys them a lot and I think it's great that she's getting more interactive with friends and establishing bonds with other children blah, blah, blah.


She's also been getting quite a few invites for sleepovers and spending the night with friends. I gotta say that I'm just not ready for that. Don't get me wrong, I think it'll be oodles of fun when she gets a little older. I just think she's a little bit too young for it still. The parents of the children that invite her over seem nice. I know most of them superficially through school, sports, ballet, or whatever other activity she knows them through. The problem is just that--I only know these people superficially. I know them well enough to know that they don't scream at their kids on the softball field or that they dress their child nicely to go to ballet practice or that we can wave to one another from our cars as we drive out of the parking lot.

I appreciate the sentiment. I'm glad that they think enough of Ella to want their kid to hang around them more. She's a pretty awesome kid even if I do say so myself.

What do you all think? Is it time? If not, when is the right time? How well do you need to know someone before it's considered well enough.

Protecting this's my job. That's what I get the big bucks for.
P.S. Don't worry, Dawn. I'll be sticking to my guns and saying no for quite a while.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Don't think I'll be getting Mother of the Year for this one...episode 9

On Monday, we had absolutely no food in our house other than an odd assortment of things that would not equal a lunch for school-bound Ella (although, she probably wouldn't have been the only kid there with 2 dried up baby carrots, a half-eaten granola bar, and 3 semi-crushed fritos) I told her that she would just have to buy that day because I really needed to go to the store. I went to my purse where all I could find was a bunch of pennies and a five dollar bill.
Hmmm...didn't really want to send a 5 in for the lunch that costs $2.25 because then I'll have to remember how much extra she has for the next time she buys and that's just too hard for my feeble mind. Then I remembered that the other night I saw Ella sorting her "bank" which consists of the spare change that she finds around here. Score! I found her box with the money so I grabbed out the crumpled, wadded up dollar bill she had in there and 5 quarters. I tossed the stash in her backpack and walked her to school.
After school, I asked her how the day had went. She said it was fine. I asked how her lunch was. She said it was good but that she couldn't pay for her lunch. I asked what she meant by "couldn't pay for lunch." She said that she handed the cashier the dollar and change but that she handed the dollar back to her and told her that she couldn't take it.
Couldn't take the dollar? Why?
Ella said it was only worth 50 cents. To which I said "What? Only worth 50 cents---what do you mean? It's a dollar. A dollar's a dollar." Ella then went on to explain that it was only worth 50 cents because she and Luke both found the dollar at the same time and both wanted it. They solved this little dilemma by ripping it in half so each could have 50 cents. The same dollar I grabbed without really looking at before handing to Ella to pay for her lunch.
No food in the house for lunch AND I'm trying to rip off the school with my ripped-in-half dollar that I stole out of my kids piggy bank. Sigh.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Happy 1000st post!

Fitting that it is also Vintage Sunday so here you go...the 2001 version of Annie and Aron

Saturday, October 09, 2010

You went to a WHAT festival?

Ella had an early soccer game today so we decided to take advantage of this. After she was done (yes, they won), we packed up and drove a couple hours to Waynesville, Ohio for their Sauerkraut Festival.
That's right. Let me break it down for y'all.
It's a FESTIVAL of SAUERKRAUT. The German portion of me stands up loud and proud when you start talking about my blessed sauerkraut. We had no less than the following: sauerkraut balls, cabbage rolls, a "German Sundae,*" and sauerkraut pie. We passed on the sauerkraut bread and sauerkraut brownies. You could also buy the stuff in bulk from some of the vendors. One of the major sponsors was a Fremont Ohio based company called Snow Floss.
Let me just say that this was one of the best festivals I've ever been to and that's not just because I happen to enjoy sauerkraut. It's because everyone was soooo into it! You could tell that there was some serious time spent on keeping it true to the title, Sauerkraut Festival, as well as having a family-type atmosphere. All the crafts were handmade and were quality products. I visited my new buddy, Candle Cathy, of the wonderful Starwick Candles company who was one of the lucky vendors chosen for the event. She sells hand-poured 100% soybean wax candles for her Dayton, Ohio based company (Psst! Buy local! Go Cathy!).
I also happened upon another great vendor called Goat Milk Stuff. I bought some AWESOME bath fizzy powder from them. I bought some of the Cold Relief variety because it smelled like Vick's vapo-rub (you know, that stuff your Mom used to make you put when you were little and you had a cold). I've already used it and my skin is super soft. I'm seeing future purchases from their website.
My other purchase was a screen-print tee from a vendor. She was kind of snotty toward the kids so I don't think I'll be promoting her business but bought the shirt none-the-less. I'm passive-aggressive like that I guess.
So here you go...some pics of the fun...
Yup, we went to a sauerkraut festival. I can just feel the German portion of me swelling with pride.
"Get away from my food, Ella!"
"He's not sharing!"
Have a slice of sauerkraut pie? Don't mind if I do.
Thousands of people lined the streets of this tiny little town.
Why, yes, yes these are sauerkraut balls.
*A German Sundae is a pile of mashed potatoes topped with pulled pork and covered with sauerkraut. Yup, it was super tasty.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Mr Big (Ten)

This is the story of a little boy named Myles who is a true BuckNut (am I allowed to say that on the blog??). He got to go to his first OSU football game. He made it through security, though, truth be told I'm not sure how. See below for Exhibit A.

An hour from home, we made it to the promised land and a little place known simply as "The Shoe." He got to attend a free concert (aka the Skull Session)...
hang out with his best bud, Aunt Annie...
and rock the stadium KISS style...
Oh yeah, and he had to hang out with his Dad, too. (Poor kid)
This Shoe fit so well that he felt free to express himself as he pleased...
He watched a couple marching bands perform and was even treated to a cartoon-themed halftime show...
and got a behind the scenes tour after the game. Although, long time blog readers know that the Mystery Machine is nothing new to him.

After all the excitement, there was a little "crash landing" at the end.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Vintage Sunday (again on a Monday)

This pic is circa 2004 when Aron and I went to Caroline's in NYC for our 5th wedding anniversary. Helloooooo Tracy Morgan.

Bleedin love

Did you know that one blood donation can help save up to three lives?

Only 5% of eligible Americans give blood. Less than 30% of people who give blood once will ever give blood again. Every 2 seconds in America someone needs blood. Donated blood only lasts 42 days. There is a 97% chance that someone you know will need a blood transfusion.

I donate blood semi-regularly. I don't enjoy it. Never have. Never will. Had a bad experience donating blood? Yup, me too. Pass out after giving? Yup, me too. Hate needles? Low iron? Get an ugly bruise on your arm after donating? Yup, yup, yuppity yup. No time to go? Yup.

I'd love it if everyone who reads this post donates once. If you decide to donate, I'd love to hear about it.

You might help a hemophiliac. You might help a premature baby. You might help someone with cancer. Someone with sickle cell. Someone with anemia. Someone in a car accident. Do it because you never know who is going to need that donation. It may just be you.

What's holding you back? Vote now.

This post was brought to you by the letters G, R, A, M, M, I, and E and the number 10

Once again this year, Grammie (and I guess Poppy, too) sponsored a day of riding rides at the fair. The kids rode one day with their buddy, Reagan, and Chase for 6 solid hours pausing only to cry out for more lemon shake ups. They rode another day for quite a few additional hours with Myles.
This is clearly a torture device for small children. I put Luke in thick soled sneakers for his day on the rides at the fair. A little insurance, if you will, for the little guy. There was much straining to qualify for some rides on Luke's part to get to the promised land of "green=yes."
Luke is to the left of the giant Z, Ella's behind him, and Myles is behind her.
The happy trio
Myles is on the far left, Ella to the right of him, and Luke to the right of her.
Luke looks like he's gonna chuck, but Myles is lovin' it! Such big kids!
Ella and Luke also had some time riding with their friend, Reagan (she's in the middle)
They would always ride together even if the rest of the ride was completely empty. So cute.
Even Chase got in on the action.
This was Ella and Luke's first roller coaster.
If this is a police car, I guess that means it took three officers in the front to subdue one Ella (heathen)
Ella and Reagan