Monday, February 3, 2014

Tree 1; Tahoe 0

Yesterday started like any other Sunday. We got up, got dressed and headed for church. The only difference from other Sundays was our Super Bowl party plans later in the evening.  The weather forecast showed 2-4 inches of snow beginning in the afternoon. So, we were a little surprised to walk out the door to tiny little flurries falling but just figured it was a passing blip of moisture. We got in the Tahoe and headed to church on the small chance we would need the 4x4. Our church is about 30 miles from home. By the time we got there, snow was falling and blanketing he earth. Obviously services were canceled as soon as we arrived so we made small talk with our friends and turned to head home. Roads that were barely wet just minutes before were completely covered in a very wet, slick snow. Even though our church is at the top of a very steep hill, I wasn't worried. My husband is a very good driver in the snow and we had the four wheel drive turned on. 

As we started down the hill at little more than a crawl, we began to slide. Hubs tapped the brakes and the anti lock brakes immediately locked up. He let completely off the brakes and just tried to maintain some semblance of control as we slid down the treacherous luge.  With vehicles stopped at the intersection below and people standing on the edge of the road, we had no choice but to go straight. Our options were to hit the clearing that held a deep gulley, hit the large tree or try and make the corner and risk rolling.  Hubs chose the tree. It turned out to be the best choice as the gulley would have sent us into an end over end flip. 

He tried to hit the tree dead center so the Tahoe wouldn't whip around to the left or right and cause us to spin into other vehicles or pedestrians.  He succeeded. The front of the truck was wrapped around that tree in a bear hug.  It took a split second and we realized we had avoided serious injury. Both airbags deployed and my chest felt like I had been hit with a ton of bricks. I immediately shook it off of me and jumped out of the vehicle to get to my precious babies in the back seat. My daughter was in a complete panic but unhurt and my son was scary calm but had blood running from his mouth.  Thankfully our firefighter friend was right behind us with his family as was another family from church. Both families jumped to our rescue and got the boy an ice pack and some napkins. We climbed into the vehicle with the firefighter and he took us to the fire house leaving hubs to wait for the cops and wrecker. 

A lot goes through you mind when you know that within seconds you will be going head to head with a large oak tree. All I could think about in the warm safety of the fire house was how thankful I am that God had his hand of protection on us. None of us were seriously injured even though I had the boy checked for a broken jaw and concussion after he started trying to go to sleep and vomitting. Turns out, coming off an adrenaline high will do that to you.  

As time goes on, more bruises and new soreness continue to crop up but we walked away from this:

The boy is eating better today even though his jaw is still a little swollen. Here he is yesterday getting checked at the hospital:
Needless to say, we missed the Super Bowl party an watched from our couch! 

Friday, January 17, 2014

Con Artist

First, I must tell you that boy child has been home from school two days now with strep throat.  He has been miserable, but finally on the mend.  This morning, while getting ready for school, girl child professes that her belly hurts.  This comes on the heels of my announcement that for lunch, the cafeteria would be serving chili, cheese sticks, crackers, salad and fruit.  I'm not going to lie; normally, I would allow her to take her lunch on days where the lunch is less than stellar, but we have no food.  I haven't been grocery shopping so we are out of all the necessities including but not limited to bread, milk, peanut butter, lunch get the point.  We do, however, still have toilet paper, so all is good!  Since her ailment came after the chili conversation, I knew she was fibbing. 

On to school we went.  I did my two hours of Title 1 reading and just as I am about to get in my car and go home to relieve my mother of infirmary duty, I get a text from the school secretary notifying me that girl child had puked in the bathroom and is in the nurse's office.  Mom of the year award,  So, slough off to the nurse's office to fetch my poor child that I had deemed a liar just a few hours earlier, eat crow and apologize for not believing her. 


I mean, how could I have misjudged that sweet little face this morning so horribly?  Off to home we go.  I make her chicken noodle soup to treat her ailing tummy and tell her just to lay on the couch and get some rest.  All the while, I'm hoping and praying that I come out of this deal unscathed1  About an hour later, I realize she is keeping the soup down, hasn't complained one time about her stomach hurting and has her normal color.  As soon as I began questioning her, I know she has duped me, and her teacher, annndddd the nurse.  She tries to first tell me that she "thought" she threw up but that it might have just been a little mucus (gross, I know).  Ah huh, I see. 

My six year old is a con artist.  She had to REALLY want to stay home.  It took her three hours to convince someone she was sick enough to miss school. If that's not perseverance, I don't know what is! 

On to the punishment.  She is grounded from all electronic devices for a week.  She had to fold the towels and put them away and switch the loads of laundry.  Additionally, she had to clean her room and clean the sink in the bathroom.  I also made her write her teacher a letter admitting that she lied, that she knew she was wrong and it wouldn't happen again.  Probably the worst punishment of all though is she is not allowed to eat her candy that her Aunt gave her yesterday!

Forget terrible two's, we are at the six and full of tricks.  Who knows what the teen years will bring!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Way Back When

Hey, remember when people actually wrote letters to one another?  I do, and I miss those days.  When I was young, my grandparents lived half a country away and I wrote them a letter probably once a week. There was a lot to talk, er write about as a 6 year old.  I'm sure my grandparents were on the edge of their floral covered couch just waiting for the mailman to deliver my weekly letter filled with important information such as what mom cooked for dinner that week, what my math assignment at school was, how the dog was doing, whether or not it had rained that week, that we had yet another cat dumped on us and what happened on the latest Simpson's episode!

Unless you count an occasional email or a Facebook wall post, I haven't written a letter in years!  I did send out Christmas cards this year but they were all addressed the same way, with the same font on the same family photo.  There was nothing personal about them.  We got several cards in return, but my favorite of all is the real life, handwritten letter from my grandmother.

It even had a few mistakes on it! Apparently she didn't use spell check.  Maybe I'm a sap, but the mistakes made it more special.  It really made me want to pick up a pencil, unplug my smartphone and take a few minutes out of my day to make someone else's.  

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Bladder Issues

Friday, I came home from school with major bladder leakage.  I mean the kind that is so bad it prevents regular flow.  Water flow that is. Oh, you thought...

No, I'm referring to our well. Those of us that live in rural America, otherwise known as the sticks, have well water which is free until something goes wrong.  Then, it becomes incredibly expensive.  I didn't immediately know about said bladder issues right away. It went something like this...

Girl child flushed the toilet and a loud rumble ensued, actually making the floor tremble.  It had poured all day and weird things happen when there is a lot if rain and you're on a well. So, I scratched my head, shrugged and did the only logical thing; I flushed the commode again. This time there was no noise but the water turned a dirty, murky color. Again, I chauked it up to the onslaught of precipitation that has dumped on us (haha dumped, flushing of toilet..bad joke I know). 

Fast forward to time to cook dinner. I turned on the kitchen faucet and it began  to spit and sputter like there was air in the line.  Then, it completely stopped. It was in that very moment that it occurred to me that something was seriously wrong.  How it was just now occurring to me, no one will ever know. Hubs began the regular checklist of checking the breaker box, checking other faucets, etc and then headed to the well house to learn of the pressure tank's demise. 

Hellllooooo weekend! Thankfully the well guys were able to come yesterday and fix it. However, when we turned on the faucets, dirt and sediment in the pipes blew through them all, clogging the kitchen and bathroom sink and the toilet! Fan-freaking-TASTIC!  Poor hubs has spent all day replacing faucets, taking faucets apart and cleaning them and replacing that contraption inside the throne tank.

I am very happy to announce that all faucets and toilet are fully functional!!  I haven't tried the dishwasher yet; I'm too scared of he fallout that could occur! 

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Moons: Phase One

With Valentines day on the horizon, I thought it appropriate to share my love story. I'm so blessed to have gotten the whole marriage thing right the first time. I met my other half in high school, though we aren't exactly high school sweethearts. 

I remember when I first started to take notice of him. I was a 9th grader and he was a junior. Obviously, he was too cool to date someone 2 years younger than he was but that didn't stop him from the occasional flirt that would twist my stomach up in knots and make my heart beat all kinds of crazy. He was the guy all the girls wanted to date. He dressed sharp and was part of the starting lineup for the basketball team. He wasn't your stereotypical arrogant athlete though. He was polite and respectful but had decided early on that high school was for fun, not serious girlfriends which in hindsight was probably a good decision.

So, I tucked tail and found someone else to date.  Then, wouldn't you know it, Mr. Heartstopper asked me to meet him at the pool hall to watch an Arkansas Razorback game with him. I can't remember how they looked back then, but their record had to be better than this past season. Anyway, I immediately forgot about ole what's his name I had been dating and jumped at the chance. There was only one problem; mom wouldn't let me out of the house. She taught me a very important lesson that night: you don't go out with other boys when you already have a boyfriend.  Oh yeah, there was that. 

Fast forward to my tenth grade year; his senior year.  The attraction was still there but he held fast to his rule. He would sneak up behind me in the hall and put his arm around me risking being caught by the PDA police. In shop class, he would suddenly have chapped lips and need to use my pear flavored lip gloss. During 7th hour I would always have to use the bathroom, which was up in the gym, so I could watch a few minutes of his basketball practice. It was one of those times he pulled me behind the ball court and stole a quick kiss.  My heart nearly stopped! It didn't matter that he was dripping with sweat.  

Then, there were the ball games we traveled to regularly on the same bus.  I was a cheerleader and our school was small so the cheer team rode the same bus as the ball team.  I would get all giddy every time he stepped up to the free throw line and shot a quick glance at me when I knew he should have had his head 100% in the game.  On the way home, the girls on one side and boys on the other side of the bus rule never held up. So, he normally sat down right beside me.  He would always steal a few kisses under the protection of the pitch black night which shielded us from coach's eyes.  Baseball season was no different. He was a player, I was a diamond girl (the person who kept the stats). I remember that K is a strikeout and E is an error, but most if all I remember the times he would take me home after the games. We would always detour down by the lake first for a quick make out.  When our team made state and we got to go on an overnight trip, I was busted in the guys dorm watching a movie with my future husband. Now, I know what you're thinking, but there were 6-8 people in that room so we were really only watching a movie!!  Keep your head out of the gutter; I'm still just a 10th grader! 

Then, the unthinkable happened! He asked me out on a date. Of course I said yes, then because of ridiculous teen drama, called and canceled. This happened not once, but twice. My chance was gone. 

Graduation came and he left for college. It was incredibly hard at first even though we had never dated because he was different.  When I was around him, I felt connected to him.  Life went on though and I still had two years of high school.

To be continued...

Friday, January 10, 2014

Bloggers Block

The new year is supposed to equal new beginnings and here I am totally behind in my blogging and reading up on the blogs I follow!  So much for a great fresh start.  Oh well, at least I didn't make resolutions this year.  Otherwise, I would be wallowing in the epic failure of not keeping them.  To top things off, I have suffered from a severe case of writers block.  You would think with 10 snow days, sub zero temps, more snow and ice, my new job at the school and the decision to move forward with my own photography business that I would have something to write about.  But no, all I can think about is the copious amounts of coffee I have drank and the obscene number of peanut butter cookies I have eaten due to boredom!  So, I present to you...drumroll and complete randomness until my muse comes back!

First, the school hired me as a Title I reading tutor which is exciting because I will finally have some symbolism of a real schedule.  I will still substitute teach when needed, but at least I will get to know some of these kids and hopefully get to really make a difference in their education. This actually reminds me of a couple adventures in subbing that I have yet to share:

1. I got flipped off and called the "b" word behind my back.
2. I had a first grader get upset because another little girl picked on her for her love of Minnie Mouse so she fled the classroom crying.  It was a moment of sheer panic because I didn't know where she went.  I should have known she would find solace in the girls bathroom.
3. I had yet another first grader melt down and refuse to go to lunch.  I had to peel her off the floor and practically carry her to the cafeteria.
4  I failed at being the harsh, rigid disciplinarian required to sub in the ISS room and they haven't asked me to do it again.
5. I had a little boy in the 4th grade pass gas only to tell me to smell the air because his, well you know, smells like an elephant's butt.
6. I have had several dirty looks from teenagers when asking them to put their cell phones away.
7. I almost started a riot in the 5th grade when I collected a bouncy ball, a Kindle and a wristwatch.  Apparently, I was being totally unfair!

Despite the above list, I have really enjoyed subbing.  The hugs I get from the kids when they see me in the hallway makes it well worth it.

2.  I have taken the plunge and started my own photography business. It's always been a hobby of mine.  I have a baby brother nine years my junior and I used to dress him up and take photos of him with my Minnie Mouse 35mm camera.  I would use my beanbag with a blanket thrown over it as a posing station.  He was a pretty good sport.  Anyway, rather than torture you any longer, I will leave you with some of my latest work.  Enjoy..

Cake smash session

My best friend's gorgeous family.

My little farm girl.

My half moons. 

Four Moons.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014: Day One

Well the first day of 2014 has come and gone.  Today started out with a terrible hangover headache.  That prescription cough syrup I shot right before bed really knocked me flat!  Last night was a wild night filled with pocket change poker, Cranium, multiple bottles of water and a persistent cough.  Hence the cough syrup!  It was nothing a little coffee couldn't fix though.

This morning started my usual, "I'm going to begin a healthier lifestyle" goal so breakfast was whole grain oatmeal laced with flaxseed.  I followed it up with turkey on wheat for lunch...and leftover chips and dip annnndddd not one chocolate chip cookie, but two.  Well, there's always tomorrow!

So today, we did what most people do on New Years. We hauled a truckload of wood.  It wasn't all work though.  We did build a fire pit down by the creek in anticipation for the first weekend warm enough to pitch a tent and camp.  Wait, on second thought, it was all work!  This apprentice driver took us and our load of wood home:

We start em out young here on the farm. Me and the boy were worried about our safety:

Excuse the leftover makeup from aforementioned NYE party that I didn't wash off!  Obviously, I lived to tell about girl child's driving practice as here I am sharing it with you all!!

Seriously though, 2013 was a great year. Our business grew more than it ever has, I quit my job to spend more time with the kids, we are healthy and blessed beyond anything we could ever deserve.  Hope you all have a wonderful 2014!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!