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Friday, December 21, 2018

My little Tiger Cub is all grown up now!

This is a picture of Peter wearing his Tiger Cub uniform.  He was in first grade.  It was September of 2009 and he was ready for his first meeting as a Cub Scout.

Last night, Peter had his Eagle Scout Board of Review.  He went into a room with three adults from the Hickory Council and was questioned for almost an hour about his project, his time in scouts, his views, his leadership, his activities, his morals, etc. 


All of the official paperwork things have to be done on the councils end but hopefully on Boy Scout Sunday in February he will be awarded his Eagle Scout rank.

It has been a long NINE years from start to finish. In between all the fun activities and the meetings and the trips there was a fair amount of complaining (because y'all getting to Eagle definitely requires work) but he did it!

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Pictureless post with lots of news!

I'm alive!  I'm pretty sure you were worried that I wasn't but here I am.

I'm not going to lie. Last week's snow really threw me off.  My kids were out of school three days and went in late on two days.  (All the public school systems were out all week.)  Dan said he thought we got closer to 12 inches here.  My original estimation was around 8.

3 inches keeps the schools closed for three days so you can imagine the havoc this much snow caused.  And it was so slow to melt.  But finally, on Sunday it had all melted and the sun was out and this week the temps have been in the upper 50s and I am so happy about that!

But all of this weather has me behind but I am slowly starting to dig out of that as well.  We managed to get the Christmas cards sent and I got some packages to the post office and I think I have purchased almost everything I need to purchase.  I still have a few odds and ends but I will get that done.

Today my kids only have a half day and then their Christmas break starts.  So as soon as I post this, I am going to start wrapping all the things before I have to run back to the post office and to pick up the kids!

But that's not really why I was popping on here, I wanted to document that Peter got his driver's license yesterday!  Y'all, we were both nervous but the road test around here is fairly quick and simple.  I think the most complicated thing he had to do was a three point turn and he can do those fairly well.

I did not get a picture of him with his license at the DMV because we were rushing out of there to get him back to school because he had a chemistry test.  Luckily he made it just in time.  Apparently the teacher gave him a hard time about missing it the day before when he told her he might be late.  So, crisis averted.


We got Peter a truck this weekend.  It's a basic Toyota Tacoma.  We paid a little more than I was hoping but it's low in miles.  It was a work truck for a pest control company so it definitely been used and it's got no bells or whistles but the boy seems happy with it.  I'm just hoping and praying that it's dependable!  And no, I didn't get a picture of him in front of his truck either.  He is a teen aged boy after all, and pictures and teen boys don't really seem to mix.

And now, the wrapping begins and all of the praying because having a teen ager driving really brings you closer to Jesus! 

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Snow Event.

Last Monday, I noticed some weather reports stating that all 4 of the models they use to predict the weather were forecasting a potentially large snow event for our area over the weekend.  The forecasters were very quiet about it all and were being extremely cautious and were stating that they would not predict totals until 60 hours out from the event.

As the week progressed, it became more and more apparent that we were going to actually get snow and get a lot of it.  The snow was supposed to start early on Sunday (around midnight or so) and continue through the day. 60 hours out they were predicitng that depending on where you were, the snow would be between 6 to 12 inches!

Since I normally do my grocery shopping on Monday morning I knew I better do it on Friday in case I wouldn't be able to get to the store on Monday or Tuesday.

I even gassed up the car, took the trash to the dump, and cleaned the house - sort of.  And Dan, who had been in Singapore all last week made it home late Friday night.  Apparently he was on the plane in Singapore and it was about to take off when they made everyone deplane.  YIKES!  Wonder what kind of issue they found at the very last minute??  He safely made it home though on another flight and was only 6 hours later than expected.  His bag however, did not make it home until Monday afternoon.

Saturday was busy - we went to Mass at 9:00 am and then dropped Sarah off at school for a swim meet in Huntersville.  I had found the perfect truck for Peter and we had an appointment to look at it but they called and said, "Whoops!  Not sure what happened but that car sold last month."  I'm just glad they called before we drove to Statesville.  We stopped at another place that only sells used cars to see if they had anything but was told it was going to be hard to find what we were looking for but they took our information and will call us if they come across anything.  (Not holding my breath...)

On Saturday evening, Peter had to attend a classical guitar concert at Wake Forest University so Dan dropped him off for that and I picked Sarah up from her swim meet.  The three of us ate chili and then it was time to go back and pick Peter up from the concert.  And then we settled in for the snow event.

It snowed all night and by Sunday morning we had at least 5 inches at our house (it may have been more at that point but who knows and it was still coming down).  There was so much snow in the area that they even cancelled Mass.  (Our rectory is several miles from the church and since all the snow happened over night and since there are minimal snow plows here no roads were cleared.)

So Sunday we slept in, ate lunch at my parent's house, watched the Panther's lose, heard about the Patriot's loss, and did the Christmas cards and I wrapped a few gifts.

My husband's company was even closed on Monday so we slept in again.  We live on a very busy road that connects two major roads so our road was scrapped by Monday morning.  My husband had a huge case of cabin fever so we did we always do on a snow day. Piled in the SUV with my brother and got wings at Christo's. 

And now it's Tuesday and Dan is back to work but the kids are out of school again.  Many of the local public school systems have already cancelled for tomorrow as well. It will be interesting to see if their school is cancelled tomorrow or just on a delay.

The official reports are that our town got 8 inches but many of the surrounding areas got 10 or even up to 12 inches!  That is a lot of snow for here and there will be many small roads that don't get plowed and have to wait for melting to occur.  The snow was beautiful to see on Sunday morning but because we don't get big snows very often, it just messes everything up.

Sarah and her Girl Scout troop were supposed to go to Charlotte to sort boxes for Operation Christmas Child on Monday afternoon  but that got cancelled.  My care group was supposed to go to Boone on Wednesday to sort the gifts at that facility but now we aren't going to be able to go either.  Sarah was supposed to have a swim meet tonight but that got cancelled too.

I'm trying to use my time at home wisely though - getting gifts sorted and wrapped and trying to determine what I still need to get.  I also need to work on my menu for our little Christmas Eve party.  And I'm trying to encourage my kids to work on things that they need to be working on for school.  You can imagine how well that's going over.  :) 

Here's a shot from the front door on Sunday morning when I got up.  It's pretty but now I'm ready for it all to melt!

Sarah and I made a big batch of chocolate chip cookies on Sunday.  Sunday is my diet cheat day and I definitely had some of these. Now I'm practicing my willpower but now eating the rest of them!

I also had a big piece of this delicious coconut cream pie I made for Sunday dessert.  Sunday cheat days are the best!  :)

This was my view while doing the Christmas cards on Sunday afternoon.  I had a cup of peppermint coffee, the snow was falling outside, I had the fire going and football was on.

Wally started relaxing in the sink this weekend.  He did this at least twice when I was using the bathroom.  Poor thing is going stir crazy.  He wants to go outside so bad but he can't deal with the snow. 
And when he's not curled up in sink, you can usually find him curled up under the tree!

Happy Tuesday everyone.  And I'll just be over here trying not to panic that it will be Christmas Day in TWO WEEKS!

Monday, December 3, 2018

Everything and then some. And a whole lot of pictures.

It's Monday and we've been busy.

Sarah had her second swim meet on Thursday evening and she did great!  The team we were swimming this time was really good.  Well, correction - their women's team was good but their men's team was terrible so we split the meet. 

Sarah swam in two relays  and also in the 100 backstroke again but instead of the 50 free she swam a 100 butterfly.  She was so nervous about this.  She's never done a 100 butterfly in a meet before but she finished and she didn't DQ and she came in third!  (Which isn't as impressive as it sounds because there were only three girls swimming that event.)  But she survived and her time was respectable. And even though she swam that before her backstroke, she still managed to have roughly the same backstroke time as last week. Her goal now is cutting time off her backstroke.

Here's my girl doing the butterfly:

On Saturday morning we got up and headed to Laurel Springs to get a Christmas tree.  It was a cloudy morning and by the time we got up the mountain, it was rainy and extremely  foggy.  Peter did a great job driving in the fog and the rain:

Zero visibility!

It proceeded to rain  on us the entire time we were picking out our tree so we were quick this year.  Typically the kids disagree over which tree to get but they were wet and cold and ready to get back into the car.

We got home and got the tree up and then it was time to go to Mass.  After Mass we went out to eat and came home and started decorating the tree.

And we went to be a little early for a Saturday night because Dan was out the door and on his way to Singapore at 3:00 AM on Sunday morning.  But not before he got my coffee ready to go with a little love note.  This is what greeted me when I rolled out of bed at 8:00 AM:

 I definitely married up.

The kids and I had lunch at my parent's house.  Peter stayed there to watch the Panther's game with my dad and my brother and Sarah went with my mom to another painting class.  Look at their 

And look how pretty it looks on my shelf:

And while they were all doing their own thing, I stayed home and finished decorating the tree and putting out the rest of the Christmas decorations and then, at 6:30, Sarah had two friends from school come over so they could work on a religion project.  I ordered some pizza and they got to work.  They finished the first part and it sounds like they will be meeting at another house next Sunday to finish things up.

And just like that, it's Monday.  Dan left the house at 3:00 AM on Sunday morning and literally just called at 11:45 PM today (Monday)  to tell me he was finally at his hotel in Singapore.  Yikes!  That's a lot of travel time!

Tonight is the first home basketball game of the season and Peter wants to go.  So it looks like after I get Sarah home from swim practice I will be heading back to school to watch a basketball game!  Thankfully the price of gas is going down.  :) 

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Just more driving and more complaing. Oh, and with a side of medicine head!

Before I update you on the boring events of my life as a stay-at-home mom, I thought I would share a picture of this ridiculously large cat:

Baby's got back.  Or perhaps she's all about that bass, bout that bass, no treble....

Anyway, Tuesday night I went to bed with a little bit of a stuffed up nose.  Yesterday I woke up with a full on head cold.  But I took some medicine, suffered from medicine head all day and went about with my life.

I went to Target, Home Goods,World Market, and Hobby Lobby (that could only sound more first world if I had also gotten Starbucks but I didn't only because thanks to my head cold, it took me THREE cups of coffee to get out of the house yesterday) and managed to get a few (not very many though for the amount of time I was gone) Christmas gifts marked off my list. 

And I say "list" as if I have an actual list.  There's a theoretical  list floating around in my head and if I ever actually wrote it down, I might be a little more productive on my shopping trips.  And this list might also be more beneficial if it contained actual gift ideas for the people on my list.  My current list consists only of names of people I need to get presents for and my current shopping method consists of hours on Amazon and hours spent roaming the aisles of actual brick and mortar stores and not many actual purchases.  

I came home from my errands, did a load of laundry, made our Christmas cards and Shutterfly, put some chili in the crock pot and complained to myself and to my husband and to my parents.

See, the night before, when I got home at 6:00 with Sarah from swim practice, Peter informed me that the 5th installment of his religion group's video project was due on Friday and his group was meeting on Wednesday night AT 6:30 IN HIGH POINT to work on it.

So that meant the dinner that I had planned for last night was not going to happen so I threw the chili ingredients in the crock pot and tried to get all of my grousing out of my system because let me tell you what I did not feel like doing yesterday evening was DRIVING TO HIGH POINT!  But I did it because what else are you going to do?

And I know, I know.  I'm going to miss these days of driving my teens around.  And really, I will, but I like to be home on the couch in my pajamas at 9:00 not just walking in the door from a trip to High Point.  I also don't like eating chili at 9:00 at night but my sweet husband waited for me so he didn't eat until 9:00 either. 

Look at us, eating at 9:00 like we're in Europe or something.  Oh, and just like the wild Europeans that we are, we ate in front of the TV. 


I had recorded some Dateline episodes to watch (also just like the wild Europeans that we are because don't all Europeans love a good American Dateline whodunit? They don't?) and as we were nearing the end of it, it became apparent that it was a two hour episode and I had only recorded 1 hour of it. 

Now we will never know who killed Eduardo although I have a pretty good idea that it was Paul.

And now you are all caught up with yesterday.  Today involves driving to Kernersville (30 minutes each way or 1 hour round trip for those of you who aren't good with your numbers) no less than THREE times.  That's three hours I will spend in the car today with my lovely teens for those of you who still aren't good with your numbers.

And I know.  I am going to miss this.  Because once I'm done driving them around, then what will I do?  I guess I'll get caught up on the Datelines on my DVR...

(Could I have possible used any more parentheses in this post?)

(I blame medicine head.)

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Everything since last time!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  I know I did.

Apparently, the weird short-yet-really -ong week last week meant that I haven't posted anything here in 8 days so there's lots to be updated.  Let's just pick up right where I left off...

On Monday morning I headed to the eye doctor where I ordered new glasses.  I have chosen some very bold frames.  I think they may take some getting used to but I hope they look good.  They are actually the first pair I picked out but then changed to a different pair I liked better.  But then the person that was fitting them told me they were way too wide for my face and would distort my vision.  So I went back to my original first choice and she and another staff member both agreed they looked good.  I hope they weren't blowing smoke up my....  So, fingers crossed!  

Last Monday, Sarah had her first high school swim meet.  I drove to Dan's work and picked him up and we headed to Mt. Airy.  We found the pool and finally found where to park and by the time we got inside, we had already missed Sarah's first event.  Boo.

Then, we missed her second event because I couldn't hear the PA system and wasn't sure which event was happening and all the kids look the same when they have on matching swimsuits and swim caps.  BUT, we did manage to pay enough attention that we got to see her swim in her last two events.

Sarah swam great!  I was so proud of her (she was nervous) and both the men's and women's team won!  She has another meet this Thursday.  Luckily it's at home so we won't have to drive as far to get there and hopefully I can actually see her swim all her events.  The high school meets are more fast paced than the summer league meets so you have to be on your toes!

One of the dads took a ton of pictures and here are a few he got of Sarah:

My girl got FIRST place in her 200 backstroke!

The kids were out of school on Wednesday.  I had two doctor's appointments and in between those, I got to drive Sarah to Greensboro for a Friendsgiving lunch with 10 of her friends from school.  While she was doing that I killed time at Costco (not a smart move the day before Thanksgiving) and Target.  When she got in the car to head back home she told me that they all drew names for a Secret Santa gift exchange and there would be a Christmas get together as well. 

I came home from all the appointments and chauffeuring and made sweet potato casserole and cheesecake for Thanksgiving.  And other than the fact that on Thanksgiving day I burned the marshmallows (well, actually set the marshmallows blazing - I wish I had video of all of us trying to put out the fire in the oven!)  they and the cheesecake were delicious.

My mom and dad went all out with turkey, twice baked potatoes, chicken dressing, smoked wings, and bean salad.  And Jennifer brought some delicious apps as well as lots of delicious desserts. 

It was a lovely day shared with family and friends and my only regret is that I didn't get a picture of all of us at my parent's house.  The only thing I managed was this over exposed family selfie before we went next door:

On Friday, the boys mowed the grass and did yard work for the final time this year and Sarah and I put up all the window wreaths and candles.  We are going to get our tree next Saturday but wanted to get the outside decorations up to have that out of the way.

And then on Saturday we went to look for a truck for Peter.  And once again we were disappointed.  On our way there, Peter asked if I had called ahead because even though this was a differnt dealership it was also an hour away and I responded, "No.  We called ahead last time and that didn't help so I figured why bother."

I really should have called ahead.  This sales guy was very helpful BUT the car that they had posted on their website with a sales price was not actually for sale.  Apparently it did not pass their inspection and instead of being put on their retail lot, it was going off to be sold at a wholesale car auction.  UGH!

The helpful sales manager did find another one in our price and miles range but it was just coming out of the service shop.  It had passed inspection but had not been detailed.  We told him we would still like to look at it.


Y'all!  This car was filthy!  I was so grossed out by the dirt and stains and general condition of the car that I just could not get past it.  Plus, there was a large hole in the truck bed (something had eaten right through the bed liner and the bed) and the paint was faded and worn.  "But it runs great!" said the salesman.

We didn't even bother to test drive it because I wasn't going to get inside that nasty thing.  It's going to take a lot of "detailing" to get that thing up to par.  I have a feeling that one might be heading to the wholesale auction as well.

Sunday was Mass and football and Sarah was in the Midway Christmas parade again.  Her Girl Scout troop used to have a float every year but stopped last year.  This year, their leader (who fundraises for Victory Junction) drove the  Victory Junction truck in the parade and the girls went along to throw out candy. (According to Sarah, Taylor Swift donated this truck  - you can see her name on the side.) Victory Junction is a camp for kids with serious medical conditions.  They can go to camp for free and do all the normal camp activities kids without medical conditions can do.

And here we are already at Tuesday again!  I hope you all have a great week!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Football, camping, pumpkin roll. The things lovely weekends are made of.

It's Thanksgiving week already!  It's a weird short yet long week but we are all looking forward to it around here.  But for now, let's take a look back at our weekend...

Sarah had swim practice Friday evening and afterwards we rushed home so she could shower and get ready for the football game.  Our team made the playoffs and the  game was at home.

While she was showering, I said goodbye to Dan who was heading out to Stone Mountain with the Boy Scout troop for a camping trip.  Peter didn't want to miss the game so I had to take up on Saturday morning but Dan is a leader so he had to go on Friday night.

Our team was ranked 8th and we were playing against the 9th ranked team so we had a good chance at winning.  And we did!  It was so exciting!  This was the first time our school has ever won a play off game.  And Peter's good friend from Our Lady of Mercy, Daniel played an excellent game. I think he scored 3 of the 4 touchdowns.

After the game, all the students rushed the field and Peter and the rest of the old gang from OLM made sure to get this picture with Daniel after the game:

Zach, Peter, Cian, Daniel, Yael, Joe, Oscar

I had to force the kids out of bed at the crack of dawn on Saturday so that I could get Peter to Stone Mountain in time for the 5 mile hike.  Stone Mountain is an hour and 15 minutes away and the hike was scheduled to start at 9:00.  None of us were pleased to be waking up so early but it was worth it to get to go to the game on Friday night.

After Sarah and I dropped Peter off at the campsite, she and I came home.  I made the dessert for Sunday lunch:

Pumpkin roll!  Yum!  It was so good.

After I made the dessert we headed to Zoe's for a healthy lunch. I had this delicious cauliflower rice bowl with grilled chicken:

Sarah had the chicken roll ups:

And we split this delicious pesto hummus:

I let her have the delicious bread and was a good girl and dipped cucumbers in the hummus.  I have officially lost about 5 pounds.  Now granted these are the same 5 pounds I keep gaining and losing but I have kept those 5 pounds off for a couple of weeks now and am hoping that I can make good choices and keep them off during the holidays.  I would be happy with that and then I can focus on getting a few more pounds off in January.  But for now, I'm just happy that I've been able to lose these 5 pounds and actually keep them off.

After lunch we did a little shopping.  One of her friends has a birthday today so we got her a present, picked up a few necessities from Target, and then headed home.  On Saturday night we watched Shrek on Netflix even though she's seen it a million times and then we were in bed by 10:30.

Here are some pictures from the camping trip that my boys were nice enough to take for me and text me:

Sunday was Mass, lunch at my parent's house, football on TV and then Dan and I had a date night!  Nothing fancy - we just went to our old confirmation class hang out, split an appetizer and mostly talked about the kids.  Having teenagers is not for the faint of heart!  :)

And now it's Monday.  I have an eye doctor's appointment and am excited to get some new frames!  I just got new frames last year but I have literally hated them ever since I got them.  I am going to go for something a little bigger and a little trendier.  I hope I can find something that looks good on me.  I really need Sarah with me but I can't justify taking her out of school to go glasses shopping with me!  :)