Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ode to my gas-guzzling humongous Tahoe....

I was in an accident on Tuesday on these @#$$@#! slippery wintery roads. I had been on the highway for about 10 seconds when it got really slippery (note to self: having lived here for 10 years, you'd think I'd know that was a bridge right there, so would know it would ice up more quickly, but I never noticed until this fine day after this incident...) when I just lost control of the car and the back end starting coming around and put me into a tailspin. There was a state trooper at the side of the road stopped to help with another accident (the bridge...). The last thing I saw before I hit the state trooper's car was him running to get out of my way. Thank goodness he was fast. My driver's side his the rear of his car. My side airbags deployed on both sides so I was in a little cocoon and couldn't see anything. I just stayed in the car and started making phone calls (ok...some were frantic phone calls). The nice state trooper sargeant gave me a ride into work...after he gave me a ticket of course. As they were towing my car out of the ditch, he estimated that I could probably get my car fixed for "$1500 to $ his car on the other hand will be more like $3000". We followed the car I hit as they drove it into the state garage (near my work) with the back window smashed out and the back bumper flapping in the wind.

So now we have one vehicle for the time being. Matt's Nissan Maxima. A fine car by most standards. But when you have to cram a giant car seat plus 2 goodsize boys into the back seat, plus a bag of basketballs, a backpack, etc it becomes annoying. An average trip to Champaign might consist of hearing "stop touching me!" or "he's leaning on me!" or "Reese keeps poking me!" about 97 times. Pity the boy who has to sit in the middle, between the giant carseat with a sister who pokes and the other brother. I have come to greatly appreciate my third row seat and captain's chairs. Nobody has to sit next to ANYBODY in the Tahoe. A whole lot less whining going on. I don't have to stoop to put the baby in her carseat (in fact, I have the opposite problem...on tip toes to get her put in the carseat). Just lots more room for STUFF. Plus having only one car, has greatly curtailed my ability to shop. I have to stay home now. What a pain! How did Matt and I do this for the first year we were married?? (I do remember throwing more than one temper tantrum when I had to get up to drive him to the base so early in the morning).

oh's temporary. 2 weeks until I get my beloved monster truck back. And the sargeant was a little off in his estimate of cost to repair it. The estimate came back at $10,000. !!!!!! It didn't look that bad at all...but these things add up. The cost of putting the airbags back is over $1,000 by itself.

Whenever I whine about not having a car, Matt's favorite line is, "I'm not the one who hit the cop!"

Friday, January 16, 2009

I have to write it down before I forget.....

Walker is coming into his own here lately. My mellow, sweet-tempered boy has discovered that he can be feisty and throw a good fit, if he so chooses. He's made me chuckle lately with a couple I wanted to write them down.

Walker, telling me a story about Trevor's dad (Trevor is his best good buddy) said:
"Steve gave us a ride..."
Me, interrupting, trying to correct him: You mean BROTHER Smith

Walker: yeah, but I call him Steve.

Next one also involved the Smith family. Walker was going to get to go play at Trevor's house for the morning and I told him he could invite Trevor back up to our house to play, but explained that he might not be able to come since his Grandpa and Grandma were visiting from Utah.
Me: So you can invite him, but if he can't come, you're not going to get mad and you're not going to have a fit, right?

Walker: Welllll, I might have a fit......

Guess we couldn't say we weren't warned, right?!
He's cutie and we love him, even if he has discovered the good old-fashioned temper tantrum.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Woo Hoo!

I got it moved to the middle! It's amazing how user-friendly these things are....just got to actually read what it tells you to do.
Click to play 2008:  Year in Review
Create your own scrapbook - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox scrapbook

Tidying up the blog....

ok...I figured out how to make this fabulous smilebox scrapbook thing full of fun photos...but I can't figure out to put it in the middle of my blog instead of off to the side. It still works off to the side...but would look much better in the middle. Anyone know how to fix that?? There's music that goes along with that scrapbook...but it seems to collide with my playlist. I don't quite know what to do with that either. It sounds like they play at the same time. With this discovery (the smilebox) I have found a whole new avenue with which to kill many hours on the computer. It's fun and all in the name of preserving memories for posterity, right?? so it's ok.

I was going to change up my playlist...for all you Johnny Cash haters out there.....but that site is down currently. So you'll just have to enjoy him a bit longer (welcome to my childhood...I'll just throw in some Merl Haggard, Jim Neighbors and any other old timey country I can think of and it'll be complete!)

I am so excited for this holiday season! Just to be able to spend some down time with family. We are planning a quick trip for a few days and haven't let the kids know where we are going. (Wisconsin Dells, don't tell them until after Sunday) Cooper said he hopes it's someplace warmer than here. I told him it's actually colder than here, but he won't care (because there are HUGE indoor water parks...he'll be swimming and sliding and having a blast!). Matt got us a really nice room with a hot tub and fireplace on the balcony which overlooks the lake. Then we get to come home and have Christmas! Then it's Cooper's birthday. Poor kid. Although he doesn't seem to mind having his birthday over the holidays yet. For him, it's just all his favorite things rolled into one fun-filled Christmas vacation. He just figured out that he will never ever have to go to school on his birthday because it will always fall over Christmas break. That made him very happy. I can't believe he's going to be 10! (Don't even ask how old that makes me...can't believe that either)

Walker's grown up teeth are growing in nicely. We watched the newest Indiana Jones in our ghetto-fabulous basement (I'll have to take photos....a big screen TV ((way nicer than our old ones upstairs)) in our unfinished basement, in front of 2 game chairs and one queen size's great to watch movies that way!! The bed was set up down there from when Matt was working a long stretch of nights...we never took it down and now I know why!) But anyway....we rented that video to watch the other night. We saw this movie in the theaters when it first came out (a year ago?) but not since. Walker would say...'oh! I like this part!', or ' this is the red ant part' before it actually got to that part. He remembered so many details that I had totally forgotten. I was quite surprised that he actually remembered that much.

Reese is getting closer to walking. She's taken a couple of steps and now stands on her own quite regularly. She's such a slowpoke about motor skills. Guess I should have taken a few more prenatal vitamins! (Kidding Reese! If you ever read this....) She climbs all of the stairs I can no longer count on the fact that she'll stay on the same level of the house as I am. But she's easy to find...just follow the trail of destruction.

Well...I have now spent 3 hours on the I'm going to bed now!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Reality Check....

We got home a few days ago from a sudden and very unexpected trip to Utah. Matt's sister, Julie, passed away very unexpectedly at the age of 48 (a week shy of 49) due to a heart attack. We wanted to get home before life support was withdrawn so we were on a plane within about, I dunno...18 hours of deciding to go. (which by the way, flags you for 'extra security' checks by the airline, i.e., go through your things, test for explosives and pat you down. And this is on the trip home, too, my friend. One ticket guys said, "there's that shifty looking Evans family"when he saw the secret code that must mean 'strip search if needed' stamped on our ticket. The boys backpack actually tested positive for explosives on the way back home so they had to unload each picture them removing a box of half eaten candy, a Bionicle guy, another Bionicle guy, 2 more boxes of candy, some chocolate munchy stuff, gameboy, paper, pens, peanut butter crackers...on and on. Then Cooper, as the owner of the offending backpack, had to be patted the deer in headlights look on his face, I'm guessing a career in crime is not in his future.) Anyway, we made it home in time to say good-bye to Julie. And she passed quickly and quietly once everything was withdrawn. She was goofy and funny and said whatever she wanted with no censor. She didn't take crap from her 3 younger brothers either. It just seems so unfair that she should have been here for 30 more years and now she's gone. I felt so badly for Matt's mother. A mother shouldn't have to bury her daughter or son. Just shouldn't. We'll miss her as will many others. I am just so grateful that we were all together last Thanksgiving for the first time in about 9 years.

The kids had a great time playing with their cousins. They had fun although there were definite moments of sadness. All the nieces and nephews sang a primary song at Julie's funeral. Walker just sobbed through it. Which got Cooper going a bit. Which all got me going. Which made it worse. Walker is such a tender-hearted little guy. He'd cried during the song practices, so we knew he was going to have a difficult time. But he managed to get through it.

The kids got to go to a farm nearby and take a tour and milk a cow (pictures on the camera....still don't have the skillz). They got to jump and play in great big piles of cottonseed and flaked corn (cow food). They were all going to get horse rides, but the dumb horse bucked two of our little cousins off so no more rides. It made for some very scary moments, but in the end, they were physically ok....though Elsie will take awhile to recover mentally.

It was a fun trip despite the sadness. It's not fun to be back home and back in the grind of things. Was life really meant to be this busy? I kind of think not.

Gotta go put the baby to bed.

Monday, November 10, 2008

How lame am I?

Is it totally lame to come to your own blog and just sit you can listen to the music?! so sad. I have most of that music on CD, too.

I just finished this evening's activities. And tonight is a relatively easy night. Walker went to Trevor's to play (I told him Trevor could come up here and play...but somehow that got translated into inviting himself over to the Smith's yet again). Matt and Cooper went to flag football practice a little after 4 pm. Reese cried for about an hour...don't know what the deal we sat there listening to Johnny Cash on my blog (told you...lame). Everybody came home and Matt picked up supper (dinner group...yay!). We ate. Most of us anyway....Reese promptly throws anything...ANYTHING... you give her to the dog. Unfortunately, he doesn't eat things like we play pick up after dinner. He (the dog) does pretty well at cleaning up though...almost makes it worth keeping him. I said almost. Then I sat with Walker through piano practice....learning all kinds of new stuff...he's doing well. Then I sat with Cooper through piano practice...also learning all kinds of new stuff (have I mentioned that our piano teacher comes to our house!!!! isn't that the best! Thank you for the referral Taylor's!). Then I helped Cooper with some math homework (which Matt then's true that in the past I have 'helped' with his math homework and he has gone on to lose Matt feels the need to check behind me...whatever.) Then I helped Walker with his reading and word lists. Sent an email about scouts tomorrow (please release me from that calling!!! I canNOT do both cub scouts and young women's) and here I sit. whew.

How did my mother raise nine children? just the laundry alone would kill you.

Speaking of laundry....better go throw in a load or two......