Monday, June 30, 2008

We may as well have taken up smoking...

I'm estimating that my faithful readers reader does not live near The Great Dismal Swamp which has been on fire for about a month. So I don't think you can fully appreciate the horror that is our current air quality. Never before did I consider whether or not the GDS being on fire would in any way affect me, but I should have.

The fire, which started when logging equipment caught fire, had consumed 4,034 acres by last Saturday. We live easily more than 30 miles from this thing but when you step outside it's like your neighbor's house is on fire. The kids can't play outside, can't go to the pool, and are "booooorrrrreeeed". I had to rent some movies on an otherwise beautiful Sunday so that they'd have something to keep the whining down. Anyone with asthma or an allergy is miserable. And remember how I was so excited about hanging a clothes line?


Yeah well I can't hang anything out there lest it smell like I hung it in the smoker's lounge at the airport. Hopefully we'll be smoke free soon!

What was my point? I'm not sure I had one. Perhaps that was information only, no entertainment value whatsoevah!

Friday night Matt and Mike slaved over a hot grill and produced a rib extravaganza!




We had to get out Baby Nate's wipes. Speaking of Baby Nate, how cute is he?


As previously stated we did nothing fun all weekend (if you ask Zack). We watched movies, cleaned rooms, colored, played Barbies, computer games, and Wii. I finished Pride and Prejudice and started The Memory Keeper's Daughter - it's SO slow. I'm seriously not enjoying it at all. I DID end up enjoying Pride and Prejudice, I'm glad I muscled through the beginning. What are YOU reading?

Thursday, June 26, 2008


My love of Google has expanded. You know how those retched awful phone companies charge you to call information? Well Google now has Goog411, 1-800-GOOG-411 or 1-800-466-4411.

Google's new 411 service is free, fast and easy to use. Give it a try now and see how simple it is to find and connect with local businesses for free

That's my little PSA of the day!

72 degrees and holding!

WE HAVE AC! YES I was tapping my foot at 5:01. They showed up at 5:2something and with barely a "Hello" got right to work. You could tell that they were on a mission and didn't want to be here all night. The kids and I got out of the way but I noticed that Matt followed them around a bit asking questions. He loves to learn how/why things work and how you do things. He now has a hefty appreciation for heating and cooling contractors. Around 8:30 I went downstairs to see what the status was (it was still HOT), and Matt said that they had run out of some special gas they needed for saudering. I rolled my eyes imagining a "we'll be back on Monday because we have 300 other jobs to do" explanation but they ran out and acquired said gas somewhere and were back to finish. They rolled out at 10:20. This thing has super power. We watched the digits on the thermostat go down down down pretty quickly. YAY for cold air! Apparently we'll need some duct work done eventually, and "the guy" gave us a great quote, but we've got to save our pennies for that one! Literally, save.our.pennies. ;-)

In other areas, you know in movies, they have those schools for girls that offer manners and diction and balancing a book on your head? Yeah Skyler needs that. Last night, we're sitting at the kitchen table, and she asked me to take the peperoni off her piece of pizza. I tried, and made that "ooh ooh hot" sound to which she replied "Giiiirrrrrrl, ah told ya it was hot!" I just stared at her with the "what did you just say?" face on. What am I going to do with her? Watch out Grammy, I'm sending her your way!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pride and Prejudice

Wanna see my current Favorite Photo?

This is a photo by Abejon Photography for Sky's portfolio. LOVE IT!

You are going to fall down when I tell you that our air conditioner is being installed tonight!!! Holy CRAP! What are the odds that it will all go smoothly? WELL, considering that we are on day 23 of our saga, I'm guessing that something will go wrong. They're due to show at 5:00 - think I'll be in the driveway tapping my foot at 5:01? Oh and it will take about 5 hours to install - uh, that puts us at 10pm! I'm wondering how I'm going to get the kids to sleep if there are worker dudes in the house? Hopefully it won't be noisy work - I have no idea, I know it involves the attic but that opening is in the garage so... fingers crossed!

Oh - I'm reading Pride and Prejudice for the first time ever despite it being so a favorite to so many. Have you read this? So far...where's the beef? I'm not getting the allure, hopefully it will pick up!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Looky here it's Tuesday again and I haven't blogged. I would say I've been busy but that only gets me to about four o'clock on Saturday. Let's see...

Thursday The Family showed up. We had a great time enjoying a meal together and finding random spots for everyone to sleep. There were bodies everywhere!!! I was the only pitiful one that had to get up and go to work Friday morning while I was being begged to stay home and play - that SUCKED. I got to work and asked for the afternoon off, so I met The Fam at the park. They had already taken cutesy pictures without me (have I mentioned that I will not be remembered when I'm dead because I'm never in the pictures?) - not their fault but apparently a sore spot for me that I should investigate since I just mentioned it. ANYWAY, here are said pictures:

Clockwise from the blondie on top - Noah, Matt, Zack, Sky, Bryce, Ben, Lashelle

Here's one with Grandma!

We BBQd that night outside which was really nice. We had to dunk Shelle in a vat of bug repellent. The Virginia bugs LOVE the taste of her. I'm wondering if the Massachusetts ones will too??? Our local ducky family showed up after dinner begging for bread. I had a stale loaf so the kids fed them that:



Bryce stayed behind the fence because the ducks had no patience and were taking the bread out of his hand. I wish I had a picture of his face the first time it happened. Priceless.

If you run out of bread, try feeding them leftover baked potatoes. They don't like it quite so much but you get to keep throwing things at ducks which is always fun!

Brycey giving Skyler a kiss.



Friday evening we repeated the "Find a Random Place to Sleep" game. The kids all passed out and the adults played SkipBo. Matt and Ben couldn't have been more sarcastic and were teasing Mom as usual. Matt and Shelle promised to make breakfast Saturday morning. Shelle promised waffles and Matt promised eggs and bacon. WHERE'S MY WAFFLE? Mom woke up with an awful migraine so she was out of commission. Ben spent most of the day worrying about the move. Sky was sick. Shelle and I took the boys to the beach.


You can't lose Bryce because he won't move off of the blanket!!!

The water was warm and there were no jelly fish or other scary creatures. Zack and I swam and I even forced Noah in for a little while.

A few hours later The Fam. decided that they needed to get on the road so that they could break the twelve hour trip up. They packed up the truck and after some sad good byes they were on their way. Zack was upset. He wanted more Grandma time and because she was sick he didn't really get to hang out with her. Hopefully Christmas will be better.

Sunday we didn' I read a book and a half and made Sky take a nap with me. She even helped me put laundry away.

That's got me caught up through the weekend. Monday was uneventful except for the fact that friends of ours bought Rockband for Wii. Matt and Zack disappeared until 9:30 last night. I can only hope that they're going on tour!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Totally Tuesday... (get it? It's a days of the week theme...)

Tuesday evening Skyler's school put on a little dance recital. It was so freakin adorable. She was one of the oldest ones that participated and she was all smiles. Her teacher had them change costumes for each song. I have some videos and pics:

I See You:

Hat Dance:
Before you watch this one I have to tell you that Matt has been fired from all future videography duties. The first video is borderline, the second one has a nice long shot of the hat...

Last one:

Check out the lady on the left. She had something to say about every.little.thing. Seriously she didn't shut up through the whole performance and she was in the front row. I wanted to POP her.


See the little boy on the left, Nahome, he is SO adorable. He's absolutely genuinely SO excited about life. If only we could bottle a little bit of his enthusiasm...

There was even a balance beam portion... Ms. Thang went first and her smile was as wide as her face!

She was delighted with putting on a show but admitted later that night that she was scared. She certainly didn't act it - she was quite confident. I was smart this time and brought Zack's DS so that I could plug him in. He's not exactly supportive of his sister despite the fact that she goes to all of his events and manages to behave without a single electronic device. He's lucky he's so cute and loves his Mommy so much ;-)

Monday Monday so good to me...

Monday the kids had their first day of Summer Camp. Mondays and Fridays are their swim days. Zack was one of two to pass the swim test needed to go in the deep end. He thinks he's the shiznit and has now fulfilled his life prophecy and doesn't want to swim at camp anymore WTF? Kids are weird. "I passed the test so I don't HAVE to swim anymore!" HELLO? It's FUN!

Monday evening my SIL Lashelle and her two boys flew in from Oregon. We all piled in to pick them up a the airport which is at most a 15 minute ride, both my two fell asleep on the way there. I guess they had some serious fun at camp. Lashelle was a bit tired of traveling but the boys were ready to party. Noah was Mr. Talkative and Bryce wanted to play but you couldn't try to pick him up or get too close. He took to Matt pretty quickly.

OH I guess I should mention the Porta Crib Incident. For at least three months now Lashelle has been double checking all her travel plans. I told her I have my old porta crib for her so she doesn't have to bring one. She double, triple, quintuple checked with me. "No problem, I've got it". Wellll, I THOUGHT I had it. Apparently I loaned it to Mike and Amy two years ago. We're on the same return schedule and just never bothered to move it from their house to ours the thousand times we've seen each other since. I didn't check for the porta crib I thought for sure was in my attic until OH about 30 minutes before Lashelle's flight landed. That resulted in multiple frantic calls to Mike & Amy who had decided to go to the pool sans cell phones trying to track down this crib. They finally called back as we were at baggage claim and were the SUPER BESTEST FRIENDS EVAH and drove the damn thing all the way from their house to ours. I didn't tell Shelle. ;-)


Bryce & Skyler coloring

Bryce & Zack playing PS2 - Bryce is in heaven to have his own (not connected) controller

Um, where's Noah? Apparently he was Mr. Evasive and I didn't capture him on film, uh disk. I'll get him tonight!

How Amanda got her groove back...

Okay you must have been sending me lots of Bloggy Fairy Dust because I think I got my groove back. I got a bunch of pics uploaded, I'm ready to talk. Should I do separate posts? Yes I think I will. Today will be the Day of Multiple Posts. Mark your calendars.


I'll be back soon!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Sorry I haven't been blogging lately. I just haven't "felt it". I'm in a rut.

I've got some pictures to post but I've got to upload them, eh. I've got stories to tell, but I don't feel witty or story tellish. I guess I'm in a funk.

Matt's family visits this week. I'm sure that will snap me out of it. We're OH so excited to see them.

Send me happy bloggy vibes - SOMETHING! BLAH!

PS - how about a couple of PSA's?

Have you seen all of those McDonald's commercials for their new Iced Coffee? I see people drinking them all the time. WELL - read this post from another blogger. It should pretty much cure your desire to ever try one!!!

This info might be helpful while we're all trying to save money to put gas in our cars: How to find the cost of electricity. I think it's something interesting that you should do once to get you thinking. Although I hated line dried towels growing up - my kids are going to learn to hate them too ;-) Oooh I should post a picture of my ingenious idea of stringing twine between two trees.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Just call me Dorothy...

All the talk about tornadoes in the news is apparently having an effect on me. Last night I had a crazy dream about being sucked up by a tornado. I can't believe I didn't wake up nightmare style. In fact I didn't even remember the dream until I was driving to work, listening to NPR and they were discussing the latest tornadoes and I GASPED and remembered the whole dream. Matt and I were in the van, he was driving. It was windy and we noticed a tornado form to the left of the car. I was panicking looking around for where we should go. I thought that being in our car was the worst place. Then that tornado sort of went away from us. We drove up a little more and then pulled into a large parking lot of a restaurant, thinking to go in there. As we were parking we could feel the car being pulled, it was a tornado pulling our car towards it. We felt that we had to get out of the car so as the tornado was lifting the car we had the doors open and were trying to get out. Then we were both sort of suspended in air. The details get fuzzy at this point. Matt landed down first and then I must have. END.OF.DREAM. Weird huh? I've never seen a tornado or thought too much about one. Perhaps my subconscious is worried about the possibility.

The weather has finally cooled off a bit, a brief respit I'm sure. The temps were in the high 80s yesterday cooling off in the evening. The kids have one day of school left and last night you could feel their excitement. They played outside in the yard with the neighborhood kids until almost 9:00 when I had to drag them in by their ears. They were having so much fun that I hated to break it up but I made a mistake with Skyler because she was a miserable beast this morning. She is SO not a morning person. She was up way too late last night.

Tonight all the kids in the neighborhood were invited to a pool party that starts at 8:00pm. The hour is crazy but our community pool can be rented out after hours. They close at 8:00. Since it's the last day of school and the kids can sleep late tomorrow morning, the hosts thought it would be fun. I think it will be a blast - a start of summer party. The kids are already giddy that they get to GO to a party at their usual bedtime and they'll get to swim at the pool when it's dark out. Should be fun, no?

Have a fantastic weekend. We're going to be power cleaning. The West Coast Molnars are coming for a visit - we're oh so excited!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Another one breaks free of her cocoon...

Our little butterfly broke free of the cocoon that was preschool last night. She has "officially" graduated and is now a big kid headed for Kindergarten. Oddly I didn't cry. I'm excited for her. She's SO proud of herself and excited to "move upstairs". Now that she's a school-ager she can go on field trips and swimming with the big kids this summer. She'll take the bus and go to for real-deal-school.

Singing a song:




Monday, June 09, 2008

Ice ice baby...

We're still "enjoying" temperatures over 100 degrees. We spent the majority of our energies this weekend finding ways to stay cool. We borrowed a window a/c unit from friends so we can all sleep easy. Some of us are sleeping easier than others - Skyler has taken to sleeping au naturel. We ate A LOT of freeze pops. We watched a marathon of The History Channel's Ice Road Truckers I kid you not - there's nothing like watching people work in -30 degree temps to make you not feel so bad about your own pathetic situation. We also spent lots of time in the pool. The kids were pretty easy going about it except for Zack not being impressed by Skyler's outfits (or lack of outfits ;-) ) We're managing but we're anxiously awaiting Wednesday's expected drop in temperatures. Skyler and I even preferred to get in the car Sunday afternoon rather than sit at home - the car has A/C. We went and visited my Aunt Joyce (Hi Auntie Joyce!). She entertained us for a little while.

My Aunt Daina read my blog this morning and decided to share this little A/C story. I must admit I got quite a giggle out of it. You probably will too!

That's about it - the kids and I are happy to be somewhere cool this week. Matt, not so much, he works outside quite a bit. Send us frigid thoughts and links to things that are cold! We're mooching pool time off of Tom & Jenn tonight!

Friday, June 06, 2008

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad! I don't know how you've done it for so long.


My Thanks...

Well it's dead. Our A/C unit is 3500 dollars dead. We have to replace the entire thing AND the heat pump to be up to code. I was a walking anxiety attack yesterday afternoon. I can't tell if I was having hot flashes or if it was the fact that it was 100 degrees out.

Matt talked me down and had done A LOT of research by the time I got home from work. Our friends Tom and Jenn had gone through this same scenario last summer so they had several recommendations for us including an awesome a/c repair guy. Hopefully we'll have a new system in about a week, cross your fingers soon-to-be-visiting-Molnars. In the meantime, I have some thanks to make...

First and foremost, thank you to my parents who are ALWAYS there for us. I know that most people get to a certain age and think that they won't/don't need their parents but you just always do and I can't tell you how much I appreciate that.

Thanks to Tom and Jenn for having us over last night even though I know they had other things to do. Thanks for letting me cool off in the pool, for passing on all your knowledge, and for just generally being good friends. Thanks to Tom for trying to get me looped! ;-)

Thanks to Mike for calling at 10:15 even though it was late, just to check and see how we were doing. I so appreciate the "I don't care what time it is, I need to know how you are" portion of our friendship. Your talk really helped me get through some self-depressing thoughts.

And of course, thanks to Matt, my dearest, who always seems to be calmest during a crisis that works me up. We couldn't manage with two of us out of control with worry. We'll get through this and work to be more prepared for next time (NO next time, PLEASE no next time).

So, there's my Debbie Downer of a post. Check out the little thingy in the top right hand corner and gauge how much sweat is pouring off our bodies right now. It's supposed to be over 100 this weekend. Thankfully the nights are pretty cool. I've got dark towels hanging over all the windows to keep the sun out. It looks like college kids did our curtains!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Wishing for Winter?

It is SO freakin hot here! So riddle me this... At what point in the year do you think the air conditioner of someone who is a descendant of the Murphys go out?
A. Spring when you first try it out but don't really need it?
B. Winter when you don't need it at all?
C. When the heat index is over 100?

Come on! You know the answer! Ding Ding Ding - if you answered C - you are a winnner! WhAT THE FUCK? I can't even talk about this anymore right now because I'm near tears.

SO for your viewing pleasure, pics from our beach outing with our bffs yesterday:

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

LOOK, a sight rarely witnessed in nature.

Zack is PLAYING with his SISTER and they're smiling and no one is crying and or screaming.




How cute was that? Every once in a blue moon Zack will be nice to Skyler and they'll have fun together. This was yesterday, that means that today he'll be awful just so she doesn't get used to it. How come brothers are such SHITS? (Hi Tim!)

So, I went to turn Sky's light off last night and this is what I saw:



She cracks me up. She has to fiddle fart around with books or papers or drawings before she falls asleep at night and she usually falls asleep mid-draw. Aren't kids funny?

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

First Photo Shoot...GAH!

WELL, I'm not entirely sure she's cut out to be a model. She's totally temperamental with getting her picture taken... WAIT, maybe she IS the perfect model. She's already got the attitude, loves wacky outfits, hates getting out of bed in the morning, and makes comments on what people (*ahem* I) wear.

So Sunday morning we met husband and wife photographic team John and Ana at the Botanical Gardens (GET a season pass to this place if you can, it's SO beautiful and there's a huge children's area). Sky has been SO excited for this day. We spent all morning picking out her outfits and getting her all prettied up (ie, washing her hair) and as soon as John (who she's met before) got out of the car I saw her turn off. She completely shut down fun mode and booted up pissy shy toddler mode. We figured she'd warm up and headed out into the gardens. They tried their best but she was mostly a pain in the ass to work with. I think we got some good shots despite her antics. Then we headed back to their house to do some studio shots. In the car I asked her what was wrong, in the past she's loved when people want her to get all Sassy for pictures. I tried bribing her with ANYTHING. I finally got out of her that she didn't like Mr. John (nicest guy ever) and she only wanted Ms. Ana to take her pictures AND we agreed to an ice cream and trip to the pool later.

When we got to the house, I whispered to Ana that Sky was uncomfortable with Jon. They must have code words because she asked him to "bring her a glass of water" and we never saw him again. Well wouldn't you know, she came out of her shell and performed quite nicely. She changed outfits a ton of times and hammed it up. Ana thought we got some great shots.

I felt weird having all that picture taking opportunity and I myself not have any shots that I have control over to edit and post as I please. It's weird working with a photographer. I should see proofs at the end of this week. Then we work with the agent to pick the ones that will go on her composite shots. EEEEeeeek!! Do we really want to do this? Baby steps right?
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