Category Archives: Random

RTT: Why is it a “sleep”over?


Time for some more random thoughts. My favorite!

  • Ella went to her first sleepover on Saturday night. I am still recovering. Guess whose daughter won the “stay up all night contest?” The contest that maybe only 3 girls knew existed? I suspect she really did sleep, and didn’t just lay in her sleeping bag for 7 hours. But it wasn’t a lot of sleeping. And it led to a 2-3 hour nap Sunday. The reason I may swear them off is last night, an hour after she should have been asleep, she came out of her room crying. “Mama? Don’t worry about this. It’s nothing you need to worry about. But I feel really bad that you didn’t get your ornament this year.” Now? Now you feel bad about it? Two weeks past Christmas? Months after you chose to order a sketchbook with your artwork on the cover instead of an ornament? Yeah. No more sleepovers.
  • Another amusing sleepover note: They were getting ready to watch a movie Ella hadn’t seen before. Ella asked the mother, “Is it kid appropriate?” I LOVE that about her. I mean, of course it was, but I love that she wanted to make sure, instead of claiming ignorance like I would have. Plus, it’s just cute.
  • Natalie loves musicals. While Ella was napping on Sunday, Natalie and I watched Annie. Not the Disney remake, the good old Carol Burnett version. Beloved from my childhood. Which I now watch with my daughters and cringe at all the moments that I’m not sure are “kid appropriate.” Oh well. I hadn’t remembered any of that. Point is, Natalie’s favorite parts are the large group numbers. Which I love about her. And I still love that movie.
  • It’s very close to mid-January, and I’ve been sending the older girls out to play in sweatshirts. Multiple times. There’s no snow. Temps are often in the 40s, even low 50s. I don’t ever remember a winter like this. I remember a lot of Januarys where I wouldn’t have sent them out even bundled up to their noses, because it was just too cold. Global Warming, I call you friend. I mean, not really. But a little bit.
  • Zoey has started having conversations. Not with real words. But she’ll unleash a long string of gibberish and then look at me like, “Wouldn’t you agree, Mother?”
  • At one point last week I started digging through the wet stinky garbage looking for Natalie’s homework because I thought I accidentally threw it. Only to remember she didn’t have any. Later that night I sat in a recliner and put my feet up. I was going to check on something, so I put the foot rest down but didn’t move yet (probably because I was watching Chopped, and HOW DOES IT HOOK YOU LIKE THAT?). When I really went to get up, I tried to put the foot rest down again. The foot rest that was already down. These are signs that Mama needs a break. Or a glass of wine. Or both. Or maybe even a vacation. Also, I don’t even remember eating that bag of chocolates, but I think I must have.

Another week of Random Tuesday said and done. Head over to Stacy’s for more.

RTT: Followup has never been my gift.


Hooray for Random Tuesdays!

  • Thanks to Pinterest, I happened upon this laundry soap recipe. What has surprised me most is that I think it might be outperforming my store-purchased detergent. I bet I’ll make it again. But not for a long time, because so little is required that it’s going to last forever. It’s supposed to work in HE washers as well, because of the low suds. I don’t know, because I have an old fashioned, not HE washer. That works just fine. I’ve even noticed my washer looks cleaner than it did with my old detergent. Win!
  • Sending children off to school is fascinating. My girls have this whole other life that I know nothing about. They see each other at lunch, and on the playground. They have mutual friends. It cracks me up to here them talk about it like little grown ups, or at least teenagers. The other day we saw someone driving their Christmas tree home. Ella says, “I think it’s a Balsam. It has a bowl shaped bottom, and the needles are close together.” HUH. No idea she’d been learning about various fir trees.
  • There’s a slight possibility we will not have a white Christmas. In WISCONSIN. Fine by me. It’s a rarity to not have a white Christmas in the upper midwest. The small amount of snow we had has been rained out. In December. IN WISCONSIN. I figure there’s plenty of time for snow later. My children are pining for it, but they have forgotten how sick of winter coats they were by last March. I have not. Besides, it would make my annual watching of White Christmas that much more special.
  • I made pancakes for the first time last week. I just used a box mix because I wanted to see if I could navigate the griddle. If I’d known it was that easy, I’d have made pancakes so many times by now that my family would be sick of them. You know what’s funny? I’d never really made pancakes, but I’ve made crepes. Complete with flipping them in the pan. I actually did a demonstration on it in my Spanish class in high school. Because we had to demonstrate something in Spanish. So I made French crepes. Which I described making in Spanish. Confused? French wasn’t a language option at my school, and I was bitter. Some things just make sense when you’re 16.
  • We had a successful babysitter experience on Saturday! What with Zoey’s deep separation issues, I was doubtful it would be possible. But she’d gotten to know the sitter through some church things, and she did great. I feel like there’s hope in the world. You know, not without this particular girl, because last Sunday she got kicked out of the nursery at church (by which I just mean she wouldn’t stop crying, so they brought her to us). But next time she’s over I plan to just lock her in my basement. Problem solved!

Stacy’s always got more random if you’re interested.

RTT: Snow. Soap. I don’t know.


Thank you, Tuesday, for not expecting me to be organized. Although, who am I kidding? Every blog of mine is random thoughts.

  • We have 1, maybe 2 inches of snow on the ground. It settled so heavily on tree branches early Sunday morning, that it’s still there. So it’s basically a winter wonderland wherever I turn. It’s beautiful. By February it will have a couple feet added to it, and I will want to gauge my eyes out before seeing snow again, but for right now, it’s pretty.
  • Natalie is busy crying because she doesn’t like the pajamas I bought her. That she picked out. They are too tight on the legs. They fit the way they’re supposed to fit, but she doesn’t like it. Welcome to shopping for Natalie. Now, not only can I not buy clothes without her, but I can’t buy them with her either.
  • I did make my own laundry detergent. Can you believe that? Just like my prairie sisters of yore. Making my own soap. To use in my washing machine. Before running the clothes through the dryer. JUST LIKE my pioneer sisters. It’s 3 shredded bars of Pink Zote soap, 2 cups of borax, 2 cups of washing soda. It made an ice cream pail full, and I need about 1/8th of a cup per load. So far, I feel like it’s working great. I’m nearly caught up on laundry, because I sort of dig using my own soap. Thank you, Pinterest!
  • I have only managed to get the tree up with the lights on. (White lights again! Mwahahahahaha!!) Hopefully we can decorate tomorrow. With ornaments that can’t break. This is why I leave my tree up til Twelfth Night. Because I’m a little slow out of the gate.
  • Something I’m enjoying about Zoey right now, is that she won’t go in a room if the light isn’t on. It’s as good as a closed door. Turn off the light, and she’ll walk right out. It could be over tomorrow, or even in 20 minutes, but I’m going to enjoy it while it’s that easy.
  • I am strangely managing to be super excited for Christmas and not in the Christmas spirit at all, all at the same time. It’s like I’m Christmas bipolar. Fa la la la la, la bah humbug!

I guess that’s all there is to say. And really, there was plenty of it that probably wasn’t worth saying as well. More random to be found at Stacy’s place.

RTT: Getting back in the game.


Well. I’m a little behind, I see. Not even a RTT for a couple weeks. I’m not sure I have anything interesting to say, but that doesn’t mean I won’t say it. I’ll be doing a little catch up this week, but in the meantime, here’s some random that isn’t enough for posts on their own:

  • One of my favorite winter drinks is hot chocolate with a bit of cocoa chile blend sprinkled in. I mix it in with the mix before I add hot water. It gives the warming up from the hot chocolate a little extra boost.
  • It’s strange to start listening to Christmas music and think about Christmas things without snow on the ground. But that is not a complaint. NO SIR OR MA’AM. Not a complaint in the least. I will gladly make do, because the snow will come. And it will stay. And every day without snow is a Christmas gift of its own.
  • I recently made a chili casserole and PUT THE KIDNEY BEANS IN IT. Me. Who hates beans. You know what? It was kind of good. I’d make it again. Kidney beans seem to hold up better, and don’t get quite as pasty as I was thinking.
  • Interestingly enough, what spurred my recent lack of blogging was a social media boot camp. I went to one, got behind, and haven’t caught up.
  • I am stuck on Pinterest looking at craft ideas for Christmas. I like to mix in a little homemade when I can. I’m thinking of a moisturizing hand scrub for the girls’ teachers. And I’m thinking of making my own laundry soap. And I’m thinking of roughly a zillion other projects now. That I don’t have time for.
  • Do you think this is the year I’ll send out a Christmas letter? I hope so. I doubt it.

Well. That was certainly random. More randomness at Stacy’s if you’re interested.

RTT: Well. How do you like that?


Well, look at that. In the same post where I said I wasn’t going to let Thanksgiving get glossed over at my house, I forgot to include my Thankful button. #fail

So. Today I am thankful for thankful reminders. I have a lot of things to be thankful for, and it’s good to remember them. It really helps take the focus off things that can be frustrating. Like…things that start with S and end in W.

And now for some random:

  • Hey, Daylight Savings! That whole “extra hour” thing didn’t work out so hot for me. The baby decided to get up twice that night, so I think I spent it rocking with her.
  • Speaking of DST, how are you with time change? Change my clock and give me one meal at the new time, and I’m good to go. I don’t even remember that the time has changed. Captain America on the other hand, will refer to it for several days. “Well, it’s really 7 am a few days ago.” “I’m going to bed, because it’s really like 11 pm a few days ago.” I’m sure I’d have trouble with a big time zone change, but one or two hours doesn’t seem to rattle me much.
  • I have zero, ZERO interest in Dancing with the Stars. That’s really random, but I guess DST kind of made me think DWTS. I have nothing against dancing, because So You Think You Can Dance has to be one of my favorite shows on tv. I think it’s just that I like to watch great dancing. Not people learning to dance. And ballroom is generally my least favorite dance genre. Plus, the people on SYTYCD are Ah. Maze. Ing.
  • Zoey has decided that now she walks more than she crawls. Goodbye, sweet baby. Hello, toddler. But, for the most part, she still has some serious separation issues. I mean, let’s not have too much change at one time. I tend not to push it in group settings because I feel badly for the care giver. She tends to rile all the other babies up so it’s just a room of sobbing infants. But we had a church nursery victory this week! After a rocky start, she ended up doing really great! When I came in to get her, she didn’t even notice. She was sitting on the floor playing with toys. ALONE. As in, not having to be bounced around by one of the nursery workers. In all honesty, I almost cried tears of joy. Even if we’re not out of the woods, it was so good to feel like it CAN be done. Maybe she won’t get kicked out of childcare at the YMCA all of the time, just some of the time!
  • Captain America is a ROCK STAR. I’m heading out tonight for a conference tomorrow, and he’s going to wrangle kids alone. Complete with bedtimes, and getting girls off to school while toting the baby. And picking kids up from school, after possibly having to wake the baby up from a nap. And I? I WILL BE WITH GROWNUPS. HAVING SLEPT IN A HOTEL ROOM. ALONE. ALONE!!
  • On another note, I’m pretty sure Captain America has somehow paid Zoey off, or just convinced her to be rotten while shopping. I think his goal was to keep me from spending time in Target, and it’s working like a charm. After she shattered everyone’s eardrums this morning, I decided a Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate from Starbucks was in order. Because every time I take her out by myself, I feel like I need a reward of some kind. I am exhausted, and the day has only begun. But you know what? There’s a SUPER Target mighty close to my hotel tonight…MWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Stacy’s got more random at her place!

RTT: It’s still Fall and stuff.


So much. There’s so much going on. I’m working on getting the half written posts in my head fully written and actually on Ye Olde Blog. Meanwhile, hooray for Random Tuesday Thoughts!

First up, some friends are doing an awesome thing this month. If you know me, you know I LOVE Thanksgiving. LOVE it. So, with them, I’m committing to listing something I’m thankful for in every post this month. They made a cute little button.

First up: I am thankful for my sweet girls. And Captain America. They make my life interesting and fun, and I learn so much from all of them. I have been extremely blessed.

Now, some RTT:

  • Starbucks’ Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate is delicious. Really delicious.
  • We’ve gotten into the gift portion of Fall in Wisconsin. Every day that is Fall and not Winter is a gift. Because, really, Winter could come any minute. It was a strange freak of nature that snow hit the east coast but hasn’t hit here yet. I may have had a smug look on my face the entire day.
  • I am not a morning person. Why are we all Morning or Night people? Because I think I’m more like Middle of the Day. I’d lean Night, in the sense that I’d rather stay up late than get up early. But really, between the hours of 11 pm and 7:30ish am, I’d just rather be sleeping. And in the morning I need time to adjust to the idea of being awake.
  • Yesterday I made some kind of ravioli casserole in the crockpot. I may never make regular ravioli again, because it was FANTASTIC. Here’s the recipe I started with. I added a can of mushrooms. And I used ┬áChicken Herb ravioli. It received rave reviews from Captain America, who requested I make it again very soon.
  • I’m going to eat some more Halloween candy while my children are at school.
  • I am disappointed with my friends at Dr. Pepper. They made that stupid “It’s not for women” Dr. Pepper 10 commercial. Yes, I completely understand why. I totally get the marketing aspect. But I still think it’s dumb. I tried some of it, and I like it. But I don’t want to buy it because I don’t want to support their stupid marketing. Captain America thinks all of these drinks taste the same. I think he actually prefers…shhhh…Diet Pepsi. Poor guy. He never gets it because I am a buyer of Coca-Cola products. I don’t think he believes I can tell the difference between Diet Pepsi and Diet Coke. Only YESSIR I certainly could. I could also tell the difference between Diet Coke and Coke Zero. I happen to prefer Coke Zero. Perhaps a taste test is in order. Because I’m kind of a geek with nothing else to do, apparently.

More random at Stacy’s.

RTT: Pseudo food, road trippin’, all cut short by not enough nap.


Soooo…it’s Tuesday again. SHOOT! I have written at least 4 posts in my head since last Tuesday. Here’s to hoping this week I get them as far as the computer. It really isn’t my intention to make this a Random Tuesday blog. At least for now, here are some random thoughts to tide me over:

  • The McRib is back! I’m well aware of how gross it probably is in real life. I mean, meat doesn’t come in that shape. But good gracious, it’s delicious. A few days ago I was picking up dinner for the girls (they weren’t interested in what we were having, and it was a sort of “way to go on swimming lessons” treat), and I spied the McRib in the center of the menu. I stopped cold, mid-order. “I’m sorry…I just noticed the McRib…” It took everything in me to stick to the dinner plan I already had.
  • I’m loading up all the chicklettes this week and heading to see all the grandmas & grandpas. This will be the first trip of any length with Zoey out of her carrier car seat. Captain America has to keep the wheels of capitalism turning, so I’m attempting a solo parent trip. Seemed like a great idea when I was just thinking of being there, not GETTING THERE. I mean, how the stink am I supposed to go to the bathroom? It’ll take us over 5 hours. I’m going to have to go at some point.
  • I’m fairly certain I spend 75% of my day picking up food bits off the floor.
  • I don’t consider myself to be much of a cook. The crockpot is my friend. Yesterday I made Chicken Stroganoff and it was delightful. My favorite crockpot recipes are the ones where I spend 5 minutes or less preparing it, and then whenever I want dinner it’s ready. All those recipes that require browning the meat before I put them in? I skip those. If I had time to brown meat, I’d just make dinner. That’s the point of the crockpot.
  • We haven’t carved pumpkins. And now we’re going to be gone. I have a feeling there will be no pumpkins carved this year.
  • Why do you suppose my baby is up a good hour early from her nap? Let’s hope she’s stockpiling sleep time for the car tomorrow.

More random at Stacy’s.

RTT: OD on caffeine


Well. Now that I’ve traumatized anyone who has ever cooked something for me. It’s already time again for some Random Tuesday Thoughts.

  • Last Thursday I ended up with the worst migraine I’ve had since high school. I am 33. So, yeah. Math. I’m blaming the migraine on McDonald’s for not offering decaf lattes. If you can sue for your coffee being too hot, I can probably sue for too much caffeine, right? Won’t it be fun when I have my millions, and all the coffee cups start saying, “CAUTION: MAY CONTAIN CAFFEINE.”
  • I bought a little Glade candle for the kitchen, and I have to say it is the nicest candle. It’s spiced citrus, and it is the nicest smell without being all “HOLY CATS, CANDLES ARE BURNING!!” Meanwhile, Ella had a panic attack. Why are you burning a candle?? Is the fire alarm going to go off?? MOM!! I SEE SMOKE!! Yes, you do. Because it’s a candle. And I have to light it on fire for it to work.
  • I’m trying to drink more water. I don’t like water. But I’m sure it’s still a good thing. Even if it isn’t bubbly.
  • The older girls have had two days off of school for parent/teacher conferences. I know you teachers are in the building. If it gets much worse around here, don’t think I won’t drop them off and run. Just make them do some cutting or stapling or something. It’s a little too much togetherness around here. And guess what? They’re off for 2 1/2 days next week for a state teacher convention. More math! 4 1/2 days in October! That’s practically a whole week of school.
  • And now I have threatened to separate the girls and put them to work. The separation is more traumatizing than the work. They’ve totally got the whole “best of friends, worst of enemies” thing down pat.
  • I am still in love with Pinterest. I like getting all the ideas. Tips and tricks. Crafty crafts. Foods to pretend I might make. That sort of thing.
  • It’s officially Fall in Wisconsin. After a good burst of Indian Summer, it’s sweater weather. That’s really how I determine everything. What temps do I like? I don’t know. I like to be able to wear jeans or shorts, with short sleeves and maybe a light sweatshirt or sweater. I like options. Yesterday I had to pull out the shearling boots. Which makes me feel like it might be a long winter, if I’m starting that this early. It’s not necessarily that cold outside, but I am that cold.
  • Zoey decided while we were at parent/teacher conferences that maybe she walks after all. She managed quite a few steps. She’s not giving up on crawling, especially not at home, but it gave me some hope that I won’t carry her to college.

If you dig random, Stacy’s got plenty more of it.

Random Tuesday Thoughts – I carnival now!


I always enjoy seeing what Gretchen has to say on Tuesdays. So I’m going to give Random Tuesday Thoughts a whirl. I’m blog carnival-ing. I’m a blog carnivaler. Here at the shiny new blog I have two categories for my posts so far: “Seasons” and “Random.” Seems like this whole RTT thing will fit in nicely. I am nothing, if not random.

  • I’m somewhere in the middle on Steve Jobs’ death last week. I’ve seen people deifying him, and people complaining that we should stop deifying him. Cancer is a truly awful thing, and I think it’s sad when anyone experiences and especially dies from it. Plus, I grew up with Apple computers. I have never owned a PC. So I say, thank you, Steve, for the lifetime of really cool technology I have enjoyed.
  • Just when I get used to Zoey’s sleep patterns, they change. We had just gotten the hang of a mid-day, super long nap. Now the nap seems to be shortening. Do we go back to two? Move it earlier? Is she just quitting? Why does she get up a little earlier in the morning now? Crazy babies.
  • I attempted swirled nail polish I found on Pinterest. I must have done something horribly wrong, because it just made a huge mess, and now I have nail polish stuck under my nails.
  • We went to the apple orchard on Saturday morning and it was fantastic! Beautiful fall foliage all the way, corn maze, barn animals, pedal tractors, apple sampling – it was a great time. And we came home with caramel apples. Why don’t I buy them all the time? Or thank goodness I don’t because I’d weigh a zillion pounds. It was a super thick coating of very chewy caramel. I was in caramel heaven. I ignored my screaming baby because I would not put it down. I wonder if I should go back. I wonder if they have them at the candy shop in town. Oh, and the caramel apple sundae at McDonald’s? That will surely do in a pinch – it was better than I expected.
  • Friday night we wandered into our modestly sized Barnes and Noble and saw Alton Brown from the Food Network. This is not a regular occurrence, we don’t usually have celebrity authors in our midst. I don’t think we have since we moved here a couple years ago. So it was a very fun start the weekend. I really want to know where he ate when he was here, and what he thought. Here’s my new friend Alton and me:

  • I think it’s crazy that we’re in peak Fall Color form, and yet my rose bushes continue to bloom like crazy. I feel like it says less about our gardening skills, and more about the fine people who lived here before us. Captain America gave them a good prune in the spring, but we really haven’t touched them since. One of them is particularly beautiful, because the roses seem to be in little clustered bouquets. I’d take a picture but it’s dark now. It’s always dark now.

So there you have it. Some Random Tuesday Thoughts. If you like random as much as I do, Stacy’s got a whole linky list of it back at her place. Just don’t expect me to contain my random in only one day a week.

Just us? Alright, then.


So. I keep thinking about Buddy the Elf, and his “Smiling is my favorite!” And how whenever I say something is my favorite, I hear it that way in my head. Do you have phrases like that?

Captain America (I’m leaving the name I guess – FYI if you’re new – he’s my husband!) was just saying the other day how he can’t hear “Alright stop” without “collaborate and listen.” Shout out to the Vanilla Ice fans! I have to say, I can’t do it either. And then sometimes we just break into Ice, Ice, Baby and our children get confused.

What about “marriage?” Do you then flip it to “Mawwage. Mawwage is wot bwings us togevah today…” Please tell me you know that’s from the Princess Bride. And if you don’t, stop what you are doing and go buy it. Do not rent it – you’ll want to own it.

“Brrrr…” becomes “I said BRRRRRR…it’s cold in here…there must be some Toros in the atmosphere!” (Bring it On).

Another of Captain America’s favorites is any time the girls say “Mama?” he says, “Don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys.”

I know I’m blanking on many, many more. And this doesn’t even begin to cover the number of times in a week where a line from friends sneaks into my head, and possibly my conversation.

Does this happen to you? Is it just us?