December 29, 2008

Busy week and a half

I've been wanting to post this since last week, but I wasn't going to do so, until I could get my husband to dump the pictures from his camera onto the computer. Finally after much nagging asking nicely, he got it done today! YAY! I guess I could learn how to do it myself, but that would be too easy. So without further ado, here's what's been going on in our busy lives. The Friday before Christmas we finally got our first 'real' snow of the season. It snowed into Sunday, with a bit of a reprieve here & there. Alas, Friday & Saturday it was a powdery fine snow, not good at all for making snowmen, but the girls learned how to make snow angels. By Sunday afternoon, it started turning to rain; good enough for packing & making a snowman. WOOHOO! Well, Saturday, late in the afternoon as it was turning dark we let the girls go out and play in it. This picture is my 2 girls and the landlord's daughter who's a few months younger than mine.
L-R Emily, Rachel, Maddie

And unfortunately, we didn't get a picture of the snowman, but he was about 6' tall. As he started to melt on Tuesday, my husband said he must be an Obama supporter. I asked why, and I shouldn't have. He said, "Because he's leaning left." I married this comedian.

Tuesday morning came and we loaded up the van and headed up to Lunenburg, MA to visit my cousin, Chriztine and my aunt Nita, who had just flown in from Ohio. Boy what a trip that woman had. Here she is 82 years young, they cancel her flight Sunday, due to weather. Monday, they let her sit in the Cleveland airport for 4 hours(she's from Columbus), try to reroute her to Boston(she was suppose to fly into Manchester, NH)and then lose her luggage. It showed up Wednesday morning at 1:30. UGH!
We were going up to bake Christmas cookies, visit, (I hadn't seen my aunt since my mom passed away almost 2 years ago) do a little sledding since they had almost 2 feet of snow there and go eat some lobsta'. Here are some pictures from the day at Chriztine's.
these are the sugar cookies, the girls & I decorated.
this is my Rudolph
this is Emmy's gingerbread woman she decorated, she was a bit heavy handed with the colored sugar.
L-R my Aunt Nita, me, my cousin Chriztine
this is me as I just crashed into Rae, at the bottom of the picture you can see Em's bum

Christmas morning came, we read the girls the story of Jesus' birth and then tore into the presents. At this particular time in life, my girls are into Cars & princesses. In case you couldn't tell from the pictures. Emmy all excited that Santa brought her Mater socks.
the girls in their new princess robes & lightning "the queen" slippers (this what they say instead of McQueen)
After all of the excitement of opening presents, the girls & I said a fond farewell to their Elmo slippers that were getting too small & had holes in the bottoms.

Emmy's in red & Rae's in black, yes, Em can be my clown at times, but they both have their moments.

I hope you and your family had a very MERRY CHRISTmas.

December 18, 2008

Wisdom

I think I've made this confession before, I am addicted to blog reading. Some of the blogs I read are my friends & it allows me to catch up on the comical things going on in their lives. Most of them are other Christians, who many times have great words of wisdom to share. I really enjoy reading Perry Noble's blog, as he usually has great things to say. As do Lots of Scotts & Bring the Rain. But today Perry linked to another post, the title is a bit shocking, but the post itself speaks great truth to those of us that are Christians. It definitely made me say OUCH! So without further ado, hop on over & read this.

December 16, 2008

Things my momma taught me(a little tribute)

I know, I know, don't faint that I'm doing 2 posts in one day. Actually wanted to do this one last year, but just wasn't in the place to do it. And I didn't really ever call her momma, it was always Mom, Mommy, or as I got older & if I was annoyed with her it was Mother(spoken with an attitude & heaviness on the ther). But my girls call me momma, so thus the title.

Probably first & foremost, my mom pounded into my head & heart that "God always provides." Seeing as how we are still among the unemployed, this is truly a good thing to know & have heart knowledge of, not just head knowledge. She taught me the principles of giving (and receiving, but I'm not always a gracious receiver). She taught me honesty and integrity. She taught me that if I'm going to do things to do my very best, do it right the first time & you won't have to do it over again. And she taught me that can't never did anything. Huh? you may be saying. If you say you can't do something you are right- you can't & you will never do anything in life if you continue to say "I can't do____."
She told me that wait broke the wagon down & makes it too hard to carry. No that isn't a typo- she wasn't talking about weight, but when I was little & would say "wait, mommy, wait!"
As a teenager & young adult in my early 20's, my mom and I had open and honest conversations about sex. My mom knew I tried many things(sex, drugs & rock n' roll) after the fact and she didn't necessarily condone them, but she loved me none the less.
She almost always let me sit in her lap; even well into my 20's. I remember I had gotten one of the Beatrix Potter books at the gas station & I sat in her lap & she read it to me. She was the coolest mom. I remember when I turned 21 & she took me out for my 1st "official" drink. But she didn't want me to drink & drive & so when I went out for my 25th b-day & was too drunk to drive, she came & picked me up.

We didn't always have the best relationship. I remember shortly after my folks got divorced and I must not have been too happy with the rules at our house. I wrote her a letter telling her I wanted a divorce too. She kept that letter in her wallet, I think until the day she died. I remember when I realized that going to church wasn't just something we did on Sundays, but it was about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ; I said some not very nice things about my parents and how they had raised me in "religion" and not taught me anything. I later realized that what they did teach me gave me the foundation I have today. I remember her not being very happy with me when I told her I wanted to be baptized again, because it was a choice my parents had made for me. It wasn't a very good conversation & shortly after that conversation she thought I had joined a cult. Thankfully, she realized that I hadn't joined a cult & we repaired our relationship.

I hope I can be as good a mom to my girls, as my mother was for me. Miss you lots, Lucy!

Birthday shout outs, and other miscellaneous rants

I have a WHOLE LOT of birthday shout outs that I'm combining into 1 post, so here goes. Today is/was(which is proper-since she is deceased?)my mom's b-day. She always told me she shared her birthday with Beethoven & Bach, but in researching it, I didn't find Bach; & that the Boston tea party happened on her birthday too.(wow, that seems like a nice run-on sentence.) I was always a bit envious, because the only somewhat famous person/object who shares my b-day is Bugs bunny. Well, today is also my good friend Dawn's son's b-day. So Happy b-day W-bear. To see a picture of the over the top cake she did for his b-day go here.
In other b-day shout outs, my sis-in-law, Jess, turned 30 yesterday. Yep, I posted her age, 'cuz she's just a young whipper snapper. :) Some dear friends of mine, Tim & Melissia(who also happened to whine about turning 30), their b-days are the 21st & 10th respectively. Also, my BFF Renae's daughter, Jill's b-day is the 9th. My step-mom's b-day is the 19th. And I certainly can not forget the Christmas brigade of b-day's either. My cousin, Amy's is the 24th, my good friend Hollie's is the 25th, & my big brother, Mikey's is the 26th. It is kind of cool that my cousin & brother are exactly 2 days apart and their 1st born children are about 1 week apart. There are other b-days, but some of these people I haven't talked to in awhile, so I won't bore you with listing them.

Missing my mom. Emotionally, I'm okay, most days. But I miss just being able to pick up the phone & whining about telling her how the girls are doing; what funny things they have said or done lately. I miss the fact that my girls won't really remember "Mimi Lucy." Lucy was my nickname for my mom & the girls call my mom & my mom-in-law "Mimi;" they couldn't really say Grammy, so it turned into Mimi. They know that Mimi Lucy is with Jesus in heaven.

I know I was going to post about some other stuff, thus the title for this post, but for the life of me, I can't remember what it was. I hate when I lose my mind. So, I guess good night for now.

December 13, 2008

'Tis the season

My husband & I usher at Providence Performing Arts Center(PPAC). We have been doing this for 3 years now. It is good, because we get to see shows for free & on occasion have a night out on the town together, all for very little cost. (gas money if we have to pick up my mother-in-law, who doesn't drive) This weekend is the "annual" Nutcracker ballet. I had to work tonight & I passed out programs. The area of the theater we work in changes for each show if you want it to. I like working on the door, because you get to see everyone come in & their outfits; from blue jeans with holes in them & ratty, untied tennis shoes to very fancy outfits. Tonight an adorable almost 4 year old came through my door and I gave her a program, not because she can or can not read, but because maybe someday she'll want to put it in her scrapbook. Her name was Ella & she ever so politely said thank you with no prompting from mom or dad when I handed her the program. (I found out her name after the fact, as they left early.) But it just amazes me some of the outfits I see coming in there. Fussy's fight the frump would have a field day! fussypants.typepad.com
Sorry I didn't feel like doing the whole little link thing.
Time for bed.

December 6, 2008

Cute things your children say

Wednesday my girlfriend Dawn agreed to watch my girls, so Bill & I could go Christmas shopping. We stayed out way later than I planned, but part of that is we got such a late start on our day. Went to leave and couldn't locate the gift cards we had been given for Christmas shopping. They weren't lost, only temporarily misplaced; in fact they were right where I always put gift cards we have. Then when we finally got everyone in the van, it wouldn't start. Ended up having to jump it and got the battery replaced the next day. So, I had originally told Dawn we'd be there about 10:30 but it was closer to 11 by the time we made it.
I tell her to give the girls quiet time on the couch, if they fall asleep great, if not that's okay. Well, Rachel still getting over her laryngitis falls asleep for about 1/2 hour until she slumps over and Emily starts yelling at her to get out of her space. Great! Now Rachel is awake. Again, not the end of the world, but the nap would have been good for her.
So we're driving home after picking up the girls and I ask Emily about above story. She says she didn't wake her sister up, Rachel says she did and the did not, did too's start! I quickly stop this and say it isn't a big deal, but from the back seat I hear Rachel say, "But, God knows." It was kind of said under her breathe, but loud enough that I could hear it. OH MY GOODNESS! It was all I could do to not bust out laughing.

December 2, 2008

busy weekend

Well, our thanksgiving weekend was busy. Thursday we went to our friends, the Kerr's, for Thanksgiving. Her brother & his family were in town, as well as her folks. Ken(her brother)made some absolutely lovely shrimp on the barbie, as an appetizer. Dawn always tells me the secret to moist poultry is brining your chicken or turkey. She is soooo right. The entire meal was delightful and afterward we played a little Mexican train dominoes.

Friday, I was hoping to accomplish various things around the apartment, but instead ended up helping hubby & the girls put up our Christmas tree. We do every other year here at home, so last year we were away. It was a bit bittersweet to be decorating our tree & combining a lot of the ornaments we had with ones my mother used to use/I grew up with. I did get a few things done other than that & in the afternoon, Daddy made snowmen ornaments with the girls. I was impressed to say the least.

Saturday dawned, and Daddy had mentioned going to La Salette to see all the pretty lights. We called our friends, the Kerr's to see if maybe they wanted to meet up and go with us. It was a done deal. Afterward we went back to their house for dessert and hot chocolate and I was hoping a game of Norwegian dice(some may know it as Farkle). No such luck on the dice.

Sunday was church obviously. My mother-in-law needed a ride to the bank and we all came home after that and took nice long naps. I should have known something was up with Rachel at that point, when she took an almost 3 hour nap and went to bed without a fuss when we got home from having dinner at my mother-in-law's.

Monday came and Rae was not 100%; I could tell(as us moms always can). She had 2 episodes Monday night of a croupy sounding cough within a couple hour time span. The second one scared me a bit, but thankfully we avoided the ER and she went to the doctor's this am. She has laryngitis, but the doctor said at their age, when the vocal cords get inflamed, it can make it difficult for them to breathe. She had a one dose shot of steroids and other than not wanting to go to bed tonight is doing much better.

I hope the busyness of this past weekend is no indication of what the month of December is going to be like.

November 24, 2008

Counting our blessings/ What an awesome God I serve

Phillipians 4:19 NIV And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

Matthew 6:25-26 NIV 25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

With this being Thanksgiving week & in light of what happened to us yesterday at church, I just wanted to share a few things.

My husband left retail in 2006 after many years in it. We toyed with the idea of keeping it part time. "Just in case." Just in case, you may ask? Just in case what? Just in case the job he took didn't work out, or our finances became too tight, or fill in the blank with your just in case scenario. Well, we felt God leading us NOT to keep the retail job part time, so we didn't. Fast forward 9 months. My husband calls me on a Friday afternoon, while the girls and & I are in NY helping clean up my mother's estate, with the news that he just lost his job. God provided for us by giving us distributions from my mother's estate, along with unemployment. In the fall he got a photography job, but the conditions were not as good as they seemed. Now we are at the beginning of 2008. He got a temporary job at Staples corporate, well that ended the end of June, and we have since been unemployed.

Now here is the good news of how awesome God is. ALL of our bills are current. That is not saying our financial situation is not tight! It is beyond tight & I feel like I am constantly trying to juggle our money around to pay bills. We have NOT used any credit cards since Bill lost his job in June. And God has been blessing us in other ways that may seem small, but are really huge.
A friend blessed us with much needed groceries- I'm not talking just dry goods, I'm talking meats-chicken, pork, hamburger, fresh fruits and veggies, etc. We received money in the mail, as well as a grocery store gift card, 2 separate occasions. And Sunday at church we received more cash along with 2 gift cards- 1 to Walmart & 1 to Toys'r'us. The cash was absolutely huge as I was wondering how we were going to come up with our rent money. This just took a huge chunk out of it.
And we also had a 2 week period the end of September of NO unemployment or other funds coming in. A big thank you to God's servants who listen to him & are obedient.
GOD IS TRULY AWESOME & FAITHFUL!!!!

November 20, 2008

Mind boggling things I saw today

I had a doctor's appointment this afternoon for a checkup. As I was driving to it, I saw several things that boggled my mind. If any of you reading in bloggy land have ANY insight to the following things, please do share.
Bumper sticker on a car. First of all let me just say I like to read bumper stickers; yes, I can read them and still pay attention to the road. This bumper sticker was a fish- like the Christian fish; but it wasn't the Christian fish. And it wasn't the darwin fish either. Inside it had the word WITCH, on it's head it had the little pointy witch hat & underneath the fish was a broom. I had to call several people to see if they had any inkling, the best I got was from Supra at our church. She told me it must be a fishwich & that maybe the person put it on their car for the halibut!
Okay, you know you cracked a smile at the halibut part. But I am honestly not kidding about this bumper sticker. One of the nurses at my dr's office is into wiccan, but it was very busy in there today & she wasn't my nurse so I couldn't even ask her. I do pray for her though.

As I was getting off my exit there is a bicycle store right next to my exit. On the outside of their building they had a sign that said: "electric bicycles." HUH??? Wouldn't that be a moped? or a scooter? Wouldn't electric defeat the whole purpose of pedaling/exercise???

I come up to a major intersection. On my left is a 24 hour Walgreen's, across the street on the other left corner is a 24 hour CVS, across the street from CVS on the right corner is a Rite-Aid, and on my right is Dunkin' Donuts. Three MAJOR drugstores & 2 of them are open 24/7. Am I the only one this strikes as odd? Are there so many people in this neighborhood who get sick that they need 3 drugstores on opposite corners from each other??? WOW!!!!

In other news today, for my few faithful readers, who have been praying for my nephew, please continue to pray for him and his mom, my sis-in-law. Adam ended up in the hospital with a blockage in his bowel. They say there is no evidence of cancer stuff, so don't know what is causing the blockage. Also due to all the other stuff going on with him, they can not use all of the traditional methods to clear out the blockage, so if they can't get it cleared he will have to have yet another surgery! Obviously my sil is stressing about all of this & I can't say as I blame her, but she fell Monday night and cracked 3 ribs so she isn't doing to great herself. Please pray for both things to be resolved quickly.

Well, it is late & I must be off to bed. Hope y'all have a good evening.

November 18, 2008

Good news, bad news

So, thinking just maybe Rae, doesn't really have an ear ? infection, but it's just a little clogged; we administer said anti-inflammatory, the girls play a little play doh & then she lays on daddy with the heating pad. All per the on-call triage nurse. (okay, not the play doh part) Sunday dawns and we decide not to say anything about above incident, figuring, if she really is in pain, she'll say something. Not a peep out of her.
However, today we are sitting at the table at lunch & notice Emily's ear inside, but not down in the canal, is bright red. I need to back track a bit here. A week or so ago, she had scratched her ear so hard she made it bleed. We started monitoring it & putting a bit of neosporin in it to keep it soft & help it heal. Great, all gone! But she keeps asking for the medicine in her ear. Even last night(Sun.); so Bill puts a dab of my face moisturizer on it and to sleep she goes. I call the nurse to get her opinion, as I'm not one of these people who likes to bring their child(ren) in for every little sniffle and sneeze. And as I've posted before, we are a relatively healthy family, in terms of illnesses. Lo and behold, they see her this afternoon. At some point, either from when she scratched it or before that, Emily got an infection in there. So she is now on topical & oral antibiotics.

On a different front; some of my "doing life together" ladies & I got together for an afternoon out. Trader Joe's just opened here in RI, so we decided to go check it out, do lunch, and a few other stores, after church yesterday. We had a lovely time, thanks to all the hubbies for watching the children while we did this. But the best part was reading about what Bo Hunkmeister did. I'm only mildly envious, because my first b-day we were together, my husband put 37 helium balloons in my apartment with 3x5 index cards attached with 37 reasons/things he loves about me. (I happened to be out of town for said b-day & came home to this.)

GO BO! Hold that bar up high for the rest of the men!

November 15, 2008

A trip to mecca aka IKEA

So, a little while back (the exact time frame escapes me)my good friend, Maria sent me a link to enter a contest through IKEA. I'm all for entering contests if I'm not going to get more junk snail mail or spam e-mail. So I enter said contest & get a notification back that I won one of their instant $20.00 gift cards. Give them all my info & a few days later, in the snail mail WA LA(is this how you really spell that? Noah Webster must be turning over in his grave!), said gift card arrives. It has been hanging around for a while now as mecca IKEA is about a 45 minute drive heading towards Boston, from where we live. Now, not being a "true" New Englander, this doesn't really bother me. But especially with gas prices as they were(we are down close to $2.00, here), this is not a trip you make any old time or every day. So I say to the hubby after his bible study this morning; "Honey, do you feel like going to IKEA today?" His response? "Why absolutely, oh beautiful love of my life!" Okay, so he wasn't really that sickeningly sweet. But he did agree to load the girls up & head out with us. He had never been to mecca IKEA.
We get there, walk around for a while, then went & had an early dinner. As we sit down, Rachel says, "my ear hurts." Bill asks her if she wants him to pray for the pain & she in her pitiful voice says, "uh, huh." As Bill walks around the table to pray for Rae, we hear Emily say, "In Jesus' name, AMEN!" and then promptly inform Daddy that she just prayed for Rach. (as she has recently taken to calling her.) So she feels no one else needs to pray for her. Then, on the way home I called the peds office to see what I should do, as my girls don't generally get sick. Give her some ibuprofen & a heating pad when we get home & call them in the am to bring her in. Emily, again informs us that she/we already prayed for Rachel & she doesn't need any medicine, but "mommy, can I have some too?" So we tried to explain that we can all pray for Rachel's ear pain & that sometimes God wants us to use medicine to help us get better. We will have to see how she is when she gets up, in the am. I'm just praying it isn't an ear infection or strep.

Oh yeah, as we are pulling out of the parking lot, I could sense he wasn't impressed with wasting his afternoon his visit to IKEA. So in my ever observant & un-filtered way of saying things, I stupidly ask him what he thought. He says, "It reminds me of a high-end Job Lots." (I think he might have meant bldg. 19, but I could be wrong)

In the meantime my friend, Dawn, aka "the domestic goddess" & martha stewart, jr. calls me, ME!!! to ask me a recipe question. Okay, so it was on a recipe that I had given her, but still. I'll have to get it back from her to post on recipeasy. I got it from the owner of my local meat market, but since my family wasn't crazy about it, I just gave her the entire recipe.

btw- thanks Maria, for hooking me up with the IKEA give away!

November 10, 2008

Life & my nephew Adam

So, I've had several posts rattling around in my brain. (my husband would tell you, that's probably all that's rattling around in there.) But, at this point in the game, I'm like, aaahhh, too late to post them now- irrelevant. I just saw a recipe on a blog that I read that looks really yummy. I might have to try it. (I'd steal it & post it on recipeasy, but it's on Emily's sister's, Holly, blog.) Wanted to post on the election, but seems irrelevant at this point. Did get an interesting e-mail from a friend about 77 days of praying for the president. Check it out here if you want: www.presidentialprayerteam.org. I'd do the little linky thing, but I am NOT technically savvy. You show me what to do I can do it. Try to figure it out on my own, not so much.
Wanted to post about halloween, but again, seems irrelevant at this point.
Guess I should give my dad a belated b-day shout out. His b-day was Saturday the 8th. In typical Gail fashion, I bought his b-day card on October 21st,(this year); but when I went to mail it I couldn't find it, so it didn't get mailed until the 6th when my darling husband found it for me.

I do want to say THANK YOU to ALL the veterans out there who served our country. Whether you pushed paper across a desk, or fought on the front lines, it is all still important. And my family & I thank you, because we appreciate our freedoms. May God bless America, & may that be a phrase that NEVER dies in this country. Too many lives have been lost in order that we might be able to say that.

I'm really slacking in this department. My nephew, Adam, had a PET scan last Tu. & then met with his oncologist on Fri, 11/7. According to the doctor, at this point he is considered in remission!!!!!!!!!!!! CAN YOU SAY YAHHOOOOO!!!!! The PET scan came back with no signs of cancer & his tumor markers are normal. He still has to finish out his chemo, of which he has 2 more rounds. He should be done mid-January. 4 weeks after that they'll do another PET scan to make sure still no signs of cancer & then 4 weeks after that, if all is going well, they'll reverse his iliostomy & repair the hernia he got.
What is almost as awesome as that, is we as a family have been praying for him when we put the girls to bed. Well, Wed. nights is our bible study nite & my awesome girlfriend, Viv, comes over to spoil babysit the girls for us. When we came home, she asked me about Adam & said that Emily said we didn't have to pray for him any more, 'cuz he was all better. I didn't get the above report about remission until Friday. Odd?? or God! I personally like to think God.
So a huge thank you to those of you in bloggy land who have been praying for Adam. Please continue to pray for the rest of his treatments & anything else the Lord may lay on your heart.
Well, I think that is about all for tonight. It is late & I must go to bed.
Have a blessed rest of the week.
-Gail

October 30, 2008

recipeasy

So, Karen, who fixed my blog so lovely, also belongs to another blog, called recipeasy.
Well, the ladies over at recipeasy just let me join their ranks. There are some really yummy recipes on there. Just a couple I've tried and people have raved about is "gooey butter cake" and the no bake cookies. I just added my first post, so hop on over & check it out. You just might find something yummy for dinner(or another meal).
Here's the link: recipeasy.blogspot.com
Hope you enjoy.
-Gail

October 26, 2008

A HUGE THANK YOU!!!!!!

Like the new blog look??? Wish I could take credit for it, but alas, I truly am not that talented!!!! If I did this on my own, well, it still wouldn't be done. So this is a huge THANK YOU to my bloggy friend, Karen over at snakes-snails-puppydogtails.blogspot.com. I provided the pics and she put it all together for me. Maybe someday I'll be blessed to meet this lovely lady in person. But for now, I am glad to call her a bloggy friend! You should check out her other blog too- recipeasy.blogspot.com. I've gotten several YUMMY recipes off this site!

Karen, thank you again. May you be richly blessed for sharing your talents.

Fall, pumpkins & growing children

Our junior high youth group was suppose to go to a corn maze yesterday evening, but a storm came in; wind & rain. So word of mouth told me it got canceled. Well, yesterday morning it was still nice. Some friends of ours were on their way to above said corn maze, last weekend I believe, when they came across a different farm that had a lot of free stuff, geared towards all ages. With no direction or clue of where we were going, my husband, the girls and I set out to find this place. The only thing we knew was what city it was in. Now I realize being the smallest state in the union you'd think we'd be able to find this place, but no such luck. So we took back roads home and came across my favorite pick your own fruit farm. We decided to stop and get some pumpkins and see if they were still picking apples. To our pleasant surprise, the pumpkins were out in the field so we took a little walk and found two little pumpkins and one larger one that we could carve.
These are my 2 little beauties with their little pumpkins. Rachel is in the pink and Emily is in the blue.

They were also still picking apples, so we picked about a dozen or so. They were very yummy! We let the girls color the two little ones and help carve the big one. Then Dad decided to let them roast the pumpkin seeds. Pictures of the finished product will have to come later.
Hope you are having a great Fall.

October 22, 2008

Some more birthday shout outs

Well, I actually wanted to post on October 13th, & give a shout out to a dear friend of mine (and former roommate), Sharon. It was her birthday, that day & I am blessed to be able to call her a friend. Also my nephew, Jaden turned 4 last week on the 16th.
Hope you had great birthdays, Sharon & Jaden.
A wonderful bloggy friend is helping me(okay, she's really doing ALL the work!)to update my blog, so look for a face lift coming soon.

I love to read blogs and spend time on the computer, but some how I need to find a balance to doing that and the rest of my life.

God has been showing me lately, just how forgiving and loving He is; and how incredibly blessed I am. Thank you, Jesus for dying for me.

October 11, 2008

shout outs & dining out

I'd like to give a shout out to a couple of bloggy friends I have who encourage, inspire and pray for me. Thanks Karen & Peggy for sharing your lives through blogs; thus helping to inspire me to be a better wife and mom, but also letting me know that I'm not alone in some of these "battles." Thanks for your prayers and kind encouragement when you haven't heard from me in "forever." It's nice to have blog friends like that.

Dining out:

Last summer when my husband was unemployed he started to do some secret or mystery shops to at least bring in a couple of dollars to the house. This year I decided to get in on the action. Some of these shops are at eating facilities; whether fast food or fine dining. Let me just tell you. I just did one for a fine dining establishment & OH MY GOODNESS!!!!! First of all they allow you $60.00 just for lunch, to give you an idea how expensive this place is. But the food was out of this world. We ordered an appetizer of calamari, our own separate & different entrees and dessert, which was coconut creme pie. From the first bite of calamari, to the last bite of pie, all of this food literally melted in my mouth. If this is what the food tastes like in heaven I can't wait!!!!!

July 31, 2008

Another year older & other stuff

okay, Okay, OKAY!!!!! A faithful few have been saying oh for about 3 months now, that I haven't posted in a while & when am I going to do so? (see, if you look at the date I wanted to post the video closer to my b-day, but just never got around to blogging. The husband started it for me, so I could have the video.)

Well, to be quite honest a lot of things have been going on. As I'm sure any mother can tell you or agree with me, life has just been busy; and I've been "trying" to spend less time on the computer. (My husband will totally disagree with the last part of the previous sentence.)

My birthday is the end of July & my husband put together this lovely video for me. So I thought I'd share it with y'all. It's a little long, almost 10 minutes. I think for my 2nd mother's day my husband put the video together and I've been asking him to put it on my side of the computer. So he redid it this year, added pix & some new songs. The first song really gets me. Talks about changing the world, one little heartbeat at a time. Thanks honey!

video

Let me see, quick recap of our summer. The husband has been out of work since the end of June & diligently looking for a job; unfortunately not finding anything. God, however, is still God & has totally been meeting our needs. Thank you Jesus!

Fourth of July (& Columbus day) fireworks are literally in our back yard. So we decided to try to let the girls stay up this year. Unfortunately it was a bit loud for them. This is one of my favorite photos my husband took this year.



I went to the Women of Faith conference, up in Boston, on my birthday weekend. That was a blast.

August was an incredibly busy month. We had a wedding to go to in NH the first weekend in August. Then the girls and I took the train down to Dover, DE to visit my best girlfriend, Renae & her husband, Dan. We were there for about a week & a half. During that time my husband & his best friend took a weekend motorcycle trip up to NH & the Kangamangas highway. (Which is why I got to go to Delaware!) We came home from that, were home for about 2 weeks and went off to western NY to my nephew's wedding. The wedding was lovely and it was great to see some family I hadn't seen in a while.

For those who have been praying for my nephew, Adam he's doing okay. He's finished his first round of chemo & now has a blood clot in his lungs. Fortunately they caught it quickly and are treating it. Our prayer is that he would be completely healed, and be a testimony to our Lord Jesus Christ.

The girls are a lot of fun. Outside of the temper tantrums & attitudes I absolutely love this age. The other day Rae hit Em. Bill told her that wasn't nice & asked her why she did it. Her response was "Emily was antagonizing me." It absolutely amazes me the things they come out with. I will joke with my husband & various friends and tell them they're slacking or call them a "slacker." We were eating breakfast a week or so ago & Emily out of the blue says, "Daddy, you're a slacker!" Funny how it doesn't seem so bad when I say it, but to hear it out of my 3 year old's mouth, uummmmm, it sounds like a cuss word! We also have Yogi Berra living at our house. The girls will frequently say things like: "If I like it, I like it." (pointing their little fingers in earnest) Okay, Yogi! :) Or another one of my favorites; there is a show on Disney channel in the morning called "Handy Manny." If you haven't seen it it's sort of a cross between Bob the builder & Dora. My girls can say both words, but when they put it together, it comes out, "Handy Bambi." Or think- they can say "thank you," but when they say think it comes out "sink." Children -go figure!

Well, that is about all I can think of right now. So yes, I'm still here, & haven't given up on the blog. Thanks for still checking in.

June 15, 2008

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY

Happy Father's day to my wonderful husband & all of the fathers, step-fathers & other substitute fathers out there. My husband had a wonderful day/weekend I do believe. Yesterday they had the "Gearfest" at our church. This is the 2nd annual event, where dads, kids & anyone can come in, touch, climb on, in, push buttons, sirens, whatever there is to do on "big rigs." Basically boys toys. Anything you could imagine, from police cars, to fire trucks, to back hoes, motorcycles, etc. was there. Today he rode the motorcycle to church, then went for a nice long ride with a couple of his male friends. Came home & caught the tail end of our friend's b-day party. They had a bounce house, so he played in there with the girls. We had more than enough food at the party, so I ordered him Chinese. Now he's relaxing on the couch. Honey, I hope your father's day was as wonderful as my mother's day!

**Update on my nephew-
My s-i-l & he are going to Pittsburgh, PA tomorrow for a consultation on Tu. am. Then on Fri. the 20th he gets his port put in.

Happy birthday to my brother-in-law, Brian, tomorrow, June 16th.

Busy week coming up.

Going to go relax with the husband now, even though the house looks like a tornado went through it. :)
God Bless, -Gail

June 7, 2008

Update on my nephew, Adam

To any of you in blogland who've been praying for my nephew, thanks & keep praying.
Here is the update from his oncology appt. from 6/6. His cancer is a stage 4 & very aggressive. He has some spots in his abdominal wall. Rochester is an excellent hospital, but they treat every other kind of cancer except his. The oncology dr. wants to send him to Pittsburgh, PA which has the closest & best hospital to treat the type of cancer he has. Rochester needs to call Pittsburgh & see if they'll take him. If they do he will go down & have more abdominal surgery to remove any more cancer they see. Then they will insert a catheter into his abdomen to administer some very high doses of chemo. After that he can go home to NY, where he'll receive more chemo through a port -46 hours on & then a week off, repeated for a while(don't know time frame). The dr. said this cancer doesn't respond to radiation so he won't be getting any of that. They are looking about 8 mo. to a year for treatment.

Please pray for strength & peace for my brother & his family. Pray the drs. in PA decide to treat him. (not sure what the criteria would or wouldn't be)Pray that he is able to deal/cope with the chemo.

Initially, he was diagnosed with Crohn's disease. My husband & I did not have a peace about this. I felt that it was cancer, but I am not a dr. I also felt he would survive all of this.

*On another note, please also pray for my 2nd cousin, Todd who has been battling lymphoma for a couple of years now. Things are not looking good for him. He is in his early 40's & has 3 children under the age of 10. His parents buried his sister a couple of years ago. She died of M.S. This family could really use your prayers.

Thanks.
-Gail

Also happy 61st anniversary to my Aunt & Uncle, Nita & Kenn Foltz. Yep, you read that right. 61 years!

June 2, 2008

My friend, Steve **UPDATED**

So, I posted late Saturday night & included some belated b-day shout outs. Get to church Sunday am & realize I forgot a good friend of mine, Steve. So happy belated b-day Steve, on the 27th of May. I like to give Steve a hard time as our b-days are exactly 2 months apart. This makes him older than me! :) But to his credit; we were talking last week about our age, we are in the 40's now; he was saying how he is in the best shape he has EVER been in. I was lamenting the fact I'm in the WORST shape I've ever been in.
See, for the last several years Steve, his wife & older children have been taking kick boxing/krav maga. Well, this coming Saturday, Steve is taking his last test for his black belt. Apparently it is broken up into 3 parts, he has already passed the 1st two parts, so this is it. DO OR DIE! He has been working very hard at his training & getting his time down that it takes him to run a mile. My understanding is this last part is about endurance & memory; they have to execute a bunch of different moves, in a particular order, cleanly.
So, Steve, as they tell Adam Sandler in the movie "Waterboy"...YOU CAN DO IT WATAHBOY!!!! I'll be praying for you & I know you have studied to show yourself approved.
btw- any of you out there in blogland who might be reading this, I know Steve would appreciate your prayers as well.
-Gail


UPDATE** I got a praise report today that Steve passed his 3rd & final test & is officially a black belt! CONGRATULATIONS, STEVE! I knew you could do it.
For all you who prayed, thanks!

May 31, 2008

random rants & ramblings

Well, after not blogging for a couple of weeks I'm getting flak from my DH. So this is long overdue, will probably be WAAAYYY too long & rambling. I finally got him to help me fix some things on the blog. The picture in the top is from Sept. '06 when the family & my mom went to Cooperstown. It was part of the hubby's b-day present so we tried to let him do whatever he wanted while my mom & I kept the girls entertained. (they were only about 18 mo. at that point.) Hubby & I haven't changed, just the girls & you can see other pix of them on my blog(keep reading) or over at the hubby's photography blog- raephoto.blogspot.com.

Belated birthday shout-outs- my dear friend Dawn@ the-domestic-goddess.blogspot.com. Holy week ended as they pulled out of the driveway on her special day to head to OK. via RV. (she calls it holy week, as it starts w/mother's day & ends w/her b-day. No irreverence intended towards Our Lord Jesus Christ.)
And my wonderful nephew, Ryan's b-day was 2 days ago on the 29th.

Update on my other nephew, Adam, (sorry this didn't come sooner)his surgery went okay, not as good as they hoped. They removed a baseball sized tumor, about 14" of his colon & a little bit of his bladder where the tumor had perforated the colon & adhered to the bladder. His recovery seems to be going as well as can be expected. I guess he gets tired pretty easily right now, partially due to the surgery & I think a lot due to the fact of all the blood he lost before his surgery.(he was pretty anemic) My s-i-l & he flew home this am from AK to western NY, where he has an appt. w/the oncologist in Rochester on 6/6. Not 100% definite yet whether he'll be medically discharged from the military or what is going on on that front. Thank you to those who have been praying for him. His heart's desire is to remain in the military, preferably working on airplanes. Please pray he is able to continue to do this. Please pray for my s-i-l's sanity as she was an empty nester for a VERY short time. She now has 3 adult children, 6 cats & 1 dog(still a puppy)living with her & she does in-home daycare with her sister.

HAPPY BELATED MEMORIAL DAY to all who serve or have served this great nation. My family & I greatly appreciate the freedoms that we have every day. Also to their families for the sacrifices they have had to make.

Red Sox- yes, I realize it is still early in the season, but the Sox are in the lead!!!! Manny hit homerun #500 tonight!!! We could've been at that game! Ah, well, another time & another place.(isn't there a song about that?) GO SOX!

exercising & the children- last weekend & this weekend we took the girls for a bicycle ride. We have a cart that attaches to the bike, so last weekend we took the girls for a ride. We rode about 4 miles, give or take a bit. Today it was supposed to have a chance of showers this afternoon, so after the hubby let me sleep in this am(he usually isn't home in the am so I don't get to do this)& a late breakfast of french toast he said "let's load up the bikes & go for a ride before the rain gets here." (the rain didn't come, at all, okay 1 tiny sprinkle) Today we rode about 6+ miles. I pulled the girls for about 1/3-1/2 of the trip.(I say about 1/2, the DH says about 1/3.) So on the return trip back to the van, DH has the girls behind him & they are talking about mixing, mixing, mixing a mess & as I come along side I see Em twirling her arms(like the wheels on the bus motion). They seemed to thoroughly enjoy themselves. We were all beat when we got home & took lovely naps!
(insert pic here of cherubs w/helmets on in bike cart- oh wait, we didn't take that picture. I wanted to, though. It was just too late when I remembered.)
So instead of above mentioned picture here is one of their 3 yr. pix.



Well, that is about all I have to say, except, I am thoroughly enjoying this age minus the temper tantrums & getting into things they shouldn't be.

May 12, 2008

comedy of horrors

So, yesterday was awesome. Except, we went out to dinner & since I handle all the finances, I usually pay when we go out to restaurants. Last night I didn't, I let the husband pay. So what? You say, well, because of that I didn't get my purse off the back of the chair & walked out without it. I did NOT even realize this until I got up this am. Looked around the house, in the van & realized where it was. Surprisingly I did not go into panic mode. No big deal you say, call the restaurant & go get it. Right. Except on Mondays, I have 2 additional children for a total of 4 children all 3 or under. Oh, & might I add, when I contacted the restaurant, they are closed on Mon. & the owner/manager is only there for about 1 -1 1/2 hrs. to order food? So I need to go upstairs to get 1 car seat & open the garage to get the other car seat. As we are coming back down stairs Emily slips & takes a tumble down the stairs. You know how you lay sideways on a hill & roll down it? She looked kind of like that. I think it scared me more than her, but I called the ped, just in case. They said to keep an eye on her & watch for any unusual behaviors, vomiting, etc. So I get everyone loaded up, & off we go; I get my purse, check to make sure all contents are there, which they are, & off we go again. Only this time putting girls in the van, some one started playing with buttons. I throw my keys on the front seat & next thing I know I hear ALL the doors locking. GREAT, because now all the girls are strapped in & I'm on the outside & none of them can reach the lock on the door. Ok, most of the girls, Rachel was about half way buckled in. So again keeping my calm I get Rachel to squirm out of her seat & unlock the door. THANK GOODNESS! Who knows how long I'd have been sitting there if I hadn't got her to do that. We finally made it home without any further mishaps. WHEW!

-Gail

May 11, 2008

HAPPY MOM'S DAY!

To all you Mom's out there who happen to read this: HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY! I never knew how wonderful & hard motherhood could be. I am so blessed to be the mom to 2 of the most beautiful girls around. (No, not your's, although I'm sure your's are as beautiful as mine.) I remember after I gave birth, in the delivery room, nursing my girls, then when they transfered me to my room, my husband wanted me to hold them. I WAS DONE! I had carried these 2 beauties for the past 9 months, just gone through about 17 hours of labor after having 2 sleepless nights. I wanted no part of them. I remember he said, "Don't you want to hold one of them?" I honestly said, "nope, I just held them for the last 9 months honey, it's okay, you can hold them for awhile." Let me just tell you, he suckered me into holding one after that comment. There have been times in the 1st year that I often felt almost an indifference in being a mom, but now I can honestly say, I CAN NOT IMAGINE MY LIFE WITH OUT THESE TWO WONDERFUL, BEAUTIFUL LITTLE GIRLS!!!!! (insert adorable picture here, that I can't find on computer.) :)
Almost everyday these days I see more & more of their beauty & wonderment at being 3 years old in this world. Tonight after taking my m-i-l out to dinner with some of the other family, I heard my girls singing "the itsy, bitsy spider". This was how it went: the itsy, bitsy spider, spout, rain WASHED spider out, sun dried up, itsy, bitsy spider. Start over. But, what really gets me- is when they sing along with the worship songs or even at church, they may not know the words, but will hum along with us. Yep, gets me every time.
They loved on me today, A LOT! But when they wanted to hang all over dad, I didn't mind. He kept apologizing, but it really was okay!
I absolutely had THE MOST WONDERFUL mother's day. I pretty much got to do whatever I wanted. We went to my favorite park, Colt State Park. This park sits right on the ocean & has the most beautiful "orchard" of lilacs & wisteria. We had a picnic lunch & hung out & played today.
Thanks honey for helping me to have an absolutely wonderful mother's day, allowing me to be your wife & the mother to your two beautiful baby girls.
My prayer is that my children will grow up to be Godly children. (see link on the side- praying for my children)

May 6, 2008

blessings & a prayer request



My daughters are three now. WOW!!!! I'm not sure where the last 3 years went, but they went somewhere! The first couple of years were a blur. Now I'm starting to enjoy them. Have the temper tantrums started? OH YEAH!!!! They actually started a few months ago, but seem to have been getting worse of late.(is that redundant?)
I have to back up. I'm an addict, a blog addict that is. I may have previously mentioned this in another post.(I'm too lazy to go back & look) I read many blogs, most of them other Christians, but not all of them. There is one where a mom lost her 4 year old son to cancer this past January. There are a couple of people who are dealing with cancer now or have an infant they were told to abort, because he wouldn't live more than a couple of hours(btw, he's 2 mo. old now) or an infant who died just hours after being born. MOST of the blogs I read though are for fun, make me laugh & uplift me. But let me tell you what I've learned. That somewhere in this crazy place we call the world, blog-o-land, some one may be having a worse day(week, month, year, life) than me; but they are still muddling through. Through whatever their trials & tribulations may be they are still praising Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the risen one. They know that he is their rock & their strength; doesn't make the particular situation any easier, just able to bear it all up.
So let me get back to my title: blessings! I have come to realize that when my daughters aren't throwing their tantrums they are an absolute wonderful blessing. (The picture btw is their 2 1/2 yr pic/Christmas pic. I'm not especially computer savvy, so while their 3 yr pic is somewhere on the computer I couldn't find it. I will either edit this post & change the pic or you can pop over to the hubby's blog to see my darlings. Okay, I tried adding his link, but with no luck so I'll just type out the address: lifeofpictures.blogspot.com) I love hearing them talk, either to me or to each other or their friends.(or even their baby dolls or stuffed animals) One of my BFF's who'll remain nameless has told me she loves to smell her children after they come in from outside on a spring day. I love to smell my children just about any time. One of my favorite times to do this is when I wake them up in the middle of the night to go potty. They are (marginally)still small enough that I pick them up out of bed & carry them into the bathroom, then carry them back to bed. I kiss on them, tell them how beautiful they are, how much I love them & sniff the heck out of them. Some days I could just eat them alive. (good thing I'm not a cannibal) :)
So all of this brings me to the second part of my title: a prayer request.
My nephew, AJ, is 24, serving our country in the military, would like to make a lifelong career out of it, but was just diagnosed with colon cancer. This comes on the tail of the 1st anniversary of my mother's death. Right now the docs have told him the prognosis is good, but it will be a long road ahead of him.
I'm not one to post prayer requests on here at least until now; but while I haven't always been the best aunt in the world I love my nephew. Above is a pic of AJ holding his nephew(my great nephew). This is from 2005, but it is the most recent pic I have of him. I guess my prayer request is for peace for the family & proper treatment/diagnosis of his illness. Thanks!

Lord, whatever things this life may bring my way, help me to count it all joy. Help me to remember you know the beginning from the end & you knew ALL of my circumstances before they came to pass. May I be able to be like Job who said, "As for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, And at the last He will take His stand on the earth." Job 19:25 and my paraphrase of Job 1:21 "yet will I praise him."

Hope you have a blessed rest of the week. -Gail

April 11, 2008

blogging & music

I enjoy blogging, but am not a good writer. I don't feel that I'm witty & humorous like some of the blogs I read, and my use of the written English language is okay at best. I hated writing papers in college & it was somewhat of my demise. I'm also not very computer literate. If you show me how to do things I can usually master it, but there are many things I'd like to do with my blog, that I just don't know how to do. (Thanks to Karen of snakes, snails & puppy dog tails for showing/telling me how to go about adding a blog roll. Which someday will be much longer, but it is time consuming to add.) So I guess I said the above to say if I was better I'd blog more.
So Karen had in her music likes "Go fish," since I don't listen to mainstream music any more I didn't really know who/what they were. Well, let me just tell you who they are. They are a group of guys who cater to children AND adults with their music. It is rawking music geared to toddlers on up, but has disclaimers on the cd "great music for Kids that won't drive parents BONKERS!" They aren't kidding. This is Christian music; talking about all of the books of the bible, the ten commandments & their version of Jesus loves me is great! Apparently they were featured on Focus on the Family. I look forward to catching a lot more of these guys.
Today was absolutely beautiful here- thank you Jesus! I took the girls outside to play & run around. We had a good time. Have you ever listened to a three year olds' vocabulary? THEY CRACK ME UP!!! One of them said something to the other about "Actually we have to do this or that..." REALLY? Oh my goodness. I think it is because they are repeating their mother! One of them told my husband the other day, "Just a minute, I'm in the process of doing something." I say this to them all the time when they want me to drop whatever project I happen to be in the middle of so I can wait on them. Or they expect me to be their personal slave; get this, get that. So I'll ask them, "What, are your legs/arms broken?" My oldest has taken to fussing at me when I don't get whatever for her & telling me, "Yes you do, because my legs are broken." It is really hard not to laugh in her face.
I had some other things I wanted to say, but due to the hour I think they've ran out of my mind.

April 7, 2008

pet peeves

So I've posted about one of my pet peeves in the past being people who come to the end of an off ramp(or on ramp for that matter)& STOP when there isn't even a yield sign. So last Tuesday I'm on my way to my girlfriend's house for our weekly playgroup & I come to a particular off ramp where the traffic has its own lane. THERE IS NO REASON TO STOP!!!!! Lo' & behold what do you think happened to me? Yep, you guessed it, the car in front of me stopped. So I honked my horn, not in a rude way let me lay on it, but a beep, beep, beepity-beep-beep. I got the 1 finger salute, so I just smiled & waved back. As he proceeds to drive away & I go around him it was this old man & he did it again! If I wasn't in such a hurry to get to my friend's house that morning, I was very tempted to follow him into the mall. I would've asked him if that was all the command he had of the English language. Probably was a good thing I was in a hurry.
Gotta love it!

IKEA & girlfriends

So Saturday the 5th, 3 of my girlfriends & I trekked about 45 minutes to our "local" IKEA; while the dads stayed home with all of the children.(except 1 that is still nursing) We stopped in next door at Costco to visit our friend Michelle who was suppose to accompany us, but ended up covering for a co-worker. It was good to see her & at least say hi.
For those of you reading who may not know what IKEA is I'll try to explain as best I can. It is a HUGE store where you could basically decorate/design & furnish your entire house. It got its start in Europe somewhere- I want to say Sweden, because they also have a small cafe that serves a lot of Swedish products? Not 100% sure on that info, so if you really want to know- go google it. :) If you've ever watched any Veggie tale videos I can only relate it to the Madame Blueberry one & "stuff mart".
We all had a good time doing what we women love to do (shop, talk & eat in case you didn't know). Any way IKEA's prices are pretty reasonable & the stuff is pretty decent quality.
One of the things I bought I will have to return at some point. We don't have anywhere to hang coats in our apartment; so we have to rely on over-the-door hooks, which is what is in the girls' bedroom for coats & sweaters. I'm a bit tired of the girls coming in & dropping their coats wherever they want or just throwing it in the glider rocker for mom to hang up later. So I found this cool strap that fits over the top & bottom of the door. It has 5 hooks on it & some of them would have been low enough for the girls to hang coats on. Great I'm thinking to myself- this will be perfect! NOT!!!! Get it home, open it up to hang it & find that it fits very THIN doors like maybe 1/2" thick. Now really how many people do you know who have 1/2" thick doors in their house??? ARGGGHHH. Or I can look at the good side of it- I now have a reason to go back sooner than later.
Happy Monday- hope y'all have a good week!

April 3, 2008

The worst year of my life


This is a picture of my mom & my oldest daughter Rachel exactly a week before she passed away. This woman doesn't even look sick does she???? My mom fought a brave fight against her illness. I truly am glad she isn't suffering any more. Today has been surreal? -not sure that is the word I'm looking for, but for the moment it works. I haven't been overly weepy missing her today. Tried to keep myself busy so I didn't have time to really think about it. But this morning I was definitely thinking about it. Recounting in my mind exactly what was going on that day a year ago. My sister-in-law called me about 4 am that day. They had re-admitted my mom to the hospital on Monday. When I talked to my s-i-l on that Monday I asked her if she thought I needed to come back up. She said no, we'll call you if/when that happens.
My husband & I got up & threw stuff in the van & were on the road by 5 am. Now, I need to tell you how my husband drives- like a grandpa! If you get him talking in a conversation he'll slow down to about 60 on the freeway. So to my amazement & admiration he was doing 80-90 on the freeway that morning in hopes we could make the 6 hour drive to the hospital before my mom actually passed away. In fact it was totally the Lord that we didn't get pulled over on the Mass Pike. We were in the high speed lane, he was doing about 85. All of the sudden a car comes up behind us & flashes their high beams at us to move over & get out of the way. He pulls over as soon as he can & much to our surprise a state highway patrol vehicle speeds by us.
I got to talk to my mom on the phone during the trip & tell her I loved her; that I didn't want her to suffer any more & we were on our way, but if she couldn't hang on until we got there it would be okay & I understood. We were about an hour/ hour & 1/2 tops away from the hospital when my brother called me & told me she was gone. They said they'd wait for us at the hospital so I could see her one last time. When I walked in that hospital room, she looked so peaceful. And the most important part was she was no longer in pain.
After we took care of all the stuff at the hospital we went & ate lunch at a Wendy's, then my husband & I went & picked up the girls' 2 year old pictures that my mom & I had just had taken a week & a half ago at JCPenney's.
It is still hard to believe she's gone. She was the one person that I could call at 10 or 11 at night & talk to & she never cared.
My mom was a truly amazing woman. Very strong & independent, a survivor. She taught me so many things, I don't think I could even begin to list them all here. Don't get me wrong we had our ups & downs. Not too long after my parents got divorced, we must've gotten into a knock down drag out fight; because I wrote her a letter telling her I wanted a divorce from her too! She kept that letter for years in her wallet.
I happened to be living at home for my 25th birthday. She told me not to drink & drive & that no matter what time it was or where I was to call her & she'd come get me. She did! The next day my brother & sis-in-law & my 2 young nephews came into town to visit. I was sooo hung over, but we all went & picked up my car & went to COSI in Columbus.(COSI stands for center of science & industry)
She was one of those mean moms- always needing to know where I was, when I'd be home, who was going to be there for chaperones, who was going to be at the event, etc.
She instilled values & morals in me. She (& my father) gave me my foundation for my faith. But even that wasn't always an easy walk. When I got saved I wanted to get re-baptized. She would have liked to have a cow, thought I was in a cult, didn't understand why I needed to do that as I had been baptized when I was a baby. Then when I moved to RI to go to bible college & I totally knew it was the Lord, she was furious at me that I gave up my massage therapy career that I'd just spent the last few years building up.
She tried to teach me how to sew. But that was something I have NEVER had a desire to learn. Okay, maybe minutely, but that has just been recently. She was an awesome cook & an even better baker; but knew others were also as good if not better than her. I never liked her meatloaf, but I do like my aunt's.
I could talk to her about anything- yep, sex included. She didn't always approve of my lifestyle(then again I'm not too proud of parts of my past)but I knew I always had her support.
She was a proud woman, but not too proud to accept help. The things that woman taught me! I knew I'd miss her when she was gone, but I didn't think I would miss her this much.
If I could be half the mother to my girls that she was to me, I'll be doing okay.
Mom, I miss you. Can't wait to see you someday.

March 31, 2008

random thoughts

One year ago this past Saturday, March 29th, was the last time I saw my mom alive. My sis-in-law keeps telling me to stop dwelling in the past. I try not to, but I really miss talking to my mom. I miss asking her questions about the girls, like did I do this or that, or telling her what they are up to these days. My girls turned 3 this past Wednesday, on my 3rd b-day we were camping in Tenn. & my mom ended up in the hospital having gall bladder surgery. Can I just tell you, that when we were cleaning out her house, she still had her gall stones saved in a jar!?!
I use to(still do?)talk in my sleep, my daughters have started this, I'm not exactly sure how to deal with this, as I keep wondering if something is wrong with them; especially since they've been sick of late & are still a bit under the weather. Speaking of sick: the girls had their 3 year check ups on Friday. They were both running temps of 101 at that time. The good news? The dr. said it was just viral, they had to ride it out, give them ibuprofen for the fever. She doesn't have to live with them being fussy, whiny & clingy. As far as the check up went, they are doing well. Weight wise they are in the 75th percentile & height wise there is 1/2 inch separating them which puts them in the 45th & 25th percentile respectively. I absolutely love my pediatrician. She is a mom of triplets, so she understands the multiple thing & she is incredibly attentive when you are there, addressing all of your concerns/questions.
So a little over a week ago on my bff Renae's b-day, the 1st day of spring arrived. And while the sun seems to be shining a bit more these days, I know it is here because my friends' crocus' are blooming! :) And I've been seeing a lot more motorcycles out on the road. In fact the hubs is very anxious to get our bike back on the road. If anyone out there in blogger land is feeling incredibly generous & wants to donate an additional motorcycle to our cause, please feel free to leave a comment w/contact info. I don't enjoy riding by myself, but with only 1 bike that is all we can do for now. And I don't have any female friends to go riding with. Oh yeah, & the other reason I know spring is here? Baseball, pre-season has started. Yes, folks it is Red Sox time again. Sing it with me: "Take me out to the ball game, take me out to the crowd....." The husband actually taught the girls how to sing that song. It is too stinking cute to watch. Maybe I'll get a video of it & figure out how to post it.(don't hold your breath.)
I know I had other things I wanted to write about, but my mind is falling asleep.
G'night.

March 27, 2008

Birthday shout outs, happy labor day

So I'm a bit behind pretty much all the way around. So let me just start with the birthday shout outs. March 15th, our nephew Dylan turned 7; March 18th, my BFF's son(that I use to babysit)turned 31(WOW!); & March 20th, my BFF, Renae turned 29 again. We have been friends for over 20 years & besides Jesus, NO ONE knows more about me than her. Yep, not even the hubby, since we've only been together for 5 years. But yesterday was the best birthday of the month! My baby girls :( turned 3. The sad face is because they are just growing up way too fast. Rachel will tell you she turned 4 & Emily will tell you 3. Of course Rae counts 1,2,3,4,6,7... so to her maybe 4 is logical. It is amazing to me that 3 years ago they were less than 24 hours old. I love to watch how their little minds process things; one of the most obvious is their concept(or lack thereof)of time. Everything happened last night or is happening "after naps." But they certainly don't miss a trick.
Last week the stomach bug went through the entire house. The girls seemed better for the weekend, but starting yesterday afternoon Rae started running a low-grade temp. No symptoms, just the temp. & being clingy/whiny. Today Em sounded croupy & also had a low grade temp. Fortunately they have their 3 year check-up tomorrow.
Speaking of the weekend, we had the girls party at the children's museum here in Providence. Thank goodness for my BFFS' Renae, Dawn & Marsha(also my s-i-l). Dawn & I made the cake/cupcakes. Renae & Marsha did the veggies & fruit for the party. Look for a picture of Elmo soon. Renae & Marsha & their husbands drove 6 hours a piece to come to the girls b-day party. Can I tell you what that means to me???
I am truly blessed to have such wonderful friends & family.
So I took the girls to JCP to have pix taken yesterday- they did an awesome job(of course so did the photographer.) Look for those pix after the 9th of April.
If anyone who reads this has figured out a way to make your children stop growing, please feel free to share it with me.
Oh, in case you were wondering about the happy labor day (you were probably thinking that holiday is in Sept. so why is she posting on it now? weren't you?)Well, if you've ever had children you've been in labor, thus HAPPY labor day!(it is a happy occasion.)
Have a good evening & God Bless.

March 19, 2008

rants - some things are just not right!

So, I was out shopping tonite with my mommy's helper, Hannah. This young lady is almost 9 years old & my daughters absolutely adore her. We were looking at sunglasses for my girls' birthday. We walked through the Easter candy aisle & I saw something that just wasn't right. SUGAR FREE PEEPS! Yep, you read that right. SUGAR FREE! The things are pure sugar, how could they even taste good & be sugar free? Peeps are one of my absolute favorite treats. In fact, I love chocolate as much as the next female, along with caramel; so I was disappointed when I read on the web tonight that Cadbury's caramel eggs are the absolute worst, but peeps were one of the better things to eat. I think the best Easter candy to eat was jelly beans. I know weight watchers allows like 35 jelly belly jelly beans & it is only 1 point(I think, I know it is 3 or less.) I personally like peep bunnies the best. I need to dissect them when you eat them. So I eat the ears first, then the head, then the body. How do you like to eat your peeps?

March 18, 2008

LOOONNNNGGG week continues; but I'm back from the dead

So, my long week continued. I thought Emily was doing better on Sat. she ate a little bit, played a little bit & felt cool to the touch. Alas, it wasn't quite over. Went to church Sunday am, put the girls in nursery, the lady who was in there said to me, "Is she not feeling well? She isn't her usual chipper self & just wants me to hold her." Now if you know my daughter there are few people she wants to hold her. So, since we were in the baby nursery we took her in with us. (we only had 2 18mo. olds) Again she played a little bit, but didn't want to be far from mom & dad. Go home, try to rest, they were having none of it. So we needed to go to the mall to get a b-day present for my nephew. In the middle of the store she lets loose all over dad. Great! I wasn't so embarrassed for us, but more sympathetic for the other shoppers.
Monday morning dawns bright & early, get up to take care of a few things for the hubby to go to work. And about an hour later I'm stricken with the dreaded stomach bug. I never realized how difficult it is to parent when all you want to do is lay on the couch & sleep(& lick your wounds). Dad's job right now doesn't afford him the luxury of coming home to help out & to top it off he had a meeting at church last night. Thank goodness for wonderful friends & neighbors- Jen made us dinner last night.
Today I'm back from the dead, a bit worn out, but 100 times better than yesterday.
Praise God.
-Gail

March 14, 2008

LOOONNNNGGG week

Here it is Friday evening. What a long week. Why has it been such a long week you ask? Well, Mondays I babysit for a friend. She has a 2 1/2 year old & a 5 month old. So it is essentially like I have triplets & a new born. We made it through Monday relatively unscathed. Tuesday morning dawns bright & early at 5 am with my oldest daughter puking her guts out. This goes on all day. While I love my husband & he is an awesome daddy sometimes he can be a bit over protective about his daughters' health. (I don't really fault him for this, I just try to humor him.)I know it is just a stomach bug, but he wants me to call the pediatrician. So I do. They tell me the vomiting has been lasting about 12 hours & the other end, well, a couple of days or so. She still has the lower end.
Last night at 11:30pm the 2nd daughter starts with the vomiting. Needless to say I didn't get a whole lot of sleep last night. Oh & she wants me to do everything she saw me doing with her sister in the last few days. So immediately after emptying her entire stomach contents she wants juice(actually as she is still vomiting she's asking for juice). How do I explain to an almost 3 year old that it will immediately come back up & she has to wait a little while. Not only that, but can I just tell you how much Veggie Tales & various other children's television I've watched this week.??? While I believe we should all have a daily dose of vegetables(aka veggie tales)I'm a bit vegetabled out.
Here's to a healthier weekend & a much healthier next week.
God Bless, -Gail

February 13, 2008

still blogging????

Well, here it is a month & a half into the new year already. ??? (how did that happen?) For those out here who read my blog, so sorry for leaving you hanging on the Dec. 16th post. That was my mom's birthday & I had wanted to do a tribute post to her. However, the holidays were a tough time for me, as far as being depressed & missing her. I just couldn't get there. The actual holiday wasn't as bad as I thought it would be & now that we are passed that, my depression has been better.

So as far as interesting things to post on? Well, nothing more than the usual stuff in the life of a mom with 2 almost 3 year olds. Rachel has been completely out of diapers since Christmas; including at night also. Yay! Emily isn't quite there yet. She still gets a diaper at nighttime. I've never had a case of diapers last me this long!

God is amazing as always. If you are a parent I'm sure you've had him teach you a lesson or 2 through your child(ren). I think my most popular one is about listening/whining. When I talk to my children about this, he frequently has a way of reminding me how he tries to talk to me, or how I whine about many things. UGH!
Thanks, God!

So I've been hanging out at a new website/blog called Marriage hacks. They have a button to link to it, but I don't know how to attach any of that kind of stuff. (this is also why I have no blog roll.)

Hope you have a blessed day!
-Gail