Friday, September 26, 2008

Fireproof, the Movie

Tall Dark and Handsome often is able to get off work early on Fridays. Today, thanks to the kids being in school all day, we took the afternoon to go see a matinee of the new movie Fireproof. We really enjoyed Sherwood Pictures' Facing the Giants a couple years ago and wanted to support their new effort.

We both thoroughly enjoyed it. It was an excellent, high quality movie. You could occasionally tell that the acting wasn't Hollywood caliber, but overall it was very good. Having Kirk Cameron in the lead role of Caleb Holt probably helped to bring it up a notch, but the supporting actors, particularly Erin Bethea as Caleb's wife Catherine, did an impressive job as well. You can read a full synopsis in any number of other places, so I will just quickly say that the main story is of a fireman and his wife who are on the brink of divorce until he has a change of heart and decides to fight for his marriage.

Most importantly, the theme was unabashedly Christian. It was refreshing to see a movie that is wholesome and shares the message of Christ unapologetically and without watering it down. I believe anyone who is married, or may be one day, will be given lots of food for thought by this movie. I know it made me appreciate Handsome all over again! BTW, he also gives it two thumbs up!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sugar and Spice

I'll call her Pinkerbelle---got that from a book we recently read called Pinkalicious by Victoria Kann (disclaimer: the views represented in aforementioned book do not reflect the views of this blog. It's kinda cute, but a conversation regarding appropriate behavior may be warrented). The name made her laugh, and you can't get any more girly than a cross between a fairy and the color pink.

Pinkerbelle is six, just 23 months younger than Skippy. It was so exciting to have a girl after two boys. She was the perfect addition to our family, and continues to add a little sparkle to the dynamic to this day. She is the quintessential little girl. She loves pink and purple, ponies, princesses, and puppies (how's that for alliteration?). She is also the more outgoing child of the three, has more athletic tendencies, and likes to help me in the kitchen or Daddy change the oil.

Lately she has shown a little flare for decorating. She moved a bowl of fruit from the kitchen counter to the coffee table. She experimented with different plates under a cloche, deciding that the first one "just wasn't working". When we came home from apple picking, she suggested that we fill a footed bowl with apples and display it on the counter.

There's definitely a measure of spice in there, too. She has a scream that will shatter glass. She can stomp her foot for emphasis, and stick her bottom lip out so far in a pout that it's a tripping hazard. But the hugs and kisses make up for it!

2002-three weeks old

2004-playing dress-up (brothers did the hairbows)

2008-pony ride for 6th birthday; where has the time gone?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

My Addiction

I have done this nearly every afternoon for 4 or 5 years. If I miss a day, I start to get a little craving around three or four o'clock. It's crack, I tell ya, crack! But now it's time to come clean.

I confess that every afternoon I have been having one of these:

My GFIC French Vanilla Cappuccino Cooler. Made with skim milk, it's a lowfat treat. If you still believe in lowfat, which I don't. Made with organic whole milk, it's sweet, frosty, creamy goodness in a glass. But I don't stop there. I go hogwild and top it with whipped cream and a generous dash of chocolate sprinkles. Real whipped cream, from a can (I don't go as far as to whip my own), not the corn syrup-sweetened partially hydrogenated vegetable oil that comes in a blue tub. I scoop the whipped cream and sprinkles off with a small spoon and eat it bite by delightful little bite, while taking sips of the cappucino from a straw. Then sometimes I go back for more whipped cream. In fact (slurp), I'm drinking one now as I type. Mmmmmmm....

But, alas, I've decided the sugar content is really too high to be a daily indulgence, even though I only make half a serving at a time, thereby getting twelve servings from a package of six. And so, the photo you see above is of my last Cappuccino Cooler for the foreseeable future. The box is empty, and now the glass is too. Farewell, my love, my afternoon rendezvous. Your sweetness lingers on my lips. One day, when I am strong enough, I may find you again.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Middle Child

My eight-year-old has chosen the codename 'Skippy' for my blog. He loves the Skippyjon Jones books by Judy Schachner about a Siamese cat that thinks he's a chihuahua. He also has an infatuation with chihuahuas because of this. He wants to be one for Halloween, and has watched the trailer for the new movie Beverly Hills Chihuahua at least 562 times.

I don't understand this middle child phenomenon. I did not purposely decide "Skippy is in the middle. I think I'll ignore him", but somehow he often seems to get the short end of the stick. The year he turned five, we moved the week of his birthday, so we skipped it. Actually, we postponed it a week, but didn't tell him. He knew it was coming up and kept asking "when's my birthday?" and we'd say "soon, Honey, soon". I think this happened more than once, now that I think of it. We move a lot.

He's also had fewer real birthday parties than the other two. I mean, we always celebrate his birthday, but as far as having friends over and decorations and all that. Probably because we always seem to move right around his birthday. By far the most glaring omission, and the one Skippy keeps reminding me of, is his lack of baby book. I did first-year scrapbooks for the other two, and I did start one for Skippy but lost some photos and got behind and never did get back on track. Firstborn actually has two scrapbooks (remember alphabet books?), and when Skippy wants to look at photos, he gets them all out and we all sit around going "awww! Look at Firstborn!" and "Pinkerbelle was such a cute baby! Wait, is that Skippy's elbow?".

So I'm going to make this post a little mini album for Skippy, who really is the sweetest, most loving child. He was always cuddly and as a baby would burrow his head into your neck. Even now, he likes me to play with his hair or ears or whatever, and if I stop he grabs my hand and puts it back. He likes my 'mommy smell' and will sometimes just come up and sniff me, or my pillow (btw, I do not wear perfume and I do bathe; he just has a sensitive nose). He gets along well with both his siblings, he's a great reader, and writes funny stories. I love this kid!

2000-What a yummy baby! I just want to eat him up.

2001-Using baby sign for 'frog' (sticking tongue out).


2003-Decorating cupcakes. Hmm...did you already have one?

Okay, I'm new at this and it's taking way too long. I'm going to skip a year or two.

2006- At Lake Superior

2008-Showing off his work at the art fair (the penguin).

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Meet My Firstborn

My oldest child will go by the name 'Firstborn' in blogland, 1) because he is, 2) because he exhibits all the typical firstborn tendencies in a big way, and 3) because when I asked him what he wanted his blog nickname to be, he said "oobally scoobally".

Firstborn is ten years and ten months old. He has a strong sense of justice and leadership, particularly when it comes to his siblings. I'm pretty sure he thinks the family pecking order is {Dad, Mom and him}, and {the two kids}. I am sorry to say that I have unintentionally passed down my type-A personality to him and even sorrier that he's worse now at 10 than I am at 37. The road ahead is a hard one, my son, should you choose to continue on this path.

Of course, there are advantages. He is a great student. Homeschooling him was easy; he more or less taught himself. He has the neatest handwriting anyone has ever seen; all his teachers say so. He is an amazing artist, a gifted writer, and he excels at everything he does. Or, I should say, everything he thinks is worth doing, which does not include chores.

He is adventurous and enthusiastic and likes to try new things. Here he is last year at the 2007 Cub Scout Pinewood Derby:

Here he is before a baseball game in 2007. We signed him up without his knowledge.

Here he is house hunting with us earlier this year.

Here he is showing off his artwork at the end-of-year school art fair.

Can't you just feel the excitement? Okay, so I was being facetious. He is reluctant to try new things because he's afraid he'll look silly. He gets that from me. Again, I am sorry, Firstborn. He is resistant to change, probably because he's had a lot of it in his lifetime. He has lived in nine houses in his short life (more on that in future posts). If I hadn't homeschooled him K-2, he would have gone to five different schools in his academic career so far.

If he takes too much responsibility on himself, it's because, as the firstborn, a lot has been expected of him. It's sad, but that's how it is with firstborns. Really, though, Firstborn is funny, loves his immediate and extended family, and gets along with almost everybody. We like to remember him like this:



my husband. For blogging purposes, I'll call him Tall, Dark, and Handsome. We've been married for sixteen years. Yes, that's right, we got married when we were thirteen.

Just kidding. We were actually the ripe old age of twenty-one. If one of my children ever tries to get married at twenty-one, I'll...well, over my dead body! But it worked out great for us. Tall, Dark and Handsome is 6'2". I'm 5'0" in shoes. We've heard all the jokes; don't go there.

When we were first married, he had two years of undergraduate school left. Then he went to chiropractic college and took the equivalent of five academic years in three and a half real years. While working two jobs. My hero.

So, he is a Doctor of Chiropractic. Technically, that means our mail should be addressed to "Dr. and Mrs. Tall Dark and Handsome". But nobody ever does, and I'm too nice to point out that little social gaffe.

Handsome is a fabulous husband. As mentioned in a previous post, he is content to do the bread-winning and allow me to stay home and do the bread-baking. I like this arrangement quite well and will never be accused of being a feminist. He also helps out around the house and irons his own shirts. I feel a little bit guilty about that. He scores big points for putting up with my type-A personality. Really, he should get an award.

Handsome is also The Best Dad Ever. He changed diapers, got up in the middle of the night, and gave most of the baths. He is the fun parent and actually plays with the kids. Once a week, he has a one-on-one date with one of them, on a rotating basis. He does stuff like this because it makes them laugh (well, lets face it, he thinks it's funny, too). Peace out.

Family Outing

See that little family photo on the upper right side? There's a story behind it. Yesterday we went apple picking, a very fall-ish thing to do. Never mind that fall completely blindsided me one day last week with an overnight 30 degree drop in temperature. Summer slips by more quickly every year. I like fall, but what it really means is that winter is right around the corner. I'm a glass-half-empty kind of gal.

Anyway, back to the story. After the apple picking, which was fun, we took a little drive into the surrounding countryside. And we came upon a farm, way up on a hill, that had set itself up as a kind of a pumpkin patc
h/Halloween fun town. We drove halfway up the hill and parked on the grass with the three other cars. The children were bouncy with excitement. But wait, Daddy wants to get the picture that I want for my blog. He gets out the tripod and sets up the camera. Stand over there. No, sit down. No, move over a tad so there's a little bit of tree in the picture. Great! Okay, hold that while I run and get into the picture. Repeat entire sequence four or five times.

The kids did pretty well. Not too many complaints and no candy bribes needed. The two youngest start charging the rest of the way up the hill to fall funland. We rein them in and approach the ticket booth together. Two teenage girls man the booth and greet us pleasantly. The tell us there is a haunted house, a maze or something, some playground stuff, and pumpkin painting, but you have to buy the pumpkin.
It all looks very charming, and like they've put a lot of work into it.

So, how much is admission? Kids are $10, adults $7. Wait, kids are $10 each? Handsome and I do some quick mental math and look at each other. Forty-four dollars? Nearly $50 for pumpkin painting, and we have to pay extra for the pumpkin? I don't think so. We apologize to the teens, and head back down to the van. After pausing in disbelief, Pinkerbelle throws back her head and lets out a shriek which rings out from the hilltop. Tears squirt from her eyes. Skippy balls up his fists and stomps ahead to the van, lips trembling and eyes watering. Firstborn, who is almost too old for this kind of thing, uncharacteristically spares us the theatrics, but is a little disappointed nonetheless.

Hey, it's all about making memories, right? Good thing we took the photo first!

Pinkerbelle, before the fiasco

Saturday, September 20, 2008


Okay, I'm going to give this blogging thing a whirl! I've been reading other blogs for a couple of months, but hesitated to start my own, partly because it seems a little bit like waiting to be chosen for teams in gym class...will anybody pick me/read my blog?

The other thing that held me back was trying to choose a name for it. I wanted the 'perfect' name, and I didn't want to start until I had it. My husband calls me a frustrated perfectionist, because I tend to want everything to be 'just right', and I'd rather not do it at all if I think it will be anything less.

Um, get over it.

So, I don't know that Homebody is the perfect name, but I think it suits me. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines 'homebody' as "one whose life centers on home" and TheFreeDictionary
says it is "one whose interests center on home" (emphasis added).

I prefer the latter, as it suggests enjoyment, while Merriam-Webster's definition could be construed in a more negative light, as in someone who is a recluse. I am not a recluse, but I am a stay-at-home mom of three, and, dare I say it, a housewife. My wonderful husband does a great job of supporting us and allows me that luxury. My days revolve around dishes, laundry, cooking, cleaning, and all things kid, and for the most part, I enjoy it. Up until 2 years ago, I also homeschooled, and this is the first year that all three of my children are in school all day. Probably the last, too, because my oldest will be in middle school next year, and I am not at all excited about that environment, so I'm more or less planning to homeschool him again next fall.

But I digress. It's time to smash the champagne bottle on this ship and let it set sail. Welcome to my blog!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Knock-Off Party Rules

The Knock-Off Party is the last Thursday of every month. Here’s what you need to know to participate:
  • Your knock-off can be inspired by any home decor catalog, such as Pottery Barn, Ballard Designs,  Restoration Hardware, West Elm, Crate and Barrel, Anthropologie, etc.  

  • your knock-off entry must be made by you

  • you must include a picture of the original item from the catalog so we can compare

  • it must be a specific comparable item, like my lamp shade

  • don’t want something totally unique that you made that you think has "the look”; that’s awesome, but it’s doesn’t fit this party.

  • Items which have "the look", but were purchased at a different store/for less money and required no alterations from you also do not fit the party

  • you must link back to me in your post, preferably using my button code, which you can get in my right side column

  • it’s perfectly fine to knock-off something that they don’t sell anymore, or something that you see styled in the catalog or store but isn’t actually for sale.  But, in either case, I would like you to have a photo of the original item, either scanned in from an old catalog, or a photo you took in the store. 

  • it’s okay to use an old post that fits the party guidelines, just edit your post to add my link.

I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

Monday, September 1, 2008

About Me


Blogger Profile


IMG_3511 Hi! Thanks for visiting my blog! I am a stay-at-home mom of three wacky and wonderful kids. My fabulous husband works hard so I can blog full-time. Seriously, I spend way too much time here!

In April 2008, we moved into a brand new builder home (you can read about our journey to home ownership in “Parade of Homes”). I like to decorate, and now I have a blank canvas to work with, but it’s a slow process. I have more ideas than cash and energy!

I have always been thrifty, and try to be careful with the household budget, though I don’t always succeed. While thrift-store shopping is not new to me, in the last year or so I have really developed an addiction. There’s something very satisfying about finding things for my home and family that would have cost much more retail.

This blog is my creative outlet to write about all of that and more (or nothing in particular). Please leave a comment; I'd love to hear from you!

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