Thursday, October 30, 2008


1.  Mason to sleep more.
2. Elias to whine less.
3. Three bedrooms.
4.  Obama to win on Tuesday. (This one even more than the other three.)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

It's The End of the World As We Know It? Or Do You Have Your 3 Month Supply?

We are on the verge of having a new president elect in only a few short weeks.  As the election draws closer, the claws are really coming out.  It's ugly out there people.  Ugly.  Lies, spin, and accusations are flying fast and furiously from both sides of the aisle.  And I have to ask, Can't we all just get along?

Being as this is an historical election and all, I thought perhaps it is time to really sit and ponder - Are We Ready for the END of the World?  Because apparently, that is what is going to happen immediately after the elections.

So I've been looking through our emergency preparedness supplies.  You may have noticed my link on the side to the Safely Gathered In blog.  I've been really motivated by their simple, straight forward approach.  They break everything down in sections and work on one simple thing at a time.  Currently, they are working on 72 hour kits.

My 72 hour kit is currently contained in a rolling garbage can which I keep near the car.  It seemed easier than in the storage area since then I would need a key to get anything out.  This way, no matter how little time I have, I can get to things easily.  Where do you keep yours?

Here is a 72 hour kit list, the items I have 'gathered' are in red'?  

container w/ wheels or sturdy backpack
1 change of clothes person (I have the kids, but not the grown-ups)
1 set of scriptures per family
1 flashlight per person
small first aid kit
personal documents (copies of birth certificates, ss cards, wills, patriarchal blessing, insurance card, etc.)
2 gallons water per person - MINIMUM
$100 cash (change and small bills)
ax & shovel
battery powered radio and light
small sewing kit
2 light sticks
hand warmer/ canned heat
blankets or sleeping bags to be accessible at moments notice
1 small toothbrush per person
toothpaste, soap & shampoo (travel size)
silver foil emergency blankets
mosquito repellent
entertainment (crayons, card games, pencil paper, etc.)
camp stove
work gloves (2 per family)
mess kits
pet supplies
candles, matches
aluminum foil
can opener
garbage bags

So TAG - What do you have ready?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Happy Third Birthday Elias

Elias turns three today.  We celebrated yesterday with a family trip to the zoo and then had a few friends over in the evening for cake and ice cream.  Douglas had fun with the doubler getting close-ups of the animals.  

Elias had a great time and has been playing with his presents all day.  The Potter's brought Elias a great helicopter toy.  On the very first launch, the helicopter flew into a tree and got stuck.  Poor Franz had to stand on a step ladder and whack the tree until it finally released its prey.  So this morning, Douglas decided the best place to use this toy was at the park.  The 'boys' had a great time launching it there.

The other theme of the day was matchbox cars.  Grandma sent him a giant box full of cars and our friends, the Kriders, donated a handy car carrying case.  Even the birthday cake got into the swing of things!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Award Winning Author - Addison Hunter

Friday night we watched as Addison won second place in the grades 4-6 short story contest for the Pasadena Public Library.  We trecked over to the Central Library in Old Town Pasadena for the awards ceremony.  Because it was ArtNight, there were people everywhere sampling the free art, crafts and activities at the library and all the local museums.  When we arrived, the winners were all given red sashes to identify them.  Then they were taken into the auditorium where the library director presented them with a certificate and a check.  Addison's prize - a whopping $50!  I say she's taking us all out to dinner.

Here are all the winners.

And here is Addison reading her story aloud at the main circulation desk.

We are very proud of our girl!

To read Addi's story - go here.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Working Woman

This past week I have again started substitute teaching.  I am trying to work into a regular routine of working 3 days a week.  I am generally torn about this, on one hand I miss hanging out with the boys all day.  On the other hand, I don't have to spend everyday hanging out with the boys.

It seems that my working has solved a lot of Elias' bad behavior.  Apparently, I bore him.  Well no more!  He has entered into the exciting world of daycare where he runs wild with another little boy just his age.  When I pick him up, he and his friend are usually in their underwear, running around with plastic swords or dinosaurs or race cars, or, well, you get the picture.  In fact, the first 3 times I came to pick him up and take him home, I literally had to fireman carry him while he screamed - "I want to live here, I want to live here".  Hmm. good times.

But Mason still loves me.  He cries when I leave and smiles when I come to get him.  Maybe I only need one boy?

As for subbing itself, I actually really like it.  I'm also not too bad at it.  After the first day, I remembered - oh yeah, bring treats! With a little "incentive"  I usually can have a lot of fun with whatever lesson plans have been left.  And let me tell you - lesson plans for subs can be very hit and miss.  It's always a good idea to bring something extra.  Expecially when subbing middle school history classes. Like today, I watched a 50 minute video about Babe Ruth 3 times, one History Channel recording of the "Byzantine Empire" and the first half of the movie "War Games" starring a very young Matthew Broderick and Ally Sheedy.  I was really glad I had a bag of smarties and a good book.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Our Week in Review

What we've been up to.

Michele's Week
Last week, I was the chairperson for the Book Fair at Addison's school.  This involved moving a lot of books around, coordinating volunteers, and sweating through the 97 degree heat in the auditorium with no AC.  I thought our poor volunteers would simply melt away.  Fortunately, we are all still solid, and we sold a whole bunch of books, helping the school library and also putting books into classrooms.

Douglas' Week
Driving, driving and more driving.  (His current work commute is over an hour each direction.) 

Addison's Week
Addison made the transition from Brownie Girl Scout to Junior Girl Scout.  Her troop had a lovely ceremony at Cal Tech.  It was raining very lightly, which made everyone a little damp, but that didn't bother the girls.  Each girl walked across a bridge,  in the middle they stopped and traded in their brownie vest for a girl scout sash.  Addison is very excited to start working on her new badges.  

Elias' Week

Someone got a hair cut - poor kid.  We had a fun field trip to Descanso Gardens.  He loves wide open space where he can run around and chase after other children.  Other than that, his week sounded a lot like whining and tantrums.  What do you do with a two-year old boy?!!!  Seriously, what do you do?

Mason's Week

Worked on his walking.  Perfected the actions to Eensy Weensy Spider.  And, learned how to climb the ladder to the top bunk bed.  Yikes!  And here he is trying to climb into this pond.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

A Call for Soup Recipes

There are a few things, that when asked about, most people have very definite opinions. Politics, religion, and of course, what constitutes good food.     Get ready to sound off people!

Today begins October, and in honor of fall, I'd like to know what is your favorite soup or chili recipe?  If you send it to me, I will make it and post it on my food blog.

To kick this off,  Chicken Soup with Rice. 

This was recommended to me by Serena Potter.  It is a truly yummy way to warm your tummy on a cool autumn day.  (Or, if you live in Pasadena, on very hot autumn day.)  Check it out.  And please, send me your recipes.  I am in need of good soup.