Free Chat Monday

Happy Monday all. Laura’s been on a weekend holiday so it’s my turn to do the Monday chat. I went to a craft fair on Friday and I got some really cute stuff for my back garden. I love the stuff I got.

I got this little birdbath thing for my “hopefully” new little deck along the front of my house. I have it in my back garden for now and won’t leave it out all winter but it sure is cute. I also love that birdhouse. It’s base is a hoe and the little perch thing is an old shotgun shell. I love it. The picture below left is a “flower” that’s welded together and the top is for a suet cake and the little flower/leaf thing on the side holds bird seed. Isn’t it cute? The picture below on the right is how it all looks, for now, in my little back garden.

That’s pretty much what I did all weekend. Just took care of the outside. Watched our Vikings lose another game. It was a very quiet living room during the end of that game. But we did see the Bears win over Dallas. Way to go for Laura.

Today I have to take my mom to her retanologist for her eye injection. It’s been ever two months now and after this next shot, it will be longer in between so I hope this treatment will work for her. She has macular degeneration. The only bad thing about this is all the traveling. It’s like a big circle to go get her, take her and bring her home. They also pack all these little old people into these appointments like cattle and it’s nothing to wait for two hours or more. These doctors only travel on Monday’s so they’re only here one Monday a month. It’s always a very long day.

Not too much else planned for the week. I’m due for my “getting rid of the gray” appointment on Tues and after that, all we really want to do this week is empty the cabin. I’d like to start now and do it little by little.

So, what about the rest of you? What was your weekend like and what does your upcoming week look like?

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35 Responses to Free Chat Monday

  1. DM says:

    love the little bird house especially. ‘getting rid of the grey appointment” πŸ™‚ never heard that one before. You’re a good daughter to help your mom out like that. Makes for a big day I’m guessing.
    On our end, we had the self serve apple wagon out again. even w/ the misty weather, we had a steady flow of traffic stopping. On Friday we’re taking off for a week…going to do one of the things on my “bucket list” (white water rafting) and spend a few days making memories. A person has to do these sort of things while they are physically able. The temptation for me is to not take the time because there is always work to do.

  2. Ellen says:

    Nice post and nice stuff you got. I am glad the craft fair was fun!

    My weekend was a bit less: Came down with the flu. No voice, sore throat and aching muscles, Bah!! Now I feel a bit better, but still not sure if I would go working tomorrow. We’ll see.

  3. SKL says:

    Very cute stuff!

    I worked this weekend, as usual. I just deleted (on purpose) a whole long paragraph (rant) about how that’s going, LOL. I’ll spare you the agony. Just a little ticked that 12 hours on a Sunday (in addition to the other 6 days) is considered light duty around here. My favorite motto recently is “it’s never enough.”

    So I think this is the first free-form post since my kid’s first vision therapy appointment. It was interesting, although having my other 3yo with me the whole time made it a bit complicated. Miss E was bewildered and eventually jealous about the fact that her sister was doing something that she could only watch. She got pretty upset, in a broken-hearted sort of way. Hopefully she’ll get used to the idea pretty soon. I spent the time reading with her, which I had hoped would make up for her sister’s special treatment, but apparently it didn’t. Tomorrow I may bring the portable DVD player to keep her amused. As for Miss A, she’s pretty motivated to do the therapy, though some of it is pretty challenging for her. She’s also talking more about academic learning. So I am hoping that all of this will make a difference for her.

    Oh, here’s a funny story (in my twisted mind). My kids have dance on Thursday pm at daycare, and the teacher wakes them up from their nap to go to dance. Miss A, who adores dance, is not doing well with this “get off that cot and shake your booty, I don’t care if you’re ravenous for your snack” stuff. So this past Thursday, on the way to dinner, I asked my kids: “did you have fun in dance today?” Miss A: “No, because I was tired.” Me: “Hmm. Well, how was Miss M?” Miss E: “Miss M was not so good, because she wouldn’t let A come out of time out. So I told her my Grandpa has a gun!” Etc. I sent an email apologizing to Miss M and we agreed that dance class should be postponed a bit so the kids can be awake and fed beforehand. (She said all the kids in that class were grumpy every week.) Oh well, here’s hoping things get better. I always wonder how the girls do when I’m not around to give them the “oh no you don’t” look. I know that with some “nice” people, who don’t set limits early on, my kids can go astray pretty quickly. I have a lot of respect for people who can work effectively with a group of little kids.

    Well, I can’t think of much else to report. Not much planned for the coming week, either. Just hoping I can keep on schedule with everything and maybe find a few minutes to relax.

    • Laura says:

      I’m laughing with you SKL… but seriously… brace yourself. The best is yet to come. Josh has just decided that his favorite stance around here is, “You’re not the boss of me! *I* make the rules in this house!!”

      Boy’s spending a LOT of time cooling his little heels in the Frownie Chair.

      • starlaschat says:

        The Frownie Chair. That’s so cute I’ve never heard that one Aaww.

      • SKL says:

        Oh, my little one keeps me on my toes. It’s rarely her actions; it’s usually her mouth. Some would call it “honesty,” others would call it “clear communication,” others would say she’s “smart-mouthed.” I just hope that she’ll come to an understanding of the right way to talk to people as she gets a little older. She understands so much, I don’t think that’s too much to ask, is it?

        Kids talking about guns is always an interesting topic nowadays. “Modern wisdom” suggests it’s a terrible thing and must be approached with great seriousness. I can only hope that the alarmist trend hasn’t / won’t take serious root around here. It’s play. It gives me more pause when my daughter tells me that she doesn’t have to listen to me because her “boyfriend” told her something different, LOL. Now granted, kids shouldn’t be going up to their teachers and threatening to have Grandpa come and shoot them, because it’s disrespectful; not because of the “gun” reference.

        • SKL says:

          Funny, I just clicked over to Free Range Kids and there’s a new “zero tolerance” story about an 8-year-old boy who had a toy gun in his backpack LAST YEAR. They want him to go to reform school THIS year (he lives in Broward County, FL, so I’m thinking I wouldn’t be wanting my 8-year-old attending reform school there!) His parents are trying to home school him, but they think he’ll have to repeat the 2nd grade if he isn’t reinstated soon. What a huge crock. So yeah, I feel like I’m taking a risk by letting my kids include pretend guns in their play. But I still don’t plan on stopping them.

          • Laura says:

            That’s part of the reason that Josh is in a private school. I just don’t trust the public schools and their over-reactive “zero tolerance” crap. We live in the middle of rural America – hunting is ingrained in this culture, both gun and bow. Nobody would blink an eye if a kid brought a toy gun to school, except that the kids are encouraged not to bring toys – they have plenty there.

  4. Sue says:

    I had fun on Friday even if I didn’t find anything! You got cute things and I really like them in the flower garden out back. Saturday we went to the Twins game and that was a lot of fun. The kids thought it was great and were very happy for the opportunity to go. Today I cleaned the house and did the laundry and watched the Vikings game only to decide at halftime to mow the lawn b/c they were stinking it up so bad! I came in the house with 6 min to go and they ended up loosing 😦 Looks like I’ve got to change my outfit for next week!

  5. Joy says:

    Click on each photo to get a good look.

  6. Laura says:

    Well. I’m finally back home. Thanks, Joy, for taking my spot today. I appreciate it.

    I really like that little birdhouse. It’s so cute! The birdies will love it. I’ve got a couple around here, but they’re strictly utilitarian. I’ve got one mounted down on the pasture fence. In early spring, the bluebirds come in, but the sparrows are right behind them, and a great war ensues. And every year, the bluebirds win. They’re vicious in their protection of that little house. They take on all comers – with the sparrows and the starlings being their biggest challengers. Once the blues have had not one, but two, or sometimes three clutches, raised and out of the house, they vacate, and let the sparrows take over. This year, the wrens came in. They just left last week. It’s a busy little house. I may add a few more, and become landlord of my own little birdie subdivision. No homeowner’s association, though. They can live any way they want.

    This weekend was incredibly busy. We went in to Chicago for a Fall Festival that we work at every year. It’s a charitable event to benefit a residential school for men with special needs. Both of my families – my immediate family, and Steve’s family – participate. We help with the ‘children’s area,’ where there are games, bounce houses, and our little corner of the world – the Spin Art machines, which are part of the crafts tent. The kids really love those Spin Art machines, and I’m pretty fond of them, too. My dad made them, and they’re very cool. This year, it rained – I’m talkin’ massive downpour, here – for a good two hours, right in the middle of the fair. The pony rides had to trailer the horses at one point, and everybody just kind of gathered and huddled in the tents. I managed to convince a bunch of them to come to the craft tents, since we’d pulled the tables well under shelter, but I think the whole event took a pretty good beating because of the weather.

    After the rain cleared, I found myself over by the pony rides – these aren’t those old, boring ones, where the ponies are tied to a rotating cooling hitch. These are three horses of varying size – one pony sized, one about 14 hands (which is the smallest a horse can be), and one about 15 1/2 hands (a “hand” is 4″, so we’re talking, oh, 4’6″, at the top of the shoulder (withers), where the mane ends, for the medium-sized horse). Anyway, I was helping with the pony rides – they actually lead the horses around a pretty good sized area. I was helping to lead, and the lady who runs the whole thing said, “We’ve got a break in the action, wanna ride Denim?” I couldn’t say “yes” fast enough!! It’s been so long since I’ve been on the back of a horse, and oh, how I miss it. So I got to ride for about ten minutes – even let her trot a bit – before I had to get down and let the kids have their turn. But I really, REALLY wanted to turn her toward that bean field and just give her her head….

    Then we came home today, listening to the BEARS WIN!!! for most of the ride. Joy, Nikki, Sue… you have my condolences for that Vikings loss. I didn’t see the game, but it did not sound pretty.

    So now we’re back, and I should go to bed and quit ranting. Midnight does that to me right before it turns me into a pum*POP*

  7. Stan Smith says:

    Before the horn myth was made popular, Viking helmets were shown to have wings on them. This is also not historically accurate. But where did these myths get started?

    • Joy says:

      If you’re talking about the Minnesota Vikings, to my knowledge they’ve always had the same thing on their helmet. Designs have changed over the years but I don’t ever remember them having wings on them. If you’re talking about the “real” Vikings, I have no idea.

  8. starlaschat says:

    What the Vikings aren’t real? :+) They need to press their super charger fly like birds button for the next game. Wings couldn’t hurt.
    Glad you had so much Fun shopping. You found adorable things for your yard. The flower with the place for the suet what a great idea. So cute. I would love to have tea at your place it has such a wonderful feeling to it. Sounds like you have a lot of bird visitors as well that must be great. The bird bath 5 cents thats really cute too. Glad you had a good time.
    Navar’s been sick with the Flu and now I’ve been fighting it so it’s been pretty boring here just trying to figure out how to get better. He went back to school today so he’s on the mend. I’m looking forward to feeling better too.;+/

  9. Nikki says:

    With baseball still in full swing, between the Twins and Bailey we just cannot get into football right now. Win or lose, we can’t get into it. I am sad they lost though. 😦
    Well, we had a very busy Sunday. We didn’t even watch any of the Vikings game. Intended to, but it just didn’t work that way. Bailey has double headers every Sunday. Each town that plays hosts a weekend, or two in our case. That means out of town teams come to play on your fields, and you are responsible for field and park keep up, during that day. We had to be there by 8:30am for our 10am game. The two other games played, by out of town teams at 12 and 2pm. Then we played again at 4. We came home after getting the field ready for the noon game, ate, tried to watch some of the Vikings game and couldn’t get into it. Had to be back up at the field by 2 to get the field ready for the next game. So we were there practically all day, from 8:30 to 6:30. LONG DAY. Buffalo won both of their games!!! So they are now 2-2. And the rest of their schedule looks winnable! It was a fun day, met some nice people and the day was beautiful weather wise.

    We watched two movies this past weekend, Friday and Saturday night. Hot Tub Time Machine, OMG was that funny! Raunchy and inappropriate which to me, is entertaining!! I laughed out loud several times, but it’s not a movie for everyone! Then Saturday night we watched Law Abiding Citizen. Great movie, Jamie Fox and Gerard Butler, I recommend it. Good flick!

    This evening we have the big BBA ( Buffalo Baseball Association) meeting. Voting new members in, and Jason will be nominated. We have most of the team parents coming to vote him in. It should be interesting, I’ve never been to one so I’m a little curious to see how it all works.

    That’s it from me! God, good luck with Fana today. Maybe she’ll be good, considering! πŸ˜‰ Oh yea, I was just thinking, why don’t you put the deck off the back of the house, instead of the front. Much better view! Just my 2 cents, that aren’t really worth much, but there ya go anyway! LOL

    • SKL says:

      Congrats to Bailey and Jason!

    • Joy says:

      I don’t really want a “deck” out front. I just want like a “walkway” type thing. I only want to go out as far as the flowers did. I think it will look neater and cleaner and the ground will be even and I can put potted planes and a cute little table and chairs out there. We can also eliminate the front steps and find that leak under them and thus, eliminate the water in the basement in the spring or when it rains.

  10. lucy says:

    Love the many treasures you found!!

    I hate it when I end up kicking myself for not buying certain things… There’s this wooden sign that I am really kicking myself over. In my apartment we have the ‘no shoes allowed’ policy… last summer I went to Hawaii and saw the cutest little wooden sign that basically said “no shoes allowed” but with a cute little saying and an amazing carved wooden picture. It was really expensive and at the time I couldn’t justify spending that much (especially after already spending a fortune on my vacation)… now a year later I still haven’t found anything like it!! Oh well.. I’ll just keep kicking myself πŸ™‚

    My weekend was uneventful. I worked and ran errands… went out to dinner and a movie!
    Hope you all have a good week πŸ™‚

  11. SKL says:

    The nice thing about technology is that if you get that nagging feeling that you really should have bought something, you can usually buy it on the internet! Don’t ask me how I know . . . .

    I just remembered one thing I changed last week that I hope will improve our lives. Getting the kids to school on time had become such a struggle. So I changed around the schedule. The girls are now not allowed to come to the breakfast table until they are fully dressed and groomed, etc. And we are out the door at a set time, whether or not they have had time to eat their fill. You’d be amazed at how fast my kids can get their clothes on when they want to. We still struggle to get there exactly on time because I have a lot to accomplish in the morning (and thanks to the never-ending road construction surprises along our route), but at least we’ve been within a couple minutes this past week.

    Today we entered the classroom and the teacher had asked the class a question none of the early birds could answer (“what day is tomorrow?”) Finally she asked, “Does Miss E know?” Miss E said “Tuesday!” and beamed from ear to ear for the next full minute. I’m so glad that she loves learning and values knowledge. (Also, I’m glad to note that she’s not exactly getting stupid from missing the first few minutes of class each day. I’m probably too sensitive, but I don’t need those “looks.”)

    Other little new thing is that I signed the girls up for “music.” I thought they were going to offer it for free, but it’s actually now the most expensive “extra” my kids are getting. But the curriculum sounds interesting and I do highly value music education. So let’s see how it goes. It’s an afternoon class, so I hope they don’t yank my kids off their nap mats to go play the piano. We know how that is likely to work out . . . .

    • Laura says:

      I made that same discovery with Josh – he now has standing instructions to get dressed the minute he gets up. We even choose his clothing and lay it out the night before. He dawdles so much over everything in the morning… this way, I know he’s dressed down to his shoes, and everything else can be done on the fly. I even have a stash of granola bars in the truck, if he’s dawdled SO much that he’s missed his breakfast! But the getting dressed thing really does work wonders.

      Last year, I even made a sticker-chart (he LOVED stickers) that outlined each thing he had to do each morning, ie: get dressed – 6:35-6:40, potty – 6:40-6:45, eat – 6:45-6:50, etc. (yes, I built-in potty time) I also built in 10 minutes of playtime at the end, and if he earned all the stickers for the morning, he’d get that playtime. If not, his playtime was reduced by that much. It worked like a charm. I should probably do something like that this year, but he’s 7… he should be getting beyond that, and into independence. But so far, not yet…

      • SKL says:

        My kids do have a few incentives. If they get done eating by a certain time, they get a gummy bear (vitamin), fish oil (lemon flavor), and/or get to play outside for a few minutes. Depends on how early they get done. Also, they get the nice mommy instead of the frustrated, mean, haggy, dragon lady mommy for the first few minutes in the car.

        • Laura says:

          Frustrated, Mean, Haggy Dragon Lady Mommy is pretty much the standard around here!!

          • SKL says:

            I hate being that person, but being the sweet, encouraging, sacrificing mommy only makes the kids ignore their boundaries. Sometimes I hear myself going off on one of my kids and I think, “gee, if I haven’t gotten the message across by now, my kids have no brains at all. Maybe I should lighten up.” And then someone does something to make me crazy all over again. Do kids in fact have brains???

            • Laura says:

              They do, but I keep getting smacked upside the head with the “Vinegar vs Honey” lesson. I think, in this scenario, that I’M the one with the empty cranium…

              Case in point. All last week, Dragon Lady was breathing fire over The Boy in an effort to motivate him to get dressed, and he was late nearly every day. This morning, Honey Mommy decided to hang out in The Boy’s room and chat about nothing in particular while he got dressed, then in the kitchen while he was eating. He was ready ten minutes early. You’d think I’d learn.

  12. Just a Mom says:

    I love the Bird bath and the bird house they are just way too cute!
    OK… “But we did see the Bears win over Dallas. Way to go for Laura.” That there might be some fighting words!!! Actually I love my Cowboys but I think the Cheerleaders could go out on the field and play better football then the Boys are right now! I will have to accept that kick in the shin at least for right now!

  13. Sue says:

    Love the header πŸ˜‰

    • Joy says:

      Thanks. I just wish Maddie’s line wouldn’t have been there but I took 20 and this was the best one. When you’re taking them you think more will fit. It’s a very small space.

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