Thursday, May 29, 2008

World Traveller

My husband is currently in Barcelona. Yesterday he was in Prague. The day before that, he was in Helsinki.

His life is rough.

We talk to each other several times a day. You have to love that I can dial his cell phone number, and not even need the area code or those weird country codes, and I can reach him just about anywhere in the world. Except Japan. Salo Finland and Shenzhen China....yes. But the technology/most cell phones owned per capita capital of the world, Japan? No.

Go figure.

Our conversations are generally me listening to his planes, trains and automobile adventures and exotic things he ate which more often than not, gave him some kind of intestinal "issues" as I eat left over macaroni and cheese or cold pizza and tell him how the highlight of my day was that after three weeks, Erik finally pooped in the potty. So, I suppose in an odd way, we both have our own intestinal "issues" we deal with.

Tonight, the conversation was about planes. I guess he took the airplane version of a clown car from Prague to Barcelona yesterday. His body didn't even fit in the seat and had to sit sideways on the flight.

Which then had us talking about "those airlines". You know, the ones crying over the price of oil rather than poor management so they need to cut corners any way they can. First, it was the $10.00 fuel surcharge they tacked on to each plane ticket several years ago back when we thought $1.25/gallon was ridiculous and people were lined up down the street the night before the new gas hike would take effect to fill their tanks. Then there was the $3.00 segment fees for each leg. Now it's more fuel surcharges. Then last week, American announced they were going to start charging $15.00 for each checked bag.

Are you kidding me?

That's another $30 roundtrip! And if I'm just going to Disneyland with a couple of kids and had to check a couple bags, it would end up costing me as much as the plane ticket!

So, what is that going to persuade travelers to do?

As I see it, people are going to be forced to start WEARING every possible article of clothing they would normally have packed in their checked luggage ON the PLANE.

For men, they will start with wearing a weeks worth of underwear under their swimming suit, a couple of pairs of shorts followed by jeans and khakis for those dressier days. On top, the layers will be three t-shirts under two layers of button-up shirts, a flannel jacket and a winter coat. If it's not winter, the outer most layer can be substituted with pajamas. Or really, you could forgo the pjs altogether and just wear your birthday suit to bed. That would save even more space.

Women's layering technique is the same as the men only add a skirt over the jeans. I heard that the pants under a skirt thing from the '80's is back in style again. Convenient.

Yeah....laugh now but I swear, the next flight you take where you have to fork over 15 big ones just to check your bag, you'll see that guy or girl doing just as I suggested and you'll think to yourself, "DANG! That's brilliant! I wish I had thought of that!"

Then, all you would need to bring is one carry on with your essentials like the quart size Ziploc baggie with the three ounce bottles of liquids and/or gels which may or may not be confiscated because if you packed, I don't know..... say a 5 oz. tube of children's toothpaste that had less than an ounce of content left because you managed to get it TO your destination when it contained roughly 2 ounces but because the container read "5 ounces" despite the actual content left, it would be deemed unacceptable and put in the hazardous materials bin by the 18 year old why-be-consistant-security girl who obviously doesn't have kids of her own because if she did, she would know that they don't make children's toothpaste in 3 ounce travel sizes.

I think I'll rent out some space at the airport for a disposable clothing line.
I'll call it "Disposable Digs" and include a suitcase for people to put the clothes in and they can return it when they fly home. I could charge $14.00 for three days worth of disposable clothes which I think would be totally worth it. People spend that much on a slice of pizza there at the airport. You laugh........but if all of the airlines follow American's lead, you'll be thinking, "Why didn't I think of that?"

Gotta love a free market economy!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Picture perfect?

Trying to chase a 14 month old for his belated 1 year photo is as tiring as taking four kids to Walmart during nap time.

At least the conversation sounds the same. "No! Don't touch that! It's icky!" and "Come back here!" or "Please leave the toy alone!"

So on the windiest, most overcast day we've had in ages, I decided to give it a try. Somehow I forgot that the last pictures I took of him he wasn't walking yet. No wonder I broke a sweat in 75 degrees.

I just wanted ONE good picture. ONE! So, I had to take 100 pictures that looked like these:

( This one is when he finally responded to my flailing arms while saying, "Ian! Hi! Hey Ian! Hi! Over here! Look at Mommy!" It's him talking to me on the phone with his now muddy hand. )

All before I could get the money shot.

And people wonder why we don't do family pictures more often.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Happy 3rd Birthday Erik!

Erik is now one big stereotypical package of a three year old!

And fondant is my new best friend.
We had a double party on Friday night with the kids in our babysitting group rotation since it was our turn. The kids LOVE a party! So, I made Erik a Blue's Clues cake and made an Ariel cake for the other birthday girl. I thought it was a good thing I didn't throw away the last Little Mermaid bath toy. I knew it would come in handy again some day.

Just look at the utter glee on the kid's face! What a ham!

Sneaky big sister and brother.
This would be Ian showing us his baby sign for "MORE!" which he does often and with fervor if chocolate is involved.

Random angles of the cake:

Sunday, May 18, 2008

My latest project

You might ask yourself, "When on earth do you find time with four kids to do all of these extra curricular things like blogging and stock trading and coming in the top 1.1% last week in the CNBC portfolio challenge (shameless plug) between planning Sharing Times, writing the upcoming Primary Program, end of the school year activities and five summer birthdays?"

That's a good question.

The short answer? Diet Coke.
The longer answer? My husband has been going out of town a lot lately and I always need a project that both keeps me sane and keeps me up until way past my bedtime ( that is if I still have the energy ) because that's the only time of the day when the house is quiet and I can actually hear myself think. Sometimes I'll have full conversations in my head while I work. Seriously. And the cool thing is that whatever I'm debating to myself about, I'm always right.'s the latest. The boy's bathroom.

I first put wainscotting on the walls:

Then took two tries to get the right shade of green:

Added little initial boards I made from wood and material plus hooks on the wall:

Oh, and while I was at it......I nailed some boards to the wall in my hallway and hung a bunch of hooks because I was tired of backpacks laying all over the floor. LOVING IT by the way!

Now I need to come up with something else to do next week..................

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Nice going CNBC

Total Portfolio Value*Top 42.3% Game Rank*204631st

4,918 (0.5%) Gain/Loss, Intraday

The above probably makes no sense to anyone but me but I'll try and explain it. See, CNBC is doing a million dollar portfolio challenge. You have 5 different portfolios each with 1 million dollars to compete each week for a prize. It started yesterday and was full of glitches. Of course. Finally, after waiting until 10pm last night to see where I stood with my earnings from yesterday's picks, I saw that I was up 4.5% or $43,000!!! I had great picks with McDonalds, Research in Motion ( thanks to the new Blackberry thingy ), Genco shipping and Apple.

Then I noticed the leader board which showed the top 25 winners from yesterday. The most that was made was $17,000.


I made $43,000! Today, I noticed my account only had the original amount in it and that I was only up .5% today. I see what stocks in theory, traded yesterday in my transaction history but for some dumb reason, I'm not getting the credit from the gains. I made $17,000 from Genco shipping ( GNK ) alone!


( Bitter? Who me? )

Oh well, the winner this week gets a pair of tickets to the World Series. And you all know how much I love baseball...............

I'm holding out for the $500,000 grand prize.


Here's where I stand today! After the royal hosing I got from the first day, I've moved from the top 42% to the top 13%!

Total Portfolio Value*
Top 13.8%
Game Rank*
Game Rank Position*
+9,018 (0.9%)
Gain/Loss, Intraday
+9,018 (0.9%)
Gain/Loss, Weekly*
+9,018 (0.9%)
Gain/Loss, Overall*

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Someone did a little more than "Think" in the "Thinking Chair".

Yeah. You're really smart.

And I really need some more Spot Shot.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Check it OUT!

THIS is why I blog!
Now I don't have to feel guilty about not writing in a traditional journal.

This book was only for 2006 and ONLY 62 pages. I better get going on 2007 which had twice as many entries!

Create your own book at

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


( In case you don't see a post from me for a while, know it's probably because I'm too busy cursing a pee/poop stain on my carpet or I'm doing laundry )

Monday, May 05, 2008

What's that thing called?

Don't you just love that my child can dress himself! It's such a shame that the only person outside of his immediate family who gets to see his mini self-dressing accomplishment every day is the afternoon bus driver.

( And stop looking at his drink already. It IS some of my diet Coke so let's just move along.....)

So, Erik pointed to my eyebrows the other day and said that he knew what they were called.

"Wow! Really? What is it?"

They're called "Eye Brownies"

Mmmmmm......... Brownies.........