Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thursday's on the bench

(Sunshine) Good morning to everyone. I hope that you are all enjoying your second last week of summer vacation that is if we are going by the school calender. Mr. Sunshine is off for the next two weeks which is a pretty cool thing around here as he is not home that often (he did however have to work yesterday). He already has a list of things that will be keeping us all very busy. Yesterday myself and my little one spent the day baking cookies. My cousin's daughter is getting married and her shower is on Sunday so in the true Italian tradition they need about ten thousand cookies for this shower so we baked as many pineapple cookies as we could yesterday. For a non baker like myself I must say that I am all baked out for at least the next year or so. Let me decide if your cookies are Italian shower Worthy. Bring some over!!! Save some for the cookie exchange this Christmas! Uhh, Oh know you don't, I want fresh cookies for the Christmas exchange not ones you make in August! What about if she were to make the dough and freeze it for later baking?? Uh, once again NO. She can make the dough in November and then bake the day before the exchange but that's it! ( whisper...hey Sunshine, freeze them from now...I'll never tell...shhhhhh....) AS I TELL MY KIDS DAILY, I KNOW EVERYTHING! Calm down ladies, the extra cookies I did freeze as we are having a big party for my dad's 75 the birthday in October.

(Carolin) For us in Ontario we only have another week and half of Summer vacation :( This summer (as they all do the older I get) seemed to wiz by. I am sure it didn't help that we had so much rain, and yes it is raining again as I type. I still have 3 weeks of vacation left. I hope for sun and heat. When was the last time in August we needed a sweater at night! What has happened to hot, hazy and humid! I love this weather for sleeping, I am actually getting 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep at night!!!! Yes its a drag for swimming but looks like the husband is given up on the pool for this year. I never went in it, and the little one went in less then a handful of times because of the rain and cold July. The one week we had all that humidity she was at VBS and the pool was so full of algae it wasn't swimable. I'm thinking we are going to have the hottest fall on record, what do you think?? We also had very little pool use this summer. I wonder if we actually went in more than 10 times or so, I'm not sure but it wasn't used that much.

School is approaching and emotions are high, mainly mine as we start a new chapter with our first year of high school for my oldest daughter. My younger one has seemed to turn into a Young lady over the summer right in front of my eyes. I want so badly to be able to stop time and keep things as they are. Will I remember what they look like today in 5 or 10 years? I think that I better start taking lots and lots of pictures.
For our family too, things are changing. This will coming year will be the teenagers last year of high school. She is a senior (for our American benchers) and I am expecting some amazing maturity to happen. That is what one of her music teachers told me last year while on one of our many parent/teacher phone calls. So please pray that this past year of yuck has worked its way out of her system and our wonderful daughter can find her way back. (hasn't happened yet as she is grounded again because of her stupid choices and then attitude when called on it) (Cathy)Well, I have the older one going into his second year of highschool. He enjoys school and doesn't yet show signs of a budding social life. He is working on his assistant water safety instructor and is hoping to have a part-time job this fall. As long as it doesn't interfere with his school work. Maybe, this will keep him motivated to keep the grades up! Our second son is entering his last year of middle school. He is looking forward to seeing all of his friends again. I like the lack of routine in the summer and am not looking forward to getting back to the start of our 'fiscal year' ie: September to September. I love having no schedule and there is less arguing between me and the older one because we are so few things that we need to be on time for. During the school year I am constantly yelling about being late as we always seem to be waiting for her at the front door. I bet that my kids could have given the other late kids at school a run for their money with the amount of times that we were late last year. How embarrassing. I felt bad for my younger one as she is always ready in plenty of time. Well at least this year she will probably never be late as they are going to different schools now, if anything I think that she will always be early.

Last week we dealt with lice in my home and I am happy to say that we worked hard and persevered and we humans won the battle. It goes to show you that olive oil is good for more than just great tasting Italian dishes.
I am so glad the lice is gone, maybe now I can see you again (was to afraid last week!). But I am now concerned I will never be able to use olive oil again without think of little head bugs. That's funny, Carolin! Just think, every time you eat Italian food....... Cathy you're killing me! I really do understand how you feel but believe me if you are ever unfortunate to have to deal with it you will demystify the thought of the lice and you will no longer be thinking about it constantly, rather you will be armed with ammunition and you would with that someone would give you a medal for winning the battle.

We are going to the Poconos at the end of the week. There is much talk of some amazing outlet shopping and no taxes. I have never been and I don't really do much back to school shopping so it is more of a family road trip then anything but I hope to find some great deals. I love family road trips and so does Mr. Sunshine and the kids. You can take your time and play silly car games and just talk and laugh and have fun. I am looking forward to the car ride.
I, as well like car trips so I hope you have fun. And as my family has been on car trips with yours (remember Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump) who knows what route Mr. Sunshine will take. It's always an adventure with Mr. Sunshine, we never know what will happen next and I know that he has every second of our 2 days all planned out. He seems to enjoy all of the planning and I am happy to have someone do it for me. I don't really care what we do as long as we are all together. That's probably why we get along he can do what ever he wants (well sometimes) and I just follow suite. I have never been to the Poconos so I don't think it is the same outlet mall I am thinking of. The one I remember going to in Pen. was anchored by a Tops grocery store and it was on the way home from Florida. I remember my parents going go a mall in PA. I wonder too, if it's the same one.

Back to school shopping. The little one has had to buy school supplies for the first time this year (grade four) and is having fun organizing her new stuff in her new backpack. I just on Monday bought her black shoes and gym shoes. So beside me having her try on her uniform (and hope it all fits) we are set. The teenager and I went to Chapters and bought some notebooks (she says that is all she needs). Chapters had some cool looking ones and though they were more expensive, and she is worth it (I say as she is sleeping and not giving me any lip right now) for every Chapters 'green' product you bought you also got 250 scene points. We ended up buying eight different things so that is worth two free movies. You amaze me still with how you can find all the deals and coupons. Maybe, you should do a blog on how to save money by using coupons and points. Especially, how to keep it all organized and how to remember to use them. Or how you find out about all of them. Have you ever figured out how much you save say, for example, every week or would every month be a better determination? I will tear out a coupon and make a note on my grocery list and still forget to use it! Have you ever gone on I think this is a great idea, the blog idea. Yes, Caroline please help me too. I am so not taking advantage of all of the money saving coupons. I would prefer it even more if you just came shopping with me and had all of the coupons ready. I think that a blog about it would be amazing.

Well the first week of school for me will be spent hitting the pavement once again looking for a job. Wish me luck as I really really need one. Carolin I am so happy for you and your new adventure and I can't wait to hear all about your first week. Louise, I am so happy for you and your new job but I know how emotional it is for you at this time. Good luck to both of you and may this new path in your lives lead to bigger and better things for you and your families. Cathy I know that your vacation is coming to an end and that you have to go back to work again soon but at least it is a familiar job which you seem to enjoy doing. I would love to have a job like yours, minus all the crazy hours. ( minus the crazy people, too! )Don't be getting too excited for me yet, Sunshine. Nothing is set in stone. I sent my status report to the principal like he asked and haven't heard back from him. He has always taken his time whenever he has to respond to you hasn't he? Also, the caterer I was hoping to either buy premade food from or let me prepare in his kitchen has said thanks but no thanks they don't think my business is worth their trouble. I was afraid of that. So, at this point I am back to the phone book trying to find some one else. The husband mentioned to me the option of installing a hand washing sink in the old kitchen. I priced a bar sink and the sink and faucet is under $150.00 so I am going to call the principal and ask if that is an option. If we did that I could prepare at the school, and serve soup/chili . That sounds like a great idea. I just could not bake anything in that kitchen. Also, I think I have to break down and go get a Costco card. Which I am sure Sunshine will be glad about so I don't bug her anymore to take me to Costco. I would miss our outings but I know that it will be good for your business so good luck with everything. Remember help is only a phone call away if you need it.

I haven't blogged about the gardens lately. I can tell you two of the sunflowers have bloomed and one is over 9 ft tall. I am thinking of entering it in the Fall Fair this year. Sunflowers are my youngest's favourite flower. Maybe when we get back I will bring her buy to see your very very tall sunflowers. Though the tomatoes have a fungus on their leaves the tomatoes are abundant and starting to turn red. The little one ate the first red one on Monday. I will go check on them after the rain stops we should have some more red, as yesterday they were just about ready to be picked. The brussel sprouts are coming along. A few of the plants are producing brussels but they don't look too good. The peas are just about done maybe another week of picking and they have run their course. We pulled a few carrots a week or so ago and they tasted good but were small. So, I might wait a while longer. I am so jealous, I would really like a garden but I don't know that I am up for all of the hard work and I really don't know where I would put one.

Wow we have got to come and see this in person.

Now I feel bad as I have hardly blogged on the progress of my garden. Too busy enjoying it! I have had no luck with my carrots and as for the sugar snap peas, son number one eats them straight off the vine! No complaints from me as there is not enough growing for a meal anyways. With all of the rain, the vegetative growth is off the charts so I have spent a lot of time pruning, shaping and weeding. I would like some warm weather so the green growth can slow down a little. My herbs are awesome! I have parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. (thanks Simon and Garfunkel ). I also have cilantro and mint and chives and basil. The tomatoes look great and the Egyptian onions are starting to spread. I have never heard of Egyptian onions and I am so jealous of your garden too. My lettuce is done but it was the best tasting lettuce we have had in long time. I have just seeded some mescalin lettuce so am hoping for salad greens until fall.

I have a group of friends coming over tonight for a potluck get together. I had hoped to be in the yard, so hopefully the rain stops. I co-facilitate a ladies bible/book study on Wednesday nights at our church. Last year was our first year running the evening bible study and we had a good turnout. We run it the same schedule as the children's Pioneer club. With the hope of some of the moms coming to join us instead of heading to Walmart for the two hours. My friend KD is co-facilitating with me this year and yesterday we met with the head of ladies ministries to go over details. We are going to be studying a video series/workbook called Living Beyond Yourself by Beth Moore I really enjoy Beth's style of teaching and am looking forward to learning more from her. This series we will study is on the Fruits of the Spirit and hopefully will be educational to all types of women regardless of their background and levels of spiritual maturity. I plan to blog what I have gotten out of the weekly class with you all. Sounds great good luck.

Last night when the husband got home from work (midnight) he showed me a clipping from the newspaper about the book I reviewed a few weeks ago. Lawrence Hill's, "The Book of Negroes", seems Lion Pictures has acquired the film rights to the book and it will be made into a movie. No date when that will happen but that is very exciting for Mr. Hill I am sure. Way to go!

I took the little one to the orthodontist yesterday afternoon to get her retainer put in. She was so nervous that she has made herself sick! We went and this time we met Dr. Gord (Marks dad) and I think Dr. Gord might be better suited for the little one. He is soft spoken, calm and only speaks when he has something to say which is more her personality. Anyway, she was very nervous to the point of tears. After three dental assistants and one Doctor it was determined that the retainer that was made is not the right size and it wouldn't fit. So they had to take molds of her mouth again (which she hates) one for the bottom and three molds of the top teeth. We go back again September 8 to get the new retainer installed. So she gets to suck her thumb for a few more weeks still. For the trouble Dr. Gord gave us two free ice cream coupons and $5.00 GC for Tim Hortons! When we got home the little one was so sick she brought on an Asthma attack and has been on her puffers ever since. She slept for part of the afternoon and then was up in my bed sleeping on and off all night wheezing and coughing the whole time. She seems a little better this morning but still on her puffers. I sure hope this is not a precursor to what it is going to be like every time we go to the orthodontist. I am so sorry to hear that. I hope that she is better soon and that her next experience at the orthodontist will be a positive one. I hate taking molds of my teeth. It always makes my gag.

Enjoy the rest of your summer and stay healthy and safe.
Have a good one all! See you again on Monday, for 'Bench Talk' if not sooner!

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