Sunday, May 31, 2009

project hatch: 5 weeks, 1 day (AH)

so yesterday our friends Cassie and Chris came a took 4 of our babies home with them! it was a lovely evening and from the update i've gotten they are doing well in their new home. we plan to go visit them later this week (and secretly i can't wait to see them again!). for those of you who read both Cassie's and my blog you will be on chicken overload... we are both very proud chicken mamas! -- it makes you want some, doesn't it!?-- so now we are down to 6 and are pretty sure at least 3 of the ones left are roosters who shall meet their doom as soon as i hear that first crow (or as soon as i can get them into Zach "the butcher" Dohner's hands)

and finally i have a little video of Cameron "playing" with the chicks this evening. oh man he loves to chase them, try to (unsuccessfully) pick them up, scream at them and feed them whatever is laying on the ground... this is the life of a boy w/ chickens! p.s. he's saying "here go" to the chicks when he's trying to feed them... he says that phrase all the time.... super cute!

The Biggest Loser: Speer Edition!

yesterday started a little "friendly" competition between Chris and myself. the challenge is to see who can lose 15 lbs first! i've been haphazardly trying to... or maybe it's more like thinking about trying to lose some more weight. we started out with the idea of going to 10 lbs but i thought 15 lbs would be more challenging and really be significant. i was probably 12 last time i was 123 and i'm really pumped to get there again! this is the perfect motivation to get my butt in gear!!

I'll spare you photos of Chris's beer belly and my massive butt.... just the numbers...

Starting Weight: 160
Target Weight: 145

Starting Weight: 138
Target Weight: 123

i wish i could tell you that the winner receives $100,000 BUT this is not the case so we've each picked a prize that fits us. once this

Chris-- three days kid free. this may or may not be entire days but he can come and go as he pleases as i'll be "on duty" all day.

Adia-- one day kid free (being kid free isn't as much of a reward for me as it is for Chris i guess) and two 30 minute massages!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

project hatch: week 5 (AH)

last night our eleven ten chicks spent there first night in their finished permanent chicken coop! this was also the first night w/o a heat lamp and i'm happy to say that i woke up to all 10 chicks alive and well. last i checked they still hadn't figured out how to get up into their nesting area. i had a inclined board for them to climb up at first but they kept slipping off of it so i made them some make shift stairs to hop up until they are a little bigger. but like i said so far they haven't used it... maybe tonight, i think it'll be much warmer in there than on the ground.

a few of them might be leaving us as soon as this weekend. my friends Cassie & Chris built a chicken coop in their Camden City backyard and are hoping for 4 hens. hopefully their aren't too many roosters in this bunch so we can accommodate everyone. i'll be sad to see them go but i know they'll be in good hands and life will be much easier when we only have 3 chickens to take care of!
for even more pictures of the final product (and everything before that) click here.


this week included Mayden's last day of her first year in preschool. what a wonderful year it was! besides our house being more sick than normal during the winter months (which i attribute to her more than normal contact w/ other kids this winter) it was a great experience. we've been really happy with the school and especially her teachers. this preschool we chose is a coop so that means i work as a helper in the class periodically and am part of a committee. it was wonderful to be a part of her class every few months... i looked forward to those days most as i wasn't able to be as involved as i would have liked to be or even be the one to take her to school or pick her up due to my work schedule. next year i hope to only be working part time so that will change. speaking of next year, she's all signed up where she'll attend 3 days a week instead of the 2 days this year.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

wordless wednesday

more on Anne Lamott

if you're interested here's a long great interview with Anne Lamott

book #9 of 2009

Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith
written by Anne Lamott

i love Anne Lamott! especially her book Operating Instructions. i read this book in between kids and can't believe how accurate her description of that first (awful & wonderful) year of a babies life is. oh and she's funny, i mean really funny! in fact i think i'm due to read it again.

okay but back to the book i just read... Grace (Eventually). While not my favorite Anne Lamott book, still a real page turner. i don't understand Anne and maybe that's why i'm drawn to her. how can someone so progressive be tied to a religion that is so not. she is amazingly frank about life and she just doesn't seem to fit into the box called Christianity. i appreciate her thoughts as i try to sort out my spirituality.

i'd really love to hear a conversation between her & Bill Maher... now that would be interesting!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend!

our long weekend included:

eating lunch in fun places

kids constantly in & out of the pool

watching kids constantly in & out of the pool

dirty looks at the mention of coming inside for bed

starting a new book (by starting i mean reading the first two sentences)

digging in dirt for worms

planting the garden (tomato seeds in the ground, next to the already harvested spinach)
long mid-day naps

tall glasses of ice cold water

Memorial Day marching

parade watching

and of course... plenty of hotdogs & hamburgers!


look what our neighbor Collin got this weekend!! the kids had a blast playing in the pirate ship as you can see in the video below...

turns out it's even more fun with water in it!!

baby humans

how is it possible that a human can go
from this:

to this:

in only one year??!?! amazing!

Friday, May 22, 2009

mayden says

"You like naps, Camo. It helps get the energy out of your brain."

Thursday, May 21, 2009

project hatch: week 4 (AH)

our 11 little chickies will be 4 weeks old on Saturday! they've gotten really big in that short amount of time, so big in fact that we've had to move them out of the two boxes i had them in. it was getting cramped and becoming a pain to clean them everyday. so we moved them all outside into the kid's playhouse! it's perfect and i'm not sure why i didn't think of this before... it's not 100% predator proof so i worry about them a little at night but i did my best to secure the house. even though they are pretty well feathered it still gets pretty cold at night so i put the heat lamp in there at night just in case.

i am sad to report that yesterday we had one chick fly the coop... so now we're down to 10 chickies. we looked everywhere for him but couldn't find him before nightfall. like i said it's still cold at night so i don't have much hope that he'll magically appear today. i hope it was a rooster :o)

the real (predator proof) chicken coop is close to being finished! they just need to paint it, add one more door & put the wire on. we'll probably paint it today or tomorrow so hopefully within the week our chicks should have a real home!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

wordless wednesday

this is the candy sushi Mayden helped me make for the top of Chris's birthday cake! he started the day with a few sushi related gifts, a sushi cake and ended with a FANTASTIC sushi dinner!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cameron says

a few new words:

book - said very clearly
peebis - penis
stuck - he uses this word perfectly... like when he's stuck
truck - his word for ALL motor vehicles
fu@k - i think this might just be a slip when trying to say 'stuck' or 'truck' BUT he says it alllll the time and it's a little embarrassing (especially in church)
gook (pronounced like book, but with a G) - this is the new buzz word. everything is gook. i'm not sure what it is but i'm pretty sure if you're labeled 'gook' it's not a good thing!

I need a section called 'Cameron does'.... yes that's a wall... 

Friday, May 15, 2009

book #8 of 2009

The Natural Child

a book after my own heart! filled with "top 10" lists as well as lots of other good thoughts, this was an easy read that helped confirm what i already knew... children are people. people who deserve time, respect, love and empathy. the author goes from infant care through schooling with specifics on how to be a more conscious parent.

she ends with a challenge to advocate on behalf of abused children. sounds easy enough? well, she suggests doing this at say: Wal-Mart (or the public place of your choice) where you may encounter a stranger being too harsh with a child. which crosses all sorts of American taboos... but could be just the intervention that child (or parent) needs. we've all seen it and probably ignored it but is that the right thing to do? i come from the place where you "live and let live" but after reading that last chapter this is something i need to think more deeply about if i want to call myself a true child advocate (and i do)

because we are seriously considering homeschooling our children (using the unschooling method) my favorite chapter was on learning. i just loved this thought... "children learn by asking questions, not answering them". through the whole chapter she really nailed it on the head exactly why we want to homeschool!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

your child is 47 months old!

this was the title of an email i received today from a no-doubt automated advertisement of some sort but it brings up a good question. at what point do we stop using months (or dare i say weeks) for our children's age? those first few weeks are full of so many changes that it makes sense to say "she's 3 weeks old" but really, you can't go around saying "she's 19 weeks old today" and that first year (or two) is full of milestones & every month really counts so i say you're okay up to 2 years, although i find that after 18 months no one really cares so i just say "almost 2" in most cases. next you have the 1/2 years. 1/2 years are important in the early part of childhood but i'm not sure saying your kid is 24 and a 1/2 is okay so it's gotta stop somewhere!

if i were you i'd:
  • stop saying weeks after 8 weeks-- she's now 2 months old
  • stop saying months after 19 months old-- she's now "almost 2" OR "will be 2 in June"
  • stop saying years & a 1/2 after 5 -- she's now 6 (of course the kid will probably throw the 1/2 in there as they anxiously anticipate growing older.... that stops at 29!)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Friday, May 8, 2009

project hatch: week 2 (AH)

it seems like the chicks (who are rapidly becoming much less chick-like by the day) have been around forever, it's hard to believe it's only been 2 weeks! work has begun on the outside chicken coop. it's a good thing because i'm not sure how much longer they will fit into the boxes we have inside for them. their fuzziness is being replaced w/ feathers... sad.

we'll have to wait until week 5 to see who starts crowing and once that happens we'll be able to pick which ones we'll keep and which ones we'll need to get rid of. again there are a few more pictures here.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

24 questions

#1. What’s your current obsession?

#2. If you could do any job in the world and know you’d be 100% successful, what would it be?
nurse -- more specifically, a labor & delivery nurse OR a midwife

#3. What are you wearing today?
jeans & randomly selected shirt

#4. Why is today special?
because i get to go to school w/ Mayden today (mother's day tea party!)

#5. What would you like to learn to do?
#6. What’s for dinner tonight?
your guess is as good as mine!

#7. What’s the last thing you bought?
a Thomas Train pillowcase & kid size sling from

#8. What are you listening to right now?
refer to question #1... i can't stop!

#9. What’s your most challenging goal?
trying to maintain balance between work & home life

#10. What was the last book you read?
Silver by Norma Fox Mazer (this was one of my favorite books i read as a teen)

#11. If you could have your house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere, where would it be?
i'd live ANYWHERE for that deal!!

#12. What is your favorite vacation spot?
O.C., NJ

#13. What would you like to have in your hands right now?

#14. What would you like to get rid of?
a few chicks!

#15. If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Barnes & Noble (w/o kids)

#16. What super power would you like to possess?
invisibility... i think that could come in real handy!

#17. What are you most looking forward to this week?
my birthday/mother's day (yes, on the same day this year!)

#18. What is your dream job?
staying home w/ my kids full time while unschooling them (and myself)

#19. If you had $150---what would you spend it on?

#20. What do you find annoying?

#21. Describe your personal style.

#22. Whose closet you would want to raid?
Kate Winslet

#23. What are you most proud of?
those two kids of mine!

#24. What is your typical morning routine?
weekday= wake up at 5:50, leave house at 6:10, arrive at work by 6:30, drink coffee, play feed, & take care of kids till lunch.

weekend= wake up at 8 (or whenever my kids wake up), get kids up, play, feed & take care of kids till lunch.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

book #7 of 2009


this book was one of my favorites when i was a teen. it's been a really long time since i've read it but back in the day i read it a lot. i couldn't believe how fast it all came back to me as i was reading it. i still remembered most of the plot, even the details. anyway it was fun to read this again, i might throw in a few more books i used to read as a kid to this years reading list.

wordless wednesday

probably too much cuteness for one picture... sorry!

Monday, May 4, 2009

oh happy day!

my husband is a genius! he made the decision to bless me with a night of listening to my new favorite artist live in celebration of our anniversary (7 years today!) and my upcoming birthday! i found out about this date late last week and i've been in high anticipation of the evening... it did not disappoint!! this was the most diverse concert i've been to. we were next to a rowdy bunch of 50 something year olds and the racial diversity was beautiful too. while Chris was definitely in the minority there were dedicated male fans as well... Adele is clearly for everyone :o) she did seem shy and uncomfortable being the center of so much attention but it was really endearing. she spent the night waving at everyone, it was really sweet. but the best part... her voice, it was flawless and sounded exactly the same live as recorded, amazing! it's hard to believe she's only 21-- or will be in a few days-- she's just warming up and i can't wait to see where she goes from here.

Friday, May 1, 2009

gearing up for Adele

Chris surprised me this week by telling me our anniversary plans for this year. he bought us tickets to see Adele in concert on Sunday. i am in love with this woman's music so needless to say i'm very excited!! so tonight while Chris was at school the kids and i warmed up for Sunday's show.