Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Today’s thankful: Last day of kindergarten

I HATE the kindergarten year. It isn’t that I mind sending my kids to school, because I don’t. What I detest is sending a five-year-old to school for two and a half hours each day. What a waste of everyone’s time. Granted, many kindergarteners (including Youngest) are not ready for a full day of learning, but I am all for just letting them skip the big K and start first grade when they are six. It was good enough for me. Back in the way back long ago, kindergarten was more like a daycare facility which included a little bit of preschool learning. Remember that? At any rate, after my third stent of kindergarten hell, I am free at last, free at last.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Today’s thankful: Moody’s Butcher Shop

Everyone who knows me has had to hear me go on and on about Moody’s Butcher Shop in Avon. I have been completely converted back to butcher shop (i.e. humanely raised) meat to the point I rarely eat dinner out anymore. So a few weeks ago, I called to place an order and the guy who answered the phone said, “Hi, Amy” instead of saying the store name. I felt a little embarrassed at having been in the store so many times that they know me, but at the same time, it was kind of like everyone shout “Norm!” when I walked into my favorite bar. 
Anyway, my thankful today comes in two parts. I had ordered my meat for the Memorial Day picnic at my dad’s house and planned to pick it up today. Due to a variety of circumstances, but mostly my being brain dead, I pulled into Moody's parking lot at 4:10. The closed sign was on the door, but their cars were still there. I ran to the door. Thankfully, the manager smiled and ran to let me in. So my two parts are that I am so thankful to have Moody’s so close. The other part of the thankful is that they are not a corporation and were therefore happy to provide the extra service by letting me in when I was clearly past the deadline. I don’t know what I was going to feed 24 people tomorrow if they hadn’t opened for me.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Today’s thankful: Goodwill stores

When I was a tween, garage sales weren’t very popular and my family didn’t have much money, so mom made most of our clothes. Sometimes, though, we would hit the Goodwill store. We called it junkin’, which made it seem more like an adventure and less icky. When I asked my mom what I should say if people at school asked where I got a particular clothing item, she said, “just tell them your mom got it for you.” That answer worked for me, and I happily wore a lot of Goodwill clothes. As a result of my upbringing, I really do enjoy shopping at the Goodwill. So I am slightly thankful for the Goodwill stores from a consumer standpoint. The thing about Goodwill stores that I am very thankful for is that they provide an outlet for me to get rid of things I no longer need without throwing them in the landfill. Yay! As I have been in declutter mode since I joined, I have made several trips to the GW. Not only is my house getting cleaner, but I also get to have the warm fuzzies when I donate. Truly, I can’t find a downside.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Today’s thankful: I got home before the storms

It is supposed to rain good and hard today. There are storm and tornado watches until later tonight. I love a good storm, but hate to be out in it. After school as I was sitting on my sister’s front porch, it started to get dark and the wind picked up. I was thinking I would end up having to run into the house through a torrential downpour, but I MADE IT! Happy dance!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Today’s thankful: Kool-Aid

Okay, first, let me just point out that I almost always type Kook-Aid, so if one slips in, I apologize. Yes, I am thankful for Kool-Aid. I don’t drink the stuff, because it is just too sweet, but my kids and Spouse seem to really enjoy it. I only use ¾ cup of sugar, so it isn’t quite as gross as it could be. And it is cheap. Super cheap. And easy to make. A former friend taught me that you don’t even have to stir it if you use the spray nozzle on the sink to fill the container. That swirling motion is enough to get it all dissolved. Sweet.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Today’s thankful: Stoplights

We were smack in the middle of a glorious Midwestern day today when I was on my way to the office. I had the windows in the car down to catch the breeze, which was just enough to keep me cooled off but not so much to wreck my hair. The sky was almost crayon blue with little puffy white clouds scattered around. Needless to say, I did NOT want to be stuck in the house or office. Since I live in the suburbs, traffic is almost non-existent on a weekday midmorning and the stoplights are pretty far between. I found myself actually being thankful every time I got stopped at a light because I could hear the birds chirping when the car came to a stop. Those lights gave me an opportunity to stop and hear the birds and enjoy the splendor of this day. It isn’t exactly stopping to smell the roses, but is a pretty darn good substitute.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Today’s thankful: My crockpot and the fact that I actually used it

We had a fundraising event for the Avon Marching Black & Gold’s trip to the Tournament of Roses parade in January. It was a showcase of the many bands, classes and ensembles in the music program. Because my Middlest is such a busy girl, we were there from noon until six. Knowing that we would be gone most of the day, and expecting to be exhausted when we got home, I tossed some chicken in the crockpot before I left. Did I have a plan for said chicken you ask? No, I did not. I just threw it in with the basics: a little chicken stock, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onions and some celery. By the time I got home, a form had planned. I added green beans and pasta alfredo. Voila! 20 minutes and dinner was ready. I love my crockpot, and am thankful that I actually thought to use it today.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Today’s thankful: My friend’s referral to

A few days ago my thankful was about a clean dishwasher. My friend, Fifi, directed me to, saying it had changed her life. For today’s history lesson, you need to know that I have always been a really bad housekeeper. I wanted a clean house and I do know how to clean, but it never reached the top of my priority list. For several years, I have been struggling with self-esteem issues surrounding my unclean house. It isn’t board of health shut you down dirty, but I am so NOT a clean freak.

A few months ago, after watching several episodes of “Hoarders” on TLC, it occurred to me that I might be a hoarder. A lot of self-evaluation later, I decided that I am not a hoarder, but am probably just too lazy to do housework. I don’t keep needless things. Anyway, I have been trying to declutter and clean, but keep getting sidetracked. Enter

This website is dedicated to people like me who are a little bit too whatever to clean their house alone. It was like this site was made for me personally. I love it. The idea behind the whole thing is having a tiny daily routine with a daily e-mail of two tasks which will take no more than 15 minutes each. By focusing on a zone of the house each week, it ends up all being clean. This program just might work for me. Cross your fingers!

Anyway, I am truly thankful that Fifi knows me well enough to suggest this site. One item of note, when my big girls were little, I consciously decided not to clean much, because when I cleaned and they messed it up, I got mad. I didn’t want to spend their childhoods being a witch, so I stopped cleaning. The site keeps reminding members that perfection isn’t the goal, but progress is. Like the Flylady says, small baby steps.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Today’s thankful: A spouse to share yard work with

When I got home from working, picking up Tiny Person and shopping with my sister, I cut the grass in the front yard. Then I was sweaty and tired, so I came in and cooked dinner. Then Spouse came home, ate dinner, and headed to the backyard to do his half of the yard work. Yay, Spouse!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Today’s thankful: An empty dishwasher

When I got home from work today and started to cook dinner, I decided to do a load of dishes while I was in the kitchen. I had forgotten that I emptied it earlier, so it was a very happy surprise when I opened it to find it empty. Happy dance! I enjoyed that little surprise so much that I am going to empty it tonight before bed so it can happen again tomorrow.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Today’s thankful: MY nook works

My sister and I each got a Barnes & Noble nook two Christmases ago when they came out. I have loved mine, but my sister got a lemon. From not downloading books, to the page advance key breaking within a few months, to the electronic library not working properly, she has had nothing but trouble with her nook. She has spent hours on the phone with customer support, only to be told repeatedly that the problem is with their server and not her nook. She has taken it into the local store many times, only to be told that the store personnel can’t help her, and they call the customer service line for her. On our most recent trip to Barnes & Noble to complain about her nook not working, she was assured that her problems were because of their server. When she suggested that she had a lemon and would like a replacement, they told her the problem wasn’t her nook and that there was nothing they could do. Awesome.
What is a girl to do? Well, we have purchased and encouraged our friends to choose the Kindle when searching for an ereader. Our Kindle friends have been very satisfied. So while I have a nook that works, I feel thankful and pretty sure that I just got lucky. So would I recommend a nook? Absolutely not. Will I buy another one when this one dies? Absolutely not. Will I invest in a Kindle next time? Absolutely.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Today’s thankful: I am not as stupid as Youngest believes me to be

We all know that Youngest thinks I am an idiot. If there had been any doubt, she removed it last night. We were at Middlest’s induction into the high school National Honor Society. During the ceremony, they asked all of the new inductees, current high school members and parents who were members to stand and take the oath. I stood and started to participate, when Youngest got a shocked look on her face and said, loudly, “*gasp* Why are YOU standing up?” I really hate to consider what she will think of me when she gets to be a teenager.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Today’s thankful: Coffee time with my sister

In these times of busy, busy, busy, I am thankful that my sister and I can find a half an hour a few days a week to have coffee and chitty chat. I enjoy coffee and chitty chat with my friends, but my sister has known me my whole life, and that bond makes our time so much better.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Today’s thankful: I am not a dude

You might think since Mother’s Day was yesterday and I had a wonderful day with my daughters that my reason for being thankful I am not a dude is because I am a mom. You would be wrong. The reason today for my thankfulness at not being a guy is the movie “Jackass 3-D” which I viewed yesterday at the insistence of Eldest. Now, I will not deny laughing so hard I cried at both the original and second Jackass movies, but I didn’t really want to see the third one. It had a few make me laugh moments, but for the most part, the original jackasses have gotten older and now have hired younger idiot guys to do the really painful stuff. I commend the original guys on stepping into adulthood. It had to happen eventually, but it isn’t as fun to watch boys who are not besties do stupid guy stuff.
As I revisited the movie in my mind, it occurred to me that, while I thoroughly enjoy watching guys do stupid guy stuff, I am so glad that I am not a guy. I think it is due to my double X chromosomal makeup that I have never willingly eaten anything that would make me puke. I also have never performed an act knowing that the end result would be my possibly excruciating pain. So today’s thankful is that I enjoy watching them, but am so very glad I am not a dude.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Today’s thankful: I didn’t have to chaperone a zoo field trip for kindergarten

I dropped Youngest off this morning for an all-day field trip to the Indianapolis Zoo. It shames me a little to admit that I dragged my feet turning in the permission/volunteer form, but I am so glad that I did. See, the thing I have learned about the early grades is that most of the parents are gung ho to help, so there are always plenty of volunteers. By the time the kids hit fifth grade or so, that enthusiasm drops dramatically and then you see the same 15 parents doing all of the work for every event.
Anyway, it is no secret that I don’t really like small children. I love my own, and I like clean, smart, well-behaved children, but they tend to be few and far between. So when the opportunity arose to chaperone a kindergarten trip to the zoo, I didn’t want to be first in line. Thankfully, by the time I volunteered, there were plenty of people in line ahead of me.
So today’s thankful is that I didn’t have to go to the zoo as a chaperone of five-year-old children. I am rationalizing my actions by reminding myself that in a few years I will be on duty for all of the trips and parties because there won’t be anyone else available – except 14 of my new best friends.