Wednesday, December 31, 2008

365 project anyone??

I'm sure many of you have heard of, or even know, people who have done what is called a "365 project". The idea is basically to post one picture every day either on a blog or on a photo site (like Flickr) for every day of the year. Most people choose themes to work with..whether it be 365 photos of their children, or self portraits...or any other creative themes you can come up with. I thought the self portrait idea was a really cool one..but I hate pictures of myself and would cringe at the thought of 365 pictures of me and my horrible eyebrows:)

The next best thing for me was the idea that I ever so creatively (that was sarcasm) titled "Mother's Hand". My plan is to take a picture of my hand doing any of the eleventy-billion things that it does on a daily basis. I don't know, maybe it will be boring? But, at the same might be quite interesting if I were to actually finish the project and look back at all the stuff that my hands accomplished over the year! Who knows..maybe I will fail this project completely. My thought is that it shouldn't be hard to take a picture of my hands doing something every day..because they are ALWAYS doing something!

I was going to start on Jan 1st...but I figured, why not start early? I have done two days. I also considered not telling anyone about this until I had proven to myself that I would actually do it. I talked myself out of that quickly..realizing that I will need to know that people are holding me to this idea! I also thought it would be fun to talk a few of you into doing your very own!

Wouldn't it be cool to take all 365 pictures of my hands and turn them into one of those mosaic collages that photo places can make? We'll see if that actually happens. everyone think of what you are gonna do and be sure to share the link to the place where you are putting the pictures!

The link to my 365 blog.... Mother's Hand

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Jessalyn's Guatemala headband!

When we first moved here, 4.5 years ago, we were helped out and very warmly welcomed by a family in the Church. Since then we have gotten to know this family quite well and treasure our relationships with them. The Keniston's (not the Heath and Kann ones) have a daughter, Charlotte, who is in Guatemala serving with the Peace Corps. Hilary (Charlotte's mom) recently was able to go visit Charlotte in Guatemala.

Hilary has been known over the years to randomly call and invite our kids out to lunch...or even sometimes a movie! (this is something that she is known to do with not only my family but other families as well!) Today was Jessalyn's day with Hilary and she came back wearing this lovely headband that Hilary brought back from Guatemala. Its the prettiest thing...and super functional! Jessalyn loves it...

You can visit Charlotte's blog about her adventures in Guatemala HERE.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The ugliest member of our family...

Welcome...."Padme Joe Grievas". mom bought the kids a little fish tank..and gave them cash for some fish. I was thinking that we could at least fit 3 fish in this little tank, but the lady at the fish store suggested only one. All four kids (well, I guess its more like 3 since Owen doesn't really have a 'say' just yet) had to decided on one fish to share..and then decide to name it.

Choosing the fish was pretty easy. They decided to go with a Betta fish since they are a bit more interesting (ugly) to look at than just a regular old goldfish. Since only one fish can go in this tank it seemed like a Betta was a good option. The ride home was interesting as they tried to decide what to name it. (I know...Heath says that as soon as you name a fish they die.)

Jessalyn was insisting on "Padme". Luke was insisting on "Joe". Ethan was insisting on "Grievas". Not one of them would this fish has been given the full name of "Padme Joe Grievas".

I was assured that a Betta fish was simple to keep alive. Room temp water, small tank, two pellets a problem. Sure enough, I thought we'd killed the little guy by Friday afternoon. (we got him on Wed..Christmas Eve). He was very sluggish..seemed quite depressed and I seriously thought he was dead a few times. I did everything the lady told me to do so I was confused. I decided to research Betta fish a bit more and learned a few things that the fish lady neglected to tell me. (keeping in mind that I told her that I have never had a fish in my entire life and that I'm quite ignorant when it comes to fish care)

So yeah...Betta fish don't like lots of bubbles or current. I had the tank crankin' out the bubbles because I thought it looked cool:) I knew that Betta's will eat each other if they are put in the same I thought that the fish seeing its reflection was practically torture. I learned while doing my research that Betta's actually enjoy the company of their reflection and other Betta's as long as they are separated by something so they don't eat each other. I also learned the part about fish needed oxygen from the top of the tank. I must be an idiot because I had no idea about that. When I put the fish in the tank the water from the bag pretty much filled the tank to the top..I didn't think anything of it.

So after a few adjustments it seems that the fish is becoming accustomed to its new surroundings. The kids enjoy taking turns feeding him/her (for now) and he lives right on the counter where he gets lots of interaction:) I had no idea that fish had such personalities. He perked right up and came over to the side of the tank when I got out his food this morning to feed him. He also likes to interact with a toy dinosaur that Josh put next to the tank one day. They are buddies. He is either threatened by the camera..or is a natural born model because he was quite interested and doing lots of tricks while I had the camera out. It was kind of funny actually:) He seems to have perked up a bit..although, I've never seen a fish sleep like this little guy does. He hangs out at the bottom of the tank..just chillin'. I'm like a new mother...going over to make sure his little gill's are moving. Luke wakes up in the morning and proclaims "Hey! The fish is still alive!". I think all the kids are well aware of what could possibly happen to him..since we are all new to this fish thing.

They have all agreed that they want to pool their Christmas money and get a 'real' tank...with some more fish. I figure we will let Padme Joe be our test...if we can keep him alive then just maybe we will move on to bigger and better things:)

He's attacking his reflection...

Monday, December 22, 2008

My love/hate relationship with New England.

Its that "four seasons" thing that everyone talks about. I love the spring, I love the summer, I love the fall...and then there is winter. Winter is such a love/hate thing. I mean, really, its beautiful. There is a good feeling when its a blizzard outside and the snow is piling up while you are sitting inside at a friends house taking a nap in front of their fire. (that was a picture of me at Karens yesterday!). Its so nice in cozy know, "the fire is so delightful". If only we could live in New England during this time of year and not ever HAVE to go out in it. Of course, its nice to bundle up and make snowmen and have snowball fights but that is by choice. Its not until you actually HAVE to go outside and head somewhere like, or bringing kids to and from school, when it becomes dreadful.

Its at this point that the snow becomes nothing but a hassle. The big puffy coats, the cold car...the snow all over the place. Not to mention the shoveling! Now, I am very fortunate in this department to have a husband who is able to take care of this part. My husband doesn't have a love/hate relationship with winter..his relationship is pure hate/hate...and MORE hate. I mean, when you have to get up early to shovel this entire drivway before you head to the job that is extremely manual labor (lots of time outside or in a chilly garage), its just hard to find any love in that.

But all at the same time, this kind of living really does build character. It makes us really really appreciate the times of year when its warm. We all try hard not to complain that it is TOO hot (unless I've just walked 2 miles pushing a bunch of kids in a double stroller at the soulfest!). Its only in New England where you get a storm that brings in something like 14 inches of snow and we still only get a 2 hour delay from school the next morning. Its because we've built character...because we're New Englanders!

This was my drive to school this morning...not bad really...

...and besides where else besides New England do you get to view images like these...

I, for one, am a fan of the snow angels...especially those done after touchdowns.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Jessalyn's new glasses..

A picture for my mom..

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Have I ever mentioned how cool our youth group is??

I haven't written anything here for a long time...again, not because I don't have anything to say, but because I have way too much going on and don't know where to start as far as blogging goes. I went downstairs today to take a picture of the Youth Group Christmas tree (so that I could make it into flair:) ) and I was reminded of the fact that we have the best youth group ever. I figured that would be a great thing to blog about today!

I have found many things that I love about each one of the teens that attend our youth group...and I have found many things that I love about them as a group as well. One thing that I love about them is that they have a pretty balanced temperment. They are definitely not obnoxious (most of the time!)...but at the same time they are not "too cool for school" either. This is a group of teenagers who loves to have fun..and don't mind being rediculously silly to do it. It really doesn't take much to entertain them. It seems like as long as they have each other they are pretty happy.

One of their favorite activies is "ultimate pookie"....or any game that involves the use of "pookie". We (Josh and I) admit to not having created the idea of ultimate pookie. This game has been handed down through the previous youth leader, Heath. "Pookie" is a stuffed animal that is used to play many games. He has become sort of a mascot for the youth. In Ultimate Pookie, "Pookie" is used in the same fashion as the frisbee would be. Pookie gets thrown around, fought over and ultimately thrown into a goal. Needless to say, there has been more than one pookie. Right now he is more affectionately known as "headless pookie" because his head got ripped off. (I do believe that his head is actually being used as the dry erase marker holder).

Last week the youth group had fun decorating a Christmas Tree for the youth room. Being the super cool creative youth group that that they are they thought of using 'headless pookie' as the angel on our Christmas tree. Genius really:) Not only that..but someone put the Santa hat on pookies headless body.

I can't wait till next Thursday when we have our Christmas party and Yankee swap!!!