Wednesday, January 21, 2009

WFMW - Computer Desk Organization

Cords, cords and more cords. They are everywhere. Sometimes I think that electronic devices are going to over take my house.

We have six people in our family. That equals lots and lots of cords connecting devices to the computer. We have two digital cameras, two cell phones, four mp3 players, one Didj and one Crammer. And they all can plug into the computer. With cords.

In order to keep them all straight, all cords have been labeled. I used a label maker and printed out whose and what the cord goes to. I found a cute little box in the $1 aisle at Target to store them all in.

Labeling our cords works for me.

Check out other WFMW tips over at Rocks in My Dryer!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Hocker

Laughter LivesThis post is part of "Laughter Lives! Tuesday" on the Riggs Family Blog. Check our their blog to read everyone else's "Laughter Lives!" posts.

Disclaimer #1: I have given this entry a title, mainly as a warning. If things gross you out, please don’t read this.

Disclaimer #2: I did get permission from all parties involved prior to sharing this story.

Set up: The timing of this event was great. It had been a stressful week. My daughter had just gotten out of surgery the Sunday before, having been there all week. She was not walking yet and her recovery was going slow. This was my chance to get out of the house for a while.

About a year ago, on a Saturday, 2 of the boys and I were driving home from a basketball game at church. (Both boys will remain unnamed to protect all involved.) We were travelling on the interstate. The older of the 2 had recently celebrated a birthday, which allowed him to ride in the front seat of my van. He had also been battling a cold and drainage.

As we were going approximately 69.5 mph, the child in the front seat cleared his throat. Hard. This produced what I like to call a hocker. He turns to me and looks with a “what do I do with it” kind of look. I quickly look for an empty cup. Nothing.

So I say “just roll down the window, and spit it out. But please don’t let it hit the side of the van.” It was winter and the van was not going to be washed anytime soon.

The window goes down, he spits, rolls the window back up. I’m assuming all is well.

I was mistaken.

A few seconds goes by and he doesn’t turn his head around.

Our conversation goes something like this:
Me: Did it come out?
Child: Yes ma’am.
Me: Did it go down the side of the van?
Child: No ma’am.
Me: I turn around and quickly check the child in the back of the van to see if he was hit by the hocker. He was clean.
Me: So is it all over the window?
Child: No ma’am, it’s not on the window?
Me: Well what’s the matter?

The boy turns around and I almost wet my pants. The hocker, which wasn’t on the side of the van, or on the window, or on the child in the back seat, was on my son’s face.

The whole hocker.

And I died. I was laughing so hard I couldn’t see. As I tried to compose, I could see through my tears that I was now traveling about 53 mph on the interstate. I contemplated pulling over, but we were only a mile from our exit. I couldn’t speak. I could barely breathe. It was hysterical.

Thank goodness this child is not afraid to laugh at himself, and he begins laughing too. When I could finally get words out – I say “Don’t touch it. I have to take a picture of it when we get home.”

We arrive home in just a few minutes and the clean child in the back seat runs in to get my camera. I took this opportunity to explain some of the laws of physics to my son, such as, you can't spit into the wind. Ever. Meanwhile, my husband comes out to see what’s going on. He doesn’t really appreciate it as much as I did.

I guess you had to be there.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

WFMW - Coupon Organizer

(I am definitely not the originator of the following idea, however, I can’t for the life of me remember where I read it. If I do, I will certainly add the link later.)

I am attempting to cut our grocery bill this year, just as many others are doing, and I’ve decided to give a more concerted effort towards using coupons. I have tried doing coupons in the past, but I’ve never felt like I’ve utilized them well. I have read article after article about people spending $3.43 on a stash of groceries that would have normally cost $4,532, but that’s just never happened to me. Oh how I hope it will, though!

My first goal in couponing was getting my coupons organized. The best idea that I ran across was storing your coupons in a 3-ring binder, using baseball card sleeves/protectors. I believe I got my sleeves at either Target or Wal-Mart, right alongside the baseball and football cards.

Each page has 9 slots and the majority of the coupons I have fit nicely with only one or two folds. I store coupons for the same product in the same sleeve, with the ones expiring soonest in front.

I thought I’d feel weird taking a notebook into the grocery store with me, but that hasn’t been the case. I have organized like coupons together, meaning all the frozen foods are together, cereals, etc. and I make sure I preview the coupons before going into the store.

With most stores doubling coupons, and sometimes even TRIPLING coupons, my next goal is stockpiling coupons so I can get more items for little or no money. I’ve asked the neighbors if they use their coupons, and they do, so I’m looking into ordering some from here.

Coupon organization works for me. To read other great tips, head over to Rocks in My Dryer!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Tales of a Cheetah-leader Mom

Saturday was the beginning of an era for me. My baby girl became a cheerleader. (Cheetah-leader is what she used to say a few months ago. So cute.) Now for my friends that have known me for a while, they are probably giggling at the fact that I am a cheerleader mom. Evil, evil giggles. Like they are “really enjoying this” type of giggles.

Here are a few things that I have learned as I have entered a new phase of my life:
  • Cheerleading squads have very interesting names. My girl’s squad (my word, don’t call it a team like I did the other day. She was very quick to correct me.) is called the Twinkle Stars. OH MY SOUL. The Twinkle Stars. I asked a friend at church when I found out the name if I looked like the mother of a Twinkle Star. I don’t think so.

  • The other names are just as good. The Cheerios and Sprinkles were the other “squads” on stage with the Twinkle Stars. My youngest son, N even thought that one squad was called the Toe Nails. No dude, it’s the Toe Touchers, not Toe Nails. (N’s having some issues with the names too. He just doesn’t get why they are naming them after food. Bless his heart.)

  • Pom poms take 4,568 hours to fluff. No exaggeration here. Pom poms are of Satan. There are even instructions on the Upward website entitled “How to Fluff a Pom”. I’m not kidding.

  • A basketball would have only taken 3 minutes to inflate by hand with a bicycle pump. Or even by mouth.

  • When you are the smallest person on your squad, your uniform is big. Even if you ordered the smallest size. Apparently other 5 yr. old cheerleaders have arms the length of my leg. Needless to say we had to roll the sleeves up on the girl’s turtleneck.

  • Also, when you are the smallest person on your squad, it adds to your cuteness.

  • Fixing hair on Saturday morning at 7:15 a.m. is a difficult process. Especially when you really need to get some type of color coordinated ribbon placed in the hair, somehow, some way, so that said hair can match every other piece of clothing on your body. I should have just ripped out some of the pom pom ribbon and tied it in the girl’s hair. (I’m kidding. I really wouldn’t have done that.)

  • After you get the hair fixed, then you absolutely cannot, under any circumstance let the child touch her hair with her pom poms. There is a lot of static produced by pom poms. (Remember their Satanic factor?) And then you gotta start all over again.

  • A small plastic megaphone can increase your child’s voice by around 53 decibels.

Despite all of my “issues” with cheerleading, my girl had a blast and did everything she was supposed to do, when she was supposed to do it. Little Miss “don’t look at me” was up on that stage having a grand ol’ time.