Rawlins Family

Rawlins Family

Monday, October 31, 2011

Turns out...

Turns out that once you get your house back after not having it for two months, you don't really care that much about the cracks. They're almost pretty. It's kind of like stretch marks. I hate them at first, then ignore them and hope they go away, then I almost appreciate them for what they gave me. So while I don't really APPRECIATE the 1000 stress cracks all over my ceiling/drywall, I appreciate that I have a house that keeps me safe, secure and warm/dry/cool. Those cracks remind me that there are so many people out there struggling with problems so immense and soul-draining. House problems, while annoying and money-sucking, are NOT soul-draining. My house may be kind of broken, but my family is intact and my happiness is whole.

So it's time to put the Trenchy Talk to bed. I'm sure I'll post lots of "after" pics (once I discover my camera cord). I know I sure as heck am going to post pictures of my kids sitting right in the middle of our living room tonight. But I'm officially OVER IT. Trenchy can't keep me down!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Botox for Trenchy

Apparently, Trenchy's new young wife - whose holes are all filled in and firm, thankyouverymuch - is messing with his mind. Because he's started to pay attention to all of his deep lines and wrinkles, crevices and chasms. Today Trenchy is taking the long-anticipated plunge and getting trench botox. Also known as FILL DIRT AND CONCRETE!
Good riddance, Trenchy.

p.s. While I'm really, really excited to be in the final stages of Project Plumbing/Foundation, I also have been taking a good look around my house, and I'm feeling a little bummed out about having to spend the next six months staring at the cracks and sagging ceiling that will be left behind. Why is that? What is wrong with me? I just spent two months living in near-third-world living conditions and I'm going to complain about some cracks? Sigh. I just really want to fast forward to my new floors, my new ceiling, my new drywall, etc. And of course we still have a master bath remodel coming, and we've been talking about doing a kitchen reno, too. New countertops, new cabinet doors, new sink. And while I'm excited I just want it done yesterday.
Bah. Way to suck the excitement out of the day, Anna. (But I still blame you, Trenchy.)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Trenchy takes a wife

If you're wondering, we've been kicked out of the house again while the foundation guys get to work...work that includes ripping up YET ANOTHER room of my house. Last Friday we had to give up our master bedroom/bathroom so they could pull up the carpet and install interior piers. This means digging more holes in the middle of our house. So far there are three. So, if you're counting, we are living in two bedrooms, one bathroom and one kitchen. And there are six of us. Yes, that math seems odd to me as well.

And while I am annoyed to be living in such circumstances, I can finally see the light at the end of (this) tunnel. Monday the plumbers come back to fill in Trenchy and he will be no more. Wednesday Melton the Carpet Guy comes back to lay our carpet, and we'll have it cleaned. Thursday I will make my cleaning appliances and a few boxes of Mr. Clean magic erasers wish they had never been born.

So, for now I'm feeling good. Like, really good. Talk to me in another six months when it's time to PULL DOWN OUR LIVING ROOM CEILING AND REHANG IT. (and put in new floors, and patch up the drywall, and repaint, and, and, and...)

There's no place like home. Right Dorothy?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

What are the odds?

Today was one of those Good Mom Days. You know, those days where you feel like you woke up, looked at all of the things vying to get onto the To Do list, prioritized and got the most important stuff done. One of those days that makes you look in the mirror and say, "I just knew you had it in you." I did what I needed to do, I did what my kids needed me to do, I did what my house needed me to do. Did I get EVERYTHING done? No, but I think I spread myself evenly enough that I still have some leftover (because it's 4:30, which, to most mommies, is like mile 22 of the Boston Marathon. That is to say, it's about half-way there.) for whatever comes next.

Today we got new games like Zingo and Guess Who, and I sat down with Sophia right away and played them for over an hour. Zingo is a hoot, if you're wondering.

Today we folded laundry while listening to Fictionist and Justin Bieber. It makes the time fly to watch Sophia twirl and spin while I sniff my whites. (I use Biz bleach on my whites and it smells super good - I'm obsessed).

Today we hit up the library and I got my movies back ON TIME. I got a couple old issues of Real Simple and a stroller-full of Halloween books for the kiddies. Sophia only wanted to get back to Zingo, but managed to pick out a Disney Princess magazine.

Today I sat with Cameron and pointed to every. word. as he painstakingly made his way through his assigned reading. I wish they would let him pick his own books, but I know he needs this push.

Today I tried to sit with Haley and drowsily read The Napping House...until Haley informed me in no uncertain terms that she was neither drowsy or napping, and scooted off my lap.

And that made me wonder. What are the odds I'm going to have to remind my children of these Good Mom Days? Will there be enough of them in their little memory banks that they'll never need reminding? Will the GMDs just get shuffled in with the Distracted Mom Days, or the Hormonal Mom Days, or the House Cleaning Ninja Mom Days? I sure hope not. I hope these moments are the ones that stick out to them as they think back through time.

And if not, I'm okay with reminding them.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Covering his bases

"...and please bless the sheep and other baby animals that are being born tonight, or another week, or another month, or another year."

-Cameron, in his bedtime prayer.

Saturday, October 08, 2011

RawlTown Police Blotter

On 10/08/2011 at approximately 6:59PM, parents responded to a disturbance call outside of their bedroom window, approximately in the location of the deck. During the initial follow-up, parents processed the scene and identified an individual that had been involved in the suspected releasing of a balloon belonging to the victim, Miles R.

Prior to the release of the balloon, Miles R could be heard screaming, "NO! DON'T DO IT!" Additionally, it was said that at one point he rushed into the bedroom of his parents and claimed that "He's going to do it! He's going to let it go!" The female parent involved was initially concerned before being persuaded by the male parent that the perpetrator should be "left alone". Shortly after that the balloon was said to have been released, proving that the female parent shouldn't have listened to the male parent.

Due to the nature of the victim’s emotional injuries, the Brutal Teasing / Assault unit was contacted and responded to assist with the continuing investigation.
These efforts lead to the early bedtime and forced purchase of new balloon by the suspect involved and he is identified as:
Cameron R
8 Yr Old Male of RawlTown USA.

Any persons with information regarding the location of the blue balloon, said to have "a face on it, and some Chinese stuff" is asked to contact the department immediately.


Thursday, October 06, 2011

Why can't life be more like kindergarten?

I love when progress reports come home from kindergarten. The grading system there is all kinds of awesome. Our school gives out "e"s, "s"s, and all manner of other letters, signifying various levels of trying. I think the general idea is to lift kids up and show them support while they're in the process of learning. They wait a whole year before sending papers home with 60% written in bold, red letters across the front. (Though, those are often peppered with phrases like, "nice try!" and "showing improvement!")

What would life be like if, instead of always feeling beaten down by the stuff I'm not getting JUST RIGHT, I got points for effort?

Like, how great would it be to get a report that said:

Laundry - A for almost there. As in, we noticed that, while you didn't get the laundry COMPLETED, per se, you certainly showed good intent by leaving the laundry basket in the living room...so close! Better luck next time!

Dinner - W for well done. As in, you probably didn't mean for the pasta to be this mushy and the steak to be this tough, but we know you had to leave the kitchen when you heard your kids trying to break each other's bones in the other room, so we'll give you another shot.

Childcare - L for living. As in, your kids are still alive today, even though you neglected to tell the school nurse Miles would need a breathing treatment, and they haven't had vitamins in several days because they keep reminding you AFTER you brush their teeth and there is no way in h-e-doublehockeysticks you are brushing their teeth TWICE before bed. But we know you love them, even if their clothes are covered in foodstuffs and they need baths.

Husband - C for at least you're cute. As in, we haven't had a date night in awhile, and you're usually pretty, ahem, tired at the end of the day, and your shirt has snot on the shoulder. But from the neck up you're not horrible to look at, so at least there's that.

What kinds of grades would you like to get??

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Out of the mouths of babes

The other night, during scripture time, Miles was telling us stories about Jesus' life. It's so funny how kids think about things. He said, "A man had blonde and asked Jesus to take it away. So he spit in the dirt and made mud and put it on his eyes and that taked away the blonde!"

Now, if we could figure out what to do about the gray?

And I just want to give a shout-out to my kids' Primary (Sunday School for little kids) teachers. They are all amazing. We teach our children out of the scriptures each night, and I know they're listening - even when they're rolling around on the floor or punching each other. But there are times when my kids will, completely out of the blue, tell me stories from the Scriptures that I don't remember teaching them. Or at least giving details beyond what I know I've taught them. And I'm so grateful. So thank you, thank you, thank you. I don't think teachers hear it enough, but they are literally changing the lives of the kids they teach. Yay for teachers!

Saturday, October 01, 2011

By Request: Caramel Pecan Conference Rolls

I'm nothing if not a people pleaser, so without further ado, I give you:

Caramel Pecan Conference Rolls

  • 1 C. + 3 T. water
  • 1/4 C. butter or shortening
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/4 C. sugar,
  • 1 pkg. yeast
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 3 1/4 - 3 3/4 C. flour
  • 1/3 instant powdered milk

In microwave, heat water and butter until half melted. Blend in salt, sugar, powdered milk and 1 C. flour. Be sure mixture is not too hot before proceeding. Add yeast, stir. Blend in egg. Stir in enough flour to form a soft dough. Turn out on a lightly floured surface and kneed in enough flour to keep dough from being sticky. But remember - less is better than more. Place dough in a greased bowl and allow to rise until doubled in bulk. After dough is done rising roll it out into a large rectangle - about 11X15.

On the dough, spread softened butter over the whole surface, leaving a 1" strip along one long side unbuttered. Over the butter sprinkle brown sugar to your hearts' content (or malcontent, as it were). Roll dough toward the UNBUTTERED side so you have a long skinny roll. Rub the unbuttered strip of dough with a little water and pinch the dough together to seal it.

(Am I making sense?)

In a sauce pan melt 1/2 C. butter, 1 C. brown sugar, 2 T. light corn syrup over medium heat until blended. Remove and spread in the bottom of a greased 9X13 casserole dish. If desired, sprinkle some chopped pecans over the caramel.

Cut the long dough roll into about 15 slices (I always end up with 16 - always) and place in the casserole dish over the caramel mixture.

Bake at 375 for 15 - 20 minutes. I find I even need up to 30 minutes to keep the middle rolls from being too doughy. If I need extra time and the tops are getting pretty brown, I just throw a sheet of aluminum foil loosely over the top of the dish and let it keep baking.

When the rolls are done, remove from oven and allow them to sit on the counter for a few minutes before inverting on a serving dish. Remove the casserole pan from over the rolls.


From my arteries to yours, happy hardening!