Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Snow Is Comin'! The Snow Is Comin'!, TToT week 29

Of all the weeks of the year, this is one of my favorites.  The kids are home.  There's no "pressure" to get anything done.  There's no trip to Ohio to pack and plan for.  And what sets it apart from other breaks is the fact that COW is home more often than usual.

COW is not one to take a day off of work to just be at home.  In fact, in almost 20 years of marriage, he has NEVER taken a day off of work to just be at home.  He saves his days off for times when we can or have to go somewhere.

This week, especially with New Years being on a Wednesday, we get to see him more.  The office was closed Wednesday, and he surprised us by coming home early Thursday and Friday.  Apparently, no one else was at work, so he couldn't get a whole lot done.

So, it's been a great week.  My thankful list this week is easy.

1. I am thankful that when people see funny things, they think of me.  Whether it is by posting it on my facebook page or sending me a note or sending me the actual funny thing, I'm so glad to get the surprise laughs every now and again.  This week, I received a birthday/Christmas present from my friend in Japan.  I actually got to talk with her, too, and she explained the inclusion of these...


Panda shorts.

She said that when she saw them, she had to buy them for someone.  I was the first person who came to mind.  I haven't tried them on yet, but I am looking forward to wearing them on cold, cold days when I have to go watch a soccer game.

I will be wearing them under my long pants, so don't get too excited to see a photo of me wearing them.  Ain't gonna happen.

Probably. This is a blog about our ridiculousness after all.  :)

2.  I am thankful for Buttercup.  This time last year, I would not have said that.  She was a pain in everyone's rear end.  We'll leave the story at that for now.

These days, she is happy and back to normal.  She is pleasant almost all the time.  (She is a teenage girl after all.)  She is very willing to help out.  She even understands and doesn't pitch a fit when I won't let her do certain things with her friends.

This week in particular, she has been wonderful.  On the two hour drive to and from our game day in Kentucky, she read books and chatted with the little boys until they fell asleep.  She made cookies with Cuckoo.  She asked Turken to play cards with her when she saw he was getting bored.

The girl is a peach.

3.  I am thankful for Starbuck's gift cards.  95% of all gift cards given to teachers are Starbuck's gift cards.  (I totally made up that statistic, but based on what I've received, it's probably true.)  I only work 2 hours each week, and I still received $30 in gift cards from our generous parents.  Normally, I give them to people I know who actually drink coffee.  This time, Giant and I had some time to kill, and I was freezing cold, so we went to Starbucks for some hot chocolate.  There was a stack of games on a shelf, so the two of us had a 45 minute date, drinking hot chocolate and playing Battleship.  It was lovely.  I still have plenty more on the cards, so I'm thinking I'll be taking other kids on these special, free dates.

4.  I am thankful I live when I do.  We have already had lots of snow this winter, but the worst is yet to come.  We are supposed to get up to 12 inches of snow in the next 36 hours.  And then, the temps will drop to -12.  With a wind chill of -30.  We are set to live through the coldest temperatures ever recorded.

I'm so glad I don't live in a time where people had to use the outhouse, relied on fires for heat, and rode horses to get places.

5.   I am thankful for my children's desire for me to feel good about myself.  I had on my new fuzzy pink slippers (Thanks COW!) but not my robe, as I had been outside and taken it off.  Cuckoo noticed and said, "If you put your robe on with your slippers, you'd be beautiful."  There are so many things I could retort, but we'll just leave it at that and be thankful.

6.  I am thankful that Turken is on the fast road to being a full-on reader.  I love how reading just clicks with kids.  Each kid has that moment, which is different for each child, but when it happens, it's awesome.  Turken received a bookstore gift card for Christmas and picked out four "level 2" books yesterday.  This was breakfast time this morning:



Yes, it's even better when they choose to read to a younger sibling.

7.  I am thankful that COW used his extra time off to go out and buy a snowblower yesterday.  We already have 6 inches of snow sitting on our driveway causing problems.  With another 12, we'd be stuck but good! We don't have a vehicle on which we can attach a plow, and shoveling a 1/3 of a mile drive is ridiculous.  This morning, the kids were excited to see Daddy's new toy in action...


from inside the house.


OK, I'm in a hurry to go, so I'm ending here.  Relying on secret rule #*mumble mumble*, I'm saying there were at least 3 more thankfuls in the intro paragraph.

Have a wonderful day!

If you are in the line of the big storm and cold weather, I'm praying for you!

Now, what are you thankful for this week?


Ten Things of Thankful


 Your hosts

57 comments:

  1. we were supposed to get socked with snow but we didn't. It is -13 this morning though. I think God everyday for the plow &the snow blower...isnt a play date with one of your kids fabulous?

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    1. Oh, the one person who likes snow didn't get it? Wish you could come visit us.
      I don't want to even think about -13, but it's a comin. Any tips for getting through?
      Yes, a date with one of the kids is fabulous.

      Delete
    2. woke up in the mid night with no heat! The furnace sprung some sort of pump... so having a stove and lots of blankets and a warm poodle would be my advice! I hear youre getting socked with snow right now, huh?

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    3. Oh no!!!, I don't have a poodle, but I do have blankets and space heaters. Hope you can get it fixed soon!

      Delete
  2. I'm thankful that I don't live in snow country. Okay, I would love to live in the tropics and never be cold.

    You have much to be thankful for indeed. Yes you do.

    Have a fabulous weekend. ☺

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    1. I'm with you. Bermuda was perfect weather. I could live like that forever, I think.

      I agree. :)

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  3. I really want to see you in the panda shorts. Really. REALLY.
    I agree with you that 95% of teacher gifts are Starbucks cards. Which is great for people who drink coffee. Or can spare the calories on hot chocolate. I have a stack of them. Sonic cards would be nice. I could get a lot of Diet Cokes at happy hour prices with a Sonic gift card....
    I think the snow is supposed to hit us late afternoon. We're not supposed to get more than a couple of inches, which means we'll either get nothing or three feet. I only like snow when it leads to a snow day. The timing is very bad for this one.
    Reading truly does click on like a switch. Loved that about my days teaching first grade (back before they started teaching reading in kindergarten).

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    1. *raises hand* Me too. REALLY really.

      And I kind of feel like you aimed that 'Ain't gonna happen'...

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    2. I'm sure you both REALLY do. Don't hold your breath. It will probably depend on just how funny they are once they are on.
      At our school, we have the teachers fill out a wish list from a list of gift cards we sell at school, then the parents all donate to buy them. Teachers love it.
      I'm not really wanting snow days now. I'm going to want those days off in later January and February, not now when we've already been off for 2 weeks.
      Don't get me started on the teaching reading in kindergarten. I could get on a gigantic soap box about that topic.

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    3. Uhhhh just LOOK AT THEM!

      They. Will. Be. Hilarious.

      Delete
  4. I love #5. The if-then statement is funny, but also the idea of robe as fashion accessory cracks me up. Of course, I'm envisioning my warm, old, functional robe--maybe you pig farmers wear more glamorous attire? That's it, right? You took your robe off outside on your way into the pig pen? :-)

    Robe or no, stay warm!

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    1. Ha! It is my warm, old, most comfortable robe, and I had taken it off so I could go outside to help COW get the snow blower out of the van. :)

      I'll be doing my very best. Thanks.

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  5. OK, so #5 made me laugh out loud...for so many reasons. Love him...as you well know. Hope you are able to stay warm in your old but beautiful house. I am not as jealous of you this week...next week maybe but not right now. Especially on Monday. :)

    BTW I think you "BFF" (who DOES drink coffee) would love a "free date"...I'll even play Battleship if that's what it take. ;)

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    1. What's not to love? :)

      As long as we don't lose power, we'll be good. We have heaters in the kids' room, which we can move downstairs during the day if it gets too bad. And, of course, there's always my robe and lots of blankets.

      I'm thinking our first book club meeting should be at Starbucks. If you want. :)

      Delete
  6. This list is full of SO MUCH beautiful goodness I feel there were way more than 10 things! What an awesome list. Aaaah, a new reader in the house! And that picture of him angelic-ly reading TO the other angel, priceless! So exciting. My son was never an avid reader by himself, but I was thrilled at each new level to be able to at least read my favorite stories TO him.
    I love your made-up statistic! The teachers I'm friends with recommend WINE for teachers, but most people don't feel that is an appropriate gift, so I would imagine coffee is the next best thing! I did not know Starbucks had games inside, maybe I'll keep the next gift card I get there :)
    I love the line about your robe, that is SO CUTE!

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    1. Some kids simply prefer to be read to, and that is just fine. I read books with my kids well after they can read on their own. I love it. Many times, I'll read a great book, knowing there is a good movie based on it, then watch the movie once we finish the book.

      The Starbucks we went to had a little bookshelf with books and games people could use in the store. I don't know if all of them have it or not, seeing as how I've never been to Starbucks before. :)
      That boy makes me laugh on a daily basis.

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  7. Oh I'm so thankful that I don't have your driveway :) Love those panda shorts, they're so cute!

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    1. Most people are. :)
      Those shorts crack me up. I can't imagine what they are going to look like on me, all stretched out around the hips and thighs.

      Delete
  8. Sorry but you can keep my share of the snow over there. Freshly fallen it looks pretty if you're inside looking out but otherwise I hate the stuff - it's cold, wet and downright dangerous. It's been very wet here for the last month or so with only a few dry days; I'm not keen on rain either but at least it runs down the drains!

    Love those panda shorts, we NEED to see a photo of you wearing them :)

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    1. Rats! I was hoping to share. :) Yes, for the most part, rain is much better than snow.

      NEED is such a strong word...

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  9. Holy cow. That is serious snow. It's beautiful though. And I do love this time between Christmas and New Years. We have family visiting and the laughter of cousins is great background music.

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    1. Yes, it is. We seem to be on a trend to get a lot of snow the past two winters. I'm not exactly enjoying that trend.
      The cousins in our family have so, so much fun together. I love it.

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  10. Funny, just this morning, I came across an article that said, (in part), 73 percent of people asked to guess a fact that is not known directly, (lets say, 'how many people died in the Great Influenza pandemic of 1918?' or 'how many cars were on the road in the US in the year 1967/) will get the answer right! I'm with Dynanne...you gots to put up a shorts-from-Japan photo... I believe it, (the guessing right thing, not the shorts-from-Japan thing) is called the Delphi Effect.

    pretty interesting

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    1. Who are you calling 'a structured group of individuals'?

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    2. You aren't making that up?? I thought it was a joke after my made-up statistic. I googled it. There is a Delphi Method, which used to be a Delphi Effect, but on wikipedia anyway, there was a discussion that made it become the method instead. Don't know why I just typed all that.
      Of course you're with Dyanne. Who doesn't want to see someone in silly panda shorts?? :)

      Delete
    3. (no…no! let me get that for you)… god! you are such a clark

      lol

      (props to finding it out there… that's one of the reasons we have so much fun around here…)

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  11. Gosh I just dunno which one of your kids I like best. Every time you write something wonderful about them, I think "Oh, it's DEFINITELY that one" and then you write something about another, and I change my mind.

    I'm glad you get to like all of them best, for them, because they're smashingly good kids :)

    WHOOT for you getting to spend time with COW (and COW getting to spend time with the anti-snow-device).

    YAY for your dates. I love *LOVE* that you do that. So special and thoughtful and really, what it's all about. Thank you for including those moments so we can read about them :)

    And please, please, pleasepleasepleasePLEASE let us see a photo of you in the shorts...

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    1. It all depends on the day, really. They takes turns. Aren't they sweet to do that for me? :)
      It's marvelous when he's home.
      the dates with the kids is one of the best things we've ever started with our kids. With so many kids, it is so important to let them be themselves without having to compromise or share us all the time.

      We'll see...But don't hold your breath.

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    2. Your dates with them is SO smart. I love it. I've kinda adopted it in a tiny way with Niece and Neff. And I found out today I get to take Niece out on the afternoon of her birthday, after nursery. I offered her the world, and all she wants to do is go to the playpark, bless her heart.

      *mphhhhhhhh - holding breath* Puh-leeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaase?

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  12. That snow blower looks like tons of fun! Can you ask your kids to build a snowman in honor of Lily and Violet, no snow here, and no prospects to get snow anytime soon :-(

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    1. Hey, if you start wishing snow on Europe and it happens, I'm TOTALLY blaming you. I hate snow and want it NO WHERE NEAR US. Even though it's raining down a storm and I hate that too :p

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    2. I can't say COW thinks it's tons of fun, but it's a whole lot more fun than shoveling!
      I will do my best with the snowman request. It won't happen in the next few days, with the super cold temperatures, but when things warm up a bit, I'll get them on it.

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  13. Now wait a minute....somewhere, there's a place where people still wear shorts OUTSIDE of their pants. Come on Christine. I dare you!

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    1. Find a place that does, then we'll talk. :)

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  14. Yes! Thank you for validating (accidentally) my post from before Xmas that you should give your kids' teachers gift cards. It's the right move. With a nice note. Glad you found a use for yours. Starbucks is always my default.

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    1. Gift cards are good gifts for teachers, for sure.
      When the kids were young and wanted to do such things, I did take them to the store to pick something out for their teachers. The teachers loved them, because the kids always put a lot of thought into their choices. Phoenix gave a lot of jewelry. Buttercup once gave her teacher sparkly slippers. Phoenix did choose a restaurant gift card for one teacher, so she could have one day off from cooking for her kids. It was always fun.

      Delete
  15. I love the photos of your kids with their little jammies on and they're hair sticking up all over. *grins* SO ADORABLE.

    You have a stellar list this week! I'm often thankful of living in the time I do for the exact same reasons. In fact, I think my very first TToT mentioned my appreciation for all things modern. Dish washer! Washer/Dryer! Toaster oven! omg...the list goes on and on. I might've just done my TToT in your comment section. LOL.

    Starbucks cards RULE. I ask for them every year from my In-Laws. Love going there with the kiddos and having coffee while they have strawberry milk or hot chocolate.

    Be careful, safe, and warm during the storm!!! You'll be in my thoughts, Christine!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yeah well you keep doing that bloggy sentencey switch-a-roo thing now, which keeps you all tied up over the weekend. Your first TToT was good, and there was SO much potential for you to get really into this...

      *sulks a little bit*

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    2. The jammies and crazy hair is what they looked like all week long. It was marvelous. And really, Cuckoo's hair always looks like that. I try to comb it down, but it never stays for long.
      I remember that first list. Such a shame you don't do them anymore... ;)
      Most coffee drinkers most certainly do like a Starbucks gift card. I don't know why I didn't think of the hot chocolate before now.

      Thank you! I will do my best staying warm. :)

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  16. Oooh - so much I nodded along to here. First off - best of luck to you and yours for surviving your impending cold snap. We're coming out of one right now, but it's been a frigid few days.

    I loved your bit on reading, because with my eldest being 4, I'm curious when that "click" will happen. I know we're a ways off yet - still very much in storytime land - but am starting to wonder how quickly it progresses once it does click...

    As for Starbucks cards - yup - that's what we got for our daughter's three teachers? I'd be curious what the "average" amount is that you get so I know if I'm in the ballpark.... But I'm glad to know I at least picked a good gift :)

    All the best for the week - Louise

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    1. The entire city is buckling down, buying up all the bread, eggs, and milk.
      That reading click can happen any time between now and age 9. It's a marvelous thing to witness. Once it does click, the progress is unbelievable. Don't blink, because it's really quick. I actually missed it with my daughter. She never liked to show off, so one day I just caught her reading a book to her little brothers. She was only three, so I figured she had just memorized the book. But then I saw it was one I hadn't read in a long time. I asked her to read different things, including the cover of a magazine. She read every word, with the proper inflection and everything. I was flabbergasted.
      I paid much closer attention with the other kids.

      I received three cards, and each were $10. As a room mom for the older kids, I have had to collect money for a joint Christmas present every year. The range is usually $5-$15.

      Thank you!

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  17. Christine, the desire to feel good about yourself is probably the best gift anyone can give, and I'm glad your children love to give you that gift. Buttercup's going to be awesome this year! Hopping along with ya.

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    1. They do have their moments when they want me to feel better about myself. They like to make fun of me, too, but that's to be expected in this house. ;)
      She most certainly is. It going to be a big year for her, as she graduates from the school she's attended for 9 years to head off to high school. I have no doubt that is where she will shine.

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  18. First off, love how you ended this. Seriously, made lol just a bit and I have to say I need to remember to walk away sometimes from here when I am hungry. Also, it was a great week here, too with my girls being home (nowhere to go go the most part) and even having Kevin home on Wednesday for New Year's, got out of work early from the snow on Thursday and off completely on Friday after having a blizzard. So, I could totally relate to what you were saying at the beginning of your post and then some!! Hope you are enjoying the weekend so far and staying warm. Very cold here too and think we are getting more snow in the next day or two, as well.

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    1. Walking away is absolutely necessary sometimes.
      It's amazing how different the day is when my husband comes home just a couple of hours early, let alone stays home all day.
      Stay safe and warm through all of this problem-causing weather.

      Delete
  19. I tried and tried and TRIED to reply above to Dyanne & Lizzi's comments (can you sense my frustration???) Usually I would probably have left by now. You left me no choice though. Of course you need to take a photo with the panda shorts but not before you "put your robe on with your slippers..." so you'll be even MORE beautiful!!! ;D

    That is one heck of a LOT of snow!!! Brrrrrrr.....

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    1. How dare my blog not let you comment?!?! It must have known you were going to write something you shouldn't and saved you from yourself. :)

      I have some ideas about what to do with the shorts...

      You live in Canada! Surely you get lots of snow and cold temperatures.

      Delete
    2. Well then I will reply to yours HERE, Diane - because if Christine didn't have dumbass blogger comments here instead of super-cool Disqus, you wouldn't be so thwarted.

      New mission - get these comment systems updated!

      Delete
  20. I don't drink coffee either but use my Starbuck's gift cards for their hot chocolate too- yum!

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    1. It's very nice of them to offer something besides coffee. :)

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  21. We must not be far from each other, we got 18" and are bracing for -11 for tomorrow, it's already 0 now. One of the dogs won't go out because he's got a really light coat. It's going to be a long night. Thankfully we have a snowblower too, the husband had to plow a path for the little dog because she couldn't get to her spot anymore ;-)
    I love these lists, its such a real look at everyone.
    I am very happy to have joined you, I will definitely be back!

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    1. I'm in the Indianapolis area. How about you?
      Oh, poor puppy. Our dogs won't come in the house. They've never spent one minute in the house, and are not exactly comfortable with the idea of it. They prefer to be in their dog houses, which we've insulated with piles of snow on the outside and straw on the inside. They don't like walking in the snow, though, so they keep pooping in the driveway where the snow is packed down. It's just a bit annoying. ;)
      I do, too. It's nice to read the variety of happy lists, especially since everyone does it so differently.
      Yay!

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  22. We have a snowblower, but it is almost useless on our gravel driveway. We've been lucky not to need it so far this year, but I have no idea what tomorrow will look like.

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    1. Our driveway is gravel as well. It won't work much for smaller amounts of snow, but for this storm, it looks like it will be extremely helpful.
      Good luck!

      Delete
  23. You can send us some of your snow - we've only had wind and rain this winter. Lots of both.
    Your comment about Turken's reading is interesting - I noticed the same thing about my kids. They both just had a moment when it all clicked in.
    Have a good week.

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  24. Oh Christine: I love those panda pants! And I think if someone sends them to you a photo of them being worn is in order. Maybe you could coax one of the kids into slipping them on for a photo? I don't live in an area that gets that much snow in several years, let alone one. I love your husband's new toy. And although I wouldn't want to live where there is that much snow, I would surely like to visit because it makes everything look beautiful! #5 was hilarious. And I love that your kids enjoy reading to their siblings. This is a fantastic list. Happy New Year to you and your family.

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  25. This is one incredibly nasty weather system and I have been watching the weather channel. Knowing where some of my blogging friends live, I was worried. You were definitely one I thought of and I hope you all stay safe and as warm as possible. I love your list this week. I'm so glad to hear that Buttercup is doing better and it gives me hope. We are in that tween stage that is horrible for a parent to navigate but I feel for my daughter because I know it stinks worse for her. Just hanging on and doing the next right thing! Your Starbucks date with Giant sounds amazing! I would have enjoyed every moment of that with my son! So good for you and thanks to those generous parents!

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Thank you for taking the time to tell me what you're thinking!