Saturday, August 30, 2008

He knows the inventory

Recall the post a few days ago about our "food taker." Yesterday I promised the kids lemonade with lunch. I went to the cabinet to get the mix (we buy the 2 quart premix stuff). I found the container on its usual shelf, empty. Apparently the last person to use it put it back with nothing in it. I explained this to Carter (the one who REALLY wanted the lemonade). He insisted there was lemonade in the cabinet. I showed him the empty container and again explained I can't make the lemonade with no mix. His response: "You do have some Mommy." Reaching the point of exasperation at not being able to explain our situation to a 4 year old I told him "Carter, if you can tell Mommy where to get lemonade out of that cabinet I will get it and make it for you." He said "On the highest shelf, all the way at the back." Yes, you guessed it. Behind the sure-jell boxes, muffin pan liners, tea bags, and other misc stuff that doesn't get moved around very often was a container of lemonade mixes. When I told Tim about this last night he wasn't surprised. He told me that Carter had done the same thing when he was in search of a bagel for breakfast yesterday morning. So today as I make my shopping list and try to figure out what we have and need, I know who to ask.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Grass is always greener, food is always better

Katey has a new habit. She loves to eat other people's food. It can be identical to the food on her plate, but still she will prefer the one belonging to someone else. Last night Tim couldn't eat his popcorn because Katey was so busy consuming it. When she finished eating she came over to me and gave me her bowl - which was untouched. I can't leave my water sitting around anywhere, because Mommy's drink is also preferred-and she still has a high backwash percentage! Tonight it was her Daddy's dinner at church. It was taco salad so I took sandwiches for the kids and they ate those with some tortilla chips. She reached over and dipped her chip in her Daddy's plate and said "Daddy's food is yummy." What was really funny is that you could tell she wasn't really sure she liked the taste, but since it was Daddy's it was automatically "YUMMY." If she keeps this up it is going to wreak havoc on my germophobic tendencies as cold and flu season approaches.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Learning interesting facts

This week I picked up some "fun" non-fiction books at the library. We have learned a lot about airplanes, food - for humans and animals and where it comes from, and toys. A book about the origin of favorite toys has been particularly interesting. Tonight we read about the slinky and legos. At the end of the chapter is a set of "facts", trivia about the toy in that chapter. I read along -aloud- the information about the various Legolands around the world. Guess where the kids want to go. I have to learn to preread!!!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

A Proud Criminal and a Lost Tooth

Today Carter confessed. The more correct term might be boasted. Somehow we have raised a child proud of his indiscretions. I was preparing dinner and Carter was talking to me in the kitchen. He said " Mama, during quiet time when no one is in the kitchen I come in really quiet and take the food. I am the food taker." Bold, honest, and I think he has just given himself a new nickname. I had to laugh despite my intentions of ending his "food taking"- somehow we have to teach him that being a thief is not a good thing. A few minutes later Matthew (with lots of encouragement from Laurel) let me pull his first loose tooth. He showed me that it was really loose yesterday and I told him he would lose it sometime this week, but then Laurel took over as coach. Much wiggling, twisting, and pulling led to an extraction less than 24 hours later.

Today was the first day of soccer for the boys and they had a great time. I will take my camera to their first game in a couple of weeks and try to post some video for all to see. Carter is doing well even though he is younger than all the other players.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Back to School

Today was back to our routine and I think everyone enjoyed being back to normal. We did school, cleaned up, had quiet time, and we even managed to fit in a craft. I spent more individual time with each child in school today and that made for a longer day, but they seemed to enjoy my focused attention. The last week or so has been pretty hectic. We made it to church tonight and it was good to be back. Katey really enjoyed being back with her class and her teachers. I am tired and headed to bed so I can do it all again tomorrow along with a trip to the library and shopping for soccer season this fall. Life is too busy!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Detroit Zoo

Here are the pictures I took at the Zoo while in Michigan set to a little "animal music".


We are home. As we got close to home last night I asked Tim "Do you remember if the house was clean when we left?" Neither one of us could recall. Unfortunately the answer was no. The boys came downstairs after taking their bags up and said "someone has been in our house and they made a big mess in our room!" I had to explain that they had made the mess before leaving. I am spending the day trying to get things cleaned up and doing some review work for school with the kids. After living for three weeks with what we could fit in the van it seems like we need to get rid of at least half of what we own. We have too much stuff and a Mom who doesn't want to deal with keeping it up!! So far I have four bags going to the thrift store. I will try to post the remaining pics from our trip by tomorrow.

My Grandmother was able to write a few words on a pad yesterday to communicate with my Mom and Aunt so that is encouraging. Please continue to pray for her to regain the ability to speak. Also pray for our family as everyone works to care for her, family members travel to help, and for relief from the stress that comes when one you love so much is ill. Thanks.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Prayer Request

We awoke yesterday and found that my Grandmother had suffered a stroke during the night. She is showing encouraging signs, but continues to be unable to speak. Please keep her in your prayers as well as our travel home. We expect to be home in Murray on Monday evening and I will send an update.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Alte Pinakothek

I visited the Alte Pinakothek (Old Paintinggallery) art museum in Munich. It is huge! Way too many paintings to see in one visit. The museum featured many 17 century works, such as by Rubens. See Rubens with His First Wife, Isabella Brandt, in the Honeysuckle Bower, 1609-10. Tim

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Thurn und Taxis

We visited the Thurn und Taxis palace. It is a 500 room palace that started as a monastery. The Thurn und Taxis family still lives there. "The beautiful cloisters of the ancient abbey, one of the oldest in Germany, are still in fair preservation. In 1809 the conventual buildings were converted into a palace for the prince of Thurn and Taxis, hereditary postmaster-general of the Holy Roman Empire. "

Monday, August 11, 2008

Klosterschenke Weltenburg

Greetings! I visited the The Klosterschenke Weltenburg (monastery) yesterday. The trip involved trains, busses, and a boat trip up the Danube. The setting makes a beautiful place to eat lunch, which we did along with many German tourists. Tim

Friday, August 8, 2008


Yesterday we toured a brewery in Regensburg called Kneitinger. We got to see how beer is made. This brewery has been making beer since 1530. The logo features a goat, or "bock" in German. Tim

Thursday, August 7, 2008

craft projects

Tonight the kids did craft projects. They were given some of the projects they missed during earlier weeks of VBS and they did a couple of them tonight. They spent the afternoon immersed in electronics as we tried to keep them quiet while Papa recovered from oral surgery this morning. It was time to turn it all off after dinner and have some time in the real world. We head to MI in the morning if Papa can make the trip.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Used bookstore

I had forgotten how much I love the used bookstore. I used to be a regular customer trading books in and buying more, but once we left Knoxville we left our used bookstore days behind. We have gotten used to utilizing the library and interlibrary loan for most everything we read. Today I took Laurel and stack of books my Mom was ready to trade in to "Mr. K's Books" and we had a blast. Laurel was excited to pick books she could keep for as long as she wanted. I was excited to get the Narnia books (we have trouble finishing these in the time the library will allow). Laurel found some good books: Ginger Pye, Peter Pan, Treasure Island, and more. Hopefully she will enjoy reading her new inventory while in Michigan.

Hello from Regensburg

Hello from Regensburg. Here is a photo of the Dom (church) in Regensburg. According to Wikipedia, "the Dom (Cathedral) is a very interesting example of pure German Gothic and counts as the main work of Gothic architecture in Bavaria. It was founded in 1275 and completed in 1634, with the exception of the towers, which were finished in 1869." Today we will visit the Ratshaus (town hall). Tim

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Bye to the music

I am taking the link to the music off the blog. Quite frankly until we were away from home I didn't realize how annoying it could be. Our computer is always set to "mute". At my parent's it comes on incredibly loud and since I can't find a way to make it play more quietly automatically I am taking it off.

This morning we went to the library. The kids were disappointed when we found it closed for a staff meeting. We returned our books to the night deposit and will try again later. We are headed to swim and play in the sand again at the lake today after Katey wakes up from nap. It seems she, like me, was worn out after yesterday's day at the zoo. I am hoping this activity filled week will tire them so that they will sleep for HOURS on the drive to Detroit.

Monday, August 4, 2008


Today we went to the zoo. I am posting several pictures of the kids individually so Tim can see them. The baby chimp, George- in the first picture below, is just a couple of weeks old! The kids have been looking forward to seeing him. Daisy (Mom) was very proud to show us her baby. She brought him up close and would knock on the glass if we weren't looking close enough. The picture of them is blurry because I had to turn the flash off to take a picture through the glass, but you might be able to tell that she was smiling!
Daisy and George
The kids on the carousel. (Carter is behind Matthew)
Katey enjoyed the sandbox in the Kid's Cove area.
It was too hot by the time I tried to get a group shot. No one felt much like posing.
Laurel sat still in the butterfly exhibit hoping her flowered shirt would attract a new friend. It worked!!
Got pictures of plants Tim liked when we were there in the Spring.

Sunday, August 3, 2008


I attended a concert by the Czech National Symphony Orchestra today. The concert was at the Municipal House in Prague (see photo). This was the last night of the Prague Proms festival. Tim.

Those shoes!

Saturday we went to the swimming area at one of the TVA lakes here. It was fun- the kids loved playing in the sand and making sand castles. Katey learned to make footprints and loved making them, pouring water over them, and making more. She kept herself amused for a long time, and I kept having to move her around to find less "saturated areas" of sand . It was hot and I wanted to be home for Tim to call so we called it a day way before the kids were done. Trying to get the kids in the car and leave at least some of the sand behind was chaotic. Matthew took off his shoes and climbed in- the shoes we had to search all over for (apparently you can't buy a pair of cheap "crocs" late in the summer without difficulty). I got home and realized Matthew didn't have his shoes. We had left them sitting beside the car. I weighed my options: drive back to the park, chance them being there by the time church is over on Sunday to save gas, or go back to the Walmart and get another pair, if they had his size. I decided that they would likely be gone by Sunday afternoon, they might not have his size in a new pair, so I drove back. I'm guessing it cost me about what we paid for the shoes in gas to go get them (they were on clearance), but we have the shoes and hope it is the last time I have to worry about Matthew and his crocs- the only shoes he wants to wear in the summer.
As for Tim in Germany he is having a good time but is suffering the woes of an American tourist in Europe with the weak dollar. He told me today that a cup of coffee where he was yesterday was $3 to $4. It is costing him about 50 cents a minute to call home, but we are happy to hear Daddy's voice. Katey is cute when she says "Daddy's in Gername (Ger-Na-Me)".

Friday, August 1, 2008

Spray Park

Today was the spray park-see the images below. We stopped on the way home to take advantage of the no tax weekend here and I picked up fall shoes for the kids today at payless for less than $9 a pair!!! I am feeling good about my bargains. Later at Walmart everyone got socks, some got underwear, a few school supplies, and stickers for Katey. Its amazing how pleased kids can be with "necessities" when you make underwear and sock shopping a shopping spree!! Tomorrow's plans are up in the air, stay tuned. I am bummed because I am missing the awesome FREE breakfast at Office Depot at home! Remember people - its a small town, we love our simple pleasures.