Sunday, November 1, 2009

Guardian Angel

Lauren's guardian angel is working overtime BIG TIME! If he/she were paid, they should be paid triple time with all the hard work they have in watching over her. In her 7 years, she has:

Fell on the treadmill when brother plugged it in and turned it on full blast when she was standing on it. As you can see, she burned her face pretty bad. Luckily, no scarring.

Walked behind brother who was swinging a baseball bat and got hit in the eyebrow area. Small scar, but no long term damage/concussion.

Was playing at a friends house and got pushed off the roof of a small playhouse and broke her arm. Didn't involve the growth plate, so she healed just fine.

No picture, but she injured her wrist/hand while at the school's lock in. There was a large inflatable slide/bounce house in the gym. While at the top of the slide, the inflatable tipped over knocking a bunch of kids off onto the gym floor. Took her to the ER clinic, but it was just severe soft tissue breaks.

Her most recent accident....while I was vacuuming, she decided to climb up on my headboard and "timber" backwards. She ended up hitting her head on the wood foot board and cracking her head open resulting in 3 staples in her head.

She has NO fear of anything. We've had a long talk with her about thinking through things before actually doing them. She's been pretty lucky so far, but I'm afraid one of these times, she's going to be seriously injured or worse.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Giving Back

This year, my kids and I are participating in Samaritan's Purse's Operation Christmas Child. It's a fairly inexpensive way to help children in need during the Christmas season. I want my kids to know that Christmas is not just about Santa and getting presents. It's nice to be able to give back.

With OCC, you fill a shoe box (or small plastic box) with small toys, school supplies, hygiene items and other things you think the child may like. Decide if it's for a boy or girl and the age range intended and pay $7 per box for help in shipping. You can mail the box to Samaritan's Purse or drop off at a location convenient to you. (Check the website for drop off locations closest to your zip code.)

We've done this in years past and my kids really enjoy going to the store and picking out items for these boxes.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Back to the Basics

The other day, the kids were off at school, I was cleaning the house and hubby was working outside in the yard. I desperately needed to go grocery shopping but it was lunchtime, so I wanted to eat before going so I didn't buy everything in sight!

I had a package of hot dogs, but no buns, so I cut them up and mixed them with a can of baked beans and lunch.

When hubby and I were eating, we talked about how this meal used to be a staple to us when we were first married and dirt poor. We probably ate beans and wienies once a week. Life was a lot simpler then. No kids, no mortgage, no investment properties or renters to deal with. We wouldn't give any of that up now (well maybe the mortgage if we could), but we loved our life back then. We didn't have two nickels to rub together, but we were happy all the time. Not to say we're not happy now, but responsibility can definitely take a toll.

Saturday, October 24, 2009


It's crazy how much hype and hysteria is being given to this H1N1 business. We had a confirmed case at Thing 1 and Thing 2's school and it happened to be in Lauren's class. There were several parents in the school that either did keep their kid home from school or thought about keeping their kids home after receiving the note about the case.

It's just a strain of the flu. Yes, we should be concerned and yes, it can be severe, but then again, so can the regular flu. I imagine that next year, H1N1 will be a common strain of flu for us.

There was a brief time that we thought maybe Lauren had it, but she was down for a day and then was back to normal with just a lingering cough. Nathaniel came home from school the next day with a fever, but slept it off with some Tylenol and all is well with him too. Hubby is battling a sinus infection, so right now, I'm the only healthy one (knock on wood). I've stocked up on Vitamin C to help ward off all the cooties around here and I follow behind everyone with a can of Lysol spraying everything they come into contact with. :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

WFMW ~ Mopping Wood Floors

Mopping has always been my most hated household chore. I will find a hundred other things to do instead of mopping, but since it has to be done I begrudgingly do it. You'd think that someone who hates mopping as much as I do would have chosen to build a home with something other than hardwood floors throughout the whole house, but sadly, due to Thing 2's allergies, this was for the best.

After checking out different hardwood floor cleaners/sytems/mops, I decided to try Bona. It's non-toxic and safe to use around pets and family. You have the mop "handle" which you attach a microfiber pad to the bottom and then a spray bottle with the cleaner. I spray an area and then mop. Simple as that. The microfiber pad is reusable and washable up to 300 times.

I did go to their Bona's website and saw they have a new mop similar to the Swiffer WetJet that has the cleaner attached right to the mop. I might need to get that. :)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Disaster Struck

Last night the kids went to their school's lock in. In the gymnasium, they had one of those big bounce house style slides set up for the kids to play on. Whether it wasn't set up correctly or too many kids were on it and horsing around, but it tipped OVER onto the gym floor with kids on top (including my own Lauren).

The school secretary called us to tell us what had happened, but stated right away that our daughter was okay. In fact, she was insisting on staying at the lock in and didn't want to come home. The secretary said that she scraped her cheek and had a slight fat lip.

When we picked the kids up at 9pm, Lauren had a little bit of a swollen cheek, but nothing major. She did say her wrist hurt a little, but it appeared to be fine. This morning, it's a little bit swollen and she says it hurts, but we're going to wait and see how it's doing tomorrow. She can move it, so it's probably not broken.

There was one girl that was apparently taken by ambulance to the ER. Although with elementary school kids, you hear different versions of what happened so we don't know for sure what's wrong. She apparently hit her head and "cracked it open" and had trouble breathing. For now, she'll be in our prayers for a quick recovery.

Lauren was pretty scared when it happened, but seems to be okay now. It could have been so much more worse. I thank God that it wasn't!

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Last week in the car, the kids were wondering about guys that I had dated before I met their dad. I told them about my first boyfriend in 8th grade. Of course at that age, you're not real serious about anyone. I continued on with the other guys I had dated before meeting dad and conversation was over.

A couple of days later, the kids were playing outside and brought in an envelope they said they "found" in the mailbox. On the outside it read: "FROM SOMWON" (from someone)

Inside there were two notes:

1) This is somwon who still loves you. He's from 8th grade. can you figer out. Signed by somwon.

2) Dear eneyone. I love you. Who am I. Signed secrit from 8th grade.

OOOOH.....tricky! The notes riddled with bad spelling and the fact that the notes go from 1st to 3rd person have me stumped! I hope I can figure out who my secret admirer is! :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Product Review

This morning I tried one of Lean Cuisine's new frozen breakfasts. Had I actually read the box, I probably wouldn't have purchased it, but since I didn't, I was stuck eating it.

I had the new Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Panini. Sounds good, but after my first bite, something tasted off. It was a little too sweet. I pulled the box out of the recycle bin and read the front. "Scrambled Egg Whites, Sausage, Cheddar and reduced fat Mozzarella Cheeses and Sweet Maple Sauce on Cinnamon-flavored Multigrain Bread." Maple syrup and cinnamon flavored multigrain bread don't belong anywhere near sausage, egg & cheese in my opinion.

Looks like I'll be sticking to the Smart Ones breakfasts or making my own.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

WFMW ~ Pizza Cutter

The pizza cutter is my best friend! Not only does it slice pizza, but I use it to cut up waffles, pancakes, pizza in bite sized pieces, cut the crusts off kids sandwiches, and many many more things! This is probably used by a million other people already, but it works for me!

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Nathaniel has a planner given to him by his 3rd grade teacher to write assignments in. At the bottom of each page there are study hints on one side and an inspirational tidbit on the other. As I was reviewing his assignments yesterday, the study tip was, "Find a quiet and private place to do your homework." On the other side it said, "Chewing tobacco can make your teeth fall out." While absolutely true, I found this to be incredibly hilarious. It was just so blunt and to the point.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Go-to Meals

Now that my kids are involved in extra curricular activities, sometimes we don't have a lot of time for dinner. While I admit to serving my kids frozen pizzas and Kid Cuisines from time to time, I don't like to depend on those. I came up with a couple of go-to meals that the whole family likes that are quick and easy to get on the table. These are meals that I pretty much always have the ingredients on hand for.

Cheeseburger Biscuit Bake

1 lb ground beef
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 can (8oz) tomato sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
dash pepper
2 cups cheddar cheese divided
1 tube buttermilk biscuits

Preheat oven to 400. Cook beef and onion; drain. Stir in tomato sauce and ketchup. Sprinkle with pepper. Spoon half into greased 8x8 baking dish. Sprinkle with half of the cheese. Repeat layers. Place biscuits around edges of dish. Bake uncovered for 18-22 minutes or until meat mixture is bubbly and biscuits are golden brown.

Hamburger and Green Beans

1 lb hamburger
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can green beans, drained
2 cups cooked rice

Cook hamburger. Add green beans and cream of mushroom soup. Stir to blend and heat through. Serve over cooked hot rice.

What are your quick go to meals?

Remembering Lt. Michael T. Russo

This year I am participating in Project 2,996 to remember the victims of 9/11. As the wife of a firefighter, I asked to be assigned the name of a firefighter.

Lt. Michael T. Russo
Age 44

Michael was born to Delores and Anthony Russo. He also leaves behind wife Theresa, son Michael Jr., brother Anthony, sister in law Arlene, brother in law Thomas (Hortensia), nieces Allison and Alexandra and nephews Kevin and Brian.

Michael was a pole vaulter in high school who also loved to scuba dive, ski, play golf and hockey. After graduating from Manhattan college, he become a firefighter with FDNY and was assigned to Squad 1 in Park Slope, Brooklyn. He had recently been promoted to lieutenant. He died in the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, while heroically trying to help those trapped inside.

As hard as it is to write a tribute to someone I don't know, I thought it was important to remember him. Going by accounts of what others who've known him have written, he was a very caring and dedicated man always wanting to help others. He will be missed but never forgotten.

A trust fund has been set up for Michael's son, Michael Jr. Inquiries can be made to

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

First Day of School

Nathaniel on his first day of 3rd grade!

Lauren on her first day of 2nd grade!

Waiting for the bus

Off they go!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

WFMW ~ Organizing Food

After cleaning out my garage freezer and finding over eight pounds of chicken stashed in the back, I decided to "inventory" my freezer. I listed everything in there on a spreadsheet for a quick look at what I had. After finishing that, I also inventoried my fridge freezer, my basement freezer chest and my lazy susan. Now when I'm trying to figure out what to make for dinner or menu plan, I can just look at my lists. Much easier than standing in front of an open freezer! Brrr......

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

WFMW - Backpacks

After spending $20+ on character backpacks for my kids each year and then having them still fall apart mid-late school year, I finally found a solution.

I had an LL Bean backpack when I was in high school. I still have it, so when my son's backpack fell apart last year, I gave him mine instead of going out and buying him another one in April. That thing is still in great shape, even after the abuse it gets from my son!

I purchased one this year for my daughter for only $27.95. They come in several different sizes for different ages of kids, and many come with matching lunch boxes.

LLBean works for me!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

WFMW ~ Cleaning Stainless Steel

When we built our house two years ago, I WANTED stainless steel appliances. Once I got them, I realized what a pain they were to clean. I've tried everything to clean these. Any and every product in the store that was meant for stainless steel, I bought. I have the clutter under my kitchen sink to prove it.

Yesterday while browsing in Target, I came across a product I hadn't seen/tried before, so I figured what the heck?

Weiman's Stainless Steel Cleaner & Polish not only took the fingerprints off the fridge it made the appliances look shiny and brand new! With young kids in the house, I probably should buy stock in this product for as often as I'll have to use it!

That's what works for me!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones (or just mean friends)

Lauren after falling (actually pushed) off of a playhouse at a friends house. She was such a trooper. The top picture was the temporary cast/sling she got at the ER. The bottom picture is of her waterproof cast that she'll have to wear for three weeks. At that point they'll remove it and re x-ray it to see if the break has healed. We're keeping our fingers crossed!


Since my old blog crashed and I was no longer able to access it, I thought I'd start up a new one.

There's so many weekly things in blogland that I'd like to participate in, so hopefully you'll be seeing me around more. :)