Saturday, September 29, 2007

Snapdragons Rule!

I am a

What Flower
Are You?

Thanks to Mrs. Sam for this fun quiz!
Just a bit of trivia for you; my favorite snapdragon bears my daughter's name!

Friday, September 28, 2007

"It Might Behoove Me to Be Heaved"

Ever feel like you are in the belly of the whale? Not quite listening to what the Lord had called you to do? I have been feeling that way lately and thought I would share these words of wisdom! :-)

Besides, who can resist the Newsboys? Happy Friday!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Todays Lesson

Complete the following equation...

3 well meaning, but needy children - 1 traveling father = _________ ?

Answer: One tired and cranky Momma!


On top of being sick this week, I do not sleep well when Mr. Clean is gone. Just the comfort of him snoozing next to me is soothing and familiar. I have been married to the man for almost twelve years and grown quite fond of him so when he is missing, life just stinks. I am tired and grumpy to say the least (time for some Ramen Noodles).

If you are a homeschooling military Mom who has experienced deployment you have my permission to come and smack me upside my head for complaining about the measly 5 days my husband will be gone this week. Single parenting is not for the feeble minded (like myself lately) and knowing that there is an end in sight makes life much easier.

I must send out a shout of thanks and appreciation to my friend Susie who offered to come and hang out with me last night to ease the burden. She brought Mr. Holland's Opus with her and I am not sure I will ever recover. Now my eyes are puffy to boot. Stupid movie.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Just Go With the Flow

I have never been one to like the leadership role. I will help anyone in any capacity, but I have no need to be in charge. Just stick me in the background, tell me what needs to be done and I will do it. Mr. Clean has the same personality.

That's not to say we do not have our own definite opinions, we do, but we tend not to be that outspoken and know that we can just change our personal situations if we find the leadership in any given spot undesirable. We just like to go with the flow.

I have been in two different leadership positions this year that just prove to me that I still like the background. The first was with an international mother's organization. I was on the board as a treasurer (a role I adored, numbers never disagree!) and when the fiscal year ended there needed to be new President as the old one had no desire to re-run (nor anyone else). Against my better judgment I was convinced to go for it.

The year was successful but as I am not one to like confrontation, when uncomfortable issues came up between members, it zapped me emotionally. My theory; just be happy, darn it! I kind of surmised that because not all the members are believers that they would not have the same outlook on things and behaviors that I would. No big deal. It's a secular organization.

The second situation is with believers and that makes it tougher. We are in a group with people we love and are officially co-leaders. Unofficially we have no role and it is a struggle for us. Since however, we are "go with the flow" kind of people we have never stepped up and questioned any decisions being made without our thoughts and/or consent.

It probably looks to the other group members and leaders that we don't care or mind what happens, but we do and it's a hard situation to swallow and address. So pray that we prayerfully and logically access the situation. We do not want to damage any relationships, but we think it may be time to officially step down and possible remove ourselves completely.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Being Faithful to My Students

I have had an epiphany. I have them a lot so maybe they can only be classified as "awarenesses" or "a-ha moments", not truly epiphanies. Whatever you call it, I had one. Again.

This homeschooling thing has nothing to do with me. Yes, I am the teacher and the one in charge of keeping things running smoothly and on course, but it's not about me whatsoever. It's all about them. I don't get bragging rights when they have finished a workbook or read their first sentence (yeah Xena!), they do. I tend to forget this and I start revolving their schooling around my schedule when it should be the other way around.

Their education should be dictating my schedule
. Homeschooling mothers (and fathers) all have things that cannot be ignored like cooking dinner, washing laundry and the urgent need to pee, but there are few precious things that should take our focus away from the calling to which we have obviously been brought. I have yet met a homeschooler that does this, "just for the heck of it". This is a commitment.

So I have decided to recommit myself to my children's education under my King's and my husband's authority. Not that I would ever pretend to speak for the Almighty, but I doubt He would put much stock in a myriad of play dates, field trips and "mommy down times" at the expense of a solid education. Those things are important, but only after a daily or weekly educational criteria have been met.

There will be "those days" and all of you homeschoolers and parents know what "those days" are. But isn't it our responsibility to make sure "those days" do not outnumber days spent building a solid foundation of learning?

Monday, September 24, 2007

I Am a Ninny

I will say it again, "I am a ninny". Maybe they have Ninny's Anonymous or something that I could go to for help.

I never ever watch Hallmark movies (unless Susie forces me) because I cry at all the commercials conspiratorially placed in said made for TV movies. Nor can I simply watch one more episode of "Extreme Makeover Home Edition" without wanting to go and jump off the roof in my grief, so I have decided to stick with "safe" shows like old 90's reruns of "COPS" and "SuperNanny".

Yet this week alone I have been sucked into two different media productions that made me bawl like a three year old denied ice cream.

The first was "Kid Nation", which looked completely cheesy on the commercials and had Mr. Clean and I cracking jokes and rolling our eyes. But apparently Mr. Softie Clean thought the kids might like it so we watched it with them and my eyes leaked. Stupid show.

Then tonight I declared it movie night so I could turn off my slow functioning and still congested brain and veg out, so the kids picked the human version of Charlotte's Web, which none of us had previously seen.

Now, I have seen the old cartoon version and have, of course, read the classic, but I cried anyway. For a spider. Did I ever mention I am seriously freaked out by spiders and the computer animated one is nothing like the pretty cartoon version. It's just creepy. Still, I cried for the creepy dead spider. Stupid movie.

I am going upstairs to watch a "COPS" rerun now and get a good laugh.

Life's Cure All

I have found the cure for all that ails ya! Albeit, while not completely cured yet, I am feeling loads better and I can tell you that it is all thanks to Ramen Noodles.

For the past two days I have eaten pretty much nothing but Ramen Noodles, saltines and cola; the sick gal's staples. After each bowl of noodles I had a clear head, soothed throat and renewed spirit. It only lasted about an hour, but I felt markedly better regardless for that brief time (it's accumulative you know, so the more you eat, the better). The saltines were only a mild distraction while the cola simply soothed my throat and stomach while it was being actively ingested.

So after two days of intense scientific study I have concluded that Ramen Noodles can cure major illness. Or perhaps you will leave behind a pretty mummy due to all the sodium and chemicals. Either way, success!

Thankfully this little modern wonder only costs about $0.20 a package so load up and enjoy!

Knocked Down at the 20th

I had big plans for this weekend which were not extremely exciting, but quite fulfilling. I was going to CLEAN! I had been bitten by the cleaning bug the other night while redoing the family room and I was anxiously waiting for the chance to pawn the offspring off on Mr. Clean so I could get to work. Then Sunday I was going to join a friend for a tea in the community to cap off my weekend of hard work.

I was on my way for the goal when I got sidelined and tackled. Hard. Friday night I felt a little under the weather but I blew it off as a lack of proper sleep from my mad woman antics Wednesday night. By Saturday morning I felt as if I had been run over by a Mack truck. Full on temperature, sore throat, congested brain, upset stomach; the works. I slept all day.

Sunday Morning, same thing. The kids and the hubby went off to church while I slept. They came home and I slept some more. They went off to small group and I finally dragged myself out of bed to try and stay awake a little, lest I not be able to sleep all night. I slept all night regardless.

So here I am Monday morning feeling like a wet dish rag, but awake. A full roster of activities for the week wait for me with the house that needs even more attention due to the fact that the Momma person was, in essence, missing all weekend.

And Mr. Clean is flying out to Indiana today for the week.
Pray that the house does not fall down around my ears. Then again, my ears are so clogged that I just may not hear it anyway...

Friday, September 21, 2007

Just a Shout Out!

About an hour ago my newest nephew was born. Isn't he a cutie?!
Cool date to be born on as well ;-) little guy!


It's all about you today Babe!
Thanks for being an amazing father and husband.

Just for fun...

...although her Mr. Clean is fastidious in his cleaning and never speaks,
while my Mr. Clean, well...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Homeschooler's Reality?

I am a night owl. It is just the way I was engineered and I don't mind it so much, although my beloved Mr. Clean is the polar opposite in that regard.

Last night my shaven sweetie had to be out late working (he came home for dinner and Xena's soccer game and then went back to work; HUGE brownie points scored there), so I decided to do something perfectly logical like rid the house of every conceivable dust bunny after the kids were tucked all snug in their beds with visions of "whatever" dancing in their heads.

Here is my dilemma. I hate/abhor/despise dust and filth and clutter. However, I am a homeschooler and the two seem to sometimes go hand in hand as I am trying to raise my kids with brains like Einstein and hearts like Billy Graham. You see my conundrum.

So after my students were in bed and my hubby off I started with the family room. I moved every piece of furniture in the room and dusted, vacuumed and wiped until my heart was content. I even rearranged furniture. With one huge exception.

We have an entertainment center and television that must weigh about the same as our minivan. When we moved in three and a half years ago we treated ourselves to a new television and entertainment center and I dare say they have never been moved since (1,2,3,... all together now, "ewwww"!). Granted I have dusted what can be seen and moved, but this behemoth is caddy corned in the room and it is 5 feet wide by 5 feet tall, so there is a cavern behind it that can not be reached.

I could stand it no more. I was going in. Squeezing my forehead in the corner to take a peek I was horribly ashamed, embarrassed and never going to let my mother in my house again (the sight just might kill her). Remember all the Indiana Jones movies with scenes of Indy making his way through tunnels and spaces that had not been explored in, say, 500 years or so? You get the picture of what I was facing. Plus there was kid "stuff" back there completely covering the floor. I know I have told them not to throw things in the house, so since they would dare not disobey, I have no clue as to how all that stuff got back there (naive moment now over).

Obviously I could not move it myself so I busied myself obsessing over the rest of the room until at about 10 minutes to midnight my hero swept in after driving over an hour back home. It was all I could do to let him close the door before I pounced on him begging him to help me move the mountain in the corner. Although I am sure there were much better things he might have wanted to be doing at midnight (number one being looking at the backs of his eyelids), he acquiesced.

Soon after he was in bed while I continued my mad passion until 1 am. And all I got completed was that one room. Now today I am tired and cranky and do not want to do anything but continue my assault on dust bunnies, but my number one priorities still need to be educated.

As homeschoolers are we permanently resigned to only get 1/2 of everything else done until the children graduate? If so, it just may be another three years before I venture behind that entertainment center again.

I best get into my teaching role now. I have minds to help form while they sit on dusty chairs.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The "Elephant" In the Room

Geee, this test is a shocker (can you just hear the sarcasm dripping from my voice?).
Although, 42% Liberal? I would rather stick bamboo shoots under my fingernails.

Thanks to the Tutor for this test. I am sure she is laughing uncontrollably about my
libertarian rating ;-). Can I be a fascist libertarian (they received the same percentage)?
Seems a little contradictory to me!

You scored as Conservative, You believe in personal responsibility, believe in fiscal restraint and free markets, and believe government should limit radical social change. You are more likely to vote with the Republican Party.







Environmentalist (Green)










What is your true Political Ideology?
created with

Monday, September 17, 2007


Boy is this timely and a bit convicting for me, I just found myself recently grumbling about something regarding my own church; something that was quite minute and not at all pertinent to my walk, simply my comfort level. Ouch...

Strength From Weakness

My father in law sent me this article and I wanted to share it since I have been dealing with quite a few deaths from illness these past two years and I found it excellently written. It gives a great perspective. The article is by Tony Snow, the president's former press secretary.

Here is a brief intro from the article...

Commentator and broadcaster Tony Snow announced that he had colon cancer in 2005. Following surgery and chemo-therapy, Snow joined the Bush administration in April 2006 as press secretary. Unfortunately, on March 23 Snow, 51, a husband and father of three, announced that the cancer had recurred, with tumors found in his abdomen—leading to surgery in April, followed by more chemotherapy. Snow went back to work in the White House Briefing Room on May 30, but resigned August 31. CT asked Snow what spiritual lessons he has been learning through the ordeal.

And a small section from it...

"The moment you enter the Valley of the Shadow of Death, things change. You discover that Christianity is not something doughy, passive, pious, and soft. Faith may be the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. But it also draws you into a world shorn of fearful caution. The life of belief teems with thrills, boldness, danger, shocks, reversals, triumphs, and epiphanies. Think of Paul, traipsing though the known world and contemplating trips to what must have seemed the antipodes (Spain), shaking the dust from his sandals, worrying not about the morrow, but only about the moment.

There's nothing wilder than a life of humble virtue—for it is through selflessness and service that God wrings from our bodies and spirits the most we ever could give, the most we ever could offer, and the most we ever could do."

I encourage you to read it in its entirety.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Scenes From a Sunday...

Here are some pictures from our adventures last Sunday. Judging by the pictures, I think the kids may have had a better day than Mr. Clean and I at the game LOL!

Saying "goodbye"to Mom and Dad


Taking Grandpa for a drive

Xena at the wheel!

K.Z.'s turn...

C'sa takes a turn!!

After a "hard day's" work

Friday, September 14, 2007

Doing a Happy Dance!

I got a phone call today from a dear friend who in my college days I was attached to at the hip. She moved about 14 years ago or so back to her home state and I went to visit a couple times. Afterward I got married, had kids, lived life and eventually we grew further apart being so many miles away from one another.

She called me today with news that made my heart leap out of my chest with joy. She has committed her life to Christ, letting the Lord take
complete control.

She had battled Him in an area of her life that made her reassess her entire lifestyle. Instead of taking the easy way out and changing things slowly and in her own time, she felt the Lord's urging to change things immediately. She did and walked away from a lifestyle that she now acknowledges was sinful.

Pray for my beautiful friend who now is so full of joy that it is infectious. She is committed to following whatever road on which the Lord puts her. She is truly an inspiration!


In the quest to teach my son how to be a "manly man", and check off a page in the Wolf Cub handbook, Mr. Clean gave K.Z. a lesson in tools and their uses a couple nights ago. One of the lessons involved cutting 3/4 inch pvc pipe.

The next day, K.Z had to show off his newly acquired skills to his adoring fans (sisters) and gladly gave them their own lengths of pipe as a souvenir. All day the girls had been using them to play various games, as musical instruments, as little talking pvc pipe people, and the like.

One use however, I simply could not figure out. C'sa kept popping hers in her mouth, "kazoo style". Having enough of my little one sticking obvious weird Home Depot derived germs in her mouth I told her to take it out.

"But Mom", she pleaded. "It's my fire stick thing!"

My 3 year old has taken up smoking. I am going to hide under the covers...

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Being "in" the World...

Today I had time to sit, chat with friends and reflect on life, love and the pursuit of amazing children while my own were off playing in a "Chuck E. Cheese like" environment.

I have decided we are either going to become Amish (except that whole "no air conditioning thing" really stinks, no pun intended...), move to a commune and raise South American chickens, while my girls wear long flowy skirts and Birkenstocks, with "The Tutor", or just hide behind burqas. Because frankly, I really hate the fact that I have seemingly been more "of" the world than just "in" it lately.

My kids seem to have followed suit (imagine that). Today at this "kid emporium", I happily paid for my kids to have 3 fun filled hours of climbing, bouncing, jumping, running and sliding so I could sit and enjoy the ladies I was with. I decided to forgo the optional "black light mini golf" (I am NOT making this up) and buying the magic gold tokens that allow your child to spend $5.00 on games that shoot out tickets, when redeemed, gets them $0.23 of junk. Can you believe my perfect children had the audacity to actually "whine" several times about the lack of said tokens?

My kids actually believed that they were being deprived of something just because other children had tokens instead of feeling blessed and privileged to be there in the first place where they could climb, bounce, jump, run, slide and eat a crappy lunch with unlimited drink refills for a mere $24.95 plus tax.

Granted, I used my allowance (both Mr. Clean and I have an allowance limit, so don't get your feathers ruffled about me being an oppressed housewife) for this outing, but I could have bought half a weeks groceries with that money and gone to the park for free. Did I mention it was a beautiful 76 degrees with low humidity today?

I obviously have been teaching my "beloved begats" the art of entitlement instead of humility and contentment. It is time for a change.

And about the way they have been eating of late, I will save that for another entry...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Something to Pray About

I do not know what will happen in this situation but I am asking for your prayer.

Mr. Clean and I have been blessed with three amazing children. Due to my PCOS, the road to parenthood was extremely rocky with quite a few pitfalls and heartaches, but in the end I had the privileged to give birth to 3 of the 6 children that I have been pregnant with.

Mr. Clean was one of two children and thought that was the perfect number. He wanted two and we had two. And then there were three. :-) I always wanted 4 or 5, but we decided after C'sa that due to the fact that pregnancy was very hard on me and for other reasons we would call our family complete.

I mourned this decision and prayed that the Lord might persuade Mr. Clean that there just might be room in our family for adoption. When I told him this about a year or so ago, he jokingly encouraged me to pray about it, because the only thing that would ever convince him that more children were an option for our family was Divine Intervention.

I did. The Lord changed Mr. Clean's heart and mind on the matter and the other night he encouraged me to look into adopting an older child (older, meaning not much younger than C'sa, but no older than K.Z.). I was quite floored.

So I am going to do just that. Look into the process, the paperwork and the options. Pray for us that if we are to open our hearts to another child the Lord will make it seriously obvious (neon lights, burning bush, you understand...) since we are both still a little slack jawed at the prospect, yet thrilled if it is in His plan.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Would Someone PLEASE Make it Stop!?!?

I think I have hit the point of being speechless, which is hard for me to do...
another "winner" from A Little Leaven's "Museum of Idolatry"

Hail to the Redskins

Remember being a little kid and going somewhere really special? I went back in time this past weekend and it was a blast.

A lot you you know that I am a native D.C. girl. Born and bred in the Maryland/DC 'burbs and I love my city.

I am also a die hard Redskins fan.
Mr. Clean however, is not. He is a die hard Miami Dolphins fan. Despite this, I married him anyway.

Now normally I have no problem whatsoever with the Dolphins. Mr. Clean likes them, so I will cheer them on when we watch a Dolphins game. With one HUGE exception. When they play the 'Skins. We were in attendance in the stands this weekend to see my boys wallop Miami. They "skinned the fins".

I wish I would have had the
foresight to bring a camera. When going to major sporting events however, I like to travel light and only take necessities, license, cash, lipstick, etc. So I missed the many sights that could help describe the feeling of sheer nostalgia I felt.

The kids hung out with my parents for the day, so the hubby and I could enjoy a stress free day. On the way down we passed our old stomping grounds on the Capital Beltway. The best place on the planet to learn to drive is the Capital Beltway. If you can drive here, you can drive anywhere.

I learned here and have driven the entire 64 miles in one fail swoop while learning to maneuver the behemoth.

By Kenilworth Avenue I was giddy with sheer joy as we made our way to the stadium. We got into our assigned area of the parking lot and in true Redskins style were met by a traffic jam of cars vs. tailgaters. Guess who won?

Fortunately for us a really nice tailgater squeezed our truck in next to theirs (close enough that I had to jump out first, lest I be forever wedged in the vehicle) and we spent the next hour hanging out with them. Thankfully they were a "mixed group" as well to compliment our "inter-team" marriage. A married couple (Redskins fans) had invited their friends who were Dolphin fans.

Skins fans really get into tailgating, but I must admit I was very disappointed to see an off-duty Prince George's County police officer (the county in which the stadium is located) in his cruiser drinking a beer. Fans kept asking to take pictures by the car and use his radio microphone to taunt the nearby Dolphin fans. He obliged while his female companion sat behind the wheel enjoying the air conditioning. Tax dollars hard at work!

Anyway, after our tailgate lunch we got into the stadium where I went from a mild mannered homeschooler to a full on fan. Our seats were 11 rows back from the end field and we were right on the aisle. Plenty of room to whoop and hollar. I wanted to maintain a sense of decorum for Mr. Clean's sake, but the child in
me won out and I was cheering for every 1st down and holding my breath at every pass. And of course, politely applauding each time the defense crushed, I, uh, mean, "stopped", Miami. ;-)

The day could have not gone any better. And I got to spend it with the love of my life. Even if he is a Dolphins fan.


Remember this...

It's not pretty, nor glamorized, nor will it give you warm fuzzies. It was the reality of September 11, 2001. People complained that the media focused on these images and others like it too much. I don't think we see it enough.

Remember the people who were forced to decide whether or not they would burn to death, choke to death or plummet to death.

Remember the firefighters and police officers who sacrificed their lives for the ones they might be able to save.

Remember the willingness of a plane full of people to die in order to save the people in the next target.

Remember that there are families still suffering and heart broken over their loss.

Just remember.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007


After almost being shipped off to the Army today at the ripe old age of 7, (see post below) my boy has redeemed himself. Hanging out with his sisters for a while, all was really really quiet so I decided to go check on everyone. K.Z. and C'sa were creating a masterpiece.
I was simply elated at the creativity...

Ten points if you can tell me what it is. Twenty if you can tell what it is made from (Susie, you are automatically disqualified, since the medium for the piece is from your house).

Spill It...

I just have to know. Does anyone out there in cyberspace have a 7 year old (or close in age) who still can throw a good old fashioned temper tantrum like a three year old?

If not, I am boxing up all of my curriculum, sending my kids off to boarding school and having an affair with the pool boy (okay, just a tad overboard since we don't even have a pool... and the thought of an affair creeps me out).

K.Z. and the girls were having a great day at school today. We had just finished reading about Osiris and his evil brother Set and they were busily coloring a picture depicting the story when someone looked at someone cross eyed or thought a mean thought or stepped on their curls or something, which started an argument.

I decided that they all needed to go to their respective rooms for a couple of minutes and cool off. They were not so happy about this and I heard them hurl some insults at one another from their rooms.

It was pretty much the standard, "You're mean."
"No you're the meanest."
"No, you!"

I ignored it until Xena started to really get upset and cry after K.Z kept slinging and singing the "You are mean" song in the tune of, "nanny, nanny boo boo". Truly the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

Calmly I went upstairs to put out all the small fires and wipe away Xena's tears. Since she was the least ugly with her words and the most upset (and fighting a fever), I tucked her away in my room, cuddled on my bed with PBS to keep her company for a bit.

K.Z. was simply told that he had to do an act of service for his sister since he was being so mean to her and clean up her room. C'sa was to help since she had gotten in on the act as well. So far, so good.

It was after King K.Z. declared that he was only cleaning Xena's half that I decided I had had enough. I told him he was to help C'sa clean all of it. The tantrum commenced.

Screaming, yelling, pouting, crossing arms, telling me "no", the whole nine yards. I kept my cool the whole time and rode out the tantrum wave without killing him. He wound up having to stay in his room until he calmed down after being disciplined for disobedience, then clean the girls' room all before he got a morsel of food for lunch. I think it took all of 7 minutes to clean the room. All after a 45 minute temper tantrum.

The kicker? After he was done, he was back to being my sweet, normal, compliant little man. Please, someone tell me that this is normal!

Monday, September 3, 2007

This Makes Me Want to Hurl...

I saw this while catching up on some of my favorite blogs today. Thanks to A Little Leaven for highlighting this "action figure".

This really bugs me. I know that kids learn more with "hands on" play, but have we gone so low as to mass produce our Saviour and King in a plastic mold?

What do your kids do when handed an action figure or doll? If they are anything like mine, they play with them and make them talk and do things like drive action figure cars and get married (my girls anyway). Do we really want our children playing with a Jesus action figure and making it speak? Pretending it will marry "Barbie" or battle with GI Joe?

It annoys me when people assume to know what God would say or do in any given situation without cracking open the Bible. So we hand "Jesus" to our children to make up scenarios? I realize that this is just a plastic figurine and NOT the King of the Universe, but I am tired enough of people making up their own versions of God to encourage my kids to do it.

Is anything holy and sacred anymore??

Prosperity or "no matter what"?

I snagged this from Mr. Clean's blog. Something to really think about...