Thursday, May 29, 2008

Holiday in Homer

WE LOVE HOMER!!! We packed up last Fri and drove 4-5hours down to Homer, AK to camp on the spit. The Homer Spit is a spit of land that jutts out into the ocean. It is GORGEOUS! The weather was unpredictable and we carried on through 25-35 mph winds, rain storms, and awesome sunny skies. Our tent held up great - Thanks BJ! - and the kids had a grand time. Between, the fishing, beach combing, bike riding, rock throwing, treasure hunting, and s'more making, we were exhausted when we got home!! Homer is so cool. It has these small little businesses on each side of the spit. Anything from boat charters to sweater makers. There are old boat yards, lighthouses, boat harbors, and salty sea air. It is a place all about fishin'.
I believe I have raised a true Alaskan in only 6 months. Of course you have to know that I am talking about Noah. While we were out searching for crabs on the beach, he decides that is the best time to take a dip in the ocean. Well, most of you know that this child LOVES water, if there is water in the vicinity, Noah is in it. Puddles, buckets, ponds, lakes, oceans, ANYTHING retaining water and Noah will take a dip. Caleb too, for that matter. Anyway, I hear "Hey Mom, watch this!" As mothers, we know when we hear a 3 yr old yell these words with sheer excitement something spectacular is about to happen. I look up and see Noah watching the surf and when it comes up to him in a massive rush, he bends over and sticks his head under water. That's great!! I am a proud mom, those yearly swim lessons are paying off, HOWEVER his boots are full of water, his clothes are soaked and now his head, this would be perfectly fine if the water temp wasn't FORTY FIVE!! Add to this the outside temp was only in the low 50's, which in AK can be quite warm, but it wasn't this day in overcast skies. Oh well. It took some coaxing to get him out of the water and in dry clothes. We asked Noah later if he would do it again, to which he replied, "Oh Yeah!"
Caleb loved the water as well. He did not love his puddle boots though. He would only walk in them if I would hold his hand, which was great for me cause I could control how much he got in the water. Caleb doesn't like to be cold so putting his hands in the water was just enough for him. I took all kinds of beach toys, and Caleb would get this bucket, fill it with rocks, and then one by one, toss the rocks into the water. Of course, he had to keep up with Noah too. If he saw big brother (bb) climbing on rocks, well, he had to try it too. This was the same for picking of clams, shells, crabs, etc. If It was so sweet.
I must say that camping here in AK is FAR different than anything I have experienced before. Campfires are nighttime rituals where the sacred s'more making takes place. However, here we had a campfire all day long to take off the chill. Also, there is no nighttime here anymore. It is midnight or later before it gets dark ( and the sun is up before 4am), so camping makes it a little weird when it is 10pm and you are sitting around the fire and the kids are STILL playing cause, "Mommy, it's not dark so it is not bedtime". hee hee! And yes, the sacred s'more making happens in broad daylight, which kinda made it weird for me! Oh and for my camping buddies, there were no s'mownies this time around. I even skipped on the marshmallow and just had toasted graham and chocolate. I KNOW......seriously!
I took the kids on several bike rides up and down the spit. It is about, I would say, 6-8 miles long, with beautiful beach on both sides, back dropped by the breathtaking snow capped mountains. I really could not get enough of the scenery. The end point of the spit is a place called "Lands End", not the clothing company, but a lodge and restaurant. Very fitting.
One couple that went along with us, made up a treasure hunt for the kids. It was VERY elaborate. With decoders, cryptic messages, and a GREAT story. It started with the kids finding a message in a bottle on the beach. Then it lead to clue after clue, after clue. They even got a local store owner in on it and she sold us a piece of the map (pretend sold, of course). So lastly - we were not here for this part, we were already on our way home - the kids end up at the harbor and they drag out of the water a sunken chest full of pirate treasure. This guy, Patrick, made all of the hunt. The coded messages, the story, made the decoders, the map, the treasure chest. It was so professional looking that I asked where he bought it, and then was told he made it! Seriously, I would buy this for a birthday party in a heartbeat. Noah was so into the story and going after "PIRATE BOOTY!! ARRRR!!!!" It was so sad when we had to leave cause Noah kept asking Patrick all these questions about the story trying to put it all together. So, I left my camera so they could make a movie of all the kids pulling out the treasure. Hopefully that will satisfy his curiosity. Thanks for the hunt Hewletts!!
Lucky for Kevin another couple brought a boat and he was able to get in a little fishing. I think the total for the weekend was 12 or 14 Halibut. Kevin was able to catch one. I was so happy! The fresh fish here is so awesome and now we have a ton in the freezer. All it takes is one good fish and your are set in the freezer. He learned how to clean this fish and how to fish for it. I thought they were completely white, but they are, only on one side. Their other side is brown and both of their eyes are on one side. Very strange looking to me. Noah liked looking at the catch and touching the fish - touching them really fast.
So, first camping trip in AK - total F-U-N!!! We are set to camp Seward 4th of July. WoooHOOO!!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Four Four Four Four...........

This is for all of you who have emailed this to me......

A) Four places that I go to over and over: Disney World, camping, church, titans games

B) Four people who e-mail me (regularly): Brandi, Krista, SparkPeople, Becki

C) Four favorite places to eat: Moe's, Glacier Brewhouse, This little cafe in Paris where we loved the breakfast - can't remember the name, at home

D) Four places I would rather be right now: Hawaii, Venice, Disney World, or in the woods camping

E) Four people I think will respond: I am not emailing this cause I am almost tired of getting it

F) Four TV shows I watch all the time: House, Days of Our Lives, Grey's, Lost - and sad to say but my tivo gets a workout

Okay, so if you feel like doing this do it. If not, then don't. I just did not feel like "tagging" someone, and emailing out.

I know, I am a pooper.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Well, where to begin

WHEW!!! So much going on I had to put the blog on the back burner!

Sunday was Mother's day. It was nice. I was treated to a lunch at the Sourdough Mining Company and was given a sterling silver bracelet with some very special inscriptions. I am so blessed to have such a wonderful husband and GREAT kids. I love them so very much.
This past Wednesday my husband was initiated into a group that it takes some time to get accepted in to. He joined the elites of the 30-something club! We celebrated with a great dinner at the Glacier Brewhouse. Kevin's commander is so nice and gave him the day off on his bday. Which turned out perfect since Kev's dad and stepmom were in town. So we all loaded up and drove down to Portage, Ak to hopefully see some glaciers close up. We get to the port to get on the boat and we see a sign saying the first boat wasn't leaving until May 16! Bummer. However, we did get to see some awesome scenery, eagles flying everywhere, animals of all sorts at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, a moose in the parking lot of the evil empire - McDonald's, and just make some good memories together. The kids loved having their grandparents for a week. Noah got up this morning asking for them, still putting it together that they had to go back to TN. So now he wants to go to TN! How sweet.
Oh and in the midst of this week, Caleb gets this weird rash all over himself, so we had to throw in a visit to the pediatrician. Nothing serious, just a common rash, and he looks like he is over it now.
Now, I am focused on our camping trip for Memorial day weekend. We have lots of things to try and find (hopefully at a thrift store for cheap-o). Camping here is going to be very different than camping in SC. I can't wait to see what happens.

Also, I found out that we have another nephew to add to the family! My SIL, Jillina, is having another boy. So her husband, Mark, and Kev can now have the basketball team they have always wanted!! YAY Cabbys!!!

My BFF has started her blog. I am sooooo happy cause I am so far away from her and she is going to be a mommy times 2 in just a few weeks. So now I will be able to keep up with my "nephews" on her blog. YAY!!! Oh how I wish I could be there in person to see them when they are born!

Oh and this week for maintaining the weight loss goals was hopeless. I managed to fit in one night on the treadmill. I was feeling really bummed until I read something that was sent to me this morning. How ironic it comes today. So here is my motivation to all those who read this nonsense that is my blog:

If you forgot to brush your teeth last night, did you decide this morning to throw in the towel and never brush your teeth again? Since you're obviously a slob who doesn't have enough self- discipline to remember to brush your teeth, why bother brushing them at all if you forgot to last night? Of course this is ridiculous thinking. So if you had ice cream for dinner last night, or didn't exercise yesterday, or gained a pound this week, don't throw in the towel! Make a healthier choice for dinner tonight by eating something lean. Go for a short walk. Weigh in again next week.
Just do NOT give up.

Friday, May 9, 2008

My Blog's Reading Level

blog readability test

TV Reviews

So, I see this on a fellow blogger's blog. I thought I would give it a try.

It just confirms that I am doing a great job of keeping it at a level all my readers can understand. No need to thank me.

Something Fun

I've been tagged!

Here's how this one works...

1. The rules are posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and ask them to read your blog.

What I was doing 10 years ago:

I was working for a military contractor in Madison, AL. Living a pretty boring life with the exception of social drama (boyfriends, friends, etc.)

Five things on my to do list for today:
get to the gym
finish cleaning for the "rents" visit
finish the laundry
hang some pictures
be less frustrated with my kids

Things I would do if I were a billionaire:

I would just randomly send people money. I have always wanted to do this. It has always been in my heart to rebuild churches lost by accidents - for example loss from a fire. Everytime I heard someone say "I wish I had the money to..." I would want to anonymously send them the money to do it.

Three of my bad habits:
Interrupting ppl while they are talking or finishing their sentences
I can seriously eat a WHOLE cake or pan of brownies as long as I have some milk - therefore the strong need for the gym.
saying NO too much

Five places I have lived:
New Hope, AL
Huntsville, AL
Altus, OK
Charleston, SC
Anchorage, AK

Five jobs I have had:
Hostess/waitress at a restaurant
Cashier at a retail store
Admin asst in the financial aid office of UAH
Exec Secretary at SCI
Military Contract Specialist for DRC

Five People I Want to Know More About:
Jillina C
Katie J
Michele G
Cryssy R
Brandi G - if she would start a blog!!!!!!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Oh My Apple Bottom

Lets just say that spinning is not for the weaker of bottoms. The class was great! I loved it. However, my apple bottom is bruised!! So, I did not run the tread mill, I opted for the elliptical yesterday instead. Mentally, the elliptical just seemed to be less threatening to bruised apple.
Will definitely do more spinning in hopes that the bottom adjusts, or at least molds itself, and begins to accept the seat!!

Caleb has been and is my cleaner. He likes to get a wipe and clean the front of my cabinets, or the floor, or the table. Not only does he clean, he then takes the used wipe to the trash. He is so proud of himself after a cleaning stint. After the wipe goes in the trash he gets a big grin on his face and yells "YAY!!!"- arms outstretched overhead. So, this morning he was getting a wipe to clean up, but he forgot one thing, to clean something. This time it was get a wipe (which he loves to pull out all the wipes and wad them back up and run away - so I stuff them back into the container) yell YAY! walk over to the trash and toss it in with another YAY!! I have since found all sorts of toys in the trash. We are out today to find a new trash can since the designers of this house left no space ANYWHERE for a normal sized trash can to be stuffed away somewhere.

So I mentioned in my previous post about Kev seeing a black bear on his way to the store .5miles from our house. Well, Monday we take the boys to the playground and on the way home we see another black bear! This time the kids were with us so we all get to see it. Seriously if the bear would have crossed the street he would have been less than .25 miles from our house!!! The wildlife here are emerging from everywhere!! Yesterday we see a moose seriously, next to our house walking through the yard, then on the way home from church we see another about 5-6 houses down!!! Crazy...

Thanks for all the sweet, very encouraging and supportive comments on my last post!! I am so blessed to have such great girlfriends!!!! Even though I am a zillion miles away, sometimes it seems like I have my girls right here with me in the arctic tundra!!! Thanks gals!

Monday, May 5, 2008

21 Days In

I have been doing sparkpeople for 21 days and have lost 6 pounds! Avg. of 2lbs/week. Not too bad. But I wonder if that is too fast? My remedy to my last dilemma - not enough protein - was to go back to the old standard protein shake. I concocted a recipe that fits my needs and am finally adjusting to the taste, again. Drinking an 80cal protein shake is not for the weak stomach - powder, water, 1/2c frozen strawberries (just enough to make it a light pink color). It works.
Only 14 pounds to go!
I am going to be brave and do a spin class tomorrow. Last time my butt hurt so bad! So, I am going out today and getting a pair of bike shorts. They have a little coosh for the toosh. Lets hope that helps. All the spouses in our squadron are getting together, and Regi (the one with the turkey mentioned at Thanksgiving) is the spin teacher. She kicks the guys booties when she does their PT, so I am preparing to not be able to walk out of the gym OR just fall off the bike and die.
I was able to run 2.0 miles at a 10min/ mile pace without dying today. That felt good. I almost felt like I cheated myself when I slowed it down. But that is for me to deal with on Wed. when I meet the treadmill again.

Kevin is home!!! YAY!!! The boys are completely different children that what I had while he was gone. It is amazing what a little extra testosterone in the house can do for toddler boys. It was like the pack leader came home and they could now function properly again! HA! The first day Noah actually sat at the table and not once did I have to repeatedly tell him to eat his dinner. He just did it. And for those of you who know Noah, for him to eat his food willingly is a miracle!
So, Kev and I have been rearranging the house and we have put the boys in a room together. This is taking some adjusting. Noah likes to stay up and sing and talk in the dark, while Caleb just wants to sleep, don't mess with Caleb's sleep, rule #1. Rule #2 don't mess with Caleb and his food. So, Noah has been wanting to talk, Caleb to sleep, and last night Caleb is just fussing at Noah. The first night Noah was telling Caleb to shhh! Now Caleb knows what Noah does and is now screeching at him! It's kinda funny, but we know when Noah is up cause he and Caleb start going at it. They are either giggling or fussing! Caleb is taking really long naps to make up for his night sleep his is missing.
Having Kev home is sooooo nice. I have my BFF back and can actually have some adult conversation at night when the kids go to bed. The kisses and hugs aren't bad either. But it is always nice to have someone to laugh with when the office or seinfeld is on late night.
We have some of the "rents" coming in this weekend. Kev's dad and stepmom. We are looking forward to that. We have not done too much touristy things because of getting settled and adjusting to the snow, etc. So we have a few things planned for when they come. Maybe they will be up for going and visiting some glaciers.
The snow is gone and that means the bears are awake. Kev went to the store that is 1/2mile from our house. Saw a black bear on the way. Yipee! Where is the nearest gun store??!! The moose here are calving, which means they are having babies. So, another thing we have to be careful of. Ahhh spring time in AK. And Noah is dead set on seeing a wolf. great. The road to Denali NP is opening. I am excited about driving up there. Hopefully Kev can get a nice weekend at home and we can go prowl around a bit.
So, alright you are caught up. I am a little less, the lead dawg is home, children are tame (for the moment), wild animals are emerging and multiplying, and I am finally caught up on laundry!!!!!!!