Tuesday, September 30, 2008

And Then We Both Started Working a Third and Fourth Job

Oi vey. Took the family out to buy shoes. Yes, stupidly we did not think to stagger the shoe buying extravaganza. Hubby had been out with the boys on Saturday to get new running shoes for himself (I know, the selfishness; he'd only had his current pair since COLLEGE. Is it a wonder his knees were killing him???). He had the great thought to suck it up and plunk down the gold bullion for shoes for our masses. I am no longer complaining about the costs of registering for sports themselves, now I'm complaining about the SHOES we need for all these sports. Football cleats, basketball shoes, running shoes, ... times three. And of course, I upgraded my running shoes now that the inserts seem to be working and my plantar fasciitis is fading away to a painful memory (thanks Megan for the nursing advice as always!). The bill? $350. At the outlet.

As if that wasn't enough to send me home sobbing in bed with a nice Oktoberfest beer and a big square of bitter chocolate,... these were the two revelations that life, it is a'changin':

1. Jared is wearing a size 9 shoe. In men's. Dude. That's big. No more cute baby shoes for him. Pretty soon, I'll be wearing HIS handme downs.
2. We stopped at McDonald's for dinner and only two out of the four kids ate Happy Meals. We've graduated to the real food menu. No more toys. Now I have to order the Happy Meal to give the kids the toys. Wow.

I think I'll go to bed now and let my body age gracefully in my sleep,....

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tired, oh so tired,...

Well, that's the truth. Too much going on to sit my booty down and blog. So sorry.

The doggy is doing well. We're like two chubby chicks running around the neighborhood while the B asks me over and over again, "What color is that car?" To which I answer, "What PANT color PANT IS PANT it PANT ? PANT"

Flashbacks to Jared in the singleton jogging stroller, learning how to count while mommy ran around and around the neighborhood. I'll never forget him asking me why I breathed so funny. Ha. Now you are 11 and have to endure conditioning in your Junior All American Football. Karma WILL come back and bite you.

I made Kyle PROMISE to do well on his 6 addition test so I could take them all to Coldstone just so I could have marshmallow icecream with brownies in it,.. I did wear my jogging clothes, so that accounts for something, right?

The boys are at 29 Palms playing football. Zach just won 30something to about 12. He did loose a game last week. The girls and I are hangin'..

The B has been totally enjoying her Disney princess handme down gown from my friend Beth's girls. She wore it all day yesterday and I could just kick myself for not taking pictures as she: cleaned the dishes, did the pogo stick with her brother when he refused to dance with her, walked the dog, went in the car to drop off said brother at football, and then went for a stroller ride. It is hard to snap a safety harness around all that tulle! It's a tough life for a princess!

Here is another article I wrote, quite a while ago,... enjoy.

And some commercial breaks from our regularly scheduled programming,...
The boys commencing on their epic mountain bike ride. Unfortunately, the girls didn't fit in the camel backs as I'd hoped. I had to bring them back home with me.....
Kyle at winterball. As you can see, he's getting used to the crowds. : )
Sophia isn't the only one who could benefit from some food from a blender,...

This is one I like to call 'the old married couple.' When I'm old and senile, I'm going to make them live together and take of me.
Not sure what Sophie likes more, watching her brothers play football, or the gold disco pants,..
Zach taking an intermission to do "I'm a little Teapot" It's all part of pyching out your opponent,..

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Five is just not enough,..

so we became foster parents tonight.

Meet Jane, our newest three year old.

It's been very lonely in the house with Max gone. So, we got in contact with our favorite doggie rescue joint, Coastal German Shepherd Dog, and pleaded for a puppy and offered to foster this magnificent dog as well. To, you know, help bring up the young pup.

The puppy will be ready in a couple of weeks. We got Jane today so we could help get her out of a kennel and back into a home environment and get to know her before the house truely becomes out of control with yet another youngster who doesn't sleep through the night, nor is potty-trained. What kind of masachist am I? My husband does wonder. (Yes, Teri, you will be so pleased to know that the human babe did indeed NOT sleep through the night a second time. Now we all seem to be nursing colds, so back to square one with the sleeping thing.)

It's very sad, all the doggies in rescues and shelters. This dog's ears are ravaged and I don't even want to use my imagination to figure out why. It's unbelievable how uncaring people can be.

Plus now we can take part in the Blessing of the Animals at Church with a REAL animal and not just a bunch of rats. And I'm not even talking about my boys,...

Anyway, it's a great organization and if you ever get the whim, send over a donation. They'd great appreciate it.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

And then the baby slept through the night,...

.....And there was much rejoicing in the Richardson household. However, as we all know, tomorrow is another night,...

"I'll show them. I don't need sleep to grow teeth! You should have never taken me through that Ripley's Believe It or Not museum! I want to make my own record! Smallest amount of sleep ever recorded for a human infant! That's me!"

"Grrrr,.. I'll give those sheep a one-two alright,.. a one-two punch outta my crib!"

Is the baby speaking to me through her pictures or am I just sleep deprived and hallucinating? Hm. Thought so.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Oh the limelight! It blinds me!

What do you mean you can't read it? Man, you MUST be getting old. Basically it says blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, "interception by Zach Richardson." In the local paper the Yucaipa, Ca. Mirror. Oh, here's the Internet version:

JAFF Micros lose one, then win one, 25-0 (visit the link soon people, it won't be up forever. This is Yucaipa, you know).

Last Saturday, Sept. 13, the JAAF Division II Jr. Micros evened their record to 1 and 1.After a close loss to Indio, the 7 & 8 year olds traveled to Banning to play the Pass Redskins. The blue offense was lead by Austin Mills with 102 rushing yards followed by Tyler Harland with 91 yards.Behind an offensive line lead by center Mike Rinick was Harriston Tate, Kohl Fromm, Gavin Norris, Blake Brown, Jessie Humphries, Adrian Quintana, W/B Blake Seaton and Q/B Mark Kirkland.
The littlest T-Bird defense held the Redskins to 14 total yards.The gold offense lead by Nick Quass, Andrew Vara, Marc Estrada, Ross Harps, Kadian Meek, Caleb MacGregor, Colton Tuley, Colby Mushinski & Jake Fermanian ran the ball very well. Helping the strong defense was Owen Fromm, Matt Crengros, Christian Jarish, Drew Hammond, Chase Samuelsen and Zach Richardson, who also had an interception.Final score: Yucaipa 25, Pass 0.

Yep, we're gettin' ready for that Pro Bowl.

I'm just a posting FIEND!

Still Gainfully Employed

Here's an article in Imaging Notes I wrote a while back and well, finally remembered I wrote it.

Forget Underdog, Downward Dog Saves the Day!

So I've been battling a nasty little case of plantar fasciiatis (sp all over that thing please) since the In laws visited in July. At first I thought the pedicurist had done some bad juju on my foot. But it felt better as I eased into my little jogs about suburbia, so no matter. Then, as I had to get up, oh every 45 minutes during the night to soothe the savage beast in my bedroom (aka, Sophia) the hobbling got worse, the pain got worse, it felt like someone had a cigarette lighter burning the arch of my foot and it wouldn't go away. I don't do well with chronic pain. I ignored it, until I couldn't ignore it anymore and finally went to see the good ol' doc. I can't imagine a life with no exercise; ask hubby and he'll tell you it's the only thing that keeps me on an evenkeel since he won't pay for medication. Darn him. Since the babe sleeps at the very times I can finally get out of the house, and also has a bad case of stranger anxiety, the gym is pretty much out. It's 250 degrees here, so the rowing machine, the 'CONCEPT II Evil for me to do' machine in my backyard is in direct sunlight when the girls are nestled snug in their beds for naps, and I'm afraid I'll light a fire with the friction of the chains as I pretend to row across concrete without actually going anywhere. The MOST BORING EXERCISE EVER INVENTED. Not enough room in the TV area to shadow kick box, I gave away my aerobic step pre-Indonesia so that leaves me with the double jogging stroller. I can't be defeated by a stubborn tendon!
I certainly fit the profile for this injury - getting old, gained a bit o' weight (thanks girls!), feet not structurally sound (as if a size 12 wasn't ENOUGH torture to live with in this lifetime.)
So, I got some good stretches from runnersworld.com, listened to my doc and bought a shoe insert, gave up my flip flop addiction and put all those cheap and cute but crappily made Payless shoes in the back of the closet and it started to get better. Then our friend came over and showed me some yoga moves and that really started things progressing. I'm doing downward dogs all over the house (that sounds kind of illicit, but it's not) and the stretch in the tendon is amazing, I'm telling you, all my running friends (momcolumn!). So, thanks for the stretch. Anything to keep me out of Birkenstocks, I'm all for. Hurrah.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Why men don't take messages

** sent to me by my very cool SIL.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Go Yucaipa!

The boys with their NO. 1 Fan!

Getting ready - this isn't Jared, can you believe it? They grow so fast,..

Jared giving the opposition a big bear hug.

Jared running.

Zach looking mighty tough.

I'm embarrassed to say these are all from their scrimmages. I'll get photos today of them in their official uniforms, complete with gold disco pants!

Today we are 'away.' Thankfully they are breaking us in slowly and 'away' means 15 minutes away. For the all day football marathon (Zach plays at 8am and Jared at 12pm) we will be on the field from 7 until 2:30 (I'll try and get their by 8 with the rest of the brood), but here is what we have to bring: EZ Up (which, mark my words people, really isn't easy; especially when your engineering husbans buys the steel framed one, for 'durability.' I'm sorry, I didn't know he was afraid the Cal. sun would like, melt a less masculine structure; or he's afraid of falling asteroids or something, while we are watching our children play various and sundry sports.) Anyway, the EZ Up, a cooler, a bag o' food, diaper bag, stroller, car seat, armload of toys, three big water jugs, four chairs, two blankets and oh yeah, the kids, to get our efforts' worth WE MIGHT AS WELL LIVE AT THE FIELD FOR A WEEK.


Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday Ramblings

First, HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDMAW! (And I don't mean Jason's Grandmother!) My mother has a birthday today. Last year we were onsite to hang all sorts of party decorations and make a yummy, if not too attractive, carrot cake (that's my specialty you know.)

And a belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY to GRANDPA R! He had a Bday last week. Hear he hasn't gotten the cards I forced the kids to make before school. We'll make new ones. I won't try and remember your address from (sleep deprived) memory. I wonder if I mailed the Blockbuster movie to you we can't find? Great,...

Kid musings -

Jared has been sleeping in late, which gives me the opportunity to throw the 2 year old in his room and close the door in order to wake him up. (MUCH more annoying than splashing cold water on some one who's asleep, I can assure you of that). He asked me the other day why he has been sleeping in late. Then his eyes got wide in realization and he groaned: "Oh noooo! I'm becoming a teen ager!" He is almost 12. The boys treat teendom as if its some sort of real life invasion of the body snatchers. Ha.

Packing lunch is making me tear my hair out already because no one wants to eat anything, and I'm sorry if Johnny's mommy brings him Weinershnitzel every day for lunch. I guess I just don't love you as much as that. So sorry. Jared was making cheese and crackers, but then told me he didn't like it anymore because the crackers 'do the worm' by lunch time. I guess packing cheese and then the crackers seperately is just too much effort.

The boys saw a Yo Gabba Gabba show with Tony Hawk on it, so now they are in that uncomfortable place of wondering if Yo Gabba Gabba can really be that cool,.. so now do they have to stop making fun of it???

Sophie has popped another tooth so she's awful again at night. She is now nine months old and thinks she's just too dang old for baby food. So pedestrian to have your food strained, you know.

I'm sure I was going to write something else, but I hear the feral child upstairs and must run. Happy Friday!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

In Memory of 9/11

Today is a day of reflection for me and the events that happened seven years ago in NYC and Wash. DC. The bombing of the World Trade Center and those lost as a result of that will always be in my heart.

It is so vivid to me, because Kyle, my middle child, had been born barely a month before. I was in Washington state with three little kids, packing up for the trekk back to Egypt, where we where living at the time. We were moving from the metropolis of Cairo to Luxor, where hubby was heading up a sewage and water treatment project in the city. Basically, giving people who had no toilets, a toilet. I was flying my parents over in a thinly veiled 'thanks for letting me shack up with you for a few months while I gave birth to my kid' which as really a 'I really need some helping hands to get me from Olympia, Wash. to Luxor, Egypt with three boys aged 4, almost 2 and two months old.' (yes, I look back at some of my decisions and think WHAAAA????)

Needless to say, I'll never forget my father running into the room I was using and telling me about the bombing. He had been on his way to a meeting, had turned around and came directly home. I had said good bye to my husband around August 18th, so ready to see him again in two weeks, and now, wouldn't see him again until Halloween. At the time, I had no idea when I'd see him again, or which continent.

That event changed the course of our lives, we had to move from Luxor, where we would have been the only American, okay, caucasion, family in the 'city.' We didn't know until November where we would be living, and that turned out to be the Philippines.

The project hubby was working on, a large earth fill dam to generate power, had lost those who were working on certain design aspects; the company had been located on one of the floors of the WTC.

And very importantly, Kyle's Godfather lost his brother, who was a police officer in NYC while he was attempting to assist those in the tower to escape.

For these reasons, and the fact that for all the travels I do, I always love to come home because it feels safe and 9/11 took some of that from me, I will never forget this day. May we never forget that day and how lucky we are to live in a country where we are free. May no one ever take that from us.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

How to Serve Kid

Sunday we had a good friend over for dinner. Of course, with the luck we seem to be having (car dying, gas heater dying, fridge dying,... yada yada) the air conditioner died. Which reminded us of our wonderful trip to Indonesia and how sweltering it was when the power would go off. Good thing our friend is a yoga expert and lives in the desert, I think he was pretty comfortable.

Whenever we have someone over for dinner we break out the hurkin' Silver Spoon cookbook. You know, the one comprehensive Italian cooking tome that someone took 100 years to painstakingly put all the recipes anyone's Italian grandmother ever made and stick it in one place. It wasn't until a few years ago this wealth of culinary knowledge was available translated in English.

Hubby got it for me as a 'just because' present. Instead of flowers I got a 40 pound cook book. "Just because' he's crazy for Italian food. "Just whip it out and make something once and a while," he instructed.

Which is a fine idea, except that being the mother of five, with a job and a busy schedule shuttling the next generation's Olympic athletes around, my cooking has devolved to only include things that are made with hamburger, a crockpot, cream of something soup, or a bag of greens that can be dumped on a plate and dressing added. Voila, dinner.

We decided against slaving over a hot stove since the internal temperature of the house was about 200 degrees and instead we grilled.

Now, we know we have a true friend when they keep coming back to the house to be fed by us, Laurel and Hardy of the cooking set. After four hours of grilling ribs on the barbie at low heat, hubby catches an unwarranted amount of smoke escaping from the covered grill out of the corner of his eye. Ribs? Burnt to a crisp. Thankfully we had some chickin in the fridge. And this is after I poured Champagne on the poor man's leg. The last time he came over, I'm afraid I pelted him with carrots I was mixing into the mashed potatoes (Sienfeld's wife has nothing on me - deceptively delicious? As if the concept of mixing nutrient rich foods into kid friendly ones had never crossed another mother's mind.) using my stand mixer that was set to the highest setting when I plugged it in. Carrots went a flyin'.

Always the good sport, our friend attacked the cripsy ribs and the two of us decided the bottom rack wasn't too bad. Anything to help out a hubby with a bruised ego. I commented, "This is how I remember ribs. My dad made them this way all the time." To which he replied, "Your dad is dead. And he died at an early age." Touche.

Anyway, the ribs were yummy. I don't like fat. I'll cut a one inch border around steak fat which leaves hubby tearing out his hair at all the wasted meat. And I tell ya, nothing cooks down the fat on some beef ribs like catching them on fire. Excellent.

So, I put the Silver Spoon cookbook away. But not after thinking of all the other great uses for this incredible encyclopedia of all things deemed edible in the great country of Italy:

* No need for a medicine ball when I'm doing my ab work, the Silver Spoon works great.
* Doorjam
* Great for lifting your spirits when you need something hilarious to think about. For example, the recipe for frog soup - main ingredient? 24 frogs.
*Wonderful for that last resort to get kids to do their chores. I just open it to the 'KID' section and leave it laying around. Braised leg of KID, Rack of KID,... they'd better shape up or it's Hansel and Gretel time at the Richardson household.

P.S. Aircon is fixed! And unlike every other appliance in this house, it was only a little, easy, relatively non-expensive thing that needed to be fixed. After whining to the 90 year old woman who answered the phone at the air repair shop yesterday morning ("We called two places yesterday and no one called back! I have five kids and one of them is an infant! AAAGH!") The repair man was out not between 9 and 12, but at 8:30. Since no kids had gone to school, I had not had time to make myself presentable to the non-Richardson world. Between my crazed hair and mascara under my eyes, I think I looked appropriately melted.

Hmmm,.. what'll go out next? The oven? That's okay,.. .I've got a grill!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Max We'll Miss You

Sorry I haven't posted lately, been a little sad around here. We had to put our beloved pup down on Saturday. He'd been fighting something no vet between here and Washington could figure out. He'd had blood tests, been on many pills and special foods. He wasn't eating, then he would eat, then wouldn't eat, then lately I don't think he could eat. The vets all think maybe it was an auto immune deficiency because he was the runt of the litter. Being a rescue dog, we don't know anytihng of his history so it's all just a big guess.

As if that wasn't bad enough, in June he woke up with a limp and even after many x-rays showing nothing broken and a cast for two months, he still limps. No life for a dog who loved to run, mess around and follow his people everywhere they went.

It's so hard to loose a pet. The boys are recovering, but I think it'll be a while before they don't hurt.