Thursday, January 29, 2009

In Memory Of....

My blog today is dedicated to my beautiful Aunt Karen who went to be with the Lord exactly one year today. At just 47 years old, she was taken from us and taken to heaven where I know she looks down on her family and smiles, knowing that we all miss her so much but are celebrating her life and time here with us rather than dwelling on our loss. She suffered with Ovarian Cancer for I believe was about 2 years.

I miss her so much.

This might be a really crazy thing but it's still not real for me. Even a year later, I still go to family events and expect to see her smiling face. When out and about I have had to take second looks when I see someone who looks like her. I dream about her and it's so real. But reality is, she is not here.

A couple weeks ago all the family gathered to celebrate her life once again and spread her ashes on her property where she was the most happy. It was a somber, yet humbling time. But it still doesn't make it real for me.

Today, as I go about my day I will be thinking of her and be reminded once again, how precious our lives are. How we should never go a day without telling our loved ones just how much we love them. Forgiving, caring, loving and cherishing. Every moment. For we never know what tomorrow will bring. She will never, ever be forgotten. I love you Aunt Karen

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

16 Months

Carter is turning 16 months old today. He is the funniest thing ever. I enjoy watching him learn new things everyday. He is really starting to come into his own these days...running. Yes, running everywhere. Especially in the opposite direction when he has something he isn't supposed to or he sees the diaper changing materials! His vocab hasn't really expanded much more beyond Mama, Dada, cracker, cookie, mine mine mine, pee pee, this, that and who is it? LOL!!! Everything is a cracker. All food at least. It's hilarous. He gives high fives and knuckles and is starting recognize body parts such as his pee pee (oh boy), the belly button of himself and others and noses! He really likes to squeeze them as hard as he can. He brings a certain light and laughter to the day of each member of our family. The girls are really getting a kick out of watching him learn things, it amazes them how fast he picks up on stuff. Happy 16 month birthday Carter!

Life is too precious

I am so in love with all of my kids. They are the best things that EVER happened to me! Today a young life was lost. There was a tragic car accident in which a local 7 yr old girl so quickly lost her life. I don't know the family, nor the girl but for some reason this has touched my heart so deeply. I cried for her off and on all day. It made me think, what if that had been me? What if those girls in the car were mine and one minute they were here on Earth with me and the next minute gone? Why did God choose to take such a young life today? I can't answer any of these questions but I can tell you what will become of this for me. When I got home today I hugged each of my kids and told them just how much they are loved. I have made a promise to myself to tell them over and over everyday just in case that next moment is my last moment with them. My heart is aching for the mother of this girl who is surely blaming herself at this moment and grieving like nobody who hasn't lost a child will ever understand. What was the last thing she said to her daughter and will it haunt her forever? I have decided to relax a little more and don't sweat so much of the small stuff.....for tomorrow anything can happen. And if something does I don't want anyone to leave me with my last words being anything other than I love you.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Have you ever?

Here's a little ditty going around the blogosphere. You are supposed to highlight the things you have done, and supposedly this is a list of things that people should do in life before they die. Or something like that. Either way, I think things like this are fun, even if I do not like someone telling me what I need to do to be fulfilled. Let's have some fun! The stuff in red is the stuff I have done.

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band (My brother says I couldn't carry a tune in a bucket with a lid on it. Nuff said.)
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/ world
8. Climbed a mountain (Does a hill count? Of course, our hills would be mountains to someone in, say, Kansas!)
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped (No, thanks. Rubber bands break.)
12. Visited Paris (Does Paris in Vegas count?)
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea(Gee, that sounds safe.)
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked(No, thank you, I choose to live)
23. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run (does on the Wii count?)
32. Been on a cruise (ok, going on one in 12 days, it counts people)
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied(It never should take money to be truly satisfied. We're broke, but I am satisfied.)
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo's David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal in a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving/ snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served in a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Gotten flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood/ platelets
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi concentration camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the changing of the guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Been to the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone's life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a lawsuit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

OK, if you want to, play along! Have fun!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Rants and Raves

Are we all familiar with Craigslist famous column Rants and Raves?? There are some funny people on there and some obnoxious people on there. I am feeling the need to start my own Rants and Raves.....if you don't mind. I have some Ranting AND Raving to do. I don't know if it's because I am going on week #3 without TJ, or just plain antsy today but writing always makes me feel goes.

Re: Driving
Why oh why must people drive with their blinker on for 20 minutes from Lynden to B'ham? Just bugs me. You never know if they are really turning or not and it just bothered me today on the drive into town. I mean was his music really up loudly enough to not hear the clicky clicky on the dashboard the whole way??

And on the way home I had the pleasure of being behind a Toyota Tundra with NO, and I repeat NO brake lights. The sun is shining and it's hard enough to see when someone is breaking but to flat drive without brake lights to me is just plain irresponsbile and dangerous. I don't tailgate, I leave a few cars distance between me and him and I found out about his no brake lights when my front bumper came within an inch of his while he slammed on his brakes for the car in front of him to turn left. JERK!!!!!!!!!!

And on to Raves.......I ventured into the mall today because I had several returns to do from Christmas that I had been putting off. With money tight I was only going to return, not buy. But when you walk into Kohls and see Carters brand footed jammies for Carter for $3.80 I would be stupid not to pick up a pair. He needs them and why spend $18.00 when I can get them for $3.80? Old Navy....once again. Jeans for the girls for $6.99 then 50% off that? I'd be stupid not to.

So my rave for the day is great sales at the mall.

Oh and the sun. I love you sun. You make me happy. I am so glad you are still here. Please never go away.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Day in History

So as well all know, and will never forget thanks to the media, today our new President Barack Obama was sworn into office. I got up this morning and turned on the TV and forgot what today was. I was very quickly reminded. I have to admit that I am a pretty conservative republican and Mr. Obama's plan for the next 4 years don't exactly entice me. I am skeptical of any government who bails out crooks and of all people, auto makers. Yes, I am bitter about the bailout because I know if something happens to my family and we lose our home and everything we have the good ole US of A is NOT going to be there to bail my ass out now are they??

Anywho, after a while I decided to look at this as an opportunity. A wonderful opportunity for Mr Obabma to prove so many of us wrong. I will embrace him and his changes and pray that our country and economy can stay afloat in these hard times. Although I have a feeling it is going to be a bumpy long ride. I cannot dwell on the things I cannot change and he is going to be the President for the next 4 years and there is not a darn thing I can do about it!

I hope that he can create jobs and solve this mortgage crisis. I hope that he can help more people get medical insurance without messing with the way the system already is. I hope that he does not raise taxes, cause well that will just piss me right off. I hope alot of things. But most of all I hope that he will be a unique President.....I hope that the 44th President will go down in history as the first to actually keep his promises and follow through on his plans.

Here's to a new year and a New President. Let's all hope and pray for good change and health for everyone!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

What a week

Well I am almost at 2 weeks without TJ. He left on the 5th and isn't returning home until Feb. 4th. When he is gone I get lazy, especially during the winter when the weather is nasty. I am so busy working and taking care of the kids that on my days off I don't want to do anything. But today the sun came out! It was all the motivation I needed to get out the garbage bags and de-clutter my post Christmas house.

I have to say Carter was a big help. He likes throwing things away. We filled a bag just upstairs alone and got those bedrooms shiny clean! We also went through all the clothes and filled up 3 big Costco sized Huggies boxes with clothes to take to the consignment store. Tomorrow I am tackling my closet. That is the scariest one of all. There is just something about doing this that makes me feel so good today.

This week school was back to normal. Thank goodness. We had cheer night on Tuesday, Adventure Club last night and cheer practice today after school. It's been a busy last few days but it does help my days go so much faster when they are filled with things to do.

Tomorrow, I am helping out in Malaya's classroom and then coming back to finish my post-Christmas cleaning and hopefully get some time to relax while Carter naps. I am so glad it is suppossed to stay sunny out for the rest of this week and the weekend. It keeps me happy after not seeing the sun for almost a month!

I have missed you sun!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Rah, Rah, Rah

The girls are doing Lynden Lions "Mini-cheer" this year and it has been great. Every Thursday they get to practice with the real highschool cheerleaders after school. They learn cheers and chants and even dance routines. It so cute and they both love it. Following right in their mama's footsteps! Mind you, this was something they asked me to do...I am not attempting to relive my glory days through them or anything but it has been fun and I love when we all do it together at home.

Last night, the young girls had the opportunity to cheer at the HS basketball game during halftime. They both did wonderful.....I am so proud! The lighting in the gym however, bouncing off the bright yellow walls was not the greatest so I only have a couple of pictures that turned out. I will try to get more at their next performance on July 30th.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A clean house?? I don't think so.

Ever since we bought our first house I have been the spokeswoman for cleanliness. I will admit, I might be a little OCD but I love a clean house. I can't stand dirty dishes in the sink, laundry in the basket or garbage in the garbage cans. I can tolerate toys just fine as long as they aren't in my walking path. Before we had Carter, it was so easy. Now I have this little walking tornado who I believe was put on this earth to destroy anything in his path. I fold laundry, he is right behind me unfolding. I put dishes in the dishwasher, he is right there taking them back out! You get the picture. But I have come to terms with the fact that I am going to have a messy house. He is just learning and playing and I love to watch him discover new things as he undo's my day of hard work. I have been so blessed to be home alot with Carter since he was born and I didn't realize how much I was missing out on. Make messes little one, these days will be over faster than I want them to!

Yesterday, I got something out of the fridge, tapped the door closed as usual but about 2 minutes later when I came back into the kitchen this is how I found my loving son............

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Favorite Things Party

Last night, Tiffiny and I threw a Favorite Things Party. Tiff hosted at her house since she is host extraordinare! We had 11 girls, each of which brought with us our favorite thing. Same idea as Oprah's show, but on a much smaller scale. Some ladies brought one item and some bought several. After some good food and fun games, we each presented our favorite things and explained why they were our favorite. Some were emotional and some were really funny. But what a great night. I went with 10 packages of my thing and came home with a great basket full of items I have never used! Thanks to everyone for sharing their stuff. Thanks to Tiffiny for opening her home to us, spending the day cleaning and getting her house ready to host. And for everyone who brought was a great night and I cannot wait for the next one!

Just a few of the gifts

Jenn's most adorable polka dot boxes

Emily and Tiff sampleing the food

Julie, Michelle and Heidi


The wonderful spread of goodies

The take home totes

My favorite things....B&BW Anti-Bacterial soap and Breathe body lotion.

Friday, January 9, 2009

This one is for Tiffiny.

Every week I look forward to reading Thursdays with Tiffiny. She makes my, what seems like a complicated life, look like normal! Love ya Tiff! She encourages us to share our weeks on here so here I go! now that I have alot of extra time on my hands I can!

I am thankful as well that the snow has melted and the rain has stopped. I can see the sun today!

I am thankful to not be in my waders sweeping and shoveling water and mud out of my garage like some of my very unfortunate neigbors.

I am thankful that the holidays are over and somewhat of a chaotic order has been restored at my house. When school is finally back on time everyday it will be perfect!

I am thankful for my husband who is away for a whole month to make sure that we are taken care of.

Today I am making goodies for a girls party at Tiff's tonight, finishing up the baskets and cleaning the house.

I am watching Carter unroll an entire roll of wrapping paper just so he can smack his sisters with the empty cardboard roll.

This week has been a strange one...missed days, late days. My hrs at work were cut down to 18 so financially I am taking any tips on how to live on a budget! I am enjoying the extra time at home with my babies and making the best of a bum situation.

I am looking forward to girls night at Tiffiny's tonight.

The sun coming back.

Watching my girls cheer at the basketball game on Tuesday night.

And most of all getting the heck outta dodge on Feb. 7th when TJ and I take the girls on a cruise through the Western Carribean.

Well that's my week in a nutshell.....more to come next week!

Monday, January 5, 2009

New Years at the Great Wolf Lodge

We took the kids to the Great Wolf Lodge in Grand Mound, WA for New Years and what a place it is! They have everything....hotel, arcade, treasure hunts, restuarants and the biggest and best indoor water park I have ever seen! The kids had a great time with their cousins. Carter wasn't too sure about the place, it was very loud inside the water park. I think his history of ear infections and the tubes make his ears a little sensitive. But he sure loved the arcade! My favorite part was that while the kids are playing in the water the parents can walk up to the snack bar and get a beer! What a great idea. Parents chill with a brew while the kids entertain themselves in the wave pool, playing water sports or on the gigantic howling thunder waterslide! If you haven't had a chance to go, I suggest you make a trip down!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Happy New Year

Ah, finally. A moment of silence. The kids are playing, dishes are done, laundry is folded. TJ is gone for the month of January.....yes a month :-( But it's quiet. Ahhhh.. My New Years Resolution is to not be so "snappy" this year. I find myself snapping at the kids when I get stressed out and I am not going to do that anymore! We had a great holiday season and New Years but I am ready for normality back in the Erdmann household. School (which is an hour late tomorrow due to weather) STILL, sports and activities and no more staying home all day bored with nothing to do so all they do is fight! I am done with Christmas vacation!

We have so much to look forward to. We have an upcoming family vacation on Feb. 7th. My big girl Natalya is turning 7 next month and then Malaya will be 9 this April. Where has the time gone? I swear Malaya was just a baby. I am looking forward to Spring soccer and watching the girls cheer at basketball games. And maybe some warmer weather. I love snow, but just the first snow. The rest of this junk can go away.

I hope everyone had a great New Years and we wish you all the best in 2009. Let's hope this year is better than 2008 was!