Sunday, August 31, 2008

Feeling So Out Of Touch

We have arrived at our destination, well almost. We are in temporary housing for a couple of weeks until our house is ready, so it feels a little like vacation still. Our trip was fun and exhausting, I hope to share some with everyone soon! I have so many things to write about. So look for more posts coming soon ... some adventures to look for:

Our Trip - Five kids, four cats, grandma, a 26 foot U-haul going over 1000 miles from home!
Boomsday - WOW!
Swimming at the hotel pool!
New city, do you know where the hospital is?
Meeting new friends, what a small world we live in!
Musical Beds!
A family of seven, living in a hotel room built for three!

Thanks to everyone who has not given up and has stopped by my blog! Hopefully soon I will be back to post and to comment on every ones wonderful blogs. I have been reading and trying to keep up a little but have not had the time to comment. It is amazing how much time this takes. But I am so thankful to have a little outlet to read once in awhile. For what it is worth, thank you all who are understanding that I will be back soon!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Annoying Word Verification

Annoying word verifications, sometimes these are quite easy to read and have three to five letters,not too bad but lately they seem to be getting longer and more distorted! I spend quite a bit of time sitting here trying to figure out what the heck I should type in. It is like some awful high school test where you have to color in the circle to the correct answer and once you start there is no turning back ... I get all tense and what if I type in the wrong answer then it kicks back my comment -- AARRGGHH!!!

So I understand that these safety measures are for people who do not want automated comments on their blogs. I guess I do not have to worry about this as my blog only receives a few hits ... but does anyone else find these word verifications annoying? I am always happy when I can comment with out doing this awful test!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

On The Road


We are officially on the road, or at least I hope so ... I am getting this ready to post while we are traveling, so I can only assume that we are actually on the road.

If all has gone according to our plan we left yesterday to move 1000 miles from the place I have called home since the day I was born to some place I have never even visited. You can read more about our Big Move but the bottom line is we are leaving Vermont for Knoxville, Tennessee. Dan's job was transfered and we are very excited for this opportunity to move to warmer climate and see what a new place has to offer.

So please wish us luck and hopefully our computer will be up and running soon!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy Birthday Sam!

My Dearest Sam:

Today you turn one, where did this year go ... it has been filled with lots of craziness but through it all you have been your cute little self. Growing and learning! I wish I could stop time but then, where would I stop it ...

At the moment when you first presented yourself to us, with you wrinkly little self!


At the moment that you cuddle close and sleep for hours each day!


At the moment that your cheeks were almost too heavy for you to pick up!


At the moment that you realized that you could get into things!


At the moment that your smile melted my heart!


Or at this moment, as we celebrate your first year of life!


Who could decide just when to stop time, so I guess we keep moving forward and cherish every moment that we have.

Happy Birthday with all my love, Mommy

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Fancy High Tech Signature

I learned something new ... giving truth to the fact that apparently you "CAN teach an old dog new tricks" I am not sure that it is really high tech but it is fun. I now have a signature on my posts and it automatically is inserted -- YEAH!

I really can not take the credit for this. The other day I was over at I Wasn't Born A Soccer Mom and she had just learned how to do this also and had a link! By the way nice signature Anji! Apparently she had seen how to do signatures over at Sasha Says. So I scooted right over there, where she has step by step instructions using this website: My Live Signatures. If you are interested go check it out ... it is easy, I DID IT!!!! Or at least I think I did, we will see when I post this if it actually works!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Say No To Plastic Bags


Five Flower Mom has pretty much been a fun loving blog about my children, a few rants of mine but basically light hearted 'stuff'. But today a conversation was started on a group that I participate in about the use of plastic bags and it encouraged me to tackle this issue. Our family has taken a long hard look at trying to eliminate plastic from our house, especially plastic that touches our food! There are so many hazards and the bottom line is that plastic does NOT go away, after a very long time it breaks down to smaller particles but it is still in our environment. I will be the first to admit that I was oblivious to the impact of plastic and particularly plastic bags on our Earth! I really thought that I could just recycle them and I was doing my part ... the problem is that it costs more and there just is not the demand for recycling of plastic bags. The Earth Resource Foundation. Campaign Against the Plastic Plague (CAPP) has a lots of great information. Here is just one section for you to look at ... but please go look at the additional information on their website.

"Plastic bags are everywhere! Everyday, we are handed countless plastic bags: when we go to the grocery store, retail clothing store, book store, restaurants, etc. Yes, sometimes, plastic bags are convenient, as they are water resistant and light and inexpensive compared to paper bags. Most of the time, plastic bags are superfluous and avoidable. It seems as though store clerks are often eager to hand out plastic bags for any and all kind of purchases. Sometimes, a plastic bag is just not necessary for that apple you are about to eat or that soda you are going to drink right away. Here are some questions we should ask ourselves whenever we are handed a plastic bag:


  • Do I need to take as many plastic bags in supermarkets?
  • Do I need a plastic bag for an item purchased that is already well packaged by the manufacturer?
  • Could I bring my own shopping bag when making purchases?

Plastic bags are the cause of major environmental concerns. Statistics show that we are consuming more and more plastics every year. It is estimated that an average individual uses around 130 plastic bags per year. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1974750.stm)

Most of them go straight to our landfill and a very small percentage of plastic bags are actually recycled. A reduction in our use of plastic bags is essential in solving the environmental problems stemming from them.

Here are the reasons why you should limit your consumption of plastic bags:

  1. Plastic bags and packaging account for a major part of our waste in landfills. More importantly, plastic bags are one of the top items of litter on our community beaches, roads, sidewalks, and vegetation along with cigarette butts and Styrofoam. Plastic bags are light and hard to contain. Because of their light weight, plastic bags fly easily in wind, float along readily in the currents of rivers and oceans, get tangled up in trees, fences, poles, and so forth, and block the drainage. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/1849302.stm)
  2. Plastic bags are made from a non-renewable natural resource: petroleum. Consequently, the manufacturing of plastic bags contributes to the diminishing availability of our natural resources and the damage to the environment from the extraction of petroleum. At the same time, plastics are hazardous to produce; the pollution from plastic production is harmful to the environment. Finally, most plastic bags are made of polyethylene - more commonly known as polythene - they are hazardous to manufacture and are said to take up to 1,000 years to decompose on land and 450 years in water. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1974750.stm)
    The fact that plastics are not biodegradable means that the plastic bags in circulation and future production of plastic bags will stay with us for a long time: in our landfills, oceans, streets, and so forth.
  3. Countless plastic bags end up in our ocean and cause harm to our marine wildlife. Many marine animals and birds mistakenly ingest plastic or become entangled and choke in plastic bags that is floating around. For instance, environmentalists have pointed out that turtles often mistake plastic bags for jellyfish and invariably swallow them. It is estimated 100,000 marine mammals die each year because of plastic litter in our ocean in the North Pacific. (www.algalita.org)
    Land animals seem to be victims as well. In countries such as India, cows are mistakenly ingesting plastic bags on the streets as they are scavenging for food and end up choking or starving to death, as the plastic cannot be digested.
    (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1974750.stm)
  4. There is virtually no market for recycling plastic bags. Very few recycling centers accept plastic bags because they are of little recyclable value. Although your local supermarkets collect used plastic bags for recycle, very few are actually recycled. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/1329600.stm)
  5. On the other hand, most paper bags are made from recycled paper. There is a profitable market in paper recycling and the paper bags can be used and recycled. In addition, this promotes "Buying Recycled" which is the only way that recycling efforts will ever become successful
  6. There are many cost effective and convenient alternatives to plastic bags. Paper bags hold more than plastic bags. One paper bag has the capacity of as many as three to four plastic bags. The best alternative to using plastic bags is using cloth bags and degradable bags.
  7. Businesses will save on cost in providing plastic bags when consumers use less of them and bring their own bags.
  8. The international crisis, which plastic bags are creating, is indicated by the fact that most nations recognize the problem and are making strong attempts to eliminate the use and productions of plastic bags. Many countries in Europe and Asia are attempting to eradicate plastic bags. Some are banning plastic bags altogether while others are implementing a tax on plastic bags to decrease their use. In Bangladesh, plastic bags have been banned completely since early 2002. They were found to have been the main culprit during the 1988 and 1998 floods that submerged two-thirds of the country. The problem was that discarded bags were choking the drainage system. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1974750.stm)
    In 2001, Bombay council also eliminated the use of plastic bags to prevent them from littering the streets and clogging up the city's sewerage system. As a result, merchants have switched to recycled paper bags and litter in the city has been reduced considerably.
    (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/1329600.stm)
    In Ireland, a tax on plastic bags was introduced. Essentially, each plastic bag handed out costs the consumer an extra 15 cents. After the tax scheme began in March 2002, it is estimated the plastic bags available at stores have been decreased by 90%.

These are great success stories from various countries working out the problem of plastic bags. They have set examples on how a ban or a tax on plastic bags may work. Consequently, other nations such as the United Kingdom are considering implementing similar regulations.

The most effective way of reducing the amount of plastic litter in the environment is to reduce our consumption. As consumers, we should not wait for our governments to tackle the problem of plastic bags. Change ultimately comes from everyone be it from to law restrictions of our government or from our own volition. Moreover, the most important contribution to such a campaign must come from the consumer.
http://www.mindfully.org/Berkeley/Berkeley-Plastics-Task-Force.htm
-Report of the Berkeley Plastics Task Force"

If you are still interested click here and get a little more information on the dangers of plastic bags! So are there better ways? I think there are and as with anything we can not all change the world ourselves BUT we can help. We can do a little part ... canvas/cloth bags are a great alternative ... I now have lots. Different sizes, styles, etc ... depending on my needs! I really like them and although they take a little more effort on my part --- I have to remember to bring them (which if you know me, this is a tough task) but it is so worth the effort.

I recently had an idea that our local co-op should ask for every member to make or purchase a bag or two and donated them to the co-op for people who forget to bring them. Maybe even with a deposit, like the glass milk jugs I use! Do you have any ideas? Lets help keep our Earth healthy and clean!



Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Dancing Baby!

video

Sam has decided that he loves to dance. Here is a little clip! I would have liked to edit it some and DID but was not able to publish it, so here is the unedited version! Oh well, is he not just the cutest thing anyways!

PS Truck Hero

My son thinks that the "PS Truck" (UPS truck to all of us) is the most wonderful person in the world. Despite the fact that I actually ordered the contents of the box and PAID for them, the "PS Truck" gets hailed with all the glory of delivering the package!

I ordered my little guys some new sippy cups Thermos Foogo's, these are stainless steel and BPA free plastic. They are also insulated to keep things cold for up to six hours. Yesterday they arrived and Rick could not stop raving about how wonderful the "PS Truck was to bring me new sippy cups." I tried to explain that mommy had ordered them but the answer was always the same "the PS Truck brought them to me."

Oh well, why argue!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Circus Smirkus

Yesterday we took the children to see Circus Smirkus. This has become a tradition for us. Circus Smirkus is filled with high energy, funny, talented and amazing people. We always enjoy it so much. Here are some highlights from this years performance!



I think the most amazing thing about Circus Smirkus is that these are all teenagers, coming together for the summer. In a short time they put together this spectacular show and then travel around doing many performances in a few weeks. These guys and gals are a dedicated group with tremendous results. Here is a news report telling more about them, if you are interested!



For more information and to see more spectacular footage from years past visit their website at www.circussmirkus.org. And no they are not paying me to advertise ... I just think they are amazing. I also love watching the faces of mine and all the children there to see the show!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Ranting About The Dentist


I just need to rant for a moment! Today four of my children had dentist appointments. We always schedule all their cleanings for the same day ... saves on trips to the dentists office. For many years we traveled over an hour to a pediatric dentist. I have no complaints about this dentist office ... at the time I can remember thinking it was crazy that I traveled over an hour to have the kids teeth cleaned. But the office was designed for children with lots of toys and a big crocodile with teeth on the wall that was whimsical and fun. The Hygienist would go over everything with you and your child at each visit (I can remember thinking, you know I do remember from six months ago) but anyways it was nice for the kids and they always enjoyed going!

Somewhere along the way I decided that it would be better to go to the dentist who had an office in our town. So I did all the paperwork and switch. The first time we went in was fine ... much quicker than the pediatric dentist ... no toys to pry away and no chit chat -- a cleaning and a brief visit from the dentist and we were done. I thought this was okay, easier than the hour drive, one way to the other place ...

Then today we went ... my four oldest children all had cleanings scheduled ... I went in with the first one because I wanted to chat with the Hygienist and make sure all was well. I was just so disappointed ... his cleaning lasted less than 15 minutes and she said he was done, he could pick a prize. I asked "Isn't the dentist going to look at his teeth?" She said "Oh no, there is no dentist on duty today, anyways his teeth look fine."

Okay so here is my question ... Who goes to the dentist and never sees the dentist? I can not wait to see what is billed to my insurance company, a regular "dentist" visit with NO dentist? Is this typical. I have never in my life known of a Hygienist who makes calls on someones teeth ... at the other place we went they were always adamant that the dentist had to tell us about the teeth! The Hygienist always provided great tips for brushing and such BUT never just said "hey they look good to me." I could have stayed home and had my thirteen year old do this type of cleaning.


Have you ever heard of such a thing?

Monday, August 11, 2008

Check This Out ...


Wendy over at Notes From the Sleep Deprived has given me this award! Wendy also has a Brilliante Weblog, I enjoy reading ... go check it out!

What makes this award even more special is that I do not even know Wendy ... thank you so much!

There are so many wonderful blogs out there and the rules for this award says that I have to award it to seven other bloggers ... well this is the deal ... I only really regularly read a few blogs and I do think they are wonderful BUT I have recently awarded them something. So as I think this blog award rage is great, I think is really hard because I do not want to make more work for others!

Also, I am swamped with packing,organizing and getting ready for our Big Move that I just do not have time for blogging, but was feeling really guilty for not thanking Wendy!

PLEASE, go look at my list of links I like, I really enjoy these blogs, then look at their list of blogs and go visit them, that is how I have found lots of wonderful places! I know that there are hundreds, maybe millions of wonderful blogs out there ... I see them all the time, go forth and happy reading!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Freecycle








In anticipation of our big move we have been downsizing. In the past year we sold are three story house, moved to a smaller duplex which turned out to be a big horror story (that is another post), did a quick move putting all our stuff into storage and staying with family and then finally settling into this cute little apartment that we have now! Our current apartment is probably one third the size of our house was so we still have some stuff in storage.

I have to say that we have really enjoyed having less stuff here and decided that as it has been almost a year since we have seen or used the stuff in storage that we could probably get rid of most of it!

Has anyone ever cleaned out a storage unit ... lots of junk! Then add the help of five children and oh my what a pain! This has been an on going process for a couple months. YUCK! YUCK! YUCK!

We have been lugging everything out and setting up a storage sale, people come, rustle through and we sell a little and then we haul it back ... then I discovered FREECYCLE! Here is how it works ... you post an offer and then you get lots of people who want it and are willing to come get it. I participate in Freecycle in our county but from what I can tell they are all over (just do a search in Yahoo Groups). This has been a lot of fun. Even things that I thought would never go is being picked up and people are happy! I have been having so much fun, my husband is concerned that he may come home and I will have given everything away!!!!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Our Big Move ... Knoxville, TN here we come!


A few weeks ago I had posted that Dan's job had been transfered and we would be moving to Knoxville, Tennessee ...

Then the post disappeared ...

Well, because I removed it, NOT because we are not moving but because Dan got a call from the 'big wigs' at work and said, "could you ask your wife to remove the post on her blog until the sale is final"

WOOPS!! I guess my excitement had gotten the best of me!

So, now the news is official, you can find it all over the web ... at the GMCR Web Site, Yahoo Finance and I am sure other places that I have not even heard of so I am thinking it is okay for little ole me to talk about it here! Actually, I know nothing about the new facility or coffee roasting, all I know is that my family is making the biggest move ever and we are excited!

I am a true believer that things happen for a reason ... I have been known to give advice like: "what is meant to happen, will happen", "just give it time" and things like that. When life turns upside down and it looks like doom and gloom, it can be difficult to keep this attitude but I try!

For the past year our life has been on a roller coaster, but as a result of all the seemingly negative things that have happened there has been many,many positive things that have come into our lives (this is another post,for another day) and now we are feeling like things have taken a turn for the best!

We have been talking for years about moving ... but where? We have explored many places and always came up with the same result ... leaving our source of income and paying to actually move was just too much of a risk and even though we really wanted to explore something new, we just could not risk so much with our family!

Many months ago I started corresponding with a very kind lady who I met on a yahoo group. I have never been one to 'chat' or 'IM' and that jazz but she was very kind and seemed to share many of the same values and goals as I have. She was in Tennessee and I in Vermont so really our chats were just a lot of hypothetical chit chat! Then my husbands company announced that they were looking at expanding to the southeast, Knoxville, Tennessee, non the less!

Coincidence after coincidence and here we are making a move that we feel really good about. My family who is all here in Vermont is not very thrilled but we really feel like this is an adventure that we have to take and hope for the best!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Me! Me!

Another 'tag blog'! I am really not sure if this is good or not, as I only read a few blogs I seem to be tagging the same group of people, sorry ... it would be one thing if I had lots viewers and therefore boost your viewers BUT honestly I think I have two loyal readers (and only because they are my dear friends and family). Oh well ... so here goes.

Jen, over at The Story of Us tagged me.

So here’s how the Me! Me! blog tag works:

First, share 7 facts about yourself. Next, tag 7 people at the end of your blog by leaving their name and a link to their blog. Last, let them know they’re tagged by leaving a link in their blog.

My 7 things:

1. I sometimes get up in the middle of the night to read blogs!

2. I love chocolate!

3. I really want my children to wear life jackets on the Ferry Boat!

4. My children are just an excuse to why I love to make mud pies and play with ooblick!

5. Sand gives me cold chills ... the beach is scary!

6. I have drained macaroni onto the floor (holding pan and strainer in my hand, not over sink) more than once!

7. I really do like getting comments on my blog, even though I will claim that I don't, it is fun to see who is reading!

Now for my tags! Well after much thought I would like to pass on this part. I would love for others to participate, so feel free to grab it up and share but I also do not want to make others feel like they have to, that can be so intimidating! Please check out the great blogs I have listed in my side bar ... I really enjoy reading them all! So by reading this consider yourself "tagged", go forth and do as you may!

Have a wonderful weekend!