Weekend Wind Tunnel.

17 Feb

February is crazy around my house. We have two birthdays and an anniversary that happen in the ol’ month of love. Our second daughter Caitlyn turned sixteen. And yes, that drivers’ license is a coming! I have a formula for birthday parties that I instituted in my household many years ago. When our third child was born I quickly realized that going all out for each kid’s birthday every year was going to put me in an early grave. But not without an extended stay at the poor house first.

Here’s my formula;

Big what-ever-you-want-within-reason-of-course birthday party at ages 6, 8, 10, 13 (the beginning of the teen years!), 16 and of course, 18. The other years we have a lovely family gathering with grandparents and special family friends.

So Missy Caitlyn had her pick, this being a “big” year. Six of her girlfriends over for a sleepover. First would be board games, then pizza, then off to the bowling alley at around 9pm, with bowling till midnight. For closing ceremonies, watching the movie Pitch Perfect for the umpteenth time (it’s actually a very entertaining movie).

Driving in a Chevy Suburban with seven hormone enraged teenage girls is always an adventure. With eyes like eagles, they can spot a car load of young males from incredible distances. Word of advice to the uninitiated; don’t even try to make out what your vehicle’s inhabitants are saying. Just listen for the same level of DEFCON 5 as when they were toddlers, because “OH MY GOD!!!!!” could mean any number of things.

Was this traumatizing to me, as when it was to my husband when he drove our oldest daughter and her friends home from a high school dance at a similar age (I think it was the only time I saw my husband want to truly cry)? No. Looking back at what I was doing at 16, this carful of girls was music to my sullied ears.

The bowling alley was packed and the waiting list was ridiculously long. And anyhow, that truck load of cute guys were just going to the ATM next door. A quick change of plans had us detour to the movie theater for the late showing of the movie Warm Bodies. If my husband ever wises up and gets rid of me, I’m totally going after Rob Corddry. I love a man who can make me laugh.

All kidding aside, Richard and I were very impressed with the group of young ladies our baby girl calls her friends. Intelligent, loving, accepting and low-drama. I feel blessed to know that these lovely beauties (inside and out) are going to be part of the “rein reassignment” of my future.

My husband and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary this year. We’ve decided to give another twenty a try!

Then comes our greatest Valentine’s Day gift ever. The birth of our third child and oldest son, Neil. 12 years old, the last of the kid years. Sniff.

Whether its a big year or not, every kid gets to pick the menu for their actual birthday’s dinner.

Caitlyn- Costco’s rotisserie chicken, gluten-free macaroni and cheese (I use Trader Joes) and Portuguese Peas (future recipe post!).

Neil- Gluten-free pizza and mac n cheese (lather, rinse, repeat).

Oh, and also ice cream. Always with the ice cream.

So between birthdays and everyday life, I gleaned info. From the net, the radio, from wherever I can. Here are just a few things that peaked my interest. I was going to add a rant about the Sports Illustrated 2013 Swimsuit Edition, but an individual post might be in order for that one.

Food and Nutrition/Health and Wellness;

If you adore something, then you should shamelessly stalk it! Mark Sisson took some of the fun out of the chase by posting 5 Things People Assume About Me That Are Wrong. As usual, his posts are filled with info, tips and wisdom.

Mark also posted on Mark’s daily Apple, Is It Primal?- Popcorn, Corn Tortillas, Rye, and Other Foods Scrutinized. I love it when he does these posts, where he covers a bunch of foods that many people have questions about. While I would not describe myself as strict paleo or primal, I do try to use fundamentals from the as such uncovered scientific research surrounding ancestral health. Even when I seriously “misbehave in the cave”, the fundamentals help to remind me that there is a way back to healthier, more clean eating.

Heckno Techno;

I’m usually in and out of my car during financial guru Clark Howard’s daily radio show. If it involves $$, then it’s something he will cover on his show at some point.

I’m by no means techno savvy. But I do know a bit about apps, as does any parent who has both a smart phone and a child(ren). Half the crap concerning game apps that my 8 year old asks me about… Well,  I have no idea what he’s talking about.

One of the days this last week Clark mentioned that Verizon, on their site, had a naughty and nice list of phone apps. What gets you landed on a naughty list if you’re a phone app? You’re a data and battery drainer, that’s how. Which helps to explain why my phone, out of the four cell phones on our family plan, runs up the most data, apparently.

The nice list is comprised of apps graded on 3 criteria; security, battery consumption and data.

Verizon Names Data Plan and Battery Killing Apps.

Top 25 free and top 25 paid apps (nice)

Verizon’s Naughty List!

A mom just can’t be too techno smart these days!

 

Misc.;

I don’t know what the hell I was doing in high school, but I sure wasn’t paying attention to lessons on grammar and punctuation. So I am frequently popping onto the net to get clarity on the proper usage of various things pertaining to the English language. I came across this site – The Oatmeal, while reviewing the use of the dreaded semicolon. I shall visit often, if only for the laughs.

Hope you found some useful info! Thanks for hanging out and reading.

~Erin.

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