"Boys are found everywhere—on top of, underneath, inside of, climbing on, swinging from, running around or jumping to. Mothers love them, little girls hate them, older sisters and brothers tolerate them, adults ignore them and Heaven protects them. A boy is Truth with dirt on its face, Beauty with a cut on its finger, Wisdom with bubble gum in its hair
and the Hope of the future with a frog in its pocket."
Author: Alan Beck

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Happy 40th!

40 years ago today, the most amazing man in the world was born.
The only man I know who can still smile when one of our children screams inside a public establishment.
A man who spends every second he can with his boys.
A man who laughs more than anyone I know.
(Excuse my expression...I just saw someone pee on a public sidewalk.  I'm a country girl.  This confirmed my belief that public transit (and it's surroundings) is dirty and scary)

My husband.

My rock.

My best friend.

To the man who is not only a wonderful husband, but an unbelievable father, to the man who has the best smile, to the man who brings me coffee every morning, to the man who shares my dreams, to the man who buys me flowers for no reason (but hasn't done so in a long time...yes, I'm waiting), to the man who volunteers at our boys' school whenever he can, to the man who helps with the dishes and laundry on a daily basis, to the man who will never wear skinny jeans like my brother, to the man who drives me to local farms to buy chickens, to the man who is passionate about life, to the man who spends his free time running, chasing, wrestling, throwing, laughing and exploring, and to the man who protects, loves and cares -


I love you for so many reasons.


Saturday, April 16, 2011

My Perfect Saturday

I normally don't blog on the weekends, but I can't help but scream with excitement when I think about where I get to go today.

As soon as the hubby gets back from his morning run (I'm pacing at the front window watching for him), I'm going here-

The Elizabeth Country Corner to pick up my last two baby chicks.  It's not so much the chicks that excite me, but driving away from suburbia, and entering a land, that to me, is magical.  Leaving streets named Broadway, and trading them for roads named County Rd. 86, refreshes my soul. 

There aren't too many people who understand my burning desire to to make a break for the country.  I think of looking out my kitchen window and being able to see the snow-topped points of Pikes Peak.  I envision a barn, a front porch, a long driveway, trees with tire swings, and 5 boys - who each day discover something they didn't notice the day before. 

Almost every morning, I check the real estate ads to see which houses are up for grabs in my dream land.  Here's what I found this morning.

I imagine driving up this long driveway to our home.  I imagine loud boys and farm animals alike.  I imagine lots of exploring, learning, and wondering.

I imagine our home with Christmas lights.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Farming in the Suburbs.

Despite the fact that we live in smack dab in the middle of Highlands Ranch (a place that was once a real working ranch, but now takes the shape of a large city with a Walgreen's on every corner) I am bound and determined to live my farm dream to the fullest....until we can afford to break out of here.

Farm life or bust.

Have I told you about our chickens?  Last week we received the long-awaited call from the post office that our baby chicks had arrived, and were ready for pick up.  Fast as I could, I raced to retrieve them.  Logan held the 'peeping' box on his lap for the car ride home.  Sadly, only 3 out of 4 made the stressful trip from the hatchery in Texas, to our ranch in the suburbs.  Try as he might, Logan did his best to revive the fluffy (but stiff) chick who lay in the box. 

WARNING-It gets worse....

Over the next three hours, the 3 remaining chicks also died.  Medicine droppers of warm water, heat lamps, electrolytes (think chicky Gatorade), and hand feeding wasn't enough.  We tearfully told them 'goodbye' and added ordering livestock through the USPS to our list of things we shall never do again.

Friday night we did things the old fashioned way and traveled 45 minutes from our home to a real-life farm and feed store in Elizabeth, CO.  The 4 oldest boys each took their time and picked their own day-old chicks straight from the brooder.  We are happy to report that we are now proud owners of 4 little pullets who will one day (roughly 4 months from now) supply us with yummy, organic eggs.
Shifting gears now.....

What is it with the 'stick figure' decals/stickers EVERYONE IN AMERICA is plastering all over their cars?  Am I the only one who thinks they are ridiculous?  Here's what pushed me over the edge - driving behind a woman the other day who had 8 stick figure cats stuck to her back window.  Apparently, she wants the world to know that she's the proud owner of 8 cats.  Are you kidding me?  Why not just print a bumper sticker that reads My house is full of fur and reeks of cat urine!...???

I'll take a chance at making an educated guess and say that 75% of the population could give a rip if your son is a hockey player, your daughter is a ballerina, you are a PTA mom, your husband carries a briefcase, and you own 2 dogs and one turtle.  Your perfect stick figure family portrait is nauseating.

Maybe I'm just jealous that I have yet to find stick figure family stickers that honestly represent my family.  Here's what I would need -

*Two stick figure boys completely tangled by a brotherly brawl.  The big brother is performing his best wrestling move, while the little brother repeatedly whips him with a stuffed bunny.
*One stick figure boy who only wears underwear
*Make that TWO stick figure boys in their undies, hiding under the kitchen table with the chocolate they just stole from the pantry.
*One stick figure boy who is chewing 14 pieces of gum while coloring on my walls (and his face) with a Sharpie.
*One overworked, underpaid & exhausted husband.
*One apron-wearing mom who has 'dream clouds' above her head that hold a farm house, a barn & a picket fence.  She's got a toilet plunger in one hand (she plunges multiple times a day) and a glass of wine in the other....extra emphasis must be placed on the bags under her eyes.
*One parrot
*One fish
*One bearded dragon
*Two dogs who eat their own poo
*Four chickens

There you have it.  My perfect stick figure family.  Now if you'll excuse me, I have a toilet to plunge.

Monday, April 4, 2011

We Survived.

Road Tripping with 5 boys is a lot like childbirth.  You forget how painful it was the last time you did it, and you become dumb (or forgetful) enough to do it again.  The road trip we did over spring break was no short jaunt.  We traveled 2800 miles (round trip) to visit family in not-so-sunny California.

The first day, we drove non-stop to Vegas, where we spent the night at Circus Circus.  Being Vegas virgins, we thought staying at a kid-oriented an establishment with Circus in it's name would be a real treat for the kids. 

This is the part where I give a shout out to family members who knew of our intentions, thought they were a bad idea, and neglected to chime in and warn us.  (To DECLAN and LORIE, we sincerely THANK YOU!)

If you're a fan of cigarette smoke, drunk parents who are more worried about losing the humongous bear they just won at the balloon pop game than they are their own offspring, bathtubs with ring around the tub and bodily hair that DID NOT fall off anyone in your family, police officers detaining people 3 doors down from your room at 8:00 AM, and smells that cannot be identified, THIS IS THE PLACE FOR YOU!

Lesson learned-Not all things with the word 'Circus' in their titles will be fun....or suitable for children.

Our second stop, was Pa John & Annette's house in Clovis, CA and was a much more enjoyable experience.  After a long day of driving, we were happily greeted with a huge meal and warm (and clean!) beds to sleep in.  Our visit was much too short, but was filled with bug-hunting, fish-feeding, karaoke, walks with Pa John, and Annette's famous oatmeal (which I will spend my life trying to perfect).

The rest of our trip was spent in Brentwood, CA with Dec and Lorie, and in San Francisco, CA with Uncle Mark and Auntie Sheiwa.  We visited fabulous places, like the California Academy of Science, several 'factories', including Jelly Belly, Spaghetti & Fortune Cookie, and even went hiking up Mt. Davidson in search of the shimmering rock.

This boy turned 7 during our trip and told us that "Turning 7 in California was the bestest birthday ever!"
Happy birthday to the bestest 7 year old we know!
The rest of our time was filled by loving on the cutest baby in all the land...
From backyard fire pits (complete with marshmallow roasting), to crab dinners, to light saber fights with Darth Maul, let the record show that 2011 holds the record for the BEST spring break adventure our family has even seen.
We're already counting the days until we can do it all again next year!

PS-Let the record also show that Darth Maul wears jeggings.  Only in California.