Saturday, October 25, 2008

I voted. It felt good. Although my vote for president didn't really count... I mean, we all know Texas is a red state and no matter what my affiliation, that fact remains, however, there were other races that I hope to have had an impact on. PLEASE go vote. *start patriotic soundtrack* There is absolutely no excuse not to... and if you choose not to, don't come crying to me when the tax rate goes sky high, the war on terror is all but abandoned, abortion is not only perfectly legal at any stage, but encouraged and taught in public schools and we go to a socialized healthcare system. *steps down from soapbox*

In other news, my Aggies won.... which is a SHOCK, since A&M has been biting the big one as of late and can't seem to do anything right... let's just hope we're not seeing the last win for the season right here, right now.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Things that make me happy :)

My new loveseat...
I cherish my family...

My trunk in the living room... it holds all the beautiful quilts my mom has made us over the years

My new couch...


Homemade banana bread (still warm as I type)...

A sign over my kitchen doorway....

My breakfast room hutch... LOVE this furniture line! Thank you World Market!

My bookshelf in the living room full of family pictures and things I hold dear...

My dining room hutch, again from World Market...

My special reading area in my dining room... so peaceful...

My picture wall.... I am addicted to Hobby Lobby...


My over shadowed mantel and giant clock... I adore this clock!
Alright, that is all... I love peeking into other peoples' houses, so I thought I would give you a peek into mine :) Now, there is hot, fresh banana bread calling my name....

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Stagg Look-alike Meter

MyHeritage: Look-alike Meter - Genealogy research - Free family tree

Stagg Look-alike Meter

MyHeritage: Look-alike Meter - Geneology - Family tree form

Stagg Look-alike Meter

MyHeritage: Look-alike Meter - Ancestors - Geneology

Stagg Look-alike Meter

MyHeritage: Look-alike Meter - Family tree search - Free genealogy

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I really, really, really need some input on a very important decision! My girlfriends and I are taking a trip, but we aren't sure where... our current idea is Nashville. We don't want to go to NYC again (I have been 4 times in the last 4 years) and we don't want to go to Vegas (have been there 3 times, as recently as August) and we can't think of anywhere else to go.... Disney is out (one of my friends is going in March) and DC is out (another one of my friends just went last summer) so we are at a bit of a loss..... I think I am the youngest going (I'm 30) and the oldest as of now is 52. Lots and lots of walking may be difficult for some, so.... keeping all that in mind, any suggestions? I think there are about 6 of us... or at least I hope there will be, once we pick where to go. We are going in June, if that helps! We are in need of choices... I can't BELIEVE that we can't think of anywhere.... also, I should throw this out there... we are budgeting about $1000 per person TOTAL (airfare/hotel/car if needed and spending $$). I would appreciate any and all suggestions! Thanks!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Gone Bananas!

Hi. My name is Charly and I am an ice cream-aholic. It has been 5 days since my last bite.

I have a serious problem. I am addicted to ice cream. Not just any ice cream... Ben & Jerry's Chunky Monkey. I love it like it is one of my children. I get ridiculously excited, knowing it's in my freezer. Sometimes I hear it calling my name...

I think it's safe to say I eat 6 pints of Chunky Monkey a month.

I should mention that I use ice cream like most people use alcohol. When I have a bad day, I don't seek out a goblet, but a small silver spoon from Ikea. I don't head for the wine rack, but the freezer and when I first see my beloved carton, I get tingles up my back. I am beyond trying to hide this awful habit... I will eat it right out of the carton, right in front of my kids and I am not ashamed... and I DON'T SHARE. They know this, they don't even ask anymore. Sometimes, when the day is particularly stressful, I eat my Chunky Monkey with out the TV on. Why, you ask? Well, I don't want to miss it. What is 'it,' you ask? Well, 'it' is the the smooth creamy banana velvet melting on my tongue... 'it' is the chocolate, so pure and cold and hard in contrast... 'it' is the walnuts, crunchy and delicious and when I am lucky enough to get all three parts in one bite, it is better than anything I could ever even dream up.

Did I forget to mention that I eat the entire pint at once?
Did I also forget to mention that one pint is exactly 1160 calories?

Stacey is at the grocery store as I type this. For his own good (and personal safety), I certainly hope he remembers my ice cream.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fall. I think I loved it a little more before I was a 1st grade teacher, because let's face it, teachers beat Fall into the ground, but that aside, I still love it. I love cooking with apples and pumpkins. I love cooking with my crockpot. I love burning cranberry chutney wax tarts with the windows open, a cool breeze blowing through the house while sounds of football can be heard both from the tv and from the kids playing outside. I love carving faces into food objects and trying to explain gourds to my children, when I don't even really understand them myself. I love reaping the benefits of my children going door to door, begging for sweets. I love leaves in colors other than green. I love not having to tend to the yard. I love not sweating all the time.
This weekend my sweet sweet mother in law treated us to a Fall makeover, by getting us a few things for our mantel. I know Stacey is happy, because now that I have Fall decor, I won't be so quick to demand all 1,734 boxes of Christmas decorations come down from the attic on November 15 so I can make the house look like elves threw up all over it.
I jus wish the Aggies could appreciate my love for Fall and realize that they are raining on my parade a little bit.

I KNOW you remember a post a few weeks back about my sweet, precious little Lucas and the bright blue sharpie, right? He drew all over the back of our couch, on the (non reversible) couch cushion and all over all four of the reversible cushions of the love seat. Now, I should say that while our couches were cheap, they were only 3 years old and we were hoping they would last long enough for us to get into another house before having to get new ones.
After much debate (and having to look at army green and blue striped couches), we decided that something needed to be done. On Monday, the whole family piled into the Yukon after I got home from school and went to the Ashley Furniture Showroom. We looked and looked and looked and ended up picking out what my mother would argue, the same couch and love seat we had before. It is true that they look a lot alike, they are NOT the same... there is a lovely cream colored piping on these, the back cushions aren't removable, ... jeez, they aren't even the same shade of green!
Anyway, they are on their way and will be here net week.... bye bye blue striped couch... it will be finding a new home with my mom, who doesn't' care that the back of the couch is striped, since it will be facing the wall, unlike here. The blue striped love seat is going to find a new home in our playroom because we can turn cushions and it goes back to looking like a cheap love seat that has survived a house with 4 children.
Above is a pic of my new, non striped love seat I took with my phone at the Ashley store ;) I will take pics once they are in the house ... yay!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

In the last week, I have been on the teacher end of 16 conferences and on the parent end of 3. I can honestly say that this year has been very calm, as far as parents go... actually, I have never had what some teachers would label as 'bad' parents, but this year I have really, really good parents, always willing to help out in all capacities. I so appreciate parents that take an interest in their child's education. I think kids feel valued when their parent is present in some way :)

As a parent, I apparently have the most loving, attentive, hard working children on earth... I am not sure if the teachers were truly talking about MY children... kind of hard to believe, but that's what they said, so I guess it's either true or my kids are really good at playing the role of 'good kids' at school... I wish they would practice more at home ;)

Seriously though, now that it is my 2nd year teaching the same grade, I feel like I am getting somewhere... last year was my 'getting my feet wet' year and now I am getting the chance to implement everything I learned by trial and error last year... and before you get too worried, my kids from last year survived and are thriving in 2nd grade... didn't mean to make them sound like guinea pigs...

The first week of school I was doing a little crying and a little drinking... or maybe a lot of both. I was ready to quit, but now, I am loving life and my job and my 22 sweet kids. Can someone PLEASE remind me of this about September 5 of next year.... ???

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I made the best thing today and, for the first time in a LONG time, not one of my kids complained they didn't like it!!!! Yay! Ok, I took regular Pilsbury crescent rolls. A can comes with 8, but I cut them so that instead of one big triangle, I have 2 smaller triangles. I grated medium cheddar cheese and, in this case I used turkey lunch meat and cut it into small pieces. I put a pinch of both cheese and turkey , then sealed the dough around it and put them, seam side down on a cookie sheet. They baked at 375 degrees for 8 minutes. The recipe made 16 small pot stickers and each child easily ate 4, with pears and peanut crackers (their combination, not mine!). Yum! (I am calling them pot stickers because I don't know what else to call them and they kind of look like pot stickers... )

For Stacey and me, I made personal chicken pot pies. I put chicken, cooked and cut, into a pot with cream of mushroom soup, onion, carrots, peas, green beans and peppers. I added salt, pepper and garlic salt and boiled for about 10 min. Then I buttered 4 personal bundt pans (that was the only small oven safe dish set I had) and put a Pilsbury crescent over it, brushed it with butter and baked it for 10 min. I also made Campbell's chicken noodle soup to go with it. The first pic is my real meal with pot pies and soup, the second is just a stock photo of pot stickers... forgot to take an actual pic of those :(
It was good!
Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Undisputably, one of the best candid kid pics ever taken, which means I must tell the story of Ryan and Lucas.

Andrew is very 'type a,' and Grace is one step bossier and more outgoing than that....

But Ryan and Lucas are a very different story. When Lu was born, Andrew wanted another girl and since he didn't get his way, he pouted. Grace was too young to care and I think was just happy that her diva status wasn't interfered with. Ryan wanted a little brother... soooooo bad. When he came out, he looked just like Ryan and that was all it took.. Ryan was in love. Ryan was 4 years old when Lu was born. He followed us around the house, was constantly fussing over him, watching him sleep, giving him his blanket, offering to get me diapers.... you get the point. I sometimes found Ryan asleep with a pillow and blanket on the floor next to Lucas's crib. It was precious.

Lucas must remember this, becuase anytime he needs anything (and 2 yr olds have needs... a lot of them) he goes to Ryan. When he gets hurt, he seeks out Ryan to kiss it. When he needs help getting his undies back on, he asks Ryan. I even remember once, when Ryan got a splat on the hand for something and was sent to his room, he called for Lucas to come kiss it. Ryan never leaves Lu out of anything, even offering for Lu to be on his 'team' when the kids play football, baseball or even Clue.

These are the brothers you read about in stories.... I can't wait to see them as adults. I so want to call one of my children, only to have them tell me they will have to call me back because they are on the other line with one of their siblings. I love watching the brotherhood between Lucas and Ryan... it makes me proud as a mother.

Friday, October 3, 2008

The story of Andrew and the teeth...

My son Andrew has the most beautiful teeth I have ever seen. I had braces from 5th to 8th grade and even then, I wondered if a few more years weren't needed. When he originally lost his teeth he was, of course, precious as all 5 yr olds are (You should SEE my little Junie B in my class that just lost her top front... adorable). Then the big ones started to grow in... and by 'big,' I mean humongous, ginormous, he-could-eat-the -ever-livin'-heck out of an apple goofy looking Bugs Bunny teeth! (It is proper to capitalize the names of cartoon characters, true?) Anyway, everyone told me he would grow into them... I was just wondering how big they expected him to get...

Fast forward 3 years and I swear the child has one of the mist beautiful smiles I have every seen. May be it's because he's mine, but daddies, it's time to start locking up your daughters, because he has moves, let me tell you... At recess (yes, Amy, I was inspired by your recess story), his friends play football and the girls play cheerleader. He recently informed us that his roll in all this is that of the cheerleader coach. After my dear husband recovered from choking on his steak he, not so tactfully, informed Andrew that he was NOT going to be assuming that roll any longer and needed to tap into more masculine (meaning less feminine) talents. Being the smart boy that he is, he came the next day to tell us that he was no longer the cheerleader coach, that another boy had taken that job (note to self, find out who this boy is and thank him), and is now a yell leader. Now, since my husband literally bleeds maroon (no, really, I have seen it), how could he argue? He couldn't, which is funny by itself, but the truly classic part came when I asked him why he'd rather be on the sidelines, than the field to which he replied...

"Um, Mom? That's where all the hot chicks are..." making a valid point, as usual!

Just a side note, he is in love with a precious little girl named Sarah and he even named a Webkinz after her... and I kind of told her, which he doesn't know... does that make me a bad mom?

Additional side note, I realize that the television show in the background looks like it might possibly appear to fall into the "adult film" category, but it is really the episode of One Tree Hill where Payton gets shot in the school library by Jimmy, the hefty guy that clearly needed therapy... just wanted to clear that up before folks jumped to wrong conclusions :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

I have a 5 1/2 yr old daughter. Her name is Grace. Her brothers, who were 3 and 1 1/2 when she was born, had a little trouble saying "Gracie", so they called her Gigi. It fits. She is diva-ish. (BTW, I had a professor in college that pronounced 'diva' with the long /i/ sound when reading "Lily and the Purple Plastic Purse" and it drove me NUTS) Anyway, she loves to have toe nails painted, loves make up and still has glitter stuck to her scalp from her dance recital in MAY... which is a good indicator of the quantity she thought necessary to be a ballerina. I love this child because she is quirky... she has a routine at night before she goes to bed: She gives me hug, kiss, kiss, hug. She gives her daddy hug, kiss, hug, kiss. DO NOT EVER try to sneak in an extra hug or kiss or she will fall to pieces adn then give you the look pictured above.... seriously.

Grace started Kindergarten this year. I teach at the best elementary school within 50 miles so naturally, she comes to school with me. Now, my co workers only knew me as mom to my two rough and tumble boys who went to school with me... boys who play soccer, rarely match and never comb their hair. I think people were a little shocked to meet Grace. She is at least a head shorter than 90% of the kindergarten class as a whole, the bottom of her backpack hits her in the back of the knees and it isn't abnormally large, but she has the biggest personality of anyone I know. I often find the women in the office or the kinder aides telling "Grace" stories.... my best friend teaches kinder this year and always has something to tell me.

I am glad I only have one girl, so we can go get mani/pedi's, go to lunch at the tea room (which CLOSED and I am not quite over that yet), and shop!!! (boy, does she love to shop). I think I was made to have just one goofy little girl. Have I mentioned that I predict raising her will be equally, if not more difficult than raising all three of my boys combined? I love Grace!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I wonder what the seeds would look like...

There is a waste water sewage plant on the edge of the Bryan/ College Station city line... Needless to say, when the weather is right, that area (and depending on the wind, others) stink!!!

Well, my kids are curious are EVERYTHING, so once, a while back one of them asked what the smell was. After a rousing roundabout of "you tooted, no you tooted, no it was dad, no, it was Lucas," Stacey finally told them it was a 'poop plant.'

Fast forward a few months (years, whatever) and I overhear a conversation between my sweet Grace and a friend of mine... they were discussing gardening and I hear my lovely fair haired, blue eyes like an angel child (with the mouth that I would liken to a 5 year old sailor) say:

" I really want a garden, but I will never EVER put poop plants in it"

Kids are so literal.... That was funny.