Friday, October 31, 2008


As a military family, I have to whole-heartedly support this video.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Cleveland airshow

So in addition to everything else, we also took the kids to the Cleveland Air Show this summer! It was an easy drive up there, drove right to the Burke airport, but it took us almost as long to find parking as it did to get there! It was worth it, though, and the kids (and Jamie) had a great time! The Blue Angels were scheduled to fly at 4:30 the day we were there, but it was incredibly hot and unbelievably crowded so we left about 3:30. I have no idea exactly which planes these pictures are of, but the boys loved them and Andy is the one that took most of them!

They had a neat thing- a Shockwave Jet Truck- it's a jet engine on a semi, goes something like 300+ MPH in around 6 seconds! With everything else that was there, I really think the boys liked this the best!

They also had the Army's Golden Knights Paratroopers! The last time I saw them was at an airshow in Charleston WV when Andy was a month old, it was very neat to see them again!

Soccer season...

So Alec is playing soccer this fall and Andy is playing football. We've done soccer in our family, Alec played last spring and Andy played several years in SC, but football is new...
Anyway, his first game was a couple of weekends ago and they won 6-2! He played goalie the first half, not my favorite position for my kids at all, and moved to forward the second half. He did great, got a couple of saves in goalie and a couple of great assists!

Take me out to the ballgame........

So for Andy's 11th birthday, we got him tickets to the Cincinatti Reds and Chicago Cubs game. Since he was a tiny boy, he's been a HUGE Cubs fan- we used to have to call Chicago "ORD" (their airport code, J worked for an airline back then) because if Andy heard the word Chicago he'd go NUTS!

Needless to say he was THRILLED! So last Sunday he and Jamie drove to Cincinnati and Andy got to see his beloved Cubbies in person! They lost 4-3, but he loved it anyway!
The next weekend we had his "friends" party- all he wanted to do was play football in the yard!

They all had a great time, even though Andy threw his only football onto the roof and it got stuck and they ended up having to play kickball!

Bad words- Spongebob style!

So Kate is selling candy bars for her school (any buyers? they're only $1!!!) and this morning she notices the box and asks for one. I told her no, that it's too early and she just had breakfast. Her response, "Oh man, barnacles!"

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

How you can tell we're a military family...

So Kate and I are shopping at the local WalMart yesterday, wandering aisle-to-aisle picking up the few things that were on our list and the many things that weren't. We're going through the dairy aisle and K asked for cheese sticks. I'm all for them eating healthily, but come on- why pay a fortune for pre-sliced cheese sticks when you can buy a block and cut it yourself!? (insert required "cut-the-cheese" boy-joke here) So I'm looking through the section of block cheeses and K is fussing, she wants the "camouflage" cheese. I look and look, then realize she's asking for a block of marbled colby-jack. All the moms around us just laughed....

Friday, September 5, 2008

School IN!!!

So this is the kids' first week of school, and boy have I enjoyed the quiet! Well, at least the quiet mornings...

Andy is now in 5th grade. So far he hasn't said much about it, he has a couple of buddies in his class, lots of "nerds" (according to him). He's also playing football this fall, TACKLE football- and let me tell you, it'll be all I can do not to run on the field and beat the poor kid that knocks my baby down! No, I'm not really going to be that bad, but I'm not making any promises yet!

Alec is now in 3rd grade. So far he's told me all about the girls in his class and not much else! Yes, my boy is a total ladies-man! He seems to really like school so far, he's not crazy about math, but he loves reading (yep, he's my boy!). He's playing soccer this fall and has his first game tomorrow!

Kate is in 4K 5 mornings a week at the school at our church. She likes it, but would like it better if I'd stay with her! She doesn't cry in the mornings, which I'm VERY glad about, but she doesn't want me to leave. Her teachers are great, though, they're always quick to get her involved with something so that I can sneak out. She comes home full of crazy stories (this week she's been acting like a pirate, complete with plastic eye patch and a hearty, "AARRGHHH, ladies" (instead of MATEYS) and is quick to tell me which of her friends has a "boyfriend". Not sure what that means to a 4-year-old, but it's funny to hear her to talk about!

School for me starts on 9/22 and I'm SO excited! It almost seems crazy that I'm finally starting clinicals, I've been waiting forever! My schedule for the first quarter is pretty easy, luckily I'm only taking one class- Mondays 8-8:50, Tuesdays 9-9:50, Wednesdays 10-10:50 and 1-2:50, off on Thursdays and Fridays 7-1:50.

This weekend is Andy's birthday party- a house full of boys playing football, should be fun! I'll post pictures in a couple of days...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

FINALLY! (aka It's About Time OR The End Is In Sight!!!)

So I'm FINALLY starting the last phase of nursing school- clinicals!!! The wait list at every college I've heard of is extremely long, so I've been on a waiting list this whole time. I was #96 on the list for ADN clinicals and rumor has it they take 100 students every fall, so presumably I was in, right? Nope.

At the end of the spring semester I went ahead and put myself on the LPN waiting list as well, so that hopefully I'd be starting one of the two programs this fall. I got accepted to start the LPN program about a week after I added myself, so I knew I'd be starting at least that, but I really wanted to start the ADN program so that I'd be that much closer to being done.

They sent out acceptance letters in rounds, and I knew I was getting close but wasn't getting in. I made arrangements for Kate and registered for LPN classes and had pretty much give up on getting into ADN clinicals this fall, then TA DA!! I got in!!!

So now I'm taking classes Mondays and Tuesdays, a lab on Wednesdays, off on Thursdays, and working in a nursing home one city up on Fridays! I have a good friend in at least one of the classes with me, so that'll be even better!

So stay healthy, everyone, I'm almost ready to be your nurse!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

I'll remind him of this conversation in a few years

Alec: Mom, do you know what a French Kiss is?
Me: Um, I think so, do you?
Alec: Yeah, it's where you put your tongue in the other person's mouth (said with a look of total disgust), why would you do that??
Me: Um......

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Long time no post...

Ok, so it's been a little busy around here this summer! How about an update on each of us:

Jamie's big news is that he's been accepted to the Senior NCO academy! There are only 150 seats available to the whole Air Force, so it's a really big deal that he got accepted. We've heard that it's not unusual to apply more than once, and he got in on his first try, so that's even better! He leaves in March for 7 weeks, I'm not looking forward to that part, but it'll be great for his career! His other big news is that he's finished associates degree#3! He now holds a Bachelors Degree in Business Management/Human Resources Management and Associate Degrees in Aviation Operations, Aviation Management and the newest-Information Systems Technology . He's also been playing softball for our church's team- they suck pretty bad, but he's had fun and made some friends.

Andy spent a week of his summer vacation at Camp Graham in Western Ohio! He had a blast and they did the most fun things! He went canoeing down the Little Miami River, searched for fossils in a creek, played Capture the Flag, swam, learned archery- all the typical camp things! He's already looking forward to next year. It was really hard to leave him- I knew he'd be fine, but it was the first time ever I didn't know what he was doing and who he was with- very hard for a momma! Midget-league football should be starting soon, so he's excited about that, and he'll be starting 5th grade in September.

Alec spent his summer home with me, he's not old enough to go to Camp Graham till next year. He had fun with the Library's summer reading program and has been working on perfecting his artwork! He started soccer last week and is having a lot of fun with that. He'll be in 3rd grade this year.

Kate is her usual wild-child self! She's been pestering her brothers, kissing up to her daddy and has been attached to my side all summer! We haven't done much away from home this year, most of our summer has been spent outside in the yard. She's had a blast catching lightning bugs and roly polys, there are a whole lot of bugs she's afraid of! She's finally sleeping in her OWN ROOM!!!! Well, unless it's storming, then all bets are off! She starts preschool 5 mornings a week this fall- same room where she has Sunday School, but I know she'll throw a fit every morning, I'm NOT looking forward to that!

I haven't done much this summer, other than keep the kids from killing each other! I took a required STNA class (State Trained Nurse Aid) for 2 weeks and a 2-night CPR class, both in preparation for starting nursing clinicals this fall. It's been an expensive summer for us because of my school- the STNA class was $550, the state boards are $100, the CPR class was $50, my school uniform is $200+, I know it'll be worth it in the end, but it's been crazy what all we've had to pay for. There's still a chance I'll make it into RN clinicals, they have about 8 seats open still and I'm about 5th on the list, so I'm crossing my fingers for that. If I don't make RN, I'm scheduled to start LPN clinicals, so it wont be too big of a deal, I'd really like to get it over with now, though.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Maybe next time I'll just get it at Kroger!

So I've been nursing a batch of sourdough starter for 2 weeks, finally drug out the bread machine and attempted my first loaf! Got all the ingredients added, started the machine, everything looks great! Then when it was done, it beeped like it's supposed to, I peep inside the little window and it's completely sunken in! I thought maybe it needed baked a little longer than I'd set the machine for, so I left it in for a few more minutes. After 15 minutes of beeping, I gave up and tried pushing the button marked "Start/Stop" to turn the whole oven off. Apparently the button doesn't turn it off, but if you hold it down like I did, it'll start mixing again! So I mixed the middle of the bread completely out, hollowed the whole loaf out! It smelled great and tasted ok, a little bland... I'll try again, I worked too hard on the starter to give up!


So Kate's hernia surgery is over! It went really well, she was fussing the next morning because we wouldn't let her rider her new bike, I'm taking that as a sign that she's healing nicely!

Lets see... We got to the hospital at 11am and got her changed into a HUGE gown, HUGE pants and HUGE socks- just because she's 4 doesn't mean she's as big as most 4-year-olds! Then we were off to play in the waiting room.

The first nurse comes to get us to do vitals. Kate decides right off that she's not having it. First up was her weight- no deal. She throws a screaming fit, wraps her arms and legs around J's body and won't let go! The ended up weighing both of them, then I took her and they weighed J by himself. She's a whopping 29lbs! Then off to an exam room to get her blood pressure (went slightly better, she's used to playing with my BP cuff) and her pulse. I think she thought they were going to kill her at this point, she absolutely screamed nonstop the whole time! I even put the meter on my own finger to show her it wouldn't hurt and she didn't care. We ended up holding her down- J had her arms, I had one leg and the nurse had the other- they put a teensy bandaid-type meter on her tiny toe and put the big sock back on- she actually kicked the nurse a few times!

So after that fiesta, we went back to the waiting room where there was a standard black Poodle surrounded by 100 little kids in ginormous gowns! Kate liked looking at it, but she wasn't willing to actually touch it! Then a lady from Family Services came out with a big box of stuff to show Kate: surgical masks, the masks K'd wear to get the anesthetic, stuff like that. She let K try on the masks and put them on us, then she took her down the hallway to get hats for us. They were watching to see how she'd do without us and letting her get used to the attire the surgeon and staff would be wearing in the OR. This has got to be the best idea, she was absolutely fine after this!

After another short wait we met with an anesthesiologist, answered the same questions as the 1st nurse, K picked out her "flavor" (raspberry), then we waited/played again.

Finally we went back to meet with the surgeon and the main anesthesiologist. Another round of the same questions (no, she's still not allergic to anything but Augmentin, no new loose teeth since they asked 5 minutes ago...) and the surgeon asked her to lay down so he could mark her hernias. She hopped up on the table, we showed him the hernias and when he went to mark them she freaked out and jumped about 50 feet! We had to reassure her he was only holding a pen, she though for sure he was going to "shot" her!

When he left his nurse came in to take K. I thought for sure she'd freak out again, or at least cry, but no- she took the nurse's hand and before they turned the corner K was laughing about something!

We were in the waiting room long enough for me to read 2 magazines when Dr Pittinger came in. Her surgery took half an hour (he'd originally said it could take up to an hour and a half) and she was already in recovery! Everything went very well, they fixed the hernias, bandaged her up and she was being woken up. After a few minutes we got to go back and see her! She was laying on her side facing away from us and the nurse with her said she'd already been talking about having a birthday that weekend and telling her about her party at Chuck E Cheese! Of course the second she heard our voices she started crying, but the nurse said that that's normal. She wanted to be held, so J got her and rocked her to sleep. We moved to the 2nd recovery room shortly after this and J and I watched Spongebob while she slept. She woke and asked to lay in the bed, and when we moved her she said she was sick. I got an emesis basin under her chin just in time for her to burp loud enough to shake the walls, then she was fine! She slept for about half an hour more, then we got her discharge info, they took out her IV and we got her dressed. She was very excited to ride in a wagon from the recovery room to the car!

She slept most of the way home, and dozed on and off the rest of the evening. She had Motrin for pain, didn't seem to be in enough to get her prescription filled, which was great! The next morning is when she cried because we wouldn't let her ride her bike!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Happy Birthday, Kate!

So somehow the years have flown by and my baby girl is now a grown-up 4 year old! I don't know how I didn't realize it was going by so fast!
We had her birthday party at Chuck E Cheese (chaotic, but at least the massive mess wasn't at MY house!) and they all had lots of fun! There were 13 kids in all, plus moms and a few dads. We had a blast! Kate even let us get her next to Chuck E! She's been terrified of him for years, but when she saw her girlfriends hugging him, she had to do it, too!

Jamie and I got her a big-girl bike! She got it first thing this morning, it was a little too big to wrap and take to the party! She was SO excited, she hurried and got dressed and started asking to go on a bike ride. She rode circles through the house- den, kitchen, hallway, dining room- and really got the hang of it pretty quickly!

I'm going to go play with the kids now, turns out they grow up fast whether you pay attention or not, and I don't want to miss any of it!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

So I found out what to expect next!

So this was drill weekend, and we always have J's troops over for dinner and whatever. Kate has totally fallen head-over-heels in love with 2 of the guys, Brandon and Chris. Last night, everyone was starting to leave and before too long it was Brandon, Chris and Jemen (another of J's troops, who Kate had been playing tea party with all evening). When they were the only ones left, Kate turns to Jemen and says, "You can go now, I want to spend time with my boys." What on earth will she be doing/saying when she's 16??

The weather has been much better (until this weekend, but that's another post...) and Kate and I have enjoyed watching the kids play on the school playground. I hear she and Alec yelling across the backyard every day, and sometimes I sneak and take pictures! Can you see him?

And finally, my sweet, beautiful daughter has apparently inherited her mother's penchant for body art! Luckily (HOPEFULLY!) these are washable markers!

Latest funny Kate story!

What in the world am I going to do with this child??

So Jamie was home alone with Kate and all of a sudden he hears her in the kitchen laughing hysterically. Sometimes that's a beautiful sound, nothing warms the heart like a child's laughter, right? Well, we've learned the hard way that it usually means she's up to something.

Molly, our 6-month-old English Springer Spaniel was in the kitchen eating and Kate had gone in with her. There stands Kate, PANTS DOWN, and there's Molly behind her, licking her fanny!

Seriously, what will she do next??? I'm almost afraid to ask!

Friday, April 11, 2008

We're off to see the wizard

So tonight starts the LONG tornado scare-season! I'm not sure when the actual season is, but so far tonight we've been to the basement twice!

Introducing the latest Stover blog feature- The Tornado Count! Might be fun to keep track of our basement trips! Count along with us, the counter is over on the right.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Just what I needed- another way to waste time on the computer!

Ok, so my cousin and BFF Kathy (hey Kathy!!) sent me a link to a program (service?) I saw several months ago and forgot about- Oh my gosh, I was up till 1am last night playing with it! Here's what you do- download their program (service?), register, click things you're interested on a list, then when you're all set up, you just click a little button at the top of your screen that says "Stumble". How cool- it gives you a different website every time and all related to whatever you said you're interested in! I clicked things like K-12 education, optical illusions (the boys love those), cooking, art, and it has given me some really cool sites! Here are some of the ones I've liked the most: this one teaches you all about how to make those really intricate Chinese knots, you never know when you'll use that kind of info! I love these kinds of things, they're so cute and can't be that hard to make, right?? The boys loved this one, they were amazed! Hello- easy kid-made Mother's Day presents! VERY funny, Kate and I had fun laughing at some of these! because everyone that knows me knows I LOVE catalogs! Because, seriously?

So try it for yourself, see what kind of neat/odd/funny/gross/stupid things you can find!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Yet another Katie-created mess!

So she had a great time cracking the Easter eggs and "smooshing" them with a fork to help Mama make egg salad. So great, that this morning she cracked a raw egg on the kitchen table! She wants "mumbled" eggs for breakfast, guess I'd better get some boiled and ready to go!

Easter, Stover-style!

So coloring the eggs went well! I always worry when we mix dye and Stovers, but there were minimal messes and everything Cloroxed nicely! Jamie found a neat thing- it's like a top, but you put in a boiled egg, a few drops of the color that came with it, close the lid and pump the top. The egg gets bumped around and the color ends up looking marbled- very pretty!
The kids were very excited Easter morning! The EB left them lots of candy, plus movies for all 3, Webkinz for the boys and a Wonder Pets boat for Kate.
Church was great, we had a very nice sermon that made me cry! The boys stayed with us instead of going to children's church, so hopefully they got a lot out of it, too. It was hard picking clothes for K and I, I was dying to wear something spring-y, but it was in the 20s outside! Didn't manage to get any good pix, either- she was NOT cooperating! Same as usual, I guess!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

And she'll wear rings on her fingers and bells on her toes

So we actually hired a babysitter! We've been invited to join a supper club with a handful of couples from church and our first dinner is next Thursday. A few weeks ago we "bought" a teenage girl at a church auction, and I've told the kids her name and a few things about her. When I told them she would be coming next week, K was trying to figure out which girl she is. She asked, "Is she the girl with the necklace on her teeth?" I'd LOVE to know where she comes up with this stuff!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like........

SNOW! LOTS AND LOTS OF SNOW! Seriously, someone turn it off! We got hit with an almost-blizzard this past weekend and WOW! The kids had school on Friday but came home a couple of hours early, and Jamie's drill weekend was cancelled! I honestly think this is the first time EVER I've seen a drill cancelled! So it starts snowing Friday afternoon, and oh, look how pretty! A few hours into it I was ready for it to be over and by the next night I was READY for it to be over! Jamie took the kids out the entire day Sunday, they shoveled the driveway (which took 4 hours!! Next year we're investing in a snowblower!) and then they sledded in the backyard and built a snowman! And then Monday, thank God, we were back to school and work and normal! Well, normal for us, anyway! I have more SNOW pictures on our website-