Friday, March 28, 2008

Hmm...I guess I DO have an accent!

Saw this over on my friend Tanya's blog.

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Inland North

You may think you speak "Standard English straight out of the dictionary" but when you step away from the Great Lakes you get asked annoying questions like "Are you from Wisconsin?" or "Are you from Chicago?" Chances are you call carbonated drinks "pop."

The Midland
The Northeast
The South
The West
North Central
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Oh, and yes, I do call those carbonated beverages POP!

Come on! Play with me. What accent do you have?

Monday, March 24, 2008

Tackle It Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

This is my first time participating with Tackle It Tuesday, and I thought it was a good opportunity to get something done last week! My little desk/laptop area was about to drive me crazy with all the crap all over! This is "MY" little corner, my area where I write in my little blog and download my pictures and surf the net and connect with all sort of wonderful people! BUT...I was getting to the point that I didn't even want to sit down over there. Not anymore!

Here are my before pictures:

My Corner #1 - Before

My Corner #2 - Before

If you click on the following picture, you will be able to see notes over in Flickr.

My Corner #3 - Before

And VOILA! It only took me about an hour to go through everything and reorganize!

My Corner #1 - After

My Corner #2 - After

My Corner #3 - After

Can't wait to see what everyone else did!

Six One Way #5

Six One Way #5

Friday, March 21, 2008

Spring is here?

Well, yes, it really is. The robins are here, probably already making their nests and hanging out in our front yard trees. But again, today, we woke up to this:

March 21? Shot out my front window...

and a view of our back yard...

Spring? Shot of the backyard...

You'd think it was the first snow of the season! It's the heavy wet stuff that makes great snow balls and snowmen! Oh will be in the 40's again in a few days and it will all melt!

And you will see in the following pictures how all our snow was about gone yesterday!

The visit with our former neighbors was all I expected it to be! Ang and the kids arrived around 11 a.m. and while the kids were circling, get reacquainted, Ang and I just slid right in to our regular conversations, catching up on things. I was whipping up a batch of Chocolate Chip cookies and then I put some coffee on we proceed to talk for the next SEVEN hours! LOL!

The kids played outside, inside, with games (Hullabaloo, always a fave!), Leapsters, in the bear den (our storage area under the stairs), and just pretty much had a great time. Then Angela took us out for lunch and afterwards, I gave her a little tour of my hometown. Then it was back home by 3 p.m., talked more and finally around 4 p.m. we actually sat down to work on the computer for bit on a spreadsheet, which was one of the main reasons for her coming down!

They were getting ready to leave about 5:50 p.m. and I yelled, "ACK! I have to get the camera and take a couple pictures of the kids before we go!" See, I knew I'd almost forget!

The kids have really grown and you KNOW everyone had a good time when the visitors cried because they didn't want to leave and when the hosts cried because they "missed their friends". "Can't M & G live with us?"

I had to throw in this picture because G just looks so cute with his winking. He was doing this on almost all of the pictures. Same ole G!

Gabe, quit making that goofy face!


Oh, and T, we're getting lots of use out of the Razors and the skateboards! Thanks so much!

After they left, I quickly made the kids a peanut butter sandwich as we had to leave for church. We picked up Grandma Gloria and then Great-Grandma Marcy. We had to be at church early so Grandma and I could have a little choir practice before the service. It was a somber evening and the girls were worn out from playing outside most of the day. Lindsey fell asleep in the pew and I had to carry her out. She kept sleeping and even after we got home, we got her pj bottoms and right into bed she went, never waking up!

Today, the girls and I are hanging out. Dad just left to visit his brothers and friends for the annual Sucker Run, but he'll be back tomorrow. I just need to make my Grape Salad for Easter dinner at Great-Grandma's sometime. Pretty low key. For those interested...

Grape Salad

2 lbs. Green seedless grapes
2 lbs. Red seedless grapes
8 oz. sour cream
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Wash and stem grapes. Set aside.

Mix sour cream, cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until blended. Stir grapes into mixture and pour into large serving bowl.

For topping: combine 1 cup brown sugar and 1 cup crushed pecans

Sprinkle half this mixture into the grape mixture and stir well. Sprinkle remaining brown sugar/pecans over the top of the grapes to cover completely. Chill overnight.

Happy Good Friday!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Not just your ordinary Thursday...

WE are having company! Tee-hee! The thing is, Thursday is usually the day we stay home, hang out in our pajamas for a long time and just kick back. It's a free day with nothing going on. But today, we have some friends coming over...our old neighbors and we are ALL excited!

I really had no attachment to the place we moved from, not to the house, or to the area, but my next door neighbors...well, that was a different story. They were the BEST! I couldn't have asked for better neighbors. A & I became fast friends, always lots to talk about. I think we really balanced each other well with different strengths. Her daughter, M, was exactly a year older than Lindsey & Sydney and her son, G, was six months younger. We did a lot of swapping of kids, helping each other with home projects, borrowing eggs, sugar...stuff like that. It was definitely the ONE thing I was most sad about when we moved.

Now we are about an hour away, not far, but still, not at all like it used to be. Our visits are much more few and far between, you know, because life is still happening, our kids are getting older and more involved, and of course WE are involved with all sorts of things too.

Hopefully, I'll be able to snap a few pics of the kids today, see how much they've grown, that is, if A and I quit yakking for long enough to get the camera out! LOL!

But just for are a few from years past.

Almost exactly three years ago...taken on 3/24/05 with Lindsey, G and Sydney...


and this one was in May of 2005...


and here they are in November of 2005...


Anyhoo, we are looking forward to a great visit!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

You saw my post yesterday. Snow. They closed school, for what reason, I have no idea. The roads were fine. It got up to 40*F and the snow all melted. Now I hear rumblings of some more of the heavy wet stuff on Friday. We'll see.

I'm getting a bit anxious for spring. I love every season here in Minnesota (and yes, that includes winter), but part of that is the anticipation of the next season. The following pics are from last year...but hey, we all need a little Spring pick-me-up, right?

Can't wait for my front yard to look like this!

Trees are blossoming!

Front garden...

It's Spring!

Check for more WW here or here.

Happy Spring...wherever you are!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Yesterday, robins! Today...

One last snowfall...hopefully?

You can always count on one last snowfall in March in Minnesota. Here's hoping this is it and that it doesn't amount to much! Every now and then, you might even get one in April! It's definitely spring though, and it's supposed to be in the 40's again in a few days. The girls and I were watching the robins in our crabapple trees there in the picture yesterday. And we could hear the birds a-singing yesterday evening as well.

What better way to spend a spring day, Palm Sunday, then by coloring a few Easter eggs!

These are funky gloves!

Coloring eggs

Look at this pink one! Concentrating

We had a nice day yesterday. After church, the Sunday school served roll, juice and coffee as a fundraiser for SS. We all signed a board that is going to be used in home that will be built for Habitat for Humanity this summer. It's a great organization that our church and Sunday school supports. The girls played outside most of the day. I had a bad headache and was able to relax for a bit and watch the NASCAR race, and then later, the Easter eggs.

Six One Way #4

Enjoy the day!

Friday, March 14, 2008

The Ultimate Blog Party 2008!

Okay...I'm jumping in. I'm joining. I'm finished with my procrastinating.

I hang out over at 5 Minutes for Mom and there is a whole lot of par-tay-ing going on! I thought, what the heck, may as well join in on the fun.

So, let me introduce myself. My name is Kim and I'm the mom. I'm also a wife, daughter, sister, friend, co-worker, volunteer, Sunday school teacher, and know-it-all (LOL- thought I'd throw that in for DH)! But I mostly identify with mom, because for much of my life I wondered if I'd ever get to call myself that.

A little about myself: I have identical twins who are five. They've been through a lot, being born at 24 weeks and spending 114 days in the NICU, but things have been really good for quite some time. I'm truly grateful. I also have a husband of nearly nine years (together for 14) and an almost 21 year old stepson. I've been through different things in my life: love, loss, divorce, infertility, micropreemies, but I really do cherish every experience. It's made me who I am today and I like me.

I love to read. Always have. I began reading at barely four years old and have never stopped. It just opened a new world for me. I read every chance I got as a child, as soon as I woke up in the morning, on the bus to and from school, until it was time for supper, by the light outside my bedroom window when I was supposed to be sleeping. I remember in 1st grade reading the Encyclopedias when I'd finish my work. I remember in 2nd grade how ecstatic I was when I could check out three library books instead of two! By 2nd grade I was reading at a 7th grade reading level. I read all kinds of genres: mystery, historical fiction, Biblical fiction, non-fiction. I do tend to stay away from most mushy romances these days though (I think I got burnt out on Danielle Steel).

I love to travel and did get the chance in my late twenties to do something I didn't think I'd ever get to do. I had always wanted to be an exchange student when I was in high school. I have always been fascinated by the world and other cultures and I wanted to experience more. Needless to say, I got married to my childhood sweetheart right out of high school. Our marriage did not stand the test of time and after 6.5 years, we divorced. I realized that I was still young and could do anything I wanted to do. So, I enrolled in a Study Abroad program, quit my job of 6.5 years, sold my car, put my stuff in storage and got on a plane for Sevilla, Spain, knowing no one. It was a life changing experience for me. I was 27 years old and I was there for entirely different reasons than the 19, 20, and 21 year old college students. I had two roommates and a wonderful host family. My Spanish mother, Lolita, was only four years older than me. We had some great conversations and I thought it was so special how we could really relate to one another. We were more like friends than mother/daughter. After my program ended, I spent another month traveling Europe with one of my roommates. Oh, the stories to tell...another time, perhaps.

I'm generally quite quiet and reserved until I get to know you, then I talk your ear off. I don't talk much in big groups because I hate trying to butt in when others are talking, thus the reason I prefer smaller groups. That all being said, I'm also quite adventurous, having made several other trips on my own where I know no one. I love making new friends and experiencing new things.

About my blog: Much is about my girls and what's going on with them, but basically, it's pretty much a bunch of random thoughts from yours truly.

So, now you know a bit about me...let me know a little about you! Is anyone reading? Leave a comment and let me know you stopped by! Oh, and come on! Join the Par-Tay! You only have a couple days left!

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Sunny Saturday

Sunny, yes. Warm? No. It's the time for crazy spring weather here in Minnesota. Below zero temps the past few days, which is unusual for March. But then in a blink of an eye, it will be in the 40's! I hear that's the word for later in the weekend.

I'm just sitting here in my comfy chair, fresh coffee, sun beating in my big front window, listening to the sounds of a Saturday morning. The girls are playing downstairs, one in their pajamas, and the other in her dance leotard (which she wears every chance she gets!). I can hear that the TV is on. DH is probably watching ESPN while he's running on the treadmill. There's crap all over the house, toys, dirty clothes that missed the basket, papers and markers strewn over the table, breakfast dishes waiting to be put in the dishwasher...

Ahhh, the normal everyday moments of a family. There were times in my life when I didn't think I'd ever get to experience this. I remember days where it was so very quiet, with just the rustle of a newspaper and DH and I would sit in peace. It was nice at times, but I wouldn't change this normal chaos for anything. It's hard to remember those days of quiet.

Ordinary. I just love it.

Nothing much going on today. I have an appointment to get my nails done! I'm excited. I'm a nailbiter so it will be nice to have beautiful nails again. Well, I didn't used to be a nailbiter. I had actually quit biting my nails for a long time, but then when the girls ended up in the NICU for 114 days, it was quite a nailbiting situation for me, and I reverted. Now it's become a bad habit again. So, I decided to use this gift certificate I won at the salon in town to do this for myself. I'll share some pics later. I should probably take some before pics too. The thing is, I really do have nice natural nails if I could let them grow. Hopefully, this will be what I need!

Last night, I met a girlfriend for dinner and conversation. Boy, do I enjoy talking with her! We have such great talks! She's one of those friends who really enjoys talking about subjects with meat: religion, politics, education choices, parenting, world events...I could go on and on, and while we agree on lots of things, there are also many things we vary on, but we can talk and listen to each other and I think we both learn a lot from each other. Always very insightful! Not to mention, she's a fellow twin mom. Her kids are about seven years older though. We've been friends for a long time and it's one of those friendships where we can go long periods of time without talking and then just pick right up where we left off. And neither of us gets upset because the other hasn't called or emailed. I just love her and I know that we'll be friends for the duration.

Stay warm! Enjoy the spring if it's coming where you live!

BTW, I'm participating with Six One Way over on Flickr. Here are my first two submissions. Have a great day!

Six One Way - #2

Six One Way - #1

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

The 3B's - bath, book, bed!

After bath, reading a book, ready for bed...of course, the best part...with daddy!

The 3B's - bath, book, ready for bed!

Oh, and of course today, I just have to add...I'm sad.

The word out yesterday is that our beloved quarterback is retiring. Yes, we will not be seeing that #4 running out onto the field anymore, laughing, playing jokes, and throwing TD's. What an awesome career! Here's to you, Brett! We love you, we'll miss you, and we hope you enjoy your retirement and the time spent with your family! We'll see you in the Hall of Fame!

We love Brett Favre!

Check out more here or here.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Inspiration, Friendship and Making a Difference

I received a letter last week. Well, I should say that Lindsey and Sydney received a letter. It was from one of their Primary nurses when they were in the NICU. This letter made me cry. I know that it will mean a great deal to Lindsey and Sydney someday.

Our nurse, L, is very special to us; to me. We became close during our time in the NICU. I really can't tell you how much she meant and still means to me and my family. I know she cares for these babies like they are her own, loves them and advocates for them. We were very fortunate with the primaries that we had.

We stay in contact with L and get together, not as often as we like, but that's what happens when everyone has a life! But back to the letter...I emailed L and asked if I could share some of her letter on my blog. She said yes, so that's what I'd like to do. There were many words and phrases that touched me, showed me again what a wonderful and inspiring person she is...and why I'm grateful that she's in our lives.

At the top of her letter, one of my favorite quotes:

"The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched; they must be felt within the heart." ~ Helen Keller
Her letter begins (and remember this is to Lindsey & Sydney):

Some of you I have not been in touch with for years and some maybe yesterday. I am writing this note as I approach my 30th birthday. In almost 30 years, it's amazing all of the people that come and go in our lives. However, there are many people who have influenced my life and contributed to the woman I am today. You are on of "the thirty" that I am writing to for this purpose. In a small way or perhaps a big way, you have shaped me into the woman I have become and inspire me to continue to be in an even better way.
Later in her letter, she speaks from the heart about her job as a NICU nurse:

After seven years of doing this 'baby business' for work, I can say that I truly LOVE taking care of sick babies and their families. I have even grown to love taking care of the dying. It's made me grow far more than I ever knew was possible, far more than I expected a little preemie could do to me, or anyone for that matter. They touch my heart in so many ways each day and make me look at life from a different view...the fragileness of life at any moment, the 'real' things in life that make you laugh and cry; faith in God; the importance of family and friends that are your true support; the hard times that are in your life for a reason, far beyond what you can see; the blessing of an unconditional Lord; lots of love in your life...
Then, she ends:

At age 30 (or almost 30), I can truly say I have come so far and really found (or at least am in the process of finding) who I am as a woman, God's child, a wife, a daughter, a coworker, a nurse, a designer, a friend. I attribute all of this to God and to each of you. With God's help, each of you have formed me into who I am today, at this moment. You've loved me, taught me, inspired me, raised me, prayed for me or even helped me at my worst, having faith in me. Each of you have been in my life for a long time or for a very brief time or literally 'very little', but have taught me about life in an immeasurable way. For this I thank you. I am truly blessed. With gratitude and love, L.

All I have to say is that we are blessed to know you, L. Thank you again, from the bottom of our hearts, for your love, care and concern for our daughters, for your inspiration and friendship and for making a difference in their life. I know they will cherish being one of the thirty.

With L, on Discharge Day (1/29/03)


Did you have a NICU nurse that made a difference? Please, share your story with me, either in the comments, email or post on your blog and tell me about it!
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