Saturday, January 31, 2009


Jeff told me about this news story last night. I laughed and laughed and I am SO sorry that I didn't see it for myself.

Apparently someone hacked into one of the lighted digital road signs here in Austin. They broke the pad lock, hacked into the system and changed the words.

I know, I know - it is unsafe. But it is still pretty darn funny.

My friend Becky told me that it was even on Fox News on-line and CNN on-line. What a hoot!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Lesson on Milk

Today's savings is brought to you by Sam's club.

1 Gallon 2% Milk
Sam's Club
Poinsettia Brand $2.82

Good Value Brand $3.79
Oak Farms Brand $4.45

7 gallons per week
4 weeks in a month
28 gallons per month
$.97 saved per gallon
$27.16 saved per month
$325.92 saved per year

And even when you take out the $40 for the Sam's Club membership, we are still saving a whopping $285.92.

Wow - isn't that fantastic!

Stay tuned for my next grocery lesson. I've got tons of tricks up my sleeve!

Cart Talk

Place: WalMart Grocery section
Sweet Old Lady: How old is your little girl? She sure is pretty.
Me: 5 Months old and thank you so much.

I guess the blue camo shirt and blue striped pants gave his gender away. hee hee Although I will say that it seems to me like people always think very happy and smiley babies are girls.

As you can tell, it made us both chuckle!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Unrest in the Forest

Our beloved Zilker Park is under major construction. The city and private donors are spending a gazillion dollars to fix the grass and add new sprinklers.

Everyday I drive through the park at least twice. Everyday I am thankful for the truly beautiful area that we live in. I mean seriously, so so so much green. And the trees, the trees, trees, trees. Everywhere I look are incredible trees.

But lately, I have found myself feeling a bit sad for the trees. No, they are not dying. They are not hurt. And when spring comes around again, they will be in their full glory.

But I feel bad for them because they are being protected by the dead friends. I wonder what it would be like to be a tree and to be protected by your friends that have been cut down.

I am glad that they are taking measures to protect the trees. I understand why they are doing it.

I guess I just think it is a bit ironic. Don't you think? A little too ironic.

Camera Worthy

There are a lot of times that I wish I had the camera with me. Most of the time I am at the store and have left the camera in the car and it is too hard to go back to the car and grab it with all of the kids in tow.

Well today, I actually took the baby out of the basket and we went back to get the camera because I was so frustrated.

We buy a LOT of groceries. I primarily shop at Sam's Club, Sun Harvest and HEB. Sun Harvest is a little grocery store that offers top quality products. I go to Sun Harvest once a week. I only shop the ad. If there is something that we eat and it is on sale, then I buy it. Their sales are incredible. Last week, I went over our grocery budget because they had boneless skinless chicken breast on sale for $1.77 per pound. That is more than half off. I spent $20 extra dollars on groceries because it was such a good deal.

So all of this to say, I do really love Sun Harvest.

But today, man-o-man, today, I was irritated. I go in to see what is on special. The things that interest me are the green bell peppers (2 for $1), the large tomatoes (2lbs for $1), the D'Anjou pears ($.77 per lb.) and the Fuji apples (2lbs for $1).

I went to check out and my total was $9.76. I knew it wasn't the right total, but there was a long line behind me and I had that moment of self doubt that I must have seen a price wrong.

Well, low and behold, I go back to the produce department to check my prices and this is what I found. They charged me $1.49 per lb. for Gala apples instead of $.50 per lb for Fuji apples. ARGHH!!! I'm holding a small baby trying to pick out and bag up the best apples. I didn't take time to look at the little stickers. Apparently, there are TWO types of apples on this display. Don't you think that a sign would be nice???? I grabbed the apples on my left because I thought they were prettier. They weren't $.99 per lb. prettier though. Can you see my confusion???

And then I had to stand back in the line and get a refund. Now don't take this post the wrong way. I'm not a hater. It just really bugged me that I was made to feel like I had the problem - not the guy in produce. I asked him if all of the apples on that stand were on sale, he replied with a dry 'no - just the Fuji'. I am not sure what planet he is living on, but a savings of $3.53 is a big deal to me.

That is THREE Route 44 sodas at Sonic during happy hour.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

You Know Which Family

We always hear the comment that you know which family SBW belongs to. People often say how much our kids favor each other or that you can tell those Carr kids belong together.

Lately, I've been more aware. They do favor each other. They all have the same color eyes, which is not the same as me (brown) or JC (hazelish). They all have the same dotted nose.

I've made a little page for myself, to help me remember. Can you tell which is which?

SBW for President

And he even has a tooth!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

No Regrets

A handful of years ago, I was in New York City for business. I was staying in an apartment belonging to a friend of a friend on the upper west side. The apartment was full of beautiful art. The walls were smiling because they held art from floor to ceiling. There was one particular piece that I fell in love with. I wrote the passage down and on a scratch piece of paper and carried it around with me for a couple of years. Not so long ago, I decided it was finally time to buy this piece that I've carried close to my heart for so long.

I love it. It is what I see each time I walk into our bedroom. It touched me many years ago, it moves me today. Thank you Story People. You can't possibly know what your beautiful art means to me.

Laughing oh "SO" Hard

Found a new to "me" blog tonight. Keep coming back to it cause it cracks me "right" up.

Hope "you" enjoy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Lesson Learned

I was recently hurt by a friend. A friend that doesn't even know that I know that they hurt me. Kinda crazy, huh?

You see, I needed help. I called out to a friend (in desperation) and asked the friend for a favor. Well, me being the one with mouth wide open, shared why I needed the help. The friend was so kind to help me in my afternoon 3 hours of need.

The downside is that the friend decided that it would be okay to tell others that I needed help and why I needed the help. I don't recall ever saying not to tell. But I assumed that this friend would know that since I don't normally make it a habit to share - or even talk to others - that I wouldn't want my words given freely to the happy to listen and share neighbors.

I am bummed.

Then others told others and then those others told their others, and low and behold, all of Melrose Place (er...Barton Hills) now knows why I asked for help. (I could be exaggerating a bit.)

What a total bummer.

I don't generally ask for help.

Asking for help isn't a bad thing.

The bad thing is opening my mouth when asking for said help.

Do I learn to keep my trap shut or not ask for help?

Hmmmm...I don't even know.

I do know, however, that gossip sucks. Most especially when it is told in a fashion very similar to the old school telephone game.

Who knew that belly dancers riding purple elephants could be spotted stepping off of space ships in my back yard.

But shhhhhh...I'd hate for the secret to get out.

And then there is that thing about forgiveness...


One More Thought

And if any of you neglected friends/family would like more proof that I am having a little bit of a hard time trying to get into the swing of things - I give you this.

I've only been wearing one sock since 9am this morning. I thought about putting the other one on, but couldn't find it and then got distracted.

One cold foot, one hot foot.

Ahhhh, the spice of life.

Mantra for Today

(Note: No children or pedestrians were harmed while I was driving down the road, trying to take the photo, tend to the five kids, answer the phone, drink a Big Gulp, eat an ice cream cone and sing at the top of my lungs. Just sayin'.)

The Reason

I got a lovely email from a dear friend today. She asked me if she had wronged me in someway. Now one might wonder why she would ask me that question - oh except for the fact that I haven't responded to a handful of emails that she has sent me.


I read them. I thought about responding. I meant to respond.

Then somehow I got distracted.

With this...

and this...

with this...

and this...

oh and lets not forget this...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Dead Already

I love poinsettias. I really do. But I can never buy myself a poinsettia. Because you see, if I buy myself a poinsettia then that would be the same as taking the money and throwing it out the window. Although if I threw the money out the window, maybe some sweet homeless person would catch it and go buy themselves a 40oz. And that would be actually helping someone. Oh geez - where am I going with this???

My friend Becky gave me a poinsettia for Christmas. It was a little bitty baby poinsettia, but I loved it like it was 10 feet tall. The kids knew as soon as they saw it that it would end up being one of my very favorite gifts of the season. They see me eye the poinsettia's at the store. I touch them. Turn them. Take pictures beside them. I really just love them.

Too bad that I am a poinsettia murderer. I am sorry Becky. My prized poinsettia is already dead. I tried. I mean really really tried. I loved her while she was alive.

Man - what a bummer.


A few weeks ago, my friend in real life made a post on her blog about her baby named Victoria. I couldn't believe my eyes when I looked at the pictures. I have Victoria! I LOVE Victoria. She was my very first baby. We had matching clothes. I carried her around by her leg until her leg fell off, my granny kept fixing her for me, and the leg just kept falling off.

So, Christy and her family came over to have dinner with us on New Year's Day. I asked her to bring her baby. Seeing her doll and my doll was enough to almost make me cry. I know that sounds corny, but she loves her baby too. She kept her all of these years just like me. So we got our baby dolls together and took some pictures. Her Victoria is wearing the blue dress. It was a dress that Christy wore as a baby. I went to my closet and pulled out a blue dress that I wore as a baby and it was almost exactly the same. (C.R.A.Z.Y.)

My Victoria lived with my Granny for a while when Jeff and I were young and moving around. When I got her back, my Granny had put her in this pink dress and matching bonnet. I have called my mom and asked her if she knows where Victoria's white dress with a pink bow is. I can almost guarantee that she has it in her cedar chest.

Who could know that one baby doll could give so many little girls so much love. I know that my cousins Codi and Niecie have Victoria. And I recently found out that our friend Betsy has her too.

Unbelievable. Thank you Madame Alexander for creating a baby for so many little girls to love. Thank you thank you thank you!

The December Whirlwind

Here's what has happened in our world in the last few weeks...

Dec. 11 Grandma Cathy and Grandpa Steve arrive for a visit before the holidays. We all had a great time together. The first night they were here, we took them to spin in circles underneath the Zilker Park Christmas tree. As you can tell by the photo, they were definitely in the holiday spirit!

There were lots of games of badmitton and checkers played while they were here.

The kids also gave them a preview of the pieces they've been working on for their piano recitals and orchestra holiday performance.

Dec. 13 We took the day off from work and school and took Grandma Cathy and Grandpa Steve for a day trip to Pedernales State Park. It was the perfect day for a hike and we all had a very relaxing enjoyable time.

Dec. 20 Christoph and MarCar arrive for a weekend of family fun. We headed out to look at the wacky 32nd street lights. And GASP!!! - Margot wore her pajama pants out in public! (tee hee, just hafta give her a hard time about it!)

One of our favorite displays is the sock monkey manager. We always look for it at the end of the street. We will all be very sad if they ever decide not to put it out.

Dec. 21 Margot and Chris help us get ready for our big Christmas party. We would have never gotten everything done without them. I am also happy to report that the party was a huge success and fun was had by the little kids and the big kids!

Dec. 22 Spent the day at home trying to get ready for Christmas. Poor poor Marcellus was trying so hard not to face the chaos that surrounded him. Sweet children cover him up so that he can be comfy during his nap.

Dec. 23 I would like to say thank you to the person that came up with the idea of having an ice skating rink on the top of the Whole Foods Market during the Christmas Season. I LOVE IT! The kids love it. It is a little bit pricey, but for a normal sized family, it is totally doable. What a fun way to spend an afternoon!

Jeff and I are both starting to get to the point where we don't so much enjoy the Trail of Lights at Zilker Park. But this year I came up with a new game plan and it seemed to work beautifully! We went on the last night that it was open in the last 30 minutes. There was not so much of a crowd, our kids could see all of the festive displays and we didn't feel like we were being run over by herds of people. You just have to remember to not poke around though because a little after 10pm, the police start clearing you out.

Dec. 24 Somehow in the beginning of our parenting years, we started taking the kids to see Santa on Christmas Eve. This is one tradition that has definitely stuck, but I don't know why because we generally have to stand in line at the mall for HOURS. So again we waited, and waited and waited and finally we are in the front.

Everyone had a great time visiting with Santa, I even got a little choked up when I went to give him a hug and say thanks. Being Santa is truly a tough job.

Momo arrived while we were visiting Santa. We had a really nice evening watching The Christmas Story, eating candy and making the house Santa ready. After the kids went to sleep, we started wrapping the gifts. JC, Momo and I were all frantically wrapping Santa presents for five. We finally got to bed at 4:15am after wrapping all of the presents from Santa.

Dec. 25 Kids wake up at 4:20am and are SO excited to start unwrapping. We let them get up at 4:45am because I couldn't stand the tapping on the wall and the excited chatter. (Yes, you read that right - we slept for approx. 15 minutes.)
Sweet Baby Wyatt seemed to love his first Christmas just as much as the older four!

Dec. 26 Momo leaves and Heather and Steve arrive. Everything is perfect in the world.

Dec. 27 I come down with strep throat and am not really able to get out of the bed until Dec. 30. Phooey. I was even so sick that I had to get a shot in the rump. Boy-o-boy did the kids feel sorry for me!

Dec. 28. Crap - best friend comes from another country and I am not even able to open my eyes to visit with her while she sits by my bedside.

Dec. 29 SBW takes his first formula because the doctor makes me stop nursing for 24 hours because I am so sick. I really wanted to cry.

Dec. 30 Drove down to San Marcos for some yummy food at Herbert's Taco Shack. Good food and catching up with our good friend (HB's brother) Dallas.

You might have never guess that I'd been sick because then we came home and started getting ready for the NYE shindig. Shopping 'til 3am with my BFF to get ready for the big ol' partay was one of the highlights of the week for me.

Dec. 31 The house begins to fill with our closest life long friends, Christoph and MarCar and our good friend Becky and we are ready to ring in the new year. Lots of laughs. Too much to drink. Very little sleep. All is good in the world.

Jan. 1 Giant brisket, honey baked ham, honey baked turkey, black-eyed peas, cabbage, mashed taters, some sweets, college football all day and a few hands of cards. Kids running round drinkin' grape soda. Full bellies, warm hearts good friends and family. Could life be ANY better?

Jan. 1st PM We (HB, CB and KC) sneak out to the Kohl's to help HB pick up a few needed items before heading back to the land of nutty sizes and no decent shopping. This was the TOPS!!!!! Then we all sat up with Allen until 2:30am having the very best visit and laughing at all of his funny stories.

Jan. 2 We had a nice and easy morning that was mostly spent trying hard not to cry. Heather and Steve were getting ready to leave. So I tried to drag out their stay by making them pose for every picture option possible!

Once they were finally able to break free, we all stood at the end of the driveway and watched them drive away. They are headed back to Germany for now, but will be home in only 8 months. Hey, at least if I get pregnant again, she'll be here when the baby is born!

Later that afternoon, two grown-ups and 8 kids head off to see the Bedtime Stories movie. Ice cream for supper for mom and 7 kids. JC and Tommy head to dinner. Late nite trip to little local bar for me and Tommy. Chew the fat and drink some beers - life is good.

Jan. 3 Thomas and kids leave to head back to Dallas with a pit-stop in Round Rock. Our house is WAY too quiet.

We are all so tired. Happy tired. We've been non-stop since the kids got out of school on Dec. 19th. I am again SO thankful for my family. Jeff is an outstanding dad that is really having a hard time being actually beaten by his 12 year old son in ping pong. The kids have shown so much love and kindness toward each other, their friends and their family this holiday season. I just can't express how much I love Jeff and the kids. The friend visits have been superb. I wish the holiday season lasted all year long.

We just might leave our Christmas tree up until next year!

I'm Selfish

And if that is what I am then so be it.

Gonna cry all day long. The kids went back to school today and I hate it. They are my friends. We have a good time together. I like them.

They L.O.V.E. school and I am glad. We've worked hard to get them into this school and this neighborhood. I am SO SO SO glad we are here.

I just miss them. I don't love the quiet house. Thank goodness for my SBW. If it wasn't for him, I'd prolly sit here and cry until 2:45.