Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Almost Half-Full Cup

February just brings me down.  I say this easily, but let me tell you, I look forward to nothing in the entire month.  If it isn't the cold and the weather, then it is the high gas bill or a sickness or something equally...blah.

So, I decided that for a week I would try to list and focus on the good things, the blessings.  I was not going to focus on the stuff that makes me my natural pessimistic self.  Not that I don't believe in thinking positive, because I do in many situations.  But my natural response to things is ticking off the negative before getting around to the positive.  I try to do this in my head, so as not to negatively influence my girls or anyone else, but sometimes fighting against your pessimistic nature is tough.

For the most part, I did pretty good with my list of good things.  Yesterday was a tough one, though.  Maybe that was because I tried to extend my experiment another week...

Monday:  I finished a good book, The Help by Kathryn Stockett.  Really appreciated it on many levels.  I also enjoyed my Darby.  She remembers everything about Greek mythology, in detail, so she explained the lastest adventure movie, Percy Jackson and the Olympians:  The Lightning Thief.  (My pessimistic self would like to point out that just about everything else on Monday stunk.)
Tuesday:  got a good haircut.  Nothing is more positive than good hair.
Wednesday:  volunteered at the school and looked cute doing it, then had a mini date with Scottie.
Thursday:  watched Big Love.  Feel pretty good about myself considering how mixed up that polygamist family is.
Friday:  prepped for my Bible class.  I am always happy when I am ready for that one.  I also got to eat some yummy and free breakfast sandwiches.  And then, spent a couple of hours focusing on Channing Tatum in "Dear John."  I hope to focus on him again in the near future, because I liked doing that :)
Saturday:  went to the Ladies' Retreat.  Drove up, had some visiting time, then found a huge, glorious outlet mall out in the boonies of North Georgia that is well worth the drive.  Being that I have not spent a day away from my children in quite a while (like last year, Ladies' Retreat), this day topped my Friday good things.
Sunday:  Lord's Day.  It was all good, even the part where we all cleaned the house.  The clean house makes me so happy on Monday, and Tuesday, and all the other days after that.
Monday:  Made a new recipe in my dutch oven, and it was quite a yummy event.  Love my cast iron dutch oven, love my chicken and peppers in vinegar.
Tuesday:  Sweet card from my daughter.  And good news from the doctor, even though the wait and the copay nearly cancelled this one out.  Oops, the pessimist emerges yet again...
Wednesday:  I'm at a loss.  Where is my positive moment?  I found a spot on the ceiling, the wind was freezing me, had to pay some bills.  Yuck.  I guess the positive moment was my whole family sharing the guacomole I made at dinner.  When life hands you overripe, brown, squishy avacadoes, make guacamole.

I decided to take a vacation from my optimistic outlook today.  But I am happy to say, even though I am on a break, my cup is almost half full.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I woke up to this card today, taped to my 'fridge.  Roxy, thank you for my happy moment today.  This is all I need :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Thank You Dagwood - Another Sandwich Please

This morning Scott and I went to a research and development tasting of breakfast at our favorite sandwich shop, Dagwood's.  It is a very yummy lunch place and they make sandwiches that look like something Dagwood would eat, as in the Blondie cartoon.  Scott happens to eat at Dagwood's as often as possible, knows the whole crew, and scored us an invite to the breakfast tasting.

Yum.  Sandwich after sandwich of very good stuff.  Most everything is pressed, panini-style, of which I am a big fan.  They are featuring a pastrami-egg-cheese with Russian dressing sandwich and it is really, really good.  I have never had the opportunity to sample food like this.  But with applewood smoked bacon on everything, you can do no wrong with me.

Hopefully they will start the breakfast menu next week.  I recommend just about everything :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Life Lessons

I have become somewhat fixated with trying to teach some life lessons to my daughters.  There are so many things that you learn, mostly from bad experiences, and I would like for them to hurry up and learn all this stuff.  I am focusing on these lessons right now:

1.  Pick up all of your debris BEFORE Daddy comes home.  I don't know how many times they want to irritate their father, but my single shot warning method is not working (tell them Daddy will be home soon - is the house a mess?) and I refuse to issue more than one warning because that would put me in the same catergory as the nagging woman in Proverbs (the one who makes the man want to sit on the roof of his house just to get away from her.)

2.  Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize.  In Janurary and February, you must rub lotion on your hands at least two times a day, if not more.  My daughters are currently studying/sleeping with sticky Vaseline hands, trying to heal their cracked skin.  Ouch.

3.  Put your homework in your book bag right after you finish it.  Enough said.

4.  Do not wash your hair five minutes before it is time to go to church.  My husband is completely confused by this lesson, but he has never been resposible for taking a girl with a ten pound afro, dripping wet, to church on Sunday morning.  I need not mention the need for combing out the 'fro, because if you have seen the girl, you would know that combing is at least 20 minutes of pain, drama, and nappiness.

5.  Communicate.  Your needs, your wants, your everything.  Don't blame me for not having extra sensory perception.  I am the MOST perceptive person in this house and I use my mom super powers often, but unspoken needs are usually unmet needs.

6.  Get dressed in less than five minutes.  Making others wait on you is a sign of narcissism.  Don't fall into that category in this house.

7.  Wear winter clothes in the winter.  You have warm boots and warm clothes for a good reason.

8.  Don't leave your swimsuit and towel wadded up under your bed or in the bottom of the workout bag.  That is just plain nasty.

9.  Spit out your toothpaste directly over the drain in the sink.  I'm tired of looking at your spit and no one wants to clean up after you anyway.

10.  It is a pleasure to raise you, my beloved daughters.  The treasured moments are the simple ones that you least expect to have the most meaning.  No matter what happens, remember that I give you a hug and a kiss every morning when you head out on your day.  I will try to have some fresh baked cookies ready for you when you come home (at least a couple times a month.)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Whose Woods These Are

It was fun while it lasted - but alas, our perfect snow is all gone.  One of my most fulfilling moments of this snowy day was playing with Darby in the front yard, making our snowmen inspired by Calvin and Hobbes.  Darby pauses and talks about how our yard reminds her of Robert Frost's "Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening."  Our eclectic inspiration of a cartoon character's snowmen was interrupted by the deep thoughts of an eleven year old girl who appreciates poetry and sees her world in the poetry she has read.  Sometimes I wonder what she is thinking, and this reminds me that she is remembering literature and poetry she has read.  Darby's gift for memorization has been apparent since she was one year old, and I am thrilled that she has kept a lot of good stuff in her head.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Perfect Bite

I made these babies last week for a Super Bowl/Small Group get together.  I must say, I think these make a perfect bite.  They are called BBQ Jalapeno Poppers and are so worth the cooking effort.  Thank you Pioneer Woman for the recipe.  I am plowing through the whole cookbook and I am enjoying the edible moments, but these are definitely coming back - again and again and again.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Franks' Fam - the Snowy Version

Wow - a great day.  Valentine doughnuts this morning with the girls, a beautiful snowfall in the afternoon, a fresh batch of cookies after school, two six foot, goofy snowmen at twilight, and now a pot of chili and the Olympics.  Oh, and Scott did NOT work today (that is the best part!)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Friday Night Out

I took the girls to the elementary school's family dance on Friday night.  It is a pretty fun party with lots of people dressing up, lots of food, lots of loud music.  Based on that information, it should not be a shocker to you, Scott's relatives, that Scott did not go with us.

But the girls had a good time.  There was a dance studio group there that pumped up everyone in the crowd and led hundreds of people in big, group dances.  I did not participate due to the fact that I never learned a dance in any way, shape, or form.  So I got to smile at the hundreds of people all doing the Hammer dance, Cha Cha slide, and the Cupid Shuffle.  Pretty fun.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Nothing But Net - Twice!

I will never claim to be a photographer due to a painfully lacking artistic eye, but I TRIED to get some basketball shots of the Rockstar today.  For Roxy, today was a breakout performance, one we had been hoping to see.  She played excellent defense, made rebounds, and made four points - nothing but net each time.  She missed four baskets, and those were very close to going in as well.

Roxy is bonding with her team, the team is really gelling together, and they came back from halftime down 12-0 and beat the undefeated opponent by six points.  In second grade terms, it became a blowout - 26 points in one half.

Until today, Roxy had never even taken a shot during the game.  Now her teammates know that if they get the ball to her, she can really do something with it!  Go Upward Basketball!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Roxy's Fable

Roxy wrote a fable at school and it is a good one.  I think of all the hours I have spent reading books to Roxy.  I think of all of the dollars spent on books that will stimulate her mind.  I feel sad for those children who have no parent willing to teach the value of reading to their kids, to model it and expect their children to find a love for reading.  Both of my girls love reading and it makes me one happy momma.  And now, both of my children can write stories.  Roxy may not be able to spell, but everything else is sweet seven-year-old perfection :)