Monthly Archives: January 2012

Little Globes

I found these little globes that were meant for candles. They are about four inches and have a flat bottom so they can actually sit on a shelf, but I prefer to hang them. I had planted twenty globes for my holiday shows and these five are what remained. They are quite difficult to plant. It invovles some chopsticks and delicate hands. The first in which I have no skills in and the second in which I genetically don’t contain. They are time consuming to create and must be done in the dead of night, so no little ears are burned with the vulgarity that spews from my mouth with frustration.

(I just impressed myself with that descriptive sentence. I may become a  blogger after all.)

Back to the subject at hand….I have one large rolling rack in the greenhouse that just contains planters that are made up. Hubby goes down and helps himself whenever he is in need of a gift for a coworker or client. He uses it as his own personal store, which it kind of is, since he finances the whole thing.

Anyhow……I just couldn’t bear putting these cute little treasures on the “rack”, so in the house they came.  I am limited in my “safe” plant space. Nala does enjoy chewing on foliage and is very ball driven. She can reach anything on counters and my sunroom looks like a jungle. Solution….some bent paper clips (classy right?) and ribbon pulled from the famous “craft closet.”

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These little treasures are currently hanging from my kitchen light fixture. Safe and sound!

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Martha Stewart, NOT

So…..we all remember about my AMAZING idea for decorating my mantle with candlesticks and my quest for these candle sticks. Well, I did some work on my AMAZING idea and it just seems that my AMAZING idea didn’t really pan out like I would have liked it to.

My first part was to search for a mirror to set the candles on. I scored! Target had a large wall mirror on clearance for 10 dollars. I had to modify it slightly to make it sit flat on the table, but it was what I had envisioned. Next, I needed to find some kind of adhesive in order to secure the candle sticks I was stacking. I started with adhesive tabs, but that didn’t seem to have enough stick to it. I moved to a product called “glue dots.” WOW!!! These things are supper sticky, can be stretched out to fit the size you need, and were about 3 dollars a box. I definitely will have these stocked in my craft closet.

Yes, I have a craft closet. It contains the start of my yarn craft phase, beading lamps phase, scrap booking phase, fabric stamping phase, sewing phase, and the most important thing, the electrical box for the house. Not quite organized, but not true chaos. That electrical box really hampered my “dream craft closet” idea.

So, I now have the mirror, candles, and stacked candles arranged in a pleasant configuration. I headed out to Hobby Lobby to look for ornaments. Yes, I know it’s January, but ever time I have gone into this store there has been a huge display (I mean several aisle full) of Christmas decoration. I had high hopes, the kids in tow, and my AMAZING idea almost complete.

Well…… can you believe it, they took ALL the Christmas decoration down. I asked the sales clerk “what was up with that” and was told it would be restocked in June. Yes, JUNE!!!!! Just the fact that they don’t have anything now, but will have inventory starting in June, cracked me up. I left the store in a fit of giggles with Mr. D asking/begging for some giant plastic eggs that they have displayed for Easter.

I have once again attempted an AMAZING idea…… I’ll update you in June when it is complete.

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Adoption Update for January

There has been 5 days of matching done for the month of January.  I am happy to see that some matching work was done, but still, at the rate they are going, it seems like an eternity until they will reach our LID.  From what I understand, China has a government office that deals just with international adoptions.  There is a huge backlog of families waiting to be matched with “a typical” child (there is a different wait time if you chose to go for a special needs child).  We are one of those families waiting for “a typical” child.  We started the paperwork in January of 2006.  Finished and sent it out that summer of 2006.  Our paperwork was approved in China on September 22, 2006.  That’s our LID …..log in date.  Each month China matches a certain number of families.  That number is posted and that is how we know that the wait is almost over.  The current date that China has matched till, is August 15, 2006.  August has 31 days and we are the 22 of September, so that makes 38 days to match before it is our turn.  That may seem like nothing, but when you see numbers like 3 days of matching for 1 month’s work, it can be depressing.  Of course, all government offices are closed now  for the Chinese New Years celebration.  I wonder what effect that will make on the numbers they match for February.  We can only hope that it will prompt them to start the new year with a bang!

At one point, I had reached out to all the families from our LID (9/22/06) group at the adoption agency we work with.  There were 13 of us.  Several families showed interest in making contact and we began corresponding.  None of those families are still adopting.  One family saw their youngest graduate high school and felt that they had passed the age to parent a toddler.  Several families switched to the special needs route (God bless them for that).  Many of them dropped out due to changes in jobs, marriage status, and cost.

We are holding strong.  Baby J is much loved and wanted.  She has had a nursery waiting for her for over five years.  She has had her stocking hung by the fire each Christmas.  She has a stock pile of gifts and a mountain of clothing waiting for her arrival.  She has a big sister who is growing older and can now be a babysitter versus a playmate.  She has a brother who was a surprise blessing and is so much wanting to be a “Big Brother.”

Our baby is in our prayers and thoughts all of the time.  Everytime…. I pass her room….see a baby held in her mother’s arms…a women who is pregnant….commercial for diapers…almost everything  and anything makes me think of her.  I think of her birth mother in China making the most difficult decision any mother would have to do.  I wonder how she is doing in her pregnancy.  Is she ill in the morning, does she crave anything, is there someone there supporting her or is she all alone in this difficult journey.  I wish for her to have peace with her decision.  I wish that she could somehow know that her daughter will be a cherished child and we will love her with all of our hearts.  I wish that my daughter would not have to mourn the loss of her first mother to be loved by me.  I remind myself that our adoption is a result of someone else’s tragedy.   If China did not have a “one child policy” where would we be in our journey to have a family.  I ponder these things and wonder what if…….

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Blooms in the Greenhouse

I went down to the greenhouse to do my weekly watering and rotation and look what I found.  This little succulent has a real leafy appearance, not your typical thick cactus leaf look, but more like lettuce.  It grew a stalk and bloom in about two weeks time and it’s flowers will last quite awhile.

This next plant has a short dark green leaf  and it grows upwards versus being short and bulky.  The flower it produces is  small and delicate.  It looks much like a white daisy.

Some flowers really look like  lawn weeds.  This one reminds me of a dandelion, yet doesn’t fall apart when touched.

As you can see from the photos, I keep my plants on large rolling racks.  Opa installed grow lights at the top of each rack and those are placed on timers.  Also, all my normal light fixtures are swapped out for grow lights.  There is a nice blue hue coming from the greenhouse.  I wonder if the neighbors ever question what is going on at our place. (We are the crazy young ones of the neighborhood.  You know, the ones that set off fireworks for any occasion they can think of.  That’s us!)

Ok, back on topic……all my seedlings are planted in 3 inch pots with drainage.  I have them in groups on trays.  This makes it easier to pull them down when caring for them and when I’m planting.

Currently the business is going really slow.  I mean, like no sales this year slow…. but I am alright with that, I think?  I don’t have any shows lined up, but have some leads on some spring home shows that I might be interested in having a booth at.  I did a lot of gift planters for Christmas and I think I will do some marketing for Mother’s Day.  The online shop is still not up and running. (there goes that resolution)  I looked at what would be involved in shipping live plants during the cold season.  There are these heating packs you can use, but they only work for a limited time period and are quite expensive.  I have a big concern of plants freezing during transport in this cold weather.  So, I pushed back the online store until the weather in warmer and I don’t need to worry about shipping them.

My inventory won’t go bad, it will only grow bigger.  I just need to put the work in maintaining them and not killing them.  I see this as a positive, or at least trying to!  I am able to see how these succulents grow and at what pace and size.  I also am seeing the blooms and life process of plants that I would have normally turned around quickly and sold.

Hubby just calls me a “plant hoarder” (in the most lovingly way) and that this business of mine is just a way of legitimizing my need of acquiring these little plants.  I just love looking through catalogs and picking them out.  When they arrive, I spend hours unpacking and repotting them.  It is unbelievable the variety of succulents out there.  We have “Ohio Hardy” succulents that can weather out the winter, but they are just standard and there is really nothing special about them.   I am dealing with the more delicate varieties.  I have them shipped in from California and they are just amazing!

I only hope that with time I will be able to get this business profitable, or at least breaking even and pay for my little plant addiction.

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Mr. Pinchy update

We are sorry to announce that Mr. Pinchy passed away at some point yesterday.  There was a small and quick funeral by flush held in the hallway powder room.  Services were preformed by Hubby and the children were not in attendance.

We now know that when a hermit crab decides to wander around his habitat without his shell, it’s not a good thing.

May you rest in peace Mr. Pinchy.

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Mommy break

Mommy had a day out!!!

A dear friend of mine, fellow adoptive mom and Shopping Buddy, gave me a wonderful day of shopping and girl time. I have been on the quest of finding glass/crystal candlesticks for my mantle. I had seen a magazine that had a beautiful holiday display of all different candlesticks with red ornaments on them. It was so elegant, yet simple and right up my alley. I had mentioned this to her and she said I should take a look at some antique shops. So plans were made to go antiquing and my goal of our shopping trip was to find some candlesticks.

We started our day at nine sharp. Hubby had the helm and was planning a fun filled “Daddy Day”.

(don’t ask, that’s a story for another day)

We girls, hit the road with Mr. D yelling from the garage in his pj’s “happy shopping” and “don’t forget to bring me back a present.” The first stop was not exactly on our “plan”, but was a must do. Shopping Buddy had a 30% coupon for Kohl’s and that was just a no brainer. We hit the racks and found some great bargains. What a difference it is when shopping without munchkins. I was in the zone, focused, and determined to get some great deals.  (No need to worry about bathroom breaks, snacks, drinks, hiding in racks, or going missing.)  I came out with some great clothes for next winter for the kids, some birthday presents for a future party, socks for Hubby, tops for me, and a spider book for Mr. D.

I also decided to start Ms. A on a charm bracelet. She came home with straight A’s this quarter, so I thought I would reward her with some bling. I have an extra Pandora bracelet at home and saw that they carry a line of beads that are compatible. The sale was buy one get one half off and then I had 30% off on the total. I was able to get her four cute beads, which I think she will love.

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Next thing I know, it’s lunch time. We stop to get a bite and I give a quick call home. The phone gets picked up way to quickly and the connection was bad, or that’s what I thought the problem was. I then find out that Ms. A was practicing on her new recorder and Mr. D was too. Hubby had found an old one in our music box that I had from college. All the education majors had to take a music class and we college students had named the class “Clapping for Credit” and this wonderfully loud little instrument a Flute-a-phone.

Needless to say, Hubby was at the end of his rope and had to quickly get off the line to stop a sword fight that had erupted.

My guilt lasted just until we reached our first store. It was old, the floors creaked, the shelves were overloaded, it smelled, and it was so much fun!!! I didn’t know where to look  first, there was just so much to take in. Shopping Buddy was able to give me a quick tutorial on glass and makers and off we went. I didn’t find any candlesticks, but I did find this.

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I have always wanted a huge glass jar to put coins in. I can’t wait to clean it out and finally put all the spare change floating around our house in one localized vessel.

We hit a few more old and smelly places and I had some great success.
I didn’t want to have any candlesticks the same size and I wanted to get some unique pieces. I found out that they usually sell in pairs (go figure) and the ones I really like were out of my price range.

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I had a great day out with a friend, Hubby managed to get some work done during his busy day with the kids, and I have a great start on a beautifully decorated mantel.

Retail Therapy, really is THERAPY for this Mommy!

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It’s been one of those days!

First off, this is the third try on this entry….. ARGGG….  I finally put the iPad down and sat at my desk top.   Maybe I will have better luck!

My day started off with this.  A very out of sorts four year old, sucking his thumb and rubbing a tag that he found on the inside of his jacket.  We had gotten up at a regular time and sent Ms. A off to the bus stop.  I then packed up our ski gear and we headed for the slopes.  It was cold and the wind was blowing and after about an hour of going up and down the bunny hill,  I asked if he was done.  He said yes, so we headed in and got our gear off.  As we start heading out the door, he tells me he “changed his mind” and wants to keep skiing.  I said that we made our choice and we are going home.   And that’s when it begins……

After lunch I notice the “beloved” hermit crab crawling around his habitat sans shell.  That can’t be a good sign.  Mind you, we have a variety of other shells for him/her to chose from, so I am perplexed at this situation.

…So here is a fun story…….A hermit crab is the most dull pet you could own.  The children were insistent on getting these creatures.  I caved, thinking this would be a better choice than the snake Mr. D was rooting for or the hamster Ms. A was wanting.  So, off to our local Petco to purchase our new family members.  We get the larger tank, because bigger is better, right?  Then comes the special sand, coconut husk that needs daily misting, food dish, water dish, saltwater dish, climbing things, and things to hide under.  I mean we have these little guys hooked up.  Mr. D picks his and names it Mr. Pinchy and Ms. A gives it the name Shelly.  Everyone is so excited about the new additions.  Oma and Opa are invited to dinner to meet them.  You would have thought it was a new puppy, the way they were acting.  Anyhow, that evening I put Mr. D to bed and he wants to say goodnight to Mr. Pinchy.  He proceeds to tell me he is nowhere to be found.  I then explained that he probable dug into the sand to sleep.  Off to bed he goes, and Ms. A does some searching.

“Mom, Mr. Pinchy is gone!”

We go and examine the habitat and she is right.  No Mr. Pinchy.  We then see a trail of sand across the table and some on the floor. Mr. Pinchy climbed up the “climbing” log and out of the cage.  I underestimated their mobility and we then quickly fabricated a lid to keep Shelly in.  Everyone went on a search and no Mr. Pinchy was found.  The blame was then placed on Nala, because she eats everything.

“Mom, are you going to tell D?” “NO!,  and neither are you.”

He had school the next day and that would have been a major crisis in the house if the truth was discovered.  The next morning he comes running down and asks to hold Pinchy.  I tell him that he is still sleeping and maybe after school he would be up.  Off to school they go and I go off to the petstore.  Lucky for me, I remembered that he was medium size and had a white shell.  How hard can that be to replace.

Three stores later and the replacement was found.  The kids come home from school and go straight to the tank.  “My, Mr. Pinchy has grown.” says Ms. A.  I then take a better look and see that Pinchy is now twice the size of Shelly.  “Oh, I bet he really likes his food.”

After giving Ms. A a glaring look, it was dropped and life went on until three days later…. Mr. Pinchy (the original) was found.  I come down in the morning and see something on the tile floor.  Here I thought Nala brought in a rock or something, but no, it scuttled across the floor.  Mr. Pinchy survived and now we have three crabs.  I call Hubby, who had already left for work, and say “Mr. Pinchy is reincarnated.”

How was I going to explain this one… Not….. I just let it be and waited for someone to notice.  It took about a week and somehow Mr. D believed it was a stowaway from another shell.  Ms. A just thought it was hilarious.  So now we have Mr. Pinchy, Shelley, and Houdini.

I hope this naked thing he is doing is just a phase?

……It has been just one of those days.  Nothing really memorable happened, yet I was so pleased to see the kids tucked in and the house fall silent.  It always seem the days that Hubby has to work late is the day that my patience is tested in ever way .  The dog refusing to go out in the cold to go to the potty.  The milk left in the fridge with only a few drops left.  The farthest spot in the parking lot at the grocery store with Mr. D jumping in every slushy puddle.  The bag carrying the newly purchased milk breaking and dropping on the ground.  Homework not found in the take home folder.  Dance class canceled do to bad weather, found out once we arrived at the studio. Dinner not being a success (threats were made to get them to finish).  None of the pictures I took, going to the “cloud”, so that I can download them to the blog.  (probably due to the fact I was messing around with that video of Nala in her boots)  Lastly, not being able to work the new T.V. after the kids watched a DVD and missing my favorite show (BIG BANG).

Oh sweetness…  Hubby called…. He set the DVR via his phone….I am off to the recliner to watch my show.

Sleep well!!

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