Saturday, May 30, 2009


Wowzers! Thank you so much for reading my ridiculous ramblings!

This is All I'm Sayin'

To Cut or Not to Cut

Jared and I have been allowing Tanner to grow his hair to show his individuality. He asked us to quit cutting it months ago after he saw a picture of Willy Nelson! Jared and I both agreed he could go shaggy as long as it wasn't in his eyes or over his collar.

Well, we found pictures of our little boy with a fresh hair cut and we had forgotten just how nice it looked. This is Tanner last summer:
This is Tanner last week:

I started commenting that we would probably cut it this week since it's getting so hot. He didn't really object too much. I've made several comments now and he seems on board. Thankfully his buddy Corbin who was also growing his hair came to church with a much shorter do (Thank you Alisa!). I want to encourage him to be himself vs always following Brennan's lead but at the same time I don't want people confusing him with cousin "It."

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Random Thoughts

-Okay, no news is good news right? The new widget stays at least until I get bored with it. I am really enjoying reading previous posts. Last night I got lost reading all the post that dealt with deciding on another baby. It's priceless to read all our thoughts and prayers for our little Anneliese and to be able to snuggle her while reading them.

-I spent a good 3 hours cleaning my van today. It's officially on the market and I wanted to detail it so it shined :) The thing I've been asking myself all day is why would I clean it for a random stranger while I drove it for 16 mos and never once shampooed it? It's soo pretty and clean. It smells wonderful and I think it will show very well. Now we just have to pray someone will come and snatch it up :)

-The obvious next post would be, We found a new van! It's a super long story but I'll cut to the chase. Older couple buy brand new van. Said couple takes exceptional care of the van and add little extras here and there to improve the value. They barely drive it for a few years and then sell it for thousands below value. Current market is flooded with similar vans so we get a fantastic deal on a beautiful van! Mommy's HAPPY!

-After shampooing my light gray interior until my arms hurt I'm super thankful to say the new van has dark carpet. The seats and carpet are a deep taupe. That's perfect for 5 dirty little kiddos.

-This morning on Craigslist an 05' Toyota Sienna came up. It was $16,000 and had 56,000 miles on it. While checking it out I had a thought. The Toyota's are known for longevity and quality but they are so expensive I could buy 2 Dodge Caravans for the same money. Our new van has far less miles and cost WAY less. I can drive my van til it dies, buy another one and then drive it until it dies and likely outlast the Sienna. How does dropping $16 grand on a 4 (almost 5) year old vehicle make sense?

-Our little girl HATES riding in the car. We had to drive to Lee Summit to check out the van and she screamed 30 minutes out of the hour it took to get there and 45 minutes home. Tomorrow we have to run to the bank (in Easton Ks) in the morning to sign papers, then drive to Merriam to pick up the van, and then to the airport to pick up my mom. We all need your prayers.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

New Widget

Apparently my friends Alisa and Jenny found a new widget and I thought I'd try it. It's called "link within."

I'm just curious, do you like it or is it annoying?

I like trying different things and I usually will add things that I like from other blogs and avoid those that I wasn't too fond of.

I'm unsure of this one. Let me know!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sunday, May 24, 2009

First Shoes

Anneliese wore her first pair of sandals to church today. They were so cute they needed to be documented.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Freshening Up Update

I wrote a previous post about considering BareMinerals. After doing quite a bit of research (including TIVO-ing the infomercial) I decided to try it out.

I have to say I'm in love. It's easy to apply and I like the idea of just looking fresh and natural vs "made up." With my fair skin I'm a big fan of the 20 spf the foundation offers.

Since it's pricey I decided to go the ebay route and I saved at least 30% on most and 50% on some. It all comes brand new and unopened. Not only did I save money but I didn't have to drag my 4 boys and girl into a make up store in a mall. That's a huge plus for all involved.

My recommendation is to go ahead and let the lady at Sephora do your makeover. Take notes on what you like and then go home and shop via ebay. It's a little scary buying make up online when you have no idea if the shade is right. I was fortunate and love everything I bought.

Now I just hope what I bought lasts about a year :)

Expensive Paper Weight

About 2 years ago Jared and I purchased a new TV.

Not just any TV but a Sony Wega 42" HiDef flat screen blah blah blah. All I knew is that once we turned it on Sponge Bob was life size and very bright. It has a beautiful picture and we purchased it so it could fit into my armoire. We loved this tv and were so thankful when my mom helped us purchase it.

Fast forward to about a month ago. The TV started giving us notice that the lamp needed replaced (it's rear projection). Jared and I ordered the bulb off ebay to save some money. Once Jared recieved the bulb he meticulously installed it and the TV refused to turn on and it just kept flashing a little red light at us. Feeling like a failure Jared called Sony to find out what to do.

Apparently this particular model is so riddled with problems there is an entire division of Sony dedicated to deal with it! It's got several things wrong with it and we were offered 3 options to settle the issue:

1) They would send a repair man out in the next month or two (What!). He would do his best to repair it but it will likely continue to have issues if it's fixable.

2) They will give us a much smaller Sony TV for free.

3) Or we can purchase a new bigger fancier LCD Sony Flat Screen HiDef 1080i blah blah blah at about an 88% discount.

Jared and I spent the afternoon researching the different models offered to decide what the best option would be. There were 3 TV's offered in option 3. One of them was a 52" LCD and our discounted price was still $600. 52" Seemed a bit excessive in our living room (not to mention $600). So the remaining two were the same size (46") and were significantly less money. We decided to go with one of those verses have a repair man "possibly" fix it or taking a much smaller tv (Happy Father's Day/Anniversary honey!).

After mumbling under my breath for a few hours I started to come to grips with the situation. As you can imagine we had NO intention of spending money on a TV yesterday, today, tomorrow, or even next year! The replacement TV is leaps and bounds better (it's an actual flat screen LCD vs rear projection) and is loaded with all the extras. BUT it doesn't fit into my beautiful armoire.

So after much debate we've decided to sell my favorite piece of furniture for several reasons.

1) The tv won't fit in it.

2)We need the money to replace the cost of the discounted TV and to buy a cabinet to sit it on.

3)We have no where safe to store it.

4)There is only one place in the living room it fits and looks nice so we are very limited in rearranging our furniture and a smaller cabinet will make the living room more spacious.

So now we wait. We had to mail in the all the information on the old tv to claim the settlement. Once they recieve it they will ship the new tv and it will be 2-3weeks. In the meantime I hope to sell the cabinet, rearrange the living room, have the carpet cleaned, & purchase a new cabinet before the tv arrives (which should be right before or during the week were gone at camp, nice).

So if you know anyone who's interested in the classiest armoire/wardrobe ever made send them our way.

Friday, May 22, 2009


-This weekend is the Great American BBQ. We go every year since our neighbor participates and invites us to dinner. It's a lot of fun for the kids and the food is fantastic. We're going tonight. I'm a little concerned about my foot but hopefully we won't be doing too much walking.

-Next weekend Jared and I celebrate 13 years of marriage! Monday (June 1) is our anniversary and we're going to go out since my mom offered to watch the kids! Star Trek here we come (ooh and maybe Longhorn since it's payday too!).

-This is definitely a buyers market right now. Jared and I are car shopping and have found several things we like. The great suburban debate has commenced. Every time we start looking for a new family vehicle we weigh the space vs the fuel efficiency. I would love to have one but I don't want to buy it based on that alone. We've been super impressed with the Chrysler and Dodge vans that have Stow and Go. The storage is AWESOME. We're taking our time and praying. As much as I would love a suburban I can feel the Lord leading me towards a van. There are lots of trucks for Jared to choose from. I'm giddy over the idea that he'll have a dependable vehicle that he actually likes.

-We'll probably be selling our little Kia Sedona ourselves. It's a great dependable van, just a little small for a family of 7. If you know anyone that's interested please send them our way. It's an 05' with 65,000 miles.

-I haven't weighed myself in 3 weeks due to my broken foot. I can't balance on a scale obviously. I have been diligent and flawless on my diet but I honestly don't feel like I've lost anything. My belly still protrudes significantly, my hips are spongy, and I'm extremely top heavy. I didn't expect a complete transformation in 10 weeks especially since I can't do any activity but I was hoping to feel better about it all by now. I'll just keep plugging away and hopefully when I can weigh in a couple weeks I'll have a great loss.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sleepy Girl

Anneliese is sleeping through the night! This week she started sleeping longer and longer. Last night was the best with 9 1/2 hours!

She started when I broke my foot. She knew mommy needed her rest. We'll see how she does over the next few nights and soon she'll move to her own room. I may keep her with me a little longer due to my walking boot. Hurrying upstairs when she cries out isn't really an option.

I think Jared will be the most excited since he's been sleeping the spare room. Our bed in there is rock hard and I know he's been missing the wonderfully comfortable king size bed I've been hogging for 10 weeks.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Hopping Along

I seem to be healing well. I'm still in the 800 lb walking boot but other than that I'm pretty mobile. I'm having to make sure I sit with ice for good portions of the day. I don't mind so much since I have a good book I'm reading.

Jared's been a huge help and has been taking care of a lot of the odd jobs around the house. I'm really digging waking up to the dishes being done.

The boot is part of my life at least until June 3rd. As uncomfortable as it is I'm just so very thankful to be done with the crutches!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Seeking Wisdom

Jared and I are in the praying stage of making a huge decision.

1)We have gone through the pre-approval process of refinancing our home and we were approved for a fantastic rate (5%). We have been talking for quite some time about adding onto our upstairs. The kids have tiny closets, no bathroom, and our furnace is in the attic. After talking to a contractor we've decided the best place to build up is over our living room/office area. It would add about 300 square feet that would include a 5th bedroom, a full bathroom, & utility closet. If we wait we could lose the low rate.

2)Jared drives a 94 Honda Accord that is nearing 250,000 miles. It is continuing to deteriorate at what seems to be a quicker pace with each new day. He's desperate for a truck and I'm assuming the bank wouldn't be too keen on refinancing the house and giving us a car loan. The other issue is our van. It's a great dependable vehicle but it's tiny. Our little boys just fit and they're growing by leaps and bounds. Jared and I have talked about purchasing a larger vehicle for the family and then selling our van ourselves. Once the van is sold we would purchase him a vehicle.

We were supposed to start the paperwork for the house last week and the week before but due to a funeral and my broken foot the appointments were postponed. Now we're questioning which route we should go. The addition to the upstairs is an affordable and needed venture for our future. Right now we're doing just fine but we know as the kids grow having a bathroom and another bedroom would be ideal. If we don't do it now we will do it in 1-5 years.

The house is functional as is but our vehicle situation is volatile. It's a hard decision because of the economy. Investing in our house is just that, an investment. Purchasing vehicles is buying a depreciating asset.

We've decided for the time being to just be in prayer. The Lord knows our future and He knows our needs. Our goal is to be in His will in all that we do.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Tickle Tickle

My mom and Jess came over today so I could take Sis to her doctor's appointment.

While mom was here we made pots for the front porch with the kids hand prints on them.

When it came to Anneliese we decided to use her foot. She kept smiling giggling due to the cold paint being painted onto her tiny toes.

Chunky Monkey

My pretty little girl weighs in at a whopping 13lbs even and is 22 1/2 inches long.

She is in the 95% for her weight and the 50% for her height.

We call her short round and didn't realize how accurate we were. She's in perfect health and he's not concerned with her belly button at all. We'll wait until she's two and then reevaluate.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Thanks For The Boot

I was allowed to dawn a walking boot today. I'm still crutch bound until it feels better but my mobility has greatly increased and I am super thankful and in much better spirits.

The boot will adorn my left leg for at least another 3 weeks. I'll then have an x-ray and we'll reevaluate.

I am SO thankful to the Strub family who offered up their walking boot. It's clean and in the perfect size. I took it with me to the Doc to see if it would do. They said it's perfect and one of the nicer ones on the market (la-dee-da). The gentleman who was fitting it to my leg wanted to make sure I thank the family that gave it to me for two reasons.

#1 Most "used" boots are nasty (his words not mine) and this one is exceptionally clean and in like new condition.

#2 Said boot would have cost Jared and I at least $500 since our deductible isn't met on our insurance.

We are so blessed and God knew I would break my foot and has made provisions for us that we are so thankful for. THANK YOU GARY AND TINA!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Melting Down

Today is day 4 post injury. I'm realizing that I can't handle not being mobile. Ever since I was a small child what I could do is what I felt gave me value. I made snickerdoodles for my family, cleaned house for my mom, took care of my younger siblings. As an adult I put things together, clean things up, organize, and serve others. It is who I am.

Take away my mobility, add lots of pain and no sleep and after 4 days I unraveled.

I spent most of the morning crying and claiming, "I'm over this." My friend Natasha just chuckled and said, "Do you think that ends it. All you have to do is say, I'm over it and you're done. I don't think it works that way."

After a weepy call to my mom in law she showed up, sent me to bed with a pain pill and cleaned my house. I woke up refreshed and in much better spirits. I go in tomorrow for a walking boot if all is healing well. I am so thankful to be able to put some pressure on this foot. My right side is super achy and ready for some relief.

It's been rough around the Altic house for a couple weeks and we would greatly appreciate your prayers for our kids and for us individually and as a couple. High stress has become a house mate and it's presence is causing us to grow weary.

Monday, May 11, 2009


Believe it or not I'm making it.  I honestly didn't think I could handle being stationary.  Thankfully I'm finding ways around it.  With the boys help I'm doing laundry, dishes, cooking and even sweeping.  

Tonight I'm having to go to work.  The doc said no working until I'm in a walking boot but alas Weight Watchers is one of the most difficult jobs to "call in" to.  My boss is out of town and no one is available to fill my meeting so 35 ish WW members are going to show up to the church tonight whether my foot is broken or not.  I have a hard time just bailing on my sweet receptionists and my members so I'm heading in to at least do a weigh in.  

Thankfully my sweet Amy is taking Sis and I and bringing us home since I can't drive.  We're going to make a pit stop at Aldi in order to pick up some necessities.  Hopefully crutching around Aldi won't be too exhausting.

We are ridiculously blessed by an Eldership that encourages Jared to spend time with his family.  He would get into more trouble if he worked right now vs staying home to help me.  He's at church right now picking up what he needs in order to work from home.  

He makes an excellent cup of coffee and wraps a mean cast.  Today he's going to plant my tomato plants and bushes I purchased last week before they parish in there little black pots.  Not only is he cute but he's handy!  

Saturday, May 9, 2009


Is it possible to be thankful for a broken foot?

Well maybe I'm not so much thankful for the brokenness but more for the outpouring of love and concern. My in laws rock. Today Anita came over this afternoon and cleaned my house while Richard mowed our yard.

Friday my mom came over and took me to the doctor while Jess T. sat with the kids. Jess and mom tag teamed and took care of us for the day.

Kenny and Mary G. brought dinner over this evening. Kenny is also injured so it's extra special that they would go out of their way when people should be taking meals to them!

My sweet Sonya called today and asked if she could bring lunch to us tomorrow on Mother's Day. This touched me so that I just cried. It's precious to me that she would want to serve our family on a day that she is to be celebrated. Plus Craig is out of town. I couldn't be more thankful.

I didn't think there was anyway I would be able to go to church tomorrow. Thankfully Richard and Anita are coming to get the boys and then Sonya and the girls are coming to get me. Sitting at home without my family on Mother's day brought on the pity party. I'm so thankful that I will be able to go to church to worship and be with my extended family.

The boys and girl are bathed, clothes are laid out for tomorrow, my house is clean and I'm about to take some good drugs to help me sleep. Life is good, God is good.

YAY for OBGYN's and My Michelle

Sometimes it just takes someone outside of the situation to state the obvious. My sweet Michelle called this morning to check on me. She immediately questioned why I hadn't called my obgyn for some pain medication. She said, "How are you going to be able to minister to your family while in terrible pain."

Well if by "minister" you mean bark out orders with a forced please at the end and cry off and on due to the pain and discomfort I'm doing just fine. I called the obgyn on call and he gave me meds that are fine with breastfeeding and will silent the annoying cough I have. Hallelujah!

Because of this terrible cold I was up all night coughing and because of that I couldn't sleep or ignore the ache in my extremity. Today I will have relief! Jared is currently showering and is heading to Target to fill my script and buy me a coffee, he isn't aware of the coffee just yet :)

I'm Clean!

Yesterday I'd had enough and took a shower.

Jess was super smart and had me put a step stool in the tub. I was able to scoot into the tub on my bottom and shower while my leg hung out of the tub with a trash bag wrapped around it. It was so nice to wash my hair and put on some clean clothes.

I've never showered sitting down, but hey it worked!

This morning has been rough. Jared is still down and out since he had no sleep the night before and was drained emotionally with a funeral yesterday. On top of all that we have a terrible head cold. It's 11:12 am and Jared's still in bed. I've been doing my best to hobble about getting the boys breakfast.

I am very fortunate to have the office chair. I'm able to roll around the kitchen and I even loaded the dishwasher. If I could fit it down the hall I'd even do laundry but I don't see that happening.

The boys have been super helpful. I feel terrible constantly asking them for help but I just keep reminding myself it's only temporary.

Friday, May 8, 2009

I'm Awesome

Last night while playing volleyball my shoe grabbed the rubbery floor and decided to stay put while I fell forward. Yes, I tripped over my own foot.

I broke my foot and possibly ruptured a tendon. I'm not able to move my big toe and we'll know for sure on Wednesday if I'll need surgery or not (although it's not likely). I have a new found respect for all those who've ever used crutches. They're awful and possibly worse than having a broken foot all together.

I'm quickly realizing how completely unable I am to do basic tasks. I can't carry my baby, grab the phone, go to the bathroom, or make meals without assistance. I'm not allowed to bathe until Wednesday (when I'll hopefully get a walking boot) so stay away. I may have to break that rule with a trash bag taped around my cast. I can't imagine not bathing after sweating through 3 volleyball games. I smell like the dancing bear.

Jared and I are so appreciative of all the phone calls and help we've received. If it weren't for my mom and Jess T. I wouldn't have made it to my appointment with the surgeon this morning. Richard and Anita stepped right up last night and brought the kids home, put them to bed, and Anita cleaned my kitchen.

I'm not real sure how the next several days are going to go but with a little prayer and some ice I should be fine. I can't take the pain medication because of nursing the baby so I'm not getting much relief from the discomfort. My only option was to wean her and if you read my previous blog you know how I feel about all that. I'm willing to suffer through if I can continue. To quit now doesn't feel like an option.

I just keep thinking, "Seriously, a broken foot and 5 kids. Wow this will be interesting."

Okay I See It Now...

Everyone keeps saying Anneliese looks just like Graham. I kept holding out saying she looks much more like Brennan. I give in. I was looking through pics and the first is Anneliese and the second is Graham at the same age. They're twins :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

He's Hilarious

Freshening Up

I'm thinking about a make up change. I'm the queen of wearing whatever is on clearance at the end cap at Target. I've used just about everything. I really like Almay but only use it when it's on clearance.

When it comes to skin care (daily wash and moisturizer) I splurge a bit and always buy the Oil of Olay products that reduce wrinkles and eliminate blemishes. I love their stuff and have used it for years. My recent favorite is their Clarify and Cleanse daily scrub. For some reason when I turned 30 my face thought we were going through puberty again and this is the only thing I've found that works. If I use it daily I have no blemishes. If I miss even a day my chin looks like it has the measles.

So, while at the woman's retreat my good friend Alisa mentioned her id bare minerals. I'm pretty sure my mom has tried it before and I was intrigued. I've done some research online (only to find out there are millions of impostures) to see what the big deal was about.

Are there any other fans/enemies out there? I'd love some input. They're a little pricey compared to my bargain barrel cosmetics but I like the idea of them doing little to no damage to my skin and evening out my freckled self. Plus it seems that they last longer so the cost is still more but not quite as bad as I originally thought.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

It's Spring

I've been wanting to plant a Japanese Maple for a couple years and it's finally happened! Jared dug me a hole and now look!

I have several other little bushes that need to be planted and a ton of mulch to put down. Hopefully when it's all said and done our wrap around porch will have some curb appeal instead of looking like a barren waste land.

Ohh and my daughter is adorable:

Monday, May 4, 2009

My Joy

Coffee, Fresh Air, and a Hint of Lilacs

The original purpose of my blogging was to emote and work through losing my Dad. This July 22 marks 3 years since his tragic passing. Today is a hard day.

The weather is beautiful and the windows are open. While sitting at my computer I smell fresh spring air and our little lilac bush out front. I decided to brew a pot of coffee and the combination of smells immediately reminded me of the summer mornings spent with my Dad.

Living in Colorado in the dry air they had swamp coolers verses air conditioners. With a swamp cooler we could sleep with the windows open. Early before work each day Dad would brew some coffee and sit for a bit before he headed out. The combination of fresh morning air and freshly brewed coffee is the aroma that links my heart to my memories of my Daddy.

Jared and I have plans to go to Colorado this summer to attend a family reunion on his side. I've been really excited at the prospect of going. I was chatting about our plans to a friend last night when it all started to sink in.

All the trips to Colorado in my life have been about my Dad. I haven't driven that route without it being about him. All through my youth we'd head out so Jason and I could spend short precious moments with him and then after his accident our journey out was to say goodbye.

My heart is heavy. I miss you Dad.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


This morning I headed up to Platte City for some bargain shopping. The boys, mom, and I hit 20 garage sales at least. This was my first of the season.

The very first sale was the best! I purchased a brand new pair of Nike Free for $2! They are navy and pink and perfect. Plus I picked up several clothing items for me to wear while I'm losing. I love knit pants!

The boys each had $2 to budget and they did exceptional. The had so much fun digging through all the stuff to find treasures.

At one garage sale I found an entire Pottery Barn Jungle Animal crib set with extras for $25. Since I know how pricey it is I purchased it and plan on putting it on Ebay. I did some research and this particular print is discontinued and sets on ebay with less stuff are selling for at least $175. I'm going to wash it this afternoon and post it. I'll let you know how it goes!

I found an infant sling. It's black and white toile. I've always wanted to try one but didn't want to spend the money incase I didn't like it. I slipped Sis in and she snuggled up and crashed out. I love this thing! She can nurse, sleep or just hang out. It will definitely come in handy while I'm at home desperate to get some things done. It's actually pretty comfortable.

Graham LOVES shoes and he got a new pair of baby blue Crocs and some little slip-on skater shoes that were brand new. They are too cute.

I am all about Pampered Chef stoneware. While at one sale I spotted several pieces. I bought the mini loaf pan (it makes 4 loaves), and a square baker. I had the baker at one point but I dropped it on the floor and it is no longer. If you know much about P.C. stoneware you know it's pricey. You can imagine my glee when I picked them up for $2 each.

The best part of the day was even though I didn't spend that much money after selling the Pottery Barn bedding I'll get it all back and then some. YAY!

Friday, May 1, 2009

It Just Is...

This is Anneliese's favorite napping place:

Jared has said from the beginning that if we had a girl it wouldn't be any different than the boys. He means that we will discipline her and care for her with the same amount of love and consistency as we have the boys. Neither of us want a diva on our hands. Our goal is to raise a kind generous little girl who puts others before herself.

she is different. None of the boys allowed Jared to hold them without screaming yet she loves to be held by her daddy. In fact, she prefers it at times. When I can't seem to appease her I hand her off to Daddy and he rests her like in the picture and she settles in hugging his arm and drifts off to sleep.

It's apparent to both of us that a little girl is different in every way. We are blessed. We love all of our children so much and the addition of our little Daddy's girl has given us more reason to be in awe of their uniqueness.