No Harm Done

Thursday, December 20, 2007

12 Days of Christmas

I posted this video on the blog last Christmas, but it's one of our favorites and it deserves to be posted again.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

My Christmas Gift Sucks.

We enjoy having people over to visit. Are you going to be in the area? Stop on by! (Call first!) Are you bored on a Friday night and are looking for a little board game action? C’mon over (Call first!) We’re probably here.

Before people come to the house I do lots of things: I clean up the counters. I clean the bathroom. I make sure the toys are picked up.

But the one thing I do not do: vacuum.

I happen to like clean floors. Braden is allergic to dust, so I vacuum fairly frequently in an effort to keep those mites at bay. But I never vacuum before company comes over.

Why? Well... it’s because of my vacuum. Way back in 2002 we bought our vacuum and it has served us well up until this year. But this summer it began acting funny.

Anytime the motor heated up, the vacuum would emit a powerful smell. A smell reminiscent of the solution used in salons to give women permanent waves. Imagine a salon giving four or five women perms simultaneously. In August. That is what my house smells like when I’m vacuuming.

I can avoid the odor if I only vacuum small areas of flooring at a time, say just a hallway or just an area rug. But if I were to do that, it’d take me all week to get the house done.

I can tolerate the smell, but the boys think it smells like poop, and make no effort to hide their disgust.

Stinky vacuum + 3 boys= A whole lotta’ bathroom humor.

So, if I know we’re having company I make a point of vacuuming the day before they come.

Which brings me to today. After school I spent the day doing laundry and cleaning the house before the rush of Christmas arrives. When M. came home he saw how hard I was working and….

Okay, that’s not exactly true.
M. didn’t see me working because at the moment he walked in the door I was sitting at the table reading a magazine and eating a chimichanga. But he could tell I had been working hard because the house smelled like I’d spent the day giving neighbor ladies Toni home perms. (Or, it smelled like poop, depending upon which family member you asked.)

M. told me he wanted to give me his Christmas present early, because he wanted to see me use it before Christmas. Moments later he rolled out this beauty!

Within 15 minutes I had it assembled and was zooming around the house with it. I love, love, love this vacuum! I vacuumed nearly all the main floor of the house tonight and had a blast!

Best of all – no smell!

I might vacuum the house again tomorrow just because I can!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

What’s this? A Christmas present? How fun!

Hmm… there’s no gift tag on it.
Let’s peek inside, shall we?

Oh, my! It’s a mummified chicken!

Remember the chicken that the boys and I mummified in October? Well, it’s been on our counter, drying in salt-filled Ziploc bags since then. On Friday we removed the chicken from the salt for the last time, and wrapped him in cloth strips. The strips were coated in a glue-and-water mixture, not unlike papier-mache.

After drying on our counter (and with a little assistance from my hair dryer), our chicken mummy was finished!

“But wait,” you say, “You haven’t explained why your mummy is in a gift box.”

True. Well, last night,
M. and I attended a Christmas party for a friend of his from work. The invitation told us to bring gifts for a white elephant gift exchange. M., being the relatively sane one, took a wrapped lame CD/DVD combo. (A Kenny G. Christmas CD and a “Look Who’s Talking Too” DVD)

Me? I wrapped up the chicken mummy. I sprayed it with Febreeze to mask any smell, and it worked surprisingly well. Note to self: Write to the Febreeze company– “Thank you for helping me keep my chicken mummy gift a surprise. The Febreeze left no telltale odor to give it away!”

I also included this note:

“Congratulations! You are now the proud owner of a mummified chicken. Your white elephant gift will last for years to come.”

I can tell you’re all wishing you’d invited me to your Christmas parties. Fear not, dear readers, there are still several more days until Christmas and my evenings are (mostly) free. Make your reservations now.

I was giddy with excitement over this gift, but was a bit nervous too. This was a party where I knew nobody. I’d met the hosts once before, and coincidentally there was a second couple there that I’d met previously. The other 25 people were strangers. As people started opening gifts, I was getting worried. Nearly every gift was a serious gift: lotions, ornaments, etc. Even the used items were nice-ish.

Fortunately, the gentleman who opened the mummy had a great sense of humor, and couldn’t believe what he’d received. When he read the card aloud and held up the mummy, the party roared with laughter. Afterwards, people kept coming up to check out the mummy. What a lucky guy!

The chicken mummy is probably at the bottom of his trash can this morning (his wife was, shall we say, less than thrilled), but for a few shining moments this chicken was the belle of the ball.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

This Is Dedication, Folks...

Well, we made it through the first 36 hours of the ice storm and its aftermath without incident. We lost power this afternoon, though, and they're saying it could be a couple of days before we have it back. I'm blogging from the library right now.

Marc's been working from home, as the entire town where he works has no electricity. They're saying it'll be back tomorrow, but.... well, they said that last night too.

We're fine, though a little chilly. I know the line crews are working many, many hours trying to restore power.

If you're trying to get a hold of us, in the meantime, I'd do it by phone.

Stay warm!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Next week is our church's Nativity program. The children have been practicing songs for several weeks.

Braden will be some sort of conglomeration of the Old Testament prophets Isaiah, Malachi, and Micah. He's been memorizing his lines for several weeks and is ready to go. He loves speaking in public, and is excited about the fake beard he gets to wear.

Up until today, the children have been working on songs, not staging. I'm not sure that anyone other than the main characters (Mary, Joseph, etc.) has practiced moving around. So those not in main roles had no idea what they would be until they were handed their costumes.

Brogan and Colson found out today that they will be animals in the stable. Brogan is to be a sheep, and Colson is a cow. Both boys were excited.

I'm not sure what exactly Colson thinks he'll be doing onstage. I overheard the following conversation as they were going to sleep tonight.

Brogan: "I can't believe I get to be a sheep! Baaaa!"

Colson: "I can't believe I get to make milk!"

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


I'm sorry I haven't posted in so long. I've been a little....ummmm..... stressed.

Maybe overwhelmed is a better word choice.

I'm sinking under the crushing weight of my "To Do" list.

Drowning in minutiae.

I'll post again in a couple of days. But in the meantime....

Please send coffee!