Monday, June 30, 2008

Monday, Monday

The first of the summer radishes were picked today.


The newest craze in our house?

Garage band on the Mac.  It is pretty cool, though I wish I had the same warm fuzzy feelings about this machine as my boys do.  I have cried uncle;  my new computer and I will be sitting at the genius bar in the apple store on Wednesday, where some 18 year old boy-wonder will teach me how to find my mail and my pictures.  

And help me IM Holly.

I have very, very simple needs.

This morning Brian went to our neighborhood day camp with a few of his friends...they played a little tennis and then spent the rest of the time at the lagoon swimming and having water wars.  I thought he'd be tired, but the neighborhood was alive with excitement, so he came in to scarf down dinner (salmon...his favorite) and then back out again until dark.

The perfect summer day.

Matthew had practice from 12 - 9pm and is looking happier and happier each and every day.  Pretty cool.  

Alex is still working his way through the try-out process and it has become pretty stressful for him.  Tomorrow, he'll play in a game with the team and see how he (and a few others who are all vying for the same spot) fits.  We keep telling him that God has a plan...

This afternoon was spent with the electrician trying to figure out exactly where the new light switches should go.  Oh would be much easier if we just used candles.  


Sunday, June 29, 2008


One Italian girl.

Tons of German men.

And a wee little game of soccer.


My boys (minus Matthew, who had a show in Riverside today...and got very, very lost on the way, but we did add Uncle Greg) talked me into going to the Phoenix Club after church to watch the EuroCup finals.
The big boys on the 1st of a few rounds of very German beer.
More bread, anyone?
And HELLOOOO...butter, anyone?
Alex looking OLD.
The game was fun, especially in a room full of Germans, but Brian and I played some Uno.

Out back,  we found a beer hall...
...where M thinks his sons wedding receptions will be at.

The horsey smell comes free.

The official measurement is in...Alex is taller.
I must say, it was a very, very fun place to people watch and if you like sausage it was THE place to be.  There was some serious sausage happening in that between the saurkraut and spaetzle.  



Saturday, June 28, 2008


It's here...the official opening of drum corps season.

And we were at Matthew's 1st judged show, red vines in hand, cheering him on.

Alex and Brian stayed home...they'll be drum corps'ed out on the 4th of July, so M and I had a date.


Which was good, because we seem to have a house full of boys at all times.


Met some fun people, saw some great shows, and bought an amazing berry pie on the way home.


Thursday, June 26, 2008


Always, always a change of plans.

Last night, we started accumulating more and more children, 'Mom, can Jenn stay for dinner?', 'Mom!  Keke is going to stay for dinner, ok?' and 'Mom, please, please, please can Jack stay?' in a moment of weakness, M decided on Nick's.

The only downfall was that it was Hector's night off, but it's a tiny place and they all know us anyway, so it was a blast.  The fun part was watching other people try and figure out which kids belonged to us.

So, pizza's were at one end of the table and eggplant parm was on my end, which made everyone very, very happy.

And full.

Home to watch a show we had taped called Wipeout, which I am seriously thinking is one of the funniest shows ever.  EVER. If you know Alex at all, then watch the show with him in mind.

And say a prayer for us.

Alex is already off to practice and will be there pretty much all day.  Matthew has drum corps at noon until 9pm in a town far, far away and M has to go in to work for the day.  He's hiring a new accompanist and the 1st of the interviews are this afternoon.  Brian and I are going to do Meals on Wheels and then have lunch with Josephine.  

I am pretty sure we could eat an entire meals worth of stuff off the floors, so that is my big plan for today and yes, we will be eating supper at home tonight...friends or no friends.  No matter what.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008


This morning was a chocolate chip pancake morning.

Just because.

OK, maybe because I was a somewhat raving lunatic because I woke up to a dirty kitchen AGAIN after going to bed with a clean kitchen but two teenage boys decided to make a late night grilled cheese, quesadilla, corn dog feast and leave all their dirty dishes everywhere.

I am pretty sure it won't happen again, especially since I promised to forevermore run the washing machine on HOT while they are in the shower every morning for the rest of their lives.


I instantly felt better, but decided to win back my boys with pancakes.

It worked.

M and Matthew hopped in the car and drove a few towns over to a German club to watch Germany play soccer.  I've never been, but M describes it as beer, sausages, and many, many old german men laughing and talking.

Brian went and lost all his hair this morning...his choice.  After, we picked his friend up and went to Ruby's for lunch and browsed Barnes and Noble for an hour.  Heaven.  I even bought a book, which I never do, but after reading the 1st chapter there I couldn't put it down.
The boys helped me water my garden and each other.  Priceless.
So, we're now home for the afternoon.  Supper tonight is chicken and homemade pesto, which we'll hopefully eat outside on the patio.  I may take the boys up the street to the pool, but for now they are happily building a fort with every blanket we own.

Summer is officially here.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

When your house looks like this...

...and this,

you just need to escape.  


Matthew had practice and Alex had basketball camp, so Brian got to be the only child for the day.  

We browsed Brookstone, and he really, really wants one of these chairs.
Lunch at Cheesecake Factory...where he ordered the salmon.

Then he met the Hulk.  We actually saw Get Smart, which made my husband laugh a LOT...which was MUCH needed.

Came back home and discovered the hole that was under the old air conditioner.

I can't wait to play with cement!  It's gonna be fun!
Wrote a really, really, really BIG check and went out for a really, really BIG beer.  I don't even like beer, but I was being supportive.

OK...he cracks me up.   Gotta love the glasses that he never takes off.

Our house now has a thermostat that looks like it was designed by NASA.  M is thrilled...I am hoping to figure out how to turn the heat on before my 74th birthday.


Sunday, June 22, 2008


Today brought 3 more basketball games, played in incredibly hot, sweaty and kinda smelly gyms.

My #5 played amazingly well...I guess the lack of hair has been a benefit.


After, we celebrated with an end of season...and end of a team, BBQ and swim party.  Some of these boys have played together since 3rd grade.  Others, like us, came later.  

High school ball starts on Monday and our team of 9 will soon represent 5 different high schools.

The boys, having played 6 games in 2 days, did what they love to do.  Played basketball.  And had a water fight.  And ate.  And ate.  And ate.

The parents, having spent all weekend driving and cheering and sweltering, did what they needed to do.


A trend has been started...Matthew came home last night hairless.  Only one remains, and he is hiding from the clippers.


Saturday, June 21, 2008

Twenty Two

Last night, after dropping Brian off at a friends sleepover birthday party, M and I drove 5 teenage boys to the spectrum (an outdoor mall)  so that they could 'hang out'.  Being the annoying kind of parents that we are, we hung out too...though we made them promise to ignore us if they saw us.


What they don't know is that we deposited ourselves in PF Changs and sipped a martini.  Or two.  

The boys had fun strutting their stuff and by the time the clientele was changing from families with strollers to teens looking for excitement, we gathered them up and were heading for home.

Dropped all the friends off at their houses and came home just as Matthew drove up.  The boys all watched Casino Royale...I made strawberry-rhubarb crisp.  



3 basketball games.

I'm tellin' ya...this kid can JUMP.
Also today?

Our anniversary.

22 years ago, we said 'I do' and 22 years later we're still having a really fun life.


We'll be together today, sitting in 3 different gyms watching Alex play and then sitting in a stadium watching Matthew perform.  With us, Brian will be chatting away non-stop while we share a gourmet meal at In n Out.

We just might have to stop for a shake on the way home, too.

  Just because.

I can't think of a better way to spend an anniversary...


Friday, June 20, 2008

One More

So, if you cut 6 inches of hair off...does that mean you grow another inch overnight and hit the 6 foot mark?

It does in our house.

Strange.  Very, very strange.

Also, the ability to dunk (a basketball players dream) is right around the corner.  Cuz he can see the rim now.


Boys....trouble x 5.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

The New Do

Beautiful blonde locks...

...on the floor.
Looking sooo much older!

This was all his decision (choose your battles) and he was more than ready.  He tried it out on the court last night and said his shot is 'way' better with no hair in his face...and that he should have done it much sooner.

Who would've thought?


Back to Blogging

It's HOT here.


 The tomatoes are happy.


The temps are in the mid 90's and after Meals on Wheels and lunch with Josephine, I sweltered in the heat while I watered.  Everything has perked up and is growing like crazy...finally!

Matthew is at an all day practice today in the middle of nowhere in the middle of a football field, sweating like crazy in the 105 degree heat.  Yesterday was the 2nd of 5 days off for him this whole summer...he spent the day running errands and then he and Jenn came for supper.  His request?  Spaghetti and that was what we had, especially after he pointed out that he will only be home for 11 more meals before he goes off to college.


Alex has been hanging with friends most of the's his 1st official day of summer and even the high heat won't keep them off the basketball court.  Brian's last day of school was today and he is currently running and climbing and laughing outside in the hot sun.  

I love that.


Last night, we ate outside and then sat for hours in the backyard.  Neighbors popped in and out...there is just something about dancing to Frank Sinatra with twinkly lights all around and I am so thankful that summer vacation has finally, finally arrived.

It sure took awhile.

This morning we met with the contractor one more time to go over the plans for a remodel.  Don't even ask what we've decided because we're still thinking.  And thinking.  And thinking.  Sometimes I think we are looking into doing this more for other people than for us and that is something we need to figure out.  Plus, I've learned that everyone has an opinion on what they would do, so it's best to not share too much of what we want to do.  Does that make sense?

In the meantime, all my boys woke up in their own beds this morning and ate breakfast in our little kitchen before heading out on their way.  Tonight they'll all gather back in that same little kitchen for a late night snack and head off to sleep in their own little beds.

Doesn't take much to make me happy.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Graduation #2

This morning at 10:00am, Alex graduated from 8th grade.

And is now, officially, a high school freshman.


Grandma and Grandpa came and we all cheered him on...I am pretty sure a few teachers stood and cheered too.  Probably more than a few.  It's been a ride...lots of laughter, tears, hair pulling, and praying.  Lots.  And lots.  We're proud of you, Alex!

Alex and his posse.  These are his best friends, and have been since kindergarten...they play basketball together and are just a funny, funny group of boys.  I love 'em all like my own...probably because they're around so much!
On to another new chapter.  Alex starts high school basketball on Monday, so he's enjoying a few days off...and then he has practice everyday for the month of July.

He's thrilled...and I mean that for real, not the sarcastic kind of thrilled.  He cannot believe what a great summer he is going to each and everyday.  Life is good!


Graduation #1

It's official...we are now the parents of a high school graduate.


It was a fun, yet hot, day but it was an amazingly well organized event.  I actually have a cute little video, but my new computer (which I am not so sure I like is a definite lukewarm relationship going on over here) won't let me post it.  I'll chat with my free technical support (gotta love free technical support, Uncle Greg!) and get it worked out soon.  I hope.


Anyway, after graduation, we headed out to Maggiano's with the whole family to celebrate both Matthew's and Alex's (upcoming) graduations.
My boys...both starting new schools in the fall.
The babe of the family with his very, very grown-up palate.  How many 9 yr-olds love mussels?
The highlight of the night?  The present!  He was pretty excited!
Matthew left from dinner and headed out to grad night, which is a lock-in at the school that runs from 9pm - 5am.  The theme this year was Casino Royale and from what I've heard, was a really fun night.  He came home and crashed for a few hours and then went to drum corps from 2 - 9pm.  I'm not quite sure how he is holding up except to say that he is young!

Anyway Matthew...we're proud of you!  Keep dreaming big!


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Almost There

Concerts, all 8 of them...done.
Choir banquet...done.
Graduation rehearsal...done.
Band banquet...done.

It's hard to believe it's almost over.  One last big event is left...graduation!

Last night was the big banquet. we like totally (how's that for some 80's, totally dude!) got it right this year.

Well, almost.


The band banquet is known to be very, very, very, very, very, very, very long.  Like totally waaaaay long.  And rather expensive, too.  Freshman year, we were really good parents and went.

And vowed not to go back again until we had to, which was senior year for the senior awards and the senior roast.

But, we kinda cheated.  We met our friends D and J for dinner and margaritas at a nearby restaurant rather than sitting throughout the painful 1st half of the banquet.  Double the fun for half the money.

Our kids had strict instructions to text us when the awards started.  We were ready and waiting and when the phones started buzzing, we headed on over.  The almost right part?  Both our kids got awards while we were in the car, so we ended up missing them.  Ah well, we were there in time for the roast, which was kinda sorta funny but made us thankful we had not paid to be there.


Matthew was awarded best jazz musician.  Pretty cool, beans!

Friday, June 13, 2008


Goodbye, old friend...

...and hello, new friend.
She and I need to get used to each other, but I am sure it will end up being a long, happy relationship.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Concert #7 in the last few weeks...this time Brian on his violin. So very, very adorable.

After, we have a tradition of stopping for ice cream. This concert was early, so Brian got to choose supper, too...Carl's Jr drive-thru it was. One chocolate shake, please! I called the older boys and took their orders. Big mistake. Even bigger bag!


Tonight, we'll actually all be home. Alex has a sports physical at 5pm but that is it. Matthew pulled an almost all nighter last night...finals started today and finish tomorrow. I guess you need to start studying at some point, right? Anyway, he's exhausted but there is more cramming to be done.

Yesterday's hooky playing was garden is looking so much better, the laundry is caught up, the house is somewhat put together and I actually cooked a pretty good meal of sausage, peppers and onions. With pasta marinara on the side. Best of all...I feel somewhat sane again.

Not that I am ever totally sane.

I was telling a friend yesterday about how stressed I was feeling and she reminded me of that awesome quote from Martin Luther:

'Pray, and let God worry.'

It helped.


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