Wednesday, November 30, 2011

You Hold the Rights I'll Never Own

Yesterday, I told you I couldn't blog about what I wanted to.  Finally, I can.  So let me tell you my story:
Thursday, November 17, 2011 was our cub scout pack's Pinewood Derby.  It was so fun for the boys.  The Wolves were in charge of the treats, and of course, my partner in crime got sick, so I had to take care of it all by myself.  No worries, though.  I came up with something amazing that only took me four hours to make total (including a lunch break and putting little girls in time out because I was working that day, too).
I video taped the boys cars going down the tracks that evening.  I had twelve minutes of footage that I cut down to four.  Because let's face it.  All the stuff in between the cars going down the track is super boring to watch if you aren't there.  Then I took the sound out of the video and put it to music.  After that painstaking process (which I actually enjoy - I just had to be in the mood to do it), I uploaded it onto YouTube.  Then I get an email telling me that using a certain song has put me in copyright violation, and therefore, they removed all the audio out of my video.  If you have ever heard of the Fair Use Act, then you will know that I was not in copyright violation.  I used thirty seconds of each song.  Not the entire song, therefore, not violation.  I could dispute this, but that would have been asking them to come and sue me, so I said, "Well, that's fine.  I'll just use another song."  I took out the song that showed up on the video as being for sale to purchase, and put in another.  Apparently, there was another song that had the same issue.  So, I took out that song, and put in another.  I decided to take out another song by the same artist that I had used as well, just to be safe.  Geesh.  So finally, it is uploaded and you can watch it.  But I'm still risking copyright violation with one song.  You'll know because if you watch it on YouTube, and not my blog, you will be able to click on a link to purchase said song.  But they didn't take out the audio this time, so I am not changing it again.  Unless they threaten to sue me.  Which would just be rude.  Nobody is going to watch this except maybe my family and maybe some friends.
But enjoy the video.  Especially, you Michele.  You understand the importance of capturing the moments in your children's lives that matter the most to them.

At one point in this video (if you are paying attention), Zach and Riley get to race their cars against each other.  I can't remember (of the two) who won.

 Riley's car.  We had the boys weigh their cars and if it was too light, we brought pennies for them to hot glue onto the car to make it heavier.

 I asked Kurtis to take some pictures while I was filming.  Not really sure what Zach is doing, but he's having fun. :)

 The boys loved gathering around the track to watch.

 Zach's car won "Most Decals".  He used all the numbers and the stickers surrounding the numbers on his car.  It's in the video.  We didn't get a shot of just his car, yet.

 Kurtis thinks I'm pretty, so he took a picture of me setting out the treats.  I just think it's funny that you can't tell that's what I am doing. :)  And this is also why I didn't video the award ceremony for their cars.  Too busy!

I told you these treats were amazing.  I made fifty of them.  Three batches of rice crispy treats, one tube of blue frosting, and the giant bag M&M's.  I made cookies with the left-over M&Ms later.  Easy, but time consuming.  So glad I started in the morning instead of waiting until after lunch. And they were a HIT!  So go on and comment on how darling they are.  I love to hear it! :D

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Never Would I Trade My Blood For Oil

I was going to blog about my life in the order of the events that happened, but alas.  I am having issues that I will explain in a later post.  Since I cannot blog about what I was going to blog about, I will blog about this:  THANKSGIVING!
So Thanksgiving was really interesting this year.  It's Kurtis' side of the family's turn to have us over for Thanksgiving this year.  That's right.  We invite ourselves over.  Family has to put up with us, and I swear for the last two years in a row, I've made my side of the family put up with us, so it was long over due. ;) My sister-in-law asked her sister-in-law what she wanted to do for Thanksgiving this year.  Her response was that she wanted to go to Chuck-A-Rama.  My first thoughts were, "Really?"  And Kurtis said, "That's not very traditional."  Neither one of us really wanted to do it.  Thanksgiving is supposed to be done at home where you can stuff yourself silly and then fall asleep on the couch.  Not in some buffet place that doesn't have chocolate creme pie!  They really didn't.  But we wanted to spend time with his family, so we went along with it.  Everybody I told kept telling us, "Well, then you don't have to cook, and there's no clean up!"  Way to put a positive spin on things people.  My friends were not supposed to do that!  They were supposed to sympathize with me and say, "What is going on in their brains!?"  I really don't care about cleaning up.  That's what my kids are for!  Have I not said this many times before?  My children are not just cute dolls that I get to dress up and pose for you.  If I wanted that, I would go buy a mannequin.  At least they wouldn't talk back and they don't have to go to school, and they don't make messes.  Hmmm.  Lightbulb!  Too late now, though.  Now I want to find that movie and watch it.  Geesh.  I'm distracted today.
So anyway, Kristie told me that we needed to get there early so we could stand in line and be some of the first people in the doors when they opened at 11, or we would be waiting all day.  We were supposed to meet at 10:30 in the morning, but we were late.  So was Kristie's family (but she won).  So was Natalie and her family (but we won).  Natalie said, "I didn't think you were serious that there would be a line."  Ha ha ha!
We ended up having a really nice time.  I guess when you are with the people you love, it doesn't really matter where you are.  I got to hold Natalie's new baby boy Gabe.  He's such a sweetheart.  After we were done with our lunch, we drove to my Grandma's house.  They started their meal at 1:30, and we arrived just as everyone was sitting down to eat.  We sat down and chatted, but we didn't eat much.  I tried Lili's jello.  It was delicious.  We played bingo.  Kaleb won a snow globe ornament that changes color.  He's really in love with it and when I told him he could put it on our Christmas tree, he said, "We'll see.  Maybe I will want to."

At least it wasn't super cold.  It wasn't warm either, but as long as the wind wasn't blowing, we were good.  Unless you ask Zach.  He doesn't look very excited.

But Riley was.  As soon as we met up with his cousins, he was so happy.

Then I let him take the camera for a bit.  Not my best angle, but at least there is proof that I was there! :D

Extreme close-up of Kayden taken by Riley.

We finally made it inside!

Kaleb was pretty excited about his slushy.  We don't normally have those at Thanksgiving dinner.

Just ignore those people in the background.  I don't know them, but those two are enjoying their dinner.  Zach ate too much.  He's been doing that lately, and then telling me he feels like he is going to puke.  Then five or ten minutes later, he says, "I burped, and now I feel better."  Geesh.

Marty, Kristie, and Ryan.  Some of the best people I know. :)

Pretty Taylor.

The gorgeous Ava.  Can you believe she is only three?  No.  I can't either.


I got to hold and feed little Gabe until Grandma Bonnie used her Grandma card.  She confiscated him while I was burping the little tyke.  He's such a sweetheart!

Then, we went outside and played in the leaves in the parking lot.

They tried to bury Natalie!  She's such a good sport.

Kaleb's bingo prize.  He thinks it's pretty neat.  I do, too. :)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

To Honor Your Sacrifice

I'm so far behind in my blogging!  But it's okay.  That just means I have plenty to say for a little while.  On Friday, November 11, 2011, it was Veteran's Day.  A very important day for us.  It's a day to celebrate those who risk their lives every day protecting our nation.  Every year, the fifth graders put on a program for the parents, and any of the veterans in their family.  This year, my oldest child is in fifth grade, so I threw everyone in the car, and we all went to watch Zach shine.  The program was an hour long.  YouTube won't let me put a video on their sight that lasts longer than fifteen minutes, so I did my best to condense what I filmed for you.  I had to cut out a lot!  It was really hard!  I mean, how do you condense American History down to fifteen minutes!? 
Also, I forgot my tripod that night, so I stood in the back, holding that freaking camera for an hour.  Unfortunately, as a result, twenty minutes into filming, my hand started to shake uncontrollably at times.  I tried to steady the camera with my other hand at times, but it didn't work.  I apologize for the shotty camera work.
For the program this year, they asked each child to write a line about one of their ancestors who participated in a big event such as coming overseas to America as a pilgrim, or the pioneers or World War II, or things like that.  They had a whole list.  I had Zach call my mom because my grandfather was in the Navy during World War II.  I didn't really understand what it was for, but during this program some of the children got up and spoke in the first person about their ancestor.  I didn't have enough time to put all of them on this video, but when you see a child talking in first person about someone who participated in a piece of history, that is their ancestor.  I just cut them off before they could say their own name.  The last two are about veterans who are still living, so I left the veteran's name off as well.  I don't know if it will really protect them or not, but I figure most parents would appreciate that.  I didn't ask them before I posted this after all.
Like I said.  This is only fifteen minutes, so if you would like to see the entire hour-long program, let me know and I will burn you a DVD.  Unless you are a stranger and I have no idea who you are.  Then you are just out of luck.  Enjoy!

What a bunch of cuties!  
Oh, and one more thing I almost forgot.  Zach told me his favorite part of the program was when they sang the songs for the branches of service in our armed forces.  The girl asks the veterans to stand when they hear their song, and so I was trying to get them on camera to honor them as well, but most of the time, they sat down too quickly.  That is the one part that did not get cut to shreds.

Hooray for our veterans!  Zachary  got to sing the Navy's song, and it got me all misty-eyed!  We also have a veteran who was in the Air Force who is no longer with us as well.  Kurtis' dad.  We will miss them, and look forward to seeing them again.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Paradox: The Portrait of Abigail Sutherland (The Three Time-Travelers)

Okay, so I totally missed this webisode.  For some reason, my "subscription" failed to email me and let me know this was up.  So, you get two Paradox fixes tonight!  Woo-hoo!  The first is a Dez's Web Blog.  If I am not mistaken, it is the final one for this season.

Then, this episode went up last night (or really early this morning, depending on your point of view).  This episode is the first of the season finale.  Weird.  I don't really want it to be over.  Maybe there will be more.  I think Spencer is writing more...

I hope you liked it!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Let's Show Them Our Hearts

Kaleb has started playing basketball.  His first game was on Saturday.  I video taped it, made a movie, and posted it to YouTube.  It's fourteen minutes and twenty seconds long, so if you don't want to watch all of it, just skip to 5:05 to find out what happens when Kaleb gets his hands on the ball.  It is hilarious!  Then skip to 9:18 and see what he does when he gets the ball again.  So cute!
Before you watch, you should know some things about the rules for the first grade boys.  First:  They don't penalize the boys for traveling, yet.  Second:  They are not allowed to try to take the ball away from the other team (when they are on their side of the court) until the person with the ball reaches half-court.  Also, they are teaching the boys to play, so they put wrist bands on each boy.  Each one is a different color, but one of the boys on the other team is also wearing that same color.  That is their guy.  The one they have to guard.  I love it.  I think Kaleb has lucked out this year.  His coach is a really tall, really kind person who wants the boys to have fun and learn to love the game.  That's all I want for Kaleb.  To have fun, and to gain a little confidence in himself.

If you watched the whole video, you rock.  He's so much fun to watch because he's just so happy to be there.  He runs and skips down the court and doesn't care if he doesn't get the ball.  He cheers when the other team makes a basket, and the other team made a lot of baskets.  His team only made one.  Maybe two (I only got one on video).  It was a great day!  Even if it did snow and ruin our chance to get family pictures. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I Will Hang On the Hook of Your Splendor

On Thursday, I went to my cousin's wedding reception.  I made some broccoli cheese soup for it.  It was delicious.  I took a few pictures, but most of them turned out horribly.  Perhaps if I had used my flash.  But I like to be stealthy with my picture taking.  I'm like a picture ninja.  The flash is a little bit noticeable.  But it was a beautiful reception and very elegant.  So here you go my dear sister who couldn't be there, but I am sure she would have if she didn't live in another state.

 Doesn't he look handsome?

 He's pretty excited.  I actually let them out of the house.  Except Riley, who when I told them we were going to my cousin's wedding reception promptly declared:  "I hate weddings!"

 But I let him take some pictures, so he had a good time.

 Riley took this one, too.

Kaleb immediately made some new friends.

 The mothers of the bride and groom.

 Taylor (the groom), Michael and Lili

 Thick as thieves!
 Riley, asking when they are going to cut the cake.

 More serious plotting.

 Time to cut the cake!

 It was yummy cake.

Fabulous shoes!
It was a fun evening, and because the ladies in the kitchen kept pouring every body's broccoli cheese soup into my crock pot, I had to take home way too much of it.  And some how we ended up with some that someone thought would be a good idea to put bacon in.  The recipe did not ask you to put bacon in it.  Bacon is never a good idea.  Bacon on the side would have been a good idea, but to just assume that everybody likes bacon is rude.
I hate bacon!

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Leaves Are Falling Down

Wednesday was my monthly Stampin' Up! workshop.  I call it Stamp Club.  We always have a really fun time making stuff using Stampin Up! products.  I'm a demonstrator now.  I know I've told you that before, but just in case you forgot.  I'm telling you again.  The first project we made was an idea that came from my monthly magazine that I get from Stampin Up!.  It's called Stampin' Success.  It has all the achievements everybody has done in it and a few ideas for workshops.  I usually only look at the workshop ideas.  One time, when I got a promotion, I looked for my name and when I found it, I said, "Oh!  Look!  It's me!!"  I gave myself about two seconds to celebrate by myself, and then I turned the page and looked for more pictures of projects.

This is a picture of the picture in the magazine, and where I got my idea.

And this is my version of the one in the magazine.  I think it turned out really well!What a cute idea for decorating your table settings during Thanksgiving!

 And we always do a card.  This is my design.  I feel that since becoming a demonstrator, I have become more creative in my card making.  You can check out the catalogs for Stampin' Up! online here.  As always, when you order something online, be sure to choose me as your demonstrator! :D  Someday, I will have my own website you can order from, but not yet!  I would love to have you join us for Stamp Club in December as well!  It will be December 7th at my house at 7:00 p.m.  Email me if you think you can make it, or leave a comment with your email, and I will email you.  We'll be doing Christmas stuff!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Paradox: One Way Trip (Time is Like Manicotti)

I'm fairly certain this is the most I have ever heard Joel talk.  :D

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Watch Out Cupid Stuck Me With a Sickness

Okay, so it wasn't Cupid.  More like Rhino-virus or Corona-virus.  They are so mean!  They even got Kurtis, too!  It's really not fun.  It's just a cold and a sore throat.  I'll get better.  Hopefully sooner than later.  But I have to show you what Kaleb gave me today. 

Isn't he the sweetest?

This was on the back of his note.

Then he gave me these other two pictures.  The middle one is of us sword fighting.

We won the fight and are showing our muscles.