Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Playgroup and Petting Zoo

For playgroup, we joined some friends at the petting zoo today and boy we were in for a good time. The chickens were the highlight of our visit. The kids loved feeding them. It only cost 3 ice cream cone cups full for $1. We also fed them bread. When we first walked in the turkey made us all a little apprehensive. He pecked hard at the food and made me wonder if he'd be going for my hand next. It was scary. But once we dodged him we found a happy little group of chicks that just loved to be fed and petted.
Dad was able to join us for about half our stay there. He was on lunch. While he was with us each of the kids fed a pony and a donkey. Three carrots for $1. The kids really enjoyed our visit there. The goats and sheep were a little too up close and personal for me, so we didn't venture far in their habitat. We said hello to the big fat pig, but he was being a little lazy for conversation. There were also frogs, cats, a guinea pig and peacocks.
We saw three families we knew there at playgroup and it seems fun was had by all. Before we left the kids insisted on visiting the chickens again. The boys even got brave enough to pick them up and carry them around. Thank heaven for hand sanitizer, bathtubs, and washing machines. All came in handy today. We had a great time and will be back soon to visit our new friends- of the barnyard variety.

Morning Funnies..

So, this morning at breakfast we got away from the table for some reason, so I told the kids they needed to come back to the table and finish their cereal. Then, Billy yells out as loud as he can "First one there's a rockin' egg!" I just "cracked" up. I'm still laughing about it. Then, I explained the saying, "the last one there is a rotten egg". And Billy then asked was a rotten egg was. So, I explained that it meant an old and stinky egg that had gone bad. Then Billy said he didn't want to be a stinky egg, he wanted to be a rockin' egg. I give up. I think they get their own ideas and there's no talking them out of them. Hope this made you laugh today! Have a good one.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Three more pics... of me and my siblings, courtesy of my mother.
As for my children and that sibling group, here's our news today.
We had a picnic lunch at the park today with dad. It was so humid, but the wind was merciful.
Ian- had an accident free day. He wore underwear all day long! He is still very difficult to pry away from the computer, but we're getting better about using a timer.
Billy- got new Spiderman shoes and socks for when school starts. He'll be sad to see his 4T's go, but the pants are almost above his ankles now. For a boy, he loves his clothes.
Carley- got a cute Barbie princess blanket today. You can really see her forming words in her head lately. She'll be talking in no time. And the way she jabbers, you won't be able to stop her.
Carl and Charity- finished shopping for their 6 month food storage. Hooray! Now the trick will be rotation. We also paid the window guy for finishing the work of replacing 8 window panes.
That's our day...until tomorrow.

Monday, July 28, 2008

A Long Time Ago

Denver, CO
The Hohn Family - Charles, Darlene, Charity (baby) and James (age 4)

Sumter, SC

Charity's turn on the computer (probably 3 yrs. old)

James waiting for his turn (probably 7 yrs. old)

Panama, Panama

Glenn-7/8 (Andrew now), Charity-9, Dad, Bridgette-poodle and James-13.

Someone got me thinking about when I was little, growing up with two brothers and I just had to pull these pictures out for them. I don't have too many, but these I snagged. We were a wild bunch. And we were so busy. My mom always made sure to keep us active, she was a stay-at-home mom, until we moved to Las Vegas in 1990. My dad loved to teach us computer games. He was in the US Air Force. James was a boy scout and I was a girl scout. My mom was a troop leader for James' troop. If I remember correctly, James played saxophone. Andrew- Glenn- was always the comic relief. He kept everything light, and not so surprising he still does. My Mom and Dad divorced shortly after this bottom picture and I have to say, my childhood in these three pictures is a bit of a blur. I remember a lot about my life after these pictures though. But, I think I was I was a really happy child- a little moody as my parents inform me, but happy. I remember lots of birthday cakes and parties. We always had special cakes, they were my mom's trademarks. I have most of those pans now. My parents insisted on good grades when I was growing up. I remember being encouraged in band and other activities. My parents always had friends, even if we did move every two or three years. I was born in Denver, Colorado. We lived there three years. Our parents were married in Tampa, Florida, where their parents live. Then we lived in South Carolina (Sumter, I think). Three years there. I did gymastics there and Brownies . We were friends with the Kianna's next door- they were a Hawaiian family. In 1987ish we moved to Panama City, Panama during the invasion of the Panama Canal. It was a very interesting and enriching time of my life. We got coconuts right off the tree. We climbed star fruit trees and caught geckos for a dime a piece. A gardener, Luis caught a wild iguana and showed him to us. I have a picture of it somewhere. We also went bodysurfing down a large gutter during a rainstorm- that was frightening. We lived there until late 1989. The Invasion, not so happy of a memory. It was scary. Lots of noise. So 1990-1993 we lived in Las Vegas. In Vegas, in 1993 our parents divorced. We parted ways then. My little brother and I moved to Florida with my mother to grandma and grandpa's. Dad was stationed in Texas and James stayed in Las Vegas. It was very hard for all of us. So, that's a little about what I remember about growing up.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Horsey ride, EVERYBODY?

All Aboard!

It's been a fun and relaxing Sunday. Carl and I were sustained and set apart as co-chairpersons on the activities committee at church. I taught Billy's class today- his teacher's on vacation for a few Sundays. We played with the kids alot today. We inventoried our food storage and are going to work on building it up again this week for FHE. We'll be teaching the kids about preparedness and why we have a food storage. Billy calls it out "food store". Anyhow, that's all for now.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Funny Time, Dinner Time

Reach!!! What a reward for eating fish-
a chocolate covered marshmallow cookie.
We finally found a food she's not terribly fond of... fish.

Appropriate table manners? I think not.

So, apparently dinner is the new place for jokes in the Hartson house. After finishing my dinner, I showed my boys my plate. Then I asked what was on my plate. Billy said "Nothing!". I said that's right, I ate ALL my food. Then Billy responded with "And it looks like you have a baby in your tummy." So, my son now knows how to call someone fat without using the word. Great. I have to say though, it was pretty funny, even if it was a bit rude. And the laughter doesn't stop there. Upon nearly finishing their plates, Daddy told Ian if he finished his fish he could have a special treat. He showed Ian the treat and set it on the table in front of him but across the table. So, then Daddy asked Ian, what do you have to do to get your treat. And Ian says, "This" as he reaches his arm as far as he can across the kitchen table. It was hilarious. Well, that was dinner. More laughter awaits tomorrow I suppose.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Just another day

Ian loves to help feed the dog.
The joy of cousins. Sleepy from hard playing,

they cuddle up in the airbed.

My girl of many faces. All of them sweet.

So, today began as most days do around here. A little cuddle bug joined me in bed (Billy, but they each take turns) and he was content to sleep next to me until his tummy told him to wake me. Then, I fed the kids and took the dog for a walk.

After that I became ambitious. I went to the neighbors' house and borrowed their mower. And in just 25 minutes I mowed the yard. It helped that their mower is brand new and so easy to use, even on my ridiculously overgrown lawn. The kids had a blast playing in the grass clippings. It was really a mess. They all had to shower in the basement before I'd let them come inside. Then I had to take Skittles for a walk in the rain. I managed to mow before it came, but if Skit misses his walk, I'm usually sorry later.

After dinner we had a little plastic canvas block war. We call these little guys, jingle blocks, each one is constructed from plastic canvas and has a jingle bell in it. There's one for every letter of the alphabet. It was a special Christmas gift from cousin Brooke and grandma. It was fun throwing them at each other. The kids did great for dinner tonight, not a normal thing. We had taco salad.

Tomorrow's plan is caulking the windows. I'm going to try to chip as much of the old caulk out in the morning and Carl will finish with the new caulk after work. So, it looks like a fun-filled weekend. I'm teaching Billy's Sunday school class for 3 weeks. So, tonight I think I'll start planning. Goodnight.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Lesson Learned

So, on Sunday a friend spoke of choosing our attitude and yesterday I'd decided that that sounded like just what I needed... and I'm pretty sure the "teacher" was looking directly at me when sharing this advice. So, last night I chose to put a smile on and again in the morning, I put it back on. Then, I forgot this evening that I was wearing it and almost suddenly it withered away. And hence, I have learned, when you are focused on choosing happiness, it finds you with little effort. But, the moment you forget to choose it, negativity envelopes you. So, here we are trying to choose happiness and smile.
I have so much to be grateful for. Today I walked into a freecycle find of several cans of paint. Now, we needed primer and paint, but wow did we get more than we bargained for. I have paint for every room in the house. I'm so excited. I can't wait to start painting. I have greys, blues, beiges, whites, greens and browns. I even got wood stain and exterior paint and primer. It is thrilling to have just what I was looking for with no cost! And boy could this place use some paint.
Well, that's my thought for the day. And oh, today Ian told me in the sweetest way, "Mommy, you're a good driver." He was sitting in the backseat and I was driving so slow, feeling incapable of picking up speed, I was almost stuck at 30 mph. And when his sweet little voice said Mommy can drive cuz mommy is big, I just had to laugh a little. Then he told Billy, "You are too little to drive" and then "Carley is too little too drive". "But mommy is big so she can drive when daddy not here." Apparently I can't drive when Carl's home and because of that he never noticed my great capabilities until today, when Carl wasn't there to shuttle us around. It was cute at the time, and seemed cuter than it sounds now. Goodnight.

Roller Coaster

Well, I've had very low days since my last post and a few high days. It's been so hard to be optimistic in the face of potty-training accidents, a fallen-thru offer and lead paint scraping. Not to mention the stress of paying for two houses. But we have been trying to smile in the face of opposition and trials. We went to play putt-putt with the kids the other night and our neice was here too. She's was such a blessing, staying up to play games with us each night. She also helped out tremendously with the little ones. Although, dirty diapers still frighten her! We went to the park yesterday and I couldn't believe the agility of my 18 month old and the ability of my 3 year old, not to mention the fearlessness in my 5 year old. My kids are really becoming their own little people with a spirit of independence. I'm so grateful for them. And they're always saying the cutest things. I can't think of any right now. But I'll devote a post to it later.
I've been having lots of headaches lately. It must be time for new glasses. I just have to find a time and a sitter, to have my eyes checked out. I've been taking Tylenol 3-4 times a day. Outside of that, I've been okay. Though my back and legs are killing me from all the ladder work.
My soon-to-be sister-in-law loved the wedding invitations Krista helped me out with. She kept thanking me, but all I did was deliver them -mostly done- to Krista for the H's to be cut and glued and then I poked holes when I got them back. They really do look nice. I know Steph is proud of them. Thanks to KRISTA for all her tedious attention to detail.
I got some zucchini from Freecycle the other day and I made 6 loaves of Zucchini bread. I only have 1 1/2 left. Carl took 1 loaf to work- they loved it. One loaf went to his family in C.R. And a neighbor dropped by while they were baking, so I offered them one too. I can't believe how quick it's going. And there are so many others I wanted to share it with. I'll have to go to the Farmer's Market and buy zucchini, I guess. Well, I've got kids to clean up. So, more later.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Pulling up his pants like a big boy, now that he's using the potty!

Daddy's Girl smiles for the camera

Talk about computer kids, I can't get mine to stop!

Well, here it goes... I'm going to risk jinxing it all by telling about my recent events which bring light and hope to our difficult life lately.

We got a call from the realtor today. She says there is a family that has seen the place twice and loves it. They are very interested, but have not completed their loan application. Once they complete that complicated and sometimes drawn-out process, we might have an actual offer. Holy crap! An honest-to-goodness offer! I'll do my best not to hold my breath.

And now for news a bit more substantial... IAN IS WEARING UNDERWEAR! Yes, real, size 2T, Buzz Lightyear and Thomas the Train UNDERWEAR. I can't believe it. The child is really getting it... finally. He still has accidents, but he's really getting it. Carl actually saw him do the potty dance yesterday- trying to hold it in. Today he ran to the potty to poop, actually yelling, I have to go potty. We're down to 1 in diapers. And that's not because I didn't try to put Carley on the potty, she's just too busy with other things in life to care about bodily functions.

My new job... I am loving working as an assistant to a realtor here. I do computer work for her just an hour or two a day. It's really fun and it gives me the opportunity to contribute financially. I am using my talents in great ways. Hopefully she's as excited as I am. She seems to be.

Well, that's our excitment for the week. Wait, the week just started. I suppose there'll be more soon. Thanks for watching for the updates. Hope you are doing good and experiencing your own uplifting, promising moments.

Oh, one more piece of exciting news. The dog, after a month of living here, finally understand his potty schedule. With no fenced yard, I walk him 3 times a day, at 7 a.m., 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. And he is doing great with it now. No more messes!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

And Now for the Tail Feathers!

This morning as I was walking Skittles, I made an interesting find. A hawk feather was barely touching the dewy grass. I just had to take it home and show the kids. After searching online, I was also able to find a great picture of a hawk with the same tailfeathers. The kids were so excited to understand where the feather used to be. So, here's Billy with the feather and the pic I found online.

More Fourth of July pictures

I couldn't pass up publishing some of these other pictures. There not mainly my kids, but they're priceless. I have others, but to see them you'll just have to ask.

The Fourth and Tail Feathers

Our Fourth of July was great this year. We had a barbecue with some old friends and a few new. It was a nice laid back time. The boys got to drive their first Power Wheels (it belonged to the neighbor) and Carley loved the slide, swing set, sand box and other toys. There were a few little ones there to keep the kids busy. Then we drove to the local fireworks display. The boys did sparklers in the field where we watched the fireworks. I got some great pictures of their reactions to the big display. There just isn't enough room to post all of the great pictures.

Outside of the Fourth, we've been busy. We have to scrape the windows and repaint. And we have so many other projects in the works. Well, that will have to do for now. More soon.