Thursday, January 31

vinegar and dust bunnies

I walked down the stairs this morning with a happy step. My house is clean. Everywhere I look....cleaness. Thom had a cleaning crew of three(!) come in yesterday. It took them an entire work day to wade through this nightmare we call home. I'm not sure what the problem has been. I just know the need for a dustbunny-free hall has been low on my list, ( otherwise, I'd've cleaned it) while it has been very high in my desires. I hate disorder. I want clutter-free and dust-free and dirt-free environments for myself and my family. But I seem to be incapable of providing them of late. Yeah, I know all you working moms will jump to sisterhood here and explain my busy day as the culprit. And yes, homeschooling and a full time job do sound like they're time eaters. But I know the truth. I know that there are hours in the evening when I have a book opened on my lap and a fire at my feet. I know there is time to clean. I even tell myself, just get up and wipe down the baseboards. It can be done in 10 minutes and then it'll be done! How long can it take to put a load of towels away? If I did a bit each night....well.....I don't. I'm slothful. I'm not proud. I'm horrified with myself.
But now? It is sparkling with an ever so slight smell of vinegar. Wow! These women must take it very serious if vinegar was used. I feel like avian flu was probably a risk factor in corners of this house yesterday morning, but now....zapped by vinegar.
Thank you, Thank you, thank you, Thom. You wonder among men, who takes care of your family so dearly. Maybe we can make it last....maybe.....

I am off to my shimmery shower now....

Wednesday, January 30

kate vs. coffee

My heart is pounding madly and I'm breaking out in sweat beads. Why? I had a second cup of caffeine this morning. I'm now miserable. I want it to stop. It won't. I feel like I have a connection to judy garland and her prescription drug addiction. If there was something available to counteract this pulsing feeling of energy in my limbs I'd take it. Now. head feels like a bag full of scrabble tiles all trying to form words at once. I need to s...l...o...w....down.

Wednesday, January 16

sickness and fire

Does anyone remember a few blogposts back when I referred to Haley's blog and seconded the motion on how it would be okay with me if I was to get "sick" for a few days so I could lay around and read and watch television?
Well, let me amend that. I've had some kind of minor flu-bug. I say minor because I imagine the real thing lasts more than a day and a half. I was struck, out of the blue, with an intense headache on Monday afternoon, which lead to nausea and vomiting (sorry if that's too much info). What was I thinking? Noone wants to read or watch tv when they're ill in such a manner. They want to pass over to the next world....
We had a major fire here in town and Thom was there till about 11 p.m. Tuesday night going through one of the buildings, which he had recently finished renovating, trying to assess the damage (extensive). When he came home exhausted, and melted into a chair, I was still so sick I couldn't be near him because the smell of smoke permeated from him and made me feel the need to run for the ivory throne and expell the ice chips I'd been sucking. Just when my husband most needed a loving touch from his wife, I had to stay far away from him, because even after he'd showered the scent of the fire was deep in his skin. So, I'm done with needing some sick days. About 3 a.m. this morning I woke up in the chair I was sleeping in, wondering what was different. Then I head no longer hurt! Praise the Lord!!!
I can't imagine how I'd cope with a serious illess like our friend Damien. Here I always thought I was tough skinned. Well, I'm not....I'm a full blown baby....When the phone rang Monday night and I looked at the caller i.d. I answered it like this, "mommy, I'm siiiick". Alright, I did it to get a laugh out of Jedd, but still.....
Tuesday I couldn't get comfortable in any position so Jedd and Annie, dear children that they are, brought down Thom's horrid brown plether bark-a-lounger through 5 doorways and a flight of stairs so I could rest comfortably! What did I ever do to deserve these children?
Emma, bless her, wanted to take care of me when she got home from school, but she was afraid I might vomit in front of her and kept fleeing from the room.....
Thankyou Lord, for a quick recovery. I know I did absolutely nothing to deserve you!!!
Please keep burnt out shopkeepers, Kevin and Karen, and Sims and Dennis in your prayers, as well as the tenants that have been temporarily relocated to a motel until Thom can get their apartments re-habitable.

Tuesday, January 8


New Year's Eve was spent with my family in Vermont. It was wonderful- snow fell for days and my aunt and uncle's home is like a northern Disneyland for outdoor sports and indoor relaxation. My brother, Jeff, brought over his snowmobile as well and Jedd will never be the same. I walked by a window and glanced out, I saw my 11 y.o. son sittting ona snowmobile by himself and thought, "how nice of the guys to let him sit on it alone." The next thing I see the lad is driving off to manly cheers. He did a small circle and came back slowly to the guys. My brother said, "take off Jedd! Have fun! Go for it!" and Jedd did. I threw clothes on and went out and jumped on another. It was my uncle's new HUGE one. It was scary. I circled back and asked for a smaller one, please. He brought out my aunt's. Ah yes. This was better. But the snow was beating into my helmut so hard that even with the defogger, I found it disconcerting. Oh, and Jedd outgrew his snowpants but we didn't realize that in time. So he now had my snowbibs tied up and around his neck and back to make them fit. I tried sqeezing into Emma's but the button closing? yeah, that wasn't happening. So I was out in conditions very close to blizzard force in nothing but a pair of bluejeans. Smart? Not so much. I was cozy everywhere else though, just the darn legs.

I returned the snowmobile And the three of them took off. (see 2nd photo)

My dear aunt stuck her head out the door and asked if I wanted a playmate. Of course I did! She whipped on snowclothes and was out pulling toboggans and sleds in an astonishingly quick flash. We went to the hills behind the house and started down. Whoo hoo! The men came around the corner to ferry up the sleds. Jeff comes up with the brilliant idea of tying my rope through the back of the snowmobile and holding on. Oh my gosh! Besides the several feet of snow that piled up on me and the fact that I always ended up in a pile while he kept going...what fun! At one point I realized that the pain in my legs was not going away and I started to wonder what exactly frostbite felt like in it's beginning stages. I threw snowballs at a window to get my mom's attention and pleaded with her to come open the back door. I suddenly didn't think I could make it around to the front or side doors. She helped me peel off the layers. But when it came to the legs, there were no layers My jeans actually stood up by themselves when removed. My legs were like iceblocks. I was an idiot! Who does that? I think she did start to scold me before she took pity on me.

Upstairs for a cribbage marathon. It is my new all-consuming passion. Right word? Probably not, let's just say I learned this a few months back when my mom, aunt and uncle came to visit and I am addicted to this game. Anyone play or want to learn? So far it's just Jedd and I here in the Huntington home who have the bug. And Jedd is amazingly good.

Today, it is back to work. Can I be honest here? I do not want to go back! Anyone want to buy a business? Thom assures me that once I'm back it'll be fine. We'll see....we'll see.......

This photo doesn't belong here, but I'm sticking it in for fun. Me and mom dancing with stuffed animals in our pajamas. Sometimes you need to publicize a photo like this to keep yourself humble....

Monday, January 7

Christmas part 1

We'll start with Christmas. I worked until about 4 or so Christmas Eve. That wasn't the plan, but it is amazing how many husbands put off shopping for their beloveds till then! At 3 p.m., when I had intended on closing I had a guy rush in and buy a 215 dollar purse for his wife! That's cutting it close on the big gift! I can understand coming in for a few stocking stuffers or a bar of soap to beef up the pile, but a $215 gift at the last minute??? Thom was there with the kids when the guy came in and had to clamp his hand over Jedd's mouth and physically remove him to the back room because when I told the man his total Jedd started in awe, "How much did she say that was?!"

The candlelight service at church that evening was lovely and tear-moving. Then home to finish wrapping and stuffing stockings. Emma and Jedd had theirs hung by the chimney with care. Annie couldn't find hers so had a pillowcase hanging off a chair arm. But with care.

Our tradition in the morning is to come down and light a fire and make coffee. We light some candles and the kids can come down around 7. Somehow Jedd messed up the setting of his alarm clock and at 6 a.m. music started screaming loud enough that it brought to mind the army's trick of blasting the enemy out of their holes with mega-speakers blowing hard rock at them. Thom and I were up. Somehow the kids went back to sleep. (in fact I don't think Emma budged)

7 a.m. they all giggled their way down, and lumped onto the sofa. I handed round stockings and they dug in. This was an Edmunds Scientific year so they were filled with hand boilers and exploding rocks and electicity globes. Good fun for all. Per tradition in the Huntington family, after stockings Thom read the Christmas Story from a padded book I bought when the twins were toddlers. The one year I couldn't locate the book it was a great disappointment. It's funny how much small things mean to kids. We still read the story from a bible, but it wasn't the same.
What a lovely day. Thom's dad and sister came over and the Howard family and the Ballengers joined us as well. I love a full house on a holiday. Food every where. Kids jumping on the trampoline. Oh... yeah, we surprised the kids with one of those. And I can attest to the fact that 17 years old is not to old for jumping! I can also say 46 year olds can jump but not as gracefully.

Saturday, January 5

Happy New Year!

We're home from Vermont. No exclamation point. I'm glad to see Annie and Thom, who stayed behind, but I miss the 3 feet of snow and the mother's cozy house and the sister and brother and aunt and uncle and nieces and nephew. Isn't it curious, as I look back on that sentence, that I put snow before family? That deserves an exclamation!
I haven't opened the store since Christmas Eve. I have no intention of opening today. I do think I'll go in and start red-lining for a huge sale starting next Tuesday.
There are lots of vermont photos to upload and stories to tell. But I'll save them for Monday. I just wanted to check in today. There's a tree to be undressed and tossed. SO MUCH LAUNDRY to be washed, dried and put away. Cupboards are bare and need to be restocked. I'm home. Much as I love Vermont, I know I will settle into my routine happily once I'm settled.
Happy New Year!