Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Priceless, redux

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

(No, this is not a repeat post... quite.)

Kitty hat:
$1.00 at Target

Velvet-y black onesie:
$3.50 at Once Upon a Child

Dress black pants:
$7.50 at Once Upon a Child

(They were part of a set with a white shirt & a dressy black sweater that will be used over her short sleeved Christmas dress.)

Tiny kitty socks:

(Again, thanks, TNGreatAunt!)

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Confession is good for the soul

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

7:30 pm 10/29
Halloween candy first purchased

12:30 pm 10/30
Halloween candy bag first opened and "sampled"

Well, I made it 17 hours, but this is why I don't buy it until it's almost Halloween!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weekend Report

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Busy weekend! Gramma Yori hung up her paintbrush and called it quits after a very productive week and a half stay with us. I'm sure Grampa Jem was glad to see her back home on Saturday, but we were sad to see her go. Man, did she get a TON done while she was here! We even had overlap of guests when Jaysan and The Sexy Blonde came out on Friday to visit us. We took it a little slower over the weekend when they were here, but still were rather distracted with house and children. Had a good time anyway.

I've uploaded and organized a new set of photos on Flikr to show some of our work in progress. I haven't remembered to take pictures of everything (like the messy, messy basement ceiling removal), but you can see a bit of it anyway. Click on the picture in the sidebar to the right to see the rest of the pictures. If you want to read about the whole calcimine-paint-removal process, Mr. Kluges just wrote about it on House of 42 Doors.

But the big news from the weekend is that Penguin said "Mama"!!!!! Well, it was really more like a very sad "mamamamamamama," but still! Yay! That's my girl!

Friday, October 26, 2007

The Na-Mo cousins

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Well, I did it. I signed myself up for National Blog Posting Month. That means every day in November I've committed myself to blogging.

It seems to me that NaBloPoMo is the 10 year old little girl looking up at the sixteen year old cousin getting ready for a date that is National Novel Writing Month. She watches every bit of primping and make-up, and you know she's going to put on the tiniest little bit of lipstick if she's allowed. But she's just not big enough yet, for dating and dancing, though she looks and longs for that day.

I sometimes look and long and consider doing National Novel Writing Month. I have nothing but awe for the friends of mine who have done it - some for many years. But I just can't see carving out the time this year with a three-year-old, a six-month-old, a house in renovation, and the process of moving.

But it also seems like I'll have an excuse every year. Something or other will make me say, "Well, not this year, because ___."

I hope some year I'll take the plunge and graduate up from the little girl/baby steps of NaBloPoMo to the big girl NaNoWriMo... it just won't be this one.

(But, that being said, I AM going to do NaBloPoMo - even baby steps can get you someplace.)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Pretty, pretty walls

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Gramma Yori has been here, working her butt off, since last Wednesday. (I hope this doesn't jinx it...but,) After hours and hours and hours of peeling and scraping off paint, spreading walls with flour paste (works much better than just washing off the calcimine), scraping off the dried flour paste along with a lot of the chalky calcimine that sticks to it, washing the walls, washing the walls again, taping trim and spreading dropcloths, painting the trim in Pumpkin and Penguin's rooms, sanding Mr. Kluges's patches in the walls and one spot on the ceiling, priming the girls' rooms, and painting practically the entire upstairs... she will probably get done with painting the girls' rooms today.

"Wow!" is what I've got to say about what she's gotten done. That and "Thank you!" For merely room and board (and I've been trying to cook yummy stuff!), she's worked her tushie off over at our brick house. (She keeps joking that we haven't seen her bill yet...and we keep offering to double her wages...) And gotten SO MUCH accomplished that I'd only hoped would get done before we moved in. I really wanted to paint the girls' rooms and their trim before we got in, but that was all before the discovery of the calcimine paint underneath their walls and the HUGE job it is to take care of that. Once we saw that, we figured we might have to move Penguin in to the guest room while we finished her room, but no, thanks to help from all of the grandparents (but especially the retired Gramma Yori), we're so much farther along than that! Our room, the entire hallway, the "sewing room," and now the girls' room (plus all the ceilings and 2 of the closets) will be painted. Hooray!!!

So, hooray for painted walls and parents who help out their (possibly crazy, what-are-they-getting-themselves-into) kids!

Monday, October 22, 2007

I don't think Sudafed's gonna help...

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Sorry for the lighter than usual posting lately. We've certainly been busy with the house. Gramma Yori came on Wednesday and has been working up a storm every day. She's painted the hallway (Buckram Binding) (and she said thank again, Gramma Pet, for taping!), she's washed the calcimine walls, and she's painted all the ceilings. Busy lady!

With the house, and a (very easy to have around) guest, and regular child minding, and usual household chores, I've been a bit busy. And I seem to be suffering some sort of mental cold because it feels like my words are all congested up in my brain. There's just not the "Oh, I feel like posting about..." topics rattling around in there as usual.

So, hopefully this mental stuffiness will loosen up soon and I'll be brimming with new ideas to write about, but until then, I'll try to just keep making the rounds of your blogs, enjoying them and trying to give my own brain a bit of a jump start!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

You know you're overrun by rodents...

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

...when your 3-year-old puts a chunk of food on her spoon sitting on the table and tells you it's a 'mousetrap.'

Mr. Kluges may call it the House of 42 Doors, but we're less than a dozen away from having caught 42 mice.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

'Round and 'round and 'round she goes...

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

...but which way? Nobody knows.*

I saw this spinning lady through Notes from the Trenches. I don't know how well it will work with a slower connection, but it's intriguing! Don't click on it if you're trying to get stuff done, though...

And let me know - which way is she spinning for you?

*Ok, that's really more like, "Nobody can agree because some people see her spinning clockwise and some see her spinning counterclockwise (or anticlockwise to use a more European phrasing), but it sure is fun/frustrating to try to get her to switch from the first direction you see," but that's way too long and doesn't rhyme.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Our Favorite Helpers!

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

We love our parents for many, many reasons...

...but right now, we're really appreciating how much they're helping us out!

<--Gramma Yori

Gramma Pet-->

<--Grampa Jem

Grampa Pharaoh-->


Friday, October 12, 2007

Soundtrack of Our Lives, Oct. 07 edition

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Pwivacy! Pwivacy!

Aaaahhh. OOOOhhhh. Ah-oooOOOOOOOOOGH!

Once we're in the other house...

I called this contractor today and...

No! I don't WANT to!


I can't wait until I've got a washer and dryer!

So the eejits at work...

I can do it ALL BY MYSELF!!!


Thanks for coming to help!

I left a message again about those references, but they still haven't gotten back to me.


Mmmmmm. Ah. AAAAhhh. Mmmm-Aaaaaaaaaaah!

Do you have to go potty?

I'm still waiting to hear back from...


(That last one's my least favorite!)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Changing the subject

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Ok, now that I've traumatized you all (or at least one brother - sorry!) I'll get a new post up. Just needed to speak up on the whole "breastfeeding is a natural way to feed your child and you shouldn't have to hide the the bathroom to do it" issue. Granted, I was self-conscious enough when I first had Pumpkin that I _did_ try to nurse her in the bathroom the first time Mr. Kluges and I ever went to a restaurant. It didn't work well, wasn't comfortable, abandoned him to sit alone for a long time, and just wasn't it. Since then, I became more comfortable nursing in public or around other people. But for a new mother, it can be a very personal, private act... and people looking at you funny can feel very embarrassing.

ANYWAY, I titled this "Changing the subject," so I will.

I love Craig's List. There's one for the area where we live and so far we've purchased...
  • a Bumbo chair
  • a Little Tikes climber with slide (sort of like this, but with a roof)
  • an old by-hand coffee grinder that works
  • a beautiful 5x8 rug for the office (for $35! We love it!)
  • an antique radio that Mr. Kluges thinks is cool
  • a seriously-like-new! child's play kitchen with food and stuff (SHHH!!! Don't tell Pumpkin - it's hidden in the attic for Xmas!)
and yesterday we got 4 dining room chairs for free! FREE, people! Granted, they're no lookers, but will certainly do with the hand-me-down table my parents are bringing this weekend until we decide we want to spend money on a brand new dining room set.

So, if you're into reuse for the environment or frugality, check it out. Granted, there's some junk and definitely some overpriced stuff, but looking fairly often can find you some good stuff!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

It's food, people.

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Food, not obscenity

Food, not obscenity
(Ok, strange food, but still... food.)

Food, not obscenity

Food, not obscenity

Food, not obscenity

Food, not obscenity.

You might not have heard about it, but there's been an uproar in the corner of the blogosphere I spend my time about women and breastfeeding. You see, Facebook, a social networking website, has banned pictures of breastfeeding as obscene. Anyway, there's been a call by the League of Maternal Justice (great name!) for The Great Virtual Breast Fest to highlight that breastfeeding is a natural way to nourish a child, and since this is important to me, here's my contribution.

It's food, people, not obscenity.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Weekend Report

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Sorry about not posting much lately. Grampa Jem & Gramma Yori were here Friday afternoon to Monday morning and we were busy! Got lots done, but still lots to do! (So, Grampa Pharaoh and Gramma Pet, there's still plenty to do when you come this upcoming weekend!)

I mostly took care of the kids as usual, but the rest of the crew managed to empty out the crap in the basement (someday soon I hope to post pix of the mountains of STUFF that was left behind at this place), finish scraping the paint off the walls in Penguin's room, paint the ceiling and trim in Pumpkin's room, fix and sharpen the lawnmower that was left behind and our own (now we've got one at each place and don't have to haul one back and forth anymore!), and peel all the paint off in Pumpkin's room.

We'd hoped to finish Pumpkin's room all the way, but discovered the paint was starting to peel in there, so it's now getting the full paint-removal, calcimine-wash-off, repaint deal like Penguin's. To let you know how time intensive this is, it takes 8-10 hours to just peel off the old paint in these tiny rooms. Then the walls will have to be scrubbed 2-4 times with soapy water, washed again 1-2 times with clean water, and then primed, before they can be painted. Yeah, and here we were thinking we could just, you know, PAINT THE WALLS like a normal house! HA!

(In good news though, the paint store was having a sale of 25% off most of their paint, so we stocked up for both girls' room, the ceilings, the hallway, and primer!)

Eventually we'll be able to move in...

P.S. Much better post about our weekend just put up by Mr. Kluges over on House of 42 Doors. You'd think he wasn't repeatedly interrupted by two small children while trying to write...

Friday, October 05, 2007

Bizarre News Items II

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Here's a few interesting articles for your Friday reading enjoyment.

Both of these next two are from today, so you might have already seen them, but funny! I'd say if you work in an airport, you could end up with a lot of strange stories.

Mr. Potato Head in ecstacy bust

Man's Pants Catch Fire at Airport

But this one's the best...

Two men arrested for driving same vehicle while intoxicated

(That'd be simultaneously, people.)

Thursday, October 04, 2007

It had to be done

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Now that we're living in America... was inevitable.

It was time for Pumpkin to have her first Twinkie.

Yeah, she liked it.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Pumpkin's "Mobile" Meal

(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

Alexander Calder meets Julia Child?

(Careful, it comes on kind of loud.)


(c) 2007 Ms. Huis Herself at

You know those days when you're just crabby? Grumpy and touchy and easily set off?

Yeah, the ones that are no fun for you... or anybody around you?

When those happen to me, it's often because of a lot of little things building up over time. Big things mean I get upset, or mad, or sad, or whatever and then get over it. Little things build up like itchy little psychological mosquito bites. Annoying, and not troublesome, but oh, how they irritate! In fact, I can just feel my shoulders getting all tense over it...

Well, I gotta say that I'm feeling a little "itchy" these days. It seems like we're working on the house and working on the house and working on the house and not getting anywhere. Of course, when we're there working on it, really just Mr. Kluges is working on it because I'm watching the kids. I might get a little bit done if Pumpkin is "helping" him and Penguin's content to go in her exersaucer, but all in all, I feel like my time there is pretty worthless. I _know_ it's not - that every little bit is moving forward - but it seems so incremental sometimes.

We're also dealing with trying to keep up two places. Two lawns that need mowing (and one lawnmower to haul back and forth that can't fit in the back of the Blazer when the car seats are in), two places to make sure are stocked with diapers and at least some food, two places that keep getting dusty and dirty...

But of course we only have some things over at the brick house, which means that I'm also always trying to remember if I need to bring over more spare clothes or something. And while I picked up another exersaucer at Once Upon a Child and the pack-and-play is set up over there, I don't have Penguin's swing or other toys and conveniences there, so I end up holding her more. Which means I don't get anything done.

Over at House of 42 Doors I recently posted about the painting problems we're having. In another "nothing is ever easy" complaint, we brought the big drapes in to be dry cleaned. Sure it's expensive, but then they're clean, and it's WAY cheaper than replacing them and the drapes are nice and neutral and seem newish. Well, that's all fine and good, but when we went to pick them up, it turns out they'd tried to call (no answering machine machine here) to say that the linings might be ruined in the process and did we still want to have them try? Well, no... so now we're waiting for them to be sent back, and we'll try vacuuming them to remove dust and cobwebs and then trying that Febreze spray to see if that'll be good enough. (Of course, we don't want to do that until the electricians are done because they'll be making a mess and probably a fair amount of dust, so instead of being able to check off "Drapes - done," they now go back on the very long "To Do" list. Hear those little psychological mosquitoes?!?!?)

And it's Tuesday tonight... which means I get to sort a ton of laundry and do the weekly hauling it to the laundromat. I'm SO TIRED of having laundry be a weekly ordeal instead of just something I'm doing throughout the week. Thankfully, TNGreatAunt has offered us a washer/dryer set as a belated wedding present (because she promised us them way back then... even though she keeps giving us other stuff, too, to make up for that we hadn't needed them before *grin*) / housewarming present. So when my parents come next weekend, I think we'll go try to pick out a set. Probably won't be able to use them until the electricians and septic line guys are done, but at least it's a light at the end of the tunnel, you know?

Whew. Now that was a bit of a rant, wasn't it? Forgive me for complaining about the will-be-great new house and all, but this whole "doing some fixing and cleaning before we move in" business is taking for-eh-ver. At least once we're in, then I can work on stuff at naptime and put things away so that I actually know where they are (I'm SO looking forward to knowing where things are!) and only worry about keeping up one place.

Speaking of keeping up one place and laundry day and all, I should go and try to get some stuff done before both girls are up. Thanks for listening to my rant!

P.S. On a more positive note, a whole bunch of recipes have been posted recently on Recipeeps 4 Us, so check 'em out!