Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chocolate Eden

I'm having a hard time deciding which pictures to post. There are SO many cute ones from last weekend. A lot of the same poses, with slightly different looks, and to most people they would seem repetitive, but to a mom, each one, although only slightly different, is unique and wonderful. It's also hard to decide - do I go vintage, vivid, black and white, chocolate, hazy, bright.....so many fun and wonderful ways to bring out the best in a photograph. Almost too many.

I don't like to favor any one particular girl, but Eden is just SO easy to photograph. Unlike Hanna, who is more uncomfortable in front of the camera (like her mom), and it shows in a lot of her pictures. Strange facial expressions, one eye closed, awkward body language. Eden is more at ease. She is confident. Emma is ok. But she overdoes her poses (think extreme head tilts) and like Hanna, squints her eyes when she has to smile on queue. But she's 5. All three of them take beautiful pictures when they are willing to be photographed. And a good photographer should be able to capture great photos of anyone, by making them at ease and bringing out their personality.

This is totally Hanna's personality.


Ok, so it took me ALL evening to get reacquainted with photoshop again. It had been so long since I've used it, I forgot my tricks! I'm always trying to improve my editing because it's SO EASY to go overboard and make your pictures look too edited. It's so much fun and the effects can be so cool. But sometimes, a photo can end up looking worse than SOOC. I am guilty of this at times. I am trying to let myself learn that sometimes less is more.

In the photos above, the first one is SOOC. And the second is with a little help. Just a little. It didn't need a whole lot. Basically, a lot of the time all a photo needs is a little color boost, maybe some sharpness or contrast and in this case, a little owie eraser too. The lighting and bokeh were already fabulous so I knew if I just did a few things, this could really be a great picture.

I know it's not professional grade photo editing here, but considering I have taught myself EVERYTHING from figuring out my camera's manual settings to editing techniques in Photoshop CS5, it's not too shabby.

Oh, and it helps to have one of the cutest 5 year old models on the planet to capture!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Lazy Sunday

I mean it. L-A-Z-Y. And it was perfect.

First of all, it was a rest day for me (which means I didn't have to workout). Second, I made a big breakfast and we all sat down together as a family and ate. I made a microwave berry coffee cake for my husband and he loved it. The fact that I just threw it together without a recipe and it turned out edible is still a mystery. Third, we went on a picnic.

I love picnics. I always want to do them when the weather is nice and today the weather was perfect. Beautiful, sunny, no wind.....just perfect. We went to our usual spot not far from home - convent park. There really isn't much there but a boat landing into the river and some frolfing baskets, but there is a nice grassy area with many big shade trees which make it a wonderful picnic setting. No playground equipment of any kind but the kids love going. They can let their creative imaginations run wild. I love that they can have fun with sticks and rocks and not much else.

From a photography standpoint this place is stunning. There are tiny beams of sunshine casting sporadic rays through the leaves- a photographer's delight. At least this photographer. But I'm just a hobbyist so don't listen to me. I mainly say that because I don't want to share my favorite spot on lazy Sunday afternoons ;) The bokeh from today was breathtaking. I can't wait to upload some photos.

Anyway, we brought our picnic basket, some blankets, the camera, the dog and had a wonderful relaxing couple of hours. I snapped many pictures of my beautiful girls using nature as my studio. We helped them build forts in the trees using big sticks and our picnic blankets. We sat in the shade and did nothing. Absolutely nothing - except enjoy the beauty of a quiet summer afternoon. It really was splendid.

We came home, built more forts in the yard, and ordered Chinese food. Now I'm on the couch blogging while my husband plays Civilization a few feet away. The dog is sleeping on the floor and the kids are at the neighbor's house playing. Still a perfect lazy Sunday.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Emma's trip to Sweden

Emma got to spend a lot of quality time with Farmor on her almost 2 week trip to Sweden this past month. My husband took all the pictures and I think he did a fabulous job capturing the sweet moments between grandmother and her grandchild.

Even though I have been to this area a few times, I am still in awe at the beauty of it. How can I not be? Living in a flat prehistoric lake bed isn't exactly scenic. But the island in which they live seems so quiet and majestic. The houses and countryside are very charming. Here is a small bit of information about the island of Orust.

One of the many wonderful things about Lisbeth is that she is a very "hands-on" grandma. She is either on the floor or on the run, playing with Emma. She gets down to her level and really interacts with her. Plays with her. Gets involved. That's the kind of grandma I hope to be someday.

So many wonderful memories Emma will have of her childhood trips to Sweden. What a special bond she has with her Farmor. She is one lucky girl.

Friday, August 26, 2011

First day of school success

First day of school yesterday was a breeze. The only "glitch", if you can even call it that, was that Emma was awake at 4am. Starving. My gracious husband got up with her so she could eat. Then they came back to bed and we attempted to sleep a little longer. It didn't really happen though.

I was a little concerned that her new earlier bedtime was to blame for the ridiculously early morning. But since we had to wake her up at 6:45 this morning, I think it's pretty safe to say she was still running on Sweden time.

My little darling was eating her bedtime snack when I went out for a jog last night and by the time I came back, she had already been asleep for a half an hour (according to Bigs). Wow! We are two for two on successful bedtime!

Wednesday night I tried to bribe the crew into taking a walk with me. It was such a beautiful evening and it seemed such a waste not to get out and enjoy it. So I said, if you take a walk with me, I'll go to the store and buy everyone a donut to celebrate back to school. (seriously, getting my family to take walks is like pulling teeth) Of course everyone thought that was a perfect deal. Andreas counter offered with a trip to the dog park instead but I insisted on a walk. I honestly don't understand why the man avoids any and all forms of exercise like the plague.

But, I got my wish and we all went for an evening stroll. It didn't end up to be the perfect walk though because Emma tripped on her flip flops (Emma and flip flops do NOT mesh well) and skinned her knee to match her already beat up face. While in Sweden she took a header off Farmor's retaining wall - another flip flop mishap. So I carried her on my back about half of the way.

She runs everywhere. Always running. I'm thinking of changing her name to Forrest.

And here she is in her kindergarten classroom on the first day of school. Sitting next to her new friend, Drew, whom she calls "Drool" and adamantly protests when you try to correct her. I figure one day Drew will get sick of getting called Drool and set her straight.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Arffs....unplugged

Yesterday was the last day of summer vacation. Today, the children head back to school. My baby is a kindergartner and I will be lost at home without her.

Andreas took the day off yesterday so we could have one more last fun day together as a family. We took the kids to Thunder Road where we played games and won tickets, rode the bumper cars and go-karts. We would have played a round of mini golf but Hanna had to get back for volleyball practice. It was so much fun. That place can cure even the worst sour puss. *right, Andreas?? -- haha*

Then, on a whim, we decided to get Emma's hair cut. I was looking at her in the regular messy pony tail and thought, that's it. No matter what we do to her hair, it gets messy within 5 minutes. Now that she is in school, our morning routine would be so much easier if we didn't have to worry about her hair. I never thought Andreas would go for it but he said sure. We took her in and this is what walked out....

Really...could she BE any cuter??? I don't think so.

So, anyway, we spent the day "unplugged", which means no computer. Although Andreas still had his Windows phone at ALL times so I don't know that it really counted for him.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Lizzy Lovin'

I can hardly believe that in just 5 short days, the chaotic life of a family with 3 school age children will begin. I am going to mourn summer like crazy this year. Mostly because it was so short, due to the cold wet June. Already the mornings and evenings are getting chilly. But on the bright side, I love love love fall baking. The only thing I wish was that I didn't love love love eating it too!

Tomorrow Andreas and Emma fly back from Sweden. Tonight is the one and only night during this entire two weeks that I will be totally alone. Hanna is staying with Gram and it sounds like Eden might have a sleepover with a friend down the street. I am wondering if I will enjoy it. I will try.

Last night it was just Eden and I. We watched Tangled and ate a ton of junk food. I had this crazy idea that if I ate enough Nutella, I would get sick and never want to eat it again. I did that once when I was a kid. I remember coming home from elementary school one day and filling a paper cup with peanut butter and sprinkling it with Nestle Quick chocolate powder. It took me years and years and YEARS before I could even smell the combination of chocolate and peanut butter without getting nauseated.

I actually went to bed at a decent hour last night, just a little after 10pm. And slept until Lizzy started scratching the door to get out at 6:30. It felt good to sleep, although I think I will need at least 10 more of those nights to feel like I'm caught up.

Right now, I'm waiting for my Bigs to get online for our last web chat before they are home. He's usually on at 7am. He's late. I could have gone back to sleep.

While I am thinking of it, I should tell you a story about Lizzy lovin. At our garage sale, a woman overheard us talking about Lizzy (or maybe she heard her bark) and asked what kind of a dog I had. I said Newfoundland and she was like "OMG!! I want a Newfie soooooooooo bad! I want a Landseer." I said that is what we had and she put both hands to her cheeks like the home alone kid and screamed "Aaaaaah! Can I see her? Can I?"

She seemed harmless enough. Maybe a little crazy for wanting a giant, shedding, drooling, pain in the rump for a pet when she already had 2 dogs, but harmless. So I took her inside and warned her about how she would be greeted. "oh I don't mind. I have dogs. It's ok"

Alright lady, I warned you....

So I let the beast out and she went crazy. Both "she's". This woman is 5 foot nothing and lizzy is as tall as me when she's on her hind legs. Eventually the lady went down and Lizzy proceeded to lick her to death. This woman was eating it up. She loved it. She didn't mind the drool. She didn't mind the fur. I was starting to wonder what was wrong with her. Lizzy ended up on the floor next to her, on her back, getting the world's best tummy rub while being called "beautiful" for the next 5 minutes. Which was good because I really felt bad about having neglected her slightly over the past week, being so busy.

All the love she felt for this dog that wasn't even hers was heartwarming. It made me feel a little guilty. Maybe I whine too much about the mess and stress of having this dog. But obviously she had a thing for Newfies. It's funny how people are like that. They have a particular breed they are drawn too for whatever reason. I guess my breed is anything small and non shedding. Oh, but I love Lizzy too. I must love her, otherwise I wouldn't feel bad when I have to put her in her room, and pick out the yummiest looking treats, and spoil her with wet dog food, and attempt to take her for walks when I know that one of these days I could come home without an arm.

So yeah, it's always fun when a dog lover sees my big old hound. It makes me appreciate her more.

I'm bad at guilting my husband when Lizzy gets to be a handful and does something annoying (every 5 minutes). She's always in trouble. And I do it because he is the one that wanted a Newf. And all the promises about their gentle, quiet, laid back nature does not quite describe OUR Newf. Which is not his fault, of course. But I made it very clear on many occasions that I didn't want a dog, much less a Newf. So I have to tease him about it now and then. Maybe he'll feel bad enough to let me have a cat.

Andreas grew up with a Newfoundland and has a lot of fond memories of that dog. He always tells me that he doesn't remember their dog being so much work. To which I say, "Of course you don't! You were 7! You probably didn't have to clean up after it."

Anyway, that's my Lizzy story for the week.

it's over

Last Saturday I was dreading the upcoming garage sale. All week long it seems like I've been running crazy getting everything cleaned, organized, school shopping done, and other odds and ends taken care of. Not to mention making sure to get a workout in most days. I am, in a word, exhausted.

But I have an overwhelming feeling of satisfaction now that it is done. We did way better than I thought we would. My children made nearly $50 on their lemonade/iced coffee/cookie stand alone! Amazing! I was completely blown away by this. And the generosity of most people when it comes to kids is quite something. Even some that didn't want a cookie or a drink contributed to their fund.

I had numerous compliments on my signs: black tag board with big neon letters and balloons. Even a man in a pick up at the stop light yelled out the window how great our signs were. I knew they would be better than just the plain old boring garage sale signage where you can't even read the address when you drive past. There was a lady that said she wanted to use my signs for her sale in a few weeks. Ok ok, I'll quit bragging now. But did I mention how awesome they were?  =)

It's really funny how things you don't expect to sell do, and things you thought would go for sure, don't. I had put out quite a lot of fingernail polish, make up and hair products yesterday, and it all went. I was digging around the house last night until 1:00 trying to find more. I did. It all sold again today. My kids thought it was totally gross that someone would want to buy lipstick used by someone else. I would buy used lipstick if I liked the color. I guess I'm gross.

Anyway, my garage is back to it's newly cleaned state again. The leftover goods are all packed up and ready for Boy's Ranch. It feels good to be done. All in all, it was a success. Quite a bit of work, but I don't mind keeping busy. Not that I'd want to do it every weekend, but every other summer I could handle ;) Providing I had the help of my mom and sister again!

Two more days and my baby and husband are back from Sweden. It seems like an eternity since they left, yet it has gone fast. Does that make any sense? I was looking forward to relaxing and enjoying the quiet. Maybe I'll relax tomorrow? LOL - probably not. I will definitely need to learn to cook again. We've either been eating out or having toast or cereal for dinners, mostly. I can be so lazy and unstructured when I don't have my husband to keep me in line! He always has been my motivation to be a better person. It will be so nice to have him home again. Plus, I don't sleep worth a darn when he isn't here. I wonder if I've had a night with more than 5 hours of sleep at all these past two weeks.

Are you aware of what fijit friends are? This is ALL Eden can talk about the last two days. Her friend has one and brought it over yesterday. Eden's birthday is coming up and she might have Andreas on her side with this one. It's like a little robot. And considering he wanted a roomba vacuum just because it was a 'robot' she might get lucky, despite the $50 price tag. But at least it's better than the Hide-and-Seek Jojo. Not that Jojo is a bad toy. After all, it was the Toy Insider Top 20 Toy Award Winner for 2010. It just seems like more of a preschooler age toy than something for a 3rd grader. Any thoughts on either?

See you another day blogland. Hopefully one of these days I'll have a chance to dink around with my favorite toy....my camera. And then I'll have some photos to share. Cuz words is boring...and junk.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I couldn't think of a more suitable title for my week so far. I don't know where in the world the last 3 days went but we have been SO busy around here, I honestly don't even remember the last time I sat. I have even been eating standing up, wandering around, taking bites here and there. I don't even care what I'm eating, I'm probably burning it all off instantly anyway.

We are preparing for a garage sale. This Friday 4-7pm and Saturday 8am - 1pm (or later, depending): 2415 Victoria Rose Drive South Fargo (across the street from Centennial Elementary off 25th street - if anyone is interested ;) Four different households have contributed items since I was worried that I wouldn't have enough on my own. We have enough now! When I think of the countless trips to the Arc and Boys Ranch I have taken to unload bags and bags and bags of clothes and stuff that I could have sold.....oh, it makes me sad. But on the other hand I feel good that we've donated too.

We've got women's and girl's clothes, coats, shoes. Purses, purses, more purses. A few toys. Books, cook books, children's videos, games. Lots of kitchen items; small appliances (My sister is selling a really nice coffee maker and cappuccino machine for $1 each!), dishes, pots and pans. Knick knacks, bedding, curtains, blankets, jewelry. Basic garage sale stuff, I'm guessing. I don't really know since I haven't been to one in ages. And because of that, we really didn't know how to price stuff so I'm also going to guess that it's all pretty dirt cheap.

It's a lot of work to prepare for. Just cleaning out the garage so that it was in a condition to host a sale was a big job to tackle. Then there is the sorting, and price-tagging, and setting up. Don't forget keeping up with the laundry, mowing, working out, grocery runs, etc. Luckily Lizzy was nice enough to let me sleep in until almost 8:00 today. Boy did I need it!

I've been looking forward to relaxing and enjoying some "me time" while Emma and Andreas are gone, but so far that hasn't really happened. Oh well, it feels good to be productive.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


This morning is the kind of morning that makes you glad to be alive. It is perfectly still, it's Sunday - so it's quiet, the sun is shinning....it's gorgeous. I should be sitting on the patio with my coffee instead of blogging.

Yesterday was the Fargo Airsho. Every time I see the Blue Angels fly, I get goosebumps. It is one of the most amazing things I think we, as humans, are capable of. Sure flying to the moon is impressive too, but just witnessing the power, the speed, the precision - it's.....it's.....I don't even know the appropriate word. But I'll say amazing again.

The last time we were there, they had a pull up bar and I desperately wanted to try it. I was going to try it yesterday but I couldn't see one this year. Maybe I didn't look hard enough. I've been practicing my pull ups so I could crank out like 20 of those bad boys. Seriously, how many pull ups can most people do? How many pull ups can most women do? There was a rock climbing wall there too which is something I've always wanted to try also.

Of course there is the regular line up of terrible food: giant corn dogs, pizza, ice cream, beer, and the thing my inner demon screams at me to buy....the funnel cake. Of course I didn't give in, but the smell was almost intoxicating! I haven't had one in many years :( Why can't they have at least one tent with healthier options? It doesn't matter though, I didn't go there to eat.

I went out for a run last night around 8:30, the girls came with me on their bikes. They have been doing that all week and I really like that. Yesterday, I cleaned up the house: finished folding laundry, dusted, vacuumed, mowed the lawn, etc. We've been doing quite well, just the three of us. It's been peaceful and relaxing. No stress. I'm really going to miss these summer days.

I still have a lot I'd like to do in this next week. I'd still like to get a room painted or try to tear down the awful border in the living room. My sister and I are attempting a garage sale next Saturday so I have to clean out the garage and get stuff ready. NOT looking forward to it. But I really hope to unload some of the junk. I mean, good stuff we don't use ;) So, swing by and take a look at our "good stuff" next Saturday from 8 to 3!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Nothing much

Yesterday the girls and I went school shopping. I was dreading this experience but I was pleasantly surprised by how well it went.

We went to the mall first, got shoes and a couple other things. Then, on our way to Old Navy we stopped at Extreme Pita for lunch and decided as long as we were right there, why not stop in Gordman's. Boy am I glad we did! That store is fabulous. The girls found tons of stuff there and best part is, not only are the clothes cute, but they are inexpensive. We bought shirts for as little as $3 and nothing we bought was over $12! Needless to say, we never made it to Old Navy. We still need to find jeans for Hanna. That is always the hardest part. She is short and finding a good fitting jean is always difficult.

It was a fun shopping day because we didn't have to worry about time at all. It's so much more enjoyable when you can take your time and look around, not having to worry about getting home to cook supper or pick someone up somewhere or make it to an appointment. Just so relaxing! What a great day.

Hanna ran into a friend of hers from years ago, back before we moved to Denmark. We used to live on the other side of town and there was this sweet girl who Hanna used to play with. She ended up moving, so so did we. Well, she is back and they ran into each other at the store. How lucky! I am happy too because she is one of those friends every mother would want her daughter to have; sweet, good natured, great influence. They're having a sleepover tonight to catch up.

Today, I don't really have anything planned. It would be nice to just hang out at home and not do much. I suppose the time for mowing the lawn, doing the laundry and all that fun stuff is drawing near. This weekend is the AirSho and I am always really excited to go. I love watching the Blue Angels, they give me chills! We could hear them practicing yesterday and I think if we stay home today, we will get a chance to see even better.

Hope you have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

silly or slow

My children are funny creatures. They love to talk about nothing in particular and about nothing particularly interesting, at all times. Hanna is notorious for grabbing some off the wall topic out of the clear blue sky and start drilling you with questions about it, non stop, until you tell her to go away. Or, she might have decided that she needs to show you a drawing she is working on. But instead of showing it to you once she's finished, she'll give you a second by second viewing of every pencil scratch she makes, for hours on end, or until you tell her to go away. More often than not, Hanna is the one desperately seeking constant attention or approval that sadly backfires because we get tired and irritated and end up telling her to go away.

My head swims with her chattering about the shape of bird feet, why rocks are gray and how come the vein in my forehead seems to pulsate when she talks to me about birds feet and rocks. Sometimes I find myself just praying that one of these days soon I will be able to have a conversation with her that doesn't involve me wanting to chew my finger off just so I could have an excuse to leave. "Gee, Hanna, I'd love to stay and finish this interesting talk but I seem to be bleeding pretty profusely here. Guess I should go to the hospital now. But maybe Andreas wants to hear your theory on why Lizzy's butt is bigger than her head."

This morning we had an actual conversation about this. Hanna was all confused as to why Lizzy's butt looked bigger than her head. To which I replied, "Why is that so hard to understand? Your butt is bigger than your head." To which she got all offended and it ignited this long drawn out idiotic thing about butt to head ratio that lasted the length of what could have been a very pleasant walk. So often I feel like time is just wasted on trying to explain silly things that have no meaning or purpose, it actually makes my head hurt. It makes me crabby. I wonder if she does it because she has nothing she really truly wants to talk to me about, yet she wants to talk so bad that she'll just grab some random thought as it floats around her brain, bumping into cobweb covered equations and forgotten vocabulary words. Sometimes I ignore her questions completely. But I don't think that is any easier than enduring an hour long rant about what sarcasm means.

Which reminds me of being in the airport restaurant the other day. Emma and Eden were acting all goofy and wild and Andreas shushed them and told them to sit down. I said, "yes, we don't want to disturb all the people sitting by us." (we were the only ones there) Hanna said, "But there isn't anyone in here but us". I said, "I know. That was sort of the point." But she didn't get it. So I tried to explain sarcasm. She still didn't get it.

My first born has a learning disability. And even though she looks and seems like any normal teenager, behind the exterior there is a girl who was born 3 months too soon, took years to catch up physically and developmentally to kids her age, and is someone who might have trouble understanding the simplest things for the rest of her life. I'm not saying she is dumb or incapable of learning, because she does quite well in school when she applies herself.

I think it's hard to deal with having a child that has a learning disability when they seem so normal in every other way. I almost wonder if it were easier if she looked handicapped or acted out in such a way that it was obvious something wasn't quite right. Because then, people would expect her to be a little off. But when there is no tell tale sign that she might be slower than the average kid, it becomes more difficult. I sometimes feel like I should explain why she says such silly things you might expect a kindergartner say. I look at her knowing about her rough start, yet expecting her to understand everything right away and act more mature than I'd expect any 13 year old to act. I don't look at her and see anything wrong. Maybe that's a good thing. Because I don't use her disability as an excuse for her to do poorly in school. I push her harder because I know she can do it. She can learn the same as any other kid. She might have to work harder or study twice as long, but she can do it.

We have our ups and downs together. One minute we get along great and the next minute we are teenager who knows everything and mom who doesn't. Like any normal mother/daughter relationship. But what is normal? Is it average? If everyone is different, how can you even classify "normal". I dislike labels, yet I know that some are necessary. I am happy that she has been labeled with this disability because it means she gets the extra help she needs. But until she is done with school it will be a label that will define her as different, slow, special. I get sad for her if I sit and ponder it too long. Which is silly, I should be rejoicing every day at how miraculous she really is, all things considered. Odds were that she would face a multitude of serious problems and we've been lucky not to have encountered any. She can walk and talk and think and do everything you and I do that are considered "normal". And most importantly, she is here with me now, a healthy teenage girl who likes to bug her mom with hundreds of silly questions every day. That's ok with me.


Lizzy lunging at other dogs. Every. 3. Seconds.

These pictures were taken last Sunday at Maplewood State Park in Minnesota. I have just gotten around to looking at them and sizing them for the blog. No time for any editing though.

It's surprising how little time I have in the day to do all the things I want/need to do. Being a stay-at-home-mom, I'm a lot busier than a lot of people assume. And part of that is due to the fact that I am home, so there is more pressure on me to do the things that maybe I wouldn't get done if I had a job outside the home. Another reason is because my kids always want to be where I am, in the same room, as close to me as possible, talking (always talking).

That is a post in itself....for another day. Because as I type this, they are both talking, trying to get my attention, wondering what I'm doing, how long I'll be doing it and when they'll get a chance on the computer. Talking talking talking. This happens, every time I sit down at the computer. Inevitably one of them will hear my butt hit the chair from any room in the house and within seconds they are there; ready to pester. I've been calling them my pests. I've been threatening to use pesticide and have asked that they call me the exterminator.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Lizzy barks at plastic bags blowing in our yard

Gosh it's been a while. I'm starting to feel the pressure mounting to come up with something blog worthy. Still....I got nothin'.

Andreas and Emma left for Sweden today. I guess their flight from Fargo to Minneapolis was delayed and they almost missed the flight to Amsterdam. They barely made the final boarding call, but are in the air as I type this, speeding farther and farther away from me. I still can't believe that I will be without them for two weeks. Part of me says I should just enjoy my time with just my older girls while another part of me just wants to rock back and forth in a corner and cry.

Still, Hanna and Eden and I made the most of our first evening alone. We had a totally yummy pizza dinner at Old Chicago. We indulged in a New York style thin crust heavenly pie. Then I came home and went for a run. The weather was perfect for running tonight and I enjoyed myself so much. I showered and caught the end of Beauty and the Beast with my girls and now I am in my bed, blogging...listening to the dog bark at who knows what. And watching fireworks. I don't know what they are all about but I can see them perfectly from my bedroom window. Big beautiful bursts of color - it's like the 4th of July all over again.

I'm also thinking about tomorrow morning. Dreading is maybe a better word. Andreas won't be here to let the dog out when she starts barking and clawing at the door come 5:30am. Can't say I am excited about that. But one thing I can be excited about is not having to adhere to any sort of schedule whatsoever for the next two weeks. I can eat cereal for supper at 4pm if I want. I can crank iTunes favorites that Andreas seriously dislikes. I can wear pjs and eat candy bars all day. Ok, I probably won't do that, but it sure does sound like fun. Actually, I have thought about painting the basement. Not sure if I seriously want to take on that project on my own but if I get bored enough, I just might. I have also agreed to have a garage sale with my sister the weekend before Andreas gets back. What was I thinking?

And so the question is....now what? I'm sort of tired (I usually am this time of night) but yet I want to do something. Maybe I'll Netflix something.

Now that we've finished all the episodes of Arrested Development, I suppose I could watch one of the dvds I've had for about 2 months. Have you seen Arrested Development? All the characters are so delightfully quirky in their own way. I have a hard time deciding which one is my favorite. Maybe Buster. Or Gob. I was sort of bummed that there weren't more seasons of that show filmed because it's pretty darn funny. I've also got an assignment from Andreas - I must watch the first 3 episodes of The Tick. I saw the first 5 or so minutes of the pilot the other day, "Java devil, you are now my bitch!" -haha.

Ok, that's all I have for now. I promise next time I will have something interesting. Pictures, a funny story, something....