Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Going Green

You know, the only bad thing about going green is the guilt. Could I be doing more? Once your eyes are open to analyze everything you do, you start to ask, is there another way to do this? Can it be composted, recycled, done differently to reduce energy or water? I find myself getting anxious sometimes. So for all my green buddies, here is a list of some little (and weird) things I to save the world a little bit at a time.

1. You know you have gone green when you and a few of your green friends dig trash out of a public park trashcan so you can take it home to recycle it. The same goes for when you are traveling and you save your trash so you can recycle it when you get home.

2. You know you have gone green when you take home rotten veggies, etc. from a friends house to compost at yours because they were going to throw it out anyway.

3. You know you have gone green when you convince, is subtle and not so subtle ways, your friends to compost and grow a garden.

4. You know you have gone green when you buy tons or reusable cloth bags from Fry's and take them to whatever store you go to.

5. You know you have gone green when you recycle the plastic bags you do get (when you rush and forget the cloth ones in the trunk). I may be green, but I am definitely not perfect. LOL

6. You know you have gone green when you hang dry almost all of your clothes from a shower rod put up between your laundry room and your house. (I need a clothes line.)

7. You know you have gone green when you only wash laundry before 12 and after 7, even though you are not on the peak plan, to save energy.

8. You know you have gone green when you buy a majority of big purchases and clothes second hand.

9. You know you have gone green when you cloth diaper.

10. You know you have gone green when you use plastic containers for veggies (and other stuff) in the fridge instead of baggies.

11. You know you have gone green when you use real plates for 99% of your meals instead of the good 'ol paper ones.

12. You know you have gone green when you compose your hair.

13. You know you have gone green when you take cups of water left over the night and pour them on houseplants, in the compost bin, in the garden, and sometimes drink it (eww, definitely a last resort) instead of pouring it down the drain.

14. You know you have gone green when you catch yourself hunched over in the shower to washer your hair in the cold water that most people let go down the drain while they wait for it to heat up. You also turn the water on to get wet, turn it off while you get all soapy, and then turn it on to rinse...taking you approximately 5 miuntes.

15. You know you have gone green when you use the backside of paper before throwing it away. As well as make your children draw on both sides of the paper before getting a new one.

16. You know you have gone green when you freeze leftovers instead of letting them rot away in the fridge.

17. You know you have gone green when you put your son's diaper liners (rice paper ones) in the compost after washing them in fragrance and color free detergent (with vinegar, of course!)

18. You know you have gone green when you compost your shredded bills, etc.

19. You know you have gone green when you save sunflower seed shells in a cup as you eat them and then take them out and dump them in your compost.

20. You know you have gone green when you teach your kids to wash their hands by: a) adding soap to hands, b) turning the water on to get their hands wet, c) turning the water off, d) wash hands, e) then turing on the water to rinse. You realize you did a good job when you watch other little kids wash their hands with the water on the whole time.

21. You know you have gone green when you can't stop thinking of other things to add to your list.

There *sigh*. Making a list eases the guilt. Feel free to share the little and weird things you do to help conserve. It will make you feel good, and give me more ideas!

Under Pressure

For what seems like forever we have had crappy water pressure in the kitchen. I couldn't really quite place when it all started. I removed the nozzle and cleaned it out. Nothing seemed to help. I was resigned to the fact that it will always take me at least an hour to do the dishes. My hot water was nothing more than a trickle...almost like when you kids leave the water on after washing their hands. I can tell you how much water they waste, because I have stood there waiting for my sink to fill up to do the dishes. Those few minutes between them washing hands and me finding the water trickling....hmm, really not that much water...but the conservationist I am, it still is.

Yes, to make my life easier I have even at one point, go ahead and laugh, put water in the microwave to get it hot again....don't want to waste water. By the time I fill 'er up, the water is luke warm again.

But, as of 12 am this morning, I have water pressure!!! My husband, whom I love dearly, started the lovely project at 10 pm. I am so excited. It is like a late birthday present. He was under the sink pulling out all the hoses and stuff. A real plumber that man is.

I guess, because he made my day, I will forgive him for leaving the checkbook in his pants, that got washed this morning, that has left a white film over all the clothes. LOL

Monday, March 17, 2008

Prince Charming

Today Ember and I decided to play ponies, which included two miniature princess figurines as well. Ember was Snow White and I got to be Belle.

E: Lets go to the Royal Ball.
M: Ok
E: So we can dance with the princes.
M: Ok, let's go to the ball...but you don't have any princes.
E: (excitedly) I know! Lets pretend that Jaxen's superheroes are the princes. Not the bad guys though.

So off she runs to Jaxen's room and comes back with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Belle and Snow White danced the night away with their handsome, crime fighting, green princes. That is, until, the evil puppy dog jumped out and tried to steal the princesses away. Luckily, the righteous turtle princes saved the day and conquered the evil puppy villian. The TMNT are treated to pizza, their favorite of course, while we go to pick up Jaxen.

To be continued...

(Lucky for me, Jaxen will take over.)

Making amends

He was a cute bird, lets see if he falls for it he likes it. The kids would sure love it if he did! (Ok, I would too!) Yes, it has been a productive morning.

We thought about renting out a room...

Sadly, I had to kick our roommate out, seeing as how I didn't get a deposit or signed contract.

Long story short, as I was pulling into the drive from dropping of Jaxen at school I noticed a bird hovering by the side of our laundry room. After I got out of the van it abruptly flew away. I went over to investigate. I saw a hole but thought, nah, that goes right into the laundry room right? It wouldn't want to build in there..but the "evidence" was overwhelming.


The hole

Curious, I go and check. I move over some blankets stored plastic covers to take look at where the hole would be. What do you know?! Lo and behold there is the "starts" of a nest. I guess the blankets stacked made a cozy wall and the nest wasn't directly visable.

I wanted to take a picture of the bird, but it when it came back a little later to keep building it looked a little bothered that I had closed up the hole, and didn't stay long for a photo shot. It was a pretty bird, black with green hues.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Just Kickin' It

Today was Jaxen and Ember's first soccer game. Granted, our team doesn't have a coach and we haven't practiced, but why not? We got a phone call late yesterday afternoon to tell us about the game. Ember didn't play much by choice, she preferred to be attached to my leg the whole game. Maybe after a few practices she might be a little more inclined to want to play. Jaxen did really good at getting in front of the ball. I guess I hadn't thought about how 3-5 year olds would play. I think they spent more time throwing the ball in and kicking it in because it was always going out of bounds.

They looked so cute. There were a couple of crying spells on the other team and a little boy that is quite the aggressor on our team. The boy kicked in...to himself. He threw in...to himself. Who said there is no I in team?

When all was said and done...we won! It was a score of 1 to 0. It came down to the second half of the game.

Jaxen and Ember in their soccer uniforms.

Jaxen and Ember showing off their kicks!

Friday, March 14, 2008

The right way to clean a spatula!

The ward BBQ was a bunch of fun. I managed to get a few good pictures in. Minus the sore jaw from face planting into the grass, it was good times! It was nice to lounge around and talk to everyone. It seems like the weeks fly by and the only time I get to talk to some people is in between classes on Sunday.

This is, of course, the only right way to clean a spatula.

Who needs a cup?! Not me!

My boys! I really like the way this picture came out. I should of had Shaun take one of me and Ember with her "Cholobird" hair style, as my SIL so eloquently calls it. Good times.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

How much do you love me?

I woke Ember up from her nap and as we lay there, this is the conversation.

M: (playfully) Do you love me?
E: Yeah.
M: How much? A little or alot?
E: Alot.
M: How much is alot?
E: (without hesitation) 25 cents...or maybe 5.

I asked Jaxen the same question to be fair. Hopefully I am worth more than a quarter to one of my children.

M: Do you love me?
J: Yeah.
M: How much? A little or alot?
J: Alot!
M: How much is alot?
J: A jillion.

Hmm, survey time...ask you kids the same question and tell me what they say!

Which one?! I can't decide...so... I choose all of them!

As we got home today I tell Ember to take off her shoes. She comes back into the living room at running speed and jumps on my lap. I happen to look down and notice her socks for the first time today. Hmm, that's weird. I start peeling off layers...of socks. She had 3 socks on her right foot, all different colors and styles, of course, and 2 socks on her left foot. No two socks are the same.

Apparently, the multiple sock fashion statement is back...it originally hit when I was in fourth grade. (Come on, you know you did it!) I remember being one of the only girls who wasn't allowed to wear two pairs of socks to school. *frown*

So, I have to wash them all. The top layer receiving the dirt from the trampoline outing, and the bottom layer receiving the stench from her sweaty feet. I wonder why they are sweaty?! The middle sock on the right foot might as well join it's friends in the washer. There is a sock hop in the washer, come one come all. Evidently new socks (she just got new ones) are so tempting that choosing just one pair was too difficult a task for her three year old mind to wrap around.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

My little priesthood holder in training

Yesterday Ember decided to give Owen the customary knock on the head with whatever she had in her hand...this time it was a water bottle. (Sisterly love) So, as I am brushing Jaxen's teeth, I hear Owen start to cry. I walk in, look at her, guilty face with that beautiful little smile. Not going to work on me little girl. I ask her what she did. Nothing, of course, was the reply. For some reason I don't buy that! I put her in time out and pick up Owen. I take him with me into the bathroom and set him down so he can watch me brush Jaxen's teeth. I notice a little red spot on Owen's head.

Ember is still crying in time out. I go to talk to her and ask her what she did that wasn't nice. You know the routine. I let her out and make my way back into the bathroom to find Jaxen leaning over Owen with is hands on his forehead.

I asked him what he is doing. He looks up and takes a minute to think of what I want to hear. I repeated, what are you doing? I'm not mad. He then says I was saying a prayer for Owen.

It was the neatest thing to see. For that brief moment, I pictured him as a young man with the Priesthood. It makes me feel good knowing that he knows where to turn for help and is so readily open to it. He didn't even have to "think" about it.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

I hate to love you...

I know, who would have thought that I was involved with anyone else but my husband? I have a love/hate relationship with ... the Girl Scouts.

I swear one time a year they come outta the woodwork selling cookies in front of almost every store. This year they have branched out from the usual Walmart and Fry's locations and opened up shop in front of Blockbuster. For those of you ASU Alumni, you can find at least one or two troops in the depths of campus. You also find out co-workers have children you didn't know about, when they bring in that form.

No, it's not like the good 'ol days where you walked door to door and annoy every person in your neighborhood with your little speech about the cookies. I know there was a reason we were selling those things? You sent the order form in for cookies and made the special deliveries upon their arrival. Now, you skip right to the chase, buy a ton up front and sell them in front of stores. I swear some of these girls have to be ditching school to sell them. I have even seen just the parents out selling them. Go Parent Scouts.

Girl Scout Promise
On my honor, I will try
To serve as many cookies as I can To serve God and my country
To feed help people at all times,
And to sell as many over priced, but oh-so-delicious cookies as I can live by the Girl Scout Law.

I sat pondering last night the cost of these oh-so-delicious cookies. They are now $4 a box. One of my favorites, the Samoas, contain 15 cookies in that beautiful purple box. My friends, that is .27 cents a cookie! What?! I give my kids tickets (reward system) that are worth .25 cents. Shaun was nice enough to give Jaxen and Ember one of his cookies last night (the peanut butter ones).

*Clearing throat* That will not be happening with my cookies. I love my kids, but these cookies are expensive and I am selfish, at least when it comes to these. I even ration them out to myself! At least I bought a box of Thin Mints, a true value at .11 cents a cookie. Yum.

I can rant all I want...but I will always buy Girl Scout cookies. Why? Because I was a Girl Scout myself (I was even a Daisy and a Brownie...do they still do that?). Plus those darn little Scouts are so cute in their little green vests. My mom was my troop leader, not sure what possessed her to sign up for that, but I am grateful she did. I know she has a box somewhere in her attic full of my little blue Daisy vest, my brownie sash, and my girl scout uniform complete with all the badges you could ask for. I even took school pictures in my brownie uniform.

Ahh those were the good old days. I might, however, have to draw the line when they hit $5 a box. *sigh* Then again, it is a once a year tradition...just might have to limit the number of boxes I buy. *frown*