Thursday, December 1, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I know that I am stealing this from about a dozen blogs but I really am feeling very thankful lately and I need to share.

1.  I am thankful that I realized that when I typed my title I didn't put the 'r' in Thursday.  How stupid would I have looked entitling this post Thankful Thusday.  Yeah.

2.  I am so very thankful that I have an artistic daughter.  But mostly that she is a very giving generous daughter.  She painted this picture and made me scan right away so that she could give it to one of her favorite teachers who is Italian.  

I really hope he doesn't think that WE think that all Italians eat pasta, drink wine, and are grossly overweight.  It's the thought that counts...right?

3.  I am thankful for this...
  It makes me smile each and every time I see it.

4.  I am ESPECIALLY thankful for these two.
They also make me smile each time I see them.  They saw me taking the picture of the tree and begged for me to take one of them.  It could be that they were both doing homework and wanted any excuse to put the pencil down, but I would like to think that it is because they just LOVE being in pictures.  Yeah...that's it.

5.  I am thankful for my blog friends who care about me even when I disappear for a few weeks.  I am trying to be better.

6.  I am thankful for good health and a great doctor who tests just one more thing...just to be sure.

7.  I am thankful for an amazing husband who I can't imagine life without.

8.  I am thankful for cheesy (but true) thankful statements.

More Later

- A Ro

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Ro Who? Hodgepodge

Yes, it is I, the mysterious and elusive A Ro back to participate in Joyce's Wednesday Hodgepodge.   I write this before I actually look at the questions so I am also brave.

Here goes nothing:

1. Do you send Christmas cards? If so about how many will you send this year? How do you display the cards you receive? Or don't you? (gasp!)
Yikes!! I have to get on this...
Yes I send Christmas cards and I do the picture cards.  I am very excited because this year my family is much larger, and I get to include all of us in some way or another on that card.  I'll be sure to post it when it is finished.
I have a garland on my banister that I put the cards on.  I usually leave the picture ones up all year, in some way or another.  They make me happy all year 'round. 

2. When do kids become adults? 
Well my son, when he was younger, told my sister that she wasn't an adult until she got married.  When she got married he didn't think she was an adult until she had a that she has a baby maybe he will finally admit that his cool Aunt Kate is an adult.  

It is all relative.

3. Does your 'beauty regimen' change with the seasons?
Nah...wash face in shower, sometimes moisturize, only wear make-up when I absolutely have to.  My climate is really the same all yearlong (living in CA) so I just keep it the same...and very simple!!

4. What's something you like to eat that might cause another person to turn up their nose?
I love raw sushi??  Other than that I am usually the one turning up my nose at crazy delicacies.

5. Gloves or mittens?
I love mittens...everything about them, but mostly I love them because when I wear them more than likely I am in Iowa.
6. What's the longest queue you've ever been in? Was it worth it? Queue=line but doesn't queue sound nicer?
Rich and I did Black Friday, once (and that was one time too many).  The queue was long, but the problem was that the queue we were in was the wrong queue.  Yeah that sucks.  We did get an i pod touch very cheap with a gift card bonus, so I guess it was worth it.  And yes the word queue is very sophisticated!!

7. Besides Christmas, what is one thing you are looking forward to in the month of December?
hmmmm  Going to Iowa to see my family is sorta related to Christmas but I am SO looking forward to it too.  We all just love being at my mom's house.

8. In Summary:  
OK...gotta get going on that Christmas card so...Shutterfly here I come.  I hope that I never become an adult because I  will have to stop turning my nose up at yucky food, start worrying about my beauty regimen, and start looking forward to Black Friday.  But most of all I better hunt down those mittens because, IOWA HERE I COME!!!

More Later

- A Ro

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I love this time of the year.  Really from Halloween through New Year's Day makes me oh so very happy.  I love everything about it.  With the exception of having a horrible cold a few weeks ago the past weeks have not let me down. 
I have had many beverages from the Starbucks holiday cups

Got to work with some wonderful kids (especially Woodstock) in our Middle School musical.

Got to watch Bella serve bread to needy people at Manna house.

Had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Complete with everyone's favorite...Scalloped Pineapple.

And shared it with two very special girls (and a few camera shy guys).

And to top it off I got a very sweet card from Sarah and it really brought a tear to my eye.  Especially thinking back to the Thanksgivings without her in our lives.  I really took it all in and was very thankful of all my blessings this year.

My Thanksgiving weekend ended with an ink pen in the dryer and a very special accidentally adorned pancake...

...I choose to dwell on the pancake.

More Later

- A Ro 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Purge

OK people....this isn't going to be pretty.  I have been knee deep in middle schoolers due to tech week for our middle school musical.  However, that doesn't mean that life in the A Ro household has stood still, oh no, life keeps on trucking with or with sleep or sanity.

So this is just a purge of some of the hot topics around here lately.  No wit, no nonsense, no glamour just the facts ma'am.

Sarah wanted to go to the haunted house down the street.  As you know, unless Chevy Chase  is running a haunted house I am not going in.  BUT I love a good family outing so decided that I would just walk down with them and wait outside.  Little did I know that a guy with a chainsaw would come out to "warm the crowd up" before they went inside.  Well I made the big mistake of looking completely freaked out, which I was, and started to walk, very quickly, away.  Yeah, you all know what happened next...he started following me.  I am telling you people the rage grew within me and I almost punched his lights out. 

note to is just pretend.

My daughter is Woodstock in the aforementioned middle school musical.  She is second from the left in the front with all of her Beagle Scout birds, oh my stinkin' heart.

Andrew met a girl last summer at summer camp and, unfortunately, she lives about 10 hours away.  However, her mom and I love our kids and we arranged for her to fly down for a weekend.  She is lovely, smart, kind, funny, athletic, mature, and absolutely wonderful.  They both are just so perfect together.  He also passed his driving test the morning she came, so it was an all around great weekend.

Yes, Halloween came last night in the midst of it all, but look at these cute girls.  They crack me up!!

My first, failed, attempt at taking our picture during trick or treating...

Much better...look how handsome he is!!
Nerds in action.

The loot.  We had so much fun. 

And finally....

My favorite time of the year has arrived.


More Later

A Ro

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween I Mean BIRTHDAY Ryan!!!

Yes my brother was born on Halloween and I would like to say that it suits him, but it really doesn't.  He is a very non spooky guy, but he does love to have fun so maybe it suits him...just a little.

So once again you are subjected to a very bad acrostic poem, but it is the last one...for October :)

Ryan is a fun guy and always a real treat.

You all know he has a wonderful wife which makes him complete.

And a fabulous family you just can't beat.

Now thankfully they don't rely on his fishing skills to eat.

I love you little brother, have a Happy Birthday and a Happy Halloween!!

More Later

A Ro

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Happy Birthday JoJo!!

I've got good news and bad news. 

Here is the bad news first...

It is time for another very bad acrostic poem.

The good news...

It is for my very adorable nephew JoJo which means cute pictures to follow!!

   Joseph Gregory, my nephew, is five years old.
and Obviously he always does what he is told.
      So very cute with eyes that just look like trouble.
   Especially when Abby is near the cuteness just doubles.
   People say he is his dad at least at first glance
but His mama certainly taught him how to sing and dance

We love you JoJo!! Have a happy day.

More Later

A Ro

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Happy Birthday Papa!!

I told you that October would be filled with very bad acrostic poems to celebrate various is one to celebrate my step-dad John's birthday.  He is known as Grandpa John to my kids, however, I don't think anyone wants to see what I come up with as a poem with 11 letters.  Thankfully all the other grand kids call him Papa a much more do-able poem for this non-poet.

I hope you have a happy day Papa!!

Papa brings to all a tremendous amount of joy.

And especially to this once little boy.

a Perfect caregiver and wonderful grand-dad

And just be assured, Grandpa Mike would be so glad.

Happy Birthday Papa, we love you!!

More Later


Monday, October 10, 2011

Weekend Blur

Oh my goodness, Monday already???  Where does the time go?  This weekend, however, many many minutes were enjoyed and appreciated, so it wasn't AS bad as usual.  Although getting my butt out of bed this morning was rough especially knowing Rich had the day off today...Columbus Day...don't even get me started on that one.

Friday was a very relaxing day.  Rich had the day off so I came home to a squeeky clean house and baseball on TV so Rich and I cuddled up and even though I love baseball I very quickly fell asleep and slept for about an hour.  Oh my goodness did that feel SO good.  Got up and managed to sleepily get a wonderful dinner on the table.  We had my kids this weekend so it was so nice to have everyone around the dinner table.  Make your own pizzas are always a hit with these kiddos.  More baseball (which included watching my Phillies, grocery lists, and happy girls because they both were home, rounded out our Friday night. 

Saturday was our usual pancake breakfast followed by bribing the girls to not go to the grocery stores with us so Rich and I could have some quality alone time.  We sat at Starbucks and stolled the aisles hand in hand.  Hey...we get that quality time when we can these days.

We grilled, had a fire pit, and roasted some marshmallows Saturday night and decided to try out a new church the next day.  We have been going to a few here and there to try to find the right one and we had another one on our list so we decided to give it a try Sunday morning. 

So Sunday morning Justin and Andrew (of course) didn't want to join us so Rich and I and the girls went.  It was a contemporary service complete with a band and singers.  Isabella ended up with a friend there so they went off to Sunday School.  She really loved it, and I did too.  It was a very nice way to start our Sunday.  Of course, Sunday continued with laundry, baking, and homework.

Really a very boring weekend...

...aren't those the best???

More Later

A Ro

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Thankful Thursday

A couple of the blogs I follow do a Thankful Thursday post, so I am not exactly sure who to credit, but I thought I'd follow suit this week.

So here goes:

1.  I am so very thankful that the temps today are in the 70's.  I feel like I pay way to much money to live in California for the temps to be anything BUT 70's but today I am getting my money's worth and I love it.

2.  I am thankful today that I have this amazing Sixth Grade Chorus.  There are some really great voices and enough silly boys to keep things interesting.  Also my Bella is in there and she is quite the singer. 

3.  I am thankful that I remembered enough of my middle school science classes to be able to help Bella study for her minerals and rocks test.  However, it was a little discouraging to realize that as a parent we really start over again and learn everything one (or two) more times.  Except after last night and the studying of Spanish I am regretting the decision to take French. 

4.  I am so thankful to be Sarah's step mom.  She is really showing the love.  Her Dad and I got a nice letter from her as part of an English assignment and it nearly brought me to tears.  She told us how thankful she is to be here and how much she loves us...awww.  Then she posted a picture of the two of us on her Facebook page and the caption told me how much she appreciated all I did for her this summer and  how much she loves me as a step mom.  Coming full circle is a very nice thing.

5.  Rich has Friday and Monday off!!!  This means that I might actually get a relaxing weekend as he usually gets a lot of stuff done (if he has a list) so I can sit on the couch and eat bon bons all weekend.  Well at least dairy free bon bons.

6.  The Bug asked me in a comment how I am going to be getting protein and iron on my new semi vegan diet.  So I thought I'd answer her in this section and be thankful for the internet which is providing me with a plethora of information about getting the nutrients I need.  This site for vegetarians with a special section for vegans goes into great detail about all the nutrients.  And I am finding out SO much information that makes me OK with going this route.  The four areas of concern for vegans are calcium, B12, iron, and protein and the only one that I found that cannot be replaced with plants is B12 so I take a supplement.  I am planning to start incorporating some vegan recipes on my blog and some more information about it.  Don't worry I won't get my soapbox out.

7.  I am thankful that in about 10 minutes a big group of my middle school singers will join me for lunch in my room for our Day 6 Lunch Bunch. 

Yikes...gotta go.

More Later

A Ro

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Cuddle on Up With the Hodgepodge

Since it is raining here and in the 60's (about 30 degrees cooler than yesterday) I decided it is the perfect day to join the Hodgepodge over at Joyce's.  So head on over and join us.

1. What's your favorite meal to serve on a chilly autumn evening?
My Dad's chili.  I know that chili is such a cop out chilly autumn evening dinner, but since my dad passed away it always makes me think of him and it really warms me up, body and soul.  Here is the recipe, and a post about it.

2. Are you a creature of habit? Explain.
Hmmmmm....I think I am a creature of habit as I like the routines in my life, having said that I really am a very flexible roll with the flow kind of girl when my routines are shaken up. 

3. What food product (no longer readily available) do you remember and miss from days gone by?
Wow...I see that this Hodgepodge isn't going to be one of those whip off kind, I'm gonna have to think. OK I think I got one. I miss Happy Joe's taco pizza.  I am not even sure that there is a Happy Joes still in my home town, but I LOVED their taco pizza. 

4. What's something you've lost that you've never been able to find? Any theories as to what happened?
My mind...yeah no theories yet.

5. Zoo~circus~ carnival...your favorite?
Oh my goodness.  I would have to say zoo.  I hate the circus for so many reasons.  I don't like to see animals doing stupid tricks, I don't like to see death defying acts, I  mean c'mon they are death defying because someone COULD die doing it, do you REALLY want to see that.  As I child I hated clowns and really as an adult that has a HUGE aversion to scary horror movies I still hate clowns.  So the circus has NOTHING to offer me.  And carnivals...don't get me started on the entire watch a crew of people set up a ride in about an hour and assure me it's safe, I think not.  Then there are all those steal your money games for which you win a cheesy prize that has to find a home in your already cramped house only to have to steal it away from behind your kids back to give to Good Will and feign stupidity when said kid asks where it went.

So zoo it is.

6. What song makes you feel instantly happy?
Wow this is another hard one...geez Joyce.  I am a music teacher so songs are such a big part of my life.  The first song that comes to mind is the song Gettin' Jiggy With It by Will Smith.  I love this song because my quiet little sister knew every word and turned into Will Smith everytime it came on.  So it reminds me of a very happy time in my life.  Also any Hewy Lewis and the News song brings me back to dating Rich in high school so those are always a good smile bringer.

I just know that when I visit other blogs I'm gonna say..."oh yeah, I forgot about THAT song"

7. To what extent are you an argumentative person?
I have to say that when I think I am right (think being the operative word) I will argue to the death.  I would have been a good lawyer execpt for the law school part.  I will, however, admit when I am wrong, but only when I realize I am wrong and not a minute before.  But usually I am never wrong...

Right honey??

8. In summary:
The best day ever would be Happy Joe's pizza for lunch with my sister Kate and she is chanelling Will Smith.  We then go eat Grandpa Mike's chili for dinner after a trip to the zoo.  Then miraculously we find my mind. That would be the perfect day...and you know I'm right.

More Later

A Ro

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

So Dead to Me

Mc Donalds you are dead to me.

Well, actually you were dead to me after I watched the movie Super Size Me and realized that your oh so yummy french fries would be the only thing the cockroaches would be eating after a nuclear war, that and the one pickle and three freeze dried onions on my hamburger.

Truthfully there are so many other reasons

but I digress.

My son still partakes of the mass produced hamburgers and did so after our baseball game on Sunday in a mad rush to get him to his orchestra practice.

Wow that sentance made it seem that I have a very well rounded son.

Again, I digress.

So I had about a 90 minute drive ahead of me so I decided that I would order a Diet Coke for the road and the more I thought about that fountain drink Diet Coke the more I wanted it.

Did you ever notice how much better a fountain drink soda tastes than out of a can or bottle?

I know, I know...just get on with it.

So we drive up Andrew orders his food which consists of two double cheeseburgers a medium fry and a medium Coke, and I ordered a medium Diet Coke. 

I wonder since it is a double cheeseburger if it has two pickles and three freeze dried onions??


Well the guy taking my order decided to try super size me into buying  the large combo for ONLY $.30 more cents, and when I politely declined he told me that for only $.30 more I would get 4 Monopoly game pieces. 

I suddenly wondered if this man was getting a commission on my super sizing and the $.30 and almost asked that question and really at that point I would have paid it to get on with it so I could get my hands on that Diet Coke a couple of seconds faster.

So we pull around and the nice lady hands me two medium drinks neither on punched "diet".  So I ask her which one is the diet and she said that the first one she handed me was the diet. 

I know that at this point you can probably guess where this story is headed.

We pull away and continue on our journey of a million miles and I take a sip of the coveted Diet Coke to realize that the one she told me was diet was in fact NOT.

Oh...I laughed...she must have meant the FIRST one she handed me becuase surely SHE would know that one of them was diet because she used that fancy schmancy machine to fill those cups.

However, I couldn't be more wrong.  The Diet Coke which was now crack to me was not Diet but REGULAR!!!!  Both flipping drinks were regular COKE.

Now my first reaction after the cussing was that she blatently lied to me but I really should have blamed myself for not checking before we left the drive through considering my accuracy rate with getting the right order at drive throughs is about .05%

Then I realized it was the cold hard fact that I shouldn't be putting that crap into my body slapping me in the face.  To that I say...well good, because I didn't.

So who has the last laugh now McDonalds??? do.

More Later

A- Ro

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Weekend Blur

First I need to give you some I-haven't-been-a-very-good-blogger-and-you-need-some-info background information.  So Rich and I have decided to become basically vegan vegetarians.  We have done this for three reasons: 1. Rich watched the movie Forks Over Knives and 2. I was reading the book Food Rules by Michael Pollan which caused me to 3. remember when I was diagnosed with cancer many years ago I researched cancer fighting diets and ALL of them were vegan.  So long story short...I'd like to live to be at least 90 and cancer and heart disease runs rampant in my family so this is what I am going to try for now.  I am not going completely vegan as my philosophy is eating whole foods and to to eat mostly a plant based diet and add fish every now and then.

SOOOO Friday night Rich and I decided to cash in on one of my teacher gifts.  It was a gift card to a fancy schmancy...wait for it...steakhouse!!!  So I called ahead and told the nice, young, and I am sure very, er... pretty hostess my explanation of being a vegetarian and questions of items on their menu that I could eat, and she preceded to tell me that they had plenty of chicken dishes.  OK...maybe she thought I said that I was a veterinarian.

We had a lovely dinner at the bar complete with a very good glass of Merlot, ahi tuna burgers (our fish for the week) and mushroom ravioli.  We really enjoyed each others company and the atmosphere was really nice.  We then went and saw Moneyball.  What a great movie.  I really loved it.  I am smiling right now thinking about our evening, just really nice. 

Saturday was a day that really just went by in a blur.  A birthday party, a driving lesson, grocery shopping, and finally a nice relaxing fire in the fire pit.  When I finally sat down at the fire I couldn't believe that Saturday was over.  It was such a blur that I thought it was October 2nd and wished my niece a happy birthday but her birthday wasn't until Sunday because Saturday was October 1st.  She will catch on pretty quickly that her Aunt Amy is too busy and muddled for her own good.

Sunday was our chore, baking, laundry, and baseball day.  I made chocolate chip cookies for lunches, my homemade hummus, and a crock pot full of chili to have when we got home from baseball.  We did all the laundry and had so much fun with our family folding event.  We all stand around our bed and fold clothes together, it usually ends up in some sort of clothes fight and a lot of laughter.  Sarah and Bella did their chores and for some reason Sarah always ends up going above and beyond her chores.  She completely cleaned and organized their room, and vacuumed the entire upstairs.  Andrew pitched an amazing 3 innings with 8 strikeouts, and although it was kinda warm we had a lovely afternoon at the ballpark.

So now I look forward to the beginning of this next week and I am pretty sure it will also go by in a great big blur.

More Later

A Ro

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Abby!!

Yes, the fall is a VERY busy month for birthdays in my family, so you'll have to forgive all of my VERY bad acrostic poems.

This one is celebrating my niece Abby's second birthday, so thankfully she is too young to really appreciate how bad of a poet I am...phew.

Here goes:
Abby is my niece and oh so very sweet
Being around her is such a special treat
 I can't believe she is already two
Gosh, it seems just yesterday she was brand new
 she's Amazing, smart, cute, and fun, I've always said
I get sad when I can't see her and get pictures instead
 Luckily, she is my very favorite little red head

I love and miss you Abby!!!

More Later

A Ro 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Happy Birthday MICHELLE!!!

Today is my sister-in-law's birthday and I wanted to do another very bad acrostic poem in celebration.

Michelle please forgive my poetry skills and know it comes from the heart!!

My sister-in-law Michelle is wonderful and oh so sweet.
In my opnion to be around her is such a big treat.
Cheerful and kind describe her to a T.
Her family, I'm sure, would totally agree.
 Every one of her nephews and neices...
Love her to bits and pieces.

Love for his mama Jo Jo cannot hide.
Even though we have no idea where he gets his silly side.

Happy Birthday Michelle!!  We miss you and love you oh so much!!

More Later (hopefully)

A Ro