29 November 2011

Random Thoughts

Not a whole lot going on right now.  Gearing up for a 3 hour drive to Columbus, OH on Thursday for a Cardiology appointment with the new doctors.  Wish they weren't that far away but I've been told they are some of the best around and when there are no specialists in the area that take your insurance, you have to go where you can, even if it's 3 hours away.

Thanksgiving was very good.  My mom is a wonderful cook and did a fabulous job feeding her kids and grandkids.  I am so thankful that she is in my life not only because she still takes care of me, but because she has taught me how to cook and I'm figuring I may be doing Thanksgiving at my house next year for everyone.  I did make the chocolate bourbon pecan pie that my family, especially my sister loves so much.    Good grief was it good.  We finished it off last night.

I did do some shopping online Thursday night to get in on some early Black Friday deals and did some shopping on Friday as well.  My nieces L & B both had their birthdays on Saturday - sisters born exactly 2 yrs to the day apart.  I had to get them their birthday gifts.  I didn't purposefully wait until the last minute, I just had way too much going on over the past few weeks.  They loved their gifts which I'm glad and now I need to worry about Christmas gifts.  I've got Emi finished and Eriks has one more gift that needs to be bought for him.  All but 1 of my nieces has been bought for.  When my in-laws drove back to TX on Sunday, I sent back with them their gifts as well as our nephew M's gift.  I still have to buy for Lane's sister, Marla but she's so hard to buy for because she has what she needs and says she'll appreciate whatever she gets.  I'm going to have to bug her for ideas.  Lane is another person that I'm going to have a terribly difficult time buying for.  He has pretty much everything he wants or needs other than Starbucks gift cards and gift cards to buy stuff for his e-readers.  He has both the Kindle and the Nook.  I bought him the Kindle for Christmas last year and he won the Nook in a raffle this fall.  I'm just glad I've made a good dent in my shopping.

Not much else has been going on with us.  Lane is studying for finals and going back and forth between, "I can handle this," and panic, "I'm never going to learn and remember it all before the exams!"  His first final is next Monday.  On the bright side, he is looking forward to them being over with so that he has a month to relax before Spring semester starts.

On that note, I'm going to share a video I took of Emi with her cousin L at my mom's house last Wednesday when we went over there to hang out so Lane could have some quiet study time in the house.  The girls has a blast!  It's only about a minute long but enjoy it anyway!

15 November 2011

I Am NOT Super Woman

But gawd how I wish I was.  You know how they say you are your own worst critic?  They're right. I'm having a hard time accepting that I can't do it all.  I blame my mother for this (sorry mom).  Not only did my mom work a full-time job, she took care of the house, the laundry, the cooking, the yard work and us kids.  And she rocked it!  In my opinion at least.  She wasn't always in the best of moods at the end of the day.  Being an inner-city school teacher and all - dealing with parents who sent their kids to school because it was the law but cared less if they actually got an education and kids who knew this.  Granted there were a handful of kids she had through her teaching career who were good students, hard workers and were taught to treat others with kindness and respect, but this was not the majority.  I'm getting off track here.  She still managed to try and muster enough patience with us to help us with homework we couldn't figure out on our own while making dinner.

I'm very much overwhelmed, overworked, overtired and under appreciated right now.  Not to mention I've been sick for almost 2 months and because of my responsibilities, I've really put taking care of myself on the back-burner.  Some of what I think I'm dealing with is now allergies not the sickness I had.  Moving back to Indiana there's something in the air my system just doesn't like.  Less than 2 weeks ago I started a 2nd round of antibiotics to get rid of the gunk that wouldn't go away with the 1st round and I ended up getting pink eye to boot.  It's been lots of fun.  Thankfully, I'm the only one dealing with it.  Emi has had a runny nose off and on too but so have all the kids in her class and she's never complained that she feels bad.  I'd like love to get over this and feel like myself again.  I think that would drastically help because I'd have the energy I'd need to get most of my stuff done.  It doesn't help that my 3 kids (it includes the hubby) aren't helping any by leaving their stuff all over the house no matter how often I ask them nicely to pick up after themselves.  So then my work becomes double.

I know Lane is doing what's best for our family but how can part of me not be jealous?  I know it's not all fun and games.  There's a lot of hard work he's putting in on a daily basis, but it's been a passion and fascination for over 4 yrs ago.  He doesn't even stop talking about law when he's away from it.  That's the kind of person that really deserves to be a lawyer.  I don't like the fact that I can't work a full-time job outside of the home because I can't be on my feet all day long and I just don't have the energy to work all day and then come home and take care of all the at home responsibilities.  I am envious of anyone who is able to do this.

I've all but given up on crafting or anything else I love doing.  I just don't have the time or energy to.  Not completely true but by the time the kids are in bed and asleep, I'm wrapping up stuff and then moving myself towards bed because I'm just that dang tired.  It drives me nuts!

I know, I know, I know.  I need to make time for myself.  My mom  in a conversation earlier today asked me if I was depressed because I was crying about not having enough time to get stuff done and complaining about life in general.  The answer is a firm NO!  I'm just a bit lost right now.  I look at my husband, my adult friends and family members and see that they are doing things they love and want to be doing with their lives.  I love being a wife, mother & caregiver but I'm by no means content in that defining who I am.  I know there are people out there that are OK with that defining them, but I'm not.

I have a fire in my belly telling me that there's more to who I am than just that.

I just need her to show up.

If any of you see her walking down the street tell her I'm looking for her.

Oh, and if you see Super Woman and she's available, tell her I'd like to hire her for a few days.

08 November 2011

Indiana Wine Trail Fall Haul

Saturday was a beautiful warm Fall day for Indiana.  It was a perfect day to head to Southern Indiana for visiting some wineries.  There are 6 wineries on Indiana's Wine Trail (although there are about 50 total wineries in Indiana) that do special events periodically throughout the year.  In the Fall, they all do something called Fall Haul - they feature wines either in recipes or pair them with recipes.  They feature the food and the wine.  It sounded like fun and a good time for Lane and I to have some adult time without the kids.

We invited my sister, Edite along for the ride.  In all my years as an Indiana resident before I moved away, I have spent very little time venturing to other areas of the state.  Besides spending time in Bloomington during college and the Indiana metroplex, I haven't seen much of Indiana.  Completely disappointing since I'm proud to call myself a Hoosier.  Upon moving back I made the decision that I wanted to take more day or weekend trips to areas undiscovered.

In our adventures on Saturday we found that Indiana tends to produce wines that are either on the semi-sweet or sweet side or are fairly dry.  Not that I mind sweet wines, but they are not necessarily my first pick.  There were some wineries that we really liked, others we'll never buy wines from.  One thing I'd like to see is some Indiana wineries maybe import some grapes to blend with the sweeter grapes.  I think one of the reasons Indiana wines are sweeter is because the soil is more conducive to growing a sweeter grape variety.  By far my favorite Indiana winery is still Oliver Winery.  Their wines are sweeter but unlike the majority of the wines we tasted on Saturday from the 5 wineries we visited are that they're not overly/sickly sweet to me.

We came home with 4 bottles of wine.  There were others we would've liked to have bought but it just wasn't in our budget right now.  So we'll start looking for them in local groceries.  One winery we visited that was my 2nd favorite of the day doesn't sell in stores because they can't keep up with the demand.  So we'll have to get in touch with them directly to ship to us or make another trip.  We're hoping to visit other Indiana wineries and maybe even start making trips to Illinois since they have quite a few wineries there too that I've been told are pretty good.

Some of my photos are from a few of the wineries.  Unfortunately, the wineries around here aren't the typical wineries with tasting rooms in California that we encountered.  And yes, one of the wineries had already started decorating for Christmas but their decorations were pretty cool.  A few of the photos are from downtown Madison.  I wish I would've had more time to walk around and take photos of the amazing older buildings and homes.  I guess that's one thing I love about this state - the smaller towns have so much history and character.  My other slight disappointment was that I had hoped So. Indiana still had quite a few leaves on their trees but most of the color was gone.  Actually, I think more trees were missing leaves there than up here in the Indy area.  Oh well, might just have to see Fall down their earlier next year!  I can't wait to keep exploring around the state.

04 November 2011

Grandparents Come for a Visit and Halloween

Last Thursday, Lane's parents came into town to spend some time with all of their Indiana grandkids.  With our house being about 98% put together we had the guest bedroom all set up for them and were very much looking forward to them spending a few nights with us.

The kids really enjoyed their time with Grandma and Grandpa.  Emi and Eriks got to read with Grandma Thursday afternoon.
Later that evening my nieces came over with their parents and we all hung out together eating pizza and watching the World.Series.  There was also a skit that the girls and Eriks put on for us that involved Medieval knights and sword fighting.

Friday we headed to the Children's Museum for the haunted house.  We walked through with the lights on because I knew none of the kids would've enjoyed it with lights out.  They would've been too frightened.  I don't know how many of the adults would've enjoyed lights out either.  The person in our family who really likes haunted houses is my sister-in-law Marla.  Eriks was a little scared even with the lights on.  I think he was afraid something was going to jump out at him.  The two smallest girls going through, Emi and my niece A were the least scared and enjoyed it a lot.

Grandma and Grandpa left for TX Saturday afternoon.  It was a short visit but we were glad they were here with us.  We'll see them again at Thanksgiving.

The weather for Halloween couldn't have been more perfect.  We ended up going over to my mom and dad's house for dinner and the kids put on their costumes there.  That way they could trick-or-treat at Omi and Opi's house before heading home to trick-or-treat in our neighborhood.  I even got a chance to take a picture of my niece Laila in her panda costume which she at first refused to put on, but after my brother took her next door to visit a neighbor for trick-or-treating and she got candy, she was happy to have the costume on.

 Our jack-o-lantern.  I did a quick carving.  Usually I use a pattern but this year I had no time so I free-handed.  We still got a lot of compliments on it from our neighbors.
Eriks and Emi with their candy loot.  

Tomorrow Lane and I are heading to Southern Indiana to take part in the Indiana Wine Trail's Fall Haul.  Six wineries will showcase wines for tasting as well as used them in cooking.  They will share the recipes for the food they make using their wines.  We are so looking forward to this.  The fall colors in Southern Indiana should be amazing and we can't wait to try some more Indiana wines.  Best part is we are going without our kids (although we will miss them dearly).  This is some very much needed adult time!
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