Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Something for my filing cabinet in cyberspace.

A lot has certainly happened since I last wrote. Sometimes I can go months without feeling the need to write but then I HAVE to. I have been a few chapters away from finishing a novel for the past year but I haven't quite got it together to finish it. It's not even writer's block. My head is filled with ideas that just need some sort of escape route but then it all gets poured into something else like decorating my huge basement room that has stood empty for the past year and just seemed to be too sad to stay that way. We also went on vacation when my Mum came out to visit us and I became absorbed in making sure that 6 sets of clothing remained somewhat organized throughout the almost 10 day road trip.
The kids have since started school and now at 3.45pm every day I get swallowed in three sets of homework, which I somehow have to organize (my children won't organize themselves) while preparing dinner, trying to remember that I have a cub scout now, and taking care of an 18 month old who this week came down with this rather horrible throat/sinus thing that has him sounding like he's a habitual smoker.
Spencer was recently prescribed contact lenses for his Astigmatism since an eye condition he has called Nystagmus prevents glasses from really helping. I hate to imagine what his vision is with nothing - glasses can get him to 20/80 but contacts can bring him up to 20/60. This has been something which has also commandeered a large part of my brain, even keeping me up at night trying not to worry about getting them successfully on his eyes before he has to be out the door to school.
I don't even know who if anyone ever reads this blog since I've become so sporadic but I can feel the tension ebbing away as I write this and that in itself is probably the main reason I still keep a blog. Just sorting through my thoughts in a tangible way such as this helps me to stay on top of things and I can't lie - I have an element of me (quite large) that needs to be in control of my little world. Today I cleaned the house and I had to mentally force myself to stop peering at the baseboards for dust and play with Oliver. It's quite the challenge keeping that part of me in check when inevitably, having 4 children in the house will cause a few messes. I almost hyperventilated when I went downstairs this afternoon and found most of the cushions of my new sofa on the floor arranged into a fort.
The reason I turned here this evening was just life really. Gary had a work meeting and couldn't get home until around 6pm and 4-6pm are the busiest time of the day for me. Spencer was having a hard time with a piece of math homework. Isn't it always math? He was crying, begging for help and then loudly arguing that 3 quarters added up to 70 cents and nothing I could say made a difference. Oliver was crying the entire time with his pitiful little hoarse voice and Nathan was downstairs removing the couch cushions. I was also trying to prevent a pan of rice from becoming the most inedible thing I have ever cooked. I wrote Spencer's teacher an interesting email I hope he will put down to a momentary lapse of sanity and almost headed to the corner to assume the fetal position.
So here I am listening loudly to Nadia Ali while I just exorcise the demons. I think I need Dumbledore's Pensieve.

So Leia also has an Astigmatism. She thankfully is happy to have glasses and is able to see a noticeable difference when she wears them.

The new family room is a great place to read at bedtime. This is what I can happily say is now taking place as I have this minute to myself.

The cabinet I now have to put my old books in. No more 120 year old copies of Great Expectations by Charles Dickens getting their covers ripped off any more!

The cool photo of the London Eye I got for my wall. I took the exact same view myself when I was there in March only this one I found online is way better. It has atmosphere and mine just looked dull.

Us on holiday. We were having a lovely time. I thought getting the kids back to school was my Utopia but looking back I miss those lazy days of Summer. Well...a little bit!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The green room and the graduating class of 2023!

I'm so tired I think the only thing I could do tonight would be type. I've been working hard on Spencer's bedroom for the past several days and I finished it today. It took most of the day to get it all together. Not to mention the two entire days of painting first (well two days in between everything else I still have to do!) I love the way it turned out and Spencer's thrilled too, especially with the papasan chair.

This evening we had to go to Nathan's Kindergarten Graduation. Now I love my crazy and entertaining Nathan to bits but at this point I'm rather over this kind of thing. I was amazed at the parents that showed up with bouquets of flowers and balloons with "GRADUATE" on them. I mean, they DO know that no one's actually graduating from anything right?
The gym was way over capacity and hot. I felt extremely claustrophobic and it seemed so long as they read name after name followed by parents snapping pictures. I, of course, took my pictures as well. I wouldn't want Nathan to feel short changed sometime in the misty future because I took better pictures at Leia's pre-school graduation than I did at his kindergarten graduation. Actually I did but there were a tenth of the people at that particular event which makes for easier photo taking.
So here's to the graduating class of 2023. Whoohoo!

This last picture is the best because it was taken outside. The red eye in the gym pictures is awful. I just wasn't in the mood to fiddle about with the settings, not when Oliver was climbing the walls.

Monday, May 23, 2011


Well, after many thoughts about the "normal" development of babies, Oliver is finally walking at almost 16 months. I must have done a fair few google searches on developmental milestones and looked at the rather intimidating statistic that 90% of babies walk by 14 months one too many times. It seems silly to worry about that stuff since he has been saying words - morning, ma ma, daa (daddy), bye, night night to name a few, he tries to get the attention of anyone who comes near him, and he dances, but as a mother you can't seem to help it. So it has been my mission to coax him into it. For quite a while now I have been holding things just out of his reach and until today he has resisted the bait. So he has wobbled up and down while I desperately tried to record the moment. Fun stuff! Here are the pictures I managed to get.

Looks like it's time to get some ink on those feet!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Easter Bunny

Today we were wandering around the mall and the kids got a bug to go and see the Easter Bunny. Now I'm not too fond of the Easter Bunny. In fact I think the whole idea is close to ludicrous. I can get behind Santa as he has his roots in an actual person who did good works and gifts are an integral part of what Christmas is about. But leprechauns and giant bunnies. I don't think so. I've already told the children that I am the Easter Bunny, and although Leia continues to pretend it's not true, I really just want my children to appreciate Easter for what it actually is. A holy holiday which I prefer just to celebrate in church and through devotional activities. I will make devilled eggs tomorrow (mostly because I love them) and the kids will get a small amount of chocolate but generally that is it for me. I do love photos though, and this one is pretty good. I was concerned that Oliver might freak out at the sight of this gigantic bunny, but I think he just thought he was a toy. I love to be with them all and I feel such a sense of self in my role as a mother. As time has gone on, it has become a more and more fulfilling job - if you can call motherhood something as mundane as a job.

You might be able to guess that pictures of my kids with the Easter Bunny are not very plentiful but I was feeling a little nostalgic after I brought the picture home and so here are the only other Easter Bunny pictures I have.

This is Easter 2003. I was 8 months pregnant with Spencer and Leia wouldn't sit with the Bunny unless we both sat with her.

This is Easter 2004. The thing I think of when I look at this picture is how nice that sweater Leia is wearing was. It was lined with a super soft fleece and was nice and heavy so she could wear it as jacket. But their faces say it all. That's why I said yes when a visit to the bunny was suggested today. It's all in good fun (in small doses). There may not be another bunny picture for another 7 years!

And in case you were wondering, the leprechaun does NOT visit the Asp house.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

England, March 2011

So here are my long overdue pictures from my trip to England with Leia. We had the most fantastic time and the only bad thing about the trip was that it was too short. Leia was a total Angel the entire time and was so much fun to travel with. ENJOY! On the plane from Denver to Charlotte. Leia loved flying and while I don't mind it, she had such joy in the experience that it rubbed off on me. We looked out the window together, she drew pictures for the flight crew (on the flight from Charlotte to London) and we ate our not too nice plane food with as much enjoyment as if they had been our favorite restaurant dishes.
Jet lagged Leia taking a bath after the long voyage. Baths are so much better in a claw footed tub, don't you think?

My brother in law Ben helping my sister make a delicious Sunday dinner. I do love to see a man in the kitchen.

My sister's stuffing wrapped in bacon. Seriously the most delicious morsel you'll ever taste. And she had also saved a Christmas pudding for me which she served for dessert that day. I hate to say that going to England is all about the food but sometimes it just is!

My gorgeous sister who also is my go to girl for shopping advice - I mean can you blame me?

My best friend.

Me with both my best friends. SO good to spend time with them!

Leia with her cousin Cate. Cate is seriously the funniest little girl. I couldn't stop kissing those cheeks.

Here's one of her favorite funny faces. It looks like she is about to swallow you.
Leia and Max on the ipad. The ipad was quite the hit with everyone.

I love this picture. Cousin Max was so thrilled that Leia was visiting him. She played with Max and Cate every chance she got.

Leia and Great Nan Foster. It was so good to see my Grandparents on my Mum's side. They loved seeing Leia as well and even though Leia doesn't remember them so well it's as if they were never apart.
Leia and Great Grandad Foster

One thing I'll always remember about my school days in the UK was making daisy chains on the school field at lunchtimes. I couldn't wait to show Leia how to do it as I've never seen those tiny daisies in America. They'll always be one of my favorite flowers.

Leia playing with Cate at a playground in my Grandparents neighborhood.

On the train to London with Auntie Rachel. Going on the tube was a thrill for Leia. She made sure she always had a map with her and knew exactly where we were going and how many stops we still had to go.

In London, getting ready to go on a trip on the London Eye.

Leia taking a picture of Big Ben on the London Eye. Her camera was full of pictures of Big Ben, double decker buses, post boxes, telephone boxes, dishes we ate, English currency and Max and Cate pulling faces.
Enjoying the views on the London Eye.

Me and Sissy. Waiting for The Lion King to start. So exciting. Leia had the best time as she was seated in the aisle. She got a book with pictures in from the show and ice cream in the interval. She says it's her favorite part of the trip. Eating out after the show. The food was excellent but each and every wall in the toilet was mirrored. NOT such a fun experience! Leia was so pooped after our day in London. She loves writing down how she feels. This is a napkin in the restaurant.
A tranquil walk through the woods where my Dad is buried. Such a beautiful place that I actually want to go to. I only wish I could go more often.

Leia hanging out her smalls to dry. In England, hanging out your washing is nothing short of a righteous endeavor, something to aspire to, yet here in America it carries a stigma. Of course this is the land of the Hummer and fridges that you can fit an entire person inside of!

Cate and Rachel.

Leia with my brother Simon. Leia and Simon are kindred spirits.

Auntie Sarah, my brother's wife with Leia and I in a shack by the beach. The only bad weather day of the whole trip is the day we set aside to go to the seaside. At least hot chocolate and a full English breakfast in that heat free shack was very fun.

Waiting for our full English!

Frozen Cate. The rain chilled us to the bone.

Going on the bumper cars with Auntie Sarah warmed Leia up a little. We also went on the world's oldest roller coaster, one we've all been on many times in our lives before and it never gets old, from the creaking wood, to nothing but momentum keeping the thing going!

The three Boycott kids. How I love my siblings!

The trampoline Max got for his birthday and which me and Rachel spent three punishing hours putting together one afternoon. At least we forgot about that when having fun bouncing on it.

Having a camera that can take multiple shots a second comes in handy once in a while.

Showing off the nests she made with Auntie Sarah. In England you can get shredded wheat in large size and you crumble it up, mix it with melted chocolate and form it into nests. Then you put Cadbury's mini eggs in the nest - REAL Cadbury's mini eggs, not the ones Hershey makes under the Cadbury name. YUM YUM!

While I had the most amazing time I missed my boys quite a bit. Gary shaved their heads while I was gone, spilled something pink on the carpet and spent loads of money on blu-rays and board games, and ate way too much pizza. They needed me home after 10 days, that's for sure. I'm already trying to cook up plans for all of us to go next time. Summer 2012 would be perfect. Now how can I rustle up about $10,000. Ideas????