About Me

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I am an Air Force wife and mother of three precious gifts from God. I enjoy learning at home with my children, and the many adventures this life sends our way. So stop by often to visit, and check out what the Five Nomads are up to.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sugar Plums are dancing in our heads. . .

Alas, it is here. Nutcracker opening night last night. Princess had a splendid time. She so enjoys being a part of the show. It makes all of the driving, volunteering, sewing and support worth the effort. This is definitely an example of the more we give of ourselves to others, the greater the gift we receive. Just one beaming smile makes it all worth it!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A question for Library Ann. . .

or anyone else who may have read An Army At Dawn by Rick Atkinson.

The General just picked up this book, and I am having a hard time finding a review. Well, I did find one that said it was an excellent book. However, the gentleman didn't say if it would be an excellent book for a 13 year old boy.

So if any of you folks have read this book I would appreciate your feedback. With Nutcracker being in full swing, I just do not have time to pre-read this one for him.

Thank you for your time,

Mrs. Nomad
Head Mistress of the Nomad Academy

Monday, December 6, 2010

Ramblin' Jacks Deep Fried Pickles. .

Yummmmm. . .

Since Princess has been busy dancing up a storm, I've had to find things to fill my time. Of all the endless possibilities, my favorite activity has been the taste testing at local restaurants. (I know you are all so shocked.)

Although I have never made these myself (I have an aversion to deep frying), a friend back in DC used to treat us with this appetizer. I think dipping hamburger cut dill pickles in a cornmeal batter and deep frying is all it would take to whip up this tasty little treat. At Ramblin' Jacks they have a Dijon Mustard dipping sauce on the side. Again I say, YUMMMM!

Do you have a favorite appetizer you'd like to share?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Look what The General has been up to.

My oldest has recently been working on stop-frame animation. He is a history buff, and currently WWII is his passion. Check out his video, he's so excited to have his first posting on YouTube.

Dawn by Design-you rock!

Did you notice the cool Advent Candles on my side bar? Dawn over at Dawn by Design has these free of charge. A big thank you to Dawn! It is nice to have something Catholic to decorate my blog.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Giving Thanks

Throughout my life I have been blessed with God's tender care. Whenever there is a trial, He sends someone to hold my hand.This year that someone was my friend T. Mr. Nomad wasn't able to celebrate Thanksgiving Day with us, so T. and her family graciously stepped in. (Even though they are Canadian, so it really isn't their holiday.)This was our first time sharing a meal together. From the looks of our spread, I think we make a good team. What a feast! I'm so thankful to have a table laden with yummy treats, and even more grateful to have had friends to share in that celebration.

Ahhh. . . .contentment fills my heart as I write this Thanksgiving weekend.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Winter Wonderland

This was the scene outside my back door yesterday. Much fun has been had by all!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Food for thought. . .

One time I asked my very wise and loving Grandma B, "What was your favorite stage in your life?"

She didn't even hesitate with her answer, "When my children were young and at home."

From that time on Mr. Nomad and I realized this fact: Although these days can be exhausting, these are the good ole days. We are making the memories that will sustain us in our twilight years.

What do you think is the best stage of life?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Sounds from upstairs. . .

"MMMOOOOMMMM!" Bubby yells. Next, scuffling noises are heard.

Then, "You're just a bad old pussy cat!" Bubby screams.

Hmmm. . .do you think my computer time is done?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Thanksgiving: Counting my blessings.

You may have noticed that my postings are even more sparse than normal. See those three beautiful children at the top of the page? This is a season they are needing their momma more than normal, so not so much spare time on the computer for me these days. (Although today has been a guilty pleasure.)
To honor the fast approaching Thanksgiving holiday, I'd like to share my top 10 blessings. I invite you to join me. Feel free to share your blessings in the comment section, or leave a link to your blog in the comments.

Tami's Top 10 Blessings

10) Chocolate peanut butter cup cookies, yum.

9) Sunshine after the rain.

8) Modern technology. I remember the days of outrageous phone bills, and am so grateful it is affordable to stay connected.

7) Mount Rainier. It always fills me with awe when I see it peeking out of the clouds.

6) My home. I know I can survive in less, but I am so grateful to have a pretty house to call home.

5) A wonderful church and a safe neighborhood for my children.

4) Friends. My military friends have been more like family over the years. I cannot imagine life without any of you.

3) Extended family. Let me tell you that is a lot, with my funky family tree.

2) My family. Growing up I always wanted to be a mommy. Here I am, living my dream.

1) My faith in God. Without that belief, and Him at my center, I am nothing.

May you all be able to seek out the blessings in your life and thank God. When I focus on what I have, instead of what I am missing in my life, the journey is so much sweeter.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tami's Tips: I'm not just a bunch of hot air.

So with the chill of fall in the air, it is time to turn on the furnace. For the past week I have been awakened each morning, ROASTING! You know me, I'm always cold, so this has been quite the surprise. I checked the thermostat, and the heat was only set to 69 degrees. Puzzled I asked my friend K, who is staying with us for a few weeks, if it was hot downstairs in the mornings. "NO!" Was her response.

Last night I got to the bottom of the problem, and here is my little public service announcement:

Make sure you open your downstairs vents, and close some of the upstairs vents!

Since heat rises, we close the vents downstairs in the summer to keep the air conditioning blowing mostly upstairs. Now that the air is cooler, and we are blowing hot air out again it was time to reverse the system.

Poor K was downstairs freezing, because all of the warm air was going upstairs. The thermostat is downstairs, so it was cold and thought we needed more heat. This explains why we were so toasty upstairs.

I'm happy to report switching up the vents has solved this riddle. All is well with the world. ;)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tami's Tips: Folex is Fantastic

ACK! Bubby and Princess had a little art session. Pretty colors, but not so much on my carpet.While not my favorite outcome, I'm not thrown into such a tizzy these days. That's because Jen introduced me to one of my closest cleaning friends: FOLEX!! (Did you hear the angels sing?)
Simply spray the spots with Folex, and blot with a damp cloth.
More blotting. No rubbing, blotting. My friend Angie told me that was very important. It has something to do with the carpet fibers, and then I heard the "wah, wah, wah, wah" from Charlie Brown. Angie is smart, so I just listen, and always BLOT!
Before you know it. . . .
GONE! (The darkness you see in the picture is just from the carpet being wet. It dried perfectly, and you can't tell a 4 year old crafted on the carpet. Ever.)

This wasn't really that big of a carpet emergency, just a bit of paint. But my friend Folex has taken Sharpie marker out of carpet more times than I care to remember. Then there was the time we were staying with our friends, and Bubby markered all over their cream carpet. And their daughters favorite stuffed animal.

I'm sorry I don't have photos of those experiences. It was back when Folex and I were just getting to know one another. I would panic, and not even think about photos for blog posting. That is until the spot was already gone. Sorry. Spots in the carpet make me a little, crazy. Yes, crazy would be the word.

Thanks Folex for returning me to sanity.

While I don't wish the "need" for Folex on you, I do hope my friend Folex can help you out if you ever find yourself in a carpet emergency.

:) Tami

Friday, September 17, 2010

7 Quick Takes for 9/17/10

Click on over to check it out, and say hello to Jen. (You know, I have to admit that sounds strange to me. I've never met Jen, we aren't bloggy buddies. I have just visited her blog on various occassions, and really liked what she had to say.)

1. I just talked to my sister, Jody Blue. GUESS WHAT?!?? She and her friend Barb are flying out to visit me! They are staying for a whole week too. Oh boy are we going to have fun!

2. We started classes this week. I didn't realize how much support just being around all of those other homeschoolers provides my psyche. Although it takes a big chunk out of our week, it is very much worth the effort at this point in the game.

3. Remember when I first moved here, and met some really nice ladies at the Catholic Homeschool Group? Guess what? I think they like me. Many of them I can call friend. They are such wonderful ladies, so full of wisdom, love and knowledge. I feel so blessed God led me to their group.

4. As I sit here typing, I hear the rain falling outside. I'd better start taking some vitamin D. If the rainy season has already begun, it could be awhile before I see my friend, Mr. Golden Sun. Oh, how I miss him when the cloudy skies prevail here in the Pacific Northwest.

5. Today the kiddos and I went to visit another family from the Catholic Homeschool Group. They live about an hour away. Even with the rain, it was such a beautiful drive. Sitting on the distant hills, the clouds, scattered here and there, were gathered in smoky clusters. While the evergreens were standing at attention, tall and majestic. It seemed as if Puget Sound kept peaking out from around each corner. God's glorious creation makes up for the rain. (Most of the time.)

6. It has become abundantly clear we are ready to move on to a whole new world of homeschooling. It is time for me to make up a lesson plan on the weekend, and then let The General and Princess learn to be responsible for getting their work done without my prompts. Sounds easy enough, right? What it takes is me giving up the micro managing control of day to day business. It also means that I need to get organized with a schedule on a weekly, rather than daily basis. Yikes. I have to admit this new phase is scary.

7. Last night we enjoyed a stop at Cold Stone Creamery ice cream before bed. It gave me such a tummy ache. So why did I just eat a piece of chocolate cake at this hour? Ugh, I'll never learn.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

We have not forgotten.

Dear Heavenly Father,
May those who perished in the 9/11 attacks rest in peace. May all of those who were left behind be folded in your love and kindness. May we all learn to follow Christ, and the goodness of that day be replicated. May the ugly hatred of that day be washed away.

Monday, September 6, 2010

1st Day of School: Traditions

The General was starting 4th grade, and Princess was a sweet little kindergarten student.
This is The General and Princess on the first day of school, back in 2005. They were helping make Sticky Buns. Sticky Buns have been a tradition of our first day of school. A fun way to start the day, and when they were younger it was a great math lesson.
In working on this post, I've had to face some hard realities. First of all, I have only 3 pictures in the past 6 years of our first day of school. (This is actually our 7th year of homeschooling, but the first year we were kind of thrown in at the last minute. So we started "traditional" school that year.) In the beginning it was all fresh and new, and I had my camera out to capture the moment. As the years progressed, no pictures. :(

Unfortunately, another not so nice tradition has crept in. That is my overwhelming feelings of doubt and guilt on the first day of school. My feeling like I'm not a good homeschooling momma. Since we used to be year round schoolers, (It is too hard to make my children school in WA during the summer. When the sun finally shines, I feel like we need to soak every last moment of it in.) we generally do not have "new" stuff in the fall. I buy supplies as we need them. So when the "official" first day rolls around, I feel all sorts of angst and inadequacy at my lack of cool first day experiences. When I give in to this, it just kind of steam rolls into an "I suck" mentality. You can imagine that really isn't healthy. Or true.
When I was blubbering about this to Mr. Nomad, he listened kindly. Gave me my moment of feeling sorry for myself, and then said, "so a field trip to Las Vegas, that wasn't cool enough?" Hmmmm. . . . . I think he has a point.
I'm guilty of the ugly comparisons. I look around and see the cool stuff everyone else is doing, but do not take the time to give myself credit for the great things I do. It reminds me of that Attitude quote I have in my side bar. Life is what I choose to make it. I can line myself up with our Lord, and have peace. (Not saying there aren't going to be challenges.) Or, I can get caught up in feeling sorry for myself.
So today on my third day of homeschooling, in this our 7th season, I will celebrate. I am celebrating the fact that at 13, my son is turning into a young man with great character. I am celebrating the fact that my daughter has a wonderful spirit, and loves to serve. I am celebrating the fact that my children love to go to Mass, and when it comes to the Eucharist, THEY GET IT!
Now Bubby, we're still working on it. He's having a hard time lately, which is probably why I let myself get a bit blue. (Consistently molding a 4 year old really wears on you after awhile.) But, my little man does get Confession. He hasn't officially received this sacrament, but he gets it. Whenever he does something wrong, you can see him cross himself, then mutter a little prayer asking Jesus to forgive him.
This experience has reminded me to zoom out, and look at the big picture. No, I'm not always good at the big splash days. But I am good at the every day. Not so much me, but God working through me. If I keep Christ at my center, and my heart open to the Holy Spirit, the fruits will continue to multiply.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I'm off to Vegas. . .

It is 60 degrees, I'm freezing. . . what's a girl to do. I'm gonna get some sunshine. Las Vegas here we come!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bubby's Take on Wilderness Survival

While we were walking in the woods the other day, Bubby asked about getting lost. I reassured him that if he were with Princess, she would take care of him. He replied, "Yea, we'd walk in the jungle, eat bugs, AND we'd LOVE it!"
Somebody better prep the sister.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The reality of life. . . .

It's Friday, and I said to my sister, "Ahh, Friday. I should do a 7 quick takes."

Then the reality hit. I need to. . . .

1) Clean my house: with help from the kiddos. Lucky me.

2) Stain the deck: again, with help from the children--God, please help me to be a good teacher, filled with patience--PLEASE. Don't laugh, that is a serious prayer. I'd appreciate you adding your intentions for me as well. Pretty please.

3) Go to the commissary (grocery store). This could very well be my least favorite of all activities. Hopefully there won't be too many crabby retirees there to sneer at my children. Not to worry, I've started Bubby's training in "kill them with kindness."

Seriously, who can stay grumpy with these sweet faces smiling at you?

I hope this finds you all well, and enjoying your day. May God be with you, and peace reside in your hearts.

Have a nice weekend,


Monday, August 2, 2010

Did I just get slammed by a 4 year old?

Bubby was being a pesky little brother the other day. He was pestering The General, he was pestering me, and when I had enough I said, "You know Bubby, when you pester and act like a bugger, nobody wants to play with you!"
He responded, "Well, if the shoe fits!"

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pray for our airmen & their families.

There was a plane crash in Alaska last night. You can read more about it here. I've heard from my friend who is stationed there, and her husband is fine. The guilty fine that is. "Whew, it wasn't my friend," just doesn't bring a lot of comfort.

This one hits close to home. Mr. Nomad spends a significant amount of time in the sky, so I can only imagine how hard this is for these families. Please pray for them.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Can't argue with that one. . . .

The other day I was hounding The General to get packed up for Scout Camp. He continued to dilly dally, so I said, "You know General, I think you are fabulous boy. BUT, sometimes you can be very lazy."
Without missing a beat he retorted, "I'm not lazy. I'm just saving up my energy until I'm in my 30's and really need it."

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bubby's Take on Prayer

The other day we were shopping for our friend's little boy. He's teeny, tiny so Princess and I were oogling the preemie clothes. (I for a little gift for a dear friend, Princess for her American Girl Dolls.) As we looked at the little outfits, Bubby walks over and puts a package of diapers in our basket. I said, "Bubby, we aren't sending Baby T diapers."
"No, these aren't for T. They are for us," He confidently responded.
Me rather puzzled, "Ummm, Bubby you are potty trained. We don't need diapers."
Still very confident, Bubby explained, "Mommy, I said a prayer to Jesus. We are going to have a baby sister."
Suppressing a giggle I said, "Well, sweetie. It is a little more complex than that. The whole baby process takes longer than that."
I put the diapers back on the shelf, and returned my attention to outfit oogling. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Bubby making the sign of the cross and talking to himself. (Actually, I knew he wasn't talking to himself. He's my little prayer warrior. He talks to Jesus quite a bit, which makes this Momma's heart just about burst with joy!)
Anywho, Bubby walked back to the diapers. He picked up a package and placed them in the cart once again.
"Um, Bubby, Mommy said we don't need diapers," I informed.
He didn't skip a beat with this response, "Mommy, we are having a baby. I just said a longer prayer to Jesus!"
Oh, if only I were that confident in my prayers. What is it they say about the faith of a child? I want some of that.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Seven Quick Takes: July 2010

1. I love summer. For a while, I thought it was the laziness of summer I loved. Yet when I consider my summer days, they are anything but lazy. With 3 kiddos, golf lessons, ballet classes, scouts, baseball & hockey camps we have our fair share of running around. What I realized is this: Summer days are not as scheduled, which leaves room for projects that I don't get to when we are in the thick of schooling. That is what I enjoy. Warm weather, and doing what I WANT instead of what I HAVE to do.

2. One of those projects was painting my master bath. I'm still deciding if I like the color. Mr. Nomad said I can repaint if I don't like it. Unless I hate it, there will be no repainting. I like things to look good, but I don't need perfection. Seriously, what mother has the time to re-do work?

3. While painting I remembered why I waited so long to do this project. Bubby LOVES to paint. He kept trying to "help." I was smart this time, and put my foot down. Some crazy person suggested letting your kiddos help you. The theory was the children would paint a few minutes, get bored, and want to g0 do their own thing. Thus leaving you free to paint, alone. Fat chance. I know one day I will be happy and proud of their tenacity, but chasing them around with wet paint brushes doesn't bring out the best in me.

4. Mary over at Hope Echoes is moving. She may not have Internet for 2 weeks, and is thinking of turning off her comments. This is disturbing. I know I'm not here every day, and I don't plan my day around blogging. . . But, when I do have time to check in, it is always comforting to know Mary's daily postings are there. No Hope Echoes for TWO WHOLE WEEKS? I'm a big girl, I'm sure I'll be fine.

5. My friend is moving. I'm sad. They are a family we really hit it off with when we moved here last fall. She is from my home state, Minnesota. They are Catholic, so we are able to worship together. They have 6 children, so everyone has a playmate. AND, she likes to knit. Who will be my friend now??

6. My friend K is in town this weekend. She is generally very busy doing the 5 gazillion projects she is juggling, but I'm hopeful we'll get a little time to chat before and after all of her commitments.

7. K invited Mr. Nomad & I to join her at Zoobilee. It is a black tie event. Do you think I can get away with wearing a knee length cocktail dress with nice jewelry and sassy shoes? Who am I kidding? I could wear a garbage bag. It is overcast and chilly today, the only thing you'll see is my coat. Maybe I'll just accessorize the coat. . .

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. For those of you in the heat, stay cool and enjoy a dip in the pool for me.

Stop by and say hello to Jen at Conversion Diary. She so graciously hosts 7 Quick Takes each week.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Music, the balm to a weary soul.

Yesterday was a bit rough. I don't want to get into details, but things are a bit rocky for us Nomads. Don't be worried, nothing serious. Just neighborhood growing pains, which are never fatal. Only painful.

Anywho, this morning I headed out for a run with a very heavy heart. Running in WA is therapy for me. It was just what I needed when I laced up the sneakers this morning. The air was clear, the trees a beautiful green, I was surrounded by God's creation. The General was so kind to share his iPod, so I hit the shuffle button and headed out. As I was running, God spoke to me through the music.

Need to Breathe's Washed By The Water (Live) spoke to me loud and clear. "Even when the rain comes, even when the flood starts rising, even when the storm comes, I am washed by the waters." Yes, the waters of my Baptism carry me through life's troubles.

This was followed by The David Crowder Band's How He Loves . Dealing with issues may really stink, but through it all God loves me. Then Third Day and Toby Mac chimed in. Each with messages echoing that life may be hard, BUT, God is always going to be there for me. He's here, He loves me, and He uses times like this to mold me into something better. I need only trust in Him, and follow the beautiful example of His son, Jesus Christ.

I'm a little ashamed to say this prayerful handling of trouble is a bit new. Of course I've prayed a lot in the past (You don't raise 3 children without LOTS of prayers!), but generally I start with phone calls to my peeps. (Poor Jody Blue, she's my speed dial.) Being the talker I am, I need to process. So I chat, and chat, and chat my way through problems. This isn't a bad thing. It's just this time I'm finding such peace talking to God.

As the old parable of the man who built his house on the sand goes: Each man encounters a storm. It is just the man who builds his house on the rock who remains standing after the storm. Please say a prayer for me, that I would walk in Christ's shadow. I suspect I have a few breezy days in my future. No worries though, I'm under construction on a very sturdy rock.

God Bless,

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

What do you think?

I'm back from my vacation. We had a great time. ABM, there was a place with a ukulele sale. . .but it was closed every time we drove by. Though, it did make me chuckle each time I saw it.

Sorry no pictures or details today, we are on the heals of vacation followed by visitors. We have had some WONDERFUL days filled with celebration of family and friends. Today I will down load pictures in between playing catch up (Around the house and blogger world. I'm so excited to stop by and see you. I've missed my bloggy friends), and prepping for the next group. Mr. Nomad and I are sort of hosting a little cousin family reunion in a few weeks.

Okay, no pictures. . .no big news. . .why the heck am I posting?

I have a question. . . If you have a dream about rowing all night, you wake up in a sweat, with your jammies soaked, do you think you could count that for your work out?

Just wondering.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hawaii or bust.

Grandma & Grandpa-check
Pantry stocked-check
Schedules arranged-check
Emergency & help number listed-check
Bags packed-check
Kiddos prepped-check

Now all I need is my handsome husband to come home from work, and we are off. Hawaii, here we come!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tami's Tips: I'm going down the toilet with this one.

It is time for yet another installment of Tami's Tips. I know you have all been sitting on pins and needles, waiting for just a tidbit of my awesome knowledge. (Am I funny today? Maybe just annoying?)
Hold on to your hats readers, this is not an ordinary post. For some it may be a bit over the appropriate blogger edge. I apologize if you find this talk offensive. But sometimes, these things just need to be discussed.

Have you ever had problems using one of the new fangled, water saving toilets? You know the kind. The ones your children stop up on a regular basis. (See, having children is handy. You can blame embarrassing things, like a clogged toilet, on them.) I love living in a new house, but getting used to the toilets has been a plunging experience. Literally.

Here's a tip to cut down on those pesky plunging operations. When flushing after #2, hold the handle down until the water stops running into the toilet. Maybe teach the kiddos to sing the Happy Birthday or ABC song, both when flushing and washing the hands after the job.

I'd like to take credit for this golden tidbit, but I have to give credit to Greg our builder. Proper flushing of the toilets was on our new home owner tour. Greg took off the lid of the tank, and gave a demonstration. You would not believe on how much more water you can get through the bowl by simply holding the handle down those few extra seconds.

Now you might be thinking, "Yah, right. What difference does a few measley seconds of water make on the flush." I'm here to tell you. . .A LOT! Case and point, Mr. Nomad and I rarely have problems with a backed up toilet. The older kiddos who learned the ways of flushing, have significantly cut down their use of the dreaded bathroom plunger. Now poor Bubby, just hasn't gotten the hang of it. We end up plunging nearly every time that boy flushes. You know, he likes to "do the honor" himself.

So there it is. A tool to make life with water saving toilets livable. My tips have only been around a few months, and already they have gone down the toilet.

Friday, June 11, 2010

7 Quick Takes

1. The fish finally died. Fortunately we've worked through the hard part. No tears today. Now to find a place to plant him.

2. This is ballet recital weekend. Pictures tonight, rehearsal tomorrow, and recital on Sunday. The studio Princess takes lessons at is brilliant. Rather than the one recital that never ends, they do four short recitals in one day. The older dancers get a chance to show off their talent multiple times, and the younger students don't have to sit there all day. (Which really translates to this, I don't have to sit there all day! I mean little kids in dance costumes are cute. . . but not after a certain amount of time.)

3. This is also final tournament of the baseball season weekend. If things line up, there is a possibility The General may be playing his final game at the exact same time as Princess' dance recital. AGH! There is no way to be in two places at the exact same time, and it will be hard to miss the game. Recitals are once a year, I'm so sorry General. (Seriously, can you feel my momma guilt?)

4. Hawaii is only 1 1/2 weeks away. I have done very little to prepare. I still need a swimsuit, and to go through my closet and make sure I have the right clothes. This is a huge challenge. It is hard to imagine yourself in shorts and summer dresses when it is still only 50 degrees and raining most days. I can tell you this, I bet I'm the whitest gal on the beach!

5. My mother-in-law has viral pneumonia. This in and of itself is a concern, but add to it she and my FIL are our childcare while Mr. Nomad and I go to Hawaii. Please pray that she feels better soon. Not for me, but for her. I worry that she will push herself, not wanting to let us down.

6. Did I mention I am so very tired of the rain and cold? I wore my winter coat, jeans and gloves at the baseball game last night. . .WITH a blanket wrapped around me. The silver lining, I will appreciate the sun in Hawaii more?

7. I believe 4 is my new favorite age. I am completely smitten with Bubby. (I know I've said it before, but really he keeps getting better all the time.) In fact, I've told my mother-in-law she is not allowed to steal him when she leaves. Let me tell you, she's going to want to. Remember how I told you that came out a bit grumpy, and held on to that snarky tendency? Well, for the most part the snarky boy is gone. Left in place is a sweet little boy, who is loving and kind. He tells me I'm nice and very beautiful. Oh, how I love that boy.

That is 7, and I'm off to tackle Mount Washmore. Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

:) Tami

Remember, Jen over at Conversion Diary hosts 7 Quick Takes each Friday. Stop by and check it out.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A lesson in life. . .

As I sit here typing, these are the things I hear in the background. (All statements from the Bubster are sad, and broken with tears in the middle.)

"I love you Blackout."

"I'm going to miss you Blackout."

"You are still breathing Blackout."

"But, he has been such a nice fish. It is just that I am going to miss him!"

Yes, our goldfish Blackout, AKA Boomer, AKA George is dying. I changed the water yesterday, and I'm not sure if I did something wrong or if it is just his time. His buddy Grace is swimming around the tank just fine. Alas, the fish is on his way out.

On the surface this is really sad. Bubby is crying and distressed. Which breaks my heart. I could have skipped this scene by flushing the fish, rushing to the pet store for a replacement, and Bubby would have been none the wiser. I could have saved him from this pain. But, I know that wouldn't be the best thing for my boy.

Losing the fish reminds me of the day we had to say goodbye to our beloved dog. For 12 years he was Mr. Nomad and my first baby. It is still hard for me to talk about that day, and I still miss that stupid dog. The silver lining (you know me, I'm the eternal half full) is the growth which comes from making our way through hard times.

Losing our dog was the hardest thing The General and Princess had ever experienced. What a beautiful parting gift it was. My furry boy was able to teach my babies even though it hurts really bad, life goes on. That you will experience happiness again, and how to cope with hurt. They relied heavily on our family love, and their faith. The first thing The General asked was for a family prayer.

So today as my sweet Bubby mourns the goldfish, I am grateful for this life lesson. It has sparked a discussion on eternal life, heaven and Bubby's biggest fear: separation from us. He only remembers that his buddy went away, and he can't stop by heaven to visit. Today I remind him that if we have faith, we will all rejoice in heaven together. (It is also a great reminder for me. Stay on the path Tami, make good choices, place God first. Eternity will be so sweet with my babies.) This is a big relief for him. He whimpered in my arms, "When I'm 100, and I go up to heaven, will you still hold me?"

"Yes, my sweet boy, Mommy will hold you forever. . ."

I will hold him forever. Maybe not in my arms, but in my heart. More importantly God is holding my boy, and His love is even better than mine!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Could it be??

What is this bright light, and blue sky over head? Oh, it is the sun. It has just been such a long time since I've seen you old friend. Please stay and play with us today. Pretty please?!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A little gardening advice from Mrs. Green Thumb

Mr. Nomad and I have been working our fingers to the bone with landscaping this past week. We have made some serious progress, and are to the point of adding some pops with flowers. So today on our way home from classes, the kiddos and I stopped at Home Depot to pick up a few perennials. Driving into the parking lot I spied the most beautiful plants, I was thrilled. I grabbed a cart, loaded up a few and found the rest of the items on my list.

Meanwhile the kiddos enjoyed running up and down the empty aisles. . . (Reason 1001 to Home School, you get to run errands when others are at work or in school. So nice to have the place almost to myself.) Fortunately they ran all their energy off, and then were sitting nicely in the check out line. Bubby flirting with the nice grandmaish lady working the check out.

As I start the check out process, Grandma (who by now really likes the Nomad Kiddos) informs me my favorite plants. . .the very ones who called my name across the parking lot. . .are extremely poisonous. WHAT?!? Hmmm. . .I think, maybe she is wrong and just being dramatic. Yet if I buy them and ignore her advice, that would be rude. I decide to put them back, go home, do some research and return another day for the plants. Seriously, I've never heard anything like this before. . .surely she is wrong.

Or NOT! Yep, I came home and Googled Fox Glove. Not good. Click here to read more. Thank goodness The Nomad Kiddos were sweet, and grabbed that Grandma's attention. I mean my kiddos may get on my nerves from time to time, but poison them in the garden? NEVER!
See what I mean? Aren't they beautiful? Any suggestions on a similar looking plant? One that won't kill my babies?

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Just Smile Bigger!

What do you think of the new header? This was taken after mass on Easter Sunday. Notice Bubby's puffy eyes? He wasn't too excited about the whole taking pictures thing. In the moment I gritted my teeth, pasted a smile on my face, and with as calm and sweet voice as I could muster said to the big kiddos, "Just look forward and smile big!" In my mind I was thinking, "This boy is gonna kill me yet."

At that moment in time, it was about getting one nice photo to remember Easter 2010. Now looking back over a month later, I think there are some tidbits of wisdom to hold on to.

Lesson number one, stay calm Tami. By remaining in control, and not freaking out (Who me? Never? Ha Ha Ha!) the rest of us were able to move on.

Lesson number two, it never hurts to put a smile on your face. Getting irritated and grumpy doesn't help. Think about the difference seeing a smiling face makes in your life. Seriously. A smiley baby cooing in the crib vs. screaming baby. Hmmm. . .something to think about.

Now if only I would have realized this, and embraced these life lessons years ago. I can think of several instances it would have come in handy. ;)

(I know Jody, you've been coaching me for years. I'm just a little slow.)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Giggling feet

Yesterday when we were walking out to our van, I gave Bubby a ride on the shopping cart. You know how you have them stand on the bottom, and hold onto the handle. Of course if you are giving a small boy a ride, you don't walk slowly. To make it fun and exciting, you have to run a bit. As we were running along Bubby says, "Mommy, my feet feel like they are giggling!" What a fun way to describe vibrations, giggling feet. I love little boys.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tami's Tips: Step Away From The Computer

Okay, if your husband is out for the evening. . .and you are the responsible adult in charge of the household: STEP AWAY FROM THE COMPUTER. It is an hour past Bubby's bedtime, but he and Princess are playing so nicely. The General is hanging out, and it is so fun to catch up on the bloggy world. Alas I need to be the mommy, and get these kiddos in bed. Good night.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tami's Tips: Frozen Fruit. . .YUM

Now that some of you are enjoying warmer weather (no hope of that here in the Pacific Northwest. . .we are freezing. . .but that is a whole other post), it is getting to be ice cream season. Some of you may be trying to cut back on calories, or you may simply be trying to eat healthier. Today's tip, substitute frozen fruit for high fat/high calorie ice creams.
My favorite are frozen blueberries. They are delicious, and LOADED with lots of good nutrition. I buy these 5 lb. bags @ Costco for around $7. Another benefit, frozen fruits don't go bad in the crisper drawer.
I like to serve them up in a little bowl. One serving (3/4 cup) is only 80 calories. By serving in a smaller bowl, it makes me think I've had a whole bowl of berries.

I have friends who love smoothies, and that is a nice way to sneak in fruits and vegetables. My only concern is whenever you blend, it takes A LOT of fruit, ice cream, or whatever to make a small shake. I'm always amazed when we make brown cows, how much ice cream is in each shake. For that very reason, I shy away from drinks of the blended variety. If you HAVE to have ice cream, stick to a small scoop served in one of the cute little bowls.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I heart P90X!

Back in January my neighbor, K invited me over to do an exercise video. At first we started just picking out one of the many videos, and doing what we felt like that day. Then I mentioned to another friend I was trying out these P90X workouts. She began to gush. She too was doing these workouts. Only she and her husband were faithfully doing the program. That means, following the nutritional guide, and the workout schedule. Here was the hook: She was getting great results! In just a couple months she had gone down 2 sizes.

The next day I filled K in on my conversation with my friend. I announced that we were done messing around. We were going to get serious about this P90X thing. K was as intrigued as I was. (K decided to follow the nutritional guides. Mr. Nomad & I eat pretty healthy, so I decided to just go with the workouts.)

When we started the workouts, I joked my way through much of the tapes. Seriously I thought I would never be able to do it. Did I really want to do it? It is HARD! Now, the strangest thing has happened. Each day I could do a little more, and now I am feeling good. In fact, I miss the workouts when we can't exercise. (Sounds crazy, doesn't it?)

So what is so great about this program? Why does it work? I think it is the variety. P90X is a combination of toning/cardio/stretching. You lift weights, do aerobic exercises, and yoga. The main idea is that by mixing things up, it creates muscle confusion. You are out smarting your body, thus no plateaus.

Many times us ladies are good at walking/running or doing aerobic activity. However, we neglect weights because we don't want to look bulky. This is really a myth. Toning with weights is the secret weapon. It builds muscle mass, which burns more calories (thus burning fat). More muscle means we are stronger, which decreases injuries. Another added benefit, women need the weight resistance to maintain our bone mass (osteoporosis is not a pretty thing).

Now K and I made our big commitment 4 months ago, and guess what?!? It really does work! K and I have both slimmed down. K has lost over 15 pounds, and I am so happy to be back in my pre-pregnancy jeans. (So what if my baby is 4. . .I was just pacing myself. ;)

The big thing for me is maintenance. K and I agreed, this wasn't going to be a 90 day thing for us. Rather, we wanted to get fit, and then commit to staying fit. We have 2 weeks left of the Lean schedule, and then we are starting the Classic.

I'm not saying everyone should run out and buy the P90X videos. I think the most important thing is to combine some type of cardio and weight resistance training. It can be as simple as a walk in your neighborhood, followed with push ups, stomach crunches, leg lifts, lunges and arm curls. (I've done this in the past and it was very effective.) Some people love personal trainers and gyms. There are tons of great programs out there. Find the one that suits you. Personally, P90X is the one that is working for me right now.

Wish me luck. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Monday after Spring Break Blues. . .

Okay, it is Monday morning. We had a wonderful time on our Spring Break. No traveling for us, but our dear friends from Charleston, SC flew in to spend a week with us. Fun was had by all. Now it is Monday. . .time to get back on track. Oh, I think I'm going to need the whole pot of coffee for this one.

On a side note: How is it every day I stayed up way too late chatting, and had the freedom to sleep in, Bubby managed to haul his little hiney out of bed around 7:00AM. . . Yet today when I need to be up and at 'em, the boy is still slumbering away past 8:00AM????

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday?

Today is the day we solemnly remember our Lord's Passion. Jesus being tortured, put to death on our behalf, and that is good?

Lent is not a time when we regretfully step back from all the fun and joy we have in life to enthusiastically pretend we are good Christians by starting a diet. Lent is a time when we remember that God invites us to true joy. God is love. All our preoccupations with anything less than what God intends for us is illusion.
--Sister Kathryn James, FSP

God is love, and He has invited us to true joy. . .now that is good.

I know many of you have wonderful plans for Easter. I pray they are blessed, and this very special time in our church year is meaningful and filled with love.

In closing I'd like to invite those of you who will be spending Easter with children to give this Easter Story Cookie recipe a try. Our Faith Formation Director sent a very similar version home with us, and we are excited to give it a whirl this year. I think it will be perfect for Bubby.

Take care my friends. I'll see you after Easter. I've got some Hot Cross Buns to finish up.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Tami's Tips- Volume 1: Are your piggies ready?

If I were Mary or Dawn, I'd have a really cool logo to go with my new idea. Alas, it is just me, Tami. What you see, is what you get. Nothing fancy, but sent out with the best of intentions. So this in my new idea. I love learning, and picking peoples' brains for improving my life. What I love even more than that is sharing the things I learn. If it makes my life easier, better, happier, etc. . .surely someone else might benefit from this little tidbit. In honor of the pay it forward of advice, each week I'm going to share a tip I've learned.
Tami's Tip #1: Preparing the Piggies
With spring in the air, warm weather and summer sandals are just around the corner. Now if your poor piggies are anything like mine, they are looking a bit neglected right about now. Seriously, who needs cute feet when they are in socks 23 3/4 hours of the day? Well, a few weeks ago when I was getting out of the shower, I noticed my heels were all cracked and not so attractive. Is this what 40 means? My feet are going to heck in a hand basket?

My solution? Before bed each night I've been slathering my feet and hands with lotion. Nothing fancy, just the Target brand aloe and lanolin. I massage a generous amount of lotion around my feet and ankles, then I put on some nice cozy cotton socks. After a few weeks of this, my heels are all healed up and ready for summer.

It sure beats a spendy trip to the spa for a pedicure. Now to tackle those toe nails that have been on hiatus since last fall. . .

Monday, March 29, 2010

The General on Nutrition

Trying to get my oldest child to eat healthy has been a challenge, just about his whole life. He started out so promising, gobbling up the Lima beans, asparagus, broccoli, or whatever healthy veggie we placed before him. Around 18 months, the tides changed. We have battled for years. I've tried every trick in the book, and am now resigned to continued nonchalant education.
So the other day The General and I are eating lunch, and I go into my nonchalant education mode.
Me: "Hey, did you know you can tell if you are getting good nutrition by looking at the colors of the food on your plate?"
The General: "Seriously? How?"
Me: "Well, They say you are getting good nutrition if your food is colorful. See my salad? I have green, red, black and purple in here. How about your lunch? Do you think it would cut it?"
The General: "Hmmm. . .well, I have white-tortilla, brown--peanut butter, and gold--honey. Hey, give me some Cheetos, then I'd have orange."

Smarty pants!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Rock & Worship Roadshow 2010

The other night I scored serious cool points with the Nomad Kiddos. I gave in to their begging and pleading to attend the Rock & Worship Roadshow 2010. :)Sidewalk Prophets opened the show, and they were great. I'm a bit embarrassed to say I didn't recognize their name, but I did know their music. I so enjoy their song " Words I Would Say."Next was Remedy Drive, with their hit "Daylight". They are one of The General's favorite bands. He has indoctrinated Bubby into their greatest fans club. It was so fun to see my boys rockin' out in concert, to a song they have played no less than a billion times at home. (No, I'm not exaggerating.)
Fee took the stage next. They sounded great, although I have to admit we didn't see as much of them as I would have liked. There are no intermissions, just quick breaks in between acts. After noshing on a half bag of Kettle Korn, and a 16 oz. bottle of pink lemonade, Bubby needed to make a rest stop. You may not see it, but I do believe this may have put me in the running for Mommy of the Year 2010!
After our pit stop, we were treated to the beautiful voice of Francesca Battistelli. You might recognize her big hit, "Free to be Me." She was very sweet, introducing her aunt in the audience. We all laughed when her aunt held up a sign that read, "Franny, call your mom."
I think Bubby really enjoyed Francesca. He asked for my cell phone, then proceeded to wave it in the air. Bubby, age four, official christian rock concert groupie. I'm so proud. Really, I am.
Family Force Five was up next. They were very AC/DCish, and not a favorite of mine. Some people really enjoy heavy metal, so this was definitely the portion of the show for them. I sent Mr. Nomad a text saying, "David, save me. . ." I'm too old for headbanging. In their defense, they did say if you didn't want to dance, you should go get a corn dog or something. I'll take the dog next time. ;)
The David Crowder Band did indeed save me! Oh my! I have to admit, I love to listen to music, but I'm not a HUGE fan. HUGE fans like The General, Princess and Mr. Nomad know all about their favorite musicians. What they look like, where they are touring, their hometowns, and how they came to be a band. Real music fans can pick out songs by just hearing the intro. You get the picture.
Any who, I am familiar with The David Crowder Band, but I had never "seen" them. So when they took the stage Mr. Crowder's appearance surprised me. He had a crazy fro, with a lumber jack shirt, and preppy square black glasses. He looked like he just walked off the streets of my beloved Olympia, WA. Meaning, he was very eclectic. Which is not a bad thing, just not the image that I had in my head. Do you ever have those experiences? You hear a voice, create a picture, and then when you meet the voice in person it just doesn't jive?
Now don't get bent out of shape. Before you think I'm shallow and unkind, know this. . .Mr. Crowder even made a joke about he and his drummer's beards fitting right into the Pacific Northwest look.
Enough about the look. Let's talk music. Again, OH MY! The David Crowder Band ROCKED THE HOUSE! They played the favorites, but also some fun crowd songs. My favorite was when they had the whole Tacoma Dome singing, "I'll Fly Away." My kiddos were surprised and impressed that I knew the words. Shhh, don't tell them it is a really old song. Let's keep it between us. You know, I am campaigning hard for that Mother of the Year 2010 title.
Just when we were having such a great time, and you think it can't get better. . .MercyMe took the stage! Okay, that may be a stretch. We've been blessed to have seen MercyMe in concert before. I knew they could rise to the occasion, and they did not disappoint.
I'm telling you this, I am smitten with their whole new "The Generous Mr. Lovewell" theme. The look (see above) is cool. The message is even better. Bart, the lead singer told the story of their brainstorming session. They discussed how we struggle to be kind to our neighbor. We neglect to know the guy across the street, so when he needs help we may not even realize it. We also fail to turn the other cheek when someone is rude or unkind. In a nutshell, they are challenging everyone to LOVEWELL! Love it!
As I sit typing this little synopsis of our evening, it is a bit bittersweet. Bitter, because Mr. Nomad had been looking forward to this concert for months. Unfortunately, he is off on another Air Force adventure. Bummer. (I'm not complaining, I feel beyond blessed he was able to be with us for Christmas and 2 birthdays. A luxury we do not take for granted.) Sweet, because I love sharing experiences like this with my children. I'm so grateful there are great Christian musicians out there providing awesome entertainment for our family. How wonderful to be able to take my entire family, and never once worry about foul language, unkind words or immodest dress.
Now the icing on this delectable cake? When we were walking up to the entrance a very nice gentleman stopped us, asking if we were a family. Since I didn't know what he was getting at, I briefly thought "What a goof ball. Of course we are a family. What crazy woman would pick up 3 kids--one just 4 years old, and bring them to a rock concert?" So I answered in a confused voice, "Yes, why???" The gent handed me 4 admission tickets, and said, "Thanks for bringing your family tonight!"
I think that generous act of kindness really sums up the reason for this tour. MercyMe is trying to make their music ministry available to the masses. The quote I loved went something like this, "We don't just want to be Christians who simply use our talents to entertain alone. We want to inspire others to serve Christ." MercyMe and several other Christian artists work closely with Compassion International, and many other wonderful charities to help those less fortunate. If you are interested in learning more about this charity, check it out here. If you are interested in learning more about the tour, check it our here.
I hope some of you are able to see it when it comes to a city near you.
AND, hey, if you happen to talk to any Nomad Kiddos. . .a vote for Tami would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

NEWS FLASH. . .I don't read Chinese or other foreign languages.

Just a little note to those who find it necessary to leave spam comments on my blog. I do not appreciate it.
I do apologize if you were honestly trying to leave me a comment in Chinese praising the wonders of my blog. Desperately wanting me to know there was a deep connection. My writing, my musings have so enthralled you. Maybe you want to make a movie out of my life? I mean PW isn't the only one with a good love story and interesting past.
Alas, somehow I do not believe that to the be case.
You'll notice my comments are hidden. My garbage can to delete said comments went missing. Until I can tidy up. . .no comments.
You have no idea how this pains me. I live for comments. Okay, I'm being a bit dramatic. But your comments really do make me smile!

PS It's not that I don't want to read foreign languages, it is just that it has been awhile since I've studied German. When I'm done homeschooling my children, I'll take up personal development in this area. Until then, please stick to English. I honestly don't mean to be a rude American.

YIPPEE!! My garbage cans magically appeared, so comments are ON!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tuesday Treasures - Sometimes it is in the memories.

Mary over at Hope Echoes hosts Tuesday Treasures each week. Stop by and check it out.

This is one of my favorite treasures. Doesn't look like much, does it? An old soda can, that has seen better days. Sometimes the treasure isn't in the value, or even in the aesthetic properties. Sometimes the treasure lies in the memories. . .

This old can used to have a picture drawn on the side, with my name, T-A-M-I neatly printed on the side. It was my very own bank my Grandma B. made, just for me. When I would visit on Saturday, which was the weekend tradition--Saturday Grandma B., Sundays with Grandma L., I would go to the cupboard and get out my bank. Oh the fun I had counting the change.

My Grandma's house wasn't fancy. She often joked that she lived in a tar paper shack, which wasn't far from the truth. What Grandma's house lacked in "things", it more than made up for in love and fun. There was slopping the pigs, carrying in baby lambs in the spring, collecting the sap from the maple trees for syrup, gardening, doing laundry with the old fashioned ringer machine, mushrooming, wood hauling, tractor driving and card playing until late into the night. My favorite task at Grandma's house was baking-she even let me eat the dough! I could go on and on. You see, Grandma didn't have electricity until 1977, and running water with indoor plumbing came a few years after that.
This was taken the last time I visited my Grandma B. at the home place. (She has since moved to a nursing home.) Bubby was just 4 months old. He was meeting his great-grandma for the first time, which was extra special for me. Bubby was born on her 89th birthday. When we arrived that day I made a comment about him being her birthday present, and without even missing a beat she replied, "Well, do I get to keep him then?"
Here is Grandma with Princess when she was just 3 or so. Grandma was collecting eggs from her hen house. Grandma was 86 years young in this one. Still living on the farm alone, with chickens to tend. When the chickens got to be too much, we knew her days in the Boondocks were numbered.

Looking at this old soda can doesn't mean a whole lot to others. In fact, on a few occasions Mr. Nomad has almost thrown it out while unpacking. However, when I hold this old can, it brings back a flood gate of happy memories from my childhood. It brings back a place where I was unconditionally loved. A place where I was made to feel worthwhile. Over the years I written numerous gushing letters to my Grandma. I needed her to know how much I love her, and how much I appreciated all she has done for me. Grandma only brushed off the praise, and prefers to hear about the everyday happenings of my life as a momma. You see, that is my Grandma B. She is quiet, strong, hard-working, and loving. I hope I can grow up to be as wonderful as my Grandma B.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Bubby on human anatomy.

The other night Bubby & I were taking a quick shower before bed. I'm not sure how it happens but there seems to be a time warp at my house. Does anyone else have this problem? One minute it is around 4:30PM, and I'm thinking about what we should have for dinner. Before I know it, it is 8:30 or 9PM and I'm saying, "Oh crap, I've gotta get this little man in bed!" Which is how we both came to be in the shower at the same time.
While I was quickly shampooing our hair, Bubby starts walking around me in circles. He then looks up and innocently declares, "Mommy, I think something of yours fell off."

Monday, March 8, 2010

Words of Wisdom. . .


The other day The General and I were having a little follow up discussion about the "Purity" talk at his church youth group. When we first started having these "talks", I was very uncomfortable. In fact, I was a little put out that I was even doing any talking in this area. He is a boy after all. Isn't it the job of Mr. Nomad to chat on these matters?
Enter reality. I'm with the children 95% of the time. Most chats are not choreographed, rather they just happen. When you are the one who "happens" to be home all day, you get the surprise chats. Which it turns out, God has given me the grace to handle. In fact, I feel really good we have been able to foster an open relationship with The General. (Okay, so he is a chatterbox like me. I'm not so great, he is. Princess may be a whole other matter. She is much more quiet and reserved like her daddy. . .time will tell.)
As we were talking, I wanted to make sure things were being laid out in a biblical manner. But even more importantly then that, I wanted to make sure he wasn't hearing about this topic and being shamed. Or that he wouldn't feel shameful in the future.
So I started explaining how we can't control what thoughts come into our heads, but we can control our reactions to them. Seriously, what young man doesn't notice girls? I don't want him to feel shamed because of a natural response, but rather help learn to him train himself into appropriate responses. Seeing a pretty girl may bring about, "Hmmm. . .she's pretty"--acceptable. "Nice knockers"--not acceptable. (Don't laugh. As a child I heard all about the knockers in this world. I want better for my boys, and my girl. )
Here is where the wisdom comes in:
The General says, "So our brain is like a computer?"
"What do you mean?" I replied.
"Our brain is like the inter net. Sometimes you just get pop ups. You don't ask for the pop up, it just comes up on our screen. Then you have to make the choice to X it out," my boy wisely explained.
That is exactly it. Impure thoughts may just "pop up", which doesn't make you bad or sinful. Rather it is the follow up which can cause us to sin. Do we quickly X out the impurity, the jealousy, the unkindness, etc. . . Or, do we act on those thoughts in a sinful manner?
Once again I am reminded I did not become a mother to impart my wisdom on this world, rather God uses these precious blessings to raise me.
I hope my blessings may be helpful to some of you, as we journey through this life together.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Another reason homeschooling rocks. . .

You don't have to get all spruced up for the day until you are good and ready!
This is me, quizzing the big kiddos on their American History. This was taken right after lunch. That is Princess and Bubby enjoying some bubbly play while we were schooling. The General was in our closet playing with his action figures.
I love the time we spend together learning, playing, and just enjoying one another's company. I am so grateful our family has been blessed with this opportunity.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Need a chuckle?

Yesterday morning started with our usual Tuesday routine. Religion over breakfast, quick get ready, and out the door. I dropped The General off at his classes, and was on my way to my Scripture Study (it is my guilty pleasure). When I hear Bubby's gurgled, "Mommy!" Yep, gurgled. You know what is coming. . .
I look over my shoulder, and poor Bubby is covered in vomit. I yell for Princess to help him, as he is still throwing up, and all she can manage is an, "Oh, gross. I think I'm going to be sick." As she is gagging and trying to open her window for air, I make a split second decision not to press this one. I'd hate to test her gag reflux.
I frantically look for a spot to pull over. NOTHING. I turn the corner, still no shoulder on the edge of the street. I zip into a neighborhood, slam on the brakes, jam the van into park, jump out, and run around to Bubby's side to help him. Poor boy was COVERED in vomit. He's crying, Princess is gagging, Calgon anyone?
Fortunately the vomiting subsided, so I calmly undress him-careful not to smear yuck all over his poor little face.
Here's where the chuckle comes in.
Since Bubby has been such a great boy, potty trained for over 1 1/2 years, I don't carry a diaper bag. Rookie mistake, I know, I know. So my little man is standing in the rain, sick and shivering. What is a mommy to do?
Thank heavens for the layered look. I take off my jacket, (the people whose neighborhood we just invaded probably think I am nuts) peel off my long sleeved t-shirt, and put it on Bubby. Now I am standing in the rain, in my tank top, in February, freezing. (Maybe, they all went to work and didn't see me? Or they work the nightshift and were still sleeping?) Princess, still trying not to lose her cookies, is staring at me with a, "have you lost your mind?" look on her face.
I rearrange the children. Bubby in Princess' booster, Princess up front (I know back is safer, but I REALLY didn't want to clean up more puke) with a cracked window for fresh air. We made it home uneventfully. Now that Bubby wasn't covered in yuck, and her stomach was safely calmed, Princess took him upstairs and bathed him. I tackled the messy clothes and car seat. (How did I do this without my big kid helpers?) As well as finding myself some more clothing.
So that's it my friends. Look for me on the news, "Crazed Mother Strips on Quiet Neighborhood Street!"
Are we having fun yet?

**This is an actual story out of the life of Momma Nomad. Bubby is feeling better, and no other children have succombed to the virus, thus far.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Teacher's Little Helper

I was over at No Heavy Lifting today, leaving a comment for Dawn, when I began bubbling over the joys of Magic School Bus. If you have elementary aged school, these little videos are gold.
Back when I was pregnant with Bubby, The General was in 3rd grade, and Princess was starting Kindergarten. Each day we would begin our school day around 8:00AM, with a break for lunch around noon. This happened to coincide with PBS' airing of Magic School Bus. My kiddos were thrilled. Initially I was a little concerned about breaking for TV mid-day. However, after a few weeks of collapsing my pregnant body on the couch, I realized two things. #1 I needed the mid-day break, and #2 it was good stuff.
I'd lay down for those 30 minutes, and get up refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of the day. Which was important, as Mr. Nomad was working long days at the Pentagon. No Daddy coming home in the evening for respite. I was pretty much on my own.
After watching the program with the kiddos a few days, I realized they were learning some great science. In fact after a couple weeks, I bagged the expensive science curriculum I had purchased for The General. I left it to the fates he would be okay in science, instead focusing on other academics that year. In the spring I had him tested. Guess what?? My boy scored in the 99th percentile for science.
Now I can't attribute all of that to Magic School Bus, as we are a nerdy science family. We love nature hikes, and he lived for all of those Jeff Corwin and Steve Erwin shows when he was a younger. Animal Planet's Top 10 is still one of his favorite shows.
However, I do think the Frizz was useful. Now we tried both the videos and the books. The books were fun for experiments, but the videos explain things in a much more captivating way. You can find both the videos and books at the local library. I'm sure NetFlix or other video services may also have them on hand.
Magic School Bus was a life saver that year. Hopefully Ms. Frizzle and the rest of the gang can help out a few other mommas with lots on their plates.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

101 Wednesday: The New Saint Joseph Baltimore Catechism

This is my first 101 Wednesday post. I'd like to share with you my love for The New Saint Joseph Baltimore Catechism. I know this is pre-Vatican II, but I still love it. No, I'm not a super conservative Catholic that yearns for the mass to be said in Latin. I wish I were that knowledgeable and devout. Alas, I am just a work in progress. Maybe one day I will graduate to that uber level of wisdom. Until then, I am going to just keep on trucking. Studying our faith, and basking in the glory of our Lord.
So this is where my basking has recently been: For our daily religion I have the kiddos memorize this Catechism. I love this book, because it is laid out nicely in little chapters. Monday we read the little chapter and the corresponding Catechism. Tuesday we read the Catechism portion, explain all vocabulary/intent questions, and do half the chapter questions. (I feel it is imperative my children UNDERSTAND what they are memorizing.) Wednesday the other half of the questions, again reading the Catechism. Thursday go over Catechism, and read the Bible verses to support the Catechism. Friday more Catechism. Now the following week we practice the Catechism each day, with the goal of having that chapter's Catechism memorized by Friday.
Memorization is important to brain development, but I also think it is important for my children to have this stuff down so they can be positive defenders of our faith. So much of the Catholic Church is misunderstood, many times because we as Catholics are not well versed in our faith. The other portion which is pivotal, is my hope these treasures will be stored up in their hearts. One day they will find themselves in a difficult situation, and these little treasures will point them in the right direction. The direction of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
For some time the Catechism has been focusing on the 10 Commandments. Now we all know these, right? What I find so helpful is they explain the command in terms my children (and I) understand. For example: Thou shalt not kill. Hey, that is pretty easy. I do not go around killing anyone. . .but do I? It goes on to explain. . .
by the fifth commandment we are commanded to take proper care of our own spiritual and bodily well-being, and that of our neighbor. This forbids murder and suicide, and also fighting, anger, hatred, revenge, drunkenness, reckless driving, and bad example. --Saint Joseph Baltimore Catechism 1964
Ouch. I've got some work to do.
Now the spirit of this exercise is not to condemn. That was not God's intent when he handed the tablets over to Moses. The intent, which the Israelites rejoiced over, was for these commands to be a guide to holy living. I pray these guides are as helpful to you as they have been to our family.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Where haave you beeen Taammii????

ABM stopped by looking for me. She noticed I'd been gone a while. No, I haven't been depressed about the Vikings loss. I've been a fan for years, we're used to losing. ;)

So where have I been? I'd like to say off on some exotic adventure, like my husband. Last weekend he was in Turkey again. He was able to visit the city of Taursus, and tour the home of Saint Paul. (I'm a little jealous.)

Alas my adventures have been here at home. (He's a little bit jealous.)

Let's see. . .we've had visitors. Remember that good friend we lived with last spring when we moved here? Well, the past few weeks we have been able to repay the favor. Kim was here getting her Bridal Boutique squared away. Which was nice to have company, I wasn't lonely when Mr. Nomad was away.

My mom and sisters were here a few days, and Mr. Nomad's brother also came for a long weekend. Just a few short weeks ago, I was all worried about having wasted God's gifts on our home. I think He showed me loud and clear that He is using our home to bless others. Hopefully I'll live up to His blessings.
Mr. Nomad's brother flew in on Princess' Birthday. He was a special surprise. I think she liked it, don't you?

There was the 10th Birthday Party for Princess, which was a lot of fun. She planned the party, researching games and cakes on-line. She settled on a rainbow theme. That cake nearly did me in. See the brightly colored layers? To get the vibrant colors you add Jell-O. What the blogs didn't mention was the Jell-O changes the consistency of the cake. Therefore instead of flipping out of the pan, you have to scrape it out. I was certain the cake was ruined. I was even MORE certain I would have to hit Costco for a cake as a plan B, which did not go over well with Princess. Fortunately after the layers cooled, I was able to smash them together. That and 3 or 4 tubs of frosting, and we were good to go! Looking at her birthday photos made me think back to the parties of her toddler days. You know the parties, the ones where the mommies spend the whole time running around after tons of little kids.Now they all sat properly at the table, having lunch like young ladies. Oh, my girl is growing up.

Adventure #3:
Remember back in November ABM when I said, "Eat yourself silly, and after the Christmas season we can make a pact and get healthy?" Well, I've been trying to do that very thing. I haven't really changed my diet, as we actually eat pretty healthy. (Okay, so the chocolate I sneak isn't so healthy. BUT, I'm willing to work out more so I can enjoy my chocolate. If I can't enjoy food, then what is the point?) Anyhow, instead of dieting I've been exercising. My neighbor and friend, Katie invited me to join her for P90X workouts in her garage. They are exercise videos that are pretty challenging. I'm able to do more and more each time, so I guess I am progressing. I'll have to take my measurements next week though to see how I'm really doing. The up side, I'm getting fit. The down side, it takes up my blog time!

Next up:

Bubby's hair vs. Silly Putty. Consider this a sort of public announcement. Truly an adventure. It measures right up there with the patience Saint Paul needed when he was out evangelizing.

Princess yells, "MOM! Bubbby didn't listen to me! I told him NOT to put the Silly Putty near his head, and he just smashed it into the back of his hair!"

AGH! This is NOT going to be fun. For anyone.

Luckily I was on the phone chatting with my friend. She quickly googled Silly Putty in hair. Did you know you can get it out with: 1) Rubbing Alcohol 2) Vegetable Oil or 3) Olive Oil. I went for #1. I was in the bathroom, and it was the closest product.

I think it's working. . .

Just a little bit more. . .

Whew. . .Thanks Gwen. I appreciate assistance in these family emergency situations. (Thank goodness I didn't have to cut his curls.) Bubby thanks you too! And that my friends is where I have been. Maybe not as exciting as the home of Saint Paul, but a blessed life filled with adventure none the less.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Licking our wounds. . .

If you are a Vikings fan, you know what I'm talking about. Oh, how that game HURT! But then again, if you are a true purple and gold Vikings fan, you know the sting of defeat very well. Now the real test is here. . .if you are a TRUE fan you won't mind telling everybody how much you love your Vikings. AND you would NEVER trade them for another team. . .even if they can never quite get that elusive Super Bowl Championship. Yep, I'm a true fan. . .but it still stings.

Thank goodness I'm not Mr. Favre, now he is probably hurting a whole lot more than the rest of us today. Poor guy got pummeled yesterday. It was hard to watch.

Why was I watching? You've never heard me go on and on about football before. (Well, Jody Blue has, but that was many moons ago. You know the time when no one called me Mommy.) My boys left me. The General insisted on going to his church youth group, so I had to stay home without my football commentators to simply tell me about the game. I had forgotten how passionate I was about football, which is probably a good thing. From now on, the boys can't leave me alone during these big games. I think I scared Princess.

So to my Vikings, I have this to say: Thanks for a great season, and although yesterday's game was a bit. . .uh. . .difficult to watch, we still love you. You will always be our team. (For the record. Any little Nomad that thinks they can just jump ship and leave the Vikes will find themselves sleeping on the porch! I'm not being too harsh. We have to train those that may be faint at heart. How else do you think the Vikings have garnered such loyal fans? See above comment about our Super Bowl history.)

Go Vikings!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Seven Quick Takes: Volume 3

1. It stinks only having one working computer in the house. My children use the computer for their schooling and as a treat. My husband uses the computer for business. Needless to say my blogging doesn't hit the top of the priority list.

2. Last weekend we had a lovely time in Leavenworth (I'll post about this in the next few days) but Bubby picked up a bad cold. I was quickly reminded of what life is like without much sleep. Another reason I wasn't blog hopping this past week. When everyone was tucked in, I quickly followed suit.

3. My mom and sisters are coming to visit. (Not Jody Blue--my other sisters. . .very long story. Maybe one day I'll share. Or maybe not?) Anyway, I'm torn. On the one hand I'm very excited to see them. My family doesn't travel, so this is truly a treat. I think the last time my one sister visited was almost 10 years ago when we lived in IL. My other sister and mom visited us about 7 years ago when we lived here before. The reason I'm nervous? Well, I know this may sound stupid, but I don't want them to think I'm a snob.

4. About the snob thing. Mr. Nomad and I LOVE our new home. We saved and sucked up a lot over the years to buy this home. However, now I find I am frequently embarrassed. I am working on this. Our home is a gift from God, and I shouldn't be ungrateful. Especially since we really do try to bless many others with our home. By having a roomier house, we have been able to host without it making Mr. Nomad overwhelmed and crazy. Then here comes the guilt again. . .should we have given more of our money to others instead?

5. I actually went to the doctor this week for an annual (or whenever you get to it) check up, complete with a mammogram. (I hadn't been to the doctor since my postpartum checkup after Bubby. . .oops.) Ladies it wasn't bad. Not a favorite activity, but nothing to fear. I brought along my knitting and some planners for schooling,and it was actually quite lovely to have almost uninterrupted moments. Do you think they would mind if I came back next week? I could get the rest of my planning done for this month.
If wimpy me can do this, so can you. They stressed how important it was to get a healthy baseline, so in the future if you have something weird in a mammogram they'll know what is going on. We all know early detection is the key to treatment with breast cancer. So go get smooshed. Stepping down from soapbox.

6. I started knitting a pair of socks. It feels good to knit again. I really missed it, or maybe I just really miss my friends back in DC who used to knit with me. While knitting is fun, it does cut into my computer time. Which is good, and bad.

7. After being gone from blogging for a week, I noticed that I have insecurities in bloggy land. I don't do the stat counters. For one they are too fancy, and I don't want to take the time to figure out how to use them. Two, it may hurt my feelings if no one stops by. Which in my insecure moment I wondered, "Did anybody even notice I've been gone?" See, we are all prone to the need to be loved and accepted. Even if by the virtual set. I know one thing, I missed you. Over the past week I kept wondering what funny comments or really good posts I was missing, and there were some good ones.

If you like to read more Quick Takes, stop by Conversion Diary.